– The Pistons have traded G Ben Gordon and a lottery-protected 2013 1st-round pick to the Bobcats for F Corey Maggette. The move will save Detroit about $15M on the two remaining years on Gordon’s contract, while Maggette enters his contract year. Gordon will challenge Gerald Henderson for the starting shooting guard job, while Maggette’s health will be his key to becoming the starting three. Detroit was initially believed to be targeting a big man at the draft, but this trade may put that on hold.
– CBS’ Ken Berger wrote Tuesday that the Mavericks fear that Nets’ G Deron Williams is leaning toward returning to Brooklyn next season. July 1 is fast approaching, but Williams’ future may be put on hold until some of the other big name free agents find new homes. D-Will appears to have narrowed down his destinations to the Nets and Mavericks, and this report suggests that, at least right now, he’s leaning towards re-signing with Brooklyn.
– Rockets’ G Kevin Martin is not interested in re-signing with the team after this season, a source tells Sam Amick of SI. Martin is being shopped as trade bait with his expiring contract, and is believed to be on a different page than head coach Kevin McHale.
– The Knicks say G JR Smith has declined his $2.5M second-year contract option and will become a free agent. Smith averaged 12.5 points last season. Smith can re-sign with the Knicks, but is expected to sign for more regardless of where he goes.
– Canadian Justin “Jus Fly” Darlington won a Nike dunk contest by performing a cartwheel, followed by a Vinsanity dunk through the legs. Enjoy:
– Knicks’ F Amare Stoudemire has been fined $50,000 by the NBA after hetweeted a gay slur. Stu Jackson, the league’s executive vice-president of basketball operations, called Stoudemire’s language offensive and derogatory. Stoudemire apologized Sunday to a fan for using the slur in response to a crude tweet in which the fan admonished the All-Star to “make up for this past season.” The fan, (at)BFerrelli, tweeted his comment on Saturday and received a direct message containing an expletive and the slur from the account Twitter verifies as Stoudemire’s. BFerrelli, identified by the New York Daily News as Brian Ferrelli, posted a screen shot of the direct message. Direct messages can only be seen by the sender and the recipient. Stoudemire also issued an apology in a statement Tuesday.
“I am a huge supporter of civil rights for all people. I am disappointed in myself for my statement to a fan. I should have known better and there is no excuse.”
– The NBA has awarded the Celtics a 2013 2nd-round pick from the Thunder as part of a trade disclosure dispute ruling involving F Jeff Green (heart surgery), who missed the entire season. Commissioner David Stern determined Tuesday there was no evidence of bad faith or intent to withhold information on the part of the Thunder, but that their cardiologists had knowledge about Green that was not shared with their own team management and should have been disclosed to the Celtics. NBA teams are required to disclose to each other in connection with trades a player’s past history that could affect his ability to play in the future.
– Coyotes’ impending UFA F Shane Doan is expected to test the free agent market on July 1, according to GM Don Maloney. Speaking on NHL Live radio Tuesday afternoon to discuss the situation, Maloney said that the team is optimistic a deal can still get done to retain Doan despite ownership issues. Greg Jamison, the former CEO of the Sharks, won’t become the team’s new owner before July 1, meaning the Coyotes’ hands are tied until free agency opens. Doan is believed to want to remain with the Yotes, however, ownership instability may force him to sign elsewhere. The 16-year NHL veteran is expected to field offers from a long list of teams interested in his services. The 35-year-old is coming off a 5-year/$22.75M contract with an AAV of $4.55M.
– The Oilers are expected to name Ralph Krueger as their new head coach at a press conference scheduled for Wednesday. The 52-year-old has been the team’s associate coach the past two seasons, and would become the 10th head coach in franchise history. Prior to being hired by the Oilers on July 30, 2010, Krueger had been a scouting consultant for the Hurricanes. The Winnipeg native was also the coach of the Swiss men’s national ice hockey team for more than a decade, including coaching the team at the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver.
