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NBA risking billion dollar pipeline with labor talk

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epa04819213 NBA Commissioner Adam Silver (L) shakes hands with basketball player Justise Winslow after the Miami Heat selected him as the tenth pick in the first round of the 2015 NBA draft at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, USA, 25 June 2015.  EPA/JASON SZENES

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver (L) shakes hands with basketball player Justise Winslow after the Miami Heat selected him as the tenth pick in the first round of the 2015 NBA draft at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, USA, 25 June 2015.

LAS VEGAS — It’s hard to find much that isn’t going the NBA’s way.

The Finals between the Warriors and Cavaliers had the highest rating of any championship series since Michael Jordan’s playing days. Last month’s NBA Draft also posted its highest ESPN rating, with the Knicks and Lakers — the league’s flagship franchises, in its biggest markets — both coming away from it with exciting young players.

Free agency has attracted an immense amount of scrutiny this summer despite there being a limited number of difference-making players truly available, and even the NBA’s annual summer leagues have exploded in popularity, with thousands upon thousands of fans in Salt Lake City and Las Vegas coming to watch games.

Combine all of that with the upcoming multibillion-dollar television deal, set to begin in 2016, and the hefty new apparel deal with Nike that’s set to kick in two years later, and it’s clear it’s a boom time in the NBA.

But this week also offered a jarring reminder of the potential for danger on the horizon, in the form of a work stoppage two years from now.

“I don’t know the precise number and don’t want to get into it, but a significant number of teams are continuing to lose money, and they continue to lose money because their expenses exceed their revenue,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said this week.

The National Basketball Players Association countered Thursday with its own arguments — including how the union doesn’t actually get half of all basketball-related income, after arguing the owners down from a 60/40 split to 50/50 in their last battle — and everyone was off and running with thoughts of bitter labor negotiations in the summer of 2017 replacing the buzz of summer leagues and free agency. It will be up to Silver to remind everyone of all that’s good and prosperous in the NBA.

The first 18 months of Silver’s tenure as commissioner have been almost flawlessly executed, highlighted by the removal of Donald Sterling as owner of the Clippers last year. But the next 18 months — until Dec. 15, 2016, when either the league or the NBPA can opt out of the current collective bargaining agreement — will challenge Silver to make everyone involved realize the best thing for everyone is to keep the status quo.

That may not be possible. Michele Roberts, the NBPA’s executive director, hasn’t been shy about going on the attack during her time on the job, hitting everything from the salary cap to maximum salaries to the age limit to the players not receiving enough of the league’s basketball-related income.

Roberts could be trying to rally the troops after the players were pretty soundly beaten in the last round of negotiations in 2011, to engender support in her opening months on the job, and may strike a more conciliatory tone when the two sides sit down at the bargaining table. The more pessimistic viewpoint is that the rhetoric is a clear signal that the players, led by Roberts, are fixing for a fight after their defeat four years ago.

But that’s where Silver, who has formed an excellent relationship with the players over the past few years — both before and after taking over for David Stern — will come into play.

Silver’s line about a “significant number” of teams losing money — the exact number, according to multiple sources, is somewhere in the 8-to-10 range — immediately grabbed headlines, but the time to evaluate the financial health of the 30 teams will be after the 2016-17 season, the first season under the NBA’s massive new television contract.

Until then, salaries will continue to soar as the salary cap rises, and despite Silver’s grumpy answer, there’s little doubt the league is quite happy with the economic trends. Will that be enough to avoid a work stoppage? Jeopardizing the golden goose that is the NBA could be a very unwise decision.

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Transgender soccer player has her application denied because she’s too ‘physical’ to compete against biological females

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The Australian Football Women’s League has denied an application of a transgender soccer player because she’s too ‘physical’ to compete against biological females.

Hannah Mouncey, 27, a former member of the Australian men’s handball team, started “transitioning” in 2015 and ever since then she has participated in other Australian Football competitions against bio women.

She recently applied for the 2018 AFLW draft but her application was rejected, denying her the chance to take part in next year’s Australian rules football professional women’s league.

In its decision, the subcommittee said Mouncey, would have “an unreasonable advantage” over the smaller

Transgender soccer player has her application denied because she

“The AFL has made a decision that the physical disparity between Hannah and other AFLW players is significant, in that it would have an effect on the AFLW competition and give rise to an unreasonable advantage,” an AFL statement read.

The subcommittee added: “This decision solely relates to Ms. Mouncey’s nomination for the 2018 AFLW draft and participation in the 2018 AFLW competition. Ms. Mouncey may nominate for future AFLW drafts and for registration in other Australian Football competitions.”

Reacting after her application was rejected, Mouncey said she was “extremely disappointed”.

“While I am extremely disappointed with the AFL’s decision regarding my participation in Wednesday’s AFLW draft, I thank them for the genuine way in which they approached my situation.

“Despite not being able to take part in the draft, the AFL has given me the all clear to play for Ainslie next year in the AFL Canberra competition for which I am very grateful and look forward to doing in 2018, before hopefully being able to nominate for next year’s draft”.

Transgender soccer player has her application denied because she

The AFL Players Association (AFLPA) are also not happy with AFL and have accused them of lacking “clear guidelines for transgender players”.

Its statement added: “No athlete should face such confusion around their eligibility for an elite competition just days out from a draft.”

According to BBC, Mouncey, who is 6ft 2in and weighs 15st 8lb, has played eight matches and kicked 17 goals for Ainslie in the Canberra Women’s League.

Transgender soccer player has her application denied because she

© 2017, Ikrueyen Vickky. All rights reserved.

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US Olympic gymnast, McKayla Maroney says team doctor started molesting her when she was 13

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US Olympic gold winning gymnast, McKayla Maroney has alleged that she was molested by a former USA Gymnastics team doctor as she adds her voice to the #MeToo movement on social media where people are sharing experiences of sexual harassment and assault.

 

In a statement released on her Twitter page today, the 21 year old athlete alleged she was molested for years by former USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar, who is currently awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to federal child pornography charges.

 

“People should know that this is not just happening in Hollywood,” she wrote, in reference to the allegations about producer Harvey Weinstein. “It started when I was 13 years old, and it didn’t end until I left the sport. I had a dream to go to the Olympics, and the things that I had to endure to get there were unnecessary and disgusting.”

 

Maroney ended her involvement with the sport in 2016

 

© 2017, Ikrueyen Vickky. All rights reserved.

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Leicester City sack manager, Craig Shakespeare

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Leicester City Football Club has parted ways with its first team manager, Craig Shakespeare.

 

According to the club, Michael Appleton will be in charge of the First Team as Caretaker Manager for Saturday’s Premier League trip to Swansea City, supported by First Team Coaches Mike Stowell and Adam Sadler.

 

Leicester City Vice Chairman, Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha said: “Craig has been a great servant to Leicester City during his spells as an Assistant Manager and since taking over as Manager in challenging circumstances in February. His dedication to the Club and to his work has been absolute and the contribution he made to the most successful period in Leicester City history is considerable. However, our early promise under Craig’s management has not been consistently evident in the months since and the Board feels that, regrettably, a change is necessary to keep the Club moving forward consistent with the long-term expectations of our supporters, Board and owners”. 

 

He continued to say, “Craig is and will remain a very popular, respected figure at Leicester City and will be welcome back at King Power Stadium in future, both professionally and as a friend of the Club.”  

 

The Club will now begin the process of identifying and appointing its next First Team Manager and will make no further comment on the process until the appropriate time.

© 2017, Ikrueyen Vickky. All rights reserved.

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