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Bob Raissman: Draymond Green and the Warriors helping turn the NBA into reality TV

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Bob Raissman: Draymond Green And The Warriors Helping Turn The Nba Into Reality Tv

For Golden State, capturing the NBA title was almost as important as settling media feuds, social media scores, or whatever you want to call them.

It wasn’t long after the Warriors won the title that Steph Curry was behind a microphone sticking it to (without naming him) ESPN NBA analyst Kendrick Perkins. In August, Perkins predicted the sharpshooter would not win another ring in the next four years.

And along the celebratory parade route, the self-anointed “new media” guru Draymond Green found his chance to get even. He was not as diplomatic as Curry. “If they ever doubted — this is live TV, right — bleep ‘em,” Green said.

More Green: “I warned y’all, so I’m just going to continue to destroy people on Twitter, as I have been, and Instagram stories.”

Such is life in the NBA, where responding to Tweets, making Instagram deposits, amplifies the art of trash talking. Cats like Green, Curry, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant and a whole lot of other guys are more media personalities than one-dimensional, hardcore, NBA players.

Green even has a seat waiting for him on TNT’s NBA coverage when he retires. On the surface, this all looks good for the NBA. The off-court drama provides plenty of material — even when school is not in session.

This ”gossipy” dimension should bring more casual fans inside the NBA’s big tent. Do the “reality show” elements of the league, and the way that is covered, have a substantial positive impact on overall viewership of the NBA’s postseason events where the big moo-la-dee is made? Or does it turn “fans” off?

That equation is hard to quantify. For what it’s worth, total average viewership for the 2022 Finals did not measure up to the 15 million average viewership for the pre-pandemic 2019 Finals. The viewership numbers for the 2022 Finals didn’t blow anyone out of the water.

Legions of eyeballs follow the league through highlight clips on the internet and get news (some of it directly from players) on social media. For some, tuning in for a full three-hour tilt is not exactly must-see TV. It’s not necessary to invest a hefty block of time to be entertained or find out what’s happening.

Platforms benefitting the most from the NBA soap opera are debate shows like “First Take” (ESPN), “Undisputed” (FS1), Valley of the Stupid offerings and podcasts that talk basketball.

Gasbags are feasting on the latest chapter in the Nets-Irving-Durant saga, which should be made into a docu-drama. The story can easily be followed through the words, or lack thereof, delivered by Durant.

The same Durant, who unlike the scribes assigned to cover HIS coverage of the story, has a personal interest in the situation.

It’s confusing. Yet very NBAish, right?

BELTRAN’S BOOTH STUMBLES

Carlos Beltran’s struggles at the microphone continued during Game 1of the Astros series.

Beltran, performing before an average of 456,000 viewers Thursday night on YES, made obvious points, delivered in a nearly monotone style. And he often just verbally rubber-stamped the analysis offered by his YES colleague David Cone. Hiring Beltran was a good idea. His reputation in baseball as an excellent communicator, a manager-in-waiting, resulted in high expectations.

And considering how he was scapegoated in the Astros cheating scandal, Beltran deserved a platform that would re-connect him with the game.

From a broadcasting perspective, Beltran looked good on paper. But how long can YES president of production/programming John J. Filippelli, wait for Beltran to meet those expectations before shuffling the deck? After all, not many baseball analysts become overnight sensations. It sometimes takes a hefty amount of game repetitions before there is a break-through.

Still, there could be an interim step for Beltran if he continues to stumble. He could be moved to YES’ Yankees studio. The controlled environment might loosen him up. The atmosphere might help him relax. That’s something he needs to do.

RATING THE REPLACEMENTS

The Yankees, and their WFAN radio partners, offered up two distinctly different styles in the voices they used to sit in John (Pa Pinstripe) Sterling’s seat last week, while Pa was “enjoying” his forced exile.

For those who like audio dynamite, there was Rickie Ricardo, the voice of Bombers Spanish radiocasts. Ricardo is high energy and flamboyant. You will not fall asleep under his watch. While he likes to cut the pie, he also pays attention to little things like actually letting listeners know where the defense is positioned. Fortunately, he didn’t have a HR call for every player. And Sterling’s “the Yankees win!” call was replaced by “What does it smell like folks? It smells like Vic-Tor-Y.”

On the other side of the mountain sat Justin Shackil who, among other things, is the Yankees digital reporter. A good listen, Shackil stuck to nuts and bolts. And he didn’t rent Sterling’s pom-poms while working the Toronto series. Shackil painted an effective, precise word picture. Most importantly, Shackil is likeable.

