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Robert Horry And Richard Jefferson Explained Why JJ Redick Can’t Really Be Mad At The Pelicans

At last Thursday’s NBA Trade Deadline, one of the final deals that was announced saw the Pelicans trade JJ Redick to the Mavs as Dallas looks to bolster their depth by adding a veteran shooter for the playoff push. From a basketball perspective, the deal made sense. Redick wasn’t playing in New Orleans anymore and had made clear he wanted out, and he’s a snug fit, at least offensively, for what Dallas needs.

However, Redick had personal reasons for his trade request in that he wanted to be closer to his son in Brooklyn, hoping for a trade to one of the teams in that area — mainly the Nets, Sixers, Celtics, or Knicks. On Wednesday, Redick took aim at the Pelicans front office on his podcast for what he felt was blindsiding him with a deal to Dallas, which doesn’t get him closer to his family, with the COVID-19 protocols making it difficult for him to see them. Redick felt David Griffin didn’t “honor his word” after their conversations about his desire to get back to the Northeast, and made his feelings towards the Pelicans front office very clear.

This has furthered the debate about player empowerment and the buyout market, as Redick was under the impression that if he weren’t dealt to a team in that area he would get bought out and join one of those teams. On Wednesday’s episode of The Jump on ESPN, Robert Horry and Richard Jefferson were asked about the Redick situation and, somewhat surprisingly, neither of the former players were siding with Redick.

Jefferson’s early “so did everyone else” about Redick wanting to be in Brooklyn is pretty funny, but it’s an interesting conversation.

As Horry notes, this is the business of basketball and the Pelicans front office’s first job is to do what’s best for the team. If there’s a trade out there that brings them assets back, that is a better move than turning that down to buyout Redick and let him go to his desired locale. Horry also points out that Redick isn’t exactly the caliber of player or have the standing within the New Orleans organization to be able to demand where he wants to go. Where Kyle Lowry can do that with Toronto — which, the limited options was a reason he wasn’t dealt — Redick doesn’t have that kind of stature with the Pelicans to have commanded the goodwill to send him to his desired location. He was still traded to a contender and a team he probably can have a solid role on in the Mavs, he just wasn’t dealt to the most coveted destination in the league right now in Brooklyn.

Jefferson then points out that Redick has embraced the “hired gun” life in recent years, inking short-term deals in order to get big money, and while pandemic restrictions certainly change the calculus for a lot of people, his choice was to go to a situation where he could make the most but it came at the cost of being further from his family. It’s a bit surprising that neither former player seems to have any sympathy for Redick’s situation, but they also are very pragmatic in their argument whereas Redick’s frustration comes from a more emotional place. Both are understandable viewpoints, but hearing two former players point out a lot of areas where Redick’s “sob story,” as Jefferson put it, falls short is pretty interesting.

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Netflix Is Paying An Absurd Amount Of Money To Give Two ‘Knives Out’ Sequels To The World

When it was first announced, Knives Out was originally treated like simply a fun film for Daniel Craig thing to do while the next Bond film, No Time to Die, found a new director. But it proved far more than that. An enjoyably retro mystery and an enjoyably eccentric follow-up to Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi, it was a box office smash that also allowed Craig, the most serious of the big screen 007s, to have some fun, solve a convoluted murder, do his finest Foghorn Leghorn accent. Like any good whodunnit it begged for a sequel, possibly with Craig switching accents. And now it’s getting at least two.

Netflix is forking over a ridiculous amount of money for Knives Out 2 and 3. How much? $400 million, says Deadline, though Variety is reporting $450 million. Whichever the number, it’s a lot for movies which find our snooping hero largely sitting in rooms with a who’s who ensemble, each of them a potential homicidal maniac. Mind you, this is not the budget of either of them; it’s just for the rights to make two more adventures with Craig’s amateur sleuth Benoit Blanc.

Johnson envisioned the first Knives Out as his homage to classic murder mysteries, like the many, many novels of Agatha Christie, particularly the ones revolving around crime-solvers Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot. The latter is already the subject of his own big screen franchise, starring and directed by Kenneth Branagh, so maybe it’s time to resurrect France’s Inspector Maigret? In the meanwhile, two more Knives Out sequels means Johnson is swimming in crime: It was recently announced that he was teaming with Natasha Lyonne for a murder mystery show that sounds like the Columbo reboot we all deserve.

