From the ice to the hardwood, what to watch
NCAA women's basketball: Pat Summitt and No. 6 Tennessee are ready take on Brittney Griner and No. 3 Baylor in their first trip of the season to the Ferrell Center in Waco, Texas. The matchup will feature two 9-1 teams, both storied programs with nine NCAA championships between them (8 to 1 in favor of Tennessee) and one of the best shot-blockers in the women's game. If those stats don't do it for you, maybe 10,000 coach Kim Mulkey bobbleheads will. This is indeed a clash of the titans.
The Lady Bears are coming off a six-game win streak with 6-foot-8 Griner at the center of it all. Griner dominates the paint, leading the Big 12 in scoring (22.9) and is tied for first in the nation for blocked shots (5.2 ppg). The last time the two teams met, in last year's NCAA Sweet Sixteen, Griner embarrassed the Lady Vols with a dominating 27-point performance in a 77-62 loss. Tennessee has been waiting for revenge ever since.
From the tip, the Lady Vols' firepower will come from freshman Meghan Simmons, who leads Tennessee in scoring (16.9 ppg) and is the team's top motivator. But determination isn't enough to guard Griner in the post. It's up to an ailing Tennessee post squad to contain a streaking Griner. This game will be won or lost in the paint.
NBA: Fresh off a trip to see the Commander in Chief, the Los Angeles Lakers look to finish off the Washington Wizards in their second and last regular-season meeting. Last time the two teams met, the Wizards put up a good fight in the fourth quarter but it was the champs who got away with the 115-108 win. The Lakers are coming off a lackluster performance over the lowly New Jersey Nets. In order to gain that championship swagger back, the Lakers need to drop a struggling Wizards team, and drop them hard. It shouldn't be tough, given that John Wall will be out tonight with knee soreness. The rookie star has already missed seven of the Wizards' 22 games this season. Look for Nick Young and Gilbert Arenas to step up in Wall's absence.
NHL: Who doesn't love an in-state rivalry match on the ice? This one is a goodie, as the Penguins come in with a 12-game win streak and captain Sidney Crosby on an 18-game point run. Crosby could match his career-best scoring streak (19) tonight. Pittsburgh also hasn't lost on the road in over a month. The Flyers, who have lost just one game in regulation in the last 11, look to dethrone the Penguins from the top spot in the Eastern Conference with a win tonight. This game could go either way. All I know is somebody had better past me a cheese steak. This is going to be good.