Review Category : National Sports

Jose Reyes Returns to Mets, Signing Minor League Contract

Scott Clarke / ESPN Images(NEW YORK) — Shortstop Jose Reyes signed a minor league contract with the New York Mets Saturday after becoming a free agent earlier in the day, according to ESPN.

Reyes was originally signed by the Mets in 1999 when he was a teenager out of the Dominicatn Republic.

According to ESPN, Reyes was a member of the Mets organization for 12 years and won the National League batting title in 2011. He then left the Mets for a 6-year, $106 million contract with the Miami Marlins.

After being suspended by the MLB for violating its domestic abuse policy, Reyes appeared in nine games with Triple-A Aluquerque, and last week, the Rockies designated him for assignment, ESPN reports.

The Mets announced Saturday that Reyes will report to Class A Brooklyn and is expected to play Sunday.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Stuntwoman Talks Latest Addition to Extreme Sports: Flyboarding

PowerFly/ABCNews.com(NEW YORK) — Flyboarding, when a rider zips around on a hoverboard propelled by water, is the very latest in extreme sports with a twist of sci-fi.

And stuntwoman Gemma Weston, a 29-year-old from New Zealand, is the number one female professional flyer in the world.

“Being able to fly is to push the boundaries of what is possible … you do literally feel like you are flying and you feel a little bit like a superhero,” she told Nightline.

The hoverboard and its rider “fly” into the air by the force of water pumped through a hose by a jet ski engine. Flyboarding was only invented in 2011 by professional French jet skier Frank Zapata, but once she saw it, Weston couldn’t resist.

Her intrinsic thrill-seeking spirit led her to a career as a stuntwoman. She has appeared in The Hobbit trilogy, Spartacus and Pete’s Dragon.

Weston can perform twists, dives and backflips as she zips over the open water. She entered the 2015 World Cup in Dubai as an unknown, and she crushed it, taking first place.

“My best trick I would say is one that I am not sure many people can do,” she said. “It’s basically a kind of side flip. I kind of go down and compress my body to the side and let my knees rise up over my body and kind of rotate so it’s kind of a forward moving side flip.”

After her World Cup win, she had two goals: winning big again this year and bringing Flyboarding to the masses.

Weston and her brother Beau Weston, also a Flyboarder, train in Melbourne, Florida, with Mark Baxter’s Powerfly Team.

“Gemma, she is something,” Baxter said. “She has a very natural talent for Flyboarding. When she came, it was actually a year ago, and here she is, the world champion.”

Baxter says the equipment is evolving as quickly as the sport. Already the best Flyboarders can control both board and jet ski at the same time by remote control, and Zapata is now developing a new futuristic-looking hoverboard that could remove the hose and jet ski attachment.

The Westons are one of the only brother-sister duos competing in extreme sports today, and the two competed at the 2016 Flyboarding European Championship in France earlier this month. Beau placed sixth, but his sister Gemma again placed first.

“New Zealanders are called ‘kiwis’ because that is our national bird, but it’s a flightless bird, so they can’t fly, but we’re proving Kiwis can fly,” Gemma Weston said.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Sources: Kevin Durant Top Target in Free Agency

Allen Kee / ESPN Images(OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla.) — After their NBA finals defeat, the Golden State Warriors are going to continue with their plans to pursue Kevin Durant in free agency, league sources told ESPN.

According to those sources, Durant is not the Warriors’ only option in free agency. However, they stressed that Durant will be the Warrior’s top target at the opening of the offseason marketplace on July 1.

ESPN reports Golden State and the San Antonio Spurs are considered the NBA’s top two threats to Oklahoma City’s efforts to keep Durant for the duration of the summer.

Sources told ESPN that the Warriors and Spurs are in the small list of teams that are planning to secure a meeting with Durant in person after he selects the teams he wants to court him at the start of the free agency.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Mom Drops Off NY Giants Cornerback Eli Apple at First Day of Practice

Joe Faraoni / ESPN Images(NEW YORK) — New York Giants cornerback Eli Apple may have made it to the big leagues, but he’s not too big of a star to deny his mother the pleasure of driving him to his first day of practice as an NFL player.

Early Thursday morning, Apple’s mom, Annie Apple, posted a video to Twitter of her driving up to the training facility at MetLife Stadium. She’s been driving Apple to football practice since he was a kid, she wrote, and couldn’t pass up the chance to drop him off at training camp.

