#SportBits … A White House Tradition In Jeopardy

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There’s a longstanding tradition in this country of championship teams visiting the White House. But that tradition may be in jeopardy.

With more players opting out of the ceremonial visit, it’s almost become more of who doesn’t come, rather than who does.

According to Thomas Nuemann of ESPN, the tradition of sporting teams visiting the White House dates back to Aug. 30, 1865, when President Andrew Johnson welcomed the Brooklyn Atlantics and Washington Nationals amateur baseball clubs. John F. Kennedy was the first president to host the NBA champions, when the Boston Celtics visited in January 1963.

It is an honor, no doubt. But today, champions have to search their souls as to whether the honor is worth it.

UCONN women’s basketball coach Geno Auriemma and his lady Huskies have visited so many times that former President Obama joked Auriemma had his own room. Recently, Auriemma was asked if the Huskies win their 12th title this year, would his team attend the White House ceremony?

“The fact that in all the 11 championships I’ve never been asked this question says something about where we are as a country,” Auriemma said. “Forget the answer. The fact that I’ve never been asked means there’s something going on that isn’t normal.”

Well, he’s got that right.

It’s not unheard of for athletes to skip the customary visit. Many have opted out but avoided controversy by saying their decision was based on other factors such as family commitments or scheduling conflicts.

But not in today’s political climate, where, thanks to the power of social media, athletes have been very vocal about their views.

So, it’s not surprising that athletes are struggling with the possibility of a White house visit and speaking out as to why. Six players from the Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots have said they are not going – five of whom say it’s because they do not feel welcome.

Mr. Auriemma said he is not sure what he’ll do if the team wins and his players object to a White House visit.

“What are you going to do as a coach?” he continued. “It’s not like I can look it up and go, ‘What did other people do?’ We’re in a world that very few of us could have conceived five years ago.”

Strange times indeed. Players are being praised on social media for speaking out while others are being pressured if they don’t.

If this trend of declining White House visits continues, it will be a PR problem for the leagues, teams, and the White House – so what should they do? Invite only a selected few (those who actually want to attend) to represent their team? This way, those who don’t want to go do not have to publicly “skip” the event.

Nope. I don’t like it. I want my sports figures to be socially active and speaking their minds. The PR folks will just have to figure it out.

What about you? What do you think?

#SportBits

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#SportBits . . .Weekend WrapUp

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Happy Monday #SportBits readers! There is a lot of sports news to discuss so let’s get right to it.

There are now six New England Patriot players refusing to go to the White House for the Super Bowl celebration and perfunctory meeting with POTUS with pressure mounting on more to join.

Martellus Bennet started it all by saying before the Super Bowl that he wouldn’t go if the Patriots won. He reiterated those sentiments shortly after they defeated the Falcons.

The next day safety Devin McCourt joined Bennett saying he would not attend because he “doesn’t feel accepted in the White House.”

Soon Dont’a Hightower, LeGarrette Blount and Chris Long said they would not attend either. Long, the only white player in the group went on to say there is a “pathetic sea of NFL white silence this year.”

Fans are ramping up pressure through social media urging team members to boycott and expressing support for those who won’t attend.

FYI: Tom Brady skipped the post-Super Bowl visit in 2015 while Barack Obama was president citing a “prior family commitment.” He was seen less than 24hrs later at an Apple store shopping for watches. Brady did attend all three times during George W Bush years.

More sports and politics to report with Steph Curry openly questioning Kevin Plank and his association with President Trump.

575ae5a51500002b00739e30Kevin Plank is the CEO of Under Amour and Steph Curry is their superstar client. Curry’s signing by Under Armor put them on the map in the sports apparel industry and was a huge coup over main rival Nike. Curry is probably the most popular endorser of Under Armor apparel. Even those grandpa-looking shoes were a bestseller.

But when Plank praised Trump as an “asset to the country,” Curry took to twitter .

Curry responded with “I agree with that description,” Curry said, “If you remove the ‘et’” from asset.”

Curry then followed up his tweet with daylong discussions with Under Armour reps and Kevin Plank himself who explained that his views were meant from a business perspective and not political. Plank tried to distance himself from Trump’s controversial policies and comments that have enraged women, Muslims, Mexicans, African-Americans and the poor and impoverished across the nation. Curry felt comfortable with the explanation.

To me, it was an positive example of how open and honest communication can solve problems and misunderstanding during this volatile time.

The same can not be said for the situation in New York where team President Phil Jackson has taken to the media to shame and humiliate his star player, Carmelo Anthony. Whether it’s in an online article stating that Anthony holds the ball too long, or his comparison via twitter of Anthony to a failed ex-NBA player – Jackson’s choice of communication and follow through is not the way to solve problems or misunderstandings – and doesn’t feel very zen-like to me.

More news from Knickland: Former Knick legend Charles Oakley got into a scuffle before the Clipper game last week and was escorted out of Madison Square Garden and arrested. Oakley was allegedly sparring with Knick Owner James Dolan over being left out of recent Knick activities. Dolan’s actions have backfired as fans have taken to social media in support of Oakley and have been chanting his name at home games.

PEOPLE ARE FEELING EMPOWERED TO SPEAK THEIR MINDS THESE DAYS AND I LIKE IT!

On to the NBA..where the OKC Thunder fans were speaking their minds Saturday night.

The big game that had everyone talking was the Golden State Warriors v. Oklahoma City Thunder on Saturday. It was the long-awaited return of Kevin Durant to OKC – a place he had spent all previous eight seasons before joining their biggest rivals, the Warriors.

Duran hired extra security for what was an emotionally charged and explosive scene at Chesapeake Energy Arena. He was booed as he entered the arena, as he was introduced and every time he touched the ball. His mom said later she was hurt by the treatment she and her son received on Saturday night.

“The most vicious things you could say, they said about my son tonight. It’s hurtful. We poured our heart into this place. Not just him. Our family. This is basketball. This is not whether or not you’re going to make it into heaven.” ~ Wanda Durant

But the game didn’t really live up to the hype as the Warriors defeated the Thunder 130-114. Durant scored 34 points and Russell Westbrook had 47 for the Thunder.

OK, TIME TO TUNE INTO COLLEGE HOOPS PEOPLE.

March Madness is right around the corner. The tournament begins March 14th and concludes the final four weekend, April 1 and April 3rd. Sixty-eight teams are chosen: 32 Division I conference champions and 36 at-large bids.

