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Oakland Athletics catcher Bruce Maxwell provided further insight on his beliefs that led to his decision to kneel during the national anthem Saturday, citing President Donald Trump’s lack of compassion towards people of color.

“I was talking to my dad about this. Our fearless leader right now is expressing that it’s OK to judge people by the color of their skin. It’s OK to separate people by their differences. That’s not OK,” Maxwell told Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports.

“There’s not been one time Trump has tried to sit in our seat. He grew up in a bubble, a golden bubble. He’s never tried to reach out and understand where African-Americans and Hispanics and Muslims are coming from. All he knows is what he’s experienced, and that’s life on a silver platter. That’s a big thing for me.”

Maxwell, who comes from a military family, will continue to kneel during anthems, saying if “things don’t really change” his protest will continue into next season, as well.

“It might take a little while. Racism has been going on since this country was founded,” Maxwell added.

“But stepping up and recognizing the fact that people in this country are being treated unjustly is a big problem when it comes to mankind, and I’m pretty sure people who died for this country fought so I could do this.”

The Athletics will conclude a three-game series on Sunday against the Texas Rangers.

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Charles Barkley will forever be old school when it comes to the game of basketball.

He’s demonstrated this viewpoint in the past by claiming jump-shooting teams are incapable of becoming champions – something the Golden State Warriors have disproved on multiple occasions, mind you.

The latest target of his disdain is the league itself and its decision to extend the regular season to cut down on the amount of back-to-back games for its players.

“I want to commend the NBA. You know, these poor babies can’t play back-to-back games,” said Barkley, sarcastically, at an SMU athletic forum on Wednesday.

“Making $30-, $40-million a year. But we want to make it convenient for them. At $40 million a year, we can’t stress ’em out. The private jets and the four-star hotels is not enough, so I just want to commend the NBA for just making it so convenient for these poor babies,” Barkley said.

To reduce the stress level on players from travel, the NBA will begin the 2017-18 regular season on Oct. 17, therefore eliminating stretches of four games in five nights completely, as well as reducing the amount of back-to-back slates per team from 16.3 to 14.4.

Such changes will also aid in preventing teams from resting talent when they’re healthy, either on the road where opposing fans can only see them a handful of times (if that), or for nationally-televised contests. New guidelines on the matter have been submitted to the Board of Governors from the NBA’s Competition Committee, with a vote for approval coming on Sept. 28.

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WWE producer and creative team member Michael Hayes extended an invitation towards Cody Rhodes on Twitter to appear at 25 November’s revived Starrcade show.

It was announced yesterday that WWE are bringing back the famous NWA/WCW event in a house show format, and Hayes wants Cody to make a brief WWE return so he can appear on the card. This stemmed from Cody tweeting Hayes to suggest he ensures Goldust is on the show, because it’d mean a lot to the Rhodes family.

Starrcade was the creation of Dusty Rhodes way back in 1983, so it would make sense to have some Rhodes family influence involved. Hayes replied with his own suggestion that Cody make a WWE comeback and team with his brother at Starrcade.

If this happens, it’d mark Cody’s first WWE showing since departing the company in May, 2016. Further, it’s likely he wouldn’t be held down by the dreadful Stardust gimmick that derailed his career and would simply appear as himself.

Cody got the ball rolling by tweeting Hayes, and it now looks possible that we could see a Rhodes family reunion in WWE to honour Dusty.

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Fourteen of the NBA’s 30 franchises lost money last season before receiving revenue-sharing cash from the league, and nine of those teams still ended up in the red after that, according to confidential financial records obtained by ESPN’s Brian Windhorst and Zach Lowe.

The report appears to confirm suspicions that despite record income from national television contracts, some teams are having trouble turning a profit – and not just in small markets.

The nine franchises to reportedly come out in the red, by the league’s accounting, after revenue sharing are: the Atlanta Hawks, Brooklyn Nets, Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit Pistons, Memphis Grizzlies, Milwaukee Bucks, Orlando Magic, San Antonio Spurs, and Washington Wizards.

The Spurs and Cavaliers may raise eyebrows given their combined runs of success, but it was already widely reported the Cavs lost $40 million during their 2015-16 championship season – due in part to a $54-million luxury tax bill.

At the end of the day, small cities such as Memphis and Milwaukee cannot compare to markets like Los Angeles. However, Brooklyn is part of New York City, and Washington and Atlanta rank as the nation’s seventh- and 10th-largest media markets, respectively.

At least one owner brought up the idea of expansion as a way to increase team income, the report states. An expansion fee – likely over $1 billion per team – would be divvied equally among NBA owners and not subject to the 50-50 basketball-related income split with players under the collective bargaining agreement.

Commissioner Adam Silver is on record as saying expansion is not a priority, although markets such as Seattle may be soon waiting in the wings for a new team. Relocating less profitable franchises is another option, something a handful of richer owners have suggested, according to Windhorst and Lowe.

The chasm between the NBA’s most profitable and weaker franchises will be discussed at the league’s next Board of Governors meeting at the end of September, sources told ESPN.

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Source: The Peter Borough Examiner

Bobby Roode spoke with The Peter Borough Examiner on a number of wrestling topics. Here are some of the highlights:

Losing his drive in TNA/Impact:

“To be honest, when I was with TNA, I just didn’t have the drive any more, I didn’t have the passion. It was unfamiliar territory to me, because I’ve always loved the business and I’ve always been passionate about it. It was the first thing that I thought of when I woke up, last thing I thought about when I went to bed. I just didn’t have that any more.”

Seeing friends (like Samoa Joe) flourishing in NXT and the draw to go there:

“It was very intriguing to me. Honestly, I didn’t want to do anything else with my life. I knew that I still had a lot of really good years left in this business. I really wanted to get the opportunity to come to WWE. NXT was presented to me and I was very excited about the opportunity that was given.”

His entrance at NXT TakeOver: Toronto with a choir backing him up:

“It was fun. That was one of my favorite ones actually, the one with the choir. I think it was 80, 84 people in the choir and just coming up from underneath the stage. Being in my hometown, of course, at the Air Canada Centre, that was probably my most memorable entrance by far.”

You can read the full interview by clicking here.

UNIONDALE, N.Y. – Part of the deal between Nassau County and Barclays Center, where the Islanders play now, but which operates the renovated Nassau Coliseum, is that the Islanders either play four regular-season games and two preseason games at their traditional home, or the county gets an extra $1 million in rent.

Because Sunday’s preseason contest between the Islanders and Philadelphia Flyers is the only scheduled NHL action at the Coliseum in 2017-18, Nassau County is getting its extra million bucks.

Sunday’s game also was little more than a tease. Gary Bettman said earlier this month at the Winter Classic press conference that “my gut reaction is it’s not a viable option” for the Islanders to return to an arena that got a $165 million renovation but still has many of the same issues as it did before the Islanders moved to Brooklyn, simultaneously 22 miles and light years away.

John Tavares nearly blew the top off the old barn when he scored his second goal of the game, an overtime winner to give the Islanders a 3-2 verdict. The level of sound in the old barn is the same as ever when the building is full, and the sellout crowd serenaded the Islanders all the way off the ice.

“It was pretty close to what we had in the playoffs,” Tavares said. “It was through the roof coming out in warmups and certainly the start of the game. Hearing the ‘Let’s go Islanders’ chants and the ‘Yes! Yes!’ chants (for goals) were prominent again. This fan base has got a tremendous identity, and they don’t want to lose hold of that. As players, we recognize that, and we want to reward them with good hockey, so this was fun.”

During the break between the third period and overtime, the fans made their opinion known, loudly chanting, “BRING THEM BACK.” The chant rose up again after Tavares’ game-winning goal.

“They certainly wanted to be heard,” Tavares said. “That’s above my pay grade, but I think certainly this place is very meaningful to this organization and the identity of this organization for a reason.”

 

The identity lives on in the Islanders’ logo, which has not changed since the move to Brooklyn. The tip of the “I” in the word “Islanders” points directly to the location of Nassau Coliseum. Keeping the team’s identity exactly the same is one of the reasons the move has felt half-baked for a lot of people, and why a return to Nassau County, even for an afternoon, was priceless.

“It means a lot,” said Matt Mead of Rockville Center, wearing a vintage Dave Scatchard jersey. “It’s kind of sad, because you know we’re going to have to head to Brooklyn after this, so it’s nice to have one little last hurrah here. It’s a good turnout, and I got to see a lot of old friends that I haven’t seen in a while.

“I’m enjoying it. It’s a 30-minute train ride to get to Brooklyn – it’s not that bad, but I miss coming here, tailgating, being with friends and family. Brooklyn’s a little bit of a pain.”

That pain is measurable in the fact that the Islanders ranked 28th in the NHL in attendance last year, at 13,101 per game, 82.9% of capacity in Brooklyn. That was down from an average of 13,626 (86.2%) in the first season in Brooklyn, while the Islanders averaged 15,334 per game, 94.8% of the final-season capacity at the Coliseum.

Sunday’s crowd of 13,917 not only filled the Coliseum, but the parking lot as well. Arriving in the morning, fans set up their tailgates and Islanders flags flew all over.

“I think we had a good sense that was going to happen,” said Tavares, who owns 89 regular-season goals at the Coliseum, plus five in the playoffs. “That was such a great part of Islanders hockey and who the Islanders are, is a lot of weekend afternoon games or evening Saturday home games, people out in the parking lot with a lot of space, just enjoying the atmosphere of what it was to be an Islander fan. It was great that they got to enjoy that again.”