(Via Deadline and Variety)

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Patricio ‘Pitbull’ Freire Plans On Making A Statement At Bellator 255

Patricio “Pitbull” Freire (31-4) is on one of the best runs in all of Bellator. He’s the king of the featherweight and lightweight divisions and is two years removed from knocking out UFC lightweight title contender Michael Chandler. So why is ‘Pitbull’ heading into his main event against Emmanuel Sanchez (20-4) as part of Bellator’s debut on Showtime Friday night with a chip on his shoulder? The double champ believes he’s being overlooked by the national media and he’s ready to turn that narrative upside down.

“Unfortunately, I believe a big part of the media is political,” Freire told Uproxx Sports. “It doesn’t make sense that Michael Chandler is fighting for a title (in UFC) and he’s getting all the attention when I’ve knocked Chandler out and I don’t get that recognition. I got ranked 21 (in Tapology’s featherweight rankings) and he’s ranked fourth (in Tapology’s lightweight rankings). How is it possible?”

Freire was named Bellator’s top pound-for-pound fighter in the organization’s inaugural rankings earlier this week. But that’s not enough for the featherweight and lightweight champion, who hopes to put on a show against Sanchez in a rematch three years in the making.

“I’ve always been mentally strong and I’m 100 percent ready for this fight. I’ve always had the toughest mindset in the game and I’m going to continue to do so,” Freire said. “I’m not underestimating him by any means. He brought one of the toughest fights of my career. He’s a complete fighter, but I haven’t seen much of a difference in him from that fight to now.”

Friday night’s main event represents a stepping stone for Freire, with higher aspirations than simply defending his featherweight belt and moving on to the finals of the Featherweight World Grand Prix Tournament against the unbeaten A.J. McKee.

“(I want to) break records and continue to write history as one of the best in the world,” Freire said. “(Moving down to 135 pounds) is something I’ve talked about before. It’s something I wish I could do. But I’m already in two divisions. To go down to a third, I don’t think it’s realistic, but it’s definitely something I wanted to do in the past. I think the next step in this game is to do a cross-promotional fight to see who really is the best. Everyone knows it’s me, but everyone is here to deny it. I can bet $1 million when I win this Grand Prix that I am the best in the world.”

As far as who Freire has in mind, he wants the best of the best.

“The ones that have the belt, Volkanovski, Holloway. I’ve beaten Chandler and that’s that. I don’t need to fight Chandler,” Freire said. “(Bellator) is just like me. We like to do these things to prove we are the best. We’ve done cross-promotional fights with RIZIN. Scott (Coker) would like to do that with the UFC for a second time.”

Freire will face off against Sanchez on Friday night at Bellator 255 at 9 p.m. ET on Showtime, which is free to non-subscribers across streaming services, online platforms and TV providers. Bellator 255 will kick off three consecutive weeks of fights, with Bellator 256 scheduled for April 9 and Bellator 257 on April 16.

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COVID-Stricken Sarah Palin Comes Out As Pro-Mask And Pro-Vaccine: ‘Anyone Can Catch This’

If you thought Sarah Palin‘s appearance on The Masked Singer was her most surprising public performance yet, the die-hard conservative has come out in support of wearing masks and getting vaccinated after being hit with COVID-19. In a new interview with PEOPLE, Palin urged Americans to take the pandemic seriously after it hit her family in remote Alaska, citing herself as proof that “anyone can catch this.” Despite being a well-known Donald Trump supporter, which often goes hand-in-hand with protesting COVID regulations and refusing to wear a mask, Palin is urging Americans to do everything in their power to take the threat of the virus seriously, which includes masking up and signing up for the vaccine:

“I strongly encourage everyone to use common sense to avoid spreading this and every other virus out there,” she says in her statement. “There are more viruses than there are stars in the sky, meaning we’ll never avoid every source of illness or danger … But please be vigilant, don’t be frightened, and I advise reprioritizing some personal time and resources to ensure as healthy a lifestyle as you can create so when viruses do hit, you have at least some armor to fight it.”

