Bruins

Wakeup Call: Goodbye Guillen; goodbye Holmgren; goodbye NHL season?

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Wakeup Call: Goodbye Guillen; goodbye Holmgren; goodbye NHL season?

Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy andor interesting tidbits -- for Wednesday, October 24:

AUTO RACING
Welcome back, Dale Jr. (AP)

BASEBALL
Got an extra 10 grand lying around? Then buy yourself a ticket behind home plate for Game 1 of the World Series tonight. (NBC's Off The Bench)

The Tigers already played in Oakland this postseason, so they figure they know the kind of fan craziness they'll be facing in San Francisco. (CSN Bay Area)

You know the bat Hunter Pence shattered while hitting the strange triple that broke open Game 7 against the Cardinals? Someone sold it to a fan for 400. And Pence -- who names all his bats; this one's dubbed "Fryer" -- wants it back. (CSN Bay Area)

After the Fidel Castro business, it was all downhill for Ozzie Guillen in Miami . . . and the inevitable conclusion was reached yesterday. (AP)

Sounds like Theo learned his lesson in Boston. (CSN Chicago)

Dodgers close Kenley Jansen undergoes heart surgery, but it doesn't appear as ominous as it sounds. (AP)

COLLEGE FOOTBALL
Everett Golson will be back in the starting lineup when No. 5 Notre Dame plays at No. 8 Oklahoma on Saturday. (AP)

It's just never good when one teammate accuses another of disrespecting his manhood. (AP)

Get your tickets now for those 2020 and 2021 meetings between Oregon and Ohio State. (AP)

Idaho State suspends coach Mike Kramer for Saturday's game after determining he "violated the university's conduct policy" when he shoved wide receiver Derek Graves to the ground during practice on Oct. 3. Graves reported the incident to the police, hired a lawyer, and says he's suffering from neck and back spasms. (AP)

GOLF
Padraig Harrison may yet participate in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf. (AP)

HOCKEY
"What would we be talking about?" Oh, I don't know, Bill. The weather? The election? Hey, wait! I know! How about suicidal labor strategies down through the years? (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk)

The lockout is killing Daniel Alfredsson's desire to return to the Senators in particular, and hockey in general. (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk)

PRO BASKETBALL
Pun of the day: Heat have a little problem heading into the season. Get it? (NBC's Pro Basketball Talk)

Or maybe this is better: The NBA's making a big change to the All-Star ballot. (AP)

Twenty assists from LeBron in a single game? Coach K says it's possible. (AP)

Dirk Nowitzki's going to make sure he's completely recovered from knee surgery before returning to the Mavericks. (AP)

The Derrick Rose-less Bulls couldn't be happy to see Kirk Hinrich leave the floor because of a groin injury Tuesday night. (Pro Basketball Talk)

PRO FOOTBALL
So why are the Patriots still in Foxboro if the Rams have already arrived in London? (AP)

Relax everybody, says Jay Cutler; he thinks Ndamukong Suh's hit was clean. (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

John Harbaugh is hiding behind the letter of the law as the NFL investigates why the Ravens never placed Ed Reed -- who says he's been playing with torn cartilage in his shoulder -- on the weekly injury report. (CSN Baltimore)

At the other end of the forthrightness spectrum, we present the Cardinals' Calais Campbell. (CSN Bay Area)

We still don't know how many games Maurice Jones-Drew will miss, except that the number will be "multiple". (Pro Football Talk)

Also on tap to miss multiple games: Sean Lee, who may be out the rest of the year because of a toe injury. (AP)

Come on, Warren. You ought to know that in this talk-show, rush-to-judgment society, six games is more than enough time to cast a thumbs-up or thumbs-down on Cam Newton. Right? (Pro Football Talk)

Things didn't work out in Cleveland for Mike Holmgren. (AP)

And they don't seem to be working out in Carolina for Ron Rivera. (AP)

Didn't the Packers just renovate Lambeau Field? (AP)

The Bills say thanks, but no thanks -- actually, they're not even saying thanks -- to a proposed stadium in downtown Buffalo. (Pro Football Talk)

Pastrnak on B's loss: "We kind of stopped playing"

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Pastrnak on B's loss: "We kind of stopped playing"

BOSTON – At the end of the day, it was simply a game where the Bruins allowed themselves to get outworked in the third period and overtime. 

