Don't Sleep On The Wizards This Year
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Don't Sleep On The Wizards This Year

Washington finally looks legit.

The Washington Wizards have had a very odd year. A slow start plagued them to begin the season, leading to a 2-8 start where they looked horrendous.

Luckily, Washington eventually hit their stride and ended the season 49-33. That was good enough for a Southeast division title and the four seed in the Eastern conference playoff picture.

The Wizards have now been to the postseason three of the past four years. The previous two times, Washington cruised by their first round opponent and looked poised for an Eastern Conference Finals berth. However, they stumbled in the second round and were ousted from contention.

This time around, I believe it will be different.

The Wizards have handled the Atlanta Hawks so far in this first round matchup. They're up 2-0 in the series thanks to a dynamic backcourt.

John Wall and Bradley Beal are lethal in their own separate ways. Wall's mix of speed, athleticism, and court vision has been on full display. He's netted back-to-back 32-point games to go along with 14 and nine assists.

Beal is known more for his versatile scoring ability. He can simply light it up from all areas on the floor.

The duo of Wall and Beal will carry the Wizards past Atlanta. In the second round, Washington will face either the Celtics or Bulls.

Surprisingly, the eighth seeded Bulls have taken a 2-0 series lead over the top seeded Celtics. Boston won't go down easy but a Chicago series victory would make Washington's path to the Eastern Conference Finals significantly easier.

I like the Wizards to make it there regardless. They will probably take on Cleveland for a trip to the NBA Finals on the line.

Washington can definitely give LeBron James and the Cavs a battle. I just don't know if they have enough firepower to get past them. Either way, Washington is a team nobody should sleep on.

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What To Watch For In Sports This Week (6/27)

The sports world keeps spinning when basketball ends, guys.

Sure, the basketball season may be over, but it doesn't mean that the sports world has to stop too. With great baseball, soccer and the biggest tennis tournament of the year taking center stage, this is a fantastic time to start following sports that are not necessarily on your radar.

Here is what to watch out for in sports this week.

Monday, June 27
College World Series: Arizona vs Coastal Carolina Game 1 (7 p.m. ET, ESPN)

The end of the college baseball series is upon with arguably the two biggest long shots in the CWS making it to the finals (well, at least according to oddsmakers in Las Vegas). If you're a fan of baseball in general, you owe it to yourself to watch this series.

The College World Series always provides us with great moments and these two teams have already done it. They both had to win three straight elimination games each just to get to the finals.

The Wildcats have allowed six runs in five games in Omaha, or 1.2 runs per game. Before this season, only four teams had allowed fewer than 1.5 runs per game for an entire run through Omaha, while Coastal Carolina is the first team to ever make it to the Championship series on its first trip to the CWS.

Tuesday, June 28
College World Series: Arizona vs Coastal Carolina Game 2 (8 p.m. ET, ESPN)
This is the second game of the College World Series in Omaha (It's that place that Peyton keeps yelling during every snap).

Expect a lot of power coming from both teams, especially Coastal Carolina. According to ESPN, Coastal Carolina has hit 95 home runs this season, the most in Division I in the past six seasons. Four Chanticleers have at least 15 home runs this season, while no other team in the nation has more than two players with that many homers.

Wednesday, June 29
Mets vs Nationals (7 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
*Obligatory MLB game of the week now that the NBA season is over*

Battle of the top two teams in the National League East division. Probable starters are Steven Matz of the Mets and Max Scherzer for the Nationals, so you know that it is going to be a great pitcher's duel.

This series could be an indication of who is going to be in charge of a loaded NL East division and a great launching point for anyone that was waiting for the NBA season to end to start watching MLB.

College World Series: Arizona vs Coastal Carolina Game 3 (If necessary) (8 p.m. ET, ESPN)
If we get a Game 3, congrats. You're watching college baseball's equivalent to Game 7 of the NBA Finals or the World Series.

Thursday, June 30
UEFA Euro 2016: Poland vs Portugal (3 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
After Argentine star Lionel Messi promptly and unexpectedly shocked the football world with his sudden retirement from international play, look for Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo to take the reins as the best international player with a solid performance against scrappy Poland in the quarterfinals.

While Portugal has struggled a bit in the group stage, Poland has looked very sharp, tying with reigning FIFA World Cup Champions Germany and edging out Switzerland in a penalty shootout in the round of 16.

While this is no Spain vs. Italy, this match could be a little gem when it is all said and done.

