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WHO'S Hot / WHO'S Not
November 12, 2007
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November 12, 2007

Who's Hot / Who's Not

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New Orleans
The Saints are alive—and scoring, averaging 30.5 points while winning four straight behind QB Drew Brees (above). The best part for the 4--4 team: an easy second-half schedule. "We've got a long ways to go," cautioned coach Sean Payton. That's also true of the Hornets, an SI playoff pick, but going 3--0 is a nice way to start.

Ilya Kovalchuk
The Russian-born Thrashers forward, in the middle of a five-year, $32 million contract, scored back-to-back hat tricks to tie for the NHL lead with 12 goals. Teammate Pascal Dupuis to Atlanta's Journal-Constitution: "The guy is dominating the sport."

Kellen Winslow
His shoulder's hurting and so's his hip, but the Browns' tight end snagged 11 balls for 125 yards to help beat Seattle. "I'm just proud of us, man," he said later, tearing up.

Alex Zanardi
The former CART champ, who lost his legs in a 2001 crash, not only competed in the NYC marathon's handcycle division—he came in fourth. Not shabby for a first-time marathoner who started training last month. Said Zanardi afterward, "Nothing hurts."


Oh, those Eagles. They were routed by Dallas, Donovan McNabb (above) can't get his groove on, and there's the unhappy matter of coach Andy Reid's prison-sentenced sons. "We'll be fine," Reid said of the 3--5 team. That may not be true of the 76ers, SI's pick for last in the East; a 1--2 start kept coach Mo Cheeks's hot seat from cooling.

Luol Deng
The Sudan-born Bulls forward turned down a five-year, $57.5 million extension, he keeps hearing those Kobe Bryant trade rumors, and he shot just 42.5% in three Bulls losses. Deng to the Chicago Tribune: "I just need to take more [practice] shots."

Rudi Johnson
Like Winslow, the Bengals' back had 11—in his case, yards rushing, on nine carries, in a loss to Buffalo. Coach Marvin Lewis, redefining fine: "Rudi played fine."

Alex Smith
The 49ers QB says he feels "100%" after a separated throwing shoulder sidelined him for four weeks. O.K., but 100% of what? Smith was the NFL's 34th ranked passer—yes, there are only 32 teams—after a three-pick game on Sunday.