LeBron on his hair: ‘I didn’t go bald, but I’m getting there’

LeBron James is back in the NBA Finals after the Cavaliers defeated the Celtics in Game five of the Eastern Conference Finals to win the series 4-1 on Thursday night.  King James did something else that was special yesterday in Boston. James surpassed Michael Jordan and became the all-time leading scorer in NBA Playoffs history. After the game, LeBron talked about how he emulated Michael Jordan growing up, and how he might emulate Jordan’s hair in the future:

“I did pretty much everything MJ did. I shot fadeaways, I wore a leg sleeve, I didn’t go bald, but I’m getting there.”

He might be there, in terms of the hair, sooner than later!

Take a listen:

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Lonzo Ball to workout for the 76ers?

After turning down a workout with the Celtics, Lonzo Ball might be working out with the Philadelphia 76ers, according to ESPN. Ball, who seems destined for the Lakers, probably does not fit in Philadelphia. The 76ers seemingly have their point guard in Ben Simmons. Ball and Simmons together does not work. Both are so-so shooters, and, essentially, play the same position.  Therefore, I do not see it happening. 

The 76ers have the third pick in the NBA Draft.

End of the day, expect Ball to be with the Lakers!

Rashad McCants to wear the ZO2s during BIG3 play

The number one overall pick in the BIG3 Draft is supporting the Big Baller Brand. Rashad McCants plans on wearing the ZO2s during BIG3 play. “I plan to wear those shoes (ZO2) during the BIG3 league. I support the brand a hundred percent, everything that he’s doing,” McCants told Paul Gant.  

“I’m not going to say I agree with everything he’s saying, but I know why he’s saying it. He has to get the world’s attention, and he has done just that. His son has done everything he’s needed to do as far as coming out and showing his skill, and his ability. Everything is right on track for them. They just need the support of their own people, to be honest. They just need the support, and everybody stop, you know, Stephen A. (Smith) and Shannon Sharpe, and all these guys talking crazy about what they like and don’t like about this guy,” said McCants. He’s a family man. He’s trying to make a brand for his family, and pave a way for his family. There’s roadblocks that you’re going to have to cross over to do that, and that’s pissing a lot of people off in the process. So, I’m with him because I piss people off on a regular basis. I know what that process is like.”

McCants tells why he believes African-Americans should support LaVar Ball:

You got Gucci, you got Louis (Vutton), you got Nike, you got LeBron, you got Kobe, you got Jordan, you got basketball jerseys, you got socks. When you go out for Christmas, and they buying stuff for their kids, it’s going to come out to four to five hundred dollars, maybe a thousand. People feel as if it’s too much. it’s too expensive, but everything we spend goes to other brands, goes to other cultures. So, why not spend with your own people? Why not support? Because ultimately, he is going to create a NIKE Jumpman brand, where the prices will go lower, and he will be able to expand, be able to marginalize, and be able to really take advantage of this type of market. I think that’s what people are lacking, that he’s a smart man, and he knows what he’s doing.  

McCants feels if African-Americans are going to spend above their means, they should spend it with LaVar Ball:

“That seems to be a habit of what we(African-Americans) do. We spend above our means for the sake of perception. So, if we’re going to do that, if we’re going to continue to do it, why not do it with our people?”

You agree with McCants?

The BIG3 starts June 25 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. 

Magic Johnson on LaVar Ball: ‘The Kardashians, we did not say the mom was bad’

Magic Johnson gave his support to LaVar Ball, and some of things he has done. Magic gave his thoughts on LaVar Ball to ESPN Radio’s Afternoons with Marcellus and Kelvin :

The Kardashians, we didn’t say the mom was bad, and she made them a lot of money, right? She bragged on her daughters. I think it’s the same here. He’s just saying, hey, my son is great, and there’s nothing bad with that. So, we’re not looking for LaVar to be a problem, if we’re blessed to have an opportunity to draft Lonzo. Again, we don’t know at this time if we’re going to do that or not, but I will say, you have to give the father a lot of credit for being in not just Lonzo’s life, but the other two sons as well. I’m happy that a father goes around and hey, says great things about his son. And also, two, it hasn’t bothered Lonzo, so that’s what we really have to look at.”

