Sports News

Loading...

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Evaluating the Oakland Raiders 2012 Draft 1 year later

ROUND 1
No Pick

ROUND 2
No Pick

ROUND 3
Pick #95: Tony Bergstrom OT, Utah

Bergstrom was projected as a Guard who may fill in some at tackle by most teams, but to this point he has held onto his desired position at left tackle......as the backup.  That said, he appeared in 9 games, starting the finale and has shown the kind of mean streak that the Raiders knew he had. 

He may still end up at guard if he can't beat out Jared Veldheer, but that may end up to work out the other way around.  The upside is that either of them would likely be an upgrade at one of the guard spots for a team that wants to run the ball.

A solid 3rd round pick.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

New York Yankees’ slugger Curtis Granderson sidelined for 10 weeks with broken arm

The New York Yankees are going to be missing quite a bit of offensive power when the Major League Baseball season gets underway as slugger Curtis Granderson has joined Alex Rodriguez on the disabled list. Granderson led the team in home runs last season with 43, but is set to miss at least the first eight weeks of the upcoming season after being struck by a pitch during a preseason game and breaking his arm.

The outfielder was making his first plate appearance in a Grapefruit League contest on Feb. 24 against the Toronto Blue Jays when left-handed pitcher J.A. Happ nailed him with a fastball in the first inning of the game in Tampa, Florida. The pitch struck Granderson in the right forearm and the 31-year-old left the game immediately. The three-time MLB all-star also drove in 106 runs last season, but his batting average was just .232.

Granderson was naturally disappointed with the news that he’ll miss a good portion of the season. He said he was feeling great and was looking forward to opening day and everything changed for him after just five pitches. He admitted that things could have been worse, so he’ll just have to rest and recover and get back to action as soon as the arm is properly healed, which will likely be sometime early in May.

Portland Trail Blazers’ Big Three Has Championship Potential

The 2013 NBA trade deadline came and went last Thursday. It was a day when a ham sandwich would have dominated the headlines had it gotten traded. Instead, the biggest names to be moved were perennial bench players JJ Redick and Jordan Crawford.

The Portland Trail Blazers made one move; Neil Olshey turned an obscure Greek player and a trade exemption into serviceable but limited backup point guard Eric Maynor. It was a nice move from Olshey - opportunistic, swift, and smart. But in the grand scheme of the Blazers, Eric Maynor doesn't change a thing.

The Blazers tried to move JJ Hickson, and if you believe various reports, Hickson tried to move himself to Brooklyn, but nothing materialized. Portland isn't making the playoffs this year. Try as they might, the Blazers are too young, too inconsistent, and too horrendous off the bench to make a serious playoff push in the competitive Western Conference. The Blazers would have to overtake more talented, experienced, and possibly surging teams in Houston and the LA Lakers to move into a lethal eight seed, where they would have no chance of winning a first round playoff series against San Antonio or Oklahoma City.

Tom Brady signs three-year contract extension with New England Patriots

Tom Brady finalized a contract extension with the New England Patriots on Monday that should help the team stay financially solvent.
According to ESPN, Brady and the Patriots starting talking last month about the new deal last month.

Brady will now be extended through the 2017 season which will keep him with the Patriots until he is 40-years-old.

The three-year $27 million deal will pay Brady a $3 million signing bonus with $7 million due in 2015, $8 million due in 2016 and $9 million due in 2017.

In contrast to the numbers given quarterbacks with much lesser value, it’s being reported that Brady is trusting that the team will spend the money that he could have made on reloading the roster with high-caliber talent to make his last years successful ones.

In the short-term, the Patriots will recover a significant amount of cap space.

Fans Taunt Soccer Star Mario Balotelli with Inflatable Bananas

International soccer star Mario Balotelli isn’t a stranger when it comes to controversy, but what he experienced this weekend is something no athlete deserves.

According to The Guardian, Balotelli was the target of racial abuse during the Milan derby. In the report fans were said to have chanted racist remarks throughout the game and sections of fans waved inflatable bananas every time Balotelli touched the ball.

The fans were supporters of Inter, Balotelli’s former club. Inter was fined 15,000 euros for chanting racist chants towards Balotelli in their previous match. Fans also threw bananas onto the field during that match.

The seriousness of these chants and antics seem to not be punished harshly enough if fans are allowed to continue badgering players with racial remarks.

Missouri's Sheldon Richardson believes he should be the No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft

Missouri's Sheldon Richardson is best known for his statement about Georgia playing "old man football". He later apologized to Bulldogs head coach Mark Richt after his Tigers were whacked by the Bulldogs.

Richardson doesn't lack confidence and speaks his mind whether it's right or wrong. There's nothing wrong with being confident but it'll set you up for a letdown if you're not careful.

The outspoken Richardson sounds cocky and confident as ever going into the NFL Draft. Richardson proclaimed himself the best player in the draft and that he should be the number one pick.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Why Chip Kelly Will Flourish With The Philadelphia Eagles

When Chip Kelly decided to become the Philadelphia Eagles head coach, he sent a shockwave through the NFL. Some experts praised the decision, while others had slightly less optimistic outlooks on the hire. Heath Evans, an NFL Network analyst, called the Chip Kelly hire, “one of the worst hires in pro football history,” while Tony Dungy, whose son play for Chip Kelly at Oregon, called it, “a great hire.” With such a wide spectrum of expert opinion on the hire, it is difficult to gauge how successful Chip Kelly actually will be with the Eagles. I think most Duck fans would agree that Chip Kelly will be successful in Philly, as it is nearly impossible for the average Duck fan to imagine Chip Kelly failing at anything. I believe he will immediately turn the Eagles fortunes around and silence his doubters.

Kansas State QB Collin Klein is being mentored by ex-Bronco Jake Plummer

The pre NFL draft process prepares the league’s new faces for their spotlight run.

A lot of times behind these kids are names from the ‘ whatever happened to?’ file.

In the case of Kansas quarterback Collin Klein, his mentor is former Broncos quarterback/enigma Jake Plummer.

Plummer who was both loved and hated by the Mile High faithful faded into retirement in lieu of playing for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers when he was traded in 2007.

He told the Denver Post that years of thought and experiences such as coaching high school football have led him to where he is now.

Should the Colts Cut Dwight Freeney?

No.

Thanks for joining us for this week's episode of "Common Sense and Sensibility"!  Tune in next week as we discuss wearing helmets, cups, and cleats!

Wait, I'm contractually obligated to write more?  Fine.

On Friday, during their annual shedding of beloved veteran players, the Colts announced that they would not be retaining the services of WR Austin Collie and DE (let's stop pretending) Dwight Freeney. If anyone was surprised by either of these moves, they've likely been in a coma. Or they are Dwight Freeney.

