What To Watch: Fri. 3/4 – Sun. 3/6

All times are Pacific.

Friday March 4th

NY Rangers at Washington Capitals – 4pm NHLN: One of the best scoring teams in the league (Caps) go against one of the best defensive teams in the league (Rangers).

LillardPortland Trail Blazers at Toronto Raptors – 4:30pm NBA League Pass: Portland is coming on strong led by Damian Lillard but Toronto on a Friday night is very tough place to play.

 

Saturday March 5th

Tottenham vs Arsenal – 4:45am NBCSN: Great rivalry and it means a lot to who plays European soccer next year.

Bayern Munich vs Borussia Dortmund – 9am FX: Last minute addition by FOX. Now people can watch probably the best matchup of the Bundesliga this season. Oh, Bayern has stumbled as of late too.

Nashville Predators at Colorado Avalanche – 12pm NHL.TV: These two are in a battle for the two wild card slots in the Western Conference.

Anaheim Ducks at LA Kings – 1pm NHL.TV: These two are neck and neck in the Pacific division…oh and they hate each other.

Iowa State at Kansas – 1pm ESPN: Kansas already has the Big 12 sown up but this one is all about seeding in the NCAA Tournament.

UNC at Duke – 3pm ESPN: Heck the last one they played came down to the last shot. This one should too.

Washington Capitals at Boston Bruins – 4pm NHLN: These two could meet in the first round of the playoffs as it stands right now.

Louisville at Virginia – 5:30pm ESPN: The Cards aren’t going to the NCAA Tournament due to a self imposed suspension so they are looking to trip up UVA on their way to a high seed.

UFC 196 – 7pm PPV: Conor McGregor vs Nate Diaz and Holly Holm vs Miesha Tate. Good fights made even better by the fact none of these people really like each other.

 

Atlanta Hawks at LA Clippers – 7:30pm NBA League Pass: Forget for a second that both these teams are very, very good and think about Steve Ballmer dunking.

 

Sunday March 6th

Kobalt 400 – 12:30pm FOX: NASCAR heads to Las Vegas which is always a fun race to watch.

Timbers MLS CupPortland Timbers vs Columbus Crew -1:30pm ESPN: First game of the year and it is a rematch of 2015 MLS Cup. You can only imagine how much the Crew want to return the favor to the Timbers. Expect them to come out hard and fast and try to snag an early goal.

Maryland at Indiana – 1:30pm CBS: Indiana has a share of the Big Ten title and look to wrap up the whole enchilada.

NY Islanders at NY Rangers – 2pm NHL.TV: These two are within striking distance of each other and a win here could have dramatic consequences come playoff time.

Sporting KC vs Seattle Sounders – 4pm FS1:  Two of the better teams in MLS over the last few years and both have gone through some serious player overhauls. We’ll see what happens.

LA Galaxy vs DC United – 7pm UNIMAS: The Galaxy have some big superstars like Keene, Gerrard and Cole. But DC United is has some outstanding talent as well.

St Louis Blues at Minnesota Wild – 5pm NBCSN: The Wild are fighting tooth and nail for a playoff spot and the Blues have struggled a little lately. They need to turn it around to keep their spot.

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The Sunday: Leaps, Bounds, Explosions & Crashes

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard

Whatever It Takes

Well the fact of the matter is that it was stupid move but no one ever became a legend by playing it safe. On Friday night a SF Giants fan (we presume) leaped over the railing and into McCovey Cove for a Joe Panik home run ball. While not the smartest move, it was still awesome.

 

Rumblin’

Ottawa defensive lineman Zack Evans intercepted a pass and went 65 yards for a touchdown (or as they say in the CFL, a ‘major score’). Best part, he held the ball high and tight with three points of pressure. Dr. Lou would be proud.

 

No More Fireworks For NFL Players

During the next round of contract negotiations you can bet that there will be a ‘no handling fireworks’ provision. This is because two NFL players lost finger(s) this past 4th of July setting off fireworks. Tampa Bay cornerback CJ Wilson lost two fingers while NY Giants star Jason Pierre-Paul had one amputated. Pierre-Paul may suffer a little more because after the incident, the Giants pulled a contract offer worth $60 million.

 

Crash

Last week saw two spectacular crashes. The first happened late Sunday night at the finish of the Coke Zero 400. Fans were hurt but amazingly driver Austin Dillion walked away from the crash.

