UFC: Mike Perry Trains With Yoel Romero After Dropping Coaches

UFC star Mike Perry is rather unconventional. He’s no stranger to controversy outside the Octagon, he has a ‘knockout or be knocked out’ fighting style, and he’s become famous for having his girlfriend in his corner at his fights. He also currently doesn’t belong to any team, believing he can do better on his own than under a head coach.

That’s raised some questions, of course, about how Perry intends to handle fight camps going forward. Most fighters hold camp with their teammates and the coaches at their gym, but in the current era of the sport, fighters are more connected than ever and training partners can be flown in from elsewhere.

While some fighters bring in outsiders to help add to their camp, Perry’s camp will by its nature be entirely made of outsiders. That doesn’t mean Perry will be without high level training partners, though.

Perry shows off training with Yoel Romero

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Yolo Romero ! Terrorizing workouts.

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Yoel Romero has had a rough year so far, having picked up his third loss in a row back in March against Israel Adesanya, but was recently seen again on Instagram training with Perry.

As a high level fighter in the welterweight division, it’s not hard to imagine that Perry will be able to train with some pretty good fighters in the buildup to his next fight, which likely won’t be for a while after his unanimous decision victory against Mickey Gall.

The victory brought him to a 2-2 record in his last four fights, which isn’t good enough to get into the top fifteen in a tough division like this one but should be enough to start launching Perry in that direction again. After all, there’s only so many players that bring the same kind of action to the octagon.

New York Mets: Atlanta Braves Ride Offense to Dominating 14-1 Win

New York Mets, Rick Porcello

Edwin Diaz woke up a sleeping giant when he allowed Saturday’s game-tying home run to Marcell Ozuna. The Atlanta Braves carried the momentum from their extra-inning win to steamroll the New York Mets 14-1.

It did not take long for the Braves to spoil Rick Porcello‘s Mets debut. Porcello lived up to his 5.5 ERA from the 2019 season to allow seven runs on seven hits, with three walks and failed to record an out in the third inning before his outing ended. Corey Oswalt replaced him and pitched how you would expect a pitcher with a career ERA over six to pitch.

The Braves jumped all over Oswalt to add three home runs and five more runs to their total. Every player in the Braves starting lineup recorded a hit, and they scored in six of the first seven innings. Dansby Swanson and Ozzie Albies did the most damage on the day.

Swanson recorded three hits, including a double and home run, while driving in five. Albies also recorded three hits, including two doubles, and drove in three runs.

Quiet Offense

Braves starter Sean Newcomb gave the Mets every opportunity they could ask to push some runs across. Newcomb struggled to find consistency with any of his pitches but got out of trouble when he needed to. The combination of hitters who are not ready and the hangover of Saturday’s loss created a team that had no energy and was as flat as the cardboard cutouts surrounding the field.

The Mets had at least two runners reach base in each of the first four innings but only scored once. It allowed Newcomb to get through 3.1 innings, only allowing the one run when allowing seven baserunners. Jholuys Chacin shut the Mets down with 3.2 shutout innings in relief of Newcomb, quieting any hopes the Mets had of coming back.

Most concerning for the Mets is only recording five runs over the first three games of the season. Pete Alonso has only recorded one hit and timing looks completely off through his first handful of at-bats. With the Mets starting rotation in shambles, they needed plenty more from their offense to be competitive.

Michael Conforto and Brandon Nimmo are the only two hitters posing a threat right now. Conforto went 4-for-8 and Nimmo 3-for-10 in the series, both putting together long at-bats in the process.

Early Injury

Eduardo Nunez came in during the blowout and injured himself, trying to leg out a groundball in the 14-1 blowout. He dealt with knee issues over the last two seasons and said he hyperextended his knee. The Mets will evaluate him before Monday’s game, but the Mets also have backup infielders Luis Guillorme and Andres Gimenez on the roster.

Speaking of Monday, the Mets begin a four-game home and home series against the Boston Red Sox. It will be their first interleague matchup of the season and the first time playing in Fenway Park since 2018. Michael Wacha makes his Mets debut and hopes his first start is the complete opposite of Porcello’s. The Red Sox will use Josh Osich as the opener for game one at 7:35 p.m.

