Troy Toarmina-USA TODAY Sports
*Excuses are a common thing these days, but they are still about as socially acceptable in the business world as wearing underwear on the outside of clothing.
But when it comes to some of our favorite professional athletes excuses are a way of life. They are often a buffer between what we want them to be, what they say they are, and who they really are as players. To be certain, reasons and excuses are not interchangeable but they are distant cousins.
A severe injury, for example, is a clear reason as to why a player might miss a game or not be able to perform to the standard we are used to seeing him perform at. But it is very difficult for the fan to figure out which is which at times. Yet we are to spend our hard earned money on athletes whose performances steadily decrease as their salaries increase?
Fans of the NBA brand of basketball remember the infamous Michael Jordan flu game versus the Utah Jazz in the 1997 NBA Finals, Willis Reed‘s Game 7 appearance in the 1970 NBA Finals against the mighty Los Angeles Lakers, and Isiah Thomas‘ 25-point third quarter burst against the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1988 Finals, while playing on a severely sprained ankle. With all the Herculean efforts fans have witnessed in this league people are used to seeing the very best persevere over insurmountable odds. I feel like it is high time to call out some folks on this one-those who have not have not displayed anything near that type of fortitude.
Those listed here are players and one franchise whose excuses are just about up. This slideshow is a list of several NBA players and one organization who have not lived up to their potential in the past and their excuses as to their incessant mediocrity have completely run out. The only thing that is stopping them from living up to their potential this season — barring injury of course — is themselves.
Read more at http://www.rantsports.com/nba/2013/10/15/5-nba-players-who-have-run-out-of-excuses/?xtpECkuVVl23zMRC.99
Ricardo A. Hazell is a freelance writer based in New York City. You may follow him on Twitter at NikosMightyDad or add him to your network on Google Plus.
*Last week was a big one for Reverend Al Sharpton.
The founder of the National Action Network (NAN) hosted the Trumpet Awards, giving trophys to such celebrities as Mike Tyson, Queen Latifah and behind the scenes big-wigs like sports agent Joel Sigel.
The evening featured laughs and acknowledgement of community and faith for all honorees who were able to attend and accept their awards. Also, the classic oratory styling of Rev. Al himself were on full display as he held the audience for nearly two hours.
On October 10th, a celebration was held for Sharpton himself as friends, family members and business associates alike intermingled at Studio 48 as the “grown and sexy” tripped the night away to some of the funkiest hits the 70s and 80s could offer.
Sharpton and friends came out to speak at the coronation of the evening. Watch video footage from both proceedings below.
*”Finding the Funk“ is the latest work from writer/director Nelson George.
It tells the often overlooked story of funk music and tracing it from its roots in Jazz through the 60s with such funkmasters as James Brown, and winds down through Hip-Hop and how the latter genre used, or usurped according to some, their musical inheritance.
The film features first hand commentary from such funkateers, if you will, as George Clinton, Bootsy Collins, D’Angelo, Sheila E and many more. “Finding the Funk” is narrated by none other than Mr. Ahmir-Khalib Thompson, commonly known by his funky name-Questlove.
Below is footage of Quest, writer/director Nelson George and the Godfather of the Funk Mr. George Clinton speaking to members of the media regarding the past, present and future of the funk.
Michael Kenneth Williams plays ‘Chalky White’ on HBO’s ‘Boardwalk Empire.’
HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire” has been a hit television series for the better part of three years and is gearing up to bring its African American characters away from the show’s peripheral and into the limelight as the character Chalky White begins his possible ascension with the acquisition of the Onyx Club on the Boardwalk.
Though he still is not considered Nucky Thompson’s equal, White (played by actor Michael Kenneth Williams) has the potential to become more than an also ran on the show. However, Season four of “Boardwalk Empire” also witnesses the introduction of two new characters who are pivotal to the story arc: Dr. Narcisse, played by actor Jeffrey Wright, and lounge singer Daughter Maitland, played by actress Margot Bingham.
I had the chance to speak with each of these performers regarding their respective characters while covering the red carpet at the 17th Annual Urbanworld Film Festival. The footage is below.
Watch “Boardwalk Empire” Sunday nights at 9pm on HBO
The cast (and director) of “Baggage Claim”
*The 17th Annual Urbanworld Film Festival was the latest incarnation of what has become a Mecca of black and urban film-drawing upon content featuring, created and funded by some brightest African Americans minds in entertainment.
Each year Urbanworld projects are becoming more and more mainstream, with artists who are recognized by broader demographic circles than ever before. As usual, the selection was as varied as the hues of the Diaspora.
This year a vast portion of the spotlight fell upon David E. Talbert’s “Baggage Claim” which featured a slew of entertainers who find themselves among black America’s favorite personalities: including Paula Patton, Derek Luke, Taye Diggs, Jill Scott, Ricky Smiley, Boris Kodjoe, Jenifer Lewis and many others. We have footage from the likes of Questlove, Jeffrey Wright (“Boardwalk Empire), Michael Kenneth Williams (Boardwalk Empire), Larenz Tate and more. In the meantime, check out the footage shot from the red carpet.
Below is footage from the red carpet featuring cast members Jennifer Lewis and Rickey Smiley, Jennifer Williams (formerly of “Basketball Wives”) and the director/writer of “Baggage Claim,” David Talbert
Photo: Stevie Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
The players of the NBA are arguably among the best all-around athletes in the world.
The cream often rises to the top and both the media and league combine to promote and market the attributes of the very best.
If your name isn’t Kobe Bryant or LeBron James, there is a strong possibility that only the most ardent of basketball aficionados will know even your name.
But the greatness of a player can only be measured against his or her contemporary peers. Without said peers, the attributes of the very best will go unrealized and under appreciated. With every NBA basketball game televised, there are legions of would-be Jordanites lamenting about their ability to take a spot from some of these guys. But there is a reason these guys are in the league.
This slideshow features some of the very best players that you may never have heard of. Some of the players I have selected are role players who are critical to their teams while others are young players who are just coming into their own. Others still are on the verge of superstardom. There’s a strong possibility I may have forgotten a hardwood soldier from your hometown squad, but I’ve only got 15 spots.
The players of the NBA are arguably among the best all-around athletes in the world. The cream often rises to the top and both the media and league combine to promote and market the attributes of the very best. If your name isn’t Kobe Bryant or LeBron James, there is a strong possibility that only the most ardent of basketball aficionados will know even your name.
Read more at http://www.rantsports.com/nba/2013/09/20/15-nba-studs-youve-probably-never-heard-of/?jEjm3OERCWfQ3611.99
EURweb.com Senior Contributor Ricardo A. Hazell expounds upon some of the hottest topics of the day in sports, film, and current affairs. His byline appeared in Bleacher Report from December 2012 until June 2013. He now talks NBA, NFL and NCAA football over at Rant Sports, and will continue to give his unique take on the matters of the day while interviewing some of black entertainment’s best and brightest here at EURweb.