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  • Source: Jeremy Lin to ink offer sheet

    Jeremy Lin has verbally agreed to sign a four-year offer sheet with the Houston Rockets on July 11, according to a source close to the talks.

    The four-year deal is worth $10.2 million over the first two seasons and $9.3 million in each of the last two years. The fourth season is a team option.

    The Knicks would have three days to match the offer after Lin, a restricted free agent, signs it July 11.

    A report in the New York Post on Wednesday, citing a league source, said the Rockets were planning to offer Lin a backloaded deal worth roughly $30 million. According to the same source, the deal would pay Lin $5 million in the first season and $5.2 million in the second, and then would increase to as much as $10 million per year in the third and fourth seasons.

    "Jeremy Lin's an excellent player," Rockets general manager Daryl Morey told the Post. "We got to know him firsthand when he was with the Rockets early this season. We think he'd make a fantastic addition to our team."

    NBA NBA free agency is under way and ESPN.com has you covered with all the latest deals, trades and potential moves.

    The Knicks can offer Lin, a restricted free agent, a four-year deal worth $24.5 million.

    In 35 games with the Knicks this past season, Lin averaged 14.6 points and 6.2 assists per game.

    While both Lin and the Knicks are hoping for a reunion, sources told ESPN The Magazine's Chris Broussard this past weekend that if a club offers Lin a backloaded contract that pays him an eight-figure salary in the third and fourth years, as Houston has done, the Knicks could be given pause about matching the offer.

    With the new collective bargaining agreement employing a more punitive luxury tax, beginning in the 2013-14 season, the Knicks are extremely concerned about the financial ramifications of such a deal, sources said.

    Passenger could be asked to give drink samples to TSA

    Passengers say their problem is not with the rules at the airport. They understand why drinks are not allowed through security, but when they buy one while they wait for their flight, they say the TSA should not ask to test it.

    Passengers say traveling is a big enough stress, but now some are worried the drinks they are getting are not safe.

    The TSA would not say what they are testing for or why they are doing it, but travelers say they have a right to know.

    "I'm always glad that my safety is a priority, I just think testing drinks after they've already been bought might be a little extreme," infrequent flyer Jennifer Smart said.

    "The water or or the juices or anything you buy here in the airport, TSA is going to come over and look and check and test it? That's just ridiculous," world traveler Thomas Burgard said.

    We asked the TSA about the drink testings and they said, "TSA employees have many layers of security throughout airports. Passengers may be randomly selected for additional screening measures at the checkpoint or in the gate at any time."

    Passengers we spoke to also said they think the price of drinks are too expensive. If security is going to test them, it should be before they are purchased, so they do not waste their money.

    Obama's 'American story' faces fresh scrutiny

    When he first took the national stage, with his electrifying keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in the summer of 2004, Barack Obama, then an Illinois state senator, briefly summarized his unusual life story, with its biracial themes and trans-continental setting. "I stand here knowing that my story is part of the larger American story," he said, adding: "In no other country on earth is my story even possible."

    That story, of course, would become even more astonishing, and profoundly American, four years later, when its teller would be elected president of the United States. But the first time Obama related his life story -- and in the greatest detail -- was with the publication of his 1995 memoir, Dreams From My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance.

    The book, which won wide critical acclaim and rose to No. 1 on the New York Times bestseller list, recounted the complex tale that is by now familiar to most Americans: the young Obama's racial confusion as the son of a white mother from Kansas and a dark-skinned, absentee father from Kenya; his mother's remarriage to, and eventual split from, the boy's Indonesian stepfather, with a spell in a Muslim school in Jakarta; the boy's rearing by white grandparents in Hawaii, who sent him to a private school there; his journeys through Occidental College and Columbia University, marked by a shifting intellectual worldview and numerous romances, some of them inter-racial; his path-breaking stint as the first black editor of the Harvard Law Review; and his exploits as a community organizer and Chicago lawyer with a deepening interest in politics.

    In the introduction, Obama openly admitted changing some people's names and compressing both characters and chronology, mostly for the sake of narrative flow. Over the years, the president’s biographers have made inroads piecing together which characters were based on which real-life individuals, and which events were compressed or conflated.

    That process has now reached a kind of zenith, with the publication last month of Barack Obama: The Story, a deeply researched, 600-page study of the president's ancestry and early life by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and Washington Post editor David Maraniss. The result reflects the hyper-scrutiny that attaches to our chief executives. It also offers a window into how much of the life story of this self-made man may have been made up.

    By some counts, The Story presents more than three-dozen instances of material discrepancy where Dreams fails to align with the facts as Maraniss reports them. Case in point: Maraniss confirmed that Mr. Obama's mother, Ann Dunham, left his father, Barack Obama, Sr., a volatile bigamist, and not the other way around, as related in Dreams.

