Archive for July, 2020

A-Rod/J-Lo Take Tour With Krafts In Mets Bid, Sexual Harassment Claims In Washington, NABC Proposes Eliminating SAT/ACT

BASEBALL

Alex Rodriguez and Jennifer Lopez are still actively pursuing purchasing the Mets. According to reports, A-Rod, J-Lo, and a group of bankers flew to Foxborough to meet Bob and Jonathan Kraft (owners of the New England Patriots) to discuss a partnership on stadium operations for Citi Field and Willets Point (a development around the ballpark). The Krafts toured the duo around the stadium and the adjoining entertainment complex near the field. The potential owners are interested in turning Willets Point into a destination entertainment area where they can leverage J-Lo’s brand to book concerts.

FOOTBALL

The Washington Post published a damaging report on the Washington NFL team (formerly the Redskins). Fifteen former female employees claimed to have experienced sexual harassment and a toxic work environment.  The allegations span from 2006-2019 and include specific examples of harassment such as sexual text messages and male employees looking up female employees’ skirts.

New head coach Ron Rivera put out a statement saying, “Biggest thing is we have to move forward from this and make sure everybody understands we have policies that we will follow and that we have an open door policy with no retribution. Plus my daughter works for the team and I sure as hell am not going to allow any of this!”

BASKETBALL

The National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) proposed eliminating the SAT and ACT requirements for NCAA eligibility. The proposal originated in the NABC’s Committee on Racial Reconciliation to address racism and social justice issues. The statement reads, “The NABC Committee on Racial Reconciliation believes that the SAT and ACT are longstanding forces of institutional racism and no longer have a place in intercollegiate athletics or higher education at large. This is an important step towards combating educational inequality in our country.”

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Garrett $125 Mill Extension, Beer Pong causing Post Malone’s Tattoos, Tommy Tuberville Wins Primary, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar On Anti-Semitism

FOOTBALL

Myles Garrett and the Cleveland Browns are close to finalizing a five-year $125 million extension making him the highest-paid quarterback in the NFL.

Rapper Post Malone has a tattoo of Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes and tight end Travis Kelce’s signatures. Mahomes told GQ magazine that after the Chiefs beat the Niners in the Super Bowl, Mahomes and Kelce got VIP tickets to a Post Malone concert. Before the concert, the two Super Bowl champs were invited backstage to play some beer pong. After continuing to lose, Post upped the ante and said he’d get their autographs tattooed on his body if he couldn’t win. Mahomes and Kelce tried to talk him out of it, but he went through with the bet.

Former Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville defeated Jeff Sessions in the Republican primary for the Alabama US Senate seat. He will now face incumbent Senator Doug Jones (D) in November.

OTHER

Former LA Laker superstar Kareem Abdul-Jabbar wrote in his column for The Hollywood Reporter “Where is the Outrage Over Anti-Semitism in Sports and Hollywood” and called out the anti-Semitic comments of DeSean Jackson, Stephen Jackson, and Ice Cube.  He wrote, “It’s a very troubling omen for the future of the Black Lives Matter movement, but so too is the shocking lack of massive indignation. Given the New Woke-fulness in Hollywood and the sports world, we expected more passionate public outrage. What we got was a shrug of meh-rage.” Abdul-Jabbar quoted Martin Luther King Jr. explaining, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality.” He ended with, “So, let’s act like it. If we’re going to be outraged by injustice, let’s be outraged by injustice against anyone.”

 

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Washington Red Tails Odds On Favorites, 2 NBA Players Flout Bubble Rules

FOOTBALL

The Washington Redskins officially announced they will change their name for the 2021 season. Oddsmakers are getting in on the action and taking bets on the new franchise nickname. As of now, the Redtails is the favorite at 3/1 odds. The National Office for Tuskegee Airmen Incorporated, the office for the military aviation group called the Tuskegee Airmen, who were the first Black aviators in the U.S. Army Air Corps and helped desegregate the military, weighed in. Nicknamed the “Red Tails” because they painted the tails of their planes crimson, the group was known for their heroics in World War II.  The organization offered up a statement saying, “If the Washington D.C. NFL franchise chooses to rename themselves as the Washington Red Tails, it would honor the Tuskegee Airmen legacy and be symbolic for all of America.“

After Redtails, the Washington Generals are at 4/1 odds with the Washington Presidents at 5/1 odds.

BASKETBALL

NBA players are entertaining us with stories of quarantining in the Disney Bubble in Orlando in anticipation of the season resuming on July 30th, but two players (Houston Rockets forward Bruno Caboclo and Sacramento Kings center Richaun Holmes) flouted the rules and will now have a longer quarantine period. Part of the protocol required players to quarantine in their rooms for 48 hours after arriving at their hotels. After 48 hours, players could roam the bubble grounds, but if they left the site, they would have to immediately quarantine again. Caboclo vacated his room during the 48-hour window, while Holmes left the bubble to get food delivery.

