Archive for September, 2016

Canada Defeats Team Europe, A.J. Green Dominates in TNF, Gordon Enters Rehab, Saban Criticizes Quitting

HOCKEY

Canada defeated Team Europe to win the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.  Canada swept Team Europe in the best of three final, and by doing so, recorded their 16th straight win.

FOOTBALL

a-j-greenReceiver A.J. Green had a disappointing game last weekend against the Denver Broncos when he dropped a late game pass. He told the media he needed to refocus for Thursday Night Football. Boy did he refocus!  Thanks to Green’s dominance, the Cincinnati Bengals leaped over the Miami Dolphins for a 22-7 win.

In more NFL news, Cleveland Browns receiver Josh Gordon (who was scheduled to rejoin his team in a few days) admitted himself to a rehab facility to try and get his life in order. Gordon was suspended for the 2015 season (and the first four games of this season) for substance abuse. Gordon was scheduled to return for the October 9th game against the New England Patriots. “This is the right decision for me,” Gordon said, “and one that I hope will enable me to gain full control of my life and continue on a path to reach my full potential as a person.”

In college football, Alabama coach Nick Saban did not mince words expressing his disappointment in backup QB Blake Barnett transferring to a junior college in order to be eligible to play for another school next year.  Saban said, “There’s certain pride people have in competition. There’s certain things I was taught growing up about not quitting and seeing things through. I think if I’d come home and told my dad that I was going to quit the team, I think he’d have kicked me out of the house. I don’t think I’d have had a place to stay.” Some have criticized Saban for his comments because, after only 2 years with the Miami Dolphins, he left to become head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide.

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Red Sox Clinch AL East Title, Tim Tebow Hits First HR, Ryan Poses As Reporter

BASEBALL

Even with a loss to the NY Yankees Wednesday night, the Boston Red Sox managed to clinch the American League East Title when the Baltimore Orioles beat the Toronto Blue Jays on the same night. Even though the team was upset about their loss, one of the team’s managers said, “They’re AL East champions, we’re AL East champions, and we’ve got a lot of work left ahead of us. But one inning should not take away from the fact that we’re champions.”

In other baseball news, former NFL QB and Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow hit a home run on the first pitch on his first at-bat in his first real game. He still has a long way to go to make it to the Majors, but his attitude is positive. He told ESPN, “It’s great just to see live pitching and get live at-bats. I’m just getting a little bit better every day. That’s the goal.”

FOOTBALL

Belichick/RyanIt’s no secret the Buffalo Bills coach Rex Ryan and the New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick don’t like each other. In fact, last year the networks even aired a Monday Night Football promo showing the coaches shaking hands after a game while the song, “why can’t we be friends” played. In anticipation of this weekend’s matchup, Rex Ryan posed as a reporter and prank called the Patriots’ receiver/QB Julian Edelman. In the call he asked Edelman who would be playing QB this weekend: Edelman, Brissett or Garoppolo (remember Tom Brady is suspended for one more week). Ryan cracked himself up but didn’t get any covert info.

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J.J. Watt On Injured Reserve, Proposal Gone Awry, NL Wild-Card Heats Up

FOOTBALL

The Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt re-injured his back and will be placed on injured reserve. According to NFL rules, if a player is placed on injured reserve, he must miss at least 8 games. It’s possible Watt could return in December, but according to sources, it seems unlikely the three-time defensive player of the year will return this season.

BASEBALL

screen-shot-2016-09-28-at-9-02-12-amOne of the best moments from the Boston Red Sox/NY Yankees game Tuesday night was a proposal gone awry. A man stood up at the game (with the jumpotron documenting the moment) as he was about to propose to his girlfriend. When he opened the ring box, the ring popped out and everyone around him (again, jumpotron documenting it all) frantically looked for the ring. Thankfully the story has a happy ending, the ring was found and the girlfriend said yes. And, if you’re a Yankee fan, the story gets better as the Red Sox lost and snapped their winning streak.

In other baseball news, the three remaining teams competing for the National League wild card spot all scored 12 runs on Tuesday. The Mets beat the Marlins, the Giants overpowered the Rockies and the Cardinals cruised to a win over the Reds. With all three teams so close, it’s conceivable there would be a three way tie. For more on how that would work out, click here.

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Falcons’ Offense Dominated In MNF, Show Of Unity Before Game, Gordon’s Home Run Honors Fernandez

FOOTBALL

The Atlanta Falcons and the New Orleans Saints faced off on Monday night, and anyone who wasn’t watching the first Presidential debates saw the dominance of Atlanta’s offense. Julio Jones is Atlanta’s star receiver, but what is making the Falcons so good this year is when QB Matt Ryan spreads his passes to multiple receivers making every one of them a threat. In Monday’s 45-32 win, Ryan completed passes to eight different receivers. It also helped that the Saints’ defense never really showed up.

