Los Angeles Galaxy Players celebrate victory over Juventus
Los Angeles (08/04/2013) - When a pair of two-time defending champions in their respective leagues met at Dodger Stadium, even the Los Angeles Galaxy were a bit surprised to come out on top of mighty Juventus.
Landon Donovan scored the tiebreaking goal on a pass from Robbie Keane in the 60th minute, and the Galaxy beat Juventus 3-1 Saturday night in the International Champions Cup tournament.
Nobody from the Galaxy ascribed much importance to the result, but the Galaxy's fans got extra enjoyment from their club's first appearance at Dodger Stadium, the venerable 51-year-old Southern California landmark.
''Our team played well, (but) the result isn't going to change anything in this world,'' Los Angeles coach Bruce Arena said. ''We played well against a very good team, but we understand it's an exhibition. I don't want to play them when
it really counts.''
Although the rest of the tournament schedule hasn't been announced, Los Angeles is expected to play in the third-place game in Miami on Wednesday night, likely against the loser of Chelsea's match with AC Milan on Sunday outside New York.
Do you think their dreamlike winning streak will continue? Tell us your thoughts in the comments and call (877) 251-3289 to place a wager.
US wins fifth CONCACAF Gold Cup title
he United States won its fifth CONCACAF Gold Cup title on Sunday, defeating Panama 1-0 in the final before a crowd of 57,920 at Soldier Field. Brek Shea scored the game-winning goal in the 68th minute, just seconds after entering the game as a substitute.
It also is the first international title as a coach for Jurgen Klinsmann, who won the 1990 World Cup and 1996 European Championship with Germany. Klinsmann was ousted for the match but it didn't seem to impact the game.
Kyle Beckerman was named the Man of the Match for his outstanding display in center midfield.
This was the 11th straight victory for the Americans, four more than their previous record, and they likely will leapfrog Mexico as the best team from CONCACAF when the next FIFA rankings come out Aug. 8.
So will the US winning streak continue? Tell us what you think in the comments below.
Against all odds, Phil Mickelson got a chance to celebrate early. A brilliant closing round
at challenging Muirfield made it possible.
Mickelson won the claret jug for the first time and his fifth major
championship with a 5-under 66 on Sunday, matching the best round of the
tournament on a day when the other contenders -- including Tiger Woods -- faded away.
2013 Open Champion Phil Mickelson talked with Doug Bell after coming from
behind on Sunday to win his first Open Championship and fifth major.
Lefty birdied four of the last six holes, winning by three strokes and
emphatically erasing the memory of all those close calls that didn't go his way
-- the latest one just last month when he was runner-up at the U.S. Open for a
staggering sixth time.
"This is such an accomplishment for me," Mickelson said. "I never knew if I'd
be able to develop the game and the shots to play links golf effectively. To
play what is arguably the best round of my career, to putt the way I putted, to
shoot the round of my life, it just feels amazing to win the claret jug."
Overall, Mickelson has eight runner-up finishes in the majors, including one
at golf's oldest major championship just two years ago.
Now, at age 43, he's finally got his name on the claret jug, three-fourths of
the way along to a career Grand Slam and assuring he'll go down as one of the
greats of the game.
"I putted soooo good," Mickelson said.
He began his amazing finish with a 8-footer for birdie at the 13th, getting
his score back to even par and giving him a score that he thought would be in
the mix at the end if he simply parred out.
Mickelson did much better than that, rolling in a 20-footer at the 14th for
another birdie, reaching the green in two at the par-5 17th to set up yet
another birdie, and closing it with a 10-footer on the final hole for a 3-under
Even though there were still four groups still on the course, Mickelson knew
he had done more than enough to win. He pumped his fists and let out a yell. His
caddie burst into tears. His wife and kids celebrated just off the green.
Lee Westwood began the day with a two-stroke lead
but was again denied his first major title. He struggled to a 75 that left him
four shots back, and Mickelson's victory was assured when Westwood didn't come
close to making the eagle he needed on the 17th. Woods was two shots out at the
start but a 74 left him five shots behind the winner.
Mickelson was the only player to break par over four days at a baked-out
course that bedeviled the world's best golfers.
Everyone but Mickelson, that is. Henrik Stenson was the runner-up at 284. Ian Poulter
and Adam Scott finished another shot back.
"Phil must've played really well," Westwood said. "Five-under par is a good
round of golf this afternoon."
The San Antonio Spurs have won 4 NBA Championship Titles in their franchise history. They have won titles in 1999, 2003, 2005, 2007. All years that end with an odd number. They are also undefeated in the Finals. The Miami Heat have won 2 Titles in 2006 and 2012. Both years end with an even number. They lost in 2011 to the Dallas Mavericks but returned the next year to beat the Oklahoma City Thunder. Will the odds and even streak continue tonight?
The most impressive statistic coming into Thursday's Game 7 has to be the fact that the Spurs are 4-0 this postseason after suffering a loss.
In those four wins, San Antonio has won easily, by an average of 18.5 points per game. But Tuesday's Game 6 loss was unlike any of the other losses the Spurs have been dealt in these playoffs.
San Antonio led by five points with under 30 seconds left to play, a game the Spurs win 99 out of 100 times. An overtime loss at this stage is gut-wrenching without a doubt, but the Spurs' most recent defeat falls under the category of demoralizing
Plus, the Spurs will be putting their stat up against some overwhelming history. You have to go all the way back to 1978 to find the last time a team won Game 7 of the NBA Finals on the road
Will Tony Parker
and company become the first squad in 35 years to win a championship-clinching Game 7 in hostile territory, or will the Heat join the list of teams over the past four decades who have secured the crown on their
A win in Game 7 would give the Heat back-to-back NBA titles, providing them with their own special place in NBA history as one of only a handful of teams to win consecutive championships.
Individually, LeBron James
, Dwyane Wade
and Chris Bosh
would all add another ring to their Hall of Fame resumes. Wade would become a three-time champion and James would be just four titles shy of Michael Jordan
LeBron would also join another very short and impressive list with a win. NBA betting is becoming more popular each year. This is known as one of the sports where a smart bettor who practiced proper money management can make some really huge profits. Once a bettor begins to study and understand NBA Odds, he or she can gain a better understanding of how the bookies set their numbers. The bookies set a lot of these NBA Odds with the public in mind. They know the public is going to bet the Lakers and Bulls (and other well known teams) every week or so there are some great situations to get good numbers by going against teams like that.
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Insiders say it really depends on the performance of the Blackhawk's Captain Jonathan Toews. The Winnipeg native has been relatively absent in the Post Season.
With his team trying to avoid falling into a 3-1 hole in the Stanley Cup Final, Chicago Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville seems prepared to reunite Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane on the same line for Game 4 on Wednesday night.
The two have rarely played together at even-strength over the first three games of the series against Boston but were back on a line with Bryan Bickell during Chicago's pre-game skate at TD Garden on Wednesday.
Chicago Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville didn't want to talk about the injury that forced him to scratch forward Marian Hossa from the Stanley Cup finals against the Boston Bruins.
And why not?
``I think that's self-explanatory,' Quenneville said, once again declining to explain the secrecy that is as much a part of the NHL culture as playoff beards and Zambonis.
Hossa's surprise scratch from Game 3 and the one-word explanation - ``upper' - for the part of his body that was injured is part of a long-running cat-and-mouse game NHL teams play. The theory goes that any revealing information about injuries could become a competitive disadvantage.
Hossa is expected to play in Game 4, Quenneville said Tuesday, but only after making it clear that ``I'm not going to get (into) exactly what the injury is or where it occurred.'
``It's sort of a secret society in the hockey world and in the injury world,' Blackhawks forward Dave Bolland said. ``You don't want other teams having any injury information at all.'
Asked if he had seen Hossa or had a chance to talk to him, Bolland said, ``I don't know.'
You don't know if you've seen him or talked to him?
``I don't know if I've seen him,' Bolland repeated with a sly smile.
Tuukka Rask stopped 28 shots from the depleted Blackhawks to help the Bruins win 2-0 on Monday night and move two wins from their second Stanley Cup title in three seasons.
Game 4 is Wednesday night in Boston before the series returns to Chicago for a fifth game.
Hossa's mysterious injury may have been a turning point in Game 3, but it's hardly unusual in the secretive world of hockey injuries. Players and coaches say they just don't talk about what's hurting, partly because they don't want to seem weak in a sport where they hit each other for a living.
But mostly they don't want let the other team know where to aim.
``If I'm going out to battle and I have an injury to any part of my body, I don't want the other side to know what it is,' Bruins forward Shawn Thornton said.
Injury information can also help the opponent strategize. Quenneville was so concerned about giving the Bruins advance notice of even a few minutes that he didn't let substitute Ben Smith skate in the warmup even though there was a chance he would need to play.
``I just didn't want to tip our hand that there's something going on,' the coach said.
``Ben was ready. I knew he was doing everything,' Quenneville said. ``We were hopeful that Hoss was playing, and Ben was doing everything to get ready. He was ready.'
No hard feelings, Bruins coach Claude Julien said. After all, he would do - and has done - the same thing.
``I respect that from other teams. When you're playing against each other, you know exactly where everybody is coming from,' Julien said.
``There's times where you have to protect your players, and I understand it. I know it's frustrating for you guys as media. You're trying to share that information. The most important thing for us, we can take the heat for that, is protecting your players.'
So, how to tell if an injury is minor? When a team actually admits it exists.
``I'll share one with you: Yesterday in a warmup, Zdeno Chara fell down, got a cut over the eye,' Julien said, to laughter, of the injury to his captain that had already been confirmed and reported. ``I'll let you know about that. That's not a hidden injury.'
The Bruins also confirmed without delay the broken leg that knocked Gregory Campbell out of the Eastern Conference finals against Pittsburgh. But that was only because Campbell was out for the season after taking a shot to his leg on national TV and struggling to get off the ice.
``If it's something that doesn't put your player in danger, I don't see why you shouldn't talk about it,' Julien said.
Players say they don't have to be told not to discuss injuries; they grow up with the culture in junior and minor leagues. Blackhawks forward Patrick Sharp said he doesn't remember when he first learned the subject was off-limits, but it was long before he reached the NHL.
And hockey players are not alone.
``It's not just here,' Thornton said. ``I don't think Bill Belichick is (listing) all the injuries they have, either.'
But even the notoriously uncommunicative New England Patriots coach is required by NFL rules to say what body part is injured. NHL coaches have to narrow it only to ``upper body' or ``lower body,' which means a player with a concussion and one with a broken finger would have the same diagnosis.
During the playoffs, information is even more scarce.
``It's that time of year where everybody's kind of battling. I would say that not just injuries, strategy, all that kind of information we're not going to talk about,' Sharp said. ``It's all part of being this close to the ultimate goal.'
And does he have any injuries he cares to mention?
The Miami Heat find themselves down 2-1 in the NBA Finals against the San Antonio Spurs as they prepare to hit the hardwood as betting underdogs in Game 4 on Thursday night.
They might end up as favorites if Tony Parker can't go with a seriously strained hamstring. The Spurs point guard is day-to-day and didn't sound too convincing at a press conference Wednesday.
The Spurs trounced the Heat 113-77 as a 2-point home favorite on the NBA betting lines in Game 3 of the best-of-seven set on Tuesday night, with Danny Green scoring a team-high 27 points.
LeBron James was held to just 15 points in the loss for Miami and he promised a better performance, one that would put the team on his shoulders if needed for Game 4.
The betting consensus was split right down the middle as of Thursday morning and he line had moved from -2 to -1 in early wagering.
The Spurs sport records of 58-24 and 39-41-2 ATS heading into this matchup, while the Heat sit at 66-16 and 46-36 ATS on the season. The OVER/UNDER records are 36-45-1 for the Spurs and 43-39 for the Heat.
On the opening line for this matchup, the Spurs sat as 2-point favorites. The total had been pegged earlier by the oddsmakers at 188.5.
Power Rankings / Prediction:
The Power Rankings have the No. 6-rated Heat taking on the No. 3-rated Spurs in this contest. Computer models indicate a possible 107-106 win for the Heat on Thursday.
How They Match Up:
The game also pits San Antonio's No. 4-ranked offense, averaging 103 PPG, against a Heat defense that ranks No. 5 at 95 PPG. The Spurs field goal percentage has averaged 48.1% so far, less than the Heat shooters have achieved on the year, 49.6% per game.
In comparing how the teams stack up statistically, the Heat own the league's No. 3-rated mark, allowing 94.4 points per game when playing on the road. San Antonio, on the other hand, rates No. 5 in scoring on their home court.
Miami lost its last outing, a 113-77 result against the Spurs on June 11. The Heat failed to cover in that game as a 2-point underdog, while the 190 combined points took the game OVER the total. Miami was run off the court by the Spurs on Tuesday as San Antonio blasted them 113-77 at AT&T Center.
Miami Heat Trends:
When playing on Thursday are 6-4
Before playing San Antonio are 6-4
After playing San Antonio are 3-7
After a loss are 10-0
San Antonio Spurs Trends:
When playing on Thursday are 8-2
Before playing Miami are 9-1
After playing Miami are 6-4
After a win are 7-3
A few Heat at Spurs trends to consider:
Miami is 21-4 SU in its last 25 games on the road
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Miami's last 6 games
The total has gone UNDER in 10 of Miami's last 13 games when playing on the road against San Antonio
The total has gone UNDER in 19 of Miami's last 25 games when playing San Antonio
San Antonio is 8-1 SU in its last 9 games
San Antonio is 7-1 SU in its last 8 games at home
San Antonio is 13-2 SU in its last 15 games when playing at home against Miami
The total has gone OVER in 6 of San Antonio's last 7 games at home
Miami at San Antonio, Sunday, June 16
San Antonio home to Miami, Sunday, June 16
Here is something you won't hear very often - Israel beat England in Football. Against all odds
, the David and Goliath match-up turned in Israel's favor in the last minutes of the game with a goal by Ofir Krieff to put Israel up 1-0.
There was a sense of pure delight among the Israel players after they finished their home UEFA European Under-21 Championship finals with a 1-0 victory against England, even if they bowed out at the group stage.
"I wanted to run over to him but afterwards I saw nothing because everybody was all over me"
Ofir Krieff talks about coach Guy Luzon
Goalscorer Ofir Krieff, playing in front of his home-town Jerusalem crowd, dedicated the win to coach Guy Luzon
while Nir Biton explained what an honor it was to captain this side as he summed up the three years of preparation ahead of the tournament.Ofir Krieff, Israel midfielder
To score in the capital city, in my home town, in front of my home fans, is a fantastic feeling. We did a really good job. The credit goes to the team and not to me even though I scored. It's all thanks to the great work of the staff and the players.
I think that we had a really good tournament overall. To win four points against these kind of teams is a big achievement. We had some criticism and it wasn't always right. This team has a lot of potential and we proved it today against England which is nothing to take for granted.
When I scored I just thought that we had finally got the win after this hard work. The credit goes to Guy [Luzon]. It was highly important to finish with a good taste because of him and I'm happy that we gave him this goodbye present. “I wanted to run over to him but afterwards I saw nothing because everybody was all over me”.
What do I take from this tournament? Great guys, and we had three years of preparation which was insane. I will take all of these forward with me in my life. I played with talented players here.Boris Kleyman, Israel goalkeeper
I'm used to the fact that goalkeepers are always being criticized. It doesn't matter how good you are, you will concede in the end. I know what I'm capable of and people that see me know me for the good and the bad. I will keep going my way and believe in myself.
I have done a lot of hard preparation over the year. I didn't play too much for Hapoel Tel-Aviv so it was mainly preparation for me. I don't think we started as well as we could have done but things were fixed in the end. We conceded in the 92nd minute against Norway and we broke down against Italy.
It's hard to describe the fans in one word. We are so happy to finish with a win, especially so that Guy will go in his new direction feeling good.Nir Biton, Israel midfielder
It started with great excitement and it got better because we played better even though we got a bad result. In the closing match we gave it our all and we played great. It's a great result and we are highly satisfied.
“I can't believe only a week has passed. We prepared for this tournament for the last three years and it went by in a minute”. I enjoyed this tournament so much and I think this is the biggest experience of my life. I realized before the tournament how much of an honor it is to be captain of this team. It's not every day that an Israeli player gets the chance to lead his team at an U21 EURO. This is pride in a way I can't describe.