Archive for the 'nba' Category

No Love From Cavs, Kidd Fired From Bucks, #Please Stand Rejected By NFL

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All is not well in Cleveland. The Cavs have lost their last 10 of 14 games and are now 6 games behind the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference standings. Tensions are continuing to run high, and the latest victim is Kevin Love. Love left the game in their Saturday night loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder with a mysterious illness and missed Sunday’s practice. Cavs held a “loud and intense” team meeting on Monday to discuss Love and other issues.

In other NBA news, the Milwaukee Bucks fired former 10-time NBA All-Star Jason Kidd, but Kidd found out 15 minutes prior to the firing when he got a call from Giannis Antetokounmpo. The current All-Star called Kidd and said, “Coach, this isn’t right what they’re about to do, but [they] are gonna let you go,'” He then continued, “‘What can I do? I’ll call the owners, I’ll call my agent.” Kidd claims he holds no ill will toward the Bucks.

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AMVETS, known as American Veterans, is the largest veteran service organization. AMVETS submitted an ad to the NFL for placement in their Super Bowl program with the message “Please Stand”. The NFL rejected the ad (included here) and claimed it could be considered “a political statement”. Marion Polk, AMVETS national commander, wrote a letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell stating,  “Freedom of speech works both ways. We respect the rights of those who choose to protest as these rights are precisely what our members have fought — and in many cases died — for. But imposing corporate censorship to deny that same right to those veterans who have secured it for us all is reprehensible and totally beyond the pale.”

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Curry & LeBron NBA All-Star Captains, Joel Embiid’s Words To Rihanna, NBA All-Star Starters

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NBA All-Star votes are in and the Golden State Warriors Stephen Curry and the Cleveland Cavaliers LeBron James were named Captains of their respective conferences.  Players, fans and the media select the All-Star starters for the game in Los Angeles on February 18th. NBA Head coaches will select the reserves on Tuesday with the full rosters set by January 25th. The All-Star game the last few years has been an offensive scoring blowout, so this year to mix things up and make it more fun for the fans, the Captains (Curry and James) will select their teams regardless of the conference they’re in. With this new system, teammates might not be playing together and traditional rivalries will be gone.

One new selection this year is Philadelphia 76er Joel Embiid. After he heard he made the cut Thursday night, he celebrated by posting 26 points and 16 rebounds in a win over the Boston Celtics. After the game, his coach Brett Brown spoke about his excitement for Embiid by saying, it’s “like somebody just gave one of your children a star and put it on his paper. His story of perseverance is remarkable, and his story as it reflects the organization and the process that we’ve all been going through is a wonderful story. I’m just very proud of him.” In Embiid’s interview after the game, he was asked about the celebrity he’s had a crush on who blew him off 5 years ago. The woman was Rihanna, and according to Embiid she said to him,  “Come back when you’re an All-Star.”  So now he’s saying, “She denied me back then; there’s no reason to go back to her. So I gotta move on to the next one. There’s a lot of pretty women out there, and I’m beautiful, so I gotta move on to the next one.”

Here is a list of the other starters by conference:

Eastern Conference: Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo, Boston’s Kyrie Irving, Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid, and Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan

Western Conference: Houston’s James Harden, New Orleans Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins, and Golden State’s Kevin Durant

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Rockets Lose To Clippers And Push Into Locker Room, Warriors Overpower Cavs, Danica And Aaron Dating

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The Houston Rockets loss to the Los Angeles Clippers seemed to get personal when after the game, James Harden, Chris Paul and Trevor Ariza attempted to push their way into the Clippers’ locker room after the game. Security stopped the trio before any confrontations, but it appears the trio wanted to have some “words” with the Clippers’ Blake Griffin and Austin Rivers.  When asked about the potential incident, Clippers’ coach Doc Rivers said, “Let’s put it like this, our team was in our locker room. That’s all I’ll say. I’ll let you do the rest of the investigation. I will say their entire team was not in their locker room. You’re going to have to figure it out from there.” Clippers 113, Rockets 102.

The Golden State Warriors continued their road win streak (now 13 games) after defeating their rival, the Cleveland Cavaliers.  Kevin Durant posted 32 points while Steph Curry added another 23. Warriors 118, Cavs 108.

