The Miami Heat have a tight grip on their second round playoff series against the Brooklyn Nets. The Heat have a pair of double-digit victories, and the Nets have yet to break 90 points.After Game 1, much was made of the Nets attempting a season-low 12 shots in the restricted area (making half). Brooklyn did a better job getting into the paint in Game 2, but once it got there, the Heat were waiting. The Heat defended 20 of the Nets’ 28 shots at the basket Thursday night, according to NBA.com’s SportVU Player Tracking Box Score. Of the shots the Heat contested, the Nets made just four (The SportVU system defines shots defended at the rim as ones when the defender was within 5 feet of both the rim and the shooter).The Heat have tightened their defense in the playoffs. During the regular season, they ranked 10th and 13th, respectively, in opponent shot attempts in the restricted area and opponent field-goal percentage in the restricted area. And they were frequently accused of saving energy for the playoffs. Although we can’t directly measure energy expended, the results would seem to indicate that the Heat have shifted into their playoff gear.The Heat’s defenders are connected by taut strings — one player moves and pulls another into a different position. To make the system work, a team needs mobile big men who can blitz a pick-and-roll and challenge a shot at the rim, often on the same possession. It’s become increasingly obvious over the past three seasons that Chris Bosh has grown into an ideal cog for this system.Bosh isn’t considered a devastating rim defender; he ranked just 28th in the league in blocks per game this season, behind suspect defenders such as Terrence Jones, Al Jefferson and DeMarcus Cousins. But blocks only capture a small portion of rim defense. On Thursday night against the Nets, Bosh defended nine shots at the rim, of which the Nets made just one. In these playoffs, Bosh has been defending an average 7.5 opponent shots per game at the rim, allowing opponents to shoot just 42.4 percent on those shots. Of players who have defended at least 40 opponent shots at the rim in these playoffs, only Tim Duncan, Roy Hibbert and David West have allowed a lower field-goal percentage.Bosh may not block a ton of shots, but he gets in the way. In the Heat’s system, that’s enough to give them one of the most destructive defenses in the league.
“Playoff Implications” is a phrase you usually don’t hear until the final weeks of the NFL regular season, but almost every regular season game has playoff implications. In the early going, however, it can be difficult to figure out just what those implications are, and how much is riding on each game.Most other major sports leagues play a greater number of regular season games, and thus the playoff picture in those sports evolves in a more incremental fashion. The pace can seem glacial at times for MLB, and inevitable and foregone when it comes to the NBA. But with just 16 regular season games, the NFL’s playoff landscape can change dramatically over the course of a single Sunday afternoon. And these tectonic shifts take place throughout the season, not just in those final weeks of December.With a week or two left in the season, the “eye test” usually suffices for judging which games will shape the playoff picture. But in mid-October there are far too many possibilities for the unassisted human mind to make sense of. We can only speak in general terms. For example, we know the playoff chances for the New Orleans Saints will improve with a victory this Sunday over the Detroit Lions. But by how much? And how far would they drop with a loss? Expanding our focus, what other teams have a vested interest in the outcome of this game? One would expect Carolina’s playoff chances to improve with a Saints loss, given that the Saints are their division rival. But once again, by how much?To answer these questions, we’ve created a weekly feature that measures the playoff implications of each game. To do this, you need to be able to simulate the remainder of the season multiple times and analyze the results. And in order to simulate the season, you need a way to rank all 32 teams, and use that ranking to create outcome probabilities for future games. We’ve been doing just that with FiveThirtyEight’s Elo rankings. But the Elo ratings, simple and beautiful, aren’t the only word on NFL rankings. For this feature we’re going to turn to the wisdom of the crowd instead, and use a ranking system one of the authors developed based on betting markets. In stock market terms, think of it as technical analysis in lieu of fundamental analysis.We’ll get into the methodology in a moment but first the