Sorry, Clipper Darrell, the Clippers have a new No. 1 fan.

As part of the official terms in the franchise sale to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Shelly Sterling will receive the titles of "Clippers Number One Fan" and "Owner Emeritus" for the rest of her life.

Sterling, the estranged wife of former owner Donald Sterling, was instrumental in the sale after tapes were released in April of her 80-year-old husband spewing racist remarks. That $2 billion transaction was finalized this week in Los Angeles Superior Court.

Perhaps as a kind gesture toward Shelly, who helped expedite the sale, the team's new ownership threw in some nice provisions. These include the promise of three championship rings should the Clippers win it all.


As for a provision that would've given Shelly Sterling up to $200 million in franchise equity through a charitable foundation in her name, the LA Times reports that will not be exercised because her husband didn't consent to the sale.

Still, this is a pretty good haul for Sterling. Aside from these perks, the $2 billion from Ballmer goes to the Sterling Family Trust. Based on recent legal and medical findings, she is now the sole trustee of that trust.

It'll be interesting to see whether she takes advantage of the tickets, as she may not be positively received by Clippers fans. She's been dogged by controversy over the past few years, and hasn't received the best publicity in the wake of the sale.

As for her new title, well, that's still up for debate.


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When Chris Sale isn't pitching for the White Sox, perhaps he can tutor your high school student in SAT vocabulary.

Sale, a three-time MLB All-Star, has a special word challenge for himself during his interview with reporters after each start this season. He must include a word designated by Bryan Johnson, the team's video coordinator, in proper context.

Scott Merkin of MLB.com has documented each word since Sale began this caper in April:

  • Juxtapose (April 11)
  • Consternation (April 17)
  • Ameliorate (May 22)
  • Acquiesce (May 27)
  • Capitulate (June 1)
  • Nascence (June 7)
  • Ruminate (June 12)
  • Repudiate (June 18)
  • Antithetic (June 23)
  • Dichotomy (June 28)
  • Cacophony (July 4)
  • Adjudicate (July 9)
  • Ubiquitous (July 21)
  • Voracious (July 26)
  • Prescience (Aug. 1)
  • Amalgamation (Aug. 6)

"When you commit to something as serious as this, you have to ride it out through the good and the bad," Sale told Merkin. "We had said that we were going to do it every start this year. In a sense, me and Bryan are on a team now, and I can't let my team down. I have two teams to play for a night."

Here's video footage from MLB.com of Sale's using ameliorate, capitulate and ubiquitous:

Merkin writes, "There's really no deep meaning behind this word-of-the-start tale, aside from illustrating how comfortable Sale has become as an elite Major League starter -- not to mention how much enjoyment he seems to gain from a game that can be one part exasperating and another part exhilarating."

Sale was a criminal justice major at Florida Gulf Coast University, a school perhaps best known for its Dunk City basketball team that beat Georgetown in the 2013 NCAA tournament.

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Kevin Durant is still two years away from becoming a free agent, but the tampering for the services of the reigning NBA MVP has already begun.

The rapper Drake, who is employed by the Raptors as the team's "global ambassador," went out of his way to thank Durant for coming to his fifth annual OVO Fest in Toronto:

“You know, my brother Kevin Durant was kind enough to come to the show tonight and watch us," Drake says in a clip that has been widely circulated on YouTube. "I just want him to see what would happen if he came to play in Toronto. Let him know what would happen.”

Here's the video of the comments, with some explicit language at the end:

Because Drake has an official role with the Raptors, the NBA fined the organization $25,000 for tampering. That's the same amount the NBA reportedly fined the New York Knicks after President Phil Jackson discussed the possibility of hiring Derek Fisher as head coach. These fines are slaps on the wrist compared to the $100,000 fine the league levied against Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban for discussing LeBron James before he officially became a free agent.

Drake's hospitality at OVO Fest appears to have made a good impression on Durant:


While it hasn't always been positive, the publicity that Drake has generated for the Raptors is certainly worth the $25,000 fine. The Toronto native is been at the center of the team's image revival, and with his extensive network of connections, he figures to be an important part of the Raptors' future.

Durant, meanwhile, has left open the possibility that he would follow in LeBron James' footsteps and play for his hometown team, the Washington Wizards.

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The next time Paul George steps on an NBA court, he'll be wearing a new number.

The Pacers star forward, who suffered a compound fracture to his right leg during a scrimmage at Team USA camp in Las Vegas, will be changing his digits from 24 to 13. ESPN's Darren Rovell confirmed that George applied for and was granted the right to switch numbers. The deadline to apply was the first week in March.

