CSN & CSNChicago.com to carry live Openng Ceremonies coverage of the 2013 Cubs Convention

CSN & CSNChicago.com to carry live Openng Ceremonies coverage of the 2013 Cubs Convention

COMCAST SPORTSNET & CSNCHICAGO.COM TO CARRY LIVE OPENING CEREMONIES COVERAGE OF THE 2013 CUBS CONVENTION

Comcast SportsNet & CSNChicago.com to air LIVE Opening Ceremonies coverage on Friday, January 18 at 5:00 PM CT -- hosted by David Kaplan

Luke Stuckmeyer to provide complete Convention coverage throughout the weekend on SportsNet Central and CubsTalk

CSNChicago.com Cubs Insider Patrick Mooney and CubsTalk blogger Tony Andracki to provide playercoachesfront office interviews, features, live Tweets & more

Chicago, IL (January 15, 2013) -- Comcast SportsNet, the television home for the most games and most comprehensive coverage of the Chicago Cubs, is ready to start up the 2013 Cubs season in a big way with exclusive, LIVE Opening Ceremonies coverage from the 2013 Cubs Convention, which is being held downtown this weekend (January 18-20) at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers.

On Friday, January 18 beginning at 5:00 PM CT, Comcast SportsNet & CSNChicago.com will provide viewers with every thrill-packed moment of the conventions opening ceremonies featuring introductions of Cubs playerscoachesfront office executives, live interviews with Cubs players following the opening ceremonies, video montages and much more. Comcast SportsNets 2013 Cubs Convention Opening Ceremonies coverage will be hosted by Cubs PrePost Game Live hostChicago Tribune Live host David Kaplan.

In addition, Luke Stuckmeyer will file reports for SportsNet Central (6:30 PM, 10:00 PM, 10:30 PM and midnight) and for CSNChicago.coms CubsTalk section throughout the weekend featuring interviews with Cubs players, coaches and fans. Plus, CSNChicago.coms Cubs Insider Patrick Mooney and CubsTalk blogger Tony Andracki will also provide viewers with comprehensive, real-time online coverage featuring numerous playerscoachesfront office executive interviews, stories, fan reaction, photos, videos and much more. Fans can follow Mooneys Cubs Convention updates all weekend long via Twitter @CSNMooney, along with Kaplan (@thekapman), Stuckmeyer (@LukeStuckmeyer) and AndrackiCubsTalk (@CubsTalkCSN).

Blackhawks re-sign defenseman Ville Pokka to one-year deal

Blackhawks re-sign defenseman Ville Pokka to one-year deal

The Blackhawks signed Ville Pokka to a one-year contract on Tuesday.

The 23-year-old Pokka played in all 76 regular-season games for the Rockford IceHogs last season, recording six goals and 24 assists.

The Blackhawks’ defensive depth has already taken a hit this offseason, with Niklas Hjalmarsson traded to Arizona – Connor Murphy came here in the deal – and Trevor van Riemsdyk, selected by the Vegas Golden Knights, then traded to the Carolina Hurricanes. While the Blackhawks will probably explore free-agent options this offseason, Pokka could vie for an opportunity at training camp.

Are Bears better than Texans, Broncos, Dolphins and others? Pro Football Focus says yes

Are Bears better than Texans, Broncos, Dolphins and others? Pro Football Focus says yes

Pro Football Focus has more than its share of both supporters and detractors of how it goes about grading NFL players. They break down every snap for every player, and while there are general agreements on what's seen by naked, untrained eyes who don't put the time and investment into its system that PFF does, there are other evaluations that seem to come out of the blue. While there's occasional guesswork on a player's particular assignment on a given play within its scheme, those of us who've watched and studied nuances of the game, or those who've played it, can usually identify how many jobs were done correctly.

Tuesday, PFF released its rankings of all 32 NFL rosters but in essence focused on the quality of each team's starting lineup, listing the Bears — are you sitting down? — 18th in the league. That's ahead of the likes of the Ravens, Saints, Texans, Dolphins, a Jaguars franchise that's had tons of high draft picks in recent years, as well as the Broncos and Lions (whom they rank 28th). The top five are the Falcons, Patriots, Titans, Packers and Steelers (the Bears play three of those teams in September alone). Among other Bears opponents, they rank the Panthers 10th, Vikings 12th, Buccaneers 13th and Eagles 15th.

[BEARS TICKETS: Get your seats right here]

Their evaluation is based on each player's final score from last season, "elite" and "good" being the top two levels, followed by "average" and "below average" to "poor." The only Bear earning elite status was inside linebacker Jerrell Freeman. Another nine Bears finished with good grades: Jordan Howard, Zach Miller, Josh Sitton, Cody Whitehair, Akiem Hicks, Eddie Goldman, Danny Trevathan, Adrian Amos and Quintin Demps (who earned his grade in Houston).

Those earning average grades were Cam Meredith, Kendall Wright, Kyle Long, Charles Leno, Jr., Pernell McPhee and Prince Amukamara. Below average: Mike Glennon (in mop-up duty in Tampa Bay), Kevin White, Bobby Massie, Leonard Floyd and Jaye Howard. The only Bear earning a poor grade among projected starters was tight end Dion Sims (with Miami). The other potential flaw is that PFF lists Kyle Fuller (no grade) and Bryce Callahan (average) as starters when Marcus Cooper and Cre'Von LeBlanc likely have the inside track to start at cornerback and nickel back, respectively.

How did the Bears get to 18th, above three playoff teams and another that won the Super Bowl two years ago? Well, all of those other teams have more elite players at certain positions, but it's offset by a number of spots occupied by more players with poor or below average grades. The Broncos (25th) for instance, had four elite players, just another four falling under the good grade, but five players listed as poor.