Steve Donahue Reflects On Last Season, ACC Expansion And The Final Four

Source: http://www.bcinterruption.com/2012/3/30/2915242/2012-final-four-steve-donahue-boston-college-basketball-acc-expansion

Montreal Canadiens Ottawa Senators Toronto Maple Leafs Atlanta Trashers Carolina Hurricanes Florida Panthers

Blues Completely Healthy After Two Years

from Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, With the return Saturday of Andy McDonald, Matt D’Agostini and Roman Polak, the Blues will have their entire roster healthy and available for the first time since March 3, 2010 - a span of 160 games.

“I was in the middle of one of the drills (at Friday’s practice) ... we were doing 5 on 5 and it seemed like every line was battling with every line,” Blues forward T.J. Oshie said. “It wasn’t one line dominating another. I looked over at (Carlo Colaiacovo) and I said, ‘We’ve got a really deep team when everybody is out here.’

“You look at the guys that are sitting out, guys that have been impact players and have been key role players during the season when guys have been hurt ...they’re the (extra) guys right now. It just shows the work that management did in the summer. It’s a great feeling having everyone out there on the ice.”

more on the Blues…

Source: http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.php/hockey/comments/blues_completely_healthy_after_two_years/

Kansas City Royals Los Angeles Dodgers Minnesota Twins New York Yankees Oakland Athletics Seattle Mariners

Video- Weird Goal Of The Night

Thomas Vanek picks up the pick and beats Brent Johnson after it takes a strange bounce off the glass.

Source: http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.php/hockey/comments/video-_weird_goal_of_the_night1/

Chad Moeller Jorge Posada Lance Berkman Reegie Corona Juan Miranda Colin Curtis

NHL Playoffs 2012: The Merits Of Tanking For A Better Matchup

Source: http://www.broadstreethockey.com/2012/3/29/2910364/nhl-playoffs-2012-hahahahahaha-the-caps-are-terrrrrrrrrrrible

Pittsburgh Pirates San Diego Padres San Francisco Giants St. Louis Cardinals Washington Nationals Jonathan Albaladejo

Flyers vs. Maple Leafs preview: Eric Lindros has completely stolen this show

Source: http://www.broadstreethockey.com/2012/3/29/2911983/maple-leafs-flyers-game-preview-eric-lindros-swoon

Steve Garrison Phil Hughes Damaso Marte Mariano Rivera Kerry Wood Francisco Cervelli

WrestleMania 28: Team Johnny Win Will Be Start of Something Big for David Otunga

David Otunga showed promise during his time on NXT and as a part of the Nexus, but he finally appears ready for a bigger weekly role. His stock has risen considerably as John Laurinaitis' right-hand man, setting him up for a push after WrestleMania.

Even though Otunga isn't generally viewed as a future star because of his lack of big matches since debuting a couple years ago, he's made nice progress and deserves an extended look in the mid-card mix in the coming months.

After the year's biggest event, there's usually a lull in programming because major stars like The Rock, Undertaker and Triple H take a back seat for awhile. So there's always openings for new stars to emerge if they are willing to step up.

Otunga has clearly worked hard to become a more complete superstar. He still has a long way to go before he reaches an elite level, but he's come far enough to warrant more chances moving forward.

Vince McMahon has always leaned toward wrestlers who have “the look.” Otunga certainty has that and he's been given ample time to show it off lately, proving he's not going to fade away once the 12-man tag team match ends on Sunday.

He's serving as the captain for Team Johnny, which should give him a chance to standout in what's otherwise looking like a throwaway match on a strong card. Last year's massive tag team match lasted less than two minutes.

This year's match should last longer than that since there's something on the line, but the premise remains the same. It's just a chance to help 12 superstars remain relevant when they would normally have nothing to do.

That also makes it a terrific opportunity to give a guy like Otunga a push. By letting him pin one of the weaker members of Team Teddy, most likely The Great Khali, he could start his ascent up the ranks into being something more than a supporting cast member for Laurinaitis.

Otunga has the talent to excel if given more time to prove himself. Hopefully he gets that opportunity starting with a marquee victory on the grandest stage of them all.

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1123677-wrestlemania-28-team-johnny-win-will-be-start-of-something-big-for-david-otunga

New York Rangers Philadelphia Flyers Pittsburgh Penguins Boston Bruins Buffalo Sabres Montreal Canadiens

WWE WrestleMania 28: Tag Team Title Match to Take Place Before the Big Event

Well, better late than never.

Just announced on WWE.com:

The WWE Tag Team Titles will be up for grabs when champions Primo & Epico defend against both The Usos and the new tandem of Justin Gabriel & Tyson Kidd in a WWE Tag Team Championship Triple Threat Match, which will stream live on WWE.com and YouTube this Sunday at 6:30 ET/3:30 PT

It's good to see the tag titles are going to be defended on April 1, even though it's not going to be part of the live card.

The participants are the champions themselves, Epico and Primo, along with the Usos and Justin Gabriel and Tyson Kidd.

Epico and Primo have been lost in the shuffle as of late. Thanks to this, it was nearly impossible to think a bout for the tag team gold was going to be part of 'Mania.

Jimmy and Jey have been partners longer than their opposing teams. They might be the most credible tag partners in the WWE today.

Then, there's Gabriel and Kidd, who just this week formed their team on Superstars, after they both shook hands and contemplated themselves as champions following a great match between the too. This is pretty good pairing, and I'm anxious to see where the company goes with them.

They were most likely paired to fill in for a team like R-Truth and Kofi Kingston or Swagger and Ziggler, who are part of  the Team Teddy-Team Johnny match.

Even if it is a dark match, I expect this to be a pretty good.

