Michael Jordan Releases Statement Addressing George Floyd Protests

As protests continue nationwide, Michael Jordan is speaking out.
The NBA Hall of Famer and Charlotte Hornets owner on Sunday released a statement addressing the ongoing protests surrounding the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police officers. Jordan says his heart goes out to both the Floyd family and those who’ve died “brutally and senselessly” via “acts of racism and injustice” while voicing his support for those still protesting.
“I am deeply saddened, truly pained and plain angry. I see and feel everyone’s pain, outrage and frustration. I stand with those who are calling out the ingrained racism and violence toward people of color in our country. We have had enough.
“I don’t have the answers, but our collective voices show strengths and the inability to be divided by others. We must listen to each other, show compassion and empathy and never turn our backs on senseless brutality. We need to continue peaceful expressions against injustice and demand accountability. Our unified voice needs to put pressure on our leaders to change our laws, or else we need to use our voice to create systematic change. Every one of us needs to be part of the solution, and we must work together to ensure justice for all.”

Statement From Michael Jordan pic.twitter.com/lnXYMhtvo3
— Estee Portnoy (@esteep) May 31, 2020

Floyd died May 25.
More NBA: Scenes From Celtics Star Jaylen Brown’s 15-Hour Journey To Atlanta Protests

How NFL Making Changes To This Rule Could Ultimately Benefit Patriots

Remember the difficult conversations last year?
Should the New England Patriots bring back offensive tackle Isaiah Wynn from injured reserve? Well, what about first-round pick N’Keal Harry? Then again, fullback James Develin could help the running game, right?
The fact that the Patriots, along with every other NFL team, could return only two players from injured reserve sparked continuous debate. Well, at least until the Patriots put an end to it and brought back Harry and Wynn.
The Patriots, and all other NFL teams, however, no longer have to worry about that decision. The NFL has decided rather than allowing just two players to return, teams will be able to return three from the IR starting in this fall.
Essentially, it will give all teams a bit more flexibility during the season and even prior to selecting each organization’s initial 53-man roster. In order for a player to be eligible to return later in the season, they must start the season on said team’s initial 53-man roster.
Of course, if everything goes perfectly, the Patriots won’t have to place any player on IR in the first place. But that’s highly unlikely, as football is a contact sport with injuries occurring each and every week.
So now the Patriots have to settle for this benefit, and it could prove to be key.
More Patriots: Charlie Weis Explains Biggest Question For New England Offense In 2020

Charlie Weis Explains Biggest Question Regarding Patriots’ Offense In 2020

Charlie Weis seems to have the same question that some New England Patriots’ fans have already wondered.
Weis, who served as Patriots offensive coordinator during the organization’s first three Super Bowl seasons (from 2000-2004) explained that while on Sirius XM NFL Radio’s “Opening Drive” program last week.
“My biggest question is, ‘Who is the guy to take the top off the defense?,’” Weis said, as transcribed by ESPN’s Mike Reiss in his weekly notebook published Sunday.
For those unaware of the football terminology, “taking the top of the defense” relates to a pass catcher who can stretch the field for an offense. Essentially, Weis is questioning the weapons at wide receiver.
The Patriots, of course, will likely look to established veteran Julian Edelman, second-year player N’Keal Harry and Mohamed Sanu, who they traded a second-round pick for in 2019. New England also signed Marquise Lee and Damiere Byrd this offseason, and could look to previously undrafted receiver Jakobi Meyers, who will be in his second year with the franchise.
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick had previously touted the group entering the 2020 season, while Pro Football Focus ranked New England 30th out of 32 NFL teams in regard to the position.
More Patriots: Ex-NFL GM Makes Point About New England RBs Amid Questions About Offense

MLB Rumors: Are Some Owners OK With Canceling League’s 2020 Season?

The COVID-19 crisis had led Major League Baseball to re-evaluate its plans for the 2020 season, though players and executives continue to clash on major issues.
But are some owners willing to scrap the entire season altogether?
According to ESPN’s Buster Olney, sources report a handful of owners might be “perfectly willing” to shut down the 2020 season, largely for the sake of their teams’ finances. The goal would be to “slash payroll costs and reduce losses” as teams struggle financially in wake of the coronavirus outbreak.
Naturally, finances have been an issue for teams across the league as the pandemic impedes their ability to make money. But teams have taken different approaches when coping with the crisis.
Some, like the Minnesota Twins and Kansas City Royals, have agreed to pay minor league players through much or all of the regular season timeframe. Others, like the Oakland Athletics and Pittsburgh Pirates, have slashed benefits (like 401(k)s) and pay.
Of course, pay has been a big factor for major league players as the league looks to resume. MLB executives and players have been at odds in recent weeks as players feel the league is attempting to back out of a deal struck March 26 that would give players prorated pay and offer 50-50 revenue sharing as a plausible solution to the league’s financial woes.
More MLB: PawSox Turning McCoy Stadium Into Restaurant With Outdoor Seating
But, are owners really willing to abandon the season for the sake of money? MLB Network’s Jon Heyman doesn’t think so.
“Highly doubtful many owners are anxious (or even perfectly willing) to blow up season to save money,” Heyman tweeted Sunday. “OK, maybe Oakland (based on what it’s done so far). Could be 1 or 2 others, but those are outliers, and as @DavidPSamson points out, it’d take 8 to blow up a potential deal.”

