Are NBA Steals Born of Bad Defense

My article “The Hidden Value of the NBA Steal” sparked a lot of debate. I’m responding to several comments and questions in four parts. We posted Part 1 on Monday; here is Part 2:My initial article explored how and why steals are underrated as a box score stat. Despite the constant focus on points per game in popular discussion of players, steals are actually a better indicator of value than points. Way better.One of the most common responses to the article was the suggestion that we should consider the amount to which steals are a product of “gambling” on defense. In the comments, reader Kyle Pulek succinctly expressed the concern:I think something that you have to consider is the “risk” of attempting a steal. In a way, steals are valuable but if you try and miss you end up out of position and increasing your opponent’s ability to score on that possession. If you racked up 5 steals a game, it wouldn’t be beneficial if the other 45 possessions that you played you swung and missed and ended up behind the ball.I was a little surprised with the frequency and intensity of this objection, as I didn’t consider it a big issue. Indeed, I raised the same point in Footnote 7 (although I don’t blame anybody for not reading every footnote):Steals come at a cost as well: By gambling on defense, you sometimes give up a better shot if you fail. But, all things considered, they are probably closer to being “free” than points.The reason this didn’t concern me is that the part of the analysis that establishes the value of steals relative to other box score stats is completely oblivious to the costs and benefits of a particular stat; the analysis only cares about the corresponding increase or decrease in the team’s chances of winning.Indirect “with or without you” analyses are meant to avoid the thorny and often intractable causal complexities that lie between a thing and its effect on the bottom line. Of course, this approach has its limitations. For example, we don’t know whether steals predict a player’s impact because steals are more important than other things, or because the type of player who tends to get steals just happens to be better at helping his team win games than a similarly situated player who doesn’t. But we do know that steals predict a player’s impact extremely well, so if we’re concerned with making empirical predictions, they’re something we should pay attention to.This question usually comes from the opposite direction: When discussing the predictive value of steals with statsy-types, one of the most common responses I get is that it’s probably because steals are a defensive stat, and thus one of the only windows into a player’s defensive ability that box score stats provide. One of the more surprising side-findings in my analysis was that steals don’t seem to predict much about defense at all. If there is any contrarian element to my analysis, it is my argument that their value may stem mostly from their irreplaceability instead.Moreover, though some heavy hitters apparently disagree, going for a steal doesn’t immediately strike me as a very bad gamble. A player’s reward is ending his opponent’s possession and getting an even more valuable than normal possession for his team, while his risk is possibly giving up a better shot. Even if some of those shots are layups, the overall difference in expected value of a failed steal attempt from no steal attempt is going to be much smaller than the value of the successful attempt vs. no attempt.The one big thing we don’t know is how many attempts a player needs to get a steal. This “stealing efficiency” may vary considerably from player to player, just as efficiency-focused metrics for other box score stats do. But the observed predictive value of steals suggests that the ratio is not so dire. If anything, I could see it going in the opposite direction: Although unlikely, it’s delightfully possible that the extra value provided by players who get a lot of steals is mostly just a result of their willingness to try to get them.Finally, if you think that steals come with considerable risk, you still have to account for their predictive value somewhere, and I think your route to a plausible explanation is harder than mine: Perhaps they actually correlate to other (immeasurable) skills so strongly that it overwhelms their individually negative nature? It’s theoretically possible, but it’s not an easy case. read more

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Falcons Dunta Robinson Cleared To Practice

The Atlanta Falcons might have avoided one calamity with the news that Dunta Robinson has been cleared by the NFL’s concussion protocol program and allowed to practice on Friday.Robinson was injured in the regular-season-ending loss to the Tampa Bay Bucaneers, a game the hard-hitting cornerback — and other starters — did not need to play because the Falcons already secured home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.Losing him for their first playoff game next week against either Washington, Seattle or Minnesota would have been catastrophic. Pass-rush specialist John Abraham also was injured in the game. But he should be all right from the ankle injury by next Sunday.Robinson led with his head when he attempted to bring down Bucs running back Doug Martin and suffered the concussion.“It was very good to get Dunta back,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said to the media on Friday. “Dunta has been cleared to start practicing again. It’s good to have him back. It was a great turnaround from Sunday to Friday.”According to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Falcons had advised Robinson to stop leading with his helmet. IN 2010, he suffered a concussion trying to tackle in a similar fashion.“We address it all the time, not just with Dunta, but there is a certain strike zone that you try to hit when you’re tackling,” Smith said. “You really want to keep the head out of it.”For a while after Robinson’s injury, the Falcons would not admit he had suffered a concussion. They called it a “head injury.” A reporter asked Smith about Robinson on Monday and the coach responded that the player was “in the concussion protocol,” ending any speculation.Robinson will continue to be monitored as the Falcons go about getting ready to get out of the first round of the playoffs for the first time in four years. read more

