NFL: Steelers at Browns
We really have a special treat with this game. Cleveland Browns and Pittsburgh Steelers have one of the best rivalries in football. Without any other season implications, these teams are constantly at each others’ throats and bring a special intensity to every matchup. However, we DO have season implications for this one. It’s the last game of the season and this game has immense playoff implications for both teams. Cleveland is trying to make the playoffs for the first time in like a billion years (give or take a few). I lived in Cleveland for a bit so I cannot emphasize enough how huge this would be for that city, and to one of the best fan bases in the NFL.
To make the playoffs, Cleveland needs a win OR an Indianapolis Colts loss OR a Miami win/Tennessee loss/Baltimore win. Indianapolis is not going to lose to the Jaguars. Tennessee will probably beat the Texans and the Miami v Buffalo game could go either way. So the most likely way the Browns can secure their playoff dreams is with a win. In my time as a Cleveland fan I tend to always come back to the same saying…”the Browns will always find a way to lose.” I really hope that it isn’t the case this time, for the sake of my Cleveland friends.
Now let’s look at Pittsburgh. The Steelers are 12-3. If they win and the Bills lose, the Steelers will have a bye for the first week of the playoffs, and home field advantage for any game except against the Chiefs during their playoff run. Playing at home is huge in the playoffs so they’ll be looking to secure that win against the Browns and hope that the Dolphins can upset the Bills.
It really is a crazy week in the NFL and the playoff picture has a ton of different possibilities. I’m excited to tune in to this game and see if the Browns secure their fate, or if Pittsburgh helps to crush Cleveland’s dreams once again. Tune in to this one at 1 pm on Sunday, January 3rd.
NBA: Milwaukee Bucks at Miami Heat
The NBA is back! For those of you who don’t care about the NFL or Premier League and have been waiting for basketball, welcome! Or if you just are excited to have another sport added back into the Entertainment of the Week mix, you’re welcome! Usually my games of choice have importance based off of league standings, but it’s too early in the season to care about positioning as most teams only have a couple games played and no one really looks at record too closely yet. Well, unless you’re a Magic or Kings fan in which case I hope the records so far are an indication of how your seasons will go, though I’m sorry to say…I doubt it. Anyway, Bucks v Heat. The Milwaukee Bucks have been pretty much the consensus best team in the East for a few years now, and the Miami Heat shocked the NBA world by cruising to the NBA finals last year. So I expect a hard-fought battle between these two Eastern Conference teams in order to show the rest of the NBA who the king of the East is. Some great athletes in this game so it should be a fun one. Tune in Wednesday, December 30th at 7:30 pm.
Premier League: Aston Villa at Manchester United
Honestly I can’t remember the last time at this point in the season that Manchester United AND Aston Villa were competing for top 4 positioning but it’s 2020 and here we are. Manchester United is one of those teams that if you’re not a fan of them you just can’t help but root against them as much as possible, as they spend so much money just to be a disappointment year after year. This game is a fun one because Aston Villa could make a huge statement by taking down a team that really is lucky at this point to be in 2nd place in the Premier League. A classic collapse from Tottenham and some spotty performances from Chelsea and Manchester City are really the only reason that Man U are still in the conversation. Aston Villa just won’t go away, and seem to be really pushing teams that they have no business pushing every week. I’m hoping for a nice low scoring upset here, maybe 2-1. My calls have been pretty good so far, but this one takes a bit more risk because Man U are expected to win at home at Old Trafford. To watch this one, tune in Friday January 1st at 3 pm, and hopefully you can start your new year off enjoying a Manchester United loss.
Netflix Movie of the Week: Casino Royale
Casino Royale is the first of the Daniel Craig era of James Bond films (the fifth is scheduled for next year), and kicked off his tenure as Bond with maybe his best. Craig brings a new type of Bond to the franchise with probably the most brutish Bond of them all, while still providing plenty of the classic suave, smooth-talking moments that all of his predecessors brought to the character. I was skeptical at first but by the end of the film I definitely saw Craig’s bond as one of my favorites (Pierce Brosnan will always be the face of James Bond for me, as I grew up in the 90s). If you haven’t seen it yet, do it. You won’t be disappointed. For those of you who have seen it I’m sure it’s been a while. There’s solid rewatchability in this film (is that a word?). Who’s your favorite Bond? Favorite bond villain? These are some of the best movie-related debates out there.