In this clip, Eddy Curry talked about some of the earlier days in his career before running into cardiac problems. Eddy described the situation as a stressful one as his career hung in the balance. He recalled the NBA offering him $400K annually for 50 years if he took a DNA test that showed he was more likely to develop heart problems. However, Eddy explained how his agent at the time showed him the negative precedent he would be setting for future Black players.
The US men’s and women’s soccer teams will share prize money from their respective World Cups equally in a historic agreement announced on Wednesday.
US Soccer and the unions for the two teams reached the deal during negotiations for their new collective bargaining agreements, which have now been ratified.
“The accomplishments in this CBA are a testament to the incredible efforts of WNT players on and off the field,” said USWNT player and USWNT players’ association president Becky Sauerbrunn. “The gains we have been able to achieve are both because of the strong foundation laid by the generations of WNT players that came before the current team and through our union’s recent collaboration with our counterparts at the [men’s players union] and leadership at US Soccer.
“We hope that this agreement and its historic achievements in not only providing for equal pay but also in improving the training and playing environment for national team players will similarly serve as the foundation for continued growth of women’s soccer both in the United States and abroad.”
USMNT defender Walker Zimmerman, who is a member of the men’s union leadership group, also welcomed the deal. “There are tough conversations, but at the end of the day, it is the right thing to do,” Zimmerman said. “It’s something that [the US women’s team players] deserve. It’s something that they have fought for so hard, and, to be honest, sometimes it does feel like we had just kind of come alongside of them and had been a little late.”
Fifa’s prize money for the men’s and women’s World Cups is unequal. The bonus pool for this year’s men’s World Cup in Qatar is $440m, while the prize money for the women’s tournament in Australia in 2023 is $60m. Under the new agreement, the unions for the US men’s and women’s teams will share the prize money from the 2022 and 2023 World Cups. The US men have already qualified for Qatar 2022, while the women’s team are the reigning women’s champions and are heavy favourites to book their place for Australia 2023 later this summer.
World Cup prize money was not the only area where equal deals were reached. Shares of ticket sales will now be equal, as will win bonuses. Some aspects of income and benefits will differ between the teams. The men will not share their $2.5m bonus for qualifying for this year’s World Cup as it was part of the their previous CBA.
“This is a truly historic moment. These agreements have changed the game forever here in the United States and have the potential to change the game around the world,” said US Soccer president Cindy Parlow Cone, who is also a former USWNT player. “US Soccer and the USWNT and USMNT players have reset their relationship with these new agreements and are leading us forward to an incredibly exciting new phase of mutual growth and collaboration as we continue our mission to become the preeminent sport in the United States.”
The US women’s team has long fought for equal treatment with the men’s team. In December 2020 they reached an agreement with US Soccer over equal work conditions with their male counterparts. The players were granted the same conditions as the US men’s team in areas such as travel, hotel accommodation, the right to play on grass rather than artificial turf, and staffing. Then, in February, the team agreed a $24m settlement that ended a six-year legal battle over equal pay.
Source: The Guardian
How the former hoops star went from NBA outcast to international trailblazer.
With its 75th anniversary season getting down to crunch time, the National Basketball Association has reintroduced a familiar logo from its past for the championship series.
The NBA announced on Wednesday, April 13, that it would bring the iconic script font back to a reimagined NBA Finals logo this year. A cursive font was used in variations of the Finals logo from 1986 to 1995 and from 2004 to 2017.
“The NBA Finals serves as the culmination of our 75th Anniversary Season as we celebrate the league’s past, present and future,” said NBA chief marketing officer Kate Jhaveri in a press release on the league’s website. “Highlighted by the return of our familiar Finals script font, back by popular demand, our new logo pays homage to our league’s history and looks forward to what’s ahead.”
The modernized Finals logo puts the script font front and center, with a rendering of the Larry O’Brien Trophy behind. Unlike past iterations, the new script font does not feature a shooting star crossing the F and forming the dot on the I in “Finals.” It does, however, have some small gold flourishes at either end.
The new logo “honor[s] the league’s 75-year history while looking forward to the future,” according to the press release. “The identity also includes an updated black and gold color palette to complement the trophy and celebrate the pinnacle of the NBA’s season.”
The Larry O’Brien trophy in the new Finals does bear some differences from the trophy that has been given out up to now. The trophy in the logo has a circular base (as opposed to rectangular), and it appears to have a longer cylinder with more netting details and a different orientation for the basketball. There has been no word yet from the NBA if the trophy itself is being revamped this year; it could just be artistic license in the end.
