Della Donne is Done

BY Tay Holloway

The new WNBA season is coming up fast and the draft will be here even faster. The league made some waves this past week just before the free agency period opened. The former number two overall pick and league MVP Elena Della Donne, is who my personal favorite player in the league, stated that she didn’t want to play for the Chicago Sky anymore because of the direction the team was going in and she wanted to be traded. The Sky had leverage because she is a restricted free agent and if any team was to sign her to a offer sheet they could match it.

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Elene had another plan to fight that, because she told the team that she was willing to sit out this season, if that happened, to wait until she became a unrestricted free agent to play somewhere else. The team put her on the market and she was traded to the Washington Mystics. I cant say this is a better team to be on but this team is rebuilding and might have a chance with Della Donne on the team to make it into the playoffs this season.  They do have a electric point guard in Ivory Latta the former UNC star who is still very serviceable, but I believe they will need more wing help to give them a chance to make it to the finals.

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They finished 18-16 last season and was knocked out of the playoffs.  This season they have to make a push over the Atlanta Dream – who should be healthy this year – but free agency is not over and the draft will give them some help, so the chips are not set yet and that’s the reason why the games are played, to see how thing will go. I do wish her the best with her new team and I am hoping that she does great because I think she is the best player in league and deserves a chance at winning a championship.

From ESPN to Fox: Sloppy Seconds Anyone?

By Will Stevenson
Usually when an entity or organization monopolizes the industry, they buy everyone out and only leave you with a few choices here and there to receive their content. Whether it’s a television service, a phone company or an auto parts store, they make sure that all other options don’t come close to matching the resources they have acquired. When we look at the ESPN empire, they have definitely monopolized the industry, but they have somehow allowed their viewers and listeners to access every possible sports niche there is to offer. It seems as if ESPN Radio has landed in every major city nationwide, and locked in every state with at least a station or two that is affiliated with ESPN. Over the years the ESPN Network has had it’s share of Sportscenter hosts, analyst, guests, shows, and radio hosts, but what they have been able to do is replace the faces with no drop-off in ratings or growing power. With their partnership, or being owned by Disney, those that leave ESPN are able to move to CBS, NBC, and ABC seamlessly. Over the past few years, when the contracts go into their final year, the rumors begin to surface and individuals begin to look for work elsewhere; but where else could they go that would have the same shine as ESPN.
And that’s where Fox comes in.
It seems as though Fox has been on the outside looking in when it comes to sports content, although they do have Fox NFL Sunday that usually brings the NFC contenders to table every week. The last time I watched something on a Fox network was “The Best Damn Sports” show and “The Man Show” on FX. If you’ve every watched a show on FX, then you are aware they bend the lines of censorship for mainstream television. The things they are able to show and get away with are very different from what ESPN can do now that they are under Disney’s supervision. After Colin Cowherd’s contract and “ethnic misquote” combined for the right fire, Fox was more than willing to take him on. The Le Batard Show, based out of Miami, slid into his 10am to 1pm time slot and haven’t missed a beat. One person leaves, another shows up and everything keeps rolling. Fox has been trying for years to match the level ESPN has reached, but haven’t been able to take over in numbers, viewers, mentions and downloads. Fox has been able to throw money at previous ESPN employees and provide an atmosphere that will allow them to have less censorship and more freedoms with their shows.
Can Fox grow their brand of talking heads to the heights of ESPN while doing the same exact thing ESPN has done and is already doing? Probably not, but all it takes are a few gasbags saying the right things and the right people paying attention. Television viewers are one thing, but clicks and downloads are something totally different in this social media driven world we now live in.

I seriously think you should jump on this wave!

By Lawrence Edwards

OK, before I get started let me tell you that this isn’t a fad that will quickly fade out, nor is it a get rich quick scheme. It’s simple, I am not forcing you or trying to persuade you to do anything. I just want to share with you something that I know sports enthusiasts every where will enjoy and offer you the opportunity to be apart of something or get ahead of everyone else on a trend that is about to take the world by storm. From Football to Cricket we have something every sports will fall in love with. You have two options: Affiliate or Player. I will go in to great detail about both and most importantly the coming of a game changing sports app by United Games that is going to absolutely blow your mind!

