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It was the chairmans idea. Franco Harris Steelers Jersey .How could he get the NFL, one of the largest global brands in all of sports, to agree to hold regular-season games in a Premier League stadium? It had never been done.Maybe the NFL thought Tottenham Hotspur chairman Daniel Levy was, as he said, a little bit mad in 2012 when he suggested the two agree to hold NFL games in his clubs new 61,000-seat stadium beginning when it opens in 2018. But the NFL listened.Levy proposed equipping the stadium with a retractable pitch -- a grass soccer field over a synthetic surface for NFL games -- which would make it possible to hold two games in the same stadium on the same day. Over time, Levy also agreed to configure the stadium so the sight lines would be as good for NFL games as they would be for soccer games and to build a dedicated NFL-sized locker room and NFL-sized medical and media facilities.We worked together, Levy said, because it needed to be viewed as a combined joint soccer and NFL stadium. In fact, the way we designed the whole experience is one side of the stadium is a dedicated soccer entrance and the other side is a dedicated NFL entrance.If it ever got to a stage where the NFL decided it wanted to have a permanent team in London, this stadium could literally be, whatever the team was, it would be their stadium as opposed to an NFL team feeling theyre renting Tottenhams stadium.That is a big reason why Mark Waller, the NFLs executive vice president of international, told ESPN.com earlier this year that he could see the league putting a team in London by 2020 if the ownership decided that was something we wanted to do.The NFL has been building a fan base in England since it started its International Series there in 2007. The league has held 14 regular-season games in London -- all at Wembley Stadium -- and will hold three more there this season, including one at Twickenham Stadium, home of Englands national rugby team.Starting in 2018, the NFL will hold at least two games at Tottenhams as-yet-named stadium for a 10-year period, although Levy said, Weve encouraged them to engage with us in a wider way.If the NFL decides it wants to base a team in London, Levy said the Spurs?would like to host it.We would welcome very much close cooperation with the NFL and a dedicated team, Levy said. Obviously a decision is entirely theirs whether they do bring a team to the U.K., and where it would be located is something that would be talked about. But yes, we would be very much welcome to that scenario.When Levy became chairman for the Spurs in 2001, he had three objectives: improve the quality of the team, build a world-class training facility and build a new stadium.When the stadium, which will be adjacent to Tottenhams current White Hart Lane home, is complete, Levy will have achieved all three. Last season, the Spurs finished third in the Premier League, their highest finish of Levys tenure. And a couple of years ago they moved to a new training facility, where they soon will break ground on an addition for player housing.But the stadium and the accompanying neighborhood revitalization project -- both of which are known as the Northumberland Development Project -- are Levys baby. The project includes the construction of new homes, a hotel, a medical facility and a grocery store, among other things.I have lived and breathed this project from day one, the 54-year-old Levy said. It is absolutely my ambition to make this work. When I first started talking about it internally at the club, again I think people around me thought I was mad as well. I guess its my tenacity to get it done because there were many times with the NFL where there wasnt going to be an arrangement. We just kept going back and saying, What about this? What about that?When we first went to them, we went to them with the idea of a joint stadium in some shape or form without going through all the details at that stage. As we sat down and we went through all the operations, we worked out, What does the NFL need? What does soccer need? Basically we had a checklist of all the various things we wanted to achieve, and then at the end of the day it was the best solution.Levy said he researched stadiums in the United States, and while he said he didnt want to give away any trade secrets, the major difference between venues there versus in England is the scale. Theyre enormous, Levy said. So while Tottenhams video boards will be the largest in a European stadium, they wont touch the size of some in the U.S.And although Levy looked at the retractable grass field at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, home of the Cardinals, there were logistical differences there, too. That field retracts outside the indoor stadium, where it can be exposed to sunlight. At the Tottenham