    Dreams also related the tale of Obama's paternal grandfather, Hussein Onyango, who was said to have been detained and tortured in a prison outside Nairobi for six months because of his brave defiance of British colonialists. But after a half-dozen interviews and other research, Maraniss deemed the tale "unlikely."

    Maraniss did not respond to several calls requesting an interview, but Fox News caught up with him outside a Washington book signing.  "I think there's a difference between a memoir and the serious, rigorous factual history of a biography," he said. "Some of what he did was the result of mythologies that were passed along from his family, and some were for the purposes of advancing themes in his book which had more to do with finding his racial identity."

    New Zealand equestrians to ride in 7th Olympics

    Mark Todd and Andrew Nicholson will compete at their seventh Olympics after being placed on New Zealand's five-member equestrian team for the London Games on Wednesday.

    Todd won gold medals in the three-day event at the 1984 Los Angeles and 1988 Seoul Olympics. He has twice won world championships in the three-day team event and is a four-time winner of the Badminton Horse Trials and a five-time winner at Burghley.

    Nicholson won a silver medal in the three-day team event at the 1992 Barcelona Games and a bronze in the same event at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. He is also a former world champion in the team event.

    Lakers land Steve Nash for draft picks

    Steve Nash is headed to the Los Angeles Lakers after the Phoenix Suns agreed to a sign-and-trade deal that will bring them four draft picks.

    Steve Nash will get a guaranteed three-year, $27 million contract from the Lakers. (Getty Images)The Lakers will give Nash a three-year, $27 million contract. They used the trade exception they received from last year's Lamar Odom deal with the Dallas Mavericks.

    "He's ecstatic," said Billy Duffy, Nash's agent. "He gets to be close to his children."

    The Suns will get the Lakers' 2013 and '15 first-round draft picks and their 2014 and '15 second-round selections. The Lakers also paid the Suns $3 million to facilitate the trade.

    Phoenix radio station KTAR 620 first broke the news of the Suns' sign-and-trade agreement with the Lakers.

    Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash talked about playing together with Lakers on Monday night, and again late Wednesday afternoon, a league source told Y! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski.

    The New York Knicks, Toronto Raptors and Dallas Mavericks had all tried to sign Nash, but he turned down more money – three years and nearly $36 million from the Raptors – for an opportunity to chase a title with Bryant and the Lakers, and to be closer to his children. Nash is divorced with two daughters and a son.

    "His intention, as related to the Suns, was if he left that they would get value, that he would have the ability as his career was winding down to come to a competitive situation," Duffy said. "But his most important aspect was his ability to be close to his children. He's an hour from his children. I've never seen him happier because of that fact alone."

    Duffy said Nash briefly considered retiring at the end of last season.

    "Everything in his mind was predicated on his children," Duffy said. "It put me in an interesting situation because I knew that dynamic. It wasn't about the most money. He turned down a lot of money and aspects of other deals for the well being of his family."

    The Lakers were one of 10 teams to contact Nash on the first day of free agency, but the Knicks and Raptors appeared to be his most likely destinations. The Knicks also tried to work a sign-and-trade deal with the Suns.

    "He was either going to go to New York or Toronto," Duffy said. "He was comfortable with either situation."

    The Lakers stepped up their interest on Monday.

    "The dynamic with his family made [the Lakers] more compelling," Duffy said. "It began, really, two days because of the Lakers' willingness to step up and [Suns owner] Robert Sarver's willingness to work with us collectively to bring him back value. [Nash] could have gone to Toronto outright and the Suns got nothing. Steve likes this because he knows the Suns are getting assets back."

    Big Bay Boom indeed: San Diego fireworks go up all at once

    Those watching the Big Bay Boom in San Diego's Glorietta Bay witnessed what was either an accidental fireworks display -- or a very disappointing fireworks show.

    Port District authorities said a "technical difficulty" resulted in all the fireworks going off at once.

    About 5 minutes before the show was supposed to start, a sudden burst of fireworks shot into the air near the bay. Throughout downtown San Diego, a large rumble could be felt just before 9 p.m. on Wednesday night.

    See the original report at NBCSanDiego.com

    It appeared that hundreds of fireworks were set off at the same time. The explosions lasted a few seconds.

    At about 9:20 p.m., people waiting for the display were told to return home. The fireworks show was canceled, a radio announcement said.

    The Port hires the company Garden State Fireworks to operate the fireworks show. Calls to the company were not immediately returned.

    No injuries were reported.

    Here's a collection of responses from social media users who witnessed the seemingly botched display:

    Porn Star James Deen: I'm Not Having Sex With Lindsay Lohan

    Porn star James Deen might be known for his sexual abilities on-screen, but he isn't sharing his talents with his "The Canyons" co-star Lindsay Lohan off-screen -- or so he tells Animal New York.

