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NFL Week 13 Sunday Night Game Preview/Pick- Giants vs. Redskins

giantsvsredskins

NFL Prediction and Pick Giants vs. Redskins

 

New York Giants (4-7) @ Washington Redskins (3-8) 12/01- 8:30PM EST

 

Line: EVEN

Over/Under: 45.5

 

I’m sure when the television schedules were made, this game looked like a marquee matchup as the last two winners of the NFC East did not think they would be in this position so late in the season not fighting for playoff spot but trying to avoid last-place in what as been a disappointing NFC East this year.

 

Last year’s game in prime-time was for an NFC East title, this season’s game at FedEx Field is nothing more then for pride and trying to stay out of the cellar in what has been a truly disappointing season for both teams.

 

Everybody’s got a lot of pride in the NFL regardless of what your record is,” Washington coach Mike Shanahan said. “Everybody wants to win and I’m sure the Giants feel the same way.”

 

The Giants (4-7) had reeled off four wins in a row leading up to last week’s showdown with the Dallas Cowboys at home and we’re in a position to make some noise in the division, but after losing 24-21, their playoff hopes were greatly damaged as they suffered a season sweep at the hands of the Cowboys.

 

I think that’s something that we have to deal with a lot of times in this league,” safety Antrel Rolle said. “The pages have been turned. We’re already looking forward to playing a game and getting the preparation in for this week.”

 

The Washington Redskins (3-8) have been under the microscope all season long with Robert Griffin III coming back to play after having offseason reconstructive surgery on his right knee and without a doubt has not been the same player he was last year as a rookie.

 

Last season in his rookie year before his playoff injury, Griffin rushed for 815 yards and ran for seven touchdowns, but in 2013 has gained only 367 yards and has not reached the end zone to this point.

 

We had a dual threat. Now that threat is not quite there as strong as it was a year ago,” Shanahan said. “But now we go to a different direction. We run play-action, we still run some of the zone-reads.”

 

RG3 has already had a rough sophomore season in the NFL having to answer the critics about the true health of his knee and now seems to be involved in weekly controversies… be it clashing with Shanahan, playing the blame-game for on-field mistakes, his performance on the field or having his father visit him in the locker room following Monday night’s 27-6 blowout loss to the 49ers were he threw for a season-low 118 yards and was sacked for a career-worst six times by the Niners’ defense.

 

A good performance on Sunday night can at least deter the critics for another week, and going against a Giants defense that has produced only 18 sacks, which is the second-lowest in the NFL only to Jacksonville may be a good start to having a good game.

 

Griffin had a 105.9 passer rating last year in a series-split with the Giants… but he was healthy.

 

New York’s Eli Manning is also been the center of criticism this year with his horrific numbers of a 72.5 passer rating, which is his worst since his rookie year. Manning has also thrown 17 picks and the Giants offense as a whole has committed an NFL-high 30 turnovers.

 

With problems all year long with both teams, we can see why the oddsmakers have made it an EVEN game for Sunday night. Will the line move before kickoff? Check the latest spread here through Wonder Punter to find out.

 

With the Giants having a host of injuries going to Sunday’s game.. Jason-Pierre Paul, Trumaine McBride, Brandon Jacobs and Corey Webster…. I have to give a slight edge to the Redskins.

 

One bright spot for the Redskins this season has been Alfred Morris, who ranks third in the league with 970 rushing yards and had success against the Giants last year with 224 rushing yards.

 

PICK: Washington

 

 

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

 

 

 

 

 

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NFL Prediction Preview & Pick- Cincinnati vs. San Diego Week 13 Sunday Game

Chargers-vs.-Bengals

NFL Pick Bengals vs. Chargers

 

Cincinnati Bengals (7-4) @ San Diego Chargers (5-6) 12/01- 4:45PM EST

 

Line: EVEN

Over/Under: 48.5

 

Despite San Diego’s record at 5-6, they are coming off a big win last Sunday at Kansas City and looking to stay in the hunt for a wild-card spot with a win over the AFC North leading Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday afternoon.

 

The Bengals (7-4) are coming off a late-season bye week and begin a five-game stretch as they seek an AFC North title and to make some noise come playoff time.

 

But, in order to do that they must improve upon their dismal road record of 2-4 which is tied for worse with the Dallas Cowboys for teams with a .500 record or better.

 

They have lost their last two road games at Miami and at Baltimore and if they lose Sunday will be in trouble as the Ravens will only be one-game back for the division lead after winning on Thanksgiving night against Pittsburgh.

 

A win would give the Bengals some cushion with a two-game lead with four to play with only one remaining road game against the Steelers.

 

We have five games to really make a run and put our name out there, wide receiver Marvin Jones said. “The bye week was a big help. I’ve never had a late bye week like that. We’re ready to make this last push and go for it all.”

 

For that late push to be successful, the Bengals must improve their offense where they have been held below 270 total yards in three straight games and quarterback Andy Dalton must improve his accuracy where he has thrown eight picks in that same span.

 

Everybody throws interceptions from time to time,” offensive coordinator Jay Gruden said. “If you’re going to play quarterback, you’re going to throw an interception from time to time. You can’t dwell on it, you’ve got to move on and figure out a way to win the game.

 

But obviously eight interceptions in three weeks is too many.”

 

Dalton is tied for third in the NFL with 15 interceptions… but is one of six quarterbacks in the league with over 20 touchdowns passes at 21.

 

Another 93-yard passing performance with a 47.4 percent completion percentage as he did against the Browns two weeks ago will may not get it done again on the road this Sunday. Dalton was at 64.8 percent through his first nine games.

