Jadakiss Drops Consignment Mixtape

Jadakiss released his Consignment mixtape this week, hosted by DJ Drama. HipHopDX caught up with Kiss and he explained how the collaboration came about. “I did The Champ Is Here Part 3 as a partnership- Gangsta Grillz/Invasion – which had [DJ] Green Lantern and DJ Drama, but this is actually my first Gangsta Grillz with just me and Drama,” The Lox rapper explained. “It was kinda like a mutual thing, but I reached out to him because I had a lot of “Down South” features and it just seemed like it coincided to have the hottest mixtape deejay from the South. ” 

At the time when I reached out to him, I was like, “Yo, I just need you to do this Gangsta Grillz. What’s going on?,” he’s like, “No doubt, I just need you to do this 16 for this song for me…,” so I did that and it was just like, you know, a swap out. That’s basically how everything gets accomplished in the industry, ‘cause everybody got a couple dollars, but it goes off your relationship.

Tags , ,

Hunter-Fisher feud stunts NBA’s growth

OK, let me get this straight. Billy Hunter is Jimmy Hoffa and Derek Fisher is Bobby Kennedy, and we’re in the middle of the NBA’s reenactment of “Blood Feud,” the 1983 TV miniseries that explored the apoplectic battle between the corrupt Teamsters president and an anti-corruption attorney general.

Got it.

As a bizarre, disappointing, strike-shortened NBA regular season draws to a close, there are agents, journalists and Fisher supporters who want us to believe Hunter’s nepotistic silver-spooning of family members and a failed 2009 business proposal that never cost the players union a dime are the key reasons the NBPA got run over in the lockout.

We’re also supposed to believe Hunter and Fisher are at war because Fisher wants to clean up all the corruption.

OK. Got it. I like fairy tales. I just don’t tell them.

Hunter, the executive director of the union, and Fisher, the president of the union, are at war primarily for the same reason the NFL’s Gene Upshaw and some ex-players and the NHL’s Bob Goodenow and Trevor Linden tangled just as viciously, albeit less publicly.

As the active players have become more wealthy, they’ve grown in their belief that their business acumen matches their athletic acumen and they should exercise more control over the union than the executive directors do.

Multiple media outlets, including Bloomberg, The New York Times, Yahoo!, SBJ and ESPN, are reporting the latest goings-on in the Fisher-Hunter blood bath. The focus now is on the Fisher-friendly narrative that, in an effort to stop Hunter from funneling jobs and business opportunities to his grown children, the Oklahoma City Thunder backup is calling for an independent audit of union business practices. The Fisher-friendly narrative emerged in the immediate aftermath of the union executive committee voting 8-0 for Fisher to resign as president.

bracket

BEST OF THE BEST

LeBron or Durant? Who tops our final ranking of 10 MVP candidates?

I’m not going to referee this dispute. From my vantage point, there are no “good guys” in this war. I wrote in October that Fisher was in over his head trying to moonlight as a labor negotiator against David Stern. Several sources told me then what the executive committee has made public now: that Fisher was at odds with Hunter and members of the executive committee because of Fisher’s penchant for solo decision-making and the perception he had been co-opted by David Stern. And while Hunter’s nepotism might not have damaged the union’s bargaining against the owners, I find the practice grossly immature, embarrassingly greedy, indefensible and — as the son of a former union leader — sadly predictable.

I get why the executive committee has sided with Hunter: Helping your family is easier to defend than the perception you helped David Stern.

Having said that, Hunter and Fisher both need to go. And so do Stern and his sidekick, Adam Silver.

The Hunter-Fisher feud is a symptom of a much larger problem for the NBA. The league lacks viable leadership, and I say that with all due respect to David Stern, one of the great sports commissioners. Stern, like Hunter, has stayed in power way too long. Stern has been commissioner since 1984. Hunter has been leading the players union since 1996. Left in the hands of the same person year after year, power corrupts, creates a sense of entitlement and stifles intellectual evolution.

