One step forward , two steps back ….

–While the NFL world continues to show its idiocy , the sheer bewilderment and utter stupidity of sports’ fans over the stance taken by San Francisco 49ers’ quarterback Colin Kaepernick and his refusal to stand for the national anthem. When one considers the fact many of Kaepernick’s detractors are basing their criticism not only on race , but also their belief the player is a self-absorbed narcissist , speaks volumes as to the impasse which now can be seen in the nation along racial lines in large part, but also among the African-American race , questioning the player’s loyalties. Criticism has also come from current and former NFL players and also from within the political arena. Yet, those with their criticisms somehow seem to have forgotten athletes such as Muhammad Ali , Jim Brown , Kareem Abdul-Jabbar , Althea Gibson , Jackie Robinson , Bill Russell , Dave Bing , Arthur Ashe , Jack Johnson and several other prominent activists , who also happened to be athletes , questioning the direction of the country as to the ongoing social injustices taking place. Throughout history , athletes have questioned the social ills of this country , but it would appear , given the continued racial divide , its felt better that they be seen and not heard, especially if they just happen to be a minority.

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This story still rages on and somehow, no one questions he behavior of Maine Governor Paul LePage his calling for a race war and the gassing of the Democratic members of his state legislature . Somehow this type of behavior can be overlooked by a leading state executive , but the moment an athlete does something not deemed befitting within his normal parameters he will be questioned as to his loyalty and patriotism. One can consider the sheer and utter stupidity also of former New England Patriots’ safety Rodney Harrison and his claims of Colin Kaepernick not knowing what it is like to be growing up as a young black man in America , but his being from a white privileged background. Unfortunately, this was something of a rather asinine statement from the retired veteran , who had he chosen to do some research into Kaepernick’s background , he would find that the quarterback had been born of a white mother , African-American father and was placed into the adoption system at an early age , because of the criminal activities of both parents. The player would be adopted by a Caucasian family and raised as their own, without his ever being denied his racial ethnicity by his adoptive parents . Harrison has since apologized for his statements and with good reason.

With the beginning of the 2016 NFL regular season less than forty-eight hours away, teams are now settling themselves in for the onslaught for a long and arduous season. Chip Kelly has made the decision to install Blaine Gabbert as the starting quarterback for the team and while the speculation remains Colin Kaepernick will likely be traded or his career in the NFL coming to an abrupt end. I have to question whether or not Kelly will reconsider his position should the team start to lose with alarming regularity to begin their schedule ? Outside pressure is also being brought to bear on the current situation befalling Colin Kaepernick and the San Francisco 49ers with the Santa Clara Police Department stating they are not prepared to provide safety and security protection for the public for any games at Levi Stadium , home to the Forty-Niners , if the player is in the team lineup . One also has to wonder at this juncture, if the San ta Clara Police Department would be still willing to continue their strike action after it was revealed the Niners’ fullback Bruce Miller attacked a seventy-year old man in a vicious assault. Miller has since been released by the organization

Chip Kelly and his coaching staff will prepare the San Francisco 49ers for the opening game of their regular season schedule when they face the Los Angeles Rams . Blaine Gabbert might well have done enough to convince Kelly he is ready for this game , but Gabbert’s track record in the league is far from desirable . . From my own perspective , I believe the Forty-Niners are likely to struggle this season as I have no confidence in Chip Kelly as a head coach . It was an act of desperation on the part of Trent Baalke and CEO Jed York to hire the embattled head coach after his failures in Philadelphia with the Philadelphia Eagles .

The NFL season will likely be filled with controversy throughout much of its schedule and to my mind given the premise , this league loves controversy and willingly courts it with as avarice as one would expect of a sports’ entity built solely as a profit making behemoth .

In what will be his final year of an already Hall of Fame worthy career Boston Red Sox player David Ortiz will be hoping to leave the game of baseball on a high. Ortiz and the Red Sox are in the midst of a very tight AL wildcard race where absolutely nothing can now be left to chance , with there still be so much left on the line . John Farrell and his managerial staff will prepare the team for their scheduled game on Tuesday afternoon when they face the San Diego Padres at PETCO Park in San Diego , California .

The Boston Red Sox will be looking to make inroads into the divisional lead of the Toronto Blue Jays within the AL East . David Ortiz has been lucky enough to lead a very good Red Sox team which has seen many of their younger players stepping up to the plate. Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr have been ever-present with their play, while Rick Porcello leads the league in wins among starting pitchers in the Majors . Boston could prove to be among the most dangerous teams in the playoff hunt given their recent play , but a great deal of that will now be predicated upon the performances seen over the remainder of their regular season schedule in the month of September. David Ortiz for his part has been showing the form which has made him one of the most feared sluggers in all of baseball over the past ten years . Ortiz is considered to be among the front-runners for the AL MVP Award , an individual award the seasoned veteran has never won. Should the Boston Red Sox make the postseason , then I expect the team to hit a rich vein of form and be among the most competitive of the AL teams. Fans of the game know quite clearly what David Ortiz is capable of doing when he’s playing at the top of his form . As he leads , so the rest (teammates) will follow.

The Chicago Cubs are slowly making g believers out of everyone and that gratitude has to be placed firmly upon the shoulders of team manager Joe Maddon and his managerial staff . Maddon has seen his team run away with the NL Central division, having already secured their place in the postseason.Yet , the goal appears to be with the team , win out and win convincingly over their opponents as they round out their regular season schedule. On Tuesday night the Chicago Cubs were matched up against the Milwaukee Brewers in a game being played at Miller Park , in Milwaukee , Wisconsin. The two most impressive players on the Cubs’ roster this season have been Kris Bryant and Jake Arrieta , but a solid mention should also be given to Jon Lester who has been stellar as the number two starter on Chicago’s pitching rotation .