I'd even say it should be part of the main card but alas, it isn't. And being a non-televised match could mean that we shouldn't expect a title change, but at the same time, you never know what WWE has in mind—Primo and Epico won the titles in a live event.

Let's hope this wakes up an urge in the WWE to revive the tag teams, and make them more interesting in the future to come.

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1126433-wwe-wrestlemania-28-match-to-take-place-before-the-big-event

New York Yankees Oakland Athletics Seattle Mariners Tampa Bay Rays Texas Rangers Toronto Blue Jays

WWE Friday Night SmackDown (3/30/12): Live Blog, Coverage and Analysis

How's it going, Bleachers? Welcome to the live blog for tonight's episode of Friday Night SmackDown.

I'm your host, Drake Oz, and I'll be providing you all with updates throughout the night for the final SmackDown show before WrestleMania 28.

This is a "special" episode of SmackDown, if you will, as most of tonight's show will likely consist of footage from the WrestleMania Axxess events that have happened throughout the week as well as a number of video packages promoting the major Mania matches.

Nonetheless, I hope to see an entertaining show that gets me even more excited for WrestleMania than I already am.

Alright, enough with all the intros, let's get to the live blog. But one last reminder: Be sure to make this article your official comment thread for SmackDown. 

Enjoy the show, enjoy WrestleMania and have a good weekend!

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1126349-wwe-friday-night-smackdown-33012-live-blog-coverage-and-analysis

Francisco Cervelli Chad Moeller Jorge Posada Lance Berkman Reegie Corona Juan Miranda

The Unbelievable Performance Of This 86-Year-Old Gymnast Will Blow Your Mind

Johanna Quaas, 86, can still rock the gymnastics floor and parallel bars as well as a tight fitting leotard.

Check the videos of the German octogenarian doing a headstand, handstand, cartwheel, and forward and backward rolls at the 2012 Cottbus World Cup this month. (via LimeLife)

Floor Performance

Parallel Bars

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Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/sportspage/~3/ItiitvuMcJo/the-unbelievable-performance-of-this-86-year-old-gymnast-will-blow-your-mind-2012-3

Montreal Canadiens Ottawa Senators Toronto Maple Leafs Atlanta Trashers Carolina Hurricanes Florida Panthers

Game 80 Preview: Avalanche @ Flames

Source: http://www.milehighhockey.com/2012/3/30/2913170/game-80-preview-avalanche-flames

zach Parise bryce Salvador Wade Belak Martin Erat Marcel Goc Jamie Lundmark

Can the White Sox expect anything out of Dylan Axelrod?

There isn’t a ton of reason to be optimistic about either Chicago baseball team this MLB season. The Cubs figure to be bad, and the White Sox only marginally better. But there is an interesting comeback story possibly brewing on the White Sox pitching staff. For a guy to play for the lowly Windy City [...]

Source: http://www.thesportsbank.net/chicago-white-sox/can-the-white-sox-expect-anything-out-of-dylan-axelrod/

Joe Callahan Bryan Allen Mark Cullen Baltimore Orioles Boston Red Sox Chicago White Sox

Links to the Best in AFC North Coverage, 3/30 Edition

Today's AFC North links roundup includes a look at the Baltimore Ravens' cap situation, another expert's call for the Browns to draft quarterback Ryan Tannehill, what the Steelers need to do to keep their wide receivers and an evaluation of two Bleacher Report draft experts' latest mocks.


Aaron Wilson of the Carroll County Times breaks down the deal that returning linebacker Jameel McClain received from the Baltimore Ravens and takes a look at the team's remaining cap space.

Shawn Brubaker of Bleacher Report says the Ravens got off to a good start in free agency to shore up their special teams unit, but they need to continue to make improvements to it via the draft.

In the "it never ends" department, the Cleveland Plain Dealer's Mary Kay Cabot reports that NFL Network's Mike Mayock says the Browns must draft quarterback Ryan Tannehill at No. 4 overall after the showing at his pro day this week.

Bleacher Report draft expert Sigmund Bloom offers up his ideal Cleveland Browns seven-round mock draft.

Free agency is pretty much over for the Cincinnati Bengals, writes the Enquirer's Joe Reedy, so now the focus shifts to the draft and training camp.

Bleacher Report's Ryan Rudnansky believes the Cincinnati Bengals will pay for not picking up a top free-agent wide receiver this year.

Scott Brown of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review takes a look at what it will take for the Steelers to retain its trio of young, talented receivers.

Nick DeWitt of Bleacher Report hands out grades to our own Matt Miller for his latest Pittsburgh Steelers mock draft.

Finally, in a shameless plug, here's a link to my latest F*BALL NFL Podcast, in which myself and co-host Brian Sibila discuss the Cleveland Browns at length, among other topics. Bleacher Report AFC East lead blogger Erik Frenz is the guest.


Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1125532-links-to-the-best-in-afc-north-coverage-330-edition

Tampa Bay Rays Texas Rangers Toronto Blue Jays chicago blackhawks columbus blue jackets detroit red wings


Community Playing Time Forecasts

Source: http://www.lonestarball.com/2012/3/29/2912577/community-playing-time-forecasts

Minnesota Wild Vancouver Canucks Anaheim Ducks Dallas Los Angeles Kings Phoenix Coyotes

SPORTS CHART OF THE DAY: The Dodgers' Value Has Increased More Than 500% Since 1998

In 1998, FOX Television purchased the Los Angeles Dodgers for $311 million. Six years later, the team was purchased by the McCourt Family for $430 million, a decent Return on Investment of 38.3%. But it was under the McCourts, that despite the mess caused by their divorce, that the team's value skyrocketed.

