Sports Morning Headlines-Wednesday, 12/29/10

News from around the Texas Sports Scene for Wednesday, December 29, 2010.

NBA-best Spurs rout Bryant and reeling Lakers - Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili were on the bench before the final horn, and not because of their bad shooting nights. That's how easy it was for the San Antonio Spurs.  On the other end, Kobe Bryant was also out of the game early. That's how bad it's getting for the Los Angeles Lakers.  Tony Parker scored 23 points and the Spurs, backing up their NBA-best record against the defending champions, beat a still-frustrated Bryant and the reeling Lakers 97-82 on Tuesday night.  "It's always great to beat the champion," Ginobili said.       READ MORE

Spurs Rip Reeling Lakers - Spurs Beat Lakers 97-82; Improve To NBA Best 27-4.  Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili were on the bench before the final horn, and not because of their bad shooting nights. That's how easy it was for the San Antonio Spurs.  On the other end, Kobe Bryant was also out of the game early. That's how bad it's getting for the Los Angeles Lakers.   READ MORE

ProjectSpurs: Nowitzki day-to-day - Aside from tonight's huge matchup between the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Lakers, another big game coming this Thursday will be the Spurs taking on the Dallas Mavericks.  Granted the Spurs must deal with the Lakers tonight, but here is some news regarding Dirk Nowitzki and the recent knee injury he suffered against the Oklahoma City Thunder:  Dirk Nowitzki’s knee injury has been diagnosed as a sprain, and he will miss tonight's game while being listed as "day-to-day'' from there.   READ MORE

Mavericks Offense Sputters Without Nowitzki, Lose to Raptors 84-76 - The Dallas Mavericks had their first full game of the season without Dirk Nowitzki and the offense looked lost.  The spacing wasn't there and the team didn't really play as a team.  "Without the big fella stretching the floor, things are a little different out there," said Tyson Chandler.  The Toronto Raptors, short-handed on their own as they missed several key players, were able to take advantage of the adjusting Mavericks and did enough to take the 84-76 victory over the Mavericks.   READ MORE

Mavericks must not rush Nowitzki's return - No matter how much it hurts and no matter if the win-loss record suffers, the Mavericks have to keep Dirk Nowitzki out as long as it takes for him to be 100 percent.  Call it the Roddy Rule.  Just as the Mavericks have been ultra- conservative in Roddy Beaubois' recovery from foot surgery, they should think long term with Nowitzki's knee.   READ MORE

Caron Butler nursing injured fingers - Dirk Nowitzki isn't the only wounded Dallas starter.  Caron Butler left the American Airlines Center with his right hand heavily wrapped. He said he injured the ring and pinkie fingers on his shooting hand during Monday's win over the Oklahoma City Thunder.    READ MORE

Fans should be bashing Bosh, not lambasting LeBron - There isn't a more popular villain in the NBA than LeBron James, whose series of public relations missteps has been impressive.  He hasn't done anything unforgivably egregious. PR gaffes are more about style than substance, and somehow James managed to draw criticism for a $2.5-million donation to charity. (Yes, the self-righteous critics should check themselves.)  But as the Miami Heat roll into town tonight to face the Rockets, one has to think Chris Bosh is considered to be more of a scoundrel here than James.  James is likely to receive the same generous booing he gets in opposing arenas league-wide, but it won't be the sustained derision he received in Cleveland or New York.   READ MORE

Martin to play tonight despite knee issue - Down but not out.  Rockets guard Kevin Martin sat out Tuesday's practice with a sore right knee but is expected to play tonight. Martin went down hard on a fourth-quarter foul by John Wall in Monday's win over the Wizards.  "I have some bruising," Martin said. "We figured we'd let it rest today. It's going to hurt, but I'll be all right. I always said if it's not broken I can play.   READ MORE

Rockets Contracting? Heat Expanding? More Hot Air? - With a marquee match-up looming I thought I'd offer a few flu-induced disjointed thoughts tangentially related to the matter at hand.  First you need to be familiar with the latest LeBron James Tempest in a Teapot.  Some people have defended LeBron, saying, essentially "Hey, man, he's just speaking his mind.  It's so typical of this cynical media establishment to lambast the poor man for doing it, yet even so, I am shocked and appalled."   READ MORE








