Wednesday, April 30, 2008

De La Hoya To Honor Original "Golden Boy"

LOS ANGELES (April 30, 2008) – The current “Golden Boy” and legendary champion Oscar de la Hoya will pay tribute to the original Los Angeles “Golden Boy” Art Aragon, who died this year at the age of 88.

“Art Aragon meant so much to boxing and the Los Angeles community,” said De La Hoya, who was called “Golden Boy” soon after winning his 1992 Olympic gold medal. “With his passing this March, I thought it was only fitting to dedicate my fight to him and acknowledge his great contribution to boxing and the community. I am glad his family will be able to be there for this special night.”

The Aragon family will be guests of De La Hoya Saturday night, sitting ringside and being acknowledged by a ceremonial announcement in the ring before the main event bout.

“My family is extremely grateful to Oscar for acknowledging my father by dedicating his “Homecoming” bout to him,” said Brad Aragon, son of the deceased fighter. “It meant a lot to him to have Oscar use ‘Golden Boy’ as his ring name as my father truly believed that, like him, Oscar has given so much to boxing and the community around him. I wish Oscar all the best and know that my father will be watching Saturday night too.”

Aragon, was born in Belen, New Mexico on November 13, 1927. He grew up in Los Angeles, fought during the 1930s and 1940s, and was given the name “Golden Boy” by screen actor William Holden after Holden starred in the 1939 movie of the same name. He was the second Golden Boy in boxing, the first being heavyweight Jack DeMave, who fought in the '20s.

Aragon, who compiled a career record of 90-20-6 (61 KO’s), wore gold trunks and robes and loved to play the villain in the ring. His only title shot came on November 14, 1951 when he lost a 15-round decision to lightweight champion Jimmy Carter, whom he had previously defeated. Aragon also fought Carmen Basilio, Don Jordan, and Billy Graham. Handsome in looks and married four times, he was romantically linked to Marilyn Monroe, Mamie Van Doren, and Jayne Mansfield among others. After his retirement in 1960, Aragon became a bail bondsman and appeared in several movies and TV shows.

“Homecoming”—On Saturday, May 3, De La Hoya will face former world champion Steve Forbes, in what will be the first-ever boxing event at The Home Depot Center’s soccer stadium. The bout will also mark De La Hoya’s return home to fight for the first time in Los Angeles since 2000 as well as his return to HBO’s World Championship Boxing for the first time since 2001. Homecoming” is presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Tournament of Contenders, AEG and The Home Depot Center and is sponsored by Cazadores, Tecate, Rockstar Energy Drink, Southwest Airlines and Affliction Clothing. The match up will be televised live by HBO’s World Championship Boxing beginning at 10pm ET / 7pm PT.

Tickets priced starting at $25.00 may be purchased by calling Ticketmaster at 213-480-3232 or by visiting Group tickets, VIP packages and Hospitality packages are available by calling 1-877-AEG-TICKETS (1-877-234-8425) or by visiting

Barack Obama's Solution To The Gas Crisis

The Obama campaign is airing an important ad about gas prices in Indiana and North Carolina.
The ad shows Barack at his best, cutting through the Washington gimmicks and talking about real solutions to gas prices and alternative energy.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Foursomes Available For Dodgers Golf Tournament

WHAT: The Dodgers Dream Foundation Charity Golf Invitational. Join Dodger players, coaches and legends for a great golf outing and dinner event while supporting the Dodgers Dream Foundation. Every foursome is paired up with a coach, broadcaster, executive or a current or former Dodger player.

To purchase a foursome, or for more information regarding the golf tournament, please call David Brennan, Manager of Community Affairs at (323) 224-1413.

WHEN: Foursomes on sale now
Golf tournament, Thursday, May 22

WHERE: Trump National Golf Club
One Ocean Trails Drive
Rancho Palos Verdes, California 90275

MISC: All proceeds benefit the Dodgers Dream Foundation, which is committed to providing educational, athletic and recreational opportunities for the youth of the Greater Los Angeles community. The Foundation places special emphasis on helping traditionally under-served youth. The 2007 event raised $140,000 for the Dodgers Dream Foundation through the generous contribution of many sponsors, guests and auction donators.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Chargers Welcome Fans to Mini Camp May 3-4

The two-time defending AFC West Champion Chargers, who in January were just one game away from Super Bowl XLII, will return to the field for the first time as Norv Turner leads the 2008 squad out for its debut at Mini Camp next Saturday and Sunday, May 3-4, at Chargers Park. The team will practice twice on Saturday (10:45-12:30 and 4-6 p.m.) and once on Sunday (11-1 p.m.) and all three practices are free and open to the public.

Mini Camp will be the fans’ first opportunity to see the newest Chargers, including the team’s 2008 draft class led by cornerback Antoine Cason and running back Jacob Hester, along with their favorite returning veterans like LaDainian Tomlinson, Philip Rivers, Antonio Gates, Shawne Merriman and Antonio Cromartie.

