Nothing can escape the glare of Donald Trump's buffoonery in 2017. With Americans angry over his lacking response to white supremacists, an unexpected group is calling for his ouster: wrestling fans.
But no, they're not asking for him to be impeached. WWE fans are worried about an institution that is much more sacred, the WWE Hall of Fame. Gothamist spoke to a group of fans gathered outside the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, and they believe there is precedent for Trump to be removed from the hall.
“We were talking about how Trump gave that crazy press conference, and then thought about how he's in the WWE Hall of Fame even though Hulk Hogan got kicked out over racism,” said John Stevens, one of the men arguing Trump should get the boot. “What Trump has done is remarkably worse than what Hogan did, since he's dividing the country by siding with neo-Nazis and white nationalists.”
Stevens would continue, claiming that it reflects poorly on the company to keep Trump in. “I was sickened by that press conference, and his response to Charlottesville,” Stevens said. “WWE is endorsing those comments by having [Trump] in their Hall of Fame. I can't wrap my brain around the fact that they'd leave him in there, take Hogan out and claim they say they care about racism.”
Trump has taken a lot of heat for his handling of the tragic situation in Charlottesville, Virginia, blaming “many sides” in the immediate aftermath of a white supremacist running over a counter-protester, Heather Heyer.
In fairness, if racism was the driving force behind a possible Trump ouster, the WWE didn't exactly need the Charlottesville aftermath to be affiliated with racism. In the late 1980s, he took out full-page ads in major New York newspapers calling for the death penalty in the case of the “Central Park Five,” in which a group of black men were eventually exonerated after facing sexual assault charges. Decades later, he refused to back down from his stance in spite ofDNA evidence and confessions from the actual assailant.
The rest of his history isn't a whole lot better, if at all. He accused a federal judge of being biased against him because of Mexican heritage (the judge was born in Indiana), he was sued repeatedly for not renting to black tenants, his casinos were fined for removing African-American card dealers at a gambler's request, claimed Barack Obama was a foreign-born Muslim (he is not and it wouldn't matter if he was Muslim anyway), and attacked the family of a deceased U.S. Army officer after they spoke out against him during the 2016 election.
So yeah, WWE fans upset with him being in the Hall of Fame have a point, even if it's one that could have been made when he was originally inducted into the Hall in 2013. Though his normalization through WWE was not as big of a problem as it is now that he's in the most powerful office in America, the lusterof his Hair vs. Hair match against Vince McMahon is not more important than showing your fans you give a damn about racism.
But who knows! Maybe this will give WWE the kick in the ass it needs to take action. Given that McMahon is a close friend and supporter of Trump's don't expect him to get booted from the Hall of Fame anytime soon.
It seems there’s a new twist every day in the Kyrie Irving drama. To recap the major points: the 25-year-old point guard asked Cleveland for a trade in July. He said there were four teams he’d be wiling to go to: Miami, New York, Minnesota, and San Antonio. Then word got out that Kyrie wanted the trade because he was tired of playing with LeBron James, and he’d actually wanted to get out of town for a long time.
For now, it seems the Cavs are content to bide their time until a compelling offer comes along. They watched Chicago and Indiana deal their stars (Jimmy Butler and Paul George, respectively) for peanuts and then get roasted by the NBA world, and Cleveland doesn’t want to replicate the error of those franchises.
Thus, the big question is: if Cleveland wants to go into this season with both Kyrie and LeBron on the roster, could they coexist? Their former teammate Dahntay Jones thinks so.
Jones appeared on SiriusXM NBA Radio Thursday and said the rifts in their relationship have been dramatized in the media.
“Nothing's to a point where it can't be fixed,” Jones said. “It can be fixed with a small conversation.”
Jones spent parts of the last two seasons with James and Irving on the Cavs. Based on reports, it’s sure seemed like the relationship between the two stars is beyond the point of no return—it seems like they couldn’t play together this coming season. Adding to that narrative, James is back in Subtweet Bron form.
The latest development in DMX's tax evasion case finds the rapper finally catching a break. After pleading not guilty back in July, X was let out on bond but faced strict conditions, including travel restrictions. However, he violated that last part with a trip to St. Louis—a trip that might have landed him in jail.
However, on Friday morning the judge took it easy on DMX, keeping him out of jail despite his travel violation—and despite the fact that the Ruff Ryders icon failed four separate drug tests for marijuana and cocaine, according to TMZ.
