CHARLOTTE, N. Nick Schmaltz Jersey .C. - The Panthers say theyd like to find a replacement for longtime No. 1 wide receiver Steve Smith in this years NFL draft. The big question is when theyll do it. The Panthers have the 28th overall pick, but the NFC South champions have a variety of needs after getting hit hard in free agency, and could go in a number of directions with their first-round choice. General manager Dave Gettleman said recently that wide receiver, offensive tackle and cornerback are among the teams top needs, but qualified that statement by adding he wont got out of his way to land one. "When you reach for a position of need youre in trouble," he said. Gettleman said he has some reservations about drafting a receiver in the first round because it often takes them longer to adjust to the NFL game than those who play other positions. "History tells you that its a very difficult position to assimilate into (the NFL), especially with the current game being played at the college level," Gettleman said. Gettleman called it a "wide receiver heavy" draft that includes several players whove put up big numbers. He said the trick is finding guys who can easily make the transition to the next level. "Ill look at a guy and hes caught 90 balls ... but of those 45 were flash screens," Gettleman said. "The other 45 he caught, he ran to three spots. So, do they understand coverage? Theyre going to have to learn the whole route tree. How long is it going to take them to assimilate? Its an issue. Its a problem." Smith was released in a salary cap move earlier this off-season. Replacing his toughness and production wont be easy. He caught 836 passes for 12,197 yards and 67 touchdowns for the Panthers in 13 seasons. However, after averaging 76 receptions for 1,284 yards receiving and 5.5 touchdowns in his first two seasons playing with quarterback Cam Newton, Smiths numbers fell off in 2013. He caught 64 passes for 745 yards and four TDs. The Panthers signed free agents Jerricho Cotchery, Jason Avant and Tiquan Underwood, but none is expected to become the next No. 1 receiver in Carolina. Five things to watch from the Panthers in the draft: ON THE FRONT BURNER: Jordan Gross retired this off-season, leaving a huge hole at left tackle — one the Panthers potentially could address in Round 1. Gettleman said there are some tackles in the draft dont have "left tackle feet," but said that doesnt necessarily matter. "There are only so many elite tackles," he said. "There are plenty of guys playing left tackle in this league that dont have classic left tackle feet." Finding a left tackle might take on added importance given Newton is coming off ankle surgery this off-season. FIRST ROUND SUCCESS: The Panthers have had tremendous success with their first-round picks the last three seasons. They grabbed defensive tackle Star Lotulelei from Utah at No. 14 in 2013, and he looks like hes going to be around the league for quite a while. They drafted linebacker Luke Kuechly at No. 11 in 2012 and quarterback Cam Newton first overall the year before that. Kuechly was the 2013 NFL Defensive Player of the Year, while Newton was the Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2011. BLUE GOOSE: Last year, Gettleman said the Panthers needed to add some "hog mollies," or big linemen. This year, the Boston native switched gears, saying if there is a "blue goose" pass rusher available at No. 28 he wouldnt pass on him. Tough to know what a blue-winged bird native to Ethiopia has to do with building a football team, though. CORNERBACK ON RADAR: The Panthers lost starting cornerback Captain Munnerlyn to Minnesota in free agency. While they signed free agent Antoine Cason, dont rule out cornerback as an option with one of the teams top three picks. The Panthers have one pick in each of the seven rounds. DONT BE REACHING: The Panthers are determined not to reach for picks at positions of need. They followed that plan last year and took defensive tackle Kawaan Short from Purdue in the second round — even after selecting Lotulelei in the first. "Last year, K.K. (Short) was obviously the best value in that second-round pick," Gettleman said. ___ AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL Brett Hull Jersey . Dwyane Wade followed a few days later. Custom Arizona Coyotes Jerseys . The judge sternly instructed the prosecutor to restrain himself and he apologized -- then went right back to trying to pick holes in the testimony of the double-amputee runner. It was a harsh day of cross-examination for Pistorius, challenged relentlessly about his account of the moments just before he killed Reeva Steenkamp, as well as circumstances related to several firearms charges against him, including the firing of a gun in a crowded restaurant.BALTIMORE -- Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Marcus Stroman is appealing his six-game suspension that Major League Baseball imposed for throwing at the head of a Baltimore hitter. MLB penalized Stroman on Wednesday and also fined the 23-year-old rookie an undisclosed amount. The suspension had been set to start on Wednesday night when the Blue Jays played at Baltimore. Because Stroman is appealing, no penalty will take effect until there is a resolution. "Its tough," Stroman said before Wednesdays game. "Its in the appeal process now. I would never intentionally throw at anyone. I respect the game.. Dan Focht Jersey. . I respect the players too much to ever do anything like that. Family, friends, teammates know the type of individual I am." Asked if was surprised about the punishment, he replied, "Im not surprised, just being the game that it was. Well see how it plays out." On Monday night, Stroman threw a pitch that sailed past the head of Orioles catcher Caleb Joseph. Stroman stayed in the game, struck out Joseph to end the inning and engaged the Baltimore dugout as he left the mound. Stromans pitch came a half-inning after Joseph blocked the plate as Jose Reyes slid home. ' ' '