Mini Camp will offer a festive atmosphere at Chargers Park. Complimentary rosters will be provided. The Chargers Team Store will be open and selling some of the newest and hottest team merchandise and apparel. Fans will have a chance to sign up and win great prizes and the NFL’s hottest dance team, the 2008 Charger Girls, will be on hand to greet fans.

Bleacher seating is available and fans will be able to see the entire practice field from the bleachers, though fans are welcome to bring beach chairs. Food and drinks will also be available, however fans can also bring coolers, snacks, soft drinks and water. Alcoholic beverages, video cameras, pets and weapons of any kind are NOT PERMITTED.

Fans attending Mini Camp will enter through a gate located at the south end of Chargers Park. Parking is available in the PS Business Center and on Murphy Canyon Road, however it is recommended that fans park in the business center for the easiest access to Mini Camp.

For more information about Mini Camp, go to or call 858-874-4500.

Chargers Fans: Meet Antoine Cason

San Diego Chargers first-round draft choice Antoine Cason – Conference Call Transcript – April 26, 2008

How much did you know about the Chargers’ interest in you?
“Not much.”

What was your contact with them?
“I didn’t know too much about it. It was just a crazy time. I didn’t really know how it was going to all pan out.”

What do you know about their (Chargers) situation in terms of cornerback and what you expect to be coming in and doing?

“I really don’t know. I talked to the coach and he told me that he was just going to put me in some spots and some situations that will be pretty good, so I feel good about it.”

Are you in Long Beach?
“Yes, I’m in Long Beach.”

Almost the hometown team for you?
“Oh yeah, it really is.”

Did you come to any Chargers games growing up?
“I went to one just this past year. My cousin (Aveion Cason) plays for Detroit. It was pretty cool just to see how they play and all that kind of stuff. It’s an exciting time for me.”

Were you nervous?...Where did you expect to go?
“I didn’t really get too nervous. I stayed calm and just let everything happen. I stayed as calm as I could because there was nothing I could do or nothing I could control. It was just one of those things where I had to just let it happen.”

Was there a team or teams you thought were most interested in you?
“No, I really didn’t know. I didn’t think too much about it because they say those teams that don’t talk to you usually pick you, and this is one of those cases that it happened. I’m just real fortunate to have an opportunity to play.”

What do you think you do best as a player?
“Ball skills. I always play hard. I like to make plays and just overall playing the position.”

Any players on the Chargers’ defense you’re excited about getting to know?
“Definitely. I’m ready to get to know everybody. I’m a team guy and teammates are always important. That’s a big part of the game. I’m just ready to go in there and contribute.”

How many visits did you actually make?
“I made five visits.”

Who were they?
“I went to the Baltimore Ravens, New England Patriots, St. Louis Rams, Dallas Cowboys, and Atlanta Falcons.”

What does it mean to you to be regarded as a high character guy?
“That means a lot to me. That means I’ve done the right things throughout my career at Arizona and growing up. It’s a testament to my family as well. Growing up with them has been real good and real tough at times. They taught me a lot, and taught me to stay humble. So that also helped. I just take that to the field. I didn’t take that (literally) to the field, actually, I think I have a mean attitude, but just being a good character guy in the community and things like that always help you become a better person. The people around look up to us as athletes. Just being that (kind of) guy there and doing those kinds of things always helps.”

Did you play other sports in high school?
“Yes, I ran track.”

What were your events?
“4x100 (relay) and the 400.”

Tough one?
“Yes, it was a touch race. I don’t think I ever want to run that again.”

How’d you end up at Arizona?
“I didn’t get highly recruited out of high school. I only had four offers and three were in the Pac-10. Arizona was the best situation for me just because of the DB coaches and everything that they’ve done and the DBs that they’ve put out. It just felt right.”

How different is it going to be going against NFL wide receivers?
“I don’t know how it’s going to be. I’m just going to go in there and do what I can do to better myself as a player and get ready for the NFL. But I’m sure it’s going to be a challenge every week.”

What did your parents do in raising you that you think was most important?
“My parents, my grandparents, and uncles and aunts have all been involved in our lives. They just taught us humble beginnings and humble ways. Never get too big for your britches was a common thing. That’s always good to know. They didn’t let me do whatever I wanted. I always had to work for what I wanted to get and what I have. I feel like that has carried over to everything I’ve done in life.”

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Random Thoughts On Lakers/Nuggets

As the clock winds down to the tip-off of Game Two between the Lakers and the Nuggets, some random thoughts came to mind. So instead of keeping them to myself, here they are in no particular order.

1) Linas Kleiza Needs To Start For The Nuggets
I came to this conclusion after the 6-8 forward had played about 10 minutes in Game One. He was one of the most active players on the floor for Denver. He was crashing the boards, getting into passing lanes, and running the floor on the fast breaks. Look for George Karl to insert Kleiza into the starting lineup Wednesday night in place of Anthony Carter. The move would allow Kenyon Martin to stay on Kobe Bryant and help the Nuggets improve their rebounding. The pressure of starting shouldn't affect Kleiza. In addition to scoring 23 points off the bench in Game One, he started 13 times this season for the Nuggets.

