Le Toux and Giroux Enjoy Mitchell & Ness Party DJ'd by Questlove

Le Toux and Giroux Enjoy Mitchell & Ness Party DJ'd by Questlove

Unfortunately, the Phillies' season is over, and instead of gearing up for Game 4 of the NLCS on Thursday night, Philly fans were now left searching for alternative forms of entertainment. Aside from the fact that none of us would voluntarily have the Phillies getting their golf games in order right now, there's something to be said for enjoying a night away from the stadium or the TV. Particularly if that night is spent in one of Philly's finest retail establishments, listening to one of the city's most celebrated musicians play some music.

That was the scene last night at the Mitchell & Ness party at their 12th and Chestnut flagship store where Questlove was DJing for a packed house.

And, apparently, an off-night with no responsibilities is a very welcomed occurrence for athletes too. A night after the Flyers won their home opener on Wednesday, a decent contingent of the orange and black came out for the party. Claude Giroux, James van Riemsdyk, Wayne Simmonds, Max Talbot, and Scott Hartnell were all spotted enjoying Questlove's tunes on their night off. As Matt P. pointed out, the most acceptable Player Wearing Another Team's Gear sighting was JVR rocking an old school Hartford Whalers hat.

The Philadelphia Union were also well represented, with Sebastien Le Toux, Michael and Gabriel Farfan, Justin Mapp, and Danny Califf among the event's attendees.

There was a good mix of media and other Philly personalities, and the athletes were seemingly able to just hang out and not be bothered by too many requests for photos and the like. We certainly didn't want to bug them, although Matt ran into Califf for a moment while the two were waiting in line. Matt's impression was that Califf was incredibly nice, a sharp change from how he appears when contesting crosses into the box. Mild-mannered and enthusiastic about the opportunity to play soccer in Philly, Califf agreed that fans are pumped for the team's successes so far this year, but by no means content just yet. He seemed genuinely excited and appreciative to be playing in front of a demanding fanbase.

Overall though, despite sports being a general unifying theme of the popular Philly brand's party, it wasn't the focus of the night by any means. Sean McKinney, President of Mitchell & Ness, told us that might not have been the case had the Phillies been playing. The M&N team had plans for flat screens to be everywhere if the Phils were in the NLCS, which certainly would have been a great party as well.

But, with no Phillies to celebrate, this was still a fun night with some interesting people and great music.

Questlove photo by The700Level.com, Danny Califf photo by Mitchell & Ness

National champion Villanova to be honored at White House next week

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USA Today Images

National champion Villanova to be honored at White House next week

It's been nearly two months since Villanova won the National Championship in one of the most memorable games in NCAA Tournament history.

Since then, the Wildcats have been honored by the city (parade), the New York Stock Exchange (opening bell), the Phillies (first pitch), the Flyers and the Union. Earlier this week, head coach Jay Wright addressed the Eagles.

But that will all pale in comparison to where the Wildcats will be next Tuesday, when they become the latest championship team to visit the White House and meet President Barack Obama.

The ceremony is scheduled to begin at 4:10 p.m. and will be streamed on www.whitehouse.gov/live.

In his pool, President Obama had Villanova finally advancing past the second round — "I know that eventually they're going to break through. They've had some bad luck over the last couple of years," Obama told ESPN.com — but had the Wildcats falling to Kansas in the regional semifinal.

He then had Kansas beating North Carolina to win the title.

After surviving the first weekend for the first time since their Final Four run in 2009, Villanova ousted Kansas, 64-59, before shocking Buddy Hield and Oklahoma in the national semifinal, winning by 44. The Wildcats then won one of the most memorable championship games in NCAA Tournament history when Kris Jenkins hit a three-pointer at the buzzer to beat the Tar Heels, 77-74.

Union transfer contract of Michael Lahoud to Miami FC

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Union transfer contract of Michael Lahoud to Miami FC

The Union have cashed in on Michael Lahoud.

