Footballer on women assault charge - West Ham star in women attack charge - Liverpool beat Man City in New York - Liverpool win a penalty shootout against Premier League champions Manchester City in New York after the two teams draw 2-2. Dodgers beat Braves 3-2 for 5th straight win (Yahoo Sports) - Matt Kemp singled in the winning run in the bottom of the 10th inning, Zack Greinke struck out a season-high 13 and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Atlanta Braves 3-2 on Wednesday night for their season-best fifth straight victory. Kemp scored the Dodgers' first two runs of the game, including his 11th homer leading off the second. Pinch-hitter Justin Turner singled to open the 10th and took second on a wild pitch by David Hale (3-3). The Braves tied the game 2-2 on Justin Upton's home run off closer Kenley Jansen leading off the ninth. NI guaranteed nine boxing medals - Northern Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales are all assured of medals in the boxing ring at the Commonwealth Games. Toronto beats Boston 6-1 to sweep Red Sox (Yahoo Sports) - BOSTON (AP) -- Mark Buehrle pitched 6 2-3 innings to earn his first win in almost two months and Dioner Navarro had three hits and three RBIs to lead the Toronto Blue Jays to their fifth consecutive victory, a 6-1 win over the slumping Boston Red Sox. Kluber outpitches Hernandez in 2-0 win (Yahoo Sports) - Corey Kluber had three-hitter to outpitch Felix Hernandez for his first career shutout, Yan Gomes had a two-run double and the Cleveland Indians beat the Seattle Mariners 2-0 on Wednesday night. Kluber (11-6) held the Mariners to three singles and no walks while striking out eight. Hernandez (11-3) didn't allow a base runner until Carlos Santana drew a leadoff walk in the fifth. Hernandez, who gave up four hits, was pulled after the seventh. Stern sees Sterling saga ending well, lauds Silver (Yahoo Sports) - NEW YORK (AP) -- Former Commissioner David Stern praised the NBA's handling of the Donald Sterling controversy and predicts it will ''end well'' for the league. Riley speaks out, insists Heat will be competitive (Yahoo Sports) - One of the last things Miami Heat President Pat Riley told LeBron James before free agency began this summer was that he would be selling potential players on the notion of playing alongside a four-time NBA MVP. Riley made that revelation Wednesday, shortly after the Heat completed the signing of Chris Bosh to a $118 million, five-year contract and essentially wrapped up their roster-rebuilding project for next season, the first of the post-LeBron era in Miami. The Heat have 12 players locked in for next season, Bosh and Dwyane Wade foremost among them, and Riley expects the four-time defending Eastern Conference champions to compete once again this coming year. James is now back with the Cleveland Cavaliers, the team that he left for Miami in 2010, four trips to the NBA Finals and two championships ago. England pair win gymnastics golds - England's Max Whitlock and Claudia Fragapane both win their second gold medals in Glasgow in the all-around competitions.

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The Philadelphia 76ers, shockingly, are reportedly against a proposed revamp of the NBA lottery [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 30, 2014, 10:19 pm]
The argument against NBA teams tanking games is tired and silly. For decades, pro squads have given up on entire seasons in order to develop young talent and secure high end draft picks, but it wasn’t until 2013-14 that the hyperdrive media and those who tend to fall in lockstep with their favorite TV/radio shows and/or writers started to kvetch about things. Recently, Grantland’s Zach Lowe broke the news about the league considering a percentage-based variation on determining draft lottery odds. We strongly discouraged the league to pass on the idea, and we weren’t alone. The Philadelphia 76ers – the squad that lost 26 straight games last season while sitting out its top draft pick, a franchise that may sit its current top draft pick out for most or not all of 2014-15 – are also strongly objecting to the idea. Thanks a lot, Sixers. Way to tramp down the clichés and play against role. From Brian Windhorst at ESPN: The NBA is pushing toward changes to the draft lottery system by next season but is facing a strong objection from the Philadelphia 76ers, the franchise that could suffer the most from it, multiple sources told ESPN.com. […] The rough draft of this plan was met with opposition by 76ers management, which is in the midst of a multiseason rebuilding project that is dependent on a high pick next year. The 76ers, sources said, are hoping to get the NBA to delay the plan's implementation for at least a year because it would act as a de facto punishment while just playing by the rules that have been in place. The 76ers, however, may struggle to gain support from Silver or fellow teams for holding off on the changes. Philadelphia's planned sink to the bottom has caused a drag on revenues in one of the league's largest markets and has upset some other teams, sources said. The Sixers want the NBA to pass on preventing them from doing the best possible job it can to improve its franchise. This is essentially what this boils down to. The 76ers wil

