Houston Rockets Reportedly Pursuing Carmelo Anthony

Carmelo Anthony may be rocketingto Texas…

The Houston Rockets are reportedly planning to ramp up their pursuit of the 34-year-old Puerto Rican basketball player once he becomes available after a trade and buyout or waive and stretch with the Oklahoma City Thunder, according to ESPN.

Carmelo Anthony

The move comes after free-agent forward Luc Mbah a Moute agreed to a one-year, $4.3 million deal with the LA Clippers, league sources told ESPN.

The Clippers are paying Mbah a Moute the balance of their midlevel exception, bringing him back to the franchise after a season away with the Rockets. 

The Thunder could waive and stretch Anthony’s $27.9 million salary, saving the franchise $107 million in salary and tax, within the next seven to 10 days if they are unable to find a trade partner, league sources said.

The Rockets will be a premium consideration for Anthony, along with the Miami Heat, league sources said.

Arrieta to Bare All in ESPN the Magazine’s annual The Body Issue

He may play for the Chicago Cubs, but that doesn’t mean Jake Arrieta isn’t afraid to show he’s also a Chicago Bare

ESPN has released the starting lineup for ESPN the Magazines annual The Body Issue, in which the world’s top athletes take off all their clothes and pose for photographs that help celebrate the athletic form.

Jake Arrieta

And the 30-year-old part-Puerto Rican baseball star, the MLB wins leader in 2015, has made the cut, along with UFC fighter Conor McGregor, U.S. women’s national soccer team member Christen Press, Super Bowl MVP Von Miller and Miami Heat’s Dwyane Wade.

Arrieta, who is following up his 2015 Cy Young Award-winning season with an impressive 2016 campaign, is a well-known fitness fanatic. He’s lauded the use of Pilates as part of his remarkable comeback story. He currently has an 11-1 record with a sparkling 1.74 ERA for the Cubs in 14 starts this season.

The Body issue will also feature the first transgender athlete to appear in its pages, American duathlete Chris Mosier. Retired diver Greg Louganis — at age 56 — is the issue’s oldest.

“HIV taught me that I’m a lot stronger than I ever believed I was,” Louganis said. “I didn’t think I would see 30, and here I am at 56.”

ESPN hasn’t released the full listyet, but has said the issue will include ten men and nine women.

Arrieta is the latest Latino athlete to be featured in ESPN the Magazine’s The Body Issue, including Major League Soccer star Omar Gonzalez, Miami Marlins star Giancarlo Stanton and futbolista Carlos Bocanegra.

Barbosa Reaches One-Year Deal with the Golden State Warriors

Leandro Barbosa has landed a golden opportunity…

The 31-year-old Brazilian professional basketball player has reportedly reached a deal to sign with the Golden State Warriors for the upcoming season, according to ESPN.com.

Leandro Barbosa

After Barbosa received initial interest from the Miami Heat, Golden State has secured a commitment from Barbosa on a one-year deal at the veteran minimum, according to NBA front-office sources.

Barbosa played 20 games last season with the Phoenix Suns, with whom he broke into the NBA in 2003-04. He’s also had stints with the Indiana Pacers, Toronto Raptors and Boston Celtics.

Golden State had been searching for guard depth and gladly struck a deal with Barbosa before this weekend’s start of the FIBA World Cup in Spain.

Barbosa joins fellow NBA veterans Nene, Tiago Splitter and Anderson Varejao in leading a Brazilian squad that sees itself as a real contender for the championship along with the two consensus favorites: Team USA and host Spain.

Asked recently about his NBA future, Barbosa told ESPN.com: “Man, I’m just really focused on this World Cup.”

Triple Crown Winner Cabrera Earns ESPY Award for Best MLB Player

He may have lost the ESPY for Best Male Athlete to the Miami Heat’s LeBron James. But Miguel Cabrera didn’t come empty-handed.

