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Big East Tournament Breakdown and Schedule

New York City is hosting the Big East this week, starting tomorrow, Tuesday, March 8th at Madison Square Garden. Pittsburgh, Notre Dame, Louisville and others will face each other in a seriously competitive conference.

The Big East has garnered a lot of attention this year with a record nine teams ranked in the top 25.  Two Top 20 Teams will be featured in the first round.  ESPN’s Joe Lunardi and other experts let it be known that they expect that 11 of the conference’s 16 teams will make the NCAA tournament.  Not bad odds, eh?  The Big East features the strongest strength of schedule, the highest RPI  and non-conference wins over Duke, Purdue, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Kentucky, Michigan State among other big names.

UConn and DePaul get the ball rolling tomorrow at lunchtime.  St. John’s Red Storm plays on Wednesday, which should not go unmentioned, have won by double digits at MSG against Duke, Conneticut and Notre Dame and have also had home court wins over Georgetown and Pittsburgh.  Head coach, Steve Lavin, has truly done an outstanding job with St. John this year.    Top ranked Pitt, Notre Dame, Louisville and Syracuse all have byes and will compete on Thursday.  The Big East Tournament will conclude on Saturday.

Below are the current complete Big East Standings:

Complete Big East standings are below:

1. Pittsburgh 15-3

2. Notre Dame 14-4

3. Louisville 12-6

4. Syracuse 12-6

5. St. John’s 12-6

6. West Virginia 11-7

7. Cincinnati 11-7

8. Georgetown 10-8

9. Connecticut 9-9

10. Villanova 9-9

11. Marquette 9-9

12. Seton Hall 7-11

13. Rutgers 5-13

14. Providence 4-14

15. South Florida 3-15

16. DePaul 1-17

The Schedule is as follows:

2011 Big East Tournament – First Round – March 8th, 2011

#16 Dep vs #9 UCONN 12:00 PM ESPN2
#13 Rutgers vs #12 HALL 2:00 PM ESPN2
#10 Villanova vs #15 USF 7:00 PM ESPN U
#11 Marquette vs #14 Seed 9:30 PM

Big East Tournament 2011 – Second Round – March 9th, 2011

#8 Georgetown vs #16/9 winner 12:00 PM ESPN
#5 St. John’s vs #13/12 winner 2:00 PM ESPN
#7 Cincy vs #10/15 winner 7:00 PM ESPN
#6 WVU vs #11/14 winner 9:00 PM ESPN

2011 Big East Tournament  – Quarterfinals – March 10th, 2011

#1 Pittsburgh – #8/9/16 winner   12:00 PM ESPN
#4 Syracuse- #5/12/13 winner 2:00 PM ESPN
#2 Notre Dame – #7/10/15 winner 7:00 PM ESPN
#3 Louisville  v #6/11/14 winner 9:00 PM ESPN

2011 Big East Tournament – Semifinals – March 11th, 2011

2011 Big East Semifinals Game 1 7:00 PM ESPN
2011 Big East Semifinals Game 2 9:00 PM ESPN

Big East Tournament 2011 – Championship – March 12th, 2011

2011 Big East Basketball Tournament Championship 9:00 PM ESPN

March Madness 2011 – The Schedule!

final fourThe smell of spring is in the air, and that can only mean one thing.  March Madness is around the corner.  The 2011 NCAA Tournament tips off on the 15th of March (aka the Ides of March).  The tournament is a bit different again this year as the field has expanded once again.  After the 31 automatic bids, 37 at-large bids will join the automatic bids in the 2011.  The previous expansion added a 65th team and introduced a so-called “play-in” game , which pits the two lowest seeded teams against  each other for the opportunity to play the top overall seed. That game has now been removed and three more teams have been added to the field – bringing the total to 68 overall Field of 68 marking 2011 as the first season with 68 teams in the NCAA Tournament.

The NCAA Tournament Championship game will be on April 4th, 2011 taking place at the Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas.

It is also worthy of note, that EVERY game will be broadcasted this year on TV,  not just what CBS thinks we want to watch.  Super.   March Madness games will also be available on TBS, TNT, and truTV.

