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Thursday, June 29, 2017

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Josh Hamilton getting booed at home

Josh HamiltonJosh Hamilton already dealt with being booed on the road to start the season, and now he’s hearing the boos at home, too.

Hamilton was booed on Friday night during the Angels’ 4-0 win over the Baltimore Orioles. Hamilton DHd and batted fifth, going 0-for-4 with three strikeouts. Multiple people noted that he was getting booed during the night, and OC Register sports intern Sam Strong says the boos got worse each time he came up hitless.

Hamilton has struggled to start the season and Angels fans are growing impatient with his and the team’s struggles. Since homering in back-to-back games against Houston on April 13 and 14 for his only dingers of the season, Hamilton has not had an extra-base hit. He’s also struck out 22 times and only walked twice since the 14th.

Hamilton was not in the lineup on Saturday and likely given the day off to collect himself. He took extra batting practice before the game and worked on his timing.

One of Hamilton’s biggest issues is how poor his approach has been. The guy regularly gets fooled by offspeed stuff and seriously looks sometimes like he has never seen a breaking ball before in his life. When he was struggling with the Texas Rangers last year, Nolan Ryan said he was chasing pitches and giving away at-bats. That’s pretty much been the story this year.

Fangraphs’ Dave Cameron wrote an article about Hamilton on Tuesday and said the slugger was “swinging himself into oblivion.” The article noted that Hamilton is chasing pitches outside the strike zone nearly 45 percent of the time. That statistical data certainly corresponds with the visual evidence. In order to turn around his season, Hamilton needs to curb his hack-happy approach.

Juan Manuel Marquez done fighting Manny Pacquiao

Manny Pacquiao Juan Manuel MarquezJuan Manuel Marquez has fought Manny Pacquiao four times and gone 1-2-1 against him, including a sixth-round knockout win in December. Pacquiao was looking at facing Marquez for a fifth time in a rematch, but Marquez chose to fight Timothy Bradley instead. Now he says he’s done fighting Pac-Man.

“With Manny Pacquiao, [I’m] finished there. I don’t want to fight with Manny Pacquiao because all finished. I won the last three fights. In four fights I won. I don’t want to fight with Manny again,” Marquez told The Los Angeles Times’ Lance Pugmire in an interview.

“I repeat: I don’t want to fight with Manny again because I won the last three fights,” he told Pugmire.

Marquez and Pacquiao fought to a draw in their first bout. Pac-Man won by split decision in 2008, a controversial majority decision in 2011, and then Marquez finally scored the first decisive victory in their series with the knockout in 2012.

There was speculation that Marquez turned down a fifth fight with Pacquiao because he did not want to go to Asia where Pac-Man wanted to fight for tax purposes. But he says he wanted to fight Bradley because he’s a champ.

“I want to win another belt,” says Marquez.

The two are scheduled to meet on Sept. 14.

I have to say, I was pretty tired of Pacquiao-Marquez fights and could surely go without seeing them fight again. At 39 years old, it’s quite possible that he’ll retire soon, too.

Carolyn Moos: Jason Collins’ announcement clears up a lot for me

Carolyn MoosOne of the more stunning aspects of Jason Collins’ announcement that he is gay is that he dated women and was engaged to be married for years. His ex-fiancee, Carolyn Moos, said on Tuesday that she never suspected he was gay. The two were together for eight years before Collins called off their wedding in 2009.

Even though the announcement likely stunned Moos, she said during an interview with “Amani & Eytan” on NBC Sports Radio that it helped clear up a lot for her.

“The biggest thing is not being aware of it or having something that is a little unexpected. It actually provided a lot of explanation for something that provided,” Moos told hosts Amani Toomer and Eytan Shander during the week.

Moos says Collins will be in her life forever and that she wants him to be happy because he is “an amazing person.”

“To hear that from him probably alleviated a portion of my confusion and my pain in 2009,” Moos told Toomer and Shander.

