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RIO DE JANEIRO -- Rodrigo Perrone, wearing a blue water polo cap, deftly made his way through the packed stands at the Maria Lenk Aquatics Centre. New York Knicks Hoodie . The 8-year-old Perrone then settled into his fathers lap to watch his uncle and Brazil take on world champion Serbia on Wednesday.I love soccer, the bubbly little boy said through a translator, and its like soccer in the water.Sure enough.Rodrigo is still on the fence -- I will play one day and the next day I will not, he said matter-of-factly -- but Brazils mens and womens water polo teams are hoping the excitement of the Olympics will help them grow the sport in their soccer-crazy country.Winning helps, of course, and Brazils mens team has been the tournaments most pleasant surprise so far. Playing in front of another big crowd -- with green-and-yellow-clad fans waving flags, singing and cheering right to the final horn -- the home country posted an impressive 6-5 victory over the gold-medal favorites. It leads Group B with a perfect 3-0 record.I think all the work we did for this Olympic Games already change a little bit the water polo in Brazil, said driver Gustavo Guimaraes, who connected on a tiebreaking penalty shot with 46 seconds left. The media, the person like `Oh, whats the water polo? A lot of people doesnt know whats this sport, and its an expensive sport.But the most important thing is that if you are able to do always better and do a good example inside the water, its going to change this, and I hope water polo in Brazil becomes like volleyball, soccer, something like this.Brazils players celebrated the victory by waving their caps and applauding to the roaring crowd from the center of the pool.We had to do this. The crowd was amazing, so we have to go there and say thank you for everybody, smiling center back Felipe da Costa E Silva said.Brazil qualified for the Olympics as the host country. Its the first Olympic appearance for the mens team since 1984, and the debut for the womens squad -- underlining water polos status on the sporting landscape in Brazil.While Olympic success is new for Brazil, its more of the same for its coach, Ratko Rudic, who has guided three different countries to a total of four gold medals. It also has the talented Felipe Perrone and big Josip Vrlic, who combined for three goals against Serbia, but its clear the countrys success begins with its veteran coach.Ratko is the best coach in the world, Guimaraes said. He won everything.U.S. captain Tony Azevedo, a Rio native who plays professionally for Sesi in Sao Paulo, also is hoping Brazils success leads to more water polo players in the country.Swimmings a huge sport here. So is water polo, Azevedo said, and now finally they have a team that they can cheer for. They have a team thats good. They have one of the best players in the world with Felipe Perrone. Its exciting, and I think Brazilians, and youll see, its not just water polo, its all sports out there, especially Brazilian sports, but water polo is finally getting its name out there in the country and I love that.Before Brazils win over Serbia, the United States beat France 6-3 for its first victory of the tournament. Josh Samuels scored three times and McQuin Baron made 11 saves.Also Wednesday, Australia edged Japan 8-6, Greece and Hungary played to an 8-8 draw and undefeated Italy earned a 6-5 win against Montenegro. In the final match of the day, Spain beat Croatia 9-4.---Jay Cohen can be reached at Patrick Ewing Jersey . No. 13-seeded John Isner and No. 21 Philipp Kohlschreiber were among six players who dropped out of the tournament on Tuesday, joining No. 12 seed Tommy Haas and two other players who withdrew on Monday. New York Knicks T-shirts .Y. - Free agent outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury, fresh off winning the World Series with Boston, reached agreement with the rival New York Yankees on a seven-year contract worth about $153 million, a person familiar with the negotiations said Tuesday night. . -- There were so many positives from the Orlando Magics first victory of the season that it was hard for coach Jacque Vaughn to stop praising his players. It would be understandable if Abner Mares had at least a hint of doubt in his mind.Although Mares has won world titles in three weight divisions -- bantamweight, junior featherweight and featherweight -- and, for years, hes been one of boxings best smaller-weight fighters, its been a rough road for him recently.In his first featherweight title defense in 2013, Mares stunningly got knocked out in the first round by Jhonny Gonzalez in an upset. An 11-month layoff followed, and although Mares won his next three bouts in a row, none came against a top opponent -- and he had some lethargic performances.When he finally stepped back into the ring with a top foe, then-undefeated Leo Santa Cruz for a vacant featherweight title in August 2015, Mares lost again, albeit in a competitive and ferocious fight-of-the-year-contender.Mares has not fought since that loss because of fight postponements, and he now finds himself at another moment of truth -- a shot at secondary featherweight titlist Jesus Cuellar on Saturday night (Showtime, 10 ET) at the Galen Center on the campus of Southern California in Los Angeles, where Mares will enjoy hometown crowd support.People said I could have taken a tune-up fight (after the loss to Santa Cruz), but theres no point to that, Mares said at the final news conference Thursday. Jesus Cuellar is one of the hardest punchers in the weight class. Of course, Im aware of his power, but Im not scared. This is a contact sport. I can punch back.Im looking forward to this test. Every single fight is a test for me, he continued. Im going to make you guys believe. You will see a tremendous fighter in the ring on Saturday night.The fight headlines a strong doubleheader, which also includes junior middleweight