 

New York Knicks: Gregg Popovich says exactly what we needed to hear about Tom Thibodeau

New York Knicks, Tom Thibodeau

The New York Knicks hired Tom Thibodeau last week to lead the franchise as their next head coach.

Thibodeau has a fantastic history in basketball, coaching the Chicago Bulls from 2010 to 2016 when he moved no to the Minnesota Timberwolves. However, while in Chicago, he ranked no worse than second in the Central division. While his team never won a championship, he made it to the conference finals once and the semi-finals twice.

His time in Minnesota wasn’t as successful, as he earned a playoff appearance once in his first two seasons. He was fired last year, finishing with a .475 win percentage over 40 games. Historically, he has a fantastic track record and has a career winning percentage over .500.

The New York Knicks hired a coach with amazing comparisons:

He has been compared to legendary NFL coach Bill Belichick. Tom is known for his attention to detail and organization. His mannerisms mimic Belichick’s closely, which is a great thing.

Another legendary coach, Gregg Popovich, had only good things to say about Thibodeau joining the Knicks.

“Tommy’s a seasoned veteran who it goes without saying understands what wins what loses,” Popovich said Saturday on a Zoom call when asked by The Post about Thibodeau’s Knicks hiring. “He knows how to put a program together, create a culture, be demanding. At the same time, make people accountable. It’s easy to demand things, but making people accountable and wanting to play the right way is not something that’s easy for everybody to do. But Tom knows it inside and out.”

“He’ll be a great choice to organize the situation there, develop a plan, start a culture stick to it and be persistent and get after it,” Popovich said. “It’s a great choice.”

The Knicks got a good one with Thibodeau, and I would be surprised if he didn’t run the offense through RJ Barrett, their best young player. With another high draft pick upcoming, the team could look a little bit different next year. New general manager Leon Rose is also looking to expand on his connections and draw interest from some of the league stars.

New York Giants: Why Jabrill Peppers Will Be An Improved Player In 2020

New York Giants, Jabrill Peppers

The New York Giants have put together a young, talented secondary entering the 2020 NFL season. New York has invested plenty of assets into its defensive secondary over the past two years. The Giants drafted three defensive backs in 2019, signed James Bradberry to a lucrative contract in 2020, then drafted three more defensive backs in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Possibly the most crucial acquisition in the secondary, though, was a trade made in the 2019 offseason. The infamous Odell Beckham Jr. trade that sent New York’s star receiver to Cleveland yielded the Giants a talented, young safety: Jabrill Peppers.

Flashes Of Great Potential

In his first season with the New York Giants, Jabrill Peppers had flashes of greatness. The potential was clearly there. Unfortunately, where there were great moments, there were also poor moments. Jabrill was inconsistent in the Giants’ defense last season, as he had been in his first two seasons with the Browns. This could have been a product of the Giants’ inefficient defensive scheme that saw a number of talented players struggle in 2019.

Despite the struggles, there was enough shown by Peppers on the field to convince the Giants that he has a future with the team. New York picked up his fifth-year option, a no-brainer decision considering the financial bargain. Jabrill was productive in 2019, being somewhat of a turnover-machine.

Peppers forced 3 fumbles in 2019 and had 1 interception which he took back to the end zone. Peppers also defended 5 passes, totaled 76 tackles and 5 tackles for loss, all in an 11-game span. He did miss 11 tackles, though, and allowed opposing quarterbacks to complete 63.9% of passes for 268 yards and 1 touchdown against him. These numbers are not terrible by any means, but they definitely exhibit room for improvement.

Luckily for the Giants, there is reason to expect improvement out of Jabrill Peppers in 2020.

New York Yankees Recap: Yankees squeak by the Nationals and take the series

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres

This afternoon in the nation’s capital, the New York Yankees won their bullpen game against the National’s Patrick Corbin.  The bullpen game was caused by Masahiro Tanaka not being able to make his start due to being hit in the head.  Tanaka was hit by a comebacker from Giancarlo Stanton.  So as not to interrupt the rotation, they gave the start to Jonathan Loaisga.

