Archive for the ‘horse racing’ Category

How was your week

Posted: May 20, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in basketball, hockey, horse racing, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

While the NBA Conference finals are turning into a complete joke over in the NHL the two Conference finals series they have going on are turning into very good series. Both series are tied at 2-2 with a Game 5 between the Anaheim Ducks and the Nashville Predators tonight and Game 5 of the Pittsburgh Penguins/Ottawa Senators series tomorrow there’s still time for you to jump in and watch some good hockey.

Now both the Penguins and the Senators where down a game coming into their Game 4 match ups and they both picked up big wins to avoid being in an elimination scenario for now. On Thursday night Ottawa picked up a big 3-2 win in overtime to even their series at 2-2. Corey Perry scored the game winner for the Ducks 10:25 into overtime to give Anaheim the win. The Penguins also picked up a 3-2 win in Game 4 of there series, but they got their win in regulation. After a terrible start in Game 3 Marc-Andre Fleury was replaced in the Pittsburgh goal by Matt Murray. Murray stopped 24 of the 26 shots he saw in the game. Pittsburgh actually jumped out to a 3-0 lead in Game 4 and had to hold on as Ottawa scored late in both the 2nd and 3rd period to make it a one goal game. A penalty on Ottawa for too many men on the ice 19:23 into the 3rd period killed any man advantage the Senators would have the Penguins took a 3-2 win and the series was tied.

Tonight the Western Conference finals has moved back to Anaheim for the Game 5 match up between the Ducks and the Predators. Then on Sunday the Eastern Conference finals are back in Pittsburgh for their Game 5 match up as the Penguins will host the Senators. Each team has won on the others ice; so I’m not sure if there’s a home ice advantage for either team hosting Game 5. Of course the winner of these Game 5 match ups sets up a chance at eliminating their opponent in Game 6 and moving on to the Stanley Cup finals.

The NBA announced the finalist for there 2017 season awards. There are six awards with three finalist for each award. Here are the nominees.

Most Improved Player: Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks. Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets. Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz.

Sixth Man of the Year: Andre Iguodala of the Golden State Warriors. Lou Williams of the Houston Rockets. Eric Gordon of the Houston Rockets.

Defensive Player of the Year: Draymond Green of the Golden State Warriors. Kawhi Leonard of the San Antonio Spurs. Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz.

Rookie of the Year: Malcolm Brogdon of the Milwaukee Bucks. Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers. Dario Saric of the Philadelphia 76ers.

Coach of the Year: Mike D’Antoni of the Houston Rockets. Gregg Popovich of the San Antonio Spurs. Erik Spoelstra of the Miami Heat.

Most Valuable Player: Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder. James Harden of the Houston Rockets. Kawhi Leonard of the San Antonio Spurs.

You’ll find out the winners of these awards on June 26th when the NBA has it’s first ever awards show hosted by Drake.

I’m going with Antetokounmpo as most improved, Gordon as sixth man, Leonard as defensive player, Embiid to win best rookie, D’Antoni as best coach and Westbrook as M.V.P. Feel free to leave your picks in the comment section and we’ll see how we do at the end of next month.

Of course as soon as the final three for M.V.P. where announced the media went nuts that LeBron James wasn’t one of the final three. If you where to out James into the final three; who would you take out? Westbrook and Harden where locks as M.V.P. finalist; so it would have to be Leonard. Now you have to remember that this is a regular season award; so the playoffs have nothing to do with who wins this. Let’s take a look at the stats and then you can decide.