The B’s held a three-goal lead in the second period and still enjoyed a two-goal lead in the third period, but eventually dropped a frustrating, futile 5-4 overtime loss to the Buffalo Sabres at TD Garden on Saturday night. It was clear to most speaking after the game that the Bruins eased up on the gas pedal once they’d scored their fourth goal of the game in the second period, and simply watched as the Sabres stomped all over them in the game’s second half. 

“I think we might have been a little bit too scared to play [in the third period], you know? We tried to just flip the pucks away, and didn’t make any plays trying to get it in the zone. Instead we should have just kept going like we did in the first two periods,” said David Pastrnak, who scored a pair of goals early in the loss to allow the Bruins to build up the three-goal lead. “Obviously we’re disappointed. We got one point. I think we didn’t play our game in the third period. We kind of stopped playing and they were all over us, and you know, it’s on us. We were the ones that gave them their point, but the first two periods were good. It’s just another learning session.”

To Pastrnak’s point, the Bruins were outshot by a 15-6 margin in the final 20 minutes of regulation and 21-6 overall in the third period and overtime prior to Ryan O’Reilly’s game-winner during 3-on-3 play. It was at this point the Bruins certainly missed stalwart stay-at-home defensemen Adam McQuaid and Kevan Miller in the D-zone, and fell short of qualified penalty killers while trying to burn off a Brandon Carlo interference call at the end of the third period. 

All of that caught up to them once the Bruins loosened their grip on the Sabres, but certainly the feeling is that the loss should’ve been avoidable even if some of the circumstances made it difficult for the Black and Gold. It also should have been avoidable against a Sabres hockey club that was dreadful last season, and is again one of the doormats in the Atlantic Division in the early going thus far. 

“Those are the games you can’t lose. We obviously didn’t do the job there in the third and close it out, but we’re going to have to regroup and work on our game and be better for the next one,” said Brad Marchand. “We didn’t play the game we needed to play. We relaxed a bit and we started losing a few battles in the wrong areas, and you know, they just played better than we did.”

It’s mystifying that any team would need a crash-and-born loss like Saturday night in order to learn any lessons moving forward, and it certainly might have been a different story for the Bruins if they weren’t missing a few big defensive pieces. But that’s not how it went down for the Black and Gold as they sagged under rising pressure from the Sabres, and simply stopped working when the chips were on the table late in Saturday night’s game. 

Astros beat Yankees in Game 7 to advance to World Series, 4-0

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Astros beat Yankees in Game 7 to advance to World Series, 4-0

HOUSTON - Charlie Morton and Lance McCullers combined on a three-hitter, Jose Altuve and Evan Gattis homered and the Houston Astros reached the World Series, blanking the New York Yankees 4-0 Saturday night in Game 7 of the AL Championship Series.

Just four years removed from their third straight 100-loss season in 2013, the Astros shut down the Yankees for two straight games after dropping three in a row in the Bronx.

Next up for the Astros: Game 1 of the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday night. Houston aces Dallas Keuchel and ALCS MVP Justin Verlander will have plenty of rest, too, before the matchup begins at Dodger Stadium.

Houston has never won even a single World Series game. The only previous time the Astros made it this far, they were a National League team when they were swept by the Chicago White Sox in 2005.

Now, manager A.J. Hinch's club has a chance to win that elusive first title, while trying to boost a region still recovering from Hurricane Harvey.

Houston improved to 6-0 at Minute Maid Park in these playoffs and became the fifth team in major league history to win a seven-game postseason series by winning all four of its home games.

Morton bounced back from a loss in Game 3 to allow two hits over five scoreless innings. Starter-turned-postseason reliever McCullers limited the Yankees to just one hit while fanning six over the next four.

Combined, they throttled the Yankees one last time in Houston. Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez and their New York teammates totaled just three runs in the four road games.

CC Sabathia entered the game 10-0 with a 1.69 ERA in 13 starts this season after a Yankees loss. But he struggled with command and was gone with one out in the fourth inning.

Houston was up 2-0 in fifth when former Yankees star Brian McCann came through for the second straight game by hitting a two-run double after snapping an 0-for-20 skid with an ground-rule RBI double to give Houston its first run on Friday night.

The Yankees, trying to reach the World Series for the first time since 2009, lost an elimination game for the first time this season after winning their first four in these playoffs. New York struggled on the road this postseason, with this loss dropping the team to 1-6.