Monday, October 13, 2014

Buffalo Sabres vs. Anaheim Ducks:preview Pick-Odds-Prediction - 10/13/14

    Anaheim Ducks (1-1-0) at Buffalo Sabres (0-2-0)
    Date & Time: NHL Hockey: Monday, October 13, 2014 at 3:00 pm (First Niagara Center)
    The Line: The Line: Buffalo Sabres +145 / Anaheim Ducks -165 --- Over/Under: 5.5 See The Latest Odds
    Live On: MSG-Buffalo

Buffalo Sabres vs. Anaheim Ducks Pick-Odds-Prediction - 10/13/14: Mark's Free NHL Hockey Pick Against the Spread
Photo by: USA TODAY Sports

The Sabres look to pick up a home win against the Anaheim Ducks on Monday night.

The Anaheim Ducks stay on the road with a visit to the First Niagara Center to take the ice with the Buffalo Sabres.


A strong third period led the Anaheim Ducks to a 3-2 road win over the Red Wings on Saturday night. Detroit led 2-1 before the Ducks scored twice to escape with the win with the winner coming with just 24 ticks remaining in regulation. Ryan Getzlaf recorded the winner for his second tally of the game with Matt Beleskey scoring the other. Getzlaf's late goal made a winner of Frederik Andersen who recorded 27 saves to pick up the victory. Gustav Nyquist and Luke Glendening scored for the Red Wings with the loss going to Jimmy Howard who made 23 stops.


A third period collapse doomed the Buffalo Sabres to a 6-2 defeat versus the Blackhawks at the United Center on Saturday. Tyler Ennis and Zemgus Girgenson's each scored in the opening frame but the offense stalled the rest of the way. Jhonas Enroth saw plenty of rubber with all six goals allowed on 47 shots with four scored in the 3rd. The Blackhawks received goals from Duncan Keith, Andrew Shaw, Patrick Kane, Patrick Sharp, Marian Hossa and Dan Carcillo. That was plenty of support for Corey Crawford who picked up the win with 21 saves.


Buffalo has gone 5-2 versus the Ducks in the last seven home match ups with Anaheim while the home team is 8-3 in the past eleven overall. Right now I favor Anaheim but please check back Monday afternoon...

Source: http://sportschatplace.com/nhl-picks/2014/10/13/buffalo-sabres-vs-anaheim-ducks-pick-odds-prediction

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Portland Trail Blazers vs. Oklahoma City Thunder Live Schedule and game preview 2014

Schedule:

Time: 08:00 PM ET.
Date:21/January/2014
Competition:Portland trail blazers vs. oklahoma city thunder
Venue:Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Portland Trail Blazers vs. Oklahoma City Thunder game preview:

About the Thunder:


Oklahoma City comes into Portland on a hot streak, having won eight games in a row, including a 97-95 victory at Sacramento on Tuesday. The streak includes wins over two other top Western Conference teams, Golden State and San Antonio. ... Durant, who on Tuesday was named the Western Conference Player of the Month, entered Tuesday's games as the leading scorer in the NBA, 2.0 points ahead of New York's Carmelo Anthony. Durant led the league in scoring for three consecutive seasons before Anthony ended the run last season. ... Before Tuesday, Oklahoma City was No. 8 in the league in points per game at 104.1. Last season, they finished No. 3 at 105.7. ... Ibaka ranks No. 3 in blocks at 2.6. He led the league last season at 3.03. 

About the Blazers:

 Portland looks for its third win a row after its 11-game winning streak was ended in Phoenix last Wednesday. They have since beaten the Lakers and Indiana. ... Portland has not lost at the Moda Center since Nov. 5, when they fell to Houston. They've since won six home games in a row and are 7-1 at home. ... The Blazers rank No. 5 in the NBA in point differential at plus-5 as they are averaging 104.7 while giving up 99.7 points per game. Last season they finished No. 22 at minus-3.2. ... Aldridge ranks No. 2 among power forwards in scoring, one point behind Minnesota's Kevin Love. Lillard is No. 5 among point guards. ... Lillard had an eight-game streak of not missing a free throw end Sunday in Los Angeles, where he went 8 for 9 against the Lakers. He made all 10 of his free-throw attempts against Indiana on Monday and is No. 9 in the league at 90.7 percent. His backup, Mo Williams, who does not have enough attempts to be listed among the league leaders, is 11 for 11 at the line. 

