Clips Take Caps Lock Out On Isiah Thomas Report

UPDATE (5:15p ET): Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLosAngeles.com reports that the Clippers are denying they are considering Isiah Thomas for a position with the club.

Clippers deny interest in Isiah Thomas

Shelburne adds: “This feels like story came from Isiah… Can’t see why the Clippers would want to pay $10 mill worth of coach next year.”

ORIGINAL POST: Jeff Goodman of FoxSports.com reports Friday:

Isiah Thomas Mike Dunleavy Donald Sterling

NBA Hall of Famer and current men’s basketball coach at Florida International University Isiah Thomas has emerged as one of the candidates to run the Los Angeles Clippers.

According to a source close to the situation, the Clippers have reached out to Thomas — who coached the Indiana Pacers and also the New York Knicks — to take over coaching, general manager and president duties.

He would replace Mike Dunleavy, who was relieved of his coaching duties earlier this week but remains the general manager.

Goodman’s report is all the more delightful when you consider that 11 months ago, Dunleavy said on the record that he turned down Thomas’ offer to work for the Clippers for free - in any capacity!

Lisa Dillman of the L.A. TIMES:

Thomas is doing what he can to try to get back into the game, and with his daughter set to attend Loyola Marymount, he offered to work for the Clippers without getting paid because he is still receiving money from the Knicks, Dunleavy said.

“Isiah came to us,” Dunleavy said in a telephone interview Thursday morning. “I wasn’t going to be a jerk and say, ‘I can’t talk to you.’ But there’s no position in the organization for him.”

While Dunleavy may sound like he’s somewhat sympathetic to Thomas, to reveal that Thomas was willing to work for free was clearly a low blow.

Then there’s January, 2008, when Dunleavy slammed Thomas for running the Knicks into the ground.

Read more…

‘Bizarre’ Isiah ‘Shouts’ At Tulsa Coach During Loss

Jeff Latzke of the ASSOCIATED PRESS reports on behavior from Isiah Thomas during FIU’s 81-49 loss at Tulsa today that was characterized by Golden Hurricane coach Doug Wojcik as “bizarre.”

Isiah Thomas Yelled At Tulsa Coach During Blowout

Midway through the second half of Florida International’s 81-49 loss at Tulsa on Sunday, Thomas motioned toward his counterpart as if to ask when he’d take his starters out. A few minutes later, he got vocal with his request, shouting a few words in the direction of Golden Hurricane coach Doug Wojcik. At that point, FIU (0-3) was down 63-25 with 8:59 to play after being outscored 27-5 to start the second half.

Wojcik was surprised and perplexed at Thomas’ inappropriate actions, to say the least. Read more…

Isiah Savaged By Fans In Second College Game

I’m pleased to report that though UNC’s fans rolled over for Isiah Thomas in his coaching debut for FIU at Chapel Hill, Howard Beck of the NEW YORK TIMES notes that Monmouth University students did no such thing last night.

Isiah Thomas abused by Monmouth Fans

(Isiah: Vicious, off-color taunts were in “good fun”?!) 

There were chants about Thomas’s sleeping-pill overdose last year, his 2007 sexual harassment trial and his newly exposed rift with Magic Johnson (“Magic hates you!”)

Beck also notes that, “as Thomas left the court, an older fan accosted him and shouted profanities, then was taken away by security.”

Matt Gagne of the NEW YORK DAILY NEWS reports of the fan,

“Through it all, Thomas kept his cool, even as he came off the court following the final buzzer and an adult fan accosted him, repeatedly saying “—- you” nearly a dozen times, according to one eyewitness.

And Gagne with more from the students:

As he walked across the court at the end of halftime, the student body pointed at Thomas in unison and made a one-word chant out of a seven-letter profanity.

In his NYT piece, Beck doesn’t get specific with most of the fan chants, but thanks to the wonderment of Twitter, the reporter did bless us with what was being said about the man who once threw his daughter under the bus to the New York media. Read more…

Isiah Thomas Will Not Accept Tar Heels’ Tyranny

Believe it or not, basketball season’s coming soon. Just three months from now, we’ll be positively mired in the thick of the sports season, with weekends dominated by football and weekdays devoted to NCAA hoops and the NBA. It will be wonderful - especially if people stop screwing with Isiah Thomas.

