1.25.16: Super Bowl Bound

Good Morning! It may have been a chilly weekend, but there were plenty of heated sports match ups to warm your weekend right up! First thing’s first, highlights from the NFL Conference Championship games, including this super leap from Super Cam:

QUIPS FOR THIS WEEK

NFL

Well, championship football weekend came and went and the Super Bowl is now set. So, how did we get here?

In the AFC, the Denver Broncos defeated the New England Patriots 20-18 in Denver as the Pats failed to get a 2-point conversion that would’ve tied the game in the 4th and led to overtime. This means that Peyton Manning will get a shot at a second Super Bowl in Santa Clara in two weeks.

On the other hand, the NFC championship was slightly less close… and by that, we mean that the Carolina Panthers dominated the Arizona Cardinals 49-15. Cam Newton will lead the Panthers to their second attempt at a Super Bowl ring and if nothing else, we’re pretty sure they’ll be ready.

Team SQ, you’ve got two weeks to prepare. Super Bowl 50 is set and Beyonce is ready. February 7th — let’s go!

NBA

Playoff football wasn’t the only dramatic storyline over the weekend as the Cleveland Cavaliers made headlines by firing second year head coach David Blatt on Friday night. It’s slightly unclear why the Cavs chose to part ways, but chemistry seems to be the common theme among interweb rumblings. Assistant coach Tyronn Lue replaced Blatt as head coach of the leading team in the eastern conference – and then that team ended up losing on Saturday night to the Chicago Bulls at home 83-96. Will the Cavs get it together? Time will tell.

In other news, the two best of the west, the Golden State Warriors and the San Antonio Spurs, face off tonight! Sadly, Tim Duncan will be out due to soreness in his knee, but we’re still excited. Game on!

College Basketball

#1 Oklahoma started their first week at the top of the AP poll since 1990, and stayed there after scoring an 86-72 win over #13 Baylor. #3 Kansas beat Texas 76-67, #11 Michigan State put a stop to their 3-game losing streak when they topped #7 Maryland 74-65, and #20 Duke beat NC State 88-78 to end their own 3-game losing streak. On Sunday, Virginia Tech fell to #2 UNC Chapel Hill 70-75.

This week, look for #20 Duke to take on #15 Miami tonight at 7pm on ESPN, and #9 Iowa to take on #7 Maryland on Thursday at 7pm on ESPN. Next Saturday, #13 Virginia will play #17 Louisville at 1pm on CBS and #23 Kentucky will take on #3 Kansas at 7pm on ESPN.

Soccer

On Saturday,  Adam Lallana scored a last-minute goal for his Liverpool squad to beat Norwich City, 5-4Tottenham Hotspur scored a 3-1 win over Crystal Palace. Top of the table team Leicester City won 3-0 over Stoke City,  Southampton beat Manchester United 1-0, and Manchester City drew 2-2 against West Ham United. On Sunday, Arsenal lost 0-1 to Chelsea.

Other

After this weekend’s Australian Open matches, the four highest-seeded women advanced to the upcoming women’s singles quarter finals – #1 seed Serena Williams will now face #5 Maria Sharapova, and #4 Agnieszka Radwanska will play #10 Carla Suarez-Navarro. In men’s singles, after an unexpected 100 unforced errors, #1 seed Novak Djokovic advanced past #14 Gilles Simon and will play #7 Kei Nishikori, while #3 Roger Federer will take on #6 Tomas Berdych.

Gracie Gold won her second U.S. Figure Skating title yesterday.

And, in MLB news, Yoenis Cespedes agreed to a three-year, $75 million deal with the New York Mets on Friday.

JUST FOR FUN

Stephen Curry – the song
We didn’t know Soulja Boy was a basketball fan, but here’s the new beat he just laid down to commemorate the Warriors’ guard 

STORIES FOR INSIGHTS, COOL FACTOR + DEBATE

Kathryn Smith
The NFL’s first full-time female coach
She’s been working with Rex Ryan for seven years, and will now be the Buffalo Bills’ special teams quality control coach

When you get some good advice from an unlikely source…
You take it!
Novak Djokovic was losing at the Australian Open until a fan shouted from the stands, “No more dropshots!”

