<![CDATA[NBC New York - Sports]]>Copyright 2017http://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/sports http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/4NY_Horizontal.jpg NBC New York http://www.nbcnewyork.comen-usThu, 30 Mar 2017 03:19:59 -0400Thu, 30 Mar 2017 03:19:59 -0400NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Mets' All-Star Closer Familia Suspended 15 Games]]> Wed, 29 Mar 2017 13:31:11 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/AP_16280132152574.jpg

Mets' star relief pitcher Jeurys Familia has been suspended 15 games for violating Major League Baseball's domestic violence policy, the league announced Wednesday.

The unpaid suspension, which will begin on opening day of the team's 2017 regular season, comes despite a judge dropping the charge against Familia in December after his wife told a prosecutor that her husband did not hurt her.

MLB Commissioner Robert Manfred acknowledged as much in a statement, saying, according to FOXSports.com senior baseball writer Ken Rosenthal, "The evidence reviewed by my office does not support a determination that Mr. Familia physically assaulted his wife, or threatened her or others with physical force or harm, on October 31, 2016. Nevertheless, I have concluded that Mr. Familia's overall conduct that night was inappropriate, violated the Policy, and warrants discipline."

"It is clear that Mr. Familia regrets what transpired that night and takes full responsibility for his actions," the statement said. 

Manfred added that Familia has already undergone 12 90-minute counseling sessions with a domestic violence counselor and "received a favorable evaluation." Familia has also agreed to talk to other players about what he learned through the process and to donate time and money to local anti-domestic violence organizations, Manfred said.

For his part, Familia reiterated he never physically harmed his wife.

"I did, however, act in an unacceptable manner and am terribly disappointed in myself. I am alone to blame for the problems of that evening," the 27-year-old All-Star said in the statement obtained by Rosenthal.

Familia said he has learned from his experience and grown as a husband, father and man. He also apologized to the Mets' organization, his teammates and his fans, and said he looked forward to rejoining the squad. 

Familia had been charged with simple assault and had pleaded not guilty after his wife, Bianca Rivas, made several frantic 911 calls to Fort Lee police on the morning of Oct. 31, in which she described her husband as "drunk." 

The Dominican Republic native set a franchise record with 51 saves last season. He previously was involved in an ad campaign for an anti-domestic violence group, which has since ended its relationship with him.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[2018 Olympics: Viewers Can Watch All NBC Coverage Live]]> Wed, 29 Mar 2017 06:41:27 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/180*120/PyeongChang_Sign_PC.jpg

Viewers across the country will be able to watch all 2018 Winter Games coverage live at the same time, NBC announced Tuesday.

The 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games are scheduled for Feb. 8-25, 2018, with the Opening Ceremony on Feb. 8. Between that and the Closing Ceremony Feb. 25, viewers from coast to coast will be able to watch all coverage, including prime-time, live for the first time. 

"Nothing brings America together for two weeks like the Olympics, and that communal experience will now be shared across the country at the same time both on television and streaming online," said Jim Bell, President of NBC Olympics Production & Programming in a statement. "That means social media won't be ahead of the action in any time zone, and as a result, none of our viewers will have to wait for anything. This is exciting news for the audience, the advertisers, and our affiliates alike."

The primetime Olympics broadcast will begin at 8 p.m. ET, 7 p.m. CT, 6 p.m. MT and 5 p.m. PT on most nights. That will be followed by local news, then Primetime Plus programming featuring more live coverage. 

Mike Tirico will host the primetime program, which had been hosted by Bob Costas since 1992.

The events will be broadcast across all NBC Universal networks and streamed live on NBCOlympics.com and the NBC Sports app on mobile devices.

Click here for more details on how to watch.



Photo Credit: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Move to Las Vegas Approved by NFL Owners]]> Mon, 27 Mar 2017 16:27:42 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/DIT_BAY_RAIDERS_032717-149064045515300001.jpg

The Oakland Raiders are moving to Las Vegas.  NFL owners voted to approve the move on Monday. The team plans to continue to play in Oakland in 2017 and 2018 while a $1.9 billion stadium is built in Las Vegas.

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<![CDATA[NFL Approves Raiders' Relocation to Las Vegas]]> Tue, 28 Mar 2017 09:36:34 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/las-vegas-raiders.jpg

NFL owners on Monday gave the Oakland Raiders the green light to move from their current home in the East Bay to Las Vegas.