 

 

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Washington Definitely Changing Name, ESPN Suspended Wojo For Profane Email To Senator, Embiid In HAZMAT Suit

FOOTBALL

Washington owner Daniel Snyder will announce he is officially changing the team’s name. “Redskins” and any other Native American imagery will no longer appear in any part of the organization. There is no word yet on the team’s new name and logo.

BASKETBALL

ESPN suspended popular reporter Adrian Wojnarowski for a profane two-word email he sent to Senator Josh Hawley (R-Missouri) in response to a letter Hawley wrote a letter to NBA commissioner Adam Silver. The letter urged the league to allow (in addition to other pro-approved messages in support of racial equality and social justice) messages in support of police, the military, and Hong Kong protesters on player jerseys. Wojnarowski took to social media and said “F%* You”. ESPN called his behavior “unacceptable”, but many NBA players are taking his side. LeBron James even showed his solidarity by tweeting the hashtag #FreWOJ”.

In other NBA news, players are tweeting about life inside the Disney Bubble. Some are enjoying playing golf, visiting the Disney attractions after hours, and fishing, while many are complaining about the food and the sparse accommodations. The Philadelphia 76ers Joel Embiid immediately donned a HAZMAT suit on arrival in Orlando and then complained about the food saying he is “definitely losing 50 pounds”.

 

 

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Steve Cohen Submits $2 Bill Bid For Mets, Big Ten Announces Conference Only Fall Sports

BASEBALL

Hedge fund mogul Steve Cohen is still in the mix to buy the New York Mets. First-round bids were due this week, and according to Fox Business report, Cohen offered $2 billion for the team and an additional $2 billion to acquire the SportsNet New York (SNY) network. Alex Rodriguez and Jennifer Lopez also made a bid for $1.7 billion. Philadelphia 76ers and New Jersey Devils owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer are still reportedly in the mix as well.

FOOTBALL

The Big Ten announced it will move all fall sports to a conference-only schedule. All Power 5 conferences could follow their lead, which would result in only regional sports (including football) for the fall season. The Big Ten statement said, “We are facing uncertain and unprecedented times, and the health, safety and wellness of our student-athletes, coaches, game officials, and others associated with our sports programs and campuses remain our number one priority…. By limiting competition to other Big Ten institutions, the Conference will have the greatest flexibility to adjust its own operations throughout the season and make quick decisions in real-time based on the most current evolving medical advice and the fluid nature of the pandemic.”

 

 

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Ivy League Shuts Fall Athletics, Stanford Permanently Cancels 11 Sports, Ohio State/N.Carolina Pause Workouts, NFL Allows Opt Out

COLLEGE SPORTS

The Ivy League announced it is shutting down all athletics this fall due to the coronavirus pandemic. There is no decision yet on what the “Power Five” schools will do, especially considering these schools generate significant football revenue. The Power Five consists of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Big Ten Conference, Big 12 Conference, Pac-12 Conference, and the Southeastern Conference (SEC). For comparison, in 2019 the Ivy League generated approximately $30 million in football revenue, while the Big Ten generated $1 billion in revenue.

Stanford University announced it is permanently cutting 11 of its 36 varsity sports due to COVID-19 related deficits. The sports affected are field hockey, lightweight rowing, men’s rowing, squash, co-ed and women’s sailing, men’s and women’s fencing, synchronized swimming, men’s volleyball, and wrestling.

Ohio State will pause all voluntary athletic workouts (including football) due to many athletes testing positive for COVID-19. North Carolina also paused voluntary football workouts when 37 COVID-19 tests came back positive.

NFL

The NFL and NFLPA (National Football League Players Association) agreed to allow players to sit out the 2020 season if they have concerns related to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Golic Gone From ESPN, WNBA Dedicates Season To BLM, Senator Loeffler Possible Sanction, MLS Back, Pigeon Racing

ESPN

ESPN is canceling its morning program, “Golic & Wingo” in addition to other programming changes to the network. Mike Golic and Mike Greenberg spent 17 years together co-hosting the iconic “Mike and Mike” morning program, but three years ago Greenberg branched out to anchor another ESPN morning program, “Get Up”. Greenberg will continue to anchor this show while also hosting a new two-hour radio show from 12-2 pm ET. From the tributes pouring in on social media, it appears Golic will be retiring from broadcasting. In another line-up change, WNBA All-Star Chiney Ogwumike will join Mike Golic Jr. (Mike’s son) between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. The changes go into effect on August 17th.