Joe Maddon and his team will renew their ongoing series with the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday afternoon looking to further increase their lead over a divisional rival. A one-hundred win season doesn’t appear to be beyond the Chicago Cubs , with the ball-club having already notched eighty-nine wins to their credit , with only twenty-four games left on the remainder of their schedule. As recently as 2008 and then again in 2015 , the Cubs came close to achieving that mark only to end up with ninety-seven victories in each of those seasons and also making the postseason . This year the ball-club will be hoping to make it to the Holy Grail with an appearance in the World Series itself and they will be looking to atone for the years of mediocrity since their last appearance in the ‘Fall Classic’. The Chicago Cubs’ highest pinnacle in the game came in 1908 when they claimed the World Series , with a series’ victory over the Detroit Tigers .

Prospects , prospects and even more prospects . At this time of the year with teams failing their passing grades , it becomes the time of the call-ups from the Minor Leagues and into the Majors. All of a sudden after several years of misspending and this season with there being a lack productivity from their offense, the New York Yankees have taken it upon themselves to flip the script and see what their youngsters can provide for this team. From my own perspective , I feel that both Joe Girardi and GM Brian Cashman have shown little faith in the farm system of the Yankees. Granted , this season , Luis Severino has stepped up to the plate as one of the few bright spots on the team alongside Masahiro Tanaka , Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez . There can be little doubt the New York Yankees are a long way off from where they need to be , in spite of the claims of Girardi the team is still in with a chance of making the postseason. Should they make it , then it will be a short-lived appearance during the early rounds.

Currently 3 ½ games out of a wildcard berth , the New York Yankees would have to pray the five teams ahead of them in the wildcard standings, will have an absolute meltdown over the next three weeks. Of late the Yankees have been playing above average ball, going 6-4 over their last ten games .

Joe Girardi seems extremely optimistic , but I do believe it is the only approach he can take for this team to the postseason, given the resounding disappointment they have been . At the start of the season there was a great deal of hope surrounding the Yankees. Mark Teixiera was thought to be injury-free and Alex Rodriguez after a stellar 2015 , the feeling was both of these All Stars would be producing . Instead, for the better part of this season , Teixeira has been on the DL , while Rodriquez has simply whiffed at everything sent his way over the strike zone. It was not at all surprising the decision was made by front office to release Alex Rodriguez , bringing to an end one of the most controversial careers in baseball over the last decade. Mark Teixeira formally announced that this season would be his last in Major League Baseball and his leaving the game sooner than expected. One could understand the reason why Brian Cashman and members of the Steinbrenner family came to the decision , given the financial commitment to both of these veterans at the start of the season exceeded $40 million .

As the New York Yankees wind down the remaining games on their schedule for the month of September , it is easy to suggest this ball-club is now playing for a sense of pride and self-respect. On Wednesday evening the Yankees will be playing host to the Toronto Blue Jays in a game to be played at Yankee Stadium , in the Bronx, New York . Marcus Stroman of the Blue Jays will be on the mound as the starting pitcher against a yet to be named opponent.

Is there anything that the Tampa Bay Rays are able to do competently other than to lose with alarming consistency ? Derek Shelton the team’s hitting instructor was fired and Chad Mottola was promoted from their Minor League System to succeed Shelton. I am not so sure what that will actually achieve for a team which has now lost their best player , Evan Longoria and the productivity he brings to the table for the Rays. Pitcher Chris Archer has only shown fleeting moments of brilliance and somehow in one of the more asinine moves of the season GM Matt Silverman traded Matt Moore to the San Francisco Giants and in the aftermath of the deal, he made the announcement the team was better for the trade , with the acquisition of the players brought in to facilitate the transaction . I have to wonder at the direction this ball-club believes it is heading in , never-mind the ongoing issue of seeking a new stadium , which will come at the taxpayers’ expense.

Kevin Cash and the Rays’ managerial staff have a team which is deeply devoid of talent on many levels . A last place finish within the AL East appears to be on the cards along with possibly the worst record in the AL . Something of which seems to be reminiscent of the old days when this franchise was regular seen as the “laughing stock” around the game of baseball under former owner Vince Naimoli and during the early years of the ownership under Stuart Sternberg . If there was any doubt as to how bad things have been going for the Tampa Bay Rays , then you only have to look at the team’s play over the course of the season their losses and the number of series won.

Kevin Cash and the managerial staff will be preparing the team for today’s game when the Tampa Bay Rays take to the field to face the Baltimore Orioles at Tropicana Field in St Petersburg , Florida . I expect the contest to follow the current and regular season series between the two teams , with the Rays once again falling to their divisional foe. From hereon-in whatever unfolds for the Tampa Bay Rays will be predicated upon the mindset of the team and managerial staff.

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Picture gallery . There is an accompanying narrative to each frame . Simply click unto that picture to view.

While the idiot sports’ fans , general public and media continue to weigh in on the controversy surrounding Colin Kaepernick it does seem somewhat asinine they have no sense of history and the fact athletes in the past have questioned social injustices taking place throughout the nation’s history , specifically over the last six-plus decades. For a country which professes to take injustices and seeks to address them with reverence , it is becoming abundantly clear this is all nothing more than a fallacy .

As the regular season of baseball comes to a close which teams do you believe will have the most to prove and are likely to viewed as contenders for the World Series ?

🙂

Tophatal ….. 2016/09/07
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102 thoughts on “One step forward , two steps back ….

  1. Week four of the College Football season sprang one or two surprises , but for the most part things went ahead as planned . Though it should come as no surprise to find out number-one ranked team in the country Alabama (Crimson Tide) is known to have paid their week four opponent $1.5 million merely to show up for what we know to have been an unmerciful execution . Kent State were the willing participants in this travesty , losing their game 48-0 . If this is what the FBS sees as being fair , with the games being non-competitive , then they might as well start laying out the customary white flags of surrender to the programs willing to be subject to such humiliation .

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  2. In the world of sport the news tragedies seem to mounting with reported death of PGA Tour legend Arnold Palmer . Long thought as the man who placed the sport on the map before the rise of his contemporary and fellow Golf Hall of Fame inductee Jack Nicklaus . Palmer a Grand Slam winner , died at the age of eighty-seven , is survived by his wife Kathleen Grawthorp , children, several grandchildren and great grandchildren.

    From left to right , Gary Player , Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus.

