How to Navigate TV’s Greatest Sports Weekend Ever

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Spring has sprung. The lawn needs mowing. The grill needs cleaning.

Oh, it's going to be beautiful out this weekend across most of the country with sparking weather inviting you to take a run or a ride or a hike. But die-hard sports junkies may not be touched by a single drop of sunshine until Monday morning, as they hunker down with a Sizzler-sized smorgasbord of signature sporting events on national TV.


Sure, you could catch the highlights and have a social life, but these aren't just any games. It'll help to tell yourself that as the pizza boxes pile up, that what's going down this sedentary weekend has the makings of a legendary slate of sporting events. Just massive.

Beginning Thursday night and concluding in Monday's wee hours, sports fans will be bombarded by a steady stream big-time events that includes all four major American sports, the Kentucky Derby, and what's expected to be the biggest fight in Pay-Per-View history.

If you follow Keith Olbermann's lead and boycott the NFL Draft and the superfight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao in support of domestic violence victims, you'll still have plenty of stimulants to feed your sports addiction. Here's a closer look at all of the biggest games and events happening this weekend (all times Eastern):

THURSDAY

7 p.m. — NFL Draft | ESPN, NFL Network
The first of three straight days of coverage begins with the first round live from Chicago. More people tuned in for the draft last year than for Game 7 of the World Series, and with teams trading around to get their hands on Marcus Mariotta, this year's edition is likely to surpass Johnny Football's tumble last year. 

7 p.m. — NBA Playoffs | Chicago at Milwaukee: Game 6 | TNT
The young and confident Bucks are at home facing elimination. They will not go quietly.

7:30 p.m. — NHL Playoffs | Washington at NY Rangers: Game 1 | NBC Sports 
The second-round opener reacquaints Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist with Caps sniper Alex Ovechkin. New York is still disappointed it's not Rangers-Islanders.

9:30 p.m. — NBA Playoffs | LA Clippers at San Antonio: Game 6 | TNT
The Clippers are playing for their playoff lives on the road, and the Spurs are looking to continue their playoff dominance out West. Desperate basketball here.


FRIDAY

6 p.m. — NFL Draft | ESPN, NFL Network
The pace of picks get's a little crazier as the draft continues with Rounds 2 and 3, offering a few hours to learn about guys who will have a decent shot to make the team while you look past loved ones at the dinner table.

7 p.m. — NHL Playoffs | Tampa Bay at Montreal: Game 1 | NBC Sports 
Opening match of the series with Tampa coming off a Game 7 win against Detroit. Bolts sniper Steven Stamkos against Habs defenseman P.K. Subban highlights the matchup.

7:10 p.m. — MLB | Nationals at Mets | SNY
The game doesn’t quite have the heft of some of the other events on this list, but it does feature two of the best young pitchers in baseball. Flip over from the Draft to check out Mets ace Matt Harvey and Washington stud Max Scherzer duel at Citi Field.

8 p.m. — NBA Playoffs | Atlanta at Brooklyn: Game 6 | ESPN
Desperate hours for the Nets, who are fighting to keep their season alive at home.

9:30 p.m. — NHL Playoffs | Minnesota at Chicago: Game 1 | NBC Sports 
Opening game of the second-round series between Western Conference rivals. Translation: Somebody draws first blood here.

SATURDAY

11 a.m. — NFL Draft | ESPN, NFL Network
Enjoy brunch while your favorite NFL team looks for special teamers and practice squad reinforcements. For those playing drinking games, take a shot every time former sixth-round pick Tom Brady's name is mentioned during the broadcast.

12:30 p.m. — NHL Playoffs | Washington at NY Rangers: Game 2 | NBC
Turn up the volume so you don't have to listen to the sounds of your neighbors being more productive than you.

6:24 p.m. — The Kentucky Derby | NBC
"The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports" returns with a fast and furious field led by 5-2 favorite American Pharoah running out of post 18. Feel free to put on a jacket, mix a mint julep, and marvel at the speed of these thoroughbreds. Check here for updated betting odds. 

6:26 p.m. — Call your mom/significant other to remind them you're alive. 
The race is over. You should have just enough time for this before the pizza guy returns.

9 p.m. — The Mayweather-Pacquiao Fight | Pay Per View
The undercard starts at 9 p.m. and walkouts for the main event aren't expected until midnight. But after all the hype, all the press conferences, and all media hits, Mayweather and Pacquiao will finally get to fight. Just prepare for a late night.

SUNDAY

3:30 p.m. — NBA Playoffs | Memphis at Golden State: Game 1 | ABC
It's time to appreciate the greatness of Steph Curry and the Splash Brothers.

6 p.m. — NHL Playoffs | Tampa Bay at Montreal: Game 2 | NBC Sports 
The teams will get a little meaner after someone takes the series lead in game one.

8:30 p.m. — NHL Playoffs | Minnesota at Chicago: Game 2 | NBC Sports 
See above.

10 p.m. — NHL Playoffs | Calgary at Anaheim: Game 2 | CNBC
In case the first game wasn’t nasty enough, these two rugged teams will take it up a level for this one. If not, Silicon Valley is on instead.