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15 Jun

It was reported earlier this week that the Lakers and Pelicans were exploring a deal that would send Anthony Davis to Los Angeles, and with just a few days left until the 2019 NBA Draft, a trade has been reportedly been agreed upon. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski broke the news Saturday that the Pelicans will send Davis to the Lakers in exchange for a package that includes Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart, the No. 4 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, and two future first-round picks.

With the Golden State Warriors looking ahead to a tough 2019-20 season due to injuries and free agency uncertainty, the door to the Finals in the Western Conference is open – and LeBron James now has a superstar teammate that can help the Lakers contend for a title. The Lakers also managed to get the deal done without trading away Kyle Kuzma, who the Pelicans were reportedly interested in.


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15 Jun

Patrick Reed came to the 18th tee at Pebble Beach on Friday evening at even-par for the tournament, in a tie for 32nd place. He left the 18th green with one of his wedges snapped into two pieces.

Reed made a mess of the par-5 18th from tee to green, and put himself in a tough position by missing the fairway with a drive. Reed flew the green with his third shot, and then ended up in thick rough on the other side after a poor recovery. Needing to hole out to save par, Reed’s shot traveled just five feet and came to rest in the rough, and he responded by snapping his club over his leg.

All of a sudden, Reed needed to get up and down from the rough just to avoid missing the cut. He managed to hack out to three feet and made the putt to drop to 2-over par with a double-bogey 7. Had Reed made a triple bogey, he would have missed the weekend.


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15 Jun

Devastating injuries to Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson marred the NBA Finals, and the Warriors now enter one of the toughest offseasons the organization has ever had to navigate. The Warriors are set to move into a lavish new arena in San Francisco at the start of next season, and but coach Steve Kerr said Friday that Golden State will have a very different look for the 2019-20 season.

Klay Thompson, who suffered an ACL tear in Game 6 on Thursday, will become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the month. Kevin Durant, who tore his Achilles in Game 5, has the ability to opt out of the final year of his Warriors contract and become a free agent – but he’ll be out for the entirety of the next season.

It has been reported by ESPN’s Brian Windhorst that the Warriors will offer max contracts to both Durant and Thompson. While Durant’s plans are unknown, Thompson will be back with the Warriors next season, according to his dad, two-time NBA champion Mychal Thompson. Thompson told the San Francisco Chronicle’s Connor Letourneau that there is “no question” that his son will re-sign with the Warriors this summer.

If Durant and Thompson both remain in Golden State, the biggest question is how much money will Warriors ownership be willing to spend to replenish the roster, given that the Warriors would be down two superstars for the majority of the year.

Draymond Green has one year remaining on his contract, but if Golden State signs Durant and Thompson to max deals, the Warriors could be on the hook for a projected $175 million tax payment, according to Warriors Wire. The Warriors have been willing to pay luxury tax in the past, but such a bill would be triple what the team paid in luxury tax this season.

Warriors owner Joe Lacob, however, has said that money isn’t an issue, and the team will pay players “what they deserve.”

Via The Athletic:

“We can do whatever we want (financially). And you should expect that that’s not going to be a reason this team … doesn’t stay great going forward. We have the capital to pay our players what they deserve. And we will.”


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14 Jun

Jalen Ramsey wants a new contract. His current deal, which he signed in 2016, does not expire until after the 2020 season and will cost the team about $21.1 million in cap space over that time. That’s not a bad deal, particularly for Jacksonville. They get an elite talent at one of the NFL’s premium positions for an average cap hit that would rank outside the top-10 for cornerbacks in 2018.

But if Ramsey is willing to go to the negotiating table now (and he is), the Jaguars should jump at the opportunity to join him there. Instead, the team that was willing to give Blake Bortles a contract extension worth $54 million a year earlier than it had to has decided it will not be giving Ramsey a contract extension in 2019. That’s according to Ramsey himself …

The benefit of getting a deal done sooner rather than later is obvious. Ramsey will undoubtedly ask the Jaguars to reset the cornerback market whenever the deal gets done. He said as much during a live stream with teammate Leonard Fournette …

By getting a deal done now, and basing it off the record-breaking deal Miami gave Xavien Howard (five years, $75.25 million), the Jaguars could save themselves a lot of money and cap space down the line. That’s what the Eagles did when they signed Carson Wentz two years before they had to. With top corners like Byron Jones and Marcus Peters (though he may need a bounce-back season to garner a monster payday) slated for free agency in 2020 and a salary cap that’s always on the rise, Ramsey’s price tag will only go up from here.

