Evan Power’s Top 10 NHL Power Rankings – Week 13

The NHL has begun to see its fair share of COVID-19 outbreaks, brutal injuries and unforeseen twists and turns on its journey through this shortened season, and with just over one month remaining until the beginning of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the current state of the playoff picture remains a hot mess.

With the worst of the outbreaks in the red view mirror with the Vancouver Canucks, a new one has crashed onto the scene and it is within one of the top contenders in this season’s cup race in the Colorado Avalanche.

The results of these outbreaks are still uncertain, as the toll the virus has taken on players in the NBA gives the world of hockey things to be worried about. Will teams be able to overcome the rough circumstances of catching the virus and set their sights on the bigger picture after all is said and done?

Only time will tell.

As for the current division races, there is plenty of meat left on the bone and stones left unturned, as the final stretch of this 56 game campaign is about to be turned up a notch.

In the North division, the Toronto Maple Leafs have dropped four straight games and their powerplay is at the bulk of the criticism around the teams play. The Winnipeg Jets and Edmonton Oilers appear to be finding their identity over the past couple of weeks and provide a very stout challenge to the offensively superior Leafs.

In the Central, Florida is trying the best they can without the services of captain Aaron Ekblad, but the Carolina Hurricanes still remain the team to beat, with Tampa Bay also finding some inconsistencies in their play.

For the West, the Vegas Golden Knights are going to look to take advantage of the idle Avalanche and get a few W’s on the board as they watch from home. Vegas has been handling business against the lower level teams in the division, which is a good sign of their confidence.

Finally in the East, the Islanders are beginning to find out how difficult it can be to score without one of their top offensive weapons in Anders Lee, and the Boston Bruins deadline deals are paying early dividends as Taylor Hall and Mike Rielly have been an integral part of their current winning streak.

NHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 13:

1. Vegas Golden Knights (Last Week: 4)

Vegas is finally figuring out how they can be most successful, and that is out-working teams instead of trying to outscore them.

Before a few weeks ago, the VGK was playing very high-risk hockey, being involved in a significant amount of high-scoring hockey games that clearly wouldn’t translate well to the postseason.

Since, the Knights have begun to shift their playstyle towards more of a four-line, chip and chase type of play, that has shown its upside with how many goals they are generating deep in their lineup.

2. Carolina Hurricanes (Last Week: 3)

The Canes have been the NHL’s most consistent squad over the course of the year, and with the return of Vincent Trocheck to their lineup, they have a top-six forward group that compares to the best the league has to offer.

They have also been able to avoid injury and possible COVID complications, which goes a long way in showing how careful and mindful they have been amidst the pandemic.

Head coach Rob Brind’Amour has his squad playing to their identity, and this is most definitely not a team that anybody will want to see in the grind of a postseason series.

3. Colorado Avalanche (Last Week: 1)

The Avs got hit with the COVID bug this week resulting in three of their upcoming games being postponed. If all goes to plan, they should be back on the ice in-game action on Thursday.

Prior to the stoppage, the team had been firing on all cylinders, scoring nearly 5 goals a game over the last month, led by the best line in hockey consisting of Nathan Mackinnon, Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog.

4. Tampa Bay Lightning (Last Week: 3)

A team that has just played a whole lot of hockey in the last year and a bit, they just seem to not care that much right now.

After an array of bad losses to the likes of Columbus and Nashville, the Bolts just recently lost their captain Steven Stamkos for a little while to a leg injury. For now, they will await the return of Nikita Kuchrerov in the postseason and hope he can provide another angle of scoring for a team that has relied an awful lot on the bottom of their lineup.

5. New York Islanders (Last Week: 5)

The Isles obviously really miss their captain Anders Lee, and after dominating the Bruins for much of the early season, they just dropped back to back contests against the B’s in a pretty embarrassing fashion.

Without Lee, the Isles are putting more trust into the defensive scheme of Barry Trotz and while it often is a successful way of playing, they sometimes get exposed for their lack of scoring, and it was evident in their mini-set with the Bruins this week.

6. Boston Bruins  (Last Week: 10)

A team to really keep an eye on is the B’s, who seem to have found a diamond in Taylor Hall after a short sample size.

While the Buffalo Sabres are practically paying Taylor Hall to score goals for the Bruins, that move and another one in the addition of Mike Rielly from Ottawa seem to have been great transactions for Don Sweeney’s Bruins.

7. Toronto Maple Leafs (Last Week: 6)

After all of the hype surrounding Jack Campbell, that talk has quickly vanished and the Leafs are slowly starting to infuriate their already edgy fanbase.

Toronto’s powerplay has been among the worst in the league over the past month, and in the playoffs where special teams play such a key role, the likes of the Oilers or Jets stellar powerplays could end up being the end of Toronto’s cup run, one that they invested an enormous chunk of their future into.

8. Edmonton Oilers (Last Week: Unranked)

The Oilers are one of the most dangerously underrated teams in the NHL *when* they get competent goaltending.

Whether it is sustainable or not, if Mike Smith can perform at the level he did on Saturday night in Winnipeg, then this team can play with the best of the best with what they deploy in star power. Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl are running away with the top two spots in the league scoring and #97 is a lock for the MVP, again.

9. Washington Capitals (Last Week: 8)

The Caps added Anthony Mantha at the deadline, but as my good buddy Thanos once said, all it cost was “everything.”

Washington is one of the best pure offensive teams in the league, registering a top PP and five-on-five scoring clip. Yet, if their inexperienced goaltending tandem of Vitek Vanecek and Ilya Samsonov can’t keep the team in games with timely saves, the Caps can’t truly expect to have a realistic shot this year with their ageing core.

10. Winnipeg Jets (Last Week: Unranked)

The Jets get the tenth spot this week, even with teams like Pittsburgh, Florida and the Rangers making an interesting argument.

The Jets have a deep group of forwards, but their playstyle is very reliant on their good powerplay and ability to limit the quality of scoring chances against.

If Connor Hellebyuck continues this Vezina caliber play down the stretch, Winnipeg should have enough success to give the other two top teams in Canada a scare in the first couple of rounds.

Evan Power, Evolution 107.9

Evaluating the Current NBA Playoff Picture

Over the course of this NBA season, there have been so many season-altering injuries, intriguing transactions and unexpected breakout performers that have changed the perspective on the current state of the playoff picture.

