Archive for the ‘Jews and football’ Category


Jewish sports update, January 30, 2018

Posted on: January 30th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan


Omri Casspi and the Golden State Warriors visit the Utah Jazz tonight.


After the All-Star break, action resumes tonight with Jason Zucker and the Minnesota Wild visiting the Columbus Blue Jackets; Brandon Leipsic and the Vegas Golden Knights visiting the Calgary Flames; and David Warshofsky and the Colorado Avalanche visiting the Vancouver Canucks.

Jason Demers is listed as day-to-day with an upper body injury as the Arizona Coyotes prepare for their Thursday game against the Dallas Stars.


Kevin Pillar, aka “Superman” to his Toronto Blue Jay fans, “wants to fly higher than ever before.”

Ryan Braun will indeed start working out at first base for the Milwaukee Brewers to help with their overcrowded outfield situation.

Alex Bregman served as the keynote speaker for LSU’s First Pitch Banquet this past Sunday.

I guess you get stories like this one regarding Gabe Kapler during the off-season.

The Cleveland Jewish News weighs in on the local team’s decision to retire the Chief Wahoo logo. Next year.


Quarterback Josh Rosen, who decided not to return to UCLA so he can go into the next NFL Draft, will participate in the 2018 State Farm All-Star Football Challenge this week. The competition will feature 24 players from the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC. The athletes will be divided into six teams based on their college conference. Each team will consist of four players from the same conference who will compete for conference supremacy in a series of skills competitions. The event will be televised on Friday, Feb. 2, at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN2.

Former NFLer Geoff Schwartz on “Why everyone loves the underdog Eagles, especially the Eagles”

Soccer clubs across Germany pay tribute to Holocaust victims

Kenyan soccer kids receive Maccabi kits from the Australian contingent

Jewish sports update, January 24, 2018

Posted on: January 24th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan

Missed the last couple of days, but rather than backtrack, we’re just going to pretend I’m current.

Just a quick congrats to the Robert Kraft-owned New England Patriots and Jeff Lurie-owned Philadelphia Eagles, who will face each other in Super Bowl LII on February 4.

In other football news:

As for the games played on Jan. 23:


Omri Casspi played just two minutes in last night’s 123-112 win for the Golden State Warriors (38-10) over the visiting NY Knicks.


Brandon Leipsic played 13:47 without taking a shot on goal for the Vegas Blue Knights in their 6-3 win over the visiting Columbus Blue Jackets.

Michael Cammalleri was a scratch for the Edmonton Oilers in their 5-0 loss to the visiting Buffalo Sabres.

David Warsofsky was a scratch for the Colorado Avalanche in their 4-2 loss to the host Montreal Canadiens.

And the “latest” on…

And lest we forget, Red Fisher, widely considered one of the best hockey writers in the game, who died last Friday at the age of 91.


The Pittsburgh Pirates signed catcher Ryan Lavarnway to a minor league contract. Lavarnway, 30, appeared in six games for the Oakland As in 2017. He made his debut with the Boston Red Sox in 2011. According to MLBTradeRumors.com, “The Pirates announced a slate of non-roster invitees to Spring Training today, including catcher Ryan Lavarnway, whose minor league deals had not been previously reported. Lavarnway, 30, has appeared in parts of six big league seasons with the Red Sox, Orioles, Braves and Athletics. He spent the 2017 campaign in the Oakland organization, though he appeared in just six games at the Major League level. Lavarnway is a career .201/.262/.318 hitter through 420 MLB plate appearances, but he’s logged a much more palatable .274/.365/.421 slash in parts of seven seasons at the Triple-A level.” HT to Bob Wechsler and Jeff F. for the news.

More on…

I have to get a screener of this film about the Israeli National Team at the 2017 World Baseball Classic.

Remaining Jewish free agents: Craig Breslow, Scott Feldman, Danny Valencia


Long story short, no Jewish players are still active at the Australian Open.





Jewish sports update, January 18, 2018

Posted on: January 18th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan


Image result for omri casspiOmri Casspi returned to action last night, playing 18 minutes off the bench with four points, four rebounds, and a steal as the Golden State Warriors beat the host Chicago Bulls, 119-112. It was the 14th straight road win for Golden State (37-9). From the Sacramento Bee: “F Omri Casspi played for the first time in a week after being sidelined by lower back soreness. Casspi was available for Golden State’s win at Cleveland, but Kerr held him out. ‘I wasn’t comfortable playing him yet, because he hadn’t really played enough with that bad back,’ [Coach Steve] Kerr said. ‘I’m a little sensitive to bad backs. I wanted him to get a good workout (on Tuesday).'”


