Archive for the ‘ Entertainment Blog ’ Category

Tracy McGrady, baseball player

Here’s the Washington Post blog reporting on Tracy McGrady, who has retired from the NBA and now reportedly focused on playing baseball:

Tracy McGrady

Tracy McGrady is serious about this baseball thing — so serious about pitching that he’s enlisted assistance from Roger Clemens.

McGrady, a seven-time NBA all-star who played mostly for the Houston Rockets, is working out with the Sugar Land Skeeters, the team with which Clemens made his brief comeback in the summer of 2012. Like Michael Jordan when he took a hiatus from the Chicago Bulls to try his hand at baseball, McGrady spoke in terms of a “dream.”

“Just having a tryout for a minor league team is more fulfilling than anything I can imagine as far as baseball,” McGrady told ESPN.com Tuesday. “I’m just going to train as hard as I can and pursue my dream. Where this takes me, I don’t know. I’m doing this for the love of the game. I’ve made money. The Atlantic League doesn’t have salaries like the major leagues. So this is a kid who’s trying to fulfill his dream. This isn’t a gimmick. I’ve played baseball. I know the game of baseball. And I’m going after what I’ve always wanted to do.”

Kendrick Lamar is one of the top rappers around these days. Imagine Dragons make some great music. Throw Kendrick and Imagine Dragons together for a live performance at the 2014 Grammy awards and the result was something awesome. Enjoy:

Here’s ESPN.com on some historical Michael Jordan letters that can be yours, if the price is right:

A storage locker bought by a man in North Carolina has never been featured on a popular television reality show, but its contents, including some unique documents related to Michael Jordan’s college career, are going up for auction.

New Jersey-based auction house Goldin Auctions acquired two 1980 North Carolina Tar Heels recruiting letters — one from assistant Bill Guthridge, and another from coach Dean Smith — from a consigner.

The documents, which had changed hands twice, Goldin Auctions founder Ken Goldin says, were some of the personal items Jordan gave to “Michael Jordan’s 23,” a restaurant that opened in Chapel Hill, N.C., in 1999.

Goldin says that when the restaurant closed in November 2003, some of the items on the wall went into a storage locker, which became property of a lucky man after a storage bill wasn’t paid.

Here’s Rihanna in the Brooklyn Barclays Center checking out the Nets as they host the Atlanta Hawks on a cold winter NYC night.

Here’s Deadline.com reporting on LeBron James and Kevin Hart teaming up to try to make you laugh:

lebron james

Kevin Hart is signing on to star with LeBron James in Ballers, the basketball comedy for Universal Pictures and Imagine Entertainment. Brian Grazer and Michael Rosenberg are producing.

Hart will first co-write the comedy along with his scripting teammates Joey Wells, Chris Spencer and Harry Ratchford. He’ll then star as a man who lives in the shadow of his NBA superstar brother (James), but gets a chance to prove himself when he and some pals attend a weekend fantasy basketball camp in Miami. Hart is certainly dominant in the stand-up arena, but posting up against this screen sibling could be dangerous. Hart is under 5’3″ while James is a towering 6’8.” That kind of sibling size differential hasn’t been seen since Danny DeVito and Arnold Schwarzenegger starred in another Universal comedy, Twins. They’ll sign a director when Hart and his cohorts turn in the script. The plan is to start production next summer when James has time off.

NBA TV has added former NBA executive and head coach Stu Jackson as a contributor on league-related topics including rules clarifications, discipline, and general league operations. His first in-studio appearance is scheduled for NBA GameTime on Friday, Dec. 13.

In addition to serving as a resource for NBA TV, Jackson will also contribute across NBA Digital’s portfolio, including answering questions from fans via Twitter – @StuJackson32 – and providing insights on NBA.com. His first Twitter chat will be Friday, Dec. 6.

Starting Tuesday, Dec. 10, Jackson will contribute monthly on the Hang Time podcast, co-hosting a segment alongside TNT analyst Reggie Miller and NBA.com’s Sekou Smith.

