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NBA free agency rumors: LeBron James not interested in elaborate recruiting process

Every team in the NBA wants LeBron James, and he knows it. So don’t bother with billboards, hype videos or presentations.

According to ESPN.com, James wants a low-key free agency process if he decides not to pick up his $35.6 million player option with the Cavaliers by the end of this week.

James had a circus recruiting process in 2010 with elaborate pitches from a half-dozen teams, including eventual sweepstakes winner, the Miami Heat. The process was more simple in 2014 as he met with only the Heat and Cavaliers in-person, while agents Rich Paul and Mark Termini took meetings with five other suitors (the Bulls, Lakers, Suns, Rockets and Mavericks).

But the fact is James Harden got better, he made his team better. His team is not the greatest team. Now they are, but he made them the greatest team.

Harden missed out on the prize to Russell Westbrook last season, but averaged the most points (30.4) and fourth most assists (8.8) in the regular season.

James Harden is a great individual player, a better defender and he’s a little bit better moving his body. [He is] MVP hands down and he’s proven it time in, time out, World Peace added.

The guys are really pushing hard in the dugout but it’s just not happening right now, manager Ron Gardenhire said.

An intentional walk followed, and the go-ahead run scored when Chris Young hit into a force play at third base. Tanner Scott hit Martin Maldonado with a pitch to force Cheap Jerseys Sunglasses in a run, and David Fletcher capped the uprising with a two-run single.

It was good clutch-hitting that inning, Scioscia said. I think the biggest hit there was Albert.

The Angels lost six straight before coming to Baltimore, and now they appear to have their mojo back.

Whenever you can grind out runs late in the game to come back and win, it’s exciting, Fletcher said. It’s definitely something to give us confidence.

The Cardinals have been careening a bit. They have lost four in a row after winning four straight, a run that ended another three-game losing streak. They have lost 12 of 18 since peaking Cheap Jerseys To Design at eight games over .500 on June 11.

Marcus Peters was one of the team’s best defenders during his run with the Chiefs but was traded to the Rams this offseason.

His replacement will be Kendall Fuller, a slot cornerback acquired via the Alex Smith trade who will play a much more significant role in the Kansas City secondary this year than he did in Washington.

With the Washington Redskins, Fuller was a cog in a secondary that also featured Josh Norman and Bashaud Breeland. With the Chiefs, he will be the guy that the team will lean on in coverage. To say the least, Fuller, who is expected to be a No. 1 cornerback this year, will not have much help.

The Dolphins are five deep at defensive end, with Cameron Wake, Robert Quinn, Charles Harris, Andre Branch and William Hayes making up the pass-rushing unit, but their interior line has been neglected in recent seasons.

Josh Freeman (sat):

Freeman was set to ride the bench throughout his rookie season with the Buccaneers. But awful play from starter Byron Leftwich and backup Josh Johnson left Tampa no choice but to plug the kid into a tough situation in Week 9.

Freeman was thrown into a fire too hot for most to put out — an 0-7 team. Although he won his first start, he didn’t do much after to reduce the flames, and the Bucs lost their next five games. Despite a few bright spots in Freeman’s Tampa career, it didn’t work out — definitely not from the beginning.

The Bears got Allen Robinson to be their well-rounded, big, speedy Cheap Custom Jerseys No. 1 for Mitchell Trubisky. Now they trade up to give their QB a strong route runner to Cheap Dodgers Jerseys do the dirty work in the slot.

The Colts are transitioning to a 4-3 base scheme under Matt Eberflus and desperately needed an edge rusher with a twitch to put opposite Jabaal Sheard. Turay has a short history of high production, giving him high upside.

Except when you have a Clayton Kershaw or a Justin Verlander or even a Dallas Keuchel, who the third time through the order they are still your best option relative to your bullpen.

Except maybe for your closer. In the minor leagues, it’s rare that pitchers get to go deep, but I do know that while we have limited our pitchers in the lower levels, once they get to Triple-A, we do want to make sure our starters have an opportunity to go deep into games.

