Former NFL RB Isaiah Pead eyes 2020 Paralympics

Former NFL running back Isaiah Pead has set his sights on success at the 2020 Paralympics.

Pead, who played in the NFL from 2012-16 with the then-St. Louis Rams and Miami Dolphins, had his left leg amputated partly up his thigh in November 2016 following a serious car accident.

The 28-year-old, who has been learning to sprint with a prosthetic leg, has entertained thoughts of competing after winning state championships in the 100 and 400 meters in high school.

“I was talking to my friends and it was like, ‘What’s your goals?'” Pead told TMZ Sports. “If they let me on the track, I’m going for the gold, period.”

Pead has loftier goals than that, too. He has eyed the 2024 and 2028 Paralympics.

“Three gold medals, three Paralympics. God willing, that’s a hell of a career right there,” he said.

Pead is nearly a year-and-a-half removed from a serious car accident in Columbus, Ohio. He was in critical condition after losing control of his Cadillac CTS before driving off the side of Interstate 670 in November 2016.

According to NBC4, Pead’s car went through a guardrail and down an embankment, striking several trees along the way. Pead was ejected from the vehicle.

A second-round pick of the Rams in the 2012 NFL Draft, Pead played in 30 career games, rushing for 100 yards on 27 carries and catching 15 passes for 100 yards.

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Flyers' Konecny scores unbelievable goal vs. Bruins

April 2 (UPI) — Philadelphia Flyers center Travis Konecny scored an astounding goal, handling the puck through traffic against the Boston Bruins.

Konecny pulled off the score Sunday in the Flyers’ 4-3 win against the Bruins at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia.

The Flyers led 1-0 at the start of the second period. Konecny took a pass from defender Ivan Provorov on the left flank, deep in Bruins territory. He tapped the puck up in the air and skated to his right, cutting between Bruins right wing David Pastrnak and center Noel Acciari.

He then swiped the puck in front of center Patrice Bergeron, before picking it up behind Bergeron’s skates. Konecny then fired a shot, beating net minder Anton Khudobin through the five-hole.

Claude Giroux gave Philadelphia a 1-0 lead at the 9:38 mark in the first period, beating Khudobin on a one-timer. Acciari hit a one-timer to give the Bruins a score after Konecny’s finish.

The Bruins went up 3-1 on Nolan Patrick’s tally at 5:31 in the third period. But David Pastrnak and Bergeron tied the score at 3-3 before the final horn, forcing the game to overtime.

Giroux finished off the Bruins, scoring with 1:21 remaining in the extra period.

“Obviously it’s a huge two points for is,” Flyers coach Dave Hakstol told reporters after the game. “Probably had to finish it a little bit differently than we wanted to, but at the end of the day we did finish it and got the two points.”

Konecny has 24 goals and 23 assists in 78 games this season. Last season he registered 11 goals and 17 assists in 70 appearances.

The Flyers face the New York Islanders at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

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Cardinals sign German DL Djeri

The Arizona Cardinals apparently are looking for talent all over the world, because they just signed a player from Germany who has never played in the United States.

The Cardinals announced Wednesday they signed defensive lineman Moubarak Djeri, who played this past season in the German Football League. That season runs from April to October.

The 6-foot-3, 275-pound Djeri had 12 sacks, 40 tackles, 10 tackles for loss and a pair of forced fumbles for the Cologne Crocodiles in 2017.

“It was a big dream, and right now it’s life,” Djeri said of signing an NFL contract, according to the Cardinals’ website. “I’m so excited to be here.”

Djeri, 22, was born in Togo and moved to Germany when he was 11 as part of a student exchange program.

Djeri said he became interested in American football after watching it on television when he was 6 years old.

He started playing football in Cologne, Germany, at the age of 18.

Djeri knows moving to the NFL represents a major jump in the level of competition.

“I know the NFL is much faster than the league I played in before,” Djeri said. “But I’m going to keep working.”

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Man runs on field, kisses Cristiano Ronaldo

March 27 (UPI) — A male fan ran out of the stands and onto the field to kiss Cristiano Ronaldo during Portugal’s 3-0 loss to the Netherlands.

The scene went down Monday in the 62nd minute of the friendly at Stade de Geneve in Geneva, Switzerland. Ronaldo was standing at midfield during a stoppage in play when a few fans invaded the pitch. One of them ran up to the superstar and put his left arm around his neck, before trying to kiss him on the mouth.

He might have succeeded.

