3 Retired Numbers of the OHL’s Sudbury Wolves

The Ontario Hockey League franchise that is now known as the Sudbury Wolves has been firmly planted in that Northern Ontario city since the 1972-73 season. The franchise started out as the Barrie Flyers in 1945 and moved to Niagara Falls to become the Niagara Falls Flyers in 1960.

Since moving to Sudbury, the team has been to the Robertson Cup finals just twice and has yet to win an OHL championship. Probably the greatest year in Wolves history came in 1975-76. The team was first overall, winning the Hamilton Spectator Trophy, and made it to the Robertson Cup finals before losing out to eventual Memorial Cup champions, the Hamilton Fincups.

The Sudbury Wolves have retired just three jersey numbers between 1972 and the present. All three played on that 1975-76 Wolves team. All three went on to lengthy National Hockey League careers with two of the three playing over 1,000 games in the NHL.

Randy Carlyle wore number 6 during his three years with Sudbury. The defenseman played with the Wolves from 1973-74 to 1975-76. In that final season, he totaled 79 points from the blue line in 60 regular season games.

The Toronto Maple Leafs liked what they saw and selected Carlyle in the second round of the 1976 NHL Amateur Draft. Randy played 1,055 regular season games in the NHL between 1976-77 and 1992-93 with the Maple Leafs, Pittsburgh Penguins and Winnipeg Jets. In 1980-81, as a member of the Penguins, Carlyle was awarded the Norris Trophy as the NHL’s top defenseman.

Randy pretty much went right into a coaching career after retiring as a player. He won a Stanley Cup as head coach of the Anaheim Ducks in 2007 and is currently the head coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

While Carlyle was watching the blue line, number 10 Ron Duguay was providing offense. In 1975-76, Duguay totalled 134 points on 42 goals and 92 assists in 61 games. Ron’s 92 assists were mostly helpers on Rod Schutt’s 72 goals. Both the 92 assists and 72 goals remain today as team single season records. What is baffling is that Sudbury has not retired Schutt’s number, as well.

Ron Duguay played four years with Sudbury from 1973-74 to 1976-77. After his final season, the New York Rangers selected him thirteenth overall at the 1977 NHL Amateur Draft. Duguay played nearly 900 regular season games in the NHL between 1977-78 to 1988-89 with the Rangers, Detroit Red Wings, Pittsburgh Penguins and Los Angeles Kings.

Number 17 Mike Foligno was in his rookie season with Sudbury in 1975-76 but was still a major contributor to the team’s success. Foligno played four years with the Wolves from 1975-76 to 1978-79 and captained the team in his final season. In 1978-79, Mike scored 65 goals and assisted on 85 for 150 points. The point total remains today as a Sudbury Wolves single season team record.

Mike was the third overall pick at the 1979 NHL draft, going to the Detroit Red Wings. Foligno was drafted behind only Rob Ramage and Perry Turnbull and came ahead of Hockey Hall of Fame members Mike Gartner, Ray Bourque and Mark Messier. Mike played just over 1,000 regular season games in the NHL between 1979-80 to 1993-94 with the Red Wings, Buffalo Sabres, Toronto Maple Leafs and Florida Panthers.

Foligno returned to Sudbury for the 2003-04 OHL season and remained as General Manager and Head Coach for seven seasons. In 2006-07, he led the Wolves to their second appearance at the Robertson Cup finals. This time, it was the Plymouth Whalers that denied Sudbury a trip to the Memorial Cup.

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IPTV: How It Is Changing the Sports Broadcasting Industry

Watching your favorite sports event used to mean two things only: buying tickets to see the game live and waiting for it to be broadcast on television. Things have changed nowadays as sports fans now have a better option in the form of IPTV or Internet Protocol Television.

IPTV is a broadcasting method that makes use of Internet lines to deliver video feeds. It does not rely on a browser in order to function. Instead, an IPTV provider connects a decoder box to your television for you to be able to view videos. The videos are given to you online and in real-time. The only important requirement for you to enjoy IPTV service is a high-speed Internet connection (specifically high bandwidth broadband).

How IPTV Works

To receive IPTV content, you will need to have a set-top box or an IPTV box. This box is connected to your television source or Internet line/broadband. The box receives packets that it reassembles so that the video stream is decoded into an acceptable format.

