Category Archives: Entertainment & Sports Gate

Cristiano Ronaldo Scores Last-Minute Equaliser in Real Madrid Training Match

With members of the press invited to watch Real Madrid train at Melbourne City’s La Trobe University training ground, new manager Rafa Benitez organised his squad into an 11-a-side training match in preparation for their pre-season game against Roma on Saturday.

With one side featuring the likes of Sergio Ramos, Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale, and the other including Pepe, Isco and Karim Benzema, according to Marca, it promised to be an interesting matchup.

Benzema gave his side the lead with a header from a Dani Carvajal cross, before Raphael Varane handled a Bale header in the penalty area in the dying seconds. Never one to shy away, whatever the stage, Ronaldo stepped up to bury the resulting penalty and claim a draw for his side.

[YouTube: cranky sport, h/t Marca]

Jordy Clasie to Southampton: Latest Transfer Details, Reaction and More

Jordy Clasie has completed his transfer from Feyenoord to Southampton, with the Dutchman signing a five-year deal at the Premier League club for a fee of around £8 million, per BBC Sport.

News that the deal had been finalised came via the official Southampton website on July 15, with Clasie expected to be tasked with filling the void left by Morgan Schneiderlin, who has joined Manchester United.

Here’s a look at how the Dutchman shapes up statistically compared to the Frenchman, courtesy of WhoScored.com:

Clasie heads to the South Coast with a glittering reputation. The Netherlands international is a stylish midfield man and a player who has been tipped for great things with both his club and the national side.

Now he’ll get a wonderful chance to thrive in one of the most competitive leagues in European football.

Dutch football expert Peter McVitie believes the 24-year-old will be a brilliant addition for Southampton:

Here’s a glimpse at what supporters can expect from their new midfield man at St Mary’s in the 2015-16 season:

Replacing the multi-faceted influence of Schneiderlin will be a massive ask. The Frenchman has been a lynchpin at the heart of this Southampton team in recent years, growing into one of the best midfielders in the Premier League. But there is undeniable potential for Clasie to come in and make a major impact.

The Oranje star may be of very sleight somatotype, which will be a concern for some given the physical reputation of English football.

Clasie’s technical qualities and cerebral instincts will ensure he blossoms in English football, though, meaning Saints will not feel the loss of Schneiderlin quite as severely as many fear. 

ESPY 2015 Winners: Awards Results, Recap, Top Moments and Twitter Reaction

The United States women’s soccer team captured the nation’s heart as it pushed over constant obstacles to take the 2015 World Cup. On Wednesday, fans were given the opportunity to honor the USWNT by giving them the 2015 ESPY for Best Team.

The award, which was accepted by all 23 members of the gold-medal team, capped off a stirring show that transitioned seamlessly between lighthearted and tear-jerking. Hosted by Community star Joel McHale, the event began with a monologue that crossed over every possible line for the sake of comedy. McHale skewered Justin Bieber, Floyd Mayweather, Bill Cosby and the Seattle Seahawks’ infamous Super Bowl decision, among other topics, before giving way to the awards.

The big individual honors were captured by Peyton Manning, Mo’ne Davis, Stephen Curry, LeBron James and Leo Messi.

Curry took home perhaps the most coveted award of the night for Best Male Athlete. His transcendent shooting has helped revolutionize basketball, and he was the leader of a Golden State Warriors team that went down among the best in history from a statistical perspective.

James, whose Cleveland Cavaliers lost to Curry’s Warriors in the NBA Finals, took home Best Championship Performance for almost single-handedly bringing Cleveland a title. He averaged 35.8 points, 13.3 rebounds and 8.8 assists over the six-game series. All of it coming in a losing performance, however, made James a little surprised he won.

Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com was one of many to point out the weird voting results:

Manning was awarded Best Record-Breaking Performance after eclipsing Brett Favre’s all-time touchdown passing record. Manning’s 530 touchdown passes are now 22 better than Favre, who was also in the audience.

Davis, who rose to stardom last summer in the Little League World Series, beat out Giants receiver Odell Beckham Jr., Ohio State quarterback Cardale Jones and golfer Jordan Spieth for Best Breakthrough Athlete.

Jones took the loss well on Twitter:

Some of the awards, which created some of the most touching moments, were not determined by fan vote. The Pat Tillman Award, given to an athlete who best exemplifies the spirit of the former NFL safety, was given to Danielle Green. The former Notre Dame women’s basketball player lost her left arm while serving in the Army during the Iraq War.

“If my story leaves you with one thing tonight, I hope it leaves you with a challenge,” Green said, per Mike Vulpo of E! News. “Ask yourself: What’s my purpose? What’s my passion? What do I want my legacy to be? How can I live as a full human being?”

