Miami Hurricanes’ Javi Salas throws perfect game


Miami's Javi Salas made some history on Tuesday night. (
Miami's Javi Salas made some historical past on Tuesday evening. (


College of Miami proper-hander Javi Salas twirled a perfect recreation towards Villanova at residence on Tuesday night time. It was the second excellent recreation at school historical past.

Because the AP notes, Salas, a senior for the 16th-ranked Hurricanes, struck out six, recorded 10 floor-outs and ran up just four three-ball counts all night time en path to a 17-0 win. With two outs in the eighth, Salas nearly misplaced his perfecto, however left fielder Sebastian Diaz preserved it with a diving snare.

Here is how "The U" broke the news on Twitter..

Salas, a native of Coral Gables, where the College is located, was the Twins' 38th-spherical choice in the June 2013 draft.

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Rory nearly perfect at Honda


Rory McIlroy was on point on Thursday in Florida. (Getty Imaegs)
Rory McIlroy was on level on Thursday in Florida. (Getty Images)


More Golf: Leaderboard | Rankings | Schedule | Tools | FedEx Cup | Masters 2014

I am guessing the dentist will not be on call this time around.

After withdrawing from last 12 months's Honda Classic with a toothache and 37 photographs via eight holes, Rory McIlroy wanted just 26 more shots to get via a full spherical of 18 in this 12 months's first spherical.

McIlroy torched the sector with a first-round sixty three that included zero bogeys and a card stuffed with birdies. Here is a glance:

That back nine that features the famed (and intensely tough Bear Entice) is just sick.

This is the middle birdie of his three-gap birdie streak to kick-begin the back 9:

To me, though, McIlroy's most impressive hole of the day got here on the par-four ninth.

He hit his tee shot into the precise tough, got here up short of the green on his second and hit a nice chip to 11 feet. He buried that putt for par which doesn't appear to be a giant deal on his scorecard nevertheless it's the form of par he simply wasn't saving last yr.

In keeping with PGA Tour media the 63 is McIlroy's lowest spherical on the PGA Tour since 2010.

The Ulsterman is not any stranger to this track, although. He received this match in 2012 (he shot a 66 in the first spherical that yr) and as Will Grey identified, he's attempting for the uncommon win-WD-win three-12 months finish.

Speaking of that WD, it is becoming that on the very round and within the very place where McIlroy's lowest level of 2013 passed off, his finest moment since then also transpired.

So why the elite round from the six-time winner on the PGA Tour?

"It's a good ball-striker's course," stated McIlroy after his round.

And on Thursday (as he is at all times been) McIlroy was an ideal ball-striker. He hit 78 percent of greens in regulation and 71 percent of fairways.

Surgical precision from the man who ditched the dentist's chair for a scalpel of his own.

For extra golf news, rumors and evaluation, observe @EyeOnGolf and @KylePorterCBS on Twitter or Google+ and like us on Facebook.

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Peyton Manning in the Cold Weather: The Perfect Storm of Factors

peyton manning denver broncos

Peyton Manning can not play in the cold, proper? When Denver misplaced at New England, this was the key talking point. It'll no doubt be one as we method Sunday’s game. I’m here to inform you that it’s largely ridiculous. Do I know whether Peyton Manning lacks some private fortitude that causes him to play worse in chilly climate? No, not for sure, however I am extremely skeptical. It looks like there are a confluence of events that lead individuals to conclude that he performs worse in the chilly.

First, let’s get this out of the way in which– sure, his numbers have been worse in games that had been played within the chilly. It’s whether those are particularly significant now that is the concern, and whether it is a matter on this game. Peyton Manning’s chilly climate information comes on the confluence of a number of elements.

First, many of the games got here when he performed for a dome staff, all on the road. We cannot understate this factor. It is not precisely controversial to say that dome groups have struggled in chilly weather conditions, and that is a matter that goes manner past Peyton Manning. Almost five years in the past, when Chase Stuart looked at venue type and time of 12 months, to assess the effect on passing numbers, enjoying in a dome resulted in a +0.four adjustment in yards per attempt.

Enjoying in a chilly weather city in December to the tip of the playoffs, on the other hand, resulted in a -zero.6 adjustment in yards per try. EVERYBODY tends to play worse in chilly weather, actually because it's associated with wind conditions that affect passing as well.

Thus, to say that Peyton Manning played worse within the cold is not surprising. [INSERT NAME OF QB WHO PERFORMED IN A DOME OR WARM CLIMATE] played worse when enjoying in the cold, virtually with out fail.

Peyton Manning’s numbers when he played your complete recreation, when the temperature was under 40, while playing in Indianapolis (in response to pro football reference): 16 video games, 364 of 594, 4154 yards, 21 td, 24 int, 20.25 factors per sport.

After all, these all came with teammates that were also used to playing in domes: kickers who kicked in domes, lineman used to blocking in warmer circumstances, receivers used to catching in them. Manning’s outcomes can't be divorced from those information.

