Monday, April 11, 2011, 2:55 p.m.
UPDATED - 6:45 p.m.By Benjamin Standig
CSNwashington.comON-AIRThe Tony Kornheiser show (ESPN 980): Mr. Tony avoided talking through anyones backswing, but chatted plenty about all things Masters (though largely played around and through the whats his name winner), including the car wreck of final round for the teary-eyed, 21-year old Rory McIlroy. That three or four hole stretch of weekend hacker golf on the back nine had a career-ending vibe about it as he joined a group of other under 30-types including Dustin Johnson and Aaron Baddeley that have blow up with a Major lead. But all of Monday's talkers talked up the kids game and apparently he is handling his collapse with a serious stiff upper lip. Barry Svurluga walked the final round with Tiger Woods and the Washington Post scribe was there for the fist-pumping eagle on No. 8, which he described as the first truly Tiger moment weve had in the last 18 months.As for the constant changing of the guard atop the leaderboard, Svurluga said itwas nothing like Ive ever seen before. Neither Barry or Tony could comprehend how Adam Scotts daring final round left him two shots off the pace and more baffling, why the dashing 30-year old Aussie uses the embarrassingold man belly putter.On the bigger picture level, Kornheiser pondered whether Tiger would be able to churn out five more major titles against the ever deeper (and younger) worldwide field to pass Jack Nicklaus all-time record of 18. Having to contend with previously considered under-the-radar players like Charl Schwartzel and Jason Day plus the likes of McIlroy, PGA Champion Martin Kaymer and Americans Rickie Fowler and Anthony Kim makes for a steeper climb to the top of golfs mountain.The Sports Fix (ESPN 980): Pressure comes with the postseason, but obviously there is arguably a touch more for the top-seeded Capitals to fight through, starting Wednesday against No. 8 Rangers. Comcast Sportsnets Alan May told Kevin and Thom that this edition should be able to handle adversity better than last seasons crew because of the up and down season they just went through compared to the mostly smooth sailing in '09-10. Other musings from May included the plan to beat the Rangers star goalie Henrik Lundqvist (Capitals continuing their havoc creating ways in front of the net); the player that needs to step up in order for the locals to advance beyond the opening round (the enigmatic Alexander Semin); how the goalie situation will unfold (If the team plays as it should, no reason to replace Michael Neuvirth between the pipes); and a prediction (Caps in five).ONLINEThe New York Rangers clinched the eighth and final playoff berth in the NHLs Eastern Conference, crushing the Carolina Panthers postseason dreams. In the process, according to the New York Daily News, the Madison Square Garden denizens drew a collective groan from the Washington Capitals fan base. Something about how the Rangers won three of four from Alex Ovechkin and company this season by a combined score of 18-6.
Of course, the Capitals have become a grittier bunch over the course of the season. Lets hope, so as to avoid the fallout over anothernah, not gonna say it, but you know.Mock Draft Monday is here with a tanden attack of options that land the Redskins pass rusher Robert Quinn (makes sense) or corner Prince Amukamara (player yes, position no). Its looking rather unlikely that Auburn quarterback Cam Newton will fall to 10, meaning a trade up would be required to land the Heisman Trophy winners services. A certain Jon Grudens says Newton is the best player in the country, but then again, Coach Chucky thinks every player is great.
If I had lunch with Jack Nicklaus, Id be good simply listening to the winning tales from tee-to-green, all while trying to eat with my mouth closed and not let my voice crack into a high-pitch impression of golfs all-time majors winner. Charl Schwartzel had the good fortune to dine with the Golden Bear and used that time to begin crafting a conquering game plan for Augusta National and the Masters.
The South African rolled in four straight birdies to finish off the Green Jacket triumph, but also had some help along the way, from Rory McIlroys Greg Norman impression to Tiger Woods inconsistent putter. And for those who would like to know what it feels like to battle Amen Corner along side Tiger, this as close to perfect as you would hope, video game takes you there.
He suffered the worst debut loss of any No. 1 pick in NBA history, lost his first 25 road games and hasnt always dealt with the onslaught of defeats in the best form. Yet John Walls play has been as advertised and now the electric point guard is starting to feel more positive about the Wizards direction with how the team is closing out the season. That includes the beatdown they handed out on Saturday to the playoff-bound Atlanta Hawks and former Wizards guard Kirk Hinrich, who received the gag gift treatment upon his return to the Verizon Center.
The soccer flop heard from coast-to-coast Saturday night disgusted David Beckham, but it also helped D.C. United work out a 1-1 tie with Becks L.A. Galaxy. Ben Olsens crew improved to 1-2-1 as the newish coach is still working on pushing all the right buttons.
The end of the womens college basketball season means its time for the WNBA Draft . The Washington Mystics have the 11th pick in Mondays first round, though they have already made a pre-draft move to bolster its frontcourt.
After winning their wildest game of the young season, the Nationals turn to Livan Hernandez on Tuesday in hopes of getting a rare W against the Phillies.