College Blog
WEEI.com Blog Network

Thinking Out Loud: Celtics draft pick Ben Bentil should have stayed at Providence another year

06.24.16 at 5:50 pm ET
By   |   Comments

Rooke_JohnThinking out loud … while wondering whatever happened to Sam Bowie.

— Kris Dunn’s night in the NBA draft spotlight very nearly had a local lean to it, except for Danny Ainge’s crazy idea that Jaylen Brown might actually be a serviceable player right away. More on that in a sec — but for Dunn, it was the culmination of what could best be described as a beautiful struggle.

— If you know Dunn’s story (and if you don’t, Google it), you know this is a fairy tale ending. Or beginning. Minnesota has a piece now that could turn a 29-53 Timberwolves team into a playoff contender. From the PC point of view, Dunn is the first first-rounder selected since Marshon Brooks in 2011 (25th to Boston), and the highest pick (at No. 5 overall) since Marvin Barnes was taken at No. 2 in 1974. He’s also the fourth Friar all-time to be selected in the top five of the draft (Barnes, Jimmy Walker, Ernie DiGregorio), and also the 11th all-time to be taken in the first round.

— The last NBA draft top-10 pick for Providence? Otis Thorpe at No. 9 (by Kansas City, now Sacramento) in 1984. Forty-three Friars have been NBA draft picks, all-time.

— Andrew Wiggins. Karl Anthony Townes. The last two NBA Rookies of the Year reside in T-wolves Land. Good company for Dunn. Ricky Rubio. Zach LaVine. Highlight reel alley-oops are on the revamped dinner menu.

— One other note worth mentioning here — Dunn may be the first person in recorded history to put J.C. Penney and Gucci in the same sentence. Dunn already has a sponsorship deal with J.C. Penney for clothing, as his draft night suit was created by the clothing store giant. His Gucci shoes were glittering to the point he was asked about them by ESPN’s Lisa Salters.

— Tallying the draft score college conference-wise, the Big East had four players drafted in the two rounds (Marquette’s Henry Ellenson No. 18 to Detroit, Seton Hall’s Isaiah Whitehead No. 42 to Utah, then traded to Brooklyn), including PC’s Dunn and Ben Bentil.

— If you’re keeping score at home, the Big Ten, SEC, Big 12 and Pac-12 each had six picks, while the ACC led the way with nine players selected. Only one other league had multiple picks (the WCC, with two) and 12 conferences were represented overall, including the Atlantic-10 (St. Joseph’s DeAndre Bembry, 21st to Atlanta) and the American (UConn’s Daniel Hamilton 56th to Oklahoma City).

— Bentil’s wait until the second round and the 51st pick overall was not a surprise in these eyes. Great that Boston selected him, and he’ll get the chance to compete for a Celtics roster spot. Dunn and Bentil now make it 10 times PC has had multiple NBA draft picks in the same year.

— But anyone who really believes Bentil made the right “basketball” move by leaving Providence early is wrong.

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Ben Bentil, Kris Dunn,

Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Warriors reportedly plan aggressive push to sign Kevin Durant

06.22.16 at 7:26 am ET
By   |   Comments

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.

WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: White Sox at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Royals at Mets 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Brewers at Athletics, 3:35 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Giants at Pirates, 7 p.m. (MLB Network)
College baseball: World Series, UC Santa Barbara vs. Arizona, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
NHL: Awards show, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)
WNBA: Liberty at Dream, noon (NBA TV)
Soccer: Copa America semifinals, Colombia vs. Chile, 8 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: European Championship: Hungary vs. Portugal, 11:30 a.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship: Iceland vs. Austria, 11:30 a.m. (ESPN2)
Soccer: European Championship: Italy vs. Ireland, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship: Sweden vs. Belgium, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant

— It’s quickly becoming a very interesting offseason in the NBA, and not just for the Celtics, who reportedly continue to look to make a deal involving the No. 3 pick in Thursday’s draft but are having no luck.