The 2022 NBA Finals will tip off on Thursday, June 2.
It was fairly safe to assume the XFL was officially dead when it managed to crash and burn in the spring of 2019 even quicker than it did during its inaugural season in 2001 (which obviously had just a little bit to do with a certain health crisis that took the world by storm shortly after the league rebooted).
However, that didn’t turn out to be the case, as Dwayne Johnson was among a group of investors who purchased the XFL’s remaining assets in a fire sale in 2020 with plans to bring it back from the dead once again.
As things currently stand, XFL 3.0 is slated to make its grand debut in 2023. However, we were treated to one of the most significant updates so far on Wednesday when Johnson dropped a hype video that was capped off with a first look at the organization’s new logo.
Most people seemed to respond to the development with a big ol’ shrug, but there were plenty of others who noticed a similarity between that logo and one used by AXE body spray—including the brand itself.While they’re definitely not identical, it’s pretty hard to ignore the similarities when the two logos are placed side-by-side. However, if we’re viewing the AXE Twitter account as the definitive authority on the manner, it appears the brand has harnessed the “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” mentality.
“im honored tbh, think it looks great”
As always, AXE remains the epitome of classy.
Transgender swimmer Lia Thomas — the biological male who competes on the women’s swimming team for the University of Pennsylvania — won a 500-yard freestyle this week, at the 2022 NCAA Championships.
UPenn celebrated the news, calling Thomas “the first Quaker female swimmer to win an NCAA individual title.” In addition, CNN hailed Thomas as the first transgender athlete to win an NCAA Division 1 title.
Thomas set a “program-record time” of 4:33.24, more than one second faster than second-place swimmer Emma Weyant, who earned a time of 4:34.99.
The UPenn swimmer has pushed back against those who note that, biologically, Thomas is male.
“The very simple answer is that I’m not a man,” the athlete told Sports Illustrated. “I’m a woman, so I belong on the women’s team. Trans people deserve that same respect every other athlete gets.”
One USA Swimming official, Cynthia Millen, decided in late 2021 to resign in protest after more than 30 years in the industry. Millen took issue with the rules at the NCAA and USA Swimming that allowed Thomas to compete against biological females.
“I thought, ‘This is wrong. This betrays all of this fairness,’” she told CBN. “I mean, if a swimmer was wearing an illegal swimsuit we would tell the swimmer ‘go change your swimsuit. That’s not the right fabric. It’s giving you an advantage.’”
Among the complainants is the group Concerned Women for America, which filed legal paperwork with the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights against UPenn, claiming that permitting Thomas to compete on the women’s team violates Title IX.
“We plead for you to issue clear, decisive guidance to clarify the law and prevent colleges and university athletic programs from violating women’s rights by allowing biological male athletes to compete in the women’s category of sport,” stated the court filing. “Protecting all female student-athletes from this type of injustice is the very essence of OCR’s mission to ensure equal access to educational opportunities and benefits the law requires under Title IX.”
The American Principles Project, a conservative think tank, also spoke out against Thomas.
“Lia Thomas spent 21 years of his life as a man,” tweeted the group. “He started competing against women in swimming this year and became a national champion. Our daughter’s sports are not a plan B for failed male athletes.”
Source: CBN News
In this clip, Gary Payton talked about receiving the news that Kobe Bryant passed away in a helicopter crash and recounted his initial reaction to the news. Gary reflected on his relationship with Kobe and how it extended beyond the game of basketball. To hear more, check out the clip above.
With the Winter Olympics in full swing in Beijing, two athletes, skier Eileen Gu, and figure skater Zhu Yi, have been trending in two different social media spheres.
Both Californian-born athletes have been receiving intense backlash for changing their nationalities to compete for China.
Gu, an 18-year-old first-year Stanford student and San Francisco native, made history as the youngest-ever Olympic freestyle ski champion. Most Americans have been celebrating online, but conservative commentators are in an uproar over her decision to “switch sides” and win the gold for China.
“It’s ungrateful for her to turn her back on the country that not just raised her, but turned her into a world-class skier,” a right-wing podcaster said in an interview with Fox News’ Tucker Carlson. “I hope Eileen Gu likes living in China, what a traitor. Born in San Francisco, CA snd competes for Chinese money. Get out!” wrote someone on Twitter.
Gu’s response to the haters? “Cry ab it,” she wrote on TikTok after a commenter asked why she didn’t compete for the US.
Zhu Yi, also known as Beverly Zhu, is a 19-year-old Angeleno who also gave up her US citizenship to compete.
