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Will Leitch

Brewers Aim To Break Into Playoffs

The Milwaukee Brewers came close to a playoff bid last year, but they're flying under the radar entering the 2018 season. Are they due for regression or are they poised to make a leap into the postseason? Let's look at the arguments for both. More»
Ross Tucker

Eagles, Pats Fight Through Adversity

Often it is the teams and players that handle adversity the best that end up having the most success. Nowhere is that more evident than when you look at the two participants in the Super Bowl, the Eagles and Patriots, albeit in different ways. More»
Barry M. Bloom

Kings Turn Their Focus Forward

Their six-game losing streak by the boards, the Los Angeles Kings are hoping that the good feelings generated by Sunday night's 4-2 victory over the Rangers at Staples Center carry over to the road games they play this week and beyond. More»
NBA News

Kidd Out After Bucks' Recent Slide

The Milwaukee Bucks fired coach Jason Kidd on Monday amid a midseason slide that has left the playoff hopeful in eighth place in the Eastern Conference. It was a surprising end to Kidd's three-plus season tenure in Milwaukee, when the Bucks made the playoffs twice More»
Mike Lupica

Who's the G.O.A.T.: Brady or Jordan?

The debate about the greatest of all time in sports is complicated with many possible answers, but as the run-up to another Super Bowl is just beginning, here's a good question to ask: If it's just Tom Brady and Michael Jordan, who's your pick? More»
Michael Tunison

AFR: What Will It Take To Oust Pats?

The Patriots make erasing big postseason deficits look easy, and they did so again on Sunday to beat the Jaguars 24-20 in the AFC championship game. What will it take to take them down on the sport's biggest stage in the Super Bowl? More»
NFC Championship Game

Eagles Soar Past Vikings For NFC Title

Led by QB Nick Foles, the Philadelphia Eagles made big play after big play on both sides of the ball in a 38-7 rout of the Minnesota Vikings for the NFC championship. Next up after their most-lopsided playoff victory: the Eagles' first Super Bowl trip since 2005 More»
AFC Championship Game

Patriots Rally Past Jags To Another Super Bowl

Tom Brady shook off a hand injury and threw a four-yard touchdown pass to Danny Amendola with 2:48 remaining, rallying the New England Patriots back to the Super Bowl with a 24-20 comeback victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday. More»
Cliff Corcoran

Best Franchise Player Second Acts

Evan Longoria and Andrew McCutchen are joining the Giants after long runs as the faces of the franchise in Tampa and Pittsburgh, respectively. Now, they'll hope to join the list of best second acts of franchise players in MLB history. More»
Anthony Castrovince

The All-Would Be Free Agents Team

We're seeing an abnormally slow Hot Stove market in Major League Baseball this offseason, partly because you could build a squad of star players who would have been free agents this winter, had they not inked extensions earlier. More»
Mike Lupica

Spring Training Beginning To Stir

There was snow on this day from the Florida Panhandle all the way to Maine, just not here, where the ballpark got a day closer to baseball. This was The Ballpark of the Palm Beaches, which the Astros and Nationals now call their Florida home. More»
Cy Brown

Liverpool Is Back And Here To Stay

With a 4-3 victory over previously unbeaten Manchester City over the weekend, Liverpool reestablished itself as a force to be reckoned with in the English Premier League. The talented core assembled by Jurgen Klopp could make the Reds formidable for years to come. More»
Alex Wong

The Best NBA All-Star Game Picks

On Thursday, the NBA will announce its 2018 All-Star game starters. Here are our choices for the East and West All-Star starters and reserves, where we're ignoring popularity and positions and simply looking at who is most deserving of being there and why. More»
Will Leitch

Where Pujols' Legacy Stands Now

Albert Pujols turned 38 on Tuesday, and he enters 2018 with the Angels coming off the first season in his career in which he was a below-average hitter. Pujols is already an obvious Hall of Famer, but what will the last years of his career look like? More»
Terence Moore

Spurs Lurking As Top Contenders

More than a few folks are ignoring the San Antonio Spurs when projecting ahead to the NBA Finals, and people are doing so because of all of those flashier teams in the spotlight. But, as always, the Spurs are lying in wait, ready to make a run. More»
Matt Brown

Draft Deadline: 10 College Takeaways

The deadline for underclassmen to leave college early for the 2018 NFL Draft passed on Monday. As always, it's a key date for shaping the draft class, but it's also important for preseason college football analysis. Here are 10 takeaways to know. More»
Ross Tucker

Marcus Williams Is Not Alone

My heart still hurts for Marcus Williams, the Saints' safety who ducked and whiffed on Stefon Diggs' winning touchdown catch last Sunday. I've been thinking about Williams since then, because I had my own "Marcus Williams moment," albeit on a much smaller scale. More»
Cliff Corcoran

Best Starting Rotations of the 2000s

The Astros' rotation projects to be the best in baseball in 2018. How those starters will stack up against the best rotations of this century remains to be seen, but one question we can answer now is which rotations set the standard. More»
Will Leitch

McCutchen Trade Tough But Necessary

It always hurts to lose a franchise icon, and Pittsburgh Pirates fans may be understandably sad after the franchise traded Andrew McCutchen to the Giants on Monday. But these trades sometimes work out better than you might think. More»
Matt Brown

What's Next For Alabama, Georgia

After Alabama's dramatic victory over Georgia for the 2017 national championship, both teams will enter 2018 with high hopes, again. With underclassmen making their NFL decisions, let's take an early look at what to expect from the Crimson Tide and Bulldogs. More»
Mike Lupica

A Baseball Friendship To Celebrate

There have been a lot of great baseball friendships to know, none more so than Tim McCarver, the white Catholic catcher from the south, and Bob Gibson, the great African-American pitcher out of Omaha, a bond that has proudly stood the test of time. More»
Will Leitch

Pirates Move Forward Into New Era

The Pirates traded pitcher Gerrit Cole to the Astros over the weekend, a move that seems to signal a changing of the guard in Pittsburgh after the team experienced a long-awaited breakthrough into the postseason in 2013. More»
Michael Tunison

AFR: Who Will Challenge Brady?

To hear casual NFL fans describe it, the Super Bowl has already been decided now that the four remaining starting quarterbacks are Tom Brady, Nick Foles, Case Keenum and Blake Bortles after a riveting round of divisional playoff games. More»
Jason B. Hirschhorn

Vikings Get Their Own Playoff Miracle

Playoff heartbreak has long defined the Minnesota Vikings, but that wasn't the case on Sunday. After blowing a 17-point lead to the Saints, the Vikings bounced back to win thanks to an improbable 61-yard Stefon Diggs touchdown on the final play. More»
Anthony Castrovince

Top 5 Starting Rotations For 2018

Gerrit Cole joined the Astros over the weekend, and it prompted the better part of the baseball world to say that Houston is now in possession of the best rotation in baseball. Is it true? Let's dive into the numbers to identify the top five. More»
Alex Wong

Heat Building Toward Playoff Run

Without a path to finding even one superstar to build around, the Miami Heat entered last season with question marks up and down their roster. But they turned a rough start into a phenomenal finish, and now they've become a player in the East this season. More»
Cliff Corcoran

The Chase For Yu Darvish

The pursuit of coveted free-agent starting pitcher Yu Darvish has been narrowed to a handful of teams. Here's what can be expected from Darvish in 2018 and how he might fit with each of his six reported possible landing spots. More»
Mike Lupica

Heat Wave: Spoelstra Sparks Miami

Sometimes great stories in sports are right in front of us, hiding in plain sight. It is that way right now with the Miami Heat, a really great story in the NBA, and Erik Spoelstra, who is a great coach, leading his team to 54 wins in their past 82 games. More»
Manny Randhawa

A Bigger Hall of Fame Is Better

The debate over just how exclusive the National Baseball Hall of Fame should be is as old as the institution itself. Given current trends, the percentage of those enshrined could increase with players like Mike Mussina. That's a good thing. More»
Will Leitch

CFB Tortured Fan Base Rankings 2018

There is no more torturous way to lose a football game, particularly in your dream season, than what Georgia just did on Monday night in the national title game against Alabama. That brings us to the third-annual top 25 Tortured College Football Fan Base Rankings. More»
Anthony Castrovince

Internal Improvements For MLB Teams

Teams don't need to solely rely on the Hot Stove in the offseason because top prospects and rebounding players can foster improvement, too. Here are five examples of teams that might see significant improvement in certain areas. More»
Matt Brown

Greatest College Football Dynasties

The Alabama dynasty will not end. On Monday, the Crimson Tide overcame a 13-point deficit to beat Georgia for their fifth national title in the past nine seasons under Nick Saban. It's the best run of success in college football history. More»
Alex Wong

The Best of the NBA's First Half

We're about halfway through the regular season schedule for the 2017-18 NBA season, which means now is a perfect time to look at the contenders for individual awards and hand out our midseason selections, from MVP to Coach of the Year. More»
Will Leitch

Home Runs for Hire on Hot Stove

Three of the top 10 home run hitters from last season are still available, but this isn't as rare in baseball as you might think. And if recent history has taught us anything, it's that hitting a lot of homers doesn't necessarily guarantee a huge contract. More»

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