Sports photos of the week, Dec. 22

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By KELSEY DRISCOLL and MATT AVERNA
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Sports photos of the week, Dec. 22
A member of the St. Louis Rams is introduced before an NFL football game between the St. Louis Rams and the New York Giants, Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
MARRAKECH, MOROCCO - DECEMBER 17: Kearyn Baccus of WS Wanderers FC runs with the ball during the FIFA Club World Cup 5th place match between ES Setif and WS Wanderers FC at Le Grand Stade de Marrakech on December 16, 2014 in Marrakech, Morocco. (Photo by Lars Baron - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
Chicago Bears wide receiver Marquess Wilson (10) celebrates touchdown with Chicago Bears tackle Jordan Mills (67) during the second half of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints Monday, Dec. 15, 2014, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
Dallas Mavericks' Tyson Chandler (6), Jameer Nelson (14) and Dirk Nowitzki (41) defend New York Knicks' Amar'e Stoudemire (1) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2014, in New York. The Mavericks won 107-87. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
NORTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: (EDITOR'S NOTE: Image converted into Black and White). A silhouette of Northampton Saints practicing their lineouts during the Northampton Saints training session held at Franklin's Gardens on December 17, 2014 in Northampton, England. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)
Oakland Raiders wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins (85) catches a 50-yard pass in front of Buffalo Bills cornerback Aaron Williams during the first quarter of an NFL football game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
POKLJUKA, SLOVENIA - DECEMBER 19: (FRANCE OUT) Daniel Boehm of Germany competes during the IBU Biathlon World Cup Men's Sprint on December 19, 2014 in Pokljuka, Slovenia. (Photo by Stanko Gruden/Agence Zoom/Getty Images)
Bowling Green coach Dino Babers is dunked by players after Bowling Green won the Camellia Bowl NCAA college football game against South Alabama, 33-28, early Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014, in Montgomery, Ala. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart (36) dives as Minnesota Timberwolves forward Robbie Hummel picks up the loose ball during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Boston, Friday, Dec. 19, 2014. The Celtics defeated the Timberwolves 114-98. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
NORTH SHORE, HI - DECEMBER 19: Filipe Toled of Brasil placed equal 5th in the Billabong Pipe Masters in Memory of Andy Irons after placing second to his good friend and 2014 ASP World Champion Gabriel Medina of Brasil in the quarter finals on December 19, 2014 in North Shore, Hawaii. (Photo by Kelly Cestari/ASP via Getty Images)
DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - DECEMBER 17: Kidambi Srikanth of India in action against Kento Momota of Japan in the Mens Singles during day one of the BWF Destination Dubai World Superseries Finals at the Hamdan Sports Complex on December 17, 2014 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Christopher Lee/Getty Images for Falcon)
New York Rangers' Mats Zuccarello dives during the first period of an NHL hockey game against the Carolina Hurricanes in Raleigh, N.C., Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014. (AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)
Cleveland Cavaliers' Dion Waiters puts up a shot against Charlotte Hornets' Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (14) in the first half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Dec. 15, 2014, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan)
Sunderland's Steven Fletcher, right, vies for the ball with Newcastle United's Sammy Ameobi, left, during their English Premier League soccer match at St James' Park, Newcastle, England, Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Scott Heppell)
TOWCESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 18: Tom Messenger riding Legendary Hop is unseated at the last in The Free Tips Every Day On gg.com Handicap Steeple Chase at Towcester racecourse on December 18, 2014 in Towcester, England. (Photo by Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 21: Wide receiver Danny Amendola #80 of the New England Patriots is tackled by free safety Calvin Pryor #25 of the New York Jets in the first quarter during a game at MetLife Stadium on December 21, 2014 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 17: Nabil Bentaleb of Tottenham Hotspur celebrates scoring the opening goal during the Capital One Cup Quarter-Final match between Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United at White Hart Lane on December 17, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
JACKSONVILLE, FL - DECEMBER 18: Marcedes Lewis #89 of the Jacksonville Jaguars catches a touchdown pass during the second quarter of the game against the Tennessee Titans at EverBank Field on December 18, 2014 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images)
Los Angeles Kings goalie Jonathan Quick, right, goes after Arizona Coyotes right wing Shane Doan after an NHL hockey game, Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014, in Los Angeles. The Kings won 4-2. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Milwaukee Bucks' Khris Middleton, is picked up by teammate Brandon Knight (11) after scoring the game-winning basket against the Phoenix Suns after an NBA basketball game Monday, Dec. 15, 2014, in Phoenix. The Bucks won 96-94. (AP Photo/Matt York)
ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 16: Bruce Djite of United reacts after the FFA Cup Final match between Adelaide United and Perth Glory at Coopers Stadium on December 16, 2014 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images)
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 21: Luke Sarantos walks on a slackline as he highlines between two cliffs at Diamond Bay on December 21, 2014 in Sydney, Australia. Slacklining is a balance sport in which participants walk on a flat nylon webbing anchored between two points with the tension adjusted to allow for slack, providing an experience similar to that of walking on a trampoline. Highlining is a style of slacklining where the two anchor points are set up with significant elevation from the ground or water. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)
SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - DECEMBER 20: Deanna Lockett of Australia competes in the Ladies 3000M Semifinals during the ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating 2014/15 - Seoul at Mokdong Ice Rink on December 20, 2014 in Seoul, South Korea. (Photo by Chung Sung-Jun - ISU/ISU via Getty Images)
Nantes' French forward Yacine Bammou flips as he celebrates after scoring a goal during the French L1 football match Lorient (FCL) vs Nantes (FCN) on December 20, 2014 at the Moustoir stadium in Lorient, western France. AFP PHOTO / JEAN-SEBASTIEN EVRARD (Photo credit should read JEAN-SEBASTIEN EVRARD/AFP/Getty Images)
ORLANDO, FL - December 19: Jeremy Evans #40 of the Utah Jazz warms up before the game against the Orlando Magic on December 19, 2014 at Amway Center in Orlando, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2014 NBAE (Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images
MOSCOW, RUSSIA - DECEMBER 19 : Russian Olympic champions in synchronized swimming performs during the synchronised swimming show at the Olimpiysky Sports Complex in Moscow, Russia on December 19, 2014. (Photo by Sefa Karacan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
STATE COLLEGE, PA -DECEMBER 19: 285 pounder Jimmy Lawson of the Penn State Nittany Lions celebrates after winning his match in overtime on December 19, 2014 at Recreation Hall on the campus of Penn State University in State College, Pennsylvania. Penn State won 20-15. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
VAL D'ISERE, FRANCE - DECEMBER 19: (FRANCE OUT) Ambiance during the Audi FIS Alpine Ski World Cup Women's Downhill Training on December 19, 2014 in Val d'Isere, France. (Photo by Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom/Getty Images)
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Bowling Green players had no problem giving coach Dino Babers an absolutely frigid Gatorade bath to cap a Falcons' bowl win and contestants happily carved up the slopes at the Alpine Ski World Cup in the French Alps.

