The Lakers and the Dodgers have company in Los Angeles. The L.A. Kings of the National Hockey League are champions, too. With their 6-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils Monday night, the Kings captured the franchise’s first Stanley Cup.The 4-2 best-of-seven series win ended 45 years of disappointment for the Kings, who did so with a remarkable playoff run of 16-4. They were an eighth seed, by far the lowest to win the Cup. Since the NHL started seeding its conferences one through eight in 1993-94, only one bottom-four seed had ever won it all – the 1995 Devils, a fifth seed in a lockout-shortened season.These Kings were commoners for much of 2011-12, underachieving in a league of salary-capped equality. General manager Dean Lombardi fired coach Terry Murray and brought in Darryl Sutter in December. He acquired sniper Jeff Carter before the trade deadline in February. Despite a talented roster that had been expected to contend, the Kings ranked second-to-last in the league in scoring. They grabbed the final playoff spot in the West.And look at them now. After taking a 3-0 series lead, New Jersey took Games 4 and 5. But that was the end of the Devils’ good fortune. The Kings jumped out to a 3-0 advantage Monday night and did not let up.Now, they will receive a champions’ parade soon — the same accorded to Lakers and Dodgers.
Photo by www.bostinno.streetwise.comA suspension handed down to New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez must be on the horizon. What else is there to think when his lawyer, David Cornwell, says he’s already looking to counter any punishment.“We are focused on an appeal,” Cornwell, said in an interview on ESPN radio in New York.And there you have it. Word on the street is that Major League Baseball soon will exact penalties on Rodriguez and others allegedly involved in the Biogenesis case.Cornwell said Rodriguez’s “primary focus” is playing in the majors again. Rodriguez is in Tampa rehabbing a quad injury that postponed his return to the Yankees last week. Clearly, New York wants no part of a Rodriguez return. Why? A lot of it is a money game.The team would like to get from under his contract that has about $100 million left on it. If Rodriguez hits 13 more homers, he would tie Willie Mays with 660 on the all-time list and receive a $6-million bonus. For every 50 games that Rodriguez is suspended, the Yankees would save $7.5 million.Rodriguez, 38, would be eligible to play during the appeals process, which could take weeks or months. If he has no setbacks physically and spends the full five days on his minor league rehab, Rodriguez could return to the Yankees on Aug. 6 in Chicago against the White Sox.However, MLB may try to suspend Rodriguez under its collective bargaining agreement instead of its drug rules, according to The Associated Press. If MLB goes ahead with the suspension under the labor deal, Rodriguez would lose virtually any chance of delaying the penalty while he appeals the case.He has never been disciplined for a drug offense, and a first offender under baseball’s Joint Drug Agreement is entitled to an automatic stay if the players’ union files a grievance. That means the penalty is put on hold until after an arbitrator rules.Cornwell said the goal for Rodriguez is to have “no discipline,” not just a reduction in any suspensions. There have been numerous reports that Rodriguez could face anywhere from a 50-game suspension to a lifetime ban.
