The Viral Roundup – Storm Watch Edition
Hello! Welcome to another sun-kissed go-around of The Viral Roundup. We’re your daily one-stop shop for all the big news, big buzz and big developments headlining a new day in sports. If it’s worth talking/tweeting/texting about, we’ve got it tucked in here. In today’s edition: Madison Square Garden plays host to a Lightning storm, Philly’s found their next head coach and minds are blown by one of the most eye-popping dunks in the history of time.
Did You Hear?
Even kings can get dethroned. Tampa Bay gave Henrik Lundqvist fits on Monday night lighting the lamp for six goals in a 6-2 Game 2 throttling that splits the Eastern Conference final at 1-1. Tyler Johnson notched the first hat trick in the history of the franchise and Ben Bishop turned away 35 shots in this Bolts triumph over New York. Rangers forward Mats Zuccarello remains out of the lineup with a head injury sustained at the close of Round 1. The action resumes on Wednesday with Game 3 going down in the Sunshine State.
Did You See?
The NBA Playoffs took a bit of breather yesterday but that doesn’t mean we don’t have an insane hoops highlight to showcase. Jordan Kilganon pulled off an insane “Lost and Found” jam that will turn your brain into Pop Rocks and Coke. It’s like this 6’1 dunk maestro has escaped a video game or something. It’s outrageous and definitely worth a watch.
Did You Know?
- The next head coach of the Philadelphia Flyers is… Dave Hakstol. The University of North Dakota coach has been tapped as the man that will take over fired former bench boss Craig Berube’s position with the club. The 46-year-old guided his college squad into the NCAA tournament in all of his eleven seasons with the franchise and that run includes seven Frozen Four appearances. Flyers GM Ron Hextall’s son, Brett, was among the players Hakstol coached during his UND tenure.
- Sportsnet is reporting that Todd McLellan will be taking over behind the bench in Edmonton. The official announcement is expected to arrive this week. McLellan has coached in San Jose for the past seven years before parting ways with the franchise and he’s also coming off a IIHF World Championship triumph with the Canadian national team. The Oilers have been a league laughingstock for an extended stretch, but with a #1 draft pick and new GM Peter Chiarelli in the cards things appear to be perking up.
- Some light grumblng has been made of how the bulk of the Russian national team skipped the trophy/anthem portion of Sunday’s post-game celebration. A handful of players (like Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin) tried to make the team stay but were unsuccessful. Ilya Kovalchuk has been accused of being the main man directing Russia off the ice. The IIHF were not happy about this and have declared that some variety of punishment will be handed down.
- Do you believe in the power of the Splash Brothers. Sportsbooks have Golden State pegged as a 4/7 favourite to win the NBA title this summer. Cleveland is considered the next most likely champ with 13/5 odds. Atlanta and Houston are considered the underdogs on the futures board. The Hawks are a 9/1 pick to win it all and the Rockets are positioned at 10/1. Golden State and Houston kick off their Western Conference battle tonight in Oakland and Atlanta hosts the Cavs in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Wednesday.
- The Marlins didn’t have to spend too much money on travel in the search for their next manager. Miami has determined that GM Dan Jennings will become the club’s new skipper. Jennings takes over for Mike Redmond who was fired on Sunday after a near no-hit loss to the Atlanta Braves. A fixture with the Marlins franchise since 2002, this will be the first time Jennings has taken on a coaching role since a high school gig in Alabama in the mid 80s. Considering the firing fetish possessed by Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria (five managers employed over six seasons), who knows what the future holds for this surprise hire. The first outing for Jennings came last night with an extra innings home loss to the Diamondbacks. Arizona edged out Miami 3-2 in 13 frames.
- Carlos Garcia returned from Sunday’s vicious beaning to make Detroit taste his pain. The Brewers leadoff man went yard at the top of the 1st to push Milwaukee to a 3-2 interleague victory over the Tigers. Aramis Ramirez also smacked a round-tripper in Monday’s win. Detroit currently sits one and a half games back of Kansas City for the top spot in the American League Central.
- It was a good Victoria Day for the Blue Jays. Toronto (a one and a half run home underdog) snapped a nasty five game losing day streak with a 10-6 victory over the Los Angeles Angels. Things got off to a rollicking start in the 2nd with a four run inning as the Jays bats came up big. Jose Bautista knocked his 7th homer of the season in the win while three Halos went yard in a losing cause. The two teams go toe-to-toe tonight at the Rogers Centre.
- Corey Kluber racked up 12 Ks and only gave up one earned run over 9 innings but that still wasn’t enough to give Cleveland the win. The White Sox squeezed past the Indians 2-1 in a 10 inning affair. Carlos Sanchez knocked in the winning run to provide Chicago with walkoff glory. The White Sox are now riding a six game winning streak.
- It looks like Brandon Spikes is returning to New England. ESPN is reporting that the 27-year-old Florida alum has inked a one year pact to rejoin the Patriots after a season with the Buffalo Bills. (The news comes as a bit of surprise considering the not always sunny relationship between Spikes and New England.) The changing defensive scheme in Buffalo with Rex Ryan as the new coach diminished the perceived value of Spikes to the Western New York football club which helped move this reunion along.
- Justin Smith has elected to pack it in. The 35-year-old defensive end was drafted fourth overall by the Cincinatti Bengals in 2001 and joined the San Francisco 49ers in 2008. As an NFL veteran, Smith ends his career with 87 sacks in 221 games played. Smith’s playing days were decorated with five Pro Bowl selections and in 2011 Sports Illustrated chose Smith as their Defensive Player of the Year. It’s definitely been a period of transition for the Niners defense. Linebackers Patrick Willis and Chris Borland have also announced their retirement in the offseason. The 49ers are currently listed as a 33/1 shot on the futures board to win the Super Bowl.
- The Miami Dolphins have signed starting pivot Ryan Tannehill to a contract extension. The 2012 first rounder is now inked to the squad through to 2020. In 2014, Tannehill threw for 4,045 yards with 392 completions and 27 passing touchdowns.
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