With a group led by Magic Johnson purchasing the team for $2 billion this week, that represents a 365% increase over the price paid by the McCourts, and a 543% increase over the sale price in 1998.

That $2 billion sale price is also a large jump from the most recent valuation given by Forbes.com, in which they estimated the Dodgers to be worth $1.4 billion. Here's a look at how the value of the Dodgers has changed through the years...

Los Angeles Dodgers

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Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/sportspage/~3/5p4RmgsosGA/sports-chart-of-the-day-the-dodgers-value-has-increased-more-than-500-since-1998-2012-3

Anibal Sanchez John Baker Brad Davis Logan Morrison Mike Stanton Josh Bailey

Nation’s #1 recruit, Shabazz Muhammad, narrows school choices down to four

The Nation’s #1 recruit, Shabazz Muhammad, will not be staying at home to play college basketball this fall. Cross UNLV off his list, as the Las Vegas native now has his own set of final four schools left remaining for his services.Two of them will be competing this Final Four weekend as Kentucky, Kansas, Duke, [...]

Source: http://www.thesportsbank.net/college-bball/nations-1-recruit-shabazz-muhammad-narrows-school-choices-down-to-four/

Robbie Eal Joe Callahan Bryan Allen Mark Cullen Baltimore Orioles Boston Red Sox

Flyers vs. Maple Leafs preview: Eric Lindros has completely stolen this show

Source: http://www.broadstreethockey.com/2012/3/29/2911983/maple-leafs-flyers-game-preview-eric-lindros-swoon

Andy Greene zach Parise bryce Salvador Wade Belak Martin Erat Marcel Goc

FLYERS AT MAPLE LEAFS SECOND PERIOD THREAD Brayden Schenn something Luke something family...

Source: http://www.broadstreethockey.com/2012/3/29/2912699/flyers-at-maple-leafs-second-period-thread-brayden-schenn-something

Juan Miranda Colin Curtis Kevin Russo Curtis Granderson Nick Johnson Javier Lopez

Karlsson Entering Record Territory

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,  Erik Karlsson has a chance to be one Super Swede.

While the Senators’ blueliner has already rewritten the franchise record book for points and is one goal shy of breaking Steve Duchesne’s mark (20) for goals by a defenceman, he is closing in on another significant mark.

With five games left in the regular season, Karlsson, who has 76 points, is only five points from breaking Nicklas Lidstrom’s all-time record of 80 in one season by a Swedish defenceman, set in 2005-06 with the Red Wings.

Karlsson, 21, has already moved into a third-place tie among Swedes with former Maple Leafs great Borje Salming, who had 76 points in 1977-78 and set the mark with 78 points in 1976-77 until Lidstrom broke it.


Source: http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.php/hockey/comments/karlsson_entering_record_territory/

Houston Astros Los Angeles Dodgers Milwaukee Brewers New York Mets Philadelphia Phillies Pittsburgh Pirates


Source: http://www.lonestarball.com/2012/3/29/2909545/888888

zach Parise bryce Salvador Wade Belak Martin Erat Marcel Goc Jamie Lundmark

Time for Sergei Bobrovsky to break slump

Source: http://www.broadstreethockey.com/2012/3/28/2908560/bob-bob-bob

A.J. Burnett Steve Garrison Phil Hughes Damaso Marte Mariano Rivera Kerry Wood

NIT 2012: Minnesota Golden Gopher Basketball, May I Have This Dance?

OK, so we all know this recent postseason run by the Minnesota Golden Gophers has been made at the kids table while the grownups just sit back and snicker while drinking brandy and smoking stogies.

Either way, I’m having a hell of a good time watching.

The rodents from the “U” have made an impressive run (at LaSalle, Miami, Middle Tennessee State; at MSG vs. Washington) to earn their first trip to the NIT championship since 1998. Say what you want, but a trip to New York and Madison Square Garden must be pretty exciting for these kids.

They also went down in the record books as only the second team in history to win all their NIT games on the road to advance to NYC.

The old argument (that even my buddies at STOB and I don’t bother going back in forth with), however, has reared its ugly head. You know the one—about if making a run in the NIT is, in some ways, better than a first-round knockout of the NCAA tournament. I can see people making arguments for both sides right now.

To me, it really depends on the team.

This year, for a team like UNC, I would say no because it is an experienced team that doesn’t really have much room for further growth with the players on the roster. The Tar Heels, like all established teams—yes, I am saying the Gophers aren’t established—would most likely stick their nose in the air at the NIT.

A young Gophers team, however? It accepts the invite and puts on its best dancing shoes.

The Gophers, unlike UNC, can grow—and have—from a run in the NIT. Now, notice I said "a run." If they would have been knocked out in the first game against LaSalle, this whole writeup would be null and void.

I’ve said it from the minute the Gophers got the invite: “I’d be more impressed if they win the NIT than I would have been if they lost in the first round of the NCAA.” Some called me stupid, but I beg to differ.

A team currently starting three freshmen (Andre Hollins, Joe Coleman, Elliott Eliason) needed this. They needed this NIT berth to give them not only confidence, but also tournament experience.

If you have been watching the past four games, they are getting both by the handfuls.

Hollins, in my honest opinion, might be the best guard we have seen at the “U” since Bobby Jackson. Is that a stretch? Maybe, but I don’t think so. The kid is a stud. If not for the games missed earlier this season due to injury, this article might be about the NCCA run they might still be on.

Coleman is on his way as well. The Hopkins standout showed flashes earlier this year (see PSU game) but seemed to hit a wall late. However, like all great fighters, he has caught his second wind and is running full speed.

