Bears

Word on the Street: Buehrle Gold Glove winner?

Word on the Street: Buehrle Gold Glove winner?

Monday, Nov. 8, 2010
CSNChicago.com

Buehrle wins second Gold Glove award?

The Gold Glove awards are scheduled to be announced Tuesday, but a well-placed source reported that White Sox ace Mark Buehrle will win his second consecutive award for his exceptional defense.

According to a Facebook post Monday, Jamie Buehrle expressed her happiness for her husband's honor.

"So proud of my husband," Jamie Buehrle posted Monday. "He is now a TWO time gold glove winner!!!" (ChicagoBreakingSports.com)

Bennett OK after car accident

Bears receiver Earl Bennett is OK after being involved in an early-morning accident Monday that totaled his car, multiple sources confirmed.

According to entries on Bennett's Twitter account, Bennett said he was OK but his car, which he refers to as "Ole Skool," wasn't as fortunate.

"Thanking God I'm alive!!!!," Bennett tweeted. "Drunk guy ran into back of my ole skool we smashed into wall ole skool done!!! But I'm alive that's all that matters," (ChicagoBreakingSports).

Comcast SportsNet earns two Emmy Awards
Comcast SportsNet was the recipient of two Emmy Awards from the ChicagoMidwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. The 52nd annual ceremony was held in Chicago on Saturday, November 6, (CSNChicago.com).
Nuggets' Anthony: Chicago a 'top 3' NBA City
Carmelo Anthony had a lot to say after the Nuggets' shootaround at Moody Bible Institute. Amongst his comments, Anthony praised Chicago and the Bulls, saying Chicago is in the top 3 of NBA cities, (ChicagoBreakingSports).

White Sox lose Triple-A Charlotte manager

The White Sox recently lost Triple-A Charlotte manager Chris Chambliss, who was hired by Seattle to be the Mariners' hitting coach.

But the Sox might receive some minor consolation, as former major league catcher Tim Laker is expected to join their minor league staff. Laker, 40, managed the past two seasons for the Mariners' Double-A West Tenn affiliate. A Seattle source confirmed that Laker is no longer with the organization.

Laker was a catcher for parts of 11 seasons with seven major league teams, (ChicagoBreakingSports).
Should NHL Hall of Fame voting be made public?

The Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto welcomes its newest class today, with former Minnesota North Stars great Dino Ciccarelli; women's stars Cammi Granato and Angela James; and builders Jimmy Devellano of the Detroit Red Wings and the late Daryl Seaman, who founded what's now the Calgary Flames.

As with any year, there are annoying controversies that linger during the celebration. This year's class debates:

That the voting for the Hockey Hall of Fame should be made public.

The question is: Would making those totals, andor those voters' decisions, public do anything to improve the process?

Or is this simply another case of fans and media craving another debate topic, another argument to wage over the airwaves?

Vote totals in the NHL aren't exactly state secrets. The League began real-time All-Star Game voting a few seasons ago, where fans could reload a page and see the numbers climb. The NHL Awards vote totals are released the night of the show; if players are red-faced about it, they've not made a stink over them. (Despite the fact that Alex Ovechkin(notes) had more first-place votes for defensive player of the year than Patrick Marleau in 2009-10.)

The Hall of Fame obviously isn't an NHL property, and thus keeps its vote totals close to the suit jacket. The Baseball Hall of Fame isn't an MLB property either, but releases vote totals for players so fans and media can see who came closest to meeting the necessary threshold of support for induction, (Puck Daddy, Yahoo! Sports).

Blackhawks score two Emmys

The Blackhawks are doing some winning -- off the ice. They took home Emmy Awards from the ChicagoMidwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences on Saturday night for their ''One Goal'' advertisements with coach Joel Quenneville and defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson, and for the ''Blackhawks TV'' television program, (Chicago Sun-Times).

Derrek Lee has surgery

Former Cubs first baseman Derrek Lee recently underwent surgery on his right thumb to repair a torn ligament that he suffered during the Cubs regular season opener. Lee, who is a free agent heading into the 2011 season, is expected to recover in time for spring training. Assuming he is healthy, Lee will join a talented list of free agent first basemen that includes Paul Konerko, Adam Dunn, Lance Berkman and others. (Yahoo! Sports)
Cubs interested in Adrian Gonzalez?