The 10-man rotation, starring the shot Chandler Parsons has to 'live with [for] the rest of [his] life' [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 30, 2014, 9:56 pm]
A look around the league and the Web that covers it. It's also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren't always listed in order of importance. That's for you, dear reader, to figure out. C: Forward Center. Sure, they're in Sin City to vie for spots on the U.S. senior men's national team roster for the upcoming FIBA World Cup, but as soon as Damian Lillard and Chandler Parsons got together, you knew exactly what they were going to talk about. Casey Holdahl takes us inside the conversation. PF: SB Nation, USA TODAY Sports and The Triangle. Let Paul Flannery, Jeff Zillgitt and Jared Dubin introduce you to Michele Roberts, the new executive director of the National Basketball Players Association, who might be the only person standing between all of us and a lockout come the summer of 2017. SF: Eye on Basketball. Zach Harper looks a few months into the future and wonders what we can, or should, expect from a re-upped Dwyane Wade in a post-LeBron context with the Miami Heat next season. (Also, Zach had some dork on his podcast today.) SG: The New York Times. Scott Cacciola on the divergent paths forward being taken by the Los Angeles Clippers, who want nothing more than to shed their Donald Sterling-dominated past, and the Los Angeles Lakers, who want nothing more than to focus on their Showtime days to avoid facing the future. PG: Denver Post. Christopher Dempsey on Arron Afflalo occupying a different role in his return to the Denver Nuggets, going from just one of the young guys to a veteran expected to lead the charge back to the postseason. 6th: SB Nation. Mike Prada on why speculation on whether Kevin Durant will sign with the Washington Wizards in two years — though far, far away and (to some of us, at least) pretty insane — is reasonable within the context of today's NBA news and roster-building cycles. 7th: TrueHoop. Longtime Durant watcher and Daily Thunder proprietor Royce Young won't believe KD's going to take a page out of LeBron's

Marcin Gortat brings us inside his fortress of solitude: 'I look at a white wall and contemplate' [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 30, 2014, 7:28 pm]
After inking a lucrative five-year contract this month to return to the Washington Wizards, you might imagine that the rest of Marcin Gortat's summer would be dominated by rest, relaxation and the sort of high-rolling vacationing that a $60 million deal can provide. By the sounds of things, though, the 30-year-old Polish big man isn't feeling much like jet-setting these days. In a revealing interview with journalist Donata Subbotko in the Polish publication Gazeta Wyborcza (as translated by Bartosz Bielecki for Wizards blog Truth About It), the always candid Gortat said he'd rather just stay close to home after traveling so much during the NBA season, especially after splitting up with his girlfriend of four years ("I don’t feel like flying anywhere just by myself") and finding it difficult to meet someone new due to his preference for ... well, let's let him explain it: [...] I’m a loner. Even when I used to live with my girlfriend I often wanted to be alone. Sometimes I cut myself off from my friends, too. They go together to a club or a restaurant and I stay at home, and I’m not answering any phone calls. What do you do then? Gortat: I look at the wall. I look at a white wall and contemplate. About what? Gortat: About everything. About life, where I am, where I would like to be. I analyze my doings, situations, what would be good for me, and what would not. [...] Does this white wall help you? Gortat: I’m not sitting and rocking in the chair, but I’m reflecting on myself, I’m unloading the unnecessary tension. For instance, when I come back after a game in which I scored 30 points… For some it may seem like I’m a superstar now, but instead, I sit in front of this white wall and bring myself down. I scored today, tomorrow it’s going to be someone else. I’m not that good to become someone else. It is not enough. Every time, I analyze what I did good and what I did wrong. I’ve changed a lot in myself over the past few years. I was a different p

Miami's Dan Le Batard fails in attempt to troll Cleveland Cavaliers fans [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 30, 2014, 7:10 pm]
When LeBron James announced his return to Cleveland, Miami Herald columnist Dan Le Batard concluded his farewell column with a heartfelt "thank you" to the former Heat superstar for his contributions to the glorious sports drama that played out in South Beach over the previous four seasons. Thank you for that, LeBron. All of it. Thank you. A little campy, maybe, but a nice conclusion to what was a rational take on LeBron's departure. It wasn't burning jerseys, and that was a good thing. Graciousness generally comes across better than vitriol. Except, Le Batard has apparently spent the weeks since that column attempting to troll all of Cleveland. The ESPN Radio host pledged to start a Kickstarter campaign to crowd-fund a full-page ad in The Cleveland Plain Dealer and Akron Beacon Journal with the words, "You're Welcome," and "Sincerely, Miami Heat Fans." A mock-up of the advertisement posted on Twitter features a pair of championship rings. I would pay for this.... pic.twitter.com/bnHCguU3G4— BANDWAGON HEAT LIFER (@itsleooo) July 29, 2014 Whether you're holding the door open for a lady or letting someone cut in line, a nice gesture loses its meaning if you feel the need to scream, "You're welcome." Then, you're just a passive-aggressive troll. Thankfully, both the Beacon Journal and Plain Dealer opted not to give Le Batard the satisfaction, each issuing statements rejecting his proposed ad. He'll just have to quietly burn his No. 6 jersey now. On a related note, the Miami Herald reports the Cavaliers and Heat will face each other in Miami for the first time this season on Christmas Day, so Le Batard and LeBron can exchange gifts in person.

