What Had Happened Was Trending stories on the intersections of race, sports & culture

Daily Dose: 8/15/17

Durham goes hard in the paint

10:53 AMI’m back in the saddle with The Dan Le Batard Show on Tuesday, but if you missed it Monday, here you go. And for those of you in Bachelor Nation, you’re going to want to tune in Tuesday. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. EST on ESPN Radio.

Durham, North Carolina, ain’t messing around. Instead of letting their government get involved in tearing down a Confederate statue, residents did it themselves in plain view of everyone. And the memes that came out of that act are nothing short of amazing. Not only is a dude on the City Council dunking on people in his official email correspondence with constituents (see above), but folks are posing for pictures with the toppled monument, which is legitimately inspiring. But the best one, of course, involved Bubbachuck.

The Bachelor is back, this time in Paradise. Let’s not forget what happened over the offseason, if you will, which was that production of the show was shut down since a situation that unfolded between DeMario Jackson and Corinne Olympios was deemed inappropriate for the show. It was addressed on the program in a very strange manner, one that involved a) nearly showing the whole encounter and b) teasing it the entire show as if it were just some garden-variety controversy. Once again, it felt super slimy. Here’s a recap of the first episode.

It’s a well-known fact that strip clubs have some of the best food in Atlanta. Some would say the best chefs in the city, period, work at dancing establishments. There was a time when that would sound ridiculous, but when people tell you they’re going to the spot to eat the food, that’s the 2017 version of someone saying they subscribe to Playboy magazine to read the articles (which was a thing, for a while). Nonetheless, BET is capitalizing on this, and Yung Joc is hosting Plates and Poles, which highlights that culture.

The sports journalism business is hard. As is all of journalism. But in sports, because you have such a structured setup of teams, leagues, wins and losses, any coverage of a team has to be thorough by default for the effort to be worth anyone’s time. SB Nation built an empire on people basically doing that work for free or on a quasi-volunteer basis. Well, as it turns out, that system is pretty unfair and might actually violate labor laws. Here’s an in-depth look at how it all works.

Free Food

Coffee Break: There were a lot of rebukes sent the president’s way Monday. Stephen Colbert’s was funny, and Jimmy Fallon’s was a tad disingenuous because we all know who ruffled Trump’s hair on TV after he called all Mexicans racist. But Seth Myers’ was the best. Period.

Snack Time: We’re coming up on the end of summer, which means fall is around the corner. Which means that it’s time to get your pumpkin spice game up, whether you like it or not.

Dessert: Cardi B might drop a Spanish version of Bodak Yellow. God bless her soul.

Daily Dose: 8/14/17

Trump finally speaks up about white nationalists

4:14 PMI just want to thank all the people I got to build and connect with at the 2017 National Association of Black Journalists convention last week. It was a great time, and doing the live ESPN Radio broadcast from the floor was fun. Speaking of which, I’m hosting from 10 a.m-1 p.m. every day this week.

President Trump finally denounced the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis. It only took the better part of three days, after violence erupted in Charlottesville, Virginia, following a rally of white nationalists. On the surface, that’s scary because it genuinely empowered groups like these, who believe they have the support of the highest leader in the land. From a global standpoint, it doesn’t look good, either, when your commander in chief would rather tweet than help the nation heal at a time of crisis.

Speaking of that violent situation, there’s a lot to unpack. The private militias protecting marchers. The guy who killed Heather Heyer by running over a group of people with his car. The tiki torches on the University of Virginia lawn being carried by a bunch of guys who have no real understanding of what discrimination really is. People love to say, “This isn’t the America I know.” Well, that’s not quite true. And one website is specifically outing the people who were at said rally, because they look pretty much like everyday people to the rest of us.

When the level of discourse gets ratcheted up, things can become testy. Such was the case at CNN on Monday, when Ken Cuccinelli, former attorney general of Virginia, decided he was legitimately going to tell another guest to shut up live on air. Unfortunately, that person was Symone Sanders, and she does not play that nonsense. To host Chris Cuomo’s credit, he put Ken in his place, but the entire exchange was indicative of the kind of back-and-forth that black women deal with every day of the week.

You can add Jermichael Finley to the list of non-woke athletes. The Green Bay Packers tight end came out with the worst take ever, tweeting that “athletes are looked up to & serve as roll models, leave personal opinions about race and politics alone. Do what you get paid to do & play!” His typo aside, it’s incredible to think that even after this weekend, we’ve got guys out here who find it inappropriate to discuss what happens when hate groups take over towns.

Free Food

Coffee Break: There’s been a lot of talk about the national anthem recently. But, to that point, none of us had heard Quavo sing it. I don’t even know what to say afterward, as I’m in shock about how good this actually is. I’d definitely stand for this version.

Snack Time: In this time of crisis, we have to find a way to care for ourselves. This video of a bird feeding fish with seeds warms the heart.

Dessert: Don’t forget: On Monday night, we return to paradise. Hope you’re ready.

Daily Dose: 8/11/17

Happy Birthday, Hip-Hop

12:54 PMI have to say, this has been an incredible week. I’m loving New Orleans, and I got to see a live taping of Another Round, the podcast, which makes me extremely happy. NABJ is a good week if you’re in this business.

Remember when we talked about the impending doom of the world? When we worried about making sure we talked to all our old friends so they knew how much we loved them — just in case, you know, the world blows up because the president of the United States and the leader of North Korea are having a cucumber-measuring contest in their kitchens? It’s gotten so bad that credible people are genuinely suggesting that Twitter take away POTUS’s account. Until then, God help us all.

