Truth & Rumors: Oct. 4, 2004
Posted: Monday October 4, 2004 11:59AM; Updated: Monday October 4, 2004 2:52PM
Scottie Pippen is expected to announce his retirement Tuesday. The Bulls aren't expected to retain Pippen in any front-office capacity, but they plan to retire his jersey this season.
Gary Payton will join the Celtics today for media day and the start of training camp.
Tracy McGrady wants a contract extension, and the Rockets want to sign him to a longer deal.
Isiah Thomas has turned over virtually the entire roster since arriving 10 months ago, and two of the four players who remain from the dark days of Scott Layden (Shandon Anderson, and probably Kurt Thomas) are gone as soon as Thomas finds a taker.
The Nets' search for a power forward to replace Kenyon Martin led them to Karl Malone, but Malone told the team he wasn't interested. The Nets are expected to add veteran point guard Travis Best to their training camp roster.
The Nuggets could re-sign free-agent swingman Rodney White as soon as today.
If the Pistons had to let one player go, it would come down to Derrick Coleman or Elden Campbell.
It's possible Sammy Sosa has played his final game as a Cub. GM Jim Hendry was upset at his highest-paid player not being in the dugout for the final game. Hendry declined to say whether this would hasten trade talks.
Sosa: ''I was in the clubhouse until the seventh inning, when I left. I'm tired of being blamed by Dusty Baker for all the failures of this club. I resent the inference that I'm not prepared. I live my life every minute every day to prepare for combat.''
Moises Alou wants to come back to Chicago, although he admitted he has spoken to his father, Giants manager Felipe Alou, about signing there for next season.
Cubs shortstop Nomar Garciaparra said he laughs at ongoing reports he rejected a four-year, $48 million deal from Boston. It's anybody's guess what Hendry might offer him as a free agent. "This is definitely a place I will consider," Garciaparra said.
The ovation Carlos Delgado received from SkyDome fans marked the end of an era for a city that may not see another baseball superstar wear its colors for quite some time.
The Rangers must decide between packaging players (perhaps Alfonso Soriano and Adrian Gonzalez) for a major trade, signing prime-time free agents, or trying to improve from within. If they can afford Magglio Ordonez, he gives the lineup depth.
Rafael Palmeiro's future in Baltimore depends on what happens in the free-agent market. They are expected to pursue a big right-handed bat -- probably Ordonez -- but could also make a run at power-hitting third baseman Troy Glaus, who might have to play first base if he came to Baltimore.
A.J. Pierzynski might have played his final game with the Giants, who will pursue a run-producer such as Jose Guillen or Alou.
Will Clark might be close to getting a job with the Diamondbacks -- anything from special assistant to batting coach. Once the D'backs fire manager Al Pedrique, they'll interview a group of candidates that will include Mark Grace.
Even Tino Martinez acknowledges that "common sense" says the Devil Rays won't pick up his option. The Tampa native might be willing to sign for less to stay at home, but he wants to play for a contender.
Phillies GM Ed Wade said the process of finding a new manager isn't likely to move swiftly. While Charlie Manuel has to be considered a leading candidate, he's hardly a slam dunk. Grady Little most likely will rate an interview. If they become available, Ken Macha and Jim Tracy would be interesting names. Before it's all over, dozens of names will be discussed. Mike Hargrove? Jim Fregosi? Davey Johnson? Don Baylor? Whitey Herzog?
Larry Bowa, fired as Phillies skipper Saturday, already has talked with Marlins manager Jack McKeon about joining the staff next season.
The Tigers' shopping list should look like: a couple of strong late-inning arms for the bullpen, a reliable center fielder, a top-drawer starting pitcher and another thumper for the middle of the lineup. Alex Sanchez and Eric Munson have trade value.
A number of top free-agent starters will be available, including Boston's Derek Lowe of Dearborn, who has hinted at possibly wanting to come home and play.
Omar Vizquel has a meeting today with GM Mark Shapiro to find out if he'll be an Indian next year.
