Knicks Draft Day News: 3 teams New York are in trade talks with

New York Knicks, Tom Thibodeau

The New York Knicks have contacted the majority of teams in the late lottery, desperately trying to move back.

Whether or not they strike a deal is unknown, with the NBA draft set to commence at 8 PM.

Nonetheless, the team is making calls, packaging their first-round picks together as a selling point. Several partners are in the mix, but they haven’t nibbled at the bait the Knicks have cast out. Teams know that New York wants to move up, so they are waiting patiently until they’re willing to give more — a rather productive tactic.

Three teams the Knicks have connected with gauging a trade back:

1.) Golden State

According to Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report, the Knicks have been rejected from the Warriors:

“A source says the Knicks have made calls to late-lottery teams about trading up. I’m told the Warriors turned down Nos. 19 and 21 for No. 14. The Knicks don’t have strong enough draft assets to get into the top 10, and now it seems like a long shot they can get into the late lottery.”

It seems the 19 and 21 overall picks don’t hold much value, as the majority of top prospects will be off the board by then. Reports have indicated that the front office is targeting Chris Duarte out of Oregon or Davion Mitchell out of Baylor. Duarte could be in play at 19, but the Baylor stand-out has a slim chance of plummeting to the 20s.

2.) Indiana Pacers

According to Marc Berman of the NY Post, the Knicks have contacted the Pacers at 13 to gauge interest in a trade back:

According to NBA sources, the Knicks have talked not just to Golden State about moving up, but also to the Pacers, who have the 13th pick. The Knicks are trying to package their two first-round picks but may also have to add more draft capital (they have a total of 20 picks through 2026).

Since the Knicks’ quest to move up to 14 didn’t work, now they’re on to the Indiana Pacers, offering the same package for an even higher selection. At the end of the day, New York might have to give up their two first-round picks and early 2nd round (32) to move up into the lottery, something they would like to avoid.

3.) Charlotte Hornets

According to ESPN insider and NBA Draft expert Chad Ford, the Knicks and Oklahoma City Thunder are the two teams Charlotte has connected with regarding a trade back. The Hornets are looking to move back and add more picks, but the Thunders have the upper hand with both the 16 and 18th overall picks.

The Hornets are even higher with the 11th pick, so there’s no question all three first-rounders would have to be in play in this scenario.

The good news, Charlotte actually wants to move back in the draft and collect more capital, something the Knicks do contain. It all depends on how much they value their selections over Oklahoma’s.

New York Yankees: Gerrit Cole goes for the sweep of the Tampa Bay Rays today

yankees, gerrit cole

This afternoon the New York Yankees and ace Gerrit Cole go for what may be their most important game this season. A sweep of the Tampa Bay Rays. The Yankees have had big problems this season winning against the Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays. However, in the past two nights, the Yankees have taken the first two games of the series and have a chance for the sweep today and a possible turnaround to their season.

At 1:05 pm today, Gerrit Cole will face righty Luis Patino. Cole has been the Yankee’s most successful pitcher. He is 10-5 with an ERA of 2.74 and an incredible baseball-leading 166 strikeouts. He is coming off a loss to the Boston Red Sox. Back on July 10th, he pitched a complete-game shutout of the Houston Astros. Only one Ray has Cole’s number. Ji-Mon Choi has a .667 batting average against Cole in 12 at-bats.

The Rays will send out Luis Patino to face Cole. Patino is a righty that is 1-2 with an ERA of 5.26. Patino is a starter and long reliever for the Rays. He seldom goes more than four innings. This will be the seventh start of his pitching career. The Yankees have little experience with Patino. Only DJ LeMahieu and Gio Urshela have gotten a hit off him. The matinee game will be televised on the YES Network and Bally Sports Sun.

Cole, 30, was born on September 8, 1990, in Newport Beach, California, to Mark and Karen Cole. Cole’s father was from New York and a Yankee fan. His father would tell him Lou Gehrig and other famous Yankees stories, and the young boy would quickly become a Yankee fanatic. His father certainly nurtured Cole’s interest in the Yankees by flying him across the country seven times to Yankee Stadium to see his idols, Mariano Rivera, Derek Jeter, and Andy Pettitte. Then, in 2001 his Dad would take the young Cole to the World Series in Arizona to see his favorite Yankees play. The eleven-year-old could be seen in the stands with a Yankee uniform and cap on while holding a sign saying “Yankee Fan Today, Tomorrow, Forever”.

