April 8th, 2019

#thegist of it is

The Baylor Lady Bears are your NCAA national champsWe think Notre Dame’s head coach should run for presidentThe stage is set for the NHL playoffsHer-story was made in golfAnd while Canada won in soccer and golf, not so much in hockey and curling.  

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Number One, Number One  

The GIST: The Baylor Lady Bears took down defending champions Notre Dame 82-81 last night to become your new women’s NCAA March Madness champs! It’s the team’s third national title.
 
Give me the deets: Baylor came out of the gates STRONG leading Notre Dame 25-14 at the end of the first quarter. HOW-EV-ER, this tournament isn’t called March Madness for nothing. Things started getting dicey for the Lady Bears in the second half after key player, Lauren Cox, went down with a knee injury. Notre Dame ended up clawing their way back to an 80-80 tie with only five seconds left.

  • And then...Baylor’s Chloe Jackson drove the lane to go up by two with 3.9 seconds left.
     

  • And then...Notre Dame’s superstar Arike Ogunbowale went to the free throw line. She missed the first one, so HAD to purposely miss the second shot in hopes that her team would rebound the ball and score two points. Unfortunately, she pulled an RJ Barrett and accidentally nailed the second shot, giving Baylor the W by just one point. Watch the game highlights here. So. Much. Drama.

MVP, MVP:Hands down, the MVP of the game was Baylor’s point guard and seniorChloe Jackson. She played all 40 minutes and drained 26 points including thego-ahead basket.

Off the court:What made the biggest impact on us during this women’s tournament was the inspiring words regarding female equality from Notre Dame’s head coach Muffet McGraw during the pre-championship game press conference. You have to watch her here (it’s only two minutes, everyone has two minutes). Even former president Barack Obamaretweetedthe video saying “a voice everybody should hear.”

  • Favourite line: “When is it gonna become the norm [women in leadership positions] instead of the exception.” #MuffetForPresident

Over on the men’s side: The boys were busy with the Final Four games on Saturday with No. 1 Virginia just beating No. 5 Auburn 63-62 and No. 3 Texas Tech upsetting No. 2 Michigan State 61-51.
 
Deets on tonight’s championship game: Many are calling this the “most ugly” NCAA final championship ever. Rude, we know, but maybe for good reason? Neither Virginia nor Texas Tech has ever won a national championship before and both teams are defensive powerhouses. This likely means we’ll see more of a low scoring back-and-forth defensive battle as opposed to seeing some beautiful offensive plays (which, in all honesty, can be tough to watch from home).
 
Watch it go down: Tonight at 9:20 p.m. ET. After three amazing weeks, we’re so sad to see this tournament coming to an end (but so excited to watch the grand finale).

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We're Talkin' 'Bout Playoffs

The GIST: The stage is finally set for the most wonderful time of the year—the NHL playoffs. Here’s #thegist on this year’s postseason:
 
Who’s in?: The teams reppin’ Canada are the Calgary Flames, Winnipeg Jets and Toronto Maple Leafs. See all of the first round matchups here.
 
How are the Canadian teams expected to do?: Far and away, the Flames are expected to be our best bet at bringing the Stanley Cup back to its homeland. Thanks to outstanding seasons from players like Johnny Gaudreau (aka ‘Johnny Hockey’) and Sean Monahan they were the top team in the Western Conference during the regular season and earned home-ice advantage.

  • Meanwhile, the Leafs are in for a tough go. They’re facing off (literally) against the Boston Bruins. Two of their last three trips to the playoffs started against the Bruins...and they lost both times. The Leafs also lost three of the four games they played against the Bruins this season.
     

  • The Benny and the Jets are playing against the St. Louis Blues in their first round. We’re a littttttle bit nervous for the Jets as lately, they’ve been kind of, sort of sh!tting the bed winning only four of their last 10 games. Certainly not the best time to be slumping. 

