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Detroit Lions vs. Minnesota Vikings Live Score and Stats – November 8, 2020 Gametracker – CBSSports.com

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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) The Minnesota Vikings have rarely shied from a ground-oriented approach on offense in seven seasons under coach Mike Zimmer, never more apparent than in their last game.

Dalvin Cook has made this strong-arm strategy viable, rather than some tired relic. With 30 rushes for 163 yards and three touchdowns – plus two catches for 63 yards and another score – Cook carried the Vikings to a potentially pivotal victory at Green Bay. As Kirk Cousins only attempted 14 passes, Cook became the first player with 30 carries for Minnesota since 2013.

”We’re going to have to ride this guy,” Zimmer said.

The Vikings have had a player reach 30-plus rushing attempts 17 times in their 60-year history, including six by single-game franchise record holder Adrian Peterson (35). The Vikings are 16-0-1 in those games.

When asked this week to assess Cook’s unique traits, Zimmer paused briefly before invoking the name of the NFL’s all-time leading rusher, Emmitt Smith.

”Really good feet. Quick accelerator. Powerful runner. Good vision,” Zimmer said.

The Vikings have run the ball on 49.6% of their plays, the third-most in the league. Baltimore, the NFL leader, employs a run-heavy quarterback in 2019 NFL MVP Lamar Jackson.

”We just run yards like Swiss chard,” Cook said, using the leafy green vegetable for a clever rhyme.

The nutritional value is unmistakable, as long as they’re controlling the ball and scoring points. That’s the way they tried to win with Cook’s predecessor, too. Peterson, coincidentally, will be in Minnesota on Sunday with his latest team, the Detroit Lions.

The Vikings (2-5) have a lot of catchup to do.

They blew double-digit second-half leads and lost be one point to Tennessee and Seattle. They were also no-shows in one-sided defeats to Green Bay, Indianapolis and Atlanta. Their performance against Detroit (3-4) will reveal a lot about whether they’re truly a darkhorse contender for the expanded playoffs or better off refocusing on the future.

That summary might sound familiar to the Lions, who were unsure if quarterback Matthew Stafford would be available after placing him this week on the COVID-19 reserve list.

”We’re doing some things really well,” coach Matt Patricia said. ”We just have to learn how to finish better. I think that’s true all the way across the board.”

BACKUP PLAN

If Stafford is not cleared in time to play, the Lions would have to choose between Chase Daniel or David Blough. The 34-year-old Daniel has started just five games in his career with seven touchdowns and five interceptions, though he helped lead Chicago to a 16-6 victory over the Vikings last season by going 22 of 30 with a touchdown in relief of an injured Mitch Trubisky.

Blough went 0-5 as a starter last year when Stafford was out with a broken back, with four touchdown passes and six interceptions after the undrafted rookie was acquired from Cleveland. That included a loss at Minnesota, when Blough had one touchdown, was sacked five times and intercepted twice in a 20-7 loss.

REMEMBER THEM?

Everson Griffen expected to face his former team this month, but the reunion was moved up two weeks when Dallas traded him to Detroit. The 11th-year defensive end with 77 career sacks will make his debut with the Lions on Sunday, a convenient addition to the lineup with defensive end Trey Flowers going on short-term injured reserve.

In addition to Peterson and Griffen, backup safety Jayron Kearse will make his return to Minnesota. Griffen could find himself lined up across from Vikings left tackle Riley Reiff, who’s been blocking as well as ever in his fourth season with the team. He played his first five years with the Lions.

HALL PASS

Marvin Hall has taken only one-fourth of Detroit’s offensive snaps, behind Marvin Jones, Kenny Golladay, Danny Amendola and rookie Quintez Cephus, but he has given the Lions a legitimate deep threat with an average of 24 yards per catch. With Golladay hampered by a hip injury this week, Hall could find more opportunity against a struggling Vikings secondary.

”The thing that he brings for us is speed,” Lions offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell said. ”You can feel it, and that can really change some things in the back end.”