    Arnold Palmer was a trailblazer and brought the game to the masses , by way of the television coverage and became golf’s first real superstar . This would be transcended by the arrival of Jack Nicklaus , with the epic battles on the course which created one of sports’ great rivalries . Nicklaus as we know would go on to set many records in the world of golf which have yet to be surpassed.

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  3. So the Philadelphia Eagles (3-0) are one of the few unbeaten teams in the league after week three , with only tonight’s game to close out the week-three schedule. Rookie quarterback and Eagles’ starter Carson Wentz has been very impressive for the team as head coach Doug Pederson has to be impressed with what he has witnessed from his players . Also among the unbeaten teams are the Baltimore Ravens , Minnesota Vikings with their stymieing defense as well as the New England Patriots .

    The Philadelphia Eagles got by the Pittsburgh Steelers (2-1) blowing out the AFC based franchise 34-3 .

    There were several other games which brought about one or two major surprises . Perhaps the biggest of them all , might well have been the game between the Arizona Cardinals and the Buffalo Bills , which saw the home dismantling visiting Cardinals with a great deal of ease. Dak Prescott continues to guide the Dallas Cowboys in the absence of Tony Romo as the Cowboys beat a listless Chicago Bears’ team on their way to a lopsided victory winning their game 31-17 . For the Bears the defeat signifies a club without any real leadership among the players of coaching staff .

    One team with serious issues on their hands are the New Orleans Saints (0-2) who head into Monday’s game with so many questions being asked of the players as well as the coaching staff of Sean Payton . When the Saints’ play host to divisional rivals the Atlanta Falcons (2-1) , this game could very well signify the importance of their season . A loss could very well place Sean Payton in an impossible position with his having to quite possibly make drastic changes to the team’s lineup. There seems to be no poise to the team in spite of their offense being quite productive . Yet , for all of the yards being amassed by New Orleans as well as their veteran quarterback Drew Brees , the team’s defense has repeatedly unraveled , even in close-run games .

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  4. With Chris Bosh having failed a team medical it would appear the player and the Miami Heat are at an impasse. Team President Pat Riley along with the other front office executives now feel it would not be in their interest to retain the services of the veteran power forward and to honor the remainder of his contract. Without Bosh , the team in their current guise will be hard-pressed to compete in the NBA this upcoming season .

    Courtesy of The New York Times

    Chris Bosh’s Desire to Play Leaves Heat at an Ethical Crossroads

    By Scott Cacciola

    Chris Bosh, one of the top players in the N.B.A., has never caused trouble for his team, on or off the court. He has won two N.B.A. titles and been selected for the All-Star Game 11 times. The Miami Heat, however, do not want him to step on the court for them this season, or perhaps ever again.

    In one of the strangest and most ethically challenging standoffs in sports history, Bosh and the Heat are locked in a dispute over whether he should be deemed medically fit to play after dealing with serious health problems. With training camp scheduled to start this week, he says he is ready to go. The Heat say he is not.

    Bosh’s last two seasons have been cut short by blood clots. He has indicated that he has worked with a private physician to devise therapies that would allow him to play. The Heat are less certain.

    Bosh is owed about $76 million over the next three seasons whether he plays or not. So if the team is, in fact, looking out for Bosh’s welfare, it suggests an exception to the more common approach of pro sports franchises: pushing players to compete regardless of medical concerns.

    The Heat announced their conclusion, citing a medical exam, in the wake of Bosh’s recent emergence from a self-imposed cocoon of silence to wage a public battle with the team’s medical staff. Bosh has done several interviews with Uninterrupted — his former teammate LeBron James’s digital platform for athletes — in which he has sought to make his case.

    “Yeah, I’ll be there,” he said about training camp on a recent Uninterrupted podcast. “Will I be cleared? I don’t know. That’s out of my hands. I will play basketball in the N.B.A. I’m confident.”

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    Chris Bosh of the Miami Heat.

    While one can understand the possible reluctance by the Miami Heat to have Chris Bosh on the roster given his lack of playing time last season .

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  5. So with the deftness of the guillotine being brought down on the neck of a victim , the decision was made to fire LSU’s (Tigers) acclaimed head coach Les Miles . Having won a national title with the program , Miles was never able to follow up that success, as he waned within the aura of the always competitive Alabama (Crimson Tide) within the Southeastern Conference (SEC) and on the national stage . A poor start to the season has led to the decision along with the inconsistent play of the team and coaching acumen by Les Miles’ staff. An interim coach or a known well established will either step or there will be an immediate hire by the school’s Athletic Director makes a new hire.

    Week five and the LSU Tigers are set to play Missouri (Mizzou Tigers ) in a game scheduled for 1st October , 2016

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  6. Week four of the NFL season will once again have a Thursday Night Game where the participants will be the Miami Dolphins facing the Cincinnati Bengals in an all AFC clash between two of the worst teams in the conference. Injuries have played a part in the lack of success for both teams but their underlying issues stem from the fact both are not deeply talented rosters. Andy Dalton of the Bengals along with AJ Green are by far the best players on this Cincinnati team . Bengals’ head coach Marvin Lewis and his coaching staff know this is a game which has to be won if they are to have any chance of staking a claim within the AFC North this season.

    Adam Gase in his first season as the Miami Dolphins head coach has seen his team fail at just about every obstacle to start their season . Ryan Tannehill continues to be one of the most overrated quarterbacks in the entire NFL as well as being one of the most overpaid players at this position in the league . Tannehill has proven to be an immense disappointment to the Miami Dolphins during his career with the franchise.

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  7. With the NBA preseason just over a week away beginning on the 4th October , transactions are still taking place . The Boston Celtics have pulled off a coup with the signing of veteran Al Horford to team deeply in need of a veteran presence as well as a proven scorer to aid the Celtics’ offense . This Brad Stevens’ coached team played competently during last season .

    From left to right , Wyc Grousbeck, Danny Ainge , Al Horford and Brad Stevens .

