Leicester vs Aston Villa: Iheanacho tipped to lead Foxes attack

first_img Loading… Iheanacho To Lead The Line | 4-1-4-1 Leicester City Predicted Lineup Vs Aston Villa https://t.co/1Jr9V8wcJO pic.twitter.com/WDDuRolUi0— LeIcester City FC News (@2019Lcfc) January 7, 2020 Wilfred Ndidi might come into the first-team as he operates in a defensive midfield role. His job will be to provide adequate cover for the Leicester backline by breaking down Villa’s attacks on the counter. Hamza Choudhury and James Maddison could get an opportunity to play together as the box to box midfielders. The dynamic duo will try to create some decent goal-scoring opportunities going forward. Read Also: CAF awards: Mane claims Africa’s best player for 2019 Ayoze Perez is expected to operate on the right-wing while Harvey Barnes focuses on using his pace down the left flank after his goal-scoring heroics versus the Latics last weekend. Attack Kelechi Iheanacho will get another opportunity to lead the charge for the East Midlands giants up top. Rodgers might be inclined towards saving Jamie Vardy for Southampton’s visit of the King Power Stadium later this weekend. FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 Leicester City will play hosts to Aston Villa at King Power Stadium on Wednesday night hoping to secure a first-leg victory in the semi-finals of the EFL Cup. The Foxes have been enjoying an excellent run of form following their defeat at the hands of Liverpool on Boxing Day. Promoted Content7 Non-Obvious Things That Damage Your PhoneCouples Who Celebrated Their Union In A Unique, Unforgettable WayWhich Country Is The Most Romantic In The World?5 Of The World’s Most Unique Theme ParksThe Very Last Bitcoin Will Be Mined Around 2140. Read More11 Theories Why We Haven’t Met Any Aliens Yet7 Universities Where Getting An Education Costs A Hefty PennyThese TV Characters Left The Show And It Just Got Better6 Extreme Facts About HurricanesYou’ve Only Seen Such Colorful Hairdos In A Handful Of AnimeOnly The Chosen Ones Can Appear On-Screen Even After Their DeathTop 7 Best Car Manufacturers Of All Time However, the Villans could prove to be worthy adversaries if the East Midlands outfit get complacent in midweek. According to the4thofficial.net report, Brendan Rodgers is expected to go with a 4-1-4-1 formation, making a lot of changes to his first-team for this Midlands derby. Predicted lineup with 4-1-4-1 formation Defence Kasper Schmeichel is expected to return in goal for the Foxes after he was handed a rest in his side’s 2-0 win over Wigan Athletic last weekend. Rodgers might revert to his first-choice defensive duo of Jonny Evans and Caglar Soyuncu for this crucial League Cup semi-final first leg against the Villans. Midfieldlast_img read more

Football News No Spectators, No Coverage, No Foreign Media – North Vs South Korea Football Match Ends 0-0

