Week In Review: Pitino Pays $3,000 For Abortion

Rick Pitino’s reputation has taken a huge hit, as the Louisville b-ball coach impregnated the woman who’s been trying to extort him, then paid $3,000 for the abortion.

Rick Pitino Karen Sypher

And now Karen Sypher says her marriage to Cardinals equipment manager Tim was all just a sneaky plot by Pitino to keep an eye on her. But hey, don’t blame Rick - blame 9/11!

• The release party for the new Miami Dolphins cheerleaders bikini calendar was quite the spectacle.

Jay Mariotti denies that he’s going to be writing for the Chicago Tribune. Can’t wait to see Jay’s debut column in the Trib on September 1st!

Manny Ramirez gets a memorable reception from San Francisco Giants fans - the same kind of reception that Barry Bonds used to get everywhere else except in the Bay Area.

• Engaged Malibu fashion designer Ali Kay may have encouraged Reggie Miller’s unwanted advances by sending the ex-NBA star photos of herself in bed & in a bikini. At least Ali’s still pretty good at making clothes.

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New Bar Refaeli SI Swimsuit Pics Put Up on Twitter

Twitter really is a wonderful thing. If it’s not Olympic gymnast Nastia Liukin uploading lovely photos of herself, it’s other ladies uploading photos of Larry Johnson buying big bottles of booze for buxom babes.

Bar Refaeli

And score another one for the social networking application, as we get to enjoy some new pics of Bar Refaeli & other beauties showing their stuff for next year’s Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. You’ll recall that Refaeli was the cover girl for this year’s edition. And from what we can tell from this little preview, 2010 is going to be just as titillating.

(More pics after the jump? You better believe it.)

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SI Moving Swimsuit Issue Release Party To Vegas

Sorry, David Letterman - you’ve been trumped by Vegas. For the last two years, the “Late Show” host has been lucky enough to make the official announcement of which lovely lady would be gracing the cover of Sports Illustrated’s annual swimsuit issue. (For those who need a refresher, it was Marisa Miller in 2008 and Bar Refaeli in 2009.)

Marisa Miller Bar Refaeli SI swimsuit covers

Well, the suits over at SI decided that their big bikini-based announcement needed more pizazz than just Paul Shaffer on keyboards, so they’re taking their swimsuit show out west - to Vegas!

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Wild Week In Review: Sex, Swimsuits & Steroids

• Congratulations to Bar Refaeli for making the cover of this year’s Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue.

Bar Refaeli Jeanene Fox

• And we already have a suggestion for next year’s cover girl - Rick Fox’s foxy sister Jeanene.

• But will we soon see full nudity in the sports mag’s annual edition? That could be a reason why the Laker Girls turned down a chance to pose for a SI photoshoot.

• We expected to A-Rod to come out sooner or later, but little did we know it would be about past steroid use. And who spilled the beans first? An alleged SI stalker? His ex-wife? No wonder he needed an escape to the Bahamas with two hottie companions.

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Report: Laker Girls Turned Down SI Swimsuit Shot

This week I haven’t sensed the huge buzz that normally accompanies the SPORTS ILLUSTRATED swimsuit issue. And apparently I’m not alone.

Lakers Girls turn down Sports Illustrated

(Perhaps trauma of this swimsuit encounter played a role in the decision)

Brian Perdue of the ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER reports that perhaps the SI swimsuit issue isn’t exciting high profile female sex symbols as much as it used to:

Lakers beat writer Janis Carr said that the Lakers turned down an offer to include Laker Girls in the spread. Still, the omission is comparable to leaving the Dallas Cowboy cheerleaders out of an NFL cheerleader photo shoot.

The amazing thing about it, according to Perdue, is that it wasn’t the Lakers organization that scuttled the idea. Read more…

Speed Read: Hansbrough, UNC Handle Duke Again

You have to hand it to the Cameron Crazies. Not so much for dressing a student as Beaker from “The Muppet Show” to point out the resemblance with North Carolina star Tyler Hansbrough. Frankly, this is old news. But having said Duke student/Muppet wear a T-shirt that says “D League,” as the CHARLOTTE OBSERVER noted. That’s classic - even North Carolina players were laughing over that one.

Tyler Hansbrough and Beaker

But then again, it was the Tar Heels and Hansbrough who had the last laugh again, as North Carolina pulled away in the second half to take down the Blue Devils 101-87 at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Which made Hansbrough and senior teammate Danny Green the only two players to play in four straight victories at Duke since Mike Krzyzewski took over as the Blue Devils’ coach.

Mike Krzyzewski reacts to UNC loss

The spark for North Carolina was Ty Lawson, who scored 21 points in the second half to help the Tar Heels rally from an eight-point halftime deficit. (Good thing there is nothing the Duke fans could have given him grief about.) But as usual, the story was Hansbrough, whether he was hitting key three-pointers, getting compared to a Muppet, or getting cracked in the jaw by a Kyle Singler elbow:

You have to love the crackerjack ESPN crew of Mike Patrick and Dick Vitale totally missing the elbow. But at least Vitale - once he noticed what was happening - actually admitted that a Duke player did a bad, bad thing. Unlike Billy Packer, who probably would have chided Hansbrough for ramming into Singler’s elbow with his face.