results. Think of each interactive table below as a playoff implications “cheat sheet” for this week’s upcoming games.1The table is initially sorted by game importance, where we define importance by its cumulative impact on the playoff picture. Where you see blank cells on the table corresponds to games and teams in which there was not a statistically significant difference in playoff odds. (If you hover over a colored square, you’ll see details for that game.)UPDATE (Oct. 17, 12:30 p.m.): The interactive tables above have been updated to include Thursday night’s game, which now shows no playoff implications because its result is included in the playoff chances (the text of the article has not been updated).Reading the table across tells you which teams are affected by any particular game.2Notice that we don’t restrict ourselves to just the two teams competing in each game. As we alluded to above, teams benefit when they win games, but they also benefit when division rivals (and other competitors for playoff seeding) lose games. The Panthers, for example, would see their playoff chances rise by 11 percent with a Saints loss to the Lions. Reading the table down tells you which games matter most to any given team. For example, if you’re a Texans fan, what games should you care about this week, how much should you care about them, and who do you want to win? The column headers are sortable, so clicking on the “HOU” column tells you to care about HOU @ PIT, ATL @ BAL, CIN @ IND, NYJ @ NE, CLE @ JAC, and KC @ SD — in that order. And you want the Texans, Falcons, Bengals, Jets, Jaguars and Chiefs to win.My rankings start from the assumption that the NFL gambling market is efficient, and then attempts to determine how that efficient market ranks each of the 32 NFL teams. Unfortunately, Vegas doesn’t actually share its rankings with the general public, but with a little reverse-engineering, we can arrive at a pretty good guess at what they are. We start with the point spread. For Thursday night’s game, the New England Patriots are a 9.5-point favorite at home against the New York Jets. Since home field advantage is worth about 2.5 points, the market thinks the Patriots are 7 points better than the Jets when playing on a neutral field.Armed with this interpretation, we then take the point spreads from each game and for multiple weeks and run a simple linear regression to arrive at a consensus ranking. The process is akin to drawing a map of the United States but nobody tells you a city’s location. Instead, they only tell you how far away each city is from another city (e.g. Los Angeles is 1,700 miles away from Chicago, Chicago is 165 miles from Indianapolis, and so on). To further complicate matters, our map “moves” over time, making earlier “distance” measurements less reliable. For example, the Steelers opened the season as a 6-point favorite at home against the Browns. If the market were to set that point spread today, Pittsburgh would most likely drop to just a 2.5-point favorite, as the Steelers have fallen short of preseason expectations, and the Browns have exceeded them. So, the ranking methodology gives more weight to recent point spread data in an attempt to get the most up-to-date market evaluation of each team.Now that we have a ranking system that assigns a probability to each future regular season game outcome, the next step is to simulate the season multiple times (50,000 times to be exact). After simulating win/loss records, we apply the NFL playoff seeding rules (plus tiebreakers) and summarize the results. There are already several sites that do these types of simulations for the purpose of producing team playoff odds (including FiveThirtyEight). For this feature, we’re going to go a bit deeper than that.Instead of focusing on each team’s overall playoff odds, let’s instead focus on each game. We’ll use the New Orleans-Detroit game as an example. Of the 50,000 simulation runs, there were precisely 30,180 (or about 60 percent) that resulted in a Lions victory, and 19,820 that resulted in a Saints victory. Let’s now focus on those two samples in isolation. Of the 30,180 simulations in which the Saints lost, they made the playoffs 8,273 times, or 27 percent. Of the 19,820 simulations in which the Saints won, they made the playoffs 9,172 times, or 46 percent. Put simply, the Saints playoff odds could swing by a not-insignificant 19 percent as a result of their game against the Lions. (The games with the most cumulative influence on the overall playoff picture (“leverage”) are listed at left).We can repeat this calculation for every game and every team. The result: A measure of how much every game matters to every team.
