How was your week

Posted: April 13, 2019 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, hockey, post season, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The Tampa Bay Lighting where the best team in the NHL this season. They ended the regular season with 128 points easily claiming the President’s trophy. Tampa Bay was 21 points better than any other team during the regular season. Both the Boston Bruins and the Calgary Flames had 107 points during the regular season. Tampa Bay headed into the Stanley Cup playoffs as the favorite, but as we’ve seen time and time again winning the President’s trophy doesn’t always equal playoff success and the Lighting have started off in a hole.

Tampa Bay opened their opening round playoff series hosting the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Lighting got off to a fast start in Game 1 putting up 3 goals in the 1st period, but what looked like an solid Game 1 win didn’t quite turn out that way. The Blue Jackets scored 4 straight goals; 1 in the 2nd period and 3 in the 3rd period including the game winner by Seth Jones at 14:05 of the period to take the win for Columbus.

Game 2 was last night as the Lighting looked to even up the series. This time it was Columbus that got off to the fast start scoring 2 goals in the 1st period. Of course you had to wonder if the team that got off to the fast start would be able to hold on in this game and the Blue Jackets did.

Columbus was the only team to score in the 2nd period and had a 3-0 lead heading into the 3rd period before the Lighting got on the scoreboard. While the Blue Jackets came back from being down 3 goals in Game 1 the Lighting was unable to make that kind of comeback. The Blue Jackets added 2 more goals in the 3rd period as they pulled away for a 5-1 win in Game 2.

Now this was just the third time this season that the Lighting have lost back to back games, but even down 2-0 there is some hope for Tampa Bay. Last season the Blue Jackets took their first two games against the Washington Capitals in that 1st round series last season and then proceeded to lose four straight games. After that series the Capitals went on to win the Stanley Cup. Can the Lighting repeat that scenario? or will they just end up being another President’s trophy winner that doesn’t win the Stanley Cup?

Now there is a chance that the Lighting will have to go into Game 3 without their leading scorer Nikita Kucherov. In the 2nd period of last nights loss a clearly frustrated Kucherov tripped Blue Jackets Defenseman Markus Nutivaara. Then while Nutivaara was on his knees Kucherov checked him into the boards. It was clearly a dangerous hit and Kucherov received a 5 minute major penalty and a game misconduct for that series of events.

Kucherov is scheduled to have a hearing with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety about that boarding penalty on Nutivaara.

With Tampa Bay already down 2 games to 0 in the series they can’t afford to lose their leading scorer for length of time in this series.

Kucherov was the leagues leading scorer with 128 points. In 82 games he had 41 goals and 87 assists was a +24 for Tampa Bay this season. With those 128 points Kucherov claimed the Art Ross trophy and with the season he’s had you have to think he’s a front runner for the Hart Memorial trophy.

How will the Lighting do if they have to play without Kucherov?

Now we’ve mentioned the injury situation the New York Yankees have been going through this season and believe it or not they lost another starter to injury.

This time it was Gary Sanchez who landed on the 10-day Injury List. Sanchez was placed on the Injury List retroactive to April 11th with a left calf strain. Sanchez becomes the 12th Yankees player to land o the Injury List this season.

Sanchez had a rough 2018 as he played in just 89 games due to injuries and hit .186, but he got off to a good start this season. In 11 games Sanchez was hitting .268 with 6 home runs.

There’s no timetable for Sanchez’s return. The Yankees have called up catcher Kyle Higashioka from Triple-A to take Sanchez’s roster spot. Higashioka is expected to split time with Austin Romine behind the plate until Sanchez returns.

The Yankees did get some good news on the injury front as left handed starting pitching C.C. Sabathia will be activated from the Injury List to make his first start of the season today against the Chicago White Sox.

This passed off season Sabathia underwent minor knee surgery a well as having an angioplasty. This lead to the Yankees pacing Sabathia on the Injury List to allow him the time he needed to recover properly. Now Sabathia was technically on the Yankees active roster as he started the season off by serving a five game suspension for hitting Jesus Sucre with a pitch in a game late last season.

Sabathia; who’ll turn 39 in July signed a one year $8 million dollar deal with the Yankees this past off season; so he could play his 19th and final season in pinstripes.

Sabathia along with Masahiro Tanaka, James Paxson and J.A. Happ give the Yankees four solid starting pitchers in their rotation. What New York will have to decide is if Domingo German will continue to fill Luis Severio’s spot in the rotation while he works his way back from injury or if we’ll see Gio Gonzalez get a call up from Triple-A to fill that rotation spot.

The Yankees signed Gonzalez a little less than a month ago as some insurance for -A covering Severino’s injury. Gonzalez has made 2 starts in Triple-A covering 10 innings. With the late start to his season it might take Gonzalez another start or two before he’s ready to join the Yankees starting rotation.

With the Yankees off to a slow 5-8 start this season and with it looking like Severino is still going to be out for quite a while. Will the Yankees make a move for a starting pitcher? Or will they run with Gonzalez?

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but if you miss the podcast live you can head over to TuneIn.com and you can listen to it any time you want.

Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @Burketime

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