1.19.16: Championship football

Happy Tuesday! Let’s start a short week off with some highlights from the end of the NFL Divisional match-ups over the weekend.

 

QUIPS FOR THIS WEEK

NFL

First, things first, are the St. Louis Rams moving to LA? Yes, they are.

Now, back to the wild weekend that was the divisional playoffs.

On Saturday, the New England Patriots looked strong in a 27-20 win over the Kansas City Chiefs to advance to the AFC Conference Championship. The second game of the night between the Green Bay Packers and Arizona Cardinals featured a series of game-ending heroics starting with an incredible touch down throw from Aaron Rodgers to send the game into OT and then an amazing run by Larry Fitzgerald that led to a victory for the Cardinals 26-20.

On Sunday, the Carolina Panthers dominated the first half and overcame a comeback by the Seattle Seahawks to win the game 31-24 while the Denver Broncos defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 23-16 to move on to the next round.

What’s next? The Conference Championships, of course! Next Sunday, the Denver Broncos will meet the New England Patriots in Denver at 3:05pm EST on CBS followed by the Arizona Cardinals at the Carolina Panthers at 6:40pm EST on FOX.

College Football

Did you watch the National Championship last week? Alabama beat Clemson 45-40 last Monday night. This was Alabama’s 4th national title since the 2009 season, and head coach Nick Saban’s 5th career title.

NBA

Talk about a statement game. On Sunday night, the Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers in a dominating fashion, 132-98.

In other professional hoops news, Team USA released the 30 finalists for the Rio Olympics roster.

Oh, and Kevin Durant clarified his feelings on sports media. FYI.

College Basketball

Tough week for the higher ranked teams in college hoops. On Sunday night, #1 Oklahoma lost to #19 Iowa State 77-82, #20 Duke had their third straight loss after falling to Syracuse 62-64, and #15 Kentucky lost to Auburn 70-75.

This week, tune in for #7 Maryland v. #11 Michigan State next Saturday on ESPN at 6:30pm EST.

Soccer

League-leader Arsenal drew 0-0 against Stoke City on Sunday with the help of goalkeeper Petr Cech, as Manchester United won 1-0 over Liverpool after Wayne Rooney’s goal in the 78th minute. Other top contender, Leicester City drew 1-1 against Aston Villa on Saturday (just days after Aston Villa scored their first win since opening day of this season), Manchester City won 4-0 against Crystal Palace, Chelsea drew 3-3 against Everton, and Tottenham won 4-1 over Sunderland. It’s important to note that after City’s win on  Saturday, they’re now only one point behind Arsenal and Leicester City at the top of the table.

In other news, congratulations to Argentinian Lionel Messi for receiving his fifth FIFA Ballon d’Or, and American Carli Lloyd for being crowned as the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year.

JUST FOR FUN

Looking for a sports movie?
A list of the best ones on Netflix, and details on how to find them

 

STORIES FOR INSIGHTS, COOL FACTOR + DEBATE

This week’s stories highlight several important sports figures that passed away since the start of 2016. We’re so sorry to see them go, and our hearts go out to their friends and families. Rest in peace.


Andrew Smith
The former Butler center was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2014, and died on Tuesday. During his time at Butler, the team went to the national championships in 2010 and 2011. His former coach – Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens – missed a game against the Chicago Bulls to visit Smith in the hospital.

Monte Irvin
The Hall of Fame outfielder who played for the New York Giants in the 1950s passed away at his Houston home at the age of 96.

