Tech News

Samsung Said to Consider $10-Billion Texas Chipmaking Plant

Samsung is considering spending more than $10 billion (roughly Rs. 73,000 crores) building its most advanced logic chipmaking plant in the US, a major investment it hopes will win more American clients and help it catch up with industry leader Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.

The world’s largest memory chip and smartphone maker is in discussions to locate a facility in Austin, Texas, capable of fabricating chips as advanced as 3 nanometres in the future, people familiar with the matter said. Plans are preliminary and subject to change but for now the aim is to kick off construction this year, install major equipment from 2022, then begin operations as early as 2023, they said. While the investment amount could fluctuate, Samsung’s plans would mean upwards of $10 billion (roughly Rs. 73,000 crores) to bankroll the project, one of the people said.

Samsung is taking advantage of a concerted US government effort to counter China’s rising economic prowess and lure back home some of the advanced manufacturing that over the past decades has gravitated toward Asia. The hope is that such production bases in the US will galvanise local businesses and support American industry and chip design. Intel troubles ramping up on technology and its potential reliance in the future on TSMC and Samsung for at least some of its chipmaking only underscored the extent to which Asian giants have forged ahead in recent years.

The envisioned plant will be its first in the US to use extreme ultraviolet lithography, the standard for next-generation silicon, the people said, asking not to be identified talking about internal deliberations. Asked about plans for a US facility, Samsung said in an email no decision has yet been made.

“If Samsung really wants to realize its goal to become the top chipmaker by 2030, it needs massive investment in the US to catch up with TSMC,” said Greg Roh, senior vice president at HMC Securities. “TSMC is likely to keep making progress in process nodes to 3nm at its Arizona plant and Samsung may do the same. One challenging task is to secure EUV equipment now, when Hynix and Micron are also seeking to purchase the machines.”

If Samsung goes ahead, it would effectively go head-to-head on American soil with TSMC, which is on track to build its own $12 billion (roughly Rs. 87,650 crores) chip plant in Arizona by 2024. Samsung is trying to catch TSMC in the so-called foundry business of making chips for the world’s corporations — a particularly pivotal capability given a deepening shortage of semiconductors in recent weeks.

Under Samsung family scion Jay Y. Lee, the company has said it wants to be the biggest player in the $400 billion (roughly Rs. 29,22,400 crores) chip industry. It plans to invest $116 billion (roughly Rs. 8,47,500 crores) into its foundry and chip design businesses over the next decade, aiming to catch TSMC by offering chips made using 3-nanometre technology in 2022.

It already dominates the market for memory chips and is trying to increase its presence in the more profitable market for logic devices, such as the processors that run smartphones and computers. It already counts Qualcomm and Nvidia as customers, companies that historically relied on TSMC exclusively. It has two EUV plants, one near its main chip site in Hwaseong, south of Seoul, and another coming online nearby at Pyeongtaek.

To close a deal, Samsung may need time to negotiate potential incentives with President Joe Biden’s administration. The company has hired people in Washington DC to lobby on behalf of the deal and is ready to go ahead with the new administration in place, the people said. Tax benefits and subsidies will ease Samsung’s financial burden, but the company may go ahead even without major incentives, one of the people said.

Samsung has been looking into overseas chipmaking for years. Intensifying trade tensions between the US and China and now COVID-19 are stoking uncertainty over the reliability and economics of the global supply chain. Plants in the US could help the Korean chipmaker strike better deals with key clients in the US, particularly in competition with TSMC.

From Microsoft to Amazon and Google, the world’s largest cloud computing firms are increasingly designing their own silicon, aiming to tailor chips to power their vast datacentres more efficiently. All need manufacturers like TSMC or Samsung to turn their blueprints into reality.

Samsung’s US branch purchased land in October right next to its existing Austin fab, which is capable of running older processes. The Austin City Council held a meeting in December to discuss Samsung’s request to rezone that parcel of land for industrial development, according to meeting minutes.