Before a series of concussions began the end of his career in 2010, Collie appeared ready to become the Colts long-term solution to the WR position, and his stats had put him among the game's best at the position.

My biggest hope for Collie is that he can get healthy and live a long, happy life with his family.

Is Revis Taking the Business Side of the NFL Too Personally?

Darrelle Revis was interview by Andrea Kremer yesterday on the NFL Network during NFL Total Access and there are two major reactions coming of Revis’ words.  The first camp is calling this no big deal, and that the quotes were made to seem bigger than they really were.  The other camp says that Revis should be quiet.

Revis’ main gripe in the interview was how he was speechless when the trade rumors came out of John Idzik’s first day as the New GM.  He said he didn’t receive a call from anyone in the organization.
The two most important takeaways from Darrelle Revis‘ interview with Andrea Kremer of the NFL Network:
1. The Jets’ star cornerback indicated he has talked to Rex Ryan since the trade rumors surfaced, and he said the coach wants him to remain a Jet. That’s more than Ryan gave us Jan. 24, the day of John Idzik’s introductory news conference, when everybody in the organization was in non-committal mode on Revis.
2. Revis is trying to paint owner Woody Johnson as the bad guy, suggesting Johnson doesn’t want to pay what he feels he’s worth. Make no mistake, there will be a lot of posturing from both sides as this story heats up over the next few weeks. via Cimi ESPN
I think Darrelle is taking this too personally.  Every single player on the Jets should not feel like they are safe, including Revis himself.  This is clearly an organization that has to do some major soul searching, and if there is a leak out there (which happens all the time to the Jets), you have to take a breath and let it play out.

Pittsburgh Steelers safety Ryan Clark tackles LaMarr Woodley drama

The Pittsburgh Steelers have never been a team that is soaked in drama. Yet this off-season there seems to be plenty of it.

Wide receiver Antonio Brown told the Steelers website last week that he is ready to be a leader. 

Within his comments he stated that he wants to lead by example.

“You have to do something to better yourself every day,” said Brown. “You have to take a step every day to be your best.

That comment sounds great but there are Steelers on the defensive side of the locker room that feel like outside linebacker LaMarr Woodley is miles away from feeling like Brown.

One of them spoke off-the-record to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazzette about Woodley on Sunday.

“He was awful,” the anonymous teammate said of Woodley’s 2012-13 performance.

“He tells us he works out, but we didn’t see it. He wasn’t in shape. That has to be a reason why he was always hurt.”

Tribute to Jerry Buss

Long time Lakers owner Jerry Buss died early Monday morning (February 18, 2013) from an undisclosed form of cancer.

Buss was arguably the greatest owner in sports, and certainly the greatest history in the NBA. In 1979 Jerry

Buss bought the LA Kings NHL franchise, The Forum, and the LA Lakers for 67.5 million dollars from Jack Kent Cooke. Buss would quickly sell the Kings and beginning building the Lakers into an NBA powerhouse.

In 1999 Jerry Buss moved the team to the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles, where we know the team today. Buss also brought the WNBA to LA with the Sparks and saw them win two championships before selling the team in 2006. Buss also owned a tennis team (Los Angeles Strings) and a soccer team (Los Angeles Lazers).

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Magic Johnson were one of the greatest duos of all-time under Jerry Buss (Courtesy wagesofwins.com)

In his 33 years with the team Buss has unparalleled success. Eighteen division titles, sixteen NBA Finals appearances, and ten NBA championships. He brought big names like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, James Worthy, Shaquille O’Neal, and Kobe Bryant to Los Angeles, not to mention bringing Phil Jackson to the City of Angels…

READ MORE

Junichi Tazawa could be the ace the Red Sox have been searching for

If you look closely to the Red Sox pitching staff you could find one hidden gem, without much fanfare.
26 year old Junichi Tazawa is now three years removed from Tommy John surgery, and maybe he is the ace the Sox have been searching for.

Back in 2007 Craig Shipley and Jon Dibble of the Red Sox were the first scouts to see Tazawa in an industrial league in Japan. One game  they saw him strike out 19 with no walks and throwing 95 consistently.

Boston signed the 22 year old Tazawa in the fall of 2008 and less than a year later, at age 23,  he was starting in Fenway.

Tazawa missed all of 2010 following surgery, and when he came back in 2011 his fastball was at 89-91.

In 2012 his velocity jumped up to 96-97, with a great split and slider.

Tazawa only pitched 44 innings in 2012 in Boston with 45 strikeouts. In Pawtucket last season he hurled 42.1 innings with 56 strikeouts. 91 strikeouts for 2012.

The Red Sox probably feel pressure to keep him in his middle inning role, mainly because Daniel Bard was such a failure at the same move last year.

But Tazawa is not Bard, his control separates him from any comparison.

Anyone that throws strikes all the time in the mid nineties, with two other dominate pitches, should be in the rotation if they are healthy.

When you step back and just look at the talent alone, Tazawa deserves a chance to be the ace of this rotation.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Evaluating the Jacksonville Jaguars 2012 Draft 1 year later

FIRST ROUND
Pick #5: Justin Blackmon WR, Oklahoma State

This pick was an example of need meeting best available.  Jacksonville has not had a lead receiver since Jimmy Smith.  Blackmon is a sgrong receiver with superior agility and leaping ability which allows him to be a lead reciever, despite lacking premier height.  He has great hands, with the strength to catch contested balls and take hits, while using his leaping ability to give the Jags a Red Zone target. 

It took him a few weeks to settle down after geting his first big check and find his place in the offense, but he showed everone why he was so highly regarded after he did.  He exploded onto the scene with a 236 yard day against the Houston Texans, which was the start of his averaging 88 yards over the last 7 games with 4 TD's over that stretch.  When you consider the state of the Jaguars offense, those numbers are a good sign.  They were not running the ball well, and he was, easily, the biggest threat at receiver, but he still put up good numbers.  If you extrapolate those stats out for a full season, you are looking at 1400+ yards and 9+TDs.  those are Pro Bowl numbers easily

Why it’s time to give Erik Spoelstra his due

Erik Spoelstra has been called a lot of different things during the past three seasons with the Miami Heat – lucky, bad, soon-to-be-fired and a lot of other names we can’t print on a family friendly site. But there’s one title that too often eludes the 42 year old head coach of  the Miami Heat – a great NBA coach, and perhaps it’s high time to start calling him one because, well, he’s pretty darn great.

It’s understandable how some view the coach as a franchise’s weak point when your on-court personnel includes one of the greatest players to ever set foot on the hardwood, a former Finals MVP and an eight-time NBA All-Star. However, Spoelstra’s done enough with rosters that range from fringe playoff contenders to an elite collection of players to justify his standing as one of the NBA’s better coaches.