Instead, X was placed on house arrest and ordered to wear an ankle bracelet. TMZ reports that the conditions are so strict that he can't even go outside to mow the lawn.
DMX is accused of hiding millions of bucks in income from the government in order to avoid taxes. In all, the U.S. attorney's office says the alleged “multi-year scheme” had X skipping out on a $1.7 million tax bill.
“For years, Earl Simmons, the recording artist and performer known as DMX, made millions from his chart-topping songs, concert performances and television shows. But while raking in millions from his songs, including his 2003 hit 'X Gon' Give it to Ya,' DMX didn’t give any of it to the IRS,” wrote Joon Kim, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, who was probably working on that joke for weeks. “Far from it, DMX allegedly went out of his way to evade taxes, including by avoiding personal bank accounts, setting up accounts in other’s names and paying personal expenses largely in cash.”
If Carmelo Anthony isn’t back with the Knicks next season, the thought is that he will end up with either the Rockets or the Cavaliers. There have been trade rumors swirling around Carmelo for months now, and just about all of those rumors end with him in either a Houston or Cleveland jersey. Carmelo has a no-trade clause in his contract that allows him to nix deals to any teams he doesn’t want to play for, so he can basically force the Knicks' hand and get them to trade him to the team he wants to play for. As a result, you’re probably not going to see him playing anywhere other than New York, Houston, or Cleveland next season.
But one new potential landing spot for Carmelo emerged this week when the Trail Blazers’ top two players both started to indicate that they would love to be in the discussion for Carmelo this summer. Earlier this week, C.J. McCollum raised more than a few eyebrows when he posted a photo of Carmelo in a Portland jersey on Instagram:
And at a basketball camp on Wednesday, McCollum and his teammate Damian Lillard revealed that they have been actively trying to recruit Carmelo to come to Portland in recent days. Lillard imagined what it would be like to add Carmelo to the Blazers’ current roster:
McCollum went as far as to say that Carmelo was “interested” in what they had to say.
McCollum also did an interview on SiriusXM NBA Radio on Wednesday, and he suggested that, if the Trail Blazers were to add Carmelo to the mix, Portland would immediately leapfrog a bunch of teams and land near the top of the Western Conference.
“If we add Carmelo Anthony, we’ll be a top-three team in the West immediately,” he said.
McCollum also reiterated that point when he responded to a @siriusxmnba tweet that featured his “top-three team” quote and wrote, “Facts.”
Despite McCollum and Lillard’s interest in Carmelo, it doesn’t sound like Carmelo is as “interested” in getting traded to Portland as the two Trail Blazers players think he is. The New York Daily News reported Wednesday night that, despite McCollum and Lillard’s pitch, Carmelo is still not willing to waive his no-trade clause for anyone other than the Rockets and Cavaliers. A source told the NYDN that the Blazers are “positioned well” to get into the mix if Carmelo expands his list of teams. But at least for now, McCollum and Lillard are out of luck.
The idea of Carmelo playing for Portland seems like a longshot. But then again, if you had told us that Paul George would end up on the Thunder just a few weeks ago, we would have called you crazy for suggesting that, too. Stay tuned to see where Carmelo ultimately ends up playing after this whirlwind of a summer.
Nearly three months after reportedly checking into rehab, the 46-year-old is now facing 14 counts of tax evasion. He surrendered to federal authorities Thursday and is scheduled to appear in federal court Friday in Manhattan.
According to Billboard, the rapper has been accused of concealing millions of dollars of income from the IRS to avoid paying $1.7 million in taxes. Joon Kim, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, released a statement outlining DMX's “multi-year scheme.”
“For years, Earl Simmons, the recording artist and performer known as DMX, made millions from his chart-topping songs, concert performances and television shows. But while raking in millions from his songs, including his 2003 hit ‘X Gon’ Give it to Ya,’ DMX didn’t give any of it to the IRS,” Kim wrote. “Far from it, DMX allegedly went out of his way to evade taxes, including by avoiding personal bank accounts, setting up accounts in other’s names and paying personal expenses largely in cash.”
Prosecutors also accused DMX of providing false information on bankruptcy court documents. He allegedly listed his 2011 and 2012 earnings as “unknown,” and listed his 2013 income as $10,000; it was later revealed he had earned hundreds of thousands of dollars each of those years.
