By JJ Stankevitz
Dominic Oduro was named the Fire's most valuable playerBudweiser Golden Boot recipient as voted on by local media and the Fire's technical staff, while Cory Gibbs was named the team's defender of the year and Steven Kinney received the Fire Humanitarian of the Year award. The trio will be honored before Saturday's season finale against Columbus.
After being acquired by the Fire from Houston in late March, Oduro netted 12 goals for the Fire, tied for the fifth-highest total in MLS. Gibbs was a rock on the back line for the Fire and scored the squad's only goal in a July 23 friendly against English Premier League powerhouse Manchester United.
Kinney missed the entire 2011 season due to an Achilles' injury, but was recognized for his work with the Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago.
The Fire were officially eliminated from the playoffs Thursday night when New York defeated Philadelphia 1-0.
According to Yahoo Sports, Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash over Calabasas Sunday morning.
TMZ Sports first reported the news. Shortly afterwards, the Los Angeles County Sheriffs confirmed the crash:
ABC 7 News and ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski both later confirmed the report that Bryant was among those that perished:
Bryant played 20 years in the NBA, all with the Los Angeles Lakers, winning five NBA championships, two MVPs and appearing in 15 All-Star games. He is survived by his wife, Vanessa, and four daughters.
The story appears to still be developing, but this is heartbreaking and stunning news for the basketball world at large, and, above all, Bryant's family.
Attention Dish and Sling customers! You have lost your Bulls games on NBC Sports Chicago. To switch providers, visit mysportschicago.com.
Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Bulls easily on your device.
Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins spoke with Chicago Sun-Times reporter Patrick Finley at the 2020 Pro Bowl and offered a glowing review of Bears quarterback coach, John DeFilippo, whose addition to Chicago's coaching staff is expected to bring the best out of Mitch Trubisky, the Bears' incumbent starter who's entering a make-or-break offseason with the team.
“He’ll be outstanding,” Cousins said. “He’s a great coach. He’s been around this league for a long time. I think it says a lot when someone like Matt Nagy, who knows quarterbacks so well, hires him. I think that says a lot about ‘Flip.’
“When you look at what he did with Carson Wentz as a young player, I think there’s a lot to like there. And he’s going to add a lot to that staff. It’s going to be to my detriment, because we’re in his division. But he’s a great coach.”
DeFilippo was the Eagles quarterback coach for two seasons (2016-17) and played an integral part in Wentz's development between his rookie and second seasons. Under his DeFilippo's tutelage, Wentz went from enjoying a solid rookie season to an MVP-worthy campaign in 2017. It's also noteworthy that DeFilippo managed to get the best out of veteran Nick Foles, who replaced Wentz after a season-ending injury. Foles went on to enjoy a miraculous Super Bowl run.
DeFilippo certainly has his work cut out for him with Trubisky. The former second-overall pick has looked like an average starter (at best) through 41 regular-season starts and regressed mightily in 2019. Blame for his regression has been shared among the offensive line and play-calling, but he deserves much of the criticism too. His mechanics were sloppy, his accuracy was lacking and he just didn't play with the kind of downfield killer instinct Nagy wants from his starter.
Nagy's end-of-year comments about Trubisky needing to learn how to identify coverages didn't create much confidence in his near-term trajectory, either.
But that's why DeFilippo is in town. And if Cousins' comments prove to be true, then we may be on the precipice of a breakout season from Trubisky.
Or maybe DeFilippo will be the tie-breaking voice that allows the Bears to move on if Trubisky's struggles continue.