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Here’s how LeBron James’ beef with Lance Stephenson began

The Cleveland Cavaliers and Indiana Pacers will meet in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs, which means one thing and one thing only:

LeBron James vs. Lance Stephenson: The Next Chapter.

It wasn’t too long ago that the Cavaliers actually worked Stephenson out as a prospect to join the team midseason. James had no qualms with the team potentially signing a past enemy.

“I got a history with Lance, too, obviously,” he said, according to ESPN. “I just want to win, man. That’s all that matters to me. I got no personal problems with nobody.”

“C.J. took it upon himself,” George said during his post-game press conference. “I’m confident in all my guys taking shots, that’s not the issue. But in that situation like that, I’ve gotta get that.”

George gave the ball up after LeBron James came with a double team at the top of the three-point line.

But there were at least four seconds remaining after he made that pass. He even ran at Miles calling for the ball, but Miles dribbled in the opposite direction before pump-faking and missing a look at a game-winning buzzer beater.

PG said he spoke to Miles and told him he needs to take that last shot, according to Scott Sargent at Waiting For Next Year. George gave the ball up to get it back.

“I was asking for it,” George said. “I was trying to give it up to force them to scramble to the open man so I could get it back. At that time, it’s not enough seconds on the clock for them to try to double team again.”
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Ex-Lions WR Titus Young reportedly sentenced to 4 years in prison

The former Lions wide receiver has been sentenced to four years in prison after pleading no contest to assault stemming from a 2016 incident, TMZ Sports reported.

Young was arrested in connection with a fight involving his neighbor last January in Los Angeles and was charged with felony battery with serious bodily injury.

He had been serving five years’ probation after he pleaded no contest to felony battery in April 2015 that stemmed from a separate incident nine months earlier in which Young attacked his then-attorney and broke the man’s nose. The sentence also included one year in jail, but Young was given credit for time served and released.
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Young, 27, was selected by Detroit in the second round of the 2011 NFL Draft but got cut after two seasons following multiple disciplinary incidents. Following his release, the troubled wideout was arrested three times in one week in May 2013 and racked up 11 different charges.

Rodgers father, Ed Rodgers, told the New York Times earlier this year that the quarterback hadn’t spoken to family members since he started dating Munn in 2014.

Authentic Youth Cody Zeller Jersey Fame can change things, Ed Rodgers said. Bobos Rams return their starting quarterback, all three primary backs, their top two receiving targets, an all-conference center, three of their top four defensive linemen, nearly every linebacker, and nearly every defensive back.

Nikita Zaitsev returns to Leafs in Game 3 against Capitals

Mens Carson Tinker Jersey Zaitsev took a hard but clean hit from Nick Foligno of the Columbus Blue Jackets in Toronto’s regular-season finale April 9 and has been out since. He skated for a third straight day Monday morning, and Leafs head coach Mike Babcock confirmed the Russian blueliner would be back for Game 3 against the Washington Capitals. The series is tied 1-1.

Geno Smith Womens Jersey The timing couldn’t be better after the Leafs lost veteran defenseman Roman Polak in Game 2. He suffered a leg injury and is done for the playoffs.

Zaitsev averaged 22:01 minutes per game during the regular season, second only to Morgan Rielly on the Leafs.
The sport’s four majors and the Players Championship have been in a sort of payout arms race for the last few years, raising their financials in an effort to outduel one another in prestige. The Masters’ $11 million purse is the largest in the history of at least this event. The same goes for the $1.9 million payout for first place.

Entering the Masters, the leader in PGA Tour money this year was world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, who’s not playing in the Masters because of a back injury.

2017 college football spring practice schedule: Start dates and spring games

Oh, it’s time to go sit in some midday sun in early spring and pretend like the football we’re watching is actually the real thing. Yes, that’s right: It’s spring practice.

Elite Kids Marcus Gilchrist Jersey Some schools, like Duke, start spring ball ridiculously early, in the beginning of February. Others opt for later in the calendar, like Oregon, which doesn’t start things off until late March.

Spring practice start and end dates for most of the FBS are below, and we’ll maintain this table as more dates roll in. For the vast majority of programs, the final day of spring practice is the team’s “spring game,” but a few programs don’t hold them, and their structures can vary. This table includes teams’ last spring practice dates:

Matt Ryan has been exceptional throughout much of his time in Atlanta. His last four games, however, have been among the worst in his career. Ryan had three interceptions on the season going into the matchup against the Cardinals in Arizona, and since that time he has thrown nine interceptions total against Arizona, Carolina and Tampa Bay.
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Matt Ryan, in the grand scheme, is an excellent quarterback. Over the last four games in particular, however, Ryan is part of the problem. Ryan’s struggles aren’t occurring in a vacuum. Poor performances along the offensive line have dramatically impacted Ryan’s game, forcing him to develop a quicker release. Poor pass protection has also limited the vertical passing game. Ryan does not have enough time in the pocket for his receivers to run deep routes.

