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Packers announce Hall of Fame QB Bart Starr dies at age 85

Green Bay Packers legend and NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Bart Starr has passed away at the age of 85, the franchise announced on Sunday. “Maybe the most popular player in Packers history, Starr will be eulogized for being a consummate professional, a Good
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Packers announce Hall of Fame QB Bart Starr dies at age 85

Green Bay Packers legend and NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Bart Starr has passed away at the age of 85, the franchise announced on Sunday. “Maybe the most popular player in Packers history, Starr will be eulogized for being a consummate professional, a Good Samaritan and an exemplary role model,” the team said in a statement. Starr played in the NFL from 1956-1971, and played only for the Packers during his legendary career. The former 17th-round draft pick out of Alabama finished his career with 24,718 passing yards and 152 touchdowns, earning four Pro Bowl appearances and the 1966 MVP trophy.  He also led the Packers to five championships in the span of a decade, winning two Super Bowls while scoring one of the league’s most famous touchdowns in the Ice Bowl. Starr also coached the Packers from 1972-1983, going 56-72-3.

Top matchups for Raptors-Warriors 2019 NBA Finals

The Toronto Raptors can stay in Canada and prepare for Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Thursday after an exhilarating Game 6 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference finals on Saturday night. Despite having home-court advantage against the Gold
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Top matchups for Raptors-Warriors 2019 NBA Finals

The Toronto Raptors can stay in Canada and prepare for Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Thursday after an exhilarating Game 6 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference finals on Saturday night. Despite having home-court advantage against the Golden State Warriors, Toronto finds itself as a major underdog. Meanwhile, the two-time defending champs will be without Kevin Durant for at least the start of the series. Here, we look at the top-five individual matchups for what should be a great championship round. Kevon Looney vs. Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka  There’s a chance the Warriors' DeMarcus Cousins will play early in this series after being out since Round 1 with an injury. Even then, we fully expect Warriors head coach Steve Kerr to give Looney more minutes. After averaging 10.8 points and 6.2 rebounds over the past five games, he’s more than earned it. The Warriors are also a combined plus-24 with Looney on the court during that span. Looney is an interesting matchup against Gasol and Ibaka in t

David Price leaves start in first inning after 15 pitches

In a crucial series against the Houston Astros, the Boston Red Sox are now left holding their breath. Starting pitcher David Price exited Saturday’s game in the first inning after facing three batters. Price retired the first two batters he faced, but conce
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

David Price leaves start in first inning after 15 pitches

In a crucial series against the Houston Astros, the Boston Red Sox are now left holding their breath. Starting pitcher David Price exited Saturday’s game in the first inning after facing three batters. Price retired the first two batters he faced, but concern was raised immediately after his fastball topped out at 90 mph. It’s a significant drop from Price’s average fastball velocity at 92 mph. Boston’s manager Alex Cora quickly went out to the mound without a trainer after Michael Brantley’s single and Price was then immediately pulled from the game. The 33-year-old southpaw has been extremely reliable for Boston this season with a 3.29 ERA, 1.07 WHIP and 46 strikeouts in seven starts. While the Red Sox likely won’t provide an update on Price’s status until later in the game and a full update might take even longer, there has to be significant concern in Boston.

Twins reportedly could have interest in reliever Craig Kimbrel

As the Minnesota Twins continue to surge in the standings behind baseball's highest-scoring lineup, the front office could be looking to make a big addition to the Twins' bullpen. According to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, Minnesota is among the contenders
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Twins reportedly could have interest in reliever Craig Kimbrel

As the Minnesota Twins continue to surge in the standings behind baseball's highest-scoring lineup, the front office could be looking to make a big addition to the Twins' bullpen. According to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, Minnesota is among the contenders that could have interest in signing All-Star closer Craig Kimbrel after midnight EST on June 2. The specific deadline would allow Kimbrel and fellow free-agent pitcher Dallas Keuchel to be removed from ties to a loss of draft-pick compensation for teams and further open up their market for bidders. Kimbrel would be an excellent addition for Minnesota as it looks for ways to further establish itself as a World Series contender this season. The Twins (34-16) entered play on Saturday with a collective 4.22 ERA from their bullpen, which ranks far behind fellow A.L. contenders like the Tampa Bay Rays, Houston Astros, Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees. Adding Kimbrel would add tremendous flexibility to Minnesota’s bullpen, with the All-Star closer immediately