Remind me who won last year: The Washington Capitals, led by captain Alexander Ovechkin (aka Ovi), defeated the Vegas Golden Knights to win the franchise’s first ever championship. And in our opinion, Ovi celebrated the historic win in the best ways ever.
 
Who’s expected to win this year?: Hands down, the Stanley Cup favourite is the Tampa Bay Lightning. They won the President’s Trophy (awarded to the team with the best regular season record) winning 62 games (out of an 82 game season) and earning 21 more points than the next best team (two points for a win, one point for an overtime loss). Just ridiculous.
 
Players to watch: Watch out for Nikita Kucherov (Lightning), Steven Stamkos (also Lightning) John Tavares (Leafs), Ovi (Capitals), Johnny Hockey (Flames), and Nathan MacKinnon (Colorado Avalanche) to score a lot.

  • In net, expect rookie Jordan Binnington (Blues), Ben Bishop (Dallas Stars) and Jaraslav Halak (Bruins) to make some big saves. 

One more (and kind of scary) thing: NHL superstar (no really, he’s the best player in the league) and Edmonton Oiler, Connor McDavid, had a scary moment on Saturday night when he crashed into the net and hit his leg hard on the post. So scary that he literally thought his leg was broken. Fortunately, the x-rays came back negative. Phew.

Everything Else

Golf her-story: ICYMI, Augusta National (the PGA’s most famous course and home to the Masters) hosted its first-ever amateur women’s tournament. Friendly reminder that the course didn’t even allow women to become members until 2012, so it’s a BFD (granted, an annoying BFD) that they hosted a women’s tournament.

  • Snaps to 21-year-old American Jennifer Kupcho for winning the tournament and for one of the most epic back nine performances we’ve ever seen.  
     

  • Speaking of golf. Yesterday, Canadian Corey Connors won the Valero Texas Open for his first career PGA Tour victory, earning him an invitation to this week’s legendary Masters tournament. Thatta boy, Corey! 

Canada vs. U.S.A.:Name a more epic rivalry, we’ll wait. The IIHF women’s world championship commenced last week in Finland. While Canada started off the round-robin strong winning 6-0 against Switzerland, theylost 3-2on Saturday against arch nemesis, the U.S.

  • It’s like the U.S. has our number at this tournament. Canada hasn’t won a world championship game against the Americans since 2013...back when Miley Cyrus’ banger Wrecking Ball topped the charts. Yikes.
     

  • The good news? We beat the U.S. two games to one in the Rivalry Series earlier this year and it’s still very likely we’ll meet the U.S. in the final. 

Chip, chip, cheerio, darling:Last Friday our No. 5 world-ranked Canadian women’s soccer teamdefeatedNo. 3 ranked England 1-0 in an international friendly (exhibition game getting prepared for the World Cup this summer).

  • And guess who scored? Captain Christine Sinclair, because of course she did. The goal marked her 180th international career goal. She is now just four goals away from retired America Abby Wambach’s record of 184.

What to say when your friends ask how you’re doing your hair: “I’m curling it.” Well, so was Canadian skip Kevin Koe (pronounced COO-EE) in last night’s men’s curling world championship. Although Koe has made some absolutely RIDICULOUS shots this weekend (watch this for example), his magic touch ran out last night losing to Sweden 7-2. Close, but no cigar.

What’s Up This Week

Tuesday: The Toronto Raptors played their last home game of the season yesterday defeating Dwyane Wade and his Miami Heat 117-109 in overtime. FYI, Wade, a three-time NBA champ and 13-time All-Star is retiring at the end of the season and our Toronto faithful did good on him with this epic send off. The Raps face the Minnesota Timberwolves at 8 p.m. ET for their final game of the season on Tuesday.
 
Wednesday: NHL Playoff action kicks off (!!!) with five series in action. Get the schedule here.
 
All Week: The IIHF women’s world championship continues. Today our Canadians face Russia and on Tuesday they play host Finland. Both games are at 12:30 p.m. ET. Get the schedule here.

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Sign me up!