Friday, July 31, 2009
The New York Knicks have been awarded exclusive rights to negotiate with veteran guard Jason Williams through Aug. 6 after putting in a waiver claim Friday, according to NBA front-office sources.
All 30 teams were notified Friday that the Knicks will have five business days, until next Thursday, to offer Williams a contract. Without an offer in that time frame that meets league guidelines, Williams would then become an unrestricted free agent.
Interesting. Very interesting. I actually had a feeling this would happen.
Jason Williams was out of basketball last year but can still probably play. Still, I don't think Donnie Walsh really wants to sign him. J-Will is more of a safety net in case the Knicks can't get a handle on Ramon Sessions.
Speaking of Sessions:
There were strong indications Thursday night that the New York Knicks were assembling the final details of an offer sheet they believe will ultimately land Milwaukee Bucks restricted free agent Ramon Sessions.
...One trusted source insists that the Knicks believe they can extend Sessions far enough to dissuade Milwaukee from matching but without affecting their well-chronicled strategy to leave enough salary-cap space to recruit one maximum-salaried free agent in the summer of 2010. An offer sheet to a restricted free agent must be for at least two years, but it remains unclear how much of New York's $5.9 million mid-level exception Sessions would receive.
That's an idea. A good one at that. I'd love for Ramon Sessions to be in New York for epochs. He's going to be really, really good. Can't say great, but really, really good.
After a couple of weeks of bashing Donnie Walsh, I'd love to give him some props for doing something smart. Hey Donnie, have you tried this tactic with David Lee?
I've laid out my desire for Sessions as the Knicks point guard quite well. This only supports me.
--By the way, Mike Taylor was released by the LA Clippers. Knicks fans know who this fella is. He absolutely ravaged the Knicks at the Garden on March 25. The 23-year old point guard rattled off 35 points and 8 rebounds in 37 minutes. He's not even close to what Ramon Sessions is, but maybe as insurance going into next year, Taylor could get a spot as the reserve point guard on the Knicks roster.
Hear Terez every Friday at 2:15pm EST on WCWP Sports
Follow us on Twitter.
Check out Terez Owens for the latest in sports gossip.
From Joel Sherman:
The Yankees have obtained Jerry Hairston from the Reds, The Post has learned.
Hairston is a righty batter who plays all over and ios hitting .254 this year with eight homers.
Well, I guess Shelley Duncan isn't coming up to the roster. Another utility player off the bench. Good deal for the Yanks.
Let's see what they give up. Anything but Pat Venditte should be alright.
UPDATE: Ken Davidoff wrote on Twitter:
Yankees give up minor-league C Chase Weems (at Charleston) for Hairston.
Through 55 games in Charleston, Weems is .260/.317/.347 with 1 HR and 14 RBIs.
Tweeting from vaca bc things are getting hot: Told Knix-Iverson has "no chance"...Sessions is the target.
Hahn refutes this reports by Yahoo Sports.
Well that's good to hear. Ramon Sessions has to be the main focus for the New York Knicks right now (along with locking up David Lee). Sessions is 23, fast, crafty and can dish and finish. The perfect player for the Mike D'Antoni Knicks.
Not only would Sessions be the point guard of the future (4 years, $26 mil would be the deal), but he'd likely rise to the top ten in the league at his position. That'll attract the big free agents next summer. All of the off-ball players due to be available then would love to play with an orchestrator like Sessions.
Not to mention, there are no better (or cheaper) point guard options coming out in the next two years. Tony Parker would be the name in 2011. NY doesn't have a draft pick in next year's draft so they'll have to ink someone. Ramon Sessions fits. He's the best choice over Jamaal Tinsley, Jason Williams or Allen Iverson.
Now if Sessions can't be had, Iverson is the next best option. For 1 year, Allen Iverson would bring some publicity to the Knicks. The downside is that he won't draw LeBron James, Dwyane Wade or Chris (Barsh) Bosh next year. Leave that to Danilo Gallinari.
Jets running back Leon Washington's holdout lasted all of one day. Actually, it was less.
Washington, who is unhappy with his contract, reported to camp late Thursday night but he doesn't have the new deal he's seeking, according to a person with knowledge of the contract talks who spoke anonymously because he's not authorized to speak publicly.
It was believed that the two sides were close but talks have apparently hit a snag. It's unclear if the Washington camp has simply decided to put off talks and play or continue to negotiate.
Washington, who is earning $535,000 this season under his current contract, was to be fined $17,000 for each day out of camp.
I'll tell you exactly why Leon Washington decided to report. 17 grand isn't a drop in the bucket. Once he saw that, he hopped the first Greyhound to Cortland.
But the thought of Washington cutting off all negotiations with the Jets is scary. Don't let it happen, Tannenbaum!
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz, the sluggers who propelled the Boston Red Sox to end an 86-year World Series championship drought and to capture another title three years later, were among the roughly 100 Major League Baseball players to test positive for performance-enhancing drugs in 2003, according to lawyers with knowledge of the results.
Some of baseball’s most cherished storylines of the past decade have been tainted by performance-enhancing drugs, including the accomplishments of record-setting home run hitters and dominating pitchers. Now, players with Boston’s championship teams of 2004 and 2007 have also been linked to doping.
...and suck it, Boston.
With the Boston Red Sox World Series wins (2004 in particular) being such great stories, do we, as MLB's fan base, look upon them as tainted?
We all know the the vast majority of this era has been unclean. But with certain things, it's in the back of our minds. When it was discovered that Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and eventually Barry Bonds all broke the Roger Maris' single-season homerun record, most conceded that Maris was still the rightful holder. Even if Bonds shattered it and 73 homeruns is tops in the record book, a lot of people have a tough time admitting that the true homerun king is Roger Maris.
It's the same situation with Bonds and Hank Aaron's homerun record.
Unlike the homerun records, Boston's epic drought of world championships was not sacred. It was truly a great story when it happened (regardless of what happened in the ALCS). A great deal of people saw relief and witnessed great history when Boston won.
Also, the greatest place in the universe, New York, is Boston's biggest rival. Anything New York does is viewed as gluttonous, while everything Boston does comes off as cerebral and strategic. That bias will put the Red Sox in a better light.
Couple those things with 'Manny being Manny' and no one will really care about anybody on that team taking performance enhancers.
Just watch how this unfolds.
We turned on Steph's live stream for about 15 seconds on Tuesday during 'The Sportswire', and he was listening to this song. No joke.
Oh, by the way, Starbury is set to see a psychiatrist tomorrow.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
The Pittsburgh Pirates have dealt shortstop Jack Wilson and right-handed pitcher Ian Snell to the Seattle Mariners for shortstop Ronny Cedeno, first baseman Jeff Clement, and right-handed pitching prospects Aaron Pribanic, Brett Lorin and Nathan Adcock, the Pirates announced Wednesday.
That means the Mariners are buyers -- or at least they think they are. Now that Seattle has Ian Snell and Jack Wilson, they will be less likely to deal Jarrod Washburn, who has been rumored to go to the Yankees. So in one swift move, the Yanks miss out on two possible fits for their rotation.
New York, in need of a back-end starter, could still land Bronson Arroyo from Cincinnati.
