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The AHL’s Charlotte Checkers Are Ready For The Playoffs

This past Sunday, I had the pleasure of covering the Charlotte Checkers who played their final regular-season home game against the Hartford Wolf Pack. Not only was it my first time ever covering a hockey game, but it was also my first time even attending a hockey match in person, which was incredible. The game took place at the Bojangles Coliseum, which was an overtime matchup that ended with the Hartford Wolf Pack taking it 4-3.

While the Checkers may not have gotten the win, it was still a memorable day for team captain Zac Dalpe who was playing in his milestone 600th professional game. I attended this game not for a “recap,” but to learn more about the team that has Charlotte’s heart.

The Charlotte Checkers are a minor league professional ice hockey team that are a part of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference in the American Hockey League. They are affiliates of the NHL’s Florida Panthers and Seattle Kraken.

Originally known as the Capital District Islanders from 1990 to 1993 and based in Troy, New York, the team took on another moniker, the Albany River Rats for nearly seventeen years before relocating to Charlotte in 2010. Once there, the River Rats officially changed their name to the Charlotte Checkers, making them the second professional minor league hockey team to officially be recognized in the highest level of minor-league hockey.

At the time, the Checkers were playing at what was then known as the Time Warner Cable Arena (now the Spectrum Center) and moved to the Bojangles Coliseum in 2010. While the Checkers have been fun to watch every year, their 2018-2019 season is widely regarded as their best thus far in team history. That year, the Checkers captured the Regular Season Title, the Division Championship, the Conference Championship, and the Calder Cup.

For those that don’t know, the Calder Cup is the annual trophy awarded to the American Hockey League Champion each year. Fast forward to 2022, and the Checkers are hoping for the same outcome. The team clinched their playoff berth on April 7th, making them the first team to get an invitation to the 2022 Playoffs

Obviously, the city of Charlotte is very excited about the team’s chance to bring home another trophy this year, and that was evident during this final home game. The Bojangles Coliseum houses 8,600 seats, and despite already clinching a playoff spot, the turnout was still amazing. I’d estimate that at least 8,300 of 8,600 seats were filled, and that number could have been more as there were tons of people getting food and merchandise.

Many of those fans were rocking Checkers gear, and we’re genuinely disappointed to see their team lose despite the fact that in the grand scheme of things, the game really didn’t matter much.

The food options were simple yet satisfying with an abundance of pizza, popcorn, hot dogs, chicken tenders, and more, and the live experience was awesome. Since I had never been to a hockey game before, I didn’t know what to expect. I had multiple people tell me that the hockey live experience is among the most exciting to watch, and after attending myself, I would have to agree. I can only imagine what a hockey playoff game feels like, and it is my hope that one day I’ll be able to attend one.

Best of luck to the Charlotte Checkers as they embark on their postseason journey, which you can follow via their Instagram and Twitter.


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Sports Strength

Get Ready For The 2022 WNBA Draft

Well, this is a quick turnaround, right? It was just a few days ago that we were watching the Final Four and Championship matchups, and now in just three days, we are going to have the first in-person WNBA Draft since 2019. And if we’re having the draft, that means we’re only about a month away (actually less than a month) from the season starting. We’ll have a little more on that as we get closer to the May 6th tip-off date, but for now, our focus is solely on this draft, and the exciting storylines that are following it.

Here are some of the key things to look forward to.

When is the 2022 WNBA Draft?

The WNBA Draft will take place on Monday, April 11, 2022, and ESPN will broadcast the event at 7 pm EST.

Where is the 2022 WNBA Draft?
DraftKings

As we mentioned earlier, the draft will be held in person at Spring Studios in New York for the first time since 2019.

Who’s Picking First?

If you watched the WNBA Draft Lottery on December 21st, then you probably already know that the Washington Mystics won the first pick. However, there’s been a development. This past Wednesday, the Mystics traded that number one pick to the Atlanta Dream in exchange for the No 3. overall pick, No. 14 overall pick, and the rights to swap 2023 draft picks. This means ATL is officially picking first this year, which leads us to our next point?

