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14 minutes ago

Jaylen Brown leads Celtics' second-half turnaround as Boston beats Miami Heat to reach brink of advancing to NBA Finals

MIAMI -- The Boston Celtics found themselves trailing the Miami Heat by five, on the road, at halftime of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals on Wednesday night. And yet, the Celtics felt just fine. They couldn't have played much worse in the first half, committing 10 turnovers and giving up nine offensive rebounds to Miami -- which allowed the Heat to take 14 extra shots. "We weren't playing our best, in a lot of ways," Celtics coach Ime Udoka said. "Sometimes, all it takes is one guy getting back to his average game." No one was playing worse than Jaylen Brown. He went 2-for-7 from the field, committed four turnovers -- all in the first quarter -- and was the face for many of Boston's struggles early on. Then the second half started. And, as it played out, Brown wound up being the face of the team's turnaround. Brown's 19-point, 0-turnover second half -- coupled with an 18-point second half from Jayson Tatum -- allowed Boston to finally...
14 minutes ago
1 hour ago

Tyler Bozak completes stunning comeback with overtime goal as St. Louis Blues force Game 6

Tyler Bozak's goal at 3:38 of overtime gave the St. Louis Blues a 5-4 comeback win in Game 5 on Wednesday night, avoiding elimination and forcing Game 6 back at home on Friday night. The Blues, who trail in the second-round series 3-2, rallied twice to stun the Avalanche, who were 56 seconds away from their first Western Conference finals appearance since 2002. Blues forward Robert Thomas scored to force overtime, where Bozak won it. "Just a resilient group of guys. Got down. Didn't want the season to be over. Fought hard and got some big goals late," said Bozak. Bozak scored his second goal of the playoffs on a long slap shot that beat goalie Darcy Kuemper 25 saves. The veteran center had just 7 minutes and 16 seconds of ice time in the game. "I just got a little bounce up top and saw a lane to the net. In overtime, there's definitely no such thing as a bad shot. Just tried to get it through on the traffic. All I know is that it went in, and...
1 hour ago
2 hours ago

Colin Kaepernick completes workout with Las Vegas Raiders, source says

Colin Kaepernick, who last played professional football in 2016 -- the year he started kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial injustice -- worked out Wednesday for the Las Vegas Raiders, a league source told ESPN. It marked Kaepernick's first workout with an NFL team since being exiled, and it was the first time the former star quarterback visited with a team since he flew to Seattle to meet with the Seahawks in May 2017, before they passed on the opportunity to sign him. Kaepernick played at the University of Nevada, Reno, the only school to offer him a scholarship. Currently, the pro team in Nevada is the only one in the NFL that has given the civil rights activist another opportunity. Raiders owner Mark Davis is following in the spirit of his late father, Al Davis, who provided many opportunities, such as hiring the NFL's first Black head coach (Art Shell) and its first woman chief executive (Amy Trask) in the modern era. The elder Davis...
2 hours ago
2 hours ago

New York Yankees put slugger Giancarlo Stanton on 10-day injured list because of sore ankle

NEW YORK -- Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton is on the injured list for the fourth straight season. Stanton was placed on the 10-day IL on Wednesday as the ailing Yankees made a flurry of roster moves less than an hour before their 2-0 victory over Baltimore in the series finale. Manager Aaron Boone later clarified the injury to the star's right lower leg was an inflamed ankle after the team had announced it was a strained calf strain. "He is feeling pretty good," Boone said before the game. "I think we hope that he said something early enough to where this doesn't become long." New York also put struggling reliever Jonathan Loaisiga on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to May 23, with right shoulder inflammation -- the latest blow to a depleted bullpen that had shined most of the season. "Similar to what he dealt with last year. Probably not as severe. So, just feel like it's probably something that as a precaution, we need to be...
2 hours ago
May 25

New York Yankees put slugger Giancarlo Stanton on 10-day injured list because of calf strain

NEW YORK -- Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton is on the injured list for the fourth straight season. Stanton was placed on the 10-day IL with a strained right calf Wednesday as the ailing Yankees made a flurry of roster moves less than an hour before their 2-0 victory over Baltimore in the series finale. "He is feeling pretty good," manager Aaron Boone said. "I think we hope that he said something early enough to where this doesn't become long." New York also put struggling reliever Jonathan Loaisiga on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to May 23, with right shoulder inflammation -- the latest blow to a depleted bullpen that had shined most of the season. "Similar to what he dealt with last year. Probably not as severe. So, just feel like it's probably something that as a precaution, we need to be smart here and take a couple weeks and hopefully that's all it is," Boone said. "We believe it's something hopefully minor. We're going to...
May 25
May 25

New York Yankees put slugger Giancarlo Stanton on 10-day injured list with calf strain

The New York Yankees placed outfielder Giancarlo Stanton on the 10-day injured list with a right calf strain Wednesday, a day after he left a game early against the Baltimore Orioles in the seventh inning. Stanton had been replaced by pinch-hitter Estevan Florial in the seventh inning of the Yankees' 7-6 11-inning victory on Tuesday due to calf tightness. The Yankees also placed right-handed reliever Jonathan Loaisiga on the 15-day injured list because of shoulder inflammation. In other moves, outfielder Joey Gallo was reinstated from the COVID-19 injured list, left-hander JP Sears and right-hander David McKay were recalled from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and catcher Rob Brantly was designated for assignment. Stanton leads the Yankees, who lead the American League East, with 35 RBIs this season. He also has 11 home runs, which is tied for second on the team, with Anthony Rizzo, behind Aaron Judge, who...
May 25
May 25

Rafael Nadal, 35, reaches 300 career Grand Slam match wins at French Open, 'the most important tournament of the year for me'

