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#pounditTuesday, March 2, 2021



JJ Watt

Report: JJ Watt took less money to sign with Cardinals

The Arizona Cardinals fought off a number of teams to land J.J. Watt, and apparently did it without offering the most money. According to John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports 98.7 Phoenix, Watt had offers from the Cleveland Browns and Indianapolis Colts that offered him more money than he got from the Cardinals. The Tennessee Titans… Read More

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Video: Jamal Murray had hilarious reaction to Richard Jefferson in postgame interview

Jamal Murray

Video of a hilarious reaction Jamal Murray had when speaking with Richard Jefferson in a recent postgame interview went viral on Monday.

Murray scored 25 points in his Denver Nuggets’ 122-105 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Feb. 14. After the game, he participated in a postgame interview. But Murray didn’t know who his interview was with. He was stunned to hear the interviewer sternly tell him not to “yessir” him.

And who was on the other end of the interview? Jefferson. Stay until the end for Murray’s smile.

Murray himself enjoyed the video and tweeted about it.

The catch is that Jefferson is now a broadcaster after retiring from the NBA three years ago. His final season in 2017-2018 was spent with the Nuggets during Murray’s second season with the team.

Obviously Murray did not realize it was his former teammate doing the interview and was stunned to hear someone talk to him like that.

As we’ve seen, Jefferson can be pretty witty at a moment’s notice.

Deshaun Watson sure seems to love spending time in Miami

Deshaun Watson

Deshaun Watson sure seems to love spending time in Miami.

The Houston Texans quarterback was photographed hanging out at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach. The person pictured with Watson shared the photo on Instagram Sunday.

In February, Watson was dining with some Dolphins players at a Miami hotspot.

Watson has wanted a trade from the Texans since the season ended. The Dolphins are one of the teams Watson reportedly prefers as a trade destination, and they are listed among the favorites to get him. The problem for him is that the Texans appear to have no intent to let him go.

The 25-year-old quarterback has played four seasons in the NFL and passed for 33 touchdowns last season.

Trevor Lawrence posts photos showing his rehab from shoulder surgery

Trevor Lawrence

Trevor Lawrence is making his way back from his shoulder surgery.

Lawrence posted photos on his Instagram account Monday night. The photos show him doing some physical therapy-type of work. He appears to even be doing some weight work.

Lawrence underwent a procedure on his left shoulder in the middle of February. He was expected to have a 5-6 month recovery timeline.

Lawrence threw for scouts at Clemson’s Pro Day prior to getting the shoulder surgery. His performance at the Pro Day went well and should cement his status as one of the likely top picks in April’s draft.

Lawrence played three years at Clemson and passed for 10,098 yards, 90 touchdowns and 17 interceptions. He also rushed for 18 scores.

Nike executive Ann Hebert leaves company after report about her son’s shoe reselling business

Nike Swoosh logo

Nike executive Ann Hebert left the company just days after a report detailed the sneaker reselling business her son was operating.

Last week, Bloomberg Businessweek’s cover story was about Hebert’s 19-year-old son Joe. Joe is a hustler who makes money by reselling items, primarily sneakers.

In 2018, Ann disclosed information to Nike about her son’s reselling business. The company said at the time that Hebert did not violate “company policy, privileged information or conflicts of interest,” according to Bloomberg Businessweek.

But after last week’s story, Hebert reportedly resigned from her position as Nike’s vice president and general manager in North America. She oversaw sales, marketing and merchandising in the region.

Joe makes money by reselling hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of merchandise — mainly sneakers — on the secondary market. He says his margins are not big, so it’s a volume business for him. One of the big winning strategies for him and his partners is to use computer programs to circumvent the 1-per-customer limit imposed for some online sales items. They then take their supply of limited edition materials and resell them for profit.

So what is it about what Joe did that may have led his mother to resign from her job?

