I’m sure this couldn’t be much more obvious, but this week’s NHL Team of the Week is the Colorado Avalanche. This week saw the Avalanche hoist the Stanley Cup. A long season of hard work and dominance all led to this point. Avs defenseman Cale Makar won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Stanley Cup playoffs Most Valuable Player, a well deserved honor for a young player that is well on his way to superstardom. He became one of just three defensemen to win the Norris Trophy (which goes to the NHL’s top defenseman), Conn Smythe Trophy, and Stanley Cup all in the same season, joining Hockey Hall of Famers Bobby Orr and Nicklas Lidstrom.
A lot of great players, coaches, and executives went into winning this championship, including but certainly not limited to Mikko Rantanen, Nathan MacKinnon, Nazem Kadri, Andre Burakovsky, Gabriel Landeskog, Devon Toews, Valeri Nichushkin, JT Compher, Alex Newhook, Samuel Girard, Erik Johnson, Logan O’Connor, Nicolas Aube-Kubel, Bowen Byram, Darren Helm, Darcy Kuemper, Pavel Francouz, Jared Bednar, Ray Bennett, Nolan Pratt, Joe Sakic, Craig Billington, and Matt Sokolowski.
This week’s MLB Team of the Week may come as a bit of a surprise, but they dug in, pitched well, and left with a winning record, making them one of just five teams with 7 wins in their last 10 games. This team is the Baltimore Orioles. After a 3-0 loss to start their week, they took four straight against the Nationals and White Sox, spinning two shutouts en route to allowing just three runs over those four games. A loss to the White Sox ended their week at 4-2, but they looked a lot better than the 30-38 team that they were going into the week. Their pitching staff, led by the surging Tyler Wells, Dean Kramer, and Joey Krehbiel have turned some heads, being handled by rookie phenom Adley Rutschman, and Ryan Mountcastle, Austin Hays, Cedric Mullins, Anthony Santander, and Trey Mancini have anchored a lineup that has been better than expected.
Our WNBA Team of the Week is the New York Liberty! This past week, they went 2-0, with road wins against the Atlanta Dream and the Connecticut Sun. The Liberty are now up to 8-10 on the season, going 7-3 in their last ten as they officially enter the playoff picture. Third year star Sabrina Ionescu and veteran forward Natasha Howard are putting together a formidable 1-2 punch, and when Betnijah Laney makes her return from the injured reserve next month, we will see just how far these Liberty can go.