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THE WORD | From Chicago to LA, 4 Chicago Prep Stars will play for the LA Lakers

The NBA preseason tipped off over the weekend. The highly anticipated game which featured the Lakers vs the Warriors. The Warriors' ugly loss to open their preseason slate was a predictable one, though. The player of the evening was Anthony Davis. Davis was brilliant in his 18 minutes, scoring 22 points and pulling down 10 rebounds.

The former Chicago prep star was the highlight of the evening, but it wasn’t until I seen the tweets below, that I noticed that there are 4 Chicago Highschool prep stars on the lakers roster.

Along with Davis, Chicago has produced several other NBA stars from the current generation, led by Dwyane Wade and Derrick Rose. Davis mentioned this summer that Chicago is the “Mecca” of basketball. That comment probably made some New Yorkers angry, but no one can doubt the fact Chicago produces some elite talent.

Anthony Davis

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Year 8️⃣🔒

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Dominant force on offense + defense. Can do everything on the court. Anthony Davis averaged 32 points, 22 rebounds, and 7 blocks as a senior playing in the Chicago Public League's Blue Division. Anthony Davis committed to Kentucky in August 2010 when he was at Perspectives Charter School. Davis was ranked #1 ESPN, #1 Scout, #2 Rivals.

Javale Mcgee

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Lakeshow ... RUN IT BACK!

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McGee was born in Flint, Michigan, and attended two high schools in Michigan, Detroit Country Day School and Providence Christian, before transferring to Hales Franciscan High School in Chicago. McGee received special mention All-State by the Chicago Tribune his senior season. According to Hales Franciscan coach Gary London, McGee's natural position in college was ideally small forward, and he could play both forward spots. McGee went on to play in college for two season at Nevada.

Zack Norvell Jr

Zack Norvell closed out his high school career at Simeon Career Academy by winning a Chicago city title. He was the school's top scorer since Jabari Parker (teammates for one season). There is always a lot of attention placed on Simeon locally and nationally, as one of the leading public league basketball powerhouses. The players receive accolades but also face a great deal of scrutiny too. Zack rose to meet each challenge. According to the Chicago Sun Times, Norvell averaged 18 points, eight rebounds and four assists his senior season, leading Simeon to a 30-4 record (Illinois 4A 3rd place) playing a national schedule.

Talen Horton-Tucker

Former Iowa State guard Talen Horton-Tucker was one of the MOST UNDERRATED players in the 2018 Class coming out of Highschool. The 6'6 Guard/Forward led Simeon (IL) to a 29-4 record while playing a tough national schedule. Horton-Tuckers averaged 20.5 PPG, 8.7 RPG, and 4.8 APG in his senior campaign with the Wolverines!

THE WORD | Anthony Davis & Derrick Rose to sponsor 4000 Chicago kids to watch Chicago Football Classic at Soldier Field

Anthony Davis and Derrick Rose, two of the best basketball players to make it out of Chicago, are always giving back to their community.

Los Angeles Lakers superstar big man Anthony Davis and Detroit Pistons point guard Derrick Rose will sponsor 4,000 students from Englewood — the neighborhood they grew up in Chicago — to watch Howard University play Hampton University on September 14 at Soldier Field.

Now in its 22nd year, the Chicago Football Classic aims to bring 15,000 students to Soldier Field to watch Howard University play Hampton University on Sep. 14. Each year, the game showcases some of the country’s top HBCUs both on and off the field, with a college fair designed to encourage students to “achieve their personal best in school and beyond.”

Two NBA players from Chicago — the Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis and Detroit Pistons’ Derrick Rose — will sponsor 4,000 students from Englewood. Former NBA player and Chicago native Mark Aguirre will pay the cost of transportation to the game for pre-selected students. Syd Stone of Chicago Sun-Times

THE WORD | “I am a Hall of Famer” - Derrick Rose

Derrick Rose might not make the Basketball Hall of Fame, but he explained Friday on The Stephen A. Smith Show that he doesn’t care, he is a Hall Of Famer when it comes to the expectations he has lived up to.

"Imagine being 12 or 13 and everywhere you go, people are putting their burdens on you, like, 'You're gonna be the man to make it,'" Rose explained.

The Chicago native was the #1 overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, after leading the Memphis University Tigers to the NCAA Championship against the Kansas Jayhawks. Derrick aka “Pooh” as many Chicagoans refer to him as is one of the city’s biggest success story. Not to many urban Chicago athletes have achieved the success that Derrick has had. The Simeon High school graduate was a prep basketball star since he was in 8th grade.

