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Bengals rookie

July 11, 2016
by sportsideal
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Bengals Rookie’s Unusual Path

Bengals rookie safety Clayton Fejedelem has defied all odds to make it to the NFL, betting on himself all the way to Paul Brown Stadium.

Sitting nervously in his head coach’s office at St. Xavier University on the south side of Chicago, Clayton Fejedelem had to tell one of the few college football coaches in the country to give him a shot out of high school that he was leaving.

This after the Cougars had won the 2011 NAIA national championship in Fejedelem’s freshman campaign, and followed that up with a semi-final appearance in 2012.

It was his year-end meeting with Cougars head coach Mike Feminis, and Fejedelem had to pull himself together.

“I was extremely nervous,” Fejedelem said. “You’re a young man, walking in front of your head coach, and you’ve got to tell him thanks for the opportunity but … I’m trying to go for bigger and better things. It was an awkward, hard conversation to have.”

Feminis couldn’t believe it.

Fejedelem was already an All-American as an underclassman and the Cougars were positioned to contend for another national title over the next two years.

As a 5-foot, 10-inch, 180-pound high schooler from Lemont, a southwest suburb of Chicago, Fejedelem received not a bit of interest from Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I) football programs; and here he was telling Feminis he was leaving St. Xavier to walk-on at one.

Feminis quizzed him. Where are you transferring to?  When told it was Illinois, Feminis caught himself.

Clayton, do you mean Illinois State?

No, Illinois.

Feminis cautioned him. It’s a two-level jump, if not more, to go from the NAIA to the FBS. Your family will have to pay for you to do this, for perhaps the entire time you’re attempting to play.

Fejedelem knew this, but he also knew if he was ever going to fulfill the dream of playing major college football, this was the time to jump.

“I was still young, so going into a whole bunch more college football, if I’m going to do it, I’ve got to make the move now,” Fejedelem said.

Feminis admits he held his reservations, but he wasn’t going to hold Fejedelem back.  The coach offered whatever help he could, and released the player from his commitment at St. Xavier without hesitation.

“Who am I to stop him?” said Feminis, who was invited to Fejedelem’s post-draft party this spring. “You know what, he’s been proving people wrong ever since high school, from the standpoint where not one Division I school gave him a look out of high school. Once he left us, I’m sure there weren’t a lot of people except maybe his mom and dad and brothers that thought he’d have a chance to play at a Big Ten school.”

Walking Illini

After sending a highlight tape out to a few Mid-American Conference and Big Ten schools, Illinois was the school that opened the door for Fejedelem. But it was only cracked, and he could only hope to slip through after sitting out a year.

Former University of Cincinnati co-defensive coordinator Tim Banks was in the same role at Illinois, as well as its secondary coach, when Fejedelem came to campus. Banks stressed that the path Fejedelem was taking was littered with difficult obstacles.

“Any time you’re trying to walk-on to a program, on top of that a power five institution, it’s tough,” said Banks, who is now the co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach at Penn State.

“Obviously a lot of times you’ve got kids there you’ve already invested scholarship money into and you’re going to give those guys every opportunity to be successful.”

Fejedelem was on the fringe of the program, thrown into a school with coaches and teammates that didn’t know him at all. Mix that in with the stark realization that no matter what he did in the weight room or in practice, he wasn’t going to play.

“I’ve always played, I’ve never not been the star – that’s how you kind of are when you go to college to play football – you’re always that guy on your team, you’re always the guy they look to,” he said. “I’m like oh man, I’ve got a year off and even if I compete and I’m the best guy out there nothing will happen. It was kind of a downer. But looking back, it was a blessing in disguise.”

For that year, Fejedelem worked on his physique and mastered the defensive schemes. The slight-of-build defensive back coming out of high school three years ago was now over 6-feet tall and a chiseled 200 pounds.

Finally able to prove his wares with a shot at playing in 2014, Fejedelem took Banks’ words to each walk-on to heart: Make us notice you. Don’t be a get-along guy. Set yourself apart.

“I guess I can kind of be described as a prick – I’ve always got that chip on my shoulder,” Fejedelem said. “I’m not the nicest person on the field. But you have to be noticed as a walk-on. If you’re playing at the same level as a scholarship guy, the scholarship guy is going to get the start, get the job. You have to go above and beyond to even be noticed.”

Fejedelem knew his route to the team, to the field, and ultimately a scholarship: He had to make a mark in meetings, workouts in the gym, drills and in practice, quite literally one snap at a time. And he made the most of it.

“If he got three snaps, he made two plays,” Banks recalled. “If he got five snaps, he made four plays.

“At the end of the day, nine times out of 10, you’re going to end up playing the best guy. The problem is just getting an opportunity to show that you’re one of the better guys.”

That also added to Fejedelem’s anxiousness.

In his mind, he was already one of the best defensive backs on the team. And, in respectful ways, he would let Banks know it.

“I remember him telling me, it might have been his second year there, he thought he was the best DB there. I’m like man, buddy, I don’t even half know your name,” Banks said with a laugh. “I butchered his name up a ton. But he was right. He ended up being probably the best defensive back there, not just in words but in actions.”

Fejedelem finally got a bit of playing time at the end of 2014 and earned a scholarship. But he was quickly on to the next – how can he start? How can he help Illinois win as much as possible? He took that leap, at least individually, in 2015.

He was named Illinois’ defensive player of the year and recorded 140 tackles. His pro day measurables (he wasn’t invited to the NFL Scouting Combine) of a 4.47-second 40-yard dash, a 40.5-inch vertical jump, 20 reps on the 225-pound bench press (after hitting the rack), and over 10-feet in the broad jump, had translated to the field.

“He’s a super athlete, man,” Banks said. “I mean he really is. I don’t know if he gets enough credit for that. I’m not sure why.”

“Once he figured out it was more than just athleticism and he had to kind of understand route combinations, situational football, once he got all that down, I mean the sky was the limit. I really think his best football is ahead of him. I really believe that.”

Always on to the next

Cincinnati Bengals assistant secondary coach Robert Livingston worked the Illinois pro day, and as the Bengals coaching staff and scouts dove in on Fejedelem, all of the intangibles off the field matched up with the film and the stats.

“He’s an old school guy,” Bengals secondary coach Kevin Coyle said.

The Bengals made Fejedelem their final pick of the 2016 draft, filling out the back end of the safety room with a player who they know will play special teams but could push the rest of the group with a high level play in limited snaps.

