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Mitch's Sports Report: Washington Loses Control Of Its Playoff Destiny With Miscues Against Panthers

In Monday Night Football, two teams with varying degrees of playoff hopes met in Landover, Maryland last night, and one came away with their long shot post-season hopes still alive, the other veering from a self-controlled path to a playoff berth due largely to their own mistakes.

The Carolina Panthers pounced on an interception by Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins and then a fumble at Washington's own goal line to start the second half, a ball also given away by Cousins, that led to a quick Panthers touchdown and a 20-9 lead that they would not give up in an ultimate 26-15 Carolina victory. Washington controlled its own playoff destiny until the loss last night. They could have made the post-season by winning their last three games but now at 7-6-1 will need help from other teams to get in. The Panthers are still in the hunt, albeit on the fringes of that chase with six wins and eight losses. Cam Newton, the league's reigning MVP, threw for 300 yards and two touchdowns to keep those slim hopes alive.

In the NHL tonight the Boston Bruins finish up a three-game homestand against the NY Islanders, who are mired in a five-game losing skid and at the bottom of the eastern conference just one season after making the playoffs and winning a first round match up against the Florida Panthers. The Bruins will be playing heir second game without their leading scorer David Pastrnak, as he continues a recovery from elbow surgery to have a bursa sac removed.

The Montreal Canadiens will also be in action tonight, hosting the Anaheim Ducks at the Bell Centre. The Ducks are 2-2 so far on a six game east coast road trip, while Les Habitants are coming off a win against the Washington Capitals.

In Raleigh, North Carolina last night the hgame between the Carolina Hurricanes and Detroit Red Wings had to be postponed due to unplayable ice conditions. Not because it was so hot in Raleigh that the ice inside the building melted, but because a freon leak in the cooling system at the PNC arena was discovered too late before the puck dropped. Carolina GM Ron Francis said he'd never seen a game postponed due to a broken seal in a compressor. They couldn't delay the start of the game because NHL rules state no game can start less than 22 hours before a team's next scheduled contest and the Red Wings have a date with Tampa Bay tonight at 730. And really, isn't this just really a sign that the NHL should move this franchise from Carolina to Quebec and bring back the Nordiques already? Si Vous Plait?

The St. Michael's Purple Knights mens' basketball team hung tough in their first ever meeting with Daemen College in New York last night, and trailed by just four points with less than eight minutes to go in the game, but the Wildcats went on a 21-2 run after that and pulled away with a 92-69 victory. Matt Bonds had 20 points to lead the Purple Knights, the 8th time this year he's recorded at least 20 in a game. Daemen's Darius Garvin led all scorers with 22 as the Wildcats improve to 7-4 on the season and St. Mike's sits at 1-9.

A graduate of NYU with a Master's Degree in journalism, Mitch has more than 20 years experience in radio news. He got his start as news director at NYU's college station, and moved on to a news director (and part-time DJ position) for commercial radio station WMVY on Martha's Vineyard. But public radio was where Mitch wanted to be and he eventually moved on to Boston where he worked for six years in a number of different capacities at member station a Senior Producer, Editor, and fill-in co-host of the nationally distributed Here and Now. Mitch has been a guest host of the national NPR sports program "Only A Game". He's also worked as an editor and producer for international news coverage with Monitor Radio in Boston.
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