Eagles’ Sirianni uses Tiger Woods to motivate team

There’s only one undefeated team in the NFC, and that is the Philadelphia Eagles(3-0). At this point, the Eagles look like one of the best teams in football, but it’s still early. On Sunday, the Eagles host their former coach Doug Pederson and the Jacksonville Jaguars(2-1).

Philadelphia is getting a lot of national headlines because of its great start. However, Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni wants to keep this team grounded and hungry. To do that, Sirianni showed his team clips of Tiger Woods.

“That’s something when you’re concerned about getting better every single day, and your sole focus is ‘How do I get better, how do I get better, how do I get better,’ it is easy to block out noise,” Sirianni said on Wednesday. “Whether that’s people telling you how good you are or how bad you are.

“A clip that we showed today was of Tiger Woods – and this is what we showed in our team meeting today. When he was at the top of his game, playing as good of golf as anybody has ever played, ever, he was still obsessed with getting better. He says that, ‘I’m obsessed with getting better. I’m obsessed with being the best.’

“That’s a guy that was playing the best golf of anybody ever. What a great example for us, right? We can learn so many good things from what not to do and what to do. Last week it was a Kobe Bryant film. This week it was a Tiger Woods film of just how am I going to improve my swing today to make sure that I’m getting better even though I’m playing pretty good right now.

“I want them to know that I’m doing that. There are things that happened in that game that I was not comfortable with. There are things I’m obsessed with getting better as the head coach to make sure that we’re prepared to play and the different things.

“So first we have to live that as coaches. We have to preach that through our word-of-mouth. Then other great people like Tiger Woods’ word-of-mouth, and then we have to accomplish that.”

The Eagles have not accomplished anything yet. Jalen Hurts is off to a great start, and the defense is getting done. However, again, they have to keep grinding.

Mayweather to battle Deji in exhibition bout

On Sunday, November 13, legendary undefeated boxing Hall of Famer Floyd “Money” Mayweather returns to the ring in his second appearance for the Global Titans Fight Series to face UK-based YouTube sensation turned pro-boxer Deji Olantunji, as world-class boxing and entertainment company Global Titans, along with co-owners/partners FrontRow Entertainment and Mayweather Promotions, proudly present ‘Global Titans Fight Night’ from the Coca-Cola Arena in Dubai and live on pay-per-view.

Mayweather’s (50-0, 27 KOs) previous Global Titans appearance was on May 21 of this year, where he dominated “Dangerous” Don Moore in the Abu Dhabi Unity boxing event at the Etihad Arena on Yas Island. Originally scheduled for May 14 on the iconic Burj Al Arab Hotel’s helipad, the event was postponed a week and moved, due to the death of UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. Although retired, Mayweather has kept a busy schedule as he continues to keep The Money Team brand at the forefront of the biggest events and ventures worldwide.

“I’m delighted to be working with Global Titans and FrontRow Entertainment to bring another incredible boxing experience to Dubai.” said Mayweather. “It’s an honor to return to Dubai and to be a part of such an iconic event in this world-class destination. I would like to thank the Global Titans and FrontRow Entertainment team for giving me this platform and for giving back so much to the sport I love.”

The brother of fellow social-media influencer and professional boxer KSI, Oladeji Daniel “Deji” Olatunji (1-0, 1 KO) is a major YouTube personality at home in the UK. Formerly known online as ComedyShortsGamer (abbreviated as CSG), the 25-year-old is best known for his comedic content, reactions and skits, which have garnered him 10.7 million subscribers and nearly 4.1 billion views on the platform. Deji has already notched one professional boxing victory by stopping fellow YouTuber Yousef ‘Fousey’ Erakat in the second round of their fight on Saturday, August 27 at the 02 Arena in London. In his three-fight amateur career, Deji was defeated by celebrity boxing phenom Jake Paul.

“Huge thanks to Global Titans and my team for creating this incredible opportunity,” said Deji. “It’s a privilege to be headlining this phenomenal spectacle in Dubai against the all-time great Floyd Mayweather. This is going to be fun!”

