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Holdout is over-

Running back Larry Johnson has ended his holdout and signed a new six-year, $45 million deal with the Kansas City Chiefs. The contract locks up Johnson until 2012, and guarantees him $19 million, Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reports.

The Kansas City Star reports that Johnson will make $27.7 million over the first three years of the extension.

Johnson reported to Chiefs camp today and practiced with the team. Johnson is presumably in good shape, as he is already getting carries with the starting unit, and he worked on live pass-blocking drills. John Clayton of ESPN reported that Johnson could play in Thursday night's preseason game against the Saints.

 

Busch wins at soggy Michigan-

Kurt Busch found victory lane for the second time in three races in the special Tuesday version of the 3M Performance 400 at Michigan International Speedway. The race, originally scheduled for Sunday, suffered through two straight complete washout days and a 45-minute fog delay Tuesday.

Martin Truex Jr. ran second while Jimmie Johnson came home third.

Series point leader Jeff Gordon faded late after not taking tires on a late pit stop, leaving the No. 24 loose. He slid into a charging Matt Kenseth and looped the car on the frontstretch before getting stuck in the mud -- finishing 27th, one lap down.

Busch helped to solidify his entry into this year's Chase for the Nextel Cup with the victory. He still sits 12th in the standings -- the cutoff point -- but has increased his lead to 163 points over Dale Earnhardt Jr. in 13th with just 3 races until the cutoff at Richmond.

TGOM's Blaniac Challenge added some more money to the Victory Junction today with Dave Blaney finishing a season-high sixth, rocketing Blaney to 33rd in owner point standings. Maybe she needs to buy a t-shirt, too?

The major story of the day, though, was that NASCAR averted a complete logistical nightmare by getting in the event, in its entirety nonetheless. Doomsday scenarios were being brought out if the race couldn't be completed by Wednesday afternoon that the race could move to the last race in the Chase, shuffling the Chase race order and potentially forcing the nearly impossible task of holding a major event outside in Michigan during the middle of November.

 

Eddie Griffin Dies-

Sad news out of Houston: Eddie Griffin has died.

Police had to use dental records to identify the former NBA player. He died in a fiery crash on Friday after his SUV collided with a freight train. His body was identified today.

Griffin was a very promising player when he came out of Seton Hall, but his career never took off. Despite being a multi-talented big man with handles and the ability to shoot from the perimeter, he couldn't keep his head on straight.

The five-year veteran and former seventh overall draft pick had battled alcohol problems since coming out of Seton Hall. He was suspended by the NBA for five games in January for violating the anti-drug program.

Eddie Griffin, who played for the Minnesota Timberwolves last season before getting cut in March, was dead on the scene of the accident and his body was burned beyond recognition. He was 25 years old.

 

Barber twits twins slam Eli-

Did anyone actually think that the Eli Manning/Tiki Barber feud would end after only a few short days? Did anyone actually think that Barber would allow Manning to have the last word?

If you thought either of those things, you'd be wrong -- and you'd be foolish.

Barber made it a point to address Manning's comments tonight on Siruis Radio's "Barber Shop." He also recruited some help in attempt to further damage Eli's reputation. Twin brother Ronde Barber accompanied Tiki on the set and joyously joined in on a pathetically immature mocking of the New York Giants quarterback.

It was a constant barrage for almost two hours with Ronde making comments about Eli's "testes finally dropping" and Tiki adding that "Kerry Collins was a true leader," claiming the Giants "shouldn't have let him go." They also added that Eli's return-fire was "laughable" and that Tiki is part of the media now and it's his job to be controversial.

Now that the real Tiki has shown himself, a few things have become blatantly obvious. Unlike Lawrence Taylor, Phil Simms and Harry Carson who are ex-Giants, Tiki is just an ex-football player. It's clear that he could car less about the organization and only about himself. Additionally, he also proved exactly what's wrong with the media when he stated that it's his job to be controversial.

Oddly enough, he fails to realize that his job also involves quality analysis. He's not going to be taken seriously if he continues to make bogus comments like suggesting Kerry Collins was a "true leader." In all fairness to Collins, he was an alcoholic who stumbled his way through an NFL career and got lucky one year with the Giants when the offensive line jelled together for a single fluke season and the defense over-performed. His true leadership skills were exposed in that horrid Super Bowl loss to Baltimore -- a game in which Tiki Barber was rendered irrelevant.

And amongst all the foolish things that spewed from Tiki's mouth, he claimed that he would have been a surefire Hall of Famer had his heart remained in it. Ironic, because he seemed to "lose his heart" when Tom Coughlin came to town, which was actually the moment he became a legitimate running back and stood an actual chance of being considered for football's greatest honor.

Perhaps TiVi is forgetful, so I'll **** a favor and refresh his memory.

Prior to 2004, Tiki Barber was better known for his fumbling problems than his leadership or on-field performances. In fact, the very media that he currently works with questioned him as he now questions Eli. I remember it like it was yesterday: "Barber fumbles again;" "Barber drops the ball;" "Giants need a quality running back to compete."

And finally, who is Ronde Barber to say anything? In a sport where names are made based on victories, Manning is 1-0 against Mr. I wish I was as famous as Tiki.

 

Our boy, Matt Murphy-

Earlier today, Matt Watson alerted you to the fact that Matt Murphy, he of No. 756 home run ball fame, was hawking his Jose Reyes jersey he wore that historic night on eBay. (Get your bids in now, kids!) MW also let you know Murphy wasn't quite sure what he was going to do with the ball just yet -- he wasn't supposed to announce his decision to 5 p.m. EST today.

In a not-so-shocking revelation, he has decided to sell the ball.

The 21-year-old New York man said Tuesday he had no choice but to sell the ball -- several people told him he would be taxed on the souvenir just for holding on to it.

"It wasn't hard," Murphy said. "It was simple math. I'm upset by the decision I had to make. ... I wanted to keep it. I'm young. I don't have the bank account."

[ ... ]

Sotheby's/SCP Auctions will handle the sale at www.scpauctions.com beginning Aug. 28 and going through Sept. 15. The starting bid has not been determined, and auction officials estimated the ball would bring at least $500,000.

Can't blame Murphy at all. There's certainly no reason to sit on the ball and get taxed for it. Make bills, son. I'm no memorabilia connoisseur, but $500,000 seems a bit steep. We'll see what it really garners soon enough here.

 

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