Archive for January 22nd, 2007

Monday, January 22nd, 2007

RJ goes under the knife

Knicks Rumors & NewsNets Rumors & News

Despite averaging 16.1 points per game this year and dropping 21 on the Knicks on Friday, Richard Jefferson has decided to succumb to the pain he’s been playing with for most of the season and undergo arthroscopic surgery on his injured right ankle. The ankle has been a problem since Jefferson landed awkwardly on Shaquille O’Neal’s foot during a November 10th game.

The Nets have already lost starting power forward Nenad Krstic for the season with a torn ACL, and now will be without their third leading scorer for approximately six weeks. The Nets, likely emboldened by their win at Madison Square Garden on Friday, are taking the risk that they’ll be able to hold off the rest of the Atlantic Division in the meanwhile, and RJ will return to the lineup in time for a run into the playoffs. For the rest of the teams in the Atlantic Division – including the Knicks – the next six weeks represent an opportunity to gain ground on the depleted division …

Asante: one foot out the door?

Giants Rumors & NewsJets Rumors & News

From Kevin Manahan of the Newark Star Ledger:

“‘We’ve talked about a new contract,’ [Patriots cornerback Asante] Samuel said last week. ‘What they offered isn’t even worth discussing. It’s disappointing. You want to believe they know what you’ve done, so you hope for the best, but you end up feeling underappreciated. You feel disrespected, especially how they come at you with so much negative stuff.

‘I took it personally, at first. You’d think I would have been around this team long enough to realize it’s all about business.’

The Giants and Jets, looking to improve their secondaries, could make bids for Samuel.”

Cubs close in on Cliffy

Mets Rumors & News

Despite a rumor that Cliff Floyd was considering a deal with the Pittsburgh Pirates, and a recent report that Chicago would be unable to add Floyd’s salary to the payroll without dumping right fielder Jacque Jones first, the AP is now reporting that the Cubs are nearing an agreement on a one-year contract that would bring the injury-prone left fielder home to his native Chicago.

The AP speculate that Floyd would serve as a backup outfielder with Alfonso Soriano in center and Matt Murton and Jacque Jones in the corners, but that arrangement is unlikely to last if Jones’s rocky relationship with the fans at Wrigley persists. Floyd himself could also force manager Lou Piniella’s hand if the lefty slugger comes anywhere near his form of 2005, when a healthy Floyd appeared in 150 games, swatting 34 homers with 98 RBIs.

Utley sees big raise

Mets Rumors & News

While the Mets boast a dynamic young tandem on the left side of the infield in shortstop Jose Reyes and third baseman David Wright, the NL East rival Phillies possess a young right side that’s equally formidable – if not more so. Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard won the National Leagues Most Valuable Player award in 2006, and second baseman Chase Utley is coming off a year in which he compiled a 35-game hitting streak – the longest such streak among second basemen in major league history, and tied for 10th longest all-time.

Now the Phillies have locked up Utley to a seven-year, $85 million deal. According to the AP, only Albert Pujols has received a seven-year deal after just three years of major league service time. Last August, the Mets signed Wright and Reyes to six and four year extensions respectively. In comparison to the deal given to Utley, Wright’s $55 million over six years looks like a bargain, and Reyes’s price …

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