Series history: 

The Thunder have won 10 of the last 12 matchups, including all four last season, and have a 110-102 all-time lead, which includes games played before the team moved from Seattle. Since becoming the Thunder, OKC has a 12-8 advantage. The Blazers have a 67-39 home advantage.

Injuries: For Portland, guard CJ McCollum (left foot break) is out. The Thunder report no injuries.

Source:http://www.oregonlive.com/blazers/index.ssf/2013/12/portland_trail_blazers_vs_oklahoma_city_thunder_ga_3.html

Watch Sacramento Kings vs New Orleans Pelicans Live schedule and Preview

Schedule:

Time: 08:00 PM ET.
Date:21/January/2014
Competition:Sacramento Kings vs New Orleans Pelicans
Venue:New Orleans Arena, New Orleans, Louisiana

                        

                   Sacramento Kings vs New Orleans Pelicans Preview:

The New Orleans Pelicans have finally picked up a win in 2014 after ending their long losing streak, but they still haven't won in front of their home fans since December.

Facing a Sacramento team that's in the midst of an arduous road trip might be just what they need to end that drought.

The Pelicans aim for their first home win in more than three weeks Tuesday night as they look for their ninth victory in the Kings' last 10 visits to New Orleans.

Led by Anthony Davis, who had 27 points, 10 rebounds, four blocks and four steals, the Pelicans ended their eight-game skid with a 95-92 victory at Memphis on Monday.

New Orleans (16-24) was down entering the final quarter, but Davis and Tyreke Evans combined for 17 of the Pelicans' 27 fourth-quarter points, helping the team raise its record to 3-19 when trailing after 36 minutes.

"It just feels good to get a win," coach Monty Williams said. "For me, it's all about (Sacramento) and the preparation has already started for that but I want our guys to enjoy it."

New Orleans hasn't won at home since beating Portland on Dec. 30, but the last time it won back-to-back games - Dec. 23 and 27 - it started with a 113-100 win at Sacramento.

To do that again, the Pelicans need to keep feeding Evans, the former Kings guard who signed with New Orleans during the offseason. Evans had season highs of 25 points and 12 assists when the teams met last month, and the Pelicans are 11-4 this season when he scores at least 15 points.

Davis has also been a force of late, carrying the team while Evans, Jrue Holiday, Jason Smith and Ryan Anderson have missed time with injuries. Davis has averaged 26.4 points and 11.8 rebounds in his last five games.

"Everybody contributed, all the way down to the 10th guy," Davis said following the win over Memphis. "That's what we're going to need while our guys are down (due to injury)."

The Kings (14-25) have dropped eight of nine in New Orleans and three of four on their current six-game trip after Sunday's 108-93 loss to Oklahoma City. Rudy Gay scored just six points before being ejected midway through the fourth quarter for arguing with an official.

"Rudy, obviously, I think he was frustrated with the way he was playing and he wound up getting thrown out of the game, which is unfortunate," coach Michael Malone said. "We'll bounce back, we'll work on some things, watch some film and we still have two games on this trip that we feel like we have a great chance to win."

Gay had averaged 23.0 points while Sacramento had gone 4-2 in its previous six games, but he had 11 points while missing 10 of 12 shots and six turnovers in the loss to the Pelicans last month.

The Kings are 8-3 when he scores 20 or more points, and winless in eight games where fails to reach that mark.

Source:http://www.nbcsports.com/basketball/nba/kings-pelicans-preview

Friday, January 17, 2014

Charlotte Bobcats vs. Orlando Magic:NBA Live Schedule 2014 and Preview

Live Schedule

Time:07:00 PM ET.
Date:17/January/2014
Competition:Charlotte Bobcats vs Orlando Magic
Venue :Amway Center, Orlando, Florida


Charlotte Bobcats vs. Orlando Magic Preview:

After failing to capitalize on one of their best chances to snap a lengthy losing streak, the Orlando Magic will try to end their woes when they face another struggling Southeast Division team.

The Charlotte Bobcats will seek to avoid their 10th loss in 12 games by sending the Magic to a 10th consecutive defeat Friday night.