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Football News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. Incheon: South Korea’s footballers had no idea their surreal World Cup qualifier in Pyongyang would be played in an empty stadium — a match Tottenham Hotspur star Son Heung-min described as “very aggressive” and one official likened to warfare. The contest against North Korea ended 0-0 on Tuesday, with FIFA president Gianni Infantino one of just a handful of spectators at a match almost completely blocked off from the outside world. It was the first ever competitive encounter between the men’s sides hosted by the North — a historic face-off between two countries still technically at war — but took place with no live broadcast and no foreign media in attendance.  The debacle raises doubts over the prospects for further North-South sporting co-operation, once a driver of nuclear diplomacy. Until the very last minute, the South’s team had no idea that even North Korean spectators would be absent.”We expected 50,000 people to come pouring in once the door opened but they didn’t come,” said Korea Football Association vice-president Choi Young-il as the team arrived back at Incheon airport early Thursday. “The gates never opened. I was really surprised. The players and coach were surprised too.”   Choi said he had asked a North Korean official about the absence of local fans, who retorted: “Maybe they didn’t want to see it.”  Tottenham’s Son, who captained the South Korean team, was taken aback by the Northerners’ rough tactics. “The match was very aggressive to a degree that I think it’s a huge achievement just to return safely without being injured,” Son said. “There was a lot of severe swearing.”  Choi added he had never seen such aggression on the pitch before: “It was like war.”   Nuclear tensions, Olympic doubts  Tuesday’s match came in the wake of a series of North Korean missile tests that raised tensions in the region, and after the breakdown of talks with the US over Pyongyang’s weapons programmes. Since the collapse of the Hanoi summit between North Koren leader Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump in February, Pyongyang has regularly excoriated Seoul, ruling out prospects of inter-Korean dialogue.  It is a far cry from the cross-border warmth of last year, when South Korean President Moon Jae-in seized on the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics to broker the Pyongyang-Washington discussion process.At the time, Moon and Kim discussed and agreed on further sports exchanges including a joint bid to host the 2032 Olympics. But the North’s official Korean Central News Agency issued only a two-line dispatch on Tuesday’s match, saying: “The game of attacks and counterattacks ended in a draw.” In a commentary Thursday the South’s Joongang Daily said: “We may just have to thank North Korea for sending our football team back home safely.  “How can South Korea think of co-hosting the Olympics with such a treacherous counterpart?” FIFA president Infantino said he was “disappointed” after attending the event and “surprised” by the absence of fans, along with other issues. Infantino has previously proposed the idea of the two Koreas jointly hosting the 2023 Women’s World Cup.Also Read | North Korea Successfully Test-Fires Submarine-Launched Ballistic MissileBut outraged South Korean fans, who had to settle for basic updates provided by FIFA throughout the match that were limited to yellow cards and substitutes, said they were fed up with sporting exchanges with the North.  “How can a country that blocks spectators and bans live broadcasts host the World Cup?” asked an online user. Another user added: “Don’t ever talk about joint teams with North Korea or co-hosting anything.”last_img read more

MILO Schools Football Tournament 2019 | CWSS, Lodge snag final semi-final spots

first_imgLINDEN’S Christianburg/Wismar Secondary School and Lodge Secondary have secured the final two spots in the ongoing MILO schools Football tournament.Following the final two quarter-final games at the Ministry of Education ground yesterday, the two teams had contrasting pathways to the next round.In the opening game, the Linden side was eager to show its worth against the West Coast Demerara side, Vergenoegen.The West Dem side wasted no time in showing their plans, getting a number of shots off within the first 15 minutes.However, it was CWSS, in the 18th minute, who scored the first goal– a curling free-kick just over 30 yards out which went over the wall and the Vergenogen keeper, nestling into the corner of the net.The CWSS (grey) enjoyed an easy second-half against Vergenoegen Secondary in their quarterfinal game at the Ministry of Education ground yesterday (Samuel Maughn photo)Vergenoegen were not about to take the game sitting down and a constant attack on the Linden side would finally yield the result they wanted when a counter-attack caught the linden keeper off his line in the 35th.Tyrese Lewis, three minutes later, restored the Linden side’s lead and the half ended that way.Two more goals by Lewis in the second half (70th and 72nd) ensured the Linden side cruised through to the next round.In the second game of the day, St Johns College could not overcome the one-goal advantage that Lodge Secondary had instituted in the 17th minute through Dorwin George.Meanwhile, in the semi-final lineup, CWSS will meet Annandale Secondary while President’s College plays Lodge Secondary next weekend.last_img read more

