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Spanish FA proposes Barca, Real, others for UCL

first_imgRelatedPosts Aguero could be out of action until November, Guardiola says UCL: Benfica kicked out by player who left club one week earlier + other results MultiChoice unveils sport channels, content line-up The Spanish FA have proposed the clubs they wish to take part in European football next term should the Spanish top flight fail to be completed, but it is set to cause huge controversy.Barcelona, Real Madrid, Sevilla and Real Sociedad are the sides currently in the top four of LaLiga and they have been proposed by Spanish football’s governing body to compete in the Champions League if the division fails to restart, according to Marca.Although there will be little complaint about the inclusion of the top two, the inclusion of Sevilla and Real Sociedad is sure to spark fury from Getafe and Atletico Madrid below them in the table.Just two points separate the four sides, but it is Getafe who will have the most to complain about should they lose out to Sociedad with no further playing action this term.Jose Bordalas’s side would miss out on a first ever appearance in the Champions League on goals scored, due to having the same amount of points and goal difference than Sociedad.Worse still, LaLiga’s first tie-breaker rule is head-to-head which Getafe lead having won 2-1 at Real Sociedad earlier in the season.But the rule does not come into effect until both matches have taken place, meaning Getafe would have to settle for a Europa League spot.They would be joined in the competition by Atletico Madrid, who knocked European champions Liverpool out of the Champions League in their last match before the coronavirus pandemic shut the game down across Europe.Meanwhile, Athletic Bilbao would also seal a Europa League spot courtesy of reaching the Copa del Rey final, with opponents Real Sociedad having already gained a Champions League place.However should the game eventually be played and they lose, the place would revert to seventh place in LaLiga table which is currently held by Valencia.No decision has yet been taken on how the Spanish season will end.Despite the European places having been proposed, there is still no decision on how the title race between Barca and Real Madrid as well as the relegation battle will be resolved if the the top flight is not completed.Tags: Spanish FAUEFA Champions Leaguelast_img read more

Lampard insists Chelsea fully deserved their victory over Tottenham

first_imgFrank Lampard insisted Chelsea fully deserved their FA Cup semi-final win against Tottenham despite the controversial nature of their second goal.Spurs were furious after Juan Mata’s shot was adjudged to have crossed the line, but midfielder Lampard scored one of three late goals that sealed a superb victory for the Blues.“It was an amazing game. I thought we played brilliantly. We deserved to win that game with the amount we created,” Lampard told ITV.AdChoices广告“We got lucky [with Mata’s goal] but we can’t call that -the referee did. But we scored a lot of goals and created a lot of chances. Over the course of the game we deserved to win.”Looking ahead to Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Barcelona, Lampard added: “We’ve got to believe in ourselves.“We’re ready to go for it. We’ve been in pretty good form lately but we need to carry it on.”Chelsea skipper John Terry said of Mata’s goal: “I don’t think it did [cross the line]. I thought it hit me and stayed out. Throughout the season things go for you and against you.”Click here for the Chelsea v Tottenham quizSee also: Chelsea v Tottenham: Player ratingsControversial Mata goal helps Blues thrash Tottenham Di Matteo confrms Luiz is a doubt for Barcelona clashFollow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Dreams of Planetary Oceans Dry Up

