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#pounditThursday, October 29, 2020

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JR Smith hints to Sam Dekker’s wife what ex-teammate said

JR Smith

JR Smith revealed during a recent podcast interview that Sam Dekker is the only teammate he has ever disliked, which left Dekker puzzled. Smith initially did not go into much detail about why he has negative feelings toward Dekker, but he later elaborated on Twitter.

Smith and Dekker were teammates on the Cleveland Cavaliers for a brief period in 2018. Smith said on the “All Things Covered” podcast that he never liked Dekker after Dekker was “talking some Trump s—” on the team bus one day. Dekker responded in a since-deleted tweet saying he doesn’t get into politics nor consider himself a Trump supporter.

Dekker’s wife Olivia also responded to the story, tweeting that people should “consider the source” and saying Smith’s portrayal of her husband is inaccurate. Smith replied to Olivia by claiming Sam used the N-word. Here’s the exchange:

If Dekker actually did use a racial slur in front of his teammates, Smith should have said that from the start. There’s a big difference between talking politics and throwing the N-word around, though there’s no proof that Dekker did either.

Dekker’s sociopolitical views once led to a crazy viral story in 2018, so it’s possible that also bothered Smith.

Shaq received his best financial advice from Magic Johnson

Shaquille O'Neal

Shaquille O’Neal is a savvy investor and businessman, but that wasn’t always the case. In fact, the former NBA star says that he was bad with money for a long time. What changed was when he signed with the Los Angeles Lakers in 1996 and received financial advice from Magic Johnson.

Shaq spoke with “Shark Tank” star Daymond John for a Black Entrepreneurs Day event. He shared his financial journey.

Shaq was so bad with money at first that when he made $1 million from a trading card endorsement deal, he blew it in one day. He spent it on three Mercedes cars for him and his family, some jewelry, and an extravagant trip to Las Vegas.

Shaq spent so much that he was called in by the president of the bank, who advised him to slow down on his spending. That’s when Shaq learned about taxes and the difference between gross and net incomes.

The Big Fella says he didn’t have things under control until he was in his mid-20s and with the Lakers.

“When I first got to L.A., [Johnson] said ’Shaq, it’s okay to be famous and all that but at some point, you want to start owning things,’” O’Neal said.

O’Neal decided he wanted to own a clothing line. From there, he began learning a lot more.

Shaq works as a broadcaster for TNT and has multiple product endorsement deals. He makes more now than we he did as a player. He owns multiple restaurant franchise stores, franchise gyms, several car washes, and he’s on the board for Papa John’s. That’s not at all bad from a guy with an SAT score like Shaq’s.

Sam Dekker responds to being called out by JR Smith over ‘Trump’ stuff

Sam Dekker

Sam Dekker is confused after being called out by ex-teammate JR Smith.

Smith and Dekker were briefly teammates on the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2018. During a recent podcast interview, Smith identified Dekker as the only teammate he ever disliked.

Smith did not really specify what Dekker did that was bad, but said the former Wisconsin star was talking some “Trump s—.”

Dekker responded on Twitter in a since-deleted tweet.

“Well I am just as confused as yall (sic) lol. I’m pretty simple, I’ve never been one to get into politics. Especially ‘Trump s–t’ … I’ve never been a Trump guy, so this blindsided me …

“When they go low we go high”

“Thanks moving on,” Dekker wrote.

Dekker, 26, played four seasons in the NBA after being drafted No. 18 overall by Houston in 2015. He spent two seasons with the Rockets, a season with the Clippers, and was with Cleveland briefly in 2018 before being traded to Washington. He did not play in the NBA last season and instead played in Russia. He is currently playing in Turkey.

Dekker does not mind calling out Twitter trolls when necessary, though he did not go after Smith directly in this case.

MLB to investigate Justin Turner for refusing to isolate after positive coronavirus test

Justin Turner

Major League Baseball is blaming Justin Turner for the fact that he celebrated on the field after the Los Angeles Dodgers won the World Series.

Turner was removed from Game 6 after seven innings upon MLB’s receipt of his positive COVID-19 test. Despite this, he was seen on the field celebrating with teammates after the game ended.

In a statement issued Wednesday, the league made clear that Turner ignored orders to refrain from going on the field. MLB promised a “full investigation” and blamed Turner for putting “everyone he came in contact with at risk.”

It’s clear that MLB isn’t happy, nor should they be. Turner celebrating on the field after testing positive was a terrible look for the league. It’s not clear if Turner will be punished, though, or how he even can be.

Baker Mayfield rips ‘insensitive’ narrative about Odell Beckham Jr.

Baker Mayfield

Odell Beckham Jr. suffered a torn ACL on Sunday and will miss the rest of the season. While it seems like the Cleveland Browns’ offense should take a huge step back without him, some have openly wondered if Baker Mayfield will be better off.

Mayfield is not willing to entertain that theory.

A reporter asked Mayfield on Wednesday about the idea that he may feel less pressure to force the ball to Beckham now and thus produce at a higher level. Mayfield said he finds the notion “completely insensitive” given the injury to Beckham.

“I think it’s just completely insensitive to a guy who just tore his ACL,” Mayfield said. “I’m not even gonna comment on it. You never want to lose guys. That’s where I’m gonna leave that one.”

Mayfield and Beckham have not lit it up quite the way people hoped they would when the Browns acquired OBJ in a trade with the New York Giants. However, Beckham still had over 1,000 yards receiving last year and had scored three touchdowns in six-plus games this season. Even if Mayfield feels like he can spread the ball around more with Beckham out, the Browns still will have far less talent on the field now.

We’ve seen examples this season of the explosive, game-changing plays Beckham is capable of making. Cleveland will have to find ways to make those plays without him now.

