Preps Talk

Word on the Street: Putz headed to Arizona

Word on the Street: Putz headed to Arizona

Monday, Dec. 6, 2010
CSNChicago.com

Putz headed to Arizona

J.J. Putz provided a veteran presence to the White Sox' bullpen last season, but this year, he is reportedly taking his talents to Arizona to pitch for the Diamondbacks. Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com tweeted out Monday evening that Putz signed a two-year deal with the Diamondbacks with a club option, pending a physical. (Twitter.comKen Rosenthal)
Cubs inquire about Loney

The Cubs have reportedly inquired about Los Angeles Dodgers left-handed first baseman James Loney. Loney, who will be 27 next season, is coming off the worst year of his young career. He hit .267 with 10 home runs and 88 RBIs in 2010. His career batting average is .288 with a .348 OBP and .436 SLG. (LA Times)

Reinsdorf planning informal talk with Konerko

White Sox board chairman Jerry Reinsdorf said he would talk with the agent for Paul Konerko on Monday morning, but only informally and that assistant general manager Rick Hahn would take over negotiations.

Konerko made 12 million last season and finished fifth in American League MVP voting, which would likely get him a raise. Rumors have him ultimately settling for about 13 million for each of two or three years.

Hahn is the chief negotiator when it comes to contracts for the Sox. In fact, a last-minute phone call kept A. J. Pierzynski from signing last week with another team, presumably the Dodgers. A creative deal quickly was worked out to bring back Pierzynski, one paying him 2 million next season and 6 million in 2012.

That could help free up the money to sign Konerko, something that could happen this week at the winter meetings," (ChicagoBreakingSports).

Kane injury 'not real serious.'

Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane will probably "be out for a little bit," according to coach Joel Quenneville, after sustaining what appeared to be a left-leg injury early in Sunday night's game against the Calgary Flames.

Quenneville wouldn't put a definitive amount of time on how long Kane would be out, other than to say he'd be out for "a bit" and that the injury was "not real serious," (CSNChicago.com).

Notre Dame will meet Miami in Sun Bowl

Notre Dame and Miami have accepted invitations to meet in the Sun Bowl on Dec. 31, giving the game a marquee matchup between two teams with plenty of history.

Both teams will take 7-5 records into the 77th annual game.

The game will mark the 24th meeting between the schools, but the first since 1990. It was announced in July that the schools were renewing their spirited and often fierce regular-season series with three games beginning in 2012 at Soldier Field in Chicago.

Notre Dame leads the all-time series 15-7-1, though the two schools have never met in a bowl, (Associated Press).

Gillick elected to Hall of Fame

Pat Gillick, whose teams won three World Series, was elected to the Hall of Fame by the Expansion Era committee Monday at baseball's winter meetings.

Gillick was general manager of the Blue Jays, Orioles, Mariners and Phillies, besides being in the front offices with the Astros and Yankees, (ChicagoBreakingSports).

Playoff drama highlights a busy week on High School Lites

Playoff drama highlights a busy week on High School Lites

High School Lites had a busy show as it was the final week of the regular season for IHSA boys basketball Class 3A and 4A. The Class 1A and 2A playoffs also tipped in boys basketball as the show has some thrilling regional titles that were decided in the final minute. And finally, the girls basketball Class 1A and 2A state semifinals were played on Friday as the state's top teams played in Bloomington.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter @NBCSPreps for the latest news and scores for IHSA basketball.

Wintrust Athlete of the Week: Richards wrestler Mia Palumbo

Saint Xavier Team of the Week: Simeon boys basketball

Highlights

Marshall shocks Leo in Class 2A regional final

Aurora Christian runs past Harvert Christian for 1A regional title

Buzzer-beater lifts Monticello over Gibson City for regional title

Jacobs goes unbeaten in Fox Valley with win over Dundee-Crown

West Aurora gets by rival East Aurora

Yorkville completes season sweep of DeKalb

Lemont escapes past T.F. North

Marshall needs OT to get past Teutopolis in girls 2A semifinals

Harlan takes down Eureka in 2A semifinals

Stockton runs by Okaw Valley in 1A

Schlarman races by Lebanon

Three Things to Watch: Blackhawks hit road to face Blue Jackets

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NBC Sports Chicago

Three Things to Watch: Blackhawks hit road to face Blue Jackets

Here are Three Things to Watch when the Blackhawks take on the Columbus Blue Jackets tonight on NBC Sports Chicago and streaming live on the NBC Sports app. Coverage begins at 5:30 p.m. with Blackhawks Pregame Live.

1. One big reunion.

The Blackhawks will square off with the Blue Jackets for the first time since Oct. 7, which was the second game of the season. In that game, they won 5-1 led by Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Brandon Saad, each of whom scored a goal and added an assist.

Of course, that was the first game since the offseason trade that sent Artemi Panarin to Columbus and Saad back to Chicago, along with Anton Forsberg. Artem Anisimov, of course, was part of the original deal that sent Saad to Columbus in 2015, so there are a lot of emotional ties between the two teams.

Forsberg didn't get a chance to face the Blue Jackets in the first meeting, but there's a chance he will this time with it being the second of a back-to-back and Jean-Francois Berube getting the start in Friday's 3-1 win over San Jose.

2. Panarin and Kane bromance.

The emotions of a difficult break-up have probably died down by now, but Panarin and Kane gave us this moment at center ice during pregame warmups in their first game against each other and it hit Chicago right in the feels:

Panarin has spent enough time apart from Kane for people to realize how big of a star he is in his own right, leading the Blue Jackets in all three scoring categories: goals (17), assists (32) and points (49).

He hasn't gone more than three games this season without recording a point, and is looking to extend his point streak to four games, which would tie a season high.

3. Struggling Blue Jackets special teams.

The Blue Jackets got off to a great start but are barely clinging onto a wild card spot going into Saturday's game, and a big reason for that slide is their lack of success on special teams. Usually one can pick up the slack for the other, but they've been brutal in both departments.

The Blue Jackets are 0-for-9 on the power play in their past five games and are ranked 31st overall, converting on only 14.1 percent of their opportunities. They also have own the 27th-ranked penalty kill with a 76.3 percent success rate.

So if there's an area the Blackhawks can exploit, it's that. But, you know, still be mindful of that Russian winger's one-timer from the faceoff circle.