Saturday, February 28, 2009

Giants Tap Boley at Linebacker

The New York Giants have completed a deal with former Atlanta Falcons linebacker Michael Boley on a five year contract worth $25 million.

Boley, 26, will help the Giants in pass rush and pass coverage at weakside linebacker in the 4-3 system. Boley had a disappointing 2008 with only 73 tackles and one interception, but the year before, Boley had 110 tackles, two picks and three sacks.

If Boley can return to his 2007 form, it will make the Giants vaunted pass defense that much better. Expect Boley to have a big impact, with guys like Justin Tuck and Osi Umenyoria in front of him on the defensive line.

In 2008, the Giants used three different starters at weakside linebacker, with neither really staking a claim on the position. Boley will fill that need for Big Blue very nicely in 2009.

Devils Dominate Panthers

DEVILS 7
PANTHERS 2
The New Jersey Devils continue on a roll as they trounced the Florida Panthers 7-2 in Newark, Saturday afternoon.
Martin Brodeur, making his second start since his return, had only 17 shots attempted at his net, where he recorded 15 saves.
The story of the day was the Devils offense. Already up 2-0 after the first period, the Devils put up four more in the second to obliterate the competition. In a span of 3:21 the Devils scored three goals. Travis Zajac scored on the power play to make it 4-0. Later, Brian Rolston and David Clarkson added two more to make it 6-0 Devils. The Panthers couldn't get out of New Jersey fast enough.
The Devils are now 40-19-3; it is their 12th straight year of 40 plus wins.

Santana's Status Up in the Air Already

The last thing the Mets need in 2009 is an serious injury, especially when Johan Santana is involved.

Santana has yet to pitch in a pre-season game this year due to discomfort in his elbow. Today, it was revealed that Santana is suffering from an irritated triceps tendon that is causing the lefty to feel pain.

Santana will throw on the side tomorrow, and if he continues to feel discomfort, the Mets could send him back to New York for further tests. If all goes well, then Santana will pitch in a live game by mid-March.

The Mets failed to get a more established starter this off-season since their prime target Derek Lowe signed a four year deal with the Atlanta Braves. If Santana should miss any time in the regular season, the Mets are in trouble.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Jets To Land Sheppard in Trade With Eagles

There is a report from NFL Network investigative journalist Adam Schefter that the New York Jets and Philadelphia Eagles are completeing a trade that would send cornerback Lito Sheppard up the N.J. Turnpike to Florham Park N.J.

The Jets are looking for a corner to play opposite Pro Bowler Darrell Revis, and Sheppard might fit the bill. The Jets will send the Eagles a fifth round pick in this year's draft and a conditional second round pick for the 2010 draft.

Sheppard has made a career as a ball hawking corner with 18 career interceptions and three touchdowns in 93 career games. However, Sheppard is coming off the worst season of his career with just 21 tackles and one interception in 2008.

Sheppard is still very young; he will be 28 in April, so he is beginning to enter the prime of his career.

It was rumored that the Jets had an interest in former Raven corner Corey Ivy. It is unknown if they are still interested in him.

Jets Come To Terms With Raven's Bart Scott

The Jets and former Ravens linebacker Bart Scott have finally agreed to a six year deal worth $48 million, which will pay the linebacker $8 million a year, the Daily News Reports.

Earlier in the day, the Jets had come to terms with Scott's agent on a five year $40 millon deal, but Scott had yet to approve of the deal and reopened talks with the Ravens. This forced the Jets to serve up the extra year and money.
Scott is in the prime of his career at 28 years old but has not had a really good year for some time. In 2005, Scott had 94 tackles and four sacks, and, in 2006, he had a career high 103 tackles and 9.5 sacks. In the last two years, Scott has had only 2.5 sacks combined. Last year, Scott had his lowest tackle total since 2004 with 82 tackles.

Still, the Jets need help, and Scott, if he can get back to where he was in 2006, will be a welcome additon to a team in need of a strong middle linebacker.
Scott is very familiar with Rex Ryan's defense and will definitely help the other players transition quickly to the system.

Garcia Gets Crushed In Met Debut

CARDINALS 9
METS 8
The fight for the Mets number five spot in the starting rotation got a little clearer on Friday, as Livan Hernandez substantially out pitched Freddy Garcia in a 9-8 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals.
Hernandez was sharp, pitching two shut out innings without giving up a single hit. In the first inning alone, Hernadez threw only seven pitches.
As for Garcia, it was tourture watching him get through the third. Garcia gave up two hits, four runs and three walks in two-thirds on an inning. He was missing badly with his fastball and rarely threw strikes. With two on, Jon Jay drilled a double to right center to bring home one to get St. Louis to within 3-2.
After Garcia walked the bases loaded, Yadier Molina reached on a fielding error by David Wright to bring home the go ahead run to make it 4-3 Cardinals.
St. Louis would make it 9-4, before the Mets made it interesting. In the bottom of the ninth, Bobby Kielty hit a three-run home run to make it 9-7 before an out was recorded. The Mets were able to get two runners on, but Angel Pagan grounded out for the second out. Later, Alex Cora grounded right to the pitcher to end the rally.
The Mets are now 3-1 on the preseason. The Mets beat Team Italy of the World Baseball Classic 5-4 early Friday morning.

Yankees Fall To Twins

TWINS 5
YANKEES 4
After grabbing a quick 3-0 lead, the Yankees bullpen was unable to hold down the Minnesota Twins, as Minnesota scored four runs in three innings to capture the victory.
Brett Gardner led off for New York and did very well, doubling in the first inning and later coming around to score on a Cody Ransom single to make it 1-0. Ransom later scored on a Xavier Nady sacrifice to make it 2-0.
But Minnesota came back. Justin Kubel's solo home run in the sixth got the Twins to within 3-2. In the eighth, the Twins pounded Wilkin De La Rosa for two runs to take a 5-3 lead.
The Yankees got a run in the ninth, but Ramiro Pena grounded into a double play to end the game. BOXSCORE.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Brodeur Makes Triumphant Return to Devils

DEVILS 4
AVALANCHE 0

For the better part of the 2008-2009 regular season, Devils goalie Martin Brodeur has had to sit and watch his club try to win without him. No one would have thought that Scott Clemmenson would do an outstanding job in Brodeur's place, let alone that the Devils would be one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference.