According to an ESPN report, the Warriors — fresh off their loss in Game 7 of the NBA Finals — will aggressively pursue Kevin Durant when free agency begins July 1.

While Boston would seem an unlikely landing spot for the former league MVP, Golden State would be more enticing for obvious reasons. And while the most likely scenario for Durant to maximize his options financially is for him to re-sign with Oklahoma City but become a free agent again in another year or two, Warriors owner Joe Lacob hinted Sunday night, “I will be very aggressive” in free agency.

For his part, Durant played down the financial aspect of his pending decision, saying Monday, “It’s a little bit complicated right now,” and it’s more about basketball than money or fame.

“That’s what it is for me,” he said. “It’s a basketball decision.”

If Durant should sign with the Warriors — and even if he doesn’t — there could be a shakeup for the Warriors, who have eight pending free agents. Forward Harrison Barnes and center Festus Ezeli are the most likely to draw interest, especially from a team like the Celtics that could use a dramatic improvement in its frontcourt.

Meanwhile, Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki reportedly opted out of his contract and will become an unrestricted free agent July 1. And teammate Chandler Parsons is expected to do the same.

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Chandler Parsons, Dirk Nowitzki, Joseph Randle, Kevin Durant

U.S. soccer falls to Argentina, Lionel Messi in Copa America semifinals

06.21.16 at 11:30 pm ET
By   |   Comments

Lionel Messi scored a beautiful free-kick goal in the 32nd minute. (Kevin Jairaj/USA Today Sports)

Lionel Messi scored a beautiful free-kick goal in the 32nd minute. (Kevin Jairaj/USA Today Sports)

The U.S. men’s soccer team will play in the Copa America Centenario third-place game, as it lost 4-0 against Argentina in a sold-out NRG Stadium in Houston.

Despite the physical play from the U.S. defense, the Argentinian attack, led by Lionel Messi, peppered 10 shots at netminder Brad Guzan. The Americans meanwhile failed to register a shot on goal, and were smothered on all sides of the pitch by the No. 1-ranked team in the FIFA world rankings.

The USMNT’s night started off with an omen for the rest of the game. Three minutes into the contest, Ezequiel Lavezzi produced a give-and-go with Messi near the top of the box after dribbling out a short corner kick. Messi chipped the ball toward the net, where a streaking Lavezzi was able to head it in and put Argentina up 1-0.

Messi would later get a goal of his own in the 32nd minute, and it was one that broke his country’s international goal record. After being fouled on the edge of the penalty area, Messi was placed just outside the box on a free kick. With Messi curling it to the right and around a four-man wall, the ball found the top right corner of the net. It was the 55th international goal for the 28-year-old legend.

After halftime, Gonzalo Higuain darted past John Brooks, collected his own rebounded shot off of Guzan, and called the game at the 50th minute by putting it into the back of the net. For good measure, Messi connected with Higuain in the 86th minute to make it 4-0, where the American defense was nowhere to be found in the waning minutes of the game.

Highlighted by also having two-thirds of possession throughout the entire game, the Argentinian national team proved through complete domination that it is ready to win its first Copa America title since 1993. All was not positive though, as Lavezzi injured himself as he went to head a ball near the side barrier. Tumbling over the barrier, Lavezzi was carried off and as of writing, there is no update of whether he will play in Argentina’s championship match.

While this was anything but a graceful exit for the USMNT, it still left a positive mark on the state of U.S. soccer at Copa America Centenario. The team was the only North American side to make it to the semifinals, and faced arguably the toughest side in the tournament. The Americans were still out-classed by the South American side in every aspect of the game, but still have one more match to prove their worth in the world’s game.

This match also gave Christian Pulisic, a promising 17-year-old, a full second half of play against a world-class international side, which is positive for his already rapid growth and development. He showed some quality midfield play in his limited time, causing some havoc for the Argentine defense, but not enough to warrant any solid chances.

Argentina will face the winner of the Chile-Colombia match, while the Americans will take on the loser of that fixture on Saturday at 8 p.m. in Glendale, Arizona.