2011 NCAA Tournament schedule

  • March 13 – 2011 NCAA Tournament Selection Sunday
  • March 15 & 16 – First Four/Play-in game(s) @ University of Dayton Arena, Dayton, OH
  • March 17, 18, 19 & 20 – First & Second round games
  • March 24, 25, 26 & 27 – Sweet 16 & Elite 8
    • SOUTHWEST REGIONAL: Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas (Host: University of Texas at San Antonio)
    • WEST REGIONAL: Honda Center, Anaheim, California (Host: Big West Conference)
    • SOUTHEAST REGIONAL: Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana (Host: Tulane University)
    • EAST REGIONAL: Prudential Center, Newark, New Jersey (Host: Seton Hall University)
  • April 2 & 4 – Final Four
    • Reliant Stadium, Houston, TX – co-hosted by Rice University and the University of Houston

 

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2010-11 NBA Western Conference Northwest Division Preview

Oklahoma City Thunder  Tickets

Kevin Durant and the OKC Thunder will be looking to take their game to the next level this season!

The NBA’s Western Conference, Northeast Division has to be considered one of the best with 4 of the 5 teams likely headed to the playoffs once again.  The Kevin Durant led OKC Thunder, will likely lead the pack but will be challenged by the Denver Nuggets (if Carmelo stays) and a young Portland Trail Blazer team.  Even the dependable Utah Jazz could end up winning this division.

#1 Oklahoma City Thunder

Additions: Cole Aldrich, Morris Peterson, Daequan Cook

Subtractions: Etan Thomas

The Oklahoma City Thunder seemingly came out of nowhere last year and be a dominant force in the NBA.  Kevin Durant is a beast and will only get better.  Fans in OKC are also excited to see what young talented players like Serge Ibaka and James Harden can bring to the table with increased minutes.

Ticket Demand:  B

The OKC Thunder are an exciting young team with a NBA superstar in Kevin Durant.  Ticket demand would be an A+ is this team was in a major market that had a history with the NBA.  Be that as it may, OKC fans should be intrigued by this team.

#2 Denver Nuggets

Additions: Al Harrington, Shelden Williams

Subtractions: Malik Allen, Joey Graham, Johan Petro

As long as Carmelo Anthony is still a member, the Denver Nuggets will be one of the top teams in the Western Conference.  Along with “melo, the Nuggets also have solid pieces in place with Nene, Harrington, and Chauncey Billups.  That said, the core of this team is not getting any younger and are likely on the decline.

Ticket Demand:  B+

The Nuggets have one of the most exciting players in the NBA in Carmelo Anthony (for the time being) but Denver is not exactly the best basketball market.

#3 Portland Trail Blazers

Additions: Wesley Matthews

Subtractions: Juwan Howard, Martell Webster, Luke Babbitt, Armon Johnson

The Portland Trail Blazers could be one of the teams that improve the most this season.  They have one of the best guards in the NBA with Brandon Roy to go along with a stellar power forward in LaMarcus Aldridge.  If Greg Oden can stay healthy and live up to his enormous potential, the NBA Finals are not out of the question.

Ticket Demand:  B+

The Trail Blazers have a young and exciting team in a fairly large market. If the Blazers take a step forward this year as we expect, tickets could be in big demand.

#4 Utah Jazz

Additions: Al Jefferson, Raja Bell, Francisco Elson

Subtractions: Carlos Boozer, Kyle Korver, Wesley Matthews, Kosta Koufos

It seems the Utah Jazz lose key players year after year but somehow Jerry Sloan keeps putting together playoff caliber teams.  Sloan should once again be able to surround Deron Williams and Andrei Kirilenko with a solid support casting that will once again be consistently good.

Ticket Demand:  B-

The Utah Jazz have perhaps the best point guard in the game with Deron Williams but Salt Lake City is a subpar basketball market and are not expected to contend for a NBA title.

#5 Minnesota Timberwolves

Additions:  Wesley Johnson, Michael Beasley, Martell Webster, Luke Ridnour

Subtractions: Ramon Sessions, Al Jefferson, Ryan Gomes

The Timberwolves have been cellar dwellars since Kevin Garnett left the team and its hard to imagine things changing much this season.  That said, the Timberwolves acquired former 1st round pick Michael Beasley and if he ever turns out to be the player everyone thought he could be they future might be just a little brighter.  Apparently has cleaned up his act and is more focused – only time will tell.

