Death of high school footballer re-ignites safety concerns

16 year-old Tyrell Cameron lost his life on the football field last week in a high school game while covering a punt in the 4th quarter.

16 year-old Tyrell Cameron lost his life on the football field last week in a high school game while covering a punt in the 4th quarter.

By Charles Glover, Jr.

An unfortunate injury caused during a high school football game resulted in the death of 16 year-old player Tyrell Cameron on Friday September 4, 2015. Cameron died later that night after breaking his neck during a routine punt coverage in the fourth quarter of a Louisiana high school football game.

Johnny Ogden, an investigator with the parish coroner’s office told USA Today Sports that “Life-saving measures were performed and CPR was performed, but he was pronounced dead (at the hospital).”

De'Antre Turman, 16, also lost his life on the high school football field in 2013.

De’Antre Turman, 16, also lost his life on the high school football field in 2013.

As Cameron’s family, coaches and teammates mourn the loss of a young life, Coach Barry Sebren expressed his team’s grief, saying: “It was a routine play. It was such a tragedy, so unfortunate. We’re gonna miss him. He’s a great player and even better person. That’s what we’re going to miss most about Tyrell.”

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The tragic accident mirrors an eerily similar incident in 2013 where De’Antre Turman of Creekside High School in Union City, Georgia, died while playing in a scrimmage game after he tackled another player. Dr. Daniel Sciubba, an assistant professor of Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins University, called Turman’s death, “a very freak accident.” Sciubba added, “It’s just the fact that people are hitting each other as hard as they can and [the neck] area is not immobilized.”

Concussion. a Sony Pictures film starring Will Smith, will be a story about a doctor who uncovers the potential harm from concussions and the difficulty the doctor had in sharing his findings.

Concussion. a Sony Pictures film starring Will Smith, will be a story about a doctor who uncovers the potential harm from concussions and the difficulty the doctor had in sharing his findings.

These incidents are extreme examples of the inherent danger of playing such a violent sport, but the larger question is how are players being protected? Youth football is one of the most popular activities provided to youngsters but questions persist about player safety. Sport neurologist Dr. Anthony Alessi commented recently on the subject stating, “We know that the brain is not fully developed at the youth level. The most successful players in the NFL did not play youth football.”

While officials at all levels of football have been asked to address concerns from fans and participants, expectations increase that the NFL take the lead on player safety. As the NFL continues to deal with lawsuits from former players who maintain that the NFL did not do enough to protect them during their careers, the league has issued the following statement recently:

“We are encouraged by the ongoing focus on the critical issue of player health and safety. We have no higher priority. We all know more about this issue then we did 10 or 20 years ago. As we continue to learn more, we apply those learnings to make our game and players safer.”

Adrian Coxson announced his retirement after suffering the affects of a concussion this NFL off-season.

Adrian Coxson announced his retirement after suffering the effects of a concussion this NFL off-season.

The regular season has begun for high school and colleges across the country and the NFL regular season will begin this Thursday. While there is plenty of excitement for the game, there are some who are having a difficult time balancing their desire for entertainment from this collision sport as more information surfaces about the potential for serious injury for those gifted players. Sony Pictures’ upcoming film, Concussion, featuring Will Smith, will depict the hazards of concussions uncovered by a doctor with access to NFL players and the uphill battle he faced in getting the issue addressed.

Hopefully these tragic stories of aspiring NFL players and other young football players like Tyrell Cameron can inspire changes towards a safer but equally entertaining game.

It is unclear if  tragic stories of aspiring NFL players and other young football players like Tyrell Cameron can inspire changes towards a safer but equally entertaining game.

Meanwhile, this past Labor Day, former Green Bay Packers wide receiver Adrian Coxson, announced his retirement from football. Coxson expressed grave concerns for his health from a concussion he sustained in practice three weeks earlier. Coxson made this statement to the National Football Post:

“I’m retiring because I’m still having symptoms, and my health is more important to me than the game of football,” Coxson told . “It’s been recommended to me by two neurologists and two doctors to retire from football. This last [hit to my head] could be life-damaging. It has taken a great toll on me. This concussion was a bad one. A Grade 3 concussion is real serious.”