2) Will The Trash Talking Continue?
I posted earlier about how much I actually enjoy trash talking in professional sports, especially basketball. From from my seats near the court, I can usually hear some of the conversations or at least do a little lip-reading. Having said that, however, I was actually a little surprised at how much jawing was going on during Game One. Kobe Bryant has never shied away from a verbal sparring session, but I couldn't believe how long he and Kenyon Martin were going back and forth before getting hit with double technicals. It will be interesting to see if that trend continues.

3) Will Anthony Carter Seek Revenge On Kobe?
I'm sure you saw the play where Carter tried to grab Kobe on a breakaway and then pushed him after the play. Carter was given a tech for the shove, but he said it was justified because Kobe hit him in the face. Evidently, that play was not the first time Kobe had gone upside Carter's head. The Nuggets guard complained after the game that Kobe had hit him in the face on more than one occasion this season. In fact, Carter says it's happened so often that he asked the team's video coordinator to put together a DVD to send to the league showing Kobe's flailing arms.

4) Allen Iverson Is The Toughest SOB In The League
I know this statement isn't really saying anything that hasn't been said before. But every time I see him play in person, I'm reminded of just how much punishment he takes on a nightly basis. Iverson on the court is like a poodle running with the bulls in Pamplona. You wonder why he's even out there when he's destined to get run over several times. But Iverson is more rottweiler than poodle. He's more Brutus than Fifi. He may take the pounding, but he always comes back for more. And oftentimes, he's the one leading the pack at the end. Pound for pound, no one is even close to his skill and pain threshold levels. And consider this stat note. Coming into this postseason, his 30 point playoff scoring average was second all time. Only Michael Jordan posted a better scoring average in the postseason.

5) The Nuggets Cannot Win The Series
I believed that before the series started, and now I know it for sure. My reasoning is simple. The Nuggets don't defend. The Nuggets can't defend. Hell, they might not even know how. They were one of the worst defensive teams in the league this season, and there's no way that will improve during the course of a 7-game series. I thought George Karl's move to put Kenyon Martin on Kobe Bryant was a good decision. But if Marcus Camby constantly has to leave his man to help his teammates, the Lakers will continue to get layups and victories.

6) Laker Fans Took Melo Rants Too Far
I know fans will be fans, but when some of the Laker Faithful started chanting "D-U-I, D-U-I" when Carmelo Anthony was shooting free throws, I believe they crossed the line. I'm not condoning drinking and driving, but calling out someone for such a transgression has nothing to do with what's going down on the court. The irony is, I wonder how many of the fans yelling "D-U-I" drove away from Staples Center after having one or two more drinks than the law allows. And one other thing, do you think Jerry Buss felt a bit ashamed when those chants rang out? I'm sure those three letters are something he would not like to be reminded of. And don't forget Laker fans, Kobe still has to play at least two games in Denver, where no one has forgotten about a certain rape trial. Case dropped or not, you can almost guarantee some fans will remind Kobe of some of his previous time spent there.

Monday, April 21, 2008

NBA Playoffs Better Than Expected

Those of us who cover the NBA on a regular basis have believed for quite some time that this season's NBA Playoffs could be the best in recent memory--especially the Western Conference showdowns. And thankfully, the play through the first weekend lived up to the hype.

Starting Saturday afternoon, the NBA's best and brightest produced the drama, excitement and unbelievable plays that make the league what it is. Whether it was LeBron James, Tim Duncan, Chris Paul, Kevin Garnett or Kobe Bryant, superstars did what superstars are supposed to do: lead their team to victory.

Here's a list of some of my personal favorites from the weekend:

1) Spurs/Suns Double Overtime Thriller
This classic was the best game I have seen all season long, period. I won't quite go as far as some are suggesting that it was the best playoff game ever, but it would definitely be in the conversation. Down the stretch, the best players made the best plays. Tim Duncan's overtime-forcing 3-pointer. Steve Nash's fallaway game-tying 3-pointer. Manu Ginobili's game-winning drive and layup. The game had everything a great game requires: drama, superstars, and unbelievable plays. The only drawback was the foul situation. As a fan of the game, you would have liked to have seen Amare Stoudemire, Shaquille O'Neal and Tony Parker in there for all of the action at end.

2) Chris Paul Taking Over
Since he first entered the league a couple of years ago, CP3 has been one of my favs. Not so much because he's one of the game's elite point guards, but mostly because he's such a good dude. He's always cordial, respectful and sincere. He's a player that all players like. But it was his game that will make him a future Hall of Famer. What he did to the Mavs in the third quarter of Game One, was one of the best single game performances I've seen in a while. He could do whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted. And there was nothing anyone could do about it-- not even future Hall of Famer Jason Kidd. As dominating a performance as it was, his immediate comments after the game tell you more about the character of this young man. He wasn't fully aware of his stats, because he was so focused on winning the game. And if winning the game meant he had to take upon the scoring burden of his team, then that's what he had to do. And it did it very well.

