Adidas Offers James Harden $200 Million Contract

Adidas Offers Harden $200 Million (ESPN)

Darren Rovel of ESPN has reported that Adidas offers $200 million over 13 years to the Houston Rockets James Harden.  Harden’s contract with Nike recently expired, and they have until the end of the week to match the offer.  This is reminiscent of last year when Under Armour made a bid on Kevin Durant.

Nike matched the offer for Durant, and he got hurt, so will they be more cautious.  Even though the contract isn’t as valuable as Kevin Durant’s, it requires an even bigger leap of faith.  Harden has never had a signature shoe, so no one knows how many shoes he can sell.

Adidas has already fallen behind Under Armour, so they have to do something.  Harden has crafted his own image with ‘the beard’, so they have something to work with.  But they already have Dwight Howard on the Rockets.  This is going to be interesting however it all plays out.

Wrestling Legend Rowdy Roddy Piper Dead At 61

Rowdy Roddy Piper – WWE HOF Speech

The wrestling world lost an icon with the death of Rowdy Roddy Piper, who was 61.  When the WWE business really took off, it was Hulk Hogan starring as the hero and Roddy Piper starred as the villain.  Piper was somewhat over shadowed by Hogan’s popularity, but he was a superstar in his own right.  Piper is a cultural icon that is still influential today.

Even though he is one of the greatest wrestlers of all time, there was more to him than just inside the ring.  He was an accomplished bag pipe player, an actor, and one of the biggest personalities ever.  He starred in the film, “They Live,” which brought up the idea of a world-wide conspiracy over 25 years ago, and is still popular today.  He has inspired people from all walks of life, and he will missed.

 

10 Most Valuable Sneakers 2015 (Quarter 2)

 

Most Valuable Sneakers 2015 (Quarter 2)

(click on shoe name link to purchase)

1.   Air Jordan 10 Retro Drake OVO – Being in the new with the Meek Mill beef, it is fitting that Drake is in the top spot.  The Drake retro Jordan’s were released in April 2015 at a OVO pop-up store in Los Angeles.  The shoes were a very limited release, but those who were lucky enough to get a pair made a great investment.  The shoe retailed for $225, but has got as much as $4,050 on the resell market.  With that kind of demand it is no wonder that a limited number of black and white colorways will be released later this year.

2.   Adidas 350 Yeezy Boost – Kanye West has backed up his talk with his first project with Adidas.  The move from Nike hasn’t hurt ‘Ye at all.  The Adidas 350 Yeezy Boost retailed for $200, but has sold for $844 for the resell market. The new black colorway will be released August 22nd and select retailers so stay tuned.

3.   Air Jordan 1 Retro Dover Street Market – Dover Street Market is a multilevel fashion/concept store by Japanese designer Rei Kamakubo located in New York, Tokyo, London.  So this is more than a sneaker because of who designed it, this is fashion.  The shoe retailed in April for $185 and has sold for as much as $650 on the resell market

4.   Nike Sock Dart Fragment Black – Fragment Design is an imprint led by Japanese designer Hiroshi Fujiwara.  The Nike Sock Dart Fragment Black debuted in April and retailed for $169 while it is selling as high as $485 on the resell market.

5.   Air Jordan 1 Retro Shattered Backboard – Inspired by when Michael Jordan shattered the backboard when playing an exhibition in Italy.  The show was released June 27, 2015, and retailed for $160.  It is currently going for as much as $482 on the resell market

6.   Air Jordan 1 Retro Chicago 2015  – The return of the shoe that started it all in the original colorways, but constructed with new premium materials.  The shoe dropped on may 30, 2015 and retailed for $160.  It has sold for as much as $444 on the resell market.

7.   Under Armour Curry One MVP – Under Armour is becoming a player in the sneaker game.  UA honored Curry with a special limited release to commemorate his MVP award, and it worked as they hoped.  By limiting the release, it increased the shoes value on the resell market.  The shoe retailed for $120, but is selling for as much as $373 on the resell market.

8.   Asics Gel-Lyte III AFEW-KOI  – A collaboration with Asics and Germany’s afew  sneaker shop for the 25th anniversary of the sillohette.  The colorays were inspired by koi fish.  The shoe was released on May 30, 2015, and retailed for $180, while it has sold as high as $369 on the resell market

9.   Air Jordan 7 Retro Cigar – Paying homage to the second of Jordan’s 6 rings the ‘Cigar’ features red with white and gold accents, an inner lining, and gum rubber outsole.  The shoe released on June 20, 2015, and retailed for $250 .nd It has sold on the resell market for as much as $365

10. Air Jordan 7 Retro Champagne – Paying homage to the second of Jordan’s 6 rings, the ‘Champagne’ is white based and helped by helped by black and gold with a champagne pop graphic along the insoles.  The shoe was released on June 20, 2015.  It retailed for $250 and has sold for up to $344 on the resell market.