The fans of football and family members of players like Cameron, Turman, and Coxson will continue to support a sport they clearly enjoy. As millions more continue to enjoy football going forward, it is likely that greater safety measures will be implemented to allow  players to avoid  more tragic outcomes.–OnPointPress.net–

Charles Glover, Jr. is a senior writer and a licensed insurance professional partnered with HealthMarkets. Follow me @GloverIsGood on Twitter.com. Check out www.HealthMarkets.com/cglover for your free health insurance and life insurance quotes.

Serena Williams on a quest for calendar Grand Slam at U.S. Open

Serena Williams of the U.S. celebrates after defeating Russia's Vera Zvonareva in their women's singles tennis match at the All England Lawn Tennis Club during the London 2012 Olympic Games August 1, 2012. REUTERS/Sergio Moraes (BRITAIN - Tags: OLYMPICS SPORT TENNIS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

Serena Williams of the U.S. celebrates after defeating Russia’s Vera Zvonareva in their women’s singles tennis match at the All England Lawn Tennis Club during the London 2012 Olympic Games August 1, 2012. REUTERS/Sergio Moraes (BRITAIN – Tags: OLYMPICS SPORT TENNIS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

By Carmen Glover

The U.S. Open got underway today at the Arthur Ashe Stadium in Queens, New York amid an excited, palpable buzz of anticipation as the most dominant woman in sports, tennis superstar Serena Williams, pursues her first calendar Grand Slam.

While there has been a concerted effort to body shame Williams for her enviable, toned, alluring figure, Williams has been demure, celebrating her recent victories while pointedly ignoring detractors.

Serena Williams said she was having fun in her quest for the calendar Grand Slam at the U.S. Open in an interview with Good Morning America's Robin Roberts this morning.

Serena Williams said she was having fun in her quest for the calendar Grand Slam at the U.S. Open in an interview with Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts this morning.

“I’m having a good time,” Williams said this morning as she spoke to Robin Roberts of Good Morning America, while explaining that she is not subjecting herself to any pressure.

Williams’ valiant effort kicks off tonight as she plays her first round match against Vitalia Diatchenko. Maria Sharapova, who was not expected to offer much of a challenge to Williams, pulled out of the tournament on Sunday, August 30, claiming an injury. For Williams’ legion of fans, there’s only one thing to say: Go Serena!!–OnPointPress.net

 

States invest in lavish sports arenas but cut education budget

The owners of the Cleveland sports teams, (l - r) Indians owner Paul Dolan, Browns owner Jimmy Haslem, and Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, were successful in securing state taxpayer funds to bolster profits.

The owners of the Cleveland sports teams, (l – r) Indians owner Paul Dolan, Browns owner Jimmy Haslem, and Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, were successful in securing state taxpayer funds to bolster profits.

By Charles Glover, Jr.

According to a longstanding trend, sports ranks higher on states’ priority list than education in many places throughout this country, with Georgia, Ohio and Minnesota becoming the latest additions. While owners of sports teams are making record profits, citizens continue to complain about the inferior quality and rising costs associated with education. But, oddly, the issue has not been given much attention as politicians take their dog and pony show around the country, currying favor for more donations in their  presidential bids.

The cycle of low-income students and inferior education on students' future earning potential.

The cycle of low-income students and inferior education on students’ future earning potential.

Cleveland, for instance, in deciding to fund a new stadium at huge costs to the residents, is a microcosm of the juxtaposition of the values between the highest and lowest class citizens of a city. With unemployment and wages as the backdrop this July, Cleveland officials  decided taxpayers should absorb the cost of building the new, extravagant stadium. City officials argued that the construction project would help generate more jobs.

New York Times writer Michael Powell explained the situation pointing out, “[Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan] Gilbert and his fellow sports billionaires — Larry Dolan, who owns the Indians, and Jimmy Haslam, who owns the Browns — worked together to push through a referendum that extended a countywide “sin tax” on cigarettes, beer and liquor.” The outcome of this decision means that for the next 20 years, taxpayers in Cleveland and Cuyahoga County will contribute roughly $260 million into improvements for the city’s sports arenas and stadiums.

