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Mavericks Sign Jameer Nelson


Ronald Martinez/Getty Images(DALLAS) -- The Dallas Mavericks signed Jameer Nelson Thursday.

ESPN's Marc Stein reports it's a two-year deal with a player option to return to free agency next summer.

The 32-year-old Nelson was selected with the 20th overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft by the Denver Nuggets, but his draft rights were traded to the Orlando Magic, where he spent his entire 10 year career.

The 6-foot, 190-pound Nelson was waived by Orlando on June 30. The Magic will still pay Nelson $2 million this season, money due to Nelson from the final year of his contract with Orlando.

For his career, Nelson has averaged 12.6 points, 5.4 assists, and 3.1 rebounds per game.

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Obamacare “Creepy Care-nival" Opens on the National Mall


ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Some people have a fear of clowns, particularly creepy ones. Polls show millions of people still feel the same way about Obamacare. A cheeky “Creepy Care-nival” held on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. this week was intended to combine the two to show some of the aspects of the health care law that its critics find frightening.

The Creepy Care-nival featured knife-throwing jugglers, a house call from Dr. Grim Reaper, and a virtual death panel.

The ghoulish displays were created by Generation Opportunity, the Koch brothers-affiliated group that also produced the controversial “Creepy Uncle Sam” ads.

Tightrope walkers, acrobats, and clowns mingled with elected officials like Republican Reps. Paul Gosar of Arizona and Louie Gohmert of Texas.

Activities and refreshments had an Obamacare spin, and were “rigged against young people,” said Generation Opportunity president Evan Feinberg. The youngish crowd of tourists, Washington types, and curious joggers enjoyed ominous palm readings, an impossible coin toss, and basketball with a ball too big for the hoop. There were even Obamacare palm readings.

The event’s main attraction, a “creepy hospital,” took participants through a hospital run by “Dr. Grim Reaper.”

The tour ended in a room filled with signs listing infamous episodes in American public health history, including the forced lobotomization of World War II veterans recently detailed in the Wall Street Journal, and a mass sterilization program whose victims were awarded compensation in 2012.

Generation Opportunity spokesperson Corie Whalen Stephens denied that the exhibit implied a connection between Obamacare and the episodes.

Like Generation Opportunity’s campus tailgate tour last fall, the carnival will head across the country. It’s expected to stop in states like Colorado and Louisiana, where Democratic senators who voted for Obamacare are up for re-election.

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Police Probe Mysterious Porcelain Dolls Left in Front of Homes of Girls They Resemble


Orange County Sheriff's Department(SAN CLEMENTE, Calif.) -- Police are investigating a strange case in a California community, where porcelain dolls are being left on the doorsteps of girls to which they bear an eerie resemblance.

At least eight families have received the dolls in the Talega community of San Clemente, with all of the girls targeted around 10 years old.

Families began filing police reports about the dolls as early as June 16, but the mystery of their origin continues.

“It caught me by surprise,” Lt. Jeff Hallock from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department told ABC News. “It spun of control.”

“We’re trying to connect the families and the girls,” he added. “We’re trying to figure out if there is a correlation.”

Though some of the girls do attend the same school, some families don’t know each other, making it difficult for investigators to uncover who is leaving the dolls.

“The dolls were being left at these homes, but everybody thought they were the only one,” said Hallock. “When the families started communicating and put it together, they became concerned.”

Police are trying to figure out if the dolls were homemade or bought at a local retailer.

Though the situation may seem eerie, the police see no foul play.

“At this point we don’t have a specific crime,” Hallock said. “It’s very suspicious activity and we’re following up on it. We’re trying to find answers as we speak.”

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Tara Reid Really Believes a ‘Sharknado’ Could Happen


Paul Drinkwater/NBC(NEW YORK) -- Think Sharknado is just a fun, summer B-movie? Think again.

