Random prediction: Papa John’s Pizza is Trump’s favorite pizza

originally posted on deadspin.com…..

How was your Wednesday? It was likely better than that of Papa John’s Pizza founder John Schnatter, who resigned from just about every position he still held after it emerged that he used the n-word during a [checks notes] sensitivity training session.

According to a Forbes report, last month Papa John took part in a conference call with a marketing agency brought in to prevent Papa from shooting himself in the foot again, as he did in November when he claimed that NFL player protests were hurting his pizza sales and [checks notes again] “white supremacists praised Schnatter’s comments.” Papa soon stepped down as CEO and the NFL ended its sponsorship deal, but the damage was done.

In June’s conference call, Papa was asked “how he would distance himself from racist groups online.” (Normal question to ask a pizza man.) Papa replied by complaining that “Colonel Sanders called blacks n——-s”—no one is quite sure where he got this from—and KFC never got in trouble. He also noted, for some reason, that where he grew up people used to kill black people by dragging them behind trucks. (Normal answer from the pizza man.)

The pizza dominoes quickly started to fall:

  • Papa John stepped down from the University of Louisville’s board of trustees. He had previously resigned from the Louisville Athletics Association Board.
  • MLB indefinitely suspended its “Papa Slam” promotion with the company, where fans could get pizza discounts after grand slams.
  • Papa John’s Pizza shares tanked by nearly five percent on Wednesday, wiping out $96.2 million in market value and reaching a two-year low.
  • Papa John resigned as chairman of the board of Papa John’s.

On Wednesday afternoon, Papa John emailed a statement to Forbes,confirming their account of the conference call and apologizing:

“News reports attributing the use of inappropriate and hurtful language to me during a media training session regarding race are true,” he said. “Regardless of the context, I apologize. Simply stated, racism has no place in our society.”

Papa John’s links to his beloved Louisville are not completely severed, not yet. The football stadium is still named Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium, and through what ESPN calls a “complicated” arrangement, the naming-rights deal is with Papa himself and not his company. And according to the contract, if Papa John leaves Papa John’s, he can rename the building.


Lebron’s Lakers unfolded laundry-roster explained

Sorry Lebron, my dad sucks

As if Lebron signing with the west-coast Yankees wasn’t an explosion of hoops dialect enough for us all to digest, the Lakers dropped more bombs over Lebron-Land this week by signing two grumpy-cat, ball-dominant non-shooting guards in Lance Stephenson and Rajon Rondo.

Most of you will remember Lance Stephenson for moments like this:

You smell like peppermint

Indiana Pacers President of Basketball Operations, Kevin Pritchard, described Stephenson in an interesting way recent:

“Sometimes he was the best player on our team, and sometimes he was the best player on the other team,” Pritchard told reporters. “We love Lance and we wish him the best.”

The question must be posed, in this stage of Lebron’s career, why would he OK the signing of an aging vet who is capable of such bad breath, both figuratively and literally? And even more-so, why sign Rajon Rondo, an equally opinionated/shit-starter, who can’t shoot the ball outside of 10 feet, and has never met a coach he didn’t hate? I mean, the Lakers already have one inept-shooting point guard on the squad – Lonzo Ball. I envision Lebron yelling at a lot of dudes for missing open jumpers in 2018-19.

On paper, this seems contradictory to what’s worked for Lebron’s championship level teams – the blueprint has always been to surround Lebron with specialized, skilled shooters and a big man who can rebound, defend and clean up the mess on the offensive boards.

This rubric gave Lebron the space to operate and kick out to open shooters as defenses collapsed, but with this current Lakers roster – Lebron is the best option to create, finish at the rim AND shoot open three-pointers. So how can Lebron drive and kick to himself? I mean, he’s good…..but that’s next-level, NBA Jam-type cheat codes.

Thankfully, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst is here to tell us a little bit about what the hell is actually going on. According to Windhorst’s sources, all the moves the Lakers have made since signing LeBron were discussed by LeBron and team president Magic Johnson ahead of time. The best answer tot he “WTF” question, according to Windhorst, is that LeBron is tired, tired, tired.

From ESPN:

The Cavs were a team of specialists — many of them shooters — who were placed around the league’s ultimate Swiss Army knife. But at times, especially during the playoffs, it did have the feel that James was playing 1-on-5 and needing to play 48 minutes because he was the team’s only true creator and playmaker.