Point-counterpoint: New NFL Combine event

first_imgAckerstein:For some people, it?s a born trait. For others, it’s alearned one. But in any event, players should have their nightclub etiquettetested before being drafted into the NFL.Sure, pass-catching abilities and strength are importanttools by which a potential NFL player should be measured, but given all thenegative attention that can come with an unfortunate incident at a bar or stripclub, why not see how players handle themselves out on the town?Yes, players are interviewed by teams trying to get an ideaof what the players? characters are like, but that can only go so far.Remember, Pac-Man Jones was a top ten selection and these days it seems likehe?s more likely to score a lap-dance than a touchdown.There is a simple solution, though. The NFL should build amock bar inside the RCA Dome where the combine is held and videotape players asthey spend time inside of it.Possible drills within the bar might include how capable aplayer is at ?making it rain,? how quickly they can order a round of drinks andhow well their entourage can deal with crazed autograph-seekers and rowdy fans.Roger Goodell could even do some guest bartending.Along with watching tape on how proficient a player is aton-the-field actions, coaches would now be able see how their future playerswill hold up off the field. When it comes to the draft, franchises are lookingfor someone that can knock down passes, not shots. Nobody wants to waste afirst-rounder on Frank the Tank.Test them now, so they aren?t arrested later. Nightclubskills for the win.Mason:Strip club etiquette? Everyone should already know what todo. Be polite, tip well and don’t get into any altercations with other patrons.What players really need to know before going pro is how totreat their dogs. With the whole Michael Vick dog-fighting debacle leaving ascar on the face of the NFL, today’s young stars should be brought up to treattheir pooches with respect.What better way to instill this behavior than adding a dogshow to the current format of the NFL’s Scouting Combine? Roger Goodell should steal a page from the WestminsterKennel Club when it comes to putting these muscular athletes to the test. Letthe players bring their own dogs if they want, or just use a league-issuedpoodle. Think about it. What’s more grueling for a 350-pound offensive lineman:running the 40-yard dash or prancing around with a shaved poodle on the end ofa leash?I don’t know about you, but no one I’ve ever seen paradingaround a poodle has ever looked intimidating. And for that fact, this eventwill teach the future pros to have a sense of humility. Too often these days inprofessional sports, athletes feel like they can get away with anything. Makethem show a toy poodle, and they won’t be so self-righteous anymore.If the league adds this event to the combine, they coulddouble their market of viewers on television. Currently, the NFL Networkbroadcasts the combine live. If each player shows a dog along as well, thinkhow many hours of extra broadcast (and new fans) the network could pick up ifit teams with Animal Planet. It’s called synergy, folks.And after all, wouldn’t teaching strip club etiquette justplant bad ideas into the minds of these young athletes? Pair a quarterback up with man’s best friend, and he’ll bemore inclined to party with his retriever, not his receiver.Dogs at the combine equals dollars on draft day. Woof.last_img read more

Thompson emerges as contributor on Syracuse defensive line after injury, position change

first_img Published on September 23, 2013 at 11:29 pm Contact David: dbwilson@syr.edu | @DBWilson2 Ron Thompson thought it was just a groin strain.It was just a week before the start of his freshman season and the four-star tight end had a chance to be an immediate factor, but the injury relegated him to the sidelines.The next step was to get an MRI and figure out when he could get back on the field. The doctors took the scan and compared the two sides of his waist.“Whoa. We see something in your right hip,” Thompson remembered the doctors telling him. “Has it been bothering you at all?”Thompson had a blood flow problem in his hip. It would require surgery and end his season. Had it been caught later, it could have endangered his career.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“It was kind of shocking because I had never had a problem with it hurting or anything,” Thompson said. “It was just something they caught really fast and actually saved me.”A year after the surgery, Thompson is no longer saddled with the cumbersome expectations of being an untainted four-star recruit. He isn’t even a tight end anymore. Now he’s a talented, yet still untested, defensive end for Syracuse. And with an injury to starter Robert Welsh, his role could be expanding.After the diagnosis, Thompson said he could have never imagined himself in that position. Thompson was coveted by both the Orange’s offensive and defensive staffs, but Doug Marrone, then SU’s head coach, was an offensive-minded leader, unwilling to give up a potential star on that side of the ball.But even more alarming for Thompson was the lingering prospect that he would perhaps never play football again.“I’m not going to bullcrap you, I was kind of depressed,” Thompson said, “because there was a chance for me not being able to play football and I haven’t even got a chance to play in a game or anything.”The surgery was successful and he missed just one season. His start to 2013 was never in jeopardy, but he had to sit out the spring.Instead, he spent that season in meeting rooms with tight ends until just three days before the end of camp.Scott Shafer is in charge now. A year earlier, the defensive coordinator-turned-head coach clamored for Thompson to play on his side of the ball, but Marrone had the last say.“I had it in my mind as soon as he kind of switched, I was just like, ‘Yeah, I really see it coming now,’” Thompson said. “I started visualizing myself playing defensive end. I pretty much knew it was going to happen.”For the final three days of spring camp, Thompson went to meetings with the defensive line.“Those are the types of recruits you want,” Shafer said. “You want the recruit that the offense wants him, the defense wants him and they want him on special teams, and that’s Ron Thompson.”Thompson said the surgery wasn’t the reason for the position change, but he admitted he couldn’t imagine how things would’ve been different had he never gotten injured. He was a star at both positions for Southfield High School in Michigan, but was the No. 13 tight end in the country.He never had a preference for the position, but he now brings a unique perspective and skill set to SU’s defensive line. His athleticism is what really stands out to defensive coordinator Chuck Bullough.The already athletic Thompson is even faster now than he was as a tight end, which is a testament to the work of Will Hicks, SU’s assistant athletics director for athletic performance, during Thompson’s rehab.Thompson’s still “trying to learn how to be a D-end,” Bullough said, but he’s racked up nine tackles, including two for a loss.“He has brain farts at times,” said linebacker Marquis Spruill. “I wouldn’t have expected Ron to do as well as he does on defense, him being a tight end and coming into a whole different setting.”Thompson’s improved in the weight room — he can bench 225 pounds 20-25 times now, up from just 11 when he arrived at Syracuse — and as an athlete while he learns his new position.From time to time, he still gets a chance to hearken back to his offensive days. In practice last week, he dropped back into coverage and made a remarkable interception.“Oh, that’s his old tight end days,” Bullough said.The highlight so far, though, came when Syracuse was routed by then-No. 19 Northwestern on Sept. 7 in Evanston, Ill.It was just Thompson’s second game as a defensive end and he was faced with one of the nation’s premier offensive juggernauts.The new defensive end charged into the backfield and dragged down Kain Colter for his first collegiate sack.“It was like I was on the field,” Thompson recalled, “but I was really in my mind thinking like, ‘Wow, I just got a sack. Who would’ve thought?’”His dream was almost denied. But a year later, he’s finally living it.“I’m doing my dream,” he said, “playing college football.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Professors awarded money for research on safer batteries