If we were forced to declare a winner here, it would be Suzyn (Ma Pinstripe) Waldman. She didn’t have to clean up any messes.

NO TAKE TV

With CJ McCollum returning to the “First Take” panel last week, Stephen A. Smith found it necessary to deliver a preamble to the NBA Players Assn. prez’s appearance.

”We know there are things you can’t say,” SAS proclaimed, providing instant cover for McCollum.

Smith was right.

The subject was Kyrie Irving, specifically how his propensity for missing games could expand into a collective bargaining subject at the negotiating table? When McCollum was asked to answer that question, he put on his tap-dancing shoes. He rambled on until Kendrick Perkins finally answered the question for him.

Again, what is the purpose of having, and paying, McCollum for his educated opinions if he’s going to verbally bob-and-weave on the topic of contract negotiations? If the “First Take” crew is going to accept McCollum’s pablum, it might has well put an owner on the show so we can watch two people say nothing about NBA contract negotiations.

AROUND THE DIAL

For reasons known only to him, WFAN’s Gregg Giannotti thought it was a great idea to take issue with SXM’s Christopher (Mad Dog) Russo revealing his First Take salary ($10,000 per appearance for 40 appearances) during an interview with Howard Stern. Giannotti thought ESPN suits would not be thrilled with Russo talking personal finances. We’re sure Doggie is shaking in his boots. … The way SNY’s Gary Cohen was complaining last Saturday, viewers would have thought he was calling Marlins-Mets from a booth in Antarctica. Cohen brought new meaning to the word “chilling.”… Astros-Yankees on YES Thursday night peaked at 696,000 total viewers from 10:15 to 10:30 p.m. Yankees game viewership is up 15% over last season. Guess pinstriped eyeballs have yet to become tired of winning.

* * *

DUDE OF THE WEEK: VANN McELROY

Never forgetting his deep roots in Uvalde, Texas, McElroy, the former Raiders star, reached out to his former team to support the devastated community. That connection to the Raiders paid off. Owner Mark Davis authorized a $1 million donation for a city reeling from an unspeakable tragedy.

DWEEB OF THE WEEK: RON DeSANTIS

When the Florida Governor vetoes legislation over funding of a sports facility for a local area team, the Tampa Bay Rays, based on his interpretation of the team’s socially-minded initiative on gun control, it’s time to call out his brazen conduct. So, there.

DOUBLE TALK

What Eduardo Escobar said: “I think saying, ‘give me a couple of days off’ is essentially giving up.”

What Eduardo Escobar meant to say: “If I’m not hitting, I’m not playing.”

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British man in court for threatening to ‘kill the Queen’ with crossbow

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British Man In Court For Threatening To 'Kill The Queen' With Crossbow

LONDON — A man who entered the grounds of Windsor Castle armed with a crossbow told police he wanted to “kill the Queen”, prosecutors told a hearing on Wednesday.

Jaswant Singh Chail, 20, is charged under the Treason Act with intending “to injure the person of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II or to alarm her Majesty”. He was also charged with death threats and possession of an offensive weapon.

Chail was arrested at the royal residence in west London on Christmas Day 2021, when the Queen was staying there.

Prosecutors allege the former supermarket worker from Southampton, southern England, wore a balaclava and mask and carried a loaded crossbow without the safety catch.

They say he told a policeman “I’m here to kill the queen”, before being handcuffed and arrested.

Prosecutor Kathryn Selby said the Supersonic X-Bow weapon allegedly carried by Chail had the potential to cause “serious or fatal injury”.

Prosecution lawyers argue Chail wanted revenge on the British establishment for his treatment of Indians and sent a video to around 20 people claiming he was going to murder the Queen.

To be closer to the royal family, he had tried to join the British army and the Ministry of Defense police, according to prosecutors.

Chail appeared remotely for Wednesday’s hearing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London from Broadmoor, a high security psychiatric hospital.

He was not asked to enter a plea and was held until his next court appearance on September 14.

The allegations against him are not being treated as a “terrorism offence”, Selby said.

Charges under the Treason Act 1842 are rare. In 1981, Marcus Sarjeant was charged under the law after shooting the Queen blank as she rode a horse in the Trooping the Color parade in London. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to five years in prison.

The last person to be convicted under the separate and more serious Treason Act of 1351 was William Joyce, a World War II Nazi propaganda broadcaster known as Lord Haw-Haw. He was hanged for high treason in 1946.