Now with their leader back in front of the net, fully rested, the Devils will be extremely hard to beat this spring.

Brodeur was in mid-season form as he shut out the Colorado Avalanche with 24 saves. The win was Brodeur's 545 of a Hall of Fame career, and it was his 99th career shutout.

It is amazing how sharp a guy who has missed so much time from the ice can be, but that just shows how special Brodeur is and how much he means to his team. A fresh Brodeur is bad news for anyone playing the Devils.

Offensivley, the Devils wasted no time in getting their goalie some support. Jamie Langenbrunner scored his 19th goal of the year in the first period to make it 1-0 New Jersey. In the second period, Patrick Elias scored on the power play to make it 2-0 Devils. BOXSCORE.

Finally, in the third period, Zach Parise and Travis Zajac added two more goals for good measure as New Jersey romped past Colorado.

New Jersey is now 39-19-3, 11 points behind Boston for the number one seed in the conference.

Mets Bomb Marlins

METS 9
MARLINS 0

Mets manager Jerry Manuel wanted to get the most out of his starters before they leave camp for the idiotic World Baseball Classic, and so far this spring he is getting it.

The Mets blew out the Florida Marlins in convincing fashion Thursday afternoon as Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran both went yard in the effort.

With the Mets up 2-0 in the fourth and the bases loaded, Reyes lifted a fastball over the right field wall to give New York a 6-0 lead.

Fast forward to the sixth: Reyes again goes yard, this time to right as the ball cleared the left field foul pole to make it 7-0 New York. Carlos Delgado followed with a double to left; Carlos Beltran finally hit a home run to left center to make it 9-0 Mets.

Oliver Perez got the start and was in mid-season form. The lefty struck out three and walked none in two shut out innings to get the win. Meanwhile, Luis Castillo continues to come back from a disappointing 2008. Castillo went one for one with two runs scored and two walks.

Yankees Stay Perfect In Preseason

YANKEES 5
RAYS 1


The Yankees are now 2-0 on the preseason thanks in part to the efforts of Jorge Posada and Shelly Duncan.

Posada, who had to miss the second half of last season due to a knee injury, is back with a vengeance in 2009. The former all star catcher hit a solo home run in the third inning to give the Yankees a 1-0 lead on Tampa Bay.


In the fifth with Xavier Nady on second, Posada doubled to drive in Nady to make it 2-0 Bombers.

Finally in the seventh Shelly Duncan blasted a three run home run in his lone at bat to give New York a dominating 5-1 lead. BOXSCORE.

Phil Hughes got the start for the Yankees. He pitched two shut out innings, striking out two and walking one. This is a big camp for Hughes, who has to prove that his disastrous rookie year in 2008 was just an aberration. So far, Hughes is off to a good start.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Harris Leads Nets Again

NETS 111
BULLS 96

Devin Harris remains on fire. The Nets point guard added 42 more points, four rebounds and six assits in a rout of the Chicago Bulls at the IZod Center in East Rutherford New Jersey.

The Nets trailed 78-74 going into the fourth quarter, until Harris, Bobby Simmons and the Nets exploded for 37 points in the fourth to pull away from Chicago.

With Vince Carter struggling to score points, Harris' feats this week become that more remarkable. The Nets continue to climb back to .500 with their record now at 26-32. They are still a game and a half behind Milwaukee for the final playoff spot.

Giants Lock Up Jacobs Long Term

The Giants did their due diligence by completing a long term contract with running back Brandon Jacobs. The powerful back, who was given the franchise tag a month ago, will be the Giants prime back for the next four years at $25 million.

The deal includes $13 million in guaranteed money, with Jacobs earning $15 million in the first two years of the contract.

Jacobs was the heart and soul of the Giants ground attack in 2008; he rushed for 1089 yards with 15 touchdowns. When Jacobs had to miss some time due to injury, the Giants offense suffered a bit. With him, the Giants are nearly unstoppable.

The deal was a no-brainer for Big Blue.

Big Mouth Coles Gets Axed By Jets

If Laveranues Coles thought he got the last laugh after Brett Favre retired two weeks ago, he had another thing coming. Like something out of The Godfather or The Sopranos, the Jets whacked the big mouthed complainer, citing that his $6 million salary for 2009-2010 was just too much to handle.

Coles, as tough as he is, had a history of complaining whenever he was not happy. In 2002, he whined his way off the team when the Jets traded him to the Washington Redskins. However, after Coles drove Redskins coach Joe Gibbs nuts, the Skins sent him back to the Jets for Santana Moss in 2005.

This season, Coles was upset that the Jets traded away his buddy, Chad Pennington, in favor of Favre. Coles didn't speak to the media for weeks, and there were constant rumblings that he and Favre were not getting along.
In December, Coles ripped Favre in a San Francisco newspaper claiming that Favre had no arm strength anymore. In the nex to last game of the season, Coles had a sure first down at mid-field against the Seahawks, but suspiciously dropped the ball at the last minute. The Jets lost 13-3, and their season was pretty much over.

In 2007, Coles suffered a hideous concussion during a 13-3 loss to the Buffalo Bills at home that ended his season. Coles has had a history of concussion injuries in his career.

The Jets could still bring him back for a lesser price, but don't count on it. The Jets are now roughly $34 million under their cap for this season. The free agent signing period begins Friday.
Don't be surprised to see Coles wearing a Dolphins uniform next season, so he can play catch with his best friend of all time...Chad Pennington!