1.11.16: On to the Divisionals

Good Morning! Much to discuss from Wild Card weekend. Let’s start with this catch from the Pittsburgh Steelers/Cincinnati Bengals game:

QUIPS FOR THIS WEEK

NFL

So, about those Wild Card games… what a wild weekend indeed! On Saturday in AFC-land, the Kansas City Chiefs pretty much crushed the Houston Texans in the earlier match-up of the day. The second game ended in dramatics as the Pittsburgh Steelers overcame intense rain and a injury to QB Big Ben Roethlisberger (who returned at the end of the 4th), to fight through a Cincinnati Bengals comeback to win the game after a series of personal fouls and a fumble that resulted in a 18-16 win.

On Sunday, it was all about the NFC. In a frigid early afternoon game, the Seattle Seahawks narrowly defeated the Minnesota Vikings after their kicker missed a game-winning field goal. And in the second game of the day, the Green Bay Packers  finished strong to defeat the Washington Redskins 35-18.

SO what does this mean? Well, it’s too early to predict who will be able to play through injuries but we do know what teams will play each other in next weekend’s Divisional round.

In the AFC:

  • Kansas City Chiefs at the New England Patriots — Saturday at 4:35pm EST on CBS
  • Pittsburgh Steelers at the Denver Broncos — Sunday at 4:40pm EST on CBS

In the NFC:

  • Green Bay Packers at the Arizona Cardinals — Saturday at 8:15pm EST on NBC
  • Seattle Seahawks at the Carolina Panthers — Sunday at 1:05pm EST on FOX

In other NFL news:

  • Longtime New York Giants football coach Tom Coughlin retired — his current and former players had nothing but nice things to say about their 2-time Super Bowl winning coach.
  • The Tampa Bay Bucs fired coach Lovie Smith after the end of the season. Time will tell what direction the Bucs go in for a new coach and whether Lovie Smith coaches somewhere else next season.

College Football

Today is the National Championship! Tune in to ESPN at 8:30pm EST to watch Alabama take on Clemson.

NBA

So the Golden State Warriors keep winning — this time against the Sacramento Kingswhere Steph Curry dropped 38 points to bring the Dubs’ streak to 35-2 with a 128-116 win.

Oh yeah, and the very good San Antonio Spurs may be slightly under the radar this season, but you may want to pay attention as they are 22-0 at home after a win over the New York Knicks 100-99.

On a different note, the Brooklyn Nets fired coach Lionel Hollins over the weekend.

This week look out for these games:

  • Golden State Warriors v. Miami Heat – Monday at 10:30pm EST
  • Cleveland Cavaliers v. San Antonio Spurs – Thursday at 8:00pm EST

College Basketball

Let’s talk college hoops. Aren’t you excited??? C’mon, it’s conference play time! Anyways, this week we saw an awesome 3OT thriller that saw #1 Kansas  defeat #2 Oklahoma in Lawrence 109-106, an LSU upset over #9 Kentucky 85-67 with the help of freshman sensation Ben Simmons, and a #3 Maryland victory over Wisconsin 63-60.

Other

Last week, Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Piazza were inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

JUST FOR FUN

Beyonce
In honor of Beyonce joining Coldplay for the Super Bowl halftime show, here are her top ten moments in sports

P.S.: While we’re talking about musical all-stars, make sure to check out The SportsQuip’s musical talent – we put together a college football championship playlist for you. Let us know what you think!

 

STORIES FOR INSIGHTS, COOL FACTOR + DEBATE

500
…and on to the next one, too!
After the Washington Capitals’ Sunday win against the Ottawa Senators, Alex Ovechkin became the 43rd player in NHL history to score 500 goals. He continued on to score his 501st during the third period

In business, you need to bring your own guts ®
Clemson’s coach, Dabo Swinney, has trademarked his own name and slogans
He’s not the only sports figure to do this, but should collegiate sports players be able to make money off of marketing themselves, too?

 

1.4.16: Wild Card Week

Happy Monday! Did y’all see Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls drop 40 points … IN ONE HALF last night? See highlights here:

QUIPS FOR THIS WEEK

NFL

On Sunday Night Football the Green Bay Packers lost to the  Minnesota Vikings 13-20, who proceeded to lock up the NFC North. See below for the Wild Card implications.

