This Week in Basketball and Hockey

12/11 to 12/17

NBA Games of the Week

Friday, December 15: San Antonio at Houston (9:30 PM EST, ESPN)

NBA Power Rankings (Last Week’s Rankings in Parentheses)

1. Golden State Warriors (1)
2. Houston Rockets (3)
3. Boston Celtics (2)
4. Cleveland Cavaliers (4)
5. San Antonio Spurs (5)
6. Toronto Raptors (6)
7. Milwaukee Bucks (10)
8. Washington Wizards (8)
9. Minnesota Timbwerwolves (9)
10. Detroit Pistons (NR)

NHL Games of the Week

Tuesday, December 12: Tampa Bay at St. Louis (8:00 PM EST, NBCSN)
Thursday, December 14: Pittsburgh at Vegas (10:00 PM EST, NHLN)

Matty D’s Hockey Power Rankings

1. Tampa Bay: The Bolts are marching on but have a huge matchup with St Louis on Tuesday. Note for casual viewers: check this game out, it is going to be good hockey.

2. St Louis Blues: The Blues will be without Jaden Schwartz for up to six weeks as he took a puck off the skate in Saturday’s game vs Detroit. He has been arguably their best two way player with a +23 rating.

3. Los Angeles Kings: The Kings are riding an eight game winning streak and playing like royalty. Their 88.4% penalty kill is good for top spot in the league.
4. Nashville Predators: The Preds play their next four contests vs Canadian teams, good thing is their bout with Winnipeg is at home while the rest are on the road. Poutine anyone?
5. Winnipeg Jets: Patrik Laine had his four game goal streak snapped on Saturday vs Tampa. The young gun is starting to produce like his phenomenal debut.
6. Toronto Maple Leafs: Auston Matthews is out with an upper-body injury but those in “the know” think it is a precautionary measure. It should be noted the star forward missed four games in November with an injury listed the same.
7. Washington Capitals: The Caps are playing great hockey as of late, led by Russian sniper Alex Ovechkin. His twenty one goals are good for the league lead.
8. Columbus Blue Jackets: Good thing the Jackets can kill penalties because they sure as hell can’t score on the power play.
9. Vegas Golden Knights: The Knights have activated goaltender Marc Andre-Fleury from IR. The starter missed twenty five games with a concussion.

10. San Jose Sharks: If I would have told you Aaron Dell would be leading the NHL, more than a quarter way through the season, in both save percentage and goals against average, you would have called me crazy? Well, its happening.

College Basketball Games of the Week

Sunday, December 17: #7 North Carolina at #20 Tennessee (3:00 PM EST, ESPN)


Written by Mark

A gentleman and a scholar.