So, pick your team now and start following because in a couple weeks that’s all we’ll be talking about. #prepper

In women’s basketball, the No.1 UCONN women’s team looks to extend their winning streak to 100 v. No.6 South Carolina tonight in Storrs, CT. The Huskies last loss came early in the 2014-15 season against then No. 6 Stanford. THAT IS ONE HELLUVA STAT! I’m not a UCONN fan but I’m rooting for them to hit 100.

Lastly:

Jordan Spieth won at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am over the weekend. This was his 9th PGA tour title. Tiger Woods has pulled out of the Genesis Open in Los Angeles this week citing back spasms.

9bb6611d3ae470f21ae0b62f232ed5c4.jpgAt UFC208 in Brooklyn on Saturday, Germaine de Randamie defeated MMA fighter Holly Holm for the inaugural featherweight title. There was some controversy surrounding the fight when after the second round horn sounded, de Randamie continued to throw punches, landing what many considered the best strike of the night that seemed to wobble Holm as she walked back to her corner. Despite complaints, the ref did not warn de Randamie or take a point. de Randamie has agreed to a rematch because of the controversy.

That’s it for now. Check back on mcsportbits.com for more sports stories, scores and highlights and make sure to follow on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for breaking news!!

#SportBits … a little bit of info is all you need.

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How will Trump’s immigration ban affect sports?

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Many in the sports world are trying to figure out how President Donald Trump’s ban on immigration will affect their respective sports.

The executive order blocks entry into the United States from seven predominantly Muslim Nations – Syria, Yemen, Libya, Iran, Iraq, Somalia, and Sudan – for 90 days.

It also suspends the entry of all refugees for 120 days and bars Syrian refugees indefinitely.

Over the weekend, sports officials sought to understand the implications of the President’s ban, and whether athletes from the prohibited nations could enter the U.S to compete, especially in the initial 90-day period.

The NBA has already contacted the U.S. Department of State in an effort to deduce how the ban might affect player travel.

“We have reached out to the State Department and are in the process of gathering information to understand how this executive order would apply to players in out league who are from one of the impacted countries” NBA spokesman Mike Bass said. “The NBA is a global league and we are proud to attract the best best players from around the world.”

(Can I just mention how much I appreciate both the NBA and WNBA for their consistent fight for equality and inclusion and their willingness to stand up for civil rights and social issues?)

Here in Los Angeles, Laker forward Luol Deng finds himself at the center of this mess.

Deng was born in Sudan (now called South Sudan) and fled before the country split in 2011. As noted, Sudan is one of the countries whose inhabitants have been banned from entering the US for three months.

Deng managed to escape the country’s Civil War and travel to Egypt with his father, finally finding asylum in the United Kingdom.

But his is a dual citizen and his British passport do not guarantee re-entry into the US.

Under Trump’s executive order, dual citizens are at risk of being detained and deported upon their return.

Basically, no one knows what the hell is going on.

Meanwhile, the #LA2024 Bid Committee, led by Chairman Casey Wasserman, CEO Gene Sykes, and Mayor Eric Garcetti, is wondering what impact he ban will have on their effects to bring the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games to the city of Los Angeles.

Mayor Garcetti has been very vocal regarding his stance against Trump’s immigration orders. He has let it be known that Los Angeles will continue to accommodate all refugees.

“Los Angeles will always be a place of refuge, where the most vulnerable people fleeing war, or religious political oppression, can find a safe and welcoming home,” Garcetti said.

The International Olympic Committee will meet on September 13th in Lima, Peru, to choose the host city and this immigration ban has no doubt thrown a wrench into LA’s bid.

Richard Perkin, a member of the IOC who will be voting in September for the 2024 host city posted his concern via Twitter that the actions of the President may cause our city to lose out in the bidding.

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The stakes are high for athletes and the city of Los Angeles regarding Trump’s new regulation restricting access to America.

And the frustrating part is, we have no idea how this is going to play out or how we should prepare.

Stay tuned.

#SportBits

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#SportBits … Weekend WrapUp

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Happy Monday, #SportBits readers!

Here is your weekend sports wrap up.

In what felt more vintage than a 79’ Dead shirt, the Australian Open men’s and women’s final gave everyone the #goodfeels.

I can’t tell you how many texts and comments on my social media I received from people expressing how happy the finals made them feel. Four legends of tennis back in the championships.

I think after a month of crazy political upheaval and uncertainty, having these four familiar players in the finals felt reassuring and safe. I LOVE how sports can do that.

The Williams sisters met for the 28th time for the women’s championship.

Venus, at age 36, is at a stage in her career where she seems to be playing for the pure joy of it. She’s already made her mark. She’s got nothing more to prove.

She could have retired after she fell out of the top one hundred in 2012, or when she was diagnosed with a debilitating autoimmune disease. But she didn’t. She battled back. She had faith in herself and her game. #goodfeels

Sister Serena, at age 35, is playing for the numbers. She’s been tied with Steffi Graf at #22 Grand Slam totals which has been an annoying monkey on her back.

Their match was a competitive, awesome display of tennis. Serena won 6-4, 6-4 and not only breaks the tie with Graf, but regains the #1 ranking she lost to Angelique Kerber in September of last year.

I think the best part was their speeches afterward. #goodfeels galore.

On the men’s side, 35-year-old Roger Federer took on 30-year-old Rafael Nadal. These two have played each other 35 times. Sunday’s final was another epic showdown.

Roger, having missed the second half of last season with a knee injury, came back in Federer style by winning the championship in 5 sets. He was down a break in the 5th but somehow found the magic and extended his Grand Slam victories to 18.

Rafa also battled injuries last season with wrist problems. I think I wasn’t alone in wondering if he could return to his top form. He did.

Ultimately, I think his 5-hour semifinal win over Gregor Dimitrov on Thursday took too much out of him.

Never the less, it was a wonderful weekend of tennis, the likes of which we may never see again.

On the NFL Pro Bowl….

The AFC took this one, 20-13, over the NFC. The game was played in Orlando, Florida, instead of its usual Hawaiian destination.

The game wasn’t a TOTAL snooze fest, but it still was the Pro Bowl – where players are playing to NOT get hurt in a game that doesn’t matter one bit.

Maybe this one was a bit more interesting because it had so many newcomers. They weren’t tired of it yet. And the teams actually played some defense.

But if I’m being totally honest, I watched the SAG Awards instead.