The first six innings dragged by for Yankee fans as the Yankees could do nothing off Patrick Corbin, but at the top of the seventh inning Corbin made a mistake, and Gleyber Torres took advantage of it and hit a homer into the seats of left field. Mistake number two for the Nats was manager Dave Martinez took Corbin out of the game with only 76 pitches thrown.

For the Nationals, it was all downhill for the rest of the game. Will Harris that you might remember from his appearances in the Astros postseason, took over for Corbin. Harris immediately gave up a home run to Luke Voit, and just like that, the game was tied at 2.

The Nationals took the lead early when Jonathan Loaisiga, who pitched well through three, gave up a homer to Trea Turner for the one-run lead. In the fourth, David Hale replaced Loaisiga. Starlin Castro doubled, Howie Kendrick grounded out moving Castro to third.  Eric Thames singled driving in Castro for the 2-0 Nationals lead. Hale induced a double play to get out of the inning.

At the top of the fifth, Adam Ottavino hit Yan Gomes with a pitch, but he too got out of the inning with a double play.

After the Yankees got two runs in the seventh, the fun began.  With the scored tied in the eighth Aaron Hicks singles, Gary Sanchez singles, Aaron Judge struck out, but Gleyber Torres did the job with a single driving in Hicks for the Yankees first lead of the day.  Yankees 3-2.  Later in the inning, Giancarlo Stanton walked and loaded the bases.  Luke Voit struck out, leaving the bases loaded.

The bottom of the eighth with Tommy Kahnle on the mound, not having his best stuff, he loaded the bases for the Nationals by intentionally walking Howie Kendrick.  Just when it looked like the Yankees would lose the lead, Kahnle got Erick Thames to strikeout ending the inning.  Although the Yankees would have liked a smoother inning from Kahnle, he proved how resourceful he was by making his pitches and getting out of trouble.

Zack Britton created some of his own nerves with Yankee fans when he too didn’t have his best stuff either.  Temporarily Britton will be the Yankees closer while Aroldis Chapman is out with the coronavirus. Britton before coming to the Yankees was the closer for the Baltimore Orioles. He eventually closed out the inning and got the save.  Chad Green, who pitched the sixth and seventh inning, got the win.

Other game notes:  The star of the game was Gleyber Torres, who was 3-4, including his home run dinger.  Unfortunately, he also had two errors at short. Catcher Gary Sanchez had a passed ball but redeemed himself with an excellent throw to third base catching pinch-runner Emilio Bonafacio while trying to steal third base. The final score was Yankees 3 and the Nations 2, allowing the Yankees to win the series.

Tonight the New York Yankees will travel to Philadelphia to meet up with Joes Girardi’s Phillies for a two-game series.  The Yankee home Opening Day will be on Wednesday when they face the same Phillies for another two-game series before they meet the Boston Red Sox at the Stadium.

New York Yankees: 1 winner and 1 loser from last second victory over Washington

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres

The New York Yankees faced off against the Washington Nationals on Sunday afternoon in the third and final game of the series. After splitting the first two games and failing to provide any offensive power in game two, the Yankees battled to earn a late lead in their 3-2 win on Sunday.

After giving up runs in the third and fourth inning, it took seven innings for the Yankees to finally break out. Nationals’ pitcher Patrick Corbin allowed just two hits through 6.1 innings. He blanked the Yankees for the most part, earning eight strikeouts and allowing two hits, both to Gleyber Torres.

Let’s take a look at the winner and loser from New York Yankees victory over Washington:

LOSER: Aaron Judge/Giancarlo Stanton

Judge had an off day despite hitting two balls nicely to left field. He finished the day 0-for-4 with one strikeout. He is currently batting .167 on the season, but facing off against a great team three consecutive times would do that to anyone.

He will look to bounce back against the Philadelphia Phillies on Monday in Philly. However, the other Yankees’ top slugger, Giancarlo Stanton, earned a walk over four at-bats. The remainder of his opportunities resulted in strikeouts. Despite his off game, he still batting .444 on the season. Patrick Corbin had his number all game, utilizing his slider to the inside corner to catch Stanton swinging consistently.

