SAN ANTONIO — The incredible four-year run to the NBA Finals by the Miami Heat came to an end Sunday in San Antonio 104-87 in game five. The Spurs are the 2014 champions of basketball after dissecting the Heat in five games. Last year, the same two teams met in the NBA Finals with the Heat prevailing in seven games.
You might recall in game six of last year’s Finals, with the Spurs leading the Heat three games to two, the Heat rallied from five points down with 28 seconds left to force overtime. Miami not only won in overtime; they captured game seven 92-90. Continue Reading →
Monday’s Minnesota Lynx championship celebration looked more like a bon voyage send-off, especially given that every player soon will leave for off-season overseas jobs. “It’s awesome having our fans out here and be able to say good-bye to them,” said Lynx guard Monica Wright, who heads to South Korea by month’s end.
Added Israel-bound rookie Sugar Rodgers of her first overseas assignment, “I’m going down to take care of a little business, to see my family before I head out.”
“It’s a long off season, and I will miss this group,” noted Maya Moore, who will play again in China. Mounds of confetti became a temporary asphalt blanket on Monday as the procession that carried the 2013 WNBA Champions Lynx moved slowly along Nicollet Avenue, with adoring fans providing escort as they made their way to their downtown Minneapolis basketball home. There, inside, a large crowd impatiently awaited the arrival of the only local pro team that boasts a championship trophy these days. Continue Reading →
By Charles Hallman
The 2013 WNBA Playoffs begin this week: Washington-Atlanta and Indiana-Chicago in the East, and Minnesota-Seattle and Los Angeles-Phoenix in the West in the four best-of-three first-round matchups.
“When we get into the playoffs, it’s our own destiny,” notes Indiana guard Shavonte Zellous, a member of the 2012 defending champions. The Fever, the only sub-.500 club among the eight playoff teams, has been injury-riddled all season. “We’ve gotten some good wins and some tough losses as well,” explains forward Tamika Catchings. “I think we’ve gotten better from the beginning of the season to now.”
“We are going to make a good run,” predicts Zellous. Continue Reading →
CHICAGO — On a spectacular sun-splashed Sunday in my hometown of Chicago at historic Soldier Field, the Vikings had their bubble of expectation busted by the monsters of the Midway, the Chicago Bears — Bears 28, Vikings 10. It was more like a mauling. Clearly, for whatever reason, the Vikings were not ready Sunday. Jay Cutler returned to the starting lineup at quarterback for the Bears after battling concussion symptoms, and maybe that was enough to inspire the Bears, who had lost back-to-back prime time contests to 10-1 Houston (13-6, the game in which Cutler suffered a concussion) and to 8-2-1 San Francisco, who beat the Bears up 32-7 on Monday Night Football. The Vikings were just what the Bears needed, a team half-stepping along but not totally committed to getting the job done. Continue Reading →