I mean, did you SEE Winona Ryder’s face while her costar gave his speech after receiving “Best Drama Ensemble” ~> priceless!

 

The NHL All-Star Game happened here in Los Angeles over the weekend, and there was hockeyness all around the Staples Center.

screen-shot-2017-01-30-at-11-35-32-amIt started with the NHL100 on Friday where the top 100 players in hockey were chosen, in no particular order.

On Saturday, there was the skills competition.

The League, in an effort to stay current and hip, had Snoop Dogg perform at the event. And Snoop being Snoop didn’t feel the need to censor his song “The Next Episode” so the FBombs dropped for all of Staples and TV Land to hear. I had to laugh.

Here is a recap of all the winners from the skills competition.

In Sunday’s main event, The Metropolitan captured the All-Star Game title by beating the Pacific 4-3 after toppling the Atlantic 10-6 in the first round of play. The Pacific beat the Central 10-3 in the first round.

There were lots of games in the NBA over the weekend. Here are your scores and highlights.

College hoops are starting to heat up as we inch our way towards March Madness. Here is the latest AP Poll – and scores from the weekend.

In case you hadn’t heard, #SuperBowl51 is next Sunday, February 5th from Houston, Texas. The city will turn into a small-scale Olympic Village in order to host the mass of football fans and media that are expected.

The New England Patriots are playing the Atlanta Falcons.

Here is a schedule of all the events taking place this week and a schedule for game day events.

Country star Luke Bryan will sing the National Anthem. The cast of Hamilton will be performing at the festivities, and Lady Gaga will be the halftime show. CAN’T WAIT!

Ok people, hopefully, this is enough sports info to get you out there and talking with your family, friends, and coworkers!

Follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for more sports news, scores and highlights.

#SportBits … a little bit of info is all you need.

 

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#SportBitsUpdate: Russian Doping Scandal

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Following an independent report that confirmed the existence of a state-supported Russian doping program at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) decided days before the games began, to allow Russian athletes to take part in these summer Olympic games.

This came after a decision to ban the Russian track and field athletes was upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). Last weekend, the International Paralympic Committee banned Russia from participating in the upcoming 2016 Paralympic Games for allegedly violating international doping rules.

Let’s recap:

The Russian doping scandal and investigation began back in May when Russia’s former anti-doping director, Grigory Rodchenkov, told The New York Times that he had been ordered by state officials of the ministry of sport, tourism and youth policy to suppress evidence of performance-enhancing drug use by the Russian Olympians at the 2014 Sochi Games.

Rodchenkov explained how he developed the perfect anabolic steroid cocktail that allowed Russian athletes to recover quickly from their competitions so they would stay in peak shape during their Olympic run. Alcohol was used to speed up the absorption of the steroids. Rodchenkov went on to say how athletes were instructed to stockpile clean urine for months so they could be swapped for dirty samples at the lab – through a hand-sized hole in the wall – in the middle of the night.

(OK, this is SO going to be made into a movie – and I want Sorkin to write it!)

As of now, the Russian track and field team will be barred from competing in Rio. Consequently, IOC rejected a bid from Russian runner and whistleblower, Yulia Stepanov, to compete as a neutral athlete.

The committee has left the decision as to whether Russian athletes can take part in individual sports up to international governing federations. The IOC has demanded that Russians athletes provide proof of a positive anti-doping test. Currently, 118 competitors of the 389 Russian team have been banned.

Call me a cynic, but I never believed the IOC would take such a bold step and ban an entire nation from competing – especially one as prominent in international sports as Russia. Plus, I’m betting there is fear of #PutinBackLash.

Would it be fair to penalize an entire delegation of athletes for the faults of a few? My first thought is no, it’s not fair. But then when I consider the possibility (and probability) it was state-sponsored, and the decision to cheat allegedly came from top government officials, then I say yes, they all should pay. Medals-over-morals ain’t going to fly…

So why are ALL the Paralympic athletes banned? Because the Paralympics aren’t as prestigious?

What do you think about the Russian doping scandal? I’d love to hear. It’s an interesting topic of conversation for the dinner table….that’s for sure. #SportBits … a little bit of info is all you need.

Follow me on facebook, twitter and instagram for more sports news and updates.

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#SportBits … Opening Ceremony Fashion

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Sports and fashion collide #bigly at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio De Janeiro. From the athletes’ uniforms to their leisure wear, style choices will be discussed and analyzed at this year’s Olympics. Today, let’s look at some Opening Ceremony outfits for a few fashion forward countries.

With over a billion people worldwide expected to watch the Opening Ceremonies tonight, it’s no wonder leading fashion designers are foaming at the mouth to design their country’s Olympians. What an incredible platform to elevate your brand!

For the United States, Polo Ralph Lauren will again be outfitting #TeamUSA, and for the first time, everything will be Made In The USA. Athletes will be decked out in tapered, white denim jeans, patriotic T-shirts, Polo Pony-emblazoned navy blazers, and red, white, and blue striped boat shoes. Preppy, classic, fun….they’re ready for a weekend in the Hamptons, I’d say. Some critics are screaming #RussianInfluence however, pointing out the shirts’ resemblance to the Russian flag. As the Bidenator would say, that’s #malarkey!

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US Flag Bearer Michael Phelps will literally light the path for the US Athletes –  wearing a jacket that is the ultimate integration of innovation, fashion, and technology. Electroluminescent panels brightly illuminate portions of the jacket making Phelps a sight for all to see.

The Australian outfits for Rio also have a preppy, yacht club feel to them. Designed by Sportscraft, the Australian athletes will don green and white-striped blazers with white bottoms. The names of Olympic gold medalist champions are stitched into the lining of the blazers, which also have a special pocket for the athlete’s smartphones. #genius

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The preppy look continues with the South Koreans crispy white pants, navy blazers, and fedoras. The design team is taking no chances with the health of its athletes as the outfits are all infused with insect repellent to keep mosquitoes carrying the Zika virus at bay. #ZikaProof

SouthKorea

Some countries are not happy with their outfits, however. The Iranians have taken to social media complaining their uniforms resemble a school eraser.

Iran

The Georgians are upset because they feel their outfits represent a look of their past instead of a look to the future. I would have to agree.

Georgia

My favorite is #TeamCanada . The Canadian design duo Dean and Dan Caten of DSquared2 have partnered with Hudson Bay for Canada’s outfits. Athletes will be wearing a long black and red blazer/windbreaker mash up with a giant maple leaf and tails on the back. Flat front tapered wool stretch pants with bonded zippers, elastic waist and ankles give the look a modern, fresh feel. Badass, eh?