We’re launching a sports newsletter. 🏆 Join the squad. Subscribe See more NFL predictions NFL See more MLB predictions Things That Caught My EyeThe Most Improved Player has really improvedWith an average of 36.8 points in the first four games of the season, Giannis “The Greek Freak” Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks sure as heck looks like an MVP contender this year. The kid is only 22 years old and is hot off last year’s Most Improved Player award. [FiveThirtyEight]They say there are Angelenos still sitting in post-game traffic to this very dayIt was an 11-inning absurdity Wednesday night in L.A., with a win probabilty chart that causes bona fide whiplash just looking at it. Houston notched their first-ever franchise World Series win in what will go down as an ultimate case study in both why the east coast hates extra innings and also how to perfectly mismanage a bullpen: The Dodgers used nine pitchers in Game 2 after pulling Rich Hill despite throwing just four excellent innings. [FiveThirtyEight]Irish not in control of own destiny, per usualNotre Dame is 6-1 this year, but despite that record and the strong chance that a one-loss team will make the College Football Playoff, they’re still only an 11 percent chance to make the postseason. Indeed, even if they win out — they have a 21 percent chance of doing so — their destiny is still in the hands of others since they won’t have a conference title to bring up in their bid to get in over other one-loss teams. [FiveThirtyEight]32nd time is the charmPenn State (No. 2) faces Ohio (No. 6) this weekend in what will be the biggest Big Ten game of the entire year. It’s a pretty solid rivalry: They’ve played 31 times in the AP ranking era, and 30 of those times one of the two teams was ranked. FiveThirtyEight has Ohio State as the favorite here, with a 61 percent chance to win in Columbus. An Ohio State win would decimate Penn State’s chances of winning the conference and more than halve their chances of making the playoff. A Penn State win, probabilistically speaking, basically ends Ohio State’s season and gives the Nittany Lions a 69 percent chance of making the playoffs. [ESPN, FiveThirtyEight]Golden Knights: pretty good!The Vegas Golden Knights are off to a terrific start, sitting atop the Western Conference at 6-1. By all appearances, Vegas has some of the best talent of any expansion team in NHL history back 1991. The average expansion team since then has put up 57 points in its first season, which is awful: Only four normal teams in the past four seasons did that. [FiveThirtyEight]The return of the kingRoberto Aguayo is a kicker who was drafted in the second round of the 2016 draft by the Bucs. Read that sentence again. Kicker, second round, Bucs. Remember that insanity? Anyway, his NFL debut was not up to second-round drafted Bucs kicker standards apparently and he was cut on national television in a preseason game. Well he’s back, and with no more ridiculous expectations to live up to on the Panthers’ practice squad. I see a winner there. [NFL.com]Make sure to try your hand at our fun NFL can you beat the FiveThirtyEight predictions? game!Big Number8 home runsIn a new World Series record, there were eight home runs in Game 2. “Obviously, the balls are juiced,” said Astros pitcher Dallas Keuchel, and most stats nerds everywhere and also anyone with eyes. [CBS Sports, FiveThirtyEight, FiveThirtyEight, The Ringer, FiveThirtyEight, Seriously there’s a lot of evidence for this on FiveThirtyEight]Leaks from Slack: emily:women’s hockey Canada v USA is in boston tonight at BU with a great crowd 🏒 🏒 🏒daniel.levitt:you should really help me write a hockey story as I know v. little. We could maybe do one about the #goleafsgoemily:also Canada won! both teams getting in their groove for the olympics, USA took the first game of what could be 8 games between the two (if you consider 2 possible Four Nations tournament games on top of 6 The Time Is Now tour friendlys), announcers were mentioning some stats of just how many times the two have met and how often they’ve been in Worlds/Olympics finals together. Wonder where they fall on the Big Rivalry list.daniel.levittSo Emily’s writing and editing? Sounds good.emily:(also small hockey update: I did make http://isadammcquaidhealthy.com/)[Check out IsAdamMcQuaidHealthy.com for all your “Is Adam McQuaid healthy?” questions!]Predictions MLB All newsletters Oh, and don’t forgetA UNC player lost a video game an broke his hand, as your Duke fan friend probably already texted to you.