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Seattle would like to house a NHL club.

Oak View Group reached an agreement with Seattle mayor Ed Murray on Tuesday to privately fund the construction of a $600-million arena at the Seattle Center.

The building would be a prime location for a NHL franchise, and the league’s deputy commissioner said that appears to be part of the group’s plan.

“The group has confirmed having a strong interest in owning and operating an NHL franchise,” Bill Daly said, according to The Athletic’s Pierre LeBrun. “We will be continuing to monitor the situation.”

Oak View Group leader Tim Leiweke says billionaire David Bonderman – a potential NHL owner – has put money into the building, according to KING 5’s Chris Daniels.

Leiweke is a former president and CEO of both Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment, whose holdings include three major sports franchises, and Anschutz Entertainment Group, which owns the Los Angeles Kings as well as several other sports teams and arenas.

In November, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman told a conference in Toronto that the NHL would not focus on Seattle until the city “actually build(s) a building.”

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Despite submitting arguably the best performance of Week 1, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith believes this season will be his last with his current franchise.

Smith revealed on “In Depth with Graham Bensinger” that he’s getting the feeling the Chiefs are aiming to move on from him at the end of this year.

“For sure,” Smith said when asked if 2017 feels like his last year with the Chiefs. “It absolutely does. Without a doubt.”

Smith was dismayed by the Chiefs’ decision to trade up 17 spots with the Buffalo Bills during the this year’s draft to choose quarterback Patrick Mahomes II with the No. 10 pick.

Following the selection, many believed Smith would operate as a placeholder until Mahomes is ready to take the reins.

“It’s a tough pill to swallow,” Smith said. “It’s like, man, (we) could’ve added this or this or this position or this player.”

The quarterback also blasted the San Francisco 49ers, where he spent the first seven years of his career after being selected first overall in the 2005 draft.

Forget the coaching changes, I’m talking just the culture of the building was not (good). Unhealthy. Completely dysfunctional. Different people on different wavelengths, not a clear communication, not a clear goal of the entire building. Very separated. And I think that trickled into the locker room. We had a very separated locker room, offense, defense, special teams. It was not a selfless unit. Not everybody put the team first. I think all of those things that come with dysfunction that are the opposite of what healthy organizations and team enviornments have.

In any event, the 33-year-old certainly made a strong impression during Thursday’s season opener, dissecting the New England Patriots by going 28-of-35 for 368 yards, four touchdowns, and no interceptions in a 42-27 win.

The Chiefs will certainly have to make one of their most difficult decisions in recent memory at the end of the season.

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As noted, RAW Women’s Champion was a guest on the latest episode of PodcastOne’s Chasing Glory with Lilian Garcia. In the interview, Bliss discussed her engagement with Buddy Murphy, her struggle with anorexia throughout the years and overcoming the disease, how she utilizes her WWE platform and more.

You can download the full episode from PodcastOne at this link, below are some more highlights that they sent us:

Her battle with anorexia:

“It started off as simple dieting and I was trying just to watch what I was eating and then I started weighing myself and then it becomes a numbers game. Once you start weighing yourself everyday, you start seeing little pounds drop here and there and then you say, ‘Okay, what’s the next number I can get to? What’s the next number I can get to?’ And then that’s when I started researching and learning about calories and I became obsessed. I can’t even tell you, it’s crazy to talk about. I became obsessed with counting calories, obsessed with making sure that I knew exactly what was going into my body at all times. I used to make these little note cards and my mom found these note cards and that’s when she knew I had a problem.

“They were just little tiny cards and they had food places that I had normally ate and it would have an item from that place-let’s say it was like chicken from Burger King, it would have the amount of calories, the amount of fat, the amount of sodium and I made my own little nutritional cards. And then I would write down how much of that I would have to make a certain amount of calories that would fit my diet that day. And you know cheering, we would have practice after school and it got to the point where I would try all these little tricks just to not eat and I remember I was starving, I was so hungry and it was cheer practice and I remember chewing up a protein bar and spitting it back out just to get the flavor of food in my mouth and some kind of energy absorbed from that and I would spit it out and go train because I was so calorie conscious. I would get up a four in the morning before school, I would go and do cardio and then at school I made sure that I would only eat a Jell-O, an apple, and an egg white and that equaled to 150 calories a day and the weight just started dropping off of me like crazy. I went from 130 to 90 in six weeks.

“My mom was anorexic when she was younger so she knew, she knew exactly when she saw that I was like smelling food, but not eating it or if I was cutting my food up into really tiny pieces. I would have a piece of bread in the morning and I would just tear it up into tiny pieces and it would take me 30 minutes to eat that one piece of bread. I got real skinny, I was weak, I remember I turned into this completely different person because when you’re wrapped up in an eating disorder, you’re not yourself.”

Being a voice for the fight against anorexia:

I” want to be that person that shows you cannot be defined by something. When you looked at me you saw anorexia. I was bones, I was dark circles, I was sunken in and…I didn’t want to be defined as that. I was always getting looked at and just judged and I didn’t want to be that person and I wanted to show you can be more than an eating disorder, because it wraps up people so much and it’s not what it’s about.

“I had the amazing experience of when we were in Italy, we went to do a hospital visit and they actually sent me to an eating disorder unit. They didn’t know my past, they didn’t know anything. It was amazing and I saw these kids there and they were teenagers and there was one boy in the back pacing back and forth, I used to do that. There was one girl constantly shaking her knee, I used to do that. There was one kid with a feeding tube, I know that. They wouldn’t look me in the eye, they were very to themselves cause they were like, ‘You don’t know what we’re going through.’

“I had the translator tell them that I had an eating disorder and I was anorexic and I had turned my life around and I had you know, gone onto better things and realize there is more than the number on a scale. All of these kids stopped and looked at me and they gave eye contact to me and the kid in the back who was pacing back and forth, he stopped and he just like kind of looked up at me. And so I kept talking and talking and you would just see them like, they would, start with their head completely down and they looked up and by the end of the conversation they were asking questions. They were talking, they were being responsive, and that’s something that I would never trade for a million years because if I were to be able to help one person, because it’s a day by day thing-eating disorders are a day by day thing. You can’t run, you can’t. And so if I could help somebody for one day, that’s more than worth it for me because that can be the day that saves their life.”

Dealing with fan criticism:

“I’ve fully accepted the fact that if I’m going to do a career like this, I have to be willing to take criticism, because it’s a part of the job, you know? Any Instagram thing I post, someone’s going to say something, I know that. Anything on Twitter, someone’s going to judge whatever I do, whatever I say, whatever I look like, I understand that. But I also know that if I were to ever read into that and slip back into an eating disorder, my body will not survive another one. I’ve been told that multiple times with how my body reacts to it, I will not survive another one.

“If I’m a little more heavier, if I’m ever a little thicker, that’s fine because that means I’m stronger. It means I’m not worried about not waking up in the morning, I’m not worried about the amount of calories I’m eating. There’s so many more things to life to worry about than that. Like they say, ‘An eating disorder will always be in the back of your head, you’ll never get rid of it.’ Once its there, its always there.”

“Yeah, there’s still foods I’m still afraid to. I’m terrified to eat certain foods, but I know that if I eat them, it’s going to be okay. I’m going to get through it. I’ve been very aware with the fact that being in the public eye, being on TV, being cast on Total Divas, I’m setting myself out there for criticism, but I have to know in my heart, what I know is right.”

Her future goals in WWE:

“I want to be one of the longest reigning champions and for our women as a whole, even if I’m not in the match, I want us to have a Main Event at WrestleMania. That’s what I want so bad more than anything even if I’m not in the match-I mean I would love to be in the match let’s not get that twisted, but if we could have a Main Event on WrestleMania, that would be the ultimate thing.”

Portland Trail Blazers v Los Angeles Lakers

For the first time in NBA history, a franchise will be raising two different numbers to the rafters for one player, with Kobe Bryant having his Nos. 8 and 24 immortalized by the Los Angeles Lakers.

“As a kid growing up in Italy, I always dreamed of my jersey hanging in the Lakers rafters, but I certainly never imagined two of them,” said Bryant in an official statement. “The Lakers have bestowed a huge honor on me and I’m grateful for the fans’ enthusiasm around this game.”

The Black Mamba becomes the 10th Lakers player to have his number(s) retired, joining Wilt Chamberlain (13), Elgin Baylor (22), Gail Goodrich (25), Magic Johnson (32), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (33), Shaquille O’Neal (34), James Worthy (42), Jerry West (44), and Jamaal Wilkes (52).

“This honor is very well deserved,” Lakers president of basketball operations Johnson said. “Kobe was one of the greatest Lakers and NBA players of all time and he’s definitely on my Mount Rushmore. I look forward to seeing both of his jerseys be retired and celebrating this special day with Kobe and his family.”

Bryant donned No. 8 until 2006 when he made the switch to No. 24, which was his original number competing at Lower Merion High School. He then wore No. 33 prior to entering the league, but since No. 33 had already been retired, and No. 24 was taken by a teammate, Bryant decided to wear No. 8.

During his legendary 20-year stint in purple and gold, Bryant won five championships with a pair of Finals MVPs, was an 18-time All-Star, and earned a spot on 11 All-NBA First Teams. He’s also the Lakers’ all-time leading scorer with 33,643 points, which is the third-highest point total of any player ever.

Bryant’s numbers will be officially retired in a ceremony at halftime on Dec. 18 when the Lakers host the visiting Golden State Warriors.