Ticket Demand:  C+

Minnesota hasn’t had much to be excited about in some time and that is clearly reflected in their ticket demand.  If Beasley can become a star, things might look up a bit but the Timberwolves will have a hard time giving away tickets.

2010-11 NBA Eastern Conference Atlantic Division Preview

Amare Stoudamire New York Knicks

Amare Stoudamire and the New York Knicks will be looking to Challenge an aging Boston Celtics Team.

In part 3 of our 2010 NBA season preview we will be taking a look at the Atlantic Division. Unlike the other divisions in the Eastern Conference, the Atlantic is pretty much up for grabs.  While the Boston Celtics are certainly still the cream of the crop they are aging fast with Garnett, Pierce, and Allen all getting a little long in the tooth.  After the Celtics, it’s anyone’s guess as to who will step up and challenge them.  The New Jersey Nets, Philadelphia 76ers, and New York Knicks all looked improved but neither of them are likely to put much of a scare into any team.  However, if the aging Celtics take a step backwards Amare Stoudamire and the new look Knicks might just be ready to fill the void.

#1 Boston Celtics

Key Additions: Shaquille O’Neal, Jermaine O’Neal, Von Wafer, Delonte West

Key Subtractions: Tony Allen, Shelden Williams

The Celtics cornered the market on the O’Neal’s this summer by acquiring both Shaquille and Jermaine.  While both players have seen better days, the combination will allow them to split minutes and stay fresh all season long.  The Celtics made the NBA Finals last season and should be an improved team if they can stay healthy with 2 legitimate big men on the team.  If they do stay healthy they could give the Miami Heat a run for their money come the post-season.

Ticket Demand:  A-

The Boston Celtics have a great team, play in a great sports market, and have some of the biggest names in the NBA on their roster.  That said, the teams age and anticipated decline is likely to leave fans complacent.

#2 New York Knicks

Key Additions:  Amar’e Stoudemire, Raymond Felton, Anthony Randolph, Kelenna Azubuike, Ronny Turiaf, Roger Mason Jr.,Landry Fields

Key Subtractions: David Lee

The 2010-11 version of the New York Knicks is virtually unrecognizable from their 2009-10 version.  Although the Knicks failed to land one of the elite free agents, they did scoop up Amare Stoudemire and Raymond Felton.

Ticket Demand:  B+

The New York Knicks have one of the best fan bases in the NBA but lack of recent success has limited their ticket demand.  The Knicks should once again be competitive which means ticket interest should rise- especially for games against the Lakers, Celtics, and Heat.

#3 New Jersey Nets

Key Additions:  Travis Outlaw, Troy Murphy, Derrick Favors, Jordan Farmar, Anthony Morrow

Key Subtractions: Yi Jianlian, Courtney Lee, Chris Douglas-Roberts

The New Jersey Nets were absolutely terrible last year going just 12-70.  However the Nets core players are pretty solid with Devin Harris, Troy Murphy, and Brooke Lopez.  If Derrick Favors can develop into half of what Dwight Howard is this team might surprise some people and be a bubble playoff team.  If they can swing the deal to get Carmelo Anthony this team could be really dangerous!

Ticket Demand:  B-

The new Knick ownership group and vastly improved team should generate some buzz.  Should the Nets land Carmelo Anthony, Nets ticket will be in big time demand.

#4 Philadelphia 76ers

Key Additions:  Evan Turner, Spencer Hawes, Andres Nocioni

Key Subtractions: Samuel Dalembert, Willie Green, Rodney Carney

Some prognosticators are excited for this years 76ers team but not me.  While they have a solid head coach in Doug Collins, much of the optimism stems from rookie Evan Turner.  Many predict Turner will contend for rookie of the year honors.  While the 76ers are certainly a young and upcoming team, don’t expect them to push for a playoff spot just yet.

Ticket Demand:  C+

The 76ers fans certainly have more to be excited about this year with top pick Evan Turner bring his game to Philly but they still have a ways to go before they become a top ticket draw.

#5 Toronto Raptors

Key Additions:  Leandro Barbosa, Linas Kleiza, Julian Wright

Key Subtractions: Chris Bosh, Hedo Turkoglu, Antoine Wright

With Chris Bosh leaving and moving to Miami there is not much to be excited about for Toronto Raptors fans.  Is there anyone out there that can name any starters outside of Andrea Bargnani without cheating?