No MOT games last night. Tonight, Zach Hyman and the Toronto Maple Leafs visit the Philadelphia Flyers; Brandon Leipsic and the Vegas Golden Knights visit the Tampa Bay Lightning; David Warsofsky and the Colorado Avalanche host the San Jose Sharks; and Jason Demers, Jakob Chychrun, and the Arizona Coyotes visit the Nashville Predators.


Your regular Gabe Kapler report.

MLB.com puts Atlanta Braves hurler Max Fried at #10 on the list of top lefty prospects.

MLB.com also says the recent acquisition of Ian Kinsler is a major upgrade for the Los Angeles Angels. Conversely, his departure helps make the Detroit Tigers one of the worst teams in the game at the moment, at least according to Bleacher Report. Well at least you can’t blame Brad Ausmus anymore.


“Despite his first season at center ending prematurely due to injury, Ali Marpet and an effective pass protection effort by the offensive line aided the Tampa Bay offense in setting multiple franchise records in 2017,” according to this player recap on Buccaneers.com.

At the Australian Open, Diego Schwartzman and countryman Guido Pella of Argentina lost their doubles match to Hans Podlipnik-Castillo (Chile) and Andrei Vasilevski (Belarus) 6-3, 3-6, 7-6. Madison Brengle (USA) and partner Monica Puig (Puerto Rico) beat Alison Bai and Zoe Hives (both of Australia), 6-4, 1-6, 6-4, in the first round of women’s doubles.

Jewish sports update, January 16, 2018

Posted on: January 16th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan

Featuring games from Jan. 15…


Omri Casspi missed his third straight game after his recent back issues due to as the Golden State Warriors (36-9) beat the host Cleveland Cavaliers, 118-108. Although he had been cleared to play, he was kept out of action as a “healthy scratch.” His next opportunity will be tomorrow night when the Warriors visit the Chicago Bulls.


David Warsofsky is back! Who knew? He’s on the Colorado Avalanche now but he missed last night’s 3-1 win over the visiting Anaheim Ducks as a scratch. He was recently recalled from the San Antonio Rampage in the AHL. Warsofsky made his debut in 2013 with the Boston Bruins. he has also played for the NJ Devils and Pittsburgh Penguins. The 5’9″, 170-pound defenseman has two goals and four assists in 39 career games.

The professional life-span of an athlete is usually pretty brief; hockey players last five-and-a-half years, slightly less than a Major Leaguer which tops the sports world with 5.6 seasons. So it’s never too early to think about your next career, as Andre Burakovsky is doing. #Flipper.

Although the Arizona Coyotes didn’t play last night, you can still read about Jakob Chychrun.

Tonight’s schedule shows Chychrun, Jason Demers, and the rest of the Coyotes hosting the San Jose Sharks; Zach Hyman and the Toronto Maple Leafs hosting the St. Louis Blues; and Brandon Leipsic and the Vegas Golden Knights visiting the Nashville Predators


Israel’s Dudi Sela was knocked out of the Australian Open in the first round. Camila Giorgi (Italy) bested Anna Kalinskaya of Russia, 6-4, 6-3. Denis Shapovalov (Canada) beat Stefanos Tsitsipas (Greece), 6-1, 6-3, 7-6,


Josh Rosen is becoming the subject of a lot of chatter for the upcoming draft. Could he be a good fit for the Denver Broncos?

An Algemeiner Journal headline: “New York Times Places Patriots’ Jewish Owner in Christian ‘Holy Trinity’.” Hmm.


His post-season may have bought him some time, but how much more patience will the LA Dodgers show for Joc Pederson?

How will the acquisition of Curtis Granderson (one of the class guys in the game and a favorite of mine) impact Kevin Pillar?

ThatBallsOutaHere — a Phillies-centric blog — tells fans why they should be excited about their new manager, Gabe Kapler.


Goldberg, the wrestler, will be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.






Jewish sports update, January 12, 2018

Posted on: January 12th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan

Games of Jan. 11


No games last night for Omri Casspi and the Golden State Warriors. Tonight they visit the Milwaukee Bucks.

The sports management club at Rae Kushner Yeshiva High School in Livingston, NJ, recently had the special opportunity to visit the offices of the NBA.


In the only NHL/MOT game, Andre Burakovsky was a healthy scratch as the Washington Capitols (27-14-3) lost to the visiting Carolina Hurricanes, 3-1.

Tonight, the Caps visit the Carolina Hurricanes while Michael Cammalleri and the Edmonton Oilers visit Jakob Chychrun, Jason Demers, and the Arizona Coyotes.


Mazel tov to Joc Pederson, who tied the knot earlier this month to Kelsey Williams..

Alex Bregman and other athletes helped out at a benefit skills camp.

Could Ryan Sherriff serve as the closer for the St. Louis Cardinals? Max Fried for the Atlanta Braves’ starting rotation? And could Danny Valencia wind up with the Colorado Rockies?