If Jacksonville’s front office wasn’t led by Tom Coughlin, whose face burns red with anger every time a player misses voluntary mini camp or, like, has an opinion, I’d imagine the team would not hesitate to give Ramsey a long-term deal. What team wouldn’t want to lock down one of the few corners who can hold his own while matching up with the likes of Odell Beckham, Tyreek Hill and Antonio Brown one-on-one?

The prevailing narrative is that Ramsey’s play took a step back in 2018, which could give the Jags’ front office pause, but that’s not the story the film is telling. His Pro Football Focus grade took a hit — 91.3 in 2017 and 72.8 in 2018 — but PFF doesn’t adjust for the receivers Ramsey is going up against — it does, however, adjust for the coverage assignment (zone, man-to-man, etc.) — so covering No. 1 receivers week in and week out, as Ramsey did, naturally dragged his grade down.

(I also disagree with some of the individual grades PFF gave him. The Giants and Chiefs games, for example. He received “below average” grades for those performances. After reviewing the film, I thought he played Beckham to a draw and got the best of Hill. PFF did give Ramsey an “elite” grade for his work against Pittsburgh.)

Based on PFF’s WAR metric, Ramsey, at his best, is worth “about one win” above replacement. That may not sound significant, but consider the fact that he’s one of 53 players on the active roster and Aaron Donald’s 2017 season, which was historically good, earned a WAR of 1.8. One win is a big deal over the course of an NFL season.

When Ramsey is at the top of his game, he is one of the most valuable defensive players in the league and a transcendent talent at the cornerback position. He’ll eventually be paid as such. If the Jaguars are smart, they’ll be the ones to do it — and sooner rather than later.


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14 Jun

It was already going to be an offseason filled with uncertainty for the Golden State Warriors long before they reached yet another NBA Finals.

Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant and DeMarcus Cousins would all enter free agency (assuming Durant declined his option), with the Steph Curry, Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala as the holdovers from the dynasty Dubs.

But then the Finals happened. Durant ruptured his Achilles and Thompson tore his ACL. Cousins could seek a bigger contract elsewhere. And all of this comes at the end of a rocky season for the franchise despite making it to the Finals again. The new arena in San Francisco looms along with the expectations that come with it.

We shouldn’t immediately declare the Warriors dynasty completely dead on arrival here. But with all of that uncertainty, you can see it teetering on the precipice.

There are all kinds of possibilities regarding Durant and Thompson. Durant could exercise his player option to stay with the team while he rehabs from a devastating injury, or decline it and re-sign anyway. Thompson might love the franchise and playing with Curry so much that he sticks around. But that would send the franchise into tax hell. Let’s also throw in that Green will be a free agent in 2020.

Even if Golden State goes that route, they could be without two of the best scorers in basketball for an entire season, one that will be the first in the brand-new Chase Center.

Plus, by locking up four superstars, there’s not much wiggle room to give the team the kind of depth it needs, one of the reasons the Dubs fell short in the Finals (although, as my colleague Ted Berg pointed out, the Warriors got SO CLOSE despite all that hurdle and the others).

If Durant bolts and Thompson signs a contract elsewhere, the Warriors still have Curry, one of the NBA’s megastars. Maybe that’s enough to attract another star to join them, but the team still needs more than just a core of three game-changing players.

There’s no great solution either way. Any route the team takes is going to have both negative short-term and long-term ramifications thanks to NBA salary cap rules and penalties.

If this is indeed the end of the dynasty, what a run it’s been. Now, for the first time in years, the Warriors face an scary, uncertain future.