Highly doubtful many owners are anxious (or even perfectly willing) to blow up season to save money. OK, maybe Oakland (based on what it’s done so far). Could be 1 or 2 others, but those are outliers, and as @DavidPSamson points out, it’d take 8 to blow up a potential deal. https://t.co/7HF52VlRlY
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) May 31, 2020

So far, it doesn’t appear to be nearly enough support behind scrapping the season, if there even is any. Whether players and league executives will strike a deal before it’s too late, however, remains to be seen.
More MLB: Here’s What Manny Ramirez Told David Ortiz Before Famous Walk-Off Blast

NBA Stars Have Great Reactions To Jayson Tatum Contract Extension Report

All signs point toward Jayson Tatum soon becoming a very rich man, and the 22-year-old’s peers clearly are happy for him.
The Boston Celtics reportedly “most likely” will offer Tatum a max contract after this season. The news hardly is surprising, considering Tatum was averaging 23.6 points, 7.1 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game before the NBA season screeched to a halt.
Check out these reactions from NBA stars Donovan Mitchell and CJ McCollum:

Dinner on you @jaytatum0 https://t.co/opuhU2FGP3
— Donovan Mitchell (@spidadmitchell) May 30, 2020

Most likely they better stop playing and come off the bag expeditiously https://t.co/ze6RCtooen
— CJ McCollum (@CJMcCollum) May 30, 2020

There were questions about Tatum’s game entering the 2019-20 campaign. However, the Duke product answered most of those questions, and has set himself up for a major payday.
As for whether Tatum and the Celtics will be able to continue what was an excellent season before the stoppage, recent reports indicate the NBA indeed will return at some point this summer.
More NBA: Scenes From Celtics Star Jaylen Brown’s 15-Hour Journey To Atlanta Protests

R.I. Starting XI: Soccer Slowly Returning, PCFC Kit Arrives, And Bundesliga Shows Out

In this weeks edition of R.I. Starting Xi we take a look at Americans in the Bundesliga, the latest on MLS and NWSL return, top flight European league return dates, and the new kit from Providence City FC that was delivered.

After announcing their 2020 Home Kit on Monday an order was placed for the Providence City FC’s “Good Night Light’s” kit which arrived on Friday afternoon at the Trifecta Sports HQ.

Americans in the Bundesliga:

FC Schalke 04 vs SV Werder Bremen ended up being the battle of USMNT’s Josh Sargent and Weston McKennie. Both started for their respective sides and left prior to the final whistle with McKennie departing in the 55th minute and Sargent in the 70th minute. Bremen won 1-nil picking up a critical three points as they fight to say in the Bundesliga. McKennie wore an armband with the words “Justice for George Floyd” during the match.

“Justice for George Floyd”El mensaje que lleva en el brazo Weston McKennie 🇺🇸@Bundesliga_ES | #S04 | #S04SVW | #Bundesliga | #GeorgeFloyd | #McKennie pic.twitter.com/9womI8tOXC— TUDN USA (@TUDNUSA) May 30, 2020

Alfredo Morales and Fortuna Dusseldorf fell 5-nil to FC Bayern Munchen. Morales was subbed off in the 57th minute. John Brooks started for VfL Wolfsburg against Eintracht Frankfurt and fell 1-2. Brooks played the full 90 minutesGio Reyna came on fro Dortmund in the 80th minute of a 6-1 win over SC Paderborn 07Timothy Chandler started for Eintracht Frankfurt and played a full 90 minutes in a 2-1 victory over VfL Wolfsburg

Overall it is nice to see the Bundesliga getting more attention during the COVID-19 shutdown. Personally I haven’t paid too much attention in the past, only tuning in for the premier match-ups and to watch U.S. internationals. Impressed with the style of play and overall entertainment value, it will be interesting to see how many new fans the Bundesliga will gain due to being the first major soccer league to return.

Latest on MLS/NWSL return:

MLS and the MLSPA are working out the details of a tournament that would take place in Orlando that would start in early July. Still a lot of negotiating to take place with various hurdles in the way. NWSL announced that they will be the first team sports league to return to action with a tournament located in Utah.

