Joe Horn Apologizes to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and Slams NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith

Posted in Blogroll on August 26th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

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After the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, Joe Horn was a superhero throughout the Gulf region. 

Head over to Bleacher Report to check out former Saints receiver Joe Horn’s words as told to me, Michael Tillery, regarding the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina as it happened back then. He said some things I did not know. Horn was the Saints’ face of the effort to return the Saints to New Orleans, because was as involved as anyone after the storm. He gave his time and money like few others, and says that people didn’t leave despite all the warnings to do so (there was much criticism from folk outside of the New Orleans) because it wasn’t the storm damage that devastated the region, it was the four levees breaking in the middle of the night that eventually trapped city residents. During our convo, Horn offered an apology to Roger Goodell after he was very critical of the NFL Commissioner in May. His words of NFLPA Head DeMaurice Smith are also very critcal, strong to the point, and something the NFL at-large needs to hear.

“As far as my statements criticizing Roger Goodell on his disciplinary practices, I’m going to back up and recant what I said. I’d like to apologize to him. I did that interview after being upset at all the decisions he was making with all that power. I really, really, really want to apologize to Roger Goodell. Everything I said was really stupid! At the end of the day, the one I should have gone after and criticized was DeMaurice Smith. That’s who I should have said that the players should have fired. What lawyer lets the NFL players he represents sign a CBA deal giving Roger Goodell that much damn power? So, why in the hell am I mad at Roger Goodell? Goodell knows who he is. Shit. Roger Goodell works for the owners. He doesn’t work for the players. He works for the NFL to make the league more money, and be the judge and the jury. You can’t take the whip outta his hand unless you’re DeMaurice Smith and say I’m not signing that deal. It’s simple. DeMaurice Smith should have said “Roger, you cannot suspend a player until he goes to court and the judge and the jury finds he’s either guilty or not guilty. You can’t suspend a player until you find out what’s in the report. DeMaurice Smith works for the players. He’s supposed to tell them, “No, no, no guys. We have to take the power from Roger Goodell’s hands, so let me talk to him and negotiate the power that he cannot have. Because you’re arrested, you’re not going to be suspended until he finds out what you did wrong. No, you’re going to allow the court process to go through, and once they decide what happens, that’s when I’ll decide if you’re to be suspended. Guess what? You may not be guilty.” So, it’s the other way around. I feel so stupid, ignorant and uninformed by going after Roger Goodell, when DeMaurice Smith is the reason he has so much power. I’m making a national apology to Roger Goodell, and I spoke so emotionally because I was pissed off. Thinking it over after a couple of days, I was like damn I need to do another interview. I should have known and spoken that it was DeMaurice Smith, and not Roger Goodell, that gave the league the power to treat players like slaves. To clarify, I mean white, black, Mexican – any player in the NFL. Back in the day, there were white folk in the cotton field too.” – Joe Horn

There you have it. It will be very interesting to see if Horn’s words cause ripples within the NFL Player’s Association regarding DeMaurice Smith and the rest of union leadership. Players are checking lists and makin’ ’em twice for those representing their interests like never before because corruption is a helluva drug. Last season was hellish on the NFL and its brand, so how will the league respond internally to such a public relations disaster and rebuild trust with fans externally? Check the player conduct first (ultimately it’s their responsibility to do the right thing), the sweat under DeMaurice Smith’s collar second, and lastly, the consistency, moral rationale and strength of Roger Goodell’s hand when player misconduct — perceived or otherwise — comes into question.

This should be a most compelling year for the NFL. The preseason has never generated this much evenly distributed buzz. That’s a testament to such a dramatic Super Bowl, the drastically over inflated idiocy of Deflate Gate, casual fan convos of player misconduct, CTE and general player safety, the league’s ever evolving talent, and of course the unrelenting explosion of social media.

Work stoppages across sports have given fans reason to educate themselves on the inner workings of unions, how those unions process collective bargaining agreements, league leadership in all regard, and of course, salaries and salary caps. The NFL is such a marketing juggernaut that fans clamor for everything falling under its brand, and because of that reality, it appears everyone associated with the league is and should be under scrutiny as well.