Jackson spent nearly 13 years as the NBA’s executive vice president of basketball operations, in charge of all oncourt and international basketball operations, including game rules, conduct, discipline and analytics. He served as chairman of the NBA Competition Committee, which recommends rules changes to the NBA Board of Governors, and on FIBA’s Competition Commission and USA Basketball’s Board of Directors.

A veteran of four decades in professional and collegiate basketball, the New York Knicks made Jackson the second youngest head coach in league history in 1989. In New York, he totaled a 52-45 record, highlighted by the Knicks’ upset victory over the Boston Celtics in the first round of the 1990 playoffs.

In 1994, Jackson was the first person hired by the Vancouver Grizzlies, serving as general manager and helping to shape all facets of the organization, eventually becoming the team’s head coach during the 1996-97 season. Before joining the Grizzlies, he coached at the University of Wisconsin, leading the Badgers to their first NCAA Tournament berth and victory in more than 45 years.  He also was an assistant coach at Providence College, Washington State and the University of Oregon.

Jackson previously worked in the league office as director of basketball operations during the 1990-91 and 1991-92 seasons.

Here’s the South Florida Sun Sentinel reporting:

lebron james

Miami Heat forward LeBron James caused a stir when he teamed up with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh three years ago.

Now, James is contemplating linking up with another superstar from a different sport. On Monday, James confirmed he has interest in teaming up with soccer icon David Beckham in bringing a Major League Soccer team to Miami.

“There’s some interest on both sides,” James said. “David has become a good friend of mine over the last few years. I think it would be great for this city to have a football club for sure. There’s interest on both sides but it’s preliminary talks.”

Magic Johnson is leaving ESPN, and will no longer be part of their NBA coverage team. Although a legend as a player and personality, Magic was pretty basic in his delivery of NBA analysis, and didn’t really seem to improve much over the years. Lots of casual fans enjoyed him, while many more dedicated fans don’t mind seeing him move on. Here’s a statement from the network:

John Wildhack, ESPN Executive Vice President, Production:

Earvin “Magic” Johnson informed us today that he’ll no longer be part of our NBA coverage due to his other commitments. We appreciate Magic’s contributions and wish him well in his future endeavors. We are in the process of determining our NBA commentator roles for the upcoming season.

Earvin “Magic” Johnson statement:

I love ESPN. Unfortunately, due to the nature of my schedule and other commitments, I don’t feel confident that I can continue to devote the time needed to thrive in my role. I will always feel a strong connection to the ESPN family and I enjoyed working with them very much. I’d like to thank John Skipper, John Wildhack, Mark Gross, Kim Belton, Amina Hussein, Mark Summer, Adam Hertzog, Bob Rauscher, Stuart Scott, Mike Wilbon, Jon Barry, Jalen Rose, Bill Simmons, Chris Broussard and the many others at ESPN for the wonderful opportunity to talk about the game I love. They are the best in the business.

george karl

For seven NBA seasons George Karl told TV viewers — in his low-key style — about the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat while coaching the Nuggets.

Karl, who recently signed a multiyear agreement with ESPN, will utilize that style as a national NBA analyst, working in a variety of studio shows, including “SportsCenter,” “NBA Coast to Coast” and “NBA Tonight.”

Part of Karl’s job will be assessing the organization that fired him at the end of last season, after he led Denver to a 57-25 record and earned NBA coach-of-the-year honors.

“ESPN contacted me in August,” Karl said from his Denver home. “Obviously, I was intrigued. I’ve spent my life in basketball. I auditioned in Bristol (ESPN’s Connecticut headquarters), and we signed a deal.”

Reported by Dusty Saunders, special to the Denver Post

Brook and Robin Lopez shopping TV script

The recent offseasons haven’t been so easy for Brook Lopez. There was the bout with mono three years ago, and then the three foot surgeries that stalled his career.