European Leagues Announce Returns:

The EPL announced that they would return for the completion of the 2019/20 season on June 17th. EPL will have one match on Friday’s, Monday’s, two on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, and four matches on both Saturday and Sunday. East Coast-based fans will be able to watch matches starting at 7:30 am on Saturday’s and finishing with the final match at 3 pm. La Liga will return on June 11th and will have 32 straight days of matchesLiga Portugal will return on June 3rdSerie A will return on June 20th

For ESPN+ subscribers live soccer is back on the platform with the return of the Danish Superliga. Live at 10 am on Monday will be FC Midtjylland and AC Horsens. Only one match on ESPN+ which was the agreement prior to the COVID-19 shutdown. There are six Americans playing in the Danish Superliga including Emmanuel Sabbi who has six goals in 21 appearances this season for Hobro IK. In terms of Monday’s matchup, the loan American is goalkeeper Michal Lansing who has appeared in 14 matches for AC Horsens who is from Randolph, New Jersey.
The post R.I. Starting XI: Soccer Slowly Returning, PCFC Kit Arrives, And Bundesliga Shows Out appeared first on Trifecta Sports.

Go Behind Scenes Of Patriots’ Virtual Draft With This Fascinating Video

The 2020 NFL Draft was unlike any other in New England Patriots history.
Forced to work and collaborate remotely amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Patriots, like every other team, found a way to adapt and get the job done. The team’s official Twitter account recently shared a video that offers a fascinating, behind the scenes look at New England’s virtual draft. Obviously, Bill Belichick is featured prominently in the video.
Take a look:

A #PatsDraft unlike any other.
Behind the Scenes: The Virtual Draft, presented by @Bose pic.twitter.com/OfOTDFOiiI
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) May 29, 2020

Good stuff.
While the uniqueness of the 2020 draft certainly was compelling, fans, media and teams alike surely hope things will have returned to normal in time for next year’s draft.
More NFL: Tom Brady Has Awesome Reaction To Chase Winovich’s Aggressive Instagram

Tom Brady Has Awesome Reaction To Chase Winovich’s Aggressive Instagram

In responding to Chase Winovich’s latest Instagram, Tom Brady spoke for all of those who follow the New England Patriots linebacker.
Winovich on Saturday shared a photo of himself moments after nailing a bullseye with an axe. For reasons currently unclear, the Michigan product elected to keep his shirt off for the photo.
And Brady, a fellow Wolverine, felt inclined to call out his former Patriots teammate.
Here’s Winovich’s Instagram:

View this post on Instagram

Harder than it looks
A post shared by Chase Winovich (@wino) on May 30, 2020 at 5:02pm PDT

And here’s Brady’s comment:

Well said, Tom. Well said.
More NFL: Ex-Patriot Josh Gordon Has Measured Response To Hater’s Instagram Comment

NASCAR 2020 Live Stream: Watch Sunday’s Bristol Cup Series Race Online

Once again, it’s race.
NASCAR Cup Series drivers are set to compete Sunday afternoon in the Supermarket Heroes 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway. The event will be the fifth cup Race in the past two weeks.
Brad Keselowski will start on the pole alongside Aric Almirola with Joey Logano, Ryan Blaney and Martin Truex Jr. rounding out the top five. You can click here to view the full race lineup.
Will Chase Elliott make it two wins in a row following Thursday’s triumph at Charlotte Motor Speedway? We’ll find out soon enough.
Here’s how and when to watch the Supermarket Heroes 500 online and on TV:
When: Sunday, May 31, at 3:30 p.m. ET
TV: FS1
Live stream: FuboTV — free trial | FOX Sports Go
Sign Up Now To Play ‘Supermarket Heroes 500’ Predictive NASCAR Game At NESN’s New Games Site

Ex-Patriot Josh Gordon Has Measured Response To Hater’s Instagram Comment

Josh Gordon clearly has a thick skin.
The veteran NFL receiver remains suspended by the NFL for violating a drug test last season. But Gordon, who has endured multiple suspensions and hardships throughout his career, apparently is working hard toward yet another return to the field.
However, the 29-year-old still has many haters, as evidenced by an Instagram exchange Saturday afternoon. The back-and-forth took place in the comments section of a post shared by Gordon.
(You can click here to view Gordon’s Instagram post.)
Here’s the caption:
“Persistence is the true nature of the warrior spirit”
And here’s Gordon’s measured response to user Coolbreezy_13:

Let this be an example of how to be civil on social media.
More Football: Ex-NFL GM Makes Important Point About Patriots RBs Amid Questions About Offense