Orlando (10-29) rallied to force overtime against visiting Chicago on Wednesday and had late leads in two of the three extra periods before suffering a 128-125 defeat. The Magic had a chance to take a lead in the final seconds of the third overtime, but Glen Davis' 3-point attempt was partially blocked.

Coach Jacque Vaughn, though, was not displeased by his team's effort after Orlando had lost its previous six games by an average of 19.5 points.

"You feel for the guys. You want them to get a victory underneath them, but we got better tonight," said Vaughn, whose team was coming off a five-game road trip.

Rookie Victor Oladipo finished with a career-high 35 points, Jameer Nelson had a season-best 31 and Tobias Harris contributed 22 with 16 rebounds.

"I'm more mad than exhausted right now," said Oladipo, who played a team-high 57 minutes. "But it's a short turnaround, so you have to have a short-term memory."

While Orlando is likely to remain without starting center Nikola Vucevic (concussion) leading scorer Arron Afflalo could return after missing the last three games with a strained foot.

"It's my intent to play, but I'm supposed to leave that up to the training staff," said Afflalo, averaging 20.8 points.

The Magic look to avoid their third double-digit losing streak in 13 months by beating the Bobcats (16-24) for the second time in as many tries this season. Orlando won 92-83 in Charlotte on Dec. 11 with seven players scoring in double figures, led by Davis and Nelson with 17 points apiece.

The Bobcats did win both of last season's visits to Orlando but enter this one having dropped seven of eight on the road.

They lost for the ninth time in 11 games overall Wednesday, 95-92 in Philadelphia on Thaddeus Young's 3-pointer with 3.2 seconds to go.

Al Jefferson and Kemba Walker delivered some more high-scoring performances but got little help from their teammates. Walker had a team-best 26 points and Jefferson scored 24, but no one else tallied more than 11.

Over the last three games, Walker has averaged 26.7 points while Jefferson has scored 26.3.

Walker averaged 28.8 points in last season's four meetings with Orlando but scored 10 on 4-of-18 shooting in last month's loss. Jefferson also was held to 10, and Gerald Henderson scored 12 on 3-of-14 shooting after averaging 25.0 points during Charlotte's three-game win streak in the series.

Henderson had eight points -- one off a season low -- and shot a season-worst 2 for 14 on Wednesday.

Harris, who missed last month's matchup with the Bobcats because of a sprained ankle, was one off a career high with 29 points in his last game against them -- a 114-108 road loss March 27.

Source:http://scores.espn.go.com/nba/preview?gameId=400489455





Watch Los Angeles Clippers vs. New York Knicks:NBA Live Stream Schedule and Preview Info


  Schedule:

Time:07:00 PM ET.
Date:17/January/2014
Competition::New York Knicks vs Los Angeles Clippers
Venue ::Madison Square Garden, New York, New York
HOME TV:MSG Or ESPN

Preview Info:

 The Los Angeles Clippers will face the New York Knicks Friday night at Madison Square Garden in New York in an NBA 2014 game that will live stream online free at 7:00 PM ET.

Los Angeles plays its first of seven straight road games Friday.The Clippers (27-13) have won four of five since Chris Paul separated his shoulder Jan. 3 and are on the verge of a five-game winning streak that would match their season high.


J.J. Redick scored a career-high 33 points and Blake Griffin added 23 as the Los Angeles rallied from a 17-point, fourth-quarter deficit to beat Dallas 129-127 on Wednesday to sweep its four-game homestand.


Matt Barnes had 25 points off the bench, and Jamal Crawford hit two free throws with 11 seconds remaining to give the Clippers the lead.


Though the Clippers have had success since their star point guard went down, they're hoping to be even better on their second seven-game trip of the season.


Los Angeles went 4-3 on the previous trip Dec. 4-14.


"We want to play better. We really do, even without Chris," coach Doc Rivers told the team's official website. "I thought we were very inconsistent in our play. And you have to be a consistent team on the road. That doesn't mean you're going to win, but I think you give yourself a (better) shot."


Each game during the trip will be against an Eastern Conference foe, including a date Saturday with an Indiana team that is 20-1 at home.


