Month: June 2017

NBA Draft picks 2017: Results, grades for every selection

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The 2017 NBA Draft started off with a bang, but it was relatively smooth following a blockbuster trade Thursday at the Barclays Center.

The Timberwolves made the first big move of the night, sending Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and the No. 7 pick (Lauri Markkanen) to the Bulls for three-time All-Star Jimmy Butler and the No. 16 pick (Justin Patton). Butler will reunite with coach Tom Thibodeau in Minnesota and attempt to lead the young Timberwolves to the playoffs for the first time since the 2003-04 season.

Jordan Jenkins Jersey As for the draft itself, the Sixers selected Markelle Fultz at No. 1 overall, and the Lakers quickly followed with Lonzo Ball at No. 2. Despite trade rumors leading up to draft night, the Celtics stayed in their slot and chose Jayson Tatum at No. 3, and the picks fell into place from there.

Here are the NBA Draft picks, complete with grades and analysis for each selection.

With Cousins hitting free agency next season (unless Washington somehow manages to hammer out an extension), it’s entirely possible that Shanahan is just punting the quarterback position this year and will pursue his former QB. The two worked together in 2012 and 2013 when Shanahan was Washington’s offensive coordinator.

If not, then they should at least be drafting high enough to get a potential franchise quarterback. USC’s Sam Darnold, UCLA’s Josh Rosen, Louisville’s Lamar Jackson, and Wyoming’s Josh Allen are among the top prospects in what should be a loaded QB class in 2018.

That’s not a bad plan for next season, but it sure won’t make the 2017 offense any easier to watch. Hoyer hit his ceiling years ago as a mediocre journeyman, and any promise he showed last year was wiped out by a season-ending broken arm. Barkley didn’t show much in relief of Hoyer, throwing a staggering 14 interceptions in just six starts for the Bears.

If the New York Jets have the worst QB situation in the league, then the 49ers aren’t far behind. The silver lining is that Shanahan has a good track record with quarterbacks, so fans can only hope he has a plan here.

NBA free agency 2017: Kyle Lowry wants to stay with Raptors, team prez insists

Raptors president Masai Ujiri has joined Kyle Lowry in shooting down a Toronto Star report that says the All-Star point guard has “zero interest” in remaining with the team.

Key words: “Under contract.”

George, who is set to make $19.5 million next season before a player option in 2018, also denied the rampant rumors he is being courted by other teams, especially by the Lakers.

“They’re all crazy, but they’re all expected,” George said.

Many speculations are that since George is a possible rental, it would cost a new team much more than his is worth. So for now, he is going to stay with the Pacers until he is a free agent next summer. Unless he is swapped out before the trade deadline.

Naturally, George said his goal is to win a championship with the Pacers, and another goal will be to make next year’s All-Star team, which will give him a nice payday. It will also mean other teams wanting him will have to pony up more money.

Will that happen? That remains to be seen. McCloskey became Pistons general manager in 1979 and held the position until 1992. The Pistons made the NBA playoffs nine straight years from 1984-92 with five straight trips to the Eastern Conference finals and three NBA Finals appearances, including the two titles.

Nicknamed “Trader Jack” for his proclivity to make deals, McCloskey is given credit as the architect for Detroit’s famed “Bad Boys” teams led by Isiah Thomas, Bill Laimbeer and Vinnie Johnson. Both Laimbeer and Johnson were acquired in separate trades. McCloskey also acquired post player Rick Mahorn in 1985.

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NBA Finals 2017: J.R. Smith says Warriors have ‘one guy who keep kicking people’

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There are positives and negatives to having multiple days off between every NBA Finals game.

One positive is that players get a lot of time with the media and give out a lot of sound bites. One negative is that players get a lot of time with the media and give out a lot of sound bites.

Everything any player says in the media is going to to analyzed, over-analyzed, psycho-analyzed, and just for good measure analyzed again. J.R. Smith is the latest example of that.

