There’s no question Penguins vs. Capitals should have been the Eastern Conference Final.

Mens David DeCastro Jersey The narratives were alive and well in Washington on Thursday.

For all that’s said that the Capitals vs. Penguins matchups are more than Alex Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby, the two captains sure made Game 1 all about themselves. Crosby scored twice in 52 seconds to open the second, while Ovechkin kicked off a Capitals comeback with a goal 17 minutes later.
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It didn’t end that way, with Evgeny Kuznetsov scoring the tying goal eight minutes into the third and Nick Bonino countering with a backbreaker four minutes later.

Even still, in the Capitals’ 3-2 loss, the hockey world was given a treat in seeing Ovechkin and Crosby rise to the occasion. If the rest of this series is anything like Game 1, we are in for one incredible playoff series.

When Atlanta did make a run, cutting Washington’s once 20-point lead to just three, it was Wall who came up with a huge chasedown block before added a tough layup and pull-up jumper extending the lead.

These two could be the best two players in their second round series against the Celtics, and that’s a problem for Boston. (Isaiah Thomas should lap Beal, but they can at least play at very similar levels.)

Washington must have known this was possible all along for these two, but it’s still a glorious realization that they’re both finally reaching that potential.

The Kings suddenly have a promising young core with Willie Cauley-Stein, Skal Labissiere, and Buddy Hield. What they need is a point guard who can push the pace, get after it defensively, and put everyone else in a position to score. Fox fits the bill. He embarrassed Lonzo Ball and UCLA in the Sweet 16 and showed a unique ability to put pressure on opposing defenses throughout the year. He’d be a god send for Sacramento.

Oilers fans sing ¡®Star-Spangled Banner’ after singer’s microphone fails

For one, the dude did a really good job of adjusting on the fly after learning his microphone wasn’t working.

Secondly, for Canadian fans to jump in without hesitation may be even cooler. And to do it for another country’s national anthem makes it even more impressive.
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The United States and Canada, in general, are huge rivals, especially when it comes to hockey.

How many other countries would do the same for a big rival? And it makes you wonder if the U.S. would return the favor if we were in their shoes. I’d like to think so.

Let’s pause on that for a second. A lot of people are going to immediately dismiss KS’s scoring by saying we have enough offensive defencemen. This is a mistake, even before we get to Shattenkirk’s defensive numbers. Jake Gardiner’s career high in points (43, this year) is the only time any of the Leafs’ current top three have ever cleared 42 points the way Shattenkirk consistently does, and none of them has come close to KS’s high of 56 this season. He would still be the top offensive defenceman on the team, and he’d almost certainly add the most goals.
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The Leafs already score a lot? Great, then they’ll do even better scoring more. Having more offensive production is always a benefit to your team, and additional goals for are as worthwhile as fewer goals against. The Leafs can make room for Shattenkirk on one of their power play units, and do very well adding to a strength.

There’s no tenable argument against how good Shattenkirk is at preventing shots. Remember that sample of 111 3000-minute defenders from before? In Fenwick against per 60, Shattenkirk is first. He’s fifth in CA60, if you prefer that; sixth in expected goals against. And this is the class of NHL defencemen who he’s going up against.

Jack Ham and Jack Lambert are inner-circle Steelers all-timers

That freak athleticism goes a long way in explaining his success on the field. Watt is a three-down linebacker who can chase down quarterbacks around the edge or shoot gaps between blockers. At Wisconsin, he’d roam throughout the backfield to find weak points in blocking schemes, attacking to create havoc so he or his teammates could capitalize. Here’s an example of that cerebral pre-snap planning, courtesy of the Big Ten Network.

He also has the flexibility to shadow tight ends or drop into zone coverage, notching four passes defended and a pick-six last fall. Solid fundamentals — strong hits at the point of contact and good wrapping of ball carriers — make him a sound tackler. That, combined with his ability to attack and shed blockers, should make him the kind of defensive player whose name is called over the PA several times each game.

Jack Ham and Jack Lambert are inner-circle Steelers all-timers, just as critical to Chuck Noll’s teams as Greene and L.C. Greenwood. The franchise has had 17 linebacker Pro Bowlers, by far the most of any position. The Steelers sucked in the ‘80s, but Ham and Lambert eventually gave way to Jason Gildon and Joey Porter, two star outside backers, at the turn of the millennium.

Porter, James Farrior, Lawrence Timmons, LaMarr Woodley, and ageless wonder James Harrison have all keyed Super Bowl runs. A few of those occupy the top slots on the Steelers all-time sacks list, with Harrison at No. 1 with 79.5 career takedowns. The Steelers have had Hall of Fame-level QBs, but defense has been their central theme.

Linebackers are the ones who get cheered loudest when they run out of the tunnel at Heinz Field. They’re the ones whom we, as Pittsburghers, use to rationalize why other teams will always cower against us. (I’m not saying it’s a rational thing; it’s just a thing.) Pittsburghers love linebackers as much as they love eating french fries on their sandwiches, which is to say we really love them a lot.

