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ght have looked to those who followed the em
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Nashville won a game but may have lost a goaltender.Colin Wilson had two goals and two assists to lead the Nashville Predators to a 5-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday night.Nashville, though, lost goaltender Pekka Rinne — who still collected his NHL-leading 29th win — to a lower-body injury in the third period. He had stopped 20 of 21 shots before being replaced by Carter Hutton.Hutton turned aside all 10 shots he faced over the games final 17 minutes.Its my job just to be ready to go whenever, Hutton said. You mentally prepare to play every night. Thats part about being a pro.Craig Smith, Filip Forsberg and Mike Fisher also scored for Nashville, winners of four straight. Mike Ribeiro had two assists.Rinne was hurt when Vancouver forward Chris Higgins drove toward the Predators net and became entangled with Nashville defenceman Anton Volchenkov. The pair then collided with Rinne, and their momentum carried the Finn into the end boards.When Pekka left the game, the best player on the ice for about four or five minutes was Carter Hutton, said Nashville coach Peter Laviolette. It was nice to see him come off of the bench and get into the game.The team announced that Rinne was day-to-day and that an update would come Thursday following Wednesdays off day.Alexander Edler had the lone goal for Vancouver, which has lost its last three.The Canucks have four more games remaining on their current road trip.The last two games, we played good, we just lost, Vancouver coach Willie Desjardins said. Its a tough trip and its going to be a battle. Every game is going to be tough. Theyre not going to be any easier.Smith scored the games first goal at 4:07 of the opening period.With Vancouver short-handed due to a penalty for too many men on the ice, Wilson found Smith in the low slot, where he beat Vancouver goaltender Eddie Lack for his 13th of the season.Just 2:15 later, Wilson gave Nashville a 2-0 lead.Fisher took the puck away from Brad Richardson inside the Nashville blue line and carried it down the right side. He found Wilson inside the Vancouver blue line and skated to the faceoff dot, where he beat Lack with a wrist shot high to the far side.Fish is great, Wilson said. He works hard, he wins his battles, hes a playmaker and does everything well. Hes fun to play with and weve been doing well together.Wilson has multiple points in six of his last 11 games.Edler halved the Nashville lead at 2:47 of the second, connecting from the right circle after a prolonged scramble inside the Predators zone.Forsberg scored at 13:32 of the third when his wrist shot caught a piece of Lack and then trickled across the goal line.I feel like its deciding the whole game and obviously its at a time in the game that I have to be better, Lack said. Before that, I felt like I made the saves that I had to make, and then obviously letting one of those in is not anything I want at that point.Fisher struck at 15:31 of the third, and he was followed by Wilsons second goal of the game at 17:39.Rinne was the goaltender of record in the game, earning his 29th win.Notes: Wilson has points in four consecutive games. ... Nashville LW James Neal returned to the lineup after missing five games with a lower-body injury. He posted two assists. ... Vancouver D Christopher Tanev assisted on Edlers goal. It was his first point since Dec. 22. ... The Canucks are 7-11-1 when their opponent scores first this season. Houston Astros Pro Shop . The hard-serving 22-year-old from Thornhill, Ont., became the first Canadian to be ranked in the Top 10 on the ATP World Tour thanks to his runner-up performance at Rogers Cup in Montreal. Stitched Astros Jerseys . Pierre last November, only to watch St. Pierre leave the UFC octagon with his welterweight title belt and a split-decision victory. https://www.cheapastros.com/183o-francis...stros.html . Louis Blues, having added Ryan Miller and Steve Ott from Buffalo, remain the No. Cheap Astros Jerseys . Sweeting scored two in the first and three in the second before Strong (4-4) got two back in the fourth. Sweeting then scored three in the fifth, two in the sixth and one in the seventh to grab a commanding 9-2 lead. Roberto Osuna Astros Jersey . Solomon Elimimian did not make the trip with the team after suffering what appeared to be a right leg injury in the teams regular season finale against the Calgary Stampeders.NEW YORK, N.Y. - Michael Sam waited and waited. Hours passed, rounds came and went, and eventually, there were only eight more picks left on the third and final day of the NFL draft. For just a moment, it looked as if his chance of being picked by a pro team and becoming the leagues first openly gay player might take a detour. Or at least be delayed. The call finally came Saturday from the St. Louis Rams, the team right down the road from where Sam played his college ball at the University of Missouri. Sam was selected in the seventh and final round and admitted it was a frustrating wait. He said teams that passed on him chickened out and he should have been drafted sooner. "From last season