BY: Justin Felisko (PBR Senior Writer/Editor)
LAS VEGAS – How high are the stakes for this weekend’s Last Cowboy Standing, presented by Ariat, at Helldorado Days?
Major you could say.
The third PBR Major of the 2018 season has arrived and with it comes the opportunity for riders to make one final splash in the world standings before the 25th PBR: Unleash The Beast takes its summer break.
While there will be multiple non-premier series events across the United States and the world this summer, none will compare to what a rider can accomplish inside the Thomas & Mack Center this weekend.
One rider can earn potentially 1,250 points toward the world standings at Last Cowboy Standing. The champion will earn a minimum of 625 world points and $100,000.
RELATED: Visit PBR.com for more information.
Each round winner earns 125 points toward the world standings, as well.
A rider needs to reach 8 seconds to advance to the next round.
Last Cowboy Standing is a minimum of two rounds and a maximum of five. At least 25 riders will advance to Round 2, with any draw spots being filled by the current world standings heading into Last Cowboy Standing if there are less than 25 rides in Round 1.
If all riders buck off in Rounds 2, 3 or 4, then all riders that attempted a bull advance to the next round.
If there is more than one ride in the final round (Round 5), then the Last Cowboy Standing will be the rider with the highest-ride score in Round 5. If there are no rides in Round 5, then the Last Cowboy Standing will be the rider with the most round points that had competed in Round 5.
The PBR Majors, which began in February 2015, have become a ticket into the World Championship race.
This weekend is the 14th PBR Major in PBR history. Entering this season, eight of the previous 11 Major winners finished no lower than 12th in the world standings.
Fans can watch Round 1 of Last Cowboy Standing beginning at 10:30 p.m. ET on CBS Sports Network
Current world No. 2 Ramon de Lima has spent seven weeks as the world No. 1 after winning Iron Cowboy in February.
However, even before Last Cowboy Standing was deemed a PBR Major, winning Last Cowboy Standing also propelled riders to a strong finish in the world title race.
Three of the five past Last Cowboy Standing champions finished in the Top 3 of the world standings – Kaique Pacheco (2016), Joao Ricardo Vieira(2015) and Silvano Alves (2013), while Alves also won the 2012 World Championship after winning his first Last Cowboy Standing title earlier that season.
2014 winner Guilherme Marchi finished seventh in the world standings after a right knee injury saw him lose the No. 1 spot in the world during the stretch run to the Finals.
Inaugural winner Luke Snyder finished 2011 12th in the world standings.
Here is a look at the previous champions of Last Cowboy Standing
Kaique Pacheco (2017 & 2016)
Perennial world title contender Kaique Pacheco comes into Las Vegas on the cusp of regaining the world No. 1 ranking. Pacheco has won Last Cowboy Standing for two consecutive years by going 5-for-6. Pacheco is 8-for-11 in four trips to Las Vegas for Last Cowboy Standing.
What a victory this weekend could potentially mean: Pacheco would surge to the No. 1 world ranking.
Joao Ricardo Vieira (2015)
Joao Ricardo Vieira won the two first PBR Majors in 2015, and his victory at Last Cowboy Standing had him in the driver’s seat for the World Championship. Vieira went into the 2015 summer break with a 1,002.5-point lead in the standings, but it wasn’t enough to hold off a red-hot J.B. Mauney in the final three months of the season.
What a victory this weekend could potentially mean: Vieira would move as high as potentially No. 6.
Guilherme Marchi (2014)
Guilherme Marchi won the 2014 Last Cowboy Standing to head into the 2014 summer break No. 1 in the world standings. Marchi had been the No. 1 rider for 11 of the last 12 weeks at the time of his victory. However, Marchi injured his PCL in his right knee during the victory and that injury would only worsen as the season went on.
The 2008 World Champion ultimately finished seventh in the world standings.
What a victory this weekend could potentially mean: Marchi could move as high as No. 4.
