Leave it to Aqib Talib, their voluble veteran cornerback, to remind his teammates about the upside of the New Orleans fans' famed investment in the game.,They'll need every bit of Talib's expertise and skill when they attempt to slow Drew Brees, Michael Thomas and a New Orleans (14-3) offense that already carved up the Rams (14-3) once this season.,"Everybody is preparing for this game different," Talib said.,While many of his teammates got their first career playoff victory last week against Dallas, Talib has seen it all before — from big playoff games in New England to a Super Bowl championship run with Denver.,Talib understandably wouldn't give away the Rams' potential strategy for the NFC title game, and neither would Phillips.
Marcus Peters stood at a podium Wednesday and spoke about his respect for Sean Payton and the New Orleans Saints.,As the Saints and the Los Angeles Rams began their preparation for Sunday's showdown, Peters and Payton downplayed the importance of what occurred during and after the teams' first meeting at the Superdome this season.,Afterward, Payton acknowledged the Saints had targeted Peters because they liked the matchup with Thomas — a bold statement to make about a former Pro Bowl cornerback.,I think Marcus was having fun with it, and I know that he has a whole lot of respect for Coach Payton and the Saints.",Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore thinks Peters should be much more concerned about Thomas than Payton — and Peters undoubtedly agrees.
Two years to the day after McVay became the youngest head coach in modern NFL history, he will attempt to earn his first playoff victory Saturday night when the Rams (13-3) host the Dallas Cowboys (11-6) for a trip to the NFC championship game.,LaFleur was on McVay's staff with the Rams last year, while Kingsbury is a good friend and like-minded offensive innovator.,Two of McVay's current assistant coaches — Rams quarterbacks coach Zac Taylor and passing game coordinator Shane Waldron — also landed recent interviews for head coaching jobs.,LaFleur was a longtime quarterbacks coach until McVay hired him as his offensive coordinator in 2017.,Kingsbury is coming off three consecutive losing seasons as the head coach at Texas Tech, but he improbably landed right next to McVay in the NFC West as the Arizona Cardinals' head coach.
Quick earned his 300th victory and Kopitar scored his 300th goal while Los Angeles escaped last place in the overall league standings with a 4-0 win over the Edmonton Oilers.,Kyle Clifford, Tyler Toffoli and Jeff Carter scored during a dominant first period in the Kings' sixth win in nine games since mid-December.,Mikko Koskinen yielded three goals on eight Kings shots before Cam Talbot replaced him in the first period for the Oilers.,Edmonton coach Ken Hitchcock castigated his team after its seventh loss in eight games.,Toffoli scored after Doughty kept an Oilers turnover in the zone and set up the forward for only his second goal in 25 games.
New York center Enes Kanter will not travel to London for the Knicks' upcoming international game because he believes he could be assassinated for his opposition to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.,"Sadly, I'm not going because of that freaking lunatic, the Turkish president," Kanter said.,Kanter's Turkish passport was revoked in 2017, and an international warrant for his arrest was issued by Turkey.,Kanter is a follower of a U.S.-based Turkish cleric accused by Turkey's government of masterminding a failed military coup in 2016.,"People often ask me why I continue to speak out if it's hurting my family," Kanter wrote in a column for Time magazine last year.
Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 22 points, Trey Burke added 16 and the Knicks snapped their eight-game losing streak with a 119-112 victory over Los Angeles on Friday night.,Enes Kanter scored eight of his 16 points down the stretch as the Knicks pulled away, ending their first win since Dec. 14 on an 11-3 run.,Seven players scored in double figures for New York, including 10 points in the fourth quarter from Mario Hezonja, who also had barely played since mid-December.,TIP-INS
Knicks: Frank Ntilikina played only briefly in the first half before straining his left ankle and sitting out the rest of the game.,SLOW START FOR LA
Andrew Whitworth and most of his Los Angeles Rams teammates live within a few miles of their team's training complex in Thousand Oaks.,The Rams believe no one connected to their organization was at the bar, but coach Sean McVay and defensive coordinator Wade Phillips both described a somber mood in the Rams' locker room before practice.,The team will hold a moment of silence before its home game against Seattle on Sunday, and the Rams may organize additional tributes to the victims, McVay said.,After McVay and Whitworth spoke to the team, Saffold said the players discussed putting together a relief fund or other mechanisms of help for the victims.,Although the Rams are playing their games downtown in the Coliseum before their new stadium opens in Inglewood in 2020, the team chose the western Los Angeles suburbs for its semi-permanent weekday home when it returned to Southern California from St. Louis in 2016.
"I'm not as good as someone like Sam Darnold, just to be straight-up," Daniels said this week after practice for the Trojans' (5-4, 4-3 Pac-12) visit from California (5-4, 2-4) on Saturday night.,Daniels arrived at USC several months ago amid fanfare and excitement for the next great quarterback in the Trojans' enviable lineage.,With three games left in the regular season, Daniels is eighth in the Pac-12 with 1,788 yards passing, and he has just nine touchdown passes against seven interceptions.,Quarterbacks coach Bryan Ellis still sees every bit of Daniels' vast potential, even if the offense's performance hasn't reflected it yet.,Daniels was sidelined by a concussion last month at Utah, missing the rest of that defeat and a loss to Arizona State the following week.