TIME brazil

Brazilian Police Clash With Protesters Ahead of the World Cup

Hundreds of demonstrators protest against money spent on Brazil's World Cup preparations in São Paulo on Thursday, May 15, 2014. Andre Penner—AP

Riot police in the Brazilian cities of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro fired tear gas at thousands of protesters on Thursday, as demonstrations against the cost of hosting soccer's World Cup resumed in Brazil

Riot police in the Brazilian cities of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro fired tear gas at thousands of protesters on Thursday, as demonstrations against the cost of hosting soccer’s World Cup resumed in Brazil.

Some protesters torched tires, blocked roads and hurled rocks, the BBC reports. Local media reported that 234 people were arrested within a 24-hour period.

Protesters argue that the tournament’s $15 billion tab should instead be used for social projects and housing.

The government argues that the event will bring economic benefits and downplayed the relevance of Thursday’s demonstrations by pointing at their coincidence with labor strikes.

“I’ve seen nothing that is related to the (World) Cup,” said Brazilian Sports Minister Aldo Rebelo. “There’s no reason to panic ahead of receiving 3 million Brazilian tourists and 600,000 foreign tourists.”

The World Cup kicks off on June 12.

[BBC]

TIME Education

California Wants to Limit Full-Contact Drills in High School Football

The state assembly has passed a bill through to the state senate that would limit full-contact football drills in high schools in response to parents' concerns about the risks associated with concussions, like early-onset dementia long-term brain damage

California’s state assembly on Thursday passed legislation to limit full-contact drills in high school football, in a response to parental concerns about the risks of concussions leading to long-term brain damage and early-onset dementia.

The bill has the support of the California Interscholastic Federation and the American Academy of Pediatrics, and has caught the attention of the White House, which on Thursday announced plans for a May 29 conference on concussions and youth sport safety.

If passed in the state senate, the bill will limit practices involving game-speed tackling to twice-weekly 90-minute sessions, and ban such drills completely in the offseason.

[AP]

TIME NBA

The NBA Fines Doc Rivers For Being Correct

Doc Rivers Clippers NBA
Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers yells to his team during the second half of Game 7 in an opening-round NBA basketball playoff series against the Golden State Warriors on May 3, 2014. Mark J. Terrill—AP

A Justified rant costs the Clippers coach $25,000. Maybe the refs should be paying the penalties

The NBA fined Los Angeles Clippers coach Doc Rivers $25,000 today for being correct. Rivers was justifiably irked Tuesday night after the refs blew two calls in the process of awarding the Oklahoma City Thunder the ball with 11.3 seconds remaining in their playoff game Tuesday night. OKC guard Reggie Jackson appeared to have lost the ball after the Clippers’ Matt Barnes took a swipe at it. The Thunder went on to win 105-104.

In the press conference afterward, Rivers said: “Everybody knows it was our ball. I think, the bottom line is, they thought it was a foul, and they made up for it… let’s take away replay system because that’s our ball and we win the game. And we got robbed because of that call.”

Using the phrase “we got robbed” in the NBA is shorthand for “please lighten my wallet by 25 large.” The league doesn’t allow coaches to question its integrity. But Rivers wasn’t questioning the integrity of the refs, merely their competency. This was a case of, who touched the ball last before it went out of bounds. And replays showed it was Jackson. Oh, wait a minute, they didn’t. At least according to the NBA, which issued a statement saying that the call couldn’t be reversed because there has to be “clear and conclusive” evidence. Apparently, Mr. Magoo was reviewing the replay.

What was perfectly clear, even before the controversy, was that the Clippers had put themselves in a perfect position to blow the game. They surrendered a 13 point lead in the last 3:30, and their wonder guard Chris Paul fouled Russell Westbrook while he was shooting a three not long after Paul coughed the ball up in the play leading to the controversy. Rivers admitted as much, but absent that call his team still had a chance to claim the victory. This was another great game in a great series and it certainly deserved great refereeing— or at least better refereeing than it got. Fining Rivers for pointing that out only makes it the issue that much more glaring

TIME Crime

Aaron Hernandez Faces New Double Murder Charges

Aaron Hernandez Murder
Aaron Hernandez sits in the courtroom of the Attleboro District Court during his hearing on Aug. 22, 2013 in North Attleboro, Mass. Jared Wickerham—Getty Images

Hernandez is accused of killing two people before he played in the 2012-2013 season.

Former NFL star Aaron Hernandez was indicted on two new counts of first-degree murder Thursday, a year after he was charged with the shooting death of 27-year-old Odin Lloyd and released from the New England Patriots.

In the new indictment, Hernandez is accused of killing Daniel Abreu and Safiro Furtado in Boston on July 16, 2012, Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley said at a news conference Thursday. The two men were stopped at a traffic light in a car with three others, Conley said, when an SUV drove up and someone in the back seat shot at them.