The indictment also states the rapper refused to film the reality show Celebrity Couples Therapy until he was reissued a $125,000 check that had no withholding taxes.
“Celebrity rapper or not, all Americans must pay their taxes,” Kim wrote, “and together with our partners at the IRS, we will pursue those who deliberately and criminally evade this basic obligation of citizenship.”
If convicted, DMX could face up to 44 years in federal prison.
ASAP Rocky has convinced the world that New York artists could sound like they’re from Houston, shown that rappers could dress like they stepped off a Paris runway, designed sneakers with Adidas and Jeremy Scott, and modeled for Dior. But now he's signed himself up for one of the biggest tasks of his career: making Under Armour relevant in the world that he's dominated for much of this decade.
By most mainstream measures, Under Armour already is “cool.” They've snatched up big names in sports like Steph Curry, Tom Brady, Jordan Spieth, Cam Newton, and Aaron Judge, and the brand’s on-field success has been nothing short of impeccable. Unfortunately, that hasn’t been quite enough to give the brand cultural impact that transcends beyond professional sports.
The brand is clearly hoping to change that. It was reported on July 8 that Rocky had signed a multi-year deal with the Maryland sportswear company to work on lifestyle product for its UAS range, which is directed by fashion designer Tim Coppens and focuses apparel and sneakers that don’t feature the Under Armour logo — something that's driven style-oriented people away from the brand in the past.
It’s been the butt of many Internet jokes in recent times, most notably its all-white Steph Curry sneakers, and its move to bring Rocky onboard is a clear sign that it’s trying to chase a different consumer; one that’s eschewed its shoes for Nike and Adidas. It’s already worn by suburban dads and young teens who actually play basketball, but convincing everyone else to buy into the sneakers is a different story.
It was once controversial to claim that artists and musicians are the new athletes in the footwear industry, but Kanye West and Adidas (followed by a whole host of other entertainers and companies) have proved that notion wrong. Yeezys are flying off shelves at a breakneck pace while LeBrons are collecting dust and going on sale. And Under Armour’s move of signing Rocky proves that even the most sports-focused company realizes that it needs to get younger and hipper to grab its stake in the shoe game. The company has already signed The Rock to a big deal, but it didn’t make an impact with the cool-guy demographic, an audience that it so desperately wants to resonate with. It won’t, however, be as seamless as attaching one of the biggest names in hip-hop to a sneaker brand and watching the money roll in. Rocky is going to have to work his ass off to make this partnership truly work.
If anyone thinks Rocky’s contribution, in terms of influence, is insignificant, consider this for a second: With 6.3 million instagram followers, he has nearly twice as many as Under Armour’s main account.
Let’s think of the possibilities for a second. If Rocky is able to create product that truly inspires his fan base, there’s no way that it’s not going to sell out, and it will only create a snowball effect for Under Armour. Don’t believe me? You’d be hard-pressed to find a high percentage of the Yeezy/Boost fanboys who owned a pair of sneakers with Three Stripes on them prior to Kanye and Adidas working together in 2015, but now the brand has, literally, boosted its sales and has overtaken Nike and Jordan Brand in terms of resonance with the millennial audience.
It’s not going to be easy, though. This isn’t Under Armour’s first foray into lifestyle product. It’s made luxury, off-court sneakers for Steph Curry and even launched them at leading boutique Concepts. The brand made a huge push behind its Tim Coppens line, too, and it’s just fallen flat. It even has Migos promoting the label, but they haven’t consistently worn the product in the public eye and it’s failed to make a huge impact. Rocky could change all of that. His connection as a designer/signature artist is much greater than paying him to simply wear Under Armour. People have spouted on social media that they’re already going to buy their first pair of Under Armours, but all of that will be proven when his shoes finally are available at retail.
What makes Rocky’s partnership with the brand intriguing is that he’s notorious for being someone who won’t wear or co-sign anything that he’s not truly into. It’s likely that he sees this opportunity as a chance to boost his profile as someone who’s taken seriously as a designer in the style world, and who doesn’t want their name attached to a commercially successful sneaker? Imagine if Under Armour lets him design a sneaker for Steph Curry to wear during the All-Star Game? That’s visibility that even his music, likely, won’t achieve. But these are all what-ifs. It all starts with making a good pair of shoes, and the rest will follow.
Are you super excited about that big-name free agent your favorite NBA team just signed? Well, you should be. If nothing else, it shows that your team is at least trying to win, right?