What Johnson pitched to James was a team stocked with tough-minded playmakers like Stephenson and Rondo who could free up James to finish in the lanes and from the post, rather than having to create the lion’s share of the offense himself. Rondo and Stephenson are also defensively versatile as their length enables them to be effective defenders in switches. That also follows with the talents of the 6-foot-6 Ball, who showed the ability to be an elite rebounder and defender for a guard in his rookie year.

At first glance, this makes some sense. If Lebron is considering the idea of taking the Jordan-later years role of scoring the ball more from the post, then I can see how letting Rajon Rondo, Lonzo Ball, Lance Stephenson, Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma drive and create or cut off the ball when Lebron posts up can work. But how many of Lebron’s post-up, kick-out-for bricked open jumpers from Rondo and Ball will it take before LBJ goes full Luke Skywalker and starts dancing on some storm troopers? And how many possessions where Rondo, Ball or Stephenson literally dribble the burnt-orange off the ball for an entire shot-clock before Lebron turns full alpha-male and demands the ball?

Rajon Rondo is an incredible basketball mind, don’t get that twisted – around the NBA he is considered to have one of the highest basketball IQ’s in the game. But that knowledge and genius comes with a price of arrogance, bull-headed stubbornness and an argumentative nature. How will that sit with Lebron come crunch time? This seems like a move to keep Lebron from putting unnecessary miles on his tires throughout the regular season, but can you beat the Rockets in the playoffs with this roster? Can you beat Golden State in the playoffs?


How do you beat the Warriors when you can’t keep up with the three-ball? Defense may win championships, but in this current NBA – great shooting ALWAYS beats great defense.



The GOAT list

Admittedly, I stole this idea from deadpsin.com – who may have stole it from someone else…irrrregardless.

An exercise of free association-sports babble, below are the GOATS listed straight from the top of the dome with very little thought or regrets, feel free to comment, reply, email, discuss, rip-apart, judge, ridicule and enjoy:

Football: Brady
Baseball: Mays
Hukky: Gretzky
Boxing: Ali
Tennis: Serena
Basketball (Men): Jordan (Lebron’s 3 for 9 in the Finals)
Basketball (Women): uhhhhhhhhh, Lisa Leslie?
Soccer: Pele’ (amI right!?!?)
Acting: Streep and DeNiro
Rock: Rolling Stones
Pop: Michael Jackson (unless you consider The Beatles “pop”)
Country: Willie Nelson orrrrrr who really cares, it all basically sounds the same.
Hip Hop: Jay-Z
Comedy: Eddie Murphy
Book: Playboy
Painting: Banksy
Composer: Beethoven or Mozart, that’s all I know – they invented the piano as far as I am concerned.
Chef: Whoever invented the hamburger
Doctor: Julius Irving
Lawyer: Johnny Cochran (is there ANY other answer!!?)
President: James Polk (he accomplished everything he set out to do)
Holiday: Christmas
Fast Food: In & Out
Candy: Skittles
Beer: Fat Tire (I’m a simple bitch)
War: World War II (best movies came from killing Nazis)
Movie: Goodfellas
Planet: Uranus
Oprah: Ellen DeGeneres
Board game: Candyland
Cereal: Cinnamon Toast Crunch
Ice Cream Flavor: Cookies & Cream
Pizza: Pepperoni w/ extra cheese
Dinosaur: Velociraptor
Burger: Umami Burger (all of them)
Car: 1967 Ford Mustang fastback – Eleanor
Podcast: “In The Paint” coming to a podcastery near you soon

NBA draft predictions VS reality

As previously predicted, the NBA draft went pleasantly sideways last night as several trades threw multiple sized monkey wrenches into the spokes of my ever-spinning basketball tires.

Post-draft assessments are a bit boring usually, mostly due to the fact that no one really has a clue what kind of “motor” or “ignition switch” or “alternator” any of these teens can oil up for the duration of a 82-game NBA season, much less a career. For every example of a team nailing a pick (Donovan Mitchell), there’s 100 examples of picks that went off the rails or at the very least a tad bit eschew (Anthony Bennett, Kwame Brown, Greg Oden, Robert Swift, Robert “Tractor” Traylor, Michael Olowokandi, 75% of all European-picked players).