One of the most technologically advanced arenas in the world and located in the City Walk in Dubai, the beautiful 17,000-seat Coca-Cola Arena opened in 2019 and regularly hosts events that include concerts, sport, family entertainment and ceremonies.

Giants’ Daboll on Shepard: ‘It kind of looked like a freaky accident there’

The New York Giants(2-1) suffered their first loss of the season on Monday night as they fell to the Dallas Cowboys 23-16 at MetLife Stadium, and unfortunately, they lost a key piece on offense.

On Tuesday, Giants head coach Brian Daboll announced that WR Sterling Shepard would miss the rest of the season with a torn left ACL.

Shepard, who is coming off a torn Achilles last season, injured his ACL late in the game against the Cowboys.

“ACL. Got that news just about 15 minutes ago in the doctors’ meeting,” Daboll said. “And again, to reiterate what I said yesterday, he’s a tremendous person. He worked so diligently to get back, and (I) feel terrible for him that he had that injury. He’s a big part of our team, and we’ll miss him out on the field.

It was a non-contact injury, and it appeared that Shepard was jogging along when it happened. According to Daboll, it was a “freak accident.”

“He’s just slowing down,” Daboll said. “It could have happened; I’m not saying it happened; you see a couple of plays before where he turns when he’s running an in-cut, and he’s extended. He went out there on the next play and did something. Again, it kind of looked like a freaky accident there.”

It was a big blow for Shepard, who put in the work to get back on the field and a big blow for the Giants as they’ve battled injuries at the wide receiver position(Wan’Dale Robinson, Kadarius Toney). 

Neal struggles

Giants rookie RT Evan Neal struggled to block Cowboys DE DeMarcus Lawrence, who had three of Dallas’ five sacks. Despite the struggles, Daboll is not worried about Neal.  

“We just keep on building the technique,” Daboll said. “There’s growing pains. I would say it’s not just Ev (Evan Neal), which he got beat a couple times on the edge by a pretty good player. There was a lot of things we could have done better. And protection-wise, after going through it, whether it’s the chips, the (running) backs, one-one-ones against the blitzers, the inside movement, the games inside. There was quite a bit of things. But Evan’s a diligent guy. We’ll work on improving him and try to be better next week.

New York will have a short week as the Bears(2-1) come to town on Sunday.

Official: Cavs extend Dean Wade

The Cleveland Cavaliers have signed forward Dean Wade to a multi-year contract extension, the team announced on Tuesday.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, it’s a three-year, $18.5 million contract. The team picked up his fourth-year option in June, and now he’s locked up for the next few seasons.

“The Cavs gave me a real opportunity; I think that’s the biggest thing,” Wade said after practice today. “I’m thankful for the organization, coaching staff, everything. They gave me a real opportunity to show what I can do. I got lucky, and they kept me. It’s been a crazy journey. I’m just thankful for it.”

Wade appeared in 51 games (career-high 28 starts) for the Cavaliers last season, averaging 5.3 points and 2.9 rebounds in 19.2 minutes per contest. The 6-9 forward also scored in double-figures on 11 occasions and registered one double-double.

The 25-year-old, who signed a two-way contract with the Cavs after he went undrafted in 2019 out of Kansas State, has spent his entire three-year NBA career with the Cavaliers, appearing in 126 regular season games (47 starts) with averages of 5.3 points and 3.0 rebounds in 18.0 minutes per game.

The Cavs have a hole at the 3-spot after trading Lauri Markkanen, and with his length and defensive ability, Wade could easily be a starter for this team in 2022-23. 

Nico Ali Walsh to battle Billy Wagner on Loma-Ortiz undercard

Middleweight prospect Nico Ali Walsh, the grandson of “The Greatest,” is set to make his New York City return.