Quarterbacks are going to carry out higher in very best circumstances. Sometimes, ideally suited means enjoying at dwelling, in situations to which you might be completely acclimated. It could mean sunny and 70 degrees. It might imply no wind. For a dome quarterback, going from the dome situations to January outside within the chilly (often in opposition to a superb defense) is just not very best.

During the last two seasons, of course, Peyton Manning has performed outside in Denver. There is little to compare this with traditionally. Of the all-time main passers, only Vinny Testaverde moved from an heat climate or dome crew to chilly outdoor conditions within the second half of his profession for any substantial time frame. Dave Krieg played on season in Kansas City as a starter, and in addition in Chicago, after being in a dome in Seattle. I suppose you would level to a very transient stint for Warner in New York (though he was benched for Eli Manning halfway by the season) or Mark Brunell re-emerging in Washington. Total, though, examples of how veteran warm weather quarterbacks became acclimated to taking part in in an outside cold climate metropolis will not be helpful.

In Manning’s case, although, the proof that this can be a persevering with problem now that he performs out of doors recurrently, and plays with teammates who achieve this, is skinny. Manning’s numbers within the five video games the place the temperature has been less than 40 degrees, while taking part in in Denver: 136 of 208, 1430 yards, 14 td, 4 int, 35 factors per sport.

Manning has talked about getting acclimated this week and practising outside. Good transfer. He faces a tricky problem in going towards an elite protection, and so it would be a shock if he torched them. The climate will doubtless hold down each passing video games some, although that may extra rely upon the wind experiences than the temperature. Nevertheless, I'm very skeptical that Manning is missing some “taking part in in the cold” gene that has been bestowed upon others.

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Warren Buffet To Award $1 Billion For Perfect ‘March Madness’ Bracket

Discuss excessive-stakes playing. There were studies this week of a $1 billion March Insanity freeroll. So as to win, you’ll just need to fill out a perfect bracket. Obviously the odds are terrible. It’s reportedly 1 in 9.2 quintillion.

Based on a press launch, Dan Gilbert’s Quicken Loans has partnered with Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway to dangle an incredible prize for basketball followers — well for anyone, really. The $1 billion prize can be paid in forty annual installments of $25 million. Alternatively, the winner might elect to obtain an immediate $500 million lump sum cost. If there was one way or the other a couple of winner, the prize would be shared.

Along with the potential grand prize, Quicken Loans will award $a hundred,000 every to the competition’s 20 most accurate brackets to use towards buying, refinancing or transforming a home.

“It is our mission to create superb experiences for our clients. This contest, with the possibility of making a billionaire, definitely matches that invoice,” Jay Farner, President and Chief Advertising and marketing Officer of Quicken Loans mentioned in an announcement. “We’ve seen quite a lot of contests providing a million dollars for placing together a very good bracket, which received us thinking, what's the excellent bracket price? We determined a billion dollars seems right for such a powerful feat.”

Quicken Loans is utilizing Berkshire Hathaway because the insurer for the $1 billion.

“Hundreds of thousands of people play brackets each March, so why not take a shot at turning into $1 billion richer for doing so,” Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, mentioned in an announcement. “Whereas there is no such thing as a simple path to success, it positive doesn’t get a lot simpler than filling out a bracket on-line.”

To be eligible for the $1 billion grand prize, entrants should be 21 years of age, a U.S. citizen and one of many first 10 million to register for the competition. Quicken Loans may broaden the entry pool to a bigger number of entrants. Submissions might be limited to one entry per household.

Registration will start on Monday, Mar. 3 and runs until Wednesday, Mar. 19. All members registering prior to the tournament selection process will obtain their brackets the night of Sunday, Mar. 16 when entrants can begin filling out their bracket.

More data on the competition shall be popping out within the following weeks.


Madness? Buffett offering $1B for perfect bracket


Pretty sure simply no one's ever picked a perfect bracket in the history of 03 Madness. The odds of doing this are supposedly 1 within 9. 2 quintillion, as if that number is even interpretable. Even Lloyd Christmas is not optimistic at this prospect. So with that in mind, this is a fairly brilliant PR tactic in order to earn some chatter.

Business Insider was the first to statement Warren Buffett – one of the wealthiest men in America – offers teamed up with Cleveland cro?t owner Dan Gilbert — another one of the richest males in America – to honor a Dr. Evil-approved $1 billion this year, should anyone post an NCAA tournament group that goes flawless in their prediction for the best event in united states sports. The two men are doing it through their companies: Berkshire Hathaway and Quicken financial loans.

the particular bummer? Those billion bone fragments will be spread out over 40 years at $25 million the pop, unless the champion (and just a reminder, you've got a better chance at leapfrogging Andrew Wiggins in this year's draft than you do selecting every one of these games correctly) may opt to take $500 mil and call it a day. Either way, can you imagine the taxes? hmm. I know.