A-Rod Begins to Stick It To Critics

YANKEES 6
BLUE JAYS 1

Was it steroids or was it just pure strength today for Alex Rodriguez? Only one person knows, but for the rest of us keeping score, Rodriguez began to answer his critics today in the only way he could by blasting a two run homerun in the fifth inning as the Yankees romped all over division rival Toronto.

A-Rod got his share of boos and cheers throughout the afternoon, but it didn't faze him. Rodriguez went 1 for 1 with the two run shot and two walks. Maybe taking the heat Barry Bonds style is the only way to go for A-Roid? Just rake and no one can say anything.

Still there were other Yankees out there trying to make a statement this spring. Brett Gardner went 1 for 3 with a RBI, making a case to become the Yankees new center fielder. Free agent Nick Swisher had an RBI and two walks, while Captain Derek Jeter went 1 for 3 with a RBI.

Mark Texieria did not make the trip to Toronto's Spring Training home. C C Sabathia and A.J. Burnett stayed in Tampa as well. BOXSCORE.

Brett Tomko pitched two shut out innings as the starter, but Jose Veras got the victory, even though he was touched up for a run and two walks.

Castillo and Church Lead Mets in Opener

METS 9
ORIOLES 3

For much of the off-season, fans and media have called for the head of Mets second baseman Luis Castillo. No one was happy with the effort the former all star put forth in 2008, batting .245 with three homers and just 28 RBIs. Castillo failed to give the Mets the nessecary stats for a number two hitter behind Jose Reyes.

Once camp started two weeks ago, Jerry Manuel confrimed that he would like to see Castillo bat leadoff this season, with Reyes either as the number two or three hitter. The idea: put more responsiblity in the hands of Castillo to see if he could perform.

Well, in the Mets pre-season opener, Castillo performed. The second baseman went 2 for 3 with four RBIs in the Mets 9-3 victory against the Balitmore Orioles. In the second inning, with one out and the bases loaded, Castillo slapped a single up the middle to drive in two runs to give New York a 2-1 advantage.

Ryan Church, who has also gone under the microsope this spring after his return from two serious concussions, responded with a 2 for 3 day with three RBIs. Church also had two doubles on the afternoon.

Angel Pagan, who is coming off a horrific knee injury he suffered early last May in Los Angeles, went 3 for 4 with a run scored and a walk. Meanwhile, Mets left-fielder Dan Murphy went 2 for 3 with two runs scored and a first inning walk.

The Mets sent out their entire bullpen up against Baltimore. Middle reliever Sean Green got the rare start and got shelled for one run on two hits in two-thrids of an inning. Pedro Feliciano pitched an inning and a third of shut out ball for the win. BOXSCORE.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Harris's Miracle Resuces Nets

NETS 98
76ERS 96

Talk about a thriller! The struggling New Jersey Nets stole one from the Philadelphia 76ers in the final second after it appeared that Philly was on its way to handing New Jersey another disappointing loss.

After Andre Iguodala sank two free throws to give the 76ers a 96-95 lead, Nets point guard David Harris took the inbounds with just a second to go. Harris got to mid court and was able to get off the shot. It appeared that Harris was fouled, as he was hit on the arm while he was shooting. The ball glided through the air and dropped right through the hoop for the three point score.

Officals reviewed the play in order to confirm that Harris got the shot off before the buzzer sounded. The call was upheld, and the Nets won the game. WATCH TREMENDOUS VIDEO!!

Before New Jersey could even come out with the spectacular victory, they had to come back from a 31-19 deficit in the first quarter. The Nets rolled out 32 points in the second to tie the game at 51 going into the halftime. Harris was a big part of this comeback as well.

Overall, Harris had 39 points, two rebounds and eight assists in the game. Only Vince Carter was the second highest scoring Net with 10 points on the night.

The Nets slim playoff hopes stay alive; the Nets are stil a half game ahead of the New York Knicks at 25-32.

Robinson Leads Knicks Again

KNICKS 123
PACERS 119
Nate Robinson is a machine. The All Star forward continues to stay red hot as he dropped 41 points on the Indiana Pacers, 32 of which came in the second half alone.
Still the game was tight. The Knicks held only a 121-119 lead when Indiana's Troy Murphy was caught for a traveling violation as he was heading to the hoop for the game tying score. Robinson sank both free throws after the violation to give New York the four point lead.
Al Harrington contributed 27 points, while David Lee added 20 more for the Knicks. New York now improves to 24-32 on the season.

Rangers Finally Fire Renney

After a horrible stretch of hockey, the Rangers have finally fired Head Coach Tom Renney. The Rangers got off to a red hot start in 2008-2009, rolling to a 10-2-1 record in October.

However, the Rangers lack of depth and scoring eventually caught up to them and team fell from as far as the number one seed in the East to the fringe, missing the playoffs with 21 games to go.

Renney had coached the Rangers for five and a half years and led the club to three playoff apperances in the last three years. Last season, the Rangers were a strong contender in the East, sweeping the Devils in the first round, and losing in six tough games to Buffalo in the second round.

This year, with the loss of key free agents that helped the team win in 2007-2008, the Rangers were miserable this year. Overall, the Rangers are 31-23-7, but keep in mind that the seven are counted as overtime losses. In short, the Rangers are just a game over .500 at 31-30 this season.

Some speculate that John Tortorella will be the next head coach. Fans have called WFAN asking the for the firing of GM Glenn Sather, who has been a target of the fans hatred for over 10 years.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Rangers Fight, But Lose Anyway

MAPLE LEAFS 3
RANGERS 2
OVERTIME

The Rangers just can't catch a break. After fighting tooth and nail against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Sunday night, the Rangers still found a way to lose, 3-2 in overtime.

Three minutes into OT, Niklas Hagman scored on the powerplay with assists from Pavel Kubina and Lee Stempniak to give Toronto the win. This occurred after the Rangers scored in the final minute of regulation to tie the game at two.