The  30-year-old Venezuelan baseball star, a third baseman for the Detroit Tigers, was named for Best MLB Player at the 21st ESPY Awards show on Wednesday night in Los Angeles.

Miguel Cabrera

Cabrera earned the award after becoming the first Triple Crown winner (.330 average, 44 home runs, 139 RBIs) since 1967 and winning the American League MVP title.

Meanwhile, Joel Rosario was named the year’s Best Jockey. The 28-year-old American Thoroughbred horse racing jockey won the award after riding the colt Orb to a win at the Kentucky Derby.

Rosario also won the world’s richest horse race, the $10 million Dubai World Cup at Meydan Racecourse in Dubai in March, aboard the US-based stallion Animal Kingdom.

ESPY Award is short for Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Award.

Fan voting, conducted online, was based on performances spanning the past 12 months.

The awards show, which celebrates the year’s best athletes and moments in sports, was hosted by Mad Men star Jon Hamm.

Ginobili Propels the San Antonio Spurs to Victory in Game Five of the NBA Finals

Manu Ginobili is back… in a big way… to help propel the San Antonio Spurs to victory.

The 35-year-old Argentinian professional basketball player broke out of a recent slump with a whopping 24 points and 10 assists in his first start of the season, leading the Spurs past the Miami Heat 114-104 to take a 3-2 lead in the NBA Finals.

Manu Ginobili

Ginobili had his highest-scoring game of the season as the Spurs became the first team to shoot 60 percent in a finals game in four years.

“He’s such a huge part of what we do and how far we’ve come. You can see it tonight in how we played and the results of the game,” said teammate Tim Duncan, who added 17 points and 12 rebounds to the team’s tally. “We’re always confident in him. … We know he has it in him. We hope he can bring it forward for one more win.”

The stage was set from the get-go when Ginobili ran out with Duncan, Tony Parker and the rest of the Spurs’ starters.

One more victory and the Spurs’ Big Three, not Miami’s, will be the team that takes home the championship trophy.

Manu Ginobili

And a big reason was the exceptional play by Ginobili, following what had been a miserable series for the former Sixth Man of the Year.

“I was angry, disappointed,” Ginobili said.

“We are playing in the NBA Finals, we were 2-2, and I felt I still wasn’t really helping the team that much,” Ginobili said. “And that was the frustrating part.”

Ginobili had been averaging just 7.5 points on 34.5 percent shooting in the series, making only three of his 16 3-point attempts. But Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich made the Finals’ second lineup change in two games, after the Heat inserted Mike Miller to start Game 4.

Ginobili didn’t make a start this season and certainly hadn’t been playing like someone who belonged with the first five. But in the Spurs’ biggest game of the season, they remained confident he would break out, and they were right.

“I knew that I was not scoring much and I felt it in the air. But I tried not to care about it. I know I’m critical enough of myself to be worrying about what other people say,” Ginobili said.

It was the first time he scored 24 or more points since having 34 on June 4, 2012, against Oklahoma City, according to STATS.

Ginobili and his Spurs teammates now need only one win to clinch San Antonio’s fifth NBA championship.

Anthony: The Lone Latino 2013 NBA All-Star

Carmelo Anthony will be getting some extra play time this season, thanks to his dedicated fans…

The New York Knicks forward has been named as an Eastern Conference starter for the 2013 NBA All-Star game, which will take place next month in Houston. The players are voted-in by fans around the world, often leading to some interesting results.

Carmelo Anthony

It will be the sixth All-Star game for the 28-year-old half-Puerto Rican basketball star, the only Latino selected as an All-Star this year. Anthony earned 1,460,950, behind only the Miami Heat‘s LeBron James in the Eastern Conference. The Los Angeles Lakers Kobe Bryant was the overall top vote-getter.

This season Anthony has been a scoring machine. He currently has 28 straight 20-point games.

The 62nd NBA All-Star Game will take place at the Toyota Center in Houston on Sunday, Feb. 17, 2013 at 8:00 pm ET, televised exclusively on TNT and broadcast exclusively on ESPN Radio in the U.S.

