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Thursday, July 9, 2020

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DeAndre Hopkins tweets hilarious dig at former team Texans

DeAndre Hopkins and the Houston Texans had a messy break-up, and the star receiver showed no mercy to his former team on social media this week.

Hopkins tweeted his reaction Tuesday to Kansas City Chiefs star Patrick Mahomes’ historic new contract by saying that there were 24 reasons why Mahomes deserved it and zero doubts that he would win more Super Bowls.

It didn’t take long for Twitter to realize that Hopkins was referencing the 24-0 lead that the Texans infamously blew to Mahomes and the Chiefs during the divisional round of this year’s AFC playoffs.

Hopkins, who had been with the Texans for his entire NFL career, was shockingly traded to the Arizona Cardinals earlier this offseason. The move sparked rumors about a poor relationship with head coach Bill O’Brien.

The four-time All-Pro will get a fresh start in an up-and-coming Cardinals offense led by star quarterback Kyler Murray, but it seems that Hopkins couldn’t resist getting in one final parting shot at his old club.

Spencer Dinwiddie will not join Nets for resumed season in Orlando

Spencer Dinwiddie

Spencer Dinwiddie expressed optimism on Sunday that he will be able to join the Brooklyn Nets for the resumed season in Orlando despite recently testing positive for the coronavirus, but that is not going to happen.

Dinwiddie has decided to heed the advice of Nets team doctors and sit out the rest of the season, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.

We learned of Dinwiddie’s positive COVID-19 test on June 29, and he said at the time that he was experiencing symptoms that included chest tightness. Dinwiddie then tweeted on Monday that it had been 10 days since he tested positive and his symptoms were subsiding. He said he was planning to get back on the court if he had a negative test on Tuesday, but doctors apparently advised against it.

Dinwiddie was averaging 20.6 points, 6.8 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game this season, all of which were career highs. Nets center DeAndre Jordan also tested positive for the virus and decided not to participate in the resumed season, which means Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Dinwiddie and Jordan will not be available in Orlando. Brooklyn is currently the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference.

Report: Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert had issues before coronavirus drama

Donovan Mitchell

The relationship between Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert may never be the same in the wake of the circumstances surrounding both Utah Jazz stars testing positive for the coronavirus, but it might be an exaggeration to say the situation impacted their friendship. In reality, Mitchell and Gobert were never close friends to begin with.

ESPN’s Tim MacMahon took a close look at the relationship between Mitchell and Gobert, and what he learned was that there was “friction” between the two long before they both tested positive for COVID-19. The issues are said to be typical for two NBA stars playing together and were described by one Jazz source as “a 2 out of 10 on the NBA drama scale,” but they were magnified when Gobert’s positive test brought the sports world to a screeching halt back in March.

Gobert is often animated with his Jazz teammates when he feels he was open and should have gotten the ball, and there have been numerous examples of that involving Mitchell. Gobert also took a lighthearted swipe at Mitchell during an interview following a home win over the Detroit Pistons on Jan. 14, 2019. The center had 18 points, 25 rebounds and two blocks in the game and was conducting an on-court interview when Mitchell came up behind him messing around. Gobert turned to his All-Star teammate and jokingly told him to “pass the ball, God dammit.”

MacMahon says that remark made many within the Jazz organization uncomfortable, as they knew there was some truth behind it. That type of attitude from Gobert toward Mitchell has created some tension between the two.

“If you take a paper towel and just drip water on it, the paper towel is going to get moist and then it’s going to get damp and eventually it’s going to break,” one Jazz source said. “Rudy has to pick his spots, and Donovan can’t react to everything. Sometimes you have to play chess and appease your teammates.”

Gobert, to his credit, acknowledges that he “can be very annoying.” He also said he is sometimes tougher on Mitchell because he is proud of everything the team has accomplished and wants to hold everyone to a high standard.

“Like with me, people can be hard on me and I can handle it, but for some guys, it can become very frustrating. I can understand that 100 percent,” Gobert said. “Donovan has gotten better every year since he’s gotten here. I think he’s going to keep getting a lot better. It’s pretty much, I’m the a–hole.”

In other words, Mitchell and Gobert were probably never going to spend the holidays together. That is true of a lot of star teammates in the NBA, but the coronavirus situation obviously added to the tension. Mitchell was upset with the cavalier attitude Gobert showed toward COVID-19 before Gobert tested positive, and MacMahon was told Mitchell blamed Gobert for infecting him even if it could not be proven.

