In his first official practice round at Augusta National, Graham DeLaet got in a great cram session, playing 18 holes alongside Mike Weir. As they walked off the first tee, Weir opened his book of course knowledge to his fellow Canadian, telling him to ask him about anything and everything. For the next four hours, the two talked about the humps and bumps and hills and swales of the famed course, with DeLaet trying to drink in as much information as he could ahead of Thursdays opening round. "It was nice to have Mike kind of showing me around," said DeLaet. "He was giving me guidance on a few things that other players had given him, guys like Jack (Nicklaus) and Freddy (Couples) and stuff along the way. Thats one of the cool things out here that guys kind of pass things along. You go to a regular tournament and guys kind of keep things secretive. But for whatever reason, out here you just kind of pass the torch along. Any time I asked, he was more than happy to point out a few things along the way I wouldnt have known about." And few people know the course better than Mike Weir, who is making his 15th start here this week. However, the 2003 champion cautioned DeLaet that many of his references were specific for his game, not the long-bombing power style that the Weyburn, Sask., native plays. "I wasnt overloading him because our games are so different," said Weir, who thrilled fans by jarring in his tee shot on the 16th hole during the round. "He has more power, hitting shorter irons into greens, while Im probably playing more for position. He can be more aggressive. I told him to be mindful of that. Im telling him out how I play it because Im back there hitting a four-iron." For DeLaet, the chance to play at Augusta National with Weir was more than an exercise in local knowledge, it was also the chance to play with one of his golfing idols. In 2007, when he teed it up in the Canadian Open for the first time, DeLaet managed to get his picture taken with the lefthanded star. Its a picture he keeps hanging on his wall at home to this day. "He was the guy I looked to when I was a kid," admitted DeLaet. "Now I call him my friend. Going around here, the respect he gets from the crowd – and rightfully so – is pretty cool." Now DeLaet has to take all the information and put it to use. His caddy, Julien Trudeau – who also raved about the details Weir passed on – said he and his boss will sit down and formulate a game plan for their opening round. That game plan will also try to take into account the butterflies that will undoubtedly be in DeLaets stomach when he gets set to start his first Masters. "I know that Im going to be nervous, Im nervous at the Byron Nelson tournament," he stated. "I do have a couple of majors under my belt now which is going to help a little bit but I dont know exactly what Im going to feel like on (the first tee) on Thursday but Im looking forward to it." Eddie Murray Jersey
. -- Antoine Bibeau bought the Val-dOr Foreurs valuable time at the Memorial Cup with his 51-save shutout Friday. Ubaldo Jimenez Jersey
. Behind the talents of rookie Johnny Gaudreau, the Flames will look to keep pace Thursday night when they face the Minnesota Wild in the second of a six-game homestand. http://www.oriolesapparelsshop.com/adam ... ersey-c-6/
. Green-Ellis was Cincinnatis leading rusher each of the last two seasons. His role was reduced last year when Giovani Bernard was added to the backfield. Green-Ellis ran for 756 yards and a career-low 3. Manny Machado Jersey
. - Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr has nothing but good problems right now. Cal Ripken Jersey
.Y. -- It was as if Matt Moulson never left the New York Islanders.OTTAWA - Maybe Jaroslav Halak just needed to feel wanted.First the goaltender was second fiddle to Carey Price in Montreal then got pushed out in St. Louis for Ryan Miller. Nothing more than a rental in Washington, Halak last June heard from a team that wanted to turn the reins over to him and invest in him for the long term.Now the New York Islanders are atop the Metropolitan Division, riding the wave of Halaks all-star-calibre play during his franchise record 11-game winning streak.This team showed interest in me and interest in signing me, Halak said. Interest was on both sides, and Im glad it worked out well.It has worked out for the first-place Islanders because general manager Garth Snow was willing to trade a fourth-round pick for Halaks rights two weeks after the regular season ended and even more willing to give him a long-term contract. Halak did his homework on the Islanders, talking to current and former players, and ultimately signed a US$18-million, four-year