For the second straight year New England will host the Baltimore Ravens in the AFC Champiosnhip game with a trip to the Super Bowl on the line.
After stopping Peyton Manning on Saturday, the Ravens will have to slow down the NFL’s most potent offense. The Patriots rang up 457 yards in beating Houston on Sunday.
In the NFC, it will be San Francisco traveling to Atlanta. The Falcons nearly squandered a 20-point lead versus Seattle before Matt Bryant connected on a 48-year field goal with 8 seconds left. Head Coach Mike Smith and quarterback Matt Ryan won their first playofff game of their careers. The Falcons will host their first ever NFC Championship game versus a 49ers team that is back in the championship game.
Atlanta is the only team not making a repeat appearance in the NFL’s final four. Last year, it was the Giants playing, and beating, the 49ers for the NFC title. Personally, I am rooting for a Harbaugh Bowl.
Abby is coming home! Pittsford's Abby Wambach, the two-time Olympic gold medalist and FIFA Women's World Player of the Year is coming back to Rochester after her rights were allocated on Friday to the Western New York Flash of the newly established eight-team National Women's Soccer League. Wambach will be joined by U.S. colleague Carli Lloyd.
The league is organized and administered by the U.S. Soccer Federation. It begins play in the spring. The other franchises are the Boston Breakers, Chicago Red Stars, FC Kansas City, Portland Thorns FC, Sky Blue FC, Washington Spirit, and Seattle Reign FC.
Sahlen Stadium will be the place to be this Summer.
And finally, Hockey is back. The Buffalo Sabres will open the season at home on Sunday, Jan. 20 against the Philadelphia Flyers. Each NHL team will play 48 games entirely against clubs within its own conference. There will be no interconference play until the Eastern and Western champions arrive at the Stanley Cup Final in June.