    “I can definitely, honestly say Lindsay Lohan and I are not having sex!," he told the website, adding, "[If I was] I think I would tell everybody."

    The inevitable rumors about the two began as soon as they were photographed grabbing a smoke together outside a restaurant. And though Deen beds women for a living, he says things with Lohan are strictly professional.

    "I don’t know anything about her except for that she’s a really nice, down-to-earth, normal twenty-five-year-old girl," he told the magazine (for the record, Lohan turned 26 on July 2). "We went to a business dinner and she was very professional. She drank coffee and water. Then she had to call for a car because she couldn’t walk ten feet from the door because of the paparazzi.”

    Deen will play Lohan's boyfriend in Bret Easton Ellis' "The Canyons," and though there were reports the film would require graphic sex scenes between the two, Deen is quick to downplay the on-screen action.

    "It’s all necessary to the story. This is not an adult film. We are not trying to arouse people. If someone does get aroused, well, it happens. It’s like 'American Psycho,' 'Less Than Zero.'" he told the website, making reference to Ellis' other novels which have been turned into films. "It’s not graphic sex for the sake of graphic sex. In the script you don’t see anything like, ‘You see [Lindsay's character] turn around and flash her boobs!’”

    "The Canyons" is scheduled to start filming on July 9, and it will mark Deen's first foray into mainstream fare. Deen is taking the role seriously and told Animal New York he's enrolled in acting classes and will take a break from the adult industry while filming.

    "I will definitely take time off to do this. My intention is that from the day we start rehearsing to the day that the movie is wrapped, I will be giving this movie my full attention," he said, adding that he's never not working. “Uh, I don’t. I’ve never really gone without working. My life is pretty much a perpetual vacation, so I never felt the need to take time off. This will be the first time in eight years.”

    Higgs boson-like particle discovery claimed at LHC

    The particle has been the subject of a 45-year hunt to explain how matter attains its mass.

    Both of the Higgs boson-hunting experiments at the LHC see a level of certainty in their data worthy of a "discovery".

    More work will be needed to be certain that what they see is a Higgs, however.

    The results announced at Cern (European Organization for Nuclear Research), home of the LHC in Geneva, were met with loud applause and cheering.

    Prof Peter Higgs, after whom the particle is named, wiped a tear from his eye as the teams finished their presentations in the Cern auditorium.
    Continue reading the main story
    “Start Quote

        We're reaching into the fabric of the Universe at a level we've never done before”

    Prof Joe Incandela CMS spokesman

    "I would like to add my congratulations to everyone involved in this achievement," he added later.

    "It's really an incredible thing that it's happened in my lifetime."

    The CMS team claimed they had seen a "bump" in their data corresponding to a particle weighing in at 125.3 gigaelectronvolts (GeV) - about 133 times heavier than the proton at the heart of every atom.

    They claimed that by combining two data sets, they had attained a confidence level just at the "five-sigma" point - about a one-in-3.5 million chance that the signal they see would appear if there were no Higgs particle.

    However, a full combination of the CMS data brings that number just back to 4.9 sigma - a one-in-two million chance.

    Prof Joe Incandela, spokesman for the CMS, was unequivocal: "The results are preliminary but the five-sigma signal at around 125 GeV we're seeing is dramatic. This is indeed a new particle," he told the Geneva meeting.
    Peter Higgs Peter Higgs joined three of the six theoreticians who first predicted the Higgs at the conference

    Atlas results were even more promising, at a slightly higher mass: "We observe in our data clear signs of a new particle, at the level of five sigma, in the mass region around 126 GeV," said Dr Fabiola Gianotti, spokeswoman for the Atlas experiment at the LHC.

    Prof Rolf Heuer, director-general of Cern, commented: "As a layman I would now say I think we have it."

    "We have a discovery - we have observed a new particle consistent with a Higgs boson. But which one? That remains open.

    "It is a historic milestone but it is only the beginning."

    Commenting on the emotions of the scientists involved in the discovery, Prof Incandela said: "It didn't really hit me emotionally until today because we have to be so focussed… but I'm super-proud."

    Dr Gianotti echoed his thoughts, adding: "The last few days have been extremely intense, full of work, lots of emotions."
    Continue reading the main story
    Statistics of a 'discovery'
    Swiss franc coin

        Particle physics has an accepted definition for a discovery: a "five-sigma" (or five standard-deviation) level of certainty
        The number of sigmas measures how unlikely it is to get a certain experimental result as a matter of chance rather than due to a real effect
        Similarly, tossing a coin and getting a number of heads in a row may just be chance, rather than a sign of a "loaded" coin
        A "three-sigma" level represents about the same likelihood as tossing eight heads in a row
        Five sigma, on the other hand, would correspond to tossing more than 20 in a row
        Independent confirmation by other experiments turns five-sigma findings into accepted discoveries

    A confirmation that this is the Higgs boson would be one of the biggest scientific discoveries of the century; the hunt for the Higgs has been compared by some physicists to the Apollo programme that reached the Moon in the 1960s.

