The Viral Roundup – Final (Four) Fantasy Edition
Good morning! How was your weekend? That’s [great/awful] to hear! We have some fun banter back and forth, don’t we? Welcome to the March 30, 2015 go-around of The Viral Roundup. We’re the internet’s one-stop shop for all the big news, big buzz and big developments headlining the world of sports you’re waking up to. In this Happy Monday edition: Class is dismissed for some college squads, the Spurs continue their winning ways and the Bruins take things to OT versus Carolina.
Did You Hear?
It’s official: College hoops has its Final Four. Regulation time wasn’t enough to sort out a winner between #7 Michigan State and #4 Louisville. Overtime was required for the Spartans to push past the Cardinals with a final score of 76-70. Michigan State’s victory plunks coach Tom Izzo in his 7th Final Four and keeps the school on the path to winning their first national basketball title since 2000. Louisville senior Wayne Blackshear put up a monster game in defeat, scoring 28 points for the Cardinals.
Did You See?
BREAKING: Floyd “Money” Mayweather is rich. Like, “can probably order dessert after a meal” rich. Would you like to see ridiculous collection of cars the boxing superstar owns? There’s not a Dodge Neon in the bunch. A new video has arrived online where Floyd’s chauffeur (Bruce Miller a.k.a Bruce The Driver) offers a peek at the fleet of automobiles owned by the mega-wealthy athlete. It’s a safe bet to suggest Floyd might have a few additions after the Mayweather/Pacquiao superfight.
Did You Know?
- Michigan State’s opponent on Saturday will be… Coach K and the Duke Blue Devils. #1 Duke cruised past #2 Gonzaga to earn yet another Final Four appearance. A three point favourite going in, the Blue Devils handily defeated the Bulldogs 66-52. Justise Winslow, Matt Jones, Tyus Jones and Quinn Cook all had double digits points in the victory and Duke kept things extra tidy by only offering up three turnovers throughout the course of the game.
- Oddsmakers still have Kentucky as the favourite to take home the NCAA title. The Wildcats are a -150 bet to end their season undefeated. Duke currently sits as a +300 bet to win it all, Wisconsin’s right behind as a +400 bet and Michigan State is the biggest underdog at +800 on the futures board.
- Washington couldn’t work any magic at home against a hot Hot HOT Houston Rockets squad. The Rockets, favoured by 2 and a half points going in, emerged with the 99-91 victory over the Wizards thanks in large part to quality showings from James Harden and Corey Brewer. (Harden’s weak 1-6 shooting from three point land? Not a quality showing.) Houston’s currently slugging it with Memphis in the standings to nab the Western Conference’s #2 seed. Meanwhile, Washington’s snuggly placed in the #5 spot in the East. John Wall & Co. will face an easier opponent on Wednesday when the Wizards host the lowly Philadelphia 76ers.
- Memphis were no match for the surging Spurs in San Antonio. Kawhi Leonard put in a strong performance, scoring 25 and collecting 10 rebounds in the 103-89 home victory over the Grizzlies. Both teams are on three game streaks, albeit in opposite directions. San Antonio’s won three straight and Memphis has chalked up 3 Ls in a row. Memphis will look to shake out of that funk and pull themselves back into the #2 spot in the West against Sacramento tonight.
- Brooklyn are picking up steam at the right time. The Nets notched their third consecutive victory yesterday with a 107-99 win over the pitiful Los Angeles Lakers. Brooklyn’s win and Boston’s 119-106 defeat at the hands of the Clippers has the Nets gripping onto the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. By the way, only five teams in the East can claim they’re above .500.
- Jonathan Toews may be a hometown hero in Winnipeg, but that doesn’t mean he’ll shy away from breaking some hearts at the MTS Centre. The Blackhawks captain deflected a Niklas Hjalmarsson shot with 31 seconds remaining in regulation to give Chicago a 4-3 lead/victory over Winnipeg on Sunday night, picking up a valuable two points in the standings while leaving their Central Division rival with none. The W pulls the Hawks out of the Wildcard position and back into the Top 3 in the division.
- Nashville’s four game winning streak is no more. The Predators lost big at home to playoff hungry Calgary, going down 5-2 to the Flames. Jiri Hudler’s excellent 2014-2015 campaign rolls on with a goal and two assists generated by Czech veteran. The Flames will try to build on their momentum with a showdown against the Stars in Dallas.
- It took longer than 60 minutes, but Boston was able to claim two points in their pursuit of the postseason. Tukka Rask turned aside 30 shots and David Pastrnak scored the OT winner that gave the Bruins a 2-1 win over the lottery bound Carolina Hurricanes.
- Things were not quite as rosy for the suddenly slipping Ottawa Senators. Fellow playoff hopefuls Florida thumped the Sens with no remorse on Sunday, skating away with an important 4-2 victory. Ageless wonder Jaromir Jagr netted two in the win (career goals 719 and 720 if you’re keeping track) with Dan Ellis turning in an admirable performance between the pipes. Once the Zamboni fumes cleared on yesterday’s action, the Panthers found themselves only one point below the Senators in the East’s playoff Jenga tower. The Bruins currently hold the final Wildcard spot and have a three point gap over Ottawa. Things will get shaken up again on Tuesday when the Bruins and Panthers square off in Beantown.
- The Capitals creamed the Rangers 5-2 in a Manhattan matinee meeting. Alex Ovechkin potted a pair (he’s only one goal away from 50) and Braden Holtby stopped 23 shots in the decisive victory. The Rangers will look to put their back-to-back weekend losses behind them against the Jets on Tuesday.
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