From there, it’ll be up to a pitcher-manager partnership at the big league level to push the envelope until eventually you find that you have a Verlander on your hands.

The guy who can do it over 30 starts in a season, or a 15-year career like Verlander has done, is a rare feat. For one, it takes health. The ability to go deep in a game will always exist in this game. The information will always tend to want you to get to your bullpen a little bit faster. But I can recite a lot of games during my short managerial career where I might have been foolish to take a guy out.

Of course, The first four years of his deal amount to a total of $26.7 million, which is an average of $6.7 million per season. That’s slightly more than the league’s better backups will receive on their deals. (For example, Nick Foles originally signed a two-year, $11 million deal with the Eagles before renegotiating it this month.)

Even if you factor in an inconsistent debut season like his 2016 campaign, the upside for the Eagles is getting a quarterback worth $95 million while paying $26.7 million over the first four years. Even if you think Wentz has only a 30 percent chance of turning into that kind of superstar going into the draft, you’re right to take a shot on a quarterback with the second overall pick. The numbers aren’t and can’t be exact, but you get the idea: The upside for drafting a Cheap Authentic Baseball Jerseys quarterback is getting an absolute bargain.

When you do the same math for running backs, though, the numbers Cheap Authentic NHL Jerseys aren’t anywhere near as appealing. There are only 11 active four-plus-year contracts for running backs.

Jason Witten Officially Announces Retirement from Football

Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten announced Thursday he has officially retired from the NFL after 15 seasons. 

The NFL shared comments from Witten’s press conference confirming his retirement:

ESPN.com’s Todd Archer reported Witten plans on joining the network’s Monday Night Football broadcast team as an analyst, starting with the 2018 season.

During Thursday’s press conference, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones spoke about Witten’s impact on the franchise, calling the tight end an inspiration to him and everybody that’s ever said they were a Dallas Cowboy, per the team’s official Twitter account:

Add in the fact Ryan is seemingly just hitting his peak, and the contract doesn’t come with a ton of risk despite the high dollar amount. It’s a safe investment for the Falcons as they look to remain among the league’s elite teams in the years ahead.

Then there’s quarterback Lamar Jackson out of Louisville, the smooth pocket passer with rare elusive ability in the open field. He’s bound to sit behind Flacco and learn for a year or two, though it won’t stop the fans from chanting for him if the fading veteran starts to struggle. 

There’s a similar theme for third-round pick Orlando Brown Jr. The 6’8, 345-pound offensive tackle careened down draft boards after posting one of the worst combine performances of all time. But the son of a former Ravens tackle has interesting upside and could eventually win a starting gig at right tackle if he outplays the numbers while he develops. 

Let’s throw the second third-round Cheap China Jerseys pick Mark Andrews in here as well. Another 6’5 option at tight end, the Oklahoma product struggles as a blocker and will need some time before he can show up in base packages. 

The team made 12 picks over seven rounds and is bound to stress patience. There are plenty of intriguing upside guys, like DeShon Elliott and Greg Senat, who need Cheap Cycling Jerseys to put their heads down and go to work with the goal of making the final roster. 

What Every NFL Team’s Rookie Class Must Accomplish in 2018

The NFL’s newest influx of rookies from the 2018 NFL draft will be asked to make an impact of varying degrees by those teams that walked to the podium and announced their names in Arlington, Texas.  

Missions assigned to each rookie vary by circumstance. Some rookies only have to sit and learn for a year to the best of their ability before taking over. Others get thrown into the fray right away with the expectation being a unit-wide change, if not one reshaping an entire division and playoff outlook. 

Speaking of Big Ben, he now has third-round quarterback Mason Rudolph sitting behind him. It’s interesting, as the Steelers traded up to get him yet would have taken him rounds earlier if they truly thought he was franchise-quarterback material when Big Ben calls it quits. Rudolph is a capable player, of course, but he’ll have to convince the coaching staff he should get in games over Landry Jones if something happens to the starter. 

