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Carmelo Anthony says ‘the front office stepped up,’ Knicks now a contender 07.19.16 at 12:38 pm ET
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Carmelo Anthony

Carmelo Anthony

Speaking publicly on Monday for the first time since Knicks president Phil Jackson made a series of roster moves, Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony applauded the front office and was hopeful about the team’s chances of being a contender in the Eastern Conference.

“The front office stepped up,” said Anthony, an 11-time All-Star who has been a Knick since 2011. “It was a collective effort. They did their job and they did what they had to do to make some moves and make things happen. They put us in a situation to give us an opportunity. All we have to do is take advantage of that.”

“I think we have a good opportunity to do some things this year. It’s all about what we do. It’s all about us now. It’s all about how we come together, how we jell together. For the most part, the pieces are there, so it’s up to us.”

The Knicks, who have not had a winning season since they won 54 games in 2012-13, were able to trade for point guard Derrick Rose from the Chicago Bulls the night before the NBA draft. Jackson and the front office brass then had the cap space to sign Rose’s teammate Joakim Noah, swingman Courtney Lee and point guard Brandon Jennings.

Although Anthony believes the Knicks “have a very special team on paper,” there are plenty of red flags. Noah and Lee are 31 and 30, respectively. Jennings, once a top young star in the league, averaged seven points per game with Orlando last season. And Rose, the 2011 league MVP, is 27 years old and injury-prone. He has not played more than 70 games since that MVP year.

Despite the injury concerns with Rose, Anthony said he is not worried about the point guard’s health.

“As far as injuries go, it happens,” Anthony said. “But I think sometimes you just need a breath of fresh air, in Derrick’s case. I talked to him maybe once or twice, but he’s locked in right now. He’s focused. I’m hearing he’s healthy.

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Read More: Carmelo Anthony, Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, New York Knicks
Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Joakim Noah reportedly closes in on agreement to join Knicks 06.30.16 at 8:32 am ET
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Welcome to Thursday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MLB: Rangers at Yankees, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Cubs at Mets, 7 p.m. (MLB Network)
College baseball: World Series, Coastal Carolina vs. Arizona, 1:08 p.m. (ESPN)
WNBA: Dream at Sparks, 3:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
Soccer: European Championship quarterfinals, Poland vs. Portugal, 2:30 p.m. (ESPN2)
Tennis: Wimbledon, 7 a.m. (ESPN)
Swimming: U.S. Olympic trials, 6:30 p.m. (NBCSN), 8 p.m. (NBC)


Joakim Noah

Joakim Noah

— The Knicks continue to be busy this offseason, reportedly closing in on an agreement with Bulls free agent center Joakim Noah that will pay him $18 million per season.

Noah, a two-time All-Star and former NBA Defensive Player of the Year, would rejoin former Bulls guard Derrick Rose, whom the Knicks acquired in a trade on draft day, and shore up a frontcourt that was depleted when New York sent center Robin Lopez to Chicago.

“Oh, I want him,” Rose said of Noah during his introductory press conference with the Knicks last week. “I think his family knows that. I think everybody knows that.”

The 31-year-old Noah averaged 4.3 points and 8.8 rebounds in 29 games this past season — starting just twice as Bulls coach Fred Holberg moved him to a bench role — before he had season-ending shoulder surgery in January. A native of New York, he is close with Rose and Knicks star Carmelo Anthony.

Free agent deals can’t be signed until July 7, but verbal agreements can be made starting Friday.

The Knicks reportedly also plan to add a shooting guard, with Courtney Lee and Eric Gordon said to be among their targets. Signing Noah likely would take them out of the running for Kevin Durant, but they reportedly are not one of the teams Durant had agreed to meet as he heads to free agency.

The Bulls, meanwhile, are expected to also lose Pau Gasol in free agency as they start to rebuild around All-Star guard Jimmy Butler.

— The Thunder reportedly are attempting to make a play for Hawks free agent center Al Horford, offering other teams players such as Enes Kanter and Kyle Singler to clear cap space.

