MLB, NBA, NHL, Wimbledon, Olympic News + Free Plays for Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Team USA losses two more big men

With Anthony Davis doubtful with a severely sprained ankle and Lamar Odom opting out of his spot, the Team USA could be short some big men at the Olympics. In fact, with Derrick Rose, Dwight Howard, LaMarcus Aldridge, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh all out with injuries, Team USA has taken a real beating the last four months. LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul and Deron Williams, from the the 2008 gold-medal team at Beijing and Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Love and Tyson Chandler from the 2010 World Championship team have guaranteed spots. There are three open spots that will be filled from a pool of six that includes James Harden, Eric Gordon, Davis, Rudy Gay, Andre Iguodala and Blake Griffin. Team USA will start it’s Olympic camp July 7th in Las Vegas.

NBA Free Agency an trade news

The Atlanta Hawks have begun the blowing up of their roster by trading Joe Johnson and Marvin Williams. The Hawks sent Johnson and the rest of his $90 million dollar contract to Brooklyn for Jordan Farmar, Anthony Morrow, Jordan Williams, Johan Petro, a sign-and-trade of DeShawn Stevenson, and the Nets’ 2013 lottery-protected pick via Houston. Not done there, Atlanta sent power forward Marvin Williams (#2 overall pick in 2005) to Utah for guard Devin Harris. The moves relieve the Hawks of $75 million in salary obligations and frees up plenty of cap space. Josh Smith has also been subject to trade talks and will likely be the next out the door.

Brooklyn’s acquisition of Johnson effectively eliminates them from any chance of getting Dwight Howard but locks up a six-time All-Star to use in their negotiations to re-sign Deron Williams. Over the long haul, Brooklyn can offer Williams $30 million more than the Dallas Mavericks, the ex-Utah Jazz guard’s other suitor. Williams, a Dallas native, is expected to make a decision right away.

Brodeur re-ups with the Devils, two-years for $9 million

It’s rare these days for a player to play an entire career with one team but future Hall-of-Fame goalie Marty Brodeur will finish his career as a New Jersey Devil, the only team he’s ever known. Brodeur was the Devils first pick (20th overall) in the 1990 NHL draft and owns a career record of 656-371-105 with 119 career shutouts and a lifetime 2.23 goals against average. Last season, the 40-year-old Brodeur posted a 31-21-4 record with a .908 save percentage plus a big playoff run in leading the Devils to the Stanley Cup final.

Sharapova knocked out, Federer survives

Top-seeded and 2004 Wimbledon champion Maria Sharapova was eliminated in straight sets Monday by big-hitting German Sabine Lisicki. With Dirk Nowitzki in her guest box, the 15th-seeded Lisicki overpowered Sharapova start to finish in the 6-4, 6-3 win. Lisicki had been 0-3 lifetime vs. Sharapova including a loss in last year’s Wimbledon semifinals.

I’ll Have Another headed to Japan for stud duties

Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner I’ll Have Another is headed to Japan where he will begin his stud career during the next breeding season. I’ll Have Another will stand at Shigeyuki Okada’s Big Red Farm on the island of Hokkaido, financial terms were not announced. The three-year-old son of 2005 Travers winner Flower Alley ended his career with five wins in seven starts and earnings of $2,693,600. He was retired before the June 9th Belmont Stakes after sustaining a tendon injury while training.

MLB Diamond Dust

Bookmaker takes a look at tonight’s Rangers/WSox matchup

WSOP Million Dollar Buy In Final Table is set

Antonio Esfandiari is the chip leader heading into tonight’s $1 Million Big One for One Drop Final Table. Fourty-eight players put up $1 million dollars each for a chance at the biggest cash prize in poker history. The winner will take home a whopping $18.3 first prize. Nine players will share in the $43 million in prize money. The first player eliminated inside the money was 2009 Poker Hall of Fame inductee Mike Sexton, WSOP bracelet winner and World Poker Tour commentator taking down $1,109,333 for his ninth place finish. Only eight players remain to battle it out at the ESPN televised final table.

In order of chip count

1. Antonio Esfandiari – 39,925,000
2. Sam Trickett – 37,000,000
3. Guy Laliberté – 21,700,000
4. Brian Rast – 11,350,000
5. Phil Hellmuth – 10,925,000
6. David Einhorn – 8,375,000
7. Richard Yong – 7,475,000
8. Bobby Baldwin – 7,150,000

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