But all this time away from the court has provided Lopez an opportunity to advance his eclectic interests, specifically a script for an animated adventure/comedy that he and his twin brother — Robin Lopez, a center for the Trail Blazers — have been shopping to television networks.

“We have a pilot all written out,” says Lopez.

Brooklyn’s All-Star center is quite serious about this endeavor, as well his future plans to create books, comics and video games. He and Robin have visited the studios at Disney and Fox, even sitting at a taping of “The Simpsons.” Like any Hollywood writer, he is keeping the details of the script a secret, providing only the theme.

“This one is Robin’s brainchild,” Lopez says.

Reported by Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News

Dwyane Wade tells Jay Leno about celebrity relationships

Dwyane Wade’s appearance on NBC’s Tonight Show with Jay Leno early Friday morning offered more insight into his personal life than his professional one.

“I’m going to tell you something personal,” Wade said when Leno asked him about his relationship with actress Gabrielle Union.

“Celebrity relationships is very hard. This was a big year for us in our relationship from the standpoint of she was shooting her show Being Mary Jane. … I was dealing with my injuries, trying to win a championship. We kind of took a step back. We supported each other, but we took a step back for a little while. At the end of the day, we came back together and said, ‘Listen, we want to continue this. We want to try to continue to get better each day.’ She’s been with me and I’ve been with her all summer long. We’re going strong now.”

Reported by Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald

LeBron James is now a married man

LeBron James
LeBron James is now a married man
Has rings

To quote San Diego legend and respected newsman Ron Burgundy, when Jay-Z and Beyonce fly in to sing at your wedding, you’re “kind of a big deal.”

A performance by the two pop icons on Saturday night highlighted the wedding celebration of Miami Heat star LeBron James and longtime girlfriend Savannah Brinson, who shared vows in San Diego with family and friends.

And, so, Miami’s king now has a queen.

About 200 people attended the ceremony held at San Diego-area resort Grand Del Mar Hotel. The hotel is considered one of the best in the world. Per the property’s website, the Grand Del Mar Hotel is “serenely nestled amidst Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve” and “seamlessly combines the old-world charm of a Mediterranean estate with the modern luxury of an elegant resort.”

The constant hovering of local TV helicopters apparently detracted little from the ceremony’s ambiance, which was hidden from view under large event tents. Guests were ushered into the hotel under umbrellas.

Reported by Joseph Goodman of the Miami Herald

Many members of the Heat organization were there, including Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, managing general partner Micky Arison and coach Erik Spoelstra. Wade and girlfriend Gabrielle Union posted images of themselves dressed for the occasion on social media, as did Bosh and his wife Adrienne. Some of James’ longtime friends were also in attendance, including his manager Maverick Carter.

“What a wonderful evening!!” Adrienne Bosh wrote on Twitter. “Congratulations to Mr. & Mrs. James…Thanks for sharing Ur night & love with us”

The ceremony was the obvious highlight of a three-day wedding weekend for the couple, who were high school sweethearts and are the parents of two sons. They were engaged just after midnight on Jan. 1, 2012, when James dropped to a knee and surprised his longtime girlfriend by finally popping the question as many of their close friends were gathered around.

Reported by the Associated Press

Lamar Odom’s crack cocaine addiction had reached such dangerous levels … even his dealer thought the NBA star had gone over the edge, and cut off his supply last week, TMZ has learned.

Sources connected to the dealer tell us, the crack slinger had delivered the drug to Lamar all summer, but last week, Lamar was insatiable … calling incessantly and demanding more and more crack. His go-to dealer apparently got scared enough to cut Lamar off.

Reported by TMZ.com

Jay-Z selling his Brooklyn Nets ownership stake to Jason Kidd
Jay-Z selling his Brooklyn Nets ownership stake to Jason Kidd

Jay Z is selling his minority ownership in the Brookyn Nets to coach Jason Kidd, sources exclusively tell Page Six.

We’re told Kidd will take over Jay’s .067 percent (1/15th of a percent) stake in the team for about $500,000.

