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NFL Draft 2024 ‘The Beast’ Guide: Dane Brugler’s scouting reports and player rankings
Sports

NFL Draft 2024 ‘The Beast’ Guide: Dane Brugler’s scouting reports and player rankings

Connected media - Associated media Finally! It’s here. I’m thrilled to share this year’s draft guide with everyone. I don’t remember who first referred to it as “The Beast,” but I use that moniker as motivation to make sure this annual primer lives up to the nickname — and I don’t think I’ve let you down this year. Every NFL prospect is a puzzle. And it is a scout’s job to find the puzzle pieces to create as clear a picture of each player as possible. Those puzzle pieces include everything from the player’s physical traits to his mental makeup to the details of his upbringing — and everything in between. That’s precisely how I attack this draft guide. Over the last 18 months, I’ve collected as many puzzle pieces as I could dig up, through countless hours of tape study and c...
NBA Pre-Postseason Player Tiers 1 and 2: Wembanyama quickly rising; Giannis, Jokić steady at top
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NBA Pre-Postseason Player Tiers 1 and 2: Wembanyama quickly rising; Giannis, Jokić steady at top

Linked media - Linked media Yesterday, I largely focused on setting the table for the updated NBA Pre-Postseason Players Tiers before revealing Tier 3 (players between the 24th and 42nd spot) and Tier 4 (Nos. 43-80). Today, I’m going to get a little more into some of the more interesting and/or challenging placements, as well as note a few overall trends. For starters, a consistent bit of feedback — and one I’ve gotten from multiple sources since the release of Tiers 3 and 4 — is the always difficult evaluation of which player is more valuable between an elite role player and a good-but-not-great primary or secondary creator. A senior analytics staffer within the league went so far as to argue they would prefer essentially the entirety of Tier 4A, largely made up of elite role player...
U.S. Soccer took a gamble waiting for Emma Hayes, leaving USWNT’s style of play in limbo
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U.S. Soccer took a gamble waiting for Emma Hayes, leaving USWNT’s style of play in limbo

Associated media - Related media In November, U.S. Soccer gambled that it was worth sacrificing a year of continuous preparation under a permanent manager to hire Emma Hayes. For eight months following the 2023 World Cup, interim management has overseen the U.S. women’s national team. To her credit, Twila Kilgore’s tenure as placeholder helped turn over the player pool and saw her team win a pair of tune-up competitions this spring. Still, it’s been a lost year for the program at a time when it was in sore need of a clear new vision. Hayes’ first games as USWNT manager in June are still two months away, bringing the post-World Cup interlude to 10 months — and a full seven months from her appointment in November. With the CONCACAF W Gold Cup and SheBelieves Cup in the rearview, it’s t...
Ryan Giggs and football: A very complicated relationship
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Ryan Giggs and football: A very complicated relationship

Connected media - Associated media The celebration was almost as glorious as the goal itself. The fuzz of chest hair, the twirling shirt, the body swerve to evade the Manchester United fans who had run on the pitch in their euphoria. On Sunday, it is 25 years since Patrick Vieira, a genuine great of Arsenal’s midfield, played a wayward pass amid the high drama of an FA Cup semi-final between the leading two English sides of the time. Ryan Giggs took the ball and then he was off and running, picking up speed from inside his own half, slaloming past opponents, one by one. Vieira tried to get back but Giggs, crossing the halfway line, dipped his shoulder to get away. Lee Dixon was next to come across. He, too, could not get near him. Arsenal had the most famously parsimonious defence in...
Pat Zachry, Pitcher Known for a Lopsided Trade, Dies at 71
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Pat Zachry, Pitcher Known for a Lopsided Trade, Dies at 71

Connected media - Linked media Pat Zachry, who was a co-winner of the National League Rookie of the Year award in 1976, but who is probably best known for being one of the players traded to the New York Mets a year later for Tom Seaver, died on Thursday at the home of his son, Josh, in Austin, Texas. He was 71. Jay Horwitz, a spokesman for the Mets, announced the death. He did not specify the cause, saying only that Zachry died after a long illness. Zachry, a 6-foot-5 right-hander, began his career with the Reds in 1976 and got off to a promising start. He went 14-7 with a 2.74 earned run average in his first season and tied the San Diego Padres pitcher Butch Metzger for Rookie of the Year. He beat the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 2 of the National League Championship Series and th...
A Former Hockey Enforcer Searches for Answers on C.T.E. Before It’s Too Late
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A Former Hockey Enforcer Searches for Answers on C.T.E. Before It’s Too Late

Connected media - Related media Memory, Now and Five Years Ago Chris Nilan is a quintessential Bostonian of a certain time and demographic, the kind they make movies about: A tough, working-class hockey player of Irish descent, hundreds, if not thousands, of local kids yearned to be just like him. He was born on Feb. 9, 1958, at the Faulkner Hospital in West Roxbury, Mass., the son of Henry and Leslie Nilan, a hard-working, blue collar couple who raised their four children in a strict household. Chris still found his way into scraps as a kid, and soon discovered he was a capable and fearless fighter. Often, he said, it was in defense of others. Later, he mixed it up with groups of kids and young adults on the streets and in the bars of Boston. He met Karen Stanley at Northeastern Uni...
On Klay Thompson as a sixth man, boost from a living (Larry) legend and uncertain Warriors future
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On Klay Thompson as a sixth man, boost from a living (Larry) legend and uncertain Warriors future

Linked media - Related media SAN FRANCISCO — The motivational message, courtesy of the great Larry Bird, came at the perfect time. Klay Thompson was just a few days removed from the unwelcome start of his sixth-man life in Utah, where the 34-year-old Warriors legend had been asked to come off the bench after the previous 12 years as a starter. Even with Thompson’s spectacular debut in this new reserve role, a 35-point showing on Feb. 15 that helped lift Golden State over the Jazz heading into the All-Star break, this was the kind of career-changing decision that would take much more time to truly accept. The emotions were still raw. This was already a sensitive situation too, what with Thompson and the Warriors having been unable to come to terms on an extension in recent months and ...
Some Things Are More Important Than History
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Some Things Are More Important Than History

Linked media - Connected media He didn’t care that it was a no-hitter. He just wanted the Yankees to win. More than five hours after we arrived at Yankee Stadium, my 9-year-old son, Wes, had waited in line for an hour in a rainstorm, collected his coveted (replica) 1998 Yankees World Series ring, talked me into buying him a T-shirt, visited the Gluten Free Grill twice, mourned the season-ending injury to Jasson Domínguez, cheered Aaron Judge so loudly that his voice was getting hoarse and brushed off every single mention I made that Corbin Burnes, the starter for the Milwaukee Brewers, was throwing an incredible game. While the rain delayed Sunday’s game between Milwaukee and the Yankees only 15 minutes, the soggy conditions persisted through the early innings and Burnes, the winner ...