NBA free agency 2017: Kyle Lowry wants to stay with Raptors, team prez insists

Raptors president Masai Ujiri has joined Kyle Lowry in shooting down a Toronto Star report that says the All-Star point guard has zero interest in remaining with the team.

LeBron James got behind the Celtics defense and caught an outlet pass from Kevin Love just as he approached the rim. James wound up for a monster dunk, but there was just one problem. The ball hit the far side of the rim and caromed high off the cylinder and into the hands of Boston’s Avery Bradley.

Had James made the dunk, he would have given the Cavaliers a 70-69 lead, which would have been the first time they led the game since jumping out to a 5-0 lead to open Tuesday’s Game 4. The 6-8 James had missed just six dunks all season.

Elite Mens Mike Mitchell Jersey The Celtics scored the next three points, but the Cavs did eventually hold an 87-80 lead after three quarters as Kyrie Irving picked up the slack for James, who sat for the final 6:46 of the first half with four fouls. Irving scored 19 of Cleveland’s final 21 points of the quarter.
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If I look at the numbers, look at the body of work, I can say that six championships later, Phil Jackson is one of the greatest coaches in the history of sports. Not just basketball, but in sports. And I can say that definitively. And I can also look at the numbers and say that as the guy running the New York Knicks, he’s done a poor job. When you look at the results, he’s been a failure thus far. Carmelo Anthony is an outstanding basketball player who has handled himself remarkably during these last couple of years. At the end of the day, he negotiated a no-trade clause. I think [Phil Jackson is] going about it the wrong way trying to force [Anthony] out. He has all the power and he’s taking full advantage of it.

The Redskins were only a half game back of their division-winning campaign of 2015

It was a golden opportunity to win and get in the playoffs at home, wasted. It wasn’t as bad as the prime-time whiff against the Panthers in Week 15, but it had the same effect of costing Washington a playoff position.

The Redskins were only a half game back of their division-winning campaign of 2015, but Cousins, after seeming to turn the corner at midseason, wound up taking several steps back. Sure, only Drew Brees threw for more than Cousins’ 4,917 yards, but it came with fewer TDs (29 to 25) and more INTs (12 to 11).

Overall, Cousins’ numbers look solid with still above-average efficiency, but the same issue lingers: his coming through in the biggest, toughest games when his team needs him most. The ability to light up teams downfield with his big arm is there, but so is the maddening inconsistency.

Washington did have some other problems. It struggled against the run for most of the season. It had only flashes of an effective power running game. Cousins, more times than not, was the relative bright spot.

Through all his greatness, the grit is often forgotten. It’s easy to do just that, because that persona was more tied to his predecessor, Brett Favre.

It may seem unfair that Rodgers can be so precise and efficient as a passer, and still have the moxie to run around for several seconds under hot pursuit to deliver pure magic see his amazing TD to Allison.

Did Rodgers close his case for MVP That’s up to a vote, but it’s hard to ignore him leading the league in TD passes for the first time in his career with the big 4-0. That’s the tiebreaker vs. his other main QB competition, Matt Ryan and Tom Brady, who was suspended the first four games of the year.
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Broncos coach Gary Kubiak tells players he is ‘stepping down’ for health concerns

Gary Kubiak is putting his own well-being ahead of his career.

The Broncos coach wouldn’t discuss his future Sunday, leaving that until Monday. But his players confirmed what was already suspected.

Tight end Virgil Green confirmed to reporters Sunday night that Kubiak told them he was stepping down.
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Kubiak spoke with his players immediately after Sunday’s 24-6 home win over the Raiders, but did not want to answer questions from the media after the game.

Todays about the team and the players, Kubiak said. Ill address my situation tomorrow, but I did have a really good moment with the players and told them how proud of them I was.

Kubiak, 55, was diagnosed with a complex migraine condition following an Oct. 9 loss to the Falcons. He had an overnight stay in a hospital and missed Denver’s 21-13 loss at San Diego four days later.
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That episode came three years after Kubiak collapsed on the sideline after suffering a ministroke as coach of the Texans. He was walking off the field at halftime of a game against the Colts when he collapsed.