3) Cavs/Wizards Game Within The Game
It still baffles me why the media gets so wrapped up in players making guarantees and/or talking trash. I personally love it when players make such comments in public. For me, it just adds to the intrigue of the game. So as a member of the media, I don't try to discourage such talk. Instead, I welcome it! And so do you! Think about it. Would the mini-scuffle that started with LeBron James and Brendan Haywood have been as interesting if not for all the trash talking leading up to the game? I know some of you might be sports purists, who believe your play between the lines should speak for itself. And to be fair, I was the same way when I was playing sports growing up. But I don't play anymore. I'm a fan. And as a fan, I like to be entertained. I only hope that someone says something else before Game Two.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Kobe Gets My Vote For MVP

After long debate and consideration, I have finally come to a conclusion on all of the NBA's postseason awards. I do not have an official media vote, but here is how I believe the voting should play out.

MVP: Kobe Bryant
I went back and forth 10-15 times on this selection over the last several weeks. I asked players, coaches and media members throughout the league to give me their take on who they think should win the award. I didn't want them to make my decision for me, but I just wanted to make sure there wasn't something I was missing in either candidate.

In the end, it became clear to me that Kobe Bryant was the league's MVP. His numbers are among the league's best yet again, but what really stood out is how he still carried his team to the top seed in the Western Conference when the Lakers lost so many games to injuries. Andrew Bynum, Trevor Ariza, Lamar Odom, Vladimir Radmanovic, Sasha Vujacic, Chris Mihm, and even Pau Gasol all missed time at some point this season. But in the face of such adversity, Kobe perhaps played his best.

Kobe scored 40 or more points in a game six times this season. He grabbed double digit rebounds 15 times. And five times he dished out at least 10 assists. Just imagine if he handled the ball as much as Paul, Nash or LeBron.

Perhaps Sacramento Coach Reggie Theus summed up Kobe's MVP-caliber season the best. When asked whether this was Kobe's best season in the league, Theus responded, "It's his best season as a teammate!" Enough said!

MVP Ballot:
1) Kobe Bryant
2) Chris Paul
3) Kevin Garnett

Coach of the Year: Byron Scott
Coming off a season where the Hornets were a walking MASH unit, some people actually thought New Orleans wouldn't even make the playoffs this season. However, Byron Scott was not one of those people, nor would he allow his team to settle for just making the postseason. Instead, they battled the Lakers for the top seed in the West until the final week of the season.

Most league insiders, as well as fans, will probably give Chris Paul and his MPV-worthy season the most credit for the Hornets turnaround from 39 to 52 wins. But don't get it twisted. It was Scott who recognized just how special Paul could be and shaped a system around the future Hall of Famer. It was Scott who would not allow his team to settle for mediocrity and convinced them that they were good enough to challenge for this year's NBA championship.

Coach of the Year Ballot:
1) Byron Scott
2) Rick Adelman
3) Doc Rivers

Rookie of the Year: Kevin Durant
Barring a rash of injuries, Kevin Durant wrapped up this season's Rookie of the Year Award when Greg Oden underwent knee surgery last summer. But don't take anything away from this future perennial All-Star. Durant can flat out go. And go. And go.

On a team which only won 20 games and lacking any proven veteran stars, Durant averaged 20.3 points a game even though he was the top priority in every team's scouting report. He eclipsed the 30-point mark seven times, including a season-ending, career-high 42.

Once his body catches up to his game, we could see him battling LeBron James for not only future scoring titles, but MVP awards as well.

Rookie of the Year Ballot
1) Kevin Durant
2) Al Horford
3) Al Thornton

Most Improved: Hedo Turkoglu
When the Magic acquired Rashard Lewis from Seattle, Hedo Turkoglu's playing time and his role became serious question marks in Orlando. Instead, Turkoglu had the entire league questioning why they didn't pay more attention to him.

Turkoglu's 19.5 points were second only to Dwight Howard's 20.7 (Lewis averaged 18.2). His offensive production this season was a 6-point increase from last year and an 8-point jump above his career numbers. He was also second on the team in both rebounds and assists.

Most Improved Ballot:
1) Hedo Turkoglu
2) Rudy Gay
3) Chris Kaman

Defensive Player of the Year: Marcus Camby
This award more than any other seems to have the same candidates each and every year. The reason is simple. The best defenders are the best because they are always playing defense. It's not something they do for certain stretches of the game, it's something they do every minute they are on the court.

Marcus Camby gets my vote as the league's best defender not just because he led the NBA yet again in blocked shots, but because he alters way more shots than he actually blocks. When guards drive the lane against Camby, it's either a block or an ugly shot. Either way, they rarely score over or around him. Instead, opponents light up the rest of Camby's teammates for their points!

Defensive Player of the Year Ballot:
1) Marcus Camby
2) Bruce Bowen
3) Raja Bell

Sixth Man of the Year: Manu Ginobili
The league should really consider renaming the Sixth Man of the Year Award after Manu Ginobili. It's really not even fair. Ginobili isn't just one of the best bench players in the league, he's one of the top NBA players, period. He scores like a starter (19.5) while playing starter minutes (31.1).

