Cubs

CSN to air unprecedented, four-part documentary on "The Making of the LuvaBulls"

CSN to air unprecedented, four-part documentary on "The Making of the LuvaBulls"

The Making of the Luvabulls to premiere Wednesday, November 2 at 7:00 PM;

CSNChicago.com to provide additional web-exclusive content, including extended video clips
Chicago, IL (October 26, 2011) Beginning Wednesday, November 2 at 7:00 PM, Comcast SportsNet will debut a landmark, four-part, behind-the scenes documentary entitled The Making of the Luvabulls, chronicling the personal dreams, joy and heartbreak taken by over 200 Chicago area women vying for just 25 spots on one of the NBAs most prestigious dance teams.

With over 30 hours of exclusive footage shot over the course of four weeks, The Making of the Luvabulls (narrated by Comcast SportsNets Pat Boyle and produced by Sarah Lauch & Ryan McGuffey) will take viewers through the entire, never-before-seen process on exactly what it takes to make this team. From the initial mid-August tryouts featuring 200 hopefuls (which was immediately cut down to 47 in one day) -- to the grueling minicamp process that followed -- to the moment the official 25-girl roster was announced, Comcast SportsNet showcases the amazing athletic skills, along with the raw emotions of these determined women every step of the way.

Additional highlights from the four-part series include extensive interviewsbio features with numerous women on the 2011-12 Luvabulls dance team including former Miss Illinois Ashley Bond, Luvabulls Director Cathy Core, choreographer Kim Tyler, along with many other women who participated in the process -- including those who made the final cut -- and those who didnt. Viewers can also look forward to several Day in the Life segments, which follow the girls around for a day featuring candid interviews with their co-workers, roommates, friends and husbandsboyfriends. Plus -- Comcast SportsNet will also showcase an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at the chaotic, yet ultimately sexy Luvabulls poster photo shoot.

We wanted to provide our viewers with an honest look at what it truly takes to become a member of the Luvabulls, not just from a physical standpoint, but also from a mental one as well, said Charlie Schumacher, Senior News Director for Comcast SportsNet Chicago. We captured so many euphoric moments, but also numerous moments of heartbreak. Most importantly, The Making of the Luvabulls showcases so many hard-working, determined women trying their best to make their dream come true.

Viewers are also urged to visit a special Making of the Luvabulls page set up on Comcast SportsNets newly-enhanced website, CSNChicago.com: CSNChicago.comluvabulls, which currently showcases the teaser trailer for the series, along with behind-the-scenes commentary from producers Lauch & McGuffey. This page will also include a Luvabulls photo slide show and web-exclusive video excerpts from the series that will not be shown on Comcast SportsNet. Fans can also visit the official Luvabulls page on Bulls.com.

Note the following episode-by-episode details and quotes for The Making of the Luvabulls, premiering Wednesday, November 2 at 7:00 PM only on Comcast SportsNet (schedule subject to change):

Episode 1: Wednesday, November 2 at 7:00 PM

(Additional replays: Fri, Nov. 4 at 12:30 PM & Sun, Nov. 6 at 9:30 PM)

Summary: The first episode takes a look back at the history of the Luvabulls, along with profiles of Director Cathy Core and choreographer Kim Tyler. Highlights include the initial tryouts featuring over 200 girls, with only 47 of them being asked to come back to the intense next phase of minicamp.

Episode 2: Wednesday, November 9 at 7:00 PM

(Additional replays: Fri, Nov. 11 at 12:30 PM & Sun, Nov. 13 at 9:30 PM)

Summary: Minicamp begins. Viewers will witness the physicalmental stress of a grueling choreography session that not only has to be learned quickly, but accurately. Additional highlights also take a break from camp with Day in the Life features with Ashley, Kafi and Jackie.

Episode 3: Tuesday, November 15 at 7:00 PM

(Additional replays: Fri, Nov. 18 at 3:00 PM, Sun, Nov. 20 at 2:00 PM & Thu, Nov. 24 at 8:00 PM)

Summary: As minicamp concludes following countless hours of intense choreography routines, the final 2011-12 Luvabulls team is selected. The emotional highs and lows from this episode are not to be missed.

Episode 4: Tuesday, November 22 at 7:00 PM

(Additional replays: Thu, Nov. 24 at 8:30 PM & Mon, Nov. 28 at 7:00 PM)

Summary: We go behind-the-scenes for the orchestrated chaos that is the always-popular Luvabulls poster shoot, plus now that the team is set, viewers will be treated to some additional practice footage that clearly indicates the pressure is now on for this years team to succeed.

QUOTES FROM THE MAKING OF THE LUVABULLS

"This is show business...they should come in knowing what they are getting in to. You see those veterans when they come in for their audition...I mean you cant touch them."

- Luvabulls Director Cathy Core on girls showing up to auditions

"It is a very difficult process and anybody that kind of makes it through that training process, kudos to you because I felt like it is one of the hardest things mentally, physically, that you will ever go through in life being challenged on both ends and have that balance to make it through to the other side."

- Luvabulls choreographer Kim Tyler on auditionsminicamp

"We look for a lot more than just a pretty face and a good dancer. We look for the whole package. Somebody who can speak in front of crowds and interact with CEOs and the community and really be a great representation for us and for the Bulls."

- Bulls Sr. Director of Game Operations Jeff Wohlschlaeger on what the team looks for in a Luvabull

"There are no guarantees. Every girl needs to try their hardest. You are just like a rookie. You have to learn the choreography, you have to stay on top of everything, you have to look like a Luvabull. As a leader, you have to be a leader."

- Erika, nine-year Luvabulls veteran

"I love this city. I love sports. I love the Bulls. It all ties together. It is just truly amazing and I feel blessed that I got chosen that first year."

