Celtics coach Ime Udoka faces lengthy suspension, plus Presidents Cup picks and predictions

Good morning to everyone but especially to…

GOLF FANS

The Presidents Cup begins today, and I could not be more excited for team golf to be back on my TV. It’s been a dramatic year for the sport and the Presidents Cup, which pits the United States against the rest of the world not including Europe, is no exception.

Much like the last several months, who’s not there will be a major talking point because no LIV Golf members are allowed. That means big names such as Cameron Smith, Dustin Johnson, Joaquin Niemann and Brooks Koepka won’t be taking part.

As for who is There, our golf expert Kyle Porter ranked all 24 players at Quail Hollowand — without giving away too much — the US has a near-sweep of the top 10. As a result, Kyle writes, this one might not be close at all as the US goes for its ninth straight victory.

  • Porter:Every player on the American side is ranked higher in the Official World Golf Rankings than all but three golfers on the International team. … Of course, one doesn’t win championships on paper, but this US team is experienced enough to snuff hope out if it even begins to bubble in the locker room across from theirs. Only Sam Burns, Billy Horschel, Cameron Young and Max Homa are new on the US side, and they have combined to win six PGA Tour events since last year’s Ryder Cup.”

Fellow golf guru Patrick McDonald has even gone as far as to say this could be one of the best President Cup squads ever assembled. If the US wants to live up to those expectations, it has to start today in the foursomes. Here are the matchups:

  • Patrick Cantlay & Xander Schauffele vs. Adam Scott & Hideki Matsuyama
  • Jordan Spieth & Justin Thomas vs. Corey Conners & Sungjae Im
  • Cameron Young & Collin Morikawa vs. KH Lee & Tom Kim
  • Sam Burns & Scottie Scheffler vs. Cameron Davis & Si Woo Kim
  • Tony Finau & Max Homa vs. Mito Pereira & Taylor Pendrith

As for everything else you need to know about the event:

Honorable mentions

And not such a good morning for…

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DAYTON MOORE

Dayton Moore once built a champion. Now he’s out of a job. The Royals have fired Mooretheir president of baseball operations who has been with the team since 2006. Team owner John Sherman cited a desire to take a more modern, data-driven approach.

  • Moore, 55, built a pennant-winning team in 2014 and then a World Series-winning team in 2015. It was the second World Series title in franchise history, along with 1985. Since 2015, however, the Royals have the fourth-worst record in MLB and have not posted a season above .500.
  • GM JJ Piccolo will now be the lead voice in baseball operations.

It’s been a slow fall for Moorewrites our MLB expert Dayn Perry.

  • Perry: “While some impressive young talent has emerged from the protracted rebuilding process– Bobby Witt Jr., most notably — the trajectory hasn’t been enough to spare Moore. They’ve graduated a recent number of promising prospects to the majors, but inability to develop young pitching has been a notable weakness in terms of player development.”

Not so honorable mentions

Celtics coach Ime Udoka facing suspension over consensual relationship with staffer 🏀

The details are slim at this point, but last night is reported that Ime Udoka is reportedly facing discipline, including a potential “significant” suspension, for having a consensual relationship with a staffer. In taking part in a relationship with the staffer, the head coach violated Boston’s code of conduct.

Udoka, 45, is entering his second year of coaching the Celtics after leading the team to an NBA Finals appearance last season. His job is not believed to be in jeopardy.

You can keep up with this story here as more details become known.

Robert Sarver to sell Suns, Mercury following workplace misconduct scandal

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Robert Sarver announced Wednesday that he is starting the process to sell both the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury. last week, the NBA banned Sarver for a year and fined him $10 million — the high amount of money allowed — following an investigation for workplace misconduct.

  • Among the findings of the investigation were that Sarver used the N-word on multiple occasionsmade inappropriate comments to and/or regarding womenengaged in inappropriate physical conduct toward male employees and engaged in demeaning and harsh treatment of employees.
  • Sarver released a not-so-apologetic statement when announcing his sale, saying in part, “In our current unforgiving climate, it has become painfully clear that [making amends] is no longer possible – that whatever good I have done, or could still do, is outweighed by things I have said in the past.”

Sarver has a 35 percent ownership stake in the Suns, which he bought for $401 million in 2004. The franchise is currently valued at $1.8 billion according to Forbes. For what it’s worth, the Timberwolves recently sold for $1.5 billion.

NFL Week 3 picks: Does anyone want to win the AFC North? 🏈

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The AFC North isn’t the best division in football, but it might be the most hectic.

We should get a little more clarity tonight when the Steelers visit the Brownstwo teams with underwhelming options at quarterback: Mitch Trubisky and Jacoby Brissett. Let’s go!

Still, Pittsburgh hasn’t finished below .500 since 2003, and Cleveland is looking to stay afloat with its running game and defense until Deshaun Watson returns. These are the types of games you have to win. Who will get it done? In his Week 3 picksour NFL expert John Breech says…

  • Breech: “If I’ve noticed one thing about the Steelers this season, it’s that they basically show up every week with no offensive game plan and then make it up as they go along. … At the rate he’s going, Matt Canada might be coaching in Canada by the end of the season. … Through two weeks, the Browns and Steelers have each played two games and all four of those games have been decided by three points or less, so obviously, I will not be predicting a blowout, but I will be predicting an upset. The pick: Steelers 16-13 over Browns.

Over the weekend, one of the top games is another division battle: Bills at Dolphins — who are two of the six remaining undefeated teams. But Pete Prisco says this one won’t be close.

  • Prisco: “This is one of the best games of the week, featuring two 2-0 teams that can score. The Bills are playing on the road on a short week, which is an advantage for Miami. But this Buffalo team is riding high. The Dolphins defense wasn’t good last week. Pick: Bills 30, Dolphins 20

Here are our expert picks:

John Breech | Pete Prisco | Tyler Sullivan

Aaron Judge watch: Two doubles, but no 61st HR ⚾

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With a buzz of anticipation unlike anything in recent memory — and ticket prices soaring to exorbitant amounts Aaron Judge had another great game… but did not homer in the Yankees14-2 blowout win over the Pirates.

Judge finished 2 for 4 with two doubles, a walk and two runs scored. He remains at 60 home runs for the season, one behind tying Roger Maris‘ AL record.

Of course, a game like that won’t hurt Judge’s other chase: He’s leading all three categories of the AL Triple Crown and could be just the second winner in the last 50 years, joining Miguel Cabrera in 2012. Our Dayn Perry explored the impressiveness of Judge’s historic season.

What we’re watching Thursday 📺

Red Sox at Yankees7:15 pm on FOX
🏈 West Virginia at Virginia Tech7:30 pm on ESPN
🏈 Steelers at Browns8:15 pm on Prime Video

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