Reports: MLS proposes June 1 return for a league-wide tournament in Orlando — Press Telegram

Major League Soccer could be back in action as soon as the end of June with a tournament in Orlando involving all of its 26 teams, according to multiple reports Wednesday. The league’s proposed competition, which would need to be approved by the MLS Players Association, would have players and coaches assemble at ESPN’s Wide…

Reports: MLS proposes June 1 return for a league-wide tournament in Orlando — Press Telegram

Major League Soccer could be back in action as soon as the end of June with a tournament in Orlando involving all of its 26 teams, according to multiple reports Wednesday.

The league’s proposed competition, which would need to be approved by the MLS Players Association, would have players and coaches assemble at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports complex for 3-4 weeks of training on June 1. Then a series of matches would be help without fans and take place at the Orlando complex.

The LAFC and the Galaxy, are among a few teams — including Earthquakes in Northern California — that have yet to be cleared to hold workouts because of stringent shelter-in-place orders in their area due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

ESPN reported obstacles will need to be overcome for the plan to come to fruition, most notably with testing. Players, coaches and support staff would all need to regularly tested. The league’s plan would prohibit family members from traveling with teams.

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In addition, the players association and the league are currently involved in sensitive negotiations over salary cuts. Owners have asked that all players agree to a 20 percent salary reduction, among other concessions.

There hasn’t been an indication yet whether the tournament games would count toward the regular season standings or not. The tournament winner’s prize could be a berth in the CONCACAF Champions League, according to ESPN.

The league’s proposed tournament would have teams divided into groups, followed by five games in group play. Then a knockout stage will follow, that would include consolation games so all teams played the same amount of games.

An NBA superstar conference call was oddly missing the game’s greatest scorer, James Harden — Onboard 2020

With each passing day, there is a new development between NBA players and owners, with both sides working on resuming the 2019-2020 season. And on Monday, some of the league’s biggest stars came together for a conference call to help provide a united front for the players in their quest to finish what they started. Yahoo Sources: […]

An NBA superstar conference call was oddly missing the game’s greatest scorer, James Harden — Onboard 2020

With each passing day, there is a new development between NBA players and owners, with both sides working on resuming the 2019-2020 season.

And on Monday, some of the league’s biggest stars came together for a conference call to help provide a united front for the players in their quest to finish what they started.Chris Haynes@ChrisBHaynes

Yahoo Sources: NBA superstars LeBron James, Chris Paul, Damian Lillard, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard and Stephen Curry held private conference call on Monday and established united front in favor of resuming season. https://sports.yahoo.com/sources-nba-superstars-establish-united-front-on-private-conference-call-to-resume-season-210518262.html …

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The call featured Chris Paul, the President of the National Basketball Players Association, as well as former league MVPs LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Steph Curry and Giannis Antetokounmpo.

But there was one noticeable omission that immediately caught the eyes of fans and pundits alike.

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There hasn’t been any explanation for why 6-time All-NBA performer and 2018 NBA MVP James Harden wasn’t on the conference call, but that hasn’t stopped the speculation, with some wondering if he was excluded due to his rocky relationship with Paul, his former teammate in Houston.

The two played together from 2017-2019, and their first season together produced a league-best 66 wins and a trip to the Western Conference Finals, where they would lose in seven games to the eventual champion Golden State Warriors.

After an injury-riddled second season in Houston, in which Paul would miss 24 games, the Rockets would once again be eliminated by the Warriors, this time in six games in the 2019 Western Conference Semifinals.

In the postgame press conference after Game 6, Harden alluded to changes that needed to be made to the roster.

Samson: MLB owners should see if their players agree with Blake Snell’s ‘just not worth it’ comments —

David Samson says team owners should ask players whether they’re interested in sitting out the 2020 season

Samson: MLB owners should see if their players agree with Blake Snell’s ‘just not worth it’ comments —

Tampa Bay Rays ace Blake Snell is not planning on playing the 2020 MLB season on a reduced salary. On a Twitch stream this week, he became the latest player to speak out against the proposed 50-50 revenue split that MLB has offered the MLBPA in a potential plan to start the season, which has been delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Snell believes that the risk of contracting the coronavirus is “just not worth it” — especially for less money than his contract says he should be earning. 