PARIS -- Rafael Nadal reached 300 career Grand Slam match victories by defeating Corentin Moutet 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 in the second round at Roland Garros. The only real blip for 13-time French Open champion Nadal on Wednesday night in Court Philippe Chatrier came near the end, when he was broken by the 139th-ranked Frenchman while serving for the match at 5-3. But Nadal broke right back to improve to 107-3 at Roland Garros. In his post-match interview on the court, Nadal, 35, was a bit emotional and heartfelt. Rather than speak to the personal achievement, he took his opportunity to expound on how special tennis is once again with fans in the stands. "It's so important for the world to see games," he said. "The best events in the world with full crowds, that is so important for the players and for the fans and for the tournaments. "Thank you again for supporting our sport." Nadal joined Roger Federer (369), Serena Williams...
May 25
May 25

Colin Kaepernick working out for Las Vegas Raiders on Wednesday, sources say

Colin Kaepernick, who last played professional football in 2016 -- the year he started kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial injustice -- is scheduled to work out Wednesday for the Las Vegas Raiders, league sources told ESPN. It will mark Kaepernick's first workout with an NFL team since being exiled, and it will be the first time the former star quarterback visits with a team since he flew to Seattle to meet with the Seahawks in May 2017 before they passed on the opportunity to sign him. Kaepernick played at the University of Nevada, Reno, the only school to offer him a scholarship. Currently, the pro team in Nevada is the only one in the NFL that has given the civil rights activist another opportunity. Raiders owner Mark Davis is following in the spirit of his late father, Al Davis, who provided many opportunities, such as hiring the NFL's first Black head coach (Art Shell) and its first woman chief executive (Amy Trask) in the modern era. He also...
May 25
May 25

Colin Kaepernick to work out for Las Vegas Raiders on Wednesday, sources say

Colin Kaepernick, who last played professional football in 2016 -- the year he started kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial injustice -- is scheduled to work out Wednesday for the Las Vegas Raiders, league sources told ESPN. It will mark Kaepernick's first workout with an NFL team since being exiled, and it will be the first time the former star quarterback visits with a team since he flew to Seattle to meet with the Seahawks in May 2017 before they passed on the opportunity to sign him. Kaepernick played at the University of Nevada, Reno, the only school to offer him a scholarship. Currently, the pro team in Nevada is the only one in the NFL that has given the civil rights activist another opportunity. Raiders owner Mark Davis is following in the spirit of his late father, Al Davis, who provided many opportunities, such as hiring the NFL's first Black head coach (Art Shell) and its first woman chief executive (Amy Trask) in the modern era. He also...
May 25
May 25

Colin Kaepernick to work out for Las Vegas Raiders this week, sources say

Colin Kaepernick, who last played professional football in 2016 -- the year he started kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial injustice -- is scheduled to work out this week for the Las Vegas Raiders, league sources told ESPN. It will mark Kaepernick's first workout with an NFL team since being exiled, and it will be the first time the former star quarterback visits with a team since he flew to Seattle to meet with the Seattle Seahawks in May 2017 before they passed on the opportunity to sign him. Kaepernick played at the University of Nevada, Reno, which was the only school to offer him a scholarship, and now the pro team in Nevada is the only one in the NFL that is open to giving the civil rights activist another opportunity. Raiders owner Mark Davis is following in the spirit of his late father Al Davis, who was active in civil rights. Al Davis became the first NFL owner in the modern era to hire a Black head coach in Art Shell, a female chief...
May 25
May 25

Judge denies NFL's motions to dismiss Jon Gruden's lawsuit, move it to arbitration

LAS VEGAS -- A Nevada judge ruled in favor of former Las Vegas Raiders coach Jon Gruden on two motions Wednesday, opening the possibility of a jury trial on his "tortious interference" claim that the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell selectively leaked Gruden's emails to force his removal on Oct. 11. Judge Nancy L. Allf denied the NFL's motion to compel arbitration as well as the league's motion to dismiss the case outright. The suit will now go to trial unless a settlement is reached. Allf gave no timeline, though, for the next proceeding. The NFL said in a statement given to multiple media outlets that it would appeal.  "We believe Coach Gruden's claims should have been compelled to arbitration, and we will file an appeal of the Court's determination. The Court's denial of our motion to dismiss is not a determination on the merits of Coach Gruden's lawsuit, which, as we have said from the outset, lacks a basis in law and fact and proceeds from a false premise -- neither...
May 25
May 25

NFL quarterbacks Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen preview The Match, say to expect plenty of trash talk

NFL quarterbacks Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers will face off against Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen in Capital One's The Match on June 1 on TNT. The four quarterbacks participated in a media event Wednesday, and they showed a glimpse of what fans might expect on the television broadcast of the 12-hole exhibition that seemingly will feature a ton of trash talk. Brady and Rodgers were paired against each other in the previous event, with Brady partnered with Phil Mickelson and Rodgers with Bryson DeChambeau. The two are now tasked with taking on the younger quarterback duo in what is being billed as experience versus youth. "I know they tried to make it old guys versus young guys, but I said it when we were doing our chipping [contest] that they showed yesterday," Rodgers said. "I said, 'Who thought about this, you want to put the two best guys against the two worst guys?' And that's not just conjecture, that's, like, facts." Rodgers...
May 25
May 25

St. Louis Blues' Craig Berube says racist comments directed at Colorado Avalanche's Nazem Kadri are 'in no way acceptable'