 

The Chargers I feel have been a better football team all year long then their record indicates and with four of their last five games at home can make a move to strengthen their position for a wild-card spot.

 

Trouble is they are only 5-7 at home since the start of the 2012 season…. that must change quick if they wish to be part of any post-season games.

 

Maybe their big road win last week at Kansas City can get give them the boost they need the rest of the way?

 

It’s the kind of win that can save the season,” Rivers said. “That doesn’t meant it saved it, but it certainly can keep it alive.”

 

The offense has been descent all year, but the defense is an AFC-worst 389.5 yards per game allowed and they rank 27th in the NFL yielding 29.0 points per contest in their last four games.

 

So with both football teams having some problems, they oddsmakers have made the line leading up to kickoff EVEN, but may change, so be sure to check the latest spread here through Wonder Punter up until kickoff.

 

Cincinnati has won the last two meetings over the Philip Rivers’ led Chargers, but I think San Diego will do enough on Sunday to win in a close one.

 

PICK: San Diego

 

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

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NFL Prediction Week 13 Sunday Game Preview/Pick- Denver vs. Kansas City

Denver-Broncos-vs-Kansas-City-Chiefs-will-be-full-of-High-Octane-Action-450x304

NFL Free Pick and Prediction Denver vs. Kansas

 

Denver Broncos (9-2) @ Kansas City (9-2) 12/01- 4:25PM EST

 

Line: DEN -5.5

Over/Under: 49.0

 

For the second time in 3 weeks, the Denver Broncos (9-2) and Kansas City Chiefs (9-2) will be meeting again Sunday for the battle in the AFC West lead and both will be trying to bounce-back from disappointing losses.

 

Round 1 went to the Broncos at home 27-17 back on November 17th to give the Broncos the tie-breaker in head-to-head games and since then still find themselves tied but come Sunday, the Chiefs will be trying to avoid losing their third straight after winning nine consecutive games to start the season.

 

I know, look, everybody’s going to ride that roller coaster,” Broncos interim coach Jack Del Rio said. “Last week we’re the greatest, this week not so good. We’ll just keep working at it.”

 

Both teams can clinch a playoff spot this week with a win.. but it’s a complicated scenario.

 

The Broncos suffered a heartbreaking defeat last Sunday in New England by allowing a franchise-record 24-point comeback at the hands of the Patriots losing 34-31.

 

While I still believe the Broncos have what it takes to win it all… I’ve questioned the Chiefs all season long even while they went unbeaten as their defense has had two bad performances in consecutive weeks.

 

First losing at Denver 27-17, then last week giving up 41 points to the Chargers in a last-minute 41-38 defeat at home exposed some holes.

 

Kansas City has now allowed season-highs in points the last two ball games and now with the Denver offense coming into town may not get better.

 

Just like we were doing when we were winning, we need to go back and see what’s up and correct it and just keep going to work,” Chiefs safety Eric Berry said. “It’s not the end of the world. But we do have a sense of urgency this week to get the things corrected that we can see on tape.”

 

The Chiefs have had a dramatic drop off in sacks where now they’ve only had two in the last four games after accounting for 35 in their first seven contests.

 

Lack of quarterback pressure has led to quarterbacks Peyton Manning and Phillip Rivers torching the defense for 715 passing yards in their last two after not allowing more then 300 yards through the air in their previous nine.

 

To add to the challenge of trying to slow down the Bronco offense, the Chiefs may not have Tamba Hali (9 sacks) and Justin Houston (11 sacks) for Sunday’s game.

 

Hali has a sprained ankle but may go and Houston suffered a dislocated right elbow and is questionable.

 

The duo of Hali and Houston account for over half the teams sacks on the year.

 

Losing that caliber of players, we have to step it up, make some something happen,” Chiefs cornerback Brandon Flowers said. “That’s what we get paid to do.”

 

Here is the tale-of-the-tape in numbers with these two teams:

 

Kansas City is still tops in the AFC in scoring defense giving up only 16.3 points per game and best in the NFL with a 29.1 percent allowed on third down.

 

Denver averages an NFL-best 451.5 yards along with 39.0 points per game. 48.3 percent on third-down conversions (first) and red-zone efficiency is first at 78.7.

 

It’s those kind numbers that has the Broncos favored at a (minus) -5.5 point favorite on the road according to the oddsmakers. But, with a big game like this on Sunday, the odds may change, so get the latest up to the minute lines on the game up until kick-off here through Wonder Punter.

 

I don’t expect Manning to have another bad game in consecutive weeks where last he finished with a season-worst 70.4 passer rating on just 19 of 36 completions with a paltry 150 yards passing.

 

I also don’t expect the Broncos to commit another four turnovers as they did against the Patriots.

 

Hated the way that ended, not getting a chance to get our hands on the ball,” Manning said. “We helped them with some short fields. It’s hard to do that to our defense.”

 

Kansas City has a league-low 11 turnovers and the defense has created an AFC-leading 24 takeaways.

 

The injury bug has also plagued the Broncos…

 

Denver’s running back Knowshown Moreno and cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie are questionable but expect to have Champ Bailey (foot) back in action.

 

Like the first game.. too much Denver in the end and predict the Broncos winning as they send the Chiefs to their third-straight defeat.

 

PICK: Denver

 

 

By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter

 

 

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Johny Hendricks’ Striking Coach: Just Give Us Another Date

 


The Nov. sixteen UFC welterweight title combat between champion

Georges St.Pierre

and challenger

JohnyHendricks

ended with a controversial split choice in St.Pierre’s favor. After a few weeks of debate, Hendricks’placing coach Steven Wright simply wants his fighter to get anothercrack on the title.