Canada

And this is just the beginning folks. These designers have put together “kits” for their athletes that include the Opening Ceremony outfits, performance uniforms, and leisure wear. Be sure to follow me on social media where I’ll be posting all my favs. I think you should share YOUR favorites too, using the hashtag #SportBitsFashion. #JumpIn

You can watch the Opening Ceremonies tonight at 7:30pm on NBC. #TeamUSA

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#SportBitsDaily … Wednesday

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Vintage Television

 

Right now I’m watching #RFed v. Cilic in the men’s quarter-finals at Wimbledon. Yesterday, both Williams sisters won their matches putting them in the semis, and on course for an all-Williams final. Lordy, who wouldn’t want to see that? Who would you root for?? Venus, at 36 years old? Or Serena – who is going for her 22nd Grand Slam – tying her with Steffi Graf? #quandary

Here are all scores from yesterday’s matches.

MLB: The 2016 All-Star roster was announced yesterday and the Chicago Cubs made history by becoming just the second team ever to have its entire infield start an All-Star Game.  The Boston Red Sox placed an AL-best six players on the team, the most they have sent to an #ASG since also sending six to the 2011 game.

MLB: New York Mets at San Diego Padres
Petco Park will host the 2016 All Star Game on July 12th. PhotoCredit: Jake Roth

 

Here are scores from yesterday’s games.

Breaking:

Double-amputee Olympian Oscar Pistorius has been sentenced to six years in prison for the murder of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp.

The University of Tennessee has reached a financial settlement with a group of women who sued the school in federal court for the way it handled their allegations of sexual assaults by student-athletes. According to documents obtained by ESPN, the university will pay the eight women $2.48 million.

The latest #RioWorry: Scientists have found dangerous drug-resistant “super bacteria” off beaches in Rio de Janeiro that will host Olympic swimming events and in a lagoon where rowing and canoe athletes will compete when the Games start on Aug. 5. #awesome

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A man runs next to a sewage system flowing on Copacabana beach in Rio. Photocredit: Reuters

Ok. That’s it. So now you know. #shortsweet

 

 

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#SportBitsDaily … Tuesday

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Happy July 5th…Hope you had a fun day yesterday. Getting a late start today …

Here is some sports news to take with you this morning.

NBA:

The NBA just got a bit more interesting AND boring at the same time. How, you ask? Well, former MVP and OKC Thunder star Kevin Durant made his decision to jump ship and join current MVP Steph Curry in Oakland. In the “Next Chapter” on the Player’s Tribune, Durant cited his growth as a man and a player, and his need for a new challenge as reasons for leaving. But we all know it’s about the bling…and the Championship ring he wants so desperately.  You can’t really blame him…although ESPN commentator Stephen A. Smith does. The move sets up a SUPERPOWER in the western conference, which isn’t good for the game if you ask me. When one team dominates, as this team will, it’s bad for the league, and for basketball fans…unless you’re a Warrior fan of course.

The OKC organization had a CLASSY response…no sore losers here…I was impressed.

After Durant signed with Golden State, the dominoes started to fall. Here is an update on the #freeagencyfrenzy .

At Wimbledon, No.2 seed Andy Murray beat Australian rising star Nick Kyrgios, 7-5 6-1 6-4, to reach his 9th Wimbledon quarter-final. The 29-year-old has now won eight matches in a row on grass, and joins Pete Sampras and John McEnroe in reaching nine consecutive Wimbledon quarter-finals.

No. 3 seed Roger Federer moved into his 14th quarter-final with ease yesterday beating American Steve Johnson 6-3 6-2 7-5.  Federer moves one step closer to contesting for his eighth title at the All England Club, which would be a record. Only one man – Rafael Nadal – has captured eight or more titles at the same Grand Slam championship.

On the women’s side, the Williams sisters can move closer to a finals reunion should they get through their quarter-final matches today.

World No 1 Serena, with six Wimbledon crowns to her credit, will play Russian 21st seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the last eight after the defending champion romped to a 7-5, 6-0 victory over Russian 13th seed Svetlana Kuznetsova.

Five-time champion Venus takes on Kazakhstan’s Yaroslava Shvedova after becoming the oldest Wimbledon women’s quarter-finalist for 22 years.

More Wimbledon scores….here.

MLB news:

LOTS of games yesterday…check scores here.

And a friggin bald eagle found freedom and flew through Dodger Stadium at the Orioles game!

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It’s a short one today….but at least now you know.

 

 

 

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#SportBitsDaily … #TGIF

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Happy 4th of July weekend #SportBits readers! Hopefully, you are all where you’re going to be for the big day, because traveling today will be a nightmare. You might need some satellite radio, portable charges, and lots of patience to get you through the traffic jams and long security lines. Thankfully, I got to my destination yesterday….so good luck to you. Stay strong!

CWS: This is what it looks like when a school wins its first National Championship in program history.

Coast Carolina won the College World Series yesterday, beating Arizona 4-3 in a hard fought and tense Game 3. Severe weather in Omaha, Nebraska caused the game to be postponed from its original Wednesday night start time. Head coach Gary Gilmore won his first title after 21 years of coaching, and the Chanticleers (it’s a rooster!!) capped off their improbable run with its first National Championship.

NBA: Let the CRAZY off-season deals begin…..

  • The Los Angeles Lakers will pay the 7-1 center Timofey Mozgov, who will turn 30 in two weeks, $64 million over the next four seasons. The Cavaliers traded two first-round picks to the Denver Nuggets for Mozgov in January 2015. DUDE IS 30 AND COMING OF MAJOR KNEE SURGURY. #wtf
  • Free agent DeMar DeRozan has agreed to a five-year, $139 million-plus deal to stay with the Toronto Raptors.
  • Free-agent center Joakim Noah and the New York Knicks are working to finalize a deal in the range of four years and $70 million-plus.

More free-agency news here. And there is more to come…. #Durant #Gasol #Howard ~> stay tuned.

MLB:

The Cleveland Indians won their 13th straight behind Carlos Carrasco‘s 14 strikeouts last night. The win gave the Indians their longest winning streak in nearly 65 years

IT IS PANIC TIME FOR DODGER FANS. Superman ace pitcher Clayton Kershaw has a herniated disc and has been put on the 15day DL. The Dodgers quickly scrambled to beef up their ailing pitching staff by acquiring right-hander Bud Norris from the Atlanta Braves. Holeeeeee hell this is not good.