Regardless of who your favorite team is and how they are doing in the standings, from an overall competition standpoint, this NBA season seems to be up in the air for the taking, and there is plenty of dust still to be settled amongst the leagues elite.

In the western conference, injuries to the brightest stars of the conference have overshadowed an otherwise very balanced field. LeBron James and Anthony Davis have missed significant time for the NBA champion Lakers, Jamaal Murray is out for the year for the young Nuggets and just the other day we saw Jazz guard Donavan Mitchell leave a game early with a scary lower leg injury.

There are about five very legitimate teams in the West this year, and all of them have the potential to be crowned an NBA champion this summer.

The Lakers need to get healthy, once they are at the point of full strength, they are the no-doubt favorite to reach the NBA Finals out of the west.

The Phoenix Suns currently sit in second place in the west, a crazy feat for a team that has been a basement dweller of the league for years prior to the arrival of Chris Paul.

The other three teams are familiar contenders who have had some playoff success in the past, the Clippers, Jazz and Nuggets are all viable options to make a deep run in this postseason.

On the outside looking in, it is hard to ignore what Steph Curry is doing for the Warriors. He is scoring at a crazy high clip right now and single handily keep Golden State in the mix for the NBA play-in tournament that will send the final two playoff teams into the bracket.

https://twitter.com/CurrysGoated/status/1383868011719708683?s=20

Over in the East, it is a top-heavy race of the big three-headed monster. The Brooklyn Nets have made the required moves to be considered the biggest threat to the Lakers for the NBA title, yet they can’t seem to get healthy and have all of their top guns on the floor at the same time.

While the Nets fight through the injury bug, the Philadelphia 76ers continue to be a force for any team. With the return of Joel Embiid, the Sixers are looking like a very complete team, especially on the defensive end.

Rounding out the top three, the Milwaukee Bucks are still figuring out their consistency dilemma. Some nights they look like a team that will be a top title contender, while other nights look like they have never played together. The Bucks are a team with a lot of playoff expectations due to their lack of recent success in the postseason, and another early exit will not sit well for the job of head coach Mike Budenholzer.

After the top three teams in the East, the middle of the pack is a very tightly contested race to avoid having to enter the play-in tournament.

The Atlanta Hawks, New York Knicks, Boston Celtics and Miami Heat are all just finding their identities after many up and downs to this point, and they are trailed by a pack of under .500 teams that are still looking to find that extra gear.

The Predictions:

Prior to the season, I predicted that we would see a matchup of the 76ers vs. Bucks in the East finals. Much has transpired since those predictions, causing me to have to reconsider my selections ahead of my final predictions before the playoffs.

With the acquisition of James Harden to an already potent offensive lineup, the Nets seem like the team to beat in the East and will most likely have a pretty unscathed route to the conference finals.

Alongside them, the Philadelphia 76ers should finally overcome their second-round woes and make it as well, setting up a battle of interior domination and defense versus outside shooting and pace.

The 76ers will be considered underdogs in this series, as they should be. I believe it will be very tightly contested especially with both arenas swallowing fans back in the buildings, making for homecourt advantage like we haven’t seen in a few years.

The Nets are too good though, their depth off the bench with the likes of Blake Griffin, Jeff Green and Landry Shamet provide more than what the Sixers bench can do, and the shot-making ability of Brooklyn will be too much for the foul-reliant offense Philly runs.

East Finals: Brooklyn beats Philadelphia in 6 Games

Out west, my preseason prediction was the classic Lakers vs Clippers duel everyone wanted to see last season in the bubble.

Since then, both squads have only added to their already stacked rosters. The Clippers now have a long line of shotmakers in Nic Batum, Luke Kennard and Terrance Mann. Serge Ibaka and Ivica Zubac on the inside will have their hands full with Anthony Davis, Andre Drummond and Montrezl Harrell.

With the injury to Jamaal Murray, I don’t see the Nuggets being able to muster enough to go pound for pound with the Clippers or Lakers this time around, but the Utah Jazz and Phoenix Suns are definitely capable of pulling an upset.

With that being said, I am sticking to my prediction of Lakers vs Clippers in the Western Conference finals for 2021, with the Lakers returning back to the NBA Finals and beating the Clippers in 7 games.

Setting up what will be an NBA Finals for the ages. Barring both teams are at full strength, this could go down as one of the most star-studded NBA Finals to date.

LeBron James chasing number five, just one away from MJ’s six. Kevin Durant will look to defeat LeBron for the third straight time in an NBA Finals, and Kyrie will go against the man he once lifted the Larry O’Brien Trophy with, in Cleveland.

Buckle your seatbelts folks, we are headed for the stretch drive.

Evan Power, Evolution 107.9

 

Where the Vancouver Canucks Go From Here

After going nearly one month without playing a single game due to an absurdly out-of-control COVID-19 outbreak within the team’s personnel, the Vancouver Canucks hit the ice on Sunday evening for a game that many thought wouldn’t be a real contest.

After more than 20 players and coaching staff contracted the virus, the Canucks season was put on halt as the health of the people involved came to the forefront of the NHL’s priority list.

After the team was supposed to be resuming play this past Friday, it took an emotional and distraught JT Miller press conference calling out the NHL’s plan to resume so quickly to get the team a few extra days to get their legs, and lungs back into safe, playing shape.

When the division-leading Toronto Maple Leafs rolled into town on Sunday, it was expected to be quite ugly for the Canucks, who already were up against it enough with the return off of a long lay-off, but now had to go up against the high-powered Leafs led by Rocket Richard lock Auston Matthews.

Once the puck dropped, it was clear that this Canucks team was going to show their pride and professionalism by now just rolling over in a game where they most definitely weren’t expected to be might of a fighter.

They got out to an early 1-0 deficit on a goal by William Nylander, and it looked for a little while that it was just a matter of time before the Leafs really took out a lot of offensive frustration on them, as they came in on a three-game losing skid of their own.

Vancouver found a way to push back, though. A true team performance with captain Bo Horvat at the head of the snake. Brayden Holtby was on his A-game on this night, which was astonishing because he fought through his own battle with COVID-19.

Although they were heavily outshot and fell behind 2-0 on the 33rd goal of the year by Matthews, Vancouver punched back in a big way.

Bo Horvat stepped it up a notch, scoring a beautiful goal down the left side of the ice and sniping upstairs on Jack Campbell. After that, rookie Nils Höglander got on the board, and it was a new game.

From there, it was survival of the fittest, or in this case survival of the un-fittest.