In a similar vein, Leah Still, the daughter of Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Devon Still, was given the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance. Still’s recovery from Stage 4 neuroblastoma was one of the most touching stories of the 2014 NFL season, with the league and Bengals coming together to aid in her recovery. Leah was unfortunately unable to attend the Los Angeles ceremony, so Devon accepted on her behalf.

The lengthy, emotional speech captured the past 13 months of Still’s life. Speaking on times he nearly succumbed to alcohol abuse and profusely thanking his family for staying strong, Devon Still left the most touching thank-you to his daughter.

“I just want to thank you,” Still said, per Cincinnati.com. “From the moment you was born you molded me into the man I am today. And you know I always used to dream about how I was going to be able to show you so much about life. But in the five years I’ve been with you you’ve taught me more about life than I could ever do. I love you and I’m just proud of the way you’ve been handling yourself this past year.”

Leah also taped a special thank-you message from her home:

The award that drew the most public attention coming into the night was the Arthur Ashe Courage Award, which went to Caitlyn Jenner. Jenner, who won the 1976 Olympic decathlon, came out as a transgender woman earlier this year. She is the third consecutive LGBT winner of the Arthur Ashe Award, joining former Missouri defensive end Michael Sam and broadcaster Robin Roberts.

Presented the award by U.S. soccer captain Abby Wambach, Jenner opened up on her transition and what she hopes to accomplish going forward. She cited the dismal statistics regarding transgender individuals—specifically those bullied, forced into suicidal thoughts or even outright murdered—and said she hoped her celebrity status helped foster greater acceptance.

“Trans people deserve something vital,” Jenner said, per Alex Stedman of Variety. “They deserve your respect. And from that respect, comes a more compassionate community, a more empathetic society, and a better world for all of us.”

Division III women’s basketball player Lauren Hill, who died this year after a battle with brain cancer, and former Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter were also honored with special segments. Hill’s parents accepted an ESPY on her behalf, while Jeter was given an award for his lifetime achievement.

Darren Rovell of ESPN pointed out the special bond between Hill and Still:

Among awards given out on the pre-show were Ronda Rousey for Best Fighter, Victor Espinoza for Best Jockey, Aaron Rodgers for Best NFL Player and Curry for Best NBA Player.

Espinoza was the jockey for Triple Crown winner American Pharoah and has won the Best Jockey Award three times, including each of the last two years. Rousey added to her 2014 Best Female Athlete award by going back-to-back and also created some headlines with a pointed barb toward fellow nominee Floyd Mayweather.

Mayweather, of course, has a checkered past that includes multiple domestic violence arrests.

Rodgers and Curry are the reigning Most Valuable Players of their respective sports, though both won under different circumstances. Rodgers has long been considered the most talented quarterback in football; his MVP contention is never in question as long as he’s healthy. Curry had made only one All-Star appearance before his magical 2014-15 campaign.

As a night designed to celebrate the best in the sports world, the ESPYs certainly fit their bill yet again. You may disagree with some of the award choices or feel the segments were missing the high of last year’s “Side Pieces,” but it was nonetheless a fun diversion during the doldrums of the sports calendar.

 

Follow Tyler Conway (@tylerconway22) on Twitter.

The Best Prime Day Deals That Didn’t Sell Out Instantly

We’re nearing the end of the 24 hours of madness that was the first Amazon Prime Day. The event’s best deals were of the lightning variety and sold out instantly (which doesn’t mean they weren’t great deals), but there are still some great promotions to take advantage of, including free money.http://deals.kinja.com/the-best-prime… http://deals.kinja.com/amazon-prime-w…

Read more…

Caitlyn Jenner’s Arthur Ashe Award Acceptance Speech and Photos from 2015 ESPYs

Bruce Jenner had plenty of experience standing onstage as onlookers cheered his accomplishments. A 1976 gold medal made him the most famous athlete in the country, a symbol of male masculinity and one of the most celebrated Olympians in history.

On Wednesday, Caitlyn Jenner finally got her moment in the sun.

Jenner, who revealed she was transgender this year, was the 2015 recipient of the Arthur Ashe Courage ESPY Award, which is given to a figure whose actions transcend sports. The presentation, which took up nearly 30 minutes of Wednesday’s broadcast, covered Jenner’s rise to international fame, her struggles behind closed doors and what she hopes to accomplish in the transgender community.

“I’m clear on my responsibility going forward…To promote this very simple idea: accepting people for who they are,” Jenner said, per Katie Krause of Entertainment Tonight.

