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April 30th 2010: Daily Sports News-Gossip-Headlines

Friday Water Cooler – April 30th, 2010

Here we go with today’s sports water cooler talk. Here, you won’t just find the straight news; you’ll find the stuff everyone is talking about – the ice breakers, the Twitter Sports Picks and topics…well, basically all the stuff you discuss at the water cooler.

Enjoy!

Basketball takes center stage in today’s news thanks to a major upset, an award handed out and an intriguing rumor.

NBA news: Spurs blow 22-point lead but hang on to eliminate Mavs; Tyreke Evans wins Rookie of the year

Everything about the regular season suggested that this year’s playoffs would be different for the Dallas Mavericks and San Antonio Spurs. The Mavs had a fantastic season and finally looked like the superior team on paper; the Spurs battled injuries and inconsistency all season long.

In the end, however, just as we see in the NHL whenever the Sharks choke versus Detroit, the Spurs got hot when it mattered (especially Tim Duncan) and rode their experience to victory.

They blew a 22-point lead against Dallas at home in Game 6 of the Western Conference quarter-final but still hanged on for a 97-87 victory.

It’s hardly surprising to learn that Sacramento’s Tyreke Evans is the 2009-10 NBA Rookie of the Year. He led rookies in scoring, averaging 20.1 points per game, placed second in assists at 5.8 and fifth in rebounds at 5.3.

Evans is just the fourth rookie in NBA history to average at least 20 points, five assists and five boards per game.

The other three: Oscar Robertson, Michael Jordan and LeBron James. Yowza.

Rumor of the day: Phil Jackson could leave the Lakers after this season. According to his girlfriend Jeanie Buss, the executive vice-president of the Lakers, he’ll probably stay in La-La Land if the Lakers win the title again this year in hopes of three-peating next year.

Otherwise, Phil may explore the job opportunities out there this summer.

New Jersey?

MLB news: Dodgers’ GM sees the glass half empty with Matt Kemp

When your former first-place team is fledgling in the basement, it’s only a matter of time before you start pointing fingers. But is Los Angeles Dodgers GM Ned Colletti pointing his at the wrong guy?

Apparently, leading his team in homers and RBI and ranking among the National League leaders in those categories isn’t enough for Matt Kemp. Colletti called him out the other day for his bad baserunning (caught five times in eight tries this season) and supbar defense.

The latter is a surprise since Kemp was a Gold Glover last season.

Calling out your star player isn’t always the smartest move and it appeared to backfire yesterday.

Perhaps overthinking things after getting criticized, Kemp made a costly misplay in the Dodgers’ loss to the Pirates. He misplayed a hit from Ryan Doumit in the outfield; the play scored two runs and wound up deciding the game.

The Dodgers have now lost five straight.

Hockey news: Teen goalie wins championship with multiple injuries

Think you’re a tough guy? Not compared to 16-year-old goaltender Douglas Critch, who plays for the La Scie Jets in Newfoundland, Canada. He thought he tore a muscle in his stomach or chest in Game 2 of his league championship series but he shook it off and played through it for three more games en route to the title.

Turns out he didn’t tear a muscle; he broke four ribs and punctured his lung. And played through all that.

And won.

Yep, this guy is manlier and cooler than me by a significant margin.

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