Love me a good comeback: The Detroit Tigers began an 11-game road trip yesterday with a WICKED ninth-inning rally v. Tampa Bay. The Tigers trailed 7-2 entering the ninth and opened the inning with four consecutive hits, overcoming a five-run deficit win 10-7.

More MLB news and yesterday’s scores…here.

 Wimbledon:

Of course it’s the fashion getting all the news. Nike’s “lingerie” dress is really irritating some people. Many feel the free flowing outfit belongs in the bedroom and not the All England Tennis Club. Jeez-Louise…everyone needs to lighten up! Thoughts?

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No. 8 seed Venus Williams won her match v.  Maria Sakkari 7-5, 4-6, 6-3, on the smaller, outer court 18 yesterday. Afterwards, she said she didn’t mind playing on the outside court as long as EVERYONE has to, insinuating that the scheduling is not fair. When asked if she could imagine a five-time male champion being on an outside court, Venus said with a smile, “I haven’t seen that in the scheduling yet.” The rain is wreaking havoc, so scheduling matches is proving to be quite a challenge. Guess you can’t please everyone.

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic has not decided if he’s playing in Rio. “I’ve been trying to reach out to Brazilian friends and acquaintances, [to] get information … When I get more, I’ll be able to make my final decision.” #RioWorries

The biggest upset yesterday was No. 2 seed and French Open winner Garbine Muguruza losing 6-2, 6-1 to Slovakian qualifier Jana Cepelova who is ranked No. 124. The match took less than an hour. Ouch.

Here are all your results and match updates.

Olympic News:

22-time Olympic medalist Michael Phelps became the first swimmer to qualify for 5 Olympics yesterday when finished first at the men’s 200-meter butterfly at the U.S. Olympic trials. This sets up a Friday night showdown between Phelps and longtime competitor Ryan Lochte in the final of the 200-meter individual medley.This one is especially significant for the 31-year-old Lochte, given it’s his only real shot at swimming a race of his own (rather than a relay) at the Olympics.

L A S T L Y :  #JohnnyFootball Update: Johnny Manziel’s dad called him a “Druggie” who would best benefit from some time in jail. Johnny responded maturely with this instagram from Costa Rica with caption #HiDad.

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His trouble continues as yesterday the NFL announced Johnny has been suspended for the first four games of the season…making his return to the an even bigger uphill battle. He’s a free agent.  Who is going to take a chance on him?  I’m all for second chances, but ya gimme something to work with. #maturity #commitment

Ok. That’s it…so now you know. Enjoy your 4th! Lot’s of good sports on this weekend. Watch…learn…and chat it up around the BBQ. And can I recommend a digital thermometer. It really is THE ONLY WAY to get those burgers, steaks and chicken cooked properly. Cheers!

 

 

 

 

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#SportBitsDaily … Wednesday

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Happy Wednesday yo. I’m feeling a bit spicy today…I think it’s that new Kanye West video with all those naked waxy bodies in the bed that has me rethinking things. Or perhaps it’s the anxiety I’m feeling over what time the #TWC guy is actually going to show up to fix my wifi.  Either way – I’ve gotta just deal – and report some sports – so let’s go.

Conor McGregor and his continuing gripe against the UFC lives on. As you may recall, McGregor and his much anticipated rematch with Nate Diaz was pulled from UFC 200 because he/McGregor wouldn’t break his training routine to do the required publicity for the fight.  McGregor retired…then un-retired…and after he and UFC prez Dana White seemingly kissed and made up, the rematch was back (UFC 202 – August 2oth). Word has it the bad blood is still a-flowin, and with the publicity requirements for 202 set to kick off next week in Las Vegas, many are wondering if McGregor will show. I’ve got $20 that says he doesn’t.

High drama at the CWS  last night. Down 1-0 in the best-of-three series to Arizona, Coastal Carolina staved off elimination for the fourth time in the CWS and fifth time in the NCAA Tournament, but not before some nervous moments in the eighth inning, when their three-run lead was cut to one. The Chanticleers held on for the 5-4 win, forcing a WINNER-TAKE-ALL final game TONIGHT, 8pm on ESPN.

In the MLB, the pitchers are having a rough go:

  • Clayton Kershaw had to fly back to LA yesterday to see a specialist about his sore back. (HOLEEEE HELL)
  • Zach Greinke left his game in the 2nd with a sore left oblique.
  • Thor and Steven Matz both have bone spurs in their elbows.

On the flip side: Dodger teenager Julio Urias got his first MLB win as the Dodgers beat the Brewers 6-5. And 21yr old Lucas Giolito, the pride of Santa Monica, CA ,made his MLB debut for the Nationals. He and his 100-mph fastball kicked ass for 4 innings before the rain came.

More MBL scores…here.

Wimbledon news, scores and highlights … here.

The Olympic Trials continue, and in swimming it’s the shiny and new that stole the show last night in Omaha (cue Peyton Manning). Many familiar faces are being left behind as these plucky newbies are taking their spots in Rio. Ryan Lochte, Missy Franklin and Natalie Coughlin are a few of the household names that have been swept aside by their younger versions. #FatherTime…. when he calls…RUN (or swim) as fast as you can!

In other Olympic news, world No. 1 golfer Jason Day is the latest to pull out of the #RioOlympics over Zika concerns. As I understand it, it’s the men who need to worry since doctors are unsure how long the virus can live in sperm. Doctors say it lives in the blood stream for 7-10 days, so as long as a woman doesn’t get pregnant in that time, she should be safe. The men on the other hand…should be thinking one way or another about  “pulling out.”

Speaking of “pulling out,” Donald Trump has nabbed his first celebrity endorsement in former Seattle Seahawk Terrell Owens. He joins Bobby Knight and Mike Tyson as Trump believers who hope their stellar reputations within the sporting world can help sway those undecided voters to hop on the Trump train.

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I’m still reflecting on the legendary life and career of Pat Summitt, who passed away yesterday from early-onset Alzheimer’s. To say she paved the way for women in sports is a huge understatement.

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Lastly, you’ll be happy to know the legendary banana boat picture from Chris Paul, Dwayne Wade and LeBron James’ vacation last year now lives on — through a Snapchat filter. OH THANK GOD! Sadly, there is just no way to look cool riding on a banana boat…unless you’re a cartoon filter. Way to go guys.

