:: GREG MADDUX LANDS 350TH CAREER WIN (Pro. Baseball)
:: LAKERS AND JAZZ DEADLOCKED IN WESTERN CONFERENCE SEMI-FINALS (Pro. Basketball)
:: NFL REVIEWS FURTHER EVIDENCE AGAINST NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (Pro. Football)
THAT’S A WHOLE LOT OF W’S…
Future Hall-of-Fame pitcher Greg Maddux won his 350th game on Saturday night when the San Diego Padres beat the Colorado Rockies 3-2. Maddux is just the ninth pitcher to accomplish that feat.
Maddux was stuck at win 349 for his past four games, during which he took three losses and one no-decision. On Saturday night, however, he was locked in, giving up only 1 run through 6 innings. Maddux’s win also snapped a 5-game losing streak for the Padres, who currently hold the worst record in baseball. With 4 more victories, Maddux would put himself in an eighth-place tie with Roger Clemens on the all-time wins list.
The evening was also notable because Maddux’s catcher, Luke Carlin, was making his major league debut. “I don’t know what to say,” Carlin said. “It’s kind of like all my dreams came true at once, I guess. It was a privilege, an honor. I’m pretty much speechless.”
Quote of the Week: “We need to start winning as a team and hopefully tonight is the start of things to come.” — Greg Maddux
Further Reading: “Maddux reaches 350-win milestone” — Tom Krasovic, San Diego Union-Tribune
ALL THAT JAZZ: UTAH TIES UP SERIES
On Sunday afternoon, the Utah Jazz topped the Los Angeles Lakers in overtime, winning a thrilling 123-115 game. The Jazz and the Lakers are now tied at 2 games apiece in the best of 7 series.
The Lakers entered Sunday’s game with a 2-1 lead in the series, but the Jazz came ready to play. However, despite looking dominant in the fourth quarter, they lost a 12-point lead in the final minutes of the game, and the Lakers took it to overtime. In OT, the Jazz recovered their momentum and ended up handily beating Los Angeles. Kobe Bryant, playing through an injury to his back, scored 33 points, but his performance was not enough to stop Deron Williams and the hot Jazz team.
The Jazz have won the last 2 games of the series, but the next game, which will be played in Los Angeles, will be a much bigger test for them. During the first 4 games of this series, both the Lakers and the Jazz have pulled out wins when playing at home.
Quote of the Week: “Another game the Lakers trailed throughout. Another game they almost came back to win. Another game they didn’t.” — Jonathan Adams, L.A. Times
Further Reading: “Jazz pull out OT win over Lakers, send series to L.A. tied 2-2” — Associated Press, via ESPN
PATRIOT GAMES: WALSH HANDS OVER TAPES TO NFL
Last week, former Patriots video assistant Matt Walsh gave the NFL tapes that he filmed while working for the Patriots–the tapes are reportedly evidence that the Patriots cheated by recording the signals of opposing teams. The NFL believes that there is nothing new in the tapes that the Patriots have not already admitted. However, if there are any new illegal videotaping procedures contained on the tapes, it could lead to the NFL severely penalizing the Patriots organization.
Early last season, the Patriots were caught illegally taping the New York Jets’ defensive signals during a game. As a result of that incident, dubbed “Spygate” by the media, the Patriots organization and coach Bill Belichek were fined, and the Patriots forfeited a first-round draft pick. If, after reviewing these new tapes, the league finds evidence of further cheating, the Patriots could receive even harsher sanctions.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will meet with Matt Walsh on Tuesday. After that meeting, he is expected to make a decision about what actions, if any, the league will take.
Quote of the Week: “I think it is very unfortunate that the NFL has already started its ‘nothing new’ spin before watching the tapes or finding out what Mr. Matt Walsh has to say. Let’s see where the evidence leads.” — U.S. Senator Arlen Specter
Further Reading: “Walsh-NFL meeting set” — John Tomase, Boston Herald
WHAT TO WATCH THIS WEEK
:: BASKETBALL – The second round of the playoffs continues this week. Eight teams remain in the playoffs: Utah/Los Angeles, Detroit/Orlando, San Antonio/New Orleans, and Boston/Cleveland. A detailed schedule of the games is available at www.nba.com.
:: FOOTBALL — On Tuesday, after Roger Goodell meets with Matt Walsh, he is expected to hold a press conference to talk about any actions the league might take. If the NFL announces further penalties against the Patriots, it will be major sports news.
:: HOCKEY – The Conference Finals continue this week, and only four teams remain: Pittsburgh/Philadelphia and Detroit/Dallas. A detailed playoff schedule is available at www.nhl.com.
MLB (Pro. Baseball): Baseball season is in full swing, but it is a long season, so teams tend to measure their success month by month. The All-Star break takes place the second week of July. By then, teams’ records will be a good indicator of how well they are performing this season. [Official MLB Website]
NBA (Pro. Basketball): The second round of the playoffs continues this week. Eight teams have been eliminated from this year’s post-season play. [Official NBA Website]
MEN’S GOLF: While there are professional tournaments throughout the year, the most important tournaments are the four Major Championships: The Masters, U.S. Open, The Open (The British Open), and the PGA Championship. Now that the Masters is over, the next event will be the U.S. Open, which is played in the month of June. [Official PGA Website]
NOTABLE PLAYERS: Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els
NHL (Pro. Hockey): The Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins, and Philadelphia Flyers are the final four teams in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. [Official NHL Website]
MEN’S AND WOMEN’S TENNIS: While there are professional tournaments throughout the year, the most important tournaments of the year are the four Grand Slam tournaments: the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon, and US Open. The Australian Open took place in January. The French Open, which is held in May, is the next Grand Slam event. [USTA Website]
NOTABLE PLAYERS: Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Justine Henin
NCAA MEN’S BASKETBALL (College): Now that the tournament is over, college basketball news will focus on which players leave their schools for the NBA, and which college teams land the premier high-school players for next season. [CBS Sports]
NFL (Pro. Football): The pre-season begins in August, and the regular season begins in September. [Official NFL Website]
NCAA FOOTBALL (College): Practice sessions for college football begin in summer, and the regular season begins in August. [NCAA Football, ESPN]