But before you get too excited about the move, we should warn you that things might not work out exactly the way you think they will when that free agent joins your team. In some cases, the free agent might not jell with the guys your team already has on its roster. In others, the free agent might not be as motivated as he used to be after signing a long-term deal worth tens of millions of dollars. And sometimes, free agents just don’t turn out to be as good as people thought they were going to be. Not every free agent is LeBron James or Kevin Durant.
There will be dozens of players who change teams this summer through free agency, and some of them will make a big difference for the teams that sign them. But as you’re about to find out, that isn’t always the case. Here are the 12 worst NBA free agent signings in recent memory.
Year: 2006 Signed with: Bulls Contract: 4 years, $60 million What happened next: Most people wondered what the Bulls were doing when they signed Wallace to a deal in the first place. He was never known for putting up offensive numbers, and he looked like a guy who was past his prime at the end of his time with the Pistons. So it didn’t come as much of a surprise when he averaged just 3.5 points and 5.2 rebounds per game with the Bulls through two seasons before being traded to the Cavaliers in 2008.
Year: 2007 Signed with: Magic Contract: 6 years, $118 million What happened next: When Orlando acquired Lewis in a sign-and-trade with the SuperSonics, they thought they were getting a guy who could turn into the cornerstone of their franchise for years to come. And while Lewis put up a respectable 16.6 points per game during his time with the Magic, he never developed into the player they thought he would be, and Orlando eventually traded him to the Wizards after just four seasons.
Year: 2008 Signed with: 76ers Contract: 5 years, $80 million What happened next: Brand has become somewhat of a beloved figure in Philadelphia because he spurned the Clippers to sign with the Sixers, making him one of the only big-name free agents to ever choose Philly as his free agency destination. But Brand struggled with injuries throughout his time with the Sixers and only averaged 12.7 points and 7.2 rebounds before the team used the amnesty clause to release him in 2012.
Year: 2009 Signed with: Pistons Contract: 5 years, $55 million What happened next: Then-Pistons general manager Joe Dumars tried to make a big splash in the summer of 2009 by signing Gordon to this deal and Charlie Villanueva to a five-year, $35 million contract. It got some people in Detroit excited about what was to come, but the Pistons missed the playoffs for the first time in almost a decade the following season—and then proceeded to miss the postseason in each of the following five seasons as well. Gordon and Villanueva aren’t the only guys to blame for that, but they certainly weren’t the players the Pistons expected them to be when the team signed them.
Year: 2009 Signed with: Raptors Contract: 5 years, $53 million What happened next: Turkoglu’s one and only season in Toronto was a disaster. After the Raptors convinced him to leave the Magic to sign with them, his scoring dipped to just 11.3 points per game—he averaged 19.5 and 16.8 points per game in the two seasons before that—and he was a defensive liability every time he was on the court. He was also overweight for most of the year and didn’t seem to want to play for the Raptors, which is why they shipped him to the Suns in 2010.
Year: 2013 Signed with: Pistons Contract: 4 years, $54 million What happened next: When you sign a contract this large, you’re expected to be a key contributor. And make no mistake about it: Smith tried to turn into a big-time scorer for the Pistons. He took more than 300 three-pointers in a little more than a season with Detroit. But he shot just 26 percent from three and was clearly not the playmaker the Pistons were looking for. They sent him to the Rockets two months into his second season with the team.
Year: 2014 Signed with: Hornets Contract: 2 years, $18 million What happened next: After providing a spark for the Pacers through his first four seasons in the NBA, Stephenson cashed in by skipping town and signing with the Hornets. Charlotte thought he would be able to take his game to the next level with them. But he sputtered in his first season with the Hornets, averaging just 8.2 points and 3.9 assists per game, before he was shipped to the Clippers in 2015.
Year: 2015 Signed with: Mavericks Contract: 4 years, $70 million What happened next: If you look at Matthews’ numbers with Dallas, they aren’t awful. He’s averaged 12.5 points per game and 13.5 points per game over the last two seasons. He’s also been a high-energy guy for the team. But he’s struggled to complete the transition from role player with the Trail Blazers at the start of his career to star player for the Mavericks, even though he’s now one of the highest-paid players on the team. And many Mavericks fans are calling for the team to trade him at some point this offseason.