"It is our mission to create incredible experiences for our clients. this particular contest, with the possibility of creating a billionaire, definitely fits that will bill, " Jay Farner, President and Chief advertising Officer of Quicken financial loans said in a statement. this individual added: "We've seen a lot of contests offering a million dollars with regard to putting together a good bracket, which usually got us thinking, what is the perfect bracket worth? all of us decided a billion bucks seems right for such an amazing feat. "

Quicken will also donate $1 million to inner-city Detroit and Cleveland non-profit organizations.


There are other prizes in the hopper. According to Quicken Loans' fb post, "Twenty (20) 1st Prizes of $100, 500 each to the owners of the top twenty scoring mounting brackets. Winners determined after finish of tournament. " the particular catch? That $100, 500 will be awarded in the form of "buying, refinancing or remodeling a home. " Hey, it's good, but there are conditions.


The Wall Street Journal was able to obtain Buffett for a quick quotation about all this hubbub.

Buffett said he fills out NCAA tournament brackets and, like most casual basketball fans, is not always proud of his recommendations. "I was not notably effective on the basketball court, plus I'm not notably effective in selecting winners, inch said Buffett, who origins for Creighton's basketball group, which is also based in Omaha, Neb.

If this March Madness does produce a major miracle, and a compitent happens to be one game from a 10-figure payday, Buffett states he would accompany him to the national championship on April seven. "He and I will probably be tugging for different teams, " Buffett said. "I'm not eager to write a check for $1 billion. inch

You're eligible to win this particular folkloric picks plunder if you're 21 or older plus live in the United States. As is the case with every NCAA tourney swimming pool, you gotta get your recommendations in by noon on the Wednesday of the tournament. And don't make Warren hassle you and be sending reminder texts in 11: 30. Nobody loves that person.

Arizona withstands UCLA run to stay perfect

LOS ANGELES – Arizona took its lumps against UCLA last season, losing three times to its Pac-12 rival. Those defeats stuck in the minds of the Wildcats, especially when they let a commanding lead slip away in the latest matchup.
Nick Johnson scored 22 points and the top-ranked Wildcats withstood UCLA's late 15-1 run to beat the Bruins 79-75 Thursday night, equaling the best start in school history at 16-0.

The Wildcats (3-0 Pac-12) blew a 13-point lead with 6: 16 to play and committed a season-worst 17 turnovers. UCLA shot 41 percent in the second half against a team that had been holding opponents to 36 percent in the final 20 minutes.

"Losing to them three times last year definitely made us more hungry, " said Gabe York, who had 12 points. "None of us forgot that. "

Johnson added: "It was definitely a chip on my shoulder. "

Kaleb Tarczewski made all six of his field goal attempts and scored a career-high 16 points for the Wildcats in the lone regular-season meeting between the longtime conference powers. The 1931-32 Wildcats also began the season 16-0.

"Our common goal is to get to the national championship, " York said. "We don't really talk about it. We take it one game at a time and I think that's what's giving us a great record right now. "

Freshman Zach LaVine hit a 3-pointer that got UCLA to 77-75 with 15 seconds left, but he missed another one with 2 seconds to go that would have left the Bruins down one.

"We knew they were going to make their run, " Johnson said. "We couldn't blow them out really, but we just tried to respond when they made their run and we did. "

Kyle Anderson had 16 points and 11 rebounds, and Jordan Adams added 12 points and a career-high 11 rebounds for the Bruins (12-3, 1-1). They haven't beaten a top-ranked team since March 13, 2003, when they took down Arizona in overtime in the Pac-12 tournament.

UCLA's other two losses came against Missouri and Duke.

"Being down to a very good team, we did a good job of fighting back, " Anderson said. "I'm not one for moral victories, but we did fight hard. "

Buoyed by loud chants of "U of A" in sold-out Pauley Pavilion, the Wildcats pulled away to a 12-point lead midway through the second half after UCLA kept it close in the first 20 minutes. Arizona starters Aaron Gordon (16 points), Brandon Ashley (nine points) and T. J. McConnell (eight points) all played with four fouls in the second half.

Johnson's dunk gave Arizona its largest lead of the game, 68-55.

That's when the Bruins reeled off a 15-1 run, including 13 consecutive points, to take their last lead at 70-69.

Adams hit a 3-pointer for a 68-all tie. He, Anderson and Bryce Alford combined to outscore the Wildcats, who made just one free throw during that stretch. Alford finished with 12 points.

"Being down one was a little bit nerve-racking, but Coach Miller is a really good coach, " Gordon said. "He gathered us and said, `OK, stick together, it's really time to come together and just stick with and just do what we'd been doing the whole game. It's a process and just stick to Arizona principles. "

The Wildcats were limited to one field goal over the final 1: 27, when they went 8 of 10 from the free throw line to hang on.

"Gabe York and Aaron Gordon making those four free throws at the very end really solidified things, " Arizona coach Sean Miller said. "That's not easy to do if you're Gabe because he came in off the bench, and those are two huge free throws. "

The Bruins' 79 points were the most scored by an Arizona opponent this season. They missed five straight free throws before their big run.