Ron Washington: ‘There will be competition’ to round out bottom of Rangers’ pitching rotation - During the annual Norm-A-Thon on Monday, Norm Hitzges chatted with Rangers manager Ron Washington on sports radio 1310 The Ticket. Hitzges used the 18-hour broadcasting marathon to raise money for the Austin Street Centre.  Here are a few highlights:  On if he was disappointed to not win the American League Manager of the Year award:  "No, not really. Individual awards never really turn me on. Yes, if I get them that is fine and I appreciate it. But it's not something that I'm in this game for.   READ MORE

Brett Myers thanks GM Ed Wade with loyalty - Astros ace Brett Myers generated little interest on the free-agent market last offseason after an injury-plagued 2009 campaign with the Philadelphia Phillies that included hip surgery to repair a torn labrum.  Despite early career success in Philadelphia, Myers had worn out his welcome in the City of Brotherly Love, especially after earning close to $25.79 million over a three-year period (2007-09) while posting just a 19-23 record with 21 saves, as manager Charlie Manuel tried to figure out how best to utilize him.   READ MORE





 

Should the Cowboys' 1-7 start be factored into Jerry Jones' evaluation of Jason Garrett? - Each week, Cowboys writers debate a hot topic pertaining to the team. This week's topic: "Should the Cowboys' 1-7 start be factored into Jerry Jones' evaluation of Jason Garrett?"  David Moore: Yes.   Bill Nichols: No.   READ MORE

Cowboys QB Stephen McGee eager for shot in feature role - Stephen McGee was cast in the role of Michael Vick the last time the Cowboys prepared for Philadelphia. The quarterback has been assigned a much more difficult part in this week's rematch.  Himself.    READ MORE

'Humbled' Cowboys players react to being selected to the Pro Bowl - Five Dallas Cowboys were selected as starters for the Jan. 30 Pro Bowl: Tight end Jason Witten, center Andre Gurode , linebacker DeMarcus Ware , nose tackle Jay Ratliff and punter Mat McBriar.  This marks the 31st season in which the Cowboys have had five-or-more Pro Bowl selections.  Witten will be making his seventh consecutive Pro Bowl appearance, the most by a tight end and the sixth most overall in team history.   READ MORE

If Jerry Jones lets Jason Garrett go, it may haunt him - If we are to believe Jerry Jones – and frankly, you should put more stock in Santa – he's about to embark on the Cowboys' seventh coaching search since his shock and awe acquisition in 1989.  As you might expect from a man of his impulses, Jerry's been all over the map.  He's come equipped with a coach (Jimmy Johnson) and crowned one (Barry Switzer). In 1998, he interviewed five guys who, for the most part, no one's wanted since.  He's gone from interviewing Dave Campo and Joe Avezzano in 2000 to Bill Parcells and Dennis Green in 2003.    READ MORE

Kubiak is man for the job, for just one more week - "We all agree — and by "we" I mean pretty much all of us except Bob McNair, the man who will make the call — that Gary Kubiak is a fired coach walking. One wonders what it will take for McNair to realize that even if his team is as close to being good as he thinks it is, even if the Texans are on the right track as he told us a couple of weeks ago, Kubiak is not the person to take the team to the next level. As reluctant as McNair might be to pull the plug on the Kubiak experience, finding a logical reason to retain the fifth-year coach is nearly impossible. Yet, the idea that McNair should fire Kubiak before the final game of the season is silly. What would be the point?    READ MORE

Coaches at fault for substitution issues - "Smith hits nail on head After the 24-23 loss at Denver, defensive end Antonio Smith said there was confusion on defense that caused, among other things, the Texans to get caught with 10 players on the field twice. Coach Gary Kubiak said injuries to defensive tackles Shaun Cody and Earl Mitchell contributed to the confusion. "We suited seven defensive linemen for maybe the only game since I've been here," Kubiak said. "Then we had two get nicked up. We're trying to rotate guys because of the altitude and trying to keep guys fresh, so we got ourselves into a pickle. "It was our fault as coaches.    READ MORE

Kubiak tunes out chatter about job - "Gary Kubiak has been in the NFL long enough to know that when a coach has one winning record and no playoff appearances in five seasons, fans and some members of the media are going to demand he be fired. With one game remaining in a 5-10 season that has been the most disappointing in the Texans' nine-year history, Kubiak could be out of a job next week. Reliant Stadium might not be half-full for the Jacksonville game Sunday. Fans are calling for demonstrations and boycotts to show owner Bob McNair how fed up they are. "It's part of my job, and I understand that," Kubiak said Monday, one day after the Texans lost 24-23 at Denver.    READ MORE