In a deadlock after sixty minutes, Bo Horvat struck again in 3 on 3 OT to give the COVID-ridden Canucks a 3-2 victory in their first game since March 24th.

So it sparks the question in the minds of many frustrated Canucks fans during this roller-coaster through hell called the 2021 NHL season: What will this squad be able to do before the end of the year?

It may be unfair to automatically pin the expectations of playoffs on this team who was already getting hit with the injury bug before being struck by COVID-19 and a brutal variant of it for that matter. Yet, that is obviously what the players of Vancouver will have their sights on regardless of how realistic it is.

If the long stoppage provided any benefits for the team, it is that the schedule was finally able to catch up for them, as they were out ahead of the pack in games played for the majority of the year, they now have games in hand on every team in front of them in the North standings.

If we are considering the playoffs as a realistic outcome for the team this year, they currently sit ten points behind the Canadiens for the final playoff spot in the division with for games in hand.

They will obviously need a whole lot of help from the surrounding teams in their division, as well as big regulation wins against the Calgary Flames who will look to make a push of their own.

Another major question remaining for the final 18 games of their schedule is how they will manage to play all of these in such a tight time frame. It is so taxing to play this many games in such a short time as a healthy player, let alone coming off the stipulations this team has.

They will play the final 18 scheduled games in a tight span of thirty nights, where the Canucks will look to slowly add more bodies back to their currently depleted lineup that is currently rostering the likes of Jalen Chatfield, Mark Michaelis and Tyler Graovac.

Finally, we will see how the end of this campaign affects the team from a financial perspective, as well. With Elias Pettersson and Quinn Hughes set to sign their new, lucrative contracts this offseason, this final stretch will be interesting in determining how the two players are utilized.

Hughes went through a rough battle with the virus, so we may see him get load managed a few times before the end of the year. As for Pettersson, he had the extra few weeks to keep rehabbing his injured wrist, but there is no clear timetable on if or when he may return to game action.

“He went to see the specialist on Wednesday,” said GM Jim Benning. “He’s on the ice skating now and stuff, he’s going to continue to rehab, but we don’t have a timeline yet as to when he’s going to be back, if he’s going to be back at all.”

For the fans of this team, most will be understanding regardless of how this season finishes. Seeing the girt and tenacity they displayed tonight after such a long time off, against a high-quality opponent like the win-hungry Leafs, it should excite people for the possibilities of a playoff push to end the year.

This is not something that was expected for a team in Canada, so after enduring some of the toughest health battles these men have ever experienced, the Canucks would like nothing more than to set an example of what kind of team they want to be, tough, resilient and determined as ever.

Evan Power, Evolution 107.9

 

 

 

2021 NFL Mock Draft – Top 5

With the 2021 NFL Draft just around the corner, the dust of all the offseason switching and swapping has settled and 32 teams around the league have their sights set on the big night coming up on April 29th.

After last year’s virtual draft, the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell are making the move to host a full, live draft event for players and families this time around. The event will be conducted in Cleveland, Ohio with a limited number of vaccinated spectators who will be in the building to see 32 first-round draft prospects’ lives change forever.

To recap what has gone down to this point in terms of draft position, it definitely appears to be an extremely quarterback-heavy top 10. With the San Francisco 49ers moving into the third spot and the New York Jets trading away their starting QB Sam Darnold, even the top five could see 4 signal-callers get selected.

One of the most interesting developments about the moves that were made includes those 49ers and head coach Kyle Shanahan.

Shanahan has never seemed like the type to pull off this type of high-risk move. Giving up plenty of future draft compensation for a chance to select a project quarterback still doesn’t make much sense to me. Perhaps they are seeing what is going on around the NFL, with the Justin Herbert’s of the world, but we know those don’t just fall off trees…

The early word out of San Fran’s camp is that they have their sights set on Alabama’s Mac Jones with the third pick. Definitely a questionable and risky call, but we must also remember how much of a sample size there was for Jones at Bama, as well as how well he played under coach Nick Saban.

With weapons like Devonta Smith, Jaylon Waddle and Najee Harris. Coaches like Saban and offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian, it would’ve been difficult for Mac Jones NOT to put up some pretty lofty numbers. With that being said, if there is anyone who can maximize a player’s potential in a brilliant scheme, it is Kyle Shanahan, and they have weapons aplenty.

2021 NFL Mock Draft –

Based on what I believe teams are going to do, not what I think they should do. Keep in mind that as of right now, the top five appear to be pretty set in stone, but Atlanta is a hot topic to watch over the next week or so in regards to trading their #4 pick.

1. Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence, Quarterback, University of Alabama

The easiest draft pick since Andrew Luck, newly-appointed head coach in Jacksonville, Urban Meyer will sprint to the stage to call this one.

Lawrence has it all and then some, and it has been on display ever since he led Clemson to a national title as a true freshman in 2019. He has a dazzling touch when throwing a football, like he is pin-point accurate in the short game, along with the long-ball.

He is big, which is really important to every scout in the history of sports. In this case, Lawrence’s size makes him unique in a way that we haven’t really seen anyone this long be able to move the way he does.

Lastly, he has everything in front of him. Lawrence is an engaged man, with proud family history and fine education at Clemson. In four years, he built a strong reputation with everyone from his teammates to the janitors, he’s an ace.

2. New York Jets: Zach Wilson, Quarterback, BYU

J-E-T-S, JETS JETS JETS! Back in the top 3 of an NFL draft is not what Jets fans had been hoping for after taking Sam Darnold at number 3 overall just three years ago. Now, after dealing away Darnold and revamping their coaching staff, a new life is building in the Big Apple.

Zach Wilson wasn’t on first-round draft boards prior to this season, which is amazing because it almost felt like with how strange this past college football season was, Wilson was the one player to make the absolute most of the situation.

He’s an insanely exciting player to watch, which makes this pick that much more thirst-quenching for Jets fans who have been starved of exciting football for too long. Along with his talent level and flashy play, Wilson is touted for his leadership ability and how vocal he is on the field, which should translate well onto a Robert Salah-led team.

3. San Francisco 49ers: Justin Fields, Quarterback, Ohio State University

I know all we’re hearing about this pick is Mac Jones, but I have a hard time believing that after making the expensive deal to move up to this spot, that San Fran is just planning to ‘play it safe’ and settle for a limited product that is Jones.