Meanwhile, Filipe Toled did some carving of his own, but in the brilliant surf of Hawaii's (much) sunnier climes.

On the field, the NFL playoff race featured some crunching tackles, while the rest of the world continues to celebrate its own version of the game of football.

From the skating track to the race track, plush arenas and towering mountains, it's all here. So enjoy the best photos from the week that was in sports.

And if you missed it, check out last week's collection in the gallery below.


26 PHOTOS
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Sports photos of the week, Dec. 22

Gael Monfils of the Indian Aces walks out for his teams match against the Manila Mavericks during the Coca-Cola International Premier Tennis League fourth leg at the Hamdan Sports Complex, December 12, 2014 in Dubai.

Photo Credit: Clive Brunskill, Getty Images

LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers battles Jerome Jordan #9, and Bojan Bogdanovic #44 of the Brooklyn Nets during their game at the Barclays Center on December 8, 2014 in New York City. 

Photo Credit: Al Bello, Getty Images

Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown shoots a selfie-type photo with fans after the second half of an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, Dec. 14, 2014, in Atlanta. The Pittsburgh Steelers won 27-20.

Photo Credit: David Goldman, AP Photo

Goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky #72 of the Columbus Blue Jackets follows the puck during the first period on December 13, 2014 at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. Columbus defeated Pittsburgh 4-3 in a shootout.

Photo Credit: Jamie Sabau, NHLI via Getty Images

Khaleen Pinkett #2 of the Savannah State Tigers defends against the Miami Hurricanes during second half action on December 8, 2014 at the BankUnited Center in Coral Gables, Florida. Miami defeated Savannah State 70-39.

Photo Credit: Joel Auerbach, Getty Images

San Diego Chargers outside linebacker Melvin Ingram, left, knocks a pass way from Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 14, 2014, in San Diego.

Photo Credit: Lenny Ignelzi, AP Photo

Los Angeles Lakers' Jeremy Lin, bottom, and Sacramento Kings' Rudy Gay fight for a loose ball during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2014, in Los Angeles. The Lakers won 98-95.

Photo Credit: Jae C. Hong, AP Photo

Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Ace Sanders (18) is knocked off his feet by Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Kamar Aiken (11) on a kickoff return during the first half of an NFL football game in Baltimore, Sunday, Dec. 14, 2014.

