Monday, December 31, 2012

Jets owner fires GM Tannenbaum, keeps coach Rex

Black Monday got off to a quick start today after the New York Jets announced that they had fired general manager Mike Tannenbaum in a not totally unexpected move. Offensive coordinator Tony Sparano is reportedly the next member of the Jets staff who will fall off the team's fiscal cliff.

Owner Woody Johnson said Rex Ryan would remain the head coach.

Johnson, who didn't make the trip to Buffalo to see his wretched team end its season with a 28-9 loss to the Bills, released the following statement Monday morning:

“Our 2012 season was a disappointment to all of us. My goal every year as owner is to build a team that wins consistently. This year, we failed to achieve that goal,” Johnson’s statement read. “This morning, I informed Mike Tannenbaum that he will not return for the 2013 season. Mike devoted 15 years of service to the Jets, and I want to thank him for his hard work and dedication. Although he helped guide us to two consecutive AFC Championship games, we are not where we want to be, and a new General Manager will be critical to getting this team back on the right track.”


"Rex Ryan will remain the head coach of our football team," the owner added.  "I believe that he has the passion, the talent, and the drive to successfully lead out team for greater success going forward."

Johnson said the team will start a search for a new GM through the services of Korn/Ferry International, the same search firm that conducted the NFL commissioner search in 2006. 

"Our process with Korn/Ferry will be led by Jed Hughes, who heads their sports practice and who previously led the general manager search for the Seattle Seahawks, among others," said Johnson.  "When we have updates on this process, we will provide them to our fans and the media."

The owner apologized for the Jets' recent poor play — which resembled 16 episodes of The Three Stooges slapstick rather than an NFL season .

"Like all Jets fans, I am disappointed with this year's results," he said.  "However, I am confident that this change will best position our team for greater success going forward."

Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk.

A-Rod has 'pre-hab' vacation in Cabo before surgery

Alex Rodriguez is taking a little break at a private villa with girlfriend Torrie Wilson and his two kids before he undergoes hip surgery in mid-January.

The New York Yankees third baseman has made Cabo San Lucas his favorite holiday getaway over the past few years but this time the trip is not all about relaxation.

A-Rod has been reportedly been working out with Wilson twice a day as a sort of "pre-hab" before he undergoes the knife next month, reports The New York Post.

A source told The Post that, "Alex visits the gym every morning and every afternoon for at least an hour each time with his personal trainer, who he has flown in with him.  He is very focused on doing "pre-hab" to prepare himself for surgery, which involves core work to strengthen and improve his recovery time."



The source claims it is Wilson, not surprisingly, who is getting most of the attention for her sculpted body.

"People keep approaching her to ask her for her workout routine and her diet," said the spy.



Wilson's hot bod might just be the thing to keep the punchless A-Rod from thinking about Kevin Youkilis — the Yankees' new replacement at third base while he recovers.

Another source said the couple have been keeping a low profile with friends like George Clooney and his girlfriend Stacey Keibler:

"They haven't been partying, they've been staying in their villa, spending time with the kids and reading a lot."


Adrian Peterson didn't realize how close he was to breaking record

It might have been the excitement of making the playoffs after a must-win game but  — after falling just nine yards shy of Eric Dickerson's single season rushing record of 2,105 yards — Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson seemed genuinely flabbergasted that he had come so close to breaking the 28-year-old record.

While being interviewed post-game by Fox's Pam Oliver — after the Vikings' 37-34 win over the Packers — she commented to Peterson about the near record, "You played you heart out.  Nine yards ... nine yards.  Boy, that's got to hurt."

The jubilant Peterson looked at the reporter. "Nine yards, what?" he said incredulously.  "Nine yards what ... from breaking it?"

If A.P. was showing some false modesty, he was good.  If he was resentful at not getting another shot at running for the extra nine yards — he was not as convincing.

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The Vikings MVP candidate finished the game with 199 yards with a touchdown and racked up 2,097 yards for the season.  He joined the exclusive club of 2,000 with a run of 20-yards that pushed his tally to 2,009 yards but it was his 26-yard scamper late in the fourth quarter that set up Blair Walsh's game-winning field goal and sent his team to the playoffs for the first time in three years.


More amazing is the fact that Peterson joins Dickerson, O.J. Simpson, Terrell Davis, Barry Sanders, Jamal Lewis and Chris Johnson in the 2K club after having reconstructive knee surgery only about a year ago.

Peterson has shown he has that rare combination of speed and power, but his reaction at coming so close to breaking a treasured Hall-of-Famer's NFL record shows he has humility and a team-first attitude to boot.



Sunday, December 30, 2012

Hynoski's 'Hynocerous' TD celebration a big hit with Giants fans

Just when you thought the genteel salsa touchdown celebration of Victor Cruz was enough to entertain New York Giants fans, along comes Henry Hynoski's brutal Rhino dance.

The Giants fullback — known to Big Blue fans as "Hynocerous" — unveiled the celebratory dance after catching his first touchdown pass from Eli Manning during the Giants 42-7 blowout of the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.

While Cruz's popular dance centers around the sensual swaying of his hips, Hynoski's moves are more like a foot-stomping, horn-faced beast getting ready to charge.




A video of the fullback's dance has already gone viral and is a big hit beyond MetLife Stadium.

Too bad fans will have to wait until next season to see it live on the field again.  The Giants were eliminated from playoff contention.  At least Hynocerous took them out with a roar.

Junior dos Santos and Tim Boetsch show aftermath of UFC-155 losses

12,423 fans bought a record $3.2 million in tickets at the MGM Grand Garden to see the second meeting between Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos at the UFC-155 — and they got their money's worth.  But the heavyweight bout — which went a full five rounds — left dos Santos with a seriously beat-up face Saturday and might put him on the shelf for a while.

Velasquez — who waited over a year to reclaim his heavyweight title because of a shoulder injury — pounded his opponent pretty thoroughly and walked away with a unanimous decision.  

Later, dos Santos and Tim Boetsch — who lost to Costa Philippou after a stoppage in the third — showed off their bruised and cut faces in a photo from the hospital.



UFC president Dana white originally thought that dos Santos suffered a broken jaw in the title fight, but x-rays proved the fear was unfounded.

"I don't know if you saw [dos Santos] after the fight, but he looked terrible," White said.  "It's going to be a while until he starts training again."

It was dos Santo's first defeat since 2007 and he headed to the hospital right after the bout.

White said Velasquez is likely to fight again — probably against Alistair Overeem — while dos Santos heals.

To all you gamers out there who wince when you get blisters on your thumbs ask yourself one question after seeing this snapshot:  Do you still want to fight in the cage?

