Posts Tagged ‘Criticism’

When news first broke in September that Jimmy Butler had requested a trade from the Minnesota Timberwolves, teammate Andrew Wiggins‘ brother Nick reacted with joy. And given the reported tensions between Butler and some of his young teammates, it was believed the feeling was shared by Andrew.

Yet, with Butler seemingly stuck with the Wolves for the time being, Wiggins is spinning the current situation as a positive.

“All I know is, when we start playing the real games, Jimmy is someone you want on your team,” Wiggins said Sunday, per the Star Tribune’s Kent Youngblood. “At the end of the day, people can say what they want to say.”

Wiggins has reportedly been a target of Butler’s ire since last season due to his work ethic and defensive lapses. It’s a cloud that’s hung over the Canadian throughout his four NBA seasons, as many believe Wiggins’ passivity has kept him from making the leap into the league’s elite.

Butler himself told ESPN’s Rachel Nichols that the 23-year-old Wiggins is the most “god-gifted player” on the Timberwolves, but then essentially questioned his drive.

Whether the Butler saga can light a fire under Wiggins remains to be seen. They’re expected to start together on the wings when Minnesota opens the regular season Wednesday in San Antonio.

“He’s a winner,” Wiggins added of Butler. “I feel like, no matter where he is, he’s right here now. He’s going to give it all, because that’s all he knows.”

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We noted earlier how RAW Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey recently spoke with TMZ and called The Bella Twins a “bunch of untrustworthy b—–s” when discussing her upcoming WWE Evolution title defense against Nikki Bella. Rousey also referred to the twins as “Do Nothing Bellas” on social media, a reference to her “Do Nothing b—–s” line.

Nikki fired back on Instagram today, which was also covered by TMZ. Nikki called Rousey the “Do Nothing b—h” and bragged on her pro wrestling career.

Nikki wrote, “In response to your post @rondarousey You may think I’m a “DNB” but that’s because you been here for what maybe 20 RAW’s? I’ve been here for almost 12 years. Since day one I have wanted change for the women at WWE. This “DNB” has been in the ring with Victoria, Natalya, Krissy Vaine, Shantelle Malawski, Taryn Terrell, Brooke Adams, Michelle McCool, Layla, Vickie Guerrero, Melina, Mickie James, Maria, Katie Lea, Jillian Hall, Maryse, Alicia Fox, Gail Kim, Candice Michelle, Beth Phoenix, Rosa Mendes, Eve Torres, Kelly Kelly, Awesome Kong, Naomi, Cameron, Eva Marie, Jojo, Summer Rae, Kaitlyn, Tamina, AJ Lee, Paige, Charlotte, Sasha Banks, Becky Lynch, Carmella, Alexa Bliss, Asuka, Riott Squad and more. I defended a championship for 301 days. I have executive produced and starred in two reality shows, one about women’s wrestling, while on the road wrestling. I even broke my neck for this business. So if you want to talk about a “DNB” look at yourself, because in this Evolution of women’s wrestling, you’re the “DNB” #bellalution #evolution”

Nazem Kadri says the Toronto Maple Leafs will use Lars Eller‘s remarks about them as motivation going forward.

“Bulletin board material,” Kadri said Monday when asked about Eller’s postgame assessment following a 4-2 victory by Toronto over the Washington Capitals on Saturday, according to NHL.com’s Dave McCarthy.

“I don’t know how he can be serious with that comment,” the Leafs center added. “I understand they’re coming off hanging a (championship) banner, but you’ve got to give teams respect that have earned it, and I certainly think we’ve earned it.”

Eller told reporters Saturday night that he wouldn’t put the Leafs on the same level as the Pittsburgh Penguins, and then elaborated on that.

“Nothing special, really. We’re used to playing against (Sidney) Crosby and (Evgeni) Malkin. Everything kind of drops from there, so it’s not that special, to be honest. It’s a good team, like a lot of others. They’ll probably be a (playoff) team, I’d think.”

The Leafs and Capitals will meet again Jan. 23 in Toronto.

The UFC has been criticized in many corners for the way the company chose to promote the UFC 229 main event between Khabib Nurmagomedovand Conor McGregor. And that criticism has only intensified after a near-riot occurred at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas following Nurmagomedov’s fourth-round submission victory on Saturday night.

At the heart of the critiques is the fact the UFC incorporated footage of McGregor’s April 5 attack on a van containing Nurmagomedov and several other fighters following the UFC 223 media day in Brooklyn, N.Y. That the company would use footage of a criminal act for which McGregor copped a plea deal only served to add fuel to the fire on the very real grudge between the two fighters, ultimately leading to the post-fight melee.

But UFC president Dana White is pushing back against the critics. Appearing on the ESPN show “First Take” on Monday, White was asked to respond to a USA Today quote by a cornerman (actually manager Ali Abdelaziz) for Nurmagomedov.

““Let’s be real,” Abdelaziz said to USA Today. “The UFC promoted this fight with the videos. They didn’t promote this as going to a golf tournament. They promoted this as a fight.”

White was then asked if the UFC was culpable at all for the situation by how they promoted the fight.

