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Canucks look to 'embrace the moment' in win-or-go-home Game 5 against Knights –



After making it look easy early on, the Vancouver Canucks are now learning how hard winning can be in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

A young Vancouver team with 10 players appearing in their first NHL playoffs sailed through the first two rounds of the postseason but now finds itself on the verge of elimination. A 5-3 loss to the Vegas Golden Knights Sunday left the Canucks trailing 3-1 in the best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal.

Vancouver’s season would end with a loss Tuesday night at Rogers Place in Edmonton.

“It’s unchartered territory for a lot of players, a lot of young guys on the team,” said veteran winger J.T. Miller, who assisted on all three Canuck goals Sunday. “We just have to worry about the next game.

“We’ve proven we can play with these guys for a long stretch in the first four games.”

WATCH | CBC Sports’ Rob Pizzo recaps Sunday in the NHL playoffs:

In his daily recap, Rob Pizzo breaks down three teams looking to take a stranglehold on their playoff series.  2:52

The Canucks were saying all the right things heading into Game 5. They talked about focusing on the game at hand, refusing to be intimidated by the situation, playing their game.

“You can’t go into this game gripping your stick too tight,” said captain Bo Horvat, who leads the playoffs with nine goals. “You have to play the game, embrace the moment and everything is going to fall into place.

“The minute you start overthinking things, that’s when it goes the opposite way.”

The Canucks are facing an experienced Vegas team that has shown more speed, strength and depth.

Vancouver blew a chance to even the series Sunday. The Canucks battled back from an early 1-0 deficit to lead 3-2 heading into the third period before allowing three goals in 5:37.

“We put ourselves in a hell of a spot to win a hockey game [and] get right back in the series,” Miller said. “We need to do a better job.”

Accustomed to adversity

Vancouver lost to Minnesota in the opening game of the best-of-five play-in series, then won three straight. In the next round, against the defending Stanley Cup champion St. Louis Blues, the Canucks won the first two, lost in back-to-back games, then won the series in six games.

The Canucks have played well for stretches against Vegas but have been unable to sustain pressure.

Vancouver’s power play scored twice on five attempts Sunday but were two-for-11 in the previous three games.

After getting plenty of support from the third and fourth lines against the Blues, none of the Canucks’ bottom six forwards have registered a point against the Knights.

“Good teams have depth and they find scoring throughout their lineup,” head coach Travis Green said. “I’m not going to start putting pressure on certain guys to score.

“You win and lose as a team.”

WATCH | NHL players band together to combat racism:

Before the NHL resumed action after a 2-day postponement in support of protests against police shootings, a video was played reinforcing the league’s statement that Black Lives Matter. 3:02

Goaltender Jacob Markstrom has been Vancouver’s best player most nights. He leads the playoffs with 491 shots faced and 451 saves but may be feeling the fatigue of having played more minutes (841.11).

“I felt great,” Markstrom snapped after Sunday’s loss.

The Canucks have received outstanding performances from Elias Pettersson, the league’s top rookie last year, who is second in playoff scoring with 17 points (six goals, 11 assists). Defenceman Quinn Hughes, a nominee for this year’s Calder Trophy, is tied for scoring among rookies with 13 points, including 12 assists.

‘No team is going away lightly’

The Knights know a series isn’t over until a team wins the fourth game. Last year Vegas led the San Jose Sharks 3-1 in the opening round of the playoffs only to lose Game 7 in overtime.

“No team is going to go away lightly,” said head coach Peter DeBoer who coached the Sharks last year. “We are going to need our best game in order to beat them.

“Eliminating a team is always the toughest. You have to go in prepared for that and with the right amount of attention to detail and desperation level in your game in order to send a team home.”

Horvat said if the Canucks want to live to fight another day they must use their forecheck to contain Vegas’ offence.

“We have to get on them quick and delay their breakouts, spend more time in their end,” he said. “If we play good defensively, take care of our own net first, the offence just takes care of itself.

“We know it’s a do-or-die situation. Leave it all out there. We have nothing to save it for.”

