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Baker Mayfield Details Wife’s Death Threat

Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield has had more success as a commercial spokesman this season than he has on the field.   lackluster play has irritated sports gamblers and football fanatics to the point that they have lashed out with death threats on social media.  Baker recently discussed the latest social media death threat to his wife, stating, “…it’s not like it’s anything new for us.”

Details of the Death Threat

The death threat in question was issued on social media earlier this season after a Browns loss.  Though the exact date of the death threat was not provided, it is known that it occurred earlier this week.  Baker and his wife seemed to have shrugged off the threat, insisting it isn’t the first to come their way.  

Mayfield tossed four interceptions in a heartbreaking loss to the Green Bay Packers on Christmas day.  The complaints and criticism on social media began shortly thereafter.  In fact, one of the quarterback’s teammates, safety John Johnson, broke league protocols by tweeting during the game.  Johnson tweeted in support of the team “running the damn ball” after Mayfield’s passes fell to the ground, bounced out of receivers’ hands, and were intercepted.  

The Focus is on Emily Mayfield

Emily, Baker’s wife, also acknowledged the death threats, stating, “The death threats, lies being told about my husband, and blatant DISRESPECT never ceases to amaze me.” Emily made the comments on her Instagram account.  She elaborated, “For the record — I pray for those of you who even think those thoughts.”

Reporters broached the subject of the death threats on Thursday after team practice.  Baker commented on the threats, stating it is difficult for him to say he can’t listen to it.  He went on to state,  “It’s hard when it comes down to somebody that you love, that you care about. She’s not able to change some of the outcomes of the game — or any at all.”

Indeed, Emily does not take to the field as a gridiron warrior, so it doesn’t make sense for sports gamblers and hardcore Browns fans to issue death threats against her.  Nor does it make sense for those threats to be issued to the team’s starting quarterback.  If the individuals issuing the threats are identified, they will be criminally prosecuted. 

Mayfield is approaching the end of his rookie contract with the Browns.  The former first overall draft pick has not reached a contract extension despite extensive talks with the organization.  Baker will likely enter free agency and sign with another team after he finishes out his contract.  Case Keenum, the backup for  Mayfield, is waiting in the wings.  Keenum led the Minnesota Vikings to the NFC Championship a couple seasons ago yet hasn’t received an opportunity to start under center since his near-stardom with the Vikings.

Can Baker Focus on Football?

With only a couple weeks left in the regular season, the Browns are still in playoff contention.  Baker insists he will tune out the noise, including the death threats, yet admits, “…it’s hard to advise other loved ones to do that.”  Baker is clearly referencing his wife, Emily. 

Take a look at the quarterback’s statistics on the season and you will begin to question whether the criticism and threats are taking a toll on his play.  The diminutive pocket passer has led the Browns to a disappointing 7-8 record.  He has thrown a lowly 2,825 yards, for  a mere 15 touchdowns while tossing 11 picks and being sacked 34 times.  All in all, Baker’s completion percentage is a pathetic 62.4%, making him one of the league’s least successful passers.

Baker’s off-field issues extend beyond family death threats.  The quarterback has been heavily criticized by the media and even current and former teammates.  The Browns’ former star wide receiver, Odell Beckham Jr., relocated earlier in the season after his father allegedly took to social media to criticize Baker for failing to throw him the ball at the frequency a Pro Bowl receiver deserves. 

Baker is Focusing on the Pittsburgh Steelers

Only time will tell if the “keyboard warriors”, as Baker describes them, will have a negative impact on his career and psyche.  However, it is worth noting thatthe quarterback concluded his interview yesterday with a message for those issuing death threats to himself and his wife on social media, stating, he prays for the individuals who even think of issuing death threats, “…let alone type them out.”  He concluded the comment by stating, “I hope you can find some happiness so you stop trying to steal it from others.”

The Browns are scheduled to do battle with the Pittsburgh Steelers this upcoming Monday on Monday Night Football.  Baker and his Browns are surprisingly favored by three points in the do-or-die game, no pun intended.

 

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Trash Talking Fans and Staring Down Kids: Is Ja Morant the Next NBA Bad Boy?

Ever since Ja Morant entered the NBA for the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2019 NBA draft, he’s had no problem making a name for himself. The road to cementing himself as one of the next NBA Superstars has consisted of numerous posterizing dunks and high scoring performances that have helped power the Memphis Grizzlies place third in the western conference. They’re right beneath the Phoenix Suns and Golden State Warriors, and all indications point to 2022 being a season to remember for fans as well as members of the front office. 