From Rich Cimini:
With training camp set to open Friday morning (vets report Thursday), the Jets are trying to hammer out a contract extension for RB Leon Washington. You already knew that. But here's the latest: Washington's Virginia-based agent, Alvin Keels, is coming up tomorrow to have a face-to-face with GM Mike Tannenbaum.
A lot of times, when an agent flies into town, it means they're ready to put the finishing touches on a deal. I wouldn't read that much into this situation. It also could mean this is a last-ditch effort by both sides to get something done before camp. As you know, Washington is threatening a camp holdout.
Let's hope this gets out of the way soon. Rex Ryan doesn't need to begin his tenure with his most explosive offensive and special teams weapon threatening to leave.
I think we can all agree that Leon Washington is worth the money he's asking for, so I don't know why he wasn't signed yesterday, let alone two months ago.
No matter what comes of this meeting, the Jets and Washington are making progress. Someone should send that memo to the Knicks and David Lee...
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Jordan Lauterbach will be LIVE Wednesday at 1pm on wcwpsports.com.
On the agenda:
The Mets recent surge, Omar Minaya and the on-going front office circus, Yankees/Rays reaction, Trade Deadline talk, Brett Favre retirement thoughts,Phil Mickelson returning to the PGA tour, and Tiger Woods' all out blitz for the PGA Championship.
It all starts at 1pm. Only on wcwpsports.com
Phil Mickelson will return to the PGA Tour at the Bridgestone Invitational next week, his first tournament since he tied for second at the U.S. Open.
Mickelson has been away for nearly two months because his wife, Amy, has breast cancer. She had surgery July 1. At about that time, Mickelson learned his mother has breast cancer and is being treated.
Mickelson’s decision was announced Tuesday by tournament organizers and suggests he also will play the following week in the PGA Championship at Hazeltine. Bridgestone is the third of the four World Golf Championship events of 2009.
The article goes on to say that Tiger Woods is expected to commit to the Bridgestone later this week.
I have to say, I'm pleasantly surprised by the Mickleson news. If for nothing else but precautionary reasons, I did not think we would see Phil for the remainder of the season. Hopefully this means that his wife and mother are doing well in their battles with cancer. Having had first hand experience with relatives battling this disease, I understand the extreme mental and physical tole it can take on everyone involved.
The Phil story doesn't end with sentimental value either. The last time we saw Mickelson, he was in heavy contention for a major championship at Bethpage Black. So on top of seeing Phil play at all,its perfectly feasible to expect him to play well. Maybe it won't come at the Bridgestone, but don't be surprised to see him in serious contention at the PGA. Remember, his almost-perfect showing at the U.S Open came after a very average weekend at the St Judes....
...The other interesting nugget from today involves Tiger. He was a bit of a surprise entry in this weeks Buick Open field. If he indeed commits to the Bridgestone, he will be playing three consecutive weeks. It would also be the first time this season that Tiger will be playing the weekend before a major championship. I'd imagine that this stems from the fact that Tiger has been a non-factor by 3pm on any of the last three major Sundays. In the case of the missed cut at the British, he was not only a non-factor, but a non-player as well. He's looking to turn his luck around by not taking that "prep-week" before a major.
This says to me that Tiger isn't taking the missed cut at the British lightly. Nor should he. Because of the magic carpet ride that Tom Watson took us on, Tiger's British disaster was swept under the rug. But it was no less troubling.
Prior to the British, I wrote a number of pieces defending Tiger Woods' performances in Majors. No matter how hard you look, their was no defense for the way Tiger played at Turnberry. He was dreadful. He looked so frustrated that I believe his mechanics suffered as such. It's hard to criticize the mechanics of the worlds greatest, but their is no ignoring the stark difference between his first 31 holes and his last five. For the first time in ages, it looked like something might have been legitimately wrong with Tiger Woods. That had to concern Tiger. I just don't buy the theory that his performance can be ignored because of who he is. It was a major disappointment...pardon the pun.
Maybe he saw the mechanical flaw. Maybe that's why he plans on turning the PGA preparation dial to 11 and gunning it. He did consult the guidance of his swing coach, Hank Haney, last week.
Any other player, you might be worried about this kind of all-out approach. Not Tiger. He's used to playing with this kind of frequency. Until his leg injury sidelined his last year, Tiger had played three weeks in a row in every season of his career. In his 2007 triple stretch, he came out a winner twice and finished second once.
He's obviously angry about the British. He'll begin his revenge mission at 12:54 on Thursday.
And if there's one thing to be weary of, its an angry Tiger.
It should be a fantastic three weeks of golf.....
Monday, July 27, 2009
Oh, you didn’t remember? The New York Mets is a sports franchise, not a house of horrors as it often comes off as. And while I would normally accept the attention the organization is getting, this time, I find it extremely unfortunate. The New York Mets have a three-game winning streak. This is the first time they've won 3 in a row since late May, and no one cares.
During the melee that developed around the threesome of Minaya, Bernazard and Rubin, the Mets have put together their own trio of impressive victories over two of the National League’s hottest teams.
Rounding out the weekend, New York handled the Astros in Houston, outscoring them 18-6 in the final two games of their series. Houston had a 4-game winning streak rolling into Saturday. The Mets saw themselves produce runs early and have two promising outings from their starters.
On Saturday, Jon Niese made his first big league start since May 13th. The 22-year old went 7 strong innings, giving up just 1 run on 4 hits. The next day, Livan Hernandez threw 7 innings, striking out 7 in the process. After a quick dip in his performance, it now looks like Hernandez is on the up-and-up.
That brings us to tonight’s game. The Colorado Rockies, winners of 7 of their last 10, stroll into Citi Field to beat up on the Mets. Not so fast…
New York got another typical start from Oliver Perez. 5 innings pitched, 3 earned runs on 5 hits and 4 walks sounds about right. But much like the phalanx-like displays the Yankees put on, the rest of the team was there to pick him up.
The Amazin’s battled back into the game in the 6th inning. Down 3-1 in the midst of another great start by Ubaldo Jimenez, Daniel Murphy hit an RBI single to bring in Luis Castillo, who hustled on an infield single to lead off the inning. Then Cory Sullivan got a sacrifice fly to tie the game at 3-3.
Then in the 8th came the final death-nail, when Fernando Tatis launched a pinch-hit grand slam to centerfield.
During this run, Brian Stokes and Pedro Feliciano threw a combined 3 innings of scoreless ball to bridge to Francisco Rodriguez. Game over.
Not only does this team seem to be coming alive at the right time, but it doesn’t appear to be the usual Mets mirage. The group has an edge – a swagger to it. Watching SNY has gone from a chore to a spectacle.
The collective, mostly comprised of young up-and-comers, career minor leaguers and journeymen, is coming together. The team is rapidly beginning to transform itself from a laughing stock to a wild card contender right as the trade deadline approaches.
I spoke with the esteemed Jordan Lauterbach on the air today. He thinks the Mets will most definitely be buyers if they walk away from this series with Colorado looking strong. I believe they’ve been dead to rights for a long time, but this recent surge cannot go unnoticed.