    Al Horford joins a team which will be brimming with confidence this upcoming season and I believe a likely contender for a playoff berth this season ! The Celtics’ preseason schedule begins with a game against the Philadelphia 76ers , who will have their rookie sensation Ben Simmons looking to justify the organization’s faith in making him the number one overall pick in the NBA Draft . The Sixers’ will be under a new coaching staff , having some made some major changes within their front office , coaching and playing staff from last season. They were such a bad team , that a great deal of the blame has to be placed upon the shoulders of team’s billionaire owner Joshua Harris who in recent years , has spent more time making non NBA business acquisitions than taking an active interest in the franchise.

    It will be interesting to see if this Philadelphia 76ers’ team can truly excel and have a better record (10-72) than witnessed last season .

    From my own perspective , I believe the Boston Celtics will have a better record than their Eastern Conference counterparts the Philadelphia 76ers , while also making the NBA Playoffs ! Boston’s front office led by owner Wyc Grousbeck and GM Danny Ainge have sought to be frugal in their spending , if not cautious , as they seek to lead this franchise with a degree of fiscal accountability and well-being. Whether or not the addition of Al Horford adds to their success remains to be seen , but it certainly improves the overall look of the roster.

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  8. It’s over ! No more questions or answers need to be sought . Evidence was there last night for just about everyone to bear witness to as the Cincinnati Bengals crushed the Miami Dolphins in a truly lopsided game. Before anyone starts to make excuses about pre-game injuries and other issues , do bear in mind this Dolphins’ team was never that good to begin with. Head coach Adam Gase and the Miami coaching staff are chasing rainbows , pixie dust and the proverbial pot of Leprechaun’s Gold with their fantasy of seeking to become even moderately competitive on any level . The game result 22-7 , wasn’t ever reflective of how incompetent the Miami Dolphins were throughout this game .

    For the Cincinnati Bengals , this result placed them back in the divisional race among their rivals.

    I don’t believe Adam Gase has anyone else he can call up from his depth chart to replace what already are an incompetent bunch of players !

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  9. So last night’s result between the Miami Dolphins and Cincinnati Bengals , was it really that much of a surprise ? At no point in this game did the Dolphins really show any discipline as a team with the play of Ryan Tannehill emphasizing how much of a liability he has become to the team rather than an asset. The quarterback’s play over the course of his career with the franchise has been uninspiring to say the very least.

    Week five will provide the chance for the Miami Dolphins to make light work of the impoverished Tennessee Titans .

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  10. With less than a week to go before the NBA preseason schedule tips off officially on the 6th October , 2016. In 2015 the preseason was an indicator of things come . Uncertainties will certainly encompass several teams after their off-season maneuvers . Perhaps the biggest beneficiary of this all might well have been the San Antonio Spurs who after the retirement of Tim Duncan were able to acquire veteran power forward and center Pau Gasol . The Spaniard should provide a great deal of offense to a team which was among the most productive in the NBA last season.

    San Antonio Spurs’ head coach Gregg Popovich and the coaching staff will be cognizant of the fact his players team will be seen as among the favorites this season as they prepare for the start of their eighty-two game regular season schedule . San Antonio’s first game of the preseason will see them facing the Phoenix Suns , with their first game of regular season being against the Western Conference champions the Golden State Warriors . The regular season series between these two teams last season , were very competitive on all levels .

    Pau Gasol of the San Antonio Spurs

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  11. Week five of the College Football season kicks off with several games tonight with a full schedule of games on Saturday 1st October , 2016 . With Les Miles’ abrupt firing by LSU (Tigers) after a disastrous start to their season and it could be Miles’ troubles were simply brought on by complacency and his players not being on board with his strategies .

    The LSU Tigers will be in action when they face Missouri (Mizzou Tigers ) in a Southeastern Conference (SEC) match-up between these two teams .

    NCAA Football and the week five schedule

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  12. Week four now beckons in the NFL and several teams up to this point are having disastrous seasons , leading to a great deal of speculation that at least more than one NFL coach could be dismissed before of just after mid- season if things continue at their current pace . Notably at the head of line as to which NFL coach could fall are Rex Ryan of the hapless Buffalo Bills and not to go unnoticed Miami Dolphins’ head coach Adam Gase in his first season with the franchise. Gase’s situation is not being aided by the continually poor play seen by quarterback Ryan Tannehill . ESPN analyst Stephen A Smith might believe Jay Cutler is the worst quarterback in the NFL , but Ryan Tannehill cannot be far behind based on the results seen so far with the Dolphins.

    Of the unbeaten teams the most impressive could very well be the Minnesota Vikings (3-0 ) along with the Baltimore Ravens (3-0) . Not to be left out of the equation are the New England Patriots ( 3-0) , where both Jimmy Garopollo and Jacoby Brissett have led the team to their unbeaten run to start their regular season. Tom Brady isn’t eligible to return the Patriots until week five. Barring an injury , it would create something of a calamity for Patriots’ head coach Bill Belichick . Though it has been rumored Belichick has even toyed with the idea of having Julian Edelman take snaps with the first team , due to his experience as a high school and former college quarterback .

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  13. It’s now coming down to the wire as the MLB season comes to a close for 2016. Despite the claims of New York Yankees’ manager Joe Girardi that his team was capable of coming from behind to claim a wildcard berth , the Yankees have failed miserably , simply not living up to lauded expectations. Now they’re intent to reward Alex Rodriguez for his contributions to the organization , by offering him a front office position .

    Rodriguez for his part has offered nothing of note to this team over the course of his season while being handsomely rewarded for his mundane efforts. The same can be said of his teammate, Mark Teixeira and the lack of leadership shown by both of these veteran players. Now we have the idiocy of fans and analysts alike , claiming the Yankees will be in good hands in terms of their long-term future. Just because one or two players called up from the Minors have shown some potential, it is by no means a guarantee of any future success. Neither has been the fact the franchise has made onerous mistakes over the course of the season with their dealings , seeking to get better. GM Brian Cashman is as much to blame for the Yankees’ plight as much as the players , coaching staff and the entire front office by way of a lack of leadership and consistency .

    The New York Yankees will close out their regular season by playing their remaining games against the Baltimore Orioles their AL East divisional rivals. Saturday afternoon will pit Wade Smiley of the Orioles facing the Yankees’ Luis Severino in a game to be played at Yankee Stadium.

