Kevin Durant Buys Ownership In MLS Team ... Philadelphia Union!!!

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Add "team owner" to Kevin Durant's massive resume ... 'cause the NBA champ just bought a stake in the Philadelphia Union of the MLS!!

The Union announced the partnership on Monday ... saying KD bought 5% of the team ... with the option to take on another 5% down the road.

Durant's official title will be "investor and community partner" ... and the team will work with his Thirty Five Ventures on marketing and community outreach.

"I’m excited to partner with the Philadelphia Union for years to come," KD said in a statement. "My team and I connected instantly with the Union coaching staff and leadership, as well as the team’s story."

Durant says the team will work with his Kevin Durant Charity Foundation to make an impact in the communities surrounding Philadelphia as well.

Principal owner of the Union Jay Sugarman spoke about the new partnership, saying "The partnership between Kevin and the Philadelphia Union is based on a set of shared values and philosophies."

"We want to be known as an innovator in our league and a team that is never satisfied with the status quo. Kevin brings us unique perspectives as a person, as a champion, and as a sports icon."

"Combined with his competitive drive and forward-thinking mentality, we believe Kevin adds a key piece in reaching our ambitions for the club."

KD joins fellow NBA superstar LeBron James into the soccer world -- 'Bron bought a stake in Liverpool F.C. in 2011.

Charles Barkley Don't Cancel NBA Season!!! Would Be 'Catastrophic Mistake'

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Charles Barkley says it would be "stupid" to cancel the remainder of the NBA season ... saying players wouldn't just miss out on cash, but they'd also lose their platform.

"I think it will be stupid to not play for 2 reasons," Barkley said on ESPN's "Get Up!"

"Number 1, if they don't play, they're gonna be 'Out of Sight, Out of Mind' for the rest of the year."

Barkley says LeBron James is one of the most famous athletes on the planet, but without the NBA season, "he won't be visible anywhere. So, it's out of sight out of mind."

Number 2 ... Barkley says players could be using their fat NBA paychecks to continue to help the cause.

"They're gonna lose billions of dollars that the players could use to go into their own communities and do some great stuff. So, it's not good on any part."

As we previously reported, Stephen Jackson came out strong against continuing the season -- saying it will take away the media focus from the Black Lives Matter movement.

Kyrie Irving and Dwight Howard recently came out with similar statements to Jackson. And, Monday morning, Barkley addressed those players as well.

"I have no idea what Kyrie and Dwight are talking about. But it'll be a catastrophic mistake not to play."

Stephen Jackson Urging NBA To Cancel Season ... 'Now Ain't The Time'

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BIGGER THAN BASKETBALL

Stephen Jackson is imploring NBA players to NOT return to action this season ... saying a basketball comeback would hurt the Black Lives Matter movement and the fight for social justice.

"Now ain't the time to be playing basketball, y'all," the former NBA star said. "Now ain't the time."

Jackson was friends with George Floyd and has become a very influential voice in the media since Floyd was killed.

"Playing basketball is going to do one thing: take all the attention off the task at hand right now and what we fighting for."

Jackson says the NBA season -- which is currently set to tip off next month in a "bubble environment" in Orlando -- would dominate the headlines ... and push away all the progress national protests have made in the wake of George Floyd's death last month.

"Nobody's going to be talking about getting justice for all these senseless murders by the police," he said. "And, nobody's going to be focusing on the task at hand, bro."

Several players are already in Jackson's corner ... Nets star Kyrie Irving and Lakers stud Dwight Howard have both said this past week they don't want to come back.

In fact, Howard said straight-up, "No Basketball 'til we get things resolved."

Of course, others want to see the season go forward ... the league's biggest star -- and Howard's teammate -- LeBron James, has said consistently he's ready for a comeback ASAP.

And, Clippers guard Patrick Beverly backed him in a tweet Sunday, writing, "Hoopers say what y’all want. If @KingJames said he hooping. We all hooping. Not Personal only BUSINESS"

But, Jackson doubled down in another video message to players Sunday ... saying, "Our moment is now."

NOW OR NEVER

"We have to stand now. We have to take advantage of this moment, man. This is for our kids and our kids' kids. I can't believe we don't get that."

LiAngelo Ball Massive Back Tat ... Took 20 Hours!!!

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LiAngelo Ball is catching up with Wiz Khalifa in the race to ink his whole body ... with the hooper revealing a MASSIVE new back tat on Friday.

Remember, not so long ago ... LaVar Ball was LIVID when he found out the oldest Ball bro was tatted in a hilarious scene on their "Ball In The Family" reality show.

21-year-old Gelo's only gotten closer to the needle ever since by adding 2 arm sleeves to his body art ... and now, an insanely huge back piece to complete his upper body.

