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7) While were on the subject of kicking in the CFL, why dont coaches use a rule that invites the idea of a short kickoff at any and all times? If a kicker can put the ball high in the air at least 10 yards away, volleyball tactics can take over and if a member of the kicking team can bat the ball out of bounds, or otherwise be the last player to touch the ball, possession is awarded. As I see it, if the kicker is proficient, theres at least a 50-50 chance of recovering the ball every time.8) Have you ever heard one of those intermission reports with comments from an NHL assistant coach that contained interesting information? Now, I can answer "yes". MSGs John Giannone quoted Ulf Samuelsson of the Rangers as saying, following Sundays second period against Edmonton: "That could be the worst Ive seen since Ive been here and Ive seen a lot of games. Were getting crushed by Edmonton in our building and thats embarrassing." Im not sure if head coach Alain Vigneault liked the fact his thunder was stolen, but if assistant coaches are going to be fed to broadcasters, they might as well say something.9) Whos your NFL MVP? Id have voted for Peyton Manning if he hadnt lost to Tom Brady, and Ill vote for Andrew Luck if he out-performs Brady this Sunday, but otherwise, I guess Im voting for Brady.10) How do you feel if youre Patric Hornqvist? You get traded from the Nashville Predators to the Pittsburgh Penguins and you find yourself on Sidney Crosbys line and youre part of the NHLs best power play, all of which helps you to score 18 points in 13 games, good for a fifth-place tie in NHL scoring. I guess you feel pretty good.11) If youre a pro golfer, do you care if your first win on the PGA Tour is at the Sanderson Farms Championship in Jackson, Mississippi in early November? If youre Nick Taylor, born in Winnipeg and raised in Abbotsford, I guess you dont. It beats your first win being in the future.12) How many games will the Philadelphia 76ers win in this NBA season? I think its pretty easy to fix the over-under number at 10. And I think its pretty hard to decide which way to go.13) Is Ndamukong Suh of the Detroit Lions still the NFLs dirtiest player? I think not, because he is now better recognized as the NFLs best defensive lineman not named J.J. Watt. And he wants to be paid accordingly. The bad reputation brought too many flags, and ultimately, not enough dollars in his next contract, which is due prior to next season.14) Last week here, I nominated Ryan Miller (VAN), Jonas Hiller (CGY) and Radim Vrbata (VAN) as the best NHL free agent signings. I didnt give an answer. Can I do that now? Its Anton Stralman of the Tampa Bay Lightning.15) Do you think Rene Bourque was more surprised when the Montreal Canadiens waived him, or when no other team claimed him?16) Chien Ming-Wang, armed with a minor-league contract, will be at the spring training camp of an MLB team. You have at least two questions, Im sure. Why? and Surely not the Blue Jays camp? I only know why its not the Blue Jays camp. In his last three starts for Toronto in 2013, Chien allowed 18 runs over six and one-third innings. In 2015, he will hope to pitch for Atlanta.17) Whats harder - understanding how the Arizona Cardinals have the NFLs best record with Carson Palmer at quarterback, or expecting that to continue without Carson Palmer at quarterback?18) How do you feel about point differential as a meaningful NBA stat? The Toronto Raptors lead the NBA at +11.6. The Houston Rockets are next at +11.0. That says something to me. (Of course, Torontos 32-point blowout of the aforementioned Philly 76ers has something to do with it. The Rockets had their shot at Philly and won by only 11).19) When the Tampa Bay Rays listed the names of eight candidates for their managerial post vacated by Joe Maddon, it was assumed that the next list would be shorter. Instead, it is larger, with the names of Barry Larkin and Doug Glanville newly added. Do you like this idea? The Rays are just the latest team to use social media to make their job search transparent. Next thing you know, the fan-starved Rays will be selling ticket packages with voting privileges included.20) If Calgarys Johnny Gaudreau wins NHL rookie honours, hell be the first Calder Trophy recipient selected No. 100 or higher in the draft (No. 104) since ______? (The answer is goalie Andrew Raycroft, chosen in 1998 by the Boston Bruins after 134 other players had been taken). Kerry Wood Jersey .com) - Markus Granlund scored the game-winning goal as the Calgary Flames used an early offensive flurry to defeat the Los Angeles Kings, 2-1, on Monday. Fergie Jenkins Cubs Jersey . -- Albert Pujols is thrilled to have a reason to forget about his first two disappointing seasons with the Los Angeles Angels. http://www.thecubsteamshop.com/Cubs-And ... ds-Jersey/. You can watch coverage on TSN, TSN2 and CTV beginning today at 3pm et/Noon pt. The championships will feature approximately 250 of Canadas best figure skaters in senior, junior