Monthly Archives: June 2017

NBA trade tracker: Rumors, reported trades ahead of draft, free agency

NBA trade rumors are flying ahead of Thursday’s draft. Two of the top three picks in the 2017 NBA Draft have already changed hands; the Sixers get the No. 1 overall pick from the Celtics, who get Philly’s pick at No. 3. Also, the Lakers are reportedly clearing cap space in a trade with the Nets in order to make a run at Paul George, and maybe LeBron James next summer.
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Game Phillip Dorsett Jersey Follow along with our NBA trade tracker for the latest rumors, reports and confirmed deals.

The Clippers have been in contact with several teams, including the Suns, while exploring the market for center DeAndre Jordan, according to ESPN’s Chris Haynes.

Phoenix reportedly shot down discussions with L.A. regarding a potential trade of Tyson Chandler and the Suns’ No. 4 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft in exchange for Jordan.

A husband and father of three, LeBron Jr. (12), Bryce (9) and Zhuri (2), James said not being able to be with them during a time like this is killing him.

They have great minds, they’re very open to life and love life and things of that nature, James said. So for me to be able just to try to give them the blueprint as much as I can on what life has to offer, but at the end of the day they’re going to have to walk their own path, and hopefully I give them enough life skills throughout their journey where when they’re ready to fly, they can fly on their own.

James said he’ll eventually get back to being engaging and energetic, as he typically is, during interviews but for now he’ll find solace in the hope that what he and his family endured won’t be in vain.

Time heals all, he said. And at the end of the day, like I said, if this incident that happened to me and my family today can keep the conversation going and can shed light on us trying to figure out a way to keep progressing and not regressing, then I’m not against it happening to us again. I mean it’s as long as my family is safe.

Cavaliers to interview Chauncey Billups for top basketball executive role

Chauncey Billups is at the top Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert’s list of candidates to fill the team’s lead basketball executive role vacated by the departure of GM David Griffin, The Vertical reports.

Billups is interested in the front-office gig and is expected to meet with Gilbert Tuesday, per ESPN.

According to The Vertical, Billups’ title would be president of basketball operations, and he would hire a GM with “day-to-day front office experience that he doesn’t have on his résumé.”

The Celtics will get an additional first-round pick in the 2018 or 2019 draft in exchange for moving down two spots in the first round — and could very well end up selecting the same player they had in mind anyway, with Fultz not a great fit due to the presence of Isaiah Thomas and the Lakers expected to take Lonzo Ball at No. 2.

Danny Ainge says that he believes the player he will select at No. 3 is quite possibly the player he would have selected at No. 1.

Reports first emerged Friday that the teams were in serious discussion about swapping picks, and Fultz made a hastily arranged visit to Philadelphia on Saturday to get to know some of Sixers players and executives.

Sixers big man Joel Embiid tweeted a photo of himself with Fultz, Simmons and Robert Covington along with the caption: “This should be legendary if it happens”.

Fultz, who recently turned 19, averaged 23.2 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists as a freshman on a Washington team that went 9-22.redskins_007

Kawhi Leonard injury update: Spurs star out for Game 4 with season on the line

With their backs against the wall, the Spurs will attempt to make NBA history without their star player.

Kawhi Leonard is officially out for Monday’s Game 4, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters before the game.

Leonard, one of three finalists for the NBA MVP Award, has not played the past two games of the Western Conference finals because of a sprained left ankle. He suffered the injury landing on Warriors center Zaza Pachulia’s foot during a jump shot in Game 1.

The Spurs will also be without the services of veteran forward David Lee, who suffered a left knee injury in the first quarter of Saturday’s 120-108 loss.

No team in NBA history has rallied from a 3-0 deficit (0-125).

LeBron James ties the game, then gives the Cavs the lead at the free throw line. 73-72 Cleveland.

What a sequence: LeBron James missed a tomahawk dunk to take the lead. It was set up by an incredible two-handed, full-court pass by Love.

Crowder slipped on a wet spot on the court and appears to be moving gingerly but remains in the game.

Just like that, it’s a three-point game. Kyrie kicks it to LeBron, who swings the ball to J.R. for a three. 69-66 Celtics.

Oh boy, LeBron is playing with fire. He reaches around Horford on an attempted steal but isn’t called. That could have been his fifth foul.

Game Mens Dexter McCluster Jersey Love battles for a rebound and finishes Thompson’s missed free throw. He’s been a force down low this quarter.

Game Mens Aaron Lynch Jersey Marcus Smart banks in a high-lofting three over LeBron. LeBron is visibly hesitant defensively in the third quarter.

NBA Draft rumors: Handing out grades for blockbuster Sixers-Celtics trade

The trade rumors that have sent shockwaves throughout the league finally became more than rumors on Saturday night, as the Celtics agreed to trade the No. 1 overall pick to the 76ers, according to a report from David Aldridge. The 76ers, in turn, will select Washington guard Markelle Fultz first overall.