"They were huge, " Anderson said. "That's something we can fix. "

Arizona controlled the boards, 37-36, as it has done in all 16 games so far.

Arizona led 42-38 at the break, hitting three 3-pointers over the final 2: 56, when UCLA twice tied the game.

Retired Lakers coach Phil Jackson and Clippers coach Doc Rivers attended the game, along with former Bruins Baron Davis, Jordan Farmar and Ryan Hollins. Injured Lakers guard Steve Nash, actor John Lithgow, who sat with Jackson, and Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea were there, too.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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NCAA College Football Week 13 Recap- #16 NIU Stays Perfect


#16 NIU Huskies (11-0)- 35

Toledo Rockets (7-4)- 17


Line: NIU -2.0

Over/Under: 74


No. 16 Northern Illinois Huskies stays perfect as they defeated the Toledo Rockets on the road 35-17 to clinch the MAC West division and keep their BCS hopes alive.


The defining moment for the Huskies came when they were backed up against the end zone on third down, quarterback Jordan Lynch dropped back, waited for an opening and scrambled for a first down that ignited a 99-yard drive, clinching a victory over the Rockets on Wednesday night.


With the win, the Huskies (11-0, 7-0) extended their 24-game conference winning streak and also secured a fourth straight trip to the Mid-American Conference title game.


With the Huskies #16 ranking, they remain eligible for their second straight Bowl Championship Series appearance after playing in the Orange Bowl last season with only No. 15 Fresno State (also undefeated) standing in their way.


On the 99-yard drive, Lynch says, “That’s a momentum killer. It’s a real dagger to the defense.”


Jordan Lynch finished with 363 total yards and 3 touchdowns and ran for 62 yards on seven carries on the 99-yard march.


Toledo (7-4, 5-2 MAC) did a great job in the first half shutting down the NIU offense and taking a 10-7 halftime lead into the locker room.


But there was no panic for the Huskies who outscored the Rockets 28-7 in the second half to keep their perfect season in tact.


NIU coach Rod Carey said all he had to do was to remind his team to finish their drives.


That calmed the guys down,” Carey said.


Carey had complete faith in Jordan Lynch getting it done it second half.


He’s pretty decisive,” Carey said. “When he’s running and making plays, that’s just him.”


Lynch rushed for 161 yards on 28 attempts and it was his 31-yard touchdown run from up the middle on a fake handoff that put the Huskies up for good 21-17.


He’s always poised,” said NIU receiver Juwan Brescacin, who had eight catches for 121 yards. “That’s why we’re as good as we are.”


That they are… but is it enough to surpass the Fresno State Bulldogs for a automatic BCS bowl bid?


NIU was without their two leading receivers due to injuries on Wednesday night, Tommylee Lewis and Da’Ron Brown.


By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter



NFL Week 11 Game Recap- Saints Win 23-20 To Remain Perfect At Home


San Francisco 49ers (6-4)- 20

New Orleans Saints (8-2)- 23


Line: NO -3.5

Over/Under: 50.0


New Orleans kicker Garret Hartley kicks three 4th quarter field goals and the game winning 31-yarder as time expires as the Saints rally late to beat the San Francisco 49ers 23-20 on Sunday to stay in first place in the NFC South and remain perfect at home with a 6-0 mark.


With the Saints trailing late in the fourth 20-17, New Orleans got a break when an apparent forced fumble by Ahmad Brooks and recovered by Patrick Willis became a 15-yard penalty when Brooks was flagged for an illegal hit to the neck of Drew Brees that left him bloodied.


It was very frustrating. The game could have gone a totally different direction than what it went,” Brooks said. “I was just mad because that was a big play in the game. We lost, and that’s probably the reason why.”


All I remember is just getting clothes-lined in the chin and as I’m on the ground, I’m saying, ‘That’s got to be a flag,’” Brees said. “One of my teammates kind of picked me up and said, ‘Are you alright?’ and he said, ‘Don’t worry, there’s a flag.’


I said, ‘All right, good.’ Just took a moment, and you’ve got to get ready to go.”


After the penalty was assessed, Brees guided his offense down the field where the Saints had to settle for a tying 42-yard kick with 2:06 left.


Hartley, who had missed four field goals in the Saints’ previous three games, was not to be denied in this one as he made all three of his field goal attempts in the fourth quarter, including the game winner.


This team and this coaching staff and this organization never took their foot off the gas with me and here we are sitting at 8-2 and getting ready for Atlanta,” Hartley said.


San Francisco’s Colin Kaepernick passed for two touchdowns, but had another sub-par performance numbers wise with only 127 yards passing on 17 of 31 and sacked three times against one of the league’s best defenses as the 49ers (6-4) lost their second straight to fall 3½ games behind Seattle in the NFC West.


The greater the challenge, the greater the glory,” Niners coach Jim Harbaugh said. “That’s the way I look at it. I’m proud of our guys for the way they fight, and if we continue to do that, we’re going to win a lot of games.”


New Orleans (8-2) remains in first place 1½ games ahead of Carolina with the Panthers playing on Monday night against New England.


