The Viral Roundup – Bloodbath In San Antonio Edition
Hi! Welcome to this Thursday morning edition of The Viral Roundup. It’s that special lil’ place on the internet where all of the day’s big news, big buzz and big developments have been compiled into a single shot recap of the important stuff. In today’s edition: The Thunder get pummeled in San Antonio, the Stars and Flames take it to the skills competition and Minnesota is joining the world of Major League Soccer.
Did You Hear?
Um, so about San Antonio entering Wednesday night as a seven and a half home favourite… The Spurs skipped simply beating the Thunder, instead they absolutely slaughtered their competition to the tune of 130-91. Tony Parker, Boris Diaw, Tim Duncan and Kawhi Leonard all scored in double digits in this throttling of OKC and obliterated the Thunder’s four game win streak in the process. Spring seems to be agreeing with San Antonio. The Spurs have won 11 of their last 14 and are listed as a 13/2 bet to win it all this summer. San Antonio plays Dallas on Friday night in a game with the power to shuffle the Western Conference standings.
Did You See?
Check out this guide to which throwback jerseys threw each individual state for a loop. Mitchell & Ness has showcased a map online featuring the best selling retro uniforms in the United States. Did you peg North Dakota has a hotbed for Fred Biletnikoff jerseys? Us either.
Did You Know?
- The NHL’s Western Conference playoff hunt continued to get muddier and messier (but not Messier) on Wednesday night. Tyler Seguin’s shootout heroics gave Dallas a road 4-3 win in their visit to Cowtown and helped keep the flicker of postseason hope alive for Dallas. Ales Hemsky scored two in regulation for the Stars, while Deryk Engelland notched his first two of the season on behalf of the Flames. Calgary currently sits in the precarious final Pacific Division playoff spot in the West and have the Kings nipping at their heels with a single point separating them from the defending Stanley Cup champs. Friday’s Flames/Wild showdown should be a doozy. (Y’know, provided you’re into measuring games on a doozy scale.)
- Kimmo Timonen’s return to Philly could have gone a bit better on the scoresheet, but the Finnish vet still received a standing O or six from the Flyers faithful. Timonen’s new club, the Chicago Blackhawks, were the victims of a 4-1 drubbing in the City of Brotherly Love. Wayne Simmonds notched his 28th marker and Claude Giroux hit 22 goals on the season in the decisive victory. Chicago will look to bounce back at home on Friday in a United Center clash with Columbus.
- The Spurs weren’t the only Western Conference contender laying the smack down on Wednesday night. The Los Angeles Clippers had little trouble crushing the Knicks at MSG. Chris Paul provided 16 assists and DeAndre Jordan shot a stellar seven-for-seven in the 111-80 trouncing of New York. The Clippers have racked up five straight wins and are slated by oddsmakers as an 18/1 shot to win the NBA Championship.
- The Pacers have gotten out of their misery spiral. Indiana snapped their six game losing streak last night with a hard-fought 103-101 victory in Washington. George Hill’s 29 points and 9 assists led the wall for the Pacers, while Wizards star John Wall put 34 on the scoreboard in a losing effort. Indiana currently shares the same record (31-40) as Boston in the Eastern Conference standings, a win-loss total that has the two clubs sharing the #8 spot with Brooklyn and Charlotte not too far behind. By the way, Washington are now on a four game losing slide.
- Memphis were no match for the Cavs on Wednesday night. Cleveland lit up their hosts 111-89 in a full-on thrashing. LeBron James, Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving all contributed 20 points or more in the win and can now boast four consecutive Ws. Even with the loss, Memphis continue to enjoy the #2 perch in the Western Conference standings. The Grizzlies are currently listed as a 12/1 bet to win the title in 2015.
- Portland left the wreckage of a five game losing streak behind in Salt Lake City last night. The Trail Blazers, a two and a half point road underdog, fought back from a 10 point deficit to emerge with a 92-89 win over the Utah Jazz. Portland point guard Damian Lillard put 23 on the board in his 40 minutes on the court and LaMarcus Aldridge contributed 19 in the win. The Trail Blazers haven’t been particularly hot outside of Oregon, trudging through the 2014-2015 campaign with a 17-18 road record. Portland will try to make it two in a row on Friday in Phoenix.
- Dwight Howard returned to the Rockets lineup on Wednesday, helping contribute to a 95-93 Houston victory over New Orleans. Howard played a conservative 16 minutes in the road win, as James Harden scored 25 and Trevor Ariza provided 22 to nab the win.
- The Toronto Raptors have been saddled with some Theodore Rex level misery thanks to a disheartening injury report. All-Star guard Kyle Lowry’s back injury, aggravated in a 108-104 loss to the Pistons on Tuesday, has put the Villanova product on the shelf indefinitely. The Raptors say they have no set timetable for the point guard’s return. The Raps lost to the Bulls last night, but still clinched a playoff spot thanks to the weakness of the Eastern Conference.
- In far cheerier Central Division injury news, sick bay regular Derrick Rose says he isn’t experiencing any pain in his surgically repaired knee. This development could have Rose back with the Chicago Bulls before the end of the regular season. How long Rose stays healthy for remains a mystery.
- Erik Musselman has rejoined the head coaching ranks. The former Golden State Warriors and Sacramento Kings bench boss has taken a gig at Nevada. Musselman comes to the job following a season as an assistant coach at LSU.
- Major League Soccer is officially coming to the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Minnesota United FC will be playing in the MLS in 2018. The expansion club will be holding onto the name of its NASL incarnation that’s been around since 2010.
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