“It’s Eli’s first day,” Annie says, with her excitement clear in her voice.

“Oh, we gotta go,” Eli responds, adding that he needs to “get to the bus.” His mother, however, ignores him and says, “Look at Eli’s little security man,” as the two pass a security guard standing at the front of the facility.

The proud mother then posted a video of her 20-year-old son walking toward the bus, narrating his every move, with the hashtag #MommyCam.

“Look at Eli,” Annie says, almost in disbelief. “Aw, he’s putting in his bag in the bus with other grown people.”

“This is so cool, dude,” Eli’s sister replies, before scolding her mother.

“Oh my god, Mom,” she says.

As Apple was directed by Giants staff on where to go, his mother didn’t seem to mind that someone else was telling her son what to do.

“Aw, he’s getting told what to do,” she says sentimentally. Apple then walks away and out of sight, careful not to acknowledge his mother’s antics at his new place of work.

Responding to a follower who asked why Apple couldn’t go to training camp alone, Annie had a brilliant response.

“We enjoy these important life moments as a family,” she wrote. “You only get one first day of OTAs.”

Annie Apple is a social media star in her own right, tweeting dozens of times a day to her nearly 22,000 followers. ESPN even called the newly minted Sunday NFL Countdown contributor the “Giants’ biggest social media star right now.”

The football mom’s tweets vary on the topics of family, politics and even the recent NBA Finals. She even occasionally live-tweets during The Bachelor. Apple said he doesn’t expect his mother to change, ESPN reported.

On Friday, Annie’s Twitter feed was filled with birthday wishes for the now 42-year-old.

Apple was the 10th overall pick in the NFL draft in April. The New Jersey native played for Ohio State University, winning the CFP National Championship in 2014.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

OKC’s Serge Ibaka Heads to Orlando in Multiplayer Trade

Allen Kee / ESPN Images(ORLANDO, Fla.) — Oklahoma City Thunder’s Serge Ibaka is headed to Orlando, Florida.

The Orlando Magic aquired the power forward Thursday night in exchange for guard Victor Oladipo, forward Ersan Ilyasova and the rights to forward Domantas Sabonis, who was chosen 11th overall in the NBA draft.

“Serge is a young veteran who brings tremendous athleticism and toughness to our frontcourt,” Magic General Manager Rob Hennigan said in a statement Thursday following the multiplayer trade. “His tireless work ethic and wealth of playoff experience will help enhance our culture and roster.”

Oklahoma City said the exchange positioned the team to build on its versatility, depth and skill.

“Victor, Ersan and Domantas represent the character, work ethic and toughness that we relentlessly pursue with the Thunder,” Thunder General Manager Sam Presti said. “Through the continued emergence and development of our core, we were able to capitalize on the opportunity to acquire three highly skilled professionals.”

Presti thanked Ibaka for his contributions to the team, saying he has “been integral to our success and growth, has been a great community member and we wish him only the best.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Sprint Cup Series Returns to Action at Sonoma

Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images(SONOMA, Calif.) — After a weekend off, NASCAR’s top-level circuit is back in action Sunday, June 26 at Sonoma Raceway in California for the Toyota — Save Mart 350. FS1’s coverage begins at 1:30 p.m. ET.

Kyle Busch, with three wins on the season and two previous wins at Sonoma, including last year, is looking to repeat. But repeating is tough — the last seven races at Sonoma have produced seven different winners.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Scoreboard Roundup — 6/23/16

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

INTERLEAGUE

Philadelphia 7, Minnesota 3

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Boston 8, Chi. White Sox 7/10 innings
Detroit 4, Seattle 4/10 innings
Oakland 5, Anaheim 4

NATIONAL LEAGUE

San Francisco 5, Pittsburgh 3
Atlanta 4, N.-Y. Mets 3
San Diego 7, Cincinnati 4
Florida 4, Chi. Cubs 2
Arizona 7, Colorado 6

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

2016 NBA Draft: Philadelphia 76ers Get Top Choice Ben Simmons

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Landing the first overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft last month, the Philadelphia 76ers picked its top choice: Ben Simmons, a 6-foot-10 forward from Louisiana State University.

With its selection at Thursday night’s draft, the 76ers now have a chance to revive the franchise after its bleak showing over the last three seasons. The team finished this past season 10-72, and won just 47 games in the last three seasons combined.