Kevin Cash tries to explain why he removed Blake Snell

Kevin Cash

Kevin Cash made one of the most baffling decisions in World Series history when he pulled Blake Snell in the sixth inning of Game 6, and the Tampa Bay Rays manager had better get used to answering questions about it.

The Los Angeles Dodgers were dominated by Snell, who had arguably his best stuff of the season. The left-hander allowed just one hit through five innings and struck out nine. With the Rays leading 1-0 and one out in the sixth, Snell allowed a base hit to Austin Barnes. Cash came out of the dugout without hesitation and pulled his starter, who understandably looked disgusted.

Cash was asked about the decision after the game and called it “gut-wrenching.” He also stood by the move and said the Dodgers have such a good lineup that he didn’t want Snell having to face their hitters a third time.

“I’m OK with the decision,” Cash said. “I think that’s what makes us special is we rely on each other and we value information. Knowing how talented the Dodgers’ lineup is, to avoid any pitcher from seeing them three times through makes a lot of sense.”

Cash specifically said he didn’t want Snell to have to face Mookie Betts and Corey Seager a third time. Both were 0-2 against Snell with two strikeouts.

Nick Anderson entered the game with a 1-0 lead and a runner on first. He allowed a double to Betts. Then Barnes scored on a wild pitch to tie the game. The Dodgers took a 2-1 lead on a Seager fielder’s choice.

While Cash insists he is comfortable with the decision to pull Snell, even his own players openly disagreed with it. Rays centerfielder Kevin Kermaier said he doesn’t care about numbers and “that was Blake’s game.”

Cash will have to live with the choice, but there’s no question it was the wrong one. He made a similar move when he pulled Snell early in the ALCS, and that also resulted in a Tampa Bay loss. The way Dodgers players reacted to Snell getting the hook said it all.

Dodgers fans! It’s time to celebrate the World Series championship this great shirt. It makes a great gift for yourself or a friend. You can buy it here.

This may explain why Rob Manfred was slurring speech after game

Rob Manfred

Those watching the postgame show after the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Tampa Bay Rays 3-1 in Game 6 to win the World Series at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas on Tuesday night likely heard MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred slurring his speech and sounding weird.

Here is how Manfred sounded:

Manfred has never been known to have speech problems, so many people were wondering what was going on.

Some TV reporters who have experience being on air for such situations explained what they thought was the reason. They believe that Manfred was thrown off by an echo from wearing an earpiece while his voice was going out over the PA.

Manfred’s speech was anything but smooth. He was speaking like he definitely had some interference.

Manfred should also expect to answer lots of questions about Justin Turner joining the Dodgers for the postgame celebration.

Justin Turner joins Dodgers for team photo after winning World Series despite positive test

Justin Turner celebration

Justin Turner was able to celebrate with his teammates after the Los Angeles Dodgers won the World Series on Tuesday night despite his positive COVID-19 test.

Turner was removed from the Dodgers’ 3-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays in Game 6 before the eighth inning after it was learned he had tested positive for COVID-19. Many thought that meant he would miss the team’s championship celebration, but the Dodgers third baseman found a way to join his team.

Turner got a chance to hold the World Series trophy.

He even joined the team for the team photo.

Dodgers players are expected to receive rapid PCR tests upon returning to their team hotel.

The Dodgers captured their first World Series since 1988. Corey Seager was named World Series MVP.

Dodgers fans! It’s time to celebrate the World Series championship this great shirt. It makes a great gift for yourself or a friend. You can buy it here.

MLB pitchers react to Kevin Cash’s terrible decision to pull Blake Snell

Blake Snell

Kevin Cash’s horrendous decision to pull Blake Snell from Game 6 of the World Series on Tuesday night is going to be talked about for years to come. Those watching the game could not believe the Tampa Bay Rays manager’s decision to yank his ace in the middle of a gem while up 1-0 on the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Several MLB pitchers weighed in on Twitter about the decision and expressed their shock and dismay over the move. Here are tweets from pitchers Noah Syndergaard, Lucas Giolito, Taijuan Walker, and Jack Flaherty.

Hall of Famers Chipper Jones and Frank Thomas couldn’t believe it either.

Christian Yelich also had a great reaction to the move.

Cash’s decision immediately backfired, as the Rays blew a 1-0 lead and fell behind 2-1 in the sixth inning after removing Snell.

About the only question you can ask is which quick hook was worse: Cash’s or AJ Hinch’s last year?

Christian Yelich had great reaction to Kevin Cash’s terrible move

Christian Yelich

Christian Yelich had a great reaction to Kevin Cash’s terrible managerial move in Game 6 of the World Series on Tuesday night.

Cash pulled Blake Snell in the middle of a nine-strikeout shutout all because the southpaw allowed a hit in the sixth inning (just his second of the game). Snell’s Tampa Bay Rays were leading the Los Angeles Dodgers 1-0 at the time.

Cash’s moronic move immediately backfired, as Nick Anderson gave up a double, uncorked a wild pitch that scored the tying run, and then let another run score on a fielder’s choice.

In response to Cash’s move, Yelich, the 2018 NL MVP, tweeted a GIF of a man bashing a computer, though he later deleted it.

That seemed to be Yelich’s way of saying he wanted to murder whatever statistical formula told Cash that taking Snell out was the right move. We all would like to do the same.

The Rays have a process they trust when it comes to handling their pitchers, but that process does not seem to include factoring in what to do when your pitcher is cruising. If it did, there would be no way to justify removing Snell from the game.

Dodgers fans! It’s time to celebrate the World Series championship this great shirt. It makes a great gift for yourself or a friend. You can buy it here.