Either way, the person rooting the hardest for a great showing this week is Omar Minaya. That’ll take some attention off him and his spats with newspaper writers. It would also prevent him from looking like an idiot. Remember, he said last week when New York was struggling that the team would be buyers at the deadline. That seemingly outlandish statement may be justified come Friday.
Oh no… Are we on Omar again?
It seems to me that whatever the task at hand is, Minaya finds a way to mess it up and make the Met organization look like buffoons.
Today’s Tony Bernazard firing news conference was no different. The Mets had a chance to rid themselves of one of their most unpopular figures and give off the perception of moving in the right direction. Instead, they took two steps back.
It is no secret that Bernazard wasn’t well-liked. The feeling in many circles was that Bernazard had way too much influence in organizational matters. His firing was widely called for and probably deserved. On top of being absolutely crazy, Bernazard didn’t exactly do a tip-top job with the farm system either.
The “absolutely-crazy” part came to a head last week when Bernazard reportedly removed his shirt while challenging the Mets double A team to a fight. This, coupled with apparent “H-R department complaints”, led to his firing.
Omar Minaya had a major chance today to vastly improve public perception of his team today and, in typical Omar fashion, made the situation ten times worse.
The shoe fell when Minaya accused New York Daily News beat writer, Adam Rubin, of exposing Bernazards fight club ways because Rubin wanted a job in the organization. Rightfully so, Rubin proceeded to flip out on Omar. It appeared as if Omar was trying to blame Rubin for causing the organizational unrest that led to Bernazards dismissal.
A few initial thoughts come from this:
1. It is obvious to me that the firing was not a Minaya decision. Bernazard is a close friend of Minaya’s and he seemed visibly upset and angry that it had come to this. What does it say about Minaya if he is reluctant to fire a guy who has embarrassed your organization and isn’t very good at what he does? Should the Mets continue to be loyal to someone who so obviously gives his friends seemingly unlimited leeway?
2. Is Omar so out of touch with organizational policy that he actually believes that a newspaper man with no prior experience in baseball would have a chance at this type of position? He obviously does. If not, than why bring it up?
This has to be the final straw in the Omar Minaya regime. Unless a miraculous run towards the post season is made, I don’t see how he survives another embarrassment.
Sure, in the grand scheme of things this probably is not a huge deal. He was mad because he was forced to fire his buddy and lashed out a little. By itself, this is something that could go away with an apology and a fruit basket. But the reality is that this is only an addition to a long list of embarrassments.
Throughout the press conference today, I was taken back to the Randolph firing. Most were on board with the Willie Randolph firing. No one would have said boo if the Mets had made Randolph a sacrificial lamb before they left for Los Angeles in mid-june of 2008. Instead, Willie turned into everyone’s favorite mis-treated employee and made the Mets look like they should be turned into the better-business bureau for abuse.
Minaya has had more lives than a cat at this point. He survived the collapse of 2007. He survived the botched firing of Willie Randolph. He survived the collapse of 2008. Until today, he looked to be treading water in the disastrous season of 2009.
I’m shocked it hasn’t come already. For an organization that is as concerned about public perception as the Mets are, how have they continued to employ someone that routinely fails in that area? No mater what the situation, Omar’s “hijinks” invariably make the Mets look bad.
There is only so many lives that a general manager gets. There are only so many embarrassments that can be laughed off behind closed doors. Eventually, the Wilpon chopping block has to hit Minaya.
If not now, when?
Sunday, July 26, 2009
From Yahoo Sports:
Nate Robinson is close to signing a one-year, $5 million contract with the New York Knicks, a source with knowledge of the talks said Saturday. The deal is expected to be finalized early this week.
Robinson, a restricted free agent, was courted by Greek team Olympiakos. He averaged a career-best 17.2 points and 4.1 assists in 74 games with the Knicks last season. New York, which nearly traded Robinson to Sacramento midway through the season, is trying to preserve as much salary-cap room as possible for the 2010 free-agent class.
Why is it that the Knicks can even sit down with Nate Robinson and consider a $5 million agreement, but leave David Lee in the dark? David Lee being a far superior, All-Star level player.
Lee is a top forward and wants to be in New York. Nate is a lower level talent that has expressed interest in being away from NY. Get D. Lee signed and move forward.
It's not even really the fact that Robinson is coming back that gets me heated. It's the fact that Robinson could have been signed to his qualifying offer worth under $3 million. He was painted into a corner, to the point where he had no other choice but to take his qualifying offer. Either that or he left, which is something Donnie Walsh and Mike D'Antoni wouldn't mind. But where does the extra $2 million come from? Why is it there?
Thank goodness for Alan Hahn. He just dropped my blood pressure a little with this tweet:
Hit the brakes on the Nate/signing story. I'm hearing nothing is immiment.
It better not be. Not at that figure.
It was actually pretty weird watching this stream.
EDIT: Apparently, he's been fasting (Don't ask...) so the hunger is probably adding on to Steph's out-there personality.
According to Jenifer Langosch at MLB.com, the Yankees have scouts in attendance to watch Ian Snell throw today at Triple-A Indianapolis.
The Yankees are known to be looking for a replacement for Chien-Ming Wang, and Snell has absolutely dominated since asking to be demoted to Indianapolis to straighten himself out. Snell has allowed just two earned runs through 32.1 innings, while striking out 43 and walking just 12.
Clearly, it wouldn't take an extreme amount to land Ian Snell, but the Pirates aren't going to give him up. He was sent down to the minors for a very good reason.
Getting Snell would make some sense now after Sergio Mitre's start today. He let up 4 runs on 9 hits in just 5 innings. He had a couple of quick innings, but let way too many people on and made some fielding mistakes. I doubt Snell would be much better. He struggled in the NL Central. What do you expect him to do in the AL East?
Right now a feasible move for pitching is to trade Shelley Duncan to a team that needs a hitter. He's hitting for power in Scranton, but might not be of much use to New York this year. Choose the right team, and Duncan can bring in a back-end pitcher -- one better than Ian Snell.
Jonathon Albaladejo was called up for today's game. An outfielder is expected to be called up by tomorrow. Joe Girardi stated that Austin Jackson will not be the one called up. He does not want to slow the development of the young outfielder.
Check it out for yourself. http://www.justin.tv/starburytv
Friday, July 24, 2009
From the NY Post:
Walsh has had advanced discussions regarding Rockets shooting guard Von Wafer, according to his agent Raymond Brothers. Wafer was a surprise last season, averaging 9.7 points. Ironically, the former 2005 Lakers' second-round pick played for the Knicks summer league team in 2008 and barely sawaction.
A source said the parties were trying to arrange a Knick visit for Wafer, 24. Walsh is interested in a one-year deal, possibly for biannual exception ($2.9 million).
Look, Donnie. If you really want a guard on the cheap, just get it out of the way and sign Jason Williams. This is getting to be ridiculous! Walsh is afraid to make any signings that would help the Knicks in the long run (ex: Ramon Sessions, David Lee) and is just waiting for next year to do it.
Do it now, Donnie! How is Von Wafer for a year better than Sessions for four? How do Grant Hill, Jason Kidd and Jamaal Tinsley fit into the future better than David Lee?
I'm starting to get restless with this stupid 2010 plan. No wonder David Lee is pissed off...