They have to thank their franchise player, Ja Morant, who has no problem making waves on and off the court. This has been especially true this year, and he’s had no problem even taking his own fans to task. Returning from a knee injury, he shared that he was hurt after overhearing Grizzlies fans in the crowd say that he should sit back down. This was one of the first indications that he’d handle fans the same way he does opposing players. Some followers of the NBA wonder what this means for Ja Morant’s stature as one of the league’s biggest and brightest rising stars. 

The demeanor he brings to the game is vastly different than that of most other young superstars currently in the NBA. Many NBA fans wonder if Ja Morant is the next in line to take the title of the league’s biggest villain. Given the fact that he literally stared  down children in the crowd during his most recent showdown against the Golden State Warriors, it’s more than a fair concern. 

Kids Aren’t Even Safe From Ja Morant’s Ire

He rumbled into the crowd and seemingly ignored kids who were hoping to high-five him, so it seems like he was being the next great NBA bad boy. He offered his rationale on Twitter  for not high-fiving the young fans, describing that he was “too locked in”. He later claimed that their 10 game winning streak, including a victory over the Golden State Warriors, led to the Grizzlies receiving respect they hadn’t previously received. 

The moment may have been a galvanizing one, but it seemed to have struck a nerve with star Warriors Point Guard, Stephen Curry. The exact quote from Morant was, “I bet you we’ve got it [respect] now”, to which Curry replied, “The big part is you talk about it right now; you’ve got to show it in the playoffs. We want to be there to try to do that. I know they want to, too. Nobody’s trying to win the verbal conversation right now of who we are in January”. It’s only natural to wonder if his peers are growing tired of Morant’s fiery nature.

Are People Growing Tired of the Antics?

As part of his rise to NBA Superstardom, Morant made a habit of “almost” dunking on NBA vets, which led to attention from numerous media outlets. Now, his highlight reel consists of slick passes, chase down blocks, and the occasional thunderous roar down the lane leading to a dunk. Since the brunt of his celebrity is from essentially embarrassing other players, it’s fair to question how his attitude has affected his stature in the league. There’s no telling how much longer other players, and even home team fans will be willing to tolerate a level of outspokenness that’s rarely been displayed before, even by a star athlete. Fortunately, his play on the court seems more than capable of backing up his tone off the court. Although it doesn’t always seem like it, he appreciates engagement with fans too. 

The Memphis Grizzlies star offered to personally send a jersey to the same young fans he stared down during the game against the Golden State Warriors. The impact Morant has had on the Memphis Grizzlies franchise is immense. His star is so bright, in fact, that the interaction with the young fans led to the team’s official Twitter account, the introduction of the New Year, New Jerseys program. The program allows fans with any opposing team jerseys, adult or youth sizes, to trade for brand new Ja Morant and Jaren Jackson Junior jerseys. Hopefully, the same kids that were left hanging on their high fives will come back in Grizzlies jerseys next time.

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Leaked Footage Shows a Hot Mic Conversation Between News Anchors Calling Djokovic a ‘Lying, Sneaky A**hole

There has been a lot of controversy surrounding Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic and his failure to isolate after testing positive for COVID. Opinions regarding the athlete, ahead of the Australian Open are strong. In fact, a pair of TV anchors on the Seven Network in Australia were caught blasting Djokovic when they thought their mics were turned off. 

Djokovic tested positive for COVID last month. He did not isolate, and in fact, went on to do a media interview and photo shoot with a French sports newspaper knowing he had the virus. He also issued a false travel declaration. 

He apologized for his public appearances saying they were an error in judgment, but he also claimed the travel statement had been submitted by a member of his support staff. He chalks that one up to human error. 

The journalist and photographer working for L’Equipe, the newspaper that Djokovic interviewed with, were not told the athlete was COVID positive before or after the meeting took place. 

Australian Border Force officials are investigating inconsistencies in documents with the tennis star’s test results as well as his activities after testing positive. They are still trying to determine how this will affect Djokovic’s current Australian visa. 

Reports came out on Tuesday regarding possible discrepancies in the digital data on Djokovic’s PCR tests which were filed in court by the athlete’s lawyers and published online. According to certain media outlets, both positive and negative results appear when the QR code is accessed. Others are only seeing a positive result which is consistent with the documents filed in court. 

News Incident

Djokovic’s less than honest approach to the matter is being met with disapproval among media outlets and the general public. This became even more apparent after TV news anchors on Seven Network in Australia were caught blasting the athlete, seemingly unaware that they were being recorded. 

