General manager Sam Presti deserves a lot of credit for getting this done.

So the team needed someone who could start at the 4 position next to newly acquired Paul George. In Patterson, they get exactly that. His per-36 averages of 10 points, six rebounds and two assists might not jump off the page, but he provides exactly the type of production that NBA teams look for out of low-usage players. He hit 37 percent of his 3s in over three years in Toronto, plus provides a lot of defensive versatility as a 4-man who can guard both in the post and out on the perimeter.

And this contract is at an absolute bargain basement level. The Thunder are likely using their taxpayer mid-level exception here to get Patterson for $5.192 million to start, making the actual total dollar figure on the contract $16,354,800. To get a 28-year-old starter for right around $5 million per season is a steal in this marketplace, and they’re paying for what will essentially the last of his prime years.
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Ricardo Allen Youth Jersey General manager Sam Presti deserves a lot of credit for getting this done.

For the second straight year, the Celtics have made a massive splash in free agency. This time, the Celtics get Gordon Hayward from Utah on what will ostensibly be a three-year contract that takes him to his age 30 season. Those three years will take him past his 10th year in the NBA, qualifying him for the maximum contract any NBA player is entitled to at 35 percent of the salary cap.

Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant had been struggling to live up to the MVP-winning pace he set last year, but he found his swing in a 6-1 win over the Pirates. Bryant went 4 for 5 with two home runs (18) and a triple. He became the first Cubs player to jack two home runs and record a triple since Todd Walker in 2004.

Richard Sherman on NBA-NFL salary differences: ‘Players have to be willing to strike’

Elite Robert Blanton Jersey Many players, from Sammy Watkins to Emmanuel Sanders, have voiced their displeasure about their NFL salaries compared to players in the NBA and MLB.

With NBA free agency in its first month, several six-figure contracts have made headlines. There is one thing both NBA and MLB players have in common — they have gone on strike in past seasons.
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If we want, as the NFL, as a union, to get anything done, players have to be willing to strike. That’s the thing that guys need to 100-percent realize, Sherman said at the ESPYs Wednesday.

I told him before we came out here that my wife and I were trying to have a baby, and he told Karla something on a plane ride somewhere … and it worked, Reuter said. My daughter just turned 17 a little bit ago. So thanks for that too, B.

Bonds and the audience erupted in laughter. So naturally, reporters later asked Bonds what exactly he’d said to Karla Reuter that worked. We’ll let Bonds explain the process in detail in this bizarrely entertaining interview.

I was just joking, Bonds said. But I did it and it worked for me and I said, ‘Go ahead, you try it.’

Almost 1,000 fans attended the 40-minute ceremony honoring baseball’s all-time home run king. Several of Bonds former teammates attended, as did Giants greats Willie McCovey and Willie Mays, Bonds godfather.

I love you guys so much, Bonds said in addressing the crowd (via the Washington Post). I’ve always made the statement when people say, How are your fans in San Francisco?’ I say I never had any fans, I’ve always had family because I was raised here.’ I just want to thank you for giving me opportunity to entertain the city that has embraced me and my family for so many years.

Nikola Jokic and Mike Miller have the NBA’s most underrated friendship

Nikola Jokic played himself into the conversation as the best young player in the NBA this season. It may have even been fair to call the Nuggets’ 21-year-old big man an All-Star snub. He finished the season averaging 16.7 points, 9.8 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game.

Lonzo Ball’s basketball future is up to him. His off-court financial future is in his father’s hands, and it’s risky. He’s alienating lots of people. But all things considered, he could have been the very picture of decorum in all his public dealings, and plenty would still resent him for wanting his family, instead of the Knight or Plank families, to benefit from Lonzo’s talent.

Know this, though: When last month he was called “the worst thing to happen to basketball in the last hundred years,” it wasn’t just because he gave bat-stuff crazy interviews. The man who said it, George Raveling, is both a top Nike executive and a former college basketball coach.

Anyone who spooks both the shoe industry and the amateur sports cartel that much can’t be all bad.

Al-Farouq Aminu ranked in the top 10 in postseason scoring among small forwards, averaging a dozer points per night in four games against the Warriors, but in a conference that features elite scorers at the position like Kawhi Leonard (29.7), Gordon Hayward (22.3) and Kevin Durant (19.7), Portland needs to load up.

“It takes a lot more than one good player, two good players, three good players,” he said. “You need to have a collective unit. Obviously, Paul George would help any team in the NBA.”

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Internet grills James Harden, Rockets over baffling blowout loss to Spurs

With Kawhi Leonard and Tony Parker out for Game 6 of the Western Conference semifinals, James Harden was expected to dominate the Spurs.

Instead, Jonathon Simmons and LaMarcus Aldridge led a perfectly executed game plan by Gregg Popovich to hold Harden and the Rockets to just 75 points in a 39-point win. Harden made just two field goals, had six turnovers and registered a minus-28 as Houston shot just over 30 percent in the loss.

From reporters to fans, here’s how the internet reacted after the Spurs built on their 19-point halftime lead to embarrass the Rockets and move on to face the Warriors in the Western Conference finals.

