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Old 12-02-2017, 05:00 AM   #1
arry J

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Default ew York come the 2nd of February, but if I had to pick to surprise
Alec Martinez scored at 14:43 of double overtime to give the Los Angeles Kings a 3-2 win over the New York Rangers in Game Five of the Stanley Cup Final, taking the series in five games, with three of the wins coming in overtime. Kevin Mchale Jersey . Martinez, the 26-year-old defenceman enjoyed a breakthrough season, scoring a career-high 11 goals and 22 points in 61 regular season games, then followed up with five goals and five assists in 25 playoff games and was one of three Kings to have at least 75.0% of the 5-on-5 shot attempts during Game Five. The Kings earned the win in Game Five, outshooting the Rangers 51-30, but with that many shots, both teams had opportunities. Each team found iron a couple of times in the extra frames, but the Kings controlled play, particularly after the first period. Shot attempts were even after one, but the Kings had 68.8% of the total shot attempts from the start of the second period onward and that relentless attack finally paid off when Tyler Toffolis rebound landed on Martinezs stick. It was a sensational run for the Kings, rallying from multi-goal and multi-game deficits throughout the postseason, winning their last four overtime games on the way to the Cup. Kings RW Justin Williams, who scored the first goal of the game, won the Conn Smythe Trophy, finishing tied for second in the playoff scoring race with 25 points (9 G, 16 A) in 25 playoff games, scoring two goals and five assists in the Final, when he was skating on what was ostensibly the Kings third line. Williams had the best plus-minus in the postseason (plus-13) as he was on for 23 goals for and 10 against during 5-on-5 play. Williams had a game-high eight shots and 12 shot attempts in Game Five. Williams was a deserving winner, on a team full of viable candidates. D Drew Doughty was a stalwart, finishing with 18 points, while averaging 28:45 of ice time per game. C Anze Kopitar was the playoffs leading scorer, with 26 points (5 G, 21 A), one point ahead of Jeff Carter, who anchored That 70s Line, with rookies Tanner Pearson and Tyler Toffoli on his wings. For their part, Toffoli and Pearson had the best possession stats for the Kings in the playoffs, and offered a glimpse at what could be a formidable line in the future. Pearson and Toffoli combined for 26 points (14 for Toffoli, 12 for Pearson) in the playoffs. Former Ranger Marian Gaborik, who tied Game Five early in the third period, led the playoffs with 14 goals, four more than Carter. Acquired from Columbus at the trade deadline, for Matt Frattin and a couple of draft picks, Gaborik was a difference-maker for a Kings team that was having trouble scoring goals. Rangers G Henrik Lundqvist stopped 48 of 51 shots in the deciding game, finishing the playoffs witha .927 save percentage. It was a terrific effort that ultimately came up short. Kings G Jonathan Quick wasnt at his best in the playoffs -- his .911 save percentage was well below his past couple postseasons -- but with the Kings controlling play in the Final, Quick needed to be good, not great. Rangers D Ryan McDonagh had an assist and played a game-high 42:12 in Game Five and led the Rangers in playoff scoring with 17 points (4 G, 13 A); this after going scoreless in the first 10 games of the playoffs. He hit the post on a great power play opportunity in overtime. Close, but no dice for the Rangers. Rookie LW Chris Kreider scored the Blueshirts second goal in Game Five and was one of their most dangerous forwards throughout the playoffs, registering 13 points (5 G, 8 A) in 15 games. Kreiders speed and physical game make him a threat, though it remains to be seen just how high his offensive ceiling may go. The story of disappointment for the Rangers lands on RW Rick Nash, who managed a total of three goals, despite registering 83 shots on goal, in the playoffs. That leaves Nash in rather select company of forwards that have had more than 70 shots on goal in a playoff year and scored three or fewer goals; the list includes Marian Hossa this year as well as Jonathan Toews and Tyler Seguin last year. Basically, this doesnt mean that Nash has forever forgotten how to score goals. That he finished seventh in the league in Goals/60 during the regular season is also evidence that Nash hasnt completely lost that skill. It was a bad time to go through that goal-scoring drought. In the end, the leagues best puck possession team hoists the Stanley Cup and looks like theyll have the horses to mount a strong defence next season. That the Final only went five games this year doesnt quite do justice to the tension involved in the series, with the Kings taking three games in overtime (two in double-OT) to dispose of the Rangers. These Kings didnt do it the easy way, needing seven games to win each of their first three series, but that heightened drama made for a satisfying conclusion to a brilliant postseason. Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook. Bill Russell Jersey .Y. -- The Buffalo Bills have fired receivers coach Ike Hilliard. Red Auerbach Jersey . To be fair, the celebrations are already anything but tame. Nerf ball tricks shots are just the tip of the iceberg for a group that has performed in zero gravity, faced pro-skateboarder Rob Dyrdek and an assembled team on the MTV series "Fantasy Factory", and even hit a basketball trick shot from a passing blimp. 403 Forbidden .J. -- The New Jersey Devils are so bad in shootouts, coach Pete DeBoer doesnt mind seeing his team take chances in the five-minute overtime.It is somewhat amazing that within 24 hours of one of the best NFL Sundays in memory, six head coaches (and likely most of their staffs) are unemployed. Think about this though: Mike Shanahan leaves with $7 million in his pocket, while Greg Schiano and Rob Chudzinski had three more years on their contracts, and will be paid out handsomely. I realize not all are as fortunate, but the majority of the time if you reach the head coaching level in the NFL, your bills are paid and debts are nonexistent. Its not the financial blow that hurts. It is more of a punch to the ego and a humbling moment. When you realize your mission is not going to be accomplished, that is taken personally, and its hard to take. Now, full disclosure in general, I am not a fan of football coaches. I have no doubt that is because my experience with most coaches was not very good. Most were anything but teachers. The majority of my coaches were experts at applying pressure and then dis-associating from the players when that tactic did not work or their own skill set did not provide an alternative. There are some great coaches in football no doubt but in my experience I have also seen a level of incompetence that is shocking. And it is prevalent at all levels. I often get asked why I dont coach, and I always answer with, "why should I?" Being a former player doesnt qualify me to be a coach, a teacher. That being said, there are a lot of good coaches without jobs today, and there are other teams still wavering on a decision. DECISION IN DALLAS In Dallas, I think they need to keep Jason Garret and stay the course. Look at Ron Rivera in Carolina and Marvin Lewis in Cincinnati. Logic may have dictated coaching changes for those teams in recent years, but they stuck with their people and now the Panthers are the NFC South winner and the Bengals are tops in the AFC North. Patience can pay off and too many teams dump good coaches too early. Take a close look at Dallas and you will see that almost getting to the playoffs was actually a pretty good accomplishment. Football teams are built around controllable programs that the coaches put in place, but much of their success comes down to pure luck. Things like drafting, teaching, developing and capitalizing on the "window of opportunity" are all relatively controllable. But luck can get in the way, especially when it comes to injuries. If you can keep your 22 starters completely healthy and on the field for a whole year thats good luck, not good coaching. And Dallas was destroyed by bad luck for the second year in a row when it comes to injuries. This was highlighted Sunday when they had to play a winner-take-the-division game against Philadelphia without their best player on offence (QB Tony Romo) and their leader on defence (LB Sean Lee). Good coaching kept the controllable parts moving effectively, though, and Garrett almost got the Cowboys to the playoffs despite the injuries. KELLYS HEROES On the opposite side, how about the job Chip Kelly did with the Eagles? Hes an endearing personality and he "did it his way." Kelly is known as an offensive guy, but one of the most impressive examples of his coaching ability was reflected in the development of linebacker Mychal Kendricks, a second year player out of the University of California. Great linebackers have to know what is going to happen before it actually happens, and Kendricks has developed that ability. That is not just a natural talent its partly a matter of studying and learning about your opponent in advance, which is a controllable issue a coaching issue. There is no luck involved in his development under Chip Kelly. NEVERMORE We will see a new Super Bowl champion now that Baltimore failed to make the playoffs something you could feel coming. After three narrow victories down the stretch, the Ravens lost by 34 to New England and then were dominated in Cincinnati on Sunday in a must-win game despite making four interceptions. I have all the respect