“Out of Bounds” features all of the sports news you may have missed this week. From the top highlights to culture and politics, this new bi-weekly column will cover all the highs and lows from the last week, plus a look to what’s ahead to make sure you’re all caught up on news from the sports world.
Welcome to the first week of the official Stanley Cup Playoffs! Okay sure, there was the whole round-robin and play-in series that kind-of-but-maybe-not-really were part of the NHL playoffs, but we’re past that now, straight into round one with eight teams each from the Western and Eastern conferences battling it out. Also, if you haven’t yet followed the Carolina Hurricanes (@canes) on Twitter or @nhlhubslife on Instagram, then you’re missing out, because they’re killing it.
But it’s not just the quest for Lord Stanley that’s happening this week. Here’s the overview.
- The first-round draft pick was decided at the end of the play-in round, an event that was statistically improbable and therefore the most 2020 thing to happen. The New York Rangers scooped up the first-round pick. While mock drafts aren’t always right, the prospective first-round pick is Alexis Lafreniere, a left-winger from Rimouski Oceanic in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. Does it hurt me deeply as a begrudging Detroit Red Wings fan that they don’t get the pick even though they desperately need it? Yes. But for Rangers fans, the first-round pick is a pretty good consolation prize to being out of the play-offs.
- If your first NHL game was the round one, game one match between the Columbus Blue Jackets and Tampa Bay Lightning on August 11, then boy, were you in for some spectacular hockey, and a spectacularly long game. The game went into 5OT (aka, five overtime periods), making it the fourth-longest game in NHL history. Jackets goaltender Joonas Korpisalo made 85 saves, the highest single-game total since the 1955–1956 season. CBJ defenseman Seth Jones had 60:06 of ice time, which is the highest single-game total since the 1997–1998 season, which is when ice-time began to be officially tracked. Just for reference, a single NHL game is 60 minutes long. He literally played over a full NHL game in total. Yeah, woah.
- The National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) has begun to publish team rosters for the upcoming season, and while some teams (looking at you, Buffalo Beauts) are still in the process of releasing their rosters, it’s a great time to start looking ahead to next year.
- The 2021–2022 NWHL season will be the first season for the Toronto Six, the NWHL’s newest expansion team. The NWHL has released their season timeline, so get ready for some more great hockey coming up!
- The Buffalo Sabres have chosen to go back to their old team colors , which yes, means a complete jersey and gear change. Will the royal blue hue of the past help them crawl their way out of their downward spiral? I wouldn’t hold my breath if I were a Sabres fan, but maybe.
- It’s clear that the Pittsburgh Penguins have struggled to reach success in the postseason for the past few years. The Penguins have chosen not to renew the contracts of assistant coaches Sergei Gonchar, Jacques Martin, and Mark Recchi, which makes me wonder, are there more changes to come for the organization as part of a solution-finding process for their recent lack of success?
Looking Back: Here’s where you can find in-depth game statistics, scores, and standings for the NHL from this past week.
Looking Ahead: Here’s where you can find information on the upcoming games, matches and events for the NHL.
The NCAA cancelled its winter and spring championships for Divisions II and III. The NCAA Division I Council approved a preseason football model that would begin August 7, although the Big Ten and Pac 12 have both postponed fall sports indefinitely. The SEC, ACC, and Big 12 are still slated to play fall sports, which does include football.
Summer collegiate baseball is back, with some teams opting out of the regional pods. Justin Fields, of the Ohio State Buckeyes, has started a petition online to relaunch the Big Ten college football season, which has already garnered quite a bit of support. Student athlete and college league responses have been varied regarding season postponements and proceeding plans, and, at the moment, there isn’t much clarity or consistency in how each college is approaching the situation.
- U.S. Soccer and a Chicago Public Schools educator joined forces to create and donate 500 masks made out of Men’s and Women’s National team jerseys to frontline workers. Dr. Fauci was seen wearing an Abby Wambach jersey mask!
- You may have seen that the NWSL’s newest expansion team, Los Angeles Angel City, is dedicated to creating a positive and lasting impact on the sports industry and soccer community. The expansion roster hasn’t been released yet, but merch has, and it’s definitely getting me hyped up for next season.
- Kathryn Nesbitt became the first female official to work an MLS final. You go, girl!
- The Portland Timbers won the 2020 MLS is Back tournament this week, in a 2-1 game against Orlando City.
- The MLS resumed regular-season games on July 8. According to MLS Commissioner Don Garber, individual clubs will be allowed to host fans at games in accordance with local government rules.
