How Many Grounds Crew Does It Take to Rake a Sand Trap? Photo Gallery from a Wet Monday at Merion

How Many Grounds Crew Does It Take to Rake a Sand Trap? Photo Gallery from a Wet Monday at Merion

One thing is pretty clear about the 2013 U.S. Open taking place just outside of Philadelphia over in Ardmore, PA, the USGA will take every measure necessary to ensure the tournament goes off with as few issues as possible this weekend. Case in point: check out how many grounds crew are working on this one sand trap during today's practice round.

They say the only thing they can't control is the weather though and it's certainly causing quite a bit of a mess on much of the course over at Merion. The Daily News confirmed a previous report from Golf Digest that the USGA is going so far as to have an emergency plan in place to switch as many as three holes from the East to the West Course if "Noah and the Ark" type conditions make a couple of the holes along Cobbs Creek unplayable this weekend.

Play was suspended twice on Monday, and USGA executive director Mike Davis and Merion director of course management Matt Shaffer are scheduled to provide an update on Merion's condition at 5 p.m.

Menta caught up with Shaffer earlier in the day to discuss the aforementioned "doomsday" plan and got a few quotes from previous U.S. Open champions Ernie Els and Adam Scott, with Els saying not even helicopters will be able to get Merion dry.

[For more of The700Level's 2013 U.S. Open coverage, click here]

Should be a very interesting week to follow the radar.

Here are some more photos from Monday's soaked practice round, including Tiger showing his Jedi powers:

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Ben Simmons, Robert Covington react to Ersan Ilyasova trade

Ben Simmons, Robert Covington react to Ersan Ilyasova trade

On Wednesday, the Sixers traded Ersan Ilyasova to the Hawks in exchange for Tiago Splitter and a 2017 second-round pick, as well as the option to swap 2017 second-round selections (see story).

"I want to thank Ersan Ilyasova for his positive contributions to this organization both on and off the basketball court," president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo said in a statement. "Ersan is a true professional whose daily examples of hard work, focus and consistency have helped facilitate the ongoing growth of our program and culture."

The Sixers took to Instagram to express their appreciation for Ilyasova’s leadership. Ilyasova quickly embraced the role of a veteran go-to when he was traded to the Sixers in early November. Both posts below exemplify his team-first mentality.

✊🏼 A true Pro @ersanilyasova7

A post shared by Ben Simmons (@bensimmons) on

Thanks for being a great teammate @ersanilyasova7. Wishing you the best in ATL

A post shared by Rob Covington (@atf_33) on

Best of NHL: Rickard Rakell, Ducks snap Bruins' win streak at 4

Best of NHL: Rickard Rakell, Ducks snap Bruins' win streak at 4

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Rickard Rakell broke a tie with his second goal with 2:34 to play, and the Anaheim Ducks snapped Boston's four-game winning streak under new coach Bruce Cassidy with a 5-3 victory over the Bruins on Wednesday night.

Rakell also scored in the second period for the Ducks and has 24 goals in his outstanding season. Ondrej Kase, Josh Manson and Andrew Cogliano also scored for Anaheim, and Jonathan Bernier made 26 saves in his first victory since Jan. 23.

Frank Vatrano scored the tying goal in the third period for the Bruins, who hadn't lost since Cassidy replaced Claude Julien on Feb. 7. Defensemen Brandon Carlo and Zdeno Chara scored early goals, and Tuukka Rask stopped 20 shots.

Anaheim beat Boston for the seventh straight time (see full recap).

Rare goal from Russell lifts Oilers over Panthers
SUNRISE, Fla. -- Kris Russell's goal with 7:58 left was his first in more than a year and lifted the Edmonton Oilers over Florida 4-3 on Wednesday night to snap the Panthers' five-game winning streak.

Russell's goal was his first since Feb. 11, 2016, when he played for Calgary. He went goalless in his first 48 games with the Oilers.

Fellow defenseman Oscar Klefbom also scored for Edmonton, as did forwards Zack Kassian and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. Connor McDavid, who came into the night leading the NHL scoring race, had an assist on Russell's goal.

Aleksander Barkov, Colton Sceviour and Jonathan Marchessault scored for Florida. Keith Yandle had two assists for the Panthers, giving him 400 points for his career.

Cam Talbot stopped 31 shots for the Oilers, who have won their last eight games at Florida -- last losing on the Panthers' ice in 2002. James Reimer made 31 saves for the Panthers, who just completed a 5-0-0 road trip (see full recap).