Rams clinch playoff berth
With Seahawks loss to the Steelers, the Rams clinch a playoff spot after close win in New Jersey.
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1. Rams inch past Giants en route to a playoff berth, 26-25
With Seahawks loss to the Steelers, the Rams clinch a playoff spot after close win in New Jersey, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Grant Mona.
The Los Angeles Rams have clinched a playoff berth. With a closer than expected victory against a scrappy Giants in a cold New Jersey, the Rams positioned themselves to secure a playoff spot. Then, a few hours after the game, the team gathered in the airport before taking off to see the Steelers defeat the Seahawks and lock in the Rams playoff berth before take-off.
Kyren Williams led the way with 3 touchdowns and 87 yards, while Puka Nacua went off for 5 receptions and 118 yards. Even though Matthew Stafford threw 2 interceptions and the defense didn’t have their best effort, the Rams found a way to get a victory. The Rams are now 9-7 and the 6th seed in the NFC.
2. Lakers fall to .500 at year’s end after loss to Pelicans
The Lakers gave up 42 points in the first quarter and couldn’t come from behind to avoid a loss to the Pelicans on Sunday night, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Brandon Deutsch.
Despite their championship aspirations, the Los Angeles Lakers have looked like anything but a championship contender over the last week and a half.
Following their brutal loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves the previous night (where LeBron James’ foot was on the line to prevent the game from going to overtime) the Lakers came out exhausted and lackadaisical on a second night of a back-to-back vs. the New Orleans Pelicans.
Though James and Anthony Davis played great yet again, Lakers role players simply didn’t step up enough on offense to get them back in the game. Taurean Prince was one of the lone bright spots continuing his sharpshooting from 3, but the Lakers were exhausted from their previous game against the Wolves and simply couldn’t defend on Sunday night.
3. Ducks roll over against Oilers in final game of 2023
The Anaheim Ducks fell 7-2 in a lopsided result against the Edmonton Oilers in their last game of 2023, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Derek Lee.
If there’s any team in the NHL that can’t wait for 2024, it has to be the Anaheim Ducks. After concluding their 2022-23 season with the worst record in franchise history, the team failed to win the NHL Draft Lottery, falling to second overall and missing out on Connor Bedard.
Leo Carlsson, whom Anaheim selected with their first pick, has been more than a consolation prize. Carlsson scored his first NHL goal in his NHL debut and picked up his first NHL hat trick as well just eight games later. However, the big Swede––who just recently turned 19––is currently on the shelf with a sprained MCL, with his recovery time expected to be four to six weeks.
The Ducks have had their fair share of injuries this season, with Mason McTavish, Jamie Drysdale, Trevor Zegras and Alex Killorn all out of the lineup at one point or another due to long-term injuries. This has made it difficult for newly-named head coach Greg Cronin to ice his optimal lineup.
4. Chargers fall to 5-11 after loss to Denver, one game left in forgettable season
There is only one game left in the Chargers underwhelming season, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Fernando Ramirez.
It is all about getting to the finish line for this Chargers team. They showed promise all season, but the sails have fallen off, and now it is about showing fight but getting the highest pick possible for the draft next year.
That is what they did on Sunday in their 16-9 loss to their division rival Denver Broncos.
In what is a forgettable year because of their underperforming, the firing of the head coach/general manager, and the injuries, they are just one game from the season-ending.
5. Raiders lose 23-20 in Indy, eliminated from playoff race
The Raiders will miss the playoffs for the 19th time in 21 seasons, writes The Sporting Tribune’s W.G. Ramirez.
Some may say the Indianapolis Colts were a bit hungrier Sunday, in their quest to stay alive in the AFC Playoff race. That’s certainly not to take away from what the Las Vegas Raiders continue to accomplish under interim coach Antonio Pierce.
With their 23-20 loss in Indianapolis, the Raiders (7-9) had their mini two-game winning streak brought. They will miss the playoffs for the second straight season and 19th time in 21 years.
They now have gone 21 seasons without winning a division title, tied for the second-longest skid in the NFL.
6. Angel City’s 2023 in review
The Sporting Tribune’s Kamran Nia looks back at Angel City’s most pivotal moments from the 2023 season.
Angel City’s 2023 season was like a rollercoaster. They went through a tough start, a coaching change, and a climb from near the bottom of the table to the playoffs. Through each step, their players made brilliant plays (whether they were happening frequently or not.
Each step proved to be vital as Angel City made it into the playoffs on the number. They would have missed the playoffs if they finished with just one fewer point. But thanks to some heroics throughout the year, they made it in on Decision Day.
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:
2:00 p.m. – Rose Bowl – $900
5:00 p.m. – WWE Raw (San Diego) – $85
7:30 p.m. – Heat at Clippers – $61
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:
12:00 p.m. – Golden Knights at Kraken – TNT
2:00 p.m. – Rose Bowl – ESPN
5:00 p.m. – WWE Raw (San Diego) – USA
7:30 p.m. – Heat at Clippers – Bally Sports SoCal
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!