NBA Finals schedule; Monday update: Dion Jordan ready to apply for reinstatement; Bosh cap scenarios; UM news today
Here's the NBA Finals schedule, with all games on ABC:
Game 1 – Thu June 2 Cleveland at Golden State 9:00PM EST
Game 2 – Sun June 5 Cleveland at Golden State 8:00PM
Game 3 – Wed June 8 Golden State at Cleveland 9:00PM
Game 4 – Fri June 10 Golden State at Cleveland 9:00PM
Game 5 * Mon June 13 Cleveland at Golden State 9:00PM
Game 6 * Thu June 16 Golden State at Cleveland 9:00PM
Game 7 * Sun June 19 Cleveland at Golden State 8:00PM
* --- if necessary
DION JORDAN NEWS
A member of the Dion Jordan camp told me earlier this month (but asked me not to write at that time) that Jordan hadn't yet applied for reinstatement but would soon, when he had his "ducks in a row," so to speak.
That moment has come. Jordan told Tom Pelissero of USA Today that he will apply for reinstatement on Wednesday.
Agent Doug Hendrickson told Pelissero -- and a member of the Jordan camp told me --- that they believe Jordan has done everything necessary to be reinstated.
But the person in the Jordan camp told me there will be some concern until he's reinstated because the power ultimately rests unilaterally in the hands of Commissioner Roger Goodell and there is some measure of subjectiveness to his decision.
As Pelissero explained in his piece, Goodell will make the decision after receiving a recommendation from doctors jointly selected by the players union and league. Those doctors will interview Jordan, who also must sign a medical release form.
Goodell's decision should come between one and two months after his application for reinstatement.
Hendrickson told Peliserro that he has no reason to think Jordan won’t be reinstated.
“To me,” Hendrickson said, “he should be a blueprint for the NFL system of guys being out for a year in terms of what he’s been doing and how he’s come on of late.”
And the Dolphins have indicated they're prepared to welcome Jordan back if he's reinstated.
Hendrickson told USA Today that Jordan has been tested twice a week and he has not failed or missed a drug test since he was suspended in April 2015.
Pelissero did the interview in the San Francisco office of Tariq Azim, who has been training Jordan.
"I’m not about to waste it," Jordan told Pelissero of his opportunity to get back in the NFL. “I can't waste it and I [expletive] love doing it. Who doesn’t love running out in front of 30,000-plus fans and you get that rush? But it’s also things that you can get that rush from that can be very satisfying and can carry you on to a successful life after football.
“I just turned 26 years old, so life starts to hit you in the face. Who are you outside of those shoulder pads and helmet? And it’s weird, but I feel like it’s a blessing for me at this point in time to think about it, instead of waiting ‘til they really tell me I can’t play football no more.”
A couple of more highlights from Pelissero's well-written piece:
• Jordan says he “never, ever” had a drug problem. But he was suspended six games in 2014 after testing positive once for ecstasy and one for marijuana.
“Like a lot of rookies, you enjoy being a professional for the first time and having that cloud or whatever,” Jordan said. “I realized that’s not what it’s about. I realized real quick once I got in trouble.”
• Jordan says he stopped using drugs months before he gave the diluted sample near the end of the 2014 season.
So how did that happen? Pelissero said "according to Hendrickson, Jordan had been drinking alcohol and didn’t know he wasn’t being tested for that, so he tried to flush it out of his system."
• Jordan, 6-6, is now a bit under 270 pounds. The past Dolphins regime thought he was better suited to defensive end, not linebacker, because they didn't want to clutter his mind and wanted him to focus on rushing the quarterback (with some responsibilities in pass coverage).
But that might be revisited because the Dolphins have more of a need at linebacker than end. They're set with their top four ends: Cam Wake, Mario Williams, Jason Jones and Andre Branch.
Jordan, the third overall pick of the 2013 draft, has three sacks and 46 tackles in 26 games over two seasons. He has done good work in pass coverage, especially against tight ends such as Rob Gronkowski, so there would be an ability to move to linebacker if the Dolphins choose to change his position.
The Dolphins have been reluctant to discuss much of anything about Jordan, let alone the prospect of a position change.
BOSH CAP RAMIFICATIONS
I ran this next item in my Sunday Miami Herald newspaper column on May 8, the day after Game 3 of the Raptors series, and I realized last week I had never placed it on-line in this blog. So here it is, factors to keep in mind regarding Chris Bosh’s impact on the cap:
Chris Bosh intends to play next season and the Heat is cautiously hopeful, though nobody can say for sure that he will be able to. So what’s Miami’s recourse otherwise? There are a few options:
If Bosh and the Heat determine he should not play again, three things are needed for his salary to be removed from Miami’s cap, according to the labor deal:
1) A doctor that is jointly selected by the league and players association must agree his condition is career-ending, or severe enough to put him at risk if he continues playing.
2) The Heat then can apply to exclude his salary from its cap no earlier than the one-year anniversary of his last game (Feb. 9) if he played in 10 games in 2015-16 (which he did). If granted, the salary would be removed immediately, giving Miami an additional $25 million in 2017 free agent cap space or room to acquire an expensive player before next season’s trade deadline without needing to trade salary in return.
3) Miami must waive Bosh. If the salary exclusion is granted, and Bosh changes his mind and decides to resume his career, the Heat cannot re-sign or re-acquire him “at any time” should be continue his career, according to cap expert Larry Coon’s labor agreement summary.
Bosh is due $23.7 million, $25.3 million and $26.8 million the next three seasons and this aforementioned scenario allows for him to continue to be paid while removing his salary from Miami’s cap. Keep in mind there is nothing that can be done with Bosh to create cap space this summer, aside from a highly improbable trade.
If the Heat and Bosh determine that he should sit out next season, but aren’t ready to rule him out for his career, then a physician selected by the league and union must agree that it is “substantially more likely than not that the player would be unable to play through the following June 15.”
Miami then could apply to sign a replacement player through a disabled player’s exception, but that application must be made between July 1 and Jan. 15 and Miami could add only one player, on a one-year deal, for no more than the midlevel exception (which was $5.5 million this season and will increase). And if a team has cap space when it applies, it would count against the cap.
Keep in mind that a team cannot apply for removing the player’s salary from its cap if it has applied for the disabled player’s exception that same year, regardless of whether it was granted or not.
If you missed it over the holiday weekend, please click here for new information on the Bosh idea that the Heat rejected and an update on every Heat free agent.
UM REGIONAL SET
UM was named a No. 3 national seed in the NCAA Baseball Tournament and will open against Stetson at 7 p.m. Friday at Mark Light Field (ESPN3). FAU and Long Beach State were the other teams assigned to UM's regional.
FAU, ranked No. 13 nationally, should not be in this regional, out of fairness to UM or FAU. But the NCAA baseball selection committee factors in geography and expenses far more than the NCAA basketball committee does. It would be more appropriate for FAU to be the No. 2 seed in a regional hosted by the team ranked 14th or 15th nationally.
"I thought FAU might come here, to help the draw and cut back on expenses," UM coach Jim Morris said. "We know FAU is good, maybe the best team they've ever had. Stetson is hot. Long Beach State has always been good."
If Miami advances, it would also host the super-regional against the winner of the regional featuring favorite Ole Miss, Utah, Tulane and Boston College, with the winner advancing to the College World Series.