(l-r) Dolan, Haslem, and Gilbert find nothing wrong with asking taxpayers to help them make more money.

(l-r) Dolan, Haslem, and Gilbert find nothing wrong with asking taxpayers to help them make more money.

Meanwhile, this past March, the Cleveland school district proposed a budget that would cut costs by $3.4 million, much to the dismay of the Cleveland Teachers Union and parents in the city. Cleveland Teachers Union President David Quolke asked some searing questions in his consternation over the budget including, “Why are all of these struggling students being denied the resources and teachers they need to become successful? and, How are their academic needs being met?”

The answers to those questions remain unclear, but Cleveland Plain Dealer’s reporter Patrick O’Donnell discerns, “District officials said the cuts are just a prudent way to manage the district’s budget while they keep losing students. Though enrollment declines are still far less than in previous years, the district predicts it will lose 375 students for next school year.”

Cleveland Teachers Union members protest budget cuts for schools with red signs at the school board meeting while staff from the district's central office counter with their own green ones. (Photo courtesy of Patrick O'Donnell/The Plain Dealer)

Cleveland Teachers Union members protest budget cuts for schools with red signs at the school board meeting while staff from the district’s central office counter with their own green ones. (Photo courtesy of Patrick O’Donnell/The Plain Dealer)

The issue of state funds being misappropriated to benefit billionaires at the expense of poor, largely minority, inner-city children has raised alarm in some quarters but so far has not become the major issue that it should in the presidential campaign.

Numerous cities are facing a similar dynamic— inadequate funding for education and other public services but obscene amounts allocated to invest in lavish arenas and stadiums. As Deadspin’s Kevin Draper reports this July, “The Wisconsin Senate voted 21-10 to approve $250 million in public financing for a new arena for the Milwaukee Bucks.” While just a few days earlier in July, “Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker signed a state budget that includes cuts of $250 million to the University of Wisconsin system, among other cuts to public education funding.”

Other reports have stated that one of the owners of the Bucks has bought up property near to the projected site of the new stadium in anticipation of making a windfall on that prime real estate once the stadium is built. Meanwhile, classrooms are over-crowded and children in Wisconsin lack the educational investment that they need to succeed.

Madison District Public Schools will be among those affected by Gov. Walker's budget proposal of $250 million in cuts.

Madison District Public Schools will be among those affected by Gov. Walker’s budget proposal of $250 million in cuts.

These recent examples are following a pattern seen in other cities like Atlanta, Minneapolis, Los Angeles, Cincinnati and countless other towns which have professional teams that see the owners receive money that would be better served supporting the local citizens. The theory behind the support for these arenas and stadiums is they will help grow the economy by providing jobs and tourist attractions.

However, economist George Zeller cites studies that show that “The theory that all of these sports teams are producing a gigantic boom is completely false.” The school year has already started in some parts of this country and will resume shortly in other areas. The NFL regular season will also start in a few weeks. Which is a priority for you?.–OnPointPress.net–

Charles Glover, Jr. is a senior writer and a licensed insurance professional partnered with HealthMarkets. Follow me @GloverIsGood on Twitter.com. Check out www.HealthMarkets.com/cglover for your free health insurance and life insurance quotes.

Roger Goodell upholds Tom Brady’s 4-game suspension, reduces Le’Veon Bell’s

It will probably be a long time before we see Tom Brady (l) and Roger Goodell (r) smiling with each other again. Goodell upheld Brady's 4 game suspension today.

It will probably be a long time before we see Tom Brady (l) and Roger Goodell (r) smiling with each other again. Goodell upheld Brady’s 4 game suspension today.

By Charles Glover, Jr.

NFL news spread quickly today that Steelers star running back Le’Veon Bell had his 3 game suspension for his August 2014 arrest for DUI and marijuana possession reduced to 2 games as part of a settlement between the NFL and NFLPA. Bell accepted responsibility for his mistake and understood the impact it would have on him, as well as his team. Bell said on the first day of Steelers training camp, “Whatever the consequence is, I’ll take it. … You have to take the good with the bad.”

Unlike Brady, Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell accepted his punishment and cooperated with the NFL and had his suspension for DUI and marijuana possession reduced.