    The Lies You’re Told about Genetically Engineered Foods

    The Atlantici recently reported on the findings of new research into the claims made for the safety and efficacy of genetically engineered foods.

        The authors of the report GMO Myths and Truthsii took a science-based approach to evaluating the available research, and came to the conclusion that most of the scientific evidence regarding safety and increase yield potential do not support the claims made at all. In fact, the evidence demonstrates that the claims for genetically engineered foods are not just wildly overblown; they simply aren't true...

        The featured article summarizes the evidence presented, which shows that genetically engineered (GE) crops:

            Are laboratory-made, using technology that is totally different from natural breeding methods, and pose different risks from non-GE crops
            Can be toxic, allergenic or less nutritious than their natural counterparts
            Are not adequately regulated to ensure safety
            Do not increase yield potential
            Do not reduce pesticide use but increase it
            Create serious problems for farmers, including herbicide-tolerant "superweeds", compromised soil quality, and increased disease susceptibility in crops
            Have mixed economic effects
            Harm soil quality, disrupt ecosystems, and reduce biodiversity
            Do not offer effective solutions to climate change
            Are as energy-hungry as any other chemically-farmed crops
            Cannot solve the problem of world hunger but distract from its real causes - poverty, lack of access to food and, increasingly, lack of access to land to grow it on

        The authors of this critical report include Michael Antoniou, PhD, who heads the Gene Expression and Therapy Group at King's College at London School of Medicine in the UK. He's a 28-year veteran of genetic engineering technology who has himself invented a number of gene expression biotechnologies; as well as John Fagan, PhD, a leading authority on food sustainability, biosafety, and GMO testing.

        If you want to get an in-depth understanding of genetically engineered foods, I highly recommend reading their reportiii, which covers the ins-and-outs of genetic engineering and the disturbing findings of a large number of scientific studies.

    Actor Sohail’s driver knocks down aged woman

    Actor Sohail Khan's Lexus SUV mowed down a pavement dweller while she was crossing a road at Bandra (West) on Sunday night. According to initial reports, the alcohol test on the driver, Dhananjay Pimpale, was negative. Eyewitnesses confirmed that no member of the Khan family was in the vehicle when the woman, said to have been in her 70s, was crushed, police said.

    Pimpale, 46, surrendered around 1.30am and the police booked him for causing death by negligence. He was later produced before a court and freed on bail.

    Expressing "shock", Sohail said, "The news has been hyped up. Instead of focusing on who was in the car, people should focus on the fact that a woman has died. The accident happened by mistake."

    The driver reportedly left superstar Salman Khan's residence near Bandstand for his brother Sohail's Hill Road home around 11pm. He had driven around 100 metres when he realized that he had forgotten his tiffin box at Salman's residence. He took a sudden U-turn, crushing pavement dweller Chandanbala.

    'Driver saw some black plastic bag and did not know there was lady'

    Actor Sohail Khan's driver Dhananjay Pimpale reportedly did not stop to help an elderly woman after running over her near Bandstand on Sunday night. He instead sped away from the spot.

    Eyewitnesses said they had seen Pimpale behind the wheel and the vehicle had dragged Chandanbala a few metres before speeding away. Passersby took her to Bhabha Hospital, where doctors refused to treat her. She was left unattended near the hospital's mortuary, and breathed her last 30 minutes later.

    "The woman had come to live on the footpath near Salman's home only a week ago. She appeared to be suffering from some old age-related diseases. Her body was infested with worms, so people used to stay away from her," the security guard of a building near the accident spot said.

    Pimpale told police that he was unaware that he had crushed the woman and realized it only after people started screaming at him to stop. "He sped away fearing he would get beaten up," an officer said.

    Superstar Salman Khan sounded disturbed by the incident. He said, "First there was an accident on the Dabangg set, where three of my unit members were injured, and now this one. It makes me feel really sad." He said Sunday night's accident "happened by mistake. I spoke to the driver whom I consider a very responsible and careful person. He told me he saw some black plastic bag and did not know there was lady".

    The police said they had recorded statements of eyewitnesses, who said Pimpale was at the wheel of the vehicle. They have seized the vehicle for examination and asked for its documents for verification. The vehicle is registered in the name of actor Arbaaz Khan and his younger brother Sohail was using it.

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