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The Time A Guy Named Flipper Set The SingleGame NFL Receiving Record

Anderson played five more full seasons and parts of three more, gaining 100 or more yards in a game seven more times in his career, but never coming close to matching his performance in the Superdome. Then again, few have. Since November 1989, Terrell Owens (283), John Taylor (286), Jerry Rice (289), Jimmy Smith (291) and Johnson (329) all approached 336, but the record still belongs to Flipper.These days, he lives in the Atlanta area, coaches youth football, and follows his son Dres’s career. The University of Utah senior receiver, who recently suffered a season-ending knee injury, is an NFL prospect. If there’s one person Anderson would like to see rewrite the family history, it’s Dres. “It’s waiting there for you,” he’s told him. “Go get it.” The tape? It’s been a while since Anderson, now 49 and long retired from football, has seen it. There’s a VHS copy buried somewhere in his house, but like most of us, he no longer owns a VCR. Still, sharp memories remain. “Everything that was thrown to me,” Anderson said, “I just caught.” He recalled thinking afterward: This is what Michael Jordan must feel like.Until then, nobody would’ve dared compare him to MJ. Dubbed “Flipper”4From Richard Hoffer’s 1990 Sports Illustrated profile of Anderson and Henry Ellard: “Flipper, raised by grandparents in a stew of seven uncles, considers it all to be as ordinary as Ozzie and Harriet. For the record, none of these people nicknamed him Flipper. That was done by Aunt Pearl, a distant cousin of Flipper’s, who thought his crying sounded just like the critter then popular on TV.” as a baby by a relative who thought his crying made him sound like the famous dolphin, Anderson grew up in South Jersey and eventually became one of Troy Aikman’s favorite targets at UCLA. The Los Angeles Rams5The Rams moved to St. Louis before the 1995 season. took the receiver in the second round of the 1988 NFL draft, but he caught only 11 passes his rookie season. Anderson entered his second year third on the depth chart behind Aaron Cox (a first-round pick in ’88) and Ellard (a two-time first-team All-Pro). Then came an opening.At practice two days before the Rams faced the Saints that November, Ellard strained his right hamstring. This led to what seemed like an unsolvable problem. He led the NFL in receiving yards — nobody could fill his role. With Ellard on the Superdome sidelines in a blue Rams sweatshirt and a baseball cap, Anderson slid into the injured star’s spot. “Most of the time during the game it was kind of tough getting our timing down,” Everett said.Flipper was a fill-in, but unbeknownst to many, he already had proven himself capable of producing highlight-reel material. Over the first 11 games of the 1989 season, he only had 19 receptions, but averaged a league best 30.7 yards per catch. Generously listed at 6 feet and 172 pounds, Anderson could fly. “From the minute he got there until the minute he left,” said Hall of Fame offensive tackle Jackie Slater, his Rams teammate from 1988 to 1994, “our DBs used to say, ‘If I can cover Flipper Anderson on a go [route], I can cover anybody.’”The Rams (7-4) needed something out of him while facing an NFC West rival that sat one game behind them in the standings. The Saints were ferocious. They boasted four Pro Bowl linebackers: Sam Mills, Vaughan Johnson, Pat Swilling, and future Hall of Famer Rickey Jackson. “They were just ass kickers,” said Rams kicker Mike Lansford, whose bare right foot6In the ’70s and ’80s, Lansford was one of a handful of barefoot NFL place kickers. In his book “A Few Seconds of Panic”, kicking enthusiast Stefan Fatsis explained the fad: “As long as it didn’t hurt, the theory went, kicking sockless and shoeless eliminated the energy-absorbing and -dissipating layers of fabric and leather.” ended up heavily factoring into the proceedings.