The leaked video footage shows anchors Mike Amor and Rebecca Maddern questioning mistakes that appeared on Djokovic’s visa application and making personal attacks against him. “Whatever way you look at it, Dkokovic is a lying sneaky a**hole,” one of them was quoted as saying. 

The video also features snippets of their conversation where they discuss opinions regarding the government and border authorities making a mess of the process. 

The leaked mic footage has gone viral on Twitter and other social media outlets. 

The Current Situation

Djokovic was traveling to Australia to participate in the Australian Open. Although he was detained at the border, he is being allowed to stay in the country. 

The penalty for submitting a false travel declaration can be punished with a maximum penalty of 12 months. Although the judge allowed the athlete to walk free to begin training for the tournament, he could still face deportation. There is also an ongoing investigation concerning whether he will be removed from the country. 

Although the judge has overturned the decision to cancel the athlete’s visa, immigration minister Alex Hawke could use his personal power to revoke it, which would lead to another legal standoff. If Djokovic is permitted to stay in the country, it is likely that he will play in the Australian Open however, that is also unclear. 

Djokovic has made several statements concerning the situation,

“I want to address the continuing misinformation about my activities and attendance at events in December in the lead up to my positive PCR COVID test result. This is misinformation which needs to be corrected, particularly in the interest of alleviating broader concerns in the community about my presence in Australia and to address matters which are very hurtful concerning my family. I want to emphasize that I have tried hard to ensure the safety of everyone and my compliance with testing obligations.”

Regardless, photographs have shown the athlete out at public events unmasked around other people including children. Supposedly, that was during a time when he was ‘uncertain’ about his results. 

The next few days should reveal Djokovic’s fate concerning the matter at hand. Whether his reputation will ever recover is unknown.

 

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Rafael Nadal Isn’t All Full Of Sympathy For Novak Djokovic

The Nadal-Djokovic Rivalry is one the greatest rivalries in the world of sports, especially tennis. The two men have gone against each other in different tournaments and on different turfs, including hard courts, clay, and grass. 

To date, Novak Djokovic stands as the only tennis player to have successfully defeated Rafael Nadal in the four major tennis tournaments — French Open, U.S. Open, Australian Open, and Wimbledon. 

The current world number 1, Novak Djokovic slightly edges out Nadal in their head-to-head count. The duo has gone against each other at different stages of competitions 58 times, with Djokovic coming out victorious 30 times out of those meetings. 

Tennis lovers are looking forward to seeing the statistics grow at this year’s Australian Open which begins in a few days. 

However, that will only be possible if Djokovic can meet all the requirements and settle with the appropriate authorities to play in the competition without being vaccinated. 

It had been stated in 2021, that only vaccinated players will be able to participate in the competition. 

Djokovic was willing to bank on a medical exemption due to his previous COVID diagnoses and treatment about 6 months ago. However, it doesn’t seem to be going as planned. 

The Australian authority has indicated that his medical exemption isn’t sufficient enough to grant him the chance to chase his record 21 grand slam singles title in the Australian open, without being vaccinated. 

His attempt to enter Australia on Thursday the 6th of January 2021, met strict resistance. The Tennis star spent his first night being interrogated at the airport by border officials, who strictly reiterated their stance on the necessity of being vaccinated against the COVID virus before being allowed entry into the country. 

Djokovic spent his second night in quarantine at a hotel while he awaits the verdict of his visa appeal this coming Monday. His strong stance not to get vaccinated has put him at the center of a political and diplomatic stir between the Serbian and Australian Governments. 

The Australian authorities question the validity of his medical exemption from a COVID-19 vaccination. His hopes of participating now hang in the air as he awaits the verdict of his visa appeal.

Amidst all this, Rafael Nadal has decided not to read deeper meaning into the situation. 

Nadal returned to the competition for the first time since August last year, and believes that Djokovic was aware of his decisions and the consequences they may bring. 

He said he believes in the medical experts’ recommendations, and whatever their directive may be, he follows it to the letter. 

Nadal continued by saying: “I’ve experienced the COVID. I have been vaccinated twice. By doing this, there shouldn’t be a problem playing here. That’s very clear, amongst other things. I don’t want to have an opinion or give a recommendation/opinion when I don’t have the complete information. 

The Spanish Tennis superstar went on to say, “Getting vaccinated is the only clear thing to me. If you’re vaccinated, you can participate in the Australian Open and everywhere. In my opinion, the world has been suffering enough not to follow the rules.”

Rafael Nadal was further questioned on whether he felt sorry for his major rival in the tournament, and while his response was quite positive, he wasn’t full of sympathy for the Serbian international.

