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Seahawks Wide Receiver Sidney Rice Retiring at Age 27

Seahawks Wide Receiver Sidney Rice Retiring at Age 27

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — After seven seasons in the NFL, Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Sidney Rice has decided to retire from the sport of football at the age of 27.
ESPN is reporting that Rice is walking away from the game because of a history or concussions.
“After careful consideration and seven wonderful years playing in the National Football League, including the last three for the Seattle Seahawks, I have decided to retire from playing in the National Football League,” Rice said in the statement. “I have enjoyed my experiences with all of my coaches, teammates and passionate Seahawks fans.”
Rice was a second-round draft pick out of South Carolina in 2007 by the Minnesota Vikings. His best season came in 2009 when he caught 83 passes for 1,312 yards with eight touchdowns.
Injuries have kept him off the field for much of the time since that season. He played a full season in 2012, but he’s missed 25 games from 2010-20-13.
Rice had re-signed with the Seahawks for $1 million during the offseason.
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Rob Gronkowski Cleared for Training Camp

Rob Gronkowski Cleared for Training Camp

Elsa/Getty Images(FOXBOROUGH, Mass.) — New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski has been cleared to play by doctors and will be ready for training camp on Thursday, head coach Bill Belichick said Wednesday.
“It’s a positive,” said veteran offensive lineman Logan Mankins, one of the Patriots’ captains. “We were all hoping Gronk would have a good recovery and so far he has. Anytime you can have Gronk on the field, it’s great.”
Gronkowski underwent surgery on his right ACL on Jan. 9 and has fully recovered.
Gronkowski said last week that he plans on playing in all 16 games this season. “I’m always antsy to get back on the field, no matter when it is. I just want to play football. I love playing the game,” he said then.
The Patriots open up against the Miami Dolphins on Sept. 7.
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Rangers Re-Sign Mats Zuccarello

Rangers Re-Sign Mats Zuccarello

Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images(NEW YORK) — The New York Rangers and forward Mats Zuccarello agreed to a one-year deal worth $3.5-million on Tuesday.
Zuccarello and New York avoided salary arbitration by getting a deal done.
Zuccarello scored a career high 19 goals and 40 assists in 77 games last season.
The Rangers made it to their first Stanley Cup since 1994, but were defeated by the Los Angeles Kings in five games.
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Indians Recall Danny Salazar

Indians Recall Danny Salazar

Brian D. Kersey/Getty Images(MINNEAPOLIS) — Pitching prospect Danny Salazar has been recalled by the Cleveland Indians.
The Indians wasted no time getting Salazar on the mound, giving him the start in Tuesday night’s 8 to 2 win over the Minnesota Twins.
Salazar was sharp, throwing five innings, giving up one run, walking three while striking out six.
The team had high hopes for the 24-year-old this season after he started 10 games last season pitching 52 innings, with a 3.12 ERA, striking out 65 batters while walking only 15. But Salazar wasn’t as sharp and was sent to Triple-A Columbus on May 16 after starting eight games, during which he compiled a 1-4 record, 5.53 ERA, and a 1.62 WHIP.
To make room for Salazar the Indians optioned reliever C.C. Lee to Columbus.
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Scoreboard Roundup – 7/22/14

Scoreboard Roundup – 7/22/14

Hemera/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — MLB: Toronto Blue Jays 7 (52-49) – Boston Red Sox 3 (47-53)
Miami Marlins 6 (47-52) – Atlanta Braves 5 (54-46)
Chicago Cubs 6 (41-57) – San Diego Padres 0 (43-56)
Pittsburgh Pirates 12 (53-47) – Los Angeles Dodgers 7 (56-46)
Milwaukee Brewers 4 (56-45) – Cincinnati Reds 3 (51-49)
Cleveland Indians 8 (51-49) – Minnesota Twins 2 (45-54)
Tampa Bay Rays 7 (48-53) – St. Louis Cardinals 2 (54-46) 
Kansas City Royals 7 (49-50) – Chicago White Sox 1 (48-53)
New York Yankees 2 (51-48) – Texas Rangers 1 (40-60) – 14 Innings
Washington Nationals 7 (55-43) – Colorado Rockies 4 (40-60)
San Francisco Giants  9 (56-44) – Philadelphia Phillies 6 (43-57) – 14 Innings
Arizona Diamondbacks 5 (44-37) – Detroit Tigers 4 (44-57)
New York Mets 3 (47-53) – Seattle Mariners 1 (53-47)
Baltimore Orioles 4 (55-44) – Los Angeles Angels 2 (59-40)
Houston Astros 3 (42-58) – Oakland Athletics 2 (61-38) – 12 Innings
 