CSNPhilly recently posted a report that the San Diego Padres are open to trading All-Star first baseman Adrian Gonzalez before the start of the 2011 season. Gonzalez, who will turn 29 in May, is a two time gold glove winner who hit .298 with a .393 on base percentage and 31 home runs in 2010. The Padres would prefer to keep their star first basemen, but Gonzalez' agent recently informed the team that his client would be seeking a contract on par with other star first baseman such as Ryan Howard (five years, 125 million) and Mark Teixeira (eight years, 180 million). A contract of that size is likely far out of the price range of a small-market club such as the Padres. Additionally, ESPNChicago.com recently suggested that the Cubs may be interested in acquiring Gonzalez. (CSNPhilly.com)

(Too) Bold Predictions: A big day for the Bears' running backs

(Too) Bold Predictions: A big day for the Bears' running backs

You've stumbled into (Too) Bold Predictions, a weekly column that is exactly what it sounds like! Here, we'll take nuanced, well-researched information and use to make wildly improbable predictions. Analysis! 

 

J.J. Stankevitz 

1. Jordan Howard will have his first 100-yard game of the year.
Hear me out: This happens if Bill Belichick’s strategy is to drop seven or even eight defenders into zone coverage, forcing Mitch Trubisky to make good decisions and fit passes into tight windows against a secondary that’s the strength of the Patriots’ defense. Or...Matt Nagy recognizes what’s in front of him and pounds the ball to Howard 15-20 times with plenty of success. Belichick, too, was extremely complimentary of Tarik Cohen on a conference call with Chicago media this week, and it wouldn’t be surprising if Cohen is the guy the future Hall of Fame coach tries to take away. Either way, it’s also worth noting here the Patriots allowed Kerryon Johnson to become the first Detroit Lions running back to have a 100-yard game since 2013 (!) in Week 2. And Howard still has shown flashes this year, like the 34 yards he gained on consecutive carries in overtime against Miami. 

 

2. Danny Trevathan or Roquan Smith will make a big play when it counts.
Given how good the rookie running back combo of Sony Michel (67 carries, 236 yards) and James White (23 receptions, 198 yards) has been recently, a lot of the Bears’ defensive success will hinge on the inside linebacking play of Trevathan and Smith. Trevathan has had an up-and-down year, playing outstanding ball in Weeks 2 and 4 but having some issues against the likes of David Johnson and Kenyan Drake/Frank Gore. Smith’s athleticism stands out but he’s still growing into Vic Fangio’s defense. Sunday will be a major test for both of them, and if the Bears are to win, it may come down to one of these two guys making a big-time play: A forced fumble, interception, run stuff on third down, etc. For the sake of a bold prediction, I’ll go with Smith making a play at the end of Sunday’s game that stands as the first big moment of the rookie’s pro career. 

 

Cam Ellis

1. Tarik Cohen's performance will garner the attention of national media 
Last Sunday night, Kansas City's Tyreek Hill had seven catches for 142 yards and three touchdowns. He averaged almost 21 yards per catch, thanks in part to a 75-yard touchdown score late in the 4th. The Patriots' defense clearly had no answer for Hill's speed. Now Cohen isn't a carbon copy of Hill, but he plays a similar role in the Bears' offense that Hill plays for the Chiefs. New England's linebackers lack and real speed -- especially on the outside -- which obviously bodes well for Cohen. Belichick is notoriously for creating game plans that take away the other team's best offensive players, but with the personell he has on defense, it's going to be tough to matchup with Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, Trey Burton, AND Cohen. The guess here is that Robinson and Gabriel have quiet games, but Cohen runs circles around the Pats. 

 

2. The Bears and Pats are tied heading into the 4th quarter
For a team with aspirations of an NFC North title (and more) this shouldn't be a bold prediction, and yet, it kinda feels like it? After a slow start to the season, the Patriots' offense have scored at least 38 points in each of the last three games. This Bears defense is the best they'll have played yet, so I don't expect them to get anywhere close to 38 today, especially with how the defense played last week in Miami. I think New England comes out of Chicago with a win, but the Bears will play them closer than people are predicting. A Cody Parkey-Stephen Gostkowski battle royale could be in play. 