in the world for Joe Flacco, but his body language on the bench sure seems to reflect disinterest. Compare his demeanor with Philip Rivers of the Chargers there is no comparison! It makes you wonder if the Ravens were suffering from burn out. It is never expected but it does happen in many occupations, and following their success last year, they sure looked burned out in Deecember to me. Gordon Hayward Jersey. DEAD MONEY DANGER In Oakland, they played the 2013 season with an astounding amount of dead money (roughly $45 million). Thats money they had to pay former players all of which counted against their salary cap. With the dead money off the books for 2014, the Raiders are suddenly cap rich. This is very dangerous as rarely can a football team be bought. Teams have to be developed, and the Raiders need to remember that they are exhibit A in that discussion. So how do they use that money wisely and successfully? Well if youre going to overpay somebody, than overpay a good quarterback. That is obvious. But depth players are critical. Your fifth defensive lineman, your sixth offensive lineman, those fourth and fifth receivers who can push for starting spots. On a 53 man roster, you have to project that the bottom third will eventually be your starters. Some may have to step in sooner than later because injuries always happen in football, so these players need to be ready and able. This off-season for the Raiders is critical for making decisions on these key personnel. They need to find a quarterback and then build a roster that can develop over time into a winning team around that quarterback. They cant shoot for the moon all at once. Ask Washington owner Dan Snyder how that works out. Speaking of the Redskins, Snyder has an interesting dilemma with quarterbacks Robert Griffin III and Kirk Cousins. With RG3 shut down for the season, Cousins played well against Atlanta, was okay against Dallas and not so good against the Giants. There is no doubt that RG3 will be the starter next year, but what does the team do with Cousins? Do you keep him as an above average back-up or test his increasing value on the open market? Just one of many problems facing the Redskins. KEEP CUTLER Marc Trestman has a similar problem with the Bears. He inherited a 10-6 team from Lovie Smith and finished 8-8. But under Trestman, the Bears offence flourished . Receiver Brandon Marshall is already a star, and Alshon Jeffery looks like another one. Matt Forte is a Pro Bowl back. Kyle Long and Jordon Mills played 16 games as rookies and played well. Jermon Bushrod and Matt Slauson earned their free agent value. The problem is what to do with the quarterback position after two players did well in the role. Jay Cutler is a pending free agent and after the big money has been thrown at Brees , Manning, Rogers, Flacco and Romo, he will looking for his fair value. Can the Bears afford his expensive ticket, and the mistakes that come with his gun-slinging ways? Especially when the much-cheaper Josh McCown was so good while Cutler was hurt? I think its a no-brainer for both sides. The Bears need to bring Cutler back, and he needs to re-sign fast. With all the weapons in Chicagos arsenal, and Trestman to guide the way, its a great fit. Especially because of Terstmans ability as a developer of quarterbacks. He may deserve a critical comment or two about the way the Bears defence folded, but he was brought in to turn the offence around and he succeeded in spades. Look for the Bears to go after defensive help in the off-season, something that is easier and cheaper to find than offensive skills players. REX STILL KING I usually watch the NFL Network for an hour a day to keep updated, and when I saw Woody Johnson announce that Ryan was to be back next year as coach of the Jets, I expected mild applause and pats on the back. What I saw instead was a unique reaction of adulation and sincere appreciation. That surprised me. Maybe Ryan is better in dealing with motivating and generating positive energy than I could understand, but that reaction said a lot of positive things about him. So from 32 teams starting the season as Super Bowl hopefuls, we are down to 12. All logic says it will be Seattle and Denver in New York come the 2nd of February, but if I had to pick to surprise participants, I like the Eagles and the 49ers. And finally, I always have to take a moment and remember that for 20 teams, the season is over. For the players, that means going from complete structure to no structure at all. No meetings, no practices, no games, no responsibility. Its a great feeling and dangerous time wrapped up into one. For these players, next season starts now. And off-season responsibility is step one to a championship. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys ' ' '
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