“Our weakness,” said former Saints cornerback Robert Massey, “was in the secondary.” Through 11 weeks, the Saints had the top-ranked run defense in the NFL. On the other hand, their pass defense ranked 22nd.ESPN aired Sunday night NFL games at the time, and before kickoff, analyst Joe Theismann explained to the audience that in Ellard’s place “Cox can do a real good job” and that if L.A. used a four-receiver set, tight end Pete Holohan would be split out wide. Theismann never mentioned Anderson. To those involved, processing the events of that evening 25 years ago still requires some suspension of disbelief. Anderson’s 336 receiving yards made up 29 percent of his season total.“You would think — 13 catches, over 300 yards — that during the game, you’d be like, ‘Man, this guy’s ballin’,” Cook said. “But it wasn’t that way. He was workmanlike. It wasn’t like he would get up and call attention to himself. It did not feel like 336 yards.”Anderson’s performance may have seemed workmanlike, but it was anything but. “There was no one better than Flipper that night,” said Everett, who in that game8Despite getting sacked six times in that game, Everett passed for a career high 454 yards. targeted the receiver 20 times. The numbers are still staggering: 13 of Anderson’s 15 catches produced a first down or a touchdown, and the ones that didn’t were still important: one went for 16 yards on second-and-20, and another went for 26 yards on second-and-32. For the most part, Anderson wasn’t simply turning short throws into big gains. By my count, 107 of his 336 yards came after the catch. In today’s NFL, where quick passing has all but replaced the running game, his screw-it-I’m-going-deep style would be rare. His 20.1 career yards per reception still ranks fourth in league history.Amazingly, Anderson’s 336-yard game wasn’t his most memorable accomplishment of that season. On Jan. 7, 1990, in overtime of a divisional playoff game against the Giants at the Meadowlands, he caught a 30-yard touchdown pass, and without breaking stride, ran into the tunnel and into the visitors’ locker room.9Anderson said it was Cox’s idea. “When the game went to overtime, he brought it up first. He said, ‘If I catch it, I’m going to the tunnel.’ I said, “Ooh, if I catch it, I’m going to the tunnel, too.’” On Oct. 27, 2013, Dres Anderson’s cell phone began lighting up with text messages from friends imploring him to turn on the Cowboys-Lions game. Detroit receiver Calvin Johnson, they explained, was having an impossibly prolific day. By late in the fourth quarter, the All-Pro had gained 290 receiving yards.To Anderson, this more or less constituted a family emergency. After all, his father was Willie “Flipper” Anderson, the former Rams wideout who had set the record Johnson was chasing. In a primetime clash against the Saints on Nov. 26, 1989, Flipper had piled up 336 receiving yards, eclipsing the single-game NFL record of 309.Almost a quarter-century later, Flipper’s record was on the verge of being broken. “I’ve never rooted for the Cowboys in my life,” Dres tweeted that afternoon last fall, “but I pray they hold down Megatron for these last two minutes!!!”His prayers were answered. Despite hauling in two long passes during his team’s final, game-winning drive, Johnson finished with 329 yards, seven short of Flipper’s mark. “I thought it was going down,” Dres said recently. “Thankfully it didn’t.”It’s been 25 years since his historic night, and since then Flipper Anderson has become a piece of obscure sports trivia. He once even popped up as the answer to the $125,000 question — “What NFL player holds the record for most receiving yards gained in a single game?” — on a Super Bowl week episode of “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?”1The choices were: A. Randy Moss, B. Jerry Rice, C. Flipper Anderson, and D. Stephone Paige. After asking the audience, the majority of which guessed Rice, the contestant decided not to answer, instead walking away with a $64,000 prize. But reducing the accomplishment to game show fodder undersells its brilliance. Before defense-hindering rule changes and sophisticated scoring strategies led to the arcadization of offensive statistics, Anderson made “Tecmo Bowl” come to life.