 

OTHER

Race car driver Danica Patrick confirmed she’s dating Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers recently broke up with actress Olivia Munn. Patrick and Rodgers met back in 2012 at the Espy Awards. Patrick is winding down her racing career and has announced her “Danica Double” which includes her finishing up at both the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500.

 

 

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Durant 2nd Youngest To Score 20,000 Points, Raiders May Have Violated Rooney Rule

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As the second youngest player to score 20,000 points in his career, Kevin Durant marked an impressive milestone. On Wednesday night right before halftime in a loss to the Clippers, Durant scored his 20,000th point. At 29 years old, Durant joins an elite group of players scoring 20k points before the age of 30. The list includes: LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Wilt Chamberlain and Michael Jordan.

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The group tasked with promoting minority rights in the NFL, the Fritz Pollard Alliance (FPA) is investigating whether the Oakland Raiders violated the Rooney Rule which requires NFL teams to interview minority candidates for head coaching positions. Raiders owner Mark Davis bragged about finalizing a deal with Jon Gruden back in December before the team interviewed any minority candidates. If the Raiders are found guilty of the violation, they will have to pay a big fine and could even lose a draft pick.

 

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Gerald Green Off Couch To Court, Brady/Kraft/Belichick Drama

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What a difference a few months makes! Gerald Green was cut by the Milwaukee Bucks in October and has been sitting at home, hanging out with his Rottweiler, Zeus. Last week he got the call from his hometown Houston Rockets to replace an injured Luc Mbah a Moute.  After a scoreless debut, he’s been on fire, and Thursday night against the Golden State Warriors, he knocked down 29 points including eight 3-pointers. Green was so excited to get the chance to play for his home-team, he even had the Rockets’ logo braided into his hair. Green expressing his excitement said, “You know what, man? I’ve been kind of thrown under the bus a few times in my career. So it’s not the first time I’ve seen that little area before. For me, what I did was just kept having faith in myself. Obviously, once it gets to be November and December and you still don’t get no calls, you either lay down or you fight. So I just continued to fight. God blessed me with this opportunity. Now I’ve just got to try to take advantage of it the best way that I can.” The Rockets see his potential as they announced they are guaranteeing his contract for the rest of the season. Unfortunately for the Rockets though, Green wasn’t enough to hold off the Warriors especially with the “other” Green (Draymond Green), who hit a franchise record 21st career triple-double. Warriors 124, Rockets 114.

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According to reports, there’s been some drama in New England between coach Bill Belichick, owner Robert Kraft and quarterback Tom Brady. It seems the disagreements started when Brady’s trainer and business partner Alex Guerrero pressured other players to use his training technique called TB12. Many players referred to the technique and its strict guidelines as a “cult”. The influence of Guerrero was just one issue affecting the trio. Other contributing factors was Brady’s future and getting rid of Brady’s backup, Jimmy Garoppolo (who was traded to the SF 49ers). For more on this story, click here.

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Thomas Returns To Boston And Fans Cheer, Ball Family Lands In Lithuania

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Boston fans love their players, even their former players as evidenced by the reception Isaiah Thomas received on Wednesday night when the the Celtics hosted their eastern conference rivals, the Cleveland Cavaliers. Thomas (and a few other players) were dealt to the Cavs last summer in exchange for Kyrie Irving. Thomas didn’t suit up for the game, as he’s still recovering from a hip injury, but the fans still gave him a standing ovation. Thomas was moved and said, “But [the fans] showed their true colors, like they always do, and that’s — I keep saying it, but it’s genuine love on both sides. The fans are everything here.” The game didn’t match the hype of the rivalry and the Celtics put the Cavs away with a 102-88 win.

The Ball family has started a new season of their “reality” show. Dad LaVar and 18 year old LiAngelo Ball and 16 year old LaMelo Ball landed in Lithuania to a swarm of reporters and curious spectators. Playing in this European League will be an interesting and potentially punishing experiment for the boys, as the League is very physical.

 

 

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Hall Of Fame 15 Finalists, Bills Giving Thanks To Dalton, Isaiah’s Debut

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The Pro Football Hall of Fame has named 15 finalists including 4 players on the list in their first year of eligibility: wide receiver Randy Moss, linebacker Ray Lewis, offensive guards Steve Hutchinson and Brian Urlacher. Wide receiver Terrell Owens is also back on the list for third time (didn’t make the final cut the last two years). The list will again be cut on February 3rd, the day before the Super Bowl, and anywhere from 4 to 8 inductees will be announced. An inductee needs to get at least 80% support of the voting board. The board is only required to vote on the inductees football contributions and not consider other factors.