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  14. Bearing in mind how horrendous things were for the Philadelphia 76ers last season , which ended with a 10-72 record , one of the worst in recent NBA history. Now comes word the 76ers’ first round and top pick in the NBA Draft , Ben Simmons has suffered an injury which will shutter his preseason as well as possibly missing the first month ten or two of the regular season for the team . Sixers’ front office executives as well as members of the coaching staff have to be perturbed by this latest debacle.

    Courtesy of ESPN.com

    Sixers rookie Ben Simmons fractures bone in right foot

    Ben Simmons has a broken bone in his right foot, and it’s unknown how long the No. 1 overall pick will be sidelined for the Philadelphia 76ers.

    Simmons was injured Friday during the final training camp scrimmage at Stockton University in New Jersey.
    The Sixers said Simmons rolled an ankle, and X-rays and an MRI revealed a fractured fifth metatarsal.

    In almost all cases, the fracture of the foot’s fifth metatarsal is known as a Jones fracture, according to ESPN medical analyst Dr. Mark Adickes. Athletes with this injury typically undergo surgery.

    From left to right Sixers’ GM Bryan Colangelo , Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot , team owner Joshua Harris and Ben Simmons.

    The estimated time frame for a full recovery from this surgery is around eight weeks, according to Adickes.

    Simmons, a forward from Australia, played one season at LSU. He missed time early during his stay with the Tigers while waiting for an ankle injury to heal, and he left an NBA Summer League contest in July after suffering cramps in both legs.

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    Last season Joel Embid was a Philadelphia 76ers’ player missing much of the year from the team’s lineup . Head coach Brett Brown wasn’t able to muster anything positive from his players during the season. Elton Brand a seventeen-year veteran of the NBA is now in his second spell with the franchise after a much-traveled career . Brand remains a vocal leader , but now with a younger core of players around him , it will be interesting to see what the 76ers can offer their fans this season.

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  15. Micky Arison and Pat Riley of the Miami Heat could very well end fighting a battle in the court of public opinion concerning their treatment of veteran player Chris Bosh . Having been subjected to a full medical examination , results of which have not been divulged to the public in any great detail. The Heat’s medical team declared Bosh unfit to play and it would appear to be a move which has caused some consternation between Chris Bosh and the entire Heat organization . Bosh is still owed a considerable sum on the remainder of his contract and it is not clear whether or not the Heat are prepared to offer a buyout or have the player return to their ranks. Riley insists Bosh’s career is essentially over after he was advised of the results by the Heat’s medical staff. Chris Bosh still believes he is capable of playing at a high level in the NBA and remain effective.

    It is quite possible if this situation becomes prolonged, then the NBPA (Players Association/Union ) could very well intervene on Chris Bosh behalf , in his wish to either return to the Miami Heat or his being offered a buyout of his contract. This is becoming a public relations’ nightmare for Heat and how they continue to handle the situation. Pat Riley seems to have driven a considerable wedge between himself and all three of the Heat’s biggest stars over the past six seasons. The departure of LeBron James and his return to the Cleveland Cavaliers , had more to with a clash of characters , between James and Pat Riley , Head of Basketball Operations. During this off-season, we have also seen the Heat’s reluctance to re-sign Dwyane Wade , who left the franchise as a free agent to sign with the Chicago Bulls where he will be lined up alongside Jimmy Butler .

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  16. Luke Walton will begin his first season in charge of the Los Angeles Lakers as their new head coach , bringing along his own coaching staff. Noticeable among this all, will be the fact , for the first time in over eighteen years Kobe Bryant will not be among the names on the Lakers’ roster . Bryant announced his retirement prior to the end of last season after a stellar career with the franchise.

    Lakers’ head coach Luke Walton.

    It would not be impolite to suggest the Los Angeles Lakers were simply abysmal under Byron Scott and his staff of last season , where the play of the team left a great deal to be desired . In spite of the coaching acumen of Luke Walton , I am not so sure the the team in its current guise will be competitive enough within the Western Conference much less the rest of the NBA . Within the conference the Los Angeles Lakers were among the worst performing teams in 2015 . It’s difficult to suggest which players among the current Lakers’ roster will be there to take the lead and provide the offense needed to steer the team. Without Kobe Bryant there were few players on the roster of last season who averaged double-digits in scoring, much less provide an effective all-round game.

    The Los Angeles Lakers will begin their preseason schedule with a game the Sacramento Kings on the 4th October , 2016. The team’s regular season schedule begins on the 26th October when they face a newly revamped Houston Rockets’ team.

    Los Angeles Lakers news

    Tophatal …….. 2016/10/02 03:55 am

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  17. Just when you thought things couldn’t get weirder in the NFL the unexpected tends to happen as witnessed with yesterday’s results . The New England Patriots (3-1) somehow somehow found a way to lose , unable to muster any points in their loss to divisional opponent the Buffalo Bills . This victory might well have been what saves the job of Rex Ryan and his entire coaching staff , but it is still early days yet . New England still retains the lead within the AFC East . but will have the luxury of seeing the return of Tom Brady for the team’s next game in week five when they are due to face the Cleveland Browns (0-4) in an all AFC clash .

    So the story continues for the moribund and now hopeless Miami Dolphins as Ryan Tannehill continues his downward slide into mediocrity for the season . Tannehill and the Dolphins fell to the Cincinnati Bengals (2-2) in a lopsided 22-7 road loss where the visiting team looked hopeless in every aspect of the game .

    NFL news

    NFL standings (division)

    Tophatal .

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  18. Hard to believe last season’s NFC champions the Carolina Panthers are now struggling with a 1-3 record which places them in a three-way tie in the NFC South behind the division leading Atlanta Falcons (3-1) , where Falcons’ quarterback Matt Ryan is off to a blistering start in the league, on pace to throw over 5,000 yards for the season as well as in excess of 48 touchdowns for the year.

    Matt Ryan of the Atlanta Falcons.