WINNER: Gleyber Torres/Tommy Kahnle

Gleyber Torres was a clear winner offensively for the Yankees, despite throwing two balls in the dirt that lead to base runners late in the game. Torres earned his first hit in the top of the fourth inning and hit a home run off Corbin in the top of the seventh. This was a huge moment for Gleyber, who has been struggling to get his first hit through the first two games, and his confidence was clearly showing at the plate.

He will look to carry his momentum into the series Vs. the Phillies, but he must improve his efficiency at shortstop if he wishes to cement himself at the position.

Tommy Kahnle is another player that showed quality. He worked his way out of a bases-loaded jam and recorded three strikeouts over one inning. He allowed just one hit and one walk, but his fastball was touching 98 mph, and his changeup landed at 91. He will be utilized heavily throughout the course of the season, and the Yankees are lucky to have a player with his capabilities.

New York Jets: Four fun facts about newcomer Bradley McDougald

The New York Jets’ historic trade of Jamal Adams netted them McDougald, who has built a solid NFL career out of Kansas.

For better or worse, Bradley McDougald is already a part of New York sports lore, forever the answer to the final trivia question involving Jamal Adams.

Until next April’s draft, McDougald, 29, is the only name attached to the New York Jets’ compensation for Adams, who was dealt to the Seattle Seahawks in exchange for a trio of picks, two of which reside in the first round. The safety is an experienced veteran who entered the league as an undrafted free agent in 2013. After some time as a reserve in Kansas City and Tampa Bay, McDougald made a bit of a name for himself in Seattle, stepping up in the secondary when Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor dealt with injuries.

McDougald, an alum of Kansas University, celebrated his New York arrival on Twitter and was warmly welcomed by fellow green newcomer Mekhi Becton.

What should Jets fans know about the man filling Adams’ lofty cleats? ESM has you covered…

He Has More Interceptions Than Adams

Perhaps lost in the relative glory of Adams’ Jets career was the fact that he only earned two interceptions in green (one last season). While McDougald has had the advantage of far more NFL service, he has earned a respectable 10 interceptions over the last six seasons, one of only 32 NFL safeties to earn double-digit interceptions in that span. McDougald also has a multi-interception game under his belt, doing so in 2018’s season opener in Denver. The first interception in his career came against Drew Brees in a 2014 season finale. His propensity for “receptions” should come of little surprise. McDougald emerged from Dublin, Ohio as a receiver, but opted to fully transition to safety after his sophomore year in Lawrence (going both ways over his first two seasons). The only career receiving touchdown McDougald earned turned out to be a big one. It was a 20-yard score that served as the Jayhawks’ first points in an upset win over ranked Georgia Tech.

He’s Another Multi-Sport Athlete

Does Sam Darnold have a new partner in the perimeter? McDougald starred on Saturdays at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium, but he wouldn’t have been so out of place at the more renowned Allen Fieldhouse on the Jayhawks’ campus. Over at Dublin Scioto High School, McDougald was an all-district selection on the hardwood (in addition to the gridiron) while starring for the Fighting Irish. It was a basketball coach, in fact, that first discovered McDougald’s athletic potential. Elementary school mentor Robert Jefferson, affectionately referred to by McDougald as “Coach J”, remains an influential figure on the defender’s life, even setting him up on a path for life after football.

“He was a very influential person in my life,” McDougald said in a 2010 feature on Kansas’ athletics website. “If I could do for someone else what he did for me, I would be happy. I am majoring in communications, but when I graduate I want to do the Teach For America program.”

He Has a Special Source of Inspiration

Bradley plays with the strength of two McDougalds out on the field, as he plays the game in honor of his brother Brandon. The elder McDougald had his left leg amputated during a fifth grade battle with osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer. Brandon now serves as an inspiration to his younger brother, as Bradley was happy to reveal to the Seattle Times in a January 2019 feature.

“His situation definitely changed my outlook at an early age,” Bradley McDougald expounded to Mike Vorel. “Take nothing for granted. Just go out there and enjoy it. Don’t get lost in the days. Make all the days count. All those cliché things you hear all the time, really apply them, because it really hits close to home when I have a brother who’s not able to go out there and enjoy the game that I love playing.”