The set-up box is like the menu or the basis for what a viewer wants. An «operator» gets content from producers and broadcasters and this is what is converted in to the IPTV video format.

A high-speed Internet connection is essential in making sure that the packets are received without disruption or delay.

What It Can Offer Sports Fans and Broadcasters

In the past, it was quite difficult to follow a game’s progress if you are stuck in traffic or swamped with tons of paperwork in the office. Today, IPTV has made it possible for sports broadcasters to deliver games whenever and wherever. Viewers are given three options as to how they want the content given to them. Linear or Broadcast TV allows for live streaming of games and sports events. VoD or Video on Demand enables users to choose what they want to watch and how they want to watch it. They can pause, forward or rewind the video. This way, they’re sure to catch every breathtaking moment of their favorite sports games. IPTV users can also choose to use their personal video recorders whenever there’s a match or sports event that they want to record.

Here are other IPTV advantages that both sports fans and broadcasters can enjoy:

  1. IPTV broadcasts are in high-definition so it’s definitely a higher quality experience compared to traditional TV viewing technologies.
  2. Unlike satellite TV, IPTV is not easily affected by storms and other similar weather disturbances. For sports broadcasters, this means uninterrupted delivery of sports events in the easiest way possible. For sports fans, this is equivalent to unparalleled excitement when watching their favorite sports events.
  3. Greater interactivity compared to traditional broadcast TV means users can control what programs to watch and even when to watch them (via VoD).
  4. Viewers are more into the program or game because of the interactivity feature. For instance: they can use their remote to vote for their favorite player of the game. IPTV gives them an opportunity to be part of the most important sports events.
  5. Sports fans can use the camera selection feature when watching games or events. This offers a more personalized way of viewing videos.
  6. For sports broadcasters, streaming live games, matches and events becomes easier and more convenient. IPTV also offers more opportunities for lesser known sports like kayaking and sculling to be exposed to the viewing public.
  7. Sports teams and broadcasters can also use the medium for extra revenue and fan reach through advertising and promotions. Broadcasters can even dedicate one channel to a specific sport – like mountain biking or rugby. Football and sports stadiums in the UK now use IPTV to bring games to larger audiences when they happen and as they happen.

IPTV also works on smartphones, iPods and personal computers. Because of this, sports broadcasters are assured of wider exposure and fans get uninterrupted viewing of video content coming from different parts of the world.

Conclusion

Internet Protocol Television has made sports broadcasting more exciting. Sports broadcasters now have more options (in terms of creativity) in bringing their content to the public. It offers them more choices in getting and sustaining the attention of sports aficionados. It is the perfect choice of broadcasters in delivering live games to those who may not have the time or the means to buy tickets and watch the game personally. Best of all, IPTV presents a lot of opportunities for broadcasters to encourage people to embrace sports as a fan, a follower or as an aspiring athlete.

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League of Legends – A Great Free Online MOBA Game

League of Legends is a pretty recent introduction to the free online MOBA game world. Still it brings with it some amazing features that are quickly propelling it towards the title of #1 free online MOBA game. In terms of mechanics it is very similar to other MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) games. However a combination of constant updates, exciting customizable options, and truly free game play really sets it apart from the competition.

Like many other free online MOBA games, League of Legends splits players into two teams. Each player picks a unique champion and then the two teams face off against each other on a virtual battlefield. The goal is to push your way through your opponents defenses and destroy their nexus. This is done by earning gold from killing minions and enemy champions to buy more powerful items. Games typically last between 20-40 minutes and end in one team destroying the other teams base.

As stated above the premise in League of Legends is similar to the other MOBA games available. However unlike those games the developers for League of Legends are constantly working to make their game better. They release weekly patches with small balance changes that help move the game towards being perfectly fair. They also develop and release a new champion every 3-4 weeks, which helps keep the game from getting stagnant. Perhaps one of the funnest things they do are the seasonal changes. During holidays like Christmas the developers change the map slightly so that it is themed for the holidays. It really helps you get into the spirit of the holidays while playing League of Legends. Small things like these really set League apart from it’s competitors.

League of Legends also offers every player a variety of options which help them customize each character to fit their play style. For example each player can equip runes and masteries before each game which allow them to boost certain traits they really want in their character. Players also earn gold in each match which they can use to buy items which boost their abilities even further.

