February 11th, 2019
Get filled in on who TF Marc Gasol, the Toronto Raptors' new big man, is. The Canadians were all over the podium this weekend on the slopes and on the ice. Get an update on our Canadian hockey teams. Lindsey Vonn won a bronze medal in the final race of her career. James Harden and Russell Westbrook are breakin’ records and hearts. If you can believe it, Kendall Coyne Schofield got even FASTER. See what’s up this week. And see what ~the stars~ are telling us.
The GIST: The Toronto Raptors channeled their inner Cardi B and made some serious trade deadline money moves on Thursday, picking up big man and center Marc Gasol from the Memphis Grizzlies.
Cool. But, who TF is Gasol?: Gasol is a 34-year-old Spaniard who has played in the NBA since 2008 for the Memphis Grizzlies. He’s a three-time NBA All-Star and in 2013 he was named the NBA Defensive Player of the Year. He’s also won two Olympic silver medals for Spain. Fun facts about Gasol? He’s an avid gardener(s’cute) and his brother is superstar baller Pau Gasol. Olay indeed.
He sounds amazing! But who did the Raps trade away?: To get our hands on Gasol, we had to part ways with fan favourite Jonas Valanciunas (pronounced VAL-EN-CHOON-US) who’d been with the Raps since being drafted in 2011. We also traded away Delon Wright, CJ Miles and a 2024 second-round draft pick.
Seems like a lot. Is Gasol worth it?: Just like rekindling a relationship with your ex, only time will tell. But, on paper, we think yes. Without a doubt, Gasol is a better center than Valanciunas (especially when it comes to passing and defence) and brings some much-needed depth to the position. This trade confirms the Raps are ALL IN for winning the NBA title this year. LFG!
How’d he play?: Gasol played his first game as a Raptor on Saturday and his presence was certainly felt. He came off the bench (meaning he didn’t start) and scored seven points and had six rebounds to help the Raps beat the New York Knicks 104-99.
The Red & White Flag, Keep it High, Keep it Visual
The GIST: In the biggest news since Ariana Grande dropped her album on Friday, the Canadian kids have been absolutely slaying it on the world stage.
On da slopes: This weekend Mikael Kingsbury became a TWO-TIME WORLD CHAMPION! Yep. You read that right. Kingsbury won two world moguls titles within 24 hours. You could say he’s a “mogul” of the moguls. Too far? Sorry, couldn’t help ourselves. Anyway. On Friday, Kingsbury won the moguls title and the next day he won the dual moguls title (two jumps on the moguls race compared to one). Just absurd.
Ice Ice Baby: Meanwhile, pairs figure skating duo Kirsten Moore-Towers and Michael Marinaro won a silver medal at the ISU Four Continents competition. They skated beautifully and were just 0.06 points shy of winning the gold. You might be thinking, WTF is the Four Continents? The event is for four of the five continents represented in the Olympic rings, including Africa, the Americas, Asia and Oceania—just excluding Europe. How rude.
Ice Ice Baby… again: But this time we’re adding some speed. This weekend in the short track speed skating World Cup final, Kim Boutin won THREE medals (!!!). She took home the gold in the 1,000-metre, silver in the 1,500 and a bronze medal in the women’s 500-metre event. YASSS KWEEN (pssstt—you might recognize Boutin’s name from some dah-rama surrounding her 2018 PyeongChang Olympics bronze medal win). Canada’s men also took home some medals. Cédrik Blais Châteauguay captured third in the 500-metre final and Steven Dubois took home the bronze in the 1,500-metre final. Bronzed boys.
Hello Out There, We're On the Air, It's Hockey Night Tonight
The GIST: Saturday was Hockey Day in Canada, a celebration of the sport from coast to coast that featured all seven Canadian NHL teams. Here’s an update on how our Canadian teams are sitting:
West Coast, Best Coast?: Not really. Despite dramatically firing their GM and having the best player in the NHL (Connor McDavid), the Edmonton Oilers suckcontinue to struggle. They lost 5-2 to the San Jose Sharks on Saturday and TBH, played v bad. Meanwhile, although Calgary lost to Vancouver and Winnipeg lost to Ottawa on Saturday, the Flames and the Jets lead their respective divisions (Central and Pacific) and look poised for the playoffs.
East Coast, Beast Coast?: Kind of. On Saturday, the Montreal Canadiens hosted their arch rivals, the Toronto Maple Leafs. The game gave us playoff ~vibes~ with the Leafs winning it in overtime 4-3. Actually, if the playoffs started today, these teams would be squaring off in the first round. Epic. Then, there’s the Ottawa Senators. Although they played really well against the Jets, they remain at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. Don’t fret Sens fans, as the great Drake once said… "started from the bottom now we here." And you can expect “here” to be the playoffs by 2021.
Tradesies: The NHL trade deadline is February 25th. Teams at the top of the standings will be looking to grab some top talent to help them in the playoffs while teams at the bottom will be putting their players up for sale to try and rebuild for next year. For our Canadian teams, the duo that’s most likely to be traded are the Sens’ Mark Stone and Matt Duchene.
GIST Some Other Sh!t You Should Know
- Yesterday, in the final pro race of her career, American Lindsey Vonn won the bronze medal at the World Championships in Sweden. With that medal, Vonn became the first female skier to win a medal at six World Championships. Talk about going out in style. She's retiring as the most successful female skier of all time, with a record of 20 World Cup titles and 82 victories on the circuit (four victories short of Swede Ingemar Stenmark's record of 86). #GOAT.
- Speaking of GOATs, there are two kings killin’ it on the court right now: Houston Rockets’ James Harden and Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook. On Saturday, the two squared off with the Thunder taking it 117-112. What was most impressive about this game was Harden extending his 30-point scoring streak to 29 games (!!!) and Westbrook extending his triple-double streak to nine games (!!!), tying him with legend Wilt Chamberlain. Casual.
- Remember Kendall Coyne-Schofield? The woman who killed the fastest skater competition in the NHL skills competition? Well, this weekend was the NWHL (National Women’s Hockey League) All-Star skills competition and Coyne-Schofield BEAT HER OWN TIME. At the NHL All-Star comp she skated a lap in 14.35 seconds. This weekend she did it in 13.9. It’s that constant self-improvement that makes her an Olympic gold medalist while we haven’t increased our speed on the treadmill in… about three years.
What’s Up This Week
Tonight: The Raptors will look to continue their four-game win streak tonight when they host the Brooklyn Nets and Wednesday when they host the Washington Wizards. Both games tip off at 7:30 p.m. ET.
Tuesday: The Sens are hosting the Carolina Hurricanes at 7:00 p.m. ET. Get your tickets here. After that, the Sens will be heading out on a four-game road trip.
Star Light, Star Bright
The GIST: Lindsey Vonn exceeded even the astrological expectations in the last race of her career on Sunday. Not only did she finish in the top 10, just like we predicted, but she landed on the podium with a bronze medal. Oh come on, we’re borderline psychic at this point!
Horoscope: Uh oh. The stars have been sending us positive vibes for the last few weeks but we’re sensing a shift. It looks like Kawhi Leonard’s v sensitive Cancer side will continue to come out this week as he takes a moment to adjust to newcomer Gasol (and the sad loss of JV). After dropping in just 11 points on Saturday against the New York Knicks, expect him to score less than his 26.9 points-per-game (PPG) average again on Monday against the New York Nets before he settles back into form.