Warriors’ Andre Iguodala might have just hinted at retirement

Golden State Warriors veteran and former NBA Finals MVP Andre Iguodala is looking to make it back for Game 1 of the championship round on Thursday. Iggy missed the Warriors’ Game 4 win over the Portland Trail Blazers in the Western Conference Finals with a
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Warriors’ Andre Iguodala might have just hinted at retirement

Golden State Warriors veteran and former NBA Finals MVP Andre Iguodala is looking to make it back for Game 1 of the championship round on Thursday. Iggy missed the Warriors’ Game 4 win over the Portland Trail Blazers in the Western Conference Finals with a left calf injury. He’s expected to go in Game 1 against either Toronto or Milwaukee. In talking about his injury and more following practice on Saturday, Iguodala might have very well hinted at retirement after the Finals end. pic.twitter.com/I8GRJhgga0— 95.7 The Game (@957thegame) May 25, 2019 “My career is almost over. I’m about to be done playing anyway.” When asked if he’s looking at signing another contract, Iggy didn’t answer one way or another. He did note just how long the past five seasons have been for him and his teammates. After all, Golden State is the first team in more than half a century to earn five consecutive trips to the NBA Finals. With Iguodala now 35 years old, enough might be enough for him. He is set to earn north of $17 million ne

Top Michigan QB commit calls out Ohio State

J.J. McCarthy grew up a fan of the Ohio State Buckeyes. All the quarterback ever wanted was to head to Columbus and play football for the program. That’s changed. “I used to love them (Ohio State),” McCarthy said, via The Athletic’s Ari Wasserman. “
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Top Michigan QB commit calls out Ohio State

J.J. McCarthy grew up a fan of the Ohio State Buckeyes. All the quarterback ever wanted was to head to Columbus and play football for the program. That’s changed. “I used to love them (Ohio State),” McCarthy said, via The Athletic’s Ari Wasserman. “Now I want to kill them.” Why the change of heart? Well, it’s rather simple. Two weeks after committing to Michigan, McCarthy notes that Ohio State head coach Ryan Day and his staff lied to him about their plans for the 2021 recruiting class. “Coach Day told me he wasn’t going to take (a 2021 quarterback) until the end of summer or anything like that because he wanted to make sure everything was all good, so I didn’t really worry about all that during my visit,” McCarthy said. “But I didn’t get that feeling when I was there. I really didn’t, with all the coaches there and how they interacted with us, I didn’t feel the big family tradition part of it. It was either you’re good at football or you’re over here. That’s what I felt.” Just a short while after his visit,

What we learned from Bucks-Raptors Game 6

The Milwaukee Bucks were in must-win mode on the road in Toronto in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Raptors. A loss here would signify the end to an otherwise magical season in Wisconsin. Knowing full well they were playing with their back
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

What we learned from Bucks-Raptors Game 6

The Milwaukee Bucks were in must-win mode on the road in Toronto in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Raptors. A loss here would signify the end to an otherwise magical season in Wisconsin. Knowing full well they were playing with their backs to the wall, the Bucks came out with a flurry and took a 13-point lead into the second quarter. Relying on the hot shooting of Fred VanVleet, Toronto made it a game heading into the half. It was down just seven after being 15 points behind Milwaukee early in the second. This is pretty much where the game changed. Milwaukee had opened up another double-digit lead in the third quarter before Toronto rallied big time to take the game and the series by the score of 100-94. Here’s what we learned from a franchise-altering win that now pits the Raptors against the two-time defending champion Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals. Raptors’ lack of urgency hurt early One would think that a team on the brink of the NBA Finals would show a sense of urgency in

