LAFC wins the West, advances to MLS Cup again
LAFC defeated Houston Dynamo, 2-0, to advance to the MLS Cup and become back-to-back MLS Western Conference champions.
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1. LAFC wins the West, advances to MLS Cup again
LAFC defeated Houston Dynamo, 2-0, to advance to the MLS Cup and become back-to-back MLS Western Conference champions, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Anthony Bautista.
LAFC is headed back to the MLS Cup Final after a 2-0 win over the Houston Dynamo in the Western Conference Final. LAFC will head to Ohio to face the Columbus Crew in the MLS Cup on Dec. 9.
Entering the match, most eyes were on the captains, former teammates with the Mexican National Team, Carlos Vela and Houston’s Hector Herrera, but their teammates stole the show.
“Very proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish over the last two years, I’m very proud of the players who have been mentally through a lot this year,” LAFC head coach Steve Cherundolo said afterwards. “A lot of ups and downs on and off the pitch and the effort they give in training the focus they give… this is a special, special group and I thank them for that every day and tonight they were able to reward themselves.”
2. Nacua breaks rookie receiving record as Rams beat Browns, 36-19
The Rams are .500 and in the playoff picture after winning their third consecutive game, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Lauren Jones.
With Sunday’s 36-19 win over the Cleveland Browns, the Los Angeles Rams have won three consecutive games since the bye week. It is the first time since 2021 when they were crowned Super Bowl champions that they won three straight games. The Rams also improved to .500 on the season with a record of 6-6. The Rams are seventh in the NFC and hold the final wild card spot. Click below for the key takeaways from Sunday’s win:
3. Chargers win ugly behind special teams in 6-0 victory over Patriots
Years ago special teams were a problem for the Chargers. On Sunday, they were the solution, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Fernando Ramirez.
The definition of “ugly win” was what the Los Angeles Chargers did in New England after winning 6-0. Yes, they scored two field goals, and that was enough.
Usually, when they come away with a victory, the first thought that jumps out is that quarterback Justin Herbert had a big game. He didn’t get sacked and took care of the football, but it wasn’t on his arm, but special teams.
Yes, the same special teams that were a mess from when the Chargers first got to Los Angeles in 2017 until 2021.
Brandon Staley came in and wanted to improve the special teams unit. It took a positive step with Derius Swinton, but he was let go after one season.
4. Present and future on display for Kings in 4-1 win over the Avalanche
Quinton Byfield’s two-goal effort lead the Kings to victory over Colorado, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Kamran Nia.
The present and the future were on display at Crypto.com Arena on Sunday. Quinton Byfield arrived, while Anze Kopitar broke another record as the Los Angeles Kings won 4-1 over the Colorado Avalanche.
Byfield has broken out in 2023-24. The 21-year-old is finally contributing to the team with points despite flashes of talent in previous seasons. He showed such skill with a two-goal effort versus the Avalanche.
Byfield surpassed his career-high season goal total of five goals, which he set in 40 games during the 2021-22 season. In 2023-24, it only took him 21 games to surpass it.
While the Avalanche got on the board first, scoring in the first period, the Kings tied the game 9:03 minutes into the second period when Byfield tipped Mikey Anderson’s shot into the goal.
5. Ducks beat Avalanche in shootout, break losing streak
The Ducks snapped an eight-game losing streak, besting the Avalanche in the shootout thanks to Leo Carlsson, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Derek Lee.
Like two sprinters in the prime of their careers, Saturday night’s matchup between the Ducks and the Avalanche felt like the track meet of a lifetime at times. Before the game, Ducks head coach Greg Cronin had highlighted the Avalanche’s speed and emphasized keeping turnovers and penalties down against such a quick team.
It was a quick start out of the gate for sure for the Avs, who scored just 36 seconds into the game. Colorado hit Anaheim with speed off the rush and Bo Byram came in as the trailer on an odd-man rush to beat John Gibson five-hole. Byram would get his second goal of the eight minutes later on another odd-man rush, beating Gibson with a shot off the far-side post.
Despite the score after one, Cronin said that he loved the way his team played in the first period. “We put a lot of pressure on them we were getting pucks back, we were creating shots. We just got a little bit sloppy on our coverage. We got our third forward caught deep and that was really the only issue I thought we had (in that period).”
6. UNLV unable to come up big in its biggest game
The Rebels' first appearance in the Mountain West title game was a struggle on both sides of the ball in a blowout loss to Boise State, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Steve Carp.
All week, Barry Odom talked about his UNLV football team playing with a chip on its shoulder.
Funny, but Spencer Danielson must’ve been saying the same thing about his Boise State Broncos. Because it sure looked like Boise State carried the bigger chip as it came into Allegiant Stadium Saturday for what was essentially a UNLV home game and won the Mountain West championship.
The Broncos built a 31-14 second-quarter lead and never looked back, finishing up 44-20 winners and getting to represent the MW in the L.A. Bowl on Dec. 16. I’d like to think by then, school officials will have taken that interim tag off Danielson and made him the permanent head coach. He certainly has earned that opportunity as the Broncos have now won three straight since he replaced Andy Avalos on Nov. 12.
7. Odds and Ends presented by Circa Sports
Here are some odds at Circa Sports if you’re thinking about placing a wager today:
8. Ticket Time presented by Golden Gate
Here are the “get in” prices for tickets if you’re thinking about going to a game today:
7:00 p.m. – Blues at Golden Knights – ESPN+ - $46
9. On the Air presented by The D Las Vegas
Here are the game times and television channels for professional teams in the region today:
7:00 p.m. – Blues at Golden Knights – ESPN+
10. The Arash Markazi Show presented by The Sporting Tribune
Listen to The Arash Markazi Show presented by The Sporting Tribune on The Mightier 1090 ESPN Radio in Southern California, 98.5 The Bet in Las Vegas and the Hawaii Sports Radio Network 95.1 FM and 760 AM in Hawaii. You can also listen to the show on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Play and Stitcher. You can also watch every Friday on BLEAV on FuboTV.
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That’s it for today. Talk to you tomorrow!