The Youngest MVP award winner in NBA history career was plagued by knees injuries. According to Bleacher Report, Basketball Reference gives Rose just a 10.5 percent chance of being a Hall of Famer. Rose is not done he feels like he has more to accomplish like, like when a NBA Championship.

THE WORD | Roc Nation, NFL to Donate $400,000 to Chicago Charities

The NFL and Roc Nation will donate $400,000 to the Better Boys Foundation Family Services and Crusher's Club. Accordingly to TMZ the two organizations were hand picked by JAY-Z's Roc Nation. Meek Mill and Megan Trainor will visit Crusher's Club, whose mission is to help Chicago youth “restore their lives and improve their neighborhoods.” Appearance from Rapsody and Vic Mensa as well.

The Chicago organizations will set the blueprint for how Roc Nation, the NFL, and the Players Coalition aim to Inspire Change across each NFL city.

A free concert is taking place today , September 5th in the city’s Grant Park that will feature Meek Mill, Meghan Trainor and Rapsody; it is the first in the “Songs of the Season” concert series that was announced last month at a press conference held by Jay-Z and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announcing the partnership.

According to the source said that this event will be the first in a planned Inspire Change series that will make similar donations in each NFL city. Songs of the Season is a season-long initiative in which selected musicians will create and deliver a song to be integrated in all NFL promotions each month. The songs will debut during an in-game broadcast and will be simultaneously released to all digital streaming platforms worldwide. All proceeds from the songs will go toward Inspire Change.

Check out some pictures and dope moments of Meek Mill and Rapsody Performing at the NFL kick off in grant park.

THE WORD | Man accused of killing family, including toddler captured!

A man accused of killing a wife, son and grandmother in Virginia has been caught.

It’s being reported that 18 year old, Matthew Thomas Bernard is the killer in the crime. The three victims are the wife, son and mother in law to Tampa Bay Rays prospect Blake Bivens. Biven is said to be Bernard brother in law.

The murders come as a shock to the town of the family however, the internet is flabbergasted at the video of the arrest of Matthew Bernard.

In the short recording you can see the suspect chasing officers and choking a grounds keeper. This video has raised many questions, about the treatment of Mr. Bernard.

As we’ve seen in recent years unarmed Black men and women have been killed for refused or protested arrest. Is this video proof of the privilege White men have?

THE WORD | Bryan Michael Cox Claims Jay-Z Told Jermaine Dupri to Turn Down a Similar NFL Deal

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Hip Hop Icon Jay-Z has been all over the news recently after holding a press conference with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announcing a multi-year partnership with the professional sports league, in which the 49-year-old rapper will consult on the halftime show and work with the league’s activism campaign, Inspire Change.
The controversy around the business move is not only centered around the NFL’s problematic relationship with its players of color, but also JAY Z’s own public statements damning the organization, even declining an invite to perform at the Super Bowl. 

“I said no to the Superbowl, you need me, I don't need you
Every night we in the endzone, tell the NFL we in stadiums too” Jayz. The Carters APESHIT

Shortly after the news initially broke, Grammy award-winning songwriter/producer Bryan Michael Cox – credited with some of the biggest R&B hits of the last 20 years (Mariah Carey, Usher, Mary J. Blige) revealed that his longtime friend and fellow Urban hitmaker Jermaine Dupri was offered a deal similar to Hov’s by the NFL a year ago.

Cox says Jay personally contacted JD and told him to decline the very deal (to co-produce the Super Bowl) he’s now signed.  View Cox’s remarks below and let us know what you think.

SKIP TO THE 14:35 MARK TO HEAR COX’S REMARKS:

THE WORD | JAY-Z and Roc Nation has inked a deal with the N.F.L.

Just a year ago, on the “Apes- - -” single, Jay-Z said, “I said no to the Super Bowl/You need me/I don’t need you.”Turns out, he might be right about the league needing him.

The NFL is forming a partnership with HipHop mogul Jay-Z. This deal will put him in charge of managing some entertainment options for the league and will tie into the sport’s social justice endeavors.

The partnership will make Roc Nation a co-producer of the Super Bowl halftime show, but does not contain a provision for him to be the halftime performer.

