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Absent Nathan Eovaldi gets biggest cheers at Red Sox video premiere

Free agent Nathan Eovaldi was the star of the Red Sox 2018 World Series highlight video, and he didn’t even have to attend the red carpet premiere.

The erstwhile starter, who pitched six innings in relief in the team’s 18-inning, Game 3 loss, received a huge cheer whenever his name was mentioned by the dignitaries who shared the stage with the four World Series trophies the team has won since 2004. President of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski was cheerfully heckled with shouts of “Bring him back!”cheap nfl jerseys china nike

Acquired at midseason to bolster the Red Sox rotation, Eovaldi was 3-3 with a 3.33 ERA down the stretch for Boston. He made just one start in the playoffs before helping out the battered bullpen in the Game 5 clincher of the AL Division Series against Houston.6

He pitched one inning of relief in each of the first two games of the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. And then, entering Game 3 in the 12th inning, he went the rest of the way to take the load off the rest of the Red Sox pitching staff.

Eovaldi is one of the few free agents from the championship team, giving the 108-win AL East champions a chance to repeat with virtually the same roster. World Series MVP Steve Pearce has already re-signed; Game 5 winner David Price opted in to the last four years of the contract he signed before the 2016 season; the team exercised its option on ace Chris Sale.

“We did it with these guys last year. Why can’t we do it this year?” utilityman Brock Holt said after walking the red carpet. “We’re going to try to win 108 games again. I don’t know if we’re going to.”

Holt said the video premiere was an opportunity to look back at the team’s successes before turning their attention to spring training and their attempt to win back-to-back.nike nfl jerseys cheap china

“You don’t want to turn the page, but you have to,” he said. “Now it’s like, `Hey, we won the World Series. Let’s do it again.’ That’s hard to do.”

Richard Sherman finding his footing in first year with 49ers

Earlier this month, San Francisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman passed the one-year mark since suffering the devastating Achilles tendon injury that ended his 2017 season early.

Much has changed for Sherman in that year: The Seattle Seahawks released him, the 49ers signed him, he recovered from the Achilles injury, he had a couple of minor injury setbacks and he’s managed to fight through others. He’s also hit a variety of benchmarks in his return from injury,cheap nfl nike jerseys free shipping but validation of a return to form might have come in its biggest dose when Sherman was able to play well during a Week 8 game against the Arizona Cardinals, then turn around and play four days later against the Oakland Raiders.

“It was really meaningful for me,” Sherman said. “I wanted to do it for the team. Obviously, I’m a competitor, I want to play every game if I can and thankfully the trainers and doctors and everything were able to help me get to where I needed to get to play, so I was excited about it.”6

Given some time to rest after that victory against the Raiders, the 30-year-old Sherman said his legs “felt as good as they’ve ever felt,” and coach Kyle Shanahan and defensive coordinator Robert Saleh noticed an uptick in his practice performance to go along with it.

“I’m sure it was a great confidence boost for him, too,” Saleh said. “Even as much as he’s done in his career, he could always use a confidence booster. But, for Sherm to be able to stack days up and be able to practice and play games consecutively like that, I’m sure it was a big deal for him.”

On Sunday, Sherman will return to Seattle for the first time in a different uniform, that of his former adversary Niners, no less. As he makes that return, he does so as a team captain for the first time in his career and an integral part in a 49ers defense that is going through more than its share of growing pains.

Sherman, by his own account, has experienced his share of highs and lows this season.cheap nfl jerseys from china nike

“It’s been so-so,” Sherman said. “It’s been ups and downs. I’ve had good games where I’ve felt good and been in real control and then other games where I’ve had to just kind of get through it. So as my leg and body progresses, I think I’m going to be feeling better.”

How Plaxico Burress’ shooting may have cost the Giants a title

It has been 10 years, but a conversation about the 2008 New York Giants still gets former All-Pro guard Chris Snee irritated. The memories of how it all unfolded — culminating with the NFC’s top seed losing to the rival Philadelphia Eagles in the divisional round of the playoffs — remains too raw.