The Buffalo Bills are showing their thanks to Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton for throwing the game winning touchdown against the Baltimore Ravens, knocking them out of the playoffs and putting the Bills in for the first time since 1999. Fans are pouring money into the Andy and Jordan Dalton Foundation, with many contributions coming in $17 increments (it’s been 17 years since the Bills have made the playoffs). As of Wednesday morning, the Foundation has raked in over $170,000. The Foundation works with Cincinnati hospitals to help children in need.

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Former Boston Celtic Isaiah Thomas made his long awaited season debut with the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night against the Portland Trailblazers.  Thomas suffered a hip injury last March and said he’s feeling great (scored 17 points in 19 minutes) but still needs to restrict his playing time, so unfortunately for anxious fans, he won’t be playing against his former team on Wednesday night. Cavs 127, Trailblazers 110.

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Beasley MVP Chants, LeBron Gets Candy For Daughter, McMahon Sells Shares

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The Knicks Michael Beasley was in beast mode Thursday night in a big win over the Boston Celtics. On a night when Knicks star Kristaps Porzingis was off (and really off….only 1 point), Beasley stepped up with 32 points and 12 rebounds. Fans were going crazy yelling MVP every time he stepped to the free-throw line. After the game, Beasley told the press, “I’m just here for the team. Whatever they need, whenever they need, scoring, rebounding, defense, trying my best.” Knicks 102, Celtics 93.

A mic’d up LeBron James provided some entertainment during the matchup against the Chicago Bulls on Thursday night. During the game, LeBron could be heard asking his 3-year old daughter if she wanted candy. They he kept asking around until he found her some candy so she would be happy while he played. A fun moment! Cavs 115, Bulls 112.

OTHER

Vince McMahon, Chairman and CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment, sold $100 million of his shares in WWE to  to fund a separate entity called Alpha Entertainment LLC which will look into “investment opportunities across the sports and entertainment landscapes, including professional football.” In 2001 McMahon invested in XFL, a professional football league, with NBC, but the league only lasted one year. It looks like McMahon might bring the league back.

 

 

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Kobe’s Jerseys Retired, ESPN President Stepping Down

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The Los Angeles Lakers celebrated their superstar Kobe Bryant by retiring both of his jersey numbers (8 and 24). Both jerseys will now hang in the Staples Center among all the other Laker greats. After the moving ceremony, Bryant watched his former team lose in overtime to the Golden State Warriors. The game went down to the wire, but the Warriors were without Steph Curry, Draymond Green, Zaza Pachulia, and Shaun Livingston, who were all out due to injuries. Warriors 116, Lakers 114.

OTHER

ESPN’s President John Skipper announced he’s stepping down from his job due to “substance addiction.” Skipper was also the co-chairman of the Disney media networks. Skipper joined ESPN in 1997 and was appointed President in 2012. Former President George Bodenheimer will take over on an interim basis.

 

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LeBron And Lonzo’s Matchup, Kerley’s Ghosts Of Christmas Past

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LeBron James wowed the crowd on Thursday night posting his 59th career triple-double against the Los Angeles Lakers.  The Lakers also had a solid night with 13 points, 11 assists and 8 rebounds from Lonzo Ball and a helpful 26 points from Brandon Ingram. Unfortunately for the LA,  that wasn’t enough to fend off the might Cleveland Cavaliers. The most talked about part of the game was after the buzzer when LeBron searched out Lonzo for a quick chat. LeBron pulled up his jersey so no one could understand what he was saying to the famous Ball brother, and both players refused to reveal the conversation in post-game interviews. Lonzo grew up idolizing LeBron, and LeBron seems to have taken a liking to the rookie.  To add intrigue, LeBron will be a free agent this summer and there’s talk of where he takes his talents next. Maybe to LA?

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In the category of “now we’ve heard it all”, New York Jets wide receiver Jeremy Kerley actually blamed failing a drug tests on ghosts (specifically ghosts of Christmas past). No joke, he said, ” I don’t know, a lot of ghosts around here. Ghost put it in. You know the ghost of Christmas past.”

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