Anna Kournikova Shows Her Stuff As K-Swiss Miss

It’s a common complaint that ex-tennis star Anna Kournikova has relied too much on her looks to find success in the sports world without any actual success in her own sport. I, for one, don’t really have a problem with this.

Anna Kournikova KSwiss

And BIG LEAGUE SCREW reaffirs my indifference to such complaints by serving up some fab photos of Anna K. hotstepping at a K-Swiss event held in NYC this week. And viewing such a photographic sampling as shown below after the jump really sets my sole on fire:

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Speed Read: “Desperate” Plax Faces Grand Jury

As we speak, Plaxico Burress is preparing to testify before a grand jury in Manhattan about shooting himself in the leg last year. And those of you with some familiarity with the legal system might have this reaction to that news: uhhh, wha?

Plaxico Burress

(”I saved the world from having to deal with 19-0. Doesn’t that count for something?”)

In a move that ESPN’s Lester Munson is calling “desperate” and “highly unusual,” Burress will subject himself to questioning in an effort to get the grand jury to consider lesser charges than the felony that is currently on the table. It’s rare for a lawyer to allow this to happen because it can backfire in so many ways. For one, Plax has to be very careful about what he says. If any statement he makes ends up not being true, he could find a perjury charge added to whatever else he’s facing. And, since the prosecutors can ask anything they want, if Burress is forthcoming with every detail, he could basically end up admitting his guilt. Although, as one ESPN commenter noted, Burress really only needs to be asked three questions:

1. Did you have a gun in your possession when you shot yourself?
2. Do you have a permit to have that gun?
3. Do you have a permit to carry a concealed weapon in New York?

If the answer is “yes” to #1 and “no” to the other two questions, that’s basically all they need to make their decision.

Lester Munson

(Things aren’t going well if this guy’s talking about you)

So why do it? Munson and fellow analyst Roger Cossack seem to think that Burress’ lawer, Benjamin Brafman, might be using this as a means to encourage a plea bargain. But Munson says that they don’t have any leverage here, since they’re the ones facing all the downside related to Burress’ testimony. The term “bluff” is being thrown around, but what’s the bluff? Why would the D.A. be worried about Plax testifying?

The only reasonable theory being offered is that maybe Plax can charm the jurors into thinking he’s a good guy who didn’t know the law and just wanted to protect himself. But he’ll have to do all of this without his lawyer, who won’t be allowed into the courtroom.

On Monday, Manhattan D.A. Jack McCoy Robert Morgenthau spoke publicly about the case, saying that Plax was OK with doing a year in jail, but that the people won’t accept a deal that involves less than two years in the clink. Morgenthau even suggested that he’s looking at charging Antonio Pierce for his role in the incident, something Cossack claims was “out of bounds” for the D.A. to talk about publicly, and certainly meant to bait Burress into a deal.

None of this looks particularly good, and one wonders if that two-year deal from the D.A. is still on the table. And I think it’s safe to say it would be the worst two-year deal any NFL free agent would be signing this year.

Robert Morgenthau

(When the guy with the huge ears says you’re doing time, you’re doing time)

Mark Buehrle made his first start since his perfect game, and for an hour and a half or so at the Metrodome, the awesome gift-giver looked like he might have a legitimate shot at the utterly unthinkable. Buehrle retired the first 17 Twins he faced on Tuesday night, before it finally all fell apart and he gave up five runs and five hits.

Despite the eventual unraveling, Buehrle set a major league record by sending down 45 consecutive batters. That’s 15 consecutive innings without allowing a baserunner. The previous record was 41, held by two players, including Buehrle’s teammate, Bobby Jenks (who did it in three-batter increments as a closer).

Mark Buehrle White Sox

Elsewhere around baseball, Ichiro did something he’d never done before — end a game with a hit. That’s right, none of his previous 1,952 hits were of the walk-off variety, by far the longest such active streak in baseball. To give you an idea, Alex Cora now holds the active record for most hits without a walk-off at 742.

Ichiro Suzuki Seattle Mariners

(”You know, maybe if you didn’t have Yuniesky Betancourt hitting in front of me for four years I would’ve done it once or twice.”)

It’s been a good year for the Dodgers, but things took a turn for the embarrassing when Mark Loretta had to come on to pitch with two outs in the eighth inning at L.A. trailing 10-0 to the Cardinals. Loretta was the first position player to pitch in a game for the Dodgers since 2004, and after drilling Matt Holliday with a fastball he got Ryan Ludwick to fly out to end the inning. In other words, he did way better than Chien-Ming Wang had done this year. The Yankees finally Old Yellered him and are sending him to have surgery that can’t possibly make him any worse. Wang’s future with the Yanks is in doubt, as the team must offer him at least $4 million to keep him next year or lose him to free agency.