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Lakers Considered Heavy Favorites By Oddsmakers To Win Finals –



The Los Angeles Lakers are heavy favorites to win the Finals against the Miami Heat with BetOnline posting them at -350

The Lakers are nearly 78 percent likely to win the series, according to the implied odds. Miami is at +280 as the underdogs.

The Lakers are generally considered the NBA’s most public team in terms of gamblers. 

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Sportsnet announces broadcast schedule for first two days of MLB playoffs –



The expanded MLB playoff format created a wild race to the finish but now that the dust is settled, the wild card round matchups are now set.

The 2020 season, already unique due to the COVID-19 pandemic delaying the start of play, will feature 16 teams instead of the usual 10 and begin with eight best-of-three series. All three games in each series will be played on consecutive days and be hosted by the team with the higher seed, with one playing eight, two playing seven and so on.

The wild card matchups are as follows:

American League
Tampa Bay Rays (1) vs. Toronto Blue Jays (8)
Oakland Athletics (2) vs. Chicago White Sox (7)
Minnesota Twins (3) vs. Houston Astros (6)
Cleveland Indians (4) vs. New York Yankees (5)

National League
Los Angeles Dodgers (1) vs. Milwaukee Brewers (8)
Atlanta Braves (2) vs. Cincinnati Reds (7)
Chicago Cubs (3) vs. Miami Marlins (6)
San Diego Padres (4) vs. St. Louis Cardinals (5)

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Blue Jays Newsletter

All games involving the Blue Jays can be seen exclusively on Sportsnet and SN Now. Coverage of Game 1 between the Blue Jays and Rays will begin at 4 p.m. ET/ 1 p.m. PT with a special one-hour Blue Jays Central pre-game show before first pitch at 5 p.m. ET/ 2 p.m. PT. Coverage of Game 2 will begin at 3:30 p.m. ET/ 12:30 p.m. PT with first pitch at 4 p.m. ET/ 1 p.m. PT.

Former Blue Jays pitcher John Axford joins Sportsnet’s Jamie Campbell and Pat Tabler for the special one-hour Blue Jays Central pre-game show, featuring a musical opening by The Arkells and a video essay from Stephen Brunt that explores the Blue Jays extraordinary 2020 season.

After the wild card round, the playoffs will continue in the traditional format with the best-of-five division series, best-of-seven league championship round and best-of-seven World Series.

The division series will pit the winners of the one/eight matchups against the winners of the four/five matchups and the winners of the two/seven matchups against the winners of the three/six matchups.

MLB is adopting a bubble format for the post-season following the success of the NHL and NBA’s playoffs.

As a result, the American League division series will be played in San Diego and Los Angeles and the championship series will be played in San Diego. The National League division series will be played in Houston and Arlington, Texas. Arlington will also host the NL championship series and the World Series at Globe Life Park, the newly opened home of the Texas Rangers.

Below is the full schedule for the MLB playoffs. All times Eastern.


Tuesday, Sept. 29Rays (1) vs. Blue Jays (8), Game 15 p.m.SN
 Athletics (2) vs. White Sox (7), Game 13 p.m.SN360
 Twins (3) vs. Astros (6), Game 12 p.m.SN1
 Indians (4) vs. Yankees (5), Game 17 p.m.SN1
Wednesday, Sept. 30Rays (1) vs. Blue Jays (8), Game 24 p.m.SN
 Athletics (2) vs. White Sox (7), Game 23 p.m.SN360
 Twins (3) vs. Astros (6), Game 21 p.m.SN1
 Indians (4) vs. Yankees (5), Game 27 p.m.SN1
 Dodgers (1) vs. Brewers (8), Game 110 p.m.SN360
 Braves (2) vs. Reds (7), Game 1NoonSN & SN360
 Cubs (3) vs. Marlins (6), Game 12 p.m.SN NOW
 Padres (4) vs. Cardinals (5), Game 15 p.m.SN NOW
Thursday, Oct. 1Rays (1) vs. Blue Jays (8), Game 3TBD 
 Athletics (2) vs. White Sox (7), Game 3TBD 
 Twins (3) vs. Astros (6), Game 3TBD 
 Indians (4) vs. Yankees (5), Game 3TBD 
 Dodgers (1) vs. Brewers (8), Game 2TBD 
 Braves (2) vs. Reds (7), Game 2TBD 
 Cubs (3) vs. Marlins (6), Game 2TBD 
 Padres (4) vs. Cardinals (5), Game 2TBD 
Friday, Oct. 2Dodgers (1) vs. Brewers (8), Game 3TBD 
 Braves (2) vs. Reds (7), Game 3TBD 
 Cubs (3) vs. Marlins (6), Game 3TBD 
 Padres (4) vs. Cardinals (5), Game 3TBD


