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NBA Power Rankings Week 9
The Warriors continue to prove they have the Celtics number, the Lakers and Clippers have trouble winning, and Zion Williamson and the Pelicans could go all the way.
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1. NBA Power Rankings Week 9
The Warriors continue to prove they have the Celtics number, the Lakers and Clippers have trouble winning, and Zion Williamson and the Pelicans could go all the way. Where does your team rank? The Sporting Tribune’s Brandon Deutsch has you covered in this week’s NBA Power Rankings.
The Lakers went 3-3 on their road trip with impressive wins against the Bucks and Wizards, but gut-wrenching losses to the 76ers (in overtime) and Cavaliers. The Lakers have a tough time closing out games as evident in the embarrassing loss in overtime to the 76ers (when they had the game won) and the numerous occasions already this season where they have blown a late lead (most notably to the Blazers and Pacers). Anthony Davis (27.7 points, 12.4 rebounds, and 2.7 blocks per game with a TS% of 66.5) continues to be an MVP candidate and the heart and soul of this Lakers team. Without him, the team would have just 2-3 wins on the season.
2. Golden Knights suffering power outage at home
With an 8-7 record at T-Mobile Arena, the Vegas Golden Knights are last in the NHL when it comes to scoring at home. The Sporting Tribune’s Steve Carp dives into why one of the best teams in the league are the worst when it comes to scoring at home.
For the Vegas Golden Knights, home has been a house of horrors. Maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but the fact remains Bruce Cassidy’s team is barely playing .500 hockey in the place they lovingly call “The Fortress.” Sunday’s 3-1 loss to Boston at T-Mobile Arena where Vegas couldn’t hold a 1-0 first-period lead is symptomatic of its problems on home ice this year. This team struggles to put the puck in the net. "Cellys" are in short supply these days.
3. Would Dansby Swanson be a good fit for the Dodgers?
The Dodgers may be kicking the tires on free agent shortstop Dansby Swanson. The Sporting Tribune’s Blake Harris has more on the Dodgers’ offseason plans.
The Dodgers are in need of a shortstop and they are reportedly interested in a good one. According to reports, the Dodgers have shown interest in free agent shortstop, Dansby Swanson, who spent the last seven seasons with the Braves. He picked quite the time to have a career-year, as he emerged as one of the top shortstops in the game in 2022. The 28-year-old finished 12th in MVP voting last season. He was named an All-Star for the first time and received his first Gold Glove Award. His 116 wRC+ was a career-high, along with his 95 RBI.
4. The Clippers will get tested now
The Sporting Tribune's Joey Linn breaks down the Clippers' disappointing road trip and their upcoming home stand that is about to truly test them for the first time all year. Click here to listen.
5. Evaluating the Ducks' 2022-23 first quarter performance
The 2022-23 season has not been kind to the Anaheim Ducks. The Sporting Tribune’s Derek Lee gives his evaluation of the team at the first quarter mark of the season.
Through 28 games, the Anaheim Ducks sit dead last not only in the Pacific Division but the entire league. Their 7-18-3 record and -50 goal differential include just one regulation win and pair of special teams units that are 31st (second-to-last) among all teams. They concede the highest amount of shots per game (37.5) league-wise by a significant margin and both of their goaltenders currently hold save percentages under .900. Their latest result was a 6-1 drubbing to the 27th-placed San Jose Sharks. There are some positives as well. Troy Terry and Trevor Zegras are on track to outpace their point totals from their breakout performances last season. Mason McTavish is perhaps in the midst of his own this year. Defenseman Cam Fowler, too, has quietly put together a solid offensive campaign. He’s on track to break his career-high in points for the second time in three seasons.
6. Freshman lead No. 19 UCLA to victory over Denver
UCLA freshman Will McClendon received extended minutes and used them well while Dylan Andrews led the way for No. 19 UCLA over Denver. The Sporting Tribune’s Kamran Nia has more from the Bruins’ win.
When Wil McClendon checked in after 2:15 minutes of play, No. 19 UCLA Bruins fans knew they would see extended looks of deep rotation players. The redshirt freshman McClendon immediately forced a turnover amid a 14-1 Bruins scoring run. The run would give them a 16-4 lead, one they would never lose, before beating the Denver Pioneers, 87-64. Still working back to form from an ACL injury, McClendon played 11 minutes, scoring three points. Even with deep rotation players checking in early, the Bruins were challenged in the first half. Despite forcing 12 turnovers, the Pioneers kept the game close by shooting 57.1% from the floor and 66.7% from beyond the arc.
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 TickPick
Here are the “get in” prices for tickets if you’re thinking about going to a game today:
9. On the Air presented by Pirnia Law
Here are the game times and television channels for professional teams in the region today:
4:00 p.m. – Anaheim Ducks at Toronto Maples Leafs – Bally Sports SoCal
4:00 p.m. – Los Angeles Kings at Buffalo Sabres – Bally Sports West
7:00 p.m. - Boston Celtics at Los Angeles Lakers - TNT
10. The Arash Markazi Show presented by The Sporting Tribune
Friday was the debut of Legends of Sport Friday with hall of fame photographer Andy Bernstain, who interviewed fellow hall of famers Bill Walton and Ralph Lawler.
Listen to The Arash Markazi Show presented by The Sporting Tribune on The Mightier 1090 ESPN Radio in Southern California, 98.5 The Fan 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.
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That’s it for today. Talk to you all tomorrow!