Head coach Marvin Lewis introduced Fejedelem shortly after picking him as a “great story,” one that is often imagined but rarely executed. Even Fejedelem admits the NFL dream faded after having to go to St. Xavier out of high school.

“It’s probably one in a 500 shot or a one in a 1,000 shot to go from a small college level to being not only on scholarship but being one of the best players in the Big Ten,” Feminis said, unable to stifle an incredulous chuckle.

The NFL has its share of long roads leading to the league, but from zero star high school recruit to the NAIA to walk-on to NFL draft pick in four years?

“What’s really an amazing thing is that he had the self confidence and the determination to say ‘I can do this’ at another level, where some guys might have been content to be at a smaller level and try to be a dominant player,” Coyle said. “Here’s a young man who felt he wanted to take the challenge – and the risk. There’s risk involved, in trying to go to a bigger school and walk-on and see if he could really cut it. Not only did he cut it, he became a dominant player for them and he got drafted in the NFL. It’s an amazing story. It says a lot about his character, a lot about his mental toughness and just overall determination as a person.”

It seems like a long time between Fejedelem’s nervous conversation with Feminis in the winter of 2012 to the call from Marvin Lewis in the spring of 2016, but Fejedelem doesn’t think about it in that context, though. He hasn’t allowed himself to. From the very beginning he’s been on to the next, and that has paid off at every improbable stop.

Fejedelem’s family celebrated the draft while his mind spun forward, to rookie camp, to mini-camps, to training camp. He’s never caught in the moment, because in his situation that moment could be the one that makes or breaks his career – and even more so at the NFL when little is guaranteed. But it’s a position Fejedelem has thrived in for years. He’s just looking to make sure he continues to.
“I just immediately wanted to know what do I do now to get on that team?” Fejedelem said. “I guess that’s kind of always how I was. High school and college then I was a transfer; what do I need to do to get on that team? Now, I have my foot in the door here, what do I need to do to make the team? I guess I was looking for the next step. I didn’t take a step back to take it all in. I’m just living in the moment, trying to make the most out of it.”

“It’s always been how do I better myself, how do I continue to build on my success and just continue to increase my technique and be the best player I can be and help the Bengals win the Super Bowl this year. That’s the end goal.”

 

Swedish soccer player gets red card for farting in game

June 24, 2016
by sportsideal
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Swedish Soccer Player Gets Red Card for Farting in Game

This fart heard round the world is an underdog story.

It’s the rumour of a humble fart, unloosed on the world in a moment of innocence in the anonymity of a game between Swedish soccer clubs nobody had ever heard of. The maker is Adam Lindin Ljungkvist, a left back for Järna SK’s reserve team. They were playing Pershagen SK.

He already had a yellow card.

He also had “a bad stomach,” the Guardian said. So, as he told Länstidningen Södertälje, which we’re going to guess is either a newspaper or a cheap, self-assembled coffee table, “I simply let go.”

There this whole besotted odyssey would have ended. But this little fart was destined for greater things. For global fame. Perhaps fortune. Maybe even a straight-to-TV movie on Lifetime and a spot on Oprah’s bench. Because the referee, Dany Kako, who cares not for your farts, showed Ljungkvist a yellow card.

Which is to say that he almost for sure became the first player in a century and a half of organized soccer to be sent off for cutting the cheese on the field. He and his fart are forever famous. Thanks to the red card.

“Yes, I was shocked,” Ljungkvist told the paper. “It’s the strangest thing I ever experienced in football.”

An opponent agreed him. Kristoffer Linde testified that he “was standing a good distance away but I heard the fart loud and clear. It’s the strangest thing I’ve seen on a pitch, and I’ve been playing football since I was eight years old.”

Ljungkvist, baffled, needed closure. “I asked the referee, ‘What, am I not allowed to break wind a little?’ ” Ljungkvist continued, sensing that the world and the history books would need more information. ” ‘No,’ he replied. … I don’t understand it but maybe he thought I farted in my hand and threw the fart at him. But I did not.”

The referee explained himself. “I perceived it as deliberate provocation,” Kako said, adding that he’d once given a player a yellow for peeing by the field as well. “He did it on purpose and it was inappropriate. Therefore, he received a yellow card.”

Ljungkvist then re-litigated the matter to Aftonbladet, which definitely is a newspaper. “To provoke anyone with a fart is not particularly smart or normal,” he said. “It’s nonsense – I just broke wind and then got a red card. I spoke to the referee afterwards, I was annoyed, but there were no bad words. I just said he was a buffoon.”

 

 

Katherine Heigl Is Already Pregnant

June 20, 2016
by sportsideal
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Katherine Heigl Is Already Pregnant!

Katherine Heigl is already pregnant!

The actress and her eight-years husband, musician Josh Kelley, are expecting their third baby — a boy! — in January, this couple confirmed to PEOPLE exclusively.

Their son will join big sisters Adelaide Marie Hope, 4, and Naleigh Moon, 7.

“The Kelley clan is thrilled to announce that we are expecting a third addition to our family,” the couple told PEOPLE in a statement. “Naleigh and Adelaide could not be more excited to welcome their new sibling into the fold and Josh and I am overflowing with joy and gratitude.”

“This is an incredibly exciting time for us filled with hope, anticipation, and hormones. Well, only I’m filled with hormones, but everyone in the family gets to enjoy them,” Heigl jokes. “We couldn’t be more excited to finally share this news with our fans and are looking forward to continuing to share the journey with you all. ”

Heigl, 37, and New Lane Road singer Kelley, 34, adopted Naleigh from South Korea in September 2009 when she was 9 months old. Heigl, whose sister Margaret was also adopted from Korea, created the name Naleigh as a combination of Nancy, her mom’s name, and Leigh, Margaret’s middle name.

Naleigh was born with a congenital heart problem that was fixed via open-heart surgery before she left Korea according to a Harper’s Bazaar story from 2010. “Her heart is 100 percent fine now,” Heigl told the magazine at the time.

Adelaide was adopted domestically and joined the family in 2012. In December 2012, the actress, who is set to star on CBS’s upcoming legal drama Doubt with Laverne Cox, explained this name choice: “Adelaide because of my great-grandmother, Marie after my middle name, and Hope because that is what the process became.”

She and her family reside in Utah. “It’s a quieter life,” she writes on her lifestyle blog, where she shares “all things that inspire me, give me purpose, and bring beauty, peace and gratitude to my life.”

Building her family through adoption was always on Heigl’s mind.

