Tuesday Top Tens: April 14

Every Tuesday this season,  I’ve been posting 3 sets of power rankings: my college hoops top 10, my top 10 NBA teams, and a ranking of something unrelated. 

Let’s take a look at my final college rankings, the NBA right before the playoffs, and some other fun stuff.

College Hoops

Top Tier

1. Duke

2. Wisconsin

3. Kentucky

I can’t believe I’m putting Kentucky third, but can you blame me? Sure, they only lost once, but if they played Wisconsin in a 7 game series, who would you take?

Second Tier

4. Gonzaga

5. Virginia

6. Villanova

7. Arizona

If you replayed this season over and over, the top tier wins the championship about 75 percent of the time. This tier wins about 20 percent and the rest of the field steals 1 in 20. If Justin Anderson never gets hurt…if Villanova doesn’t go ice cold…if Kyle Wiltjer makes a layup…if Stanley Johnson plays like himself in the tournament….if if if.

Third Tier

8. Notre Dame

9. Utah

10. Michigan State

Also Considered: Kansas, Oklahoma, Louisville

At this point, separating regular season successes and failures from tournament performance isn’t easy. I think the Utes and the Irish both advance even further if they don’t run into two of the best teams in the nation.


1. Golden State

2. San Antonio

3. Cleveland

4. Atlanta

5. Memphis

6. LA Clippers

7. Houston

8. Portland

9. Dallas

10. Chicago

Also Considered: Toronto, New Orleans

I haven’t ranked anyone but Golden State first all season. We’re sleeping on how good they are. I don’t just think they are the favorites to win the title. I think they do so fairly easily. The only team in the league who can even take them to 7 games is the Spurs, and they may never get their crack at the Dubs.

Game of Thrones moments

I had to pick something Game of Thrones themed for this weeks rankings. It’s the best show on TV and it’s finally back. Ranking the best characters is the easy way out. Best episodes or scenes would be too hard, so I hedged between them. These are the best moments in the history of the show. I used the word “moment” liberally, but I stand by what’s below.

Warning: Spoilers, violence, and language ahead. Beware.

Also Considered: Tyrion’s speech while on trial, Daenerys at the House of Undying, the White Walker at the end of season 2, Jamie tossing Bran out a window, Jon’s mini-funeral for Ygritte, THIS, when Jon Snow “proved he knew a little something” so to speak, Bronn fighting as Tyrion champion at the Eyrie, every time Tyrion slapped Joffrey

10. Jon and Bran at Craster’s Keep

bran crasters

Shoved aside by the bigger events of season 4, this episode has a surprising amount of greatness. Jon dominating the mutineers, Bran warging into Hodor’s body and beating the crap out of people, this handy little maneuver, and the heartbreaking moment when Bran has to chose not to speak with his brother.

9. The Dragons Hatching (End of Season 1)


I try not to be the guy who just watches the show for the stupid fun stuff but…DRAGONS!

8. The Battle at Blackwater (Tyrion’s Speech)

Half man! Half man!

7. The Moon Door

Littlefinger turns his swag on, made endlessly cooler by the word “Moon Door”. Every house in America needs a Moon Door.

6. The Golden Crown


RIP Drogo. His version of heaven probably involves punching dinosaurs and eating lava.

5. Daenerys And Her Dragons Acquire the Unsullied

Sure, our girl Khalessi’s emancipation movement across Slaver’s Bay gets boring from time to time, but that just sets up awesome moments like this one.

4. The Purple Wedding


I miss Joffrey. He was one of the most evil characters in the history of television, film, literature, and recorded human history.

He was what hooked me into the show. Hating him made figuring everyone else’s name worthwhile.

His death did not disappoint. The week following I exchanged countless texts with friends surmising who may have been behind it.

3. The Mountain vs. The Viper


Has a television character ever become a fan favorite as quickly as Oberyn Martell?

His final moments were so suspenseful and so shocking. I can’t ask all of you to stomach them again…but you really should.

2. Oh, Ned Stark…


I wanted so badly for this to be #1. I mean, look at Joffrey’s face up there!

So shocking. So jaw dropping. So mind rattling. And yet…

1. The Red Wedding

red wed

It took hours for me to close my jaw after watching this episode. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t comprehend it. I still can’t.

And I’m sure you agree with all of this, so there’s no reason to comment on this post…

Shane McNichol is the founder, editor, and writer at PalestraBack.com. He has also contributed to SALTMoney.org and ESPN.com. Follow him on Twitter @OnTheShaneTrain.

If you have any suggestions, tips, ideas, or questions, email them to palestraback@gmail.com.

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