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Tim Micallef: Ahead of the pack

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The sports broadcasting industry has maintained itself by providing thirsty sports fans with the information they seek to quench it. As the industry evolves, fans want more than just water to attack their thirst; they want something with a little more flavour.

Tim Micallef is at the forefront of Canadian broadcasters who are supplying their audience with Gatorade to give them that extra kick. The co-anchor of The Score Tonight is a true Canadian success story. He debuted at The Score as an intern and has ascended to the role of prime time anchor.

BBM recently spoke with Tim and found out who’s shoes he’d most like to fill and that he misses the days when the UNLV Runnin’ Rebels were running March Madness.

BBM: Can you ball?

Tim Micallef: Not anymore, how ‘bout them apples? I played high school ball until grade 12, but I was behind what turned out to be two All-Canadian point guards and decided you know what, maybe I should hang them ball shoes up and play hockey instead.

BBM: Do you come up with some of the lines you use before you need them on the show?
TM: It’s weird the way they pop to you. Me personally, I guess most of them (come to me) in the car and then I just imagine the situations, or if I’m watching a movie or something and I like the line. I just saw Wedding Crashers and that Will Ferrell line where he says, “Mom, the meatloaf!” And I’m just thinking how I can work that into some sort of line. They come to you at so many different times…I get most of them in the car.

BBM: Have you always wanted to work in the sports industry?
TM: Ever since I realized I wasn’t a good enough athlete. I’m the youngest of four boys and we all played different sports. I kind of was the jack-of-all-trades, master of none; but I was blessed with enough knowledge to know that I stunk. I was always a smart player, but just didn’t have the athletic ability. So I guess it was around grade 11, grade 12 where I figured the forever 40 (yard dash) and the five inch vertical weren’t going to do me any good. So I figured how else can I stay close? And this was it.

BBM: You’ve worked as a producer, reporter, play-by-play man and as an anchor, do you prefer one job to the others?
TM: I enjoy doing a little bit of everything. As an anchor out there, sometimes you have to put your reputation into other people’s hands. I like the idea of controlling your own destiny as a producer, but there’s nothing like the rush of being on air and being live.

BBM: Have you ever gotten a chance to meet any of your favorite sports broadcasters?
TM: I’ve never met any of the guys on my list (Check Tim’s bio at thescore.ca to see his list). It’s kind of weird, I’ve been to the Super Bowl, the NBA All-Star game and I’ve never come across the guys that I (admire most). I feel like I’m just stealing people for my personality. The guys that I liked, I just kind of took a little bit off each one of them, and I’ve never gotten to meet any of them.

BBM: Of all the guys you look up to, is there one or two that you look at as being the most influential on the air?
TM: There are little pieces of everybody. I guess (Chris) Burman taught me to have fun with it. It’s not rocket science; it’s not brain surgery. The way the sports industry is today, by the time you see the highlights; you probably know the score already. It’s changed so much. I’m not nearly as wacky when I do play-by-play. You’re secondary to the game. You’re just there to compliment the game. The game is the main focus, so I try not to take away from (it) when I do play-by-play.

BBM: How do you feel you got your big break?
TM: I started as kind of the basketball guy and I don’t know about any other person in Canada that has used basketball as a stepping-stone to get to a prime time desk job. I think my versatility and love for basketball helped me get there because the guys at The Score were like; “Oh, there are people that like basketball.” Just looking across Canada, I don’t think there’s another person who has used basketball like that. In Canada, the NHL will always be king, but I think that sports stations don’t recognize enough right now that basketball is growing and that there are kids that grew up idolizing basketball players.

BBM: If you were in charge of all the programming on The Score for one day, what would be on the Tim Micallef Network?

TM: I’d give the people what they want. I think that’s the thing that’s lost in sports television in Canada, is that you have to listen to what the people want. I think we do a good job of that at The Score, but at the same time to quote Wu-Tang, “Cash rules everything around me, C.R.E.A.M. get the money, dolla dolla bill y’all.” So I mean, hockey just seems to bring in more money, but I think I would love to see what the people want and I think that’s what we do a good job of right now.

BBM: Is there an event you haven’t been to yet, that you would really love to go to?

TM: The Olympics. I remember when Toronto was making the bid for the Olympics and I thought how cool that would be to broadcast the Olympics, and more specifically, the basketball competition from my hometown. I thought that would be my ultimate goal.

BBM: If you could replace one athlete and be in their shoes, whose shoes would you fill?

TM: I think it would be fun to be Steve Nash right about now, spoon-feeding Amare. Although I might want to be single. Shaq Daddy in Miami. The king of Miami would be okay right about now. Maybe it’s Shaq. The most dominant player in the NBA, (and) the king of Miami.

BBM: If you could go back in time and see any game, what game would you go to?

