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Friday, February 12, 2016

Blog

Tom and Gisele Building a Nice Little Home on West Coast

In case you couldn’t have predicted, that post title is what we like to call sarcasm.  Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen are pooling their millions and setting up shop on the West Coast, in Brentwood, CA.  The married couple’s new home, which is estimated in the $20 million price range — not including the $11 million they paid for the lot — is going to be a 22,000 foot mansion (understatement) with 8 bedrooms, a covered bridge, six-car garage, and lagoon-shaped swimming pool.  Take a look at some of the pictures of Tom Brady and Gisele’s mansion, courtesy of New York Daily News.

Source:
Patriots star Tom Brady, supermodel wife Gisele Bundchen build $20M dream home in Brentwood, Calif. [NY Daily News]

Marian Hossa Avoids Suspension for Hit

It was a wild finish in Game 5 of the Blackhawks/Predators series on Saturday. Down 4-3 in the final few minutes, Chicago pulled its goalie but lost its man advantage when Marian Hossa was sent to the box for pushing Dan Hamhuis into the boards. The play was reminiscent of Alex Ovechkin’s push of Brian Campbell that LBS writer Erin Redmond termed dirty. I didn’t think there was anything wrong with Ovechkin’s hit and the result of Campbell’s play confirms my initial belief — Hossa was called for a five minute major for boarding.

NHL disciplinarian Colin Campbell decided no suspension was necessary for Hossa despite giving Alex Ovechkin a two-game suspension based on the “repeat offender” concept. Going back to the crazy finish in Chicago, Hossa’s penalty took away the Blackhawks’ man advantage when they pulled their goalie. Despite playing five-on-five hockey, Patrick Kane put in a rebound to tie the game at 4 with 13.6 seconds left. Just over four minutes into overtime, Hossa came out of the penalty box and poked a deflected puck into the net for the game-winner making it 3-2 Chicago in the series. Here’s the infamous video of Marian Hossa’s hit on Dan Hamhuis to see for yourself:

Sources:
Hawks’ Hossa avoids NHL Suspension [AP/Sporting News]

Shaq Got Some Fresh New Tattoos

Shaq missed the last six weeks of the regular season after having surgery on his injured thumb. While Shaq was out we heard how he was working hard to get into shape and that he lost 20 pounds. That seems accurate because Shaq has looked pretty good since rejoining the Cavaliers for their playoff series against the Bulls. I also noticed that something else had changed with Shaq’s appearance: he seemed to have plenty more work done on his arms and chest. I don’t know how many of Shaq’s tattoos were there at the beginning of the season, but based on some of these pictures it looks like Shaq got plenty more ink, taking a page from teammates LeBron James and Mo Williams:

As you can tell, it looks like he got a second Superman tattoo, the latest on his right arm to go along with the original “Man of Steel” S on the left arm. You can also see Shaq’s fraternity tattoo on the backside of his left arm. It’s for his fraternity, Omega Psi Phi. Here’s how Shaq’s arms used to look, courtesy of Vanishing Tattoo:

As you can see, Shaq sure has added on over the years, most recently during his stay in Cleveland.

No Shortage of Confidence for Thunder

It’s no secret that the Thunder have enough talent to match up with the Lakers — especially when Kobe Bryant manages to score only 12 points on 5-of-10 from the floor.  My gut feeling is that the Lakers will still win the series, but if the Thunder do somehow pull off the upset, it will be simply because they have shown that they aren’t afraid of the defending world champions.  Well, that and the fact that Kevin Durant could be the MVP of the league — just ask Dwight Howard.

Oklahoma City dominated the Lakers on Saturday, with Durant and Russell Westbrook — possibly the best young tandem in the NBA — leading the way with a combined 40 points.  Having won both of their home games to even the series at 2-2, the Thunder have now put a tremendous amount of pressure on Los Angeles to take care of business at home in Game 5.  Otherwise, they’ll put themselves in a position where the Thunder can return home leading the series 3-2 with a chance to clinch in front of what has been an electrifying crowd at the Ford Center.