Some analysts question Samsung’s ability to carve out a significant share of a market dominated by TSMC, which is spending a record $28 billion (roughly Rs. 2,04,560 crores) this year to ensure it remains at the forefront of both technology and sheer capacity. For its part, Samsung’s semiconductor division spent $26 billion (roughly Rs. 1,89,900 crores) on capital expenditure in 2020, but that’s been largely in support of its dominant memory business and not all of its expertise in making memory is directly relevant to creating advanced logic chips.

Processors are more complex to manufacture than memory and their production yields are harder to control and scale up in the same way. Foundry customers also require bespoke solutions, imposing another barrier to rapid expansion and also making Samsung dependent on customers’ designs. But the Korean giant can draw confidence from its work with Nvidia, whose chief executive officer has sung Samsung’s praises in collaborating on the manufacturing for its latest graphics card silicon.

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Headline USA Politics

Fired FBI director James Comey says Biden should consider pardoning Trump for the Capitol riot

Fired FBI director James Comey has said Joe Biden should consider pardoning Donald Trump for the Capitol riot even though the president ‘belongs in jail.’ 

Comey said he was ‘sickened’ by last week’s storming of the Capitol and ‘angered’ by the lax security which allowed the Trump mob to run amok, leaving five people dead.

He argued that impeaching Trump would be ‘good for our country’ and said that the ‘lawless nihilist’ should be ousted from the White House before Joe Biden’s inauguration. 

But he stopped short of calling for a prosecution for Trump, who has previously threatened Comey with ‘many years in jail’ over the Russia report.

‘I obviously think he belongs in jail but I don’t think pursuing that is in the best interest of the entire nation,’ Comey said.

The BBC’s Emily Maitlis asked whether Biden ought to pardon Trump in the same way that Gerald Ford did Richard Nixon after Watergate in 1974.

‘I don’t know, he should at least consider it,’ Comey said. ‘As part of healing the country and getting us to a place where we can focus on things that are going to matter over the next four years, I think Joe Biden is going to have to at least think about that.’ 

Comey said that, although 'Trump isn't a genius,' he would probably figure out that accepting a pardon would be an admission of guilt and choose to reject it

Fired FBI director James Comey last night said Donald Trump ‘should be in jail’ for the riot inside the Capitol but said that Joe Biden should consider pardoning him

Comey said that ousting Trump before Biden's inauguration was the right thing to do, but stopped short of calling for the president to be locked up (Trump pictured outside the White House in September, 2019)

Comey said that ousting Trump before Biden’s inauguration was the right thing to do, but stopped short of calling for the president to be locked up (Trump pictured outside the White House in September, 2019)

Comey, whose new book is out this week, said he believes that Trump ‘might figure out’ that by accepting a pardon he admits guilt and so he would probably reject it. 

After Ford pardoned Nixon, the predecessor made a statement of contrition. 

House Republicans have called Nancy Pelosi’s impeachment effort cynical, political and unnecessarily divisive.  

Comey said those who said such things were ‘not worthy of a response.’

Speaking of last Wednesday’s riot, which saw lawmakers barricaded inside their offices as gunfire sounded on the Hill, Comey called the mob ‘domestic terrorists.’

He said: ‘I was sickened as I hope not just all Americans but all human beings were by an attack on a symbol of democracy, the center of democracy for our country and a symbol for the whole world.

‘And I was also angered as a former law enforcement official. For the life of me I can’t understand why that hill was not adequately defended.

‘I think it’s going to be very important for our country to take a look back as we did after 9/11 and understand what happened and why, so it never happens again.’ 

The FBI has warned of further violence ahead of Biden’s inauguration on January 20, telling their staff to prepare for riots across all 50 states. 

Comey was asked whether the MAGA movement represented an extremist threat.

He replied: ‘There’s a reason the American people associate the red hats with something racist and and that they should be fearful of.

‘It’s probably an exaggeration because there’s so many millions of Americans who are not violent people they’re not racist people they’re just been people who’ve been fooled.’

Maitlis asked: ‘Would you see it as a domestic threat now?’

Comey answered: ‘Oh definitely – I’m not talking about the MAGA movement as a whole but significant aspects of – and you saw it live and on television at Capitol Hill – of those people who consider themselves devotees of Donald Trump are people that I would classify as domestic terrorists.’