cwick (Chadwick Matlin, senior editor): The NFL finally has its own version of the Starr Report. After a months-long investigation and hundreds of pages, a law firm hired by the NFL has found that the Patriots most likely did tamper with their footballs, and that Tom Brady was likely “generally aware of the inappropriate activities.” The report itself is sensational, full of amazing details about the bathroom habits of low-level assistants, furtive trash talk about Tom Brady, and a statistical appendix that seems designed for FiveThirtyEight to dissect. Let’s all assemble and talk about it! What stuck out most?andrewflowers (Andrew Flowers, quantitative editor): The report — especially the stat-sy appendix — went to great lengths to show that the difference in pressure between the Pats’ and Colts’ footballs was not due to chance.benm (Benjamin Morris, sportswriter): I would say that the report hammers home the stats and science sides of this extremely well so as to head off any skepticism on those fronts, but they’re relatively easy cases to make. You don’t need a stats degree to look at that table and see that something is amiss.The salacious parts to me are the surrounding facts: Who was responsible, how long has this been going on, what did Tom Brady know and when did he know it, etc? It has a lot more to say on those subjects than I would have guessed.neil_paine (Neil Paine, senior sportswriter): Yeah @benm – I was surprised they had the texts, which referred specifically to Brady being on the guy’s case about ball pressure.benm: And they present pretty good evidence that this was a deliberate rules violation for the purposes of gaining an advantage for Tom Brady and the Patriots organization, AND has likely been going on for some time.benc (Ben Casselman, chief economics writer): I am an unapologetic Pats fan, and would name my firstborn Brady if my wife would allow it. But one question I had was how clear it is that Brady wanted the balls UNDER 12.5 psi vs. as close to the minimum as possible. He seems to have complained about the balls in the Jets game, but those seem to have been inflated well over 12.5.neil_paine: @benc – Right, they did complain the balls were at 16 one game.benm: Agreed the evidence about Brady (at least from 30 minutes of dissecting it) seems a little more thin than evidence against McNally and Jastremski. [Jim McNally is the Officials Locker Room attendant for the Patriots, and John Jastremski is an equipment assistant for the team.]neil_paine: Another interesting note is that it was the first time in 19 years Walt Anderson [the head NFL referee for the game] couldn’t account for the balls. In the other games this was happening, who was the referee and what did he notice?benc: That feels to me a bit like the kind of thing you notice only after the fact though. Like, how sure are we Anderson would have noticed if he couldn’t find the balls on other occasions where no one raised questions?cwick: Left unaddressed is whether deflated balls had been helping the Patriots win — do we have any better sense for that now than we did before? Because before we thought this was isolated to just the Colts game, which they won handily. But now it seems like this was about Tom Brady’s preferences in more than just that game.benm: I think the much-maligned study by Warren Sharp about the Patriots having a low fumble rate should be taken more seriously, for sure. I mean, though it had flaws, at a very minimum that author correctly identified that the Patriots fumble rate has been absurdly small. I did my own calculations using binomial and Poisson models and found the same.benc: NOW this is a 538 chat!benm: But the fun part is when you get all Bayesian about it. As I said at the time, the existence of the Patriots’ extremely low fumble rate, as a Bayesian matter, makes it much more likely that the Patriots were intentionally cheating – even though the link between fumble rates and inflation levels is only speculative. That’s the beauty of Bayesianism. But it gets better: Now that it seems likely that the Patriots were violating the rules to gain an advantage, the fact that they also had an extremely low fumble rate makes it more likely that the relationship between inflation levels and fumbling is real – and more likely that the Patriots have materially benefited from their cheating.cwick: @benm “That’s the beauty of…” is a phrase that’s been written so many times. That may be the first time the sentence ended with “Bayesianism.”neil_paine: Agreed that some of those outlier Patriots stats deserve a second look – although it bears noting that the report specifically exonerates [head coach Bill] Belichick, so this doesn’t appear to be part of a grander conspiracy involving the entire team. (Certainly the team beyond Brady could benefit, though.)One question regarding the fumbling is whether non-QB players coming to the Patriots from other teams noticed a change in ball feel.benm: Agreed, the report seems to be focused primarily on these two Pats personnel, with a looser link to Brady.neil_paine: If I recall correctly, the WOWY (with or without you) evidence with players going to/from New England wasn’t very convincing after removing special teams plays.benm: But what do you do in a situation where the team benefits from one person in the organization bending rules? USC has lost national championships for less.neil_paine: Right, was going to say, that’s the kind of moral question that often haunts college teams forced to vacate wins/titles. (And unrelated players are faced with future bowl bans.)benm: And again, just to be clear. I’m not saying the Pats did gain some huge advantage from this. But the odds of that have gone up substantially.cwick: ok — can we talk about the data appendix for a minute, because I was floored by the detail.benm: Indeed, the science-y stuff “floored” me more than the stats.cwick: To your eyes, is this the most high-profile statistical model of the year? and were you impressed by it?andrewflowers: What I love about this report is the various extents the researchers went to make their analysis iron-clad: the natural experiment of comparing the Colts (control group) and Pats’ footballs; the statistical inference (p-values!) in examining the differences in the pressure changes; and the hard-science engineering to test the environmental effects. I mean, just look at this photo…andrewflowers: Someone also apparently “simulated” whether it’s possible to deflate 13 footballs in under 1 minute and 40 seconds. Apparently it is.benm: Honestly, it’s probably overkill. But that is, in a sense, a product of the incredibly strong statistical case. So I kind of give them credit for going so far to address alternate possibilities. A model a lot of stats people could probably learn from. I mean, once it’s clear that this didn’t happen by chance, the discussion moves to: So what explains it.benc: What do we think the odds are these guys were getting paid by the hour?andrewflowers: Very high.benm: Law firm: Yes — paid by the hour.benc: Because this has a definite, “Hey, is there another test we could run?” element to this.benm: And you think FiveThirtyEight is nerdy.andrewflowers: Honestly, today’s report is the best thing for the “Ideal Gas Law” since Bill Nye the Science Guy aired.cwick: Final question: What stat analysis does this report make you want to run out and do?andrewflowers: @benm’s point about the relationship between fumble rates and ball pressure.benc: Chart of “humor of references to Tom Brady’s balls” over time.benm: There’s definitely more to be done on the Patriots fumbling to isolate for the fact that they were the most consistently winning team, the types of plays they ran, their personnel, how that period fits in historical context (have other dominant teams had similarly bizarre quirks), etc.neil_paine: And perhaps another look at Brady from 2007 onward in general. That season was very much out of step with his previous performance. And what followed was very different as well. Do other QBs suddenly get that much better, at that age?benm: WOWD: With or Without Deflation.neil_paine: Lolbenm: Even if org isn’t culpable, it’s a pretty massive shift in the conversation about Pats. Suddenly we’re faced with the possibility of having to discount some amazing sports accomplishment. Again.neil_paine: “Behind every great fortune is a great crime.” This afternoon the NFL released the results of an investigation into whether or not the New England Patriots intentionally deflated footballs below league standards. The report was so sensational that we had to gather some of our best sports minds to talk about it. Here’s an edited transcript of our Slack conversation.
Byron Scott, the former Los Angeles Lakers guard who coached a depleted Cleveland team, was fired by the Cavaliers Thursday morning.Playing mostly without all-star guard Kyrie Irving, the Cavs lost 16 of their final 18 games to finish at 24-58, the third-worst record in the NBA. The team blew several large leads, including a 27-point home lead against the Miami Heat in the final weeks of the season.Still, Scott’s tenure with the Cavs has been marred first by LeBron James’ exit to Miami just after he accepted the job, an inferior roster, and injury to key players.“I have tremendous respect for Byron professionally and a great deal of admiration for him personally,” Cavaliers general manager Chris Grant said. “At the same time, it is critical for where we are as a team to ensure that we capitalize on every opportunity for development and success and we have fallen short of that on the court. I believe we needed to make this change in order to get to a better position to achieve our goals.”The Cavs ranked 26th in defensive efficiency in each of the last two seasons and 29th in Scott’s first year in 2010-11.During training camp the Cavs picked up the option in Scott’s contract for next season, which was valued at more than $4 million. He had a record of 64-166 in three seasons. His overall record as coach is 416-521 with the New Jersey Nets, who he took twice led to the NBA Finals, New Orleans Hornets and Cavaliers.