Double E is a monster. I could end it there, but I feel this Nebraska big man deserves some love. Since Ralph Sampson III has gone down, Eliason has been put into the starting five and, for the most part, hasn’t looked back. Sure, he might foul too much, but he is a redshirt freshman. Those things will happen. Other than that, he has been a hardworking, tough-nosed kid that might just be the “best big man” Tubby Smith has coached. His words, not mine.

With all that said about the freshman, there is still one man that has really turned it one. His name, you ask? Rodney Williams.

RW33 came in his freshman season with a load of hype. He didn’t live up to it. Plain and simple, it seemed like that hype was a load of manure. In fact, he hasn’t lived up to it until this year, his junior year. It all seemed to click when he was moved to the 4 spot after the season-ending injury to Trevor Mbakwe.

Even then, he wasn’t the force he is now.

Williams has scored more than 20 points in the last six games and is a new player. A switch has been turned on and I never want to see it turned off. Send me the Xcel bill if need be. I’ll gladly pay it.

He is a leader now, not just in the way he is playing, but in the way he is talking to his teammates. He is in their face—in a good way—letting them know it’s all right to make mistakes, it’s OK to get knocked down, just keep playing.

All I can say is that if this core is back and Mbakwe gets that sixth year of eligibility (and he should), watch out. The Gophers might just take a seat at the grownups table and drink everyone else under it.

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1124802-minnesota-golden-gopher-basketball-may-i-have-this-dance

Jamie Lundmark Nick Spaling Pikka Rinne Mathieu Carle Lars Eller Hal Gill

LSB's Top 100 Players in MLB -- Voting Open for #9

Source: http://www.lonestarball.com/2012/3/29/2910046/lsbs-top-100-players-in-mlb-voting-open-for-9

Milwaukee Brewers New York Mets Philadelphia Phillies Pittsburgh Pirates San Diego Padres San Francisco Giants

Minnesota vs. Stanford NIT: Scrappy Gophers Worth Rooting for

As if you needed another reason to watch the prestigious and illustrious NIT, I've got something else that will sweeten the 2012 NIT Championship Game for you.

The Minnesota Golden Gophers are one hell of a story this season.

They lost their best player for the season, forward Trevor Mbakwe, seven games in this year, and they've been without their starting center, Ralph Sampson III, since the last regular-season game against Nebraska.

After losing seven of eight games in February (they faced Ohio State, Indiana, Michigan State, and Wisconsin twice in that stretch), they've since won six of seven, including NIT upsets of higher-seeded La Salle, Miami, Middle Tennessee and Washington.

Eleven players average 11 minutes or more for the Golden Gophers. Outside of Mbakwe, Minnesota doesn't have anybody that jumps out at you, but they play a gritty-brand of team basketball, averaging 15.3 assists per game.

And somehow, they managed to slow down Washington's prolific offense, holding the Huskies to 67 points through an overtime session. To put that in perspective, Washington put 90 up on Oregon only a game before, so it was no small feat to slow them and their NBA-ready talent, Terrence Ross and Tony Wroten Jr., down.

So yeah, they play that good ol' fashioned Big Ten defense, too.

Minnesota isn't sexy. They don't have their best player available. They have to use their entire bench and rely on team play rather than individual efforts.

And they keep winning. Don't be surprised if they continue that trend against Stanford.

Hit me up on Twitter—my tweets have won a lot since 2009.

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Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1124279-minnesota-vs-stanford-nit-scrappy-minnesota-squad-is-a-team-worth-rooting-for

Nick Spaling Pikka Rinne Mathieu Carle Lars Eller Hal Gill John Madden

These 15 Celebrities Are Speed Demons On The Race Track

Tom Cruise

When you see a celebrity playing a sport, many times it's on a golf course during a charity game or as part of a Pro-Am.

Adrenaline junkies they are not.

However, there is another group of celebrities that look to something a bit less mundane that requires a whole lot of adrenaline.

We're talking about auto racing.

Ever since the 1950s, a select few celebrities have gotten off the golf course and thrown out their tennis racquets in order to seek a thrill greater than running after a tiny ball.

Some have just done it recreationally while others have had the desire and skill to consider making it their full time profession.

James Dean

Hollywood bad boy James Dean may have been one of the first stars to also get behind the wheel.

A big Porsche fan, Dean actually won a few races in the 1950s. He also had a Lotus Mark IX on order to take his racing career to the next level.

Unfortunately, he died behind the wheel of his Porsche 550A Spyder while driving to a race. He was just 24.

Steve McQueen

Actor Steve McQueen was another racing star that dabbled in filmmaking.

He won his class at the 12 Hours of Sebring in 1970 driving a Porsche 908 with Peter Revson.

He also made Bullit and the racing film Le Mans, which is widely considered the most accurate racing film of all time. He did much of the driving and his own stunts in both films.

James Garner

James Garner may be an actor, but he also has a huge passion for motor racing.

Garner had his own team, American International Racing, which ran endurance races around the world.

He also prepared cars to run in the Baja 500.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/sportspage/~3/hiA__MOVrDI/racing-celebrities-2012-3

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Wings Skated Like They Had Nothing To Play For

Instead of going into Nashville on Friday with a 3 point lead on the Predators, the Wings will now face them with a 1 point lead with each team having 5 games remaining.

Will the loss tonight come back and haunt them or will the Wings find a way to win on Friday.

Either way, Detroit fans can’t be happy with the way the Wings played tonight.

So let your feelings be known below.

Oh yes, this is Paul filling in for George who plans to return tomorrow sometime.

I am not even going to post any highlights for two reasons, I am pretty fried right now and I need content to post.