Silvano Alves (2013 & 2012)
Silvano Alves won the second Last Cowboy Standing event in Las Vegas (2013) a year after he won the Detroit LCS event.
The three-time World Champion is 11-for-23 (47.83 percent) at all Last Cowboy Standing formatted events, but it also is important to note Alves’ dominance inside the Thomas & Mack Center.
The 30-year-old won all three of his gold buckles and the 2015 World Finals event average inside the home of UNLV basketball. Alves is 27-for-36 at the Thomas & Mack Center.
What a victory could potentially mean: Alves could move to No. 6 in the world
Luke Snyder (2011)
Luke Snyder won the inaugural Last Cowboy Standing pay-per-view event in Las Vegas by going 3-for-3 with two 90-point rides. Snyder won the event with 90 points on Cooper Tires Wild & Out. Snyder won a whopping $217,500.
Repost by Jenna
The new MLS rivalry brewing between LAFC and LA Galaxy is going to be a can't-miss event in the upcoming seasons. After LAFC officially opened their stadium doors, the battle between the two teams has started on an intense note that hints at much more to come for MLS fans. LA Galaxy won their first matchup 4-3, but the level of play and aggression made fans excited for a heated rivalry in the games to come.
Los Angeles Football Club, or LAFC, is the new MLS team in Los Angeles. They shoulder up against the well-known LA Galaxy in the major West Coast city. LAFC's journey began in 2014 when the MLS awarded L.A. with a new team. The modern stadium began to come to fruition in in the heart of L.A., and LAFC's vision was born. In 2015, The 22,000-seat stadium plans were revealed. It is located next to the LA Memorial Coliseum in South L.A.
In January 2016, LAFC revealed the team's crest and colors to the public. The team's colors are black and gold. In mid-2016, the City of Los Angeles permitted the stadium construction. A team broke ground in August 2016, beginning what would soon come to be the Banc of California Stadium. In 2017, LAFC hired Bob Bradley as the Head Coach. Bradley is a two-time MLS Coach of the Year and a former U.S. Men's National Team coach. The rest of the team followed. In 2018, LAFC's stadium and first season opened.
Purchase LAFC tickets from Ticket Galaxy, the Official Ticket Distribution Partner of the Los Angeles Football Club.
LA Galaxy is coming from the opposite end of the MLS spectrum from the newbie LAFC franchise. LA Galaxy is one of ten founding MLS franchises that began their first season in 1996. The team plays at the StubHub Center in Carson, CA, a suburb of L.A. LA Galaxy was founded in 1994 before they began playing two years later. LA Galaxy carries an immense legacy with them in the MLS; they have won a record five MLS Cups and a myriad of other honors that grants them the supreme status in the league.The team's colors are white, blue, and yellow.
2017 was the first season in years that the team did not qualify for the MLS Cup. Earlier in the new millennium, LA Galaxy welcomed and celebrated David Beckham's era on the team. However, in recent years post-Beckham, LA Galaxy has rebuilt the dynasty with new faces. American Landon Donovan and more U.S. stars have begun to emerge after Beckham's retirement from the team. Donovan retired but came out of retirement in 2016 to aid his team in the playoffs. LA Galaxy's tradition of wins and superstar players will hopefully continue moving forward. The new rivalry with LAFC will spark more attention for the team, and it'll be exciting to see the season unfold.
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The 2018-2019 NFL schedule has been released. This announcement arrives a little over four months away from the season's kick-off. Pre-season will begin in August with the official start date in September. Ticket Galaxy is covering the major game highlights to look forward to this coming season.
Get a jump start on the season and purchase your NFL tickets today!
