Buzzer Beaters

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NBASteph Curry’s injury has certainly opened up the NBA playoff picture. It seemed like a foregone conclusion the Warriors were going to, at the very least, reach the finals if not win the entire thing when the playoffs started. But without their best player they seem fairly vulnerable.

Now the Blazers appear to be on the verge of advancing to face them and Portland would be lucky to get that series to start as soon as possible. As is usually the case with basketball teams, even the great ones are significantly disadvantaged when they lose their best player, even if it just for two weeks.

The NBA championship seems to be any teams for the taking. It will be interesting to see if one can rise to the occasion before Curry can come back and save the league’s best squad.

Jumping back in time a bit, to the final week of the NBA regular season, we bid farewell to Kobe Bryant who went out in style, scoring 60 points in front of his home crowd to conclude his remarkable career. I remember when Kobe came up and all of the talk comparing him to Michael Jordan.

I don’t know that Kobe was ever as good a Jordan. But I don’t think anyone ever has been. However, I do think that for a time Kobe was the best player on the planet. And who could ask for anything more than that? The game certainly won’t be the same without him.

Switching gears to the NFL, they held their annual draft last week. Los Angeles wayward franchise mortgaged their future to get the first pick this year so they could land what they hope will be a franchise quarterback. I get that.

Case Keenum is no one’s idea of a world class signal caller. But I don’t know if things will necessarily work out for them. Their choices come down to California’s Jared Goff and North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz, neither of whom seems like a can’t miss prospect.

Signals point to them taking Goff, which I feel is the right move. He is coming out of a major conference while Wentz spent his entire career in the Division I NFLchampionship subdivision playing against much lesser competition.

I believe the fact that the Rams gave up so much to draft one of these guys further illustrates just how important the quarterback position is to an NFL team and how difficult it is to find a good one.

Finally, let’s talk some hockey. We don’t talk hockey too much here, but the NHL is in the midst of its playoffs as well and the defending champion has already been knocked out. However, unlike Golden State, I don’t think the Chicago Blackhawks were actually the best team in hockey this year.

That was actually Washington and the Capitals are still very much alive. Much like their arena-mates in the NBA, it seems anyone can claim Lord Stanley’s Cup this year which should make for engaging viewing in the weeks to come.