Final High School Lites Preview

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Final High School Lites Preview

We have come to the end of the road on Comcast SportsNets High School Lites for the 2011-12 season. We have brought you highlights of close to 400 basketball and football games since August (393 to be exact), along with numerous interviews and features.

We will head to the United Center for our final two games of the season. Check out highlights and postgame reaction from the Illinois State High School Hockey Championships, presented by Hinckley Springs. In the 4:00 p.m. girls championship, New Trier takes on Lake Forest while St. Viator battles St. Rita in the boys varsity title game. The puck drop on that one is set for 6:30 p.m. and can be seen on Comcast SportsNet. Judd Sirott and Steve Konroyd will call the action while Chris Boden handles in-game interviews on the ice.

Be sure to tune in for the latest episode of Drive: The Simeon Wolverines, presented by Greater Than. Jabari Parker and company were the wire-to-wire No. 1 prep basketball team in Chicagoland. Our cameras went behind the scenes with Simeon in Peoria and well show you how the students celebrated at the school this week.

In our Muscle Milk Team of the Week segment, we head out to Hoffman Estates to profile the Conant Cougars softball team. This northwest suburban school has been a softball powerhouse of late, and this years team features two sisters who could take the team deep into spring postseason action.

As always, we will also take a drive down Memory Lane in our Flashback segment, and we will also take a look back at the top plays of the basketball season.

And just think: were only months away from football season starting again! Comcast SportsNet will be back with high school gridiron action in August.

We welcome your story ideas as well. Drop us a line at: csnchicagowebsite@comcastsportsnet.com

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Cubs visit White House as World Series champions

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Cubs visit White House as World Series champions

On the latest edition of the SportsTalk Live Podcast, David Kaplan is joined by David Haugh (Chicago Tribune) and Jason Goch (SB Nation Radio) to discuss the Cubs' visit to the White House.

The guys reflect on the historic day and Theo Epstein's speech. Then, the panel breaks down the Packers' impressive run and question whether it's okay for Bears fans to appreciate Aarond Rodgers and company.

Finally, are the Wild the Blackhawks' biggest threat come playoff time?

Listen to the SportsTalk Live podcast below.

 

Fire trade for midfielder Dax McCarty

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USA TODAY

Fire trade for midfielder Dax McCarty

Midfield has been an area of focus this offseason for Chicago Fire general manager Nelson Rodriguez and another new addition to that group was added on Monday.

The Fire have traded $400,000 in general allocation money in return for midfielder Dax McCarty from the New York Red Bulls. Paul Tenorio of Four Four Two first reported the trade.

McCarty was an All-Star in 2015 and part of the league's Best XI that season when he had eight assists to go with a goal. Last season he made 26 starts for the Red Bulls and totaled three goals and had five assists.

"Since the middle of 2016, we made acquiring Dax our No. 1 priority," Rodr√≠guez said in the club's press release. "We believe adding his character and leadership in the locker room, as well as his exceptional soccer abilities on the field, dramatically improves our team."

The last time McCarty played at Toyota Park was a 2-2 draw on July 31 when a Khaly Thiam tackle caused a fractured tibia, which forced McCarty to sit out a month.

McCarty got married on Saturday, which delayed his arrival to the current U.S. national team camp. McCarty's participation in national team camp means he will join the Fire's preseason already in progress. The final match of the camp is on Feb. 3 while the Fire are set to start preseason on January 23.

McCarty, 29, has spent the past five and a half seasons with the Red Bulls. He began his career by playing five seasons for FC Dallas and was with D.C. United for part of the 2011 campaign before being traded to the Red Bulls. As an 11-year league veteran and the Red Bulls' captain, McCarty adds leadership and experience which Rodriguez has prioritized this offseason.

The Fire already added a former MLS All-Star in midfield this offseason in Juninho. The pair could line up next to each other in the preferred 4-2-3-1 coach Veljko Paunovic used for most of last season. This also could potentially put Matt Polster's role with the team in question. As the roster stands now, the third-year midfielder would be competing for two veteran All-Star caliber midfielders who were brought in at a high price.

Not to suggest a position move is in the works for Polster, but he did split time between midfield and right back with the Fire in 2015 under coach Frank Yallop and played there for the U-23 national team in Olympic qualifying. Right back remains a position of need by Rodriguez's own admission.

The trade also adds further context to the Fire trading the No. 3 pick in the draft on Friday. The Fire swapped the pick for $250,000 in general allocation money from New York City FC and Tenorio is reporting the Fire will send $400,000 to the Red Bulls for McCarty. To add those two moves together, the Fire dealt the No. 3 overall pick and $150,000 of allocation money for McCarty.