Who Is The Anticipated No. 1 Draft Pick?

This is gonna be a close one. The projected number one picks this year are Kentucky’s Rhyne Howard, and Baylor’s NaLyssa Smith. The Atlanta Dream aren’t giving any hints either. In fact, they are having a lot of fun with their secretive “we know something you don’t,” social media teasers. Guess we’ll have to wait and see.

How Many Players Will Be Drafted?

A total of 36 players will be drafted, with 12 players being selected in each round, so there are plenty of opportunities for players coming out of college to get picked up by a team.

Who Are Some of the Top 12?

Obviously, Rhyne Howard and NaLyssa Smith are a part of the top 12, but other names to look out for include: Destanni Henderson from South Carolina, Shakira Austin from Ole Miss, Nyara Sabally (recognize the last name?) from Oregon, Elissa Cunane from NC State, and more.

So, we’re watching the draft as a family right? Cool! Be sure to keep up with me on Twitter as I will be live-tweeting through the night.

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Sports Strength

How Steph Curry’s UNDERRATED Is Producing The Talent of Tomorrow

As Steph Curry and the Warriors prepare for yet another postseason run, there was another “playoff” that had Steph’s focus over this past weekend. Last Friday, the UNDERRATED Championship kicked off with a weekend-long event, which took place at the Soldiertown indoor basketball court. The event consisted of a talented roster of high school student basketball players from across the country who competed in tournament-style games while also receiving specialized training, tailored experiences, and best-in-class resources.

Now in its third season, the UNDERRATED tournament seeks to find America’s most UNDERRATED region and was created and designed to raise visibility for often-overlooked three-star high school players, like Steph in his own basketball career, to give more opportunities to enter college-level athletics.

The invite-only event is the culmination of a nationwide search for overlooked and underrepresented high school student basketball talent, bringing together tour finalists to compete in tournament-style games where one boy and one girl are crowned the country’s most UNDERRATED athlete representing their region.

Powered by Rakuten this year, two $20,000 scholarship opportunities for Championship-bound players that can be used toward the college were presented to the participants, and one boy and one girl were selected to receive them during the event as well.

One thing is clear—the UNDERRATED tour is dedicated to producing the talent of tomorrow, and ONE37pm spoke with MyLinh Chau, Head of Experience for UNDERRATED, about the program, and the direction the SC30 team plans on taking it in the future.

ONE37pm: Congratulations on this great event! Could you tell us more about the UNDERRATED championship?

Chau: This year marks our third annual UNDERRATED Championship, which brings together high schoolers from across the country to compete and play the sport they love – basketball – under the guidance of Stephen Curry and the UNDERRATED family. Throughout the summer of 2021, the UNDERRATED Tour stopped in four cities (Washington D.C., Dallas, Chicago, Los Angeles) where 75 boys and 75 girls were given a chance to learn and break through the noise.

The final 64 participants (16 from each city) were flown to the Bay Area for the Championship. The weekend-long event will include tournament-style games and specialized training, tailored experiences, and best-in-class resources like drills, off-court education, personal skills development, expert panels, and more.

ONE37pm: What was the process of putting this event together in terms of selecting the teams, location, etc.?

Chau: During the first day at each regional stop, there are 75 boys and 75 girls who have been selected to participate. On the second day, it is narrowed down to 30 boys and 30 girls who have been selected to come back, and from there we pare it down to eight boys and eight girls from each region.

The UNDERRATED Championships is a tournament style. With that in mind, we wanted to bring all of the student-athletes to the Bay Area and support them with a large championship moment, in the city that is so near and dear to Stephen’s heart.

ONE37pm: A new addition to this year’s program includes Rakuten’s $20,000 scholarship opportunities. Could you tell us more about that?