Now, it’s paid off in a major way, both literally and figuratively, even though his 2017 campaign wasn’t quite as strong as the prior one, posting a 91.4 passer rating with 20 touchdowns.

He’d often flashed the potential to become one of the Cheap Bike Jerseys For Men league’s Cheap Barcelona Jerseys top quarterbacks since the Falcons selected him with the third overall pick in the 2008 draft. The 2016 season was the first time he played at a top-tier level for the entire year, and he has the Most Valuable Player Award to show for it.

His success carried into that year’s playoffs, with seven touchdowns and no interceptions as Atlanta knocked off the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers to reach the Super Bowl.

The Falcons jumped out to a 28-3 lead on the New England Patriots before Tom Brady and Co. stormed back to win the title in overtime. Ryan still had another impressive showing, connecting on 73.9 percent of his throws for 284 yards and two touchdowns in the heartbreaking loss.

All told, it was a banner year for the Pennsylvania native. Falcons head coach Dan Quinn explained to Jeff Schultz of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution what he believed allowed the four-time Pro Bowl selection to reach the upper echelon of NFL signal-callers.

Le’Veon Bell is one of the league’s most dynamic players.

He rushed for 1,291 yards last season to go along with 655 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns. Because of that versatility, Bell wants to be paid like more than just a running back — he wants to be paid like a running back and a pass catcher. This makes sense on some level, but Bell’s reported asking price is so steep that it’s almost impossible to think that the Steelers would consider it.

Everybody associated with this has said that the Steelers want to do a long-term deal, NFL Network’s Aditi Kinkhabwala said from the owners meetings in Orlando, Florida. In fact, I spoke to (head coach) Mike Tomlin earlier today and he said,’Everybody knows we’re in the business of trying to lock him up for the rest of his career.’ However, as (general manager) Kevin Colbert… told the local media, there’s no urgency right now, and here’s why: Le’Veon Bell wants $17 million a year.

Villanueva forced his way onto the 25-man roster with a hot spring, and he’ll start again at third base on Wednesday night, manager Andy Green said.

It’s fun watching guys succeed like that, Green said. A guy that’s earning everything he’s getting right now. Fought his way to the big leagues. … You see the power; it’s real. It was a fun game for him, one I’m sure he’ll remember for the rest of his life.

Villanueva homered against the Rockies last season.

On one nice Thanksgiving afternoon, he pounded the Green Bay Packers’ Evan Dietrich-Smith’s head into the ground three times.

On another cozy Thanksgiving day, he kicked the Houston Texans’ Matt Schaub in the groin. He is nothing if not consistent. He was fined before his career even started, for grabbing a facemask in the preseason of his rookie year with the Detroit Lions. Eight years later, while playing for the Miami Dolphins last season, he was penalized for attempting to choke Baltimore Ravens quarterback Ryan Mallett. Signing Suh to a one-year, $14 million deal would be risky enough for a Rams team that was steadied last winter by an embracing young coach in a drama-free environment. But Suh is only the latest of three acquisitions by an aggressive front office apparently unworried about messing with the team’s emerging playoff culture. Meet Aqib Talib, a cornerback acquired in a trade with Cheap Jerseys China NHL the Denver Broncos this offseason.

Before Desmond’s homer, Carlos Asuaje’s double pulled the Padres Cheap Jerseys Cycling to 3-2 as it chased home Eric Hosmer after Hosmer hit his third double in three games. The Padres, though, left the bases loaded for the second consecutive inning.

NFL teams unanimously approve simplified catch rule

The NFL has a new catch rule.

League owners approved modifications to the catch rule for the 2018 season during the Annual League Meeting on Tuesday. The changes passed unanimously on a 32-0 vote, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported.