The All-Star Game will reach fans in more than 200 countries and territories in more than 40 languages.

Here’s a look at the 2013 NBA All-Star Game Roster:

Eastern    Conference

Starter

Appearance

LeBron James, F, MIA 9th
Carmelo Anthony, F, NYK 6th
Dwyane Wade, G, MIA 9th
Rajon Rondo, G, BOS 4th
Kevin Garnett, F, BOS 15th

Reserve

Appearance

Kyrie Irving, G, CLE 1st
Jrue Holiday, G, PHI 1st
Tyson Chandler, C, NYK 1st
Joakim Noah, C, CHI 1st
Luol Deng, F, CHI 2nd
Paul George, F, IND 1st
Chris Bosh, F, MIA 8th

 

Western    Conference

Starter

Appearance

Kobe Bryant, G, LAL 15th
Kevin Durant, F, OKC 4th
Chris Paul, G, LAC 6th
Dwight Howard, C, LAL 7th
Blake Griffin, F, LAC 3rd

Reserve

Appearance

R. Westbrook, G, OKC 3rd
James Harden, G, HOU 1st
Tim Duncan, C, SAS 14th
Tony Parker, G, SAS 5th
L. Aldridge, F, POR 2nd
David Lee, F, GS 2nd
Zach Randolph, F, MEM 2nd

Anthony to Appear in NBA-Themed Special on Disney XD

It’s game on for Carmelo Anthony and his upcoming Disney project…

The 28-year-old half-Puerto Rican professional basketball player who currently plays for the New York Knicks will be appearing in a Disney XD special entitled My Life as an NBA Rookie.

Carmelo Anthony

The special, created in partnership with the NBA, will give viewers an inside look at some of the biggest basketball stars in their first year in the league.

Hosted by Billy Unger of Disney XD’s Lab Rats, the special will feature exclusive footage of New Orleans Hornets power forward and No. 1 draft pick Anthony Davis practicing for the 2012 Summer Olympics with the USA Basketball Men’s National Team.

It also will take fans behind the scenes at the NBA Draft Combine and NBA Draft, show how players mentally and physically prepare for training camp and opening night, reveal entertaining rookie duties and show how they sometimes get pranked by returning players — like having their entire car filled with popcorn or being forced to carry around a pink girly knapsack.

Along with Anthony and Davis, Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard of the Los Angeles Lakers, LeBron James of the Miami Heat, Blake Griffin and Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers, Kyrie Irving of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Kevin Love of the Minnesota Timberwolves, Tyson Chandler of the New York Knicks, Deron Williams of the Brooklyn Nets, Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder will appear in the special.

The program will premiere at on October 29 at 7:00 pm as part of Disney XD’s sports-themed Nothing But Net Marathon, which also will include episodes of Kickin’ It, Lab Rats and Crash & Bernstein starting at 5:00 p.m.

Sanchez Performs National Anthem at Game One of the NBA Finals

She may not have taken home the American Idol crown… But Jessica Sanchez is still singing to the rafters and impressing audiences with her dynamic voice.

Less than three weeks after delivering two memorable Memorial Day performances on national television, the 16-year-old half-Mexican singer wowed the crowd before game one of the NBA Finals.

Jessica Sanchez at the NBA Finals

Before the start of the game between the Miami Heat and Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday night, Sanchez performed an inspired rendition of the National Anthem that results in massive cheers from the crowd.

Before singing “The Star-Spangled Banner,” the pint-sized singer from San Diego was asked by one of her followers on Twitter who she was cheering for. Her response? “im all about thunder tonight! ;)”

And the Thunder rolled in Game One… Teaming up with Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant took over the game and outscored LeBron James‘ team in the second half to beat the Heat 105-94.

The crowd even chanted “MVP” as Durant sealed the victory with two foul shots in the final 12 seconds of the game.