Isiah Thomas
(He was so happy, you guys, and you’re just ruining it!)

The embattled Knicks head man-turned-FIU coach was set to begin his Golden Panther career against Ohio State, which makes sense; we’d long suspected that FIU was content to just be a pawn in Thomas’ reversion to his collegiate rivalries, after all. But UNC decided they’d rather have the date instead, and apparently that was enough for FIU to completely lose their s**t. Seriously.

Read more…

Miami Caliente Holds Hot Lingerie Football Tryouts

• Tryouts were held for the Lingerie Football League’s Miami Caliente, and some of the resulting scenes were, dare I say, en fuego:

Miami Caliente lingerie football

Mark Cuban uses his blog to apologize to Kenyon Martin’s mom. But if you think the Mavs-Nuggets rivalry has cooled off, just ask LaLa Vasquez.

• The Dodgers know what women want - their own online radio broadcast!

• The Blackhawks scalp the Canucks, while the Caps force a Game 7.

• A slimmer Jessica Simpson sings at Sea World, much to PETA’s chargin.

Read more…

Isiah Really Tried to Make It All Work In New York

Isiah Thomas showed up on Dan Patrick’s radio show today to try to set a few things straight. (By the way, plenty of tickets are still available to see the Florida International Golden Panthers in action this fall!)

Isiah Thomas head down

During his chat, the ex-Knicks coach & prez wanted fans in New York to know that he did everything he could to try and succeed in Madison Square Garden. And before you gothrowing more stones in his direction, Isiah would like to point out that he’s not the only one who couldn’t make it at MSG:

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Isiah Confirms OD, Won’t Deny Suicide Attempt

You probably know that Isiah Thomas has been hired as the head basketball coach at Florida International, a Sun Belt school that has made the NCAA Tournament just once and hasn’t had a winning season since 2000. Well, today Thomas was introduced officially as coach, and while he made a nice gesture by pledging to donate his salary back to the school (although he’s still got $12 million coming to him from the Knicks), any goodwill he garnered during the day was derailed by a bizarre interview on SportsCenter earlier this afternoon.

Isiah Thomas

Chris McKendry was charged with interviewing Thomas, and she wasn’t interested in skirting any issues. She asked Isiah directly about his sexual harassment allegations, and then grilled him about his rumored suicide attempt a few months ago at his home in New York. Isiah’s answers were awkward to say the least, and honestly kind of strange and disturbing. He had several opportunities to deny attempting suicide (McKendry outright asked him), but he never did.

Video of the interview after the jump.

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Speed Read: Another Violent Day in LA’s Paradise

The baseball day in Los Angeles started on a solemn note Monday when the Dodgers held two moments of silence for fallen comrades in arms during Chavez Ravine’s opening day Monday (before a third passed later in the day).

Dodger Stadium tributes to Nick Adenhart and Harry Kalas

(Pictures from 710 AM ESPN’s Beto Duran)

By the end of the game (an 11-1 pounderation of the San Francisco Giants, who could not devise a hacky time travel solution with the USS Enterprise despite the cross-promotional gold), the area around Dodger Stadium hosted numerous instances of disrespect to human life through stabbings, gun-waving, fights involving dozens of people, and the stray auto accident.

Of course, we would never draw a correlation between the drop in beer prices at Dodger Stadium and violence around the ballpark. After all, fan-on-fan violence is still seemingly less likely than vendor-on-vendor violence or security-on-fan violence. The relative safety of MLB.com’s At Bat iPhone app is looking better all the time, especially now that it works occasionally.

Another object d’mocktastery best safely seen from a distance that works only occasionally: Isiah Thomas. He’s apparently found a reason to leave the house as Florida International University has shown interest in hiring him as their basketball head coach.

Isiah Thomas suit

(”Look! Look up at that paragraph! It says that someone wants me!  Do you see that?”)