first_imgUSC chemistry professor Jahan Dawlaty, University of Houston professor Yan Yao and SUNY Binghampton University professor Puja Goyal, received a $100,000 Scialog Award from Research Corporation for Science Advancement to explore the behavior of protons. They have proposed a safer battery model that relies on both non-flammable and aqueous electrolytes using an acid-based electrolyte and a plant-based anode.Improving the safety of batteries is a necessary part of the global development of renewable energy and electric-powered transportation, according to the RCSA. The most common batteries used today depend on flammable, non-aqueous electrolytes, according to a press release from the RCSA. Additionally, Brent Melot, USC assistant professor in the department of chemistry, and Louis Piper, a professor at Binghampton University, received the same award to improve battery performance and study redox activity, the process through which molecules gain or lose electrons, or anions.RCSA is a private institution that helps fund research in the physical sciences independently proposed by professors at U.S. universities and colleges. The Scialog Award is specialized to support research and building dialogue in the science community.“Ultimately, Scialog aims to advance human knowledge by empowering a national community of early career scientists with many promising years of research ahead of them,” the RCSA website says. “Through the give-and-take of community building, it is the Foundation’s hope that Scialog Fellows grow better equipped to tackle ever more challenging multidisciplinary problems.”RCSA Senior Program Director Richard Wiener said that funding high-risk research may not always produce worthy results, but when it does, it benefits the scientific and general community greatly.“Scialog is an experiment in accelerating the pace of breakthrough scientific discoveries,” Wiener said in a press release about Piper and Melot’s award. “Creative researchers like Yao, Dawlaty and Goyal represent the world’s best hope for a brighter tomorrow. RCSA is proud to support them.”last_img read more

Dunne to manage new Under 17 squad

first_imgPhoto © Tipp FM The positions of Michael Ryan as Senior Hurling manager and Liam Cahill at Under 21 are also expected to be confirmed.Meanwhile Liam Kearns looks set to remain on as senior football manager. Former All Ireland winning captain Tommy Dunne looks set to take the managerial post with Tipperary’s Under 17 hurlers.The Toomevara native has previously coached both the Tipp Senior, Under 21 and Minor squads as well as the Dublin senior hurlers.His appointment is likely to be ratified at the next County Board meeting at the end of this month.last_img

