Blackhawks

Word on the Street: Cubs to consider Cliff Lee?

Word on the Street: Cubs to consider Cliff Lee?

Saturday, Oct. 23, 2010
CSNChicago.com

Cliff Lee to the Cubs?

It may be unlikely, but Joel Sherman of the New York Post wrote Friday that the Cubs could be among the three or four potential suitors for the lefty this offseason. Over the last two seasons, Lee has led two different clubs through the difficult final months of the regular season and deep into the playoffs. Sherman speculates that his success in leading the Phillies and Rangers deep into the postseason could spur more teams into the hunt for Lee this winter - including the Cubs. (NYPost)

Blackhawks recall Brophey

The Chicago Blackhawks have recalled forward Evan Brophey from the American Hockey League's Rockford IceHogs.

Brophey, 23, has appeared in all six of Rockford's regular-season contests this season, scoring two goals and pacing the IceHogs with a 4 rating. Chicago's fourth selection (68th overall) in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, the Kitchener, Ontario, native has registered 36 goals and 56 assists over the course of 238 career regular-season AHL tilts with Rockford from 2007-10. (sbnation.com)
NBA looks to cut salary by 800 million

Sports fans may find themselves in a strange predicament in 2011 as both the NBA and NFL seem to be heading towards lockouts. The NBA, which currently spends 2.1 billion per year on player salaries and benefits, wants to cut player salaries by around 800 million to help make the league profitable once again. The league claims it lost 400 million last year and expects to lose about 350 million this year.

"We would like to get profitable, have a return on investment," NBA commissioner David Stern said Thursday. "There's a swing of somewhere in the neighborhood of 750 to 800 million that we would like to change." (NY Daily News)

NFL: Favre investigation ongoing

The NFL says it is still investigating allegations that Vikings quarterback Brett Favre sent inappropriate photos and text messages to former New York Jets game hostess Jenn Sterger in 2008 when Favre played for the team. Sterger's manager told the Associated Press that she is "strongly considering" talking to the NFL officials conducting the investigation. (ChicagoBreakingSports)

Sox's Hahn not going to New York

The New York Mets said Friday that they have narrowed their search for a new general manager to two names; Sandy Alderson and Josh Byrnes. White Sox assistant general manager Rick Hahn had previously been rumored to be a candidate for the job but is now apparently out of the running. (ChicagoBreakingSports)

Briggs likely to play vs. Redskins

Though he was limited in practice on Thursday, it looks like Pro Bowl linebacker Lance Briggs will be healthy enough to play in Sunday's game against the Washington Redskins. Briggs was held out of last week's game against Seattle with a sprained ankle.
(NationalFootballPost.com)

Ex-Rams WR: Martz can be too stubborn

Ex-Rams wide receiver Ricky Proehl played under Mike Martz for five years in St. Louis, including the 1999 "Greatest Show on Turf" Super Bowl championship season. Proehl, no doubt, benefited from Martz's pass-heavy offensive mindset, but as he told "The Danny Mac Show" on WSCR-AM 670, he believes Martz is sometimes too stubborn for his own good.

Proehl pointed to something Martz told the Rams during their 20-17 Super Bowl XXXVI loss to the New England Patriots.

"New England did a great job game-planning our offense and they showed blitz and dropped into zone," Proehl said. "They basically rushed three and dropped eight. His comment was, "We're going to throw the football anyway," and that kind of upset us as players." (ChicagoBreakingSports)

More ex-Hawks get their rings

Blackhawks vice president Alan Maclsacc flew to Atlanta on Friday to personally deliver Dusting Byfuglien, Brent Sopel, Andrew Ladd, John Torchetti and Ben Eager their 2009 championship rings. (Chicago.SBNation.com)

Cubs to sign Adam Dunn?

Baseball agent Matt Sosnick said in an interview that he believes the Cubs are the most likely destination for free agent outfielderfirst baseman Adam Dunn. Dunn played for the Nationals in 2010 and put up a .260 batting average with 38 homers and 103 runs batted in.

"If I was going to guess, I would say Adam Dunn is probably going to the Cubs, and he'll probably get, you know, 3 years and 40 million bucks," said Sosnick. (ChicagoNow)

Cue Chelsea Dagger: Blackhawks blow out Capitals to snap eight-game losing streak

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USA TODAY

Cue Chelsea Dagger: Blackhawks blow out Capitals to snap eight-game losing streak

Win one game.

That was Joel Quenneville’s message during the Blackhawks’ eight-game losing streak, which finally came to an end on Saturday night.

How about a 7-1 victory over the Washington Capitals on home ice for a streak-breaker? Now that’s more like it.