Ali Walsh will fight Billy Wagner in his first scheduled six-rounder Saturday, Oct. 29 at Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden. Ali Walsh-Wagner joins the undercard of the lightweight main event between former pound-for-pound king Vasiliy Lomachenko and the unbeaten Jamaine “The Technician” Ortiz. In the featherweight co-feature, two-time Cuban Olympic gold medalist Robeisy Ramirez battles former world champion Jessie Magdaleno.

The entire Lomachenko-Ortiz card will stream live and exclusively in the U.S. on ESPN+.

“I am thrilled to be back in action on another significant card. Lomachenko is one of the greats of his era,” Ali Walsh said. “My first year as a professional has been a tremendous learning experience, and I have a great team to help me get to the next level. I respect Billy Wagner and am preparing to showcase everything I’ve learned in the gym from my incredible trainer, Kay Koroma.”

Ali Walsh (6-0, 5 KOs) made his pro debut in August 2021 with a first-round knockout and has been dominant in the paid ranks apart from one minor hiccup. Last December, he made his Madison Square Garden debut and edged Reyes Sanchez by majority decision. Following a pair of quick knockouts to start his 2022 campaign, he fought Sanchez in an August rematch at Pechanga Arena San Diego, the same building where Muhammad Ali lost to Ken Norton via split decision in 1973. Ali Walsh cleared up any doubt, doubling over Sanchez with a left hook to the liver in the second round. Wagner (5-2, 1 KO), from Browning, Montana, has won two straight since a February 2021 knockout loss to Javier Martinez inside the MGM Grand Bubble.

Brady on Bucs’ offense: ‘Our job is to go out there and score points, so we haven’t’

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers(2-1) suffered their first loss of the season as they fell to the Packers(2-1) 14-12 in Tampa Bay on Sunday. 

The talk all week was this possibly being the last matchup between Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers, but the defenses ruled the day as both teams combined for 26 points.

However, despite their offensive struggles, the Bucs almost sent it into overtime. Late in the game, the Buccaneers had an opportunity to tie the game on a two-point conversion after Brady connected with Russell Gage on a one-yard touchdown pass.

But, on the two-point conversion try, the Buccaneers got pushed back five yards after a delay of the game penalty. After the penalty was marked off, the Buccaneers attempted the play, but Packers LB De’Vondre Campbell deflected Brady’s pass, and the Packers held on.

After the game, Buccaneers head Todd Bowles discussed his reaction to the penalty.

“We got a delay of game, we didn’t get set up fast enough, and it’s something that can’t happen,” he said.

“It wasn’t just that moment; there were a few things that happened that we can’t let happen. We got six crucial penalties at different times that cost us the ball game –shooting ourselves in the foot to give us a chance to win. We know they’re a good football team – hats off to them, but we made some dumb mistakes ourselves.”

Brady, who completed 31-of-42 passes for 271 yards and one touchdown, said it was bad execution on the two-point conversion try.

“There’s a lot to it, so bad execution on offense at a time where we needed good execution, and we didn’t get it,” he said. “There was a lot of other times where we had a lot of other bad execution, and I think the reality is when you do that, you don’t have the opportunity to score points. There were too many plays where we were behind the sticks and not good on third down – penalties, turnovers, missed opportunities. Defense played great, we [have to] play better on offense – we [have to] do [much] better job – we haven’t scored many points all season, so three games, we [have to] get a lot better.”

In the first three games, Tampa Bay’s offense has struggled, and they have not scored over 20 points this season. Yes, not having Chris Godwin(hamstring), Julio Jones(knee), and Mike Evans(suspension) on the field against the Packers doesn’t help, but according to Brady, in the end, the team’s execution has to be better.

“Our job is to go out there and score points, so we haven’t – we’re just not doing it, but you’re not going to score points if we don’t execute well,” Brady said. “They did a better job than us. They have a good defense – a good physical defense. I give them a lot of credit. They forced us to make a lot of good plays, and we just didn’t do a great job on execution.”

Tampa Bay has to be better on offense. The defense got the job done as they held the Packers to 14 points, and on most days, that should be enough. However, because of Tampa Bay’s offense, it wasn’t enough.