Kevin Durant sees Anthony Davis coming: 'He’s an MVP-caliber player ... He’s next in line' [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 30, 2014, 5:45 pm]
When Kevin Durant won the 2013-14 NBA Most Valuable Player award, capturing the Maurice Podoloff Trophy for the first time in his career, it represented not only the greatest individual achievement of a life geared toward basketball excellence, but also the culmination of a five-year journey — beginning with a second-place finish in MVP voting in his breakout 2009-10 campaign — to overtake longtime foil LeBron James as the league's top player. (Even if only in the context of one specific season.) But even as he was being celebrated for his splendid, career-best regular-season performance — and his historic, still-goosebump-inducing acceptance speech — the Oklahoma City Thunder star acknowledged the nature of his changing position within the NBA's firmament. When you get to the top of the mountain, you don't get much of a breather before having to contend with those who are coming up behind you, looking to knock you off. Obviously, that list starts with the man who returned to Ohio after Durant supplanted him, but KD sees another contender gaining on him — and in this particular case, massive freak-of-nature objects in the rear-view mirror may be closer than they appear. From Jim Eichenhofer of Pelicans.com: As reported by SLAM magazine in a recent profile of New Orleans forward Anthony Davis, when Davis texted congratulations to Durant on winning league MVP, Durant responded back to Davis that the 21-year-old is headed for the honor someday. “You on your way to get it,” read Durant’s text message back to Davis. “It was shocking,” Davis said. “For a guy who knows what it takes to win an MVP award, telling me that I’m on my way, it means he sees something in me. That means a lot, especially from one of the best players in the league right now, if not the best. It just meant a lot. It made me want to work even harder.” [...] “I know how good he’s going to be,” the four-time NBA scoring champion said, after a USA Basketball practice. “I

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar says an auction house is holding his awesome stuff hostage [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 30, 2014, 4:39 pm]
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and an L.A. auction house are disputing who owns the rights to some of the Lakers legend's stuff, and one look at the list of memorabilia in question explains why this debate is so heated. The inventory, detailed by TMZ, is essentially an interior decorator's guide to designing a rad office. -- An engraved KAJ tea set-- A McDonald's "Top Faces of Black History" Award-- Signed "Game of Death" poster (the movie he did with Bruce Lee)-- A Stetson black suede hat-- 5 pairs of Lakers sweatpants -- Personalized L.A. Kings jersey-- A "Fletch" script from 1984-- A custom made rocking chair ... and a special Kareem Abdul-Jabbar snowboard  Acquire any one of these assets, and you're instantly the coolest guy in your set of cubicles. Score them all, and you're looking like a young Robert Duvall in your cowboy hat and sweatpants while sipping from a Kareem Abdul-Jabbar teacup and reading Chevy Chase's finest work from a rocking chair. Understandably, Julien's Auction House wants to sell this bonanza of awesome, because any snowboarder worth his salt would up the ante for a Lew Alcindor alpine board. But this memorabilia has sentimental value to Abdul-Jabbar, and that creates a conundrum. After all, Kareem once equated Bruce Lee's influence to John Wooden's, and as cool as a "Game of Death" poster might be on an office wall, it just wouldn't mean as much to anybody but the man who played Hakim. According to TMZ, Kareem contends he entered into an agreement with Julien's Auction House in 2012, but later reneged on a fraction of the 400 items when nostalgia kicked in. However, Julien's believes its victory in an arbitration hearing against Abdul-Jabbar's KAJ Lifetime Retirement Collection LLC gives the Beverly Hills company every right to keep Kareem's stuff. Aren't legal battles grand? Here's hoping someone establishes a Kickstarter in hopes of convincing Chuck Norris to roundhouse his way into the auction house and acquire Abdul-Jabbar's assets by a

