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Friday’s Morning Mashup: Charles Barkley offers to kill Skip Bayless; Yadier Molina wants apology from Adam Jones for WBC party comments 03.24.17 at 9:25 am ET
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Good morning! Here is your Friday Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories and scores from our news wire.

MLB: Boston vs. Toronto, 1:07 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: San Francisco vs. Colorado, 4 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Baltimore vs. Minnesota, 7 p.m. (MLB Network)
NBA: Phoenix at Boston, 7:30 p.m. (CSN, WBZ-FM 98.5)
NBA: Atlanta at Milwaukee, 8 p.m. (NBATV)
NHL: NY Islanders at Pittsburgh (NHL Network)
College basketball: Butler vs. North Carolina, 7:09 p.m. (CBS)
College basketball: South Carolina vs. Baylor, 7:29 p.m. (TBS)
College basketball: UCLA vs. Kentucky, 9:30 p.m. (CBS)
College basketball: Wisconsin vs. Florida, 9:59 p.m. (TBS)


— During an appearance on the Dan Patrick Show Thursday, Charles Barkley talked about Michael Jordan’s gambling and Michigan’s run in the NCAA tournament after their plane incident, but it wasn’t until the final minutes that things got really interesting.

As the spot was ending, Barkley made Patrick an interesting offer to boost ratings for his show: Barkley said if he ever gets a terminal illness, he will kill Second Take host Skip Bayless live on Patrick’s show.

“You know what we should do for ratings? If I get a disease and I’m gonna die, how about you get Skip Bayless in here and I’ll kill him live on national television,” Barkley said.

“I like it. Like pay-per-view,” Patrick responded.

“No, no, no. Just get him in here. Only when I know Imma die….Cause I just want to get Skip Bayless in a room one time and beat him like a dog,” Barkley said. “… Only if I knew I was gonna die. Not if I’m gonna live, cause I don’t wanna go to prison. Cause like Mahorn say, ‘they would love you in prison.’”

The producer looked thrilled when Patrick asked if he would be willing to set this up.

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Read More: Adam Jones, Charles Barkley, Yadier Molina,
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Giants WRs defend trip to Miami, Eli Manning jokes he is ‘disappointed'; Bengals CB Adam Jones arrested for assault 01.04.17 at 8:33 am ET
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Good morning, here is your Wednesday Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories and scores from our news wire.

NBA: Chicago at Cleveland, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Portland at Golden State, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: NY Rangers at Philadelphia, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
College basketball: Villanova at Butler, 6:30 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Georgetown at Providence, 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Georgia Tech at Duke, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: South Carolina at Georgia, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Iowa State at Baylor, 8 p.m. (ESPNews)
College basketball: Creighton at St. John’s, 8:30 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Oregon at Washington, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Temple at SMU, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Tulsa at Houston, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Boise State at UNLV, 11 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: New Mexico at Utah State, 11 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: San Diego State at Nevada, 11 p.m. (ESPN2)
Women’s college basketball: Baylor at West Virginia, 7 p.m. (FS2)


— On Tuesday Odell Beckham Jr defended the Giants wide receivers’ trip to Miami on their Monday off-day.

“We were going to [Florida] to get our minds right,” Beckham said. “That’s what we we’re doing. I handle my business. I’m a grown man. I do what I am supposed to be doing. I’m in the building, when I’m supposed to be in the building. I don’t miss team meetings, none of that.”

“I’m not perfect, but everybody knows my passion for football, when I’m on the football field,” Beckham went on. “I’m here for the NY Giants, especially over the next four weeks. Now, we are about to make a run, about to make a push; it’s go time. Everybody is focusing on what they need to be focusing on.”

During his weekly appearance on Mike Francesa’s show on WFAN, Victor Cruz downplayed the hoopla surrounding the trip.

“There’s nothing to really talk about, Mike, to be honest,” Cruz said. “Those things are personal. It’s my personal life that doesn’t need to be discussed. If it doesn’t have anything to do with football, it doesn’t really matter.”

Giants quarterback Eli Manning joked on Tuesday he was upset with his teammates.

“I think as a team we always pride ourselves on being well prepared. So when I saw some of those pictures I was a little disappointed,” Manning said. “Just because obviously they didn’t pack accordingly. They didn’t have any shirts. Kind of long pants. No shorts. No flip flops or anything.”

