Posts Tagged ‘Sports’

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As the minutes wound down on Sunday at Paul Brown Stadium and Bengals fans looked for the exits, the band of Bears fans that remained began waving navy-and-orange blankets and chanting, “Let’s go Bears!” Yea! Bears fans travel with their team.

Afterward, in the locker room, Bears players joked and laughed and threw out words such as “rewarding” and “relief.”

Sure, the 33-7 victory over the Bengals brought the Bears’ record this season to a measly 4-9. And yes, it came against a hobbled, five-win team.

But the Bears went 49 days between victories — and two years and 25 days since last topping the 30-point mark in a game — so they and their fans were starved for celebration.

“I don’t think it was just Mitch (Trubisky); I think we all needed it,” tight end Adam Shaheen said. “We’ve been struggling, lost a couple of close ones. This was a great win we needed. And it was against a good team.

“When everything was clicking, everybody was getting opportunities. When you’re rolling, it helps out everybody.”

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Sunday’s heartbreaking and frustrating 23-16 loss to a beatable Packers’ team, probably got people saying, who cares about the positives from the game?

The once formidable Bears defense was incapable of shutting down an inexperienced Brett Hundley and a third-string running back. The offense picked up where it left off, doing absolutely nothing.

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The newest member of the Bears, wide receiver Dontrelle Inman, isn’t a bright light, but more of a flashlight.

In his Bears’ debut, Inman led the team with six receptions for 88 yards. That was the second most yards by a Bears receiver this season only behind Tre McBride III’s three receptions for 92 yards against the Saints. Against the Packers, McBride only had seven snaps – a surprising move for sure.

Still, Inman’s productive day was encouraging for a wide receiver group that has failed to provide much of an impact. Inman was able to create separation by running clean routes, which gave quarterback Mitch Trubisky throwing lanes.

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Despite Inman only being on the team for 20 days, Trubisky still targeted him four times in the fourth quarter and completed three of those passes.

It took one game for Trubisky to find his new go-to-guy.

But for the chemistry to improve for Trubisky and Inman, the Bears must continue to throw the football. It wasn’t until the Bears were trailing that they resorted to the passing game. That has been the common theme for the offense all season.

Moving forward, the Bears greatest threat to improving the passing game will be the duo of head coach John Fox and offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains. Fox likes to run despite opponents consistently stacking the box and Loggains must cater to Fox’s game plan. However, when passes are called, Loggains’ plays are questionable.

This inconsistency from the coaching staff has hurt the offense and if there is any hope for the unit to improve Fox and Loggains must settle on a happy medium of the run to pass plays.

The next opportunity to improve the passing game and to get Inman the ball will be against the Lions at Soldier Field this Sunday.

LiAngelo Ball’s shoplifting scandal has made it all the way up to President Donald Trump, and now older brother Lonzo Ball is reacting to the news.

The L.A. Lakers rookie responded Monday to reports that Trump had spoken to Chinese President Xi Jinping about resolving the case of LiAngelo and fellow UCLA basketball players Cody Riley and Jalen Hill. Here’s what he had to say, according to Bill Oram of the Orange County Register

Father LaVar recently advised Lonzo to focus on the Lakers, assuring him that the family was taking care of the matter. Now that the commander-in-chief is on his brother’s side as well, it should indeed be a lot easier for Lonzo to stay focused on the game and on helping the 5-8 Lakers get back on track.

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When the Chicago Bulls take on the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday night, forward Bobby Portis will take his spot on the bench and play back-up to Lauri Markkanen, possibly even see some reserve minutes throughout the game.

It will be Portis’ first action of the season after serving a team-issued eight-game suspension following an altercation with teammate Nikola Mirotic on October 17, which resulted in Mirotic suffering a concussion and facial fractures.

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Although he is no longer experiencing any concussion symptoms, the timetable for Mirotic’s return is not nearly as close at hand. In fact, he’s expected to miss several more weeks and that, understandably, does not sit well.

K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reports that Mirotic remains both upset about the altercation and distant from his teammates and the organization.

Though he is free of his concussion symptoms, Nikola Mirotic remains weeks away from returning from the two facial fractures that Portis caused with a punch to the face during an Oct. 17 altercation between the forwards in practice. Mirotic remains upset enough over the disparity in time of absences that he has had little contact with teammates, and his camp has made clear to management that, for now, it doesn’t see a way the two forwards can coexist.

Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg supports the return of Portis despite Mirotic’s continued frustration.

“This is something that, unfortunately, it happened,” Hoiberg said. “There was an altercation. And Bobby served the eight-game suspension. It was something that was thought a lot about as far as what the punishment would be, in collaboration with the league. They felt that this was the right punishment. He sat out his games and was able to stay active and practice with us. Now we’ll put him back on the floor. And we welcome him back.”

To this point, Portis and Mirotic have not spoken since the altercation, although Portis has reportedly attempted to reach out. Ultimately, it’s going to be very tricky for the Bulls to keep both players on their roster despite continued efforts to do exactly that.