Bears

CSN to carry expanded Cubs NLDS pregame/postgame coverage live from St. Louis this weekend!

CSN to carry expanded Cubs NLDS pregame/postgame coverage live from St. Louis this weekend!

Game 1 coverage on Friday, October 9

“Cubs Pregame Live” at 5:00 PM CT on CSN

“Cubs Postgame Live” at approx. 9:15 PM CT on CSN

Game 2 coverage on Saturday, October 10

“Cubs Pregame Live” at 4:00 PM CT on CSN+

“Cubs Postgame Live” at approx. 8:00 PM CT on CSN+

Chicago, IL (October 8, 2015) – Comcast SportsNet, the television home for the most games and the most comprehensive coverage of National League Division Series-bound Chicago Cubs, will be providing fans with LIVE, expanded, surrounding coverage of the Cubs huge upcoming playoff series against the arch-rival St. Louis Cardinals. 

Game 1 (Friday, October 9) and Game 2 (Saturday, October 10) of the NLDS will take place in St. Louis and Comcast SportsNet will deliver live, remote editions of Cubs Pregame Live presented by Fields Auto and Cubs Postgame Live presented by BlueCross BlueShield of Illinois featuring hosts David Kaplan (@thekapman) and Todd Hollandsworth (@hollytime28), along up-to-the-minute on-site reports from Cubs beat reporter Kelly Crull (@Kelly_Crull) and CSNChicago.com Cubs “Insider” Patrick Mooney (@CSNMooney).

Please note the following details for Comcast SportsNet’s surrounding Cubs-Cardinals NLDS coverage in St. Louis this coming weekend:

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 9

5:00 PM – Cubs Pregame Live presented by Fields Auto (LIVE from Busch Stadium in St. Louis, MO) – Hosted by David Kaplan and Todd Hollandsworth, this special 45-minute edition of Cubs Pregame Live will break down and preview Game 1 of the NLDS featuring numerous interviews, a complete series overview, a recap of regular season Cubs-Cards head-to-head highlights, along with live, on-site reports from Crull and Mooney.

NOTE: Chevy Blackhawks Pregame Live will immediately follow this program at 5:45 PM, which will air prior to CSN’s live coverage of the Blackhawks at NY Islanders match-up at 6:30 PM.

9:15 PM (time approx.) Cubs Postgame Live presented by BlueCross BlueShield of Illinois (LIVE from Busch Stadium in St. Louis, MO) – An expanded edition of Cubs Postgame Live, hosted by Kaplan and Hollandsworth, will feature Cubs manager Joe Maddon’s post-game press conference, live locker room player interviews, a complete breakdown of the Game 1, plus, additional live on-field post-game reports and much more.

NOTE: Blackhawks Postgame Live presented by HawkAuto.comis scheduled to air at approx. 9:00 PM.

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 10

4:00 PM – Cubs Pregame Live presented by Fields Auto (LIVE from Busch Stadium in St. Louis, MO…airing on CSN+) – Hosted by David Kaplan and Todd Hollandsworth, this special 45-minute edition of Cubs Pregame Live will break down and preview Game 2 of the NLDS featuring a thorough Game 1 recap, pitching match-up previews, numerous interviews, along with live, on-site reports from Crull and Mooney.

8:00 PM (time approx.) Cubs Postgame Live presented by BlueCross BlueShield of Illinois (LIVE from Busch Stadium in St. Louis, MO) – An expanded edition of Cubs Postgame Live, hosted by Kaplan and Hollandsworth, will feature Cubs manager Joe Maddon’s post-game press conference, live locker room player interviews, a complete breakdown of the Game 2, plus, additional live on-field post-game reports and much more.

NOTE: Blackhawks Postgame Live presented by HawkAuto.comis scheduled to air at approx. 9:00 PM.

IMPORTANT NOTE: On Saturday, October 10, Cubs Pregame Live and Cubs Postgame Live will air exclusively on CSN+. CSN+ is available in high-definition on Comcast/Xfinity ch. 201 in the Chicago area/South Bend, IN & on Comcast/Xfinity ch. 285 in the Peoria, Springfield, Rockford and Champaign markets, along with being made available in DIRECTV, DISH Network, AT&T U-verse, RCN, and WOW! homes among others; viewers are urged to visit CSNChicago.com’s CHANNEL FINDER  for complete channel location details. 

In addition to the comprehensive Cubs NLDS coverage on Comcast SportsNet, viewers are urged to visit CSNChicago.com throughout the playoffs even more comprehensive 24/7 coverage, including:

