Happy Saturday, everyone – we hope everyone is doing well and staying safe, of course!
Starting today – and every day going forward! – we are going to hop back in time and share some exciting sports memories for each particular day. And today, our post is all about what happened in the sports world on April 4th, enjoy.
On This Date in History: April 4th
1948: 84-year-old Connie Mack challenged 78-year-old Clark Griffith to a race from home plate to first base. And the end result was a tie.
1974: Hank Aaron tied Babe Ruth‘s home run record (714) against the Cincinnati Reds. Four days later (April 8th, to be exact) he would break the record from 1935, establishing a new mark for home runs with 715.
1986: Wayne Gretzky recorded his 213th point of the 1985-86 season during a 9-3 setback to the Calgary Flames. Gretzky, who would finish the year with 215 points, broke his old record of 212 points in a single0season.
1993: The Texas Tech women’s basketball team captured its initial NCAA Championship with an 84-82 win over Ohio State. Sheryl Swoopes, who was named the Most Outstanding Player, established a single-game championship scoring record of 47 points.
1994: Arkansas‘ men’s basketball team won its first-ever NCAA Championship – the Razorbacks beat the Blue Devils of Duke in the title game.
1997: The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim secured their first-ever postseason berth, which would conclude in the NHL conference semifinals. The Ducks won their first-ever postseason series in the quarterfinals – they outlasted the Phoenix Coyotes in seven games before falling to the Detroit Red Wings in four-straight semifinal contests.
2011: Coach Jim Calhoun leads the Connecticut men’s basketball team to an NCAA Championship – the Huskies beat Butler, 53-41. Current Boston Celtics guard Kemba Walker scored 16 points for the Huskies.
Happy Friday, everyone – we made it to the end of the work week!
Sure, it is cloudy outside our window, but luckily the snow (and slush) has disappeared. It’s going to be a rainy morning before it gets quite chilly this weekend, but next week should be a bit warmer – something to think about.
Anywho, have a wonderful weekend, everyone, and enjoy time with family and friends!
The Boston Sports Scoreboard
The Boston Bruins will enjoy another off day before hosting the Phoenix Coyotes tomorrow afternoon at the TD Garden. Puck drop is scheduled for 3 p.m.
The Boston Celtics return to the hardwood this evening to host the Atlanta Hawks at 7:30 p.m. Boston will not feature any new players in their line-up as they did not make a trade yesterday at the NBA Trade Deadline.
The Noontime Headlines (and Links)
Boston Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge said they could not find a trade yesterday prior to the deadline. (Boston Globe)
A “We want Tacko!” chant broke out last week when the Celtics were playing the Golden State Warriors. (Boston.com)
The XFL begins this weekend and former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Landry Jones is the face of the league. (ESPN.com)
The XFL hopes to capture the attention of football fans during the end of winter and early spring. (NPR.org)
Jake DeBrusk apparently trolled Charlie McAvoy after he scored his first goal of the season on Wednesday. (NESN.com)
Major League Baseball (MLB) Commissioner Rob Manfred gave a hint about how the league will discipline the Boston Red Sox for sign-stealing. (NBC Sports)
VIDEO OF THE DAY: We didn’t share any links about Tom Brady and where he will be playing next season – the mystery continues – but apparently Colin Cowherd seems to know where the six-time Super Bowl champion will be playing next fall.
We continue our previews of the opening round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, with a look at the matchups in the Western Conference:
(1) Vancouver Canucks vs. (8) Chicago Blackhawks:
This is a matchup of the defending Stanley Cup Champs, and the team considered the favorite to hoist the Cup this year. The Canucks have never won it all, but they put themselves in a prime position by capturing the Presidents’ Trophy for the first time. Vancouver is loaded offensively, starting with the Sedin brothers, Daniel and Henrik, (198 total points between them.) Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford will be tested. Chicago is the champ until someone proves otherwise. But the ‘Hawks face a tall task by starting out as the #8 seed.
(2) San Jose Sharks vs. (7) Los Angeles Kings:
It’s an all-California matchup, as these two Pacific Division foes meet in the playoffs for the first time. Antti Niemi has been sensational between the pipes for the Sharks. This is the same goaltender who played against San Jose in the Western Conference Finals last year as a member of the Blackhawks. The Kings will be without leading scorer Anze Kopitar for the duration of the playoffs. So, L.A. will be a defensive-minded team for sure. The Kings are solid in that department; only the Canucks and Bruins allowed fewer goals this season.
(3) Detroit Red Wings vs. (6) Phoenix Coyotes:
These two teams face off against each other in the opening round for the second year in a row. The Wings won last year in seven games. In Hockeytown, they don’t settle for anything less than a championship, so the pressure is always on Detroit from the get-go. Keep an eye on the goaltenders in this series: Detroit’s Jimmy Howard and the Coyotes’ Ilya Bryzgalov. Phoenix has not won a playoff series since moving to Arizona from Canada (remember the Winnipeg Jets?)
(4) Anaheim Ducks vs. (5) Nashville Predators:
This is a classic matchup of contrasting styles. The Ducks have a great offense; the Predators are a defensive-minded team. Anaheim has the NHL’s leading scorer, Corey Perry, who netted 50 goals this season. Add veteran Teemu Selanne to the mix, and the Ducks are loaded. But Nashville has one of the best goaltenders in the league in Pekka Rinne. He was second in the league this season in goals against average and save percentage, (Boston’s Tim Thomas is #1.)
So the matchups are set. Let’s drop the puck and get the intensity level boiling.