SportsNet - July 2012
The Russian Premier League is a long haul. It's 18 months long because of the enormous winter break. It started this weekend which is almost a month before most European leagues get underway. Zenit Saint Petersburg are the current champions but who will win the RPL this season?
Zenit ran away with the championship last season and nobody could catch them. Since then they have barely added to the squad but neither have they lost anyone. This shouldn't be a problem though as they haven't delved into the market for a few seasons now. They have the best defence in the league and their front six complement each other perfectly. I their opening game they walked over Amkar Perm with a 2-0 victory. It was a very comfortable victory as Amkar failed to break Zenit's solid defence. Kerzhakov scored both of the goals and his Euro 2012 performance looks to be behind him.
There have been many players that have risen to the occasion for each major in golf evidenced by the 15 winners for the past 15 majors. The 16th major, The British Open at the Lytham and St. Annes Course in Lancashire, England was no different when it brought out the 16th winner in 16 events, 52-year-old, Ernie Els. The only real surprise was how badly the weather forecast was off for the tournament.
Instead of rain and wind, there was sun and calm for the first three days. Adam Scott was the early leader tying the course record at 64 on Thurs. Brian Snedeker charged forward after Friday's play. Going into Sunday, Scott had a 4-shot lead after more brilliant play taking him to -11. On Sunday Scott was paired with Graeme McDowell and Tiger Woods was paired with Snedeker for the last two groups.
Manchester United are on the verge of signing 19-year-old Brazilian Lucas Moura from Sau Paulo. United defender Rafael da Silve claims he has told Sau Paulo midfielder Mourato join him at Old Trafford. United have already made a bid of £27 million bid which was rejected by the Brazilian side.
Moura has been strongly linked with a move to United in recent weeks and Sir Alex Ferguson's scout has been in constant touch with Sau Paulo officials. It is understood that United have made a bid of £32 million for the 19-year-old.
Rafael and Moura are currently on International duty representing their country in the London Olympics. The Old Trafford club was reported to have sent a delegation to Brazil to hold talks over a transfer for Lucas, who is currently in the UK with the Brazilian Olympic squad. Reports also claim Italian side Inter Milan are planning to hijack Lucas Moura's Manchester United transfer.
Although we sometimes like to believe that professional sports are all about passion and competition, there are often painful reminders that it is a business. A very major business move may be on the way in basketball.
In another income-generating move that could generate $100 million in revenues, the NBA is planning to put small sponsorship patches on the shoulder area of team jerseys starting the 2013-14 season.
"I think it's fair to say that our teams were excited about the opportunity and think there is potentially a big opportunity in the marketplace to put a two by two patch on the shoulder of our jerseys," deputy commissioner Adam Silver said after emerging from the NBA Board of Governors' annual summer meeting.
Silver said there was virtually unanimous support for adopting some form of jersey ads, like teams in other sports do, including car racing, golf, soccer and even the WNBA.
He said the matter was referred to the owners' planning committee, chaired by Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck, and guidelines are expected to be approved in September, in time for the 2013-14 season.
The acquisition of free-agent guard Courtney Lee by the Celtics has finally come to completion after they received some help from the Portland Trail Blazers.
After losing Ray Allen to the Miami Heat and starter Avery Bradley likely to miss the start of the season, Celtics made Houston Rockets shooting guard, Courtney Lee, as their number one priority. They were unable to finalize a sign-and-trade deal that would send Lee to Boston on Thursday night, but after the Trail Blazers were brought into the picture, a three-team trade was put together on Friday.
Lee, who will add to the Celtics' backcourt depth, has signed a four-year contract worth $21.5 million, according to Yahoo!Sports.com.
It looked like the Celtics were out of the running for Lee because of salary-cap constraints, but president of basketball operations Danny Ainge found a way to unload some players and draft picks to make it work.
The Celtics sent JaJuan Johnson, E'Twaun Moore and Sean Williams plus a 2013 second-round draft pick (which they received from the NBA as compensation in the Jeff Green trade) to the Rockets.