It might always be that way. Snee doesn’t talk about it with his father-in-law — former Giants coach Tom Coughlin — because he believes they are both too competitive. It would be the equivalent of ripping a Band-Aid off a still-raw blister.

That 2008 season is the one that got away. It’s also the one where, a decade ago this week, wide receiver Plaxico Burress shot himself in the leg at a Manhattan club.cheap wholesale nike nfl jerseys

“Honestly, it’s still one that haunts me,” Snee said of that ill-fated season, during a recent phone conversation with ESPN. “I don’t think there was a team that could beat us. I really don’t.”

The Giants had beaten the four teams that went on to reach championship weekend (Eagles, Cardinals, Ravens and Steelers) in a five-week stretch earlier in the season. Three of those four wins were on the road.5

They had raced out to a 10-1 record before the Burress incident derailed their season.

“We were the best team in the NFL at the time of the shooting,” Coughlin has said in recent years.

Snee thought that was the best Giants team of that era, even though they had won a Super Bowl the previous year and another four years later. Quarterback Eli Manning said he probably agreed.

“We could hang with anyone and were rolling,” Manning said. “And then obviously lost Plaxico.”

The Giants lost four of their next six games, including 23-11 in the playoffs at Giants Stadium. They failed to score 20 points in each of the four losses. Yet there doesn’t seem to be much ill will or hard feelings toward Burress, even though all seem to agree the shooting was the turning point.cheap nfl nike jerseys free shipping

Maybe it’s because Burress got the worst of it all. He sustained a gunshot wound to his leg and served nearly two years in prison for attempted criminal possession of a weapon. The perfect storm of a public figure violating New York’s stringent gun laws made for a high-profile case that even had the mayor pushing for strict prosecution. The self-inflicted wounds turned Burress’ life upside down and ended his Giants career. After the incident. he caught a total of 48 passes with the Jets (2011) and Steelers (2012).

His teammates aren’t blaming their demise on the receiver, who had caught the game-winning touchdown to beat the undefeated New England Patriots in the Super Bowl nine months earlier.

Lakers unable to complete comeback, but James will value great shots

Anyone that has paid attention to LeBron James’ career — whether he was dishing to Donyell Marshall when he was with the Cleveland Cavaliers, or Udonis Haslem when he was with the Miami Heat — should not have been surprised Sunday when, with less than 20 seconds left and the Los Angeles Lakers down by two, James passed it to Kentavious Caldwell-Pope for an open 3-pointer to try to win it.

“I always got a chance at a shot,” James said of his positioning — two feet in the paint with seemingly an angle to sneak a layup by Nikola Vucevic — cheap nfl jerseys china nike when he chose to kick it out to Caldwell-Pope.

The results, of course, were a miss by his less-talented teammate and a 108-104 loss for the Lakers, their second to the middling Orlando Magic in little more than a week.5

This is how James approaches the game. This shouldn’t be a newsflash. To him, a player taking a good shot (no matter how great he is) isn’t as valuable as any player (no matter what his ability is) taking a great shot.

It did not matter that Caldwell-Pope was 1-for-5 in the game at the time — including a missed 3 from nearly the same spot on the court just about a minute earlier.

The “Is He More Michael or Magic?” debate is tired at this point. James will execute how he sees fit. And so, similarly, those taking issue with James taking a potential go-ahead 3 of his own on a step-back move prior to that Caldwell-Pope possession — wishing he would have put the ball on the floor against Aaron Gordon, who was saddled with five fouls and guarding him on the perimeter — there’s no video game controller that will allow fans to make James do what they want.nike nfl jerseys cheap china

End-of-game situations are, by their nature, consequential. It is understandable that they are scrutinized and picked apart more than other sequences in the game. And seeing James buck his recent trend of struggling with clutch free throws when he went 2-for-2 from the line to tie it 104-104 with 2:24 remaining only served to make the Lakers going scoreless from there that much more disappointing. That’s understandable too.