The NBA is finally discussing elongating its All-Star break [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 29, 2014, 10:18 pm]
NBA players are pampered. They earn millions of dollars to play a sport, but they also get free transportation to road games, free five-star accommodations on the road, and even meal money. They get summers off, a halftime to rest, free Gatorade at time outs, and all the free bubblegum they can chew. It’s a pretty sweet gig. It’s also a pretty tough gig, especially for the sort of star that is expected to prop up exhibition game attendance in October, cable TV ratings at the All-Star break in February, and play deep into June. And then, possibly, represent your country during the NBA-governed (if we’re honest here) Olympic and international tournaments. That’s a wearying eight and a half months of work if you’re someone like LeBron James, who understandably has shown signs of fatigue late in his most recent playoff runs, after helping his former Miami Heat franchise to four consecutive NBA Finals, with a spot of Olympic play thrown in the middle. James is also asked to be at his gravity-defying best during the All-Star break, he’s routinely criticized for not participating in the Slam Dunk Contest, and you can be damn sure he’ll have to show up at the league-mandated media and charity events during that “break.” The “break,” currently, starts early Friday morning when TNT’s double-header ends, and starts back up with either a practice on the upcoming Monday or shootaround on Tuesday. Though not all players have to make it out to All-Star weekend, and most can afford that first class jet to a sunny location the second the whistle blows on Wednesday or Thursday night, it’s not really much of a “break” at all. The NBA, to help its product and by extension its fans, should pamper these players even more. Luckily for us fans, the league is considering it. From the Miami Sun-Sentinel’s Ira Winderman:   The move, which would give players seven days off between games in mid-February, would result in an increase of one or two back-to-back se

The 10-man rotation, starring how Lionel Hollins' Brooklyn Nets might look [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 29, 2014, 9:23 pm]
A look around the league and the Web that covers it. It's also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren't always listed in order of importance. That's for you, dear reader, to figure out. C: The Brooklyn Game, twice. Ryan Carbain looks at how Lionel Hollins' offensive and defensive systems line up with the personnel he inherits with the Brooklyn Nets, and how things might need to change as Hollins gets comfortable in Barclays Center. PF: Nylon Calculus. Jacob Rosen makes the statistical argument for Kevin Garnett being one of the more transformative offensive players in recent NBA history. SF: The Cauldron. Jim Cavan looks at the lack of interest in Greg Monroe in restricted free agency — similar to the quiet surrounding fellow RFA Eric Bledsoe — and sees a deep and depressing connection with the Detroit Pistons' big man's adopted city: "Like the broken gray Gotham he represents, Greg Monroe’s game was built to last, until somehow it suddenly wasn’t." SG: Bucksketball. The Milwaukee Bucks could have thrown a big-time offer sheet at Bledsoe, but it appears they won't. Should they have, though? Jeremy Schmidt and K.L. Chouinard consider what kind of difference the explosive two-way guard might have made for new head coach Jason Kidd. PG: Sports Illustrated. With Kevin Love trade talk continuing to percolate, Rob Mahoney revisits a handful of recent trades involving superstars to remind us all of the inescapable risk that comes along with engineering the exit of an elite talent. 6th: Upside and Motor. It seems unlikely that Harrison Barnes will ever live up to the "next LeBron James" or "next Kobe Bryant" hype that attended him going out of high school and briefy at North Carolina. But Sam Vecenie wonders: Could he become the next Joe Johnson? 7th: Memphis Commercial Appeal. Chris Herrington's always great Pick-and-Pop column takes a look at which teams in the West are trending up, trending down or standing pat (which, in a conference th

Kyle Korver was traded in 2003 for a copy machine, kind of [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 29, 2014, 8:49 pm]
It’s hard to consider, in an era where the Milwaukee Bucks can be sold for half a billion dollars and the Los Angeles Clippers can fetch a $2 billion asking price even with absolutely no leverage on their side, but we’re not that far removed from NBA teams doing everything they can to pinch every penny. The lackluster world economy in 2003 had quite a bit to do with it, but even a Finals-contending New Jersey Nets team wasn’t above selling draft picks over a decade ago just to pay for a Summer League inclusion and soon-to-be-outmoded office equipment. Former Nets general manager Rod Thorn relayed as much in a Grantland feature fixated on Atlanta Hawks sharpshooter Kyle Korver, who was selected by the Nets just 11 years ago and dealt to Philadelphia so that the Nets’ front office could tidy up their finances. From Zach Lowe’s report: With none of their preferred choices on the board, the Nets brass selected Creighton forward Kyle Korver with the 51st pick — and immediately sold his draft rights to the Sixers for $125,000. That covered summer league. With the leftover cash, the Nets bought a new copy machine. The Nets were past the era of the Secaucus Seven counting every bit of scratch, but even following two straight Finals runs the recently-deceased former owner Lewis Katz still didn’t want to bother with Korver in the face of six figurers’ worth of cash. With Paccelis Morlende and Remon Van de Hare sandwiching Korver with the 50th and 52nd picks, it’s understandable that the Nets thought Korver expendable. Even if, bloody hell, he would have been fantastic next to Jason Kidd on the Nets. As Lowe points out, Korver blossomed in Philadelphia, initially finding success alongside Allen Iverson by making himself available for the easy pass in transition. Korver’s career also straddled the line between the modern NBA, and the thankfully-passed days of yore when Larry Brown and Doug Collins-types talked up 18-footers like they were worth 10 points