Both James and Leonard played in 74 games during the 2016-17 regular season. James averaged 26.4 points per game while Leonard was at 25.5. James grabbed 8.6 rebounds per game while Leonard was at 5.8. James handed out 8.7 assists per game while Leonard handed out 3.5 per game. James averaged 1.2 steals per game while Leonard had 1.8 per game. James blocked 0.59 shots per game while Leonard blocked 0.7. James shot 54.8% from the field, 36.3% from behind the 3-point line and 67% from the free throw line. Leonard shot 48.5% from the field, 38.1% from behind the 3-point line and 88% from the free throw line. So looking at the stats it appears that James was a little better offensive player, but Leonard may be the better shooter. Leonard looks to be the better defender and is considered one of the top defensive players in the NBA. Now the James led Cavaliers where 51-31 during the regular season while Leonard’s San Antonio team went 61-21 for the regular season. So the decision might come down to how the team did during the regular season. Leonard’s team was 10 wins better than James team was and they play in the much tougher Western Conference. While it’s a difficult call to make and I could’ve seen the NBA just going with four players I think if you look at the stats and how the teams performed led by these two players they made the right choice. You have to understand that Leonard doesn’t carry the name value that James does and this is where the controversy will come from.

The second leg of the Triple Crown of horse racing, the Preakness Stakes, will be run on Saturday at Pimlico Race Track in Baltimore.

Kentucky Derby winner Always Dreaming is the Preakness favorite at 4 to 5. Classic Empire is at 3 to 1 odds while Lookin at Lee is 10 to 1. There are only 10 horses scheduled to run in the Preakness and I’m sure the odds will change quite a bit before the horse run out of the starting gate. Here are the rest of the horses. Cloud Computing 12 to 1, Gunnevera 15 to 1, Conquest Mo Money 15 to 1, Hence 20 to 1, Multiplier 30 to 1, Term of Art 30 to 1 and Senior Investment 30 to 1.

Now I didn’t do so well with my Kentucky Derby pick, but I’ll give it another shot for the Preakness. I’m going to go with Hence to win the Preakness Stakes.

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How was your week

Posted: May 6, 2017 by Sports Time Radio in Auto Racing, baseball, horse racing, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

Joey Logano picked up his first win of the of the NASCAR season as he won last Sunday’s Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Speedway, but the win will not count towards the post season for Logano and his #22 team. On Thursday NASCAR issued an L1 level penalty to Team Penske’s No. 22 team for a rear suspension violation discovered during teardown. The penalty carries multiple consequences, which includes making  Logano’s win at Richmond on Sunday encumbered. What the encumbered win means is that Logano cannot use the Richmond win as consideration for an automatic playoff spot. Should Logano still make the postseason, the five playoff points that come with a victory would not apply for Richmond. The official race record will still list Logano as the winner. Additional penalties are a $50,000 fine and two-race suspension for crew chief Todd Gordon, and the loss of 25 driver points and 25 owner points. Team Penske announced it would not appeal the penalties.

There was also a penalty accessed to Richmond 3rd place finisher Denny Hamlin and his Joe Gibbs Racing #11 team, but it was nowhere near as stiff as Logano’s. During a post race check Hamlin’s car was found to have a unsecured lug nut on one of the tires. Hamlin’s crew chief Mike Wheeler was handed a $10,000 fine after one lug nut was found to be improperly secured.

Tomorrow the Monster Energy NASCAR series has the GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway.

Talladega is a restrictor plate race; so that has to bring everyone to the thought of this race being the one that the retiring Dale Earnhardt Jr. can get a win a qualify for “The Chase”. Earnhardt Jr. is still one of the best if not the best restrictor plate racer in the Monster Energy Series and he’s always a good choice to win at Talladega, but he didn’t have a great practice session yesterday; so we’ll have to see how he does in qualifying today.

While we’re on the subject of racing; the race for the triple crown starts with the running of the 143rd Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs today. The favorite to win right now is Classic Empire who has 4-1 odds and is being ridden by Julien R. Leparoux. There are also two horses who’s odds are close to Classic Empire’s at 5-1. You can get McCracken or Always Dreaming at those 5-1 odds. Irish War Cry is the only other horse with betting odds under 15-1 as he’s currently at 6-1. So betting wise it looks as though it’s a four horse race.

Now I’ll be the first to tell you I know absolutely nothing about horse racing or how to bet on it, but I’m picking Girvin to win today. Girvin is currently at 15-1 odds and is being ridden by Mike E. Smith. Girvin will start the race out of gate #7 and let’s face it; how can I not pick a horse who’s named after former NBA star George Gervin.