Sandy Hook community honored by Giants at pre-game ceremony

Nearly 400 students, parents and faculty members from Sandy Hook Elementary School were honorary guests at MetLife Stadium in pre-game ceremony before the New York Giants played the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.

The honored guests also included 50 members of the Wounded Warrior Project.

The 450 strong group formed two lines leading from the tunnels to the field as the players from both teams passed through — high-fiving and hugging the adoring kids.

The touching scene took place right before they joined hands and lined the perimeter of the playing field in a moment of silence to pay tribute to the 26 victims of the Newtown, Conn. school shooting.

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The special guests of honor held signs like, "We are Sandy Hook" and "A Giant thanks from Sandy Hook."



Before the ceremony the families were allowed onto the field to watch pre-game warmups and wave to  the crowd.  The school is located about 60 miles northeast of MetLife Stadium and many of the children call themselves Giants fans.  Nine chartered buses made the hour and a half drive for the festivities.

Giants quarterback Eli Manning summed up the ceremony as best he could.

"We can't help them forget," he said.  "But we can help give them something for three hours to smile about."

The Giants held up their end of the bargain and won the game, 42-7.

Better odds on Sunday: Seeing Tebow in Wildcat or Giants make playoffs?

New York football fans are faced with a big choice Sunday afternoon: Who'd you rather — the Jets or the Giants?

To many the dilemma is sort of like picking your poison but this is what the season for fans of both teams has come down to — hoping to get one last chance at seeing Tim Tebow play with Gang Green or praying that the Giants make the playoffs with the help of a miracle.

The Jets and the Giants won't be meeting on the field in their regular season finales, but they will go head-to-head on the television screen for TV ratings today.

The NFL announced its Week 17 start times last week, with the Giants-Eagles match up at MetLife Stadium (Fox) and Jets -Bills in Buffalo (CBS) both being played at 1 p.m. EST.

Both teams share a stadium, share a metro fan base and now share a TV time slot for the first time since the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur caused a scheduling switch in 2009.



It might frustrate a lot of New York fans who are accustomed to getting a six-hour double dose of bad local football every Sunday this season.  Think of clicking the remote back-and-forth for three hours like tearing off a Band-Aid — a 180-minute bandage pull instead of doubling your torture or doubling your pain.

The odds of seeing backup Tebow take a few snaps — even if he has been passed over twice for the starting quarterback in three weeks — seem far better than the defending champion Giants backing into the playoffs.

All that's holding Tebow back from entering the game is probably another buttfumble from starter Mark Sanchez or a sympathy play-call from head coach Rex Ryan.

FOUR things must happen on Sunday for the Giants to qualify for the playoffs: Winning the Eagles game AND the Redskins beating the Cowboys, the Lions beating the Bears and the Packers beating the  Vikings — all bitter division rival games.

There's a good chance we will know by 4 p.m. today if New York has no NFL team in the playoffs for the first time since 2003.  But then, the oddsmakers can get a head start laying numbers on who will still be with the teams next season.




Pinstripe Bowl turns into a Winter Wonderland

Almost 40,000 fans showed up yesterday at Yankee Stadium to watch Syracuse defeat West Virginia, 38-14, in the third annual New Era Pinstripe Bowl and — while Orange and Mountaineers fans were bursting with school pride before the game — stadium groundskeepers were busting a sweat to prepare the field.

When you think of the House That Jeter Built, you usually envision sultry summer nights with old No. 2 at shortstop — not a snowman filling in the gap between second and third.  Although there have been some flurries on more than a few of the early April Opening days.

The New York Yankees must have been pretty impressed with the job the crew did.  The team's  official Twitter feed provided this photo of the field one hour before the game Saturday afternoon and showed the amazing job the grounds crew did before the opening kickoff.



The Pinstripe Bowl is the only college bowl game played in a presumably cold weather site but snow is usually a rarity around the holidays in New York City.

If Saturday's game looked like a throwback to the Army and New York Giants home games, which ripped up the old Yankee Stadium turf, it wasn't a problem yesterday.



One guy who would agree that the groundskeepers did a good job was Syracuse running back Prince-Tyson Gulley who had 264 total yards in his team's victory.

The grounds crew at MetLife Stadium might want to take notes from Saturday's game in preperation for when Super Bowl XLVIII comes to New Jersey on Feb. 2, 2014.

There's a good chance the Meadowlands could see some of the white stuff that day.



Saturday, December 29, 2012

Giants invite over 400 of the Sandy Hook community to MetLife Stadium for pre-game honor

The New York Giants have reached out one more time to the students, families and faculty members from the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy by inviting over 400 of their "community" to play a key part in a pregame ceremony in the team's regular season finale at MetLife Stadium.

The contingent of people — families and individuals still trying to come to grips with the Newtown, Conn. shooting — will attend the game and play a key part of the festivities before the Giants face the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.

"To have that group from the Sandy Hook Elementary School and the Newtown community come down for this game with Philadelphia, it means a great deal to us, and we would certainly like to honor them," said head coach Tom Coughlin, who broke the news Friday. "The best we can do is to take each individual and play to the best of our ability and make a statement as a team as well."

Along with 50 members of the Wounded Warrior Project, the Sandy Hook contingent will form a path leading from the team tunnels to the playing field.  The Giants and Eagles will run by the two lines of honorees onto the gridiron.

Sandy Hook residents will also circle the field during the national Anthem before a moment of silence for the victims.



The Giants have already honored the 26 victims of the Dec. 14 shooting by wearing decals with the school's initials S.H.E.S on their helmets.  The school is about 60 miles northeast of MetLife Stadium.

Victor Cruz was so moved to find out one of the young victims, 6-year-old Jack Pinto, was a diehard fan of his, the wide receiver made a trip to Newtown and visited the family. The little boy was buried in  Cruz's No. 80 jersey and he has kept in touch "to see how they're doing."

"They're going to be at the game also," said the newly-selected All-Pro Cruz.  "So I'm excited to see them again, and I think it's good for them to get away a little bit and spend some time on a Sunday afternoon watching some football and getting their minds off of things a little bit."



This could be the most emotional tribute for the Sandy Hook victims by a sports organization yet.  It sure makes getting into the playoffs small in comparison.



James Johnson's buzzer beater foils Knicks 27-point comeback

The New York Knicks nearly pulled off the biggest comeback in the orange and blue's history but — after beating the Phoenix Suns with J.R. Smith's buzzer beater on Wednesday— got a taste of their own Kool Aid Friday night.