TM: If you made me pick just one, I’d probably go insane. That’s the beauty of what we do, is we get to re-live these moments over and over and over again. I live for those classic moments. If I could go back, I would make Larry Johnson take the two pointer against Duke (In the 1991 Final Four) instead of kickin’ it out to Anderson Hunt for three. The UNLV Runnin’ Rebels, that was my team. Those were my boys.

BBM: Do you find since you’ve started working in the sports industry that your perception of it has changed at all?

TM: A little bit. First off, I’m always cheering for the better game; I don’t care who wins anymore. I want the more intriguing game, the more interesting game. You get to know some of the players. You kind of lose that fan in you a little bit, because you’re cheering for a more interesting outcome. I still live for those few things that can capture me the way I used to be captured as a fan.

BBM: What do you like to do outside of work?

TM: I like to chill with my boys. I’m getting to the age where I’m slowing down on the club scene. Once you start losing your hair, the club scene starts losing a bit of its appeal to you. I like to play a lot of poker with my boys.

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NBA

La La Lakerland Played Host To A City Of All-Stars At The Weekend

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Verizon Slam Dunk Contest 2018
Like Father, Like Slam,

Los Angeles, it doesn’t get much more Hollywood than this. Even if Beyonce, Queen Latifah, Chris Tucker and even the other Michael (B) Jordan were taking in all the lights, camera action court-side.

After the 2017 Mardi Gras in New Orleans last year and two calendar’s after our native Toronto held the All Star Weekend in Canada, the sixth A.S.G. in the Clipper and Lakerland of the downtown STAPLES of L.A. was the first of it’s kind. As two of the best players in the association and reigning finalists decided to draft their own pool of players against the wall for the ultimate black and white pick-up game between ‘Team Stephen’ and ‘Team LeBron’, for all the marbles of which of the last two champions would be King.

Well it certainly helps if James picks his rivals reigning MVP teammate Kevin Durant and his own former partner in pine championship crime Kyrie Irving for the big shots first.

But before all that it was down to regular festivities to begin the weekend of All-Star. Basketball’s equivalent of music’s Grammy’s or movies Oscars in Superbowl February. Opening these ceremonials Team World beat down Team USA 155-124 in the Rising Stars game that should really tell you something. Despite home court advantage rookie steal, Kyle Kuzma notching 20, fellow Californian franchise face Buddy Hield was king as the Sacramento star hit 29 as the two sides wore Clipper and Laker interloped Buffalo and MPLS throwbacks for the Hollywood script. And after Quavo of hit duo Migos took home the Celebrity Game MVP as Team Clippers beat Team Lakers 79-66, Spencer Dinwiddie paid the bills in a superior skills comp. Before scorching Sun in California Devin Booker showed his career high 70 was no one-hit wonder as he burnt down all the nets and the money-ball rack. Winning the three-point contest showdown from reigning winner and sixth man Eric Gordon. Grounding the Rocket as this Phoenix rose. Book it!

But after the most therapeutic competition of All-Star weekend it was time for the most exciting one just as compelling. And in honoring his father Larry Nance, the 1984 winner of the inaugural Slam-Dunk contest, Larry Nance Jr. rocked the baby cradle, like father, like dunk. As he even rocked the old-school Phoenix Suns jersey, short shorts and high-socks for an inspired imitation. But under the magicians cloak, those Los Angeles natives in attendance draped in gold wish he had turned into someone turning back the clock and wearing a Lakers jersey (those Lonzo assists with the ball would have helped). As what would have been a long awaited, eagerly anticipated home-team representation turned into an Akron homecoming for the Ohio hometown hero like LeBron in the Kings land once the trade deadline passed.

Pops Nance loved it though after he himself played the lions share of his career in Cleveland as a Cavalier. Even assisting his boy on his second slam, before he blew the house down with a windmill that even rocked Chris Rock and then double tapped an Instagram worthy picture perfect dunk that if your phone blinked, you’d have had to instant replay it to not miss it and believe it. But all this court creativity wasn’t enough like Maverick rookie Dennis Smith Jr.’s 360 reverse, through the legs 50. Or All-Star Victor Oladipo getting an assist off King T’Challa himself Chadwick Boseman, suiting up in the Black Panther mask and clawing a tomahawk. And if you think that was special, if only you were a fly on the wall for the moment entertainment megastar Jamie Foxx told Vic he loved his album and started singing ‘A Song For You’ with him in the parking lot (as told by Sports Illustrated’s Lee Jenkins). As Utah’s jazz man Donovan Mitchell won by jumping over Kevin Hart and his family (Come on! How hard is that? The comedian was even crouched down. Seriously?! He could have even been sat on his shoulders and Mitch would have been good), and then breaking out the classic Vince Carter Raptor jersey and doing you know what.

The whole weekend turned out to be a testament to a throwback tribute despite Nike’s brand new Team LeBron and Steph duds. Last years All-Star representative, Pelican Anthony Davis paying tribute to his injury fallen teammate brother Cousins by wearing what would have been his numero zero jersey. Free agent suitors beware, DeMarcus is going nowhere now this summer after this. You see he saw on I.G. but look at the shot. How s### was his seat for a would be player?