Through the Pittsburgh Pirate organization, Cole was traded to the Houston Astros, where he blossomed, becoming one of the best pitchers in the game. Cole was originally drafted by the Yankees in 2008 but decided to attend college at UCLA. That young boy with the sign in the stands in 2001 became a New York Yankee in December of 2019 when Hal Steinbrenner and company signed a $324 million contract with the then 29-year-old star pitcher.

In the shortened 2020 season, Cole was 7-3 with an ERA of 2.84. Yankee fans thought that although he was dominant, he wasn’t the same pitcher that went 20-5 for Houston the previous year. So far this year, He is 10-5 with an ERA of 2.74. With the poor hitting Yankees, Cole hasn’t gotten a lot of run support. If he did, his record would be better still. On July 10th Cole threw a career-high 129 pitches in a complete-game win over the Houston Astros, striking out 12. Cole is tied for fourth-most wins in all of baseball and with the third-lowest ERA.

Cole and his family moved to Greenwich, CT, a suburb of New York. The 6’4″ Cole is married to his wife Amy, who he met as a softball player at UCLA. His brother-in-law is Brandon Crawford of the San Francisco Giants. He and his wife love to cook and entertain family and friends. Cole is a healthy cook and a nutritional nut. Amy has a blog called “the Culinary Experience.” The two gave birth to a son last summer. Cole has a younger sister Erin.

 

 

 

New York Yankees still in on Trevor Story even after acquiring Joey Gallo

Yesterday, Brian Cashman and the New York Yankees finally did what the fans were begging for. They went out and made a big splash on the trade market. The Yankees agreed to a deal with the Texas Rangers to acquire lefty slugger Joey Gallo.

The deal is still being finalized and has not been announced yet by either club. However, at this point, the only thing that’s being reviewed is medicals. The Yankees will get Gallo and reliever Joely Rodriguez for four prospects.

Mark Feinsand reported this morning that the Rangers will be paying most of Gallo’s remaining Salary. That gives the Yankees a little wiggle room to go out and make another deal before the deadline which they are planning on doing.

Most reporters were vocal about the fact that the Yankees were not done after acquiring Gallo. He was the big one in terms of the deals they wanted to get done, but the Yankees are still looking to upgrade the team.

Brian Cashman has apparently realized the drastic need to shakeup the club. The Yankees finally have a little momentum and it’s feeling good in Yankee Land right now. While I figured they would focus on pitching, they are apparently still in on a Colorado shortstop.

Yankees still going after Story?

Jon Heyman reported this morning that even after acquiring Joey Gallo, the bombers are still interested in bringing in Trevor Story. While Gallo is controlled through next season, Story will be a free agent after the season.

It’s worth noting that in the Gallo deal, the team didn’t give up a single top ten prospect to make the deal happen. With the Rangers paying most of Gallo’s salary, the Yankees have financial room and still have the best prospects in their system.

Those two things gives the bombers a ton of flexibility in terms of what they want to do next. I’m a bit surprised to hear that they’re still in on Story. It appears that the Yankees are on the warpath and are looking at all options to improve the club.

I was told yesterday and it was also reported that that Giants are serious players for Story. My hunch is that he ends up there, but the Yankees do like him and see him as a big improvement for the infield.

While the Yankees already completed a big deal, they are far from done. This should be a really fun winddown to the 2021 trade deadline.

Sound Off: Do you want the Yankees to get Trevor Story or should they focus on pitching?

New York Jets LB Jarrad Davis on scheme, values, and mental health

new york jets, jarrad davis

Davis considered “walking away” from football, but the New York Jets’ call has afforded him a chance to reclaim the narrative on his career.

No matter their genre, fictional characters have embarked on new quests by hiring an expert in the field in question to complete their goals. Peter LaFleur brought in dodgeball legend Patches O’Houlihan to save Average Joe’s Gym. Norman Dale enlisted the services of former Hickory Husker Wilbur “Shooter” Flatch to help capture Indiana high school basketball glory.