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ESPN: Donald Sterling Meets with Steve Ballmer

ESPN: Donald Sterling Meets with Steve Ballmer

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images(NEW YORK) –  Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling met with former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer on Monday in Los Angeles to discuss the pending sale of the team, according to ESPN.
Sterling and Ballmer met for about 90 minutes at Sterling’s house in Beverly Hills in their first face-to-face meeting since Ballmer negotiated the record-setting sale with Shelly Sterling on May 29.  Sources say it was a “friendly conversation.”
A settlement has yet to be reached, but the sale of the team will reportedly be worth $2 billion. 
NBA commissioner Adam Silver said last week that he wasn’t sure a new owner of the Clippers would be in place by the start of next season. 
The original agreement called for the sale to close by July 15, with a possible extension to Aug. 15, but Donald Sterling has vowed to fight his termination and the sale of the team.
Ballmer is ready to buy the Clippers, but an issue in that case is whether Shelly Sterling was authorized to sell the franchise to him without the authorization of her husband.
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Top WR Nate Craig Commits to Auburn

Top WR Nate Craig Commits to Auburn

BananaStock/Getty Images(NEW YORK) –  Nate Craig, the No. 1 wide receiver and No. 6 player overall in the ESPN Junior 300, verbally committed to play football for the University of Auburn on Monday night.
Craig chose the Tigers over USC, Ohio State, and Alabama.
“I just thought Auburn was the best fit for me,” Craig said. “I got to go up there this weekend and spend some time with coach [Dameyune] Craig and coach [Gus] Malzahn and that just sealed the deal for me.”
“I was at Alabama for the whole week, but just building a relationship with the Auburn coaches and coach Craig was a big impact on my recruitment and did a great job. With coach Malzahn I got to spend some time with him and then I sat down with my mom and decided to make a decision,” he continued.
The 6-foot-2, 202-pound Craig caught 37 passes for 502 yards and 12 touchdowns as a sophomore for Tampa Catholic High School this past season. 
Auburn now has three commits for the class of 2016.
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Dan Uggla Signs with Giants

Dan Uggla Signs with Giants

Tony Firriolo/MLB Photos via Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Just three days after being released by the Atlanta Braves, Dan Uggla signed a minor-league contract with the San Francisco Giants on Monday. The second baseman reported to Triple-A Fresno upon signing the deal.
“This is a chance for us to take a look at him and evaluate him, and a chance for him to go down and get his timing and get some playing time,” said Giants manager Bruce Bochy. “At some point we’re going to have to make a call. I can’t say he’s going to be up here in the next few days, no. He needs some playing time right now.”
A three-time All-Star, Uggla was in his fourth season with Atlanta, but was hitting an abysmal .162 with just 10 RBI and two home runs in 48 games. The 34-year-old struck out 495 times in 451 games with the Braves from 2011-13 while also putting together a franchise record 33-game hitting streak.
Uggla underwent eye surgery last summer and was left off the Braves postseason roster before being reinserted in Spring Training.
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First Female Referee Assigned to Big 12 Football

First Female Referee Assigned to Big 12 Football

iStockPhoto/Thinkstock(DALLAS) — Big 12 Football will make another bit of history when the college football season kicks off this fall. Commissioner Bob Bowlsby announced on Monday that the first female referee in league history has been assigned to work one of its games.
Bowlsby said Catherine “Cat” Conti will be on the field during Kansas’ home opener on Sept. 6 against Southeast Missouri State. Conti had previously worked as an official with the Southland Conference.
The league commissioner noted that Conti has paid her dues and earned a chance to be on the field. Bowlsby also explained that Walt Anderson, Big 12 officiating supervisor, assigned Conti to the game because, “she is just a darned good official.”
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Michael Cooper Diagnosed with Cancer

