Sunday, July 24, 2011

Are YOU ready for some Football?

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Friday, June 18, 2010

Making Yourself Successful

I’ve always been a firm believer that “luck” is something you create. I’m not necessarily talking about making your own “luck” by winning the lottery. Winning a drawling doesn’t require much luck at all it’s a random selection where as making your own “luck” is doing everything in your power to make your self successful.

When I decided to try and find a career that interested me I didn’t have to look very far. Sports were my passion and I knew I was extremely knowledgeable about that profession.

I thought to myself “What separates me from these guys on ESPN, CBS, Fox Sports, or even the local beat writer for the minor league hockey team?” I knew just as much about the topics they were talking about, the plays they were breaking down, the teams they were analyzing. Why did they have such positions of power? How could I try and duplicate what they were doing only being a Florida Gulf Coast University student?

I quickly reached out to the Florida Everblades, a minor league hockey team near my university and became the right hand man to the broadcaster and public relations manager.

I learned a great deal of things while I was apart of the Everblades and took pride in the work I completed while I was with the organization. One thing was clear to me after my experience in the sports industry. That was it wasn’t something I wanted to be apart of. As a kid I remember watching the movie “Jerry Maguire” and the famous line “show me the money.” I soon learned sport was only about one thing… the money.

After that experience, I learned that I enjoyed writing and reporting about games, players, and teams a lot more than being the guy working the in’s and out’s of a franchise. But I thought to myself “Why the heck are people going to want to read my evaluation over professionally written and published work?”

I was unsure what to do until a friend of mine told me “Jeff, why don’t you start a blog? It would be great for your portfolio.”

Eureka! Why didn’t I think of that in the first place! Some downsides to that were, I knew very little about blogging, social media, and advertising. But never the less I gave it a whirl.

The day everything changed. My Public Relations Strategies class was having a guest presenter about social media. He owned his own company that managed other company’s websites, showed them how to increase traffic, and to be able to easily update statuses on facebook, twitter, linkedin,, and many more with one click of the mouse. I was hooked and quickly began to search for more knowledge on this topic.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

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Thursday, June 3, 2010

2010 NBA Finals Preview

The Los Angles Lakers host the Boston Celtics tonight in yet a rematch for the NBA Championship. Two seasons ago the Celtics led by Paul Pierce (08 Finals MVP) dominated the Lakers in six games for their 17th title in franchise history.

This time around the Lakers are not taking the Celtics lightly. Los Angles has something going for them this time around that they didn’t before. A healthy Andrew Bynum who should provide quality minutes in hopes of slowing down Boston center Kendrick Perkins. Ron Artest has also been added to the mix for the Lakers as they will need him to come up with big stops on the defensive side of the floor.

If the Celtics keep receiving timely production off the bench from Rasheed Wallace, Nate Robinson, Glen Davis, and Tony Allen they could easily win this series.

The Lakers will have to rely on Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol as their bench isn’t as deep as their opponents.

Prediction: Boston in 6

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Magic Top Celtics 113-92, Extend Series to Six

The Orlando Magic took care of business for the second consecutive game winning 113-92. The victory extends the Eastern Conference Finals to a game-six this Friday in Boston. The Celtics will try and close out a series they led three games to nothing heading into game-four.

The past two contests the Magic have received great production from Dwight Howard, Jameer Nelson, and J.J. Redick. Rashard Lewis is beginning to look more comfortable after suffering through a viral infection earlier in the series.

Only four teams of the top professional sports leagues (NHL, NBA, NFL, MLB) have ever battled back from a 3-0 series deficit. Boston fans should be worried because they recently saw the Bruins lose grip of a 3-0 series lead to the Philadelphia Flyers in the NHL Eastern Conference Finals.

The city of Boston was also on the winning side of being down three games to none. The Red Sox came back to beat the New York Yankees in the 2004 AL championship series.

To add insult to injury Glen Davis suffered a concussion after being struck indecently by a Dwight Howard elbow early in the third quarter. Just before Davis was injured, Celtic starting center Kendrick Perkins was given two technical fouls that were both questionable. If the technical fouls are not overturned by the league, Perkins will have to sit out game-six.

The momentum has moved in favor of the Orlando Magic. Be sure to tune this Friday, May 28, 2010 at 8:30 P.M. to catch more of this great playoff action.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Orlando Magic Try to Hold off Elimination

Recent news trickling out of Orlando is small forward Rashard Lewis has had a viral infection and could be to blame for his recent struggles this series against the Boston Celtics. He is expected to start game-five in Orlando but had said he’s not sure how it will affect his play.

"Overall it effects you," he said after Orlando's shootaround Wednesday. "I've been throwing up. I haven't been at full strength. I've been feeling weak, my legs been feeling weak. I find myself getting tired very fast in the first quarter. You know, when you can't hold food down you have no energy in your body to go out there and perform."

Magic point guard Jameer Nelson and company finally decided to show up in game-four on Monday night winning the contest 96-92 in OT. Orlando staved off elimination making the series 3-1 in favor of the Celtics. Nelson finished with 23 points and made two key three pointers in overtime to help the magic to their first victory of the series. Magic center Dwight Howard had a double-double with 36 points and 17 rebounds but went a dreadful 6-14 from the charity stripe.

