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This Week in Sports Talk: March 1, 2020

this week in sports talk news March 1 2020

This Week in Sports Talk (TWIST) is our weekly roundup of top headlines and sports news, plus a preview of what’s up next. Heading into the week of March 1, 2020, here’s the top sports news, with a twist. Skim it, and you’ll be good to go all week.

This Week in Sports Talk: March 1, 2020

Has March blown in like a lion or lamb where you are? Here at our HQ, it’s more ovine than leonine. At least so far. Heading into the week of March 1, 2020, as we launch into a new month, we begin with some short takes in sports news. 

Countdown to Opening Day

Major League Baseball Opening Day is March 26th – the earliest start date ever. And for the third consecutive year, all 30 teams will play that day. Get your tickets now.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

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March Madness is almost upon us

The NCAA men’s basketball tournament is nearly here – Selection Sunday is March 15th, at which time the full field of 68 teams will be announced. This year, there are no real break-out stars or teams heading into the Big Dance. Which may set the stage for a new star or two to be born.

top of the charts and top seeded team

JaVale McGee is a true polymath: the LA Lakers player – who has long had a side hustle as musician – is a contributor to the number one album in the country and a member of the top-seeded team in the NBA’s Western Conference. His track, “Available,” is on Justin Beiber’s latest album, “Changes.”

LA Lakers LeBron James and JaVale McGee. Courtesy Photo.

Maria Sharapova retires

At age 32, after 19 years as a pro, tennis player Maria Sharapova has announced her retirement from the sport. She won five Grand Slam singles titles, but was suspended for use of a banned substance in 2016. Noteworthy for her ongoing animosity toward fellow player Serena Williams, according to Forbes, Sharapova was the world’s highest-earning female athlete for 11 consecutive years. She joins Caroline Wozniacki, 29, who retired from the sport earlier this year.

Top Sports Headlines heading into the week of March 1, 2020

Now that we’re warmed up, here’s everything else you need to know about sports heading into the week of March 1, 2020:

1. NFL

Must Know:

The NFL Combine has been underway all week in Indianapolis – that’s the forum where college players participate in drills and feats of strength so that teams can assess their skills prior to the draft. Arizona State’s punter Michael Turk made news when he completed 25 reps of 225 pounds on the bench-press. That was more than any of the wide receivers, and was matched by only one tight end.

this week in sports talk March 1 2020

Punter Michael Turk at the NFL Combine ’20. Photo Credit: New York Times.

Clemson’s Isaiah Simmons lived up to his billing as one of the draft’s best linebackers in years, clocking a 4.39 second 40-yard dash and winning the broad jump competition.

Tua Tagovailoa. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

All eyes are on top quarterback prospects Joe Burrow and Tua Tagovailoa. In happy news, Tagovailoa received overwhelmingly positive reports on his dislocated hip from the teams who examined him. The significant hip injury abruptly ended his college career and has kept him off the field at the Combine.

Joe Burrow. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Burrow is still expected to be the first draft pick, and has said that if the Cincinnati Bengals (who have the top pick) draft him, he’d be happy to play there.

Nice to Know:

For those on Tom Brady Watch, here’s the latest. On Thursday, ESPN’s Jeff Darlington reported that Brady and the Patriots still haven’t spoken about a new contract. And that Brady is “currently operating under the belief that he will enter free agency to play somewhere other than New England next season.”

Meanwhile, at a Syracuse-North Carolina men’s basketball game last night, Brady, Jimmy Fallon and Julian Edelman were spotted in the stands. As the cameras turned to them, Edelman said “He’s coming back!”

Head fake, negotiating tactic, truth? Who knows? Watch this space for further updates.

Extra Credit:

The NFL Players Association has sent the new proposed collective bargaining agreement (CBA) to all players for a vote. Every member of the players’ union gets to vote on the CBA, and a simple majority is needed for it to pass. Several high-profile players – including Aaron Rogers, JJ Watt and Russell Wilson – have stated their opposition to the agreement, which would extend the season by one week and include additional teams in the playoffs. But lesser-known players are keen on the pay raise in the proposal, and may vote yes. 

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2. NBA

Must Know:

The NBA standings remain remarkably unchanged for the past 3 months or so: in the East, the Milwaukee Bucks and Toronto Raptors lead. And the New York Knicks and Atlanta Hawks are at the bottom. In the West, the LA Lakers lead and the Golden State Warriors are in the cellar.

Nice to Know:

On Tuesday LeBron James and the Lakers played host to Zion Williamson’s Staples Center debut. It was the first time King James squared off against the Pelicans’ rookie phenom, whose accomplishments have been compared to those James delivered when he entered the league in 2003. The Lakers won 118-109, and James had a season-high 40 points. Afterward, he had kind words for Zion, saying “The kid’s special, and they’ve got a good one in him.” Williamson reciprocated James’ praise, describing the four-time MVP as “an incredible player.”Nice.

In the past day or so there’s been chatter that the two don’t actually get alongto which we say, as Billie Eilish would, duh. Who would want to spend their time being constantly compared to someone else? We can’t blame them for wanting to change the subject. The two teams meet again tonight in New Orleans. 

LeBron James and Zion Williamson in their first matchup.

Extra credit:

In a run of bad luck, Philadelphia 76’ers star Joel Embiid suffered a sprained shoulder in the first quarter of a game this week against the Cleveland Cavaliers. His teammate Ben Simmons was already out for at least 2 weeks. Embiid leads the 76’ers in scoring and rebounding, so his loss for any extended period of time would be a massive blow to the team.

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3. And in other sports . . . 


The New York Yankees are plagued by injuries again, and the season hasn’t even kicked off yet. The team announced that pitcher Luis Severino was heading for Tommy John surgery and would miss the entire 2020 season (and possibly some of 2021, too). Then Giancarlo Stanton suffered a calf strain while doing routine fielding drills, and the injury puts his status for Opening Day in doubt.

Slugger Aaron Judge is being watched day-to-day for injuries, as well. Our Sports Desk opines that these well-muscled gents seem to be highly susceptible to muscle pulls, tweaks, and strains. Perhaps it’s the result of excessive weight training? Whatever the cause, the Yankees were the most injured team in baseball last year.


The trading deadline for the NHL was this week. The Rangers had Chris Kreider on the trading block, but ultimately signed him to a 7-year extension (much to the relief of Ranger fans, as the team is on a roll during its rebuild).

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Coronavirus Watch:

As world health officials monitor the global spread of the COVID-19 virus, the impact of the coronavirus in the world of sports is starting to be felt. A cycling race in Europe was cancelled when 2 riders tested positive for the virus. The big question for most is the Tokyo Olympics. It’s unclear whether or not the Games can proceed as planned. Officials say that the Olympics cannot be postponed or moved, due to the logistical challenges that would be involved. So the only decision is whether to hold them or cancel them. A decision must be made by May.

This Week in Sports News March 1, 2020

That’s it. You’re good to go with the top headlines and coming attractions heading into the week of March 1, 2020. Have a good one, and see you next week.

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For access to insider ideas and information on the world of luxury, sign up for our Dandelion Chandelier newsletter here. And see luxury in a new light.

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