The more I hear Magic Johnson talk, the more I think Lonzo Ball won’t go past number two in the 2017 NBA Draft. However, maybe it’s a smoke screen. We’ll find out June 22.

Oscar De La Hoya rips Mayweather-McGregor

Do I want to see Mayweather-McGregor? No. However, I am intrigued enough to buy the fight. Oscar De La Hoya, who is the head of Golden Boy Promotions, hates the fight!

He wrote this on Facebook today:

To my fellow #boxing fans:

I write in the hopes that together we can protect the sport of boxing.

With each passing day, it looks more and more likely that the circus known as Floyd Mayweather Vs. Conor McGregor will be coming to town in the near future.

As undercard fights start to take form, athletic commissions give their blessings in exchange for millions of dollars and the fighters start counting even more cash, one group will eventually be left to make sure this farce doesn’t occur.

We, the fans, who are the lifeblood of our sport.

Boxing is starting to dig out of the hole that Floyd and Manny Pacquiao shoveled by waiting seven years to put on a fight that ended up being as dull as it was anti-climactic.

2017 has started off as a banner year for boxing. Joshua vs. Klitschko; Thurman vs. Garcia; Golovkin vs. Jacobs; Canelo vs. Chavez. All four of these fights – and many more — have brought the fight game back and reinvigorated interest from the ever-elusive casual fan.

But if you thought Mayweather/Pacquiao was a black eye for our sport – a matchup between two of the best pound-for-pound fighters that simply didn’t deliver — just wait until the best boxer of a generation dismantles someone who has never boxed competitively at any level – amateur or professional.

Our sport might not ever recover.

I fully understand the initial attraction from any fan of combat sports. McGregor is almost certainly the best pound-for-pound MMA fighter. Floyd is Floyd — the most dominant boxer of his time.

But success in one sport does not guarantee success in another. Far from it. And let’s be clear, these are two different sports — from the size of the gloves fighters wear, to the size and shape of the ring, to the fact the one sport allows combatants to use their legs to strike.

Think about it, beyond Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders, what other athlete has successfully competed in two sports in the modern age? And Jackson and Sanders both played both baseball and football throughout their high school and college careers before going professional.

Furthermore, it’s not like McGregor would be fighting a good fighter, let alone a mediocre one. He would be fighting the best. To use a bit of an extreme analogy, I happen to be a pretty good golfer. Could I potentially hold my own on one of the second-tier tours? Maybe. But would I be able to compete with Rory McIlroy, Jordan Speith or Sergio Garcia? Of course not. Nor would I think to try.

Now, I know critics will say that I’m only writing this letter because my company is promoting what will be the culmination of an outstanding boxing year when Canelo Alvarez takes on Gennady “GGG” Golovkin in September, and I don’t want anything to distract attention away from that fight.

But my interest is in the health of boxing as a whole. It always has been. And if Floyd were to come out of retirement to take on someone like Keith “One–time” Thurman, Errol Spence or some other top welterweight, not only would I applaud the fight, I’d be the first one on line for a ticket.

That kind of fight is what the fans – and I am a fan first — deserve.

Which brings me back to the circus.

Floyd’s and Conor’s motivation is clear. It’s money. In fact, they don’t even pretend it’s not. But it’s also a lack of consequences for when the fight ends up being the disaster that is predicted. After this fight, neither of them will need us anymore. Floyd will go back to retirement — presumably for good this time with another nine-figure paycheck — and Conor will go back to the UFC.

It’s a win-win for them. It’s a lose-lose for us. We’ll be $100 lighter and we will have squandered another opportunity to bring boxing back to its rightful place as the sport of kings.

At this point, only we can shut the circus down by making it clear that we won’t pay to see a joke of a fight and telling our casual-fan friends that they shouldn’t either.

Sincerely,

Oscar

IBF junior middleweight champ Jarrett Hurd looking to clean out 154

IBF junior middleweight champ Jarrett Hurd has been on the rise at 154. The rise culminated with a victory over Tony Harrison to win the IBF strap back in February.

Hurd is now looking to clean out 154. We caught with Hurd after the big fights at the MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Md on Saturday night. 

Hurd discussed what could be next for him, Gary Russell Jr., Andre Dirrell, Brook-Spence, and more! 

Take a listen:

 

Teddy Bridgewater making progress

According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Vikings QB Teddy Bridgewater had a good doctor’s visit, and now can move forward in rehab. Bridgewater will now be able to move side-to-side, according to Rapoport.

