Hamilton responds to heckler's 'old' comment with scoring barrage

931343.png

Hamilton responds to heckler's 'old' comment with scoring barrage

CLEVELAND Rip Hamilton was content to be a facilitator in Fridays night thrashing of the Cavaliers. But when the Bulls veteran shooting guard heard a heckler disparage him because of his age, he had to respond.
Early in the game, I was just trying to set the table. Luol had it going, Booz had it going and it was just one of those things where youre like, You know what? It might not be my night to go ahead and score, but just to try to get other guys involved, he recounted afterwards. In the third quarter, I just tried to be a little bit more aggressive and guys did a great job of finding me.
And some dude in the crowd called me old. Thats what woke me up, Hamilton continued, to the laughs of the assembled media. He called me Old Man River, some dude behind me. So, I was like, All right, I got something for you.
Instead of engaging with the fan, Hamilton scored 14 of his 19 points in the period, on 7-for-8 shooting from the field. It was a performance that impressed his teammates.
A blind man could have seen that Hamilton was hot. They could just keep hearing his name from the arena PA announcer, Rip Hamilton, Rip Hamilton. He got us going, Nate Robinson said. Thats what we need from each guy. We knew Rip had the hot hand, guys moving, hes still making passes. Guys making easy shots, were getting stops on the defensive end. Thats what got our offense going.
Added Carlos Boozer: Whew! He was on fire. Listen: Rip, I know hes 35 (actually, 34), everyone wants to talk about hes Old Man River and all that. Hes still one of the quickest dudes on the planet, in the league and every time he comes off screens, it doesnt matter where he is, if his feet are set, if his feet arent set, if hes moving in the air, he hits those shots. So, we just kept feeding him. Thats how we are; were going to feed the hot hand. He was on fire in the third. It was great for us, too, because we had a little bit of a lull.
As remarkable as Hamiltons scoring was, Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau was also complimentary of his unselfishness. Hamilton only had two of the Bulls 34 assists, but his passing was a major part of the teams crisp ball movement.
The one thing about Rip is Rip is going to hit the open man also. If hes open coming off the screen, hes going to shoot. But if the second defender is there, hes never going to take a tough shot like that, Thibodeau said. Hes always going to hit the open man and thats the mark of a winning player. A primary scorer has the responsibility of making the right play.

White Sox: No timeframe for Zach Putnam, surgery an option

White Sox: No timeframe for Zach Putnam, surgery an option

Zach Putnam is weighing his options after he had a second opinion on Friday and surgery is one of them.

The White Sox reliever went on the disabled list Tuesday with ulnar neuritis in his right elbow. Putnam, who has a 2.30 ERA in 25 games this season, last pitched on Sunday in Cleveland.

“(Surgery is) possible,” general manager Rick Hahn said. “But again, we are exploring all the options. We want to make sure we have all the possibilities laid out before us. It’s just one of the things we are considering.”

“Still parceling through the options and at this point we don’t have a specific timeframe for him.”

The White Sox bullpen already is short-handed after losing Jake Petricka to potentially season-ending hip surgery earlier this month. Daniel Webb is out for the season after he had reconstructive elbow surgery earlier this month.

The White Sox bullpen currently features three rookies as result of those injuries and manager Robin Ventura doesn’t see any way of avoiding using them in key spots. Michael Ynoa and Chris Beck both got in and out of trouble and earned holds in Boston.

“We’re gonna have to find a way to get nine innings in and they’re gonna get tested,” Ventura said. “I thought Michael did a nice job the other day. I think even Beck after the first hitter, it could have been a mess. I thought he really showed what he’s made of by coming back. He gave up the sac fly and that was it.”

Blackhawks deal Andrew Shaw to Montreal for two draft picks

Blackhawks deal Andrew Shaw to Montreal for two draft picks

BUFFALO, N.Y. – Andrew Shaw had to wait until his third go-around in the NHL Draft before he was selected by the Blackhawks. Two Stanley Cups later, he became a big part of this group.

Like several before him, he said he wanted to stay here. Like several before him, it didn’t happen.

Shaw was traded to the Montreal Canadiens for two second-round selections, as the NHL Draft began on Friday. The forward was going to become a restricted free agent next Friday. And while both sides said they hoped to find a deal to keep Shaw in Chicago, the deal didn’t come.

The Blackhawks get two second-round picks, the 39th and 45th overall selections, in this draft. That now gives them 10 selections in this draft.

Coach Joel Quenneville talked of Shaw’s importance to the team prior to the draft’s start on Friday. His grittiness made him a fan favorite, and Shaw was someone the Blackhawks could always rely on to be that net-front presence.

“He’s one of those players that you appreciate and he’s so versatile and the intangibles jump off the page when we’re talking about him,” Quenneville said. “It’s a situation where players are in some situations where contracts need to be signed and his importance, contributions we’ve seen over the years has been pretty amazing for us.”

Whether it came down to a big money gap between the two parties, as it did with the Blackhawks and Brandon Saad last year, or something else isn’t known yet. Stan Bowman will likely talk following the first round’s conclusion.

Shaw talked in April of how much he wanted to stay here. At the time, it seemed unlikely, considering the Blackhawks’ cap issues. But after Bryan Bickell and Teuvo Teravainen were traded more than a week ago, freeing up more than $4 million in cap space, it seemed more likely Shaw would stay. But he won’t.

Jose Abreu out of White Sox lineup with sore leg

Jose Abreu out of White Sox lineup with sore leg

The White Sox held Jose Abreu out of the lineup on Friday and they’re hopeful it will be enough time for his sore leg to heal.

Manager Robin Ventura said Abreu -- who has a .997 OPS in June with five home runs and 20 RBIs in 89 plate appearances -- has experienced tightness in the back of his right leg, “but his left leg is the one that’s really sore,” he said. While Abreu could be used as a pinch hitter, Ventura said the absence is mandatory.

“He definitely needs (a day off) today -- he needs to be able to stay off it and not even DH,” Ventura said. “He’s a big guy. That’s part of the some of the stuff we’ve done the last couple of years is to get him a day here and there and in this one, he just needs it. He’s been on base quite a bit and as sore as his leg feels, it also looks not too good, either.”

Abreu agrees with Ventura’s call as he sees it geared toward the big picture. The first baseman could be seen limping some during Thursday’s contest, one day after he was hit in the leg by a pitch.

“Sometimes your legs are getting tired and your hamstring is getting tight and you need a break,” Abreu said through an interpreter. “Today is a break for me. I came early, I did all my treatments. So far, so good for now. But, yes, I needed this day off.

“You always want to play, but sometimes you also have to realize that the best thing you can do is just to take a break thinking of the future.”

Todd Frazier started at first base for the White Sox and Tyler Saladino was at third with Abreu out of the lineup for only the second time all season.