“When it went to the playing cards, we had been fairly assured as a result of wethought the rounds we won had been pretty clear, however now that it’sremoved, as you may imagine, after all of the Twitter and all themedia information and so on and no matter, I’m identical to, hey, simply give usanother date,” Wright informed the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown” show. “Just get us in thereagain and we’ll show it again. … A couple of days faraway from it, thereis no choice that’s going to be changed. The title’s not comingour way until we get one other shot, so we’re just hoping to getanother shot.”

After the bout St. Pierre stated he wanted to take a break from MMA.It’s not clear how long the champion can be off, however regardless,Wright wants there to be a title on the road the following timeHendricks fights.

“Whether it’s 12 months or whether or not [St. Pierre] by no means fights once more,so long as our subsequent struggle’s for the title, we’re pretty satisfiedthere,” Wright said. “Because of the state of affairs with Team Takedownand how [Hendricks has] labored issues out with … the fellows who ownTeam Takedown, because of the situation that they labored out withthe athletes, Johny’s not able the place he’s wanting atchecks and he’s worried. … I really suppose that due to hissituation with Workforce Takedown, if [the UFC] said, ‘Hey, we will’t getthis done until September of subsequent yr,’ we may wait as a result of wewant the title that unhealthy. Anything else is falling brief. We do notwant an interim title as a result of everyone is aware of that the interimtitle just means you’re not the true titleholder.”

Regardless of St. Pierre’s wish for an prolonged vacation, UFC PresidentDana White has said a rematch will occur. Hendricks’ camp isalready making ready in case it does.

“We’re already working at it, already looking at things we couldhave improved on from final struggle,” Wright said. “We’ve been filmjunkies. I’m sending [Hendricks’ grappling coach Marc Laimon] somestuff. Even final night time we were texting backwards and forwards and we werelooking at stuff and we had been like hey, if we get this opportunityagain, let’s do this this time, let’s do this. We’re hoping thatthe Johny he goes towards is the Johny that’s obtained five rounds underhis belt now. We’ll be even meaner within the subsequent GSP struggle.”

Listen to the full interview (beginning at 44:58).

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Hyun Gyu Lim Replaces Injured Ellenberger, Faces Saffiedine at UFC Fight Night 34

HyunGyu Lim will headline UFC Struggle Evening 34 opposite Tarec Saffiedine.| Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com

 

The

UFC Fight Night time 34

principal occasion has undergone a major change, as

HyunGyu Lim

will substitute an injured

JakeEllenberger

in the Jan. 4 headliner.

Sherdog.com confirmed the switch with a UFC official on Friday morning. Brazilian outlet Combate firstreported Ellenberger’s harm, and MMAJunkie.com adopted thereport with news of the Lim-Saffiedine pairing.

UFC Fight Night 34 takes place on the Marina Bay Sands in Singaporeand may even see longtime Japanese standout TatsuyaKawajiri sq. off with Hacran Dias.Lim was initially booked to face KiichiKunimoto on the event, but Kunimoto will now as a substitute face LuisJorge Dutra Jr.

Lim has been on a roll of late, going undefeated in his last sevenoutings. The former Pacific Xtreme Combat welterweight titlist madehis UFC debut this previous March, knocking out MarceloGuimaraes before doing the identical factor to German prospectPascalKrauss on Aug. 31 at UFC 164.

Saffiedine captured the Strikeforce welterweight belt in his mostrecent outing, extending his profitable streak to four fights bythoroughly outpointing NateMarquardt at Strikeforce’s final show this previous January.“Sponge” was then anticipated to make his Octagon debut on July 27 atUFC on Fox 8, but he was forced to withdraw from that booking dueto injury.

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UFC Fight Night 36 Gets Francisco Trinaldo-Jesse Ronson Lightweight Pairing

”Massaranduba” returns to the Octagon on Feb. 15. | GleidsonVenga/Sherdog.com

 

A lightweight showdown between

FranciscoTrinaldo

and

JesseRonson

has been added to the developing

UFC Battle Evening 36

invoice.

UFC officials not too long ago introduced the reserving, which takes placeat Enviornment Jaragua in Jaragua do Sul, Brazil. The Feb. 15 present isheadlined by a middleweight conflict between former UFC lightheavyweight king LyotoMachida and onetime Strikeforce ruler GegardMousasi and is predicted to air dwell on Fox Sports 1.

Trinaldo, 35, began his UFC profession final yr after winning theJungle Fight light-weight title and competing as a middleweight on“The Final Fighter: Brazil.” The Brazilian has gone 3-2 in hisOctagon stint to date however was submitted in his final outing,tapping to a PiotrHallmann kimura at September’s UFC Combat Evening 28.

Ronson, meanwhile, noticed an eight-fight winning streak snapped in hisSept. 21 Octagon foray, when he dropped a cut up decision toMichel Richard Cunha dos Prazeres at UFC one hundred sixty five. The 27-yr-oldCanadian owns 10 of his 13 victories by both knockout orsubmission and has gone the gap simply 4 times in as manyyears as a professional.

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Michal Materla-Jay Silva Middleweight Title Rubber Match Tops KSW 26 in Warsaw

Michal Materla will sq. off with Jay Silva for a third timeat KSW 26. | Piotr Pedziszewski /Sherdog.com

 

A middleweight title rematch between

MichalMaterla

and

Jay Silva

willheadline KSW 26.