Source: http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.php/tmr/comments/wings_skated_like_they_had_nothing_to_play_for/

Jorge Posada Lance Berkman Reegie Corona Juan Miranda Colin Curtis Kevin Russo

NC State has 3 McDonald’s All-Americans, including the smallest one: Tyler Lewis

Standing at just 5-foot-11 and 165 pounds, Tyler Lewis may not look like a McDonald’s All-American.  Put Lewis on the basketball court with any opponent, any size, and he’ll prove to be one of the nation’s best prospects. “(Lewis) had a terrific senior season,” said Evan Daniels, a national recruiting analyst for Scout.com. “Oak Hill [...]

Source: http://www.thesportsbank.net/college-bball/nc-state-has-3-mcdonalds-all-americans-including-the-smallest-one-tyler-lewis/

David Clarkson Patrick Davis Tyler Eckford Mark Fraser Andy Greene zach Parise

Animated GIF bracket: HOCKEY MASSACRE needs your votes

Source: http://www.broadstreethockey.com/2012/3/28/2908394/gif-bracket-hockey-massacre-VOTE-OR-DIE

Jason Arnott David Clarkson Patrick Davis Tyler Eckford Mark Fraser Andy Greene

B/R NFL 1,000: A Scout's Guide to Grading Cornerbacks

Winning the one-on-one battle between a cornerback and a wide receiver can be the difference in a win or loss. Ask the New England Patriots, who lost two Super Bowls because of their failure to cover David Tyree and Mario Manningham, respectively.

The cornerback position is one of the most important in the NFL, and finding sure-fire talents at the position isn't easy.

What are we looking for in a cornerback? Here's a breakdown of each trait. Check out the B/R NFL 1,000 to see our rankings of today's cornerbacks. 



A cornerback must have the quickness and balance to change direction as a runner, tackler and coverage man. We're looking at foot speed (not 40 times) and hip flexibility.


Run Defense

Put simply, how well the player attacks the run, taking on blockers and bringing down the ball carrier.



A ranking that gauges how well the cornerback adjusts to the play before and after the snap, as well as his ability to recognize play-action and route changes.



A judge of how well the player moves in space. Closing on the ball in the air and taking the right angle to the ball when it's on the ground.



A combination of man and zone coverage, we are looking at how well the cornerback does at preventing quarterbacks from throwing to the man he's covering.




This one is simple—not how many tackles does the player produce, but how well does he tackle when asked to do it.


Ball Skills

A grade of the player's ability to create turnovers (interceptions, fumbles) and defend the ball in the air.



Burst, acceleration and speed all rolled into one handy category.


Burn Rate

Similar to coverage, but this looks at how well the cornerback defends the ball when it's thrown to the man he's covering (while coverage is how well the corner does at preventing attempts). 



A player's 2011 injury status. Not only looking at actual injuries, but time missed due to injury.



The cumulative score of the 10 traits above, all wrapped up in one score. This sets the player's place in the position ranking and, ultimately, in the B/R NFL 1,000 ranking across all positions.

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1122840-br-nfl-1000-a-scouts-guide-to-grading-cornerbacks

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Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez Continues Throwing Progression

While college students across the nation were enjoying a week-long break from the pressures of schoolwork, Nebraska’s Taylor Martinez was doing something quite different. The quarterback, instead of relaxing at the beach, went back home to California and used the time to work on his throwing. Talk about commitment. Martinez worked for three days with [...]

Source: http://www.thesportsbank.net/college-fball/nebraska-qb-taylor-martinez-continues-throwing-progression/

Toronto Maple Leafs Atlanta Trashers Carolina Hurricanes Florida Panthers Tampa Bay Lightning Washington Capitals

5 Reasons the Golden State Warriors Will Make the Playoffs in 2013

With the Golden State Warriors fully embracing the tanking (er...youth) movement for the remainder of this season, fans and management can now focus on finding which pieces should keep (or increase) their role for next year's playoff run.

No matter the team's offseason moves (which will be very limited considering they're already nearing next year's salary cap), the Warriors look poised for a postseason trip next season as long as certain key players can avoid the training rooms.

The front office was strengthened over the offseason, and the roster has slowly but surely seen its share of upgrades throughout the roster. The team split their potent, but diminutive backcourt at the trade deadline and found the signature center they've been seeking for years.

Coach Mark Jackson's "no excuses" club will truly be without an excuse.

The playoff promises of owner Joe Lacob will be realized, albeit a year late.

The following five items are all aspects of the perfect postseason storm already brewing in Oakland.

Begin Slideshow

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1123558-5-reasons-the-golden-state-warriors-will-make-the-playoffs-in-2013

Atlanta Braves Chicago Cubs Cincinnati Reds Colorado Rockies Florida Marlins Houston Astros

Opening Day MLB Power Rankings: The AL Is Dominant

This post originally appeared at Bleacher Report.

League-wide rankings are a specialty of the MLB featured columnists here at Bleacher Report.

In recent weeks, Sean Rinehart and Josh Toyofuku have shared their thoughts. Now, I'll reveal my No. 1 team as the 2012 regular season begins.

I have evaluated all 30 clubs on their batting, fielding and pitching. All known injuries and player transactions since the World Series were taken into consideration.

Understand that nobody can accurately predict the standings. By October, midseason and even next week, peculiar events will shift the balance of power.

Rest assured that another B/R writer will be ready with an update.

See the rankings at Bleacher Report >

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Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/sportspage/~3/nBhyQjdlCgI/1117320-mlb-power-rankings-who-is-the-new-no-1-as-mlb-opens-in-tokyo

Lance Berkman Reegie Corona Juan Miranda Colin Curtis Kevin Russo Curtis Granderson

New Dodgers TV Deal Could Be Worth $4 Billion

Matt Kemp

We already knew the coming expiration of the Los Angeles Dodgers television deal was driving the franchise's sale price significantly upward, but the new TV rights deal number being bandied about blows everything out of the water.

