The Stack is here today talking basketball both college and pros so let's get right to it and see what made "the stack" for today, Friday, February 22:
NBA trade deadline passes
The NBA trade deadline came and went at 3 PM ET Thursday with a big thud as no big names being traded. Josh Smith is still an Atlanta Hawk. Dwight Howard is still a member of the Lakers. Kevin Garnett is still bleeding Celtic green. It is very surprising that not one big player was moved. You figured Howard would remain a Laker given the insistence of Lakers management that Howard is an integral part of the Lakers future. Many people doubt Howard will stay with the Lakers after the season so why wouldn't the Lakers try and get something for him? Kobe Bryant thinks the Lakers still have a shot to make the playoffs. They've played better as of late, but it is still going to be very tough to get to the postseason.
The most surprising player not moved by the trade deadline is Josh Smith. There have been reports for weeks that the Hawks were looking to trade him. They didn't do anything. Will they try to sign him to a longterm deal in the offseason now? Where is his mental state at? The Hawks did make one minor move getting Dahntay Jones from the Dallas Mavericks for Anthony Morrow. Perhaps the Hawks will keep Smith for a while now. The rest of the deals can be found here. What team in your mind helped themselves the most? What team hurt themselves?
The final year of Bracketbusters is upon us where the folks at ESPN broadcast several games featuring teams from the non-BCS conferences, giving you a look at the teams that may win a game in the NCAA tournament and...bust your brackets. This year there are a few matchups that really stand out. The best one is Creigton at St. Mary's on Saturday (6 PM ET ESPN). This matchup will features perhaps the best player in the game in Doug McDermott (Creighton) and an exciting player in St. Mary's guard Matthew Dellavedova. Creighton has been really struggling as of late. They absolutely need a quality win over a team like St. Mary's. That game should be a lot of fun. Right now, I'm leaning St. Mary's.
Arguably the second best game of Bracketbusters weekend is South Dakota State @ Murray State on Saturday (8 PM ET ESPN2). This game has two of the best point guards in the country in South Dakota State's Nate Wolters and Murray State's Isaiah Canaan. NBA scouts will be all over this game. The Jackrabbits found a way to lose to UC Santa Barbara Wednesday night, but in a big game like this, I think they can get by Murray State. Edge right now: SDSU.
The final game of Bracketbuster weekend, Ohio @ Belmont (10 PM ET ESPN2) shouldn't be overlooked either. Belmont is a really fun team to watch and Ohio was a terror in the tournament last year making it to the Sweet 16.
Full schedule of games for Saturday, including all Bracketbuster matchups can be found here.
Daytona 500 preview
I'll make this short and sweet. While it would be an amazing story to Danica Patrick win, I don't think she will. Just because she has the pole position doesn't make her the favorite. Her average finish in a race is 28th. She needs to prove she can win a race in the NASCAR series before I pick her. Jeff Gordon is a decent choice as is Tony Stewart or Jimmie Johnson, but why not pick last year's winner Brad Keslowksi. NASCAR's Super Bowl of racing main event takes place Sunday and it should be a good race.
Before I go, shout out to Baltimore Ravens center Matt Birk who retired today from the NFL after fifteen years. Finally won his Super Bowl with the Ravens this year. Congrats on a stellar career Matt. Oh yeah, and he went to Harvard.
Coming up Monday: Reaction from biggest sports stories/results over the weekend