Clinger’s Corner: All bets should’ve been on


It was an incredible week and weekend for sports, folks! With no more college football to deal with, it was time to leave the work to the professionals and it provided some fine entertainment, to say the least.

In other news, the weather was crazy and I hope that everyone and everything dear to you all is okay.

So, let’s get down to it…this week I will still be talking NFL playoffs and I will get back into a little more on the NBA.

NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE

The Divisional Rounds of the AFC and the NFC were as different as day and night and provided a little something for every football fan.

The Pittsburgh Steelers were at Arrowhead Stadium to square off against the (overrated) Kansas City Chiefs. The weather there was pretty disgusting as well, causing the game time to be pushed to the evening as opposed to it’s original afternoon start time. Although the game featured just two touchdowns from the Chiefs, the Steelers emerged as the victors. But how you may ask? I will tell you how…Le’veon Bell showed the world why he is actually the best running back in the NFL (sorry Zeke and Mr. Johnson). Bell rushed for 170 yards on 30 carries to set up the place kicking machine known as Chris Boswell. Oh yeah, Antonio Brown also had 100+ yards receiving, that helps. Boswell booted six, yes six, field goals to give the Steelers an 18-16 victory over the Chiefs. Boswell’s six field goals now places him in the NFL record books.

New England…home to one of the greatest quarterbacks of all-time (just my opinion people). They had no issues with the visiting Houston Texans in their matchup. If you remember correctly, I stated that Houston was only a playoff team because of their overly weak conference. Well, go up against the best, get beat down. The Patriots handled the Texans easily, 34-16 and (big surprise) move on to the AFC Championship game, in Foxborough, against the Steelers on Sunday Jan. 22 at (supposedly) 6:40 pm.

Fun fact: since 2003, there has only been four different quarterbacks that have represented the AFC Champion in the Super Bowl. Tom Brady has done it five times, Peyton Manning four times and Ben Roethlisberger at three times. In 2012, somehow, the AFC rep was Joe Flacco. This year will mark six times for Brady, as the Patriots defeat the Steelers by 10 points to move on.

The Atlanta Falcons destroyed the Seattle Seahawks and I couldn’t be happier. It is well-known that the Seahawks are my New York Yankees of football. Atlanta’s high-powered offense put up 36 points against the supposed strong defense of Seattle. The Falcons went on to win the game, 36-20. That is all that I am going to say about this matchup.

Now, the game of the century! I can’t recall a time that I have watched a better football game than the Packers versus the Cowboys. This game was everything that I hoped that it would be and I even predicted the correct winner and the right amount of points that they won by. The Cheeseheads are moving on to the NFC Championship game against the dirty birds from Atlanta. Up big early, Green Bay seemed poised to take off with an easy victory; however, the Cowboys had other thoughts. Lead by a rookie running back and a rookie quarterback, Dallas rallied their way back from being down at least 21-3 (I missed some due to cooking dinner) to have it tied up with :03 seconds remaining. Mason Crosby, place kicker for the Pack, had other ideas of the outcome though, kicking not one, but two 50+ yard field goals, including the game winner. Dallas tried to ice Crosby with a called timeout. The ball was snapped and Crosby booted it through the uprights but the Cowboys were rewarded the timeout. Crosby gave the kick another try and as time expired, so did the Dallas season.

Fun fact: the Green Bay Packers have indeed ran the table so far. They won six in a row to win their division. They are now up to eight consecutive wins and will face off against the Falcons, at the Georgia Dome, on Sunday Jan. 22 at 3:05 pm. The Packers will make it nine wins when they defeat Atlanta by a field goal. Yeah, I did it again…

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

I am going to take this small section to be a fanboy.

Love him or hate him, the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook is the MVP so far this year. The kid just has no quit. Kevin Durant left for the Warriors (punk move) and everyone ruled out OKC. Well, Russ is doing everything in his power to keep spirits high.

Westbrook is currently sitting at 20 triple-doubles for the season. Outstanding considering his team has only played 43 games thus far! He became just the third player in NBA history to record 20 or more trip-dubs in a season and the company he joins is quite elite. Oscar Robertson, the only player to average a triple-double for a season (so far), established this feat in five different seasons! The Big O also owns the most triple-doubles during a season (again, so far) with 41. Another player that you may have heard of, Wilt Chamberlin, also had two seasons in which he had 20+ triple-doubles.

Oh yeah, and don’t rule out James Harden of the Houston Rockets. Harden has 12 trip-dubs this season himself, which is to say that he will more than likely join the grouping listed above.

Fun fact: Russ has 20, Harden has 12 and the rest of the NBA combined has 18 triple-doubles…according to www.sportingcharts.com, “this exceptional feat occurs roughly 35 times a season or 1 in every 36 games”. It would appear the numbers are a bit askew this season…

UCONN WOMEN’S BASKETBALL

You did it ladies, congratulations! Have you been keeping track? I have! The Huskies have now beat their own record of 90 wins in a row and are sitting at 91 and counting! Remarkable and keep it up ladies…the most impressive college basketball program, men’s or women’s, ever (yeah, take that old school UCLA teams)!

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By Chad Clinger

cclinger@civitasmedia.com

 

Find Chad on Twitter @GalionSportsGuy

Reach Chad at 419-468-1117 x2048