Having said that, here’s a quick post-draft assessment:

  •  The Phoenix Suns got their guy, Ayton checks all the boxes for their limping franchise and he’s even a local kid. The land of the sun also scooped up a ready-to-play-now asset in Mikal Bridges after he was hijacked from his mother in Philly.  
  • Atlanta made a big move and added two sharp-shooting guards that they desperately needed: Trae Young and Kevin Huerter. In addition, they landed a stretch-four that may or may not contribute right away in Omari Spellman.  Hey, now I can name three players on the Hawks roster! Seriously, who are these guys?
  • San Antonio landed what I consider to be a diamond in the rough, the possible Donovan Mitchell break-out player in this draft. Lonnie Walker, an insanely versatile, explosive athlete with the greatest hair in the history of the draft. 
  •  The LA Clippers pinned down two very athletic, scoring guards who can get up and down the floor. Jerome Robinson is one of the better natural scorers in the draft and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had a great suit on draft night, so I’m all in on him in the city of angels. 

See below for my prediction-accuracy, the red comments are my initial predictions and  will ultimately tell you the true story of the NBA draft.

I regret nothing.

  1. Phoenix Suns: Deandre Ayton, Arizona  – GOT IT!
  2. Sacramento Kings: Marvin Bagley III, Duke – GOT IT!
  3. Atlanta Hawks: Luka Doncic, Real Madrid (Traded to Mavericks) – SORTA!
  4. Memphis Grizzlies: Jaren Jackson Jr., Michigan State – GOT IT!
  5. Dallas Mavericks: Trae Young, Oklahoma (Traded to Hawks) – I was close on this one.
  6. Orlando Magic: Mohamed Bamba, Texas – (Wendell Carter) To air is human.
  7. Chicago Bulls: Wendell Carter Jr., Duke – (Michael Porter Jr.) The wheels are falling off.
  8. Cleveland Cavaliers: Collin Sexton, Alabama – (Trae Young) The sky is falling.
  9. New York Knicks: Kevin Knox, Kentucky – (Shai Gilgeous-Alexander) Dooooooh!
  10. Philadelphia 76ers: Mikal Bridges, Villanova (Traded to Suns) – (Kevin Knox) I’m terrible at this.
  11. Charlotte Hornets: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Kentucky (Traded to Clippers) – (Mikal Bridges) Push me off a cliff.
  12. Los Angeles Clippers: Miles Bridges, Michigan State (Traded to Hornets) – (Collion Sexton) WTF!??!
  13. Los Angeles Clippers: Jerome Robinson, Boston College – (Robert Williams) Good thing I’m not a betting man. 
  14. Denver Nuggets: Michael Porter Jr., Missouri – (Miles Bridges) Similar to how I feel about this Nuggets pick, I’m concerned for the future of my mental health. 
  15. Washington Wizards: Troy Brown, Oregon – (Lonnie Walker) Not even close.
  16. Phoenix Suns: Zhaire Smith, Texas Tech (Traded to 76ers) – (Aaron Holiday) Similar to my drinking habits, it just keeps getting worse.
  17. Milwaukee Bucks: Donte DiVincenzo, Villanova – (Jerome Robinson) I like this italian red-haired kid.
  18. San Antonio Spurs: Lonnie Walker IV, Miami – (Kevin Huerter) Hey, I was only one pick off on this one.
  19. Atlanta Hawks: Kevin Huerter, Maryland – (Zhaire Smith) He a terp.
  20. Minnesota Timberwolves: Josh Okogie, Georgia Tech – (Donte DiVincenzo) This was supposed to be the italian Stallion. Good thing I only “predicted” the top 20.
  21. Utah Jazz: Grayson Allen, Duke
  22. Chicago Bulls: Chandler Hutchison, Boise State
  23. Indiana Pacers: Aaron Holiday, UCLA
  24. Portland Trail Blazers: Anfernee Simons, IMG Academy
  25. Los Angeles Lakers: Moritz Wagner, Michigan
  26. Philadelphia 76ers: Landry Shamet, Wichita State
  27. Boston Celtics: Robert Williams III, Texas A&M
  28. Golden State Warriors: Jacob Evans, Cincinnati
  29. Brooklyn Nets: Džanan Musa, Cedevita
  30. Atlanta Hawks: Omari Spellman, Villanova

Woj went full thesaurus mode at the NBA draft

you sly devil, you.

originally posted here on deadpsin.com…….

Despite a report from Awful Announcing stating that reporters associated with NBA broadcast partners were asked by the league not to tip picks, the draft-night focus of ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski could not be shaken. But while Yahoo Sports’ Shams Charania appeared to outright ignore the league’s order, his former mentor Woj added just a bit of winking uncertainty to his spoilers this year, maintaining some plausible deniability.