Konfrontacja Sztuk Walki officers introduced the pairing onFriday, revealing that KSW 26 will happen March 22 from TorwarHall in Warsaw, Poland. The event will stream reside on www.kswtv.comand may also function KSW heavyweight champion KarolBedorf, as well as an appearance from MarcinRozalski.

Materla and Silva originally battled over the vacant middleweighttitle final year at KSW 19, with Materla emerging with a majoritydecision victory and the belt. The boys then rematched this pastSeptember in a non-title affair, which ended when Silva knocked outthe champion at KSW 24.

Silva, 32, halted a 3-fight skid with his recent victory overthe Polish champion. The 32-yr-previous began his professional career in 2008and went on to compete for the UFC and Bellator earlier than morerecently fighting in KSW and the Alberta-primarily based Most FightingChampionship.

After Materla captured the inaugural KSW middleweight title, hewent on to defend it twice successfully before falling to Silva intheir rematch, besting RodneyWallace and then KendallGrove. The 29-12 months-old owns 12 of his 19 wins by submission andhas been stopped just twice in 23 pro bouts.

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Manager: Rare Heart Condition May Be Responsible for Shane Del Rosario Hospitalization

Arare heart condition could have caused Shane del Rosario’shospitalization. | Jeff Sherwood/Sherdog.com

Shane delRosario

stays on life support on the Hoag Memorial HospitalPresbyterian in Newport Beach, Calif.

The heavyweight’s manager, Jason Home,released an update on del Rosario’s condition by way of text message toSherdog.com on Friday, revealing that the fighter’s suddenhospitalization may be the results of a rare coronary heart condition.

“Shane continues to cling to life at Hoag hospital in NewportBeach, Calif.,” House wrote. “After arriving at the emergency roomin full cardiac arrest on Tuesday morning he was resuscitated tostable rhythm and blood strain, but has not regainedconsciousness. Doctors consider he might endure from a uncommon conditioncalled Long QT Syndrome, which is a genetic anomaly that may causea sudden and life-threatening coronary heart rhythm abnormality, and mayresult in sudden death. Tragically, it strikes wholesome younger peopleand often is the first and solely presentation of a heartproblem.”

Training associate Erik Appletold Sherdog on Thursday that del Rosario was found at home by hisroommate, UFC flyweight Ian McCall,who called 911 and administered CPR to the heavyweight prior to delRosario being taken to the hospital.

ESPN.com’s Josh Gross later reported that del Rosario was movedonto life support and “had no brain exercise remaining” afterundergoing a procedure on Wednesday that doctors had hoped wouldjump-start body and mind operate.

In keeping with the ESPN report, medical doctors had been expected to make adecision about whether to continue life support this morning, butApple advised Sherdog that the fighter’s dad and mom determined that nodecision could be made in the present day.

“They’re very thankful for all the help and love that hascome from everywhere in the world for his or her son,” Apple wrote. “At thispoint we have to do our greatest to respect their privacy and continueto pray for his or her son.”

Sherdog’s Struggle Doctor and FightMedicine.net (@FightMedicine) founderJon Gelber has more on Long QT Syndrome: Lengthy QT Syndrome is anabnormality in the heart’s conduction pathway and impacts about onein 2,000 individuals. It will possibly lead to fast heartbeats tha can set off asudden fainting spell, seizure or sudden loss of life.

Traditionally, athletes with Lengthy QT Syndrome were advised notparticipate in sports activities. A research out of Mayo Clinic, nevertheless, arguedthat athletes who chose to continue playing sports activities could do sosafely so long as their household and coaches have been educated and theyhad the technique of treating emergencies such as having their owndefibrillator. One instance of an athlete excelling regardless of thiscondition is Dana Vollmer, an Olympic Gold Medalist Swimmer.

The tragedy, nevertheless, is that when a heart situation like this doesmanifest itself, it could lead to cardiovascular collapse. Incardiovascular collapse, the guts and circulatory system fail toget enough blood and oxygen to key organs of the body, includingthe mind.

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Source: NFL reviews Tomlin move for discipline

Tomlin Facing Discipline?

 

Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin should have been penalized for stepping on the field Thursday night and the play will be reviewed for discipline over the next week, an NFL official confirmed to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

In addition, the official running along with the play – who allowed Tomlin to come between him and the Baltimore Ravens’ Jacoby Jones – could be downgraded, according to the source.

After the Steelers scored to close to 13-7 in the third quarter, Jones broke free down the sideline on the ensuing kickoff but slowed up with Tomlin on the white stripe near the field of play – with his foot on the field at one point as Jones neared his location. Tomlin, who had his back to the play, was not penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Tomlin said he didn’t think he interfered with Jones.

“I always watch the returns on the JumboTron. It provides better perspective for me,” Tomlin said. “I lost my placement as he broke free and saw at the last second how close I was to the field of play.”

Tomlin was asked if he was aware of the rule that players and coaches have to stand behind the white line that separates the sidelines from the playing field.

“Tell me something I don’t know. I do it quite often, like everybody else in the National Football League. I was wrong, I accept responsibility for it,” he told reporters.

It was nine months ago at the Super Bowl that Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco took flak for suggesting to teammates that they should run out on the field to tackle Ted Ginn Jr. on the final play.

“That’s exactly what he just did,” Flacco said. “He was looking at the big screen the whole entire time, he knew where he was, he knew where Jacoby was. He pulled my move.”

 

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Scarlet Letter: Ohio urged to spurn letter ‘M’

Governor Urges Boycott Of Letter ‘M’

 

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Already crossed out on signs around Ohio State’s campus, citizens around the rest of the state are being asked to follow suit and boycott a certain letter of the alphabet in honor of the intense rivalry with Michigan.