But after Black Eyed Pea Fergie caught flack for her soulful and sultry rendition of the Star Spangled Banner national anthem (hey, you didn’t complain when Marvin did it) the game hit all the high-flying, dunking high-notes. So much so fans needed throat lozenges like Pink! Even if there wasn’t a single Clipper or Laker representative in the game itself. Despite the lobbying for 6 Man, Lou Will and new Laker Isaiah Thomas only recently being LeBron’s actual teammate.

The King took the MVP crown himself as his 29 points, 10 rebounds and 8 assists helped turn a 15 point hole into a 148-145 victory. And from the look on his face as he leapt into Kevin Durant’s arms of all people, it looked like he just won the NBA Championship back. And from the look on Steph’s face on the receiving end reply it was hard to disagree.

You may be the champion, but I’m the best in the world those eyes said.

Well it’s up to you to decide when round 2 of the All Star draft is televised next year for all to see in M.J.’s land of the greatest.

Charlotte’s going to be good!

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Men

Syracuse Oshae Brissett delivers massive Rack Attack on Miami Hurricanes

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Syracuse Oshae Brissett Delivers Massive Rack Attack On Miami Hurricanes
Photo: David Gunn - Syracuse

Canadian Freshman and Syracuse Stud Oshae Brissett added to his growing and impressive highlight package with a massive rack attack and facial dunk on the face of Miami Hurricanes defender. The Mississauga, Ontario native is averaging a 14.7 points and 9.0 rebounds per game and is amongst college basketball finest talents. Brissett has started all the Orangemens’ 27 games to date and has racked up 11 double-doubles in the process. A skilled 6’8″ forward who has stardom written all-over him.

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NBA

Is Isaiah Thomas IT For The Lakers?

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Usa Today 10601289.0
IT Came On A Hollywood Night

It’s All-Star break this weekend in Los Angeles, but the Lakers already have a new one since the trade deadline to lead their young core in the heart of the city. Even if Team LeBron didn’t pick him for Sundays pick up.

But how long will IT last?

Right now in the NBA the amount of movers is really putting the shakers on teams. So much so that in regards to loyalty in this league it’s even colder than the Olympics in Pyeonchang, South Korea right now. But then again it is the Winter after all. Recently Cleveland cleaned house and LeBron’s land for some Cavalier moves. Jettisoning several All-Star points for their changing of the guard. Including former MVP Derrick Rose, ‘Bron brodie Dwyane Wade back to the Heat of Miami, South Beach and even the guy they traded Kyrie for.

Yep that’s right after summer swapping Irving for Isaiah, the Cavs sent Thomas along with versatile big-man vet Channing Frye to Lakerland. In return they got the buckets of ‘Sixth Man’ sure thing Jordan Clarkson and another Akron hometown hero in the form of Larry Nance Jr.

And although the Lakers picked-up a certified All-Star with Iverson kill at will, little man syndrome scoring a lot of fans where left tweeting negative emojis and gifs following the deadline deal. And not because their new number seven seal was a former Boston Celtic great only a season ago. Or that the former tooth chipper is now a befallen superstar by way of injury. More that the Lake Show loved the young Ball, Ingram, Kuzma, Randle and Zubac core that has lost it’s first big time players of the future since the de-loading trade of D’Angelo Russell last summer.

Clarkson was a class act and there from the luck of the late round steal start. Whereas when Nance Jr. ran the floor like his pops all the bleachers snapped shut, tilted up. Lakerland finally thought they would see their own slamming son represent them in the Slam Dunk Contest he should surely win now like father, like dunk today. But now he’ll be doing it all for one and one for all.

But with the fast tracked pace of the Lakers new speedy dynamite dynamo it could still be Showtime again for Magic’s men like when Earvin Johnson was kissing another Isiah Thomas hello in the golden era 80’s. But this Isaiah Thomas-so long as he can ball in the same backcourt as Ball once injury time gives way to the Lavar…excuse me the Lonzo Angeles Lakers-could attract even more free agents like the expected homecoming of Paul George from the Thunder to the purple reign this offseason. Even if rumour has a Black Panther/Killmonger like relationship between this point prince and the King of the Ohio land.

But if it’s between LeBron as a Laker or another one of James’ sidekicks than who do you think will hold the headlines for tomorrows Los Angeles Times? Especially as Isaiah could aim higher than coming off the bench this summer as a free agent without restriction himself. His big contract coming off the books with Channing’s (Frye not Hollywood’s Tatum), another big three big in Brook Lopez and another former All-Star in Luol Deng (yep…he’s still here).

All these multiples of millions would surely make for a kings ransom.

This could be it, so lets enjoy I.T. whilst he lasts.

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