Woj has been playing this game all night, though some attempts at subtlety were better than others:

  1. “has a laser on”
  2. “are fixated on”
  3. “is tantalized by”
  4. “have no plans to pass on”
  5. “are unlikely to resist”
  6. “has cleared the way”
  7. “are enamored with”
  8. “is zeroing in on”
  9. “is determined to select”
  10. “is locked on”
  11. “is locked in on”
  12. “prefers”
  13. “are targeting”
  14. “is focused on”
  15. “has been focused on”
  16. Getting scooped by your own protégé
  17. “are on”

a quaf-envious Adam Silver shakes the hand of Lonnie Walker on draft night

2018 NBA mock draft – and also Ghostbusters II

  1. Here’s your official/non-official 2018 NBA Mock Draft. If I happen to be correct with any of these guesses, then I’ll be quick to say I told ya so. For the incorrect calls – well, basketball isn’t an exact science, it’s more of a flowing river of pink slime with no beginning and no real end.




Height: 7’0″ | Weight: 260 pounds | Age: 19 | Last Mock: 1
Stats: 20.1 PPG, 11.6 RPG, 61.2% FG



Height: 6’10” | Weight: 235 | Age: 19 | Last: 2
Stats: 21.0 PPG, 11.1 RPG, 61.4% FG



Height: 6’8″ | Weight: 220 | Age: 19 | Last: 4
Stats (all competitions): 14.2 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 4.6 APG



Height: 6’11” | Weight: 235 | Age: 18 | Last: 3
Stats: 10.9 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 3.0 BPG



Height: 7’0″ | Weight: 225 | Age: 19 | Last: 6
Stats: 12.9 PPG, 10.5 RPG, 3.7 BPG



Height: 6’10” | Weight: 250 | Age: 19 | Last: 7
Stats: 13.5 PPG, 9.1 RPG, 2.1 BPG



Height: 6’10” | Weight: 210 | Age: 19 | Last: 5
Stats: 10.0 PPG, 6.7 RPG, 33% FG




Height: 6’1″ | Weight: 180 | Age: 19 | Last: 8
Stats: 27.4 PPG, 8.8 APG, 36.1% 3FG



Height: 6’6″ | Weight: 180 | Age: 19 | Last: 11
Stats: 14.4 PPG, 5.1 APG, 1.6 SPG




Height: 6’9″ | Weight: 215 | Age: 18 | Last: 14
Stats: 15.6 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 34.1% 3FG




Height: 6’7″ | Weight: 210 | Age: 21 | Last: 10
Stats: 18.0 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 43% 3FG




Height: 6’1″ | Weight: 185 | Age: 19 | Last: 9
Stats: 19.2 PPG, 3.6 APG, 33.6% 3FG



Height: 6’9″ | Weight: 240 | Age: 20 | Last: 13
Stats: 10.4 PPG, 9.2 RPG, 2.6 BPG



Height: 6’6″ | Weight: 220 | Age: 20 | Last: 15
Stats: 17.1 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 36.4% 3FG




Height: 6’4″ | Weight: 195 | Age: 19 | Last: 12
Stats: 11.5 PPG, 2.0 APG, 34.6% 3FG



Height: 6’0″ | Weight: 185 | Age: 21 | Last: 23
Stats: 20.3 PPG, 5.8 APG, 43% 3FG




Height: 6’4″ | Weight: 190 | Age: 21 | Last: 17
Stats: 20.4 PPG, 3.4 APG, 41.9% 3FG




Height: 6’7″ | Weight: 195 | Age: 19 | Last: 18
Stats: 14.8 PPG, 3.4 APG, 41.7% 3FG




Height: 6’4″ | Weight: 195 | Age: 19 | Last: 16
Stats: 11.3 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 55.6% FG



Height: 6’4″ | Weight: 200 | Age: 21 | Last: 19
Stats: 13.4 PPG, 4.8 RPG, 3.5 APG


Lebron’s landing spots, fact and fiction

Lebron made comments this week about being able to play in the league until his son, Bronny (14), gets drafted in the NBA. In previously unaired footage that was released by James’ multimedia platform UNINTERRUPTED on Monday, the 33-year-old says he’s already thought about the prospect of playing with — or even against — LeBron Jr.

“You want to ask me, ‘What was the greatest achievement in my life?'” James said. “If I’m on the same court as my son in the NBA. That would be No. 1 in my lifetime as an NBA player.”