2016 Brazil Olympics – Athletes Will Compete in Sewage Water

2016 Brazil Olympics Filthy Water

Water pollution is a common thing in Brazil, but the country promised a change for the upcoming 2016 Brazil Olympics.  About a year away from the games, and there are reports that the water has dangerously high levels of virus and bacteria in Olympic and Paralympic venues.  It is reported that in some tests the water measures 1.7 million times the level that would be considered hazardous on a Southern California beach.

Ironically the story hasn’t caught on in the United States.  It is ironic considering the big deal that was made about Sepp Blatter and his corruption in a sport that Americans typically doesn’t support.  The Brazil World Cup had its issues, so this was predictable.  But there is no money in Olympic reform, so it isn’t a big deal.  The Games must go on, no matter what.

 

 

Converse Chuck Taylor All Star II

Converse Chuck Taylor All Star II

It has been a long time coming, but Converse updated their iconic shoe for the first time in 98 years with the release of the Converse Chuck Taylor All Star II.  Check Taylor’s are a part of American culture, so the company was reluctant to change anything.  Obviously the design is timeless, but with the advances in technology it was about time that they were made more comfortable.

The changes are all on the inside with the addition of the Nike Lunarlon sock liner and perforated microsuede liner, a foam padded collar, and a tongue that never needs straightening.  For those purists the original version will still be available as well at converse.com

 

 

Tom Brady Suspension Upheld…NFL Better Be Ready for War

Tom Brady Suspension (ESPN First Take)

The NFL wants Tom Brady’s head on a platter, and they are not playing. Not only was the Tom Brady suspension upheld, but the league released an inflammatory statement to damage Brady’s reputation before a suspected legal battle. The media ran with the statement, even though it was pure conjecture with no facts

With all of the attention on whether Brady is a cheater, it is easy to forget that this is about suspected deflated footballs in a 45-7 game. This should have never been a story because the NFL never said anything definitive about the actual PSI and how low the ball supposedly was, so there must be something else. The only logical explanation is that they found something to indicate other games were compromised, otherwise this is a witch hunt.

It makes no sense that the NFL has compromised the reputation of one of its biggest stars. It is unprecedented for the league to go after a star like this, especially considering the team was already fined $1 million and lost draft picks. This is a heavy price for a PSI infraction.

The release of information that he destroyed his cell phone is inflammatory because it paints Brady as having something to hide, even though it isn’t relevant to this situation. What does his phone have to do with it if the balls weren’t deflated? They can’t say definitively the balls were deflated, so they are distracting the public from that fact. Brady is widely viewed as the greatest quarterback ever, and now his reputation is stained, and that is sad.  It shouldn’t be surprising that the NFL took this stance because this is what they do. They violate their player’s rights, and then typically lose in court, but no one calls them out, so they keep doing it.

Even though the speculation is that the NFL has a good case, can this process be considered fair? There were no rules or processes in place, so how can the Patriots and Tom Brady be punished this harshly? If the suspension is upheld this infraction will cost a total of almost $3 million and draft picks.  But there is no hard proof, and it is questionable how much impact the crime really had.

Plus the penalties are unprecedented because Brett Favre didn’t hand over his phone and was just fined. Other deflated football incidents only incurred fines. It doesn’t make sense on so many levels, but maybe as this develops it will come together as something other that a witch hunt.

New Balance 998 Rockabilly

New Balance as a company is about doing the right thing.  The New Balance 998 Rockabilly is an example of a company doing something for the greater good.  The New Balance 998 Rockabilly is more than a shoe because the product is made in America.  In general companies are all about profits. It is cheaper to develop a third world country than to keep the money and jobs in America.  But New Balance is a private company, so they aren’t solely driven by profits.

The Rockabilly collection is considered an ode to thee 50’s inspired Americana.  The collection features non-marking outsole as well as a suede/mesh upper with a classic design.  As with all New Balance shoes comfort and fit is a priority.

