Morning Links: Anthony Talks Ongoing, Pujols Deal Approaching?, NFL Mea Culpa

Steve O Speak

Carmelo Deal Hitting A Potential Snag:

While rumors abound that the Lakers are entering the Carmelo, I still think the Knicks are the likely front runners in any deal. That is as long as Wilson Chandler is still able to be a centerpiece player. The report out there is that Chandler is experiencing pain in his knee and could need offseason surgery, which would basically be the last two things the Nuggets would want to hear. Chandler has developed into a very good player and a solid return for the Nuggets (along with other pieces), but there is some injury history there. Denver is going to need to be 100% sure about his medicals before they do any deal.

Albert Pujols Negotiation Deadline Fast Approaching:

Albert Pujols is set to become a free agent next November, but the real date to watch for is early next week, Feb. 16th when Pujols reports to training camp. He has long made it clear that he doesn’t want any ongoing talks during the season or spring training, so if the Cardinals don’t workout a deal now, they’d have to wait for the end of the season to prevent him with becoming a free agent. The problem is free agency starts 10 days after the world series ends, so if St. Louis goes deep into the playoffs they might not have that much time to resume negotiations. Also, if the Cardinals have a bad season or LaRussa decides to leave it could just make Pujols want to test the free agent waters. Sure he could still resign at that point, but do you really want the New York, L.A., and Chicago teams opening up their bank accounts for Pujols? I’m thinking a deal gets done by early next week and this ends up a non-factor. But it could get very interesting come Feb. 15th.

NFL Giving An Expensive Apology:

For the 400 fans who weren’t able to sit in their seats for the Super Bowl the NFL has upped the ante. Affected fans can now choose between a package of $2,400 (three times face value of the ticket) and tickets to next year’s Super Bowl or tickets to any future Super Bowl (including next years) plus round trip airfare and hotel accommodations. Now the 2nd package doesn’t include any money, but fans can wait each year after the Conference Championship games to decided if they want to redeem their Super Bowl tickets, and considering most of these were fans of the Packers and Steelers, they will probably have another shot at a Super Bowl in the next 5 years. While another Super Bowl could be on the horizon, I think I’d take option A. Sure you would limit yourself to only one Super Bowl, but as I said before there is a fair shot the Steelers and/or the Packers return next year. Also, if you take tickets for next year you can sell them on the 2nd hand market meaning you can get the money back if your team doesn’t go back. While it is nice to have a free Super Bowl trip in your back pocket, it might not be teams you’d like to see for quite sometime.

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