Teague takes small step in win over hometown team

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Teague takes small step in win over hometown team

SOUTH BEND, IND. Back in his home state for the first time as a professional, Bulls rookie point guard Marquis Teague felt the pressure to perform.

With starter Kirk Hinrich sidelined, Nate Robinson filled in, meaning that Teague was the second-stringer for the evening.

In the second quarter, the Indianapolis native got his chance and while the numbers werent spectacular 0-for-1 shooting, a turnover and an assist apiece he looked remarkably improved from his previous exhibition outings.

Before the contest, the Bulls coaching staff was privately encouraged by Teagues development in practice and although he hadnt previously had a chance to play extended minutes, head coach Tom Thibodeau was an ardent defender of the first-round picks progress and afterwards, he voiced his satisfaction.

I thought Marquis played very well. In the second quarter, he was aggressive. I thought he got fouled on a full-court drive to the rim, didnt get the call, still stayed aggressive, so thats a good sign, Thibodeau said. I thought defensively, it was much better and thats all I want him to concentrate on, is his improvement. Learn, improve, come in the next day, improve some more.

As for Teague himself, the University of Kentucky product was quietly confident about how he made out.

I felt pretty good. I just want to play aggressive, run the offense and play good defense, he told CSNChicago.com. They just told me when I see the gaps, take them, be aggressive, so when they told me to be aggressive, it made me a lot more comfortable. Im just trying to play my game.

It didnt hurt that he had several well-wishers in attendance.

Oh yeah, always. When I come home, my familys here, everybody, friends, so I want to play better, Teague, who said he didnt grow up a Pacers fan, but acknowledged being a supporter of the NFLs Colts, admitted. I had a lot of people. Every time I play in Indianapolis or Indiana, Im going to have a lot of friends and family here.

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Bulls welcome Cavaliers to town

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SportsTalk Live Podcast: Bulls welcome Cavaliers to town

In the latest installment of the SportsTalk Live Podcast, the panel previews the Bulls' matchup against the Cavaliers. 

Luke Stuckmeyer is joined by Mark Carman (WGN Radio), David Schuster (670 The Score) and Kendall Gill to break down the keys to a Bulls win. Later, Vincent Goodwill (CSNChicago.com) joins Luke to discuss the team's progress. 

Finally, LeBron James pays off his World Series bet and the entire media world is there to see it. 

Check out the SportsTalk Live Podcast below: 

White Sox agree to one-year deals with Brett Lawrie, Avisail Garcia

White Sox agree to one-year deals with Brett Lawrie, Avisail Garcia

Brett Lawrie and Avisail Garcia will both return to the White Sox in 2017.

The team announced it reached deals with both players shortly before Friday’s 7 p.m. CST nontender deadline. Lawrie will earn $3.5 million next season and Garcia received a one-year deal for $3 million.

The club didn’t tender a contract to right-handed pitcher Blake Smith, which leaves its 40-man roster at 38.

Acquired last December for a pair of minor leaguers, Lawrie hit .248/.310/.413 with 12 home runs, 22 doubles and 36 RBIs in 94 games before he suffered a season-ending injury.

Lawrie produced 0.9 f-WAR when he suffered what then-manager Robin Ventura described a “tricky” injury on July 21. Despite numerous tests and a lengthy rehab, Lawrie never returned to the field and was frustrated by the experience. Last month, Lawrie tweeted that he believes the cause of his injury was wearing orthotics for the first time in his career.

He was projected to earn $5.1 million, according to MLBTraderumors.com and earned $4.125 million in 2016.

Garcia hit .245/.307/.385 with 12 homers and 51 RBIs in 453 plate appearances over 120 games. The projected salary for Garcia, arb-eligible for the first time, was $3.4 million.

The team also offered contracts to Miguel Gonzalez and Todd Frazier, who are eligible for free agency in 2018, first baseman Jose Abreu and relievers Dan Jennings, Zach Putnam and Jake Petricka, among others.

The White Sox have until mid-January to reach an agreement with their arbitration-eligible players. If they haven’t, both sides submit figures for arbitration cases, which are then heard throughout February.