“He was very quick to say that he does not want this to be about him performing, that it was broader than that,” Goodell said in an interview. “It quickly went beyond that. Do I hope he’ll perform in the Super Bowl sometime in the next several years? Yes. But I think we’ll all know if that time comes. He’ll know in particular.” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said.

Jay Z believes that Roc Nation will have the freedom under the partnership to produce the kind of entertainment that it wants. In a quote from the Washington Post he said the following

“I think we have autonomy,” Carter said. “I anticipate that there will be a lot of — with any big organization, in this building right here we have internal problems. Anything that’s new is going to go through its growing pains. We put what we want to do on the table. The NFL agreed to it. So we’re gonna proceed with that as if we have a partnership.”

In terms of the activism portion of the agreement, it will be tied to the league’s current “Inspire Change” program announced in January. That initiative, which works with the Players Coalition, focuses on education and economic advancement, police and community relations and criminal justice reform.

THE WORD | NCAA creates ridiculous ‘Rich Paul Rule’ for agents and potential NBA prospects

The NCAA's New Agent Regulations Sure Look Like They're Targeting Lebron James agent and best friend, Rich Paul.

One year ago, the NCAA announced college basketball players testing the NBA draft waters would be able to seek the guidance of an agent without losing their eligibility. On Tuesday, the NCAA issued a memo fine-tuning the restrictions around which agents athletes are allowed to hire.

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A underclassman can work with an agent and retain his eligibility should he decide to return to school provided that the agent:

  • Has a bachelor’s degree

  • Has been certified by the NBAPA for the last three years

  • Passes an in-person exam administered at the NCAA national office in Indianapolis

Paul is the 37-year-old behind Klutch Sports. Paul started to build a relationship with James from there and leveraged it into a thriving representation business for sports and entertainment. A clientele that includes Athletes such as Anthony Davis.

Unlike most agents, Rich Paul is African-American. Unlike most agents, he didn’t go to college. He was too busy building an empire.

Paul took college classes at Cleveland State and Akron before dropping out to work with Lebron James. He has since been given an honorary degree from Cleveland State. Paul eventually began working for super agent Leon Rose at CAA when he realized he could do this himself. He and Lebron then started Klutch sports

”I had great teaching,” Paul says. “Working with Nike and at CAA, that’s the equivalent of going to Michigan Law School and to MIT.” In a 2012 ESPN profile, Paul put his schooling in perspective:

Many believe the NCAA's 'Rich Paul Rule' is all about protecting its money and power. Check our the reactions from the NBA Players

THE WORD | Is It fair to say the Raptors won because of injuries?

The Raptors clinched their first title in franchise history with a Game 6 clinching win over the Warriors to complete their fairy tale playoff run. The Raptors are a great story, but many such as FS1 Skip Bayless still thinks there’s no way they win the title without the avalanche of injuries to the Warriors.

With KD going down after playing in one quarter of Game 5, and Klay Thompson going down in Game 6 with a torn ACL, it was injuries that decided the series. It may not be a popular take in Canada, but it’s truth. Others believe the same argument could of been made for the Warriors back in 2015, when Lebron James’s team was handicapped due to Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love being sidelined because of Injuries.

THE WORD | Was Kevin Durant ‘misdiagnosed? Are The Warriors to blame for Achilles injury?

After 32 days of rehab, Kevin Durant was finally cleared to play in Game 5 of the NBA Finals, but during the 2nd quarter of the game he suffered an Achilles injury. The backlash to the Warriors letting Durant play was immediate, and president Bob Myers noted in his press conference after Game 5 he understood the need to seek out someone to blame for Durant’s devastating injury.

The discussion over the last two days has been all over the map, with debates about whether the Warriors should have been more protective of Durant, who as a competitor would naturally want to play. Some speculated Golden State’s medical staff misdiagnosed the injury, and others felt Durant had been pressured to come back too soon by internal and external chatter. It was hard not to wonder if he’d been rushed back.

THE WORD | Magic Explains Why He Resigned from the lakers

Earlier this year, Magic Johnson stepped down from his position as the president of the Los Angeles Lakers. Now he is finally providing the world with an explanation to why he resigned. During an interview with ESPN’s “First Take” he talked about his tenure as an executive for the NBA team, divulging details about what happened behind closed doors. He specifically talked about his relationship with Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka, who he said betrayed him.

“So I started getting calls from my friends outside of basketball, saying those things now were said to them, outside of basketball now, just not in the Lakers office anymore,” Johnson continued. “If you are going to talk betrayal, it's only with Rob.”