St. Louis Blues coach Craig Berube, after originally declining to comment on the matter, said Wednesday that the racist comments and threats directed at Colorado Avalanche center Nazem Kadri are "in no way acceptable." "I just want to comment on my 'no comment' the other day," Berube said before Game 5 in Denver. "I'm not on social media. I was aware of a threat made to Nazem. Not the racist stuff. In no way is it acceptable by the St. Louis Blues or anybody else for him to have to go through that." Kadri, who is Muslim and of Lebanese descent, was the subject of racist comments and threats following his collision with Blues goalie Jordan Binnington in Game 3 of their second-round series. Binnington, who had been outstanding in five postseason games, suffered a lower-body injury in a collision with Kadri and Blues defenseman Calle Rosen. Binnington has been ruled out for the rest of the series. Local law enforcement was called to...
May 25
May 25

Carlos Alcaraz saves match point to reach third round of French Open

Rising star Carlos Alcaraz saved a match point in the fourth set and erased an early deficit in the fifth to overcome Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-1, 6-7 (7), 5-7, 7-6 (2), 6-4 to reach the third round of the French Open.  The sixth-seeded Alcaraz grabbed six of the final seven games, and the last half-dozen points, to finish off the second-round victory that lasted more than 4 1/2 hours at Roland Garros. Alcaraz is just 19 but arrived in Paris with a lot of expectations -- of his own and of others -- based on his breakthrough season that includes a tour-leading four titles. He is the youngest player to break into the top 10 of the ATP rankings since Rafael Nadal in 2005. En route to the Madrid Open title on red clay earlier this month, Alcaraz became the first man to beat both Nadal and Novak Djokovic in the same tournament on that surface. But he was quite close to making a quicker-than-expected exit against fellow Spaniard Ramos-Vinolas, a...
May 25
May 25

Jayson Tatum and Boston Celtics approaching Game 5 against Miami Heat with 'more sense of urgency, especially to start'

MIAMI -- In three of the first four games of the Eastern Conference finals, the team leading at the end of the first quarter has come out on top each time. So, as the Boston Celtics prepare to take on the Miami Heat in Game 5 at FTX Arena on Wednesday night, with the series knotted at two games apiece, they are aware they need to zero in on a strong start to this game to come away with a desperately needed road victory. "Whatever happened last game is last game, regardless if we won by 25 or 2," Celtics star Jayson Tatum said after Boston's shootaround Wednesday morning. "They all count as one [win]. So we shouldn't feel any better about ourselves because we blew them out [ in Game 4]. "And I think we shouldn't relax. We should kind of look at it as a new series, and tonight is a must-win game. And I think when you approach something as a must-win and have more sense of urgency, especially to start, I think that's how we should approach tonight,...
May 25
May 25

Cory Zeidman, former WSOP bracelet winner, arrested on charges of fraud, money laundering related to $25 million sports betting scheme

A professional poker player was arrested Wednesday on charges of fraud and money laundering related to a sports betting scheme that brought in more than $25 million from alleged victims. Cory Zeidman, of Boca Raton, Florida, faces federal charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and mail fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering as part of the scheme that spanned from 2004 to 2020, according to a two-count indictment out of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. A law enforcement source confirmed to ESPN that Zeidman, 61, is a professional poker player who won a bracelet at the 2012 World Series of Poker. According to the federal indictment unsealed Wednesday, Zeidman and his unnamed co-conspirators received more than $25 million in interstate wire transfers and private commercial carriers over 16 years from victims who were led to believe that the organization had privileged information that made betting on sporting events a...
May 25
May 25

Cory Zeidman arrested on charges of fraud, money laundering related to $25 million sports betting scheme

A Florida man was arrested Wednesday on charges of fraud and money laundering related to a sports betting scheme that brought in more than $25 million from alleged victims. Cory Zeidman, 61, of Boca Raton, Florida, faces federal charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and mail fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering as part of the scheme that spanned from 2004 to 2020, according to a two-count indictment out of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. According to the federal indictment unsealed Wednesday, Zeidman and his unnamed co-conspirators received more than $25 million in interstate wire transfers and private commercial carriers over 16 years from victims who were led to believe that the organization had privileged information that made betting on sporting events a no-risk proposition. As part of the scheme, Zeidman and his co-conspirators placed misleading radio ads in various U.S. markets, claiming to have a "sophisticated...
May 25
May 25

Colorado Rockies place Kris Bryant back on IL because of back strain

Kris Bryant's balky back has landed him back on the Colorado Rockies' injured list. The Rockies announced Wednesday that they placed the outfielder on the 10-day IL because of a lower-back strain. The move was made retroactive to Monday. He had just returned from the injured list on Saturday after missing 21 games because of back pain. He played two games against the New York Mets but hasn't played since. Bryant, who signed a seven-year, $182 million free-agent deal in March, is still looking for his first home run with the Rockies. He is now batting .278 with four RBIs and 15 strikeouts in 74 plate appearances. The Rockies called up right-handed pitcher Ryan Feltner from Triple-A Albuquerque on Wednesday to take Bryant's roster spot and gave Feltner his fourth career start as they wrapped up a three-game set in Pittsburgh. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
May 25
May 25

Top international basketball prospect Henri Veesaar commits to Arizona Wildcats

Top international basketball prospect Henri Veesaar has committed to the  Arizona Wildcats, he told ESPN on Wednesday. "I believe in [coach] Tommy Lloyd's philosophy and how he coaches," Veesaar said. "I've had my eyes on playing college basketball for some time now, and I believe that Arizona is a great fit to make a jump between youth and professional sport." The 18-year-old 7-footer from Estonia is considered arguably the most promising European prospect committing to the college route in the class of 2022. He was identified as a 15-year-old at the FIBA U16 European Championship, where he had a strong performance playing up a year on the competition, helping him land a contract with European powerhouse Real Madrid, the gold standard of junior programs on the continent. Veesaar has steadily progressed over the past three years, winning the prestigious Adidas Next Generation Tournament in 2021 and earning a call-up to represent the Estonian senior national team as a...
May 25
May 25

