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Saturday, July 4, 2015

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Linda Cohn caught trash talking Brooklyn Nets on ESPN (Video)

ESPN anchor Linda Cohn was burned by a hot mic during an episode of “SportsCenter” on Thursday.

Cohn must have been having a conversation off air about NBA free agency, because when the show re-joined and went live, she was caught on-air talking some trash about the Brookly Nets.

“You know who hasn’t done a damn thing (in free agency)? You [intelligible] on the Knicks, but what about Brooklyn?” Cohn said.

Cohn is a New York native and her rooting preferences frequently come out in her highlight reading. If you notice, she LOVES the Mets and Rangers and always gets way more enthusiastic and detailed about them, so it’s no surprise she had a strong opinion on the Nets and Knicks.

We all know that the Knicks have been striking out on free agents, but Brooklyn is facing an entirely different issue; they are trying to pare payroll. That’s what’s going on with them. As for Cohn, well, she is just the latest in a long line of broadcasters burned by a hot mic.

Linda Cohn

H/T Complex Sports
Photo: Twitter/Linda Cohn

What is the Berlin Wall? I went on Sports Jeopardy! and here’s how it went

Sports Jeopardy!

As many of you know, I filmed an episode of “Sports Jeopardy!” back in May. I wrote about the experience here on LBS and said at the time that I wasn’t able to reveal any details from the show.

Well, now that the show has finally aired, it’s time for you to watch and see how I did!

Here is the link to watch the show. All of my commentary is below!

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Antonio Gates suspended four games for substance abuse

Antonio-Gates

The NFL announced a flurry of suspensions on Thursday afternoon, and the most surprising may have been the four-game ban San Diego Chargers tight end Antonio Gates has received for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

In a statement on his Twitter account, Gates insisted he would never knowingly ingest a banned substance. He claims he tested positive after using what he thought were “substances and holistic medicines” to recover from injuries he suffered last season.

“In my 12 years in the NFL, I have taken tremendous pride in upholding the integrity of the NFL shield and all that it entails,” Gates wrote. “I have taken extreme care of my body with a holistic approach and I have never knowingly ingested a substance that was banned by the NFL.

“In an effort to recover from this past season, I used supplements and holistic medicines, and unfortunately, I have now learned that those substances always present a risk because they may contain banned substances even if the ingredient list doesn’t reflect them.”

Gates added that he takes full responsibility and should always know what he is putting into his own body. The eight-time Pro Bowler is, by all indications, a respected veteran across the league, so news of his suspension comes as a shock to many.

Dallas Cowboys linebacker Rolando McClain, New York Jets defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, and Green Bay Packers defensive end Datone Jones were also suspended for violations.

Photo: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Tim Duncan officially returning to Spurs for another season

Tim Duncan

Tim Duncan on Thursday officially announced that he will be returning to the San Antonio Spurs for another season.

The 39-year-old told Kolten Parker of the San Antonio Express-News that his decision to return for a 19th NBA season was solidified when he sat down with Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich on Wednesday.

“I’ll be back on the court,” Duncan said.

Common sense could tell you that Duncan was returning, as he was said to be part of San Antonio’s meeting with free agent forward LaMarcus Aldridge on Wednesday. There have also been rumors that he will sign a contract that helps give the Spurs cap relief, and some of that money could be used for Aldridge.

Duncan averaged 13.9 points — the second-lowest total of his career — and 9.1 rebounds per game last season. However, he proved that he still has plenty left in the tank when he averaged 17.9 points and 11.1 rebounds in a thrilling seven-game playoff series against the Los Angeles Clippers.

If the Spurs can sign Aldridge, there’s no reason they can’t contend in the Western Conference again next season.

Rolando McClain suspended four games for substance abuse

Rolando McClain

The NFL announced on Thursday that Dallas Cowboys linebacker Rolando McClain has been suspended for the first four games of the regular season for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

McClain, 25, apologized in a statement through the NFL Players Association.

“I apologize to my family, the Cowboys organization, my teammates and Cowboys fans for my mistake,” he said. “I will not break the rules of my profession in the future, and I regret my error. I look forward to returning to the field on week 5, when I hope to help my team beat the Patriots.”

In typical NFL fashion, the league has chosen to announce several suspensions just before the start of a holiday weekend. New York Jets defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson will also miss the first four games of the season due to alleged marijuana use.

