Capitals, Maple Leafs will play outdoor game at Navy

Two months after the Rangers and Sabres play outside at Citi Field in New York next New Year’s Day, the NHL will resume its Stadium Series for the fifth straight year.

But next year’s game will have historic implications.
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For the first time ever, NHL teams will play a regular-season game on the campus of a U.S. military service academy. The Associated Press first reported Saturday that the Capitals and Maple Leafs will play March 3 at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Md.

Crosby, who was hit with high cross-check courtesy of Capitals defenseman Matt Niskanen in Monday’s Game 3 loss, was at the Penguins’ facility but did not participate in practice earlier Tuesday. He will be evaluated again following Wednesday’s game.

Kids Carter Hutton Jersey Given Crosby’s history of head and neck injuries, the Penguins are expected to use caution when proceeding with their captain’s concussion. The 29-year-old superstar, who was named a finalist for the Hart Trophy on Monday, has missed dozens of games due to post-concussion syndrome in 2011 and two fractured vertebrae in his neck in 2012.

Barely five minutes into the first period, Crosby was cutting across the Capitals’ goal crease and falling to the ice when Niskanen made contact. Crosby needed to be helped off the ice to the Penguins’ locker room for evaluation and did not return to the game.

Niskanen was assessed a five-minute major and game misconduct for cross-checking, though it was reported Tuesday he won’t be subject to suspension for the headshot.

The Penguins additionally announced the loss of forward Conor Sheary, who was also diagnosed with a concussion after colliding with teammate Patric Hornqvist during Monday’s game.

NHL Expansion Draft: Brayden McNabb first to don new Golden Knights sweater

The Vegas Golden Knights are finally starting to look like an NHL franchise, getting new jerseys and a roster full of players on back-to-back nights.

Grady Jarrett Jersey At Wednesday’s NHL Awards show in Las Vegas, Brayden McNabb became the first player in the expansion franchise’s history to pull one of those gray home sweaters over his head. The Knights poached the 26-year-old defenseman from Los Angeles as one of their 30 expansion picks.

Kids Will Sutton Jersey The pending free agency of franchise cornerstone John Tavares has forced GM Garth Snow to retool a team that underachieved and missed the playoffs in 2016-17. Enter Jordan Eberle, 27, a six-time 20-goal scorer with the Oilers who could slot in on Tavares’ wing for the forseeable future. The cost was Ryan Strome, the fifth overall pick in 2011 who hasn’t quite found his scoring touch in four NHL seasons. Perhaps playing with Connor McDavid will help him along, too.

On the night of the Golden Knights’ roster reveal alone, GM George McPhree acquired 10 draft picks and six additional players by virtue of trades with other teams. He used some of those picks Friday and flipped a few players, too, but head here for a rundown of all of McPhee’s maneuvers from last week.

TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reported Tuesday at least a dozen teams have expressed interest in signing Joe Thornton should he decide to depart from San Jose, where he’s spent the last 12 NHL seasons. The rival Kings are said to be one of those suitors, according to LA Kings Insider, citing Thornton’s long list of connections to Los Angeles. The rub would be the Kings fitting Thornton into their $10 million of cap room, but he’s said to be willing to take a one-year deal for a shot at the Cup.

Thornton and fellow Hall of Fame-bound teammate Patrick Marleau are free agency’s wild cards, but right now the Sharks are still the favorites to keep at least one or both.

Utah’s Rodney Hood suffers ugly knee injury

Utah’s recent three-game win streak can be accredited to the stellar play of Rodney Hood. But the Jazz may be without their sharpshooter for an extended time after he suffered an ugly knee injury in Saturday’s 114-107 win over the Magic.

Hood hyperextended his right knee while driving to the basket for a layup with 2:54 remaining in the game. As he took off, Hood’s knee buckled and he fell to the court, screaming in pain.

