Last Wednesday’s Rangers game marked the 1,000th for 37-year-old goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, who was able to turn away 41 shots in a 3-2 win over the Hurricanes. Many saves came in acrobatic form because of a soft defense.
The decisive goal was scored by rookie Adam Fox, who grew up in Jericho, LI and exemplifies the Blueshirts’ youth movement. What has to be troubling was that the Hurricanes won 60 percent of the faceoffs. Even worse, Carolina outshot New York 43-25. Fluky wins don’t get a team to the playoffs.
The Yankees dropped frequently injured first baseman Greg Bird from their 40-man roster. That proved yet again that the sports gods aren’t always kind. Bird is one of the friendliest athletes you’ll ever have the pleasure of meeting. When he was healthy, he showed power and was a solid fielder. A team looking for a power hitter who won’t cost much such as the Rays would be wise to take a flier.
The Bronx Bombers also cut another frequent habitue of the injured list, outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury. What was surprising is that the Yankees, who are on the hook for the remaining $26 million he’s owed, are seeking to void the contract and avoid having to pay him by claiming Ellsbury underwent a medical procedure that wasn’t authorized by the team.
The Major League Baseball Players Association is challenging the team on the unusual action, and my guess is that the union will prevail. Had Ellsbury missed physical therapy rehab sessions the Yankees would have a strong case, but that’s not what happened.
The Mets will hold their first-ever fan festival at Citi Field on Saturday, Jan. 25, 2020. New manager Carlos Beltran will be on hand, as will several current and former players as well as on-air personalities from the Mets cable home, SNY. The Mets are promising a number of interactive activities. For more information log on to mets.com/fanfest.
Middleweight boxing champion Jermall Charlo will put his title on the line at Barclays Center Saturday night when he faces challenger Dennis Hogan. During a promotional press conference a few weeks ago, Hogan broke up the crowd of media by promising that he’ll paint the town green after upsetting Charlo.
Sports Illustrated’s new corporate owner, Seattle-based Maven, is reflecting the American economy by showing that there’s no middle class, at least when it comes to journalists. Maven kept a few of SI’s best-known writers, such as Chris Mannix and Tom Verducci, but fired nearly everyone else and replaced them with low-paid newbies.
Las Vegas oddsmakers should always make the New York Jets a heavy underdog whenever they are scheduled to play a winless team. They lost to yet another one last Sunday, falling 22-6 to the Cincinnati Bengals, who are now 1-11.
The Iron Bowl, the intrastate college football battle between Alabama and Auburn, has long been a Thanksgiving weekend tradition, and the 2019 game lived up to its billing as Auburn upset the Crimson Tide 48-45.
Earlier this past Saturday, Ohio State continued its domination of Michigan as the Buckeyes romped over the Wolverines 56-27 in what has long been considered the top rivalry in the Big Ten Conference.
While those rivalries attract national television audiences they pale in intensity to Harvard vs. Yale in what is simply known as “The Game.”
Yale beat Harvard 50-43 in double overtime the Saturday before last. This could have been the most memorable football game of the year not because it was obviously exciting from start to finish but also because climate activists stormed the Yale Bowl at halftime to protest how investments in fossil fuel companies are negatively impacting the environment. This surprise halftime show delayed the game for a half-hour as New Haven police needed extra time to escort the protesters off the field. The Yale Bowl doesn’t have lights so the Ivy League was lucky that the game ended just before dusk. The literal race against the clock enhanced the drama.
“The Game” thus wound up getting more media buzz than any Ivy League football matchup in the past 20 years, if not longer.