Rapper engages in activism through music

first_imgFrom its roots in the Bronx in the 1970s til now, hip-hop and rap music has had its finger on the pulse of social issues in the United States. From Public Enemy calling to “fight the power” in inner-cities in the 1980s to Kendrick Lamar’s expression of what it means to be black in America in “To Pimp a Butterfly” and Run the Jewels’ songs of protest against police brutality, social activism has been at the heart of this genre.Monday night, in the Carey Auditorium of the Hesburgh Library, Aisha Fukushima, a “rap activist” or “RAPtivist,” explored the ability of hip-hop and rap to act as a catalyst for change and explained how her background led her to a career in activism. Fukushima also performed a few recently released songs.Fukushima said her unique upbringing contributed to her early political views and allowed her to witness the power of music.“I grew up as a multiracial child, both African-American and Japanese heritage, and for me, that looked liked living in Seattle, Washington, as well as Yokohama, Japan,” Fukushima said. “I think at this early age, I started to see how global music was. That pulse of music to be able to travel around the globe. No matter where you’re performing … I didn’t know the word solidarity yet, but I was feeling that through music.”When she spent time back in the United States, Fukushima said that she first experienced the racism that would later help inform the civil rights message she would later advocate.“I was one of very few students of color in the entire school,” she said. “We had our tires slashed over 17 times. There were different seeds of hatred and discontent that would manifest sometimes in actions like that, even in my local community.”Fukushima said one avenue through which she was able to express her feelings about discrimination was through writing poetry, which she could share with her high school classes. Fukushima found that students were more likely to listen to her concerns through this medium. This experience led her towards rap, a genre that she believes there are many misconceptions about, she said.“Often times, we get the booty, bling, bullets and sometimes bourbon,” she said. “Part of my experience in traveling around the world and connecting with hip hop activists — whether they be locally or globally — there is more to the hip-hop identity than this single story.”Fukushima said that the activist roots of hip-hop are come from the Bronx.“People used the phrase, ‘The Bronx is burning,’ to describe [the 1970s] because the landlords figured out they could acquire more money by burning down buildings and collecting insurance money than through the rent,” she said. “Hip-hop was born out of this place. Hip-hop was, in many ways, a response to the destruction that was going on.”Fukushima said that this activism was not limited to the United States and cited the impact of the Senegalese rapper Didier Awadi.“He created an album, ‘Presidénts de l’Afrique,’ talking about the different African leaders he didn’t see outlined in any of his textbooks,” she said. “He traveled the continent of Africa for 10 years collecting archival materials, speaking to the families who were still alive, and putting that into an album and music videos.”Recently, Fukushima’s own activism has centered around helping the people of Flint, Michigan. “One of the issues that compelled me to speak out was Flint, and the water crisis there that has recently reached 1000 days of them not having access to clean water,” she said.Recognizing the severity of this crisis, Fukushima recorded and released a music video about the situation in Flint with all proceeds helping the residents of the city.Fukushima also advocated for restoring parts of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy.“A lot of time King gets boiled down to single stories — whether he is a martyr in his death or we celebrate him and his non-violence [or] we just focus on the work he did around segregation and bus boycotts,” she said.  “But people tend to leave out the narrative about the last year of his life … Around this time, he spoke out against the Vietnam War [and]he started to speak out about three main pillars … he wanted to talk about racism, militarism and policy.”Fukushima ended by advocating to engage in social activism, citing Cornel West’s idea that “justice is what love looks like in public.”Tags: #Aisha Fukushima, activism, MLK, raplast_img read more

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Syracuse downs No. 30 Virginia Tech, 5-2, for 1st ranked win