Now what we are talking about here is an app that will let you enjoy your favorite sport interactively while watching the game. This app is going to bring a new dynamic way of playing of enjoying sports. It’s not just going to focus on the major sports but every sport.  The point is to get everyone to enjoy sports better, not just the people who have time for drafts and 4 different fantasy leagues or the ones who are good at selecting the right combination of players in order to enjoy the experience.

Now, as I previously mentioned you have two options to join this wave, either as a player or an affiliate. If you want to just be one of the first to enjoy the experience of this game changing app then sign up as a player for free. You will be a pre-registered player and once the app launches within the next 5 weeks you can begin enjoying your interactive sports experience and start earning some rewards and points. I don’t know about you but once I started playing fantasy football and basketball, the game became THAT much more interesting to me. I began to pay attention to things that I didn’t before. This interactive app will award every real sports fan the same experience but much better – did I mention that some of EA Sports former developers are building this thing? – Get ahead of the trend, this app is coming and it’s going to change the way we enjoy sports forever and it will be the first of it’s kind, share it with your neighbors, share it with your family, if they love sports, chances are they will love this!

Now if you are interested in becoming an affiliate of United Games and getting the opportunity to not only get ahead of the trend but earn some money while doing it, then this the route you want to go. Now let me tell you this isn’t a pyramid scheme or something wild like that, if you don’t want to be an affiliate then you don’t have to. We aren’t trying to recruit people for money, we are just offering an opportunity to earn some income based off of people just playing the game. Now when this was brought to me a few weeks ago I had my initial negative thoughts. I was told that I can become an affiliate for free, feel it out see if I like it and if I do I would have to pay a one time fee of $30 to stay an affiliate and $9.99 a month to maintain my affiliate site and if I don’t just simply cancel no harm done. Now I’m no easy person to convince to join things, so I did my own research before I agreed to sign up for anything. Now I hate selling things, I’m terrible at it, so the fact I didn’t have to sell a product and it was an app – I’m a huge tech junkie – helped me decide to really read up on it. So I did my research and found that this app could really be something special and I don’t have to pay my fee until the app launches in 4-5 weeks at the time of this writing. I figured, what can I lose? I can jump on board playing a new fantasy app and maybe earn some money while doing it. Every time you share the app and someone signs up, whether as an affiliate or a player, and starts buying or earning tokens, you get a piece of the pie, NICE! Another selling point for me was the fact that in order for you to earn income you have to fill out tax form 1099. That right there let me know it was legit. Now United Games is offering this opportunity only up until the app launches in 5 weeks. Once it goes live, the affiliate opportunity will be no longer offered. You will only be able to download and use the app.

Whether you sign up to be a player or an affiliate I can assure you that this app is going to change your sporta experience. The point of this blog is to get the word out that a Giant is coming and to offer, what I believe to be a grand opportunity to be apart of the next big thing. If you like what you heard here today feel free to drop a comment, email me (lawrence.edwards115@gmail.com) or if you got here through my Facebook link, just shoot me a DM and I will happily send you a link to be an affiliate or a free player so you will be all set to go when the app launches. Once you click the link there will be more information for you to read through to get an even better understanding. You’re going to love this!

Here is a one page info sheet you can look at to get more information. Feel free to contact me with questions.

 

Sheryl Swoopes Then and Now.

By Tay Hollowaysheryl-swoopes-1-sized

As a child, I fell in love with the game of basketball. I also admired women during that time frame who played the sport, especially the women on the USA Basketball team. There was one player in particular that caught my attention and that was Sheryl Swoopes. Sheryl Swoopes was born March 25th, 1975 in Texas. She was recruited by the University of Texas Longhorns, but she never played a game for them because she left the school and played two years at South Plains College and then transferred to Texas Tech. She won the NCAA Championship with them in 1993 knocking off Ohio State. In that game she scored 43 points which broke Bill Walton’s long standing record for most points scored by a player in an NCAA Championship game.

