DALLAS Teams

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Dirk Nowitzki on national anthem protests: "Everybody has freedom of speech in this country. That's why we all love this country. I think it's definitely started a discussion. As preseason goes along, we'll have meetings with the team about stuff, what we want to do or how we can contribute to making this world a better place. We'll come up with a solution. I think if we do something, the whole team has to be on the same page. We'll go from there, but it's definitely something that has started a discussion in every locker room, and that's probably a good thing."

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Dirk Nowitzki on retiring rival Kevin Garnett: "KG and I had a few battles just because he was so intense, and he was a competitor, the fiercest competitor. He always wanted to win, always wanted to get an edge on you early. He tried to intimidate you at times, but that was just his style. I have nothing but respect for him and what he did for this league. He was probably one of the best all-around players this league has ever seen. ... It's been fun to compete against him. At times, we got into it a little bit, but it's just because both guys wanted to win. That was his style – intensity. He had a passion for the game that was incredible."

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Mavs SG Wesley Matthews looks sleek compared to last season. "I'm down probably eight pounds, and a lot of it is just being able to train," said Matthews, who was recovering from a ruptured Achilles' tendon a year ago. "You've got to understand that at this time last year, I wasn't able to run, wasn't able to move around."

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Bears among CFB's 'other guys'

Baylor is among a group of teams crashing the College Football Playoff picture in what Ryan McGee calls the "The Rise of the Other Guys." These teams are a rung below the big brand names that can and will push them in the playoff hunt. Flipping the field

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Andrew Bogut said he "would have asked for a buyout" if traded to a team other than the Mavs. ESPN.com reported in July that the Warriors presented the big man the option of being traded to the Mavs or Rockets. Bogut declined to specifically discuss the Houston possibility. "I like Dallas," he said

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Andrew Bogut dismisses concerns about increasing his minutes. "I've never had an injury from playing too many minutes," Bogut said. "It's always been car-wreck type of collisions. I've walked under too many ladders, I guess."

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

How much will Harrison Barnes watch the Warriors this season? "Zero," he said, emphasizing the point by forming an O with his right hand.

Todd Archer ESPN Staff Writer 

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant and Texas State Senator Royce West have settled their disputes "amicably" and withdrawn all claims and counterclaims against each other, according to Trey Crawford, the attorney for West.

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Harrison Barnes on Mark Cuban's involvement in the presidential campaign: "He's probably going to run in 2020, I think."

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Dirk Nowitzki on Harrison Barnes: "We think the sky's the limit for him. We want him to do a lot on offense. ... I think it's going to be fun to play with him, and he's definitely going to put in the work. There's been tons of guys who have told me they're gym rats and I've never seen them in there at nights. He's always in there."

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Dirk Nowitzki: "We should be able to have a great defensive lineup once I'm out."

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Mavs coach Rick Carlisle and owner Mark Cuban met with their team to discuss social issues and potential protests of the national anthem. "We're going to be 100 percent supportive of our guys with whatever they decide to do," Carlisle said. "My feeling is that our right to protest can bring important attention to the necessity to change. My further view is that protest backed by persistence and action always provides the best chance for meaningful change."

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Rick Carlisle on increased expectations for Harrison Barnes that come along with his max contract: "I talked to him this summer a lot about that. Bottom line is that it's a challenge that he's got to love to take on. The important thing is that an elevation in responsibility comes at the right rate."

LM Otero/AP Photo

Rangers hold steady in Power Rankings

The Rangers clinched the AL West on Friday and will now turn their attention toward trying to wrap up the best record in the American League. Cole Hamels and Yu Darvish looked ready to go for the postseason over the weekend. Week 25 Power Rankings

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

The Mavs will proceed deliberately with Dirk Nowitzki, Andrew Bogut and Devin Harris early in camp, coach Rick Carlisle said. The team is being cautious with Nowitzki and Bogut, who will be held out of contact work, and Harris is recovering from offseason toe surgery.

ESPN Stats & Info

Ezekiel Elliott is off to a hot start

The Cowboys rookie tallied 140 rushing yards on Sunday night, bringing his season total to 274. Per ESPN Stats & Info, that's the second-highest total through a player's first three games in team history.

Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images
3hSharon Katz & Jacob Nitzberg

Best and worst QB performances from Week 3

Aaron Rodgers threw four first half TDs, Ryan Fitzpatrick had six INTs. Check out the best and worst QBs in Week 3 so far, according to Total QBR.

Max Olson ESPN Staff Writer 

Texas coach Charlie Strong said after a week of "self-evaluation," he determined he did not need to make any staff changes. Defensive coordinator Vance Bedford is still running his defense. Strong said he has faith in Bedford and didn't think a coordinator change would accomplish much.

Max Olson ESPN Staff Writer 

Texas starting OG Kent Perkins received a one-game suspension for his DWI arrest last week and will receive counseling, perform community service and face further internal discipline. He'll miss the Longhorns' game against Oklahoma State this week.

Darren Rovell ESPN Senior Writer 

This Week In 1995: NFL sues Jerry Jones for $300 million for undermining league sponsorship deals. Jones had signed a deal with Pepsi when league had deal with Coke. Jones eventually was granted the right to do individual deals and today is the only team that controls the distribution of its own merchandise.