“I really live through my little brother,” Brandon added. “He played football, basketball all through high school, middle school. Just being able to go to his games and see him compete at this level is just really a blessing. It’s just amazing even to live through him and see him play and be doing so well right now.”

He Came Up Big Last Postseason

McDougald was a major factor behind the Seahawks’ 17-9 win in Philadelphia during January’s NFC Wild Card playoffs. He led all defenders with 11 tackles, including a sack of Carson Wentz. His biggest plays of the afternoon came in the second half, first sharing a third-down tackle for a loss with Poona Ford in Seattle territory (leading to one of Philadelphia’s three field goals) and later stopped Dallas Goedert short of a crucial first down on Philadelphia’s penultimate possession, leading to an unsuccessful fourth down try. McDougald would later earn four tackles (one for a loss) and pass breakup in Seattle’s unsuccessful Divisional playoff trek to Green Bay.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

WATCH: Yankees’ Gleyber Torres and Luke Voit smash 7th inning homers to reinvigorate team

New York Yankees, Gleyber Torres

When the New York Yankees needed him most, shortstop Gleyber Torres answered the call. With Washington Nationals pitcher Patrick Corbin absolutely dominating the Yankees through seven innings, a spark was needed to reinvigorate the team.

Prior to Torres’ home run, Corbin had lasted 6.1 innings, allowing just one run and logging eight strikeouts. Torres hit earned his first hit earlier on in the top of the fourth, giving the Yankees their first hit of the game and his first hit of the season.

However, the offensive spark didn’t end there, as Luke Voit followed closely behind with an absolute piss missile of a shot to left field, bolting into the first row of seats. The Bombers desperately needed some action on a hot, sunny day in the nation’s capital.

New York Islanders: Is Time Running out for Cal Clutterbuck?

New York Islanders, Cal Clutterbuck

Cal Clutterbuck was traded to the New York Islanders on June 30th, 2013, for a 3rd round pick and Nino Niederreiter. For the last seven years, Islander fans have watched Clutterbuck become a staple of the best 4th line in the league. But, his glory days are fully behind him now. Clutterbuck isn’t the hard-hitting instigator who can snipe the toy department in crunch time that he used to be. Clutterbuck was injured most of this year with an unfortunate skate laceration to the wrist, and that won’t affect my judgment of his play. I just don’t see the real Clutterbuck anymore. I believe this is the end of the road for #15 on the island.

Salary Cap Issues

The Islanders are in some serious need of cap space relief. General manager Lou Lamoriello has to make some serious moves to retain stars like Mat Barzal, Ryan Pulock, Devon Toews, Ilya Sorokin, and Adam Pelech. Clutterbuck made 3.5 million dollars for the 19′-20′ season, and his cap hit will decrease to 2.5 million dollars for the next two years. $2.5 million doesn’t seem like a lot, but the Islanders need every thousand upon millions of dollars that they can get. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to move Clutterbuck’s contract to a contending team and getting a 3rd or 4th round pick back.

Developing Prospects

The Islanders have many NHL ready prospects, but no space for them to actually play. The Islanders need a place in the lineup for Kieffer Bellows, Oliver Wahlstrom, Otto Koivula, and Simon Holmstrom (when the time comes). The New York Islanders need new blood, fresh, young, fast, exciting young blood. These young players have abilities that this version of Cal Clutterbuck can’t offer. There’s only so many years a prospect is going to wait their turn to play patiently. Clutterbuck, if moved, has to be moved as soon as possible.

The Counter Argument

Cal Clutterbuck has an insane amount of chemistry with linemates Matty Martin and Casey Cizikas. Clutterbuck was also an assistant captain during the 2016-2017 season. Though this doesn’t matter, Garth Snow made him assistant captain, not Lou Lamoriello. Also, it’s very possible the Islanders let Matty Martin walk this free agency. Lamoriello may look to get rid of Clutterbuck as well.

Conclusion

Cal Clutterbuck’s time with the New York Islanders is possibly over. I wouldn’t be surprised if Lamoriello decides to make Clutterbuck take a pay cut. These decisions will be made over his play in the playoffs. Clutterbuck is synonymous with the Islanders in the 2010s.