In 1993 as well, she won the Naismith College player of the year and WBCA player of the year. Sheryl Swoopes was regarded as the female version of Michael Jordan. She was fast, big, strong, ball handles, great rebounder, dominate defensively and a fierce competitor. She was everything that I wanted to be so I made sure that I would watch her every move. Her basketball IQ seemed to be way above a lot of the players on the team and that made me watch more film to be just like her. This is in a time period where there were not many females that young women could look up to because it was not televised like the NBA. In 1996, Swoopes was on the Olympic team along with Lisa Leslie and Dawn Staley for the Atlanta games. The team won all of their pool games and was still the underdog to Cuba. When they played Cuba, they were down for the most part of the game, but managed to comeback to win the game. They ended the Olympic games by winning the Gold medal and not losing any games.

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In 1997, Swoopes was recruited by the Houston Comets for the first ever season for the WNBA. She had just given birth to her son, Jordan a few weeks’ prior and was still recovering. She signed with the team on the last leg of the season and helped the team win the first ever WNBA Championship. As a member of the Comets for 11 seasons, Swoopes scored over 2,000 points, 500 rebounds and over 200 steals. Her played made her the first and only three time WNBA MVP in 2000, 2002 and 2005. She is also the first and only three time WNBA Defensive player of the year in 200,2002 and 2003. In the same year, Nike shoe company, signed Swoopes to a shoe deal, which made her the first female athlete ever to have their own signature shoe. They named the shoe “Air Swoopes” which are still in circulation today. I myself played in her shoes in games because I wanted to be just like her during my time playing basketball.

In 2005, Swoopes announced she was a lesbian. She was one of the first professional athletes to make that announcement. She became an advocate for LGBT rights and made a lot of headlines just because this was a shock because she was married to a male before but they had divorced. She made several television appearances and magazine covers. Her partner, Alias Scott raised Swoopes son, Jordan but in 2011 they called the relationship off. Currently Swoopes is engaged to a longtime friend who is a male.

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In 2013, Swoopes was hired as the head coach for Loyola Ramblers. The team didn’t have much success, but in 2015 A lot of her players complained that Swoopes was hard on them during games and practice. In 2016, 10 of her players asked the school to release them from their scholarships. An investigation was launched and found out that Swoopes did show them tough love as a coach and was trying to push them to be better as players and as women. The school still fired her and currently she has no other coaching offers. Later this year, Swoopes will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame, which is a well-deserved achievement.

Her overall legacy as a player has been debated between her and Cynthia Cooper as the greatest women’s basketball player ever. I might be a little bias, but I think Sheryl Swoopes is the GOAT and there will never be a better all-around dominate player like her again. Players like her only come one a lifetime and she sure was very special not only to the WNBA, but little girls coming up as a leader and a role model.

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Collision Course in the WNBA

 

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By Shawn Buck

There is a showdown looming in the WNBA. The Minnesota Lynx and Los Angeles Sparks, the two top teams, are on a collision course to meet on June 21.  At the present time both teams are undefeated. They both have one more game before they face off and if they win those, they will have a combined record of 23-0.  It should be a great regular season clash.

The Sparks (10-0) are rolling right now.  Their leader, Candace Parker, is playing at an elite level as always. The two-time regular season MVP has been business as usual averaging 15.6 points, 7.0 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game.  She may be motivated from getting left off of this year’s Olympic team.  If this is the case, her team has rallied around her. They have been outstanding.  NNeka Ogwumike is playing like an MVP.  She is the team’s leading scorer and rebounder at 17.4 points and 8.9 rebounds per game. She recently broke the WNBA record for field goals made in a game without a miss by making all 12 of her shots against the Dallas Wings.  Alana Beard is providing veteran leadership; she is also second in the league in steals at 2.2 per game.  Kristi Toliver is second in the league in 3-point percentage at 48%.  Unlike the past Sparks teams, they are finishing games and not allowing teams to come back on them.  At 10-0 they are off to their best start in history.

 

Minnesota (11-0) on the other hand has been, well…. Minnesota.  They recently broke their own WNBA record by winning 11 in a row to start the season. The Lynx has won the WNBA championship three of the last five years.  They have been to the finals four of the last five years and look like they will be a favorite to go back.  It’s no coincidence that their run started after drafting Maya Moore in 2011.  Moore is third in the league in scoring at 20.2 per game and fourth in assists at 4.9.  She has helped, especially from Sylvia Fowles and Seimone Augustus.  These two are also Olympic teammates of hers.  Fowles is averaging 15.2 points and 8.6 rebounds per game.  Augustus is averaging 12 points a game.
From a statistical standpoint, these team’s matchup well.  The Lynx is first in the league in scoring at 87.0 per game and the Sparks are second at 86.8.  The Sparks are first in the league in points allowed at 69.9 points per game and the Lynx are second at 74.3.  Much like fans were looking forward to the NBA regular season matchup between the Warriors and Spurs, the anticipation for this game should be just as high.  The Lynx and Sparks played in a very competitive first round playoff series last season.  The Lynx won 2-1.  On Tuesday, June 21, it won’t be a playoff game, but it should be fun. And just in case that’s not enough for you, three days later, they will play again. In the words of Terrell Owens, “get your popcorn ready”.

