Stevens’ words were steady, calm. Yet the anguish in his eyes betrayed him.

Limited Mens Desmond Bryant Jersey Stevens’ relationship with Hayward dates back a decade. At Butler, Stevens was the first to believe in Hayward, the small-college coach relentlessly pursuing the small-high-school player. Together, they advanced to a Final Four. Because of each other they became prized NBA commodities. And seven years after Hayward’s halfcourt heave nearly upended Duke in the national title game, Hayward and Stevens reunited to chase an NBA championship.

Hopefully, Stevens said, we’ll get a full recovery.

Inside the locker room, silence. Boston rallied valiantly, improbably, after Hayward’s injury. The Celtics fell behind by 18 and pushed back to lead by four only to lose 102-99. On one end, Horford, one of four returning players from last season’s 53-win team, dressed dutifully. He was on the floor when Hayward fell. He heard the sound. He saw the leg. He knew the injury was significant. He winced when a reporter asked him about it.
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Asked how he responds to such fans, Mara said: I respond to them by saying that I prefer that our players stand. I’ve asked our players to stand. I think we’re down to one player who has continued to kneel. But at the end of the day, this is America and we do have a thing called the First Amendment.

Goodell said he has had no direct communication with Trump on the issue. He acknowledged that the anger by many fans has made the league’s handling of the matter a key issue to sponsors and those networks that televise NFL games. Goodell cited six or seven NFL players continuing to participate in protests during the anthem.

I understand what our fans feel about this issue, Goodell said. And we feel the same way about the importance of our flag, about the importance of patriotism. And I believe our players feel that way.

We’re just being cautious more than anything.

The matchup that matters most: Porcello versus the top of the Houston lineup. In Game 1, Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve homered off Sale in the first. In Game 2, Carlos Correa hit a two-run homer in the first. In Game 3, the Astros scored three runs in the first, including Correa’s two-run homer. Is this a bad time to mention Porcello led the majors in home runs allowed?

The prediction: We should get the first close game of the series, with Houston’s ability to hit the long ball off Porcello an obvious advantage. Astros win 6-4.

Campbell got the 2011 Oakland Raiders off to a 4-2 start before suffering a season-ending collarbone injury. Oakland head coach Hue Jackson, who now holds that same position in Cleveland, promptly traded with Cincinnati for Carson Palmer, effectively ending Campbell’s days in the Bay Area.

The Lakers’ Australian recruit Andrew Bogut also sat out the pre-season game with a groin injury, but he says he will be ready for next week’s regular season opener.

“It’s just a little tweak,” Bogut told AAP.

“We’re just being cautious more than anything.

“If it was a playoff game I’d be right to go but it’s just one of those things that I have to be more careful right now because of the pre-season.”

Lakers’ rookie star Lonzo Ball also missed the game to rest an ankle injury.

In other pre-season games Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Denver Nuggets 96-86, the Orlando Magic outlasted Patty Mills’ San Antonio Spurs 103-98, the Chicago Bulls trumped the Cleveland Cavaliers 108-94, the Toronto Raptors were too good for the Detroit Pistons 116-94 and in the latest international exhibition the Indiana Pacers beat Haifa Maccabi Haifa 108-89.ravens_009

Which 76ers do you want in fantasy drafts?

To some, the Philadelphia 76ers are already a playoff team, and to others, they’ve proved absolutely nothing. Well, each option seems legitimate to me! After all, this franchise pretty much tried to lose for the past several seasons leading up to this campaign in which they believe competing in the watered-down East is certainly possible. The 76ers are loaded with young talent and buoyed with veteran aid, and it sure seems that fantasy owners are caught in the middle of whether to buy in or proceed with caution.

Authentic Youth Laremy Tunsil Jersey Rondo, 31, was injured in the first half of Friday’s preseason game against the Oklahoma City Thunder and did not play Sunday against his former team, the Chicago Bulls.

