Posted on: May 4th, 2011 by Jen Mueller

It’s an emotional week across the United States as the country celebrates the news that Osama bin Laden is dead. I was on a plane with the Mariners heading back from Boston when I heard the news. It spread quickly through the players and staff. We talked, dissected the news and listened anxiously for more details. It’s a moment I’ll never forget. The same thing happened en masse during the Sunday night game on ESPN. The crowd broke out into cheers of “U-S-A, U-S-A” as the news spread. It’s one of those moments where a sporting event helps to cement our bond together, and allows us to celebrate and express our emotions with others. It’s one of those times when you’re reminded that a fan sitting next to you, is more than a just a fan.

It’s why I highly recommend engaging in sports conversations. Here are a few ideas to get you started this week. Of course you could always start with “What did you think about the fan response to the bin Laden news Sunday night?”

NFL – It’s time to play Monday Morning Quarterback. The draft was held over the weekend. Auburn Quarterback Cam Newton went #1 overall to the Carolina Panthers. He was embroiled in controversy during his college career. Was it a good pick for the Panthers? What to you think about your team’s selections?

NFL – The NFL labor issues still haven’t been resolved the players were allowed back into their facilities Friday, but then the lockout resumed. It’s a temporary lockout right now, but the league has filed a full stay until the appeal is resolved. The court’s reaction could determine the fate of the season. How do you think the issue to be resolved? Do you have a sense as to which way the court is going to go?

NBA – The playoffs roll on. Here are your second round matchups:  Miami vs. Boston, Oklahoma City vs. Memphis, Atlanta vs. Chicago, Dallas vs. LA Lakers

All eyes are on the Miami/Boston series because it will show just how far LeBron James and crew have come this season. But a Heat win would give LeBron a little revenge after losing to Boston when he was a member of the Cavaliers. Which match-up do you like best? Who are you rooting for?

NHL – If you aren’t a hockey fan, now would be a great time to start watching games. The NHL playoffs have delivered plenty of excitement and drama. The remaining match-ups are: Boston vs. Philadelphia, Detroit vs. San Jose, Nashville vs. Vancouver, Tampa Bay vs. Washington. Here’s a great article on how to choose a remaining team to root for. What to you think of the match-ups? Who has the edge at this point in the playoffs?

MLBAndre Ethier of the LA Dodgers has strung together a 27 game hitting streak. It is the second longest streak in club history, he is 5 shy of breaking the franchise record. What’s the most impressive feat you’ve seen during the first month of baseball?