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Sore Losers

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What is a sore loser? A sore loser is a person that can’t accept the fact that their team lost. Instead of facing the music they create some great excuse on why they lost. We all have talked to, read comments or personally know a sore loser.

The very first sore loser excuse blames the refs. The blame refs excuse is the most used excuses out there being used by sore losers. Some people really think the refs were paid under the table or they like the other team more.

Stop the madness people, you all can’t be serious, but they are. How does one come up with such crazy accusations? How can they prove this theory? The answer is they can’t prove nothing. It would be easier to say my team blew it and move on. Instead, we get an essay on how the refs helped.

Another excuse a sore loser uses they cheated. Not every team is the Patriots and Tom Brady. When sore losers explain to me how a team cheats I sit there trying to hold back laughter. There are ones that are really serious with their claims. They will make a video, first you will get what you are seeing and then they will say look at this. Don’t forget some will circle where they think the cheating happened. Here is a video if you don’t believe me, here is an example

This man explains that the Patriots got more time on the clock versus the Steelers. I can’t tell you how many people shared this. The proof does look credible in this particular video, but not in the majority of them.

Last but not least the greatest excuse sore losers use is conspiracy theories. Yes, you read that right conspiracy theories. These sore losers who faithfully will watch sports and afterwards are convinced that all games are fixed. The NFL, NBA, MLB and other major sports are not the WWE. They do not know the outcome of the game. They will try to convince you with examples like why the Browns or Eagles don’t have any rings or why the Cubs haven’t won a World Series since 1908. They won’t explain how the team as a whole is bad but they will tell in a forever long conversation how a certain league is fixed.

In conclusion, if you read this and you have said I do that to any of these excuses. There is a good chance you’re a sore loser too. Do us (the logical fans) a favor. Stop with all the excuses, we don’t believe you.

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Candace Parker Snubbed!    By, Shawn Buck

When the 2016 Women’s National Team was announced, the Los Angeles Sparks Candace Parker was not on it. The question that comes to the mind of most that follow women’s basketball is, Why? Was it her age? She’s 30 but the team has a 37 year old in Tamika Catchings and a 34 year old in Diana Taurasi. They also have Sue Bird and Sylvia Fowles, who are 35 and 30 respectively.

  
Have Parker’s skills diminished? After sitting out the first 16 games of the 2015 WNBA season to rest, Parker averaged 19.4 points, 6.3 assists, 1.9 steals and 1.8 blocks per game. The Sparks were 3-15 without her and 11-5 with her. They came within a game of beating the eventual champion Minnesota Lynx in the playoffs.  Was it Geno Auriemma? He is the head coach of the Women’s National team and also the UConn Huskies. His rivalry with Pat Summitt and the Tennessee Volunteers is well known. The friction between the two programs has become so bitter that don’t play each other anymore. Maybe he wanted to load up with more of his former players. There are 5 former Huskies on the team. Were there too many players at her position? Parker can play all 5 positions at a high level. She can play in the post as well as on the perimeter. She is also a good defensive player. Whatever the reason, it’s hard to justify not having Candace Parker on the olympic team.

When elite athletes turn 30 or close to it, sometimes they need extra motivation to keep playing at the top level. Candace is already driven to get that WNBA championship that has eluded her. This olympic snub has enhanced her desire.  

The Sparks opened their 2016 regular season on Sunday May 15 with a 96-66 demolition of the Seattle Storm. A Storm team that includes two 2016 Olympians, Bird and Breanna Stewart. Parker had 34 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals. Candace won’t admit it but from this first game it appears she has a chip on her shoulder. She’s on a mission and the rest of the WNBA better take notice.