Hunter doesn’t believe he’s done anything wrong. In his mind, he made the players union extremely wealthy. Why shouldn’t his children benefit from all he did for the union? Stern can no longer build enough consensus among ownership to push the league in a new direction. Despite a league overflowing with talent and good kids, Stern can’t grow the game. Record numbers are watching the NBA (and other sports) on TV because we have record numbers of people in the United States and record numbers of people with access to televisions.

With LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade, Derrick Rose, Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, Dwight Howard, Kevin Love, Dirk Nowitzki and Jeremy Lin, the NBA should be gaining ground on the NFL in terms of relevance.

Rather than an argument about the basketball-related-income split, the lockout should’ve been about fixing the game of basketball. The NFL’s most important advantage over the NBA is that football fans don’t choose between college football and pro football. Football fans are football fans. They like high school, college and pro. Hell, they like Arena Football. Basketball fans are segregated. Too many choose between the NBA and the college game. Too many college fans hate the NBA because the league “steals” its best players.

New NBA leadership — from the commissioner’s office to the NBPA — should aggressively figure out a way to financially incentivize young players to stay in college so that they bring an actual fan base with them when they join the NBA. The NBA, in conjunction with the college game’s television partners, can force the NCAA to massage its amateur rules.

American basketball can be fixed. But not by the current leaders. They’re stale. Too much of their energy is spent holding on to their power rather than trying to figure out how to take the game in a new, exciting direction.

When Hunter and Fisher are done killing each other in the media, let’s hope they — or someone — start in on Stern and Silver.

Rose, Lin rank 1-2 in jersey sales

Jeremy Lin outsold Kobe Bryant in official jersey sales in the past year, the NBA revealed Thursday, even though the New York Knicks phenom emerged to prominence only in February.

bracket

DANCE OFF

So you think you can dance? Don’t. Leave it to the pro dancers.

Fans rushed to get the former undrafted D-Leaguer’s name on their backs at an unprecedented rate when “Linsanity” took hold little more than two months ago as his breakthrough performances captured global attention.

The mass demand meant only Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose sold more jerseys than Lin last year. It is the first time the Chicago star, who was boosted by last season’s MVP title, has topped the annual list.

The fact that the figures were based on sales from April 2011 to the present day at the NBA Store in Manhattan, along with the NBAStore.com, will have helped boost Lin’s place given the added interest in jerseys in New York.

Yet his dominance of Lakers superstar Bryant still came as a big surprise, given Lin’s limited time in the spotlight and the dampening of the hysteria amid his dip in form and subsequent injury.

Bryant, who has topped the NBA jersey rankings six times including in three of the past five years, was demoted to third, ahead of LeBron James and Lin’s Knicks teammate Carmelo Anthony.

Dwyane Wade sold the sixth-most jerseys, ahead of Dirk Nowitzki, Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin and Rajon Rondo.

Magic hand Bobcats 22nd straight loss

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP)

With a roster that has seemingly gotten thinner by the game over the past month, no wins have come easy for the Orlando Magic down the stretch.

It’s why the Magic expected to get a strong effort from a woeful Charlotte Bobcats team that came in battling against all-time NBA futility.

The Bobcats hung tough, but the Magic made just shots from beyond the arc to hold on for a 102-95 victory Wednesday night, Charlotte’s 22nd consecutive loss.

J.J. Redick had six 3-pointers and scored a career-high 31 points as the Magic snapped a three-game losing streak and more importantly secured the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Ryan Anderson added 24 points and 13 rebounds and Jason Richardson had 17 points and nine rebounds for the Magic, who lost forward Glen Davis to a sprained right ankle. He is the latest injury to strike the Magic’s roster and drain an already shallow pool of Orlando big men following Dwight Howard’s season-ending back surgery last week. Davis limped off the court, though initial X-rays taken on the ankle in the locker room were negative. His status is day-to-day.