The relocation move was approved by 31 of the league's 32 owners during meetings in Phoenix.

"My father used to say that the greatness of the Raiders is in its future, and the opportunity to build a world-class stadium in the entertainment capital of the world is one opportunity that will give us the ability to achieve that greatness," Mark Davis, the owner of the Raiders, said.

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Davis added that he has "mixed feelings" about the relocation, and he understands the anger that some fans of the Raiders most likely feel.

"I just hope that in the future as we play in Oakland this year that (the fans) understand it wasn't the players, it wasn't the coaches that made this decision, but it was me that made it," Davis said. "If they have anyone to talk to about it, it should be me. I will, in the coming days, try to explain to them what went in to making this difficult decision."

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf called Monday's announcement "very disappointing news."

"I'm very sad today for the 'Raider Nation,'" she said. "These are the most dedicated, passionate, good-hearted fans that any city could be proud to call theirs. That is what makes my heart so heavy."

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With no stadium in place to greet them, it is not exactly clear at this point when the Raiders will pack their bags for Las Vegas. The Raiders maintain one-year stadium lease options in Oakland for the next two seasons. Davis added that the team could even still play in the East Bay during the 2019 campaign as well if the Las Vegas stadium is still in the works.

"We're still the Oakland Raiders and we are the Raiders and we represent the 'Raider Nation,'" Davis said.

Oakland season-ticket holders disappointed about the owners' decision will be allowed to refund their tickets if they so choose, Davis added.

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The Raiders' proposal to the NFL included a $1.9 billion stadium plan in "Sin City." A total of $750 million in public funds via a Las Vegas hotel tax along with $500 million from the team and the NFL will be used to fund the construction of the domed arena. Bank of America, the Raiders' new chief financial backer, will also contribute funds.

The fact that no physical stadium location in Las Vegas had been officially determined and no stadium lease had been put into writing could have derailed the relocation proposal, but owners did not appear to find issue with those potential roadblocks.

In the days leading up to Monday's vote, Oakland went "all in" in hopes of enticing the franchise to stick with its original home.

Mayor Schaaf over the weekend backed a plan to construct a new $1.3 billion home for the Raiders on 55 acres of immediately available land just south of the Coliseum.

The East Bay city was slated to chip in $200 million to build the public infrastructure and pay for the preparation of the stadium site, according to Schaaf. Oakland's general fund would not have been tapped into to pay for the build. Rather, construction would have been paid off using revenue generated at the venue. Schaaf reiterated that $600 million in private funds would have come from the Fortress Investment Group and NFL Hall of Hamer and 49ers legend Ronnie Lott.

Mayor Schaaf on Monday once again stated that Oakland's stadium plan was a "fully financed, shovel-ready project."

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The last-minute proposal was submitted to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell last week, but it appears the effort was not enough to turn heads.

Over the weekend, Goodell wrote a letter, which was obtained by Bay Area News Group, to Schaaf indicating that the plan "does not present a proposal that is clear and specific, actionable in a reasonable timeframe, and free of major contingencies."

He backed that sentiment up Monday afternoon by claiming that the NFL worked "tirelessly" to resolve stadium issues in Oakland for roughly 10 years, but a substantial and well-rounded solution never materialized.

"The points that we always put back to Oakland were we need certainty on a viable plan that will work for the community and the team long term," he said. "It had to be actionable. We understand that contingencies sometimes occur, but major contingencies that put the entire project into doubt are just unreasonable in a case like this."

Davis added that Oakland did not do nearly enough to express its long-term commitment to the Raiders, especially after the Raiders were prevented from returning to Los Angeles last year.

"Oakland had the opportunity to come in and make a presentation to the league and they came in with a five-page piece of paper that had nothing to do with anything," he said. "They claimed that they would wait for us to lose the vote and come back and then they'd have all the leverage."

The Raiders came up short in that vote. The organization's leaders returned to Oakland and managed to negotiate a one-year lease at the Coliseum with two years of options, according to Davis. Both sides then planned to discuss long-term stadium ideas in the near future, but that never happened.