    For reigning League MVP and Pro Bowl quarterback Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers (1-3) are having an different season , off to a rather unimpressive start to the season. Newton and the Panthers fell to their divisional rivals the Atlanta Falcons (3-1) in a high-scoring game , with the Panthers , where the visiting team never got into a consistent rhythmic cycle against the Falcons. Newton was injured in the contest and it was left to his backup Derek Anderson to try and resurrect the game for the Panthers. In week five the Carolina Panthers should have an easy time , as they face another divisional rival the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-3) in a game to be played at home in-front of what should be a sold-out crowd.

    Cam Newton of the Panthers.

    Matt Ryan as he pursues a season of greatness will seek to lead the Atlanta Falcons past the unbeaten Denver Broncos (4-0) led by their rising star quarterback Trevor Siemian .

    NFL news

    NFL standings (division)

    NFL standings 2015 (week four )

    Carolina Panthers news

    Tophatal ……..

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  19. Hard to believe last season’s NFC champions the Carolina Panthers are now struggling with a 1-3 record which places them in a three-way tie in the NFC South behind the division leading Atlanta Falcons (3-1) , where Falcons’ quarterback Matt Ryan is off to a blistering start in the league, on pace to throw over 5,000 yards for the season as well in excess of 48 touchdowns for the year.

    Nothing seems to have gone right for the Carolina Panthers this season and while some might believe the Panthers erred on the side of caution in allowing Josh Norman to leave as a free agent to sign with the Washington Redskins . Others might well believe this was a gross mistake by the front office and their not wanting pay the defensive end . Sunday’s loss by the Panthers was an embarrassment for the team , in particular with reigning League MVP and Pro Bowl quarterback Cam Newton having a very indifferent season by his own lofty standards . Panthers’ head coach Ron Rivera and the coaching staff have to be extremely disappointed with the displays and performances witnessed at this point of the season. Defensively , the Carolina Panthers have a great deal of work to do on both sides of the ball.

    Carolina Panthers news

    Tophatal

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  20. The fallout has began and after a disastrous season where they failed to win the NL East or obtain one of the two wildcard berths within the NL has left the Miami Marlins making the decision to discard the team’s hitting instructor Barry Bonds as well as the third base coach . Marlins’ manager Don Mattingly may not have been a willing proponent of the move , but it is clear it does have the blessing of owner Jeffrey Loria and his fellow executives within the front office .

    The Marlins’ franchise is still reeling from the death of their All Star pitcher former NL Rookie of The Year , Jose Fernandez . And while there seems to be mounting speculation concerning his death in a boating accident , might well have been alcohol-related. This whole issue remains matter of conjecture and speculation. Until the autopsy findings are known there is not a great deal which can be done.

    Courtesy of New York Post

    Don Mattingly couldn’t take Barry Bonds anymore

    By Zach Brazilla of the New York Post

    That didn’t last long.

    Barry Bonds’ tenure as Marlins hitting coach was a one-and-done proposition, as he was let go after just one season, according to Jon Heyman of TodaysKnuckleball.com.


    Former Marlins’ batting instructor Barry Bonds.

    The 52-year-old Bonds publicly said he wanted to return in August, but apparently the Marlins didn’t want him back. SiriusXM’s Craig Mish reported that Bonds’ “commitment level dwindled” during the summer, and manager Don Mattingly called him out for the lack of effort.

    According to The Post’s Kevin Kernan, who spoke with an MLB coach, Mattingly would have gone so far as to step down down as manager if Bonds returned for another season.

    The Miami Herald reported that Mattingly declined to evaluate Bonds when asked a few months ago.

    ———————————————————
    Click on link to read this article in full.
    ——————————————————–

    In closing out the final ten games of their regular season schedule the Miami Marlins were an abysmal 3-7 . It now remains to be seen what moves are to be made by GM Michael Hill as the Miami Marlins seek to get better for the 2017 season. It has been several years since the Marlins made the MLB postseason . In 2003 the Miami Marlins made it to the World Series , where they would defeat the highly placed favorites the New York Yankees in a riveting six-games series 4-2 .

    Miami Marlins news

    Tophatal …..

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  21. Week four of the NFL season closed out with a Monday Night Game which fielded the New York Giants taking on the Minnesota Vikings in an all NFC clash. As to the greatness which is Eli Manning , the Superbowl winning quarterback has begun to show that he is now in the waning years of his career and clearly no longer worthy of a six-figure contract , much less the claims that he is a leader. Minnesota snuffed out a Giants’ team which was ill-prepared for this Monday Night Game .

    The New York Giants’ coaching staff has to be worried about the lack of effort and performance being shown by several veterans and younger players on the roster so early in the season. If the saying is true , ” you’re only as good as your last game “, then clearly there are several issues which now need to be addressed by the New York Giants right across the board. .

    New York Giants news

    Tophatal ………………

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  22. Well the 2015 MLB postseason begins today with the AL wildcard game featuring the Baltimore Orioles who will be the guests of the Toronto Blue Jays , which will be played at the Rogers Center in Toronto, Ontario,. Regular season games between the two AL teams have proven to be competitive.

    The NL wildcard game will feature the New York Mets hosting the San Francisco Giants at Citi-Field in Flushing , New York on Wednesday evening . The Mets will be seeking to prove last season’s appearance in the postseason wasn’t a fluke while also seeking to prove they’re the equal of the Giants.

    MLB news

    MLB postseason schedule

    Tophatal ……..

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  23. So it all came down to defense , play it and you can win , falter and you will lose . So went the story of the New York Mets as they fell to the San Francisco Giants at Citi Field on Wednesday night . Postseason hero Madison Bumgarner was emphatic with his performance as he slayed the Mets almost single-handed in this contest. Granted , Bruce Bochy’s players were more than up to the task as the team simply overpowered the impoverished Mets and its lineup . So much for the vaulted pitching of this Mets’ roster which failed to meet expectations.

    Where the New York Mets now go from here will be based upon the decision making of senior front office executives Sandy Alderson and JP Ricciardi who will continue to rue the day they allowed Daniel Murphy to leave as a free agent. Murphy has since gone on to provide the Washington Nationals with even more firepower to the team’s offense and their winning the NL East as well as postseason berth as a divisional series’ participant.