McClain has had plenty of issues off the field since he was drafted by the Oakland Raiders with the No. 8 overall pick in the 2010 draft. The former Alabama star has been arrested multiple times. He was out of football for a full year after the 2012 season and screwed up his comeback attempt by showing up late to a workout with an NFL team.

The Cowboys decided to give McClain another chance last season, and he recorded 81 total tackles in 13 games. It’s unclear how his latest off-field incident will affect his future.

Sheldon Richardson suspended four games for alleged marijuana use

Sheldon-Richardson

New York Jets defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson has been suspended for the first four games of the regular season for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy, the league announced on Thursday.

Richardson, a former first-round pick who is entering his third season, apologized in a statement issued by the team.

“I apologize for letting down my family, teammates, this organization and the fans,” he said. “However, words aren’t enough. This is something that can only be addressed by how I handle myself from this point on. I don’t want this to take away from what the team is trying to accomplish. While I won’t be there at the start of the regular season, I will do whatever I can to support my teammates until I’m able to return to the field.”

Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reports that Richardson’s suspension stems from marijuana use.

Richardson is expected to anchor the inside of what should be a vastly-improved Jets defense. He led the Jets with eight sacks last season and made his first Pro Bowl appearance.

Ironically, Richardson has been one of the most outspoken players on the Jets this offseason in mentioning the improvements the team has made. You might remember when he made this prediction a couple of months back.

If the 24-year-old is going to help the Jets become a playoff team, he’ll have to wait until Week 5 to do it.

Mike Scioscia took down Mike Trout’s Nerf basketball hoop

Mike Scioscia Angels

There shall be no distractions inside Mike Scioscia’s clubhouse. Not even Nerf basketball hoops are safe.

In light of the conflict between Scioscia and Jerry DiPoto, who resigned as the team’s GM Wednesday, Yahoo’s Jeff Passan wrote a column detailing some of the longtime Angels manager’s stodgy ways. For instance, Passan reports that Scioscia last year wouldn’t allow a Nerf basketball hoop that MVP Mike Trout had put up inside the team’s clubhouse.

From Passan’s report:

So Mike Trout hung one of those Nerf mini-basketball hoops in the Angels’ clubhouse. One day, according to league sources, the hoop came down. Trout hung it back up. Down it went again.

Mike Scioscia, the sources said, did not like the idea of a foam ball being tossed around in his domain. He didn’t like loud music, either, so he turned the volume knob to a level he deemed appropriate.

Ouch. Not even a Nerf hoop? Not even for Mike Trout? That’s pretty weak sauce, Sciosc.

Passan also reports that Scioscia is the antithesis of a players’ manager and that players are actually in fear of him. If Nerf hoops aren’t even allowed, it’s easy to see why they would be in fear.

Of course, based on what Scioscia did last year, we already knew he was a “no fun allowed” kind of guy. In some respects that is a good thing because everyone knows who the boss is, but you have to also know when to loosen up.

Greg Monroe chose Bucks over Knicks, Lakers for playoff potential

Greg-Monroe

The Los Angeles Lakers are not the only storied NBA franchise that is struggling to attract free agents this offseason.

On Thursday, Greg Monroe agreed to a three-year, $50 million deal with the Milwaukee Bucks that includes a player option after the second season. The 25-year-old turned down the New York Knicks, Lakers and others to join a smaller market team that he believes is better suited for success in the future.

A free agent joining the Bucks over the Knicks and Lakers proves how much times have changed in the NBA. In fact, Monroe’s agent David Falk told NBA.com’s David Aldridge that the Knicks offered his client a max contract with any number of allowable years that he wanted, but Monroe still turned it down.

Monroe, who averaged 15.9 points and 10.2 rebounds per game with the Detroit Pistons last season, will join a young core of players that includes Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jabari Parker and Michael Carter-Williams. The Bucks reached the playoffs last season in their first year under Jason Kidd and were eliminated in the first round.

If someone had told you years that the Bucks would have an easier time attracting free agents than the Knicks and Spurs in the future, you would have probably laughed.

Ronda Rousey wants to beat Bethe Correia in ‘most embarrassing way possible’

Ronda Rousey is known for making incredibly quick work of her opponents, but it sounds like she wants to beat Bethe Correia up a bit before putting her out of her misery.

During an appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” Wednesday night, Rousey was asked why she chose to fight Correia in Bethe’s home country of Brazil. The UFC women’s bantamweight champion said her goal is to embarrass Correia as much as she can.