Chau: The $20,000 scholarship that Rakuten has offered is an incredible addition to this year’s championship, as these athletes are being given a chance to reach their truest potential when they otherwise might not have had such resources available to attend their first-choice college, university or trade school. The scholarship will be granted to two individuals, one boy and one girl, at this weekend’s final tour stop in Oakland.

ONE37pm: The UNDERRATED Championship was created and designed to raise visibility for often-overlooked three-star high school players, like Steph, and you guys continue to evolve. Are there any more events planned for this year?

Chau: We’re empowered to evolve the UNDERRATED mission in shedding light on overlooked talents through continuing these championships, beyond just basketball. We have a very exciting year ahead and look forward to engaging with even more talented young athletes nationwide.

You can keep up with the UNDERRATED tour via Twitter

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Sports Strength

Stony Brook Basketball Team Partners With College HUNKS

As we prepare to wrap up the end of the 2021-2022 college basketball season with some exciting matchups over the next couple of days, big time moves are already being made for the 2022-2023 season. One of those moves is a major announcement coming from Stony Brook University. The school recently announced a new partnership with College HUNKS Hauling Junk and Moving in Long Island, which will sponsor the entire Stony Brook Men’s Basketball Team for the ‘22 campaign.

This deal marks the first full-team endorsement of a Long Island college team, as College HUNKS believes in building and supporting leaders. Since the NCAA passed a policy that opened up sponsorship opportunities for college athletes, College HUNKS has been showing their support across the country with the signing of  University of Miami Quarterback D’Eriq King, and endorsement deals with the San Diego State football team, and Howard University Men’s Basketball team, making them the first to partner with an HBCU. 

College HUNKS celebrated the moment with Stony Brook basketball players at a signing event at their offices in Hauppauge, NY, and we connected with Mo Diallo from the Stony Brook team to talk more about this groundbreaking partnership.

ONE37pm: Congratulations on this partnership with College HUNKS! What does this mean for the university?

Diallo: This is the first entire Long Island team to receive a sponsorship – which is bringing awareness and recognition to our university. Our team and university look forward to broadening our partnership and working together. 

ONE37pm: This sponsorship will carry through until the 2022 season, so what can fans expect this upcoming season?

Diallo: Spotlighting that our team is able to collect from NIL deals will help with recruitment, as well as showing student-athletes with an entrepreneurial spirit how to capitalize on their own name, image and likeness. This upcoming season, our team members will work in collaboration with College HUNKS to be out in the community giving back, as well as encouraging people to come and work for the brand. 

ONE37pm: You guys had a signing recently to celebrate. How was that?

Diallo: Many of our team members work with College HUNKS in the summer, and this was a great way to celebrate with the College HUNKS brand. The brand hosted a signing event where we received SWAG and gear. It was a great celebration for our team being the first full team in Long Island to receive a sponsorship. 

ONE37pm: How does this deal pave the way for future sponsorship opportunities?

Diallo: Working with NOCAP Sports helped to ensure that all of our players were in alignment with NIL deals. This deal paves the way for future sponsorship opportunities as our team is now comfortable with the process of NIL deals and how they work.

When asked about College HUNKS decision to partner with Stony Brook, Co-Founder and Visionary Nick Friedman and Co-Owner of Long Island College HUNKS had this to say.

College HUNKS believes in building leaders within our organization and in the communities that we serve. We are honored to support college athletes as they set the path for their careers. We chose to support Stony Brook, so we could help local Long Island student athletes, many who work with us during the summer months.

We are committed to offering our top-notch service and support to our local communities and upholding the core values of our brand, which include being a purpose-driven company.”

Fun times are ahead this fall, but in the meantime you can keep up with the Stony Brook Basketball Team and College HUNKS on Instagram.

