Fantasy Basketball: Week 24 Waiver Wire

It all happens so fast. There are 17 days left in the NBA regular season. Many head-to-head leagues will appoint their champions this week. Another Fantasy season nears its end.

But it’s not over yet. And with every addition to the growing OFS (out for the season) list, the waiver wire adds a new wrinkle. Each of the following names were marked OFS just over the past week: Tim Hardaway Jr, Kelly Oubre, Derrick Rose, Jeff Teague, Wendell Carter, Chandler Hutchison.

And that doesn’t include the dozen or so players who had already received the designation, nor does it include players like Nikola Mirotic, who may miss the rest of the regular season but expect to return during the playoffs.

If, by some miraculous fortune, your team has not been impacted by the growing list of the infirmed, then

Steelers March Madness: The Best of the Rest featuring 2010 vs. 1997

Bracketing the best teams in the past 50 years of Pittsburgh Steelers history never to win a title. Who do you consider “Best of the Rest”?

BTSC looks back at the teams that Steeler Nation counts as the best and most memorable in franchise lore that failed to hoist the Lombardi. As we enter into March Madness, BTSC presents a “Not Sweet Enough 16” over the next month to crown the “Best of the Rest”. The last time around the immaculate, No. 4-seeded team from 1972 battled Bill Cowher’s first team, the 1992 Steelers. Here are the final tallies…

1972 – Immaculately Sewing the Seeds of a Dynasty (11-3) – 77%

1992 – Cowher Power is Born (11-5) – 23%

This time around, the fifth-seeded 2010 team (12-4) that slipped on the stairway to seven does battle with the twelth-seeded 1997 team (11-5) that John Elway vanquished for his shot at glory. Be sure to vote for the best or most memorable team (your choice) below in the poll and share your thoughts in the comments section. Check back to BTSC Wednesday for the results.


No. 5 Seed: 2010 (12-4)

Pittsburgh’s dynastic chances took a hit in 2009 after the Super Bowl victory in the 2008 campaign, but 2010 was supposed to be the chance to rectify that. It started off very unlikely in the offseason when Santonio Holmes, who was suspended for the first four weeks of the season because of substance abuse, freaked out on a plane and was subsequently traded to the New York Jets for a fifth rounder. Ben Roethlisberger received a six-game ban (later reduced to four) for an alleged sexual assault in Milledgeville, GA in which he was not charged. 2010 also saw the departures of RB Willie Parker, CB Deshea Townsend and S Tyrone Carter and the return of LB Larry Foote, CB Bryant McFadden and WR Antwaan Randle-El. The team’s biggest performances came courtesy of Ben, Mike Wallace (1,257 receiving yards/10 TDs), Rashard Mendenhall (1,273 rushing yards/13 TDs), James Harrison (NFL Defensive Player of the Year), LaMarr Woodley (10 sacks) and Troy Polamalu (7 INTs). The season began with Dennis Dixon behind center in a victory vs. Atlanta. It was won when Mendenhall galloped 50 yards in OT for a score. The next week saw Charlie Batch take over for Dixon in a win that saw Antonio Brown take the opening kick 89 yards for a score. After a 3-1 start, Ben returned in Week 5 and went 9-3 in the final three quarter of the campaign. The signature win came in Week 13 against the team that they battled neck-and-neck for the division all year, the Baltimore Ravens. No. 7, booted-up with a broken foot, suffered a gruesome nose break in the game. Trailing 10-6 late in the fourth, LaMarr Woodley and Troy Polamalu teamed up with a sack and recovery of Flacco. Roethlisberger found Isaac Redman for a nine-yard score and the win. In the playoffs, they came from behind 14 points vs. Baltimore to win 31-24. In the AFCCG, the Steelers bested Santonio Holmes and the Jets to reach the Super Bowl. In their eighth SB, Ben threw an ugly pick-six and Aaron Rodgers, Greg Jennings and Jordy Nelson were one step ahead of the secondary and shot the Pack out to an 18-point lead in Q2. But the Steelers mounted a furious comeback and were driving for the lead late in the fourth. However, Rashard Mendenhall fumbled and (after a GB FG) a last minute comeback was suffocated by the Green Bay defense and the Steelers fell in their most-recent SB.