While Royals GM Allard Baird held out the prospect of Joe Randa's return, Randa said with near-certainty that Sunday marked his last time in a Royals uniform.
Cubs broadcaster Chip Caray announced on the air Sunday he will join his father, Skip Caray, in the Braves' broadcast booth.
The Packers' three-week run of bad football corresponds to the end of Mike McKenzie's holdout and a bitter workplace fistfight between rookie cornerbacks Joey Thomas and Ahmad Carroll. McKenzie apparently is doing all he can to force a trade by the Oct. 19 deadline.
GM Carl Peterson's and coach Dick Vermeil's inability to work cohesively has damaged the Chiefs' ability to deal with and trade running back Larry Johnson, rumored to be offered to Tampa Bay for wide receiver Keenan McCardell.
McCardell will report during Week 10 or 11 if a deal isn't worked out before then.
Giants kicker Steve Christie missed three field goal attempts Sunday. Coach Tom Coughlin said, "We're going to have to do something about that."
If Ricky Williams he decides to come back next year, he will be in demand despite concerns about drug use and doubts about his passion.
Williams is mulling a comeback in 2005, and linebacker Zach Thomas said last week he hopes Miami can eventually trade Williams for first- and third-round picks. But one second-rounder seems more realistic.
The buzz is that Dolphins owner Wayne Huizenga is leaning toward hiring an executive with football expertise for a president-like position, and that he's likely to give a longer leash to GM Rick Spielman than coach Dave Wannstedt.
Titans WR Tyrone Calico returned to action yesterday for the first time since spraining both knees in the preseason, but re-injured his left knee and will undergo an MRI today.
Former Colts defensive end Chad Bratzke, released in a salary-cap move in the offseason, remains out of work despite rumors that teams are interested in signing him.
The family and advisers of the late football legend Johnny Unitas are embroiled in a legal dispute over the marketing rights to his name.
There are disparate opinions among ownerships, which commissioner Gary Bettman recognized with his speak-with-one-voice gag order. The fissures will widen as time goes on, and owners such as the Avalanche's Stan Kroenke are hoping for a resolution. Other owners would prefer the season isn't played at all. That's significant because as few as eight teams can scuttle a settlement. Among the players, it's obvious those with existing guaranteed long-term contracts will begin to sweat.
If they ever come to an agreement, the league's plan is to allow a full month before the start of the season. Two reasons: 1) Allow time for training camps and, 2) Make absolutely certain the deal agreed upon is the same deal that gets written up and signed. That explains the league's position to cancel games a month at a time on an ongoing, or rolling, basis. As of last night, consider games through Nov. 3 erased from the schedule. Total games lost: 139 and counting.
Avalanche center Steve Moore, who suffered two cracked vertebrae and serious head injuries in the March 8 incident with Vancouver's Todd Bertuzzi, is still bothered by post-concussion symptoms.
Rimouski Oceanic's Sidney Crosby is expected to miss 10-14 days following in a knee-on-knee collision with Frederik Cabana of the Halifax Mooseheads on Friday night in a Quebec Major Junior League game. Crosby is expected to be picked first overall in the NHL entry draft.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers owner Malcolm Glazer is poised to launch a takeover bid for Manchester United. Glazer already owns a 19 percent stake in United. Various fan organizations, which previously mobilized to stop takeover bids by Rupert Murdoch and others, have vowed to similarly fight any attempt by Glazer to increase his holdings.
Despite reports that Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand would be named England's captain for Saturday's World Cup match against Wales, manager Sven-Goran Eriksson said David Beckham would continue in that role. Eriksson also indicated Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney will start but his striker partner is still undecided. Michael Owen suffered a "slight muscle problem" in Real Madrid's loss on Saturday, which may clear the way for Tottenham's Jermain Defoe.
A Turkish Cypriot consortium led by multi-millionaire Halil Falyali and including tycoon Asil Nadir, who fled Britain on fraud charges in 1994, will meet with Mohamed Al Fayed to discuss the proposed deal for Al Fayed's Fulham English Premier League football club.