Things really heated up when he wasn’t allowed to fire Luke Walton , and hire his own Head Coach. He said his decision was thwarted by Lakers COO Tim Harris. Thats when he noticed he wasn’t in full control of Basketball operations to make final decisions.

“The straw that broke the camel's back was I wanted to fire Luke Walton,” Johnson said. “I got things happening that were being said behind my back. I don't have the power I thought I had to make decisions. And I told them, when it is not fun for me, when I think I don't have the decision-making power I thought I had, I got to step aside.”


THE WORD | Michael Rapaport Hates on Maverick Carter's USC Commencement Speech

On Friday May 12, Maverick Carter gave the commencement address at USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and welcomed the more than 900 graduates to the real world.

Carter used a blend of personal anecdotes, learned advice, and inspirational material to encourage the new grads to aim beyond the safe, low-risk career path and always bet big on themselves. The lessons he imparted came from his experiences of working with LeBron James, but also growing up around his grandmother’s basement casino. Between the two, Carter said he learned how to measure risk versus reward, instantaneously calculating each decision based on upside and downside, and being prepared to take a risk.

Michael Rapaport took to Twitter to chime in with his own thoughts, basically saying he didn’t approve.

Rapaport posted a portion of Carter’s speech along with the tweet: “Ok GRADUATES, this year’s USC Commencement Speaker... LeBron James best friend. GTFOH.” Needless to say, members of LeBron’s team saw the tweet and chime in with their own thoughts. Jimmy Spencer—VP of Uninterrupted retweeted Rapaport and said “This the same Rapaport who’s been trying to work with us?” This prompted LeBron James to respond with a bunch of laughing emojis. Take a look above.

THE WORD | DeSean Jackson Honoring Nipsey Hussle For A Year

Its been a little over a month since the great Nipsey Hussle passed away, but the love for him continues to be out poured. Just the other day The Game wrote a poem to the girlfriend of Nipsey, Lauren London. And even more recently a billboard was put up in his honor.

DeSean Jackson of the Philadelphia Eagles has also decided to honor the fallen rapper. Football season hasn’t started yet but Jackson already has decided to make his cleats a memorial to Nipsey. According to TMZ “The Philadelphia WR is set to wear custom cleats with Nipsey's face and lyrics on them all season long.

Round of applauses to all the celebs and fans that kept the memory of the prolific rapper Nipsey Hussle alive. Let’s let the marathon continue.

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THE WORD | Point Guard D’Angelo Russell Caught With Marijuana While Passing Through TSA.

Brooklyn Nets All-Star point guard D'Angelo Russell was cited at a New York airport Wednesday night for marijuana possession.

Russell, who was flying from LaGuardia Airport to Louisville International Airport, was questioned by police after searched by TSA. The workers indicated that what at first glance seemed to appear as a can of Arizona iced tea, in the checked bag turned out to be a hidden compartment where they found marijuana. Russell received a summons to appear in court for marijuana possession of less than 50 grams. The citation Russell received is a violation under New York law and is punishable by a fine of $100 or less.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BvqEAAgAJR8/?igshid=1wywlla918ae7 

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THE WORD | New York Giants Draft Pick Corey Ballentine injured as friend shot dead


Reported by People, Corey Ballentine, a sixth-round draft pick to the New York Giants was reportedly injured in a shooting in Topeka, Kansas yesterday morning (April 28). His college teammate at Washburn University, Dwane Simmons, was unfortunately killed.

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The shooting occurred hours after the Washburn University senior was selected in the NFL Draft on Saturday (April 27). The Topeka Police Department said their officers responded to a "disturbance with gunshots" at an off-campus location around midnight on Sunday. Upon arrival, they discovered Simmons dead. Ballentine was taken to a local hospital where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries.

"we are aware of the tragic situation and continue to gather information. We have spoken to Corey, and he is recovering in the hospital. Our thoughts are with Dwane Simmons’ family, friends and teammates and the rest of the Washburn community." The Giants responded statement

Ballentine was the seventh pick of the sixth round, and the 180th overall. He was also the first player out of Washburn to be drafted since Cary Williams went to the Tennessee Titans in 2008.



THE WORD | Nike's Loyalty Pays Off After Tiger Woods 15th Major Win

Nike's years of loyalty to Tiger Woods paid off on yesterday.