George has been dropping hints about the number change for weeks. On Twitter he's been using the word "trece," which is Spanish for 13:





The idea for the number change may have come from the popular sportswriter Bill Simmons. In a Grantland column published in May 2013, Simmons suggested George consider the change in part because it would lead to a catchy nickname: PG-13:

"By the way, I have some advice that will help Paul George become a household name. He should change his number immediately from no. 24 to no. 13. Here's why … can you think of anyone being helped by a nickname more than Paul George suddenly becoming “PG-13?” Uh-oh, PG-13 is heating up! Warning, this game contains strong language, violence and a possible heat check! We might have to make this performance rated “R” -- it’s too hot to handle!"

Asked about the idea on Jimmy Kimmel Live! in January, George said, "That's not bad, that's got a ring to it."

Rovell writes that the NBA requires a player who changes numbers but remains on the same team to buy all of his old jerseys from the marketplace. And while George doesn't have to do that because he filed his change request on time, he's purchasing all of his old jerseys anyway. George, whose five-year, $90 million extension kicks in at the start of the 2014-2015 season, is known for his generosity. Last year he bought and distributed every single ticket to his alma mater Fresno State's home opener against Cal State Northridge.

George is one of several of the league's top players to change numbers during his career. LeBron James began his career as No. 23 but switched to No. 6 when he signed with Miami. Now that he's coming back to Cleveland, James will again wear No. 23.

Michael Jordan briefly wore No. 45 during his return to the Chicago Bulls because his old number, 23, had been retired. But he eventually switched back to No. 23.

Kobe Bryant wore No. 8 early in his career but switched to No. 24 in 2006. George grew up outside Los Angeles and wore No. 24 out of respect for Bryant.

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In another example of how Rex Ryan is a rare breed, the Jets coach reversed roles with a veteran reporter at a press conference, then proceeded to discuss his respect for the media.

After practice Saturday, rather than fielding questions as usual, Ryan invited ESPN New York's Rich Cimini, the dean of Jets beat writers, to take the podium. Ryan then sat among reporters and asked some questions of his own.

During the give and take with Cimini, Ryan said he saw how coaches and reporters were alike because both have a genuine love of the game. That was the basis of Ryan's understanding and consideration for reporters.

"I always told you guys I appreciate the job that you have," Ryan said. "When I first came here, we tried to provide an environment to where we recognize that."

That was not a sentiment shared by his dad, Buddy Ryan, who was head coach of the Eagles and Cardinals.

"He thought the media was the enemy," Rex said. "You guys are the enemy only when we lose. I get it: We lose. It's going to be negative articles."

Ryan also wondered about handling slow-news days, a reporter's nightmare.

"You've got a job to do," Ryan said. "You know it is a boring day, a flat day, and you've still got a job to do to ask. Is that the toughest thing?"

Cimini, showing the sensibility that has helped him last more than a quarter century on the Jets beat, responded: "When we have a boring, flat day like you said, we come into the press conference hoping -- counting on -- that you will give us something to write about. Giving us a good quote, or some news, a headline."

And oh yeah, ever get tired of all those Tim Tebow questions?

"I'll admit it," Ryan said. "I absolutely did."

Here is the full experience in two clips that run nearly nine minutes in total, via NJ.com:

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One year ago, Ted Lasso turned heads by leaving the American football sphere to coach soccer in England. Unfortunately for Lasso, the transition to Tottenham Hotspur from the NFL was not a success and the coach lost his job.

Of course, Lasso is actually actor Jason Sudeikis, a former "Saturday Night Live" cast member and star of the films "Horrible Bosses" and "We're the Millers." NBC holds the TV rights to the Premier League in the United States and uses Lasso/Sudeikis to play up the coverage.

This year, Lasso again returns to YouTube to promote NBC Sports. This year, Lasso has moved into broadcasting as he waits for a coaching post. Cameos from Tim Howard, Arlo White and Rebecca Lowe:

The Premier League returns to NBC and its affiliates Aug. 16. The end of the video teases Lasso being offered a job at Leicester City F.C., a club promoted to the Premiership this season after finishing first in The Championship (English second-tier division) in 2013-14. This should lead to a third video in the series.

For reference, here was Lasso's first appearance last year:

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On Monday, Metta World Peace signed with the Sichuan Blue Whales of the Chinese Basketball Association. The world would be kidding itself if it did not expect eccentric dominoes to follow.

On Wednesday, China Daily, an English-language newspaper, reported World Peace plans to change his name to "Panda Friend." World Peace, born Ronald William Artest Jr., made his initial name change in September 2011.

The former All-Star, NBA Defensive Player of the Year and NBA champion had foreshadowed the name change for the past week. He started his transition to China with a nod to the nation's famous animal based in the Sichuan province.


Then he started hinting at some name changes while negotiating his contract.




World Peace is known for his eccentricities during an NBA career that featured both praise -- he won the 2011 J. Walker Kennedy Citizenship Award–and controversy -- he was suspended 86 games 2004-05 for attacking a fan in stands. On his first name change, World Peace said in a statement: "Changing my name was meant to inspire and bring youth together all around the world."