That is good news for the Vikings. Minnesota might be comfortable with Sam Bradford, but a healthy Bridgewater is an upgrade.

Bridgewater was seen on Tuesday throwing passes during OTAs, as he continues to recover from a dislocated his knee and torn ACL.

2018 Pro Bowl returns to Orlando

Following the success of its first year in Orlando, the PRO BOWL will return to Camping World Stadium on Sunday, January 28 at 3:00 PM ET, the NFL announced today. The game will be televised on ESPN and ESPN Deportes, and simulcast on ABC, marking the first time it will air on both broadcast and cable networks. It will also be streamed live on the ESPN app, and audio coverage will be available on Westwood One, SiriusXM NFL Radio, and on the TuneIn app.

For the second consecutive year, the NFL will host PRO BOWL WEEK festivities across the Orlando area, bringing new experiences and activities as well as an extraordinary number of events focused on commemorating all levels of football – from youth to high school to the NFL’s best. In addition, Pro Bowl players will again be able to invite their former youth or high school coach to be a part of the week’s celebrations.

“The Pro Bowl is not only a time to watch NFL greats compete live, but it is also a unique opportunity to inspire youth and the next generation of stars,” said PETER O’REILLY, NFL Senior Vice President of Events. “We received tremendous feedback from players, coaches, and fans about Orlando’s first Pro Bowl, and we are excited to build upon that enthusiasm with a week-long festival that celebrates the entire football community.”

The 2018 Pro Bowl will follow the traditional AFC versus NFC match-up, which returned last season, and feature 88 of the best NFL players – 44 from each conference – as determined by a consensus of votes by fans, players, and coaches. Both teams will be led by offensive and defensive NFL Legends who will serve as captains representing each conference.

Orlando will once more be home to the NFL FLAG CHAMPIONSHIPS POWERED BY USA FOOTBALL, the announcement of the prestigious DON SHULA NFL HIGH SCHOOL COACH OF THE YEAR AWARD and the annual USA FOOTBALL NATIONAL CONFERENCE, the largest congregation of youth and high school football administrators and coaches in the country.

“Hosting Orlando’s inaugural NFL Pro Bowl at Camping World Stadium earlier this year was not only fun, but it was a resounding success for our Central Florida community,” said Orlando Mayor BUDDY DYER. “We enthusiastically welcome our NFL partners back in 2018. Their confidence in our city’s ability to put on such a high-profile event underscores our reputation as one of the premier sports destinations in the U.S.”

“The TDT-funded improvements at Camping World Stadium have allowed us to compete for premier events like the 2018 Pro Bowl,” said Orange County Mayor TERESA JACOBS. “Not only are we looking forward to another great NFL football game – our second in a row – the Pro Bowl offers a full week of family and fan-friendly events and activities – a perfect match for our family-friendly tourism brand and a great fit for our local residents.”

“We are excited to bring Pro Bowl Week back to our community,” said Florida Citrus Sports CEO STEVE HOGAN. “This year’s sold-out game was a landmark moment for Orlando and our reputation as a preferred destination for world-class sporting events. We became an NFL city for a week last season and look forward to making the 2018 Pro Bowl bigger and better.”

Additional events during Pro Bowl Week are set to include the PRO BOWL SKILLS SHOWDOWN, testing the athletic prowess of All-Stars from each conference in unique competitions, and the NFL PRO BOWL EXPERIENCE, a free football festival located at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort.

Fans attending the Pro Bowl Experience will be closer to the action with new activities, immersive exhibits, and sponsor activations. Pro Bowl practices for the AFC and NFC teams will also be held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, allowing fans to watch their favorite players as they prepare for the game.

The NFL FOUNDATION will continue its longstanding Pro Bowl Grant Program and organize community events to benefit residents and the surrounding region. Last year, the NFL Foundation provided a Pro Bowl Grant to LIFT Orlando to fund the refurbishment of a multi-purpose “PLAY 60 Field” at Lake Lorna Doone Park. Through the Pro Bowl Grant Program, the NFL also remains committed to the Hawaiian community, awarding grants to youth-serving, Hawaii-based non-profit organizations.​

Robert Guerrero returns July 15 in Long Island

LONG ISLAND, NY (May 23, 2017) – A matchup between exciting former world champions Omar “El Panterita” Figueroa (26-0-1, 18 KOs)and Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero (33-5-1, 18 KOs)headlines an action-packed night of Premier Boxing Champions on FOX and FOX Deportes on Saturday, July 15 in the first boxing event at the newly-renovated NYCB LIVE, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Televised coverage begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT from the first boxing event at the Coliseum since Mike Tyson headlined in 1986.

