Monthly Archives: February 2018

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J.J. Barea fires back after John Wall calls him ‘a little midget’

J.J. Barea won’t be gifted a Rolex watch from John Wall anytime soon.

An on-court confrontation between Barea and Wall was just a warm-up act Monday night. Things really got rolling when the veteran point guards exchanged trash talk via the media after Barea’s Dallas Mavericks cruised to a 98-75 rout of Wall’s Washington Wizards.

Wall, who gave his teammates Rolexes as Christmas gifts this season, has publicly acknowledged chemistry issues with backcourt partner Bradley Beal in the past. Barea’s poke at Wall’s popularity with his teammates also came the day after a Washington Post story about a Wizards team meeting that didn’t go well.

A couple guys took it the negative way, and it hurt our team, Wall told the Washington Post. Instead of taking it in a positive way like we did in the past and using it to build our team up, it kind of set us back a little bit.

The confrontation between Barea and Wall occurred after Barea pushed off against Washington’s Kelly Oubre Jr., getting called for an offensive foul with 7:42 remaining. Wall hit Barea on the arm while attempting to block his shot attempt after the whistle.

Milwaukee’s offer was first reported Sunday by Yahoo! Japan. Darvish, arguably the best pitcher in this year’s free-agent market, retweeted Yahoo! Japan’s report later Sunday.

Darvish, who helped the Dodgers reach the World Series last season, is one of several high-profile free agents who remain unsigned with spring training about a month away. The Japanese ace also has been linked to the Rangers, Cubs, Yankees, Twins and Astros this offseason.

A source told ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick that Darvish has a five-year offer on the table, although it is unclear whether that offer is from the Brewers or another team. The specifics of Milwaukee’s offer to Darvish were not clear as of Monday afternoon.

The Brewers, who went 86-76 last season and fell one game short of a wild-card spot, already have signed veteran starters Jhoulys Chacin and Yovani Gallardo this offseason.

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Bucks fire coach Jason Kidd despite Giannis Antetokounmpo’s support

The Milwaukee Bucks fired head coach Jason Kidd on Monday, the team announced.

Kidd told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne that Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo called him about 15 minutes before Kidd was officially notified he’d been fired by the Bucks and offered to help save his job.

Horst then released a letter to fans, in which he said the decision to fire Kidd was made with the unanimous support of ownership.

Many factors went into this decision, the letter continued, but ultimately we decided that a fresh approach and a change in leadership are needed to continue elevating our team to the next level and bringing us closer to our goal of winning championships. We believe that making this change now is important for the organization and gives our players the best chance to reach their full potential this season and beyond.

Despite a talented roster that features Antetokounmpo and recent trade acquisition Eric Bledsoe, the Bucks are 23-22 and currently are the No. 8 seed in the Eastern Conference.

I was just hooping today, Clarkson said. I was comfortable, not thinking too much.

They just didn’t go in, Oladipo said. We were getting open looks, too, and they weren’t going in. It’s part of the game.

Pacers: Three former UCLA players returned to Los Angeles with Indiana, including two rookies making their first appearances as pros: forward TJ Leaf (18th overall draft pick) and C Ike Anigbogu (47th). Both have struggled to earn playing time, while Collison has become a fixture at point guard. … C Myles Turner missed his sixth consecutive game with a strained right elbow.

Lakers: Maybe it’s Staples Center. The Lakers played without three regulars in Ball (knee), F Brandon Ingram (ankle) and G Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (strained Achilles). So all five players on the court for the opening tip were not typically starters. Their arena-mates, the Clippers, have been playing down at least three starters for most of the season.

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Michael Pineda introduced to Twins fans, still recovering from Tommy John surgery

Michael Pineda is hard to miss, even when he’s not throwing 95 mph fastballs. The Minnesota Twins won’t witness any of those heaters for a while, but they’re still pleased to have the 6-foot-7 right-hander in-house until he’s ready.

Pineda was introduced to his new fans at Twins Fest on Saturday after agreeing to a $10 million, two-year deal last month, though he’s still recovering from Tommy John surgery and is unlikely to pitch again until at least late this season.

Between there, it’s a lot of things happen, so you never know, Pineda said. I want to just prepare and work hard for go back as soon as I can.

Pineda was an All-Star as a rookie for the Seattle Mariners in 2011, showing signs of immense potential with a 3.74 ERA and 173 strikeouts in 171 innings as a 22-year-old. He was traded to New York in the offseason but didn’t pitch in pinstripes until 2014 because of his shoulder.

His only full season was in 2016, when he made a career-high 32 starts, but he was 6-12 with a career-high 4.82 ERA.

Pineda was on the way to perhaps his best season last year before the elbow injury. He was 8-4 with a 4.39 ERA and 92 strikeouts in 96 1/3 innings.

Jackson, who will turn 31 on Feb. 1, played in 85 games last season for the Cleveland Indians, providing them some outfield depth and insurance for All-Star Michael Brantley, who missed more than seven weeks because of a bothersome ankle injury. Jackson batted .318 with seven homers, 35 RBIs, three stolen bases and a .869 OPS last season for the American League Central champions.

Jackson played only 54 games for the Chicago White Sox in 2016. Before that, he played in 2015 for the Seattle Mariners and the Chicago Cubs, batting .267 with nine homers and 48 RBIs in 136 games. He played for the Detroit Tigers for four-plus seasons, before he was traded to Seattle in a multiteam 2014 deadline deal that moved ace David Price from the Tampa Bay Rays to Detroit.

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