Manning also joked he was not in the picture on the boat because he was the one taking it.

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Read More: Adam Jones, Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr., Victor Cruz
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Orioles OF Adam Jones hesitates to protest anthem because, ‘Baseball is a white man’s sport’ 09.13.16 at 8:14 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MLB: Orioles at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
WNBA: Lynx at Sky, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
WNBA: Mercury at Sparks, 10:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
Hockey: World Cup of Hockey exhibition, United States vs. Finland, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: U.S. Open Cup, Revolution at FC Dallas, 10 p.m. (ESPN2)
Soccer: UEFA Champions, Arsenal at Paris Saint-Germain, 2:30 p.m. (FS2)
Soccer: UEFA Champions, Celtic at Barcelona, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: UEFA Champions, Rostov at Bayern Munich, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN2)


Adam Jones

Adam Jones

— No Major League Baseball players have joined in the national anthem protest that is gaining popularity around the NFL, but according to Orioles outfielder Adam Jones, there’s a reason for that.

“Baseball is a white man’s sport,” Jones said in an interview with USA Today, implying a protest could cost a player his job.

The article noted that 68 percent of the NFL is made up of African-Americans, while it’s only 8 percent for baseball.

“We already have two strikes against us,” Jones said. “So you might as well not kick yourself out of the game. In football, you can’t kick them out. You need those players. In baseball, they don’t need us.”

Jones said he is dismayed by the fact that 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who started the protests, is being criticized for “what he believes in.”

“The outside world doesn’t really respect athletes unless they talk about what they want them to talk about,” Jones said. “Society doesn’t think we deserve the right to have an opinion on social issues.

“We make a lot of money, so we just have to talk baseball, talk football. But most athletes, especially if you’re tenured in your sport, you’re educated on life, and on more things than most people on the outside. But because Donald Trump is a billionaire, he can say whatever he wants, because he’s older and has more money?

“And when Kaepernick does something, or says something, he’s ridiculed. Why is that?”

Orioles manager Buck Showalter, whose team opened a three-game series against the Red Sox at Fenway Park on Monday night, said he had not seen the story but respected Jones’ right to speak his mind.

“That’s why we fought so hard for these rights,” Showalter said, “to be able to do that in our country.”

Meanwhile, before the 49ers’ game Monday night in San Francisco, Kapernick and teammate Eric Reid again took a knee during the national anthem, while a few players on both teams stood but raised their fists.

— Ryan Lochte’s redemption tour got off to a strange start, as the Olympic swimmer was rushed by two men from the audience after his performance Monday night on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.”

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Read More: Adam Jones, Colin Kaepernick, Dancing With the Stars, Ryan Lochte
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Bengals still upset with Steelers coaches for behavior in Saturday’s game 01.12.16 at 8:10 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

NBA: Celtics at Knicks, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Bulls at Bucks, 8 p.m. (NBATV)
NBA: Pelicans at Lakers, 10:30 p.m. (NBATV)
College basketball: George Washington at UMass, 7 p.m. (NESN)
College basketball: DePaul at Xavier, 6:30 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Kansas at West Virginia, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Miami at Virginia, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Mississippi State at Kentucky, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Tulane at South Florida, 7 p.m. (ESPNews)
College basketball: Davidson at Dayton, 8 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Providence at Creighton, 8:30 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Auburn at Vanderbilt, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Iowa State at Texas, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Maryland at Michigan, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: New Mexico at UNLV, 10 p.m. (CBSSN)
NHL: Lightning at Avalanche, 9 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: Premier League, Manchester United at Newcastle, 3 p.m. (NBCSN)


— The Bengals’ season is done, but their complaining is not. There are some lingering hard feelings after Saturday’s 18-16 loss to the rival Steelers, and much of the anger is directed at the Pittsburgh coaching staff.

Following a key play late in the game in which Vontaze Burfict was penalized for hitting Steelers receiver Antonio Brown in the head — Burfict, a repeat offender, on Monday received a three-game suspension from the league — Bengals cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones received another penalty for bumping an official while trying to get at Steelers assistant coach Joey Porter, who had walked onto the field. That helped set up the Steelers for their game-winning field goal.

Porter, who was no stranger to controversy when he played linebacker in the NFL for 13 seasons until 2011, remains the subject of some Bengals’ ire.