John Mitchell opened the scoring for Toronto as he sliped the puck into the net 3:54 into the third period. The Rangers tied it on Scott Gomez's 12 goal of the year.

Ian White gave the Leafs the lead back with his eighth goal of the season just seconds later.

The Rangers continue their free fall out of the playoff picture as they now stand at 31-24-6.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Jets Continue To Make Cap Room

In their never ending pursuit to get enough money under the cap to afford some big prizes in free-agency the Jets have released tight end Chris Baker.

Baker who signed a huge three year extension in September, was released after another so-so year at tight end for New York. He lost his starting job this season to rookie Dustin Keller, who broke onto the scene with 48 catches for 535 yards and three touchdowns in 2008.

Cutting Baker means that the Jets will save $9 million dollars on their cap for next season. This is the fourth move the Jets have made to save money. First they cut outside linebacker David Bowens and inside linebacker Brad Kassell on Wednesday. Last week the Jets cut cornerback David Barrett and quaterback Brett Favre retired.

Right now the Jets are approximately $27 million under the cap now.

Knicks Blow Away Raptors

KNICKS 127
RAPTORS 97

If the New York Knicks are going to get themselves back in the playoff race, then they are going to have to take advantage of a fairly easy schedule on the horizon. Friday night the Knicks got off to the right start, as they blew away the Toronto Raptors 127-97 at the Garden.

The Knicks jumped out to a 42-22 first quarter lead. Nate Robinson, just days off of his triumpant effort in the NBA All Star Slam Dunk Contest was in the middle of it again for New York. Robinson scored 26 points in the effort on 10 of 18 shooting.

Wilson Chandler added 32 points of his own as he drained 12 of 23 shots, and was 6 for 10 from the three point line.

The Raptors were no match for the Knicks, as they shot only 41 percent from the field and 29 percent from three point land. Clearly not enough to even stay competative with the Knicks.
The win is the Knicks 23 of the season, which ties their win total for all of last season.

A-Rod Continues Pattern of Lies

Here is a new revalation for you; Alex Rodriguez may be witholding some more information about his steroid use. READ STORY.

In a report from Friday's Newsday, Rodriguez spent the 2007 season traveling and working out with a man named Angel Presinal, who was banned from from MLB because he was pushing steroids on players. Apparently he and A-Roid are very close, going back to their days in Texas.

It was also revealed that Persinal and Yuri Sucart are the "cousins" that Rodriguez was referring to on Tuesday.

Persinal has been linked to other major league stars including former Mets' Pedro Martinez and Mosies Alou. Boston Red Sox DH/1B David Ortiz and Angels Outfielder Vladimir Gurrero are also believed to have had associations with Persinal in the past.


It is not offically confirmed that Martinez, Ortiz or any of these others are on the list of 103 who tested positive in 2003, or if they ever took steroids.


Still, their relations with Persinal will come into question this spring. Ortiz came out a few days ago, scolding baseball for its checkered past, declaring that any user be banned for a year. Well, if Mr. Ortiz had his way, then he would be banned for a year as well.

As for Rodriguez, this could confirm fears that the former All Star has been lying about his use of steroids. He has admitted to using roids from 2001-2003, but never admitted to using them in 2007. With this new evidence, Rodriguez will have to answer some more questions.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A-Rod Says He Was 'Young And Stupid'

Alex Rodriguez faced the press for the first time since his admission last week to taking steroids during the 2003 season.

Rodriguez revealed some interesting insights into his steroid use. First, he said that he never knew what he was taking was steriods while he was with the Rangers, and later he added that in 2001, his cousin introduced him to a supplement known as Bole, which his cousin promised would give the star player an "energy boost." The drugs were acquired from the Dominican Republic.

Rodriguez refused to reveal the name of his cousin as a way to deflect blame onto himself.

A-Rod cited that he and his cousin were young and stupid back then. "When I entered the majors I was 18 years old, right out of high school. I thought I knew everything and I clearly didn't. I made a lot of mistakes in my life," Rodriguez said during his statement.

"It was part of being 24-25 years old, curious, ignorant. There are a lot of things you don't tell a lot of people, and that was one of the things I decided not to share with anyone."

"All these years I thought I was doing something that was not wrong."

LISTEN TO ENTIRE PRESS CONFERENCE VIA WFAN.COM.

Rodriguez said that he wished he had gone to college to really learn how to grow up, something A-Rod has struggled with for most of his professional and private life.

It is a rather poor excuse for Rodriguez to say that he was ignorant to what he had taken from 2001 to 2003. People are expected to be responsiblefor their own actions, and knowledgeable adults by the time they are 22 or 23 years old ought to know what they are doing!

For a guy like A-Rod, who has been photographed with a blonde woman in Toronto, hanging with Madonna, and, as recently as last week, partying with two young ladies in the Bahamas, it is clear that even at 34 years old A-Rod still has a heap of growing up to do.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Devils Continue Surge, Rangers Continue Splurg

DEVILS 6, SHARKS 5
FLYERS 5, RANGERS 2
The New York Rangers continue to sink faster than a man trapped in quicksand. The Blue Shirts dropped their seventh game in their last eight tries, this time falling to the Philadelphia Flyers 5-2 at Madison Square Garden.
The Flyers scored four goals in the second period with absolulte ease. The Rangers defense was terrible, and the play of goal Henrick Lundqvist left a lot to be desired.
Philly's Mike Richards got it started with a short handed goal at the start of the period. Later, Matt Carle, Glenn Metropolit and Mike Knuble added three goals in a span of 1:49.
If this performance does not lead to the firing of coach Tom Renney, what will? Keep in mind James Dolan is patient to a fault, i.e. Isiah Thomas with the Knicks.
As for the Devils they got into a high scoring fight with the best team from the West, the San Jose Sharks. The game went back and forth all night long, as San Jose held a 4-3 advantage into the final period, but the Devils stormed back with three goals in the final period to win the game. Patrick Elias scored on a power play to tie it up at four. Later, Jamie Langenbrunner scored on another power play to give New Jersey a 5-4 lead. San Jose eventually tied it with a goal from Joe Pavelski.
Finally, with 4:32 to go, David Clarkson scored on a power play goal to give the Devils the 6-5 advantage. Clarkson had a goal earlier in the game at the end of the first period to give New Jersey a 3-2 lead.
The Devils remain eight points ahead of Philly for first in the Atlantic Division.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Mets Ink El Duque's Brother Livan Hernandez

The New York Mets have completed a one year minor league contract with the brother of former Met and Yankee Orlando "El Duque" Hernandez, Livan Hernandez, the Daily News reported Saturday.