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ After falling out of the ITA team rankings this week, Syracuse (9-1, 2-1) picked up its most important win of the season to date as it beat No. 30 Virginia Tech (8-1, 1-1) at Burrows-Burleson Tennis Center in Blacksburg. SU’s 5-2 win marks its first victory against a ranked opponent this season.SU’s Sofya Golubovskaya and Anna Shkudun opened up second doubles with a 6-1 victory against Sarah Baron and Elena Cerezo-Codina while Masha Tritou and Dina Hegab fell to VT’s Nika Kozar and Nina Sorkin, 3-6, in the third slot.The No. 19 pairing of Gabriela Knutson and Miranda Ramirez earned SU the doubles point as they fought off Caroline Daxhelet and Natalie Novotna to win, 7-5, on a double-fault.With an early point to the scoreboard, Golubovskaya cruised to a 6-0, 6-3 victory against Cerezo-Codina to give SU its second point of the match in third singles.After Dina Hegab made light work of Sorkin in the sixth slot, 6-4, 6-1, Shkudun rallied from a disappointing second set in fourth singles to outlast VT’s Kozar, 6-0, 1-6, 7-5, and clinch the match for Syracuse.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textDespite a second set rally, Syracuse’s Libi Mesh fell to Katherine Butler in the fifth slot, 3-6, 6-3, 4-6, to give VT its first point of the match.At second singles, Ramirez fell behind 3-5 in the first set, down a break, and came back to force a tiebreaker. After evening up the tiebreak at 12-12, Ramirez gave up two consecutive points to lose the set, and ultimately lose the match to Daxhelet, 6-7 (12-14), 1-6.The longest match of the day featured SU’s No. 18 Knutson and VT’s No. 61 Novotna with ITA ranking implications on the line.Knutson fell behind in the first and second sets but forced tiebreakers in both. In the first set, Knutson took the tiebreak 7-5, but faltered in the second, 3-7, to lengthen the match to a third set. She took the third set with ease, 6-3, to win 7-6 (7-5), 6-7 (3-7), 6-3 and give Syracuse its fifth point of the day.Syracuse hopes to build on its six-match winning streak as when it takes on No. 1 North Carolina on Sunday in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Comments Published on March 2, 2018 at 6:20 pm Contact KJ: [email protected] | @KJEdelmanlast_img read more

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Windies Women eager to prove ODI strength – Cooper

first_imgPORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, (CMC):West Indies Women batsman Britney Cooper says the Twenty20 World Cup champions are out to prove they can also be a force to be reckoned with in the 50-overs format.The 26-year-old, who played a key role in the women’s capture of the T20 title in India last month, said the Caribbean side had already turned their attention to next year’s 50-overs World Cup scheduled for England.”A lot of people feel the West Indies team only knows how to play T20 cricket but it is much more than that,” Cooper said.”I believe we have an opportunity to show all the world that we’re not only a World Cup T20 side but we can also play one-day [cricket]. We’re hoping when we go to England next year that we can bring home another championship back to the Caribbean.”The triumph in the T20 World Cup was their first ever in that format but the women have already strung together some impressive performances in past 50-overs World Cup.In fact, they were good enough to reach the final of the last tournament in India three years ago, when they lost to Australia Women by 114 runs.improving battingCooper, whose career-best unbeaten half-century against New Zealand Women in the semi-final put the Windies Women in the T20 World Cup final, says she was focused on improving her batting in order to strengthen the ODI unit.”I don’t see myself as a T20 player. I really want to find myself higher up the order in the one-day team,” she said.”I bat at five, six sometimes so one day I hope that I can be batting at number three for four, or even opening the batting for West Indies.”Cooper made her debut in 2009 and has since played 31 ODIs and 46 T20s.The Women’s Cricket World Cup is scheduled for June 26 to July 23 next year.last_img read more

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Oh buoy! Huge marker washes up in Donegal

first_imgA marine buoy has made an incredible transatlantic trip to reach North Donegal – two years after it went missing off the US coast.The large marker was discovered on Saturday at the Bloody Foreland by local teen Padraig O’Donnell.Marine buoy found at Bloody Foreland, Gaoth Dobhair. Photo Padraig O’DonnellIntrigued by his find, the 15-year-old set about investigating where the buoy came from. And his emails to the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries led to even greater discoveries.Scientists were amazed to learn that the buoy had travelled all the way to Ireland – some 3,500 miles away. It was originally used to mark the location of an artificial reef off Ocracoke Island before it broke away from its mooring. Artificial reefs are constructed to protect habitat for fish species and signified by bright yellow buoys.Marine buoy found at Bloody Foreland, Gaoth Dobhair. Photo Padraig O’DonnellThis marker had been missing for at least two years, according to the Artificial Reef Coordinator in North Carolina. Other staff with the Division were fascinated by the fact that the buoy had travelled so far through the Gulf Stream to Donegal.That’s quite the souvenir! Oh buoy! Huge marker washes up in Donegal was last modified: May 7th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Bloody ForelandbuoyGweedorelast_img read more

