New York Giants: Kenny Golladay lists one advantage of Freddie Kitchens over Jason Garrett

new york giants, kenny golladay

The New York Giants haven’t been able to change their offense significantly since firing Jason Garrett. It’s just too late in the season to make a move like that, and the Giants are for the most part stuck with the same basic system until the offseason. With that being said, there’s still some advantages from making a change during the season at offensive coordinator.

While you aren’t going to see many NFL players publicly throw their coaches under the bus, you might get the idea from certain players’ statements that Garrett wasn’t the most popular coordinator. Not just because of the offense’s slow performance during his entire tenure, but because of a rigid system that didn’t seem to take much player input.

According to wide receiver Kenny Golladay, that’s a bit different under Freddie Kitchens.

Giants offense involving players more under Kitchens

“It’s huge. You can come over to the sideline and actually, since you’re the one out there running, you can actually tell them what you’re seeing,” Golladay said on Thursday, when asked about Kitchens taking more input. “It’s one thing running it on the field and a coach standing on the sideline trying to get all the way on the other side of the field. Just going in there and giving them
good information, and not giving them selfish information.”

Unfortunately, the change at offensive coordinator was made too late for the Giants to change things up significantly. They’re still running with the same playbook, the same terminology, and so on, as confirmed by coaches and players. But less rigid playcalling and more creativity may bring benefits through the rest of the season, even if the core of the offense remains the same.

Golladay has 372 yards and no touchdowns this season. It’s not the season that was expected from him after the Giants signed him to a big deal to become their number one weapon. While some of that is on Golladay, some of it also rests on Jason Garrett’s shoulders. The offensive coordinator is, after all, responsible for making use of the talent on hand.

It’s unclear how the rest of the season will go for Golladay. But from the looks of things, the receiver is more than a little satisfied with the decision to move on at OC.

UFC books headliner between Sean Strickland and Jack Hermansson

The UFC has finalized a big time matchup between top ten middleweight contenders. ESPN’s Brett Okamoto was the first to report this afternoon that the promotion had finalized a matchup between Sean Strickland (24-3) and Jack Hermansson (22-6).

The matchup will headline a UFC Fight Night on February 5th. When these two meet, Hermansson will be looking to pick up his second straight win inside the octagon.

It seems like just yesterday that we were talking about Jack Hermansson being a potential title challenger. However, The Joker has fallen on tougher times as of late.

Halfway through 2019, Hermansson had won four in a row and the UFC gave him a main event on his home soil. However, Jared Cannonier was able to stop Hermansson.

Starting with that fight, Hermansson is just 2-2 in his last four. That said, he did look good in his last fight against Edmen Shahbazyan where he picked up a unanimous decision win.

Will Strickland enter UFC title contention?

This main event on February fifth will be the second straight main event for Sean Strickland. This is a massive opportunity for him to solidify himself as a title contender in the UFC’s middleweight division.

Since returning in 2020, Strickland has been on a tear. In just over a year, Strickland has gone 4-0 in the UFC and those four wins caused the promotion to book him against former middleweight champion Luke Rockhold.

However, Rockhold had to pull out of their fight with back issues. The UFC has been working on another fight for Strickland for a while and finally settled on an opponent.

Strickland’s grappling is really going to be tested when these two meet in February. However, if he’s able to pass this test, you can start mentioning him in the title picture which nobody would have predicted just over a year ago.

UFC Vegas 44 Preview: Clay Guida – Leonardo Santos

Tomorrow night on the main card of UFC Vegas 44, we will see a lightweight showdown between two aging veterans. The popular Clay Guida (36-21) returns tomorrow night as he takes on the talented Leonardo Santos (18-4-1).

Leonardo Santos will be looking to bounce back tomorrow night after suffering defeat in his last fight. The last time we saw Santos was against Grant Dawson back in March. Santos looked like he was seconds away from winning, but was stopped in the final seconds of the final round.
Had he won that fight, Santos would have won 13 out of 14 fights with one draw. So far, Santos is 7-1-1 in the UFC, but he hasn’t been very active. Those nine fights have spanned the last eight years. He is 41 years old and looked old in his last fight which could hinder his output tomorrow night.
That said, he’s taking on another older UFC vet in Clay Guida. The Carpenter is a fan favorite and for good reason. Whether it’s his antics in the cage or the constant movement, Guida has been a source of entertainment for UFC fans since 2006.
In his last fight, he lost a really close decision to Mark Madsen. Had he won that fight, Guida would have won two in a row. The veteran has been in there with some of the very best that the UFC has to offer and he will definitely test Santos tomorrow.