In a show of unity acknowledging social injustice but respecting the National Anthem, the Falcons and Saints players joined hands in a circle before the game for a moment of silence and reflection. Coaches from both teams left it up to their quarterbacks (Drew Brees and Matt Ryan) to figure out a way to show unity and respect. Ryan stated, “And we wanted to send a message loud and clear that unity is probably the best way to make a change, and I thought that came across loud and clear tonight.”

BASEBALL

screen-shot-2016-09-27-at-9-04-43-amBefore Monday’s game against the NY Mets, the Miami Marlins paid tribute to Jose Fernandez who died tragically on Sunday in a boating accident. When the game started, Dee Gordon paid his own tribute by batting right handed (with the same mannerisms as Fernandez). After the first pitch, Gordon switched to the left side of the plate (where he normally hits) and belted his first home run of the season. It was an emotional moment for the players and the crowd. Marlins 7, Mets 3.

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Arnold Palmer’s Legacy, Jose Fernandez Boating Accident, Cowboys’ Rookies, Beckham Jr/Norman Rivalry

GOLF

arnold-palmerOne of the most famous golfers in the world, Arnold Palmer, passed away on Sunday at the age of 87. Palmer is credited with golf’s rise in popularity especially getting fans to watch on TV. Palmer transcended the sports world and became a successful businessman. He even invented the popular ice tea/lemonade drink (known as the Arnold Palmer). He will surely be missed, but his legacy will live on.

BASEBALL

The Florida Marlins’ pitcher Jose Fernandez died in a boating accident over the weekend. The Coast Guard reported three men (including Fernandez) were involved in an accident (likely due to the speed) where the boat hit a jetty off of Miami Beach. The Marlins cancelled the game on Sunday and the League held a moment of silence before all games. Fernandez defected from Cuba at the age of 15 and went on to a successful career on the mound.

NFL

A few highlights from around the NFL on Sunday:

Dallas Cowboys’ Rookies’ Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott made an impact on the Team. Elliott (picked #4 in the draft) had a 100 yard game and Prescott (picked much later in the 4th round) threw his first touchdown to lead his team to victory over the Chicago Bears. Cowboys 31, Bears 17.

New York Giants’ wide receiver, Odell Beckham Jr and Redskins cornerback Josh Norman behaved on Sunday and just tried to play their best on the field. The much anticipated rivalry (and assumed hatred) between the two did not seem to affect their game. Norman played down the rivalry and said after the game, “Just an awesome day, just straight awesome day. Like from the beginning when the refs came over and talked to us, about nothing and towards the end when I was celebrating with my teammates victoriously — can’t ask for anything better than that. All this stuff in between was the show. Gosh, man, I’m gonna be on this high for a while. It feels good, man.” Beckham Jr didn’t feel exactly the same way but that’s likely because the Giants lost. Redskins 29, Giants 27.

 

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Rookie Brissett Guides Pats To A Win, Kaepernick Cover Of Time

NFL

Tom Brady’s backup to the backup, QB Jacoby Brissett carried the New England Patriots to their third straight win. As a 23 year old rookie, Brissett is living the dream. In the first quarter (and  his first quarter ever as an NFL quarterback) he turned a Houston Texan fumble into a 27 yard touchdown (the longest run by a Patriots QB since 1976). Instead of a over the top celebration, he marched to the Patriot’s bench, handed coach Bill Belichick the ball and shook his hand. He stated after, “It was crazy, it was awesome,” it was definitely great to see all the players run up to you, and I got a headache from all the head-bumping. But it was definitely worth it.” As great as this moment was for Brissett, all talk Friday morning is how great Belichick is as a coach, and how he can mold any team to dominance. With the win, Belichick tied Curly Lambeau at 4th on the list of all time wins by a coach. Patriots 27, Texans 0.

screen-shot-2016-09-23-at-5-09-18-am49ers backup QB Colin Kaepernick, who continues to take a knee during the National Anthem, claimed he’s been receiving death threats. The NFL has seen viewing numbers down, and some blame the decline on the players’ actions during the Anthem. Time magazine picked up on the controversy and will feature Kaepernick on this week’s issue.

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NBA Urges Players And Union Work Together, Norman And Beckham Jr. Rivalry

NBA

The NBA and the National Basketball Players Association sent a memo around the League urging players and the Union to work together to create ways to demonstrate their frustrations concerning social injustice without violating League rules. The NBA prohibits players from kneeling or sitting during the National Anthem. Several WNBA players have disregarded this rule over the last few weeks, and on Wednesday the entire Indiana Fever Team knelt together during the National Anthem. No one has been fined yet, so it remains to be seen what will happen when the NBA season begins.

NFL

Odell Beckham Jr 2Washington Redskins’ cornerback Josh Norman and the New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. face off on Sunday and sparks will fly. The two players have had it in for each other since December 2015 during a very physical game which included many personal fouls and a dangerous helmet-to-helmet hit.  The rivalry continued throughout the year with many disparaging remarks on social media. Just a few weeks ago Norman told the author of a book called “Panther Rising”, “I don’t care for the guy at all. … Now don’t get me wrong, he’s a good player or whatever, but he’s not what he thinks he is. If you hit guys like that, if you completely jam them and shake them up, they can’t relate to that. So they start making excuses like, ‘Oh, he touched me.’ They don’t know how to respond because they never got hit like that. So me, every time I see him, I’m going to hit him in the mouth. I don’t care. Until he stops crying and (expletive).” Sunday’s game should be interesting! 1:00pm EST.