Mitchell Schwartz, the All-Pro offensive tackle for the KC Chiefs, looks back on an ultimately disappointing season.



Jewish sports update, January 11, 2018

Posted on: January 11th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan

In last night’s action…


Omri Casspi played 24 minutes of the bench, scoring six points with three rebounds, three assists, and two steals, but the Golden State Warriors (33-9) dropped this one to the visiting LA Clippers, 125-106.


Just two games last night, both involving MOTs. No such similar circumstances tonight.

Jason Zucker had an assist on the Minnesota Wild’s first goal in their 2-1 win over the host Chicago Blackhawks. It was the 16th on the year for Zucker, who took three shots on goal in 13:33. The Wild improve to 23-17-4. Nice to see he’s making a difference off the ice as wellZucker of the Wild and his wife Carly are partnering with University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital to build a family suite and broadcast studio. That’s Zucker on the left with Michael  E. Jordan and Alex Fenner of the sports apparel firm UNRL.

Former Bear goalie’s firm donates to hospital project planned by Wild player

Zach Hyman took one shot in 19:11 as the Toronto Maple Leafs (25-17-3) lost to the visiting Ottawa Senators, 3-2.

Breaking (?) Jice news: There’s evidently still some dispute over the Jewish identity of Andre Burakovsky of the Washington Capitols. You may recall there was a bit of discrepancy a couple of years ago as to whether he denied being Jewish. But he’s still listed as such in the latest edition of the Jewish Sports Review and that’s good enough for me. To recap his season, Burakovsky has three goals and five assists in just 21 games due to a combination of injury and healthy scratches. The Caps are first in the Metropolitan Division/ second in the Eastern Conference with a record of 27-13-3.

Image result for jakob chychrunA “new” Jice-man, according to JSR, is Jakob Chychrun, a 19-year-old, 6-2, 200 pound defenseman for the Arizona Coyotes. He has appeared in 16 games this season with one goal and five assists. According to Bob Wechsler, author of Day by Day in Jewish Sports History and The Jewish Baseball Card Book, “His mother must be Jewish, because his father [Jeff] played in the NHL.” Chychrun the younger actually made his NHL debut last year.


Fair or not, one ESPN contributor picked Adam Bisnowaty as the most disappointing rookie for the NY Giants: “This is probably nitpicking a bit. Bisnowaty was a sixth-round pick out of Pittsburgh. He wasn’t supposed to make an immediate impact. He was, however, supposed to make the roster. Instead, he sat on the practice squad for the first 16 weeks of the season and looked overmatched in pass protection during his one appearance in the finale against the Redskins.”


Legendary sports writer Irwin Cohen contributed this piece on Jews and baseball to the Brooklyn-based Jewish Press.


Sports sandals, anyone? These come from the Israeli firm, Naot.

Source by Naot sandals



Jewish sports update, January 10, 2018

Posted on: January 10th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan


Only two MOT games last night. Michael Cammalleri took one shot on goal in 12:32 as the Edmonton Oilers (18-23-3) couldn’t overcome a 2-0 deficit in the first period, losing to the host Nashville Predators, 2-1.

Jason Zucker took three SOG in 19:20 in the Minnesota Wild’s 3-2 overtime loss to the visiting Calgary Flames. The Wild are (is?) 22-17-4.

On tonight’s docket: Zucker and the Wild move on to Chicago to face the Blackhawks. Zach Hyman and the Toronto Maple Leafs host the Ottawa Senators.


Omri Casspi and the Golden State Warriors were off yesterday. They host the LA Clippers tonight.


This could be a make-or-break season for LA Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson.

There’s been chatter that Baltimore orioles pitcher Richard Bleier could wind up in the starting rotation, but according to this piece, maybe he’ll be the closer?


There are all sorts of metrics the scouts use to see if an athlete  is “worthy” of playing in the NFL, such as the Wonderlic Test. But how much does character count? Is the young man a good team guy? And how easily can rumors quash a career? Josh Rosen might be the target of negative assessments. We know he doesn’t want to play for the Cleveland Browns, but what are the chances the NY Jets claim him?

Only a Game, the public radio sports show, offered this segment on quarterback Bennie Friedman in their series on the history of the forward pass. You can hear the story — “The Son Of Jewish Immigrants Who Became Football’s First Passing Specialist” — here. Thanks to the very informative SportsBiblio.com for the link.


I don’t know how much Jewish content there is in This Book Has Balls: Sports Rants from the MVP of Talking Trash, by the actor Michael Rapaport, but I’m including it just on the basis of the cover:

Image result for michael rapaport book balls


Well, that got ugly in a hurry

Posted on: January 7th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan

So now I have no horse in the race. The NFL season is officially over for the Jewish players. Mitchell Schwartz and the Kansas City Chiefs coughed up a 21-3 lead in the third quarter to lose to the visiting Tennessee Titans, 22-21.

