Monthly Archives: June 2017

NBA Finals 2017: Did the refs decide the outcome of Game 4? The internet thinks so

Willie Snead Game Jersey The Cavaliers began their comeback attempt Friday win an exciting win over the Warriors after scoring 49 points in the first quarter and 86 points in the first half, both of which broke NBA Finals records.

Unfortunately, the game was muddled by some questionable officiating, scuffles on the court, and a minor fight in the stands. One fan was ejected, and the refs hardly ever had the game under control in the second half.
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It begs the question: Did the NBA have an agenda to extend the series and have its officials play a role in the outcome of the game? Probably not, but conspiracy theorists will say yes, and so did fans on social media during the game. After all, ESPN projects Warriors owners Joe Lacob and Peter Guber will make approximately $11 million if the Warriors clinch in Game 5 in the Bay Area.

I think we gave (the Cavs) a little too much respect in those first two games, Jerebko told TNT’s Charles Barkley following Game 3. We’re out there to compete and I don’t think we competed that hard those first two games, like you said. I just wanted to come out there and play with some aggression and play with some attitude.

In the playoffs, it’s all about game-to-game adjustments. Stevens would be wise not to count on Smart playing like Stephen Curry, LeBron James scoring 11 points and turning the ball over six times and his team hitting 18 3-pointers (five above their playoff average) again. It’d behoove Boston to give Cleveland a different look out of the gate and insert Jerebko, a high-energy player who’s up to the challenge of taking on King James and all his merry men and carrying the momentum of a big-time postseason performance into Game 4.

Stevens has nothing to lose and everything to gain by inserting Jerebko into the starting five. A little aggression and attitude could go a long way.

NBA Draft rumors: Sixers, Celtics reportedly in serious trade talks over No. 1 pick

The Celtics are seriously considering trading the No. 1 pick in next week’s NBA Draft to the Philadelphia 76ers, ESPN reported Friday.

A follow-up report from The Vertical said the Celtics would get Philadelphia’s No. 3 overall pick in this year’s draft plus a future first-rounder, among other picks.

Rumors have been floating around about movement at the top of the draft as the Lakers are supposedly considering trading down with the Sacramento Kings for the No. 5 and No. 10 picks, but while that is big news, this one may be bigger.

The Top 3 prospects in the NBA Draft are as follows according to ESPN’s Chad Ford: Washington’s Markelle Fultz, UCLA’s Lonzo Ball and Kansas’ Josh Jackson.

Your opinion of Monk depends on how much you believe in his jump shot. If you think this elite athlete is also the elite jump shooter that he was at Kentucky this year, you believe he can average 20 per game in the NBA. If you think he’s more of a good, but streaky shooter, you think he’s more of a bench player at the next level due to the rest of his game.

Ntilikina is a long French guard with the potential to become a lead ball handler, but he’s not quite there yet. He’s a good shooter and strong defender, but he needs to improve his overall physical profile as well as take a leap athletically in order to get into the lane consistently. A good developmental team with a strong strength and conditioning program would really help him.


Magic Johnson says only one player on Lakers is untouchable

Magic Johnson sounds like a basketball executive ready to deal, saying Thursday that forward Brandon Ingram is the only player on the Lakers roster the team would not consider trading.

I would say probably the only player that we would say, hey, we would probably not move is Brandon Ingram, Johnson, the Lakers president of basketball operations, told ESPN Los Angeles.

But Fultz is the consensus No. 1 pick, and since the Lakers hold the No. 2 pick, they would likely have trade up to get him. Givony says multiple sources indicate the Lakers might be willing to move forward Julius Randle and the No. 2 pick to Boston to get that coveted No. 1 selection.

Of course, plenty of rumors have surrounded the top of this draft for the past few weeks. At one point, the Lakers were said to be considering trading down in the first round.

While the Lakers have expressed interest in Josh Jackson, Givony said the former Kansas star’s workout with the team, did not go well at all. Givony said Jackson struggled with his shooting and handles.
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Goble accepted responsibility for the confusion about the earlier technical, saying he had not made sure the scorer’s table knew Kerr had been assessed the technical.
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After calling the loose ball foul on Draymond Green, I noticed the reaction by Coach Kerr and then assessed the technical foul, Goble said. In the moment, I thought I had verbalized to the table that the technical foul was on Coach Kerr. After looking at the video, I did not verbalize to the table, and looking at the video, I should have done a better job of making sure that the table knew the technical foul was on Coach Kerr.

Mark Jackson: Phil Jackson has been ‘a failure’ handling Knicks, Carmelo Anthony

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Phil Jackson took over as the Knicks’ president in 2014 and in the three seasons since, New York has gone 80-166 (.325). His decisions as an executive clearly haven’t worked out, and that’s why former NBA coach Mark Jackson had some harsh words for Jackson.

Speaking on a conference call Tuesday, the ABC/ESPN commentator began by offering praise for the coaching legend, but quickly turned to criticism. A New York native and former Knicks guard, Jackson, the commentator, has some emotional ties to the team.