Mitchell insists things are fine now between him and Gobert, but the situation will be one to monitor both in Orlando this year and going forward in Utah.

Liquor store worker had Patrick Mahomes contract scoop before anyone

Patrick Mahomes

News of Patrick Mahomes’ contract extension dominated the sports world on Monday after it was reported that the Kansas City Chiefs agreed to a 10-year deal worth possibly more than $500 million.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter was the first reporter to share the news about the Mahomes extension. But there was someone else who knew the deal was finalized before anyone else — an unlikely source.

Katie Camlin, who works at a liquor store in Kansas City called Plaza Liquor, tweeted an hour and a half before Schefter’s scoop that she suspected the Chiefs and Mahomes had reached a deal. How did she know? Camlin used some deductive reasoning after a Chiefs front office employee bought six bottles of Dom Perignon to celebrate a signing that was not Chris Jones.

Camlin turned out to be correct that it was Mahomes and joked that she scooped Schefter.

“Holy s— I beat Schefter hahaha” Camlin tweeted.

Camlin received attention online for getting the scoop and even was the subject of a Kansas City Star story.

She says she is “overwhelmed” by the attention and was thankful she didn’t get in trouble at work.

This is just another reminder that the biggest news scoops can sometimes come from the strangest places.

Mahomes’ deal is the richest in NFL history.

Deshaun Watson has great reaction to Patrick Mahomes signing massive contract

Deshaun Watson

Patrick Mahomes agreed to a contract extension with the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday that should make every quarterback in the NFL happy. The deal could have a direct impact on Deshaun Watson’s future, so you can understand why the Houston Texans star seems quite pleased.

Watson was drafted the same year as Mahomes, and this is the first offseason both are eligible to sign extensions. Mahomes went first, and he landed a 10-year, $450 million contract from the Chiefs. Texans linebacker Dylan Cole shared the terms of the deal with Watson on Twitter, and Watson’s reaction was priceless.

Mahomes has set the market in some ways, but it would be unrealistic for any quarterback — even Watson — to think he will get anything close to that. Mahomes already has an NFL MVP and Super Bowl MVP under his belt, so his resume is vastly superior to that of Watson or Dak Prescott. His average annual salary of $45 million is also $10 million higher than Russell Wilson, who was the highest-paid quarterback in the NFL prior to Monday.

Still, Mahomes’ monster deal can only help Watson. Even if the former Clemson star’s next contract falls somewhere between Wilson’s deal and the extension Mahomes signed, that would be a win for Watson.

Cole wasn’t the only one of Watson’s Texans teammates to call his attention to the Mahomes extension, as JJ Watt also sent a great tweet about it.

Antonio Brown reportedly has preferred landing spot

Antonio Brown

Antonio Brown would probably take any contract offer at this point, but the star wide receiver reportedly has one team in mind that he would love to play for in 2020.

Brown is hoping to sign with the Seattle Seahawks, a source close to his camp told Mike Garafolo of NFL Network.

That is hardly a surprise, as the Seahawks are one of the teams Brown has been linked to throughout the offseason. The speculation that Seattle is interested in the seven-time Pro Bowler got even louder when Brown shared a video last week that showed him working out with Russell Wilson.

The Seahawks are already expected to have one of their best receiving corps of the Wilson era with Tyler Lockett becoming a legitimate No. 1 option and DK Metcalf poised for a breakout in his second season. Brown would make the group that much more dangerous, but his status with the NFL remains unclear.

Brown is still awaiting word from the NFL on a possible suspension. The league has investigated the sexual misconduct allegations against him from two different women in addition to other off-field problems he has had. Brown is basically in limbo until the NFL announces a disciplinary decision, but the Seahawks are a team to watch if a decision comes before the season.

H/T The Spun

5 NFL free agents who are likely to sign before training camp

Jadeveon Clowney

The 2020 free agency frenzy has long since passed in the NFL, with things slowing to an even more unusual crawl thanks in part to the coronavirus pandemic.

However, with the NFL set on opening training camps on schedule, we will likely see a run on remaining free agents in the coming weeks. And the good news for teams is that there are still plenty of quality — and in some cases, game-changing — players available for the picking.

Here’s a look at five current free agents who are likely to sign before training camps open.