Michael Cooper Diagnosed with Cancer

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(ATLANTA) — Atlanta Dream head coach and former Los Angeles Lakers guard Michael Cooper has been diagnosed with early stage tongue cancer. Cooper has taken a leave of absence from the team and will have surgery this week, the Dream said on Monday.
Assistant coach Karleen Thompson will fill in for the 58-year-old, who is expected to miss two weeks. Cooper will have surgery at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University in Atlanta and is expected to make a full recovery.
“I’m fortunate that my condition was diagnosed early, and this episode illustrates the importance of screening and early detection,” said Cooper. “I know the team will be in good hands with Coach Thompson at the helm during my absence, and I look forward to returning to the court soon.”
Cooper won five NBA titles while playing for the Lakers during the “Showtime” era. He also won consecutive WNBA titles as the coach of the Los Angeles Sparks. This is Cooper’s first season with the Dream, which currently holds a 15-6 record.
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Big 12 Commissioner: “Cheating Pays”

Big 12 Commissioner: “Cheating Pays”

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images(DALLAS) — During his annual state of the league address at the Big 12 media day, commissioner Bob Bowlsby proclaimed Monday that “cheating pays” in intercollegiate athletics.
“Enforcement is broken. The infractions committee hasn’t had a hearing in almost a year,” said Bowlsby. “It’s not an understatement to say cheating pays presently. If you seek to conspire to certainly bend the rules, you can do it successfully and probably not get caught in most occasions.”
Bowlsby continued by saying he does not believe cheating is a widespread epidemic, but that he fears for the future of the NCAA and its student-athletes.
“We certainly are operating in a strange environment in that we have lawsuits,” explained the commissioner. “I think all of that in the end will cause programs to be eliminated.”
While slamming college sports’ governing body, Bowlsby did come to the defense of the collegiate model, saying that he was against the unionization of student-athletes.
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Scoreboard Roundup – 7/21/14

Scoreboard Roundup – 7/21/14

Hemera/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — MLB: Boston Red Sox 14 (47-52) – Toronto Blue Jays 1 (51-49)
Los Angeles Dodgers 5 (56-45) – Pittsburgh Pirates 2 (52-47)
San Francisco Giants 7 (55-44) – Philadelphia Phillies 4 (43-56)
Texas Rangers 4 (40-59) – New York Yankees 2 (50-48)
Miami Marlins 3 (46-52) – Atlanta Braves 1 (54-45) – 10 Innings
Chicago White Sox 3 (48-52) – Kansas City Royals 1 (48-50)
Milwaukee Brewers 5 (55-45) – Cincinnati Reds 2 (51-48)
Minnesota Twins 4 (45-53) – Cleveland Indians 3 (50-49)
Washington Nationals 7 (54-43) – Colorado Rockies 2 (40-59) 
Detroit Tigers 4 (55-41) – Arizona Diamondbacks 3 (43-56)
Seattle Mariners 5 (53-46) – New York Mets 2 (46-53)
Baltimore Orioles 4 (54-44) – Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 2 (59-39)
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Colby Lewis Angry After Bunt from Colby Rasmus

Colby Lewis Angry After Bunt from Colby Rasmus

Texas Rangers/MLB (NEW YORK) –  They may share the same first name, but Texas Rangers starting pitcher Colby Lewis and Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Colby Rasmus have two entirely different opinions on what transpired during the 5th inning of Saturday’s contest between their respective teams.
Lewis and Rasmus exchanged words after Rasmus laid down a bunt single with two outs and the Blue Jays leading 2-0.  The Rangers were playing the shift, but Lewis still wasn’t too pleased with Rasmus’ decision to bunt.
“I told [Rasmus] I didn’t appreciate it,” Lewis told MLB.com. “You’re up by two runs with two outs and you lay down a bunt. I don’t think that’s the way the game should be played.”
After the contest, Rasmus said he was not sure why Lewis would take offense to his decision to lay down a bunt.
“I’m just trying to help my team and he didn’t like it — so sorry about it,” Rasmus said to MLB.com. “I’m not here to try to please the other side, I’m here to help my team, and I had an opportunity where I could, and I took advantage of it.”
Lewis took the loss for the Rangers Sunday and fell to 6-7 on the year.  Rasmus is hitting just .223 for the Blue Jays this season.
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Florida’s DeVon Walker Out for Season with Knee Injury