Justin Fields is most likely the biggest ‘project pick’ among these big-name QB’s. He is often sporadic, with his decision-making and reads mainly and sometimes it gets him into trouble as we saw in the National Championship game against powerhouse Alabama.

Yet, these are things that we hear lots with any prospects in a regular year, that they have the raw talent but need tweaking. I think due to how spoiled we are with this class it is easy for us to pinpoint things that should diminish a player stock, but it’s really not fair for a great player like Fields to get overlooked because he has ‘things to work on.

Fields is quick, he’s the fastest QB in this class by a country mile. He also has a big arm, not always accurate but it’s got great depth. Fields led Ohio State to a massive win over Clemson in the CFP semi-finals which went a long way in showing us his toughness and grit.

I really hope SF goes with Fields and doesn’t set Mac Jones up to be the best of the draft.

4. Atlanta Falcons: Kyle Pitts, Tight End, University of Florida

I think the Falcons would be silly not to trade this pick.

Just go down to number 9, give the Broncos Trey Lance and pick up an extra second, maybe even get their first-rounder next year out of them, but this pick should be dealt.

Atlanta’s glaring need is on the defensive side of the ball, where they were battered with injuries and never really stood a chance in any game last season if they didn’t score 35 points on offense.

If they do pick here, I expect them to go with the can’t miss option in Florida pass-catcher Kyle Pitts. Pitts is a massive, zoomy tight end that can change the dynamic of an offense and force defenses to pay attention to.

Alongside a healthy Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley, this Falcons offense could be nearly unstoppable with Pitts.

Trade the pick Atlanta.

5. Cincinnati Bengals: Penei Sewell, Offensive Tackle, University of Oregon

With Joe Burrow returning off a season-ending ACL tear this coming season, the Bengals are going to have to go all-in on protecting their franchise savior.

Sewell is a mammoth amongst men on the football field. Probably the second-best player in the draft in terms of talent and NFL-ready potential, Sewell will step in and play well right away for the Bengals next year.

In a draft where the offensive tackle position is rich, and lots of players are expected to be selected within the first few rounds, Sewell is a level above them all, and having opted-out of the college season last year, you know he is ready to lay some blocks in Cinci.

Evan Power, Evolution 107.9

 

 

 

 

The Places You’ll Go

Before anything great is really achieved, your comfort zone must be disturbed.”

Those are the words of NFL hall-of-fame linebacker Ray Lewis. That man is a 12-time pro bowl, 2-time defensive player of the year linebacker, with the greatest leadership skills the NFL has ever seen and two Super Bowl rings to show for it.

Though, in this moment of writing one of my final articles for Evolution and putting the finishing touches on my time at BCIT, that quote has nothing to do with sports, for me.

The greatest obstacles in life are the ones you can’t see or feel, they’re the obstacles you go through in your mind. The thoughts and feelings you get about doing certain things, whether you hate them or are scared of them, or even just flat-out try to ignore them.

Those are the obstacles that every single person on this planet wakes up every day to try and get a little closer to getting through. Leaving your house every morning, laying one brick at a time towards something you know you can build, there is no greater feeling than finally accomplishing what once scared the sh*t out of you.

That was truly my life before going back to school. I was a 19-year old, about a year off of graduating high school. Working full-time, I didn’t really have a plan. I knew one thing; I loved to speak and write. I also loved everything about sports.

So one night I decided it was time to take a look around for something new. A new path or journey that will hopefully lead me to my next clue in life. I needed new motivation and reason, so I began to look around for post-secondary programs…

Looking through all types of broadcasting and journalism programs, the options were endless. At one point I was even on the phone with the College of Sports Media in Ontario.

Once I stumbled upon the Radio Arts & Entertainment program at BCIT, I didn’t really think anything of it. I applied for a spot in the program and after a few weeks of setting things up, I was enrolled to go to post-secondary, I was headed back to school.

Reminiscing back on the early days of being a student at BCIT is difficult because it was really a completely different world than it is as I depart. I recall back to my very first day, I didn’t know one single person within 10 kilometers of campus. What I did know is that it was a chance to get back out there and meet new people, temporary or not, it was exciting.

As things slowly ramped up, the next two years began to become a longshot. I couldn’t tell you how many times I just wanted to get up and leave, not because of any external factors, just because of how uncomfortable I was in the setting.

Eventually, it got easier, as everything single other thing does in this crazy life. I met some new classmates that I now consider great friends of mine. We helped each other with our assignments and projects, but we also just talked about stuff. The types of friendships you find in the most uncomfortable situations are ones that should be cherished.

Looking back on some of the things I have learned, not only out of the books or the powerpoints but also about myself, these are the lessons that are irreplaceable. The past two years have given me a better perspective on how to approach my life, because of how tough things were to actually get up and do.

I picked up lessons along the way like they were coins and I was Mario. About 20 months ago, Gord Eno told my classmates and I that this was going to the fastest two years of our lives, and now I can officially say that he was right.

Rachael Hunter taught me how important it was to remain on schedule, something I literally had problems with since I was missing my soccer practices at 11 years old. Throughout business communications class, Rachael made sure that we paid the utmost attention to detail, and pushed us to be better with every assignment.

Brian Wiebe was an instructor that you would think is your close bro until you realize he’s your teacher again. I will always remember going to grab a coffee from Tim’s and just chilling with the squad in journalism class, talking about interesting things for the first ten minutes, it didn’t feel like school at all.

These are just a shred of the examples I can talk about on why I enjoyed my experience at BCIT. Of course, it had its downtimes. We may have had equipment or space trouble, or a deadly global pandemic strike in the middle of our time in the program, but I’m here and I’m alive.

I can say with one-hundred-percent honesty, that this has been a stint of time I will cherish for the rest of my life. Of course, the school is great and the knowledge is awesome to have in my back pocket, but it goes far beyond what I can do or write on a piece of paper when it comes to what I leave BCIT with.

I leave with a vision, empowerment, and THE ABILITY TO DO YOGA!

I leave with opportunity and growth, and the feeling of being able to attack the next task on my list of things to do in my twenties.

I wish I could have seen you more, and we could’ve celebrated tonight at the bar on campus, but to my classmates, I respect all of you and have no doubt you can do whatever you set your minds to. You made this time so enjoyable and I am hyped for the future.

To myself, I am proud of you man. You got out of your comfort zone and made it to the point you once thought wouldn’t come. It isn’t much, but it’s got to be at least a couple of bricks on this house of life.