Thursday, July 23, 2009
From Terez Owens:
A Well placed source is telling Terezowens.com that Kim Kardashian and Reggie Bush are done! According to the source the recent trip the two took to Africa was in all likelihood their last. Allegedly infidelity is the reason for the break-up and there was not enough time to cancel the trip, so they went anyway.
Reggie and Kim went to Africa on behalf of Russell Simmons Diamond Fund which is backed by powerful diamond companies like Debeers. The fund helps the companies support economically disadvantaged people in nations where diamonds are a natural resource.
There have been lots of hints, like Reggie’s attitude and seeming refusal to walk near Kim when they returned to Los Angeles in the airport, or Kim’s recent comment that Khloe will most likely marry before her. Then Kim showed up solo to the Orphan movie premiere wednesday night.
The Source also added that it was a very famous and popular person Kanye West that caused the split. Reggie has to head off to work soon so he will be in New Orleans and the couple will have lots of time to think about if the person who cheated can be forgiven.
She really isn't as good looking as Kourtney. Reggie should hit that up.
Here's a little something I put together in honor of Q.
Good luck, Q, wherever you may go!
Details remain scarce, but David Lee's name is finally starting to come up again more often now that pretty much all the top unrestricted free agents apart from Odom and Andre Miller have been signed. With summer league ball behind us, the free-agent focus starts to shift to restricted free agents like Lee.
The problem? Unless Portland uses its cap space to make him an offer, Lee will be relying on the Knicks to cooperate in a sign-and-trade arrangement. And it's believed that New York is determined to retain Lee and Nate Robinson on one-year deals that preserve full Bird rights for both players without obligating the Knicks to slice into their projected salary-cap space for 2010 free agency.
But one well-placed insider volunteered this tip when it comes to Lee's situation: "Keep your eye on Chicago."
There are two moves that could come out of a sign-and-trade with the Bulls.
Either David Lee is sent for Brad Miller, whose $12.25 million contract is expiring after this upcoming season. That wouldn't make a great deal of sense because if Lee is signed to a $10 million deal, the Knicks would only gain another $2 million in cap space next summer. While it is something, more money may not be the biggest priority for New York at this point.
The objective now is to lock up a point guard, and sending Lee to Chicago could bring back Kirk Hinrich, who has been rumored in possible trades for a while now. With Derrick Rose playing at an All-Star level, Hinrich is expendible. He'll make $9.5 million this season, which could hinder New York in their pursuit for two max free agents next summer.
If the Knicks are going to trade David Lee, they'll have to get something significant back for him. $2 million is nice and a slightly above average, 28-year old point guard is okay, but they don't equate to Lee's value. The Knicks should wait for a better trade if they do want to trade Lee.
Several league sources said Wednesday that they believed the New York Knicks had abandoned their pursuit of Bucks restricted free agent guard Ramon Sessions, leaving the Clippers as the prime candidate for the 23-year-old. The Oklahoma City Thunder has a tangential interest, according to sources, but is not believed to be seriously pursuing Sessions.
With the Knicks still trying to keep as much cap room as possible for 2010, tying up funds in Sessions apparently is not a priority for New York, which is also in the midst of discussions with unrestricted free agent Andre Miller. However, the same limitations apply for Miller, who is looking for more than the one year offered by both New York and Philadelphia.
Well, that was fun... Let's get back to David Lee.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
With Steve Nash out of the picture for 2010 after he agreed to a two-year contract extension with the Suns, Knicks president Donnie Walsh is again zeroing in on young Bucks point guard Ramon Sessions. Walsh is on the verge of making Sessions a long-term, mid-level offer for roughly $26 million, the player's agent told The Post yesterday.
Walsh met with veteran free agent point guard Andre Miller yesterday at the team's Westchester facility, but the Knicks look at the 33-year-old Miller as a one-year rental, making him a longshot option.
On the other hand, Sessions, 23, now is being regarded by the Knicks as a point-guard-of-the-future type.
The Knicks became reluctant to get serious about Sessions earlier this month. They felt the Bucks would match a mid-level offer and didn't want to be tied up waiting on Milwaukee.
Now they think the Bucks will pass because of their comfort level with first-round draft pick Brandon Jennings, who is the centerpiece of the team's season-ticket marketing campaign on their Web site.
My tune has changed on Ramon Sessions a bit. I know that this will most likely prevent New York from signing David Lee to a long-term deal, but Sessions may be too good to pass up. With Milwaukee sitting on their hands and the Clippers getting Sebastian Telfair, the Knicks may be the only team bidding for him.
I like Toney Douglas' potential at point guard and feel that he could be very similar to Sessions, but why not? Grab one of the best young guards. He's quickly making his way into the conversation of top 10 point guards in the NBA.
Adding Sessions would allow NY flexibility with Douglas, letting him play off ball, off the bench or trading him. Not to mention, Sessions could draw some big names next offseason.
It looks like the Knicks are really into him. Here's Knicks Assistant Dan D'Antoni speaking about him.
Ideally, I'd love David Lee back in New York, but Ramon Sessions is making me think.
By the way, if you don't know Ramon Sessions, he has a great story:
The New Jersey Nets are among the teams who have expressed interest in Boston Celtics restricted free-agent forward Glen Davis, a league source said Monday.
The Nets still have their $5.8 million mid-level exception to spend as they search through their options from a pool of free-agent power forwards that also includes Lamar Odom and Drew Gooden. The Nets also are interested in Carlos Boozer, whom the Utah Jazz are trying to trade.
The Celtics have said they would match any reasonable offer for Davis.
I can't say that Glen Davis would be the savior for the New Jersey Nets, but he'd certainly be a key addition. The talk about Yi Jianlian becoming a force at power forward is unfounded. Yi hasn't done anything significant since coming to the NBA. No one knows what he is, regardless of the work he puts in.
But to be fair, we don't truly know what Glen Davis is. He sure did have an excellent postseason filling in for a future hall of famer. Those big jumpers he hit were impressive and unexpected.
He's proven that he has potential, but that was on an infinitely talented team. Remember, Davis didn't carry Boston on his back in the playoffs. It was mostly Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Rajon Rondo. We haven't seen him as a key part on a mediocre, unproven team like the Nets.
Sure New Jersey has nice parts, but they're not on Boston's level.
It would be a nice pickup for New Jersey, but at the mid-level exception, I'd expect Boston to match.
The plan seems foolproof. Acquire as many expiring contracts as possible. Dump as many of the bad contracts left over from the Isiah Thomas era. And create a promising young core. Check, check and check. That combination would not only give the Knicks the money to go out and get the superstars, but it would cause those superstars to seek out the Knicks.
Could LeBron James resist an opportunity to start over fresh in the biggest, brightest city in the world? Could Dwyane Wade ever turn down a chance to resurrect the Mecca of basketball? Would Chris Bosh scoff at the idea of assembling a super-team?
While the 2010 plan is indeed in motion, one situation has arisen to make Donnie Walsh, the Knicks and the New York fan base reconsider.
Chris Paul, the All-Star point guard for the New Orleans Hornets, believes he could be traded. When asked about his team’s financial restrictions, Paul openly told Pro Basketball News, "In this league, anything can happen. I can be dealt.”
