1. NBA Awards Show-The NBA had their first-ever regular-season awards show on Monday, and although it was a little cheesy (Hey, all awards shows are cheesy in their first year) it was pretty decent. Rapper Drake was the host and he earned that spot since he’s a true fan and is connected to the Toronto Raptors. TNT hosted it and had their studio hosts there as well. Kudos to the NBA.
  2. Sports Awards shows-So that almost completes the circle of awards shows for professional sports. The NHL has the longest tenure for their awards show, then the NFL added the NFL Honors, and now the NBA has their own show. The only sport left? MLB, but they have a special hour-long show that honors each award on MLB Network.
  3. NBA MVP-We’ve certainly been talking and speculating about this award all season and the NBA used their awards show to finally announce the winner. To no surprise, it’s OKC Thunder’s Russell Westbrook who became the first NBA player since Oscar Robinson to average Triple-Double an entire Plus, he led his team to the playoffs. This young man certainly deserved this award.
  4. Clippers trade Paul to the Rockets-With NBA Free Agency beginning on Saturday, the Houston Rockets made a move that shows they want to contend in the Western Conference when they acquired PG Chris Paul from the LA Clippers for 7 players and a 2018 1st round draft pick. I can see this trade benefiting both teams.
  5. How will it benefit the Rockets? No pun intended, but it doesn’t take a rocket-scientist to figure out that Paul makes the Rockets better by adding another backcourt presence and scorer. Paul did all he could with the Clippers and now he’s on a contender who has their own MVP candidate in James Harden. Question is, who will play the point? My guess is that it will be Paul who’s not the scorer that Harden his.
  6. How will it benefit the Clippers? Well, from a financial standpoint, they won’t have to sign Paul to a Max Free Agent deal worth $205 million. They added Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams, Sam Dekker, Montrezl Harrell, Darrun Hilliard, DeAndre Liggins, Kyle Wiltjer, a protected first-round pick next year and cash considerations. That just remade this team. Beverly is the only starter and Williams won the Sixth Man award this season, so it wasn’t a total salary dump for the Clippers.
  7. Are the Clippers done? I wouldn’t put it that way, but I do believe that their window of opportunity to win a title has closed with Paul now gone. I honestly believe that F Blake Griffin will be gone as well and the Clippers are trying to deal F Deandre Jordan. That pretty much speaks for itself about the state of this team. They’re no longer an elite team in the West and if they’re not too careful, HC Doc Rivers may be out the door too.
  8. Who’s now the Pittsburgh Pirates of the NBA? After that trade, it’s the Clippers in a landslide over OKC. Donald Sterling or not, the Clippers have just proven once again that they’re not about re-signing their stars to huge contracts. I gave the Thunder that title after they traded Harden and let Durant walk, but the Clippers have truly earned that title after trading Paul.
  9. Paul George-As Free Agency gets closer, so do the rumors about this All-Star player everyone’s curious about where the former Indiana Pacer will end up. Some feel like it’s with the LA Lakers, while others feel that it will be with either the Rockets, Boston Celtics or the Cleveland Cavaliers. I hope he ends up with the Cavs, as they tried to do a 3-team trade with the Pacers and Denver Nuggets, but it fell through.
  10. Knicks and Phil Jackson part ways-I’m not surprised because I felt that Jackson was out of his league as the NY Knicks Team President. As good as he was as an HC, Jackson made the Knicks worse with his lack of experience and poor decisions. And as a result, the Knicks are a joke. Under Jackson, the Knicks were 80-166 under Jackson. Horrible.
  11. Carmelo Anthony-Well, the reason why Jackson was fired was that he wanted the Knicks to buy out Anthony, whom the team still owes $54 million to. The Knicks said no, and Jackson is out the door. I think the Knicks are foolish if they don’t buyout Anthony. The man needs to be a contender, and he won’t get a ring in the Big Apple. They need to set Carmelo free.
  12. If Anthony gets bought-out, where could he end up? I will say the Cavs, who tried to trade for him in the regular season. Anthony has reportedly told the Knicks that he would only accept a buyout if he ended up with the Cavs. That puts the ball (again, no pun intended) in the Knicks court, who should consider cutting their losses with Carmelo.
  13. Gordon Heyward-With all the talk about Paul George, Utah Jazz’s all-star player Gordon Heyward will also be a wanted free agent after telling the Jazz that he wants to opt out of his contract for greener pastures and he may get that literally if he ends up with the Celtics, who desperately want him.
  14. Pittsburgh Pirates-Well, they’re still under .500, but the Pirates still have a shot at the NL Central Division (as does the other NL Central teams) provided they can get out of their own way and start a winning streak. Their main issue is still inconsistent starting and relief pitching. And don’t even think they will consider adding a pitcher. After all, they’re still the Pirates.
  15. Josh Bell-Well, this young man is truly living up to his hype as he tied the rookie record for most home runs before the All-Star Game as he hit his 15th The HR tied a 70-year old record set by HOF Ralph Kiner in 1947. Impressive.
  16. Aaron Judge-The NY Yankees young slugger is now hitting .333 with 27 home runs and 62 RBI, and it’s only the first-half of the season. And the Yankees need every one of those dingers as they continue to fight the Boston Red Sox for 1st place in the AL East.
  17. NL Umpire saves a life-Kudos to Umpire John Tumpane who kept a young woman from jumping off the Roberto Clemente Bride near PNC Park Wednesday. Trumpane was on his way to the Pirates/ Tampa Devil Rays when he saw the young woman about to step off the bridge. He stayed with her until the authorities arrived. It goes to show that there are still some decent human beings out there.
  18. Braves Designate 44-year old Colon for assignment-I root for players like Bartolo Colon because he’s the same age as me. Well, the pitcher has defied age in recent years by continuing to pitch pretty well, but apparently, it may have come to an end as he was released by the Atlanta Braves after going 2-8 with an 8.44 ERA.
  19. Brett Farve interested in Coaching, GM job-But the question is, can he do either? What experience does he have? None, in my opinion. I’m sure he has lots of knowledge, but I thin Farve needs to start at the bottom of the coaching totem pole as an intern.
  20. McEnroe, Serena clash over views-Apparently remarks by tennis John McEnroe riled Serena Williams up when he said that Williams would be ranked 700th in the men’s circuit. Serena responded by asking McEnroe to ‘keep her name out of topics that are not factually based.’ Wow. Could there be another Battle of the Sexes match like it was titled in 1973? It would be interesting.

Please e-mail Ray at ray@urbanmediatoday.com

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