While Palin hasn’t been as actively vocal about downplaying the threat of COVID as other Republican politicians, she did play her part in protesting lockdown measures. The former vice-presidential candidate visited a Dallas salon after the conservative owner was jailed for refusing to close during the early months of the pandemic in 2020. Palin can be seen at the salon without a mask on below:

However, the fact that a prominent conservative like Palin is now taking the virus seriously should, hopefully, encourage other Republicans to do the same.


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DaBaby Was Intrigued By A Group Of Students’ ‘Imaginary Stories’ About Him

After exploding into the public consciousness with his rapid-fire flow and tongue-in-cheek sense of humor two years ago, DaBaby remains an object of fascination with fans of all ages even despite his somewhat less than kid-friendly subject matter. A recent meme currently circulating the weirder corners of social media turned the North Carolina rapper’s head into an automobile (apparently in response to a lyric from his song “Suge”), while a teacher’s free-writing assignment for her class turned up no fewer than four short stories featuring the rapper — in Spanish, no less.

When the teacher remarked on the coincidence on Twitter, her comment caught the rapper’s eye, prompting him to ask her, “Send them to me.” She did so via a thread of replies showing the stories in the students’ own handwriting on notebook paper, including one with an illustration of the rapper apparently getting out of jail along with one of the astronauts from the similarly-ubiquitous mobile game Among Us. In one of the writings, the student even makes reference to the “DaBaby Convertible” meme.

The stories are weird and nonsensical in the way kids’ stories usually are. One prominently features a Kanye West action revenge movie-style plotline, which has been a source of confusion and amusement for commenters. You can see the full thread below along with some… iffy translations — and, just for fun, one of the best DaBaby Convertible videos out.

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Jeffrey Dean Morgan Seemingly Suggests ‘The Walking Dead’ Was Canceled And Was Supposed To Go Past Season 11

Back in September, AMC announced that The Walking Dead would come to end in Season 11, which the network extended to 24 episodes that will run into late 2022. After spending over a decade as AMC’s top series, it made sense that the zombie show was finally coming in for a landing, and surely, the showrunners had been preparing to draw things to a close. However, actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan has made some comments in a recent interview that seem to suggest that AMC pulled the plug on The Walking Dead and basically forced the creative team to wrap things up. According to Morgan, the showrunners had plans that went beyond Season 11, and they were just as shocked by the show ending as the cast and crew.

In other words, it sounds a lot like The Walking Dead was canceled. Via Collider:

The news, when we got it in the middle of the pandemic, was a complete surprise, not only to me and the rest of the actors, but to everybody involved in the show from production. Scott Gimple and Angela Kang had no idea either. It came from nowhere and there was such a huge pivot. I think they had Season 11 all mapped out, where they were going to go, and suddenly it became, ‘We also have to close the story, in a way.’ It took everybody by surprise, so it was a massive pivot.

Morgan is currently filming the final season of The Walking Dead in Georgia, which will take an entire year to complete. And judging by his latest appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, the actor is barely a few months into production and is already running into trouble. After taking a few too many weed gummies while settling into his home for the next year, Morgan woke up to find out he had custom-built a new Tesla online and put a down payment on the six-figure vehicle while high out of his mind. “This was a very bad mistake,” he told Kimmel before walking through the sheepish phone call he had to make to Tesla to get out of purchasing the pricey electric car.

(Via Collider)

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JJ Redick Said David Griffin Didn’t ‘Honor His Word’ By Trading Him To Dallas

JJ Redick was among the last players dealt at the NBA’s trade deadline, as he was sent from New Orleans to Dallas where the Mavs hope he will provide them with some additional three-point shooting and a veteran presence.

Redick being dealt came as little surprise to most, as he had been on the trade block for months, but he was “shocked” by the trade, in particular where he was traded, because he had made clear where he wanted to go. Redick’s family lives in Brooklyn and he wanted to be dealt somewhere in the Northeast where he could easily drive to see his family on off days and they could more readily see him play in the midst of COVID-19 protocols. Dallas, of course, is further from Brooklyn than New Orleans, and Redick felt he had an understanding with David Griffin and the Pelicans front office that if he were dealt, it’d be to a team in the Northeast or he would get bought out after the deadline.

