Washington Wizards v Boston Celtics
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This is an article version of the CBS Sports HQ AM Newsletter, the ultimate guide to every day in sports. You can sign up to get it in your inbox every weekday morning here.

Good morning to everyone but especially to...


It's a combination of multi-time World Cup champions and World Cup debutants. Experience and youth. The stars of yesterday, today and tomorrow.

It's the United States women's national soccer team World Cup roster:

  • GOALKEEPERS (3): Aubrey Kingsbury, Casey Murphy, Alyssa Naeher
  • DEFENDERS (7): Alana Cook, Crystal Dunn, Emily Fox, Naomi Girma, Sofia Huerta, Kelley O'Hara, Emily Sonnett
  • MIDFIELDERS (7): Savannah DeMelo, Julie Ertz, Lindsey Horan, Rose Lavelle, Kristie Mewis, Ashley Sanchez, Andi Sullivan
  • FORWARDS (6): Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe, Trinity Rodman, Sophia Smith, Alyssa Thompson, Lynn Williams

Fourteen of the 23 players have never played in a World Cup, but in Morgan, Rapinoe and O'Hara, the USWNT has three players in their fourth World Cup. Becky Sauerbrunn would have joined that group, but she couldn't quite make it back from a foot injury. Now Girma, a rising star in NWSL is expected to step up in central defense.

Girma, DeMelo, Smith and Thompson are the top newcomers, notes our Roger Gonzalez in the Golazo Starting XI newsletter, which you can subscribe to here. Our Sandra Herrera has surprises, snubs and takeaways from the roster, including...

  • Herrera: "Savannah DeMelo: She's only in her second year as a professional soccer player in NWSL, but her rise in form from year one to year two is s major signs of her ongoing development. Her place on the roster comes with question marks around Rose Lavelle, who hasn't played since mid-April, and it's a compliment to DeMelo's game that the staff wants her as an option if Lavelle needs rotation."

The USWNT's World Cup opener is July 21 against Vietnam. You can see the full schedule here.

Honorable mentions

And not such a good morning for...


Memphis men's basketball head coach Penny Hardaway was suspended for the first three games of the Tigers' 2023-24 campaign due to recruiting violations, the NCAA announced Wednesday.

  • The NCAA Committee on Infractions said that Hardaway's infraction involved him and an assistant coach visiting a high-school junior in his home during a time of the year when visits with juniors are only allowed at the player's school.
  • "The head coach bears ultimate responsibility for what occurred in his program," the COI's decision states. "He could have taken steps to prevent the violations from occurring but did not."
  • Memphis will also pay a $5,000 fine and serve a one-year probationary period in addition to its current probation stemming from the James Wiseman IARP case. This latest violation was discovered during the Wiseman probe but is not related to that recruitment.

Not so honorable mentions

  • Hal Steinbrenner is "confused" as to why Yankees fans are upset. Anthony Volpe's struggles might be one reason.

NBA Draft is here! Final mocks, latest insight, trade candidates and more 🏀

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Happy NBA Draft day, everyone! I don't know about you, but the NBA Draft is my favorite: dreams coming true, trades, surprises -- it's all so fun, and it's all jam-packed into one night, so make sure you know how to watch.

Our Colin Ward-Henninger has released his final mock draft, and here's his top 10:

The picks themselves, of course, are only part of the fun. The rumors will be swirling, the trades will be plentiful. Our Matt Norlander has the latest buzz, including...

  • Norlander: "If I'm setting the over/under a 1.5 trades in the top 14, I guess I'll take the over. Dallas at No. 10 is considered — by a wide margin — to be the most likely trade target among all teams picking in the lottery. ... The other teams (in order) considered potentially open to swapping more than others: Indiana at No. 7, Utah at No. 9, Orlando at No. 11."

Matt has a ton of awesome insight, so be sure to check this piece out. Speaking of trades, Sam Quinn put together one trade idea for all 14 lottery teams. Here's more:

Celtics acquire Kristaps Porzingis in three-team trade with Wizards, Grizzlies after initial deal falls apart 🏀

The Celtics thought they had one of the most skilled bigs in the NBA. The Clippers thought they had the reigning Sixth Man of the Year. The Wizards thought the next step of their tear-down -- and some more ammo for their rebuild -- had arrived. Then things fell apart.

Then the Celtics and Wizards -- with help from the Grizzlies -- put it back together.

After a three-team trade headlined by Kristaps Porzingis to Boston and Malcolm Brogdon to LA collapsed due to issues with Brogdon's medicals, Boston, Washington and Memphis completed the following swap:

All right, let's explain this quickly... or try to.

  • Porzingis, 27, averaged a career-high 23.2 points last season and played 65 games, his most since 2016-17. He was one of just three players with at least 100 3-pointers and 100 blocks along with Brook Lopez and Jaren Jackson JrJoining Al Horford and Robert Williams III, Porzingis makes this a terrific frontcourt. But he opted into a $36-million player option, giving Boston three very expensive players in Porzingis, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown.
  • By adding Smart, 29, the Grizzlies now have each of the last two Defensive Player of the Year winners in Jackson (2022-23) and Smart (2021-22). Smart will serve as a tone-setter for Memphis, especially over the first 25 games of the season, for which Ja Morant is suspended.
  • Days after trading Bradley Beal to Phoenix, Washington continues to shed salary and, for lack of a better term, tank. Jones, 27, is a really solid player, and both he and Chris Paul (acquired in the Beal trade) could fetch more trade value in the future.

As for some other news:

Ranking NFL triplets: Crowded middle tier features young and old 🏈


We're rolling through our NFL skill position triplet rankings, and after going over the bottom-feeders in yesterday's newsletter, we arrive in the middle, with teams ranked 20th to seventh.

One team I'm interested in on the lower end of this group is the Saints, ranked 19th. Here's our Jared Dubin to explain:

  • Dubin: "QB: Derek Carr RB: Alvin Kamara (or Jamaal Williams) WR: Chris Olave -- Well, this seems about right for the Saints. Olave was fantastic as a rookie and looks every bit like a future star. But Carr has been somewhere between slightly above average and slightly below average for the majority of his career, and Kamara took a step back last year and may or may not be facing a significant suspension."

I could see this group finishing well above or well below this ranking. What if a change of scenery is just what Carr needed, and Kamara and Olave (and maybe even Michael Thomas) thrive thanks to Carr's quick release and accuracy? On the other hand, what if 2022 was a sign of things to come for both Kamara and Carr, and Olave hits a sophomore slump? This triplet could lead the Saints to the playoffs... or to a potential overhaul next offseason.

As for a team taking a huge leap forward, the Jets rank ninth with Aaron Rodgers teaming up with Breece Hall and Garrett Wilson -- a 39-year-old quarterback alongside a running back/wide receiver duo that's 44 years old combined. Rodgers' play with Gang Green will be a top storyline all year long.

We have the top six teams coming out today, so stay tuned!

What we're watching Thursday 📺

Wake Forest at LSU, 7 p.m. on ESPN2
🏀 NBA Draft, 8 p.m. on ABC and ESPN (details)
🏀 Sun at Lynx, 8 p.m. on CBS Sports Network