Sacramento Kings James Johnson buried a three-point shot from the top of the arc as time expired, turning the Knicks rally from a 27-point first-half deficit from historic to just plain history.

Live by the sword, die by the sword.



Johnson's trey didn't  exactly look like a play drawn up on the sidelines but it was enough to break the Knicks hearts after leading 105-103 inside Sacramento's Sleep Train Arena.

The Knicks had trailed 68-41 in the second quarter.

Isaiah Thomas made two free throws to narrow the Knick's lead to two with 33 seconds on the clock. On the ensuing drive, Jason Kidd's alley-oop to Tyson Chandler was deflected and stolen with 15 seconds left.  Thomas missed a bank shot and the Kings (10-19) got the offensive rebound and passed it around.

The game-winner didn't come on a set play but Johnson — who was 0-for-11 from 3-point range on the season — heaved up the shot just as the buzzer sounded after the frantic final seconds.

The Knicks (21-9) were without leading scorer Carmelo Anthony for the second straight game because of the hyper-extended left knee he suffered Tuesday night against the Los Angeles Lakers.

In the 20 years that the record has been kept, the  Knicks biggest comeback ever was a 26-point deficit against the Milwaukee Bucks in 2004.

"We buried ourselves in the first two quarters and then decided to defend," said Knicks head coach Mike Woodson.  "It's a game of inches.  They made the big shot at the end."

The simple lesson learned by the suddenly struggling Knicks — comebacks only count if you win.


Friday, December 28, 2012

Avery Johnson's son goes on Twitter rant about dad's firing

Avery Johnson took the high road when he addressed the media Thursday after being fired by the Brooklyn Nets.  The ex-head coach claims he never saw the firing coming and said, "This is the ownership's decision.  This is what we signed up for."

Johnson's teenage son didn't take the news as well and went thumbs-out on his Twitter account to vent his anger after the news broke that his dad had been relieved of his coaching duties by owner Mikhail Prokhorov.


The younger Johnson went on to defend his dad's reputation by tweeting:

"This is a f------Outrage.  My dad is a great coach, he just got coach of the month and they Fire him. #Smh. Completely new team he had."

Junior wasn't the only one surprised at the firing.  LeBron James echoed the son's sentiments with this tweet.


"The expectations were way too high for this team.  We didn't even have a losing record... Didn't even give my dad a full season.  #OUTRAGE," Johnson Jr. continued.




His father was fired a day after the Nets fell to .500 (14-14) after an 11-4 start to begin the season.

Johnson's release comes on the heels of the Nets All-Pro Deron Williams saying he was never comfortable playing in Johnson's style of offense and insinuating that his shooting slump was because of the system.

The fact that Williams' whining and his father's canning came so close together wasn't lost on the teenage Johnson or NBA analyst Reggie Miller who tweeted:

"So will coaching change for Nets improve Deron Williams shooting percentage??"

It sounds like the ball is in Williams' court now.

McElroy and Jets teammates hid concussion from coaches

New York Jets coaches were apparently unaware that Greg McElroy was experiencing concussion symptoms during practice this week — after getting sacked 11 times last Sunday against the San Diego Chargers — but some of his teammates did.

The Jets quarterback — who went from nursing a minor abdominal injury to being benched for Sunday's game against the Buffalo Bills — had been concealing his symptoms "for days" telling teammates about the situation but only finally going to the team on Thursday morning.

It's not uncommon for NFL players to quietly play through injuries but the alarming aspect to this story is that more than a few of his Jets teammates knew about about McElroy's serious condition after the 27-17 loss and kept silent.

"He came into my room [Christmas night] and we talked about it" receiver Clyde Gates told ESPNNew York.com. "He was hurting real bad .  I was like, 'Bro, I know, I've been down that road already.  I'm just saying you can't try to tough it out cause you going to end up hurting yourself.  You've got to let everybody know how you really feel."

McElroy finally told Jets trainer on Thursday — after experiencing headaches during a morning weightlifting session.  Head coach Rex Ryan later announced that McElroy wouldn't play this Sunday.



Guard Matt Slauson was also aware of McElroy's situation.  "He definitely has that [warrior] mentality, but it got to the point where it was scaring him," he said.

One has to take in a couple of perspectives from all the players involved to explain their actions.  Illogical and as dangerous as it may seem, the NFL culture breeds this type of reasoning.

McElroy — the one time third-string quarterback — is finally getting a shot at showing the league he is worthy of being a starter.  Unless he battled through the pain, it might be a long time before he is given this window of opportunity again.

His teammates, while showing concern for their teammate's safety, would have been breaking an unwritten code betraying a confidence if they went to the coaches about their concerns before McElroy actually did.

These are grown men fighting for their livelihoods in a violent and mostly short-lived career. The NFL has their work cut out for them if they intend to curb the rash of concussions in the league.  Apparently the players themselves aren't going to help themselves even when they are at risk.


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Sanchez will start for concussed McElroy in Jets finale

The three-ring circus that is the New York Jets brought back an old headliner when their tumbling act — otherwise known as the quarterback situation — took another bizarre and unexpected somersault.

The team discovered starting quarterback Greg McElroy had suffered a concussion in Sunday's loss to the San Diego Chargers after he experienced headaches while lifting weights Thursday morning, reports The New York Post.

Head coach Rex Ryan told reporters McElroy won't play Sunday against the Buffalo  Bills and Mark Sanchez — who McElroy replaced last week as the starter — is back in as starting quarterback.

Ryan began Thursday's press conference by saying," You're not going to believe this one."

One person who was probably shaking his head was Tim Tebow, who still has not started a game even after Sanchez's season imploded.

"I'm going to start Mark Sanchez," Ryan said.  "The reason I'm starting Mark is we have two practices and one walkthrough to get ready for Buffalo.  He's very familiar with them.  That's the reason I'm going with Mark."



Tebow proponents have already taken to the Internet blasting the decision to use an ineffective Sanchez over the underutilized Tebow in a meaningless game.  Theories about Tebow being passed over again range from the Jets afraid to see Tebow succeed and make the coaches look bad to Tebow's bags are already packed and headed to Jacksonville after the season.

McElroy was sacked 11 times during the Jets 27-17 loss and suffered an abdominal injury.  He showed no symptoms of a concussion after the game but Ryan was convinced that McElroy couldn't play this week.

"I'm not going to play him," said Ryan.  "There's no doubt. I don't care what the tests say.  We're going to err on the side of caution."

It sounds like Ryan is erring on the side of a cautionary tale.  Imagine the backlash if Tebow won.

This is another tough blow for Tebow to take and was a legitimate chance to give him a shot as a "regular quarterback."