Livan has been a target of GM Omar Minaya for a better part of the past two years through trade rumors, but now that Minaya gets his hands on a man who pitched for Minaya when the two were with the Montreal Expos in 2003 and 2004.

Hernandez earned the reputation as a big game pitcher after leading the Florida Marlins to the 1997 World Series title in Game Seven against the Cleveland Indians.

Hernandez is known as a versatile innings eater who usually gives his clubs 200 plus innings every season. The best season of Hernandez's career came back in 2000, when he was 17-11 with a 3.75 ERA with the San Francisco Giants.

Hernandez has not pitched as well lately. In 2007, he was 11-11 with a 4.93 ERA with the Arizona Diamondbacks. Last season Herandez split time with the Minnesota Twins and Colorado Rockies going 13-11 with a 6.05 ERA.

Hernandez will compete with Freddy Garcia, Jon Niese and Tim Redding for the Mets fifth spot in the rotation.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

UPDATED: Suddenly It's Mike Versus The Mad Dog

It seems that the recent economic meltdown has given new life to the Mike Francesa/Chris Russo radio breakup of last summer. (THIS IS AN UPDATED VERSION THAT INCLUDES RUSSO'S CONVERSATION WITH HOWARD STERN. KEEP READING!)

Sirius Satellite Radio, the station that Russo left because of the lucrative opportunity of hosting and producing his own network show last August, is in big trouble. According to a story from the New York Times, Sirius is considering filing for bankruptcy. The company is $3.25 billion in debt and has $5 billion in assets.

Add that to the fact Sirius will owe $175 million in debt this month. The Times reported that such a payment may not be completed by the deadline.

This leaves its stars like Howard Stern, Russo, and Martha Stewart in limbo, waiting to find out what will happen to the sinking ship.

With this tough situation, Russo was a guest of Stern's this morning as the two apparently tried to downplay the problem and suddenly they laced into Russo's former partner Mike Francesa and WFAN. LISTEN TO EXPLOSIVE DISCUSSION.

Francesa tried to avert taking calls all day from callers in support of big Mike. Finally, Francesa addressed the situation at the end of his show. WATCH HERE! And WATCH PART II HERE!

Francesa claims that Russo was lying to Stern about how he was upset that the Mad Dog had better guests during Super Bowl week than he. Francesa also declared to his audience that Russo and any other competitor will never get ratings as good as he.

Brett Favre Retires, Ends Tortured Stay With Jets

Brett Favre has offically called it quits, and this time, it might be for good.

The 18 year veteran and three-time NFL MVP, ended his career by informing the Jets that he was done playing football.

This is the latest in what has been a strange year for Favre. He retired last March in a tearful good bye to the Green Bay Packers, then changed his mind in July, wanting desperately to play again.

The Packers did not want to commit to another year of Favre's "should I or Shouldn't I retire" skits, trading the disgruntled player to a desperate New York Jets team.

Favre got off to a great start in New York. He was welcomed as a hero in New York after the club had to live with the mediocre play of Chad Pennington. However, after an 8-3 start, the Jets fell apart.

Favre threw nine interceptions in his final five games and was drawing the ire of his teammates. The Jets finished 9-7, missing the playoffs, and watched in desmay as Pennington led the Dolphins to the AFC East Title.

Favre was never really welcomed in the Jets clubhouse. Lavernous Coles did everything in his power to make the MVP feel unwelcome by not adjusting to the way Favre played. Late in the season, Coles ripped Favre to the San Francisco media, claiming that a ball machine had more zip on passes than Favre did.

At the end of the season, Thomas Jones and Kerry Rhodes ripped Favre for being too distant from the club and not taking responsibility for his poor play down the stretch.

The Jets have a lot of problems now. They have really no answer at quarterback. Kellen Clemens was underwhelming in his lone season as a starter in 2007; Brett Ratliff has no experience and Eric Ainge is a rookie.

In free agency, the prospects don't look too good. Kerry Collins is a terrible big game quarterback; Jeff Garcia has no arm strength and is a system quarterback; Byron Leftwhich is always getting injured, and Rex Grossman was a disaster for the Chicago Bears.
Will this be Favre's offical good bye? One never knows with Brett. Don't bet against him changing his mind again come June when he finally signs with the Minnesota Vikings, the team he really wanted to be with when the 2008 season started.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

A-Rod's Steroid Scandal Could Open Hall of Fame Door for Other Users

Thank you Alex Rodriguez.

You have found a way to not only make a farce out of baseball, but your antics will eventually make a farce out of the Hall of Fame. You opened a Pandora's Box, letting all the gargoyles and bats, named Barry, Roger, McGwire, and Sammy come flying out with big smiles on their faces. You have given them the hope of regaining their immortality.

Thanks to A-Rod's admission of using steroids early in his career, new hope is given to Clemens, Bonds, and anyone other big name who has used 'Roids, that they may eventually make it to the Hall of Fame.

