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Mavericks’ Dirk Nowitzki suffers torn finger tendon

06.01.11 at 12:26 pm ET
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For the Mavericks, the 2011 NBA finals have not gone according to plan. In addition to shooting a postseason-worst 37.3 percent in Tuesday night’s eight-point loss to the Heat, star forward Dirk Nowitzki tore a tendon in the middle finger of his non-shooting hand.

The injury occurred when Nowitzki tried to steal the ball from Chris Bosh in the final minutes of Game 1. After the play, Nowitzki said, “I couldn’t straighten out my finger anymore.”

The forward will probably have to wear a splint for the rest of the series but plans on playing in Game 2 on Thursday.

Nowitzki had 27 points on 7-of-18 shooting Tuesday night.

Read More: Chris Bosh, Dirk Nowitzki, NBA Finals, Rumor Mill

Who’s the best in NBA history? Hall of Famers disagree

06.01.11 at 11:55 am ET
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Several days after NBA great Scottie Pippen proclaimed LeBron James as possibly the best player in league history, two of Pippen’s fellow Hall of Famers publicly disagreed.

On Tuesday night, NBA career points leader Kareem Abdul-Jabbar wrote on his website, kareemabduljabbar.com, “I have nothing but respect for [Pippen], but you are way off in your assessment of who is the greatest player of all time. Your comments are off because of your limited perspective.”

Abdul-Jabbar cited Michael Jordan, Wilt Chamberlain and Bill Russell as better players than James.

Fomer Pistons legend Isiah Thomas echoed Abdul-Jabbar’s opinion Tuesday on the “Steven A. Smith Show.”

“I think LeBron has a chance to eclipse Jordan if he continues to improve his game,” Thomas said. “But where they are right now, you still have to take Jordan as being the better player.”

You can read Abdul-Jabbar’s full “Open Letter to Scottie Pippen” here.

Read More: Isiah Thomas, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, LeBron James, Michael Jordan

Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Trio of Yankees top player poll of most overrated major leaguers

06.01.11 at 7:23 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

WHAT’S HAPPENING LOCALLY WEDNESDAY:
NHL Playoffs: Bruins at Canucks, 8 p.m. (NBC)
MLB: White Sox at Red Sox, 1:35 p.m. (NESN; WEEI)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ Sports Illustrated polled 185 major leaguers to determined the most overrated players in baseball. Three Yankees topped the list: Alex Rodriguez (18 percent), Joba Chamberlain (12) and Derek Jeter (7). Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon received 4 percent.

“I’ve been on this list before. I think it will be like that for the rest of my career,” Rodriguez told the New York Daily News Tuesday. Asked if he was one of the players who was polled, A-Rod said: “I have so much respect for anyone that wears a major league uniform, I would never answer that.”

Jeter brushed off a question about the poll, but Chamberlain joked that he was “disappointed that I’m not No. 1.” Said the reliever: “My bills are still paid and I still have a job. I could care less as long as I’m still getting outs and doing the things I need to do.”

‘™¦ Two politicians (who are brothers) in Toronto are talking about landing an NFL team for the Canadian city. There has been some speculation that the Jaguars might be moved from Jacksonville after struggling with attendance the past few years. “We’re pretty confident,” said city councilor Doug Ford, brother of mayor Rob Ford. “How can the NFL keep ignoring one of the largest markets in North America? You can’t.”

‘™¦ New Lakers coach Mike Brown is doing his best to make sure he does not offend Kobe Bryant. During his introductory press conference Tuesday, Brown said of the superstar guard: “This is still his team. We’ll make sure that he’ll have the ball in the sweet spots that he likes. He has a great understanding of my vision and he’s on board.” In The Orange County Register, Jeff Miller writes about the challenge Brown faces in following a legend in Phil Jackson.

‘™¦ The Thrashers are set to move from Atlanta to Winnipeg, with the deal announced as official Tuesday. The Globe and Mail writes about Mark Chipman, the man behind the deal to return the NHL to Winnipeg.

‘™¦ The New York Times profiles ESPN columnist Bill Simmons and discusses his new venture, a website called Grantland.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On June 1, 1971, which Red Sox player broke an 0-for-44 slump with a hit against the Royals?

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: alex rodriguez, Derek Jeter, joba chamberlain, Jonathan Papelbon

NCAA investigates Terelle Pryor’s cars in Ohio State probe

05.31.11 at 6:26 pm ET
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As the NCAA continues to investigate the corruption within Jim Tressel‘s Ohio State football program, the organization has turned its attention to quarterback Terrelle Pryor and his succession of used cars.