Pro Bowlers: James Harrison, Brett Keisel, Troy Polamalu and Maurkice Pouncey

First-Team All Pros: James Harrison and Troy Polamalu

Second-Team All Pros: Maurkice Pouncey

Team MVP: Troy Polamalu

No. 1 Draft Pick: Maurkice Pouncey

Rookie of the Year: Maurkice Pouncey


No. 12 Seed: 1997 (11-5)

1997 saw Kordell Stewart finally seize the starting QB job for the Steelers and many viewed this season an uncertainty due to the loss in Free Agency of LB Chad Brown, CBs Rod Woodson and Deon Figures, WRs Ernie Mills and Andre Hastings and DL Brentson Buckner. This was also the season that the team changed their block-style numbers to the rounded digits to match the ones on the helmets. The team also re-established themselves as a running team with the NFL’s most attempts of the decade (572) and the third-most yards (2,479) of the 90s. Leading the team were Stewart, Jerome Bettis (1,665 yards and 9 TDs total), Yancey Thigpen (1,398 yards and 7 TDs), Levon Kirkland (5 sacks), Carnell Lake (3 INTs and 6 sacks), Darren Perry (4 INTs), Donell Wolford (4 INTs) and Norm Johnson (106 points). The season started off with an ugly 37-7 loss to Dallas at home and by Week 3…the team was 1-2. But they won 10 of 12 with multiple come-from-behind wins, including a deficit of 21 against the Ravens in Week 6. The big wins of the season came against Denver (35-24) in Week 15 and an OT thriller in the snow against New England in Week 16. They would face both those teams at home in the playoffs. The Steelers beat NE 7-6 in the Divisional Round only to see Kordell throw three picks in a 24-21 loss to Denver in the AFCCG. Despite falling short with a Super Bowl ticket on the line, 1997 was a very entertaining year.

Pro Bowlers: Jerome Bettis, Dermontti Dawson, Levon Kirkland, Carnell Lake, Joel Steed and Yancey Thigpen

First-Team All Pros: Dermontti Dawson, Levon Kirkland and Carnell Lake

Second-Team All Pros: Jerome Bettis and Yancey Thigpen

Team MVP: Jerome Bettis

No. 1 Draft Pick: Chad Scott

Rookie of the Year: Chad Scott


Brandon Clarke may be the best two-way NBA prospect in March Madness

By: | March 25, 2019

Gonzaga’s Brandon Clarke has been one of the most exciting prospects in the NCAA Tournament, which should help his draft stock.

He did not appear on our aggregate mock drafts before December but has ranked as a late first-round pick in each of our last four aggregate mock drafts since December while Bleacher Report and The Athletic both view him as a lottery pick. His ridiculously high floor could give him even more of a bump given the success he has had during the tournament thus far averaging 29.5 points, 8.0 boards and 4.0 blocks per game en route to the Sweet 16.

The San Jose State transfer actually led the NCAA in field goal percentage (69.9 percent) during the regular season. In fact, through his three years in the NCAA, Clarke ranks as one of the 10 most

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Hang Time Podcast: Playoff races, Rookie of the Year + latest Power Rankings

John Schuhmann joins me to break down this weekend’s action and analyze how it all affects the playoffs races in the East and West.

Then we dig into the Rookie of the Year battle between Luka Doncic and Trae Young, the latest NBA.com Power Rankings, and much more.

* * *

Subscribe to the Hang Time podcast on Apple Podcasts or Spotify for a new episode every Monday and Thursday this season!

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AAF Week 7 Review: Shaquille Richardson and Steven Johnson among standout performers for Arizona

We take a look back at the seventh week of action from the Alliance of American Football and check in with some former members of the Black and Gold.

While the Orlando Apollos became the first AAF team to earn a playoff berth this season on Saturday, recording their sixth win of the year with a 36-6 victory over the Atlanta Legends, it was the limited snaps that Johnny Manziel saw at quarterback for the Memphis Express on Sunday night that drew most of the media’s attention.

But the real hero on the day for Memphis under center was Brandon Silvers, finishing the day with 24 completions for 266 yards, two touchdowns and two 2-point conversation in an overtime win at home against the Birmingham Iron.