WNBA

The league announced it would dedicate the 2020 season to “victims of police brutality and racial violence”, with players wearing warmup jerseys saying “Black Lives Matter” on the front with “Say Her Name” on the back.

Senator Kelly Loeffler from Georgia and co-owner of the Atlanta Dream urged the WNBA to consider having an American flag on the warmup jerseys instead, saying “the move undermines the potential of the sport and sends a message of exclusion.” She went on to say, “The truth is, we need less — not more politics in sports. … In a time when polarizing politics is as divisive as ever, sports has the power to be a unifying antidote. And now more than ever, we should be united in our goal to remove politics from sports.” A group of players has asked the league to sanction Loeffler for her remarks.

MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER

The 2020 MLS is Back Tournament begins today in Orlando.

PIGEON RACING

Yes, pigeon racing (watching trained pigeons fly back to their homes) is apparently a sport and, as of last month, is the first “sport” to return to England.

 

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Mahomes Monstrous Contract, DeSean Jackson’s Anti-Semitic Social Media Posts

FOOTBALL

The Kansas City Chiefs signed Super Bowl-winning quarterback (and MVP) Patrick Mahomes to a monstrous 10-year contract extension worth up to $503 million, with an injury guarantee of $141.8 million. Mahomes will make an average salary of $45 million per year dwarfing Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson’s annual average of $35 million per year. Mahomes’s contract is the richest contract in the history of pro sports.

Philadelphia Eagles receiver DeSean Jackson posted anti-Semitic messages on social media with quotes attributed to Adolf Hitler and Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan. The quote attributed to Hitler read,  “[white Jews] will blackmail America. [They] will extort America, their plan for world domination won’t work if the Negroes know who they were.” He also expressed his admiration for Louis Farrakhan, who is widely known as an anti-Semite. The Eagles owner and general manager are both Jewish, but the team has not publicly commented on the posts.

 

 

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Joey Chestnut, Miki Sudo Set World Records At Nathan’s Famous, Name Changes: Redskins Likely, Indians A Possibility, Braves No

COMPETITIVE EATING

Joey Chestnut and Miki Sudo crushed the competition again at the Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog-Eating Contest. At 36 years old Chestnut, a former construction manager from San Jose, CA, beat his own world record by eating 75 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes (around 21,750 calories). To say Chestnut dominated his competition is an understatement. He consumed an astonishing 33 more hot dogs and buns than the second-place finisher. This is Chestnut’s 13th Mustard Yellow Belt in 14 years.

Sudo also set a world record in the women’s division by eating 48.5 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes for her seventh consecutive win at this event. Sudo also dominated her competition by consuming 32.5 more hot dogs and buns than her closest competitor.

In addition to the Mustard Yellow Belt, both Chestnut and Sudo pocketed $10,000 with the win.

FOOTBALL

In 2013, Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder said “We’ll never change the name….It’s that simple NEVER-you can use all caps.” As of this past weekend, it looks like Snyder is changing his mind, and the NFL franchise will have a new name before the start of the NFL season.

BASEBALL

The Cleveland Indians are also now considering a name change. In an official tweet from the team, they said,  “[W]e are committed to engaging our community and appropriate stakeholders to determine the best path forward with regard to our team name.”

The Atlanta Braves say they are not considering a name change. They said, “[The organization] honors, supports and values the Native American community. That will never change.”

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“Lift Ev’ry Voice And Sing” At All NFL Week 1 Games, Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating, Kasparov Criticizes NBA

FOOTBALL

The NFL is discussing having the Black National Anthem, “Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing,” performed live or pre-recorded prior to “The Star Spangled Banner” at each of the week 1 games this season. “Lift Ev‘ray Voice and Sing” written as a poem by James Weldon Johnson was later turned into a song by his brother J. Rosamond Johnson.

COMPETITIVE EATING

Thankfully, Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest will provide some live sports over the 4th of July holiday weekend. This iconic event normally takes place in Coney Island, NY but will be held indoors (with no fans) for the first time in its history.  Joey Chestnut, who traditionally dominates in this sport, will be looking to capture his 13th Mustard Yellow Belt and his fourth straight win. His world record is 73.5 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes.

BASKETBALL

Chess grand master and human rights activist, Garry Kasparov, criticized the NBA and Commissioner Adam Silver for not standing up to human rights violations carried out by the Chinese Communist Party against the Uyghur population. Kasparov responded to Silver’s comment saying, “NBA-China relations have improved…they have a different view how things have been done, how things should be done. And hopefully, we can find mutual respect for each other.” Kasparov tweeted, “The NBA’s concern for human rights stops right at the bank, China has Uyghur concentration camps and is preparing to crush Hong Kong and he talks of ‘mutual respect’? What a joke.”

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