“I just wanted to beat her in the most devastatingly embarrassing way possible,” I’m not afraid to let go of the hometown advantage. She’s much more than a hometown advantage away from beating me.”

Rousey later said that she is more inclined to end the fight quickly if she likes her opponent.

“If I make the fight fast, that means I like you,” she explained. “That’s me at my most merciful. With this next chick that I don’t like, it’s not going to be like that. She’s going to look different walking out than she did walking in.”

Ronda Rousey

Rousey’s last two fights lasted a combined 30 seconds. That’s right, combined. She must really, really like Cat Zingano and Alexis Davis.

Rousey obviously despises Correia for reasons including — but not limited to — some insensitive comments Correia made about suicide. In reality, we know Rousey would be just as happy to slap an arm bar on Correia and make her tap out in 20 seconds.

TUF weekly recap by NOS® Energy Drink

Jason Jackson Mike Graves

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And it all comes down to the finale!

The Blackzilians entered Episode 11 of Season 21 of “The Ultimate Fighter” leading their competition with American Top Team 300-200 points. A win for the Blackzilians would have ended the competition, while ATT needed a victory just to even up the series. And in a most improbable fashion imaginable, ATT came back for the win.

The Blackzilians chose Jason Jackson to represent them in the fight, while ATT countered with Mike Graves. Jackson had won his fight earlier in the season, while Graves had lost, so choosing Graves was a mixed decision for ATT.

When they polled the gym’s coaches, one was very vocal about wanting Soldado to fight, while four other coaches chose Graves.

“He has all the talent in the world,” ATT’s Dan Lambert said of Graves.

After being picked, Graves said that cutting weight would “be hard,” but he believed he would be able to do it.

The Blackzilians’ choice of Jason Jackson to fight was an easy one.

“Jason’s just a special talent and I believe in him,” Blackzilians owner Glenn Robinson said.

Jackson was pumped up for his fight.

“I’m very excited. This is a big test for me,” Jackson said. “If I don’t challenge myself, I don’t belong in the UFC. … I don’t care about TV time; I’m just here to win. … I’m out to prove that I’m an a– kicking machine.”

While preparing for the fight, Graves had an injury scare that could have put his status for the fight in doubt. He felt something pop in his shoulder blade and it stiffened up. He described it as a stinger in his neck, but said he wouldn’t let it keep him from fighting.

“I’m hurt but I’ll just work through it,” Graves said.

He recalled a time in high school as a wrestler when the same thing happened. He said he fought through and still won his match.

Would history repeat itself?

When the fight started, Graves came out early throwing kicks. A major turning point occurred about a minute in when the two threw kicks at the same time and collided. Graves appeared to get kicked in the groin and was grabbing at his privates, though the referee did not stop the fight despite the foul. That led to a huge advantage for Jackson, who pounced and went in to finish Graves. Jackson pounded away at Graves with knees to the side and strikes to the head. He was hammering Graves for over a minute straight while Graves was covered up like a turtle. Oddly, the referee never stopped the fight, and Graves eventually escaped and reversed the situation. He took down Jackson, got a rear mount, and went looking for a choke. Jackson, who must have been gassed from pounding Graves for over a minute straight, succumbed to Graves, who submitted him with a rear-naked choke at 3:01 in the first round.

The Blackzilians — namely Glenn Robinson — were furious.

“The guy didn’t defend himself for 1:30!” Robinson complained to the ref after the fight.

Even ATT conceded that the outcome was surprising.

Lambert called it “one of the crazier fights” he’d ever seen. He also admitted he “was surprised the ref did not stop it.”

Graves also said he was worried about the ref stopping the fight.

Jackson said after the fight that his effort to get a stoppage wore him out. He says he broke his hand pounding Graves and that’s why he was unable to defend the submission.

As hard as it is to believe, the teams are now tied 300-300, and it all comes down to the final fight of the season in episode 12.

There were a few other notable moments from the show. There was the coaches’ challenge where gym owners Dan Lambert and Glenn Robinson squared off in a relay race, with Lambert easily winning and then talking crap.

“Can’t really take a lot of pride when you beat Glenn in something physical,” Lambert said sarcastically.

Kamaru Usman and Sabah Homasi also got into a conflict at the house, so there is a lot of tension between them leading into the final episode.

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Below is the NOS® performance replay from the fight:

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