He said, “I think if he wanted, he would be playing in the Australian Open without a problem. He made his own decisions, and everyone’s free to make their own decisions, but it comes with consequences. Of course, I don’t like the current situation. In some way, I feel sorry for him, but at the same time, he was aware of the conditions many months ago. So, he makes his own decision.” 

Djokovic is currently at a Melbourne immigration hotel in quarantine. The park hotel currently holds 36 asylum seekers who have been detained for over 8 years. This has caused upset for Djokovic fans worldwide. 

His presence in the hotel has brought about an unusual spotlight, with fans gathering outside the hotel to show their solidarity and support. 

Activists are also leveraging the spotlight to publicly condemn and protest against the treatment received by asylum seekers in the hotel. 

It remains to be seen whether or not Djokovic will participate in the Australian Open, which begins onJanuary 17th, 2022.

 

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Buccaneers’ Star Wideout Antonio Brown Leaks Head Coach’s Texts

Antonio Brown stormed off the field this past Sunday in what looked like the end of his career in the National Football League.  However, the Buccaneers have not removed Brown from the team roster.  Brown revealed his reasoning for departing the field in the first half of Sunday’s game, stating the team’s head coach, Bruce Arians, demanded that he play on a badly-injured ankle.  Brown is in the news yet again for leaking text messages sent by Arians.

About the Text Messages

Brown used his popular social media accounts on Instagram and Twitter to share screen captures of text messages allegedly sent by Arians.  The images reveal a conversation between the two pertaining to his injured ankle.  Brown initially injured the ankle in Week 6 of the season, rendering him immobile for the next two months.  

Brown also shared a photo with his followers that proved he received ankle treatment from a team trainer.  Brown’s logic in sharing the picture is to prove that he was incapable of reaching full speed while battling the ankle injury.  Brown also indicated in a different message that his Bucs teammates knew “nothing” about his interactions with Arians in the prior week.

Brown’s transmission of the treatment picture to Arians was in response to a message from Arians sent on December 30, stating, “This is BA. Make sure you’re ready to go tomorrow. We ARE NOT resting for the playoffs.”  

“BA” as referenced above is short for Bruce Arians.  In short, Brown is attempting to make the point that the team’s head coach was well aware of the fact that he was battling an injured ankle for much of the season.  

Where Does Brown Go From Here?

Arians supposedly told Brown that he’s “done”, after the star wideout was too injured to finish Sunday’s game.  Brown went on to state, “Don’t get it twisted. My brothers have been good to me. From Tom to the practice squad, we were a top-level unit. They have been good to me and knew nothing about my talks with coach last week. The team mishandled this situation. They let me down and, more importantly, my teammates.” Brown made the comments in a Twitter post on Thursday.

What’s Arians’ Take on the Brown Situation?

Arians’ Monday press conference was somewhat illuminating as he indicated to reporters that Brown did not let him know about the injury on Sunday prior to the game.  However, Arians refused to share additional information he had obtained from Brown during a conversation with the mysterious wideout prior to his departure from the field.  

Arians went on to state that if a team player has an issue with an injury, he is encouraged to speak with the trainer.  The trainer is the one who determines whether the player is capable of playing the rest of the game or if he will be removed from the field of play for health and safety reasons.

It appears as though Brown followed this protocol yet it is not known whether the team trainer recommended that he sit out the second half of Sunday’s game.  Though the Bucs won the game, Brown was clearly disturbed.  Brown even went as far as tweeting “Health over Wealth,” and added the hashtag, “Barbarian” in a reference to his head coach, Arians.

The Role of Alex Guerrero in the Brown Drama

Alex Guerrero, Brown’s former personal trainer, traded text messages with the wide receiver on Christmas Eve that reveal the two no longer work with one another.  However, Guerrero’s return text seems to suggest what Brown should say in response to the incident.  

The wideout went on to post a screen grab of that conversation on Twitter and even tagged Tom Brady’s account to make him aware of the situation.  This is an interesting twist to the Brown saga as Alex Guerrero is Tom Brady’s longtime personal trainer.  Guerrero is also a business partner in Brady’s TB12 health products and training business.  

Brown stated to Brady that Guerrero is charging him six figures for personal training despite not doing any work.  The accusation was also made over social media.  Brown went on to question Brady, asking, “How u even work wit people like this! This is what I was dealing wit.”

Brown’s Attorney Enters the Foray

Sean Bursytn, the attorney for Brown, also made his voice heard throughout the drama.  Bursytn issued a statement indicating he saw the MRI results taken on Monday that revealed a segment of the wideout’s ankle had “…a piece of loose bone.”  