Top international basketball prospect Henri Veesaar commits to Arizona Wildcats

Top international basketball prospect Henri Veesaar has committed to Arizona, he told ESPN on Wednesday. "I believe in Tommy Lloyd's philosophy and how he coaches," Veesaar said. "I've had my eyes on playing college basketball for some time now, and I believe that Arizona is a great fit to make a jump between youth and professional sport." The 7-foot, 18-year old is considered arguably the most promising European prospect committing to the college route in the class of 2022. He was identified as a 15-year old at the FIBA U16 European Championship, where he had a strong performance playing up a year on the competition, helping him land a contract with European powerhouse Real Madrid, the gold standard of junior programs on the continent. Veesaar has steadily progressed over the past three years, winning the prestigious adidas Next Generation Tournament in 2021 and earning a call up to represent the Estonian senior national team already as a 17-year old, making him the...
May 25
May 25

Coco Gauff, Victoria Azarenka advance to third round at French Open

American teenager Coco Gauff has advanced to the third round of the French Open by beating Alison van Uytvanck of Belgium 6-1, 7-6 (4). Two-time Grand Slam champion Victoria Azarenka of Belarus also reached the third round Wednesday in Paris, but US Open champion Emma Raducanu and No. 4 Maria Sakkari went out in the second round. American  Sloane Stephens came from behind to defeat No. 26 Sorana Cirstea 3-6, 6-2, 6-0 and advance. Gauff twice fell behind by two games in the second set, but the 18-year-old broke back both times and then forced three errors from the 28-year-old van Uytvanck in the tiebreaker. Gauff is trying to improve on her quarterfinal run at the French Open last year -- her best result at a major. Gauff is the youngest player remaining in the draw and celebrated her high school graduation this week with pictures at the Eiffel Tower. Van Uytvanck's best result at a Grand Slam tournament was reaching the...
May 25
May 25

Cherelle Griner, wife of Brittney Griner, says President Joe Biden the 'one person that can go get her'

Cherelle Griner, the wife of Brittney Griner, said she last heard her spouse's voice on Feb. 17, the day the WNBA star was detained in Russia. Now, Cherelle Griner said she hopes her voice reaches President Joe Biden. "There is one person that can go get her, and that's our president," Griner told Angela Rye in an interview that is airing Wednesday on ESPN. "He has that power. You know, I'm just like, 'Why are we not using it? Like, urgently, use it.' We're expecting him to use his power to get it done." Brittney Griner, a center for the Phoenix Mercury, was detained at a Moscow airport after Russian authorities said a search of her luggage revealed vape cartridges that contained hashish oil, which is derived from cannabis. The crime carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. The Biden administration has said Griner, a 31-year-old two-time Olympian for the United States, is being wrongfully detained. Cherelle Griner, who earlier this month graduated from...
May 25
May 25

Victoria Azarenka moves on at French Open with win over Andrea Petkovic

Two-time Grand Slam champion Victoria Azarenka of Belarus has reached the third round at the French Open, while US Open champion Emma Raducanu is out in the second round. Azarenka, seeded 15th, had only 13 unforced errors to Andrea Petkovic's 42 in a 6-1, 7-6 (3) win. Raducanu, 19, lost to Aliaksandra Sasnovich of Belarus 3-6, 6-1, 6-1 to end her tournament debut after failing to convert on five break-point chances at 1-1 in the third set. Raducanu's loss means all four reigning Grand Slam champions have been eliminated by the second round -- the first time that has happened since the 2014 French Open, according to the WTA. 2021 French Open champion Barbora Krejcikova was knocked out in the first round, and reigning Wimbledon and Australian Open champion Ash Barty retired in March. Azarenka has twice won the Australian Open and was a semifinalist at Roland Garros in 2013. Petkovic, 34, reached the French Open semifinals in 2014 but has...
May 25
May 25

Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks eye another playoff shocker after avoiding sweep by Warriors: 'Going to believe until the end'

DALLAS --  Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic doesn't necessarily see any honor in avoiding being swept in the Western Conference finals. He remains focused on beating the Golden State Warriors in the series, regardless of the long odds. The Mavs are attempting to become the first team in NBA history to overcome a 3-0 deficit to win a playoff series, a feat 146 others have failed to accomplish. Dallas took a step in that direction with a 119-109 win in Tuesday's Game 4 at the American Airlines Center. "I mean, I still believe we can win, you know," Doncic said. "Swept or not swept, in the end, if you lose, you lose. Don't matter how many we win. We have to go game by game. We're going to believe until the end." Dallas has already pulled off one shocker in this postseason, rallying from 2-0 and 3-2 deficits to eliminate the No. 1 overall seed Phoenix Suns in the conference semifinals. The Mavs wrapped up that series by routing the Suns by 33...
May 25
May 24

Herschel Walker wins Georgia's Republican Senate primary

Former Heisman Trophy winner Herschel Walker won Georgia's GOP Senate primary on Tuesday. Walker defeated five fellow Republicans: Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black, former Trump administration official and Navy veteran Latham Saddler, retired brigadier general Jon McColumn, contractor and Air Force veteran Kelvin King and former state Rep. Josh Clark. Walker is a political newcomer but has nearly unmatched name recognition in Georgia from his days as a college football running back. He led the University of Georgia football team to a national title during the 1980 season and won the Heisman Trophy in 1982. Former President Donald Trump, a close friend of Walker's, backed his run. Walker's electability was questioned due to business dealings and his history of violence against women. Walker has been open about his long struggle with mental illness and acknowledged violent urges. He won the primary despite skipping debates with his Republican opponents...
May 24
May 24

