– Giants’ head coach Tom Coughlin admitted that WR Hakeem Nicks’ (fractured foot) status for the season opener on September 5 is “probably going to be close.” ESPN’s Adam Schefter suggests that the 12-week timetable issued by the team is optimistic, however, Nicks will undergo surgery Friday, after which a more definitive timetable should be known. If Nicks does take 12 weeks or more to heal, Coughlin says, “you’re going to be sitting right up next to that opening game, and we certainly hope that Hakeem is correct in saying that he heals fast.”
– According to CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, the Ravens are in communication with unsigned franchise RB Ray Rice. This contradicts ESPN’s Sal Paolantonio report Wednesday that the sides were not in contact. “I think that one gets sorted out, I really do. They’re talking, there’s some constructive dialogue going on.” Per La Canfora, “it’s pretty clear” Rice will get between $20-25M guaranteed. La Canfora estimated that the contract will be worth $8.5M a year, with “$22M, something like that, guaranteed.”
– Bears WR Johnny Knox (back surgery) admitted today that he could miss some or all of the 2012 season. Knox lost 30 pounds in rehab and just recently regained 10 back, so needless to say, he’s not even close to participating in practices. “My main focus is in the weight room. I’m not in a rush. This is my spine, the core of my body I’m dealing with. It’s not my knee, ankle or shoulder. I’m taking my time.” He remains out indefinitely.
– Check out the latest screenie from Madden ’13, featuring Jets’ QB Tim Tebow…well, Tebowing:
– According to NFL Network’s Jay Glazer, the unidentified winner of Lawrence Taylor’s Super Bowl ring could be actor Charlie Sheen. Glazer tweeted:
‘Got no idea if this is true but if is it’s hilarious. Lawrence Taylor & his agent Mark Lepselter were told last night winning bidder for LT’s Super Bowl Ring was none other than Charlie Sheen’
– TNT analyst Shaquille O’Neal said Thursday he has no interest in becoming the new Magic GM. ”When I first heard about the vacancy for the Orlando Magic general manager position, I was clearly intrigued. However, this is not a job I have an interest in pursuing. I feel very fortunate to be with TNT and to have the best job in sports.” It’s probably a good decision for both sides.
Speaking of Shaq, here are some preview pictures during the filming of his cameo on Grown Ups 2 that stars Adam Sandler, Chris Rock, and Kevin James:
– Lakers’ G Kobe Bryant was named to the All-NBA first team for the 10th time Thursday. Kobe had one of his most best seasons at age 33, in a compressed season, in addition to offseason knee surgery. He was second in the league in scoring at 27.9 points, his highest mark since the 2007-08 season. LBJ received 118 of a possible 120 first-team votes Thursday Michael Jordan, Karl Malone, Kareem Abdul-Jabaar, Jerry West, Bob Pettit, Elgin Baylor and Bob Cousy are the only others with at least 10 first-team selections. Kobe is joined on this year’s first team by Heat’ F LeBron James, Thunder’ F Kevin Durant, Clippers’ G Chris Paul and Magic’ F Dwight Howard. Guards Tony Parker and Russell Westbrook were selected the second team along with forwards Kevin Love and Blake Griffin and centre Andrew Bynum.
– Free agent G Chauncey Billups (torn left Achilles) “probably” won’t be ready to play until January, according to the LA Times. Billups, 36 in September, underwent one of the most serious surgeries possible for an athlete, and at his age, his interest on the market remains uncertain. The Clippers would like to re-sign him, though, pre the Times.
– Sixers’ legend Allen Iverson was on hand for Game 6 of the Sixers/Celtics series. AI also debuted his new Reebok Question shoes, which are available to the public on May 25. Check it out:
– Lightning’ GM Steve Yzerman spoke to a Tampa radio station and hinted that the team won’t be in the running for Canucks’ G Roberto Luongo.
“Obviously I’d love to have a 20-year-old [Roberto] or Martin Brodeur and not worry about goaltending for the next 20 years, but that’s hard to do.”
“I think everybody’s trying to find somebody that’s that elite guy… My philosophy, I’m trying to find that Hall of Famer goaltender. Good luck trying to do that. It takes time. We’ll find that through the draft, through unrestricted free agency. That guy isn’t there at this time.”
– According to the Arizona Republic, the Coyotes have interest in re-signing G Mike Smith. Smith has one year remaining on his contract, but GM Don Maloney is hoping to sign him to a long-term extension. Re-signing impending UFA F Shane Doan, however, remains the team’s top priority entering the summer. Smith enjoyed a career-year last season, posting a 38-18-10 record with eight shutouts, a .930 SV% and a 2.21 GAA.
– A girl on Twitter named Alexandra (Twitter handle @alexanddra) tweeted a picture of Flyers’ F Claude Giroux playing beer pong with casts on both wrists.
“giroux just whooped my ass in beerpong. he has casts on both his wrists…”
– For those that missed it, check out this great save by Rangers’ G Henrik Lundqvist–on his own teammate, Brad Richards:
– The Maple Leafs have signed D Petter Granberg to a 3-year entry level deal Thursday. Granberg won a gold medal with Sweden at this year’s IIHF World Junior Championship. The 19-year-old had one goal and three assists with 10 penalty minutes in 38 regular season games with Skelleftea AIK of the Swedish Elite League.