Top NFL Games to Watch For:
Atlanta Falcons vs. Philadelphia Eagles: Thursday, September 6th
The opening game of the 2018-2019 NFL Season holds the Atlanta Falcons against the Super Bowl LII Champions the Philadelphia Eagles. The game will be held at the Eagles' home stadium Lincoln Financial Field. The Eagles will open the season as reigning champions, and it will be exciting to see if they can hold up their success for another season. Carson Wentz got injured last season, and backup quarterback Nick Foles performed the impossible and carried his team to a Super Bowl victory. The Super Bowl has never been won by a backup quarterback, and the Eagles made history. With Wentz back at the helm, the Eagles will face the Falcons who lost to the Patriots in another iconic Super Bowl in 2017. The matchup will kick off the entire season and feature two Super-Bowl friendly teams to demonstrate the level of talent in the game this year.
Get your Atlanta Falcons vs. Philadelphia Eagles tickets.
New England Patriots vs. Jacksonville Jaguars: Sunday, September 16th
The New England Patriots, run by quarterback Tom Brady, are always a dominant force in the NFL year after year. Whether it's due to their solid base, extensively talented lineup, or smart coaching, the Patriots are never to be underestimated. The Jacksonville Jaguars were a force last season; their intense, aggressive playing style landed the Jags far into the NFL Playoffs. This will be a redo of the AFC Championship last season. The Pats stole the win to head onto the Super Bowl, but the Jags didn't bow out easily. It'll be exciting for fans to see a rematch early in the new season.
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Minnesota Vikings vs. Philadelphia Eagles: Sunday, October 7th
The Super Bowl Champions face a sturdy Minnesota Vikings team in early October. The Vikings are in for change this season, as Kirk Cousins will come in as the starting quarterback for his first full season on the Vikings. Cousins was the Redskins' quarterback for five years before moving to the Vikings for the 2018-2019 season. This will be a major transition for the team, as Cousins is replacing Case Keenum who moved from the Vikings to the Broncos. The new Vikings team vs. the Philadelphia Eagles will be a thrilling test partway into the season.
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Kansas City Chiefs vs. New England Patriots: Sunday, October 14th
The Kansas City Chiefs took all of Pats Nation by surprise early last season when they started the Pats' season off 0-1 due to the Chiefs offensive execution and lack of intimidation. Chiefs won 42-27 during the first week of the NFL season, and the New England Patriots remembered that they are not invincible especially with Edelman on the bench with an injury. The Chiefs went on to have an extremely successful season with Alex Smith as their quarterback, though the Chiefs traded Smith to the Redskins during the off-season. The rematch of an early shocker last NFL season will make for great rivalry tides and football at its most excellent.
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New England Patriots vs. Pittsburgh Steelers: Sunday, December 16th
A classic NFL matchup and rivalry: the New England Patriots vs. the Pittsburgh Steelers is always a guaranteed blood bath and fight to the finish. Around the same date last season, the Patriots won 27-24 against the Steelers in a close win that demonstrated the impressive status of both franchises. Both the Patriots and Steelers had 11-3 regular season records. The controversy during their last matchup also thjabarows fuel to the fire. Steelers tight end Jesse James seemed to have caught a game-winning touchdown that was overruled after further review, letting the Pats walk off with the win. This will only aid the Steelers who will come back with a point to prove and a chip on their shoulder.
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The MLB season is underway heading into the summer months where warm nights and Saturday afternoons are filled with America's greatest pastime. However, baseball games have a tradition beyond home runs and strikeouts. The experience of a MLB game includes venue history, team traditions, and most importantly, a ballpark's iconic food and drink options. Ticket Galaxy breaks down the top ballpark foodie cravings in America because with Major League Baseball, there are always Major League Eats:
Boston Red Sox: Fenway Park
The Fenway Frank is a prized food item sold at Boston Red Sox's Fenway Park. The oldest MLB stadium in America, Fenway holds a legacy in MLB nestled in the heart of Boston. The bars directly surrounding the ballpark hold enough good eats to keep fans full for seasons, but the food inside the stadium is not to be underestimated. A Fenway Frank is as simple and true as the park itself. The Fenway Frank went under a revamp in 2009, only being modified after careful taste testing. Unlike other ballpark's hot dogs, The Fenway Frank is both boiled AND slightly grilled. It's placed on a standard hot dog roll, and the toppings are up to the customer to decide from there.