When asked about the Cavaliers dirtying up the game with more physical play, Smith flipped the tables and alluded to Warriors forward Draymond Green, even if he didn’t mention Green by name. Apparently he isn’t letting the shot LeBron James took to the twig and berries in last year’s Finals go.

Jerebko is the Celtics’ first sub, replacing Horford.

Questionable call on Horford as Love drives baseline on him. Looks like Love initiated the contact, then lost his footing and may have traveled.
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LeBron James always finds himself on the sending or receiving end of some of the smoothest passes in transition. He finds Kyrie streaking through four Celtics and Kyrie draws a foul.

Boston leads 11-5 with 7:22 to play in the first quarter. Margin could have been even bigger if Olynyk’s early looks went in.

Lonzo Ball’s comments at Lakers workout could indicate D’Angelo Russell’s future

Lonzo Ball had his one-and-only pre-NBA Draft workout with the Lakers Wednesday, and everything appears to have gone well. In fact, Ball is already talking like he’ll be D’Angelo Russell’s replacement in Los Angeles.

They have a lot of good players. I just think they need a leader at point guard. I feel I can bring that to the team, he told the media after his workout.
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Tyson Ross Elite Jersey While he didn’t mention Russell by name, it’s easy to see that as a shot at him. After all, Russell was the No. 2 overall in the 2015 NBA Draft and he is a point guard. While Russell’s leadership skills can be questioned, many see the point guard position in Los Angeles as occupied.

With a rematch with Cleveland all but inevitable, the Warriors needed a ringer, and they got one when they landed four-time scoring champion and former MVP Kevin Durant in the biggest free-agent signing in recent memory. Durant has been all that and then some in this year’s finals against the Cavs, averaging a series-high 34 points to go along with 10 rebounds and six assists. His pull-up 3-pointer over James with 45 seconds remaining Wednesday night was the go-ahead bucket and the dagger in a 118-113 victory to give the Warriors a seemingly insurmountable 3-0 lead heading into Game 4 on Friday.

The lanky 7-footer with point-guard handles and the touch of an elite shooting guard was brought on to help the Warriors — who already had a trio of All-Stars that also included Klay Thompson and Draymond Green — down the Cavs when they didn’t have the benefit of key Cleveland players hurt or out.

According to SB Nation, Green told Durant flatly that Golden State could get to the NBA Finals without Durant. They just needed him to get over the finals hump and hoist the Larry O’Brien Trophy.

The Steelers’ offensive line has helped Roethlisberger avoided taking too many sacks or hit’s in general this season

Baalke has admitted to his failures with the quarterback position. Following their Super Bowl season, Baalke engineered a trade that sent Alex Smith to Kansas City in 2013. The 49ers made the playoffs with Colin Kaepernick as the full-time starter, but he has regressed since. Smith has not had a losing season in Kansas City, taking the Chiefs to the playoffs in three of his four seasons.

Kaepernick is just one of three quarterbacks drafted by Baalke, who also selected South Florida’s B.J. Daniels in the seventh round of the 2013 draft. Daniels is now a practice squad wide receiver with the Falcons. The 49ers took Louisiana Tech’s Jeff Driskel in the sixth round of the 2016 draft, but he was released after training camp and is now the third-string quarterback for the Bengals.

Instead of selecting quarterbacks like Teddy Bridgewater, Derek Carr, Jimmy Garoppolo, Tom Savage or AJ McCarron in 2014, Bryce Petty or Trevor Siemian in 2015, Jacoby Brissett or Dak Prescott this year, the Niners stubbornly stuck with Kaepernick and former Jaguars bust Blaine Gabbert while adding retreads like Christian Ponder and Thad Lewis. Each of those quarterbacks passed on in the three previous drafts have started and won games in the NFL.