first_imgAstrobiologists like oceans.  The vision of life evolving on Earth in a primordial soup drives the quest to find liquid on other worlds.  It doesn’t have to be liquid water: just liquid that stimulates the imagination with visions of exotic life.  Two solar system bodies once considered prime candidates for ocean front property, though, have recently dried up substantially, reducing their value as astrobiological real estate.Titan:  A JPL press release painted a rosy picture for realtors looking at Titan’s lakefront property, after Nature1 wrote up the scientific results of a July flyby by Cassini (see also the comments by Christophe Sotin2).  Though Sotin boasted “Titan’s lost seas found,” those who know the history of the region must sigh over the long-lost global ocean that was once thought to exist on this huge Saturnian moon (see Science 12/16/1983).3  In 1983, Titan expert Jonathan Lunine and team “proposed that Saturn’s satellite Titan is covered by an ocean one to several kilometers deep consisting mainly of ethane.”  Cassini found, on the contrary, that the bulk of Titan is crisscrossed by sand dunes (05/04/2006).  Scientists are pretty sure now that the lakes, only found between the 70th and 83rd parallel north, have some liquid in them.  As to what happened to the vast oceans of liquid ethane and methane thought to have accumulated over 4.5 billion years, they can only speculate that it went underground or glommed onto solid particles (10/18/2006).  Cassini is incapable of directly confirming that possibility.Mars:  Few probably heard the whimper about Mars water expressed in Science last week.4  In the heyday of early science results from the Mars Exploration Rovers, scientists trumpeted the possibility of extensive and persistent oceans of water in the Martian past (12/20/2004, 08/06/2004, 04/12/2004, 01/03/2004).  These days?  Here’s what was overheard about “a nastier early Mars” at last month’s meetings of the American Geophysical Union (AGU):When the Opportunity rover sent back signs of water early in martian history, the usual descriptor was “shallow salty seas.”  Sounded nice and cozy for any early martian life.  But at a press conference at the meeting, rover science team leader Steven Squyres of Cornell University made a point of spelling out the team’s best current understanding of early Mars, which is much less encouraging.  “At the surface, this was primarily an arid environment,” he said.  Only occasionally, here and there, would puddles of salty, acidic groundwater form between dunes of salt sand.  As the team’s latest paper puts it, “dominantly arid, acidic, and oxidizing” environmental conditions would have posed “significant challenges to the origin of life.”  (See 10/30/2006).  Best the Martian realtors can advertise now are small, localized waterparks (12/06/2006).Jupiter’s moon Europa remains as a prime candidate for a vast under-ice ocean that might harbor exotic life.  The other large Galilean satellites might have deep water, but it’s probably too deep to encourage astrobiologists.  The geysers of Enceladus might not require liquid water (see 12/15/2006, last par.).  As waterfront real estate shrinks, the stakes for astrobiology marketing skyrocket.1Stofan et al., “The lakes of Titan,” Nature 445, 61-64 (4 January 2007) | doi:10.1038/nature05438.2Christophe Sotin, “Planetary science: Titan’s lost seas found,” Nature 445, 29-30 (4 January 2007) | doi:10.1038/445029a.3Lunine et al., “Ethane Ocean on Titan,” Science 16 December 1983: Vol. 222. no. 4629, pp. 1229 – 1230, DOI: 10.1126/science.222.4629.1229.4Richard A. Kerr, “FALL MEETING OF THE AMERICAN GEOPHYSICAL UNION: Snapshots From the Meeting,” Science, 5 January 2007: Vol. 315. no. 5808, p. 37, DOI: 10.1126/science.315.5808.37a.Liquid water is a rare and beautiful substance.  If you want to float your life boat, better do it here.(Visited 7 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Dairy safety net strengthened but more work needs done

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest After Congress made significant improvements in February to the dairy safety net, the National Milk Producers Federation is now urging U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue to move swiftly to re-open 2018 enrollment for the Margin Protection Program (MPP) so farmers can take advantage of the program in the face of challenging on-farm economic conditions.Congress passed a major supplemental assistance bill on Feb. 9 that contained $1.2 billion in budget authority to both strengthen the MPP and remove the annual budget cap on the Livestock Gross Margin (LGM) program for dairy. Congress has worked for nearly a year to find the budgetary resources to implement necessary improvements to the MPP, a program which has failed to offer meaningful safety net support to farmers in its first three years of operation. The budget package approved in February will allow farmers to insure more of their milk production history at a lower cost. It also eliminated the $20 million annual cap on all livestock insurance programs, including the LGM. This will allow USDA to offer additional risk management tools for dairy producers.The next step, according to NMPF, is for USDA act quickly to educate producers about the changes to the MPP and re-open the sign-up period to obtain coverage for the full calendar year 2018. That window had closed in mid-December, but the breadth of improvements to the MPP should prompt farmers to reconsider how the program may benefit them in the coming months.“Congress was clear that dairy farmers can re-enroll in the MPP if they dropped out after last year,” said Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of NMPF. “They can also change their coverage levels for 2018 if they are only utilizing the catastrophic coverage provided at the basic administrative fee level of $100. Given the difficult economic situation facing dairy farmers in 2018, the assistance provided by these changes is badly needed.”NMPF has also emphasized that MPP coverage under the new provisions set by Congress must be retroactive to the beginning of January. This will ensure the changes provide farmers protection during a period when margins will likely be below the $8 coverage threshold. It is imperative that “coverage be available during the worst of the low-margin conditions in 2018, which market forecasts indicate will occur in the first half of the year,” Mulhern said.In addition to making the LGM program more attractive by removing the $20 million program cap, the disaster package made the following changes to the MPP:• Raised the catastrophic coverage level from $4 to $5 for the first tier of milk production history for all dairy farmers;• Adjusted the first tier of covered production to include every dairy farmer’s first 5 million pounds of annual milk production history, instead of 4 million pounds;• Reduced the premium rates for every producer’s first 5 million pounds of production to better enable dairy farmers to afford the higher levels of coverage;• Modified the margin calculation to a monthly (from bi-monthly) basis; and• Waived the annual $100 administrative fees for underserved farmers.“These changes enact three out of the four goals developed last year by NMPF: reducing MPP premiums, shifting to a monthly margin calculation, and expanding access to other risk management tools,” Mulhern said.  “We’re now working with Congress on our major remaining goal: addressing shortcomings in the current margin calculation that understate actual feed costs. There are different ways to accomplish this needed fix, and we’re working with lawmakers to address it in the 2018 farm bill.”Mulhern said the dairy safety net improvements enjoyed strong support from numerous members of both the House and Senate.“In particular we want to thank Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) for spearheading these reforms to the MPP, as well as Sens. Thad Cochran (R-MS) and Pat Roberts (R-KS) for helping ensure their passage. We also very much appreciate the House-led efforts of Reps. Mike Conaway (R-TX) and Collin Peterson (D-MN) for crafting important language to remove the existing cap on livestock insurance products,” Mulhern said.last_img read more

