It’s playoff season, and I have Spring fever.

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The sun is out, the grass is green, and the birds are chirping – oh wait, and its playoff season, what a time to be alive.

Time to spring into action, sports fans, because this is interesting month for hockey as well as basketball. With the NHL postseason set to start in yet just in a week or two, NBA teams are also fighting for their playoff lives.

With only one spot left in the western conference, looks like it is going down to a coin-flip with either the Arizona Coyotes or the Colorado Avalanche. The Coyotes need more help than the Avalanche; seeking a miracle through a win-out situation with their foe losing out as well.

It is something to be said that these two teams are still in the playoff race, with the course of several injuries to key players this season. Wonder what will happen these next two games.

Teams that have already made the playoffs, have intriguing first round match ups. The Las Vegas Golden Knights-San Jose Sharks series will be a dandy, as well as the Boston Bruins-Toronto Leafs matchup.

The Eastern conference has a bit more parody, with four teams looking on the outside in: The Pittsburgh Penguins, Carolina Hurricanes, Columbus Blue Jackets, and Montreal Canadians.

With just three spots remaining, which team will be left out? My prediction that the team will be left out of the playoff race will be Columbus, as far as the east goes.

There are so many talented teams this year in the NHL, it will be hard to say in my mind that the NBA could have the same parody.

Photo by Alvesgaspar [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

2018 Stanley Cup Finals: From tragedy to triumph, a Las Vegas Story 

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The Golden Knights’ journey to the Stanley Cup Finals will be known as one the top Cinderella stories in all of sports, standing just four wins away from squashing the virtually impossible, 500-1 odds to win it all.

The Golden Knights have been fighting odds all season long, even before they stepped on the ice. Vegas’ first season with professional hockey was expected to be anything, but successful, for they were predicted to
be one of the worst the teams in the league.

Look at them now – the Golden Knights are in the Stanley Cup Finals.

The Golden Knights’ incredible path to the Finals is something that has truly inspired Vegas. The aftershock of the Las Vegas music festival shooting last year was felt throughout the entire nation, giving the home town not much to hope for, until now.

Vegas’ unexpected success in the NHL, being a real underdog, really helped cast away some of the gloom after the catastrophe. The city of bright lights, is certainly shining bright again, but now is flashing “Stanley Cup Born.”

Their first playoff win at T-Mobile Arena looked like a scene out of a movie, seeing thousands of white towels being waved in unison and signs saying “Vegas Strong.” It was a powerful message that was felt throughout
the entire arena and the city of Las Vegas.

The Stanley Cup Finals will also preview another new face, for the Washington Capitals, are also making their first appearance in the championship.

The Capitals’ leader of the team, Alex Ovechkin, is one of the premier players in the league and he certainly will be the priority for the Golden Knights. Ovechkin has been having an incredible season, but so have these Golden Knights.

Vegas, in their inaugural season, has been one of the best teams in the entire NHL playing like a true team. They have swept the Los Angeles Kings, defeated a tough San Jose Sharks team, and the Winnipeg Jets on their trip to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Winning twice as many games as expected, 51 wins, also is certainly something that must be celebrated for this new team. The 2018 Stanley Cup Finals will certainly be one to remember.

Photo by David_Vasquez [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

Ezekiel Elliot eligible to play, for the time being

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Ezekiel Elliot is fully dialed in after hearing news he’ll be able to return to the field for Dallas Cowboys’ game opener on Sunday against the New York Giants.

The Cowboys are also locked and loaded – now that they have Ezekiel Elliot at their arsenal, who is eligible to play in Week 1 according to Ian Rapport, via ESPN.

The Rookie of the Year candidate had been training all summer camp long as if he was eligible to play every game, according to sources. He is already focused, and ready for the Dallas – Giants rivalry this weekend.

While the ruling for Elliot’s six-game suspension is still in limbo, he is keeping football solely on my mind.

The Cowboys and their star running back, both had the mindset on playing Week 1; Head Coach Jason Garrett and staff did a great job of keeping Elliot, as well as the team, away from distractions. Especially when the Cowboys are completely surrounded by distractions everyday with the label, “America’s Team”.

From the perspective of a Cowboys’ fan, and having Elliot on my fantasy team, Cowboys Nation is getting a huge boost this Sunday. You can imagine the confidence added to their locker room, “Ezek the Beast” is back, so let’s roll.

In a game that is decided by a touchdown or less years after years, especially in a rivalry game like this, Elliot will help the Cowboys chances of winning tremendously. It’s definitely something to get excited about, if you’re a Cowboys fan or a fantasy owner at least.

Ezekiel Elliot back in the lineup for the Cowboys is huge, but doesn’t necessarily mean this rivalry game will be any less than unpredictable.

Photo by Keith Allison from Hanover, MD, USA (Ezekiel Elliott, Dak Prescott) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons