I think this is the first time I¡¯ve seen ABC devote time to a political reality outside of the bubble of their reality shows

Rachel¡¯s older sister¡¯s husband, who¡¯s white, says, ¡°I can¡¯t help but notice you are a white.¡± He asks Nick if he¡¯s dated a black woman before. Nick says he¡¯s been on dates with black women, but never seriously dated one. He also says he realizes Rachel is black, but that he likes her for who she is as Rachel.

One of Rachel¡¯s sisters says to the camera, ¡°At the same time, as nice as that sounds, right now with this climate that we¡¯re in, I feel like we¡¯ve seen more racism come out, and he needs to be aware.¡±

To be serious for a second: I think this is the first time I¡¯ve seen ABC devote time to a political reality outside of the bubble of their reality shows ¡ª someone on Twitter said that this episode was filmed the week after the election. Again, it¡¯s a low bar that an honest conversation about race on The Bachelor has me flabbergasted, but it feels like a step in the right direction.

Nick tells Rachel¡¯s mom how much he likes Rachel, and after making sure Nick is aware that race cannot be ignored, Rachel¡¯s mom seems to be OK with him dating her daughter.

¡°It¡¯s still a short time,¡± she says to Rachel, ¡°But I like what I see with Nick. So far he seems comfortable. What attracted me to your dad was that he knew who he was and where he was going. He was very self-assured. Confident. And that¡¯s what I see in Nick.¡±

Game Youth Victor Cruz Jersey ¡°That¡¯s a huge statement,¡± Rachel says to the camera. She is jazzed, and her smile makes me feel like maybe there¡¯s some good left in the world.

So, her sister and her mother are both like, ¡°Girl, what you doing?¡± And then her mom says something very moving to the camera:
Authentic Kids Lee Smith Jersey
¡°I don¡¯t want to go through [Vanessa getting her heart broken] again because it¡¯s tough for me too.¡±
My mom texts me, ¡°smart mom¡± as Vanessa¡¯s mom speaks. Then she texts me, ¡°The dog ate all the dental floss.¡±

Everyone is either crying or very unhappy in Montreal. This is painful. But we¡¯re off to meet Vanessa¡¯s dad and his family, so maybe that¡¯ll go better.

Menzel also sang the national anthem at the 2014 MLB All-Star game

Here’s her rendition of the anthem before the final game of the New England Patriots’ undefeated 2007 regular season, a showdown with the New York Giants that would eventually beat them in the Super Bowl. Even though it’s hard to hear because of the recording, Menzel starts singing at either 0:26 or 0:27, and finishes at 2:02 ¡ª a robust 1:34 or 1:35. And that’s pre-superstardom!

Kids Cam Johnson Jersey Menzel also sang the national anthem at the 2014 MLB All-Star game, and clocked in at 1:57 (it’s from 2:20 to 4:17 above).
Gabe Jackson Elite Jersey
And she’s stretched a rendition of the anthem to nearly three minutes before, for a Macy’s special televised on the Fourth of July last year.

All three of those renditions are quite good, to my ear, but they’re all a bit long. The current over/under for the anthem at Bovada is 2:01. The Super Bowl is the biggest single performing stage in the world. And Menzel has never been hotter than she is right now.

But what role did that person play, really? You might wonder if it’s a player or coach, and then you might wonder if other people get rings. The answer to that question is yes: a whole lot of people get rings. That’s because a whole lot of people are involved in the running of a professional football team, as it happens.

There are a lot of variables in play as to who gets rings, but generally you can expect every player on the 53-man roster, the entire coaching staff and the front office to earn rings. The NFL pays for the cost of 150 rings for the winning team, with a max cost of around $7,000 per unit, depending on the cost of gold and diamonds at the time. That usually covers the bulk of people the team wants to gives the rings to, but it can go above that number if it buys the extra rings.

With Alex Reyes done for the season, Cardinals need Michael Wacha

Mike Matheny’s eyes lit up.

He tends to heap praise on his players anyway and, in mid-February, what’s not to like? Matheny’s St. Louis Cardinals haven’t begun competing yet, either within their clubhouse for jobs or on the field. The stress and, occasionally, anguish of the season is six weeks away. Nobody has made the team yet, at least in theory. Aside from injured players, nobody has yet been sent packing. Every player professes to be in the best shape of his life.

Still, Matheny’s optimism felt genuine rather than contrived when he strolled away from the bullpen area, where Michael Wacha had just thrown his first bullpen session of the spring, and was greeted with a question about how his whip-like young right-hander looked. He smiled warmly.

“That’s as good as I’ve seen him in a long time,” Matheny said.

That is just an extreme example of what happens when the franchise tag strains relationships between player and team, but sometimes the holdout threat can help speed talks at the bargaining table.

Last year, the Denver Broncos tagged Von Miller, fresh off a Super Bowl MVP campaign, and unquestionably the most important player on their defense. They went back and forth for several months, with Miller making the usual threats about not playing, but cooler heads prevailed and Miller got the blockbuster contract he wanted all along. Few people would argue that the holdout threat was always a negotiating tactic, and that’s about the only thing players like Miller have to hold on to when they get stuck with the tag.

Are there any positives to getting tagged?

Nike released a special behind-the-scenes video with each athlete detailing why they decided to be a part of the commercial

A new ad from Nike delivers a strong, clear message about the importance of equality in sports and life. The commercial ¡ª starring LeBron James, Serena Williams, Kevin Durant, Megan Rapinoe, Victor Cruz, Dalilah Muhammad, Gabby Douglas, Michael B. Jordan, and Alicia Keys ¡ª shows fields and courts around America with the following voiceover.

¡°Is this the land history promised? Here, within these lines. On this concrete court. This patch of turf. Here, you¡¯re defined by your actions — not your looks or beliefs. Equality should have no boundaries. The bonds we find here should run past these lines. Opportunity should not discriminate. The ball should bounce the same for everyone. Worth should out-shine color. If we can be equals here … (LeBron finishes the line) we can be equals everywhere.¡±
Game Kids Wayne Gretzky Jersey
Nike released a special behind-the-scenes video with each athlete detailing why they decided to be a part of the commercial, and explain why its message is so important to them.

This, from LeBron James: Hightower¡¯s value to the Patriots was highlighted with his exceptional second-half performance in Super Bowl LI. He¡¯s a defensive captain, signal-caller, and is in his prime (turning 27 in March), which are all positives when it comes to a team making a big financial investment.

¡°We all have a purpose in life, and in order for us to be as great as we can be ¡ª as a nation, as a world, we all have to feel empowered.¡±
Serena Williams said the following:

¡°My view is that sometimes we as a people, we give everyone equal opportunity on the court, we give them an equal chance. We look at them the same way. Off the court we might overlook people or say ¡®Oh, they don¡¯t deserve the same opportunity. Oh, they look different, or they¡¯re not like me.¡¯ When in all actuality, we all are.¡±
Cleveland Browns Elite Jersey Bravo, Nike and all the athletes and talents involved.

Joel Embiid suffered a small tear in his meniscus on Jan. 20

The most improbable 13-game winning streak in the history of the NBA is over. Just three of Miami’s 13 victims — Houston, Golden State and Atlanta — were .500-or-better teams. The streak also included a 10-game stretch that, according to ESPN’s Basketball Power Index, will rank as the second-easiest span of 10 games for any team all season long. How much do you downgrade Miami’s achievements based on those realities? Not much here. We want to go the other way and hat-tip these guys because all the February drama we’ve seen league-wide (Melo vs. Phil, Oak vs. Dolan, KD vs. OKC) kept the Heat’s crazy win streak more under the radar than it should have been … no matter who they were beating.

Philadelphia 76ers: Joel Embiid suffered a small tear in his meniscus on Jan. 20 and is dealing with a bone bruise in his knee that will likely keep him out until after the All-Star break. Also, Jahlil Okafor’s days in Philly are numbered, with the Bulls being rumored to be the hottest team in pursuit. But one of the bigger stories from the past week is the play of rookie Dario Saric, who averaged 19.0 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.3 steals and 2.3 3-pointers in his past four games.
Jonathan Casillas Limited Jersey
Authentic Womens Ha Ha Clinton-Dix Jersey Dolan on Sunday was flanked by other ex-Knicks, with Bernard King to his left and Sprewell to his right. Ex-Knick Larry Johnson was sitting next to Sprewell. Johnson, a Knicks employee, told the New York Daily News that he was conflicted about attending Sunday’s game after Oakley’s arrest on Wednesday.

In total, nine former Knicks attended the club’s win over the Spurs. A team official acknowledged that the ex-players attended to show that the organization supports its former players in the wake of the Oakley incident, as Dolan claimed in interviews after Oakley’s arrest.

Jets defenseman Tyler Myers out 6-8 weeks after lower-body surgery

The injury door that opened for some promising Winnipeg Jets rookie defensemen will stay open for the rest of the season.

Jets coach Paul Maurice confirmed on Tuesday that defenseman Tyler Myers will miss most of the regular season after undergoing surgery for a lower-body injury on Monday. The Jets did not specify further on the nature of the injury, but Maurice did say it¡¯s not related to the two lower-body surgeries he underwent last season.

Myers suffered the injury against the Colorado Avalanche on Nov. 11 and has missed the last 39 games. Maurice said the Jets delayed the surgery as long as they could hoping he would improve, but they had to make a decision this week.

¡°He had an injury that there¡¯s a long rehab on,¡± Maurice said. ¡°For 90 percent of the people (who sustain it) it¡¯s just long, and they eventually get past that (pain) threshold, and he never got past that threshold.¡±

The officials ruled ¡°inconclusive¡± on the offside, which sparked ire from Chicago fans and elation from the Wild.

Here¡¯s video of the biggest highlights of the review, which included the officials using an iPhone to call up the war room in Toronto for reasons unspecified.

Game Youth Shane Doan Jersey The Blackhawks have serious reason to be frustrated at the call, as Parise himself wasn¡¯t across the blue line to touch up before Charlie Coyle went back into the zone. If anything, there¡¯s doubt that the puck touched Coyle¡¯s stick while Parise was still in the zone, as the angle shown doesn¡¯t make it 100 percent certain.

That’s not offside. Puck has to touch stick. Parise can clear zone, delayed offside. That said, I’m still waiting for the other angle.
Elite Kids Omer Asik Jersey
Paul Maurice gives the full update on Tyler Myers, Stafford’s return, and facing the Minnesota Wild tonight at MTS Centre.

Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome was less generous, and said the team “came up short” of its Super Bowl goals

It becomes even more crucial now that they spend as much as they possibly can or risk losing it. If they don’t spend it on incoming players, they must forfeit the remainder of unspent money to the Player’s Union and they will divvy it up amongst the players across the league.

How much more do they need to spend? They must spend about 95% of the salary cap money over the next two seasons. After the expected cuts, they would need to spend some $57 million this free agency period to keep pace for next year and avoid having to spend even a higher percentage then. The amount they must spend the next two years goes up some $40 million relative to their spending over the past two years.

That’s the most any team in the NFL must spend. The Jaguars currently have more to spend under the 2015 cap, but their cap floor is at 82.2% (2% higher than the Raiders).

Bargains are great, but in this case the old adage ‘Use it or lose it’ definitely holds true.

“I think it’s an A. A-plus is a Super Bowl,” Bisciotti said. “I think that what John [Harbaugh] did, and the way he handled the coaches and the players was masterful.”

Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome was less generous, and said the team “came up short” of its Super Bowl goals; however, he, too, praised the job done by Harbaugh. Newsome also noted that re-signing Forsett, who is an impending free agent, is a priority for the Ravens.

Even with Rice no longer on the team, Newsome said his situation will still impact the way team evaluates players in free agency and the NFL Draft.

“The one area where we will definitely take a hard look and it will be tough for us to bring a player to Baltimore is someone that has domestic abuse in their background,” Newsome said. “Other than that, we will exhaust every character aspect of a player. But we believe in allowing the information to lead us to a decision.”

The Ravens are slated to pick No. 26 in the 2015 NFL Draft and are projected to take Arizona State wide receiver Jaelen Strong in the latest mock draft from SB Nation’s Dan Kadar.

the Kings trounced the Lakers 116-92, with Cousins’ 16-point third quarter tilting the game in Sacramento’s favor

Antoine Vermette Jersey
A white towel clings like Saran Wrap to DeMarcus Cousins’ nearly 300-pound body as he makes his way from the shower into the Kings’ locker room. It’s an hour after the final buzzer, and most of his teammates have long vacated the arc of wood-paneled lockers. Cousins’ stall is at the end; beside it, a pyramidal mass of reporters and videographers huddles in wait.

On this December night, the Kings trounced the Lakers 116-92, with Cousins’ 16-point third quarter tilting the game in Sacramento’s favor. But whatever pride he’s taken from the performance — what it says about the body of work he’s assembled in his seventh season, what it portends for the Kings as they prepare to hit the road just two games out of the playoffs — all of that is now secondary. Among the reporters stands Sacramento Bee columnist Andy Furillo — leather jacket, baseball cap atop strawberry hair, rimless glasses. Before Cousins even finishes toweling off, he engages Furillo, the author of an opinion piece lambasting Cousins’ choice of New York City nightlife venues the prior week — a piece that cites an earlier incident at a Tampa club in which Cousins’ brother, Jaleel, was tased and arrested.