Trump earlier this week declared a state of emergency in DC as the police briefed House Democrats on three plots to attack the Capitol – including one described as ‘the largest armed protest in American history.’

Thousands of National Guard troops have been drafted in to secure the Hill and the secret service has launched a massive operation to protect Biden’s inauguration ceremony. 

But Comey, who presided over the agency during two inaugurations, said he had the utmost confidence the ceremony would go ahead undisturbed.

‘This for American security services is the Super Bowl of security,’ he said.

‘We know how to secure to completely lock down a large piece of ground and I’m confident that will be done but at the same time I know the threat is real.’ 

The flash of a police munition lights up the steps of the Capitol during the invasion by a Trump-incited mob on Wednesday

The flash of a police munition lights up the steps of the Capitol during the invasion by a Trump-incited mob on Wednesday 

Members of Congress are seen running for cover as protesters attempted to enter the House Chamber

Members of Congress are seen running for cover as protesters attempted to enter the House Chamber

The protesters used flag poles and other objects to break doors and windows around the Capitol building

The protesters used flag poles and other objects to break doors and windows around the Capitol building  

Hundreds of Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol on January 6 in a bid to block the certification of Joe Biden's victory

Hundreds of Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol on January 6 in a bid to block the certification of Joe Biden’s victory

He was pressed on this point and asked why it had been allowed to happen in the first place – the FBI must have been well aware that thousands of Trump supporters were heading to Washington DC.

But while Comey said he was unable to pass judgment on that, he said he believed that the current FBI director Christopher Wray may have deliberately kept a low profile over the last three years to avoid upsetting Trump.

Comey, whose firing led to the Mueller investigation, said: ‘I think the FBI director who followed me has been very careful to maintain a lower profile so that he doesn’t get fired by an erratic president and have the FBI decapitated at a critical time in our nation.

‘I bet he’s thinking that right now, this week it’s important not to let the Eye of Sauron fall on you and and have the FBI director fired.’

The Eye of Sauron refers to the evil all-seeing eye in the Lord of the Rings books by English author J.R.R. Tolkein. 

The former FBI chief said he hoped that Trump would be ignored by the Biden administration and the American people over the next four years.

‘The best decision for the United States of America will be not to grant Donald Trump the platform that prosecuting him would give him for every day for three or four years in the nation’s capital as United States versus Trump.

‘I think the better thing for our country and our new president is to push Donald Trump to the side a bit.

‘I’d rather the TV lights go out and he stand on the lawn at Mar-a-Lago shouting at cars in his bathrobe where none of us can hear that.’ 

Headline USA

5 warnings to consider before reuniting with your loved ones even if they have already been vaccinated against COVID-19 | The State

According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) So far 6’688,231 people in the US have received the first dose of the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, and more than 22 million doses have been distributed.

After health care personnel and residents of long-term care facilities, those who follow the vaccination plan are essential workers, older than 75 years and then those older than 65. However, it is important consider some warnings before reuniting with loved ones even if they have already been vaccinated against COVID-19.

The doctor Leana wen, an emergency specialist and visiting professor at George Washington University’s Milken Institute School of Public Health, gave CNN some recommendations to consider when it comes time for some family members to receive their vaccinations.

Two doses

First, it is important to get both doses of the vaccine before considering meeting with someone else. Once a full vaccination is received, wait an additional three to six weeks for the body to develop an optimal degree of immune protection which, according to its developers, is around 95 percent. And this means that there is still a 5 percent chance of getting it, although with less severe symptoms than if you didn’t have the vaccine.

It is not known if it reduces the transmission of the virus

One of the disadvantages of the vaccine is that scientists do not know if it will be effective in preventing transmission of the virus; that is there is a chance that some people behave as carriers despite being vaccinated. This means that in a family or friend gathering, a person infected with COVID-19 could infect those who have not received the vaccine. And the only way to know if the vaccine stops transmission is to apply it and observe the results.