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IWGP heavyweight champion Kazuchika Okada is the latest guest on the Pro Wrestling Illustrated Podcast. On the podcast, the “Rainmaker” discussed topping the 2017 PWI 500, which was the first time a Japanese wrestler grabbed the number one spot in the list.

They sent us these highlights from the interview:

Topping the PWI 500:

“I’m sure there’s going to be a lot of fans in America and overseas who are going to pick [the magazine] up and not know who this guy is. They’ll be surprised and wondering who I am. So I really do hope that they dig a little bit and check out New Japan and check out the roster. And if that happens, that would be something that I consider an honor. Then, maybe . . . you guys might have a few more New Japan guys showing up in that list, toward the top 5 maybe.”

The importance of showmanship in his wrestling presentation:

“From what I can see, gone are the days where you can just be the strongest and that will put you at the top. It takes a little bit more . . . something else to grab the attention of not just pro wrestling fans, but fans in general—to catch their eye. That’s why I enter the ring in the fashion that I do and wear a robe that shines the way it does. I can’t see somebody in black trunks walking in and taking the spot that I hold now. That time is gone.”

The prospect of one day going to WWE:

“There’s really no telling what could happen. But just as much as I might feel the desire and the drive to be in a match against Jinder or something at that level at SummerSlam, just like Nakamura did, I might also want to jump into UFC. I might also want to go to Hollywood and try my luck there—maybe as the next James Bond. Also, I might desire to focus on the next challenge against Kenny or whoever here. So, to be honest with you, I simply don’t know.”

Okada discussed several other topics during the candid interview, including his classic trilogy of matches with Kenny Omega and what might come next, his visit to the WWE locker room during a Smackdown house show in Los Angeles, his memories of working in TNA, and much more. Also on the podcast, Castle and PWI Senior Writer Dan Murphy discuss the rest of the PWI 500, including their thoughts on who made the top 10 and who did not. The PWI Podcast is available to stream at pwi-online.com or through iTunes. The December 2017 issue of Pro Wrestling Illustrated, featuring the 27th annual PWI 500, is available for order or digital download now at pwi-online.com and will hit newsstands on September 26.

 Vince Carter #15
 

With Hollywood power players descending on Toronto for the city’s annual film festival, one documentary of local interest has been “The Carter Effect”, chronicling Vince Carter‘s impact more than a decade ago on the Raptors franchise and basketball in Canada.

Raptors president Masai Ujiri attended the premiere Saturday, and during a Q&A alongside the film’s producers, offered a somewhat unclear statement. “Vince Carter will be home in Toronto,” Ujiri said, according to Sportsnet’s Michael Grange.

Carter signed with the Sacramento Kings as a free agent in July. There’s been speculation for a few years now that the Raptors could have an interest in bringing the onetime face of the franchise back, but it hasn’t happened – even though Carter could have filled a Toronto roster need this summer.

Turning 41 in January, time is running out on the playing career of the man once known as “Air Canada”, who since carved out a niche as an effective role player after his superstar days ended.

It’s quite possible, however, that Ujiri was also hinting at the chances of the Raptors organization one day retiring Carter’s number. While some Toronto fans still hold the circumstances around his controversial 2004 trade against him, there’s little doubt about Carter’s impact on the NBA in Canada.

Though his peak playing performance with the Raptors only lasted from 1999 to 2001, the Floridian was also responsible for capturing the hearts and minds of a generation of young Canadian basketball enthusiasts. Toronto NBA products such as Tristan Thompson, Cory Joseph, and Andrew Wiggins have all pointed to Carter’s presence during their childhoods as some level of inspiration.

The Raptors have retired no player numbers in their 22-year history. Carter wore No. 15 with the team from 1998-2004.

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With the United States and North Korea locked in a nuclear standoff, Dennis Rodman hopes to serve as the voice of reason between the two sides.

Having visited Kim Jong-un on multiple occasions, the five-time NBA champion believes he can play a role in calming tensions between Donald Trump and the North Korea leader.

“For me to go over there and see (Kim) as much as I have, I basically hang out with him all the time,” Rodman said on “Good Morning Britain,” as transcribed by Reuters. “We laugh, we sing karaoke, we do a lot of cool things together. We ride horses, we hang out, we go skiing, we hardly ever talk politics and that’s the good thing.

“I don’t love (Kim),” he added. “I just want to try to straighten things out for everyone to get along together.”

North Korea has carried out a number of nuclear tests, leading Trump to warn of “fire and fury” in response.

WrestleMania Premiere Party A Celebration Of Miami Art And Fashion

WWE Hall Of Famer and Houston native Booker T is hosting a special live version of his “Heated Conversations” podcast later this month as part of a benefit for those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

Taking place Sept. 24 in Los Angeles, the benefit will feature appearances by WWE Superstars, raffles, and wrestling memorabilia to be auctioned off, including autographed items from Kurt Angle and Samoa Joe.

Booker T, who’s real name is Robert Booker Tio Huffman, announced in December that he plans to run for mayor of Houston in 2019.

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The NBA is trying to solve the problem of tanking by taking away the main incentive behind the controversial team-building strategy.

The league is aggressively pursuing lottery reform and could vote changes into legislation before the start of the 2017-18 season, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

The Competition Committee is expected to vote on points of reform, before sending a formal recommendation to the Board of Governors for the final decision.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver is strongly advocating for draft lottery reform measures to disincentivize tanking by lowering the worst teams’ chances of having the highest odds at the best picks. Proposed changes would also see higher odds for lottery teams making a jump up or down in the draft order.

Smaller markets have opposed lottery reform in the past since a restrictive draft system is their only avenue to recruit elite talent. Free agency typically siphons stars from smaller to bigger destinations, which puts an added premium on drafting.

The current system gives the team with the worst record a 25 percent chance at winning the first overall pick and a 100 percent chance at picking in the top four. Odds for higher picks decrease as records improve, as in there’s an incentive to lose, which is why some teams try as hard as possible to field a noncompetitive team in hopes of maximizing their lottery chances.

Some organizations like the Philadelphia 76ers, Sacramento Kings, Orlando Magic, Phoenix Suns, and New York Knicks have been given high lottery picks many years in a row while making little tangible progress to improve their records.

It’s unclear as to when the changes would be put into place. Given that the league’s 30 teams are all operating on their own timelines, it could potentially be difficult to find an amicable time to implement changes at an agreed time.

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It turns out Paige VanZant suffered far more than a couple of defeats while competing as a strawweight.

The 23-year-old joined “The MMA Hour” on Tuesday ahead of her flyweight debut opposite Jessica Eye at UFC 216, and revealed her last few cuts down to 115 pounds had been far from kind to her, with her most recent struggles nearly scrapping last December’s bout with Michelle Waterson.

“It’s a big cut for me,” VanZant said, per MMA Fighting’s Marc Raimondi. “I’m a lot heavier than people realize. I was honestly killing myself for this sport. In my last I want to say two fights or three fights, I’ve passed out in my bathroom. This last one, I passed out and had the doctors almost not clear me for the fight.”

VanZant is just one of several UFC fighters to have already made the move to the promotion’s newly launched weight class – her next opponent included – and with its inaugural champ less than three months away from being crowned, the Oregon native thought there was no time like the present to spare her body the grueling weight cuts and move up to 125 pounds.

“The 125 division is finally getting built, so it just made sense for me to try it out. I’m moving up. I’m a big advocate for body positivity and I was putting myself through an eating disorder to make weight. And it became not fun for me anymore. I hate cutting. I hated the process. Obviously, passing out on your bathroom floor is not fun, because you’re dying in a bathtub.”

The UFC vet’s pair of submission losses and opportunities outside the cage have prompted many to question her dedication to her fighting career, but she maintained that not only was an early exit the furthest thing from her mind during her strawweight stint, but that we have yet to see the best of her in the Octagon.

“I’m not going anywhere. People are crazy if they think that I’m quitting this game. I’m not going anywhere. I plan on fighting for a long time. I’m a fighter first. Of course I’m gonna pursue other opportunities that are coming my way, because they’re amazing and I would never pass up something that I’m still passionate about it. But I’m a fighter, first and foremost.”

She meets Eye on Oct. 7 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

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Source: The Other Guys Podcast

Chris Jericho’s partnership with Kevin Owens was one of the most entertaining acts in the WWE last year and it all dissolved when Owens attacked Jericho during “The Festival of Friendship.” Jericho spoke to Baby Huey and Bimbo Jimbo on The Other Guys Podcast about how the whole thing came together.

“I had that idea months earlier, to do a big spectacle with dancing girls and the whole thing, and then it was constantly being changed,” Jericho said. “Even the day of the show it was changed and I didn’t like it and I knew my way was better. I stood up for it, even to the point of calling Vince when he was on a plane in the middle of the air and pitching my case, not taking no for an answer, not allowing my vision to be changed.”

Jericho said he really loved the story he and Owens were able to tell during the segment. It started with an incredibly happy sequence of Jericho presenting gifts to Owens, and then ended with the slow reveal of Owens’ impending attack.

“The ‘Red Wedding’ from Game Of Thrones was something that was really resonating, where you have this brilliant, beautiful and fun moment and then it just goes south in such a quick fashion where you can’t believe it,” Jericho said. “That, to me, was the brilliance of it.”

Jericho enjoyed the segment so much that he thinks it ranks as his favorite moment in his entire WWE career.

