Top 5 Games of Last Week (3/10/14 – 3/16/14)
In college basketball, if there’s ever a time to impress, it’s the week leading up to Selection Sunday. As usual, some teams got the memo, and some did not. Did yours?
#5. Boston Celtics at New Orleans Pelicans
OK, so I threw in an NBA game or two. An added twist? These are two losing teams. Still, sometimes a game makes the list because it features the rise of a future star, and this was one of those games. Anthony Davis became the first player in the NBA this season to put up over 40 points and 20 assists, putting the Pelicans on his back on the way to the OT win, 121-120. And he did all of it despite being hamstrung by teammate Al-Farouq Aminu, who nearly gave the game away on two separate occasions.
#4. Duke Blue Devils vs. Virginia Cavaliers
Sure, this game was more hype than substance, but that’s just because there was so much hype. The Blue Devils won by four points during the regular season matchup, and the Cavaliers seemed to come into this game with the chip on their shoulders. Leading up to the game, all anyone talked about was how the Virginia defense would matchup against the Duke offense, but it was the Duke defense that decided the game, letting Virginia score seven more points than in their first meeting. Fans, there’s no doubt you got a good game, but I’m guessing if you paid the average price of $$551.79 to see it in person, you might have been left wanting more.
#3. Golden State Warriors at Portland Trail Blazers
So much to say, so little space. First, I apologize to Portland fans who must think I have it in for the Trail Blazers. I assure you, I do not, despite detailing two painful losses last week. Second, I’ve got to hand it to the Warriors: they may be the most fun team to watch in the NBA this season. I waffle on this topic, but as of this week, it’s them. Trailing by as much as 18 in the first half, with superstar Curry no where to be found, they came back to win it on Klay Thompson’s three pointer with just 11 seconds left. Curry, the fact that your 37-4-5 games are no longer impressive is a testament to how well you’re playing this year. You won’t win MVP, but you’re in the running for most improved.
#2. Seton Hall Pirates vs. Villanova Wildcats
It was a tough call for number one this week, because this game was an upset with a capital WTF – the Pirates were 0-30 against teams ranked in the AP Poll’s top three heading into this game. And then suddenly, impossibly, they were 1-30. The Pirates beat the Wildcats on buzzer beating step-back jumper, 64-63, knocking the heavily favored Wildcats out of the Big East Tournament. The only thing the Pirates did wrong? They did it too damn early in the tournament! Oh, and uh, they lost in the next round to eventual champion Providence. That didn’t help either.
#1. Kentucky Wildcats vs. Florida Gators
A one point win in the finals of the SEC Tournament trumps a first round upset in the Big East Tournament, I’m afraid. Kentucky threw everything they had at the Gators, nearly knocking off the nation’s number one team, winners of 25 game in a row leading up to the finals. But it wasn’t enough. Florida staved off the feisty Wildcats, not allowing them a shot on their final possession, and breathed a sigh of relief as they walked away with a 61-60 victory. Fans in attendance got a better game than fans at the Duke-Virginia game, but the $464.10 price tag means I can’t quite make this the bang-for-your-buck winner of the week.