Celtics guard Marcus Smart shot just 2 of 9 from the floor and scored nine points, but he also had eight assists on a sloppy night.

We all could have been better, said Celtics coach Brad Stevens, who was also T-d up twice in the fourth quarter.

Limited Youth Mark Herzlich Jersey Without Tony Parker, the Spurs will try to win at Houston, where they won twice during the regular season. Kawhi Leonard was on fire in San Antonio’s Game 2 victory, but Houston’s James Harden has struggled to get on track in the series.

Limited Youth Oakland Raiders Jersey The Warriors, absent coach Steve Kerr for a second straight game, now have the chance to rest up and get healthy before their next roadblock on the route to the Finals.

Dwight Howard scored 16 points with 15 rebounds to help the Hawks beat the Wizards 111-101 and even the series at two games apiece. Seven Hawks finished in double figures on the night, but it was Howard’s dominant presence in the paint that helped Atlanta out-muscle an undersized Wizards squad.

people have noticed the dropoff in production from Woj.

Elite Youth Brian Dawkins Jersey Part of why Woj hasn’t been as effective could have to do with all of his new duties at ESPN. He’s having to make appearances on SportsCenter to talk about NBA news and has a lot more tasks than just being a breaking news reporter.

Some are theorizing it’s a play by Woj in order to get ESPN to go after Charania once his Yahoo contract expires. Another conspiracy is that people are leaking info to Charania instead because they’re upset by Woj’s move to ESPN.

Whatever the case, people have noticed the dropoff in production from Woj. We’ll see how much longer this continues. ESPN execs went after Woj so they wouldn’t have to credit other news outlets for big moves, and early on it’s not paying off quite as well as they’d hoped.

If you take a look at the two logos side by side, Gronkowski’s does pose a resemblance. A quick glance at the Gronkowski logo, and you might think it was one of those awful logos put on a bootleg Air Jordan sneaker or a child’s attempt at drawing the Jumpman.

Gronkowski’s logo can be found on his Gronk Fitness website where you can purchase equipment and workout apparel.

It has a subscription option with a spike button instead of submit.

It can also be found on his Gronk Bus logo, which is his version of a party bus. All of this is on brand for Gronkowski.

Elite Markus Golden Jersey The Bucs did spend a little on this line, signing 29-year-old former Redskins 3-4 end Chris Baker to complement Gerald McCoy as a 4-3 tackle. McCoy has needed veteran support at this level for a while, and the strength of a good unit will lie inside.

Phillies’ Aaron Altherr turns circus catch into double play

Aaron Altherr turned what could have been a bad play into a great play.

The Phillies center fielder ran in to catch a shallow pop-up off the bat of Mets third baseman T.J. Rivera in the bottom of the seventh inning of Sunday’s game. But as Altherr called off shortstop Freddy Galvis, Altherr misplayed the ball and it glanced off his glove. Fortunately for Altherr, the ball bounced off his shoulder and he was able to catch it before it hit the ground to get the out.

But Altherr wasn’t done. He noticed Mets right fielder Jay Bruce, who was on first base, was well off the bag, and he doubled Bruce up with a toss to Phillies first baseman Tommy Joseph.

The Phillies held a 4-1 lead at the time and went on to a 7-1 victory over the Mets, who were held to just two hits as their four-game win streak was snapped.

Ajayi proved himself an asset in 2016, and his third year as a pro should be even better. His disheartening end to the season can be at least partially explained by the shoulder injury that hindered his performance. Two of his weakest performances — against the Cardinals and Jets — came against top-five rushing defenses in terms of yards per carry. In 2017, he’ll face only two teams that ranked in the top nine — and one is the Jets, who are in the midst of a major rebuild after jettisoning most of their veterans this offseason.

Tannehill and Ajayi could continue their ascension in 2017 but still miss the playoffs if new coordinator Matt Burke can’t wring more from his defense. In the past five seasons, Miami has ranked in the top 20 in yards allowed just once, coming in 12th in 2014’s 8-8 campaign. Those mediocre returns didn’t stop the last guy to hold Burke’s job, Vance Joseph, from earning a promotion to Broncos’ head coach this offseason.

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They’re just two more teams that felt that chaos and disorder were worth embracing.

Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado became the first MLB player in seven years to complete a cycle with a walk-off home run. His three-run blast in the bottom of the ninth lifted the Rockies to a 7-5 win over the Giants. Arenado went 4 for 5 and got the cycle with a triple in the first, single in the fourth, double in the sixth and then the home run in the ninth. The last person to complete a cycle with a walk-off homer was Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez, who did it against the Cubs in 2010.

Authentic Mens Drew Brees Jersey Also, consider this: One of the biggest draft-day trades was between the Chiefs and the Bills, with Kansas City moving up to get their heir-apparent quarterback in Patrick Mahomes and the Bills getting a future first-rounder to move down.

Mens Buffalo Bills Jersey Since then, Whaley’s role in the deal has been increasingly underplayed, but no matter what’s said about the power McDermott holds, that’s hard to fully buy into. Dorsey, though, definitely made that deal, and now he’s gone, too.