Steve Nash: 'I think this is my last season' [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 29, 2014, 8:05 pm]
Nobody knows how Steve Nash’s body will respond to the 2014-15 NBA season. We’re not even sure if Steve Nash will be around for the 2014-15 NBA season, because though the move would be unlikely, the Los Angeles Lakers could waive Nash by using the stretch provision, and in reaction he may choose to retire rather than move onto another team. Nash has hinted at as much in the past, and on Monday he also dropped hints that the 2014-15 NBA season could be his last in the league. That’s a bit of an open secret, but it’s still a little strange and sad to hear. Mark Medina of Inside Socal reported this aside captured by Sport TV: In case you can’t play the video at work, here’s the pull quote: “I think this is my last season,” said the 40-year-old Nash in a video posted by Sport TV. But I still love to play, practice and work on my game. I’m going to spend hopefully many many years living this life without basketball. It’ll be nice to play one more year.” Now, that’s not exactly a confirmation, but it is close. The distinction, though, is that Nash himself probably doesn’t know if this is his last season. It would appear that the final year of his $9.7 million contract, working in his adopted hometown of Los Angeles would wrap things up in a tidy bow, but the two-time MVP is still rightfully leaving his options open. Steve has missed 99 games over the last two seasons, as a leg fracture suffered early in 2012-13 led to back, neck and nerve pain. A Grantland documentary profiled Nash’s attempts to return to action for an injury-laden Lakers team last season, but Nash was only able to play in spurts, unable to provide even an approximation of the dominant play that marked his turns in Dallas and Phoenix. It was rumored that the Lakers would utilize that stretch provision in order to clear immediate cap space during this offseason, knocking around $6.5 million off of the Los Angeles payroll in an attempt to lure a free agent star. Those attempts

LeBron James removes shorts, throws them into crowd in Taiwan (Video) [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 29, 2014, 7:26 pm]
When LeBron James announced his return to Cleveland earlier this month, the NBA world saw a stripped-down version of the four-time MVP — an NBA superstar humbled by one horrible Decision. LeBron also treated his Taiwanese fans to a new stripped-down side of himself, only this time he took it quite literally. In a video taken during his recent publicity tour across Asia — uncovered by Pro Basketball Talk — a shirtless James can be seen removing his hat, shoes and shorts as a man screams "everybody witness" in front of a large crowd. We finally have our answer to the age-old boxers or briefs question: boxer briefs.  Perhaps this is a precursor to a new Be Like Magic Mike advertising campaign. And scene. Speaking of scenes, James appears to be Stateside again, posting a picture with Saturday Night Live alum Bill Hader on his Instagram account. The two will co-star in "Trainwreck," a Judd Apatow project that began filming in New York City last month. Cue Stefon describing this recent scene in Taiwan. If his Asian tour was any indication, the 30,000 fans who purchased tickets to the Welcome Home LeBron Community Rally in Akron on Aug. 8 ought to be in for a surprise. Used socks for everyone.

Charles Barkley offers to pay for funerals of 3 children killed in alleged Philadelphia carjacking [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 29, 2014, 5:13 pm]
Former Philadelphia 76ers great and TNT NBA commentator Charles Barkley has offered to pay for the funerals of three children killed in an automobile accident following an alleged sexual assault and carjacking in North Philadelphia last week. The children — Keiearra Williams, 15; Thomas Joseph Reed, 10; and Terrence Moore, 7 — were struck and killed on the morning of July 25 by a Toyota 4Runner that "lurched out of control and into a family selling fruit at Allegheny and Germantown Avenues," according to Aubrey Whelan and Mike Newall of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Their mother, Keisha Williams, 34, was also injured, and remained hospitalized in critical condition as of Monday night. The car belonged to a female real estate agent (whom multiple media outlets have declined to identify, citing the sensitive nature of the crime) who had allegedly been "carjacked [and] forced to perform oral sex on [two] men after they forced their way into her car," taking $3,000 from the woman in the process. Shortly thereafter, "the car went out of control, blew a tire, and careened into Williams and her children, who had been selling fruit to raise money for a neighborhood playground, police said." The real estate agent, 45, suffered broken ribs, cuts and bruises in the crash, and remained hospitalized in stable condition on Monday, while another woman who had been working with Williams and her family at the church-run fruit stand — 69-year-old Thelma Brown — remained hospitalized after suffering a broken ankle and bruised sternum. After a weekend of searching for the two suspects, Philadelphia law enforcement officials announced Monday that "the city has charged Jonathan Rosa, 19, and Cornelius Crawford, 23, each with three counts of second-degree murder and additional counts of robbery, sexual assault, kidnapping, and carjacking," and will seek "mandatory life sentences" against both of them, according to Victor Fiorillo of Philadelphia magazine. U.S. Marshals and homicide