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Read More: Al Horford, Joakim Noah, Michael Phelps,
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Missing Ohio State football player found dead 12.01.14 at 8:09 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

NFL: Dolphins at Jets, 8:30 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Marist at Boston College, 7 p.m. (WEEI-AM)
College basketball: Nebraska at Florida State, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Rutgers at Clemson, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: South Carolina at Marshall, 7:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Texas Southern at Baylor, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)


Kosta Karageorge

Kosta Karageorge

— The Ohio State football player who went missing on Wednesday was found dead Sunday near the campus with what appears to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound, Ohio police said.

According to The Columbus Dispatch, Kosta Karageorge’s body was discovered in a dumpster not far from the two-story house in which he had been living. He had told his roommates he was going for a walk early Wednesday, and he had texted his mother that he was having issues dealing with concussions he had suffered. He apologized “if I am an embarrassment, but these concussions have my head all [expletive] up.”

A three-year wrestler at the school, Karageorge walked on to the football team this year. He played in one game.

Karageorge was scheduled to be honored along with the team’s other seniors before Saturday’s final home game, a 42-28 victory over rival Michigan.

“It’s hard to move on through the week knowing we don’t know where he is,” defensive tackle Adolphus Washington said Saturday. “He’s one of our brothers and it’s just hard.”

— Nets forward Kevin Garnett appeared to attempt to bite the finger of nemesis Joakim Noah during Sunday’s game in Brooklyn, although both players had a laugh about it afterward.

The incident happened during the fourth quarter of the Bulls’ 102-84 victory, when Noah was on defense and put his hand near Garnett’s face. Garnett, who earlier in the game got a technical foul for throwing an elbow at Noah, snapped at Noah’s fingers. The former Celtic did not appear to be joking around at the time, although he downplayed it afterward.

“I know how to bite somebody,” Garnett said (via the New York Daily News). “Obviously I was messing around in that moment. I wasn’t serious. I’m not worried about that. If I wanted to bite him, I would. Shout out to Mike Tyson.”

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Read More: Joakim Noah, kevin garnett, Kostas Karageorges,
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Sochi plans mass killings of stray dogs before, during Olympics 02.04.14 at 8:16 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

NHL: Canucks at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Islanders at Capitals, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
College basketball: Holy Cross at Colgate, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: St. John’s at Providence, 7 p.m. (FS1)
College basketball: Ohio State at Iowa, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Kansas at Baylor, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Mississippi at Kentucky, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Rutgers at Memphis, 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Missouri at Florida, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Wake Forest at Duke, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Butler at Marquette, 9 p.m. (FS1)


— The Sochi Olympics, already tarnished by the controversies over Russia’s attitude toward homosexuality and accusations of corruption, now has a new issue. The city is receiving criticism for contracting a pest control company to conduct a mass extermination of stray dogs prior to and during the Games.

The firm Basya Services has been killing stray dogs in the area for years, and director general Alexei Sorokin told reporters that his company has been hired to handle what he says are thousands of stray dogs that roam the streets.

Sorokin said one such animal wandered into a rehearsal for the opening ceremonies last week.

“A dog ran into the Fisht Stadium, we took it away,” Sorokin said. “God forbid something like this happens at the actual opening ceremony. This will be a disgrace for the whole country.”

Added Sorokin: “I am for the right of people to walk the streets without fear of being attacked by packs of dogs. Let’s call things by their real name. These dogs are biological trash.”

Animal activists protested last year when Sochi announced a contract to “catch and dispose” of 2,000 stray dogs and cats in preparation for the Winter Games. The city responded by agreeing to build animal shelters rather than make killing the priority, but activists say there is no evidence of progress.

Animal rights groups from around the globe are calling for Sochi to show more compassion.

“These mass killings are cruel, ineffective and unnecessary,” said Elizabeth Sharpe of the World Society for the Protection of Animals. “Only formalized vaccination, sterilization and responsible pet ownership programs can effectively and humanely control dog populations in the long term.”