“I’m looking forward to getting back in the ring and showing fans what I’m known for – exciting fights,” said Figueroa. “I’ve been quietly training and preparing in Indo, California with Joel Diaz and now it’s time. I’m looking forward to a great fight with Robert Guerrero on July 15 in front of a New York crowd. I can’t wait to show everyone at the Coliseum and on FOX and FOX Deportes what ‘Panterita’ is all about.”

“Both me and Omar Figueroa like to bang on the inside, which should make for great entertainment, but Omar is going to find out on July 15that he’s facing a man who has his back against the wall and is going to leave everything in the ring,” said Guerrero. “I’m going to give the millions who’ll be watching on FOX and FOX Deportes a fight to remember. This is going to be a classic Mexican war and I’m coming out on top.”

The FOX and FOX Deportes broadcast will see unbeaten contender”Sir” Marcus Browne (19-0, 14 KOs) battling undefeated Long Island native and fan favorite Seanie Monaghan (28-0, 17 KOs) in a light heavyweight showdown.

“I have fought more times at Barclays Center than anyone, so it’s exciting to get to fight in a new venue not too far from home,” said Browne. “We might be in Seanie’s immediate backyard, but I’m just down the block, so he really isn’t any more at home than I am. I know he’s a hard-nosed fighter with a come-forward style. I’m preparing for a tough opponent. A win won’t come easy, but we have to take care of business. I am just ready to display my talent on national television and continue my climb toward a world title.”

“It is a dream come true to be fighting at the Coliseum, which is literally right next to the track where I run every day,” said Monaghan. “It is an honor to represent Long Island in the first boxing event held at this venue in 31 years. I’ve been waiting for an opportunity like this for a long time, and I feel that this bout will bring a new chapter in my career. I have a lot of respect for Marcus Browne, but let the best man win. OnJuly 15, I am putting everything on the line.”

Also televised in prime time, Artur Szpilka (20-2, 15 KOs)meets Adam Kownacki (15-0, 12 KOs) in an all-Polish heavyweight showdown that promises fireworks.

“I can’t wait to get back in the ring and give my fans another exciting fight,” said Szpilka. “With two Polish heavyweights fighting, you know there will be power and pride on display. I’m training harder than ever to get this victory in front of the great Polish fans in New York. This will be my first step towards getting back to fighting for the heavyweight world title.”

“I can’t wait to fight again,” said Kownacki. “Most of my past fights were at Barclays Center, so fighting at the Coliseum will be a new and exciting experience. I am training very hard. A win on July 15 puts me one step closer to becoming a world champion. Szpilka will not stand in my way.”

 

“Boxing’s grand return to Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum is going to be wall-to-wall action,” said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment. “The PBC on FOX and FOX Deportes main event between Omar Figueroa and Robert Guerrero is destined to be a bloody slugfest. The co-featured bout between Staten Island’s light heavyweight contender Marcus Browne and Long Island’s undefeated ‘Irish Rocky’ Seanie Monaghan will bring the heat on a summer night in Long Island. While Marcus and Seanie will bring in a big local crowd, the heavyweight grudge match between Poland’s Artur ‘The Pin’ Szpilka and Polish American Long Islander, by way of Brooklyn, Adam ‘Baby Face’ Kownacki will pack the house with Polish fans. As a Long Islander, I am proud to promote the first fight card at Nassau Coliseum in 31 years. July 15 will be a fun, action-packed night of boxing entertainment from beginning to end; the remainder of the card will be stacked with old-school brawls including local talent.”

 

 

 

Twitter reaction to the death of Cortez Kennedy

Sad day in the NFL. Hall of Famer Cortez Kennedy died today in Orlando. He was 48. Many NFL greats showed a lot love to Kennedy today on Twitter.

Here is a sampling:

https://twitter.com/EmmittSmith22/status/867114109678080007