Can smart cities protect their IoT Achilles heel from hackers?

first_imgLast year’s headline-grabbing security breaches of Internet of Things (IoT) technology was the opening salvo in a new cyberwar where smart cities are firmly in the crosshairs.Smart city security vulnerabilities were a recent topic of discussion with Paul Williams, SADC Country Manager with cyber security software firm Fortinet.Williams says that 2016’s high profile IoT cyber-attacks exposed how vulnerable this new technology is to hackers.“As was seen recently in a series of IoT-based denial of service attacks, IoT devices can be compromised and hijacked into a Shadownet and controlled by a command and control center run by hackers,” he says. “Alternatively, these devices and services may be attacked in order to deny services to legitimate users.”And considering that global smart city strategies hinge on connecting massive numbers of IoT devices and sensors, this boosts the attack surfaces targeted by smart city hackers.“The increase in the size of a smart city’s IoT device footprint corresponds to an increase in the size of its attack surface,” he warns.In light of how quickly IoT technology is being integrated into vital systems of smart cities, considerable damage can be done by malicious hackers.Some examples of possible smart city attacks could include: disrupting traffic by hijacking traffic lights or misdirecting vehicles; causing sewage system floods or disrupted access to drinking water; or remotely operating alarm systems and temperature control systems.But rather than hitting the panic button, Williams recommends smart cities begin a systematic approach to tackling their IoT security threats.“While it’s not possible to secure every possible security breach in a totally connected environment… it’s possible to take some key initial steps to strengthen the smart city’s security posture and architecture,” he says.Using strong encryptionAmong these initial steps would be the usual advice of using strong encryption, designing tamper-resistant systems and implementing strong system access control.Beyond these steps he says that complex smart city networks need to implement segmentation to boost security. He suggests, for example, that smart transportation networks be logically segmented from other networks like user services or energy networks.“This aids in isolating an attacks, and allows for the advanced detection of data and threats as attacks and malware move from one network zone to the other,” says Williams. “This also divides the smart city network into security zones, which aids in compliance, monitoring internal traffic and devices, and preventing unauthorized access to restricted data and resources.”He also recommends that smart cities develop specific mitigation strategies to counter distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks. These strategies could include overprovisioning the city’s bandwidth to withstand the overwhelming nature of DDoS attacks.“This may be comprised of either an over provisioned appliance solution, or a hybrid solution consisting of appliances combined with a cloud based scrubbing center,” he says. Tags:#cybersecurity#Fortinet#IoT#Smart Cities#smart city Donal Power How Connected Communities Can Bolster Your Busi… For Self-Driving Systems, Infrastructure and In…center_img Related Posts How IoT Will Play an Important Role in Traffic … Surveillance at the Heart of Smart Citieslast_img read more

Your Investment In Reading Blog Posts

first_img“That blog post was too long.”“That newsletter was way too long.”“I’d read your stuff if you could just give me the summary.”Some blog posts are long. Some blog posts are short. But the length of the post is no representation of its value or the investment you should make in reading it. Your investment in reading a blog post (or newsletter) isn’t just the time is takes you to read it. Your investment in reading is far more significant.Your investment in really digesting something you read is the time it takes to read it + the time is takes to answer the questions that the author asks and answers + the time it takes to explore the answers to the questions that you come up with as you read + the time it takes to figure out how to apply any part of the idea that you find useful.You aren’t reading just to check the box “I read Seth’s blog,” or “I read Chris’s blog,” or “I read Dave’s blog.” Deriving value from reading is a more significant commitment of time and an even greater commitment of energy.If it isn’t the right time for you to make the full investment in exploring an idea, then don’t worry about it. The ideas that live on the web will still be here when you need them. If you don’t have time to read something, bookmark it and save it for later. I save important posts to Evernote and tag them so I can retrieve and study them later.If you’re going to take the time to read, invest the rest of the time you need to apply what you have read and learned. If something isn’t useful for you right now, discard it and invest your time on ideas that will benefit you.QuestionsWhy do you read blog posts and newsletters?What do you hope to get out of the time and energy you invest?What was the last idea that you read and took action on after having read it?What are you going to do with the next great idea you read instead of glossing over it and moving on?last_img read more

