2017-04-20 / Sports

The race is on for Lord Stanley's cherished chalice

Fat Guy Corner
Jeff Day — Sports Columnist

The NHL playoffs have been simply outstanding so far! What is better than the first round of NHL playoff hockey? Absolutely nothing, in my opinion. The games have been so exciting and close it’s must watch television for all hockey fans. The shocker so far is Nashville up 2-0 on the Chicago Blackhawks. Who saw that ice ball being thrown at them? The Minnesota Wild and Columbus Blue Jackets are down 0-3 and will be eliminated and busting out the golf clubs. There were numerous hockey experts who loved the Minnesota hockey club to make it to the Stanley Cup, actually. I find myself pulling for the St. Louis Blues for some unexplainable reason and I can’t put my finger on why that is. The Washington Capitals are in a tough series with the young upstart Toronto Maple Leafs. I guess I can no longer call them the “Maple Laughs.” Coach Mike Babcock has this hockey team on the rise in Toronto where the future looks bright. I love the fact the Edmonton Oilers are back in the playoffs, too. The fans in Edmonton are going bonkers over their Oilers hockey team and I love it. Remember last season where there were zero teams from Canada in the playoffs? This year there are five teams representing Canada. I will be watching until some team raises the Stanley Cup and I can only hope it’s not the Pittsburgh Penguins or Chicago Blackhawks! I have a strong dislike for both those hockey teams, in case you couldn’t tell. Hoops playoffs wasting time

The first round of the NBA playoffs are just the opposite of hockey. The top teams usually eliminate the bottom ones in quick fashion. The middle-seeded games will be good series to watch and the rest are awful to watch. Just wake me up when we get to the Eastern and Western Conference Finals. The first round should be a best-of-five series, not a best-of-seven series. These seven-game series are a total waste of time. It’s all about television and money. The fact they drag out the series to over two weeks is downright tragic, if you want my opinion. Come on, NBA, quit boring us to death with this nonsense.

Letting the cat out of the bag

The NFL schedule is to be released tonight, if the rumor is true. The NFL likes to keep people in the dark for some reason, and I don’t get it. Actually, a tweet by Detroit Lions President Rod Wood let the Motor City cat out of the bag.

The schedule is always a mystery, as we all want to know if our team is on Monday Night Football. The questions begin to fly: Who are the Lions playing on Thanksgiving Day. Is the first game home or away? How tough is the schedule in September and December? When do they get the bye week? I always look to see what games I am going to attend and which ones I want to just sell my tickets and not go. How many tailgates will be in nice weather is a big question, too. I bet Detroit will get more than one home game in September this year, as it has played only one home game last year in September. I think the Thanksgiving Day game will be the Pittsburgh Steelers or the Green Bay Packers. Those are my two guesses. The teams coming to Ford Field in 2017 are Minnesota, Chicago, Green Bay, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Atlanta, Carolina and Arizona. The road games will be: Chicago, Green Bay, Minnesota, New Orleans, New York Giants, Tampa Bay, Baltimore and Cincinnati. The Lions will have their work cut out to improve on last year’s 9-7 record.

The Detroit Lions unveiled new uniforms and the feedback from Lions fans are mixed. Detroit will wear four different types of uniforms in 2017. The grey color rush uniforms, which I actually like and I think are cool. The old throwback from the 1930s, which I really like. I am not a huge fan of the blue pants uniforms, though. The Lions on the sleeve are really not attractive to me, either. Hey, teams, how about we quit worrying about the darned uniforms and worry about winning more games! thefatguy@mihomepaper.com

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