It's not his fault Greg Popovich prefers to bring him into the game midway through the first quarter. But if he continues that practice, Ginobili will continue to be the runaway winner of this award.

Sixth Man of the Year Ballot:
1) Manu Ginobili
2) Leandro Barbosa

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

2008 San Diego Chargers Schedule Announced

The National Football League clearly feels the San Diego Chargers are among the League’s elite and most popular teams.

Today the NFL unveiled its schedule for the 2008 season and six of the Chargers’ 20 games are national, prime-time contests. Among the six are five home games for Chargers faithful, including games against New England, Indianapolis, Seattle (preseason), Oakland and the New York Jets.

Tickets to games at Qualcomm Stadium are sure to be a hot commodity and a limited number of season tickets are currently on sale at the Chargers Ticket Office at Gate C at Qualcomm Stadium or by calling 877-Chargers.

The Bolts open the season at home for the third time in the last four years, hosting the Carolina Panthers for NFL Kickoff Weekend. Carolina, which played in the Super Bowl following the 2003 season and the NFC Championship Game following the 2005 season, is looking to rebound from an injury-marred 7-9 campaign in 2007. The Panthers are expecting the return of their star quarterback Jake Delhomme who missed most of the ’07 season after undergoing elbow surgery. Delhomme threw eight touchdown passes and only one interception before the injury. The last time these teams met was during the Chargers’ miraculous 2004 AFC West Championship season and the Bolts shocked the defending NFC Champions, 17-6, in Charlotte. This year’s season opener will mark the Panthers’ first visit to Qualcomm Stadium since 1997.

The team’s first regular-season prime-time tilt is set for Monday, Sept. 22 as ESPN’s Monday Night Football sets up shop in San Diego for the Chargers and the New York Jets. The Jets are a dangerous offensive team featuring the likes of Chad Pennington, Thomas Jones, Jerricho Cotchery and Laveranues Coles.

The Chargers next home game is also under the lights – a much-anticipated matchup against the defending AFC Champion New England Patriots on Sunday, Oct. 12 on NBC’s Sunday Night Football. In January, the Patriots defeated the Chargers, 21-12, on a frigid afternoon in Foxbourough, Massachusetts in the 2007 AFC Championship Game. It was one of three losses the Chargers suffered at the hands of the Patriots in a little more than a year and marked the second year in a row that the Chargers’ season came to an end versus New England. The game against the Patriots, who went a perfect 16-0 in the 2007 regular season, will mark the seventh year in a row that the Chargers will have a regular-season game scheduled against one or both of the participants from the previous year’s Super Bowl.

Two original AFL franchises, the Chargers and Patriots have established quite a rivalry as that game will mark their eighth meeting (regular or postseason) since 2001. The Chargers (46 wins), Patriots (52) and Indianapolis Colts (51) are the NFL’s three winningest franchises over the last four regular seasons.

Speaking of the Colts, they too have built quite a rivalry with the Chargers. The two teams meet again in front of another NBC national TV audience on Sunday night, Nov. 23, kicking off a stretch in which the Chargers play three straight and four of their last six games at home. Fans can be sure that Indianapolis will be looking to enact revenge against the Chargers for a 28-24 loss in the AFC Divisional Playoffs that eliminated the defending Super Bowl Champs from last year’s postseason race. The game also marks the second season in a row that the Chargers and Colts will meet during the regular season in a nationally-televised game. Last year’s game, played on a cool and rainy night in San Diego, was highlighted by a three-interception performance by Antonio Cromartie and a two-touchdown night by Darren Sproles. Cromartie helped the Bolts pick off Colts quarterback Peyton Manning a career-high six times and Sproles returned a punt and a kickoff for a touchdown as the Chargers squeaked out a 23-21 win against Indy on NBC’s Sunday Night Football.

The Bolts’ three-game home stretch, their first since 2001, concludes with games against the Atlanta Falcons and an NFL Network nationally-televised home game against the Chargers’ arch-rivals, the Oakland Raiders, on Thursday night, Dec. 4. The Chargers-Raiders game will be the Bolts’ first-ever televised on the NFL Network. The Atlanta game will mark the return of Michael “The Burner” Turner to San Diego. Turner was one of the NFL’s biggest free-agent signees this offseason, inking a six-year deal with the Falcons in March. The Falcons are looking to Turner to help turn the fortunes of the franchise around after a 4-12 season in 2007. The Falcons were beset by injuries during the ’07 season, finishing the year with 14 players on their “Reserve-Injured” list, including standout defensive tackle Rod Coleman.

The Chargers will shoot for their third-straight and fourth AFC West title in the last five years when they close out the schedule with a season-ending showdown with the Denver Broncos on Sunday, Dec. 28.