Ronaldo lightly pushed the fan away as he started taking selfies of the exchange. Another two fans also came up and hugged Ronaldo, before being taken away by security.

Memphis Depay, Rya Babel and Virgil van Dijk each scored first half goals in the victory. Portugal’s Joao Cancelo received a red card in the 61st minute. Ronaldo also left at that point, being substituted out of the match.

Monday’s game marked the first time in 10 matches — for club or country — that Ronaldo didn’t score a goal.

“We are sad, but it is important to find positive points in defeats,” Portugal manager Fernando Santos said after the match, according to the team’s Twitter account.

Portugal battles Tunisia in another friendly at 4 p.m. on Wednesday.

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Danica Patrick shares birthday party photos with Aaron Rodgers

March 27 (UPI) — Sports power couple Aaron Rodgers and Danica Patrick were together this week to celebrate Patrick’s birthday.

The retiring NASCAR driver and the All-Pro quarterback held up their glasses for a photo, which Patrick posted Monday on her Instagram feed.

“I love getting older!!!!!!!!!!! Super grateful for all the love around me in my life! People, work, opportunities, dreams…full heart space! Don’t forget to dream big for the things you want in your life,” Patrick wrote for the caption.

Patrick stood with a glass of champagne in hand, alongside Rodgers and 10 others for the group shot, the first in a series of four photos she posted. Her second photo featured her with five women, while the third showed off her two-tiered unicorn cake.

Patrick’s final photo was of her No. 3 and No. 6 balloons.

Rodgers turns 35-years-old in December. The Green Bay Packers gunslinger spends a lot of his Sunday’s at Lambeau Field, which is located about three hours north of Patrick’s hometown: Beloit, Wisc.

Rumors of the Rodgers-Patrick union swirled this winter, before the couple announced their relationship. Rodgers and actress Olivia Munn broke up in April after three years of dating.

“When you are living out a relationship in the public eye, it’s definitely … it’s difficult,” Rodgers said in an August ESPN interview.

“It has some extra constraints, because you have other opinions about your relationship, how if affects your work, and you know, just some inappropriate connections.”

Patrick’s divorce from her only marriage was finalized in 2013, before she started dating fellow NASCAR driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Patrick and Stenhouse ended their relationship in December.

Rodgers was on hand to watch his race car-driving girlfriend compete in February’s Daytona 500, her final race in the sport. Patrick will wrap up her IndyCar career on May 27 in the 2018 Indianapolis 500.

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Zion Williamson: High school basketball phenom wins dunk-off

March 27 (UPI) — High school basketball phenom Zion Williamson won the 2018 McDonald’s All-American Dunk Contest with a flurry of high-flying antics.

The 6-foot-7 Duke commit took flight Monday night at Morehouse College’s Forbes Arena in Atlanta, Ga. Williamson, 17, is the No. 2 player out of all high school basketball recruits in the class of 2018, according to the ESPN100.

He competed against Nassir Little, Olivia Nelson-Odoba, Jahvon Quinerly, Devon Dotson, Darius Garland, Keldon Johnson and Quintin Grimes.

Williamson – – who is already a viral dunking sensation with 1.4 million Instagram followers – – began his night by bouncing the ball under the rim and casually throwing down a one-handed 360-degree slam with his left hand.

He received all 10s for that forceful flush.

On his next dunk, Williamson threw the ball off of the right side of the backboard. He went up and caught the ball before putting it between his legs in midair and throwing it through tenet with his left hand.

He received a few 9s on that dunk.

Williamson’s next slam was his most powerful. He ran in from beyond the 3-point line before jumping up in the pain. He corked the basketball way back with his right hand before slamming it over the rim.

The 10s came back for that attempt.

Williamson attempted a nasty 360-degree one-handed slam on his next attempt, before just deciding to throw down a reverse dunk. His previous dunks were good enough to earn him top prize at the event.

Previous winners of the high school dunk competition include: LeBron James, DeMar DeRozan, Carmelo Anthony, Baron Davis, Vince Carter, Jerry Stackhouse and Blake Griffin, among other high-risers.

The Spartanburg Day School senior heads to Durham, N.C. this fall as part of the top recruiting class for 2018, which includes R.J. Barrett and Cam Reddish.

“The atmosphere was crazy,” Williamson said at the dunk contest, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “When I was out there dunking, everybody wanted to stand up for some reason. I love crowds like that.”

The 2018 McDonald’s All-American boys game will take place Wednesday at Philips Arena in Atlanta.

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