“Those weren’t short easy passes,” said then Rams quarterback Jim Everett. “He was going up in traffic, pulling them down and beating the corner. He had a special night.”How special? In 1989, Anderson’s teammate Henry Ellard averaged an NFL-best 98.7 receiving yards per game. In games where pass catchers had at least one reception, those catchers averaged 34.6 receiving yards.2While the NFL has become more pass happy, that figure actually hasn’t changed much. In 2013, pass catchers averaged 35.9 receiving yards in games where they had at least one reception. Anderson’s night was 9.0 standard deviations from the average.Football Outsiders editor-in-chief Aaron Schatz, whose site has compiled extensive data from every NFL season going back to 1989, said Anderson had “the best game of any receiver in our advanced stats. Period. By a significant amount.” To measure individual offensive output, FO uses a metric called Defense-Adjusted Yards Above Replacement. That evening in New Orleans, Anderson racked up 160 receiving DYAR, the most in at least the last 25 years. Jaguars receiver Jimmy Smith’s 141 DYAR in Week 2 of the 2000 season is the second-best total. The gap between those two performances is almost the difference between Smith’s and the list’s 10th best.3The seventh best, you’ll notice, is Anderson’s teammate, Ellard. Everett could sling it. As Schatz reminded me: “That’s a big gap.”The numbers show how impressive Anderson’s record was, but they don’t show the spectacular way he set it. For that, let’s go to the tape. For most of the night, the Rams looked hopeless. They piled up penalties, committed turnovers, and allowed Everett to take some nauseatingly vicious hits. With the Saints leading 17-3 in the fourth quarter, New Orleans defensive lineman Jumpy Geathers recovered Rams running back Greg Bell’s fumble. Everett said that across the country “you could hear every television click off.”If the game had ended at that moment, it still would’ve been a special night for Anderson. In 55 minutes of action, he had tallied career highs in catches (8) and yards (171). But then he caught a 46-yard pass and the Rams soon scored, making it 17-10. On the next Rams possession, Everett threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Anderson and it was tied.When the game reached overtime, L.A. simplified its strategy. “I didn’t care if they had two guys over there,” Everett said, “I’m finding a way to get it to Flipper.” By then, Anderson had 13 catches for 296 yards.During the Rams’ first overtime drive,7On that drive, Anderson also drew a 36-yard pass interference penalty. Anderson caught a short pass on a crossing route, shook trailing Saints cornerback Toi Cook, and sprinted toward the sideline for a 14-yard gain. ESPN play-by-play announcer Mike Patrick quickly perked up. “Flipper Anderson has just set an NFL record: 310 yards receiving,” he said. “What a marvelous night.” Anderson erased a mark made by his friend, Chiefs receiver Stephone Paige, who in 1985 racked up 309 receiving yards in a game against the Chargers. But Flipper wasn’t finished.On third-and-11 from the Saints’ 40, Anderson lined up outside. After the snap, he made a quick inside move to gain a step on cornerback Milton Mack then ran straight ahead. Everett’s throw came high and fast, so he jumped up to corral it. With legs splayed and arms fully extended, the bare-handed Anderson made a fingertip grab. It was his best catch of the night.Saints defensive backs Mack and Dave Waymer tackled Anderson, but not before he reached the 14 yard line. At that moment, Anderson rolled over on his back and looked up at Waymer, who was standing over him. “I was just done,” Anderson said. “They had to come get me off the field.”He eventually made it to the bench, where cameras caught Ellard congratulating him. On the very next play, Lansford hit a 31-yard field goal to give the Rams a 20-17 victory. What you don’t see in the above clip is the way ESPN closed the broadcast. It being 1989, the network cut to a quick shot of Anderson flashing the “I’m number one!” sign followed by a freeze frame of the record-setting receiver and teammate Aaron Cox leaping together for a giant high-five. read more

