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Baltimore Ravens fans exchanged their jerseys of former running back Ray Rice of the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on September 19, 2014 in Baltimore, Maryland. Following a video that surfaced of Ray Rice knocking his then fiancee Janay Rice unconscious in an New Jersey Casino elevator, the Baltimore Ravens cut Rice and the NFL suspended him indefinitely. The Baltimore Ravens offered fans an option for a free exchange of their Ray Rice uniforms for another Ravens player. (Photos: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

The Toronto Maple Leafs’ Phil Kessel poses during a photo shoot at training camp in Toronto on Thursday September 18, 2013. (Photo: Chris Young/The Canadian Press)As the Leafs open training camp, here are some key questions they’ll need to answer.

The Toronto Maple Leafs’ Phil Kessel poses during a photo shoot at training camp in Toronto on Thursday September 18, 2013. (Photo: Chris Young/The Canadian Press)

As the Leafs open training camp, here are some key questions they’ll need to answer.

It was only a question of when, and against whom, and with six home games this week, it was a safe bet the Baltimore Orioles would tie up their championship in a bow for the legions of orange-clad partisans who cheer them on at Camden Yards.A remarkably balanced and resourceful team, the Orioles won their 90th game against the Blue Jays on Monday night. On Tuesday, more than 35,000 expectant fans came out to experience a celebration. They started the party in the first inning and the merriment mounted apace. By the fifth, the fans were on their feet and cheering at the end of each inning, counting the outs required for the Orioles’ first American League East title since 1997.The final score was 8-2, and the suspense was minimal. Baltimore led 4-2 after two and held that edge into the seventh, but it never felt that close. The Blue Jays obliged a hometown script. (Photo: Patrick Semansky/The Associated Press)

It was only a question of when, and against whom, and with six home games this week, it was a safe bet the Baltimore Orioles would tie up their championship in a bow for the legions of orange-clad partisans who cheer them on at Camden Yards.

A remarkably balanced and resourceful team, the Orioles won their 90th game against the Blue Jays on Monday night. On Tuesday, more than 35,000 expectant fans came out to experience a celebration. They started the party in the first inning and the merriment mounted apace. By the fifth, the fans were on their feet and cheering at the end of each inning, counting the outs required for the Orioles’ first American League East title since 1997.

The final score was 8-2, and the suspense was minimal. Baltimore led 4-2 after two and held that edge into the seventh, but it never felt that close. The Blue Jays obliged a hometown script. (Photo: Patrick Semansky/The Associated Press)

Arkansas State player plays dead on fake punt, gets run over when it all goes wrongArkansas State executed one of the strangest, most inexplicable plays in recent college football history against Miami on Saturday.In the second quarter, Arkansas State ran a fake punt. Instead of running your traditional fake, they had a player act like he died, presumably to divert the defence’s attention from the play on the other side of the field (we guess?).It did not work. At all. The fake punt pass got intercepted by Miami. The Vine is a work of art. (Photo: ESPNM/Business Insider)

Arkansas State player plays dead on fake punt, gets run over when it all goes wrong
Arkansas State executed one of the strangest, most inexplicable plays in recent college football history against Miami on Saturday.

In the second quarter, Arkansas State ran a fake punt. Instead of running your traditional fake, they had a player act like he died, presumably to divert the defence’s attention from the play on the other side of the field (we guess?).

It did not work. At all. The fake punt pass got intercepted by Miami. The Vine is a work of art. (Photo: ESPNM/Business Insider)

A Cincinnati Bengals fan watches the action during the game against the Atlanta Falcons at Paul Brown Stadium on September 14, 2014 in Cincinnati, Ohio.  (Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

A Cincinnati Bengals fan watches the action during the game against the Atlanta Falcons at Paul Brown Stadium on September 14, 2014 in Cincinnati, Ohio.  (Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Expect the unexpected.

That was the advice William Nylander received from his father as the Toronto Maple Leafs prospect heads into his first rookie camp this weekend in London, Ont. When Michael Nylander went to his first NHL training camp in 1992-93, the Hartford Whalers knew the Swedish forward was skilled. But they made a point of finding out if he was strong enough — both physically and mentally — to handle the adversity that comes with playing in North America.

“They set a guy on him to try and get him irritated and try to see if he will retaliate,” William Nylander said. “That’s a pretty funny story.”

So, did his father retaliate?

“I don’t remember what he said,” said Nylander. “I’ll try to get back to you on that.”