“It was definitely one of my favorite things that I’ve done, maybe even the crowning jewel of what I’ve done in all these years being in the WWE,” he said.

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The Pittsburgh Penguins are far from done.

While team president David Morehouse was enjoying his day with the Stanley Cup – his third since assuming the position in 2007 – he affirmed his belief that the recent run of success is entirely sustainable.

“I actually think we can win a couple more Cups,” Morehouse told Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “We have the best owner in hockey, the best general manager, the best coach, and a bunch of the best players.”

Morehouse is referring to team owner Mario Lemieux, GM Jim Rutherford, and likely a group of players that include Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Phil Kessel, Kris Letang, and Matt Murray.

The Penguins, of course, have won the past two Stanley Cups, and will be aiming for a rare three-peat, something that hasn’t been achieved since the New York Islanders dynasty in the early 1980s.

“The goal would be to try and replicate what we’ve been able to do,” Morehouse added. “It’s the hardest trophy to win, but I’d like to give it a shot and try to win a few more.”

 NBA: San Antonio Spurs at Boston Celtics
 

When a beloved, high-profile NBA talent elects to take his talents elsewhere in free agency, they’re mostly met with a barrage of negativity from their former fan base and media for a business decision they had every right to make.

But when management moves a player who had every intention to stay around for the long haul, there’s not nearly as much outrage, if any.

All-Star guard Isaiah Thomas feels as such about his move to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Thomas said he hopes his trade from the Boston Celtics will open up eyes about the double standard, while using Kevin Durant signing with the Golden State Warriors as a prime example to support the other side.

“I actually think this was a good lesson,” Thomas wrote in The Players’ Tribune. “Not only for me, but for the league as a whole. And for the fans and the media, too, you know, just in terms of how they talk about guys changing teams.

“I was thinking about that last year with KD and his free agency – about how people gave him such a hard time for doing what he felt was best for him and his future. How they turned him into a villain, just for doing what was his right to do as a free agent in this league. Suddenly, it was, ‘Oh, he’s selfish,’ or, ‘Oh, he’s a coward.’ Suddenly, just for doing business on his end, and doing right by himself, he was portrayed as this bad guy.”

Thomas added that the pain of being shipped off by the Celtics still lingers to this day, and that loyalty is really “just a word” if players who displayed his level of commitment can be sent packing.

“I want them to see how my getting traded – just like that, without any warning – by the franchise that I scratched and clawed for, and bled for, and put my everything on the line for? That’s why people need to fix their perspective,” Thomas wrote.

“It’s like, man – with a few exceptions, unless we’re free agents, 99 times out of 100, it’s the owners with the power. So when players are getting moved left and right, and having their lives changed without any say-so, and it’s no big deal … but then the handful of times it flips, and the player has control … then it’s some scandal? Just being honest, but – to me, that says a lot about where we are as a league, and even as a society. And it says a lot about how far we still have to go.”

Nonetheless, Thomas says there’s “no hard feelings” with Boston, although he’s still hopeful the basketball world will look at what happened to him and perhaps think twice the next time it wants to pile on a departing free agent.

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Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll backed his star defender Michael Bennett on Wednesday, after he alleged police in Las Vegas racially profiled and threatened to kill him in an incident Aug. 27.

“Michael Bennett unfortunately experienced a horrendous incident on August 27,” Carroll said in a statement posted online. “We are thankful he is safe, and we take this opportunity to say that we stand in support of him and anyone facing inequalities.

“What happened to Michael is a classic illustration of the reality of inequality demonstrated daily.”

Bennett revealed Wednesday morning he was viciously pinned to the ground and handcuffed by police after a series of gun shots went off near the area he was located. Bennett was in Las Vegas to take in the boxing match between Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor.

A video of the encounter obtained by TMZ showed Bennett pleading with one officer while another officer stood on a balcony above holding what appeared to be a handgun.

“I wasn’t doing nothing, man!” Bennett is heard shouting in the video “… I was here with my friends! They told us to get out, everybody ran!”

Carroll said he hopes the incident inspires everyone to stand for change when inequalities are brought to light.

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Source: USA Today

Recent WWE signing Kacy Catanzaro most likely won’t face any speed bumps as she learns the physical side of wrestling. A former competitor on American Ninja Warrior, she has a fearlessness that should suit her well in the ring. But the real question is what will Catanzaro’s character be when she’s ready to make her debut.

Triple H, who’s had a hand in developing countless young superstars, told USA Today he thinks Catanzaro might find success as a cocky heel.

“I like to think of myself as a nice guy, (but) I made 90 percent of my career being the worst guy in the business,” he said. “She might end up being the bad guy that thinks she’s better than everybody else, because she was the hero on American Ninja Warrior.”

He continued: “She has a little twinkle in her eye. She might be the kind of person that embraces the evil side.”

As noted, Catanzaro has a different opinion and said she hopes for her character to spread positivity, the same way she does in real life.

“I’m not gonna be a bad guy,” she said. “I’m definitely gonna be a babyface (and) keep the same (positive) brand that I am in Ninja, which is honestly who I am in general.”

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CLEVELAND – The Cleveland Cavaliers are reviving a $140 million renovation of Quicken Loans Arena just over a week after the project was scrapped.

The team’s announcement released Wednesday says it’ll also extend its lease at the facility for seven extra years, until 2034.

The Cavaliers had hoped to upgrade the 22-year-old downtown arena with more dining spaces and a glass exterior but faced opposition from community groups objecting to the use of taxpayer money. The Cavaliers canceled the renovation after a referendum petition threatened to delay the project.

But the petition was withdrawn after county officials promised to commit to mental health and substance abuse clinics, allowing renovation plans to move forward again.

The Cavaliers plan to fund half the project. The other $70 million will come from public funding.

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The long-awaited transferal of one of MMA’s biggest stars to the squared-circle is edging ever closer, as Ronda Rousey appeared at WWE’s Mae Young classic to issue a challenge to the organisation’s elite group of female grapplers.

Rousey and fellow ‘Horsewomen’ Marina Shafir and Jessamyn Duke were on hand in support of the fourth spoke to their wheel, Shayna Baszler, as she progressed to the tournament’s third round. Whilst speaking about the pride in their colleague’s victory after the show, the trio were suddenly interrupted by three of WWE’s own ‘Four Horsewomen’, Charlotte, Becky Lynch, and Bayley.

The six then stood around awkwardly for a little while until Rousey laid down the gauntlet, telling the interlopers, “Name the time, name the place.” The prevailing theory is that the two quartets will collide in a traditional 4-vs-4 contest at November’s Survivor Series.

Rousey and co. are long admirers of the wrestling business – their ‘Four Horsewomen’ moniker derives from Ric Flair’s famous stable of the ’80s – and so the transition from the Octagon to the ring has seemed inevitable for a while. Ronda appeared at WrestleMania 31 where she vaulted the barricade to share the spotlight with The Rock in a high-profile angle opposite Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, whilst Shafir is currently engaged to NXT standout Bobby Roode. Baszler herself has obviously already made the switch, with WWE said to be extremely positive about her performances so far.

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Longtime owner Les Alexander has agreed to sell the Houston Rockets to local businessman Tilman Fertitta, the team announced Tuesday.

The deal was first reported by FOX26’s Mark Berman. Multiple reports peg the price at an NBA record $2.2 billion, exceeding the $2 billion paid by Steve Ballmer for the Los Angeles Clippers in 2014.

The sale includes the Toyota Center and is subject to approval by the NBA Board of Governors.

Alexander put the Rockets up for sale in July. He purchased the franchise back in 1993 for $85 million, overseeing the team to its only two NBA championships in 1994 and 1995.

“I am excited to welcome and pass the torch to Tilman,” Alexander said in the team statement. “I … don’t think I could have found anyone more capable of continuing the winning tradition of our Houston Rockets.”

Fertitta – with an estimated net worth of $2.8 billion – owns the Golden Nugget casino chain as well as several restaurants. He also hosts a CNBC reality show, “Billion Dollar Buyer.”

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Source: The Charlotte Observer

The Charlotte Observer released some excerpts from the upcoming book, “Second Nature: The Legacy of Ric Flair and the Rise of Charlotte” co-written by Ric Flair, Charlotte, and Brian Shields, which will be available on September 19. Here are a few of the highlights.

Ric Flair described the 2008 incident in Chapel Hill that led to the arrest of Charlotte, following a fight during the night with then-boyfriend Riki Johnson, who she later married.

“Johnson yelled, ‘Your daughter–!’ and that’s all I had to hear,” Flair said. “My daughter did everything for this guy. He could barely hold a job. I got up and said, ‘Do you think you’re a man behaving this way? You’re not a man.’ Ashley’s boyfriend exploded in a fury and started throwing punches at me. I just stood there. …Police arrived, and all hell broke loose. …When one of the police officers entered her space and asked her to put her hands behind her back, I heard her say, ‘Don’t touch me. I said don’t touch me.’ The next thing I knew, the officer used a Taser to subdue her. She was brought to the floor and taken into police custody in handcuffs. Her boyfriend assaulted me, I had bruises on my face, and somehow my daughter, who tried to be the peacekeeper, was arrested.”

Charlotte spoke about her rocky relationship with Riki Johnson, her first husband. She passed on a Division I volleyball scholarship at Appalachian State to live with Johnson, who was a student at UNC-Chapel Hill at the time.

“Riki was Jekyll and Hyde,” Charlotte said. “If he was happy, things were great; he was the man of my dreams. If he was angry, everyone knew it, and it would be taken out on someone or something.”