Ohio governor John Kasich posted a resolution on his Twitter account on Friday that recognizes “Scarlet Letter Saturday” and encourages people to avoid using the letter ‘M’ as the No. 3 Buckeyes travel to take on the Wolverines at Michigan Stadium.

Ohio State Board

Austin Ward/ESPNOhio State took their rivalry with Michigan to another level, boycotting use of the letter ‘M’ ahead of Saturday’s game.

Referencing other famous feuds, the fact that wolverines were added to the threatened species list and mentioning the only war between two states while crossing out every ‘M’ in the document, Kasich added yet another element to a series that already captures the attention of fans of both storied programs all year round.

“We do hereby recognize Saturday, November 30, 2013 as ‘Scarlet Letter Saturday’ throughout Ohio,” the resolution said. “[We] encourage all Ohioans to avoid using the letter ‘M’ when possible.”

The practice facility at Ohio State was already in compliance with the resolution earlier in the week, with scarlet tape crossing out all the outlawed letters as coach Urban Meyer’s team prepared for its regular-season finale.

Meyer had also covered up every other game on the schedule with white paper in the team meeting room, driving home the importance of beating “That Team Up North” above all else – even a Big Ten championship game appearance next week or a potential spot in the BCS.

“It is different,” Meyer said. “It’s not just another game. It’s not, and our players know that. Does that mean we put less value on Indiana or less value on the following week coming up? I didn’t say that. But there is an extra pep in the step.

“Do we make a big deal out of this game? Absolutely… That’s the way I was brought up. We kind of go over the top here, and we always have.”

That approach goes all the way up to the governor’s office.

 

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Lilly, 37, retires, ending winter-ball attempt

Ted Lilly Retires

NEXT VIDEO video

OAKLAND, Calif. – Ted Lilly would have loved to keep pitching – if his body would allow him to start every fifth day, and if he could stay off the disabled list.

Instead, the 37-year-old left-hander is retiring after 15 seasons because of further problems with his shoulder and back.

He went to winter ball in Venezuela this month with the hope his body would cooperate and he could find a major league job. But Lilly didn’t feel right, and he made just one three-inning appearance during a 20-day stint in Valencia. He would have pitched again except he got food poisoning.

“It came to a point that, unfortunately, the reality set in where I was in terms of health and effectiveness,” Lilly said by phone Friday. “Those combinations are what forced me to retire. If I felt I could still be productive and healthy, I would be playing, for sure. As of today, I don’t think it’s reasonable. I didn’t believe I would be able to go out there and be productive and effective for a major league team and stay healthy to make 30 starts.”

He returned home to California on Wednesday night, and looks forward to spending time with his wife and two young children.

A two-time All-Star, Lilly was 130-113 with a 4.14 ERA in parts of 15 major league seasons. He pitched for Montreal, Oakland, Toronto, the New York Yankees, Chicago Cubs and Dodgers.

He has struggled with the idea of retirement for months, even though his shoulder didn’t recover well. Designated for assignment by the Dodgers – the team that selected him in the 23rd round of the 1996 amateur draft – on July 25, Lily first tried rest.

Late in the season, he saw a spine specialist in Los Angeles and underwent surgery to cauterize the nerve endings in the right side of his neck. He was limited to 13 starts the past two seasons for Los Angeles because of injury problems, going 0-2 with a 5.09 ERA in five 2013 starts.

“As I sit here right now I’m OK but it’s been difficult for weeks because I’ve had to deal with those thoughts and avoid those thoughts for a long time, and continue to talk myself into it that I could find a way to do it,” he said.

“I really do not want to spend more time on the disabled list. I’ve spent so much time on that dreaded list. It really came down to a matter of being effective. If I believed could produce, I would still pitch. So, it was a decision that was forced on me at where I was physically in my career.”

He expects to do coach down the line, probably at the youth baseball level initially.

Lilly is left to cherish the relationships and friendships he made with both teammates and opponents.

“I was so lucky, the game of baseball really changed my life,” he said. “I know a lot of ex-players say that or people who are playing the game, and it’s true. Baseball has been my life for so many years in some facet or the other I hope to continue to stay close to the game. It’s a game that I love.”

Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press

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Steelers’ Gay fined for hit on QB Campbell

Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback William Gay was fined $15,750 by the NFL for his hit on Cleveland Browns quarterback Jason Campbell’s face mask last Sunday.

William Gay

Although the Steelers’ William Gay wasn’t penalized for this hit on the Browns’ Jason Campbell last Sunday, he was fined $15,750 on Friday by the NFL.

Campbell received a concussion on the play, and has not practiced since. He will not play this Sunday when the Browns play Jacksonville.

Gay was not penalized for the hit.

“I thought he got hit in the face mask right from the beginning and then obviously you see the replay and it’s really easy to see from all the angles except the one that the referee had – he’s standing behind,” Browns offensive coordinator Norv Turner said.

“You’d just like someone to come in and help him make that call. The way it’s being emphasized by the league, it should never be missed. And the ones that they’ve made mistakes on is where they’ve gone too far. So this one obviously they didn’t go far enough.”

The NFL said that Gay was fined for “unnecessarily delivered a forcible blow to his opponent head and neck area.”

Gay’s base salary is $1 million, or $58,823 per week. So he lost about one-fourth of his weekly pay – before taxes.

In other fines around the league Friday:

• Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh was fined $7,875 for a throat-slashing gesture against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last Sunday.

