Monday, May 30, 2016

2010 Men's SEC Basketball Tournament: Preview and Prediction - Round Two

The men’s Southeastern Conference basketball tournament begins March 11, 2010, in Nashville, Tennessee; second round (quarter-final) games will be played March 12. Following is a review of the teams playing in the second round and predictions of the potential match-ups.

Game 5: Kentucky v. South Carolina or Alabama

Ranked 2nd in both national polls, Kentucky finished the season with an overall record of 28-2 and a conference record of 15-2. The Wildcats won 19 games before losing to South Carolina by six points, 68-62, in Columbia. Kentucky’s winning streak included a two point victory over North Carolina, 68-66, and a nine point victory over in-state rival Louisville. After defeating Mississippi State by six points, 81-75, in overtime, the Wildcats lost to the Volunteers by the score of 74-65 in Knoxville. Earlier, Kentucky had beaten Tennessee 73-62 in Lexington.

Kentucky has four players who have averaged over 10 points per game: John Wall (16.8), DeMarcus Cousins (15.6), Patrick Patterson (14.9), and Eric Bledsoe (10.4). Cousins also has averaged over 10 rebounds per game; the second best average in the conference. Patterson pulls down another seven. Wall has averaged over six assists per game; the best in the SEC. Count on Cousins to block at least one shot.

Prediction:

Kentucky v. South Carolina – This should be the best of two possible match-ups. Look for Kentucky to win, unless Devan Downey, who leads the SEC in scoring (22.6) and steals (2.8), has an outstanding game and leads South Carolina to an upset.

Kentucky v. Alabama – The Wildcats should duplicate their regular season victory over the Tide.

Game 6: Mississippi v. LSU or Tennessee

After only two non-conference losses, on the road against Villanova and West Virginia, the Rebels lost to in-state conference rival Mississippi State twice, Tennessee in overtime, Arkansas, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, and Florida, before finishing the regular season with four straight wins for an overall record of 21-9 and a conference record of 9-7.

Mississippi has three players who have averaged 10 or more points a game: Chris Warren (17.2), Terrico White (14.4), and Murphy Holloway (10). Eniel Polynice scores 9.8 a game and contributes 4.1 assists. Holloway leads the Rebels in rebounds with 7.6 per game.

Prediction:

Mississippi v. LSU – Mississippi over LSU; this hasn’t been LSU’s year.

Mississippi v. Tennessee – The Rebels will be out to avenge their early season overtime loss to the Volunteers, but look for Tennessee to prevail.

Game 7: Mississippi State v. Auburn or Florida

Mississippi State completed the regular season with an overall record of 21-10 and a conference record of 9-7. The Bulldogs got off to a strong conference start with three wins, including a victory over in-state rival Ole Miss, before dropping two against Alabama and Arkansas. After beating LSU, State lost to Vanderbilt and Florida, and then won two over Mississippi and Auburn, before losing to Kentucky 75-81 in overtime. After Kentucky, the Bulldogs won three in row against LSU, Alabama, and South Carolina, before losing their last two games to Auburn and Tennessee.

Mississippi State has four players who have averaged over 10 points per game: Jarvis Varnado (13.5), Ravern Johnson (13.5), Dee Bost (12.9), and Barry Stewart (11.5). Varnado, who leads the conference in rebounds with 10.6 per game, is second in the nation in blocked shots with 4.8 per game. Bost has averaged 5.4 assists per game; the third best in the SEC.

Prediction:

Mississippi State v. Auburn – Mississippi State, eager to impress NCAA selection officials will be looking to avenge its late regular season loss to Auburn.

Mississippi State v. Florida – As with Auburn, State will be looking to make amends against Florida as well.