– Former NHL F Sean Avery posed partially nude for a Terry Richardson photo shoot. Check it out:
– The White Sox have placed LHP John Danks (sore left shoulder) on the 15-day DL. Danks has since been scratched from Friday’s start against the Indians. It’s clear how long Danks has been pitching through the soreness. The team is targeting a June 4 return, but manager Robin Ventura believes Danks won’t need a minor league rehab assignment. Danks is 3-4 with a 5.70 ERA this season.
“I was definitely looking forward to getting out there. I’ve said it since the last start: I was hoping that would be kind of the start to jump-start my season. Now, here we are. It seems like if it’s not one thing, it’s something else at this point. Just trying to stay positive. I’m going to get all my work in and get healthy and like I said I’ll be rested up for June on.”
– The Tigers have placed OF Austin Jackson (abdominal strain) on the 15-day DL, retroactive to May 17. He’ll be eligible to return on June 1. Jackson hasn’t played since last Wednesday. The 25-year-old is scheduled to return to Detroit on Friday for additional testing, including an MRI.
– Marlins’ OF Emilio Bonifacio (thumb) will undergo surgery Friday and will miss 4-6 weeks, sidelining him through late-June or early-July. Bonifacio was placed on the DL earlier this week with a left thumb sprain.
– Padres’ LHP Cory Luebke (left elbow) underwent Tommy John reconstructive surgery today, performed by Dr. Lewis Yocum. Speaking of Yocum, he also gave RHP Tim Stauffer (right elbow) a second opinion regarding his sprain, however, the team has not disclosed the report. Finally, OF Carlos Quentin (knee) will begin a Single-A rehab assignment on Thursday. He remains out indefinitely.
– Former MLB RHP Curt Schilling’s faltering video game company, which received a $75M loan guarantee to move to Rhode Island in 2010, laid off its entire staff on Thursday. An email sent by the 38 Studios company to workers and obtained by The Associated Press says they were notified of the “non-voluntary and non-disciplinary” layoffs on Thursday. 38 Studios moved from Massachusetts after Rhode Island agreed to back the loan. Officials said the deal would bring hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars of tax revenue. The company was more than two weeks late this month on a $1.1M payment to the state’s Economic Development Corp. State officials said the company wasn’t able to make its payroll. Gov. Lincoln Chafee said the company was facing “grim times” but he wasn’t abandoning efforts to salvage the company and protect the state’s investment. The state would likely be responsible for some of 38 Studios’ debts should it collapse. The company had 300 employees in Providence, Chafee said. It also has an office in Maryland. It released its much-anticipated first game, “Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning,” to strong reviews in February. Schilling, who also pitched for Baltimore, Houston, Philadelphia and Arizona, has said the game performed well, but Chafee has said it was a flop.
– According to the Wall Street Journal’s Brian Costa, Mets’ manager Terry Collins has told 1B Ike Davis will not be demoted to Triple-A. Davis has an awful .159/.213/.290 batting line and 44 strikeouts in 155 plate appearances this season. For now, he’ll remain with the big club.
– The Orioles have signed LHP J.C. Romero to a minor league contract and have assigned him to Triple-A Norfolk. Romero was released by the Cardinals earlier this month after allowing 14 hits and nine runs in eight innings.
– The Rangers have acquired LHP John Gaub from the Rays. Gaub was 0-1 with a save and a 4.32 ERA in 16 appearances.
– Lilian Garcia’s ringside misshaps continued Wednesday night at WWE’s SmackDown live event in Poughkeepsie, New York as the Decade Diva mishandled an important ring introduction and once again had difficulty maintaining her balance. Garcia erroneously announced the No Holds Barred Match between Randy Orton and Kane as a No Disqualification Match. The SmackDown Diva also had trouble staying on her feet as she nearly tripped while making her entrance around the ring. After Garcia tripped while making her ring entrance last month at a SmackDown taping in London, England, WWE Encyclopedia author Kevin Sullivan said based on the sports entertainment organization’s past history, he would not be surprised if she was burdened with a gimmick inspired by her series of mishaps.
“I don’t know why, but I truly enjoy following Lilian Garcia’s follies on the web. I’m really a good person, but her goofs make me laugh. Some guys are goofy before becoming serious (Angle, Y2J, Double J), while others start serious and turn goofy (Santino, R-Truth, Godfather). I wouldn’t be surprised if WWE gave Lilian Garcia a tripping gimmick.”
– Starship-Pained.com conducted a Q&A with John Morrison on Saturday at the Motor City Comic Con and the former WWE Superstar discussed working with Vince McMahon.
“It was great and interesting. He’s a wrestling genius. He has a phenomenal mind. He’s comical. However, what he wanted always conflicted with what I wanted, but he has a clear vision & he had confidence. It was really cool to be around him.”
