Rams improve playoff chances with 30-22 win over the Saints
The Rams have won five of their last six games after winning their last home game of the season, 30-22, over the New Orleans Saints.
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1. Rams improve playoff chances with 30-22 win over the Saints
The Rams have won five of their last six games after winning their last home game of the season, 30-22, over the New Orleans Saints, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Lauren Jones.
Short week, no problem.
In the Rams’ final home game of the regular season, Los Angeles came away with a pivotal win against the visiting New Orleans Saints, 30-22. This was a game with a lot on the line for both teams who entered the matchup in the hunt for a playoff spot.
In just the seventh time this season, the Rams had their triple threat on the field in wide receivers Cooper Kupp and Puka Nacua, and running back Kyren Williams. Nacua and Williams both had record setting performances on the night.
2. Dodgers sign Japanese star Yamamoto to 12-year $325M deal
The Dodgers sign the best pitcher on the free agent market with the biggest deal for a pitcher in MLB history, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Grant Mona.
After weeks of speculation and bidding wars, the Dodgers have landed the best pitcher on the free agent market to a 12 year, $325 million contract. I know what you are thinking: “Is it deferred?” The answer is no, and rightfully so when you are getting the top arm on the market.
Yoshinobu Yamamoto is now a Los Angeles Dodger and has teamed up with his former World Baseball Classic teammate Shohei Ohtani. $1.1 billion have now been committed in some fashion towards those two players, and the Dodgers now have the two best players on the free agent market on the same team. This move has changed the landscape of the league and further proven that the Dodgers took all of the talk and criticism to heart.
After the disappointing loss in the 2023 NLDS, the Dodgers had a lot to think about. Would they move on from Dave Roberts? Would they make major changes to the roster? Would anybody be held accountable? Well, it seems the answer was to nab the top two players in the free agent market.
Yamamoto brings a high 90’s fastball that does reach up in the triple digits, a wipeout splitter that disappears over the plate, and a looping curveball that locks opposing hitters up. Furthermore, Yamamoto is only 25 years old, and in the prime of his career, something you usually do not see from a talent this huge coming out of Japan. He is also the 3 time reigning champion of the Sawamura Award, which is the Japanese equivalent to a Cy Young award, so he has proven not to be a flash in the pan, but rather a budding superstar in baseball.
3. The Thompson sisters: The next great sibling duo
The Thompson sisters will step on the field together in 2024 for Angel City FC, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Kamran Nia.
Serena and Venus Williams. Nneka and Chiney Ogumike. Sam and Kristie Mewis. American sports have had numerous siblings grace the fields of their respective games. They have left behind (or are currently leaving) legacies that few players will match. But there are sisters in Southern California who may be up to the task: Alyssa and Gisele Thompson.
Alyssa Thompson took the soccer world by storm in her rookie season. At 18 years old, her speed and skill were difficult to defend. Thompson regularly made runs behind the opponent’s back lines using her quick speed. She drew attention in matches, creating space for her teammates.
In Alyssa’s NWSL debut, she scored a goal from outside of the box after using a fake to create space. The goal was one of four she scored during her rookie season, often displaying remarkable skill.
4. Ducks blanked by Flames, Carlsson suffers injury
The Ducks' two-game winning streak was snapped by the Calgary Flames, with Leo Carlsson leaving the game late due to a lower-body injury, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Derek Lee.
Kicking off an eight-game homestand that extends through the rest of 2023, the Ducks were unable to extend their two-game winning streak as they fell 2-0 to the Calgary Flames on Thursday night.
Lukáš Dostál was sharp, stopping 41 of 43 shots. The 23-year-old has strung together a couple of good starts after a tough stretch that began at the end of November. Dostál was making his third consecutive appearance after a relief appearance for a dehydrated John Gibson on Sunday night and then a start on Monday night. Gibson––whose wife, Alexa, gave birth to their third child yesterday––was available as the backup goaltender for Thursday’s game.
Jamie Drysdale and Mason McTavish both returned to the lineup after extended absences. Drysdale had been out since Oct. 16––the day after the Ducks’ second game of the season––while McTavish had been out since Dec. 2, when he suffered an upper-body injury against the Colorado Avalanche.
5. Second period dooms Knights again in loss to Lightning
The Golden Knights can’t survive a second straight second period collapse, fall 5-4 to Lightning in Tampa, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Will Despart.
The score may have been different from Tuesday night’s disaster against the Hurricanes in Raleigh, but the story in Tampa on Thursday was all the same. For the second straight outing, the Knights rolled over in the second period.
On Tuesday it was a symptom of an awful night in general. On Thursday, it was an isolated collapse that completely negated winning efforts in the other two periods. Regardless, they’ve been beaten down by an aggregate score of 7-0 in their last two middle stanzas.
6. Clippers win streak snapped at hands of Thunder, 134-115
Oklahoma City had a highlight night as Clippers suffer first loss of December, writes The Sporting Tribune’s Marisa Flores.
Kawhi Leonard had yet to miss a game before Thursday, but a left hip contusion late in Wednesday’s game against Dallas ruled him out in Oklahoma City.
At the same time, the Clippers saw their undefeated month come to an end without Leonard.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander led Oklahoma City with 31 points to lift the Thunder past his former team, 134-115.
“They did a good job of just attacking us," Clippers coach Tyronn Lue said. "We couldn’t get back, we couldn’t get set, we couldn’t get matched, and they took advantage of that early.”
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 Saturday:
12:30 p.m. – Celtics at Clippers – $71
5:00 p.m. – Bills at Chargers – $36
5:00 p.m. – Kraken at Ducks – $33
7:00 p.m. – Flames at Kings – $71
9. On the Air presented by The D Las Vegas
Here are the game times and television channels for professional teams in the region Saturday:
12:00 p.m. – Golden Knights at Panthers – ESPN+
12:30 p.m. – Celtics at Clippers – NBA TV
5:00 p.m. – Bills at Chargers – NBC Peacock
5:00 p.m. – Lakers at Thunder – Spectrum SportsNet
5:00 p.m. – Kraken at Ducks – Bally Sports SoCal
7:00 p.m. – Flames at Kings – Bally Sports West
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 on Monday!