"A week later I got a call from one of the county board of supervisors telling me, 'Mark, I'm sorry, but the lease that we just negotiated, the three years of leases, are not going to be valid. We're going to raise the rent three times on you,'" Davis said. "At that point, we ended up signing that lease anyway, but then we decided we have to start looking elsewhere to see if we could find a long-term solution."

At that point, the Raiders and the city of Oakland halted communication with the exception of one meeting, according to Schaaf. She did admit that she understands Davis' frustrations with being unable to negotiate a long-term deal with Oakland for the past decade, but she also made sure to criticize him for not taking Oakland's latest stadium plan into consideration.

"I do think that the manly thing for him to do is at least admit that (Oakland) had a viable plan and that he made a choice," she said.

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Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area
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<![CDATA[Is Bill Murray a Good Luck Charm? Xavier Fans Hope So]]> Mon, 27 Mar 2017 11:07:52 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-657091926.png

Bill Murray is having quite the year. It's always a good time to be the iconic 66-year-old 'Ghostbusters' actor, but it turns out that this is a pretty good time to be a fan of his favorite sports teams, too.

The Chicago-area native was front and center for his beloved Cubs’ first World Series victory in 108 years – singing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game;" appearing on 'Saturday Night Live' with team members; calling for Mayor Emanuel to cancel school; and even making one fan’s dream come true. [[394285321, C]]

He crashed postgame interviews, victory celebrations and even a White House press briefing, all for the love of his Cubbies. Now Murray has his sights set on March Madness, and his support of bracket-busting Xavier University has led some to speculate that perhaps there’s a little something more to his diehard fandom.

The Musketeers came into the NCAA tournament as the 11 seed in the West Region, but those long odds didn’t stop them from winning three major upsets in a row. After taking out six-seed Maryland and three-seed Florida State in the first two rounds, Xavier toppled two-seed Arizona on Friday to head to the Elite Eight for the first time since 2008.

In the stands to see it happen was, of course, Bill Murray, whose son is an assistant coach of the Xavier men's basketball team. While the proud father's reaction to Xavier's shocking exit from the 2016 NCAA tournament quickly went viral, this year has so far been a very different story. [[417088723, C]]

A notoriously raucous sports fan, Murray's hair-tousling joy could put a smile on just about anyone's face – and it did not go unnoticed. [[417089043, C]]

"Entourage" actor Jerry Ferrara even tweeted that "tons of credit" goes to Murray, while sidelined Bulls star Dwyane Wade himself was in awe of Murray’s "power." [[417088703, C]]

That power even led some fans to change their allegiance—or hope that Murray could lend them a helping hand. [[417088793, C]]

Whether there’s some sort of magic to Murray's support remains to be seen, as Xavier is set to face their toughest test yet. The Musketeers take on one-seed Gonzaga Saturday evening, with both teams looking to secure a trip to their first-ever Final Four.



Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[NFL to Develop 'Educational Training Video' for Touchdown Celebrations]]> Thu, 23 Mar 2017 17:11:21 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-619305294_master.jpg

The National Football League wants to show players how they should celebrate touchdowns during a game.

The league is preparing a training video to show players which types of celebrations are allowed.

Troy Vincent, the NFL executive vice president of football operations, said on Twitter Wednesday that the league is developing an educational training video, with the goal of giving the players “clear examples of appropriate and inappropriate celebrations.”

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Vincent, a former player, clarifies that the videos are not new celebrations rules but they are for "clarity and consistency for both the official and the player."

But not everyone is happy about the idea.

Former Cowboys player Martellus Bennett ripped NFL in a Twitter rant on Thursday.

He said the NFL wants the players to be robots and not individuals and compared the way NFL promotes logos to the way NBA promotes players.

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Along with the training videos, the committee is also exploring ways to take dangerous hits out of the games.

"We'll communicate this to our coaches and players with video examples of flagrant hits that may result in ejection or suspension," Vincent announced in a series of tweets.



Photo Credit: Justin Edmonds/Getty Images
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<![CDATA[White House Announces New England Patriots' Visit]]> Thu, 23 Mar 2017 15:11:18 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/what-ap.jpg

It's official: the White House has announced when the New England Patriots are visiting after the team's historic comeback Super Bowl win.

The Patriots will meet President Donald Trump on April 19, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer announced Thursday.

A number of star players have already stated they won't be visiting 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., including Martellus Bennett, Devin McCourty, LaGarrette Blount and Dont'a Hightower.

