As Ferris Bueller might say: The world of sports moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around at least once a week, you could miss it.Here we'll review what you might have missed in the past week all in one place. Why spend hours scrolling through Twitter to catch up on the news you want? We've already done that for you, so remember to check back every Monday to get your dose of weekly sports review.
The Astros are about to become the second team in baseball history to force a Game 7 after being down 0-3. Just a r… https://t.co/fFTYgzT8f6— Jared Carrabis (@Jared Carrabis)1602895849.0
Game 7 of the ALCS saw the Rays jump out to an early lead as Randy Arozarena homered in the first inning and Mike Zunino in the second. Charlie Morton was brilliant over five and two thirds innings pitched, and Pete Fairbanks slammed the door shut on the series and the Astros' season to close out the game. Tampa was able to overcome the Astros momentum to advance to the World Series, but unfortunately for the Braves their outcome was different.
Happy bois https://t.co/anJxD6ufVe— Tampa Bay Rays (@Tampa Bay Rays)1603060778.0
The Dodgers dropped the first two games of the NLCS and then exploded for 15 runs in Game 3 with multi hit efforts from Joc Pederson, Cody Bellinger, Max Muncy, and Corey Seager who all homered. Atlanta responded in Game 4 however and lit up Clayton Kershaw and Brusdar Graterol breaking the game open in the bottom of the sixth inning to take a 3-1 advantage.
With their grave all but dug with one foot in, the Dodgers got six runs batted in between Corey Seager and Will Smith who each homered in Game 5. Seager homered again in Game 6 in the first inning and Justin Turner went back to back adding another solo shot to begin the game. Max Fried gave up another to make it three first inning runs for LA which was more than enough to carry them to victory behind a stellar performance from Walker Buehler who struck out six batters over six innings while giving up no runs.
The Braves led in four of the first five innings of Game 7 before the Dodgers added a run in the sixth and then the seventh inning to make the game 4-3. The combination of Blake Treinen, Brusdar Graterol, and Julio Urias allowed no hits and one walk from the fourth inning on and didn't allow Atlanta to have a chance to get back into the game.
For the 3rd time in 4 years, the @Dodgers are NL Champs! #CLINCHED https://t.co/0g1GoS9AIa— MLB (@MLB)1603079582.0
Game 1 of the World Series between the Dodgers and Rays is Tuesday night with first pitch at 8:09 p.m. EST.
On Saturday night Teofimo Lopez Jr. (16-0, 12 KOs) upset Vasiliy Lomachenko (14-2, 10 KOs) in a unanimous decision after 12 rounds which unified all four belts at 135 pounds. Lopez was already the IBF lightweight champ heading in, and after defeating Lomachenko, Lopez added the WBA, WBO, and WBC titles to his collection.
At just 23 years old, Lopez has been hailed by some as the future of the division, but with Lomachenko standing in the way it appeared that Teofimo's time was a ways off still. Revered as possibly the best pound for pound fighter alive, Lomachenko was expected to come out of this fight as the unified title holder.
ALL. THE. BELTS. At 23 years old, #TheTakeover is now... 👑 The only 4-belt champ in Lightweight history 👑 The y… https://t.co/xUSaXZc4jd— Top Rank Boxing (@Top Rank Boxing)1602997715.0
Instead what we saw was Loma being out-boxed and outclassed for most of the fight. Footwork and hand speed are two pillars of Lomachenko's success, and we saw little of either in his fight with Lopez. Teofimo came out and attacked early which caused Lomachenko into a largely defensive position until later in the fight.
Lopez hit hard and with accuracy and won eight of the 12 rounds on the judge's scorecard. There will undoubtedly be a rematch and expect to see Lomachenko ready to reassume his spot at the top of the division. Following a 14 month layoff, Loma looked a little rusty and he may have been underestimating his opponent. Of course we could be wrong and we may have just witnessed the passing of the torch in the lightweight division to Lopez.
Week 6 of NFL action didn't have a Thursday Night Game on the schedule as the Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills game was moved to Monday instead. So like cavemen, we had to wait until Sunday(!) to get some NFL. What we got was a mixed bag of games. It seemed that every game on the slate on Sunday was either a one score game late into the fourth quarter, or a blowout not worth your time.