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Ohio State womens gymnastics takes 4th at NCAA Regionals

The Ohio State women’s gymnastics team lost the battle for the gold this past weekend after four months of preparation. After a season filled with great victories and humbling falls, the women’s gymnastics team’s 2013 season came to a bittersweet close as it took fourth place at the NCAA Regional Championships Saturday evening at St. John Arena. “I really thought we had a chance,” said junior all-around specialist Sarah Miller. “Other teams did better and scores show for it … I thought we had a chance, I really did.” The Buckeyes finished with a 196.050 after competing with No. 5 LSU, No. 6 UCLA, No. 17 Arizona, Central Michigan and North Carolina State along with individual competitors. LSU took the first-place title with 197.275, UCLA came in second with 196.950 and Arizona took third with 196.100. “Coming in as a fourth-seeded team, we really had nothing to lose,” said junior all-around gymnast Melanie Shaffer. “We didn’t have a ranking to defend and we were at home in our own arena so we just used the energy all around us.” The season hasn’t ended for all of the Buckeyes, though, as Miller and Shaffer will go on to represent OSU at the NCAA Nationals. “It was a really good beat for us,” said OSU women’s gymnastics coach Carey Fagan. “Obviously we would have liked to be top two, but UCLA and LSU are really great teams, so we are really excited to be taking two individuals to nationals and looking forward to hopefully getting some All-Americans out there.” Shaffer qualified with a fourth-place finish in the all-around after earning a score of 39.325. “I’m really excited (about) making it individually,” Shaffer said. “It would have been better if our whole team would have went, but I’m still looking at the positives and excited about going to California, and I have another teammate that will be going with me, so it’s a really fun and cool experience to look forward to.” Miller excelled at the balance beam, tying with LSU’s Jessie Jordan for first-place and career-best with a 9.950 and qualifying her to move forward to nationals. “I’m excited,” said Miller, smiling while catching her breath fresh off the floor. “It stinks to be going without your team because the first time I ever went was with my team, so it’s disappointing, but at the same time it’s a learning experience for everybody.” In 2012, the Buckeyes advanced to the NCAA Nationals for the first time since 1990. This season alone, Miller earned five Big Ten Event Specialist of the Week awards and snagged a first-place title on the balance beam at the Big Ten Championships in March, a title she tied for with senior teammate Aly Marohn. “They are the first Big Ten champions we have had on any of the four events since 1999,” assistant coach Meredith Yonushonis said in an email. Marohn, a senior balance beam specialist, received 28th place for balance beam at the NCAA regionals, but said she understands that the past is in the past. “I’m not going to lie, I’m really disappointed,” Marohn said. “That was the best routine of my career and I couldn’t have done anything different.” Marohn was shy of advancing to nationals by 0.025. “Aly had the best routine of her life. I mean, it was amazing, so I’m extremely proud of her for ending her career on that,” Miller said. For the 2014 season, the Buckeyes will be losing two seniors off of their roster of 15, but Fagan said the five current juniors will move up in their places. “Next year, the senior class is going to be really strong, season-wise and athletically as well,” Fagan said. “We have to be sharp.” Fagan said she was satisfied with the way the team’s season ended. “One of our mottos this season was to be undeniable, and you have to be undeniably good,” Fagan said. “Which we did.” The NCAA Championships are scheduled for April 19-21 in Los Angeles. read more

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Chris Holtmann recognized during first quarter of Ohio StateOklahoma game

Ohio State men’s basketball coach Chris Holtmann speaks to the media after an event titled “An Evening With Coach Holtmann” on Aug. 1, 2017. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports EditorThe Ohio State fan base caught its first glimpse of its new men’s basketball coach, Chris Holtmann, when the coach was introduced with 10:16 remaining in the first quarter of Ohio State’s home opener against Oklahoma.Holtmann comes to Ohio State after three seasons at Butler, spent from 2014-17. The Bulldogs posted a 70-31 record and made an NCAA appearance every season. He was named the John McLendon Coach of the Year and Big East Coach of the Year at the end of last season.Holtmann previously held a season-ticket holder event at the Schottenstein Center on Aug. 1.What a tremendous welcome Buckeye Nation! Go Bucks! pic.twitter.com/Msh3iNTSeg— Chris Holtmann (@ChrisHoltmann) September 10, 2017 read more

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Football Members of Ohio State defense and special teams receive AllBig Ten