“Josh and I started talking about it before we were even engaged,” the actress told Parent & Child in 2012. “My sister Meg is Korean, and my parents adopted her three years before I was born. I wanted my own family to resemble the one I came from, so I always knew I wanted to adopt from Korea. We have talked about having biological child as well, but we decided to adopt first. I just wanted to be a mom. So however we do that, it’s fine with me.”

 

Green explains LeBron incident

June 12, 2016
by sportsideal
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Green explains LeBron incident: ‘I’m not going to back down from you’

Draymond Green attributed his incident with LeBron James in game four of the NBA Finals to his refusal to back  from the four-time MVP.

Green helped the Golden State Warriors take a 3-1 lead in the championship series on Friday, defeating the Cleveland Cavaliers 108-97 to leave the defending champions one win away from back-to-back titles.

But the Warriors forward attracted attention for the wrong reasons in a fourth-quarter skirmish with James.

The pair got tangled up away from the ball, with James pushing Green to the floor before stepping over him. In response, Green flung an arm towards the groin of James – making minimal contact – before shoving him, leading the duo to briefly square up.

“I felt he stepped over me, and you’re not just going to step over me,” Green said on NBA TV.

“There are many routes you can take. Don’t just step over me like that. So we had our words and it is what it is. I don’t care who you are. I’m not going to back down from you.”

Speaking to reporters in the locker room, Green added: “It’s the NBA Finals. Game four. They’re trying to tie it up 2-2, we’re trying to go ahead 3-1. Stuff happens.”

Both players were assessed a foul for the incident, although there have been suggestions Green could be subject to league discipline that could keep him out of game five on Monday.

Green will receive an automatic suspension if he receives two more technical fouls or one more flagrant foul. The NBA can upgrade his foul on James to a flagrant if it sees fit.

James, who also took issue to some words directed at him by Green, said: “Draymond just said something that I don’t agree with. I’m all cool with the competition. I’m all fine with that, but the words that came out of his mouth were a little bit overboard.

“And being a guy with pride, a guy with three kids and a family… some things just go overboard and that’s where he took it.

“They’ll [the NBA] take a look at it. We all saw it in the locker room. Like I said, as a competitor, I love going against Draymond and I’m all about going out there and leaving it out on the floor.

“But when it gets a little bit more than it should be, that’s what caused me to have words with him.”

thiem delights in beat over federer

June 2, 2016
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Thiem delights in Beat over Federer

New star Dominic Thiem described himself as the “the happiest person on the earth” after coming from behind to beat Roger Federer in a dramatic Stuttgart Open semi-final.

Twenty-two-year-old Thiem, up to a career-high seventh in the ATP world rankings following his run to the semi-finals of the French Open, saved two match points in a second-set tie-break before finally prevailing 3-6 7-6 (9-7) 6-4 on Saturday.

A thrilling encounter was twice interrupted by showers, at the end of set two – which Thiem had led 5-0 prior to a Federer fightback – and after the Austrian had broken for a 4-3 lead in the decider.

Having beaten seven-time Wimbledon champion Federer, returning this week from the back injury that prevented him from competing at Roland Garros, Thiem will now face Juan Martin del Potro or Philipp Kohlschreiber in Sunday’s final.

“I can’t believe myself. To beat Federer is a dream,” the youngster was quoted as saying by the ATP World Tour’s official website.

“You need a little bit of luck to beat him on his best surface. I’m the happiest person on the earth now.”

Ford-F-150

May 28, 2016
by sportsideal
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5 Top Selling Cars in 2016

5 Top Selling Cars in 2016

1. FORD F-150

MSRP: $33,580

The Ford F-150 and other F-Series pickup trucks from the Ford Motor Company were the top selling car of 2015. Ford sold more than 695,144 of the trucks this year which was almost 20,000 more than in 2014. The F-150 is also one of the most fuel efficient trucks ever produced by the auto manufacturer with a fuel economy rating of 18 MPG (city) and 26 MPG (highway). The maximum speed of the popular pickup truck is more than 105 MPH (107 to be exact), and the vehicle can go from zero to 60 MPH in a sports car-like 5.6 seconds. The stock engine in the auto is a 3.5 liter V-6 with the choice to downgrade to a 2.7 liter V-6 or upgrade to a 5.0 liter V-8 when buying the vehicle new. The power ratings of the truck engines range from 282 to 385 horsepower.

 

2. CHEVROLET SILVERADO 1500

MSRP: $27,285

The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is a top selling car for the 2015 calendar year seeing more than 537,552 trucks sold. With a starting price point in the $20K’s, the popular pickup truck also gets good gas mileage with an 18 MPG (city) and 24 MPG (highway) overall rating. The stock engine of the vehicle is a 4.3 liter V-6 engine rated at 420 horsepower that produces a maximum speed of 99 MPH. The zero to 60 MPH time of the Silverado is only 5.7 seconds, and the truck is sold standard with rear-wheel drive. When buying the auto new, drivers can choose to upgrade to all-wheel drive as well as to get a bigger engine with the Chevy 5.3 or 6.2 liter V-8 engine.

3. DODGE RAM 1500

MSRP: $26,145

The Dodge Ram 1500 is one of the top selling cars of 2015. The auto manufacturer sold more than 400,000 of the popular trucks this past year, and the base engine in the vehicle is a 3.6 liter six-cylinder. Dodge gives shoppers the opportunity to upgrade to a 5.7 liter Hemi eight-cylinder engine rated at 395 horsepower if the driver demands more power out of his or her truck. The overall fuel economy rating of the base engine is 17 MPG (city) and 25 MPG (highway), and the auto has a maximum speed of 107 MPH. The max tow rating for the Ram 1500 with the V-8 engine is 10,640 lbs.

4. TOYOTA CAMRY

MSRP: $23,070

The Toyota Camry is one of the top selling cars for 2015. The auto manufacturer sold more than 392,000 of the automobiles during the year, and the well-established brand continues to be popular with consumers. The stock engine in the car is a V-4 rated at 178 horsepower. Consumers can also choose to upgrade to a V-6 rated at 268 horsepower, and a six-speed automatic transmission is stock on all Camrys. Toyota also produces a hybrid version of the car rated at 43 MPG, and the overall fuel efficiency rating of the gas powered Camry is 25 MPG (city) and 35 MPG (highway). The maximum speed of the auto is 115 MPH, and it can go from zero to 60 MPH in 7.9 seconds.