– The NHL and NHL Players’ Association are scheduled to kick off formal talks on a new collective bargaining agreement in New York on Friday, according to ESPN. The current CBA is set to expire September 15. Despite the fact a season was lost the last time they went to the bargaining table, there has been a slight hint of optimism in the air at the NHLPA’s executive board meetings this week. In all, the union has gathered 53 players together for three days of comprehensive meetings before talks open. They were split into three breakout groups on Tuesday afternoon and combed over a number of topics expected to be raised during CBA discussions–everything from desired changes to the current system to player safety and on-ice issues.
– According to ESPN, Predators’ impending UFA D Ryan Suter will test the free agent market on July 1, but will keep Nashville as a potential landing spot. Stay tuned.
– The Sharks have re-signed D Justin Braun to a 3-year contract, F Tommy Wingels to a 2-year contract and F Andrew Desjardins to a 1-year contract. The Sharks also announced they made qualifying offers to forwards T.J. Galiardi, Tim Kennedy, Brandon Mashinter, Frazer McLaren, Matt Pelech and James Sheppard; defencemen Matt Irwin and Nick Petrecki and goalie Alex Stalock. San Jose did not issue qualifying offers to forwards Benn Ferriero, Tony Lucia, James Marcou and Cameron MacIntyre, and goalie Tyson Sexsmith, making them free agents.
– According to TSN, Maple Leafs’ management will travel to Toronto to meet with D Justin Schultz and his representatives this week.
– Devils’ GM Lou Lamoriello spoke with ESPN in regards to former assistant head coach Adam Oates being permitted to leave the coaching staff in order to become head coach of the Capitals:
On Adam Oates: “He’s been certainly a credit to us here. He did an outstanding job for us. I wish him well.”
On Oates having great relationship with Ilya Kovalchuk and other players: “There’s no question. He’s very communicative, very intelligent, he explains things very well. He has the resume behind him as a player and having the success he had–all the credentials are there for having the kind of respect players have for him.”
On the future of assistant coach Larry Robinson being in doubt: “Larry is just wondering exactly where he’s at and what he wants to do. He’s been there for a long time. I can’t say for sure what he’s going to do.”
– The AHL Chicago Wolves have announced today that Scott Arniel has been named as head coach. Arniel, 49, becomes the ninth head coach in Wolves franchise history. The Kingston, ON, native most recently was head coach of the Columbus Blue Jackets during the 2010.11 and 2011.12 seasons, compiling a record of 45-60-18. Canucks’ President & General Manager Mike Gillis said,
“We are thrilled to have Scott return to our organization. He has had a large impact on the development of a number of our current roster players and we are confident he’ll again play an instrumental role in player development. Scott brings a great deal of character, experience and expertise to the head coaching position.”
– The Braves were scouting Twins’ LHP Francisco Liriano during Monday’s start against the White Sox, according to Phil Mackey of 1500ESPN.com. Liriano threw seven innings of one-run ball, giving up just four hits. Mackey writes that the Nationals also had scouts in attendance, but they were scouting OF Denard Span. Liriano has posted quality starts in five of his last six since rejoining the rotation.
– Blue Jays’ SS Omar Vizquel said Tuesday that he plans to retire from baseball at season’s end. ”This will be my last year. I’ve enjoyed this game a lot, but I think it’s time to pursue a new career as a coach or manager, and hopefully I’ll get that opportunity in the future.” The 45-year-old has taken only 58 at-bats this season.
– Braves’ manager Fredi Gonzalez said that RHP Randall Delgado and LHP Mike Minor will keep their spots in the rotation. In addition to being maddeningly inconsistent this season, both men were hit hard by the Red Sox in their last starts. “The last thing you want is to create panic. It’s not like you’re running [Jim] Palmer, [Mike] Cuellar and [Pat] Dobson out there. You’re going to go through some growing pains. You’ve got to stay patient with these young pitchers and keep going.”
– According to Tim Britton of the Providence Journal, Red Sox’ RHP Clay Buchholz (illness) has been diagnosed with esophagitis. The condition has “led to an erosion of the esophagus and an associated gastrointestinal bleed.” Buchholz is expected to make a fully recovery, but remains out indefinitely. He was placed on the DL on June 20.