CORNERBACK CRUNCH

The Vikings, who have surrendered 30.6 points per game for the fourth-worst average in the league and rank third-to-last in passing yards allowed, have been fighting a dual challenge of inexperience and injuries at cornerback all season. The only one who has played in every game is rookie starter Jeff Gladney. Chris Jones, a recent waiver claim from the Lions, could see his first action for Minnesota with five other cornerbacks dealing with injuries this week.

HOMEWORK TIME

The Vikings have lost five straight at U.S. Bank Stadium, since beating Blough and the Lions on Dec. 8, 2019. That’s their longest such streak since 2011 and approaching the franchise record, set between the 1966-67 seasons when the Vikings lost six consecutive games at Metropolitan Stadium and tied a seventh before stopping the skid.

Zimmer spoke to the players this week about restoring their home-field edge, even if the absence of fans has negated the usual noise advantage.

”We need to bring our own energy. We need to bring our own excitement. We need to play like the fans are there,” Zimmer said. ”Hopefully they can do it through it through osmosis or something.”

More AP NFL coverage: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP-NFL

Copyright 2020 STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

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Toronto FC: Everything "caught up with us" in playoffs exit, already looking to 2021 – MLSsoccer.com

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Toronto FC, simply put, didn’t have the sharpness required to keep dancing in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs.

Head coach Greg Vanney was quick to acknowledge that after the East’s No. 2 seed got upset by Nashville SC, the East’s No. 7 seed, on Tuesday night in a 1-0 defeat at Rentschler Field. The Round One game-winner didn’t arrive until Daniel Rios scored in the 108th minute for the expansion side, but they generated plenty of chances throughout and had three would-be goals called back via offside decisions.

Everything that this season threw Toronto’s way reached a tipping point, Vanney said.

“I think our guys put an incredible shift in over the course of the body of work of the regular season,” Vanney said. “In the end, pushing, things caught up with us a little bit. Some of what you would call our top players, our guys that are difference-makers, our guys who are important to us in getting results in big games were in an out with injuries, starting to come back in the tail end of the season and I felt like we lacked a little bit of fitness, we lacked a little bit of sharpness, a little bit of continuity at times tonight. 

“That might have been part of why we were a little bit slow in some of our actions and didn’t connect as fast as we normally would or would like to, maybe some of that fluid combination play just wasn’t as sharp, so I think we hit the tail end.”

Highlights: Toronto FC 0, Nashville SC 1 (AET)

Toronto were hit hard by injuries down the stretch, and it showed with the club going 1W-3L to end the year. The 2019 MLS Cup finalists were in the running for the Supporters’ Shield until Decision Day presented by AT&T, but they trended in the wrong direction as single-elimination soccer neared.

Club captain and center mid Michael Bradley took stock of the match in a similar light, noting Toronto couldn’t solve the riddle posed by Nashville. The Reds were credited with 850 passes to Nashville’s 530 and had nearly 62% of the possession, but were outshot 21-10. It was a case study in how those first two stats don’t always tell the whole story.

“By and large we had decent control of the game, but we weren’t able to really put them on their heels consistently enough,” Bradley said. “We weren’t able to really create situations of wave after wave of really being dangerous. Look, they’re defensively a good team, a team that understands who they are and what they’re about and they don’t give away a ton of goals and they don’t give away a ton of chances.”

Now, after spending the last few months playing in East Hartford, Connecticut – travel conditions with Canada around the COVID-19 pandemic meant TFC set up camp stateside – they’re looking ahead. Vanney highlighted as much, with Toronto denied a chance at a fourth MLS Cup appearance in the last five years.

“Obviously the playoffs will sting a great deal, just because we feel like we have a team that has quality and we should do better, so that will hurt,” Vanney said. “But we’ll lick our wounds, we’ll regroup, we’ll continue to try make the team better and then set afoot again next year for another journey. 

“Hopefully it won’t look like this year, and hopefully we’ll be able to get back into our stadium and hopefully teams will be playing in front of fans and some of that excitement will be driven back into the stadiums and the games and all that stuff. Hopefully it will look like a different season, but the guys will get themselves turned around and ready for another year when that time is right.”