Ohio State redshirt senior linebacker Chris Worley (35), redshirt senior defensive lineman Tyquan Lewis (59) and redshirt junior defensive end Sam Hubbard (6), prepare for a play during the third quarter of the OSU vs. MSU game on Nov. 11 at Ohio Stadium. Ohio State won 48-3. Credit: Ris Twigg | Assistant Photo EditorSeven Ohio State defenders and three special teamers were honored on All-Big Ten teams, the conference announced Tuesday morning.Defensive ends Nick Bosa, Tyquan Lewis and Sam Hubbard, cornerback Denzel Ward, safeties Jordan Fuller and Damon Webb and defensive tackle Dre’Mont Jones represented the Ohio State defense, while punter Drue Chrisman, kicker Sean Nuernberger and kick returner Parris Campbell came from special teams. Cornerback Damon Arnette, defensive end Jalyn Holmes and linebackers Jerome Baker and Chris Worley were named honorable mention All-Big Ten.The conference named Bosa and Lewis first-team All-Big Ten defenders by both coaches and media. Bosa has accumulated six sacks and one forced fumble. He also has 28 tackles, including 12.5 tackles for loss. The reigning Big Ten Defensive Lineman of the Year, Lewis has picked up five sacks and 6.5 tackles for loss. He also has 14 tackles, two recovered fumbles and one forced fumble.Ward was named to the first-team All-Big Ten by the media and the second-team by the coaches. He ranks third in the conference with 13 passes defended, and has one interception. Ward blocked a punt in Ohio State’s win against Penn State and an extra point in Saturday’s win versus Michigan.Hubbard was named second-team all-conference by coaches and the media. He has 36 tackles, the most by any Buckeye lineman. He has 4.5 sacks and 10 tackles for loss.Webb, Fuller and Jones were selected to the third-team All-Big Ten team. Webb, who was picked to the media team, leads Ohio State with three interceptions. Fuller was selected to the team by the coaches and has two picks. Jones was named third-team by the conference’s coaches and has five tackles for loss, including a sack.Campbell was voted second-team All-Big Ten by the media for his 36.6-yard kick-return average on nine returns, which includes an 82-yard kick return against UNLV. Chrisman and Nuernberger were named third-team all-conference. Chrisman ranks third in the Big Ten in punt average, and Nuernberger has hit 14-of-17 field goals and made all 65 extra point attempts. read more

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Man arrested after two bodies found in Cardiff centre

first_imgWorkers clean the scene Cardiff Credit:PA Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. “South Wales Police is investigating the deaths of a man and woman, following the discovery of two bodies in Queen Street Cardiff.”Emergency Services attended the scene at approximately 05:50hrs on 28 September 2016.”A man has been arrested and is currently in police custody and police are not looking for anyone else in connection with this incident at this time.”Further information will be released when available and appropriate. In addition, there may be some disruption in Queen Street due to police cordons and we ask for the patience of the public while investigations are ongoing.”Police ruled out that the two deaths were terror related. A spokesman for South Wales Police said: “We can say that at this stage. Further details will be provided shortly.”Cardiff Queen Street is a half-mile long street and visited by tens and thousands of shoppers every day.Stores including Topshop, Zara, River Island, Boots and Primark – situated within the cordon – remained closed.Disruption on the high streetOffice worker John Thomas, 27, said: “I was coming in to work and I found the street was sealed off. They said the road was going to closed all day.” Police and forensics officers at the scene in Queen Street Two shop workers were stabbed on a busy Cardiff shopping street this morning as a 20-year-old was arrested over the double killing.Zoe Morgan, a 21-year-old window dresser, and shop assistant Lee Simmons, 34,  – both Matalan employees – were attacked and killed as they left the store.A colleague said: “This is a terrible tragedy. They had only started seeing each other and made a lovely couple. We are all in bits and no-one could face opening the store today.”The couple had been together for just under four months after meeting while working at Matalan, colleagues said.Both met while working together and Mr Simmons dubbed Ms Morgan his ‘Tinkerbell’.Dozens of police officers flooded Cardiff’s main Queen Street – one of Britain’s busiest shopping streets – at around 6am after the bodies were found in pools of blood outside high street stores Boots and Matalan.The city centre street was cordoned off by uniformed officers – and dozens of businesses were forced to close and hundreds of officers workers were sent home.Workers heading to their jobs reported seeing “a pool of blood” outside a Boots store on the city centre.One man said: “One of the victims was found outside Boots in a pool of blood – the other was just over the other side of the road outside Matalan.”The police then arrived and sealed off the whole street and forensics officers set up a tent over the area.Police confirm murdersPolice say the man arrested is a 20-year-old from Newport, Gwent, and they are not looking for anyone else.A spokesman for South Wales Police said: “Police are attending an incident that was reported to us at around 5.50am.”center_img Workers clean the scene Cardiff  Sarah Ridings was due to attend work at Matalan but was sent home. “I don’t really know what’s going on,” she said.”I manage a team of women across Cardiff, but obviously most of our work is in Queen Street, which is closed. I’m trying to get in touch with head office and find out more and put a plan of action in place. it’s shocking.”A spokesman for the Welsh Ambulance Service said: “We had a call at approximately 5.50 am to an incident in the Queen Street area of Cardiff.”We sent a paramedic in a rapid response car, three emergency ambulances and the Trust’s Hazardous Area Response Team to the scene.” Police and forensics officers at the scene in Queen StreetCredit:PAlast_img read more