”Obviously, it was good for us,” Redick said. ”There was definitely some worry (about Davis). You immediately think to yourself `How are we going to go forward if he’s out for an extended period of time?’ But it sounds like he’ll be back this weekend. Hopefully he’ll have a great recovery.”

Richardson said while it was nice to lock up a first-round matchup with Indiana, it wasn’t at all their focus going into the game.

”We just wanted to play and wanted to win a game,” Richardson said. ”We haven’t won in a while, had some tough games and a tough road trip. I don’t think anybody was thinking about what was going on with the playoffs. We just wanted to win.”

D.J. Augustin led the Bobcats with 23 points, while Gerald Henderson had 17 and Derrick Brown 16.

bracket

IT’S A CINCH

Sam Amico hands out his awards, and top rookie is an easy call.

Charlotte (7-58) heads into its season finale on Thursday needing to beat New York to avoid the worst winning percentage in NBA history. The longest losing streak in NBA history was the 26 games by Cleveland last season. Should the Bobcats lose their finale against the Knicks, their 7-59 record and .106 winning percentage would eclipse the 1972-73 Philadelphia 76ers and their mark at .110, when they went 9-73.

”Nobody in here is used to losing like we have lost this year,” Henderson said. ”It just kind of humbles you and teaches you a lot about what it takes to be successful in this game. It also teaches you what it takes to have a good team in the NBA. It’s a learning process and hopefully we will come out with a win tomorrow.”

Bobcats coach Paul Silas said he was proud of his team’s effort.

”I was really happy with the way we played,” he said. ”We just came up a little short, but we gave it our all.”

The Magic were active early offensively and beginning to cruise late in the first quarter when Davis stepped on Byron Mullens’ foot and rolled his ankle.

The injury couldn’t have come at a more inopportune time for Orlando, which has seen starters Hedo Turkoglu (facial fracture) and Howard both undergo surgery in the past month.

Howard, of course, is gone for the rest of the season as he continues rehabilitation in California. Turkoglu may return as early as Thursday’s regular-season finale against Memphis and be ready for the postseason, but that is still to be determined.

The Bobcats used the moment as a spark and rallied after Davis’ injury to cut what was a 17-point first-half deficit to 67-66 late in the third quarter.

celebrities at nba games

COURTSIDE STARS

Celebrities like to see and be seen at NBA games.

Orlando got it back up to 10 points entering the fourth quarter before seeing one final push by Charlotte.

It was 89-84 when Henderson was whistled for his fifth personal foul and forced to the bench with just over 6 minutes to play. That was immediately followed by Richardson’s third 3-pointer of the game to give the Magic a little more breathing room.

A 3 a few possessions later by Redick made it 95-86 and following a Charlotte miss Redick nailed his final 3 of the game to push the lead back to 12 points with 4:26 to go.

The Magic kept around a 15-point lead throughout the first half before seeing the Bobcats close the gap to 10 at the break.

Orlando pulled away early by connecting on 10 of its 22 3-point attempts in the half, led by Redick’s five 3s and 16 points. Anderson added 14 points and Jameer Nelson eight points and seven assists.

”Basketball is a game of runs. They made their run and we made ours,” Nelson said. ”We’re very fortunate to come out with a victory.”

Said Magic coach Stan Van Gundy: ”It just keeps getting crazier by the day. … It was a good win even though the team you’re playing is 50 games under .500.”

Notes: The loss was Charlotte’s 11th straight on the road. … Brown left the game with a sprained right ankle in the fourth quarter. … The Magic improved to 25-5 when scoring 100 or more points. … Turkoglu has been cleared for contact by doctors after three weeks of rehab following surgery to repair facial fractures. He wore a new protective mask during the Magic’s morning walkthrough, but said it bothered him and needed to be adjusted before his return to action.

Thunder focused on team, Harden recovery


THE ENFORCERS: Here are 10 of the biggest, toughest, most ornery NBA defenders in the league.

OKLAHOMA CITY – James Harden was not inside Chesapeake Energy Arena on Tuesday night when the Oklahoma City Thunder played the Sacramento Kings.