Perhaps the one thing that truly makes League of Legends the best free online MOBA game available is it’s free! That’s right, League of Legends is 100% free. You purchase everything that affects the game using influence points (IP) which you earn while playing. If you feel like spending some money you do have the option of buying neat new looks (skins) for your characters, but no player will gain an unfair advantage from spending more money than someone else.

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English Premier League’s Most Shocking Moments

With the announcement on Friday that Alex McLeish was set to take up the vacant managerial role at arch rivals Aston Villa, we take a look at some of the other controversial moments within the history of the English Premier League.

McLeish to Aston Villa from Birmingham City

Following victory over overwhelming favourites Arsenal in the League Cup, McLeish subsequently suffered a terrible run of form in the Premier League resulting in his Birmingham team getting relegated on the last day of the season. Although the board confirmed that he would keep his job, McLeish sent his resignation by email on June 12th amid rumours that he was set to join Aston Villa a role which he accepted 5 days later even though there were huge protests from Villa fans.

DiCanio pushes referee

During a game between Sheffield Wednesday and Arsenal in 1998, Di Canio saw red in both senses of the word. An altercation between Di Canio and Arsenal’s Martin Keown led to referee Paul Durkin showing the former the red card. Di Canio, in a fit of rage pushed referee Durkin, who fell to the ground in an almost comical fashion. Di Canio was subsequently fined £10,000 and received an 11 match ban.

David Busst injury

Arguably the most horrific injury the English Premier League has seen, Busst was playing for Coventry City against Manchester United in 1996 when he collided with United players Denis Irwin and Brian McClair, resulting in extensive compound fractures to both the tibia and fibula of his right leg. The horrific image led to Manchester United keeper Peter Schmeichel vomitting on the pitch. Busst’s career was over but he has stayed in the game with Coventry City as Director of Football in the Community.

Kieron Dyer & Lee Bowyer fight on the pitch

A true «handbags» fight kicked off during Newcastle’s 3-0 defeat at Aston Villa in 2005. Both players appeared in a press conference after the game with then Newcastle manager Graeme Souness to apologise for their behaviour but they pointedly did not apologise to each other

Robbie Fowler white line celebration

After scoring for Liverpool in the Merseyside derby against Everton, Fowler used the white line of the penalty area to simulate snorting cocaine as his goal celebration. This was in reference to the accusations of drug abuse from a faction of Everton fans. Fowler ended up with a £60,000 club fine and a 4 match ban for his antics.

Gallas protest

After Arsenal threw away a 2 goal lead against Birmingham in 2008 after Gael Clichy conceded a stoppage time penalty Gallas promptly sat in the centre circle and didn’t move. It was only when Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger consoled him did he leave the field of play. Some people say that he was acting like a spoilt child but the general consensus is that his actions showed how much he cared about the club. 18 months later he moved to North London rivals Tottenham.

Adebayor goal celebration

After a summer move from Arsenal to Manchester City, Adebayor played for the first time against his former club at The City of Manchester Stadium at the start of the 2009-2010 season. The 4-2 victory for Man City was marred by Adebayor who, after scoring his goal ran the length of the pitch to the away end full of Arsenal fans and proceeded to goad them with his celebrations nearly inciting a riot.

Cantona kung-fu kick

Probably the most controversial moment in English Premier League history was when Eric Cantona leapt into the crowd at Crystal Palace and performed a kung fu kick on one of their fans who had been goading him as he walked to the tunnel after being shown the red card. For his actions he was fined £20,000, issued with 120 hours of community service and was banned from playing for the remainder of the season.

Campbell going to Arsenal

Sol Campbell was for many «Mr Tottenham» during the 1990’s, a tremendous defender and club captain. In 2001 after being awarded a contract which would have made him the highest paid player in the club’s history, Campbell switched allegiances and moved to arch rivals Arsenal on a free transfer. This of course caused uproar as he had stated in the Spurs magazine weeks earlier that he would never play for Arsenal. 10 years on and Spurs fans still regard him as «Judas» and he is still regarded as one of the biggest traitors in Premier League football.