Here are quick bite takes on each game from Sunday.
Chicago Bears 23 - Carolina Panthers 16 - The Bears defense is really good. They got four sacks, two interceptions, and a fumble recovery in a close game. The Bears are a shaky 5-1 now and need to start figuring out how to get more out of running back David Montgomery. The Panthers on the other hand need to bounce back next week while they're waiting for Christian McCaffrey to return from injury.
Indianapolis Colts 31 - Cincinnati Bengals 27 - Joe Burrow continues to look good against strong competition to start off his career. Unable to get a passing touchdown, Burrow still picked up a rushing touchdown and had his team in position to win late. Philip Rivers pulled out the win and threw for 371 yards and three touchdowns to edge out the young gunslinger.
We found a way. #ForTheShoe https://t.co/aBUGv0qEyb— Indianapolis Colts (@Indianapolis Colts)1603054039.0
Detroit Lions 34 - Jacksonville Jaguars 16 - D'Andre Swift finally had a breakout game for the Lions going for 116 rushing yards and two touchdowns as Detroit routed the Jags. Kerryon Johnson fantasy owners are waiving the white flag at this point as both Swift and Adrian Peterson appear locked in ahead of Johnson on the depth chart. As for the Jaguars, James Robinson struggled to get anything going on the ground, and Keelan Cole added 143 yards on six catches. Another flat performance from a wavering Jacksonville team.
Atlanta Falcons 40 - Minnesota Vikings 23 - Atlanta finally gets their first win on the season after firing Dan Quinn. Now the Falcons and Vikings both sit at 1-5 going into Week 7. Matt Ryan (371 yards/three touchdowns/zero interceptions) and Julio Jones (eight receptions/137 yards/two touchdowns) shined in the blowout victory over the Vikings. Minnesota missed star running back, Dalvin Cook, as they couldn't get anything going until the second half when Justin Jefferson and Kirk Cousins connected for two scores. Jefferson is developing into a fantasy standout performer.
Congrats on your first win in ATL, Coach! https://t.co/0QNoYg5Yzw— Atlanta Falcons (@Atlanta Falcons)1603062300.0
Baltimore Ravens 30 - Philadelphia Eagles 28 - As expected the Ravens carried a big lead into the fourth quarter. Unexpectedly, the Eagles scored 22 points in the last quarter and nearly mounted a comeback to send the game to OT. Lamar Jackson needs to run the ball more and it showed again in this game. Jackson finished with 108 yards on the ground and a touchdown, and his 37 yard scoring play was Baltimore's best on the day.
"@Lj_era8 is electrifying when he gets in the open field!" Touchdown ❗️❗️ Tune into the second half on CBS! https://t.co/Vp2d0rXryk— Baltimore Ravens (@Baltimore Ravens)1603048567.0
Pittsburgh Steelers 38 - Cleveland Browns 7 - Pittsburgh's defense hit Baker Mayfield in the mouth all day until he was replaced by Case Keenum late in the game. The Browns probably weren't as good as their 4-1 record heading into this one, but they aren't a bad team. This result is indicative of how good the Steelers are this year. Pittsburgh continued to involve Chase Claypool this week as he finished with four catches for 74 yards and added a score on a rushing play.
And then there were three. @Seahawks | @Steelers | @Titans https://t.co/wk2libIoYI— Sunday Night Football (@Sunday Night Football)1603116900.0
Tennessee Titans 42 - Houston Texans 36 - The Texans were almost able to pull off a victory for their interim head coach, Romeo Crennel like Atlanta did but just fell short. The Titans continue to prove doubters wrong as they roll on now sitting at 5-0. Ryan Tannehill and Derrick Henry combined for 576 yards of offense and six touchdowns! Even though he's gone, the effects of Bill O'Brien's poor management skills will continue to be felt as the cupboard just feels too bare for Deshaun Watson to work with.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 38 - Green Bay Packers 10 - Two things from this game are clear. Tampa Bay's defense is really good and secondly they were ready for Aaron Rodgers and the Packers. The Bucs offense wasn't exceptional and there were no standout performers. To win this big just shows you how ineffective the Packers were against this defense.