Protective measures still need to be maintained

Receiving the vaccine does not mean that we can go back to how our life was before the pandemic. Although the vaccine reduces the risk, it does not eliminate it completely, so you and your loved ones will still be at risk of contagion. For a vaccinated older person who wants to see their grandchildren, for example, Dr. Wen recommends that it be outdoors and at a distance of six feet. If you want to spend time with them indoors, he suggests that the whole family quarantine themselves for at least 10 days and have tests done before the encounter.

When everyone is finally vaccinated …

Once all members of a family have received both doses of the vaccine and wait a few weeks to get the maximum immune benefit from the drug, it is likely that they can be reunited with some safety., but without engaging in risky behavior. Why? Because even if a member of a family is already vaccinated, it is not known if they can transmit the virus if they have contact with it even if they do not get sick. In other words, we still do not know if a vaccinated person can infect other people who are not vaccinated outside their family circle.

Until when then will we resume socialization?

The expert points out that the end of the pandemic could really happen when we achieve herd immunity, and this requires that at least 85 percent of Americans get vaccinated. Considering that trials of the vaccine in children are just beginning, it is likely that by the end of 2021 an entire family will have vaccines.

Wen emphasizes that the vaccine does not mean that we can resume our life in 2019, but rather it is one more tool to reduce the risk of becoming ill, even seriously ill and dying. “Wearing a mask is another similar tool, as is social distancing, and we want to continue using as many tools as we can to protect ourselves,” he says.


Sports UK

Van de Beek sent Netherlands warning and is urged to consider move away

Former Netherlands star Ronald de Boer admits Donny van de Beek may have to leave Manchester United if he has any European Championship ambitions.

The Dutchman moved to Old Trafford from Ajax in the summer but has struggled for opportunities.

Most of his minutes have come as a sub but he wasn’t selected for any of the games over Christmas or New Year.

It has come as a surprise with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer regularly having to defend his decision to omit van de Beek.

De Boer’s brother, Frank, leads the national team and Ronald fears he will soon be faced with a decision as he prepares for the tournament in the summer.

Donny van de Beek has been unable to nail down a first team spot at Man Utd

The Dutch are in a group with Ukraine, Austria and North Macedonia.

They may not be blessed with the talent they once were, but it remains a precarious predicament for van de Beek.

De Boer has suggested crunch talks between the 23-year-old and the club which may result in him seeking pastures new.

He told AD : “The European Championship is coming, he will undoubtedly want to be there.

“Maybe it would be good for him to discuss with the club exactly what they want with him.

“If the view on playing time does not improve, he may have to declare that he should be rented or even sold.

The midfielder’s international place could be under threat

“You have to be lucky every now and then. Of course it doesn’t look great now, but with a great performance it can suddenly change completely.

“We also don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes.

“Perhaps they have made certain agreements with his transfer, they will get him ready for next year this season. That always remains a bit of a guess.”

Solskjaer though has highlighted the time needed to settle in the Premier League.

The United boss also cited the amount of midfielders he has to pick from as a reason behind his lack of minutes.

California Headline USA Politics

Trump instructs Secretary of State Pompeo to consider classifying Antifa terror group

Donald Trump has ordered Mike Pompeo to consider classifying Antifa as a terrorist group to prevent its ‘members’ from entering the country.

In a letter to the Secretary of State, Trump says that Antifa has been responsible for ‘recent lawlessness,’ citing riots in Louisville, Kentucky and Portland, and says it has ‘exploited tragedies to advance a radical, leftist, anarchist, and often violent agenda.’

Trump says he wants to restrict the movements of any migrants associated with Antifa, ‘in light of federal laws that restrict the entry of aliens associated with terrorist organisations.’

Tuesday’s executive order comes as hundreds of right-wing rioters have descended on Washington ahead of Congress voting to affirm the Electoral College vote 306-232 victory of Joe Biden in the presidential election.

Last night, Trump took to Twitter to boast about the crowds of his supporters arriving in the capital as they chanted ‘f**k Antifa’ during clashes with counter-protesters and the police. 