5. TOYOTA COROLLA

MSRP: $17,230

The Toyota Corolla is a very popular automobile sold today, and the vehicle is one of the top overall selling autos for 2015. The Corolla brand is well-established, and is known for being highly reliable. The stock engine for the vehicle is a V-4 rated at 132 horsepower. Although the car’s zero to 60 MPH time is a bit slow at 10.5 seconds, the auto does have a top overall speed of 111 MPH. The Corolla has been known for getting above average gas mileage for year, and its gas mileage rating is 29 MPG (city) and 37 MPG (highway). Toyota saw a 7% improvement in sales of the automobile during 2015, seeing a total of 330,887 of the automobiles sold on the market.

fly

April 22, 2016
by sportsideal
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How to Make a Round-the-World Trip—the Easiest Way

Today’s travellers may harbor an innate desire to explore faraway cultures and countries, but they can circumnavigate the easiest way—by booking a round-the-world (RTW) trip through a global airline alliance. If you’re planning an extended business trip, a long vacation, or a year off, a RTW airline fare may be just the ticket.

RTW tickets are more common than you might think. Not only are they relatively easy to book, they provide a great value compared with the total price of booking flight segments individually.

For sophisticated business travelers, a RTW trip can be a lifetime achievement, along with other road-warrior milestones, such as visiting 100 countries or flying a million miles. Savvy travelers have discovered that buying a RTW ticket for business travel can make economic sense: On an extended trip they may arrive home faster by continuing in the same direction, and they can combine business with pleasure, using stopovers for vacation time. Plus, they can earn mileage credit in any member carrier’s loyalty program—usually enough to claim a free ticket, and often enough to either gain or maintain coveted elite status.

RTW tickets can be purchased in economy, business class, and sometimes first class, depending on the alliance. Ticket prices can range from approximately $2,500 to $23,000, depending on class of service, mileage, routing, and number of stops. They typically average between $3,000 and $5,000, although a simple two- or three-stop RTW ticket might cost as little as $1,500.

Booking a RTW ticket through a global airline alliance allows you to piece together routes on member airlines to create one continuous trip. Depending on the program, fares are determined by your trip’s total miles, the number of continents visited, or the number of segments flown. You can typically stop over anywhere from three to 15 times, with tickets valid from 10 days to a year.

Where to begin? Here are some tips:

  • Start planning at least six months in advance to ensure the routes you want are available.
  • To save on costs, visit destinations in their off seasons.
  • If you fly west to east, your flights will be speedier due to tailwinds.
  • If you plan to travel extensively within a continent, you can combine your RTW ticket with an airline alliance’s regional travel passes.
  • You often can save a significant amount by originating your RTW trip in a country outside the U.S.

The alliances have various price tiers. The SkyTeam global airline alliance, for example, allows you fly up to 26,000 miles with as many as five stopovers of 24 hours or more. Fly between 29,000 and 38,000 miles, and you can stopover up to 15 times. You can plot your journey with SkyTeam’s “Round the World” planner or call a member airline for assistance.

Some airlines allow you to convert frequent flyer miles into RTW tickets, though some U.S. carriers ended this practice. Sometimes RTW tickets are discounted. SkyTeam, for instance, recently offered 10% off RTW, economy-class tickets. Check SkyTeam’s website for current offerings.

The Circumnavigators Club’s earliest members may have been limited to traveling by ship and rail, but modern-day Magellans can circumnavigate with ease by booking the seamless, value-driven flights of global airline alliances.

Breaking NBA trade deadline News-teams interested in Blake Griffin

February 7, 2016
by sportsideal
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Breaking NBA trade deadline News-teams interested in Blake Griffin

Breaking NBA trade deadline News-teams interested in Blake GriffinIn a breaking turn of events, crazy rumors surrounding Blake Griffin have emerged this week.  According to various reporters, several teams around the league have interest in adding the Clippers’ forward.  The interested parties so far include theCeltics, Nuggets, Hawks, and 76ers, but rumors indicate that other teams are also lining up to show their interest in Griffin.

It’s quite shocking that teams are interested in a 27-year old PF who has been an All-Star in every season of his career until the current one (where he’s played at an incredibly high level, but has missed time with injury.)  A guy who’s averaged 22 points, 10 rebounds, and 4 assists a game in his career, and managed to step his game up in the playoffs last season with averages of 26 points, 13 rebounds, and 6 assists, all of a sudden, is a guy that teams want. Shocking.

Here’s the thing: the Clippers don’t need to trade Blake Griffin.  The Hornets needed to trade Chris Paul.  The Nuggets needed to trade Carmelo.  The Magic needed to trade Dwight.  Those players wanted out, their teams were build around them, and the franchises were stuck between losing a superstar for nothing and starting a rebuild from scratch, or starting the rebuild with assets from a trade.  These teams took package deals for their stars that made them much worse at the time–some prospects, a handful of draftpicks, and expiring contracts.  And they started their rebuild (and it should be noted that all 3 of them are in pretty good spots right now with their new young cores).

It seems to me that many of the supposed trades presume that this is one of those situations, and it really isn’t.  Blake Griffin’s contract isn’t up.  He hasn’t asked for a trade and there’s no risk of losing him for nothing this summer.  His value is at an all-time low because of his current injury and the punching scandal, but his talent level is at an all-time high as a transcendent, top-5 talent who performed at a top-5 level both in the post-season last year and in the regular season this year before getting hurt.  You simply don’t trade someone of that talent level until he forces his way out, because there’s no way to replace that level of player.  These names being thrown out–Danilo Gallinari, Paul Millsap, Kenneth Faried, Jae Crowder, etc.–they’re all very good players.  They’re also all unequivocally less valuable than Griffin.  Top picks are good and can yield amazing talents, but Blake Griffin is one of those talents, and picks always bring with them the chance of busts.

The other reason that the Clippers’ current situation isn’t comparable with those other teams is Chris Paul.  You can’t start a rebuild while you have one of the best point guards in the history of the game under contract in his prime.  He’s another player who is simply so good that you can’t give up on him.  If the Clippers were to ever seriously entertain trading Blake, it would be a “win-now” move, where they’d add a very good starting SF and a very good replacement PF in exchange for their superstar.  They’d maximize the talent for “now”, trying to break through in the next 2-3 years while Chris Paul is still on the team.  Go look at Denver’s roster.  Go look at Philly’s.  There aren’t players there that help the Clippers more in the next 2-3 years than Blake Griffin does.  There aren’t players in next year’s draft that maximize Paul’s window more than Blake Griffin does.  It’s nothing against those players, but anyone who doesn’t recognize that is severely underrating Blake.

So, in contradiction with the sarcastic headline I typed out of annoyance with these silly reports, it’s not shocking that teams are interested in Blake Griffin.  In other news, I’m hearing that the Suns and Pistons are incredibly interested in signing LeBron for the minimum this summer, and Lakers fans would still like to trade Lou Williams and Nick Young for Russell Westbrook.