Sources: Pittsburgh Steelers expected to promote Omar Khan to take over as GM

PITTSBURGH -- The Steelers are expected to name Omar Khan as their next general manager, sources told ESPN's Adam Schefter. After interviewing more than a dozen candidates for the general manager position, the Steelers selected Khan, who has been with the organization for more than two decades. He started with the Steelers as a football operations coordinator in 2001 and was promoted to director of football administration in 2011. He spent the past six seasons as the vice president of football and business administration. In that role, he was responsible for managing the Steelers' salary cap. Khan was considered a favorite during the exhaustive search that also included interviews with Brandon Hunt, the Steelers' director of pro scouting. Outgoing general manager Kevin Colbert announced he was stepping down following the 2021 season, but he left open the possibility to stay on in an advisory role after more than two decades with the Steelers. The Steelers, meanwhile, have...
May 24
May 24

Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic, Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, Dallas guard Luka Doncic named to All-NBA first team

Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic, Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo and Dallas guard Luka Doncic highlighted the league's All-NBA team announced on Tuesday night. Jokic, the 2021-22 NBA MVP, was not the leading vote getter for the team. That honor went to Antetokounmpo who received all 100 votes for the first team at one of the forward spots. Jokic and Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid, who finished second in the MVP voting, split votes as the first-team center. Both players were eligible at forward, and some voters opted to put both players on the first team that way. Embiid made the second team at the center spot. Antetokounmpo was the only unanimous selection, and he becomes the first player over the last 50 years to be a unanimous selection to the All-NBA first team in four consecutive seasons, according to ESPN Stats & Information research. Doncic picked up his third first-team nod prior to turning 24,...
May 24
May 24

Warriors' Steve Kerr delivers impassioned plea for gun control after Texas school shooting: 'We can't get numb to this'

DALLAS -- Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr did not want to talk about basketball in his pregame news conference heading into Game 4 of the Western Conference finals against the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night. Basketball, he said, didn't matter. "Since we left shootaround, 14 children were killed, 400 miles from here. And a teacher," Kerr said, referring to the mass shooting that occurred at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, earlier Tuesday. The death toll has since risen to at least 19 children and two adults, according to a spokesman for the Texas Department of Public Safety. The 18-year-old suspect, a student at Uvalde High School who entered the elementary school with a handgun and possibly a rifle, is also dead, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said. It was not immediately clear how many people were wounded, but the school district's police chief, Pete Arredondo, said there were "several injuries.'' "When are we going to do something?" Kerr yelled,...
May 24
May 24

New York Jets QB Zach Wilson, now at 221 pounds, says he feels like 'better athlete with more weight on'

The New York Jets expect to see a bigger and better Zach Wilson in 2022. He already has checked the "bigger" box. After finishing last season at 208 pounds, the second-year quarterback reported to OTA practices this week at 221 pounds -- a designed weight gain that occurred with the help of a nutritionist and a chef. And some serious will power. "I do have a sweet tooth pretty bad, so that's been a challenge," Wilson told reporters Tuesday after the Jets' first open practice. Listed at 6-foot-2, Wilson has eliminated cookies, cakes and other sugary temptations from his carefully scripted diet. He said the keys are proportion management and eating at the right time, resulting in what he called "good weight." "I feel better for sure," he said. "The energy, the ability to have that stamina throughout the whole practice, is better. In the long run, once we get into a game when we actually get hit and tackled, having more size on me will help." One of Wilson's best...
May 24
May 24

Tim Anderson addresses Josh Donaldson incident, 'could care less about the suspension'

CHICAGO -- White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson says there was no inside joke between he and New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson regarding Donaldson calling Anderson "Jackie" over the weekend, in reference to Jackie Robinson. Anderson, speaking publicly on Tuesday for the first time since Major League Baseball punished Donaldson with a one-game suspension, said the two haven't had a relationship since the first time he called him Jackie, back in 2019. "He did say that, and I told him we never have to talk again," Anderson recalled. "I don't speak to you, you don't speak to me, if that's how you want to refer to me. I know, he knew exactly what he was doing because I already told him." Anderson claims while Donaldson played for the Minnesota Twins, the two had no contact, but that changed after a hard slide into third base by the shortstop in a game in Chicago between the two teams. The two players had words that night and then again...
May 24
May 24

NFL discussing future of Pro Bowl, including possible elimination of the tackle game

ATLANTA -- NFL owners are discussing the future of the Pro Bowl at this week's league meetings. The league has spoken to players and NFL teams and is now exploring alternatives to the weeklong Pro Bowl celebration, which could include the elimination of the traditional tackle game, commissioner Roger Goodell confirmed Tuesday. No vote is needed to approve a change. The NFL, while exploring this with players and television partners, hopes to have a decision this summer. Goodell says the NFL will consider turning the Pro Bowl into a celebration of players rather than playing an actual game. "I think the conclusion [of discussions] was that the game itself doesn't work," Goodell said Tuesday. "And we need to find another way to celebrate our players." The annual all-star game, broadcast on ESPN, has suffered in recent years because of players backing out and the lack of competition due to injury concerns. The NFL has played a traditional Pro Bowl game in some fashion since 1938....
May 24
May 24

Chicago Bulls' Zach Lavine has successful left knee surgery; full recovery expected

Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine underwent arthroscopic knee surgery on his left knee on Tuesday in Los Angeles. The team announced the surgery was successful and that LaVine is expected to make a full recovery. LaVine, who will become an unrestricted free agent this summer, managed discomfort in his knee for most of the second half of the season after he landed awkwardly grabbing a rebound against the Golden State Warriors on Jan. 14. LaVine flew to Los Angeles just before the All-Star break to visit Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who performed LaVine's ACL surgery in 2017 and Tuesday's procedure. He received a platelet-rich plasma therapy and a cortisone shot, and had fluid drained from his left knee, to continue playing the rest of the season. He missed 13 of the team's final 43 games for maintenance on his knee. "I have to go into the offseason and figure out how to get back to 100 percent, I played this year not at 100 percent. [I will] figure out the best plan,...
May 24
May 24

