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Simpson could get out of prison, collect $2.7 million from NFL
Steve DelVecchio Mar-06-2017 106 0

O.J. Simpson is eligible for parole on Oct. 1, and there is a chance the Pro Football Hall of Famer could be released from prison after serving nine years of a 33-year sentence.

Simpson, who was convicted in 2008 of 12 charges stemming from a sports memorabilia heist, was paroled on five of his charges in 2013. He will likely have a parole hearing at some point this summer, during which he will attempt to convince the board that he has kept out of trouble and been a model inmate.

Simpson was part of a group of men who stole roughly 800 items from sports memorabilia dealers Alfred Beardsley and Bruce Fromong at a Las Vegas hotel room in 2007. The crime was committed roughly 10 years after he was infamously acquitted of the murders of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown, and her friend, Ron Goldman.

If he is granted parole in October, Simpson will reportedly have a large sum of cash waiting for him. According to the Sunday Express, Simpson has accrued $2.7 million in retirement benefits from his days of playing for the Buffalo Bills and San Francisco 49ers. Though the 69-year-old still owes much of the $33.5 million he was ordered to pay when he was found civilly liable of the murders of Brown and Goldman, laws state that pension money cannot be collected by creditors.

The ESPN documentary “OJ: Made in America” did not paint Simpson in a great light, as expected. We learned some disturbing new info about the early stages of his relationship with Brown, but Simpson’s reputation is never going to be repaired anyway. He’ll certainly be pleased if he gets to serve less than one third of his sentence.

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SI Aug-13-2017 64 0
LeBron James took to Twitter Saturday to voice his displeasure with the violence and white nationalist rallying taking place in Charlottesville, Va. this weekend, and appeared to take a pointed swipe at President Donald Trump as well.

James, who has been famously outspoken on social issues in the past, expressed his sadness at the weekend’s events and made a reference to Trump’s ‘Make America Great Again’ slogan, appearing to punctuate it with a sense of frustration. The white nationalists openly and verbally aligned themselves with Trump’s campaign rhetoric, with some Charlottesville marchers yelling “Heil Trump” while also parroting antiquated, racist sentiment.

James is chief among a number of NBA players and other athletes who have spoken up against the violent, racist rhetoric after scores of white nationalists with torches marched, chanted racial slurs and attacked counter-protestors in Charlottesville on Friday night. The situation escalated and resulted in one person’s death and 19 injured after a car plowed over another group of counter-protestors. The group known as the Detroit Right Wings adopted the Detroit Red Wings’ logo as their own, which the NHL franchise also went online to condemn.

James’s Los Angeles-area home was vandalized with racist graffiti during this year’s NBA playoffs. He has been increasingly willing to speak out on social and political issues, especially related to race. He famously wore an "I Can't Breathe" shirt during warmups in 2014 to protest the NYPD killing Eric Garner, and he gave a joint speech about violence and racism with Chris Paul, Dwyane Wade and Carmelo Anthony at the 2016 ESPYS.
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The Score Aug-13-2017 56 0
Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch became the latest athlete to not stand during the national anthem ahead of Saturday's preseason game versus the Arizona Cardinals.

The Raiders star, who sat out the 2016 season and came out of retirement this spring, is the latest NFL player to protest during the anthem, joining Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins - who will continue to do so this year - and free-agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick, among others.

No other players joined Lynch on Saturday.

The protest came amid a day of violence, with a group of white nationalists storming the University of Virginia campus in Charlottesville. A vehicle drove into a group of counter-protesters, killing at least one person and injuring numerous others.
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AP Jul-31-2017 51 0
Allen Iverson did not show up for the Big3's games in Dallas, and the league says it is investigating his absence.

The former NBA MVP is the biggest star in Ice Cube's 3-on-3 league of former NBA players. Iverson signed on as a player and coach of Three's Company for the league's inaugural season.

He hasn't been playing very much - he didn't play at all in his much-hyped return to Philadelphia - and the league says in a statement it had no advance notice that Iverson wouldn't attend the game Sunday.

The league says it will make a statement once it has gathered all the facts surrounding Iverson's absence.

DerMarr Johnson, the team's co-captain, took over the coaching duties Sunday.
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Jul-25-2017 90 0
Lucky Whitehead was telling the TRUTH -- he was not the man arrested for shoplifting on June 22, this according to Prince William County officials who say the REAL perp was an imposter.

We spoke with Commonwealth's attorney, Paul Ebert, who says the case against ex-Dallas Cowboys WR Lucky Whitehead has been dropped after an internal investigation into the arrest.