Read More: copa america, lionel messi, usa soccer,

Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: LeBron James lashes out at critics after being welcomed home to Cleveland as champion

06.21.16 at 7:46 am ET
By   |   Comments

Welcome to Tuesday’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.

TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: White Sox at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Cardinals at Cubs, 8 p.m. (MLB Network)
College baseball: World Series, Texas Tech vs. Florida, 5 p.m. (ESPN2)
College baseball: World Series, TCU vs. Coastal Carolina, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
WNBA: Lynx at Sparks, 3:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
WNBA: Mercury at Wings, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
Soccer: Copa America semifinals, United States vs. Argentina, 9 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: European Championship, Northern Ireland vs. Germany, 11:30 a.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship, Ukraine vs. Poland, 11:30 a.m. (ESPN2)
Soccer: European Championship, Croatia vs. Spain, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship, Czech Republic vs. Turkey, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

LeBron James

LeBron James

— LeBron James was welcomed back to Cleveland with his Cavaliers teammates Monday after they ended the city’s 52-year championship drought with an NBA title. After arriving home, James took a shot at critics who said he would not be able to seal the deal.

James, the NBA Finals MVP after his triple double in Sunday’s Game 7, posted an image on Instagram of him holding the Larry O’Brien trophy with the note:

They said u lost a step, wasn’t explosive as once was, the best days was in the [rear] view, questioned your drive, your leadership, your commitment, you don’t have killer instinct, going back home is the worst mistake in your career, he got the coach fired, players traded, won’t work between him and Kyrie, Him and Kev won’t work, love your teammates to much, there’s no way he can deliver a championship in his hometown, etc etc etc…. But guess what THATS NONE OF MY BUSINESS #StriveForGreatness #ThisOneIsForTheLand #PutSomeRespeckOnMyName Hahahaha!!! Yes sir

James, who limits his social media presence during the postseason, also told ESPN that he had an issue with some people close to him who questioned his desire to leave the Heat two years ago in an effort to bring Cleveland a title.

“When I decided to leave Miami — I’m not going to name any names, I can’t do that — but there were some people that I trusted and built relationships with in those four years [who] told me I was making the biggest mistake of my career,” James said.

“And that [expletive] hurt me. And I know it was an emotional time that they told me that because I was leaving. They just told me it was the biggest mistake I was making in my career. And that right there was my motivation.”

A crowd estimated at more than 10,000 was on hand to greet the Cavaliers when their plane landed at Hopkins International Airport around 12:40 p.m. James exited the plane with the trophy, wearing a shirt that read “Ultimate Warrior.”

Hundreds of fans camped outside James’ home in Akron as well, and he greeted them and made a few remarks.

— The prosecutor’s office in Ouachita Parish, Louisiana, declined to pursue charges against two Alabama football players, claiming there was insufficient evidence. But it’s what the prosecutor said in a television interview that raised some eyebrows.

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: LeBron James,

Reports: Game 7 TV ratings best for NBA Finals game in 18 years

06.20.16 at 10:00 am ET
By   |   Comments

A great game got a great viewing audience.

According to John Ourand, media writer for the Sports Business Journal, the Cavaliers’ Game 7 win offered the best television numbers for an NBA Finals game in 18 years.

Monday’s Morning Mashup: Cleveland in control as it celebrates long-awaited title

06.20.16 at 8:27 am ET
By   |   Comments

Welcome to Monday’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.

MONDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: White Sox at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Diamondbacks at Phillies, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Giants at Pirates, 7 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Nationals at Dodgers, 10:10 p.m. (ESPN)
College baseball: World Series, UC Santa Barbara vs. Miami, 2 p.m. (ESPNU)
College baseball: World Series, Oklahoma State vs. Arizona, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship, Slovakia vs. England, 3 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship, Russia vs. Wales, 3 p.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

— A crowd estimated at 20,000 gathered at Cleveland’s Quicken Loans Arena on Sunday night to watch on video screens as the Cavaliers defeated the Warriors in Oakland for Cleveland’s first major sports championship since the Browns won the 1964 NFL title, and thousands more poured into the city to celebrate in the early morning hours.