Purchase Boston Red Sox tickets here.
Oakland A's: Oakland Coliseum
Kinder's Famous Ball Tip Sandwich
Oakland Coliseum holds a handful of delicious BBQ options for Oakland A's fans that attend the games. The close proximity of the Coliseum to Oracle Arena creates an unique sports atmosphere before fans even enter the ballpark. One famous sandwich in the midst is the Ball Tip Sandwich from Kinder's Meats. Kinder's Meats is a business that caters and sells BBQ food in addition to their rubs and sauces. The business has locations scattered throughout California and Nevada. They are located in the ballpark, and Kinder's Famous Ball Tip Sandwich can be sniffed out down the walkway during games.
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Atlanta Braves: SunTrust Park
Gu's Dumplings is a classic in Atlanta. Gu's Dumplings originally started as a full-fledged restaurant called Gu's Bistro on Buford Highway. Due to the distance from downtown Atlanta, the business moved to become Gu's Dumplings at Krog Street Market. Chef Gu and his wife are natives from Chengdu, Szechuan in southwestern China. The couple brought their Szechuan cuisine talents to Atlanta to become the first authentic Szechuan restaurant in downtown Atlanta. The cart at SunTrust Park includes some of the most popular items from the now-smaller Krog Street Market location. The cart also sells noodle bowls in addition to their boiled dumplings.
Purchase Atlanta Braves tickets here.
Washington Nationals: Nationals Park
Ben's Chili Bowl Half-Smoke Hot Dog
Ben's Chili Bowl franchise goes back to the '40s in the Washington D.C. area. Starting as a breakfast sausage, the famous Half Smoke meat developed into a hot dog with the addition of a bun, mustard, onions, and spicy homemade chili sauce. Ben's Chili Bowl Half-Smoke Hot Dog was born. The Nationals Park includes a Ben's Chili Bowl where fans can get a taste of one of D.C.'s beloved franchises. Chili sauce is just one of many options on the menu; turkey dogs and veggie dogs are also options. The franchise is so famous that the staff has built up a photo gallery of celebrities who have stopped by to eat over the years. Highlights include George W. Bush, Kevin Durant, Bruno Mars, and many more. Indulge in one of the capital's beloved eats while watching the Nationals play ball.
Purchase Washington Nationals tickets here.
New York Yankees: Yankee Stadium
Lobel's Steak Sandwich
The Yankees are undoubtedly one of the most famous MLB teams in the league. After their new and expensive Yankee Stadium opened, the food options grew, as well. Lobel's of New York has Carving Stations at Yankee Stadium that offer Lobel's USDA Prime Steak Sandwich. Feeling like eating like a ballpark king? The Steak Sandwich is your answer. Lobel's features world-class butchers that began as an online family butcher shop. Yankee Stadium is the ONLY location that one can eat a Lobel's Steak Sandwich, making it a special addition to the new stadium. Though Yankee Stadium is notoriously expensive, this rare food option will be worth it.
Purchase New York Yankees tickets here.
San Francisco Giants: AT&T Park
Crazy Crab'z Dungeness Crab Sandwich
With a location so close to the water, it only makes sense that the San Francisco Giants would put seafood on the top of their tasty options at AT&T Park. Crazy Crab'z does it all: calamari, chowder, shrimp, and of course, their signature Dungeness Crab Sandwich. Stuffed between two San Francisco sourdough bread slices with tomato, the Dungeness crab stands out between the few simple ingredients. It's tasty and unique to the location of the stadium near the coast. Next time you head to a Giants game, remember to indulge in the best that San Francisco's coastline has to offer.
Purchase San Francisco Giants tickets here.