According to Bursytn, that loose bone pressed into the joint of the ankle, causing the ligament to “…snap clean off the bone.”  If Bursytn’s observations are true, Brown is surely in pain and will require surgery in the weeks ahead.  However, Tampa Bay has not officially removed the wideout from its roster, so there is a chance he will play another down with the team in spite of the seemingly never-ending drama.

 

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Rob Gronkowski Fans the Flames of his Controversial Hit on Bills’ Cornerback Tre White

Tampa Bay Buccaneers right end Rob Gronkowski is a Super Bowl winner and a surefire first ballot Hall of Fame inductee.  However, the mammoth tight end can also be described as petulant and self-centered.  Gronkowski’s true character came to light earlier this week when he made some controversial comments about how he was happy to have been suspended by the NFL during the ’17 season.

Gronkowski’s Comments Light a Fire 

Gronkowski was suspended for a full week halfway through the ’17 campaign after blasting Buffalo Bills defensive back Tre White with a completely unnecessary late hit.  However, the suspension didn’t dissuade Gronkowski from changing his ways.  In fact, it emboldened him.  The simpleton tight end revealed such when making comments about the hit and resulting suspension this past Tuesday on the latest episode of “Man in the Arena.”

Gronkowski stated, “I just got suspended a week. I was happy, I was finally happy.  I was like, ‘Yes, I’m away from football for a week. I get to recover my body.’”  The brutish tight end went on to describe how he and his Patriots teammates were having a difficult time during the season and that the grind was “taking a toll” on himself, as well as the rest of his squad.  

Gronkowski also elaborated on how he was singled out by the league for supposed personal fouls.  Even his teammate, Tom Brady, chimed in to echo the sentiment, stating, “Every time Gronk would touch someone, they would throw a flag on Gronk.  But at the same time, they could drape their arms all over him and not get called for any penalties.”

The Hit on White

On December 3, 2017, Tre White, the All Pro cornerback of the Buffalo Bills, intercepted a pass targeting Gronkowski.  Gronkowski took out his frustration on White during the play, blasting him with a blindside hit.  The tight end insists he targeted White with the illegal hit as the cornerback entered his routes throughout the game, yet the referees failed to call a single penalty. 

Gronkowski states he “lost it” prior to jabbing his elbow into an unsuspecting White.  White was knocked out on the play and ultimately ended up entering the league’s concussion protocol.  Though Gronkowski issued a public apology to White after the game and indicated his frustration got the better of him, he sang a different tune during his “Man in the Arena” interview that aired earlier this week.  Gronkowski admitted he was happy to be suspended as the illegal hit afforded him an entire week off from the grind of an NFL season.  

“I mean, when you’re running full-speed into people, definitely was taking a toll on me. Football, such a grind week in, week out. It is physical, it’s violent, and you’re just running full speed at people and you need to recover from football and that’s what a lot of people don’t understand,” the gargantuan tight end said.

Gronkowski Has No Remorse

The Bucs’ tight end went on to detail how his only loss stemming from the illegal hit was a game check in the amount of $300,000.  However, he states he “…didn’t even care one bit.”  It is clear Gronkowski is more interested in maintaining his physical and mental health than playing the game the right way and making millions of dollars.  

Gronkowski is still playing with Tom Brady in Tampa Bay.  The two are currently in the thick of the NFC playoff race, attempting to win their second straight Super Bowl title.  The team will have to make its push for the crown without mercurial wide receiver Antonio Brown.  Brown, also a hothead, stormed off the field this past Sunday, tossing his jersey and gloves into the crowd halfway through the game.  

The diminutive wideout was spotted waiting for a rideshare service in the stadium parking lot in the third quarter.  However, as of January 5th, Brown is still listed as an active member of the Bucs’ roster.  His presence on the roster is a bit surprising considering the team’s head coach, Bruce Arians, stated he is no longer a member of the squad.

Tre White’s Response to Gronkowski’s Comments

Buffalo Bills fans will find it interesting to know their Pro Bowl cornerback Tre White has not yet responded to the unsavory Gronkowski admission.  White suffered a severe concussion from the hit.  The all-world cornerback is out for the remainder of the year with a torn ACL.  

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are scheduled to play the 5-11 Carolina Panthers this upcoming Sunday afternoon.  The Buffalo Bills will do battle with the New York Jets on Sunday at 4:25 Eastern.  It is possible the Bucs and Bills will face one another in this year’s Super Bowl scheduled to be played in LA’s gorgeous new SoFi stadium on Sunday, February 13th.

 

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