New Orleans opens its regular season Oct. 18 against the Memphis Grizzlies. Head coach Alvin Gentry acknowledged that the Pelicans will miss Rondo’s leadership if he is sidelined for an extended period.

He’s just a great leader to have on your team, Gentry said Sunday, according to the New Orleans Advocate. If you want to have a mentor in this league, I would suggest him.

Authentic Youth Myles Garrett Jersey The Pelicans signed Rondo to a one-year, $3.3 million deal during the offseason.

Even beyond the roster makeover, the Celtics made sweeping changes to their medical and training staff. Longtime trainer Ed Lacerte and strength coach Bryan Doo were let go and the team hired Art Horne to work alongside director of sports science Johann Bilsborough.

The Celtics knew they got one of the league’s most skilled big men when they inked Horford to a four-year, $113 million max contract at the start of free agency in 2016. And it didn’t take long to see just how impactful he could be on the court.

Boston coaches excitedly nudged one another on the bench throughout the Celtics’ first preseason game last year on the campus of University of Massachusetts. Stevens already liked to initiate offense through his bigs, and here was Horford spraying the ball around the court to open shooters.

Smith makes 43 saves to lift Flames over Ducks 2-0

Early in his first season with Calgary, Mike Smith is already helping the Flames purge some unwanted history.

Smith made 43 saves and the Flames ended a 25-game skid at Honda Center with a 2-0 win over the Anaheim Ducks on Monday night.

Authentic Youth Nick Foles Jersey Calgary hadn’t won at Anaheim since Jan. 19, 2004. It ended that streak behind a gem from Smith, acquired in a trade with Arizona in the offseason.

When you play a team that long and you’re not on the winning part of it, I think it gets old pretty fast, Smith said. I’ve been on teams when it’s happened to me. I wanted to help this team get over that hump.

St. Louis led the Islanders 2-0 in the third period before New York scored twice in the final seven minutes of regulation to force overtime. The Blues also led the Penguins by two goals in the third before conceding twice, and they surrendered both goals against Dallas in the final 20 minutes.
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We have to make sure we’re not getting caught in this cycle because, when the score is tied, or earlier in the game when both teams are pushing, that’s when we play our best hockey, Yeo said. We have to make sure that we continue to do that for 60 minutes.

The Rangers claimed forward Adam Cracknell off waivers on Monday from the Dallas Stars. Cracknell played under Rangers assistant coach Lindy Ruff in Dallas. New York scratched 18-year-old rookie forward Filip Chytil against the Canadiens, dressing 11 forwards, after Chytil appeared in the first two games of the season.

The Hurricanes won their opener for the first time in seven years. Carolina fell behind Minnesota 3-1 in the second period, then scored three consecutive goals before the Wild tied the game with one second left in regulation. Carolina’s Jaccob Slavin netted the only goal of the shootout.

This will give us confidence, Peters said. There’s a lot of areas to work on. The whole thing for us is to realize our potential.

Marshall attempted to make a catch deep down the right sideline and hurt his left leg when he came down awkwardly out of bounds.

He had his left cleat off as he was taken to the locker room on a cart. A source told Schefter that Marshall suffered a sprained ankle.

Shepard was injured when he was hit hard over the middle earlier on the same drive. The second-year wide receiver came into Sunday’s game leading the Giants with 21 catches for 254 yards and a touchdown. Shepard had one catch for 9 yards against the Chargers.

Elite Mens Clayton Fejedelem Jersey Marshall, who was a key acquisition this offseason, started the season slowly. He had 16 catches for 139 yards in his first four games with the Giants. He had two catches for 15 yards before leaving Sunday’s game with the injury.

Led by QB Joe Flacco, the Ravens scored on five of their eight drives Sunday, including a key third-quarter field goal that cut the Raiders’ momentum.
Nick Vannett Limited Jersey Flacco had struggled to get the ball downfield in losing the past two weeks. He changed that on the opening drive of the game for the Ravens (3-2) when he connected on a 52-yard pass to Wallace that set up an early touchdown and established the tone for the day.

The Raiders (2-3), playing without injured star quarterback Derek Carr and two key cornerbacks, played from behind all game as Smith returned Jared Cook’s fumble 47 yards for a touchdown that made it 14-0 just 3:50 in.

Backup quarterback E.J. Manuel , making his fourth start in the past three seasons, threw a 41-yard touchdown pass to Michael Crabtree and led another TD drive that ended in Marshawn Lynch’s 3-yard run . He finished 13 for 26 for 159 yards.

But that wasn’t nearly enough for the Raiders, who have dropped three straight following a 2-0 start, putting a severe dent in their hopes to challenge in the AFC West.

Smith saw action in 27 games for the Bucs in 2014 and 2015, with 18 starts.

After Marcus Peters was caught on camera shouting profanities at a fan during Monday night’s game, Chiefs coach Andy Reid said he has spoken with his cornerback and “it’s been addressed.”

After Redskins receiver Terrelle Pryor called out Rams safety Cody Davis on Twitter last week for what he believed was a low hit during their Sept. 17 meeting, Davis sent Pryor a direct message but never heard back.

Redskins wide receiver Terrelle Pryor clearly was bothered by a hit from safety Cody Davis during Sunday’s win over the Rams.

“Jacquies looked sharp at times,” Koetter said. “He had a real nice spin move, but at the same time — and this is just my opinion — like we said yesterday, he needs a little more contact work. You can’t expect this guy to be ready to go at his former self without having full-speed football. I mean he just hasn’t.

“It’s been a long road back for Jacquies. When he was at his best, he was a pretty darn good pass-rusher.”

Defensive coordinator Mike Smith said this week that he felt Smith “has had a tough go” and “has fought his tail off to get back.”

He recorded 13.5 sacks during that span, second only to Gerald McCoy and the most of any Bucs’ edge rusher at that time.

Now Goodell was calling Smith, and the overarching question was whether the league and the union, two entities that never miss a chance to argue, would unify against an unprecedented attack by the president — or split, again.

FPI thinks the rest of the team is good enough that the Raiders are still solid favorites hosting Baltimore coming to the West Coast.

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Game Gabe Jackson Jersey Quarterback Marcus Mariota’s hamstring is the injury to watch this week, and there’s a possibility that his status won’t be known until Sunday. He was a limited participant in practice Wednesday, throwing during individual drills in pads and a helmet. Coach Mike Mularkey said the Titans don’t want to put Mariota in a position where he could reinjure his hamstring, but the coach did mention that the third-year quarterback doesn’t need to fully participate in practice to play Sunday. Mariota’s injury is minor, but hamstring strains tend to linger, and it would likely affect his mobility if he did play. Matt Cassel would get the start if Mariota can’t play. — Cameron Wolfe

FPI might not love Derek Carr, but it certainly recognizes that there is a very large drop-off between him and backup EJ Manuel, who will start for the Raiders with Carr injured.

Manuel, a former first-round bust, has a career Total QBR of 33.9. For context, that would be the 27th-best Total QBR among qualifying quarterbacks this season, and dead last among qualifying quarterbacks in 2016. Not ideal for a game in which Oakland has so much at stake. Because both teams are now long shots for their respective divisions, they could end up direct competitors for a wild-card spot.

Fortunately for Oakland, FPI thinks the rest of the team is good enough that the Raiders are still solid favorites hosting Baltimore coming to the West Coast.

One note on Baltimore’s Joe Flacco: While he has a reputation for having success by simply chucking it deep, he has barely attempted that strategy this season and when he has, it hasn’t worked. Flacco has attempted only seven pass attempts of 20 air yards or more this season, and has the worst raw QBR on such throws in the league.

Best and worst wide receiver matchups for fantasy football Week 5

By utilizing our play-by-play data, we’re able to identify where each wide receiver and cornerback lines up on each play. By tracking matchups between the two positions, including potential shadow situations, we can offer the best projections, rankings and fantasy football advice each week.