Unlike Brady, Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell accepted his punishment and cooperated with the NFL and had his suspension for DUI and marijuana possession reduced.

On the other hand, Tom Brady’s appeal was denied and his four-game suspension was upheld for his involvement in the “Deflategate” scandal. Part of the reason Brady’s appeal was denied, according to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, is Brady’s conduct.

Goodell said that Brady “went beyond a mere failure to cooperate in the investigation and supported a finding that he had sought to hide evidence of his own participation in the scheme.”

According to ESPN’s Mike Reiss, new evidence surfaced today that revealed “Brady instructed his assistant to destroy the cellphone he had been using since early November 2014, a period that included the AFC title game and the initial weeks of the subsequent investigation.”

FILE - In this Jan. 22, 2015, file photo, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady speaks at a news conference about the NFL investigation into deflated footballs, in Foxborough, Mass. An NFL investigation has found that New England Patriots employees likely deflated footballs and that quarterback Tom Brady was "at least generally aware" of the rules violations. The 243-page report released Wednesday, May 6, 2015, said league investigators found no evidence that coach Bill Belichick and team management knew of the practice. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

FILE – In this Jan. 22, 2015, file photo, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady speaks at a news conference about the NFL investigation into deflated footballs, in Foxborough, Mass. An NFL investigation has found that New England Patriots employees likely deflated footballs and that quarterback Tom Brady was “at least generally aware” of the rules violations. The 243-page report released Wednesday, May 6, 2015, said league investigators found no evidence that coach Bill Belichick and team management knew of the practice. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

The NFL also went to New York Federal Court and filed a suit to have their decision affirmed by the court in a move to circumvent the possible appeal to federal court by Brady and his legal team.

Meanwhile pundits insist that “Deflategate” in no way tarnishes Brady’s legacy. However, pundits might feel differently if Brady played another sport, like baseball, for instance.

Brady and the Patriots have been penalized more for cheating than any other team since 2000, while also winning more Super Bowls than any other team during the same span. Coincidence? You be the judge.–OnPointPress.net–

Charles Glover, Jr. is a senior writer and a licensed insurance professional partnered with HealthMarkets. Follow me @GloverIsGood on Twitter.com. Check out www.HealthMarkets.com/cglover for your free health insurance and life insurance quotes.

Mexico defeats Jamaica, 3-1, for CONCACAF Gold Cup

Darren Mattocks scored Jamaica's lone goal in the CONCACAF Gold Cup final. The Reggae Boyz lost 3;1 against Mexico.

Darren Mattocks scored Jamaica’s lone goal in the CONCACAF Gold Cup final. The Reggae Boyz lost 3;1 against Mexico.

By Carmen Glover

Mexico defeated Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz in the CONCACAF Gold Cup final at the Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia on Sunday, July 26, delivering a crushing blow to the excited Jamaican fans who cheered on their team in a match that was too brutal to watch.

In what appeared to be a lopsided pairing, Mexico scored all three goals before Darren Mattocks mercifully spared the Reggae Boyz the embarrassment of total annihilation by scoring Jamaica’s lone goal in the seventy-ninth minute.

Jamaica and Mexico faced off at the Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia for the CONCACAF Gold Cup, which Mexico won 3-1.

Jamaica and Mexico faced off at the Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia for the CONCACAF Gold Cup, which Mexico won 3-1.

But Mattocks’ efforts were too little, too late and Jamaican fans who crowded into the stadium, eager to see glimmers of the dominant team that trounced the USA men’s team, were denied their desired outcome.

As Mexico’s fans celebrated jubilantly, Jamaica’s fans ended up shell-shocked, leaving the stadium dejected, angry and bitterly disappointed, asking themselves the perennial question: What’s next for the Reggae Boyz?

Panama beat the US s men’s team on Saturday, taking third place-OnPointPress.net.

In historic win, Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz thrashes the US men’s team, 2-1

Giles Barnes, striker for Jamaica's Reggae Boyz, scored the second goal for Jamaica against the USA.

Giles Barnes, striker for Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz, scored the second goal for Jamaica against the USA.