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Warriors sending Napier, Graham to Minnesota after acquiring them in Russell deal

first_imgIn yet another move to trim their salary and maximize their ability to round out their roster, the Warriors dealt Shabazz Napier and Treveon Graham to the Minnesota Timberwolves less than 24 hours after acquiring both players in a sign-and-trade deal with the Nets.The reason for the short-tenure for the Warriors? Simple. The Warriors acquired Napier and Graham so that they could land D’Angelo Russell as a center piece of a sign-and-trade deal with Brooklyn following Kevin Durant’s departure …last_img read more

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Jay Baer on Hugging Your Haters and the Real Value of Stellar Customer Service – Episode 53

first_imgPodcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 42:17 — 38.8MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | Email | Google Podcasts | RSS“For years, customer service has been a necessary evil.” That’s what Jay Baer says, but he’s convinced that even though it’s never been true, it’s especially not true in the digital age. Customer service is the lifeblood of truly impacting businesses. During this conversation Anthony asks the kind of questions that unpack the gold of Jay’s new book, “Hug Your Haters” and shows you why keeping customers through outstanding customer service is tons more important that getting new customers. After listening to this episode you won’t think of customer service the same way again.For generations, customer service has been seen a necessary evil ~ Jay BaerClick To TweetWhy Haters are not necessarily going to hate forever.You’ve heard the pithy little meme – “Hater’s gonna’ hate.” But is it always true? Jay Baer believes that most people who you might classify as a “hater” on social media these days are simply voicing their opinion about the reality of their experience with your company, and resigning yourself to a statement like that could also resign you to failure in business. In this episode Jay explains how companies NEED to respond to haters no matter what, and how they can do so in a way that is a win for the business in every case. It sounds like a lot to promises but Jay delivers, on this episode of In The Arena.Why you should fix your customer service before you get more customers.If it sounds backwards to you that you should fix your customer service before getting more customers, that’s because you fall squarely into what current statistics reveal: that most businesses spend far more on marketing and sales than they do on customer service. Jay Baer believes that’s a colossal mistake because it’s much easier and wiser to keep the customers you’ve already reeled in, then it is to go out and get new customers. And by keeping them happy AS your customers, they are going to have a huge impact on whether or not you get those new customers you want so badly. It’s more to unpack that one paragraph can do, so be sure you listen to Jay’s explanation on this episode.If it’s out there on the internet, and you don’t respond, it’s true by default ~ Jay BaerClick To TweetWhich channel should you use for customer service?There are so many ways for you to communicate with your customers and for them to communicate with you – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. – which one should you use to address customer service issues? Jay Baer believes that the answer is obvious: Use the ones your customers prefer to use, which will not be the same for every customer. This idea comes from Jay’s explanation of “on stage” and “off stage” complaints and how each of them has to be handled in different ways in order to magnify the value your business places on the customer. If you don’t understand, you will – and you’ll agree entirely – if you listen to this episode of In The Arena.What happens when you respond to customer complaints?Do you really know? Jay Baer says that more happens than just averting a disaster or fixing a problem. The research he did while writing his new book, “Hug Your Haters” revealed that in EVERY CASE responding to customer complaints resulted in a huge uptick in customer satisfaction (which you would expect) and ALSO a huge increase in customer advocacy (which you may not have expected). So when you respond to your customer’s complaints promptly, with care, and with an eye to solve their problem to their satisfaction, you not only make a friend, you make an ally. Find out more of what Jay has discovered about stellar customer service, on this episode.If you answer a complaint, it increases customer advocacy. Every. Time. ~ Jay BaerClick To TweetOutline of this great episode Anthony’s introduction to Jay Baer and the conversation in this episode. Why Jay stopped doing his “Jay Today” show (and how Anthony felt about it). Jay’s definition of “a hater” (from his book “Hug Your Haters”). How Jay proved in his book that customer service is not happening well overall. The gap between what the company believes their customer experience is like, and what it really is. Why companies ignore customer complaints. Why you should fix your customer service before you get more customers. Where is the proper customer service channel (to your customers)? What are “off-stage” haters and “on stage” haters – and why they matter. The risk for business that don’t respond to “on stage” haters. Business improvements for those who respond to their customer complaints. The “high care” and “low care” approaches to business. What is the downstream impact of your customer service choices? What Jay is reading right now. The most important book Jay has ever read. The person who’s had the biggest influence on Jay. The most important lesson Jay has ever learned. If Jay wasn’t doing what he does, what would he be doing? What Jay wants to be remembered for.Our Sponsors:Jeffrey Gitomer Sales Gold – use the code “Anthony” to receive your discount.Sales Gravy University – tell Jeb that Anthony sent you.Resources & Links mentioned in this episodeJay’s websites: www.JayBaer.com and www.ConvinceAndConvert.com110198067200624003630399170626The theme song “Into the Arena” is written and produced by Chris Sernel. You can find it on SoundcloudConnect with AnthonyWebsite: www.TheSalesBlog.comYoutube: www.Youtube.com/IannarinoFacebook: https://www.facebook.com/iannarinoTwitter: https://twitter.com/iannarinoGoogle Plus: https://plus.google.com/+SAnthonyIannarinoLinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/iannarino Tweets you can use to share this episodeThe balance of power has changed. Customers can now tell others how terrible you are ~ Jay BaerClick To TweetHug Your Haters with Jay Baer, on this episode of In The Arena with Anthony IannarinoClick To TweetSubscribe toIn the ArenaApple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsAndroidby EmailRSSOr subscribe with your favorite app by using the address below Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Nowlast_img read more