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10 Reasons Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo Are Not the Greatest of All Time [GOAT] in Football

For the best part of the last decade, two names have dominated world football (soccer) more than any others; Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. These great rivals have broken countless football records, scored insane number of goals and pushed each other all the way to greatness despite the fact that they are two very different football players, playing two very different styles in two very different roles for two different clubs. The only thing that really connects the two is the ocean of ability that separates them from the rest of the players in the world. There can be no question as to whether the duo belongs in the pantheon of football all-time greats anymore. Although any effort to determine the greatest footballer of all time is subject to generational bias, it should be noted that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are not individually or collectively the greatest football player[s] of all time due to the following reasons;

Cristiano is not the best ‘Ronaldo’ to play the game: Despite his unparalleled achievement in and off the field of play, Cristiano Ronaldo is still not considered the best Ronaldo to have played the game. Ronaldo de Assisi (also known as Ronaldinho) and Ronaldo de Lima (the phenomenon) are the other ‘Ronaldos’ whose legendary attacking prowess is often compared to Cristiano Ronaldo’s. Ronaldo de Lima was a more explosive and complete striker who would have probably been the ‘World’s Best Striker Ever’ if he had stayed injury-free in his footballing career, while Ronaldinho was the entertainer who, at his peak, constantly wowed the footballing world. Cristiano Ronaldo is better than other ‘Ronaldos’ in terms of constituency over the years, phenomenal goal-scoring rates, overall fitness and prolonged career (due to low rate of injuries) but for sheer skill, explosiveness, superior technical ability, and the ‘wow’ factor, the two ‘Ronaldos’ are better than Cristiano Ronaldo.

Lionel Messi is not the best ever Argentine player: It is a well-known fact that for a footballer to be the best ever in the world, he has to be the best ever footballer in his country and sadly, Lionel Messi isn’t both. Lionel Messi is not the best football player Argentina has produced. That honor goes to Diego Armando Maradona. Maradona (widely regarded as one of the best football players ever) is a footballing legend that inspired Argentina to a world cup victory and S.S.C. Napoli (in the Italian Football League) to its first and second League title [Scudetti] in its history. He is the scorer of the world’s most dubious goal (the ‘Hand of God’ goal) and the FIFA Goal of the Century. There is virtually a cult around the player in Argentina. Diego Maradona (and Pele) is the benchmark for the illustrious South American nation when a new star comes on to the block. So, while Messi has dazzled on the European stage, passing milestone after milestone and picking up loads of awards, his countrymen regard him as the country’s second best football player ever.

Both players have never won the World Cup: Although the latter rounds of the modern-day UEFA Champions League would rival the FIFA World Cup in terms of quality, with talents from around the globe increasingly concentrated in the hands of an elite few, the World Cup still retains substantial symbolic value as a quadrennial competition which pit the best of one nation against the best of another. It is no secret Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have never won (or inspired their respective countries to win) the FIFA World Cup. Cristiano Ronaldo has won an European Cup (The Euros) with his home country, Portugal but has never been to the semi-finals or the finals of the World Cup while Lionel Messi was underwhelming in the 2014 world cup semi-final and final with his home country Argentina eventually losing to Germany. The World (and Messi) was shocked when he was named the best player and awarded the Golden Ball of the tournament. Lionel Messi is also a three-time runner-up in the Copa America competition with Argentina. Most football players such as Zinedine Zidane, Pele, Diego Maradonna, Ronaldinho, Ronaldo de Lima etc. often touted as the world’s best ever football player all played dominant roles in the World Cup tournament they eventually won. The same cannot be said presently of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

They are not Football’s best Goal-scorers ever: Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are efficient, effective and phenomenal goal scorers boasting amazing goal per match ratio but they aren’t among the five best goal scorers in football history. Neither of them have scored up more than 700 goals in their respective careers so they cannot be in the company of great players such as Pele, Romario, Josef Bican, Ferenc Puskas (he has a FIFA goal-scoring award named after him), Gerd Muller. The rate of scoring of these legendary players is more impressive than that of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo given they ended their footballing careers with goal tallies well into the 800s. So if scoring goals are what makes footballers great, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, having better players boasting better goal tallies ahead of them, cannot be the greatest footballers of all time.