Bress finished 30 of 43 for 305 yards and one touchdown, but the team as a whole committed three turnovers, but thankfully the Saints defense did enough to keep them in it with a chance to escape with one.


You’re going to have games like this, Brees said. “You still find a way to win against a playoff-caliber opponent with a lot at stake at this point in the season. That says a lot.”


New Orleans receiver Marcus Colston finished with five catches for 80 yards to become the Saint’s all-time leader in yards receiving with 7,930, passing Eric Martin’s two-decade-old-mark of 7,854.


It’s definitely an awesome accomplishment,” Colston said. “It had a lot to do with some of the guys in this locker room and this coaching staff, but we’re in the midst of something a lot more meaningful right now.”





By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter


NFL Sunday Night Game Recap- Broncos No Longer Perfect

nfl broncos

NFL Sunday Night Game Recap- Broncos No Longer Perfect

Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts ended the Denver Broncos 17-game regular season win streak and any hopes of a perfect season this year by playing like the better team in game that featured the return of Peyton Manning back to the city where it all began and handing the Broncos their first loss of the season 39-33.


Manning may have been the quarterback of the past for the city of Indianapolis, but Sunday night proved that Andrew Luck is the quarterback of the future as he and his Colts played the game they had to play to beat what many considered the NFL’s best team.


It’s not real fun watching him,” Luck said of Manning. “But he is something to watch.”


All signs pointed to the Broncos (6-1) winning this football game, but three costly turnovers and defensive penalties in the second half proved too much to overcome for the Peyton led offense.


Despite solid numbers from Manning (29/49, 386 yards passing, three TDs), he was a victim of his own miscues as well, losing a fumble and throwing an interception.


Manning was also sacked four times, twice by former Colt teammate Robert Mathis, which one led to a safety for the Indy.


That’s my job, that’s how I help my team,” Mathis said. “It felt good.”


This is a game we need to learn from. We, I guess, had four turnovers and still somehow had a chance to win that game,” Manning said. “I would have liked to have seen it go to a two-point game down there toward the end and see what would have happened, but it never quite got to that point. You can go back to different parts of the game and we got behind, mistakes there, but we still had a chance there at the end. We certainly have to improve from this game because we weren’t as sharp execution-wise as we’d like to be.”


Denver out gained the Colts, 429 to 334, but in the end it was the turnovers that hurt them, the biggest turnover being running back Ronnie Hillman losing a fumble inside the Colts 5-yard line with 3:03 left in the game.


Andrew Luck was however, able to execute the plays when needed, going 21 of 38 with three touchdown passes and running for another score. Most importantly, the difference being no interceptions.


Win the win, the Colts (5-2) extended their lead in the AFC South by two games over Tennessee who lost earlier.


For the Broncos, who have looked unbeatable all year, scoring points at-will on opponents now find themselves in second-place behind the surprising and NFL’s only remaining unbeaten team… the Kansas City Chiefs.


Manning, in his first return to Lucas Oil Stadium since leaving the Colts, received a video tribute, a standing ovation from the crowd and was grateful and thankful for his time and all he did for the city and fans of Indianapolis bringing them a Super Bowl title.


Afterward, Manning acknowledged it was an emotional game and the week leading up to it.


Hopefully, we’ll have a chance to play these guys again because it would mean we made the playoffs,” Manning said. “I think if there is a next time it may be a little easier just because it was somewhat of an emotional week and it can be a little bit draining, I will say that.”


As good as the Broncos still are, the Colts were just the better team on Sunday night and did a great job exposing a Denver defense that seems to be just middle-of-the-pack to me. It was on off-night by the Bronco offense that got no help from the defensive side of the ball. 

By Mario Martinez


U.S. seals place atop World Cup qualification group with perfect home record

USA Fans

With a visit to Brazil already booked, the U.S. ensured a finish atop the CONCACAF World Cup qualifying group by beating Jamaica 2-zero in Kansas Metropolis. A colorless first half made it appear to be the crew had slipped into relaxation mode since their mission was already achieved by beating Mexico in September, but supervisor Jurgen Klinsmann’s second-half substitutions once once more had a major impression and immediately influenced both goals. This might show as soon as and for all that he’s, in fact, a wizard.

Proactive in his efforts to repair an ineffective beginning XI that was lacking the likes of Clint Dempsey and Michael Bradley attributable to accidents, Klinsmann confirmed his fearlessness in replacing unproductive star Landon Donovan with local hero Graham Zusi at halftime. He then put defender Edgar Castillo on in the 66th minute and at last added midfielder Sacha Kljestan for promising first-time starter Aron Johansson, who simply could not fairly discover the net in his 72 minutes. Simply five minutes after that last substitution was made, Sporting Kansas City’s Zusi scored in his dwelling stadium to place the U.S. up 1-zero.

4 minutes after that, Jozy Altidore prolonged his crew report by scoring in his sixth consecutive begin. His objective was arrange by Castillo and made it 2-0, which ended up being the final score.