Charlotte also gave her perspective on the 2008 altercation in Chapel Hill, and alleges there were multiple instances in which arguments led to him becoming physically violent with her.

“Riki started swinging at me like we were in a street fight. Over his screams, I could hear his fists hit my arms. I managed to block most of the punches, but one shot got me in the ribs. I began to gasp for air, but he didn’t stop,” Charlotte said. In another instance, “Riki punched me right in the head. …I think about that girl now, and it brings tears to my eyes. How did I get there? Why was this going on? Why wasn’t I strong enough, brave enough, to end this?”

Charlotte also mentioned Johnson was doing drugs with her brother, Reid (who later passed away in 2013 from a drug overdose), while Reid stayed at her home. Once Charlotte found out, her brother left.

“Every day, another piece of my heart broke over what had happened,” Charlotte admitted.

You can read the full article by clicking here.

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Memphis Grizzlies head coach David Fizdale isn’t just “sticking to sports” in light of the recent events in Charlottesville, Va.

According to TNT’s David Aldridge, Fizdale is speaking out against the presence of two statues in his city – those of former Confederate president Jefferson Davis and Confederate army general Nathan Bedford Forrest, who was one of the first members of the Ku Klux Klan.

Both monuments were in their namesake parks in Memphis until they were renamed in 2013, but the statues still remain, something the Grizzlies head coach wants to have a hand in changing.

“My agenda is simple – I want those things out of our city, out of public view,” Fizdale said Saturday, according to Aldridge.

“I’m not even saying tear them up and melt them down. Put them in their proper context in history. Their proper context is in a civil rights museum, where you could put them in context and talk about how awful they were. I just feel our citizens should not have to see that involuntarily.”

Though Tennessee’s ‘Heritage Protection Act’ outlines that no statues or monuments erected on public property in honor of a military conflict may be removed or altered, the Memphis City Council will vote Tuesday on whether to approve the removal of the statues.

No one from the Grizzlies’ camp has asked Fizdale to stay out of it, so he’s continuing his pursuit.

“I think they support me for the most part,” he said. “Obviously, it’s edgy. It makes people uncomfortable. But that’s good. I want people to be uncomfortable. Our owner (Robert Pera), the owner of FedEx, our white owners of all the companies in the city, they’re the ones who have to step up and clean this out of our city.

“Money talks. What says more than people stepping up and saying ‘we’re not going to have this in our city?’ People have stepped up and bought tickets and supported them. I’m asking them to support us.”

Source: Jobbing Out

Ron Simmons spoke with the Jobbing Out podcast about his historic WCW World Title win 25 years ago, becoming the first African-American to win a World Title. Here are some of the highlights via PressBox:

Not knowing he was going to win the WCW Championship that night:

“That night there they saw a real moment in professional wrestling. Which is very rare that they see that kind of thing happen. Because there was no knowledge of that happening — it wasn’t even knowledge [for] me that that was going to take place that night. And I think that’s one of the biggest reasons [for] that reaction of the fans. Not only that, but they can see from the enthusiasm from me and all of the other guys that this was something that was not scripted of any kind. That wasn’t supposed to take place that night.”

Inspiring fans still today:

“It’s something that you never forget, that you always relive, and I’ve done that ever since that happened. … It’s something that you never get over and you are not only proud of yourself, but also it gives you special meaning when people come up to you and say, ‘Thank you for giving me that inspiration from when you won that title that night. Not just because of it being the title but because of it giving me inspiration to go on to do other things with my life.’ Now you can’t ask for a better compliment than that.”

Thinking the win would have a lasting impact:

“Absolutely not. And I would be lying if I said that because I had no idea of the impact that it was not only going to have on them but on me and on the world of professional wrestling. When I go back and look at that, just the crowd, just the look on their faces and the reaction of when that happened — listen, you’re not human if you don’t get chills when you look at that. Every time I see it … it just makes my flesh crawl and it almost brings me to tears, to be honest with you.”

You can listen to the full interview by clicking here or read the full highlights by clicking here.

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Owner Dan Gilbert has pledged he will never move the Cleveland Cavaliers out of the city. Yet as a businessman, that doesn’t mean he wouldn’t listen to offers for the franchise.

Sources outside the Cavs organization told Cleveland.com’s Joe Vardon they suspect Gilbert will consider selling the team within the next few years.

On one hand, there’s simple logic to gauging the market for the team. Gilbert became majority owner of the Cavs in 2005 for $375 million. Forbes estimated the value of the team at $1.2 billion earlier this year, and that figure is probably not far off – the Los Angeles Clippers set the NBA’s current benchmark by selling for $2 billion in 2014.

Furthermore, the Cavs reportedly lost a league-high $40 million during their 2015-16 championship season, although that was due in part to a $54 million luxury tax bill.

The bigger elephant in the room is LeBron James‘ future with his hometown team. Gilbert is said to be “fixated” on what decision LeBron makes next summer. The Cavaliers’ success is directly tied to James, and multiple reports have indicated that the main objective for the Cavs in honoring Kyrie Irving‘s trade request was to recoup young assets in the event of a rebuild.

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Speculation has started up online at PWInsider regarding a potential return of The Undertaker, following his apparent retirement after the main event of WrestleMania 33.

After losing to Roman Reigns at the Orlando super-show, the Deadman left his hat, gloves and trench coat in the ring, seemingly calling time on his legendary wrestling career. However, PWInsider have reported that The Undertaker could well be preparing for a future match – although such rumours should of course be taken with a grain of salt, especially considering the ostensible finality of his WrestleMania 33 appearance.

It has been noted that ‘Taker was spotted backstage at SummerSlam, and was also seen working out in ring before the pay per view. Additionally, John Cena’s promo on this week’s Monday Night Raw could be regarded as a further clue. Cena made a jibe at Undertaker while addressing Roman Reigns, referring to the Deadman as ‘a battered veteran at the end of his career with a bad hip’.

This, coupled with an apparent gong sound at the end of No Mercy hype vignettes, have led many online to believe that a return could well happen at the September 24th PPV in Los Angeles, California. Cena is set to compete against Roman Reigns on that card.

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According to the the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Batista is being considered a potential headliner for next year’s WWE Hall of Fame ceremony in New Orleans.

The 48 year old enjoyed an undoubtedly strong WWE career between 2002 and 2010, as well as a brief return in 2014 which saw him win the Royal Rumble and main event WrestleMania 30. The Washington D.C. native won a total of six world titles during his run, capturing the World Heavyweight Championship four times and the WWE Championship twice. He is also known for being the enforcer of Triple H’s Evolution stable, before breaking away from the group and turning face in 2005, enjoying a memorable feud with The Game thereafter.

Batista – now perhaps better known by his given name, Dave Bautista – is also one of WWE’s most successful mainstream stars of the modern era. His acting career has seen him star in numerous feature films, most notably Guardians of the Galaxy and Spectre.

Many have already speculated that this rumoured induction could deliberately coincide with the release of Avengers: Infinity War, which is thought to come out shortly after WrestleMania 34. Batista will appear in the film as his Guardians character, Drax the Destroyer.

Despite such theories, there’s little doubt that Batista would fully deserve a Hall of Fame induction. He is often thought of as one of the major stars of the Ruthless Aggression Era, alongside names such as John Cena, Brock Lesnar, and Randy Orton.

Texas A&M v Arkansas

Despite failing to earn a contract following a recent workout with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, former NFL quarterback Johnny Manziel is still eager to play in the CFL, a source told Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.

Manziel is reportedly continuing to discuss a potential contract with the Tiger-Cats, though no deal is on the horizon.

“This is something he very much wants,” the source told Fowler.

Manziel worked out for the Tiger-Cats last week but the team decided not to sign him, reportedly because it saw “too many red flags” in the former Heisman Trophy winner. Manziel repeatedly had his work ethic and dedication to the sport questioned while playing with the Cleveland Browns.

Hamilton owns the Manziel’s negotiating rights, meaning the 24-year-old can’t sign with another CFL team unless the Tiger-Cats trade his rights.

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Hamilton Tiger-Cats owner Bob Young issued an apology one day after the club hired former Baylor coach Art Briles and then released him amid intense public and league pressure.

Young apologized via the club’s website for the decision to bring in the disgraced coach:

We made a large and serious mistake. We want to apologize to our fans, corporate partners and the Canadian Football League. It has been a difficult season and we are searching for answers. This is clearly not one of them. We have listened, we are reviewing our decision-making processes and we will learn. We will go on. We want to thank our fans, partners and the CFL for their help and support.

Briles was dismissed by Baylor in May in the wake of a sexual assault scandal that rocked the institution. CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie convinced the Tiger-Cats to drop the 61-year-old last night, just hours after they announced the hiring, according to Drew Edwards of 3DownNation.

Hamilton is winless on the season and sits dead last in the CFL in a number of offensive categories. Briles’ offense regularly ranked among the best in college football, and his familiarity with new head coach June Jones likely led to the move to bring him in.

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Teemu Selanne and Paul Kariya are getting the respect they deserve.

The Anaheim Ducks will honor one of the most dynamic duos the NHL has ever seen in a ceremony before their Nov. 19 game against the Florida Panthers, the team announced Tuesday. The ceremony will fall less than a week after the tandem’s induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame on Nov. 13.

Selanne and Kariya played in 308 games together for the Ducks back when they were Mighty, tallying a combined 783 points (2.54 points per game).