The veteran shooter discussed all of this on his podcast, The Old Man and the Three on Wednesday, and took aim at Griffin for not being one to “honor his word” by dealing him to a team that wasn’t in his preferred location.

The entire situation is a tricky one and falls into a similar category as the current debate about whether the buyout market needs to be regulated or tweaked to avoid having veterans push out of bad situations and onto championship contending teams for the minimum. With Redick, it’s more than just being on a competitor, as he notes that Dallas is a great organization and has a team that’s intriguing to play for. It’s an issue of location and wanting to be closer to his kid, which is a more than understandable desire. However, as is always said at this time of year, the NBA is a business, and if a team was offering a haul the Pelicans believes makes them better, even if they wanted to do right by Redick, their primary job is to do right by the organization and make the team better.

The buyout market has formed because of the need to keep agents and players happy with your organization, a long con for the next time you have to work with that player’s agent and they are telling them whether that org is good or not. However, sometimes a player is too good for a buyout and the teams he desires aren’t the ones putting forth the best offers. That appears to be the case with Redick, a player many teams have a use for as a shooter, but that wasn’t a need, at least in a trade, for a team like the Nets or Sixers or Celtics after they dealt for Evan Fournier. As such, it was a team in Dallas that had the need and was willing to part with a package that interested the Pelicans, and while Redick’s frustration and hurt feelings are understandable, in the same way, so is how the Pelicans went about this deal.

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What’s On Tonight: ‘Godzilla Vs. Kong’ Lines Up A Blockbuster Fight On HBO Max

Godzilla vs. Kong (HBO Max) — As you are well aware, we’ve seen a very long year without blockbusters (or almost any movies at all) in theaters, but a mega-blockbuster has arrived in both streaming and theatrical formats. It’s quite literally an actioner of gigantic proportions in a battle (starring Alexander Skarsgard and Rebecca Hall) for all of the ages. Not only does Kong punch Godzilla, but Godzilla punches back. It’s not quite Fast 9 in terms of ripped dudes with one-liners, but damn, it’s one hell of a movie event.

K-Pop Evolution (YouTube Originals) — Whether you’re a newcomer or a die-hard fan of K-Pop, you’ll enjoy this history of hitmakers and fandoms during this 7-part series that charts the global phenomenon’s rise to worldwide prominence. This series includes appearances from SuperM, H.O.T., BoA, SUPER JUNIOR, Kang Daniel, Red Velvet, EXO, KARA, Ha:tfelt, and many more artists.

Haunted: Latin America (Netflix) — The chilling reenactments of paranormal house sightings comes to life, south of the U.S.-Mexico border, in this (theoretically) reality-based series.

Laundry Guy (Discovery+) — Renowned laundry expert Patric Richardson will give domestic hope to those who are not well-versed in the art of fabric softener and caring for vintage coats. He’s salvaging items that were once thought lost, including precious wedding dresses and stuffed animals. It’s surprisingly emotional!

Riverdale (CW, 8:00pm) — School spirit is waning, so Archie and Veronica must do their best after the Bulldogs can’t stop losing football games, and Jughead is trying to pay things forward.

Nancy Drew (CW, 9:00pm) — Nancy’s got a new investigating gig for a florist, and she gets some unexpected help from Gil Bobbsey. Meanwhile, Ace is dealing with a cryptic text message.

Extinction: The Facts (PBS, 8:00pm) — David Attenborough hosts this exploration of a crisis of biodiversity that’s led to a million species facing a legit extinction risk, which (in turn) places mankind in peril.

Snowfall (FX, 10:00pm) — The John Singleton-co-created series sees Franklin blindsided while tracking down stolen cash is the name of the game for Teddy and Avi on a voyage to Panama.