In other league rule news, owners decided to table what has been branded the Josh McDaniels Rule, which would have allowed assistants to be hired while their teams are still in postseason. Expect this to be a topic during the Spring League Meeting in May.

NFL Network’s Judy Battista also reports that the Jets withdrew their proposal to make defensive pass interference a 15-yard penalty rather than a spot foul.

Ramirez hit a two-run homer in the fifth. As he approached first base, he pointed at his family amid the large throng of cheering Red Sox fans behind their dugout.

We’ve got like three suites, Ramirez said. I spent a lot of money on tickets.

Rafael Devers doubled home a run in the ninth and has at least one RBI in each of his four games.

The Marlins’ Starlin Castro had three hits and his 500th career RBI.

The distribution of content continues to evolve and Turner has invested in creating and delivering premium, multi-platform experiences including our soon-to-be-launched B/R Live sports streaming service, said David Levy, President of Turner. Our long-standing partnership with the NBA has been led by a shared vision to provide fans with the most engaging experiences that match a wide variety of viewing preferences. This is a game-changing initiative to provide fans with personalized access to premium NBA content. From games on TNT and NBA TV or the volume of out-of-market games through NBA League Pass, to the defining moments of a thrilling matchup with a compelling story arc, we’ll have it covered.

This offering is a new and exciting way for fans to experience live NBA action, said NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. Turner Sports shares our commitment Cheap Jerseys And Hats From China to innovation and to making our games even more accessible.

B/R Live is absolutely free to everyone on a trial basis until June, and this month it will begin by featuring live content from The Spring League, the World Armwrestling League Cheap Jerseys Baseball and more.

Joe McKnight’s killer gets 30 years

The man who shot and killed former NFL running back Joe McKnight will pay a step price for the crime. Ronald Gasser has been sentenced to 30 years in prison.

Let this be a cautionary tale to all drivers who rage behind the wheel of their car at other drivers, Judge Ellen Kovach said at the sentencing hearing, via NOLA.com. She added that McKnight’s death could have been avoided if Gasser simply had the good sense, the courage and the wisdom to simply disengage.

O’Reilly retired the final 13 batters he faced, starting with the strikeout to end the fifth. He threw 119 pitches in the game, 79 for strikeouts. Third baseman Carmen Sclafani was 2-for-4 for Rutgers; Hagenman took the loss for Penn State (6-10), falling to 2-2. He allowed four runs on six hits in six innings of work with three strikeouts and two walks.

Standout Rutgers center fielder Jawuan Harris was back with the team after missing the last eight games due to suspension, but he did not start and did not appear in the game.

I asked one of the best contract minds around, former Eagles team president Joe Banner, whether these rumblings had any merit.

Game-changer does not mean everybody gets a guaranteed contract, Banner replied. It means some star players at key positions can get them. It means every player should be getting a higher [percentage] of deal guaranteed than they have been.

In other words: This may be the start of guaranteed contracts entering the NFL’s bloodstream. Sloooowlyyyyy.

[Jets corner] Tru Johnson effectively got a three-year deal Cheap Indiana Pacers Jerseys that is [mostly] guaranteed, Banner continued. [Sammy] Watkins and all free agents this offseason have gotten a much higher percentage guaranteed than in the past. Every player and agent should now ask, ‘Why am I signing a deal with one or two years guaranteed but giving away my Cheap Ireland Soccer Jerseys rights for five to six ‘

Ovechkin reaches 600 goals, Capitals beat Jets in overtime

“I feel like my legs were 15 years old,” Kuznetsov said. “I don’t have a good overtime the last 10 games probably. I just wanted to score that because I know that one point will make a huge difference at the end of the year.”

Capitals G Philipp Grubauer stopped 26 shots in his third consecutive start over No. 1 goaltender Braden Holtby, who is 1-5-2 with a 4.83 goals-against average and .854 save percentage in his past eight games. …

“I’m here for one year. We’ll see how it goes. Maybe I can be here for longer,” Lynn said.