The top-secret Wildcat offense Ryan boasted about  all preseason is still pretty much a mystery and last week Tebow was passed over for McElroy when Sanchez was benched for his five turnover performance against the Titans two weeks ago.

Now Tebow is on the outside looking in once again.

"Obviously, Tim's not happy with that as you'd expect," Ryan said.

Expect to hear "Te-bow, Te-bow" from Jets fans for the last time.


Canadiens' Gorges gets big turnout for Twitter hockey game

The NHL lockout didn't stop one player from getting in some ice time even if it meant going to his Twitter account to round up a few players.

Montreal Canadiens defenseman Josh Gorges did just that and — after tweeting that he was scratching together a pick-up hockey game in the Verdun section of the city — the outdoor rink filled up with players of all ages and skill levels hoping to get a chance to skate with the NHL star.

The 28-year-old Gorges' open invitation to his followers on the social network made Wednesday's Boxing Day holiday extra special to a lot of NHL-hungry fans.

If the skate reminded him of casual pond hockey games in the past, the jeans and parka clad Gorges didn't seem to mind.

"I haven't played outdoors in a long time," Gorges told reporters.  "But I figured we've got some time  and I've got nothing else to do."



Gorges had been hinting about the upcoming game in messages sent out to his 23,000 followers on Twitter.  A few hours before the impromptu game, he joked that he might be slower than usual because of a big Christmas dinner the night before.



The NHL lockout is in its 103rd day.

At least one hockey star remembered his roots. Way to go, eh.


Chad Johnson contacts FBI to get to bottom of sex tape leak

Chad Johnson has admitted his role in a sex tape made with two tattooed female friends that is making the Internet rounds but the former NFL star said the video was meant to be private and has now contacted the FBI to find out who leaked the hotel room romp.

Sources told TMZ that Johnson is furious about the 3-year-old sex tape going public and believes the video was hacked from his phone.  He wants the Feds to probe how the X-rated footage made it into cyberspace after he claimed he had nothing to do with its release.

TMZ reports that Johnson (formally known as Chad Ochocinco) is still waiting for a response from the FBI.



After the video went viral, the NFL wideout ran a post pattern straight to a lawyer (who deals specifically with cyber crimes) to draft a cease-and-desist letter in order to get the cheesy tape yanked from the web.

The 34-year-old football player-turned-reality-TV-star was released by the Dolphins after his 41-day marriage to Evelyn Lozada was rocked by domestic violence charges over the summer.

Johnson once cracked that he would "go into porn" if he wasn't playing in the NFL.  Maybe this was his audition tape.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Tebow thinks he was misunderstood by Rex Ryan about Wildcat

http://bcove.me/lb9doekqTim Tebow pulled an audible Wednesday and attempted to clarify any reports that he asked out of the Wildcat offense before Sunday's loss to the San Diego Chargers.  During the game, Tebow stood on the New York Jets sideline while Rex Ryan replaced him with Jeremy Kerley in the Wildcat formation.

Contrary to reports, Tebow denied asking out of the Wildcat during a meeting with his head coach last Tuesday, shortly after he found out he would not be the starter against the Chargers.

The backup quarterback admitted that he did express his disappointment in the decision today for the first time in a "man-to-man" talk with Ryan — the first of which Tebow's had all year.

Tebow told Ryan he wanted to play "regular quarterback,' something he reiterated several times.

During the week leading up to the Chargers game, Tebow said he and Ryan spoke little and — after seeing Kerley get increased Wildcat snaps in practice on Thursday — the unhappy quarterback sought out Ryan to clear the air after he only had a few Wildcat reps that day.

On Friday, Tebow was finally able to meet with Ryan and talk.

"I said, 'yeah, I'm frustrated with this,' absolutely and he knew that, he knew that I was frustrated by me saying it," Tebow said.  "But I didn't ask out, or say I wouldn't do anything."

Tebow added: "(a possible misunderstanding) is why I expressed back to him Friday, I said, 'Coach, you still know I'll do anything for this team, right? I'll do whatever.  He appreciated that, I think he knew that but I think he appreciated me going back and saying it."



The media analysts who bashed Tebow's character and labeled him a "quitter" because he wasn't named the starter was a little like putting verbal coal in Tebow's Christmas stocking.

Miami Dolphins new logo looks oddly like the weather map

Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross and CEO Mike Dee said they would be updating the team's uniforms and logo for the 2013-14 season.  Fans were excited about getting new look but who knew that the billionaire Ross would take it to this extreme.

While Fins fans might be thrilled at the Dolphins overhaul, people in the northeast are rightfully a little peeved at the storm that looks like Flipper and will be mucking things up for the next few days.

Maybe it's just a ploy to get the snowbirds down to South Beach.

Take a look at New York's weather for the next few days and the logo that is floating around cyberspace and judge for yourself.

Coincidence?  Jets fans don't think so.





It isn't clear how much the Dolphins paid some graphic designer to update their look, but a little credit should be given to Mother Nature and the Weather Channel.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Virginia Tech honoring Newtown shooting victims with 'Prevail' decal on helmets

The Virginia Tech football team will be wearing decals on their helmets that read "Prevail," as a tribute to the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

The gesture comes from a school that understands the senseless loss of life firsthand.  In 2007, a gunman killed 32 students on Tech's Blacksburg campus.

The decal will also feature the number 58 — the combined murder count from both shootings.



The VT football will wear the stickers Friday on their plum-colored helmets in the Russell Athletic Bowl against Rutgers in Orlando.  The ribbon's design — half green and half orange with the initials "VT" and "SH" — is a mix of Virginia Tech's and Sandy Hook's school colors.


Chad Johnson admits role in sex tape that has gone viral

Former NFL star Chad Johnson has admitted to being the man in a sex tape co-starring two female friends making the Internet rounds but claims he didn't leak it to a website.

Johnson acknowledges  ... a sex tape which appears to feature the former Miami Dolphin — along with two women — is real — but he insists he never wanted the video to go public, reports TMZ.

The former All-Pro told TMZ he had no idea how the tape — which was shot three years ago in a Florida hotel room — was leaked to the Internet and said he is not happy that it has gone viral.



So far the video has only made it into cyberspace in bits and pieces — although the entire tape is "substantial in length."   An R-rated snippet can be seen at missjia.com.

Johnson has been looking to hook up with an NFL team since being released by the Dolphins after being arrested for an domestic incident with his ex-wife Evelyn Lozada over the summer.

Lozada confirmed that the sex tape released Christmas morning is of Johnson but said the video is "old news."