By  Ephieum Allen

In an historic display of football dominance, Jamaica’s exciting team, the Reggae Boyz, delivered a resounding beating to the USMNT in Atlanta, Georgia this evening, July 22, to qualify for the semi-final of the CONCACAF Gold Cup. With the victory, the Reggae Boyz are automatic qualifiers for the FIFA Confederations Cup.

Ryan Thompson, the Reggae Boyz' goalkeeper, delivered for the team against the US men's team.

Ryan Thompson, the Reggae Boyz’ goalkeeper, delivered for the team against the US men’s team.

The match began with the Reggae Boyz vigorously attacking the US team for the first 15 minutes then the US responded by attacking the Reggae Boyz for a few minutes.

Jamaica’s first goal was scored by Darren Mattocks in the thirty-first minute. Mattocks headed the ball, which hit the left side post and went across to the other side, connecting on a beautiful goal.

Darren Mattocks of Jamaica's Reggae Boyz started the game by delivery a blistery goal against the USA team.

Darren Mattocks of Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz started the game by delivery a blistery goal against the USA team.

Moments later, in the thirty- sixth minute, Giles Barnes scored the second goal with a free kick inside the 18-yard box which rocketed to the roof of the net, leaving US goal keeper, dazed and confused, with no chance of recovery.

Jamaica bullied the US for the final 15 minutes, leaving the USMNT defenseless, overmatched, outclassed and outplayed in every domain possible. Within the first five minutes of the second half, the US countered with a shot from inside the 18-yard box, which was too hot for Jamaican goalkeeper Ryan Thompson to handle, so he blocked the shot and it went directly into the path of US midfielder Michael Bradley who scored the sole goal for the US.

US goalkeeper Brad Guzan is stunned out of his mind by the Reggae Boys' brilliance and dominance.

US goalkeeper Brad Guzan is stunned out of his mind by the Reggae Boyz’ brilliance and dominance.

The Jamaican victory is in contrast to the Reggae Boyz’ performance in the recently concluded Copa America.  On route to playing the decisive game against the US for the Gold Cup, Jamaica lost to Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay in the Copa America tournament. Nonetheless, the Reggae Boyz were considered a formidable force to reckon with, which the US team discovered, much too late.

 USA Head Coach Jurgen Klinsmann

A dejected USA Head Coach Jurgen Klinsmann, watches helplessly as his team is soundly defeated by the Reggae Boyz of Jamaica in the Gold Cup semi-final match in Atlanta, Ga on July 22, 2015.

Jurgen Klinsmann, the coach for the USMNT, said, prior to the match, that the game against the Reggae Boyz was the “most important tournament for the US this year.”

The second semi-final game is now underway with Mexico going up against Panama. The winner of that match will face the Reggae Boyz in Philadelphia on Sunday, July 26–OnPointPress.net.

Dominance in women’s sports doesn’t lead to equal pay

Serena Williams is more dominant in her sport than any other athlete. Or is she? Only a couple can challenge her for that title and their all women. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

Serena Williams is more dominant in her sport than any other athlete. Or is she? Only a couple can challenge her for that title and their all women. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

By Charles Glover, Jr.

2015 has been an incredible year for women in sports. Momentum has grown for more interest in women’s sports over the past several years as more female athletes have gained more recognition for their performance, not their appearance.

This development was clear on Sunday July 5, when the United States Women’s National Team (USWNT) defeated Japan’s National Team to win the 2015 Women’s World Cup to a record number of American viewers. In fact, over 25 million viewers tuned in to see the 5 – 2 victory by the USWNT, the most ever views for any soccer match in American history. Carli Lloyd scored the first hat trick in a Women’s World Cup Final and the USWNT won their third World Cup Title, the most in Women’s World Cup history.

The US Women's National Team won the 2015 World Cup in convincing fashion.

The US Women’s National Team won the 2015 World Cup in convincing fashion.

Fans are more interested than ever in other sports as well. Ronda Rousey has become one of the most recognizable sports figures over the past couple of years while becoming the face of UFC. Rousey’s popularity has largely been bolstered by her in-ring dominance during her mixed martial arts matches. Rousey’s last match against Cat Zingano lasted only 14 seconds and her previous match against Alexis Davis lasted only 16 seconds. Rousey and her patented armband submission have elevated interest in women’s mixed martial arts, while also allowing Rousey to grow her brand beyond the sport.