  • Live stream of Cubs manager Joe Maddon’s post-game press conferences (sponsored by Xfinity).
  • “Cubs Pulse presented by AT&T U-Verse,” a one-stop social media and behind-the-scenes destination that reveals the latest real time trending topics, player buzz and expert insight from Twitter and Instagram.  Plus, “Cubs Pulse” aggregates all Cubs player tweets, along with fan tweets that utilize the hashtag #CubsTalk.
  • “Cubs In-Game Live,” – featuring STATS Inc.’s enhanced Game Zone real-time tracking system – is a second screen platform for PCs, tablets and mobile devices that combine state-of-the-art infographics, data visualization of real-time statistics and game info with rich social interactivity tied to CSN Chicago’s live game broadcasts.
  • Push Alerts: CSN Chicago will deliver Cubs push notifications for breaking team and player news, “Insider” reports, plus game reminder alerts via CSN Chicago’s SportsTalk app for iOS and Android devices.
  • CubsTalk, CSNChicago.com’s high-velocity, real-time, comprehensive Cubs playoffs news and opinion section featuring original commentary, reporting and aggregation. BullsTalk is under the banner of NBC SportsTalk, NBC’s successful digital franchise on NBCSports.com that includes ProFootballTalk, HardballTalk, ProBasketballTalk, ProHockeyTalk, CollegeFootballTalk and Golf Central. SportsTalk was extended to CSNChicago.com through the creation of BlackhawksTalk, BullsTalk, CubsTalk, WhiteSoxTalk and BearsTalk, PrepsTalk and B1GTalk which contains interactive content and continually updated insights from the network’s digital and on-air talent.
  • CSNChicago.com Cubs “Insider” Patrick Mooney will provide extensive team/player news, special feature stories, and much more throughout the NLDS. Follow him on Twitter @CSNMooney for 24/7 inside access.  Cubs digital reporter and producer Tony Andracki will also provide Cubs reports/features on the beat with Mooney.  Follow @CSNCubs on Twitter for full team coverage, giveaways, fan photos and the very latest team news.
  • CSNChicago.com’s state-of-the-art “AT&T U-Verse Lounge” to provide expanded Cubs playoffs content through daily and weekly shows and segments.
  • CSNChicago.com, NBC Sports and HardBallTalk.com will also produce Cubs content in tandem, which will include on-camera segments and digital reports.
  • Yahoo: Via the Yahoo Sports – NBC Sports Network digital alliance, CSNChicago.com’s Cubs content will be available via sports.yahoo.com.
  • Cubs coverage on CSNChicago.com/Cubs is presented by Toyota.

NOTE: Comcast SportsNet’s surrounding coverage details for GAME 3 on Monday, Oct. 12 (and GAMES 4 & 5 if nec.) will be announced directly on CSNChicago.com

Unfinished Bears job a 'bitter pill' for John Fox, but the legacy lies beyond just the W-L record

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USA TODAY

Unfinished Bears job a 'bitter pill' for John Fox, but the legacy lies beyond just the W-L record

When John Fox succeeded Marc Trestman in 2015, neither he nor the Bears were looking at the situation and Fox as any sort of “bridge” hire – a de facto interim coach tasked with winning, but just as importantly, developing and getting a team turned around and headed in a right direction.

The heart of the matter is always winning, but in the overall, the mission statement also includes leaving the place better than you found it. Fox did that, which is very clearly the sentiment upstairs at Halas Hall as the Bears move on from Fox to Matt Nagy.

“It would’ve been nice to see it through,” Fox said to NBC Sports Chicago. “That’s kind of a bitter pill but you sort things out and move forward.

“I do think it’s closer than people think. We inherited a mess... but I felt we were on the brink at the end. I think that [Halas Hall] building is definitely different; they feel it. I do think that it was a positive.”

(Fox is probably not done coaching at some point, but that’s for another time, another story, and anyway, it’s his tale to tell when he feels like it. Or doesn’t.)

One measure of the Bears change effected: Virtually the entire Trestman staff, with the exceptions of receivers coach Mike Groh and linebackers coach Clint Hurtt, was jettisoned along with Trestman. By contrast, Nagy has retained not only virtually the entire Fox defensive staff under coordinator Vic Fangio, but also arguably the single most important non-coordinator offensive coach by virtue of position responsibility – Dave Ragone, the hands-on mentor of quarterback Mitch Trubisky.

Obvious but extremely difficult decisions are coming, as to shedding personnel and contracts – Josh Sitton, Pernell McPhee, Willie Young being among the most difficult because of tangible intangibles that no organization wants to lose.

“Bridge” results

Fox was never intended as a bridge coach but the results point to that function having been served. To exactly what end remains to play out under Nagy and the quarterback whom Ragone and Fox’s handling began developing.

Rick Renteria was one of those “bridge” guys for the Cubs, intended to be part of pulling out of or at least arresting the slide into the Mike Quade-Dale Sveum abyss, and leaving something for Joe Maddon. The late Vince Lombardi effectively served as that, at age 56 and for an unforeseen one-year for a Washington Redskins organization that’d gone 13 years without a winning season before Lombardi’s 1969 and needed a radical reversal. The culture change was realized over the next decade under George Allen and Jack Pardee, much of the success coming with the same players with whom Washington had languished before the culture change.

The Bears were in that state after the two years of Trestman and the three years of GM Phil Emery, certain of whose character-lite veteran player acquisitions (Martellus Bennett, Brandon Marshall) and high-character launchings (Brian Urlacher) had left a palpable pall over Halas Hall. A Fox goal was to eradicate that, which insiders in Lake Forest say privately was accomplished even amid the catastrophic crush of three straight seasons of 10 or more losses, and with injuries at historic levels.

What happens next is in the hands of Nagy and GM Ryan Pace, after a third John Fox franchise turnaround failed to materialize. Or did it? Because much of the core, from Trubisky through the defensive makeover, came on Fox’s watch, like him or not.

“You wish some things would’ve happened differently obviously,” Fox said, “but there was a lot positive that happened.”

Blackhawks ban four ejected fans from future home games

Blackhawks ban four ejected fans from future home games

The Blackhawks have banned the four fans — who were ejected from Saturday's game against the Washington Capitals for their racist remarks towards Capitals forward Devante Smith-Pelly — from future home games.

On Monday, a Blackhawks spokesperson released this statement:

We have contacted the select individuals involved in the incident on Saturday to notify them that they are no longer welcome at our home games. Racist comments and other inappropriate behavior are not tolerated by the Chicago Blackhawks.

The Blackhawks also wanted to remind fans that they can alert security at the United Center by texting the following to 69050: UCASSIST <SPACE> followed by the seating section, row and a brief description of the issue.