Game 8: Vanderbilt v. Georgia or Arkansas

Vanderbilt posted an overall record of 23-7 and a conference record of 12-4, the second best record in the SEC behind Kentucky. Among conference teams, the Commodores lost to Kentucky twice and to Georgia and South Carolina. While Kentucky beat Vanderbilt by 13 points in Lexington, they won by only two points in Nashville. The Commodores nearly lost to Georgia for a second time in Nashville, but instead beat the Bulldogs by the score of 96-94, in overtime. Two decisive victories over instate rival, Tennessee, highlighted Vanderbilt’s season.

Vanderbilt has four players who have averaged over 10 points per game: Jermaine Beal (14.5), Jeffery Taylor (13.9), A.J. Ogilvy (13.9), and John Jenkins (10.6). Ogilvy has averaged over 6 rebounds per game. Vandy has the best three-point shooter in the conference, John Jenkins, who stands 22nd in the nation at .467%.

Prediction:

Vanderbilt v. Georgia – Although Georgia will be looking to upend Vanderbilt; the Commodores have not lost in Nashville all season, and should not this time out.

Vanderbilt v. Arkansas – Vanderbilt beat Arkansas in Fayetteville during the regular season by 17 points; look for a repeat performance in Nashville.

References:

ESPN, Alabama Crimson Tide, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, Arkansas Razorbacks, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, Auburn Tigers, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, Florida Gators, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, Georgia Bulldogs, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, Kentucky Wildcats, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, LSU Tigers, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, Mississippi Rebels, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, Mississippi State Bulldogs, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, South Carolina Gamecocks, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, Tennessee Volunteers, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

ESPN, Vanderbilt Commodores, ESPN Men’s Basketball Website

SEC, 2010 Men’s Basketball Tournament, SEC Sports Official Website

Tags:2010 Men’s SEC Basketball Tournament: Preview and Prediction - Round Two

2010 MLB Playoffs ALDS Prediction: New York Yankees Vs. Minnesota Twins

The New York Yankees have only missed the playoffs once since 1995. The Minnesota Twins have made the playoffs six times over the past nine seasons. The 2010 MLB ALDS features two teams that have become staples in the AL playoffs over the past decade, but only one of these teams can advance to the ALCS.

New York Yankees 2010 MLB NLDS Playoffs Preview

The Yankees led all of baseball in runs scored in 2010, scoring 859 runs over the course of the season (41 more than the second place team, the Boston Red Sox). They also led the majors in run differential, sitting at +166 at season’s end (+13 better than the Tampa Bay Rays). So, the Yankees are a shoe-in to make the World Series, right?

New York’s biggest weakness is their pitching. C.C. Sabathia has been brilliant this season, but behind him the Yankees’ starting rotation is barely treading water. Andy Pettite missed significant time with a groin injury. A.J. Burnett and Javier Vazquez have been inconsistent and, at times, downright awful. Phil Hughes has pitched extremely well, but he’s never logged more than 86 innings in a major league season before this year, when he finished with 176 1/3 innings. Hughes’ strikeout rate dropped steadily through the season, and although he’s a better option than Burnett or Vazquez, Hughes isn’t exactly unbeatable.

Minnesota Twins 2010 MLB NLDS Playoffs Preview

The Minnesota Twins survived the 2010 MLB regular season with what at times amounted to a ragtag group of castoffs. Their best starters were Carl Pavano, who finished with his best full-season ERA since 2004, and Francisco Liriano, who lowered his ERA by over two full points after sporting a 5.80 ERA in 2009 after recovering from arm surgery. Their leader in home runs was Jim Thome, whose career looked like it was winding down after last year’s stint as a pinch hitter for the Los Angeles Dodgers. Former #1 overall draft pick (for the Tampa Bay Rays) Delmon Young led the Twins in RBIs. They also played the entire season without closer Joe Nathan and have not had former MVP Justin Morneau since he suffered a concussion in July. It’s scary to think of how good this team could have been if everyone had stayed healthy.

Yankees vs. Twins Conclusion

The Yankees have a strong offense, but their pitching behind C.C. Sabathia might not be able to hold up. New York ended up with the AL Wild Card (and thus will have not have home field advantage) after going 9-17 over their final 26 games. The Yankees seemed to give up once their place in the playoffs was assured, and although they have a lot more playoff experience on their roster than the Minnesota Twins, it’s tough to see New York flipping a switch and suddenly becoming a top-tier team again after their disastrous September.

2010 MLB NLDS Playoffs Prediction: Minnesota Twins defeat New York Yankees, 3-2

Source(s):

All statistics retrieved from ESPN.com

http://ift.tt/1soqNZr

Tags:2010 MLB Playoffs ALDS Prediction: New York Yankees Vs. Minnesota Twins

2010 Mazda RX-8 Review

The 2010 Mazda RX-8 Sport comes with a choice of six-speed manual or six-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission. Standard equipment includes cloth-trimmed upholstery; air conditioning; AM/FM/CD stereo with six speakers and steering-wheel mounted controls; cruise control; power windows, mirrors and locks; leather-wrapped tilt steering wheel and shift knob; floor and overhead consoles; rear window defroster; variable speed intermittent windshield wipers; alarm with immobilizer; and 225/45R18 tires on alloy wheels. Manual-shift models also get aluminum/rubber pedals, torque-sensing limited-slip differential and a rear lip spoiler.

Engine

RX-8’s rotary engine efficiently performs the four processes of intake, compression, combustion and exhaust. The RENESIS engine is remarkably smooth and high revving all the way to 9,000 rpm and offers a smaller engine footprint than traditional internal combustion engines (some 60 percent smaller and lighter than a comparably powered V-6, and 40 percent smaller and lighter than a four-cylinder). In fact, the packaging and styling that define the RX-8 would not have been possible had Mazda engineers chosen a conventional piston engine.

The rear-wheel-drive 2010 Mazda RX-8 is offered in Sport, Grand Touring and R3 trim levels and is powered by a 212-horsepower, 1.3-liter rotary engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters. Opting for the six-speed manual version bumps output up to 232 horses. The 2010 Mazda RX-8 boasts a standard sport-tuned suspension and EPA estimated fuel economy ratings are 16 mpg in the city and 22-23 on the highway

Exterior

Standard exterior features include 18-inch wheels and performance tires, and a rear lip spoiler available to those who pick the manual transmission. Automatic xenon headlights, fog lights, a sunroof and heated side mirrors with rain-sensing wipers are additional features offered as standard on the Grand Touring trim. The RX-8’s unique “freestyle” four-door design is proof that a true sports car does not need to sacrifice space or convenience for performance. The advanced design of the rear-hinged rear doors, provides a large door opening, allowing adult-sized passengers to easily enter and exit the vehicle.

Interior

Interior, the 2010 Mazda RX-8’s list of standard features includes bucket seats in the front and back split by a full-length center console, a leather wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, air conditioning, and MP3 input jack. The Grand Touring trim adds a rear limited-slip differential, automatic xenon headlights , fog lights, heated side mirrors, rain-sensing wipers, a sunroof, an auto-dimming rear view mirror, and eight-way power driver seat with memory The most interesting feature to the RX-8’s interior is the usable backseat. While it doesn’t offer an extreme amount of interior space like you’d find in an SUV, perhaps, there is enough room for large children or smaller adults to feel comfortable. Cargo space is fairly limited, however, which is something of a problem if you actually planned on using the RX-8’s rear seat to get your family somewhere. The seats do not flip down to give extra trunk capacity, so owners will often find themselves needing to store groceries and other cargo in the backseats. So if you are in the market for a sporty car with good gas mileage, check out the2010 Mazda RX-8.

Tags:2010 Mazda RX-8 Review

2010 Men's NCAA Basketball Tournament: Midwest Region Final - Preview and Prediction

Tennessee (6) v. Michigan State (5)

The number six and number five seed teams in the Midwest Region Final, Tennessee and Michigan State, will play for the Midwest Region title.

