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ICYMI: Cubs' plan for Craig Kimbrel; Lucas Giolito continues dominance; Virginia McCaskey Q&A

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO

ICYMI: Cubs' plan for Craig Kimbrel; Lucas Giolito continues dominance; Virginia McCaskey Q&A

The Cubs revealed their plan for closer Craig Kimbrel, Lucas Giolito continued his brilliance on the mound and NBC Sports Chicago sat down with Virginia McCaskey, who offered insight and stories from 100 years of football. Here's what you may have missed from the weekend in Chicago sports:

Cubs

The Cubs officially announced the signing of Craig Kimbrel on Friday, revealing their plan for him moving forward at his introductory press conference. The entire press conference is available on this episode of the Cubs Talk Podcast.

Two interesting points from the press conference include: how Jason Heyward and David Ross helped convince Kimbrel to sign with the Cubs and the importance of Cubs fans in his decision. And while Kimbrel is terrific, there are some concerns that come with signing him.

According to Joe Maddon, the Cubs starting rotation "is the engine that's gonna drive the vehicle." Maddon also discussed how the team plans to manage the second base rotation. 

A locked-in Kyle Schwarber has locked down the Cubs' leadoff spot.

The Cubs reportedly agreed to terms with first round draft pick Ryan Jensen. Plus, the team held a Jon Lester themed flight to the west coast.

On the latest Cubs Talk Podcast, Kelly Crull caught up with David Bote and Carlos Gonzalez, while Leila Rahimi talked to Peter Gammons about the tough NL Central.

White Sox

Lucas Giolito continued his dominance for the White Sox, throwing 7 1/3 scoreless innings on Saturday in a 2-0 win over the Royals. The White Sox won the rubber match against the Royals on Sunday, highlighted by a long home run by Eloy Jimenez.

James McCann has been raking at the plate for the White Sox, putting him amongst the best catchers in the American League. In less positive news, Dylan Covey hit the injured list on Sunday, opening up a spot in the team's starting rotation.

Bears

NBC Sports Chicago had a chance to sit down with Bears matriarch Virginia McCaskey at this weekend's Bears100 Celebration. McCaskey shared a number of memories, stories and insight from 100 years of Bears football.

McCaskey is still eminently capable of charing a mass audience, which she did as part of a panel at the convention. Also from the convention: the five best things heard on Friday, why Gary Fencik appreciates Matt Nagy and an inside look at how the Bears came to acquire Khalil Mack.

Friday, the Bears officially unveiled a new throwback uniform that they will wear in 2019. Saturday, the "Punky QB" met the "Pretty Boy Assassin." 

Will Devin Hester be the next Bears legend to make the Hall of Fame? And could one of the largest tight ends in NFL history be a solution to the Bears' depth issues?

Other

NBC Sports Chicago's Blackhawks beat writer Charlie Roumeliotis answers fan questions in the latest Blackhawks mailbag.

NBA mock draft: If the Bulls trade back with the Hawks, who might they target?

Rajon Rondo opened up on his Bulls tenure and getting benched by Fred Hoiberg.

Sports Talk Live Podcast: MLB sign-stealing scandal continues

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USA TODAY

Sports Talk Live Podcast: MLB sign-stealing scandal continues

David Haugh, Hub Arkush and Matt Spiegel join Leila Rahimi on the panel.

0:00- MLB's sign-stealing scandal continues to dominate the sports world as Carlos Beltran is let go by the Mets. So what could possibly happen next? And Commissioner Spiegel gives his plan for riding the game of this menace.

14:00- The Bears keep adding new offensive coaches. Will they make Mitch Trubisky better?

23:00- Can the Titans pull off another huge upset or is the Chiefs' offense unstoppable? And can Aaron Rodgers find a way to beat the 49ers defense? The panel dissects the conference title games and weighs in on the latest controversy surrounding Odell Beckham, Jr.

Listen to the full podcast here or via the embedded player below:

Sports Talk Live Podcast

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Houston Texans DE JJ Watt’s fiancée Kealia Ohai traded to the Red Stars

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USA TODAY

Houston Texans DE JJ Watt’s fiancée Kealia Ohai traded to the Red Stars

JJ Watt has been having an exciting week. Not only did the Houston Texans beat the Buffalo Bills this past Saturday, winning the AFC Wild Card Game and advancing in the playoffs, but his fiancée Kealia Ohai was traded from the Houston Dash to the Chicago Red Stars.

After the trade was announced today, Watt took to social media to celebrate her success.

Ohai has played in the NWSL with the Houston Dash for six years. In a video posted to Twitter, Ohai thanked the organization and the city of Houston for their support. Ohai explains that to be the best player she can be, she needed to grow in a new environment.

Ohai and Watt have been engaged since May 2019, but neither seems too stressed about their new long-distance relationship. Watt posted pictures of him decked out head-to-toe in Red Stars gear.

Welcome to the Red Stars, Kealia! And who knows, maybe her three-time NFL Defensive Player Year fiancée will like Chicago so much he might want to move, too. 

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