UFC Vegas 44 Prediction

This is a really weird fight to predict seeing as I don’t really know what to expect from Santos. Santos has had a tremendous career and he’s enjoyed a ton of success, but he hit a bit of a wall in his last fight especially near the end of the fight.
Unless he pull away early on, he could be in some trouble against Guida if he hits a wall. Guida is going to come on strong in the later rounds because he simply doesn’t run out of energy. So if Santos isn’t far ahead on the scorecards at UFC Vegas 44, the fight is there for Guida to take.
If this was prime Clay Guida, I’d say he has a great shot. However, this isn’t prime Clay Guida. Guida hasn’t shown the same ability to close the distance in recent fights. His takedown attempts aren’t great and his strikes are coming few and far between.
Ultimately, I think the Santos is going to get it done at UFC Vegas 44. I’m expecting some big early moments for Santos. While Guida will definitely score some points throughout, it won’t be enough to win a decision.
Prediction: Leonardo Santos by Unanimous Decision

UFC Vegas 44 Preview: Jose Aldo – Rob Font

Tomorrow night in the main event of UFC Vegas 44 we will see a big time matchup in the bantamweight division with potential title implications. Former featherweight champion Jose Aldo (30-7) will be taking on the surging Rob Font (19-4).

Rob Font has been on a huge run over the last few years. After dropping a fight to Raphael Assuncao back in 2018, Font has gone a perfect 4-0. That streak started with a win over current Bellator bantamweight champion Sergio Pettis.
His last two wins came against former champion Cody Garbrandt and former title challenger Marlon Moraes. SImply put, Font has proven that he belongs near the top of the bantamweight division. However, he’s going to have his hands full tomorrow night.
It’s crazy to think about Jose Aldo’s historic career and think about the fact that he’s only 35 years old. Aldo has been one of the best fighters to ever step foot inside the UFC‘s octagon and he’s currently trying to chase down another world title.
Last year, Aldo lost in a vacant title fight against Petr Yan. However, he’s responded well with really good wins over Chito Vera and Pedro Munhoz. With a win over Rob Font at UFC Vegas 44, Aldo will be right back in the title picture at 135 pounds.

UFC Vegas 44 Prediction

This fight is so interesting because of how good both of these men are from range. For Rob Font, he’s one of the best pure boxers in the UFC. He’s incredibly slick with counters and long punches which could really give Jose Aldo problems.
That said, Aldo thrives from range when he can use his kicks and Font with his boxing-first style is usually very heavy on that front leg. Look for Aldo to potentially take advantage of that. One big thing for Aldo at UFC Vegas 44 is going to be his speed.
Font has really good timing, but he’s at a huge speed disadvantage. Aldo can explode into shots and if Font is just a little off with his timing, he could pay a big price. While Rob Font is a popular pick, I think Aldo gets it done tomorrow night. One of those big explosions will lead to a big shot and when Aldo hurts you, he will likely finish you.
Prediction: Jose Aldo by TKO – Round 3

Deuce on the loose: Knicks rookie Miles McBride explodes vs Skyhawks

New York Knicks rookie point guard Miles McBride keeps on getting better with more games in the G League.

In his third G League assignment, McBride recorded a career-high 31 points to lead the Westchester Knicks to a 123-102 rout of the College Park Skyhawks Thursday night at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, Connecticut.

The Knicks improved to 3-6 in the G League Showcase after holding the Skyhawks to a season-low 11 points in the opening quarter and never looked back.

McBride shot 12 of 20 from the field and hit 5 of 10 from downtown for his scoring rampage. He added nine assists, five rebounds, and one steal in 36 minutes. McBride’s scoring performance has jumped from 25 to 29, and 31 points in his first three G League games. He is averaging 28.0 points and 7.7 assists, along with 5.3 rebounds and 2.0 steals, while shooting 48 percent from the field and 41 percent from downtown on a staggering 9.7 attempts.

Luka Samanic, Knicks’ two-way player, had his fifth straight 20-point game. The 6-foot-1 Croatian forward also earned his third double-double of the season with 25 points and 16 rebounds that went with four assists and one steal. Samanic picked apart Skyhawks defense with an efficient 8 of 14 shooting from the field, including 3 for 6 three-pointers.

Samanic is averaging a double-double with 26.8 points and 10.3 rebounds in six games. The 21-year old stretch four is shooting 54.6 percent from the field and hitting 44 percent of his 5.7 three-point attempts per game.

Two more Knicks players contributed at least 20 points. Aamir Simms also logged in a double-double with 23 points, 10 boards, and two blocks, while Brandon Goodwin chipped in 20 points and four assists.

The still winless Skyhawks drew 19 points each from Atlanta rookies Jalen Johnson and Sharife Cooper.

McBride was recalled and practiced with the Knicks on Friday morning. But he is scheduled to play again in the Westchester-College Park rematch later in the night.

Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo

Giants Injury Report: Daniel Jones ruled out, pair of starting receivers doubtful

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The New York Giants are preparing to take on the Miami Dolphins on Sunday afternoon, but they will be without several starters on both sides of the ball as they look to string together another victory. Coming off a win against Philadelphia in which the defense held the Eagles to just seven points, the offense lagged behind.

Despite having quarterback Daniel Jones on hand, the Giants managed just 13 points, and with Mike Glennon slated to start against Miami, optimism certainly isn’t brewing.

Full injury report for the New York Giants:

OUT:

LB Trent Harris (Ankle)

DB Adoree Jackson (Quad)

TE Kaden Smith (Knee)

QB Daniel Jones (Neck)

The two big names here are Jones and Adoree Jackson, who both play significant roles. Jones was ruled out with a neck injury, not being cleared for contact this week, according to head coach Joe Judge. Without him, Big Blue will lean on Glennon, who is a pure pocket passer, taking out a significant portion of the Giants’ playbook.

Jackson, on the other hand, leaves a void at the No. 2 cornerback spot, and with Darnay Holmes landing on IR and rookie Rodarius Williams suffering a torn ACL earlier in the season, Patrick Graham will have to rely on rookie third-round pick Aaron Robinson to supplement the loss.

DOUBTFUL:

WR Sterling Shepard (Quad)

WR Kadarius Toney (Oblique/Quad)

Both Sterling Shepard and Kadarius Toney are doubtful for the contest, indicating they are unlikely to play. Without both starters, expect to see more Darius Slayton and Kenny Golladay for the Giants, but with the quarterback position in flux, they will likely have to rely on Saquon Barkley and the running game.

QUESTIONABLE:

FB Cullen Gillaspia (Calf)

WR John Ross (Illness/Quad) T

E Kyle Rudolph (Ankle)

T Nate Solder (Elbow)

Starting right tackle, Nate Solder was added to the injury report on Friday with an elbow issue, and if he fails to play on Sunday, expect to see plenty of Matt Peart. Peart was thrown under the bus a bit this past week by the coaching staff, indicating that Solder is the better player despite plenty of awful reps.

Report: Knicks GM Scott Perry expected to be considered for Trail Blazers job

The firing of Portland Trail Blazers president of basketball operations and general manager Neil Olshey has opened up one of the league’s dream jobs — constructing a championship roster around Damian Lillard’s final prime years.

New York Knicks general manager Scott Perry is expected to get strong consideration, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo! Sports.

Perry has a longstanding relationship with current Trail Blazers coach Chauncey Billups. Perry was a Pistons front office executive when Billups won his only NBA championship in 2004.

When Perry was with the Orlando Magic, he recruited Billups to become Frank Vogel’s top assistant in 2016. But Billups ultimately chose family over the coaching opportunity. Perhaps this is the perfect time for them to link up in a pivotal season for Portland and its franchise player.

Before his arrival to New York in 2017, Perry had extensive experience as a front office executive with the Pistons, Seattle Supersonics, Magic, and the Sacramento Kings.

Perry is well-respected around the league after building a solid resume as a front office executive for over two decades.

He helped the Pistons construct a roster that won two Eastern Conference titles out of six appearances (2003-2008) and one NBA championship in 2004. Before the Seattle Supersonics relocated to Oklahoma City, Perry worked as their assistant general manager for one season and was partly responsible for drafting Kevin Durant. He returned to Detroit for four more seasons as vice president of basketball operations. Afterward, he continued his work with Magic’s front office that selected Victor Oladipo and Aaron Gordon and constructed the current Knicks core as the general manager.

Perry recently signed a two-year extension with the Knicks after he helped team president Leon Rose’s seamless transition to his executive role from being one of the top basketball agents.

Another name floated around in the Yahoo! Sports story is Chicago Bulls general manager Marc Eversley. Meanwhile, Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer added Memphis Grizzlies executive Tayshaun Prince and San Antonio Spurs executive Brent Barry to the mix as potential long-term replacements.

Billups and Prince were teammates in the Pistons championship team. Barry is a prominent basketball figure in Portland after starring for four years at the Oregon State University in college.

The Trail Blazers fired Olshey for violations of the organizations’ code of conduct. They have promoted director of player personnel Joe Cronin to interim GM while searching for a permanent replacement.

Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo

Yankees make two coaching hires to fill out Major League staff

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The New York Yankees may be in the middle of a lockout, but they promoted two player development staff members this week, according to Lindsey Adler of The Athletic.

Former University of Missouri and Houston Astros farm coach Dillon Lawson joined the Yankees three years ago, working in their minor-league system as a hitting coordinator. Lawson was elevated to a major league hitting coach spot this week, with his contract expiring this off-season and in need of a new deal. The Yankees clearly didn’t want to lose Lawson, providing him with a promotion instead.

