27-win Drexel Meets 27-win VCU in Battle of Teams Who Might Otherwise Get Snubbed

27-win Drexel Meets 27-win VCU in Battle of Teams Who Might Otherwise Get Snubbed

Welcome to the Colonial Athletic Association. Welcome to March. Welcome to a league where two 27-win teams from a conference that has produced two Final Four teams in the last six years have to fear being snubbed by the selection committee after winning -- one more time -- 27 games.

First, the important stuff. Tip-off between the (27-5, 16-2) Drexel Dragons and the (27-6, 15-3) Virginia Commonwealth Rams for the CAA Conference Championship is scheduled for 7 p.m. and can be seen on ESPN.

Second, the "what you need to knows" after jump...

-- The selection committee, or at least the bracketologists, aren't high on the CAA.

-- Drexel has won its last 19 in a row 25 of its last 26 games, but has meaningful wins over literally no one but VCU, meaning their RPI is iffy and their strength of schedule is an unmitigated disgrace.

-- VCU has a better tournament resume than Drexel based on their SOS and out-of-conference wins.

-- The above three points are important because without clinching an automatic bid with a win tonight, it's possible the loser could be snubbed from the NCAA tournament should the CAA not receive a single at-large.

-- Working against Drexel this evening is the fact that the CAA tournament in played in VCU's backyard of Richmond, which will make tonight, more or less, a VCU home game.

-- Working in their favor is the fact that they play an absolutely stifling defense in a style meant frustrate the living hell out of their opponents. Also working in the favor is the fact that Bruiser Flint is a mad man and allowed to walk 10 feet onto the floor the because no one has the courage to tell him otherwise. If either of these points make you think of John Chaney, then you agree with Bill Lyon.

Tip-off, again, is scheduled for 7 p.m. on ESPN.

We'll be back tomorrow to either celebrate the Dragons' autobid or to start worrying about whether they'll make the cut.

We'll also be back to set up the first rounds of the A-10 and Big East tournaments and Penn's matchup with Princeton for the opportunity to potentially play Harvard in a one-game playoff for the Ivy League's lone tournament bid.

Basketball. March. March. Basketball.

Drexel. Leggo.

Best of NBA: Jaylen Brown, Celtics use 5-point possession to top Pistons

Best of NBA: Jaylen Brown, Celtics use 5-point possession to top Pistons

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Jaylen Brown sank a 3-pointer from the right corner while being fouled with 37.6 seconds remaining, part of a five-point possession for Boston that lifted the Celtics to a 104-98 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Sunday night.

The Celtics were down 96-95 when Brown connected while being fouled by Marcus Morris. Brown missed the ensuing free throw, but Detroit couldn't come up with the rebound, and Tobias Harris was called for a loose-ball foul. Marcus Smart added two free throws to put Boston up 100-96.

Isaiah Thomas led the Celtics with 33 points. Andre Drummond had 17 points and 15 rebounds for the Pistons, but he went 1 of 11 on free throws and was taken out for some key possessions toward the end to prevent Boston from fouling him.

Lakers crushed by Spurs in first home game since front office shakeup
LOS ANGELES -- Kawhi Leonard scored 25 points and the San Antonio Spurs routed the Lakers 119-98 on Sunday in Los Angeles' first home game since Magic Johnson took over the franchise's basketball operations.

LaMarcus Aldridge had 16 points for the Spurs, who have won four straight and nine of 11.

Pau Gasol added 15 points against his former team, and the Southwest Division leaders had little trouble with the Lakers, who have lost four straight and 15 of 19.

Five days after owner Jeanie Buss put Johnson in charge of basketball operations, the Lakers' dismal season still hasn't changed much, although new Lakers acquisitions Corey Brewer and Tyler Ennis got limited playing time.

Rookie Brandon Ingram scored a season-high 22 points as the Lakers fell to 19-41, ensuring their fourth consecutive non-winning season (see full recap).

Antetokounmpo scores 28 as Bucks hold off Suns
MILWAUKEE -- Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 28 points, Tony Snell made a clinching 3-pointer from the corner in the closing seconds and the Milwaukee Bucks held off the Phoenix Suns, 100-96 on Sunday.

Michael Beasley added 17 points and Malcolm Brogdon had 15 as the Bucks swept the two-game season series with the Suns. Greg Monroe finished with 14 points and Snell had 13.

TJ Warren led the Suns with 23 points. Alan Williams scored a career-high 17 points and tied his season high with 15 rebounds, while Devin Booker added 15 points and Eric Bledsoe had 11.

Clinging to a one-point lead, the Bucks came out of timeout with Monroe inbounding the ball to Antetokounmpo. He dribbled the clock down before passing to Brogdon, who whipped the ball to Snell in the corner. Snell hit a 3 with a defender flying at him.

NHL trade notes: Kings get Bishop from Lightning, Wild land Hanzal from Coyotes

NHL trade notes: Kings get Bishop from Lightning, Wild land Hanzal from Coyotes

LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Kings acquired goalie Ben Bishop from the Tampa Bay Lightning on Sunday in a trade including goalie Peter Budaj and an exchange of draft picks.

The Kings will pair Bishop with Jonathan Quick in a remarkable veteran goaltending tandem down the stretch of the regular season. Quick returned only Saturday from a 59-game absence with a serious groin injury.

The Kings gave up Budaj, junior defenseman Erik Cernak, a 2017 seventh-round pick and another conditional pick. Los Angeles received Bishop and Tampa Bay's 2017 fifth-round pick.

Both teams are scrapping to get into playoff position over the next six weeks. The Kings (30-27-4) are just outside the second wild-card berth in the Western Conference, while the Lightning (27-25-8) are seven points back of a playoff spot (see full story).

Report: Wild get Martin Hanzal from Coyotes
A person with knowledge of the trade says the Minnesota Wild have acquired Czech center Martin Hanzal from the Arizona Coyotes.

The person spoke to The Associated Press Sunday on condition of anonymity because the deal had not been announced. Details on the return to Arizona were not immediately available.

Hanzal was considered one of the top rental players available ahead of Wednesday's NHL trade deadline. The 30-year-old pending unrestricted free agent has 16 goals and 10 assists in 51 games this season and 313 points in 608 NHL games, all with the Coyotes.

The move signals an aggressive approach from the Wild, who lead the Central Division and Western Conference by three points over the Chicago Blackhawks.