In addition to brokering trades that bolstered Detroit’s roster, Trader Jack was also savvy in the draft. He picked Thomas second overall in the 1981 draft and took fellow Basketball Hall of Famer Joe Dumars in the first round of the 1985 NBA Draft. He picked John Salley 11th overall in 1986 and then took a chance on a little-known prospect named Dennis Rodman in the second round of the ’86 draft.

Perhaps the best move McCloskey made during his time with the Pistons was hiring Chuck Daly in 1983 as the team’s coach. Daly was able to harness the talent McCloskey acquired and set franchise records with 467 regular-season victories and 71 playoff wins.

The Pistons honored McCloskey and his teams’ successes with a ceremony in 2008 when a banner with his name was raised to the rafters.
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McCloskey later served in the front office of the Timberwolves from 1992-95 and was then in the Raptors office in 2004 on an interim basis.

The McCloskey family announced last month that Alzheimer’s disease had stricken its patriarch. He and his wife, Leslie, had a son, Mike, and daughter, Molly, who has become a best-selling author.

Coleman is better at getting around would-be tacklers in the open field

Ben Roethlisberger would join the exclusive list of three-time Super Bowl winners and reach No. 3 on the all-time playoff wins list should he win out.

Tom Brady could win his fifth Super Bowl ring and leave no doubt among even his biggest skeptics that he’s the best quarterback in pro football history.

STEELE: Brady, Rogers models of QBs who can carry teams

What about Aaron Rodgers Right now he’s 9-6 in his postseason career. If he wins out, he’ll capture his second Super Bowl ring and move to 11-6 all time in the postseason, which would crack the top 10 in wins, tied with Troy Aikman and Roger Staubach.

Freeman excels at getting yards after initial contact. Coleman is better at getting around would-be tacklers in the open field. That kind of second-effort production neutralizes the Seahawks’ high-effort, typically clean tackling.

Ryan didn’t hang in there and wait for the Seahawks’ pass rush, either. He also was a Seahawks killer in getting the ball out quickly, getting it to his receivers when they were good in position to shoot out of a cannon after the catch.

The Falcons loaded up on speed and quickness to complement go-to wideout Julio Jones, players such as Coleman, Mohamed Sanu and Tayler Gabriel. Jones, Coleman and Sanu all scored on the other side of Ryan passes. Gabriel delivered as the big-play guy again.

Understand this, at least in the context of our rankings: Seven months ago, before he convened his 17th training camp with the Patriots and his 22nd total as an NFL head coach, Belichick stood behind only Paul Brown (14th), Don Shula (sixth) and Vince Lombardi (second). The top five for all sports is, from the top, John Wooden, Lombardi, Bear Bryant, Phil Jackson and Mike Krzyzewski.


Chargers admit mistake, drop new L.A. logo after criticism

The San Diego Chargers’ old lightning bolt logo remained essentially unchanged for more than 40 years.

Chargers president of business operations A.G. Spanos told NBC Sports the team miscalculated how the logo would be received by the public.

The logo that was revealed on Thursday was meant to help launch our brand into the market and supplement not replace our official team marks, Spanos told NBC. Clearly, we miscalculated how the logo would be received, and weve taken it out of the rotation.

After losing Ameer Abdullah (foot) and Theo Riddick (wrist) to season-ending injuries, Zenner has stepped up the past two weeks for the No. 6 seeded Lions, who take on the Seahawks on Saturday. The South Dakota State product played all but two snaps against the Packers in Week 17, finishing with a career-high 69 yards rushing and adding 41 yards receiving. But, according to Bennett, it’s the little things that make Zenner special.

That surprises me a lot because you dont see a lot of (white) running backs in the NFL, theres just a couple, Bennett said. But hes right now, hes really, really good. He does a lot of great things, I think. Even in the pass protection game, he steps up and he does a great job of protection. Im not surprised that hes the starter right now because of all the great things that hes doing.

Elite Youth Devin Hester Jersey Bennett also had an interesting way to describe former teammate Golden Tate, who won a Super Bowl with Bennett and the Seahawks in 2013.

Golden Tate is just one of those players he can do so much, Bennett said. He can catch the ball, run the ball. His YAC (yards after catch) is just outstanding. And sometimes, he got the weirdest looking body but he can always make plays. I always think he looks like a bird, but I can never understand how that body does what it does.
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Golden was always a great teammate, a great, fun guy, always popped around, always brought donuts. Always appreciate the D-line and it was fun to have him on our team.

Mike Tomlin called the Patriots a bunch of holes during locker room speech

Mike Tomlin probably didn’t know he was being recorded when he called the Patriots a bunch of holes during his postgame speech on Sunday night.As the Steelers coach was speaking to the team, Antonio Brown was streaming it out on Facebook Live for fans. The video has been deleted from Brown’s Facebook page, but TMZ Sports was able to capture it before it was removed.

Judging by the video, Tomlin clearly isn’t happy that the Patriots got a day-and-a-half head start on their preparations and recovery for the Steelers.