Selanne’s No. 8 already hangs in the Honda Center rafters. He’s the franchise’s all-time leader in games played (966), goals (457), and points (988), and was an integral part of the organization’s only Stanley Cup victory back in 2007.

Kariya, who was the first superstar in the club’s existence, ranks first in team history in goals per game (0.49) and points per game (1.10).

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Rockets owner Leslie Alexander continues to show generosity toward the city of Houston, increasing his donation for Hurricane Harvey relief efforts from $4 million to $10 million on Tuesday, according to Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle.

A spokesman confirmed Alexander’s pledge to Feigen, but the team didn’t announce it because the owner didn’t want the focus to be on him.

In a statement Monday, Alexander and the Rockets said, “Our hearts are heavy seeing the devastation that so many of our friends, family, and neighbors are experiencing.”

Alexander isn’t the only member of the Rockets organization who’s raised money for relief efforts – Chris Paul has donated a combined $75,000 for flood victims.

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Source: Newsday

As a pioneer of pro wrestling, Ric Flair’s influence on the wrestlers that came after him is immeasurable. Kurt Angle revealed to Newsday that without Flair’s advice, he might not have ever been in the WWE.

“Ric was the guy that I got advice from before I started in the business,” Angle said. “He’s the one that redirected me from [World Championship Wrestling] to WWE, told me Vince McMahon would know what to do with me, and said not to go to WCW.”

The rest is history. Angle rose to the top of the company and put together a stellar career that culminated in an induction into the WWE Hall of Fame. Angle also discussed what he learned from Flair from an in-ring perspective.

“But what I learned from Ric was how to give to the business and not take. He always made sure his opponent looked better than he did,” Angle explained. “What was important to him was the match, not himself, and I took that advice and made sure when I performed in the ring I made my opponent looked better than me, and I made sure it was the best match I could possibly make it. He was a very giving wrestler, and I did the same because of Ric Flair.”

Flair is currently recovering from a medical emergency caused by multiple organ damage. Last Saturday his manager tweeted that Flair is condition is progressing and improving.

Colorado Avalanche vs Philadelphia Flyers

No Philadelphia Flyer will wear No. 88 ever again.

The Flyers will retire Eric Lindros’ jersey on Jan. 18, 2018 prior to a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs, the team announced Monday.

One of the most physically dominant players in NHL history, Lindros tallied 659 points in 486 career games with the Flyers, winning the Hart Trophy in the 1994-95 season, and carrying the team all the way to the 1997 Stanley Cup Final. The Big E was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame as part of the 2016 class.

The jersey retirement may seem like a long time coming, but the organization historically waits until a player is inducted into the Hall of Fame before retiring his jersey, according to Dave Isaac of the Courier-Post.

Lindros, of course, was touched by the decision.

“I am deeply humbled and honored that the Flyers are going to retire my jersey,” said Lindros. “I am so thankful to the entire organization for this incredible recognition. I look forward to sharing this moment with my family, friends, teammates, and of course Flyers fans, who mean so much to me.”

Lindros will join exclusive company as only the sixth Flyer to have his jersey retired. His No. 88 will join the numbers of Bernie Parent, Mark Howe, Barry Ashebee, Bill Barber, and Bobby Clarke in the Wells Fargo Center rafters.

“Eric has made an incredible and lasting impact on the Flyers organization, our fans, and the game of hockey as a whole,” Flyers President Paul Holmgren said. “We could not be more proud to raise his number 88 to the rafters. We look forward to what is anticipated to be a historic night for the Flyers.”

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Proud as he is, Dana White has seen enough of Conor McGregor in the ring.

Moments after McGregor submitted an impressive performance despite losing to Floyd Mayweather by TKO in his pro boxing debut Saturday, the UFC president heaped praise on his lightweight champ before stating McGregor belongs in the Octagon – not the squared circle.

“I would rather he did not (box again),” White said at the post-fight presser. “This isn’t what he does. He’s a mixed martial artist, where he goes in, and he fights and he uses all of his weapons, and tonight he was only allowed to use his hands. I think he did great tonight, I don’t think he has anything left to prove. I would rather he fight in mixed martial arts.”

White’s stance is no surprise, as the promotion is rumored to have set its sights on UFC 219 – its final pay-per-view event of the year – for McGregor’s first defense of the lightweight strap he won last November. “The Notorious,” for one, appeared game for returning to the cage moments after dropping Saturday’s bout, judging by his comments to to Showtime’s Jim Gray.

As for whether Saturday’s crossover bout would prove the first of many, White said he was looking forward to “getting back to the UFC and doing what I do.”

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Here comes the bride.

UFC commissioner Dana White dropped a bombshell Friday, casually revealing that former women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey will marry fiance and fellow fighter Travis Browne on Saturday – the day of the Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor superfight.

“Rousey gets married tomorrow. Tomorrow is her wedding,” White said on “The Rich Eisen Show,” according to Alexander K. Lee of MMA Fighting.

“And she’s in a good place, she’s really happy, and she hasn’t announced her retirement or anything like that. She’s focusing on this wedding.”

White only found out about the wedding in a conversation with Rousey on Friday, and initially told her he’d attend. But White reneged when Rousey revealed the wedding was Saturday.

Rousey and Browne announced their engagement in April, four months after her shocking, 48-second loss to Amanda Nunes at UFC 207.

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Much has been made about mixed martial artist Conor McGregor’s transition to the boxing ring and while Saturday’s bout against world champion Floyd Mayweather has the sports world buzzing, one group of professionals aren’t on board.

The Association of Ringside Physicians, a constituency of more than 100 doctors, contend that McGregor doesn’t stand a chance against Mayweather and have expressed concern over his safety.

“We were very surprised this bout was even sanctioned and was going to be permitted to carry on,” Larry Lovelace, a doctor and president of the association said, according to Joe Depaolo of the New York Times.

“The thing I really fear, truly fear, is that somebody’s going to get really hurt in this upcoming fight.”

Mayweather enters the fight with a perfect 49-0 record and has been boxing professionally since 1996. McGregor, though, will be making his debut in the ring despite his experience in the Octagon.

Richard Steele, a retired Hall of Fame referee, echoed Lovelace’s thoughts on the matter, expressing similar concern over the bout.

“Here’s a guy from one sport, challenging the world’s best in his own sport. I really don’t know how it’s going to work,” Steele said.

When asked if he thought McGregor’s style would match up well against Mayweather, Steele said: “He can’t kick. He can’t elbow. He can’t do nothing. Nothing that he’s used to doing that makes him a great MMA fighter.”

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Tammy “Sunny” Sytch was recently a guest on The Ross Report podcast with Jim Ross where she talked about the site she now works for, which is actually a members section on her own site.

“The way I came across it; I have some friends that are actually in the porn industry. We’ve been friends for years. When you are an artist, you get to know people from all walks of life and you get to know them for the type of people that they are. I don’t judge anybody; I’ve never judged anyone. Well, one of my good friends, her name is Kendra Lust, she’s a big name porn star. I’ve noticed on her page, she had this link to her page called, ‘Only Fans’, and I asked her about it and she said that she puts her porn content on the page, but she said anybody can do this page anybody that they want to do it,” Sytch explained.

“For instance, So-Cal Val does it as well, but in other ends of the spectrum. So, what I did was I am kind of in-between. So-Cal Val does it where she posts cute pictures of her posing in fashion, with her fiancé out in England, just like cute things like that, and she charges x-amount of dollars for it.

“Kendra Lust is the opposite where she shows her hardcore porn content for x-amount of dollars. I am in the middle of the two of them. I post mostly selfies and pictures; like, a lot of pictures that I have had on my phone for over the years. Sometimes it’s just cute selfies of me sitting in my car, or the beach, cooking, or doing something like that.

“Then I also take it to the next step with a little bit of racier content; it’s not XXX-porn, it’s more like Playboy type material,” Sytch explained. “Some selfies are just like a Playboy content; it’s not hardcore stuff, it’s not crazy, I think I only have four videos on there, with hundreds of selfies, or something like that, but that’s basically it. It’s harmless. I am able to charge a little more a month because I do show more than her; not taking anything away from her. She can show whatever she wants on her page, but she’s never shown any nudity in her career, so she charges a bit less, but I can charge more because of it. I charge a little more than Kendra Lust as well because I think her content is available already everywhere that they are not going to pay the high-end dollar just to see her stuff because they can see it for free on the internet.”

Sytch, who is a 2011 WWE Hall of Famer, has claimed she turned down an offer to pose for Playboy Magazine in 1997. She went on to pose nude for Missy Hyatt’s adult website Wrestling Vixxxens. Last year, Vivid Entertainment released a pornographic film featuring Sytch titled Sunny Side Up: In Through the Backdoor.

Also while on The Ross Report, Sytch was asked whether or not Joanie “Chyna” Laurer should be in the WWE Hall of Fame and why she is not enshrined.

“1,000% yes, [Joanie “Chyna” Laurer] should be in. I don’t think the X-rated porn should have anything to do with it; I really don’t,” said Sytch. “The way I look at that is she should be honored with what she did in professional wrestling; who cares what she did to make a living? Who cares? Somebody who moves on from professional wrestling do millions of things; from opening a business, to become teachers, or whatever, but she chose this, big deal!”

