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Friday, April 27, 2012

2012 NFL Rapid Reports Mock Draft

After weeks of speculation about where the teams they cover will direct their first-round efforts, the embedded NFL RapidReporters at had a chance to lead some mythical war room debate and project the way the dominoes would fall Thursday night.

Among other surprises, our RapidReports team sees the Browns defying NFL convention and taking a running back in the top five, the Rams and Dolphins pleasing their fans by drafting much-needed playmakers, and players like Memphis DT Dontari Poe and Ohio State OT Mike Adams falling out of the first round entirely.

A caveat worth mentioning: we didn't allow our GMs-for-a-day to trade up or down, so no passing the buck possible for the purposes of this exercise.

The 2012 NFL Draft is finally here.
We already know who the top two picks will be on Thursday night at Radio City Music Hall. But that doesn't mean there won't be any drama.
The Indianapolis Colts have already confirmed they they will select Stanford's Andrew Luck while the Washington Redskins revealed shortly before the draft that they will take Heisman winner Robert Griffin III (surprise!). 

As for the rest the draft, nobody knows. The hundreds of mock drafts that have been released over the past few weeks have projected seemingly infinite outcomes. Will the Vikings go with USC's Matt Kalil? Or maybe they'll snag wide receiver Justin Blackmon?
Will there be any trades concocted in the various draft war rooms? Will Miami take Ryan Tannehill? Could he really be the next Dan Marino?
All of these questions will be answered tonight. The first round of the draft begins at 8 p.m. ET. Rounds two and three will take place on Friday night and the four through seven will be done on Saturday starting at noon.
Follow our live blog for each pick and commentary throughout the draft. CONTINUE . . . . .

2012 NFL Draft: Last-minute buzz heading into Thursday night

NEW YORK -- It happens every year.
After months of studying players, talking with team officials and analyzing how the first round of the NFL draft might play out ... it all changes in the last couple of days before the event begins.
Teams stop being so close to the vest with their information, partially to start trade conversations, but also because team meetings have concluded and franchises have finally zeroed in the players they deem worthy of multi-million dollar investments.

Last year, for example, it did not become apparent that four quarterbacks would be taken in the top 12 picks until the day before the draft. The Tennessee Titans ended up selecting Jake Locker and the Minnesota Vikings took Christian Ponder, despite their inconsistency and injury issues, respectively.

So, here's the last-minute draft buzz making the rounds this year. A few items would've seemed highly unrealistic just one month ago. Some or none of this of this could come to fruition. This unpredictability is what makes the NFL draft so washable. CONTINUE . . . . .

Sunday, April 15, 2012

NHL:Devils-Panthers Preview

Going down 3-0 in a playoff game against Martin Brodeur is not a great idea.
Going down 2-0 in a playoff series against Brodeur is even worse.


Over Brodeur's storied time in the New Jersey nets, the Devils are a perfect 10-for-10 when winning the first two games of a postseason series. New Jersey could get there again Sunday night, when the Devils visit the Florida Panthers in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference first-round matchup.
New Jersey used a three-goal start to fuel what became a 3-2 victory in Game 1, and the Panthers understand another home loss in Game 2 would mean big trouble.

''We've got to split here,'' Florida defenseman Brian Campbell said. ''That's what we've got to look at right now. We know what we have to do. We know what areas we need to improve on. So we'll look at that. But definitely, we have to grab Game 2.''   Continue - - - -  

Monday, April 9, 2012

Swann thrilled 10-wicket No 1 ranking

Swann thrilled 10-wicket haul helped England retain No 1 ranking
England off spinner Graeme Swann has said he enjoyed playing a central role in their win against Sri Lanka in the second Test match at Colombo, during which he snapped 10 wickets.
England off spinner Graeme Swann has said he enjoyed playing a central role in their win against Sri Lanka in the second Test match at Colombo, during which he snapped 10 wickets.

Swann said he was thrilled to help England rescue their number one Test team rankings, and that the win would boost the morale of the team for the upcoming Test series against the West Indies and South Africa.
"I was absolutely thrilled to have played my part in helping England retain our status as the No 1 Test team in the world. To stay at the top is important, and will give us a big lift for the home series against West Indies and South Africa," Swann wrote in his column for The Sun.

Swann revealed he was under tremendous pressure to perform, as every one had kept their eyes on him to perform in Sri Lanka.
"There was a lot of pressure on me to deliver in the Second Test because I was the only spinner, although Samit Patel was there as back-up. When the ball turned a little on day one, everyone was looking to me to perform," Swann said,
"Thankfully, I was able to grab six wickets in the second innings and 10 in the match. To take a 10-for is a big thing. I've only managed it five times in my first-class career, and especially in such a big victory," he added.