Ik Enemkpali and Geno Smith: A Lesson in Humility

Posted in Blogroll on August 18th, 2015 by Ron Glover

(AP Images)

Former NY Jets linebacker Ik Enemkpali caught a break by signing with the Buffalo Bills one day after wiring Geno Smith’s jaw.

Last week’s locker room dust-up between New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith and former teammate turned Buffalo Bill Ik Enemkpali gave us everything the on-field scuffle between Carolina Panthers Cam Newton and Josh Norman did not.

A $600 beef has detoured Smith’s attempts to take the reins as the team’s leader in his third season — while Enemkpali hopes to make the Bills 53-man roster amid heavy scrutiny.

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TNT and NBA TV 2015-2016 Regular Season Schedule

Posted in Blogroll on August 12th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

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Finals repeat? We’ll see. NBA TV’s schedule follows TNT’s below. 

TNT Tips Off 2015-16 NBA Regular Season with Marquee Opening Night Doubleheader – NBA Champion Golden State & Kia NBA MVP Stephen Curry vs. New Orleans & All-Star Anthony Davis; Cleveland & LeBron James Visiting Chicago & Derrick Rose. TNT’s 53-Game Schedule to Showcase NBA’s Biggest Stars Multiple Appearances by League’s Top Teams. Network to Present Blockbuster MLK, Jr. Day Primetime Doubleheader – NBA Finals Rematch Featuring Golden State vs. Cleveland; Los Angeles Clippers & Blake Griffin vs. Houston & James Harden.

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What I Think I Know About The NBA Offseason

Posted in Blogroll on July 10th, 2015 by Okori Wadsworth

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Where did they all go?

With NBA Free Agency, and the Draft that preceded it all but over, we now have more of a real sense of what the contenders to the title are doing and what the teams from the bottom are looking at to climb to the very top of the mountain.

Top Contenders reloaded, while other teams that were dark horses saw their rosters, and their title hopes, fall to bits around them.

Some teams ran their entire roster, and in the case of one their entire organizational philosophy, back for a 2nd go-round figuring that the best thing to do was simply to try again and see if they could improve on past performance.

Two of the leagues one-time Tiffany franchises, 1 more recently than the other, struck out into the free agent bazaar with money and opportunity, and found drastically different responses waiting for them. The trick with one is that they ended up shopping at the less flashy end of the market after buying something enthralling that may not fit. The other is still looking, and has a lump of coal in one hand and a trash can in the other.

And then there’s Sacramento; poor misguided, utterly confused by the whole process, broken Sacramento. Mitch Richmond is not walking through that door, Sacramento. Neither is Doug Christie, Bobby Jackson, or even Jason Williams.

Here’s what I think I know about what happened in the NBA’s off season.
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Okori Wadsworth And Ashley Wells Preview The NBA Draft

Posted in Blogroll on June 25th, 2015 by Okori Wadsworth

Tonight, Ashley Wells and I recorded a special NBA Draft Lottery preview. We went through the picks from the Minnesota Timberwolves at 1 to the Oklahoma City Thunder at 14. Listen and enjoy. Good comments will mean more of these in the future.

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Michael Tillery, Naj Grant, Nina Morena and Okori Wadsworth Talk the NBA Finals

Posted in Blogroll on June 18th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

(AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

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All respect due…

Had a convo last night with some good folk about the NBA Finals. Naj Grant, Nina Morena, Okori Wadsworth and I talked pretty much about everything NBA following the Warriors coronation last night. Check it after the jump.

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In Game 6, Behind Finals MVP Andre Iguodala, Golden State Wins the NBA Championship over LeBron James and Cleveland, 105-97

Posted in Blogroll on June 17th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

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The last time the Warriors won the chip neither of these cats were born. 

The Golden State Warriors complete a dream season by disposing of LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers 105-97 in Game 6 of the NBA Finals. Andre Iguodala, who had 25 points, 5 rips and 5 assists, became the first Finals MVP with 0 regular season starts. The Warriors, founded in Philadelphia in 1946, claims it’s 4th NBA title (1946, 1957, 1975 and 2015) and the first in 40 years. Steve Kerr became the 1st rookie head coach to win a title since Pat Riley did the same in 1982. The 67-15 Dubs went 16-5 during the playoffs, and ended the year with the 3rd most wins in NBA history behind the ’95-’96 and ’96-’97 Chicago Bulls — two teams that Steve Kerr made big shots for whenever Michael Jordan found himself doubled.  LeBron had 32 points, 18 rebounds and 9 assists to lead the Cavs, but it just wasn’t enough, and Cleveland remains in search of its first title of any kind since 1964. Steph Curry, who had 25 points to match Iguodala, also had 8 dimes, 6 boards and 3 steals.