Bradley assumed a similar tact, hoping that public heath in 2021 allows for more games at BMO Field. At the same time, he stressed they don’t want to make any excuses for exiting in Round One. 

“I think when you look at the news that’s come out in the last week or two in terms of some of these vaccines, you certainly hope that as we move deeper and deeper into 2021, that little by little the world can start to return to a new normal,” Bradley said. “Certainly, what that will mean for us as a team and as a club, hopefully getting back to playing at BMO Field as soon as possible with fans at a certain point. So we’re certainly very excited about the prospect of that and hopefully that’s coming quickly.”



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Fred Sasakamoose, Indigenous NHL trailblazer, dies at 86 after battle with Covid-19 – CNN

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“This Covid virus just did so much damage into his lungs, he just couldn’t keep responding, his body just couldn’t keep up,” Sasakamoose’s Neil said in the video.
Sasakamoose played 11 games for the Chicago Black Hawks during the 1953-54 season, according to NHL’s website. He is widely believed to be the first Indigenous player in the league’s history, though the NHL tells CNN this is impossible to determine.

NHL honors a trailblazer

An outpouring of respect has come from across the NHL following the news of Sasakamoose’s death.
“That lasting impact of his legacy will forever be celebrated and continue to bring people together for generations to come,” the Black Chicago Hawks organization said on its website. “To the entire Sasakamoose family that includes his wife, Loretta, four children and over 100 grandchildren and great-grandchildren, the Chicago Blackhawks organization extends our deepest condolences.”
Craig Conroy #22 of the Calgary Flames and Alexei Zhamnov #13 of the Chicago Blackhawks pose for the ceremonial face off being dropped by Fred Sasakamoose at the United Center on October 19, 2002.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement that Sasakamoose was the first Cree player to appear in an NHL game at age 19. Sasakamoose then dedicated his life to “serving the First Nations community — using hockey and other sports to provide opportunities for Indigenous youth,” Bettman said.
“The story of Sasakamoose’s groundbreaking, 11-game NHL career with the Chicago Black Hawks in 1953-54 was the culmination of years of dedication to overcoming adversity in pursuit of a dream, and the pivot point at which he turned his focus to helping others pursue their dreams,” Bettman said.
Bryan Trottier, who is also of Indigenous heritage and is a Hockey Hall of Fame center, called Sasakamoose “a pioneer, somebody looked at with First Nation blood who was an achiever, broke barriers,” according to NHL’s website.
“He didn’t realize how inspiring he was, which makes him a humble man, which, to me, is much like Jean Beliveau and Gordie Howe and all of those guys who we hold in such high regard,” Trottier said.
Fred Sasakamoose reacts as he is presented with a check for Johnny's Jems and Jets Hockey team during a ceremony celebrating at the United Center on October 19, 2002 in Chicago, Illinois. Fred Sasakamoose reacts as he is presented with a check for Johnny's Jems and Jets Hockey team during a ceremony celebrating at the United Center on October 19, 2002 in Chicago, Illinois.
Reggie Leach, who played for the Boston Bruins, California Golden Seals, Philadelphia Flyers and Detroit Red Wings, said he didn’t know about Sasakamoose until he was 16. He felt proud to be of First Nation heritage when he found out about Sasakamoose, the NHL website said.
“He was one of the players that we wanted to be like him and play in the National Hockey League,” Leach said. “He accomplished his goal and that was a big feat at that time in the 50s, being First Nation and playing in the NHL. If you think back, it’s unbelievable the things he had to go through and what he went through going to residential school and accomplishing what he did. It’s just amazing.”
Residential schools “were part of a government-sponsored, religious education system designed to assimilate the country’s Indigenous children. The schools, which began in the 1880s and closed in 1996, were rife with abuse,” according to the NHL.
The Blackhawks honored Sasakamoose in 2002 and the Edmonton Oilers did the same in 2014 as part of their Celebration of First Nations Hockey, the NHL said.
Sasakamoose was inducted into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame in 2007, according to the NHL.