Initial reports claimed World Peace's new name would simply be 'Panda Friend.' It now appears the name is a bit more complex.


ThePostGame is choosing to use an apostrophe, assuming World Peace's camp will fix his grammar.

World Peace's contract is reportedly a one-year deal for $1.43 million. It makes him the highest paid import player in CBA (not collective bargaining agreement).

It has been a long road for the man once known for "Malice at the Palace." Now, his future name will imply a tender relationship with a furry animal.

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Cheerleading is supposed to provide positive reinforcement to athletic teams, not to poke fun at groups outside of sports. At least, not usually.

The cheerleader program at Redlands East Valley High School in Redlands, Calif., is under indefinite suspension after a picture on social media went viral. The picture includes team members wearing baggy clothes, throwing up gang signs, displaying fake weapons and pretending to be pregnant.

The mockery was posted on a cheerleader's Instagram page and made its way to a community group's Facebook page Tuesday -- the same day as Redlands East Valley's freshmen orientation. The posted photo reportedly had 200 comments within an hour.

School Principal John Maloney said at a community meeting Wednesday the team asked for and was granted permission by advisers "to dress up in gang attire." The photo was taken during "Spirit Day," a team-building exercise. When the principal heard of the negative response from the photo, he immediately asked the team to take down the photo. Cooperation was swift from the cheerleaders, and Maloney said the suspension is temporary.

But Maloney, the Redlands Unified School District and other administrators must determine how to address a series of written rules being broken. The photo appears to show a girl holding a fake gun and a girl with a knife in her sock. Both objects make the possessor subject to expulsion if brought on school grounds.

According to Redlands Daily Facts, the community meeting featured discussion on preaching tolerance within the school district and improving such awareness among students. Elyzaveth Green, a Redlands Police and Community Service Officer present at the meeting, believes the high school has a long way to go.

“From what I have been told, this was not an isolated incident,” the officer said.

In a statement from district superintendent Lori Rhodes, she referred to the image as "offensive" and said such portrayal "will not be tolerated."

Among Redlands East Valley's famous alumni are U.S. soccer star Landon Donovan, Eagles running back Chris Polk and Rockies pitcher Tyler Chatwood.

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It looks like someone's still a little bitter over LeBron James' decision to leave the Miami Heat and sign with his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers.

Miami resident and popular ESPN personality Dan Le Batard made headlines last week when he tried to buy a full-page ad in the Cleveland Plain Dealer in an attempt to troll James and Cavaliers fans. It might have looked something like this:


The Plain Dealer rejected Le Batard's request, and so the host of "Highly Questionable" took matters into his own hands.

A billboard recently popped up a quarter mile east of Highway 8 in Akron with a message strikingly similar to the one in the proposed newspaper ad:


The billboard's text is in Comic Sans, a font that many Cavaliers fans would be OK with never reading again.

Underneath the photo of the championship rings is a line that reads: "This ad is paid for by Gonzalo 'Papi' Le Batard and Stugotz." Gonzalo Le Batard is Dan's father and his co-host on "Highly Questionable." Stugotz is the on-air nickname of Le Batard's radio co-host, Jon Weiner.

Greg Cote, a Miami Herald columnist and Le Batard's sometimes co-host, mentioned the billboard in a blog post. He also said Le Batard may have a few other tricks up his sleeve before James' Aug. 8 homecoming event.

Here's what Le Batard texted Cote about the billboard:

"It's just fun anarchy. All meant in fun -- which, of course, will turn into Cleveland people getting filled with rage, poison and irrational hostility and want to use those billboards as a guillotine. Sports are so great, the more irrational the better. This is a publicity stunt disguised as a movement. Please don't tell anyone there is no actual movement."

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A model who tried to woo Rory McIlroy at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational may not have had much luck with that pursuit, but she did manage to make an impression on golf observers.

Ashley Bongiovanni was caught on television last week unabashedly trying to charm McIlroy:


McIlroy, of course, recently went through a high profile breakup with his longtime girlfriend, tennis star Caroline Wozniacki.

She has not yet explicitly admitted she was trying to seduce McIlroy. But Bongiovanni hasn't exactly denied her interest in the world's best golfer.


In an interview with No Laying Up, Bongiovanni played coy when asked if she knew she was on TV:

"I was just standing there and ... (laughter). ... the wind blew, and I have a lot of hair!" she said. "I pushed it out of my face, and I had my sunglasses on top of my head, and I just said, I’m just gonna hold my hair, then he smiled at me, and I dropped my hair."

Whether she's actually interested in McIlroy, and there's been no shortage of speculation about McIlroy's actual love interest, the extra attention can't be bad for Bongiovanni's profile. She says she's gained hundreds of new Twitter followers and is embracing her 15 minutes of fame.



In case you were curious, here's a look at some of Bongiovanni's recent posts on Instagram:

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