Ball hit up celeb artist Herchell Carrasco -- who's done work for people from 6ix9ine to Kyle Kuzma -- for the job ... and he says it took a whopping 20 HOURS to complete.

The piece shows a grim reaper holding a royal flush with the message, "Bet On Myself, Beat The Odds."

Worth noting -- Carrasco, AKA RockRollG, is the same artist that covered Lonzo's BBB logo tat earlier last year ... as well as LaMelo's big chest piece.

That's a LOT of ink for one family!

NBA's Lonnie Walker I Was Raped, Abused As A Child ... Reason Behind Signature Hairstyle

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San Antonio Spurs star Lonnie Walker IV is sharing the serious reason behind cutting his signature hair ... saying he was using it as a "cloaking device" after he was raped and abused as a child ... and was finally ready to move on.

Walker -- the 18th overall pick to the Spurs in 2018 -- has been growing his hair out since the 5th grade ... and it eventually turned into "the pineapple," one of the most notable cuts in the NBA.

The 21-year-old decided it was time to part ways with his hair earlier this week ... and it's got a much deeper meaning than just wanting a new look.

"The real truth as to why i started doing this early 5th grade, it was a cloaking device for me," Walker said on IG.

"During the summer of my 5th grade year I was around more family ... I was sexually harassed, raped, abused, I even got accustomed to it because being at that age you don’t know what is what."

"I had a mindset that my hair was something that I can control. My hair was what I can make and create and be mine."

Walker says he used his time during the coronavirus to accept his past and forgive everyone responsible for his struggles ... calling it "dead weight."

"Me cutting my hair was more than a cut," Walker continued. "My hair was a mask of me hiding the insecurity’s that I felt the world wasn’t ready for. But now better then ever. Out with old. In with the new. I have shed my skin mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually."

Walker streamed the monumental moment ... and the hooper was overcome with emotions when the haircut was complete.

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"Life will always be hard. Gotta play with the cards your dealt with and try and make a winning hand. And if you lose. It’s never a lost. It’s a lesson."

Dave Chappelle Rips Laura Ingraham Over LeBron James Criticism

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Dave Chappelle unloaded on Laura Ingraham -- calling her a "white bitch" for telling LeBron James to "shut up and dribble."

The comedian brought up Ingraham on his new Netflix special, "8:46"-- which took its name after the time George Floyd suffered in police custody before his death.

Roughly 15:30 into the set, Chappelle brings up his friend LeBron James and the way the Fox News host told him to "shut up and dribble" after he spoke out against Trump in 2018.

"LeBron James once said something about racism and Laura Ingraham, which I will say publicly anywhere anytime is a c*** told one of Ohio's greatest residents ever to 'Shut up and dribble.'"

Chappelle continued, "This bitch told my friend to shut up and dribble."

"My friend is the best at something. And this bitch is not the best at anything. Just a regular-ass white bitch with a platform. And I use the word 'bitch' all the time because [it's a black thing]."

Ingraham recently addressed criticism she's been getting for the different way she criticized Drew Brees when he spoke out against.  NFL kneelers.

"Every American has the God-given right to speak his mind on any issue," Ingraham said.

"I think in order to heal and shed light on gross injustices, our country needs more dialogue, not less. And we need more respect, less retribution."

Laura Responds to Lebron
Fox News

"We are all human beings on this earth for a very short period of time when you think about it, This is a moment when we should be listening and learning. All of us."

Carmelo Anthony 'Still Up In The Air' on Finishing NBA Season in Orlando

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The NBA may be without one of its biggest names when the season resumes in July -- Portland Trail Blazers star Carmelo Anthony says he's on the fence.

Melo's Blazers are 3.5 games out of a playoff spot -- and would need a strong run to make the playoffs.

But, Anthony says he has yet to commit to join the team at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida ... simply because he needs more info about the event before he can make up his mind.

"I'm still up in the air a little bit because I really don't, we don't have all the details," Melo told Ernie Johnson his Twitter show, "#NBATogether."

"We don't know a lot of information, so until we have that, it's hard to just commit to that 100%."

The NBA is planning on bringing the top 22 teams to Orlando to live and play in a bubble-style environment with rigorous testing due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

While some players -- like LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo -- are stoked about getting back to work, there are reports of a rift between other stars, who aren't fully on board.

This doesn't mean Melo's not going to play -- he's smartly waiting for more info before making his decision.

Vanessa Bryant Reveals Tattoo Tributes Honoring Gianna and Kobe

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Vanessa Bryant got tattoos to honor Kobe and Gianna back in February -- and she's now sharing video of the ink sessions.

Vanessa hit up tattoo artist Nikko Hurtado for a house call to put two different pieces on her body.

First, a tribute to Gianna on her wrist.

