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Predictions for Saturday’s Divisional Round Games

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The real playoffs kick off this weekend in the NFL with two Divisional Round games today and tomorrow. I call these the real playoffs because the Wildcard is essentially teams that usually don’t deserve to make the playoffs competing to see who is going to lose in the Divisional Round to a better opponent. However, that is not always the case and I believe it will not be the case for one of the Wildcard winners this weekend. Here are my predictions for the Saturday’s games:

Falcons @ Eagles – 4:35 PM on NBC

It’s not very often that you see a number 1 seed in any playoffs be the underdog against a 6 seed but that is exactly what we have in this matchup. The Eagles were an impressive 13-3 in the regular season and for that reason earned a first round BYE and home field advantage throughout the playoffs. However, the loss of their star quarterback Carson Wentz is looming large and is the main reason that the Falcons are 2.5 point favorites. Many pundits don’t have the Eagles standing a chance in this game, however they are forgetting that they still have the runningback duo of Jay Ajayi and Legarrette Blount. The Eagles were third in the NFL this season in rushing, averaging just over 132 yards per game. That combined with the fact that the Eagles do have arguably the most capable backup quarterback in the NFL in Nick Foles gives the Eagles a chance to hang with the Falcons. But they will not be able to keep up with the rapidity of the Falcons offense led by Matt Ryan and Julio Jones, who combined for a big week in the Wildcard round last week. Prediction: Falcons 34 – Eagles 24.

Titans @ Patriots – 8:15 PM on CBS

Tom Brady is 25-9 in his NFL playoff career and has had yet another excellent season, leading the Patriots to the 2nd best passing offense in the NFL. He had an NFL-best 32 passing touchdowns in comparison to just 8 interceptions which is really incredible when you think about the fact that the Patriots haven’t had one of their leading receivers Julian Edelman all season long. On the other side of the coin you have Marcus Mariota. Mariota just played in his first career playoff game last week throwing for 2 touchdowns including one to himself. However, he has a much taller task ahead of him today if his Titans are going to come out on top in a game in which they are currently 13.5 point underdogs. If the Titans are going to win this game today, it is going to be because of the run game. The Patriots ranked in the bottom half of the NFL in run defense in the regular season and they are susceptible to the big play. For this reason, I think the Titans will be able to hang around in the first half. But as the Patriots always do, they will make adjustments at halftime and come out dominating in the second half. Prediction: Patriots 41 – Titans 17

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Nike Releases Exclusive Golden State Championship Epic React

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The Golden State Warriors are now a Dynasty after winning their third NBA Championship in four years.

Nike has commemorated the championship with exclusive Epic Reacts for the team. The Flyknit footwear that will never be released to the public.

This special edition Nike Epic React Flyknit bears the regal colors of white, gold, and black with the Larry O’Brien trophy hangtag and custom insoles. Just 37 pairs were made in sizes ranging 9-18 exclusively for the Warriors organization, and you might’ve caught Andre Iguodala wear them during the parade.

 

 

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Kyrie Irving Turns Down Contract Extension With Boston

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Brian Babineau

Kyrie Irving was the biggest summer team addition in 2017.

Irving can sign a max of a four-year, $101 million deal with the Celtics this summer. According to ESPN’s Chris Forsberg, Irving does not plan sign any contract extension.

Irving is set to make $20 million dollars during the 2018-2019 season. He also has a player option for 2019-2020 that would pay him $21 million dollars. Boston have the Bird rights for Irving, which would allow Boston to go over the salary cap to sign Irving.

Irving holds the cards in this situation. If he leads the C’s to a championship he could demand a max contract that will pay him $200 million. If Boston decides not to resign Irving their are teams lining up to pay him.

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Lebron James Set To Produce Documentary For HBO

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LeBron James production company SpringHill has been hard at work behind the scenes, while James was in the NBA Finals. The company announced that James will produce a new documentary on HBO called Student Athlete.

The doc will look into “the complex rules of amateur athletics in America,” and also “how they affect uncompensated athletes and their families.”

Maverick Carter, LeBron James he said:

“This is an incredibly important story about the institutional denial of basic human rights for these student-athletes. When Steve Stoute [at United Masters] brought us this idea, it was a perfect fit for the kind of stories we want to tell at SpringHill.”

Stoute said that the idea behind the documentary is to show the NCAA’s hypocrisy:

“The NCAA blinded by revenue goals is turning student athletes into full-time employees. This documentary is incredibly important as it debunks the myth that student athletes are being fairly compensated by receiving scholarships and a valuable education. In fact, the demands put on these students by this oppressive system makes it impossible for them to get the education they deserve. The time is now to end this false narrative and reveal the truth of this exploitation.”

Back in February, James responded to the FBI investigation into corruption throughout college basketball, James said the NCAA is a “corrupt” organization.

“The NCAA is corrupt, we know that,” he told reporters. “Sorry, it’s going to make headlines, but it’s corrupt.”

James also discussed the argument that student-athletes get a free education for playing sports:

“I don’t know all the rules and regulations about it. But I do know what 5-star athletes bring to a campus, both in basketball and football. I know how much these college coaches get paid. I know how much these colleges are gaining off these kids. … I’ve always heard the narrative they get a free education. But you guys aren’t bringing me on campus to get an education. You guys are bringing me on it to help you get to a Final Four or to a national championship.”

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