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Lion Links: 4/14/16

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PRO is trying its hardest, the Pride will be on TV, the Olympic soccer draw is today, how MLS almost folded and more.

Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Thursday, everyone. Your intrepid Inspector Brad has been laid up all week, so no wine and cheese pairing this week as dairy and alcohol would only exacerbate my symptoms. Because I'm such a gamer and a lunch-pail writer, I'm still here for you, readers. This edition of Lion Links is my Flu Game. Instead, we're gonna go with Gatorade (lemon lime) cut with water and some chicken and dumplings. Comfort food and electrolytes to get through a tough loss last week and to give hope to get wins over New England and the Portland Thorns.

Now, on to the news!

PRO wants you to know it's trying really, really hard to do better

In what couldn't be described as better timing, Vice Sports put out a story yesterday about how PRO is meeting more frequently among themselves to get more consistency across their disciplinary decisions in matches. The primary example used was the March 6 match between Chicago Fire and NYCFC. In the 11th minute, Gilberto was taken down inside the NYCFC box and referee Armando Villarreal didn't award Chicago a penalty. NYCFC would go on to win, 4-3. Later in the day, PRO also decided that Philadelphia Union's free kick goal to decide Friday's 2-1 match shouldn't have counted, a decision we here at The Mane Land covered as well.

Alex Morgan and Tom Sermanni to Feature on WFTV

Tune in to WFTV Sunday at 12:30 p.m. ET ahead of the Pride's first NWSL match to watch an interview between Pride coach Tom Sermanni and Greg Warmoth. The duo will discuss topics ranging from what it's like coaching an expansion team, the fan atmosphere in Orlando, and the pressing subject of pay equality in women's professional sports. The show will also feature Pride and USWNT star Alex Morgan talking to Christian Bruey.

Rio 2016 Draw to Take Place Today

If you're reading this at 7:30 a.m. ET, when it gets published, you only have another hour and a half to wait for the 9 a.m. draw to take place to see who the USWNT will face in Brazil for this year's Summer Olympics. (The USMNT didn't qualify.) FIFA rules reduce the possible opponents in the group stage down to France, Sweden, China, New Zealand, Colombia, South Africa, or Zimbabwe. The U.S. cannot draw Canada and Germany can't draw a European team, so one of its opponents is defaulted to Australia. The potential match-ups do present the possibility for the USWNT to play South Africa or Zimbabwe for the first time in team history.

MLS Nearly Folded in 2001

Over at ESPN FC (I have a hunch they don't actually have their own club), FC Dallas President Dan Hunt is chronicling how, in 2001, league owners had all agreed to fold the league. This may not come as much of a surprise to many of us knowing how desperate times were early in the league's history with the league contractions with the Tampa Bay Mutiny and Miami Fusion. Hunt goes on to say how by 2026, MLS, plans on being one of the premier leagues in the world and how strategic expansion will help make this a reality.

Free Kicks

Today's birthdays include Pete Rose, who turns 75, Hall of Fame pitcher Greg Maddux turns 50, Anthony Michael Hall is 48, WWE's Lita turns 41, as does UFC legend Anderson "The Spider" Silva, another pair of twins are Buffy's Sarah Michelle Gellar and Mac from "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia," Rob McElhenney, who both turn 39, and finally, scream queen Abigail Breslin turns 20...Abby Wambach has changed her plea to guilty in her DUI case and will enter a diversion program...Noted AC Milan fan and Kaká admirer Kobe Bryant played his final professional basketball game yesterday...and finally, did a pair of Adidas prove time travel?

That's it for today!

Play us out, Marcelo!