The Dodgers' current TV deal runs out after the 2013 season and the new deal could reach a whopping $4 billion, according to the LA Times.

"None of this is lost on the new owners of the Dodgers," said Neal Pilson, former president of CBS Sports. "They have an opportunity to create a bidding war."

This bidding war would come from current Dodgers rights holder FOX Sports and Time Warner, which last year reached a $3 billion, 20-year agreement to broadcast Los Angeles Lakers games starting next season.

All of this is music to the ears of the Dodgers' new owners who look poised to make some decent coin on their recent $2 billion investment.

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Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/sportspage/~3/h0JI1saGdOQ/dodgers-tv-deal-2012-3

Minnesota Wild Vancouver Canucks Anaheim Ducks Dallas Los Angeles Kings Phoenix Coyotes

Hawks Fall in Shoot Out

It was 20 years ago yesterday, that a 19 year old Martin Brodeur played in his first NHL game. Since then (pre game stats) he has notched 651 victories while playing in 1,186 games. Add 118 (wow!) shut outs, all 3 of these NHL records, and you have a solid, Hall of Fame, career. He was the difference in this game, stopping some where around 38 shots, as the Hawks lost in a shoot out, in New Jersey, 2 - 1. Brodeur (26-21-4) went up against Crawford (27-17-5) at the Prudential center on Tuesday night. Crawford played well for the Hawks, Brodeur was just better.

The game marked the return of Steve Montador, out since Feb. 7 (concussion). The usual D man was played on the wing, as the Hawks dressed 7 defense men for the game. (Hjalmarsson, Seabrook, Leddy, Olsen, Oduya, & O’Donnell)  The rest of the lines were, as have been, lately. Hutton was the back up goalie (second time in as many weeks).  Emery was out (upper body?)

In the first period, it was all Devils. I mean really all. The Hawks could barely get the puck across center ice for the first 8 minutes and had NO scring chances at all. !0 minutes in, Mayers tested Brodeur and it was all Brodeur from then on. The Hawks had a failed Power Play—New Jersey #1 in the PK at almost 90%. The Devils also lead the NHL in short handed goals, proving that an aggressive Penalty Kill is the way to go. The Hawks went on the PK next and Sykora scored on a nice redirect in front. The period ended with the score 1 - 0 Devils. The Hawks surprisingly out shot them 13 - 11.

Source: http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.php/talk_hawks/comments/hawks_fall_in_shoot_out/

Los Angeles Kings Phoenix Coyotes San Jose Sharks New Jersey Devil New York Islanders New York Rangers

The Record Setting Blues

ST. LOUIS – With a 3-0 victory over Nashville Tuesday night at Scottrade Center, the Blues set a new franchise record with their 30th home win of the season, surpassing the previous mark (29) set by the 1980-81 team.  The Blues also tied a modern era (since 1967-68) NHL record with their 15th shutout overall this season and set a new team record for consecutive shutout minutes.  In addition, Brian Elliott set a new single-season Blues record with his ninth shutout of the year as well as set a new personal best and Blues record for consecutive shutout minutes.  Elliott also tied a Blues record for most consecutive shutout games with his third in a row.

Source: http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.php/hockey/comments/the_record_setting_blues/

Houston Astros Los Angeles Dodgers Milwaukee Brewers New York Mets Philadelphia Phillies Pittsburgh Pirates

Alex Oriakhi Granted Release From UConn, Conflicting Reports On Transfer Restrictions

Source: http://www.bcinterruption.com/2012/3/28/2907524/alex-oriakhi-granted-release-from-uconn-kentucky-north-carolina-duke-boston-college

Jorge Posada Lance Berkman Reegie Corona Juan Miranda Colin Curtis Kevin Russo

The Bigger Picture

Source: http://www.milehighhockey.com/2012/3/28/2907722/the-bigger-picture

Montreal Canadiens Ottawa Senators Toronto Maple Leafs Atlanta Trashers Carolina Hurricanes Florida Panthers


New York Knicks: Best and Worst Moments for Jeremy Lin and the Knicks in March

They say March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb.

After Linsanity prematurely bloomed in early February and the Knicks won seven straight—including a Lin-peak of 38 points in a defeat of the L.A. Lakers—a little frost swept in to remind Knicks fans of reality. New York finished the month 3-3.

They lost to the Hornets, giving New Orleans their seventh win. But then they beat Dallas.

Carmelo Anthony returned in a loss to the New Jersey Nets, but then a win against the Hawks.

Finally, the Heat were too much to handle, but the Cavaliers easy pickings.

March rolled in like a nor’easter and the Knicks found themselves pelted with losses, dropping their first six games of the month. In the tumult, Mike D’Antoni was swept away.

But the schedule relented and with Mike Woodson manning the front, the Knicks stormed back, subduing March and going 7-1.

But you know how this time of year is. The temperature varies. The Knicks still have to face the Orlando Magic and Atlanta Hawks (and the Cavaliers) before entering the final month of the season.

Begin Slideshow

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1122320-the-best-and-worst-moments-for-jeremy-lin-and-the-knicks-in-march

Seattle Mariners Tampa Bay Rays Texas Rangers Toronto Blue Jays chicago blackhawks columbus blue jackets

San Francisco Giants: A Look at Their Projected 2012 Opening Day Lineup

The winter seems like so long ago now that the team is in spring training, but the San Francisco Giants had quite an offseason.

They traded away a promising pitcher in Jonathan Sanchez for speed and offense in Melky Cabrera, and they traded pitching relief and aging speed in Ramon Ramirez and Andres Torres for an iffy Angel Pagan.