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That’s it…so now you know. #ttyt

PS. This is disturbing….right? It’s not just me.

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#SportBitsDaily … Tuesday

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Good morning…here’s some sports news for you. Take it => use it => impress someone with your knowledge. Why the hell not?

SOCCER:

#Brexit Part Two: In a shocking upset, England lost to Iceland, 2-1, in the Euro 2016 soccer tournament yesterday. Right after the loss, Roy Hodgeson pulled a Lionel Messi and resigned as team manager. English fans lost their minds, the Iceland announcer almost lost his voice, and the country once again lost all that they thought was right and just in the world.

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Not quite as dramatic, but almost as impressive, was Italy’s defeat over two-time defending champion Spain in the round-of-16. Does this mean the end of Spain’s reign (mainly in the plain)? Who knows. There is so much soccer going on right now, I’m just trying to stay afloat here, people. Spain’s manager Vicente de Bosque doesn’t think so, however.

BASKETBALL:

Legendary Tennessee basketball coach Pat Summitt died this morning. She was 64 years old. Summitt, who built the Lady Vols into a major powerhouse, was the winningest coach in the history of major college basketball. She passed away after battling early onset dementia, “Alzheimer’s type,” according to a statement from the Pat Summitt foundation.

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The #USABMT was “officially” announced yesterday…but the roster had been leaked and it was all kinda anticlimactic.

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FOOTBALL:  (not soccer)

Pittsburgh Steeler James Harrison agreed yesterday to sit down with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to discuss the league’s investigation into performance-enhancing drugs among it’s players  (mainly himself) –  but only on his terms. This is the instagram he sent out:

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Harrison was implicated (along with Peyton Manning) in an Al-Jazeera report back in December, but has refused to meet with the league to discuss the allegations, until now. In the meantime, he seems to be enjoying taking shots at Goodell and the NFL on Twitter.

Former NFL coach and defensive wizard Buddy Ryan died this morning. He was 82yrs old. Ryan coached in the NFL for 35 seasons, and was known for building some of football’s top defenses.

The attorney who inadvertently sent a text message to The Associated Press expressing doubt about whether Johnny Manziel could stay clean has withdrawn from representing Manziel in his domestic violence case. Manziel, 23, is accused of hitting and threatening his former girlfriend, Colleen Crowley, during a night out in January. He is facing a misdemeanor assault charge that carries a penalty of up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine.

BASEBALL:

#STUDALERT: Chicago Cubs third-baseman Kris Bryant hit 3 home runs in an 11-8 win over the Reds on Monday night, supplanting Ernie Banks as the youngest in franchise history to accomplish the feat. Bryant, 24, who went 5-for-5 with two doubles and six RBIs, is 10 days younger than Banks was when he hit three homers in 1955.

Thor lost yesterday…. first time in over a month.

The Yankees and Stub Hub have ended their feud over the team’s elimination of the print-at-home service, with a $100million dollar deal that benefits…. well, you decide.

Yesterday’s MLB scores…here.

CWS: JC Cloney pitched a four-hitter for Arizona and the Wildcats beat Coastal Carolina 3-0 in Game 1 of the College World Series. Game two is tonight.

TENNIS:

The first round continues on day two of Wimbledon and there have been no major upsets thus far…unless you’re upset that the eventual Champions may lose $400,000 because of #Brexit.

Wimbledon scores and highlight…here.

That’s it for now, folks. Check in with me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more news throughout the day. #ttyt

 

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#SportBitsDaily … Monday

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Hello #SportBits readers! I’m back after a week away. Did you even notice? Oy. Don’t answer that.  I took the kids east for their summer camp jobs in the glorious Adirondack Mountains. We even managed to squeeze in a Dead and Company show. #familytime . Did you miss me? I feel like so much has happened since we last spoke…HELLO NBA CHAMPIONS CLEVELAND CAVALIERS! I’m happy to be writing my daily reports again, so let’s just dive right in.

SOCCER:

I’ll be on the east coast for a bit, and dealing with the time change is a TOTAL DRAG for watching my games. Last night I had to stay up until ALMOST 11PM to watch the end of the Copa America championship game! But it was worth it…unless you’re a Lionel Messi fan. His Argentinian team fell short for a second year in a row to Chile in overtime penalty kicks. Messi himself missed a PK (first time EVER according to the broadcast), and was so devastated by the loss, he announced his retirement from international play shortly thereafter. It was painful to watch.

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Lionel Messi trying to figure out how it all happened.

In a rematch of the tourney opener, the #USMNT once again fell short against Columbia, 1-0, who ended up with the bronze medal. Who wants third place anyway?

BASEBALL news:

Well, this isn’t earth shattering news, but it always amazes me when some dumbass fan runs out onto the field for his/her 15seconds of fame. So here is said dumbass fan, running out onto the field during a Cardinals v. Mariners game. I say, if you’re going to run out in the MIDDLE OF THE PLAY, at least try and catch the ball. #doofus

Albert Pujols hit career homer #574 last night, passing Harmon Killebrew on the all-time list, and is nine away from tying Mark McGwire.

The NY Mets signed former star shortstop Jose Reyes, a move that has left many scratching their heads. First off, Reyes is not the player he was when he left the team in 2011. But even more controversial is that Reyes was arrested for domestic violence charges after he allegedly assaulted his wife in Hawaii last October. He was suspended during legal proceedings, but reinstated after his wife refused to cooperate and charges were dropped. Apparently the suspension was enough under the MLB policy. Dude got big cheers from fans, kids included, when he made his first at-bat yesterday, which just feels WRONG.

Here are yesterday’s scores

The best-of-three-games College World Series finals begin tonight (7 ET on ESPN), with the Arizona Wildcats (48-22) taking on the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (53-17) at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha (cue Peyton Manning).

TENNIS:

Wimbledon begins today and here’s all you need to know about that!

The NBA season may be over (and what a finish it was!!) but the basketball news doesn’t stop there. Unrestricted free agent Kevin Durant has chosen his list of teams by whom he’d like to be courted: OKC, Golden State, San Antonio, Boston, Miami, and the Clippers – corsages not mandatory. Of course his current OKC team is a-hoping and a-praying he signs a 2year deal with an opt-out, but if he’s focusing on that ring (he’s not getting any younger!) I don’t see that happening. I see a move to the Bay Area and GSW, which would TOTALLY suck for my Lakers. #sadface

The Olympic roster for the USA men’s team was announced yesterday:

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There are some notables missing, Steph, LeBron, Russell, Blake, to name a few, but it’s still an impressive group.

