Anthony Davis: Pelicans would have contended for title if DeMarcus Cousins not hurt

As New Orleans star Anthony Davis prepares for the second half of the season with the Pelicans holding on to the eighth seed in the Western Conference, he still thinks about what could have been this year had teammate DeMarcus Cousins not ruptured his Achilles.

“You kind of have that Russell Westbrook mentality when [Kevin Durant] went out,” Davis said. “Russ just went out there and played, and he shot 40 shots sometimes, you know, whatever it takes to help your team win, and I’m kind of taking that approach.

“I think it’s 3 through 10 is all right there [in the West], so we want to make sure we’re in the mix. We can’t let this thing go away.”

Davis said the Pelicans have been playing for one another — “playing with a lot more energy, a sense of urgency” — but that simply making the playoffs isn’t good enough.

“I’ve done that before, and nobody talks about it. Nobody talks about it at all,” he said. “I feel like we can do more. We have to. You know, they all say basketball is a game of runs. This might be our run. You know, you don’t know, and you just got to play it out and see where it goes from there.”

Editor’s update: Super Bowl 52 blew past the over/under with relative ease. The point total was set between 48 and 48.5 points, depending on your sportsbook of choice. This game went past the number late in the third quarter on a Tom Brady touchdown pass to Chris Hogan. With the score, the Patriots cut the Eagles lead to 29-26.

Neither defense has really shown a whole lot of much in this game. The Eagles have led since kicking a field goal on their opening drive. They have pushed the lead to double digits three different times, but the Patriots keep clawing back as Brady is on pace to surpass his own record for passing yards.

The New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles will collide on Sunday for the NFL’s richest prize: a Super Bowl crown. Super Bowl 52 will take place in Minnesota, and many analysts and fans believe the Patriots will walk away with their sixth Super Bowl victory.

Odd Shark’s predicts New England will win the game, 29.3–16.9. They also favored the Patriots by 4.5 points. The best over for Super Bowl 52 is 48 (-105), and the best under is 48.5 (-105).jays_596_d34162f049e5e40e-180x180

NFL Honors 2018 live stream: How to watch the awards show online

Tom Brady will almost certainly be your 2017 NFL MVP. The rest of the league’s year-end awards? They won’t be settled until the NFL Honors show, 24 hours before Brady plays in his eighth Super Bowl. The NFL Honors take place at the Northrop Memorial Auditorium at the University of Minnesota at 5 p.m. local time, but will be broadcast on tape delay on NBC (live stream at NBC Sports) at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Saturday.

Important distinctions like the league’s top rookies, defenders, offensive threats, and the Walter Payton Man of the Year will all be handed down on the eve of the Super Bowl.

The event will also unveil the newest class of NFL Hall of Fame inductees. This year’s finalists are Ray Lewis, Brian Urlacher, Edgerrin James, Randy Moss, Terrell Owens, Isaac Bruce, John Lynch, Brian Dawkins, Everson Walls, Ty Law, Tony Boselli, Kevin Mawae, Joe Jacoby, Steve Hutchinson, Alan Faneca, Robert Brazile, Jerry Kramer, and Bobby Beathard.

The broadcast kicks off at 9 p.m. ET. The awards will be hosted by Rob Riggle, whom viewers may recognize from his role as “not Frank Caliendo” from Fox’s pregame show.

Another option if the NFL is looking for a big Super Bowl halftime show reunion would be to have Timberlake call upon his old bandmates from NSYNC.

People have been discussing the potential for an NSYNC reunion ever since Timberlake was named the headliner for the Super Bowl halftime show back in the fall. In November, JC Chasez told US Weekly, “I always keep an open mind,” when talking about the possibility of a Super Bowl halftime NSYNC reunion.

This wouldn’t be new territory for the defunct boyband, as they performed at the 2001 Super Bowl alongside Aerosmith, Britney Spears, Nelly and Mary J. Blige.

Former bandmate Joey Fatone — a Giants fan — also says the gang won’t be getting back together at the Super Bowl.