The only thing less shocking than teams like Denver and Philadelphia being interested in Blake is the fact that the Clippers are hanging up the phone when they call.

January 4, 2016
by sportsideal
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US housing starts, building permits fall in January

A U.S. flag decorates a for-sale sign at a home in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of WashingtonU.S. housing starts unexpectedly fell in January likely as bad weather disrupted building projects in some parts of the country, in what could be a temporary setback for the housing market.

Groundbreaking fell 3.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 1.099 million units, the Commerce Department said on Wednesday. Part of the decline in starts could be attributed to the snowstorms, which blanketed the Northeast last month.

December’s starts were revised down to a 1.143 million-unit rate from the previously reported 1.15 million-unit pace. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast housing starts rising to a 1.17 million-unit pace last month.

The report comes on the heels of a survey on Tuesday showing confidence among homebuilders fell in February amid concerns over “the high cost and lack of availability of lots and labor.” Builders were less optimistic about current sales.

NFL: Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals

December 24, 2015
by sportsideal
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The NFL should make notes from the NBA

NFL: Seattle Seahawks at Arizona CardinalsSeahawks safety Earl Thomas took a bit of a shot at “the shield” Sunday night when he tweeted “the NFL should make notes from the NBA.”

While it’s not 100 percent clear what Thomas is referring to, he sent the tweet shortly after NBA All-Star Weekend finished. Perhaps he wants the NFL to make its Pro Bowl event more fun for the players.

Or it could be that Thomas was just watching the NBA and thought that league provided more freedom than the No Fun League. Many criticized the professional football league this season after a multitude of silly fines like making a player pay for writing “Find the Cure” on his eye black during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Thomas’ tweet seemed to resonate with NFL fans who agree the league takes it a bit too far with the fines it levies. Still, some fear Thomas might be fined just for saying something.

Sriracha hot sauce now has an official snack line

May 30, 2015
by sportsideal
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Sriracha hot sauce now has an official snack line

Sriracha hot sauce now has an official snack lineTrue Sriracha fans are known to slather pretty much every meal in the wildly popular spicy chili sauce. But pretty soon, most of our favorite snacks will already be Sriracha flavored.

Seattle-based Pop! Gourmet Foods has teamed up with Huy Fong Foods for a new line products that are all flavored with the original spicy rooster sauce.

Pop! released Sriracha popcorn last year but that was only the beginning of a wave of new items that will have you reaching for more water.

On April 8, Sriracha potato chips will make their official debut. Soon there will be croutons, tortilla chips, hummus, and more, according to reports from Yahoo. But the true revelation will come in the form of a dehydrated Sriracha —just like the sauce, Hot Chili Spice powder can be sprinkled on anything your heart desires.

David Israel, the CEO of Pop! Gourmet Foods, says that his company has at least one major fan of the new spice mixture. David Tran, the founder of Huy Fong Foods and inventor of Sriracha, reportedly uses the spice at home. Though there are a lot of sriracha-flavored foods on the market, Israel warns consumers to be wary of imitators.

“McCormick does a Sriracha seasoning, but it’s not Huy Fong. With us, you’re getting the real deal,” the CEO told Yahoo.

Pop!’s new Sriracha infused line will be rolling out over the next few months. Prices for snacks start at $3.99.

 

The truth about tilapia

May 27, 2015
by sportsideal
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The truth about tilapia

The truth about tilapiaTilapia has risen to the top as a seafood staple on American dinner tables.

According to the National Fisheries Institute, the mild fish has climbed to become the fourth most eaten seafood in the U.S., behind only shrimp, salmon and canned tuna.

“We never intended to paint tilapia as the cause of anything bad. Our goal was to provide consumers with more information about their fish.”- Dr. Floyd Chilton, professor of physiology and pharmacology at Wake Forest

Mike Picchietti, president of Americas Tilapia Alliance, believes the fish’s popularity comes from the fact that it’s easy to farm, so it’s inexpensive and it goes down easy.

“This fish gives you a lot of leeway to farm. It’s a very hearty variety that is adaptable to different types of feed. It tastes pretty good too,” he told FoxNews.com.

It’s cheap, easy to find, and it’s fish – so it’s good for you, right?

Maybe not. There are some disturbing allegations about the fish, and one is particularly surprising: Some nutritionists have been touting a study that they implies that eating tilapia is worse than eating bacon.

Yes, bacon.

In 2008, researchers at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine released a study comparing fatty acid levels among popular fish. It found that tilapia contained far less omega-3 fatty acid than other American favorites, such as salmon and mackerel. According to the paper, salmon also has a “more favorable” omega-3 to omega-6 ratio. While both fatty acids are important, omega-3 has anti-inflammatory properties that play a critical role in brain development and cognitive function and may prevent diseases like diabetes and Alzheimer’s.

The report said that the “inflammatory potential of hamburger (80 percent lean) and pork bacon is lower than the average serving of farmed tilapia (100 g).”

That set off alarm bells among nutritionists.

The report caused further concern when it stated that farmed tilapia contains high levels of arachidonic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid that, while necessary to help repair damaged body tissues, has been linked to brain disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and may exacerbate inflammation.

Dr. Floyd Chilton, the professor of physiology and pharmacology who directed the Wake Forest study, says the comparison of tilapia to pork bacon was taken out of context.

“We never intended to paint tilapia as the cause of anything bad. Our goal was to provide consumers with more information about their fish,” Chilton said. “If your doctor or cardiologist is telling you to eat more fish, then you should look for varieties that have higher levels of omega-3 and avoid those with high inflammatory potential.”

The truth is, tilapia has as much omega-3 as other popular seafood, including lobster, mahi-mahi and yellowfin tuna. Tilapia is also very low in fat. A 4-ounce serving of tilapia has about 1 gram of saturated fat, 29 grams of protein and around 200 mg of omega-3.  By comparison, a 1-ounce serving of bacon (about 4 strips) contains 4 grams of saturated fat, 10 grams of protein and 52 mg of omega-3.

So people may not want to eat tilapia every day, but that doesn’t mean it has to be avoided altogether, nutritionists say.

“I tell my clients not to just eat one type of fish, no matter what, to reduce your risk of contamination,” says registered dietitian Melainie Rogers, founder of Balance Nutrition, a treatment center specializing in eating disorders in New York City. “Not all fish have the same fatty acid profile, but tilapia in moderation is fine. It has lower cholesterol than red meat – plus it’s easy to cook.”