Why would this be the case?
Because before "using" steroids, A-Rod was a MVP type player averaging 36 homeruns a year from 1996-2000 with the Seattle Mariners. Ever since coming to the Yankees in what A-Rod claims as his "clean" years, Rodriguez has averaged 41.6 homeruns and 123.2 RBI a year.

Therefore, if A-Rod should stay clean for the rest of his career and continue to average 40 homers and 120 RBI a year, he will be the first big name steroid user to enter baseball's shrine of greatness.

With that it will force baseball writers of the present and future to ask themselves this question: Should we vote in Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens too?

Both Clemens and Bonds were heading into Cooperstown long before they started using illegal substances. Before "using" steroids Clemens was a three-time Cy Young Award winner with the Boston Red Sox. In 1986 and 1987 combined, Clemens was 44-13 with an ERA around 2.60. He was the most dominating pitcher in his sport, before some claimed he started using the juice when he went to Toronto and later the Yankees.

That means for 13 years Clemens was possibly clean of Roids. 13 years that were Hall of Fame caliber.

As for Bonds, he was a five tool player with the Pittsburgh Pirates and San Francisco Giants from 1986-1993. He had eight straight seasons of 25 plus doubles. He had 12 straight years of 28 plus stolen bases a year and was a prolific homerun hitter before his obsession with the McGwire/Sosa infamous homerun chase of 1998.

With that some might say that Clemens and Bonds are deserving of Hall of Fame recognition because of what they had accomplised early in their careers. Then again, who is to say that neither player used steroids early in their career? Steroids were not banned from baseball until 1991, and were untested until 2003.

Thus, the McCarthy-like witchhunt has become baseball's steroid problem for the past 15 years. No one knows who has used the juice before testing nor who is still using the juice now that more sophisticated tests have been implemented.
For all we know, Rodriguez could still be injecting himself every evening before taking the field. The only people who know are Rodriguez and his teammates. Too bad Joe Torre is no longer around the Yankee clubhouse; it would be fun to read a book about the steroids that have been passed around the Yankee clubhouse over the past decade.

If Rodriguez does continue to pack up the stats, people will be suspicious for obvious reasons, but if he never tests positive for steroids again, who is to say he is not a Hall of Famer?

Rodriguez is on pace to break Bonds' phony homerun mark and become the next homerun king. He has three MVP's and is young enough to earn one or two more. Eventually, one would think, Rodriguez will win a World Series ring.

He will be in one day, and, thanks to him, whether you hate to admit it or not, Clemens and Bonds will follow.

It is a shame that baseball has come to this, and, just think, the humiliation is only just beginning.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Devils Shutout Struggling Rangers

DEVILS 3
RANGERS 0

If one needed to know the differences between the New Jersey Devils and the New York Rangers right now, you should have watched this game.

The Devils, who have been red hot lately rocking to first in their division and third the Eastern Conference playoffs, shut out the stumbling and bumbling Rangers 3-0 at the Prudential Center in Newark, Monday night.

In the second period, New Jersey opened the scoring as Bobby Holick scored his fourth goal of the season, with assists from Patrick Elias and former Ranger Brendon Shanahan. Later in the period, Zach Parise added his 31st goal of the season with a power play goal to make it 2-0.

Finally in the third period, Parise added one more for good measure. An empty netter made it 3-0 Devils as they rocked the Rock.

Scott Clemmensen got the win, shutting out the Broadway Blue Shirts; Clemmensen recored 27 saves on 27 shots on the evening.

The Devils improve to 34-17-3, while the Rangers fall to 29-20-5. The Rangers have lost five straight games.

A-Rod Admits To Steroid Use

In an attempt to get public opinion back in his favor, Alex "A-Fraud" Rodriguez has admitted to using steroids during his time with the Texas Rangers from 2001 - 2003.

The confession came in an interview with ESPN's Peter Gammons, which is to air Monday Night at 6:00. Funny, considering how A-Rod likes to interrupt important national events like he did during the 2007 World Series, one would think that A-Fraud would want his interview aired at the same time President Barack Obama is to speak to the nation, again, about his economic stimulus package.

Oh well, at least A-Fraud is not that stupid, or more likely, ESPN is that smart.

Still, Rodriguez does not deserve public sympathy. He is a cheater, and no one really knows if Rodriguez has used steroids since 2003, when stricter drug testing was implemented.

Coming Soon...MLB Preview 2009

Spring Training is just five days away and Cohen's Corner Sports will have it covered from Valentine's Day all the way to Opening Day on April 7.

Later this week look for Mets and Yankees previews as they enter camp this weekend. The previews will look closly at the off-season moves for both teams; the needs they have yet to fill, and the players to watch for this spring.

Through the month of March, I will preview every single major league club, as we tick down to the season opener.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Nets Not Welcome In Magic Kingdom

MAGIC 101
NETS 84

A night after blowing out the Denver Nuggets 114-70, the Nets got a taste of their own medicine Sunday night in Orlando, Florida, losing to the Magic 101-84.

The Nets were completely dominated by the Magic from start to finish. The only chance they had was getting to within nine at 89-80 before Orlando's Mickael Pietrus sank a 24 foot three-pointer to all but put the game out of reach with just under four minutes to go.

Orlando grabbed a 32-18 lead in the first quarter, making it quite clear that New Jersey was in for a long night against a top NBA team. It didn't help matters for the Nets that Vince Carter had to miss the game with a sore elbow. READ STORY.

Devon Harris was the lone bright spot for the Nets. Harris had 28 points on 9 for 25 shooting, with 12 assists. Dwight Howard had 30 points and 16 rebounds for the Magic, proving to be a huge thorn in the Nets side all night long. Overall, Orlando shot .48 percent from the field, 68 percent from the free-throw line and 30 percent from three-point land.

The Nets fall to 24-28 on the season.

Knicks Lose At the Buzzer to Blazers

TRAIL BLAZERS 109
KNICKS 108

As if this past week was not enough of a nightmare for the Knicks. Leading 108-105 with only 0:31.9 seconds left in their game against the Portland Trail Blazers the Knicks watched as Travis Outlaw and Brandon Roy ripped out the Knicks heart out on Sunday night.