The Ohio State football team held an offense-versus-defense jersey scrimmage on Saturday following its annual kick scrimmage to give coaches another look at which players will start the season in place of the players who were suspended. The focus is on quarterback and running back, with seniors Terrelle Pryor and Dan Herron missing the first five games for selling memorabilia and receiving improper benefits in 2009. The offense won the jersey scrimmage, 56-45, behind touchdown passes from senior quarterback Joe Bauserman and redshirt freshman quarterback Taylor Graham. The highlight of the day came from freshman quarterback Braxton Miller, who spun out of a sack and ran 14 yards up the middle before diving into the end zone for a touchdown. Each quarterback, including redshirt sophomore Kenny Guiton, got reps with the first-team offense, and each could have the opportunity of starting for the Buckeyes during Pryor’s suspension. “I think they’re getting it,” senior linebacker Andrew Sweat said. “I think Joe is obviously better, and Kenny. They’ve obviously been in the system longer, but I think Braxton and Taylor are both doing a great job as well.” Miller, a highly touted recruit from Huber Heights, Ohio, enrolled at OSU early in order to get experience this spring before his freshman season, and has impressed his teammates at practice. “I think Braxton does a lot of things great, but obviously his mobile ability like Terrelle,” Sweat said. “He’s throwing a lot better than I expected. I think he’s throwing the ball well, and he’s understanding the concepts and he’s doing a good job.” During the scrimmage, Pryor was on the field helping Miller during every one of his plays, and senior offensive lineman J.B. Shugarts said all the veterans have been helping Miller get used to college football. “Everyone’s really helping Braxton a lot,” Shugarts said. “He’s really poised out there, especially someone straight out of high school. He’s not missing a beat at all.” Although Herron will miss the first five games, Shugarts said the Buckeyes should not have trouble getting production out of the running back position. “We’ve got a stable of backs. We’ve got some horses,” Shugarts said. “We can really go out there and move the ball.” Herron saw little work during Saturday’s scrimmage, but sophomore Jaamal Berry and redshirt freshman Rod Smith both had impressive days running the ball. Herron, however, said each running back has the chance to have a breakout season. “To be honest, all of them are doing great,” Herron said. “There’s not just one guy I can really point out because, I mean, they all have been doing an excellent job.” Junior Jordan Hall and sophomore Carlos Hyde also are in the mix for the Buckeyes at running back this season. The 6-foot-3 Smith has become one of the favorites to replace Herron during the suspension following impressive practices prior to the Sugar Bowl. Herron said Smith has been working hard and has all the tools to be successful. “He’s a big guy that can move pretty good. Whenever you can get a big guy moving the way he moves and just being flexible and learning the playbook as well as he can, that’s always a plus,” Herron said. Shugarts said Pryor is enjoying being a coach for the quarterbacks, and Herron said he will look to help out the running backs. “Any player, if you truly love the game, you love coaching people, and you love seeing people you coached progress on the field,” Shugarts said. “It just makes you feel better about the whole situation.” The Buckeyes also will be missing coach Jim Tressel, who was suspended for the first five games of the season for not reporting the NCAA infractions of Pryor, Herron and three other players. OSU will continue spring practice and will hold its spring game on April 23 at Ohio Stadium.