“Let’s give her the honor for what she did in the professional wrestling business. Not only was she one of my best friends towards the end, up until the time she died, but I think with the strides that she made in this business, I believe she really opened up the doors for women’s wrestling; not for Divas, but for the women’s wrestling industry. She was wrestling men and it was believable because she was such a big personality, such a huge human being, and she should be rewarded for what she did. Should her porn career matter after her wrestling career? Absolutely not!”

You can listen to the entire episode of Tammy “Sunny” Sytch on The Ross Report by clicking here.

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In his first media availability since Ezekiel Elliott was suspended, Jerry Jones chose not to comment on the situation. The Dallas Cowboys owner will remain relatively quiet until a final decision on the suspension is made.

“I don’t have anything to say about anything with the commissioner or with anything to do with Zeke at this particular time,” Jones said Saturday after the Cowboys’ preseason win, according to Kate Hairopoulos of the Dallas Morning News.

Elliott reportedly has an appeal hearing set for Aug. 29, and Jones said he wants to let that process play out before commenting, though he confirmed the Cowboys are supportive of their star rusher.

“Because I have said I just want to get my thoughts together, see some more cards played, and just see kind of how this thing turns out,” said Jones, when asked about why he won’t comment. “I know that they’ve got a real important date set and want that to have every opportunity it can to have things in its best light.

“But we certainly are in support of Zeke.”

Elliott dressed but didn’t play in the Cowboys’ contest Saturday, but Jones said he “wouldn’t be surprised” if the running back got some snaps in the team’s third preseason game.

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Having spent five full years living in Charlottesville, Va. while starring for the Virginia Cavaliers, Milwaukee Bucks guard and reigning Rookie of the Year Malcolm Brogdon is well positioned to weigh in on the events that transpired in the small college town over the previous week.

“To see this happen in a place that I call home is sort of jarring for me,” Brogdon told Sports Illustrated. “But if I were to be honest, the level of hate and blatant racism that still dominates the minds of so many Americans today – it’s not shocking to me. I think at the end of the day, you have to call it what it is: I think it is white supremacy and I think it’s domestic terrorism.”

Brogdon cited LeBron James‘ leadership among his fellow athletes in decrying bigotry in the wake of white supremacist rallies which took place in Charlottesville last weekend. James recently denounced the words (and perceived inaction) of President Donald Trump, saying the Commander-in-Chief has made hate “fashionable again.”

“I think he’s been articulate in the way he’s spoken, and he’s been truthful,” Brogdon said of the Cleveland Cavaliers superstar. “I don’t think he’s tried to shy away from being truthful, and making sure that people hear his voice. I think he’s done an awesome job.”

As to whether Brogdon would consider protesting the national anthem, a controversial demonstration closely associated with free-agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick and now Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch of the National Football League, the 24-year-old was non-committal.

“I’m not sure,” Brogdon said. “I think everyone has different methods in which they’re going to protest.”

What Brogdon is sure about is that athletes must continue to have a voice, and not succumb to the notion they should just “stick to sports.”

“I think it’s extremely offensive. I think it puts us in a bubble. It simply implies that because we’re athletes we don’t have a say or opinion, or that we don’t have the educational background to comment on things outside of sports. I just think it’s absurd,” he said.

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This time it’s Dwyane Wade‘s turn to join LeBron James‘ team.

Wade, a veteran player stuck on a rebuilding franchise, is expected to reach a buyout with the Chicago Bulls in the coming months. Where Wade would go afterwards is the bigger question.

Cleveland.com reporter Joe Vardon says people in James’ camp believe Wade will choose the Cleveland Cavaliers.

“As of right now, people close to James are fairly confident that, at some point this year, Dwyane Wade is going to end up on the Cavs,” Vardon said on the Wine and Gold Talk Podcast.

Wade and James famously partnered up in Miami and made four consecutive runs to the Finals, producing two championships. In 2014, James took his talents back to Ohio, and Wade left South Beach two years later when a messy round of contract negotiations led him to join his hometown Bulls.

Teaming up with James would give Wade a realistic shot at adding a fourth ring to his resume. James has remained at the peak of his powers, but the 35-year-old Wade is clearly in the decline phase of his career.

But there’s a few more hurdles that need to be crossed before any reunion is satisfied. Wade would first need to negotiate a buyout with a famously stingy Bulls organization, then accept the minimal money Cleveland can offer to switch cities for the second time in two years.

But the addition of Wade would undoubtedly give the Cavaliers a much-needed boost after an unproductive offseason. Although he’s past his prime, Wade still averaged 18.3 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 3.8 assists last season.

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John Cena could be adding another major movie to his resume.

The WWE superstar, who will star opposite Hailee Steinfeld in the upcoming “Transformers” spin-off “Bumblebee,” is also being targeted for the lead in a comedic reboot of “Knight Rider,” according to Chris Agar of ScreenRant.

The Weinstein Company, the studio behind the project, reportedly envisions Cena in the role of Michael Knight, which was played by David Hasselhoff in the 1980s television series, and comedian Kevin Hart as the potential voice of KITT. Agar notes that neither Cena nor Hart have been officially cast, and that “the Weinstein Company is simply interested in getting them on-board.”

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Source: People

According to a report by People, Nikki Bella has been cast in the upcoming season of Dancing with the Stars.

A source tells People that Nikki and Drew Scott of the HGTV series Property Brothers have both signed onto compete on the upcoming season of ABC’s long-running reality dance competition series.

Season 25 of Dancing with the Stars premieres opposite Raw on Monday, Sept. 18.

Nikki would be the third wrestler to compete on Dancing with the Stars, following Stacy Keibler and Chris Jericho.

In early 2006, Keibler, competed in the second season of the show, alongside her dance partner, Tony Dovolani. Keibler was eliminated in the final episode, coming in third to NFL legend Jerry Rice, who placed second in the final round of the competition, and singer Drew Lachey, the winner of the season. Two of the judges, Bruno Tonioli and Len Goodman, felt Keibler should have at least placed second. Oddsmakers had also considered her the favorite to win the competition.

Jericho competed on season 12 in spring 2011, alongside Cheryl Burke. He was the fifth contestant eliminated on the show.

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Browns tight end Seth DeValve became the man that national-anthem protester Michael Bennett had been hoping for, as he joined a group of Cleveland players who chose to kneel and huddle during The Star-Spangled Banner before a preseason game against the New York Giants on Monday night.

DeValve is believed to be the first white NFL player to kneel during the anthem this year, and the second-year pro opened up about why he was motivated to do so.

“The United States is the greatest country in the world. It is because it provides opportunities to its citizens that no other country does,” DeValve said, according to USA TODAY Sports. “The issue is that it doesn’t provide equal opportunity to everybody. And I wanted to support my African-American teammates today who wanted to take a knee.”

DeValve’s wife, Erica Harris, is also African-American.

“We wanted to draw attention to the fact that there’s things in this country that still need to change. I myself will be raising children that don’t look like me, and I want to do my part as well to do everything I can to raise them in a better environment than we have right now.”

Browns linebackers Jamie Collins and Christian Kirksey, running backs Duke Johnson, Terrence Magee, Isaiah Crowell and Brandon Wilds, wide receivers Kenny Britt and Ricardo Louis, safeties Jabrill Peppers and Calvin Pryor, and cornerback Jamar Taylor all knelt for the anthem alongside DeValve.

Others, including rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer, offensive tackle Shon Coleman, punter Britton Colquitt, cornerback Jason McCourty, and offensive guard Marcus Martin, showed their support by standing next to the circle and placing a hand on a shoulder of a kneeling teammate.

Last week, Cleveland head coach Hue Jackson clarified his comments that initially indicated he’d be unhappy with any protests by his team, saying he would respect any decision to kneel during the anthem.

NFL: Preseason-Denver Broncos at Dallas Cowboys

John Lynch would like to clarify his stance on protests during the national anthem.

Speaking on the subject earlier in the week, the San Francisco 49ers general manager stated that players have the right to protest racial injustice in America and that he’ll “always respect people’s rights.” However, he also characterized the practice as “divisive,” giving rise to the perception he wouldn’t tolerate players sitting for the national anthem.

“If I could take one thing back, I would have changed that word,” Lynch said Friday on KNBR radio, according to Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee. “Because of the negative connotation. But I was really trying to make the point that our game should be a beacon for what can be.”

Lynch had previously explained he sees football as a unifier of people of various ethnicities and socioeconomic backgrounds and pointed to a scene during Thursday night’s preseason game in Philadelphia in which a white player put his arm around a black teammate who stood with a raised right fist.

“When I saw that picture of Chris Long and Malcolm Jenkins, I think that’s exactly what I was speaking to and what I think is so great about football, of how I think our society can be and how it should be – of people coming together,” Lynch said.

“When you’re talking to your 10-year-old and you’re trying to explain what’s going on (in Charlottesville) – it’s sad, it’s disgusting, it’s unbelievable that these things still exist. So I want to go a step further (and say) not only do I respect, but I understand the motivations of these players that are trying to do something about it. I want to be very clear with that, that’s where my heart is.”

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Wrestling fans concerned about WWE’s association with US President Donald Trump have been protesting outside Brooklyn’s Barclays Centre ahead of SummerSlam weekend, according to Gothamist.

The company will host its second-biggest show of the year from the New York borough on Sunday night, 24 hours after the annual NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn show.

And whilst it has been making local headlines for Triple H’s cameo appearance on Jimmy Fallon’s Late Night show, a group of NY residents have organised a rally after a controversial week for the White House.

The President provoked strong criticism from sections of the press when he was said to have hinted at similarities between Neo-Nazis and counter-protesters following scenes of violence in Charlottesville last weekend.