The Chargers were a perfect 5-0 in December during the 2007 season and overall have won 10-straight games in the month of December. Since 2004, the Chargers are 15-4 in the calendar’s 12th month. The Chargers have also dominated AFC West play since 2004, going 18-6 over the last four seasons. The Chargers are the only AFC West team to win back-to-back titles since the divisions realigned in 2002 and last season, the Chargers beat all three of their AFC West opponents on the road, the first time the team had done that since 1994.

The Chargers’ 2008 road schedule is highlighted by the team’s trip to London to face the New Orleans Saints in Wembley Stadium on Oct. 26. Fan packages for the London game, including tickets, are available at

The Chargers will take on the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on Sunday, Oct. 19 and depart directly for London following the game.

San Diego’s first road trip after the London game sees the team heading back to the East Coast for a nationally-televised late-afternoon game in Heinz Field against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Chargers’ first visit to Pittsburgh since 2003 figures to be a memorable one and a 4:15 p.m. kickoff on the East Coast will provide the feel of a night game. The Chargers and Steelers last met in San Diego in 2006 in a nationally-televised NBC Sunday Night game with the Bolts defeating the defending Super Bowl Champion Steelers, 23-13.

The Bolts dive into the AFC West road portion of the schedule with a pair of early season games at Denver in Week 2 (Sept. 14) and at the Raiders in Week 4 (Sept. 28). The Chargers won’t see Kansas City on the road until mid-December when they can expect a frigid reception at Arrowhead Stadium for the Dec. 14 tilt.

The Chargers will also head to the Sunshine State twice to face a pair of Florida teams, meeting the Miami Dolphins on Oct. 5 at Dolphins Stadium and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for their final prime-time game of the season, a date which could prove to be key as the Chargers meet the Bucs on NBC’s Sunday Night Football on Dec. 21 at Raymond James Stadium. The Tampa Bay game will mark the Bolts’ first-ever game at Raymond James, the same venue that will play host to Super Bowl XLIII on Feb. 1, 2009.

The Chargers’ 2008 preseason schedule was also recently announced. At home, the Chargers will face the Dallas Cowboys on Saturday, Aug. 9 at 7 p.m. and the Seattle Seahawks on ESPN’s Monday Night Football, Monday, Aug. 25 at 5 p.m. PDT. The Bolts’ road games include a game at St. Louis (Date and Time TBD) and Friday, Aug. 29 at San Francisco at 7 p.m. PDT.


San Diego Chargers 2008 Schedule
Sat. Aug. 9 DALLAS 7:00 p.m. KFMB-TV
TBD at St. Louis TBD KFMB-TV
Mon. Aug. 25 SEATTLE 5:00 p.m. ESPN
Fri. Aug. 29 at San Francisco 7:00 p.m. KFMB-TV

Sun. Sept. 7 CAROLINA 1:15 p.m. FOX
Sun. Sept. 14 at Denver 1:15 p.m. CBS
Mon. Sept. 22 NEW YORK JETS 5:30 p.m. ESPN
Sun. Sept. 28 at Oakland 1:05 p.m. CBS
Sun. Oct. 5 at Miami 10:00 a.m. CBS
Sun. Oct. 12 NEW ENGLAND 5:15 p.m. NBC
Sun. Oct. 19 at Buffalo 10:00 a.m. CBS
Sun. Oct. 26 New Orleans at London, England 10:00 a.m. CBS
Sun. Nov. 2 Bye
Sun. Nov. 9 KANSAS CITY 1:15 p.m. CBS
Sun. Nov. 16 at Pittsburgh 1:15 p.m.* CBS
Sun. Nov. 23 INDIANAPOLIS 5:15 p.m.* NBC
Sun. Nov. 30 ATLANTA 1:05 p.m.* FOX
Thurs. Dec. 4 OAKLAND 5:15 p.m. NFL Network
Sun. Dec. 14 at Kansas City 10:00 a.m.* CBS
Sun. Dec. 21 at Tampa Bay 5:15 p.m.* NBC
Sun. Dec. 28 DENVER 1:15 p.m.* CBS

All times Pacific. Home games in bold.
Home games are subject to local blackout rules and will be shown locally if they are sold out 72 hours prior to kickoff.
*Denotes flex scheduling and games subject to time change.

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Monday, April 14, 2008


Lou Gossett Jr. will emcee the events and Chaka Khan will sing the National Anthem

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Dodgers will celebrate the 61st anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier tomorrow with a variety of on-field and pregame ceremonies. In addition, for the second straight year, all Dodger uniformed personnel will honor Robinson by wearing his number 42, which is retired throughout Major League Baseball, during the game. The game-worn jerseys will be auctioned off to benefit the Dodgers Dream Foundation throughout the season.

“This organization's reputation as an agent for social change began with Jackie Robinson,” said Dodger President Jamie McCourt. “His legacy lives in the hearts of children across the globe who are unified by baseball, and more importantly, realize they too can pursue the career of their dreams. The freedom to engage in that pursuit, and the knowledge that it is their abilities that will determine their success, keeps him alive throughout the world today."