Spoelstra has demonstrated versatility in his coaching, taking the reigns in 2008 and successfully integrating rookies Mario Chalmers and Michael Beasley into key parts of the Heat’s rotation.

The new-look Heat turned their 18-64 record in 2008 into 42-40 in the span of a mere season, Spoelstra’s first after taking over from Pat Riley. The return of Dwyane Wade, who played an additional 28 games the following season. However, a 34 game turnaround is a remarkable feat no matter how you view it and the Heat went from bottom of the East to the fifth seed in the matter of a season. The Miami Heat are yet to miss the Playoffs under the man they call ‘Spo’, bowing out in the first round for two straight years before the Big Three stormed South Beach.

I Am Football Fan, Hear Me Roar

Do you hear that?  That’s the sound of baseballs hitting the mitt as pitchers and catchers begin reporting to Spring Training.  How about that?  That’s basketball’s dribbling amidst 30+ meaningless NBA games prior to a month-and-a-half of equally meaningless playoff games en route to a repeat of last year’s Miami/Oklahoma City championship.  And that?  That’s me, and others like me, moaning and groaning, ruing the next 6 months minus the game which now dominates this country’s sports landscape.

The Super Bowl and the BCS Championship Game are behind us, recruiting is no more, and April’s NFL Draft lies somewhere on a horizon seemingly further away than a Barry Bonds Hall of Fame induction ceremony.  February and March are like a Football Purgatory full of torturous spectacles like Spring Training, half-assed professional basketball, and a once-great college roundball tournament which has been relegated to 68 teams consisting of relatively unknown players.  In addition, we get C+/B- golf tournaments, early season minor league…errr…MLS soccer, and something called NHL hockey (Your guess is as good as mine).

Ugh.

Don’t get me wrong; to an extent I’m just whining.  I can be entertained by a Major League Baseball game, will gamble on March Madness, and can tolerate a Timbers game with the help of an adult beverage or 6, but football has watered-down my excitement for all things not, and the “nots” have done the rest on their own.

Pat Summitt given New York Athletic Club Legends Award

University of Tennessee women’s head coach emeritus Pat Summitt was given the New York Athletic Club Winged Foot Legends’ Award on Tuesday.

“We are privileged that Coach Summitt has accepted our Legends’ Award,” James W. O’Brien, Chairman of the Winged Foot Award Committee, said in a news release. “If there is any coach who merits the title ‘legend,’ it is certainly she.”

Jeremy Lin: The Houston Rockets are building something special

Compared to the typhoon of attention that was devoted to him during the Linsanity era, Houston Rockets point guard Jeremy Lin has enjoyed a very quiet season thus far. 

He recently spoke with  KBME in Houston to clear the air on a variety on topics including the arrival of James Harden.

Lin was very optimistic on the Rocket’s chances going forward.

“I think as a team I would say that we’re happy with where we’re at, but we also know we’re capable of more, ” Lin said. “Right now we probably sit in the eighth seed of the playoffs, and prior to our seven-game slide that we had not too long ago, we were in the sixth seed. We’re happy we’re in the playoffs but we’re definitely not satisfied with that by any means. We feel like even though we are a young team, we have a lot of potential and we have a great opportunity to do something big this year, not just somewhere down the road.”

When the Rockets imported James Harden from the Oklahoma City Thunder, the expectation was that Lin would take something of an issue with sharing the spotlight.

Rob Ryan keeps up family tradition of oversell, under-deliver

Rob Ryan was fired by the Dallas Cowboys after a second consecutive 8-8 season, and after another year of his defense being incapable of holding onto a lead when handed to them. Of course, he considers himself a scapegoat and is (genuinely, I believe) shocked that Jerry Jones gave him the boot, according to Dan Hanzus of ESPN:
“Oh yeah, look, I was a little shocked,” Ryan told ESPNDallas.com after watching a Dallas Mavericks-Golden State Warriors game on Saturday night. “I knew they had to do something after an 8-8 season. They choose me to be the guy, sure.”
Translation: Jerry Jones was looking for a scapegoat and I was his choice.
“Better coaches than me have been fired,” Ryan said. “Just not many.”
Shortly after being fired, while on vacation with his wife, Ryan boasted he would have a job in “five minutes.” Now, we get this }not many coaches better than me” line.

Last week, Ryan was offered the St. Louis Rams job. Apparently, however, Jeff Fisher sobered up just in time to realize what a colossal mistake adding the flamboyant, over-cusser to his staff would be and withdrew the proposal, leaving Ryan still unemployed.

Why Tom Brady Has Won in His Last Super Bowl in New England

The Baltimore Ravens are your Super Bowl champions! I know, it’s a little late but I had to write last week in “tribute” to Ray Lewis. But with the Ravens holding the rights to call themselves Super Bowl champions until next February, the debate now begins. Who is the favorite to win in next year? The opening odds to win the 2014 Super Bowl have the Patriots at 6-1, Niners at 7-1, Broncos 8-1, Packers and Texans 10-1, Seahawks 12-1, Steelers and Ravens 14-1. Once again the Patriots are the opening favorites; last season they opened at 6-1 along with the Packers and Niners.

Two seasons ago, they opened at 7-1 along with the Packers. Three seasons ago, both the Patriots and Packers opened at 4-1. So, you get the point. Oddsmakers love the Patriots every single year. But why wouldn’t they? How could you bet against Tom Brady and Bill Belichick? In his career, Tom Brady has won over 77 percent of the regular season games he’s played. Every year, no matter who he’s throwing to, he has been excellent. The Patriots are the opening favorites, yet again; and yet again, I’m not buying it. In fact, I believe that Tom Brady will not win another Super Bowl with the Patriots.

Here’s why:

Jaguars QB Coach: Blaine Gabbert would be Top QB in this Draft Class


Blaine Gabbert has been the NFL for two full seasons now. While his on the field play hasn’t exactly turned heads, the Jaguars now have a new quarterbacks coach. Perhaps a new opportunity for Gabbert to get his skills set.

If you remember, Gabbert left Missouri a year early to enter the NFL draft. His new qb coach Frank Scelfo made it clear that if Gabbert had stayed in school and was coming out now, he would be the top quarterback in this draft.

The 20 Most Fascinating People in the Poker World

There's plenty of talent to choose from and as we've seen so often, success at the poker table is usually mirrored by success in other areas.

From astronaut-billionaires to childhood chess-prodigies this list gives a brief glimpse of the brilliant and unique characters that make up the poker community.

Keep reading to learn more about the 20 most fascinating people in poker and chime in using the comments to tell us who we forgot.

Steve Albini

If you were alive in the 1990s chances are you've heard Steve Albini's work, even if you've never heard his name.


