The Cavaliers’ roster is essentially the same this year as last year.

“He is built sort of like Jae Crowder, he is big up top and is a physical player,” the international scout said. “But he has more offensive potential. He is already a pretty good shooter from the perimeter, and he is athletic, but he needs to get smoother with his game. He is not going to back anyone down, even at his size, so he needs to work on his ballhandling. But he can rebound and he can score, he will be a very solid NBA player.”

An added bonus has been the play of burly swingman Abdel Nader—chosen with the 58th pick out of Iowa State in the D-League this year. Nader agreed to forgo signing a contract in Europe to stay stateside and play for the Maine Red Claws, and he has been impressive, averaging 22.6 points, 6.1 rebounds and 3.6 assists, shooting 40 percent from the 3-point line.

Nader should figure into the Celtics’ future plans, but with Yabusele and Zizic also expected to be on the roster next season, plus at least one more rookie chosen with the Brooklyn pick, the roster would be crowded with first-year players. Unless, that is, the Celtics use these assets in the next three weeks.

According to sources around the league, the Cavs have been pretty dormant on the trade-talk front since acquiring Korver. “I would say they’re waiting for March 1,” one front-office executive said. That’s when the Cavs can bring aboard a free agent who is waived after the trade deadline. Bulls guard Rajon Rondo, unhappy in Chicago, has been mentioned as a possibility.

The Cavaliers’ roster is essentially the same this year as last year. The major loss was US Cheap Jerseys Club backup guard Matthew Dellavedova, and while Cleveland misses him — and James was not happy Texas Rangers Cheap Jerseys to lose him — his absence doesn’t explain all of the team’s problems.

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Feels like superstar players are landing on the disabled list way too often this season, doesn’t it?

And, finally, I’m not including stars on teams that didn’t have much in the way of playoff prospects anyway, guys like Freddie Freeman in Atlanta or Danny Duffy in Kansas City.

Here’s why: After Sunday’s games, the Nats’ bullpen has the highest batting average against (.287) and OPS allowed (.843) in the majors, is tied for the worst WHIP (1.50) with Mets relievers and has MLB’s second-highest ERA at 5.40, trailing only the Mariners.

Losing games in the ninth inning has been so demoralizing,б▒ Nationals GM Mike Rizzo told USA Today. It’s certainly not the way you want to go through a season. You look at our team, and all of the great performances and great seasons we’re having, and nobody is talking about it. It’s all about the bullpen and how those guys are struggling. It gets old.

We’ve got guys that are underperforming in the bullpen, and that’s Baseball Jerseys For Sale on me to take care of it.б▒

The Nationals are 26-17, seven games up on the Braves in the NL East and only a half-game back of the league’s best record. They boast a strong offense, solid enough defense and a star-studded rotation. But that bullpen бн

Rangers’ Josh Hamilton has another knee surgery, will miss opening day

If a fourth knee surgery in less than two years doesn’t officially mean the end of Josh Hamilton’s career, surely he can see it from here.

The former American League MVP underwent arthroscopic surgery Monday to repair the meniscus in his left knee, the Rangers told reporters. That’s the same knee in which Hamilton suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament last summer, though no new issues were discovered with the ACL.

Even so, it will be at least six weeks before the 35-year-old is cleared to begin running again, ensuring that he will be sidelined past opening day as his injury-wracked career winds down.

That I was slow off the ball, Garrett said Saturday of Smith’s assessment of him, per ESPN.com. … Every now and then, a couple plays. He was just like, ‘Yeah, you need to be faster.’

The film the two watched together was from Texas A&M’s game against UCLA, when Garrett had 1.5 tackles for loss and a sack in a 31-24 overtime win for the Aggies.

Garrett said this is the first time he remembers being criticized for lack of speed.

He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.57 seconds at Texas A&M’s pro day, an improvement from the 4.64 he posted at the NFL Combine. Those are excellent times for a defensive end of Garrett’s size (6-5, 272 pounds).

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Texans keeping Osweiler-O’Brien fight quiet was best move of free agency

The story that Pro Football Talk broke over the weekend about Brock Osweiler’s locker-room scuffle and/or insubordination in the Texans’ season finale is another reminder that news always gets out, especially bad news.

But it didn’t get out before Rick Smith unloaded Osweiler and his contract on the Browns. If that doesn’t give him a leg up on 2017 NFL executive of the year, nothing does.

Altering game play for the sake of expediency (MLB vice president Joe Torre, in disclosing the experiment, cited concerns about extra-inning games dragging) is always wrong. Baseball currently has it right by playing until there’s a winner. Basketball has it right by playing five-minute overtimes. The NFL doesn’t quite have it right with its 15-minute sudden-death period.

MLB, then, is needlessly wading into college football and NHL territory. College football games become red zone drills. The NHL turns regular-season games into skills competitions with its three-on-three overtime and shootouts. These setups are material departures from what transpires during the first 60 minutes. Regardless of whether fans get jacked for these innovations, they’re still wrong.