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Sports Strength

The Latest NBA G-League Highlights from the Past Week

We’re back with another G-League update. Now if the date on the G-League calendar is correct, then that means the playoffs start on April 5th, which means we are only a little over a week away. So we figured that we would give you guys an update on what the playoff picture is looking like.

Before we get into that though, the G-League has a new way that they are revealing post-season awards. Last week the league unveiled the first-ever custom-designed family of post-season awards designed by artist Victor Solomon, whose previous credits include working with the G League to redesign the Winter Showcase trophy collection, as well as the NBA on the Kobe Bryant Trophy for the Kia All-Star Game MVP.

NBA G-League
G-League Championship Trophy

The NBA G League Championship Trophy, NBA G League Finals MVP Award, NBA G League Eastern and Western Conference Championship Trophies, Kia NBA G League MVP Award, and Kia NBA G League Rookie of the Year Award amongst others all have a brand new design courtesy of Solomon, and we must say the drip is pretty nice. 

Now that we have that established, let’s get back to the playoff scenario. The format for the 2021-2022 season is quite simple. The format will feature four rounds and 12 total teams, the six top teams from the Eastern Conference and the six top teams from the Western Conference.  

The top two teams from each conference will receive an automatic bye into the second round. The playoffs will begin with three single-elimination rounds before culminating with a best-of-three NBA G League Finals, which will be played in a one-on-one format.

That means if the action were to start today, these are the teams that would be in:

Eastern Conference:

1. Raptors 905

2. Capital City Go-Go

3. Delaware Blue Coats

4. Motor City Cruise

5. Grand Rapids Gold

6. College Park Skyhawks

Western Conference

1. Rio Grande Valley Vipers

2. Agua Caliente Clippers

3. South Bay Lakers

4. Texas Legends

5. Birmingham Squadron

6. Stockton Kings

Raptors 905, Capital City Go-Go, Rio Grande Valley Vipers, and Agua Caliente Clippers would automatically receive a bye into the second round, and the remaining teams would have to duke it out in single round elimination games. 

We’ll know more information on the standings and matchups at the end of the week, so we’ll be back with another update to let you guys know what’s happening. In the meantime, enjoy the final week of the season.

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Sports Strength

Breaking Down The New Adidas NIL Program

It’s hard to believe that we’re almost a year into the introduction of Name, Image, and Likeness officially being introduced into the lives of collegiate athletes, but we’re here, and things are progressing rapidly. Yesterday, Adidas became the first major sports brand to enact a wide-sweeping, equitable and inclusive NIL network open to every eligible student-athlete at an Adidas-partnered NCAA Division I university.

adidas
adidas More Than Possible

Here are the details.

More than 50,000 student-athletes across 23 sports and 109 schools will be eligible to become paid Adidas brand ambassadors through the program, with the network roll-out beginning with HBCUs and Power-5 conference partners in Fall. By this time next year, every qualified Adidas school will have access to the program.

To help celebrate the anniversary of Title IX, the remaining schools participating in the Sweet 16 will be donning “More is Possible” t-shirts for the rest of their time in the tournament. On the back, the shirts list the iconic 37 words that formally outlawed gender discrimination in American education and collegiate athletics.

adidas
More Than Possible NC State

Rupert Campbell, president of Adidas, had this to say about this groundbreaking partnership.

“At Adidas, we are committed to creating change through sport and recognize the important role student-athletes play in shaping the future,” said Rupert Campbell, president of Adidas North America. “Our groundbreaking NIL program advances our commitments toward building inclusivity in sport and inspires athletes to realize a more equitable world. I can’t wait to see it come to life.”

Candace Parker, who has a new documentary Title IX: 37 Words That Changed America that’s set to premiere on TBS during the 2022 NCAA Division I Men’s Final Four weekend programming, will also have an active voice and presence in the program.

Getty Images
Candace Parker

“Adidas’s NIL network is an incredible step forward for the growth of women’s sports,” adds Candace Parker, Adidas partner. “It will have an impact on the future of college athletics and hopefully create a more equal, sustainable landscape where athletes feel supported and invested in as they grow in their college careers. It builds upon Adidas’s and my shared ambition to empower the next generation of women in life and sport.”