“Dumbest quote I have ever heard in my life. You are an idiot whoever wrote that. This is a fight. The way that we promoted this fight, was exactly the way that this thing played out,” White said. “That’s all part of the storyline.”

White said that this is far from the first time two fighters who have competed against one another have legitimately disliked each other, nor is it the first time the company has incorporated real-life hatred between opponents into their publicity building up the bout.

“Believe me, we’ve had, almost 20 years I’ve been doing this,” White said. “We’ve had plenty of fights, where there’s tons of bad blood, and all kinds of things like this happen, and, you know, we don’t have fights after the fights. We’ve had scuffles with guys in the back, I mean, this is the fight business, and a lot of people don’t like each other.”

At the end of the day, T-Mobile Arena drew a gate of nearly $17.2 million, and the bout is expected to the biggest event in UFC history. So White dismisses the idea his company crossed a line in the way it handled the fight promotion.

“That’s just, that’s a stupid opinion,” White said.

Alex Bregman is ready to show North America what it’s been missing.

Bregman and the Houston Astros completed a three-game sweep of the Cleveland Indians on Monday afternoon to advance to their second straight American League Championship Series. And while he was happy to be moving on, the third baseman wasn’t pleased with the schedule makers giving the defending World Series champions three matinee contests during the Division Series.

Houston likely received the afternoon games because the other ALDS features the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees, a historic rivalry that was given the prime-time window. That didn’t sit well with Bregman, who gave the league – and perhaps more accurately, its television partners – a piece of his mind following Monday’s game.

“Does Tiger Woods tee off at 8 a.m. when he’s going to win a Masters? Does Floyd Mayweather fight the first fight of the night? No, he’s the main event, right?” Bregman told MLB Network, via SportsTalk 790’s Ben DuBose. “So the ‘Stros need to be playing prime-time television (at) 7 p.m. (ET). So we’re looking forward to playing prime-time television, ALCS.”

Bregman went further during the postgame press conference.

“We felt a little disrespect not being on prime-time television,” he said, according to Brian T. Smith of the Houston Chronicle. “We’ll see if we get the 7 o’clock slot down the road.”

The 24-year-old finished the regular season as a top AL MVP candidate, slashing a ridiculous .556/.714/1.333. He hit a pair of homers during the Astros’ sweep of Cleveland.

Houston won’t know its ALCS opponent until the Yankees and Red Sox complete their series, which is tied 1-1 ahead of Monday night’s critical Game 3 in the Bronx.

The New Japan Pro Wrestling roster may have had mixed emotions flying home from Long Beach, California’s Fighting Spirit Unleashed on Sunday after a strong card over-delivered in front of an under-sized audience, but it’s an all-too-familiar feeling according to reports on backstage morale in this week’s Wrestling Observer.

Dutch President Harold Meij took the reigns in May 2018, with a view of continuing the exceptional work done over the last few years to transfer some of NJPW’s domestic success into their global reach. Anecdotally, product interest outside of Japan still seems high, but some questionable booking in the G1 Climax in particular kickstarted some concern amongst outsiders that the robust booking and star-making mechanisms may be compromised as a result.

The rumoured backstage upheaval reported first by Dave Meltzer marries up with criticisms company ‘Ace’ Hiroshi Tanahashi recently levied at the organisation. He spoke on the booking of the last Long Beach card, questioning “Was that [The Golden Lovers Vs The Young Bucks] really a New Japan main event?!?” before noting that “I really felt then that if NJPW was going to keep going to America, we needed to stop trying to alter things to try and make them more American. It should be New Japan Pro Wrestling, as is, in the States. We really need to show that ‘Made In Japan’ aspect, I think.”

Odell Beckham Jr. made headlines for his critical comments about the New York Giants‘ fledgling offense prior to Sunday’s game against the Carolina Panthers, but the star wideout said he has “no regrets” about speaking out after the 33-31 loss.

Beckham expressed his frustration with New York’s “safe” offense, his connection with Eli Manning, and his lack of chances to make downfield plays in an interview with ESPN’s Josina Anderson.

“I don’t regret anything,” Beckham said, according to ESPN’s Jordan Raanan. “I don’t regret anything that I said. If it took that for us to come together as a team like we did (Sunday), I can take that every single time.”

Beckham met individually with Manning and head coach Pat Shurmur to address his concerns, and later spoke to the entire team.

“It was very receptive,” he said of the team meeting. “I’m happy I did because there was a part of me that was a little reluctant or didn’t want to because it was a tough position. It was a hard thing to do. It was part of the growth process I’m going through. And if I could do it all again I would do the same thing.”

The pass-catcher did his part Sunday, catching eight passes for 131 yards and one touchdown. He also tossed a score to Saquon Barkley to help kick-start New York’s offense.

With Beckham’s issues seemingly resolved, Shurmur wants the team to move forward.

“Alright, listen, I’m going to answer all the drama questions right now and I’m going to go back to what I said. I addressed it with Odell. I addressed it with our team,” Shurmur said in an animated tone, according to Raanan.

“I publicly declared that I didn’t agree with his comments and I asked anybody that was interested if they wanted clarification (to) go to Odell because he’s a big man. Now, I’m not going to give the public a pound of flesh on this, alright. That would make me small not strong.”