Do-it-all safety Marcus Williams brings versatility to Saints’ secondary

Marcus Williams, the ball-hawking Utah safety with fantastic athletic ability, has been selected by the Saints with the 42nd pick in the 2017 NFL draft.

Mens Darren Fells Jersey The former Utes safety totaled five interceptions in each of the last two seasons, ranking second among Pac-12 players in both 2015 and 2016. Williams has the playmaking instincts and physicality to thrive at the next level.
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The free safety’s production speaks for itself. Williams was a playmaker throughout his collegiate career, totaling 11 total interceptions in three years. In 2016, the Utes finished the year with a 9-4 overall record, thanks in large part to Williams. One of the better run-stuffing safeties in this year’s draft class, Williams played a large part in Utah’s dominant defense which ranked 25th in rushing last year.

Harbaugh writes that Kaepernick’s decision not to stand for the national anthem before games last season boldly and courageously confronted perceived inequalities in our social-justice system. He notes Kaepernick was alone in that protest and adds:

I thank Colin for all he has contributed to the game of football as an outstanding player and trusted teammate. I also applaud Colin for the courage he has demonstrated in exercising his guaranteed right of free speech. His willingness to take a position at personal cost is now part of our American story.

Kaepernick remains a free agent this offseason, for reasons that likely have more to do with his activism than his on-field ability. Kaepernick’s football qualifications are certainly good enough for him to have a job, but it’s April, and he doesn’t.

Zay Jones wore an O.J. Simpson chase shirt while being drafted by O.J.s NFL team

The Buffalo Bills picked Zay Jones 37th overall in the NFL draft on Friday night. When the pick came in, cameras cut to Jones watching the draft on TV. This was his shirt:
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The shirt depicts a bunch of O.J. Simpsons — in a brigade of white Bronco SUVs — chasing a police car. Its a reimagining of the slow-speed chase Simpson and friend Al Cowlings led officers on in 1994, before Simpson was arrested on charges of double-murder. Simpson, of course, made his professional name with the Bills.
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Despite his historic season to cap off a three-year collegiate career, Foreman was still widely regarded as a second-tier running back in the 2017 class, behind talents such as LSUs Leonard Fournette, Florida States Dalvin Cook and Stanfords Christian McCaffrey.

Although his name was still called after players like Joe Mixon and Kareem Hunt, Foreman boosted his draft stock significantly with an impressive showing at the Longhorns Pro Day in March, clocking a 4.45 40-yard dash, 33 reps on the bench press and arriving at 61, 234 pounds — down 14 pounds from his listed 248 pounds while at Texas.

And heres Seahawks site Field Gulls on Griffin:

Standing at 60and possessing 32 3/8arms, Griffin possesses ideal size to plug in as a Seahawkycorner and should slot into Seattles rotation early. The Seahawks have not drafted a corner this high since Pete Carroll and John Schneider have come to town.

DeShone Kizer’s Sasquatch suit at the NFL draft is for a good cause

DeShone Kizer is dressed to impress for the NFL draft.

It¡¯s sponsored by Jack Links beef jerky (you may recognize the Sasquatch from their commercials) but it¡¯s for a cause — the company known for its cured meats teamed up with Kizer to support The Andrew Weishar Foundation.

Kids Heath Miller Jersey The Eagles and Cowboys played a close one this past season in October, which ended with Dak Prescott leading the Cowboys to a comeback victory.

Prescott¡¯s touchdown to Jason Witten in overtime sealed it, so you could understand why Eagles fans might be upset outside of the rivalry.

The crowds at the NFL draft are typically ruthless, with it normally being held in New York with plenty of upset Jets fans.

Philadelphia is another beast, and this is just a little preview of what we will likely see tonight, especially when Roger Goodell initially comes out to announce the first overall pick. New Rams quarterbacks coach Greg Olson believes that had plenty to do with the verbiage of an NFL offense.

A lot of things he was doing at Cal, he did it at the line of scrimmage with one-word codes, Olson told the Los Angeles Times. There¡¯s a little bit more to that in the NFL.

Kids Brooks Orpik Jersey Goff¡¯s difficulty with the NFL playbook looks like a hurdle for most of the 2017 class, as well. And many passers, like Goff, won¡¯t get much time to figure things out.

Tajh Boyd didn¡¯t play in an Air Raid offense at Clemson, but he admitted to Sports Illustrated that the spread concepts the team used made it tough for him in the NFL. As a Day 3 pick, Boyd didn¡¯t believe NFL teams had much patience for him to figure things out.

Dirk Nowitzki will return for his 20th season with the Mavericks

After playing his 19th season with the Dallas Mavericks, Dirk Nowitzki has informed the team he will return for his 20th NBA season, according to He will exercise his player option to opt into the final season of his two-year, $50 million contract.

Nowitzki joins just Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett, Kareem Abdul-Jabaar, Kevin Willis, and Robert Parrish as the only players in NBA history to play 20 seasons. He and Bryant are the only players to spend two decades with one team.

Note where Game 5, if it happens, would be played: April 26 at Oracle Arena. Now check out Chance the Rapper’s tour schedule this spring.

