Welcome to the roundup of must-see sports news from Thursday, highlighted by newly signed Los Angeles Lakers big man DeMarcus Cousins tearing his ACL during an offseason workout, putting his future in the NBA in doubt.
We’ll also take a look at shocking video of UFC star Conor McGregor allegedly punching an elderly man at a bar and No. 1 overall pick Kyler Murray struggling in a preseason outing against the Raiders.
All this and more as we get you up to speed with the sports world on this Friday!
BOOGIE DOWN: DeMarcus Cousins Tears ACL, Putting Future in Doubt
DeMarcus Cousins just hasn’t had any luck lately on the injury front. The big man suffered yet another devastating setback on Thursday, tearing his ACL, putting his next season with the Los Angeles Lakers — and his NBA future — in question.
Shortly after the news broke that he had suffered the injury while training in Las Vegas, Cousins’ agent Jeff Schwartz confirmed the injury to ESPN.
Cousins has had three major injuries to his legs in less than two years that have cost him a lot of money. It was only about 18 months ago that he ruptured his left Achilles tendon just before becoming a highly sought after unrestricted free agent, and roughly four months since he tore his left quad during the playoffs while playing with the Golden State Warriors.
“He was going to be a big part of what we’re going to do,” Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma told the Associated Press after USA Basketball practice on Thursday. “This is our livelihood and is something that we love to do. It’s super-unfortunate for a guy like DeMarcus. You can tell how much he loves basketball through all these injuries — he’s fought back and tried to get back as early as possible. That’s kind of how the ball goes sometimes.”
Golden State coach Steve Kerr was devastated for Cousins, knowing how hard he was working to get back to full health.
“Injuries are part of the game but when you are talking about a player who has now dealt with the two most feared injuries for NBA players — the Achilles and ACL — each basically knocking you out for an entire season, to deal with that over a 2 ½-, three-year span, it’s unheard of,” Kerr said. “So I don’t know. What a blow for him, for the Lakers. He’s going to have to process it all and start all over again.”
Cousins was once one of the most feared players in the NBA for his dynamic and unique skillset for and 6-foot-11 size. Cousins is a four-time All-Star and has averaged a double-double for his career with 21.2 points and 10.9 rebounds. He also has some peripheral stats, collecting 3.2 assists, 1.4 steals and 1.2 blocks per game over his nine-year career.
The Lakers only true center on the roster is JaVale McGee, but newly signed superstar Anthony Davis could also see time there if needed.
SUCKER PUNCH? Video Emerges of UFC Star Conor McGregor Allegedly Punching Elderly Man in Dublin Bar
Conor McGregor hasn’t fought in the UFC since October of 2018. However, that hasn’t stopped the Irish fighter from throwing hands outside of the octagon.
Video emerged on Thursday of McGregor allegedly punching an elderly man in a Dublin bar. Right as McGregor delivers the shot, nearby patrons are quick to pull him away. The man stays seated at the bar following the shot from the UFC champ. The incident reportedly happened back in April.
ESPN reported that a police spokesperson said there are investigations are ongoing and that no arrests have been made.
UFC president Dana White responded to the video shortly after it was released while on The Jim Rome Show.
“That happened in April. I knew that happened, they just got the video. It’s pretty bad,” White said. “Not allegedly, it’s pretty clear [it’s him]. So apparently this was in a pub in Ireland and it was an argument over whiskey. Conor has a whiskey now and it was an argument over the whiskey and Conor reaches out and hits him with a left hook.
“I don’t know the context of it. I don’t know the entire story but he punches a guy, an older man, in the face.”
It’s not the first time McGregor has been in the headlines for a public fracas. In April 2018, he attacked a bus full of UFC fighters, throwing a metal dolly through one of the window. He served just five days of community service for the ordeal thanks to a plea deal.
In March of this year, McGregor was arrested for snatching a fan’s phone and smashing it. The charges were later dropped.
White believes at some point, McGregor will figure out that his antics away from the sport are too much.
“You get to a point where you look at a guy like Conor and you look at the bus incident in New York and the camera, the phone, the guy took the picture of him in Miami and he slaps the phone [away from him] — what’s the number?” White said. “What’s it going to cost Conor McGregor before he decides ‘all right, this isn’t worth it, enough is enough, I need to stop doing this’.