"I like noise. I like big-ass vicious noise that makes my head spin." - Steve Albini
A musician and audio engineer with credits like Nirvana's In Utero and the Pixies Surfer Rosa on his résumé, Albini estimates he's worked on as many as 2,000 albums in his career.

And, contrary to the industry standard, he never charges royalties for his work.

Away from the studio Albini's passion is poker, specifically Seven-Card Stud and Razz.

He's published coaching videos on the subject on Cardrunners.com and narrowly missed a final table at the 2010 WSOP in a $1,500 Seven-Card Stud event.

Jeff Sarwer


Few can boast the kind of eclectic background that molded Jeff Sarwer into the man he is today.

At age four Sarwer learned chess and by the time he was six he had so impressed the manager of the
Manhattan Chess Club in New York he was granted a lifetime membership usually reserved for grandmasters.

At age eight he was a world champion.

"Jeff at nine is stronger than Bobby (Fischer) was at 11," said Allen Kaufman, head of the American Chess Foundation.

Sarwer's childhood was anything but conventional as his father home-schooled him and his sister and traveled across North America living anonymously to stay ahead of social services, who had once taken custody of both children.

Now Sarwer plays poker and has racked up $630,000 in earnings on the live tournament circuit.

Heather Sue Mercer

Heather Sue Mercer has cashes at the WSOP and WPT but it's her back-story that makes her one of poker's most fascinating people.


Heather Sue Mercer
In 1994 Mercer made history by earning a spot on Duke University's NCAA football team but was cut from the roster in 1996. Mercer sued the school for discrimination and in 2000 was awarded $2 million.

Mercer was an all-state placekicker in high school but according to the school, and six other Duke kickers who testified in court, she lacked the skills necessary for Division I football.

But the jury agreed with Mercer, ruling that her sex was the motivating factor in how she was treated.

Mercer now runs a bakery in New York City with her two sisters and plays poker in Atlantic City and Las Vegas.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Evaluating the 2012 KC Chiefs draft 1 year later

Well, the 2013 season has been over for a bit now, and it's time to look back.

We have heard all the stories about the QB's and the retiring linebackers and such.  Now, it's draft season, and it's time to look back at how the teams did in last years...while we wait for the combine so we can get serious talking about this year's.

I am going to do a Team by Team evaluation, starting with the worst records.

So, first up, the Kansas City Chiefs.

It is pretty obvious, and has been to most people watching, that the Chiefs had hitched their wagon to the wrong horses. 

The looked at the success of the Patriots franchise and decided to try and emulate it.  That's not the worst idea, but they did it by stealing the employees from the Pats, rather than by trying to emulate their concepts of drafting wisely with the future and the locker room in mind, while being flexible enough in scheme to be successful when conditions aren't in your favor.

No, instead of doing that, the Chiefs hired Scott Pioli away and then picked up Matt Cassel.  Cassel was Pioli's move, and he overpaid, forging a strong link between the GM's ego and Cassel's role as the starting QB.  Cassel, flat-out, has not gotten in done, and Pioli is out the door.

Another mistake that was made by the old regime, was the marrying of the Chiefs to the 3-4 scheme that the Patriots had success with in their early years.  What the Chiefs forgot to notice was that the Pats had success in that scheme because they had the players to run the scheme.  They had big, dominant, D-Linemen with smart, athletic, linebackers behind them who could play in all facets. 

The Chiefs did have some of the players, but they were never able to build the D-Line necessary to be dominant in the scheme. 

So, enough proselytizing about what Pioli and minions did wrong, let's look how his last draft as GM is looking a year later.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Noles Coach Fisher Looking For Ideal Fit For Next OC

In the past 39 days, the Florida State Seminoles defeated the Northern Illinois Huskies in the Orange Bowl, hired five new assistant coaches, put the wraps on the 2013 recruiting class, and got a start on the class of 2014. So you can forgive Jimbo Fisher for not yet finding a replacement for departed offensive coordinator James Coley, but that vacancy will be filled soon.

Fisher admits to Coley Harvey of the Orlando Sentinel that he needs this weekend to rest before interviewing candidates but he’ll begin the process next week, and he expects the eventual hire to work closely with Florida State’s passers. “Most likely, yes. It will be a quarterback guy,” Fisher said. “I would say there’s a high percentage of that.”

8 Geezers over 35 who still have their Giddy Up

Mike Trout and Bryce Harper led a rookie class in 2012 that could seriously go down as one of the best of all-time. It just seemed like everywhere you turned, someone barely old enough to drive a car was leading his team to a win. Throw them into an under-30 group of players that already included studs like Buster Posey, Andrew McCutchen, Ryan Braun, Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder, and many, many others, and the future of baseball, both real and fantasy, appears to be in phenomenal shape.

But there’s plenty of room in baseball for an old dog, and that’s what we’re going to take a look at here.

When we first decided to make this one of our countdown topics, two of the first names that jumped into my head were David Ortiz and Carlos Beltran. The problem is that I don’t trust that either will play more than 120 games in any given season. Alfonso Soriano was also one of the last men out. While I love his power numbers, remember that his 2012 batting average was as high as it was in any year since 2008. He came in at .262. Also, like Ortiz and Beltran, injuries are a concern.

Before I go on, the cutoff for qualifying on this list is that the player must turn 35 by June 30, 2013, or halfway through the season. So, the age you see listed will be how old he will be on that day. Get it? Got it?

Good! Let’s get to it!

1. Roy Halladay (36) — Pitcher, Philadelphia Phillies
The injury bug hit Doc in 2012, but he pitched healthy enough for me to believe that he still has quite a bit left in the tank. There’s a lot about Roy Halladay that I like, but if I had to pick one thing that makes him stand out, it’s this. He doesn’t walk anybody. Heck, as bad as 2012 was, his WHIP was still a respectable 1.22.

Doc led his league in strikeout-to-walk ratio every year from 2008-2011, and had the best BB:9 split between 2009-2011. Even from a pitcher in his mid-30?s, it’s going to take more than one up-and-down, injury plagued year to give up on him. Given the extraordinary shape that Halladay keeps himself in, there’s no reason to believe that he won’t bounce back in 2013, when health won’t be a concern.

2. Paul Konerko  (37) — First Baseman, Chicago White Sox
Injuries were a slight concern for Paul Konerko in 2012. Still, for a few reasons, I am not terribly concerned.
  1. He doesn’t play a particularly grueling position.
  2. In the American League, Konerko can always be moved to DH, where he’s played 35 or more games in each of the last two seasons.
  3. Konerko has played in 144 or more games in each of the last four seasons.
While we’re on that subject, let’s take a look at what he’s done since 2009.

75 runs, 31 homers, 95 RBI, all while hitting .297 over those seasons. I don’t see anything that tells me that he can’t come right around all of those numbers again in 2012.