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Rows over study which claims antidepressants double suicide risks

first_imgAnti-depressants could double the risk of feelings that could lead to suicide, according to a new study which has triggered furious rows.Researchers behind the Danish review said the study demolished “potentially lethal misconceptions” about the safety of the drugs, which are taken by more than 4 million Britons a year.The analysis examined 13 studies, to see what impact the drugs had on patients who did not suffer from depression.Scientists said these patients were selected, because previous studies linking suicide and antidepressants had been dismissed by those who said the deaths must have been caused by the mental health condition, rather than the pills. Earlier this year, a study raised concerns about the safety of anti-depressants in childrenCredit:Alamy Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Prof Phil Cowen, Professor of Psychopharmacology, at Oxford University, said: “These side-effects are clinically significant, frequently distressing and an important topic for discussion between patient and clinician. “However, the notion that they are necessarily indicative of violence and suicide seems to me rather like arguing that transient annoyance with a colleague is much the same thing as attempted murder.”Earlier this year, a review led by Prof Gotzsche suggested that antidepressants double the risk of suicide and aggressive behaviour in under-18s. ‘The notion that these signs are necessarily indicative of violence and suicide seems to me like arguing that transient annoyance with a colleague is much the same thing as attempted murder’Prof Phil Cowen, Professor of Psychopharmacology, Oxford University sad child Concerns have previously been raised about the safety of anti-depressants for childrenCredit:Alamycenter_img “This manuscript claims to show that antidepressants double the risk of suicide and violence, but it does not. The methodology is fatally flawed and leads to conclusions that are highly misleading”, he said. “If ‘nervousness, anxiety, tremor, bad dreams and agitation events’ are risk factors for suicide or violence, then probably the majority of people in the UK would be at risk of suicide or violence, which obviously isn’t so,” Prof Goodwin said. The review found that when healthy patients were given the pills, levels of side-effects, such as anxiety and nervousness almost doubled.Prof Peter Gotzsche, of the Nordic Cochrane Centre, said such feelings could be considered as “precursors to suicidality or violence”.He said too many people were reliant on drugs to deal with everyday problems, without realising that they could increase their risk of suicide. Drugs ‘These drugs are being handed out to get people through a divorce, to go through exams, they have become ‘mother’s little helper’ in the way Valium used to be’Prof Peter Gotzsche, the Nordic Cochrane Centre “These drugs are being handed out to get people through a divorce, to go through exams,  they have become ‘mother’s little helper’ in the way Valium used to be,” he said. But other experts last night criticised the study, with one scientist from Oxford University describing the research as “fatally flawed.”Prof Guy Goodwin, Past President of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology and Professor of Psychiatry, University of Oxford, said it was “absurd” to describe symptoms such as anxiety and nervousness as events potentially leading to suicide or violence.last_img read more

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Father of two children killed in house fire found hours later in

