Mar 8th, 2012 by dmack
12 teams reportedly in the hunt for Manning … Where’s the new Peyton’s Place ???
ESPN’s Adam Schefter is reporting that just hours after Peyton Manning’s release, 12 of the NFL’s 32 teams have contacted Manning reps about his services. The Cardinals, Seahawks, Broncos, Dolphins, Redskins, Titans and Jets have openly made overtures with five team preferring to remain under-the-radar for the time being. Manning has made it clear that he would prefer to remain in the AFC but is open to switching conferences if the situation was right.
Where will Manning go ??? Miami, Kansas City, and Arizona would appear to be the front runners. With Manning on the market, free agency (which begins at 4:00 PM EST on Tuesday) will in effect be held hostage with little movement until the first domino falls. Manning and his people have said that he would like to have found his new team within a week.
Three more teams won automatic bids by winning their respective conference tournaments. Long Island beat Robert Morris in the Northeast Conference final. The Blackbirds are now 16-0 at home. Lehigh won the Patriot with an 82-77 win over Bucknell and the Montana Grizzlies blew out Weber State in the second half to win the Big Sky. Other big winners on Wednesday were UConn, Stanford, and South Florida. The Huskies locked up their bid with the win as the defending champs and having played the #1 strength of schedule. Stanford and South Carolina are on the bubble and still might have work to do. Wednesday’s big losers were Seton Hall who won’t have far to travel in the NIT. West Virginia will have to hope that favorites win at out in the big six conferences for them to have a chance at an at large bid.
Russell Westbrook had 31, Kevin Durant had 30, James Harden had 30 and Serge Ibaka had 18 points and 20 rebounds as Oklahoma City punked Phoenix 115-104. The Thunder improved to 16-1 on their home floor. Lebron, Wade and Bosh were the last to pull off 30-30-30 last year. Speaking of the Heat, they won their 11th straight at American Airlines Arena beating the Hawks 89-86. There were three buzzerbeaters in the NBA last night. Derrick Rose’s off-balance 20-footer beat Milwaukee 106-104. The Nets edged the Clippers 101-100 with a triple from the right wing with 0:2 left on the clock. Kyrie Irving’s driving layup with four seconds left sealed the deal against Denver. The Lakers lost for the seventh time in ten road games blowing a 21-point lead in a 106-101 loss to the Wiz. Philly spanked Boston as the Celtics are now 0-7 SU and ATS in their last seven back ends of back-to-backs. Toronto crushed Houston, Utah beat Charlotte, and Minnesota punched out Portland behind 29/17 from the Love machine. The Knicks lost their fourth straight roadie to the Spurs, Sacramento edged New Orleans, and Memphis pummeled the Warriors at Golde State in a busy night in “The Association”.
In the NHL, with basically 15 games left on everyone’s schedule, it’s dog eat dog for the final reamining playoff off spots in the East and the West. In the East, the Rangers and Penguins have strangleholds on the top two seeds. With Sid the Kid returning on Sunday, look for the Pens to make a run at the Rangers. Pittsburg is currently six back and the Rangers have a game in hand. Boston and Florida have three point division leads over Ottawa and Winninpeg. The Sens, Flyers and Devils look to be safe and are playing for first-round home ice. In the West, St Louis has taken a two point lead on the Red Wings in the Central Division, Vancouver is a point back of the Blues but a lead pipe cinch in to win the Northwest. Nashville and Chicago are playoff bound. Just three points seperates Dallas, Phoenix, San Jose, and LA in the Pacific with the winner the only likely playoff entry. Dallas has the edge here with 36 wins, three more than Phoenix, wins being the first tie-breaker.
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Free plays were a disappointing 1-2-1 after getting hooked with Toledo. There were plenty of “3′s” out there which is why it is so important to be able to shop for the best number. A half point difference in even a handful of games over a season could be the difference between a profit and a loss.
(CBB) Washington -4 over Oregon State (3:00 PM EST)
(CBB) Clemson -3.5 over Virginia Tech
(CBB) Utah State -3.5 over La Tech
(NBA) Chicago -6 over Orlando
(NHL) Bruins/Sabres Under 5.5 -125