San Francisco 49ers 24 - Los Angeles Rams 16 - Jimmy Garoppolo got back on track in a big way this week against a good Rams team. He connected with George Kittle for 109 yards and a touchdown, and Raheem Mostert led the team with 65 yards on the ground. Jared Goff threw for two touchdowns for the Rams but wasn't able to surpass 200 yards passing.
Denver Broncos 18 - New England Patriots 12 - In a game that only saw one touchdown on a Cam Newton run, field goals ruled the day and Denver made six of them. Drew Lock returned as starting QB for Denver this game and still looks like he has some rust to shake off.
Miami Dolphins 24 - New York Jets 0 - The Jets probably could've used the recently released running back Le'Veon Bell in this one as they weren't able to score a single point. Adam Gase needs to be fired immediately and the Jets should forfeit the remainder of their games in 2020.
New York Jets 2020 Season Highlights: https://t.co/wBNd0YYPOh— NFL Memes (@NFL Memes)1603058524.0
As we're just over a week away from seeing the new play-in format the NBA has decided to go with this season, it means that teams are vying to be in the top 10 in their respective conferences to keep their postseason dreams alive.
We have seen LeBron James make public statements opposing the new format even though it was unanimously approved by the NBA Board of Governors last year. It's understandable that James would have negative feelings about the new format as his Lakers have struggled throughout the season as both him and superstar teammate, Anthony Davis, have dealt with injuries which have caused them to miss significant time.
The Lakers are currently in the seventh spot in the west which puts them in line to host the Golden State Warriors in one of the Western Conference play-in games. This is an exciting matchup for fans, but it would put LeBron and the Lakers directly in the sights of MVP frontrunner Steph Curry.
Steph who missed most of last season with an injury is epitomizing what it means to have a comeback season and has overtaken Bradley Beal for the league lead in points per game, now averaging 31.9 on the year. He also leads the NBA in three pointers made by a wide margin. Curry has 324 made threes which is 55 more than Buddy Hield who comes in at second place currently with 269.
Klay Thompson every time Kerr pulls Steph Curry before he breaks his record 😂😂😂 https://t.co/3Vt7NJyV8R— ᕼᗝᗝᗪᎥᗴ 𝙇𝘽𝙅 ➐ (@ᕼᗝᗝᗪᎥᗴ 𝙇𝘽𝙅 ➐)1620534236.0
It's not that the Warriors are a more difficult matchup than what would've been the Lakers' first round opponent in a traditional format where they would have just faced the two seed in the first round, that's not the case.
That would put the Lakers right up against the Phoenix Suns who have shocked the basketball world all season behind the play of Chris Paul and Devin Booker.
Yahoo Source: Lakers star LeBron James (ankle) has had two “really good days of workouts at a high level” and feels… https://t.co/BjAlbmo41E— Chris Haynes (@Chris Haynes)1620656452.0
It's that now, there is a very real chance that we may see a team that has the likes of LeBron James, AD, and a handful of all-stars not making it into the postseason. This is a very bad look for the King if it were to happen. So it's possible that his recent negative comments about the new format is in a way, him doing some preemptive PR in the event that Los Angeles does have to participate in the play-in games and they don't make it past that round.
If the standings remain the same at the end of the regular season and we get a Lakers and Warriors play-in game, it makes for an interesting matchup as the Lakers boast the league's best defensive rating (tied with the 76'ers) but have struggled to get any of their scorers in sustained stretches of success. The Warriors on the other hand lead the league in assists which has always been a staple of the Steve Kerr led team. It would make for an excellent example of what wins between isolation offense and team ball.
Looking over to the Eastern Conference there is another team lurking to steal a playoff spot and disrupt some plans in the early rounds of the playoffs. The Washington Wizards are one of the hottest teams in the league since early April. That's when Bradley Beal returned from a nine game absence. With a full compliment of Beal, Russell Westbrook, and Daniel Gafford available the Wizards are a dangerous team, especially in a play-in game format.
