Daily Dose: 7/19/17
Russell Westbrook rocks ‘Fight Racism’ shirt
3:03 PMI’ve got a new podcast coming out later Wednesday, and it’ll be a review of my time in Minneapolis. Unfortunately, that town is back in the news because of another police shooting, this time involving a yogi who was shot and killed.
found this the other day pic.twitter.com/rYi6vVtMRT
— fee nom (@PHNM) July 19, 2017
Russell Westbrook has been making fashion statements for a long time. But Tuesday night at Sports Illustrated‘s Fashionable 50 event, the Oklahoma City Thunder guard presented a larger message than just “look at me.” He wore a T-shirt that says “Fight Racism” on the red carpet, and he’s the cover boy. It’ll be interesting to see how this flies in the state he plays in, as opposed to the city he’s from and lives in, Los Angeles. To be clear, Westbrook also likes the way it looks. Obviously.
The president of the United States has a sidepiece. He happens to be the president of Russia. And like in many covert relationships, because he’s not being honest about it, the rest of his world is becoming more difficult to maintain. As it turns out, there were actually a whole lot of people in that Trump Tower meeting that his son had with a Russian lawyer, and the number appears to be going up. Also, the president apparently decided to have a separate meeting with Vladimir Putin and his interpreter at the G-20 summit.
If you don’t know, O.J. Simpson has a parole hearing coming up Thursday. If you’ve forgotten, he’s in prison for a crime completely unrelated to the murders of his ex-wife and her friend. He’s been locked up for pulling a gun on two guys over some memorabilia of his in Las Vegas. Simpson has been incarcerated for nine years, and there are people who believe that he’s likely to get out. I’m infinitely fascinated with what will be the third chapter of Simpson’s life and what he’ll be like if he is freed.
Magic Johnson is extremely high on Lonzo Ball. Ever since the rookie was named MVP of the Las Vegas Summer League and his team won the title, Johnson’s been proved right to an extent. Mind you, Magic was hyping homeboy immediately after the draft, so this is nothing new. And we thought LaVar Ball had a lot to say. Now, the Lakers’ president of basketball operations says those triple-doubles will be coming quite frequently in the regular season too. There’s no question that they’ll be fun to watch next season.
Coffee Break: It never ceases to amaze me how many people the Kardashians are connected to in one way or another. It’s part of the reason that I call them America’s greatest television family. Turns out, the doctor who delivered Beyoncé’s babies is also the Kardashian deliverer, and even delivered Kim herself.
Snack Time: Rae Sremmurd are in the prime of their careers. Hit songs, great videos, sold-out shows. Now they’ve got a comic book featuring their likeness coming to fruition. It’s supposed to hit shelves in October.
Dessert: For whatever reason, I love the A$AP Rocky/Lana Del Rey relationship. They’ve got two new songs.
Daily Dose: 7/17/17
R. Kelly’s latest disgusting scheme is exposed
1:38 PMAll right, all, I’ll be on The Ryen Russillo Show on Monday from 1-4 p.m. EST, which is also on ESPNews if you want to see me while I talk. But, if you want to hear The Morning Roast from Sunday, without pictures, there’s that too.
— Kwani Lunis (@KwaniALunis) July 17, 2017
R. Kelly is a monster. At this point, that’s a pretty irrefutable fact. Long after the urination incident that instantly sunk the R&B singer’s reputation in many circles, he’s still apparently making music, and people are still falling for his grotesque bit. In his latest piece, Jim DeRogatis, a music journalist who’s made a life’s work out of exposing the artist’s acts, explains how Kelly is now basically running a cult for young women. It should suprise no one, but that doesn’t mean it’s not newsworthy. The scariest part is that none of it is really illegal.
If you don’t watch gaming on television, I wouldn’t blame you. But Sunday night I found myself bored while in a hotel room, so I decided to watch the Street Fighter V tournament at EVO 2017. There was a guy who went by the name of Punk, a relatively soft-spoken kid from Philly who was banging people out. But the best part was that they kept showing his mom, who was AMPED in the crowd. If this is how all gamers’ parents celebrate, I’d watch it every single night. Her pride in her son made the whole thing worth it.
50 years ago, Detroit burned. Now, depending on who you ask, the descriptors of the event are different. Some will call them riots. Others will call it a rebellion. And some will call it an uprising because of everything that was surrounding the economic condition of the city at the time. Now, a movie simply titled Detroit about the 1967 incident is coming out, lending new interest to the history of the city. A friend of mine saw it and said it made him physically uncomfortable. Here’s a look back on that time in the Motor City.
The BIG3 is trying, but things are hard. When games aren’t on live, and teams are making trades of players no one’s ever heard of, it can be tough to gain traction. As a gimmick it’s been fun, and everyone’s got an uncle who’s really into it, but right now it’s a sideshow. A good one, though. But when Allen Iverson comes back to Philadelphia and can’t play because of undisclosed reasons, that’s a problem. The 76ers legend was in the building but did not actually participate over the weekend. Bummer. I hope Bubba Chuck is OK.
Coffee Break: Bringing a dog on a plane is such a scary venture. It’s why people go well out of their way to make sure that they can sit right next to them if they are forced to bring their animals to travel. But don’t tell that to ScHoolboy Q, the TDE rapper, who had his canine shipped to the wrong city by an airline. Nightmare scenario.
Snack Time: Guess what? Racism and consistent discrimination actually have real effects on your life beyond just living and dying. A new study reveals that psychological trauma and poverty may lead more black folks to dementia.
Dessert: I’ve been banging this new French Montana album all weekend. Don’t at me.
The Morning Roast: 7/17/17
Let’s talk about the Knicks, X Games, ‘The Bachelorette’ and contracts
11:48 AMMina Kimes was back from assignment, Clinton Yates was back from the Midwest and Domonique Foxworth decided to go to McDonald’s for breakfast instead of the usual bagels and coffee. It was a great show.
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Mina managed to make it to the ESPY Awards, which apparently has a standby list that I didn’t know about until she brought it up. Alas, the person whose seat she took wasn’t a very memorable person, but being in the building is half the fun.
During the show, Roger Federer managed to win yet another Wimbledon men’s singles title, which means he broke a record. Clinton was way more interested in talking about the line judges and those cool outfits they get to wear. Speaking of outfits, the All-England Club ain’t playing when it comes to its all-white policy. Tournament officials straight-up made a team change their underwear, because God forbid anyone show any color whatsoever.
Of course, Carmelo Anthony is still looking to get out of New York, and this time the Houston Rockets look to be the landing spot. This somehow led to a conversation about the Knicks and Melo staying together to appease Kristaps Porzingis, whom you might recall bounced on the team before exit interviews at the end of last season. That led to a show-long thread of broken-home discussions, which, although painful for Clinton, at least provided good show content.
Since it’s summer, the NBA summer league is around, and more popular than ever. The gang discussed how the Ball family is handling the entire situation. More importantly, Clinton and Domonique unveiled their theory of how Lonzo is handling his shoe contract situation, which is very forward-thinking.
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Things got off to a hot start with Showtime’s Brian Custer, who discussed the latest in the Floyd Mayweather/Conor McGregor boxing match, which has gotten ugly on the news conference front. He’s been at all of them, but the most fun part of the interview came when quite a few listeners thought Custer dropped an f-bomb on the air (he actually said the word “buck.”)
No one was more excited than Domonique and Mina to get back to football talk, sparked by the fact that Richard Sherman says players need to strike if they expect to make more money. With both of them being union experts, they broke down exactly why labor strife is not going to work out in the players’ favor when it comes to the NFL.
Clinton was back from Minnesota, where he was attending the X Games, so that’s where Top 5 went. If you’ve never been to one, you know that all sorts of people attend this event, so he looked back at who he ran into while he was at US Bank Stadium.
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As of this posting, Kirk Cousins still has not signed a contract with Washington’s NFL franchise. Which means that if he plays another season without reaching a long-term deal, the team will have to fork over huge cash if it’s looking to franchise-tag him a third time. Clearly, that situation is ridiculous, which gave Clinton, a fan of the team, an opportunity to literally yell and scream about it.
The Bachelorette is down to hometown visits, but first, Rachel had to cut a couple of people. Dean got the short end of the stick on the date front, but Bryan is out here copping Breitling watches with Rachel. Most importantly, Christian Yates is back from vacation in Uruguay and China, much to Domonique’s delight.
Finally, we unveiled a new bit called House on Fire, which Domonique created as a poll question. Basically, it’s the opposite of “1 Gotta Go,” and you have to pick one thing you’d save in a situation if your proverbial house were on fire. The best part of the bit came when one caller decided to blow up the whole construct of the game with a rather brilliant observation.