Bill Walton Blast Ben Howland, Says UCLA Should Fire Him

UCLA head coach Ben Howland has had a rough go of it in Westwood.  With a highly touted recruiting class and star Shabazz Muhammad in the fold, things were supposed to be different.

Yesterday after barely beating Washington, the Bruins moved to 17-6 on the season.  That would be considered a good season some places, but in the land of John Wooden, it’s unacceptable.

One of the men who got Wooden some of those titles, Bill Walton, is not fond of Howland at all, and blasted Howland on the air as he was calling the game, suggesting UCLA should fire him according to USA Today.

Curt Schilling’s performance-enhancing drug accusations shot down by MLB

Former all-star pitcher Curt Schilling’s recent claim that he was told by the Boston Red Sox to use performance-enhancing drugs (PED) has been shot down by investigators. Major League Baseball and the Red Sox organization looked into the matter and found there was no substance to it. Schilling had said that Mike Reinold, a member of the Red Sox medical team, urged the pitcher to use PEDs to help treat a shoulder injury that he suffered back in 2008.

The accusations were recently made by Schilling to Terry Francona, who was the Red Sox manager at the time, as well as Theo Epstein, who was the club’s Theo Epstein in 2008. However, the investigations proved to be fruitless. Schilling had told Colin Cowherd of ESPN Radio that a member of the Red Sox medical staff suggested that he try taking the illegal substance as one way to help heal his damaged shoulder.

In later interviews, Schilling mentioned Reinold as the person who made the suggestion to him. Reinold was hired by the Red Sox in 2008 as the team’s rehabilitation coordinator. He remained with the club until leaving in 2012. However, according to investigators, Reinold has never been involved with PEDs in the past or the present and they feel the incident simply didn’t take place.

Frampton Comes Alive with ninth-round TKO over Kiko Martinez

Northern Ireland’s Carl Frampton won European Jr. Featherweight crown in his hometown of Belfast on Feb. 9 with a sensational ninth-round TKO over former champion Kiko Martinez of Spain. The 25-year-old challenger stopped the 26-year-old Martinez with one tremendous punch to send the crowd at the Odyssey Arena into a frenzy. It was the first time Martinez has been stopped and his first defeat in the past three years.

Frampton was ready for Martinez since he stepped up in class last September when he stopped former two-time world champion Steve Molitor of Canada in the sixth round. Molitor was a world-class fighter and this gave Frampton a lot of confidence heading into the bout with Martinez. With the win, he raised his unbeaten record to 16-0 with 11 Kos and has launched himself into a top contender in boxing’s 122 lb. weight division.

He’ll face a tough task though if he hopes to win a world title in the division since the current champions are Abner Mares, Guillermo Rigondeaux, and Nonito Donaire. With just 16 fights under his belt, Frampton still needs to take on some more top contenders before entering the ring against any of these three titleholders. Frampton took a step in the right direction with the TKO over Martinez, but he has to prove he can beat top boxers on a consistent basis.

Sonny Bill Williams beats Frans Botha amid new boxing controversy

Wherever boxing goes controversy is sure to follow. This time it was down in Brisbane, Australia where rugby star Sonny Bill Williams of New Zealand took on aging heavyweight Frans Botha of South Africa. The 44-year-old Botha has a wealth of experience, but was fighting a 27-year-old novice, which evened things out in the eyes of many fans. The Feb. 8 bout was billed as the WBA Intercontinental Heavyweight Championship, but somebody might have forgotten to inform the WBA about it since nobody from the boxing organization bothered to show up.

However, that wasn’t the major talking point after the fight. The contest was also advertised as a 12-round bout, but somebody changed it to 10 rounds without telling the broadcasters, judges and even Botha himself. Williams was ahead on points heading into the 10th round, but Botha, suddenly realizing it was his last chance at victory, went on the attack and had him out on his feet at the end of the round.

The fight was stopped at this point and the scorecards were added up. Williams was announced the winner by tallies of  98-94, 97-91, and 97-91. The victory saw him raise his record to 6-0 with 3 Kos while Botha dropped to 48-9-3 with 29 Kos. Botha was furious after the fight and claimed that he had no idea the bout had been changed from 12 to 10 rounds. However, his promoter apparently agreed to the change and didn’t inform him of it.
Botha said the whole thing was a farce and some people agreed with him, mainly the WBA and local bookmakers. Some of the betting shops refunded wagers on Botha and also gave bettors their money back if they had predicted the round the fight would end. Alan Moore, who was one of the judges, said the first time he heard about the change in length was when the ring announcer informed the crowd over the arena’s speaker system before the 10th round that it would in fact be the last round.

Vancouver MMA Brand Proves Worthy


PRESS RELEASE
Reign Full Contact, founded in 2009 in the Western Canadian province of British Columbia, has become a Canada-Wide success story. In 4 short years, Reign is now available in select retailers Canada-wide and is about to be distributed across Europe.

With a background in martial arts of over 50 years collectively, the three owners knew the industry standards could be improved and knew just how to do it. In 2009, Reign worked with some of Western Canada’s best professional fighters and trainers at John Punt’s renowned Impact MMA in Nanaimo, B.C.

From there, Reign acquired crucial firsthand feedback on their products and the development process began.

Condoleeza Rice Leaves Fan Bloody After A Golf Shot Gone Wrong At Pebble Beach


Condoleeza Rice made history a few months ago when she became the first woman to be allowed membership into Augusta National. Now she’s making news in the golf world for a completely different reasons.

The LA Times has reported that the former secretary of State was golfing at this year’s Pebble Beach pro-am when she hit a wayward shot in the sixth hole  on Thursday during the first round. The shot went into another fairway striking a spectator in the face leaving her with a bloody cut which needed medical attention, and she was left with concussion-like symptoms.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Former Cy Young winner Chris Carpenter may be forced to retire

Former Cy Young and two-time World Series champion winner Chris Carpenter may have to retire due to nerve damage in his hand. The 37-year-old St. Louis Cardinal pitcher is almost certain to miss the upcoming 2013 MLB season and he may not be able to return to the mound at all. John Mozeliak, the Cardinals’ general manager, said Carpenter is still suffering from the same problem that saw him miss the majority of last season, but he hasn’t retired and will also be seeking additional medical opinions.

However, according to Mozeliak the future doesn’t look too bright for the star pitcher and feels that it’s unlikely he’ll return. Carpenter’s started his career with the Toronto Blue Jays back in 1997 and he has a career record of 144-94 along with an ERA of 3.76. He left the Blue Jays after six seasons and has spent nine more with the Cardinals. Carpenter had an excellent season in 2005 by going 21-5 with an ERA of 2.83 and that performance earned him the Cy Young Award. He almost won the honor a second time after a 17-4 season in 2009 with an ERA of 2.24, but came in second place in the voting.