"We want to perform a lot better than we did that last road trip," Griffin said. "I thought it was pretty disappointing last time around, so it's going to be tough being on the road in the same situation without our point guard. But guys have to step up and I'm sure guys will."


Griffin and Redick scored 15 points apiece to help the Clippers beat the Knicks 93-80 on Nov. 27. They've won three straight in the series by an average of 13.3 points and will look to deal New York a third straight defeat after it fell 117-89 to the Pacers on Thursday.


Carmelo Anthony, who needed 23 shots to score 27 points in the last meeting with Los Angeles, finished with 28 to lead the Knicks (15-24).


"They're a good team, but I don't think they're 30 points better than our team," said coach Mike Woodson, whose team shot 40 percent from the field. "We were awful."


The Clippers signed Hedo Turkoglu for the rest of the season Thursday to add another option off the bench. He's expected to join Los Angeles for its road trip.


"He's another shooter," Rivers said. "Sometimes you don't bring a guy in because someone's not doing something. It's because he does something that our other guys do as well. He can space the floor. He's very skilled and we'd like to take advantage of that."


Turkoglu hasn't played since Feb. 4 with Orlando, battling a hand injury while also serving a 20-game suspension for using performance-enhancing drugs.

Source:http://www.kdramastars.com/articles/14387/20140117/los-angeles-clippers-vs-new-york-knicks-watch-listen-live.htm

Anaheim Ducks vs Chicago Blackhawks:NHL Live Schedule and Preview

Live Schedule:

TV/Radio: FSW, 830-AM
Time:08:00 PM ET.
Date:17/January/2014
Competition:Anaheim Ducks vs Chicago Blackhawks
Venue / Play at:United Center, Chicago, Illinois

Preview:

This one is must-see TV, with the NHL-leading Ducks (36-8-5) trying for their ninth consecutive victory and their 19th in their last 20 games. The Ducks are the first team to win 18 of 19 since the Montreal Canadiens won 20 of 21 en route to the 1968 Stanley Cup championship. The Ducks have defeated the defending champion Blackhawks (30-8-11) in five consecutive games, including once already this season. ... The Ducks set a franchise record with nine goals, including a club-record six while on the power play, during a 9-1 rout Wednesday of the Vancouver Canucks. Corey Perry was one of three players to score twice, pushing his team-leading total to 27 this season. He also had two assists, giving him 53 points and moving him into fifth among the league leaders. Teammate Ryan Getzlaf is fourth with 56 points, including a team-best 32 assists. ... Patrick Kane leads Chicago with 56 points.

Source:http://www.dailynews.com/sports/20140116/preview-anaheim-ducks-look-to-extend-winning-streak-vs-chicago-blackhawks

Washington Capitals vs Columbus Blue Jackets- Live Stream,Tips and NHL Match Preview

Washington Capitals vs Columbus Blue Jackets Live Stream

Coverage: CSM+/FSOH
Arena: Nationwide Arena, Columbus, Ohio
Friday January 17, 7:00 pm EST 
CompetitionWashington Capitals vs Columbus Blue Jackets

PREVIEW:

