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CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Jimmie Johnson believes NASCARs new championship format produced the correct champion and a Ryan Newman victory would have been tough to swallow for the sport.Johnson began the season as the six-time and defending champion, but he was eliminated from title contention in the revamped Chase for the Sprint Cup format. A 16-driver field was whittled down to four for Sundays finale, where Kevin Harvick beat Newman, Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano to claim his first title.I feel like Kevin winning was the right thing when you look at the winners and the dominant cars throughout the year, Johnson said Thursday.Harvick had to win the race to wrap up the title, and found himself in a late shootout with Newman for the victory. Newman, in his first season for Richard Childress Racing, advanced to the finale through consistency after a winless season.The Chase format this year was touted by NASCAR chairman Brian France as one that would put an emphasis on winning, and Harvick won three Chase races, including the final two. But, he nearly lost the title to Newman, who finished second in the finale. The highest-finishing driver Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway was guaranteed the title.Ryan had every right in the world to be the champion, the rules were laid out that way, said Johnson, who was eliminated after the second round, or the sixth of 10 races. But if (Newman) wins the championship, I think that would have been tough to swallow for the sport. Its not taking anything away from Childress or Ryan, they had an awesome year and collected a ton of points. Theres some danger for the sport with this format.Johnson said he discussed the new format with France at the start of the season. He believed, based on performance during the regular season, the finale should have been between Harvick, Team Penske drivers Logano and Brad Keselowski, and Jeff Gordon, his Hendrick Motorsports teammate. Those four drivers combined for 12 wins in the first 26 races, and eight wins in the 10 Chase races.But Gordon and Keselowski were both eliminated after the third round, and Gordon last week called on NASCAR to set a separate points system for the Chase drivers. Gordon felt it was unfair for the Chase drivers to be scored against the entire 43-car field, and they should only be scored against the Chase drivers.Still, drivers have praised the new elimination system, with Newman saying the intensity of the sport has gone through the roof, because of the Chase. The high stakes produced drama on and off the track, including a pair of brawls in in the final seven races.The system is fine. Its exciting. Every race is exciting, Hamlin said. Theres not been one boring race. This is the best thing thats happened to this sport in a really long time.But Johnson said attendance and television ratings are the true measure. Although attendance was improved at many tracks this season, TV ratings were flat. The 10-race Chase drew an average of 4.41 million viewers for ESPN/ABC, and a 2.7 rating. Last season drew an average of 4.5 million viewers and a 2.8 rating.We need to do something to drive the viewership up, said Johnson, who supports heat races capped by a final A main-style race slotted into a television window.Maybe we qualify on Saturday and thats televised, and then run some heat races and a feature on Sunday, in a four-hour time window, he said. It sticks to our roots, sticks with what weve always had and done, gives some natural pauses for the show for the social element at the track. I think that would be a pretty entertaining format. Salomon Clearance Uk .com) - Will Conant booted a 39-yard field goal as time expired and Air Force played spoiler with a 27-24 win over 21st- ranked Colorado State on Friday. Cheap Salomon Shoes Uk . And though his comeback night didnt quite go to script, Bryant couldnt help reflecting on the work necessary to get back on that court -- and all the months of steady labour ahead to reclaim his game. Bryant had nine points and eight rebounds in his season debut, but Amir Johnson scored a career-high 32 points in the trade-depleted Toronto Raptors 106-94 victory over Los Angeles on Sunday night. http://www.salomonsaleuk.com/. Manager Alex Ferguson says the injury was sustained while the player tried to hit a volley toward the end of training on Tuesday. Salomon Outlet Store Uk . A last-minute leveler ensured the two-time defending champion remained nine points ahead of Roma, which drew 0-0 at bitter rival Lazio in the capital derby. Salomon Shoes Sale Online . You can watch all the action on TSN and TSN GO beginning at 8:30pm et/5:30pm pt. Minnesota dropped the first two tests of this best-of-seven set at Chicagos United Center and was outscored by a combined 9-3 margin in those setbacks. However, the Wild righted themselves at home by taking Game 3 by a 4-0 count before knotting the series at two games apiece with Fridays 4-2 triumph at Xcel Energy Center.Norman, OK (SportsNetwork.com) - Isaiah Cousins had 20 points and seven rebounds in the 18th-ranked Oklahoma Sooners 90-68 rout of the Northwestern State Demons. Buddy Hield added 16 points, seven boards and two steals for the Sooners (2-1), who bounced back from a 65-63 loss at Creighton on Wednesday. Ryan Spangler, Jordan Woodard and Dinjiyl Walker each scored 13 points. Zeek Woodley ended with 26 points, eight rebounds and three steals for the Demons (2-2), who had a two-game winning streak snapped. Marvin Frazier had 11 points and seven boards. Northwestern State got within 16-15 after Woodley went 1-of-2 from the foul line with 10:50 left in the first half. But the Sooners responded with an 8-2 spurt that Hield capped with a layup for a 24-17 lead.dddddddddddd Holding a 28-24 edge, Oklahoma went on a 22-6 run to end the half. Woodard tallied seven points during the surge to help the Sooners take a 50-30 lead into the locker room. The Demons used a 10-0 run to get within 73-61 with 9:07 to play, but Walker and Frank Booker answered with 3-pointers to spark a 9-0 Oklahoma spurt. Game Notes Oklahoma leads the all-time series, 5-0 ... Northwestern State will visit Texas Tech on Tuesday ... Oklahoma will face UCLA on Wednesday in the first round of the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas. ' ' '

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