Members of Antifa hold shields during a protest at Black Lives Matter Plaza on December 12, 2020 in Washington, DC, as thousands refused to accept the result of November’s general election

An injured Trump supporter is helped after a clash with counter-protesters on Tuesday in DC

An injured Trump supporter is helped after a clash with counter-protesters on Tuesday in DC

Trump supporters were gathered by the BLM Plaza to protest antifa in Washington D.C, United States on January 05, 2021

Trump supporters were gathered by the BLM Plaza to protest antifa in Washington D.C, United States on January 05, 2021

He wrote: ‘Washington is being inundated with people who don’t want to see an election victory stolen by emboldened Radical Left Democrats. Our Country has had enough, they won’t take it anymore! We hear you (and love you) from the Oval Office. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!’ 

Shortly afterwards, he warned Antifa to stay out of Washington. 

‘Antifa is a Terrorist Organization, stay out of Washington. Law enforcement is watching you very closely!’ The president tweeted.

It’s not clear what the effect of Trump’s memorandum to Pompeo will be as it only advises him to review certain criteria.

Trump writes: ‘The Secretary of State shall, in consultation with the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security, review information received from the Department of Justice and other authorities to assess whether to classify Antifa as a terrorist organization under section 1182(a)(3)(B)(vi) of title 8, United States Code.’

In September, FBI director Chris Wray told Congress that Antifa was an ideology rather than an organisation.

However, Trump’s letter notes that the Justice Department has already deemed ‘that actions by Antifa and similar groups meet the standard for domestic terrorism.’

As examples the president cites the actions of black-clad demonstrators who violently assaulted MAGA brigades at protests in Berkely, California, in February and August 2017.

He says that 50 criminals ‘contributed to an estimated $100,000 worth of property damage,’ adding that Antifa’s actions ‘resulted in 13 arrests on a range of charges, including assault with a deadly weapon and obstructing a police officer.’

Crowds of Trump supporters gathered in Washington DC on Tuesday night

Crowds of Trump supporters gathered in Washington DC on Tuesday night

Police set up cordons to try and separate Trump supporters from counter-protesters on Tuesday night

Police set up cordons to try and separate Trump supporters from counter-protesters on Tuesday night

He also lists the attack on conservative journalist Andy Ngo when he was covering protests in Portland, Oregon, in June, 2019. 

Ngo was hospitalised after being attacked by rioters who were counter-protesting the Proud Boys – a milita-style right-wing group which is today on the streets of DC to protest Biden’s election.  

Trump also notes last year’s riots by Antifa who have been widely accused of seizing on the Black Lives Matter movement to further their own divisive Anarcho-Communist agenda.

Later today the president is expected to speak to crowds at ‘Stop the Steal’ rally a few blocks away from the White House while lawmakers verify the results of November’s general election.

Many businesses in downtown Washington boarded up their windows, fearful that the protest could devolve into the unrest seen in May and June when dozens of businesses were vandalized.

District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser called in National Guard troops to help bolster the city’s police force.

A Trump supporter is seen recovering from being tear gassed as protests turned violent

A Trump supporter is seen recovering from being tear gassed as protests turned violent

Trump fans braved the cold on Tuesday night to show their support for the president

Trump fans braved the cold on Tuesday night to show their support for the president

Police and protesters scuffled on the streets of Washington DC on Tuesday night

Police and protesters scuffled on the streets of Washington DC on Tuesday night

She urged residents to stay away from downtown Washington and to avoid confrontations with anyone who is ‘looking for a fight.’

But, she warned, ‘we will not allow people to incite violence, intimidate our residents or cause destruction in our city.’

Election officials from both political parties, governors in key battleground states and Trump’s former attorney general, William Barr, have said there was no widespread fraud in the election.

Nearly all the legal challenges from Trump and his allies have been dismissed by judges, including two challenges rejected by the Supreme Court.


Yankees, Mets should consider if Corey Kluber is a worthwhile risk: Sherman

A name like that of Corey Kluber in free agency always excites. Why not? For five years from 2014-18 he was arguably the majors’ best pitcher, combining durability and excellence.

But notice the last superb season was 2018. Kluber has made eight starts since, just one last year before succumbing to a shoulder injury with the Rangers. He turns 35 in April.