"Shoutout to @nikkohurtado for coming over and helping me get my Gigi’s sweet message transferred on me. #throwbacktoFebruary," Vanessa said.

Unclear exactly what the message says.

Next, a tribute to Kobe on her neck.

"I wanted my boo boo's @kobebryant sweet message transferred on me."

"@nikkohurtado came through for me. Thank you! #inked #messagetransfer #BooBoo #throwback #tattooinmyhallway #QueenMamba #MambaMentality."

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Vanessa did not reveal specific details about the two tattoos -- meaning, we don't know what the messages say -- but obviously, they are deeply meaningful to her.

Kobe and Gianna -- along with 7 others -- died in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, CA on January 26.

Several people close to Kobe -- including LeBron James and Anthony Davis -- also got tattoos to pay tribute to the NBA legend.

After Vanessa posted the tattoo footage, a bunch of her famous friends weighed in with positive messages including Khloe Kardashian.

"So special beautiful," Khloe wrote.

Nikko, the tattoo artist, also commented ... saying, "Anytime for you guys! All love! I hope you guys are okay. Let’s do a sleeve now!"

Khloe Kardashian Gettin' Close with Tristan Thompson ... For Bday Party Fun!!!

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CELEBRATE TOGETHER

Khloe Kardashian and Tristan Thompson are attached at the hip again, but only for a moment. At least for now.

We've known the exes have been spending time together while co-parenting True over the past several weeks -- but at a friend's birthday party they looked very cozy again ... with no kid in sight.

In the vid, posted by Tristan's old teammate, Jordan Clarkson ... Khloe and Tristan are standing right next to each other while singing and holding up their phones. Notably, it looks like his arm is around her.

It's not as earth-shattering as those pregnancy rumors -- which were false -- but for these 2, any news is big news. Our sources say the party was going down at Tristan's home in L.A., but despite appearances, they're not back on as a couple.

We're told Tristan sees Khloe and their daughter every day ... and the pandemic has simply given them a chance to hang out more and work on their friendship.

Our sources say they still live separately, though, and insist there's no change to their relationship status ... still just friends and co-parents.

They are together on one thing, though -- we broke the story, Khloe and Tristan threatened to sue a woman for lying and defamation after she made claims he was the father of her child. Their lawyers say that's been proven false, and Tristan did eventually sue her.

BIRTHDAY BASH

They also celebrated True's 2nd birthday together back in April ... and seem to be very happy with their current situation.

Michael Jordan Catches Big Ass Blue Marlin In $3 Million Fishing Tournament

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Air Jordan has just conquered another element -- WATER -- 'cause Michael Jordan's Catch 23 boat just caught a 442.3-pound blue marlin in a fishing tourney!!

Jordan is currently dukin' it out in the 62nd Annual Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament in Morehead City, North Carolina this week ... a big-time competition with $3.4 MILLION in prize money.

His Airness has participated in huge fishing comps in the past ... including the White Marlin Open in 2019.

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MJ was all smiles when his crew brought in the huge blue marlin on Tuesday ... which is good enough to put them in 5th place for the heaviest marlin (the first place boat reeled in a 494.2-lb fish!!!)

Remember, MJ's Catch 23 ride is a beaut -- it's even got the signature elephant print from his Jordan 3's on the back.

Jordan did a "post-game interview" after getting off the boat ... saying he hopes to get back out on the water and bring back a bigger fish.

WHAT A CATCH!
Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament

The crowd went wild when MJ pulled up to the dock ... and the legend even agreed to sign a few autographs after celebrating the huge catch.

The tourney goes through the 13 ... so MJ still has some time to come through in the clutch.

NBA's Damian Lillard Says 'F*** You' To Racists In Song Honoring George Floyd

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SPITTIN' TRUTH
Dame Dolla

"As a brother with a good heart, I say 'f*** you' if you racist or white staying quiet, you disabling the changes."

NBA superstar Damian Lillard -- AKA Dame DOLLA -- is sending a strong message about police brutality and the recent peaceful protests across the country ... dropping a spoken word track titled "Blacklist," in honor of George Floyd.

Here are some notable lyrics ...

"We in a pandemic, thought getting out I’d be more joyed, then I watched a cop knee to the neck kill George Floyd"

"As a rich black man living in this country, it’s hard being comfy when the hate your people get is coming from the ones amongst me"

"Used to call us 'monkeys' and 'slaves' and we overcame. Still our work is just beginning, protests look like parades."

"The kind of sh*t we experience, how we felt when the country turned on Kaepernick after he knelted."

Lillard also calls out President Donald Trump for saying, "when the looting starts, the shooting starts" ... calling POTUS a "clown" and a "trust fund baby."

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Lillard has personally taken the streets of Portland to protest the recent deaths of Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery ... vowing to bring change to the country.