Their longest winning streak of the season has the Columbus Blue Jackets gaining confidence.
The Washington Capitals are also on the verge of matching a season-high streak - something they would prefer to avoid.
Seeking their fifth consecutive victory Friday night, the host Blue Jackets look to end a five-game losing streak to the Capitals, who will be trying to avert a season high-tying fourth straight defeat.
Columbus (22-20-4) beat Tampa Bay 3-2 on Monday for its fifth victory in six games in the new year, as Mark Letestu redirected Jack Johnson's shot from the point with 2:38 left for the winning goal. It was the Blue Jackets' second power-play goal of the third period as they rallied for their longest run of 2013-14.
"We got our game back," coach Todd Richards said about the step up after a dismal second period. "To me, that's a sign of the character you're looking for from your group. Teams are going to make pushes, get some momentum in the game ... but I like the way we went after it in the third period."
Columbus outshot Tampa Bay 11-7 in the third after the Lightning held a 12-7 advantage in the second.
Forward Nathan Horton scored his 200th career goal to pull the Blue Jackets even in the final period. Horton, who missed the first 40 games this season while recovering from shoulder surgery after joining the team as a free agent last summer, has two goals and two assists in six contests since debuting Jan. 2.
"We showed some character coming back," Horton said. "That's what we (got) when we needed it most."
Washington (22-17-8) will need some as well as it looks to avoid another loss. The Capitals fell 4-3 to Pittsburgh on Wednesday, getting outshot 37-28 and allowing two straight Penguins goals - the final one with 1:54 left - after taking the lead on Alex Ovechkin's 34th goal at 8:35 of the third.
"We figured out a way to lose it tonight," coach Adam Oates told the team's official website. "We had two chances (to win it), two chances in the third, and (we made) too many mistakes on both goals."
Washington had scored one goal in each of its previous two defeats - both in shootouts - and has gone 2-3-4 in its last nine. The Capitals, winners of the Southeast Division last season, are 18 points behind first-place Pittsburgh in the newly formed Metropolitan Division.
"We did a lot of good things in the game. And obviously, you get tired of saying that too, especially when we blow it," Oates said. "Tonight we played a good game and we figured out a way to get leads in the third against a fresher team, and we didn't sustain it. You have to be able to."
Maybe Friday's matchup will allow Oates' club to get back on track. Washington has gone 5-0-1 in the last six in the series, taking both meetings of 2013-14 at home in the teams' first season as division rivals.
Ovechkin scored for the second straight game and third time in four Wednesday, and he has four goals and three assists in his past seven. He's scored in each of the last three meetings with Columbus, recording four goals in that span.
Letestu has three goals in his last two contests

Source:http://www.sportingnews.com/nhl/preview/2014011729/washington-capitals--columbus-blue-jackets

Thursday, January 2, 2014

St. Louis Blues vs. Los Angeles Kings - Live Stream, Tips and NHL Match Preview





Written by Daniel MacDonald

It's a re-match of last spring's excellent first-round battle as the Los Angeles Kings (25-12-4, 3rd PAC 5th WC) visit the St. Louis Blues (27-7-5, 2nd CEN 3rd WC) tonight.
The game takes place at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis and is scheduled to start at 01:00 GMT & 08:00 PM ET.
The game is streaming live online with bet365.

Preview:

Despite their excellent record, the Kings didn't exactly close out the calender year of 2013 with a bang; they are on a 4 game losing streak, which culminated in a 3-2 defeat at the hands of a mediocre Dallas Stars team on Tuesday. Thursday will mark the end of a four-game road trip, which hasn't exactly gone as hoped for a Kings squad looking to gain ground in the cutthroat Pacific Division.

Though he has had an entirely disappointing season to this point, Kings captain Dustin Brown (7-6, +12) named to the American Olympic team on Wednesday, a testament to his reputation as a leader and a game-changing two way force, rather than current form.

A representative for his country in Vancouver 2010, the Kings can only hope that the nomination perhaps gives Brown confidence and incentive to play better. As it stands right now, he is on pace for his worst offensive season since 2005-06, and is fast becoming one of the more over-valued players in the league.

This underproduction from Brown, 29, isn't a recent problem, either; he had only 4 points (3-1) in 18 playoff games last season, and his inability to score for the Kings was a huge reason they couldn't get past the eventual champion Blackhawks in the Western final. Bottom line, everyone expects him to be better. 2 points (1-1) in 10 games simply isn't going to cut it.

With incumbent starer Jonathan Quick still sidelined with a hip injury, unheralded Martin Jones (8-2-3, 1.29GAA .955SP) has been an absolute revelation in net for the Kings, and has likely ironed down the back-up position when Quick returns. Though he hasn't yet tipped his hat as to a Thursday starter, expect head coach Daryl Sutter to again lean on Jones against a tough Blues squad.

The Blues are in the midst of proving right all of the prognosticators who pegged them as a pre-season Stanley Cup favorite. They are riding a 3 game win streak, and have only 1 regulation loss in their last 11 games (8-1-2).

Three Blues received invitations on Wednesday to play for their country at the Sochi Olympics. Blues captain David Backes (16-14, +11) is a veteran of the Olympics, having participated for the Americans in Vancouver 2010. He will bring a bruising body and the ability to score, along with a fiercely competitive demeanor that USA brass hopes will rub off on the younger, more inexperienced members of the team.