Moos says Collins was really good at pretending to be straight and projecting that image. She’s not mad at him for hiding something because she understands that he was struggling to understand himself.

Moos says the whole revelation has been difficult.

“This is probably the most challenging thing that I’ve ever gone through,” Moos admits.

“He’s a great person and he deserves to be happy as does any wonderful human being.”

Though the confusion in her personal life has been difficult, Moos says she is still looking to rewrite her “life script” and get married and have a family.

Moos is a certified personal trainer who also teaches yoga and is experienced with nutrition. You can learn more about her and her business at her website.

Kobe Bryant’s feud with mother reportedly started over money for new home

Kobe BryantKobe Bryant is fighting with an auction house over his mother’s decision to sell some of his memorabilia, and the root of their fight reportedly is money for a new home.

Bryant’s mother, Pamela, sold memorabilia from Kobe’s basketball career to Goldin Auctions and was paid $450,000 up front. She planned to use the money to buy a new home. Some of the memorabilia included trophies, rings, an autographed ball, high school game and practice jerseys, and Lakers gear, according to TMZ.

Kobe tried to block the auction because he claims he owns the memorabilia. The auction house filed a lawsuit in hopes of having Pamela declared the owner of the merchandise.

Early Saturday morning, TMZ provided some more background on the fight between Kobe and his mother.

TMZ says the issue erupted over Kobe buying a new home for his parents. He reportedly offered to buy them a nice home in Las Vegas for less than $1 million, but “they wanted something bigger and more extravagant” and Kobe said no.

Kobe’s parents reportedly are chapped that his mother-in-law, Sofia Laine, seems to be better taken care of than them; she is living in a multi-million dollar home in Southern California.

Kobe reportedly is upset over the whole matter because he feels like he has given his parents millions over the years. Bryant has had a rough relationship with his parents over the years, and things got particularly bad when he married Vanessa early in his career. His parents did not approve of the marriage for a number of reasons, which include their youth and Kobe’s lack of a prenuptial agreement.

This is a tough situation all the way around and we truly feel badly that the Mamba is going through it.

Susannah Collins fired over sex slip-up, raunchy videos or something else?

Susannah CollinsSusannah Collins was fired by CSN Chicago after her humorous, embarrassing slip-up went viral.

As seen in the video above, Collins was in the middle of an intermission report about the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday night when she talked about the “tremendous amount of sex” the team had during the regular season. Collins quickly realized her error and recovered by saying “success.”

The Chicago Tribune says Comcast Chicago fired Collins after the slip-up went viral, leading to a previous raunchy video series in which she participated receiving more attention. That series was called “Sports Nutz,” and it featured plenty of dirty language and low-brow humor. You can see an example of the show below:

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Joey Crawford ejects Chris Paul, Zach Randolph at end of game

Joey Crawford wasn’t content letting the final minutes of Game 6 between the Memphis Grizzlies and Los Angeles Clippers play out. Oh no. The veteran NBA referee decided he had to make himself a central story.

Crawford decided to eject Chris Paul with 2:29 left in the game. Tayshaun Prince was at the line and made his second of two free throws to put the Grizzlies up 113-99. After the second free throw, Paul and Matt Barnes sandwiched Marc Gasol who was in the lane. Paul ran up and rammed into Gasol with his elbow first. It was a physical play, but it didn’t seem to deserve an ejection. Either way, Crawford gave Paul a technical and tossed him.

Chris Paul Marc Gasol

“I don’t understand how you can throw Chris out of the game,” coach Vinny Del Negro said after the game. “Unless it’s something incredibly flagrant — which it wasn’t.”

Paul said his team had a small lineup on the floor and that he was going down to help box out Gasol.

After his ejection, CP3 gave a hug to Prince, Zach Randolph, and Jerryd Bayless before leaving the court.

Then with 1:57 left in the game, Crawford tossed Randolph. Mike Conley was at the line and getting ready for his second of two free throws when Crawford ejected Z-Bo. No real reason was given for the ejection.