Still, that name. It pushes the mind to think, “What if my team signs him and he rebounds to even close to form?” Just know it doesn’t happen a lot. Usually a mid-30s broken-toy pitcher stays that way despite all the encouraging words about the rehab.

Conversely, John Smoltz missed his age-33 season following Tommy John surgery and returned, first, as an elite closer and then again as a quality starter. Of course, he is John Smoltz, Hall of Famer. Bartolo Colon did not pitch at 37 in 2010 due to multiple arm maladies. He came back to have more productive years. He also was suspended 50 games in his age-39 season for failing a test for illegal performance enhancers.

There are other examples. Just they are rare and often come with extenuating circumstances such as the pitcher was historically great or hopped up on PEDs.

Still, Kluber is holding a mound session on Jan. 13 at Cressey Sports Performance in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., and at least the dozen teams that have expressed curiosity will send a scout. The Mets will be among those, The Post has learned. The Yankees would not divulge if they will scout Kluber’s session, but it would be a surprise if they didn’t. Plus, they might have more insight into this player currently than anyone.

Eric Cressey, who runs Cressey Sports Performance, was named the Yankees’ director of health and performance last offseason and is training Kluber through rehab this offseason. Yankees pitching coach Matt Blake worked at Cressey Sports before joining the Indians as director of pitching performance in 2016 and, thus, was with Kluber for his final four Cleveland seasons.

The case for both New York clubs — or any team — to try to sign Kluber is easy if he is healthy, considering his pedigree and that the righty likely will have to sign a low-base contract with performance bonuses for innings and/or starts, tying a lot of money to his health. So is he healthy?

In a text, Cressey wrote: “Corey is doing great. It’s been a really smooth rehab with no hiccups and he’s already been off the mound several times.”

Due to first a fractured arm and then an oblique strain, Kluber made just seven starts in 2019. Yet, the Indians picked up his $17.5 million option for 2020 and traded him to the Rangers — again, the power of the name and history outweighed the mid-30s broken toy. Kluber then made one start for Texas on July 26, leaving after one inning with a tear in his shoulder, and the Rangers did not pick up his $18 million 2021 option.

Both the Mets and Yankees could use a surer rotation add. But if you want a reminder of why Kluber entices, then know his 2014-18 (ages 28-32) looks a lot like Jacob deGrom’s last five seasons (ages 28-32). Both Stetson alums (isn’t it amazing both went to the same school too) won two Cy Youngs in that term with Kluber also finishing third twice and deGrom once. Kluber had an ERA plus of 151, deGrom 153. Kluber walked 5.2 percent of batters faced and whiffed 28.5, deGrom 6.1 and 30.3. The slash line vs. Kluber was .220/.266/.353 with a .618 OPS, vs. deGrom’s .219/.269/.339 and .608.

Corey Kluber MLB free agency
Corey Kluber is throwing in a showcase for MLB teams on Jan. 13.
Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Kluber then collapsed physically, so the Mets need the comparison to stop now. For deGrom is their rotation certainty. Marcus Stroman had a calf injury and opted out of last season. Noah Syndergaard missed 2020 following Tommy John surgery and is not due back before June, though he also is training with Cressey, who reported Syndergaard is doing great. Can David Peterson repeat a fine rookie season over a full schedule? Is Seth Lugo a major league starter? The same could be asked of Steven Matz.

The Mets are not in on Japanese ace Tomoyuki Sugano, but they are considering other free-agent starters such as Jake Odorizzi. And this is an area in which Steve Cohen’s bankroll could make a difference. The Mets could sign, say, Odorizzi and if they like what they see from Kluber, Cohen could write a bigger check than others. If it succeeds, really great. If not, Cohen could easily write it off as the kind of one-year, not-huge-money (for him) risk that the Wilpons would not take.

This offseason the Yanks are more in Wilpon mode too. Their current intentions are to stay under the $210 million luxury tax threshold. That leaves roughly $30 million-ish to spend. They have to know how much of that DJ LeMahieu will take up (or not take up) before redirecting elsewhere. If they stick to this policy, it complicates even a performance-heavy deal because the Yanks would have to budget as if Kluber will earn them to assure they stay under $210 million.

