Cat Coronation … Kentucky stops Kansas 67-59 for NCAA title

Kentucky rolls through The Big Dance to claim their 8th National Championship, Votto gets reported 10-year $225 million dollar extension

The Kentucky Wildcats are the 2011-2012 Men’s College Basketball National Champs, beating Kansas 67-59 in the National Championship final Monday in New Orleans. After a briefing feeling out period that saw the score tied at 7-7 after four minutes, the Wildcats went on a 32-14 run for all intensive purposes putting the game away. The Jayhawks, down 41-27 at the half, made one of their patented late runs but could get no closer than five. Kentucky HC John Calipari won his first championship in his fourth visit to the Final Four exacting some measure of revenge from Kansas coach Bill Self who beat Cal and his Memphis Tigers in this game in 2008.

Player of the Year and Wooden Award winner Anthony Davis couldn’t buy a basket from the field but dominated in other areas finally finishing with a 6 point, 16 rebound, 5 assist, 6 block stat line. Davis added the Final Four Most Outstanding Player award to his trophy case. Doron Lamb was KU’s best player on Monday sinking dagger three after dagger three whenever Kansas got too close. Lamb finished with 22 points. Kansas was led by Tyshawn Taylor’s 19 points led Kansas, Jayhawk All-American Thomas Robinson has a very quiet 18 points and 17 rebounds. Taylor had missed all 20 of three-point shots in the tournament before knocking one down midway through the second half.

The Ladies College Basketball National Championship will be decided tonight in Denver as undefeated (39-0) Baylor takes on Notre Dame. The Bears are six point favorites over the Irish and the total is 136 1/2. Baylor could be the first college basketball team of any kind to win 40 games.

Road teams go 5-1 on Monday’s abbreviated six-game card

Monday’s NBA visitors proved to be rude guests as the intruders went 5-1 SU and ATS on a card that included upsets of Conference leaders Chicago and Oklahoma City. The Bulls, still playing without Derrick Rose, were beat by Houston 99-93 snapping a one-year 86 game streak without back-to-back losses. Luis Scola had 18/12 for the Rockets, Carlos Boozer 16/13 for the Bulls. The Thunder saw their six-game winning streak snapped by the Memphis as OJ Mayo came off the bench to lead the Grizz with 22 points. OKC was unable to overcome 18 costly turnovers. Milwaukee kept its slim playoff hopes alive with a win at Washington. The Clippers are on a six-game winning streak for the first time in 20 years after a 93-73 spanking of the Mavs in Dallas. Randy Foye tied the Clipper franchise record with eight trifectas. Utah continued their hot play and the Kings were the lone team to defend home court.

Kings regain lead in the Pacific, Caps busted in Tampa Bay

There were just two games on Monday’s frozen pond schedule but both games had major playoff implications. Steve Stamkos scored twice in the final two minutes, his 57th and 58th goals, to lead Tampa Bay to a 4-2 win over the Washington Capitals. The Cap loss opens the door for the Buffalo Sabres who trail Washington by two points for the eighth and final playoff spot in the East with two games left in the regular season. Los Angeles blanked Edmonton 2-0, Jamie Quick pitching a 19 save shutout. The Kings reclaimed top spot in the Pacific Division, two points ahead on Phoenix, three points ahead of San Jose, and four points ahead of Dallas. Phoenix and San Jose each have a game in hand.

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Two big extensions highlighted Monday’s MLB news. The Giants locked up Matt Cain for an additional five years at $112.5 million. That makes Cain the highest paid right-handed pitcher in baseball and third overall behind CC Sabathia and Johann Santana. The Reds have agreed to terms on a ten-year $225 million dollar extension with Joey Votto. The deal would have Cincinnati committed to Votto for $251 million over the next 12 years.

Free Plays

(WCBB National Championship) Baylor -6 over Notre Dame

(NBA) San Antonio -9 over Cleveland)

(NBA) NY Knicks +6 over Indiana

(NHL) Winnipeg/Florida Over 5