Charles Barkley offers to pay for funerals of three children killed in alleged Philadelphia carjacking [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 29, 2014, 5:13 pm]
Former Philadelphia 76ers great and TNT NBA commentator Charles Barkley has offered to pay for the funerals of three children killed in an automobile accident following an alleged sexual assault and carjacking in North Philadelphia last week. The children — Keiearra Williams, 15; Thomas Joseph Reed, 10; and Terrence Moore, 7 — were struck and killed on the morning of July 25 by a Toyota 4Runner that "lurched out of control and into a family selling fruit at Allegheny and Germantown Avenues," according to Aubrey Whelan and Mike Newall of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Their mother, Keisha Williams, 34, was also injured, and remained hospitalized in critical condition as of Monday night. The car belonged to a female real estate agent (whom multiple media outlets have declined to identify, citing the sensitive nature of the crime) who had allegedly been "carjacked [and] forced to perform oral sex on [two] men after they forced their way into her car," taking $3,000 from the woman in the process. Shortly thereafter, "the car went out of control, blew a tire, and careened into Williams and her children, who had been selling fruit to raise money for a neighborhood playground, police said." The real estate agent, 45, suffered broken ribs, cuts and bruises in the crash, and remained hospitalized in stable condition on Monday, while another woman — 69-year-old Thelma Brown — who had been working with Williams and her family at the church-run fruit stand remained hospitalized after suffering a broken ankle and bruised sternum. After a weekend of searching for the two suspects, Philadelphia law enforcement officials announced Monday that "the city has charged Jonathan Rosa, 19, and Cornelius Crawford, 23, each with three counts of second-degree murder and additional counts of robbery, sexual assault, kidnapping, and carjacking," and will seek "mandatory life sentences" against both of them, according to Victor Fiorillo of Philadelphia magazine. U.S. Marshals and homicide

Report: Suns forward P.J. Tucker arrested for 'super extreme DUI,' could face 45 days in jail [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 29, 2014, 3:54 pm]
Three weeks after finishing the 2013-14 NBA regular season, and two months before he got a new three-year, $16.5 million contract, Phoenix Suns forward P.J. Tucker was arrested by Scottsdale, Ariz., police for "super extreme DUI," according to Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic. The legal blood alcohol content limit is .08. A driving-under-the-influence violation is considered "super extreme" in Arizona if the violator's blood alcohol level tops .20. (There's an intermediate crime — "extreme DUI" — for offenders whose blood alcohol level falls between .15 and .20.) Coro reported Monday night that Tucker blew a .201 "on a preliminary breath test in the field on May 10, according to Scottsdale police," and that analysis of a blood test administered after Tucker was arrested and taken to jail "showed his blood alcohol-content to be .222, according to the police report." That, obviously, is a remarkably high number, and according to the police reports, Tucker's appearance and behavior seemed consistent with that: A Scottsdale police officer reported spotting Tucker, 29, driving his 2011 Mercedes-Benz slowly through a stop sign at North Buckboard Trail and East Camelback Road, near a popular downtown Scottsdale nightlife area. According to the report, the vehicle ran that stop sign northbound at about 12:30 a.m., turned wide left into the right lane on westbound Camelback and turned wide again while straddling two lanes on northbound Scottsdale Road before the officer pulled the vehicle over. Tucker had "thick and slurred" speech and "watery and bloodshot" eyes, according to the report, and the officer detected a "powerful" alcohol odor as he interviewed Tucker. Tucker told the officer that he was coming from the W Scottsdale Hotel, where he had one beer. During a walk-and-turn test, Tucker stumbled to the side and caught himself on a construction fence, the report stated. Coro reports that the Suns "were aware of the charges before signing Tucker to his deal," adding

Report: Blake Griffin pulled out of Team USA due to back fracture, expected to make 'full recovery' [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 29, 2014, 2:43 pm]
Blake Griffin chalked up his decision to bow out of competition for a spot on the U.S. men's national basketball team that will compete in the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup in Spain next month to a desire "to focus and dedicate 100 percent of my energy on improving and preparing for the upcoming season with the [Los Angeles] Clippers." As it turns out, though, there's another reason why the All-NBA Second Team forward pulled out. According to ESPN.com's Ramona Shelburne, Griffin has a small fracture in his back and "was advised by doctors to give [it] more time to heal before the start of the next NBA season." This marks the second straight time that an injury has knocked Griffin out of a major international tournament; he tore the meniscus in his left knee after stepping on the foot of Washington Wizards point guard John Wall during workouts prior to the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. More from Shelburne: Griffin is expected to make a full recovery from the injury, which sources say was suffered during the playoffs. However, doctors advised him to sit out international competition this summer for precautionary reasons. Griffin has continued to work out this summer in Los Angeles with teammate DeAndre Jordan and former Laker and Clipper Sasha Vujacic. That's not all Griffin has done this summer, though, as noted by the eagle-eyed Tom Ziller of SB Nation: [...] if Blake is telling the truth that he was hurt in the playoffs and didn't tell the team — why is he backflipping into the sea a month later? Furthermore, why did Griffin's camp deny there was any injury when announcing his withdrawal from Team USA three days ago? Reasonable questions, no? (I wouldn't advise holding your breath until you get an answer from Griffin or his representatives.) For his part, Team USA coach Mike Krzyzewski told Yahoo Sports NBA columnist Marc J. Spears that he's learned to take late-in-the-game departures like those turned in by Griffin and on-the-trade-block power forward Kevin