In the real world, linebacker Jarrad Davis is in a similar position as he arrives in Florham Park for his first New York Jets training camp. Entering his fifth season out of Florida, Davis is a noted practitioner of 4-3 defense, which is set to make its return to New York under new head coach Robert Saleh and defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich.

The 4-3 has played host to Davis’ finest gridiron hours: his work under Geoff Collins and Randy Shannon’s system at the University of Florida made him a first-round pick of Detroit Lions (21st overall) in 2017. He was a strong fit for a similar system overseen by Teryl Austin, earning all-rookie team honors.

Davis returned to the 4-3 on Wednesday when he partook in the opening camp practice on One Jets Drive. He offered a positive review of what Saleh and Ulbrich had to offer in his first post-practice comments.

“The defense is so layered. On the front end, we have to cause havoc, stress quarterbacks out, get them off the spot,” the new front seven member said of the defense, per video from the Jets. “Linebackers, we need to help protect the middle of the field. We got to make sure our reads are sharp, our keys are where they need to be, eyes are where they need to be on our keys. We just got to make sure that we’re doing everything that we can do to take care of our jobs.”

“This defense, as with almost any other defense in the league, it’s about all 11 doing their job. If there’s somebody out of position, then it’s going to make somebody in the backend look bad, someone who may have done everything perfectly, because the timing isn’t there. It’s all about everybody just doing their job, just simply put.”

Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Though Austin was dismissed through the controversial firing of head coach Jim Caldwell, Davis enjoyed a productive sophomore season under Paul Pasqualoni (100 tackles, 10 for a loss, 6 sacks), even earning on-field playcalling duties. But Davis, like many, fell victim to the Matt Patricia cesspool in the Motor City. Injuries ate away at his 2019 season and he spent most of last season in a rotational role, playing a career-low 330 snaps over 14 games. Detroit declined to pick up his fifth-year option as they went back to the drawing board.

Faced with an uncertain football future, Davis entered a period of “soul searching”.  What made his Detroit demotion so painful, he said, was the fact that he was “making the game everything”.

“I was making myself the game. And when I was doing that, it just, it just didn’t feel right,” he said. “This is such a competitive sport at this level. You have to put your everything, you have to put your all into it. But there has to be balance. I had a personal life but it wasn’t as important, I didn’t really care. If my personal life got in the way of football, it couldn’t exist. Living like that, I burnt myself out.”

As a result, Davis admitted that he seriously contemplated “walking away” from football. Instead, he began a new offseason endeavor.

“Living like that, I would burn myself out,” Davis said of his relative all-or-nothing approach. “I had to go do some things to take care of myself personally, mentally, and emotionally and get back right.”

To that end, Davis met with a Super Bowl champion: Denver-based sports psychologist Dr. Rick Perea, Ph.D.

Described as “one of the nation’s most energetic and dynamic practitioners in Performance Psychology“, Dr. Perea was on the Denver Broncos’ staff during their run to Super Bowl 50 in the 2015-16 season. His services have also been employed by the Nuggets and Rockies, as well as several other NFL squads.

Davis previously worked with Dr. Perea during the 2017 draft process. This time around, the linebacker learned how to “revalue” things moving forward.

“Football was top of the top (of my values), nothing could knock it down. Nothing could knock down the foundation that football was standing on,” David recalled. “But we personally just cleared it. We just took it off the radar, like took it off my list. It’s just something I do now. It’s not who I am anymore.”

Don’t let the wording fool you: Davis believes that his revaluing process will make him a better player on the field. For example, a mistake that would haunt him for the rest of practice is forgotten by the next down.

“If I mess up in practice, I mess up in practice. I can bounce back from that and come back and make a better play the next play now,” he said. “Before, I messed up, now I think about that all practice. I can’t even focus on anything else. I can’t even see the fullback taking me to the gap I need to go to anymore because I’m thinking about this play that happened 20 minutes ago.”

