Lakers Land $100-Million Jersey Patch Deal With Korean Food Brand Bibigo

This partnership is about more than just dumplings and basketball – food and sports have the power to unite and connect people from all walks of life. The devotion required to create a meal filled with love and care is akin to the devotion needed to swallow a three-point shot game after a fight. That’s why Bibigo and the Lakers both have passionate fans all over the globe – they live off the devotion needed for their craft. This connection is suitable for a natural partnership that is particularly organic.

As the new official global marketing partner of the Los Angeles Lakers, Bibigo will partner with the team to create and share inspiring content, drive consumer engagement and offer unique opportunities to introduce fans to the delicious flavors and benefits of Korean food. Bibigo will implement its marketing programs through Lakers’ properties such as signage in the arena, digital content elements on Lakers.com and the jersey patch designation.

Source: LA Times

Orphaned Toddler Adopted By A Gay Man In Cambodia Is Now A US Olympic Diver

The road to a global sporting event such as the Olympics does not come easy for most athletes, but it’s much more difficult for those without the support and resources to begin with.

“I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for him, his love, and support,” Jordan Windle told NBC Sports of his father, Jerry Windle.

Jordan, 22, was adopted as an 18-month-old boy in Cambodia. His birth parents died when he was just a year old and, for the next few months, he would live in an orphanage in Phnom Penh.

It was in that orphanage that Jerry — then a single gay man who struggled to adopt in the U.S. — would find him as a toddler suffering from malnutrition, scabies and severe infections. Jerry took him home to Florida, nursed him back to health and ultimately became his father.

Now, Jordan is in Tokyo for the Summer Olympics, representing the U.S. in diving.

Jordan’s Olympic ambitions began at age 7. After catching the attention of Tim O’Brien, son of famed diving coach Ron O’Brien, at a diving camp, Jordan entered the Fort Lauderdale diving program and soared through the ranks, according to Outsports.

It was also during this time when he met Olympic gold medalist and LGBT activist Greg Louganis. He was even called “Little Louganis.”

After three Olympic trials — first at age 13, then at age 16 — Jordan achieved his dream of 15 years and qualified for the men’s platform event in June. And while his father cannot be with him due to COVID-19 restrictions, he is still “super excited” about it.

“I can usually hear (my dad) out of everyone in the audience, which is awesome. Not having him at the Olympics will be different,” Jordan told Today“I wish he was there, but that doesn’t really change what I’m going there to do: To have fun, show off a little bit, and put on a show for everyone. That’s going to be my intention and I’m hopefully going to make him proud.”

The father and son celebrated their story in a children’s book that they co-authored in 2011. The book, titled “An Orphan No More: The True Story of a Boy,” tells the story of a rooster who was told by other animals that he cannot be a father without a hen. One day, he stumbles upon an egg that no one wants. What hatches is a duckling, but despite their different looks, the two would prove, in Louganis’ words, that “where there is love, there is family.”

In 2016, Jordan returned to Cambodia to perform a diving exhibition for orphans. He sought to inspire the children he was once among and show them what they can achieve.

Jordan is competing in the 3-meter and 10-meter events. His first competition (3-meter Springboard Prelim) is scheduled for Aug. 2 at 3 p.m. (Tokyo time).

Source: NextShark

What The Russell Westbrook Trade Means For The Los Angeles Lakers

The quest to maximize whatever elite years remain in LeBron James took another turn, and perhaps the sharpest one yet, with the Los Angeles Lakers getting Russell Westbrook in a major Draft-day trade.

This was a deal that required the Lakers to cross their fingers while shaking hands with the Washington Wizards. That’s because, as combustible as Westbrook is — he’s rewritten all the triple-double records in the book — his skill-set fits only in certain systems and situations. Placing Westbrook next to LeBron and also Anthony Davis will require adjustments and sacrifices with everyone involved in this Big Three experiment, but especially with Westbrook.

First, the deal itself: Westbrook, the 2024 second-round pick and 2028 second-round pick go to the Lakers and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Montrezl Harrell, Kyle Kuzma and the 22nd pick go to Washington, as first reported by The Athletics’ Shams Charania.

Westbrook is easily the heavyweight in the deal, as a former MVP and nine-time All-Star who’s coming off his third career season averaging a triple-double – 22.2 points, 11.5 rebounds and 11.7 assists in his only season with the Wizards.

Westbrook now goes to his fourth team in four years, and just as curious, he’s aligned with yet another superstar in an effort to develop championship chemistry. There was no payoff in Oklahoma City with Kevin Durant and then Paul George, or the Rockets with James Harden, and certainly not the rebuilding Wizards who had little to offer as help besides Bradley Beal.

With the exception of reaching the NBA Finals with Durant — and that happened almost 10 years ago — Westbrook has advanced as far as the conference finals just twice despite those starry tandems.

Westbrook proved last season at age 32 that he’s still a highly productive point guard who plays at a rapid pace. That aids him at reaching the rim for layups, pushing the ball upcourt on the fast break, and out-rebounding taller players even in traffic. It also results in turnovers, too, as a result of his high-risk, high-usage style.