Morgan, Navas win CONCACAF honors

first_imgUnited States Morgan, Navas win CONCACAF Player of the Year honors Thomas Floyd @thomasfloyd10 Last updated 1 year ago 12:04 12/18/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Alex Morgan USWNT Stan Szeto United States Costa Rica Friendlies Friendlies Women The United States and Costa Rica stars have been named the region’s top players of 2017 Alex Morgan and Keylor Navas have earned CONCACAF’s Player of the Year honors for 2017, the confederation announced Sunday.Morgan earned the Female Player of the Year prize for the third time since CONCACAF’s awards kicked off in 2013, while Navas won his second Male Player of the Year honor.The awards are decided in an equally weighted vote among media, fans, and national team coaches and captains. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Congratulations! United States international @alexmorgan13 was named winner of the 2017 CONCACAF Female Player of the Year. #CONCACAFAwards | @ussoccer_wnt— CONCACAF (@CONCACAF) December 18, 2017 El guardameta de Costa Rica fue anunciado como el ganador el domingo, un día después de que el Real Madrid se convirtiera en el primer equipo lograr el Bi Campeonato en el Mundial de Clubes de la FIFA. @NavasKeylor | #CONCACAFAwards— CONCACAF (@CONCACAF) December 18, 2017Having won the award in 2013 and 2016, Morgan again earned the honor after lifting the UEFA Champions League trophy while on loan to Lyon and scoring nine goals in 13 NWSL games with the Orlando Pride. The 28-year-old also netted a team-leading seven goals in 14 games for the United States.Navas, meanwhile, was between the posts for a Real Madrid side that won the Champions League, La Liga, UEFA Super Cup and Supercopa de Espana. The 31-year-old, who also won CONCACAF’s top honor in 2014, conceded just six goals in seven World Cup qualifiers as Costa Rica secured a place at Russia 2018.last_img read more

Newfoundland harassment investigation misses scope of problem critics

first_imgST. JOHN’S, N.L. – Tensions were high in Newfoundland and Labrador’s legislature today as members moved to address reports on harassment by two ousted members of the Liberal caucus, with some arguing the investigation failed to address the scope of the problem.The province’s commissioner for legislative standards completed five reports on allegations of harassment against former Liberal cabinet ministers, Eddie Joyce and Dale Kirby, which surfaced in April.Commissioner Bruce Chaulk recommended the legislature reprimand the two men, but for the most part he found their behaviour did not violate the member’s code of conduct, and in some cases, was to be expected when working in politics.The incidents described include Kirby allegedly telling member of the legislature Pam Parsons: “You’re beautiful and I love you,” before he suggests she should stop being so vocal. As well, both Joyce and Kirby were accused of using profane language towards other members.One report referenced an interview with Cathy Bennett, who recently retired from politics, citing a culture of intimidation in cabinet.Bennett, a former finance minister, criticized the investigation for focusing on the actions of individuals rather than a system that allows harassment to fester.Tracey Perry, a member of the legislature who complained about Joyce, said something had to be done to prevent more women like Bennett from leaving elected office.“We’ve lost many, many, many good people,” Perry said. “Just a few months ago, we lost one of our brightest and it’s very unfortunate that that happened because of the environment and culture of politics … We tolerate behaviour that we would not tolerate in our own homes.”Liberla Premier Dwight Ball made a similar statement on Tuesday, highlighting the need for women to feel welcome in politics and declaring a “zero-tolerance policy” for bullying and harassment.The scandal has gripped the government since last spring, with critics taking aim at Ball for his lack of awareness around the ongoing conflicts within his cabinet.Now that the reports have been tabled, it’s now up to the other members of the legislature to decide what the recommended reprimand should look like.The process itself has come under scrutiny, with Ball acknowledging that it has been “flawed.”Cabinet minister Sherry Gambin-Walsh, one of the complainants against Joyce, has said she was not satisfied with the findings or the process, and would have preferred a fully independent investigation.Chaulk does not typically investigate interpersonal workplace complaints but said a lawyer from firm Rubin-Thomlinson with expertise in workplace investigations carried out interviews with him.Amanda Bittner, a Memorial University professor who studies gender and politics, said she found the reports “problematic and disturbing.”Bittner said some of Chaulk’s analysis, like referring to MHA’s comments as “not sexual in nature,” show a limited understanding of gender dynamics in the workplace.“Something doesn’t have to be sexual assault in order to be sexual harassment, and gender-based harassment without any sexual overtures is still a problem, and it clearly took place, based on the reports that were released. He’s missing the point.”A harassment-free workplace policy for government officials came into effect in June and work is ongoing to develop a legislature-specific policy.But Bittner said the way the issue has been handled so far suggests the government has a long way to go in dealing with the nuances of harassment complaints.“The stakes in parliamentary politics tend to make folks cover up bad behaviour rather than deal with it head on,” Bittner said.“All the harassment legislation and protocol in the world won’t fix the problem unless there is political will to actually do something about it.”Outside the legislature on Wednesday, Justice Minister Andrew Parsons said that debates on the reports will likely be pushed back until next week.last_img read more