Attaining Paul would be the same as signing a max free agent next summer. He’s one of the best all-around players in the NBA – top five overall, with the likes of LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard. Last season, Chris Paul averaged 22.8 points, 11 assists, 5.5 rebounds and 2.8 steals a contest. He posted career bests, shooting 50% from the field and 87% from the foul line.
The Hornets have the fourth largest payroll in the NBA. This is a team that was believed to be a title contender just last summer. Instead, New Orleans finished as the 7th seed and was handled in the first round by the Denver Nuggets. If the contracts run their courses, the Hornets won’t be under the salary cap until 2011.
While New Orleans will definitely want to rebuild their team around the 24-year old Paul, that may not be the best option. Paul, as the best point guard in the NBA, is obviously the most appealing trading piece. But he may have to be included in a trade in order for any team – especially one planning for 2010 – to take on one of the Hornets’ bad contracts.
The situation is reminiscent of the Toronto Blue Jays’ quest to trade Roy Halladay. If a team wants Halladay, it must accept the lofty contract of either Vernon Wells or Alex Rios.
Peja Stojakovic has been riddled with injuries since arriving in New Orleans. He’s been solid when healthy, but the key phrase is ‘when healthy’. He’s owed almost $30 million over the next two seasons, something the Hornets don’t want to deal with. He would be the player most likely to be sent off.
The New York Knicks are in search of a point guard. New York was close to signing Jason Kidd earlier in the summer. They just met with Andre Miller as well. So getting Chris Paul would fill that need more than sufficiently.
If Chris Paul’s inkling is spot on, the New York Knicks have the pieces to get it done. The trade would include Paul and Stojakovic going to New York. That would be about $28 million on the books for this upcoming season.
New York would send mostly expiring contracts to equal the amount. $13.5 million will come from Larry Hughes’ contract, Darko Milicic will take $7.5 million off the payroll, and Chris Duhon is worth $6 million.
The Hornets will probably want one young player, and Wilson Chandler fits the bill. He’s owed $1.25 million next season but will become a restricted free agent in a few years. An alternative to this deal would be to replace Chandler and Milicic with Cuttino Mobley’s $9.5 million expiring contract.
Regardless, the Knicks must take on about $28 million dollars. Stojakovic’s contract won’t run out until 2011. Paul will be around through the 2012-2013 season. That addition would put New York’s payroll at $50 million, and assuming the NBA salary cap is reduced next offseason, they’ll be right around the limit.
That means the Knicks would not have a chance to sign LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh or any other max free agent in the summer of 2010. That would be the case, assuming the contracts of both Eddy Curry and Jared Jeffries are not swapped for 2010 expiring contracts.
If the New York Knicks trade for Chris Paul, then the team would have little to no shot at grabbing one of the top free agents, but that doesn’t end their possibilities. With Stojakovic, Curry and Jeffries expiring in two years, $33 million dollars will be taken off the books. That would set the payroll at approximately $17 million dollars in the summer of 2011, giving the Knicks an opportunity to land some big names again.
The same three names pop up first: LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. Why? They all have player options for the 2010-2011 season. With all the talk of them hitting the market next summer, it’s still far from guaranteed. And in the summer of 2011, all three will definitely be unrestricted free agents, given they don’t sign contract extensions.
But popular opinion would have to be defied three times for that to happen, making that scenario rather unlikely. Aside from those three, the summer of 2011 will see a host of great unrestricted free agents.
Kobe Bryant tops the list. His contract will run out that summer as well. Paul Pierce is another prospect.
Also on the list of 2011 unrestricted free agents are Dirk Nowinski, Josh Howard, John Salmons, Richard Jefferson, Caron Butler, Jason Richardson and Michael Redd.
However, the most intriguing free agent that summer will be restricted; just about to wind down his rookie contract. Of course, I’m speaking of Kevin Durant, the 20-year old rising star for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The only downfall to this new plan is the time. In 2008, Knicks fans were promised a better team in two years. In 2009, the same will happen if the Knicks acquire Chris Paul. I, for one, was against waiting two years for Donnie Walsh to make a big move. But Paul would provide results, quieting fans like myself.
So now the question is ‘Does Donnie Walsh uproot his master plan for a year, in order to obtain a top five player in the NBA?’
Monday, July 20, 2009
From the NY Daily News:
The Knicks met with free-agent point guard Andre Miller on Monday, the Daily News has learned.
According to a team source, the meeting between Miller and Knicks president Donnie Walsh took place at the Knicks training facility in Greenburgh. It is not believed that the Knicks made Miller an offer. Miller is hoping to sign for more than the mid-level exception of $5.8 million.
A more plausible scenario for the Knicks would be to work out a sign-and-trade with the Sixers. Chris Duhon would almost certainly be included in a deal for Miller.
Last week, Miller met with officials from the Portland Trail Blazers, who have money under the salary cap to offer Miller a contract worth $8 million to $10 million annually. There has also been talk of a possible sign-and-trade between Portland and Philadelphia.
Well I don't know how the Knicks can sell Andre Miller on the MLE. Not when he can get $8 million with Portland, an actual playoff team.
New York is really wasting time by trying to bring Miller in. If they want to create the mirage of a competitive club next season, there are bigger names out there to do so. Namely David Lee. But that's besides the point. I know it's the mid-level exception, but isn't the object of this game to get younger? Last I checked, Miller was well over 30.
According to Michael Lombardi of National Football Post, the contract talks between Jets running back Leon Washington and the Jets are expected to heat up this week. Lombardi is highly connected in the league and usually has great insider info, which makes this exciting news. Here’s what Lombardi had to say:
Things are going to heat up this week with the Jets and running back Leon Washington. Washington does not want to hold out from camp, but he also wants to be compensated for his contributions to the team. He’s a huge part of the Jets’ offense, but like Laveranues Coles and Chris Baker last year, he feels he was promised a new deal. This needs to get resolved.
I just did this dance... the whole thing... That's not weird, right?
Much like the David Lee contract negotiations, the sooner it's done, the better. I don't see what's so difficult about signing your best offensive and special teams player to a relatively cheap contract.
From the Miami Herald:
Two-time NBA All-Star Carlos Boozer said he and the Utah Jazz have "mutually agreed'' to a trade, and it would be "a beautiful thing'' if he could wind up reunited with Olympic teammate Dwyane Wade on the Heat.
Boozer, who owns a waterfront house in Miami and has spent the past five off-seasons here, runs a summer basketball camp at Gulliver Prep Academy in Kendall and said he considers Miami home.
''My wife [CeCe] and I first came here for tax reasons, and fell in love with it,'' Boozer said Monday. ``Love the palm trees, the laid-back attitude, the sun, quality of life. It's like paradise here, and I would love to be part of the Heat. They're a very good team, and I'm real close to some of the guys. Dwyane and I started to get close at the Athens Olympics in 2004, and I'd love to play on his team. Plus, I already live here. I'm just waiting to see what happens.''
If Carlos Boozer is traded to the Miami Heat, which is what it's looking like, a series of event will occur for the New York Knicks.
First, New York won't be able to get their hands on his sweet expiring $12 million contract. That would give them less money to work with in 2010. It would also leave them without a power forward, possibly nudging them to re-sign David Lee. Unless Donnie Walsh wants to rely on Chris Bosh being around during the "Summer of LeBron" he should sign somebody.