That was to be expected.

Past that, the Thunder don’t know what to expect.

Harden suffered a concussion Sunday when he was elbowed by Los Angeles Lakers forward Metta World Peace. The NBA suspended World Peace for seven games Tuesday.

“If the league did it, you have to live with it,” OKC’s Kevin Durant said of the suspension. “We can move past it now. We’re just worried about getting James back in the locker room.”

Harden was absent from the locker room Tuesday evening, but he tweeted Tuesday morning that he’s “Feeling good.” Harden was not cleared to play and still is being evaluated. He will have to pass a series of league-mandated concussion tests before he is cleared to play.

That could happen Wednesday or it might not happen until much later. No one knows for sure, which is why Harden is listed officially as day to day.

“We will see him tomorrow morning,” Thunder coach Scott Brooks said Tuesday. “He’s doing good, but he still has to pass the tests and evaluation that the NBA has on concussions. We’ll see how he does tomorrow, and we’ll go from there.”

Tuesday, the Thunder beat Sacramento 118-110. The Thunder will wrap up the regular season with a home game Wednesday against Denver. Brooks said it was a possibility Harden could play against the Nuggets, but with the Thunder guaranteed to be the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference, there’s no urgency on the team’s part to play Harden.

However, when the playoffs start — either Saturday or Sunday — the need to have Harden back will become more urgent.

“It’s important to be healthy,” Brooks said. “It doesn’t matter how you’re playing if you’re not healthy and you’re going to have a tough time winning in this league. There’s eight very good teams in each conference in the playoffs. You’re not guaranteed a win because you have a higher seed.”

Harden’s absence would be significant, considering he was a leading candidate to win the league’s Sixth Man of the Year award. Harden is averaging 16.8 points per game — tops among all reserves in the league — and is shooting 49.1 percent from the field.

He was at the team’s Tuesday morning shootaround and seemed OK, forward Kevin Durant said.

“He looked fine,” Durant said. “Hopefully everything is fine.”

He’ll have to be better than that if the Thunder are going to challenge in the Western Conference. Harden’s scoring average, third on the team behind Durant and Russell Westbrook, will be nearly impossible to replace. No one else on the Thunder bench averages more than Daequan Cook’s 5.1 points. Harden is also averaging more than 31 minutes per game.

Tuesday also seemed to be an evaluation for the Thunder bench players. The starters didn’t play at all in the fourth quarter, leaving the game to Cook and reserves Derek Fisher and Royal Ivey. The Thunder bench came through with 48 points.

But Cook made his case for the one to take over Harden’s minutes. He was sensational Tuesday against the Kings, going for 19 points, all of which he scored in the fourth quarter as the Thunder outscored rallied. But reliance on Cook could be dangerous. He was great Tuesday, but he has been shaky of late, making more than one field goal in a game just once in the past eight games. He played 21 minutes against the Kings, but has played more than 13 just once in the past eight games as well. In that same span, Cook is 7-for-26 shooting.

“Daequan was phenomenal in the fourth and it was good for us to get that confidence,” Durant said. “Tonight going to him in the fourth, like we usually do James, Dequan was that guy, and he was able to come through for us.”

If Harden misses playoff time, look for Ivey, Fisher and possibly Reggie Jackson to take to play if the minutes are granted to Cook. Or consider, Brooks might just go with Westbrook for the entirety and keep the bench players on the bench.

“Whatever role Coach has me in, that’s what it is,” Ivey said. “I’m going out there to compete and do what I do.”

The only problem is that no one really does what Harden does. But Thunder players and Brooks weren’t talking playoffs Tuesday or worried about the World Peace suspension. They were more concerned about Harden’s health and when he could return.

“I’m focused on James and our team,” Brooks said. “You’re only concerned with James and our team. That’s the only thing I’m focused on. We’re moving on and going forward. I I was just made aware at halftime (of the suspension). That’s a league issue. We’re focused on making sure James comes back healthy and our team finishes out strong. I have nothing else to say about it.”