July 27, 2005
Greg Maddux:
Becomes 13th pitcher to reach 3000 Ks. (Yes, that's more impressive than 3000 hits, if only because half as many players have reached the mark.)
The Lead Item
Two Words For You:

The Larry Brown Era in New York is about to begin.

Brown is the NBA's best coach and a "sport-lebrity" worthy of the New York spotlight. But he's the wrong guy for these Knicks.

Let's review:

Brown makes good teams great:
The Pistons showcased Brown at his best: Nudging a team on the precipice to a title. But the Knicks aren't even good; they're terrible. So...

Brown makes bad teams good:
...And then he bolts. So Knicks fans can expect instant short-term improvement, which means .500 records and shoddy draft positions.

Last rebuilding job? Olympics.
Oh, wait: Brown rarely bothers considering long-term fixes like the draft. He loathes young players. Keeping LeBron and Dwyane on the Olympic bench triggered the Athens humiliation for the U.S. Enjoy the pine, Channing Frye.

Right team, wrong time:
Brown is right about one thing: At its best, the Knicks job is the tops in the NBA. But this is no quick fix ... and Brown has the commitment problems of a college freshman on his first wander through the sorority quad.

Massive egos involved:
This smacks of a vanity play, both for Brown and his boss, Isiah. (Right: "Boss." This'll be fun to watch, particularly when Zeke gets ousted.)

As I argued a week ago, the Knicks finally accepted that "rebuilding" isn't a bad word.

Knicks fans are obsessed with the "glory days." Brown returns the Knicks to the old days, all right: The old days of the "quick fix."

Part 2 coming tomorrow:
The Knicks in June 2008.

Seahawks Sign RB
Seattle inks star Alexander to 1-year deal that allows Shaun to be a complete free agent after this season. (via ESPN.com's Len P.)

Anyone else notice an incentive problem? How can Alexander have both eyes on the goal line in front of him when one eye will always be on 2006?

NFL Camping
Today's openers:

Colts (Terre Haute, Ind.)
Key plot: How to beat Pats?

Al Michaels: Will stay with MNF in move to ESPN in '06
Thrashers GM Don Waddell: Named honcho of USA Hockey 06
Gary Hogeboom: Ex-Cowboys QB will be on next "Survivor"
Nats: Cordero blows save; Ayala walk-off walk in L to ATL
Matt Clement: Red Sox All-Star SP TKO'ed by comebacker
Nomar's 1st rehab game: Pushed back from Tues to today
Meanwhile: Edge James will report to camp despite being given only a one-year "franchise" deal from the Colts. (again, via Len P.)

Packers (DePere, Wis.)
Key plot: Favre vs. Walker

Yankees Dealing?
Yankees getting desperate? Kevin Brown is the Walking Scratch. Carl Pavano is behind schedule on recovery. Jaret Wright? Don't ask.

That ups the pressure on the Yankees to make a deal for a starting pitcher they seem to need, in addition to the outfielder they seem to want.

That might explain the added spice to the plotline to grab Seattle OF Randy Winn -- rumors that the Yanks want SP Gil Meche, too. (via Seattle P-I)

More Trade Rumors
Does Manny want out? Well, it's not like Theo will accommodate him, so everyone can just let it go. (via SI)

Ponson to Rangers? Why have GMs when pushy, hands-on owners like Angelos and Hicks can tinker with a deal themselves? (via DAL M-N)

Soriano to Mets? Call it "Texas Hold 'Em" with a limit -- Rangers just waiting on the Mets to freak out and cave on Texas' demands.

Astros want RP? Because market for hitters is too overvalued, says GM Purpura. Says he's 50/50 about dealing by Sunday. (via Houston Chron)

What about Burnett? How did he go from trading deadline's hottest commodity to non-starter? ChiSox think price too high. (via Chicago S-T)

Games: NCAA CFB '06
This year's cool hook: You make a run at the Heisman, from high school recruit through your senior year.

My prep accomplishments as a QB earned me scholarship offers from Northern Illinois, Wake Forest and Northwestern (my actual alma mater!).

I moved into the dorm in Evanston, then promptly joined the same tradition of on-field mediocrity that NU QBs have been upholding for years.

Well, at least I can fall back on that degree; perhaps one day I'll get a job merely making catty comments about sports...

50/50: MT
Impressions of Montana:

P-Jax offseason home: So this is where Phil Jackson decided to return to the insanity of the Lakers?

Fly-fishing hot spot: "River Runs Through It" is probably the best book about fishing ever written. (Yes, it counts as a sports book.)

Vote Best of Montana here!

Brian Vickers:
NASCAR driver came off like a fool last night during a "Daily Show" segment on hair-care products as NASCAR sponsor. Who green-lighted THAT p.r. move?
Today on ESPN.com
Quickie live!
Tuesday's MQ
Scoop on Vegas
Brown's NY Starting 5
Stephon Marbury
History with PGs is spotty
Jamal Crawford
Larry will love his conscience
Quentin Richardson
The anti-Rip Hamilton
Power forward? Ha!
Fixing chicken salad...
Jerome James
Sonics import? Ouch.

In the biggest game of the MLS-Euro soccer exchange program, defending MLS champ D.C. United will play EPL champ Chelsea.

Loving revamped USA Hoops, especially its plan to make one-time, take-it-or-leave-it offers to players to sign up for 3-year roles. (via Wash Post)

Pistons deny report they wanted to trade Darko to the Hawks for Al Harrington. (via DET FreeP) (Over/under on when Darko Love ends? 01/01/06)

Here's to a healthy recovery for Lakers rookie Ronny Turiaf, who had heart surgery yesterday.

NBA Deals: Blazers sign another young swingman, Russian SG Sergei Monya, who they drafted in 2004.

Don't forget: You can chat LIVE with me and the smartest fans on ESPN.com every weekday morning from 9-10 a.m. ET on SportsNation. See Q It Up.

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