Saturday, July 2
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Daytona (7:45 p.m. ET, NBC)
Kyle Busch is in first place in the NASCAR Sprint Cup standings while there are eight drivers who have more points than Busch (yeah NASCAR's point system sure is hella confusing). Daytona is one of the biggest races in the NASCAR season and look for this race to be an extremely competitive one.

UEFA Euro 2016: Germany vs Italy (3 p.m. ET, ESPN)
This is definitely a World Cup Final caliber match and probably the most high profile game in this tournament so far. While it's only the quarterfinals, it might as well be the actual championship.

What to watch out for in this match is how Germany's offense, which has scored six goals in four games, will fare against Italy's goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon. Buffon, 38, is one of the best goalkeepers in the world and shut out defending European Champions Spain in the round of 16.

All Week Events
Wimbledon (ESPN Networks)
Perhaps the most prestigious tennis tournament in the world. There really isn't much to say about Wimbledon that can entice sports fans to watch it. Everybody knows what Wimbledon is.

The two biggest names right now in tennis right now, Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams, are on path for history. Djokovic just won the French Open, completing the Career Slam, winning all four Grand Slam tournaments in a career. Now he is in pursuit of the Golden Slam, doing a Career Slam and win an Olympic Medal.

Serena Williams right now is second in career women's Grand Slam titles with 21, one behind the all-time record. Unfortunately, she has faltered in the last two major tournament finals, so she will once again try to go for career major tournament win number 22.

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Kevin Durant Has Options in Free Agency

Will he "transfer" or stay where he's always been.

There are times in life where people want change. That can be switching up what you order at Chipotle, deciding you are going to get that haircut to look like just enough like a combination of a soccer player mixed with Macklemore mixed with that guy in that one frat who's kind of cool, or deciding to transfer to another school.

Well, Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder will have a summer where he can choose to stay in the place that he has grown accustomed to in tornado alley or he can choose to sign with another team that could offer him a much different pace to life than what he has now.

In college terms, KD has the chance to transfer to a new school that can offer him different things. Before he decides to declare for free agency, KD needs to think about what "transferring" to these other "schools" would bring him:

The Party School-The Los Angeles Lakers
Going to the party school is always the first thought anyone transferring has! Why sit in a house in the middle of nowhere when you can sit poolside in the Hills with Kobe Bryant in your ear and a Kardashian on your arm?!

Luke Walton is the new, cool coach in town and his schemes for KD will be as smooth as the Armani suits he'll wear courtside. KD can stroll into the clubs with Nick Young like Vaughn and Favreau in Swingers. He would have the chance to bring the Lakers back from the basement of the West and back where they belong in the Western Finals every year.

The Academic School-The San Antonio Spurs
Why party when you can study and dominate? Yeah, Nick Young has fun but he tends to forget the ball moves better down the court when you actually pass it to someone. KD can hit the books and learn from the greatest coach of our generation, Greg Popovich, and be the heir to the throne that Tim Duncan built.

Sure, it's San Antonio, but that Tex Mex tastes a lot better with a few rings on your fingers. Studying that much harder always makes you a better student than those other guys who go out every night, plus they won't get to eat those southwestern grilled carne asada burritos.

The School Back Home-The Washington Wizards
Sometimes transferring back home is the easiest choice. You're back on your turf in your own city. As soon as you are back you can immediately get back to hanging out with all those friends you had before you left. You know the entire area like the back of your hand, plus your mom is there to give you sandwiches.

KD can bring Washington to relevance in the East. He can also give Kyrie, Love, and LeBron a run for their money as the best big three with Bradley Beal and John Wall. With President Obama getting ready to leave, KD can pick up right where the president left off and run that city.

Not Transfer at All-The Oklahoma City Thunder
Why leave what you have loved for the past few years? What would he do with all of the hoodies and shirts that he got from his first few seasons there? Yes it's Oklahoma City, but KD can still hang out with his best bud Russell Westbrook in wrangling cows or eating corn dogs or doing whatever else it is they do for fun in Oklahoma City.

The entire city loves KD and he would break its heart by leaving after the incredible success they have had. There is a very real possibility that the Thunder can always compete with the Spurs and Warriors to make it back to the Finals and win one with him and Russell on the court.

Kevin Durant has a big choice with deciding where and if he wants to "transfer". The entire landscape of the NBA can be changed by one simple decision in free agency.

KD is one of the premier superstars of the league, it is his decision to continue being the chosen one for an entire city in Oklahoma or skipping town to go home, study or fist bump Jack Nicholson 41 times a year.


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John Wall Can't Catch a Break in DC

Wall posts a 52 spot in a loss to the Magic.

