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Saturday, February 25, 2017

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Lil B threatens Shaq with Based God Curse after JaVale McGee spat

Lil B Warriors

The Based God is threatening another prominent NBA personality.

Lil B, whose infamous Based God Curse has been the stuff of nightmares for the likes of Kevin Durant and James Harden, also happens to be from the Bay Area and a big Warriors fan. So when Shaquille O’Neal and JaVale McGee went after each other on Friday, the Based God stepped in.

This is also a convenient reminder that Harden is, indeed, still cursed. Apparently this statement wasn’t quite accurate.

It’s not entirely clear how a Based God Curse would impact Shaq, who no longer plays. To be clear, Shaq is not cursed yet, but it seems that he’s very much on notice if he continues going after McGee. You don’t want to mess with this one, Shaq. Just ask Harden about it.

Rory McIlroy defends playing golf with Donald Trump

Rory McIlroy

Rory McIlroy has taken a lot of heat for playing golf with President Donald Trump in Florida over the weekend, and he responded with a statement on Friday.

The current world No. 3 golfer was invited to play a round of golf with Trump at Trump International Golf Club in Florida and accepted despite having a rib injury. He took a lot of criticism for playing with the polarizing president, but said in a statement that accepting the invitation was not a political statement nor an endorsement of Trump’s policies:

McIlroy has tried to avoid the political spotlight in the past. Rather than decide between playing for Ireland or the United Kingdom in the Olympics, he decided not to participate at all.

It’s also worth noting that McIlroy visited the White House in 2012 when President Obama was in office:

Given that information, it seems like McIlroy is just playing it even and trying to avoid controversy, which is something he had enough of with this last month.

Samantha Hoopes wants to date John Elway

Samantha Hoopes

Somebody get John Elway on the phone, because he has a deal to close — unrelated to football.

Model Samantha Hoopes was a guest on “The Domenick Nati Show” Thursday and was asked which athlete or celebrity she’d want to date.

“I don’t know. I kind of have more girl crushes than I do guy crushes. But guy wise? I would date … John … he’s an old guy now — he’s not playing anymore.”

When asked if she meant John Elway, Hoopes said yes.

“By far. I think he’s a gentleman. I’m going retro.”

It’s pretty stunning to hear a 26-year-old call a 56-year-old her crush, but that was the case.

Hoopes was also asked about a celebrity she enjoyed meeting the least and said Colin Kaepernick.

“That’s the only one I can say that was a little weird to me,” Hoopes said. “There was catering out and he couldn’t eat half the stuff on there because there was a sauce on the chicken. I was like ‘whoa, you can’t even have the sauce? This is kind of intense.’ I get it’s for his job, but still, a little sauce one day is not going to kill you.”

Well, given that Kaepernick is a professional football player, you have to respect his commitment to his diet.

And maybe Hoopes is trying to make it happen with Elway after not having any luck with this basketball player.

Ricky Rubio admits dealing with trade rumors was difficult

Ricky Rubio

Minnesota Timberwolves point guard Ricky Rubio didn’t get traded before Thursday’s deadline passed, but after spending weeks being at the center of rumors, he’s glad it’s over.

Rubio has been a rumored trade target many times in the past, but he admitted that the rumors felt this time differently and they are hard to cope with.

“As pros, we know what’s the deal,” Rubio said, via Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune. “But this time felt a little different.

“I mean, we’re professionals, but we’re human beings, too. So we have feelings, but I know this is a business and it has to be like that.”

Rubio tried not to worry about what he couldn’t control, but conceded that it wasn’t easy to hear the rumors.

“Mentally, it’s tough, but there are things you can’t control,” Rubio said. “We’re playing basketball. There are people who decide where you’re going to play. You can’t control that. You come here and work hard every day and that’s it.

“I’m not going to lie, you hear the rumors. But until it doesn’t happen, I didn’t expect anything. I’m still here. I have my apartment here. After practice, I go to my apartment and take a nap and everything is like it was before.”

Rubio looked for a while like he was headed to New York, but the Timberwolves refused to pull the trigger. The point guard has been popping up in rumors pretty much since Tom Thibodeau took over as the team’s president and coach, and it will likely continue once the offseason starts.

Muhammad Ali Jr. detained at airport, considering lawsuit

Muhammad Ali’s son was detained at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport earlier this month, and he thinks it’s because of profiling and discrimination.

Muhammad Ali Jr. was detained for two hours at the airport upon returning from Jamaica on Feb. 7 despite carrying a passport and not having a criminal record. He says he was asked twice if he is Muslim.

“This is an outrage,” a family spokesperson told the Miami New Times. “I don’t know what is going on with Mr. Trump’s claim that his ban is not religion-based. We do not discriminate in this country based on religion.”