– Phillies’ 1B Ryan Howard (Achilles tendon surgery) could begin a minor league rehab assignment Thursday, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. Howard has been playing the field in simulated games in Clearwater, Florida since mid-June. He’s expected to spend roughly three weeks playing in minor league rehab games before returning to the big league lineup shortly after the All-Star break. The 32-year-old has been out all season.
– Blue Jays’ prospect C Travis d’Arnaud (torn PCL) suffered a torn PCL in his knee Monday while sliding into second base, and will miss 6-8 weeks. The 23-year-old will be on the DL at Triple-A Las Vegas, but is expected to make a full recovery. One of baseball’s top prospects, d’Arnaud is batting .333/.380/.595 with 16 homers and 52 RBI in 67 games this season for the 51s.
– President Barack Obama was in Boston on Monday, the home territory of his Republican rival Mitt Romney, and thanked the Red Sox for trading 3B Kevin Youkilis to his hometown White Sox. Obama was then greeted with a mix of “boos” and “Youk’s.”
“I’m just saying. I didn’t think I’d get any boos out of here. I guess I should not have brought up baseball. My mistake.”
“You’ve got to know your crowd.”
Whitehouse Press Secretary, and Red Sox fan, Jay Carney commented on it, saying:
“Anyone who knows Boston, and anyone who was in that room last night knows that the preponderance of people shouting in response to what the president said about Kevin Youkilis were saying ‘Yoooouk’ and not ‘Booo’ for God’s sake.”
“Are you saying “boo” or “bo-urns?”
“I was saying “boo-urns!”
– The Astros have placed OF Justin Maxwell (left ankle) will undergo arthroscopic surgery to remove loose bodies, and will miss 4-6 weeks. He has been placed on the 15-day DL. Maxwell has eight homers and 24 RBIs in 61 games this season. His three pinch-hit home runs are the most in the majors.
– The Yankees have claimed RHP Danny Farquhar off waivers from the Athletics, and optioned him to Double-A Trenton. The 25-year-old was 1-3 with a 4.46 ERA with Triple-A Sacramento.
– During a conference call for UFC 148, UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva had some choice words for his opponent Chael Sonnen.
“First of all, Chael is a crimina. He’s been convicted of crimes. He doesn’t deserve to be inside the octagon. And when the time comes and the time is right, I’m going to break his face and break every one of his teeth in his mouth.”
Silva and Sonnen previously fought in August of 2010 at UFC 117, with Silva winning by triangle choke in the final minutes. Sonnen then failed a post-fight drug test for elevated testosterone. Outside the ring, Sonnen pled guilty to charges of money laundering in connection with mortgage fraud on January 3, 2011. Eventually, he reached a plea deal, and was able to resume his fighting career. After earning victories over Brian Stann and Michael Bisping, the UFC granted Sonnen a rematch with Silva. Judging by his comments, Anderson is highly motivated for this fight.
“I’m going to beat Chael like he’s never been beaten before. The joke is over. There’s no more talking. I know he’s on the line listening, and the game is over. I’m going to beat his ass out of the UFC. He’s never going to want to fight again after I’m done with him.”
“It doesn’t matter if I’m on the bottom, the side, the top – it doesn’t matter. Chael Sonnen’s going to get his ass kicked like he’s never gotten his ass kicked before. What I’m going to do inside the octagon is something that’s going to change the image of the sport. I’m going to beat his ass like he’s never been beaten before. I’m going to make sure that every one of his teeth are broken, his arms are broken, (and) his legs are broke. He’s not going to be able to walk out of the octagon by himself. I can guarantee that.”
“And I know that he’s listening (on the conference call), so the game’s over. No more [expletive]-talking. It’s on now. I”m going to make him eat everything that he’s said, not only about myself, but about our country (and) about everything,” he said. “I’m going to make him pay and make sure he never disrespects any fighter. Not only Brazilian, but any fighter. I’m going to beat him maybe the way his parents should have beat him to teach him some manners. Because he’s disrespectful, he’s a criminal, and I’m going to beat him up like he’s never been beat before. He can say whatever he wants, but I’m not playing any more.”