The Magic will have to start game-five with the high pace tempo they previously displayed in game-four. The Boston Celtics and have made the Magic’s three-point shooters uncomfortable this whole series.

Both teams’ benches will play a major role in how this game will be decided tonight. If J.J. Redick and Mickael Pietrus play well off the bench the Magic they will be in position to win. However, if Tony Allen and Glen Davis play well for the Celtics off the bench it could be the final home game at the Amway Arena for the Orlando Magic and fans.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Leighton blanks Canadiens again as Flyers take 3-1 lead

Michael Leighton doesn't have time to reflect on his latest shutout. He is focused on a much bigger objective now that the Philadelphia Flyers are one win from the Stanley Cup Finals.

Much like his team, Leighton bounced back from his worst performance this postseason. He stopped all 17 shots he faced in a 3-0 win over the Montreal Canadiens in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals on Saturday.

For Leighton, the journeyman who was claimed by the Flyers on waivers in December, it was his third shutout in this series. He is 5-1 since taking over after Brian Boucher was hurt in the second round.

The Flyers, who have won seven of eight since falling behind Boston 3-0 in the previous round, lead the Canadiens 3-1 and can advance to the finals for the first time since 1997 with a win at home in Game 5 on Monday.

"I'm not really concerned about shutouts right now, I'm concerned about winning," Leighton said. "That's not really on my mind. If we would've won 5-1, I would have been just as happy."

The smiles were back on the Flyers' faces as they bounced back from a 5-1 loss in Montreal on Thursday. They delivered on a vow to channel their frustrations and disappointment into one of their most dominant defensive outings of the playoffs.
"I can tell you that we didn't play a very good game last game, and it was a kick in the teeth," coach Peter Laviolette said. "Our guys responded with a better effort."

Laviolette's understated response didn't reflect how dominating the Flyers were, particularly in the second period when they outshot the Canadiens 13-1. Philadelphia grabbed the lead when Claude Giroux and Ville Leino scored on breakaway goals nine minutes apart. Giroux then sealed the win with an empty-netter.

"We've been a team that's been able to recover from tough defeats like that all season long," defenseman Chris Pronger said. "A quick look in the mirror and understand what you need to do, and we were all able to rally together and play well as a team."

Now the question is whether the eighth-seeded Canadiens can engineer another comeback from a 3-1 series deficit to get to the finals for the first time since 1993. Montreal dug out of such a hole in the first round and knocked out Presidents' Trophy-winning Washington.

"Confident? I mean, it's a familiar feeling for us," leading scorer Mike Cammalleri said. "We seem to play our best hockey in this situation. Here we go again."

They'll have to play much better because the Flyers beat them in most puck battles and flustered Montreal. That prevented the Canadiens from generating many rushes through the neutral zone.

"We just didn't execute. We got impatient and got away from doing that," forward Brian Gionta said. "I think the second period is where we got away from our game. We tried pressing a little too hard and that's when you get away from your game plan."

The second period proved to be the difference.

Giroux opened the scoring 5:41 into it by streaking past defender Josh Gorges at the left circle, driving to the net, and lifting a shot to beat goalie Jaroslav Halak on the short side. Gorges was caught flat-footed and slowed because he was having trouble with his skate. A piece of equipment hung off it.

Leino made it 2-0 by sneaking in behind the Canadiens' defense on the transition. Flyers defenseman Chris Pronger broke up a play at his blue line and hit Leino on the fly up the left wing, while Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban was caught up ice. Leino cruised in, faked going wide, and then slipped the puck just inside the near post.

The Canadiens mustered nothing. Their only shot came 13:34 into the frame on Maxim Lapierre's snap shot from the left boards, which Leighton blocked.

The Canadiens' one shot in the second period matched a playoff franchise low done twice before, most recently in a 5-2 win over Boston in April 1994. The Pittsburgh Penguins were the last team to do it, during their Game 7 win over Detroit in last year's Stanley Cup Finals, according to STATS LLC.

"I thought we had to be better as far as our execution," Cammalleri said. "I don't know exactly what the reason is for it but our execution wasn't there in the second period."

Leighton had a relatively easy day after allowing five goals on 38 shots on Thursday. He opened the series by stopping 58 shots in 6-0 and 3-0 wins at Philadelphia. He became the 13th NHL goalie to have three shutouts in one series, and the first since Toronto's Ed Belfour and Tampa Bay's Nikolai Khabibulin did it in the first round of the 2004 postseason.

Leighton's best string of saves came during a scramble with 2:25 left. After stopping Marc-Andre Bergeron's hard shot from the right circle, Leighton kicked out his left pad to foil Lapierre, who had two chances to stuff in the rebound. Travis Moen also got off a shot, but a sprawling Leighton somehow prevented the puck from crossing the line.

"For quite some time now this team has always answered a challenge, and they've always answered a bell," Laviolette said. "But, again, before we leave this rink we need to dismiss it, get rid of it, and start focusing and getting ready because there's just too much at stake."