Four Drivers Compete for NASCAR Cup Series Championship
Everything I learned about NASCAR, I learned from Talladega Nights, but that doesn't mean I'm not looking forward to today's Cup Series championship race today at Phoenix Raceway. Four drivers remain in the playoffs, and the highest finisher among those four takes home the crown. To quote the immortal words of Ricky Bobby: "If you ain't first, you're last."
Today also marks the final day of the MLS regular season, which features 13 matches brimming with playoff implications, and the start of the NWSL postseason. Oh, and there are a few NFL games, too.
Here's what I'm watching.
NASCAR Cup Series championship race
Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Kyle Larson and Martin Truex Jr. will compete for the NASCAR Cup Series championship in today's 312-lap race at Phoenix Raceway.
Elliott won the title last season with a victory at Phoenix, but Larson has been the best driver all season. He won the regular-season championship and has won four of the nine playoff races so far, including three of the last four.
While Elliott and Larson may have more recent success, Truex Jr. and Hamlin also bring championship experience to the oval. Truex Jr. has made the Championship 4 five times, including a title win in 2017, and Hamlin four times, though he has never finished higher than third.
3 p.m. ET, NBC, watch on fuboTV
- Alex Bowman Collides With Denny Hamlin, Wins at Martinsville Speedway (Michael Shapiro)
- Kyle Larson Win Is Overshadowed by Kevin Harvick–Chase Elliott Feud (Associated Press)
- Denny Hamlin Embraces Being a Driver, a Team Owner and a Girl Dad (Madeline Coleman)
- Green Bay Packers at Kansas City Chiefs | The Packers (7–1) will be without quarterback Aaron Rodgers after he tested positive for COVID-19. Green Bay must contend not only with the Chiefs (4–4) but also with the distraction created by Rodgers's deceit regarding his vaccination status. 4:25 p.m. ET, Fox, watch on fuboTV
- Tennessee Titans at Los Angeles Rams | The Titans (6–2) will be missing their star player, as running back Derrick Henry suffered a potentially season-ending foot injury in Tennessee's win against the Colts last week. They brought in Adrian Peterson to help carry the rushing load against the Rams (7–1). 8:20 p.m. ET, NBC, watch on fuboTV
- San Antonio Spurs at Oklahoma City Thunder | While the Spurs and Thunder have both struggled to start the season, Oklahoma City scored a 107–104 win against the Lakers in its most recent game, led by 28 points from Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. 7 p.m. ET, NBA TV, watch on fuboTV
- NJ/NY Gotham FC at Chicago Red Stars | The fourth-seeded Red Stars sets an NWSL record with its sixth straight postseason appearance. It will face fifth-seeded Gotham FC in the first of today's two NWSL quarterfinal games. A semifinal meeting with top-seeded Portland Thorns FC is on the line. 3 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network, watch on fuboTV
- North Carolina Courage at Washington Spirit | The North Carolina Courage clinched the sixth and final spot in the NWSL playoffs with the Houston Dynamo's loss to the Washington Spirit last Sunday. The winner of this match will face second-seeded OL Reign in the semifinals next week. 5:30 p.m. ET, Paramount+
New York Red Bulls at Nashville SC
The final day of the MLS regular season features 13 matches, including this high-stakes match. New York clinches an Eastern Conference playoff berth with a win or a tie; if it loses to Nashville SC, it needs serious help to sneak its way into the postseason.
Nashville has already secured a first-round home game but could finish as high as second and as low as fourth depending on today's matches. To get the second seed, it needs a better result than the Philadelphia Union, which faces New York City FC at the same time.
3:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, watch on fuboTV
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