The Steelers’ offensive line has helped Roethlisberger avoided taking too many sacks or hit’s in general this season, but the Chiefs will be fine with him hanging in there too long to welcome Justin Houston and their edge pass rush. They have the playmakers in the secondary, led by Marcus Peters and Eric Berry, to capitalize on any mistakes Roethlisberger makes against their coverage. They will be hungry to build on their NFL-leading 18 interceptions.vikings_010

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Aaron Rodgers’ dad details ‘complicated’ relationship with Packers QB

Aaron Rodgers has great chemistry with his receivers. He’s able to take relatively unknown wideouts like Geronimo Allison and Jeff Janis and make them look great.

Rodgers’ chemistry and relationship with his family, however, remains complicated, according to Rodgers’ father, Ed.
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A wide-ranging story published Sunday in the New York Times details how the Green Bay Packers star quarterback’s rise to fame has left his relationship with his family strained. At the same time, Rodgers remains close to some in his hometown of Chico, Calif.

John Jenkins Mens Jersey But Carey, who normally stood several yards behind the quarterback to his front side, scrambled around behind Manning on that play.

For some reason, I don’t know why, I ran all the way around (behind Manning), Carey told Siragusa. I just got lucky, and as I got there, they were pulling him back. Had I stayed (in front of Manning), I would have just seen him collapse into a pile. But I got a look in there, and I saw him free up, he launches it, and the rest is history.

‘Had I stayed (in my original position), I think the outcome would have been different,’ Carey said. ‘I probably would have blown the whistle.’

Just imagine if Carey had blown the whistle. Instead of a 32-yard completion, first down and instant-hero status for Tyree, the Giants would have faced fourth and long in their own territory. But it happened, and four plays later, Manning hit Plaxico Burress with a 13-yard TD pass to give the Giants a 17-14 lead with 35 seconds to play. They held on to win and end the 18-0 Patriots’ dreams of a perfect season.

After retiring from officiating, Carey served as a rules analyst on NFL broadcasts. An inventor, he owns or shares eight ski apparel patents.

EA Sports trolls Jerry Jones, Tony Romo after optimistic Super Bowl prediction

John Wall Limited Jersey America’s Team might also be America’s Most Trollable Team.

Video game giant EA Sports got in the game Tuesday, firinga digital burn toward Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, who told a Dallas radio stationhe believed former star andnow-backup quarterback Tony Romo still has a big future in the NFL.

Jonathan Toews Limited Jersey ‘I really believe that Tony Romo will play in a Super Bowl,’ Jones said, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. ‘Now try that one on. I know that if he’s healthy enough, he’ll be in a Super Bowl. I strongly believe that.’

After missing nearly the entire 2016 season on the sideline thanks to injury recovery, but mainly because he got overshadowed by rookie sensation Dak Prescott Romo’s real-word football future is uncertain. But hope always springs eternal in the digital realm.

Moseley’s arrival to Jamie’s team in 1995 was the final piece: The Generals never lost a game with him on the team, going 22-0 over the next two seasons. Their only loss in ’95 came before his arrival, a 1-point loss on a last-second interception.

‘It was a combination, Moseley said, of young men playing, giving it everything they had, a coach who had a lot to prove and a player, a former NFL MVP who had the ability and the willingness to step into a situation that he wasn’t sure about.’

It was a talented team from top to bottom: not just Moseley.

Oregon State ace Luke Heimlich is registered sex offender, report says

Luke Heimlich, the star pitcher on the best college baseball team in the country, pleaded guilty to child molestation when he was 15, according to court documents obtained by The Oregonian.

Heimlich, now 21, is set to lead Oregon State in its super regional against Vanderbilt this weekend with a berth in the College World Series on the line. The left-hander is rated the No. 43 overall prospect for this month’s MLB draft by Baseball America, though his stock has been on the rise lately.