Chien-Ming Wang  cheerleader

Jessica Simpson is no longer welcome in Tony Romo’s neighborhood. She’s taking the high road, though, by not asking Romo to give her back the boat she bought him.

• Maryland football coach Ralph Friedgen isn’t anywhere near the man he used to be. He’s much less. 95 pounds worth, to be exact.

• Because everyone’s been asking for it, here are those long-awaited highlights of the touch football game played by NFL legends before Super Bowl X in 1976. If you’ve ever wanted to see Paul Hornung make a gay joke, watch a bunch of guys try and cop a feel on Phyllis George, and hear why Johnny Unitas likes to drive Pontiacs, look no further:

As you can see, Bill Murray and Christopher Guest had nowhere to go but up.

• OK, Jason Marquis has been pretty good this year, but the DENVER POST’s Mark Kiszla has to settle down. Kiszla says that because Marquis has been on a heater for 19 starts this year that he deserves a long-term contract from the Rockies. Because those other nine years Marquis pitched must have been some kind of aberration.

• BASKETBAWFUL wonders why it’s so hard to keep score of a pickup basketball game, despite using the theoretically easier 1-point/2-point scoring system.

• DEADSPIN has the strangest overreaction to the whole Erin Andrews mess that has been published so far.

• Yes, this is in fact Garth Brooks tossing a coin into his own face before an international soccer match (TMZ is covering something other than Michael Jackson these days):

Garth Brooks tossing coin into own face

Homeless man starts passing notes to Mario Lemieux and Sidney Crosby. Penguins win Stanley Cup. Coincidence?

• The Cowboys will play at the Chiefs on October 11th in Kansas City, and the home team will be wearing a helmet with a big picture of Texas on it.

Vin Scully has announced that next season — his 61st as broadcaster for the Dodgers — will be his last.

• And just because we can, here’s some pictures of Anna Kournikova and Martina Hingis getting ready to kiss each other:

Anna Kournikova and Martina Hingis

Anna Kournikova and Martina Hingis

Holy Tramp Stamp! SI Airbrushed Anna K. Too?!

While sifting through some recent photos of Anna Kournikova at a charity event yesterday, I happened upon this photo:

Anna Kournikova Tramp Stamp

Kournikova over the past decade is one of the most photographed women in the world, but I don’t recall ever seeing that monster tramp stamp. Turns out I was a little late to the party - her body art has been all over the web for some time now.

Anna Kournikova Tramp Stamp

Remembering that Kournikova posed for SPORTS ILLUSTRATED Swimsuit Issue in 2004, I went back to see if her ink had been Danica’d. (SI infamously airbrushed out Danica Patrick’s tramp stamp in some of her SI Swimsuit Issue photos.)

And thankfully, the 60-somethings running the show at SI didn’t let us down. Read more…

Does Anna Kournikova Have To Choke A B****?

Of all the laws governing space, time & physics, one of the most important is that you never pick a fight with Anna Kournikova. Unless you’re an attractive girl, and I can watch. Many roughed her up on the tennis court, but on Monday night Anna proved that, while trying to relax at a club in Vegas, she is not to be trifled with.

Anna Kournikova

Kournikova, in town attending the Harbat Classic Table Tennis Tournament, was with friends at the LAVO Nightclub in Las Vegas when she got into an altercation with another woman. The woman reportedly threw a drink in Kournikova’s face after a verbal altercation, and then a catfight ensued. And all of this for only a $5 cover!

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Week In Review: Laker Fans’ Celebration is a Riot

• The Lakers win the NBA title, and many Angelenos celebrate accordingly - if “Angeleno” is Spanish for “a$$hole“.

Lakers fan riot

• Baseball phenom Bryce Harper don’t need no education, plans to skip final two years of high school to become eligible for next year’s MLB draft.

• Posing for a new photoshoot, Anna Kournikova shows she’s still A-OK.

• “Joe Buck Live” makes its long-awaited(?) debut, and Artie Lange insures that it’s a memorable one.

• The mom of porn star Catalina Cruz used to work as a secretary for former Cleveland Browns coach Sam Rutigliano.

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Lakers Win! Let The Looting & Jackassery Begin!

• The Lakers fans’ celebration in downtown L.A. was a riot. No, seriously.

Hotties at Lakers fans postgame riot at Staples Center

(These Lucky Strike lasses are wanted for questioning. They didn’t do anything wrong - we’re just looking for an excuse to talk to them.)

• Among those witnessing Kobe’s non-Shaq title triumph was Chris Brown & Rihanna - along with a fake Rihanna.