First Outlaw drilled a 13 foot jumper to cut the Knicks lead to 108-107, forcing New York to call a timeout and make some key substitutions.

But, that was not enough, with just 0:00.1 of a second to go, Roy squeezed through the Knicks defense for the lay up and the win. He got the points, and no foul was called.

It was a long effort lost for the Knicks. They were trailing 36-27 through one quarter, before storming back in the next two quarters to tie the game at 82.

David Lee had a huge night for New York. Lee had 29 points and 11 rebounds on the night, but he can't do it alone. STATS.

Roy had 19 points for Portland, while Greg Oden had 17 points and 12 boards and Outlaw added 23 points off of the bench for the Trail Blazers.

New York continues to sink in the Eastern Confernce, dropping to 21-29 overall.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Another A-Bomb from A-Fraud Rodriguez

It just never gets dull for Alex Rodriguez does it?

The man who seems to be at the center of every controversy and disaster known to man, is at it again. This time A-Rod, or as Joe Torre called him A-Fraud, is indeed a fraud. Rodriguez was caught with his proverbial pants down, after a report surfaced today from Sports Illustrated citing that Rodriguez tested positive for Anabolic Steroids in 2003.

It is not known whether Rodriguez has used steroids since coming to the Yankees in 2004, but this report confirms fears that A-Rod used Roids at some point in his career.


Rodriguez was not cited as a steroids user when the Mitchell Report came out last winter.

This adds to what has been a whacky couple of weeks for A-Rod. Last week, Torre's book came out stating that Rodriguez had a "single white female" relationship with Short Stop Derek Jeter, trying desperately to be like the popular Yankee. The book also said that Rodriguez's teammates called him A-Fraud since he never produced in the clutch.

Rodriguez's stay with the Yankees has been equally checkered. Whether it was chocking in October playoff games, or hanging out with prostitutes in Toronto. Whether it was Rodriguez's messy divorce, or his Kabala/love affair with Madonna, or his public opting out of his Yankee contract in the middle of the 2007 World Series, Rodriguez never seems to do anything right.

The guy should just give up playing baseball and consider living as a hermet, at least than no one will pay any attention to his bone-headed stunts.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Ray Lewis Interested In Jets?

Either Ravens future Hall of Fame Linebacker Ray Lewis means it, or he is really good at pretending to be a sports agent by jacking up his own price tag.

Lewis, who has been the emotional leader of the Balitmore Ravens since their inception in 1996, is a free agent and has said in a story published by the New York Post, that he will not give the Ravens a home team discount. In other words, he will go for the best deal available.

Lewis feels that the Jets are an "attractive" option, since he has a long relationship with Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan. Ryan and Lewis spent eight years together, with Ryan as a defensive assitant and later coordinator. The two of the were apart of the Ravens 2000 World Championship team.

"That relationship by itself is a match, because of the relationship me and Rex have always had. That opportunity by itself looks attractive, seems attractive," Lewis said in an interview on the NFL Network.

If Lewis does become a Jet, he will bring tremendous energy and leadership to a defensive unit that has lacked leadership ever since Brian Cox and Mo Lewis left the orgainization in 2001.
But, before that could happen, the Jets will need Brett Favre to make a decision on his own future. Favre is due $13 million next season if he returns, which puts the Jets way over the salary cap, making it hard for them to go big time for a guy like Lewis. If Favre retires, the Jets could go hard after Lewis.

Keep in mind there are two other linebackers available from that great Ravens defense. Bart Scott and Terrell Suggs are also free agents. Suggs also has a special relationship with Ryan. Ryan talked extensively about how he took Suggs under his wing and made him a Pro Bowler.

Either way the Jets will likely sign one of these players. The Jets current middle linebacker, Eric Barton, who is best known for roughing Drew Brees at the end of a Jets/Chargers playoff game in 2004, is a free agent this year as well. It might be time for the Jets to let Barton walk.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Graves Gets Number Retired

New York Rangers great Adam Graves' number 9 was retired Tuesday night by the Rangers Hockey organization. The event occasioned a huge ceremony for the honoree at Madison Square Garden, joined by family and former teammates.

Graves helped end the Rangers 54 year Stanley Cup drought, as the Blue Shirts beat Vancouver in the 1994 Finals. He played 10 years with New York from 1991-2001. LISTEN TO GRAVES SPEECH!

As for the Rangers current team, they lost 2-1 to Atlanta. The Rangers did not lose ground to the Devils, who lost 5-2 to Washington tonight as well.

Torre Not Bitter & Shocked By Negative Reaction

In an interview with WFAN host Mike Francesa, former Yankees manager Joe Torre spoke up about his recent book The Yankee Years, which has stirred up a lot of controversy over the last week. LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW HERE!

Torre told Francessa that he was suprised by the negative reaction the book has received since it is just an honest portrayal of his time with the Yankees. Torre revealed that he began working with Sports Illustrated's Tom Verducci as early as 2007, long before Torre was fired, on the book deal.
Torre said that he was comfortable with everything the book says and would still have written and published the book even if he were Yankees manager today.

As for the "A-Fraud" reference to Alex Rodriguez, Torre told Francesa that A-Rod puts too much pressure on himself to "be THE guy" to come up with the big hits. A-Fraud was just clubhouse fodder designed to make Rodriguez relax. Torre said that he has tremendous respect for Rodriguez.

Torre also revealed in the interview that both David Wells and Kevin Brown drove him "nuts," but he felt badly for Brown and his awful pitching performances. "There was nothing I could do to help him," Torre told Francesa in reference to Brown.

Torre mentioned that he and Wells never got along, refering to a moment this past season when Wells told Torre that he hated him after Torre invited Wells to a dinner to honor the Yankees 1998 World Championship team this past November. According to Torre, Wells showed up to the dinner anyway.