“You know, it actually can happen,” one of the stars, Tara Reid, who returns for Sharknado 2: The Second One, told GQ recently. “I mean, the chances of it happening are very rare, but it can happen, actually. Which is crazy. Not that it -- The chances of it are, like, you know, it’s like probably ‘pigs could fly.’ Like, I don’t think pigs could fly, but actually sharks could be stuck in tornados. There could be a sharknado.”

Whether or not you believe an actual shark storm could hit, SyFy drew about two million viewers last summer for its first made-for-TV schlock fest about sharks inside a tornado attacking Los Angeles.

The feeding frenzy returns July 30 with 90210 heartthrob Ian Ziering and a whole new cast of celebrity chum, including Vivica A. Fox, Mark McGrath, and Kari Wuhrer. This time, sharks attack New York City.

Just in case Reid is right, her celebrity co-stars chimed in with what to do in the case of an actual sharknado.

“The most terrifying tornado would be probably be full of lawyers,” Ziering told GQ, while recommending in that case the biggest, “chainsaw you can find and hope for the best.”

Fox, who wishes for an assist from Samuel L. Jackson because, “he’s been up with some snakes on a plane,” told GQ, ”Definitely go to the top of a roof, get some bombs, and make sure you have on an awesome, powerful wetsuit.”

McGrath’s advice: ”You have to stay calm, OK? Because everybody else is freaking out. And you have to be good friends with Ian Ziering. If you’re part of Ian’s group, you got a 50/50 chance of survival.”

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American Airlines Reports Record Quarterly Profit


Joe Raedle/Getty Images(FORTH WORTH, Texas) -- American Airlines reported record quarterly earnings Thursday, detailing a net profit of $1.5 billion -- a record for any quarter in company history, according to airline representatives.

The American Airlines Group announced a record GAAP net profit of $864  million, compared to $220 million in the second quarter of 2013, which was prior to its merger with US Airways.

 "We are very pleased to report the highest quarterly profit in the history of American Airlines," said Chairman and CEO Doug Parker. "Our merger is off to a great start and our 100,000 team members are doing a wonderful job working together to take care of our customers."

The company also publicized a capital deployment program aimed at reducing its debt and providing additional pension contributions, as well as returning capital to shareholders.

"The fact that we are able to implement this program while still funding our significant product improvements, fleet renewal program and integration costs is further evidence of the success of our merger," Parker added. "We have much hard work ahead, but we are extremely encouraged by the great work being done by our team members."

Other airlines also shared in the wealth, as United Airlines announced a nearly $800 million profit for its second quarter. Delta, JetBlue, and Southwest also reported strong gains.

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EU Approves More Sanctions Over Ukraine Crisis


iStock/Thinkstock(BRUSSELS, Belgium) -- The European Union approved further sanctions linked to the crisis in Ukraine, adding more Ukranian and Russian individuals and entities to its list Thursday.

The Council's Committee of Permanent Representatives implemented further restrictions as a result of the annexation of Crimea. The subjects of the prohibitions will have their assets frozen and undergo a visa ban.

The individuals and entities added follow 72 people already listed under EU sanctions.

"The meeting also reached agreement on extending the designation criteria," representatives said in a statement. "This will pave the way for imposing asset freezes and visa bans on persons and entities that actively support or are benefiting from Russian decision makers responsible for the annexation of Crimea or the destabilisation of Eastern Ukraine."

In addition to sanctions, the group discussed additional measures to restrict trade with and investment in Crimea and Sevastopol.

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Agency Releases First Data from National ALS Registry


iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- An estimated four in 100,000 people in the United States live with Amyotriphic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, health officials announced Thursday.

Researchers released the first data summary from the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, providing the only known data identifying all ALS cases among patients in the nation.

The disease, which has no cure, causes nerve cells throughout the body to stop working, which leads to paralysis and at times, death within two to five years of diagnosis.

Based on findings from October 2010 through December 2011, a total of 12,187 people were found to have ALS, and the disease was discovered to be more common among whites, men, non-Hispanics, and people between the ages of 60 and 69.

White men and women were twice as likely to have ALS compared to black men and women, and males in general had a higher rate of the disease than females across all racial groups.

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