Actor Lou Gossett Jr., who grew up a Dodger fan in Brooklyn and is best known for his Oscar-winning appearance in “An Officer and a Gentleman,” will emcee the evening’s events, and Dodger legend Don Newcombe, who pioneered alongside Robinson, will also be present. Newcombe will throw out the ceremonial first pitch with Robinson’s niece, Kathy Robinson Young, who will be in attendance with her family.

Ten-time Grammy Award-winner Chaka Khan, who won the 2007 Grammy for Best R&B album, will sing the National Anthem, preceded by Nicolette Robinson, who will sing God Bless America. Nicolette Robinson is one of 11 Jackie Robinson Scholars who will be recognized during pregame ceremonies for their achievements. Nichole Whiteman, a former Jackie Robinson Scholar who is now the Director of the Western Region of the Foundation, will be recognized as well. In 2005, the Dodgers made a million-dollar commitment to fund the Jackie Robinson Foundation with more than $100,000 each year for 10 years to fund 42 college Scholarships per year. These Dodgers Scholars, called “Team 42,” each receive $2,500 from the Dodgers Dream Foundation.

In 2007, the Dodgers hosted Major League Baseball’s national Jackie Robinson Day celebration to celebrate the 60th anniversary of his breaking the color barrier and have requested through Major League Baseball that a home game be played every April 15 in order to honor the legendary Hall of Famer. The club has continued to perpetuate the beliefs of Robinson throughout the past year, as the Dodgers hosted the inaugural “Jackie Robinson Legacy Day” on January 31, 2008. The event, which took place on what would have been Robinson’s 89th birthday and coincided with the eve of Black History Month, included more than 100 local students who came to Dodger Stadium to learn first-hand from Robinson’s relatives, teammates, and others tied to the Dodgers’ diverse history and culture about his remarkable contributions to professional baseball and to the civil rights movement.

Please contact the Dodgers’ Public Relations Department at (323) 224-1301 for additional information.

The Los Angeles Dodgers, pioneers in sport and world culture, are celebrating their 50th anniversary in 2008. In that period, they have won more games, more pennants, and more World Series than any other club in the National League. Since the start of the modern era in baseball, the Dodgers of Brooklyn and Los Angeles, combined, have a cumulative attendance of more than 176 million, the highest total in the history of baseball or any other sport.

Visit the Dodgers on the Internet at


WHAT: Angels Manager Mike Scioscia is reaching out to children in the community to teach them the proper fundamentals of the game of baseball. Scioscia and the Amateur Baseball Development Group will host the Mike Scioscia Youth Baseball Clinic presented by Howard' s Big Screen and Appliances on Saturday, April 19th in Thousand Oaks. The clinic is free and open to the public.

WHEN: Saturday, April 19th, from 10:30 AM until 12:00 PM. Participants are encouraged to arrive early, and bring any Angels items for an autograph session at the conclusion of the clinic.

WHERE: Conejo Creek Ballpark
1300 E. Janss Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

(Directions: Take the 5 North to 134 West to 101 West
Takethe 23 North, Exit Janss Road and Turn East (Right)
Take the First Right into driveway BEFORE School District Offices
Follow Signs for Parking)

WHO: Scheduled to attend are Angels Manager Mike Scioscia along with select Angels players, Coaches and Broadcasters.

For more information, please go to the Amateur Baseball Development Group website at


Visit the Angels on the Internet at:

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Parker Ushers In New Era In The WNBA

I recently interviewed Candace Parker for an upcoming edition of "In My Own Words" on FSN. It was my first time ever meeting her. I didn't really know what to expect, but she surpassed all of my expectations.

I found her intelligent, engaging, funny and sincere. She spoke of herself with equal parts confidence and humility. She knows she's one of the best female basketball players in the world, but she doesn't think she's better than any one person. Having met her charming mother, it's easy to understand where those traits originate.

Both the Sparks and the WNBA are expecting great things from this 3-time All-American and 2-time NCAA champion. And for good reason. She may be the best pure talent to ever enter the league. Pat Summit, her former coach at Tennessee, believes that Parker can become the best player the women's game has ever seen. And if you know anything about Summit, you know that she doesn't exactly throw around such praise loosely.

In this day and age, however, you need more than just talent and success alone to elevate a marginal sport into the mainstream. You need Madison Avenue appeal. Something Parker seems to have been born with. She's as beautiful as she is skilled. She can make your heart flutter with a smile or a slam dunk. She can grace the cover of People Magazine or Sports Illustrated. Basically, she's got game on and off the court.

Parker's got so much game, in fact, I'm actually looking forward to the WNBA season opening. You only get so many chances to see legends of the game make their debut.

Thursday, April 10, 2008


EL SEGUNDO- Lakers center Andrew Bynum was examined yesterday in New York by knee specialist Dr. David Altchek and has not been cleared to progress to full practices or contact drills, it was announced today.

“This should not be seen as a setback in any way,” said Altchek. “Andrew will continue with his therapy program and workouts with the Lakers’ training staff and will continue to be monitored until he can return to playing status.”