Oakland Raiders’ starting quarterback Jason Campbell broke his collarbone during the team’s 24-17 win against the Cleveland Browns Sunday. With only Kyle Boller and former Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor, who was selected by the Raiders in the NFL’s supplemental draft on Aug. 22, on their roster, Oakland completed a Tuesday trade that brought former Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer to the team. Pryor, Oakland’s No. 3 quarterback, may have a chance to lead the Raiders offense as a result of Campbell’s injury, but not this season. After being suspended for first five games of the Buckeyes’ 2011 season, Pryor departed OSU on June 7 to pursue a professional career, and was selected by Oakland in the third round of supplemental draft. Pryor was suspended from games and practices through Week 5 of the NFL season by commissioner Roger Goodell, and was not on the Raiders’ active roster for Sunday’s game against the Browns. Though Pryor will join the Raiders’ active roster this week for Oakland’s game against Kansas City, Vittorio Tafur, a Raiders beat writer for the San Fransisco Chronicle, said Pryor won’t be seeing the field any time soon. In addition to dropping on the team’s depth chart as a result of the trade for Palmer, Tafur said Pryor was nowhere close to being ready to play. “Palmer is going to come in and be the starter,” Tafur said. “Pryor missed five weeks on suspension with no practice time, so he probably goes back to being a project.” Tafur added that Pryor, who would be the third-string quarterback behind Palmer and Kyle Boller, will benefit from watching from the sideline. “That will give (Pryor) plenty of time to learn going into training camp next year,” he said. “I think this is probably good for (Pryor).” Kevin Noon, managing editor of Buckeyegrove.com, agreed with Tafur. “At this point I don’t see Pryor being a very viable option,” Noon said. “Could (Pryor) go in there and do a little something here or a little something there for a set or something? Sure, but the NFL game is not built the way the college game is.” Pryor quarterbacked for three seasons at OSU, though his entire junior season, which included a victory against Arkansas in the 2011 Sugar Bowl, was vacated. Pryor, along with five other players, received improper benefits in the form of tattoos for selling OSU football memorabilia. Former coach Jim Tressel also failed to self-report the violations and knowingly fielded a team with ineligible players. Tafur said the Raiders won’t attempt to experiment with Pryor at other positions. “It’s been clear that the plan, as of now, is definitely quarterback (for Pryor),” Tafur said. “I think they’ll definitely give him a full training camp before they decide to alter that plan. I’m sure in the back of their minds, there’s always the possibility. As of now, Pryor is strictly a quarterback.” Noon added that there are no certainties, given Pryor’s employer. “But we are talking about the Oakland Raiders,” Noon said. “If there’s ever a team to sit there and kind of do things sideways, it would be the Raiders.”
The Buckeyes give a shout out to the crowd after they defeated Indiana 2-0 on March 24. Credit: Gretchen Rudolph | For The LanternComing off a series win against Maryland and a road win against Pittsburgh, Ohio State (22-10, 6-1 Big Ten) continued its winning ways Friday, beginning a three-game home series against Rutgers (16-19, 0-7 Big Ten) with a 2-0 victory.Ohio State sophomore pitcher Lauren Rice earned her 13th win of the season, pitching 5.2 innings of scoreless softball, allowing four hits and two walks. Senior Morgan Ray finished the final 1.1 innings without allowing a hit, earning her second save of the season.With five hits heading into the fifth inning, Ohio State added a run to the scoreboard. Until the Senior left fielder Bri Betschel singled through the right side, scoring freshman center fielder Meg Otte scored for the first run of the game.Ohio State head coach Kelly Kovach Schoenly was impressed with the performance of Otte, who recorded two hits in three at bats, scoring one of Ohio State’s two runs. “As a freshman, she figured [out] a lot. I think she is putting all together now,” Schoenly said. For Betschell, this win means more than just the performance of one player. It shows the consistency of the team as a whole. “It’s always good to have a Big Ten win,” Betschel said. “I didn’t have a great game in the middle week. So, coming into today, I was just trying to keep it simple, and that’s exactly what I did.”The Buckeyes soon extended their lead an RBI double to center field from senior second baseman Emily Clark, scoring Betschel.Schoenly said the game tonight was very competitive, taking advantage of Rutgers senior pitcher Whitney Jones for nine runs on two hits in six innings. With games on Saturday and Sunday, chances to extend Ohio State’s winning streak, Clark said the Buckeyes will keep doing what they can do. “Coming off a win, I think we are just trying to be intentional what we do and control what we can control,” Emily said. Ohio State will take on Rutgers in the second game of the three-game set Saturday at 2 p.m.
Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Five month old Imogen Bolton has become the youngest recipient of a double lung transplant.
Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. A wealthy family is locked in a bitter legal feud over a hoard of exquisite jewellery, paintings and objets d’art worth more than £17 million.The wrangle over the gems between Brigitta and Maxine Davidson is part of an intense, wider feud that has torn apart the Davidson family, who are thought to be worth around £600 million.Their wealth was established by property magnate Manny Davison, 85, who alongside his 80-year-old wife, Brigitta, is now at war with their two children, Maxine and Gerald, over a collection of jewels, silver, antiques and other objects. Manny Davidson, the self-made millionaireCredit: NEVILE AYLING The house neighbours Prince Charles’ estate at Highgrove.Manny and Brigitta say that all the family viewed Lyegrove as the older generation’s country home, and that they “ran the house”.But their children insist it was bought as a weekend retreat for all of them.In 2011 the couple relocated to Monaco on the “clear understanding” that they could return to Lyegrove whenever they came back to England, they claim.That remained their belief until they were “excluded from the house by their children in 2015”, said Mr Rubin.The family rift has its origins in two trusts settled by the parents in 1967 – with their children named as the “principal beneficiaries”.Most of the family’s £600 million fortune is contained in the trusts, and Maxine and Gerald’s children are “the next generation of likely beneficiaries”.Giles Richardson QC, for the siblings, explained that family relations “broke down” in 2011, prompting two earlier legal disputes about the trusts which were ultimately settled in favour of Maxine and Gerald.But the family are now at loggerheads again over nearly 600 items, with the dispute set for a full blown trial at the High Court from April 25 onwards.The “most significant aspect” of the siblings’ case is Maxine’s claim for “delivery up” of the jewellery collection, said Mr Rubin.”Worn by Brigitta for many years”, the jewels are valued at £3 million, and include an exquisite sapphire ring.”The basis of this claim is either that the children paid for the jewellery, or that Brigitta gave it to Maxine under an alleged deed of gift, or by orally expressed gifts,” explained Mr Rubin. However, Brigitta is disputing her daughter’s claim to the jewels, added the QC, and “denies that she made any lifetime gifts at all”.Maxine and Gerald also allege their parents removed art and antiques from their home in the south of France after the “breakdown in relations”- moving them to their apartments in Paris or Monaco.On top of that, they are demanding that their parents account “for the use of (their children’s) funds in various bank accounts over the last 40 years”.Manny is a self-made millionaire who set up Asda Property Holdings in the 1960’s, having left school aged 14.He has spoken in the past of his regret at setting up the trust funds for his children when he was worried about inheritance tax.Maxine is a freelance art consultant and mother-of-two, while Gerald is a successful businessman who once worked alongside his father.He lives in a large house near Hampstead and has a passion for flying helicopters and collecting Aston Martins. Manny and Brigitta are suing their offspring “for the return of a large number of valuable chattels located in a country home owned by their children, Lyegrove House”, explained the couple’s QC, Stephen Rubin.They used to live at Lyegrove until they moved to Monaco in 2011, London’s High Court heard.But they say they left behind an outstanding collection of artefacts, including rare silver snuff boxes, Elizabethan tankards and old master paintings.There are over 300 items claimed by Manny and Brigitta, including part of an “exceptional” £13 million silver collection which Manny began building up in the 1980s.The couple want the valuables returned to them – while Maxine, 57, and Gerald, 55, are “counter-suing” for a further 180 items, including £3 million worth of jewellery.The total value of the objects at stake is around £17 million.Lyegrove House, a sprawling Jacobean mansion set in 18 acres of lush Gloucestershire country, was bought by Maxine and Gerald in 1993 – although their parents say the cash came from “income distributed to them from trusts settled by their parents”.