Before the team's Super Bowl win against the Atlanta Falcons, Bennett announced that he wouldn't go to the White House if the Patriots won.

"America was built on inclusiveness not exclusiveness," he tweeted.

Blount's announcement was made on "The Rich Eisen Show" after the Pats' win.

"I don't feel welcome in that house. I'll leave it at that," Blount said.

Running back James White said he was considering skipping the event, but would make a decision after the team was invited.

Star quarterback Tom Brady previously said his teammates are allowed to skip their trip to the White House, but added that they're missing "a great experience."

Brady missed his team's 2015 White House trip during the Obama administration, but said his absence "never was a political thing."

Trump has frequently mentioned his friendships with Brady, Patriots coach Bill Belichick and Patriots owner Robert Kraft, including on the eve of Election Night during a visit to New Hampshire.



Photo Credit: CSN Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[USA Dominates Puerto Rico to Win First WBC Title]]> Thu, 23 Mar 2017 06:38:16 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/160*127/AP_17082181722984.jpg

America's pastime is back in the hands of the United States.

Ian Kinsler hit a two-run homer and Marcus Stroman threw six shutout innings as the United States dominated Puerto Rico, 8-0, to win their first ever World Baseball Classic Title.

It was a patriotic night at Dodger Stadium as the Americans outplayed the undefeated Puerto Ricans in every facet of the game, avenging a 6-5 loss in the quarterfinals last Friday in San Diego.

"We were prepared since we've already played them once," said Pittsburgh Pirates' outfielder Andrew McCutchen. "They got us the last time, we made mistakes in that game, but today, no mistakes were made. That's something we keyed on and we were able to do it. We made history today."

Kinsler got the scoring started for the United States when the Detroit Tigers second baseman teed off on a four-seam fastball from Seth Lugo in the third inning to give the Stars and Stripes and early 2-0 lead.

Earlier in the day, Kinsler sounded off on how Puerto Rico and other Latin American countries play the game, telling The New York Times, "I hope kids watching the World Baseball Classic can watch the way we play the game and appreciate the way we play the game as opposed to the way Puerto Rico or the Dominican plays. That's not taking anything away from them. That just wasn't the way we were raised."

The United States didn't give Puerto Rico a chance to celebrate on Wednesday night as Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Marcus Stroman had a no-hitter through six innings.

"I love pitching in these moments," said Stroman. "I love the atmosphere. I feel like the bigger the game, the more I'm able to get up, the more effective I am. I truly try to pride myself on being a big-game pitcher. This was probably one of the biggest if not the biggest game I've ever pitched in."

Stroman is of Puerto Rican descent, but ironically, opted to play for the United States over Puerto Rico in the WBC tournament. His mother, who is Puerto Rican, was harassed on social media earlier in the week for her son's decision to pitch for Team USA. 

"It definitely added a little fuel to the fire," said Stroman, who was named MVP of the tournament. "This is our first win. We've had a few early exits in the past. So each and every guy came into this with one goal, and that was to win it. I love these guys. It was an unbelievable experience, and I'll be back in four years to defend the title." 

Angel Pagan broke up the no-hitter with a double down the left field line to leadoff the top of the seventh. It was one of only three hits Puerto Rico would have on the night.

Andrew McCutcheon was 2-for-4 with two RBI and Brandon Crawford had a pair of RBI of his own as the U.S. hoisted the WBC trophy for the first time in it's fourth installment.

"It was a fun and great experience," said Crawford after the game. "Just to be on this team and around all these guys. They're All-Stars, Gold Glovers, Silver Sluggers, all that on this team. It was a lot of fun for me just to be a part of it, but the winning makes it even better."

The Americans relished their victory underneath a downpour of confetti on the field. Kansas City Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer carried a bald eagle statue on the stage for the trophy celebration and acknowledged the team had their sights set on winning it all before the tournament began.

"We wanted to get the U.S. back on top of the baseball world," he said. "We did that."

Lugo, a New York Mets minor league pitcher, took the loss for Puerto Rico, allowing four runs on five hits with four walks and seven strikeouts in four innings. Entering the game, Lugo was 2-0 in the tournament, but Puerto Rico lost for the first time in eight games.

Before the game, Puerto Rico had printed up t-shirts that read "WBC Champions," and reportedly had plans for a return flight to San Juan and a parade pre-scheduled.