Florida’s DeVon Walker Out for Season with Knee Injury

Mitchell Layton/Getty Images(GAINESVILLE, Fla.) –  Florida guard DeVon Walker is expected to miss all of next season with a knee injury.
The Junior tore his right ACL last Friday. 
Walker played in 35 games for the Gators last season, averaging 2.4 points and 1.2 rebounds in just over 12 minutes per game. 
Despite coming off the bench and playing limited minutes, Walker was fourth on the team in blocked shots, with 13, and in three-pointers made, with 19. 
Walker’s role was expected to increase this next year with fellow guard Scottie Wilbekin having graduated.
With Walker sidelined, former Rutgers guard Eli Carter and freshmen Chris Chiozza and Brandone Francis all could see more playing time for the Gators in 2014-15.
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Bills DT Marcell Dareus Fails Conditioning Test

Bills DT Marcell Dareus Fails Conditioning Test

Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images(PITTSFORD, N.Y.) –  The Buffalo Bills opened their 2014 training camp over the weekend, but one of their best defensive players did not come prepared.
Defensive tackle Marcell Dareus failed a conditioning test when he reported to camp, the team has confirmed.  Dareus remained on the active/non-football injury list as the Bills held their first training camp practice Sunday evening.
“He’s not the only one, but obviously you want your players to come in and be ready to go,” coach Doug Marrone said Sunday. “We’re here for a long period of time and we’ll make up for it.”
Dareus reportedly will not re-take the conditioning test until Thursday, at the earliest. 
The Pro Bowler was also arrested twice this offseason and could face a suspension from the NFL.  Nonetheless, Marrone expects him to play at a high level this season.
“He’ll be in shape and ready to play,” Marrone said. “Right now he needs to focus on getting himself ready, getting himself on the field, and focus on football.
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Chris Snee Reportedly Set to Announce Retirement

Chris Snee Reportedly Set to Announce Retirement

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Chris Snee is reportedly ready to hang up his cleats and shoulder pads. A source close to the New York Giants lineman says he has scheduled a meeting for Monday morning with team officials to tell them he’s considering retiring.
While his final decision is not 100% made, the 32-year-old would not be able to start the season on time anyway thanks to a longer than expected recovery from elbow surgery in November.
After missing the team’s minicamp in June because of the extended rehab, New York and Snee each began weighing their options. The Giants gave the majority of reps to third-year player Brandon Mosley while also letting their second-round pick, Weston Richburg, see some time.
Snee, a four-time Pro Bowler, could be entering his 11th season as an offensive lineman for the Giants.
Snee played just three games in 2013 and was placed on injured reserve on October 4 due to an ailing hip injury. The 2004 draft pick out of Boston College helped the Giants to two Super Bowls in his 10-year career. He is also the son-in-law of Giants head coach Tom Coughlin.
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Angels Walk-Off for 30th Comeback Win

Angels Walk-Off for 30th Comeback Win

Brian D. Kersey/Getty Images(ANAHEIM, Calif.) — The Los Angeles Angels scored two runs off former teammate Fernando Rodney to walk-off against Seattle (52-46) for the second time in three days.
The 6-5 victory was the 30th time this season that the Angels (59-38) have come from behind to get a win.
What made the win a little more intriguing was the back-and-forth between the Angels and their old closer. Rodney, who entered the game with one out in the eighth, used his trademark “bow-and-arrow” celebration after Kole Calhoun flew out to end the inning.
That stirred up the LA dugout as Albert Pujols doubled to score Mike Trout and tie the game off of Rodney. The two then traded arrows before Grant Green singled home the winning run, handing Rodney the loss.
“That’s his thing,” Pujols said of the celebration. “I’ve known Rodney for 15 years, so we go way back. And every time I see him, I tell him I’m going to do that to him if I get a big hit against him.”
Rodney said after the game that he was directing the arrow towards the Angels fans who booed up him upon entering the game. The 12-year veteran spent two seasons with Los Angeles and was just 17-for-28 in save opportunities. 
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Sources: Cavaliers to Sign Top Pick Wiggins