• Chicago Bears guard Kyle Long and fullback Tony Fiammetta were each fined $7,875 for their involvement in a scuffle with St. Louis Rams players. The Rams’ Chris Long wasn’t fined for leaving the bench to break up the fight involving his brother.

• New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan was fined $10,000 for a roughing the passer penalty he received for hitting the Atlanta Falcons’ Matt Ryan.

• New York Jets defensive tackle Kenrick Ellis was fined $7,875 for a face mask penalty against the Baltimore Ravens.

• Houston Texans defensive end Antonio Smith was fined $15,750 for roughing Jacksonville Jaguars’ Chad Henne.

 

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Bo Pelini: ‘If they want to fire me, go ahead’

Bo Pelini Comments On Job Status

 

LINCOLN, Neb. – Bo Pelini says he hasn’t been told if he’ll return for a seventh season as Nebraska’s head coach and that he isn’t spending any time worrying about it.

“If they want to fire me, go ahead,” Pelini told reporters after the Cornhuskers’ 38-17 loss to Iowa on Friday to finish the regular season 8-4. “I believe in what I’ve done. I don’t apologize to you. I don’t apologize to anybody, myself or this staff. My record, our record since I’ve been here, speaks for itself. And this program is heading in a good direction.

“You choose not to think so, that’s your prerogative. All I know is myself, this staff, the people who have been associated with this program since I’ve been here can look themselves in the mirror and feel good about what they’ve done.”

Though Pelini is 57-24 at Nebraska, his performance has been heavily scrutinized in the wake of bad losses to UCLA and Minnesota.

The question is whether first-year athletic director Shawn Eichorst believes Pelini is moving the program in the right direction. Pelini is under contract through 2017 and makes almost $3 million per year.

The Huskers haven’t won a conference championship since 1999, and they were eliminated from the Big Ten Legends Division race two weeks ago.

In addition to a run of blowout losses dating to 2011, Pelini came under fire in September after an audio of his profane tirade against Nebraska fans went public.

Eichorst, who has a policy of not commenting on a coach while his or her team is in season, has given no hint about how he’s leaning.

Pelini’s volatile sideline antics, which have been kept under wraps most of the season, were back in full force Friday. He was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct in the third quarter after he protested a pass-interference call on linebacker Zaire Anderson.

Pelini said the official flagged him because he got too close to him, but made it clear – with the help of an expletive – he thought it was a bad call.

“I’ve never seen anything like that before,” Pelini said. “I’ve done a lot worse than that, and I saw (Iowa coach) Kirk Ferentz over on the other side acting a lot worse than I act. I didn’t see a flag come out on him. The bottom line is they knew they blew the call. They blew it. They blew that call over there on that third down. And everybody in the stadium knew it. They didn’t man up enough to pick that flag up.”

The Huskers (5-3 Big Ten) won their fewest regular-season games since 2008, Pelini’s first year, and lost three home games for the first time since 2007 under Bill Callahan.

Pelini’s team battled through injuries to six offensive linemen, and fourth-year starting quarterback Taylor Martinez was limited to four games because of a mysterious foot injury. The Huskers started third-stringer Ron Kellogg III against Iowa because of an ankle injury to Tommy Armstrong Jr. The Huskers also struggled with turnovers and shoddy special-teams play.

Pelini declined to answer directly when asked if he had made a case to keep his job.

“You guys have chose to make a story of it all year,” he said. “It’s impacted our football team. It’s hurt our football team.”

Junior receiver Kenny Bell said he and his teammates support Pelini’s return.

“I would play for Bo Pelini against Satan himself and the demons of the world,” he said. “I love coach Pelini.”

Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press

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Kidd: ‘Probably shouldn’t have’ spilled drink

HOUSTON – Jason Kidd said he was just “trying to win” when he intentionally spilled a drink on the court, a stunt that cost him $50,000.

The Brooklyn Nets coach was fined Thursday, with the NBA saying he intentionally spilled his drink as a stall tactic.

He tried to avoid talking about it Friday, but when pressed, he relented.

” Paul [Pierce] got a great look, but the league fined me for something that I probably shouldn’t have done,” he said. “We’ll move on.”

Kidd bumped into Brooklyn reserve Tyshawn Taylor with 8.3 seconds left Wednesday against the Los Angeles Lakers, causing his drink to spill. A video of the play showed Kidd seeming to ask Taylor to “hit me” as the guard walked toward the bench.

The Nets had time to draw up a play while the floor was being cleaned after the spill but still lost 99-94.

Kidd was asked whether he regretted the unusual move and why he decided to go with it.

“It’s about trying to win and those guys in that locker room, and I tried to put those guys in a position to get a basket, a good look and we did,” he said.

He also was questioned on where he came up with the ploy.

[+] EnlargeJason KiddAP Photo/John MinchilloNets coach Jason Kidd said he “probably shouldn’t have” spilled a drink on the court in the final seconds of Wednesday’s game against the Lakers.

“Um, just listening to other coaches or other owners talk about coaches and what they’ve done,” he said.

Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni got a little hot under the collar when asked Friday about the incident.

“I knew he was going to get caught,” D’Antoni said. “You can’t do that. That’s crazy. He can’t do that. It’s cute for a lot of people, but you can’t do that.”

D’Antoni said he did not notice how the spill happened, but his players picked up on it immediately. Both Steve Blake and Xavier Henry hovered around the Nets’ impromptu huddle to spy on the play being drawn up.

“I’m glad they did,” D’Antoni said of Blake and Henry’s bit of gamesmanship in response to Kidd’s move. “They should have.”

