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Joe Nelson - Blogs

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WHIRLWIND WEEKEND

By Joe Nelson
Posted 03/31/2008 at 11:31 AM

What a great sports weekend! NCAA tournament action concluded with all four #1 seeds advancing to the Final Four for the first time ever. Unfortunately we did not get to see competitive games in the elite eight as North Carolina, UCLA, and Memphis all won by convincing margins but the Kansas/Davidson game was a close through the final possession. Stephen Curry was the star of the tournament but he could not come up with the big shots late in the game as Kansas played excellent defense. Both teams played very tight and made uncharacteristic mistakes but both were feeling the pressure of what was at stake. If you had all four teams correctly picked in your bracket, we are not impressed, but you played it well. As a handicapper it can be easy to get to locked in on seeking out upsets and trying to be a hero by beating a great team but in reality that can often be the wrong way to go. Sometimes just choosing the best teams works out well, as it did this year.

A great opening day baseball schedule is on tap for Monday and the Nationals and Braves gave us a great game to start the year. Play was sloppy early on with a couple of errors and it looked for a moment like the Nationals had spoiled their stadium debut with a passed ball allowing the tying run. Rising star Ryan Zimmerman gave the Nats a glorious win with a walk-off home run however for an incredible finish.

Most of you probably are not interested but college hockey presented a very exciting day on Sunday as both regional finals went to sudden death overtime. Boston College and North Dakota return to the Frozen Four in two weeks. For my money, sudden death in hockey is some of the most exciting viewing action in sports. Hockey does not translate as well to the television screen but the build-up and intensity is hard to match. A tough break for my local team Wisconsin, as the Badgers dominated the first two periods with numerous scoring chances. The 2-0 lead was not enough as North Dakota tied the game with two third period goals in less than a minute span, and eventually nailed the game winner in overtime. That is the exciting part about hockey, the team that dominates the game does not always win as a couple of breaks or a short-spurt of great play can be the difference.

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