Rousey has appeared in feature films including “The Expendables 3,” “Furious 7,” and “Entourage,” giving credence to those who feel women should have the same opportunities to grow their brand and earn as men. Rousey is not letting success go to her head, stating “I want to retire undefeated and be known as one of the greatest of all time. That takes a lot more work than what I’ve done so far.”

Ronda Rousey is 11 - 0 in MMA matches and is dominating her sport like never before.

Ronda Rousey is 11 – 0 in MMA matches and is dominating her sport like never before.

Serena Williams is seeking her 21st major tournament victory this week in London at Wimbledon. If Williams is successful in the semifinals against Maria Sharapova, she will have a chance to win her third consecutive major tournament and hold all 4 major titles at the same time for the second time in her career. Williams is aware of her achievements but also recognizes the disparity between the coverage of the men’s matches versus the women’s matches. Williams made the following observation:

“Every year they’re two men’s and one women’s match on the main courts, Court number one as well as on Centre Court. We’re still fighting on that. We’ve made some progress. Hopefully we’ll keep making more progress. I don’t think it’s limited to Wimbledon. We have this problem at a lot of different tournaments. Pretty much most of the tournaments that are both men and women. So I think it doesn’t start here. It’s a huge conversation we have to have.”

Serena Williams has won the last 2 major tennis tournaments and is closing in on a 3rd straight this week at Wimbledon.

Serena Williams has won the last 2 major tennis tournaments and is closing in on a 3rd straight this week at Wimbledon.

In addition to equal recognition, these dominant athletes are seeking equal pay as well. The USWNT earned $2 million for winning the 2015 World Cup while their male counterparts earned $8 million after being knocked out early in the 2014 World Cup. Nita Chaudhary of the organization Ultraviolet, a women’s rights advocacy group, has started a petition to FIFA to pay women soccer players equally. The campaign has been well received, gathering roughly 60,000 signatures in the first 24 hours since the online petition was initiated. Ultraviolet founder Shaunna Thomas weighed in on the topic adding:

“It’s a testament to how popular women’s soccer actually is and a reflection of the fact that this is not some marginal side-show for FIFA.” But FIFA has described the push for equal pay for women as “nonsense.’

If women continue to dominate in their sports and attract large audiences, it will be a matter of time before there will be large raises in their future. So while the USWNT enjoyed their Tuesday victory parade in California and gear up for their Friday parade in New York City, the topic that will be foremost on their minds is equal pay for better-than-equal work and results.–OnPointPress.net–

Charles Glover, Jr. is a senior writer and a licensed insurance professional partnered with HealthMarkets. Follow me @GloverIsGood on Twitter.com. Check out www.HealthMarkets.com/cglover for your health insurance questions and concerns.

2015 NBA Draft will highlight trades, team-building

Karl-Anthony Towns (l) and Jahlil Okafor (r) are expected to be the first 2 players selected in the 2015 NBA Draft.

Karl-Anthony Towns (l) and Jahlil Okafor (r) are expected to be the first 2 players selected in the 2015 NBA Draft.

By Charles Glover, Jr.

The Minnesota Timberwolves have the first pick in tonight’s 2015 NBA Draft, yet the buzz surrounding the event centers on the potential moves that other lottery teams may make this evening. Draft day trades are usually a part of the action, but this year they threaten to upstage the draft as many of the routinely struggling teams seek to use their picks as leverage instead of building blocks.

Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak (l) and Knicks General Manager (r) have the daunting task of making draft day a success considering their teams recent history.

Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak (l) and Knicks General Manager (r) have the daunting task of making draft day a success considering their teams recent history.

The New York Knicks and Los Angeles Lakers have proven that they are incapable of building a contender through the draft and seem intent on parlaying their high draft picks into already proven players. The Philadelphia 76ers have spent the last several seasons rebuilding with invisible blueprints and still seem years away from contending.