Prior to Saturday, the Blackhawks hadn’t recorded a win in February — or a win at the United Center since Jan. 12. 

Though the Blackhawks will likely miss the playoffs for the first time since Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane were rookies, a blowout win over the leaders of the Metropolitan Division Capitals had to have felt great.

"It’s a nice way to get over the hump," Toews said. "Sometimes you might just win a 2-1 game or just kind of grind it out, but it was nice for us to fill the net the way we did tonight."

Added Joel Quenneville, "Certainly feels 100 times better than coming in and trying to explain how we had a lead and were unable to sustain it. The complete 60 minutes, three periods the right way, more consistency in our game, way more pace than we’ve seen recently, composure with the puck, shooting around the net. It was fun but that’s one. Let’s see how we respond to this because there’s a lot of hockey left."

The Blackhawks are 25-26-8 with 58 points, and are 11 points out the final wild card spot, currently held by the Minnesota Wild.

Among the highlights:

— Seven different Blackhawks scored: Toews, Kane, Alex DeBrincat, Brandon Saad, Artem Anisimov, Nick Schmaltz, Ryan Hartman

— The Blackhawks are 74-6-4 in the regular season in which Kane and Toews both record a goal — and 41-0-0 in their last 41 games, according to NBC Sports Chicago stats guru Chris Kamka.

— Kane registered career assist No. 500, becoming the sixth Blackhawk with 500 or more. Kane is also the seventh U.S.-born player with 300-plus goals and 500-plus assists, joining Mike Modano, Keith Tkachuk, Jeremy Roenick, Pat LaFontaine, Joe Mullen and Phil Housley, according to Kamka.

"You think about the amount of great Americans that have played the game, how many players actually play hockey in the United States... Growing up all I wanted to do was play hockey," Kane said. "That means a lot, especially when you talk about American-born players."

— DeBrincat's 22nd goal of the season has him tied for the rookie-lead with Tampa Bay Lightning's Yanni Gourde. DeBrincat and Kane also lead the Blackhawks with 22 goals.

Lauri Markkanen nearly 'Finnishes' in Skills Challenge against former Bull Spencer Dinwiddie

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USA TODAY

Lauri Markkanen nearly 'Finnishes' in Skills Challenge against former Bull Spencer Dinwiddie

Los Angeles—Lauri Markkanen called himself “The Finnisher” when asked what the movie of his life would be called.

Apparently, that moniker didn’t apply to the All-Star Skills challenge as he took down the best big men but couldn’t close against a former Bull, Spencer Dinwiddie, in the final.

The contest highlights players’ ability to dribble around cones shaped like NBA logos, throwing a chest pass into a net while having to complete a layup and then 3-pointer before their opponent does.

Markkanen took down Detroit’s Andre Drummond and Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid before facing off with Dinwiddie. He held a pose after hitting a triple to beat the uber confident Embiid, in what will likely be used as a memorable gif following the weekend.

His confidence doesn’t come across as blatantly as Embiid’s, but that snapshot shows he’s no humble star in the making. He didn’t even practice for the contest, by his own admission.

“I heard some of the guys did,” Markkanen said. “I didn’t do much, just before the competition, I did a little warm-up.”

Missing on the first pass attempt into the circular net in the final, it gave Dinwiddie the advantage he wouldn’t relinquish, hitting on his second 3-point attempt before Markkanen could make it downcourt to contest.

“It’s a lot harder than I’ve seen,” Markkanen said. “I thought it was gonna be super easy but it was kind of tough. Maybe I need to hold my follow through (on the pass).”

“I saw he missed (the first shot) and I started going. I thought he would’ve missed it too. I think I would’ve gotten it on the third shot.”

Being one of the multi-dimensional big men in today’s game who can be adept on the perimeter as well as the interior, it almost seems like the contest was made for Markkanen. Although he doesn’t do much handling in Fred Hoiberg’s offense, it’s clearly a skill he will develop as time goes on.

The last two winners of the skills challenge were Karl-Anthony Towns and Kristaps Porzingis, and Markkanen was well aware of the recent trend.

“The last two years the bigs have won,” Markkanen said. “I’m kind of pissed that I couldn’t keep the streak going after (those two). I think there’s a lot of guys who can do that now, it’s why they changed the format to bigs versus smalls.”

For Dinwiddie, who was discarded by the Bulls last season after a promising start in the preseason so they could pick up R.J. Hunter, he’s taken advantage of an opportunity with Brooklyn.

“I think for Chicago it was just another series of unfortunate events,” he said. “They were in win-now mode. I was an unproven guard on a non-guaranteed contract and they felt Michael Carter-Williams gave them a better shot to win.”