The Jets’ call meant more for Davis under a new focus. New York inked him to a one-year deal worth $5.5 million in March, reuniting him with fellow former Gator Marcus Maye. The safety was chosen 18 picks after Davis in the 2017 draft, just three months after they capped off their Gainesville careers with a 30-3 over Iowa in the Outback Bowl.

An opportunity to return to a familiar scheme drew Davis to the metropolitan area.

“To get that phone call early in free agency from the Jets, it was a blessing to know that I had such an opportunity as this to come in and really get back to work,” Davis said. “I’m coming back to the scheme, the familiarity. We did stuff similar to this in college and being able to play fast and just be myself out there just excited me.”

Davis is one of many athletes who have shared their struggles with mental health in recent times. His discourse coincided with decorated American gymnast Simone Biles’ highly publicized withdrawal from several events at the 2020 Olympics Games in Tokyo due to such concerns.

Though Davis admitted he was not up to speed to comment on Biles’ situation, he hopes that his own situation will remove stigmas and inspire his teammates to ask for help if they need it.

“Why do we have to think getting help and not being okay, and saying that you’re not okay is a cool thing to do before you can actually say it?” Davis rhetorically asked. “If you’re not okay, you’re not okay, and it’s okay to ask for help. I guess it’s a very simple question, but it’s a powerful one.”

“People do need to understand that. When we do, we’ll be able to build and grow in life.”

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

Knicks: Surprise point guard has caught the eye of Tom Thibodeau, could be first round pick

miles mcbride, knicks

The Knicks are reportedly trying to trade up in the NBA draft on Thursday but have failed to find a partner willing to move out of the lottery. With targets like Chris Duarte and Davion Mitchell likely to be off the board by the 19th overall pick, the Knicks could shift their attention to one late first-round prospect, Miles McBride.

Marc Berman of The Post stated on Tuesday that Tom Thibodeau has an eye on Miles McBride of West Virginia as a target at the back-end of the first round:

According to one league source, Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau was pushing for West Virginia sophomore point guard Miles McBride, who has been projected in some mocks as an early second-round or late first-round pick. It’s unclear at which slot Thibodeau would prefer to select McBride — No. 19 or 21 in the first round, or No. 32 early in the second round — but the 20-year-old impressed him in his Knicks workout.

McBride is an intriguing player who averaged 15.9 points, 4.8 assists, and shot 43% from the field last year. From three, he connected on 41% over 3.8 attempts. One statistic that really stands out is his steals, averaging 1.9 per game. Playing 34.2 minutes per game, McBride is a low-key point guard prospect who could develop nicely behind an established veteran next season.

There is a possibility that McBride is selected with the 19th pick, if not 21, depending on how the Knicks operate regarding a trade. At 6’2″ with a 6-foot, 9-inch wingspan, McBride has the biggest hands of any guard in the draft.

One of McBride’s top strengths is defense, using quick hands and superior athleticism to cut passing lanes and poke the ball free from handlers. He likely fits the bill perfectly for Tom Thibodeau, who prefers defensive-minded players with offensive upside. One category that McBride needs to improve and is his court vision — he’s a bit raw as a PG but has the tools to develop nicely if given the opportunity.

New York Giants Top News: Devontae Booker’s big role, Kenny Golladay represents more than just a WR1

new york giants, kenny golladay

The New York Giants are planning to ease star running back Saquon Barkley into live-action. After suffering a torn ACL, MCL, and partially torn meniscus, prioritizing his health is essential.

With the Giants doing Saquon Barkley as a long-term solution, they made sure to bring in a secondary back to help take the load off early in the 2021 season. The front office signed former Las Vegas Raiders RB Devontae Booker to a two-year, $5.5 million deal. Booker has a dead cap of $2 million this season and a potential out in the 2022 off-season.

Booker is more than capable of handling starting reps if Barkley is forced to miss any time. Last season over 16 games, Booker tallied 423 yards, three touchdowns and caught 17 passes for 84 yards. After fumbling seven times in his first three seasons, he’s only allowed the ball to break loose just once in the past two years.

Most consider him a supplement to Barkley as he finds his way back from injury, but head coach Joe Judge still wants to see the veteran compete during training camp.