Tiger Woods, once a giant of both golf and sponsorships, has been losing in both those fields in recent years. But Nike, which has a history of remaining loyal to the athletes with its endorsement deals, stuck with Woods. A sex scandal and a DUI arrest in 2017 helped drive many other sponsors away.

Nike(NKE) got about $22 million worth of exposure from Woods' win Sunday, according to analysis by Apex Marketing, a sponsorship analytics research firm. And that included only the original broadcast itself, not the encore airing of the match or the many news clips of him winning.

Woods overcame his many doubters by winning the Masters, his first major tournament win in 11 years. And within minutes Nike had an ad up on social media highlighting the win, and its "Just Do It" slogan. It was seen by tens of millions of people.

"It's crazy to think a 43-year old who has experienced every high and every low and has just won his 15th major is chasing the same dream as a three-year old," said the ad. It then played a clip of a three-year old Woods saying "I'm going to beat Jack Nicklaus.”

Nicklaus' has the record of 18 majors.

THE WORD |Dwyane Wade Final Career Game

Dwyane Wade went out in legendary fashion. The Heat star recorded a triple-double during his final career game against the Nets on Wednesday night. Wade finished with 25 points (10/28 FG, 3/13 3PT), 10 assists and 11 rebounds.

"This is an Oscar-worthy script for my last game in my last season," Wade said during a postgame interview.

Wade, who made his second start of the season, played a season-high 36 minutes. He did so in front of his friends and fellow NBA stars LeBron James, Chris Paul and Carmelo Anthony.

"Listen, we couldn't miss D-Wade's last game. This is the last time he's going to be on an NBA floor wearing that Miami Heat uniform, that No. 3. So we're happy to be here supporting him." - LeBron James, LA LAKERS

James added: "He's given so much to this game. [He's] one of the best players we've ever seen in this game from as soon as he came out of Marquette. It's an honor for me to be alongside him for four years and to also be his brother for the last 16 years of my career."

THE WORD | Magic Johnson Steps Down as Lakers President of Basketball Operations

Magic Johnson is stepping down from his position as president of basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers. Magic Johnson announced that he was leaving the Lakers ahead of the team's final game of the season. He shared this announcement with the press before contacting team owner Jeanie Buss.

Shortly after news of Johnson stepping down broke, Jeanie Buss took to Twitter with a message.

"Earvin, I loved working side by side with you," Buss wrote. "You’ve brought us a long way. We will continue the journey. We love you."

Magic was hired by owner Jeanie Buss in February 2017 as part of a front-office restructuring in which her brother, head of basketball operations Jim Buss, and general manager Mitch Kupchak were deposed. Joining Johnson was General Manager Rob Pelinka, a former agent best known for representing Lakers legend Kobe Bryant.

While Magic took the unusual step of announcing his decision to the media before delivering it to Buss face-to-face, he referred to the Lakers owner as his “sister” and said he would continue to advise her and offer free agency pitches on behalf of the Lakers if she asked.

“There is no greater Los Angeles Laker than Earvin Johnson,” the franchise said in a statement. "We are deeply grateful to Magic for all that he has done for our franchise — as a player, an ambassador and an executive. He will always be not only a Lakers icon, but our family. As we begin the process of moving forward, we will work in a measured and methodical fashion to make the right moves for the future of our organization.”

Magic said his inability to speak freely about rival players was a contributing factor, calling himself a “free bird” who didn’t like being “handcuffed.” He drew the wrath of the league office, which fined him $500,000 for tampering with Paul George in 2017 and $50,000 for tampering with Giannis Antetokounmpo in 2018. The league also investigated contact with Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons but ultimately ruled that Johnson had not violated its tampering rules.

“I love the NBA so much," he said. "I’m looking forward to going back to being an ambassador. Now I don’t have to worry about [talking about players].”

Since making his NBA debut in 1979, Johnson has been affiliated with the Lakers as a player, coach and minority owner, in addition to his run as president.

Coach Luke Walton?

While Magic denied this had anything to do with Lakers’ coach Luke Walton — who Magic had been given the green light to fire and was expected to do so in the next 24 hours.

Coach Luke Walton has been on the hot seat for months and was widely expected to be let go following the Lakers’ season finale. Reports indicated that Johnson had confronted Walton early in the season, but that their communication had cooled in recent weeks. Johnson expressed discomfort at the idea of firing Walton.