Long story short ... Ebert says the man was only "verbally identified" by the arresting officer at the crime scene. The arrestee did not have I.D. on him.

The man told cops he was Lucky Whitehead and gave them Lucky's information including birthday and social security number, Ebert says.

The officers ran the information through the DMV system and believed the man they had arrested the matched the photo of "Lucky Whitehead" that was on file.

After Lucky publicly declared his innocence, claiming he wasn't even in the state of Virgnia at the time of the arrest, officers went back and reviewed surveillance video at the convenience store. Footage showed the suspect was NOT Lucky Whitehead.

Cops are now on the hunt for the man in the video.

Lucky's agent, Dave Rich, tells TMZ Sports, "Lucky is thrilled justice was served and his name was cleared. It's a shame that he came into town to do a camp for kids and he ended up getting cut by his professional football team."

The Prince William County Police Dept. has also issued a statement:

"Upon reviewing the June 22, 2017 arrest of an individual named 'Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr.', the police department is confident that the man charged with petit larceny, and who is subsequently being sought on an active warrant for failure to appear in court, is not Lucky Whitehead of the Dallas Cowboys."

"The man charged on the morning of June 22 was not in possession of identification at the time of the encounter; however, did verbally provide identifying information to officers, which included a name, date of birth, and social security number matching that of Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr."

"Officers then checked this information through the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) database. The DMV photo on file was then used to compare to the man who was in custody."

"Officers acted in good faith that, at the time, the man in custody was the same man matching the information provided. At this point, the police department is also confident in confirming that Mr. Whitehead’s identify was falsely provided to police during the investigation."

"The police department is currently seeking the identity of the man involved in the incident. Since the identifying information provided by the arrestee during the investigation was apparently false, the police department is working with the Prince William County Commonwealth Attorney’s Office to clear Mr. Whitehead from this investigation."

"The police department regrets the impact these events had on Mr. Whitehead and his family."
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Jesse Reed Jul-24-2017 65 0
Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green will reportedly be facing a lawsuit that alleges “acts of violence against a young man and woman.”

This news was broken Monday by Sabina Ghebremedhin and Stephanie Walsh of ABC News.

This won’t be the first time Green has been accused of assault. He was arrested for assault back in July 2016 after he was accused of hitting former Michigan State football player Jermaine Edmondson. Green was never charged in this case, however, after he reached a plea deal with prosecutors.

More information will certainly come out regarding this latest development. We’ll certainly pass it along when it does.
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usa today Jul-24-2017 71 0
Prosecutors have declined to file sexual assault charges against former Cowboys wide receiver Michael Irvin, due to a lack of evidence, according to the Broward County (Fla.) State Attorney’s Office.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame wide receiver was accused of sexual assault in March when a 27-year-old woman claimed that Irvin drugged and raped her on March 22 at a hotel in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. The sexual assault case was transferred from the Fort Lauderdale Police Department to the State Attorney’s Office in June.

Irvin, 51, vehemently denied the accusations, calling the woman’s claims “heinous” and “the most difficult period my family and I have ever had to endure.”

“Nothing happened, period,” Irvin said in June, via ABC. “There was no sexual contact whatsoever.”
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Landon Haaf Jul-24-2017 80 0
Just hours after news surfaced about Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Lucky Whitehead's June arrest for shoplifting, he has been cut from the team, according to a source within the organization.

Whitehead was arrested for shoplifting and petit larceny on June 22 in Manassas, Va., Prince William County arrest records show. He was arrested at the scene of the alleged theft.

A warrant is now out for his arrest after he missed a July 6 court date.

Monday was the first day of practice for the Cowboys in Oxnard, Calif., where they're holding training camp. The 25-year-old wideout told reporters after a morning walkthrough that he wasn't aware of the warrant out for his arrest.

Whitehead would have had to step away from the team during training camp for a Virginia court date Aug. 10. The Cowboys are in Oxnard until Aug. 18.

He figured to have his work cut out for him this fall independent of legal troubles. Rookie Ryan Switzer, who the Cowboys took in the fourth round of this year's draft, will likely be auditioning for the snaps Whitehead would have gotten.

Whitehead told

Last week, Whitehead made headlines after saying on social media that his dog was taken for ransom money. He and his dog were returned a day later after a bizarre string of events involving a Fort Worth rapper.
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AP Jul-17-2017 173 0
A mixed martial arts fighter has died after losing a match in Kentucky.

Gary Thomas of Hardrock MMA promotions, which put on the event, told The Courier-Journal that 37-year-old Donshay White of Radcliff, Kentucky, died Saturday after competing in a heavyweight match in Louisville against challenger Ricky Muse.

Thomas said White collapsed in the locker room after the fight and was taken to a hospital.

Thomas said officials called the match in Muse's favor two minutes into the second round.

Media report the Kentucky Boxing and Wrestling Commission said in a statement that a licensed physician and first responders treated White immediately following the fight. The commission says it is reviewing details of the incident.

Thomas said White had one previous fight on his record, which he won by knockout.
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Kurt Badenhausen Jul-12-2017 96 0
Blaze Pizza was founded five years ago with two pizza places in Southern California (Irvine and Pasadena). The concept: fast, affordable, high-quality pizza that opened up the pizza category to the lunch crowd long after burgers, salads and burritos became lunchtime staples. The idea of build-your-own pizza ready in three minutes clicked with pizza-loving Americans and franchises popped up the following year.

Blaze opens its 200th restaurant today in Mentor, Ohio. Going from two to 200 franchises in four years is the fastest start in the history of the U.S. food service business, the industry consultancy Technomic confirms.

One of the world’s most famous and marketable athletes has been along for the ride from almost Day 1. Today, LeBron James is all-in on Blaze as an investor, franchisee and paid endorser of the company. “LeBron helps us punch in terms of our brand awareness well above our weight,” says Blaze Pizza CEO Jim Mizes. Witness a recent Harris Poll where Blaze finished second among the best pizza chain brands, behind Papa John’s and ahead of Pizza Hut, which has more than 7,000 locations in the U.S.

James often uses social media to promote Blaze to his 91 million followers across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. A video of James working the counter of a Blaze Pizza as team member “Ron” last year went viral with more than two million views on YouTube.

James invested in Blaze Pizza in 2012 shortly after the first restaurants were opened by Rick and Elise Wetzel. James' financial advisor Paul Wachter of Main Street Advisors connected James with Blaze at a time when the company was looking to expand.

James later was interested in being a franchisee in South Florida in 2013 when he played for the Miami Heat. But one of Blaze’s tenants is to only partner with established franchisees who operate other brands as well. Blaze officials connected James with Larry Levy of Levy Family Partners who was also interested in the Florida market. Levy, James and Maverick Carter, James' business manager, eventually secured rights to Blaze franchises in the South Florida and Chicago markets. They have 17 franchises now (12 in Chicago and five in South Florida) with plans for more.

“Blaze has seen such resounding growth partially as a function of the strategic partnerships they have been able to form during their relatively short time on the chain restaurant scene,” says Kevin Schimpf, research analyst at restaurant consulting firm Technomic. “Whether that’s working with Lebron James or attracting leading franchisees, they have been able to ride these partnerships into massive growth.”

The growth has been astounding. Systemwide sales were $6 million in 2013 and hit $185 million last year. Mizes is targeting $285 million this year and $1.1 billion by 2022.

James doubled-down on Blaze in 2015 when he walked away from previous sponsor McDonald’s and $15 million in guaranteed money over four years as part of an endorsement contract.

James and Carter spoke recently about the split from McDonald’s in an episode of "Kneading Dough," on Uninterrupted, the digital media company founded by James and Carter. Carter serves as host of the series, which explores the financial issues pro athletes face as told by the athletes themselves.

Carter says he approached James with the idea of putting his marketing might behind Blaze instead of McDonald's because it fit his lifestyle better and potentially was a better business opportunity. More risk, but more reward. Regarding Blaze, James said, "We get to build this. If it doesn't become successful, I can only blame myself."

Mizes has big plans for Blaze. “We want to build the next enduring brand” he says. The company plans to build 100-150 restaurants a year from 2018 and onwards. International expansion is on the horizon with an announcement expected over the next couple of weeks (Blaze is currently in 32 states and Canada).

“We want to set up ourselves up so we can go public with a billion-dollar valuation,” says Mizes with a target date of the next three to five years. It would be a nice score for four-time NBA MVP James, who has talked about becoming a billionaire. He owns an estimated 10% of the company.

James ranked second in Forbes' recent look at the world's highest-paid athletes with $86.2 million between June 2016 and June 2017. In addition to his $31.2 million salary, James banked $55 million off the court from endorsements with Nike, Coca-Cola, Intel, Verizon, Kia Motors and Beats, as well as his business interests in Blaze, Uninterrupted and his production company, SpringHill Entertainment.
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