The Baltimore Orioles won their game Friday night 4-2 over the Chicago White Sox, but when it came time to close the game out the Orioles where without closer Zach Britton who wasn’t in their bullpen last night. Not Britton was just activated from the disabled list on Tuesday. Britton went on the disabled list on April 18th with left forearm strain and it appears as though Britton may have had a recurrence of the injury. Britton did pitch a scoreless inning Tuesday night and then again Thursday night, but was unavailable last night due to the injury flare up. Britton underwent an MRI on his pitching arm and Baltimore’s manager Buck Showalter said “There’s some talk about the next step to take with him.” Brad Brach assumed the closer role for the Orioles last night just like he did when Britton was on the disabled list. Brach entered Friday nights game with a three run lead and got the save despite allowing a run on two hits to the White Sox in the 9th inning.

With an odd set of circumstances behind it the Orioles lost their starting pitcher in last nights game after he record two outs. Wade Miley made the start for the Orioles against the White Sox last night and threw just 12 pitches as he was hit by line drives off the bats of consecutive White Sox hitters. Miley gave up three hits, but no runs in what was the shortest start of his career at 2/3rd on an inning. Miley left the game with what the Orioles are calling a left wrist contusion. White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu was the first player to hit Miley with a line drive as he hit a ball that caught Miley on his pitching hand. Baltimore’s trainer came out and examined Miley, but Miley convinced him that he was okay and was allowed to stay in the game. Then two pitches last White Sox outfielder Avisail Garcia hit a liner back up the middle that caught Miley in the back of his left leg. Miley walked off the field under his own power as Gabriel Ynoa came out of the Orioles bullpen to retire the side with no runs being allowed. It was reported that the baseball Abreu hit had an exit velocity of 103 m.p.h. while the baseball Garcia hit was clocked at 102 m.p.h.

Now I played a lot of baseball growing up and now I watch way too much baseball and I’ve never seen a pitcher get hit in consecutive at bats like that. Please leave me a comment and let me know if you every seen this happen in a baseball game.

There was another odd set of pitcher injuries last night in the Seattle Mariners/Texas Rangers game. In the 11th inning of what turned out to be a 3-1 Texas win in 13 innings the Mariners lost two pitchers to injury on consecutive batters. Jean Machi was removed from the game with two outs in the Top of the 11th after walking Carlos Gomez. Evan Marshall came out of the Seattle bullpen and was given all the time he needed to warm up since Machi left the game do to an injury. On the second pitch Marshall threw to the Rangers Joey Gallo he screamed in pain grabbed the back of his right leg and went down. Marshall ended up having to be helped off the field and was diagnosed with a hamstring injury. Mariners manager Scott Servais told reporters after the game that Machi had a nerve issue in his right thumb that made it difficult to feel the baseball.

Now there have been a ton of pitcher injuries early this season, but these are two of the oddest set of injuries I’ve ever seen.

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While it is just May as we like to say on the podcast May is coming to an end next week. When the calendar turns to June will you worry about your favorite baseball team then? I’m think if you’re a fan of the New York Mets you might want to get started a little early. The Mets are currently 23-18 and in 3rd place in the National League East just 2 1/2 games behind the division leading Washington Nationals.