“I’ve got a ton of respect for those guys,” Bengals left tackle Andrew Whitworth said of the Steelers. “Joey Porter is not one of them. He’s not one of the guys I respect very much. He’s a guy that has always run his mouth. He’s always been disrespectful to people.”

Added Whitworth: “To me, Joey Porter just doesn’t have a lot of class. As a coach, there’s a different standard.”

In the first half, Steelers offensive line coach Mike Munchak picked up a penalty for grabbing the hair of Bengals safety Reggie Nelson during an altercation on the sideline.

“Coaches are supposed to be held to a higher standard when it comes to stuff like that,” Jones said. “Even with Mike Munchak grabbing Reggie’s hair. Thank God that wasn’t me. I wouldn’t have just walked away.”

The league said it is reviewing the conduct of the coaches and other players during the game and could consider further discipline.

— The Broncos, meanwhile, have their own issues with the Steelers as the teams prepare to meet Sunday in the divisional round in Denver.

During the teams’ meeting last month in Pittsburgh, Steelers center Cody Wallace approached a pile of players, left his feet and delivered a head-to-head hit on Broncos safety David Bruton Jr.

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Read More: Adam Jones, Cody Wallace, Joey Porter, Kirk Cousins
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Curt Schilling done with chemotherapy in battle with cancer 04.09.14 at 7:57 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MLB: Rangers at Red Sox, 4:05 p.m. (NESN, ESPN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Padres at Indians, 12:05 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Astros at Blue Jays, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
MLB: Pirates at Cubs, 8 p.m. (WGN)
NBA: Celtics at Hawks, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Heat at Grizzlies, 8 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Thunder at Clippers, 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: Red Wings at Penguins, 8 p.m. (NBCSN)
NHL: Sharks at Ducks, 10:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
Soccer: UEFA Champions, Manchester United at Bayern Munich, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: CONCACAF Champions, Cruz Azul vs. Tijuana, 8 p.m. (FS1)


— Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling announced Tuesday that he has completed chemotherapy as part of his battle with cancer.

Tweeted Schilling: How ya hanging? Chemo done, 5 radiations remain #Cancergroinkick ftw!

Schilling, 47, announced in February that he was diagnosed with cancer, although he did not reveal what type he has. Schilling pitched for the Red Sox from 2004-07 as part of a 20-year major league career. He most recently served as an ESPN analyst after the well-publicized collapse of his computer game company.

Schilling’s daughter, Gabby, tweeted a photo of her father in the hospital, writing: beyond blessed to be bale to say that my dad finished his LAST chemo today! just 3 more days of radiation


Orioles center fielder Adam Jones did not appreciate it when two fans ran on the field during the eighth inning of Tuesday’s game at Yankee Stadium, and he made sure they knew.

“I let them know how I felt, obviously a lot of choice words because I think it’s idiotic for people to run on the field and I think the punishment needs to be a lot harsher,” Jones said after Baltimore’s 14-5 victory. “And they should let us have a shot to kick them with our metal spikes on because it’s stupid.

“You look like a [idiot] when you run on the field. We don’t go to any other events. We don’t go to other sporting events and do that to their jobs, but they come to ours and do that. I get it, you’re drunk and you want to be on SportsCenter. Your [butt] is going to jail with a fine, and you might not be allowed to come back to the ballpark.”

The fans were tackled by security in the outfield after racing onto the field from the third-base stands.

“I remember a couple of years ago, one dude broke his ankle in Baltimore,” Jones said. “I was laughing at him. I wish he shattered his femur because it’s stupid. It’s just plain old stupid. Anybody who does it, I wish the cops tase the living [crap] out of them. I wish that.”

— The wrestler known as The Ultimate Warrior, born Jim Hellwig before legally changing his name in 1993, died Tuesday after collapsing in a parking lot outside an Arizona hotel, three days after being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. He was 54.

The Ultimate Warrior announced during Saturday’s induction ceremony that he had signed a contract with the WWE to be a brand ambassador, returning to the organization after an absence of almost two decades.

The WWE released a statement that read: “WWE is shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the passing of one of the most iconic WWE Superstars ever, The Ultimate Warrior. Warrior began his WWE career in 1987 and quickly went on to become one of the biggest stars in WWE history. Warrior became WWE Champion at WrestleMania VI, defeating Hulk Hogan in an epic encounter. We are grateful that just days ago, Warrior had the opportunity to take his rightful place in the WWE Hall of Fame and was also able to appear at WrestleMania 30 and Monday Night Raw to address his legions of fans. WWE sends its sincere condolences to Warrior’€™s family, friends and fans. Warrior was 54 and is survived by his wife Dana and his two daughters.”