Chance is getting bigger and bigger, but I initially thought maybe he wasn’t slated to perform at Oracle. I saw him in Dallas last year, and he played at a large concert venue rather than an even larger arena. (Highly recommend it, by the way.) But …


We reached out to Warriors PR, and they gave us this statement.

When booking concert events at the arena during a playoff run, we typically schedule contingency dates for that event. The Warriors will have the priority on April 26th.

A formal announcement for the Chance the Rapper show is in the works, pending that the show will be moved.
There’s a good, maybe even great, chance the Warriors do sweep. That’s definitely possible, even though Portland is feisty and ended the season playing better basketball than when the year started. So it’s possible this all works out.

If not, and if you have tickets to both, start praying for a Golden State sweep. (Or just have a flexible schedule and you’ll be fine.) The Warriors will bring in at least 10 times the revenue that the Chance show will, and it’s televised. Of course they have priority. That’s no surprise.

Either way, it’s a nice little wrinkle if Golden State does go up 3-0.

Loose horse leads Philadelphia police on dramatic carrot-filled chase

The NBA Playoffs begin Saturday, but these NBA teams and players have been building up to this moment for years. Theyve honed their skills, sharpened their set plays, and built in different counters to keep defenses off balance. The game is breathtaking, but there is a technical side to it that fuels those amazing athletic feats.

Arizona Cardinals Kids Jersey This list will attempt to celebrate some of those cool nuts and bolts that make the NBAs athletic greatness possible. Itll require some close viewing to spot these plays and player quirks, but they appear all the time. Consider this a hunt for the Easter Eggs of the NBA Playoffs.

Last years list had 36 items. Several of those still apply this year, but weve added an additional 31 for you to find as you watch these games. Each of the 16 teams is represented at least once. If there are any other special plays or player quirks youd like to highlight, drop them in the comments section. These teams and players do amazing things that should be celebrated, and Im sure I missed a bunch.
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A loose horse running the streets in Philadelphia has been captured unharmed following a dramatic police chase:

The Philadelphia filly, not to be confused with the baseball team of the same name, was finally cornered by police and given carrots to calm her down. I wish someone would give me carrots to calm down.

Its unclear from where the filly got loose, but police believe this good horse escaped from Fairmont Park stables.

Psst, James Harden, it’s too late for people to change their NBA MVP votes

Chris Mannix on Isaiah’s emotional weekend.

Westbrook and Harden, who are good friends, aren’t communicating at all during their playoff series. By the way, Westbrook is leading 9-5 in Matt Ellentuck’s MVP Scorecard race, though I think that Spalding meme is extremely generous.

The Clippers lost in humiliating fashion on Saturday night. Don’t blame Chris Paul, writes Zito Madu.

I’m not going to say that the Wizards are a little goofy because I’m just not sure how far they are taking this “Death Row D.C.” thing, to be honest.
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Authentic Youth Johnny Damon Jersey This is just incredible trash talk from C.J. McCollum to Draymond Green.

The oldest basketball court in existence is in a Paris gym and is in terrible shape. From a stat perspective, Boise State is still one of the surest things around. The Broncos are projected 29th in S&P+, and their games can be broken into two categories: road tossups (four games with win probability between 50 and 55 percent) and likely wins (seven at 75 percent or higher). There are no sure losses, and if quality recruiting produces breakthrough guys, BSU will have another big year.

Those tossups make me nervous, though. BSU has figured out how to lose a couple of games it should win in each of the last two years, and, well, what if a couple of big, new contributors don’t emerge?

The Seahawks are among the most complete teams in the NFL

The Seahawks scraped out close wins against the St. Louis Rams and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Weeks 8 and 9, and there was some trepidation among the fanbase that the team was slipping. Last week, they bounced back in a big way with a 33-10 win over the Atlanta Falcons on the road.

The Seahawks are among the most complete teams in the NFL. They rank top 8 in the NFL in both total offense and total defense. They are No. 1 in the NFL in rushing offense (153.4 yards per game) and No. 2 in pass defense (178 yards per game allowed).

Authentic Womens Peyton Manning Jersey They’ll be without cornerback Brandon Browner for some time, but Harvin’s return on the other side of the ball should help offset the loss.

Elite Mens Tavon Austin Jersey The fourth-place team in CONCACAF goes into an intercontinental playoff with the fifth-place team in Asian qualifying. The average fourth-place hex team ends on 13.2 points, though this number is highly variable from cycle to cycle. This year, it鈥檚 tough to envision the third- and fourth-placed teams being separated by more than a point or two. The best ever fourth-place team had 16 points, while Mexico only needed 11 points to make the intercontinental playoff during 2017 qualifying.

Sean Donovan from The Phinsider addressed the lack of production from rookie Dion Jordan.

At one point the excuse was that he was a developing rookie. After a couple of solid outings in limited work, it became a bad joke. Now, Jordan’s lack of snaps is is a full-blown controversy. The Dolphins coaches refusal to increase Jordan’s workload is a mystery to almost all observers, and there isn’t any indication that it’ll change this season.