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Finally finished: Cavs-Celtics modify, complete big trade

first_imgKammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Concerned with medical findings after looking at Thomas’ injured right hip, the Cavs have negotiated another draft pick from Boston to compete the mega-deal that stalled, the teams announced in a joint statement early Thursday.The teams modified the original deal and Cleveland will also get a second-round pick in 2020 from the Celtics, a pick it acquired from Miami.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“The trade is now complete,” the teams said in their statement.After days of uncertainty, both sides can move forward toward a 2017 season that will start with the Cavs hosting the Celtics on Oct. 17. After the teams finalize the deal with the league, the Cavs are expected to formally announce a trade that officially ends Irving’s star-crossed tenure in Cleveland.The former No. 1 overall pick grew into one of the NBA’s biggest stars with the Cavs, and he’ll always be remembered for making the go-ahead 3-pointer over Golden State’s Stephen Curry in Game 7 of the 2016 NBA Finals when Cleveland won the title — the city’s first major pro sports championship since 1964.But while he was adored by Cleveland fans, Irving struggled playing in the shadow of LeBron James, and shortly after the Cavs were beaten in this year’s Finals by the Warriors, a disgruntled Irving demanded a trade.He’s joining a Boston team that has been chasing Cleveland in recent years, and he’ll play alongside Gordon Hayward, signed as a free agent by the Celtics this summer.Thomas’ future is not as certain. The 5-foot-8 playmaker was beloved in Boston, but he’ll have to share the stage in Cleveland in a supporting role to James. Thomas is in the final year of his contract and could end up sharing playing time with newly signed Cavs guard Derrick Rose.And, of course, there’s always drama surrounding James, who will try to make his eighth straight Finals before possibly opting out of his contract next summer and hitting the free-agent market again.If he leaves, the Cavs have the first-round pick — maybe even the top pick overall — they got from Boston to help them rebuild.But that’s next summer. For the moment, this chaotic one has finally calmed down. View comments Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC SEA Games conclusion sees early start to celebrations UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief Read Next MOST READ FILE – In this June 7, 2017, file photo, Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving (2) is guarded by Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) during the first half of Game 3 of basketball’s NBA Finals in Cleveland. Irving gets his new address and Isaiah Thomas gets to play with LeBron. They both can say they won in this Celtics-Cavs blockbuster deal. But the sum of the parts says Cleveland got the better of Boston in this swap of All-Star point guards. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane, File)CLEVELAND — The blockbuster trade, delayed and in jeopardy of dying, is done: Kyrie Irving is headed to the Celtics, Isaiah Thomas is coming to the Cavaliers and the NBA can take a well-earned, late-summer break.For a minute.ADVERTISEMENT Lacson: PH lost about P161.5B tax revenue from big trading partners in 2017 PLAY LIST 03:46Lacson: PH lost about P161.5B tax revenue from big trading partners in 201700:50Trending Articles01:17DTI to cemetery goers: Buy candles and bottled waters in grocery stores, supermarkets01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games LATEST STORIES Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH The teams had a deadline of 10 a.m. Thursday to agree on the trade, which was prompted by Irving demanded to be dealt in July. New Cavs general manager Koby Altman pulled it off by sending the team’s second-best player to the Celtics for Thomas, forward Jae Crowder, center Ante Zizic and an unconditional first-round pick next year.The Cavs had balked at pushing the Aug. 22 trade through last week after Thomas underwent a physical. He tore a labrum last season in the playoffs against Cleveland, and it’s possible he might not be ready for the start of the season.On Tuesday, Thomas told ESPN he is “not damaged” and believes he will return to All-Star form.“There’s never been an indication that I wouldn’t be back, and there’s never been an indication that this is something messing up my career,” Thomas said. “Maybe I am not going to be back as soon this season as everyone wants me to be, but I’m going to be back, and I’m going to be the same player again. No doctor has told me anything different than that.”Thomas decided not to have surgery and has been rehabbing his hip this summer.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Gameslast_img read more