Even Ron Artest — arguably the best man-to-man defender in the league — is having trouble containing Kevin Durant, as evidenced by the way he blew by him on Saturday to stuff home a dunk that sent the Ford Center into a frenzy.  The Zen Master may have to try a bit harder to rattle the Thunder’s star forward if he wants to avoid a repeat of the 29-point 19-rebound performance Durant dropped on his squad on Friday night.

The Lakers are probably still the better team overall.  They’re the No. 1 seed for a reason.  They’ve been in this situation many times before.  They’re certainly more experienced and seasoned when it comes to playoff basketball.  If they end up unable to advance, it will be due in large part to the fact that they’ve run into the hungriest team in the NBA.

Sources:
Thunder even series with 110-89 win over Lakers [Yahoo! Sports]
Loud and Proud: Fans Bring the Thunder in Oklahoma City [Fanhouse]
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Scott Sicko Goes Undrafted, Quits Football Despite Contract Offers

Of all the surprises to come out of the NFL draft weekend, what happened with New Hampshire tight end Scott Sicko was the most shocking. I don’t recall ever seeing a story like this one. With the draft capped at seven rounds, several talented football players go undrafted. Even though no team selects them in the draft, they’re able to sign with any team they choose as an undrafted free agent immediately following the draft (as long as there’s mutual interest). New Hampshire tight end Scott Sicko went undrafted but the Jaguars, Cowboys, and Jets all tried to sign him. Which team did he choose? None of them. Pro Football Talk shared this incredible story Saturday night via the Albany Times-Union:

Not getting drafted, [Sicko] decided, provided a new clarity, a different answer to the question of whether he wanted to get started on his life after football.

“If I were to be drafted I would have had more confidence of a much longer career in the NFL,” Sicko said. “I have to look at my life and decide what will make me the happiest. And the thing that will make me the happiest now and in the long run is to pursue my education.”

After getting his New Hampshire degree this May, Sicko plans to get a post-graduate degree or two in history, and become a history teacher or professor. And, yes, he knows he could have put off his education.

There you have it — Sicko told his agent to tell teams that called “thanks but no thanks” to their offers. He’s hanging up the cleats for grad school. Here’s the deal: if Sicko’s dream is to become a history teacher, then I can’t argue with him. But if he ever had dreams of playing in the NFL, just because he wasn’t drafted doesn’t mean he wouldn’t be able to live his dream. Antonio Gates is one of the best tight ends in the NFL and he went undrafted. Steelers linebacker and Defensive Player of the Year in 2008 was undrafted. Same with Kurt Warner, West Welker, London Fletcher, Herm Edwards, Priest Holmes, Tony Romo, and recently selected Hall of Famer John Randle. I’m not saying it would have been easy for Sicko to make it in the NFL but the reality is he wasn’t that far off as an undrafted free agent. I hope he doesn’t regret his choice.

Sources:
In a stunner, Scott Sicko says no thanks to NFL (Updated) [Albany Times-Union]
Player goes undrafted, says no thanks to teams [Pro Football Talk]

Raiders Al Davis Gets His Combine Studs Bruce Campbell, Jacoby Ford

The Oakland Raiders shocked the football world by making what seemed to be very logical picks on the first two days of the draft. With their first-round pick, they selected Alabama linebacker Rolando McClain eighth overall. With their second-round pick, they chose Texas defensive tackle Lamarr Houston. Both moves seemed to indicate a desire by the Raiders to shore up their run defense because they also traded away LB Kirk Morrison, a player owner Al Davis seemed to blame for their shoddy run-stopping.

In addition to their solid draft picks the first two days, the Raiders acquired quarterback Jason Campbell from the Redskins. On a roster with JaMarcus Russell, Bruce Gradkowski, Kyle Boller, and Charlie Frye as the options at QB, Campbell seems like the best option. While making some strong moves that should improve the Raiders in the future, you knew they couldn’t go the entire draft without making some typical Al Davis selections.