In his first press conference with the Dolphins in August, Johnson was asked what he would be doing if he wasn't playing football.  The wide receiver replied, "I was thinking about going into porn.  It's not funny.  I got to earn a living."

He is now exploring his legal options in hopes of having the tape removed from the website.


R.I.P. Jack Klugman, best known as sportswriter Oscar Madison

Actor Jack Klugman, best known for his characterization of New York sportswriter Oscar Madison in TV's "The Odd Couple," passed away Monday at the age of 90.

The esteemed actor had been sick for a while but died quietly with his two sons and wife at his Northridge, Ca. home.

Klugman was lauded as a great character actor who debuted on Broadway in "Golden Boy" and made his mark as a tough juror in the gripping film "12 Angry Men" before appearing on several episodes of "The Twilight Zone" and starring in "Quincy, M.E.."

The Philadelphia native is most associated with — and became most famous for  — his partnership with Tony Randall on the TV comedy series "The Odd Couple" which ran from 1970-75.

Klugman played the messy half of two men sharing a Park Avenue Manhattan apartment with Randall playing his neat-freak, nose-honking roommate Felix Unger who left us with these immortal sitcom words, "Oscar, Oscar Oscar."

As Madison, the slovenly, cigar-chomping divorced sportswriter for a New York daily newspaper, Klugman made the profession look sexy and fun. Where else could a paunchy, middle aged-guy in Hagger slacks bounce from the Garden to Shea with a quick jaunt to Belmont and still find time to hook up with stewardesses and models nearly half his age.

It was the end of a romantic era of sports in New York — when reporters actually had to be at the game to see it —  and Oscar was the quintessential sportswriter — or at least we believed so.



In real life, there was no ESPN, Internet or screaming heads relaying sports to the public — only the hard-nosed reporting of guys like Dick Young, Red Smith and Phil Pepe as your only link to the sports world.

Rex Ryan clams up about Tebow drama

Rex Ryan wasn't in a Christmas giving mood Monday when he sidestepped reporters' questions about whether or not quarterback Tim Tebow actually refused to play in the Wildcat formation during the New York Jets loss to the San Diego Chargers on Sunday.

During a 20-minute conference call with reporters, the would not divulge any specifics about Tebow's reaction to being passed over as starter for Greg McElroy except to say his Wildcat quarterback was "disappointed."

Ryan's answers didn't confirm or deny if Tebow had demanded his exclusion in any Wildcat schemes on Sunday and he danced around the questions regarding Tebow's status on the team.

Maybe the head coach was taking this whole "Silent Night" thing a little too seriously.

"He is a competitor and he was disappointed," Ryan said.  "He was disappointed that he was not named the starter."

Even with Tebow's limited role this season, yesterday's interview still centered on the polarizing quarterback and if he asked out of the Wildcat offense.



According to various sources, Tebow was irked when Ryan announced he was passing him up for McElroy last Tuesday.  The angry quarterback voiced his frustration to Ryan then didn't speak to his head coach for three days.  On Friday, Tebow finally told Ryan he was available for any role the team deemed him nessessary for.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Eli is overwhelmed and understated after Ravens loss

Eli Manning might want to change his nickname from "Easy" to "Woozy" after the consecutive beatdowns the New York Giants quarterback has gone through over the past two weeks.

Last Sunday's 34-0 blowout by the Atlanta Falcons was compounded by yesterday's ugly 33-14 loss to the Baltimore Ravens which left the Giants signal caller looking for more than an "aw, shucks" to describe the futility.

"It's one thing to lose, it's one thing to be in there and something happens at the end of the game," said a  dejected Manning after the game.  "But to not give yourself a chance , to get down early and gain no momentum, get no spark to get us going , and just consistently not make the plays that are there and not execute to our ability, can be confusing."

Manning, who finished the Ravens game going 14-of-28 for 150 yards with a meaningless TD pass in the closing minutes, stated the obvious after the debacle.

"We haven't played the style of football that we needed to get into the playoffs, to win the division," said Manning.  "And when you're not playing your best, teams come out and embarrass you.

"It's disappointing."



He was almost as understated about the Giants' pride as he was about the Ravens bruising defense.

"We knew we had to play our best football at the end of the season to get into the playoffs," Manning said.  "And we haven't done that over these last few weeks."

"They [the Ravens] did a good job getting some pressure," Manning admitted.  'I had to move around, try to buy some time and give the guys a chance to get open downfield, and (the Ravens) had good coverages, good calls and better play than we did."

Some pressure?  It looked like Manning had a crow in his face all day.

Jeter and dad watch 'Melo take over fourth quarter at MSG

Yep, that was Derek Jeter and his dad, Charles, sitting courtside at Madison Square Garden watching Carmelo Anthony take over the fourth quarter and leading the New York Knicks to a come-from-behind victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday ... well, most of it.

Jeter — whom it seems hasn't been spotted at the Garden since dating former Miss Universe Lara Dutta (remember her) and sporting a fade haircut— watched New York's best team du jour deliver some much-needed holiday cheer with the 94-91 win although he and his dad split before the final buzzer.



The New York Yankees Captain hasn't been seen much since his so-called "fat phase" and was still wearing a boot on his surgically-repaired left ankle Sunday.  But he looked fit and happy as he watched 'Melo score most of his 19 fourth-quarter points — including the Knicks' final 12 in the last 3:04  — before finishing with a team-high 33.

Jeter might have only heard the chants of M-V-P ringing out for Anthony — as the Knicks forward drained six free-throws in the final 31 seconds of the game — since the Yankees shortstop was already hobbling out of the arena before taking any chance at getting jostled during the mad crush of exiting fans.



Seeing Jeter looking healthy, slim and out and about is a good sign for the upcoming season and an early present under the tree for Yankees fans.

Ladies look out.


Sunday, December 23, 2012

Kyle Busch's Family Christmas Card 2012 gets kind of creepy

Kyle Busch took one last shot at pleasing Santa this year before the fat man left a can of motor oil in his stocking.

NASCAR's bad boy enlisted a crew to shoot a video of his wife, Samantha, and their three adorable little dogs making the Busch Family Christmas Card 2012.

The clip shows Samantha giving her husband the Ed Grimley look before the couple dons some ugly elf costumes.  Well, she looks pretty sexy in her green wig.

Things get a little creepy when she starts tugging at him with a huge candy cane in front of a garish Santa-themed backdrop.



Is it enough to get off the naughty list?

Did I mention the dogs are adorable.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Jets show support for Rex Ryan in player poll

If it was up to the New York Jets players, Rex Ryan will still be standing on the team's sidelines next season — and you can put their names to it.