The next day in Stage 3 of the Tour de France, a massive pile up occurred which ended the race for six riders including contender Fabian Cancellara

What To Watch Fri. 7/3 – Sun. 7/5


All times are Pacific.

Friday July 3rd

SF Giants at Washington Nationals – 3pm ESPN: A rematch of last years NLCS. The Nationals Bryce Harper is having an MVP season and this is a chance to see him in action.

USMNT v Guatamala (Friendly) -4pm FS1: The final tuneup for both teams as they head into the Gold Cup.

Calgary Stampeders at Montreal Alouettes – 4:30pm ESPN2: Question in this game is the quarterback play. The Stamps Bo Levi Mitchell threw three INT’s last week in the Stamps come from behind win and the Al’s played three QB’s in week one.

Seattle Sounders vs DC United – 8pm UNIMAS: The Sounders look to get back on track against the top team in the Eastern Conference.

 

Saturday July 4th

Tour De France – 4am NBCSN: Cycling’s premier event gets underway in Utrecht, Netherlands of all places. GoPro Video.

Biking

Tampa Bay Rays at NY Yankees – 10am FS1: Toughest division in baseball. Good series to see who is really going to be there in September.

Toronto Blue Jays at Detroit Tigers – 10am MLB.TV: Two teams fighting for relevancy in their respective divisions. It’s also a battle of pitchers from middle Tennessee as R.A. Dickey (Nashville) takes on David Price (Murfreesboro).

Copa America Final – 1pm BeIN: Yes it’s the 4th of July but it’s Argentina vs Chilie.

NY Mets at LA Dodgers – 4:15pm Fox: The Mets send over hyped Matt Harvey to the mound against Zack Greinke. Not bad for a Saturday.

LA Galaxy vs Toronto FC – 4:30pm MLS LIVE: While some stars will be missing such as Michael Bradley, LA’s newest signing, Steven Gerrard,  will make an appearance.

 

Sunday July 5th

Tour De France – 4am NBCSN: Stage two gets underway.

Toronto Argonauts at Saskatchewan Roughriders – 12:30pm ESPN3: The Riders lost starting QB Darian Durant for the year after only a half of football last week. The Argos on their backup too. It’s should be a good one in Riderville.

FIFA Women’s World Cup Final – 2pm FOX: USA meets Japan in a rematch of the 2011 World Cup Final.

NASCAR Coke Zero 400 – 4:45pm NBC: NBC has Nascar now….probably why we have to wait until almost 8pm EST to watch a race on a Sunday night at the end of a Holiday weekend. #Fail.

SF Giants at Washington Nationals – 5pm ESPN: Not a bad way to cap off a long Holiday weekend.

What To Watch Fri. 6/12 – Sun. 6/14

All times are Pacific.

Friday June 12th

USWNT vs Sweden – 5pm FOX: Coming off a 3-1 win over Australia in their first match, the US Women’s National teams looks to get a step close to the knock out stage of the Women’s World Cup.

Kansas City Royals at St Louis Cardinals – 5:15pm MLB.TV: In state rivals and division leaders square off for a weekend series in one of the best baseball cities in North America.

 

Saturday June 13th

College World Series: Arkansas vs Virginia – Noon ESPN: First game of the 2015 College World Series.

Minnesota Twins at Texas Rangers – 1pm MLB.TV: Both teams have shown a lot of promise this season and it’s a decent pitching matchup too.

Stanley Cup Final: Chicago Blackhawks at Tampa Bay Lightning – 5:20pm NBC: Series is tied so it’s the best two out of three.

UFC 188 – 7pm PPV: Heavyweight unification bout between Cain Velasquez and Fabricio Werdum. Velasquez hasn’t been inside the octagon since October 2013. That’s a long layoff only to face a seasoned vet like Werdum.

 

Sunday June 14th

Nascar Quicken Loans 400 – 10am FS1:  Sunday’s are for racing. FACT.

Orlando City FC vs DC United – 4pm FS1: East leading DC United flies into a hornets nest in Orlando.

NBA Finals: Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State Warriors – 5pm ABC: Game five goes down in Oakland.

What To Watch Fri. 4/17 – Sun. 4/19

All times are Pacific

Friday April 17th

Oakland A’s at KC Royals – 5:10pm MLB.TV: Last time these two teams met it was in the AL Wild Card game.

Chicago Blackhawks at Nashville Predators- 6:30pm NBCSN: This is going to be ‘that’ playoff series.

