Sports briefs for March 10, 2014

Posted March 10, 2014, at 7:09 p.m.
Last modified March 10, 2014, at 8:36 p.m.

Phil Jackson expected to take Knicks job

Phil Jackson is expected to accept the New York Knicks’ offer to join its front office, a league source told ESPN.

“The Knicks have a sense of what’s going to happen,” the source said. “And as of right now, it looks like Phil’s taking the job. There’s always the possibility of something falling apart at the last minute, but the Knicks’ sense is that he’s joining them.”

Details, including Jackson’s job title, how much time he will spend in New York and when he will start the job, are still being worked out, according to the report. He reportedly turned down a recent offer to coach the team.

Jackson is expected to make a decision in the next day or so. No announcement from the team has been scheduled.

Jackson’s role will be an integral one for the Knicks, unlike when he acted as a consultant for the Detroit Pistons. He will reportedly be paid well to make basketball decisions for the Knicks, although owner James Dolan is expected to have a say.

Kansas C Embiid sees back specialist

Kansas freshman center Joel Embiid went to Los Angeles on Monday see a back specialist, but coach Bill Self expects him to be ready for the postseason.

Embiid missed the final two games of the regular season with a lower-back injury. He is seeking a second opinion on the status of his injury.

“This was the plan all along,” Self said. “We don’t anticipate anything new, but we owe it to Joel and his family to know exactly what we’re dealing with.”

Self said he hopes to learn later Monday what the doctor finds out. He did acknowledge that Embiid could miss this week’s Big 12 Tournament.

The 7-footer is considered by some to be the No. 1 pick in this year’s NBA draft if he decides to leave school.

Fords will continue owning Lions

The Detroit Lions announced Monday the Ford family will continue to maintain controlling interest of the team, a day after the death of longtime owner William Clay Ford Sr.

Martha Ford, Ford’s widow, will gain controlling interest while son William Clay Ford Jr. will remain the team’s vice chairman.

“Pursuant to long-established succession plans, Mr. Ford’s controlling interest in the Lions passes to Mrs. Martha Ford,” the Lions said in a statement. “She and her four children will continue to be involved in the ownership of the franchise, as they have during Mr. Ford’s tenure.”

Ford died of pneumonia at age 88, Ford Motor Co. announced in a statement Sunday. He was the last surviving grandson of automotive pioneer Henry Ford. He owned the Lions since 1964.

Ford bought the Lions for $4.5 million. The team is currently worth close to $900 million, according to Forbes.

Kings’ Nolan suspended one game

The NHL suspended Los Angeles Kings forward Jordan Nolan for one game on Monday for punching Edmonton Oilers forward Jesse Joensuu.

The NHL said Nolan punched an unsuspecting opponent, Joensuu, during Sunday night’s game. The incident occurred at 19:56 of the second period. Nolan was assessed a double-minor penalty for roughing.

Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement and, based on his average annual salary, Nolan will forfeit $3,589.74. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

Blackhawks, Fournier agree to three-year deal

The Chicago Blackhawks agreed to terms with defenseman Dillon Fournier on a three-year contract Monday.

Fournier, the team’s second-round pick in the 2012 draft, has 13 goals and 19 assists in 36 games with the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. He had a career-high tying three points three times and has scored a career-best tying two goals twice.

The 19-year-old has 108 points (31 goals and 77 assists) in 207 career QMJHL games with Lewiston and Rouyn-Noranda from 2010-2013, and was named to the Canadian Hockey League Top Prospects Game following the 2011-12 campaign.

Broncos’ Kuper retires after eight seasons

Denver Broncos guard Chris Kuper, an eight-year NFL veteran and three-time team captain, informed the team of his intention to retire on Monday.

Kuper’s decision creates nearly $6 million in salary cap room for the Broncos.

Kuper, 31, was a starting guard from his second season of 2007 until he suffered a dislocated left ankle in the final game of the 2011 season. He started only five regular-season games in 2012, plus the playoff game, and in one more game last season.

Kuper, the longest-tenured offensive player on the Broncos, appeared in 90 career regular-season games and one postseason contest while spending his entire eight-year career in Denver. Selected by the club in the fifth round of the 2006 NFL Draft from the University of North Dakota, Kuper totaled 79 career starts that rank seventh in Broncos history among offensive guards.

Seahawks re-sign DE Bennett for 4 years

The Seattle Seahawks re-signed defensive end Michael Bennett to a four-year contract.

“I don’t think there’s any better situation, no matter how much money is involved,” Bennett said Monday afternoon.

Bennett was an afterthought in 2013 free agency but became vital to the Seahawks’ Super Bowl-winning defense. Bennett’s brother, Martellus, plays tight end for the Chicago Bears, who were making a strong play for the defensive end. But Michael Bennett said Monday there was no deal available with more guaranteed money.

Bennett will make $28.5 million over four years. He gets $10 million in 2014, $16 million through the first two years, and $21 million over three. Of the total, $16 million is guaranteed, according to multiple reports.

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