No major violence or destruction was reported, although a police officer was injured when he was struck by a driver who then fled the scene. A spokesman said the officer was treated and released. And a man was wounded in the ankle when shots were fired just before 1 a.m.

A report that a fire truck was stolen turned out to be inaccurate, although fans did climb atop a ladder truck downtown to celebrate.

Police closed some highway exits downtown to help control traffic, and public transportation into the city was halted.

The Cavaliers were expected to arrive home shortly before noon, and a parade is scheduled for Wednesday.

“I an’t wait to get back home,” said NBA Finals MVP LeBron James.

— Meanwhile, a fan was seriously injured at Oakland’s Oracle Arena when he was pushed over a railing on the second deck during a brawl at the end of Sunday’s game.

The man was in critical but stable condition overnight, police said.

No immediate arrests were made, but police continued to investigate.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On June 20, 1980, the Angels routed the Red Sox, 20-2. Which diminutive Angels infielder led the onslaught with three home runs and a double?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “To go out there and be on that side of that type of game always feels good. I’m getting better, absolutely. There’s always room for improvement no matter how good you are. I’m still not satisfied.” — Red Sox starter David Price, after Sunday’s 2-1 victory over the Mariners

STAT OF THE DAY: 3 — Red Sox minor leaguers promoted to Double-A Portland on Sunday, with top prospect Yoan Moncada among them

‘NET RESULTS: Chris Cuthbert’s single in the 13th inning gives the Royals a walk-off win over the Tigers.

Jose Ramirez gives the Indians a walk-off win over the White Sox with an RBI single in the 10th inning.

The Dodgers beat the Brewers on a walk-off walk to Yasmani Grandal in the ninth inning.

Rockies right fielder Carlos Gonzalez races in and lays out for a catch against the Marlins.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Light-hitting 5-foot-4 shortstop Freddie Patek, who finished his career with 36 home runs

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Lionel Richie was born on this day in 1949.

Thinking Out Loud: Celtics should lock in on Oklahoma’s Buddy Hield

06.17.16 at 5:40 pm ET
By   |   Comments

Rooke_JohnThinking out loud … while wondering whatever happened to O.J.’s iconic white Ford Bronco.

— The Celtics recently worked out the guy I’d actually like to see them take at No. 3 in next week’s NBA draft, Oklahoma’s Buddy Hield. Dead-eye shooter. Mature player. Nice kid. He’s about as complete as you can be coming from college. But if not Hield, Boston should take that pick and a few others and deal them away for an established player/star.

— Not sure that Chicago’s Jimmy Butler, the former Marquette star, is that guy. Reportedly, the Celtics want him, but at what cost? I’m in the Kevin Durant-or-nothing corner. The Bulls are presently coveting a shot at Kris Dunn somewhere in that 3-5 range in the first round, according to several sources.

— Friars fans are gathering to see just where Dunn and Ben Bentil land on Thursday night at G Pub in downtown Providence, starting at 7:30 p.m. Should Bentil sneak into the first round, it will be the first time in PC’s 89-year basketball history that the team will have two first-round selections in the same year.

— The last time the Friars had two players taken in the same NBA draft? In 1997, when Austin Croshere was selected 12th in the first round (by Indiana) and God Shammgod was taken with the 45th pick in the second round (by Washington). Having multiple draftees has been much harder to accomplish over the past 27 years — in 1989, the draft was reduced to two rounds, down from 10 rounds in 1974 to 1985. Unbelievably, the league used to draft until there was literally no one left in the ’60s, up to an astounding 21 rounds.

— In ’85 the draft was shortened to seven rounds, before cutting it down to the present two-round affair in ’89. I’d be in favor of adding another round to the selection process, as most second-round selections are cast off to the D-League or stashed away on a foreign team anyway. Even a “territorial” pick, like what used to occur in the ’40s and into the ’60s with teams preselecting players from nearby schools, could help bring back local interest in a big way.