Pittsburgh Pirates: PNC Park
Primanti Brothers Pitts-burger
Primanti Brothers have been located in Pittsburgh since the 1930s. Since then, it's expanded into a franchise with a location at Pittsburgh Pirates' PNC Park. The Primanti Brothers sandwich, known for the fries on the sandwich itself, became a signature item for the franchise. At the stadium, there is another signature worth mentioning. The Primanti Brothers' Pitts-burger contains a beef patty, tomatoes, lettuce, french fries, and coleslaw on white bread. The unique creation combines the french-fries-on-the-sandwich Primanti Brothers' signature with a burger to create a mouth-watering Pittsburgh tradition. The famous Pittsburgh franchise is located at PNC Park, so enjoy the tradition will watching your next Pirates game!
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BY: Justin Felisko (PBR Senior Writer/Editor)
PUEBLO, Colo. – The secret is out of the bag with the PBR Majors now in their fourth season of existence.
Win New York, Iron Cowboy, Last Cowboy Standing or the Music City Knockout and you can assure yourself a much better chance of being in the world title conversation come season’s end once the 25th PBR World Finals: Unleash The Beast in Las Vegas (Nov. 7-11).
This Saturday’s WinStar World Casino & Resort Invitational, powered by Kawasaki, is the 13th PBR Major in PBR history. One rider can walk away with a minimum of 625 world points to as many as 1,250 points if he wins every round and the event goes a full five rounds.
RELATED: Visit PBR.com for more information
The winner of a PBR Major earns on average 842.29 points toward the world standings.
That large chunk of points has helped the previous eight winners of the 11 PBR Majors, not including this year’s season-opener victory for Gage Gay, all finish 12th or better in the world standings.
Two PBR Major winners – 2017 World Champion Jess Lockwood and 2016 PBR World Champion Cooper Davis – won PBR Majors during their championship seasons, while Kaique Pacheco, Eduardo Aparecido and Joao Ricardo Vieira all finished in the Top 5 of the world standings.
The only three riders not to finish in the Top 5 were Fabiano Vieira (10th in 2017), Shane Proctor (11th in 2016) and Paulo Lima (12th in 2015).
Essentially, barring a massive slump (i.e. Proctor and Lima) or injuries (i.e. Fabiano Vieira and Gay this year), a PBR Major victory guarantees a rider a seat at the World Championship dinner table come the PBR World Finals.
Reigning PBR World Champion Jess Lockwood said that winning a PBR Major isn’t essential to winning a world title, but that it obviously helps.
Lockwood brought up how Derek Kolbaba (five events wins) and Cooper Davis (11 round wins) were the front runners last year heading into the World Finals despite lacking a PBR Major on their resumes.
In 2015, J.B. Mauney was able to clinch the world title before the Finals was even over, and he didn’t win a PBR Major.
“I don’t think it is a necessity, just look at Derek and Coop last year being the front runners for the world title. And look at J.B. too,” Lockwood said.
Davis added, “Winning a Major is important, but not necessarily a necessity. I think round wins are just as important as a single Major win.”
The 2018 World Championship conversation will certainly revolve around stats such as event wins, round victories, qualified rides, riding percentage and conversions aboard the rankest bulls in 15/15 Bucking Battles and championship rounds, but the PBR Majors offer a clear-cut path to a ticket to the World Championship conversation.
Nine-time World Champion Ty Murray will be joining Craig Hummer and two-time World Champion Justin McBride in the broadcast booth in Arlington. Fans can watch Rounds 1 & 2 on CBS Sports Network at 10:30 p.m. ET on Saturday night. They then can watch the finale of Iron Cowboy Sunday at noon ET on CBS national television.
Murray compares the PBR Majors to that of a playoff game for the riders.
“If you are going to be a World Champion, you have to step up to the mental challenges,” Murray said. “That is the element for me that the Majors bring to the sport of bull riding. Physically, you can argue it is basically the same and you have to ride your bulls. That is the name of the game since it was invented to now. Adding in that element of more points, the pressure of what it can do for a world title race or getting you in the hunt. That is the step-up of a mental challenge of this sport.