A California judge rules in Shelly Sterling's favor, clearing the way for the sale of the Los Angeles Clippers [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 28, 2014, 10:33 pm]
Los Angeles Clipper owner Donald Sterling’s wife acted in good faith when she encouraged him to meet with two neurologists to determine if he was suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, judge Michael Levanas ruled on Monday, and her proposed sale of the Clippers in the wake of Sterling’s racist taped comments was not hatched as a result of a conspiratorial plot. Donald Sterling, who is suing the Sterling family trust (and, by slim extension, himself) lost in a court ruling that should encourage the agreed-upon sale of the Clippers to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer for $2 billion. Donald Sterling did not acquit himself well in these court hearings, despite his law degree and significant history in both defending himself and living a rather litigious lifestyle. He failed to show up for the first day of court, and then gave a rambling and combative testimony after being called to the stand. Off the testimonial record, he was observed by the court and judge in calling Shelly Sterling a “pig,” just one day after testifying about how much he loved the estranged wife that he openly flaunted cheating on. One of Sterling’s paramours, V. Stiviano, taped Sterling telling her that he didn’t want her bringing African-Americans to Clipper games, nor being pictured on social media with African-American men, despite the fact that Stiviano herself is of mixed race. Extended versions of the illegally-recorded tapes documented Sterling’s clear plantation mentality in regards to his team and players, and Sterling did himself no favors in a historically bad interview given to CNN’s Anderson Cooper that he arranged to tell his side of the story. It was that interview that convinced Shelly Sterling that her husband of nearly 60 years that he was suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s. This concern coupled with Donald Sterling’s acquiesce to his wife, encouraging her to sell the Clippers after he had been banned from the NBA for his comments. Though he lat

Well, here is a picture of James Harden made out of real hair (Photo) [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 28, 2014, 10:01 pm]
When I interviewed Filip Peraić, the Croatian artist behind James Harden Illustrated, about four months ago, he explained that what he found so enriching about pursuing artistic freedom within the confines of the Houston Rockets All-Star's side profile was finding wholly new ways to recreate a familiar motif. "Creativity is best noticed when there are constraints," he told me. "[...] I’m trying to create unexpected connections and that’s why people find this project interesting. Obvious is what I want to avoid." Well, Filip, I think you've done a pretty good job of avoiding obvious with the most recent installment of James Harden Illustrated: If you missed it: James Harden made from real hair! http://t.co/SqZqY9T1gq / pic.twitter.com/N3b8Rj6wsr— Filip Peraić (@filiperaic) July 28, 2014 Yep — "James Harden made from real hair." Again, if the goal of James Harden Illustrated is to "portray Harden in a way that neither you nor I expected" ... I mean, mission accomplished. Peraić told me Monday that there wasn't any particular grand motivator for using hair; rather, he was just "experimenting with mediums," as he did when using flowers to recreate Harden's likeness. Except, in this case, securing the raw materials wasn't quite as lovely as taking a walk through the garden. "For this portrait, I had to enter the creep zone and ask [the] barber for some hair leftovers," he wrote. Just as long as you didn't enter the "weirdo" zone. I don't think your muse would enjoy that. You're going to have to talk to your local barber if you'd like to replicate Peraić's work, but if you want to give your home or office a "creep zone" upgrade without physical clumbs of hair, you can cop a print of the work at Peraić's online store. I think Harden kind of likes that idea: - - - - - - - Dan Devine is an editor for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at devine@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @YourManDevine Stay connected with Ball Don't Lie