During Thursday’s edition of “Nothing Personal with David Samson,” David Samson weighed in on Snell’s recent comments and believes that owners should press their players to see if they agree with what Snell is saying.

“The union looks at what Blake Snell says and doesn’t even give it a thought,” Samson said. “The owners look to see what Blake Snell says and they latch onto it because if they see one little fissure in the union, what they would try to do as I would try to do. I would get to my players and say listen ‘Do you believe and agree with what Blake said? Do you not understand that A.) We’re trying to take care of the health aspect? and B.) Do you understand that you’re getting older and you’d have a full year of not playing making no money. Blake Snell says you’re all fine with that.”https://playlist.megaphone.fm/?e=CBS5990299485

The players’ union has yet to agree to the proposal, and many stars have said they are not on board with the new revenue split plan. Cincinnati Reds pitcher Trevor Bauer called the proposal “laughable.”

It’s going to be interesting to see if many players side with Snell as the process of resuming baseball rolls along. Samson thinks this will be a great opportunity to see if the majority of the players truly feeling this way in regards to playing with COVID-19 still being in everyone’s minds.

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Samson: MLB owners should see if their players agree with Blake Snell’s ‘just not worth it’ comments —

Doc Rivers says LeBron James ‘may have been the greatest football player ever’ — My worldwide

Doc Rivers says LeBron James ‘may have been the greatest football player ever’ How many times have you heard the question asked, “What if LeBron James had chosen football over basketball?” Even at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School, where James was one of the top football recruits in the state of Ohio, it was clear […]

Doc Rivers says LeBron James ‘may have been the greatest football player ever’ — My worldwide

Even at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School, where James was one of the top football recruits in the state of Ohio, it was clear his future was on the hardcourt. His run of dominance in the NBA has been so profound since 2003, however, that even today, at 35 years old, James has people thinking about what might have been.

So it is for Clippers coach Doc Rivers, who interviewed with Austin Rivers on Wednesday and said that James “may have been the greatest football player ever” had he chosen that route.

“Michael (Jordan) was a super athlete, so was Kobe (Bryant), so was Kawhi (Leonard),” Rivers said. “I don’t know that there’s ever been an athlete like LeBron James in our league. I really believe if LeBron James had have played football, he may have been the greatest football player ever, at whatever position.”

Austin Rivers & Doc Rivers agree on LeBron James being the greatest athlete of all-time

“I really believe if LeBron James had to play football, he may have been the greatest football player ever.”

(🎥 @uninterrupted ) pic.twitter.com/T48KRneg0z

— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) May 13, 2020

MORE: Jordan vs. LeBron — the key stats you need to know in the GOAT debate

Per this news clip James shared to his Instagram page, he caught 60 passes for 1,200 yards and 16 touchdowns as a junior (The New York Times reports that he actually caught 61 passes for 1,245 yards and 16 touchdowns; an improvement from his 42-catch, 820-yard, seven-touchdown season as a a sophomore).

With James standing at a listed 6-8, 232 pounds, it’s easy to see how he would have been one of the most coveted high school recruits in the nation, regardless of position. It stands to reason that James — an Akron, Ohio native — probably would have gone to powerhouse Ohio State had he chosen football as his career choice. James’ football career ended the summer before his senior year after he broke his wrist in an AAU game.

MLB partners with its PED testing lab for COVID-19 testing — HardballTalk | NBC Sports

Utah’s Sports Medicine Research and Testing Laboratory will provide coronavirus testing for 3,000 MLB personnel. But at what cost to the public?

MLB partners with its PED testing lab for COVID-19 testing — HardballTalk | NBC Sports

Leafs sign Brooks to two-year contract, Robertson named OHL’s most sportsmanlike player — Toronto Sun

Put Adam Brooks in the mix for a Maple Leafs forward spot next season. Read More

Leafs sign Brooks to two-year contract, Robertson named OHL’s most sportsmanlike player — Toronto Sun

And while we realize Brooks was probably in that conversation anyway, the notion became a little more official on Thursday when the Leafs announced they have signed the 24-year-old Winnipeg native to a two-year, two-way contract with an annual average value of $725,000 US.