Is there possible an issue with the Mets starting rotation? The team is being built around it’s young pitching and those young pitchers did get the Mets into the World Series last season. There have been some cracks in that young pitching foundation that the Mets need to keep their eye on. Steven Matz made his 7th start last night after being skipped in the rotation because of elbow soreness. Even with 11 days off Matz pitched 7 innings giving up 3 hits, 2 earned runs and striking out 8 while picking up the win in the Mets 3-2 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers. Matz made 9 starts for the Mets last season and 3 of those where in the post season. Matz is 6-1 this season with an ERA of 2.81 in his 7 starts, but at 241 years old will the Mets have to watch his innings as the season moves along. While there doesn’t seem to be any injury concerns with Jacob deGrom his velocity seems to be a little down in his last couple of starts; which where no decisions. deGrom did miss a couple of starts earlier this season as he left the team to attend to a medical issue with his newborn son. He’s made 3 starts since returning to the Mets and is 0-1 after winning his first 3 starts of the season. deGrom’s ERA is 2.50 on the season and you have to wonder if it’s just a case of him building up his arm strength again, but it is something the Mets have to watch. Then there’s Mat Harvey. Harvey started on Thursday night against the division leading Nationals. He lasted just 2 2/3rd of an inning, gave up 8 hits, 9 runs 6 of them earned while walking 2 and striking out 2. Harvey was boo’d off the field when Mets manager Terry Collins came out to remove him from the game. Harvey hasn’t last more than 6 innings in any of his 9 starts this season. Harvey is 3-6 and his ERA is 5.77 in his 9 starts this season. There have been no reports about any injuries, but if you remember just a few weeks back Harvey himself said he felt a little off was the term he used. Harvey had that terrible outing against the Nationals, but his start before that wasn’t much either. He pitched 5 2/3rd innings while giving up 5 earned runs on 11 hits, but struck out 6 against the Colorado Rockies. I don;t think that anyone noticed that start because it was in Coors Field and many pitchers have had trouble there. According to reports that came out on Friday Harvey will not be skipped in the rotation and is due t make his next start against the Nationals again on Tuesday, May 24th; this time the game is in Washington’s Nationals Park.Bartolo Colon and Noah Syndergaard are the other two pitchers holding down the Mets rotation. Colon has made 8 starts and is 3-3 with an ERA of 3.75, There’s nothing wrong with those numbers out of a 5th starter especially when you find out that pitcher is 42 years old. Is Syndergarrd the ace of this staff? He’s 4-2 in 8 starts, but has the lowest ERA among the starers at 2.19. 7 of his 8 starts have been quality starts and he’s struck out 65 batters while walking just 9 on the season. Syndergaard has a WHIP of 0.99 and his K/9 or strikeouts per 9 innings ratio is 10.97 this season. You’d think that talent like tis can easily get the Mets back into the playoffs and don;t forget that Zack Wheeler is due to return in a couple of weeks. Wheeler had Tommy John surgery last season and is finishing up his recovery. I am wondering if some of the struggles this young Mets staff has had reminded any long time fans of the team of the Jason Isringhausen, Paul Wilson, Bill Pulsipher pitching trio that the Mets where going to be built around in the late 90’s.

The Tampa Bay Lighting jumped out to a 4-0 lead last night and looked as though they’d easily even up there Eastern Conference Finals series with the Pittsburgh Penguins at 2 games apiece. While the Lighting did even up the series with the Penguins there was nothing easy about it. Tampa bay got goals from Ryan Callahan and Andrew Sustr in the 1st period t take a 2-0 lead. Callahan’s goal came 27 seconds into the game. Tampa Bay added 2 more goals in the 2nd period as Jonathan Drouin and Tyler Johnson put the puck in the net and effectively ended the night of Pittsburgh starting goaltender Matt Murray. With Marc-Andre Fleury back in goal the Penguins seem to get a little lift even down 4-0. Phil Kessel got the Penguins on the scoreboard at 1:18 of the 3rd period with a goal. Play settled down for about 10 minutes and then Evgeni Malkin scored the Penguins 2nd goal of the period. It’s still 4-2 Lighting; so there was no need for their fans to panic; yet. When Chris Kunitz scored just after the 13 minute mark of the period to make it a 1-goal game at 4-3 I’m sure Lighting fans where worried. Fleury was pulled for the extra skater with about 4 minutes left in the game, but Andrei Vasilevskiy held on in goal for Tampa Bay and they took Game 4.

Game 5 is Sunday night as the series heads back to Pittsburgh’s Consol Energy Center. Puck drop is scheduled for 8:00 p.m.

The second leg of horse racing Triple-Crown The Preakness Stakes is today. Kentucky Derby winner Nyquist is the favorite at 3 to 5. Can Nyquist win here? There is another horse that while not the betting favorite is close. Exaggerator is going off at 3 to 1. I believe I heard that these 2 horses have matched up 4 times and Nyquist has won all 4 of those races. Will today be the day Exaggerator finally beats Nyquist or will Nyquist move on to the Belmont Stakes with a chance t win the Triple-Crown. I know everyone is just waiting for my pick since I know so much about horse racing. I decided that I’m going with Cherry Wine at 20 to 1 to win the Preakness. That of course menas stay as far away from that horse as possible.

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Will we see our first Triple Crown winner since 1978 (Affirmed) today at the Belmont Stakes when American Pharoah takes the race track?  At this point American Pharoah needs little introduction. He won the Kentucky Derby by a length and the Preakness Stakes by seven. His top competition in those races, Dortmund and Firing Line, are both skipping the Belmont, making American Pharoah an overwhelming favorite (3/5 betting odds) at the Belmont. He lost the first race he entered, but has won all six since. His name, by the way, is misspelled because it was entered incorrectly into an Internet registry, so he was stuck with it. Dan the Man and Schuamburg Stu believe American Pharoah will win the Belmont Stakes and the Triple Crown so he is their pick to win the race. Frosted is the other favorite at 5/1 and he’s Mr. Fantasy’s choice to win. Frosted Wood Memorial in April, but has had several good showings, including a fourth-place finish in the Kentucky Derby. Joel Rosario is riding Frosted and he did win last years Belmont Stakes on Tonalist. As you can tell my co-hosts didn’t reach while looking for a Belmont winner as they took the favorite and the the horse with the 2nd best odds. I on the other hand have decided to go with Keen Ice who is a 20/1 shot going into the race. Keen Ice finished 7th in the Kentucky Derby, but has a strong bloodline f or the Belmont. Curlin, his sire, finished second in the Belmont. There are a total of 8 horses running in the Belmont Stakes. Besides are picks here are the other horses in today’s race. Materiality (6/1), Mubtaahij (10/1), Madefromlucky (12/1), Tale of Verve (15/1) and Frammento (30/1). Who’s your pick?

Thursday morning I got home and was really looking forward to seeing the highlights of Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals. As I flipped from morning sports show to morning sports show I was surprised to find that no one was really giving much coverage to Game 1 if at any at all. Of course since ESPN and Fox Sports don’t televise NHL hockey they could care less that the Stanley Cup finals are being played. They’ll bury the story in the middle of their highlight shows were no one may even notice they’re talking about it. Oddly though both network will complain that hockey doesn’t get the coverage it deserves, but yet they don’t cover it. I was able to watch the first 2 periods of Game 1 on television and heard the 3rd period on the radio; so I was able to hear the entire game, but I was hoping to see the 3rd period highlights. Later in the day I was finally able to find some highlights on Comcast Sportsnet which focus on the Chicago teams.

If you saw Game 1 you had to come away thinking that the Tampa Bay Lighting were the better team and even though they were for the most part of Game 1 they ended up losing the game 2-1. Tampa bay went into the 3rd period with a 1-0 lead and had controlled quite a bit of the game, but in the 3rd period they appeared to be playing not to lose instead of playing to win. You have to wonder if nerves or inexperience or possibly both got to the Lighting in that 3rd period. Alex Killorn gave Tampa Bay the lead in the 1st period with a great redirection of the puck by Corey Crawford. Anton Stralman and   Valtteri Filppula assisted on Killron’s goal. That was the only goal of the 1st period; so Tampa Bay took a 1-0 into the dressing room. Neither team was able to put the puck in the back of the net in the 2nd period; so Tampa Bay continued to lead the game 1-0. Teuvo Teravainen was finally able to get the Blackhawks on the scoreboard getting the puck pass Tampa bay goalie Ben Bishop and evening the game at 1-1. Duncan Keith and Andrew Shaw assisted on Teravainen’s goal. It looked as though we were going to get an overtime, but Antoine Vermette scored the game winning goal about 15 minutes into the 3rd period on an assist from Teravainen to put the Blackhawks ahead 2-1 which is how the game ended.

