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An update on Adrian Peterson's condition

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An update on Adrian Peterson's condition

From Comcast SportsNet
MANKATO, Minn. (AP) -- The Minnesota Vikings are aiming to put Adrian Peterson in for some exhibition game carries before they clear him for the regular-season opener. In order to get to that point, the star running back will have to start practicing. That could come next week. The coaching and medical staffs will evaluate Peterson's left knee after the Vikings return from San Francisco, the site of their first preseason game Friday night. "I'm looking forward to being out here pretty soon. I've been out for like two weeks, and it's time to get going," said Peterson, who tore the anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments last December. "I know that they understand that, and they've been watching and they've been getting good feedback. So I'm sure they are pretty much as excited as I am." Coach Leslie Frazier said Peterson's pushing to join the team for practice has been "never ending," but Peterson said Wednesday he's let up on his lobbying. "Everything I'm hearing is extremely positive so we'll see where we are," Frazier said. The date that matters most is Sept. 9, when the Vikings (No. 29 in the AP Pro32) play Jacksonville to start the season. Frazier said again there's no indication Peterson won't be able to take part in that game. "Everything he's done he's right on point, but I say that without him ever participating in a drill with his teammates," Frazier said, declining to commit to a certain number of practices Peterson will need before he's allowed to play in the preseason. The Vikings don't want his first big blow from a defender to come in a game that counts. They'd rather him get that out of the way in August. Peterson said he thinks that would help him. "I'm ready to get hit. It might sound strange, but just to get that feel," Peterson said, pointing to his patellar tendon area in particular. That still "feels funny" as part of the recovery from the injury. So whenever he returns to the backfield, he'll continue to apply his "don't waste today" mindset toward the rehabilitation work, knowing it will all pay off once he's able to start taking those handoffsl again. "Anytime they give me the ball, I'll be ready to tote the load," Peterson said. Peterson also said he won't have to return to Houston for court, where he has a resisting arrest charge against him from a closing-time incident at a nightclub there last month. Hearings are scheduled for Sept. 27 and Nov. 15, but his attorney will represent him. "I feel like we're in a good position right now. The most important thing is no more interruptions. So it won't interfere with what's going on with the Minnesota Vikings, my team, so we'll just see how things play out," Peterson said.

4.19.18 Rick Horrow The Sports Professor talks with Joe Leccese, Chairman ProSkauer

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USA TODAY Sports

4.19.18 Rick Horrow The Sports Professor talks with Joe Leccese, Chairman ProSkauer

Rick Horrow The Sports Professor sits down for an exclusive interview with Joe Leccese -- and more from the $1 trillion-dollar business of sports in this week's 'Beyond The Scoreboard with Rick Horrow'

About the Guest: Joe Leccese is the Chairman of Proskauer. He is responsible for leading the Firm’s global operations across its 13 offices and co-heads of Proskauer’s renowned Sports Law Group.

By Rick Horrow

Podcast producer: Tanner Simkins

LISTEN HERE

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The Caps' penalty kill has been a major factor in the series turnaround

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USA TODAY Sports

The Caps' penalty kill has been a major factor in the series turnaround

For the Capitals to beat the Columbus Blue Jackets, one of the keys to the series was going to be the penalty kill. 

For the season, Columbus ranked only 25th in the league on the power play at 17.2-percent, but that number did not reflect the massive improvement the Blue Jackets made with their trade deadline acquisitions.

Since the trade deadline on Feb. 26, Columbus ranked seventh on the power play. The Caps were sixth with both teams converting 25.0-percent of the time.

Where Washington did have an edge, seemingly, was on the penalty kill. Unlike the power play, Columbus' penalty kill was consistently poor all season, finishing 27th in the NHL with a kill rate of only 76.2-percent. While not a strength by any means, the Caps were certainly better on the PK with a kill rate of 80.3-percent, good for 15th in the league.

With two power plays converting at the same rate, Washington had to be able to kill off more of the Blue Jackets' opportunities. They struggled to do that in Game 1 and Game 2.

The Caps were called for four penalties and gave up two power play goals in each of the first two games. Washington scored five power play goals in those games, but their advantage on special teams was mitigated by their inability to keep Columbus from converting. 

There are many reasons why the Caps were able to overcome the 0-2 series deficit and now sit just one win away from advancing to the second round. Chief among those reasons is the improved penalty kill. Since Game 2, Washington has not allowed a single power play goal. The PK has successfully killed off 13 straight penalties including five in Game 5.

"I think as a group, they've all stepped up," Barry Trotz said on a conference call with the media on Sunday. "I don't think I can single out anybody. They've all stepped up. The penalty kill is as good as the five guys that you have, your four and your goaltender. They've been very committed there."

In a series that has seen four out of five games go to overtime, it's not hard to recognize the impact even one goal can have on a game and, by extension, the series. Should the Caps go on to win the series, their ability to adjust their penalty kill to stop the Blue Jackets' suddenly potent power play will be one of the main reasons why.

Trotz would not go into specifics as to the adjustments the team made after Game 2, but did acknowledge the penalty kill has been a "major factor" in the Caps' turnaround this series.

But to finish the job, the penalty kill will have to continue adjusting.

"This is the time when we're still trying to tweak things," Trotz said. "They changed some things on their power play a little bit yesterday, so we'll look to maybe tweak a little bit with our PK."