Tennessee upset Ohio State 76 – 73 to advance to the Midwest Region Final, and Michigan State defeated Northern Iowa 59-52 to qualify for the Midwest title game. In my preview of these games, I failed to correctly pick the outcome of these games; however, I am Tennessee fan and was extremely glad see the Volunteers win, but did not select them to win because I did not want to be disappointed if they failed.

Tennessee 76 – Ohio State 73

Ohio State had a 13-7 lead over Tennessee early in the first half, before it hit a five minute dry spell, when the Volunteers took the lead at 17-14, their largest of the first half, which ended in the Buckeyes’ favor 42-39. Ohio State seemed to in control of the second half until the last six minutes, when Tennessee tied the score at 62. Again the Buckeyes scoring stalled, and the Volunteers grabbed a five point lead, 68-63, with less than four minutes to play. With two minutes left, Ohio State regained the lead, 70-68, off a three-pointer by David Lighty. A two-point tip by Brian Williams with 35 seconds left put Tennessee into the lead for good, and two successful free-throws by Bobby Maze, with 13 seconds left, iced it for the Volunteers. In the final six seconds, Ohio State’s Evan Turner missed a three-pointer, and then had a two-point jumper blocked by J.P. Prince. Wayne Chism led the Volunteers in scoring with 22 and Brian Williams led in rebounding with 12. Evan Turner led Ohio State in scoring with 31 and in rebounding with 7.

Northern Iowa 52 – Michigan State 59

From the start of the first half, it seemed that Northern Iowa would pull off another upset and advance to the Elite Eight, as it jumped out to 7-0 lead, before Michigan State tied at 12-12. Whereas the Panthers controlled the first half, which ended in their favor 29-22, the Spartans dominated the second, outscoring their opponent, 37-23. Although Northern Iowa closed to within one point, 51-50, with less than three minutes left, it could not overcome Michigan State, which went on to win by seven points. Ali Farokhmanesh, who scored 17 against Nevada-Las Vegas, and 16 against Kansas, scored only nine points against Michigan State, so much for having his picture on the cover of Sports Illustrated.

Prediction: Michigan State has played in the Regional Final 11 times since 1957, winning seven titles. Under coach Mike Izzo, the Spartans have a 5-1 record in the Regional Final. For this reason I will predict Michigan State wins the game, but don’t discount Tennessee, who will be making its first appearance in the Elite Eight, to pull off an upset.

References:

ESPN, Michigan State Spartans, ESPN Men’s Basketball

ESPN, Northern Iowa 52 – Michigan State 59, ESPN Men’s Basketball

ESPN, Northern Iowa Panthers, ESPN Men’s Basketball

ESPN, Ohio State Buckeyes, ESPN Men’s Basketball

ESPN, Tennessee 76 – Ohio State 73, ESPN Men’s Basketball

ESPN, Tennessee Volunteers, ESPN Men’s Basketball

Adam Hornbuckle, 2010 Men’s NCAA Basketball Tournament: Midwest Region Semi-Finals – Preview and Prediction, ESPN Men’s Basketball

Tags:2010 Men’s NCAA Basketball Tournament: Midwest Region Final - Preview and Prediction

2010 NBA All-Star Game Starters

The starters have been selected for the 59thNBA All-Star Game. The All-Star Game is a showcase of the best players from this season. It is played about halfway through the NBA season. In theory, it should put the best players of the court for an exciting match. However, this is not always the case due to the selection process. The starters are selected by the fans. Like many All-Star Games in the past, there has been some controversy about this year’s selections. Currently, the starters for the Eastern Conference are Allen Iverson of the Philadelphia 76ers, Dwayne Wade of the Miami Heat, LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Kevin Garnett of the Boston Celtics and Dwight Howard of the Orlando Magic. For the Western Conference, the starters are Steve Nash of the Phoenix Suns, Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers, Carmelo Anthony of the Denver Nuggets, Tim Duncan of the San Antonio Spurs and Amare Stoudamire of the Phoenix Suns.