Russell Westbrook tonight: 33 points 19 rebounds 15 assists 181 career triple-doubles And the game winning b… https://t.co/EY8HacJseY— NBA Central (@NBA Central)1620524700.0
The only problem for the Wizards is that news has come out that Beal may miss the rest of the regular season with a hamstring injury. MRI's came back negative for any significant damage, but it's enough that he's being held out for the next few games until there's a chance to have further analysis done. That's not to say he wouldn't be back in time for a potential play-in game or the playoffs, but the team will monitor his situation with caution as he is the catalyst for the team's long term success.
Did Steph Curry know Bradley Beal scored 50 points earlier today before the Warriors tipped off tonight? Steph: "Of course I did." 🤣— Drew Shiller (@Drew Shiller)1620536014.0
If Beal is ready to go however we recently saw Washington go on a 15-4 run since April 7 and there may not be two players in the league that play with a bigger chip on their shoulder than Bradley Beal and Russ. By adding an athletic big man that can get to the rim in Gafford, the Wizards have just enough ammunition to make the top contenders in the east very nervous.
Daniel Gafford (7-7 FG) scored 15 points and blocked three shots in 15 minutes tonight! #WizPacers | @Dan_G33 https://t.co/7hkZMxOYmF— Washington Wizards (@Washington Wizards)1620097359.0
Baseball is a game of hot streaks and slumps, and as a fantasy baseball manager it's sometimes difficult to know when to part with someone on your roster to take a chance on someone new.
Here we'll examine three players you may want to consider moving on from if you have them rostered, and provide three potential replacements for them. Just like in real baseball, sometimes you have to make the tough moves in order to win. But if you don't know what the right moves are to make then you just end up looking like the Pittsburgh Pirates of your fantasy league.
Here's some advice for you so you don't become the Pirates of your league.
Cole Irvin Oakland A's SP (30% Rostered in Yahoo)
Cole Irvin was on his game tonight A's Postgame Live is airing right now on NBC Sports California and streaming he… https://t.co/7ec4GeS6Vv— A's on NBCS (@A's on NBCS)1620187381.0
Irvin hasn't allowed more than two runs in the past four starts and will carry a 3.09 ERA, 1.11 WHIP and 34/5 strikeout to walk ratio heading into his next one against Tampa Bay this weekend. To put how effective Irvin has been into perspective, he's averaging nearly a strikeout per inning while only .1 walk per inning.
Even if Irvin comes back down to earth a little, now is the time to pick him up while he's riding this hot streak. He is coming off a game against the hard-hitting Blue Jays where we saw him set his career-high in strikeouts with nine over eight innings. Take into consideration he has three quality starts (out of six) and his most recent loss was to the Rays who he sees again on Saturday. In that last appearance against Tampa he went six innings, striking out eight, allowed only two runs and earned a quality start in a loss.
If you're looking for a long term option at starting pitcher, Irvin presents a great opportunity to snag a hidden gem off waivers but don't expect him to last much longer if he puts in another strong performance against the Rays on Saturday.
Kyle Hendricks Chicago Cubs SP (88% Rostered in Yahoo)
Kyle Hendricks is dealing GAS to start this game! I’m so happy I drafted him somewhat high in fantasy baseball! He… https://t.co/M5Dfs5SPNG— Vinnie Parise (@Vinnie Parise)1619653359.0
Hendricks seems far removed from his 2016 season where he helped lead the Cubs to a World Series win and finished third in NL Cy Young voting. In the three seasons that would follow we'd see Hendricks' ERA slightly climb higher and his strikeouts decline. We thought we saw a glimmer of hope that his fortunes were reversing in the shortened 2020 season as he did well enough to finish ninth in NL Cy Young voting last year.
However, what we've seen from him this year is enough for us to have already raised the red flag, and at this point we're giving up. It seems early, but if you gave us the straight up choice between Hendricks and the aforementioned Cole Irvin, it's an obvious decision for us.
Hendricks' ERA currently sits at 6.07, but that's only after reducing it from 7.54 in just one game. Sure Hendricks pitched great against the Dodgers in that last start, but it appears that the great start from Hendricks is the anomaly now.
Shane McClanahan Tampa Bay Rays RP (25% Rostered in Yahoo)
So McClanahan is a tough one to put accurate value on as it stands today. What we do know is that he's looked impressive in his two starts this season. Yes, even though McClanahan is listed as a relief pitcher, he's getting starter reps in Tampa. Kind of.