The U.S. received all five of their home matches in the last stage of qualification and didn’t even allow a single purpose. It might probably’t get anymore excellent than that except each aim they scored somehow cured a disease and solved world hunger all on the same time. However as great as that achievement is, it will not assist a lot in a World Cup being held in Brazil.

One match stays within the hexagonal stage and the U.S will visit Panama with the target of proving that they can build on their wonderful dwelling type by successful persistently in hostile territory. It’s going to additionally provide an opportunity to additional prove the depth this staff has, notably within the midfield. And it’ll give Klinsmann a brand new venue to work his sorcery.

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Near perfection: Eric Chavez breaks up Yusmeiro Petit’s perfect game with two outs in ninth

Recalled on Aug. 23 to exchange an injured Matt Cain, who pitched the 22nd excellent sport in Major League Baseball historical past on June 13, 2012, Yusmeiro Petit fell one out wanting changing into the twenty fourth pitcher to throw a perfect recreation within the San Francisco Giants 3-0 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday evening.

All that stood between Petit and perfection was 35-yr-outdated veteran Eric Chavez. The rely went full — though Petit’s 2-2 pitch was close enough that it drew a response from every of the forty one,180 in attendance at AT&T Park. That solely added to the drama and nervousness. After which Chavez calmly flipped a ball into quick right subject that was simply out of the reach of a diving Hunter Pence. Actually, the play was very much paying homage to Pence’s nice catch to preserve Tim Lincecum’s no-hitter on July 13, however there’s a bit more floor to cover at AT&T Park than Petco Park and Pence simply couldn’t quite get there.

Petit was that shut, literally inches from perfection. As a substitute, he becomes the 12th pitcher to lose an ideal sport with two outs in the ninth inning. The newest? Yu Darvish on April 2 against the Houston Astros, so at least Petit’s maintaining good firm on that quick listing.

(USA At present) A 28-year-outdated right-hander from Zulia, Venezuela, Petit was appearing in solely his 76th sport — 40th begin — over his six yr career. Friday night time represented his fourth begin for the Giants this season. He had been spectacular in his first three begins, permitting no more than two runs in each outing. However he was on one other level in opposition to Arizona. Dominant can be one word to describe Petit‘s performance, however what actually made it work was his effectivity. The Giants had but to permit Petit to surpass the one hundred pitch mark or go previous six innings coming in. On Friday, he needed solely 95 pitches to set 28 up and knock 27 down.

Not bad for a guy with a 12-20 report and a 5.37 career ERA coming in.

It was an sudden masterpiece, but a masterpiece nonetheless. From start to end, Petit had the D-Backs off balance and swinging with hope, not confidence. But even with that level of efficiency, a bit assist defensively is necessary. Petit was the beneficiary of two spectacular performs in his remarkable outing. The first came simply three batters into the sport when Nationwide League MVP candidate Paul Goldschmidt ripped a grounder deep into the outlet at shortstop. Joaquin Arias, playing rather than gold glove contender Brandon Crawford, made the exceptional again-handed stab and the lengthy throw throughout for the out.

Then with two males out within the sixth inning, the opposing pitcher, left-handed hitting Patrick Corbin, flared a ball into short left area that had base hit written all over it. But identical to Pence did for Lincecum in July, an outfielder would save the day. Only on this occasion, it was defensive substitute Juan Perez, who was enjoying in solely his 19th career recreation.

Another tidbit value mentioning in Petit’s near historic outing, he never went to the windup, which is the same old beginning setup for pitchers when there are not any runners on base. Petit threw solely from the stretch your entire recreation, and in need of one hiccup, it could not have worked out any higher.


J.R. Smith’s coming back to the Knicks, which is exhilarating and scary, which is perfect

J.R. Smith will continue to inspire screaming, shouting and wailing in NYC. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

The NBA’s premiere Jekyll-and-Hyde act will return to Broadway this season, as ever-mercurial shooting guard J.R. Smith and the New York Knicks have agreed to a four-year deal worth nearly $25 million, according to Frank Isola of the New York Daily News. The deal brings the reigning Sixth Man of the Year and remarkable playoff flameout/goat back to a team that needs his shooting/secondary playmaking and fears his shot-jacking/arctic cold snaps in nearly equal measure.

Isola and Yahoo! Sports NBA columnist Adrian Wojnarowski reported Wednesday that team and player were nearing a pact, with the specific terms remaining unsettled. Marc Berman of the New York Post quoted Smith’s (very interesting) father, Earl Sr., as saying his son could sign as early as Friday to the contract he wound up receiving, provided no team offered “a crazy amount of money” for J.R.’s services. Apparently, no other team did.

Smith reportedly drew interest from several teams, including the Milwaukee Bucks, Phoenix Suns and Detroit Pistons. Barring a world-beating offer, though, none of those situations ever seemed much like a fit for Smith — or, at least, not nearly as good a fit as New York, where Smith established himself last season as a No. 2 scoring option playing starter’s minutes on a playoff team with (for better or worse) a seemingly limitless leash under head coach Mike Woodson. If the money’s roughly equal, the opportunity’s as good (if not better) and the, um, nightlife’s a factor, then why not re-up in New York?