Also not mentioned were players such as Amjyot Singh, Palpreet Singh Brar and Akashdeep Hazra 鈥?others holding huge roles in the immediate future of India Basketball. Amjyot Singh arguably is the best young Indian player, though as a 6-8 forward, he lacks the upside of Satnam. Amjyot last played in Japan and also was part of the prestigious Ludhiana Basketball Academy alongside Satnam. (Singh as a last name is exceptionally common in India, particularly in the state of Punjab, the home of Ludhiana and all of the players mentioned.)
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Authentic Mens Mariano Rivera Jersey For Satnam, this journey is his own because it’s the one he can control. And he embraces his role in the process, all the way down to making a documentary.

I told my dad that they want to make a documentary about me because, you know, I’m the first Indian if I go to the NBA, I’d be the first Indian, he said. One in a billion, you know? And my dad says, 鈥極K, if it’s good for you. Whatever is good for you. We all are happy. Good luck with everything.’ … My dad was so happy because he said, 鈥業 think it’s a great opportunity for us. For you, for your family, for another Indian kids. Everybody in India is very proud of you. If you do this, that could be the next level.’ So that made me feel very good.

NBA Draft prospect rankings 3.0: Markelle Fultz rises above rest of 2017 class

We’re midway through conference season in the 2016-17 college basketball season. That means we’ve gotten to know NBA prospects, have somewhat larger, 20 game-plus samples to rely upon and have been able to create some conclusions about where they fall within the grand scheme of the upcoming 2017 draft.

This is Big Board 3.0. It’s a still-developing document that, like the players enclosed within, will continue to mature as the season progresses. The biggest movers are Dennis Smith, Malik Monk, Justin Patton, Robert Williams, John Collins, Grayson Allen and OG Anunoby. Each of the top-30 has a brief explanation of his previous month, something quick on what makes him a special prospect, and even possibly a quick mention of weaknesses. As the year keeps going, we’ll continue to update this document. But heading to February, here’s what we’ve got.

In Charlotte’s defense, the team has lost six straight games and went 4-11 in January. Losing Cody Zeller to a quadriceps injury has hurt. Hibbert and Hawes could not replace his athleticism and constant activity. Those didn’t fit the Hornets’ future plans, but Steve Clifford may be able to unleash Plumlee as a “Diet Zeller.” If nothing else, the frontcourt is more athletic, and that was a major issue with Hibbert and Hawes on the floor against pace-and-space units.

Clifford has brought the best out of several of his players. He’s got a challenge in front of him with Plumlee, and this trade could end up looking awful if he’s unable to contribute.
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the Cavaliers rank 23rd in the league in defensive efficiency

While restricted free agency combined with individual maximum salaries makes the process very team-friendly for elite players, it gets substantially more complicated for anyone below that rarefied air. There, both prior teams and prospective teams have to define where a player would be properly paid along with what other offers could be on the table. Dallas’ case with Noel could provide an even more fascinating example of multi-stage logic.

If other organizations feel a restricted free agent’s prior team will match any non-outlandish offer, that will either scare them off or embolden them to push the prior team to the limit. After all, an offer sheet that gets matched leaves that team with nothing other than a grateful agent. While the new Collective Bargaining Agreement makes it more palatable to extend an offer sheet, those same positives and negatives apply with a tighter timeframe.

The Mavericks’ problem is that second camp, exemplified by Portland’s offer to Enes Kanter. Whether due to their own high evaluation of the talented center, knowledge that Oklahoma City could not lose him or both, Kanter ended up with a max offer sheet which included a fourth year player option. The Thunder ended up matching and are now dealing with an expensive roster, in part because of their $17 million backup center. That process may give Dallas’ front office cold sweats over the next four months, and for good reason, since it only takes one team going in that direction to create a very expensive dilemma.
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Authentic Mens Vladimir Tarasenko Jersey Currently, the Cavaliers rank 23rd in the league in defensive efficiency, according to NBA.com, not the kind of territory that breeds Finals contenders. In fact, only one other team since the league expanded to divisional play in 1970-71 has finished in the 20s in defensive efficiency in the regular season and still made the playoffs. That should ring a bell in Cleveland. It was the 2015 Cavs, ranked 20th in defensive efficiency two years ago.

