|Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Shocked Chiefs attend memorial service for Jovan Belcher||12.06.12 at 8:03 am ET|
THURSDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NFL: Broncos at Raiders, 8:20 p.m. (NFL Network; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Knicks at Heat, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Mavericks at Suns, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: Vanderbilt at Xavier, 7:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Long Beach State at Syracuse, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
AROUND THE WEB:
♦ Chiefs players and staff attended a private memorial service Wednesday for Jovan Belcher, the linebacker who killed his girlfriend and then himself over the weekend.
General manager Scott Pioli gave a eulogy for Belcher during the one-hour service. Pioli and coach Romeo Crennel tried to calm Belcher before the player shot himself in the stadium parking lot on Saturday.
“It was rough on him,” Hall of Famer Bobby Bell said of Pioli. “It’s a sad situation. You never want to be put under those situations. … You don’t want to see things like that. For him to get up and say something, I don’t know how he got through it.”
Chiefs players attending the service had little or nothing to say, but Bell summed up their feelings.
“You don’t wish this on anyone,” said Bell, a Chiefs linebacker/defensive end from 1963-74. “He’s done what he did, and it’s over with, and now we have to sit back and see where we go from here. I’m in a daze. … I can’t understand a young kid, 25 years old … his life is in front of him, and for it to be cut this short.
“Now the team has to move forward. It’s tough on them. A lot of the guys … when you see somebody and played with them, your buddy, your friend … he was just too young, man.”
Meanwhile, it was reported Wednesday that the estate of guardian of Belcher’s infant daughter will receive more than $1 million under terms of the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement.
♦ Steelers wide receiver Plaxico Burress, who served jail time after accidentally discharging a gun at a nightclub when he was with the Giants, talked about NFL players and guns in the wake of the Belcher murder-suicide. Burress said he didn’t think NFL players would change their attitudes despite the tragedy in Kansas City.
“Things like this happen to people every day,” Burress told USA Today. “It just happened to be Jovan, somebody that we knew. That’s why we’re having this discussion. But it goes on in society all the time.”
Added Burress: “It’s not really the culture of the NFL, it’s about what’s going on in society today.”
♦ Gerald Wallace became the second NBA player to be fined for flopping, joining Nets teammate Reggie Evans on the list of offenders. Wallace was fined $5,000 Wednesday, after the league reviewed his third-quarter dive while guarding LeBron James during Saturday’s 102-89 loss to the Heat. Wallace’s first flop came during a 96-89 overtime victory over the Knicks, when he was defending Carmelo Anthony.
The Nets are the only team with more than one player who violated the new rules.
♦ Utah State basketball player Danny Berger was in critical condition Wednesday after collapsing at practice a day earlier. The 22-year-old junior had to be revived via CPR and a defibrillator after he stopped breathing.
Berger’s older brother, John, read from a prepared statement Wednesday and thanked assistant athletic trainer Mike Williams for his prompt response.
“He saved my brother’s life and I thank God for him,” an emotional John Berger said.
Wednesday night’s scheduled game at Brigham Young was postponed due to Berger’s situation.
ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Dec. 6, 1976, the Red Sox traded a young Cecil Cooper to the Brewers for which two players?
|NBA roundup: Nets retain Deron Williams after acquiring Joe Johnson||07.04.12 at 11:33 am ET|
Although no new contracts can officially be signed until July 11, a few teams already have reached agreements with some free agents. Here’s a recap of all the moves from a busy day Tuesday.
The Nets, preparing for their first season in Brooklyn, stole almost all the headlines. They came to an agreement to re-sign sought-after point guard Deron Williams, who hinted at his decision Tuesday night by tweeting a picture of the Nets logo. The deal reportedly is for five years and $98 million. Last season Williams averaged 21 points per game for the Nets.
The Williams deal came after reports that the Nets agreed to a multiplayer trade with the Hawks that will send Joe Johnson to Brooklyn in exchange for Jordan Farmar, DeShawn Stevenson, Johan Petro, Anthony Morrow and Jordan Williams along with a first-round draft pick.
Brooklyn’s flurry of moves come two days after the team reportedly agreed with Gerald Wallace on a four-year, $40 million deal. Wallace, acquired by the Nets at the trade deadline, averaged 13.8 points and 6.7 rebounds last season in Portland and New Jersey.