The exact terms of that re-up won’t be confirmed until July 10, when the league’s annual moratorium on trades and free-agent signings concludes, but Smith will reportedly receive the maximum amount the Knicks could pay him as a result of having what the collective bargaining agreement refers to as his “Early Bird rights.”

The Early Bird exception allows teams to go over the salary cap to re-sign free agents who’ve played for them for two seasons without clearing waivers or changing teams. The highest number the Knicks could offer would be a four-year deal that starts at 104.5 percent of the 2012-13 league-average salary and increases by 7.5 percent every season. That, reportedly, is precisely what the Knicks have done.

Given the shortfalls in Smith’s game — the high-volume shooting, the relative offensive inefficiency, the tendency to ball-watch and fall asleep on defense, the possession-commandeering, etc. — you could argue that $6 million-plus a season is an overpay. And in a vacuum, it probably is. Given the context of the Knicks’ situation, though, I’m not sure it is.. or, at least, not a massive one. (J.R. probably can’t get away with calling himself a bargain anymore, though.)

By constructing an obscenely expensive, top-heavy and capped-out roster with no financial flexibility and limited avenues through which to add/keep talent, Glen Grunwald, James Dolan and company created an environment heading into this offseason in which the only real options for bolstering the present team were the remaining future draft picks at the Knicks’ disposal (three of which they used, regrettably, to import Andrea Bargnani), the mini-midlevel exception of just under $3.2 million (which they’re reportedly hoping to split to bring back Chris Copeland and Pablo Prigioni, though keeping both with that low a number seems unlikely) and veteran minimum contracts (with which Grunwald and company will have to hit home runs in finding the next Copeland/Prigioni-type contributors).

There was virtually zero chance of the Knicks replacing Smith’s contributions while also improving the core with just the mini-MLE and minimum deals, making the use of his Early Bird rights the kind of thing a team trying to win a title now must do. Yes, the Knicks will now pay somewhere in the neighborhood of $85 million next season and closer to $90 million in 2014-15 for the core of a second-round team plus Bargnani and Tim Hardaway Jr., which is bananas. But they were already obscenely expensive, and the Knicks front office viewed Smith as having value to that core.

And for all his warts, he was an integral part of the best Knicks team in 16 years, buttressing his often-chaotic shooting/scoring game by working hard on the glass (grabbing a career-high 16.3 percent of opponents’ misses, averaging a career-best 5.3 rebounds per game), working well as a pick-and-roll ball-handler, and playing small forward more often and more effectively than in years past as part of the Knicks’ successful push toward small-ball lineups. The most tantalizing aspect of Smith’s ’12-’13 season, though, was his regular-season finish, in which he committed to attacking the basket to cut low-percentage looks out of his diet while generating a career-best amount of free-throw attempts en route to becoming one of the league’s most efficient offensive players.

For a month or so.

The most terrifying aspect, of course, was his postseason performance, in which a moment of lost composure resulted in a suspension that completely derailed his game, sending his shooting percentages spiraling south of 30 percent at the absolute worst possible time for a team in desperate need of a source of offensive firepower against a stalwart Indiana Pacers defense. (This, in an odd little twist of tortured fate, probably made it easier for the Knicks to hang onto Smith.)

By signing this deal, the Knicks are not making a bet that they’ll get Good J.R. rather than Bad J.R. They are acknowledging that they will get both, and that because this roster so desperately needs the former, they will have to live with the latter, and deal with the consequences. You pay your money and you take your chances, and nobody does more of both than the New York Knicks.

The other sticking point, from a Knicks fan’s perspective, are the final two years of Smith’s contract. According to Berman of the Post, the Knicks had discussed with Smith a two-year, $11.5 million contract that would afford Smith the option of hitting free agency again sooner (and with the Knicks holding full Bird rights, enabling them to pay him even more, if the two sides so chose) but would also keep New York on track to maintain maximum flexibility after 2014-15. That didn’t wind up happening, which is sort of a bummer in the longer term.

Those who made arguments in favor of (or, at least, not in total opposition to) the Bargnani deal noted that swapping Bargnani for sharpshooter Steve Novak actually saved New York money in the 2015-16 season, in which Novak is owed a guaranteed $3.75 million but Bargnani will be a free agent. That means the Knicks would only have Raymond Felton’s player option, Iman Shumpert’s qualifying offer and Hardaway Jr.’s rookie deal on the books that summer, priming the pump for a free-agent reload. Adding Smith to the ledger for ’15-’16 and ’16-’17 would seem to at least mitigate, if not undermine, that future flexibility.