“The incident in New York cost him millions. Millions he had to pay out. He had to pay the guy with the phone. What’s he going to pay this guy that he hit in the bar? The list just goes on and on. I just don’t know when he wakes up and says ‘I’ve got to stop doing this’.”
ROOKIE STUMBLES: No. 1 Overall Pick Kyler Murray, Cardinals Stuffed by Raiders
Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray will be looking to forget his outing Thursday against the Raiders in a hurry.
Murray, the No. 1 overall pick by Arizona in this year’s draft, had a miserable time against Oakland during his first extended action of the preseason. The rookie was 3-for-8 for 12 yards and had one rush for 4 yards. He also took a pair of sacks — one that went for a safety when Raiders safety Lamarcus Joyner came blitzing off the edge on the goal line.
Arizona was outscored 17-0 in the first quarter and were down 26-0 when Murray left the game. Oakland went on to win the contest 33-26.
“Obviously, from the outside looking in, it looks a little disappointing,” Murray told ESPN’s Lisa Salters during the game. “At the same time, we know what’s important and that this is only preseason. Really vanilla right now. We’re not doing everything. Yeah, it is what it is.”
Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury didn’t sound too disappointed in his rookie’s regression after the game.
“I thought he made really good decisions,” Kingsbury said. “I thought under some adversity, penalties backed us up, in long-yardage situations, I thought he made good decisions the whole night. We just hurt ourselves with those penalties and couldn’t get things really rolling.”
The Cardinals and Murray will try again on Aug. 24 against the Vikings.
DON’T MISS THESE STORIES: Rounding Up the Top Headlines
- Roger Federer stunned in Cincinnati by Andrey Rublev
- Bryce Harper hits walk-off grand slam, Phillies beat Cubs 7-5
- NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt Jr., family OK after plane crash in Tennessee
- Odell Beckham Jr. says he’ll be ready for Browns opener, despite injury
- Tiger Woods has another tough outing, this time at BMW Championship
WHAT’S ON TAP IN THE SPORTS WORLD
2019 Little League World Series
Sixteen of the best youth baseball teams in the world are squaring off for ten days in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. The team of 11- and 12-year-olds from Honolulu, Hawaii took home the 2018 title. Only one game was able to be played in the opening day due to thunderstorms, leading to a larger slate Friday.
Game 1: Barrington RI vs South Riding VA (10 a.m. ET, ESPN)
Game 2: South Chungcheong KOR vs Maracaibo VEN (11 a.m. ET, ESPNU)
Game 3: Coon Rapids MN vs Bowling Green KY (1 p.m. ET, ESPN)
Game 4: Chofu City JPN vs Bologna ITA (2 p.m. ET, ESPNU)
Game 5: River Ridge LA vs Wailuku HI (4 p.m. ET, ESPN)
Game 6: Guadalupe MEX vs British Columbia CAN (5 p.m. ET, ESPNews)
Game 7: Elizabeth NJ vs Salem OR (7 p.m. ET, ESPN)
PGA TOUR: FedExCup Playoffs – THE BMW Championship
After the first round, Justin Thomas holds a share of the lead with Jason Kokrak after both fired rounds of 7-under 65. The top 30 in the FedExCup standings following the BMW Championship will advance to the TOUR Championship the following week at East Lake in Atlanta to play for the PGA TOUR’s top prize.
WHEN: Today; Second-round coverage of the BMW Championship begins at 3 p.m. ET
TV: Golf Channel
NFL Preseason: Week 2 (Chicago Bears vs. New York Giants)
The New York Giants, who defeated the Jets in their opener, will see what they get out of rookie quarterback Daniel Jones against a stingy Bears defense. Jones was 5-for-5 for 67 yards, including a 12-yard touchdown to Bennie Fowler in his debut, finishing with a perfect quarterback rating. With 38-year-old Eli Manning occupying the top of the depth chart, Jones should get some good run in the second preseason tilt for both teams.
When: Today; 7:30 p.m. ET
TV: NFL Network
Missed Yesterday’s Roundup? Click here for it.