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The Amazing Longevity Of Jaromir Jagr

It’s not often that a player is still a desired commodity days after his 43rd birthday, but that’s precisely what Jaromir Jagr, who was traded from the New Jersey Devils to the Florida Panthers on Thursday, appears to be.Despite recent frustrations over his playing time with New Jersey, Jagr could prove to be a useful short-term rental for the Panthers. He retains the same soft hands and keen vision that made him a five-time scoring champion. And like so many of hockey’s greatest offensive talents before him, Jagr has a knack for skating where the action is headed before it arrives. His trademark strength seems scarcely to have waned with time; he still has moments when he’s nearly impossible to knock off the puck along the boards.Jagr is by no means the player he once was. But it’s improbable enough that he is still a player at all, still part of the league more than 24 years after his NHL debut. He had been 81 days older than the league’s second-oldest active player — St. Louis Blues goaltender Martin Brodeur — but then Brodeur up and retired last month. Now, no current player was born within 25 months of Jagr.Of course, more than perhaps any major sports league, the NHL has had a place for ancient players. Three and a half decades ago, Gordie Howe — then the NHL’s all-time scoring leader — famously skated through a full 80-game schedule that concluded a week after his 52nd birthday. More recently, Chris Chelios was still manning an NHL blueline at age 48. And just last season, Teemu Selanne played at an age seven months older than Jagr is now. So it’s not quite unprecedented for Jagr to still be around at age 43 — and counting.But Jagr’s past few years have surpassed what just about any other NHL player has ever done in his dotage. Despite posting the leanest traditional numbers of his long career this year (more on that later), Jagr is1As of late last week. in the midst of the seventh-best adjusted point shares above replacement (PSAR)2A modification of the Hockey-Reference.com metric that assigns goaltending worth according to Tom Tango’s wins above replacement and re-allocates the remaining value such that forwards receive 60 percent of league PSAR in a given season, defensemen get 30 percent and goaltenders receive 10 percent. season by any skater aged 43 or older3As of March 1 of the season in question. since the NHL’s Original Six era began in 1942-43. What’s more, he was better last year: No non-goalie aged 42 or older has ever had more PSAR in a season than Jagr’s 6.9 in 2013-14.Plus, there’s a strong case to be made that the conventional stats — and the next-level metrics based off of them, such as PSAR — have undersold Jagr’s contributions to the Devils, particularly this season.As marvelous as they are for a player his age, Jagr’s basic numbers this year haven’t been eye-popping by the standards of other forwards logging as much ice time. In 53 games, he’s notched a modest 11 goals and 18 assists to go with a -10 plus-minus rating. (As a point of comparison, if Jagr had played to his career per-game averages, he’d already have 25 goals and 37 assists by now!) According to PSAR, which synthesizes box-score stats into a single-number representation of value, it’s been his worst season ever — and by no small margin. The 18-year-old rookie version of Jagr had 3.1 PSAR in 1990-91, after which he wouldn’t put up fewer than 4.9 PSAR in a single season again — until this year.Hockey’s recent statistical revolution, however, has brought with it more sophisticated ways to gauge a player’s contribution to his team. Its biggest lesson? That although goals and assists are great, there’s also a big advantage in simply helping your team keep possession of the puck.And as it so happens, Jagr is still one of the best players in the league at that.Over the past two seasons, Jagr’s Devils haven’t been an especially strong hockey club. They rank 24th in both point percentage4In the wacky world of the NHL’s standings, some measure of sanity can still be salvaged by dividing a team’s standings points by the total number of points handed out in its games. So, for instance, the winner of a regulation game would earn 2 out of 2 total points; meanwhile, the winner of a shootout would get 2 out of the 3 total points awarded, since the loser would also get 1 point. Among other things, this has the advantage of preserving a .500 record as the mark of an average team. and goal differential during that span, and while the team has undeniably been plagued by poor shooting and save percentage luck, they’ve also posted relatively unimpressive possession rates — except when Jagr is on the ice. With Jagr, New Jersey plays like one of the premier possession teams in hockey5The Devils’ zone start-adjusted 5-on-5 Fenwick percentage with Jagr on the ice would rank third in the NHL over the past two seasons.; without him, they play like one of the worst.Studying Jagr’s game, it’s not hard to see why this is the case. Although his stride — never the fastest even in his prime — is noticeably sluggish these days, he makes up for it with sheer hockey sense, constantly scanning the ice for passing opportunities or chances to extend possession by corralling loose pucks. Perhaps more importantly, he remains the master of shielding the puck with his 6-foot-3-inch, 240-pound frame, creating scoring chances for himself and others by cycling possession deep within the offensive zone.