Daily Dose: 7/14/17
Beyonce releases photograph of Sir and Rumi
1:22 PMAll right, kiddos. It’s been quite the week here in Minneapolis. The X Games got underway Thursday night, but Friday is the first full day and I’ll be taking over The Undefeated Instagram page for the afternoon. This should be ridiculous.
Someone in our newsroom is actively hating on Beyoncé. “Does her photographer always have to be someone out of Alice in Wonderland? Sorry. Not supposed to troll the Queen. Forget I said that,” were the words of one writer who will go unnamed. Some of these jokes and memes are just plain hilarious though. Look at that photo. These children are going to grow up to be the most widely watched children on earth since Princess Diana’s boys were small. We can’t wait. Sir and Rumi are their names, in case you forgot. Also, watch this.
a hater: "Beyoncé posted a picture of her babies? Who cares?!"
— Luigi (@LuigiM227) July 14, 2017
We officially have a start date for Bachelor In Paradise. Let’s be clear: This season is already wrought with controversy, and I do not feel good about this component at all. That being said, it’s important to note that this show is the best in the franchise, and it’s not even particularly close. But for us die-hard BIP fans, we’re going to have our ethics tested because after the consent dispute scenario, a major premise of the show as basically promoting rape culture is being questioned. That said, set your calendars and clocks for Aug. 14, kiddos.
If you were on your way to a job interview, would you stop to save someone’s life? What if you were living in a halfway house and had less than $5 to your name? That’s what Aaron Tucker, an ex-prisoner in Connecticut, did the other day when he was up first thing in the morning to interview as a busboy at a local barbecue spot. You know what, most of you out there would have just kept it moving and maybe called the cops. He missed the interview, but the community has reached out to help and job offers are coming in. GOOD.
Speaking of jobs, the Oakland/Las Vegas Raiders might be hiring. I say “might be” because with this new stadium they have to build in the desert, it’s obviously going to take bodies to do it. But in what I can only call a stroke of cynic genius, someone posted a hoax “pre-recruitment meetings” sign-up publicly that drew hundreds of people to an otherwise routine Las Vegas Stadium Authority meeting. In short, bringing the very people who need these gigs to the feet of those who will eventually decide who gives them. Mean, but brilliant.
Coffee Break: This Conor McGregor/Floyd Mayweather promo tour has finally gotten good, now that they’ve decided to step up their disses toward each other. But now McGregor has brought 50 Cent into the situation, which is probably not a very smart move whatsoever. Curtis Jackson replied to him — on late night TV, no less.
Snack Time: We’ve all been waiting around for Vic Mensa’s new album, and we finally got something to rock with. His new song called “Wings” features Pharrell and Saul Williams. I love this song.
Dessert: I can’t think of anything better to send us into a weekend than two fighting pancake shops.
Chargers player chronicles housing discrimination
in a blog post, he discusses his trouble in relocating from San Diego
7:20 PMWhen it comes to housing discrimination, Los Angeles is no different from any other big city in America. There has been redlining, segregation, plus other official and unofficial ways to prevent black folks from living near white people. If you want to jump in headfirst on that, feel free. Here’s a map, if you like visuals. Here’s a story, if you prefer words. And here’s a recent breakdown of a study.
Or, if you’re like me, you can just believe folks when they tell you it’s true. Such is the case for Brandon Mebane, who plays nose tackle for the Los Angeles Chargers. Not only that, he’s from Crenshaw in L.A., so when the franchise decided to relocate from San Diego, it meant a homecoming for him and his family. One problem: Brandon is black, which means that, even as an NFL player with a Super Bowl ring, people don’t want you in their neighborhood.
He most recently signed a three-year deal worth $13.5M, and in a recent blog post he detailed how much of a heartbreaker it was for him to have so much trouble finding a place to live in the city where he grew up. He lays out in perfect detail exactly how the color of your skin will keep you from having a roof over your head.
“Although, the house hunting part was fun, it became difficult once we actually started putting in our rental applications. Some owners in the suburbs we were visiting did not want us living in their house,” Mebane wrote in a post titled Homecoming. “Though we exceeded the standard tenant requirements, put together a competitive application with a Tier 1 credit score, references, a cover letter, and advanced payment, we were denied. This was not the first time we experienced this. We were also met with the same unwelcoming response trying to find a home in the suburbs of San Diego.”