The last week of the regular season also saw the Washington Redskins beat the Dallas Cowboys  34-23, the Miami Dolphins defeat the New England Patriots  20-10, the Pittsburgh Steelers take down the Cleveland Browns 28-12 and the Buffalo Bills top the New York Jets 22-17 in the snow.

So, regular season football is over, which means it’s playoff time! We start off with the Wild Card games that kick off next weekend  featuring:

  • AFC: Saturday games
    • #5 Kansas City Chiefs at #4 Houston Texans at 4:35pm EST on ESPN/ABC
    • #6 Pittsburgh Steelers at #3 Cincinnati Bengals at 8:15pm EST on CBS
  • NFC: Sunday games
    • #6 Seattle Seahawks at #3 Minnesota Vikings at 1:05pm EST on NBC
    • #5 Green Bay Packers at #4 Washington Redskins at 4:40pm EST on FOX

AFC top seeds are #1 Denver Broncos followed by #2 New England Patriots while the NFC has #1 Carolina Panthers followed by #2 Arizona Cardinals.

College Football

It’s all about the bowl games these days in college football and thus far they have not disappointed. Of note, Clemson beat Oklahoma  37-17 in the College Football Playoff Semifinal to reach the National Championship game against Alabama, who dominated Michigan State 38-0 in the other semifinal match-up on New Year’s Eve.

In the New Year’s Six, we saw Stanford crush Iowa 45-16 in the Rose Bowl, Ohio State top Notre Dame 44-28 in the Fiesta Bowl, Houston beat Florida State 38-24, and Ole Miss get the win against Oklahoma State 48-20 in the Sugar Bowl. Oh and on January 2nd, TCU put on a shocking comeback to defeat Oregon  in 3OT, 47-41.

So what’s left? The National Championship game! Mark your calendars for Monday, January 11th when Alabama will face Clemson at 8:30pm on ESPN for the right to call themselves the national champs.

NBA

2016 is all about the NBA. We are about a month out from All-Star and the halfway point of the season, which means games start to matter more and playoff preparation heats up.

Of note from this past weekend: The Golden State Warriors defeated the Denver Nuggets 111-108 in OT to raise their record to 31-2. There were two injury scares in the game but both Kenneth Faried  and Stephen Curry appear to be okay.

This week, tune in for the Cleveland Cavaliers v. the Toronto Raptors and the Milwaukee Bucks v. the San Antonio Spurs — both on Monday.

College Basketball

Conference play has begun in college hoops. This means more games and more excitement.

This week, make sure to watch #2 Kansas vs. #3 Oklahoma today at 9pm EST on ESPN.

Soccer

Last week was a big week in Premier League soccer. Going into the new year, it’s always an advantage to be assured of your position in the table, and several teams were able to start 2016 strong. Arsenal maintained their top position after defeating Newcastle United 1-0 on Saturday. Earlier in the week, they rebounded from their Boxing Day loss to defeat AFC Bournemouth 2-0. Bournemouth drew their second match of the week to second place team, Leicester City. Also on Saturday, Manchester City overcame a 1-0 deficit to top Watford with a final score of 2-1, and Manchester United topped Swansea City 2-1. On Sunday, Tottenham Hotspur drew 1-1 against Everton, and Chelsea started 2016 with a strong 3-0 victory over Crystal Palace.

NHL

This weekend’s Winter Classic ended with the visiting Montreal Canadiens scoring a 5-1 victory over the Boston Bruins. Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots (yes, the football team!) was transformed into an outdoor hockey rink for the occasion. Check it out here.

JUST FOR FUN

Frustration
When your day isn’t quite going the way you’d like it to, remember… at least your equipment doesn’t fight back

STORIES FOR INSIGHTS, COOL FACTOR + DEBATE

Don’t play ball in the house
But, you can play here
Street Soccer USA focuses on social impact by providing a community for the homeless through sports programming