BOSTON -- The Boston Red Sox are still looking for a position for Brock Holt. Air Force 1 Low Noir . The versatile rookie has made the search difficult by playing well wherever the club has put him. Holt made his first professional start in centre field and he appeared perfectly comfortable in his fifth position this season. He made a sensational diving catch to end the third inning and scored both Boston runs in the Red Soxs 2-1 win over the Minnesota Twins 2-1 on Tuesday night. "It seems like Brock at some point in each game has an effect on whats going on," said Jon Lester, who weathered a shaky start and pitched six-plus strong innings. "Im sure well see him with catchers gear or on the mound at some point this year. The guys done an unbelievable job." Holt ended the third inning with a diving catch on a ball that left fielder Jonny Gomes lost in the twilight. Gomes signalled with his hands that he couldnt see it, but Holt was already on the move and lunged just in time to complete the catch. "Fortunately I was able to get over there and make a play," Holt said. Boston fans gave him a long ovation during his entire trot to the dugout, and teammates waited with high-fives and pats on the back on the way. Holt happened to be up next and led off with a double off the Green Monster, stole third and scored on a sacrifice fly to put the Red Sox up 2-0. "He comes out of nowhere and makes a diving catch. In a way, he took over the inning," Boston manager John Farrell said. "He doesnt get hung up on moving to a position for the first time. He goes out and plays." Holt scored Bostons first run after he singled and then came in on an RBI double by Dustin Pedroia. Lester (8-7) needed 33 pitches to get out of the first inning on a hot, muggy night, then settled down and took a shutout into the sixth. He left with one out in the seventh after striking out six and holding the Twins to one run, four hits and a walk. Edward Mujica pitched the ninth and earned his second save. Phil Hughes (7-3) took the loss for the Twins, who have dropped four straight. The Red Sox have held Minnesota to one run and seven hits in the first two games of the series. Hughes gave up two runs and eight hits in eight innings and struck out six. "He did all he could do. He gave us a great opportunity to win. We just couldnt come up with enough big hits," manager Ron Gardenhire said. After Danny Santana opened the game with a single,, Lester retired 13 of the next 14 batters and didnt allow another hit until Kurt Suzuki singled with one out in the fifth. Minnesota cut it to 2-1 in the sixth when Santana led off with a double, moved to third on a bunt by Brian Dozier, and scored on Joe Mauers double. "We need to knock in some runs," Gardenhire said. "We need more of them." Pedroia nearly broke open the game on a fly ball to left that was inches short of a two-run homer. Instead, it was a single, and Pedroia was caught in a rundown. The play was reviewed for several minutes, and the call on the field stood. NOTES: Holt played centre field on Tuesday and has made starts in all three outfield positions, as well as first and third base. ... Lester struck out Eduardo Escobar in the fifth inning for his 1,342nd career strikeout, passing Cy Young for fourth place on Bostons career strikeout list. ... Lester threw nearly one-third of his 109 pitches in the first inning. ... Before the game, the Red Sox designated outfielder Grady Sizemore for assignment. Sizemore returned from injuries that sidelined him between September 2011 and this season. He hit .333 in spring training, but struggled lately. In 52 games, he hit .216 with two homers and 15 RBIs. ... Minnesota RF Oswaldo Arcia went 0-for-4 and is hitless in 20 at-bats. ... Minnesota RHP Kyle Gibson (6-5, 3.55) will face Boston RHP John Lackey (8-4, 3.24) in the finale of the three-game series on Wednesday afternoon. Nike Air Force 1 High Pas Cher .Y. -- When the New York Islanders lead was cut in half in the opening minute of the third period, the sense of impending doom began wafting through Nassau Coliseum. Air Force 1 Mid Pas Cher . With the Nets winning streak in jeopardy, Williams scored 23 points, 11 in the final six minutes, to lead Brooklyn to a 104-99 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats on Wednesday night.Ottawa, ON (SportsNetwork.com) - John Klingberg snapped a tie in the latter stages of the third period before Trevor Daley and Jamie Benn added empty-net markers, and Dallas topped Ottawa by a 6-3 score on Thursday. Benn added a first-period goal, with Colton Sceviour and Ales Hemsky also lighting the lamp for the Stars, who put a two-game losing streak to rest. Kari Lehtonen provided a 25-save effort to back his offense. Mika Zibanejad, Bobby Ryan and Alex Chiasson scored once each for the Senators, who have lost seven of their last 10. Robin Lehner allowed four goals on 39 shots in the setback. Klingberg put the Stars back on top by a 4-3 count with 9:09 remaining. He poked the puck away from Ottawas Mike Hoffman inside his defensive zone, skated up the right wing before cutting in and beating Lehner to the short side. Lehner was summoned to the bench with over a minute to play, and though Tyler Seguin was caught hooking inside a minute left, Daley picked up the puck off a defensive-zone faceoff and sent the puck into the vacant cage only six seconds later. Air Force 1 Low Pas Cher . . Not to be outdone, Benn flipped the puck from behind his own goal line into the empty net at 19:33 to account for the three-goal margin. Only 26 seconds after Methot sat for holding, Benn put the Stars on the board. Goals 3:22 apart from Sceviour at even strength and Hemsky on the power play boosted Dallas to a 3-0 edge. Before the end of the period, Zibanejad (16:02) and Ryan (18:30 on a power play) cut the hosts deficit to one. Following a scoreless middle frame, Chiassons tip-in of a Kyle Turris chance pulled the Senators even at 2:45 of the third. Game Notes Stars center Jason Spezza returned to Ottawa for the first time since requesting a trade from the Senators last summer, picking up four shots on goal in 16:17 of ice time. Though he was booed the first time he touched the puck, the Canadian Tire Centre crowd cheered a tribute shown on the video board shortly after ... Daley added two assists to record a season high in points and his third multi-point effort of the year. ' ' '