The Viral Roundup – Habgoblins Edition
Hello! Welcome to another TGIF go-around of The Viral Roundup. (Shout-out to Earl Sinclair!) We’re your daily one-stop shop for all the big news, big buzz and big developments bubbling up in the world of sports. If it’s worth talking about, we’ve got it served up for you in bite-size chunklets. In today’s edition: Minnesota and Montreal fight to stay alive, Alex Rodriguez climbs to fourth place in the career homer rankings and the Minnesota Twins keep on playing the role of inhospitable hosts.
Did You Hear?
Yes, the Canadiens are still alive. Displaying this elusive lil’ thing called offense for the first time in the series, Montreal hammered Tampa Bay in a 6-2 survival statement game. (The winning side was listed as a +130 road underdog going in.) Habs forward Max Pacioretty notched a goal on the penalty kill plus two helpers and Carey Price turned away 22 shots that were headed his way. Bolts netminder Ben Bishop was yanked after giving up three goals on 14 shots and his replacement Andrei Vasilevsky fared somewhat better making more saves but letting in the same amount of lamp lighters. The series now shifts to 3-1 Tampa with Game 5 going down in Montreal on Saturday.
Did You See?
The Cleveland Cavaliers are in preparation mode for tonight’s Game 3 in the Windy City, but that wasn’t the only reason the Cavs were in the news on May 7. An insane promo video for the club popped up online and North America collectively screamed “what the **** are you doing?” at the clip. The pump-up video is a Dirty Dancing parody (finger on the pulse, guys) that features a furious boyfriend throwing his girlfriend across the room when she reveals she’s a Bulls fan. After she’s tossed, the girlfriend reluctantly agrees to root for Cleveland. The Cavs were quickly slammed for running an in-game video centered around a domestic violence gag and the franchise has since apologized. Watch the bats*** madness below.
Did You Know?
- The Wild are finished. The Chicago Blackhawks successfully completed their 2nd Round sweep of Minnesota, capping off the punting with a tight 4-3 victory in St. Paul. Hawks captain Jonathan Toews notched a pair of assists in the win and the club returns to the Western Conference Finals for the third consecutive season. The Wild fought hard in the 3rd frame with two goals coming with under four minutes remaining. One can only wonder what would have happened if Thomas Vanek hadn’t disappeared for Minnesota in the postseason. Chicago can shift into rest mode and wait for the outcome of the Flames/Ducks series that has at least two more games to go.
- John Wall’s wrist is not looking so hot. The Washington Wizards superstar has five non-displaced fractures in his left wrist and hand with no clear timetable on when he’ll return to the lineup. The guard is an absolutely vital part of the team’s starting lineup, one that’s set to host the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday night to break up a 1-1 series tie.
- Bulls guard Jimmy Butler has been chosen as the National Basketball Association’s Most Improved Player. The Marquette product beat out Golden State’s Draymond Green and Utah big man Rudy Gobert to earn the honour. Butler’s third year in the NBA featured an All-Star appearance in a season that saw the swingman boost his points per game total by seven points.
- The Yanks brass might not be nutty over it, but A-Rod has socked homer 661. Whether or not they pony up the dough initially promised in his contract is a whole other story. New York, a one and a half run home favourite, squeezed past Balitmore 4-3. Rodriguez’s 3rd inning round-tripper puts the controversial slugger past Willie Mays for fourth on the all-time home run list. (Next up? Babe Ruth at 714.) Both clubs will do battle again tonight.
- The Twins win again. Minnesota improved to 12-5 at home thanks to a hard fought 6-5 win over the Oakland A’s. Twins LF Eduardo Escobar went 1-3 with a walk, a run and two RBI, while Ricky Nolasco escaped with his second positive decision of 2015. Athletics 1B Ike Davis socked a homer in a losing cause. Minnesota travels to Cleveland today to an AL Central set versus the Indians and the A’s head to the Pacific Northwest to clash with the Mariners.
- White Sox batters will be seeing visions of Kyle Lobstein in their sleep. The Tigers starter held Chicago to a sparse five hits over seven innings and some change in a 4-1 Detroit win. The victory bailed Motown out of getting swept in the three game series. The Tigers will now host a set versus the defending AL champs from Kansas City and Chicago gears up for an interleague home stand against the Cincinnati Reds.
- The Cards sent their fans home happy in matinee action. John Lackey racked up 10 Ks in a 5-1 St. Louis victory over the club’s hated rivals from Chicago. Cardinals RF Jason Heyward had a remarkable outing versus the Cubs going 3-4 with three runs, an RBI and a stolen base to his name. St. Louis venture off to Pittsburgh for tomorrow’s series opener against the Pirates and the Cubs continue their road swing with a set of dates in Milwaukee.
- It was not an easy day to be on the mound as a Brewer. The Dodgers brutalized their hosts to the tune of 14-4. Los Angeles C Yasmani Grandal had a whale of a game. The 26-year-old went 4-4 with two homers, three runs and eight runs batted in. 3B Alex Guerrero also cranked one over the wall in the blowout. The Brewers have had a terrible habit of giving up jacks in 2015. Milwaukee has been victimized for a Majors-worst 42 long balls in 2015.
- The Dallas Cowboys have made another controversial personnel move. ESPN reports that the franchise has signed LSU offensive tackle La’el Collins. Originally projected as a likely first round draft pick, Collins went unselected as he was in the process of being investigated in connection to the shooting death of his former girlfriend Brittney Mills. (Police say Collins is not a suspect in the case.) The Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins were also said to have been interested in signing Collins.
- The IIHF World Hockey Championship boasted a shocking result in Thursday’s action. For the first time in the tournament’s history, the U.S. national squad suffered an L at the hands of Belarus. KHL vet Alexi Kalyuzhny potted two markers in a 5-2 win that saw American netminder turn in a dreadful performance that included five pucks past him on a meager 23 shots.
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