After terminating his loan to the New York Cosmos on Tuesday, the Union recalled Lahoud and officially sold the 29-year-old midfielder to Miami FC of the NASL for an undisclosed amount.

“Mike always served the club in a professional manner during his time here,” said Union sporting director Earnie Stewart, who loaned Lahoud to the Cosmos this offseason. “We thank him for his service and want to wish him the best of luck in Miami and in his future endeavors.”

Lahoud, whose prorated $115,637.50 guaranteed salary comes off the Union’s salary cap, was acquired in 2012 in a trade with Chivas USA for defender Danny Califf. He made 58 appearances with the Union before being loaned out.

Eagles' left guard job is Allen Barbre's, but backups are pushing

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Eagles' left guard job is Allen Barbre's, but backups are pushing

Allen Barbre is the Eagles’ starting left guard.

For now.

The 31-year-old offensive lineman started all 16 games at left guard in 2015, and as of Tuesday at OTAs, he was still a starter for Doug Pederson’s new-look offense.

But that could change.

There are several players pushing for the left guard spot. Among them are Stefen Wisniewski, Malcolm Bunche, Isaac Seumalo and Andrew Gardner.

“I definitely am trying to start somewhere,” said Wisniewski, a free-agent signing. “I think I would be a good starting left guard.”

Wisniewski, 27, signed a one-year prove-it deal in early April to join the Eagles (see story). After being taken in the second round of the 2011 draft, Wisniewski has started 77 of 80 possible games in the NFL. He clearly views himself as a starter in the NFL.

For the last two weeks, he’s been working with the second team at guard and center.

“Yeah, it’s weird. It’s definitely weird,” Wisniewski said. “I haven’t spent much time with the twos in five years. Probably a week or two. So it’s definitely different, but I’m just looking at it as a temporary thing, though.”

This offseason, the Eagles added veteran Brandon Brooks to play right guard, taking over for Matt Tobin, but Barbre is still slotted on the left side. In fact, to hammer the point home, the starting offensive linemen have their lockers in a row in the deep corner of the locker room, from left to right: Jason Peters, Barbre, Jason Kelce, Brooks, Lane Johnson.

So, as of late May, Barbre is still the starter.

“I really like where we're at. I like the depth at that position right now,” Pederson said last week. “But yeah, Allen Barbre is my guy and he's our starter.”

Wisniewski is the most accomplished of the backups pushing for that starting left guard spot, but he’s not alone.

Bunche, who was on the Eagles’ practice squad in 2015 after going undrafted out of UCLA, has been working with the second team at left guard during practice. And the second-year player thinks he has a shot at the starting job too.

“Oh yes. But not just that one,” Bunche said. “Throughout the season, anything can happen. That’s one thing that [offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland], he talks about it a lot, you never know when you’re number is going to be called. You just gotta stay in tune with what’s being called, the play-calling, the different techniques going into certain games. I feel I have an opportunity to take that spot if I wanted to. My mindset it to come in and get better each and every day.”

Another possible starting left guard isn’t with the team right now. Third-round pick Seumalo, from Oregon State, is back at school because of the NFL graduation rule and Oregon State’s quarters system. He would be a logical choice to compete for that starting job, but he’s missing valuable time at OTAs.

Meanwhile, Barbre, who had started just eight total games in his seven-year career before 2015, is trying to stave off his competitors. The veteran knows the team brought in a bunch of new offensive linemen this offseason (they have 17 on the roster). He just doesn’t care.

“Honestly, I wasn’t really worried about that,” Barbre said Tuesday. “Honestly, I thought I played fairly decent (in 2015), if you studied the film and you understood what went on. There was a lot of stuff that was tough on the O-line, so it made it kind of tough on us.”

The criticism of the offensive line last season was loud, especially criticism of the guard positions, but Barbre did his best to avoid it.  

“I don’t even read it,” he said. “Honestly, I don’t even care. You guys got your jobs and I have my job. We all have different things we have to do.”

Right now, Barbre’s job is to hold onto that starting spot, while Wisniewski and the rest try to steal it away.