But most importantly, Boozer could very well please Dwyane Wade, maybe so much so that he signs that contract extension offered to him last week. That leaves next summer without one max free agent and one less superstar the Knicks have a chance to sign.
While nothing has officially happened, it appears as if Carlos Boozer will go to the Miami Heat, continuing the offseason of improvements in the Eastern Conference.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Knicks will likely use mid level to land Bucks RFA Ramon Sessions. Could make an offer by Tuesday or sooner.
Interesting. This development, coupled with Donnie Walsh predicting the end of the David Lee extravaganza by the beginning of this week, should make for a suspensful few days.
Ramon Sessions is a nice young player, but the Knicks may have something special in Toney Douglas. I wouldn't want to retard his development as the point guard of the future. Then again, the 23-year old Sessions may be too good to pass up. The Knicks were going to sign Jason Kidd after all...
Stewart Cink finally shed the "so-close, but yet so far demons" and won his first Major Championship, but unfortunately for Cink, it doesn't really matter all that much. Sure, if your last name is spelled C-I-N-K it matters. If you are a buddy or pal of good ol' Stu from Huntsville, Alabama, it matters. But to the rest of us, all that matters about Stewart Cink is that he's not Tom Watson.
He's not the guy we climbed out of bed at 9:15am to see tee off. He's not the guy we were crouching for at 18 when he needed one more putt to etch his name into golf lore. It could have been anyone, I guess. Lee Westward, Matthew Goggin, Ross Fischer, or wunderkind Chris Wood. It would have been the same feeling. The same disappointment.
If he were any other guy, the story would be how Watson choked it away. We would be yelling and screaming about how he just couldn't handle the pressure. We would be asking, "How could a pro miss a par putt for the win like that". The words yips and "throwing up" would be typed on key-boards across America.
But we know that's not the way it should be remembered and it won't be. Cink could go on to win 20 more majors and still, no one would remember when he got his first. But it wouldn't take long to revive the memory. All someone would have to say was "Watson" and the scenes would be coming rushing back.
I know I'll never forget where I was when Tom Watson stood over a par putt to win the British at age 59. As for Cinks putt? I probably will forget about it by mid-week. Through no fault of his own, Stewart Cink sunk the most anti-climactic putt to win a major that we'll see for a long while. The balloon had been popped. Cink's was the only one still floating.
And that's the unfortunate nature of Golf. Any other week, Cink's story would be fantastic. At 16, he looked like a dead man. Cink had just bogeyed the second hole in his last three. A few holes behind him, destiny was doing just enough to remain dressed as Tom Watson. It looked like another close call.
He parred 17.
Ok, better now. But his caddy's back still reads Cink. Not enough W's in that name.
He birdied 18.
Hey, look at this. Stewart Cink is kind of back in it. But then again, charging to beat destiny is a lot different than charging for destiny.
Typically, destiny doesn't miss to many par putts.
Then, like a flash, destiny went home. Watson remembered he was 59 years old and missed a putt he would have made with the club handle between his teeth in any of the first three rounds and then sprayed the ball all over Scotland in the playoff. A playoff is perhaps the worst place to suddenly loose your accuracy off the tee. And just like that a week of outstanding golf turned into a sleeper of a playoff.
A non-biased observer may have been able to see this coming. Heck, as disappointed as I was, I wasn't all that surprised when Watson missed his par-putt at 18. He had been struggling with the putting stroke all day. A confident Watson who couldn't miss one during the first three rounds became a hesitant Watson who couldn't make one on Sunday. He was plus 2 for the day and made only three birdies all day. He wasn't exactly robbed of the tournament. When you miss almost every birdie opportunity, theft becomes almost impossible. Two less missed opportunities and Watson is walking up 18 with a 3 shot lead and tears in his eyes (and yours). Don't believe me? Go DVR the ESPN Classic replay this week (it has to happen right?, I mean what do they have to show this week...Classic USFL?).
As I've written, people love (me included) to talk about a good choke. Heck, I'm still referencing Kenny Perry and Chad Campbell at the Masters from time to time. But in rare events, chokes are almost universally ignored. This one will be.
I think I know why, too. Golfers are typically figures that look like untouchable demi-gods on the tee. They hit it longer and straighter on there absolute worst day then you do on your absolute best. They read greens like its "Hop On Pop" or "The Cat in the Hat". They have wives that are gorgeous and children that look a lot more well-behaved then yours are. They are easier to connect with then a "regular athlete", but the connection is still quite fuzzy.
I don't think that was the case with Watson. I think every golfer saw a little bit of themselves in good old Tom this weekend. He was gracious, unassuming, and warm. He had as many wrinkles on his face as yours and looked like he could be playing with you at the club on Saturday mornings. He didn't have bulging muscles or toned triceps. He wasn't a pro athlete with a club and a tee. He was you. and you were him. When Tom missed that putt at 18, you knew exactly how he felt. He was obviously tired during the playoff and so were you. 22 holes is a lot for a guy pushing 60.
And just like you were last weekend, Watson was beaten by the young guy who just joined your club.
Nice guy, you think afterwards. He's got a lot to learn.
Note: I'll be on vacation until Monday, July 27th. Max Caster and Nick Malone will be holding down the fort as always. Enjoy the RBC Canadian Open next week. I'll be back for the Buick....Only four weeks until Major #4.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Chicago, Miami, New York, Detroit and now New Jersey have been most prominently mentioned as possible destinations for Boozer ever since he decided late last month to opt in for the final season and last $12.65 million on his current six-year, $68-million contract with the Jazz.
...The New York Daily News, meanwhile, reported that while "a deal with the Knicks is possible," it also is "complicated" because restricted free agent forward and possible trade piece David Lee is a base-year compensation player.
The contracts of base-year compensation players basically are valued at half for calculating trade value, often making them difficult to deal.
If New York does get Carlos Boozer, the big question becomes whether he will be signed to a long-term deal or will the Knicks let his $12 million expire and free up space for next summer.
Boozer is indeed a top player in the NBA, but the uncertainty surrounding his health and durability still lingers. He's one of those players who is normally attached to the phrase "when healthy."
On top of that, "The Booze Cruise" and LeBron James apparently don't get along. I would safely assume that Boozer's presence on the team would deter LeBron from coming to New York. He would be more comfortable and happy with Chris Bosh or David Lee in the frontcourt.
So I'd expect Donnie Walsh to take the money and run to the "Summer of LeBron" if he snagged Carlos Boozer.
As for the New Jersey Nets, their situation is similar. I have a sneaking suspicion that Jay-Z and LeBreezy have already spoken about a long-term pow-wow in the Garden State -- which could possibly turn into Brooklyn.
Once again, would James accept Boozer? Probably not.
Plus, what do the Nets have to give up? There is an overflow of guard-forwards since the Vince Carter trade and the draft. I would guess Chris Douglas-Roberts would be a main piece to any Boozer trade. CDR plus Rafer Alston and Tony Battie -- both expiring contracts -- would equal the $12 million needed to complete the deal.
As a big proponent of CDR and a big opponent of Boozer, I would think long and hard about doing that trade.
