New York Jets linebacker Jonathan Vilma has been granted permission by the team to seek a trade, essentially ending his career in the Meadowlands. Vilma is currently rehabbing from a knee injury that ended his 2008 season in week seven, but teams still appear to be interested in the former NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year.
Though he has been given permission to arrange a trade, Vilma has been told that the Jets will not deal him to the New England Patriots, possibly in retaliation for the spygate scandal that has left a permanent mark on the Patriots 18*-1 season.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are believed to be among the teams interested in Vilma, as they recently hired former Jets defensive coordinator Donnie Henderson as an assistant.
Wide receiver Laveranues Coles also sought permission to find a trade out of New York, but the team denied his request, which is an indication that the club is working on a new contract to keep the receiver over the long-term.
Boston Red Socks outfielder Manny Being Manny Ramirez has changed agents and will now be represented by superstar agent Scott Boras. Manny Being Manny has one year left on his contract with the Red Socks, but the club holds a $20 million option for the 2009 season and another for the 2010 season.
Boras is considered the nastiest agent in baseball in the eyes of club owners, but almost always seems to do the best by his clients. Other than the recent Alex Rodriguez fiasco, Boras has made a fortune while negotiating contracts for the players he represents. Nevertheless, it appears he isn’t that knowledgeable about Manny Being Manny.
“It’s always a privilege to talk to great hitters and this guy’s a Hall of Fame hitter,” Boras said. “He’s a very dedicated worker and he has a chance to play the game for a long time because of his ability and how he conditions himself.”
“The real important discussion to have is his long-term plan and how long he wants to play. He wants to play a long time. He used his ‘I want to be the next Julio Franco’ line on us, too. With his conditioning program, he’s got the body of a 30-year-old. He’s a very committed athlete.
Looking at his career, Manny being Manny has only played in 150+ games six times in his 15-year career and has played less than 135 in each of the past two seasons.
Nevertheless, if the Red Socks decide not to pay Manny being Manny $20 million next season, it wouldn’t be surprising if someone else did thanks to Boras.
Following the trend of obesity rates throughout the country, the Boston Red Socks have signed 400-pound pitcher Bartolo Colon to a minor-league contract. The contract is not guaranteed in any way according to ESPN.com’s Buster Olney, and Colon will only earn a minimal salary plus performance incentives if he makes the major league roster.
Colon won the Cy Young Award in 2005, but has been a shell of the pitcher he was back then…well, at least his abilities are a shell…his body clearly is not.
Following a loss to Villanova on Saturday afternoon that ended their 10 game winning streak, University of Connecticut head basketball coach Jim Calhoun reinstated guard Jerome Dyson, who was previously suspended for failing a drug test that was administered after he was found with alcohol illegally.
Dyson was suspended along with guard Doug Wiggins when campus police found the two of them in a parking lot on January 25th with a bottle of vodka and a bottle of cognac. Both players are under the legal age to have alcohol. Police also found a small amount of marijuana “near the car,” but neither player was charged with drug possession.
As part of the school’s policy regarding minors with alcohol, both were subject to drug tests, which Dyson failed; it was his second failed test at Connecticut, which warranted an immediate 30-day suspension.
Said Calhoun at the time of the suspension, “I’ve seen people put in numerical numbers. As far as I’m concerned, he’s indefinitely suspended.”
According to the university policy, students “will not be allowed to participate in practice or competition for a period of 30 to 60 days. At the end of this period, the student-athlete will be retested. If this test is negative, the individual may be reinstated for both practice and competition.”
Dyson was reinstated 31 days after the night he was caught with alcohol and “near” marijuana and one day after Villanova defeated the Huskies 67-65.
Despite what anyone says in regards to the recent 11-player deal that brought Ben Wallace, Wally Szczerbiak and Deltone West to the Cleveland Cavaliers to play alongside LeBron James, the clear point of this trade was getting rid of Larry Hughes. Sure, they needed to include Drew Gooden in the deal, but trading Hughes was key.
Many people were shocked when Hughes landed such a big contract from the Cavs and it’s been a nightmare ever since. Despite all of the recent trades in the past three weeks, Cleveland getting rid of Hughes has to be the best move by an Eastern Conference team.
The trade is an interesting one for Chicago because the common sentiment is that trading Ben Wallace will allow Tyrus Thomas and Joakim Noah to get more minutes; but where does that leave Drew Gooden? Larry Hughes is now supposedly the replacement for Ben Gordon, since he will almost certainly leave after this season. For a team that was in trade talks for Kevin Garnett, Shawn Marion, Kobe Bryant and Amare Stoudemire, this is a head-scratcher.