Center TJ Oshie (6-27, +11) also received an invitation to represent the Americans. Sochi will be the first Olympic games for the young center, who is fast developing into one of the best puck distributors in the game. At 27, Oshie is coming into his prime, and is turning into one of the more underrated offensive stars on a Blues team which seems chock full of them. He has 6 points (2-4) from his last six games.

The other Blue to receive an Olympic invite was young defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk (6-22, +9) who, at 24 years old, will be making his first Olympic appearance.

The Blues have been platooning their starting goaltenders of late, with Brian Elliot (10-1-2, 1.96GAA .922SP) achieving better results than Jaroslav Halak. Look for Elliot to get the start, coming off a strong 24 save win against Minnesota on Tuesday.

There is no love lost between these two clubs, after a mean and bruising 6 game playoff series last May. They play extremely similar styles, meshing offensive skill with responsible defense and punishing body-checking. In their first meeting of the season, the Kings used 2 goals from rookie Tyler Toffoli to beat St. Louis 3-2. It was a mean game, and much of the same should be expected on Thursday.

If you're looking for a favorite, consider the Kings record against St. Louis dating back to last season (including playoffs). They are 7-2 against St. Louis, and seem to be kryptonite for an otherwise excellent Blues squad. Look for the Kings to continue their solid form against St. Louis tonight, so long as their top offensive performers contribute at expected levels.


Source:  http://www.crunchsports.com/category/NHL/St-Louis-Blues-vs-Los-Angeles-Kings-Live-Stream-Tips-and-NHL-Match-Preview-201401020019/

NBA: Sacramento Kings vs. Philadelphia 76ers - 1/2/14

Written by Dan on January 2, 2014

 The Sacramento Kings square off against the visiting Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday night.
Head to head, the 76ers are 9-1 ATS in the last 10 meetings and 5-0 ATS in the last 5 meetings in Sacramento. The Kings are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall, but just 3-13 ATS in their last 16 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400 and 4-14 ATS in their last 18 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. The 76ers on the other hand are 12-29 ATS in their last 41 games playing on 0 days rest, 0-7 ATS in their last 7 road games vs. a team with a losing home record and 4-12 ATS in their last 16 games overall.

I can't wait for the day when the Sacramento Kings are a reliable against the spread team. It seems like we have been watching the same old Jekyll and Hyde squad for the past 10 years, well it seems like that for me anyway. I know I harp on this quite a lot, but I feel it's important when you are betting on this team, or against them, which is more likely the case.

Something I noticed about the Kings this season as been their propensity to beat the elite teams and lose the bottom feeders, well at home anyway. The stats also back that up as Sacramento is just 3-13 against the spread versus crappy road teams, to put it bluntly. In December, the Kings took down the Heat, Rockets and Mavericks by an average of 11.6 points while also losing to the Jazz, Lakers and Hornets by an average of 13.3. I don't think too many teams could pull this off, not in a month anyway, maybe two or three.

As far the Philadelphia 76ers are concerned, they are coming off consecutive road wins after losing 13 straight away from home. The 76ers have been terrible on the road this season, there's no two ways about it, but they looked much better in recent stops in Los Angeles (against a short-handed Lakers squad) and in Denver last night (a team that has now lost eight straight).

Philly is on a back-to-back tonight and I'm not sure how good their last two road wins actually were, but I just have a hard time taking the Kings as near on double-digit favorites anytime, and that's what it ultimately comes down to. Sacramento could win this won by 20 or lose by 20, neither result would surprise me...

Source: http://sportschatplace.com/nba-picks/2014/01/02/sacramento-kings-vs-philadelphia-76ers

NBA:Golden State Warriors won't sneak up on Miami Heat

By JIMMY DURKIN/MediaNews Group

MIAMI -- The Warriors possess all the natural respect they should have for the two-time defending NBA champion Miami Heat.

That's something that doesn't just travel a one-way street.

"They're a versatile team," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said of the Warriors (20-13). "Big, athletic, shooting, they've got it all. We have great respect for them."

Miami star LeBron James called Warriors guards Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson "two of the best shooters in history that I've seen."