Kubiak was the offensive coordinator of the Ravens in 2014 before getting hired as the Broncos head coach last season. He led the Broncos to a Super Bowl championship in his first year, but the Broncos went 9-7 this season and missed the playoffs.

Eight of Detroits nine victories were the result of fourth-quarter comebacks, which says two things: 1) Caldwell deserves credit for the resiliency exhibited by his squad; 2) The Lions were overachievers much of the year considering their early-season defensive woes and problems rushing the football that date to Barry Sandersretirement in the last century (1999).

Steelers’ Antonio Brown torches Miami on two 50-plus yard TDs

The AFC wild-card matchup between the Steelers and Dolphins is quickly turning into the Antonio Brown show.

Brown scored two touchdowns on receptions of 50 yards or more on Sunday. His second score was his thirdreception, and gave him 119 yards with time still left in the first quarter.

Even more impressive, Brown becamethe fourthreceiver ever with twotouchdowns over 50 yards in a playoff game, and the first since Randy Moss did it against the Saints in 2001.He’s just the third player to do it in the Super Bowl Era, joining Moss and Ricky Sanders for the Redskins in the 1987 season.

His first touchdown, a 50-yarder, put the Steelers up 7-0. It was the first postseason score of his career, the first time in seven games. He one-upped himself on his second touchdown, going 62 yards to the house.

The Dolphins might want to figure out a way to guard Brown if they want to stay in this game. McDowell has substantial character issues, and they’re likely to come to light during the draft process and become the reason he slips outside the top 10. Still, he’s too talented to fall out of the top 20. The Redskins still could use more interior defensive line help.
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‘Whenever you can feel like, ‘No matter what happens here, our offense has our back,’ it’s just amazing,’ said Freeney, who enjoyed that same luxury in Indianapolis when Peyton Manning was quarterbacking. ‘You can go out there playing confident and loose knowing that we have a great offense.

‘Matt moves that ball around and gets everybody involved. Obviously, that has a lot to do with Shanahan and what his scheme is. It’s like people keep coming off the sideline. It seems like we have 15 tight ends and three running backs and 15 receivers.’
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Freeney’s conference title game debut came during his second NFL season with the 2003 Colts and ended with a loss at New England. How special that opportunity was didn’t dawn on a 23-year-old Freeney (‘I didn’t know anything,’ he admits).

Joseph added three more hits, a home run and three RBIs.

Phillies trio Odubel Herrera, Aaron Altherr and Tommy Joseph stalked the plate for nine combined hits in an 11-4 win against the hapless Braves and Bartolo Colon. Herrera went 3 for 5 with a home run, two doubles, three runs scored and two RBIs. He became the first Phillies player to record multiple doubles in three straight games.

Altherr went 3 for 4 with two runs scored, a home run and three RBIs. Joseph added three more hits, a home run and three RBIs.
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It appeared Carlos Martinez (4-5) was going to complete another dominant start, but the Cardinals ace, after maneuvering through six scoreless innings, gave up all four of his earned runs in the seventh inning to lose 4-2 against the Reds.

Red Sox (31-25) at Yankees (32-22) 7:05 p.m. ET — The storied rivals kick off a three-game series with an intriguing pitching duel between the surging Drew Pomeranz (5-3, 4.24 ERA) and the struggling Masahiro Tanaka (5-5, 6.34 ERA). Both teams have been inconsistent lately, which has allowed the rest of the AL East to gain some ground. Still, this series could serve as a nice springboard for the team that comes out on top.

I used a common sense pitch count in my head, not the exact number, he said.

Cox didn’t care, beyond being known to ask Mazzone on occasion what the real pitch count was for a hurler who’d been in the game awhile.
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Then there was John Smoltz.

