If what they say is true and everybody loves an underdog, 2016 will be remembered as one of the best years in the almanacs of sport.From the unheralded Danny Willett taking out the US Masters title to 5000 to 1 shot Leicester City winning the English Premier League, it has been a great year to be an outsider.Are the Cronulla Sharks also about to follow suit and write the next chapter in a growing collection of sporting fairy tales?Cronulla, for decades, have provided more punchlines than punch in the NRL but as they celebrate their 50th year they are circling a maiden rugby league premiership.Just two years ago, Cronulla claimed the wooden spoon after becoming embroiled in a supplements scandal that disrupted their season and threatened the clubs existence; how times have changed.When UBET tabled their first market for season 2016, the Sharks were quoted at a generous $17 to break the drought.They firmed into $11 ahead of the season opener but the initial odds appeared more than justified after two defeats in the first three rounds.Their slow start saw them slump to 10th on the NRL ladder, their premiership odds ease back out to $13 and left their long-suffering fans feeling as empty as their trophy cabinet.Fast-forward to round 20, and Cronulla are closing on their first minor premiership since 1999 with hope growing as fast as the odds are shortening that this could finally be their year. They are now $4.25 second-favourites with UBET.?Since their 22-12 loss to Manly in mid-March, they have gone on a 14-match unbeaten run and, as each round passes, interest in the Sharks has steadily increased from a nibble into a frenzy.?They are almost unbackable this Sunday to equal the fifth-best mark set by Souths, Manly and Melbourne with 15 straight victories when they take on the bottom-placed Newcastle.The Roosters team of 1975 hold the longest winning streak with 19 matches, but UBET rate the Sharks of 2016 as a genuine chance of breaking that record -- quoting $13 for them to reach 21 by the end of the regular season.And their draw looks favourable with winnable games in the following rounds until the week before the finals, when they will run into fellow premiership contenders Melbourne.?If Cronulla manage to clear that obstacle then the focus will shift to an inconceivable 24 straight wins through the finals; achieve that and nobody could deny them their first ever premiership triumph.ESPN columnist Brett Kimmorley is already a believer; hes predicted his former club will keep the run going, and rubbished the theory that they need to lose a game before the finals.Winning form is good form, Kimmorley said.They havent been at their best lately but theyve still found ways to win which is important in the finals. Cheap Custom Seahawks Jersey . The CFLs leading rusher kept adding to his gaudy numbers this season and scored the winning touchdown with just over two minutes to play. The New Westminster, B.C., native plowed three yards into the end zone for the last score of a heated, see-saw battle between the two teams with the best records in the CFL. Authentic Custom Seahawks Jersey . -- When the Florida Panthers fell behind by two goals in the first period to the top team in the NHL, it appeared they were on their way to yet another loss. http://www.customseahawksjersey.com/ . This should be celebrated because it will not always be this way. With the amount of money given to players by their clubs these days, it is a wonder that so many of those teams allow the sport to continue to take away many of their assets so they can play for a different team in the middle of their season. Cheap Seahawks Jerseys .875,000, avoiding arbitration. Clippards deal Monday means all eight Nationals players who filed for arbitration wound up settling before a hearing. Custom L.J. Collier Jersey . The Montreal Canadiens announced on Friday that the veteran forward will return to the teams line-up on Saturday night when the Habs visit the Nashville Predators. EUGENE, Ore. -- An embarrassing road loss to Baylor may prove to be a valuable lesson for Oregon.If the fourth-ranked Ducks want to meet their own lofty expectations, theyll have to earn it on the boards.Two days after losing by 17 points to the unranked Bears, Chris Boucher had 25 points and nine rebounds to lead Oregon to its 27th consecutive home victory, 76-54 over Valparaiso on Thursday night.Boucher was coming off a 12-point, two-rebound performance against Baylor.His activity allowed him to him to have the 25 points, Oregon coach Dana Altman said. He had no defensive rebounds the other night and we lost the rebounding battle by 11.Tonight we won it by 13, and that was the difference in the game.Jordan Bell added 15 points and seven rebounds for the Ducks (2-1), who took control early in the second half with an 11-4 run fueled by Bells eight points to open a 52-38 lead. Bell scored 12 points in the second half as Oregon shot 15 of 27 from the field.That was our goal, just to go inside, Bell said. Against Baylor we went 3 for 21 at the 3-point line, so we just wanted to go inside.Alec Peters led the Crusaders (3-1) with 24 points to become the schools second-leading career scorer. Tevonn Walker added 12 points.Valparaiso shot just 23.3 percent in the second half as Peters was its only starter to make more than half of his attempts. The Crusaders finished 4 of 21 from 3-point range.I think its pretty evident that we are not shooting the ball very well, Valparaiso coach Matt Lottich said, and to beat a team like Oregon youre going to have to hit shots from the outside.Backup freshman point guard Payton Pritchard had nine points and five assists for the Ducks, who led by as many as 25 points in the second half.Oregon had a 40-27 rebounding edge and blocked six shots.Altman said his teams size and rebounding ability should be what sets the Ducks apart.If youre not beating people on the boards, youre not taaking advantage of your athleticism, he said.dddddddddddd Our goal should be a plus-eight or -nine on those boards for the season, and if we do that, itll be really positive for our team.The Ducks played again without preseason All-America Dillon Brooks, who continues to recover from offseason foot surgery. Altman was noncommittal about the junior forwards availability for the Maui Jim Maui Invitational when Oregon opens play Monday against Georgetown.I dont know if hell play in Maui, Altman said, and if he does, it wont be very much.BIG PICTUREValparaiso: Coming off a 30-win season and deep run in the NIT, the Crusaders were held 28 points below their season average while shooting just 32.1 percent from the field against the Ducks.Oregon: The Ducks likely will slip in Mondays poll off their 66-49 loss at Baylor, but they may regain Brooks services while in Hawaii.POLL IMPLICATIONSDespite Thursday nights win, Oregons best-ever No. 4 ranking likely will take a hit after its 66-49 road loss to unranked Baylor on Tuesday.STAT OF THE NIGHTBoucher, who has scored in all 38 games hes played at Oregon, had 18 points by halftime and missed his career high by one.HIGHLIGHT REELThough not known for his ball-handling, the 6-foot-10 Boucher flashed some nifty moves when he picked off a cross-court pass, dodged a Crusader at mid-court, dipped inside another off the dribble and smoothly threw down a one-handed dunk in the first half to cap a 9-0 run.UP NEXTValparaiso plays Alabama on Monday in Las Vegas at the four-team MGM Grand Main Event. The Crusaders will face either BYU or Saint Louis on Wednesday before heading home.Oregon heads to Hawaii to play Georgetown on Monday in the first round of the Maui Jim Maui Invitational. The Ducks will face either No. 9 Wisconsin or Tennessee on Tuesday. ' ' '