In addition, general manager Brian Cashman elected to elevate Desi Druschel, a minor-league manager of pitch development to an assistant pitching coach. Skipper Aaron Boone signed a new three-year deal this off-season, and he will gain a bevy of new coaches to work with this upcoming season, given the lockout ends at some point.

The Yankees need all the help they can get after a tough 2021 campaign where they struggled in both hitting and pitching. The team finished 17th out of 30 in slugging percentage, 19th in runs scored, and 23rd in batting average, all far lower than anticipated for a team that relies on their explosive bats.

Based on these numbers, that is why Cashman remaining quiet in free agency was a bit of a surprise. However, it was clear he was instructed to remain patient throughout the lockout, and the expectation is that he will come out guns blazing once things return to normal and players are once again able to sign new contracts.

Knicks’ Julius Randle details heated exchange with Evan Fournier after first half collapse

julius randle, knicks, evan fournier

With the first half coming to an end on Thursday evening against the Chicago Bulls, the New York Knicks stepped off the floor in disarray. After allowing 37 points in the first quarter and 32 points in the second quarter, Knicks’ forward Julius Randle and guard Evan Fournier were seen arguing as they walked off the floor in a heated exchange.

Both players suggested it was a form of communication, and that it benefited the team as a whole, coming out entirely different in the second half, mounting a 21 point comeback despite the loss.

“It looks like we’re arguing,” Randle said. “…. We went to the locker room (to) talk it out. We say regardless, at the end of the day we’ve got each other’s back and we’re in this together. That’s important.

Competitive communication is a positive, and it clearly helped the Knicks score 32 points in the third quarter, holding Chicago to just 20.

“…. You can have differences. You can communicate and talk and say what you see on the court. But at the end of the day, we’ve got to know that we’re riding with each other regardless.

Randle finished the game with 30 points, despite missing several clutch free throws down the stretch and turning the ball over in the most important moment. With fatigue building and a lack of awareness, Randle helped blow a second consecutive game, something the Knicks simply cannot afford to do after fighting their way back in both contests against Brooklyn and Chicago.

However, it is good to see the players showing competitive spirit, as Fournier indicated communication like this needs to happen, as letting things boil can lead to bigger issues.

“I think the key was communicating,” Fournier said afterward. “I would rather have that than not saying anything and hold grudges and stuff. So, stuff like that happens all the time and I’m glad it happened, because we played much better in that third quarter.”

The Knicks one will look ahead to the Denver Nuggets on Saturday afternoon at 1 PM. Denver has lost seven of their last eight games, recently falling to the Orlando Magic, arguably the worst team in basketball.

The Knicks have a fantastic opportunity to bounce back and get back on the win column after falling to .500 on the season.

Yankees News: 4 spots Cashman desperately needs to improve, Matt Olson trade in jeopardy

yankees, matt olson

Top New York Yankees links, December 3:

Yankees will have to fill these roster holes when MLB lockout ends – NY Post

The New York Yankees failed to get anything done during free agency before the MLB lockout, but clearly, that was part of their long-term plan. With ownership battling to retain some of their leverage in player negotiations and free agency, the lockout could last quite some time, especially after wild accusations were made from both parties after the stoppage commenced.

However, that doesn’t ignore the needs of the Yankees, and once things open back up again, they will have to be active with their spending. Other teams will be looking to pick up players before the start of Spring Training and the 2020 regular season, so Cashman will have a plan in place which he would like to execute quickly.

There are four spots that stand out for the Bombers, including shortstop, centerfield, catcher, and starting pitching. Luckily, they still have Carlos Correa and Trevor Story on the market to choose from, but they will likely earn massive contracts after the lockout. In centerfield, the Bombers were connected to several free-agent prospects and even spoke to the Baltimore Orioles about Cedric Mullins, one of their star players.

As for catcher, the Yankees tendered Gary Sanchez to avoid arbitration, paying him $8 million despite another down year for the slugger. Unless he can turn things around dramatically in 2022, this will likely be the last season for Sanchez in pinstripes. Cashman offered Justin Verlander one year,$ 25 million, but he refused the deal in favor of the Houston Astros, who gave him two years and $50 million with a second-year player option. It is clear that the Yankees need another starter to pair with Gerrit Cole, but a lot of the top options are already off the market.

MLB rumors: Possible Yankees-A’s Matt Olson trade in jeopardy thanks to free agency big-spender – NJ.com

Prior to the lockout, the Yankees were heavily connected to Oakland Athletics first baseman Matt Olson, but that deal could be in jeopardy with the Texas Rangers setting themselves up for a potential acquisition. The Atlanta Braves also checked in on Olsen, who are fearing the potential loss of Freddie Freeman. Freeman is a free agent this off-season and looking for a long-term deal.
It is entirely possible that the Yankees acquire Olson in a blockbuster trade, but Cashman needs to focus primarily on the free agents at hand before making a big splash involving multiple prospects.