“so so so honored to be representing Team China at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics ✨,” she wrote on Instagram on Jan. 28. “Especially after having a couple rough years, I’m so grateful for those who helped me push past the negative thoughts and injuries; helping me grow throughout this journey.”
But the negativity was just getting started. Chinese social media platforms were ablaze with a now-deleted viral theory that she used nepotism to qualify for the team over a Chinese-born skater. Others blasted Zhu for her inability to speak fluent Mandarin while representing China.
“Is she really patriotic?” one commented. “How is one person’s dream bigger than the country? It’s ass backward.” The criticisms came from all sides, with someone commenting on her TikTok this week: “Enjoy China. The bastion of freedom, right? Turncoat.”
Then when Zhu fell during competition, #ZhuYiMistake, #ShameOnZhuYi and #ZhuYiFellDown began trending on Weibo.
The social media reaction to the athletes changing nationalities surprised William Tran, vice president of the Pasadena Figure Skating Club and a figure skating judge.
“It’s completely within the rules, and something many sports are used to,” he told BuzzFeed News. “The United States has had incredible athletes from other countries represent our team, and many athletes have found success representing others.”
Zhu and Gu aren’t the only foreign-born Olympians representing China. Jake Chelios, the white son of National Hockey League star Chris Chelios, will be playing as Jie Ke Kai Liao Si on the Chinese men’s hockey team. Chelios, who is from Illinois and played hockey for a few years in China, told the Associated Press that his new name was “cool” and part of the experience of playing abroad.
“Since I’ve been over here, everything’s kind of new for me, and that’s the exciting part about playing overseas,” he said. “I know two or three words [in Chinese], but I took six years of Spanish in high school. I couldn’t even learn that, so I didn’t even try.”
Former NHL goaltender Jeremy Smith, a white man from Michigan, (competing as Jie Rui Mi Shi Mi Si) will also be competing for China. Most of the roster for China’s women’s hockey team shares heritage in the country, but have been imported from Canada and the United States.
But none of them have had the backlash experienced by Gu and Zhu.
Nationality changes have been occurring since the 1970s, Tran said, allowing athletes to compete on a world stage with more international opportunity that they may not otherwise have. “It’s not always that you’re giving up one citizenship for the other,” he said. “Some nations don’t allow for dual citizenship, but many do.”
One Chinese American user wrote on Twitter, “We’ll always be accepted as a fellow compatriot by Chinese people as long as we maintain cultural ties, while Yanks will never see us as true Americans. Haters are simply proving us right.”
I find this to be the most honest part of the discourse. “As long as we maintain cultural ties” is part of the largest criticism against Zhu, whose ability to speak Mandarin fluently has been hotly contested, while people on social media have stayed fairly quiet about a player like Chelios’s open disinterest in learning the language because he has no Chinese heritage.
But maintaining cultural ties for children of naturalized citizens in the US is not always a matter of choice. Holidays such as Lunar New Year are not yet federally recognized, meaning most states do not implement school holidays or time off work. Generational poverty and difficult living conditions for some families mean paying for language school and having regular cultural education is both a financial and time-scarce burden. And after all of that, choosing to maintain cultural ties can be dangerous, resulting in hate or violence. Fully embracing one’s own identity hinges on conditions people cannot always meet — not by desire, but circumstance.
Of course, there are other factors. Gu achieved a historic win, while Zhu did not. Skating has long been the most-followed sport at the Winter Olympics, so its athletes will tend to draw more buzz (Japan’s Yuzuru Hanyu may not have won any medals but his outfits won TikTok). And the long-brewing tension between the US and China makes nationality change a more politically sensitive issue than, for example, one skier’s adjustment from Britain to Jamaica.
The jump to criticize Zhu’s and Gu’s individual patriotism toward either the US or China feels like it was never about nationality change. Instead, the online chatter seems like an opportunity to use young women’s actions to tell others who can and can’t claim identities they were born into, and to brand certain nationalities by a set of baseless rules that only further a particularly hateful perspective.
There is intense pressure on these athletes to win. Figure skating costs anywhere between $35,000 to $50,000 per year, while alpine skiing can cost up to $30,000. “Most of these sports gain most media and fan attention during the Olympics. It’s a once in a four year opportunity to be showcased,” said Tran. “If you keep that in mind, you might understand why someone might make sacrifices in order to compete there.”
Are we really going to bully young women for wanting to do well? If I were an overachieving teen desperate to compete, I’d consider changing my nationality too.
