Review Category : National Sports

Lamar Odom Opens Up About His Future With Khloe Kardashian

Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Making yet another public appearance Wednesday at Kobe Bryant’s record-breaking final game, Lamar Odom appears well on the road to recovery, but his future with his Khloe Kardashian is still up in the air.

“We did talk, you know, everything is [up for] discussion,” Odom told “Entertainment Tonight.” “We talk about anything. We’ve been through a lot. It won’t ever stop.”

Kardashian put the couple’s divorce proceedings on hold after the former NBA basketball player was found unconscious at a Las Vegas brothel last year. She remained by his side throughout his hospitalization at a Nevada hospital and later at a Los Angeles medical facility.

Now that Odom is doing better, the question of whether she will move forward with the divorce has moved to the forefront.

On Sunday, the “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” star wrote in a lengthy and emotional post on Instagram, “Sometimes the person you want most is the person you’re best without.”

She continued, “Letting go doesn’t mean that you don’t care about someone anymore. It’s just realizing that the only person you really have control over is yourself. We have to learn to stop taking on peoples problems as if they are our own. Loving people does not mean we have to carry their burdens and confusions on our back.”

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Staples Center Sets Record, Sells $1.2 Mill of Kobe Merchandise

iStock/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) — It was an historic night in more ways than one for the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday night.

In addition to Kobe Bryant dropping 60 points in the final game of his 20-year career, the arena home to the Lakers set a world record. The Staples Center sold $1.2 million worth of Kobe Bryant merchandise, according to ESPN.

Sean Ryan, AEG vice president of merchandise, said the venue had the most single-day sales for any arena in the world. The O2 Arena in London held the previous record after selling $1 million worth of Led Zeppelin merchandise on December 10, 2007. That was the group’s first full-length concert in 30 years.

The average fan spent $61 on merchandise in Staples Center, and the average bill was $230.

The 24 Collection, the high-end Kobe memorabilia, includes a range of merchandise detailed with diamonds and gold.

One ticket holder purchased 20 limited-edition jerseys which retailed at $824 each, which come in a commemorative box. Ryan said it’s likely the jerseys have a higher resale value now.

Additionally, 24 leather jackets that were styled with Swarovski crystals retailed for $5,824. Bryant was gifted the 24/24 jacket, and Vanessa, his wife, received the 8/24 jacket. Just three were left for sale at the end of the night.

Ticket stubs are also expected to have high resale numbers. Auctions for tickets on eBay have surpassed $100.

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Kobe Bryant’s NBA Career: First Game Wildly Different than Last

Harry How/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) — On Wednesday night, Kobe Bryant played his final game in the NBA. He went out with a swoosh — or a few dozen — scoring 60 points to lead the Los Angeles Lakers to a 101-96 victory over the Utah Jazz.

Bryant’s last game was as different as can be from his scoreless NBA debut nearly 20 years ago. The 37-year-old star’s career has been a long and memorable one for the NBA.

In 1996, Bryant was drafted 13th overall by the Charlotte Hornets, then traded to the Los Angeles Lakers.

Bryant was 18 years old and fresh out of high school in his first game against the Minnesota Timberwolves on Nov. 3, 1996. Bryant played for only six minutes and didn’t score any points, but the Lakers won. He did score a point two days later against the New York Knicks, when he played for a grand total of three minutes.

Within a few years, he was part of the best franchise in the game. Along with fellow Lakers star Shaquille O’Neal, then led by coach Phil Jackson, Bryant would help the franchise win three consecutive championships between 2000 to 2002.

Shaquille O’Neal and other NBA stars were among those who attended Bryant’s last game at Staples Center, the current home of the Lakers after they left the Forum in 1999.

“I knew coming into the night, I just didn’t want to play bad,” Bryant said during a news conference after his final game. “I just wanted to focus on the game. I had a little bit of nerves, but they were able to settle down.”

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Titans Give Rams No. 1 Pick in Trade Ahead of NFL Draft

Allen Kee / ESPN Images(NASHVILLE, Tenn.) — Ahead of this year’s NFL draft, the Tennessee Titans have traded their No. 1 pick — along with their fourth-round and sixth-round picks — to the Los Angeles Rams, the team announced on Thursday.

In exchange, the Titans will receive the No. 15 pick, two second-round picks (43 and 45) and one third-round pick (76), giving Tennessee a total of six selections in the top 76. The team retained pick No. 33 and 64.

“Being able to acquire six players in the top 76 this year, along with next year when you factor that into it — I am assuming five in the top three rounds — that is 11 players that we can add to this football team that should not only increase our depth, but give us good quality players at all those positions,” Titans general manager Jon Robinson said in a statement.