Suns’ Crowder will not be with team during training camp, expected to be traded

The Phoenix Suns and forward Jae Crowder have mutually agreed that he will not be with the club for training camp, the team announced Sunday.

According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, the two sides will work on a trade.

Last season, Crowder, whose role was expected to change with Cam Johnson being inserted in the starting lineup, started 67 games for the Suns and averaged 9.4 points and 5.3 rebounds per contest.

The 32-year-old is scheduled to make $10.1 million in the final year of his contract and has helped Phoenix have a lot of success during his two seasons with the team, including a vital role on the team that made the NBA Finals in the 2020-21 season. 

Crowder can help a team and is a winning player. The 10-year veteran has been to the Finals in two of the last three seasons(Heat, Suns).

Eagles’ Hurts: ‘I think we have yet to play our best ball’

The Philadelphia Eagles move to 3-0 as they defeated Carson Wentz and the Washington Commanders(1-2) 24-8 at FedExField on Sunday.

The Eagles led 24-0 at halftime but didn’t score the rest of the way. Philadelphia is 3-0 for the 10th time in franchise history (first time since 2016). The Eagles have also won each of their first two road games of the season for the first time since 2010.

Here’s the Great, Not so Great, and the Bottom Line of Philly’s big win over Washington.

The Great:

Defense: Philadelphia sacked Wentz eight times on Sunday, including two strip sacks. Brandon Graham led the Eagles with 2.5 sacks

During the first half, Philadelphia’s defense allowed zero points and 50 total yards (66 rushing, -16 passing) on 28 plays, along with six sacks(four sacks in the first quarter), two FFs, and one takeaway. In the last two weeks, Philly’s defense has allowed only two touchdowns, combining for 11.0 sacks and four forced turnovers. 

DeVonta Smith: He had career highs in both catches (eight) and yards (169). Also, Smith finished the game with a touchdown. The second-year receiver had seven of his eight receptions and 156 of his 169 receiving yards in the first half. After no receptions in Week 1, Smith has accumulated 15 receptions for 249 yards and a touchdown in the last two weeks.

Second Quarter: Hurts and the Eagles’ offense got off to a slow start and went scoreless in the first quarter. However, Hurts and the offense picked it up in the second quarter as they scored 24 points. The third-year quarterback threw three touchdowns passes. He finished the first half with 279 yards and three touchdowns and ended the game 22-35 for 340 yards and three touchdowns. 

The Not So Great:

Second Half Offense: For the second week in a row, the Eagles’ offense went scoreless in the second half. Fortunately, the defense was stout and kept the pressure on Wentz. Hurts threw for only 61 yards in the second half. They punted the ball on three of their five second-half possessions and allowed Washington to score their first points on a safety. However, they did get a first down on their final possession and did not allow Washington to get the ball back.

Bottom Line:

The Eagles get another big win and move to 3-0, and for the second week in a row, the defense played a complete game. Now, the offense has to be good for four quarters, not just one or two.

This season, in three games, Philadelphia has scored 72 points(24.0 points average) in the first half. However, in the second half, they scored only 14 points(4.6 points average). This trend has to get fixed. Back to the defense, they have been stellar after a subpar game in Week 1 against the Lions. If the defense continues at this level, Philadelphia will be tough to beat; we’ve seen this defense beat up on average quarterbacks in 2021, and that trend continues in 2022. 

Wentz was under a lot heat on Sunday, and while it’s still early, it appears the Eagles made the right choice in selecting Hurts to replace Wentz. Round 1 went to Hurts and the Eagles, but Round 2 will be in November.

Quotables:

“I think we have yet to play our best ball yet,” Hurts said. “I think we’re close in terms of executing on a consistent basis through all four quarters of the football game. Last year, I remember being asked the question of ‘How close are you? You’re saying this every week?’ Well I think it’s the same situation here. Just got three wins in our column but I could care less about it because we haven’t played to our standard yet. If we can continue to strive and play to our
standard, everything else will handle itself. It’s a day-by-day thing.”