Noting that WWE has effectively cut its ties with Hulk Hogan after a tape of its former poster-boy using a racial epithet emerged two years ago, the protesters have suggested that Trump should accordingly be removed from the Hall of Fame.

John Stevens, among those leading the calls, told Gothamist: “What Trump has done is remarkably worse than what Hogan did, since he’s dividing the country by siding with neo-Nazis and white nationalists.”

He went on to suggest that, by having Trump remain a part of its Hall of Fame, WWE is – in effect – endorsing his brand of politics.

Another fan, Stephen Miller, is quoted as saying: If they choose to leave him in the HOF I will question whether or not I’ll continue to watch their product.”

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Details continue to emerge about Ric Flair’s recent health issues.

The WWE legend underwent surgery Monday for what was thought to be an intestinal blockage and wound up having part of his bowel removed, according to Sports Illustrated’s Justin Barrasso, who cites a source close to the Flair family.

The surgery, though, led to complications and as result Flair to be in hospital for over a month, Barrasso added

Flair’s fiancee, Wendy Barlow, told TMZ Sports on Wednesday that Flair is suffering from “multiple organ problems” and remains in critical condition. She also denied Flair had colon surgery, as WWE Hall of Fame announcer Gene Okerlund indicated on Facebook.

Flair was interviewed by Sports Illustrated on Aug. 9, during which he spoke about his struggles with alcohol.

“I had one vice,” he admitted. “I’m not going to point my finger at anybody else. My vice was drinking. I didn’t have any pain issues, addiction problems, marijuana, cocaine, nothing like that. I dealt with the fact that I kept myself up all night and had a good time, but I never put a good time ahead of my personal loyalty to myself or working out. I never had a great body, but I was always in the best shape.”

Daniel Bryan will return wrestle in 2018, according to his wife, Brie Bella.

In an interview with From The Top Rope Podcast, Brie revealed that her husband has been undergoing Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy, and has already had around 40 treatments across the USA. She also stated that, should he get the ago-ahead from doctors, she would be fully supportive of his return to wrestling, adding ‘This is your dream and passion. You have one life to live and I will never hold you back, because I love to wrestle and I would hate if someone told me you can’t do it. And if the WWE doesn’t allow it, then I said, go somewhere else.’

This is very interesting for fans of independent wrestling, as it raises the issue of where Bryan would likely go if WWE refused to allow him to wrestle under their banner. His contract, of course, expires in 2018. Ring of Honor would seem a frontrunner, with Daniel being a former champion and fan favourite there.

In the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Meltzer noted that while Bryan wouldn’t likely make more money on the indies than he would in WWE, he’d certainly be able to come close with a lighter, hand-picked schedule. He also added that Bryan has never really been about the money, and the thought of having better matches with a wider variety of opponents would be very tempting.

Meltzer also noted Bryan’s in-ring return would likely dominate wrestling news in 2018.

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John Tavares will keep an eye on the business side of hockey this season.

The New York Islanders captain, who’s eligible to become an unrestricted free agent in 2018, is willing to negotiate terms of an extension during the regular season, he told NHL.com’s Brian Compton on Thursday.

That obviously gives both sides a much bigger window within which to reach an agreement, although a bit of a cloud of uncertainty will hang over the situation until a deal is reached with the Islanders or otherwise.

Ownership has made it clear the face of the franchise won’t reach a state of free agency, while Tavares recently stated things are a lot more complicated than people realize.

Meanwhile, the countdown to July 1, 2018 rolls on.

NBA: Sacramento Kings at Philadelphia 76ers

Rudy Gay hasn’t been part of a winning organization since he left the Memphis Grizzlies in 2013.

So when he had his pick of the litter in free agency this summer, Gay chose to join the San Antonio Spurs on a bargain two-year deal because he wanted to get back to winning following four miserable years in Sacramento.

“I think it was a do-or-die point in my career,” Gay told Jabari Young of the San Antonio Express News. “I wanted to be with an organization that was known for winning and can help me raise my game to the next level.”

Gay was rather candid in his introductory interview on Wednesday. The 31-year-old rediscovered his motivation for playing basketball while rehabbing his torn Achilles. Sharing conversations with Kobe Bryant – who suffered the same injury – helped Gay get back into the right mindset.

“I kind of lost that. This injury really made me train like that. I was mad. I trained mad. I trained like an animal,” Gay said.

His only goal is to help the Spurs win another championship. Gay says he’s even willing to change his game and come off the bench if that’s what Gregg Popovich asks of him, even though he’s started nearly every game of his career since his rookie season.

“Whatever it takes. If I’m a sixth man, I’m going to be the best sixth man in the league. If I’m a starter, I’m going to try and be one of the best small forwards in the league. That’s just the type of player I am.”

Gay averaged 18.7 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 2.8 assists last season connecting on 37.2 percent from deep while splitting time between small and power forward.

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Michael Bisping’s days in 4-ounce gloves are numbered.

In a Monday appearance on “The MMA Hour,” the UFC middleweight champion revealed his upcoming date with Georges St-Pierre at UFC 217 might be his last.

“There’s a possibility this might be my last fight. I don’t know if I’ll ever fight again after this,” Bisping said. “What a way to go out if it is.

“I don’t know. We’ll see. We’ll see what the future holds. There’s a possibility, yeah. This may be my last fight, so if anyone wants to see Michael Bisping get knocked out, this is your last chance to do it, guys.”

The 38-year-old Brit won the title with a first-round KO of Luke Rockhold at UFC 199, a decade into his promotional stint and a dozen years into his 37-fight career after battling injuries and rebounding from several failed attempts to earn a title shot. In January, he publicly mulled hanging up his gloves following two more wins, but going out on top against the greatest welterweight of all time – at Madison Square Garden, no less – is not outside the realm of possibility.

“I’ve done it for so long. I’ve done it for so long now, and there’s other things to do in life,” Bisping said. “I mean, I still love this, don’t get me wrong, but you can’t do it forever. You can’t do it forever, and Georges should’ve stayed retired. He should’ve retired as a champion. I’m going to beat Georges and I’ll retire as a champion – maybe – I haven’t made my mind up on that yet. It depends, if there’s enough money involved, maybe I’ll stick around, but as of right now, I don’t know.”

Bisping said his inner circle has been urging him to retire for some time. With a regular gig on the UFC’s FOX Sports 1 desk and a career on both the big and small screen, he’s far better prepared for post-Octagon life than most, although he maintained retiring with a win at MSG would maximize those revenue streams.

He welcomes St-Pierre to the middleweight division Nov. 4 in the main event of a star-studded UFC 217.

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The Calgary Flames aren’t leaving town if they don’t get a new arena. At least not in the short term.

On Tuesday, Flames president and CEO Ken King announced the team is no longer pursuing plans to construct a new facility in Calgary, classifying recent meetings with city officials as “spectacularly unproductive.”

The update comes after King revealed the two sides have not sat at the negotiation tables in more than a month, despite a willingness from Flames’ ownership to move away from its CalgaryNEXT proposal in favor of the city’s preferred Victoria Park site.

“We would not say we’re not interested (in Victoria Park),” King told reporters. “In fact, we’re interested enough to put up a very, very substantial participation, but apparently it’s not enough.

“It’s unfortunate, because I really thought we had something that would work, and it would seem pretty clear that it’s not. It doesn’t look like we’re going to get there, and I think it’s time that we stopped pretending and were a little more direct and a little more honest with our fans and with our city about that fact.”

There is frustration on the part of Flames’ ownership, particularly when their Alberta counterpart, the Edmonton Oilers, unveiled the new Rogers Place last season, a project that was largely publicly funded and came to fruition after Oilers owner Daryl Katz considered Seattle as a possible new home for the team if it was unable to land a new arena in Edmonton.

“This is the business side. It’s the boring side (but) it’s important. You’ve got to be viable, you’ve got to be able to secure your long-term future,” King added. “But I think our fans want to know if our two new goalies can stop pucks, if we can compete, and if we can beat the guys up north. Apparently we can’t beat them on the building front but maybe we can beat them on the ice.”

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, on hand for the announcement, echoed King’s sentiments on the city’s inability to see value in a new arena.

“One of the dynamics here that strikes me as a different, particularly say from Edmonton, I don’t get a sense from the city that there is a commitment to or a belief in the importance of having the right infrastructure and having a major league sports team,” Bettman told reporters. “I don’t see the same level of city commitment here that I’ve seen in other places.

“This team needs a new arena. This city needs a new arena. But there is no realistic prospect of it coming forward based on everything that has and has not transpired. The city was made aware last February as to what it would take to do an arena; it was their best shot at getting it done. The city is nowhere close to embracing that, so there was no point in continuing.”

While negotiations appear to be at a standstill, with King stating he does not see an immediate arena resolution on the horizon, he added that the possibility of relocating from Calgary is not something ownership has discussed.

That was most evident in June, when King shot down relocation talk after Flames’ president of hockey operations Brian Burke mentioned Quebec City as a potential landing spot for the franchise.

“In the short term, nobody should doubt the Flames’ or their ownership’s commitment to the community,” Bettman added. “But at some point, I envision without a new building there will be consequences that everybody is going to have to deal with.”

The Flames came to Calgary in 1980 after spending the franchise’s first eight seasons in Atlanta. In 1983, the team then made its home at the Scotiabank Saddledome, currently the NHL’s oldest arena, save for the since-renovated Madison Square Garden.