MELBOURNE, Australia - Australian Open organizers are confident they have weather proofed the first tennis major of the season with the unveiling of the third stadium with a retractable roof at Melbourne Park. Steve Nash Jersey
.The 7,500-seat Margaret Court Arena was officially opened Tuesday on the site of the previous show court next to Rod Laver Arena, which also has a retractable roof. It is the first Grand Slam venue to have three courts which can be covered in the event of rain or extreme heat, which is important in a continent of scorching droughts and flooding rains.The temperature topped 40 Celsius (104 F) for four straight days during last years tournament in the longest heat wave in Melbourne for more than a century. Heavy rain in the past has also caused lengthy delays in the match schedule.We have an incredible new tennis facility, Tennis Australia president Steve Healy said of the rebuilt Margaret Court Arena. Just like the Australian living legend it is named after, this venue is world class and does Australian tennis proud.Court, formerly Margaret Smith, won 24 Grand Slam singles titles — including 11 in the Open Era. In 1970, she became the first woman in the Open Era to win all four majors in the same calendar year. The only other women to complete the Grand Slam by winning all four majors in a calendar year are Maureen Connolly (1953) and Steffi Graf (1988).Organizers said the retractable roof on the MCA can open in less than five minutes, which is faster than the covers on Rod Laver and Hisense Arena, two other main show courts at Melbourne Park.The design inspiration for the roof was the pleats of a traditional tennis skirt, and the elevated concourse looks back across the Yarra River and the city.Tickets will go on sale for day and night sessions on the MCA for the first eight days of the tournament, which starts Jan. 19.Organizers also announced a 10 per cent increase in total prize money for the players in local currency terms, with the mens and womens champions each earning $3 million Australian dollars ($2.63 million). Shaquille ONeal Jersey
. -- So much for concern that running back Marshawn Lynch would be absent from the Seattle Seahawks minicamp. Brandon Knight Jersey
. The Montreal Alouettes announced Tuesday that they have acquired the return specialist from Calgary, as well as the Stampeders fifth-round draft pick in the 2014 CFL Canadian Draft. http://www.basketballsunsauthority.com/marquese-chriss-suns-jersey-c-12/
.ca. Kerry, In the first period of Saturdays Montreal-Ottawa game, Brendan Gallagher is called for goaltender interference. Craig Anderson is outside the blue paint trying to make the save.PHILADELPHIA -- Florida Panthers general manager Dale Tallon kept everyone guessing right up to his announcement to open Fridays NHL draft. "We proudly select, with the first pick overall of the 2014 NHL draft from the Ontario Hockey League," Tallon told a feisty full house at Wells Fargo Arena. And then he paused for dramatic effect. "Aaron Ekblad," Tallon finally pronounced. "I did not know. I was freaking out there for a second when he stopped," said Ekblad, a normally unflappable 18-year-old defenceman from Belle River, Ont., seen as perhaps the most NHL-ready player in the draft pool. "It was breath-taking to say the least." Said a straight-faced Tallon: "I thought we were in show-business. This is entertainment isnt it?" "I made Ekblad sweat a little," he added. With Kingston Frontenacs forward Sam Bennett ranked No. 1 ahead of Ekblad among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting, there was Ontario competition for the top pick. Bennett eventually went fourth to the Calgary Flames. Kootenay Ice centre Sam Reinhart went second to the Buffalo Sabres and Prince Albert Raiders forward Leon Draisaitl was selected third by the Edmonton Oilers. Draisaitl becomes the highest-drafted German-born player in NHL history. Previously that honour was held by Marcel Goc, taken 20th overall by San Jose in 2001. Tallon had two "really substantial" offers for his pick, but elected to stick with the big Barrie Colts blue-liner. "We decided at noon we were going to go this way," he said. Ekblad, who spent three seasons with the Colts, is seen as a potential franchise defenceman who is ahead of many of his fellow juniors in terms of size, strength and maturity. The teenager with Hollywood good looks feels he can help the Panthers in the fall. "Ive said that from the very beginning that I believe in myself and Im confident," he said. "I think if you dont believe in yourself and youre not confident, youre putting yourself behind the eight-ball right off the bat. I believe that if I work hard this summer, I can really step into the NHL next year. Obviously Im going to need a lot of help and its going to be a learning