 

How Have Recent NHL Trade Deadline Deals Gone?

WIth the 2021 NHL trade deadline coming up on Monday, the shape of the playoff picture as well as the final drive to the postseason for many teams could be shaped by how much they do, or don’t do on this crazy day.

Already we have been treated to deals that involve big-name players heading to new scenes in an attempt to bolster very good squads. Today, Nick Foligno went from Columbus to Toronto and we are literally just now receiving details of Taylor Hall headed to the Bruins.

NHL GMs don’t wait for trade deadline day to decide if their team is in need of fresh faces, in fact, they probably know what the deadline plan is months in advance. Yet, once the deadline rolls around and the seller’s market begins to find its footing, it seems there are always bidding wars taking place until the wee hours of the cutoff time.

It isn’t always what the teams do at trade deadline time that makes the headlines, but actually what they don’t do is often more decisive.

For example, just last season we saw most of the biggest fish in the pond go to teams that wouldn’t necessarily be considered Stanley Cup chasers. The likes of Tyler Toffoli and Taylor Hall ended up in situations where the teams they went to were mostly in need of help in their playoff push.

With that, the teams that were silent like the Dallas Stars and New York Islanders each found themselves just a few wins away from Lord Stanley’s holy grail after not making any significant additions midseason.

Once tomorrow’s deadline passes, it will be interesting to see what the new landscape of the NHL playoff picture looks like, and what teams appeared to have positioned themselves for a big run.

Let’s take a look back at some of the biggest trade deadline moves we have seen in NHL history, and how the teams that were involved in the major swap faired after the fact.

The Biggest Trade Deadline Splashes:

Buffalo trades Evander Kane to San Jose

2018 was the year of the trade deadline. Kane wasn’t even the biggest name in the mix this season, as the Bruins made a huge move in the acquisition of Rick Nash from the Rangers.

As for Kane, he escaped the career-killing trends that players who sign contracts in Buffalo tend to live out. After being sent to the San Jose Sharks for a first-round pick, Kane has actually made very good use of his time in San Jose.

After signing an extension to remain in San Jose, the Vancouver native has scored plenty of goals for the Sharks and even through their transitioning period, he remains a pillar of their offensive attack and should remain a key piece of their core for a few more years.

As for the Sabres, everyone knows how it’s going over there.

Fiala, Duchene, Muzzin and Stone Find New Homes in 2019

The 2019 deadline was as busy as it gets for one day in regards to the number of big-name players that were shipped out of their respective cities.

Starting in Columbus where GM Jarmo Kakkolainen went all-in and gave his Blue Jackets an opportunity to do some major damage in the postseason. With pending UFA’s Artemi Panarin and Sergei Bobrovsky clearly ready to move on in the summer, CBJ picked up Matt Duchene from Ottawa.

The Jackets went on to SWEEP the overwhelming favorite Lightning in round one to capture their first-ever NHL playoff series victory, and Duchene was a major part of their run, with 10 points in 10 games.

On the same day, the Wild and Preds swapped young projects, with Kevin Fiala headed to Minny for Mikael Granlund. A trade that looks to be in the favor of the Wild with how stellar Fiala looks to be developing.

Among the Canadian teams, the Leafs went out and got a bruising defenceman that many said was their biggest hole that needed bolstering. The Kings sent Jake Muzzin to Toronto for a prospect and a first-round pick. ALthough future capital is always a risk to give up, the Leafs got their guy and he is currently powering their blue line into cup favorite status.

Finally, the biggest deal on this day was for the Vegas Golden Knights, giving up prized defensive prospect Erik Brannstrom and multiple drafts pick for Mark Stone of Ottawa, one of the best two-way forwards in the league.

A deal that has reaped benefits for both sides, Vegas most definitely has no regrets in this one. Now dawing the ‘C’ as the franchise’s first-ever captain, Stone’s presence in the Vegas lineup has them as one of the best teams in the NHL right now, and Ottawa got the pieces they wanted to continue towards the future.

Canes and Leafs win big, Canucks and Coyotes get robbed in 2020

2020 had a deadline that many NHL GMs most likely wish they just shut off their phones for. With the pandemic just a few weeks away, NHL teams unknowingly gave up hefty capital for pieces that really didn’t end up providing much value.

This trade deadline scam affected no one worse than Vancouver, who gave up a highly touted prospect in Tyler Madden and a second-round pick for Tyler Toffoli from LA.

Toffoli, a pending UFA, actually played stellar for Vancouver. It was just the pandemic arriving and shortening the season that made the deal so disastrous. In the playoffs, Toffoli was injured for the entirety of the play-in round and round one.

Now gone to the Montreal Canadiens after not even being contacted by Vancouver in free agency, Toffoli left an unfulfilling impact on Vancouver and they paid a crucial price for it, on paper at least.

Also on the short end of the stick, the Arizona Coyotes also gave up future capital for the services of a scoring winger. Hall helped the Coyotes get past the play-in round, but after falling short in the opening round, he then left to the Buffalo Sabres in free agency and made the price Arizona paid for him look pretty awful.

As for the steals of this day last year, look nowhere else than some of the league’s elite right now.

Vincent Trocheck was an outcast with Florida, and after being dealt at last year’s deadline, he has looked like a new player in Carolina. Leading the Canes in points per game and goals per game, Trocheck found a home and the Canes pulled off an absolute heist for one of the best second-line centers in the game.

Lastly, current starting goaltender and NHL record holder for most consecutive victories as a goalie, Jack Campbell was sent to the Leafs in another deal between these two teams on opposite sides of the spectrum.

Campbell improved to 11-0-0 on Saturday, and all they gave to LA was a second-rounder.

Can’t wait to see what takes place before the 12:00 pm deadline on Monday.

Evan Power, Evolution 107.9

 

 

Sunday at Augusta

The 2021 Masters have brought upon unexpected and unprojectable twists and turns over the first three days of play. Heading into Saturday’s action, the leaderboard had been rock-solid with Englishman Justin Rose sitting at the top, but after another absolutely wild moving day at Augusta National, we are in for an uber-intriguing final day of the tournament.

We saw the things that make this event and golf course so amazing and unpredictable, from hole-in-ones to wipeouts on the mushy footing, the golf has been a spectacle in itself so far.

After the cuts were made before Saturday’s round, notable names such as defending champ Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka and Rory Mcilroy all had their bid for a green jacket come to an abrupt end.