Yet, if Cressey and Blake and the Yanks’ internal information says Kluber is a good bet then they have to consider this. Because they have Gerrit Cole and then … Like Syndergaard, Luis Severino is due back around June after Tommy John surgery. How much rotation quality and how many innings could the Yanks expect from Deivi Garcia, Domingo German, Michael King, Jordan Montgomery, Clarke Schmidt, Nick Nelson and Miguel Yajure?

A solid Kluber would fit in ideally behind Cole. But is he solid? Or a famous name and broken toy?

Sports Canada

NHL: teams consider playing outside

At least four National Hockey League teams are currently exploring the possibility of playing their home games away from home.

They are the Pittsburgh Penguins, Los Angeles Kings, Anaheim Ducks and Boston Bruins, according to hockey expert Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet reported Thursday. The Kings would have been the first to consider the idea several months ago.

Currently, the start date of the 2020-2021 Bettman Circuit season remains undetermined. The league and the players’ union are trying to come to a compromise on the financial parameters of the return to the game. Some members of the Association are protesting in particular against an increased deferral of the payment of salaries scheduled for next year.

Entertainment UK

Shane Richie’s unusual kid’s names as he and wife consider adopting their sixth

I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! star Shane Richie has announced he wants another child once the show is finished.

Shane, 56, is considering adopting with his younger wife Christie Goddard, 41, because he isn’t sure if he can father another kid due to his age.

The EastEnders star already has two kids – Shane Roche Jr, 31, and Jake Roche, 28 – with his ex-wife Coleen Nolan, who were born in the early days of his showbiz career.

And he also shares three others with his current wife Christie, who all have very unusual names – Mackenzie Blue, 14, Lolita Bell, 12, and Romani-Skye Angel Shelley, who is nine.

The couple have never spoken publicly about why they named their son Mackenzie Blue.

I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here star Shane Richie has announced he wants another child once the show is finished

Mackenzie is originally a Scottish last name, which in Gaelic means “child of the wise leader” and “born of fire”.

Romani-Skye Angel Shelley was born on 27 April, 2011, but her name choice is another one never explained by the couple.

It appears they were inspired by the nomadic Romani people, who live mostly in Europe, with their name choice.

The pair welcomed Lolita Bell Shelley on July 27, 2008.

Lolita is also the name of Vladimir Nabokov’s famoud 1955 book about a professor who starts a sexual relationship with his teenage stepdaughter, which was widely criticised for its depictions of child sex abuse.

Shane his wife Christie Goddard and their kids at the Gala performance of Wind In The Willows at London Palladium on June 29, 2017

Shane’s son Shane Jr has been running his dad’s social accounts while he’s in the IAC camp

After Lolita’s birth, Christie spoke to People magazine about why they opted for their daughter’s name choice and why she thought it could spark controversy due to Shane’s reputation as a ladies man.

She said: “We both know the significance of naming her Lolita.

“I just thought it was a lovely name and didn’t think there was a big problem. With hindsight, there was always going to be a bit of backlash with Shane naming his daughter Lolita, because of his reputation for dating lots of women before he met me, but it’s not something we worry about.”

Shane told The Sun that he thinks there is still time for Christie to conceived a child naturally, even though they are considering adoption.

Shane and Christie share kids with very unusual names – Mackenzie Blue,14, Lolita Bell,12, and Romani-Skye Angel Shelley, 9

He said: “We always talk about it, myself and Christie, and because she is 15 years younger than me and she is only 41, so there is still time.

“We have been talking about having another baby and there is still time and she is always talking about wanting another kid (her own biological kid) and I know our daughters would love another brother or sister.

“But now we are talking about adopting and because we live in Surrey, the rules there are very different to when we lived in Bucks, which was a long time ago, but I am still up for it.”

Shane was married to Loose Women star Coleen from 1990 until 1999 and he married Christine 13 years ago.

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Sports UK

Arsenal ‘monitoring’ Sander Berge as they consider reigniting transfer interest

Arsenal are continuing to track Sheffield United’s Sander Berge as they weigh up a summer move.

The Norwegian was linked with the Gunners last term before he made the switch to Bramall Lane.