Jaden Schwartz Elite Jersey It’s hard to see how the Clippers can salvage the Paul-Griffin-DeAndre Jordan trio. But it’s still likely that the three stay together, and if LA can keep that core and persuade the Knicks to send over Anthony as part of a sign-and-trade including Redick, the Clippers would at least have one more piece who would fit well with the team’s legacy of failing to live up to their postseason potential.

Ideally, Anthony would be willing to be the team’s sixth man, allowing them to continue to start a defensive small forward like Luc Mbah a Moute. That would give the Clippers a unique weapon off the bench, and maximize their ability to expose other teams’ reserves. That would require an ego-shrink from Anthony, and that might not be in the offing. And it might not get them all that much closer to the Warriors.
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The Sixers were looking to make a splash in free agency last summer, but could not find a fit. But they’ll be doing the same this summer, and with a herd of young talent 鈥?Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid and Dario Saric 鈥?on hand, they could be competitive sooner rather than later.

A contender in Philly, though? That’s years off still, and it would require some hypotheticals converting into reality. First, they’d need all that young talent to max out its potential. Second, they’d need health, and given the recent history of Simmons and Embiid, that’s no guarantee.

Bill Belichick set to move into rarefied coaching air with or without Super Bowl win

Sporting News from time to time ranks the greatest coaches of all time, across all sports. The last time we did was last June, for a tragic reason, Pat Summitt’s death. At that time, we placed Bill Belichick 17th overall, behind three other NFL coaches.

We’re gonna need a new list.

It needs adjustment now, with Belichick preparing for his seventh Super Bowl with the Patriots, and it might need adjustment again if he wins it for the fifth time.

Everybody take a deep breath, because the polarizing coach of the most polarizing franchise of our time is within reach of some iconic names, and is in position to separate himself from them all sometime soon.

Timmons had two late sacks and 14 tackles to lead the team. Dupree had a half-sack and one monstrous, tone-setting hit on Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore. Shazier was terrific in short-to-intermediate coverage, with an INT of Moore to show for it.

But there was Harrison, all 38-plus years of him, delivering like he was the younger stud of their two most recent Super Bowl-winning teams. Harrison had 1.5 sacks, a forced fumble and was a general terror against both the pass and run.

The Steelers have been itching to restore their linebacker prowess at this level over the past three seasons. They needed Harrison to return to star in a familiar scheme, and both Dupree and Shazier to shake off their early-career injuries. Timmons remained a reliable linchpin, but now all four linebackers are all killer, no filler.

Harrison still can lay the smackdown as a physical specimen, and Dupree has picked up the best, most intimidating parts of Harrison’s game working the other edge. Shazier stays as active as Harrison, and his pure speed allows him to zip around laterally to complement Timmons coming hard upfield.
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Brandon Marshall fed up with salary talk: ‘Any team should be happy to have me for $7.5M’

Game Youth Emmanuel Lamur Jersey Brandon Marshall is among the most talented wide receivers to play in the NFL during the last decade, but his woebegone situations have cursed his career.

Now, the 33-year-old is coming off his worst statistical season 59 catches for 788 yards and three touchdowns since his rookie year and everyone is saying he’s overpaid and over the hill.

People need to get away from me due $7.5 million, Marshall said Wednesday morning on WFAN radio’s Boomer and Carton Show, via ESPN.com. Get away from my salary. That’s underpaid. Any team should be happy to have me for $7.5 million.

I’ve probably been underpaid the last six years, if we’re really about comparing production to receivers across the league and what I’ve been doing. Now, when you only catch 50-something balls for over 700 yards and you’re 30-something years old, that’s when teams come to you like, ‘We don’t think you’re good anymore.’

When asked about his family ties Thursday at the Packers’ practice facility, the quarterback told reporters, I just don’t think it’s appropriate talking about family stuff publicly.

Game Youth Philadelphia Eagles Jersey While the family ties are strained, Rodgers remains in touch with others in his hometown. He still talks with Craig Rigsbee, the athletic director at nearby Butte Community College, where Rodgers played one season before transferring to Cal. And he helped pay for the football team at his old school, Pleasant Valley High, to travel to the state championship game last year. He even sent along an inspirational video the team’s coach played for the team.

Fog forces Packers to fly from Milwaukee, arrive late to Atlanta

Green Bay’s conference championship weekendgot off to a tough start.

The Packerswere scheduled to depart Green Bay’s Austin Straubel International Airport on Saturday around 2 p.m. local timebut were unable to fly outdue to dense fog. According to ESPN, the team was forced to takebuses 125 miles toMilwaukee’s General Mitchell International Airport and eventually took off around 5:30 p.m. local time.

The Packers finally arrived inAtlanta nearly three and a halfhours later than initially scheduled around 8 p.m. ET.
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The NFC Championship game between the Packers and Falconsis slated to kickoffat 3:05 p.m. ET before thePittsburgh Steelers visit theNew England Patriotsin the AFC Championship game at 6:40 p.m. ET.

Authentic Youth Justin Britt Jersey Chris Hogan was having a dominant first half before he caught a 34-yard touchdown pass on a flea flicker. The trick play made for an easy Tom Brady completion against the Steelers’ man coverage, and Hogan’s seventh catch of the half also gave him his second touchdown of the half. The Patriots needed only 3:48 to answer the Steelers’ touchdown with their own. 17-6, Patriots.