The same could be said for the Sacramento Kings and the Timberwolves. This year teams seem more desperate to forego the ideal that draft picks can sturdy the franchise and gamble on players who have shown promise already in the NBA. It is clear a different tactic for improving these teams is necessary as the teams picking early in the draft have been consistently inept.

Former Ohio State guard D'Angelo Russell has as much potential as any player in this year's draft.

Former Ohio State guard D’Angelo Russell has as much potential as any player in this year’s draft.

This offseason happens to pair a slew of regularly struggling teams with high draft picks and perennial playoff teams looking to drastically improve for next year. The lack of  depth in this year’s draft class also helps drive the trade speculation. Karl-Anthony Towns and Jahlil Okafor are the two prospects everyone is sold on with D’Angelo Russell running a close third in terms of expected draft position.

With the level of uncertainty surrounding the draft class, expect at least a dozen trades to occur draft night as teams hope they can position themselves on Thursday night to meet personnel needs in time for the free agency period.–OnPointPress.net–

Charles Glover, Jr. is a senior writer and a licensed insurance agent at HealthMarkets. Follow me @GloverIsGood on Twitter.com. Check out www.HealthMarkets.com/cglover for your insurance questions and concerns.

Golden State Warriors win 2015 NBA title, Iguodala is MVP, after magical season

The Golden State Warriors shoed teamwork is needed to win NBA Finals 2015.

The Golden State Warriors showed that teamwork is needed to win NBA Finals 2015.

Stephen Curry has led his team with humility and poise.

Stephen Curry has led his team with humility and poise.

By Charles Glover, Jr.

The Golden State Warriors responded to a 2 -1 series deficit by winning three consecutive games to win their first NBA Championship since 1975 with a final score of 105 – 97 on Tuesday, June 16 in Cleveland. Regular season MVP Stephen Curry led the team with 25 points in the game, but the Warriors got great production from forwards Andre Iguodala and Draymond Green. Green notched a triple-double with 16 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists while Iguodala tied the team’s lead in scoring with 25 points and was named NBA Finals MVP.

Golden State Warriors' leader Stephen Curry has exemplified grace under pressure.

Golden State Warriors’ leader Stephen Curry has exemplified grace under pressure.

LeBron James finished the game with a near triple-double himself scoring 32 points with 18 rebounds and 9 assists. The Cavaliers clearly missed the injured Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love as they struggled to find consistent production throughout the series. The Warriors were able to capitalize on 16 turnovers by the Cavaliers to generate good ball movement that resulted in 28 team assists for the game.

Andre Iguodala was named NBA Finals MVP, beating out self-proclaimed "best player in the world" Lebron James from the Cleveland Caveliers.

Andre Iguodala was named NBA Finals MVP, beating out self-proclaimed “best player in the world” Lebron James from the Cleveland Cavaliers.

In the battle of first year NBA head coaches, the Warriors’ Steve Kerr was able to out-strategize the Cavaliers’ David Blatt. The series shifted after Kerr’s game 4 decision to start Iguodala and the Warriors never looked back. In all fairness to Blatt, the Cavaliers were not left with many options after losing Irving during game one, but the team still had their chances in the series. Cleveland has nothing to be ashamed of as they played valiantly through adversity and received extraordinary efforts from their leader James. One can only wonder what the series would have looked like if the Cavaliers were healthier.

Former Golden State Warriors Coach Mark Jackson set the foundation for the team's successful 2014-2015 season and NBA 2015 Finals win.

Former Golden State Warriors Coach Mark Jackson set the foundation for the team’s successful 2014-2015 season and NBA 2015 Finals win.

On the other hand, the win caps off a magical season for Curry, who becomes just the third point guard to earn regular season MVP honors and win the NBA title in the same season. The splash brothers, Curry and Klay Thompson, made their former NBA playing dads, Dell Curry and Mychal Thompson, proud just in time for Father’s Day.

Steve Kerr seems like a genius, in hindsight, for spurning the New York Knicks and choosing to lead the young Golden State Warriors team that former NBA coach and current TV Analyst Mark Jackson assembled.

Steve Kerr seems like a genius, in hindsight, for spurning the New York Knicks and choosing to lead the young Golden State Warriors team that former NBA coach and current TV Analyst Mark Jackson assembled.