and novice as they vie for spots on the national team, international assignments and will act as the final step in the 2014 Olympic qualification process. Kendall Graveman Cubs Jersey .The Hamilton Tiger-Cat defensive back always has the required receipt. But he also walks around with a tangle of metal screws, rods and plates after breaking his neck in 2006 playing high school football in Louisiana. Kendall Graveman Jersey . So he and his Toronto FC teammates say they will have no problem getting up for their Amway Canadian Championship final against rival Montreal Impact, even if the result doesnt count toward Major League Soccer standings. NEW YORK -- Baseball writers could elect a quartet of players to the Hall of Fame for the first time in more than a half-century. Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas appeared to be on track to gain election from the Baseball Writers Association of America on Wednesday, and Craig Biggio could join them. The last time four players received the required 75 per cent was in 1955, when Joe DiMaggio, Gabby Hartnett, Ted Lyons and Dazzy Vance all got in. Surprisingly, it was the third ballot appearance for DiMaggio, who fell 81 votes short in 1953 and 14 shy the following year. When he announced his retirement in December 2008, Maddux wouldnt talk about the Hall. "I think theres a lot of good players in there," he said. "Dont really have any thoughts on it." Maddux could break the mark for highest percentage (98.84), set when in 1992 when Tom Seaver topped the record Ty Cobb set in 1936. "I just have just never come across any human being, whether theyre a voter or just a fan, that doesnt think Greg Maddux is a Hall of Famer and one of the greatest pitchers who ever pitched," The Boston Globes Nick Cafardo said Tuesday. "I cant imagine someone not voting for him. So I would guess that hes going to break Seavers record." Maddux is among three high-profile players on the BBWAA ballot for the first time, joined by his former Atlanta teammate Glavine and Thomas. Holdovers include Biggio, who topped voting at 68 per cent last year, 39 votes short of the 75 per cent needed for election. It was only the second time in four decades the BBWAA failed to elect anyone. Ken Gurnick of MLB.com, a former reporter for the Los Angeles Herald Examiner, said Tuesday the only player he voted for was Jack Morris, on the writers ballot for the 15th and final time after falling 42 votes shy last year. "To me, I didnt exclude Maddux. I excluded everybody from that era, everybody from the Steroid Era," Gurnick said. "It wasnt about Greg Maddux, it was about the entire era. I just dont know who did and who didnt." Gurnick said Morris also was the only player he voted for in 2013 and added he intends to abstain in future elections. "Some people quibblle over when the era starts, but the bulk of his career was in my opinion well before all of the widespread use of performance-enhancing drugs," Gurnick said.dddddddddddd Given that 569 ballots were submitted in 2013, Maddux likely could be omitted from six this year and still break the record set by Seaver, who received 425 of 430 votes. Seaver was left off by Paul Hagen of the Philadelphia Daily News, Bob Hertzel of The Pittsburgh Press and freelance writer Bob Hunter. They all submitted blank ballots to protest the decision by the Hall of Fame board of directors to bar Pete Rose from the vote because of his lifetime ban from baseball following a gambling probe. Retired writers Deane McGowen and Bud Tucker also did not vote for Seaver. "If it had cost Seaver anything, yeah, I probably would regret it at some level, but it didnt really cost him anything," Hagen, now with MLB.com, said Tuesday. "He still got the highest vote (percentage) total ever, and he wouldnt have been unanimous anyway." The Steroids Era has impacted the vote totals of players with stellar statistics. In initial appearances last year, Mike Piazza was at 57.8 per cent, Roger Clemens at 37.6, Barry Bonds at 36.2 and Sammy Sosa at 12.5. Mark McGwire received 16.9 on his seventh try. The Baseball Think Factory website compiled votes by writers who made their opinions public, and with 194 ballots had Maddux at 99.5 per cent, followed by Glavine (95), Thomas (90) and Biggio (78). The websites count had Piazza (69), Morris (61) and Jeff Bagwell (58) falling short along with Tim Raines (54), Bonds (42), Clemens (41), Curt Schilling (37) and Mike Mussina (26). McGwire (11) and Sosa (8) had little support. Approximately 600 writers who have been members of the BBWAA for 10 consecutive years at any point considered the 36-player ballot. Next years ballot could be even more crowded when Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, John Smoltz, Carlos Delgado and Gary Sheffield become eligible, five years after their retirements. The BBWAA last month formed a committee to study whether the organization should ask the Hall to change the limit of 10 players per ballot. ' ' '
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