Most of those losses came during the Brett Favre era, and we sketched out the type of juvenile behavior that led to over the summer before his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Yet the seven playoff losses under Mike McCarthy have taken that to the next level. Green Bay had a 15-1 record wiped away on Jan. 15, 2012, in a 37-20 loss to the New York Giants. It watched Colin Kaepernick run all over the place in a 45-31 loss to San Francisco on Jan. 12, 2013. Those are painful.

The other five losses, however, were decided on the last play. Four of those losses were in overtime. They stick out as much as anything because of their sadistic nature. They tell a story; a painful story worth reading. I don’t need a YouTube video to show that pain. It’s still there.

Pirates demote Tony Watson from closer role

The Pirates have alleviated Tony Watson from his misery as the team’s closer.
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Pittsburgh made the decision Friday to demote Watson from the closer role. The veteran reliever has blown his last four save chances, raising his ERA to 4.44 this season.

According to the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, Felipe Rivero and Juan Nicasio will will now split ninth-inning duties.

Having lost six of their last eight games — largely due to poor bullpen performances — Clint Hurdle finally decided to pull the plug on Watson as closer.

From a fantasy standpoint, neither Rivero nor Nicasio present much upside in the near future, unless one runs away with the job. For now, Pittsburgh’s bullpen has become a wait-and-see situation for standard-league fantasy owners.

Elite Womens Michael Wilhoite Jersey The Pirates are 5 1/2 games back in the National League Central. If they continue to lose, they may become big sellers before the July 31 trade deadline.

For Nicole and Scott’s son, only one sport wasn’t an option — football. That was a decision they made long before Jordon was born.

Scott played football at N.C. State, and he was good enough as an offensive tackle for the Wolfpack that the Saints picked him in the 12th round of the 1992 draft. Injuries crushed that dream, though — a separated disc in his back was the final blow — and shaped Scott’s thinking when it came to his future children.

You can get injured in anything. We know that. Not even sports-related, Nicole says. But because of Scott’s experience through multiple surgeries and his experience with ending his NFL opportunity really early, we just said, we can’t do that. If we have kids, we’re not letting them play football, but we’ll surround them with other sports.

Steelers place franchise tag on Le’Veon Bell with eye on long-term deal

Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert said two weeks ago he wants Le’Veon Bell to retire as a member of the Steelers.

“Why ruffle feathers when you don’t have to?” Albert told the Sun Sentinel. “It’s the business of the game. I honestly believe where I’m going to go is the right fit. It is going to be a surprise when (the terms) comes out.

“Where I’m going they put a lot of faith in me, and they know they are getting loyalty back,” Albert said. “My faith, me being a man of Christ, I know God is going to point me where he wants me to be.”

Albert — who signed a five-year, $47 million contract with the Dolphins in 2014 — has struggled with injuries during his time in Miami. The three-time Pro Bowler and first-round selection by the Chiefs in the 2008 NFL Draft never played a full 16-game schedule in three seasons with the team. He missed four starts in 2016.

Jackson will become a free agent this offseason, and it’s been speculated that the Redskins are going to let him sign with a different team. Only, Jackson would like to stay in Washington.

“I do want to still be here,” Jackson said, via Redskins.com. “My family and my house, I have everything here and I don’t want to be in a transaction and move. First things first, I do want to be here and hopefully we can make it work. But once again this is a business so things happen.

“I’m just really excited about the opportunity I have to sit and now the ball’s in my corner a little bit and see what we can do. I’m just excited and I’m going to let my agent care of all that. Ready to just sit back and whatever offers come in but obviously like I said I do want to be here.”

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Jeremy Hill has struggled after his breakout rookie season

Kendall Reyes Game Jersey While we’re on weird stats, the Patriots also won the game wearing white jerseys, making it 12 out of the last 13 seasons a team wearing white has won the Super Bowl.

New England led the game for exactly zero seconds, but still finished with the largest margin of victory in a Super Bowl in franchise history. The previous wins were by three, three, three and four points, respectively.
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While this isn’t exactly a groundbreaking stat, it is kind of interesting to see considering the circumstances. One thing is for sure: If New England is in a Super Bowl, it’s going to be a good game.

Jeremy Hill has struggled after his breakout rookie season, and the Bengals’ offense, despite immense talent and high draft picks, continues to struggle. Linebacker is certainly an option, but the Bengals need to upgrade on offense with some sort of playmaker. Fournette could be that.

The Bills may have their eyes on another quarterback in this class (Trubisky), but they’ve already shown their hand on their desire for a new quarterback for the future. Kizer is a worthy first-round quarterback but had substantial struggles in 2016 late in games, and teams have some mental makeup concerns about him.

Would the Jets move Wilkerson despite paying him $22 million last year? If the price is right, they should. The acquiring team would owe Wilkerson only $15 million for this year and could walk away in 2018 if he busts. If he plays well, the team would have Wilkerson under contract in 2018 and 2019 for a total of $32.5 million. That deal is better for another team than trading for Richardson and having to pay him a full contract.