– Steelers’ OLB James Harrison (left knee) underwent arthroscopic surgery Wednesday morning. The 34-year-old’s timetable is not yet known, but he will miss the start of the season and could be placed on the PUP list. In Harrison’s four missed games in 2011, the Steelers went 4-0 and allowed just 16.75 points per game.
– Cowboys’ coach Jason Garrett says the team will reevaluate TE Jason Witten (spleen) after letting his injured spleen heal for the next 8-10 days, then decide on whether surgery is required. The injury is officially being labeled a “slightly lacerated” spleen, and the Cowboys are taking it “very serious(ly).” The team hopes Witten will heal with rest and rehab, as surgery would force him to miss regular season games.
– The Flyers have signed F Wayne Simmonds to a 6-year/$24M contract extension worth $4M annually. Simmonds will play out the final year of his existing contract in 2012-13. He recorded personal highs with 28 goals and 49 points in 82 games last season.
– NHL commissioner Gary Bettman says there is still a “wide gap” between the league and its players when it comes to negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement. ”There’s still a wide gap between us with not much time to go. This is a process that we’re going to continue to work hard on. I think there’s still a number of issues where we’re looking at the world differently.” NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr and Bettman aren’t scheduled to meet again until next Wednesday.
– Bulls’ G Derrick Rose (torn ACL) said his injury was “the closest thing to death,” and according to CSN Chicago, Rose is expected to rehab “through at least the February All-Star break.” ”That’s the closest thing to death, the closest to death I’ve got to right there, where it just seemed like the wind and everything was taken out [of me]…The injury could have been way worse.” D-Rose is likely to be sidelined through March.
– Wolves’ G Ricky Rubio (knee surgery) is “progressing faster than normal,” but is expected to be out until at least December. Owner Glen Taylor said, ”The doctors said he was progressing faster than normal, and normal was supposed to be in January. Faster than normal would be December. He’s going to start running and stuff in a few weeks.” Rubio hasn’t begun running yet, meaning he’s not even close to a return, let along to training camp. He could miss the entire first month of the season.
– Knicks’ F Amare Stoudemire promised he would have an “incredible year” next season after working with Hakeem Olajuwon in the offseason. He averaged 17.5 points, 7.8 rebounds and 1.0 blocks on 48.3% shooting last season. It was the first time since 2005-06 that he’s shot under 50% from the field, averaged under 20 points and failed to average at least eight rebounds, all while playing in just 47 regular season games. Olajuwon calls Amare’s improvement “night and day” from where he was previously. His agent, Happy Walters, adds that “this is the most engaged I’ve seen him in years.”
– Red Sox’ DH David Ortiz (Achilles) is “starting to feel better” but was unable to run or hit Wednesday as originally hoped. Big Papi will continue to be shut down from baseball activities for the next few days. “The thing is, every time I was doing some running, I was getting sore. That’s not what we’re looking for. We’re looking to take a step forward instead of a step back. Now we’re going through some things and I’m starting to feel better.” There’s obviously no timetable for his return. Manager Bobby Valentine says he has “no idea about David coming back. I pray that he is, this year and next.”
– Padres’ RHP Huston Street (calf) is not expected to return from the DL until September. Street has been out since last Friday, when he was injured while running from the mound toward first base on the final play of the game. It’s unclear when he’ll be cleared to resume baseball activities.
– Blue Jays’ C J.P. Arencibia (fractured right hand) had his hard cast removed Wednesday afternoon. Arencibia is now in a soft cast and can begin doing light strengthening exercises. Barring setbacks, he’s likely to take dry swings in one week. The 26-year-old has been on the DL since July 25, and is hoping to return in early September.
– Cubs’ OF Alfonso Soriano told Patrick Mooney of CSN Chicago that he probably wouldn’t accept a trade to the Giants. Soriano has 10-and-5 rights and can veto a trade to any team. He told the Cubs at the July 31 non-waiver deadline that he was not open to a move to San Francisco and it doesn’t seem his mind has changed. The 36-year-old cleared waivers this week but might just stay put with the Cubs.
– Check out AJ Lee with her real life boyfriend:
– THQ creative director Corey Ledesma recently spoke to WWE.com about the upcoming WWE ’13 video game, due out October 30th. Here are some highlights of what Ledesma said about:
The New “WWE Live” Feature: “WWE Live” is a complete audio and presentation experience that we are creating in “WWE ’13.” It’s an experience fans have never seen or heard before in a WWE game. Our new “Spectacular Moments” allows gamers to recreate some of the most awe-inspiring moments ever seen in a WWE ring, such as when Big Show superplexed Mark Henry at WWE Vengeance last year, causing the entire ring to collapse. Other examples are when Mark Henry slammed Sheamus right through the crowd barrier at SummerSlam — also last year — and even when The Undertaker famously sent Mankind flying off the top of the Hell in a Cell cage and through the announcer table back in 1998. All these “Spectacular Moments” are also backed up with a new audio experience that makes you feel as if you are at a raucous, live WWE event — hence the name “WWE Live”!
“Catching Finishers”: “As any WWE Superstar knows, you never want to leave yourself in a vulnerable position, and flying through the air is one of the most vulnerable positions in WWE. In “WWE ’13,” if you’re not careful, and you jump off the top rope or perform a springboard attack when your opponent has a finisher move stored, you could end up being caught in a devastating “Catching Finisher.” Just the other day, I was playing as “WWE ’13? cover Superstar CM Punk in the game, and I went up to the top turnbuckle to perform his diving elbow signature move. I wasn’t paying attention, though, and I failed to notice that The Undertaker had a finisher move stored. It was too late! I had already hit my signature move, and as I was flying through the air, I knew I was a dead man. Sure enough, Undertaker caught Punk in mid-air, then put him in perfect position to execute the Tombstone Piledriver and finish the match. That was a very tough lesson to learn, and one of the most exciting moments I’ve experienced thus far in “WWE ’13.”