"The volume of shots, the type of shots they take, you can't stop them from taking them," James said. "They shoot the ball extremely well. They're nicknamed the Splash Brothers for a reason."

Curry and Thompson's willingness, and effectiveness, at shooting from anywhere on the court make the Warriors a difficult team to prepare for, Spoelstra said.

"The way the two of them shoot the ball and their skill set, how quick their release is and how deep their range is -- it's unique," Spoelstra said. "You don't play that ever against anybody else. There's a lot of things when you face the Heat that teams have never seen, that's true for them as well, just in a different way."

The Warriors won at Miami last year during a 6-1 trip, the best record on a seven-game trip in team history. That was with center Andrew Bogut hurt and before the offseason acquisition of swingman Andre Iguodala. The Heat sees the Warriors as a tougher and more versatile team this year.

"They're dynamic," Heat forward Shane Battier said. "Last year they played small. They can play big this year. They're versatile, especially with Iguodala. He's the West Coast version of LeBron. You can put him in multiple places on the floor and he unlocks the versatility."

The Warriors clearly seem to have the attention of the champs, but the bigger challenge in this game still rests on the shoulders of Golden State.

James missed a game recently dealing with a groin and ankle injury, but returned to score 26 in a win Monday over Denver. Dwyane Wade left that game with a back injury and was held out of Wednesday's practice.

But no matter how you slice it -- and even if Wade were to miss the game -- there's a reason the Heat has won two consecutive titles and has the league's fifth-best record.

The Warriors are happy to at least being taking the momentum of a six-game winning streak into the contest, but know they have a tall mountain to climb.

"They're the champs and they have the best player in the world and in my opinion, the third-best shooting guard that's ever played the game," Golden State coach Mark Jackson said of James and Wade. "It's going to be a tough challenge. We're playing great, but this is a team that creates a lot of problems."

The Warriors insisted they weren't worried 2 1/2 weeks ago when they were barely hovering above .500. Now they sit within a game of the Pacific Division-leading Los Angeles Clippers entering play Wednesday and are feeling even better about themselves.

"It helps for sure," Curry said of the winning streak. "Our confidence never wavered, even when we were struggling, but to have positive results the last two weeks is definitely a good feeling. It's going to be a fun game, a competitive game, and we're looking forward to it."

Source:  http://www.dailydemocrat.com/sports/ci_24831744/golden-state-warriors-wont-sneak-up-miami-heat

Nashville Predators vs Boston Bruins Preview: Let's start 2014 off right


Written By: Jonathan Garcia

The first game of 2014 sees the Predators making their only stop to Beantown this season.

The Nashville Predators ring in the new year by squaring up with the Boston Bruins at TD Garden tonight. The team hopes to keep the momentum of the last two games rolling against this Eastern Conference powerhouse, while Boston wants to get off their mini-schneid, as they've lost two straight.

The Boston Bruins
Unfortunately for the B's, they got news that stalwart defenseman Dennis Seidenberg is going to miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL and MCL. It isn't the end of the world for them since they still have options on the blueline, Zdeno Chara being the main minute-eater. Still, Tampa Bay and Montreal are only four points behind them in the Atlantic Division race, so having a top player out could give either of them an opportunity to take advantage of.

They will have reinforcements tonight, in the form of Carl Soderberg and Dougie Hamilton. Soderberg scored in the December 23rd game. It will also be a boost that the Bruins are playing on their home ice, where they have been remarkable so far this year (16-4-2).

Of course, with the roster of players they have, it's going to be a tough night for the Predators anyway. Jarome Iginla, David Krejci, and Milan Lucic all have a five-game point streak going, racking up eight goals and nine assists all together.

The Nashville Predators 

Even though Seth Jones didn't get picked for the USA Olympic roster, (it was a long shot to begin with) he has still being playing some great hockey recently. The whole team has, but that means nothing right now. We've seen too many times this season where a couple of great games lead to a string of stinkers, and vice versa.

But climbing up the standings latter is not going to be an easy task for Nashville. Entering tonight's action they are last in the Central, three points behind the Jets and 12 points behind the third place Avalanche. The Phoenix Coyotes occupy the final Wild Card spot, a full nine points clear of the Preds.