- The NWSL concluded the NWSL Challenge Cup when the Houston Dash defeated the Chicago Red Stars in the final game on July 26. Which, as a Chicago transplant and die-hard Red Stars fan, was admittedly a little painful for me.
- If you missed out on the NWSL Challenge Cup, you can relive it through a photo essay by Nicole Baxter of Sky Blue FC, which you can find here.
Looking Ahead: Here’s where you can find information on the upcoming games, matches and events for the MLS.
Watching a hockey game without fans is strange, but what about sports that specifically perform for audiences? If you’ve been wondering what the world of ballet will look like in the age of COVID-19, then read this article from Pointe Magazine, which goes in-depth into the ins and outs of pandemic-era dance.
Play has resumed, although several games have been postponed because of positive coronavirus tests on the Miami Marlins and St Louis Cardinals. The road back to MLB baseball has been fraught with disagreements about season length and pay between the MLB and MLB Players Association, but despite the setbacks, baseball is back.
Looking Ahead: Here’s where you can find information on the upcoming games, matches and events for the MLB.
All preseason NFL games have been cancelled. It’s still unclear whether or not regular-season games will start on time and what restrictions will be in place, but the season is expected to begin on Sept. 13, between the Minnesota Vikings and Green Bay Packers at US Bank Stadium.
- George Kittle signed a 5-year extension contract with the San Francisco 49ers, potentially making him the highest-paid tight end in the league. Kittle was the 49ers fifth-round pick in 2017.
- Seahawks player CB Kemah Siverand broke NFL rules attempting to sneak a woman into the team’s hotel. The Seahawks waived the player afterwards.
Both the NBA and WNBA are playing in bubble hubs right now, although each league has their own return to play plan. The NBA began with 13 Western conference teams and nine Eastern Conference teams for eight regular-season games. Just this week the NBA has finished the 16 teams, four round, postseason seeding games, which determine playoff standings. The WNBA has chosen to return for their regular season, which is projected to end on Sept. 12, after which will be a post-season and final.
- Supervisors in Orange County, CA declared that August 24 would be set aside to honor the late Kobe Bryant, as Kobe Bryant Day.
- The NBA suspended Giannis Antetokoumpo from the Bucks’ final seeding game for his head bump on Wizards’ player Mo Wagner. Antetokoumpo is the NBA’s current MVP, and his absence will certainly be missed on the court for the Bucks.
- Odyssey Sims of the Minnesota Lynx returned to the WNBA August 13, four months after giving birth to her son. Once again, moms are superheroes.
- Sylvia Fowles, also of the Minnesota Lynx, will be sidelined indefinitely from a right calf strain, which she sustained in the Aug. 13 game against the Las Vegas Aces.
- Candice Dupree of the Indiana Fever joins Tamika Catchings, Tina Thompson, and Lisa Leslie as the only athletes in WNBA history to reach 6,000 points and 3,000 rebounds in their career.
Here’s where you can find in-depth game statistics, scores, and standings for the NBA from this past week.
Here’s where you can find in-depth game statistics, scores, and standings for the WNBA from this past week.
Here’s where you can find information on the upcoming games, matches and events for the NBA.
Here’s where you can find information on the upcoming games, matches and events for the WNBA.
- 23-year-old Collin Morikawa won the PGA championship. While raising the cup, the lid fell off, in the most relatable moment ever. Don’t feel bad, Collin, we’ve all been there.
- Jenny Sampson began photographing female and nonbinary skateboarders in 2017 along the West Coast. Now, she’s releasing a book of wet-plate portraits of the skaters, titled “Skater Girls,” which you can buy here. You can also check out Sampson’s website, here.
- Tony Hawk is renaming the “mute air/grab” to “the Weddle Grab” in the game Pro Skater, to honor Chris Weddle, the deaf skater who invented the trick.
Some tournaments have returned, while others, like Wimbledon, have been cancelled for this year. You can find a schedule for matches here.
- Bianca Andreescu, the reigning 2019 US Open Tennis Championship champion, will not participate in this year’s tournament, and will not defend her title.
- The Women’s Sports Foundation has scheduled the Women in Sports Live broadcast event via Yahoo! Sports for Wednesday, October 14, at 8 pm ET. The event will benefit the Women’s Sports Foundation’s mission.
- LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers and his voting rights group has partnered with the Los Angeles Dodgers to turn Dodger Stadium into a voting center for the November election.