Or as Gu said in a press conference about the criticism: “If people don’t like me, that’s their loss — they’ll never win the Olympics.”
Social media users are criticizing American-born Eileen Gu – who won a gold medal in skiing competing for China – for taking advantage of posting on Instagram, which is banned in the country.
The block first started in 2014 amid the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong as a means for the Chinese government to control how its citizens use western social media
Gu, 18, who was born in California to an American father and a Chinese mother (who is also her coach) and took home gold in the women’s big freeski, was taken to task for her use of the photo app.
‘Why can you use Instagram and millions of Chinese people from mainland cannot,’ one user fired off at Gu in a screenshot that made the rounds on Chinese social app Weibo.
‘[A]nyone can download a vpn its literally free on the App Store,’ said Gu, referring to virtual private networks (VPN), which are designed to get around the web restrictions of various countries.
Some were irate in response.
‘Literally, I’m not ‘anyone.’ Literally, it’s illegal for me to use a VPN. Literally, it’s not fxxking free at all,’ one user replied.
China has blocked several VPN services in recent years, even going as far as to criminalize those who use them to get around the ‘Great Firewall.’
In November, Beijing introduced rules that would seek to ban VPN providers.
The screenshot was eventually censored on Weibo after it had been shared over 3,000 times.
The original post still exists, but the screenshot of her VPN comment went blank.
‘What is there to brag about a country where [that screenshot] can’t see the light of day?’ another Weibo user asked.
The IOC declined to comment on the situation. Rule 50 of the IOC handbook permits athletes to speak freely on matters of their choosing outside the confines of competition.
Gu, nicknamed the ‘Snow Princess’, amassed an army of cynics when she spurned Team USA to represent China at the Beijing Games – but she told critics after her win: ‘I’m just as American as I am Chinese’.
As Gu won her gold medal, praise for the San Franciscan quite literally overwhelmed the Chinese internet.
Of the top 10 trending topics on the platform on Weibo at the time, five were dedicated to adoration for the 18-year-old champion.
‘Gu Ailing is a genius young woman right?’ was one trending topic referencing her Chinese name.
‘Dad was Harvard, Mom was Peking University, Stanford, Grandmother was an athlete. She’s beautiful and classy,’ said one post recirculated 86,000 times.
The teenager, who is undoubtedly the Winter Olympics poster girl after her Vogue magazine and Paris fashion appearances, did not allow her glittering lifestyle to overshadow her sporting prowess.
However, Gu has remained evasive about her attempts to toe the line between the United States and China.
China does not allow dual nationality, and state media have previously reported that the 18-year-old renounced her U.S. citizenship after she became a Chinese national at the age of 15.
Gu would not confirm that on Tuesday.
‘So I grew up spending 25-30% (of my time) in China. I’m fluent in Mandarin and English and fluent culturally in both,’ she answered, when asked if she was still an American citizen.
‘So coming here, I really feel there was a sense of coming home. I feel just as American as Chinese. I don’t feel I’m taking advantage of one or another. They understand that my mission is to foster a connection between countries and not a divisive force.’
When the reporter asked again, the news conference moderator interjected: ‘Next question, please.’
The fashion model and incoming Stanford University student whose Weibo following has ballooned to almost three million from just under two million on Monday, says she feels at home in China.
‘There’s like a tower here you can see from the top of the course. And I’m also seeing it from my house in Beijing,’ she explained, where her face is ubiquitous in advertising.
Gu told her critics: ‘I am not trying to keep anyone happy. I am an 18 year old girl living my life and trying to have a great time.’
She added: ‘It doesn’t really matter if other people are happy or not because I feel as though I am doing my best.
‘I’m enjoying the entire process, and I’m using my voice to create as much positive change as I can for the voices who will listen to me in an area that is personal and relevant to myself.
‘I know that I have a good heart and I know my reasons for making the decisions I do are based on a greater common interest and something I feel is for the greater good.
‘If other people don’t really believe that that’s where I’m coming from, then that just reflects that they do not have the empathy to empathize with a good heart, perhaps because they don’t share the same kind of morals that I do and, in that sense, I’m not going to waste my time trying to placate people who are, one, uneducated and, two, probably never going to experience the kind of joy and gratitude and love that I have the great fortune to experience on a daily basis.’
She said her critics did not share the empathy she had and that she refused to bow down to them.
Gu is not the only American competing for China in Beijing. Two members of the Chinese men’s hockey team – including Jake Chelios, son of Hockey Hall of Famer Chris Chelios – are also born and raised in the US.
Source: Daily Mail