No gift for the Sixers right now could be greater than the gift of not
having to play basketball for a little while. (Well, getting the
Funny-Looking Kid With the Big Hair back and healthy and with a newfound
lust for life would be nice too, but Christmas is still at least a
couple months away.) They'll get to enjoy that all-too-rare privilege
soon enough, as All-Star Weekend will grant all of them but Jrue Holiday
a week free of their depressing professional responsibilities, but
first they have to go through the motions of a game in Milwaukee,
against the 25-25 Bucks.
Ostensibly, with the Sixers just three
games behind the Bucks for the eighth spot in the East, this should be
an "important game" with "playoff implications" that "people will
watch." But we're not really fooling anybody here—the Bucks are probably
about as worried about the Sixers catching them with no Thad, J-Rich or
Bynum as the Sixers are interested in making a legitimate attempt to
catch them and then get slaughtered by the Heat in the first round,
which is to say, not considerably. At the very least, we'll get to see
some more of Arnett Moultrie, who has been just about the only reason to
watch this team since Thad went down, showing energy and IQ and looking
something like a real basketball player. Not sure he's worth the
first-rounder we gave up for him just yet, but it's good to know we
didn't just completely light that thing on fire.
8:00 tip from the Bradley Center. Have fun in Houston, Jrue. Don't drink the purple stuff.
COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. -- Mike Piazza has been inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Selected by the Dodgers in the 62nd round of the 1988 amateur draft with the 1,390th pick, ahead of only five other players, Piazza is the lowest-drafted player to reach the Hall of Fame. He made it in on his fourth try.
Piazza played 16 years with five teams and hit 427 home runs, including a major-league record 396 as a catcher. A 12-time All-Star, Piazza won 10 Silver Slugger Awards and finished in the top five in MVP voting four times.
Perhaps even more impressive, Piazza had six seasons with at least 30 home runs, 100 RBIs and a .300 batting average. All other catchers in baseball history combined have posted nine such seasons.
COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. -- Ken Griffey Jr. has been inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Griffey, the first No. 1 draft pick to be selected for enshrinement, played 22 big-league seasons with the Mariners, Reds and White Sox and was selected on a record 99.32 percent of ballots cast, an affirmation of sorts for his clean performance during baseball's so-called Steroids Era.
A 13-time All-Star selection and 10-time Gold Glove Award winner, Griffey hit 630 home runs, sixth all-time, and drove in 1,836 runs.
Griffey also was the American League MVP in 1997, drove in at least 100 runs in eight seasons, and won seven Silver Slugger Awards.
In the 1995 ALDS, he became just the second player in major league history to hit five home runs in a postseason series.
The Eagles are reportedly bringing back a familiar face at quarterback, and no, it's not Tim Tebow.
The team will re-sign quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson, according to ESPN's Adam Caplan.
With the addition, the current roster will be capped out at 90 after the reported signings of former Villanova LB Don Cherry and Alabama S Nick Perry go through (see story).
The Eagles first signed Bethel-Thompson in February to pair with Mark Sanchez at the lone quarterback on the roster. A lot has changed since then, with the team re-signing Sam Bradford and drafting Carson Wentz. Bethel-Thompson was then cut by the Eagles in May.
Bethel-Thompson has been in the NFL since 2011, after going undrafted out of Sacramento State. The 6-foot-4, 230 pounder has spent time with the Dolphins, the Vikings twice, Patriots and the 49ers three times. He has never played in a game.
It'll be an uphill battle for the 27-year-old to make the roster with the quarterback position locked up with Bradford, Chase Daniel and Wentz.