These sections from the original article may be the proverbial smoking guns:

Hebert’s competitors have access to the same bot software and StockX-borne real-time market research as he does. What they don’t have, according to some of his subscribers, is consistent, sound analysis of what shoes to buy, how to get them, and, crucially, how long resellers might expect demand to persist. Hebert declined to talk about his sources of information, but he did say he was lucky to have grown up in Portland, where both Nike and Adidas base their U.S. operations. “If you know the right people here, this is the city to sell shoes,” he said. The right people “can give you access to stuff that, like, a normal person would not have access to.”

Bloomberg also reported in their story that Joe used a credit card in his mother’s name to make purchases for the business. When Bloomberg reporter Joshua Hunt learned about what Joe’s mother did, Hunt asked Joe about the connection. Joe denied ever receiving inside information from his mother.

When I asked Hebert about the connection later that year, he acknowledged that Ann was his mother and said that, while she’d inspired him as a businessperson, she was so high up at Nike as to be removed from what he does, and that he’d never received inside information such as discount codes from her.

Even if Nike cleared Ann in 2018 over what her son was doing, the excerpts from the article do not reflect well.

Lonzo Ball has played himself out of trade talks?

Lonzo Ball

Lonzo Ball may have just taken his fate into his own hands with his excellent play of late.

Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer reported on Monday that there is now little expectation that the New Orleans Pelicans will move Ball before the trade deadline. Fischer adds that fellow guards JJ Redick and Eric Bledsoe still appear to be very much available, however.

The timing here hardly has to be coincidental for the 23-year-old Ball. He just wrapped up an impressive month of February where he put up 16.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 5.5 assists per game. Ball is also shooting three-pointers with much more confidence, connecting on a career-best 39.3 percent of them on the year as a whole.

There were some intriguing possible trade destinations mentioned for Ball. But his offensive game finally appears to be coming around to match his dynamic defense. Combine that with the strong chemistry that Ball shares with Zion Williamson, and you can see why the Pelicans would be smart to keep him around.

Joel Embiid says he ‘dominates’ Myles Turner

Joel Embiid

Joel Embiid isn’t always a huge trash talker, but he also doesn’t often hold back when it comes to his opinion. And he didn’t hold back after Monday night’s game.

Embiid’s Philadelphia 76ers beat the Indiana Pacers 130-114 on Monday night. Embiid had 24 points, 13 rebounds and five assists in the win, while Myles Turner was held to 11 points and three rebounds.

Embiid said after the game that he respects Turner, but he wasn’t shy about pointing out how he dominates the Pacers center.

“I say this respectfully, that’s a matchup I’ve dominated since I got to the league,” Embiid said.

Embiid may not have been trying to talk serious trash, but there’s no way Turner won’t take that comment disrespectfully. Maybe Embiid feels it’s only revenge for Turner calling him out a few years ago for flopping.

Ricky Rubio has more harsh words for Timberwolves

Ricky Rubio

Ricky Rubio’s second tour of duty with the Minnesota Timberwolves clearly has not been the jam.

The veteran guard had some more harsh words for the team after a blowout loss to the Phoenix Suns on Sunday.

“We have to build good habits from day one, and I don’t think we are in the right way, to be honest,” said Rubio, per Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. “I can be here and be positive like we’re trying to be and it’s OK. But we have the worst record in the league. We lost way too many games by 20-plus.

“I don’t feel like this is building something,” he added. “It’s hard. You always have to take positive things. Of course, we want to get better. But at some point we got to start wanting to change something, and it’s not happening.”

Not much has changed for the NBA-worst Wolves since they fired head coach Ryan Saunders and replaced him with Chris Finch. In fact, their nosedive continues, having lost all four of their games since Finch took over. It is true that the team has been decimated by injuries and COVID cases this year. But with so many young ex-lottery picks on the roster (including Karl-Anthony Towns, Anthony Edwards, D’Angelo Russell, and Jarrett Culver), you would expect Minnesota to be performing a lot better right now.

Rubio already expressed similar frustrations earlier this season. That makes it seem like there are deeper fundamental issues plaguing the organization.

Photo: Joe Bielawa/Flickr via CC-BY 2.0

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