The confrontation begins. Cousins wants to know whether Furillo knows Jaleel. He doesn’t. Then why would Furillo mention him in the column? Furillo replies that the altercation was relevant. Moreover, there’s a published video that captures it, and DeMarcus was there. Cousins suggests Furillo is simply out to criticize him. Then it escalates.

Adam Humphries Jersey A juggling 23-yard pass from Patriots quarterback Tom Brady to receiver Julian Edelman. Line judge Jeff Seeman came sprinting toward the play with a catch ruling, and the replay showed that Edelman had managed to keep the ball off the ground.

The winning touchdown run by Patriots running back James White, who managed to get the ball across the goal line before his knee touched the ground.

Matt Ryan finished atop our final MVP poll at the end of the regular season

Matt Ryan finished atop our final MVP poll at the end of the regular season, but with the runner-up playing opposite him in Super Bowl LI, it doesn’t mean Ryan is a shoo-in to win.

Here are r¨¦sum¨¦s for the top four contenders, as determined by our last poll, with the most compelling facets of their individual cases illustrated. A winner will be crowned Saturday night at NFL Honors.

Authentic Womens Buster Skrine Jersey Statistics compiled with the help of ESPN Stats & Information and only reflect the 2016 regular season.

Anchored the highest-scoring offense in the NFL, ranking among the top three in most major passing categories. Sustained a high level of performance, leading the Falcons to the No. 2 seed in the NFC and their first Super Bowl berth since the 1998 season.

Kept his promise to “run the table” from Week 11 on, ending the season on a six-game win streak en route to the NFC North title following a 4-6 start. There’s also his penchant for throwing Hail Marys, with three in the span of about 13 months, the last of which was his 64-yard heave to Randall Cobb just before halftime of Green Bay’s 38-13 victory over the New York Giants in the wild-card round.
Jordy Nelson Mens Jersey
Powered the Cowboys’ offense to a 13-3 record and No. 1 seeding in the NFC, leading the NFL in most rushing categories. Cemented himself among the best rookie running backs in league history with his 1,631 regular-season rushing yards, which rank third all time. Elliott was only 177 yards shy of breaking Eric Dickerson’s all-time rookie mark … and Elliott sat out Week 17.

The Falcons plummeted from NFC finalists in 2012 to back-to-back seasons below .500, putting Dimitroff’s job on the line.

“I knew that hierarchy would change,” Thomas Dimitroff said after owner Arthur Blank hired Dann Quinn as coach and put him in charge of personnel. “No question, you had to check your ego at the door.”

Elite Kids Mike Wagner Jersey Dimitroff bounced back from tough decisions. He missed on a big-money free-agent signing of defensive end Ray Edwards in 2011 and was part of a couple of drafts that failed to produce a steady contributor.

The Falcons plummeted from NFC finalists in 2012 to back-to-back seasons below .500, putting Dimitroff’s job on the line.

Owner Arthur Blank fired Smith, and there were questions about whether Dimitroff would remain, even as he participated in head-coaching interviews. For seven years, Dimitroff had final say on the 53-man roster, with Smith reporting to him.

“I knew that hierarchy would change,” he said of the 2015 offseason. “No question, you had to check your ego at the door.”

Antoine Vermette Authentic Jersey Dimitroff still didn’t know for certain that he would still have a job until Blank — who at that point had decided to hire Quinn as the Falcons’ next head coach while giving him final say over the 53-man roster — invited him to his sprawling Atlanta residence and essentially said, “I want you to stay, but you have to tell me if you can work through this. Do you have it in yourself to navigate these challenges and the perception of being demoted?”

Dimitroff did, as the Falcons’ structure was tweaked: Unlike 2008-14, both GM (Dimitroff) and coach (Quinn) would now report to Blank.

In their second Super Bowl meeting against the Giants, New England was favored again, but this time by only three. However, once again, the Giants won outright as the underdog. New England led by 8 points midway through the third quarter, but the Giants came back, with Ahmad Bradshaw scoring the game-winning touchdown with 1:06 left. Just like in their first Super Bowl meeting, the game stayed well below the total.