The King’s greatest move this year wasn’t when he headed to Hollywood to become the latest in a line of legendary Los Angeles Lakers like Jerry West, Elgin Baylor, Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant to look to the rafters he one day hopes to put a banner. Up there with his jersey that belongs in NBA storied purple and gold lineage.
It wasn’t one of number 23’s countless signature moves. Were built like a linebacker he runs the entire hardwood like a classic quarterback, through the defence like butter left out the fridge overnight. Before Run DMC ‘You Be Illin’ touching down with a Statue Of Liberty, hammer of “BRING ME THANOS” dunk.
It’s not even when the league’s former villifed monarch turned hero for life changed the game again by the royal decree of the click of his fingers.
And no we aren’t talking about when the greatest player of all-time not named Mike signed on the Tinseltown dotted line for the ‘Space Jam’ sequel too.
No the monster move of LeBron James this year and because everything moves through him the best moment of hoops history this calendar didn’t even belong on court. Although you can bet this place has a fair few. The last time LeBron left his Cleveland, Ohio franchise with televised decisions for South Beach he really felt the heat and not even in Miami. He left in a fire and brimstone of scorched Cavalier jerseys and rocks being thrown at his billboard throne.
But not this time.
This time after making good on his promise to return home and win a ring for The Land, the lord of the Kings stood quiet as he left for the bright lights of a Hollywood Lakerland kingdom that had turned into a Lonzo Angeles Lakers, big balling reality show thanks to LaVar. Worse than when Lamar married a Kardashian (stay up legend. No one did it like the magic of playing every spot before positionless basketball like Odom). LeBron was mum for a few days like visiting his folks for the holidays. This was because he was still in Ohio leaving his home with a parting gift much more touching then a full page spread in the Cleveland Plain Dealer which is still a big deal.
Truly pledging to the place he called his own and showing us that basketball is more than a game. James didn’t shut up and dribble. LeBron kept quiet and built a school. Flexing that mental muscle. When fellow Laker legends like Kobe were winning NBA first Oscars and starting production companies from the Granity up. Or adding to their storied history books, chapter and verse by writing Sherlock Holmes novels like Kareem. LeBron James was ensuring the future of underprivileged children from an elementary level.
A passion project not a “look at me” vanity one the King’s vision took a ‘Mamba Mentality’ to the classroom (we’re sure that essential text will rightfully end up part of the curriculum). Ensuring kids without that chance previously got one. Giving the school more activities, opportunities, ways to deal with stress and poverty, food banks and job placements for parents struggling.
What school does that?
Touch hardwood. I don’t want to tempt fate. But I can’t remember the last time LeBron James missed one game of the 82 season. But as a kid because his parents didn’t have a car, young LeBron missed a critical 83 days of school. It’s almost prophetic. But that all ended when the King loved his bicycle like Queen. And now number 23 is giving out two wheels like Oprah to every kid in attendance.
And you though the viral video of him coaching his son on the sidelines positively after a losing game that’s been making the timeline rounds this week was heart warming.
And of course the only one that had something negative to say about this was (no not Chuck) Donald Trump. We won’t even give his twit tweets the light of day here like everyone else who should turn their back to this child demanding our attention. But we will say this how many schools has the Donald opened? Or if he wants to get petty how many young lives has LeBron James destroyed?
Even the First Lady Melania Trump backed up the King, saying she likes LeBron James and all he does (can you imagine the Trump family dinner that night?). Which really says it all.
So in the best Basketball moment of the year, Christmas came early this summer for the kids of Akron, Ohio.
And by the end of his term you know the King is just getting started.
Watch THIS Work! The WNBA Bets On Women
Ten years ago the motto of the Women’s National Basketball Association was to, ‘Expect Great’. Now a decade later and into the roaring 20’s of a whole new one and world, the league that tells you to watch them work truly has for all it’s worth.
The WNBA and CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement) has reached a monumental moment in the leagues history and its time to read all about it on Los Angeles Sparks twin superstar Chiney Ogwumike’s Twitter thread.
It tells us the CBA means…
When it comes to players salary and compensation there will be a 30% increase to the salary cap as the higher max pay player salary jumps like Lisa Leslie’s first dunk from $117,500 to $215,000. Whilst there will be an additional compensation for those top tier Candace Parker players around $300,000. Moving millions this is thee first time the league has moved units like this in six figures. And like Russell Westbrook why not? Because for every player like him there’s an Ogwumike. For every Candace a LeBron. Every Luka Doncic a Breanna Stewart. Every Larry Bird a Sue. Kobe Bryant, Diana Taurasi. For every Michael Jordan a Lisa Leslie.