Bulls' Joakim Noah, Derrick Rose urge Chicago residents to 'stand up' in anti-violence PSA (Video) [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 28, 2014, 9:12 pm]
That's the first in a series of 60-second public service announcements produced by Joakim Noah's charitable organization imploring Chicago residents to come together and stem the rising tide of violence that has swept away dozens of lives this summer. The Chicago Bulls center introduced the "Chicago, Stand Up" campaign at a youth-focused event at a community center in the city's Near West Side section held Friday, the day before his Noah's Arc Foundation hosted a basketball tournament for 18- to 24-year-old men from different parts of Chicago aimed at emphasizing messages of peace, unity, competition and togetherness. (The Friday event also included Noah playfully swatting young fans' shots, as befits his status as the NBA's reigning Defensive Player of the Year.) "This Peace Tournament at the United Center is very, very special to me," Noah said, according to Blake Schuster of the Chicago Tribune. "Sports are something that unites people. To be able to do that where we play and compete every day is special." While the tournament was a one-day event, the PSAs — which are narrated by rapper/actor Common and feature Noah alongside his Bulls teammate Derrick Rose, young people from the city and a variety of community activists — will continue to air. Noah hoping that with enough passionate repetition and substantive action, the message — to turn away from violence and retribution, and to turn toward more positive pursuits, whether they be athletic, artistic, professional or otherwise — will be heard. “The summer months bring a lot of violence, and we felt it was urgent to get this PSA out now in order to bring some hope, change and support to the community,” Noah said, according to Maudlyne Ihejirika of the Chicago Sun-Times. More tangible efforts will be needed to quell the violence that has resulted in 222 homicides in the city in 2014 thus far, according to RedEye Chicago. Getting your arms around a problem so daunting, so pervasive, isn't easy, but Noa

Eric Bledsoe: 'I can understand the Phoenix Suns are using restricted free agency against me' [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 28, 2014, 8:17 pm]
Eric Bledsoe got to play starter's minutes last season for the first time after a summertime trade from the Los Angeles Clippers to the Phoenix Suns, and he quickly proved deserving of the opportunity. The tough, explosive guard was one of just six players to average at least 17.5 points, 5.5 assists and 4.5 rebounds per game last season; the other five were the league's MVP (Kevin Durant) and runner-up (LeBron James), two perennial All-Stars (James Harden and Russell Westbrook) and arguably the best guard in the Eastern Conference last year (Kyle Lowry). He was a two-way menace who paired with Goran Dragic to give first-year coach Jeff Hornacek one of the league's best backcourts, a hard-charging duo that helped propel the Suns from basement dwellers to the brink of a playoff berth in a brutal Western Conference. Bledsoe's breakout campaign was limited to just 43 games and 1,416 minutes by January surgery to remove a piece of the meniscus in his right knee. But despite the worrying nature of a second meniscus surgery in 27 months, the Kentucky product looked just as quick, strong and productive after returning from the procedure, and looked to be in line for a big-time payday as he entered free agency this summer. As we near August, though, a full four weeks after the NBA's annual free-agent frenzy began, that payday has yet to come. Multiple reports indicate that Phoenix has offered a four-year contract worth $48 million, the same deal that Lowry got, while Bledsoe and agent Rich Paul want a five-year max offer that could top $80 million. The bad news for Bledsoe is that there doesn't appear to be any reason for the Suns to get into his preferred price range; all's quiet on the Bledsoe front, because the 24-year-old is a restricted free agent, governed by a different set of rules than those players who hit the market free and clear. Bledsoe gets why things are taking so long ... but that doesn't mean he likes it. From Kyle Burger of WVTM-TV in Bledsoe's hometown

Paul George lists the firing of an ex-coach as one of his top memories as a rookie [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: July 28, 2014, 8:16 pm]
On Saturday, stuck in the middle of the NBA’s slow season, Indiana Pacers All-Star Paul George was clearly yearning: Missing fishing right now— Paul George (@Paul_George24) July 26, 2014 Looking to fill that void, George opened up to his nearly 700,000 followers on Twitter, mentioning that he’d take ten questions from random fans. The list of Qs and eventual As were the typical fare, citing George’s favorite movie (‘Saving Private Ryan’), NBA heroes from his youth (Kobe, Tracy McGrady, Anfernee Hardaway), his favorite non-Indianapolis arenas to play in (Madison Square Garden, the Staples Center), while doing sound work in mentioning “Sofia Vergara and Alex Morgan” as his favorite celebrity crushes. Then he reeled in this big’un: Firing Obrien and starting in playoffs RT @ballsohardmj: @Paul_George24 Best memory as a rook?— Paul George (@Paul_George24) July 26, 2014 “Obrien,” in this instance, refers to former Indiana coach Jim O’Brien, who was let go partway through the 2010-11 season. Assistant coach Frank Vogel took over after Obie’s 17-27 start, and helped lead the young Pacers to the playoffs with a 20-18 turn. The team would eventually fall to the top ranked Chicago Bulls in the first round, but not before putting the Bulls through their, pardon the phrase, paces, establishing a defensive identity that has led to Indiana’s current ranking amongst the championship contenders. George would start for the second half of Vogel’s 38-game run, and Indiana went 10-9 with the rookie in the lineup alongside All-Star swingman Danny Granger. The move to send veteran Mike Dunleavy Jr. to the bench cost the Pacers in terms of spacing, but it also helped spring out a devastating defensive perimeter rotation, and accelerate George’s growth as a player. When Granger went down for the bulk of the 2012-13 with a knee injury, the young triptych of George, Roy Hibbert, and Vogel helped take the Pacers all the way to the seventh game of the Eastern





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