— Bulls forward Joakim Noah got his money’s worth when he was ejected from Monday’s game against the Kings. Noah, who had received a technical foul earlier in the game, did not agree with a foul call when he pursued a loose ball, and he got his second technical for arguing. He then proceeded to point his finger at each referee and deliver a parting expletive] to each.

Noah was contrite afterward.

“I’m really disappointed,” Noah told the Chicago Tribune. “I shouldn’t have acted that way. I apologize. I’m sorry to all three referees out there. They’re out there trying to do their jobs and I should never have said the things that I said. I hope they accept m apology and I hope I can move on from this. ‘€¦ I was frustrated with the call, but it doesn’t give me the right to do what I did. I deserve to get ejected, and it was just a bad decision on my part.”

NESN announced the hiring of Sarah Davis as a reporter, anchor and host. Davis heads to Boston from Toronto, where she worked for Rogers Sportsnet, mainly hosting soccer shows.

“Sarah brings an upbeat and engaging personality with a passion for sports that should quickly endear her to fans of New England sports,” NESN vice president of programming and production/executive producer Joseph Maar said in a statement. “We are excited to add another reporter of Sarah’s caliber to our talented and still-growing team of sports anchors, hosts and reporters.”

NESN announced last week that Red Sox reporter Jenny Dell would be changing roles, a move that appears to be instigated by Dell’s relationship with Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Feb. 4, 1990, which Bruin became the 32nd goaltender in NHL history with 200 victories following a 3-2 victory over the Quebec Nordiques?

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Read More: Joakim Noah, NESN, Sarah Davis, Sochi Olympics
Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Kobe Bryant shows frustration as Lakers lose again 11.08.12 at 6:42 am ET
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Welcome to Thursday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

NFL: Colts at Jaguars, 8:20 p.m. (NFL Network; WEEI-FM)
NBA: Thunder at Bulls, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Clippers at Trail Blazers, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College football: Louisiana-Monroe at Arkansas State, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College football: Florida State at Virginia Tech, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN; WEEI-AM)


‘™¦ The Lakers are 1-4 after Wednesday’s 95-86 loss to the Jazz in Salt Lake City, and Kobe Bryant, who only days ago was ripping impatient critics, is having trouble containing his frustration with everyone around him.

Bryant played Wednesday night with an anger he acknowledged he had not displayed in a while, although he wouldn’t say the reason for his motivation.

“Nothing I care to share,” said Bryant, who finished with 29 points and six turnovers.

Said teammate Dwight Howard: “Sometimes I think as a team, we ought to be able to not really show our frustrations that much. A lot of the guys look at me and Kobe and they feed off us, so we have to do a better job of keeping our frustrations on the inside and just playing through it so our teammates won’t get down on themselves.

“I know [Bryant] was a little frustrated tonight. He wants to win just as bad as all of us do. We’ve just got to stay together, remember it’s a process and stay focused.”

Meanwhile, Lakers executive vice president Jim Buss isn’t ready to give up on coach Mike Brown.

“I have no problems with Mike Brown at all,” Buss said. “He just works too hard and he’s too knowledgeable for this to be happening.”

‘™¦ Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has also been the team’s general manager for many years, but former coach Jimmy Johnson insists that Jones’ implication that he was calling the shots during the team’s dynasty years in the early 1990s is false.

“This is completely a bunch of crock,” Johnson said in an appearance on “The Dan Patrick Show.” “Jerry started putting all those titles on himself after I left. He didn’t call himself general manager and president and all that stuff when I was there. He was just the owner.”

Actually, Jones was listed as president and GM while Johnson was coaching, but that means little to Johnson.

“It was in my contract that I had total responsibility for all football decisions,” Johnson said. “It was all in my contract, and he didn’t allow anybody to have that in their contract after I left.”