Smoltz began the 1991 season 2-11, before going 12-2 over the rest of the season and helping carry the Braves to the 1991 World Series. Smoltz famously went to see sports psychologist Jack Llewellyn at the All-Star break that year. But Mazzone said Cox is the No. 1 reason Smoltz is in the Hall of Fame.

Mike Ditka blasts ‘a—hole’ journalists hounding Tom Brady over Donald Trump

Iron Mike Ditka never disappoints.

Nearly a year after he called President Barack Obama the “worst” president ever, the outspoken ESPN analyst ripped sports journalists concerned about Tom Brady’s friendship with President Donald Trump, Obama (again) and protesting 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

The Redskins used a first-round pick on TCU’s Josh Doctson last year, but there’s no guarantee he can shake off his tricky rookie foot injury (Achilles’) and be a reliable producer in his second season. Calling upon him to be a No. 1 who can both stretch the field and finish in the red zone is unreasonable.

So is assuming Reed, with his history of concussions and a recent shoulder issue, can be counted on to provide an athletic mismatch over a full season. That makes Davis, 33, coming off a resurgence and coming with a much cheaper price tag than that of Garcon or Jackson, a no-brainer to re-sign.

Going into the 2017 season with Doctson and Crowder as the top two returning wide receivers would set up Cousins for post-contract regression. Cousins has built good downfield chemistry with both Garcon and Jackson. It would be impossible — in short term, at least — for him to re-create it with a newcomer. Crowder was a key go-to guy for Cousins, too, but he’s better suited to have impact inside.

Here’s the rub: The market is inflated for veteran wideouts. The Redskins might have no choice but to be lukewarm on retaining Jackson, because his big-play flair will attract many teams in need of a pure home-run hitter. He likely will be well overpaid, around $10 million per season. Garcon, for some of the same reasons Washington loves him, is set up to get $9 million-plus from one of several suitors.texans_138

Here’s a look at 10 possible options for the Browns at No. 1.

Game Mens John Johnson Jersey Pro: This is the best option as of now. Garrett is considered the top pick across several mock drafts — including Sporting News — and he’s a 6-5, 270-pound freak pass rusher off the edge who had 31 career sacks with Texas A&M. Keep in mind what AP Defensive Rookie of the Year Joey Bosa did for San Diego in 2016. Garrett could have that kind of impact. Quarterback also wouldn’t be a question if the Browns get a chance to pursue Buffalo’s Tyrod Taylor.

Con: Garrett said on Dec. 27 he’d “like not to go anywhere cold.” Well, it’s cold in Cleveland. Very cold. Drafting Garrett would bring inevitable comparisons to Penn State’s Courtney Brown, who the Browns took No. 1 in 2000. Brown had 17 sacks over five seasons with Cleveland.

After forcing another Patriots three-and-out, the Falcons made New England pay … quickly. Matt Ryan fired an absolute beauty of a pass to tight end Austin Hooper, who was working against man coverage in the end zone.

Shanahan has had frustrating moments with Manziel and Robert Griffin III, but he just finished making a masterpiece of Matt Ryan. Garoppolo is more of the tough pocket passer Shanahan needs, and he’s also smart and athletic enough to handle all of his concepts, much like Ryan.

Game Mens Jason Taylor Jersey The Jets’ contracts, while large on the surface, were for the most part designed to be two-year deals, most of which were signed in 2015. This has left the Jets with the most flexibility in the NFL to create cap space; flexibility they will use this year.

Nevada sportsbooks join Patriots as big Super Bowl 51 winners

The Patriots weren’t the only winners in Super Bowl 51.

James Reimer Game Jersey Nevada sportsbooks handled $138.48 million in wagers on Sunday’s Pats-Falcons matchup, winning $10.93 million off bettors, the state’s Gaming Control Board announced Monday.

The other father is skeptical and says, If that’s a Buick, then my kid is Cam Newton.

Suddenly the man’s son turns into the Carolina Panthers quarterback, who hilariously starts to dominate his small opponents.