Both goaltenders played well as Crawford stopped 22 of the 23 shots he faced while Bishop stopped 19 of 21 shots in goal for the Lighting. Keith as always was the Blackhawks leader in minutes played with 29:15 and Stralman was the Lighting’s minutes leader with 25:29. You’ll hear the announcers say that the Blackhawks are a finesse team, but Brent Seabrook was credited with 7 hits to lead the game in that category.Ondrej Palat was Tampa bay’s leader in hits with 5. Niklas Hjalmarsson of Chicago and Jason Garrison of Tampa Bay each blocked 4 shots to lead their teams in that category. Game 2 is tonight (Saturday) in Tampa Bay.

Now yesterday (Friday) I didn’t have any issues at all finding highlights from Game 1 of the NBA finals game that Golden State won 108-100 in overtime over the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavaliers jumped ahead by 10 points at the end of the 1st quarter and looked like they might run away with Game 1. Golden State got themselves back into the game cutting the Cavaliers lead to 3 points going into halftime at 51-48. The game was even by the end of the 3rd quarter at 73 all. Of course the game was tied at 98 apiece at the end of regulation. LeBron James had a chance to win the game for Cleveland at the end of regulation, but missed a tough shot as time ran out. Overtime seemed almost like a different game as Golden State out scored Cleveland 10-2 in the overtime quarter and won 108-100.

Cleveland’s point guard Kyrie Irving limped to the locker room after aggravating his troublesome left knee in overtime. It was later found out that Irving broke his left knee cap. He’ll have surgery and is out for the rest of the finals series. Irving will now join Kevin Love and Andersen Varejao on the sidelines for Cleveland. Is Irving’s injury going to turn out to be too much for Cleveland to overcome. The NBA finals gets the extra day off between game 1 & 2; so they’ll take the court tomorrow (Sunday) for Game 2. Irving’s injury will add even more to LeBron’s work load and going against the team that had the best record in the NBA this season will it be too much for the best player in the NBA to handle. Since the NBA is an offensive league people forget just how good of a defensive team Golden State is. James did score 44 points in Game 1, but without Irving in the line up Golden State will be able to adjust a little more to LeBron and that may make his life a little tougher. It appeared that Golden State was the better team going into this series and with Cleveland losing it’s 2nd best player for the series the question may become; will they be to win a game?

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So how was your week?

Let’s go ahead and start off with the Sports Time Radio fantasy players of the week for Week 6. We went with two Cleveland Indians this week 2nd baseman Jason Kipnis and Corey Kluber. I know it’s early in the season, but it’s the first time we’ve had winners from the same team.

Here’s how we stand right now with our teams of hitting pitchers:

Dan the Man’s team is 10/66 .152 0 HR’s 4 RBI’s and 29 K’s

Mr. Fantasy’s team is 17/85 .200 0 HR’s 2 RBI’s and 26 K’s

My team is 12/82 .146 1 HR 6 RBI’s and 34 K’s

The NHL is in it’s conference finals and both series are tied 1-1 with Game 3 of the New York Rangers vs. the Tampa Bay Lighting is tonight. The series has moved to Tampa Bay and if they can hold home ice they’ll move on to the Stanley Cup finals. The Rangers won Game 1 of the series 2-1, but Tampa Bay took Game 2 by putting up 6 goals in a 6-2 win. The Western conference series is moving to Chicago for Game 3 on Thursday night. The Anaheim Ducks took Game 1 by scoring 2 goals in the 3rd period and pulling away to a 4-1 win. Last night the Chicago Blackhawks evened the series with a 3-2 win in 3 overtimes. At 16:12 of the third overtime Marcus Krueger scored the game winner for the Blackhawks. and ended what was the longest game in Blackhawks history. Corey Crawford made 62 saves for Chicago and  Frederik Andersen made 56 saves for Anaheim. It will be interesting to see how these two teams bounce back with just one day off before Game 3.