The Ultimate Warrior had celebrated his return to the WWE by giving a speech in the ring during Monday’s episode of “WWE Raw.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On April 9, 1982, the Celtics retired which player’s number?

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Read More: Adam Jones, Curt Schilling, The Ultimate Warrior,
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Fan dies after fall at Atlanta’s Turner Field 08.13.13 at 8:14 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MLB: Red Sox at Blue Jays, 7:07 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Pirates at Cardinals, 8 p.m. (MLB Network)
WNBA: Chicago Sky at Los Angeles Sparks, 10:30 p.m. (NBA TV)


‘™¦ A man attending Monday night’s Phillies-Braves game at Atlanta’s Turner Field died after he fell more than 60 feet onto a parking lot, Atlanta Police confirmed.

“There’s no indication of foul play and the fall appears accidental,” police spokesman John Chafee said. “It appears he fell from an upper-level platform to a secured lot below.”

The fan, identified early Tuesday as 29-year-old Ronald Homer, fell on the back side of the stadium shortly before 9 p.m., just as the game was starting after a delay of almost two hours caused by heavy rain.

It’s the second time a man died at a Braves game at Turner Field. In 2008, a 25-year-old fell down a stairwell and died after suffering head injuries. Police determined that alcohol factored into that incident.

‘™¦ A Giants fan took responsibility for throwing a banana in the direction of Orioles outfielder Adam Jones late in Sunday’s game in San Francisco, but he insisted it was not racially motivated.

Alexander Poulides told the San Jose Mercury News that he grabbed the banana off a catering cart and tossed it onto the field in frustration at the Giants’ poor play as he left AT&T Park during Baltimore’s 10-2 win.

“I’m embarrassed and shocked by the outcome,” the 42-year-old said. “In hindsight, I wish I didn’t do it and I apologize. I’m very sorry.”

The Giants said they were unable to confirm Poulides’ participation, and they issued a statement offering their “sincerest apologies” to Jones and the Orioles.

“The inappropriate actions of this individual in no way reflect the values of our organization and our fans,” the team said. “The Giants have a zero tolerance policy against this type of behavior, which results in immediate ejections from the ballpark.”

One day after taking to Twitter to voice his displeasure, Jones indicated he’s focused on other things.

“It’s unfortunate that things happen like that, but it ain’t going to stop me, myself and the Orioles,” he said before Monday’s game against the Diamondbacks in Phoenix. “We have games to win. It’s mid-August. I’ve got a bigger concern in my head than someone’s ignorance or act of whatever. You know what I mean?

‘™¦ Angels outfielder Mike Trout, one of baseball’s young superstars, has little patience with those who use performance-enhancing drugs.

“I think you should be out of the game if you get caught,” the 22-year-old said Monday in an interview with New York sports radio station WFAN. “It takes away from the guys that are working hard every day and doing it all-natural.”

Trout spoke before his team took on the Yankees and Alex Rodriguez, who is appealing his 211-game suspension. Asked about his comments later in the day, Trout repeatedly referred reporters to team player representative C.J. Wilson, although he was willing to say that last week’s suspensions were “a positive step for MLB.”

“For young guys like me, [Bryce] Harper, [Manny] Machado, [Yasiel] Puig, guys that go out there and play hard, it’s good for the game,” he said.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Aug. 13, 1955, which catcher became the youngest player in Red Sox history when he made his debut at the age of 17 in an 18-9 loss to the Senators at Fenway Park?

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Read More: Adam Jones, Mike Trout,
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Yankees’ Mariano Rivera blows three straight saves for first time in career 08.12.13 at 8:17 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MLB: Angels at Yankees, 7 p.m. (ESPN)


‘™¦ When Mariano Rivera was mowing down hitters with regularity earlier in the year, there was speculation that the legendary Yankees closer would reconsider his decision to retire at the end of the season.

That talk has quieted down, especially after Rivera blew his third consecutive save Sunday — the first time in his career he’s squandered three straight — by allowing solo home runs to Tigers sluggers Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez that tied the game at 4. The Yankees managed to pull out the win when Brett Gardner homered in the bottom of the ninth.