In an informal poll of players by Mark Cannizzaro of The New York Post,  Gang Green stands behind their head coach despite the missing the playoffs for the second season in a row.

In his "on-and-off-the-record" interviews with nearly half the players on the roster, Cannizzaro concluded that they all believe Rex must stay.

He writes:

While there is a moderate undercurrent among this cross-section of offensive players who harbor some resentment about Ryan’s devotion to his defense, believing the offensive side of the ball is sometimes neglected, we could not find a single player who flat-out wants Ryan to be fired.


To the contrary, some players said they respect Ryan more for the way he has kept the locker room from coming unglued the way it did at the end of last season when the Jets were also faced with playoff elimination.

"I feel like he's handled himself appropriately — with humility," said linebacker Bart Scott.  "Guys haven't packed it in.  You would be able to see if guys have packed it in and they haven't.  Nobody has imploded, nobody has turned on each other.  That's a reflection of the respect everyone has for him."



Ryan — who was voted the most over-rated coach in the NFL earlier in the season — has withstood a constant barrage of issues this season.

Chad Johnson drops $8K on pair of Marty McFly shoes

It looks like Christmas came a little early this year for former NFL star Chad Johnson.

First, his estranged wife Evelyn Lozada dropped the no-contact order against him a few days ago — stemming a no contest plea to misdemeanor battery charges back in September — and yesterday, Johnson was lucky enough to buy himself an early holiday gift — a pair of Marty McFly shoes from "Back to the Future."

Johnson tweeted a photo of the shoes — with the words "END OF THE WORLD SHOE, Going Out In Style The 8-5 Way" on little signs.

He boasted that he had talked the store down to $8,000 for the coveted sneaker-boots from the original asking price of $10K.

Not a bad find for the self-admitted shoe collector.  But probably not the most sensible idea for an unemployed NFL player with declining skills going through a divorce.



Considering the first pair of McFlys went for $37,500 (including platinum case) during a charity auction for the Michael J.Fox Foundation for Parkinsons Disease last year maybe, in hindsight, the old Ochocinco's splurge could be a sound investment.

Johnson found the collectible shoes at ATC Miami — a high-end sneaker shop in Miami Beach — and decided he HAD to have then, reports TMZ.



Nike made only 1,500 pairs of the replica sneaks and it isn't clear if Johnson will be wearing them while pounding the pavement looking for a tryout.

One thing is for sure, Johnson would probably like to go Back to the Past — at least before the summer when he still wore a Miami Dolphins jersey and the start of his legal troubles began.

Hoping the shoes bring luck in the future though.


Friday, December 21, 2012

Cruz, 'Melo & CP3 join Hollywood stars to make video calling for end of gun violence

One week after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting tragedy, a few sports stars joined up with over two dozen A-list celebrities to make a video calling for the end of gun violence.

New York Giants receiver Victor Cruz, New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony and Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul are among the personalities in the video titled "Demand A Plan to End Gun Violence."

Coincidentally or not, it was released the same day NRA vice president Wayne LaPierre blamed Hollywood for promoting violence.


The actors, musicians and athletes star in the 80-second black-and-white clip that is sure to go viral. Each person lists the scenes of some of the worst shootings in recent U.S. history starting at Columbine High School, the Aurora, Colo. movie theater and ending at Newtown, Conn..

Among the various celebrities speaking in the video are Beyonce, Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Aniston, Paul Rudd, Julianne Moore, John Hamm, Will Ferrell, Chris Rock and Steve Carell.






The Demand A Plan campaign is run by Mayors Against Illegal Guns, co-chaired by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Cruz took some time to offer comfort in the Newtown shooting by visiting the family of slain 6-year-old Jack Pinto — who said the Giants receiver was his favorite player.

Every little bit helps.

Club DJs still torturing Kris Humphries with Kanye rhymes

It's bad enough that Kris Humphries has to endure the the Barclays Center boo-birds but now the Nets forward's ears are being bombarded by the rap of Kanye West every time he enters a nightclub to unwind.

Club deejays seem to enjoy torturing Humphries with the vocal stylings of his ex-wife Kim Kardashian's new paramour and it's apparently affecting his game —off the court.

Humphries' futility with the ladies was witnessed Wednesday night at the Manhattan hotspot WiP — you might remember it as the place Tony Parker almost lost an eye during the infamous Drake-Chris Brown brawl — where he went after the New York Knicks blew out the Nets at Madison Square Garden.

Humphries was chatting up some women and trying to score a few digits while an uninterrupted stream of West's music blared throughout the club, said a source.

"He was trying to talk to every girl in there and was getting turned down by every girl he spoke to," an eyewitness told the New York Daily News' Confidential.



The source said the two deejays, Chuck Barrett and Scram Jones, piled on the Kanye beats and by the time they played "Mercy" and "Clique," Humphries had had enough.

"He took a bottle of Patron that he didn't pay for, put it in front of his crotch and dumped the entire thing on the floor, because he was wasted and tired of Kanye songs," said the witness.  "Not only was he acting like he was peeing the bottle out, he insisted on staying."

The wear and tear of an NBA season must be nothing compared to the travails of a 72-day marriage to Kardashian and the drawn-out divorce they are still embroiled in but still, not worth pissing away a good bottle of tequila.



Last month, reports Confidential, Humphries tried to pick up DJ Kalkutta, after another Nets loss, while she was spinning a West tune — now that's sad.

"He emailed a couple of times," said the vinyl spinner. "But I never answered."

Sadder yet.

A season with the Kardashians, a mid-season Nets collapse and an unending loop of Kanye.  Can't this poor guy get a break.



Antonio Pierce has doubts about Giants' mental toughness

The New York Giants are coming off one of their worst losses in recent memory — a humiliating 34-0 beatdown by the Atlanta Falcons — and have fallen into a three-way tie looking up at the Cowboys and Redskins for first place in the NFC East.

Nevertheless, the team still insists it is at its best when their backs against the wall.  At least that's what they publicly say citing last season's playoff run and Super Bowl victory as proof.

Now former Giants linebacker and current ESPN analyst Antonio Pierce says the Giants past success had to do more with their heads than their backs.

"I really think they are a team that's mentally drained right now," Pierce said of the Giants team that will look to save its season with a must win against the Ravens in Baltimore on Sunday.

"Coach [Tom] Coughlin  is preaching mental toughness, and I don't know if they can say that have that right now.  They are a team that is not as strong as in years past, as far as being mentally tough."



Pierce says Big Blue might be relying on last season's playoff run, after they reeled off a six-game win streak culminating with the victory over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLVI, as some sort of blueprint for doing it again.