Carpenter has pitched just as well in the postseason by starting 18 games for St. Louis and posting a record of 10-4 with an ERA of 3.00. He pitched in game seven of the 2011 World Series on three days’ rest against the Texas Rangers and earned the win. But even though Carpenter’s numbers have been exceptional, they could have been even better if he hadn’t suffered so many injuries to his elbow and shoulder.

Sue Paterno Defends Husband As Moral, Disciplined Man


Sue Paterno, the widow of former Penn State coach Joe Paterno, has broken her year of silence in a letter addressed to former Penn State players defending her husband against allegations following the Sandusky Scandal.
“I knew Joe Paterno as well as one human being can know another. Joe was exactly the moral, disciplined and demanding man you knew him to be,” Sue Paterno wrote. “Over the years I watched as he struggled with countless personal and professional challenges. Never – not once – did I see him compromise his principles or twist the truth to avoid bad publicity or protect his reputation.”
“The great fathers, husbands and citizens you have become fulfill the dreams Joe had,” she wrote to the former players. “All that we want – and what I believe we owe the victims, Joe Paterno and everyone who cares about Penn State – is the full record of what happened.”
Sue Paterno, wrote the letter as a response to former FBI director Louis Feech, who accused Joe Paterno and university officials of covering up the allegations against Sandusky.
“When the

Florida Gators A Mess At Quarterback.

Florida’s No. 2-rated signing class addressed pretty much all of the Gators’ major needs.

They added much-needed-help at receiver, linebacker and defensive tackle, plus improved their depth at offensive line and in the secondary.

But as good as the class is, UF missed out on one important piece — getting an experienced quarterback on board to back up starter Jeff Driskel.

When Jacoby Brissett transferred, it left UF without any backup quarterbacks who have thrown a pass in a game. That’s why the Gators made a late push for Tanner McEvoy, a former South Carolina signee who has been playing at Arizona Western College. But McEvoy chose Wisconsin, and now the Gators are in a tenuous spot.

Bama Signee Reuben Foster’s Father Arrested After 16 Years on the Run For Shooting Wife


Reuben Foster has to be the most interesting High School Football player of all time. First, he gets a massive Auburn tattoo to show his commitment to the Tigers.

After a coaching change, he decided he prefers to go to Auburn biggest rival Alabama. He dresses up as Nick Saban on signing day and now this.
Authorities say a man who was arrested after spending 16 years on the run for allegedly shooting his estranged wife while she was holding their 18-month-old boy is the father of Alabama football signee Reuben Foster.
Danny Foster was originally arrested in Randolph County, Ala., after the shooting, which the woman survived. A young Reuben was wounded in the back.
Foster was originally arrested, but escape from prison and had been living under a false identity in Miami for 16 years.  Can’t wait until this story is on Discovery ID.

Be sure to check out other great articles at BlackSportsOnline.

Gators CB Purifoy is 13th Gator Cited For Marijuana

Florida cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy was arrested early Sunday morning and charged with misdemeanor possession of marijuana, making him the seventh member of the Gators arrested for marijuana over the past 25 months.

“Coach Muschamp is aware of the incident and is handling it,” UF spokesman Steve McClain said.

In addition to Purifoy, cornerback Janoris Jenkins (twice), linebacker Chris Martin, defensive lineman Kedric Johnson, safety De’Ante Saunders, defensive tackle Leon Orr and defensive tackleJafar Mann have also been arrested for marijuana possession since coach Will Muschamp took over for Urban Meyer in January 2011.

Muschamp dismissed Jenkins from the team after his second arrest, while Martin, Saunders and Mann eventually left the program.

National Signing Day Winners and Losers


Just as on any given fall Saturday, there are clear winners and losers on national signing day. You know that team elated over its five-star recruit? While one coaching staff is overjoyed, another dozen-plus are devastated over its inability to seal the deal with one of the nation’s best prospects.

WINNERS:

BOle Miss was the story of the day, one that began with defensive end Robert Nkemdiche, the nation’s top recruit, choosing the Rebels over offers from nearly every power in college football. The day continued with another pair of five-star prospects, wide receiver Laquon Treadwell and offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil. By the afternoon, Ole Miss had one of the nation’s 10 best classes. Not bad for a school that failed to win an SEC game from Oct. 2, 2010, through Oct. 13, 2012.

Texas A and M (No. 10): The Aggies made only one big splash on Wednesday, pulling defensive end Daeshon Hall, a longtime Washington commit, away from the Huskies. Texas A&M made its day long before Wednesday, using a strong recruiting effort and its newfound SEC credentials to bring in 16 four-star recruits, according to Rivals.com. Among those prospects are a slew of wide receivers, giving Johnny Manziel even more toys to play with on offense.

Auburn (No. 11): Gus Malzahn hired a star-studded staff, but it wasn’t until the last 10 days that the rest of the SEC saw just what Auburn’s new assistants could do on the recruiting trail. The Tigers closed with a flash, sealing up the commitment of five-star defensive end Carl Lawson and adding fellow linemen Elijah Daniel – a flip from Ole Miss – and Montravius Adams. What can Malzahn and this staff achieve over the next 12 months?

Clemson (No. 14): Dabo Swinney and his staff failed to pull in one of four premier defensive line recruits, including Nkemdiche – who was once verbally committed to Clemson – but were able to land an elite defensive prospect in five-star cornerback Mackensie Alexander. “It’s been a great day for us,” Swinney told ESPN. “Today’s just another step in the direction we’re going to take this program.” Clemson’s class also touched the map: Swinney signed players from the Southeast, of course, but also players from Brooklyn, N.Y., and Hawaii.

Ohio State (No. 2): The Buckeyes followed up a 12-0 record in Urban Meyer’s first season with one of the nation’s top three classes. Meyer’s best signing day coup was Vonn Bell, a five-star safety from Tennessee who chose the Buckeyes over the in-state Volunteers. In the week leading up to signing day, OSU also took running Dontre Wilson away from Oregon and nabbed running back Ezekiel Elliott out of Missouri.

Friday, February 8, 2013

David Stern Says Seattle Group To Purchase the Kings Has Filed For Relocation

They are wasting no time here…

The Seattle-based investment group that recently reached an agreement to purchase the Sacramento Kings has begun taking steps toward moving the franchise back to Washington State.
The Associated Press has reported that NBA Commissioner David Stern announced Wednesday that committees have been formed to look at the proposed sale and move of the franchise.