Bulls defense costs them late but showing 'competitive spirit' a step in right direction

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USA TODAY

Bulls defense costs them late but showing 'competitive spirit' a step in right direction

The Bulls defense is nowhere near where it needs to be, and it cost them dearly on Saturday night. But in a season that’s still about seeing progression both individually and collectively, the Bulls took a step in the right direction with their effort and what Fred Hoiberg called “competitive spirit.”

That won’t change the standings when they wake up Sunday morning, now facing an 0-2 hole in the early season. And while better effort and tougher defense helped them stage a second-half comeback they weren’t able to manage on Thursday, it was a defensive miscue that cost them the game.

Ish Smith split a double screen at the top of the key and sliced his way past Jabari Parker for a wide open go-ahead layup with 5.4 seconds left. Zach LaVine, who 20 seconds earlier had tied the game with the last of his 33 points, was unable to get a shot off after a timeout. Better than Thursday for 47 minutes and 50 seconds. But still costing them when it mattered most.

“We can’t give up a layup for the last play,” said LaVine, who was guarding Smith. “We just got to get our defense right. That’s why it’s really upsetting because we played so well, we came back but we can’t give up a layup. We at least have to make him take a tough one. That was as easy a layup as you can get. It’s really upsetting.”

Fred Hoiberg defended his decision to leave Parker in the game instead of inserting rookie Wendell Carter Jr. He opted to ride the group that helped the Bulls erase a fourth-quarter deficit when it appeared the Bulls were spiraling toward another double-digit loss.

But the Pistons were ready to find the weak link in the Bulls defense and expose it, like they did much of the fourth quarter while attacking Parker with Blake Griffin. As the screen was set Parker jumped outside to cut off Smith, who then made a cut inward and made a dash to the rim. Parker was a couple steps late, allowing the 5-foot-9 Smith to score with ease to give the Pistons their lead and the eventual game-winner.

Bobby Portis, whose shot wasn’t falling but played admirable defense against a talent like Griffin, was on the other side of the double screen and didn’t have a great view of the play. But he said allowing a layup with the game on the line is inexcusable.

“It’s a tough play but at the same time you don’t want to give up a layup at the end of the game,” he said. “You want to make him take a tough shot. That’s something we’ve got to work on, is late game execution on defense.”

But again, it’s about baby steps. The Bulls will want that final possession back, and Hoiberg might also want it back after leaving Parker in the game over Carter. But from where the Bulls were on Thursday, this was better. Granted, allowing 118 points and 18 3-pointers to the Pistons isn’t a recipe for success, it’s improvement nonetheless. Detroit got a career-high five triples from Griffin, four from Reggie Jackson (a career 32 percent 3-point shooter) and a pair from Stnaley Johnson (a career 29 percent 3-point shooter). The Bulls will be able to live with some of those makes.

On Thursday the Bulls trailed by just six early in the third quarter before the Sixers ripped off a 19-3 run to put the game out of reach. On Saturday the Pistons got out to a six-point lead on two different occasions, and then a seven-point lead with just 2:01 to play. All three times the Bulls came roaring back, using timely spots and clutch baskets from LaVine, Park and even Cameron Payne, who tied a career-high with 17 points.

Ultimately it wasn’t enough, but it’s a positive sign that they were able to battle back and show some fight defensively. They’ll certainly need that when they travel to Dallas to take on a Mavericks team that scored 140 points on the Jimmy Butler-less Timberwolves on Saturday. They should get Dunn back, which will help,  and now have a close contest under their belt on which to build. It didn’t result in a win, and the late-game cross-up was the cause, but the Bulls finished Saturday in a much better place than they were in on Thursday.

“Yeah but obviously we want to get the win. I feel like we fought hard,” Portis said. “Even when adversity hit everybody stuck together. We did our thing tonight. You want to win the game but I felt like we did our job tonight. We just gave up a bad play at the end of the game.”