Tyreek Hill 'very confident in my quarterback' as Miami Dolphins WR bonds with Tua Tagovailoa

MIAMI -- Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill has only caught passes from Tua Tagovailoa for a month, but already has high praise for his new quarterback. Hill told reporters during his introductory news conference in March that he knew Tua was "one of the most accurate quarterbacks in the NFL," and expanded on that statement after Tuesday's OTA practice. "At first, I thought it was going to be something crazy -- the ball going all over the place, but Tua actually has probably one of the prettiest balls I've ever caught in my life," Hill said. "It's very catchable. Tua is a very accurate quarterback. That's all I'm going to say." Miami traded five draft picks, including first and second-round picks in the 2022 draft, to the Kansas City Chiefs in exchange for Hill back in March, before immediately signing him to the most lucrative contract in NFL history for a wide receiver -- a four-year, $120 million extension with $72 million...
May 24
May 24

Carolina Panthers' Sam Darnold says he's confident he can be one of the NFL's best quarterbacks

A 17-32 record as an NFL starter and the threat of being replaced during the offseason first by Deshaun Watson and now possibly by third-round pick Matt Corral hasn't made Carolina Panthers starter Sam Darnold any less confident in his abilities. "As long as I know what we're doing, what the defense is doing, I'm confident I can be one of the best quarterbacks in the league," Darnold said Tuesday, the first time he has spoken to reporters since offseason workouts began. Coach Matt Rhule, who hasn't ruled out bringing in a veteran at some point, went so far as to say Darnold is practicing with an "edge" he hasn't seen before. "What Sam has been through this offseason has been very hard," Rhule said. "Your back's against the wall. Everyone's kind of questioning whether you can do this or not. We've seen a guy who has shown up who has a little more edge to him. He's very, very focused." But going from focused to one of the best quarterbacks in the...
May 24
May 24

Two women suing Cleveland Browns' Deshaun Watson appalled by QB's $230M guaranteed contract

Two women who have accused Deshaun Watson of inappropriate sexual conduct condemned the Cleveland Browns for giving the quarterback an NFL-record $230 million guaranteed contract after trading for him. "It's just like a big 'screw you,'" Ashley Solis said of the contract in an interview on HBO's "Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel," which aired Tuesday. "That's what it feels like. That we don't care. He can run and throw, and that's what we care about." Watson is facing 22 civil lawsuits from women who have accused him of inappropriate sexual conduct during massage sessions. Two grand juries in Texas have declined to pursue criminal charges, and Watson has denied all wrongdoing. The NFL is investigating whether Watson violated its code of conduct policy; the league interviewed Watson in person last week as part of its investigation. At the NFL's spring meeting in Atlanta, commissioner Roger Goodell said he thinks the league is nearing the end of its investigation but...
May 24
May 24

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga says loss at French Open will be 'good memory' even as he ends career

PARIS -- Jo-Wilfried Tsonga bid an emotional farewell to tennis in a special presentation on Court Philippe Chatrier at Roland Garros after losing his first-round match Tuesday at the French Open to Casper Ruud. Tsonga, 37, announced last week that he would bow out after this year's tournament, bringing an end to a career that saw him reach the 2008 Australian Open final and 18 career titles. Tsonga faced Ruud, the No. 8 seed, in the first round, and despite a valiant performance, injury led to an abrupt end to his hopes as he lost 6-7 (6), 7-6 (4), 6-2, 7-6 (0). In front of a packed stadium, France's Tsonga got off to a brilliant start, winning the first set in the tiebreak but dropping the next two. After a resurgence in the fourth, he broke Ruud to give himself a chance to serve for the set at 6-5. But he injured his shoulder winning the break point on the forehand, and when he went to serve for the set, he found he couldn't lift his arm properly. That left him...
May 24
May 24

Tennessee Titans' Ryan Tannehill vows he'll be 'great teammate' to Malik Willis, feels mentor comments blown out of proportion

Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill feels his comments about it not being his job to mentor 2022 third-round NFL draft pick Malik Willis have been blown out of proportion. "I meant no disrespect to Malik or anything like that," Tannehill said Tuesday. "We've been in constant communication since he was drafted. I'm disappointed in how things got spun and twisted a little bit. I pride myself on being a great teammate my whole career, going back to when I was a kid playing youth sports." When asked about mentoring Willis earlier this month, Tannehill said that he understood the dynamics of a competitive quarterback room but that it isn't his job to mentor the rookie quarterback. Titans coach Mike Vrabel added that Tannehill's "job is to make sure the team is prepared to win games." Tannehill said Tuesday that he reached out to Willis as soon as his comments made headlines. Tannehill made it clear that he and Willis will compete, but he emphasized that he is...
May 24
May 24

Golden State Warriors forward Otto Porter Jr. out for Game 4 with left foot soreness

DALLAS -- The Golden State Warriors will try to eliminate the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night without veteran forward Otto Porter Jr. The Warriors ruled out one of their valued subs because of left foot soreness at the morning shootaround before Game 4. Golden State leads the Western Conference finals 3-0. "He's still sore," Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. "We got to make the wise decision here. This gives him a couple of days to prepare for a possible Game 5, and we just don't want to take a chance of harming his future availability." If Dallas can stay alive by winning Game 4 on Tuesday, there will be a Game 5 in San Francisco on Thursday. However, if the Warriors can sweep the Mavericks, they and Porter will have over a week off before the NBA Finals are scheduled to start on June 2. Porter left Game 3 midway through the second quarter and was later ruled out because of the soreness. X-rays were negative. The team listed him as questionable on Monday...
May 24
May 24

