"Roughing the Passer - A PK Frazier Novel"

My new book, "Offsetting Penalties - A PK Frazier Novel" is the follow-up to "Illegal Procedure" and "Roughing the Passer" and is now available in print and in e-formats at amazon.com, smashwords.com and iBooks. Follow me on twitter @kevinkrest.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

TUESDAY SPORTS MUSINGS: NBA PLAYOFFS UNDERWAY, CAPITALS DOMINATE IN NHL, NEW PGA PRO MAKING A SPLASH

Thunder Squander Chance at Home: Since it's unlikely that the Oklahoma City's dynamic duo of Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant will have a repeat of Monday's horrendous shooting percentages, I still believe that the Thunder will eventually take care of business in their first round series with the Dallas Mavericks. But for a team that has actually been mentioned as a possible finalist in the western conference, their fourth quarter collapse against a clearly over-matched opponent could be troublesome. If they get past Dallas, they'll take a significant step up in class against the San Antonio Spurs, who will no doubt find a way to take advantage of any weaknesses in the Thunder's approach.

Super Steph on the Bench For Game 2: After tweaking his ankle, last season's MVP and leader of the defending champion Golden State Warriors sat out game two of his team's opening round game against the Houston Rockets. It didn't look as if it mattered much to the team that set a record for victories in a season with 73.  Of course, it didn't look like it mattered much to the Rockets either, as defense seems to be a concept they are still attempting to grasp. And for the record, they appear to have a long way to go. The only drama left in this series involves how many games Curry will play and how many contests that the Rockets decide to show up for. My guess on both is one at the most.

Cavaliers Withstand Hot Piston Shooting: In a game that could have gone the other way, the Cleveland Cavaliers used some good ball movement and a strong effort from Kevin Love to hold off a feisty Detroit Piston team that shot almost 52% from three-point range. With Love and Kyrie Irving combining for 59 points, it left Lebron James in a position to distribute the ball, ending up with 22 points and 11 assists. If the Cavs continue to play the way they did on Sunday, it just doesn't appear likely that anyone in the eastern conference will be able to take four games from them. And a rested Cavalier team could be a true threat to anyone out of the west that will probably have to go deeper into series to get advance.

Caps Put a Beat Down on the Flyers: Monday night saw the Philadelphia Flyers come out in inspired fashion and score in the first minute of the game against the Washington Capitals, the winningest team in the regular season. Unfortunately for Flyers, it was their only score of the night and by the time it was mercifully over some two and a half hours later, the Caps had beaten them 6 - 1 to take a commanding 3 - 0 lead in the series. The Flyers tried physical play, they tried finesse, they even turned to downright violence in a late game hit, but nothing worked. As a Caps fan and with their history of playoff disappointment, I'm hesitant to heap too much praise on them, but they sure looked good in the win. With winger Alex Ovechkin scoring and goalie Braden Holtby stopping virtually everything that is shot his way, the Caps are dangerous in almost every phase of the game. I just hope I'm still writing about them in early June.

PGA Tour Rookie DeChambeau Opening Eyes: From his Ben Hogan style cap to his unilength irons, reigning U.S. Amateur champ, NCAA individual champ and Masters low amateur Bryson DeChambeau is beginning to look a lot like Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth. The rookie has seven sponsor exemptions in which to earn enough money to qualify for the PGA tour without having to go to qualifying school for the Web.com tour. His almost $260,000 for a fourth place tie at the RBC Heritage is a nice jumpstart which also qualified him for this week's Valero Texas Open without having to use one of those precious exemptions. The fact that all of his irons are the same length is a curious trait, one that gives him an upright swing on every shot and makes him unique in his look. Will he be able to advance to the PGA Tour this season? Given his success in the past year, I sure wouldn't bet against him.

Don't forget to check out my new book, "Offsetting Penalties - A PK Frazier Novel" and my first two, "Illegal Procedure - A PK Frazier Novel" and "Roughing the Passer - A PK Frazier Novel", available in print and e-formats at Amazon.com, iBooks and SmashwordsTune into www.WPFLRADIO.com at 8:40 am EST every Friday for my Beyond the Commentary segment on "Lou in the Morning" with Lou Vickery and Jonathan McMath.