Thomas Vanek

Thomas Vanek

Federal authorities called Wild forward Thomas Vanek to Rochester, New York, on Monday for his connection to an ongoing gambling investigation, according to local news station News10NBC.

News10NBC reported that Vanek is not charged with any crime and arrived to the federal court building voluntarily with his lawyer for his connection to a federal case in which three men at local restaurant Marina Restaurant and Bar are facing 23 counts of illegal gambling.

According to agent Steve Bartlett, Vanek was asked to come in as a witness. Bartlett said Vanek is not a target and is not under suspicion for doing anything wrong.

A native of Austria, Vanek played for the Sabres from 2005-06 until he was traded to the Islanders last October. He was shipped to the Canadiens in March and signed a reported three-year, $19.5 million deal with the Wild in the offseason.

Blog Author: 
Nick Canelas

Maverick Carter, LeBron James‘ business parter, told ESPN.com’s Jason Whitlock in a podcast that neither he or anyone else in James’ inner circle told the superstar to return to the Cavaliers.

“This was a decision that LeBron made in his heart,” Carter told Whitlock. “We didn’t push him to do it. We don’t push him to do anything. If he asks our opinion or what did we think about the pros and the cons, we help him think through it. We don’t push him.”

Said Carter: “LeBron’s a 29-year-old man with lots of money, got a wife, two kids, one on the way. He makes his own decisions. He doesn’t need anyone pushing him any way, and a guy like that, you’re not going to push him either way. We’ll help him think through things and help him see through things, but he makes his own decision in his heart. Because, ultimately, he has to live with it. I’m not the one who has to show up and play games for any team.”

James announced his return to the Cavs on July 11 after four seasons with the Heat. He opted out of his contract with Miami shortly after the loss to the Spurs in the NBA Finals. Carter said he wasn’t sure if James would have returned to the Heat if they had won their third straight title.

“Logic says how could he not,” Carter said. “You’ve got to go for four. But who knows. The decision about Cleveland was bigger than basketball. It was in his heart.”

Carter said James informed Dwyane Wade of his decision before the Sports Illustrated piece was released.

Blog Author: 
Nick Canelas
Jameis Winston

Jameis Winston

Florida State football coach Jimbo Fisher said Monday he will not punish quarterback Jameis Winston for the Heisman Trophy winner’s supermarket citation in April.

“Not after we found out the story and what had happened and [what Winston did] was not a malicious thing,” Fisher told reporters at the annual ACC Kickoff. “It was not done with intent.”

Winston was caught shoplifting $32 worth of crab legs and crawfish at a Tallahassee, Florida, store. He was forced to reimburse the store and perform community service. He also was suspended from the baseball team.

The Leon County Sheriff’s Office said at the time of the incident it would not speculate whether Winston took the items intentionally.

“People need to realize, when you suspend him in baseball, you understand how important baseball is to him? That cut his heart out,” Fisher said. “If it was done maliciously, we may have done other things. It was a silly mistake and not done with any malicious doing, and you don’t punish a guy twice for the same crime.”

Blog Author: 
Nick Canelas
Steve Buckley joined the show to discuss Tony Dungy's comments on Michael Sam.

Any questions of Johnny Manziel‘s popularity were put to rest Monday when the NFL announced the rookie quarterback had the league’s top-selling jersey since April 1.

Johnny Manziel

Johnny Manziel

Manziel’s No. 2 outsold all other jerseys from April 1 to July 17 on NFLShop.com despite the late start after being drafted May 8. Dick’s Sporting Goods also said Monday said that Manziel’s jersey is its top seller.

Manziel was followed by Russell Wilson, Colin Kaepernick and Peyton Manning. Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was seventh on the list.

Manziel, of course, is not only popular on the field. He’s been even more recognized this summer for his life off the field.

But that doesn’t concern Browns coach Mike Pettine.

Pettine said Monday that Manziel’s off-field activity will be a “non-story” once training camp starts.

“It’s something that was a hot topic for the offseason just because of who he is,” Pettine said. “It’s a very unique thing. I don’t think he can get a handle on the why. Is his behavior that much different form the average NFL player?”

Blog Author: 
Nick Canelas
Marcell Dareus

Marcell Dareus

Bills defensive tackle Marcell Dareus will enter an NFL substance-abuse program in an attempt to have felony drug charges in Alabama dismissed, according to his attorney, Rod Giddens.

Giddens told The Associated Press Monday that Dareus was allowed to enter the program during a hearing in an Alabama courthouse earlier in the day.

Dareus was arrested and charged with possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia after being stopped by a state trooper May 5.

Dareus’ charges will be dismissed and potentially expunged if he successfully completes the program.

Blog Author: 
Nick Canelas
The top stories of the day as recounted by John Dennis.
The guys discussed Dungy's comments on Michael Sam.
John, Gerry and Dickerson opened the show discussing the Sox 5th straight win.
Donald Sterling

Donald Sterling

Clippers owner Donald Sterling met with former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer Monday afternoon to discuss the imminent $2 billion sale of the team, according to ESPN.com.

The two men reportedly had a “friendly conversation” at Sterling’s Beverly Hills home. It was their first meeting in person since Ballmer negotiated the sale with Shelly Sterling on May 29.

The original agreement called for the sale to close by July 15, with a possible extension to Aug. 15. If a deal still is not finalized by Sept. 15, the NBA has the option to resume termination proceedings and sell the team itself.

Sterling had initially been preparing to file a new suit in state court Monday morning. One potential explanation for his change of heart may be overwhelming debts he needs the money to pay off.

Darren Schield, chief financial officer of Sterling’s properties, said Monday that the owner may be forced to sell a chunk of his real estate empire to cover $500 million in loans if he doesn’t sell the Clippers.

Schield testified Monday that three banks are set to recall loans to Sterling because of his decision to dissolve The Sterling Family Trust.

If Sterling has to sell $500 million worth of apartment buildings it could destabilize the Los Angeles real estate market, according to Schield.

Blog Author: 
Nick Canelas