Athletics designate 17-year vet Fernando Rodney after ERA balloons to 9.42

The Oakland Athletics have designated veteran reliever Fernando Rodney for assignment, their PR department announced. Wei-Chung Wang’s contract has been selected from Triple-A Las Vegas in a corresponding move. This could spell the end of the road for 42-
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Athletics designate 17-year vet Fernando Rodney after ERA balloons to 9.42

The Oakland Athletics have designated veteran reliever Fernando Rodney for assignment, their PR department announced. Wei-Chung Wang’s contract has been selected from Triple-A Las Vegas in a corresponding move. This could spell the end of the road for 42-year-old Rodney, whose days of slinging arrows may be numbered after a 9.42 ERA in 17 appearances. Still, given the state of bullpens around the league, it would not be a shock to see Rodney hitch his cart to a different horse for another go-round. His 5.46 FIP isn’t all that far off the 4.52 mark he chalked up last season, and he’s striking out batters at just a slightly lower rate. On the flip side, his velocity is down a full mph, and his walk rate is up to 17.1 BB%, all of which and more has led to an ugly -0.6 rWAR mark on the year. Rodney debuted as a 25-year-old way back in 2002 for the Tigers. He has twice led the league in games finished, while he took home the saves title with 48 for the Mariners as a 37-year-old. On the whole, he has appeared in 9

Watch: Giants’ Kevin Pillar with catch of the MLB season

San Francisco Giants outfielder Kevin Pillar has arguably been the team’s best player since they acquired him from the Toronto Blue Jays in a trade earlier this season. He’s hitting pretty well at a pitcher-friendly park in San Francisco. Pillar has also
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Watch: Giants’ Kevin Pillar with catch of the MLB season

San Francisco Giants outfielder Kevin Pillar has arguably been the team’s best player since they acquired him from the Toronto Blue Jays in a trade earlier this season. He’s hitting pretty well at a pitcher-friendly park in San Francisco. Pillar has also flashed his glove big time for the Giants. The Arizona Diamondbacks and first baseman Kevin Cron found this out the hard way early in Saturday’s game. Just check out this diving catch from Pillar that saved at least one run. Not only did Pillar go all out making the catch, he showed off his arm for a double play to end the inning. That might very well be the play of the MLB season thus far. You simply don’t see this on a daily basis. Pillar is certainly making an argument for one of the NL’s Gold Gloves from the outfield position. Let’s hope he’s at least recognized.

Burning questions for Bucks-Raptors Game 6

The Toronto Raptors and Milwaukee Bucks will battle Saturday night in a huge Eastern Conference finals game in Toronto. Game details: Here’s a look at the start time, television information, and odds for tonight’s Game 6. When: 8:30 p.m. EST Where: Scotia
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Burning questions for Bucks-Raptors Game 6

The Toronto Raptors and Milwaukee Bucks will battle Saturday night in a huge Eastern Conference finals game in Toronto. Game details: Here’s a look at the start time, television information, and odds for tonight’s Game 6. When: 8:30 p.m. EST Where: Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, Canada TV: TNT Betting Line: Milwaukee -2.5/ 212.5 points The big picture: The Raptors have an opportunity to clinch their first trip to the NBA Finals with a victory Saturday night. On the other side, the Bucks hops to end a three-game losing streak and send this one back to Wisconsin for Game 7. Can Giannis Antetokounmpo rebound?  This question is twofold. We’re openly wondering if Gannis’ ankle is good after he tweaked it late in Game 5. It forced the MVP candidate to sit out a couple plays before returning. There are some who think Antetokounmpo — who has played a lot of minutes — was more winded than anything else. In no way does this excuse the lackluster performance we’ve seen from the Greek Freak over the past three games. He has

George Springer leaves game with hamstring injury, will likely head to IL

Star Astros outfielder George Springer left Friday night's game with a left hamstring injury, manager A.J. Hinch told reporters including MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart. Springer said he’s not sure of the outlook, but was obviously frustrated with the situati
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