Hip-hop began on this day. At least, that’s when we celebrate. Back in 1973, the Bronx created the music that would legitimately make the world go ’round for the next 44 years and is still obviously going strong. It’s pretty remarkable when you think about it, as that’s not a particularly long time since Kool Herc decided to bless the globe with his talents. As a result, Google’s latest doodle is an homage to the art, and it’s got a super fun game involved too. Check out the history of how it came together.

If you want to know what is a bad idea, I’ll tell you: Making Nazi references in public places. And if you’re a media personality in a very prominent place, it’s definitely an easy way to lose a job. One guy learned this the hard way on Thursday. CNN decided to can Jeffrey Lord because in a Twitter back-and-forth (beware of those, kiddos) he legitimately used a Nazi salute. Dude then had the nerve to claim that the network was somehow caving to peer pressure by making that decision. That’s why they call it privilege, folks.

Leonard Fournette is a rookie. Leonard Fournette played at LSU. Leonard Fournette plays for the Jacksonville Jaguars. And Leonard Fournette thinks football is easy. Like, seriously. After the Jags’ preseason Week 1 victory over the New England Patriots, he straight-up said the NFL game is slower than he thought. Look, I don’t dislike this guy, but if he thinks that the first week out the gate on any level represents what big-time games are like, he needs some new friends. It’s the NFL. Dudes are going to be ready to destroy him based on that one quote alone. Good luck, homey.

Free Food

Coffee Break: Remember when we all thought that legalizing marijuana in places was going to lead to fewer arrests? Turns out, that’s not true. Want to know why? Because police officers love arresting black kids. In Colorado, arrests of black youth rose dramatically after things went legit. Shocker.

Snack Time: I’ve decided that my next international vacation is going to be to Japan. I also just might bring a skateboard along, because now we’ve got a guide on how to navigate Tokyo with a deck and four wheels.

Dessert: Guys, don’t do this. Trust me.

What Are Those?! Podcast: 12/21/16

Foamposites, Stephon Marbury’s sneaker legacy and ranking the top kicks of all time

5:34 PM

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Undefeated senior writer Jesse Washington has been in these sneaker streets heavy lately, combining his poetic flair with his love for kicks in spoken-word video tributes to the Air Jordan I and Puma Clyde.

Jesse joins the What Are Those?! podcast this week to discuss his latest ode to the Nike Air Foamposite One sneakrs, which will celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2017. We also talk Stephon Marbury, whose $15 kicks certainly changed the game before he made the jump from the NBA to playing in China.

And what better way to end the episode — and the year of 2016 — than to rank our favorite sneakers of all time. Every day this week, ESPN’s #NBARank series has counted down the definitive top 30 list of all-time kicks. On Friday, the top five will be unveiled, but until then, Jesse, co-host Marcus Matthews and I each give you our personal top 10 lists.

Give it a listen, and if you have any feedback or show ideas, feel free to email us at allday@theundefeated.com.

Daily Dose: 8/10/17

Diamond and Silk’s price tag is not particularly high

1:37 PMSo, New Orleans is pretty wild, y’all. And on Wednesday, broadcasting The Right Time live from the National Association of Black Journalists convention floor was a really fun experience. I think I’m going to a baseball game on Thursday, so that makes me happy. Very happy.

So, this Guam situation is terrifying. Ever since President Donald Trump puffed his chest out and tough-talked North Korea regarding nuclear war, the situation has legitimately escalated. Guam, if you don’t know, is a United States territory with two military bases. It’s effectively an outpost designed to help control the Pacific, but of course, actual people live there. However, Kim Jong-un doesn’t care. He’s got a plan to launch rockets at the island, and no matter what, this will not end well.

Remember Diamond and Silk? The two black women who spent all sorts of time in their YouTube stardom caping for the president? Well, they basically sold their souls for an amount of money that, even if it pays your rent for three months, is not worth it. For $1,300 they touted the current president, even when the Trump campaign lied about it forever. Then they went to the U.S. Department of Commerce and had their picture taken and posted by the agency, only to have it removed. What a weird story.

I knew that MLB salaries were wild once they started reaching lottery jackpot numbers. But instead of having to handle 95 mph fastballs and even more exploding sliders, you can win hundreds of millions of dollars just by playing the numbers. What’s even more insane is that Mega Millions and Powerball are both above $350M, which means that if you win both, you’ll actually get that much money, instead of half, because of Uncle Sam. I have no clue what I’d do with that much money. That’s a lie. I’d buy an indoor soccer team.

Zach Randolph is the man in my book. But Z-Bo also had for some time been in Memphis, where his status as a cult hero, never mind an NBA star, is well-known. He takes no funny business, and if you got into a fight, Randolph is definitely someone you’d want on your side. But he recently got caught up on a weed charge in Los Angeles, which is an awful look for a dude who just got traded to Sacramento. Of course, he was all smiles coming out of the lockup, but his people apparently were super wilding and destroyed a couple of cop cars. Zach, get it together, fam.

Free Food

Coffee Break: I imagine that Kelly Rowland’s life is pretty dope. She probably makes all sorts of cash on old Destiny’s Child records and doesn’t have the pressure to produce all sorts of hits like, say, Beyoncé. Now she’s making new music, with Syd of The Internet of all people.

Snack Time: Boogie Cousins and Ndamukong Suh have pretty big reputations as players who pretty much don’t care about anything other than themselves. And this Foot Locker commercial pointing that out is hilarious.

Dessert: This will make your day. If it doesn’t, you should check to see if your cord’s unplugged.