OSU junior safety Vonn Bell (11) dives toward the end zone after an interception in a game against Minnesota on Nov. 7. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo EditorWith the No. 61 overall, Vonn Bell joins the New Orleans Saints as their second, second-round pick joining teammate Michael Thomas who was selected by New Orleans at No. 47 overall. The former Buckeye safety started two season under coach Urban Meyer as an imperative member of the defense.Bell was projected by many to go in the late first round, and no later than the top 10 picks in the second round. As is the case at times in the annual allocation of collegiate players, Bell became a victim of suffering through NFL draft purgatory. Nearly falling to the third round, the Saints ended the suspense and drafted the defensive back by acquiring the third-to-last pick in the second round from the Patriots through the Cardinals. Bell came out of high school as a five-star recruit but didn’t see much playing time in his true freshman season until the postseason. Making his first start as a Buckeye in the 2014 Orange Bowl, the 5-foot-11 safety made an immediate impact by intercepting Clemson’s quarterback Tajh Boyd inside the red zone.In 2014, Bell, then a sophomore, earned a starting safety position and finished second on the team with 92 tackles. The Georgia native also ended the 2014 season ranked ninth in the country with six interceptions, including a span of three straight games with a pick.His most impactful takeaway came in the fourth quarter of the Sugar Bowl against Alabama. Reading the eyes of Crimson Tide quarterback Blake Sims, Bell adjusted to the underthrown ball and intercepted it on his own goal line, robbing Alabama of a touchdown and preserving a 34-28 lead with under 10 minutes to go in the fourth quarter.Despite only collecting two interceptions in 2015, Bell played his way to earning Associated Press first-team All-American honors. Also grabbing a first-team All-Big Ten selection, the decorated safety was a stalwart in the OSU secondary, starting in all 13 games as a junior.Average-sized at 5-foot-11, 200 pounds, Bell was known for running downhill and being physical with opposing receivers in the secondary, as well as an instinct to make plays in the open field.Despite choosing not to run in the NFL combine due to a pulled hamstring, the Saints realized the talent that fell to them at the 61st pick and didn’t hesitate to pull the trigger on the former Buckeye.The Saints are scheduled to open up play against the Oakland Raiders on Sept. 11 at 1 p.m.
Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor underwent surgery on his right knee earlier this week, team spokeswoman Shelly Poe told The Lantern.Pryor played the second half of the season with a partial tear of his posterior cruciate ligament. He originally suggested that the injury occurred in his left knee, but the surgery was conducted on his right knee.“He had a routine arthroscopic procedure performed on his right knee,” Poe said. “Good news is everything checked out fine and he should make a quick recovery.”Pryor is expected to return to health in time for spring practices, which begin April 1.The sophomore threw for a career-high 266 yards in leading the Buckeyes to a 26-17 Rose Bowl victory over Oregon.
It’s a bye week for the Ohio State football team, but coach Luke Fickell still met with reporters on Tuesday. He discussed the team’s extra week to prepare before the Oct. 29 matchup with Wisconsin, the quarterback situation and the team’s lack of passing in OSU’s 17-7 victory over Illinois. New backup quarterback? Senior Joe Bauserman may have lost his job as OSU’s backup quarterback. Fickell hinted that redshirt sophomore Kenny Guiton may have passed Bauserman and would enter a game if anything happens to freshman starter Braxton Miller. “It just depends on what the situation is, but you know, I think Kenny (Guiton) probably has taken a few more reps last week than Joe (Bauserman),” Fickell said. Injury update Travis Howard appeared to have injured his ankle during the Illinois game on Saturday, but Fickell said he doesn’t expect him to miss any time. “Travis ran around out there today,” Fickell said. “He looked all right. I think he was just, you know, a little bit of a twisted ankle at the moment.” Fickell also said Miller doesn’t appear to be slowed by the ankle injury he suffered during OSU’s 34-27 loss at Nebraska. Bye week The Buckeyes don’t have a game this week, but are still practicing and preparing for the undefeated Wisconsin Badgers, who come to Columbus on Oct. 29 for a game that is scheduled to kickoff at 8 p.m. Fickell said the extra week to prepare is a definite advantage for his coaching staff, but even with the extra time, only so much can be done. “You can’t overdo it,” Fickell said. “You can’t be, you know, thinking you can reinvent the wheel in an extra week, but you got to get better at what you do. Yes, we know there’s a lot of things we can get better at.” Passing game OSU only completed one pass Saturday against Illinois, a 17-yard touchdown strike from Miller to senior tight end Jake Stoneburner. The lack of passing is something Fickell hopes to improve. “You got to attempt some more and you got to throw some more to get better at it,” Fickell said. “That’s not the only thing we have to work on, but we see ourselves getting better at it.” A reporter also asked about Miller seeming to struggle to throw a spiral at times, but Fickell said he has confidence in his quarterback. “He throws a good football,” Fickell said. “He really does and I think it comes down to patience and being relaxed and you know, getting more used to what you do. “He’s getting better and he’s going to continue to get better.”