The move comes as Jay was forced to sell his Nets shares over a conflict of interest after he started a sports agency, Roc Nation, signing clients including Yankee Robinson Cano and Oklahoma City star Kevin Durant.

A source told us, “Other owners want to give Jason a part ownership of the team, and urged Jay to sell his shares to him.”

Reported by Page Six of the New York Post

lebron james

Having produced two NBA championships with the Miami Heat, the next step for LeBron James will be producing scripted television comedy.

The Starz cable network announced Tuesday that the Heat forward along with Tom Werner, Mike O’Malley, Maverick Carter and Paul Wachter will develop a half-hour scripted comedy series, Survivor’s Remorse, for Starz, with James serving as an executive producer.

Mike O’Malley will serve as executive producer and writer. He previously worked as consulting producer and writer on Shameless and as an actor in Glee, Justified and My Name is Earl.

To James, who is not scheduled to appear in the series, it expands a presence that already has moved beyond the confines of the court.

Reported by Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Here’s an InsideHoops.com photo of Michael Rapaport at last week’s Elite 24 high school all-star game in Brooklyn, New York. The man loves basketball:

lebron james

En-route to Friday’s Justin Timberlake and Jay Z concert, Miami Heat superstar LeBron James was given a police escort to navigate the bumper-to-bumper traffic into Sun Life Stadium.

A grateful James posted the clip of the good deed on his Instagram account with the caption: “They treat us so well! Needed it cause traffic was nuts!!” James has a little under 3.5 million Instagram followers.

“Light police escort on the wrong side of the street,” James said. “Headed to the big homie concert, JT. Holla.”

On Monday, Miami-Dade police said the officer who gave James and his fiancée the wrong-way escort into the stadium “violated departmental policies.”

Reported by the Miami Herald staff

Former ‘N Sync singer Lance Bass and New York Knicks forward Amar’e Stoudemire highlight the list of judges for next month’s Miss America pageant in Atlantic City.

Joining them will be Grammy Award-winning violinist Joshua Bell; comedian and performer Mario Cantone; and Barbara Corcoran, an investor from ABC’s entrepreneurial competition show ”Shark Tank.” Also on the panel are Carla Hall, co-host of ABC’s food-and-talk show ”The Chew,” and Deidre Downs Gunn, an obstetrician and gynecologist who was the last Miss America to be crowned in Atlantic City.

Reported by the Associated Press

Michelle Obama will release a hip-hop-inspired album. Although she probably won’t rhyme or sing on any songs, it will be the first time that a first lady has delved into hip-hop for a greater cause.

The album will promote Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign in an effort to fight childhood obesity. Obama enlisted DMC, Doug E. Fresh, Ashanti, Monifah and other artists to create songs on the 19-track album.

The project, sponsored by Partnership For A Healthier America and Hip Hop Public Health, will seek to raise awareness through entertainment.

Track no. 11: “Pass the Rock” f/ Iman Shumpert and Artie Green

Reported by Amir Shaw of RollingStone.com

The 19-track album with song titles like “U R What You Eat” and “Veggie Luv” is being released by the Partnership for a Healthier America, an independent group found in conjunction with Let’s Move.

Ten music videos released with the album are set to be distributed to schools in New York City before being circulated to other major cities.

Reported by Hadas Gold of Politico.com

LeBron James reports for jury duty

lebron james

LeBron James plays the part of superhero on a basketball court, seemingly from October through June.

But he is a regular human being in the offseason, as those in an Akron, Ohio, courthouse were reminded Thursday morning when the Heat star forward reported for jury duty — just like everybody else has to.

“Jury duty time. Time to serve my civic duty” James tweeted.

Reported by the Miami Herald

James drew a buzz at the county courthouse in downtown Akron but was not seated on a jury for trial and left the building at 10:30 a.m., according to the Akron Beacon Journal.

He has been spending time in his hometown and working out for the past several weeks since returning from a promotional tour to the Philippines and China. This weekend James is hosting several charity events in the city.

Reported by Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com

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