D’Antoni said “you can’t do that” or “he can’t do that” no less than seven times in the two minutes he discussed Kidd’s decision, adding that it was “nuts” to try such a stunt.

“That’s against the rules,” D’Antoni said. “I don’t think that’s very savvy or cool. I love Jason to death, he’s going to be a great coach, but no, you don’t do that.”

D’Antoni, the NBA’s coach of the year in 2004-05 with the Phoenix Suns, admitted there are tricks a coach can use to try to affect the outcome of a game outside of simply drawing up plays, making substitutions, working the referees and calling timeouts, but he said Kidd crossed the boundary of fair game.

“You can catch somebody’s eye on the baseline on foul shots and stuff, as long as you stay off the court and in the rules,” D’Antoni said. “You can do those things, but you shouldn’t get on the court. You shouldn’t run into people on the court. You shouldn’t drop things on the court, especially when they’re not warranted [from an accident]. You can’t do that.”

Houston Rockets coach Kevin McHale offered a one word answer when he was asked for his opinion on the move before Friday night’s game against the Nets.

“Expensive,” he said with a smile.

When Kidd was told of the comment, he, too, smiled.

“Yes, it was,” he said and shook his head.

Kidd, who is in his first year as a coach, was suspended for the first two games of the season after pleading guilty in a drunken driving case.

The Nets are off to a 4-11 start entering Friday’s game.

ESPNLosAngeles.com’s Dave McMenamin and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Bucks at Bobcats final score: Milwaukee drops 11th straight in 92-76 loss in Charlotte

Nov 29, 2013; Charlotte, NC, USA; Charlotte Bobcats middle Al Jefferson (25) shoots the ball over Milwaukee Bucks energy ahead Ekpe Udoh (5) in the course of the second half at Time Warner Cable Enviornment. Bobcats defeated the Bucks 92-seventy six. Obligatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA IN THE PRESENT DAY Sports

Coming into the 2013-2014 season, there was a rumored directive from the proprietor’s office in Milwaukee that the Bucks would not be tanking, and would relatively compete for a decrease-tier playoff spot. Nonetheless, it appears that the Bucks organization didn’t account for the truth that their current roster could be quite this dysfunctional.

The Bucks misplaced their eleventh consecutive choice by the hands of the Charlotte Bobcats on Friday evening, and so they did it in embarrassing trend by the score of 92-76. Milwaukee’s offense fully deserted them in the loss, as they shot just 33.three% as a crew and didn’t tally more than 21 points in any of the four quarters.

Brandon Knight, the workforce’s place to begin guard, was the lone statistical vibrant spot for Milwaukee, scoring 17 points on 7-of-11 capturing in half-hour, however that didn’t come close to making up for some of the carnage. OJ Mayo (2-11 FG), Khris Middleton (three-9 FG), John Henson (three-9 FG), Luke Ridnour (1-6 FG), and Gary Neal (4-11 FG) all failed to crack even forty% taking pictures on a person foundation during the game, and the truth that Milwaukee got destroyed on the glass (54 to 38) solely made the harm larger.

In equity to the Bucks, Charlotte played fairly well in this spot, especially on the defensive end. The rebounding differential was doubtless the one biggest factor, however huge man Al Jefferson had his best game of the season (23 points, 11 rebounds) and Charlotte continuously pressured less than optimal shots from the Bucks.

Overall, Milwaukee’s shedding streak is probably a good factor for the crew. It was largely preposterous for Milwaukee to attempt to compete for the 8th spot this season as an alternative of aiming for draft position, and even if the workforce elects to “compete” moving ahead, they’re in all probability in a big enough hole at this level where it won’t matter.

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Serge Ibaka throws it down over Andrew Bogut

Nov 29, 2013; Oklahoma City, OKAY, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder energy forward Serge Ibaka (9) dunks the ball towards Golden State Warriors middle Andrew Bogut (12) at Chesapeake Power Arena. Obligatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA RIGHT THIS MOMENT Sports activities

Friday night time brought us a superb match up between two contenders in the Thunder and Warriors. It undoubtedly lived up to the hype, as there have been highlights, confrontations, and game that went down the wire.

Within the video above, Russell Westbrook will get the ball to Kevin Durant, who makes a nice pass to Serge Ibaka. Ibaka gets the ball in nice place and rises to the rim. Assembly him there was Andrew Bogut, who is a superb shot blocker. It didn’t work out nicely for Bogut, as he got posterized by Ibaka.

The Thunder pulled out a win on a sport winner by Russell Westbrook, and the final was 113-112. This was simply two of Ibaka’s 18 points, and he also added 13 rebounds. The Warriors couldn’t get it done regardless of 32 points from Stephen Curry. Harrison Barnes also added 26 in replacement of Andre Iguodala, however they couldn’t beat Durant and Westbrook, who finished with 25 and 34 points respectively.

What a filthy dunk from Ibaka, and a very good win for the Thunder.

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Russell Westbrook hits the game winner (GIF)

Nov 29, 2013; Oklahoma Metropolis, OK, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook (0) and Thunder small forward Kevin Durant (35) have fun an overtime victory over the Golden State Warriors at Chesapeake Power Enviornment. The Thunder defeated the Warriors 113-112 Obligatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA RIGHT NOW Sports

The Thunder were down 112-one hundred ten with a number of seconds to go, they usually missed a shot to win the sport. One way or the other, Russell Westbrook came up with the ball, and he made magic happen:

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Im1o8n0yZ7M/UplivKw5ErI/AAAAAAAA8nQ/jUglkir0gLE/s1600/000.gif

What an awesome play by Westbrook, and this is definitely one thing the Thunder or the Warriors received’t forget anytime soon.