Rangers head to Toronto with an exhibition games against the Isles on Wednesday

The time has come for the New York Rangers to head north to Toronto with Phase 4 set to begin on Saturday, Aug. 1.

Hockey has been an afterthought since the league shut down in late March, but now the Blueshirts will pack their bags, so goodbye to their families and head out to their hub city for their Qualifying Round contest against the Carolina Hurricanes. The team will be in their own bubble where they hope to avoid the COVID-19 virus when the playoffs begin next Saturday.

This year’s battle for the Stanley Cup will take 19 wins to see a team hoist the cup around the ice of an empty arena. The 24 teams to participate in the playoffs will do so in front of empty arenas.

Make no mistake about it, the New York Rangers are determined to go far in these playoffs. The young team is determined to “win it all” as they look ahead to playing against a tough Hurricanes team in the best of five-game series.

Roster set for the Playoffs

David Quinn and his team had their final practice on Sunday morning. The projected team 30 players who will travel to Toronto for this year’s playoffs are;

Forwards

Artemi Panarin, Mika Zibanejad, Ryan Strome, Pavel Buchnevich, Chris Kreider, Phillip Di Giuseppe, Kaapo Kakko, Filip Chytil, Jullien Gauthier, Jesper Fast, Brett Howden, Gregg Mckegg, Steve Fogarty, Tim Gettinger, Vitali Kravtsov, Vinni Lettieri, Danny O’Regan.

Brendan Lemieux will travel with the team but will sit out the first two games against Carolina to serve his suspension.

Defense

Jacob Trouba, Adam Fox, Ryan Lindgren, Anthony DeAngelo, Brendan Smith, Marc Staal, Brandon Crawley, Libor Hajek, Darren Raddysh.

Goalies

Henrik Lundqvist, Igor Shesterkin and Alexandar Geaorgiev.

Coach Quinn has stated that he will not name a starting goalie until Friday at the earliest. The goaltender battle has been a tough one though it appears that Shesterkin has had an early edge with the King pressing hard to get the start in what may be his last run with the Rangers.

Rangers beat writer Vince Z. Mercogliano tweeted that Georgiev did not practice on Sunday with the coaching staff going with Henrik and Shesterkin.

MSGN Programming

Madison Square Garden Network will be ramping up the new programming this week with some new shows to get the Rangers fans brought up to speed prior to the start of the Qualifying Round.

MSG Networks will be airing a new preview show for the Rangers with the broadcast team breaking down the Blueshirts qualifying matchups. Sam Rosen, Joe Micheletti, John Giannone, and Steve Valiquette will preview the Rangers/Hurricanes series on MSG at 6:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, July 28th, and Thursday, July 30th.

The network will also premiere an NHL-themed trivia show, “MSG Hockey IQ,” on MSG at 5:30 p.m. ET on Monday, July 27th, featuring Sam Rosen, Joe Micheletti, John Giannone, Steve Valiquette, Brendan Burke, Butch Goring, and Shannon Hogan. During the show, the Rangers and Islanders broadcasters will go over all the upcoming action, while answering select trivia questions to get viewers up to date on the league’s return to play.

The upcoming week’s schedule is as follows;

MSG Hockey IQ
Return to hockey trivia show featuring Sam Rosen, Joe Micheletti, John Giannone, Steve Valiquette, Brendan Burke, Butch Goring, and Shannon Hogan
Debuts on Monday (7/27) at 5:30 p.m. ET on MSG and 6:00 p.m. ET on MSG+

Around the NHL, presented by Chase
Michelle Gingras and Anson Carter with a daily look around the league
Airing weeknights at 6:00 p.m. ET on MSG and 6:30 p.m. ET on MSG+ premieres on Monday (7/27).

Rangers Return to Play Preview
Sam Rosen, Joe Micheletti, John Giannone and Steve Valiquette preview the Rangers/Hurricanes series
Airing on Tuesday (7/28) and Thursday (7/30) at 6:30 p.m. ET on MSG.

GAMEDAY

The Rangers will have their only pre-Qualifying Round game on Wednesday, July 29 against the New York Islanders. The game can be seen on the MSG Network at 8 p.m. with Sam, Joe, and the entire broadcast team calling the game from the MSG Studios in New York City.