As part of the deal, Tennessee will also get the Rams’ first-round and third-round picks in 2017.

“In the end we thought it was a decision that was best for this football team,” Robinson said. “It made sense for us to do it, and that’s why we moved on it.”

He added, “We talked to several teams about the pick. There was interest in the pick, and in the end we thought this was the option that made the most sense for us…We think we can really bolster this roster with the picks that we now have.”

The 2016 NFL draft will take place in Chicago on April 28-30.

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Mamba Out: Kobe Bryant Finishes Final Game with a Storybook Ending

Photo by Harry How/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) — In his 1,346th NBA game with the Los Angeles Lakers Wednesday night, marking his final game with the league, Kobe Bryant scored 60 points to pull off a fourth-quarter upset against the Utah Jazz, 101-96.

Bryant celebrated the win with a post-game hug from former Lakers player Lamar Odom, as well as other players and family on the court.

Addressing the crowd after the game, he said he is most proud of “the down years,” a reference to when the team wasn’t doing too well. He added, “We didn’t run, we played through and did it the right way…You can’t write something better than this…Thank you guys for all the years of support, all the motivation, all the inspiration.”

Then, in a reference to his nickname, Bryant ended his speech with, “Mamba out.”

Shortly afterwards, Bryant held a news conference, at which he expressed in greater detail his frame of mind.

“I knew coming into the night, I just didn’t want to play bad,” he said. “I just wanted to focus on the game. I had a little bit of nerves…but they were able to settle down.”

When asked how he would have liked his career to end, Bryant said, “The perfect ending would have been a championship.”

And when asked what was going through his mind when he was approaching the court, he said, “’Don’t trip.’ It’s so surreal. It’s hard to describe…Everything is moving extremely slow, but extremely fast.”

As for his mindset, he said he was “trying to go out playing hard…it felt good to be able to do that one last time.” Still, Bryant, admits he was emotional.

“There were a lot of points [during the game] when I started getting emotional. I was putting on the jersey and I was like ‘this is the last time I’m putting on the jersey.’”

As for what lies ahead, Bryant said, laughing, “I have to find a new routine.”

The game kicked off with a video montage of a slew of Bryant’s sports colleagues wishing him well and praising his career with the Los Angeles Lakers.

The live broadcast from Staples Center in Los Angeles began with a message from former L.A. Lakers player Earvin “Magic” Johnson Jr., praising his work ethic and impact on the NBA and Los Angeles.

“We are here to celebrate [Bryant’s] greatness for 20 years and excellence for 20 years,” Johnson told the roaring crowd. “Kobe Bryant has never cheated the game, he has never cheated us as the fans, he has played through injuries, he’s played hurt, and we have five championship banners to show for it. When you think about this town for the last 20 years, this man has been the biggest and greatest celebrity we’ve had in this town for 20 years.”

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Eighteen. Time. All-Star. #ThankYouKobe #NBAGIF pic.twitter.com/90NlgG46c1

— NBA (@NBA) April 14, 2016

After Johnson spoke, a video montage was broadcast, featuring Lakers alums Shaquille O’Neal and Derek Fisher, Miami Heat’s Dwyane Wade, Minnesota Timberwolves’ Kevin Garrett, New York Knicks’ Carmelo Anthony, Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry, Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James, Chicago Bulls’ Pau Gasol, San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich, and former Lakers coach Phil Jackson. Actor Jack Nicholson also appeared in the video.

Nicholson, who also was present at the game, said, “You’ve been an inspiration to us all. L.A. loves you.” Other celebs at the game included Jay Z, Kanye West, David Beckham, Adam Levine and Paula Abdul.

And fellow basketball players praised Bryant for his sportsmanship. Anthony said, “I appreciate everything you did for the game,” while James said “you set the standards for the league.”

After the video played, spectators began chanting “Kobe, Kobe, Kobe,” followed by Flea from The Red Hot Chili Peppers singing the national anthem.

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Dale Earnhardt Jr. Honoring Buddy Baker with Darlington Throwback Paint Scheme

Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images(DAYTONA BEACH, Fla.) — Dale Earnhardt Jr. will honor the late driver Buddy Baker by using Baker’s “Gray Ghost” paint scheme during the Southern 500 Throwback Weekend at Darlington Raceway in early September.

“It’s my favorite paint scheme of all time,” Earnhardt Jr. said at Wednesday’s announcement, according to NASCAR.com.

His No. 88 car will also feature the 1980s logo of his sponsor, Nationwide.

The throwback paint schemes for Stewart-Haas Racing drivers Kurt Busch and Danica Patrick were also revealed on Wednesday.

Darlington Raceway will host the Sprint Cup Series’ Bojangles’ Southern 500 on September 4, during Labor Day weekend.

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Scoreboard Roundup — 4/13/16

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

INTERLEAGUE

Detroit 7, Pittsburgh 3

AMERICAN LEAGUE

L.A. Angels 5, Oakland 1
Seattle 4, Texas 2, 10 Innings
Toronto 7, N-Y Yankees 2
Boston 4, Baltimore 2
Cleveland 4, Tampa Bay 1
Chi White Sox 3, Minnesota 0
Kansas City 4, Houston 2

NATIONAL LEAGUE

N-Y Mets 2, Miami 1
Washington 3, Atlanta 0
Philadelphia 2, San Diego 1
Chi Cubs 9, Cincinnati 2
Milwaukee 6, St. Louis 4
Colorado 10, San Francisco 6
L.A. Dodgers 3, Arizona 1

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Washington 109, Atlanta 98
OT Detroit 112, Cleveland 110
Indiana 97, Milwaukee 92
Boston 98, Miami 88
Minnesota 144, New Orleans 109
Charlotte 117, Orlando 103
Chicago 115, Philadelphia 105
Houston 116, Sacramento 81
San Antonio 96, Dallas 91
Toronto 103, Brooklyn 96
Portland 107, Denver 99
Phoenix 114, L-A Clippers 105
Golden State 125, Memphis 104 (Golden State sets record for most wins in a season, with 73)
L-A Lakers 101, Utah 96 (Kobe Bryant scores 60 points in final game)

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Tampa Bay 3, Detroit 2
Pittsburgh 5, N-Y Rangers 2
OT St. Louis 1, Chicago 0

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Kobe Bryant Scores 60 in Final Game of His Career

Photo by Harry How/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) — It may have been the last game of his career, but Kobe Bryant had some tricks left up his sleeve.

Bryant scored 60 points, the most for any player in their final career game in the league’s history, while also setting a record for most shots attempted in a single game with 50. Bryant’s fourth quarter scoring spree allowed the Lakers to come from behind and defeat the Utah Jazz 101-96. Bryant scored or assisted on the Lakers’ final 19 points of the game, including a pair of free throws with under ten seconds left to seal the win and reach the 60 point mark.

The five-time NBA Champion is the only player in history to play 20 seasons all with one team.

The game was the 25th of Bryant’s career with more than 50 points — more than any player besides Wilt Chamberlain and Michael Jordan.

After the game, Bryant told fans at the Staples Center that he couldn’t “believe how fast 20 years went by.”

“Thank you guys for all the support…for all the motivation…for all the inspiration,” Bryant told the fans.

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Golden State Warriors Use Three-Point Barrage to Set NBA Single-Season Wins Record

Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images(OAKLAND, Calif.) — The Golden State Warriors set the NBA record for wins in a season in emphatic fashion on Wednesday night, draining 20 three-pointers in a 125-104 win over the Memphis Grizzlies.

Most Valuable Player Candidate Stephen Curry led the Warriors with 46 points, including his fourth game of the year with 10 or more three-pointers made — despite not playing in the fourth quarter. He also surpassed the 400 three-pointers made mark, finishing the year with 402. The previous single-season record for threes was 286.

With the win, the Warriors finished the season 73-9, breaking the previous best of 72-10 set by the 1995-1996 Chicago Bulls.

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Atlanta Braves’ Hector Olivera Arrested, Accused of Assault

Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images(ARLINGTON, Va.) — Atlanta Braves outfielder Hector Olivera was placed on the restricted list Wednesday after allegations of a physical altercation with a woman at a Virginia hotel.

The Braves are in town to play a four-game series with the Washington Nationals. According to ABC’s Washington, D.C. affiliate WJLA-TV, the woman called authorities from the Ritz Carlton in Pentagon City at 6:51 a.m. Wednesday, saying she had been assaulted. Police who arrived at the scene said she had suffered bruises and was taken to an Arlington-area hospital.

Olivera was taken into custody at the hotel, but was not immediately charged.

WJLA reports that Olivera and the victim knew each other, though details of their relationship were yet unknown.

The Braves released a statement Wednesday afternoon saying that they had placed Olivera on administrative leave. “We are extremely disappointed and troubled to learn of the allegations involving Hector Olivera,” the team said. “We will continue to gather information and will address this matter appropriately as we determine the facts.”

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