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Badgers hold off No. 2 Indiana for 64-59 upset

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Badgers hold off No. 2 Indiana for 64-59 upset

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) Wisconsin played Tuesday night like it always does - defended everything, made big shots and limited the turnovers.

Indiana looked like anything but its usual self.

It was just another chapter in a series filled with strange twists.

Ryan Evans scored 13 points, Traevon Jackson added 11 and the unranked Badgers moved into sole possession of the Big Ten lead with a 64-59 upset at No. 2 Indiana.

``We're feeling good about ourselves right now,'' Badgers forward Jared Berggren said. ``It shows we can beat anyone, anywhere, anytime; so I think it shows what we're capable of.''

Especially if the Badgers (13-4, 4-0) keep playing this way.

Wisconsin has won seven straight and has beaten two top-15 teams in four days. It is the last unbeaten team in Big Ten play.

All the Badgers needed to do against Indiana was hold the nation's highest-scoring team to its fewest points of the season, its worst shooting performance of the season and end its 18-game home winning streak.

Mission accomplished.

Wisconsin became the first team to win 11 straight in a series with Indiana since the Badgers last did it in 1919, and the first team to win five straight in Bloomington since Purdue last did that in 1923. No team has ever won six straight on Indiana's home court and only Purdue, from 1908-14, has won 12 in a row against the Hoosiers.

The Badgers just stuck to the game plan.

``We knew that if they got it going in transition they can score in bunches. All you have to do is look at their game films,'' Bo Ryan said, acknowledging he coached with flu-like symptoms. ``Our goal was not to let that happen, but saying it and doing it, having it as a plan, are two different things. It just so happened to work tonight.''

Indiana (15-2, 3-1) felt ill for another reason.

The Hoosiers scored only three fast-break points and watched the Badgers toss in shot-clock beating 3-pointers. Indiana came into the game averaging a Big Ten-leading 17 assists per game, yet managed only seven against the Badgers.

And instead of pressuring Wisconsin into miscues, the Badgers committed just eight turnovers.

Cody Zeller, who made all eight of his shots and had 18 points in the first half, finished with 23 points and 10 rebounds and made only one basket in the second half. Christian Watford had 11 points, and Victor Oladipo had 10.

``That's their style of play. We just didn't defend the dribble well enough, didn't make enough shots,'' Zeller said. ``That's what it boils down to.''

The Badgers followed the script perfectly. They limited the mistakes, took advantage of seemingly every opportunity they got, especially in the second half as Hoosiers fans moaned and groaned about everything from missed shots to errant passes.

Indiana rallied late in the first half to take a 32-31 halftime lead, then opened the second half with a three-point play to make it 35-31. The home crowd figured it was going to be the start of a big run.

Instead, Wisconsin gave up only six points over the next 6:34, a drought that allowed Wisconsin to retake a 38-37 lead with a 7-0 run. A few minutes later, the Badgers were off on a 9-0 spurt that ended when Mike Bruesewitz's 3 beat the shot-clock buzzer to make it 47-39. It was 51-41 before the Hoosiers finally cranked up the pressure.

``When you get momentum going, it's amazing what can happen,'' coach Tom Crean said. ``They played really hard and they got the momentum.''

Indiana looked like it had swung the momentum back in its direction when it scored four straight and after Evans made 1 of 2 free throws, they answered with a 6-0 spurt - the final basket a 3-pointer from Yogi Ferrell that cut the lead to 52-51 with 4:40 to go.

But that was as close as Indiana got.

Ben Brust made a 17-foot jumper and the Badgers closed it out with a game-ending 12-8 run.

``If you just play the game and have the right attitude about it, you make good things happen,'' Ryan said. ``Players have to play.''

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Get to know newest Capitals defenseman Michal Kempny

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Get to know newest Capitals defenseman Michal Kempny

On Monday, with the NHL trade deadline approaching, the Washington Capitals addressed a need for blue line depth by acquiring Michal Kempny from the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for a conditional third-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft.

But before you begin to analyze how the move impacts the Capitals' outlook heading forward, lets take some time to get to know the newest member of the Caps.

Who is Michal Kempny?

Michal Kempny is a 27-year-old defenseman from the Czech Republic. He was born on Sept. 8, 1990 in Hodonin, a small town in southwestern Czech Republic near the border of Austria and Slovakia. Kempny began his hockey career playing for SHK Hodonin. Kempny knew very little english upon arriving to the NHL, but credited his girlfriend Showtime shows to helping him become more comfortable speaking the language. 

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What International Experience Does Michal Kempny Have?

Michal Kempny played professionally for HC Kometa Brno of the Czech Extraliga and Avangard Omsk of the Kontinental Hockey League. Kempny was a standout player on the international stage, playing for the Czech Republic U18, U20 and Men's National teams.

MORE ON THE TRADE: WHERE DOES KEMPNY FIT IN THE CAPS ROSTER

When Did Michal Kempny Make His NHL Debut?

Michal Kempny was signed to a one-year contract as an undrafted free agent by the Chicago Blackhawks in May, 2016 and made his NHL debut in October, 2016. Kempny scored his first NHL goal on Dec. 30, 2016 against Carolina Hurricanes goalie Cam Ward. Kempny appeared in 50 games for the Blackhawks during the 2016-17 season, recording two goals and six assists. The Blackhawks re-signed Kempny to a one-year extension during the offseason. Kempny played in 31 games this season before being traded to the Capitals.

What Type of Hockey Player is Michal Kempny?

Kempny is a 6-0, 194-pound defenseman with a strong left-handed shot. Known for his play on the offensive end, Kempny was never able to gain the trust of Joel Quenneville on the defensive end. But Kempny has a good bit of offensive upside, thanks to his passing skills and strong shot, which is why the Blackhawks took a flier on him in the first place and why he was an ideal trade candidate for the Capitals. But again, Kempny's size is less than ideal for a top-tier blue-liner and while he doesn't shy away from contact, he is rarely much of a physical presence. 

What Does Michal Kempny's Contract Look Like?

Michael Kempny is set to become an unrestricted free agent the the end of the 2017-18 season and has a cap hit of just $900,000.

RELATED: TROTZ REACTS TO RACIAL COMMENTS MADE BY CHICAGO FANS

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Its Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

Its Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

So if you have not heard, Bryce Harper is going to be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2018 season.

All off-season talking heads, baseball aficionados, radio hosts, etc. were speculating on where the outfielder’s destination will be next year.

And we are still a year away from it actually happening.

RELATED: VEGAS SETS OVER/UNDERS FOR 2018 MLB SEASON

Reporting to spring training on Monday, Harper did not waste any time telling the media how his press conferences were going to play out this season.

“If guys do [ask], or talk anything about that, I will be walking right out the door.”

Entering his seventh season with the Washington Nationals, the 25-year-old is coming off the second-best season, statistically, of his career. The 2015 NL MVP has hit .285 in his career, with 150 home runs and 421 RBIs. Unquestionably he is the face of the Nationals’ organization, if not, the best player in the team’s history.

If he does end the season without a contract extension, he will join Rafael Palmeiro, Alex Rodriguez, Randy Johnson, and Barry Bonds as the top sought out free agents in MLB history.

One thing is for certain in terms of Harper’s free agency; Harper has given no inclination on where his landing spot will be.  The top three cities are of course his favorite childhood team, the New York Yankees; joining with one of his closest friends with the Chicago Cubs; or just staying with Washington.

Wherever he does land, it does appear that it will be the largest contract given to a free agent ever.

As for now we just wait and direct any of your calls to his agent Scott Boras.

READ ALSO: NATIONALS FULL SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE