Archive for March 2nd, 2007


Friday, March 2nd, 2007

From One Mullet To Another: Melrose Rips Jagr

Rangers Rumors & News

ESPN analyst Barry Melrose on Rangers captain Jaromir Jagr, and the prospect of the All-Star being shopped around the league in the offseason:

No one wants Jaromir Jagr – with what he makes and what he gives you. It’s not like he’s taking teams to Stanley Cup finals. Washington was gonna build their franchise around him and look what happened there. Same thing with New York and look what’s happened. He’s a one-dimensional player who’s on the last legs of his career, making a ton of money, and not a winner….You know what the New York Rangers did making him captain? It’s like when you’re in Pee Wee and you’ve got a bunch of 12-year-olds and you make the best player the captain, that’s all the Rangers did. Jaromir Jagr is not a leader. He is – he was a great offensive player.

Wow, bit harsh, Barry…

Mets Rumors & News

Via John Harper in the New York Daily News:

The slights keep coming for the Mets. It was one thing for Jimmy Rollins to declare his Phillies, those perennial underachievers, as the team to beat in the National League East this season. Now Steve Phillips, the former Mets GM, is all over ESPN in his gig as baseball analyst picking the Mets to finish third in their division.

Has a team that won 97 games and ran away with the division title ever been shown less respect?

Over at SNY.tv, Marc Raimondi wonders aloud whether Phillips comments aren’t just sour grapes over being fired by the organization in 2003, and whether Phillips should even be permitted to analyze his former team given his bias.

Meanwhile, Harper goes on in his column to discuss Mets COO Jeff Wilpon’s response to Phillips’ salvo, and sheds some light on the Amazin’s offseason plans that went awry:

Wilpon admitted the Mets’ winter plan, formulated by GM Omar Minaya, was built around trying to acquire Daisuke …

Joey a Jet?

Jets Rumors & News

Via John Clayton’s blog on ESPN.com:

Jets eye Joey: Don’t be surprised to see if the Jets try to sign linebacker Joey Porter. They were interested enough to talk to Pittsburgh about him in a trade. Plus, the Jets decided at the last minute to keep defensive end Kimo von Oehlhoffen, Porter’s former teammate. With the possibility of the Jets cutting linebacker Eric Barton, Porter might be an interesting option in New York.

Turner, Thomas Are Tempting, But Unlikely

Jets Rumors & News

Mark Cannizzaro of the New York Post takes a look at some free agent possibilities for the New York Jets. He focuses on the flashiest pair of the bunch, San Diego running back Michael Turner, and Ravens linebacker Adalius Thomas. The Jets covet both, but are unlikely to acquire either.

Signing Turner would mean the Jets would have to compensate the Chargers to the tune of a first and third round draft pick – something most teams in the league are loathe to do. It’s possible that Team Tangini could also pursue a trade for Turner, however the Chargers’ asking price is likely to be equally hefty.

Similarly, while Thomas would fit nicely in the Jets’ 3-4 scheme, and was an impact player last season with 11 sacks, his price tag is expected to soar through the roof, and thus far the current Jets’ regime as eschewed aggressive pursuits of those types of players.

Cannizzaro thinks it’s more likely that Gang Green will wade cautiously into the free agent market, perhaps …

Giants, Jets Ready For Free Agency

Giants Rumors & NewsJets Rumors & News

With the start of NFL Free Agency today, The Journal News gives us a preview of potential targets for the Gang Green, while The Newark Star-Ledger takes a look at Big Blue’s shopping list.

JETS

CB Nate Clements, Bills: The Jets need depth and an upgrade at the position. Clements, the top cornerback on the market, is expected to get between $7 million and $8 million per season, and word is he’s interested in what the Titans have to say.

CB Nick Harper, Colts: His late-season return bolstered the Colts’ Super Bowl run and it’s expected he’ll remain in Indianapolis. But he’s worth a look.

RB Dominic Rhodes, Colts: The Jets most likely have crossed Rhodes off their list after his recent DUI arrest. On the other hand, his price has come down. Kevan Barlow and Derrick Blaylock have been cut. That leaves Cedric Houston and Leon Washington, and neither has shown he’s an every-down back, so the Jets have a need.

LB Adalius Thomas, Ravens: The two-time Pro Bowl selection is versatile, having played every …

O’Hara Sticking With Big Blue

Giants Rumors & News

Via the New York Post:

With the start of free agency less than two hours away, the Giants re-signed center Shaun O’Hara last night. The two sides worked virtually around the clock to come up with a deal that retained continuity on the offensive line and allowed the team to keep one of its strongest leaders….