Photo Credit: Patrick Semansky, AP Photo

Edmonton Oilers' Taylor Hall dives for the puck during the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Anaheim Ducks, Wednesday, Dec. 10, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif. The Ducks won 2-1.

Photo Credit: Jae C. Hong, AP Photo

Bullfighter Chuck Swisher, top, gets tossed into the air by bull Cajun Smurf while Swisher was protecting Bull rider Trey Benton III during the seventh go-round of the National Finals Rodeo, Wednesday, Dec. 10, 2014, in Las Vegas.

Photo Credit: John Locher, AP Photo

A general view of a line out during the European Rugby Challenge Cup match between London Welsh and Edinburgh Rugby at Kassam Stadium on December 14, 2014 in Oxford, England.

Photo Credit: Clive Rose, Getty Images

New England Patriots cornerback Kyle Arrington dives into the end zone after recovering a blocked field goal for a touchdown against the Miami Dolphins during first quarter action at Gillette Stadium on December 14, 2014.

Photo Credit: Matthew J. Lee, The Boston Globe via Getty Images

A surfer rides a huge wave during a tow-in surfing session at the Praia do Norte or North beach, in Nazare, Portugal, Thursday, Dec, 11, 2014. The beach has become a famous break point for big waves riders around the world.

Photo Credit: Francisco Seco, AP Photo

A general view of the Mass Start Ladies race on day three of the ISU World Cup Speed Skating held at Thialf Ice Arena on December 14, 2014 in Heerenveen, Netherlands. Ivanie Blondin of Canada won the race.

Photo Credit: Dean Mouhtaropoulos, Getty Images

Philadelphia Flyers' Michael Raffl, of Austria, scores a goal past Carolina Hurricanes' Anton Khudobin, of Kazakstan, during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, Dec. 13, 2014, in Philadelphia.

Photo Credit: Matt Slocum, AP Photo

Monaco's Joao Moutinho, top left, celebrates with teammates their side's 2nd goal during the Champions League Group C soccer match between Monaco and Zenit St. Petersburg at Louis II stadium in Monaco, Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2014. Monaco qualified for the knockout phase of the Champions League by defeating Zenit St. Petersburg 2-0 to finish top of Group C Tuesday.

Photo Credit: Lionel Cironneau, AP Photo

Lars Helge Birkeland of Norway competes during the IBU Biathlon World Cup Men's and Women's Pursuit on December 14, 2014 in Hochfilzen, Austria.

Photo Credit: Stanko Gruden, Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Kentucky's Dominique Hawkins (25) goes to the floor to try to get a loose ball from Columbia's Maodo Lo at Rupp Arena in Lexington, Ky., on Wednesday Dec. 10, 2014. Kentucky won, 56-46.

Photo Credit: Mark Cornelison, Lexington Herald-Leader/TNS via Getty Images

America's Michael Arroyo, left, shoots to score against Tigres during the final of the Mexican soccer league in Mexico City, Sunday, Dec. 14, 2014.

Photo Credit: Christian Palma, AP Photo

New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham (13) makes a catch against Washington Redskins cornerback David Amerson (39) during the fourth quarter of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 14, 2014, in East Rutherford, N.J.

Photo Credit: Julio Cortez, AP Photo

Gareth Bale of Real Madrid heads the ball during the UEFA Champions League Group B match between Real Madrid CF and PFC Ludogorets Razgrad at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on December 9, 2014 in Madrid, Spain.

Photo Credit: Angel Martinez, Real Madrid via Getty Images

Eric Decker #87 of the New York Jets misses a pass in the end zone of the third quarter of a game against the Tennessee Titans at LP Field on December 14, 2014 in Nashville, Tennessee. The Jets defeated the Titans 16-11.

Photo Credit: Wesley Hitt, Getty Images

Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers leaves the court after the game against the Minnesota Timberwolves on December 14, 2014 at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Bryant passed Michael Jordan on the all-time scoring list with a free throw during the second quarter. The Lakers defeated the Timberwolves 100-94. 

Photo Credit: Hannah Foslien, Getty Images

Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers celebrates with fans on his way to the locker room after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons Monday, Dec. 8, 2014, in Green Bay, Wis. The Packers won 43-37.

Photo Credit: Mike Roemer, AP Photo

America's coach Antonio Mohamed is tossed up in the air by his players celebrating their defeat of Tigres at the end of the Mexican league final soccer match in Mexico City, Sunday, Dec. 14, 2014.

Photo Credit: Christian Palma, AP Photo

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