first_imgDCI Martin Slevin talks outside a house which caught fire in the early hours of Friday morningCredit: Aaron Chown/SWNS.com The detective confirmed that the fire started in the hallway of the house.He added: “I can confirm that at 7.15am this morning, in Whitmore Road in the Butterton area of Newcastle Under Lyme, a black Vauxhall Insignia was found with significant fire damage.”A male that was found with that vehicle is currently in hospital with critical injuries.”He added that the children’s mother was helping the police investigation.Locals made desperate attempts to help the children after the blaze broke out. The father of two children who died after a suspected arson attack on their home is critically ill in hospital, police said.A boy aged eight and a girl, six, were pronounced dead in hospital after the fire in the hallway of a house in Birmingham in the early hours of Friday.Detective Chief Inspector Martin Slevin, of West Midlands Police, said that their father was later found badly hurt with a burnt-out car in Newcastle-Under-Lyme, Staffordshire. The property ehere two children have died in a fireCredit: Caters News Agency DCI Martin Slevin talks outside a house which caught fire in the early hours of Friday morning The property ehere two children have died in a fire Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Lashman Sehmar, 66, whose son Raghbir owns the house next door, said he had spoken to his son’s female tenant on Friday morning.He said: “She told me that the neighbour over the road from her rushed into the house and picked up one of the children and brought it on to the lawn.”West Midlands Ambulance Service said its units rushed to the scene and found “two children, a boy and a girl, who were in cardiac arrest”.A spokesman added: “Bystanders had already started CPR, which crews took over before also administering advanced life support.”Treatment continued en route to hospital, with the boy being taken to Sandwell Hospital and the girl to Birmingham Children’s Hospital.”Unfortunately, shortly after their arrival at the hospitals, it became clear that nothing could be done to save either child and they were confirmed deceased.”A woman at the scene who did not want to be identified said she was a care worker colleague of the children’s mother.She said: “It’s just so wicked what’s happened – we’re just trying to deal with it.”She was supposed to come to work this morning so we tried calling her but there was no answer.”I’m sorry … I can’t go on.” Speaking from where the children died in Hamstead, he said: “We believe these two incidents are connected and we are not looking for anyone else in connection with the fire here.”Mr Slevin said that detectives were still trying to establish the cause of the fire, which broke out shortly before 3.40am on Friday.A post-mortem examination is due to take place on the children on Saturday.last_img read more

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Jacob ReesMogg admits Im a complete weed after getting caught up in

first_imgCrowds gathered round before the protest was calmed by security around ten minutes later.Mr Rees-Mogg said: “They shouted at me but they weren’t going to hit me. They didn’t want to talk about politics, they just wanted to stop the event.”They shouted no platform for Tory scum and other insults, but  I’m of the sticks and stones school of thought.“I wanted to stop anyone being hit because the whole thing would have degenerated. I didn’t think anyone was going to hit me so I felt quite safe intervening. I spoke afterwards, I was there for ages. There were lots of questions from the audience afterwards.”  Jacob Rees-Mogg is caught in a scuffle during a talk at the UWE in Bristol  “They stayed and screamed at him when he went to go talk to them.”She said Mr Rees-Mogg stayed incredibly calm and simply tried to calm everyone down. Jacob Rees-Mogg is caught in a scuffle during a talk at the UWE in Bristol  Jacob Rees-Mogg in happier times Jacob Rees-Mogg is caught in a scuffle during a talk at the UWE in Bristol  Mr Rees-Mogg  tried to address his detractors calmly but the confrontation soon became violent.”Someone got punched and it got very pushy,” student Chloe Kaye said. “Eventually most of the masked men left but one of the unmasked men remained calling him a ‘racist, sexist, misogynist.”Everyone was shocked, I was pretty scared especially the longer it went on and the more pushy it got.” Jacob Rees-Mogg admitted he was “a complete weed” after getting caught up in a fracas whilst giving a speech at a universityThe high profile Conservative MP was apparently pushed and shoved as punches were thrown at the event at the University of the West of England in Bristol.Footage posted online  showed the talk descend into violence with Mr Rees-Mogg caught in the middle of the scuffle.The Eurosceptic MP last night told The Daily Telegraph that he was  “absolutely fine” and had endured “worse confrontations with The Guardian. “He had been due to address the UWE Bristol Politics and International Relations Society.Onlookers said he had just arrived at the event with no security when he was confronted by a group of protesters.One attendee said that the protesters hurled abuse at the him, calling him a “nazi,” a “fascist and a racist” whilst preventing him from talking. In footage of the event posted on Twitter, Mr Rees-Mogg could be seen attempting to quell the disturbance before being pushed himself.He was allegedly seen shouting “back off!” and pushing a protester wearing sunglasses away from another attendee.Miss Kaye, who is reading politics at Bristol University, added: “I am not a Tory supporter myself but the whole room was backing up Rees-Mogg.”Most of us are students who are just wanting to listen to different views from different people and the interruption was frustrating. Jacob Rees-Mogg is caught in a scuffle during a talk at the UWE in Bristol  “It was quite shocking to see it, they just stormed in from the back and wouldn’t leave and stop screaming. Jacob Rees-Mogg in happier timesCredit:Paul Grover Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

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