Oakland rejoices for the first time since 1975 when Rick Barry shot free throws like Riley Curry would.

That ain’t no diss…

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In Game 3, LeBron James Metal and Matthew Dellevadova Grit Push the Cavs Over the Warriors 96-91

Posted in Blogroll on June 10th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

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His world. 

LeBron James continued his all out attack on sports history with another monster game in these NBA Playoffs. In Game 3, the Cleveland Cavaliers won their first ever Finals home game, 96-91 over the Golden State Warriors. The Cavaliers now lead the best of seven series 2-1, with Game 4 tipping Thursday at 9 pm eastern, also in Cleveland. James had an otherworldly 40 points, 12 rebounds, 8 assists, 4 steals and 2 blocks. Matthew Dellavedova scored an unexpected 20, and his gritty play in support of LeBron’s do everything consistency defensively and otherwise, helped the Cavs hold on after yet another double digit comeback by the Warriors — their third in as many games. Steph Curry scored 27 on 10-20 shooting, had 6 assists and 6 boards to lead Golden State, but that was after shaking off a bad first half from the field. Andre Iguodala has 15, 5 and 5, and Klay Thompson had 14 (not enough splash though), but it was good to see Curry shed his shooting woes and get back to his MVP self. He’s the best shooter I’ve ever seen, but the Dubs as a team have to shoot better. They’ve jacked up 69 threes the last two games and have only hit 20 of those attempts. Most of those came in last night’s torrid comeback, but that’s what they do. The Cavs actually shot better in all three facets than the W’s last night with LeBron shooting the same number of attempts as GS (He was 10-12, Golden State was 7-12). Scary is the thought that LeBron can actually have more efficient games shooting the rock, but the pressure he puts on Golden State’s D every time down obviously is having a cumulative effect. Steve Kerr has to make some heady adjustments if the Warriors are to win this series. Tristan Thompson is making himself a lot of money. and contributed 10 points and 13 boards; J.R. Smith had 10 points. Dellavedova was hospitalized with cramps, and Iman Shumpert has a bruised shoulder, so that may or may not become an issue in Game 4. Harrison Barnes cannot go scoreless like he did last night; look for David Lee’s minutes to increase. He had 11 points in a little over 13 minutes, and the Warriors also need his interior passing. I didn’t cover the game last night, but being in that building for 25 games or so, you can best believe as loud as it was last night, the Q will be even louder for Game 4. They can taste a 51 year old selection, and are intoxicated in its worth.

Some commentary below…

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Jerold Wells Jr., and Michael Tillery Recap Game 2 and Preview Game 3; Robert Horry and Rudy Tomjanovich Talk NBA TV’s Clutch City

Posted in Blogroll on June 9th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

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Those were special teams…

Talked to Rudy Tomjanovich and Robert Horry about their time in Houston re: NBA TV’s Clutch City, and added it to the convo Jerold Wells Jr. and I had of the NBA Finals. Dig it below. Thanks for tuning in.

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Despite 44 from LeBron, Golden State’s Bench Goes Deep In Game 1 to Beat the Cavs 108-100 in OT

Posted in Blogroll on June 5th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

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Difference maker…

Some cats dream of moments so hard that when the moment happens, they become them. Andre Iguodala was always the glue guy here in Philly. He was a player I didn’t want the Sixers to get rid of regardless of what fans and media said. He just needed a more balanced team. He was never afforded that chance, and you know what they say about one man’s trash. Now that he’s on the big stage, Dre came through like the champ he is. Anthony Gilbert and I have covered some great battles between Dre and LeBron and it always seemed like Iguodala got up big for the best player on the planet. He’s athletic and strong enough to stay in front of James and never gives up on the play especially when he knows LeBron is hot. He has everything physically to be a great defender, and last night, when checking the King in big moments, he worked like it was his last ever game. His 15 points led a great Golden State bench effort, and in overtime, the Warriors outscored the Cavs 10-2, to take Game 1 of the NBA Finals 108-100.