McClanahan is one of the Rays' most valued prospects as a hard throwing lefty and we have seen their plans to limit the amount of pitches we'll get to see from him this season. Going only four innings in both of his starts this season he's amassed a stat line of 2.25 ERA, 1.13 WHIP and has a 10/2 strikeout to walk ratio. He has hit over 100 mph on the gun a few times and has displayed a 93 mph slider.
You may not get a ton of innings out of him or many crooked numbers in the win column, but he is a viable replacement for a reliever in your bullpen that has possibly lost their role as closer.
Alex Colome Minnesota Twins RP (47% Rostered in Yahoo)
@JasonPuckett20 Reminds me of the Alex Colome experience.— Casey Ferguson (@Casey Ferguson)1620191041.0
Speaking of closers who have lost their role, it's time to sell Alex Colome immediately. Twins manager Rocco Baldelli announced on Tuesday that he was moving Colome to a "lower-leverage role" making way for Taylor Rogers to assume the closer position. Now Rogers has also struggled in that role, but considering the struggles we saw out of Colome, it should be safe to assume Baldelli will give some time for the new pecking order to play out.
Don't keep Colome on your roster waiting to see what happens. Go drop him and grab Shane McClanahan for the meantime. Trust us, Colome will be on the waiver wire if you ever want to grab him again.
Willie Calhoun Texas Rangers OF (12% Rostered in Yahoo)
Career-high 9-game hitting streak for Willie Calhoun— Jared Sandler (@Jared Sandler)1619981049.0
If I were to tell you there was a player available in nearly 80% of leagues that has hit .318 with three home runs and five RBI over the last two weeks you would probably be excited to pick him up. Until I told you that player was Willie Calhoun of the Texas Rangers. At that point you would probably have an audible response of "Oh".
But don't sleep on Calhoun, especially when he's riding a hot streak like he is now. That is especially if you had stock in the recently injured Luis Robert.
Luis Robert Chicago White Sox OF (79% Rostered in Yahoo)
Luis Robert was examined today at Rush and a scan showed a grade 3 strain (complete tear) of the hip flexor. Furthe… https://t.co/jwb5TmSIbP— Chicago White Sox (@Chicago White Sox)1620079749.0
Robert suffered a very serious injury this past week, being diagnosed with a Grade 3 hip flexor strain. That doesn't sound as bad as it really is. It's a complete tear, and at this point surgery is still an option being kicked around the organization. The timetable for a return puts Robert out for another 12-16 weeks minimum, but surgery would likely end his season.
Robert and the team's decision may not be decided until later on in his initial recovery stage as they may decide to shut him down for the year if the team is falling out of contention in a very deep AL Central. It would be wise to try to keep him on the injured-reserve list if your league offers one, but if it doesn't or if you are just low on available IL spots don't shy away from dropping Robert.
Sure he was a top pick in your draft, but the likelihood that Robert returns this season is slim already, and by the time he'd be back you would be sacrificing a lot of production from any player that is just flat out healthy and available. Willie Calhoun is a solid option for at least a short-term replacement. Replacing someone like Robert won't be easy and it may require streaming throughout the rest of the season until you find the right player.
Start with Willie Calhoun, because compared to Robert he has one ability that the star prospect doesn't, and that's avail-ability.
Who needs an Avengers incorporated ESPN broadcast when the real nerd-sports crossover is right here?
Welcome to the final round of the basketball fantasy season. You're either in the championship or you've decided that you wanted to set your lineups early and actually enjoy watching basketball.
In any case, you need to fill your rosters and we have the players you need to look out for on those waiver wires.
Oshae Brissett Guard/Forward Indiana Pacers
You'd be excused for not knowing who Oshae Brissett was before this week. He went undrafted in the 2019 NBA Draft and started his professional career in the NBA G League. Now, he is making a name for himself in Indianapolis.
Domantas Sabonis posts a first-half triple-double in the @Pacers victory! Sabonis: 26 PTS, 19 REB, 14 AST Doug McD… https://t.co/zt6NWnvi3L— NBA (@NBA)1619924840.0
Last week, the former Syracuse forward averaged 16 points, made three three-pointers, 10.7 rebounds, 1.3 steals and four blocks. With multiple Pacers players fighting injuries, Brissett should have plenty of opportunities to prove he can be a consistent contributor in the final stretch of the NBA season.