Duke’s Brandon Ingram and California’s Jaylen Brown rounded out the top three draft picks, going to the Lakers and the Celtics, respectively.

Take a look at the top 10 NBA Draft selections for 2016:

  1. Philadelphia 76ers — Ben Simmons
  2. Los Angeles Lakers — Brandon Ingram
  3. Boston Celtics — Jaylen Brown
  4. Phoenix Suns — Dragan Bender
  5. Minnesota Timberwolves — Kris Dunn
  6. New Orleans Pelicans — Buddy Hield
  7. Denver Nuggets — Jamal Murray
  8. Sacramento Kings — Marquese Chriss (traded to Phoenix Suns)
  9. Toronto Raptors — Jakob Poeltl
  10. Milwaukee Bucks — Thon Maker

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

Philadelphia 76ers Seek No. 3 Draft Pick from Boston Celtics

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The Philadelphia 76ers already hold the No. 1 draft pick but now, the team is reportedly also trying to get their hands on the No. 3 pick.

Sources tell ESPN the Sixers have increased their efforts to get the pick from the Boston Celtics and are prepared to trade power forward Nerlens Noel and center Jahlil Okafor to make it happen.

The NBA Draft kicks off Thursday at 7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →

How the Zika Virus Threat Is Affecting Olympic Hopefuls’ Plans

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — With the Olympic Games just weeks away, some athletes are facing a difficult decision to either skip Rio de Janeiro over concerns about the Zika virus or attend the games and risk getting sick.

With the viral infection rates showing no signs of disappearing, some athletes have announced they will not attend the games. However, other athletes have said they plan to take extra precautions against the virus and at least one defiant athlete has said she is not worried about it.

While both men and women have expressed concerns, only women who are pregnant have been advised to avoid traveling to the Olympic Games due to ongoing Zika virus transmission, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Women who are considering pregnancy and men with partners who are pregnant are advised to take extra precautions while traveling and after returning from Zika-affected areas to protect their unborn from the virus.

In most cases, the virus results in minor symptoms, including fever, rash and pink eye, which clear up in about a week. In pregnant women, the virus has been found to cause severe birth defects including microcephaly.

Skipping the Olympics


Northern Irish Golfer Rory McIlroy

Today, Northern Irish golfer Rory McIlroy announced he would avoid the upcoming games. He joins a growing group of golfers who have said they plan to skip the Olympics due to fears of contracting the Zika virus.

“I’ve come to realize that my health and my family’s health comes before anything else,” McIlroy, 27, said in a statement released by his management company. “Even though the risk of infection from the Zika virus is considered low, it is a risk nonetheless and a risk I am unwilling to take.”

U.S. Cyclist Tejay van Garderen

The cyclist was the first U.S. athlete to say he would not attend the games due to concerns about the Zika virus especially because his wife is pregnant.

“I don’t want to risk bringing anything back that could potentially have an effect,” van Gardener said in a statement through USA Cycling earlier this year. “If the circumstances were different I would have loved to be selected again to represent the USA, but my family takes priority and it’s a decision I’m completely comfortable with.”

South African Golfer Charl Schwartzel

The golfer said his desire to start a family trumps the games.

Australian Golfer Marc Leishman

The Australian golfer said his wife’s health led him and his family to decide not to participate in the Olympic Games. Leishman’s wife nearly died from toxic shock syndrome last year, according to Golf.com.

“We have consulted with Audrey’s physician and due to her ongoing recovery and potential risks associated with the transmission of the Zika virus it was a difficult yet easy decision not to participate,” Leishman told Golf.com.

Concerned But Going


U.S. Tennis Player Serena Williams

The top women’s tennis player in the world said she will go the Olympics this summer, but added that she might take extra precautions.

Serbian Tennis Player Novak Djokovic

The top ranked men’s player, Novak Djokovic, said he will attend the Olympics this summer even though he has concerns about the Zika virus.

Not Worried About Zika


U.S Gymnast Gabby Douglas

A gold-medal winner during the last summer Olympics, Douglas has said she’s not letting any Zika fears stop her from her second round at the Olympics.

“It’s the Olympics. It’s the Olympics!” Douglas told USA Today earlier this year. “Mosquitoes, like, whatever. I’m going. This is my shot, this is big. I don’t care about no stupid bugs!”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Read More →