“I know … my strength,” Jagr recently told NHL.com’s Dan Rosen. “I like to play [in the] offensive zone on the boards. I still feel like I’m strong enough to beat anybody, [or] at least hold that puck. … Maybe I’m not going to beat that guy one-on-one like I used to, but I can still make a play from that corner from the cycle. That’s my strength. And in the playoffs, that’s the way you play.”This is why, with the NHL’s trade deadline approaching, Jagr was mentioned as a legitimate option for contending teams looking to upgrade their offense — particularly with the man advantage — before the playoffs begin. Ironically, it seems that as the league increases its emphasis on possession, Jagr’s value has only been heightened even as his goals and assists have receded with age. And for Florida, barely clinging to the hope of a playoff berth but with clear upgrades to be had on the power play and in advanced metrics, Jagr might be a good fit.On the other hand, what does it say about the state of the NHL in 2015 that a plodding 43-year-old future Hall of Famer could change a team’s postseason chances?Like many things in hockey, it’s a question that leads back to Howe. In the foreword to Howe’s (excellent) new autobiography, the great defenseman Bobby Orr marveled at Howe’s longevity: “Today, if a player cracks the top five in scoring in the NHL, he’s considered a star. Do it a couple of years in a row and you’re a superstar. … Well, Gordie Howe did it twenty years in a row. That’s right — twenty. How do you begin to do justice to a legacy like that?”It was undoubtedly an impressive run for Howe, but — counterintuitively — the ability of a man in his 40s (and even 50s) to still dominate a professional sports league might speak as much about the quality of play around him as to his own athletic gifts.In 1968-69 — the final year of the streak to which Orr referred — a 40-year-old Howe was nearly the best player in hockey, finishing second only to 26-year-old Phil Esposito in PSAR. And in his final season more than a decade later, Howe was serviceable enough to be a regular contributor. But the NHL of that era also underwent an enormous amount of upheaval between expansion, the emergence of a rival league (the World Hockey Association), and the influx of new talent (and a fresh playing style) from Europe.In some ways, the chaos of the 1960s and ’70s provided the perfect cover for an aging megastar such as Howe to keep his career rolling. We can see this in the percentage of total NHL PSAR going to various cohorts of skaters, grouped by age, over time:The 1960s saw the NHL’s first expansion since the Great Depression — marking the end of the Original Six era — and they also coincided with a major uptick in the production of older players, one that would not fully abate until the early 1980s. In addition to Howe, players such as Alex Delvecchio, John Bucyk, Jean Beliveau, Frank Mahovlich and Jean Ratelle all produced great seasons in their late 30s (and beyond).The present day also appears to be a haven for the comparatively superannuated. Starting in the early to mid-1990s, the fraction of league value produced by the oldest batch of NHL players swelled to levels not seen since the 1970s. While that proportion has decreased a bit today relative to its peak in the immediate aftermath of the NHL’s lost 2004-05 season, it remains higher now than at any point between 1974 and 1996.So Jagr’s longevity, impressive as it is, might also be a symptom of ongoing weaknesses in the state of pro hockey itself. Is it mere coincidence that the uptick began right when the NHL’s aggressive expansion plans of the 1990s were fully realized? Or that it lasted through the so-called Dead Puck Era and well into the post-lockout “New NHL“? It’s not clear.But regardless of where Jagr sits in the intersection between the NHL’s health and the twilight of his once-immense (and still formidable) skills, he remains a player to which attention is owed. The Panthers are picking up more than a living legend playing out the final act of his career — they’re nabbing a player who still offers many of the little advantages that could make a difference along the journey to the Stanley Cup. read more