Bomb threats made in Canada and across US appear to be hoax

first_imgAuthorities say bomb threats sent to dozens of businesses, schools, universities and other locations across Canada and the U.S. appear to be a hoax.Over 10 threats have been made across Toronto, according to police. Details of the threats have not been made available. King subway station in Toronto was also evacuated due to a bomb threat, but it was not immediately clear if it was similar to the other threats. It has since cleared. Police across the GTA have also received several reports of bomb threats. York regional police say they have responded to several unfounded email bomb threats demanding bitcoin sent to local businesses and individuals. Those who receive a threat are asked to contact police and not respond to the demand. Several local businesses across Peel have received unfounded bomb threats, according to police. The emails demanded bitcoin payment in exchange for locations of the bombs. Police in Halton say they have also responded to several email bomb threats demanding bitcoin similar to the ones across Canada Thursday. They have classified the threats as unfounded as well. Provincial police also released a statement saying they are investigating several bomb threats across Ontario that were sent via email to businesses and institutions and demanded a payment in bitcoins. Ottawa police say they responded to more than 10 bomb threats sent to local businesses and individuals in the Ottawa area where the sender also demanded a bitcoin payment. All the threats have been deemed unfounded at this point. Police are encouraging anyone who receives an email, not to respond and to call police. Winnipeg police say reports of bomb threats to businesses have been spread across the city and add while they are taking the threats seriously, none of them have been substantiated. Calgary police have determined the multiple bomb threats sent out are a hoax and believe there is no threat to public safety. They responded to 15 incidents, but believe there are many more who received threats. Five different companies in Montreal received threatening emails, but police say nothing suspicious was found at any of the locations. Agent Jean-Pierre Brabant, a police spokesman, said the emails were the same as those received elsewhere in North America. They warned in imperfect English that unless $20,000 in Bitcoin was paid, a bomb would go off.“Each call was taken very seriously,” Brabant said. “We sent police officers to the site, they searched the premises. We found nothing suspicious. There were no explosives.”It was not necessary to call in the bomb squad, he added.He said there was nothing connecting the companies, which were spread across the city.“It appears to be a hoax, but we are not taking any chances,” Brabant said.Manitoba and Alberta RCMP are working to determine the origin and validity of bomb threats made to multiple businesses in communities across the two provinces. Several received email bomb threats also demanding bitcoin payments. All police services say they are aware of similar events happening across the continent.Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale says the government is aware of the multiple bomb threats and encourages anyone to report anything suspicious to local law enforcement. Statement from the federal Public Safety Minister’s office on the bomb threats made in multiple cities across Canada #cdnpoli— Cormac Mac Sweeney (@cmaconthehill) December 13, 2018Law enforcement agencies across the U.S. also dismissed the threats, which they said were meant to cause disruption and compel recipients into sending money and are not considered credible.Some of the emails had the subject line: “Think Twice.” The sender claimed to have had an associate plant a small bomb in the recipient’s building and that the only way to stop him from setting it off was by making an online payment of $20,000 in Bitcoin.“We are currently monitoring multiple bomb threats that have been sent electronically to various locations throughout the city,” the New York City Police Department’s counterterrorism unit tweeted. “These threats are also being reported to other locations nationwide & are NOT considered credible at this time.”Other law enforcement agencies also dismissed the threats, which were written in a choppy style reminiscent of the Nigerian prince email scam.The Palm Beach County, Florida, sheriff’s office and the Boise, Idaho, police said they had no reason to believe that threats made to locations in those areas were credible.The FBI didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.Across the country, some schools closed early and others were evacuated or placed on lockdown because of the hoax. Authorities said a threat emailed to a school in Troy, Missouri, about 55 miles (88 kilometres) northeast of St. Louis, was sent from Russia.The bomb threats also prompted evacuations at city hall in Aurora, Illinois, the offices of the News & Observer in Raleigh, North Carolina, a suburban Atlanta courthouse and businesses in Detroit.“Organizations nationwide, both public and private, have reported receiving emailed bomb threats today,” Michigan State Police spokeswoman Shannon Banner said. “They are not targeted toward any one specific sector.”Penn State University notified students via a text alert about threats to a half-dozen buildings and an airport on its main campus in State College, Pennsylvania. In an update, the school said the threat appeared to be part of a “national hoax.”last_img read more