Ali Jr.’s spokesperson told TMZ Sports they are looking into a lawsuit against the U.S. Treasury and Homeland Security department, possibly as a larger class action suit.

President Trump signed an executive order on Jan. 27 barring travelers from seven countries from entering the U.S. Many believed it was specifically targeted at Muslims. On Feb. 3 — four days prior to Ali Jr.’s detainment — a federal judge blocked the nationwide ban. A federal appeals court rejected the Justice Department’s attempt to have the ban restored.

Terrence Jones reportedly interested in joining Celtics

Even if they let this year’s trade deadline pass without making a move, the Boston Celtics may still have a viable path towards improving their roster.

Responding to a question from a Twitter follower on Friday, Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders reported that free agent big man Terrence Jones is interested in joining the Celtics.

The 25-year-old Jones was released by the New Orleans Pelicans earlier this week after their acquisition of DeMarcus Cousins. He holds averages of 11.5 points and 5.9 rebounds per game this season.

As it stands right now, Al Horford seems to be the only Celtics big man whose role is set in stone. Amir Johnson is the other starter alongside him, but he focuses mainly on screening, defense, and rebounding and is averaging fewer minutes per game this year than Kelly Olynyk. Also competing for the remaining playing time have been Jonas Jerebko and Tyler Zeller.

A post-up, face-up, and (occasional) spot-up threat, Jones would probably be the best offensive player of those non-Horford options. A pairing could also serve a mutual benefit with the Celtics a legitimate Eastern contender but one that could still use an upgrade or two. Perhaps we’ll know it’s real when Isaiah Thomas tweets another emoji.

Report: Ole Miss tried to implicate Mississippi State in football scandal

The Ole Miss football program is in serious trouble with the NCAA, but a report indicates that during the investigation into potential violations, they tried to take a rival program down with them.

Neal McCready of RebelGrove.com details how, when turning over evidence to NCAA investigators, included a recording of a recruit’s mother requesting money from Ole Miss and listing things she got from other programs, one of which was Mississippi State.

Lewis, a highly-touted 2015 recruit, did ultimately sign with Mississippi State.

Ole Miss is facing major consequences regarding a lack of institutional control, including mounting evidence that they provided illegal benefits to players. It doesn’t appear that their efforts to drag their in-state rival down with them have proven successful.

H/T Saturday Down South

Dennis Schröder suspended by Hawks for reporting back late from All-Star break

Dennis Schröder’s second half of the season is off to an inauspicious start.

The Atlanta Hawks announced on Friday that they have suspended the German point guard without pay for one game for “failure to report to the team on time after the All-Star break.” Schröder will serve the suspension when the Hawks host the Miami Heat tonight.

According to Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Schröder traveled to his native Germany over the break and encountered a visa problem upon attempting to return the US.

With Jeff Teague no longer in the mix, the 23-year-old Schröder has been having a career year as the Hawks’ starting point guard with averages of 17.5 points and 6.3 assists per game. The team made a big financial commitment to him last offseason, so hopefully this is just a one-off incident.

Kristaps Porzingis reportedly avoided ligament damage with ankle injury

Kristaps Porzingis

New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis was spotted wearing a walking boot after Thursday’s game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, but it sounds as though he avoided a serious injury.

Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical reports that Porzingis did not suffer ligament damage in his ankle, though he could miss multiple games.

The Knicks would be wise to err on the side of caution with Porzingis, who may just be all the franchise has going for it at the moment. Porzingis, 21, is averaging 18.1 points, 7.1 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game in his second NBA season.

If his tweet from Thursday was any indication, Porzingis is just as frustrated as the rest of Knicks nation at the moment.

Report: Giants will be ‘aggressive’ in trying to sign Jason Pierre-Paul

The New York Giants are going to have to pay big bucks to keep Jason Pierre-Paul around, and early indications are that they are willing to do that.

Ralph Vacchiano of SNY said this week that the Giants are planning to be “aggressive” in trying to sign Pierre-Paul to an extension. However, they may run into some issues with the salary cap, as they already have two defensive linemen in Damon Harrison, who signed a five-year, $46.25 million contract last offseason, and Olivier Vernon, who set the market last year with a five-year, $85 million deal that includes $52 million guaranteed.

So how can the Giants afford to pay top dollar to yet another member of their front seven?

That’s likely where the “aggressive” part comes in. Pierre-Paul has already said he has no intention of signing another short-term deal, but the Giants could get him for slightly less if they are able to come to an agreement before the start of free agency next month. Even if he is not planning to sign another one-year deal, perhaps JPP will show some loyalty to a team that stuck with him through a horrific accident.

One option for the Giants could be the franchise tag, but that would take up about half of the $35 million in cap space they currently have heading into 2017. The ideal scenario for New York is to get Pierre-Paul to sign a long-term extension before testing the market.

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