Nylander might not have to fight at the four-team tournament, which includes the Ottawa Senators, Chicago Blackhawks and Pittsburgh Penguins. But he will have to pass his own set of tests if he is going to make the jump to the NHL level this season.

(Photos by Tyler Anderson/National Post; Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)

The baseball regular season takes forever and is relentless, and those can be beautiful things. A slump is not defining, and neither is a streak. It did not matter that Edwin Encarnacion hit two home runs in April because he hit 16 in May. Baseball rewards consistency. It always feels like there is time for things to even out.

That things will even out is a faulty assumption, though. A 162-game season is a pretty good sample size, but it is not perfect. Take Adam Lind for example: His batting average and on-base percentage are both up from last year. He is having just about as much luck when he hits the ball into play this year as he had last year. The line drives and the doubles are coming at virtually the same rates as 2013.

Yet, over the previous five seasons — and this includes his disastrous 2012 campaign — he averaged 23.6 home runs per season. He would hit a home run every 21.2 plate appearances. This year, after his decisive shot in the seventh inning of the Blue Jays 6-3 win over Tampa Bay, he has gone deep five times in 285 appearances — or once per 57 at-bats. Unless he goes on a huge power binge over the last two weeks of the season, things will not even out.

“It’s nice to join the party,” Lind said.

The blast was vintage Lind — an effortless swing that propelled the wall just to the left of centre-field. For once, it sailed over the wall instead of denting it, breaking a 3-3 tie.

(Photos by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images; Chris Young/The Canadian Press)

The Miami Marlins lost much more than a game Thursday night. They likely have lost slugger Giancarlo Stanton for the rest of the season after a frightening scene at Miller Park.

Stanton sustained multiple facial fractures, dental damage and cuts that needed stitches after being hit in the face by a fastball from Milwaukee’s Mike Fiers.

Stanton’s father was at the game and came onto the field while his son was treated. Stanton was bleeding heavily from his mouth, then was driven away from the plate in an ambulance. His dad rode with him to the hospital.

It was ruled that Stanton swung trying to get out of the way of the 88 mph pitch from Fiers. Reed Johnson batted for Stanton and was hit in the hand by Fiers’ next pitch, triggering a bench-clearing brawl.

“I’ve never seen anything like that and I’ve definitely never seen two swings called on those two plays,” Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. “I’ve never seen a guy get hit in the mouth and called for a swing. He’s out there bleeding at home plate and for the first base ump to say he swung at that pitch, what a joke.” (Photos: Morry Gash/The Associated Press, Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)

From the graphics archives: How Oscar Pistorius says he killed Reeva SteenkampOscar Pistorius was found not guilty of murder on Thursday in the fatal shooting of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, on Valentine’s Day of 2013. He could still be convicted of culpable homicide in a formal judgment expected on Friday.The double-amputee sprinter admitted he shot Steenkamp but said it was an accident. In an affidavit shortly after the shooting, Pistorius described what happened that night. As we await the formal judgment, here’s another look at a graphic from February 2013 laying out Pistorius’s account of Steenkamp’s death.

From the graphics archives: How Oscar Pistorius says he killed Reeva Steenkamp
Oscar Pistorius was found not guilty of murder on Thursday in the fatal shooting of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, on Valentine’s Day of 2013. He could still be convicted of culpable homicide in a formal judgment expected on Friday.

The double-amputee sprinter admitted he shot Steenkamp but said it was an accident. In an affidavit shortly after the shooting, Pistorius described what happened that night. As we await the formal judgment, here’s another look at a graphic from February 2013 laying out Pistorius’s account of Steenkamp’s death.

Former Montreal Canadiens captain Saku Koivu has announced his retirement.Koivu, 39, played for Montreal from 1995 through 2009 and was captain from 1999 on.During his time with the Habs, the Finnish forward was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma and missed almost all of the 2001-02 season before making an emotional return.“Looking back at my 22 years of pro hockey first in Finland and then in the NHL I feel truly blessed and fulfilled,” he said in a statement released by the NHL Players’ Association. (Photo: Postmedia News)

Former Montreal Canadiens captain Saku Koivu has announced his retirement.

Koivu, 39, played for Montreal from 1995 through 2009 and was captain from 1999 on.

During his time with the Habs, the Finnish forward was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma and missed almost all of the 2001-02 season before making an emotional return.

“Looking back at my 22 years of pro hockey first in Finland and then in the NHL I feel truly blessed and fulfilled,” he said in a statement released by the NHL Players’ Association. (Photo: Postmedia News)