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2018 World Cup Off to a Hot Start 0

Posted on June 21, 2018 by Dean Hybl
Cristiano Ronaldo scored three goals in his first action in the 2018 World Cup.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored three goals in his first action in the 2018 World Cup.

The 2018 FIFA World Cup is off to a great start as close decisions are proving to be the norm. Of the first 20 games played, 13 have been decided by one goal and there have been three games finishing in a draw. Included among the decisions have been a number of upsets that could lead to some surprising teams advancing to the next round.

As the most watched global sporting event outside of the Olympics and a favorite for sports betting, the close games and upsets have made it an interesting week for betting sites and world cup predictions.

The hosts from Russia have been statistically the most dominant team so far in the tournament as they have scored eight goals and allowed only one in two wins. However, their two opponents (Saudi Arabia and Egypt) are not considered to be contenders. The fourth team in that bracket, Uruguay is also 2-0, though both wins were 1-0 shutouts. Russia and Uruguay will play on Monday and that game could provide some insight as to whether Russia can be a contender moving forward.

Perhaps the most surprising result of the tournament so far has been the 1-0 victory by Mexico over defending champion Germany. It will be crucial for Germany to bounce back in their next two games against Sweden and South Korea.

One thing that hasn’t been too much of a surprise so far has been the play of Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo. Arguably the best player in the world, Renaldo scored three goals in a 3-3 draw between Portugal and Spain. He then scored the only goal in a 1-0 victory over Morocco. He will need to continue his magic in the next game against Iran to ensure that Portugal will advance to the next round. Read the rest of this entry →

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    • Paul Warfield: The Perfect Receiver
      December 10, 2018 | 3:36 pm

      Warfield-DolphinsThe Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month was perfection personified as a wide receiver during his NFL career.

      Known for his fluid movement, grace and jumping ability during his 13 year NFL career, Paul Warfield was an eight-time Pro Bowl selection and key performer for the Miami Dolphins during their 17-0 campaign in 1972.

      Because the role of the wide receiver has changed so much and today’s star receivers get the ball thrown to them so many more times than in the pre-1978 era, Warfield is often overlooked when discussing all-time greats.

      But, think about this. Warfield averaged 20.1 yards per catch for his career (427 receptions, 8,565 yards) and 19.9% of his receptions went for touchdowns (85). By comparison, Julio Jones has averaged 15.5 yards per catch for his career and a touchdown in 6.9% of his receptions (46 TDs in 669 catches). Antonio Brown averages 13.4 ypc and a TD in 8.7% (70 of 804) of his receptions. Terrell Owens averaged 14.8 ypc and a TD in 14.2% of his receptions. Even Jerry Rice, considered the greatest receiver of all-time, averaged only 14.8 ypc and a TD in 12.7% of his catches.

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