​​To celebrate March Madness, ‘More Is Possible’ shirts will be available for retail starting March 23 on adidas.com, Fanatics, and other local collegiate retailers for $25.

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Sports Strength

8 NCAA Women’s Players To Watch in The 2022 March Madness Tournament

We’re finally here everyone. What an exciting season this has been! The first-round matchups are set, and now it’s time for the stars to shine their brightest. As you all know, March Madness is when lives are changed and careers are made.

The ante is upped, and the competition is intensified in a scenario where it is win or go home. While nobody knows for sure what will happen, we do know a few players who have made splashes this season. Sticking with our bracket theme, here’s our “Elite 8.”

1. Aliyah Boston

Let’s start with the obvious. Aliyah Boston has been nothing short of sensational, putting together a near-perfect season offensively and defensively that has her to be the widely projected National Player of The Year. One thing’s for certain, the South Carolina Gamecocks are going to need Boston’s efforts if they want to take home the trophy this year.

2. Nalyssa Smith

We’ve heard a lot about the talent that is Nalyssa Smith over the past couple of years, and boy has she continued to deliver. Averaging 22.5 points, Smith is currently expected to be picked first at next month’s WNBA Draft in New York City.

3. Paige Bueckers

Paige Bueckers had a dominant freshman campaign and probably would have pulled similar numbers this year if not for a knee injury that caused her to miss nineteen games this season. That said, let’s not forget who Paige Bueckers is, and what she is capable of. If health isn’t an issue, we could easily Bueckers in peak form. If she’s scoring 20 plus a night…look out.

4. Caitlin Clark

Ladies and gentlemen, the Caitlin Clark. To say Clark has been incredible this year, would be one of the biggest understatements of the 21-22 campaign. Clark has also presented a case for National Player of the Year honors with many memorable games such as her 43 point showing against Ohio State, and her 46 point barrage against the 5th ranked Michigan. Let’s see what Clark does in the tournament.

5. Ayoka Lee

Let’s take a look at Kansas St. center Ayoka Lee. There’s often a debate if “true centers” exist in the game of basketball anymore, and Lee proves on a nightly basis that it very much still exists amongst certain teams and players. Lee is wildly dominant on both offense and defense and is hard to stop once she gets going. In fact, it’s best not to get her going if you want to beat Kansas St.

6. Rhyne Howard

The recently announced Cheryl Miller award finalist has been on a tear ladies and gentlemen, and there are a couple of games we could highlight as an example. Let’s take it back to Howard’s season-high 32 point effort on Senior Day two weeks ago where she put on a show one final time for the Kentucky crowd. Or we could take it back a little further to the game where she officially became No. 2 on the UK scoring list with a 19 point showing against Missouri. Howard will be another player to watch for at the draft.

7. Cameron Brink

You could call her Cameron Brink. Or you could also call her the Pac-12 Women’s Basketball Defensive Player of the Year. She’ll answer to both. While defense got her that honor, we can’t ignore her offensive contributions either. Brink is averaging 13.6 points per game, roughly four points more than last year, and can easily give you eight to ten rebounds each night. Brink is a tenacious player who we’re excited to see have an impact on this year’s tourney.

8. Haley Jones

Haley Jones. Let’s break it down for a second. First of all, Jones is already a national champion as the Cardinal took home the trophy last season in a tournament run that led to the standout athlete being named the Final Four Most Outstanding Player. Now Jones is back, averaging a nearly identical stat line as her 20-21 season. Perhaps the Cardinal will have an identical outcome and repeat as champions? It will be tough, but anything is possible when it’s March Madness.

So who you got? The women’s tournament officially kicks off tomorrow. In the meantime, let’s stock up on our popcorn.