site, where land is at a premium, the grass field will retract under the stands and be exposed to artificial light.But unlike Wembley Stadium, the Spurs new venue wont need to be reconfigured to accommodate an NFL field. So the turnaround time from hosting a soccer match on the grass field to an NFL game on the synthetic surface will be two hours.One of the idle thoughts we have at the moment is, would you really be able to play an NFL game and an EPL game on the same day as a doubleheader? Waller said. It wouldnt be absolutely out of the question. I dont think youd want to do it on a regular basis, but on a unique feature, that might be a really interesting idea.Said Levy: I dont think its something wed want to try our first game, but that is certainly realistic. How exciting the idea of having the two biggest leagues in the world from a television perspective -- fantastic! -- play on the same day.While the NFL likes to cite a string of statistics that shows how well it is trending in England -- such as that it has sold out every game at Wembley -- Levy is a bit more conservative in his assessment of whether England can support a full-time NFL franchise.It starts with kids.Kids in school in England dont think about NFL, Levy said. They think about soccer, and to a much, much less extent rugby and cricket. You wouldnt put the NFL in that list at the moment, and therefore one has to be cautious about the timing of the decision and how that is done.I think its possible and I think it can work, otherwise we wouldnt have invested what weve invested in our stadium, and we wouldnt have entered into the arrangement with the NFL. I just think that everyone needs to have their feet on the ground, and just because you sell out three games of 80,000 or 90,000 people [doesnt mean] that a franchise is an automatic success.One NFC front office executive, speaking on the condition of anonymity, says he worries about issues beyond the size of the fan base. He wonders if commissioner Roger Goodell and the league are being overly aggressive with their overseas ambitions during a time when player safety is being emphasized.I would say 2020 is probably the realistic goal in Rogers mind and the owners minds, he said. Theres been so much talk about international. My biggest concern is were trying so hard to go international in so many places too fast that too many bad things can happen. Theyre talking about playing in China. Are you kidding me? Its a bad idea. There are enormous questions about London that havent been answered, but its player safety, player safety, player safety. Regardless of the timeframe, Levy emphasized two things would help put a U.K. franchise in position to succeed. One is the continued engagement of fans, young and old. The other is ensuring that the stadium experience is a real NFL experience, because if its not, not only will the fans attending the game know it, so will the ones watching on television.Tottenham is committed to making the stadium experience special, and if and when the NFL is ready to move a team to London, it will be waiting.Clearly we wouldnt both be putting all this into this stadium if there wasnt the prospect of one day a team eventually coming to London, Levy said. But there are certainly no guarantees that A) a team comes to London, and B) they have to use our stadium.I think were all putting the effort in in the hopes that they will do it. Terry Bradshaw Jersey . -- Eastern Kentucky thrives off creating havoc for others. Carnell Lake Womens Jersey . Defencemen Drew Doughty, Shea Weber and forward Ryan Getzlaf also scored for the Canadians, who started their gold-medal defence 2-0. Goalie Roberto Luongo, getting the call in place of Game 1 starter Carey Price, was solid when needed in making 23 saves for the shutout. http://www.steelerspronfl.com/Youth-Benny-Snell-Jr-Elite-Jersey/ . Just as Montreal was settling into the first full working week of a new year, the Impact announced the appointment of their new head coach. INDEPENDENCE, Ohio -- Just minutes after signing with Cleveland, Andrew Bynum proclaimed the Cavaliers to be a playoff team. Whether his ailing knees allow him to be the starting centre remains to be seen. "Getting my career on track is my only goal for the season," Bynum said Friday at his introductory press conference Friday. "The Cavs have given me every opportunity to succeed, and weve put together a plan. I really believe in the doctors here and the training staff. "I want to play a full season, and there is no doubt in my mind I can do that. Im going to be ready for training camp, thats the plan." Bynum signed a two-year, $24 million contract with the Cavaliers, officially ending his star-crossed stay with the Philadelphia 76ers. The 7-footer missed all of last season with knee problems after being acquired from the Lakers in a four-team trade. Though