Ricky Rubio Point Guard Minnesota Timberwolves
Much like the Timberwolves, it has been an objectively bad statistical year for the Rubio. Also much like the Timberwolves, even he can have a span of success. Rubio didn't provide a ton in any category this past week, but he did average a solid 10.5 points, 1.8 made threes, four rebounds, 5.3 assists, 2.8 steals and 0.8 turnovers.
Anthony Edwards says he's going to Spain with Ricky Rubio and Juancho Hernangomez this summer. Says he's gonna lea… https://t.co/4tDF6e9KgC— Dane Moore (@Dane Moore)1620270912.0
Rubio may have had a good week, but even his good week isn't much in terms of massive contributions. He may be high on last week's rankings, but he isn't worth the pick-up unless you're really desperate for steals and assists.
Isaiah Stewart Forward/Center Detroit Pistons
Stewart goes back-to-back on the list despite his scoring numbers dropping. In three games last week, Stewart scored 11 points on 53.8 percent shooting, 7.7 rebounds, one steal and 3.3 blocks.
While minutes volatility is still a fear with any Pistons player, Stewart has shown that he can contribute in four or more categories for another week. Pick him up for the rest of the season if you can.
Saddiq Bey Small Forward Detroit Pistons
Bey may still be figuring out how to be successful in the league, but at least he can score like a seasoned vet. In three games last week, he averaged 17 points, four made threes, 7.7 rebounds and 1.3 steals.
Most games with 5+ threes by a rookie in NBA history: 11 — Saddiq Bey 9 — Steph Curry 9 — Allen Iverson https://t.co/2XWEHxrCeo— StatMuse (@StatMuse)1620090686.0
He's still a liability in terms of accuracy (39.5 percent from the field last week), but if you need scoring and rebounding, there aren't a ton of other options on the waiver.
Dillon Brooks Guard/Forward Memphis Grizzlies
The former Duck has developed into a consistent scorer for the Memphis Grizzlies. Unfortunately for fantasy owners, he doesn't provide much else. Last week, he averaged 17.5 points, but only managed to average 1.8 made threes, 1.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 0.8 steals.
Dillon Brooks getting cooked always cleanses the soul https://t.co/sOHc8CzrWa— 𝗧𝘆 𝗝𝗮𝗴𝗲𝗿 (@𝗧𝘆 𝗝𝗮𝗴𝗲𝗿)1620103888.0
He may not provide much in fantasy, but Memphis is fighting hard to stay in the playoff picture. Brooks will have plenty of chances to keep up his scoring numbers so if that's something you require, he is a great option to give you a boost.
Duncan Robinson Guard/Forward Miami Heat
Shooters in fantasy basketball are DCEU movies: Sure, you'll get a Snyder cut of "Justice League" or "Wonder Woman," but you have to wade through the other travesties to really appreciate them. Duncan Robinson's last week was "Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice"-esque.
Fastest to 500 3's, NBA history (regular-season games): 1. Duncan Robinson, 152 2. Luka Doncic, 187 3. Damian Lill… https://t.co/6AUVdWYImI— Tim Reynolds (@Tim Reynolds)1619918867.0
In four games, Robinson averaged three made three-pointers but only 10.3 points, 2.0 rebounds and 0.8 assists. People aren't picking up Robinson for his other stats, but if he's not scoring or shooting at an elite level, he's a tough pickup at best.
Danilo Gallinari Forward Atlanta Hawks
Gallinari's up and down year hit another valley last week when he averaged 10.3 points on 37.9 percent shooting, 1.3 made threes, 3.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists.
With Kevin Huerter and Bodgan Bogdanovic to compete with for minutes, anything consistent from the Italian baller can't be counted on moving forward.
Delon Wright Guard/Forward Sacramento Kings
Wright was making the most of his minutes in Detroit but since he was traded to Sacramento, his lack of opportunity has been frustrating for anyone who manages him. In four games last week, he averaged 10 points, one made three, 3.3 assists and 1.3 steals.
If you are holding out hope that Wright will step up in the finals weeks of the season, I have a monorail I think you'd be interested in.