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Sports Strength

ONE37pm Speaks With College Basketball Legend Kris Jenkins

Kris Jenkins will forever have his place not just in Villanova Wildcats history, but in NCAA history with his buzzer beating, championship-winning shot against number one ranked UNC in 2016. “The shot” encapsulated what March Madness is all about. The score was 74-71, Villanova. With a little over 13 seconds left in the game, North Carolina guard, Marcus Paige hit an almost indescribable three pointer that tied the game at 74 with a little over four second remaining. Those four seconds left Villanova with just enough time to get a shot off. Make it, you win the championship. Miss it, you go to overtime.

Hall of Fame coach, Jay Wright, drew up a play that was originally designed for Villanova senior guard Ryan Arcidiacono, except he didn’t have the look he wanted. It was Kris Jenkins that was open, and with 0.9 seconds remaining, Jenkins pulled up from beyond the three point line to hit the first and only buzzer beater in the Men’s NCAA National Championship. Since Selection Sunday was yesterday, we figured we’d catch up with Jenkins to talk about this historic moment, and what he has been up to recently.

ONE37pm: Great to chat with you Kris! We all want to know what was going on through your mind when you hit the shot?

Jenkins: Well, North Carolina’s Marcus Paige had just hit this circus ridiculous tough shot. As we were walking back into the huddle, we kind of had a sense of the play that we were going to run. We were all pretty calm because we knew there was time to get a good look. 

ONE37pm: What was the play Coach Wright drew up?

Jenkins: It’s crazy because normally in that scenario we would give the ball to Arcidiacono who was our senior captain. Obviously we were going to give him the ball and tell him to win the game with our end of the game scenarios that we ran at practice. Daniel (Ochefu) set a good screen, and Arch was able to make a good pass because he didn’t have the shot he wanted. I was the last option. Arch was the first option, and then Phil [Booth] and Josh [Hart] were the second and third options. 

ONE37pm: How does it feel having one of if not the most iconic shots in NCAA Basketball history? That’s a life-changing shot right?

Jenkins: It was definitely a life-changing shot! Life has certainly been a little crazy after that, just getting recognized at certain places, and going out with your family and being recognized not just in the area, but kind of across the world. It’s been cool! I didn’t really know what to expect after the moment exactly happened, but it’s been pretty fun!

ONE37pm: How much can you share about your upcoming NFT project?

Jenkins: We definitely have some NFT projects coming out in the near future, so be on the lookout for that. We’re also going to do a separate auction for the game shoes that I wore during the championship. So we’re in the process of figuring out how to do that, while also trying to map out how we can give back because that’s something that I’ve always wanted to do. I want to make a positive change and put a smile on a Villanova fan’s face because I’m pretty sure the buyer will be one.

ONE37pm: What does a normal day in the life look like for you?

Jenkins: A normal day in the life is me continuing to strengthen my hip because I was playing basketball and had a little minor setback. I’m recovering that and trying to exalt business relationships while creating new relationships because that’s what it’s about not only in the basketball world, but in life in general. I help my mom with my grandad from time to time, and I’m just staying focused on the next basketball season coming up.

ONE37pm: Awesome! You have a clothing line coming up as well right?

Jenkins: Yeah! We just partnered with Fanarch to release t-shirts, hoodies, phone cases, and things like that. We’re also giving back some of the proceeds to different charities, so it’s not just me trying to do something for my own personal gain. I’m always looking to give back. I give more than I receive, and I’ve always kind of been like that. The clothing line is a big deal, so definitely holding it down in that regard!

ONE37pm: Okay final question. The madness has officially begun. What is your advice to the athletes competing this year?

Jenkins: The only advice I would probably give would be to stay in the moment, and be all about winning with your team because that is the best chance you have to do something special. Be in the moment, work as hard as you can, and leave no stone unturned because like you said earlier, this month can not only change the lives of one individual, but an entire university. If you look at it from that regard, it can make you focus more because a lot is at stake.