Now the other thing about Carlos Boozer is that if he's healthy through 09-10, then he could draw free agents other than LeBron, namely Dwyane Wade. Just something to ponder...
The US was charged with defending the cup for the first time since Watson's buddy, Jack Nicklaus, captained the team in 1983. The cup of national dominance had sat oversees since 1985. After the U.S reclaimed it in 1991, Watson knew that he couldn't head the team that gave it right back to the Europeans. And he didn't. Watson's club put together a thrilling 15-13 victory to retain the cup. Watson was needed and he delivered.
Now, some 16 years after Watson was forced to take a hard look at his competitive golf longevity, golf needs him again. But this time his playing, not coaching, is the main focus. A one over, 71 at Turnberry on Saturday leaves Watson in sole possession of the lead going into the final round. With the two best players in the world (Tiger and Phil)not playing on the weekend, the British had a chance to be one of the more forgettable ones.
Watson has made it unforgettable. It almost doesn't matter what the 59 year old does tomorrow. The golf world will be riding shotgun all the way. And 99.9% of it will be rooting for him.
How could you not at this point? Besides being on the verge of unprecedented history, Watson is still as likable as any athlete today. His face is as warm as the summer sun. His demeanor as calming as the waves that border Turnberry .
Here's a guy who is one of the greatest players in the sport's history (Golf Digest ranked him 10th in 2000) and he still is as humble as a young kid who's playing in his first tournament. He admitted to assuming he would be nervous. He answered the press' questions with both thought and insight. He is showing people that golf can be great theater, even with it's best player throwing up a dud and missing the cut.
I could write about Matthew Goggin and Ross Fisher, both of whom sit one back of Watson. I could write about Westward, Goosen, or Cink. All on whom are well within striking distance of a man who hasn't won a major since 1983.
But that's not the story. It's not even close.
The reality is that all of those players are just foils in the plan. They are the villains to Watson's hero.
In any other week, Fischer's story would be great. The Englishman is awaiting the birth of his first child. His wife is due any day now and he has repeatedly that he will leave the Open if she goes into labor. Great story. Not at great as Watson.
Stewart Cink would also be a guy to pull for. He joined the tour in 1997, has come close in a few majors, but never could seal the deal. He sits three shots off the pace. Major number one for Cink would be a nice story. Not as nice as Watson.
No matter what any of these "other players" do tomorrow, it won't matter. They won't be the 2009 British Open champion. They will be the guy who came between Watson and the greatest golf story ever.
To say Tom Watson is destined for greatness tomorrow almost seams like an understatement. Everything is working right now in Watson's favor. Even his putting stroke, a historical bugaboo for Watson, is working. It's nothing short of magical.
Something like this is above traditional analysis.
His ninth major would take him to another level in golf lore. We often see athletes go from good to great. We don't often see them go from great to legendary.
With a win tomorrow, Tom Watson will become one of the legends of the game.
Tee time for Watson: 9:20am
From Gery Woelful's Twitter:
LVegas I hear Knicks covet Ramon Sessions, expected 2 call Bucks soon about sign and trade. Otherwise prepared 2 use mid-level. Yes, Knicks love Sessions
This would be a trade involving David Lee. Milwaukee lost their starting power forward after Charlie Villanueva left for Detroit. I like Sessions but this deal isn't right for the Knicks. Not because I don't want D. Lee to leave. But because it looks like New York has a long-term point guard in Toney Douglas.
Watch T.D. in the Summer League games. He's a stud.
Regardless, Sessions alone doesn't equal David Lee's value. Bruce Bowen, Amir Johnson or Kurt Thomas should come back in that deal. All have expiring contracts.
From the NY Post:
Knicks team president Donnie Walsh predicted negotiations with David Lee will come to a head early next week, and indications were Lee will either sign an offer sheet with the Trail Blazers or settle for the Knicks' five-year offer, which agent Mark Bartelstein still believes is below Lee's market value.
If Portland doesn't come through and Lee still doesn't accept the Knicks' proposal, Walsh could pull the offer off the table next week.
"It probably will be next week, the way Mark talks," Walsh said. "My feeling is one way or another. He's looking to get an offer sheet that reflects David's value. I hope he doesn't so I can get him at the value I think he's at. There's a disparity."
So it's come to this...
If it's truly between Portland and New York, why ever would he come back to play in the Garden? Portland is a young playoff contender and will pay full price. New York is still rebuilding and is only looking to give up $8 million a year tops.
As one of the biggest David Lee fans this side of the Mississippi, even I'll admit he's not worth the desired $12 million. But Donnie Walsh should be able to get within reasonable distance from that price. I would go as high as $10 million for Lee because he is too important to let go. The power forward spot is a question mark and Lee would solidify it.
Plus, from what I've seen in Summer League, D. Lee would help Jordan Hill out tremendously. As the only really imposing big man, Hill gets swamped. Lee would take a lot of that presure off the rookie, thus giving him a better chance at success this year.
And, oh yeah, 65 double-doubles. He beat out Dwight Howard, who can palm a 4-door sedan and high jump a tank.
Another fascinating part of this article is:
With his eye on the 2010 salary cap, Walsh is seeking a deal averaging between $7 and $8 million. Lee has agreed to backload a deal with the Knicks and take a pay cut for 2010-11.
Holy crap! The guy is allowing the team to have flexibility in the fabled "Summer of LeBron"! Why not just take that deal, Donnie?
Yesterday, we mused if Watson would be able to compete in tougher weather conditions. For a while, it looked as if the answer was no. After a birdie at 1 that put a smile of everyones face, Watson preceded to bogey five out of his next six holes. He was showing the kind of game that everyone assumed would come on day one.
But then the magic returned, almost as if it had never left. Watson's bogey on 7 would be his final of the day. He birdied nine and away he went. A birdie on two of his final three holes, including a phenomenal putt on 18, put him on top.
Color me impressed. I have sent in my Tom Watson believer papers. His play after a rough front nine wasn't just remarkable, it was inspiring. Watson could have accepted his fate. He could have laid down and succumbed to the low expectations that inevitably follow senior plays around. But he didn't do it. He didn't fold. Watson knew that Thursday wasn't a one-and-done deal and that he could compete in this tournament. He believed in his game and in the process made a believer out of the golf world.
It is a fact that Watson was benefited by the fact that no one had a particularly good round. But I don't buy that he was paying any attention to the leader board. This was not the reason his play picked up in the back nine. If the course was left defenseless on Thursday, it found that defense yesterday. All you had do was look at the pantlegs to see how the wind was whipping. Although the early part of the day was sunny, rain made an appearance in the mid afternoon. And as the weather got worse, Watson got better. He was presented with his first challenge and strangled it.
With Tiger Woods gone and Phil Mickleson at home, Watson now becomes the peoples champ. Find me a person who isn't rooting for Tom Watson and I'll show you a person who doesn't like golf too much. Rooting for Watson may be the easiest thing to do in sports right now. He is single handedly making what could have been a dud of a tournament into a potentially legendary one.
What's truly ironic about this is that ABC needed Watson this weekend. After a presumed missed cut, Watson was supposed to help out with the ABC TV coverage. Now ABC needs Watson for a different reason. They need him to play as well in the next two days as he has in the previous. With Tiger Woods on his way back to his Orlando home after missing a cut, the only story that appeals to the mass audience is the Watson revival. If Watson gives it up today, it may be a bad Sunday in the ratings department.
