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Daily Dose: 2/22/17

Magic Johnson knows a thing or two about the game

4:30 PMThis week feels like it’s taking forever. All of yesterday, I thought it was Wednesday, and for whatever reason, even on a short week, today feels like a Monday. My head schedule is all sorts of screwed up.

The White House doesn’t get it. A whole lot of people don’t like their administration (which is perfectly their right), and they’re showing up in different places to tell people that loudly and in public. It’s a fine American tradition, but the folks at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. don’t seem to get that. As a result, every time it happens, they accuse the left of planting people and even paying people to create unrest. It makes no sense, but the official statements are getting more bizarre as the days go on.

Yo, Magic Johnson is a real slick dude. Now that he’s taken over the Los Angeles Lakers, everyone’s wondering, how on earth did this happen? He hinted at the situation a couple of weeks back, but now that it’s real, stories are coming out about just what went down. Turns out, Magic did a bit of dirty-macking to get the ball rolling. Jeanie Buss admitted that he hit her up after she broke up with Phil Jackson and they had dinner. Now, he’s the guy in charge. I mean, do what you gotta do, I guess. Oh, and it looks like he hired a general manager.

Everyone knows I watch a ton of The Bachelor. No shame in my game, it’s a great show and that’s all there is to it. But the production is interesting overall, as well. The booze in the house is always aplenty as we well know. But also, when do they eat? We basically never see anyone putting actual food into their mouths, even when they go on dinner dates. As it turns out, that’s basically for production reasons, but they do eat. What’s really interesting is that they’re allowed to pick their own groceries, too. This story explains the whole setup.

Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred is making moves. Since there’s an eternal debate on how to speed up games, the latest idea is to make intentional walks just a signal that thus allows you to send a runner to first without throwing any pitches. It seems like a bit of a no-brainer, anyway. If it were me, I’d also allow guys to not run the bases if they didn’t want to after homers. As for the other change, both the league and the players union have accepted it. So, the days of wild pitches on walks are over. I will miss that, to be honest.

Free Food

Coffee Break: If you know anything about punk and hardcore music, you’re familiar with Bad Brains. One of the original counter-culture groups, their lead singer, H.R., has been an incredibly wild character in the game for decades. Now, he’s battling health issues, so prayers up to him and his family. What a dude.

Snack Time: Gucci Mane’s incredible year is continuing. The man who’s dropped a bunch of pounds and a bunch of music has announced a tour for this summer, which promises to be lit. The bring-outs are going to be bananas.

Dessert: Every once in a while, you just need to watch fuzzy animals play.

Daily Dose: 2/20/17

Bow to your new (Lion) king, Donald Glover

11:00 AMHappy Monday, kiddos! If you missed Highly Questionable Friday, here you go. Also, there were a lot conspiracy theories discussed on The Morning Roast. Lastly, we’re filling in for Russillo & Kanell on ESPN Radio, 1-4 p.m. EST today.

It’s Presidents Day, so let’s talk about ours. The weekend proved a few things about President Donald Trump. First of all, he kicked off his 2020 campaign less than a month into his own administration with a rally in Florida, seemingly because he needs constant adulation. He then made a claim about an incident in Sweden that never happened. The Swedes weren’t happy about it. But perhaps most importantly, he fired a senior appointee after it was found that he had criticized Trump in a private speech. Loyalty over expertise. Good luck finding a replacement.

Sidney Poitier is a national treasure. Today is his 90th birthday, and if you haven’t spent a large chunk of your life with his films, you need to. You know him for quite a few iconic roles: A Raisin In The Sun, Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner and, perhaps, Uptown Saturday Night. But you might not know that his best friend is Harry Belafonte, the singer and activist with whom he shares the same age. They’ve been tight since they were 20 years old and the story of their bond is really quite remarkable.

If you don’t like Donald Glover, that sucks for you. The man is all over Hollywood, and now, he’s going to be a part of an epic Disney remake: The Lion King. He’ll be playing Simba. It’s getting a reboot as a live-action film, which considering the success of The Jungle Book and the upcoming Beauty and the Beast was bound to happen. The Lion King is going to be a little more difficult, considering that there are no actual humans in that story. Nonetheless it’s an excellent pick and we are very much looking forward to the soundtrack.

LeBron James is about way more than basketball. If we’re being honest, his basketball career isn’t exactly coming to a close, but his days as the guy who can carry a single team on his back all the way to an NBA championship might be, which is fine. His legacy is more than secure after bringing a title to Cleveland. So, it’s time to look beyond that. He’s already got a production company that’s been rather successful. So, the next obvious step for the king to take over? Hollywood, duh.

Free Food

Coffee Break: It’s becoming harder and harder to defend Uber. We’ve all heard the stories of drivers sexually assaulting people and the company not being exactly responsive to complaints about it, but this latest essay on what the working environment is inside the actual company is worth your time. It does not paint a pretty picture.

Snack Time: Oddisee is perhaps the most thoughtful and politically conscious rapper in the game right now. This NPR interview with him about his latest album, The Iceberg, is excellent.

Dessert: Y’all are wrong for this, I swear.

Daily Dose: 2/17/16

Do you know anyone in the Congressional Black Caucus?