“I’m here right now,” Fatone told TMZ Sports the weekend before the Super Bowl when they spotted him in Los Angeles. “If I was doing something, I’d be at rehearsals right now … there’s your proof.”bears_087-223x223

Celtics strong out of the break, rout Pistons 110-98

Daniel Theis did his part to add to Germany’s big day.

The Boston rookie scored a career-high 19 points to lift the Celtics to a 110-98 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Friday night. Afterward, Theis tried to bring some attention to a surprising Olympic victory for his native country.

Any deal the Cardinals offer Cousins would have to be back-loaded, at least after Year 1, when their salary-cap situation improves drastically starting in 2019.

With new coach Steve Wilks wanting to be aggressive in free agency, the Cardinals would have to give themselves enough breathing room to chase other players as well. Cutting tackle Jared Veldheer, guard Mike Iupati and linebacker Deone Bucannon would create about $21 million more in space, giving Arizona about $43.5 million left to use — enough to give Cousins a sizable and back-loaded contract that doesn’t weigh down Arizona’s cap in 2018.

“I’ll be wearing No. 22 from here on out,” Nance Jr. said during an impromptu news conference in the Cavs locker room before the team’s 110-103 loss to the Washington Wizards on Thursday. “My dad’s jersey will get to stay retired in the rafters, so, I couldn’t be happier with it. I think that starts next week, and I’m thrilled. I’ve been wearing 22 my whole life, and to get to wear it for the Cleveland Cavaliers is beyond a dream come true.”

Nance Jr., who joined Cleveland following a deal with the Los Angeles Lakers at the trade deadline, initially chose No. 24 to “make it easy for everybody.” He was also concerned that if he chose No. 22, that would mean his father’s No. 22 banner would have to come down from the rafters at Quicken Loans Arena.

Over the All-Star break, the Cavs organization revisited the uniform situation and got approval from their marketing department, the front office, the league and Nike in order to make the swap, according to a team spokesman. The league typically does not allow a player to switch his uniform number midseason, but Nance Jr. was granted an exception as a legacy.

Nance Jr., who competed in the dunk contest over All-Star Weekend wearing a replica of his father’s No. 22 Phoenix Suns jersey as he re-created his father’s famous “rock the cradle” slam, was proud to share the news with his dad.jaguars_009-223x223

Jon Dorenbos didn’t play for the Eagles this season, but his former team will still honor him with a Super Bowl ring.

The long snapper spent more than 10 seasons with the Eagles before he was traded to the Saints in August. That move may have ended up saving his life, as doctors discovered during a physical that he had an aortic aneurysm.

“I kind of just geeked out a little bit,” a laughing Rosen told co-host Gil Brandt and me Wednesday night on SiriusXM NFL Radio. “I was like, ‘Hey, my grandma’s the world’s largest Eagles fan. I grew up watching you guys. And it’s just so cool to meet you.'”

Rosen should feel good about being back. Despite warming up in full pads in a last-ditch effort to play, Rosen was kept out of UCLA’s bowl game in late December by the school’s medical staff because he had suffered two concussions in a four-week span.

Combined with a shoulder injury that prematurely ended his sophomore campaign, Rosen has a medical history that will draw added scrutiny from NFL suitors.

Despite ranking second among all FBS quarterbacks in 2017 with an average of 341.5 passing yards per game, Rosen admits he was disappointed in his junior season — and not just because he didn’t get to play in the finale before opting to turn pro.

One source told Rapoport that “nine months gets us to September. Then it’ll be 12 months until he really looks the same.”

“I’m aiming for Week 1,” Wentz told reporters last week. “The rehab schedule doesn’t change a whole lot. I’m feeling very confident with it.

“I 100 percent believe I’ll be back better than ever, stronger than ever, with no looking back.”

Wentz, 25, threw for 3,296 yards and ranked second in the NFL in touchdown passes with 33 to just seven interceptions despite missing the final three games of the regular season.

Rosen is earmarked as a true franchise-caliber quarterback entering April’s draft. But exactly where he gets chosen among a group that includes Southern Cal’s Sam Darnold, Wyoming’s Josh Allen and Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield remains anyone’s guess.patriots_113_f059ffba91275395-180x180