Mikel Arteta is keen to add another midfielder to his ranks having been credited with interest in the likes of Houseem Aouar and Jorginho.

But with the Blades languishing at the foot of the table Arsenal could make another move for Berge should they go down according to Norwegian newspaper  VG.

The 22-year-old moved to Sheffield for a then club-record £22m in January.

Arsenal may not be alone in pursuing his signature however with Tottenham, Liverpool and Manchester United all thought to be keen.

Sander Berge continues to be of interest to Arsenal

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Berge has been a regular under Chris Wilder since joining having made 25 appearances, scoring twice in that time.

And the Blades boss has hailed his central midfielder as the “complete” player and is aware of the interest in him.

He said: “Sander was a fantastic signing for us. We want him to grow with us, but we understand that the big clubs are interested when he performs so well.

“That means we, and Sander, are doing something right.

Mikel Arteta is looking for someone to partner Thomas Partey

“People judged Sander when we signed him. They expected everything to happen immediately. There were some harsh opinions about him.

“People thought he would not be a success in the Premier League, but he has turned it upside down. Sander has been our best player this season.

“I just have to say it: Sander has been unique. He is the one who has stood out for us.

“He is a complete midfielder. He can play as an 8 and as 6. He can play in different formations.” 

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Delhi The Buzz

Run goods trains in Punjab first, will then consider allowing passenger ones: Farm unions to Centre

Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, November 18

“First allow the goods trains to operate in Punjab, which will signal the lifting of the state’s economic blockade. Only then, will we consider allowing the passenger trains to operate in the state.”

This was the main decision taken by the 30 farmer unions that met here on Wednesday, to discuss the further course of action in the ongoing farmers’ agitation. After deliberating for over five hours, the unions said the Centre must show its good intent by allowing goods trains to operate.

The union leaders said they were under pressure from the industry as well as the state government to stop the agitation on the railway property (farmers are no longer on the tracks or railway platforms, but protesting on railway parking and other lands), as the Union Railway Ministry and the Railways Board has refused to revoke the suspension of trains. “We would like to tell the industrialists that we are fighting for a just cause, which is directly linked to the state’s economy. The Centre is responsible for keeping train services suspended… not us,” said Rajinder Singh Deepsinghwala of Krantikari Kisan Union, adding that the agitation would continue.

During the marathon meeting today, discussion was also held on the last week’s meeting with Central ministers in Delhi. It is learnt that all unions unanimously rejected the suggestion that the three Farm Acts would benefit farmers. They criticised the Centre for disallowing them the rally venue at Delhi for the agitation on November 26-27, and vowed to make the agitation a grand success.

Ruldu Singh Mansa, president of Punjab Kisan Union, who chaired the meeting today, said they also discussed the routes that the farmers will be taking to reach Delhi, as efforts will be made to stop their march to the capital. “All district committees will be meeting on November 21, to chalk out their plan,” he said


Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh expressed disappointment over the “adamant refusal” of the farmer unions to completely lift their rail blockade, saying it has brought the state virtually to a standstill for the past month and a half.

In a statement, he called the farmer unions’ decision “extremely unfortunate”, saying their blockade of passenger trains was obstructing the movement of goods trains as well.

He said he had expected them to back down from their “unyielding” approach in the interest of Punjab, particularly in view of the state government’s absolute support for their cause.

“They should realise things could not continue like this ad infinitum, and if rail transportation continued to remain suspended any longer, the state would plunge into an irreversible crisis,” he said.

He added that no government could afford such a situation.

Industry has already suffered losses to the tune of Rs 30,000 crore so far, he said.

Industries in Ludhiana and Jalandhar have borne Rs 22,000 crore in losses.  Over 13,500 containers are lying at Dhandari dry port, from where they could not be sent to other parts of the country.

In the agriculture sector, 60,000 gunny bags are stuck in Delhi and Rajpura, impacting the lifting of paddy from grain markets, the CM said.

He said the suspension of train services has also prevented the supply of 40 lakh tonnes of parboiled rice from Punjab to Bihar and eastern Uttar Pradesh for the public distribution system, causing the central government to pick up grain from Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. —PTI

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