United States women’s soccer captain Abby Wambach, another member of the LGBT community, presented Jenner with the award. Wambach cited the disparaging statistics regarding transgender individuals, including exceptionally high rates of suicide attempts, and pointed toward Jenner as someone who can help change the conversation.

“Trans people deserve something vital,” Jenner said, per Alex Stedman of Variety. “They deserve your respect. And from that respect, comes a more compassionate community, a more empathetic society, and a better world for all of us.”

The 65-year-old, who is best known to modern audiences for her work on Keeping Up with the Kardashians, came out as transgender earlier this year in an interview with Diane Sawyer. She later revealed her name and full transition in a Vanity Fair spread. Calling the transition the hardest thing she’s ever had to do, Jenner said she could no longer go through life not being who she was.

“Relationships for me were always tough,” Jenner said in a video clip, per Stedman. “I always felt like I was hiding myself from everybody. The only way I could get through life was by distraction. I did not want to deal with myself. … I wasted a lot of my life and nobody really knew who I am. And that’s sad.”

Jenner’s selection for the Arthur Ashe Award has drawn some criticism from within the sports world. Broadcaster Bob Costas called it a “crass exploitation play” that was meant to drive ratings. Entertainment Tonight‘s Kevin Frazier, who got his start as an ESPN anchor, was one of many to say Division III basketball player Lauren Hill, who died of brain cancer this year, was more deserving.

“Make no mistake, what Caitlyn did was courageous,” ET‘s Kevin Frazier said. “But Lauren’s journey was not about glamour or publicity. It was just a girl who never gave up her dream of playing college basketball while she was dying of cancer, and along the way she raised millions of dollars for pediatric cancer. That is why I feel that she is deserving of the award.”

Despite the controversy, ESPN not only stuck by its choice but also publicly defended it. Executive producer Maura Mandt, who has been with the ESPYs nearly since their inception, recently spoke with Sports Illustrated‘s Richard Deitsch to expound upon the decision-making process:

I think Caitlyn’s decision to publicly come out as a transgender woman and live as Caitlyn Jenner displayed enormous courage and self-acceptance. Bruce Jenner could have easily gone off into the sunset as this American hero and never have dealt with this publicly. Doing so took enormous courage. He was one of the greatest athletes of our time. That is what the Arthur Ashe Courage Award is about, somebody from the athletic community who has done something that transcends sport.

Jenner was also defiant in her speech, time and again saying her transition was not just about her—that it was about making a difference in the lives of those without a public platform.

“If you want to call me names, make jokes, doubt my intentions, go ahead—I can take it,” Jenner said. “But for the thousands of kids out there, they shouldn’t have to.”

Regardless of your opinion on the choice, the Arthur Ashe Award has increasingly become a symbol of acceptance within the sports world. Jenner is the third straight LGBT winner of the award, joining former Missouri defensive end Michael Sam and broadcaster Robin Roberts, who won in 2014 and 2013, respectively.

Given what Ashe achieved himself in de-scandalizing AIDS and HIV during a period of widespread fear, it’s only fitting his name carries on breaking down more cultural barriers in the sports world. 

 

Follow Tyler Conway (@tylerconway22) on Twitter.

Ronda Rousey zings Floyd Mayweather after taking Best Fighter ESPY – ESPN


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Ronda Rousey zings Floyd Mayweather after taking Best Fighter ESPY
ESPN
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The Best Prime Day Deals That Didn’t Sell Out Instantly

We’re nearing the end of the 24 hours of madness that was the first Amazon Prime Day. The event’s best deals were of the lightning variety and sold out instantly (which doesn’t mean they weren’t great deals), but there are still some great promotions to take advantage of, including free money.http://deals.kinja.com/the-best-prime… http://deals.kinja.com/amazon-prime-w…

Read more…

Jacksonville Jaguars: 5 Most Crucial Training-Camp Position Battles to Watch

It’s no secret that training camp is one of the final battlegrounds of the offseason in the NFL, and the Jacksonville Jaguars are no different. Multiple battles at various positions could really shape the starting lineup and the final 53-man roster.

Various players are entering this offseason’s training camp with hopes to break into the starting roster or to solidify their spot. These are the battles that will mold the starting 22 as well as change the Jaguars’ style, albeit in a small way.

For others, it’s one of the last times they’ll get to prove their worth, especially for some of the undrafted free agents. They don’t get the benefit of having experience or history with the Jaguars, and so training camp is one of the biggest moments of their first offseason.

Training camp will likely have the positive atmosphere that we’ve seen in OTAs and minicamp, but that’s not telling of the intense battles that will happen on the field. It may be fun on the outside looking in, but it will be a series of tough matchups for the players.

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