    New York Mets news

    Tophatal ………

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  24. The NFL is now beginning to show signs of life and in some cases the death knell might well have been launched for a number of teams. Last night’s game featuring the Arizona Cardinals lay waste to the San Francisco 49ers (1-4) already abysmal and controversial season. Forty-Niners’ head coach Chip Kelly’s head should now be placed firmly on the chopping block , along with that of his entire coaching staff as well as GM Trent Baalke . This team might be the worst in the entire NFC at present based on their play , without delving into the off-the field concerns surrounding Colin Kaepernick .

    Five games into the season and if Chip Kelly hasn’t yet figured out that quarterback Blaine Gabbert is not the answer , then there needs to an adjustment and the reinstatement of Kaepernick into the starter’s role. The fans may not welcome Colin Kaepernick back into the fold , but clearly when the Forty Niners are struggling in every facet of their game , then something needs to be done. Blaine Gabbert continues to be more of a liability to the Forty Niners than he is an asset .

    The San Francisco 49ers’ 33-23 loss to the Arizona Cardinals at home , further played into the woes of the Niners and places their season in further jeopardy altogether. Personally, I do not believe they are capable of recovering from this misfire and I do not think Chip Kelly can last the entire season if things continue to run adrift under his watch !

    NFL news

    NFL team injuries

    NFL week five schedule

    NFL standings

    NFL team and player stats

    Tophatal …………

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  25. The NBA preseason schedule has begun and over the next three weeks we are going to see what these teams are made of before starting the regular season schedule. Last season’s beaten NBA Finalists the Golden State Warriors are off to an unbeaten start . Next up for Golden State will be a game against the Denver Nuggets between these two Western Conference teams .

    NBA news

    NBA standings

    This month in NBA history

    Tophatal ………….

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  26. What does it say about the game of baseball when two of the most successful clubs this season now find themselves on the brink of elimination at this stage of the postseason. The Boston Red Sox (0-2) and the Texas Rangers (0-2) now are facing an uphill task to play themselves back into contention in their respective ALDS (divisional series) .

    David Price of the Red Sox is having a postseason to forget , having now posted an 0-9 record in postseason starts . Not the sort of return which was expected of a player being paid in excess of $21 million this season. Boston has fallen apart at the seams in their two games played against an inspired Cleveland Indians’ team managed by former Boston Red Sox manager Terry Francona . Francona starts with the distinct advantage of knowing a great deal about the core of the Red Sox roster as well as the mindset of the opposition being faced. This Indians’ roster has simply risen to the occasion while making light work of their ALDS opponents.

    It is hard to see how the Texas Rangers can now overcome their series against the offense-minded onslaught of the Toronto Blue Jays . Texas’ chances are diminishing with each passing second and in game-three they will need to be firing on all cylinders when they take to the field at the Rogers Center in Toronto , Ontario on Sunday evening.

    John Farrell , manager of the Boston Red Sox will be under increasing pressure for his team to deliver when they face the Cleveland Indians in a home game for game-three at Fenway Park , in Boston Massachusetts on the 9th October .

    MLB news

    Tophatal ………………

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  27. So instead of focusing his attention on the revamping of the New York Knicks , perhaps taking a leadership role and showing a degree of maturity. Knicks’ forward Carmelo Anthony has sought to be somewhat critical of crosstown rivals the Brooklyn Nets and their newly acquired player Jeremy Lin . Last I looked , neither the Knicks or Nets had anything to offer their fans last season. Barely competitive at all , both franchises will use the preseason to assess their respective rosters while head coaches Jeff Hornacek of the New York Knicks and Kenny Atkinson of the Brooklyn Nets will be looking for something positive from their teams .

    Carmelo Anthony of the New York Knicks .

    Regular season meetings between the Brooklyn Nets and New York Knicks were far from flattering for the reputations of both franchise last season. Om paper the Knicks would appear to be a much better roster than the Nets and it will be interesting to see how these two teams will fare during their regular season match-ups this upcoming season. The first of the pairs’ four regular season meetings will take place on the 9th November , 2016 at Madison Square Garden in New York City , New York .

    Jeremy Lin of the Brooklyn Nets .

    Already a ten-year veteran in the NBA , the window of opportunity for Carmelo Anthony is quickly beginning to close, as he sees a number of his contemporaries from the 2003 NBA Draft having gone on to achieve playoff success, winning an NBA championship . Anthony has never won the League MVP and his biggest successes have come from being part of the US Men’s National team which has won the FIBA World championship and multiple medals at the Summer Olympics .

    NBA news

    Tophatal ………………

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  28. Corey Seager and his teammate Clayton Kershaw have the Los Angeles Dodgers on the brink of making another appearance in the NLDS . Taking an early 1-0 lead against the Washington Nationals the Dodgers will be looking to move closer and close out the series , bringing about an abrupt end to the Nationals’ season . On the mound for today’s game at Nationals Ballpark in Washington , DC will be Rich Hill of the Dodgers against Tanner Roark of the Nationals .

    Los Angeles Dodgers news (headlines)

    Washington Nationals news

    Tophatal ………….

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  29. The New England Patriots (3-1) will welcome back several players to their starting lineup when they take on their week five opponents the Cleveland Browns (0-4) whose season is already mired in mediocrity beyond being injury-riddled. Patriots’ head coach Bill Belichick will have Tom Brady , Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski all inserted in Sunday’s lineup and it bodes well for New England against a defense which is among the worst in the entire NFL . Brady and the Patriots will likely resort to the passing game , as he makes use of the team’s receiving corps . LeGarrette Blount , New England’s main option with the rush offense will still get his touches, but I believe Bill Belichick will simply allow his veteran quarterback to play his own game under the watchful eye of offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels .

    The injuries to Tom Brady’s understudies , Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett while not foreseeable, also offered New England’s coaching staff the opportunity to see what the future might hold for the franchise. Neither Brissett or Garopollo would not disappoint during their starts this season . The lone negative on the Patriots’ season was their being held scoreless in their week four loss to the Buffalo Bills .