 

Sunday April 18th

Chelsea vs Manchester United – 9:30am NBC: Chelsea may be the odds on favorite to with the Premier League but Man U will have a say in how close it will be.

Minnesota Wild at St Louis Blues – Noon NBC: The Wild took game one of the series in St Louis. That may have only pissed off the Blues.

Real Salt Lake vs Vancouver Whitecaps – 6:30pm MLS LIVE: Two of the top teams in the West at one of the toughest venues to play at in all of MLS.

 

Sunday April 19th

Food City 500 – 10am FOX: A little short track racing from Bristol, TN.

Portland Trailblazers at Memphis Grizzlies – 5pm TNT: This is going to be the series to watch in the first round of the NBA Playoffs.

Better Than The Actual Wreck?

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard

Danica Patrick is one of the few drivers in NASCAR (and auto racing in general) who transcends the sport. Whether you are a sports enthusiast or not you know her name. So when she wrecks on the track it’s a big deal. It’s an even bigger deal when she confronts another driver off the track.

The wreck, like any wreck on a racetrack, is something to see. In this case it runs second fiddle to what happened afterwords when Patrick confronted Denny Hamlin. While not something NASCAR probably wants to see, it’s probably the best unpaid promotion they could have received before the biggest race of the year.

The Daytona 500 is the biggest event of the year for NASCAR. While talk of NASCAR’s demise has leveled off in the past few years, it’s still not in the massive growth phase that it was in the mid 2000’s. In a strange way, an incident like the one we saw Thursday can only help the sport. Probably more so than whoever wins the race.

Patrick will have her supporters and her critics. You cannot deny that she brings interest to NASCAR and the sport of auto racing in general. If she has a confrontation at the track with another drive it is always going to be newsworthy. You have to imagine that the NASCAR brass is secretly giving each other high-fives.

All Injuries Are Not Created Equal

By Brad Hubbard @bradhubbard

If you weren’t watching the Louisville v Duke college basketball game on Sunday then you missed one of the most gruesome public sports injuries you may ever see. If you want to see it for the first time or the 15th it can be found on some major Internet sites. The bigger question is why are so many people outrages by CBS’s replays?

Louisville’s Kevin Ware broke his leg right after contesting a jump shot in the first half of an Elite 8 match up against Duke. He landed right in front of his teams bench. It was immediately apparent that his injury was serious. Several of his teammates looked immediatly away while others were doubled over on the court in shock. Players and Head Coach Rick Pitino had tears in their eyes as the medical staff attended to Ware. Turns out that his leg is broken in two places and the bone was sticking out.

The reaction on Twitter was first asking for prayers then by half time of the game the conversation turned to ‘Why are people showing this replay?’ CBS did not show a replay of the injury during their half time show citing the gruesome nature of the injury. They did show several replays after it had happened. Last fall several media outlets replayed South Carolina’s Marcus Lattimore’s injury in which he dislocated his knee tearing just about every ligament imaginable. ESPN (who broadcasted the game in which Lattimore was injured) replayed the injury more than CBS did. Are all injuries not created equal?

Gruesome injuries are just that, gruesome. People turn away in shock and horror and rightfully so. It doesn’t help anyone to see something like that multiple times. Once is enough. The uproar over seeing Ware’s injury a few times vs no uproar over seeing Lattimore’s several times does lead us to look at the circumstances.

The Louisville v Duke game is on National TV during March Madness. The winner goes onto the Final Four. It’s a big deal. Lattimore’s injury happened in a conference game during the regular season. The game was also Nationally televised however it was not the main game of the day, kicked off  and was on ESPN. Did the high profile stage on which Ware was injured lead to more people seeing it? Of course.

Ware plays basketball and Lattimore football. Do we expect more gruesome injuries in football than in basketball? Are we more mentally prepared for the possibility of a gruesome injury during a football game because of the physical contact and not in basketball because they don’t wear pads and helmets?

Either way you look at it a gruesome injury makes the game secondary and rightfully so. Let’s also not forget that in the NHL superstar Sidney Crosby had emergency surgery Saturday night after being hit in the face with a puck. He has a broken jaw. Last weekend Denny Hamlin of the #11 car in NASCAR suffered a compression fracture in his back after a wreck. injuries are going to happen in sports and sometimes they are very, very hard to watch. Let’s hope we see less of them the rest of the year.