Wanderlei Silva admits taking banned substance

June 18, 2014 – 5:18 am by Ryan Phillips
    Wanderlei Silva

In a bizarre story a few weeks ago, UFC fighter Wanderlei Silva comically avoided taking a drug test by simply leaving the gym he was working out at and running away from the test collector. Well, on Tuesday he admitted to avoiding that May 24 drug test because he was taking banned substances at the time.

The 37-year-old Silva went before the Nevada State Athletic Commission at an “information gathering” hearing on Tuesday and admitted wrongdoing. He was immediately suspended by the organization. Silva’s lawyer claims the fighter was taking diuretics at the time of the test.

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Video: U.S. fans react to John Brooks goal

June 17, 2014 – 8:39 pm by Ryan Phillips
    John Brooks goal reaction

We all remember this video of fans reacting to Landon Donovan’s extra time goal against Algeria that sent the United States through to the knockout round of the 2010 World Cup. It was a fantastic shot of joyous, spontaneous reactions that showed soccer’s growing presence and popularity in America. Well, we may have found the 2014 version.

When 21-year-old defender John Brooks scored in the 86th minute to give the U.S. a 2-1 lead over Ghana on Monday fans all over the world reacted in the same manner. When Brooks headed home Graham Zusi’s perfectly placed corner the reaction was instant. There was jumping and cheering, drinks were spilled, as were a few tears and there were hugs. Oh were there hugs.

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Remembering Tony Gwynn and what he meant to me and my city

June 16, 2014 – 10:59 am by Ryan Phillips
    Tony Gwynn

Tony Gwynn was one of the best hitters baseball has ever seen. There was nothing a pitcher could throw at him that he wouldn’t figure out how to get his bat on. He just found ways to not let anything beat him when he was at the plate. On Monday morning the sad news broke that he had finally run into something he couldn’t overcome.

Tony Gwynn, Mr. Padre, passed away Monday at the age of 54 after a long and courageous battle with cancer.

I grew up in San Diego and had the privilege of watching Gwynn lay waste to opposing pitchers for most of his remarkable 20-year career. In an era when power was emphasized, Gwynn was a maestro with his bat, using savvy, not raw strength to produce offense. The man won eight batting titles, topped 200 hits five times and finished his career with 3,141 knocks.

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Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard doing better than his ’11 Draft classmates

June 16, 2014 – 2:15 am by Hickey

kawhi

Sage veterans Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili have been the heart of San Antonio’s championship dynasty, but it was young gun Kawhi Leonard who helped the Spurs push through for the franchise’s fifth NBA title. The third-year player from San Diego State averaged 17.8 points per game on 61 percent shooting from the field in the title series.

It’s quite the feel-good story. At 22, Leonard is the youngest Finals MVP since Duncan in 1999. He’s also just the sixth Finals MVP who didn’t make the All-Star Game the year he won the award. Chauncey Billups was the last player to earn that distinction in 2004. And it was a stirring bounce-back from last year’s Finals, when Leonard’s missed free throw in the waning moments of Game 6 helped set up Ray Allen’s game-tying three that sent the game into overtime. The Heat won that game and the next to seemingly put a fork in San Antonio’s last great chance at a title.

So who was picked ahead of Leonard in the 2011 NBA Draft? We’re glad you asked, though most of the guys on this list probably wish you wouldn’t have.

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Cleveland Cavaliers doctors clear Joel Embiid

June 13, 2014 – 5:58 pm by Ryan Phillips
    Joel Embiid

Kansas center Joel Embiid has become the odds-on favorite to be the No. 1 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft over the past few weeks. The Cleveland Cavaliers have the top pick in this year’s draft and rumors have persisted that they preferred Embiid over both college teammate Andrew Wiggins and Duke’s Jabari Parker. The only issue surrounding Embiid was his health as he suffered a back injury late in his only season of college basketball. But now it looks like that won’t be an issue.

Initially a report surfaced that claimed Embiid’s physical with Cavs doctors did not go well. Based on what we’ve been hearing about Embiid’s workouts, that came as a huge shock. That initial report has now been countered by a report that says his back is fine and Cleveland actually cleared him. The first report was likely a smokescreen by the Cavs to deter the Milwaukee Bucks from possibly selecting Embiid with the No. 2 pick.

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Video: John Oliver eviscerates FIFA and the 2014 World Cup

June 11, 2014 – 4:36 am by Ryan Phillips
    John Oliver

If you haven’t been watching “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” you should really start. The ex-Daily Show correspondent has been fantastic during the first season of his new Sunday night HBO show. His protracted rants about one subject each week have been absolutely perfect and this Sunday was no exception. Oliver’s target this week? FIFA and the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

After the jump you’ll see a 13-plus minute clip of him ranting about the topic that is pure gold. The man knows how to rant…trust us, we would know. His evisceration of FIFA covers a ton of topics, including: bribery, Sepp Blatter’s idiocy, protests in Brazil, the organization’s ridiculous “non-profit” label, the 2022 World Cup in Qatar and how FIFA is actually enabling the deaths of migrant laborers.

Since it’s HBO, he drops an f-bomb or two, so it may not be safe for work if you don’t have headphones. That said, watch the hell of out this clip. Then start over and watch it again.

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Landon Donovan ad has terrible (or terrific) timing

June 11, 2014 – 1:20 am by Hickey

donovan sunburn

I finally got around to reading Sports Illustrated’s May 26 profile of Adam Silver, but amazingly that wasn’t the thing that stuck out the most in the magazine. And not their profile on Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews, either. Which is stunning given that both pieces were superbly done.

So what could possibly be more eye-catching? An unfortunately timed ad starring one Landon Donovan.

Clearly put together by people who (rightfully) did not conceive of a scenario where Donovan wouldn’t make the U.S. World Cup team, the ad identifies the shirtless, pantsless, chest-hairless player as “Landon Donovan, U.S. Soccer Star.”

This, planned out quite meticulously in advance, no doubt, ran the very week he was cut from the national team. Doh.

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Katharine McPhee pictures: The best of the newly-single singer

June 11, 2014 – 12:00 am by Ryan Phillips
    Katharine McPhee

I don’t know about you, but I’ve always been a big fan of Katharine McPhee. And no, for not her music or her acting. The 30-year-old became famous thanks to a runner-up showing on American Idol in 2006, but almost as soon as she got famous, she was locked down and married to some random dude who was almost 20 years older than her.

But good news everyone, Ms. McPhee has officially filed for divorce from her husband, which means she’s back on the market. Here is a collection of her best pictures to celebrate.

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