• With his 10th NBA title ring, Phil Jackson should finally call it a career - at least according to Charles Barkley.

• Now that the NBA & NHL seasons are finally over, we can turn our attention to the titles that really matter: the World Air Sex Championships.

• In a recent photoshoot, Anna Kournikova shows she’s still A-OK.

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Kournikova Shows She’s Still In Style For InStyle

Since this year’s French Open women’s singles title was a bit lacking in sex appeal - sorry, Svetlana Kuznetsova & Dinara Safina, but that’s just the way it is - we’d like to bring a little sexy back to tennis. And when in doubt, you can always rely on that ol’ standby - Anna Kournikova.

Anna Kournikova

Yes, we all know that her time on the court could have been a bit more successful, but her off-court modeling career has gone so much better. The latest prime example comes from InStyle magazine, who did a recent shoot with the former tennis star. And based on the results, Anna is still A-OK:

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17-Year-Old Simona Halep Is A Shot, Jaw-Dropper

How many times have you heard someone claiming they’ve discovered women’s tennis’ “the next Anna Kournikova!” Only to be underwhelmed by yet another teen prodigy who doesn’t have the goods. Well I think may have hit on something with Romanian 17-year-old tennis hottie Simona Halep:

Simona Halep Monster Tennis Boobs

(Now THAT’S what you call an overhead smash*rubs eyes*)

Current Junior French Open Champion Halep, like Kournikova once was, should soon be competitive enough to make the late rounds of TV tournaments. If she does continue to raise her game, she might be able to parlay her body (of work) into endorsement gold.

Simona Halep Monster Tennis Boobs

Or at the very least really raise the interest of fans. More pics and video after the jump. Read more…

Speed Read: What’s Going On With A-Rod’s Hip?

So, here’s what we know: Alex Rodriguez is hurt. Beyond that, we know nothing. From what I hear, he could be out for anywhere from an hour to seven years. What’s really going on is so elusive that A-Rod’s brother was being used as the definitive source on his injury for the first half of Thursday. One SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE writer is saying that the “mystery” surrounding the injury is reminiscent of Barry Bonds‘ knee troubles in 2005.

Alex Rodriguez

Now, instead of surgery that would keep him out for 10 weeks (which was the brother’s story), Brian Cashman is saying that the Yankees are planning on taking a “conservative approach” to the injury, which involves a bunch of rest and rehab with the hopes that surgery won’t be necessary. But how long do you go with that? Cashman admitted that the surgery would probably keep A-Rod out for four months. But if they try this rehab thing for another few weeks, then are stuck with the surgery, suddenly he’s looking at no earlier than mid-to-late August for a return. But, as we all know, if A-Rod’s going to miss four months, it’s much better for all involved that it’s the last four.

NEWSDAY even says that the surgery A-Rod would likely undergo isn’t guaranteed to work:

Dr. Louis Romeo, director of the Joint Replacement Center at Stony Brook University Medical Center, said the surgery to treat an ailment of A-Rod’s type - probably a procedure called a hip arthroscopy - is not the most predictable procedure.

“It’s controversial because the results are not as predictable as you’d like them to be,” said Romeo, who is not involved in the Yankees third baseman’s treatment. “A knee replacement or a hip replacement, you can give someone a 90 percent success rate. Hip arthroscopy, depending on the underlying pathology, may not have as high a success rate.”

A-Rod guitar

(Yeah, I suppose you could go the Bernie Williams route, Alex)

The NCAA tournament bubble is much larger than usual (I mean, Northwestern is now in play, for crap’s sake), which makes every night crucial in college hoops. Last night, Providence took a hit by losing big at Villanova, and Arizona took a big step backward by losing to California at home (the Bears, meanwhile, probably have moved to “lock” status). Tennessee also solidified a likely bid by locking up the SEC East at South Carolina, which suddenly looks vulnerable.

Bruce Pearl Hotties

(I’m taking advantage of any excuse to run these pictures of Bruce Pearl)

Sean Avery made his return to ice last night in the Rangers’ win over the Islanders. Fortunately, Mike Comrie was recently traded away from the Islanders so Avery didn’t have a chance to get it any Hilary Duff-related blasts. Avery was actually well-behaved, and it seems as if he may be content to fly under the radar for the rest of the year. Mostly, Avery’s just glad to be back in New York so he can go to the Project Runway finale.

Sean Avery

Ichiro is apparently depressed about the 0-for-16 slump he’s in right now, and uttered this classic line in a REUTERS story about it:

“It’s depressing,” Suzuki told Japanese media on Friday. “After the game I got picked for a doping test — things are going from bad to worse.”