George Springer leaves game with hamstring injury, will likely head to IL

Star Astros outfielder George Springer left Friday night's game with a left hamstring injury, manager A.J. Hinch told reporters including MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart. Springer said he’s not sure of the outlook, but was obviously frustrated with the situation in his comments. A formal assessment of the injury has not yet been obtained, but it seems a trip to the injured list is all but inevitable. Hinch made clear that the organization is not anticipating good news when Springer goes in for a full evaluation. The skipper explained that he is “not looking forward to the diagnosis, to be honest,” adding that the situation “doesn’t look very good.” Springer kept the door open to a more promising result, saying he’s “hoping for some good news,” though it didn’t seem as if he’s terribly optimistic. He had been nursing a back injury but was deemed good to go on Friday. As he put it, it “sucks” to have suffered a new malady on the heels of four missed contests. It goes without saying that Springer is a key cog for the

Stephen Curry takes shots at critics of Kevin Durant, Warriors

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry was feeling especially feisty during a Q&A session Friday as his team prepares for a fifth consecutive NBA Finals appearance. Following practice, Curry took time to answer questions from the media. The conversation qu
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Stephen Curry takes shots at critics of Kevin Durant, Warriors

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry was feeling especially feisty during a Q&A session Friday as his team prepares for a fifth consecutive NBA Finals appearance. Following practice, Curry took time to answer questions from the media. The conversation quickly turned to teammate Kevin Durant’s pending status as a free agent. “I feel like for the last three years everybody has taken their shots at trying to nitpick or break us down, or drive a wedge in our team chemistry and togetherness,” Curry said, via Ron Kroichick of the San Francisco Chronicle. “This year, it’s been amplified even more with (Durant’s) free-agency stuff. Nobody can say anything without it getting scrutinized or criticized.” This has been the talking point about Golden State, even more so than the Warriors becoming the first team in more than a half century to make five consecutive NBA Finals trips. Some of that has to do with Durant’s unwillingness to commit to the Warriors like he has done each of the past two seasons. However,

Stop shaming NFL players for missing 'voluntary' OTAs

Voluntary organized team activities (OTAs) have commenced in the NFL. I include “voluntary” because the word seems to have lost its meaning with many football fans, as well with some in the media. You can’t go a day this time of year without reading a s
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Stop shaming NFL players for missing 'voluntary' OTAs

Voluntary organized team activities (OTAs) have commenced in the NFL. I include “voluntary” because the word seems to have lost its meaning with many football fans, as well with some in the media. You can’t go a day this time of year without reading a story about a star player skipping OTAs, followed by a sort of shaming from various corners of the football world. So far, Odell Beckham Jr. (Browns), Le’Veon Bell (Jets) and Antonio Brown (Raiders) have received the treatment. Talk to any beat writer, though, and they’ll tell you that “football in shorts” isn’t an activity from which teams draw significant conclusions — or any conclusions. The fact OTAs are voluntary should alone answer any question regarding their importance. I say “should” because the years-long obsession with OTAs by militaristic NFL types like Tom Coughlin has infected fans everywhere.  Absent players are referred to as “NO-SHOWS” in breathless headlines, or ripped in hot takes from the talk show crowd. The negativity is palpable. Underper

NBA Draft analysis: 10 non-BCS prospects to watch

Yardbarker NBA Draft analyst Brett Koremenos offers assessments of prospects and more leading into the draft on June 20.  Big-name stars from the power conference schools tend to monopolize attention during the college basketball season. Players from smalle
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