Every insufferable, couch potato chip, sexist fans who unlike a Suffragette doesn’t believe women deserves equal pay needs to check their pockets…yep like Rakim said that’s nothing but lint. Now paid in full these women deserve this and more like diversity at the Oscars. Just as good as the men like Michelle Wie (she’s not the logos sons wife people) golfing with the guys of you claim you’re “woke” on social media but can’t wake up to this then you’re about as woke as still in bed gone half 12 in the afternoon. It feels like all those trumped up people who had a problem with a female ‘Ghostbusters’ reboot. Or those old men who would rather bully a 17 year old girl with Aspergers online than believe in the actual happenings of climate change.
Sure there’s an argument that sportspeople shouldn’t be paid these ridiculous amounts of money. But the point is if the men get paid this much then why shouldn’t the women?
This should have happened a long time ago. But at least it’s happening now.
It’s about time.
Working mothers are also finally getting their due in a groundbreaking deal on this date. Players will receive a salary whilst on maternity leave with an additional new childcare stipend. Whilst up to $60,000 of progressive family planning benefits for veteran players for costs for adoption, surrogacy, oocyte cryopreservation, fertility and more. No longer will go hard greats like Skylar Diggins-Smith have to play whilst pregnant and hide it to protect herself whilst the CBA lists it as a “condition”.
Perks of the game that the men have had for years and the world class women deserve just as such also include individual hotel rooms for players, more mandatory leg room on flights (how important is this for basketball players? The NBA would cry personal foul if the King and them would be forced to fly economy), and further for the finances, off-season job opportunities with league partners that along with the salary rise will mean that WNBA players won’t, overplayed and underpaid have to go overseas in the off-season to earn more money to make ends meet in foreign leagues. Something which has been a conditioning condition and pay for play issue since the leagues inaugural inception.
And let’s not forget about the players mental health too in major improvements across the board and world to an issue still surrounded with stigma despite the lengths taken and measures made. More resources will be offered in addition to the adoption of a Nutrition Council that will aid peak performance by offering players a commitment to this optimization.
But it’s probably the stand made by the WNBA and the CBA against violence to women which is the most important. Ending domestic and all sorts of violence to women which has happened to players around the league and still happens everyday, effecting everyone needs to end NOW like it should have never happened. It seems like such a ridiculously obvious thing to say…but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be said.
Again and again until we don’t have to.
The wide world has finally met the standards of the women’s game and league on the way to leveling the playing field. More of the same…do we really need to add the please now?
Betting on sporting events is a losers game. But betting on women-like the ones in this league-is a sure thing.
The game changed for real today.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander 20 Pts, 20 Rebs, 10 Asts first Canadian NBA triple-double since 2006
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (Hamilton, ON) became only the second Canadian basketball player in NBA history to record a triple-double — and the first in nearly 14 years, since Steve Nash in 2006.
Gilgeous-Alexander racked-up 20 points, career-high 20 rebounds and 10 assists in the 117-104 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves. The former one-and-done Kentucky Wildcat continued his efficient campaign shooting 8-of-12 field goals, connecting 2-of-3 triples and 2-of-2 from the foul-line.
Steve Nash recorded three triple-doubles in his illustrious 18-year career, the last one on April 19, 2006 — Nash finished with 16 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds.
The 20 rebounds is also a record-high by a Canadian guard and only the second 20/20 double-double by a Canadian — Jamaal Magloire notched a 22 point, 21 rebound game against the Toronto Raptors’ on March 21, 2004.
Most rebounds by a Canadian in the NBA
Samuel Dalembert (Montreal, QC) holds the record for the most rebounds in a NBA game with 23 against the Golden State Warriors on March 20, 2009. Followed by Magloire 22 and Tristan Thompson with 21.
Gilgeous-Alexander becomes the youngest guard to record 20-20-10 stat-line and joins Russell Westbrook as the only guards with a 20-point, 20-rebound triple-double over the last 30 seasons. He is also the youngest player in NBA history with a 20-rebound triple-double, passing Shaquille O’Neal.
RJ Barrett became the first Canadian basketball player to record a triple-double at the NCAA level in nearly 35 years during his lone freshman season with the Duke Blue Devils.
The OKC Thunder continue their playoff push with their 18 victory in the last 25 games and currently sit in 7th place in the western conference.
The Canadian guard is currently averaging 20 points, 5.3 rebounds and 2.7 assists — shooting 46.4% from the floor, 33.6% from three-pointers and 81.6% from the foul-line while turning the ball over just 1.9 per game.
Canada NBA All-Star Drought
The 2020 NBA All-star game in Chicago is less than month away and as it currently stands, Gilgeous-Alexander doesn’t currently rank as one the top fan vote earners in a guard heavy western conference. Nevertheless, the Canadian stud could end Canada’s eight year NBA all-star game drought by earning a coach’s selection.
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