Journeyman Boateng the unlikely ‘Prince’ in Sassuolo’s Serie A fairy tale

Leave Piazza Piccola on the via Giuseppe Mazzini side and visitors to Sassuolo have two options. They can go left and view Palazzo Ducale, the duke’s palace, with its remarkable frescos and a fishpond that has to be seen to be believed. Or turn right for the Ezio Ricci stadium and see a “Prince” instead.cheap nfl jerseys china nike

A prince who would be king, judging by the title of the rap video Kevin-Prince Boateng dropped on Aug.16, the night before the Serie A season began. The video has been watched 1.7 million times in the two months it has been on YouTube; if every view is unique that’s 42-and-a-half times the population of Sassuolo!

“Of course I’m crazy happy about it, that people like it and so many people viewed it,” Boateng says, “and I want to thank the fans because it’s not normal. It’s just the way I am. I just want to do stuff. I do it and I don’t care if it goes bad or good. I just want to do it for myself because I want to look back one day and say: Yeah, I did that. I did that and I don’t regret it.”5

(All that is left to do now is organise a rap battle between “PRIN$$ Boateng” and Atalanta goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini — AKA “Gollorius” — before Sassuolo play the Bergamaschi at the end of December.)

There is little mystery, then, as to who sets the playlist in the Sassuolo dressing room: “I do,” Boateng says with a proud nod. His music taste is varied and not just limited to rap.

“My mum and dad used to listen to a lot of R&B and soul, so this was the way I grew up,” he says. “Hip-hop of course. But then as I grew older I started listening to everything. It comes with the moment. Sometimes I wake up and I’m a little bit grumpy and I listen to soul. Sometimes I wake up and I need some spirit so I listen to rock and roll. It depends on the mood I’m in.”

Meanwhile, no one at Sassuolo is ever in the right frame of mind for the noise blaring out of the car or headphones of goalkeeper Andrea Consigli.nike nfl jerseys cheap china

“He listens to hard techno music,” Boateng jokes. “You have to love it. We’re 25 or 26 players and it’s just him. He loves it, so he will never put music on in the dressing room.”

Eagles’ win over the Giants sets up key MNF game with Redskins

The Philadelphia Eagles are deeply flawed, but then, so is the NFC East. So they’ve got a shot.

The defending champs still have life thanks to a 25-22 come-from-behind win over the New York Giants on Sunday.

It sets up a Monday Night Football game against the Washington Redskins that, believe it or not, could pull Philadelphia (5-6) into a first-place division tie with Washington (6-5) and the Dallas Cowboys (6-5). Dallas plays the Saints next week.

“This was a big game for us, obviously, in terms of divisional standings and all that fun stuff,” quarterback Carson Wentz said, but, really mentally, to show the resilience that we did to go down early the way we did and then battle back just built a lot of confidence for all three phases of this game. To come from behind and get it done today, I think that will speak volumes about our confidence going forward.”nfl nike jerseys for cheap

It feels like the Eagles should be dead and buried. It was Groundhog Day at Lincoln Financial Field as the offense failed to score in the first quarter for the ninth time in 11 games, putting pressure on an injury-riddled defense to hold things together. A defensive unit that was missing four of its top five corners as well as its starting linebacker, Jordan Hicks, yielded 346 yards in the first half — the most the Eagles have given up since November 2015 against the Tampa Bay Bucs (355) — as the Eagles trailed at intermission, 19-11.6

But the fight that safety Malcolm Jenkins was calling for following an energy-less drubbing at the hands of the New Orleans Saints the week prior kicked in just in time. Jenkins sparked that himself with an interception at the end of the second quarter — the defense’s first since Week 6 against this same Giants team.

Saquon Barkley broke off a 51-yard touchdown the series prior, and the defense was reeling. On the sideline after that drive, Jenkins and a couple other veterans asked defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz to simplify the game plan for the inexperienced secondary. Schwartz did, and the defense responded.

“I think that was a turning point, especially in that game – who knows about our season – where that could have just continued to snowball out of control,” Jenkins said of the team’s response. “But we weren’t going to allow that.”cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

Michael Bennett turned the jets on in the second half, coming up with his team-leading 6 1/2 sack of the season on the Giants’ first possession to set the tone. He added a tackle for a loss later in the frame, posing with arms crossed as the volatile home crowd showed their approval. The front four increased the pressure on Eli Manning as the game wore on, allowing a decimated defensive backfield to stabilize.