Read the rest of this entry »

Friday’s Morning Mashup: Rex Ryan declares Bills have ‘won the offseason’

06.17.16 at 8:16 am ET
By   |   Comments

Welcome to Friday’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.

FRIDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Mariners at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Pirates at Cubs, 2 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Rangers at Cardinals, 8 p.m. (MLB Network)
Soccer: Copa America quarterfinals, Peru vs. Colombia, p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: European Championship, Italy vs. Sweden, 8:30 a.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship, Czech Republic vs. Croatia, 11:30 a.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship, Spain vs. Turkey, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Golf: U.S. Open, 10 a.m (Fox), 5 p.m. (Fox)

AROUND THE WEB:

Rex Ryan

Rex Ryan

— Even if it were true, it would seem to be a silly statement to make: “We’ve won the offseason.” But Rex Ryan’s reputation is not as a coach who takes the time to think through his statements.

The Bills boss, who earlier this week brushed off a comment that he was on the hot seat, predicted Thursday he would be ridiculed for his latest statement of bravado, especially considering two key players — first-round pick Shaq Lawson (shoulder surgery) and wide receiver Sammy Watkins (broken foot) — are dealing with injuries, running back Karlos Williams showed up to minicamp overweight (blaming pig-out sessions with his pregnant wife) and cornerback Stephon Gilmore is unhappy about his contract situation.

Ryan said he normally is eager to go on vacation when minicamp ends, but this year is different.

“I can’t wait to get the season started,” Ryan told the media Thursday. “I’m just telling you right now: Forget the vacation. I wish it was shorter. And I mean it. I’m excited about this team. Obviously a lot of things have to happen and we’re a month or so away. I told our players today to ‘win July.’ We’ve won the offseason. I would challenge any team. I think we’ve won the offseason. But we need to win July. That’s when everybody is by themselves, on their own but doing the things to be in great shape when we get to camp, let’s avoid those injuries we had last year.

“I think we’re committed as a group. That ‘All in’ mantra, I know it gets used a bunch but I feel it’s appropriate for our team.”

Added Ryan: “That’s one of those things I shouldn’t say because they’re going to kill me anyway. But we’re on vacation so nobody’s going to read it anyway.”

Ryan is coming off an 8-8 season in his first year in Buffalo after leaving the Jets, and the Bills have not made the playoffs in 16 years. But Ryan — never one to lack confidence — made it clear he wasn’t just comparing this team to past Bills squads.

“I’ll challenge other teams, too,” he said. “I’ve been on a lot of teams. But I’ve been blown away by this group. I really have.

“I don’t know about these other teams. I’m sure they’ve had some great camps, too. But I’ve been really impressed with this group.”

— Thursday was a tough day for Stephen Curry. Not only did his Warriors lose Game 6 of the NBA Finals, he was thrown out of the game after barking at an official and throwing his mouthpiece. Then after the game he found out that his father-in-law nearly had his credential confiscated when he arrived at Quicken Loans Arena in an apparent case of mistaken identity.

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Rex Ryan, Stephen Curry,

U.S. soccer beats Ecuador to advance to Copa America semifinals

06.17.16 at 12:24 am ET
By   |   Comments

Clint Dempsey scored Team USA's first goal of the game. (USA Today Sports)

Clint Dempsey scored Team USA’s first goal of the game. (USA Today Sports)

The U.S. men’s soccer team will be one of the last four standing in the Americas, but its foul-ridden victory against Ecuador in the Copa America Centenario quarterfinal came at a major price.

Punching their ticket with a 2-1 victory against a worldwide top-15 squad at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, the Americans will see the semifinal of a non-Gold Cup international tournament for the second time since 1995.

However, they will be without 23-year-old offensive threat Bobby Wood, as well as two of their strongest midfielders in Jermaine Jones and Alejandro Bedoya, for their semifinal match against the winner of the Argentina-Venezuela quarterfinal. Jones will also be unavailable for the final, should the U.S. men’s team make it past the penultimate game.