So eating tilapia isn’t the same as eating bacon, but there’s another rumor going around the Internet: that farm-raised tilapia from China are fed animal feces.

A 2009 study conducted by the Economic Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture cited some alarming facts about Chinese farm-raised seafood. Researchers noted that “many of China’s farms and food processors are situated in heavily industrialized regions where water, air and soil are contaminated by industrial effluents and vehicle exhaust.” The report also stated that it “is common practice to let livestock and poultry roam freely in fields and to spread livestock and poultry waste on fields or use it as fish feed.”

The USDA report was based on documents obtained from the Food and Drug Administration, which oversees seafood inspections.

After the study was released, news organizations, including Bloomberg andMSN.com, reported the rampant use of animal feces as food in Chinese aquaculture – specifically calling out the practice on tilapia farms.

But the original USDA report did not specifically cite tilapia. Asked for comment, neither the FDA nor the USDA could confirm that it is common practice in China to feed animal feces to farm-raised tilapia.

FDA spokeswoman Theresa Eisenman said the agency was “not aware of evidence to support the claim that this practice is occurring.”

But if it is, the next question is: How much farm-raised tilapia are we eating from China? The answer is: A lot.

According to Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch, over 95 percent of tilapia consumed in the U.S. in 2013 came from overseas, and 73 percent of those imports came from China. One reason is that the fish thrives in a subtropical climate, making it a difficult fish to farm in most of the U.S.

In 2006, Seafood Watch listed farmed Chinese tilapia as “Avoid.” Senior science manager Wendy Norden and science analyst Brian Albaum at Seafood Watch toldFoxNews.com that the recommendation was due to poor food quality enforcement and high levels of chemicals, antibacterial drugs (nitrofurans) and malachite green (used to dye silk, leather and paper) in fish samples.

They said that the “Avoid” rating at that time was not due to what the fish were fed, although they did note that “in aquaculture, usually wastes from one animal are unfit to be fed to other animals.”

Today, Seafood Watch gives farmed tilapia from China a “Good Alternative” rating, due to improved enforcement of food legislation. But it cautions that the fish currently tests in the “red zone” for the presence of banned or illegal chemicals such as antibiotics, malachite green and methyl testosterone hormones used in Chinese tilapia production.

The group says tilapia raised in Ecuador, the U.S. or Canada is the best choice.

Americas Tilapia Alliance’s Picchietti told FoxNews.com that he is not aware of the practice of feeding animal feces to tilapia in the U.S., and he said he has not witnessed the practice in China. But he pointed to a 2004 paper, “Domestic Wastewater Treatment in Developing Countries,” that cites the practice of using properly treated wastewater as a sustainable, and ultimately profitable, farming technique.

So what do you do if you’re looking to avoid tilapia, or tilapia that comes from certain countries? It’s not always easy with current labeling standards.

Since 2005, country of origin labeling (COOL), which is overseen by the USDA, requires seafood and shellfish retailers to label product origins. But labeling exceptions and a lack of enforcement make it hard to know exactly what’s on your plate.

Processed seafood such as fish sticks or other prepared food sold at supermarkets and seafood retailers is exempt from labeling. Whole fish sold at grocery stores is required to have a country-of-origin label and to indicate whether the fish has been farm-raised or caught wild, but not everyone does it. The USDA conducts supplier inspections, and stores in violation have a mandated timeframe to correct the problem.

Another thing to keep in mind, especially if you’re looking for farm-raised fish fed with non-GMO feed: The USDA does not currently have guidelines for classifying seafood as organic.

Even though the FDA has consumer guidelines for buying fresh fish, the lack of basic information has some scratching their heads.

The best way to know for sure is to ask a fishmonger directly.

Freightliner SuperTruck hauls goods, sips fuel

May 11, 2015
by sportsideal
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Freightliner SuperTruck hauls goods, sips fuel

Freightliner SuperTruck hauls goods, sips fuelFreightliner has unveiled the result of its SuperTruck project, and it lives up to the name.

The tractor-trailer was developed in partnership with a five-year, $115 million Department of Energy program that challenged truck makers to improve big rig fuel economy by at least 50 percent, and match the funding by the same amount.

Freightliner did that, and more. Its loaded 65,000-pound semi returned 12.2 mpg during a real world highway test, 115 percent better than the average truck on the road today.

The SuperTruck features a hybrid drivetrain with an 11-liter diesel engine and electric motor. Most of its accessories, including the air conditioning are run off the battery, instead of belts attached to the engine. There’s a waste heat recovery system that uses the exhaust to generate additional electricity by boiling water like a power plant, and solar panels on the roof of the trailer that can fully run its climate control system on a sunny day.

The computer-controlled transmission is connected to the navigation system and can plan its shifts ahead of changes in the terrain, even shifting into neutral to coast under certain circumstances, like when it’s cresting a hill. On the way down, the electric motor helps slow the truck down and charge the battery.

And aerodynamic design also plays a key role in the SuperTruck’s efficiency. It has a laid back windshield, skirted wheels, and extenders on the side of the tractor that close the gap between it and the trailer, where the air can get very turbulent in conventional trucks. The grille automatically closes to streamline things even more, opening only when engine cooling is needed, while the suspension can lower the front of the truck at highway speeds.

A newly-designed frame and lightweight materials used throughout its sleeper cab help reduce weight, and an on-demand steering assist system only draws power when the wheels are turned.

The SuperTruck would save a typical long haul trucker around 10,000 gallons of fuel per year, which translates to over $28,000 at today’s prices, but it’s only a concept, and not destined for production as it is. However, Freightliner has already been integrating several of its features, like the smart transmission and some of the aerodynamic tweaks, into its latest products.

 

wine

May 1, 2015
by sportsideal
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How much is enough? Standard pours for wine, red and beyond

wineIs there such a thing as a standard pour of wine at a restaurant? Whether it’s cabernet sauvignon, port or ice wine, there is a standard to how much goes in your glass. So how can you tell if your server is stiffing you? Here’s your go-to guide for standard pours.