Fans organizing 'Fire Gary Kubiak Rally' - "Brad White approached fellow Texans fan Scott Carter, who's responsible for FireGaryKubiak.com, to organize what they're calling the "Fire Gary Kubiak Rally." They're determined to convince owner Bob McNair to begin looking for a new coach to take the reins of the team they love so much. But first, they'll need McNair to fire Kubiak. They, along with other fans, will protest in front of Reliant Stadium near the Kirby-side entrance on Sunday at 12:15, just hours before the Texans game against the Jaguars begins.    READ MORE







After tepid start, Jay Finley poised to set Baylor rushing record - He needs just 33 yards today against Illinois in the Texas Bowl to break Walter Abercrombie's 30-year-old mark of 1,187 yards.    READ MORE

Breaking down Wednesday's Texas Bowl: Baylor vs. Illinois - Jay Finley has amassed 851 yards rushing and 10 TDs in his last six games, bringing much needed balance. He's been especially effective between the tackles.    READ MORE

Basketball: UNT pulls away in blowout victory - The way North Texas’ game against Panhandle State unfolded Tuesday night was a little like the short version of what turned out to be a historic run through the nonconference season by the Mean Green. There were a few bumps along the way, not to mention a scare or two. In the end, though, one couldn’t argue with the results.   READ MORE

Time running out for SMU star receiver Aldrick Robinson - SMU senior receiver Aldrick Robinson and receivers coach Jeff Reinebold shared a little moment at practice Tuesday while preparing for Thursday's Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl against Army.   READ MORE

Army LB and Texas native Steven Erzinger has some good genes - Going into Army's game against SMU on Thursday in the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl, Black Knights junior linebacker Steven Erzinger from Houston can seek out the wisdom of older brother Scott.   READ MORE

Rose Bowl gives TCU Horned Frogs shot to finish No. 1 on defense - There are many reasons why TCU hopes to play its best game of the season Saturday.  Of course, a victory in the Horned Frogs' first Rose Bowl is No. 1 on the list of goals against Wisconsin. A win would give TCU (12-0) its first 13-win season and first perfect record since 1938.   READ MORE

Badgers QB Scott Tolzien humble heading to Rose Bowl - Scott Tolzien's Wisconsin teammates think they couldn't win the Rose Bowl without their steady senior quarterback taking the snaps.  Not Tolzien. He insists the Badgers would do just fine without him.  Wisconsin's signal-caller is habitually marginalized, even by himself. After all, his offense also features a mammoth offensive line, a star tight end and three tailbacks with more than 850 yards rushing apiece.    READ MORE

Report: Texas' Bobby Kennedy hired as receivers coach at Colorado - The Daily Camera, Boulder's daily newspaper, reported today that Texas wide receivers coach Bobby Kennedy has been hired for the same position at Colorado under new head coach Jon Embree.   READ MORE

Another bowl game, another coaching distraction for Red Raiders - The call came Sunday, shortly before Texas Tech was scheduled to check in at the Dallas team hotel. Bront Bird listened, understood and knew what he had to do next.   READ MORE

Texas Tech aims to fix defensive woes in TicketCity Bowl against Northwestern - Texas Tech's defense views the TicketCity Bowl as its shot for redemption after allowing opponents to average 463 yards and 30.3 points per game during a season that produced more frustration with the sudden departure of coordinator James Willis.   READ MORE

Live chat: Brian Jensen answers your Texas Tech questions at 10 a.m. Wednesday - Brian Jensen, the voice of Texas Tech football, answers your questions about the team and its TicketCity Bowl appearance at 10 a.m. Wednesday. Ask your questions in the Coveritlive module below, and Mr. Jensen will discuss them for an hour or so. Mobile users can enjoy the chat on our SportsDayDFW.com mobile site.   READ MORE







Dallas Stars use a complete team effort to outduel Predators, 4-2 - Dallas goalie Andrew Raycroft earned third-star honors after the Stars' victory over the Nashville Predators.  His teammates thought he should have been the first star.  Raycroft made 44 saves, and the Stars extended the Predators' losing streak to five games with a 4-2 win on Tuesday night.   READ MORE


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