EPIC: Education and research is key to mitigating problem gambling

first_img StumbleUpon Related Articles Submit UKGC launches fourth National Lottery licence competition August 28, 2020 Share Winning Post: Swedish regulator pushes back on ‘Storebror’ approach to deposit limits August 24, 2020 In recent weeks, government officials have called upon the gambling industry to ramp up protection measures and provide additional funding for problem gambling treatment during the COVID-19 lockdown. Speaking to SBC, EPIC Risk Management CEO Paul Buck explained that while additional funding for treatment would be welcome, further support for both research and education is key in mitigating gambling related harm.SBC: Last week, DCMS released an open letter recommending operators implement a number of new social responsibility measures during the lockdown period. Do you think that these measures are sufficient? And how can operators ensure that they are advertising in a responsible manner? Paul Buck: In the current climate, we must actively ensure the signposting for support services is freely available and promoted by all stakeholders. Any increase in funding for treatment would be most welcome and much needed, however EPIC believes that both research and education must also be funded to enable a fit-for-purpose, end-to-end approach to mitigating gambling related harm. If we get the balance right, through effective research and education, trends can be better identified, more people can be educated across all age groups and demographics, people will be better informed and therefore less people will need to access treatment. Prevention is better than cure.When it comes to advertising, there are some obvious steps that operators can take to ensure that responsibility is at the forefront of any campaigns, especially so, given the current climate and lack of sporting events. Heavy promotion of multi-channel use and large sign-up bonuses should be avoided. Enticing sports bettors to access alternative products such as casino, poker and virtual sports should be approached with caution and strict limits encouraged. Safer gambling account management tools should be promoted to both new and existing customers and affiliates strictly monitored to ensure advertising through social media and via email remains responsible.SBC: Covid-19 and government restrictions have led to sports players being forced to stay home, with a lot of spare time, has this increased the risk of problem gambling among athletes? and how can this be tackled? Paul Buck: Undoubtedly covid-19 has increased the risk of professional athletes spending more time and money on gambling than they may have done previously. Sportsmen and women already statistically fall into the highest risk category when it comes to gambling related harm. Factors such as the lack of adrenaline buzz, absence of competition, isolation from teammates, lack of physical and mental stimulation and boredom are all significant risks that athletes will face during this period of lockdown. It is therefore even more vital that increased support is available through these worrying times.Individually, there are a number of steps that players can take to best equip themselves to ensure that gambling does not become a problem. Set limits in terms of time and money, take regular breaks, do not chase losses and most importantly, do not attempt to replicate the buzz and adrenaline of competition with gambling during this current period of uncertainty.For the clubs, it is vital to ensure that they are playing their part and creating the right culture, by ensuring that regular contacts are made to the players and signposting to welfare and support services is available, promoted and easily accessible.EPIC fully appreciates the risks that are posed to our clients within professional sport and we are actively making ourselves available to all. Through delivery of digital education and awareness sessions, provision of information packs and the availability of advice and support, we will continue to ensure that gambling related harm within professional sport is kept to an absolute minimum.SBC: The message and education that Epic offers remains important, how have you managed to adjust to continue spreading that message there during these times?Paul Buck: Like most companies, covid-19 has proved to be a challenge for us as a company, as historically and prior to the recent events, the majority of our education work has been delivered in a face to face setting. I am absolutely delighted however, with how my team has embraced this challenge and found ways of adapting to ensure our clients continue to receive the best possible service.Within 3 weeks of being locked down, we have pivoted to create a digital platform and a virtual remote training offering to successfully deliver our various programs through a virtual classroom solution. To date, we have delivered sessions to our clients within the gambling industry, professional sport and schools, with over 650 people in total educated and trained. In addition to this, EPIC has also been active in delivering our important message through other means, such as blogs, online resources, pre-recorded video content and interviews with various media outlets.While recognising the face to face nature of our sessions will always remain vital to what we do, the quality of design and delivery of this new digital world that we have been able to create and deliver in such a short space of time has been fantastic. The incredibly positive feedback and testimonials that we have received have shown me that digital resources will remain an integral part of our offering going forward post covid-19.SBC: The UKGC has placed a higher emphasis on Consumer Protections. How should these be developed under a continued but questioned ‘collaborative framework’ with industry leadership? Paul Buck: The only way to be truly collaborative is if all stakeholders work together towards the same goals. Input from all areas is key, including operators, RET providers, regulators and those with lived experience of gambling harm.Striking a balance between the respective ideas and goals of all stakeholders above is the key to success, which is something that I feel is currently not quite where it needs to be. There needs to be better recognition and acceptance of all opinions and goals and focus needs to be placed on collaboration, rather than division.Working together to identify and implement solutions to the most pressing issues quickly and effectively, will best protect customers from the most harm. Creating a schedule and timeframe for implementing changes and improvements will allow openness and transparency, while allowing all stakeholders to be held to account.SBC: And finally, can you tell us what you will be promoting at SBC Digital Summit? Paul Buck: The SBC Digital Summit is a perfect event to virtually catch up with our existing clients whilst connecting to new potential collaborations and partnerships. EPIC’s sector leading industry training is in high demand and we will be available to speak to new clients around our accelerated online & remote training proposition in addition to face to face. We are also keen to meet new connections from the US as we expand in the states on the back of our groundbreaking deal with the GVC Foundation US, announced in March, where we will be working with the major sports leagues and NCAA universities across 14 states. Share Better Collective cautious on quick recovery as COVID drags growth momentum August 25, 2020last_img read more