The team did all that while hunting for just the right amount of money to lock up their two franchise starting pitchers for several years. One (Tim Lincecum) was locked up, and the tenure of the other (Matt Cain) in San Francisco is still hanging in the balance.

After all that, here is the projected Opening Day lineup for the Giants:

1)  Angel Pagan OF
2)  Melky Cabrera OF
3)  Pablo Sandoval 3B
4)  Buster Posey C
5)  Brandon Belt OF
6)  Aubrey Huff 1B
7)  Brandon Crawford SS
8)  Emmanuel Burriss 2B
9)  Pitcher's spot

And what it should look like:

1)  Gregor Blanco OF
2)  Melky Cabrera OF
3)  Pablo Sandoval 3B
4)  Buster Posey C
5)  Brandon Belt OF
6)  Brett Pill 1B
7)  Brandon Crawford SS
8)  Emmanuel Burriss 2B
9)  Pitcher's spot

Of course, Freddy Sanchez would assume the No. 2 spot in the batting order once he returns. For now, it looks like we may be seeing a lot of Burriss, who is having a tremendous spring training so far.

We should save our judgements about him until after the first week of the season, though, as he has yet to hit consistently when called up to the majors.

Another note is that Pagan should be nowhere near the Giants' Opening Day lineup, given his terrible hitting woes in spring training.  

He just snapped an 0-for-24 streak at the plate on Tuesday. However, his speed and the fact he was a notable offseason acquisition for this team means that he is dead-set to start in the outfield on Opening Day.

The man who should replace him is Gregor Blanco, who has had as good a spring as any of the Giants. We can make a great case that Blanco, Hector Sanchez and Cabrera have been the hottest players on the team in spring training.

For how many disagreements we all should have with the projected Opening Day lineup, it needs to be understood that this roster is so much more apt to put up runs this season, as compared to last.

Of course, last season's lineup at year's end was historically unimpressive, so adding a healthy Sandoval and Posey mixed with a consistent Cabrera should make this team vastly improved on offense from last season.

If you like this article, check out my Bay Area Sports Talk blog

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1122281-san-francisco-giants-a-look-at-the-projected-2012-opening-day-lineup

Boston Bruins Buffalo Sabres Montreal Canadiens Ottawa Senators Toronto Maple Leafs Atlanta Trashers

Ultra-Secretive Peyton Manning Chase Included Decoy Vehicles And Coaches Hiding Under Hoodies

Peyton Manning Denver Broncos

Peyton Manning is a serious control freak who took hold of the entire situation regarding his free agent courtship.

The Denver Broncos were able to sign Peyton because they fed his ego and only played by his rules.

Those are the biggest takeaways from Peter King's behind-the-scenes look at how the Broncos landed Manning, featured in the April 2 issue of Sports Illustrated.

Although the Denver Broncos were early entrants in the Peyton Manning sweepstakes, many were still surprised when the news about him signing with Denver broke.

We now know that the Broncos were always the front runners, but the San Francisco 49ers and Tennessee Titans looked like better fits. (It also helped that in Denver, the offense would be altered to fit Manning.)

Here are a few other juicy nuggets from the SI story:

  • Peyton was in complete shock when the Indianapolis Colts released him, asking his longtime mentor and former coach David Cutcliffe, "What does a free agent do?"
  • Manning was very annoyed with the O.J. Simpson-like media following. So when he was ready to hear Broncos executive VP John Elway's sales pitch over dinner the team arranged for seven cars to leave the Broncos' facilities at the same time with a few of them going to the wrong location. Peyton jumped in a black SUV with tinted windows and the Denver media didn't notice.
  • In the middle of dinner with Manning, Elway received a text informing him that the Washington Redskins had just traded up for the second overall pick in the 2012 draft in order to take Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III. Peyton was "stunned" to hear the news, which told Elway all those rumors about Washington being in the running were true
  • Manning met with the Miami Dolphins in Indianapolis of all places, because he knew the annoying media wouldn't follow his every move there
  • Pete Carroll of the Seattle Seahawks flew in to Denver while Peyton was there in hopes of luring him to the Seahawks. Manning didn't like the surprise and told the team he wasn't interested
  • When 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh flew to watch Peyton throw at Duke, the entire thing was kept under wraps. Harbaugh first only watched from inside of a car parked near the field and then he and his offensive coordinator came out of the car to get a better view, but kept their hoodies on to avoid being recognized
  • In the end, Denver won out because they allowed Manning to dictate the terms from the get go and made him feel the most comfortable. Elway took a "What would I have wanted if put in a similar situation?" approach to luring Peyton and didn't give him the "hard sell"

King's entire piece paints the pursuit of Peyton as a clandestine chase worthy of a Hollywood thriller, but it goes to show just how coveted Manning was. Teams agreed to anything and everything just to get a seat at the table.

Read the rest of Peter King's Sports Illustrated story here →

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Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/sportspage/~3/RRrewQDLgSQ/how-denver-broncos-got-peyton-manning-2012-3

Matt Martin Frans Nielsen Dwayne Roloson Jon Sim Jason Arnott David Clarkson

The Boston College baseball team lost to cross-town rival Northeastern, 12-11, at Friedman Diamond...

Source: http://www.bcinterruption.com/2012/3/27/2907660/the-boston-college-baseball-team-lost-to-cross-town-rival

Anaheim Ducks Dallas Los Angeles Kings Phoenix Coyotes San Jose Sharks New Jersey Devil

Chicks and their Polls: Will Colorado keep playing or start golfing?