It’s hard to say what options would be available to Wade should he opt out.

The second (and arguably more interesting) component in Noel’s case is projecting the value of his next contract. There are a series of different projections and calibrations that come into play, and Noel may be at the forefront of a few of them in the 2017 free agent class. Centers have been prized for years, but the combination of ample supply and reduced demand has cratered the market for centers around the league. While elite big men will always have value and drive interest, players outside of that class will have a tougher time moving forward.

Both Allen Crabbe and Tyler Johnson pushed their prior teams to the absolute brink with lucrative offer sheets from the Nets with both the Blazers and Heat matching. While those and Enes Kanter’s max offer sheet from the Trail Blazers in 2015 represent the outer limit on one end, there are also talented players like Khris Middleton and Will Barton who have either taken a lower salary or ended up with less due to the nature of the process.
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It’s hard to say what options would be available to Wade should he opt out. The Bucks and Nuggets were both interested in him last year, and would be willing to talk again this summer if he were a free agent. He could chase another trophy, perhaps as a bargain signee for a team like San Antonio or the Clippers. Heck, it’s a long shot, but he could join the pile on a bare bones contract in Golden State or team again with LeBron James in Cleveland.

Elite Kids Justin Britt Jersey But first things first. Wade will have to deal with his elbow injury. And before he has any free-agent dreams, he will have to determine just where Chicago is heading, something about which even the Bulls themselves seem unsure. Wade signed on last year to lead the Bulls and re-establish his roots. But after one turbulent year, he might be willing to pull up those roots.

Derrick Rose says Knicks are ‘more talented’ than the Heat

Dermontti Dawson Mens Jersey The Knicks (28-47) are eliminated from the playoffs. The Heat (37-38) have been on fire (pun intended) over the last few months, and have turned their season around into what currently would be a playoff berth.

Even though there’s a large difference in the win column, Derrick Rose feels like his team isn’t comparable to the Heat in terms of talent.

We’re really basic [with] what we do, Porzingis said, via ESPN. A lot of times it’s, especially one on one, whoever it is, myself, Carmelo [Anthony], Derrick [Rose], Courtney [Lee], we try to make something happen and that’s not how it’s supposed to be. It’s very random.
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The 7-footer also said, We don’t know the triangle that well, which isn’t exactly encouraging if you’re a fan of the team.

So, will the Knicks continue to confuse their players with the team president’s philosophy, or will they try and figure out something else? Although not officially eliminated, they are a long shot to make the playoffs, but it would be beneficial to end the season on a high note.

No, I think we’re more talented, Rose said Friday before the two teams play in Miami. But it shows that basketball is a team sport.

Johnson isn’t under any illusions that getting another, well, Magic Johnson for a new decade of Winnin’ Time, as he liked to call it, is virtually impossible. There are no guarantees that the Lakers, with unprecedented years of failure on and off the court, will be able to get an established star. This is a team that couldn’t even get a free-agent meeting with Kevin Durant last July. When they had a meeting with another All-Star, LaMarcus Aldridge, they memorably botched their initial sales pitch.

Heat’s Josh Richardson blocks Richard Jefferson into oblivion

e’re currently wondering if Heat forward Josh Richardson has ever heard the phrase, “Respect your elders.”

It’s a fair question to ask, considering Richardson blocked Cavaliers forward Richard Jefferson into oblivion on Saturday night.

Equally impressive was the hustle Richardson demonstrated to get to that loose ball: He jumped over Jefferson’s limp, rejected corpse.

Poor Jefferson. He was sure he had the easy basket, when out of nowhere comes Richardson to emphatically deny the bucket.

Well, Richardson has the advantage — he is 13 years Jefferson’s junior. Maybe Jefferson’s ring was weighing him down?

In any case, the Heat are taking the Cavaliers to the woodshed, and they led as much 30 in the third quarter of their Saturday showdown.

