IN THE WAKE OF THE WEEK: Sharks make Vegas pay; Giants sweep Jays
PAVELSKI’S EPIC GAME 7 EXIT: The Vegas Golden Knights were cruising. Up 3-0 vs. the San Jose Sharks with a half-period to play, everything had gone their way. They only needed to close it out and move on to Round 2. However, Cody Eakin changed it all. He was assessed a major penalty on a hit against Sharks Captain Joe Pavelski. As Joe Thornton, Brent Burns and Evander Kane literally carried him off the ice, it was Thornton who extolled his bench to score three goals and make Vegas pay. They listen when Thornton talks. Logan Couture scored the first in the feverish 5-minute power play and raised his index finger to exclaim, “That’s one!” San Jose rallied to their bloodied, distressed captain. They proceeded to score three more power play goals in 4:01, take the lead, lose it in the final minute, and then win late in the first OT. Logan Couture, Kevin Labanc and Tomas Hertl all daggered the Knights. Then, the unlikeliest of heroes, Barclay Goodrow, ended it in OT. Eakin’s penalty allowed San Jose to move on to Round 2 in a frenetic final 30 minutes in Game 7. Vegas continues to debate the penalty. They woke the sleeping giant. No Vegas Stanley Cup dreams this campaign. It was an unbelievable contest.
CRAZY FIRST ROUND: Tampa, Calgary, Washington and Nashville are all out of the Stanley Cup playoffs! The top seeds were vanquished by seemingly lesser teams. The Tampa Lightning, the No. 1 team in the regular season, was ousted 4-0 by the upstart Columbus Blue jackets. Calgary failed against Colorado. St. Louis bested the Nashville Predators. Carolina took out Washington in OT on Wednesday night. Talk about brackets turned upside-down. It will be a great Round 2.
ADIEU CANADA: Teams from Canada have not won the Stanley Cup in decades. However, they had a good array in this Stanley Cup playoffs. They All go bye-bye in the opening round of the playoffs. Toronto, Calgary. And Winnipeg are gone. The curse continues north of the border.
KERR RIPS WARRIORS: Nothing can be taken for granted this season. So, as the Golden State Warriors struggle to close out the L.A. Clippers, Coach Steve Kerr goes on the offensive. Following their 129-121 loss on Wednesday night, Kerr exclaims, “It’s a season where things have not gone smoothly all the time…I expected us to come out better and win the game.” Despite Kevin Durant’s 45 points, Golden State showed shoddy defense and inconsistent offense. Last night’s game hopefully closed it out.
LUKE’S WORLD: Out of Los Angeles, hired by the Kings, Luke Walton’s world has become more complex. He has the potential to take the Kings to the next level. However, now arises a lawsuit by journalist Kelli Tennant charging a sexual assault in a Santa Monica hotel room in 2017. At the time, he was an assistant coach for Golden State. Now, 3 years later, she finally files suit. Luke claims there will be vindication. His tenure with the Sacramento Kings starts off on rocky ground.
GIANTS TROLL: It is a good news-bad news scenario for the San Francisco Giants. They are in last place in the West, but only 3.5 games out. They had a decent week with a sweep in Toronto. However, they are 29th in the league with a mere .212 batting average. The pitching staff is 2nd in MLB with a 3.20 ERA. If they get their bats in order, they could become relevant in the West.
A’S WELCOME TORONTO: They must have revenge on their minds as they host the Toronto Blue Jays this weekend. They were swept in their visit to Canada. They returned to take care of business vs. the Texas Rangers. they are 2.5 games out, they boast fifth in MLB in runs scored with 133. Chad Pinder, Marcus Simien and Matt Chapman are all hitting .311-plus. Khris Davis, set with a new contract, has hit 10 round-trippers. The A’s are positioned to compete well. They may be beginning to hit a stride.
RING HEIST: U.S. Customs and Border Control confiscate 177 fake championship rings worth $11.7 million. They are all fabricated in China. They included products for the Yankees, Cubs, Patriots and Eagles along with many others. They infringe on the major league trademarks of the applicable leagues. They are worth about $66,000 each. The perpetrators are heavily penalized for their deception.
Jim Adams is a regular contributor to The Union. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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