Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. Dustin Brown (pictured above) is a major favorite to bring home the Conn Smythe Trophy.
By Nick Craddock
The 2012 NHL playoffs are coming to a crescendo. Between a closely contested Eastern Conference Finals featuring the rival New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils and what has turned into a one-sided Western Conference Finals featuring the Los Angeles Kings and Phoenix Coyotes, the muddled playoff picture which began with 16 teams vying for Lord Stanley’s Cup is coming into focus.
Of all the players who have made their mark this postseason in helping their teams to this stage, these five look poised to have the best shot at capturing the Conn Smythe Trophy, awarded to the NHL playoffs’ Most Valuable Player.
1. Dustin Brown, right wing, Kings: Brown is proving why he wears the “C” on his jersey this spring. He leads his team in scoring with seven goals and eight assists, including three game-winning goals. He’s tied with teammate Anze Kopitar for the best plus/minus rating of any player in the playoffs. He delivers crushing hits. And even when he’s not making an incredible play, he influences the game to such a degree that it affects his opponent’s psyche (i.e.Phoenix’s Martin Hanzal cross-checking Brown from behind into the boards during Game 2, resulting in a one-game suspension). All in all, Brown’s outstanding play makes it unfathomable to think the Kings contemplated trading Brown at the trading deadline. Simply put, the Kings’ stellar play through these playoffs thus far would not be possible without Brown. That description sounds like the embodiment of a Conn Smythe winner. Continue reading
Posted in NHL
Tagged Anze Kopitar, Brad Richards, Conn Smythe Trophy, Dustin Brown, Henrik Lundqvist, John Tortorella, Jonathan Bernier, Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles Kings, Martin Brodeur, Martin Hanzal, Mike Smith, New Jersey Devils, New York Rangers, NHL, Nick Craddock, Phoenix Coyotes, Stanley Cup
Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. If the New York Rangers want to bring the Stanley Cup back to New York City for the first time since 1994, much will be expected of their star goaltender, aka Mr. GQ, Henrik Lundqvist.
By Josh Kramer
Men’s College Basketball has gone from 345 to 2. Novak Djokovic once again flexed his muscles in Miami. And Major League Baseball is ready to roll. Last week was fun, but this week will not be too shabby in its own right. Here are the events to keep an eye on.
5. We have entered the final week of the NHL season. I for one am extremely excited for playoff hockey. Two teams are duking it out in the Eastern Conference for the 8th and final playoff spot, while the Wild West still has five teams in contention for the 7th and 8th positions. I am more concerned with the real contenders though. Teams that I think have a legitimate chance of hoisting Lord Stanley in June. I am focused on a showdown in the City of Brotherly Love tomorrow evening.
New York Rangers at Philadelphia Flyers: There is a reason why HBO had a hit series this winter entitled, “24/7 Flyers-Rangers.” Not only are these two of the best teams in all of hockey, but they are also two of the fiercest rivals. These teams have been bitter divisional foes since 1974-1975 season, and have met ten times in the playoffs. Well don’t be surprised to see an 11th edition of the “Battle of the Broads” in this year’s postseason. The Flyers have been led by a high-octane offensive attack that centers around their star, Claude Giroux. The Rangers on the other hand can score in flurries, but their leader is none other than their Mr. “GQ” himself, Henrik Lundqvist. Continue reading
Posted in Miscellaneous
Tagged Augusta National, Bill Self, Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls, Claude Giroux, Derrick Rose, Henrik Lundqvist, John Calipari, Kansas Jayhawks, Kentucky Wildcats, Kevin Durant, March Madness, Masters, Miami Heat, Miami Marlins, MLB, NBA, New York Rangers, NHL, Novak Djokovic, Oakland Athletics, Oklahoma City Thunder, Philadelphia Flyers, San Antonio Spurs, Seattle Mariners, St. Louis Cardinals, Stanley Cup, Tigers Woods, World Series
Photo courtesy of zimbio.com. The New York Rangers currently possess the best record in the Eastern Conference. Much of the team's success is due in large part to goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (pictured above).
By Josh Kramer
The Garden was simply “Linsane” yesterday as Jeremy Lin led the Knicks to a huge home victory over the defending champion Dallas Mavericks. Michigan finally exacted some revenge on their bitter rival, Ohio State, handling Sullinger and Co. in Ann Arbor for the first time in a long time (previously had lost 7 straight to the Buckeyes). And pitchers and catchers began reporting to warm and beautiful cities across the country. This past week was absolutely wild, but the current week should be some fun too. Here are the events to keep an eye on.
5. Is it 1994 all over again? For the first time in a long time, both the Rangers and Knicks are contenders at the same time (granted the Knicks are only 500, but winners of 8 of 9). The Rangers currently possess the best record in the East, while the Red Wings have been simply unbeatable as of late, winning six straight games, and 23 straight at home. This week my attention is focused on a marquee matchup in Pittsburgh tomorrow night. Continue reading
Posted in Miscellaneous
Tagged All Star Game, Anthony Davis, Baylor Bears, Big 12, Blake Griffin, Boston Red Sox, Carl Edwards, Charles Barkley, Creighton Bluejays, Dallas Mavericks, Daytona 500, Derek Jeter, Detroit Red Wings, Doug Gottlieb, Doug McDermott, Duke Blue Devils, ESPN, Florida State Seminoles, Hanley Ramirez, Henrik Lundqvist, Jared Sullinger, Jeremy Lin, Justin Bieber, Kansas Jayhawks, Kentucky Wildcats, Kevin Love, Kyle Korver, Los Angeles Angels, Marquette Golden Eagles, Miami Marlins, Michigan Wolverines, Mike Brey, Missouri Tigers, MLB, NASCAR, New York Knicks, New York Rangers, NHL, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Ohio State Buckeyes, Pittsburgh Penguins, Ryan Braun, Scott Machado, Shaquille O'Neal, Sidney Crosby, Spike Lee, Spring Training, Texas Longhorns, West Virginia Moutaineers