Football is over, Hockey and Basketball are at their midway points, and baseball has not quite begun. We are in the doldrums of the sports calendar, but don't tell that to New Englanders... because despite the cold spell, things are heating up in the Northeast Corridor.
So, for your reading pleasure, I present you with the latest and greatest news regarding your favorite teams:
The Celtics return to the Hub after a grueling West Coast road trip where they played five games in seven days, going 2-3. While they haven't proved themselves worthy of "contender" status, they are not to be dismissed. They were able to pick up some new talent during their trek, adding depth to their roster in the forms of Jordan Crawford, Terrence Williams, and DJ White. They have also seen improved play from Jeff Green and Courtney Lee. Things don't get much easier for the C's though, as they make a one game pit-stop at home, before heading off to play three tough road games against Philly, Indiana, and OKC.
The Sox Box
Red Sox (3-4: Grapefruit League)
The Red Sox have kicked off Spring Training 2013, and there are several new faces milling around Fenway South. The new Manager and staff have implemented a more structured, less laissez-faire environment in the clubhouse. Combine that with the addition of good character players in Johnny Gomes, Ryan Dempster, Mike Napoli, Joel Hanrahan and Shane Victorino, and this team is much more likeable than the past few editions of the BoSox. Health may become an issue, especially in light of Will Middlebrooks' wrist scare... but expect good (not great) things in Red Sox Nation this season.
Rhode Into March
February is over, and only a few games remain before the conference championships kick off... so, let's see how the Rhody teams stack up...
1. Providence (15-12): Winners of 5 of their last 6, the Friars are getting hot at the right time. While they don't look like a Tourney team, they could definitely do some damage at MSG and in the NIT.
2. Bryant (18-10): Despite some shakiness in the past two weeks, the Bulldogs are the #2 seed in the upcoming NEC tournament. If they build some momentum, they may land in the NCAA for the first time in school history.
3. URI (8-18): Well, this season was a wash... They would need a miracle just to earn the last seed in the A-10 Tourney. However, with much of their core returning next year, the Rams shouldn't be cellar dwellers for long.
4. Brown (10-14): They did beat Providence... but other than that, the Bears were highly unimpressive this season.
Up to the Rask
Although the Bruins are atop the Conference standings, they have also had the easiest schedule so far, having played 3-4 fewer games than most of the league. However, that changes in March, as they play 18 games between now and the end of March. Health, fatigue, and youth may send the Bruins into a tail spin. Not to mention that Tuuka Rask has played in 14 of their 17 games. It should be an interesting month.
The big news out of Foxboro this week involves every New Englander's man-crush: Tom Brady. The 35 year-old QB inked a contract extension that will keep him a Patriot through 2017. The kicker... he traded in overall value for guaranteed dollars, which provided $15 million in cap relief over the next two seasons. This will allow the Patriots to make some off-season moves (Welker, Bowe, Reed?) that could keep the Pats in contention through the remainder of the Brady era.
- Kevin Aherne
For more Wicked Good Sports, join Kevin Aherne and his Looney-Bin Loudmouths every Tuesday at 7PM on Psycho Sports, right here on 990WBOB. Podcast Available On Demand.
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