This increased the chances of seeing someone unheralded take the win this year. With the likes of Justin Thomas and Jordan Speith still in the hunt, it was someone’s for the taking on day three. With these big-name players and many others jousting for a position on a cold, wet day at Augusta, it was a surprising man that we saw scale the ranks and submit the most superb scorecard of all.

29-year-old Hideki Matsuyama, a Japanese golf sensation and past contender at the Masters, came into the third round three strokes back of the standing leader Justin Rose. Many hours and a rain delay later, he walked off the 18th green as the active leader at eleven-under par.

https://twitter.com/PGATOUR/status/1381019876274343937?s=20

Four birdies, an eagle and some outstanding par saves powered Matsuyama to a 7-under par, bogey-free round (65) and a hard night’s sleep as the current favorite for the green jacket. Should Hideki hold on through what is expected to be a crazy Sunday at Augusta, he will become the very first Japanese-born player to ever win a major championship on the PGA Tour.

As I mentioned, day three was rudely interrupted by mother nature when an hour-long rain delay halted the players in the middle of their rounds and forced them to return when the skies cleared.

Clearly, this made some and broke some. To many surprises, it was the usual steady-as-ever Justin Thomas that seemed to falter after the delay, putting up four bogeys and a double-bogey once play resumed to close out an ugly round with eh putter.

As for the leader, Matsuyama seemed to be even more locked in after the delay, which he said he just sat in his car for, using his cell phone to pass the time.

As for the Canadian Corey Connors, his day was up and down. The up was as high as it could possibly get when he followed up a bogey on the fifth with an ace (hole-in-one) on the sixth. Connors put up a steady -4 on the round thanks to the big ace and sits at -6 on the tournament, just 5 strokes behind Matsuyama.

In the Mix:

Looking at the other sharks in the water, surrounding Matsuyama and his 4 shot lead are some players you would think could make a push, and others you may have not heard of at all.

World number 6 ranked Xander Schauffle sits tied for second at -7, and Jordan Spieth one behind him at -6. Newcomers to the top of the major leaderboard are 24 years old Will Zalatoris and tour veteran from Australia Marc Leishman.

The trusty Tony Finau enters Sunday 8 back of the lead but is a popular pick to make a push just because of the fact Tom Brady called him during the delay on Saturday, which may feel like a win regardless of the rough +1 round.

Something to keep in mind is how much pressure is applied in these situations. Not only for the leader, but the ones chasing him. It is never smart to rule out the big comeback, so players like Justin Thomas or Patrick Reed should always be on the radar no matter what their scores look like entering the day.

There have been a few meltdowns before on this golf course, and it’s never over until the jacket is being put on the winner.

Expect Sunday’s pressure to be a little bit more ramped up for those at the top. With the return of patrons to this year’s tournament and a beautiful day of sun in Augusta, Georgia, it will be a very different setting for a major closing day that any of the players have seen in quite some time.

Sunday at The Masters

Speaking of the weather, we shouldn’t expect any rain delays today, in fact, it should be quite the opposite.

27 degrees celsius and mostly clear skies, perfect weather for the golf course and its sustainability after a few soggy days. Players in the featured groups who are teeing off between 10:30 am and 1:45 pm PST will see the majority of the sun as their round progresses, and the winner’s presentation should be as beautiful as ever.

The tee times and groups are set and it looks quite different than many would’ve projected.

11:10 am – Jordan Spieth (-5), Brian Harman (-4)
11:20 am – Will Zalatoris (-7), Corey Conners (-6)
11:30 am – Marc Leishman (-7), Justin Rose (-7)
11:40 am – Hideki Matsuyama (Leader, (-11), Xander Schauffele (-7)

Sunday will go one of two ways, Hideki Matsuyama will run away with a green jacket or he will blow this lead away and do so very quickly. Matsuyama will need to establish a good stroke in the front nine and set himself up for the back. Allowing himself to make a few mistakes while not getting too into his head will dictate where this major goes.

Excitement will not be hard to come by this Sunday, one of the biggest dates on the sports calendar.

Evan Power, Evolution 107.9

 

NHL Trade Deadline Primer

During one of the most straining and unclear NHL seasons in the history of hockey, teams around the NHL are prepping for a trade deadline where the moves that are made could make or break the rest of this campaign, as well as seasons to come.

2021 is a different animal when it comes to the trade market and the approach of the 31 general managers league-wide. With the shortened season and obscure playoff format that sees the first two rounds consist of divisional series’, there is plenty of hesitation to determine whether someone is a buyer or a seller.

There are many complications to keep in mind as we enter this year’s deadline. Trading over the USA/Canada border is one scenario that is of concern to mainly Canadian teams, as any player brought in could be forced to not enter the lineup for a week or longer.

Another is the recent surge in active COVID cases within the NHL players circle, examples in Vancouver and perhaps Colorado to name a few that make it difficult to judge the status of players after missing so much time.

Last but not least, the NHL expansion draft set for this summer and the emergence of the Seattle Kraken provides an angle of trade possibilities as teams have more than likely already created their protection lists and maybe looking into trimming the fat and gaining some value or capital for these extra players.

The Latest:

There have already been a few moves that have transpired in the days leading up to the Monday deadline, and a couple involving some contenders that are clearly wanting to bolster their lineup with eyes on a deep playoff run.

Today the Toronto Maple Leafs sent a conditional 7th round pick to the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for center Riley Nash, a gritty, depth forward that can provide a steady defensive presence and penalty killing help.

The New York Islanders made the biggest headline yet in the trade market, acquiring Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac from the Devils for NYI’s first-round pick in this June’s draft and a conditional fourth.

In Montreal, GM Marc Bergevin picked up some depth in center Erik Staal from the Sabres last week for a third-round pick, and Staal took little time to make him look good for it after potting the overtime winner in his second game for the Habs.

These are all moves that make sense for the teams involved in the matter of rebuilders being sellers and playoff teams being buyers, meaning it also may be a sign of things to come.

On the Watchlist:

With every trade deadline comes plenty of speculation and rumors that get brought into the spotlight by nature of the occasion. Although maybe not always true, the rumors are what make the sport so intriguing off the ice and also keeps the TV panels and radio hosts busy.

At the top of TSN’s trade bait board, we see a big defensive defenceman that could be of value to almost every good team in the NHL. David Savard of the Blue Jackets would be able to bring in quite the lucrative haul for GM Jarmo Kakkolainen, but with the recent injury news of Zach Werenski being done for the season, it may give CBJ second thoughts.