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14 Jun

Drake FaceTimed with Steph Curry after Game 6 to deliver a classy message

Drake FaceTimed with Steph Curry after Game 6 to deliver a classy message

I found this on FTW and wanted to share:

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13 Jun

Jordan Spieth made two big mistakes on the eighth hole at Pebble Beach during his first round of the U.S. Open and then he was heard blaming his caddie for those mistakes, which wasn’t a good look at all and rightfully had fans watching at home bashing the former No. 1 player in the world.

His first mistake came on his tee shot, which ran out too far and fell off the cliff. He then took a drop and hit his approach shot over the green and into the deep rough.

He wasn’t happy with that all and let his caddie, Michael Greller, as he was heard saying on TV: “Two perfect shots, Michael. You got me one in the water and one over the green.”

Here’s the moment:

Spieth was able to save bogey on the hole but fans weren’t impressed with how he spoke to his caddie:


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13 Jun

The 2019 U.S. Open gets underway on Thursday at Pebble Beach Golf Links, and tournament favorites Brooks Koepka and Tiger Woods will start their opening rounds late in the afternoon. Koepka, who just won a second consecutive PGA Championship a few weeks ago, will try to win his third straight U.S. Open this weekend, while Woods can capture major No. 16.

Televised coverage will begin at 12:30 p.m. ET on FS1. Coverage will shift to FOX at 7:30 p.m. ET. Featured group coverage will be streamed online at USOpen.com.

Here are the notable tee times for Thursday. You can see the entire list of tee times here.

10:40 a.m. ET: Bubba Watson, Haotong Li, J.B. Holes

10:51 a.m. ET: Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Marc Leishman (featured group)

10:51 a.m. ET*: Zach Johnson, Martin Kaymer, Ernie Els

11:02 a.m. ET: Rickie Fowler, Jason Day, Si Woo Kim

11:02 a.m. ET*: Justin Thomas, Bryson DeChambeau, Kevin Kisner

11:13 a.m. ET*: Dustin Johnson, Phil Mickelson, Graeme McDowell

11:24 a.m. ET*: Sergio Garcia, Tommy Fleetwood, Hideki Matsuyama

11:35 a.m. ET*: Patrick Reed, Louis Oosthuizen, Jhonattan Vegas

4:14 p.m. ET*: Kevin Na, Rafa Cabrera Bello, Keegan Bradley

4:25 p.m. ET: Paul Casey, Patrick Cantlay, Lucas Glover

4:25 p.m. ET*: Jim Furyk, Henrik Stenson, Brandt Snedeker

4:47 p.m. ET: Brooks Koepka, Francesco Molinari, Viktor Hovland (a)

4:47 p.m. ET*: Matt Kuchar, Adam Scott, Webb Simpson

4:58 p.m. ET: Tony Finau, Jimmy Walker, Ian Poulter

5:09 p.m. ET: Tiger Woods, Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose


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13 Jun

NHL fans sure enjoyed seeing Brad Marchand cry after Bruins' Game 7 loss

NHL fans sure enjoyed seeing Brad Marchand cry after Bruins’ Game 7 loss

I found this on FTW and wanted to share:

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For more great sports stories …

*visit For The Win: https://www.ftw.usatoday.com
*follow @ForTheWin: https://www.twitter.com/forthewin
*like FTW on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/usatodayftw


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13 Jun

Kevin Durant’s ruptured Achilles is a devastating blow to one of the NBA’s best players and best teammates.

The 30-year-old will be a free agent this summer if he doesn’t sign his player option with the Warriors, but he faces nine to 12 months of rehab after the injury took him out of Game 5 of the NBA Finals on Monday.

Durant was playing for the first time in nine games following a calf injury in Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinals versus the Houston Rockets. He played 12 minutes before leaving the court in the second quarter.

On Wednesday, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr opened up about the decision to clear KD for the game, saying that the decision for Durant to play was a collaborative effort but that certainly the people involved would reverse the decision in hindsight.

“He was cleared to play by everybody involved,” Kerr said. “Now, would we go back and do it over again? Damn right. But that’s easy to say after the results.”

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