You’re going to be open to using steroids in 1996. Like, really open to it, Jones wrote. And you should be forever grateful that your wife was around to discuss it with you. When you raise the topic with her, and tell her what you’re considering, she’s going to ask you this:

‘Would you be able to look your parents in the eye if you earned a bunch of accolades and honors while taking steroids? Would you be OK with that?’

According to Jones, that shame was all he needed to hear to avoid using performance-enhancing drugs.

Jones decided to end his career in 2012 after 18 years in the majors. Even though he didn’t quite collect 3,000 hits or smash 500 homers, Jones said walking away was the best decision.

Elite Mens Jason McCourty Jersey You’ll do the right thing. For the right reasons. It will be time to devote yourself to being the husband and father and man that your family has always deserved, Jones wrote.

Elite Mens Rajon Rondo Jersey Jones goes deeper into his personal life in his newly released book, Ballplayer.

Chargers coach Anthony Lynn ready to make Melvin Gordon elite

Melvin Gordon was easily one of the biggest fantasy football studs last year before an injury ended his season after 13 games.

The second-year pro out of Wisconsin was a disappointment as a rookie, but he finished last season with more than 1,400 total yards and 12 touchdowns. New Chargers coach Anthony Lynn thinks Gordon can do even more next season.

“I’ve watched some tape on him,” Lynn said, via ESPN.com. “Man, he has some upside. He did a hell of a job from his rookie year to his sophomore year. And I told him we can take this to another level. We’re going to do some things running-wise that I can think can help him.”

Despite the great leap between Gordon’s first and second years in the NFL, Lynn believes there is still room for growth.

“AB is a big contributor to our success, has been for several years now, and I think he’s capable of continuing to be that kind of player,” Steelers president Art Rooney II said. “I think he’s someone who wants to be a great player and works hard to be that. Hopefully, he’ll continue to evolve as a player and as a person.”

Going on 29, Brown was set to make $4.71 million in the final year of a six-year restructured contract, but now he’ll easily make more than salary leaders A.J. Green, Julio Jones and Dez Bryant.

A five-time Pro Bowler, Brown deserves every penny after four outstanding seasons in Pittsburgh. He finished the 2016 season with 106 catches for 1,284 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Brown has had four straight seasons of at least 100 receptions and led the league in catches in 2014 and 2015. His 136 receptions for 1,834 yards in 2015 broke his own franchise records set a year earlier, when he established a team record with 13 touchdowns. texans_136

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Who is singing the national anthem at Super Bowl 51?

Jalin Marshall Elite Jersey Lady Gaga used her incredible Super Bowl 50 national anthem performance to springboard herself to an even bigger stage: the halftime performance for Super Bowl 51 in Houston.

Authentic Adam Joseph Duhe Jersey In 2017, Luke Bryan will get his chance to serenade the country — and the world — with his singing of The Star-Spangled Banner before Super Bowl 51, which pits the Patriots against the Falcons.

Kansas City had one of the highest salaried rosters in the NFL last season and will need to make some difficult decisions in 2017. The Chiefs have two potential high-priced free agents in safety Eric Berry and DT Dontari Poe, and $4 million in cap space won’t be enough to cover one, let alone both.

The team would save $7 million by releasing running back Jamaal Charles, which should be a given roster move. They would then need to decide between their two quarterbacks, Alex Smith and Nick Foles. Cutting Smith would save the team $9.7 million, while cutting Foles would save $10.75 million.

They also could look to rework Jeremy Maclin’s contract, which calls for a $12.4 million cap hit.

“I just read my blocks and saw one defender in my way,” White said. “I dipped my shoulder and just wanted to do everything I could to get the ball in the end zone for my teammates. They deserved it.”

White was swarmed by Patriots players as confetti fell from the top of NRG Stadium. In the chaos, White lost track of the football that he snuck across the goal-line just before his knee hit the turf.

“I have no idea where it is,” a laughing White said. “I kind of left it behind because I was trying to get up and run around and stuff. I was real excited. I can’t really put it into words.”