The Hawks also were busy Tuesday. In addition to the trade of Johnson, Atlanta reportedly agreed to swap forward Marvin Williams for Jazz guard Devin Harris. Williams averaged 10.2 points and 5.2 rebounds per game last season, while Harris averaged 13 points per game.
Eric Gordon, a restricted free agent guard for the Hornets, opted to sign with the Suns for a reported four-year contract worth $58 million. The Hornets are expected to match the offer within the three-day limit, although Gordon said he would like to play for Phoenix.
The Raptors reportedly reached an agreement with Knicks guard Landry Fields for $20 million over three years. Because Fields is a restricted free agent, the Knicks have three days to match the offer. Last season Fields averaged 4.2 rebounds and 8.8 points per game while shooting 46 percent from the field.
|Report: Nets sign F Gerald Wallace to four-year deal||07.01.12 at 8:32 pm ET|
The Nets have re-signed small forward Gerald Wallace to a four-year deal worth $40 million, according to ESPN.
Wallace, 29, opted out of the final year of his contract last month but apparently had the intent of staying with Brooklyn. He was scheduled to earn $9.5 million this year before he opted out.
The Nets acquired Wallace from the Trail Blazers at the trade deadline in exchange for Mehmut Okur, Shawne Williams and a top-three-protected first-round pick. Since the Nets were sixth in the lottery, the pick went to the Blazers, who selected Damian Lillard.
Wallace averaged 15.2 points and 6.8 rebounds for the Nets over 16 games.
|National analysis of Thursday’s NBA trades||02.25.11 at 12:13 pm ET|
Although the Carmelo Anthony and Deron Williams trades earlier this week made the biggest NBA headlines, Thursday, the day of the trade deadline, was the busiest day in terms of the number of deals.
The Thursday deal receiving the most attention, especially around here, is the Celtics’ trade of Kendrick Perkins and Nate Robinson to the Thunder for Jeff Green and Nenad Krstic.
Here at WEEI.com, Paul Flannery writes that the trade was a bold move that Danny Ainge agonized over before deciding to take the gamble. Flannery says the deal could turn out to be brilliant, or it could end up looking reckless.
Out in Oklahoma City, Berry Tramel of The Oklahoman writes that Perkins gives the Thunder some much-needed toughness in the low post and that he should fit in perfectly with what the team is trying to do. Tramel says Green will be missed and other guys will have to step up to replace his scoring, but that the trade ultimately makes the Thunder better.
Also busy on Thursday were the Rockets, who sent Shane Battier and Ish Smith to the Grizzlies for Hasheem Thabeet, DeMarre Carroll and a first-round pick. Moisekapenda Bower of Fox Sports Houston writes that the Rockets are looking to the future with this deal and waving the white flag for this season. The Memphis Flyer’s Chris Herrington says Battier gives the Grizzlies a defensive boost and some depth while also ridding them of a “colossal bust” in Thabeet.
The Rockets also traded Aaron Brooks to the Suns for Goran Dragic and a first-round pick. Bower says acquiring Dragic and a first-round pick, along with the other first-round pick from the Battier deal, give the Rockets some solid building blocks for the future. In Phoenix, Suns president Lon Babby told Sports 620 KTAR that Brooks makes the team better this season, but that he doesn’t expect him to be Steve Nash‘s heir apparent at point guard.
Meanwhile, the Clippers dealt Baron Davis and a first-round pick to the Cavaliers in exchange for Mo Williams and Jamario Moon. Lisa Dillman and Baxter Holmes write in The Los Angeles Times that the move gives the Clippers future salary cap flexibility and officially makes Blake Griffin and Eric Gordon the leaders of the team. Rick Noland of the Elyria Chronicle-Telegram says the trade brightens the Cavaliers’ future by giving them an unprotected first-round pick.
Finally, the Bobcats surprised everyone by sending franchise player Gerald Wallace to the Trail Blazers for Joel Przybilla, Dante Cunningham, Sean Marks and two first-round picks. John Canzano of The Oregonian writes that the deal gives the Trail Blazers something to celebrate and calls it a “slam-dunk trade.” Meanwhile, Tom Sorensen of the Charlotte Observer says the move makes the Bobcats “terrible” and rids them of the only star they’ve ever had simply because they didn’t want to pay him.
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