first_img LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With: Advertisement Hugh Jackman is helping promote Ryan Reynolds new movie “Once Upon a Deadpool”, but he is not being overly friendly.The Australian actor posted an attack ad on Monday bashing Reynolds and his upcoming movie. Jackman touts Reynolds’ portrayal as Deadpool in “X: Men Origins” the “best portrayal of Wade Wilson ever.”Jackman further suggested he is to thank and blame for Reynold’s budding movie career. He notes how Reynolds only became People‘s Sexiest Man after meeting Jackman.Who are you going to trust? Me or @VancityReynolds? (Courtesy of @MTVNews @joshuahorowitz) #OnceUponADeadpool @letsfcancer— Hugh Jackman (@RealHughJackman) November 26, 2018 Facebook Advertisement “The truth, you can soon see Ryan in ‘Once Upon a Deadpool’ and support the Fudge Cancer charity at the same time,” Jackman said in the attack ad. “Please do it or he might make another ‘Van Wilder’ movie or, worse yet, ‘Green Lantern’.”Jackman and Reynolds’ war of words has only ramped up in recent weeks and even John Krasinski has found himself wrapped up in it.“Once Upon a Deadpool” hits theatres Dec. 21By SHAKIEL MAHJOURI | ET CANADA Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more

Stephen Curry Isnt Better Than LeBron On Offense — But Hes As

Apparently it’s the season of athletes making statistically unsupported comparisons to their peers. Back in May, Patrick Peterson claimed superiority over Richard Sherman in the NFL (something that, according to the numbers — is dubious), and now Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry told Dan Patrick Tuesday that he thinks he’s a better offensive player than LeBron James:A better offensive player, me or LeBron? That’s the first time I’ve ever been asked that question … Me. He obviously demands a lot of attention on the floor, but I like to say I can distribute, get my teammates involved and be a playmaker as well.With all due respect to Curry, a true offensive force in his own right, this is another case where the majority of statistical evidence doesn’t do the challenger any favors.According to the advanced box-score metrics, James spent the 2013-14 season outclassing Curry in usage rate, scoring efficiency, offensive rebounding, avoiding turnovers and drawing fouls. The only offensive areas in which Curry beat James were jump-shooting — Curry made 42 percent of his 3-point shots and 49 percent of his midrange jumpers; James knocked down those shots at rates of 38 and 39 percent, respectively — and passing (whether measured by assist percentage or SportVU’s optically tracked passing metrics).But James is no slouch in terms of distributing the ball, either; he ranked 19th among qualified NBA players in assist percentage a year ago. Distance shooting is really the only offensive category in which Curry claims a substantial edge over James — and it’s an advantage mitigated by the fact that James’s shot distribution skews so heavily toward easier shots at the rim. So Curry is a better long-range shooter than James, but James doesn’t take that many long-range shots.Zooming out, James’s personal offensive rating was higher than Curry’s even though James used a higher proportion of his team’s possessions (so subscribers to skill curve theory would have a hard time siding with Curry in this debate).Case closed? Not yet. There have been instances when such box-score-based metrics fail to tell the whole story, and players with gaudy combinations of usage and efficiency don’t always have the impact we’d predict from their individual stats. These are the kinds of incongruities that ESPN’s Real Plus Minus (RPM) is supposed to detect. RPM estimates a player’s effect on his team’s efficiency after accounting for the quality of his teammates, opponents and a host of other variables.By RPM, James was easily the offensive player who had the most impact in the NBA last season. Curry was second, slightly outpacing reigning MVP Kevin Durant.The comparison gets a little more interesting, though, when you look at these adjusted Four Factors ratings, which apply the same technique — estimating a player’s on-court impact via regression — to the four essential barometers of a team’s offensive performance: effective field goal percentage (which adjusts ordinary shooting percentage for the fact that 3-pointers are worth 1.5 times as much as 2s), turnover percentage, offensive rebounding rate and free-throw rate.In two of the four factors, James and Curry exert similar degrees of influence: Both boost team shooting percentages and reduce team turnover rates at levels greater than 95 percent of all NBA players. And despite his inferior individual offensive rebounding numbers, Curry is also associated with a much better rate of team effectiveness on the offensive glass than James is. This is probably due in part to the increased likelihood that 3-pointers result in “long rebounds” which can be rebounded more readily by the offense (of course, Miami’s incredibly low offensive rebounding percentage — at least some of which was part of a conscious strategy — bears mentioning).Through this lens, the biggest disparity between the two players is in free-throw rate: James was in the 99th percentile in that category, while Curry ranked in the 54th percentile. But free-throw rate is the least important of the Four Factors. Crafting an overall average based on the suggested weights for each category, Curry would actually place slightly ahead of James on offense (even if the overall adjusted plus/minus ratings generated by the same data set have James at No. 1).That would be an anomalous ranking, however, as the vast majority of advanced statistics side with James in this debate. The more interesting tidbit from such analysis might just be that Curry is within striking distance in most of the numbers, and that, statistically, there’s a good case to be made that Curry is superior on offense to Durant. James’s statistics are too overwhelming to be surpassed, but Curry is as close as anyone in the game. read more