‘™¦ Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said he spoke to center Joakim Noah about his decision to shoot a 3-pointer in the closing seconds of a 99-93 victory over the Magic in an attempt to win free hamburgers for fans at Chicago’s United Center. If the Bulls had scored 100 points, all fans in attendance would have received the free burger.

After Noah missed one free throw with 23 seconds left and teammate Kirk Hinrich missed two free throws with 10 seconds left, the fans missed out on the treat, and many of them booed at the final buzzer.

“You have to respect the game because you never know what can happen in a game,” Noah said. “I just got caught up in the moment and I was trying to get the people a Big Mac. They really wanted a Big Mac [judging by how loud the crowd was getting] and I felt like, not only did I take the shot and miss the shot, we didn’t even get the Big Mac. Next time, I won’t take that 3-pointer.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Nov. 8, 2000, which player was named the 16th captain in Bruins history?

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Read More: Dwight Howard, Jerry Jones, Jimmy Johnson, Joakim Noah
Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Charles Barkley continues feud with Miami fans 05.24.11 at 7:53 am ET
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Welcome to Tuesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MLB: Red Sox at Indians, 7:05 p.m. (NESN; WEEI)


‘™¦ NBA legend Charles Barkley continues to hog the spotlight with his inflammatory words and actions. The TNT analyst gave taunting Miami fans a double-middle-finger salute Sunday, and then he offered this comeback: “They were telling me I suck. They were telling me I never won a championship. Like, ‘Come on, give me something better than that, dude.’ I always laugh at that statement, ‘You didn’t get a ring.’ I’m like, ‘Dude, you work at McDonald’s. My life’s a lot better than yours. You relax.’ ”

In The Miami Herald, Dan Le Batard has a look at Barkley’s love/hate relationship with the city.

‘™¦ With Bulls center Joakim Noah being fined $50,000 for his gay slur at a fan in Sunday’s game, Mike Berardino at the South Florida Sun-Sentinel questions how much abuse players must take from the public. Noah, who accepted responsibility for his actions, called the taunts he was receiving “disrespectful.” Said teammate Taj Gibson: “It was heavy.”

‘™¦ Mets owner Fred Wilpon is taking heat after his comments in an upcoming story in The New Yorker. In the New York Post, Mike Vaccaro begs Wilpon to sell the team. Also in the Post, it’s noted that Bernie Madoff turned down an opportunity to become a part-owner.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On May 24, 1988, a power outage caused the suspension of Game 4 of the Stanley Cup finals between the Bruins and Oilers. What was the score of the game when it was called in the second period?

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Read More: Bernie Madoff, Charles Barkley, Fred Wilpon, Joakim Noah
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Bulls’ Joakim Noah apologizes after exchange with fan 05.23.11 at 7:27 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

NHL Playoffs: Lightning at Bruins, 8 p.m. (VERSUS)
MLB: Red Sox at Indians, 7:05 p.m. (NESN; WEEI)


‘™¦ Bulls center Joakim Noah apologized after apparently using a gay slur toward a fan in the first quarter of the Bulls’ 96-85 loss to the Heat in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals Sunday night in Miami. Noah had just picked up his second foul and shouted at the fan after sitting on the bench. “I apologize,” Noah said. “The fan said something to me that I thought was disrespectful, and I got caught up in the moment, and I said some things that I shouldn’t have said. I was frustrated and I don’t mean no disrespect to anybody. I just got caught up.”

Noah said he expected to be fined by the league, which docked Kobe Bryant $100,000 for similar behavior last month.

‘™¦ Tyler Hamilton accused former cycling teammate Lance Armstrong of cheating and encouraging teammates to do the same. “I feel bad that I had to go here and do this,” Hamilton said during an interview on “60 Minutes” that aired Sunday night. “But I think at end of the day, like I said, long-term, the sport’s going to be better for it.” Hamilton also said that despite Armstrong’s claims that he never failed a test, Armstrong confided to Hamilton that he did fail a test in 2001 but made a deal with the International Cycling Union to have it covered up.