Sources: Cavaliers to Sign Top Pick Wiggins

Christian Petersen/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Despite the rumored talks between Minnesota and Cleveland that include trading Andrew Wiggins for Kevin Love, sources now say the Cavaliers plan to sign their top draft pick later this week. Those same sources also say the delay in signing Wiggins has nothing to do with the apparent trade talks.
Instead, the Cavs have been reportedly weighing how to use the remaining $1.4 million available to them after signing the Kansas forward. Wiggins’ contract will net him in the neighborhood of a reported $5.5 million as a rookie. Once signed, Cleveland must wait at least 30 days before they can trade him. 
After the Cavs sign Wiggins, they are expected to ink Mike Miller to a two-year $5.6 million deal.
Cleveland has also been rumored to have interest in Ray Allen, a teammate with Miller in Miami. However, the Cavaliers would only be able to give Allen the league minimum of $1.4 million.
All of these front office moves have been to try and build the best possible team around returning forward LeBron James.
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Red Sox Sweep Royals Behind Lester’s Gem

Red Sox Sweep Royals Behind Lester’s Gem

Lisa Blumenfield/Getty Images(BOSTON) — Jon Lester tossed eight shutout innings, striking out eight batters in a 6-0 Red Sox win over Kansas City on Sunday. The win was the fourth in a row for Boston (46-52), giving them a sweep over the Royals (48-49) at Fenway Park.
The Boston ace dominated, allowing no earned runs for the third time in four starts.
Throughout the 2014 season, the talk about Lester off the field has been surrounding his impending free agency. The southpaw can become a free agent at the end of the season and has been pitching without negotiating a new contract during the year. In his last seven starts, Lester is 4-0 with a 0.85 earned run average.
“You’ve got to take each one as an individual,” Lester said. “If I’m out there thinking about what I did last time, I’m not worried about the right things.”
His offense gave Lester more than enough run support, beginning in the first with an RBI groundout from Dustin Pedroia. Daniel Nava drove in three runs on the day, including a two-run double in the third. The game was blown open in the fourth after David Ross’ two-run home run made it a 5-0 Red Sox lead.
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Scoreboard Roundup – 7/20/14

Scoreboard Roundup – 7/20/14

Getty Images/Hemera(NEW YORK) — MLB:  Miami Marlins 3 (45-52) – San Francisco Giants 2 (54-44)
New York Yankees 3 (50-47) – Cincinnati Reds 2 (51-47)
Washington Nationals 5 (53-43) – Milwaukee Brewers 4 (54-45)
Toronto Blue Jays 9 (51-48) – Texas Rangers 6 (39-59)
Pittsburgh Pirates 5 (52-46) – Colorado Rockies 3 (40-58)
Detroit Tigers 5 (54-41) – Cleveland Indians 1 (50-48)
Boston Red Sox 6 (46-52) – Kansas City Royals 0 (48-49)
Atlanta Braves 8 (54-44) – Philadelphia Phillies 2 (43-54)
Houston Astros 11 (41-58) – Chicago White Sox 7 (47-52)
Tampa Bay Rays 5 (47-53) – Minnesota Twins 3 (44-53)
Los Angeles Angels 6 (59-38) – Seattle Mariners 5 (52-46)
Arizona Diamondbacks 3 (43-56) – Chicago Cubs 2 (40-57)
San Diego Padres 2 (43-55) – New York Mets 1 (46-52)
Oakland Athletics 10 (61-37) – Baltimore Orioles 2 (53-44)
Los Angeles Dodgers 4 (55-45) – St. Louis Cardinals 3 (54-45)
Golf:  Rory McIlroy wins the 2014 Open Championship.
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