In September, Pierce said the Giants were basically overlooked last season because they came out of nowhere.  This season they have a shiny Lombardi Trophy as a bullseye on their jerseys.

The "we can turn it on when it counts" philosophy doesn't jive with Pierce.

"My concern with the Giants is them constantly talking about what they've done in the past," said Pierce, who played on the 2007 Super Bowl championship team.  "They are looking in the rear-view mirror, thinking they can always rely on that.  Our backs re against the wall, this is the way we like it, and after [Sunday's] performance — an embarrassing, slap-in-the-face loss — I didn't see any players out there that played like everything really mattered at the time."

Pierce pinpointed the once ferocious defense as the main culprit for the Giants' shortcomings and named names.

"Opponents studied and figure out ways to block these guys and slow them up," he said.  "So, I don't see the defensive coordinator [Perry Fewell] being as creative, coming up with different designs to free them up."

The ex-Giant didn't go easy on his former teammates either.

"Honestly, [Justin] Tuck has not been Tuck for three years now.  and Osi [Umenyiora] is a situational pass-rusher.  He comes in on the third down and he makes plays.  But, for the most part as a group, they are being asked to make plays without any more creativity."

The Ravens are in the same boat as the Giants and looking to regroup after collapsing in the second half of the season.

"You come off back-to-back years without being in the playoffs and then you win a Super Bowl and things change," said Pierce.  "Every year with coach Coughlin we had a different slogan.  This year's team has to stick to that and not regurgitate what they've been able to do in the past."

Thursday, December 20, 2012

NY marathoners can finally get refund on cancelled race

New York City Marathon runners can finally receive a refund of their entry fee after this year's race was canceled in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.

Officials of the ING NYC Marathon told runners after the race was called off last month that they had a no-refund policy but had not made a final decision what to do because of the unusual circumstances.

Now, the race organizer, the New York Road Runners Club, told runners Thursday that they had three options to choose from — one of them being a refund.

Runners can also go for a guaranteed spot in the 2013, 2014 or 2015 marathon.  They would have to pay the entry fee again but at the 2012 rate.

The third choice is accepting a spot in March's NYC half-marathon.



Costs this year ranged from $216-$347 and the refund only applies to runners who had not withdrawn before Oct. 24..  There is an $11 processing fee.

Hurricane Sandy swept through the New York City area six days before the race was scheduled.  Officials of the NYRRC and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg dragged their feet on making a decision about canceling or postponing the race while area residents cleaned up after the devastating storm which left thousands homeless.

 Frustrated runners — some who travelled long distances for the 26-mile race — were angered after the marathon was finally called off less than 48 hours before the race was going to start.

An ad-hoc alternative race was held in Central Park and other areas near New York.

McKnight: Fans' boos helped push Ryan to bench Sanchez

New York Jets running back Joe McKnight said he believes the lack of fan support for Mark Sanchez could have possibly played a big role in the decision by Rex Ryan to bench his starting quarterback.

And not in the way you would think.  McKnight thinks his teammate got rattled by the din of boos in the stadium and it affected his play on the field.

"I think it did," McKnight said Wednesday. "Any time you're the starting quarterback and you're on the football field and you're trying to call plays and you got the people that are supposed to be rooting for you screaming for the other quarterback, that's kind of frustrating.  That kind of takes you out of the game.  And I think that's kind of made it tough for the coaches to make their decision."



While the chants of "Te-bow, Te-bow" might have hindered Sanchez's performance on the field, it did nothing to bolster Tim Tebow's reputation with the head coach.  On Tuesday, Ryan chose third-string QB Greg McElroy over the choice of the people to start Sunday's game against the San Diego Chargers.

McKnight might have more of a special kinship with Sanchez than the rest of the team.  They played together at USC and McKnight has always had his buddy's back.




CC Sabathia really wants a 'Doc McStuffins' doll for Xmas

Someone tell Brian Cashman that the return of Mariano Rivera and the acquisition of Kevin Youkilis as Christmas gifts for CC Sabathia just won't do.

Those two things are only stocking stuffers compared to what the New York Yankees big lefty really wants — a 'Doc McStuffins' doll.

Preschoolers seem to be turning the Disney TV show's animated star into this year's Elmo (minus the rap sheet) and the dolls are about as rare as an A-Rod hit in the playoffs.

And if you are a millionaire major league star and still striking out at the toy store,  fans might want to rethink snagging one of the Doc McStuffins "Time for your Checkup" doll or her plush friend Lambie before they promise one to their kid.

"You can't find them anywhere," CC's wife, Amber, told the New York Daily News. "We were at Toys 'R' Us asking them to look in the back."



Facebook and Twitter have been overrun with desperate shoppers trying to locate the coveted toys before their kids wake up Christmas morning with tears in their eyes.  The $34.99 doll is fetching up to $130 on the social websites.



"It is almost impossible to find Doc McStuffins," said Gerrick Johnson, an analyst at BMO Capital Markets. "My guess is that they didn't have a lot of production lined up for the first year run."

CC might better off shopping for a Catcher McStuffins.  He's going to need a new battery-mate and it might be easier to find.


Derek Jeter reaches out to mother of slain Sandy Hook teacher

Derek Jeter made a special phone call to the mother of slain Newtown teacher, Victoria Soto, just hours after Donna Soto laid her daughter to rest Wednesday.

The New York Yankees star made the surprise call to Donna Soto — who said Jeter was her daughter's favorite player — after saying, "Vicki loved the Yankees" as part of her eulogy.

The 27-year-old Vicki Soto was killed Friday as she shielded her first-grade students from the gunman who killed 25 other people at the Sandy Hook Elementary School last Friday.  She is being hailed as a true lifesaver for her selfless action.

"Vicki loved the Yankees — that was part of her eulogy," her cousin James Wiltsie said Wednesday night.  "No one in the family reached out, so (Jeter) must have heard about it and ... reached out," reported the New York Daily News.



Wiltsie would not give details of the conversation but did say Vicki's mom was spiritually uplifted after hearing Jeter's voice.

"It was a surprise and unexpected.  Donna was ecstatic over it and very happy.  She spoke to him for quite some time," he said.  "Nothing is going to fix the fact that she had to bury her daughter today.  But I'm happy that it brought some comfort to know that people recognize Vicki as a hero."

Vicki's sister Carlee tweeted about the family's excitement and appreciation.

"Derek Jeter just called my mom!!!!! Thanks Vicki, she needs it thank you @yankees this meant a lot to my mother and all of us."