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Emails reveal notsofine print

On Monday, Ohio State revealed more email correspondence between Jim Tressel and Columbus lawyer Christopher Cicero, the man who alerted the football coach of possible violations by players, which Tressel has since acknowledged he failed to disclose to OSU and NCAA officials. The previously undisclosed emails contain advice from Cicero to players involved with Eddie Rife, the owner of Fine Line Ink tattoo parlor. “My suggestion is to tell (names redacted) (and any other current player) who has had contact with him (Rife), that if they are approached in person, by phone, by “target” letter, by any person in law enforcement, tell them that BEFORE they talk to anybody, or respond to anybody that they MUST contact you first… especially if some stupid media would get ‘wind’ of this… ok. Chris,” Cicero said to Tressel in an email on April 16, 2010. Cicero also suggested that Tressel advise his players to speak to the coach if anyone questions them about the matter involving Rife, who was under a federal investigation for drug trafficking charges. Tressel responded to Cicero three days later, asking if he had any more information on names associated with the selling of the 2008 Big Ten Championship rings. Tressel also hinted that he had a “plan” regarding the 2009 Big Ten Championship rings that had yet to arrive. “Is there a way I could get all the ring names…I have a little plan once this year’s rings arrive….jt,” Tressel wrote. Cicero responded a day later. He said an agent of the district attorney involved with the Rife case had the rings sold to Rife. “Thanks!!” Tressel responded. More than a month had passed without another email from Cicero. On June 1, Tressel emailed Cicero asking if he had any more names from the rings that had been sold. Tressel told Cicero the 2009 Big Ten Championship rings were arriving that week. “Any names from our last discussion ?? I would like to hold some collateral if you know what I mean….. jt,” Tressel said in the email. Cicero responded later that day, indicating that the two names he provided before were “still good.” Cicero informed Tressel that communication between himself and the district attorney had ceased and that no more names had surfaced. OSU said the emails released Monday, which had been detailed in a Columbus Dispatch article, were “inadvertently omitted” from the initial email release on March 8. OSU also acknowledged receiving a formal list of allegations from the NCAA on Monday. The NCAA sent a letter addressed to President E. Gordon Gee explaining the current state of the investigation. OSU is expected to respond to the NCAA’s request by July 5 and a meeting is then set for Aug. 12. In an interview with ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” on March 13, Cicero confirmed he mentioned quarterback Terrelle Pryor and wide receiver DeVier Posey while informing Tressel of his players’ involvement with Rife. In an email to The Lantern, Cicero said: “I gave an ESPN interview in March 2011, with Chris Spielman where I gave a taped interview answering every question posed to me. It is the only interview I am giving on this matter.” Five Buckeyes, including Pryor, Posey, offensive lineman Mike Adams, running back Dan Herron and defensive lineman Solomon Thomas are suspended for the first five games of the 2011 season for selling memorabilia and receiving improper benefits. Cicero played football at OSU under coach Earle Bruce, and graduated in the spring of 1984. He lettered his senior year. In an email Tressel sent to Ted Sarniak, a 67-year-old business man from Jeannette, Pa., who befriended Pryor many years ago, Tressel seemed to vouch for the Columbus lawyer. Sarniak accompanied Pryor on his recruiting trips to OSU and other universities as a mentor figure for the young athlete. Tressel explained to Sarniak the relationship between Cicero and the university. “This guy, Chris Cicero, is a criminal lawyer in town,” Tressel said in the email. “He played here when I was an assistant coach in the early 1980’s. He has always looked out for us.” read more