Now, what’s most fascinating about this is that Mebane sprinkles his post with pictures from his personal life. A photo of himself, his wife and his daughter. This is not a dude coming in with a house half full of an entourage and a trailer full of all-terrain vehicles for his squad to go careening around on during their free time. This guy’s looking to stay home and chill.
Mind you, Mebane is 6 feet tall and over 300 pounds. Part of me feels like if he’s got to fight that hard to live in a neighborhood where he might not be safe in his own house, that’s a separate story.
Alas, they weren’t alone. His teammates had issues too.
“A teammate in the same situation offered to pay A YEAR upfront and was denied,” Mebane wrote. “One landlord even changed the requirements on another teammate after his family submitted their application so that they would no longer be eligible. It’s disheartening to have to go through this in 2017.”
Something tells me that Philip Rivers isn’t having this problem in his relocation. Might be time to buy, Brandon.
All Day Podcast: 7/14/17
Singing praises of Trap Karaoke
5:12 PMClinton Yates catches up with Jason Mowatt, founder of Trap Karaoke, the event where you’ve seen NBA stars such as LeBron James and Stephen Curry sing their hearts out. It’s going on tour with 2 Chainz later this summer. Clinton sits down with Rob Veggies, creator of Nashville, Tennessee’s Trap Garden, an urban farming initiative created to help alleviate the lack of fresh fruits and vegetables and educate people on the issue of food deserts. Lastly, Clinton gives his thoughts on Venus Williams making yet another Wimbledon final.
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Daily Dose: 7/13/17
Venus Williams will be playing in the Wimbledon final
1:08 PMI was on the radio again Wednesday, filling in for Bomani Jones. This time I did it live from U.S. Bank Stadium, where the X Games begin Thursday in Minneapolis. You can listen here: Hour 1, Hour 2, Hour 3. It was a fun one.
Venus Williams doesn’t care if you’re English. Wimbledon is her home court. Jo Konta stepped to the grass with the support of a nation behind her (she’s naturalized, but whatever) and gave Williams her best shot. It wasn’t enough, although it was quite the match. Konta’s power game forced Williams to switch things up a little bit, but now the five-time champ will face Garbine Muguruza in the final. I wish Serena Williams were there, if only just to watch. But that kind of stress would not be good for the baby.
More than 15 years ago, I nearly died in a car crash. I was alone, but for weeks, months and even years afterward, I always wondered why I was spared, if you want to look at things from a more cosmic level. It doesn’t bother me anymore, but then again, it was just me. I can’t imagine what that would feel like if, as one man believed, other people had died in the crash. But for the people who survived the apartment fire that killed more than 80 people in London, the guilt exists in a very different fashion.
Hasbro, get your act together. Over a year ago, when Star Wars: The Force Awakens came out, the company somehow managed to create a board game that did not feature Rey, the protagonist of the film. How does this happen? Let me tell you. Certain dudes think that dudes only like things with dudes. So, if there isn’t an active reason to include a girl or woman, they have problems understanding why they should anyway. Even if she’s in the lead role. Now, even after promising to change up, they’re reneging, saying there isn’t enough interest. Wow.
For all you doubting Lonzo Ball, that can be put to rest. Homeboy put up major numbers last night in summer league, showing the league what he’s capable of if he gets hot. But more importantly, he did not wear the Big Baller Brand shoes. What? How could that be? The answer was pretty simple: He can do what he wants. Which, if you think about it, makes a whole lot more sense than anything else. If your shoe is your own, you don’t HAVE to wear it every night, because no one is forcing you to. Sounds weird, you know why? You’ve been programmed.
Coffee Break: It breaks my heart to hear that SoundCloud is basically on its last legs. It was such a clean platform and available to such a wide variety of artists that it was the perfect site for curious but not necessarily supercommitted music fans. But it had devotees too. Now, it looks like it’s all going away, and it won’t be pretty.
Snack Time: My boss wants you to know that he met Rachel Lindsay, the Bachelorette, at The ESPYS LOL. Credit: Kevin Merida. And, according to my radio co-host Mina Kimes, she’s very pretty.
Dessert: P.K. Subban, ladies and germs. Still one of the coolest dudes in sports.