NBA Draft analysis: 10 non-BCS prospects to watch

Yardbarker NBA Draft analyst Brett Koremenos offers assessments of prospects and more leading into the draft on June 20.  Big-name stars from the power conference schools tend to monopolize attention during the college basketball season. Players from smaller conferences generally get lost in the shuffle -- with the exception this season, of course, of the transcendent Ja Morant of Murray State. Some of the non-BCS players below are included in mock drafts, but most are off the radar for most fans. Although most won't get drafted, don't be surprised if several make an NBA roster. Here the 10 best non-BCS school NBA Draft prospects:  John Konchar | 6-5 guard, Indiana University -- Purdue University Fort Wayne Projected draft position: Undrafted.  The first of two Summit League players on this list, Konchar is gaining momentum as the draft approaches. He is perhaps the most versatile offensive player on this list. He combines point guard skills (5.4 assists in 2018-19) with rebounding (8.5) and efficient scorin

One-on-One: Examining MLB's overachievers (Yankees!), underachievers

Yardbarker MLB writers Demetrius Bell and Matt Whitener address the hottest issues in baseball. This week's topics: the first-place Yankees, surprisingly good Twins, suprisingly bad Nats and more. (Stats through Wednesday's games.) Whitener: The Yankees have
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

One-on-One: Examining MLB's overachievers (Yankees!), underachievers

Yardbarker MLB writers Demetrius Bell and Matt Whitener address the hottest issues in baseball. This week's topics: the first-place Yankees, surprisingly good Twins, suprisingly bad Nats and more. (Stats through Wednesday's games.) Whitener: The Yankees have gone 14-5 in May and risen to the top of the American League East despite battling injuries. Could they have the AL's best record by the All-Star break? Bell: Absolutely, although the Astros and Twins will have something to say about that. New York was my pick to win the AL East this year, and once the Yankees are fully healthy, the division will be theirs to lose. The Red Sox have yet to match the level they were playing at last season, and New York has already won four of six against the Rays.  Whitener: It's weird to think about the Yankees being overachievers, but that’s exactly what they have been. They have $91.6 million worth of inactive, injured talent. That figure bests the entire payroll of six other MLB teams. But despite the injuries, the Yan

10 NFL Comeback Player of the Year candidates

The NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award is given to the player who has shown «perseverance in overcoming adversity, in the form of not being in the NFL the previous year, a severe injury or simply poor performance.» Here are 10 candidates who ar
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

10 NFL Comeback Player of the Year candidates

The NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award is given to the player who has shown «perseverance in overcoming adversity, in the form of not being in the NFL the previous year, a severe injury or simply poor performance.» Here are 10 candidates who are looking to rebound from their 2018 seasons. Le'Veon Bell, RB, Jets Bell's absence last year was of his own making after holding out for a new contract in Pittsburgh. He found that new contract with the Jets this offseason, and while Adam Gase might not be thrilled with the price tag, there's little doubt Bell will see his fair share of touches in his new digs. He finished 2017 as an All-Pro with more than 1,900 yards from scrimmage and is a nice bet to bounce back at age 27. Leonard Fournette, RB, Jaguars Fournette's 2017 rookie season wasn't great by every measure, but he did have more than 1,000 yards rushing and nine touchdowns. He played only eight games last year due to injuries and a one-game suspension and also averaged just 3.3 yards per carry. The Jaguars

Milwaukee choked: What we learned from Raptors-Bucks Game 5

Both the Toronto Raptors and Milwaukee Bucks knew that Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals Thursday night was a big one. The winner would go up 3-2 with an opportunity to close this series out Saturday. In the end, Toronto pulled off an amazing road comeb
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Milwaukee choked: What we learned from Raptors-Bucks Game 5

Both the Toronto Raptors and Milwaukee Bucks knew that Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals Thursday night was a big one. The winner would go up 3-2 with an opportunity to close this series out Saturday. In the end, Toronto pulled off an amazing road comeback in Milwaukee. Led by Kawhi Leonard, the team came out on top by the score of 105-99. The Raptors can now earn a trip to the NBA Finals with a win this weekend. On the other hand, Milwaukee choked this game away in front of its home crowd. Giannis Antetokounmpo didn’t have his head in the game from the start. He struggled and eventually departed after a phantom injury late in the fourth quarter only to return to irrelevance a few plays later. Here’s what we learned from Toronto’s stirring and potentially franchise-altering Game 5 win over Milwaukee in the Eastern Conference Finals. Bucks couldn’t maintain momentum Up by 10 after the first quarter, it seemed like the Bucks were prepared to build off that in front of their home crowd. Instead, Giannis a