Schwartz once again played every offensive down (58 plus four more on special teams), but their only so much a lineman can do. On the other hand, Titans QB Marcus Mariota caught his own pass to score a touchdown.

Of course, there’s always Bob Kraft‘s New England Patriots. And, no, Julian Edelman is still not Jewish according to the sources who make these determinations.

Jewish sports update, January 6, 2018

Posted on: January 6th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan

Including events of Jan. 5…

In the only major pro action that featured a Jewish athlete, Brandon Leipsic took one shot on goal in 13:13 as the Vegas Golden Knights (28-10-2) won their ninth game in their last 10 games, 5-4, over the visiting Chicago Blackhawks. Tonight, Michael Cammalleri and the Edmonton Oilers visit the Dallas Stars; Zach Hyman and the Toronto Maple Leafs host the Vancouver Canucks; Jason Demers and the Arizona Coyotes host the NY Rangers; and Jason Zucker and the Minnesota Wild visit the Colorado Avalanche.

Omri Casspi is listed as probable for tonight’s game between his Golden State Warriors and the host LA Clippers. He missed the last game with bruised ribs.

Today, Mitchell Schwartz and the Kansas City Chiefs hosts the Tennessee Titans in a wild card NFL playoff. Schwartz was named to the AP All-Pro team as the right tackle. This is second straight year being so honored for the 28-year-old Schwartz. His brother, Geoff — now an NFL analyst — offers this piece on what each team needs to do to win in the first round.

A Jewish quarterback in the New York area would be nifty, but would the Giants, who get a high pick, go for UCLA’s Josh Rosen? Maybe not, according to this article on NJ.com. “…as new Giants general manager Dave Gentleman attempts to rebuild the locker room, Rosen’s personality could be a big story in New York over the next few months. Already, scouts have begun to question Rosen’s motivation for playing the game and personality.” Ruh-ro.

UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen passes during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Southern California in Los Angeles. UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen is skipping his senior season to enter the NFL draft.

Hard to believe — as I sit in NJ where the “real feel” factor is -12 — that spring training is just a few weeks away. The Baltimore Orioles are hosting a minicamp. Richard Bleier is on hand. Could he move from the bullpen into the starting rotation? The World Champion Houston Astros are embarking on one of those caravans. Alex Bregman will be one of the participants. Some people in the Milwaukee Brewer universe are complaining that they can’t move forward with outfield plans because Ryan Braun‘s contract (and no trade clause) are hog-tying them. Braun is set to make $20 million this year. Hey, no one forced them to give him that kind of money, so don’t blame him.

Moving to the Israeli figure skating scene (!)… Let’s kill all the lawyers. (Don’t blame me; that’s Shakespeare’s line.)



Jewish sports update, January 4, 2018

Posted on: January 4th, 2018 by Ron Kaplan


Omri Casspi missed last’s game with a “mid-back strain,” as the Golden State Warriors (30-8) eked out a 125-122 win over the host Dallas Mavericks.


No games involving Jewish players last night. This evening features the full compliment of Jice-men, including, Zach Hyman and the Toronto Maple Leafs host the San Jose Sharks; Branden Leipsic and the Vegas Golden Knights visit the St. Louis Blues; Jason Zucker and the Minnesota Wild host the Buffalo Sabres; Michael Cammalleri and the Edmonton Oilers host the Anaheim Ducks; and Jason Demers and the Arizona Coyotes host the Nashville Predators.


Josh Rosen has announced he will leave UCLA and declared for the NFL draft. He was featured in the opening question on today’s Pardon the Interruption. The Cleveland Jewish News notes that the home-town Browns — who finished 0-16 — have the first pick and might go for Rosen. (Here’s the paper’s outlook for the city’s pro sports teams for the new year.)


The St. Louis Cardinals are showcasing pitcher Ryan Sherriff in the “winter cavalcade.” This is one way teams keep the fans interested during the dreary winter months. Ian Kinsler ranks fifth on the list of all-time  Detroit Tigers second basemen, following Charlie Gehringer, Lou Whitaker, Dick McAuliffe, and Placido Polanco. How much money do you think streaky LA Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson will make in arbitration? And will Alex Bregman join his Houston Astros teammates when the world champions visit the White House? After all, according to this piece in U.S. News and World Report, Bregman, “who called Trump a ‘joke’ before the 2016 presidential election, was recently asked whether he would accept an invitation. ‘I don’t know. I’m gonna do whatever Carlos Beltran and Carlos Correa do,’ Bregman said, referring to two of the team’s players from Puerto Rico.”


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