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Yoán Moncada comes through again as the Chicago White Sox rally to beat the Houston Astros 4-3: ‘Huge series against a great team’

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Yoán Moncada Comes Through Again As The Chicago White Sox Rally To Beat The Houston Astros 4-3: ‘Huge Series Against A Great Team’

Yoán Moncada stepped out of the box after time was called in the eighth inning against the Houston Astros.

Tuesday’s game at Guaranteed Rate Field was tied and the go-ahead run was in scoring position.

The Chicago White Sox third baseman had been in a similar situation before. One night earlier, to be exact.

“I went there just trying to make contact with the ball, trying to have a good pitch to swing at and to have contact,” Moncada said through an interpreter.

For the second consecutive game, Moncada came through with a single to center. Pinch runner Adam Engel scored from third to give the Sox the lead in a 4-3 victory in front of 23,476.

“To be able to come through in those situations is special,” Moncada said. “Those are the situations where the game is on the line, and being able to produce there definitely makes you feel good.”

The Sox pulled off an impressive comeback win against the reigning American League champions for the second straight night to extend their winning streak to five. They remain tied for second in the AL Central with the Minnesota Twins, but both teams moved within one game of the first-place Cleveland Guardians.

The Sox won 4-2 on Monday as Moncada broke a 2-all tie with a two-out, two-run single to center in the eighth on the first pitch of his at-bat against Rafael Montero.

Tuesday, he took a ball against Héctor Neris and, after the brief pause, hit the second pitch into center to bring home Engel.

“That brings out the best in him,” Sox manager Tony La Russa said. “He’s great in that situation.”

Tuesday’s game began with the buzz of two AL Cy Young Award candidates starting in the Sox’s Dylan Cease and the Astros’ Justin Verlander.

Cease allowed three runs on six hits with four strikeouts and three walks in five innings.

“It wasn’t my sharpest outing, but it was close enough to keep us in it and then everyone else picked me up,” Cease said.

It’s the first time he allowed at least two earned runs in a start since May 24, when he gave up seven against the Boston Red Sox. Tuesday’s start ended a record stretch of 14 in a row in which he allowed one earned run or none.

“He wasn’t sharp, but if he doesn’t compete like he did, the comeback is not possible against Verlander,” La Russa said. “It’s a different kind of pat on the back. Five innings, he gutted it out.”

The Sox trailed 3-1 in the seventh when Gavin Sheets pinch-hit for Lenyn Sosa with runners on first and second and one out.

Sheets smacked a double to right. Josh Harrison and Seby Zavala scored to tie the game.

Sheets said he was thinking “get (Verlander) in the zone.”

“The main thing, first and second I want to get the ball in the air,” Sheets said. “I didn’t want to hit something on the ground and get a double play. I figured that was his main goal right there to get me on the ground. He went to the breaking ball and my main thought was get something in the air and get something in the strike zone.

“I was able to do that and I was just hoping Seby was going to score.”

Verlander allowed three runs on eight hits with four strikeouts and a walk in seven innings.

The Sox got to the Astros bullpen again, and Liam Hendriks pitched a perfect ninth for his fourth save in five games and his 27th of the season.

Sheets said the last couple of victories show the Sox have “a lot of fight.”

“We are a good team, that’s the biggest thing,” he said. “Everybody in here believes and knows it. We can feel the crowd support. We can feel the energy and it’s exciting.”

The Sox are a season-high five games over .500 and playing some of their best baseball at a crucial time.

“Every win is important,” Sheets said. “But it’s the time of the season where it’s the push, the sprint. The season is a marathon, but at this point it’s a sprint to the finals, to the playoffs. We are going to do everything we can.

“This is a huge series against a great team. We are going to focus one day at a time.”

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Tracy Hancock, Colorado native and Olympic wrestler, among WWE’s latest recruiting classes

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Tracy Hancock, Colorado Native And Olympic Wrestler, Among Wwe'S Latest Recruiting Classes

A Colorado native and member of the US Olympic wrestling team is looking to translate his talents into the squared circle.

Tracy Hancock, who competed in the men’s Greco-Roman event in the 97-kilogram weight class in Tokyo, is among 17 aspiring wrestling rookies announced Tuesday who will join the WWE Performance Center.

RELATED: G’Angelo Hancock’s meteoric rise to stardom in Greco-Roman wrestling makes the Fountain native a gold medal contender at the Tokyo Olympics.