deal.The season is only 26 games old, but so far that looks like a bargain. At 14-4-0 with a 2.05 goals-against average and .926 save percentage, the former Canadien has stabilized the goaltending position that has gone through so much recent change and fits of inconsistency.Since Ive been here, weve gone through a lot of goalies, and theyve been quality goaltenders, coach Jack Capuano said. But to know that we have a couple guys now back there and hopefully we can stay healthy, its been a big plus for our hockey club.Capuano is referencing backup Chad Johnson, too, but the onus really has been on Halak to shoulder the load for New York. The way the schedule sets up — the Islanders only have one back-to-back for the next month — the fifth-year head coach cant help but want to keep putting Halak on the ice.On Thursday night, the 29-year-old Slovak beat the Ottawa Senators to break Billy Smiths franchise record of consecutive victories with his 11th.Its great to see him break the record and he deserves it, Capuano said. Hes working real hard and hes enjoying himself between the pipes right now.Halak has an intense demeanour on the ice, something captain John Tavares notices when Cal Clutterbuck shoots high on him early in practice. Halak doesnt take too kindly to that.I think you can just tell by his facial expressions, Tavares said.Maybe Halak doesnt smile too much, but hes loving life with the Islanders, who are a world away from where they were a year ago. Back then they were losers of 10 in a row during a season in which they didnt get great goaltending from Evgeni Nabokov, Anders Nilsson or Kevin Poulin.These Islanders underwent significant off-season changes. Snow signed former Maple Leafs forwards Mikhail Grabovski and Nikolai Kulemin, then a few days before opening night traded for defencemen Johnny Boychuk and Nick Leddy.ddddddddddddQuite simply, this is a better team all over the ice.We just play a good poised game, and we have a lot of depth, so were able to come at teams with every line and all our D, Tavares said. We just want to put teams on their heels. We want to play with the puck, obviously. I think the more energy youve got to spend to try to get it back, I think it makes it tough for the other team to generate offence, generate opportunities.Tavares pointed out theres no panic in Halaks game and likewise no panic on the bench or in the locker-room in difficult situations, unlike last season. Theres little doubt the Islanders feed off their No. 1 goaltender.Everyone sort of plays like Jaro a bit, defenceman Thomas Hickey said. Hes quiet in the net and I think it rubs off on us. ... When any goalie’s playing on their game it makes it really easy on the team.Things havent exactly been easy lately, even as the Islanders have been on a roll. Just four of their past nine victories have come in regulation.That speaks to some strong play in close games but also to New Yorks slim margin for error. Halak plays a part in that because hes not prone to giving up soft goals.He makes every save he should, Hickey said. You dont see him making the 10-bell save because hes always in position, he doesnt need to.During this winning streak, which will be on the line Saturday against the St. Louis Blues, Halak has stopped 275 of the 289 shots he has faced (.952 save percentage) and put up a 1.24 GAA.Capuano said Halak was dialed in. Some athletes feel momentum building, but not this one.I dont think about it, Halak said. I go game-by-game. Im always trying to focus on the game thats ahead of me. Whatever happened in the past, happened in the past. Thats great. But back to work tomorrow.Halaks work never stops. Earlier in the season Capuano and goaltending coach Mike Dunham talked to Halak about managing his emotions, and he has done that.I just thought mentally he was a little frustrated, and right now hes in a good place, Capuano said. Hes got high expectations of himself, which is good. Thats what you want.Its no different than a quarterback or different than a starting pitcher. Youre the last line of defence back there. I like the fact that he puts that pressure on himself, but how he channelled in a different way.Halak isnt out of control. In fact, Tavares called him pretty calm.The Islanders have followed that lead.The consistency he brings in his game and the calmness he brings, of course we feed off that, Tavares said. He does such a good job of not giving up second, third chances and swallowing pucks and pushing them off to the side. Both the skaters and the goalie feed off one another, and hes been great for us.---Follow @SWhyno on Twitter Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys
' ' '