‘Trash’ to treasure: Bills QB Josh Allen runs over Jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey called Buffalo Bills rookie quarterback Josh Allen “trash” in an offseason interview with GQ, then doubled down on his assessment this week.

Allen responded by setting a team record for a quarterback with 99 rushing yards on 13 carries, including a 14-yard fourth-quarter scramble for a touchdown and another 45-yard run to help seal a 24-21 win. Allen had 101 rushing yards before two kneel-downs to end the game.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

“Josh is a baller,” Bills safety Jordan Poyer said. “They can say whatever they want to say about Josh. Jalen can say whatever he wants to say about Josh. Josh came in there and handled that defense today.”

The performance topped the franchise’s previous single-game mark of 79 yards, set by Tyrod Taylor in 2015.5

“Josh played phenomenal,” Bills linebacker Lorenzo Alexander said. “I would like to see what [Ramsey] thought now, after Josh played as well as he played today. Playing physical. He ran over some of the defensive players and made some big plays. When you talk, you have to show up and show out. Josh was able to do that by just showing the way he played today.”

Allen’s efforts might not be enough to put the Bills, who improved to 4-7, back in the conversation for the playoffs. But after being sidelined for four games with an elbow injury, Allen returned to the lineup and gave the Bills promise for 2019 as they close out this season with a six-game stretch in which Allen’s development will be paramount.

Despite not having played since Oct. 14, Allen was spectacular in the first quarter Sunday. He completed 5-of-6 passes for 125 yards, including a 75-yard touchdown strike to undrafted rookie wide receiver Robert Foster in which Allen managed a strong and accurate throw despite being sandwiched by multiple Jaguars defenders. Foster, who caught passes of 47 and 43 yards from Matt Barkley in a Nov. 11 victory over the New York Jets, again led the Bills with 94 receiving yards.nfl nike jerseys for cheap

The Bills, who scored 41 points in their Week 10 win over the Jets, have scored 65 points in their past two games after managing only 96 in their first nine games, when they went 2-7.

“I said before the Jets game that this offense is really close,” Allen said. “It showed in the last two weeks of what we’re capable of doing. Matt [Barkley] came in against the Jets and did a heck of a job. … Coach [Sean McDermott] says that this is a time for me and us to grow, and I’m doing that and trusting the guys around me.”

Amazing connection: Jets WR meets brother he never knew

Instead of watching football on the couch Sunday or flying home from a bye-week getaway, New York Jets receiver Jermaine Kearse used his day off to fill a void in his life.

He connected with his half-brother, whom he met only recently for the first time. It was the culmination of a search that took nearly a year.new nike nfl jerseys for sale cheap

Kearse spent the day in Hoboken, New Jersey, catching up over lunch with David Ashley, 34, who lives in Manhattan and works as a hair-styling instructor. They have the same father, but Kearse didn’t know about Ashley until after their father died. That was 11 years ago, when Kearse was 17.

“It was definitely different,” Kearse told ESPN, recalling Sunday’s meeting. “I mean, it’s a stranger who’s your brother. But he’s been real cool. [Sunday] was real nice. We talked a little bit, and I heard how he grew up.”5

“I knew of him and I knew his name, but that was it,” Kearse said. “Last I heard, he lived in California. But that was it.”

As his football career flourished — University of Washington, the Seattle Seahawks and the Jets — Kearse remained curious about his mystery brother. His curiosity piqued at the end of last season, when he brought up David in a conversation with his paternal grandmother. He was looking for any shred of information. She knew the name of Ashley’s mother, so he took that clue and researched her on the internet.nfl nike jerseys cheap china

“Did a little more digging and found him,” Kearse said proudly. “I did the research and I looked him up. It was very impulsive. I had my aunt vet it to see if it was him. It was. She met him before I met him. He met my aunt and my grandmother out in North Carolina.”