WWE ’13 Being A Revolutionary Game: “Just like the game’s cover Superstar, CM Punk, we’re ready to drop a “pipe bomb” on WWE video games. We are revolutionizing sports-entertainment video games in so many different ways, I don’t know where to begin, but I’ll give it a shot. First, we have one of the largest rosters of WWE Superstars, Divas and Legends ever assembled in a WWE game. Second, we completely overhauled and lengthened our Story Mode this year. We are bringing back the Attitude Era, which gives players the amazing opportunity to relive some of the greatest moments in WWE history. The new Attitude Era Mode is 40 percent larger than our Story Mode last year. We are introducing new match types, such as “Special Referee,” championship titles, game modes, options, unlockable content and much more. We haven’t even announced the new features yet for our existing, fan-favorite game modes, such as WWE Universe and Create-a-Superstar. “WWE ’13? is poised to take the video game world by storm and deliver the largest WWE game to date.
How The Attitude Era Will Be Portrayed: “With such a beloved era, it’s critical we stay as authentic as possible. We worked closely with the great production team at WWE to create more than 20 exclusive Attitude Era video packages that players will be able to watch as they play throughout Attitude Era Mode. We recreated all of the classic WWE arenas, television graphics and entrances from the time period. We have more than 60 Attitude Era cutscenes that play out throughout the course of the mode, each telling the story as you play the matches. The Attitude Era roster has more than 30 Superstars and Divas from the time period, with lots of unlockable alternate attire options. We also have more than 100 unlockables in the mode, as well as cool bonus features, such as WWE Attitude Era photos, videos and more. As you can see, our goal was to create the most authentic Attitude Era experience possible.”
– According to the PWInsider, WWE has reporetdly signed Guillermo Rodriguez, son of Mexican legend Dos Caras and the younger brother of WWE superstar Alberto Del Rio. Guillermo is already wrestling for WWE NXT as Memo Montenegro and trained in Florida with Pablo Marquez earlier this year.
– According to the PWInsider, after it was reported earlier today that Caylee Turner was not listed among WWE’s developmental talent on the relaunched FCWWrestling.info, but her profile remained online, the profile was removed. This would indicate that she has been released from the organization. Turner, the younger sister of Alicia Fox, joined the promotion in June 2010 to begin her professional wrestling career. In February 2011, she was released from her WWE contract in order to participate in the filming of the rebooted Tough Enough series on the USA Network. After finishing in fourth place on the program, Turner, whose real name is Christina Crawford, re-signed with WWE. She regularly competed for the developmental promotion, which culminated with her capturing their Divas Championship on June 29, 2012. She has not lost the belt.
– Donald Trump congratulated former WWE chief executive Linda McMahon on her triumph in the Connecticut GOP Senate primary on Tuesday. The eccentric billionaire wrote on Twitter,
“Congratulations to Linda McMahon on her victory in the Connecticut Senate primary. She is an amazing woman–smart as you get!”
– Big Show is featured in a public service announcement promoting the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s anti-drunk driving campaign, “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.”
– WWE.com has announced that Kevin Rudolf will perform “Don’t Give Up,” SummerSlam 2012?s official theme song, live on pay-per-view this Sunday.
– Manchester United is set to complete the signing of Robin van Persie from Arsenal on Thursday after the Premier League rivals reached an agreement over the sale of the Netherlands striker. Early reports indicate that the London club wanted 20 million pounds ($31.3M) for its captain, who has one year left on his contract. The Dutchman, who joined from Feyenoord in 2004, was the Premier League’s top scorer last season with 30 goals. But he refused to sign a new contract with Arsenal, saying he wasn’t happy with the direction the club was heading. Since announcing on his personal website last month that he wouldn’t be signing a new contract with Arsenal, the 29-year-old Van Persie has also been linked with City and Juventus. But United has emerged in the past two weeks as the club most likely to come forward with a bid.
– TNA star Kurt Angle spoke with Thomas Alexander of ZooToday.com and spoke about his recent Funny or Die comedy video and whether he’d consider competing at the 2016 Olympics. Here’s what Angle said about:
Would He Try Out For The 2016 Olympics? “No! By that time I’d be 47, that’s definitely not an option for me. As I said I, found out that the requirements of the training was too much for my body to handle at this point in my career. When you make the Olympic team, that’s a milestone in itself and the training is unimaginable. The training you need to do is borderline abuse.”
Dealing With Injuries As He Gets Older: “You know when you get older it takes longer to recover. Even with the injuries that I’ve had in the past they never really kept me on the side line very long. I always thought I was invincible. This past year made me realize that I am not invincible anymore. That was something I learned the hard way.”
His Recent Funny or Die Comedy Video With RVD: “They actually contacted me after hearing I was training for the Olympics, but got injured, they said they would like me to do it and then air it just before the start of the games,” he said. “I thought it was quite an honor to have guys such as Will Ferrell and Adam McKay want me for a project. So they asked me to pick a partner and I chose RVD as my coach. I knew he’d do an excellent job and people don’t know him like I do, he’s a really funny guy.”