Bynum underwent bilateral arthroscopic surgery on both knees in March and has not been medically cleared to run, Cleveland general manager Chris Grant made him the teams top priority in free agency. The 25-year-old also was courted by the Mavericks and Hawks. "Were all aware of what his injuries have been," Grant said. "Hes also well aware of that and has taken ownership of the process. Andrew is in a different place right now and hes excited to move forward. Were going to do everything we possibly can." The Cavaliers only guaranteed Bynum $6 million in the first year of the deal, but he could earn an additional $6 million through performance incentives. Cleveland holds a $12 million team option for the second season. Bynum, who hasnt appeared in an NBA game since May 21, 2012, made $16.9 million last year with Philadelphia. He averaged 18.7 points and 11.7 rebounds for the Lakers two seasons ago -- earning his lone All-Star selection -- while playing under Cavaliers coach Mike Brown. "I was an All-Star in this league, but I feel like I still have a lot of room to grow," said Bynum, the No. 10 overall pick in the 2005 draft. "I had a year off, a year to watch basketball and learn the game from the outside in. I saw what I need to do. "With the time off, Ive been able to get the swelling in my knees out, so Im anxious and ready to start. Ive already moved to Cleveland, and come Monday, Ill be working here every day." The New Jersey native appeared to be in good shape, which he credited to "non-weight bearing exercises Ive been doing to strengthen my legs." Bynum added that he weighed 305 pounds, but planned on being at his playing weight of 285 by the start of the regular season. If Bynum is healthy, he gives the Cavaliers a formidable three-man core with All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving and power forward Anderson Vaarejao. Kevin Greene Youth Jersey. . Cleveland signed point guard Jarrett Jack and small forward Earl Clark earlier in this free agency period, giving it three additions with significant playoff experience. The Cavaliers also drafted UNLV power forward Anthony Bennett with the top overall pick, and has another developing big man in third-year pro Tristan Thompson. "Kyries talent is world renowned," Bynum said. "Not having had the opportunity to play with a great point guard, a great one-five (point guard-centre) combination is always a key in this game that we play. "I also cant wait to play with Anderson, honestly, because he brings a kind of energy and passion for the game that I havent been around before. We have the talent, and we definitely have an opportunity to go far." The 76ers had the same intentions last year, but skidded to a 34-48 campaign after dealing All-Star swingman Andre Iguodala and centre Nikola Vucevic as part of the package for Bynum. His work ethic was called into question when he was unable to play in November, and his reputation suffered more damage after opting for season-ending surgery five months later. "I was completely surprised with the way things turned out in Philly," said Bynum, who has a .566 career field goal percentage. "I showed up and I was in playing shape, and I had every intention of playing. Its just unfortunate it didnt work out. The criticism, I thought, was unfair, but it comes with the territory." Cleveland went 24-58 last season, making it 64-166 in three years since Akron native LeBron James left the franchise to sign with the Miami Heat as a free agent. James is eligible to opt out of his contract next summer, when the Cavaliers will be at least $20 million under the salary cap and hope to add the final piece to their puzzle. Bynum understands that he cant change what occurred in Philadelphia, but he can affect the future in Cleveland. "I want to get this team back into the playoffs and make some noise," he said. "The Cleveland fans deserve that. I will bring leadership and experience to the great young nucleus of guys we have here. We have the talent. Now, all its going to take is hard work, and Im willing to do that." ---- NOTES: The Cavaliers waived PF Kevin Jones and PG Chris Quinn in order to clear the salary cap room to sign Bynum. Both players were on Clevelands summer league roster, but had non-guaranteed contracts. ... The Cavaliers have renounced the rights to PF Luke Walton, but Grant said the door remains open for him to return. ... Russian rookie SF Sergey Karasev will make his first visit to Cleveland next week. The No. 19 pick in the draft has been playing professionally overseas, but will join the Cavaliers this season. Wholeslae Jerseys NFL Jerseys Cheap Wholesale NBA Jerseys Cheap NHL Jerseys Cheap MLB Jerseys Wholesale Soccer Jerseys Cheap College Jerseys Cheap Football Jerseys Cheap Basketball Jerseys Cheap Baseball Jerseys ' ' ' 
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