curve, but again Im confident in myself." The six-foot-three 216-pound Ekblad, granted exceptional player status by Hockey Canada to enter the OHL at just 15, had 23 goals, 30 assists and 91 penalty minutes in 58 games last season. Ekblad says he plays "strong responsible defence" while trying to contribute on offence. He is the 13th defenceman to go first overall in the draft and the first since 2006 when St. Louis took Erik Johnson. The Panthers (29-45-8) won the draft lottery ahead of Buffalo (21-51-10) to kick off the draft for the first time since 1994 when they selected defenceman Ed Jovanovski, now 38 and on his second stint in south Florida. Florida also won the draft lottery in 2002 and 2003, but traded away the pick both years. There was a run on blue-liners in the 90s with Roman Hamrlik (1992, Tampa Bay), Jovanovski (1994, Florida), Bryan Berard (1995, Ottawa) and Chris Phillips (1996, Ottawa) all going first overall. The Panthers will be hoping to repeat the success of Colorado last year with the first pick. Centre Nathan MacKinnon jumped directly to the NHL from the Halifax Mooseheads, winning the Calder Memorial Trophy as top rookie along the way. Dan Majerle Jersey
. After Bennett, Oshawa Generals winger Michael Dal Colle went to the New York Islanders and Calgary Hitmen winger Jake Virtanen became a Vancouver Canuck. Red Deer defenceman Haydn Fleury was chosen seventh overall by the Carolina Hurricanes, ahead of Modo forward William Nylander (Toronto), Halifax winger Nikolaj Ehlers (Winnipeg) and Peterborough winger Nick Ritchie (Anaheim in a pick obtained earlier from Ottawa). Ehlers becomes the second-highest drafted Danish-born player in NHL history after Mikkel Boedker, picked eighth overall by Phoenix in 2008. The Canucks selected Sault Ste. Marie centre Jared McCann with the 24th overall pick and the Montreal Canadiens took Russian winger Nikita Scherbak of the Saskatoon Blades with the 26th selection. Ottawa did not have a first-round pick, having traded it to Anaheim in the Bobby Ryan deal. After Fridays first round, there will be six more rounds Saturday. Apart from Tallons cheeky delay at the mic, there were few other surprises. The top names all went high. Ekblad was ranked second among draft prospects by the International Scouting Services, which had Reinhart No. 1. Reinhart, an 18-year-old from North Vancouver, is seen as an elite playmaker with good skating and puck skills. The six-foot-one 185-pounder, named WHL player of the year in 2013-14, has true hockey bloodlines. Brother Max was selected by the Calgary Flames in the third round (63rd overall) in the 2010 draft, while brother Griffin was chosen fourth overall by the Islanders in 2012. Father Paul, a 12th-round draft pick of the Atlanta Flames in 1979, played 11 NHL seasons with the Flames and Canucks. The crowd at Wells Fargo Center started a "Lets Go Flyers" chant before the opening roll call of teams. Every other team was greeted with the word "Sucks" as their name was announced -- with the exception of Pittsburgh and Boston, who drew deafening boos. Comcast president Dave Scott, head of the company that owns the Flyers, congratulated the Los Angeles Kings on winning the Stanley Cup -- and defeating the rival Rangers in the final. The feisty crowd loved the kicker. Commissioner Gary Bettman was booed long and loud when he took the stage. "I love your passion," said the unflappable commissioner. The crowd kept booing and Bettman kept up the one-liners as the evening wore on. The Canucks stole much of the pre-draft thunder earlier Friday, sending centre Ryan Kesler to Anaheim and defenceman Jason Garrison to Tampa Bay while acquiring forward Derek Dorsett from the Rangers. For Ekblad, it was "by far the longest day of my entire life." But it ended well. He is the sixth OHL player drafted No. 1 overall in the last eight years, following in the footsteps of Patrick Kane, Steve Stamkos, John Tavares, Taylor Hall and Nail Yakupov. NOTES: The 30 players selected in the first round were born in 10 different countries: Canada (14), United States (five), Czech Republic (two), Finland (two), Russia (two), Denmark (one), England (one), Germany (one), Sweden (one) and Switzerland (one) ... Eight of the first 10 overall picks, including all of the first seven, came from the Ontario Hockey League or Western Hockey League. Ehlers (ninth overall) was the only one from the QMJHL. Cheap Chargers Jerseys Cheap Rams Jersey Cheap Dolphins Jerseys Cheap Vikings Jerseys Cheap Patriots Jersey Cheap Saints Jerseys Cheap New York Giants Jerseys Cheap Jets Jerseys Cheap Raiders Jerseys Cheap Eagles Jerseys Cheap Steelers Jerseys Cheap 49ers Jerseys Cheap Seahawks Jerseys Cheap Buccaneers Jerseys Cheap Titans Jerseys Cheap Redskins Jerseys
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