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Monday, April 24, 2023
The first week of the Stanley Cup Playoffs were as chaotic as could be expected, no team (maybe besides the record-breaking Boston Bruins). No series ended up in a sweep with even the top teams per Conference battling for survival in the marathon for 16 wins. The Dallas Stars are positioned strongly for a run for the cup and needed a deep team effort to split the week 2-2. In their wins, they were led by an unexpected source, Roope Hintz, who was fourth on the team in points in the regular season. Hintz netted a hat trick in a crucial Game 2 win to at least gain the split headed north to Minnesota. He backed it up with a 3-assist effort in Game 4, again in a clutch series situation, to send the stars home tied with 2 of the next 3 in the Metroplex. Hintz's 4 goals are tops in the playoffs (through Sunday). His 8 points trail only Leon Draisaitl's 9 points but Hintz had the clutch. Can the Dallas Stars take the cup? We'll see what the Finnish Roope Hintz can do, but betting on him is a good idea.
Monday, April 17, 2023
It was an exciting week in the NBA as the play-in format took center stage as teams vied for the last two seeds in the playoffs. Win you're alive. Lose you're dead. The Miami Heat were in the middle of the battle, first losing the play in game to guarantee them a 7 seed, but then securing the 8. Nobody was more critical than Jimmy Butler. Butler scuffled in a loss to the visiting Atlanta Hawks to force his Heat into a do or die. And they did. Behind his 31 point effort, the Heat disposed of his former team the Chicago Bulls and thrust themselves into the Eastern Conference playoffs. You cannot win unless you're in the game. And win they did, taking the first game from the top seeded Milwaukee Bucks by 13 points. And it was all about Butler. 15-27 from the field. 35 points. 11 assists. 5 rebounds. The Bucks had no answers. Can Miami become a beast in the East? Jimmy Butler will have everything to do with it! Our Longhorndave Wportsman of the Week!
Monday, April 10, 2023
A rain slogged weekend wound up with the best current player in golf surging to an easy victory that wasn't so easy. After fighting through a rough 1st hole on Thursday, then chasing Brooks Koepka through delays and cold rain, Jon Rahm eased through The Masters last round as the best player in Augusta (okay, second best if you include Phil Mickelson that day). Rahm put himself in position with a seven under 65 the first day then never looked back at least not out of the top 2 or 3. His twelve under was clear of the field by a full hole. It was a solid all-around game, but especially hitting fairways and greens. Very little did he need to make a crucial put, it was just solid all around. It's Rahm's second time as the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!
Monday, April 3, 2023
One game and one shot defined the Final Four in Houston as a thrilling contest came to a conclusion after the buzzer as the ball tickled the bottom of the net. San Diego State had trailed their matchup with Florida Atlantic since about midway in the first half by as many as 13 as it seemed the 3-loss Owls were headed to the National Championship final. Until they weren't. Holding FAU without a score for 3 minutes to pull near even in the last four, the Aztecs set themselves up for success. And Lamont Butler delivered. Deciding not to foul, SDSU got the ball with six second left and that was enough for Butler. Opting not to call a timeout (which can more help the defense set up than the offense), Butler took the ball from the rebounder and dribbled down. Left. Right. In. Back. Jumper. Called Game. Just like we all dream of doing on the playgrounds growing up. And Butler wasn't their leading scorer just the guy who was ready for the big moment. And is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!