Both players have been accused of being criminals: They both have tax payment issues with the Spanish authorities (the country they reside and play in) and so have been accused of being criminals. After a lengthy trial that attracted so much publicity due to his status as a supremely gifted sportsman, Lionel Messi (and his father) was found guilty of not paying his taxes to the Spanish government, fined heavily and sentenced to two years in prison (he has since agreed to pay an increased fine rather than have a 21-month suspended prison sentence). His trial, guilty verdict, fine and (suspended) sentence damaged his credibility as a morally upright athlete who could do no wrong and that of his football club (FC Barcelona). Cristiano Ronaldo is also being investigated for tax evasion by the Spanish authorities, might be tried (or not), heavily fined and get a suspended prison sentence.

Their overall goal tallies are padded with too many penalties: Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are the greatest goal scorers of their generation. They score obscene number of goals in a football season but almost half of the total goals scored both players have come from the penalty spot. In football, penalties are the easiest way to score because it involves only the designated penalty-taker and a goal keeper to beat. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, being the designated penalty-takers of their respective club sides, always take every penalty kick awarded them or their teammates thereby increasing their goal tallies. In 2013/2014 Football season in England, Luis Suarez of Liverpool FC (before he moved to FC Barcelona to become a teammate of Lionel Messi) won the highest goal scorer award in the English Premier League and shared the European Golden Shoe award with Cristiano Ronaldo by scoring 32 goals in 33 games in open play without taking a single penalty. That is a record Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo do not yet hold.

They play for football’s most valuable clubs: Messi and Ronaldo play for super-clubs in Spain where the top sides score goals by the hatful. The second millennium’s new financial order unfortunately gave birth to the modern super team essentially creating a certain form of predictability in both domestic and continental leagues. Lionel Messi plays for FC Barcelona in Spain while Ronaldo plays for Real Madrid CF also in Spain. FC Barcelona and Real Madrid CF are extremely rich and dominant football clubs that can afford to buy and stockpile the best and most expensive football talent anywhere in the world and so Messi and Ronaldo are always surrounded and assisted by world-class players to aid in dominating continental club football thus raising their international profiles. Both clubs always have a slew of world-class players at their disposal which leads to utter domination in domestic (Spanish La Liga) and continental (UEFA Champions League) football competitions.

The benefit of playing in the Modern Era: It is almost impossible to compare players of different era in a game that has changed so much over the years. Great footballers like Ferenc Puskas, Alfredo di Stefano played in an era when the game was played at a tempo unrecognizably slower than in the modern era. That does not make them less great than Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. The game played presently has changed because of changes in rules governing the game and the quality of footballs produced and used. Players in the modern era are also fitter, faster, and stronger than they have ever been, but players (especially defenders) are technically weaker than they have ever been. The Champions League’s expansions of the nineties is also an advantage to the modern player: having a group stage allows a margin of error that simply did not exist in the knock out style pre-1995 tournament. It has never been easier for attackers – Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo probably would never score 40-60 goals a season in the 1980s when the rules governing the game and footballs used didn’t benefits attackers (strikers), and defenders/defenses were littered with world-class talents.

They are a part of football’s rich history: We view the history of the game through our own national experiences, or at least we did until the modern era, where we can watch the Spanish league, Messi and Ronaldo every weekend. It is worth remembering that in the 1970s and even into the 1980s, most of Europe just watched the European Cup and UEFA Cup games of their own national teams. So, here is a little suggestion; the next time Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo score a breath-taking goal and someone on Twitter suggests the debate (on the greatest football player) is over, head to YouTube and spend ten minutes watching goals from Diego Maradona, Johan Cruyff, Pele, Ferenc Puskas, Roberto Baggio, Eusebio, Alfredo di Stefano and so on. There have been plenty of geniuses in the game, and Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are part of that rich football history.

Generational and positional bias in football: The hunt for the greatest football player in history is like that of the Holy Grail. All footballers (sportsmen) are products of their time. Due to football’s developmental stagnation relative to other sport and because there are so many different positions, and so many roles within those positions, it is hard to have a worthwhile conversation about who the best football player of all time is. Since the main objective of the game is to score a goal, the best goal scorers such as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo will always be near the top of any list about the game’s best players.

Conclusion; Don’t kid yourself that there won’t be another player like Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo, no-one thought they would see another player like Diego Maradona.

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