Thursday, December 26
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The next miracle on 33rd street may be a franchise turnaround. [As] the Oklahoma City Thunder were blasting the New York Knicks off their own floor Christmas afternoon, the Knicks' decision-makers were plotting a retrofit. ... And they've already got [Carmelo Anthony's] help lined up. According to league sources, the Knicks' first prong is to try to attract the Celtics' Rajon Rondo. This idea has been tossed around in various forms for a while now, it's not shocking. But the way the Knicks are hoping to get Rondo is a little unusual. It's not in free agency in 2015 but later this season or next summer when he comes back from a torn ACL. The Knicks are hoping Rondo will be interested in making a maneuver similar to what Anthony did back in 2011 and eventually try to force a trade to the Knicks, sources said.(ESPN)Comment
Getting the band back together isn't easy in the NFL, and Denver is no different. The Broncos have 16 players headed for free agency, including 12 who have started at least one game in 2013. The list ranges from every-game offensive starters Eric Decker, Knowshon Moreno and Zane Beadles to veteran backups Quentin Jammer, Michael Huff and Winston Justice. ... The toughest decision may be on Moreno. The Broncosdrafted Ronnie Hillman two years ago in the third round and Montee Ball this year in the second round, with the plan of replacing Moreno when he became a free agent after this season. But nothing alters plans like player performance. Moreno has been invaluable as a rusher (1,015 yards), receiver (55 catches) and blocker (Manning has taken a league-low 17 sacks).(The Denver Post)Comment
For the Yankees, the clock is set on Masahiro Tanaka. With the Japanese right-hander free to seek a major league job, a 30-day window has been established for clubs to sign him. The opening bell will be rung on Thursday when Tanaka and his new agent, Casey Close, can begin discussions with interested teams that first submit a posting fee capped at $20 million. The righty has until 5 p.m. on Jan. 24 to strike a deal with a US club. The Yankees might appear as the obvious favorite to sign Tanaka, but the Dodgers, Cubs, Diamondbacks, Angels and Red Sox all have been mentioned as teams with interest and enough payroll flexibility to make a charge. The Yankees are expected to have an answer on Alex Rodriguez's situation by Jan. 24, too..(New York Post)Comment
The Game, Kobe Bryant and Samuel L. Jackson posing courtside at the Heat-Lakers game on Wednesday. (Noel Vasquez/Getty Images Entertainment)
Game To Watch
Poinsettia Bowll: Utah State vs. No. 24 Northern Illinois 9:30 p.m. ET
- Utah State
- Northern Illinois
SI Vault: Pittsburgh Steelers
This Day in Sports
- 1908 -- Jack Johnson became the first African-American to win boxing's heavyweight title.
- 1919 -- The Yankees and Red Sox reached an agreement on a trade for Babe Ruth.
- 1991 -- Chuck Noll retired after coaching the Pittsburgh Steelers for 23 seasons, ending his career with four Super Bowl titles and 193 victories.