“That is what I like about the four majors. When you are able to step up and excel at a place that mentally can be harder to excel at, you get rewarded for it.”
Lockwood and Davis wouldn’t be World Champions if not for their PBR Major victories the last two seasons, but it also can be said that PBR Major championships for the other six bull riders did not equate to a gold buckle.
There are no guarantees in bull riding.
Eduardo Aparecido held the No. 1 world ranking for six months last year after overtaking Lockwood for the lead when he earned a PBR Major-record 955 points at Iron Cowboy.
“It is very good because it gives you a lot of points,” Aparecido said. “The new design with the points, if you win a Major it is like you win two or three events.”
Pacheco has the most PBR Major victories (3) and has won a PBR Major every year of his career, but he has yet to place a gold buckle on his waist.
It is no coincidence that he has two runner-up finishes and a No. 5 ranking last year courtesy of two Last Cowboy Standing titles and a Music City Knockout crown.
“These are very important events because there are more points,” Pacheco said. “A lot more points and money. That helps a lot for the world title. All of the events are important, but Majors are more important.”
Iron Cowboy is a single-elimination “ride or go home” format with riders advancing to the next round by making a qualified ride. Iron Cowboy is a minimum of two rounds and a maximum of five.
It has been the same format as Last Cowboy Standing since 2015, and Pacheco called it one of the most grueling events on the PBR schedule.
“Yes they are harder because you need to ride more bulls in just one day,” Pacheco said. “Five bulls.”
Joao Ricardo Vieira couldn’t hold off J.B. Mauney in 2015 despite winning Iron Cowboy and Last Cowboy Standing. The 2013 Rookie of the Year went on to finish third in the world standings.
Despite coming up short of a gold buckle, the trios PBR Majors put them on the putting green of a championship.
However, none of them converted on the 18th hole at the PBR World Finals like Lockwood and Davis.
“Best way to get the gold is to step up when it matters most and consistency,” Lockwood concluded.
Below is the world point structure for Iron Cowboy
Round Points Event Points
1st – 125 1st - 625
2nd – 75 2nd - 100
3rd – 60 3rd - 75
4th – 50 4th - 50
5th – 40 5th – 25
6th – 20 6th - 15
7th – 10 7th - 10
8th - 5
9th - 5
10th – 5
11th – 5
12th – 5
13th – 5
* If the event ends with only one rider making a qualified ride in the final round, regardless of when that round occurs after the first round, then that rider is the Last Cowboy Standing and receives 625 points for the event win. No other riders are awarded event points.
This year's National Lacrosse League (NLL) is heating up, as the regular season wraps up only a few months away in late April. The NLL is a men's professional indoor lacrosse league that was founded in 1986. With almost ten teams active, the NLL represents the best that North America has to offer in the sport. Every season, the teams play for the Champion's Cup. The playoffs then begin, as top divisional teams compete for the change to face off for the Champion's Cup. So far this year, a handful of teams have made their presence known. Ticket Galaxy break down this year's top contenders midway through the season.
The Georgia Swarm is a NLL team based in Georgia. They play their home games at Infinite Energy Arena in Duluth, Georgia and share the venue with the Atlanta Gladiators, a ECHL ice hockey team based in Duluth, as well. During Swarm games, a series of entertainment is available for fans, including concerts such as the Scott McCrery show coming up on February 17th. The Swarm's record is 3-3 this season, putting them as 4th in the Eastern Division.
New England Black Wolves
The New England Black Wolves are 4-2 in the Eastern Division so far this season. The New England Black Wolves play their home games at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. They are currently leading the Eastern Division, making them a major contender for the Champion's Cup. This includes winning streaks this season that are hard to beat so early on. They are currently the team to watch for in the NLL Eastern Division.