John Wall, ladies and gentlemen! Wall put up a career high 52 points tonight and the Wizards still managed to lose to the Orlando Magic by eight points (you're close, @heyitsrealdeal).

This seems to happen to Kentucky players a lot and it is pretty clear why. These guys are drafted to the worst NBA teams because they come from the best basketball college and then dominate the game, but their team still loses. Anthony Davis put up 50 points in the season opener and the Pelicans lost by seven.
There are currently 25 Kentucky players in the NBA. They span 18 teams, including the: Bulls, Cavaliers, Celtics, Grizzlies, Hornets, Jazz, Kings, Lakers, Magic, Nuggets, Pelicans, Raptors, Rockets, Sixers, Suns, Thunder, Timberwolves, and the Wizards. For such great players coming to these teams from UK, only 7/18 had records over .500 last season. All too often, we see superstar players get drafted to the bottom feeder teams and these players put up 50 points and still lose. How discouraging is that?
This game is obviously impressive from Wall, but is it as impressive as Klay Thompson's 60 and a win? Maybe not, but most of us can agree that it is still impressive. Except for Tramline Harris.
The Wizards are not the Warriors, Tramaine. That may even make Wall's 52 more impressive if he could do that on such a bad team. No matter what, both are two of the best players in the NBA and when anyone puts up 50 points, it is impressive.
So here's to the Washington Wizards getting better so that next time Wall puts up 50, they actually win the game and here's to more 52 point games from the former Wildcat John Wall!
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Redskins Continue Primetime Woes

Redskins outplayed by Cam and the Panthers on Monday Night Football

With Washington's loss to the Panthers Monday night, they have fallen behind both the Bucs and the Packers in the race for the NFC's second wild card race. This was not a must win (Aaron Rodgers believes World War II was a must win, but never a football game), but the Skins must win the next two and have a loss from both Tampa Bay (@ NO, vs Car) and Green Bay (vs Minn, @ Det)

Washington was touchdown favorites, but their Monday Night Football record is now 28-38. That record is 2-16 at FedEx Field. Yikes.

The Skins did not do too much well tonight. Their defense was the best aspect, but they still allowed 26 points to the downtrodden Panthers and let Jonathan Stewart run all over them. Their offense was dismal. The special teams didn't help and the turnovers certainly hurt the Skins.

Then after so many three and outs and turnovers, the Skins frustration got in the way and Jordan Reed decided to punch a helmet, which got him tossed. Talk about adding insult to injury. Double ouch.

Then there is always the story about Cam Newton sliding and getting hit in the head, but not getting any help from the officiating crew. Instead, Cam got flagged for taunting as he flipped the ball on the Redskins defender.

Nice work Redskins, you definitely set yourselves up for the playoffs tonight.

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George Washington Stood Up For Its Athletes

Abuse is not to be tolerated.

Mike Lonergen.

I'm sure that's a name that probably doesn't ring a bell to any of you. It definitely didn't for me. As a student athlete that competes in the Atlantic 10 Conference I am pretty familiar with George Washington University, as I'm sure most of you are.

On Saturday, Mike Lonergen, the head men's basketball coach was relieved of his coaching duties. You might ask, so what? Coaches are fired all the time.

Not like this though. This case has a similar feel the Mike Rice situation at Rutgers a couple years back. (Not quite Mike Rice, but a familiar abuse story).

In July, Lonergen was accused of emotional abuse by multiple players and a independent investigation by the Washington Post was conducted. (Here's the full article if you have some time).

The GW Men's team has experienced some success the past couple of seasons, shown by a NIT Championship this past season, which resulted in Coach Lonergen receiving an extension through 2021 (that clearly worked out well). It took guts for the administration to do the right thing.

Lonergan was accused of making comments ranging from telling a player he should transfer to a transgender league and also that one player's son would always be on food stamps. Ouch.

In Lonergen's five year tenure, 13 players have transferred to other schools, which raises some red flags. On the surface this was meaningless, supported by an ESPN report that the transfer rate in college basketball has more than doubled in the past five years to more than 700 players. One player refuted this by saying, "A lot of kids transfer because they have delusions of grandeur. Nobody transferred from GW with delusions of grandeur. They just transferred because they hated (Lonergan). They couldn't stand another second of him."

It seems like there was some real deep hated for the former head coach, and just like most accusation cases, he believes he was wrongfully terminated. This has all the ingredients to make up a messy situation (as if it isn't already), and this could be something to keep an eye on, especially with the season just a couple of weeks away.