  • 1. White and red Wine

  • When it comes to red and white wine, 5-6 ounces is considered acceptable. This allows a restaurant to get approximately 4-5 glasses out of a standard 750mL bottle. Keep in mind, it may look like more or less depending on the size of the glass, even if the amount is the same. And, of course, there’s always the judgment of the server; sometimes you luck out with a generous pour, but that’s the exception, not the rule. If you’re ever dubious, just buy a bottle and try it out at home so you can eyeball it the next time you’re out at a restaurant.
  • 2. Sherry

  • This fortified wine from Andalusia, Spain, is made in a variety of styles but generally has a more powerful flavor and higher alcohol content (15-20%) than still, dry wine. As a result, the serving size for most sherries is approximately 3 ounces, less than a typical glass of dry white or red wine. While traditionally served in a glass known as a “copita,” a tulip-shaped white wine glass will work just as well.
  • 3. Port

  • Another fortified wine, this is traditionally from Spain’s Douro Valley and comes in a variety of incarnations, including ruby, tawny and late-bottled vintage. These wines are generally richer and sweeter than their non-fortified counterparts and clock in at around 20% alcohol. They are meant to be sipped and savored, and they are usually served in smaller glasses. This makes a standard pour of 3 ounces appropriate.
  • 4. Dessert wine

Whether it’s sauternes from France, ice wine from Canada or Trockenbeerenauslese from Germany, these deliciously sweet, viscous wines are usually enjoyed after dinner, paired with something sweet. Like many desserts, a little tends to go a long way with these wines, so much so that they are usually sold in smaller, 375mL bottles (vs. a standard 750mL bottle). In a restaurant setting, a pour of 2–3 ounces is considered standard for most dessert wines.

 

 

rice

April 27, 2015
by sportsideal
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This cooking method drastically cuts rice’s calorie count

ricePeople in the world’s biggest rice-eating countries are developing some of the world’s biggest bellies, but chemists in Sri Lanka say they’ve found a way to combat obesity by dramatically cutting the calorie count in rice.

The researchers say cooking rice with a small amount of coconut oil—they used a teaspoon for every half-cup of rice—and then putting it in the refrigerator can reduce digestible starch, and calories, by more than 50%, reports Popular Science.

The researchers found the method, which converts starch into a form the body can’t easily turn to glucose, cut calories more than 10% in the most fattening kind of the 38 varieties of rice they looked at, and they believe it could reduce starch by up to 60% in other kinds of white rice, ABC reports.

While obesity has long plagued the US, the professor supervising the research tells the Washington Post that “it’s becoming a problem in Asia, too. People are eating larger and larger portions of rice, which isn’t good.” The team says earlier research has shown that similar methods can reduce starch and calories in other staples like potatoes, and there’s a chance it could work for bread.

But much more research remains to be done: The scientists plan to look at other varieties of rice, as well as other kinds of oil, and Popular Science notes that it’s not clear whether the cooking method affects nutrients like potassium that are found in rice—or, for that matter, taste.

weaker wine

April 4, 2015
by sportsideal
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People think weaker wine tastes better

weaker wineDo people prefer drinking weak wine?

A new study conducted by Spanish neuroscientists at the Basque Center of Cognition, Brain, and Language, found that most people prefer think wine with a lower alcohol content tastes because it allows them to focus on the diverse flavor profiles of the beverage.

Study participants were given different samples of red wine to drink while their brains were scanned in a functional MRI machine. While they sipped, the neurologists found that when people drank the lower alcohol red wine, there was increased brain activity in the “taste processing” areas, including the insula and cerebellum, than when a wine with a higher alcohol content was consumed.

The findings support certain wine critics’ belief that newer wines from Australia and California that tend to be higher in alcohol and bolder in flavor may not be as good as “Old World” wines from France and Spain.

“The main criticisms of this “New World” (high alcohol) approach to winemaking are that these wines often lack finesse, and also that the high-alcoholic content overshadows the subtle flavors and aromas that the wine could exude,” the authors conclude. “Our findings seem to support this view… The low-alcohol content wines induced a greater attentional orienting and exploration of the sensory attributes of wines relatively to high-alcohol content wines.”

Over the past 30 years, wines have been getting more alcoholic, according to the study. Thirty years ago, most wine was about 12 percent ABV while today there are plenty of wines that hover somewhere between 14 and 15 percent ABV.

“Winemakers have been producing wines with a higher alcohol content, assuming that they are more appreciated by consumers,” the neuroscientists say. But their study found that stronger wines aren’t necessarily preferred by drinkers and may in fact hinder their ability to process nuanced flavors. Of course, the study was conducted by Spanish scientists but the study authors claim their research is unbiased.

So a strong wine may get you drunk, but that doesn’t mean you’ll like it.

Moffitt

March 30, 2015
by sportsideal
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AUTO PACKAGE: Moffitt gets 3-race deal with Front Row Racing after strong run at Atlanta

MoffittBrett Moffitt opened the year with exactly one race on his 2015 schedule, the Sprint Cup race at Atlanta as the replacement driver for Brian Vickers.

He made the most of his opportunity, finishing eighth last Sunday in a head-turning performance. Now the Michael Waltrip Racing development driver has parlayed the run into more seat time.

Moffitt on Wednesday got a three-race deal to drive the No. 34 for Front Row Motorsports starting this weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He’s also slotted to drive the next two weeks at Phoenix and Fontana, California.

“After last weekend, I’m obviously eager to get back into a car and keep racing,” Moffitt said. “I’m grateful to Bob Jenkins and his team for giving me the chance to do that. I’ll do my best to get some good finishes for them. I’m also thankful that Michael Waltrip Racing is allowing me to pursue this opportunity.”

Front Row’s seat opened when David Ragan was picked up by Joe Gibbs Racing to be the injury replacement for Kyle Busch for the foreseeable future. Joe Nemechek replaced Ragan, but Front Row worked out a deal with MWR and Toyota to get the 22-year-old Moffitt in the car the next three weeks.

Front Row is a Ford team, and Moffitt a Toyota Racing Development test driver, but both sides have been accommodating since Busch was injured two weeks ago.

“We know Brett doesn’t have a ton of Sprint Cup experience, but he’s got a lot of hours behind the wheel in testing time, and he was certainly impressive Sunday in Atlanta,” Front Row owner Jenkins said. “For only his eighth start, he showed a lot of poise, patience and maturity that you don’t often see in drivers that age.”

Moffitt ran seven Cup races last year with a best finish of 22nd at Dover in his debut. Driving for Vickers, who sat out the first two races of the year following offseason heart surgery, put Moffitt in his best equipment to date and he delivered.

“I had this one opportunity to prove myself and I think we more than exceeded the expectations,” he said this week. “It’s gotten the ball rolling on some opportunities, and that’s what I need to get in the car more often.”

MWR, which wants Moffitt to get as much seat time as possible, was pleased a deal with Front Row could be worked out.