Torre added that he had no ill will towards anyone in the Yankees front office, and that he never said that GM Brian Cashman betrayed him. "I wasn't sure," Torre told Francesa about Cashman's relationship to him at the end of 2007.

Citi Group & Mets Will Remain Partners

In response to a Wall Street Journal story that stated that Citi Group was looking into the idea of splitting from the Mets because of the company's recent bankruptcy and federal bailout problems; Citi came out today singing a different tune.

Citi and the Mets will remain partners for the forceable future. In December, the Mets came out in defense of Citi after the bank tanked and laid off several employees. On Monday, Citi said that there would be no TARP capital used to finance the new ballpark.

Last week, two U.S. Senators decided to stick their noses into the Mets business. Denis Kucinich (Democrat, Ohio) and Ted Poe (Republican, Texas) criticized the Mets for continuing their partnership with Citi and pushed Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner to move for the destruction of the partnership, creating this recent controversy.

Citi Field is expected to open April 13. Whether the Mets will really keep the name remains to be seen.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Mets Re-Sign Perez

After much debate and frustration, the New York Mets have finally re-signed lefty Oliver Perez to solidify the number four slot in the Mets starting rotation. The contract will pay Perez $36 million over three years.

Perez is a strange case. He pitches extremely well against superior competition, i.e. Yankees, Braves, Phillies, Cardinals, but never pitches well against inferior opponents like the Marlins, and Nationals.

Perez was 10-7 last year with a 4.22 ERA, striking out 180 batters in 194 innings.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

View Some Good Super Bowl Commercials

Here are a few Super Bowl commercials that I really liked during the game. Usually the Super Bowl commericals are terrible, but this year they were, for the most part, very good.

In the first ad, a Doritos commerical, features business people throwing a snowglobe into a vending machine for good luck. View Doritos 1. In the second Doritos commercial, a guy walks down a steet eating chips and sees some interesting things. View Doritos 2.

In the next commercial, NBC and NFL promote the league and NBC's TV show Heroes with the cast taking on some legendary NFL players. View Heroes.

Next, in an ad from Taco Bell, watch a bold, and probaby foolish guy make a move on a girl. It is kind of funny actually. View Taco Bell.

Here is a great Pepsi commerical that shows the soft drinks rise through time. Watch Pepsi.

Here is a funny commerical from The Ladders.com featuring a monster rampaging through a city. Now this monster is not Godzilla. The monster is called X from a movie called The X from Outer Space. It is a Korean rip-off of Godzilla from the 1960's. Watch The Ladders.

Finally, here is a rather poignant commerical from Budweiser. Watch Clydesdales!

NOTE: SOME OF THE COMMERICALS HAD TO BE FIXED, AND HAVE BEEN RESTORED FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE.

Steelers Win Classic Super Bowl

STEELERS 27
CARDINALS 23

Instant classic! In a game that is at the pinnacle of its sport, Super Bowl XLIII did not disappoint, featuring both jubiliation and the gut-wrenching pain of defeat. For a game that was quite dull for the first three quarters with the Steelers holding a commanding 20-7 lead, the fourth quarter captured the attention of America.

The Arizona Cardinals roared back to take a 23-20 lead with 2:58 to go in the game. Yes, the Arizona Cardinals were that close to winning their first ever Super Bowl. With 11:30 to go, the Cards finally put it together. Kurt Warner shook the ice off his arm, and Larry Fitzgerald put on his running shoes for this dramatic finish.

On first down, Warner hit Steve Breaston for a 13 yard gain to the Cards 26 yard line. On the next play, Warner connected with tight end Jeremy Urban for 18 yards to move the ball to the 44 yard line. Later, Warner hit running back J.J. Arington for 22 yards, and the back scooted to the Pittsbrugh 28 yard line. Warner then connected with Fitzgerald who dashed to the Steelers 10, setting up first and goal. The Cards punched it in with Fitzgerald's leaping catch to make it 20-14.

When Pittsburgh got the ball back, the momentum was all gone. Pittsburgh was pinned to their own one yard line with 3:26 to go. The Steelers had to get the ball out of their own end zone, and they failed to do it. On second and 10 at the one, Willie Parker was almost tackled for a safety but just got the ball out of the end zone. Finally, Ben Roethlisberger hit a wide open Santonio Holmes, who made a juggling catch for a first down at the 20. However, the Steelers were called for a hold in the end zone, giving the Cardinals a two-point safety. 20-16 Steelers.

Finally, the Cards took it right to the Steelers. On second down for the Arizona 36, Warner hit a wide open Fitzgerald down the middle of the field. Fitzgerald sprinted right through the Steel Curtain for a 64 yard dash for the touchdown. Cardinals 23-20.

Could the Cardinals actually win the Super Bowl? Unfortunately, the Cards could not exorcise the demons of their past in the final 2:48. A Steeler offense that was dormant from early in the second quarter finally woke up. Roethlisberger hit Holmes for 13 to Pittsburgh 39. On the next play, Roethlishberger hit Nate Washington for 11 more to mid-field. With the clock ticking down, Roethlisberger found Holmes streaking down the sideline for a 40 yard gain to the Cardinals five yard line.

Two plays later, Roethlisberger hit Holmes at the edge of the end zone for the touchdown! Holmes kept his two feet in bounds, solidifying the lead and the game.

The Cards got one more shot, but Warner was strip-sacked, and the Steelers recovered the fumble at mid-field with five seconds left to play.

The win is the sixth title for the Steelers in their brilliant history. Holmes was named the MVP for his night of nine catches for 131 yards and a TD. As for the Cards, they played extremely hard. They did everything in their power to win the game, and even out-played Pittsburgh for a good portion of Sunday's contest; however, the game is never over until the fat lady sings, and she was waving a Steelers Terrible Towel.