The whole 3-minute track is worth a listen ... and you can check it out here.

Kendall Jenner Malibu'd Up with Devin Booker Nobu Date Before NBA Bubble

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NOBU WITH BOO
MEGA

Kendall Jenner and Devin Booker are still going strong -- hitting up the most expensive sushi spot in town Monday ... just weeks before Devin has to get back to work!

The two rolled through Nobu in Malibu and left in the same SUV -- roughly one month after they were spotted on a road trip together in Arizona.

APRIL 2020
POTTY BREAK
TMZSports.com

They both looked really good. In fact, Kendall walked out of the restaurant like she was strutting down a fashion runway.

But, here's the twist ... with the NBA announcing its plan to resume the 2019-20 season at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida starting on July 31, it seems they'll have a forced separation.

Devin's Phoenix Suns will be included in the NBA's 22-team plan -- in which players and staff will essentially live in a bubble environment as they play out the rest of the season and playoffs.

Teams are expected to arrive in mid-July.

Only essential people will be allowed in the bubble -- players, staff, coaches and family members. Everyone will be required to undergo thorough COVID-19 testing.

Since Kendall isn't family, it's likely she won't be allowed inside ... and if the Suns catch fire, they could be in the bubble until mid-October!

The good news for Kendall ... there's a very low chance they'll even make the playoff portion of the bubble much less the Finals.

As we previously reported, Kendall and Devin began hanging out at the beginning of the quarantine ... and Kendall has since shot down the notion they're just friends.

Steve Kerr '97 Finals Bulls Shorts For Sale ... Nailed Title Winning Shot

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Steve Kerr's Chicago Bulls shorts -- rocked by the sharpshooter when he knocked down one of the most historic shots in NBA history -- just hit the auction block.

The white Champion brand shorts are from Game 6 of the 1997 NBA Finals ... where Michael Jordan's Bulls squad took on Karl Malone, John Stockton and the Utah Jazz.

The Bulls led the series, 3-2 ... heading in to Game 6 at the United Center on June 13, 1997. It was a super tight game that went down to the wire.

With 5 seconds left in the game -- and the Bulls trailing by 1 point -- the Jazz defense expected Jordan to attempt the game-winning shot.

However, Jordan kicked it out to a wide-open Kerr -- who nailed a 17-foot dagger of a jump shot -- securing the Bulls 5th NBA Championship.

FYI -- Kerr scored 9 points. Jordan dropped 39.

The shorts -- photomatched to ensure authenticity -- are on the auction block at Lelands Auctions.

Kerr -- who autographed the shorts -- has called the shot the most memorable moment of his 15 season NBA playing career.

The auction is currently underway ... and there have been multiple bids around $1,500.

But, expect the price to skyrocket before bidding closes late next week.

NBA's Malik Monk Reinstated From Drug Suspension ... During League's Hiatus

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Charlotte Hornets player Malik Monk -- who was suspended for violating the league's anti-drug policy -- was reinstated during the league's COVID-19 hiatus, the team announced on Monday.

22-year-old Monk was suspended without pay on Feb. 26 ... and the reason behind the punishment was never made public. All we know is he violated the terms of the NBA/NBPA Anti-Drug Program.

Hornets GM Mitch Kupchak revealed Monk's suspension has been over for "a while" during his end of the year conference call with the media ... saying the guard has been back with the team and training at the practice facility.

"That’s been a while now,” Kupchak said on Monday. "He went through his program, and my understanding was he was reinstated as soon as possible."

"He has been in our facility and participated in all team activities."

Monk -- a star at Kentucky -- put a string of solid performances together prior to his suspension ... but with the Hornets not being part of the league's 22-team plan to return to action, he won't see the court again until next season.

J.R. Smith Criminal Charges Unlikely ... Over L.A. Beatdown

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MESSED WITH THE WRONG CAR
TMZSports.com

J.R. Smith will likely NOT be hit with criminal charges for beating the hell out of an alleged vandal in an incident caught on video, multiple sources involved with the situation tell TMZ Sports.

We broke the story ... the NBA player went ballistic on a man he claimed vandalized his truck during a wild looting spree in Los Angeles on May 30.

Smith later called the incident a "random act of stupidness" and said he regretted his actions.

Law enforcement sources tell us ... the victim has not gone to police -- no report has been filed -- and, at this point, we're told it seems highly unlikely that will happen.

Our sources tell us without a victim coming forward, there's no way for prosecutors to even attempt to levy charges against the 34-year-old.

I DON'T PLAY

As we previously reported, Smith essentially described the incident as Street Justice shortly after the attack ... saying he whooped the man's ass for smashing a window on his truck.

Smith later went on "The Pat McAfee Show" and said he was disappointed with himself "even though people say I shouldn't be."

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