And what’s the best way to celebrate a big win if you’re a North Carolina student? Why, burning a Christmas tree, of course. Take that, Christmas! (Why they still had a tree in February is another question.):

Speaking of Christmas…it’s time to give you the gift that keeps on giving: Brett Favre is finally gone. After the Jets’ meltdown to end the season, it was obvious what was going to happen, but it’s official: he’s filed his retirement paperwork with the league and is apparently done. No teary press conferences, no 24/7 ESPN media watch, just an old man making sure, as the NEW YORK DAILY NEWS reports, he gets his severance pay like an auto worker reaching retirement age.

Brett Favre

So our national nightmare is over. Unless Favre goes online and reads stories like those from Dan Pompei of the CHICAGO TRIBUNE, who immediately wrote a column that suggested Favre could still “lead certain teams to the Super Bowl. Certain teams meaning “Minnesota Vikings.” For God’s sake, Pompei, let’s not give him any ideas - this is like Edward R. Murrow going on the radio and suggesting that Joseph McCarthy should try exposing gay in the military instead of Communists.

Other sports stories that happened last night as you regretted eating peanut butter and peanut sandwiches for dinner (with peanut brittle for dessert):

  • CNBC says that jewelry maker Robindira Unsworth received a surprise when one of her creations wound up dangling from the neck of Bar Refaeli on the cover of the SI Swimsuit Issue. Which makes me wonder: has anyone even noticed her necklace while looking at the cover? Perhaps boyfriend Leonard DiCaprio bought it for her, a nice gift - as the LA TIMES says some people think the SI cover was.
  • Bar Refaeli SI swimsuit cover

  • GOAL.COM says Mexico soccer captain Rafael Marquez is really sorry that he drove his spikes into US goalkeeper Tim Howard’s thigh, earning him a red card in his team’s 2-0 loss in a World Cup qualifying match in Columbus last night.  He might want to apologize to Mexico coach Sven-Goran Eriksson, who is now in danger of losing his job after El Tri have only won one of their last seven games.
  • Remember the testing program Lance Armstrong was going to undertake during his comeback to prove that he was free of performing-enhancing drugs? What a shock - it’s been scrapped, as KCRA-TV reports that he now claims that it’s too expensive and complex to pull off this year. I guess getting rid of Favre is all we could ask for.
  • Just what the already-volatile Dallas Cowboys’ locker room needs: Ray Lewis. The DALLAS MORNING NEWS reports that Terrell Owens has been making phone calls trying to recruit the Ravens’ linebacker/non-murder to play for Dallas this season.
  • Despite claims in a lawsuit filed by his ex-girlfriend, Roberto Alomar tells ESPN that he’s perfectly healthy and does not have AIDS. And he’s willing to spit anywhere needed to prove it.
  • Former Congressman Tom Davis tells NBCSPORTS.COM that it’s time to “cut your losses,” and that you can expect charges against Roger Clemens for lying under oath soon.
  • A woman in Fresno put up her old baseball card on eBay for $10, but decided to pull the item after receiving way too many e-mails asking if it was real. It turns out that the 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings card was real, and worth a lot more than she thought: the AP says she sold it yesterday for almost $65,000.
  • Speaking of eBay, IDIOTS ON SPORTS found this beauty up for sale on the auction site, although I doubt it’s worth $65,000:
  • Bobby Labonte limo thing

  • The WACO TRIBUNE reports that Baylor football recruit Willie Jefferson was arrested 10 days before signing his letter of intent and charged with marijuana possession after cops found a “small bag of marijuana, a marijuana cigarette and several cigars in a cavity on the floorboard of the vehicle” Jefferson was driving. This is why you don’t by a used car from Tommy Chong.
  • See, Sirius XM isn’t going bankrupt. If it was, why would they be flying Chris Russo out first-class to spring training- twice! - as he told Howard Stern yesterday. Just like there’s no way the banks could be going under if they can still afford to fly their executives out to expensive resorts for annual meetings.

Which rivalry are you most sick of hearing about?

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SI To Push Models Into Nudity For Swimsuit Issue?

I haven’t seen many images from the SPORTS ILLUSTRATED Swimsuit Issue™ today, but I did watch a little of this SI-shot video of cover model Bar Refaeli, via TMZ:

Bar Refaeli Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Model

(SI marketing geniuses to consider selling ‘uncensored’ swimsuit feature?) 

Over the years, SI has slowly forced the models into more revealing poses. First came models in thongs in the ’90s, and now we have full-blown implied nudity on virtually every page of the issue and SI.com.

Will Sports Illustrated eventually go to an uncensored (nude) version of the swimsuit feature on SI.com?

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With the progression of Sports Illustrated’s racy content, that can only mean one thing. I fully expect that we will see nudity in future Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issues™. Read more…

Report: Bar Refaeli SI’s Next Swimsuit Cover Girl

According to a report in COED MAGAZINE, a publication which we have no reason to doubt, the cover girl of this year’s SPORTS ILLUSTRATED SWIMSUIT EDITION is none other than the beautiful Bar Refaeli. The magazine cites snoops at the taping of tonight’s edition of “The Late Show with David Letterman“, where the cover girl is scheduled to appear and be revealed.

Bar Refaeli

(The beauty of Ms. Refaeli is certainly Bar-none)

Really, this was a story that was going to be full of good news no matter which way it turned out. According to all relevant straw polls, Refaeli and Andy Roddick’s fiance, Brooklyn Decker, were the heavy favorites.

Brooklyn Decker

(Guess Brooklyn will have to wait ’til next year)

The 23-year-old Refaeli is also Leonardo DiCaprio’s girlfriend, so SPORTS ILLUSTRATED was essentially given the rare and brilliant choice of picking the attachment of an American celebrity whichever way it went.

(More brilliant Bar Refaeli photos after the jump.)

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