• Now that A-Rod may be out for a while, the Yankees need to find someone to play third base in the interim. Cody Ransom? Angel Berroa? The NEW YORK POST thinks the team might want to consider some outside options. Like Aaron Boone, apparently.

• FANIQ has the pictures from Anna Kournikova’s latest advertising shoot for K-Swiss. Didn’t she used to play a sport? Badminton or something?

Anna Kournikova

• Fuzzy math time! A lawmaker in North Carolina wants to completely ban athletics at schools where more than half of the students score below the 50th percentile on end-of-year tests for two straight years. But, don’t half the students by definition score below the 50th percentile? Isn’t that what “50th percentile” means? And don’t athletes already have minimum standards for playing?

• A dad at the Iowa state 5th-grade girl’s basketball tournament set some sort of record when he got tossed from a game by the ref just 30 seconds into the game, according to the DES MOINES REGISTER. And yes, I have the same question you do: there’s a state tournament for 5th grade girls?

• Remember last year, when Drake was one of the best stories in college basketball and ended up with a 5 seed, but then was heartbroken on a buzzer beater by Western Kentucky? Yeah, they never quite got over that. They lost to Indiana State in the first round of the MVC tournament last night and are likely not headed to the postseason.

• Some good news from COLONIAL HOOPS: It looks like one of the greatest names in the NBA, Pops Mensah-Bonsu, is going to sign with Toronto for the rest of the year. Pops just wrapped up a 10-day contract with the Spurs, after playing for their D-league team most of the year.

• The NBA shot of the night comes from the Nuggets’ J.R. Smith, who nailed a (nearly) half-court shot at the end of the first half against Portland. Unfortunately, it was all a big hoax perpetrated by one of his friends.

• Need more proof that we’re in a recession? The MILWAUKEE JOURNAL-SENTINEL says Miller Park is implementing a $1 menu at their concession stands. You’re only going to get one peanut, but hey, it’s something.

• The University of Alabama has admitted to a number of NCAA violations…regarding the distribution of textbooks. So, athletes get too many textbooks and that’s a problem? Shouldn’t we be thrilled they’re bothering to get any? CBS SPORTSLINE has the horrifying details. Certainly, ‘Bama deserves the death penalty for this.

How much of the regular season is A-Rod going to miss with his hip injury?

View Results

Brog: Live Brog Features Coli Commentary, Cutty

Saturday, I’ll be coming to you on SbB live from inside and outside the L.A. Coliseum, reporting on the USC-Ohio State game, with assistance from our Managing Editor Jason Kaifesh.

USC 27 OSU 10 USC Song Girl Upskirt

(The Autumn wind is a butt pirate)

We’ll take you in and around the Coli with a genuine cutty sark-stained boots-on-the-ground perspective, and also have in-game observos from our seats at the game (Thanks Barry!). And I promise: absolutely, positively no mentions of those wacky(!) ESPN Gameday signs.

I’ll be joined by DEADSPIN’s A.J. Daulerio at the entire affair as well. And be sure and check out Matt Sussman’s account of the game over at Dspin. And yes, with tailgate fare in mind (*seasoned* bacon-wrapped hot dogs all around!), I plan to require Daulerio bring a generous supply o’ Depends to the proceedings.

Tim Tebow Hooters Girl Gainesville

(Timbo’s consolation prize)

The only thing I’ll add to all that’s been said about the game is that after Saturday, Mark Sanchez is your leading candidate for the Heisman Trophy. Sorry Timbo. And Mizzou, you might ask for your $50,000 back.

Prediction: USC 27, Ohio State 10.

Here’s how Elite XC and CBS is promoting the upcoming Kimbo Slice-Ken Shamrock bout:

Elite XC Bodacious Boobs CBS Kimbo Slice Ken Shamrock

A commercial featuring Bodacious Boobs” and a bikini model showering - which of course is what first comes to mind when I think of CBS. At least after my last forced viewing of Big Bang Theory on an American Airlines flight bound for Topeka.

John Maffei of the NORTH COUNTY (CA) TIMES reports today from San Diego that former longtime SoCal talkshow host Lee “Hacksaw” Hamiltonis moving up to Sirius XM Radio starting Monday, when Sirius launches ‘Mad Dog Radio’ on both services.” Hamilton will man the evening shift at Sirius.

Moving up to evening sports talk show shift on Sirius? Table for one, Hacksaw?

No idea how I missed this, but here’s the cover image for the calendar the Redskins are selling on their official website featuring the team’s cheer squad.

Redskins Jerkoff Calendar With Dan Snyder

(This image has not been photoshopped yes it has)

And to think I thought these (implied) NFL nudie calendars weren’t all about jerkoffs. Read more…