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UK to compensate people infected through tainted blood transfusions

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Uk To Compensate People Infected Through Tainted Blood Transfusions

Around 2,400 people have died after being infected with tainted blood. (Representative)

London:

Thousands of people in Britain infected with HIV and hepatitis C through tainted blood transfusions will receive compensation decades after the scandal, the British government announced on Wednesday.

The £100,000 ($121,000) payment to each victim is interim after Brian Langstaff, the chairman of a public inquiry into the long-running scandal, last month recommended making immediate payments before waiting conclusion of an ongoing investigation.

The former High Court judge said ‘the moral justification for compensation is beyond doubt’.

The government said tax-free payments to survivors of the scandal and bereaved partners among the thousands believed to have died from tainted blood would be made by the end of October.

Thousands of people with hemophilia contracted hepatitis C and HIV after receiving blood transfusions, mostly from the United States, through the state’s National Health Service (NHS) in the 1970s. 1980 and 1990.

Due to a shortage of blood products in Britain, the NHS purchased much of its stock from US suppliers whose donors, including prisoners and other groups at high risk of infection, had been paid for their blood.

An estimated 2,400 patients died after being infected with contaminated blood products in the 1970s and 1980s.

A previous inquiry concluded in 2009 found ministers should have acted sooner to make Britain’s blood supplies more self-sufficient to reduce reliance on imports.

He also called for compensation for those affected.

A 2017 High Court ruling allowed victims and their families to seek damages through the UK court system.

In a statement, Prime Minister Boris Johnson acknowledged that “nothing can compensate for the pain and suffering endured by those affected by this tragic injustice”.

But he added that the government was ‘taking action to give rights to victims and those who have tragically lost their partners by ensuring they receive these interim payments as soon as possible’.

However, campaigners said the announcement failed to acknowledge most of the family members affected by the scandal, who will be deprived of this round of interim payments.

When the public inquiry concludes next year, it is expected to make final recommendations on compensation for this wider group of people, including bereaved parents and children of victims.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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Pennsylvania hummingbird rattles the doorbell camera

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Pennsylvania Hummingbird Rattles The Doorbell Camera

A Pennsylvania hummingbird made a surprise appearance on a doorbell camera. The curious bird can be seen buzzing in the frame and then heading straight for the camera (watch the video above). The camera’s microphone captured the rapid buzz of the bird’s wings. WGAL viewer Kelly Kauffman shared the video with WGAL on uLocal, saying the bird is “one of the cutest visitors I’ve had on my doorstep.” We have to agree! Join Our Facebook GroupuLocal Central Pennsylvania is a place where you can enjoy compelling and interesting photography and video of the Susquehanna Valley. Whether you want to share your photos and videos or just enjoy some of the amazing photographs your friends and neighbors share, our new Facebook group is a place to breathe and experience the unique place where we live and work. Click through the slideshow below below to enjoy more beautiful uLocal photography. If you’re not on Facebook, you can also share photos with us via uLocal here.

A Pennsylvania hummingbird made a surprise appearance on a doorbell camera.

The curious bird can be seen buzzing in the frame and then heading straight for the camera (watch the video above). The camera’s microphone captured the vivid buzz of the bird’s wings.

WGAL viewer Kelly Kauffman shared the video with WGAL on uLocal, saying the bird is “one of the cutest visitors I’ve had on my doorstep.”

We have to agree!

Join our Facebook group

uLocal Central Pennsylvania is a place where you can enjoy captivating and interesting photography and video of the Susquehanna Valley.

Whether you want to share your photos and videos or just enjoy the incredible photographs your friends and neighbors share, our new Facebook group is a place to breathe and experience the unique place where we live and work.

Click through the slideshow below to enjoy more beautiful uLocal photographs.

If you’re not on Facebook, you can also share photos with us via uLocal here.

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China’s housing crisis continues to brew in Beijing’s weak tea

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China'S Housing Crisis Continues To Brew In Beijing'S Weak Tea

China’s housing crisis has already eaten away at the country’s most notorious developers, especially Evergrande– which has defaulted on several bonds and is struggling to complete apartments for buyers who have already paid.

But the sales slump now threatens to drag down the industry’s good boys as well. Stocks and bonds of Chinese property developers rallied on Tuesday following media reports that the government will underwrite new bond issues from some healthier private developers. Shares of the companies mentioned surged: longfor 12% and country garden 9%.

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