Sunday’s AFC Championship is going to be a lot of fun.
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The Astros get great value at No. 15 with J.B. Bukauskas, a polished right-hander from North Carolina. He was projected as high as No. 6 in many mock drafts, but his final start for the Tar Heels was a bit of a disaster in tne NCAA Tournament against Davidson. If that’s the reason he dropped, well, that’s kind of awesome for the Astros. If he advances through the minors as expected, he should be one of the first few players from this draft to make the majors.

Gotta love it when guys get drafted while their team is playing. That’s the case for righty Alex Faedo, a starting pitcher for the Florida Gators. He’s not pitching tonight, but if you want to follow along with Florida’s game against Wake Forest, here’s the link.
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Hi, Mariners fans. Your team drafted a five-tool first baseman who is such a polished hitter that he might not take a long time before arriving in the majors. And he might wind up in the outfield if that’s a quicker path, too.

Lance McCullers is latest member of Astros’ rotation to hit DL

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Based on the way the Astros have dominated the competition so far this season, it appears the most significant threat to Houston’s playoff hopes might be internal.

Rogie Vachon Jersey Lance McCullers landed on the 10-day disabled list Monday with lower back discomfort, the fourth member of the Astros’ rotation to hit the DL in just over two weeks after Dallas Keuchel (neck), Joe Musgrove (shoulder) and Charlie Morton (back). Add in the shoulder and elbow injuries that have kept Collin McHugh from making his 2017 debut, and Houston’s starting staff has taken a beating.

Winning two out of three games would cut the lead to a game, and sweeping the series would have put Boston up a game. After winning the first game of the series 5-4 Tuesday, the Red Sox were confident they could do it.

But over games two and three of the series, the Sox lost to the Bombers by a combined 17-1 and dropped to three games back of their arch-rival in the process.

The Yankees being the Yankees, and having some of the best social media people in all of baseball to boot, they took some parting shots at the Sox after each game they won.

The Yanks weren’t done yet. After Gary Sanchez hit two home runs in a 9-1 win in the third game of the series, they went back to the ‘gram and let one last shot ring out.

Even in blowouts, Red Sox-Yankees series are intense. Here’s looking forward to seeing which shots are fired in their next series, which starts July 14 in Boston.

Julian Edelman grabs piece of history with one of Super Bowl’s greatest catches

Julio Jones snagged a deep throw from Matt Ryan just past a Patriots defender’s reach, dragging his feet inbounds. He set the Falcons up inside the Patriots’ 25-yard line, put them in position to clinch their first-ever Super Bowl win with less than five minutes left in regulation … and put himself in contention for the greatest catch in NFL history, on the biggest stage and in the brightest spotlight.

It wasn’t even the greatest catch of the fourth quarter.

Non-exclusive tags are most commonly used. It means a team will pay the tagged player no less than the average of the five highest salaries at the player’s position, or 120 percent of the player’s cap number from the previous season, whichever is greater. The player is allowed to negotiate with other teams, but his current team can match any offer sheet. If a player’s current team declines to match another team’s offer, it will be awarded two first-round draft picks as compensation.

Exclusive tags are more rare. Only Broncos linebacker Von Miller (2016) and Saints quarterback Drew Brees (2012) have received the exclusive tag since 2012. The salary is calculated the same for players issued non-exclusive tags. The only difference is that the tagged player cannot negotiate with other teams.

Transition tags pay a player the average of the 10 highest-paid players at his position. A tagged player is allowed to negotiate with other teams. The player’s current team can match any offer given to a transition-tagged player, but the team will not be given compensation if it decides not to match.

Teams have until July 15 to reach a long-term contract with a tagged player. If no agreement can be reached by then, the player will play on a one-year contract.

Kyle Shanahan has the goods to fix 49ers — but first, foil Patriots

Kyle Shanahan, current NFL offensive coordinator, is the main man as the Falcons try to upset the Patriots in Super Bowl 51. Kyle Shanahan, the near-future NFL head coach, is also the right man to make the 49ers a lot better.

Kids James Develin Jersey After the completion of the Super Bowl, all 32 teams officially are into offseason mode and are shifting the majority of their focus to the 2017 NFL Draft.

The draft order may be set, but where the quarterbacks will land and where the top pass-rushers will be selected is far from clear.

This two-round Mock Draft has the Browns getting two top end prospects along with their quarterback of the future. One running back lands in a situation that could make him the next Ezekiel Elliott. Plus, Alabama and Ohio State dominate the top 15 picks overall.

Kids Jim Kelly Jersey Pro: You saw the College Football Playoff National Championship Game. Watson led Clemson to a 35-31 victory. He was the best player in college football the last two seasons, and he’s a dynamic playmaker and a fantastic team leader. Dabo Swinney says, “They pass on Deshaun Watson, they’re passing on Michael Jordan.”

Con: It doesn’t seem that easy, and how Watson’s game translates to the NFL is still a valid question. Watson threw 30 interceptions the last two seasons. If the Browns can get Watson at No. 12, however, then it might be that slam dunk they are looking for.