What’s Next:

Philadelphia will battle their former coach Doug Pederson and the Jacksonville Jaguars(2-1) next Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field.

Best of the Rest:

-Wentz finished the game, completing 25-of-43 passes for 211 yards. He added three rushes for 22 yards.

-A.J. Brown finished 85 yards on five receptions (17.0 avg.) with a touchdown during today’s game. The score marked the first touchdown of Brown’s career as an Eagle.

-Dallas Goedert totaled three catches for 26 yards and a touchdown. Goedert leads all NFL tight ends in 20-plus yard receptions this season.

Spurs’ Johnson injures shoulder

San Antonio forward Keldon Johnson suffered a right shoulder posterior dislocation, the team announced Saturday.

Johnson. 22, injured the shoulder during the team’s open gym and has started actively rehabbing.

According to the Spurs, he will miss the start of the preseason schedule, but Johnson is expected to be available for the start of the regular season.

Last season, Johnson averaged a career-high 17.0 points per contest and is one the team’s best players.  During the offseason, the Spurs awarded Johnson as he signed a four-year, $80 million rookie scale contract extension.

In addition, San Antonio announced their training camp roster. which currently stands at 20 players. The Silver and Black return 11 players from last season and features six of San Antonio’s first round draft picks from the last four years, as well as six offseason additions.

Head coach Gregg Popovich returns to lead the Spurs for the 27th straight season. San Antonio’s training camp wil:l run Sept. 27 – Oct. 2 before kicking off the 2022-23 campaign with a preseason matchup at Houston on Sunday, Oct. 2.

The Spurs will open the regular season at home on Wednesday, Oct. 19 against the Charlotte Hornets.

2022-23 SAN ANTONIO SPURS TRAINING CAMP ROSTER:

               
No.

Player

Pos. Ht. Wt. DOB Prior to NBA/Home Country Yrs.
3 Keldon Johnson G/F 6-6 210 10/11/99 Kentucky/USA 3
7 Josh Richardson G 6-5 200 09/15/93 Tennessee/USA 7
10 Jeremy Sochan F 6-8 225 05/20/03 Baylor/Poland-England R
11 Josh Primo G 6-5 190 12/24/02 Alabama/Canada 1
14 Blake Wesley G 6-5 185 03/16/03 Notre Dame/USA R
15 Joe Wieskamp G/F 6-6 210 08/03/99 Iowa/USA 1
17 Doug McDermott F 6-8 225 01/03/92 Creighton/USA 8
18 Isaiah Roby F 6-8 230 02/03/98 Nebraska/USA 3
19 Alize Johnson F 6-7 210 04/22/96 Missouri State/USA 4
22 Malaki Branham G 6-5 195 05/12/03 Ohio State/USA R
23 Zach Collins F/C 6-11 250 11/19/97 Gonzaga/USA 4
24 Devin Vassell G 6-6 195 08/23/00 Florida State/USA 2
25 Jakob Poeltl C 7-0 240 10/15/95 Utah/Austria 6
26 Dominick Barlow* F 6-10 220 05/26/03 Overtime Elite/USA R
27 Tommy Kuhse G 6-2 185 10/21/96 Saint Mary’s (CA)/USA R
31 Keita Bates-Diop F 6-8 230 01/23/96 Ohio State/USA 4
33 Tre Jones G 6-2 185 01/08/00 Duke/USA 2
35 Romeo Langford G/F 6-5 215 10/25/99 Nebraska/USA 3
41 Gorgui Dieng F/C 6-10 250 01/18/90 Louisville/Senegal 9
55 Jordan Hall* G 6-8 220 01/14/02 St. Joseph’s (PA)/USA R
*Two-way Contract
Head Coach: Gregg Popovich (Air Force)
Assistant Coaches: Brett Brown (Boston University)
  Mitch Johnson (Stanford)
Matt Nielsen (Australia)
Darius Songaila (Wake Forest)

Josh Warrington to defend title on December 10

Josh Warrington will defend his IBF World Featherweight title against Luis Alberto Lopez at the First Direct Arena in Leeds on Saturday December 10, live worldwide on DAZN – and Matchroom and DAZN can announce that the Light-Flyweight unification clash between Hiroto Kyoguchi and Kenshiro Teraji will be broadcast live on DAZN in Europe when the pair clash in Saitama, Japan on Tuesday November 1.