Promising High School Basketball Player Collapses and Dies During

James Hampton (photo via Twitter)A skilled athlete from Charlotte, North Carolina’s AAU program, died on Saturday, May 26, at the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League game in Hampton, VA.James Hampton, 17, collapsed on the basketball court against Nike Phamily during the second half. The Liberty Heights senior was running down the court and turned towards the referee and said “Hey ref” then fell to the floor according to Team United director Jacoby Davis. One of the medical assistants checked Hampton’s pulse after applying chest compressions, but there was no pulse.“It’s hard to even explain,” Davis told The Charlotte Observer. “To have a kid in your program with so much life — that’s just the kind of kid he was. He was always happy. For something like this to happen, I can’t even explain it. And to have to talk to a parent not even in town and tell him that his son has died, well, that’s more devastating.”The coach said Hampton had suffered from seizures in the past.“He just fell down on the floor… He had seizures a year ago — and I remember [one of the Team United coaches] telling me that, ‘I saw his eyes rolling back in his head.’ I ran on the court thinking he was having a seizure. A trainer came over and said he didn’t know what was wrong. Another trainer checked his pulse. He said he didn’t have a pulse. It got crazy after that,” Davis said.NBA Hall of Famer and former Chicago Bulls Player Scottie Pippen tweeted, “Emotional day at Nike EYBL in Virginia after the passing of James Hampton.”Emotional day at Nike EYBL in Virginia after the passing of James Hampton. My thoughts go out to the young man’s family, friends and teammates. RIP, James. 🙏🏿— Scottie Pippen (@ScottiePippen) May 27, 2018The team finished their tournament on Sunday and honored Hampton.One of the coaches Edward Joyner Jr. of Hampton University who’d been scouting Hampton as a possible Class of 2019 prospect said, “He was one of those kids who wanted to do something to better himself and his family and was trying to make the right steps to do that. And he wanted to use basketball and college.” read more