OSU redshirt-sophomore quarterback Cardale Jones (12) hurdles a defender during a game Nov. 1 against Illinois at Ohio Stadium. OSU won, 55-14.Credit: Ben Jackson / For The LanternIf the Ohio State offense was looking past the Illinois Fighting Illini, and toward next week’s matchup with No. 7 Michigan State, it didn’t show.The Buckeye offense bounced back from a subpar performance against Penn State as it routed the Fighting Illini, 55-14, Saturday night in Ohio Stadium. Leading the way for the Buckeyes was a two-headed monster at quarterback as redshirt-freshman J.T. Barrett and redshirt-sophomore Cardale Jones combined for 334 of OSU’s 545 total offensive yards.Following the game, coach Urban Meyer said he was ultimately happy with how both quarterbacks played.“J.T. missed a couple of wide open guys early in that game. But I was really impressed by the way he came back and he made some very good plays in the second quarter,” Meyer said. “And Cardale, I think that was the first time we let him play. And he was in there with some really young linemen and still moved the ball. So I thought did he very well.”Barrett, who entered the game nursing a sprained MCL suffered against Penn State, said after the game that the injury didn’t affect the way he played against Illinois, despite missing multiple open throws.“The knee didn’t really give me any problems throughout the game,” he said. “That’s all on me. The receivers did a great job of getting open, I just have to do a better job of getting the ball to them.”Co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Tom Herman said following the game that while Barrett’s missed passes are a concern, he isn’t worried about the redshirt-freshman ironing out the mistakes.“He missed some open throws that we would have liked to have competed,” Herman said. “We will figure that part out, I don’t have any hesitation there. He is one of, if not the most accurate quarterback I have ever coached.”Barrett finished the day 15-24 passing for 167 yards and two scores, both to senior wide receiver Devin Smith.Smith’s two touchdowns on the night put him in a tie with former Buckeye wide receiver Santonio Holmes for third all-time on OSU’s career touchdown receptions list with 25.Smith attributed his relationship with Barrett on the field to his big game.“I have confidence in him and he has confidence in me,” Smith said after the game. “When you got that connection with QB and receiver, it’s night and day.”Jones came in to start the second half with OSU up 31-0 and picked up where Barrett left off, throwing for two scores of his own, the first a 27-yard touchdown toss to sophomore H-back Dontre Wilson.Barrett said after the game that he was not surprised Jones was able to come in and execute on offense in his absence.“You really don’t know what you are going to get (with Jones),” Barrett said. “He is hurdling people, he is dropping dimes out there to Dontre against man coverage. Cardale is a great player and he is just getting better.”A slight surprise for the Buckeye offense was freshman running back Curtis Samuel getting the start over sophomore running back Ezekiel Elliott, who had started the first seven games of the year for OSU.Meyer said it was ultimately OSU running backs coach Stan Drayton’s decision of to give Samuel his first career start.“Stan Drayton came to me in the middle of the week and said ‘I’d like to start Curtis Samuel this week, he’s doing everything right, and practices at an extremely high level,’” Meyer said. “And we still have great confidence in Zeke but we have two guys that can play.”Herman attributed some of Samuel’s development and rise to the starting lineup to Drayton’s coaching.“Coach Drayton does a hell of a job developing him and coaching him, but I think it was pretty apparent early in the spring that … we might have a real tailback here,” Herman said. “That certainly added to where we are at right now.”The Buckeyes are now faced with their biggest test of the season as they are scheduled to take on the No. 7 Spartans, the team that defeated OSU in the 2013 Big Ten Championship game and ended a 24-game winning streak. Meyer said following the win over Illinois that one factor will ultimately decide who comes out on top in East Lansing, Mich.“It’s all about the most prepared team. That’s what’s going to win this game,” he said. “This is a motivated team. And I think the most prepared team will win it.”The Buckeyes and Spartans are scheduled to face off Saturday. Kickoff is set for 8 p.m.