Below are the receivers with the best and worst Week 5 matchups, as Everson Griffen Jersey well as the corresponding fantasy impact.

What has gone right: Wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has Mike Pouncey Youth Jersey re-gained his game-changing form after a preseason ankle injury lingered into the regular season. First-round draft pick Evan Engram also has become the pass-catching tight end quarterback Eli Manning has needed for years.

What has gone wrong: The same offensive problems that maligned New York in 2016 — a poor offensive line and the lack of a consistent running game — continue this season. That has placed even more strain on Manning, who simply can’t carry the offense on his own at age 36.

What’s next: The Giants will be favored to get their first win Sunday against the visiting Chargers, but the three opponents that follow — Denver, Seattle and the Los Angeles Rams — probably will keep New York in the NFC East basement and generate further speculation about coach Ben McAdoo’s job security.

It takes more than just speed to be special in the NFL.

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While Johnson was long considered the unquestioned king of the 40-yard dash, Rondel Menendez was also credited with a 4.24 40-yard dash when he ran at the 1999 NFL Combine.

But Menendez was drafted in the seventh round by the Atlanta Falcons, spent time on five different NFL rosters in 1999 and 2000, and never saw the field during a regular season game. The Bengals can expect to get a whole lot more out of their speedster.

Youth Landry Jones Jersey At just 188 pounds, there will be continued concern about his durability, but Ross brings some spiciness to go with his quickness. He’s a crisp route runner with fantastic footwork, great hands, and the ability to make defenders look silly.

Cornerbacks in the NFL will attempt to overpower and bully Ross at the line of scrimmage, but it’s a risky strategy to get that close to a receiver as shifty and quick as the Washington Huskies alum. Just ask former USC cornerback and Tennessee Titans first-round pick Adoree Jackson:

This season, Smith has attempted seven passes longer than 20 yards, roughly 11 percent of his attempts, and complete five of them. One of his best was a dime he dropped to a covered Chris Conley on the Chiefs’ final touchdown drive against the Eagles for a 35-yard gain.

Maybe it took a much younger, rocket-armed existential threat to draw out this new, aggressive Alex Smith, or maybe it’s the fact that he’s finally playing in an offense that he’s truly comfortable in …

One of the things we did when Alex came here was we went back and kind of looked at some of the stuff he had done in college and was familiar with, Reid said, referring to what would become part of the base offense.

The first: The Chiefs lost Eric Berry for the season to a non-contact Achilles injury in the season opener. Perhaps no defensive position is as heaped with responsibility as safety in today’s NFL, and Berry plays it as instinctually and beautifully as anyone in the league.

Mike Tomlin: ‘I’m done with’ talking about Le’Veon Bell’s holdout

Le’Veon Bell finished the first game of the NFL regular season with just 47 total yards and no touchdowns, but Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said this isn’t an indicator of how the running back’s season will go.

The Steelers managed to squeak by the Browns, 21-18, but Bell’s best play of the game was a 10-yard reception from quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. On the ground, he ran for just 32 yards on 10 touches.

What this means for the Bears: It’s too early to make any kind of definitive statement, but Cohen’s presence adds a meaningful punch to a backfield that already features 2016 1,300-yard rusher Howard. Cohen’s long run set the stage for a four-yard touchdown plunge from Howard, tying the team’s season opener at 10-all at halftime.

What this means for Tarik Cohen: Cohen has plenty to prove in 2017. Not only is he making the leap from an FCS program to the NFL, but he’s also one of the league’s smallest tailbacks at 5’6. On Sunday, he did the Bears — and alma mater North Carolina A&T — proud.

“I’ve got another decade of varied experience rather than going in there as essentially a person who grew up in coaching and scouting without a lot of experience in other areas,” he said.

Although this may be true, Savage knows the likelihood of getting another GM gig is slim.