For the majority of these names, there is little issue taken, especially when looking over the Western Conference starters. Steve Nash is having a typical season for him with lots of scoring, assists and leading his team to playoff contention in a hotly contested Western Conference. His teammate, Amare Stoudamire, is also having a good season that was expected. Kobe Bryant, a very popular player for the last decade, has been his productive self this season. The same applies to Carmelo Anthony, who has been on the big stage since his college days at Syracuse University. Tim Duncan’s selection is also expected and well-deserved for his consistency this season. All of these selections are appropriate. Perhaps, there is some debate for a few of the positions (e.g. maybe Chris Paul over Steve Nash, Brandon Roy over Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant over Carmelo), but all of these players combine star power and on-court production-they qualify as All-Star starters.

The Eastern Conference starters are much more controversial (fun fact: This year’s Eastern Conference All-Star Starters are the exact same as the 2009 lineup). Dwight Howard is an excellent selection and the best overall center in the Eastern Conference. His popularity soared after his time in the Slum-Dunk Competition. The same applies to Dwayne Wade and LeBron James, who may be the best players at their position as well as the entire league. The controversy starts with Kevin Garnett who selected for the Power Forward position. Garnett has been a top player for the last decade and a half. He undoubtedly helped cause defensive resurgence in Boston. However, his selection as a starter in this year’s All-Star Game is a bit faulty when one looks at the amount of games he missed (11 games halfway through the season) and other possible candidates: Chris Bosh, Gerald Wallace, Josh Smith, and Joakim Noah are all arguably more worthy than Kevin Garnett.

The biggest controversy is the selection of Allen Iverson. While Iverson can still play, his numbers and his team are not spectacular by any metric. His selection results from his popularity from the last decade and a half when he deserved to be selected. Oddly enough, he was on another team at the beginning of the year before retiring after a few games. He came out of retirement after signing with the Philadelphia 76ers in December. Not only are there Guards who are more worthy with their numbers and winning teams, but also have allotted far more playing time.

It is clear the fan voting is broken. Selections like Kevin Garnett and Allen Iverson (as well as the near-selection of Tracy McGrady, who has scored a total of 19 points) show fan voting is heavily skewed towards popularity and not necessarily production. If there is going be changes to make the NBA All-Star Game starters about the best players from the current season, the influence of the fan vote must be lowered. One last point: Allen Iverson is not to be blamed. He was selected and never asked to be. It is not his duty to turn down an invitation to the All-Star Game because of his popularity.

National Basketball Association, “NBA.com 2010 All-Star Game Starting 5.” NBA.com

Tags:2010 NBA All-Star Game Starters

2010 MLS Draft Taking Place Live; Danny Mwanga Taken with #1 Pick

The 2010 MLS Draft is already underway, and the #1 pick was forward Danny Mwanga to the Philadelphia Union. The 2010 MLS Draft will be four full rounds for the 16 MLS teams to all select players which they hope will make a big difference in the coming years. The MLS Draft will take place in reverse order, with the team that has the worst pick going first, followed in order until the best team drafts. 64 players will be taken in the 2010 MLS Draft before everything is said and done, and it looks like the Philadelphia Union will walk away with the best picks, as they have three of the first seven overall picks in the first round.

With the first pick of the 2010 MLS Draft, the Philadelphia Union went with forward Danny Mwanga. They were also able to pick-up midfielder Amobi Okugo with the #6 picks, and forward Jack McIerney with the #7 overall pick. The New York Red Bulls went second in the first round, taking midfielder Tony Tchani, and they were followed by the San Jose Earthquakes who took defender Ike Opara in the hopes of improving their defense.