The Grizzlies went on to win the game 118-105, but Crawford’s officiating was suspect. Chris Paul’s brother, CJ Paul, accused Crawford of having a role in fixing the end of the game:

With such a quick trigger, is there any surprise some Spurs players pretended to shoot a fake Crawford on Halloween? He really had no business ejecting those players, but that’s Joey Crawford.

In all, there were seven technical fouls called, two ejections, and the Grizzlies shot 47 free throws compared to 24 for the Clippers.

Zach Randolph chokes Blake Griffin during wrestling match (Video)

Zach Randolph and Blake Griffin got into it during the third quarter of Game 6 between the Los Angeles Clippers and Memphis Grizzlies on Friday night.

Prior to the two get into a wrestling match, Griffin was called for a foul for pushing Randolph in the back. After played resumed, the two were fighting for position in the low block like usual when they got tangled up following a Mike Conley 3-pointer to make it 74-59 Memphis.

Griffin appeared to lock up Randolph and take him to the ground. Z-Bo then went for rear mount on Griffin and began pinning him to the ground with his left arm. He then moved his left hand to Griffin’s throat and briefly choked the Clippers forward:

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James Harden’s strep throat so bad he struggled to drink water

James HardenJames Harden has been playing for the Houston Rockets despite being ill.

The Rockets guard scored 31 points in a surprising Game 5 win over the Thunder in Oklahoma City on Wednesday night, which was extremely impressive considering he was sick and later diagnosed with strep throat.

Harden still played in Game 6 despite the illness.

During Game 6, ESPN’s Holly Rowe reported that Harden’s throat was so bad during Game 5 that he had difficulty drinking water during timeouts. Rowe says Harden had to spray his throat with Chloraseptic to numb it before drinking water. Harden also had an IV at the hospital on Thursday.

Harden still played plenty of minutes and was Houston’s top scorer in the first half of Game 6.

He’s not exactly going to be remembered like Michael Jordan was for the “flu game,” but Harden’s effort is pretty impressive nonetheless.

Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce leave court without shaking hands (Video)

Kevin Garnett Paul PierceKevin Garnett stayed true to his competitive form to the very end. After the Boston Celtics lost to the New York Knicks 88-80 in a series-ending Game 6 at TD Garden on Friday, Garnett walked off the court without appearing to shake hands with his opponents. Teammates Paul Pierce and Jason Terry were right in front of him as they walked off the court and into the locker room.

Exiting the playoffs without congratulating his opponents on the court is a postseason tradition for KG. He and Rajon Rondo did it last year after Boston lost to the Miami Heat in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals. Neither player would apologize for not being sportsmanlike, and Rondo even said he wished the team had more “sore losers.” Though Rondo wasn’t around because he is rehabbing his knee injury, Boston did have more sore losers this time to join Garnett.

There actually is a lot more going on here than a matter of sportsmanship; there is a lot of bad blood between the teams. In January, Garnett and Carmelo Anthony got into it during and after a game. Then the Knicks angered the Celtics by wearing all black to Game 4 for the “funeral” of the Celtics.

Garnett is signed for two more seasons while Pierce has a $15.3 million team option. Boston could buy out Pierce for $5 million. Garnett, who is turning 37 on May 19, hinted in February that he would be retiring after the season. Pierce has indicated that he does not want to play for any other team. This may finally be the year both players call it a career.

If Garnett’s last actions on an NBA court were walking off without congratulating his opponent, it would be very befitting of his competitive personality.

Pablo Prigioni flopped all over against the Celtics (Video)

Pablo Prigioni flopPablo Prigioni got his flop on against the Boston Celtics in Game 6 on Friday night. The Knicks guard flopped at least twice during the game — once in the second quarter (video above) and another time in the third quarter (video below).

In both cases a Celtics player jumped and landed on Prigioni, so both foul calls were legitimate. However, especially in the case of the second flop, Prigioni completely exaggerated how much he was hit.

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