Father seemed in good spirits hours before death

Neil spoke to his father on the telephone mere hours before his passing and said he seemed in good spirits and was unafraid of what may lie ahead.
“I’m not scared, I’m ready to go, if I gotta go, I’m going to go,” Neil recalled his father saying.
“You know what, dad? If you’re tired, you go. You go and don’t worry about us over here. You go. If you’re getting tired and you’re getting beat up and your body is fighting, you go ahead and you go,” Neil told his father.
Neil said his mother Loretta — his father’s partner of 65 years — was currently in lockdown, as were Neil’s sisters. Prior to his death, Sasakamoose lived on the Ahathkakoop Cree Nation reserve in Saskatchewan.
Sasakamoose has an autobiography scheduled to release in the spring of 2021, titled “Call Me Indian: From the Trauma of Residential School to Becoming the NHL’s First Treaty Indigenous Player.”

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Toronto FC’s season ends with stunning loss to Nashville SC in extra time – Sportsnet.ca

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EAST HARTFORD, Conn. — Toronto FC saw its Major League Soccer season end Tuesday, dropping a 1-0 extra time decision to Nashville SC in playoff action.

Toronto was heavily favoured heading into the game, having finished the regular season with a 13-5-5 record, the second-best in the league.

Nashville’s Daniel Rios scored in the 108th minute to secure the expansion club’s victory at TFC’s temporary home in East Hartford, Conn.

Toronto defenders tied up Nashville’s Hany Mukhtar in deep, but couldn’t stop the German designated player from getting a shot off. Goalkeeper Quentin Westberg made a stop but couldn’t control the rebound, which Rios tapped in to the net.

Westberg had held fast through a Nashville blitz to close out regulation, making a stunning stop on Alex Muyl in the final minute to force extra time. The `keeper had five saves for Toronto.

Nashville goalkeeper Joe Willis stopped five on-target shots.

Tuesday marked the first-ever meeting for the two sides, coming after Nashville advanced through the play-in round with a 3-0 win over Inter Miami CF on Friday.

The upstart club posted an 8-7-8 record in regular-season play, finishing in seventh spot in the East.

Toronto nearly found the back of the net early in extra time when Richie Lareya sent a beautiful ball across the six-yard box to Ayo Akinola, who couldn’t quite catch up to the pass to tap it in.

Mukhtar did ripple the netting for Nashville in the 100th minute, sending a shot high over Westberg and in.

But on the sideline, the offside flag was raised. It was the third time a Nashville goal had been called off in Tuesday’s game.

The visiting squad also appeared to take a lead early in the second half after Auro Jr,. was called for taking down Mukhtar in TFC territory.

Daniel Lovitz took the ensuing free kick, landing a ball on the head of Jhonder Cadiz at the back post. Cadiz headed it in and reveled in the play with his teammates before the goal was called off.

Toronto started the game slowly, controlling possession but content to stay outside Nashville’s 18-yard box to begin the game.

Nashville briefly appeared to open the scoring in the 13th minute after Lovitz sent a cross in to Cadiz, who sent a header deep in to the Toronto net. His celebration was quickly cut short by a raised offside flag.

Back at the other end of the field, TFC began to open up the game midway through the half, systematically breaking down the Nashville defence.

A strong back end has been key for Nashville all year and the club conceded just 22 goals in regular-season play.

Nick DeLeon got a prime chance to put Toronto on the board in the 26th minute, putting a hefty shot on net from the top of the six-yard box, but Willis made the save.

TFC controlled possession through the first 45 minutes of the game and had the only shot on target heading into the half.

There were some tense moments for Toronto fans watching from home in the 32nd minute, however, when Jonathan Osorio got tangled up with Muyl in the middle of the field. A bit of a skirmish followed and a replay appeared to show Osorio kicking out at the Nashville midfielder. Instead of showing Osorio a red card, referee Robert Sibiga allowed play to continue.

NOTES: Tuesday’s game was the fourth of the MLS playoffs to go to extra time… Pablo Piatti and Laryea returned to Toronto’s lineup after missing time with injuries… Nashville midfielder Anibal Godoy was unavailable for Tuesday’s game after suffering a hamstring injury on Friday.

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