Warrington (31-1-1 8 KOs) regained the IBF strap when he stopped Kiko Martinez in his Leeds fortress in March, with the hometown hero flooring the Spaniard in the opening round before ending matters in the seventh round to punctuate a blistering performance in front of his adoring fans.

The 31 year old suffered a broken jaw in his second career win over Martinez but has fully recovered and now aims to take care of a dangerous mandatory challenge before targeting unification blockbusters.

“So we are back at the Leeds Arena, back for the 12th and potentially final time,” said Warrington. “I’m very excited to be back in Leeds. I started the year very well with a sensational 7th round stoppage against Kiko Martinez to recapture my IBF belt and now finishing the end of the year defending my belt to my mandatory who’s a tough Mexican and has waited a long time to fight me.

“It’s going to be a hard fight, he comes forward, he’s wild and erratic, I’ve got history with Mexican fighters, but I’m hoping to put on a great performance in front of my home crowd.

“I’ve been saying it for so long about going over to the States and fighting in a unification fight. That’s the dream but due to delays with injuries to my jaw and hand I have to fight my mandatory now. I’m fully focused on doing a job, getting the show closed early and finishing 2022 with a bang.”

Lopez (26-2 15 KOs) is no stranger to fighting in the UK having punched his ticket to fight for the title by stopping Isaac Lowe in an eliminator clash in London in December. The 29 year old Mexican has stayed busy while waiting for his chance to tackle Warrington, notching stoppage wins in April and August, and will travel to Leeds with ambitions to emulate the stunning KO win his fellow countryman Mauricio Lara inflicted on the Warrington in February 2021.

“I remember, not too long ago, when a Mexican fighter knocked Josh out in his country,” said Alberto Lopez. “On December 10, in his hometown, I am going to silence his fans. The IBF Featherweight title will return to Mexico. I dedicate this fight to the Mexican people and everyone from my hometown of Mexicali. This one’s for you, and Josh, enjoy that belt while you still have it.”

An announcement on ticket sales for Warrington vs. Alberto Lopez will be made soon.

Before that showdown, the focus is on Japan and what promises to be a scintillating fight when WBA ruler Kyoguchi and WBC king Teraji put their belts on the line as the Light-Flyweight division makes moves to crown an undisputed champion.

Kyoguchi (16-0 11 KOs) shone in his last outing, stopping Esteban Bermudez in eight thrilling rounds in Guadalajara in June, his fourth successful defence of the title he ripped from Hekkie Budler in May 2018. Teraji (19-1 10 KOs) regained his WBC crown in March in a rematch with Masamichi Yabuki, landing a third round stoppage in Kyoto to gain instant revenge over his fellow countryman last September, where Yabuki ended Teraji’s five year reign as WBC king with a shock tenth round stoppage win.

The card features a more than interested observer as Puerto Rico’s Johnathan Gonzalez (26-3-1 14 KOs) will look to successfully defend his WBO Light-Flyweight title against the unbeaten Shokichi Iwata (9-0 6 KOs) before taking his seat at ringside to take in the main event with hopes of a unification battle with the winner.

“I cannot wait to be back in Leeds, one of the best atmospheres in the world,” said Eddie Hearn. “It’s great to have Josh back in the ring and ready to thrill again, and those fans will play a big part in getting their hero over the line in a tough fight with the dangerous Mexican Alberto Lopez.

“Before that, we’ve got a brilliant night of boxing in Japan on November 1. Hiroto has become the number one Light-Flyweight in the world, but Kenshiro will want to take that title and the WBA belt to boot – this fight cannot fail to entertain, fireworks are guaranteed, and the winner will take a massive step towards an undisputed bout.”