ISN Weekend Sports Preview- What to Watch

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    The team from Canada CAN-1, piloted Kaillie Humphries with brakeman Heather Moyse, cross into the finish area to win the gold medal in the women's bobsled competition at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia.(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

    Over the last decade Kaillie Humphries of Calgary has dominated the women’s bobsled circuit, however it is now time to pay attention to the men. After the first six races on the FIBT World Cup circuit this season, Canadians sit first and second in the standings as pilot Justin Kripps has 1239 points and Chris Spring has 1091 points. Even though Kripps was the World Cup leader after the first five races, he only got his first win last weekend in Altenberg, Germany, after three silver medals. Spring meanwhile will look to bounce back on Saturday in a World Cup in St. Moritz, Switzerland (cbcsports.ca, 5:30 a.m. PT) after only finishing 12th last week in Altenberg. Spring has a gold medal in Whistler and a silver medal in Winterberg on his 2017-18 resume this season.

    Here are the other events I will be watching this weekend:

    Saturday—NBA—Golden State Warriors @ Toronto Raptors—TSN4—4:30pm PT—There is a lot to get excited about the Toronto Raptors this season—especially their depth. On Thursday, the Raptors stunned the Cleveland Cavaliers 133-99 without two key starters—Kyle Lowry and Serge Ibaka. It was a fantastic game for Fred Van Vleet, who had a career high 22 points in only 24 minutes. The Raptors will be in tough Saturday though as the Warriors have the best record in the NBA at 33 wins and nine losses. However, they are coming off a loss as they were beaten 125-106 by the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday.

    Saturday—NHL—Edmonton Oilers @ Vegas Golden Knights—CBC—7pm PT—I think it is time all NHL teams start taking the Vegas Golden Knights very seriously. They have become the biggest story of the 2018 NHL season and are 10 points up on a playoff spot. It has been an outstanding season for Golden Knights center Jon Marchessault of Cap-Rouge, Quebec. After only recording 70 career points and being a poor -31 over his first four seasons in the NHL, Marchessault leads the Golden Knights with 40 points and is a solid +17.

    Sunday—NHL—Calgary Flames @ Carolina Hurricanes—Sportsnet—12pm PT—The red-hot Calgary Flames have a matinee Sunday afternoon in Carolina. The Flames have won five straight games. Their first four games in the winning streak were very close as they won each game by only one goal. Then on Thursday, the Flames broke out with a 5-1 win in Tampa Bay. It was only the Lightning’s fourth regulation loss at home all season long.

    Sunday—Curling—Alberta Women’s Curling Championship—Sportsnet One—3:30pm PT—The best female curlers in Alberta are participating this weekend in Medicine Hat for the provincial championship. The favourite teams are clearly skipped by Chelsea Carey of Calgary and Val Sweeting of Edmonton. However teams skipped by Canadian Olympic bronze medalist Shannon Kleibrink, as well as Laura Crocker, Geri-Lynn Ramsay and Casey Scheidegger should not be counted out.

    Sunday—Australian Open—TSN2—4pm PT—The first grand slam of the 2018 tennis season starts this weekend in Melbourne, Australia. Canada currently has three players in the singles draws—Milos Raonic of Thornhill, Ontario (22nd ranked), reigning Lionel Conacher Award winner Denis Shapovalov of Vaughan, Ontario and Eugenie Bouchard of Montreal, Quebec. Raonic has a first round match against Lukas Lacko of Slovakia, Shapovalov is up against Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece and Bouchard is up against Oceane Dodin of France.

    Sunday—NHL—Vancouver Canucks @ Minnesota Wild—Sportsnet—5pm PT—After a great start to the 2017-18 NHL season, the Vancouver Canucks are now in 14th place in the Western Conference. Yikes! They are also 12 points back of the Minnesota Wild for a playoff spot. The Wild are a much better team at home (14-4-3) than they are on the road (9-13-1), so the Canucks will be in tough. Eric Staal of Thunder Bay, Ontario leads the Wild with 19 goals and 37 points.

     

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