NFC and AFC Championships are Set

By Nick Baum

MONDAY – 1/14/19

The National Football Conference and the American Football Conference of the NFL will decide who to send to the Super Bowl this Sunday the 20th. In the AFC, the dynasty of Tom Brady and the Patriots will play Pat Mahomes’s up and coming Kansas City Chiefs in a high scoring game.

In the NFC, the Los Angeles Rams led by young quarterback Jared Goff and elite running back Todd Gurley will face the New Orleans Saints under veteran quarterback Drew Brees. Both teams in the NFC championship game had to beat an NFC East team to get there, too.

It is also the first time that the four teams left in the playoffs are the four highest scoring offenses in the league, meaning that you should expect a good, high scoring game on the offensive front this weekend.

Sources and Pictures: Wikimedia Commons, SB Nation, ESPN, NBC Sports

Clemson Win National Championship

By Nick Baum

TUESDAY – 1/8/19

The 2 seeded Clemson breezed past the defending champions and number 1 seeded Alabama 44-16 last night. Alabama was shut out in the second half of play, scoring no points while Clemson scored 13 to build off of their 31-16 at halftime.

This is the third championship won by Clemson, and the second under head coach Dabo Swinney. However, Alabama has won 17 national championships and were also favorites going into Monday night, making the upset all the more remarkable.

Both teams had also had perfect records going into the game, with Clemson’s win solidifying a 15-0 season. Clemson also demolished their opponent in the semifinals, beating Notre Dame 30-3 in the Cotton Bowl.

Sources and Pictures: ESPN, Flickr, Google, Wikipedia

2018 NFL Pro Bowl Rosters are Set

By Nick Baum

WEDNESDAY – 12/19/18

After the long and open process of voting, the rosters for 2018’s NFL Pro Bowl, the all-star game of the best players in the NFL, has been announced. This year it will be held in Orlando, where there will undoubtedly be another great display between the best of the league.

Potential MVPs Pat Mahomes at quarterback and Todd Gurley at running back, as well as veteran players such as Deandre Hopkins and Travis Kelce have once again made another appearance.

On defense, former Super Bowl MVP Von Miller has been selected once again, and Defensive Player of the Year JJ Watt has made another appearance on defense. In the Pro Bowl, one half, the NFC, plays the other half, the AFC, resulting in a big clash of rivals.

Sources and Pictures: Flickr, NFL.com, SB Nation

Atlanta United Wins the MLS Cup

By Nick Baum

MONDAY – 12/10/18

Atlanta United, one of the newest teams in Major League Soccer, have won the MLS Cup in just their second season. They beat the Portland Timbers 2-0 at the Mercedez Benz Stadium in front of a record-setting 70,000 people to become champions of the MLS.

Because of the championship win, Atlanta United has become the second-fastest team to win a championship since creation in American sports. The fastest team to do so is also in the MLS, the Chicago Fire, who won the MLS Cup in their first year.

Atlanta United had overcome many obstacles and records along the way. The team’s star player, Josef Martinez, scored the most goals in MLS history as well as winning MVP in what is most likely his final season in the MLS. They got a first-round bye, beat New York City FC by a large margin, and beat the New York Red Bulls for their first time to go to the MLS Championship.

Sources: Fox Sports, MLS.com, ESPN

OPINION: Esports are not Real Sports

By Nick Baum

SATURDAY – 11/10/18

The craze over esports has grown and grown, and to be honest, I don’t have a problem with that. Video games are fun as heck, and competitive competitions are a great way to spread popularity, share skills, and all around have fun. However, you cannot call it a sport.

Sure, studies have shown that playing video games helps your mentality, it increases your alertness and is overall good for your mental health, but the definition of a sport is a competition or activity that requires physical exertion or contact. In esports, the most “moving” you do is moving your fingers and thumbs around pressing different buttons.

So stop comparing virtual athletes to real athletes. Stop comparing Ninja to LeBron James, the Overwatch World Cup to the FIFA World Cup, and overall esports to real sports. While video games are fun and I have nothing wrong with them or video game competitions, in the end, you can’t compare it with real sports.

Sources and Pictures: Flickr, Oxford Dictionary, IGN

EXCLUSIVE: The World Cup so Far

By Nick Baum

WEDNESDAY – 6/20/18

The 2018 World Cup has only been around for six days so far, but we have already seen plenty of action, many of which unexpected, across the tournament. The first game of the tournament was in Thursday, with Russia taking the biggest win of the tournament so far, 5-0 against Saudi Arabia.

Soon after, Saudi Arabia flew to its next game, only for the plane’s engine to take fire, (An accurate representation of them playing Russia), but fortunately, the plane safely landed, and everyone was safe. Meanwhile, 2014 World Cup champions Germany lost 1-0 to the underdogs Mexico, and fans there cheered so loudly that it created a registered earthquake.

Switzerland managed to tie with Brazil, a World Cup favorite, by locking down on defense. Before then, Portugal and Spain tied 3-3, with Portugal’s Ronaldo scoring a hat trick (three goals) that game. Russia recently played its second match against Egypt, winning yet again with a score of 3-1, with Egypt’s Mo Salah scoring a penalty.

What has been seen by many as weird and embarrassing are the amount of own goals in the tournament so far. In 17 matches, 5 own goals have been scored, making Own Goal the leading goal scorer of the tournament so far. Now, it is time for the second match day for the teams. Every country has already played once with an exception of Russia and Egypt whom kicked off the next series in the World Cup.

Sources: Bleacher Report, Fox Sports, ESPN, Wikimedia Commons

EXCLUSIVE: World Cup Starts Today

By Nick Baum

6/14/18 – THURSDAY

The 2018 FIFA World Cup will kick off today when the host country Russia (who automatically makes it) plays Saudi Arabia. This year’s world cup in Russia will feature dozens of stadiums, 32 teams, and like every year, will revolve around the host’s culture.

Some of the favorites of this year’s World Cup include Spain, Brazil, France, and Argentina, which includes Messi. Just yesterday, despite the 2018 World Cup not starting, the 2026 World Cup had been decided, when a FIFA council voted unanimously to bring the games to the US – Canada – Mexico joint bid, rather than Morocco.

In the 2026 World Cup, plans have already been announced that there will be 48 teams in the games, and that Canada will host 10, Mexico will host 10, and the United States will 40. Back to the 2018 World Cup however, it is a close race and a fierce competition, even if the United States, Italy, and Netherlands will be missing it.

Sources: Fox, ESPN, SB Nation