There remains a chance that Smith doesn’t see the final year of the deal. For one thing, as’s John Schuhmann notes, the dollar amount’s not so wild as to make Smith untradeable at any point during the life of the contract. For another, Isola and Howard Beck of the New York Times both reported Thursday that Smith will hold a player option for the fourth year, meaning he could once again opt out and seek a longer/more lucrative deal after the 2015-16 season, when he’ll be nearing age 31.

Still, the structure of the option places that decision in Smith’s hands, just as the recommitment makes Smith one of the primary determining factors of whether the Knicks can really become a viable title contender.

Deep breaths, Knicks fans. Deep breaths.

Leonardo Bonucci ends streak of 12 perfect penalties to put Spain in Confederations Cup final


Spain beat Italy on penalties in a match that seemed like it would never end to reach their first Confederations Cup final. After 120 minutes of blown opportunities from both sides, the rematch of the Euro 2012 final went to a penalty shootout and all of the sudden, no one could miss. The two teams put on a flawless display of penalty kick brilliance that started with a Panenka from Italy's Antonio Candreva which had Spain goalkeeper Iker Casillas sitting on his butt and watching as it floated into the net.

Eleven more excellent penalties followed. Xavi and Alberto Aquilani. Andres Iniesta and Daniele De Rossi. Gerard Pique and Sebastian Giovinco. Sergio Ramos and Andrea Pirlo. Juan Mata and Riccardo Montolivo. Sergio Busquets and…then Italy defender Leonardo Bonucci sent his attempt sailing over the crossbar (pictured above). Spain just needed to make one more to win.

[ Match photos: Spain defeats Italy on penalty kicks ]

Jesus Navas then converted Spain's seventh successful spot kick to give them the win and set up a final against host nation Brazil. For Italy, it was a far superior performance to their last meeting with Spain, in which they were dominated 4-0. But neither side could've complained much about losing since both had plenty of golden chances to score during the two hours of play that preceded the shootout. It was an exhausting and largely frustrating game for both teams and one that Brazil probably enjoyed for both of those reasons.

Here's video of the full shootout (it's very much worth watching regardless of knowing the end result)…

Once it was all over, Iker Casillas stopped to trade shirts with Gianluigi Buffon before celebrating the victory, summing up the level of admiration the two worthy adversaries have for each other.



The 10-man rotation, starring four possible perfect fits for the 2013 NBA Draft

Could Nerlens Noel benefit from a trip to the desert? (Joshua C. Cruey/Orlando Sentinel/MCT/Getty Images)

A look around the league and the Web that covers it. It’s also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren’t always listed in order of importance. That’s for you, dear reader, to figure out.

C: Grantland. With the 2013 NBA Draft coming up on Thursday night, high-school hoops coach and Xs-and-Os maven Brett Koremenos identifies four players and teams whose marriage he thinks would prove mutually benefical.

PF: GQ. Likely lottery pick Trey Burke’s got a head-start on his fellow 2013 NBA draftees in the style department, getting a Gentlemen’s Quarterly co-sign and a spread featuring the former Michigan Wolverine in some college-student-budget gear. (We’re guessing Mr. Burke’ll be shopping in slightly ritzier shops after Thursday.)

SF: Sports Illustrated. Paul Forrester on the evolutionary challenges facing recent draftees like Anthony Davis and Andre Drummond, as well as near-future selections like Cody Zeller: “For big men in today’s game, the process of becoming a pro has proved increasingly complicated.”

SG: Eye on Basketball. Zach Harper breaks down the strengths and weaknesses of 10 big men who’ll hear their names called on Thursday.

PG: SB Nation. Jonathan Tjarks on how, despite significant increases in international scouting and prospect evaluation efforts, players like German point guard Dennis Schroeder, Greek youngster Giannis Adetokunbo (or, perhaps, Antetokoumpo — there is apparently not consensus on this just yet) and Russian wing Sergey Karasev remain relatively unknown and, perhaps as a result, better bets to go to established and patient teams: “For a young player, it’s better to have a small role on a good team than a big role on a bad one. Coming off the bench didn’t prevent James Harden from getting a max contract.”

6th: Grantland. After Thursday’s draft, we’re pushing full-steam ahead for free agency on July 1, and Zach Lowe’s got a half-dozen questions worth considering as we approach the league’s annual cash grab.

7th: Miami Herald. Dan LeBatard on the role that luck played in the NBA Finals: “Really? The difference between a parade and the worst feeling in the world is one shot?”

8th: CSN Philly. The odd silence and mishandling of initial (and apparently inaccurate) reports of CEO Adam Aron’s firing have led John Gonzalez, among others, to wonder what’s going on with the retooled but seemingly still rudderless Philadelphia 76ers front office: “… why does it feel like the Sixers are adrift even though they recently restructured the franchise masthead?”

9th: UniWatch. Check out some pretty dope (and some other not-quite-so-dope) fan-submitted jersey redesigns for the soon-to-be-rebranded Charlotte Hornets.

10th: SB Nation. Ben Swanson made up dinosaur mascots for all the NBA teams because the Toronto Raptors are reportedly thinking about becoming something other than the Raptors. (It’s the offseason. Have some fun.)

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