That preemptive arrogance irked Baltimore Orioles outfielder Adam Jones.

"Do you want the truth? Before the game, we got a note that there were championship shirts made, a flight, and a parade, and it wasn't for us," said Jones. "That didn't sit well with us."

Most of the 51,565 fans in attendance chanted "USA! USA! USA!" as they draped themselves in American Flags. After the game, United States' manager Jim Leyland said this would be the last time he would put on a baseball uniform and dedicated the game to our country's military

"This is for the men and women who serve our country."



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Globetrotter Guests on Class' Famed Handshake Line]]> Wed, 22 Mar 2017 15:18:30 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/DIT+Harlem+Globetrotter+Handshake+THUMB.jpg

North Carolina grade school teacher Barry White Jr. greets each member of his 5th grade class with a personalized handshake every morning. Video of White delivering these handshakes went viral earlier this year. Today, the teacher had another surprise for his students when Harlem Globetrotter Zeus McClurkin showed up to deliver the handshakes. McClurkin has played with the Harlem Globetrotters for six seasons, and in addition to delivering the famous handshakes, he also offered the students some sage advice: listen to your teachers.

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<![CDATA[Blond Ambition: Puerto Rico Baseball Team, Fans Dye Hair]]> Wed, 22 Mar 2017 13:22:43 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/173*120/GettyImages-655812566.jpg The Puerto Rican national baseball team is showing their unity at the World Baseball Classic through blond bonding. Players are sporting bleach-blond locks, inspiring fans to dye their own hair. What began as a joke among team members has turned in to a phenomenon that is causing a shortage of hair dye at beauty supply stores and pharmacies across the island.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Former Chicago Bulls GM Jerry Krause Dead at 77: Report]]> Wed, 22 Mar 2017 06:52:34 -0400 http://media.nbcnewyork.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-369988.jpg

Jerry Krause, known as the architect of the Chicago Bulls' dynasty in the 1990s, has passed away at the age of 77, the Chicago Bulls confirmed Tuesday. 

Krause, who won six championships during his successful tenure with the Bulls, was a member of the Bulls' front office for 18 seasons.

“The entire Bulls organization is deeply saddened by the passing of Jerry Krause,” Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf said in a statement. “Jerry was one of the hardest working guys I have ever been around, and he was one of the best talent evaluators ever. Jerry played an integral role in our run of six championships in eight years. He truly was the architect of all our great teams in the ’90s. I would not have been elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame if it were not for Jerry. We will miss him tremendously, and we send our thoughts and prayers to his wife Thelma and the Krause family.”

A Chicago-native, Krause was hired by Reinsdorf to oversee the construction of the team's roster before the 1985-86 season. In his tenure, he drafted players like Horace Grant, traded for players like Scottie Pippen, Bill Cartwright and Dennis Rodman, and ultimately helped the team to one of the most successful runs in sports history as they won six championships in eight seasons.

“I owe a lot to Jerry. If it weren’t for him bringing me to Chicago in 1985, I probably never would have been a Bull,” Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations John Paxson said in a statement. “He had a great eye for talent, and his ability to build a team is unrivaled. He’s one of the best the league has ever seen."

Even with all that success, there were always tensions between Krause and the two biggest stars in Chicago, as Michael Jordan and Phil Jackson frequently butted heads with the G.M. Krause did not attend Jordan's Hall of Fame induction in 2009, and he frequently chastised Jackson in the press during their rocky relationship.

Jordan released a statement to CNBC Tuesday saying, "Jerry was a key figure in the Chicago Bulls’ dynasty of the 1990s and meant so much to the Bulls, the White Sox and the entire city of Chicago. My heartfelt condolences go out to his wife, Thelma, his family and friends.”

Jackson echoed Jordan's statement, saying Krause's death is "sad day for the Chicago Bulls and the entire NBA community."

"He was a man determined to create a winning team in Chicago - his hometown," Jackson said. "Jerry was known as 'The Sleuth' for his secrecy, but it was no secret that he built the dynasty in Chicago. We, who were part of his vision in that run, remember him today."

*In the original version of this story, it was incorrectly stated that Scottie Pippen was drafted by the Bulls, when in fact he was acquired in a draft-day trade in 1987*



Photo Credit: Getty Images
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