Back on the board like he was last season, Taylor Hall is just looking for a place to find himself again. What will be his fifth team in his career, you can almost guarantee Hall will be moved before the deadline. Keep an eye on the Colorado Avalanche and New York Islanders in respect to the services of Hall, both teams who could use the offensive upside he provides.

Also on the board are solid additions like Mike Hoffman (STL), Nick Foligno (CBJ) and goaltender Jonathan Bernier (DET).

Buyers?

This term is thrown around on a yearly basis to teams that consider themselves in the hunt for either the playoffs or even the Stanley Cup. As evident as ever was last season’s deadline, where the Tampa Bay Lightning shipped out a large portion of their future capital and brought in players that eventually enabled them to win it all.

With the COVID-19 pandemic overshadowing a lot of potential moves, we may not see something quite of that magnitude this year, but that’s not to say there won’t still be plenty of active market watchers.

The Florida Panthers currently find themselves in a three-horse race for the top spot in the central division. come playoff time, the number one seed in this division may be the most valuable of all, as it means the team at the top can avoid the dreaded 2 vs. 3 matchup in round one.

With the injury to captain and top defenseman Aaron Ekblad, it is believed that the Panthers could be kicking the tires on blue-line help around the league, perhaps the likes of David Savard or Josh Manson of Anaheim.

Another possible buyer? The Nashville Predators, who have fought themselves out of an early-season stumble and currently sit in a playoff position. Rumors that they were interested in shipping away stud defenseman Mathias Ekholm have vanished, and they might be a team to watch in regards to acquiring talent.

Sellers:

I think it is finally time for the Calgary Flames to relieve themselves of their unreachable expectations. After going on a spending spree this offseason, the Flames are more than likely going to miss the postseason by a country mile, meaning it may be time to explore a more future-oriented deadline.

Whether it is Sean Monahan, Johnny Gaudreau, Sam Bennett, or even team captain Mark Giordano, don’t be surprised if we see Flames GM Brad Treliving start to move some major pieces knowing his job may be in jeopardy.

Finally, a team that literally has no choice, the Buffalo Sabres.

I will state the obvious, this team isn’t making the postseason. With an extensive soul-search and house-cleaning needed in Buffalo, they should start with this Monday’s deadline and send away anything of value, from Taylor Hall to Sam Reinhart, anything at this point…

Evan Power, Evolution 107.9

 

Evan Power’s Top 10 NHL Power Rankings – Week 11

With the NHL trade deadline approaching, it is coming up on the point of the NHL season where teams begin to designate whether they are in the race or out of it.

General managers around the league will determine if their teams are buyers or sellers by the April 12th deadline, and as of right now there are plenty of intriguing trade chips amongst the league’s 31 teams that could be of value for contenders and teams on the bubble.

In the north division, the Leafs and Oilers split a pair of overtime decisions in Edmonton during the week, as Toronto goalie Jack Campbell has continued to dominate the crease, we slowly begin to wonder about the job security of Frederik Andersen in TO.

Sticking to the north, the Montreal Canadiens made their return off an eight-day COVID stoppage in their schedule, taking down the Oilers and Sens by a combined score of 8-1, before dropping the second of a back-to-back with Ottawa.

As for the hometown Vancouver Canucks, there is nothing we can do besides wait and be supportive of the team at this moment as they have fallen upon difficult times. Over half the players and staff of the Canucks have tested positive for COViD-19 over the past 5 days, and there is no true timetable for when the team will be able to return.

Looking at the current risers around the NHL, the Nashville Predators have seemed to find a second life in their short campaign, as they are sitting in the fourth and final playoff spot in the central division as of today.

People were quick to write off the Preds in March, but powered by the scoring of rookie Eeli Tolvanen and Roman Josi, and the outstanding goaltending of Jusse Saros, Nashville looks like a team that is not ready to rebuild in any way.

Also, keep an eye out for the San Jose Sharks. They are currently only one point behind Arizona for the final playoff spot in the West, and as another team that many wrote off as a rebuilder, there is nothing more they want than to reach the postseason with the roster of players they assembled to b a Stanley cup caliber team.

NHL Top 10 Rankings – Week 11:

1. Colorado Avalanche (Last Week: 1)

Colorado proved this week that they can not only outscore teams with quick goals and lots of them, but they can also grind you out and make your life hard defensively.

The Avs kicked off their week by throttling the Coyotes 9-3, then faced off against the Blues in a back-to-back set and won two, low-scoring hockey games, one of which had their third-string goaltender between the pipes.

Expect this team to really hit their stride in the coming weeks as they prepare for the playoffs and hopefully, get healthier. The only real competition to them in this division is the Golden Knights, and they are currently not in great form.

2. Tampa Bay Lightning (Last Week: 2)

I am just going to completely ignore what happened on Sunday to write this up, because after Tampa got lit up by the lowly Red Wings on home-ice, 5-1, I think it’s safe to say they have a backup goaltending problem.

Other than that, the Bolts have looked steady. A team that has played a whole lot of hockey over the last 9 months is really just going through a ‘bored-phase’ and that would most likely be why they aren’t completely dominating every night.

They will want to ramp up the intensity son though, with Florida and Carolina really threatening to take home-ice away from them in the postseason.

3. Carolina Hurricanes (Last Week: 4)

One of the more entertaining teams to watch is the Hurricanes and their run and gun style of play that is really built for the regular season. Players like Sebastian Aho and youngster Martin Nécas have made this Carolina team one that can score with the best in the league.

For them, success will be determined in the playoffs where the games get tighter and there isn’t much of a need for fast-paced, high-risk scoring.

4. Vegas Golden Knights (Last Week: 3)

The Knights are in a slump right now due to their inability to capitalize on scoring chances. Similar to what we saw in the bubble with Thatcher Demko shutting them out in back-to-back games, the VGK seems to be cursed when it comes to finishing opportunities.

Once they get back to scoring at the rate they’re used to, the Knights will be pressing Colorado for the top spot in the west and I completely expect them to perhaps make a splash in the trade market.

5. New York Islanders (Last Week: 6)

The Isles are living life without their captain Anders Lee and this week they began to adjust to what works without that massive piece of their lineup.