Hernandez, 24, had an encounter with the victims at a club the night of the shooting, Conley said. The former tight end was also charged with three counts of armed assault with intent to murder.

Hernandez is currently being held awaiting trial on charges that he and two accomplices shot Lloyd last June. He has pleaded not guilty in that case.

TIME Basketball

Donald Sterling Lashes Out at Obama in Latest Leaked Recording

The L.A. Clippers' disgraced owner slams President Obama in the latest leaked recording, saying he should get “all the full facts first" before being critical

Disgraced Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling says he’ll take his fight all the way to the Supreme Court before selling his stake in the team.

In a lengthy audio recording of a discussion between Sterling and the hip hop artist Maserati obtained by the Daily Mail, Sterling denies he’s a racist and slams his critics, including President Barack Obama, for, he says, failing to get “all the full facts first.”

“I think that was such bad judgment on his part to make a flippant comment from Malaysia,” Sterling said of the president. “He’s a good guy, and I like him, I just think everybody wants to get into the act, is that it?”

Sterling says he will not sell his stake in the Clippers, vowing to fight all the way to the Supreme Court if necessary. He also said he refuses to pay the $2.5 million fine levied on him by the NBA.

In segments of the 1.5 hour conversation, Sterling, whose wife said recently she believes he suffers from dementia, sounds confused. When discussing V. Stiviano — the woman who he is heard making racist remarks to in the recoding that led to his lifetime ban from the NBA — Sterling, who is Jewish, fumbles trying to remember the holocaust. “‘She said blacks are treated in California like where all the Jews were killed, you know what I mean? Where was that? The, um, you know.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Sterling claims to have received support in the Los Angeles black community. He also describes how he met Stiviano.

“I’m embarrassed that a man 80 years old would try to make it with a girl. But I tried,” he said. “This chick was something else, so I would say anything to her. She was an animal and to deal with her was even harder.”

[Daily Mail]

TIME Football

Michael Sam Docuseries Coming to the Oprah Network

Michael Sam Oprah
St. Louis Rams defensive end Michael Sam attends an introductory press conference at Rams Park in Earth City, Mo. on May 13, 2014. Chris Lee—Landov

Brought to you by the same film team that did Lindsay Lohan’s show Lindsay, the cable network's new docuseries will follow the first openly gay football player drafted to the NFL through his start with the St. Louis Rams

Oprah Winfrey’s OWN cable network announced Wednesday it’s creating a docuseries that will follow Michael Sam, the first openly gay man drafted to the National Football League, as he starts his career with the St. Louis Rams.

“Like every player out there working to make a team right now, my focus is on playing football to the very best of my ability,” said Sam. “I am determined. And if seeing my story helps somebody else accept who they are and to go for their dreams too, that’s great. I am thankful to Oprah for her support and excited to work together.”

Sam, who came out publicly in February, was drafted to the Rams May 10.

“We are honored that Michael is trusting us with his private journey in this moment that has not only made history but will shape it forever,” said Winfrey. “The next real-life story we follow in The Untitled Michael Sam Project promises to spark valuable, important discussion on life in America today. Acceptance and illumination start here.”

The team behind the untitled Michael Sam project is the same that created Lindsay Lohan’s show “Lindsay.”

[The Hollywood Reporter]

 

 

 

 

TIME feminism

Male and Female Athletes From Nations with Empowered Women Win More Medals

Olympics Day 13 - Women's Football Final - Match 26 - USA v Japan
Abby Wambach during the Women's Football gold medal match on Day 13 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at Wembley Stadium on Aug. 9, 2012 in London. Jamie Squire—Getty Images

A nation's Summer Olympics success can be predicted by how well it ranks in women's reproductive health, political empowerment and participation in the workforce, a new study finds

Women’s empowerment is a good predictor of a country’s medal count in the Summer Olympics, a new study says.

While past studies on the Olympics have found that wealthier and more populous nations tend to claim more medals, a study published in Journals of Sports Economics found that strength and autonomy of women in a given nation also influences how many bronze, silver and gold medals that country takes home.

Researchers from Grand Valley State University looked at 130 nations in the Summer Olympics, the world’s largest elite sports competition, from 1996 to 2012. They compared each nation’s medal count to their Gender Inequality Index (GII). The GII measures women’s reproductive health, political empowerment and participation in the labor force. The Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark and Switzerland rank at the top of the 2012 GII. The United States ranks 47th. Each country receives a score that ranges from 0 (no inequality between genders) to 100 (extreme inequality).

Researchers found a 10-point decrease in GII corresponded with female athletes winning 1.5 extra medals and—more surprising—male athletes winning one extra medal in the Summer Olympics. This was true even when the researchers controlled for population and wealth.