Regarding being ECW Champion, he stated,
“It was awesome. Think about all the history. RVD, Tommy Dreamer, Taz, the ECW Ballroom. It was the watered down WWE version of ECW but it was still an honor.”
– WWE Hall of Famer Tammy “Sunny” Sytch angrily responded to online wrestling outlets publishing her Facebook status update where she stated admitting herself to the hospital this week complaining of stomach flu and discovering that she has severe gastroenteritis and an enflamed pancreas. Contrary to her previous post, she adamantly states that she does not have ‘health issues.’ Sytch wrote,
“Yo wrestling websites!! are we not allowed to get sick?? Are we super human or something?? get a grip people…at least quote me exactly instead of leaving out the words you dont like….idiots.” She continued, “OK, now Im getting annoyed. Here’s the story: I had a stomach flu, was dehydrated from puking my guts out, so I took myself to the hospital to get fluids… the next morning I was fine… it’s not like I had to call 911 b/c I was dying! ENOUGH!!!! EVERYONE GETS SICK!”
The former WWE Superstar continued to proclaim to her Facebook friends that she is fine.
“IM FINE NOW….. that’s why these dirt sheets are so bogus… it’s not like I have “health issues”, I had a bug! I’ve been completely healthy for 2 days now!” Sytch wrote. “I AM better…been fine for 2 days… Im not dying guys..I was puking for 4 days. I appreciate your concern, but if you keep thinking im still sick, the dirt sheets are just gonna eat it up more.”
Sytch then explained to her cousin what a ‘dirt sheet’ is after believing she was talking about dirty bed sheets.
“Oh cousin… dirt sheets, not dirty sheets. they are wrestling websites that spread gossip,” Sytch wrote.
– The Miami Herald has published Part 2 of its recent interview with WWE Hall of Famer, Shawn Michaels. In this installment, Michaels talks about the first half of his legendary WWE singles career during the 1990?s – including how he earned his reputation of being such a pain in the ass behind the scenes, how he was able to keep his job, Jim Ross’ role as the head of talent relations and much more. Here are some highlights of what Michaels said about:
Why He Was So Difficult To Work With Behind The Scenes: “If I’m putting on my psychiatrist’s hat and you dig all the way down to the root of it has nothing to do with wrestling or anything else,” Michaels said. “It just has to do with a young man’s insecurities with himself.
“Having said that, that can manifest itself in any form and how that’s interpreted obviously depends on the time and depends on the spin. Let’s face it. The ability it takes to be difficult really is to disagree with somebody. Nine times out of 10 mine were usually more creative issues than anything else. The company felt one thing. I felt another. We both feel opposite things, so therefore it’s going to be difficult.”
“I was a young guy full of piss and vinegar — excuse my language — and I felt I had a very good idea of where the business needed to go and things that needed to be done.
“I never went back and told anybody what I did was justified. I’m not saying that at all, but let’s face it. That is where the business went — to more attitude and things of that nature and to perhaps being a little more truthful and a little more reality based, which I was doing many years ago as well as other guys.
How He Was Able To Keep His Job: “I fear people will misinterpret me trying to say, ‘Therefore, I should be absolved of all the stuff I did wrong,’ Michaels said. “I’m not saying that at all, but the reason I survived it, and the reason I’m still part of the WWE now is because the one guy who loves absolutely every stitch of it, which is Vince McMahon, the guy I argued with more than anybody, understood it.
“He understood that it wasn’t unprofessionalism or ego that was driving all that. It was a desire and a passion to be the guy and to be the absolute very best that I could be. His only challenge was channeling all that in the right direction, and he did that pretty darn well. He tells people all the time the reason he didn’t fire me is because he could see through all that. Ultimately, when it came down to his way or my way, he always knew when he said, ‘This is what I want done, period.’ He knew I’d do it, and I always did.”
– Lex Luger has arrived to WWE.com as he is now featured in their Alumni section. The website says of The Total Package, “With his impressive physique and powerful abilities, Lex Luger became one of the most popular competitors of the 1990s. Check out Luger’s profile, photos and videos, the latest addition to the Alumni section!”
– Here is the latest update from The Ultimate Warrior discussing his recent biceps injury, the 1-year anniversary of Randy Savage and plenty of ‘inspiration’ for his Warriors:
– Emmett/Furla Films’ feature film Empire State starring Dwayne Johnson and Liam Hemsworth will begin shooting next Tuesday for twenty days in New Orleans, Louisiana.
– In this week’s edition of WWE’s Outside the Ring, Derrick Bateman takes part in a party for the mind, soul, and body in a ZUMBA class. Bateman takes his newly found ZUMBA talents backstage at WWE where he teaches Kaitlyn and other WWE Superstars some new moves.
– Brooke Hogan appeared on Fox News Channel’s Fox & Friends Thursday morning to promote her arrival to the cast of TNA’s IMPACT WRESTLING starting Thursday, May 31 on Spike TV. Joined by ODB and Velvet Sky, she talked about following in her father’s footsteps before demonstrating wrestling holds.
– Rapper Lil’ Wayne visited skateboard phenom Rob Dyrdek and the Street League friends. Check it out: