Isaiah Thomas-Paul Pierce Drama; Gilbert Arenas Punched; Aaron Afflalo Headlocked | Out of Bounds

On today’s episode of #OutofBounds, Gil tells the story of the time he tried to break up a fight between Orlando Magic teammates and ended up being the only person who got punched. With the Carolina Panthers still in search of a new owner, many people have showed interest, including celebs Dale Earnhardt Jr., Diddy, and Steph Curry. The crew weighs in on who they think would be the best fit and who will actually be the next owner. Paul Pierce dead set against Isaiah Thomas getting a tribute video on the same night as his Boston Celtics jersey-retiring. While Adam and Pierce believe IT can get at least a 30-second video, Gil thinks Pierce should have a full-on Pierce-Land tribute like Kobe. One thing they all agree on is that Kid Rock should not headline the NHL All-Star Game. 

More from Complex

LeBron James Calls Out Trump’s Racism During MLK Day Press Conference

LeBron James honored Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy before the Cleveland Cavaliers' match against the Golden State Warriors on MLK Day. He fit in a not-so-subtle dig at Donald Trump, too.

“He had a vision and he took a bullet for all of us. For us to stand here even though we're trying to be divided right now by somebody,” James said during a pre-game press conference. “Today is a great day for people to realize how America was built and how we all have to stand united in order to be one. Especially as Americans because we believe, we all know and we all believe, this is the greatest country in the world.” 

While the basketball star didn't directly mention Trump's name, he makes it very clear who he's referring to. He continued:

“The state of racism will never die, but what we can not do is allow it to conquer us as people. We can't allow it to divide us. The guy in control has given people and racism, and negative racism, an opportunity to be out and outspoken without fear. And that's the fearful thing for us because it's with you, and it's around every day. But he's allowed people to come out and just feel confident about doing negative things. We can't allow that to stop us from continuing to be together and preach the right word of living and loving and laughing and things of that nature. Because would we want to live anywhere else? I don't think so. We love this place.”

This isn't the first time James has called out Trump's racist and oppressive views. Last August, he tweeted Trump “just made [hate] fashionable again” in response to his reactions toward the Charlottesville protests. That was followed by the now-famous “U bum” moment after Trump targeted Steph Curry and revoked his invitation to the White House.

Watch James' reflection on Martin Luther King Jr. as well as his comments on Trump below:

More from Complex

Steph Curry Is ‘Willing to Do What It Takes’ to Be a Carolina Panthers Owner

Golden State Warriors star Steph Curry is still very interested in the possibility of becoming a part owner of the Carolina Panthers. Curry spoke with reporters on Monday about the strides he's made towards turning that dream into a reality. “It’s a pretty interesting opportunity,” he said. “I've had conversations with plenty of people about the right way to go about it and kind of the different approaches I could personally take. Obviously I have a day job but I’ve got people that are plugged in and trying to see how to make that happen.”

Following the announcement from former Panthers owner Jerry Richardson last month that he would be putting the team up for sale in light of the NFL launching an investigation into sexual misconduct allegations made against him, Diddy posted a tweet expressing his interest in become the franchise's next owner.

Steph responded to the tweet, saying that he wants in on Diddy's ownership group. 

But was Curry really serious about joining the ownership team making a bid for the franchise he has been a fan of since he was a kid? If Steph declaring that he's “willing to do what it takes to make that happen” isn't direct enough, we don't know what more he can say. Check out his remarks in the video below. 

More from Complex

Why 2017 Was the Year of LaVar Ball

Hate him or love him, you couldn't escape LaVar Ball in 2017. He may have seemed like the ultimate Coach Dad with the way he hyped Lonzo Ball as being better than Steph Curry, but what started out as boasting from Papa Ball turned into LaVar's (successful) campaign to get Lonzo into the NBA.

He talked a lot of shit, and never found a camera he wouldn't speak in front of, but LaVar found a way to completely dominate the news cycle, whether it was about his family (which landed a Facebook reality series), the ZO2s (which finally did start shipping), or why he ended up putting LiAngelo and LaMelo to work in Lithuania.

Here's why, hated or not, LaVar Ball dominated the conversation in 2017.

More from Complex

Watch Klay Thompson Do the Most Random Interview Ever While Walking Around NYC

After playing against the Nets in Brooklyn on Sunday night, the Warriors had an off day on Monday. And that gave a couple of Golden State stars the opportunity to fulfill some media obligations in New York City.

Steph Curry stopped by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on Monday night, and during his appearance on the show, he spoke about everything from serving as a taste-tester for his wife Ayesha at home to having his own line of Under Armour sneakers. He also made a well-timed joke about Fallon’s decision to take up “smoking” as a hobby while he was on the show. You can check out Curry’s appearance on The Tonight Show (“smoking” joke at the 1:20 mark) below.

But that was far from the most newsworthy media appearance made by a member of the Warriors on Monday. Because while Curry was taping his Tonight Show segment, his teammate Klay Thompson was off taking part in a media appearance of his own, and it involved a very important topic: Scaffolding. Yes, scaffolding.

If you’ve ever walked around New York City, you know that scaffolding is literally everywhere. It’s hard to walk for more than a block without having to walk under it. And somehow, Fox 5 in NYC was lucky enough to land a man on the street interview with Thompson, who talked about his approach to scaffolding as he made his way around the Big Apple on Monday. You can check out a portion of the interview below.

“I usually observe if the piping and stuff is new,” Thompson, who was identified as “NBA Player” by Fox 5, said. “Sometimes, you know, if it’s something that looks like it’s been there awhile, I kind of try to avoid that.”

Insightful!

If this seems like the most random interview you’ve ever seen an NBA player do, you’re not alone. This clip of Thompson talking scaffolding has been making the rounds on social media, and it’s been getting quite a reaction out there.

Can we request more clips of Thompson talking to local news people in every city he visits? The Warriors travel to Oklahoma City to take on the Thunder on Wednesday night. Good luck topping this, OKC.

More from Complex

Steph Curry Says It’s ‘Very Likely’ Warriors Will Play Celtics, Not Cavaliers, in NBA Finals

Kyrie Irving and the Celtics are on an absolute tear right now. Since losing their first two games of the season—and losing their big-name free agency acquisition Gordon Hayward to a devastating leg injury—Boston has reeled off 14 wins in a row, including a come-from-behind win over the Warriors on Thursday night. They have been playing well on both ends of the court, despite short-term injuries to Irving and Al Horford, and they have looked like the title contender people thought they could be heading into this season.

But will they actually be able to beat LeBron James and the Cavaliers in the playoffs this season to advance to the NBA Finals? That obviously remains to be seen. But after Golden State went down to Boston on Thursday, Steph Curry made a prediction of sorts when he was asked if he thought his team might end up playing against the Celtics, not the Cavaliers, in the NBA Finals this year after three consecutive Finals matchups against Cleveland. And he said it’s looking “very likely” that the road to an NBA championship could come through Boston rather than Cleveland.

“Very, very likely, right?” Curry said. “They’re playing the best right now in the East. Obviously, until they beat Cleveland, who has done it three years in a row, we’ll see. I hear the weather’s great [in Boston] in June, so we’ll see.”

Before anyone in Boston gets too excited about what Curry said, it’s important to remember that there’s still a ton of basketball to be played between now and June. As Celtics fans have already learned on several occasions this season, injuries happen, and those injuries could play a role in how far Boston is able to advance in the postseason. There are also inevitably going to be trades that take place between now and February that could impact the outcome of the Eastern Conference Playoffs and the NBA Playoffs as a whole.

But at least for now, the idea of a Warriors/Celtics matchup in the Finals doesn’t seem all that crazy, given how well both teams have played so far this season. And if Thursday night was any indication, it could end up being one hell of a series if those two teams face off in the Finals at the end of it all.

More from Complex

Mia Khalifa and Gilbert Arenas Discuss Why Kyrie SZN Is Finally Upon Us on ‘Out of Bounds’

On today’s Out of Bounds, Gilbert, Mia, Pierce, and Adam chat about the past week’s NBA, NFL, and college football standings and U of Miami’s Bowl prospects. The crew also run through Steph Curry’s mouthguard-related first ejection, coach firings, why the Cleveland Browns are trash, and Gabrielle Union’s discussion of tossing salads in her life prior to Dwyane Wade.

More from Complex

Mia Khalifa Just Trolled Steph Curry Over His Foot Fetish

Here’s how Mia Khalifa responded to learning about Steph Curry’s foot fetish.

Memo Reminds NBA Players Must Stand During National Anthem, Outlines Ways Players Can Effect Change

NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum sent out a memo to all 30 teams Friday instructing players and coaches to stand during the national anthem. Although there was no mention of punishment should players choose to kneel, he expressed that the league has a rule in place disallowing players from sitting or kneeling during the anthem. 

In the memo, obtained by Complex Sports, Tatum asked that teams use their season openers “to demonstrate your commitment to the NBA’s core values of equality, diversity, inclusion and serve as a unifying force in the community.” The memo continued: 

If you have not done so already, we suggest organizing discussions between players, coaches, general managers and ownership to hear the players’ perspectives.

One approach would be for team leadership to review existing team and league initiatives and encourage players to share their thoughts and ideas about them. Following those conversations, teams could develop plans prior to the start of the regular season for initiatives that players and senior leadership could participate in, such as:

  • Hosting Community Conversations with youth, parents, community leaders and law enforcement about the challenges we face and our shared responsibility to create positive change.
  • Creating “Building Bridges Through Basketball” programs that use the game of basketball to bring people together and deepen important bonds of trust and respect between young people, mentors, community leaders, law enforcement and other first responders.
  • Highlighting the importance of mentoring with the goal of adding 50,000 new mentors to support young people through our PSA campaign.
  • Engaging thought leaders and partners.  A variety of experts, speakers and partner organizations are available to players and teams as you continue these conversations and develop programming.
  • Establishing new and/or enhancing ongoing team initiatives and partnerships in the areas of criminal justice reform, economic empowerment and civic engagement.

Teams are urged to show videos prior to tip-off in their efforts to exemplify unity. It was also recommended that a player or coach address fans directly if a message is to be conveyed. 

Earlier this month, NFL players across the country took a knee during the anthem in protest of police brutality and in honor of Colin Kaepernick's decision to spearhead the gesture. This collective demonstration roused a response from the president, causing something of a sociopolitical tidal wave. NBA players Lebron James and Steph Curry both spoke out in support of NFL players’ decision to take a knee, and publicly criticized Donald Trump for claiming they should be fired for doing so. 

More likely than not, individual NBA players or entire teams are going to express their solidarity for the Black Lives Matter movement (something their counterparts in the WNBA have been at the forefront of), whether that be in the form of kneeling during the anthem or not. And it's not because they don't have respect for the NBA or the white men who run it. It's because they should have the right to take a stand against the bigotry and racism that continues to plague this country. 

More from Complex

You Buying This Explanation for Why Colin Kaepernick Wasn’t on That Controversial SI Cover?

Earlier this week, Sports Illustrated released one of the most controversial covers they’ve put out in a long time, even though they probably didn’t necessarily think that it would be all that controversial when they were planning it. As a reaction to all of the protests that took place last weekend after Donald Trump came out and criticized NFL players for taking a knee during the national anthem prior to games, SI put together a cover with the title, “A NATION DIVIDED, SPORTS UNITED.” It featured LeBron James, Steph Curry, Roger Goodell, Steve Kerr, Michael Bennett, and Candace Parker on it, among others.

As soon as the SI cover started circulating on social media, the first question most people had was: “WTF is Roger Goodell doing on it?” While Goodell did release a statement and—sort of—distance himself and the NFL from Trump’s anti-protest comments, he hasn’t exactly gone out of his way to support the players who have protested racial injustices and police brutality over the last year. And lest you forget, he’s kept quiet with regards to the petition that a handful of players sent him over the summer asking for the NFL to devote an entire month to social activism. So his inclusion on the SI cover was puzzling at best and downright disrespectful at worst in the eyes of many.

It also didn’t take very long for people to start asking another question once they got a glance at the cover: “Where is Colin Kaepernick?” Kaepernick is obviously the reason that this SI cover even exists in the first place. If he doesn’t take a knee during the national anthem before a preseason game last season, and if he doesn’t continue to take a knee during the national anthem before every regular-season game last year, and if he doesn’t influence other players to start taking a knee during the national anthem before games, and if he doesn’t get blackballed by the NFL in the offseason for igniting the entire #TakeAKnee movement, there is no reason for SI to do a “NATION DIVIDED, SPORTS UNITED” cover. So—where is Colin Kaepernick?

A lot of people asked this question:

Hell, even Curry, who was featured front and center on the SI cover, thought it was completely idiotic for SI to run a cover like this without giving a nod to the guy who is responsible for it existing. He went off on the cover on Wednesday and accused SI of trying to capitalize on the moment rather than actually doing something impactful for the culture.

“That was terrible,” he said. “Just kind of capitalizing on the hoopla and the media and all that nonsense. The real people that understand exactly what’s been going on and who’s really been active and vocal and truly making a difference, if you don’t have Kaepernick front and center on that, something’s wrong. It’s kind of hard to see how certain narratives take place, being prisoners of the moment.”

On Thursday, SI attempted to cover its ass by having Executive Editor Steve Cannella put together a video to explain the magazine’s original intention when they first conceived the cover. And it’s a great video—if you’re a fan of hearing someone use a bunch of buzz words that sound important. You can hear all about the “enduring message” of unity that SI was trying to get across with their cover below or here.

But what about the omission of Kaepernick? Again: Where was he? Cannella touched on that, too, and in doing so, he tried to sell everyone on the idea that Kaepernick was on the cover, even if he wasn’t actually there in the physical form.

“In some ways, even though his picture is not there, Colin Kaepernick is there; I think we all know that,” he said. “Colin Kaepernick—for lack of a better word—was looming over everything that happened this past weekend, and looms over many of the issues in society right now.”

Cannella continued by saying that SI’s intention wasn’t to ignore Kaepernick (for the record, he was mentioned at length in the accompanying cover story). Rather, the magazine wanted to shine light on some of the other professional athletes who stepped up in his absence last weekend—since, again, he has essentially been blackballed by the NFL—and continued to carry out his message.

“I thought what we were trying to capture with this cover was the way new voices emerged this weekend,” he said.

And later, he once again tried to push the idea that Kaepernick was a part of the cover even though, well, he wasn’t.

Colin Kaepernick is on that cover,” Cannella said. “Even if his face and his name aren’t there, we all know who stands behind this movement. We all know who got it started. Colin Kaepernick has many more brothers than he did a week ago.”

The problem with all of this is that by not including Kaepernick on the cover, SI—and those who are in favor of the message SI presented with its cover—are taking the focus away from what Kaepernick was protesting last season and instead turning it into a completely different issue. The “united” approach that SI took when it put its cover together is now leading to protests that really aren’t protests at all.

Kaepernick made it very clear why he was protesting shortly after his first protest went public.

“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses Black people and people of color,” he said. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder…I have to stand up for people that are oppressed.”

So by pushing Kaepernick out of the spotlight—or in this case, off of the SI cover—you’re also pushing the message that he fought so hard to get out there last season out of the spotlight, too. And you’re replacing it with a different message that is overshadowing the one that should be front and center right now. Just like Kaepernick should be front and center on that SI cover.

More from Complex