Ticket Demand:  D

Toronto has never been a big basketball city and you can’t expect that to change with no marketable players or identity.  This team will likely be on the 5 year lottery plan!

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2010-11 NBA East Southeast Division Preview

Disocunt Orlando Magic TicketsIn part 2 of our 2010 NBA Preview we will be taking a look at the NBA Eastern Conference Southeast Division. This is no doubt one of the best conferences in the NBA loaded with good young talent and mega-superstars.  Not only do you have the Miami Heat stacked with Lebron, Wade, and Bosh, but you also have strong Orlando Magic and  Atlanta Hawks teams.

#1.  Miami Heat

Additions:  Lebron James, Chris Bosh, Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Eddie House, Mike Miller, Juwan Howard

Subtractions:  Quentin Richardson, Jermaine O’Neal, and Michael Beasley

Overview:  The Miami Heat are the easy favorites to win the NBA title with the addition of Lebron James and Chris Bosh to Dwayne Wade’s team.  There are certainly questions about the rest of the Heat team and who will be the “Man” but any team with 3 legitimate superstars will be sure to contend for a title.  With every fan and NBA team gunning for them it should make for an interesting season.

Ticket Demand:   A+++

Although the Miami Heat are not in the greatest sports market, the presence of Lebron James and Chris Bosh with Wade has generated a tremendous amount of buzz.  Combine the star power with the fact that this team will likely contend for a NBA title and ticket demand can’t be any greater.

#2.  Orlando Magic

Additions:  Quentin Richardson, Chris Duhon, Daniel Orton

Subtractions:  Matt Barnes

Overview:  With all the hoopla surrounding the Miami Heat this season many people are forgetting about the talented team in Orlando.  The Magic also have star power in Dwight Howard, Rashard Lewis, and Vince Carter. The defending Southeast champs they will not hand over the crown easily.

Ticket Demand:   B+

Although Florida’s attention to basketball will be focused on Miami, fans in Orlando are excited about their chances as well.  Ticket demand for games against Miami should be huge!

#3.  Atlanta Hawks

Additions:  Josh Powell, Jordan Crawford

Subtractions:  None

Overview:  If you think the Orlando Magic are getting no respect in the Eastern Conference, have a look at the Atlanta Hawks.  The Hawks won 53 games last season and finished behind only the Cavs, who lost Lebron, and the Orlando Magic.  Joe Johnson and Josh Smith are back with a team that lost no one from last year and hope to build upon last year’s impressive season.

Ticket Demand:   B+

The NBA market in Atlanta is strong and with a solid team and marketable players like Joe Johnson and Josh Smith, ticket demand will be strong.

#4.  Washington Wizards

Additions:  John Wall, Kirk Hinrich, Trevor Booker, Yi Jianlian

Subtractions:  Randy Foye, Shaun Livingston, Mike Miller

Overview:  There is a lot of hype surrounding rookie John Wall and this team could be surprisingly good if Gilbert Arenas can adjust to being a shooting guard.  Expect some growing pains this season especially in a tough South East conference with several games against tough Miami, Orlando, and Atlanta teams

Ticket Demand:   B-

The Washington DC area is a strong sports market but interest has been low since the failed Jordan era ended.  Rookie John Wall will bring some excitement back to the Wizards franchise but they are likely a few years away from being a significant threat in the East.

#5.  Charlotte Bobcats

Additions:  Tyrus Thomas, Shaun Livingston, Matt Carroll, Eduardo Najera, Kwame Brown

Subtractions:  Raymond Felton, Tyson Chandler, Alexis Ajinca, Theo Ratliff

Overview:  When the most talked about player on the Bobcats squad is Chicago Bulls cast off Tyrus Thomas, you know you have problems. Bobcats fans will be looking for another lottery pick next summer.

Ticket Demand:   D+

North Carolina is certain a state with strong ties to basketball but this teams leaves little for fans to be excited about.  With no superstar players, a dismal team, and mediocre market, ticket demand for Bobcats games is expected to be low.

If you are looking for ticket to any NBA games this upcoming season be sure to check out the Ticket Lodge for all your NBA Basketball Ticket needs