There were a number of transactions that took place prior to the draft that saw picks go to various different teams. Philadelphia got the sixth pick from Dallas and the seventh pick from D.C. United, Columbus got the eight pick from New England Revolution, FC Dallas got the fifth pick from Toronto, New York got the 14th pick from Houston, Real Salt Lake got the 15th pick from Los Angeles, and Los Angeles got the 16th pick from Real Salt Lake.

The 2010 MLS Draft

First Round

1. Danny Mwanga — F — Philadelphia Union
2. Tony Tchani — M — New York Red Bulls
3. Ike Opara — D — San Jose Earthquakes
4. Teal Bunbury — F — Kansas City Wizards
5. Zach Loyd — M/D — FC Dallas
6. Amobi Okugo — M — Philadelphia Union
7. Jack McInerney — F — Philadelphia Union
8. Dilly Duka — M — Columbus Crew
9. Zach Schilawski — F — New England Revolution
10. Blair Gavin — M — Chivas USA
11. David Estrada — F — Seattle Sounders FC
12. Bright Dike — F — Columbus Crew
13. Corben Bone — M — Chicago Fire
14. Austin da Luz — M — New York Red Bulls
15. Collen Warner — M — Real Salt Lake
16. Michael Stephens — M — Los Angeles Galaxy

Source:

2010 MLS Draft

Tags:2010 MLS Draft Taking Place Live; Danny Mwanga Taken with #1 Pick

2010 NBA Draft Order Rare Win for Wizards, Sixers

The 2010 NBA draft order was determined in the latest NBA lottery. But the NBA draft order 2010 did not go as everyone expected. The Nets threatened the all-time worst record in league history most of the year, while the Timberwolves still almost challenged them for the year’s worst record. Yet neither of them came close to winning the No. 1 pick or even the No. 2. The best of the worst were two teams that weren’t as historically awful, but still reached new lows even by their woeful standards. But with the NBA draft order, the Wizards and Sixers can use John Wall and Evan Turner to get well again.

In spite of the Nets having the most ping-pong balls, they could only place third in the lottery. This left the Wizards and 76ers, whose records were hardly as abysmal, to take the top two picks. For all the suspicion that bad teams tank late to get the most lottery balls, having the worst record isn’t always the best strategy.

As such, the 2010 NBA draft order will be led by the Wizards, as they are widely expected to take Kentucky’s John Wall. The next closest candidate is Evan Turner, who may fall No. 2 to the Sixers instead. Afterward, the Nets, Timberwolves and Kings will make up the top five, although they each had hopes of going higher.

This victory for the Wizards comes after the Gilbert Arenas scandal, and the death of owner Abe Pollin, destroyed their season. After a few years in the playoffs, where they fought Cleveland tooth and nail, the Wizards took giant steps back to the point where they could get the No. 1 pick. But since they led the 2010 NBA draft order, either Wall or Turner can be the franchise’s new face instead of Arenas.

As for the Sixers, their high standing is no less of a surprise or a relief. They too took a giant step backward this year as former Wizards’ coach Eddie Jordan failed miserably with his Princeton offense. Bringing Allen Iverson back didn’t help either, as the Sixers became an afterthought next to the other pro sports contenders in Philadelphia. But if Wall or Turner is drafted by Philadelphia, the Sixers could make a dent in their own city again.

Now that the NBA draft order 2010 is set, the mock draft stage can begin. Wall and Turner are already projected to be in Wizards’ and Sixers’ uniforms, but Derrick Favors, Wesley Johnson, DeMarcus Cousins and others make this a deep draft. Yet given the injuries that struck top picks Greg Odon and Blake Griffin, going No. 1 or No.2 may be a curse.

The winners on the 2010 NBA draft order will have a month to take advantage, as they get to choose their future stars on June 24.