British Columbia product Mat Barzal lit it up scoring a hattrick against fellow divisional powerhouse Washington and followed it up by scoring the shootout winner the following night in a win over Philly.

6. Toronto Maple Leafs  (Last Week: 7)

The Leafs make a two-spot jump with the high-quality goaltending they have found in the dirt with Jack Campbell. Campbell was acquired at last year’s trade deadline for some stability in the backup spot but has since found himself overtaking the starter’s job for the best hockey team in Canada.

7. Florida Panthers (Last Week: Unranked)

Florida is back where they belong, in the rankings. Although it may be hard to believe that this team can make any noise come playoff time, you can’t deny how well they have been playing to this point.

Sitting at number one in the NHL overall standings, the Panthers are playing like those classic Joe Quenneville Blackhawks teams that found so much success in the playoffs. Without their captain Aaron Ekblad, Mackenzie Weegar has taken a huge step in his new expanded role.

8. Washington Capitals (Last Week: 5)

Dropping three spots in my week 11 rankings, the Caps are still on cruise control to the postseason and remain steady in how they play. Despite a blowout loss at the hands of NYI, the Caps bounced back. by taking two straight against the Devils on the road and remaining perfect against New Jersey all year.

9. Pittsburgh Penguins  (Last Week: 8)

The Pens are still chugging along without Geno Malkin, and not only are they staying above water but they are discovering the potential this experienced roster still has.

Jake Guentzel and Sidney Crosby are playing great on the top line and powerplay, as well as depth players like Zach Aston-Reese and Jared McCann also stepping up.

10. Boston Bruins (Last Week: 10)

Boston is the one team in the league where they don’t usually lose to the same team twice unless it’s the Islanders.

The Bruins splits two-game sets with the Devils and Pens this week, showing their resiliency and coming back from deficits in both matches.

Evan Power, Evolution 107.9

The Greatest Sports Moments of the COVID-19 Era

Over the course of the last 13 months, the world has been put through the wringer and tested on every possible level. Through resilience, pride and perseverance, we have made steps to move forward.

Just like in the real world, the sports world has taken punch after punch throughout the time in this new normal.

Yet, with every single punch, every time we were told it wasn’t possible, and that things could never go back to the way they once were, we found a way.

This pandemic has taught everybody new things about the power of resilience, and how important it is to find the best possible light in every dark situation. In the world of sports, barriers were broken over the last thirteen months that will help write the story of so many great books yet to be written.

COVID sports feels like its own category by now, with all of the things that have transpired and events that have taken place under these new, completely unforeseen circumstances, it is now its very own genre.

COVID sports.

It started with actually no sports at all. In March of 2020, we saw every single pro and amateur sports league or association completely shut down all operations. Things went quiet for a bit until we found the information we needed and took the step out of the quarantine phase.

That was a difficult few steps to take. Things were just getting good, into the final stages of seasons and playoffs were approaching. The leagues and athletes worldwide were collecting cheques and the finances of sports were at an all-time high with no end in sight.

And one day it just all came crashing down.

As we went through the few months without any sports at all, we were then introduced to bubbles. Leagues like the NBA, NHL and MLS set the tone for how things would be run, at least for the time being.

Bubbles went well, it was fun for the short time as people readjusted to the dreaded new normal.

The NFL brought things to new heights once their season came around, proving that even in a full-contact game with a percentage of masked-up fans in their stadiums, the show could on safely and soundly.

Now, in April of 2021, regardless of anybody’s thoughts and how controversial they may be, the UFC is ready to host a soldout event in Florida later this month with every seat in the house already sold and secured.

Top Sports Moments in the COVID-19 Era –

There are moments in sports that you will always endear and remember from how crazy the roar of the crowds were, or how clutch that play was when there were 25,000 fans off their seats in a packed stadium.

In COVID sports, we will basically remember them for the opposite. Looking at last night’s game between Gonzaga and UCLA, I could not imagine what that moment would look like if Lucas Oil Stadium in Indy was full. The emotions of the players were in extra focus because even without the massive crowds, they created a memory that lasts forever.

Titles have been won and celebrated, huge performances, accolades and milestones have been reached for so many athletes across the globe, but no one was there to be able to help these celebrations.

LeBron James and the Lakers win the NBA Championship:

Alone with the Tampa Bay Lightning of the NHL, they are the proclaimed ‘bubble champions’ of COVID sports.

Known for how dominant and locked in they were within the confines of the bubble, the Lakers made themselves at home during their 2020 championship run. Led by LeBron James and Anthony Davis, Los Angeles took down Portland, Houston, Denver and Miami with a total record of 16-6 in the playoffs, and captured the illustrious franchise’s 17th NBA title.

There we various great moments from the NBA bubble that were much needed in a time where happiness and fulfillment weren’t easy to come by; this may have been the best.

The sight of one of the greatest NBA players and athletes of all time, just sitting on the floor he just won his fourth NBA ring on, looking as if he had just finished a 12-hour shift on the job site.

SuperBowl LV – Brady Regains the Throne:

Super Bowl 55 marked the end of an NFL season that was not only one massive masterpiece in terms of COVID sports but was a barrier-breaker for every other sports league around the world.

They laid out the format before any other league did on how to approach a day-by-day, week-by-week schedule and work around the obstacles the pandemic brought.

In the Super Bowl, with over 10,000 frontline health care workers in attendance for free, the NFL brought together an atmosphere for the ages and the Super Bowl was an outgoing success.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were a team of destiny, who managed to make everything click when they needed it most. Under the guidance and experience of Tom Brady, Tampa Bay won their second major sports championship in the era of COVID sports.

Sarah Fuller Makes History:

Over a crazy, up-and-down college football season, there was a bright spot with all of the COVID troubles. A college soccer player named Sarah Fuller stepped in and became the first female to play in a game featuring a Power Five conference when she handled the second-half kickoff against Missouri on Nov. 28.

She then became the first woman to score points in such a game when she converted two extra points versus Tennessee on Dec. 12.

Jalen Suggs Calls Game:

It had to be in here, because I’m still buzzing from it.

Rewatching this shot and the play before it by Johnny Juzang is like poetry in motion. The highs and the lows of basketball could not have come anymore into the spotlight during the final ten seconds of overtime.

With Gonzaga’s perfect season on the line, Jalen Suggs stepped up and hit the shot heard everywhere if you’re a basketball fan, and it will for sure go down as one of the greatest memories of the COVID sports era.

Evan Power, Evolution 107.9