Ohio State senior forward Jae’Sean Tate (1) speaks with head coach Chris Holtmann in the first half in the game against Michigan on Dec. 4. Ohio State won 71-62. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Managing Editor for DesignThe Big Ten announced the men’s basketball conference schedule for the 2018-19 season on Tuesday. Big Ten play starts on Nov. 30, and concludes with the conference tournament from March 13-17.The Ohio State men’s basketball team opens its Big Ten schedule with Minnesota on Dec. 2, and continues on Dec. 5 at Illinois.Some highlights on the schedule include a Jan. 5 matchup at home against Michigan State and a Jan. 29 game at Michigan. Later in the season, the Buckeyes head to Bloomington to play Indiana on Feb. 10 and close the Big Ten season on March 10 at home against Wisconsin.Last season, Ohio State finished second in the Big Ten regular season standings, boasting a 15-3 record in the conference, and a 24-8 record overall. The Buckeyes lost in the quarterfinal of the Big Ten Tournament 69-68 to No. 7 Penn State, but still earned a five seed in the NCAA Tournament.Here is the list of the full Ohio State conference schedule:Dec. 2 vs. MinnesotaDec. 5 at IllinoisJan. 5 vs Michigan StateJan. 9 at RutgersJan. 12 at IowaJan. 18 vs MarylandJan. 23 vs PurdueJan. 26 at NebraskaJan. 29 at MichiganFeb. 2 vs RutgersFeb. 7 vs Penn StateFeb. 10 at IndianaFeb. 14 vs IllinoisFeb. 17 at Michigan StateFeb. 20 vs NorthwesternFeb. 23 at MarylandFeb. 26 vs IowaMarch 3 at PurdueMarch 6 at NorthwesternMarch 10 vs Wisconsin
His ex-wife was sorting through his possessions when she allegedly found the items and reported him to colleagues.PC Toms, from Romford, Essex, spoke only to confirm his name and to deny two counts of theft when he appeared at Southwark Crown Court on Wednesday.The court heard he allegedly took the Metropolitan Police issue office chair on New Year’s Day last year from the Safer Neighbourhoods base in Collier Row in Romford.He removed the throw rope embossed with the initials KD from the Havering Patrol Base last August, it was said. A police officer is facing trial for allegedly stealing equipment from work after his ex-wife told his colleagues she had found the items after their marriage ended. PC Christopher Toms, 38, took a police issue chair and a “life saver” throw rope before storing them in the summer house he used as his office, the court heard.After falling out with the mother of his one-year-old daughter, he moved out of the family home. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
Smith’s offence involved “prolonged bad driving”, albeit not all of it was causative of the accident. It has been illegal to use a handheld mobile phone while driving, or while stopped with the engine on, since December 2003.From March this year, the fixed penalty notice for using a handheld mobile phone while driving was increased to £200 and six penalty points. Increasing his sentence to 44 months, they said that the loss of Mrs Wattmore, who was greatly loved, had a “devastating” effect on her large family. He was reaching down to tune the radio just before his Skania car-transporter hit the back of a car in which 79-year-old Jeanette Wattmore was travelling back to Bristol from holiday in May last year.Mrs Wattmore died at the scene and her daughter and son-in-law were seriously injured in the accident on the A30 near Bodmin in Cornwall. Two other motorists were also injured.He had failed to notice traffic slowing down ahead because of road works and applied his brakes too late.Smith, who was of previous good character, stayed at the scene of the crash and helped a man in an overturned van.Lord Justice Fulford, Mrs Justice O’Farrell and Judge Farrer heard that he had shown great remorse and was himself having treatment for post traumatic stress disorder. A texting lorry driver who was reaching down to tune his radio when he killed a pensioner has had his sentence increased after judges found it was unduly lenient.Former soldier Joseph David Smith had been using his mobile phone to send and receive messages, pay a loan, search the internet and visit a gambling site in the run-up to the crash. The last message was sent 43 seconds before the crash.On Tuesday his 32-month prison term was increased by a year. Three judges at the Court of Appeal in London agreed with the Attorney General that the sentence passed on Smith at Truro Crown Court in February was unduly lenient.Smith, 30, of Gillingham, Kent, who served in Iraq and Afghanistan with the Royal Engineers during 10 years in the Army, had pleaded guilty to causing death by dangerous driving. Jeanette Wattmore with her daughter Susan West, granddaughter Anglea, great granddaughter Crystal and great-great granddaughter IslaCredit:SWNS Jeanette Wattmore pictured with son-in-law Lesley WestCredit:SWNS Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.