Much like they did last year by taking bust Darrius Heyward-Bey 7th overall, the Raiders went with back-to-back combine speedsters in the 4th round. With pick number 106, the Raiders chose Maryland offensive tackle Bruce Campbell. Campbell created a buzz at the combine by running a 4.85 40-yard dash, posting 34 reps of 225lbs on the bench press, and measuring out with the longest arms of any tackle at 36 inches. People joked he would be a lock to go to Oakland and they were right, only the Raiders took Campbell at a reasonable spot in the fourth round, not the first.

Two picks after drafting Campbell, the Raiders selected Clemson WR Jacoby Ford. Ford was another combine stud, running the fastest 40 time of any player, a 4.28. Ford’s small at 5’8″ and 180lbs and he didn’t produce huge numbers at Clemson, but he is a speedster. Both Campbell and Ford were typical Al Davis, speed/athletic player picks. The good news for Raiders fans is at least Davis took them in the fourth-round where it’s a lower risk. Translation, they didn’t embarrass themselves as much as we thought they would.

Manu Ginobili’s Nose Busted Up by Dirk Nowitzki’s Elbow

Spurs guard Manu Ginobili was caught with a flailing elbow by Dirk Nowitzki during the third quarter of Friday night’s playoff game. Dirk was driving to the basket from the corner when Ginobili tried to reach for a steal. Because Manu was leaning in, his nose got hit by Dirk’s elbow resulting in this ugly picture. Here’s a before and after of Manu’s nose courtesy of ESPN:


As you can see, the upper part of Ginobili’s nose had shifted to his left and it seemed to be clearly broken. Manu also had massive bleeding from the inside of the nose, yet he still managed to return after missing about five minutes in the third quarter. I don’t know if Ginobili will be wearing a mask for Game 4, but I’m guessing this will be a minor concern moving forward in the series. Here are a few more pics of Manu Ginobili’s broken nose:

Photo Credit: Getty Images

UPDATE: Ginobili did indeed break his nose in the game, X-rays later confirmed. He’ll also have a CT scan at which time the Spurs will have more info on his status. What a baller.

Maurkice Pouncey Shares Kiss on Lips with Brother

Pittsburgh, your newest center kissing his brother [Busted Coverage]

Even football genius Jimmy Johnson had draft screwups [You Been Blinded]

Are we going to see losing teams in bowl games now? [The Wiz of Odds]

New BCS automatic bid might not help Mountain West [The Sporting Blog]

MLB is exploring the chance of testing for HGH [Sportress of Blogitude]

Pittsburgh zoo now disrespecting Ben Roethlisberger [The Last Angry Fan]

Breaking down Tiger Woods’ latest blog post [Out of Bounds]

The controversial new Michigan State uniforms [Sparty and Friends]

Bengals Fans Will Enjoy Their New Prick

Just like the Bengals to take a jackass in the draft, right? Selecting guys with character problems seems to be their forte, that’s why I was surprised they elected for Oklahoma tight end Jermaine Gresham over Dez Bryant. But apparently Cincinnati broadcaster Curtis Fuller doesn’t think so highly of Gresham. Check out this blooper uncovered by Sports by Brooks:

I’m sure it was just an honest mistake but it was a bad one. Or perhaps a Freudian slip given Cincinnati’s history?

Sources:
Cincy TV Sports Anchor’s Pointed Draft Coverage [Sports by Brooks]

Lawrence Taylor Got Hammered on His Draft Day

30 years ago, the NFL Draft wasn’t nearly as popular as it is now. Now, it spans three days and has become almost a holiday for football fans. But back in 1981, there weren’t green rooms and 24/7 TV coverage of the event, so when North Carolina linebacker Lawrence Taylor was a top prospect, it’s not like he went to NYC for the special day. He told SI how he spent his time instead and it’s typical LT:

I’m sure that’s exactly what the Giants wanted to hear when they made LT their franchise player on defense. Obviously the pick couldn’t have been better for the Giants, but damn, is that vintage LT or what? 41 beers??? My goodness.

Sources:
LT’s Draft Memory: 41 Beers [SI Hot Clicks]

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