In other Olympic news, swimmer Ryan Lochte was denied a chance to defend his Olympic title in Rio in the 400-meter individual medley when he finished third behind a pair of college teammates who raced right by him on the closing laps. The 11-time Olympic medalist looked slow in the pool and was apparently hindered by a groin injury sustained in the morning prelims. It’s called #FatherTime my friend …and it’s a bitch.

Last week the World Anti Doping Agency suspended the accreditation of the Brazilian Doping Control Laboratory due to a non-conformity with the International Standard for Laboratories.  The suspension, which took effect on June 22nd, prohibits the Laboratory from carrying out all anti-doping analyses on urine and blood samples. It may appeal the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport within 21 days of receipt of notice.

39 days until the games begin.

That’s it for now. I’m dealing with some spotty wifi here folks.  I’m hoping to get my sh*t together and post a bit earlier in the AM. But with the kids gone, that extra hour (or two) of sleep is soooo tempting. Have a good day. #ttyt

 

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#SportbitsDaily … Wednesday

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NHL:

The NHL has settled on Las Vegas as it’s choice for expansion, provided organizers can come up with the $500 million fee. They’re calling them the Black Knights (love it!!) …and they’ll make their debut (most likely) in 2017. Next to Vegas…the Oakland Raiders!

SOCCER:

Copa America continues…here are yesterday’s results.

UEFA Euro results….here.

Team Russia was handed a suspended disqualification yesterday, and a fine of $168,000 for the actions of Russian fans following a 1-1 draw in a game against England in Marseille. Should more violence occur in the stadium, Russia will automatically be disqualified from Euro 2016. Put down your beer and chairs people, and just watch the match fahcrissakes.

NFL:

A lawsuit launched by a group of Patriots fans against the National Football League regarding the handling of the “Deflategate” investigation was dismissed by a federal judge. Major props for trying though..

MLB:

MLB scores and highlights…here.

The NCAA College World Series tournament is set…here is your lineup, game times and TV schedule.

ICYMI:

The 2016 Rio Olympics medals were unveiled yesterday….hmmmmm. #jurysout

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Ok. That’s it. So now you know…

 

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#SportBitsDaily … Tuesday

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Today’s theme ….balls.

NBA:

The Golden State Warriors blew their chance to clinch the NBA title at home last night. The war of words between LeBron James and Klay Thompson that began Sunday, continued on the court, and King James came out on top. The Cavs needed the win, and behind a 41pt performance from James and Kyrie Irving, they did just that, 112-97. The series returns to Cleveland for Game 6 on Thursday…and with Draymond Green back in the lineup after his groin-grabbing suspension – it’ll be dramatic – and fun.

Golf:

Big balls for Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy …b0th confirming they WILL take part in the summer Olympics despite #Zika concerns .

MLB:

More groin news: Cleveland Indians third baseman Juan Uribe was carted off the field in the fourth inning of Sunday’s game against the Los Angeles Angels after Mike Trout’s ground ball nailed him in the nuts. He is listed day to day with a testicular contusion. Wasn’t he wearing a cup, you ask?  Don’t they all wear cups? Well, apparently Cleveland trainers didn’t have one in his size. #biggerballs

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*Insert some witty #DonJuan hashtag here.

Yesterday’s MLB scores…here.

Hey…let’s hear it for the old guys:

Ok, 32yrs may not be old. But to pursue an NFL career at that age is…well… ballsy. 32-year old former NBA player Nate Robinson had a tryout Monday with the Seattle Seahawks, a league source confirmed. The 5-foot-9 Robinson had been playing basketball in Israel, but he has expressed interest in pursuing an NFL career.

“The biggest challenge is probably all the haters, everybody counting me out, somebody not really giving me the opportunity. That’s what I think the biggest challenge will be, getting somebody to give me that chance.”

Good luck Nate – I’m rooting for you!

Meanwhile, Ichiro Suzuki is 42 years old, and after a disappointing 2015 season with his longtime Mariners team, many thought he was done. But he hung in there and signed with the Marlins for 2016, and is having a helluva season so far. Suzuki has a .350 batting average and is just 23 career hits short of 3000.

ICYMI: 

Baylor interim president David Garland acknowledged Monday that a movement to bring back Art Briles as football coach in 2017 has gained momentum among a few key donors. #BEYONDballsy.  There are no words…except that my incoming high school senior WILL NOT be looking at Baylor this fall. #BaylorScandal #notrust #nofaith

Let’s end with a shout out to all the ladies of the WNBA …

Ok. That’s it. So now you know…

 

 

 

 

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#SportBits … Weekend Recap

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It is with a heavy heart I write my recap today, after the horrific massacre in Orlando, Florida. These tragic and senseless shootings continue to happen at an alarming rate. It’s sad, confusing, and maddening that we cannot figure out a way to battle this epidemic. Watching sports is a way for me to step out of the insanity for a little while. I’m reminded that these games are just that…GAMES…and they offer joy and reprieve during times where joy is hard to find…and I am thankful for that. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families today.

#SportBits

NBA:

The Golden State Warriors are 1 game away from winning their second consecutive NBA title. The can take it tonight at home – but they’ll have to do it without forward Draymond Green. Green was assessed a Flagrant 1 foul and suspended for 1 game for what the NBA said was a “retaliatory swipe of his hand to the groin” of LeBron James on Friday. The flagrant 1 gave Green his fourth flagrant foul point of the playoffs, which carries an automatic suspension. He will be allowed to participate in postgame celebrations if the Warriors win (they will). Draymond has been caught swiping the groinage before…kinda weird.

Russell Westbrook and James Harden have removed their names from consideration for USA Basketball’s 2016 Rio Olympics team. They are the latest star athletes to opt out of the games this summer. While neither mentioned the Zika virus as the reason – that’s the reason. I don’t care what anyone says.

The LA Lakers announced that Magic Johnson is no longer a ceremonial (i.e. non paid) Vice President of the organization. Why? Because he’s often critical of the team on social media – sounding somewhat teenagery at times – and the Lakers want all to know that “his opinions, comments and social media posts are solely his, and do not represent or reflect those of Lakers ownership of management. Hopefully this will eliminate any confusion over this issue in the future.”

This was one of my favs:

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#teenagery

NHL:

The Pittsburgh Penguins clinched the Stanley Cup with a 3-1 Game 6 win over the San Jose Sharks. This is their 4th title in franchise history. Team Captain Sidney Crosby was awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.