The relocation proposal states that the team will play in Key Arena, former home to the SuperSonics, for a few years while a new area is being built.
“We have had submitted a signed agreement to have the team sold to a very strong group from Seattle,” Stern said. “We have received an application to have the team moved from Sacramento to Seattle.”
The proposed move to Seattle is no surprise to anyone. It has always been the intent of the investment group that agreed to purchase the Kings to return an NBA franchise to the city after losing the former Sonics (now Thunder) to Oklahoma City.

Dennis Dixon speculation continues for Eagles fans...

The Eagles are talking contract with QB Dennis Dixon...but that really doesn't mean anything more than he could be invited to mini-camps and training camp as an extra arm.

Or it could be a glimpse of the vision Chip Kelly has for the style of multi-faceted quarterback he wants running his offense.

How quickly we do forget: Dixon actually played very well in the few games he did start for Pittsburgh. He passed effectively from the pocket on more than a few plays, he threw well on the run, and he executed some very nice designed runs.

The Eagles and quarterback Dennis Dixon, who is currently a practice squad player with the Baltimore Ravens, are discussing the possibility of Dixon's reuniting with his former coach. This per a report from Geoff Mosher of CSNPhilly.com, who says both sides are talking, but nothing is imminent.

Dixon coming to Philadelphia to play for Kelly has long been rumored. Kelly's bringing in a quarterback who knows the system he ran at Oregon makes some sense. When Andy Reid was first hired by the Eagles he signed Doug Pederson, a quarterback who knew his offense. But Dixon has a much higher talent level than Pederson, no offense intended to Doug.

Dixon was one of the best quarterbacks in college football under Kelly during his time in Oregon. Dixon passed for 2,719 yard while rushing for 583 yards in 10 games before tearing his ACL in his last season with the Ducks (2007).

I remember Dixon as Ben Roethisberger's backup along with Charlie Batch and Byron Leftwich. He played lights out against the Falcons and the Ravens. Dixon started the first two games of the 2010 season when Roethlisberger was suspended, so teams around the league have seen what he can do.

NY Mets Owners Want To Build Casino Next To The Stadium


According to the NY Post the NY Mets owners Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz are seriously considering building a ‘Las Vegas’ style casino right next to CitiField to recoup money lost from the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme they were victims of.

The Mets development company Sterling Equities are bidding for a proposal to construct a 1.8 million square foot casino/hotel right next to where the Mets call home.

The owners have gotten the Shinnecock Indian Nation to sign on to operate the casino and have offered $100 million for the land needed to build on.  Their plans were first submitted in 2011, while the Wilpons were still reeling from their billions lost from Madoff, and were forced to take a loan from MLB to keep the team afloat.

Since then the loan has been paid off and the plans to continue to pursuit is back on. The proposal is still waiting approval, despite some outcry from the city opposing it.

Be sure to check out other great articles at BlackSportsOnline.

Fox Sports Gus Johnson to Lend his Voice to 2018 World Cup


Gus Johnson has made a name for himself in commentary over the last couple of decades most notably in college basketball’s March Madness tournament from 1996-2011. You might recognize him as the exuberant, enthusiastic, exciting guy calling most of the key moments during those games. He has made popular the phrases ”Oh my goodness!”, “Rise and fire… Count it!”, “Here comes the pain!”, “From the parking lot!”, “And the Runner….Bang!”, “Pure!”, “BAM!”, “Cold-Blooded!”, “What a game!”, and “HA-HAAA”

Aaron Rodgers will be paying Close Attention to Joe Flacco’s New Deal


 Green bay quarterback and MVP Aaron Rodgers is entering the final two years of his current contract. A contract set to expire after the 2014 NFL season concludes. Widely recognized as one of the best quarterbacks playing, Rodgers will be looking to cash in on his MVP and Super Bowl championship soon.

With Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco set to sign a new mega-deal soon, it appears Rodgers has a close eye on what numbers Joe Flacco will be able to secure. According to ESPN Wisconsin.
Per 540 ESPN and ESPNWisconsin.com: ”I think everybody is going to see what Joe (Flacco) ends up signing for,” Rodgers said.
I’m sure they want to lock him up. He’s a great player – had an incredible run in the playoffs – and I’m sure they want to keep him around. A guy like that, with the post-season success he’s had, you want to keep a guy like that around for a while.”

Giants Release RB Ahmad Bradshaw and Defensive Tackle Chris Canty


The New York Giants are well on their way to having a very interesting off-season.

According to Pro Football talk, the Giants have released running back Ahamd Bradshaw. Bradshaw was due to make $3.75 million in 2013 and $4 million in 2014. Bradshaw only made it two years in to his 4 yr/18 million/9 million guaranteed contract. Bradshaw has had multiple foot surgeries, the most recent one happening in January.

Jenny Ventras, of the Star-Ledger also reported that defensive tackle Chris Canty has been released. Canty was due to make $6.25 million in 2013 and $6.5 million in 2014.

By releasing Michael Boley, Ahmad Bradshaw and Chris Canty the Giants have cleared up $13.75 million in cap space. This cap space will likely be used to sign many of their own free agents, including saftey Kenny Phillips, offensive tackle Will Beatty, offensive guard Kevin Boothe, and running back Andre Brown.

Jay Cutler, Last of the Neanderthals, Mailed Engagement Ring To Kristin Cavallari


We interrupt Ray Rice falling off of a parade float and the rest of the world champion Baltimore Ravens partying like Pitbull to bring you news on loathsome Jay Cutler.

Earlier this week, Cutler was voted as one of the most disliked athlete in sports, which is somewhat astonishing. Considering how hard one has to work to rub shoulders with Tiger Woods, Lance Armstrong, and Manti Te’o, Cutler’s scowl finally annoyed America in unison.

Now comes the tale of how Cutler got engaged (for a second time) to soon-to-be wife Kristin Cavallari.
The former Hills star told E! Online about Cutler’s proposal:
“It was so silly. I was in the airport, leaving Chicago. We had just spent however many days together and we were texting and somehow it came up, like, ‘Oh, shall we get married?’ We’re like, ‘Yeah, OK.’ And then he sent my ring in the mail. So I actually had my ring sitting at home for a couple of weeks before I put it on.”

Raiders To Drop Seating Capacity To Avoid TV Blackouts Due To Low Attendance


 No matter how good times may be for the NFL as a whole, there are teams that are still struggling–by NFL standards, of course. One of the teams in question are the Oakland Raiders, who are being force to drop seat capacity.

NFL.com broke the news on the somewhat embarrassing story from Oakland. The organization  has labeled the move as ‘capacity adjustment’ as they are now blocking 28 sections from the upper deck from sections 335 to 355, the area known as ‘Mount Davis’.

Harbaugh, 49ers Will Not Let Alex Smith Decide His Own Fate This Offseason

Two days after losing the Super Bowl and blaming the referees, 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh said all the right things, blaming himself and the play-calling. He also mentioned the future of Alex Smith, the now high-priced back-up quarterback that likely wants nothing more than a fresh start in a new uniform.
Whether or not Smith gets that fresh start with another team will not be up to him, though, as Harbaugh stated on Tuesday.