Asked whether the slow market left him with a chip on his shoulder, Lynn said, “The chip on my shoulder’s been there since I was born. I’m pretty sure that’s the way my dad says it. That’s something I use to compete, and it helps drive me.”

Correa and closer Ken Giles did not attend Monday’s ceremony in Washington, D.C., that honored the Astros’ 2017 World Series title. The Astros said Giles had a family commitment.

“It was not politics or anything,” Correa said Tuesday. “It was just that the day off was perfect to be able to provide some help for the people in Puerto Rico in need.”

Puerto Rico was damaged in September by Hurricane Maria. With the assistance of Astros, Jim Crane, Correa helped send a plane of supplies to Puerto Rico in October.

“I don’t only represent the Houston Astros, I don’t only represent my family, but I also represent the American citizens that are living in Puerto Rico,” Correa said. “I just want to bring some awareness to what is going on.”

Correa’s family and his fiance, Daniella Rodriguez, joined him on Monday to help finalize the next shipment, which he hopes will depart South Florida via ship before the end of spring training.

Irving is expected to take an extended rest due to lingering Cheap Basketball Jerseys tendinitis in his left knee that forced him to sit out the second half of Sunday’s loss to the Indiana Pacers. Smart sprained his right thumb in the same game while diving to the floor, and the team is getting more information on the severity of his injury while determining whether he’ll be able Cheap Chelsea Jerseys to return to action this season.

O.J. Simpson gives ‘hypothetical’ account of murders in ‘Lost Confession’

In a never-before-seen 2006 interview, O.J. Simpson detailed how he would have hypothetically killed Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman.

Fox will air the interview as part of a two-hour special, titled O.J. Simpson: The Lost Confession, on Sunday night.

The Redskins have some returning options here, but putting it all together, there are still major concerns about whether coach Jay Gruden can finally field the respectable power rushing attack he wants. Part of the team’s struggles last season were tied to a rash of offensive line injuries that decimated the run-blocking, but durability issues also affected the backfield with Rob Kelley (knee/ankle) and Chris Thompson (leg) going down with season-ending injuries in November. Throughout the season, rookie Samaje Perine was in and out of Gruden’s doghouse because of ball security.

Bottom line: Washington finished No. 28 in rushing yards per game (90.5) and No. 30 in yards per attempt (3.6).

The running back class in the draft this year is deep, but the Patriots’ Dion Lewis (higher tier) and the Browns’ Isaiah Crowell (middle tier) would be Washington’s best free-agent targets. The 49ers’ Carlos Hyde and former Buccaneer Doug Martin won’t be worth the return as potential workhorses for Gruden.

The Patriots’ Rex Burkhead, with whom Gruden briefly worked while with the Bengals, may be a more realistic target as a complementary piece. A darkhorse would be the Giants’ sneaky effective Orleans Darkwa, who has a decent mix of power and shiftiness. As someone who ran all over the Redskins in the season finale, he could work well in Gruden’s system.

That puts the priority on getting guys to fill out the 3-4 end rotation for Bowles. The Bears’ Mitch Unrein and the Titans’ DaQuan Jones, pending free agents, played in that base scheme last season.

In the draft, Washington’s Vita Vea is yet Cheap NFL Jerseys another non-skill consideration for either the No. 6 pick or a slight trade back. Because of Williams’ presence, the Jets could also be OK waiting until Day 2 or 3, as Virginia’s Andrew Brown and Alabama’s Da’Shawn Hand both could serve them well.

Here are two more names to think about at No. 6 — N.C. State’s Bradley Chubb Cheap Authentic Jerseys From China and Texas-San Antonio’s Marcus Davenport, with the latter being more of a natural fit as 3-4 outside linebacker. Some later-round targets for the Jets’ scheme include Georgia’s Lorenzo Carter, Florida State’s Josh Sweat and USC’s Uchenna Nwosu.