SportsNet - February 2013

England FA Cup: Arsenal Vs Blackburn Rovers Match Preview

on February 15 2013 4:59 PM

 

Arsene Wenger looks set to rotate his squad from the team that overcame Sunderlan in a 1-0 win last Saturday, as he appears intent upon resting some of his key players ahead of their Champions League clash with Bayern Munich on Tuesday.

Team News

Arsenal

Ignasi Miquel, having come on as a late substitute in the win against the Black Cats, looks set to deputize at center back, as Thomas Vermaelen (ankle) and Laurent Koscielnt (calf) continue to struggle with injury.

There are further repercussions from their exertions against Sunderland as Jack Wilshere's dead leg in that tie rules him out of this FA Cup clash. Carl Jenkinson is also ruled out with suspension after his red card in the same game.

Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey, Santi Cazorla and Oliver Giroud are also likely to be rested from the team that started the Sunderland game, with Abou Diaby, Gervinho, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Tomas Rosicky and Lukas Podolski coming in, as their manager clearly has one eye on their Champions League game in midweek.

Blackburn Rovers

Nine-Figure MLB Contracts that Turned Out All Right

on February 15 2013 1:28 PM
Nine-Figure MLB Contracts that Turned Out All Right

 

When word hit that the Seattle Mariners were offering Felix Hernandez a 7-year, $175 million extension, a number of usual suspects came out of the woodworks to claim that it was too much money.  Many people are under the assumption that high-dollar contracts never work out, as they tend to be paying players for what they have done in the past as opposed to the future. 

However, this is not necessarily true.  In fact, there are several nine-figure deals that have worked out just fine for all parties: 

9.  Cliff Lee, Phillies

5 years, $120 million from 2011-15

Don’t let the won-loss record fool you:  Cliff Lee was one of the NL’s best pitchers last season. 

LeBron James' Quest to Surpass Larry Bird as the NBA's Greatest Small Forward

on February 15 2013 12:09 PM
LeBron James' Quest to Surpass Larry Bird as the NBA's Greatest Small Forward

LeBron James has been drawing a lot of comparisons to the all-time greats as of late. His recent six-game streak of scoring 30 points while shooting 60 percent from the field is one piece of evidence that we are witnessing an all-time great entering his prime. "King James" has raised his level of play to such a level of excellence that his NBA peers simply cannot match.

If he is above comparison to most current NBA superstars, then the next logical place to weigh and compare his greatness to is the past. After finally winning that elusive first championship ring last season, he is drawing more comparisons to all-time greats Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson instead of current rivals Kevin Durant and Carmelo Anthony. 

James has a long way to go before matching Jordan or Magic, but there is one all-time great that he could legitimately surpass in the next couple of seasons: Larry Bird. This should be the primary target for LeBron as overtaking Bird would elevate the "King" to a new title: the greatest small forward to ever play the game.

Kansas City Chiefs News: Trading For Nick Foles Might Be Smartest Way For Andy Reid To Quickly Rebuild The Chiefs

on February 15 2013 8:12 AM
Kansas City Chiefs News: Trading For Nick Foles Might Be Smartest Way For Andy Reid To Quickly Rebuild The Chiefs

 

New Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid could trade for his former Philadelphia Eagles backup quarterback, Nick Foles. Both USA Today and NFL.com report that the Chiefs would interested if the Eagles opt to deal Foles.

The trade could be the smartest way for Reid to quickly rebuild the Chiefs. The franchise that went 2-14 in 2012, has many areas in need of repair. There are major issues along the offensive line and at wide receiver.

The defense is also soft against the run and the young secondary has taken several steps back since 2010. Fixing the quarterback position should be Reid's first job, but that shouldn't force him into using the first pick in the 2013 NFL draft on Geno Smith.

Neither Smith or his closest competitor, Ryan Nassib, are standout, first overall selections. Trading for Foles would free the Chiefs to use the draft's prime pick to strengthen along the trenches.

Arsenal Transfer Rumours: Gunners Scout Perfect Summer Signing, Celtic Star Victor Wanyama

on February 14 2013 12:54 PM
Arsenal Transfer Rumours: Gunners Scout Perfect Summer Signing, Celtic Star Victor Wanyama

 

Arsenal could be preparing a summer move for Celtic star Victor Wanyama. According to The Daily Telegraph, the Gunners scouted Wanyama during Celtic's UEFA Champions League defeat to Juventus. Wanyama would be the perfect signing for Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger. The powerful and combative Parkhead ace is exactly the kind of robust player Arsenal need at the base of their midfield.

A natural defensive midfielder, Wanyama holds his position in front of a back four. He excels at disrupting attacks with decisive and forceful tackling. That positional discipline and precise tackling, sets Wanyama apart from Arsenal's previous defensive midfielder, Alex Song.

The Cameroon star was frequently guilty of abandoning his position in favour of an ill-advised foray forward. This often left the Arsenal rearguard undermanned and exposed to counterattacks. Song also lacked a refined tackling technique and didn't always fully commit himself to a challenge.

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