“There has been heightened interest for Brett Moffitt’s services after his solid performance last weekend in Atlanta,” co-owner Rob Kauffman said. “While he is committed to MWR, we are happy for him to gain further valuable experience.”

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WILSON-SEBRING: Michael Shank Racing has added Justin Wilson to its lineup for the Twelve Hours of Sebring later this month.

Wilson will share the No. 60 Honda with John Pew and Ozz Negri. It’s a familiar role for Wilson, who has raced 13 other times in the Shank lineup but wasn’t part of the foursome at the season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Wilson has been teaming with Shank since 2006, but this will be his first chance to drive the new Honda-powered Ligier JS P2.

Wilson, who is still trying to secure a full-time IndyCar Series ride, has logged countless laps at Sebring while testing an Indy car. He’s also competed in three previous 12 Hours of Sebring. He was not part of a recent Shank test, but knows the team is ready.

Shank won the pole for the Rolex in January.

“Everyone at Michael Shank Racing has been working so hard to be ready for Sebring,” said Wilson. “It seems like a big break between the 24 and Sebring, but they’ve been at it nonstop. The test was really productive for them so we’ll have a good bit of data to start with when we head down there.”

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IMS-SUNOCO: Sunoco has reached an agreement to continue as the official fuel of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the IndyCar Series.

Sunoco’s relationship with IndyCar dates to 1968 in Riverside, California, when Mark Donohue drove the No. 12 Sunoco Eagle for Penske Racing. That same team of Penske, Donohue and Sunoco won its first Indianapolis 500 four years later.

The new deal announced this week also calls for Sunoco to maintain its support of IndyCar’s young stars as title sponsor of both the Sunoco Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year and the Verizon IndyCar Series Rookie of the Year awards.

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ALL-STAR SCHEDULE: The All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Car Series, recently purchased by three-time NASCAR champion Tony Stewart, on Wednesday announced a 54-race season schedule.

The schedule spans six states and will stage 29 of its events in Ohio and 14 in Pennsylvania.

Stewart completed his purchase of All Star Series right before its February opening of five non-points events. Races counting toward the season-ending championship begin in late March at Atomic Speedway in Waverly, Ohio.

“The schedule we put together for the 2015 All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Car Series is filled with great venues on a timeline that works well for our participants,” Stewart said. “Our first five events in Florida went off extremely well and we look forward to carrying that momentum into Ohio with our first point-paying race at Atomic Speedway.”

tequila

March 30, 2015
by sportsideal
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The next Fireball may be a sweet tequila

tequilaFireball Cinnamon Whisky has taken over bar culture in recent years—with huge sales and a massively broad appeal.

This alcohol that tastes like Big Red gum may be hot right now but Sazerac, the company behind the now iconic brand, knows that when it comes to shots—you may be on fire one day and fizzle out tomorrow.

Enter its newest release. Tijuana Sweet Heat is another “shot-focused” product made from  gold tequila and agave nectar, which is brings it’s total ABV down to 35 percent, versus straight tequila which is usually around 40, reports Drink Spirits. But the product bottle is somewhat misleading, stating Sweet Heat is “Infused With 100% Agave Nectar” which may lead consumers to believe this is a pure agave tequila—not in fact a liqueur.

So what does this sugary tequila actually taste like?

“Sweet agave syrup is quite clear right from the start and it’s complemented by white pepper, bell pepper, dill, and roasted agave,” say the tasters at Drink Spirits. “On the palate Tijuana Sweet Heat is very sweet.”

The thick, syrupy consistency may be turnoff for traditional tequila fans, but with hints of cinnamon, and a little bit of spice, Sweet Heat seems to be following in the tradition of its popular predecessor and could be a “revelation” for millennials looking for the next great shooter.

The liqueur is supposedly “everything that a shot brand needs to be: it’s sweet, easy to shoot, with enough flavor to feel like you aren’t just shooting pure sugar and alcohol and enough rounding of the alcohol that you can quickly take another shot.”

And that’s just the formula Sazerac is hoping for.

Tijuana Sweet Heat retails for $15.99 and  will be rolling out in select markets through May.

Will Chipotle ever serve seafood

March 15, 2015
by sportsideal
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Will Chipotle Ever Serve Seafood?

Will Chipotle ever serve seafoodFrom crispy fish tacos to spicy grilled shrimp, seafood has become a mainstay of Mexican restaurant offerings.

And as people look for more health conscious options, it would seem to be a natural leap forward for fast casual chains to add a fresh catch or two to their menus.

So does mean we’ll be seeing a salmon burrito from Chipotle?

Not likely, says the chain.

“Seafood is difficult in our case because we don’t have freezers and it doesn’t hold very long unless it’s frozen,” Chris Arnold spokesman for Chipotle, told Business Insider.

And unlike many fast food chains– think Taco Bell and McDonald’s which constantly seem to be adding new products– Chipotle believes in sticking to the tried and true.

“Maintaining a really focused menu lets us do the things we do really well,” Arnold said, reiterating that a key part of their model was keeping things simple.

Chipotle, which opened in 1993, has kept its same basic menu for nearly two decades—only adding a few items like the vegan Sofritas tofu protein.

Other Mexican food chains like Taco Bell and Rubio’s Fresh Mexican Grill have experimented with fish in the past. In 2010, Taco Bell introduced Pacific Shrimp Tacos and Rubio’s still serves fish tacos today.

But for Chipotle, which is known for its antibiotic-free, natural raised meats, staying true to its mission of “food with integrity” comes at a cost.

Early this year, the chain experienced a shortage of its pork carnitas. A third of its restaurants stopped serving pork after the company discovered that its suppliers were not meeting its standard for raising animals.

Looks like fisheries have a difficult road ahead if they want to be Chipotle’s next suppliers.

 

race

March 3, 2015
by sportsideal
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Hamlin’s pass, Gordon’s blunder allow Joe Gibbs racer to claim fifth victory at Martinsville

raceDenny Hamlin passed teammate Matt Kenseth for the lead with 28 laps to go Sunday and went on to end Toyota’s 32-race winless streak in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Martinsville Speedway.

The driver for Joe Gibbs Racing held off a five-lap, bumper-to-tail challenge from Brad Keselowski for his 25th career victory and his fifth at the smallest and oldest track in the premier series.

The victory also came after a terrible blunder by four-time series champion and eight-time Martinsville winner Jeff Gordon. He took the lead for the first time with 58 laps to go and then got caught entering pit road too fast when the 16th and final caution came out with about 40 laps to go.

“Wow. I’m sorry guys,” he said on the radio. “That’s on me. I apologize.”