FIU has found a certain comfort level with losing (five straight seasons) and could certainly use the limelight brought by a famous coach. Perhaps Isiah’s excited because he thinks he can ply his trade in a different country unfamiliar with his sordid past. (That’s what the “International” stands for, right?)

Another gentleman of leisure being paid by an NBA team to go away but still looking for a new home will also have to find a new place of leisure as well. At least two of Detroit’s casinos (current count: 439280410) have reportedly tossed Allen Iverson out on his ear for “boorish behavior”, including bodyguard-related scuffling, pouting after a loss, and being generally churlish.

Allen Iverson golfs

(There’s always golf to ruin one’s forced retirement)

So kudos to the MGM Casino and the Greektown Casino for standing up to Allen Iverson’s shenanigans after he’s left town and will likely never return unless absolutely forced to by contract. Also, way to leak the information once the coast is clear.

We once spotted AI in the Omni Hotel in Atlanta, taking over a section of  the open-air lounge and bar to play cards in the late afternoon with his buddies. He did not order from the bar; instead, he had the bellboy bring his crew a beat-up old cooler filled with their own special reserve.

We did not get a chance to see his favorite drink, but we bet he could get it for 25% less this season at Dodger Stadium. Better bring the bodyguards to carry the overflow.

And now our riot police-approved hail of rubber bullets reinforced by the near-certainty there are relatively few industries interested in “boy whisperers”

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Shawn Johnson Stalker Caught at ‘Dancing’ Studio

• Some overly-obsessed 34-year-old tried to abduct Olympic gymnast Shawn Johnson during a “Dancing With The Stars” taping.

Shawn Johnson Olympic leap

• A girls’ HS basketball team roughs up a roster of Dallas radio guys.

• Apocalypse now? Isiah Thomas could be put in charge of the Clippers.

• White Sox closer Bobby Jenks doesn’t read, but really likes his rear.

• This giveaway’s a gas: Minor league team plans to hand out fart filters.

Read more…

Speed Read: Unholy Isiah Thomas/Clippers Union

I’ll be blunt: End Times may be upon us. Sources have told ESPN.COM that the Clippers have had discussions with Isiah Thomas about bringing him into their front office. While the two sides have apparently only had “informal yet substantive” conversations, the thought of arguably the worst executive in NBA history joining forces with perhaps the most sad-sack franchise in all of pro sports should be enough to make anyone tremble in fear.

Isiah Thomas, Clippers and the Rapture

(A sign of things to come?)

One source within the Clippers organization (in between bouts of crying and failed suicide attempts, I’m sure) said that the discussion of bringing Thomas or Randy Pfund into the front office to “help” Mike Dunleavy is just “a smoke screen to defray the criticism of the franchise” about the lawsuit filed by former GM Elgin Baylor. I don’t know if that’s true or not; what I do know is that even throwing the idea of Thomas and the Clippers linking up is tempting fate.

Mike Dunleavy

(Why is this man smiling? Seriously, help me here - I have no idea.)

Because make no mistake, this is bad news on an apocalyptic scale - the Staples Center area might be turned into a giant vortex of suckage that it would collapse into itself, taking the majority of downtown LA with it. Those little yippy dogs that celebs like Paris Hilton carry in their purses would turn into blood-thirsty savages. Hollywood Boulevard might become a river of molten lava, carrying away the homeless and Japanese tourists there to see “Grease” starring Taylor Hicks to a fiery death.

I’m sure as hell leaving at once if this happens, and I’m bringing enough cyanide pills for the family in case we don’t get out in time. Perhaps I’m being a bit too panicky, but you have to plan for these things: I just have a feeling that more than the Clippers’ salary cap is going to explode if Isiah Thomas joins the Clippers.

Also making plans: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, who is significantly more together than either Thomas or the Clippers. His latest plan, according to USA TODAY: expanding the regular season to 17 or 18 games, and eliminating one or two preseason games in the process. Imagine that…actually trying to give fans more meaningful games and eliminate season-ticket holders having to pay for lousy games featuring star players for one series and then a bunch of scrubs for the remainder of the game.