The benefit to male athletes was a surprise, and we don’t really understand why this occurs,” head researcher Aaron Lowen said in a statement. “One idea is that societies that bring women into the workforce generate wealth in ways that are not captured with traditional wealth measures, such as gross domestic product. These societies may afford both men and women greater opportunities for recreational and personal pursuits, including elite athletic training and competition.”

Notably, researchers also discovered that women athletes in the United States didn’t benefit from what they called the “Title IX effect.” Title IX prohibits sexual discrimination in academics and other activities, including athletics, on campuses across the nation. Many have argued that the federal law has led to growth in the number of female athletics. Yet Title IX didn’t give American women a leg up over their international competition.

Clearly, U.S. women have been remarkably successful in soccer, basketball and many other sports. But once we incorporated other key predictors of Olympic success—population, wealth and women’s empowerment—we found little evidence that U.S. women are exceptional in comparison to women from other countries or even U.S. men,” says Robert Deaner, a co-author of the study. “This doesn’t mean Title IX hasn’t been important for U.S. women—instead it suggests that other countries must have their own means of supporting elite women’s sports,” he said.

TIME Media

Michael Sam: I Was Going to Wait to Come Out

Michael Sam
Michael Sam PEOPLE

In an exclusive interview with PEOPLE, the first openly gay football player to be drafted by an NFL team says he was originally planning on waiting until after the league's draft to reveal his sexuality. Sam was picked in the seventh round by the St. Louis Rams

In an exclusive interview with PEOPLE magazine, recent St. Louis Rams draft pick Michael Sam said he originally planned to come out as gay after the NFL draft.

“When I came out in February, it actually wasn’t the time I wanted to come out,” Sam said. “I was going to come out to my [pro] team—whoever drafted me.”

Sam, whose February announcement led to him becoming the first openly gay player to be drafted to the NFL, also shared that he felt blessed to have the support of his teammates at the University of Missouri. “Everyone in that program was so respectful of me, I wanted to give them all I got,” Sam said.

Read more at PEOPLE.

 

 

 

TIME NBA

Magic Johnson Says Donald Sterling Is ‘Living in the Stone Age’

NBA legend Magic Johnson said the L.A. Clippers owner's racist comments targeting him prompted "disbelief," but added "I just feel sorry for him"

Magic Johnson struck back at embattled Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling in a new interview, calling Sterling “delusional” for his racist criticism of the NBA legend.

“Am I upset? Of course,” Johnson said during the interview, which aired Tuesday night on CNN. “But at the same time, I’m a God-fearing man and I’m going to pray for him and hope things work out for him.”

Johnson’s comments came as the NBA is trying to force Sterling to sell the Clippers in the wake of earlier racist remarks he made that surfaced last month. In those remarks, which sparked a national uproar when a recording of them was published by TMZ, Sterling criticized his then-girlfriend for publicly associating with black people, including Johnson. The recording, on which Sterling can be heard chastising her “not to bring [black people] to my games” and for for taking a since-deleted Instagram picture with Johnson, prompted the NBA to ban Sterling for life.

“I was in disbelief that he would say these things and then throw me into the situation,” Johnson said. “I don’t know the young lady. I barely know Donald. Now I’m caught in the middle of this love or affair or whatever they have.”

In what was supposed to be an apology interview that aired Monday night, Sterling strangely struck out at Johnson again, a beloved figure in basketball circles, criticizing him for contracting HIV and not doing enough to help the black community.

“Well what kind of guy goes to every city, has sex with every girl, then he catches HIV, is that someone we want to respect and tell our kids about?” Sterling said. “I think he should be ashamed of himself. I think he should go in the background. But what does he do for the black people? He doesn’t do anything.”

Johnson said he felt compelled to answer: “I am one of the leaders of the black community. So I can’t let someone attack me and not respond.”

Johnson, who is part-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers and has been floated as a possible Clippers owner should the league succeed in forcing a sale, said he spoke with Sterling after the tape first surfaced, but stopped communicating with him after Sterling refused to apologize. “He asked me to go on the Barbara Walters show with him,” Johnson said. “I told him I wouldn’t do it. I told him the number one thing you need to do which you haven’t done is apologize to everyone.

“I was expecting an apology,” Johnson added. “The American public expected an apology.”

During the interview, Cooper replayed some of Sterling’s comments about Johnson, in which Sterling said Johnson had AIDS and “should be ashamed of himself ” (Johnson does not have AIDS, but is HIV-positive).

“I just feel sorry for him,” Johnson said. “I really do. It’s sad.”

When asked whether he wants to buy the Clippers, Johnson said that while he and his business partners would likely make a bid if Sterling is forced to sell, the team he really wants to own is the Los Angeles Lakers, where he was a Hall of Fame point guard.

“Just take the money [from the sale of the Clippers], go and enjoy your life,” Johnson advised Sterling. “You’re fighting a battle you can’t win.”

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