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Yankees Begin American League Division Series Tonight

October 05, 2020
SOURCE: HARRY HOW/GETTY IMAGES
SOURCE: HARRY HOW/GETTY IMAGES

The GIST: It’s about as dramatic as an episode of KUWTK this week in New York sports. The Giants ended their game in a brawl, and the Yankees are set to face rival Tampa Bay Rays in the American League Division Series.

It’s drama: While the touchdown-less G-men were mostly a dull watch in their loss to the Rams yesterday, things heated up at the end of the game when Giants receiver Golden Tate and Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey threw punches and had to be separated by teammates and coaches. Yikes.

  • Between aggressive plays earlier in the game and these players’ personal history, the tension bubbled over. While it remains to be seen if either player will face any repercussions, this is not what you want to see from either side.

The tension is rising: After a high-scoring sweep of Cleveland in the Wild Card Series, the Yankees will take on the Rays in the ALDS starting tonight at 8 p.m. ET. These teams have some history on and off the field, so expect a great matchup. The Rays have struggled with striking out but have solid pitchers, while the Yanks have hot-hitters but issues with their relievers. Will the pinstripes take down Los Rayos for good? Here’s hoping.

Nothing in the net: Sky Blue FC fell to the Washington Spirit 1–0 on Saturday, dropping to 1-2 in the NWSL Fall Series. Despite a scoreless outing, midfielder Jennifer Cudjoe kept the pressure on the Spirit, forcing a shot on goal in an attempt at an equalizer. The squad returns Saturday against the Chicago Red Stars at 12:30 p.m. ET.

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Spirit Win is Highlight in DC

October 05, 2020
SOURCE: WASHINGTON NFL/TWITTER
SOURCE: WASHINGTON NFL/TWITTER

The GIST: The Spirit’s win was the highlight of the District, as the Washington Football Team (WFT) and D.C. United were both outmatched this weekend. Cue spirit fingers.

Growing pains: Another week, another loss for WFT. Second-year QB Dwayne Haskins had a better showing, but there’s still room for improvement as the WFT unsurprisingly fell to Lamar Jackson’s Baltimore Ravens 31–17. A bright spot? WFT rookie running back Antonio Gibson delivered his best game yet. We’ll take it!

  • The WFT surprised head coach Ron Rivera — who is undergoing cancer treatment and was visibly struggling on the sideline during yesterday’s game — with over 400 cardboard cutouts of his family, friends and colleagues in the stands at FedEx Field. We’re not crying, you’re crying.

Jumping for joy: There’s not a lot to say about D.C. United's dreadful 4–0 loss to Atlanta United, so we're choosing to bask in the glory of the Spirit finishing their NWSL Fall Series on a high note. Thanks to a fun goal (and the cutest celebration) from forward Kumi Yokoyama, the Spirit defeated Sky Blue FC (FC stands for football club) 1–0. Until next year.

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LA Playoffs Hopes Lie With Dodgers, Lakers

October 05, 2020
Source: ESPN Stats & Info/Twitter
Source: ESPN Stats & Info/Twitter

The GIST: With the Lakers letting the Miami Heat back into the NBA Finals and our football teams giving subpar efforts, we’re relying on the Dodgers to lift our spirits.

Eyes on the prize: Yesterday in Game 3’s loss to Miami, the Lakers couldn’t overcome 10 first-quarter turnovers. Jimmy Butler’s short-handed Miami squad kept the Lakers on their toes. Kyle Kuzma and Markieff Morris came up big off the bench, but overall, the Lakers left us hanging.

  • Anthony Davis must stay out of foul trouble and help the Lakers grab a v. important Game 4 win tomorrow at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.

Came in like a wrecking ball: After a dazzling start, the Chargers lost to the Tompa Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Worse than the Charger defense’s second-half breakdown was seeing running back Austin Ekeler suffer a serious hamstring injury. And despite brilliant moments, rookie QB Justin Herbert’s three starts have corresponded to three-straight losses for the Bolts. Sigh.

  • The Rams beat the New York Giants yesterday, but the still-winless Giants hung around way too long before wide receiver Cooper Kupp’s touchdown and Darious Williams’ interception put the game away for good. And that messy post-game brawl...Rams, WYD.