Brooks got his feet wet in the National Hockey League this past December and January, playing in seven games for the Leafs and recording three assists.

In 29 games with the Toronto Marlies, Brooks had 20 points (nine goals and 11 assists).

“He got his first taste of the NHL this year and it was really impressive to see him thrive within those opportunities,” Marlies coach Greg Moore said earlier this week. “When he came back you could also see a level of confidence that he gained from that experience.”

A fourth-round pick by the Leafs in 2016 (92nd overall), Brooks has compiled 79 points in 147 regular-season games with the Marlies. He has 14 points in 33 career playoff games, including six in 20 when the Marlies won the Calder Cup in 2018.https://www.youtube.com/embed/GKWKVn7kAnI?

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Leafs sign Brooks to two-year contract, Robertson named OHL’s most sportsmanlike player — Toronto Sun

Celtics’ Enes Kanter ‘Definitely Becoming’ WWE Wrestler After NBA Career — NESN.com

Enes Kanter already knows what he wants to do once his NBA career is over. The Boston Celtics center spoke with The Athletic’s Shams Charania about his life after basketball — and he apparently already has an offer on the table. “Oh, I’m definitely becoming a WWE wrestler, for sure,” Kanter told Charania. “I actually…

Celtics’ Enes Kanter ‘Definitely Becoming’ WWE Wrestler After NBA Career — NESN.com

Jaylen Brown Said It’s ‘Understood’ That NBA Would Restart Into Playoffs — NESN.com

There’s no telling when the NBA will make its comeback, or if, but there is a general consensus of what it will look like when it does. Commissioner Adam Silver said he hopes to have a decision in two-to-four weeks, and reports came out yesterday that the owners are feeling positive about momentum towards finishing…

Jaylen Brown Said It’s ‘Understood’ That NBA Would Restart Into Playoffs — NESN.com

There’s no telling when the NBA will make its comeback, or if, but there is a general consensus of what it will look like when it does. Commissioner Adam Silver said he hopes to have a decision in two-to-four weeks, and reports came out yesterday that the owners are feeling positive about momentum towards finishing the season. And after the league’s players association polled its members yesterday, it’s clear players want to get back, too. Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown on Wednesday gave an interview with CNN, revealing that in a private player call, some of the NBA’s most influential athletes find it important to finish the year, and they all have the understanding that the league rolls right into the playoffs upon its return. “I think that is kind of, like, understood already, in a sense,” Brown said, transcribed by the Boston Globe’s Adam Himmeslbach. “I don’t want to jump the gun. But I think the playoffs is what makes the league most of its money, and I think if we all agree to come back and play in the playoffs, I think it can regenerate (the income) so that we’ll be able to have a pretty solid salary cap going into next year. So the playoffs are what’s important.” What that playoff format will look like is to be determined, but it would be easier than cramming the remainder of the regular season into a shorter time and is likely to be held in a campus-type centralized location. Read more at: https://nesn.com/2020/05/jaylen-brown-said-its-understood-that-nba-would-restart-into-playoffs/ Read more at: https://nesn.com/2020/05/jaylen-brown-said-its-understood-that-nba-would-restart-into-playoffs/

Read more at: https://nesn.com/2020/05/jaylen-brown-said-its-understood-that-nba-would-restart-into-playoffs/

NHL may go straight to the playoffs when the season resumes — TampaBayProSports

The NHL is moving ahead with the notion that they will be able to finish the 2019-20 season. The new wrinkle is that commissioner Gary Bettman, in talks with the NHLPA has moved on from the idea that the NHL will be able to complete the regular season. The season would begin with the Stanley […]

NHL may go straight to the playoffs when the season resumes — TampaBayProSports

The slow process of the NBA’s return in Toronto begins in the practice gym — Toronto Sun

Raptors forward Malcolm Miller hasn’t had basketball in his hands with a hoop in front of him in over two months. Read More

The slow process of the NBA’s return in Toronto begins in the practice gym — Toronto Sun
Raptors forward Malcolm Miller hasn’t had basketball in his hands with a hoop in front of him in over two months.
So when word came that the Raptors, in conjunction with health officials and local government, had hammered out an agreement that would see the Raptors be able to safely use their practice facility in limited fashion, Miller was the first one requesting entry.
Monday morning he and assistant coach Brittni Donaldson entered the OVO Athletic Centre, were checked in by a single security officer, had their temperature taken by an on-site health official and then filled out a health form before entering the gym.
Once in the gym it was only Donaldson and Miller. The Raptors, under NBA guidelines could have up to as many as four players in the gym at one time to adhere to social distancing mandates, but in an effort to be as careful as possible, the team has opted to allow just one player in at a time with just one on-court coach.
That could change in the coming days, but for now, that’s the format.
For an hour Donaldson put Miller through his paces working on his shooting, his ball handling and not much else for the time being given how long it has been since Miller was actually able to do any basketball activity and the fact that with only two people in the gym, options are limited.
Still, Miller couldn’t say enough about the opportunity.
“It definitely felt strange,” Miller, the third-year forward said of the experience. “I missed it. It was a good experience just to have the basketball in your hands, feel the basketball and just get back to the game you love, even in a different format.
It’s still a good experience.”
For Donaldson there was no trepidation re-entering the working environment that has been closed off to her for more than two months because of the on-going pandemic. She saw the process unfold as the team prepared to safely start bringing their team back to work and she felt fully secure returning to work.
“It’s all completely voluntary for everybody,” she said for both the players and the coaches. “I think we’ve been in contact with everybody in the organization from the top down about this possibility happening, about the facility possibly opening. We’ve covered all of our bases, we’ve been really deliberate about making sure everybody feels safe and we’re taking the extra precautionary steps to go above and beyond even what the NBA mandated. We’re only allowing one player in the gym at a time, we’re not allowing the players to bring their phones in, for example. I felt a sense of comfort just for the work our organization has done logistically to make this as smooth, organized a process as possible.”
Miller, whose off-season home is in Gaithersberg, Maryland chose to remain in Toronto since the league shut down back in early March because there wasn’t the access to a private gym or facility where he could work out.
He stayed in Toronto and got his workouts in at home whether that was his own P90X program or the group yoga sessions via video the Raptors do a couple of mornings a week. He also has the stationary bike the team delivered to this Toronto digs and a bench and weights.
But he had no where to actually get up shots or play basketball so on Monday, while just a small step in the broader scheme of a return to work, was still very big for him.
“I wouldn’t say it was a race but I definitely requested to be first,” he said of getting his time in the re-opened team practice gym. “I like to always be in there early, get my work done. Been heavy on the piano and into video games (lately) so that gives me a little extra time for that.
“Just trying to get back to a normal routine,” he said. “During the season, we’d come into the gym before 11 o’clock, before 12 o’clock to get our work in so I’m just trying to make it feel as normal as possible.”
Miller says the plan is to take advantage of the opportunity four or five times a week. Again this is strictly voluntary. Teams cannot pressure players into these workouts. Chris Paul, president of the Players’ Association took care of that when he mentioned it to commissioner Adam Silver on a conference call last week.
Silver at the time said such a move by any team would be “disheartening” and assured Paul and the rest of the players on the call that he would reiterate this to all team management groups.
Miller said he was surprised how quickly his jumper came back but admitted his dribbling skills (his handle) wasn’t quite what it had been before the pandemic shut down sports worldwide.
As it stands right now about half the team is in Toronto and as of Wednesday about half of those had decided to take the opportunity to get some shots up. That could change at any point.
“I think that’s kind of fluid, you know, It’s kind of day by day,” Donaldson said. “We take a poll of who would be interested in coming in and we try to put out a schedule but obviously it’s all voluntary, there’s no pressure, no repercussions if somebody doesn’t want to come in. We’re just trying to keep a rolling a schedule and keep it as organized as possible.”






Sources: NBA partners with Wilson to produce official game balls starting with 2021-22 season — Networthy Newz

The NBA’s contract with Spalding is expiring and now Wilson will be the new partner to produce the league’s official game ball starting with the 2021-22 season, which happens to be the league’s 75th anniversary, sources with knowledge of the deal informed Yahoo Sports. Wilson will also serve as the official game ball of the WNBA,…

Sources: NBA partners with Wilson to produce official game balls starting with 2021-22 season — Networthy Newz