As reported in Wednesday’s Post, the Giants’ offer of five years and $18 million was not going to get it done, but the ante was increased and O’Hara agreed to a five-year, $19 million package that includes a signing bonus of $7.5 million.

Jimmy Jackson To the Rescue?

Knicks Rumors & News

The Post reports that members of the Knicks front office met with 36-year-old veteran swingman Jimmy Jackson yesterday, and are discussing internally the possibility of signing the free agent veteran to help plug the void created by Jamal Crawford’s injury. With guards Steve Francis and Nate Robinson likely back in the lineup after missing Wednesday’s embarrassing loss to the Celtics, the team could wait to see how they look tonight against Golden State and tomorrow versus Atlanta.

Even if the Knicks’ guards perform well in the back-to-back set, Jackson’s addition could still make sense. Quentin Richardson is clearly hobbled by the latest flare-up of his chronically injured back, and Francis’s status is a ticking time bomb. The Knicks could also benefit from another veteran presence on the floor on a young team trying to make an unlikely playoff push.

Not So Fast

Yankees Rumors & News

By most accounts, Yankees phenom Phil Hughes was unimpressive in his spring training debut, tossing 33 pitches, but just 18 for strikes. Onlookers described him as anxious, nervous, and overthrowing. At the end of his 1 1/3 innings of work, he had allowed one run on one hit, two walks, and a wild pitch. Not horrible, but not great, and the morning papers are describing the performance as a “Phlop.” (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

The lone voice of reason seems to be the Post’s Mike Vaccaro – though one has to wonder if he was watching the same game after describing Hughes’s debut as “Simply Wonder-Phil.” Vaccaro’s point is that with five spots in this year’s rotation already spoken for, and the Yanks not anxious to rush and potentially damage the jewel of their farm system, the last thing in the world that the organization needed was a dominant display by the 20-year-old prospect. According to Vaccaro, Hughe’s so-so performance will temper the …

About Face: Francis To Play?

Knicks Rumors & News

Via Frank Isola on his blog, Knicks Knation:

Does anyone really believe that [Steve] Francis was in such bad shape on Monday that he was talking about possibly being done for the season and now he is expected to play Friday? I don’t doubt that Francis is experiencing some soreness in his right knee. But if he can play tomorrow night against the Warriors, how come he couldn’t suit up on Wednesday when the Knicks needed him?

But with the Knicks fighting for a playoff spot, Francis owed it to his teammates to be in Boston. Maybe the Knicks promised him that if they didn’t trade him by the deadline they would work on a buyout. Maybe Francis is angry that the Knicks backed out, now that Crawford is hurt.

But he is still being paid $15 million to perform a service. It’s not asking too much for him to board a luxurious charter plane, spend one night in a five-star hotel and then play a kid’s game in front of 17,000 people.

Francis has …

Vilma Available?

Jets Rumors & News

This rumor sounds more like speculation than responsible journalism, but if it comes to pass I’ll have to eat my words. In any event, David Elfin of the Washington Times reports that the Washington Redskins could look to acquire Jets linebacker Jonathan Vilma should they be unable to finalize a rumored agreement with Buffalo’s London Fletcher-Baker. Says Elfin:

If the Fletcher-Baker deal isn’t consummated…the Redskins could trade for middle linebacker Jonathan Vilma, the 2004 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year who struggled when the New York Jets switched to a 3-4 scheme in 2006.

Not much substance there really, but it’s caused a minor stir in New York. Over at The Feed, they note:

I think that’s far-fetched unless the Jets have some designs on a new inside linebacker. Vilma didn’t have a great season but he improved as he grew more comfortable in the defense and had some fine games down the stretch. To give up on a player who showed so much in his first two seasons …

Jets Extend Cotchery, Cut Two More

Jets Rumors & News

Via ESPN.com:

Jerricho Cotchery, who had a breakout year with the New York Jets last season, signed a multiyear contract extension with the team Thursday.

Cotchery set career highs with 82 catches, 961 yards receiving and six touchdowns while starting every game for the Jets last season.

In his third year out of North Carolina State, the athletic Cotchery combined with Laveranues Coles to form the most productive receiving tandem in team history. The duo combined for 173 catches and 12 touchdowns.

“Jerricho Cotchery is the type of player we are looking for here,” general manager Mike Tannenbaum said in a statement. “He earned a starting role this year and showed the productivity and consistency we want at that position.”

In other news, the Jets have cut ties with two more veterans, waiving running back Derrick Blaylock and defensive end Bobby Hamilton. Blaylock’s departure comes as no surprise, however as noted over at jetsblog, Hamilton’s release would seem to fly in the face of an earlier report that …

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