I mean, does Steve Marino excite you? Does Mark Calcavecchia? How about Ross Fischer or Miquel "Bert Lahr" Angel Jimenez? I love golf and I cringe at the thought of waking up on Sunday to watch Calcavecchia vs Marino.
This tournament needs Tom Watson. It's the difference between forgettable and legendary.
Sidenote: If you want a player to watch out for besides Tom Watson, keep an eye on Vijay Singh. Singh sits in fourth place, two shots off the pace.
Friday, July 17, 2009
The injury bug seems to have followed the Mets into the second half of the season. In the first half, about 15 different players were on the disabled list.
New York will have trouble sufficiently filling Sheffield's position. Fernando Martinez is out for 6-8 weeks after knee surgery and Carlos Beltran doesn't even have a timetable for a return. Look for a combination of Fernando Tatis, Nick Evans and Jeremy Reed filling the spot.
UPDATE: Right hamstring cramp is the diagnosis. With the way the Mets training staff has acted this year, I won't be surprised if this turns into a complete tear. Maybe they should replace the blood around the suffering area. It's worked extremely well before...
No need. Sheff will only miss a few games at most.
Tell me something. Does anyone else think that this "cramp" has anything to do with that knee injury Gar-Bear had about a month ago? Remember, he was scheduled for an MRI on his right knee and never got it. Could he have been compensating for the pain? Or is the area just worn down over time?
From Inside Hoops:
The Oklahoma City Thunder waived guard Earl Watson it was announced today by Thunder Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti.
The 8-year NBA veteran appeared in 68 games (18 starts) with Oklahoma City this past season and averaged 6.6 points, 5.8 assists and 2.7 rebounds in 26.1 minutes per contest.
Unlike signing Jason Kidd for three years or trading away an expiring contract for Andre Miller, this is a move that would make a world of sense for the Knicks. Earl Watson is not a big name. He doesn't have a big contract. And he's not near the best at his position. He'll have to accept a 1-year deal from the Knicks.
That would give New York another option at point guard other than Chris Duhon, who got tired out from all the minutes last season, and Toney Douglas, who may not be 100% ready to play big minutes at the point.
This would inexpensively eliminate a bit of a need. Earl Watson needs to be a Knick.
UPDATE: Forget it. He agreed to a 1-year deal with the Pacers. I guess someone wants to make the playoffs.
Here's some pics of Gallinari during his sit down with Mike Breen on Tuesday:
Dude's haircut is ballin'. I truthfully think that there are only a handful of men in the world who are more good looking and attractive than me. Danilo Gallinari is one of those few.
Anyway, the news making the rounds is that Gallo's back is nearly 100% and will most likely be ready for training camp.
Here's the actual interview:
--On another note, Gus Johnson and Walt Frazier were just interviewing Herb Williams. Epic win!
From the AP:
Sergio Mitre will become the Yankees' No. 5 starter while Chien-Ming Wang is on the disabled list.
Yankees manager Joe Girardi said the team plans to bring up Mitre and start the 28-year-old right-hander against Baltimore on Tuesday night.
Mitre agreed to a minor league contract with the Yankees during the offseason, then was suspended for the first 50 games after testing positive for a banned substance under the major league testing program. He was 1-0 with a 1.93 ERA in two starts for Class-A Tampa and 3-1 with a 2.40 ERA in seven starts at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
I've been a big fan of this move for a while. Sergio Mitre is a veteran who has gone more than 6 innings consistently, unlike Alfredo Aceves, who was never asked to go more than 5 before his start. Mitre's last start was clearly the reason for this decision coming down.
Now the bullpen is strengthened because Aceves is back in his normal role of utility reliever. If Mitre gets knocked around, Aceves can come in and save the day like he's done so many times before.
I'm looking forward to what we see on Tuesday.
Omar mentioned -- twice -- that he talked with five or six teams today. In case anyone was wondering.
Yes, I think we're all wondering what Omar Minaya has up his sleeve. This could obviously mean some more moves for the Mets, but it could also mean that Omar is just trying to put up a smokescreen to the fans. I guess he doesn't enjoy getting his ass blasted by the Mets' fan base for not making moves, but, according to Omar, at least he's trying.
I'd like to see where this goes. I doubt it's anywhere significant.
From the NY Post:
Restricted free agents David Lee and Nate Robinson have spoken to each other during the July free-agency period and feel "disrespected" by the Knicks' lack of urgency in retaining their services, according to a source.
Perhaps Donnie Walsh can do something about it as he bolted the Las Vegas summer league for New York yesterday to hone in on his next moves, with the Carlos Boozer sweepstakes, Tim Thomas' free-agency, the Andre Miller situation and Lee/Robinson on his agenda.
The Knicks would love to arrange a three-team deal for Boozer, who has one year left on his pact, with Lee a pawn. Utah plans to match Portland's offer sheet for Paul Millsap, which would leave the Trail Blazers cap room to snag Lee in a three-team deal. Utah is bent on unloading Boozer's contract.
You know, I don't blame David Lee or Nate Robinson for feeling disrespected or unwanted or forgotten by the team they've been loyal to for four years. Lee moreso than Robinson, as David Lee is efficient and is a great fit going forward.
Both were the face of the Knicks in New York. The fan base loved them more than any other player on the team. And now that it appears Donnie Walsh wants to disconnect entirley from the Isiah Thomas era so desperately, he's forgetting about the real identity of the Knicks.
That being said, I'm clearly not a fan of this Carlos Boozer deal. There is a way for the Knicks to keep Lee and have enough cap space to sign two free agents next season, and it's less complicated than a three-team deal. That's the Tracy McGrady for Eddy Curry trade, and, of course, that hinges upon Curry being functional. And to his credit, Curry has looked lighter and swifter on the court in Vegas, but won't be playing because he doesn't feel he's game-ready.
I don't know anymore. The reasoning is there. David Lee is perfect for the New York Knicks moving forward. And every day that passes is another that makes Lee loathe the franchise even more, leading to him signing on with another team.
Oh, and if the Knicks get Tim Thomas for a third time, I think I might just projectile vomit on my computer.
--About Carlos Boozer, he may end up on the Miami Heat. Yahoo Sports writes:
Pat Riley has listened to Dwyane Wade express his unease with the Miami Heat sitting out the Eastern Conference’s arms race this summer. As the Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers and Orlando Magic elevated themselves as championship contenders, the Heat president sold his superstar on patience, promising a plan to surround him with talent for the long run.
Now, the Heat are working furiously to deliver Lamar Odom and Carlos Boozer to the shores of Biscayne Bay. The Heat are trying to sell Odom on a five-year, $34 million contract at the mid-level exception, and a league executive with knowledge of the talks says Miami has also hatched a three-way proposal with the Utah Jazz and Memphis Grizzlies to secure Boozer.
If that happens, and Miami re-signs Boozer to a longer deal, which would happen, you can say 'Goodbye' to Dwyane Wade on the free agent market next year. Those moves would make Miami a contender in the Eastern Conference and make Wade happy in South Beach.