To do so, he must cash in on the vast potential he’s shown so early in his career. In 2013, he was plucked by the Bucks out of the obscurity of the Greek A2 league, a second-tier league that one scout termed, “the equivalent of Single-A baseball.” There was an air of over-hype around Antetokounmpo from the beginning—there wasn’t even agreement on how to spell his name, which showed up frequently as, “Adetokunbo”—as hazy reports of a point guard with Kevin Durant size trickled in from overseas.

For most, Antetokounmpo was too much a mystery, far more legend than reality. He would be a long-term project, scouts said, and it was assumed he would spend some time playing in Spain (he signed a contract with Zaragoza of the Spanish ACB League) before he made the jump to the NBA. One writer for a national website led off a story with the sentence, “Meet Giannis Adetokunbo, the next big European bust in this year’s NBA draft.”

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The Royals are all-in one more time with this core group

Authentic Womens Willis Reed Jersey Nightengale says Boston wants to do one-stop shopping to plug holes at third base and in the bullpen. Prado and Phelps fulfill those respective desires well. Prado is healthy after two trips to the DL because of hamstring injuries. He would be ideal for the Sox’s contact-heavy lineup (third-fewest Ks in the majors). Phelps, a right-hander, can be a multi-inning option out of the ‘pen. His poor April has mostly been forgotten; he compiled a 2.70 ERA over 30 innings from May 3 through July 9.

Seattle is in the American League wild-card race despite being a .500 team, and despite having just a middle-of-the-pack ‘pen (eighth in the AL in bullpen ERA, 10th in opponents’ OPS through July 19). The identity of the reliever possibly joining the M’s was unknown as of early Thursday on the East Coast. (UPDATE: Feinsand later reported the Mariners had been talking with the Marlins about right-hander David Phelps, but it was unknown whether Phelps was headed to Seattle.)
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The Royals are all-in one more time with this core group, and left fielder Alex Gordon and DH Brandon Moss are both hitting under .200 for the year. They could trade for McCutchen now, then move him again in the offseason. As for the Twins , Byron Buxton’s only 23 and still struggling (.216 average), and maybe he could benefit from learning from McCutchen. With the Yankees , he would be an outfield upgrade over struggling Jacoby Ellsbury, who has four homers and a .721 OPS, and then that duo could split DH duties next year after Matt Holliday’s one-year deal ends.

Point is, there are options, and it’s up to the Pirates to take advantage of those options and find a return that makes it worth trading McCutchen.

This ranking has a chance to zoom up if Deshaun Watson becomes the player

Ballard was left with a pretty smelly pile by predecessor Ryan Grigson, and he might already be regretting not staying put in Kansas City for the purge there later. He has a lot of damage to undo, in drafting and free agency. And he’s got to make a coaching decision, since Jim Irsay kept Chuck Pagano in place while making his oddly late move on Grigson.
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When the Glazers surprisingly fired Lovie Smith last offseason, a lot was lifted onto Licht’s shoulders. Dirk Koetter improved as head coach as the season went on. The additions on defense have been good enough to complement Jameis Winston and his growth. But Licht is still on the hook for the trade-up to draft kicker Robert Aguayo … who’s already being challenged for his job by Nick Folk. The competition is already making the Bucs look bad — imagine if Folk wins.

This ranking has a chance to zoom up if Deshaun Watson becomes the player — and franchise quarterback — most believe he will. As it’s been mentioned more than Smith surely ever wants to hear, everything else is in place for the Texans to make a Super Bowl run. However, Bill O’Brien is on the hot seat, because of the quarterback quagmire, and Smith will be judged on how he handles the head coaching situation, if it becomes one.
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Whether their impending quarterback problems land in Keim’s lap or Bruce Arians’, the Cardinals are going to have to address the position before the roster Keim built misses a golden opportunity. The clock is also ticking on Larry Fitzgerald’s career, but the drafting (David Johnson, mainly) and signings have been so solid that the Cardinals have a chance to keep contending.