NCAA officials have now begun investigating Aaron Kniffin, who sold a series of expensive cars to the Buckeyes quarterback. In a statement released by Ohio State on Tuesday, Kniffin denied any allegations of improper benefits or special discounts, saying, “The deals that I did for Ohio State student-athletes were no different than any of the other 10,000-plus deals that I’ve done for all my customers.”

Tressel was forced to resign for on Monday.

Read More: Aaron Kniffin, Jim Tressel, Ohio State Football, Rumor Mill

LeBron James on Jim Tressel: ‘He’s done some great things’

05.31.11 at 6:22 pm ET
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Although LeBron James was preparing for the NBA finals at Tuesday afternoon’s shootaround, he found time to share his thoughts on former Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel. The coach ended his 10-year reign amidst accusations of improper player benefits, but the Heat superstar and Ohio native is still sticking behind him.

“He’s done some great things for that university. It’s unfortunate all the allegations and things that have come out in the past year,” James said. “Everyone in Columbus and Ohio knows how important, how great he was for the team and university.”

Read More: Jim Tressel, LeBron James, Ohio State, Rumor Mill

First look at NL All-Star voting shows close race

05.31.11 at 6:20 pm ET
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The 2011 MLB All-Star Game is still a couple of months away, but the National League roster is slowly starting to take shape.

In the early voting results released Tuesday, Albert Pujols is the lead vote-getter with 988,784 followed closely by the Rockies’ Troy Tulowitzki (975,777), the Brewers’ Ryan Braun (971,809), and the Cardinals’ Matt Holiday (927,778).

If the voting ended today, the NL would have the GiantsBuster Posey at catcher, Pujols at first, the Reds’ Brandon Phillips at second, Tulowitzki at shortstop, the Phillies’ Placido Polanco at third, and Braun, Holliday, and the Cardinals’ Lance Berkman in the outfield.

The voting will continue until June 30 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

Read More: Albert Pujols, Matt Holiday, MLB All-Star Game, Rumor Mill

Albert Haynesworth road rage case dismissed

05.31.11 at 6:18 pm ET
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The road-rage assault charge against Redskins defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth was dismissed on Tuesday after the 10-year pro reached a settlement with the alleged victim, who accused Haynesworth of punching him over a traffic dispute.

The victim told police he made a gesture at the 335-pound Haynesworth for tailgating. The two men pulled over, and Haynesworth allegedly got out of his pickup truck and attacked the other driver.

According to Haynesworth’s lawyer, “[His] mistake was he got out of his car, and most judges don’t like that.”

Read More: Albert Haynesworth, Rumor Mill,

Ball boy runs on court during French Open rally

05.31.11 at 4:46 pm ET
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Viktor Troicki nearly upset fourth-seeded Andy Murray in the French Open quarterfinals Tuesday, but he certainly didn’t get any help from the ball boy. In the fifth set, Troicki’s overhand smash sent Murray scrambling to his right, and Murray barely managed return the shot. Apparently thinking the point was over, a 12-year-old ball boy ran onto the court, within inches of Troicki as he blasted another shot past Murray.

Despite Troicki’s would-be winner, the point had to be replayed because of the youngster’s interference. Troiki went on to lose the point and the match (4-6, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 7-5).

“I haven’€™t ever seen it on TV. Not since I’€™ve been watching and playing tennis have I ever seen such a situation,” Troicki said. “The kid just jumped in and messed up my point. I can’€™t blame him but still, I was a little bit disappointed.”

Here’s video of the point:

Read More: Andy Murray, French Open, Rumor Mill, Viktor Troicki

Carolina Panthers start informal workouts

05.31.11 at 4:45 pm ET
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Panthers offensive lineman Geoff Schwartz tweeted Tuesday that over 50 members of the Panthers attended the team’s first player-run workout since the start of the NFL lockout. The team reportedly hired a police officer to keep reporters away from the practice facility.

Read More: Carolina Panthers, Geoff Schwartz, Rumor Mill,

Thrashers officially heading up to Winnipeg

05.31.11 at 1:09 pm ET
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After weeks of rumors about the potential move, the news was finally confirmed in a Tuesday press conference. The Thrashers have been sold to the True North Sports and Entertainment group and will be relocated from Atlanta to Winnipeg, Manitoba. The deal was reportedly worth $170 million and includes a relocation fee.

The city had a hockey team, the Winnipeg Jets, from 1980-1996 before that team was relocated to Phoenix and renamed the Coyotes. The Thrashers were in Atlanta since the league created an expansion franchise there back in 2000.

The new ownership group said a new name for the franchise had yet to be chosen, although the Jets are still considered to be the favorite. The deal must still be approved by the NHL board of governors, although if NHL commissioner Gary Bettman‘s inclusion in Tuesday’s press conference was any indication, that won’t be a problem.

Read More: Atlanta Thrashers, Rumor Mill, Winnipeg,