titlist Jermall Charlo (24-0, 18 KOs), 26, of Houston, making his third defense against mandatory challenger Julian J Rock Williams (22-0-1, 14 KOs), 26, of Philadelphia, in a 50-50 fight.Mares (29-2-1, 15 KOs), who has made multiple trainer changes in his career, will go into this bout with former Cuellar trainer Robert Garcia -- long considered one of boxings best cornermen -- at his side for the first time.Bringing in Robert Garcia has been a great thing for me, Mares said. Hes brought a lot of experience and hes one of the best coaches out there. I cant wait to show the fans what Ive learned from Robert.On the one hand, Mares 15-month layoff could be a problem because of rust and the potential for a slow start against a heavy hitter in Cuellar (28-1, 21 KOs), 29, of Argentina, who will be making the third defense of his belt and fighting for the first time in a year.But there is also the fact that the layoff gave him ample time to adjust day in and day out in the gym to the lessons Garcia had for him. Mares, 31, views the layoff as a positive.Theres always a reason behind something bad that happens. In this case, me not being able to fight twice (due to postponements), it just gave me the opportunity to get to know Robert even better, Mares said. Ive had a whole year leading up to this fight. You will see a difference in me. Im very eager and excited to fight.Coach Robert Garcia brings the discipline and the demanding voice of a trainer, Mares continued. We have to do things his way and I like that. Its bringing the best out of me. Im really excited for this fight.Garcia has trained several top fighters, and he feels like Mares discipline and coachability is second to none.I think basically what Abner needed was just a new voice, Garcia said. He had been working hard and training in a nice gym that he liked. But he was calling his own shots. I think he was getting a little too comfortable. I just think he needed a new voice.Hes never questioned one thing Ive asked of him. Hes done everything Ive asked, Garcia continued. Abner is hungry now. Mark Jackson Knicks Jersey. . When he introduced himself to me, he might have lost some of that. He wasnt listening to trainers instructions. But the moment he came to me, hes been doing everything hes supposed to. Hes old enough to know that hes not a kid anymore.The fight against Cuellar, whos now trained by Hall of Famer Freddie Roach, makes this bout a showdown between two of the best trainers in the business.The fight was initially scheduled to take place June 25 on the Keith Thurman-Shawn Porter undercard at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, but it was called off because Mares, who had successful surgery to repair a detached retina in his left eye in 2008, failed his prefight eye exam. The New York State Athletic Commission would not license him because his uncorrected vision did not meet the states minimum standard.Mares said his eye is fine, but he needs to wear glasses in his everyday life.Different rules for different states, he said. [The eye issue was from] something that happened in 2008. I have been fighting since. Ive been cleared in every state Ive fought in, other than New York. I fight in California, I fight in Texas, I fight in Vegas. I fight in Philly, too. I think there was a red flag for (New York) because, obviously, I had surgery done in 2008 and they just didnt want to take the risk. My surgery is done. Im good and like any other fighter I have the same risk.Mares later passed the California State Athletic Commission eye exam and the fight with Cuellar was rescheduled.It was difficult, Mares said of dealing with what happened in New York. Its not the first time something like this has happened to me -- not in the sense of me being injured or anything but a fight being cancelled. But I am a human being, I have feelings, obviously, and I just felt sad at the moment because I love to fight.I was supposed to fight in March. That got postponed because of an injury and then it got postponed for June and then that June fight got postponed so here we are. You know my family kept me strong and those long talks with my advisor [Al Haymon] kept me going and again, here we are and still healthy, and we will continue to give you guys good fights.The bout with Cuellar figures to produce fireworks given their styles.Cuellar is a very strong fighter both physically and mentally, Garcia said. Hes the hardest hitter in the featherweight division. Hes dangerous and dedicated.Cuellar is aware of Mares resume and knows he is the most significant opponent of his career.This is definitely the biggest fight of my pro career, Cuellar said. This is historic and I definitely think that it will be a memorable fight for fans. Because of who Im fighting and what were fighting for, it makes it crucial that I get the victory. Im a warrior. My style is to be aggressive and fight with my heart. If I have to let the warrior out, I am ready. But if I have to box, I am ready for that, too.Mares is a great fighter and has been a great champion. But I dont think hes ever faced anyone with my power or ability. Its not going to be an easy fight for either of us, but Im very confident that I will win and probably knock him out.Mares wasnt about to make a prediction. He is just happy to be getting back in the ring for another chance to win a title after a trying 15 months.Im really excited about this fight. Its been a long year of waiting, Mares said. Its been a process. Having this fight so close to happening makes me really happy.I dont pay attention to the fact that Im a three-division world champion. Thats in my past and its my history. Its always going to be part of me, but Im looking for that fourth world title. Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys China Cheap Jerseys From China Cheap NFL Jerseys Authentic Wholesale Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys China NFL Cheap Jerseys ' ' '