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LeBron James: The King of Rock

Posted in Blogroll on June 4th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

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What do you see in this pic? Something genuinely family or otherwise?

In an age where LeBron James is unfavorably compared to the arguable GOAT Michael Jordan at every turn exclusive of sharing the same number, what James has accomplished in his much scrutinized 12 NBA years is as incredible as any athletic feat imaginable. Appearing in his 5th straight Finals and 6th overall during that span will be what most attach their emotions to in these social media debatable days, but what is more remarkable about LeBron James, sports first social media superstar, is his ability to lead with the coolest of demeanor amidst a white hot world microscope. After he left Miami with 2 NBA titles in 4 tries, you’d think the criticism would fall silent, but even as Cleveland sits precipitously above the unyielding abyss, many still doubt LeBron’s preternatural ability to stare into the logic drowning flames decidedly below, and potentially claim a title 51 years lost to the melancholy depths of Lake Erie dystopianism.

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Three Things I Think I Know About The NBA Finals

Posted in Blogroll on June 4th, 2015 by Okori Wadsworth

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Two teams want it. Only one can have it.

This is the match-up we all wanted. The Golden State Warriors, a 67-win juggernaut are led by the reigning MVP Steph Curry and loaded with talent pretty much up and down the roster will go against LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers — who are built in the image, and to the exact specifications, of their star. But that’s just the surface story. For a match-up as good, and as fun, as this is going to be going a bit deeper is necessary. In order to do that, we have to get past our preconceived notions of what we think we know. Here are three things that I think I know about the NBA finals.

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2015 NBA Finals: Will Cleveland or Golden State Experience That Glorious Champagne Burn?

Posted in Blogroll on June 4th, 2015 by Jerold Wells Jr.

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It will take a warrior effort to stop LeBron James.

The 2015 NBA Finals will create a legendary moment for a title starved city no matter who wins. Can Golden State win a title for first time in 40 years, secured by the regular season most valuable player, or will Akron’s favorite son do the same for Cleveland, Ohio? Cleveland has not won a title in any sport since Jim Brown led the Browns to the NFL Championship in 1964.

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Justice for Ty Sawyer: His Father, Terrence Garnett, Speaks about the Lack of Due Process in His Son’s Death

Posted in Blogroll on May 5th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

 

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On April 26th, 2015, Ty Sawyer and Patrick Downey fought at a party in Odessa, Delaware. Ty was slammed to the ground, kicked in his head, and died after never regaining consciousness. In the aftermath, Downey hasn’t been charged. Sawyer’s parents, Terrence Garnett and Lisa Sawyer, are demanding justice. Can you imagine the frustration in hearing that no one will be held responsible for your child’s death? Can you also imagine not being notified by the authorities since your son’s death? While Ty’s mom has been contacted, it’s unbelievable that Ty’s dad hasn’t received even a courtesy call from law enforcement, and that disrespect is in partLisa and Ty reason why the diverse Odessa/Middletown community has come together strongly to support Ty’s family. Garnett, appears today on The Starting Five Live to discuss his feelings about all this, because he and Ty’s mom simply want due process. This is about justice and most definitely about accountability. Without justice, there can be no accountability, and bringing attention to this story may result in the justice Ty Sawyer’s family seeks. My conversation with Terrence is below. It is my honor to have done this. Please share this talk across social media wherever there is an opportunity. This needs to go viral. Thanks for tuning in.

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@TSFSports Live Blog of the 2015 NFL Draft

Posted in Blogroll on May 1st, 2015 by Ron Glover

(USAToday.com)

Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota are expected to go Nos. 1 and 2, respectively.

The 2015 NFL Draft is one of the most anticipated in recent memory. Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston is almost sure to be the first overall pick — which would land him with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Oregon quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota is slated to be selected by the Tennessee Titans second overall, that’s unless the Titans bite on one of the several deals being dangled by several teams.

The biggest question of the night is what does Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly have planned as he continues to put his stamp on the Birds. Be prepared for what could be a very historic evening.

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