MLB Divisional Playoffs, an intense boxing match, Florida laying down the law in college football, and the Saints and Patriots proving they’re the top teams in the NFL. Those are just some of the things that happened this week in the world of sports!
Weekly Sports Update – October 7th Edition
Astros and Yankees Dominate while Dodgers and Braves Fight Hard
The top 2 American League seeds in the MLB Playoffs have so far dominated their competition. The Houston Astros blitzed the Tampa Bay Rays. First, it was Justin Verlander’s chance to show why he’s likely a first ballot hall of famer. Verlander threw 7 innings, walked 3, struck out 8, and didn’t allow a run in Houston’s 6-2 Game 1 victory.
In Game 2, the Astros beat the Rays 3-1 behind a brilliant performance from Gerrit Cole. The former Pittsburgh Pirates starter, threw 7.2 innings, walked 1, didn’t allow a run, and struck out 15.
On Monday, Houston has a chance to end the 5-game series against Tampa Bay. Zach Greinke takes the mound for the Stros. If Greinke throws as well as Verlander and Cole did, expect Houston’s World Series odds to plummet to +150 from +170.
The New York Yankees have played just as well as the Houston Astros. The Yankees are relying on their excellent bats as well as a fantastic bullpen. New York can close out the Minnesota Twins on Monday. They send their ace, Luis Severino, to the mound. If Severino pitches well, the Yankees should leapfrog the Dodgers as second choice in the futures.
The Dodgers are in a struggle with the Washington Nationals. As are the Atlanta Braves with the St. Louis Cardinals. Of the two top seeds in the NL, the Braves have the best shot of escaping the first round. Los Angeles must beat either Max Scherzer on Monday, or Stephen Strasburg on Wednesday to get to the NL Championship Series.
Triple G Outlasts Derevyanchenko for IBF Middleweight Title
The great Gennady Golovkin won one of the most brutally entertaining boxing matches in the past few years this past Saturday night. Triple G had to call up every single ounce of heart to get by a game Sergiy Derevyanchenko.
GGG hopes to eventually fight the top draw in boxing, Canelo Alvarez, a third time. Alvarez takes on light heavyweight Sergei Kovalev in his next fight. Whether Alvarez wins or not, he hasn’t shown signs that he wants to battle Triple G again.
Why? This could be a situation of egos. In any case, Gennady Golovkin might have discovered his next great rival in Derevyanchenko. A rematch could provide both with huge paydays and fight fans with another great bout.
NYR the Surprise Squad in First Week of NHL Regular Season
Heading into the 2019-2020 NHL Regular Season, most everyone had an opinion about the New York Rangers. Some believed the Rangers were at least a season, if not two, away from contending for the Metropolitan Division. Others believed the Rangers would contend this season.
If the first week of NHL is any indication, the glass full enthusiasts have got it right. The Rangers are 2-0. They’ve got 4 points in the division. That puts them a point behind 2-0-1-0 Washington, and 2 points behind the Carolina Hurricanes.
The key for the Rangers this season is to continue to play well on both sides of the ice. So far, the offense has been spectacular. It averages 5 goals per. That ranks second in NHL. What’s so great if you’re a Rangers fan is seeing how efficient the team has become. NYR only takes 31 shots per match.
The defense ranks eighth in NHL when allowing 2.5 goals per. Yep, NYR has only played 2 matches. But, let’s give credit where credit is due. So far, they’ve been a complete opposite team from what we saw last season. If they keep this up, the turnaround should most definitely lead to a playoff berth. And, who knows? Teams have gone from worst to first in hockey before.
College Football: Florida Beats Auburn to Prove They’re For Real
Both Alabama and Clemson took a powder this Saturday. That doesn’t mean there weren’t any good games. One team, the Florida Gators, decided to throw their hat into the College Football Playoff discussion with a rousing 24-13 victory over the rival Auburn Tigers.
Florida’s victory sent them from 10th to 7th on the AP Rankings. The Gators have a shot to climb their way up further on the rankings when they take on 5th ranked LSU this Saturday. How are the Gators doing it? Defense and excellent quarterback play from backup Kyle Trask.
Ahead of LSU at 5th are Georgia and Ohio State tied at third, Clemson, and Alabama. Georgia looks like the most vulnerable squad in the Top 5. Florida, Auburn, and Texas A&M remain on the schedule. The Dawgs could most definitely lose 2 of those 3 games. Auburn especially looks dangerous to add an “L” to UGA’s record since the Bulldogs battle the Tigers on the road.
NFL: Payton Unleashes Bridgewater, New England Wins Again
The talk this past week was that if the New Orleans Saints wished to continue winning they needed more from Teddy Bridgewater. Coach Sean Payton either read the memo, or he decided it was time to see what Bridgewater has.
Teddy didn’t disappoint. He threw for 314 yards and 4 touchdowns. The Saints face Jacksonville, Chicago, and the Arizona Cardinals before their bye. Based on the schedule, Bridgewater has a chance to go 6-0 before Drew Brees returns. That’s amazing considering he had to take a couple of years off after a devastating injury as a Minnesota Viking.
The New England Patriots took their time to get it going against the Washington Redskins. But, man, when they got it going…they got it going! The Pats dominated Washington 33-7 to solidify their position as the top football team in the NFL.
Patriots fans might want to start thinking 16-0. New England has, again, one of the softest schedules in the league. They travel to the Jets, Ravens, Eagles, Texans, and Bengals. They battle the Giants, Browns, Cowboys, Chiefs, Bills, and Dolphins at home the rest of the way. The Bradys & Belichicks can win every one of their remaining games.
Washington was so distraught after the loss that they fired head coach Jay Gruden the next morning on Monday. Bill Callahan will take over as interim head coach. Since Dan Snyder bought the team, two Super Bowl winning coaches, Joe Gibbs and Mike Shanahan, have struggled in D.C.
Who knows if anyone even wants to coach Washington after this latest disaster.
Have a great week!
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