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Mens soccer plays to scoreless draw with Northwestern

Junior forward Kenny Cunningham (17) fires a shot in a game against Northwestern Oct. 20 at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. The two teams tied, 0-0. Credit: Eric Seger / Sport editorThree of the last four matches for the Ohio State men’s soccer team (2-6-5, 0-2-2) have been against ranked opponents, and after a scoreless draw with the No. 16 Northwestern Wildcats, all three resulted in ties.OSU played to a 0-0 tie with then-No. 17 Louisville Oct. 2, and tied then-No. 18 Michigan State 1-1 Oct. 13.Buckeye redshirt-junior goalkeeper Alex Ivanov recorded seven saves in Sunday’s match and earned his fifth shutout of the season. He is now tied with Penn State keeper Andrew Wolverton for third place in the Big Ten Conference for shutouts.Ivanov said the shutout was a good confidence booster moving into the last four games of the regular season.“Trying to keep the team in the game at all times is my job,” he said. “It’s good when we get a clean sheet for the defense, we’ll just have to keep moving forward and building on it.”Ivanov now has 80 saves in 12 games, keeping him in first place in the conference.Both teams were successful in creating scoring opportunities throughout the match, but neither was able to capitalize or find a way to get the ball in the net. The Wildcats outshot the Buckeyes by a total of 20-14 and led the OSU in corner kicks, 7-5.Despite the tie, Buckeye coach John Bluem said the team will walk away feeling like this game was a loss because it played well and had a lot of scoring opportunities throughout the game.“You just keep waiting for (a shot) to go in, somehow, for us and we felt like we deserved to win a game like this because we’ve been in so many of them, and it’s been kind of a rough stretch,” he said. “The guys’ attitudes are great and we are grinding away at it. If we can find a way to produce some goals we might make something happen this year.”Missed opportunities have been a continued trend this year for the Buckeyes. The trend continued on OSU’s second attempt of the second overtime when sophomore midfielder Zach Mason blasted a shot wide of the goal from outside the box with just more than five minutes left in play.Mason said after the game that despite the missed opportunities, the results of the last few games proves to the team that it can compete with anybody.“We’ve known (we can compete) all along, but these are results that are showing it on paper, so I think this is only going to boost our confidence and maybe get some wins in the next few games,” he said. “I think we will try and push each other in training and try and have some fun with it too. It can’t all be serious because it’s a game and we want to enjoy it. I think the last two games have shown that we’ve kept our spirits up and are still fighting to the end.”The Buckeyes have a break from in-conference action as they prepare to take on Oakland Wednesday and Cleveland State Sunday, before finishing off the season with games against Penn State and Wisconsin. read more

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