“Mo has bailed us out quite a few times,” said Gardner, who also had the winning single in the ninth inning Friday night after Rivera’s second straight blown save.

Rivera now has five blown saves in 40 opportunities this season.

Explained the 43-year-old: “Those balls were up, not where they were supposed to be. I didn’t throw the ball where I wanted. [On Friday] we won, and this one we won, and that’s the main thing.”

Also in the game, Alex Rodriguez hit his first home run, calling it “a step in the right direction” as he moved with 12 homers of Willie Mays for fourth all-time and broke a tie with Stan Musial for sixth on the all-time RBIs list.

Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander offered limited praise for A-Rod.

“I thought he looked great, the pitch he hit for a homer, a pop-up in most ballparks,” Verlander said with a laugh. “I don’t know. It could’ve gone out in some other parks, but here it is kind of a no-doubter.”

The Yankees, who won their first series in over a month, are 10 games behind the AL East-leading Red Sox and seven games behind the A’s for the second wild card spot.

‘™¦ After helping the Orioles to a 10-2 victory over the Giants in San Francisco on Sunday, outfielder Adam Jones tweeted that a fan threw a banana into the outfield during the game. Jones, who is black, lashed out at the unknown perpetrator.


A Giants spokesman said the team received no reports of the incident but that it would review security video.

Later Sunday night, Jones sent out two more tweets apparently related to his earlier comment.

Tweeted Jones: I love how some ppl are defending the actions by someone today. Shows how u really are also, All good wit me. I just #StayHungry.

And: Good chance this means I get off social media soon.

‘™¦ Kevin Durant might be playing in Oklahoma City, but he hasn’t forgotten where he got his start in the NBA. The Thunder star returned to Seattle on Sunday and scored 62 points in a game as part of the Jamal Crawford Summer Pro-Am.

“I just want to say I miss you guys,” Durant told a crown about 3,000 at Seattle Pacific University. “Thank you for the warm welcome. I can’t wait to come back.”

Durant was the NBA Rookie of the Year for the SuperSonics in 2008, the last year the team played in Seattle.

“It’s huge. Seattle feels like he was stolen from us. He’s arguably the second-best player in the NBA, some say he’s the first, so for us to get to see him up close and personal again; it was special for me to get to play with him,” said Seattle native Will Conroy, a journeyman pro who played in the game. “I overpassed it to him like 10 times, but I didn’t care. It was special. Even me, I couldn’t sleep last night. I was excited.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Aug. 12, 1986, which Red Sox pitcher pinch hit and singled in a 6-5 loss to the Royals in Kansas City?

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Read More: Adam Jones, alex rodriguez, Kevin Durant, Mariano Rivera
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Former Bengals running back shot, killed by police 07.11.11 at 7:07 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

No games scheduled


‘™¦ Former Bengals running back David “Deacon” Turner, 56, was shot and killed by police Sunday morning outside a convenience store in Bakersfield, Calif. Turner, who has had numerous run-ins with the law since leaving the NFL in 1980, allegedly attempted to flee an officer who had detained him while investigating a report of teenagers asking adults to purchase alcohol and cigarettes. After initially cooperating, Turner allegedly fought with police and was shot twice.

Turner, a second-round draft pick out of San Diego State, played for the Bengals from 1978-80. In 44 games, he had 142 rushes for 549 yards and a touchdown. In 1979, he led the league in kick returns (55) and was second in yards (1,149).

‘™¦ Oft-troubled Bengals cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones was arrested Sunday for disorderly conduct while intoxicated and resisting arrest.  Jones, who has been suspended from the league multiple times for past transgressions, apologized Sunday but insisted he did nothing wrong while out with his wife to celebrate her birthday. “It’s ridiculous, man,” he said. “I keep on going through the same thing, and it don’t make no sense.”

‘™¦ Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward was arrested for DUI Saturday morning. In the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Joe Starkey writes that Ward’s image has taken a major hit, one year after teammate Ben Roethlisberger destroyed his public image when news of his alleged misdeeds were made public.

‘™¦ Kobe Bryant‘s father, Joe “Jellybean” Bryant, was promoted from assistant to head coach of the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks following the firing of Jennifer Gillom. It’s Bryant second stint as bench boss of the Sparks, who are 4-6 and in fifth place in the Western Conference.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On July 11, 1960, which Red Sox pitcher started (and lost) the All-Star Game?