Is it impossible? Not mathematically, although let's not get delusional. The Predators season is going to end in May. However, if they can put forth the effort we've seen recently into every game they play, they can at least make the last few months very interesting.

FS-TN has the action for you at 6:00 p.m. CST. I hope your New Year's resolution is to indulge in hockey more than you did last year.


Source: http://www.ontheforecheck.com/2014/1/2/5266660/nashville-predators-boston-bruins-preview-lets-start-2014-off-right

Sugar Bowl 2014: Oklahoma vs. Alabama live NCAAF Online Game,Schedule

Written By: Matt Couden

 The 2014 NCAA football live stream and TV bowl games schedule brings just one matchup to the spotlight on Thursday, Jan. 2, as the Sugar Bowl 2014 edition takes place in Mercedes-Benz Superdome at New Orleans, Louisiana. The game will feature the nearly season-long No.1 team with the Alabama Crimson Tide, who fell short in their quest for a third-straight BCS Championship, due to a big upset by Auburn. It will also feature an Oklahoma Sooners team that many fans might have expected more from this past season. The latest televised and live stream NCAA football game will be provided for fans via ESPN networks.

According to SB Nation on Jan. 2, tonight’s game will feature an Alabama Crimson Tide team which failed to make the BCS National Championship game and will be playing to win a record ninth Sugar Bowl matchup. On the other hand, Oklahoma was never really in the BCS title discussion for the majority of the season, yet they still managed to end with a BCS Bowl game. The team can use this game as a barometer of just how good they are, or where they need to improve, as they move forward to the next season.

Last year’s Sugar Bowl featured the Louisville Cardinals defeating the Florida Gators 33-23, with an attendance of 54,178 at the game. The game drew a Nielsen rating of 6.4, with each school getting a payout of $17 million per team. Tonight’s game is likely to draw more interest, due to the fact Alabama was among the elite teams for this past season, and was “the elite team” the past two years. Oklahoma’s loyal fans who aren’t at the game will surely be watching as well.

Alabama is of course led by quarterback A.J. McCarron, who was among the finalists for the Heisman Trophy, but ultimately lost to quarterback Jameis Winston of Florida State. McCarron, who could become a top NFL draft pick, put up stats of 2,676 yards passing with 26 touchdowns on 207-of-306 completed passes so far this season. The game will also feature running T.J. Yeldon for the Tide, who scored thirteen touchdowns this past season and averaged six yards a carry.

For the opponents will be Oklahoma quarterback Blake Bell, who is not necessarily the most prolific QB in the nation, but nicknamed the “Belldozer,” has the ability to plow through the defense for short yardage situations, including those at the goal line. Brennan Clay led the Sooners in rushing as he also averaged nearly 6 yards a carry, scored 6 touchdowns and compiled 913 yards. Add in 553 yards and 7 touchdowns from Damien Williams, and the Sooners have a nice two-man ground attack.

Statistically, No.11 Oklahoma was 10-2 overall and 7-2 in the Big 12. They rank 17th in rushing yards with 235.8 a carry, and are the 22nd best defensive squad in college football, allowing opponents just 21.3 points per game. They’re not necessarily the highest-scoring team in the country, as they averaged just 31.8 points a game. The No.3 Alabama Crimson Tide on the other hand have the nation’s second best defense with 11.3 points a game allowed. Their offense puts up a touchdown more per game on average, while they also rank 21st in the nation in rushing with 212 yards on the ground per game.

Odds makers have Alabama as 17-point favorites heading into tonight’s game, while the over/under is anywhere from 51 1/2 to 53 total points for the game, depending on the sports book. Weather won't be a factor due to the domed stadium in New Orleans, which is also home to the NFL's Saints.

Thursday night's Sugar Bowl 2014 between Oklahoma and Alabama has a scheduled start time of 8:30 p.m. EST. The latest game will be televised in standard and hi-definition on ESPN for cable or satellite viewers. In addition, the game will be live streaming on the ESPN broadband sports network, WatchESPN, but is only available through specific cable or satellite TV providers. See more info here on how to watch online including any device restrictions, regional blackouts and which cable/satellite companies provide the live stream service for their customers.


 Source:http://www.examiner.com/article/sugar-bowl-2014-oklahoma-vs-alabama-live-stream-football-game-tv-start-time