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  • 24 Jul
    导出博客文章EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- After spending the night at the office, Minnesota Vikings
    coach Mike Zimmer had a surprise early-morning visitor.Offensive coordinator
    Norv Turner, following the offseason hire of a potential replacement and feeble
    performances by the Vikings in losing the last two games, came to tell the boss
    he was quitting for the best interest of both Turner and the team.After taking
    the leagues only remaining undefeated record into their bye week, the Vikings
    have stumbled badly. Turners abrupt resignation Wednesday was the latest
    stunner, with players returning from a day off to learn of the change in
    leadership on offense. Pat Shurmur, who has five years of experience as an NFL
    offensive coordinator plus two as a head coach, was picked to replace Turner.I
    obviously didnt see this coming. I was in here yesterday talking to him. I didnt
    really think anything was different, said quarterback Sam Bradford, who found
    out via phone from his wife as he pulled into the parking lot at team
    headquarters.Zimmers voice cracked and his bottom lip quivered near the end of
    his news conference while discussing his relationship with Turner. He hired
    Turner to run the offense after getting the job with the Vikings in 2014.Zimmer
    said the decision was made entirely by the 64-year-old Turner, but after two
    seasons of lagging production by the offense Zimmer hired Shurmur as an
    overqualified tight ends coach for 2016.Norv is a very, very good friend of
    mine. He has helped me tremendously in the three years that Ive been here,
    Zimmer said. Hes had an unbelievable career. Hes been, really, my right-hand
    man.Turner released a statement through the Vikings, stating his tremendous
    respect for Zimmer, the staff and the players, and his desire to see them
    succeed without him. He said in subsequent interviews that the decision stemmed
    from differing views with Zimmer about the direction of the offense.It just got
    to the point where I didnt think it was going to work with me, so I removed
    myself, Turner told the Minneapolis Star Tribune.The Vikings have scored only 10
    points in each loss after the 5-0 start, with the offensive lines performance
    the primary concern. Bradford, sacked 11 times over the last two games, said he
    had no problem with the scheme and that the players felt responsible for Turners
    departure.The first thing you think about is what you couldve done differently,
    what we could have done as an offense to prevent this from happening, tight end
    Kyle Rudolph said. Weve just got to get everybody to do their job. We have the
    talent and ability to make that happen. There just has to be a little bit more
    sense of urgency on our side of the ball to go out and execute.The Vikings (5-2)
    host the Lions on Sunday, still in first place in the NFC North and second in
    the conference despite their recent struggles. Theyre averaging 2.7 yards per
    rushing attempt, by far the lowest in the league, and are fourth worst in sacks
    allowed. The original starters at quarterback (Teddy Bridgewater), running back
    (Adrian Peterson) and tackle (Matt Kalil and Andre Smith) are all on injured
    reserve.So while Turners departure could further the post-bye spiral, Shurmurs
    takeover could also provide a system restart needed for a sputtering group.Its
    really hard to say. I know that the players really respect Norv. I know the
    coaches do. I know I certainly do. So well just have to see how that goes,
    Zimmer said. I do think that its hard to do a lot of things different during the
    season.Turner, who was calling all of the plays, has been with nine NFL teams
    over 32 years, almost half of that as a head coach. This was his 10th season as
    an offensive coordinator in the league. Turners son, Scott, remains Minnesotas
    quarterbacks coach, and the rest of the staff remains intact.Zimmer became more
    involved in the offensive planning last year and hired Tony Sparano as offensive
    line coach along with Shurmur, putting three former NFL head coaches on the
    offensive staff.Since Norv has been here Ive given him almost 100 percent total
    free will in everything that theyve done offensively, Zimmer said. Obviously Ill
    come in and make suggestions, but there really has not been a time where Ive
    demanded everything from there.Last season, Shurmur had Bradford as his
    quarterback with the Eagles. His input helped Vikings general manager Rick
    Spielman make the emergency trade for Bradford on Sept. 3 after Bridgewater was
    hurt. Shurmur was also Bradfords offensive coordinator in 2010, the quarterbacks
    rookie year with St. Louis.Ive always enjoyed working with Pat, Bradford said. I
    think hes a great football mind.---For more NFL coverage: and
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    . Sgt. Eric ONeal says most of the arrests at Monday
    nights game were for public drunkenness, though one person was taken into
    custody on suspicion of trying to steal a seat from the stadium.
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    . Denis Coderre, the former federal MP who was
    elected mayor on Nov. 3, has drawn the ire of some Montreal Canadiens. During
    last nights game he tweeted: "Hello? Can we get a one-way ticket to
    (minor-league) Hamilton for David Desharnais please.
    . Klitschkos management company says the bout will be the Ukrainian fighters
    25th world championship fight. The 1.83-meter (6-foot) Leapai defeated the
    previously unbeaten Denis Boytsov in November to become the WBOs mandatory
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    . Jim Rutherford, President and General Manager of
    the Carolina Hurricanes, announced Wednesday that the team would assign Swedish
    forward Elias Lindholm to his nations team for the upcoming tournament.
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    . The 26-year-old Ireland striker, who has four goals this
    season, has signed a three-and-a-half year contract with his new club. Newly
    re-signed Penrith veteran Peter Wallace has backed the clubs rookie halves
    pairing to lead the side to an unlikely NRL finals berth.Pencilled in as the
    clubs halfback in the pre-season, Wallace is the clubs first-choice hooker for
    the next two seasons after extending his contract on Monday until the end of the
    2018 season.I remember I met with (coach Anthony Griffin) at the start of the
    year and he said, I want to start with you in the halves, Wallace told AAP.He
    said, I dont know whats going to happen during the year, but that was the way
    were going to start and well just see how it goes.It took just one round for
    Griffins plans to turn upside down, with Wallace deputising for an injured James
    Segeyaro and doing such a strong job that Segeyaro was made dispensable by
    mid-season.Another experienced campaigner in Jamie Soward was also let go last
    month, paving the way for rookie halfback Nathan Cleary to establish himself as
    the clubs No.1 playmaker.Wallace is confident the 18-year-old Cleary, together
    with fellow youngster Te Maire Martin, could thrrust the eighth-placed Panthers
    into the finals.ddddddddddddMartin makes his long-awaited return from a shoulder
    injury via reserve grade this week and is expected to return to top grade the
    following round.Naths a bit of a different mould than a normal rookie half. I
    wouldnt call him old, but his temperament is just right for first grade, Wallace
    said.And Te Maires obviously played a handful of games and handled all the
    pressure that came with playing his first season earlier this year. Im really
    confident in both of them.Wallace praised Griffin, who had told Wallace he was
    free to depart Brisbane in 2013, for keeping the Panthers in contention for a
    top-eight spot despite the constant changes in the playing roster.Our whole
    spines changed, people playing different positions and different personnel. I
    think the teams done a great job, and Hooks done a great job to get everyone
    ready to be in the position were in now, he said. ' ' '