Jimmy Kimmel Live! — Jamie Foxx, Lauren Graham

In case you missed these picks last Wednesday:

The Day Sports Stood Still (HBO, 8:00pm) — As sports fans will never forget, March 2020 saw the unprecedented shutdown of their world due to the COVID-19 pandemic taking root. Director Antoine Fuqua helms this glimpse behind the curtain of the abrupt stoppage, which also includes an exploration of the cultural reckoning happening through protests against racial injustice. Slowly but surely, the NBA bubble brought sports back to life amid quarantine life. Expect to see interviews from everyone from team owner Mark Cuban to the NBA’s Donovan Mitchell, Danilo Gallinari, and Karl-Anthony Towns, along with the NHL’s Ryan Reaves, the NFL’s Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, and Olympians Daryl Homer and Laurie Hernandez.

Seaspiracy (Netflix film) — This documentary (from the co-creator of Cowspiracy) hopes to illuminate how human behavior inflicts alarming and widespread harm upon the seas. From pollution caused by fishing gear and plastics to all of the damage caused by fishing itself (both illegal and otherwise), humans are taking a toll on the planet that could jeopardize its future (and mankind’s future as well).

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Cardi B Calls Out Utah For Cracking Down On Porn Rather Than Addressing Real Problems

When politics buff Cardi B sees something she doesn’t like going on in government, she’s almost guaranteed to comment on it. Most recently, Cardi shared her thoughts on a recently-passed anti-pornography law in Utah which mandates filters on mobile devices and tablets sold in-state. The law is the culmination of a conservative-led drive to turn porn into a “public health hazard,” even though the state is ending its mask mandate during a pandemic that’s killed over half a million people.

Clearly, she doesn’t like the law, drawing a comparison between its proponents’ stated intention of “protecting the children” and the prevalence of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints organization in the state. “I respect everyone’s religion but Utah restricting porn and not regulating the disgusting things that happens in the FLDS,” she observed. “That cult is disturbing.”

She elaborated in a second tweet, ““I will understand if they restrict porn because the state is very religious however they allow soo much disgusting things out there that they claim is part of their religion and that’s MOLESTING CHILDREN …Look it up!”

The FLDS Church is described as one of the largest of the fundamentalist Mormon sects and is designated a cult by the Southern Poverty Law Center. It’s received criticism for its practice of polygamy and racist attitudes toward Black people and interracial relationships and accused of trafficking underage girls across state lines, as well as child labor abuses.

Cardi is no stranger to drawing the ire of certain groups. Her song “WAP” is still a hot topic among conservative circles, even as those commentators ignored or brushed off racist terrorist attacks in the US, minimized a global pandemic, and tried to credit Donald Trump with the successes of the current administration.

Cardi B is a Warner Music artist. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.

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Matthew McConaughey Is Giving ‘Serious Consideration’ To Running For Office, Y’All

If Governor Matthew McConaughey sounds alright, alright, alright to you, you’re in luck: the Oscar-winning actor is serious about running for office.

“I’m not teasing the idea or anything. I’m actually trying to look at the idea and give it serious consideration. I have a new chapter for myself, personally in my life. I believe it is in some sort of leadership role,” McConaughey told CNBC’s Carl Quintanilla during an interview from his Airstream trailer in Austin, Texas, on Wednesday. “I don’t know what that role is. I don’t know my category. We’ve been talking about the ‘why’ of leadership and even, I would say, we need some more good leaders. And I’m not just talking about me. I’m talking about you out there, everyone out there, we need leadership.”

He continued, “We’ve gotten to this spot where, ‘You voice your opinion and it opposes mine. My gut reaction — our gut reaction — is, ‘Oh, you must be saying that at the exclusion of mine’… If I say I’m a believer, someone will say, ‘Oh, you must not believe in science.’ Well, I didn’t say that, I’m a believer and I believe in science… two different opinions can exist at the same time.” For instance: you might think Magic Mike is a bad movie; I think it’s a masterpiece. We’re both entitled to our opinion (but I’m right).

McConaughey has referred to himself as “aggressively centrist” in the past (his politics are a mystery even on the local level), but if he does run, he’ll likely do well in his politically-divided home state of Texas. The UT professor helped raise $7.8 million for those affected by Winter Storm Uri through his Just Keep Livin Texas Relief Fund.

(Via KXAN)