The Los Angeles Kings are one win away from capturing their very first Stanley Cup. On Saturday night the Kings will play the New Jersey Devils (CBC, 6pm) leading the Finals 3-1.
The Devils meanwhile are taking a game-by-game approach according to all-star goaltender Martin Brodeur. In game four, the Devils had a solid third period and stayed alive with a 3-1 win. For the Devils to make the Stanley Cup Finals interesting, they will need a solid performance from Ilya Kovalchuk, who only has one goal in four games so far, and that one went into an empty net.
The Kings are getting great production from Drew Doughty, who leads all blueliners with 14 playof points.
One player though nobody is talking about is New Jersey’s defenceman Bryce Salvador who has 13 points. Just how unexpected has Salvador’s point production been? Well his NHL regular season career high came in 2009 when he had 16 points in 76 games!
Here are the other events I’ll be watching this weekend:
Saturday–WTA–Women’s French Open Final–(2) Maria Sharapova–RUS vs. (21) Sara Errani–ITA–NBC–7am–Maria Sharapova, now ranked number one in the world after her victory over Petra Kvitova in the semi-finals on Thursday, has reportedly said she will not take Errani lightly. I think that was the same mistake U.S. Open champion Samantha Stosur made in her semi-final. Despite both being veterans on tour, and having a combined total of 739 wins, this will be their first head-to-head meeting.
Saturday–Euro 2012 Soccer–Denmark vs. Netherlands–TSN2–10am–The country nobody is talking about in Group B is in fact Denmark. The Danes could surprise many however in trying to prove their number nine world ranking is no fluke. They will be led by Sunderland’s Nicklas Bendtner, who had eight goals in 29 games played. Netherlands meanwhile were the 2010 World Cup finalists. The Dutch might just have the most talented midfield in the tournament, led by Inter Milan’s Wesley Sneijder and Bayern Munich’s Arjen Robben.
Saturday–Euro 2012 Soccer–Germany vs. Portugal–TSN–12:45pm–The Germans are considered by many to be the pre-tournament favourite, but they will have to get out of the most difficult division in the tournament first. All teams in Group B are ranked in the top ten in the world, with the Germans third, the Dutch fourth, Denmark ninth and Portugal tenth. The Portugese may not have the best team in the group, but Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo is the best player.
Saturday–Equestrian–CN Reliability Grand Prix–CBC–2pm–In one of the most significant equestrian events for the Canadian team before the 2012 Olympic Games in London, the Canadians, led by Eric Lamaze and Ian Millar, will be in tough against a strong American team led by two-time Olympic Gold medallist Beezie Madden and World Cup Champion Rich Fellers.
Saturday–NBA–Game 7 Eastern Conference Final–Boston Celtics @ Miami Heat–TSN–6:30pm–The Heat got back into the series with an overwhelming win Thursday in Boston. For the Celtics to win, they will need better production from point guard Rajon Rondo. Despite a double double in game six (21 points and 10 assists), Rondo was a -25. Paul Pierce also struggled mightily as he only had nine points (four for 18) and was a -20. LeBron James is nicknamed the King for a reason. He was 19 for 26 in game six, but will need to be better from the free throw line where he was only 5 for 9.
Sunday–ATP–Men’s French Open Final–(1) Novak Djokovic–SRB vs. (2) Rafael Nadal–ESP–NBC–7am–Don’t pay a second in looking at the rankings because Rafael Nadal is the best player ever on clay. Still this has the makings of being an historic classic. Djokovic is trying to hold every grand slam title at the same time, while Nadal is trying to win his seventh French Open. Unlike Errani and Sharapova who have never played each other, Nadal and Djokovic have played against each other 32 times with Nadal having the 18-14 advantage.
Sunday–Euro 2012 Soccer–Spain vs. Italy–TSN–10am–Two of the richest soccer nations in the world will battle for what will probably be top spot in Group C. Team Spain will be led by striker Fernando Torres of Chelsea and midfielder David Silva of Manchester City. The Italians meanwhile will count heavily on midfielder Daniele De Rossi of AS Roma.
Sunday–MLB–Toronto Blue Jays @ Atlanta Braves–Sportsnet–11:30am–The Blue Jays will finish a three game series in Atlanta in a rematch of the 1992 World Series. In the opener Friday night, the Braves won in extra innings 4-3, after Blue Jays catcher J.P. Arencibia overthrew third base, allowing Jason Heyward to score. The Braves are the hottest team in baseball at the moment as they have won five straight.
Sunday–Euro 2012 Soccer–Ireland vs. Croatia–TSN–12:45pm–In what is expected to be a battle of the two worst teams in Pool C, Irish captain Robbie Keane of the Los Angeles Galaxy has 53 career goals in 117 international games. Still, at 31 years of age, Keane will have a tough time showing the world he hasn’t lost the speed he had in his prime. The Croats meawhile are ranked eighth in the world, but expect them to get their lone group victory against the Irish.
Sunday–LPGA Championship-Golf Channel–3pm–The second major of the season takes place this weekend just outside of Rochester, New York. Three-time LPGA Champion Se Ri Pak of South Korea is at -3 and leads fellow Korean Inbee Park, Japan’s Mika Miyazato, Germany’s Sandra Gal and American Paula Creamer by a stroke.
Tags: arjen robben, atlanta braves, beezie madden, bob bryan, boston celtics, bryce salvador, cristiano ronaldo, daniel nestor, daniele de rossi, david silva, drew doughty, eric lamaze, fernndo torres, french open, ian millar, ilya kovalchuk, inbee park, jason heyward, john mcenroe, LeBron James, los angeles kings, lpga championship, maria sharapov, martin brodeur, max mirnyi, Miami Heat, mika miyazato, mike bryan, new jersey devils, nicklas bendtner, novak djokovic, paula creamer, RAFAEL NADAL, rajon rondo, rich fellers, robbie keane, sandra gal, sara errani, se ri pak, spruce meadows, stanley cup finals, toronto blue jays, wesley sneijder