Today in Sports: 6/12/17 Review

NBA:

Golden State Warriors defeat Cleveland Cavaliers 129-120: The Warriors defeated the Cavaliers to win the 2017 NBA championship. This is the first championship for Finals MVP Kevin Durant. Although this helps his legacy, it’s hard to overlook that he joined the best team in NBA history (a team that he lost to in the playoffs) to win the title.  Durant was fantastic in these finals, scoring 30 or more points in all five games. He finished this game with 39 points on 14-20 shooting from the field. Stephen Curry added 34 points of his own. Draymond Green and Klay Thompson didn’t consistently put up points, but they were fantastic on the defensive end of the floor all series. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love picked a bad day to struggle. Although Irving’s 26 points seems impressive, he struggled down the stretch when his team needed him most. Kevin Love finished the game with only 6 points. That’s not even close to good enough. J.R. Smith backed up his “Cavs in 7” tweet with a fantastic game, scoring 26 points on 9-11 shooting from the field. He shot 7-8 from three-point range. LeBron James was the best player in this series. He became the first player in NBA Finals history to average a triple-double. He’s now 3-5 in his 8 Finals appearances, but it’s hard to blame him. He’s been the underdog in six of the 8 Finals matchups. LeBron finished game five with 41 points, 13 rebounds, and 8 assists. Congrats to the Golden State Warriors!

Today in Sports: 6/12/17 Preview

NBA:

Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State Warriors: The Warriors host the Cavaliers in game five of the NBA Finals. After losing their first game of the playoffs, the Warriors have a chance of winning the championship in front of their home crowd. Now up 3-1 in the series, the Cavaliers hope to have the greatest comeback in NBA Finals history, just one year after having the greatest comeback in NBA Finals history. Imagine if the “Warriors blew a 3-1 lead” turned into “Warriors blew a 3-0 lead.” Although it’s unlikely, nothing is impossible for LeBron James. He’s the best player on the planet. The Warriors will try to force someone else to step up, something that Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love are capable of doing. This will either be the last game of the NBA season, or a horrifying reminder to the Warriors that a series isn’t over until it’s over.

Today in Sports: 6/11/17 Review

Tennis – French Open Men’s Singles Final:

(4) Rafael Nadal defeated (3) Stan Wawrinka 6-2 6-3 6-1: Rafa Nadal dominated the French Open. He ran through the tournament without even losing a set. In only one set did one of his opponents win 4 games. That’s an extremely impressive feat for the 31-year-old Spaniard. This was his fifteenth major championship and tenth French Open title. He’s now second all-time in grand slam championships behind his archrival and good friend Roger Federer. It seems like Nadal and Federer are playing the best tennis of their careers, which is absolutely insane to think about at their age. Wawrinka played a phenomenal tournament until the final. He was completely outclassed by Nadal. Wawrinka was 3-0 in finals before this loss. He’ll be back, but today wasn’t his day. Today belonged to Rafael Nadal.

 

NHL:

Pittsburgh Penguins defeat Nashville Predators 2-0: The Pittsburgh Penguins defeated the Nashville Predators 2-0 to win the Stanley Cup. The Penguins won the series 4-2. This game (and series) was marred by poor officiating. The Predators scored a goal early in the second period, but it was waved off because the referee incorrectly blew his whistle. Once the whistle is blown, the play is dead. The referee thought the Penguins’ goalie had trapped the puck, but it went under his legs and was scored a fraction of a second after the whistle blew. The Penguins would score the first official goal of the game with just over a minute remaining. They would tack on a second goal when Nashville pulled their goalie. Instead of the score being 2-0 Pittsburgh, it should’ve been 1-1 and heading to overtime. The Penguins deserve credit; it wasn’t their fault that the officials screwed up. But it’s unfortunate that a fantastic Stanley Cup Finals series will be remembered because of poor officiating.

Today in Sports: 6/11/17 Preview

Tennis – French Open Men’s Singles Final:

(3) Stan Wawrinka vs. (4) Rafael Nadal: Third ranked Stan Wawrinka will face fourth ranked Rafael Nadal for the French Open championship. Nadal is a clay court specialist, and is one of the greatest tennis players of all time. Nadal is tied with Pete Sampras for the second most grand slam singles titles with 14, just four behind his archrival and good friend Roger Federer. He’s going for his tenth career French Open championship. Wawrinka is going for his fourth major championship, which includes his sole French Open title in 2015. This should be a highly competitive match.

 

NHL:

Pittsburgh Penguins at Nashville Predators:

The Predators host the Penguins in game six of the Stanley Cup Finals. Down 3-2 in the series, the Predators must win this game at home to force a game seven in Pittsburgh. They’ll be the favorites to win because every game has been won by the home team. Predators goalie Pekka Rinne has been fantastic at home. He was dominant in games three and four. He’s been awful in the three games in Pittsburgh. Rinne cannot afford to let his struggles enter his mind in this do-or-die game. This is an extremely pivotal game for both teams.

Today in Sports: 6/10/17 Review

Tennis – French Open Women’s Singles Final:

Jelena Ostapenko defeated (3) Simona Halep 4-6 6-4 6-3: Jelena Ostapenko became a major champion at the young age of 20 years old. She defeated third ranked Simona Halep to secure the French Open championship. After losing the first set and first three games of the second set, Ostapenko caught fire. She started to control the points, and seemingly couldn’t miss. Halep didn’t have an answer. After winning five of the last six games in the second set, she would close by winning five straight games in the third set to capture the title.

Today in Sports: 6/10/17 Preview

Tennis – French Open Women’s Singles Final:

(3) Simona Halep vs. Jelena Ostapenko: The French Open Women’s Singles Final will be between third ranked Simona Halep and unranked Jelena Ostapenko. Both women are going for their first ever Grand Slam championship. Halep has won many tournaments on her way to becoming the third ranked player in the world, but she has yet to win a major. This is her best chance yet. Ostapenko is only twenty years old, and will likely get many other chances if she continues to play at this level. It’s easier said than done, but she’s been impressive throughout the tournament. The key for Ostapenko will be to handle her nerves, because this is the greatest challenge she’s faced in her career. The winner of the match will be immortalized for life.