Louisville hires Milt Wagner, former Cardinals star and grandfather of No. 1 basketball recruit D.J. Wagner, as director of player development

Louisville has hired Milt Wagner, former Cardinals star and the grandfather of the No. 1 recruit in the country, as the program's director of player development and alumni relations. He is the grandfather of No. 1-ranked rising senior  D.J. Wagner, who is currently uncommitted but is the subject of an intense recruiting battle between Louisville and Kentucky. Kentucky coach John Calipari coached D.J. Wagner's father, Dajuan Wagner, at Memphis, and new Louisville coach Kenny Payne played with Milt Wagner on Louisville's 1986 national championship team. "It's an honor for me to return to my alma mater and work alongside my brother Kenny Payne," Wagner said in a statement. "Louisville is my second home and I've always wanted to return here to work with this historic program that I contributed my blood, sweat and tears for as a student-athlete. I'm thrilled to be here with a terrific staff and help this program achieve at the highest level." Calipari also...
May 24
May 24

Louisville hires Milt Wagner, former Cardinals star and grandfather of nation's No. 1 basketball recruit, as director of player development

Louisville has hired Milt Wagner, former Cardinals star and the grandfather of the No. 1 recruit in the country, as the program's director of player development and alumni relations. He is the grandfather of No. 1-ranked rising senior  D.J. Wagner, who is currently uncommitted but is the subject of an intense recruiting battle between Louisville and Kentucky. Kentucky coach John Calipari coached D.J. Wagner's father, Dajuan Wagner, at Memphis, and new Louisville coach Kenny Payne played with Milt Wagner on Louisville's 1986 national championship team. "It's an honor for me to return to my alma mater and work alongside my brother Kenny Payne," Wagner said in a statement. "Louisville is my second home and I've always wanted to return here to work with this historic program that I contributed my blood, sweat and tears for as a student-athlete. I'm thrilled to be here with a terrific staff and help this program achieve at the highest level." Calipari also...
May 24
May 24

Amid NIL drama, Alabama lands ESPN 300 QB Eli Holstein, former Texas A&M commit

As the Nick Saban-Jimbo Fisher saga continues, Saban struck a blow Tuesday with Eli Holstein's commitment to Alabama. Holstein, a 6-foot-3, 215-pound quarterback out of Zachary High School in Zachary, Louisiana, is No. 59 on the ESPN 300. Holstein originally committed to Fisher and Texas A&M in June 2021 but decommitted from the Aggies in March. While Arch Manning remains the top uncommitted quarterback in the 300 (No. 1), Holstein was the third-ranked available signal-caller prior to committing to Alabama. He becomes the fourth ESPN 300 recruit for the Tide, joining cornerback Jahlil Hurley, safety Elliot Washington and defensive end Yhonzae Pierre.
May 24
May 24

CB Kyle Fuller returns home, agrees to one-year contract with Baltimore Ravens

The Baltimore Ravens reached a one-year deal with cornerback Kyle Fuller on Tuesday, bringing home the Baltimore native while continuing to upgrade their secondary. Fuller provides experienced depth behind Pro Bowl cornerbacks Marlon Humphrey and Marcus Peters, both of whom are coming off season-ending injuries. Last season, Baltimore allowed the most passing yards (4,986) and gave up a franchise-worst 31 touchdown passes. Before adding Fuller, the top backups behind Humphrey and Peters were rookie fourth-round picks Jalyn Armour-Davis and Damarion Williams. Fuller, 30, had a bit of a roller-coaster year with the Denver Broncos in 2021 but exited the season believing he still had plenty of quality football left in him. He had signed a prove-it, one-year $9.5 million deal a year ago after he was released by the Chicago Bears. He opened the season as one of the team's starters at cornerback, but he struggled almost...
May 24
May 24

QB Aaron Rodgers not at start of Green Bay Packers' OTAs, but coach Matt LaFleur not concerned

Aaron Rodgers has not been with the Green Bay Packers this week for the start of organized team activities, and coach Matt LaFleur said he was not concerned. LaFleur left open the possibility that Rodgers would participate in some of the OTAs, but stressed that it was voluntary and was Rodgers' choice whether to attend. "I talked to him for a while last night which was great -- just to kind of update him on just where we are and go over a few, like we do every offseason," LaFleur said. "There's always tweaks to what you're doing. But no, he's in great spirits and it was a great conversation. But I wouldn't anticipate seeing him at least this week." Rodgers is expected for the June 7-9 mandatory minicamp; he had previously said on The Pat McAfee Show that he would attend that session but also might come to Green Bay for a few of the OTAs. "Aaron doesn't need reps at this time of the year," Packers quarterbacks coach Tom Clements said last week. "Obviously it'd be nice to...
May 24
May 24

Louisville hires Milt Wagner, former Cardinals star and grandfather of nation's No. 1 recruit, as director of player development

Louisville has hired Milt Wagner, former Cardinals star and the grandfather of the No. 1 recruit in the country, as the program's director of player development and alumni relations. He is the grandfather of No. 1-ranked rising senior  D.J. Wagner, who is currently uncommitted but is the subject of an intense recruiting battle between Louisville and Kentucky. Kentucky coach John Calipari coached D.J. Wagner's father, Dajuan Wagner, at Memphis, while new Louisville coach Kenny Payne played with Milt Wagner on Louisville's 1986 national championship team. "It's an honor for me to return to my alma mater and work alongside my brother Kenny Payne," Wagner said in a statement. "Louisville is my second home and I've always wanted to return here to work with this historic program that I contributed my blood, sweat and tears for as a student-athlete. I'm thrilled to be here with a terrific staff and help this program achieve at the highest level." Calipari also...
May 24
May 24