Kearse spoke to David by phone in February, and they set up a brief meeting after the Jets’ home opener, Sept. 16, a loss to the Miami Dolphins. They exchanged pleasantries, but it wasn’t an in-depth conversation. That didn’t happen until Sunday.

“He was surprised,” said Kearse, recalling his brother’s reaction the first time he contacted him. “He said he knew about me. He said he never wanted to contact me because he didn’t want to be ‘that guy.’ I guess, with me being in the NFL, he didn’t want to be that random person who comes out of nowhere and says, ‘Hey, I’m your brother.’ Which I respect.

Rajon Rondo serves as coach on floor for ‘Baby Lakers’

The morning after breaking his right hand, Rajon Rondo was at the Los Angeles Lakers’ practice facility barking out insights and instructions to his teammates.

As usual.

“He was talking. Surprise, surprise,” Lakers coach Luke Walton said with a smile. “He was talking a lot.”nike nfl cheap jerseys

With his hand swelling through its splint, Rondo directed Brandon Ingram and players on the second-unit through sets in preparation for their next game at the Orlando Magic.6

Rondo lobbied Walton again to be a part of the team’s upcoming three-game road trip and then he was gone, off to Cedars-Sinai Kerlan-Jobe Institute to have Dr. Steven S. Shin repair the third metacarpal in his right hand.
LeBron James’ voice is without question the most important and influential in the Lakers’ locker room; but several of the younger players view Rondo’s leadership as second, if not on par, to that of James.nfl nike jerseys cheap china

While some coaches and execs told ESPN over the summer that Rondo could be a pain for the Lakers, the point guard has been a coach on the floor and mentor to the young core for Walton.

Given the freedom to be himself, Rajon Rondo has been … Rajon Rondo. The Lakers have seen the acclaimed basketball IQ. They’ve also seen his unpredictability, his fire manifesting in a flurry of punches in his first game in Staples, resulting in a three-game suspension after the NBA ruled he had spit at Chris Paul.

But his biggest — and now primary — impact will be on the development of the “Baby Lakers.” Rondo has been trying to influence Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma and Josh Hart by example and instruction. And with the sidelining of the veteran point guard for at least four weeks, that balance will tilt entirely toward instruction.

Steph Curry ‘extremely proud’ of how Warriors handled Draymond Green, Kevin Durant drama

As the Golden State Warriors continue to repair internal damage in the wake of a verbal altercation between Kevin Durant and Draymond Green during and following a Monday night overtime loss to the LA Clippers, point guard Stephen Curry said he is “extremely proud” of the way the team has come together since.new nike nfl jerseys for sale cheap

“It’s been different. It’s been tough,” Curry said Saturday before the Warriors’ 112-109 loss to the Dallas Mavericks, their third defeat in four games. “Obviously it sucks not being able to play. It sucks when you’re not with the team when something like that happens. But I think the way we’ve handled it as a team, the way Draymond’s handled it, the way KD’s handled it, it’s been nothing but professionalism and understanding that it’s about the team. And the conversations that we’ve all had, whether it’s one-on-one, as a team, is keeping that in mind.5

“And at the end of the day, nothing should distract us from what our goal is. I think guys have attempted and are going to continue to get to a place where we can continue to move forward, get back to who we are as a team — and once we get over these injuries, we’ll be able to show what we’re about as a team and do it together, so I’m extremely proud of the way we’ve handled this last week. It’s an opportunity to really implode and crumble, but that’s not going to happen.”

Curry, out since Nov. 8 with a strained left groin, spoke Saturday for the first time since both the injury and the altercation between Durant and Green, one that led to a one-game suspension for the latter. Curry remains confident that his teammates will be able to move forward.nike nfl cheap jerseys

“They have a lot of equity built in their relationship,” Curry said of Durant and Green. “We’ve won championships together. They’ve brought out the best in each other. Obviously, I don’t think they’ve had an incident to this level, but you don’t have the experiences you’ve had and go through the journey that we’ve been on and let it be derailed by something like that. Obviously, from a personal standpoint, there are things that need to be worked through. That’s like any relationship in life. But at the end of the day, they both understand that neither one of them is going to be a reason that we don’t win a championship this year. I can roll with that.”