The German-born American Jones received a swift red card after partaking in a 52nd-minute scuffle with Antonio Valencia, who was also sent off after receiving his second yellow card of the match.

Wood then received a yellow card a minute later for unsporting behavior, which combined with a yellow card in the group stage, will place him on the bench alongside Jones in the semifinal. Bedoya will also be benched due to yellow card accumulation, as a rough challenge in the 73rd minute earned him a flash of yellow. These were on top of a yellow given to Ecuador’s Juan Carlos Paredes in the 64th minute, as well as U.S. goalkeeper Brad Guzan in the 84th for time wasting.

While the stat sheet does not credit him, Wood was a nightmare for Ecuador, as he used his speed and physicality to fend off defenders and create chances from the first 20 minutes onwards.

The Hawaiian’s persistence would pay off, as he became the facilitator of the first goal of the match. He dribbled deep into the box before rolling it back out to Jones, who constantly threatened La Tri’s midfield with five steals in his 52 minutes of play. The Colorado Rapids midfielder then fired a cross right to Clint Dempsey, who positioned himself at the penalty spot to head the ball into the the top right corner of the net.

Wood would later provide his services in the 63rd minute, crossing one from the left corner flag at the up and coming LA Galaxy striker Gyasi Zardes. There, Zardes went back and forth with Dempsey in front of netminder Alexander Dominguez and potted his first goal of the tournament. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Clint Dempsey, copa america, usa soccer,

Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Fan violence continues to mar Euro 2016

06.16.16 at 8:23 am ET
By   |   Comments

Welcome to Thursday’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.

THURSDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Orioles at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Mariners at Rays, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Rangers at Athletics, 3:35 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Yankees at Twins, 8 p.m. (MLB Network)
NBA Finals: Warriors at Cavaliers, 9 p.m. (ABC)
Soccer: Copa America quarterfinal, United States vs. Ecuador, 9:30 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: European Championship, England vs. Wales, 8:30 a.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship, Ukraine vs. Northern Ireland, 11:30 a.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: European Championship, Germany vs. Poland, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Golf: U.S. Open, 10 a.m. (FS1), 5 p.m. (Fox)

AROUND THE WEB:

— UEFA’s warning to England apparently had little effect, as English hooligans and others struck again at the European Championship on Wednesday night in Lille, France, leading to 16 injuries and 37 arrests.

Police used tear gas and charged at chanting fans in an attempt to disperse the crowd, some of whom lit flares and bangers.

“UEFA regrets the skirmishes which occurred in Lille last night,” the governing body said in a statement Thursday morning. “Police forces made several arrests and were quick to restore order and keep the situation under control.”

England and Wales are scheduled to play Thursday afternoon in the nearby city of Lens. Many fans are staying in Lille, which is much larger. The shuttering of bars and a ban on drinking in the street the evening before the match — along with the presence of English police who were sent to help — was not enough to stop the violence.

Some Russian fans — another group that was warned by UEFA last weekend — also were involved in an incident in Lille, with one throwing a flare at a group of English fans following Russia’s loss to Slovakia in the same city.

UEFA threatened to disqualify England and Russia from the tournament after violent incidents involving the countries’ fans before and during the teams’ 1-1 tie Saturday.

FA chief executive Martin Glenn asked England and Wales fans to show “consideration and respect,” especially following the murder of two French police officers by a terrorist earlier this week.

“The big story wasn’t fans in Lille, it was the murder of two French policemen [by a lone attacker in Paris],” Glenn said. “A message to all English fans, Welsh fans too, is that the French are trying to deal with a real security threat. So, behave responsibility, come and enjoy the game, but just have a think about the wider position. Show consideration and respect.”

— Ichiro Suzuki passed Pete Rose with his 4,257th career hit in the Marlins’ 6-3 loss to the Padres on Wednesday night, although 1,278 of those hits came during his nine years in Japan’s Pacific League.

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Craig Sager, Euro 2016, Ichiro Suzuki, Pete Rose