    For Hu Jackson and the ailing Cleveland Browns this is not the game where I believe this team would want to seek their first win of the season. I am not so sure when the Browns will get their first win of the season but it is not likely to come in Sunday’s game. At this point last season both teams were looking to situate themselves within their respective divisions .

    NFL schedule week five and team injuries

    New England Patriots news

    Tophatal ……..

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  30. This could very well be the game of the day in the NFL as the unbeaten and first-placed Denver Broncos (4-0) will take on the Atlanta Falcons who are led by a rejuvenated Matt Ryan who might be having the best year of his career in the NFL. Opposing Ryan will be the Broncos’ Trevor Siemian in a contest between these two first-place divisional teams. A loss for the Falcons would bring them back closer to the pack within the NFC South where the other three occupants within the division are having struggles of their own.

    Tophatal ………….

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  31. The hype has already began , with analysts and fans alike asking if the Cleveland Cavaliers can make a successful defense of the title won last year , even if series itself became very controversial . Granted , the losing finalists the Golden State Warriors had the chance to put the series beyond the control of the Cavaliers , had they taken every opportunity which came their way. Yet , at the end of the day, one has to give credit where it is due and the Cleveland Cavaliers are to be commended for their series’ victory.

    Both of last season’s finalists will start afresh with new rosters after some off-season transactions by both Cleveland and Golden State. Perhaps, the biggest surprise of them all was the move of multi-scoring champion and a League MVP , Kevin Durant and his wish to leave the Oklahoma City Thunder to join his new team the Golden State Warriors. There Durant will join a formidable lineup which includes Steph Curry , Klay Thompson and Draymond Green .

    Kevin Durant and his new teammates have gotten off to a reasonable start this preseason . At 2-1 Warriors’ head coach Steve Kerr will assess his players during the exhibition season seeking to see what his best lineup might well be. Golden State’s next scheduled preseason game will be against the Denver Nuggets on the 14th October , 2016 . Their regular season opener provides the fans with the opportunity to see them in action against the San Antonio Spurs .

    Finals’ MVP and current face of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ franchise , LeBron James will be seeking to add to his already extraordinary accomplishments when leads the Cavaliers into battle this season. A relatively modest start to the exhibition schedule and it seems clear James wants this team to play with the consistency seen through much of last season . In their last preseason game the Cavaliers got by the Philadelphia 76ers with a great deal of ease . No doubt hoping to emulate last season’s regular season mark , if not better it , Cleveland will be hoping to get off the a raucous start this upcoming season. Their season opener will be against the New York Knicks in what is sure to be a contest in front of a sold-out crowd at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland , Ohio,,

    NBA news

    Cleveland Cavaliers news

    Golden State Warriors news

    NBA schedule 9th October

    Tophatal ………..

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  32. Both the Cleveland Browns (0-5) and Miami Dolphins ( 1-4 ) are making strong cases to have their coaches fired in their first seasons of coaching their respective teams. In the case of the Browns no one expected them to be competitive enough to take down the New England Patriots (4-1) , but today’s performance by the Browns was a clear indication the players on this team are just not good enough , nor do they have the will to win.

    As Ryan Tannehill goes , then too do the Miami Dolphins , a team now on the brink of completely spiraling out of control. Head coach Adam Gase and his coaching staff are no longer at a loss words to explain the continued incompetence of the players. Another game and another lopsided loss , to the point where it has now become too embarrassing to watch the Miami Dolphins at home or on the road .

    NFL week five results

    NFL standings (divisional) & conference standings

    NFL player stats week five

    Cleveland Browns news

    New England Patriots news

    Tophatal …………

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  33. The late results are now in from the week five schedule of the NFL , with only the Monday Night Game left to close out the week’s schedule. That contest will feature two of the more embattled teams within the NFC . as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-3) are the guests of the Carolina Panthers (1-3). For opposing quarterbacks Cam Newton of the Panthers and Jameis Winston their respective seasons have been filled with a great deal of inconsistency.

    NFL news

    Tophatal ……………

    NFL news

    Tophatal ……………

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  34. It seems the damage done in the Carolina’s , might well have spread to the NFL franchise itself the Carolina Panthers (1-4) , as they fell to the equally lackluster Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-3) in an abysmal Monday Night Game. As time expired, it took a field-goal to win the game for the home team in a contest which was televised on a cable network . Granted , the league hierarchy cannot be totally responsible , when the scheduling a contest provides the fans with two equally atrocious teams. Yet somehow. I believe there has to be greater emphasis based on which games the NFL feels should be worthy of such a spectacle . Aging veteran Derek Anderson , inserted as Cam Newton’s backup, had one of those games where not much went right for the quarterback during the contest .

    The Carolina Panthers were once again without with their League MVP and Pro Bowl caliber quarterback Cam Newton , who remains sidelined because of an injury sustained in week three of the season . Without Newton in the lineup , Carolina has remained a shadow of the team which was so dominant in the league last season . Were it not for kicker Roberto Aguayo , this game might well have gone into overtime and provided the Panthers with a much-needed victory. Instead , it was the home team coming through victorious in an unspectacular contest.

    Tophatal ……..

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  35. Perhaps no other player in Boston Red Sox history has best epitomized or represented team success over the past eight seasons than David Ortiz . Having played his last postseason and professional game for the franchise in their crushing ALDS loss to the Cleveland Indians . Ortiz will retire from the game he has served so well . Lauding his teammates of the present as well as the past , this great veteran will leave as one of the Red Sox greats . Where one might place him among the franchise’s top-ten players will be judged by history and Boston’s fans. He remains popular and one the most beloved players in the game. Unfortunately, David Ortiz could not lead this team any further along their postseason path for 2016 , as they fell to former manager Terry Francona and his well-rounded Indians’ team .

    Fan-favorite David Ortiz is seen here saluting the fans at Fenway Park after the ALDS against the Cleveland Indians . The Boston Red Sox were swept 3-0 in the series .

    The Cleveland Indians will now advance to the ALCS , where they will meet the Toronto Blue Jays in a best of seven-game series for the privilege of playing in the World Series .

    MLB news

    Boston Red Soz headline news

    2015 MLB postseason schedule

    Tophatal ……….. 2016/10/12 03:18:26 am

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