That was such a tough angle, but someway Westrbrook will get squared up, and knocks it down. For some cause, Harrison Barnes didn’t drive him farther in the corner, and allowed him to get free. I can wager he’s kicking himself for that one.

After an inefficient begin to the season, Westbrook had his finest game with 34 factors and seven assists, and he had the best shot of the night time.

The Thunder are actually 11-three on the season, and so they look as formidable as anyone in the league. The Warriors can hang their hat on the truth that they’d a chance to win this sport with out Andre Iguodala, and they are nonetheless an excellent workforce.

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Villanova uses late 3-pointer to stun 2nd-ranked Kansas, 63-59

Nov 29, 2013; Paradise Island, BAHAMAS; Villanova Wildcats gamers react during the recreation against the Kansas Jayhawks at the 2013 Battle 4 Atlantis within the Imperial Enviornment on the Atlantis Resort. Obligatory Credit score: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

This Tweet says it all.

The shear pleasure of an early-season upset in faculty hoops is always a pleasure, however when it comes from an unranked crew topping the #2 group in the country, that makes it all of the more special. Villanova’s Ryan Arcidiacono shot just 1 for six on the night time, however his singular basket of the night got here on a 3-pointer with simply 10 seconds remaining that would give the Wildcats the victory. The massive shot pushed ‘Nova to a 2-point lead, and when a 3-pointer from Kansas guard Frank Mason went begging, that was that.

In fairness to Kansas, they were “solely” an eight.5-point favourite in this impartial site match-up, but it surely nonetheless has to sting to drop a game in this manner. All-World freshman Andrew Wiggins managed to tally just 10 factors and 3 rebounds within the game, because the Jayhawks have been held to 38.9% capturing from the sphere and a pair of of eleven from the past the three-point arc.

This wasn’t an aesthetically pleasing game (by any stretch), but the final score is all that issues in case you are a Villanova supporter. On the Kansas aspect, this may merely be chalked up to an “off” night time, and the extremely talented Jayhawks will surely bounce back in short order.

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Nets at Rockets final score: Houston runs past Brooklyn, 114-95

Nov 29, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets taking pictures guard Francisco Garcia (32) blocks a shot by Brooklyn Nets point guard Tyshawn Taylor (10) in the course of the fourth quarter at Toyota Middle. The Rockets received 114-ninety five. Necessary Credit score: Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports activities

The 2013-2014 season has been a struggle for the Brooklyn Nets, and Friday night wasn’t any completely different. Brooklyn fell by the hands of the Houston Rockets by a 114-95 margin, and the way in which wherein they lost was extremely troubling.

Houston’s offense soared from the opening tip, and the 114 points (impressive as they were) represented just the tip of the iceberg. The Rockets absolutely shot the lights out in this one, posted a 52.7% clip from the sphere and a staggering fifty nine.four% (19 for 32) mark from past the 3-point arc. For good measure, the Rockets assisted on 31 of their 39 baskets against the defense-less resistance of the Nets, they usually had been even in a position to get to the free throw line for a powerful 17-of-20 exhibiting.

Maybe the most damning of statistics was the fact that Houston absolutely called the dogs off in this one. No member of the Rockets performed more than 28 minutes, and solely a 33-22 “win” by the Nets in the 4th quarter kept this from being an absolute disaster on the scoreboard.

Should you’re looking for a “vivid” spot for the Nets, it has to be the play of the bench. As a gaggle, they mixed for seventy two of the 95 points, and that’s usually an outstanding sign for the success of a team. Nonetheless, the starters have been used so sparingly (and were so ineffective) that the bench was helpless to beat what was a big deficit from the early going.

Consequently, the Nets now sit at four-12 on the younger season, while Houston is flying excessive at 12-5. It’s straightforward to overreact to a one night time sample measurement within the NBA, but it will be troublesome for two NBA teams to look farther apart while occupying the same floor.

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Texas Longhorns linebacker Steve Edmond will miss rest of 2013 season with lacerated liver

Nov 2, 2013; Austin, TX, USA; Kansas Jayhawks halfback James Sims (29) is tackled by Texas Longhorns linebacker Steve Edmond (33) throughout the first quarter at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. Obligatory Credit score: Brendan Maloney-USA TODAY Sports activities

On the heels of a considerably uncommon (at the very least in latest days) positive performance in a rivalry game, the Texas Longhorns launched some detrimental news in relation to a starting member of their protection.

LB Steve Edmond sustained a lacerated liver vs TT & is ruled out for normal season. Evaluation will proceed & no timetable set for return.

— MBTexasFootball (@MBTexasFootball) November 29, 2013

Starting linebacker Steve Edmond exited Thursday’s 41-16 win over Texas Tech after a second quarter collision with WR Eric Ward, and he wouldn’t return as a result of the remnants. Clearly, nobody could have expected a lacerated liver, and with the clear severity of that injury, the program has rapidly announced that he’ll miss the remainder of the 12 months.

Edmond is presently the main tackler for the Longhorns with 71 on the season, and his loss can be immediately felt on the sector as Texas prepares for his or her season-ending showdown against Baylor that would give them a share of the Huge 12 championship. Nevertheless, the larger story here is the continued well being of the younger man, and a lacerated liver isn’t wherever near a “standard” soccer damage.

Hopefully, Edmond will be capable of return to full health in brief order, and ideally, he’ll have the ability to suit up for Texas subsequent season as a senior.

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