 

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Team USA Eliminated, Belichick Quiet On Garoppolo’s Start, Cutler’s Thumb

HOCKEY

Canada eliminated Team USA from contention in the World Cup of Hockey. Team USA was not favored to win the tournament, but fans were extremely upset about the quality of play, the coaching style and the players chosen to represent the best of USA Hockey. Canada 4, USA 2.

FOOTBALL

Bill Belichick is staying quiet on whether backup (to Tom Brady) Jimmy Garoppolo will start on Thursday Night Football against the Houston Texans. Garoppolo, who has completed 70% of his passes with no interceptions and 4 touchdowns, injured his shoulder last weekend. If Garoppolo isn’t ready to play, backup to the backup, Jacoby Brissett will lead the Team.

Jay CutlerChicago Bears’ QB Jay Cutler got some bad press after Monday Night’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles when he took himself out of the game. Cutler hurt his thumb during the game, kept himself in, but then immediately threw an interception. He was replaced by Brian Hoyer. On ESPN’s “Mike and Mike” former player, Ryan Clark, criticized Cutler for leaving the game, “This isn’t the first time. We’ve seen [Cutler] do this before. We’ve seen him sit on the sideline himself and take himself out of games. When you take yourself out of a game when it’s going bad, you know what that’s called? It’s called a ‘loser limp.’ … That’s the loser limp. That’s because ‘I’m not playing well, this isn’t going the way I want it to go, there is something a little bit wrong with me, so let’s blame it on that.'” According to reports, Cutler won’t need surgery but is still considered day to day to start this week’s game.

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Wentz Is Real Deal In Eagles Win, QB Injuries, Georgetown’s Wedding Proposal Package

FOOTBALL

After Monday’s road game against the Chicago Bears, Philadelphia Eagles’ rookie QB Carson Wentz proved he’s the real deal. The Eagles traded up in April’s draft to take Wentz with the second overall pick.  The team then traded their established QB Sam Bradford to the Minnesota Vikings just 8 days before the start of the season, and thrust Wentz into the starring role. Their gamble seems to be working out. He’s the first rookie ever to win his first two games in the NFL without throwing an interception. Eagles 29, Bears 14.

Not only are the New England Patriots expected to start a rookie QB next weekend, but now the Cleveland Browns are in the same boat. Robert Griffin III (RGIII) was supposed to be their superstar but he went down in the first game with a broken bone in his shoulder. Josh McCown took over but then suffered his own shoulder injury this past weekend. If McCown doesn’t get better, rookie Cody Kessler (third round pic in this year’s draft), will start. If injuries continue to plague quarterbacks in the League, Tim Tebow might want to reconsider his new baseball gig with the NY Mets and come back to lead a Team.

BASKETBALL

screen-shot-2016-09-20-at-8-49-10-amGeorgetown University has a unique package for fans of basketball who want a memorable wedding proposal. They are offering up a “pop the question” package where a planner will work with you to propose during a Hoyas game. The ad even states it’s a win, win, because if your intended refuses your proposal you get your money back for the game.

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Rams Win At Home, Norman Takes Drug Test, Broncos D, Pats 3rd QB

FOOTBALL

Some highlights of the weekend football games:

ceelo-greenIt was a shockingly low scoring game, but the Los Angeles Rams’ defense helped the home crowd rejoice in a win against the once dominant QB Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks. The Rams hadn’t played a regular season game in the LA Coliseum since 1979. Remember, the Los Angeles Rams were the St. Louis Rams, so playing for their new hometown fans in the LA Coliseum and winning, is a big deal. In traditional LA style, fans listened to a performance by the Red Hot Chili Peppers and CeeLo Green singing the National Anthem.  Rams 9, Seahawks 3.

To make a bad day even worse, Washington Redskins’ Cornerback Josh Norman had to take drug test after a loss to the Dallas Cowboys. The NFL conducts random drug tests throughout the season. Cowboys 27, Redskins 23.

Last year’s Super Bowl MVP, the Broncos’ Von Miller, is making his mark on the season and neutralized Indianapolis QB Andrew Luck in a 34-20 win.

The New England Patriots’ QB Tom Brady is staying football ready (according to his wife supermodel Gisele Bundchen) but is still out for 2 more games (remember deflategate). We just started to get to know his backup Jimmy Garoppolo (who has performed well in the spotlight and had even threw for 3 touchdowns against the Miami Dolphins in the first half),went down with an injury late in the second quarter. Jacoby Brisett, a rookie who was a third round pick out of NC State, was thrown into the fire but kept his cool and helped the team pull out the win. It remains unclear who will be the starting QB for the remainder of Brady’s suspension. Patriots 31, Dolphins 24.

For more NFL news, click here.

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