As another Buick pulls up to the field, Newton tells the pee-wee coach, That’s a good looking Buick right there.

If that’s a Buick, then I’m a supermodel, the coach laughs, before transforming into Kerr.

Buick also shared a behind-the-scenes video, showing how the commercial was made.

The 60-second ad will air in the first quarter of Sunday’s big game.

Limited Daryl Washington Jersey The other staples of the Super Bowl party schedule were in full force, including hot tickets to Leather and Laces, ESPN and Maxim. The bars and clubs downtown and midtown were buzzing as the city prepared for the game.

Anywhere Patriots, Falcons, Texans and NFL fans in general wanted to celebrate the Super Bowl being in town, they were given Texas-sized Southern hospitality. Houston really rolled out the red carpet for its media and other thousands of extra visitors.

Whether one wanted to mingle with big-time athletes and celebrities or just chill with a family full of fans, Houston offered a rainbow of fun with sunny, perfect weather to boot.

The NFL should be thrilled about picking Houston and NRG Stadium again. Unlike New York or San Francisco, there’s a tight-knit feel to everything. That kind of warm welcome deserves a giddyap. And another Super Bowl very soon.

With Cueto seeking shelter from the ump, no fisticuffs ensued.

Cueto was peeved at Grandal because he thought Grandal benefited from tipped pitches when he slapped one he had no business swinging at for a two-run double in the first inning.

While Cueto claimed the ball slipped out of his hand before sailing toward Grandal’s face in the third, he said of his first-inning pitch that Grandal golfed all the way to the wall, I’m not going to use that as an excuse, but they were relaying signs.

Cueto never recovered, as he was knocked around for five runs, all earned, on eight hits through six innings in his worst outing of the season, and the Giants sunk to a woeful 17-25.

Mets ace Jacob deGrom spun seven scoreless innings with nine strikeouts to lead New York to a 3-0 win against the Angels. The right-hander is now 3-1 with a 3.56 ERA this season. This win snapped a seven-game losing streak for the Mets.

Evan Longoria upped his average from .232 to .249 Friday by collecting four hits with two runs scored and an RBI in a 5-4 win against the Yankees. Longoria also plated the go-ahead run in the bottom of the eighth inning.

Limited Mens Ronnie Lott Jersey Because baseball’s best player, Mike Trout, is producing his own version of Sgt. Pepper’s. The best in the industry is somehow getting better, as hard as that is to imagine.
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The Mets have made the playoffs the past two seasons after big late-season runs, but consider that those teams were over .500 after 44 games. They had built a cushion that isn’t there now.

The Packers don’t like to spend money where they don’t have to, though

Letting Hyde walk was a little surprising, but not re-signing guard T.J. Lang was really surprising — and controversial. According to Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, some Packers players were miffed that the team lowballed Lang, who played through a hip injury all last year. He later signed a three-year, $28.5 million deal with the Lions.

“The tough part is, as you get older in this league and you see guys leave — and you have to ask why, a lot,” Rodgers told ESPN Wisconsin’s Jason Wilde. “It’s tough to lose veteran leadership — Julius, T.J., Micah, John Kuhn last year. We’ve replaced them — but the leadership part is tough, and I think that’s an undervalued part of our league that we need guys to step up.”

The Packers don’t like to spend money where they don’t have to, though. They could have invested in another major signing this offseason to bolster a flagging defense. Instead …

Now, keep in mind that the bartender has nothing to go off but “Two,” this is the only information he is given. He saw “two” from Gronk and was like “I got this.” Suddenly the drinks are up.

How did he know to make two discreet drinks with different mixers based on the number two? We don’t know. He’s probably a warlock or something and don’t you dare pretend that high fantasy is out of place in this setting because shit’s about to get a whole lot weirder than a warlock bartender, let me tell you.

So Gronk is in a new relationship it seems, and what do all new couples do together? Yes, that’s right — they wash a car together. He also smacks her butt, because reasons.
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