Thursday, August 21, 2014

Rex Ryan rips rookie Andre Williams for calling Giants the 'real New York team' :Report

New York Giants Andre Williams hasn't been in New York long enough to remember when the Jets were actually the toast of New York but he found out that Gang Green head coach Rex Ryan still does and doesn't take kindly to anyone burning his team — even a rookie.

The newbie running back, who will face the Jets for the first time this week, recently delved right into the MetLife Stadium rivalry before ever running a regulation NFL down by proclaiming, “I think the Giants are the real New York team” earlier this week.

Never one to let a blustery retort pass him by, Ryan poked back with a two-winded response by mocking one of the rookie's college games and giving a shout out to his son Seth's college team, Clemson, all in the same breath.

“Last time I saw (Williams), he was getting smoked by Clemson,” Ryan said Wednesday while getting his Jets ready to play the Giants  in the annual preseason “Snoopy Bowl.”

Williams and Boston College lost to Clemson, 24-14, on Oct . 12 last year. 

“You know what? It’s great,” Ryan said of Williams. “I have a funny feeling he’s going to get some (helmets) put on him, or whatever. But we’ll see, it’ll be a competitive thing. I know he’s going to be pumped up, but trust me, our guys are going to be pumped up, too.”

However, Ryan did pay the Giants’ fourth-round pick a compliment. “I will say, that kid’s a good back though. Is anybody going to tackle him?” Ryan said.

Ryan wasn’t the only member of the Jets to respond to Williams’ comment. Defensive tackle Damon Harrison tweeted Wednesday, “See you Friday Mr. Williams...#JetLifeeeeee.”

Though Friday’s game is just an exhibition, Ryan said it carries more intensity than a normal preseason game.

“It is a bigger deal than preseason games when you play other people,” Ryan said. “You’ve got guys popping off, the running back from Boston College, he’s already saying the Giants are the best team in New York. You don’t get to play each other. And so this is the only time you really get to play each other, and I think it amps it up a little bit, I really do.”

And anyway. Both teams play in New Jersey.

A-Rod takes ALS ice bucket challenge (VIDEO)

The ALS ice bucket challenge has gotten so big it's even taken Alex Rodriguez away from rehabbing at the University of Miami and putting his tubs of ice to another good use.

The embattled Yankees third baseman hasn't been seen or heard from much since losing his appeal and serving his 162-game suspension for alleged performance-enhancing drug violations. But love him or loathe him, A-Rod returned Wednesday, joining the ice bucket challenge craze, which aims to bring awareness to ALS.

And considering A-Rod's icy relationship with some teammates, fans and MLB, suffice it to say, the man knows about being frozen out.

He also challenged U of Miami President Donna Shalala, MLB analyst Harold Reynolds, ex-teammate Robinson Cano and 24-Hour Fitness founder Mark Mastrov to take the challenge.

Yankee fans can only hope Rodriguez saved some of that cold stuff for his bum hip. The Yankees will be paying him through the 2017 season.

David Ortiz and Albert Pujols have adorable battle at first base (VIDEO)

When you think of David Ortiz and Albert Pujols, the first things that comes to mind are probably home runs and championships.

The last thing you would think of is the two future Hall of Famers fighting each other at first base.

And you would be right … sort of.

On Wednesday night, the two sluggers had a playful battle with each other while meeting up at the corner a couple of times.

After David Ortiz slid back into the first base bag, Pujols rapped him on the head with his glove. So Ortiz responded the only way possible: with a soothing back massage. 

The boys have another play date set up for Thursday afternoon, so expect more antics at Fenway.

Brett Gardner does his own incredible version of Derek Jeter's 'The Dive' (VIDEO)

Brett Gardner tracked down a ball in foul territory and made an incredible catch at Yankee Stadium Wednesday night, flipping over the left field wall and tumbling into the stands for the out.
In a way, it's sort of reminiscent of Derek Jeter's legendary "The Dive." And although Gardner didn't make the head-first grab against the Red Sox or come up with a bloodied face — it's still a fantastic play.

And the Yankee leftfielder's catch gives us a chance to relive one of Jeter's most unforgettable career highlights (below) before he heads off to retirement.

Or maybe it will better remind you of Jeter's "The Catch" in the 2001 ALDS against the A's.

Either way — well played Brett.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

NFL wants performers to pay to play Super Bowl halftime show: Report

Last year's Super Bowl halftime show had more viewers than the actual game and the freebie television extravaganza is so coveted by artists in the music industry, they schmooze the NFL long before a big name performer is secured for the gig.

But this year the National Football League is asking potential performers to pay to play the high-profile concert, according to The Wall Street Journal

While the NFL is notorious for demanding — and receiving — major concessions from its Super Bowl host cities. Now it wants halftime performers, who typically perform for free in exchange for monumental publicity, to add a little more jingle to the wealthy football league's coin pouch.

The NFL, in seeking to book the halftime show for Super Bowl XLIX on Feb. 1, 2015 outside Phoenix, has reportedly asked the potential headliners to "contribute a portion of their post-Super Bowl tour income to the league, or if they would make some other type of financial contribution, in exchange for the halftime gig, reported the WSJ.

The proposition has returned icy responses from the three final candidates: Katy PerryRihanna and Coldplay . The NFL does not usually pay the act that performs during the halftime ceremony, but has covered travel and production expenses, which can run into the multimillion-dollar range, The Journal reported.

Joanna Hunter, a spokeswoman for the NFL, said the league's goal is "to put on the best show possible." 

A valuable promotional opportunity for any performer, the halftime show drew a record 115.3 million viewers last February when the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Bruno Mars took the stage. Some artists have used this platform to announce upcoming tour dates and boost ticket sales. Many also see a sharp increase in CD and download sales directly after the performance. 

But shaking down Katy Perry? Think of the singer's 15-year-old girls demographic the NFL will lose for the big game.

Kole Calhoun robs Brock Holt of home run with towering catch at wall (VIDEO)

Kole Calhoun — the Angels outfielder with a rodeo wrangler's name — corralled a long fly ball to rob Brock Holt of a three-run homer with a ridiculous catch Tuesday night at Fenway Park.

Calhoun timed his second-inning catch perfectly before leaping over the right field wall bailing out Jared Weaver — who looked ready to be stampeded by the Red Sox doggies.

Kole, Brock and Jared? Sounds like a few cowhands from Rawhide.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Rams offer free tickets to high schools near Ferguson riots: Report

There doesn't seem to be anything that anyone can do to ease the tension in Ferguson, Mo. right now, but one NFL team has made a small attempt at bringing normalcy back for some school kids in the nearby area.

The St. Louis Rams organization is offering free tickets to Saturday’s preseason game to area schools overwhelmed by the riots which followed the police shooting of an unarmed man and set off days of protests and mayhem in the streets.

Whether or not you consider it a generous offer to help bring sanity back to kids confused by the current state of affairs or a blatant PR attempt conveniently combining national news with something far less important like sports, three local high schools will each receive 75 free tickets to see the home team play the Cleveland Browns, reported

Rams manager of fan development and alumni relations Kyle Eversgerd contacted coaches at McCluer High, McCluer North and McCluer South; offering the free tickets to each team if they wanted them.

“In light of everything going on it just kind of hit me,” Eversgerd said. “I can’t imagine with all that stuff going on, how tough it must be to practice. We were able to get them away from it all.”

It’s a nice gesture for a suburban town gripped by uncertainty and, hopefully, the payoff will be peace of mind for a couple of hundred teenagers — and that they can pay it forward.