 

New Balance 998 Rockabilly

 

Pedro Martinez Hall of Fame Speech

Pedro Martinez Hall of Fame Speech

The Pedro Martinez Hall of Fame speech was probably one of the most anticipated speeches in recent memory. Pedro was always entertaining as a player, and his speech was no different.  Pedro joked as he spoke in English and Spanish, thanking everyone that helped him make it from a third world country to the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame.

The speech was also anticipated because of the recent Colin Cowherd comments demeaning the Dominican Republic.  Cowherd questioned the intelligence of people from the country, and never one to run away from a situation Pedro opened his speech explaining that English was his second language, and he is from the Dominican so bear with him.  Then he went on to represent for his people, reveling in the fact that it had been 32 years since a Dominican baseball player was elected into the Hall of Fame.  He cemented the moment for his people when he ended his speech with himself and Juan Marichal holding up the Dominican Republic flag.

 

Jamal Murray Team Canada Hero in Win Against USA

Jamal Murray Team Canada vs USA Highlights

Behind Jamal Murray Team Canada beat USA Basketball 111-108 in over time in the semi-finals of the 2015 Pan Am Games from Toronto.  Murray is a Kentucky recruit, who will be in Lexington this fall after reclassifying from the Class of 2016 to the Class of 2015.  Due to his age Murray had to get his confidence, which is evident by the fact that he didn’t score in the first 3 quarters.  But when he did get it going he had 22 points in the 4th quarter and overtime, including big shots with the game on the line.

Murray appears to be a supreme talent because even though this wasn’t the United States best team, it was a team with high level college players and NBA D League players.  If Murray excelled here, he is bound to be a one and done candidate.  That is good for John Calipari, but USA Basketball should be on notice that Canada is coming for them.

USA didn’t have their main team, but neither did Canada.  Canadian NBA players Andrew Wiggins, Tristan Thompson, Nik Stauskas, Kelly Olynyk, Tyler Ennis, Cory Joseph, and Dwight Powell, all did not play.  Then there is also Utah Jazz first round pick Trey Lyles, and Class of 2016 top recruit 7’1″ Thon Maker, whose cross over and jumper on an opponent recently went viral.

USA Basketball is still the favorite in the 2016 Olympics, but it is not a given.  It would still be a surprise if they lost, but their reign of dominance is ending.  Team Canada is coming and by 2020 they could be the best in the world at basketball.

After Hulk Hogan Racist Comments…Are Role Models A Thing of Past?

It wasn’t bad enough that Bill Cosby was exposed as a rapist, but now it is Hulk Hogan racist comments have disappointed the masses.  Hogan was going to court around a 2006 sex tape that was filmed without his consent with himself and Heather Cole, the wife of his friend Bubba ‘The Love Sponge‘ Clem.  An edited version of the video showed up online in 2012 at Gawker.com,  so Hogan sued Cole, Clem, and Gawker Media for $100 million.

Since there was a lawsuit involved, and a FBI extortion investigation, the transcript of the sex tape ended up being released.  On the sex tape there is a racist tirade by Hulk in which he is upset that his daughter may be sleeping with a Black man.  Hogan spent years crafting an image that made him a lot of money and now it is gone.  WWE has fired Hogan  and removed all references to him from company material like he never happened.

It’s a sad end to someone so influential to have a fall like this.  Many adults grew up on Hulk Hogan, so there is a measure of disappointment.  Hogan may or may not be racist now because the incident happened over 8 years ago, and people have wondered for years about his relationship with his daughter.  So thinking about her sleeping with a Black man could have made him more emotional  that a typical father, which is why he reacted so emotionally.  The irony is that if it had come out then, the climate was different and it wouldn’t have caused such a backlash, but today it is a scandal, and he is done.

This should be a lesson to not put people on pedestals because they will disappoint you in the end.  We are all flawed, so if someone claims to be better than the rest, then that is probably a red flag.  Living the right way is something that is in you, not something to be done for profit.

Hulk Hogan Racist Comments

“I don’t know if Brooke was f*cking the black guy’s son,” Hulk raved, the sources add.

“I mean, I don’t have double standards. I mean, I am a racist, to a point, f*cking n*ggers. But then when it comes to nice people and sh*t, and whatever.”

Then, in a tirade to rival the racism embarrassments suffered by Mel Gibson and “Dog The Bounty Hunter,” Hulk unloaded even more hatred!

According to sources, he said: “I mean, I’d rather if she was going to f*ck some n*gger, I’d rather have her marry an 8-foot-tall n*gger worth a hundred million dollars! Like a basketball player!

“I guess we’re all a little racist. Fucking n*gger.”