The Calm Before the Storm


By: Jeff Yoder

Good Morning,

The NCAA Tournament has officially begun, but it’s not just college hoops that are bringing the madness. Today’s edition goes all basketball as yet another NBA star went for 60 points alongside the First Four games in Dayton. More games are on tonight before the brackets are locked. Get your picks in. Then get your dancing shoes on…

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First Four Warm-Ups

Photo: Andy Lyons / Getty Images

Indiana & Texas Southern Get First Two Wins of NCAA Tournament


We’re dancing! I know the First Four are a bit of a technicality, but don’t forget what happened last year. UCLA was an 11-seed who went from the First Four to the Final Four. Indiana and Texas Southern were opening night winners, and the Hoosiers got a big night from Trayce Jackson-Davis (29 points, 9 rebounds). Indiana could be a sleeper team to watch, but so could the winner of tonight’s 11-seed matchup between Rutgers and Notre Dame. The Scarlet Knights have been Goliath-slayers all season long, and the Irish are ACC-tested. You can see last night’s highlights and look ahead to tonight’s action before the full slate tips off tomorrow.


Yesterday’s Highlights


Men’s First Four

#16 Tex. Southern def. #16 Tex. AMCC (76-67)

#12 Indiana def. #12 Wyoming (66-58)


Tonight’s Schedule


Men’s First Four

#16 Wright State vs. #16 Bryant (6:40 pm ET)

#11 Rutgers vs. #11 Notre Dame (9:10 pm ET)


Women’s First Four

#16 Incarnate Word vs. #16 Howard (7:00 pm ET)

#11 Dayton vs. #11 DePaul (9:00 pm ET)


First-Round Games Begin Tomorrow

Full Men’s NCAA Tournament Schedule

Full Women’s NCAA Tournament Schedule



Kyrie’s 60-Ball Continues NBA Blitz

Photo: Mark Brown / Getty Images

Kyrie Irving Breaks Nets Record, Adds 60-Point Night to NBA’s Hot-Shooting Madness


We thought the “madness” of March pertained to college basketball, but it turns out the NBA had other plans. After six 50-point performances in the first half of March, including a 60-point outing for Karl-Anthony Towns on Monday, could you believe it would happen again? Kyrie Irving already had one of those 50-point games a week ago, but he decided to up the stakes. Irving erupted for a 41-point first half in the Nets’ blowout of the Magic on Tuesday (150-108). He added 19 more in the second half for a 60-piece just one night after Towns’ 60-ball — tying the NBA season-high.


50-Point Games in March (7)

LeBron James (56 & 50)

Jayson Tatum (54)

Kevin Durant (53)

Karl-Anthony Towns (60)

Kyrie Irving (50 & 60)


Fun Fact: Irving and Durant became the first pair of teammates to have back-to-back 50-point games in NBA history.


Irving’s performance was good for a Nets franchise record. He went 20-for-31 from the floor and 8-for-12 from deep. His full stat line read 60 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 4 steals in just 35 minutes. Towns and Irving became the first players in league history to score 60 on back-to-back nights, and the NBA’s own “March Madness” continues… Who’s next?


Watch: Kyrie Irving Drops 60-Ball in Nets’ Win


Other Highlights: The Teams on Top

The league’s top three teams were all in action on Tuesday, and they were all winners. As playoffs near, we’re finding out who’s who. Miami (46-24), Phoenix (55-14) and Memphis (48-22) just further solidified their place atop the league.


Grizzlies def. Pacers (135-102)

Heat def. Pistons (105-98)

Suns def. Pelicans (131-115)



The Return to Madness

Photo: Jamie Squire / Getty Images

After 2 Years of an NCAA Tournament Under Construction, the Real Madness is Back (By Matthew Cahill)


After an exciting week of Conference Championships, we now have a definitive list of who is dancing, and who isn’t. From there, millions of us will make our brackets with friends, family, and co-workers (be sure to join The Sportsletter’s Bracket Challenge), and we’ll be glued to the TV for the coming weeks as college basketball takes over the sports world. Brackets will be busted, crowds will erupt in cheer or dismay, and legacies will be cemented as the greatest tournament in sports unfolds.


While this seems like a right of passage, the 2020 and 2021 seasons showed us life without a typical tournament, and it’s not something I ever want to experience again. Here’s an overview of all that’s happened since the last March Madness three years ago.


Read Full Article (



Offseason Tracker



⚽️ UCL: Atletico Send Ronaldo & Man-U Packing

Atletico Madrid got a late first-half goal from Renan Lodi (41’) in Leg 2 of the Champions League Round of 16 against Manchester United, and that was all they needed. The Man-U exit marks the second straight that Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have been knocked out of the Champions League in the Round of 16.


🏒 NHL: Ovechkin Passes Jagr With Goal 767

Alex Ovechkin is officially third on the NHL’s all-time goals list after notching No. 767 in the Capitals’ win over the Islanders (4-3, SO). The 36-year-old trails only Gordie Howe (801) and Wayne Gretzky (894). His 37th goal of the season helped him passed Jagr’s mark in 477 fewer games.



👎  Sports History’s Worst Retirements

Tom Brady returned to football on Monday like he never left. “This guy has done nothing the last six weeks and has made himself the biggest story in sports three times.” From Brady to Michael Jordan, these are the worst retirements in sports history… (FOX Sports)


🏒  NHL Trade Deadline: Team Guides

The NHL trade deadline is Monday at 3 p.m. ET. Several contenders are looking to add the final pieces to their Stanley Cup puzzles. Other teams are seeking to capitalize on the value of pending free agents before they walk away. (ESPN+)


🏀  Cinderella Stories for Women’s NCAA Tourney

In the women’s NCAA tournament, No. 1 seeds usually reign supreme. In the first 39 years of the event, 87 of the 156 (55.7%) top seeds have made the Final Four. But these eight teams have the potential for a Final Four run, too. (Sports Illustrated)


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