Byrnes, Giants a no-risk match

Byrnes, Giants a no-risk match

Jan. 20, 2010GIANTS PAGE

What on earth is taking the Giants and Eric Byrnes so long? Is inviting Byrnes to spring training -- and Byrnes accepting -- not the biggest no-brainer since you signed up for a Comcast DVR box? (OK, so that was blatant butt-kissing. Sue me. But good luck serving the papers. Ill be too busy watching every episode of "Phineas and Ferb" to answer the door.) The papers that matters here are those on which Byrnes should put his signature to a minor-league deal. Hey, it's what the fans seem to want, and it's not going to cost a dime. Worst-case scenario: Byrnes stinks. Giants cut him loose. All they lose is a little meal money. Best-case scenario: Byrnes returns to the 2007 form that prompted the Diamondbacks to give him a three-year, 30-million contract, and the Giants (the team he grew up rooting for) sign him to a big-league deal for the big-league minimum (for players with like service time). There seems to be some confusion among fans regarding Arizonas financial role in all of this, so heres the clear: The D-Backs will either pay Byrnes about 11 million this year to do nothing, or theyll have to pay him more than 10 million to play for another team. That other team would have to pay that minimum -- which in this case would be in the 800,000 range. Understand that Im not saying the Giants need another player in his mid-30s. In fact, my opinion is quite the opposite, but examine the offseason moves. The 2010 team is going to be older than the 2009 team, for better of worse. But this situation is different, mainly because theres absolutely no risk. The Bay Area native and former A's outfielder has said he wants to sign here, and at the very least hed be a nice little spring diversion story. Whats the holdup? --Mychael UrbanWhat's on your mind?EmailMychael and let himknow. He may use it in his weeklyMailbag.

Report: Raiders LB Aldon Smith applies for reinstatement to NFL

Report: Raiders LB Aldon Smith applies for reinstatement to NFL

It appears Aldon Smith wants to play football again.

The Raiders linebacker applied for NFL resinstatement, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

"Aldon is doing well,” Oakland GM Reggie McKenzie said on Wednesday night “That situation is going to be totally up to the league because he’s been in the program and they’ve monitored him. It’s up to (Roger) Goodell to say yah, nay or when. And he could say no to everything … that part is out of our hands.

“The league will take everything into consideration and Aldon will have to meet with Goodell at some point.”

On Nov. 17, 2015, Smith was hit with a one-year suspension for violating the NFL's policy on substance abuse.

[REWIND: Questionable social media video appears to show Aldon Smith]

In late July, a video surfaced on social media that appeared to show Smith holding a hand-rolled cigarette.

Less than a week later, Smith voluntarily checked himself into a treatment center.

As's Scott Bair wrote in July:

"Smith signed a two-year, $11.5 million contract with the Raiders that includes no guaranteed money. He cannot participate in team activities or have contact with Raiders personnel outside of the team’s director of player engagement.

Smith’s suspension under the NFL substance abuse policy falls under Stage Three banishment, meaning he can apply for reinstatement 60 days before his suspension ends in November. The NFL must approve his reinstatement, which will only occur if he follows stipulations required by the league’s substance abuse policy."

“Aldon is working out and getting ready,” McKenzie added. “He is in a great place and that’s the main thing. Whether Goodell lets him out or not, that’s the important thing - that he’s healthy and happy. But I would hope that we as a league reward a guy - with stipulations - who goes through the right steps and wants to get better and get his life in order."

Warriors GM Myers shares the one aspect that stood out in loss to Spurs

Warriors GM Myers shares the one aspect that stood out in loss to Spurs

In case you missed it, the Warriors' season opener did not go well.

Final score: San Antonio 129, Golden State 100.

"That was a rough one," Warriors GM Bob Myers said on 95.7 The Game on Wednesday afternoon. "It's hard to evaluate. And I don't want to be critical of the players -- we're all part of it -- but I think effort stands out. I think we were out-competed a little bit. I don't think anybody is gonna run from that statement.

"As you watch any sports event, there are plays that shift the momentum of a game, where it seemed like we were trying to get back in it. And every time we would, they would hit a shot to kind of break our back again, or we would turn it over or there would be a rebound we didn't grab. Some of it is effort, some of it's being ready to play, and then some of it's the Spurs.

"They're good. They don't beat themselves. They never have. You have to beat them ... they earned it, we didn't. And if you wanted a wakeup call, that is about as good of a one as you can get."

The Spurs won the rebounding battle 55-35. They turned 21 offensive rebounds into 26 second-chance points.

San Antonio won the turnover battle (13 to 16), scored more fast break points (24 to 20) and shot eight more free throws (26 to 18) than the Warriors.

Golden State certainly did not look like the overwhelming favorite to win the title, but Myers understands that the team is a work in progress.

"This is the analogy that I think fits the best for me -- may not fit for you guys or the players -- you spend the last 9-10 months trying to climb a mountain, and you're there. You can see it. And you're at the summit, and you can actually see the pole; you can see the flag. And then someone tells you you gotta go back down. And you say, 'Come on, man. It's right there. Can't I just take these last few steps?' And they say it's closed, you gotta go home.

"So we walk down, you spend the whole offseason and you're off that mountain. And now somebody says, 'All right. Let's go.' Those first few steps, sometimes you're not looking at the feet in front of you. You're looking at the top of the mountain and you're thinking, 'Man. I gotta get all the way back up there.' You can't do it that way. You can't look at the top. You have to look at one foot in front of the other.

"And I think some of that will have to be overcome by us -- a team that went to the Finals two years in a row -- recognizing that this is the NBA; you have to play hard; every game does matter; you have to get better. But I think that game last night -- I hope, I think -- reminded our players of that. You can't talk about the playoffs right now. You gotta talk about the regular season. You gotta talk about Friday night in New Orleans."