J.R. Ella of Canal Street Chronicles notes that the Saints have a strong defense for the first time in a long time, which will certainly be an issue for the hobbled Falcons:

20 things you may have forgotten from Tiger Woods’ iconic 1997 Masters win

I was in elementary school when Tiger Woods won the Masters in 1997. It was the moment I became hooked on golf. Tiger was a bad ass, which was a weird thing to say about a golfer when you’re a young kid. He was just as cool as other sports heroes like Tory Aikman and Emmitt Smith. He had a style that I didn’t think was allowed in golf. As a result of those four days in Augusta in 1997, I’ve played the game ever since. Each day I become more and more addicted to it and that’s all due to that first Masters win for Tiger. And if you ask many of the guys on Tour today, they will tell a similar story.

Ohio State’s offense was good at getting the ball to hybrid back Samuel, who had 194 total touches for 1,636 yards and 15 TDs. It was less effective at involving receivers, and four of Noah Brown’s seven TDs came in a single game against Oklahoma.

Indiana put three different receivers over the 90-target mark while still feeding lead back Devine Redding. The smaller program didn’t have a better offense than Ohio State’s group of blue-chips, but it did get a lot of actors involved.

Wilson’s 2008 Sooners were an example of how this can play out with a more talented cast. Their two main backs, Chris Brown and DeMarco Murray, each went for over 1,000 rushing yards while four different receivers caught at least 40 balls and had more than 680 receiving yards.

Wilson balances the run and the pass from the same formation.

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Lexi Thompson rules controversy ‘embarrassing,’ says LPGA commisioner

With the contretemps that Lexi Thompson’s rules controversy sparked on Sunday at the ANA Inspiration showing no signs of abating, it was no surprise that Masters contender Rickie Fowler added his objection to professional golf allowing TV viewers to determine the outcomes of tournaments.

LPGA Tour commissioner Mike Whan also shared his frustrations with how Thompson’s rules breach, which cost her four shots down the stretch of a heartbreaking playoff loss to So Yeon Ryu in last week’s first major of the season, came down.
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“It’s embarrassing,” Whan said Tuesday on Matt Adams’ Fairways of Life Sirius XM PGA Tour radio about the incident that had even Tiger Woods chiming in about the unfairness of how the penalty issue unfolded. “It’s one of those situations where the penalty does not match the crime.”
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That’s worse news for teams like the Texans and Broncos — two franchises with dominant defenses who were only a steady quarterback away from a potential title run. Romo would have been a plug-and-play option who instantly elevated their anemic offenses. His veteran status would have also allowed those franchises to develop young quarterbacks under his guidance, whether it was a player already on the roster (Denver’s Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch) or someone selected in April’s draft (whoever Houston picks to extinguish the dumpster fire historically known as their QB depth chart).

Dashon Goldson suspended for helmet-to-helmet hit

Tampa Bay Buccaneers safety Dashon Goldson has been suspended for one game for violating the league’s policy on player safety, according to Ian Rapoport.

Goldson’s suspension comes for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Roddy White. It was the second such hit of the season for the safety. In Week 2, Goldson was suspended one game for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Saints running back Darren Sproles, but won an appeal to have it reduced to a $100,000 fine that allowed him to continue playing.
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The Buccaneers are on a two-game win streak, and can’t afford to be without Goldson moving forward. He has been vital to the team’s secondary, totaling 50 tackles, one interception and one forced fumble. If he fails his appeal the defense will turn to Kelcie McCray, who has six tackles in five games this season.

But from a projections standpoint, the Rockets are far and away the safest bet in the MAC.
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The Rockets鈥?projected S&P+ rating is 5.4 points ahead of WMU鈥檚 and at least 9.7 points ahead of anybody else鈥檚. Aside from the trip to Miami on September 23, they are given at least a 68 percent chance of winning each of their other 11 games. That doesn鈥檛 mean they鈥檒l win them all, but they are projected to win 6.0 games in conference play and 8.7 overall; WMU is the only other MAC team over 4.9 conference or 6.9 overall, and the Broncos are dealing with a coaching change that might dampen those projections.

Toledo begins as the runaway favorite. But per S&P+, the Rockets finished as the best team in the conference in 2011, 2017, and 2017, too. That didn鈥檛 result in winning the conference. Luck and untimely mistakes always seem to conspire against them.

Breaking down the Carolina Panthers defense

The Carolina Panthers are riding a four-game win streak and have quietly become one of the best teams in the NFL. This week, they’ll face off against a red-hot 49ers team, themselves winners of their last five.