Be sure to keep up with Kris and all of his latest updates on Instagram and Twitter

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Sports Strength

The Big South Championship Was One To Watch

As we prepare to kick off multiple conference tournaments this week, there’s one conference that already has a team with their ticket to the Big Dance punched. The Longwood Lancers are going dancing, and they secured their spot in dominating fashion this past week at the Big South Tournament in Charlotte, North Carolina. The tournament, which has been held every year since 1986, features eleven teams competing in a single-round elimination format. This year was no different, and the Lancers blazed through the competition beating the no 9. NC A&T, no 4. ranked USC Upstate, and back-to-back champion Winthrop.

ONE37pm spoke to Big South Senior Associate Commissioner James Holland about the tournament being in Charlotte, the Longwood Lancers heading to March Madness, and what we can expect from future events.

ONE37pm: You guys put in so much sweat equity in the past months, how does it feel to see this turnout?

Holland: We feel fantastic! It was a lot of work, a lot of people put a ton of time in, and it came together nicely. Everybody did their part!

ONE37pm: The Longwood Lancers are going dancing. How do you feel knowing that you changed the trajectory of some of these student-athletes?

Holland: As a former coach it’s great! I know the feeling of going to the NCAA tournament as a player and winning a championship. Right now these young men are excited, but knowing that they are the first group from Longwood University to go to the March Madness tournament will be a great feeling for them ten years from now.

ONE37pm: You grew up in Charlotte, how does it feel to be back. Can we expect you to be back in years to come?

Holland: We hope to be back! The hospitality has been fantastic, and there’s been a lot of support from everyone involved. We’ve been able to learn the process so next year things will be a little bit smoother, and we’ll try to upgrade some things also! We’re looking forward to big things in the coming years. 

Be sure to follow both the Big South and Longwood Athletics on Instagram to keep up with their latest updates.

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NBA G-League Highlights and Updates the Week of March 4th

One. More. Month. That’s about all we have left before playoff time, which means it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty. Teams are battling for their spots and looking to clinch, which means we’ve got an interesting few weeks ahead of us. Before we get into that though, let’s dive into the latest announcements from this week.

Getty Images

Highlights and Updates

Isaiah Thomas earned this week’s “Player of the Week” honors, averaging 41.3 points, 6.3 assists, and 5.7 three-pointers made. Thomas was a human highlight reel this past week, and it paid off as the point guard just signed a 10-day contract with the Charlotte Hornets. Thomas made his Hornets debut this past Wednesday, scoring 10 points, 5 rebounds, and 3 assists versus the Cleveland Cavaliers.

In other news, Nik Stauskas of the Grand Rapid Golds has been on a crazy tear lately, combining for 100 points in his last two games. This makes Stauskas the second player in G League history to score 100 plus points during a two-game span, and the first player in G-League history to achieve that feat back to back. 

All the way over in Salt Lake, Carsen Edwards notched his career-high of 46 points versus the Iowa Wolves, and the Raptors 905’s newest addition, Svi Myhkailiuk, had an excellent debut against the College Park Skyhawks with a whopping 40 points.

Player Spotlight

It should come as no surprise that Craig Randall II was named February’s “Player of the Month.” Randall has been sensational, peaking at just the right time as Long Island is looking to hold onto their playoff spot. The Nets should be okay, but Grand Rapids Gold and the Westchester Knicks aren’t that far behind them. One thing’s for sure, the Nets are going to need Randall to keep playing at this high level as we enter the final stretch.

Team Spotlight

Well, the Motor City Cruise are certainly cruising, winning eight out of their last ten games. The Cruise currently hold a 15-5 record in the Eastern Conference, but the degree of separation is quite slim in this conference. The Cruise will definitely be making the playoffs, but they also will want to hold onto that number one seed.

That’s gonna do it for this week’s roundup. We’ll be back next week with another update.