Welcome to Hot Button, a round-the-clock feature that'll cover ... well, everything. At all times. In all sports.
We'll try to keep a focus as to what might most interest Pittsburgh sports fans. But the place needs Pittsburgh fans to be vibrant. Let's hear from you, including your own content and contributions to this stream. We'll be right there with you.
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MCAFEE TO ESPN
Tuesday, 4:56 p.m.: Look, as both a West Virginia University graduate and a lover of absurd things and big personalities, Pat McAfee is sort of my guy. He can do no wrong in these eyes, so the recent news that he'll serve as a color commentator for Thursday Night Football and Get Up on ESPN this season and beyond has me jazzed. Let's go. -- Hunter
Ladies and gentlemen... I'm the luckiest dude on earth.
We're just getting started beautiful people... pic.twitter.com/klS64uDFqe
— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) July 29, 2019
ELLIS LEAVES USWNT
Tuesday, 4:07 p.m.: Fresh off winning the World Cup, Jill Ellis has decided to step down as coach of the U.S. women's national team. One year remains before the next Olympics, a new GM is on the way, and a new coach will be chosen by that GM. -- DK
Tuesday, 2:35 p.m.: Wild GM Paul Fenton has been fired after just one year on the job. In a statement released by the team, owner Craig Leopold said he decided to replace Fenton because he was "not the right fit for our organization." Assistant GM Tom Kurvers will take over for Fenton until a permanent replacement is chosen. Penguins assistant GM Bill Guerin and Tom Fitzgerald, who held a similar post with the Penguins before accepting a position with New Jersey, were among the candidates for the job that eventually went to Fenton. Both conceivably could get consideration for the job again, although a source said that, as of mid-afternoon, Guerin had not heard from the Wild. Former Philadelphia GM Ron Hextall is expected to be a serious contender. -- Molinari
Tuesday, 10:55 a.m.: The Senators and Lightning made a trade:
To Ottawa #Senators
F Ryan Callahan
2020 5th RD pick (TBL)
— CapFriendly (@CapFriendly) July 30, 2019
Callahan has a degenerative back disease that is likely career-ending. The trade prevents the Lightning from having to use long-term injured reserve, which should always be avoided if possible. -- Taylor
STEADY EDDY COMEBACK?
Tuesday, 8:10 a.m.: Pirates fans will no doubt remember Edinson Volquez,who was a key piece of the 2014 club. Since his one-year stint with the PBC, Volquez pitched for the Royals for two seasons -- winning a World Series -- before joining the Marlins in 2017, a season in which he tore his UCL. He underwent Tommy John surgery, and signed a two-year deal with the Rangers in early 2018. The idea was to rehab for a full year and then join the Texas rotation, but now Volquez has decided to retire ......after he makes one last push to pitch again this season. It's an interesting viewpoint from someone who has clearly dedicated so much to his craft. The full batch of quotes are well worth the read. - Rollison
PHILLIES GET VARGAS
Monday, 11:45 p.m.: Maybe the Phillies were impressed that Jason Vargas had just beaten the Pirates on Sunday in New York -- OK, maybe not -- but they picked him up tonight in a trade with the Mets. Who can't seem to figure out whether they're buying or selling or whatever. -- DK
LE'VEON APOLOGIZES FOR ... ?
Monday, 11:05 p.m.: Takes a big man to apologize ... for letting down football fantasy owners. But that's what Le'Veon Bell did today:
this is loooong overdue!! but I want to take a moment to apologize to all the fantasy owners who picked me last year, I’m sorry I couldn’t pull through for y’all...but trust me, this year’s about to be wayyyy different, I’m bringing the 🏆🏆 this year 😈😈 pic.twitter.com/IvANCzwJ6F
— Le'Veon Bell (@LeVeonBell) July 29, 2019
LOUISIANA SUMMONS NFL
Monday, 10:40 p.m.: Insane but true: A Louisiana judge ordered that Roger Goodell and three NFL on-field officials from the NFC Championship Game in January be questioned under oath in September over the infamous no-call that helped the Rams beat the Saints. -- DK
Monday, 9:15 p.m.: Lightning goaltender Andre Vasilevskiy signed a huge eight-year contract extension, according to a tweet from his agent. Elliotte Friedman reports that the contract carries an average annual value of $9.5 million and nearly $45 million in bonuses. -- Taylor
Gold Star Hockey client Andrei Vasilevskiy has signed an 8-year extension with the Tampa Bay Lightning. He would like to thank great fans, ownership and management for making Tampa such a great place play and live for him and his family. #WeAreGoldStar! pic.twitter.com/e6ZSGWU8BC
— Dan Milstein-Hockey (@HockeyAgent1) July 29, 2019
BAUER THROWS TANTRUM
Sunday, 10:20 p.m: Polarizing Indians hurler Trevor Bauer is at it again, this time throwing a certified hissy fit at being removed from his start today after allowing a home run as part of a disastrous five-run fifth inning. He decided to take out his frustrations by throwing a ball into the outfield stands as manager Terry Francona came to remove him for a reliever. - Rollison
— FOX Sports Kansas City (@FSKansasCity) July 28, 2019
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