Source: http://www.milehighhockey.com/2012/3/27/2906203/chicks-and-their-polls-is-colorados-season-over

Pittsburgh Pirates San Diego Padres San Francisco Giants St. Louis Cardinals Washington Nationals Jonathan Albaladejo

Magic Johnson-led group wins bidding for L.A. Dodgers

Source: http://www.lonestarball.com/2012/3/27/2907586/magic-johnson-led-group-wins-bidding-for-l-a-dodgers

Hal Gill John Madden Petr Kalus Colton Gilies Justin Falk Robbie Eal

Boston Red Sox: John Lackey Proves He's Just Terrible

There are two things in this world that I can't stand: those intolerant of other people—and John Lackey.

I never cared for the man when he was in Anaheim and I cared even less for him when the Boston Red Sox decided to sign him in 2010.

I'm sick to death of his attitude and arrogant remarks, the latest only being another in a slew of stupidity.

In case you missed it, here we are in March of 2012, a full six months after the whole "beer and chicken" fiasco was exposed and five months longer than it should have taken Lackey to address the situation.

In a move that can only be classified as ill-advised, he went on the record by stating the following:

 "Guys having a beer after their start has been going on for the last 100 years,'' Lackey said (Boston.com). "This is retarded. It's not like we were sitting up there doing it every night. It's not even close to what people think.''

No, perhaps it was not, but let's face it: fans in Boston are tired of your act and tired of your 5.26 ERA in town. Voicing your opinion now about an issue that you should have saddled up and faced months ago is just poor timing and your choice of words was ever poorer.

I'm all for free-speech. I have to be, I'm a writer.

However, I believe in tact and courtesy.

He came back a day later and offered this apology:

"I apologize for my thoughtless choice of words that appeared in print earlier today. I meant no harm, and I am sorry to all I offended."

It just doesn't cut it for me.

There are very few things that light my fire, but having an apathetic, overpaid baseball player make silly and crass remarks out of sheer ignorance just gets my fire lit.

Okay, and it might be exacerbated by my dislike for Lackey in general. 

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1121958-boston-red-sox-john-lackey-proves-that-he-is-just-terrible

Brian Wilson Eli Whiteside Mike Fontenot Brett Pill Pat Burrell Jhan Marinez

LSB Video -- Roster Spot Battlin'

Source: http://www.lonestarball.com/2012/3/27/2905249/lsb-video-roster-spot-battlin

Andrew McDonald Matt Martin Frans Nielsen Dwayne Roloson Jon Sim Jason Arnott

Future N.C. State Wolfpack point guard Tyler Lewis takes skills competition

First-year North Carolina State head coach Mark Gottfried led the Wolfpack to the Sweet 16 in his first season. The program’s is bound for future success with a loaded recruiting class. Three NC State signees are set to play in the McDonald’s All-American game. Future Wolfpack point guard Tyler Lewis showcased why he should be [...]

Source: http://www.thesportsbank.net/college-bball/future-n-c-state-wolfpack-point-guard-tyler-lewis-takes-skills-competition/

Trent Hunter Andy Hilbert Bruno Gervais Dustin Kohn Andrew McDonald Matt Martin

Honus Wagner Rare Card Could Sell for Absurd $1.5 Million at Auction

Ask any avid sports card collector what the holy grail of the hobby is and they will all definitively give the same answer―the 1909 T206 American Tobacco Company Honus Wagner card.

There is believed to be only 60 such cards currently in circulation, and because of that, any of the Hall of Fame Pittsburgh Pirates shortstop's T206 cards fetch a pretty penny at auction. The latest Wagner card set to be auctioned could very well set a new gold standard in the world of trading cards, however.

According to Jim Salter of the Associated Press, 64-year-old auctioneer Bill Goodwin is selling a Wagner card owned by an unidentified Houston business man and expects that it could sell for as much as $1.5 million at auction. While Wagner cards have sold for more in private deals, none has ever gone for that much at auction.

With eight career batting titles Wagner is considered to be one of the best players of all time, but scarcity is what makes his card worth so much more than any other. According to Slater, Wagner's T206 cards were pulled from circulation after about 200 were made because he reportedly didn't want to encourage children to smoke, although he did endorse chewing tobacco at the time.

Since the card is sold for increasingly more money each time it is auctioned off, it shouldn't come as a big surprise that this one could go for as much as $1.5 million, especially since this particular Wagner card has been graded higher than all but five in existence.

The fact that a small piece of cardboard could sell for that much seems absolutely crazy, but it's the nature of the beast in the world of card collecting. If you want to own the best pieces, then you'll have to pay top dollar, and that is precisely what somebody will ultimately do.

For a normal person like you or me, it's impossible to imagine spending that sum of money on a card, but the person that wins this Wagner auction will undoubtedly be a multi-millionaire who can afford it. If I had that type of money to spend, I can't definitively say that I wouldn't pursue a Wagner card because it would give me instant credibility as a collector.

To a non-collector it probably seems stupid to spend that amount of money, but a Honus Wagner card isn't any different from stamps, coins or anything else of value that people collect. Whatever it is that you as an individual collect, think about whether you would be willing to pay top dollar for the cream of the crop if you had the means to do so.

My guess is that you would, and as a card collector, I would most certainly jump at the Wagner card if I suddenly had $1.5 million to burn. Not only would it give you an incredibly rare piece of history, but with the way the Wagner card appreciates in value, it's a pretty good investment for 20 years down the line as well.

It's something that those who don't collect cards will probably never understand, but I'll most definitely be envious of the person who lands the rarest piece in all of card collecting.

Source: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1121349-honus-wagner-rare-card-could-sell-for-absurd-15-million-at-auction

Eli Whiteside Mike Fontenot Brett Pill Pat Burrell Jhan Marinez Anibal Sanchez