Cavaliers, NBA’s biggest laughingstock, fire another coach

first_imgBlatt was hired at Gilbert’s direction to develop what they thought would be their young team.Telling his people to think out of the box, they went all the way to Maccabi Tel Aviv to make Blatt the first NBA coach from Europe.Gilbert, who had pined for LeBron James’ return since he left in 2010, had decided it was finally time to move on … just as Bron began thinking about coming home from Miami.The Cavs were so out of it, they didn’t even save a maximum salary slot, much less ask James’ Cleveland-based people what Bron thought about hiring Blatt.Guess who turned out to be coming back to dinner?James’ return was only the latest act in an astounding run of luck that began in 2003, when the Cavs drew the No. 1 pick to get him.They have since drawn three more No. 1 overall picks, in 2011 (Irving), 2013 (Anthony Bennett) and 2014 (Wiggins), to go with two more in the top five in 2011 (Tristan Thompson) and 2012 (Dion Waiters).Their good fortune extended beyond that.Bron, who left in 2010, was so keen to come home in 2014, he forgave Gilbert’s never-to-be-forgotten rant, assailing “the cowardly betrayal” by the “so-called King.”Unfortunately, that left Blatt in a shotgun marriage with James, who kept him at a distance from day one.Deciding he needed the ball, Bron moved Kyrie aside and began running the offense without even mentioning it to Blatt.“No, I can do it on my own,” quoth Bron. “I’m past those days where I have to ask.”Blatt still got them to the Finals through the lame East draw in the only way he could — by accepting whatever James wanted.There remains a wide gulf between what the Cavaliers are and what they need to be.Last week they had the defending champion Warriors right where they wanted them.The game was in Cleveland. The Cavs were healthy at last after falling in the Finals without Kevin Love and, for all but one game, Irving.On top of that, they were ticked off at Steph Curry, who fired them up, saying he hoped the dressing room where they celebrated last spring’s title still smelled like champagne.The Warriors led by 43 points and won, 132—98.Steph outscored Bron, 35-16, dropping threes from ever farther out when the Cavs took ever harder fouls, with J.R. Smith ejected for running through a Harrison Barnes screen.For all the second-guessing that led to Blatt’s dismissal, the Cavs have a basic problem:The 40-4 Warriors, not to mention the 38-6 Spurs, play the game at a higher level.The Warriors’ 28.9 assists per game are the most in 26 seasons.Their Curry-Draymond Green pick-and-roll eviscerates defenses, with two defenders invariably going to Steph, giving Draymond his choice of open teammates (Klay Thompson in one corner, Barnes or Andre Iguodala in the other, Andrew Bogut or Festus Ezeli under the basket.)The Cavs’ idea of moving the ball is passing it around the outside.The Warriors and Spurs keep defenses on their heels, at their mercy.The Cavs fall back on isolations that attack loaded defenses, depending on Bron’s sheer talent.A Bron-Kyrie pick-and-roll would be devastating, but the Cavs don’t ever run it.James likes to attack from the top like a point guard. It remains to be seen if he’ll be more flexible for new Coach Ty Lue than he was for Blatt.If not, Gilbert will think of something else.If you can’t see him behind his curtain like the Wizard of Oz, you can always tell he’s around.Mark Heisler has written an NBA column since 1991 and was honored with the Naismith Hall of Fame’s Curt Gowdy Award in 2006. His column is published Sundays in Los Angeles News Group print editions. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Last week saw the firing of Coach David Blatt — after one season plus 41 games, seven months after taking them to the Finals, with the Cavs sitting No. 1 in the East.Blatt was actually on the job for a while, for a Cavs coach.Mike Brown, his predecessor, was fired after one season — in his second tour of duty with them, having been originally fired in 2010.• RELATED: Lakers’ Byron Scott puzzled over Cavaliers firing David BlattOwner Dan Gilbert stayed out of sight, as usual, but couldn’t hide the fact that he’s the problem if he went to Mars.center_img It’s been a long down period for the East in the 17 seasons since the Bulls’ heyday with Michael Jordan, in which the West has won 12 titles.The No. 1 problem is the Cavaliers who have been lucky enough for all the East teams put together as fortune delivered the game’s brightest young stars from LeBron James to Kyrie Irving to Andrew Wiggins.With them, the Cavaliers, the game’s highest-level laughingstock, have done … zilch.This is how.last_img read more