It was probably just a few moments of the the rehabbing Yankee Captain's time but you can't deny the gesture went a long way in the healing process.  And he did it in typical Jeter style — without any fanfare.

It can't be easy cold calling a grieving family whom you've never met before.  But it seems to be part of Jeter's nature to help others — especially when it involves kids.  His Turn 2 Foundation rewards students who have achieved academic excellence and shown positive behavior.

This shows he hasn't forgotten the teachers either.

A Yankees spokesman told the Daily News Wednesday night that it couldn't confirm the call.



Fifty Cent shows support at boxing benefit for Hurricane Sandy

Fifty Cent showed up at a boxing card inside Manhattan's historic Roseland Ballroom to benefit the victims of Hurricane Sandy Wednesday night.

The famous rapper and aspiring boxing promoter sat ringside sporting a New York Knicks cap and caught some of the fights on an undercard filled with up-and-coming Brooklyn fighters.

The special edition of Broadway Boxing featured a silent auction featuring sports memorabilia to help raise money for the storm-shattered boroughs of New York City.



There was a moment of silence and the bell rang a symbolic ten times to pay tribute to the victims of Sandy, the victims of the Newtown shooting and boxing personalities who passed away over the past year.

Fifty, who has been exploring the boxing promotion game on his own since having a falling out with Floyd Mayweather Jr., had to be happy with the action he saw in the ring.



The main event featured light heavyweight Will "Power" Rosinsky (17-2-0, 9 KOs) winning a disputed unanimous decision over Otis Griffin (24-11-2, 10 KOs).  It was Rosinsky's first fight since losing to Kelly Pavlik on HBO in July.

"We are going to close our 2012 Broadway Boxing season with one of our strongest cards of the year," said promoter Lou DiBella. "In addition to the great card we raised money for Hurricane Sandy relief."

Maybe Fiddy found a few new boxers for his new stable as well.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Tebow and actress girlfriend Camilla Belle have reportedly split up

It looks like Cupid has pulled a Rex Ryan on Tim Tebow and benched the backup quarterback in the love department.

A day after the New York Jets head coach dimmed the lights of Tebow's football career by replacing the Wildcat quarterback with third-string QB Greg McElroy, US Weekly reports that Tebow and his actress girlfriend, Camilla Belle, have called it quits.

The supposedly match made in heaven ended after seven months of bliss.

A source told US Weekly, the pair "Just didn't work out."



The Jets backup quarterback and the "10,000 BC" actress met at the Met Ball in May and had been quietly dating ever since.  They were spotted last month happily bowling together in Jacksonville, Fla. when the Jets were in town to face the Jaguars.

In Touch magazine reported earlier this month that Tebow had introduced Belle to his parents who had given their blessing to the relationship.

"His mom, Pam, like that Camilla comes from a strict Catholic family, and loves that she does so much work with a children's charity," reported the magazine.  "Pam thinks Camilla could be the girl Tim has been waiting for."

Tebow has been linked to Glee actress Diana Agron and singer Taylor Swift in the past.

New Mets prospect apologizes for anti-gay slur

New Mets prospect Noah Synderaard — acquired from the Toronto Blue Jays in the R.A. Dickey trade — has already mastered the fine art of heading off the New York media before they get a chance to splatter a misstep all over the back pages.

Yesterday, when the righthanded pitcher was asked to comment during a conference call where he was introduced — along with catcher Travis d'Arnaud and John Buck — as the newest members of the Mets.

 Syndergaard, not wasting any time,  immediately apologized for an anti-gay remark he posted on Twitter last week, calling it "a poor attempt at humor."

The 20-year-old Syndergaard tweeted to the account of fellow minor leaguer Dayton Marze this tweet on Dec. 9.:

"@DMarze89 nice crocs f-- lol."

The tweet no longer appears on Syndergaard's timeline.



"I had a little mishap on Twitter about a month ago, and it was just brought to my attention this morning," Syndergaard said during the Tuesday conference call.

"I'd just like to apologize for anything that was said.  A buddy and I were having a little conversation.  I had a poor attempt at humor and an even worse attempt at using a term I shouldn't have used.  I hope I didn't offend anybody.  I'm really sorry my first introduction to being a New York Met had to be like this."

Syndergarrd — the No. 3 rated prospect in the Blue Jays' farm system — was a crucial part off the deal that sent NL Cy Young winner Dickey, Josh Thole and Mike Nickeas to Toronto.



Welcome to New York newbie.  Just watch what you say, do or tweet.

MMA fighter Ray Elbe wants to sell photos of busted joint

You might want to file this under the Thanks, but no thanks department.

Ray Elbe — the MMA fighter who fractured his penis while having sex — is trying to pawn off snapshots of the busted appendage to help cover his massive medical bills.

TMZ reported that sources told them the former "Ultimate Fighter" contestant TOOK PHOTOS of his mangled manhood after his GF snapped it in half during a spirited love-making session.

Elbe not only went public with the story, now he wants to put put the prix pix on the market.



It was reported that Elbe's member split open  ... sending blood all over his room.  He was rushed to a nearby hospital where doctors stitched up the damaged member.

Elbe has reportedly racked up thousands of dollars in medical costs and TMZ said the fighter is actively trying to pawn off the snapshots to various media outlets so he can pay for the expensive treatment.

It is unclear if Elbe has found a buyer yet, but TMZ is asking readers to take a survey to see if they would be interested in seeing the grisly pictures.

Providence Friars get a change of color in Sandy Hook tribute

The tributes to the Newtown shooting victims continue to pour in from various schools and professional sports teams.  Gestures like writing the names of the 26 victims on sports equipment and moments of silence before games have become commonplace since last Friday's tragedy.

The Providence College Friars upped their tribute to another level Tuesday and changed the colors of their uniforms with the words "Sandy Hook" printed on the back of each jersey.

Instead of their normal black and white uniforms, Providence coach Ed Cooley ordered special green and white game uniforms.  Green and white are the colors of Sandy Hook Elementary School, where 20 children and six adults were murdered by a gunman.



Cooley got the idea while watching the news Sunday night and immediately called the school's Nike representative.  He said he wanted to get the uniforms to Providence in time for Tuesday's game against Colgate.

The Big East coach used to coach at Fairfield University, which is in the same county as Newtown, Connecticut.

"I wanted to do something to honor those victims," said Cooley.  "It made me feel really, really special that that was able to happen."



Cooley plans on sending the special jerseys to the families of the victims.

"If we can show the people there that we're thinking of them," he said, "I hope we helped."

Oh yeah, Providence beat visiting Colgate, 79-45.