The Calgary Roughnecks were founded in 2002 and are located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Though they are currently 2-5 in the Western Division, their fight and history make them potential underdogs in the upcoming playoffs. It's too early in the season to tell which team will end on top of the division, but the Roughnecks are a team to watch that has began the season quieter than normal. In the past, the Roughnecks won two Champion's Cups in 2004 and 2009. The team plays their home games at the Scotiabank Saddledome.
In the Western Division, the Saskatchewan Rush are the team to look out for. With a stunning record of 7-1, Saskatchewan Rush are from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. The team was founded recently in 2015 and already has a successful record on the team's side. They play home games at Co-Op Field at SasktTel Centre. In 2016, the team won the Champion's Cup. Therefore, for such a new and young franchise, Saskatchewan Rush has made a big impact on the NLL.
Written by Jenna
Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Defending Super Bowl LI Winner the New England Patriots
The Jacksonville Jaguars are taking on the New England Patriots for the AFC Championship Game. After surging back to beat the Atlanta Falcons during Super Bowl LI, the Patriots once again proved their superstar status. Quarterback and arguable G.O.A.T. Tom Brady leads a developed team well-rehearsed in the art of winning and winning often. The Patriots' success is almost mocked in the NFL due to its consistency and enormity throughout the past decades. Aside from Brady, notable franchise players such as Rob Gronkowski and Danny Amendola help hold up a strong offensive line. The Patriots have won four Super Bowls since the new millennium including Super Bowl XXXVI, XXXVIII, XXXIX, XLIX, and LI. The passionate New England fan base and talented roster make for a deadly Super Bowl contender team year after year.
The Jaguars, on the other hand, bring a different story to the AFC Championship game. The Jaguars, 10-4 for the season, are headed into this game with a little different of a mentality than the well-established Patriots. The team has won neither a conference championship or Super Bowl throughout its history. In fact, it's almost become a running joke about their lack of titles to match up with any skill on the field. This season showed a voracious, exciting Jaguars squad. After beating the Steelers in thrilling fashion to get to the AFC Championship, this might be a different ending for the Jags. The Jaguars' defense is what is truly carrying this team. Their defense is second in yards allowed, points allowed, sacks, and passing yards allowed. Therefore, the Jags are hungry to show that the Patriots' legacy is not enough to swipe away their chances at a Super Bowl spot.
Minnesota Vikings vs. Philadelphia Eagles
The Minnesota Vikings are set to play the Philadelphia Eagles for the NFC Championship Game. Both teams are comeback stories in a one way or another. The Eagles have not participated in a conference championship game since winning the NFC Championship in 2004. With many NFC East titles under their belt, the team has still not managed to find themselves back in Super Bowl territory. As far as Super Bowl wins, the Eagles have not wrangled a Super Bowl win since 1960. In addition, the Eagles are fighting against the loss of their starting quarterback Carson Wentz, now replaced with Nick Foles. Foles has carried the team during their time of need, and fans can only hope he can maintain control during these important games. The Eagles are also fortunate to play the NFC Championship game at home, so home advantage is on their side. Lastly, the Eagles have held an excellent defensive season that make them a prime candidate for this battle.
However, the Vikings have also held a tight, successful defensive line during this season. Quarterback Case Keenum has led the offense to a surprising and thrilling season of success. The Vikings are playing in the NFC Championship for the first time since 2009 and are entering the vital games with an 11-1 record during the last twelve games of the season. The team has not won a championship since before the AFL-NFL merger in 1969, similar to the Eagles. Their last conference championship was also years prior in 1976. Therefore, the team is hungry for a major success mark this season. The Vikings pulled off a tremendous win over the Saints to make it to the NFC Championship game. Winning 29-24 in a last-minute finish, the Vikings proved that they are not a team to sleep on.
Written by Jenna
Last evening (July 12th, 2017) marked the highly anticipated ESPY Awards- a high class event that was designed to recognize top-performing athletes, and affiliates of various sporting organizations. This year marked the 25th annual ceremony, and it was hosted in Los Angeles, California.
Narrated by former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning, this event was full of honorable, tear-jerking stories, accompanied by good humor to lighten the mood. Manning poked fun at several different athletes (although Kevin Durant wasn’t a fan) before rolling out the actual awards.
Aside from recognizing top performing players, the Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Award show also accredits noble individuals who have made a difference within the sports community. This year there were several heart-warming awards given to extremely deserving individuals including:
For a complete list of winners click here!
Written by Tara
The NBA began a new tradition yesterday by launching their first annual award show in New York City. This lavish event boasted some of the biggest names in mens basketball, and rewarded them for their major accomplishments on, and off the court.
Typically the NBA holds a small ceremony upon the conclusion of the regular season during the NBA Playoffs to grant these annual awards. However, this year the NBA chose to honor their valued players by setting up an actual award show which was hosted by rapper, Drake.
In front of a large, supportive crowd the following awards were granted to deserving members of the NBA:
The NBA granted fans the opportunity to weigh in on who they believed should win each award. Their website hosted a contest beginning in April which allowed fans to cast their votes. Seeing as this will be an annual event, be sure to check back next year, to nominate your favorite NBA player as a winner!
Written by Tara
Tim Tebow is making headlines as a minor league baseball player as he continues to hit well for the New York Met’s A affiliate, the Columbia Fireflies. As of last week he was 40 for 178 with 18 RBIs.
As we all know Tim Tebow did not start off with Major League Baseball dreams. In 2011, the Heisman Trophy winner led the Denver Broncos to their first AFC West title since 2005. However, even after a successful season he was traded to the NY Jets (and then released), signed with the New England Patriots (and cut) and he stepped away for a few seasons to only try again with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2015. Never getting back to his “Tebow Time” ways of 2011, Tebow switched gears and surprised many when he signed with the New York Mets on a minor league contract in 2016.
Tim Tebow is not the only athlete to switch professional leagues, and no we aren’t talking about that time Michael Jordan tried playing for the Chicago White Sox. We are talking about athletes who successfully transferred to a new league or crazily enough, played in two professional leagues at the same time!
Brian Jordan, from 1989 to 1991, Jordan played in the NFL and earned a spot on the roster for the Pro-Bowl as an Atlanta Falcon. After that? In 1992 he moved over to the MLB where he played 15 seasons. In 1999 he was voted into the MLB All-Star game as an Atlanta Brave.
Bo Jackson, like Tebow, he won the Heisman Trophy. Jackson was originally drafted to the NFL only to play professional baseball (first) instead. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers who initially drafted Jackson would go on to trade him to the Los Angeles Raiders in 1987. In 1987, Jackson had 396 at bats with 22 home runs, 53 RBIs and an on base percentage of .296 with the Kansas City Royals and he played in 7 games for the Los Angeles Raiders, rushing for 554 yards with 6 touch downs. He would continue to play for the Raiders for three more seasons before leaving the NFL and stayed in the MLB until 1994.
Deion Sanders, he once played a professional baseball game (where he hit a home run) and a professional football game (where he scored a touchdown) all in the same weekend! He would later attempt to play in both leagues on the same day, after playing with the Falcons in Miami Sanders went to Pittsburgh for Game 5 of the NLCS however, after he arrived he sat on the bench. He is also the only person to have rings from both the World Series and the Super Bowl.
Gene Conley, was a pitcher in the MLB for 11 seasons and concurrently played in the NBA for six. He is the only person to have a World Series ring and a NBA Championship ring.
While the number of athletes who have successfully played in multiple professional leagues may be few it does not mean that Tim Tebow cannot succeed as an outfielder after an attempt at a career as a quarterback. Only time will tell if Tebow will get to put on the orange and blue jersey in Queens but if and when he does, he could become part of an elite group of athletes in sports history.
Written by Kristen
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