10:11 AMI’ve been in Miami for the last couple of days because I’ll be hosting Highly Questionable at 4 p.m. with my radio co-host Mina Kimes on ESPN. Thursday, though, I dropped by Bomani Jones’ The Right Time to chop it up.

One thing intrigues me about the White House press corps: Why don’t they simplify things? Policy questions are pointless. Just go basic. If I were in that room, I’d meet the president on his level. Why do you care about the media so much? What do you think the purpose of the press is? Why do you watch television and tweet? When do you plan on ending your comments about the election? It would all be fair at this point, judging from how Thursday went. And, oh, yeah. April Ryan is a hero for dealing with that Congressional Black Caucus reply.

If you’re an undocumented immigrant in this country, right now is a fearful time. No matter how many public officials deny it, raids are certainly being carried out and many of them are rather craven. There are some truly sickening stories circulating about how this crackdown is going. Snatching people up coming from work, picking their kids up from school, or leaving church? All of it just seems so extra. To top it all off, quite a few of these arrests are breaking up families, which is really sad.

You know what the funny thing is about black folks? Our stories are interesting. For more than one reason. No. 1, because most of them are not necessarily well-known in mainstream storytelling lanes. No. 2, because, ahem, we are humans, who deserve to have our stories told like everyone else. So, shocker, when we actually get to tell them as we choose, guess what? People like them. As in, everybody. And, unsurprisingly, the numbers show that it’s true. No one should be shocked.

One thing that working in the sports industry does is humanize you. When you cover the people who play the games that so many people watch on television, you get to see their actual personalities behind those numbers and jerseys. This seems obvious, but every once a while you get a story from an athlete that truly breaks your heart. This tale of the former Chicago Bears’ defensive tackle Tommie Harris and how he lost his wife is the kind of thing that no one should have to deal with.

Free Food

Coffee Break: The Golden State Warriors need to learn to stop doing group photo shoots in anything other than their sports uniforms. The whole squad always ends up looking like models in some stock photo situation, which of course opens the door for supreme roasting. Actually, the jokes are too good. Dubs, please never end this tradition.

Snack Time: Eric Andre is a pretty eccentric guy. His television show is a series of explosions, anatomy jokes and other absurd high jinks, but, he’s now dating Rosario Dawson. No one wants to believe this is real, but it is, folks.

Dessert: There’s nothing like a good love song. Here’s one to help out your weekend.

 

Daily Dose: 2/16/17

What’s life in the U.S. like without immigrants?

9:38 AMNBA All-Star Weekend is about to be underway and to kick things off, the homey Aaron Dodson has a new edition of the What Are Those?! podcast that’s all about the festivities. Plus, Kevin Merida joins them! Check it out.

If you want something to eat in D.C. today, you’ll have to make informed choices. As part of an effort to help recognize the contributions that immigrants make to this nation, many restaurants in the nation’s capital are closing down entirely or shuttering their kitchens. Some other nonfood establishments are giving workers the day off in solidarity as well. I’m not personally sure this correctly represents how many immigrants contribute to society, but what the heck. At least people are talking about it.

If you know Detroit, you know Mr. I, Mike Ilitch. He not only owned both the Detroit Tigers and the Red Wings for a time, he was also the creator of the Little Caesers pizza empire. Turns out he was a good dude, too. He paid Rosa Parks rent for more than 10 years. Ilitch read a newspaper story in 1994 that Parks was assaulted in her home, contacted federal judge Damon Keith and offered to pay it for the rest of her life, which he did until she died in 2005.

Speaking of food, I love Sriracha. I don’t only use it when I eat pho, which is at least twice a week, it’s also good on all sorts of other things. Throw some on your popcorn next time you sit down and watch a movie, or see how it can spice up a bowl of grits. I’m serious. As a brand, the red sauce has gone completely through the roof in recent years, with people going to more lengths than just eating it to rep their love for Sriracha. There’s an entire cottage industry around this condiment. Check out this story of how it came to America.

Twitter is always there for relationship advice if you need it. Wondering how much to spend on a date? Ask the TL. It’s $200, by the way. Need to know if your text game is too savage? Post a pic and let your mentions take over. So, when a video of a boyfriend explaining to an ex how he was unfaithful to her crossed people’s desks, things went haywire. It forced a lot of people to examine their own situations and of course, the girl in the scene was dubbed #HurtBae. Basically, Twitter is high school.

Everyone knows that Vince Carter was a great dunker. But overall, there are parts of his game that aren’t necessarily overlooked, but don’t immediately come to mind. So, if I asked you where he was on the NBA’s all-time scoring list, would you have guessed the Top 25? I certainly wouldn’t have. I definitely wouldn’t have guessed that he was just behind Allen Iverson on the list either. Well, last night, Carter, who plays for the Memphis Grizzlies, passed A.I. for 23rd overall. Good for Vince!

Free Food

Dessert: It’s New York Fashion Week and aside from my homegirl Cardi B slaying in these streets, there are quite a few political messages being sent on runways across the city. Protest is the new black for #NYFW, and everyone’s getting in on the trend.

Snack Time: It’s been a rough few months for Kanye West. He’s now a full-blown Kardashian and his whole world has been up and down. But Pusha T says Ye has new music coming out, but that’s all he can say on the matter.

Dessert: Read this. Thank me later.