‘™¦ Penguins forward Mike Rupp, who led his team with 24 fights the past two seasons, talked to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette about how the death of Rangers 28-year-old enforcer Derek Boogaard might affect his profession. “If [Boogaard’s death] is linked to fighting, it could change the face of hockey,” Rupp said. “I would think the league would have to look to go down that road [to banning fighting].”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On May 23, 1996, which player became the first Red Sox pitcher in 10 years to get a hit when he recorded an eighth-inning single?

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Read More: Derek Boogaard, Joakim Noah, kobe bryant, Lance Armstrong
Pacers’ Danny Granger calls Bulls’ Joakim Noah ‘cowardly’ 04.27.11 at 10:53 am ET
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Pacers forward Danny Granger was not happy with Bulls big man Joakim Noah following Tuesday night’s Chicago victory that eliminated Indianapolis in their opening-round series.

“He pulled a cowardly move,” said Granger, who tried to get at Noah after the game but was intercepted by Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau. “He cheap-shotted a couple of my teammates, and one gets thrown out.”

Added Granger: “The refs never catch what he did. … It’s cowardly. And I’m going to say something about it. I wanted to say something about it all the way to the game was over. I just don’t think the game should be played that way. You can play hard and fight and battle, but when you start cheap-shotting people, it gets out of hand.”

Josh McRoberts was the Pacers player who was ejected, but he played down the incident.

“I’m not mad about it,” he said. “He got a good hit on me. They caught me trying to hit him back. It’s part of the game. I’m not going to say it’s dirty. That’s Game 5 of a playoff series. You can’t say it’s dirty, it’s part of basketball.”

Noah didn’t get upset when informed of Granger’s comments. “I wasn’t dirtier than anyone else,” he said. “It was a battle down there. I wasn’t trying to hurt anybody. I was just trying to win.”

Read More: Danny Granger, Joakim Noah, Josh McRoberts, Rumor Mill
Joakim Noah will undergo thumb surgery, could miss up to 10 weeks 12.16.10 at 11:19 am ET
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Bulls center Joakim Noah will have surgery to repair a torn ulna collateral ligament in his right thumb, which he will undergo on Thursday, ESPN reports. Noah started in the Bulls lineup on Wednesday against the Raptors, but after surgery is expected to miss about 8-10 weeks.

Noah had 11 points and 11 rebounds on Wednesday in a 110-93 Bulls victory, but according to Noah, the injury kept him from playing at a high level.

‘€œIt’s hurting and I’m playing and I’ve got to take anti-inflammatories every time I play,’€ Noah said after the game on Wednesday. ‘€œI can’t practice. I have to get right. I have to get right and get back to this team. I’m going to miss playing with the guys. It’s frustrating because I feel like we have a chance to be really, really good. And I’ve never been in a situation where we’re winning like this.’€

The injury, according to ESPN, was suffered back on Nov. 27 in a win over the Kings, and was tweaked again on Dec. 4 in a game against the Rockets. Noah said on Wednesday that he believes he has three torn ligaments.

Read More: Chicago Bulls, Joakim Noah, Rumor Mill,
Bulls concerned about Joakim Noah’s hand 12.15.10 at 12:47 pm ET
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The Bulls are concerned there may be ligament damage in center Joakim Noah‘s right thumb. General manager Gar Forman told before Wednesday morning’s shootaround that the Bulls are still evaluating the situation and Noah will be re-examined once he returns to Chicago on Thursday. If an examination reveals the need for surgery, Noah would most likely be out for a minimum of eight weeks.

Noah originally hurt the thumb back on Nov. 27 in a 96-85 win over the Kings, and he tweaked it again in a 119-116 win over the Rockets on Dec. 4.

When asked specifically on Wednesday if there was any structural damage in his thumb, Noah said: “I’m not sure yet. We’ll find out [Wednesday night].”

Noah, who has been averaging 14 points and 12 rebounds, is expected to still play Wednesday against the Raptors.

Read More: Gar Forman, Joakim Noah, Rumor Mill,