James Harden, Chris Paul had verbal exchange after elimination

The Houston Rockets’ season ended in disappointment a few weeks ago with a humbling loss to the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference semifinals. There now comes word that tensions brewing between James Harden and Chris Paul came to a head as the
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

James Harden, Chris Paul had verbal exchange after elimination

The Houston Rockets’ season ended in disappointment a few weeks ago with a humbling loss to the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference semifinals. There now comes word that tensions brewing between James Harden and Chris Paul came to a head as the team’s quest for an appearance in the NBA Finals was extinguished by the Warriors. The Athletic’s Shams Charania details in a recent piece how Harden and Paul had a heated verbal exchange following the team’s postseason-ending Game 6 loss. “But Harden and Paul had tense moments with one another throughout Game 6, culminating in a verbal back-and-forth postgame that went into the locker room, sources with knowledge of the situation told The Athletic,” Charania writes . “Sources said the verbal exchange between Harden and Paul was regarding the ball distribution throughout Game 6. By the time the remainder of the locker room was ready to talk, Paul and Harden had gone their separate ways, with Paul swiftly making his way to the postgame podium. The Rockets d

Adam Gase addresses report that he did not want Jets to sign Le'Veon Bell

New York Jets head coach Adam Gase says he was not against the team giving Le’Veon Bell a massive contract in free agency. After the Jets fired former general manager Mike Maccagnan, there were reports that Gase wanted him out and disagreed with a number o
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Adam Gase addresses report that he did not want Jets to sign Le'Veon Bell

New York Jets head coach Adam Gase says he was not against the team giving Le’Veon Bell a massive contract in free agency. After the Jets fired former general manager Mike Maccagnan, there were reports that Gase wanted him out and disagreed with a number of moves Maccagnan made, one of them being the decision to sign Bell. On Thursday, Gase tried to put some of that talk to rest. Gase also addressed the speculation that the Jets could try to trade Bell now that Maccagnan is gone. The Jets have already paid Bell a signing bonus and a bunch of guaranteed money, so trading him was never really an option. That doesn’t mean Gase agreed with signing him to a huge contract. If what was reported about the way Gase acted during the draft was accurate, the issues between him and Maccagnan had to do with a lot more than just the Bell signing. Even if Gase thinks the money would have been better spent elsewhere, he might as well get the most out of Bell while he has him.

Kristaps Porzingis cleared by Mavs after investigation into fight in Latvia

The Dallas Mavericks have cleared Kristaps Porzingis of any wrongdoing after an investigation into his role in a bar fight earlier this month in the 23-year-old’s native Latvia, according to a report from The Dallas Morning News . The Mavericks spoke extens
Yardbarker: Rumors and Gossip

Kristaps Porzingis cleared by Mavs after investigation into fight in Latvia

The Dallas Mavericks have cleared Kristaps Porzingis of any wrongdoing after an investigation into his role in a bar fight earlier this month in the 23-year-old’s native Latvia, according to a report from The Dallas Morning News . The Mavericks spoke extensively with Porzingis — who returned to Dallas earlier this week — during the investigation into the incident. The team reportedly came away with the conclusion that the superstar was simply the victim of being “in the wrong place at the wrong time.” The brawl occurred on May 12 outside a bar in Porzingis’ hometown of Liepaja, Latvia. Footage ultimately surfaced showing Porzingis bloodied and angry after he was allegedly jumped by several suspected Russian gang members who were said to be upset that Porzingis “changed teams” last season, a reference to the trade the shipped him from the Knicks to the Mavs. Subsequent reporting speculated Porzingis may have broken a hand during the fight, but a source told The Dallas Morning News that is not the case and bot

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