This Week in Basketball and Hockey

11/20 to 11/26

Pretty slow slate of games this week in both the NBA and NHL but Thanksgiving week is typically football time.  Pretty good college basketball action with several tournaments airing this week, including the loaded, double-tournament Phil Knight Invitational.

NBA Games of the Week

Wednesday, November 22: Golden State at Oklahoma City (8:00 PM EST, ESPN)

NBA Power Rankings

1. Golden State Warriors
2. Boston Celtics
3. Houston Rockets
4. San Antonio Spurs
5. Washington Wizards
6. Detroit Pistons
7. Minnesota Timberwolves
8. Cleveland Cavaliers
9. Toronto Raptors
10. Denver Nuggets


NHL Games of the Week

Wednesday, November 22: Chicago at Tampa Bay (7:30 PM EST, NBCSN)

Matty D’s NHL Power Rankings

1. Tampa Bay Lightning: 28% on the Power Play, Stamos 35 points. Nothing else to say.
2. St Louis Blues: It is amazing STL keeps winning with its spotty special teams play. Brayden Schenn looks like the top line center this team has been missing for years.
3. Toronto Maple Leafs: The kids are back, winners of six straight albeit, three via shoot out or overtime.
4. Winnipeg Jets: This is starting to look like the team that will challenge the Blues in the Central. They are flying under the radar… get it?
5. Los Angeles Kings: The Kings are in a bit of a funk and need to start finding ways to score. They play stellar D in all facets of the game, but in today’s NHL – it is a scoring mans league.
6. Nashville Predators: The Preds are hanging around and getting solid goaltending from Pekka Rinne while also putting up some impressive goal scoring as of late.
7. Columbus Blue Jackets: If this team ever figures out a way to score some power play goals, they will be scary… very scary.
8. Las Vegas Golden Knights: It is amazing how this team keeps chugging along. They are on their fourth string goaltender and don’t seem to mind. If they get healthy in that spot, this team could be a playoff contender.
9. New Jersey Devils: This is a streaky team capable of playing exciting, fun hockey and also a team capable of playing not so exciting, fun hockey.
10. Chicago Blackhawks: The Hawks slip into the ten spot this week due to lack of competition. Corey Crawford is playing like a stud, and I predict these guys will catch fire soon. Too much talent on the roster not to.


College Basketball Games of the Week

Tuesday, November 21: Hall of Fame Classic Championship Game (10:00 PM EST, ESPN2)
Teams: Creighton, UCLA, Baylor, Wisconsin

Wednesday, November 22Maui Invitational Championship Game (10:30 PM EST, ESPN2)
Teams:  Marquette, VCU, Wichita State, California, Notre Dame, Chaminade, Michigan, LSU

Friday, November 24:  Battle 4 Atlantis Championship Game (12:00 PM EST, ESPN)
Teams:  Villanova, Western Kentucky, Purdue, Tennessee, SMU, Northern Iowa, NC State, Arizona
Notes:  Look for a potential second-round matchup between #5 Villanova and #18 Purdue.

Sunday, November 26:  Phil Knight Invitational Championship Game #1 (8:30 PM EST, ESPN)
Teams:  Portland, North Carolina, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Connecticut, Oregon, Michigan State, DePaul

Sunday, November 26:  Phil Knight Invitational Championship Game #2 (10:30 PM EST, ESPN)
Teams:  Portland State, Duke, Butler, Texas, Florida, Stanford, Ohio State, Gonzaga
Notes:  Look for a potential second-round matchup between #7 Florida and #17 Gonzaga

Sunday, November 26:  #16 Texas A&M at #10 USC (10:00 PM EST, PAC12)

Written by Mark

A gentleman and a scholar.