The NBA has also just started it’s conference finals, but only the Western conference has gotten under way with the Golden State Warriors taking Game 1  110-106 over the Houston Rockets. Stephan Curry lead all scorers with 34 points making 6 – 11 from behind the 3-point line. Shaun Livingston (18), Klay Thompson (15), Harrison Barnes (14) and Draymond Green (13) all scored double figures for Golden State. Green also grabbed 12 rebounds and was just 2 assists shy of a triple double as he had 8 assists. The Rockets were led by James Harden with 28 points, Trevor Ariza had 20 points and Josh Smith had 17 points. Even though he injured a knee and played just a little over 26 minutes Dwight Howard led the Rockets with 13 rebounds. Harden added 11 rebounds and missed his triple double by just 1 assists as he led the Rockets with 9 assists in the game. The Rockets had the lead after one quarter at 31-24, but Golden State bounced back to take a 58-55 lead at halftime. Golden State added 2 points to their lead after 3 quarters 84-79. The Rockets did out score the Warriors in the final period 27 to 26, but it wasn’t enough to get a win. With the next game on Thursday you have to wonder if Howard will be ready to play. If you’re a Rockets fan are you trying to figure out if Howard doesn’t get injured would you of stolen Game 1. Game 1 of the Eastern conference finals starts tonight in Atlanta as the Atlanta Hawks host the Cleveland Cavaliers. Game 2 is Friday May 22nd in Atlanta as well. The series seems to be being billed as Atlanta’s team concept against LeBron James or I saw someone call it “Hero Ball”. 

The NBA had it’s draft lottery last night and it was the Los Angeles Lakers who moved up at the expense of the New York Knicks. Los Angeles moved up from #4 to the #2 pick while it was New York that fell from #2 to #4. New York had the 2nd best odds going into the lottery last night, but fell to the 4th pick in the draft. Everything else for the NBA lottery held true to form. The Minnesota Timberwovles got the #1 pick, the Lakers are #2, the Philadelphia 76ers are #3, the Knicks are #4, the Orlando Magic are #5, the Sacramento Kings are #6, the Denver Nuggets are #7, the Detroit Pistons are #8, the Charlotte Hornets are #9, the Miami Heat are #10, the Indiana Pacers are #11. the Utah Jazz are #12, the Phoenix Suns are #13 and the Oklahoma City Thunder got the last spot in the draft lottery at #14. The Lakers appear to be the big winner coming out of last night as they along with the Timberwolves will get either Jahlil Okafor or Karl-Anthony Towns at the top of the draft. The Knicks where one of the teams that lost out last night, but in a way so did the 76ers. While Philadelphia did land the 3rd pick most experts have said that there is a drop off between the 2nd and 3rd best players in this draft. Not only that, but Philadelphia had a chance to leave the lottery with 3 lottery picks. If the Lakers pick would’ve landed outside of the Top 5 it would’ve went to the 76ers as part of an earlier trade. Of course we know now that the Lakers are picking 2nd; so they get to keep that draft pick. The 76ers also had a deal with the Heat and if the Miami draft pick would’ve fallen out of the Top 10 Philadelphia would’ve gotten that pick as well. Miami landed right at #10 in the draft and they get to keep their draft pick as well.

The most interesting player in the upcoming NBA draft may be Emmanuel Mudiay who played last season in China.  Mudiay was born in the Republic of Congo, was living in Texas and planned to attend SMU, then signed a pro contract in China amid claims (that his family denied) the move was to escape NCAA heat on academic issues. While an ankle injury cost him most of the season in Guangdong, a healthy Mudiay will pop at the select few individual workouts he performs.

Schaumburg Stu went with the favorite American Pharoah to win the Preakness and he cam through for him winning the 2nd leg of the Triple Crown. I went with Divining Rod who finished 3rd. Mr. Fantasy’s horse Mr. Z ended up in 5th place and Dan the Man’s pick Firing Line finished in 7th place out of 8 horses.  American Pharoah became the 14th horse since 1978 to take the Kentucky Derby-Preakness Stakes and now the question is; can he win the Belmont Stakes?

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