Sources

NBA.com- “2010 NBA draft order”

Yahoo Sports- “After turbulent year, lottery luck for the Wizards”

FanHouse- “NBA Mock Draft 2.0: Snappy Judgment”

Tags:2010 NBA Draft Order Rare Win for Wizards, Sixers

2010 National League MVP Candidates

Lately, the National League MVP race has been more of a race to see who can finish second to Albert Pujols. This is the case once again in 2010 as Pujols continues to set the pace in various offensive categories. It isn’t a blowout, however, as leading 2010 NL MVP candidates include Pujols as well as high-powered outfielders Andre Ethier, Jason Heyward, and Ryan Braun.

Albert Pujols:

A three time winner of the award, Albert Pujols is once again a leading 2010 NL MVP candidate. The best all-around hitter in baseball is once again filling up the stat sheet with a .316 average, 12 home runs, 13 doubles, 39 RBI, and a .430 on-base percentage. Through early June, Pujols is the only qualifying hitter in the NL with an OPS above 1.000.

Andre Ethier:

Dodgers’ outfielder Andre Ethier won his first Silver Slugger in 2009 and is on pace to do much more in 2010. With a .380 average, 11 home runs, and 1.165 OPS, Andre Ethier has been one of the hottest hitters in baseball through the first two months of the season. Despite missing two weeks of the young season with a hand injury, Ethier remains sixth in the NL in RBI with 38 in 34 games played.

Jason Heyward:

Braves’ outfielder Jason Heyward is making a case to become only the third player to win Rookie of the Year and MVP in the same year. The addition of Heyward to the Braves’ offense is a major reason for their move into first place in the NL East. At just 20 years of age, Jason Heyward has the third highest OBP in the league at .410. He has ten home runs and ten doubles in 161 at-bats, driving home 38 runs and scoring 29 of his own. Jason Heyward is a leading 2010 NL MVP candidate.

Ryan Braun:

One of the top 2010 NL MVP candidates is Brewers’ outfielder Ryan Braun who has been one of the league’s best hitters since his rookie year. Braun is third in the National League in batting average at a .318 clip. Braun is second in the NL in runs scored with 39 and his power numbers include eight home runs, 16 doubles, and 33 RBI. He is also fifth with 11 stolen bases and he has yet to be caught stealing.

Joey Votto:

The Cincinnati Reds are in first place in the NL Central and first baseman Joey Votto is leading the way as a 2010 NL MVP candidate. Votto ranks in the top ten in the National League in several offensive categories including batting average (.312), on-base percentage (.408), slugging percentage (.553), and home runs (ten). He has driven home 33 runs through his first 46 games.

Other possible 2010 NL MVP candidates include Jayson Werth and Chase Utley of the Phillies, along with Ryan Zimmerman, Adam Dunn, and Josh Willingham who have the Nationals playing .500 baseball through the first two months of the season.

Tags:2010 National League MVP Candidates

2010 NBA Mock Draft - Top 5 Center Prospects

The top 5 2010 NBA centers have a few well-known names in it from last year’s 2009 Mock Drafts, notably Cole Aldrich, Solomon Alabi, and A.J. Ogilvy. A newcomer to the top 5 list, is Kentucky freshman star, Demarcus Cousins. Cousins is listed second on the top 5 center prospects for the 2010 NBA Mock draft, but there has been significant conjecture on Cousins being taken above Aldrich depending on the final draft order in the lottery.

2010 NBA Mock Draft Top 5 Center Prospects

#1 2010 NBA Mock Draft Center Prospect – Cole Aldrich – Kansas Jayhawks

Cole Aldrich came back for one more year at Kansas in order to pursue another NCAA Tournament championship. He comes in at 6’11” and 245 lbs. Aldrich’s numbers for the regular season were 11.3 ppg, 9.7 ppg, 3.5 bpg, and was 54.3% from the field and just under 70% from the free throw line. His scoring was down a tad from past years, but that was to be expected this season with Kansas adding Xavier Henry to the starting lineup. Look for Aldrich to be picked in the mid-to-late lottery round of the 2010 NBA draft.