Cumbria police have been accused of failing to learn lessons from their failure in the Poppi Worthington case as it emerged that they have been criticised by the watchdog over their handling of child abuse allegations in recent weeks.Just days before a coroner ruled that Poppi had been sexually assaulted by her father before her death, the Independent Office for Police Conduct upheld a complaint against the force for failing to record a separate allegation of child abuse. Prosecutors have refused three times to put Paul Worthington on trial as police blunders, including not treating the 13-month-old’s death as a criminal inquiry for eight months, mean that there is “insufficient evidence” to charge him. The complainant in the latest case, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said it was “absolutely clear” that the force had not learnt their lessons in the five years since Poppi’s death. The revelations come as Amber Rudd, the Home Secretary, assured a local MP that she would “urgently consider” his request for a public inquiry into Poppi’s case. John Woodcock, MP for Barrow-in-Furness where Poppi was living at the time of her death in 2012, said: “I am pleased that the Home Secretary took time to see me.”She made clear she recognises the community is reeling over Poppi’s death and the terrible failings that surround it.”Mrs Rudd pledged to consider urgently what steps she can take in the light of (the inquest) verdict and asked me to work with her home office team to try to make any action she takes as effective as possible. The two senior officers responsible, Detective Superintendent Mike Forrester and Detective Inspector Amanda Sadler, were found to have a case to answer for gross misconduct but Mr Forrester retired aged 48 on a full pensions before disciplinary action could be taken. Mrs Sadler, a former Miss Great Britain beauty queen, was found guilty by her force and demoted to Sergeant. She has also since retired. Poppi Worthington was sexually abused by her father Paul, left, before her death, the coroner ruled Show more Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. “Ministers always stress they cannot direct the Crown Prosecution Service who we are praying will look at the case in a fresh light following the coroner’s verdict.”But the Home Secretary can act to help restore confidence in our policing system which has been badly damaged by this terrible affair.”The CPS and the police are currently considering the conclusion of the inquest to see whether they could review the charging decision against Mr Worthington. Mr Woodcock said that the “grotesque failings” of the police need to be examined. In his ruling on Monday, the coroner said that there had been “very significant failings” by the force but he did not make any recommendations for improvement as he noted they have accepted the criticism and have “taken action”. It has now emerged that just three days before he delivered his judgement, the IOPC upheld a complaint against the force for failing to record allegations including child abuse and actually bodily harm against a child. The complaint alleged that “Cumbria Constabulary had been obstructive and had refused to investigate a number of serious allegations which you reported to them”. The IOPC, which took over from the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) earlier this month, said that in their decision letter that they upheld the complaint as “the matters you raise are required to be recorded”. The IOPC did not give any direction to the force as by the time the judgement was published Cumbria had “realised their mistake” and appointed an officer to investigation, the complainant said. But it has been a month since they reversed their decision and the detective has still not been in touch, he added. He continued: “It does appear despite this ruling by the IPOC, Cumbria police continue to fail to investigate and fail the children of Cumbria. I would have thought such serious allegations would warrant a rapid response.”It is clear the deep and troubling problems of all agencies involved in child protection in Cumbria are still very much present.”Cumbria Constabulary spokesperson said: “The Constabulary can confirm that it is investigating a complaint made by a member of the public in relation to the service they received. “The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) referred the complaint to the Constabulary’s Professional Standards Department for a recording decision. “The Constabulary had officially recorded this as a complaint, prior to the referral from the IOPC, following receipt of further information from the complainant.“Tim Farron, the Lib Dem MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale, said: “After the utterly appalling tragedy of Poppi Worthington, we owe it to Poppi not only to get justice for her, but to learn every lesson so that no child is at risk of ending up in that situation ever again.“I welcome the IPOC’s announcement, as it is vitally important that there is complete transparency so we can ensure the police, social services and others are properly able to protect our children.”An investigation by the IPCC into Cumbria’s investigation into Poppi’s death had found that a litany of failings by officers meant that no one was brought to justice.