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Cardinals’ Matt Carpenter withdraws from WBC with back stiffness

Cardinals manager Mike Matheny told reporters Saturday that Matt Carpenter’s lower back stiffness has forced him to withdraw from Team USA’s roster for the World Baseball Classic.

Of greater concern to the Cardinals and their fans is Carpenter’s progress going forward in recovering from the ailment that has sidelined him the past three days. Matheny said the veteran is concerned the tightness could aggravate his oblique muscle. He missed a month of the 2016 season because of a strained right oblique.

A hip problem in 2016 — the first year of a three-year, $48 million contract — triggered a back injury and then inflammation in his neck, landing him on the disabled list for a month. Kazmir finished the season 10-6 in 26 starts with a 4.56 ERA, 1.36 WHIP and 0.2 WAR.

Asked how often he was at his best last year, Kazmir said: Maybe one start. It’s definitely frustrating. I’m not able to show everyone, show the fans, show my teammates, what I’m capable of doing.

At 33, he is a group of pitchers — along with Brandon McCarthy, Hyun-Jin Ryu and Julio Urias — vying to fill the fourth and fifth spots in the Dodgers rotation behind Clayton Kershaw, Rich Hill and Kenta Maeda.

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Josh Hamilton expects to make Rangers’ opening day roster

Josh Hamilton has had a pair of knee surgeries since last appearing in a major league game and doesn’t seem to have a position with the Rangers, but he still believes he’ll open the season with Texas.

Sure, the former American League MVP said Thursday, via MLB.com. If I’m healthy, I know I’ll get out there and perform.

Hamilton admitted considering retirement, acknowledging how difficult it would be for him to approach the levels he performed at during his first stint with Texas, but ultimately decided to take one last shot.

I have a lot left, he said. A whole lot. I’ve got a good feeling.

During the trial, prosecutors argued DeCinces used non-public information passed along by a Laguna Beach neighbor to make a windfall in a corporate merger while helping friends and family members do the same.

DeCinces reportedly cleared about $1.3 million when Advanced Medical Optics was bought out by Abbott Laboratories in 2008 for about four times the price at which the former company’s stock was being traded.

David Parker, a friend of DeCinces’ who also profited from the deal, was convicted on three counts Friday. The jury was deadlocked on charges against the man who provided DeCinces with the information, James Mazzo, prompting the judge to declare a mistrial.

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NFL free agency: Kevin Zeitler honest about going where the money is: Cleveland

Few free agents say the biggest reason they signed with a new team was the money even if that was the case.

Kevin Zeitler deserves credit for honesty after inking the largest free-agent contract for a guard in NFL history.

Appearing on SiriusXM NFL Radio, Zeitler told co-host Bill Polian and me the five-year, $60 million deal tendered by the Browns was why he spurned an offer from the Saints to leave the Bengals.

On April 6, Mazza was the pitcher for Tebow’s first professional dinger, a shot that just cleared the left-center field wall in Columbia, S.C. Mazza had a tough night in general, allowing seven runs (all earned) in 2 2/3 innings.

The 22-year-old left-hander responded with a pair of decent outings on April 12 and 18, but he threw just a combined nine innings in those starts. In fact, he threw 81 pitches his last time out, when he lasted just five. Now he has gone nine on just 85.

That’s a high-class Maddux, no matter the level of ball.

If the baseball thing doesn’t work out for Mazza, he might have a future in golf. The (San Jose) Mercury News noted Mazza finished second in the World Long Drive Championship main event in 2010 as a high school junior. He crushed a drive a reported 436 yards.

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Twins offer to help clothe Beyonce’s growing family

The Minnesota Twins aren’t expected to get many wins on the field in 2017, but they’ve already scored one on social media.

A day after Beyonce announced that she’s pregnant with her own set of twins, the Minnesota version offered to help clothe the mega-star’s growing family with a set of personalized jerseys.

The team isn’t waiting for an answer, asking simply, “Where should be send these?”

“Until I had surgery on both my knees in August, 2014.”

Swisher’s MLB career began in 2004 with the A’s. He left Oakland to Cheap Braves Jerseys join the Yankees in 2009, the last time the Pinstripers won the World Series, and he stayed in New York through the 2012 season. He spent the 2013, 2014 and part of the 2015 season with the Cleveland Indians and played his last major league games with the Braves in 2015.

In July 2016, he opted out of a minor-league deal with the Yankees after the birth of his second daughter.

Swisher, an outfielder and first baseman, hit .249 for his career, belting 245 home runs and 803 RBIs.

Chris Correa, the Cardinals’ former director of amateur scouting, pleaded guilty in January 2016 to five criminal charges involving unauthorized access to the Astros database.

The Cardinals fired Correa in 2015, and he currently is serving a 46-month sentence in federal prison.

St. Louis Cardinals Chairman and CEO William O. DeWitt Jr. said in a statement the club supports the commissioner’s decision.