#2 2010 NBA Mock Draft Center Prospect – DeMarcus Cousins – Kentucky Wildcats

DeMarcus Cousins has progressed from a projected late first round draft pick to a potential 2010 NBA lottery pick. He comes in at 6’11” and 270 lbs. Cousins number for the regular season were 15.9 ppg, 10.1 rpg, 1.8 bpg, 54.5 % from the field, and 64% from the free throw line. With guard, John Wall projected to be the first pick in the 2010 NBA draft, if Cousins gets drafted second it would be the first time in NBA draft history that two teammates have gone 1-2.

#3 2010 NBA Mock Draft Center Prospect – Solomon Alabi – Florida State Seminoles

Solomon Alabi is projected to be a late lottery to mid-teens NBA draft pick. He is 7’1″ tall and weighs 241 lbs. During his sophomore year, Solomon averaged 11.6 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 2.2 bpg, 54.6% FG, and 80% FT. Alabi has the best free throw shooting percentage of all of the 2010 NBA draft center prospects, and has been the leading scorer for the Seminoles this year.

#4 2010 NBA Mock Draft Center Prospect – A.J. Ogilvy – Vanderbilt Commodores

A.J. Ogilvy finished his third year at Vanderbilt with a 13.9 ppg, 6.2 rpg, and 1.6 bpg average. He comes in at 6’11” and weighs 250 pounds. He shot 73.2% from the free throw line and 51.2% from the field. Ogilvy is projected to be a late first round or early second round draft pick in the 2010 NBA draft.

#5 2010 NBA Mock Draft Center Prospect – Jerome Jordan – Tulsa

Jerome Jordan is another 7 footer and weighs 245 lbs. During his senior season at Tulsa, Jordan has averaged 14.4 ppg, 8.8 rpg, and 3.9 bpg while shooting 52.7 from the field and 69.8% from the charity stripe.

Tags:2010 NBA Mock Draft - Top 5 Center Prospects

2010 NBA Draft Lottery Results

Washington won the 2010 NBA Draft Lottery results today. The 2010 NBA Draft Lottery results were good for three teams, while the remaining 11 teams will just have to rely upon their drafting skills to make sure that they can find some key players in the 2010 NBA Draft Class. The 2010 NBA Draft Lottery was used to help decide which team would have those first three overall picks in the draft, giving every team that didn’t make it into the 2010 NBA Playoffs a chance to get the No. 1 overall pick. Coming into the Lottery, it seemed that John Wall, a phenomenal point guard out of Kentucky, would be the No.1 pick in the 2010 NBA Draft. Now we know which team will have to make that ultimate decision when the draft comes along on June 24th. The 2010 NBA Draft Lottery results were quite good for Washington, Philadelphia, and New Jersey.

The New Jersey Nets had the best chance at getting the No. 1 overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, and were given a 25% chance of getting that first pick. The worst chance belonged to Houston, which only had a 0.5% chance (5 out of 1,000) of getting that No. 1 pick. It’s a fair way to make sure that a team doesn’t just lose all of their games on purpose to get a really nice draft pick each year, and it also potentially rewards teams that have suffered through injuries over the past couple of seasons. Now that we know what the 2010 NBA Draft Order is going to look like, the theories about who will go to what team can start coming out in 2010 NBA mock drafts.

2010_NBA_Draft_Schedule

The Full 2010 NBA Draft Order (Post Lottery)

1. Washington
2. Philadelphia
3. New Jersey
4. Minnesota
5. Sacramento
6. Golden State
7. Detroit
8. L.A. Clippers
9. Utah
10. Indiana
11. New Orleans
12. Memphis
13. Toronto
14. Houston
15. Milwaukee
16. Minnesota
17. Chicago
18. Miami
19. Boston
20. San Antonio
21. Oklahoma City
22. Portland
23. Minnesota
24. Atlanta
25. Memphis
26. Oklahoma City
27. New Jersey
28. Memphis
29. Orlando
30. Washington

Reference:

nba.com

Tags:2010 NBA Draft Lottery Results

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