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Gordy Howe, the Hall of Fame forward, also known as “Mr. Hockey” died on Friday. He was 88 yrs. old. Howe scored 975 goals in 2,186 games for four teams in two leagues—during a professional career that spanned 32 seasons from 1946 to 1980. In his final season, he scored 15 goals in 80 games for the Hartford Whalers.

MLB:

The 2016 MLB draft is over…. and here is what should know about that.

Here are the weekend scores and highlights.

In a TOTALLY DRAMATIC FINISH, UC Santa Barbara stunned Louisville with a walk-off home run to earn their first trip to the College World Series. FYI: Louisville was 47-0 this season when leading after 8 innings…and the FRESHMAN pinch hitter (Sam Cohen) had hit only 1 home run all year. I LOVE SPORTS!!!!

 

USCB will be playing Coastal Carolina, who clinched its first-ever trip to the College World Series Sunday night as the Chanticleers were able to earn a walk-off win over LSU in Baton Rouge. Can’t wait for the CWS – and here is what you need to know about it.

 

HORSE RACING:

There was no Triple Crown on the line; but the finish was still dramatic at the $1.5million Belmont Stakes on Saturday. Three-year-old gray colt, Creator, closed the race with a mad rush and caught Destin at the wire in the photo finish. Heavily favored Preakness winner Exaggerator wound up in 11th place. Creator co-owner and celebrity chef Bobby Flay is certainly cooking up celebratory feast for friends today.

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SOCCER/FOOTBALL:

Big sigh of relief for the #USMNT. After a 2-0 loss in their opener v Colombia, a 4-0 rout of Costa Rica put them back on track. On Saturday, the USA team beat Paraguay 1-0 on a Cliff Dempsey goal, which puts them in the Copa America quarterfinals.

#DUMBASSfanalert: English and Russian soccer fans hurled bottles and chairs, clashing with each other and French riot police in Marseille on Saturday ahead of their teams’ opening Euro 2016 match. One person suffered a heart attack while another England fan was knocked unconscious. There were also clashes in the stadium following England’s 1-1 draw with Russia, after Russia fans appeared to rush at England supporters. My suggestion would be to move the 9pm start to earlier in the day…leaving less time for fans to get hammered and act like IDIOTS before, during and after the game. #forfucksake

GOLF:

Canada’s Brooke Henderson claimed her first major title yesterday, beating world number one Lydia Ko in a sudden-death play-off at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship.

 

That’s its for now folks… enjoy the game tonight (9pm ET on ABC)…lots of drama surrounding it…should be a great one. Follow me on social media, HerDaily.com and right back here for daily sports news, scores and highlights.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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#SportBitsDaily … Friday

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Fifteen thousand people are expected to attend an interfaith service that will be held at the KFC Yum! Center at 2 p.m. today for boxing great Muhammad Ali. Former President Bill ClintonBilly CrystalBryant Gumbel, and Ali’s wife, Lonnie, will give eulogies. Also expected to speak is Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch. The service is open to the public.

NHL:

After wild first period goal-fest in Game 5 in the #StanleyCupFinals, the San Jose Sharks held on to win in Pittsburgh, 4-2, to force a Game 6 in San Jose on Sunday.

Hockey legend Gordie Howe died this morning, the Detroit Red Wings have confirmed. He was 88. The Hall of Famer played on four Stanley Cup championship teams in Detroit during a 25-year stint that began in 1946. He retired from hockey for good when he was 52.

NBA:

After winning Game 3 on Wednesday by 30 pts. without Kevin Love, a game which they were going to win NO MATTER WHAT, word has it the Cavaliers are wondering if they even need the injured star forward in the lineup for Game 4, tonight. He’s got to pass the concussion test before he’s cleared, which will probably be something like riding a unicycle while explaining the Theory of Relativity. …in Mandarin.

MLB:

The Philadelphia Phillies had the No. 1 pick in the MLB draft yesterday and took this guy. Here is more draft news from Day 1.

Manny Muchado was suspended 4 games for taking a swing and a miss at pitcher Yordano Ventura , who got 9 games for nailing Muchado with a fastball.

NFL:

Yahoo Sports reported yesterday that Von Miller could sit out the entire 2016 season. His contract negotiations with the Denver Broncos have hit a snag over what part of the 6yr, $114million will be guaranteed.

#RIPdabbing … Cam Newton announced yesterday the dab is done. We can all go back to living our lives now.

TENNIS:

Rafa Nadal will skip Wimbledon this year because of his recurring wrist injury.

Finally…

Loving the spirit of 7 yr old cancer survivor and Cub fan Beckham Zobrist. Retinoblastoma took his eye, but it couldn’t take his Cub spirit. Check out his prosthetic:

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Ok. That’s it. So now you know…

 

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#SportBits…Trolling #KingJames

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It was the tighter shorts and jersey that got my attention. Early in this NBA season, I reported in my column how LeBron James was wearing smaller, less baggy jerseys and shorts. His explanation made sense:  it looked neater, more professional, and sent a positive message to young kids and fans. Next came the request that his teammates dress appropriately before and after games – again, to give off an air of professionalism. Gone were the hoverboards tooling players around the arena. It seemed LeBron was on a mission to change the culture of his team. I thought it was a great idea, but then again, I make my kids dress nicely when we travel, because if you look respectable, (no flips flops or shorts on a plane…EVER) you will be treated with respect.

So, it is with great disappointment and confusion that I write about LeBron’s recent social media activity. It started in early March when James sent out a bunch of cryptic tweets which many felt were subtle digs at his teammates. It sent Cavalier fans into a panic. Was James unhappy in Cleveland? Did he want to be traded? Next he sent out an Instagram where he screamed at the camera about working out: “Something is really wrong with me! And I love that it is. #StriveForGreatness #ImCrazyForIt.” The next day he unfollowed the Cavs on Twitter and Instagram, which was surely seen as a sign of the apocalypse. He has since re-followed the Cavs on Instagram. Phew. Now he had decided to join Snapchat.

I feel silly writing all this. Trolling #KingJames on social media is not really productive. But what has me really irritated is that he started the season with a vision for his team: to create a culture of professionalism and focus, and now he’s doing things that couldn’t be more detrimental to that vision. It doesn’t feel like someone who wants to send a positive message to young kids, or be a strong role model and leader. It feels immature…and childish.

 

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