SoCal showdown in Texas: After dispatching the Milwaukee Brewers in the Wild Card series, the Dodgers face the San Diego Padres in the NLDS. The Padres aren't the Dads of the past — but they could be without their top two pitchers, so we think (knock on wood) the Dodgers are in a good place.

  • Even with blister concerns, Dodger pitcher Walker Buehler will be the Game 1 starter. First pitch is tomorrow at 9:38 p.m. ET/6:38 p.m. PT. Rise up, LA.
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Cubs, White Sox Eliminated; Bears Take First Loss This Season

October 05, 2020
SOURCE: CHARLES REX ARBOGAST/AP
SOURCE: CHARLES REX ARBOGAST/AP

The GIST: In our feelings this morning as neither the Cubs nor the White Sox are still on to watch in playoff baseball and the Bears took their first loss of the season. Sigh.

Crash and burn: After poor Wild Card series showings, both Chicago teams are out of the MLB playoffs. Welp. The Cubs went 0-2 against the Miami Marlins while the White Sox lost 2-1 to the Oakland Athletics. After an impressive regular season, the Sox struggled from the pitcher’s mound in Game 3 and will have to address their shallow reliever roster in the offseason.

  • While the Cubs have made the playoffs five out of the last six seasons, the 2016 World Series champs have struggled to find that spark again. Scoring only one run in their two losses to the Marlins, the North Sider’s hitting issues need to be addressed moving forward. We’ll throw this out with the rest of 2020.

The defense won: After an outstanding save-the-game performance last week, QB Nick Foles started for the Bears but just couldn’t pull off a win. He was 26-for-42 with an interception 26 yards from the end zone. Rough.

  • We can’t lay all the blame on Foles, though. The Colts’ best-in-the-league defense kept the Bears from scoring a touchdown until late in the fourth quarter. Here’s hoping Foles still has Tom Brady’s number when da Bears play the Bucs on Thursday Night Football.

🏈Cam Newton Tests Positive for COVID-19, Patriots/Chiefs Game Postponed

October 05, 2020
SOURCE: CAM NEWTON/INSTAGRAM
SOURCE: CAM NEWTON/INSTAGRAM

The GIST: The NFL’s Week 4 kicked off with the most high-profile Patriot contracting COVID-19...and no, we’re not talking about the president.

Who?: New England Patriots quarterback (QB) Cam Newton. His results were reported on Saturday morning, and Newton acknowledged the diagnosis with an Instagram post yesterday. Fortunately, none of his teammates or Patriots staff have tested positive.

  • Given Newton’s positive test, the NFL postponed New England’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs, which was originally scheduled for yesterday at 4 p.m. ET, to tonight at 7:05 p.m. ET, pending Kansas City test results. Seems like a quick turnaround, no?

Are any other teams affected?: Since Thursday, the Tennessee Titans racked up more positive results, pushing the team’s total count to 20: 10 players and 10 team personnel. Their Week 4 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers was originally going to be rescheduled to today or tomorrow but has since been pushed to Week 7.

  • The Titans have given the NFL a few things to think about: the league is considering extending the season by a week on the seemingly inevitable outcome that other games will need to be rescheduled. And, along with the NFL Players Association, the league is looking to investigate the Titans for any possible COVID-19 rule violations.

Interesting. Any on-field news?: You bet! In case you haven’t made it to the salon in a while (same!), here are some Week 4 highlights and lowlights for you:

  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Tom Brady (that’s still weird to see, right?) was in his usual GOAT form yesterday. He threw five touchdowns (TDs) on his way to a 38–31 win over the LA Chargers.
  • We can’t pick our favorite Odell Beckham Jr. highlight, so here are two: in a trick play to open the score against the Dallas Cowboys, the Cleveland Browns wide receiver (WR) caught a 37-yard TD pass from his fellow WR Jarvis Landry and then saved a near-loss of yards to score his third TD of the day. The Browns, obviously, won 49–38.
  • Call us unconventional, but we don’t love fighting in football, especially when it involves a family feud. We’re not sure who won this scrap between the LA Rams and New York Giants (uh, no one?), but the Rams won the game 17–9.