He’ll be teammates with LeBron, a player he respects, and a player who’d be willing to adjust for someone of Westbrook’s caliber. One area where LeBron can and probably must sacrifice is ball-handling. While LeBron assumed that role since arriving in LA three years ago to great success, Westbrook is most effective with the ball. Without it, Westbrook must play off the ball, where his shooting issues become more glaring.

Also, Westbrook has never had a big man with Davis’ talent. Therefore, the change of scenery plus an uptick in the caliber of running partners should trigger something positive within Westbrook, or at least the Lakers hope.

Whether it results in another championship is anyone’s guess, though. LeBron and Davis are coming off a frustrating season because of injuries largely to blame for their first-round playoff exit. Now they’ll get a celebrated third partner who will allow them to recharge and reboot.

The reason for adding Westbrook is clear: The Lakers are doing whatever they can, within the constraints of the salary cap, to give LeBron as many swings at the championship plate as possible. With LeBron entering a 19th season, he’s running out of time to get a fifth ring. And Westbrook is running out of teams.

Source: NBA

After 105 Years, Cleveland Changing Name From Indians To Guardians After 2021 Season

Known as the Indians since 1915, Cleveland’s Major League Baseball team will next be called the Guardians.

The ballclub announced the name change Friday with a video on Twitter narrated by actor Tom Hanks, ending months of internal discussions triggered by a national reckoning by institutions and teams to permanently drop logos and names considered racist.

The name change is effective at the end of the 2021 season.

Cleveland’s new name was inspired by the large landmark stone edifices — referred to as traffic guardians — that flank both ends of the Hope Memorial Bridge, which connects downtown to Ohio City. As the team moved closer to making a final decision on the name, team owner Paul Dolan said he found himself looking closely at the huge art deco sculptures.

“Frankly, I hadn’t studied them that closely until we started talking about them and I should emphasize, we’re not named after the bridge, but there’s no question that it’s a strong nod to those and what they mean to the community,” he said following a news conference at the ballpark.

The organization spent most of the past year whittling down a list of potential names that was at nearly 1,200 just over a month ago. But the process, which the team said included 140 hours of interviews with fans, community leaders, front-office personnel and a survey of 40,000 fans, quickly accelerated, and the club landed on Guardians.

Dolan has said last summer’s social unrest, touched off by the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, spurred his intention to change the club’s name.

“We do feel like we’re doing the right thing and that’s what’s driving this,” Dolan said. “I know some people disagree, but if anything I’ve gotten more and more comfortable that we’re headed in the right direction.

“And actually, the selection of the name solidifies that feeling because of the values that the name represents.”

The team’s colors will remain the same, and the new Guardians logos will incorporate some of the architectural features of the bridge.

In 2018, the Indians stopped wearing the contentious Chief Wahoo logo on their jerseys and caps. However, the team continues to sell merchandise bearing the smiling, red-faced caricature that has drawn protests from Native American groups for decades.

Cleveland’s change comes as the Washington Football Team continues to work toward a similar makeover. Washington recently said it will reveal a new name and logo in 2022.

Source: ESPN

TK Kirkland: Parents Should Push Their Kids, Look At Floyd, Michael, Serena And Tiger

In this clip, TK Kirkland explained why some people are more gifted than others, including Eddie Murphy, who is gifted in the world of comedy. TK then spoke about other greats, including the Williams sisters, Tiger Woods, Michael Jackson, and Floyd Mayweather, as people who were pushed by their parents to be great. To hear his full argument on why some people “need a little dictatorship,” hit the above clip.

NBA Sixth Man Of The Year Jordan Clarkson Helps Restore Filipino Food Truck (World Famous Yum Yum Asian Food Truck) After Racist Vandalism

Utah Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson helped restore a Filipino food truck that was vandalized last week with racist slurs and derogatory images.

According to Austin Facer of ABC 4, Clarkson was one of a number of people who joined IdentityGraphx and helped restore the World Famous Yum Yum Food Truck, which serves Asian fusion and Filipino food in northern Utah, after the vandalism.

Layton, Utah, Mayor Joy Petro and city council members were also involved in the restoration, and the food truck revealed its new paint job before its reopening at the Philippine Independence Day celebration on Saturday in Salt Lake City.

The owners of the truck thanked those involved in a Facebook post:

“It has been an emotional few days. The love and support that we got from all of you has been deeply heartfelt. My family can’t thank you guys enough. Special thanks to Utah Jazz’s Jordan Clarkson and Dan from Identity graphics for the new look. We want to thank everyone individually in a couple weeks when we have our LOVE celebration in the park and feed the community. Thanks to Mayor Joy Petro, Councilman Clint Morris, Councilman Zach Bloxham, Dustin, everyone in the neighborhood and all of you angels. Love prevails. We are going to have our grand reopening this Saturday at the Philippine independence day celebration in slc.”

On Wednesday, Layton Police announced they are still looking for those responsible for the vandalism and offered a $500 reward for information that leads to their arrest.

Source: Bleacher Report