Week 7 results:

Orlando Apollos 36 @ Atlanta Legends 6

Salt Lake Stallions 15 @ San Antonio Commanders 19

San Diego Fleet 15 @ Arizona Hotshots 32

Birmingham Iron 25 @ Memphis Express 31 (OT)

Former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Terrence Garvin was once again one of the standout performers for the playoff bound Apollos, recording five solo tackles and a forced fumble, while tight end Scott Orndoff was held to just one reception in the game.

The Iron lost their third game of the season in heartbreaking fashion to Memphis, and it was a quiet day from many of the former Steelers on Birmingham’s roster. L’Damian Washington was targeted just once all game long, after recording 158 yards from 10 receptions and score two touchdowns the week before, and Casey Sayles would finish the game with only one tackle.

Former Pittsburgh running backs Terrell Watson of the San Diego Fleet and Trey Williams of the San Antonio Commanders had varying levels of success over the weekend. Watson would manage 44 yards from his 10 attempts and also score a touchdown, but Williams would end the game with just 19 yards from his six carries.

Shaquille Richardson and Steven Johnson of the Arizona Hotshots were arguably the most impressive former members of the Black and Gold in Week 7. Richardson lead his team in tackles with eight and also recorded an interception and a forced fumble, while Johnson added seven tackles of his own and also had an interception.

Week 7 Highlights:

Orlando Apollos 36 @ Atlanta Legends 6

Salt Lake Stallions 15 @ San Antonio Commanders 19

San Diego Fleet 15 @ Arizona Hotshots 32

Birmingham Iron 25 @ Memphis Express 31 (OT)

Report: Steelers expected to host Maryland safety Darnell Savage Jr. on pre-draft visit

The Steelers also reportedly met with Akron linebacker Ulysees Gilbert at his pro day last week.

While there are still several notable school who have yet to host their pro day events this offseason, reports of players the Pittsburgh Steelers intend hosting on pre-draft vists over the coming weeks are already starting to emerge.

As per Jeff Zrebiec of The Athletic, Maryland safety Darnell Savage Jr. is the latest prospect the Steelers are rumored to be meeting with this year, a former cornerback with impressive speed who appears on the rise with the mock draft experts as of late.

Projecting as more of a traditional free safety rather than someone who would play closer to the line scrimmage, perhaps the biggest criticism of Savage from the scouting reports is his inconsistent tackling. However, his speed on tape is clear for all to see and his 40-time at the NFL Scouting Combine merely confirmed what many already knew.

As a former corner, his coverage skills are considered to be a notch above many of the other players available at his position in the draft this year, and his production at Maryland would seem to suggest he might be more of a playmaker than many of the other options Pittsburgh currently has on the roster.

At just 5-foot-10 and 198-pounds, some will consider him slight undersized for safety in the NFL, but career stats of 182 tackles, 8 interceptions and 13 pass defended in four years at Maryland are hard to overlook.

With his pro day due to be held on Wednesday March 27, it will be interesting to note who attends on behalf of the Steelers to get a closer look at him.

Expected to be a Day 2 selection who could slip into Round 4, Savage could be an interesting selection for Pittsburgh if he was still available to them towards the end of the third-round.

In our efforts to keep track of all the Steelers pre-draft interests, it would appear we missed a reported encounter between the team and Akron linebacker Ulysees Gilbert at his pro day last Thursday.

As per Zach Hicks of our sister publication Stampede Blue who spoke with the player last week, the young prospect met with a Pittsburgh scout after his pro day event.

According to Tony Pauline of Draft Analyst, Gilbert put up some impressive numbers in front of the scouts and has him projected as late round draft selection.

“Ulysees “Don’t call me Grant” Gilbert, graded as a street free agent entering the season, put on an athletic display during testing.”

“Measuring 6002 and 224 pounds, Grant completed 20 reps on the bench press and touched 39.5 inches in the vertical jump and 10-foot-6 in the broad jump.”

“His ran super fast in the 40, as both of his times were clocked under 4.5 seconds on most watches, including a best of 4.46 seconds. His three-cone came in at 6.94 seconds.”

“Grant, who stood out during three days of Shrine Game practice, looked fast in position drills and spent time with the Baltimore Ravens during the day.”

“I stamped him as a potential seventh-round pick last June during my preview of Akron, and I think that’s where Grant ends up in the draft.”