- Ashley, five-year Luvabulls veteran

Breaking down where Cubs can turn NLCS around and beat L.A.

bryant-1016.jpg
USA TODAY

Breaking down where Cubs can turn NLCS around and beat L.A.

“Sometimes, you got to lay your marbles out there,” Jon Lester said Sunday night inside Dodger Stadium’s visiting clubhouse, before the Cubs flew home from Los Angeles down 0-2 in the National League Championship Series. “And you get beat.”

It will be extremely difficult for the Cubs to win four of the next five games against the Dodgers, starting Tuesday night at Wrigley Field. But the Cubs had the, uh, marbles to win last year’s World Series and have developed the muscle memory from winning six playoff rounds and playing in 33 postseason games since October 2015.

There is a cross section left of the 2015 team that beat the Pittsburgh Pirates and silenced PNC Park’s blackout crowd in a sudden-death wild-card game. While 2016 is seen in hindsight as a year of destiny, those Cubs still had to kill the myths about the even-year San Francisco Giants, survive a 21-inning scoreless streak against the Dodgers and win Games 5, 6, 7 against the Cleveland Indians under enormous stress.

There is at least a baseline of experience to draw from and the sense that the Cubs won’t panic and beat themselves, the way the Washington Nationals broke down in the NL Division Series.

· Remember the Cubs pointed to how their rotation set up as soon as Cleveland took a 3-1 lead in last year’s World Series: Lester, Jake Arrieta and Kyle Hendricks would each give them a chance to win that night. The Dodgers will now have to deal with last year’s major-league ERA leader (Hendricks) in Game 3 and a Cy Young Award winner (Arrieta) on Wednesday night in Game 4.

“Obviously, we know we need to get wins at this point,” Hendricks said. “But approaching it as a must-win is a little extreme. We've just got to go out there and play our brand of baseball.

“Since we accomplished that, we know we just have to take it game by game. Even being down 3-1 (in the World Series), we worry about the next game. In that situation, we didn’t think we had to win three in a row or anything like that. We just came to the ballpark the next day and worried about what we had to do that day.”

· The history lessons only go so far when the Dodgers can line up Yu Darvish as their Game 3 starter instead of, say, Josh Tomlin. There is also a huge difference between facing a worn-down Cleveland staff in late October/early November and a rested Dodger team that clinched a division title on Sept. 22 and swept the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first round. Joe Blanton and Pedro Baez aren’t walking through that bullpen door, either.

“We’ve done it before. We’ve been there before,” shortstop Addison Russell said. “But this year’s a new year. That’s a different ballclub. We’re definitely going to have to bring it.”

· Outside of Kenley Jansen, can you name anyone else in the Los Angeles bullpen off the top of your head? No doubt, the Dodger relievers have been awesome in Games 1 and 2 combined: Eight scoreless innings, zero hits, zero walks and Anthony Rizzo the only one out of 25 batters to reach base when Jansen hit him with a 93.7-mph pitch.

But the Dodgers are going to make mistakes, and the Cubs will have to capitalize. Unless this is the same kind of synthesis from the 2015 NLCS, when the New York Mets used exhaustive scouting reports, power pitching and pinpoint execution to sweep a Cubs team that had already hit the wall.

“Their bullpen is a lot stronger than it was last year,” Kris Bryant said. “They’re really good at throwing high fastballs in the zone. A lot of other teams try to, and they might hit it one out of every four. But this team, it seems like they really can hammer the top of the zone. And they have guys that throw in the upper 90s, so when you mix those two, it’s tough to catch up.”

· Bryant is not having a good October (5-for-28 with 13 strikeouts) and both Lester and Jose Quintana have more hits (one each) than Javier Baez (0-for-19 with eight strikeouts) during the playoffs. But we are still talking about the reigning NL MVP and last year’s NLCS co-MVP.

Ben Zobrist is clearly diminished and no longer the switch-hitting force who became last year’s World Series MVP. Kyle Schwarber doesn’t have the same intimidation factor or playoff aura right now. But one well-timed bunt from Zobrist or a “Schwarbomb” onto the video board could change the entire direction of this series and put the pressure on a Dodger team that knows this year is World Series or bust.

“We need to hit a couple balls hard consecutively,” manager Joe Maddon said. “Once we’re able to do that, we’ll gain our offensive mojo back. That's all that’s going on.

“I inherited something from my dad, and that was patience. So you’ve got to be patient right now. You’ve got to keep putting the boys back out there. You keep believing in them, and eventually it comes back to you.”

· Maddon is a 63-year-old man who opened Monday’s stadium club press conference at Wrigley Field by talking about dry-humping, clearly annoyed by all the second-guessers on Twitter and know-it-all sports writers who couldn’t believe All-Star closer Wade Davis got stranded in the bullpen, watching the ninth inning of Sunday’s 1-1 game turn into a 4-1 walk-off loss.

By the time a potential save situation develops on Tuesday night, roughly 120 hours will have passed since Davis threw his 44th and final pitch at Nationals Park, striking out Bryce Harper to end an instant classic. Just guessing that Maddon will be in the mood to unleash Davis.

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Should the Bears let Mitch Trubisky throw more?

usatsi_10349127.jpg
USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Should the Bears let Mitch Trubisky throw more?

Adam Jahns (Chicago Sun-Times), Ben Finfer (ESPN 1000) and Jordan Cornette (The U/ESPN 1000) join Kap on the panel. Justin Turner hits a walk-off 3-run HR off of John Lackey to give the Dodgers a 2-0 lead in the NLCS. So why was Lackey even in the game? How much blame should Joe Maddon get for the loss?

The Bears run the ball over and over and over again to beat the Ravens in overtime, but should they have let Mitch Trubisky throw the ball more?