Judge stated that Devontae Booker only has himself to worry about, outside of Saquon Barkley’s situation:

“I think Devontae has to worry about himself and not worry about where anybody else is,” Judge said before today’s training camp practice, his first in-person news conference in about 17 months. “We’re going to look to get contributions from all of our players, no matter who is available on the roster. Again, whoever comes to a game for us is going to play, alright? We’re not traveling guys to sit there and watch the game.”

The importance of Kenny Golladay ranges beyond his utility on offense:

The Giants signed Golladay to a four-year, $72 million deal this off-season. He provides quarterback Daniel Jones with a WR1.

Golladay offers something new to quarterback Daniel Jones, a top wide receiver he can depend on regularly. Jones has operated with lackluster talent at times. His top receivers were sterling Shepard and Golden Tate in 2020. Golladay is only one year removed from a Pro Bowl performance, recording 1,190 yards and 11 scores. As a big possession receiver who fits Jason Garrett’s offensive scheme, Golladay will make a significant impact immediately.

Standing at 6’4″ and 214 pounds, Kenny is an elite red-zone threat, a category the Giants struggled in last season. His importance to the offense is directly connected to Daniel Jones, who will undoubtedly reap the rewards of Golladay’s presence.

New York Yankees: 3 Major takeaways from the Yankees 10th inning win

The New York Yankees went into last night’s game with the Tampa Bay Rays with the hope of taking the series from them for the second time this season. The Yankees won the first game 4-3 and last night 3-1 in ten innings. The Yankees record is now 7-8 against the Rays. Tonight the Yankees will go for the sweep with ace Gerrit Cole on the mound.

Nestor Cortes Jr. continues sharp play

After a win on Tuesday night, Nestor Cortes Jr. took to the mound last night to get the second win in a row against the rival Tampa Bay Rays; he did not disappoint. Cortes Jr. has been really sharp since he became a starter with the Yankees. Last night was no different. He went a full five innings and 79 pitches as the Yankees continue to stretch him out. He gave up just one run while striking out 5 Rays hitters. He was using all of his pitches, mystifying the Rays with all of his different looks.

He again did not get the win. He is 0-0 with a 1.93 ERA in eleven games, three of them were starts.

A rather dull game got exciting

With Nestor Cortes Jr. pitching really well and no home runs in the game for either team, it was pretty dull to watch. There were only 10 hits in the game. A problem that has dogged the Yankees all season continued last night as they left 6 on base going 1-10 with runners in scoring position. Last night’s Yankee bullpen was brilliant, not allowing a run after Cortes Jr. left after five innings.

If the first eight innings were on the dull side that all changed in the ninth inning with Chad Green on the mound, he held the Rays down with the game tied at 1, forcing the 10th inning.  In the tenth inning, with ghost runner Gio Urshela at second, Greg Allen against Pete Fairbanks got hit by a pitch advancing to first. Aaron Judge, with two on and no outs, singled to left. Urshela scored. That knocked Fairbanks out to the game. He was replaced by Andrew Kittredge, who threw a wild pitch scoring another New York Yankees run.

At the bottom of the frame with a two-run lead, closer Aroldis Chapman came in to close it out for the Yankees; that’s when it got really interesting. Diaz was the ghost running at second. Lowe struck out on a 101 mph fastball. Arozarena walked. Nelson Cruz pinch hit for Wendle. On a wild pitch, Diaz went to third and was called out. Upon review, he was called safe. Cruz then, with men on second and third, struck out. Mejia flew out to LeMahieu, who made a spectacular on-the-ground catch to end the inning and winning it for the New York Yankees.

Aaron Judge scratched at the last moment

Slugger Aaron Judge was scheduled in the lineup but at the very last moment was scratched from the lineup with no explanation. He wasn’t even seen in the dugout through the first five innings, causing fans to believe he might be sick or injured. But in the fifth inning, he appeared out of nowhere to pinch hit for Estevan Florial. Judge remained for the rest of the game.

After the game, in an interview with Meredith Marakovits, he explained after returning from the Covid list Tuesday night, there were further tests, and those tests were not returned before the start of Wednesday night’s game. Once those tests came back, he was available. Of the Yankee players that went on the Covid list, Judge was the only one that was not asymptomatic. When Marakovits asked if he was vaccinated, he avoided the question.