alone, I shouldve been in the first three rounds. SEC Defensive Player of the Year, All-American," Sam said. He stopped short of directly saying his stock dropped in the draft because he came out. "You know what, who knows? Who knows? Only the people who sit in the war room know," he said. "They saw Michael Sam, day after day they scratched it off the board. That was their loss. But St. Louis kept me on that board. And you know what I feel like Im a (Jadeveon) Clowney, a first draft pick. Im proud of where I am now." Sam came out as gay in media interviews earlier this year. His team and coaches knew his secret and kept it for his final college season. He went on to have the best year of his career: He was the co-defensive player of the year in the NCAAs best football conference and had 11.5 sacks. The pick came after several rounds of suspense. The first round of the day, No. 4 overall, came and went, no Sam. Then the fifth and sixth, and finally, the day was down to just a handful of picks. When Mike Kensil, the NFLs vice-president of game operations, walked to the podium at Radio City Music Hall in the drafts final minutes to announce the Rams second-to-last pick, the crowd got a sense something was up. Very few of the last day picks were announced at the podium. Twitter lit up with suggestions the Rams were about to make news. When Kensil said: "The St. Louis Rams select ... Michael Sam..." the fans gave a hearty cheer, chanting "Yes! Yes! Yes!" and "Michael Sam!" Sam was in San Diego watching with friends and family at the home of his agent, Joe Barkett of Empire Athletes. ESPN and the NFL Network had cameras there and showed Sams reaction. Sam was on the phone bending over, with his boyfriend hugging him and rubbing his left bicep. When Sam got off the phone, the tears started. He gave his boyfriend a big kiss and a long hug as he cried and his eyes reddened. After, they shared cake — and another kiss. "Thank you to the St. Louis Rams and the whole city of St. Louis. Im using every once of this to achieve greatness!!" Sam tweeted with a frenzied typo moments after he was picked, with a picture of himself wearing a Rams cap and a pink polo shirt. The six-foot-two, 255-pound Sam was considered a mid-to-late round pick, far from a sure thing to be drafted.dddddddddddd He played defensive end in college, but hes short for that position in the NFL and slower than most outside linebackers, the position hell need to transition to at the professional level. He was taken with the 249th overall pick out of 256. Players from Marist, Maine and Canadas McGill University — Redmen tackle Laurent Duvernay-Tardif went in the sixth round, 200th overall to Kansas City — were taken ahead of Sam. "In the world of diversity we live in now, Im honoured to be a part of this," Rams coach Jeff Fisher said during an interview on ESPN. The NFL had no comment on Sam being drafted. The impact of Sams selection goes far beyond football. At a time when gay marriage is gaining acceptance among Americans, Sams entry into the NFL is a huge step toward the integration of gay men into professional team sports. Pro sports have in many ways lagged behind the rest of society in acceptance. "Michael Sam wouldnt have been drafted five years ago," said former Viking punter Chris Kluwe, who has accused Minnesota of cutting him in part because of his vocal support for gay rights. In the last year, NBA veteran Jason Collins has come out publicly as gay, and is now playing for the Brooklyn Nets. Collins said before the Nets playoff game against the Heat that he was watching the draft and texted Sam after he was picked. "Its a great day for Michael and his family and for the NFL," Collins said. Publicly, most people in and related to the NFL have been supportive of Sam. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has said Sam would be welcome in the league and judged solely on his ability to play. A few wondered whether teams would be reluctant to draft Sam because of all the media attention that would come with it. Fair or not, the NFL — coming off a season in which a bullying scandal involving players on the Miami Dolphins was one of the biggest stories in sports — was looking at a possible public relations hit if Sam was not drafted. He would likely have been signed as a free agent and given a chance to make a team in training camp, but to many it would have looked as if he was being rejected. Now that hes there, it could be seen as an opportunity for the NFL to show that crass locker room culture is not as prevalent as it might have looked to those who followed the embarrassing Dolphins scandal. But all the reaction to Sams news wasnt positive from the league. Miami safety Don Jones posted a one-word tweet, "Horrible" shortly after Sam was drafted. It was later taken down. The teams general manager said he was aware, and was disappointed. Wade Davis, a gay former NFL player who is now the executive director of the gay rights advocacy group "You Can Play," said Sam only needs to do his job to have an impact beyond the field. "Michael Sam doesnt have to be a vocal advocate (for gay rights)," Davis said. "His visibility is his advocacy." ' ' '
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