“I’ve thought about it because my son is about to be 14, and he might be able to get in there a little early.”

As Lebron contemplates his family’s future, I’m sure the next thought entering his mind is much more present-day related. Where will Lebron be in 2018-19??

I’ve compiled a list of places and reasons that make sense, or maybe don’t make sense, hell I don’t know anymore. Dennis Rodman is crying on TV, wearing a MAGA hat! What is going on!?!?

Top Five Landing Spots:

1. Cleveland makes the most sense, they can rebuild the roster and ditch JR Smith to the curb, of course he won’t know what that means, so someone will have to explain it to him. Cleveland has the number 8 pick in the draft which should give them someone that can contribute immediately, Duke PF – Wendell Carter, Oklahoma PG – Tre Young or maybe Alabama PG –  Collin Sexton. Also, would Lebron really leave his first wife at the altar AGAIN?

2. Philly has LOTS of upside with their young talent, Ben Simmons should fit with Lebron’s pace of play and would probably benefit a lot from all the attention Lebron garners. Simmons cuts and moves off the ball fairly well and would have open driving lanes after Lerbon draws 3 defenders to him.

BUT, Joel Embiid’s offensive game doesn’t match up with Lebron, or at least historically his back to the basket – big man post moves has never really fit in with Lebron. Sure, Embiid can step out occasionally and hit a jumper, but he’s primarily more of a (talented) post-up player who needs the ball passed to him in the post to be effective. Lebron has NEVER had that kind of player with him.In Miami, Chris Bosh became a pick-and-pop guy who cleared the lane for Dwayne Wade and Lebron to operate. Same thing happened to Kevin Love in Cleveland, and Tristan Thompson fell off the face of the earth.

3. Any team in the Western Conference makes less sense than the previous two teams. But a combo of Kawhi Leonard and Gregg Popovich could be VERY enticing for Lebron’s third act. Kawhi’s future is a bit rocky, to say the least. But something tells me that the enigmatic swing-man is destined to work things out with the Spurs. Plus, they’ve still got Tony Parker, Manu  Ginobili, LaMarcus Aldridge, Pau Gasol, Rudy Gay and some young talent in Dejounte Murray and of course the Aussie blur – Patty Mills.

4. Houston already has two superstars, James Harden and Chris Paul. This dynamic duo ALMOST took down the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals, even with CP3 being injured for half the series. Adding Lebron would put them over the top, even when CP3 has his usual post-season-ending injury (seriously, it’s every year), Lebron and Harden would be absolutely un-guardable. We could see both of them average 35+ points per game easily, and Clint Capella would look like Deandre Jordan 2.0.

5. This is a long-shot, but there seems to be some truth to it. Los Angeles is always a desirable place for NBA superstars, the market and the city attract the best of the best in every profession so why wouldn’t Lebron want to be a permanent west-coaster? He already has a film/TV production company operating in LA, and he owns a home in Brentwood. But with a roster full of millenial-drama, not to mention a 35-47 record and an 11th place finish in the Western Conference, what’s the actual hoops attraction? The hope that Paul George and some random other superstar decides to move west? Hmmmmmmmm.

So you’re telling me there’s a chance (maybe?):

6. Miami again? Why not, they made a Bad Boys II and there’s a third installment of the Miami-based dynamic duo just waiting to be released….maybe Lebron follows Will Smith’s lead and returns to Miami?

7. I mean, why not right? You get to play in Madison Square Garden 40 times a season, become friends with Spike Lee and finally make a sequel to “Do The Right Thing” starring Lebron James as the superstar athlete who returns home to find his old neighborhood has regressed into a racist, segregated fracture of what it formerly was…which of course motivates him to get into politics and fix the mess that has become our country…errr, his former neighborhood? #Symbolism

8. Create the east-coast super team, PLEASE Lebron, PLEASE do this! Boston vs, Golden State – The NBA Finals for the foreseeable future, and you reunite with Kyrie which would make for the weirdest reunion since Gilligan Island’s CBS TV/Movie reunion where the cast was magically rescued and returned to society, but quickly found out they hated what the (Trump) world had become, got back together to take a  cruise AGAIN on the Skipper’s new boat, only to be shipwrecked AGAIN on the same GOT-DAM island as before. You can’t even write this stuff, but somehow they did.

9. There’s no way the league would let this happen right? I mean, there’s no way….right?