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Read More: Adam Jones, David Turner, Hines Ward, Joe Bryant
Adam ‘Pacman’ Jones out for the year 10.26.10 at 6:05 pm ET
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Bengals cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones has been placed on the injured reserve list Tuesday after sustaining a herniated disk in his neck Sunday. Jones had been having a successful comeback as a nickel back for the Bengals including a touchdown in Sunday’s loss to the Falcons.

The fourth year player has had a troubled past including not playing for two entire years, but this will be the first time Jones has missed signficant time due to an injury. In five games this season, Jones had 14 combined tackles, one interception, two recovered fumbles and a touchdown.

Read More: Adam Jones, Pacman Jones,
Does Vick deserve a second chance? 08.14.09 at 11:08 am ET
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Music has a way of finding its way into sports. Whether it’s the techno that’s played following a goal in the NHL, the chorus of “ole, ole, ole, ole”  sung by passionate soccer (or Canadiens) fans, or the crazy guy with the kazoo at Fenway, sport and song go hand-in-hand. The song for today? I’m thinking Vince Gill’s “One More Last Chance.”


With Michael Vick set to return to the field for the first time since 2006– and everyone talking about it— it’s the only logical choice.

After dogfighting charges in 2007 landed him behind bars and in home confinement for 23 months, Vick has signed a $1.6 million deal with the Eagles that at the very least will bring plenty of attention to Lincoln Financial Field. Tony Dungy says he’s a changed person, but is he really? More importantly, does it matter?

Earlier this morning, Philadelphia head coach Andy Reid sat at a podium with Vick and Dungy as the two legendary coaches discussed the reform that the scrambling quarterback has faced. As Dungy says that Vick wants to “be a role model for young kids,” how can one not shake their head? I’m not talking about writing off Vick’s quest to be a better person– everyone deserves a second chance, regardless of how many dogs they’ve neglected/killed– but is signing an NFL contract about being a good person?

This isn’t to say that the NFL is a league of criminals. Roger Goodell— love him or hate him– has done a fantastic job of flexing the league’s muscle on those who take advantage of their celebrity, but isn’t the game about what you do on the field? Philadelphia must have thought so if they were willing to take on the media storm that surrounds the acquisition.

Apparently the Eagles weren’t the only team that were interested in bringing in the ’01 top pick. The Bengals (shocker) were also willing to turn a blind eye to his criminal past and give Vick the second chance he had been looking for.

How have these things worked out in the past? The Cowboys famously brought in Adam “Pac Man” Jones via trade in April of ’08 and were burned when it turned out that he had more of a rap sheet than was initially thought. End result? Snip, snip. Last season, the Cowboys also took  chance on defensive tackle Tank Johnson, of DUI/weapons/you-name-it fame. Johnson has since signed with the Bengals, a safe-haven for NFL wrong-doers. Now for a run-down on Cincinnati’s history with law-breaking players.

The Benga– ah, forget it. I’m pretty sure they’re in contact with the creators of 24 to find the guy who played Habib Marwan just so they can be that more dangerous. 

In his introductory press conference, Vick said that prison helped him reach a turning point in his ways. Whether you want to believe that or not, it’s hell of a lot better than when Vick spoke in ’07 about the sacrifices he was prepared to make regarding the company he keeps.

“If I’ve got to be fishing or playing golf every day to keep myself away from everybody else, that’s what I’m gonna be doing,” Vick said.

Poor guy. At the very least Vick is displaying what could at least be interpreted as remorse.

It would be naive to think that nobody– whether it be PETA, angry Falcons fans, etc.– will criticize this move. However, now that Vick’s in Philadelphia, he has the support of at least 52 people. As far as Atlanta goes, those who invested money on No. 7 jerseys are licking their chops as they wait for Dec. 6.

What will the future hold for Vick? Will he make contributions as a receiver/back? Will the Eagles exercise pick up his option for a second season? Will he end up falling into old patterns and be the next Adam Jones? The questions are flying, and Vick has given the most important answer.

“You only get one shot at a second chance.”

So let’s operate under the assumption that Vick is just a football player. The man has paid his price, filed for bankruptcy, and wants to start anew. He may not be able to be a quarterback, but let’s at least give him the opportunity to be a professional.

Read More: Adam Jones, Bengals, Eagles, Goodell