There will be plenty of celebrating in the Bay Area in the next couple of days after a very exciting season. Congratulations to the Warriors, 2015 NBA champions, and congratulations to St. John’s product Mark Jackson who was instrumental in implementing the winning philosophy and culture that Kerr inherited in leading a young, talented, likeable team to the pinnacle of victory..–OnPointPress.net–

Charles Glover, Jr. is a sports aficionado and licensed insurance agent with HealthMarkets. Follow him on Twitter at @GloverIsGood.

Transcript of Sepp Blatter’s resignation gives important clues about future

Sepp Blatter announced that he will resign after arranging special committee of potential individuals who will run to lead the organization. His resignation is expected to take effect by the end of 2015 or early 2016.

Sepp Blatter announced that he will resign after arranging special committee of potential individuals who will run to lead the organization. His resignation is expected to take effect by the end of 2015 or early 2016.

By Carmen Glover

Although FIFA president Sepp Blatter announced on Tuesday, June 2 that he plans to resign, amid reports by the New York Times that he is the focus of a joint investigation by the FBI and Swedish officials for corruption, his resignation statement offers important clues about his view point of his legacy. The full transcript appears below:

“I  have been reflecting deeply about my presidency and about the forty years in which my life has been inextricably bound to Fifa and the great sport of football.
I cherish Fifa more than anything and I want to do only what is best for Fifa and for football. I felt compelled to stand for re-election, as I believed that this was the best thing for the organization. That election is over but Fifa’s challenges are not. Fifa needs a profound overhaul.

US informant Charles Blazer in happier times with FIFA President Sepp Blatter.

US informant Charles Blazer in happier times with FIFA President Sepp Blatter.

“While I have a mandate from the membership of Fifa, I do not feel that I have a mandate from the entire world of football – the fans, the players, the clubs, the people who live, breathe and love football as much as we all do at Fifa. Therefore, I have decided to lay down my mandate at an extraordinary elective Congress. I will continue to exercise my functions as Fifa President until that election.

Football (soccer to some), used to play the beautiful game.

Football (soccer to some), used to play the beautiful game.

“The next ordinary Fifa Congress will take place on 13 May 2016 in Mexico City.
This would create unnecessary delay and I will urge the Executive Committee to organize an Extraordinary Congress for the election of my successor at the earliest opportunity. This will need to be done in line with Fifa’s statutes and we must allow enough time for the best candidates to present themselves and to campaign.
“Since I shall not be a candidate, and am therefore now free from the constraints that elections inevitably impose, I shall be able to focus on driving far-reaching, fundamental reforms that transcend our previous efforts. For years, we have worked hard to put in place administrative reforms, but it is plain to me that while these must continue, they are not enough.

In Qatar, migrant workers have died at a rate of more than one per day, according to reports, as they prepare for the World Cup.

In Qatar, migrant workers have died at a rate of more than one per day, according to reports, as they prepare for the World Cup.

“The Executive Committee includes representatives of confederations over whom we have no control, but for whose actions Fifa is held responsible. We need deep-rooted structural change. The size of the Executive Committee must be reduced and its members should be elected through the Fifa Congress. The integrity checks for all Executive Committee members must be organized centrally through Fifa and not through the confederations. We need term limits not only for the president but for all members of the Executive Committee.

“I have fought for these changes before and, as everyone knows, my efforts have been blocked. This time, I will succeed. I cannot do this alone. I have asked Domenico Scala to oversee the introduction and implementation of these and other measures. Mr. Scala is the Independent Chairman of our Audit and Compliance Committee elected by the Fifa Congress. He is also the Chairman of the ad hoc Electoral Committee and, as such, he will oversee the election of my successor. Mr. Scala enjoys the confidence of a wide range of constituents within and outside of Fifa and has all the knowledge and experience necessary to help tackle these major reforms.

fifa world cup trophy

FIFA World Cup trophy

“It is my deep care for Fifa and its interests, which I hold very dear, that has led me to take this decision. I would like to thank those who have always supported me in a constructive and loyal manner as President of Fifa and who have done so much for the game that we all love. What matters to me more than anything is that when all of this is over, football is the winner.”–OnPointPress.net