UFC President Dana White weighed in on Silva’s shocking comments, saying:
“I’ve promoted every Anderson Silva fight since he’s been in the UFC and I’ve never heard him talk even remotely closely like this. He usually doesn’t say anything negative or disrespectful. I’ve never heard Anderson so over the top like this.”
“There’s no doubt that we plan on doing over a million buys here, and yes, we expect UFC 100 numbers,” White said. “This isn’t one of the biggest sporting events of the summer – it’s one of the biggest sporting events of the year,” White said. “Anderson Silva is a very big star, and this is a fight that people care about and want to see all over the world. Very few people would dispute, not only is he the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world, but probably the best mixed martial artist ever.”
Sonnen also gave his thoughts, saying:
“Tell him I’ve got two words for him: Medium. Rare (in regards to Silva’s wife making him a steak).”
Check out this promo for the fight:
– On The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, actor Louis C.K. jokes about American track and field star Lolo Jones, a 29-year-old virgin, creating a sex tape with fellow-virgin, Broncos’ QB Tim Tebow.
“I did E-Harmony and it didn’t work out. I’ve tried it all. Right now I’m just seriously focused on the Olympics. I’m pretty sure I’m just going to invite Tim Tebow to church. It’s a 100% way of not getting rejected. I’m totally just going to invite him to go to church.”
– Mike Tyson was a guest on the Good 5 Minutes portion of Pardon the Interruption. During the segment, Iron Mike revealed that he caught his ex-wife Robin Givens in bed with Brad Pitt. Check it out:
– Justin Roberts was absent from Monday’s Raw SuperShow as Lilian Garcia instead handled ring announcing duties. It was a one-off appearance. Garcia stated on Twitter,
“Justin was on vacation. He will be back next week.”
It was Garcia’s first appearance on the program since retiring in 2009.
– WWE issued an apology Tuesday afternoon via WWE.com for a technical malfunction on last night’s Raw SuperShow. A local television commercial aired during the first minute of the program. Their statement reads:
“Due to a technical malfunction at USA Network’s Master Control, the opening of last night’s Raw SuperShow was inadvertently interrupted by a 60-second local spot. On behalf of USA Network and those of us here at WWE, we apologize for this error.”
– WWE Hall of Famer Tammy “Sunny” Sytch stated on Twitter Tuesday: “My sweet love got a call from the WWE today..fingers crossed everyone!! @DamienDarling.” Darling, her boyfriend, is a twenty-six year old Northeast-based independent wrestler.
– Matt Striker turns 38 years old today while Larry Sharpe turns 61.
– NASCAR points leader Matt Kenseth is leaving Roush Fenway Racing at the end of the season, and will be replaced by Nationwide Series champion, #17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Kenseth is rumoured to be going to Joe Gibbs Racing, either in Joey Logano’s No. 20 Toyota or a fourth unannounced team. The team offered no answers in the sudden divorce of one of NASCAR’s longest active relationships. Only Jeff Gordon, with Hendrick Motorsports since 1993, has been with his team longer than Kenseth has been with Jack Roush. Co-owner Roush said Tuesday,
“I’d like to thank Matt Kenseth for his many years of loyal service. Matt has been an integral part of this organization for well over a decade, and we are extremely appreciative of his accomplishments and contributions to the team, and will always consider him a part of the Roush Fenway family.”
Kenseth and teammate Greg Biffle are ranked 1st and 2nd in the Sprint Cup Series, clearly poised to make a run at the championship. Kenseth opened the season with his second Daytona 500 victory, and has 11 top-10 finishes through 16 races. Kenseth did not respond to a request for comment on Tuesday, but tweeted about his departure.
“I’m very thankful to Jack Roush for the opportunities he’s given me over the past 14 years. Together we have enjoyed a lot of success. And as a team we are committed as ever to the remainder of the 2012 season and chasing a 3rd sprint cup title for Jack and RFR.”
– AC Milan has re-signed defender Mathieu Flamini to a 1-year contract extension. Flamini has reportedly agreed to a considerable pay cut. Flamini has played 100 games for Milan since signing from Arsenal in 2008 and helped it to the Serie A title as well as an Italian Supercup. The 28-year-old missed most of the last campaign after getting injured in a preseason friendly and undergoing knee surgery.