Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Wings and Things

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The Detroit Red Wings got goals from Henrik Zetterberg, Brad Stuart and Jiri Hudler and 20 saves from Joey MacDonald as they defeated the Dallas Stars 3-1 last night for their NHL record 21st straight home victory. The previous record of 20 had been reached on two occasions, first by the Boston Bruins during the 1929-1930 season and then more recently by the Philadelphia Flyers in 1976. Detroit will try to make it 22 in a row on Friday when they take on the Nashville Predators. The Red Wings are currently in 1st place in the Western Conference and lead the NHL with 80 points. Here's a look at how Detroit's streak compares with the longest home winning streaks in some of the other major sports:

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Now I know yesterday I blogged about my feelings towards people calling Jeremy Lin the best point guard in the NBA, but if he keeps doing the kinds of things he did last night in Toronto I may eventually have to eat my words. The Knicks overcame a 12 point 4th quarter deficit and knocked off the Raptors 90-87 thanks to a last second 3-pointer by the Linderella Story himself. Lin finished with 27 points and 11 assists including 12 in the decisive 4th quarter. He's now scored 136 points in his first 5 starts, more than any other player since the merger. Here's a look at the list of the top 5, you may have heard of some of them:

Still, his game isn't without flaws. With 8 turnovers last night, he now has 30 in his first 5 starts which is also the most since the merger. He also missed 4 free throws in the 4th quarter. But hey, a win is a win is a win and the Knicks are now 6-0 since Lin starting getting increased playing time. Up next for the Lincredibles is a return to Madison Square Garden where they'll host the Sacramento Kings tonight.

Jeremy Lin quote of the night: "Chuck Norris may wear Tebow pajamas but I'm pretty sure he has a Jeremy Lin night light to scare the boogeyman away. Wow! What a run!!!" -- Miami Heat forward Shane Battier

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Just days after their stunning loss to Osasuna, Barcelona received a scare from German side Bayer Leverkusen in the first leg of their Champions League tilt yesterday. After taking an early 1-0 lead on a goal by Chilean striker Alexis Sánchez, Leverkusen equalized early in the second half when Michal Kadlec headed in a cross from Vedran Corluka. Barcelona bounced right back though as Sánchez again beat 19 year old keeper Bernd Leno and then Lionel Messi removed any doubt of the final result late in the match when he worked a lovely combination with Dani Alves giving Barcelona a 3-1 win on the road.

France's Lyon won the day's other matchup defeating APOEL Nicosia by a score of 1-0 thanks to a goal from 20 year old Alexandre Lacazette. APOEL, the first team from Cyprus ever to reach the Champions League Round of 16, were content to sit back and defend the entire match as they produced just one shot the whole game, and that came in the 88th minute.
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Two more matches today as Zenit St. Petersburg hosts Benfica and Arsenal travels to Italy to take on AC Milan.

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The Oakland A's were the surprise winners in the Yoenis Cespedes sweepstakes signing the Cuban outfielder to a 4 year deal worth $36M. Cespedes, 26, was Cuba's starting centerfielder in the 2009 World Baseball Classic where he hit .458 in 6 games and is coming off a season in Cuba in which he batted .333 with 33 homers in just 90 games. The A's, who finished 74-88 last season, are also reportedly entertaining the possibility of bringing in Manny Ramirez.

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