They’re just two more teams that felt that chaos and disorder were worth embracing.

All of those teams pulling triggers so late on positions that important — the wisdom of it will be known soon enough. Because, clearly, the season’s practically here.

To figure that out, I set up four tiers of teams on a superteam scale, looking at every team with at least two established current stars.

Who qualifies as a star? A player has to have been on an All-Star team or an All-NBA team in any of the previous three seasons. A superteam gets five points for first-team All-NBA, three points for second-team All-NBA and one point for All-NBA third team or an All-Star team. Players over 35 don’t count, since we’re talking about stars near their peak.

He went on to say more which did nothing to keep people from being suspicious of the entire situation.

Limited Chuck Bednarik Jersey At 6-9, Kuzma can battle in the paint, but his best attribute is his outside shooting. If he can consistently knock down shots, he could become a starter in the NBA.

Josh Hart, SG, Lakers (30th overall) — Los Angeles traded down with Utah to get the last pick in the first round. They made the most of their selection by picking one of the most productive college players in the draft.

Hart, who won a national championship during his Villanova career, is a great shooter and slasher. He isn’t the quickest player, and he needs to work on his ball-handling a bit, but Hart is a smart, determined two-way player that should find a role with the Lakers.

Authentic Derek Holland Jersey However, when Suns’ GM Ryan McDonough was asked if the Suns may have possibly asked Jackson to skip that workout with the Celtics, he threw gasoline on some embers that quickly turned into a flame.

I’d like to consult my attorney B.J. Armstrong, McDonough said. Armstrong conveniently is Josh Jackson’s agent.

He went on to say more which did nothing to keep people from being suspicious of the entire situation.

I think you guys who know me well know how competitive I am. Look, it is a competition, he said. The Celtics were ahead of us at No. 3 and they could have selected whoever they wanted to. I think they got a very good player in Jayson Tatum, but that doesn’t mean B.J. and I and … other members of my staff couldn’t talk and try to formulate the best plan to get a player we were really high on to a place we felt he really wanted to go and would be a great fit for him.

We played by the rules – I guess.

Yeah, that is very comforting there and throws all suspicion off of you sir.

Head2Head: Packers will have to prayagain to contain Julio Jones

The Packers had the NFLs second-worst pass defense during the 2016 season.

They will have their hands full Sunday (3:05 p.m. ET, Fox) against a potent Falcons passing attack led by quarterback Matt Ryan.

Getting pressure on Ryan up front will be key, but the Packers maligned secondary must find some way to contain Pro Bowl receiver Julio Jones.

Fox directors caught a nice sideline shot of Romo wearing his Cowboys cap and headset, with a worried, out-of-focus Dak Prescott in the background. I also liked the shot of the nervous Cowboys assistant literally chewing his fingernails on the sidelines as the Packers threatened to turn the game into a blowout.

As if on cue, Prescott and the Cowboys stormed back to tie the game at 31-31 before Rodgers drove a stake through the heart of Cowboy Nation.

As my colleague David Steele writes, Rodgers’ 36 yard strike to Jared Cook will go down with some of the great receptions in NFL playoff history, along with Dwight Clark’s The Catch and David Tyree’s helmet grab.

But lets not ignore the reality. Here is a man who has been accused of assaulting at least two women and spitting on another. He was ordered to pay $12.4 million to victims of a shooting that he precipitated in 2007.

The Bengalslocker room fractured in 2010, with Carson Palmer refusing to return. Jones started a fight with a bodyguard that December, was arrested the following offseason and arrested again the one after that. So in 2013, the Bengals gave him a three-year contract extension. Then he was arrested again.sharks_346

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Williams is another big add as a veteran guard brought in this February

Cleveland’s additions of Kyle Korver, Deron Williams and others doesn’t go pound-for-pound with the Warriors bringing in Durant, but these players do make a noticeable impact from a year ago. Korver gives James an additional shooter, which can be deadly off the bench. Korver isn’t going to carry the Cavs to victory on a given night, but he can make timely 3-pointers, which he proved in the series against the Hawks when he made 11 threes in four games.

Williams is another big add as a veteran guard brought in this February. The Cavs were in desperate need of someone to take control of the bench when Kyrie Irving sat, and Williams is that.
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Brandon Doughty Youth Jersey He’s given us a huge boost, James said of Williams in April. We needed him. We’re happy we got him.

We have grown closer and closer as the year’s gone on and as the playoffs have started, and he’s — we’re always encouraging each other, Durant said. So it feels good to win one with him. And for him to play so well throughout the whole series, it’s — it feels great. A lot of people have been doubting him and been hoping that he fails and hoping that I fail, hoping that we fail as a group. And the one thing that it was a constant with us was the joy that we have for the game of basketball. I learned, I got a lot from him from that. He enjoys playing basketball.

It says a lot that, here as his first season with Golden State closes, Durant says that he learned to enjoy basketball again from Curry. Draw your own conclusions, but it sure sounds like Durant wasn’t particularly happy by the end of his Thunder tenure.

Again, it is not as though the league’s observer class went easy on Durant this year. The media were certainly no softer on him than at any time he’d been in OKC. He noticed.