Had you done so, perhaps you would have a better understanding of my love for amateur boxing and my commitment to protect fighters by giving them the best possible opportunities this business can offer.” Butler, in his letter addressed to Tyson that was released to the media, said, “These young boxers are foregoing their Olympic hopes and the hopes of our nation in exchange for a professional boxing contract now. You are offering these athletes pennies on the dollar of what they could be worth with an Olympic medal, or even potentially just being an Olympian.” Tyson, a former amateur heavyweight champion who just missed making the 1984 U.S. Olympic team, defended his signing of 152-pound prospect Erickson Lubin on Tuesday, the day he turned 18. “No one knows better than I the pitfalls of amateur and professional boxing,” Tyson wrote. “This is precisely why I am compelled to make Iron Mike Productions a transparent company. Our priority is the well-being of our fighters and to produce the most exciting fights we can and in the process uplift the sport of boxing.” According to The Post, Tyson added, “I love my country and I love the liberties living in a democracy affords. These young fighters have worked diligently and deserve the right to pursue the best path they deem fit for themselves. Unfortunately, many of them can’t wait around for a very slim shot at Olympic glory.” Tyson said USA Boxing’s poor record of producing medalists in the last several Olympics might have something to do with young boxers deciding to forgo Olympic training for a pro career. “Our country hasn’t had a male boxing gold medalist since 2004 (Andre Ward) , which could be why many young hopefuls decide to turn professional sooner,” he wrote. He also wrote, “Many of these boxers are like me in that they are from poverty-stricken communities and boxing is their only way to a better life. They have obligations beyond your personal vision for them. No one has the right to question the path a fighter chooses in pursuit of their American dream.” The sentiment was echoed by USOC CEO Scott Blackmun, who said that “I don’t think you can take away the choices that our athletes have. They have to weigh the importance of an Olympic medal . .
USA rugby gets TV time on new sports network
Yet the consistent word in USA Basketball circles remains that Hibbert is a long shot to ultimately receive the needed clearance to make him eligible for the Team USA squad that will compete in the 2014 FIBA World Cup in Spain or the 2016 Olympics in Brazil. And here’s why: Turns out there is a little-known FIBA bylaw that allows for Hibbert, through USA Basketball, to apply for permission to play for Team USA after appearing in one game for Jamaica in 2010 … despite the fact that it’s been drilled into us all for years that players who represent one country at senior level internationally do so knowing they are essentially ineligible to switch allegiances and play for another country later. The little-known rule states that a player who has represented one country after the age of 17 may “exceptionally request” that FIBA allow him to play for another country’s national team if that national team is “of the player’s country of origin” and if the request is deemed to be “in the interest of the development of basketball in that country.” However … While Hibbert satisfies half of those requirements, having been born a New Yorker, I’m told USAB’s pessimism stems from the fact that it would be a gargantuan stretch to convince FIBA that adding the Indiana Pacers ‘ All-Star center to Mike Krzyzewski’s roster would have even a sliver of impact on the state of the game in this country. (The inverse, incidentally, is true in the case of New York Knicks forward Amar’e Stoudemire , who has been wooed by the heavyweight likes of former Israeli prime minister Shimon Peres to join Israel’s national team after Amar’e unexpectedly applied for Israeli citizenship over the summer and with his USA Basketball career clearly over. Stoudemire could undoubtedly satisfy the second of the above requirements, since he’d surely spark tons of fresh interest in basketball in Israel if he made that move, but there’s no getting around the fact that Amar’e was born in Florida.) As for Hibbert … The real shame here is that the Jamaican Basketball Association appears to now support Hibbert’s hopes of swaying FIBA, which the Indy big man addressed this week in an interview with Pacers.com . In two late-July tweets, one Jamaican official said that his federation — grateful Hibbert played for them in one major tournament at Centro Basket in 2010 — has “always been willing to let Roy go” and “will never hinder his desires.” Yet it appears that Hibbert’s only shot, in a process FIBA says must be initiated by USA Basketball, is convincing the sport’s international governing body that the prospect of switching from Team Jamaica to Team USA would have some sort of far-reaching domestic impact beyond merely making Coach K’s talent pool deeper. Hibbert told Pacers.com that “there has been some dialogue” and that “international lawyers” are working on his behalf, but the vibe still emanating from USAB — as it was in July when Coach K had nearly 30 of Hibbert’s peers convened in Las Vegas for a mini-camp — continues to be pessimistic when it comes to ever seeing Hibbert in red, white and blue. The solace for Krzyzewski and Team USA chief Jerry Colangelo is that, with or without Hibbert, they should have many more big men to choose from for the next two major events, after Tyson Chandler ranked as the only recognized center on Team USA’s roster for the 2012 Olympics in London following the injury withdrawals of Dwight Howard and Chris Bosh . In the Vegas mini-camp, Team USA had no less than seven invitees who could be classified as centers auditioning for the right to join a frontcourt rotation that we already know will feature Minnesota’s Kevin Love . Anthony Davis (New Orleans), DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento), Derrick Favors (Utah), DeAndre Jordan (L.A.
Roy Hibbert’s Team USA chances bleak
(Natacha Pisarenko / Associated Press / September 28, 2013) By Diane Pucin October 1, 2013, 11:52 a.m. For those clamoring for more rugby on television, your wish has been granted. USA Rugby has announced a broadcasting partnership with FOX Sports for the upcoming mens Eagles match against the New Zealand Maori All Blacks Nov. 9 at PPL Park in Philadelphia. The inaugural Black and Blue Match, presented by USA Rugby and New Zealand Rugby Union sponsor AIG, will kick off at 4 p.m. PST Nov. 9, with the broadcast to be aired on FOX Sports 1 Nov. 10 at 9 a.m. USA Rugby is very excited about FOX Sports 1 airing the match from Philadelphia, USA Rugby Chief Commercial Officer Jon Persch said. FOX Sports 1 offers USA Rugby the greatest number of viewers with the new channel being offered in 90 million homes.” FOX Sports 1 is the newest national 24-hour multi-sport channel, launched Aug. 17 in more than 90 million homes across the U.S., the largest sports network launch in television history.
Miss USA Erin Brady’s stalker found unfit for trial by court doctors
If prosecutors do not challenge the finding, he will be involuntarily committed to a state psychiatric hospital. By Shayna Jacobs / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Friday, October 4, 2013, 2:11 AM Miss USA 2013 Erin Brady was allegedly confronted at her Manhattan apartment in August. Related Stories A homeless nut accused of stalking Miss USA 2013 at her swanky Manhattan apartment has been found unfit for trial by court doctors. Lanre Orimabogunje, 28, allegedly accosted stunner Erin Brady on Aug. 5. I’ve been tracking you since you were born … I have GPS. You wear an invisible crown, he allegedly told her before trying to touch her head. RELATED: MISS USAS STALKER ARRESTED AT BROOKLYN HOMELESS SHELTER Orimabogunje was arrested at a Brooklyn shelter after the creepy encounter. Prosecutors asked for an adjournment Thursday to decide whether theyll challenge the fitness finding. If there is no challenge, or if prosecutors bring one and lose, Orimabogunje will be involuntarily committed to a state psychiatric hospital. He was charged with stalking, harassment and trespassing and would face up to a year in jail on the top count.