            “I don’t think any player has those wishes granted when they’re under contract,” Harbaugh said via San Francisco Chronicle’s Eric Branch. “And everything’s different. Every scenario is unique. It’s certainly not something we’re going to delve into and get into specifics.”

            ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the 49ers are going to shop Smith to teams this offseason, and Schefter also reported that teams are already lining up for Smith’s services.

            However, there may be a wrench thrown in the reported plans of Smith. The 49ers actually may keep him as their back-up quarterback next season.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Joe Montana Says Randy Moss Can’t Do All The Things Jerry Rice could do

Randy Moss caused a stir when he took over Super Bowl media with the comments that he’s the greatest wide receiver to ever play the game. 
\
Jerry Rice, who many consider to be the GOAT, took exception to those comments and calmly disagreed.

Now the guy who threw so many touchdown passes to Rice has an opinion of his own.

Joe Montana appeared on Pro Football Talk, and in his opinion, “Moss couldn’t do all the things that Rice could.”

One and done end to PED’s in baseball

The names are easy to remember Gio, Nelson, ARod, and Braun. They are linked together it what has become the Watergate of baseball “The Anthony Bosch’s notebooks.”

Now is the time for Bud Selig to act like a real baseball commissioner.The other three that were implicated:

Melky Cabrera, Bartolo Colon and Yasmani Grandal all took their punishment and each served a 50 games suspension.

Use the power of your position you need to suspend Alex Rodriguez, Nelson Cruz, Gio Gonzalez, and Ryan Braun for the first 50 games of the 2013 season.

Then tell the world that baseball is done with wimpy suspensions.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

New report reveals 680 pro soccer games were fixed

The sport of soccer was given another black eye on Feb. 4 when investigators announced that at least 680 games were affected by match fixing. The report, which took 19 months to put together, states that criminal groups have been able to fix the elite level of international and European soccer with hundreds of people being involved.

The investigation revealed that more than 15 different countries have had games fixed and a minimum of 425 people have been involved in the illegal activities. These include former and current players as well as club officials and referees. It was reported that the criminal groups are mainly Asian with Singapore being a hotbed of illegal fixing. These syndicated have made many millions of dollars by wagering on results that have been manipulated across the world.

Some of the elite games that have been infiltrated include European Championship and World Cup qualifying contests along with a pair of European Champions League showdowns. At least one of these games took place in England, where it’s generally believed the nation is immune to illegal match fixing. The director of Europol, which helped operate the investigation, said it’s definitely a sad day for the sport of soccer.

MLB: As A-Rod’s alleged doping pattern is revealed, MLB turns up heat

(PhatzRadio / SI) — The notebooks reported to belong to Florida wellness clinician Tony Bosch connect New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez to a staggering array of drugs and supplements to be used literally morning, noon and night and through multiple delivery systems, including lozenges, creams and injections. Those notes, parts of which the Miami New Times have published online, provide the road map Major League Baseball investigators have begun to follow.

A contingent of MLB officials met in Miami on Monday with New Times staff members to learn more about the notebooks, how they were acquired, the names of other players not named in the report and the possibility of the New Times turning over those documents.

Investigators also intend to follow Bosch’s notes to see if they lead to corroborating evidence, such as receipts for plane trips and overnight packages, according to a source close to the investigation. The source said investigators also are tracking packages tied to Juan Nunez, a player confidante who formerly worked for agents Sam and Seth Levinson and who was a co-conspirator with Melky Cabrera of a web site scam staged after a failed drug test by Cabrera last year.

New Times editor Chuck Strouse confirmed MLB officials asked for the notebooks and logs but that the publication had not yet decided about how to respond to the request. “We are deliberating,” he said.

Strouse said the publication has received only one response from legal representatives of any of the named persons in the report — and that was what he termed an “aggressive letter” questioning whether the report violated federal HIPAA laws, which are designed to protect patient privacy under care of health care providers.

Rob Gronkowski is catching heat from local media

The events surrounding the Super Bowl may be the worst thing for New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski.

For each of the past two years he has been injured in or around the big game.

And for each of the past two years he has risked further injury by partying a bit to hard during post-game festivities.

The Patriots could not have been delighted to catch a screening of the TMZ video of him wrestling in a nightclub and landing on the same forearm that he injured twice this NFL season.

The local media certainly is not as Boston Herald writer Karen Guregian more or less put it out there that its time for him to calm down.

Kentucky Basketball finally growing into their roles

Not too long ago, I wrote an article about how Kentucky was shaping up to be an NIT team.  At the time, it was a perfectly legitimate argument.  The Wildcats had just lost on their home court to a mediocre Texas A&M team and were a measly 0-4 against teams in the RPI top 50.  Their team was, in a word, dysfunctional, going through the growing pains that come with playing several freshmen.  That’s how John Calipari’s teams were built—on talented freshmen, and up until then, it had been like clockwork.  No one had ever questioned it, because it didn’t need to be questioned, we were used to seeing frosh studs like Derrick Rose, Tyreke Evans, Anthony Davis, John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins do the unimaginable.  But this season the freshman under Calipari had been inconsistent and there wasn’t enough experience to balance it out.  As the losses began to pile up, so did the doubt for Kentucky.

However, as quickly as the doubt came, it is beginning to fade.  Since I wrote that article, Kentucky has gone 5-1, and picked up their best win of the season along the way—a road win at Mississippi.  They then went and beat the same Texas A&M team they lost to on the road, in overtime.  Three weeks ago, the Wildcats lacked the mental fortitude to win either of those games.  They likely would have folded to the pressure of a raucous environment on the road.  But they didn’t.

Clearly, this team is starting to get it.  The pieces are starting to align and they are beginning to reach the apex of their potential.  They are finding their groove.  Part of the reason they find themselves in the midst of a three-way tie for second place in the SEC.  The freshmen are maturing, the few veterans are emerging, and most importantly, the ‘Cats are winning.  Still, they aren’t quite there yet, and there have been slip ups, like the Alabama loss, but they are improving.
 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Eric Dickerson rips Hall of Fame for excluding New York Giants Michael Strahan

Odds are like most sensible folks you were shocked to find out that  former New York Giants defensive end Michael Strahan did not receive the honor of  becoming a first-ballot Hall of Fame entry.

The presumed diss by the sportswriters that decide who is allowed entry into the Hall of Fame immediately rocked those that follow the NFL.

On Saturday, it was bigger news than Adrian Peterson edging out Peyton Manning for the prestigious MVP award.

Legendary running back Eric Dickerson has never been one to keep his opinions to himself.