Year: 2016 Signed with: Trail Blazers Contract: 4 years, $70 million What happened next: The salary cap went up substantially in 2016, and as a result, guys like Turner got contracts that were way higher than they should have been. Turner is a nice player for Portland to have stashed on its bench—he averaged 9.0 points and 3.2 assists last season while playing just 25 minutes per game—but $17 million is too much to pay for a guy who only excels at shooting midrange jumpers.
Year: 2016 Signed with: Lakers Contract: 4 years, $72 million What happened next: In order to keep their first-round pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, the Lakers had to lose a lot of games last season. So it’s still unclear why they went out and signed a guy like Deng who could have prevented them from accomplishing that goal. It’s even more unclear why they paid him as much money as they did, especially when you consider that they were eventually forced to put him on the bench for much of last season as they tried to tank. They have reportedly spent the last few weeks trying to figure out a way to get him off their roster as soon as possible.
Year: 2016 Signed with: Lakers Contract: 4 years, $64 million What happened next: In addition to wondering why their team signed Deng, Lakers fans were also forced to ask why the team signed Mozgov. Seriously, was this team trying to lose their first-round pick in the draft this year? At any rate, the Lakers made amends for this terrible signing recently when they dealt Mozgov to the Nets. They did have to part ways with D’Angelo Russell to do it, but it was a small price to pay to get Mozgov’s awful contract off the books.
Year: 2016 Signed with: Knicks Contract: 4 years, $72 million What happened next: The Knicks have a long and storied history when it comes to making bad free agency acquisitions. But when it’s all said and done, this could be the worst of the bunch. Noah played just 46 games for the Knicks last season and averaged just 5.0 points and 8.7 rebounds per game, and believe it or not, that was actually a significant improvement from his final season with the Bulls, which means the Knicks got more out of him than they should have expected. So why in the world did they pay him so much money last summer to come to New York? It’s a question Knicks fans will ask for years to come.
A Delaware teen sustained no serious injuries after dropping from a ride at Six Flags Great Escape Amusement Park this weekend. The 14-year-old girl was initially left “dangling” roughly 25 feet off the ground on the park's Sky Ride attraction Saturday night, CBS Newsreported.
Portions of the incident, which occurred at the Six Flags Great Escape location in New York, were captured on video by witnesses and shared to social media. In footage, the ride is seen coming to a stop as bystanders express shock at the young park-goer seen dangling. Eventually, witnesses gathered beneath the teenager and captured her when she fell.
UPDATE: Matthew Howard & daughter Leeann Winchell caught 14 yo girl who fell from ride at Six Flags Great Escape Sat. More on @WNYT @ 11p. pic.twitter.com/myWSGPz2Sv
“I have 11 kids,” Matthew Howard, who helped catch the falling teen, toldWNYT News. “All I was thinking about was what if that was one of mine.” According to reports, the ride was halted Saturday night after staff was alerted of a passenger who was “in distress.”
After dropping into the crowd, the teen was transported to nearby Albany Medical Center and treated for minor injuries. The teen's younger brother, who was also on the ride at the time of the incident, was not injured during Saturday's events but is said to be “shaken up.”
Park officials told CBS News Sunday that there did not appear to be any malfunction on the Sky Ride. Though an inspection cleared the ride as being in working order, the attraction will remain closed for the time being. “We are reviewing our internal procedures to ensure the safety and security of our guests and team members,” officials said.
Chris Paul entered the NBA the same year former commissioner David Stern implemented the controversial dress code. So the Clippers point guard has seen the style of the league change drastically since 2005 as stars like Paul and his pals Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade, and LeBron James roll up to arenas in designer duds and make international best-dressed lists.
“It's been interesting to see how things have evolved over the years and how sports and fashion have come to play a huge role,” says Paul. “I think it's opened up opportunities for the sports world and the fashion world.”
Paul, one of the most stylish players in the league, has taken advantage of one such recent opportunity to collaborate with the men's brand Five Four Club and the baller celebrated the release of a new capsule collection with a party in New York two days before the NBA Draft.
Featuring the likes of Sixers star Joel Embiid and designers Robert Geller and Richard Chai, Paul and Five Four Club founder Dee Murthy and Andres Izquieta hosted an intimate dinner at the Meatpacking District restaurant Catch that Complex was invited to. There, we talked to the trio about the capsule collection, the inspiration behind it, their favorite pieces, and, for Paul specifically, a little free agency talk sprinkled in.