Jimmy Garoppolo Is The NFLs Most Expensive Lottery Ticket

42Jimmy GaroppoloSF201712-16437.0 Jimmy Garoppolo’s raw stats were impressive…Most raw passing yards in a five-game stretch for post-1970 NFL quarterbacks under age 30 (within first 16 career starts) 1Dan MarinoMIA19841-5899.9 1Andrew LuckIND20128-121,625 6Brett FavreGB199210-14405.1+107.0 Source: 4Kirk CousinsWAS20142-61,571 5Rex GrossmanCHI20061-5517.1+114.1 Jimmy reshaped the 49ers’ outlook in just five gamesBiggest gains in FiveThirtyEight’s Elo rating over a five-game stretch for QBs under age 30 who ranked among the top 50 in yards above backup over the same span of games 7Dan MarinoMIA19841-51,527 8Matt CasselNE20087-111,520 3Nick FolesPHI20139-13696.9 10Billy VolekTEN200412-161,473 4Russell WilsonSEA201212-16591.5+118.2 Still, it’s difficult to deny Garoppolo’s effect on the 49ers’ play down the stretch last season. Going into his first start (Week 13 against the Bears), San Francisco had a 1288 Elo rating — FiveThirtyEight’s preferred gauge of team strength at any given moment — which ranked second to last in the NFL. By the time Garoppolo had helped the Niners engineer their fifth straight win, San Francisco’s Elo had risen to 1452, good for a much more respectable 22nd in the league. That 164-point boost in team Elo was the most for any QB in the top 50 of our five-game leaderboard above, and it might be the best indication of how much potential Garoppolo brings to the table for his first season directing San Francisco’s offense. Includes playoffs.Source: Includes playoffs.*Yards above backup is a metric that credits a QB for his passing and rushing yards, with adjustments for touchdowns and interceptions, and the defensive quality of the teams he faced.Source: PRO-FOOTBALL-REFERENCE.COM … QuarterbackTeamYearGm. SpanYds Above BackupElo Gain 2Kurt WarnerSTL199911-15725.8 5Boomer EsiasonCIN198512-16639.3 …but he falls upon further adjustmentMost adjusted yards above backup* in a five-game stretch for post-merger NFL quarterbacks under age 30 (within first 16 career starts) 9Jon KitnaSEA19996-10411.5+104.8 3Cam NewtonCAR20111-51,610 QuarterbackTeamYearGM. spanYds above backup 9Richard ToddNYJ19773-7603.2 10Dak PrescottDAL20167-11602.7 7Tony EasonNE19844-8623.0 QuarterbackTeamYearGm. spanPass Yards 5Kurt WarnerSTL199911-151,563 9Daunte CulpepperMIN20007-111,499 2Marc BulgerSTL20034-81,624 No quarterback has ever earned more with less of a sample than Jimmy Garoppolo. After a midseason trade, Tom Brady’s latest former understudy had just five starts for the San Francisco 49ers1In his first appearance with the team, he went 2 for 2 with a touchdown in relief of C.J. Beathard. before becoming eligible for free agency. He won every one of those games for the previously moribund team and was handed $137.5 million for five years in return, which made him the highest paid QB in the NFL at the time. Again, this was for five starts of work in San Francisco — or 246 fewer games than Brady has started in New England.There’s really nothing else to go on. Garoppolo had played so sparingly before being traded to the 49ers that Bill Belichick and company were able to get only a second-round pick in return.There’s no debating that Garoppolo was very good in the scarlet and gold. The only question is how good. Is the weight of the sample such that fans should expect Garoppolo to earn his contract and propel the 49ers into a new era of excellence? Or is he overrated, piling up passing volume for a 1-10 team that was playing out the string on a lost season?According to classic barometers like passing yardage, Garoppolo’s five-game run to close last season does indeed rank among the most impressive rattled off by a young quarterback in NFL history. Going back to the 1970 NFL-AFL merger, we looked for similar five-game runs within a QB’s first 16 games as a team’s primary passer,2Meaning he led the team in passing attempts during the game but wasn’t necessarily the starter. filtering for QBs under age 30 — passers who generally fit Garoppolo’s profile as a fresh starter in the league. Only five quarterbacks — Andrew Luck, Marc Bulger, Cam Newton, Kirk Cousins and Kurt Warner — had a stretch of five consecutive games with more raw passing yards than Garoppolo did: 7Vince FerragamoLAR19803-7586.4+106.3 4Colin KaepernickSFO201215-19679.8 10Dan MarinoMIA19841-5899.9+93.6 3Ben RoethlisbergerPIT20044-8433.6+119.1 That the stretch represented Garoppolo’s entire body of work as his new team’s starter makes him look even more impressive — and that’s without considering his pair of exceptional games in 2016 as New England’s fill-in while Brady was suspended for his role in Deflategate.But there’s more to evaluating a quarterback than simple passing yards. If we take into account touchdowns, interceptions and rushing stats (plus adjust for strength of opponent) using our “yards above backup” metric, Garoppolo’s stretch-run performance takes a bit of a step back relative to history.Over those five games, Garoppolo had six touchdowns but also five interceptions, and he added nothing with his legs. He also faced a mixed bag of defenses that ranged from dominant (the Jaguars) to mediocre (the Bears) to downright bad (the Texans). And the Week 17 win against the division-winning Rams is less striking when you consider that L.A. sat many of its starters, including defensive player of the year Aaron Donald and standouts Alec Ogletree, Connor Barwin and Robert Quinn. After adjusting for all of that, Garoppolo’s five-game stretch still cracks the top 50 for young post-merger QBs, but it no longer seems quite as reliable a predictor of his future — particularly relative to the size of his contract. For every Dan Marino atop the ranking, there are some Tony Easons and Richard Todds as well. Not to mention the very glaring presence of a previous San Francisco QB much higher on the list: Colin Kaepernick. When adjusted for opponent strength, Kaepernick’s 2012 run from Week 16 to the Super Bowl was topped by only three quarterbacks in our sample. 6Jimmy GaroppoloSF201712-161,542 2Nick FolesPHI20139-13696.9+138.6 8Joe MontanaSF19812-6495.8+105.6 1Jimmy GaroppoloSF201712-16437.0+164.1 8Chad PenningtonNYJ200213-17612.7 6Daunte CulpepperMIN20004-8630.1 While the 49ers’ offensive boost, from 17 points per game with other starting quarterbacks to 28.8 with Garoppolo, can’t be fully explained by their QB’s statistics, there’s no doubt that much of this was earned from scrimmage. In its 11 games without him as the starter, San Francisco averaged 4.9 yards per play, 24th in the league. At 65.6 plays per game, that adds up to 322 yards. With Garoppolo, the Niners averaged 6.1 yards per play, which ranked fourth in offensive efficiency during games 12 through 16. And the play count also rose, to 67.2 plays on average, resulting in 410 yards per game.To quantify that boost of 88 yards per game, consider that NFL teams since 1990 have generated an average of 1 point for every 15.4 yards. So that equals 5.7 more expected points for the 49ers with Garoppolo at the controls (26.6 points per game) than without (20.9), not adjusting for that mixed bag of opponent quality.While about 6 points of added value may not sound like much, it’s what the oddsmakers subtract from a team when a top NFL quarterback is forced to miss a game. And we can definitely count Las Vegas among Garoppolo’s believers. This year, the sports books expect the 49ers to win 8.5 games with a full season of Garoppolo. That’s after they expected just five wins for the team before the start of last season, when Garoppolo was still stuck behind Brady. read more

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