 

New York Jets: Ashtyn Davis, Vinny Curry set to miss Week 1

Head coach Robert Saleh announced on Wednesday that the New York Jets will be without two key defenders come opening day in Carolina.

New York Jets head coach Robert Saleh broke some tough news as training camp practices commenced on Wednesday.

By a “conservative” estimate, safety Ashtyn Davis won’t come off the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list until the Jets’ home opener in Week 2 against New England. Saleh likewise predicted that Vinny Curry would also miss the Jets’ kickoff weekend showdown with the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte on September 12.

According to Saleh, Davis’ problem is the same foot injury that kept him out of the final four games of last season. Davis, a third-round pick out of Cal-Berkeley in last year’s virtual draft, is expected to take on a larger role in the strong safety spot. Veteran newcomer Lamarcus Joyner will likely take on an expanded role, backed by fellow acquisition Sharrod Neasman and former XFL representative Elijah Campbell.

As for Curry, formerly of the Philadelphia Eagles, Saleh mentioned that an offseason procedure “is going to hold him up”. The Super Bowl champion spent parts of last season on injured reserve with a hamstring issue that cost him four games.

Saleh’s injury updates weren’t fully dire. The head coach mentioned that both Quinnen Williams and Kyle Phillips are anticipated to be ready for the Jets’ visit to Green Bay during the second week of the preseason. New York will partake in joint practice sessions with the Packers before an exhibition battle on August 21.

The head coach went into a little more detail on Williams, whose return is one of the most anticipated of the season after his breakthrough sophomore season. Williams has been sidelined with a foot injury suffered while working out at the team’s training facility over the spring. Saleh said that the third pick of the 2019 draft hasn’t partaken in team activities yet for precautionary reasons, per notes provided by the Jets.

“(We’re taking a) slower approach in terms of making sure that this doesn’t happen to the other foot and all that stuff,” Saleh said. “I’m still not concerned at all about Quinnen, he does look good out there. He started running, he’s in good shape. He’s going through all of it, he’s been here. We’re confident when he hits the field, he’ll hit the ground running.”

Asked if Williams would be ready for Week 1 in Carolina, Saleh merely replied “I don’t want to jinx it”.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

 

Mets Escape With 2-1 Victory Over Braves After Exciting Ninth Inning

The New York Mets five-game series against the Atlanta Braves have been a dog fight from the beginning, and it proved again in game four. The Mets 2-1 win was symbolic of their 2021 surprising success. It featured unlikely heroes, bullpen success, and tremendous defense to get a much-needed victory.

After a tense 1-1 battle that carried into the seventh inning, manager Luis Rojas turned to the bat of Brandon Drury. He was fresh off a 3-for-3 night in Tuesday’s blowout loss and was 6-for-14 as a pinch hitter. Drury waited back on a Max Fried curveball and launched it deep into the left-field bleachers for a 2-1 Mets lead.

Battle Tested

The usually reliable Aaron Loup got the ball to protect the lead in the eighth but ran into instant trouble. After two straight singles to leadoff inning, a swinging bunt from Freddie Freeman set the Braves up with runners on second and third with only one out. Jeurys Familia came into face the red-hot Austin Riley, who homered earlier in the game. Familia struck out Riley, then induced a Dansby Swanson groundout to escape the jam.

Trouble returned in the ninth inning for Edwin Diaz, who allowed a leadoff double to Abraham Almonte. After getting a flyout, Ehire Adrianza singled to right field, and a perfect throw from Michael Conforto and a great tag from James McCann nabbed Almonte from scoring the tying run. Pablo Sandoval flew out to Kevin Pillar, cutting towards the left-center field gap to secure the win.

Tylor Megill was solid once again in 5.1 innings, allowing just one run while striking out six to lower his ERA to a very impressive 2.04. The combination of five relievers the Mets used allowed just four hits, no walks, and kept the Braves scoreless. The win pushed the Mets four games ahead of the second-place Philadelphia Phillies and five ahead of the Braves.

On Thursday, both teams finish up their series with a 12:10 afternoon game. Drew Smyly faces Taijuan Walker in the rubber game of the five-game series from Citi Field.