Of course, the union hasn’t approved the plan yet, and they are sure to not be pleased about their players having to play two more competitive games a season. (And if there’s an 18-game season, you can pretty much wipe out things like a 1,000-yard season as being any sort of benchmark for success.) And is certainly interesting that the league would consider putting the players through more wear and tear a day after announcing new rules to “protect” them.

Of course, Goodell has other things on his mind, like the fact that he might need to rule on Michael Vick’s status sooner rather than later. Vick left a federal prison yesterday for a bankruptcy hearing in Virginia, but the day was hardly successful. The AP reports that U.S. Department of Labor has filed complaints accusing Vick of illegally spending about $1.3 million in pension funds from one of his companies for personal reasons, including paying restitution in his dog fighting case.

This should close any debate about who the stupidest person in America is. I wonder if the Clippers have room on their staff for him?

Some other sports news from last night that you might have missed if you were in Brussels waiting in line to use the restroom…and waiting…and waiting…

  • Our economy might be going down a drain, but that doesn’t mean we as Americans are too broke to engage in the American Dream: going to a baseball game and eating a hamburger the size of a kitten. The GRAND RAPIDS PRESS reports that the West Michigan Whitecaps will be debuting The Fifth Third Burger, a 4,800-calorie, four-pound behemoth that includes a one-pound bun, five patties and five slices of cheese. And a cup of chili for good measure.
  • The Fifth Third Burger

  • BALL DON’T LIE salutes Wizards forward Dominic McGuire, who scored on a dunk last night to break a streak of 116 minutes played without a point.
  • Los Angeles TV and radio personality John Ireland made a hasty bet with James Worthy: if his UCLA Bruins didn’t advance as far as Worthy’s North Carolina Tar Heels in the NCAA Tournament, Ireland would sing the UNC fight song on TV. Bad idea, after the Bruins tanked against Villanova. Here are the unfortunate results - it’s like the drunk guy at karaoke who gets pressured into singing by his friends and spends his whole time on stage planning ways to kill them.
  • YAHOO! SPORTS takes promoter Bob Arum to task for encouraging American fans to attend a fight card in Tijuana this weekend, despite the U.S. government’s warning on travel. Something about armed drug violence turning into a civil war. Bob, I think I’ll catch it on TV instead.
  • Scary stuff for Olympic gymnastic hero Shawn Johnson: NEWSDAY reports that a nutjob armed with two guns and duct tape tried to break into the set of “Dancing with the Stars” and “get to” Johnson and her dancing partner. To be fair, if she wasn’t interested in him, she shouldn’t have been sending subliminal messages to him through the TV and through ESP. Women.
  • Of all the things I would think to impersonate in a scam, a youth soccer referee wouldn’t be one of them. But DIRTY TACKLE says that’s just what some fake ref did in Northern Ireland, convincing three teams to give him a “match fee” before games he never reffed.
  • Apparently the NHL doesn’t like it when a goaltender pushes a referee and then shoots a puck at him: the TORONTO GLOBE AND MAIL says that Martin Gerber of the Toronto Maple Leafs has been suspended three games after going nuts Tuesday against the Washington Captials.
  • The Boston Celtics death spiral continues as the BOSTON GLOBE reports the Magic beat them 84-82 to edge closer to the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference. Is it too late to give last year’s MVP to Kevin Garnett since we know now just how much he means to this team?
  • I think it’s fair to say that the Dallas police officer who stopped Houston Texans RB Ryan Moats from being at his dying mother-in-law’s bedside - at the hospital parking lot, over a red light - should not just be suspended or fired, but drawn and quartered. SPORTS RUBBISH has the awful, infuriating details.
  • For some players, spring training is a chance to get in shape; for others, it’s a chance to hit the free buffet in the locker room every day. THE LOVE OF SPORTS looks at the Top 10 Overweight Baseball Players. Maybe they’ll win a free Fifth Third Burger for making it on the list?

Who was the worst former player turned sports executive?

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