Monday, Oct. 5AL Division Series AGame 1San Diego, (1/8 vs. 4/5 winners)
 AL Division Series BGame 1Los Angeles (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)
Tuesday, Oct. 6AL Division Series AGame 2San Diego, (1/8 vs 4/5 winners)
 AL Division Series BGame 2Los Angeles (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)
 NL Division Series AGame 1Arlington (1/8 vs. 4/5 winners)
 NL Division Series BGame 1Houston (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)
Wednesday, Oct. 7AL Division Series AGame 3San Diego, (1/8 vs 4/5 winners)
 AL Division Series BGame 3Los Angeles (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)
 NL Division Series AGame 2Arlington (1/8 vs. 4/5 winners)
 NL Division Series BGame 2Houston (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)
Thursday, Oct. 8AL Division Series AGame 4San Diego, (1/8 vs 4/5 winners)
 AL Division Series BGame 4Los Angeles (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)
 NL Division Series AGame 3Arlington (1/8 vs. 4/5 winners)
 NL Division Series BGame 3Houston (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)
Friday, Oct. 9AL Division Series AGame 5San Diego, (1/8 vs 4/5 winners)
 AL Division Series BGame 5Los Angeles (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)
 NL Division Series AGame 4Arlington (1/8 vs. 4/5 winners)
 NL Division Series BGame 4Houston (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)
Saturday, Oct. 10NL Division Series AGame 5Arlington (1/8 vs. 4/5 winners)
 NL Division Series BGame 5Houston (2/7 vs. 3/6 winners)


Sunday, Oct. 11ALCSGame 1San Diego
Monday, Oct. 12ALCSGame 2San Diego
 NLCSGame 1Arlington
Tuesday, Oct. 13ALCSGame 3San Diego
 NLCSGame 2Arlington
Wednesday, Oct. 14ALCSGame 4San Diego
 NLCSGame 3Arlington
Thursday, Oct. 15ALCSGame 5San Diego
 NLCSGame 4Arlington
Friday, Oct. 16ALCSGame 6San Diego
 NLCSGame 5Arlington
Saturday, Oct. 17ALCSGame 7San Diego
 NLCSGame 6Arlington
Sunday, Oct. 18NLCSGame 7Arlington


Tuesday, Oct. 20World SeriesGame 1Arlington
Wednesday, Oct. 21World SeriesGame 2Arlington
Thursday, Oct. 22OFF DAY  
Friday, Oct. 23World SeriesGame 3Arlington
Saturday, Oct. 24World SeriesGame 4Arlington
Sunday, Oct. 25World SeriesGame 5Arlington
Monday, Oct. 26OFF DAY  
Tuesday, Oct. 27World SeriesGame 6Arlington
Wednesday, Oct. 28World SeriesGame 7Arlington

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Jeff Van Gundy, Ty Lue Emerge As Early Candidates For Clippers –



Jeff Van Gundy and Ty Lue have emerged as the early favorites to become the next head coach of the Los Angeles Clippers.

The Clippers parted ways with Doc Rivers on Monday.

Lue is also a candidate for the Philadelphia 76ers, Houston Rockets and New Orleans Pelicans.

Van Gundy is a candidate for Rockets. 

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