The pro day schedule for Monday should see the Steelers with representative at Iowa, North Carolina and Texas Tech among others.

Power Rankings, Week 24: Playoff chase gets a little clearer

Every week, the playoff picture is becoming a little more clear.

In the Eastern Conference, we can be pretty sure that the Milwaukee Bucks, Toronto Raptors and Philadelphia 76ers will be the No. 1, 2 and 3 seeds, respectively. We can also be pretty sure that the Indiana Pacers and Boston Celtics will play in the No. 4 vs No. 5 series, even if we don’t know where that series will start.

After that, things aren’t so certain. The Orlando Magic (winners of four straight games) and Charlotte Hornets (winners of three straight) have kept it a five-team race for the final three playoff spots.

In the West, we know the eight teams in the postseason. The Sacramento Kings haven’t been eliminated, but are now six games in the loss column out of eighth place. But no seed in the West is nearly as locked up as the top three

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Supreme Court passes on Jordan logo dispute

11:45 AM ET

Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court said Monday it won’t step in to referee a copyright dispute between Nike and a photographer who took a well-known image of basketball great Michael Jordan. That means lower court rulings for the athletic apparel maker will stand.

Photographer Jacobus Rentmeester sued Nike after it used an image he took of Jordan in the 1980s as inspiration for a photograph it commissioned for its own ads. The company’s photo, which was used on posters and billboards, then became the basis for the “Jumpman” logo for Nike’s Air Jordan shoes. Rentmeester sued Beaverton, Oregon-based Nike in 2015 saying both the Nike photo and logo infringed on his copyright image.

Rentmeester’s original photo of Jordan was taken for Life magazine in 1984, while Jordan was a student at the University of North Carolina. It shows Jordan holding a basketball

Mock Draft Monday: Steelers try to reverse their trend of misses on 1st round CBs

The Steelers haven’t had the best success with drafting cornerbacks in the NFL Draft, and the latest mock draft has them taking another stab at the position in Round 1.

The 2019 NFL Draft is about a month away, and those who produce mock drafts almost on a weekly basis are feverishly typing away trying to give their best estimation as to what will take place in late April when the three day selection process takes place.

For Pittsburgh Steelers fans, the biggest debate is what position the team will target in Round 1? Will it be inside linebacker? Will it be wide receiver? The Steelers have options early in the draft, but which player should be their top pick is a debate which turns ugly depending who you are talking to.

For this Mock Draft Monday, a space where we all understand mock drafts are nothing more than guesses, I looked at The Draft Network’s Trevor Sikkema’s latest mock draft to see who he had tabbed as going to the Steelers.

Here is the pick:

Steelers

Byron Murphy

CB, Washington

Look, I don’t care that the Steelers don’t traditionally take cornerbacks of Murphy’s mold and of his smaller size. The Steelers need good, reliable cornerbacks and Murphy is the best one in the class. Pick him and build around him from there as you add to your secondary over the next few years.

They won’t regret this pick, I promise.

For the record, it should be noted both Devin White and Devin Bush were both off the board before the 11th pick. White went to the Broncos at pick 10, and Bush to the Bengals at pick 11. With those prospects gone, the Steelers snagged themselves a cornerback they hope can break their failed draft pick mold.

If you are like me, you don’t keep tabs on all of these players in college football. There just isn’t enough time in the day to watch all these prospects. While many will know plenty about Murphy as a prospect, others just want to know the basics. Here is a draft breakdown via The Draft Network:

PROSPECT COMPARISONKyle Fuller

BEST TRAIT – Zone Cover Skills

WORST TRAIT – Run Support

BEST FILM – Utah (2018)

WORST FILM – Auburn (2018)

RED FLAGS – None

Byron Murphy is an elite prospect who can plug into just about any system at play at a high level. Murphy has surreal mobility and polish for a younger prospect. His explosiveness, ball skills and route recognition skills make him a great fit to play in both shallow and short zones. Murphy would have little issue stepping up and filling on the boundary or contesting shallow throws in front of his face. Murphy has the upside to be one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL by the end of year 3.

What do you think of the pick? Would you be okay with Murphy being the Steelers’ top pick? Let us know what you think in the comment section below!