NBA Free Agents NFL Blackouts And Baseball

07/04/12 6:48 PM

There have been a lot of moves in the NBA free agent market over the last several days. The biggest news is the re-signing of Brooklyn Nets guard Derron Williams. Williams signed a five year 98 million dollar contract. Along with Williams the Nets have traded for Atlanta’s Joe Johnson and signed Portland’s Gerald Wallace to put together a pretty good trio. Now the big decision for Brooklyn is whether to enter the Dwight Howard sweepstakes. One of the rumors is the Nets would have to give up Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries, and promising guard Marshon Brooks to acquire Howard.

Speaking of Howard, he told the Orlando Magic that he wants to be traded and prefers playing for the Brooklyn Nets. There could be some problems in making that deal. One, the Nets are pretty close to the luxury tax concerning their salary cap, and secondly the Los Angeles Lakers have entered the discussions. The Lakers could offer center Andrew Bynum in a trade package.

It will be interesting to see where Phoenix’s Steve Nash ends up signing. He has two choices whether to go to a team with a chance of winning the NBA title or finish his career in his native Canada with Toronto and make some big money. At the end of last season Jeremy Lin was considered a lock to re-sign with the New York Knicks but that is no longer a sure thing. Several teams have expressed interest in Lin and it has drove up his market value considerably. A couple of the teams interested in Lin have stated that they will use a “poison pill” contract to make it tough for the Knicks to re-sign him.

The NFL last week stated that they will change their blackout policy. No longer will teams have to sell every ticket to avoid a blackout  now its 85 percent of the tickets available per game. This is a good move because it will allow local fans to see more games. Also the NFL is going to enhance the game day experience for fans at the stadium. The league is going to have free wi-fi for fans to use their portable devices to track other games and their fantasy football teams. The NFL’s Red Zone Channel will be shown in every stadium so the fans can watch every touchdown  scored on Sunday live as it happens. The NFL is making these changes because overall ticket sales fell last season and several teams have exhausted their season ticket waiting lists.

The Pittsburgh Pirates are tied with the Cincinnati Reds for first place  in the National League Central and are ready to make the moves to make sure they stay in the race until the end of the season. Because of the Pirates poor record in the last decade they have been able to stock the farm system with some pretty good arms. They are now ready to deal some of the surplus talent to get a veteran bat or two. Pittsburgh as a team is only hitting .242 as a team.

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