Source: NFL discussing future of Pro Bowl, including possible elimination of the tackle game

ATLANTA -- NFL owners are discussing the future of the Pro Bowl at this week's league meetings, a source confirmed to ESPN after multiple media outlets reported the news. The league has spoken to players and NFL teams and is now exploring alternatives to the weeklong Pro Bowl celebration, which could include the elimination of the traditional tackle game, the source said. No vote is needed to approve a change. The NFL, while exploring this with players and television partners, hopes to have a decision this summer. The annual all-star game, broadcast on ESPN, has suffered in recent years because of players backing out and the lack of competition due to injury concerns. The NFL has played a traditional Pro Bowl game in some fashion since 1938. Festivities surround the game, including dodgeball, throwing competitions and skills challenges in the past.
May 24
May 24

NFL scouting combine to remain in Indianapolis in 2023, 2024

The NFL scouting combine will remain in Indianapolis in 2023 and 2024, the league announced Tuesday from its spring meeting. This marked the first time that the combine host was put up to a bid, a process that the NFL has used for the Super Bowl and the NFL draft. Proposals were due to the NFL by April, and Indianapolis was awarded the event for the next two years. "After close review by our internal team, the Fan Engagement & Major Events Advisory Committee, and the National Invitational Camp staff, Indianapolis remains the best city to host and grow the NFL Combine in 2023 and 2024," Peter O'Reilly, the NFL's executive vice president of club business and league events, said in a statement. "Indy's vision brings together its long legacy of successfully hosting the Combine and executing the evaluation process, with an exciting focus on innovating and further growing the event from a fan and media perspective." Dallas and Los Angeles were the other cities that submitted bids to...
May 24
May 24

Las Vegas Aces tie WNBA record with 18 3-pointers

The Las Vegas Aces tied a WNBA single-game record with 18 made 3-pointers in Monday's 104-76 win over the Los Angeles Sparks in Vegas. The Aces shot 47.4% from 3 overall, hitting 7 for 8 from deep to jump out to a 39-19 first-quarter lead from which L.A. never recovered. Vegas went on to make 11 of its first 12 3s of the game before cooling off slightly in the latter 25 minutes. "We shot the ball well. They caught us on a night," first-year head coach Becky Hammon said. "If we can bottle that, that would be great."   The Mystics and the  Seattle Storm previously hit 18 3s in a game on Aug. 18, 2019, and Aug. 12, 2020, respectively. With the victory, the Aces improved to a league-best 7-1 while the Sparks lost their fifth straight game, dropping to 2-5. Seven Vegas players connected from deep, including 2020 MVP  A'ja Wilson, whose pair of 3s got Vegas on the board to start the game. Guards Kelsey Plum (5 for 8) and Chelsea...
May 24
May 24

MLB suspends New York Yankees' Josh Donaldson for one game over comments to Chicago White Sox's Tim Anderson

Major League Baseball has suspended New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson for one game for "inappropriate comments" made to Chicago White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson on Saturday.  Donaldson, who also was fined an undisclosed amount, is appealing the punishment, MLB announced on Monday. He will be eligible to play for the Yankees until the appeal process is completed. Shortly before the suspension was announced, the Yankees said Donaldson had been put on the COVID-19 injured list. "MLB has completed the process of speaking to the individuals involved in this incident," Michael Hill, MLB's senior vice president for on-field operations, said in a statement. "There is no dispute over what was said on the field. Regardless of Mr. Donaldson's intent, the comment he directed toward Mr. Anderson was disrespectful and in poor judgment, particularly when viewed in the context of their prior interactions. In addition, Mr. Donaldson's remark was a...
May 24
May 24

Boston Celtics' 'sense of urgency' from start to finish propels Game 4 blowout of Miami Heat to even East finals

BOSTON -- When things have gone poorly for the  Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference finals, it has been when they've lost focus and allowed Miami to speed them up and turn them over, leading to fast-break points -- the one consistent way the  Heat have scored in this series. That was the formula Miami used to fuel its victories in Games 1 and 3. And so, heading into Game 4, Boston knew that in order to even this series at two wins apiece, it would have to avoid falling into those same bad habits once again. Mission accomplished. The Celtics were utterly dominant at both ends from start to finish on Monday night. Boston scored the first eight points and never looked back, cruising to a wire-to-wire 102-82 victory in front of a sellout crowd at TD Garden to send this series back to the shores of Biscayne Bay for Game 5 on Wednesday, with both teams two wins away from a trip to the NBA Finals. "Urgency," said  Jayson Tatum, who led all scorers...
May 24
May 24

Colorado Avalanche's Nazem Kadri records hat trick in Game 4 to push St. Louis Blues to brink of elimination

Avalanche center Nazem Kadri, who over the previous 48 hours was the subject of racist attacks and threats following his injurious collision with Blues goalie Jordan Binnington, recorded his first career playoff hat trick in Colorado's 6-3 Game 4 road win on Monday night, pushing St. Louis to the brink of elimination. "Unfortunately, I've been dealing with that a long time. That's sad to say, but I'm getting good at putting in the rearview mirror. It's a big deal. I try to act like it's not. Just try to keep moving forward," Kadri told TNT in a postgame interview. "I know those messages I got don't reflect every single fan in St. Louis. But for those that hate, that one's for them." There was increased police presence both at the Avalanche's team hotel in St. Louis and around the players' entrance to the ice at Enterprise Center after local law enforcement was called in to investigate the threats made toward Kadri, which came in the aftermath...
May 24

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