It’s a strength-on-strength bout between two physical, punch-you-in-the-mouth run teams with young, electric and mobile quarterbacks and elite front sevens on defense. The Niners, for their part, aren’t really surprising anyone with their dominance, but the Panthers’ recent run hasn’t really had much attention.

The Panthers’ defense, in particular, has been one of the league’s best by any measure. Carolina, on the year, is giving up 13.2 points per game, second only in the NFL to the Kansas City Chiefs. They are one of three teams to have held opponents to an average of less than 300 yards per game thus far this season (299.9). They are ninth in the NFL in opponent yards per play (5.0), have forced 12 fumbles (10th in NFL), have 23 sacks, (T-13th in the NFL) and have 12 interceptions (T-third in NFL). Carolina holds opposing teams to an average of 79.1 yards rushing per game (second in NFL) and 3.7 yards per rush (T-sixth in NFL), and have only given up two rushing touchdowns on the year (T-second).

Tanking For Teddy, Bad for Boyd, or any other cute phrase that endorses going in the tank. I’m not going to apologize for wanting my football team to win. Ever. I’m never going to want them to go 1-15, or 2-14, and secure the first pick in the draft. Ever. I wait far too long for football season to get here, and I don’t want to watch 15 shit bombs with my father. Granted, he’s a funny and sarcastic dude when the Vikes play like crap, but we have a lot more fun when they’re winning. I’ll take as many wins as I can, and let the chips fall where they may. Why? because no one really knows how good Teddy Bridgewater, Tajh Boyd, or anyone else is going to be.1

The Giants turned it over three times, but the Raiders couldn’t hold onto their second half lead.

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The New York Giants started the season 0-6 mostly due to being the worst team in the NFL in terms of turnovers. That didn’t change on Sunday against the Raiders, with the Giants turning it over on the opening kickoff and finding themselves down 7-0 less than a minute into the game, but New York managed to comeback and beat Oakland, 24-20.

That’s reflected in the odds, as well. The Saints opened as 6.5-point favorites on the books, but the line has widened in their favor, with some books having them favored by as much as 7.5 points, according to OddsShark. The Superdome home-field advantage certainly plays a factor, but the Saints have definitely looked like the better team thus far this season.

The over/under for the matchup opened at 53 points and it’s staying around that. That total has gone under in 11 of Dallas’ last 15 games on the road, and over in four of New Orleans’ last five games. It could be messy and high scoring, as the Saints boast the No. 3 passing offense while the Cowboys hold the No. 31 passing defense.

That includes a 27-24 loss to the Arizona Cardinals in Week 10, in which Reed played a paltry 13 defensive snaps — just 18 percent of the team’s defensive plays. Reed said that the Texans were “outplayed and outcoached” in that game, which the team can’t be pleased with.

Reed was one of the team’s primary offseason additions. After winning a Super Bowl with the Baltimore Ravens in 2017, Reed signed a three-year, $15 million deal after another offseason in which many questioned whether or not he would be hanging up the cleats for good.

Game Youth Tajae Sharpe Jersey After 632 tackles and 61 interceptions over his career, he doesn’t have a whole lot left to prove, even if he did struggle this season. He had just 20 tackles with no picks in seven games this season. Keo, his replacement, has 28 tackles and an interception in nine games played.

Steven Stamkos says he won’t return until knee is ‘100 percent’

BOSTON — Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos said he won’t return to the lineup until he’s 100 percent.

Authentic Womens Kyle Brodziak Jersey The 27-year-old forward has been sidelined since having surgery on Nov. 17 to repair a lateral meniscus tear in his right knee. He’s been practicing with the team and described his progress as slow, but he feels he’s getting closer.

When I’m 100 percent, I’ll be back, Stamkos said after the team’s morning skate Thursday at TD Garden. Obviously, you hope that’s sooner than later, but I have no control of the healing that goes on in the process.

Authentic Womens Matt Harrison Jersey Lattimore’s hamstrings are a touchy subject; injuries effectively derailed two years of his career with the Buckeyes. The talented defensive back only wound up starting one complete season in college thanks to a tear in his left hamstring that forced him to miss the 2014 campaign and a nagging problem in his right one that kept him on the shelf for much of the 2015 campaign.

After changing his stretching routine and incorporating more yoga into his workouts, a fully healthy Lattimore emerged as a game-changing force in the Ohio State secondary, intercepting four passes, breaking up nine more and adding 41 tackles. He’s currently listed as the No. 4 overall prospect on ESPN analyst Mel Kiper’s latest Big Board.

Before his injury at the combine, Lattimore was timed at 4.36 seconds in the 40-yard dash and posted a vertical jump of 38.5 inches and a broad jump of 11 feet. Despite the clean bill of health, Lattimore limited his workout to individual drills Thursday in front of the nine head coaches, seven general managers and 122 total NFL representatives at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.