What effects will Phillies’ signing of Bryce Harper have on NL East?

first_img1. A bidding war may begin for Dallas KeuchelDallas Keuchel was one of the best free agent pitchers on the open market this year and yet, he remains unsigned on Feb. 28. This means even more now that Philadelphia has signed Harper.For one, the Phillies now have one glaring weakness: experience at the back end of their rotation. Keuchel would fill that void and instantly give them a rotation that could undoubtedly compete with the Mets and Nationals. Secondly, every other team in the NL East could use the 2015 American League Cy Young award winner.The Braves need an experienced starter, the Mets have had a lot of injury issues at the back end of their rotation and even the Nationals could use a player like Keuchel as a fourth starter in an already talented assortment of arms (this one is a little less likely).But what probably will happen now is the Phillies, who reportedly have interest in Keuchel, will start to go after the lefty. And the Braves should give them a run for their money because he would make a young rotation much more solid.2. The Phillies could go after Craig KimbrelLike Keuchel, Kimbrel was probably the best closer on the open market this year, but he still remains unsigned. The Phillies added David Robertson this year, which helps their bullpen, but they don’t have a sure-fire closer to lock down the ninth inning.Kimbrel could be that. If Philadelphia decides it would rather add to its bullpen than the rotation, this could be the logical move. Both players would cost a good bit of money, but the Phillies said they had “stupid money” to spend, and after getting Harper they might as well go for it.The Braves could also get in on Kimbrel, as well, as could the Nationals if they really wanted to, but that one seems unlikely. The Mets added Edwin Diaz and Jeurys Familia, so they probably won’t have interest. The NL East might be the most competitive division in all of MLB (apart from the Marlins), and there could be some reactionary moves made to the Harper deal.Here are three ways Harper’s signing could affect the NL East. Related News Bryce Harper wanted ‘longest contract possible’, Scott Boras says Bryce Harper signs with Phillies for $330 millioncenter_img Bryce Harper signing with the Phillies will send a ripple effect through the entire National League East.There isn’t a ton of time left before the start of the 2019 season, but because of the slow nature of this year’s hot stove, there are still plenty of things teams can do to improve their rosters. 3. Washington could consider locking up Anthony Rendon earlyWhile Bryce Harper was the well-known commodity in Washington, Anthony Rendon was probably the team’s second best position player while Harper was there.Since coming up with the Nationals in 2013, Rendon has slashed on average .285/.361/.469 while hitting 21 home runs and driving in 88 runs per 162 games. While Max Scherzer is now the face of the franchise, Rendon is the every-day star.Now that Harper is not coming back, Rendon, who will be a free agent after the season, is an absolute must-sign for the Nationals. He and Trea Turner should lock up the team’s left side of the infield for the next decade and Washington will have to pay for it. It may also want to do that sooner than later, and re-signing Rendon early may be a solid PR move for a franchise that reportedly tried to offer Harper $100 million in deferred money in the $300 million contract proposal it made in September.The Nats’ $300 million offer to Harper at the end of the regular season included roughly $100 million in deferred money.Why it would take a pretty major shift in direction for them to reunite with Harper now: Story with @Feinsand and @ToddZolecki : https://t.co/8x9CTSFj7r— Jamal Collier (@JamalCollier) February 21, 2019last_img read more