There is no target date for Bynum’s return.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008


As Tim Floyd states below, this announcement comes as no surprise to anyone. OJ Mayo has been destined for the NBA since he was a 7th grader. I covered several of his games this season on FSN, and I found him to be much different than so many people had tried to portray him. He's friendly, respectful and courteous. He may not be the most outgoing player in the country--or on his own team for that matter--but I never saw him not make time to answer anyone questions following a game. By the way, remember this following statement for future reference: I think OJ Mayo will be a better pro than a college player. Good luck, OJ!

Mayo Decides To Forego His Eligibility And Enter The 2008 NBA Draft

LOS ANGELES – USC freshman guard O.J. Mayo has decided to forego his eligibility at USC and declare for the 2008 NBA Draft.

The 6-foot-5 freshman, is a dynamic all-around player widely regarded as the top player in his class since the seventh grade. Mayo has not signed with an agent, but plans to in the near future.

“I am so thankful for the fans and alumni at USC and around the nation that have been so supportive of me and my teammates throughout the season,” said Mayo. “I’d like to express my appreciation to my coaches and teammates for their support in one of the most important decisions I’ve ever made. I will be entering the 2008 NBA Draft.

“I am going to finish the semester here at USC and then focus on preparing for the NBA Draft,” added Mayo. “Attending USC has been such a great experience for me and has really helped prepare me for my next step in life.”

Coach Tim Floyd offered his support to Mayo and his family regarding his decision.

“This comes as no surprise,” said coach Floyd. “We are appreciative of everything O.J. did for all of us the year he was with us. We wish him well. I have no doubt that he will be a great professional.”

Mayo led USC in scoring (20.7), steals (51), three-pointers (88) and assists (109), was second in free throw percentage (.803) and third in rebounds (150). He established the USC freshman single-season record for points (684) and three-point baskets. Mayo’s point total was the second most ever in a season by a Trojan and the three-point basket total ranks third all-time at USC.

His scoring average of 20.7 is the best ever by a USC freshman and trails only Shareef Abdur-Rahim of California who set the Pac-10 Conference freshman record with an average of 21.1 points per game in 1995-96.

The freshman from Huntington, W.Va. was named to the All-Pac-10 First Team, Pac-10 All-Freshman Team, NABC District 15 Team and was honorable mention to the All-Pac-10 Defensive team, as well as receiving Wooden Award and Naismith Award consideration.
Mayo also was named a and Third Team All-American and a First Team All-Freshman selection.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


WHAT: Angels Baseball will hold its first-ever Yard Sale this Saturday, April 12th at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Angels' memorabilia available for purchase include stadium banners, game used jerseys and helmets, Angels t-shirts, baseballs, books, programs and more! All sales are final and purchases must be CASH ONLY. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Angels Baseball Foundation.

WHO: The Angels' Yard Sale is open to the public.

WHEN: The Yard Sale begins at 10 a.m., Saturday, April 12th. Angels Season Seat Holders will be given early entry at 9 a.m.

WHERE: The Yard Sale will take place at Angel Stadium of Anaheim under the giant hats located in front of the Home Plate Gate.

Monday, April 7, 2008


Los Angeles Clippers guard Shaun Livingston had his left knee re-examined on Monday, April 7 by Dr. James Andrews of the Alabama Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Center in Birmingham, Alabama.

Dr. Andrews examination revealed that Livingston still has some tendinitis that is showing improvement. He will be allowed to pick up the intensity of his on-court workouts by the end of the season. Livingston will continue to maintain strength work and progress with his workouts.

Livingston was originally injured during the first quarter of the Clippers win over the Charlotte Bobcats on February 26, 2007 at STAPLES Center, when he suffered tears to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), medial collateral ligament (MCL) and lateral meniscus. Livingston also suffered a patella dislocation, in addition to a tibia/femoral dislocation. Andrews performed the surgery to repair the injuries on March 13, 2007 at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Birmingham.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

NBA Dance Team Bracket Challenge

Not sure if you were aware, but there was another version of March Madness brackets this year. pitted the league's top dance teams against one another in a "win and advance" playoff with victories determined by fan voting.

After several rounds of voting, the tournament is down to the final two: Los Angeles Clippers vs. Miami Heat. Funny, this title will be the only championship either franchise will win this season.

Now, I'm not telling you who to vote for. But I'm just wondering why the Clippers dancers look like cheerleaders while the Heat dancers look like Pussycat Dolls. Check out the pics. Am I wrong?

Free Image Hosting


Check Presentation Airs on FSN WEST Saturday, April 5
During Ducks at Kings Pre-Game Show

Los Angeles – This Saturday, April 5, FSN WEST delivers coverage of the Freeway Face-Off check presentation. Los Angeles Kings’ President/General Manager Dean Lombardi will present Anaheim Ducks’ Executive Vice President and General Manager Brian Burke and the “Ducks Care” Community Foundation with a check for $50,000. The donation comes after the Ducks won this season’s inaugural Freeway Face-Off series five games to two.

Coverage of the presentation begins at 12:30 PM on the “FSN Live” pre-game show prior to the eighth and final regular season matchup between the Ducks vs. Kings on FSN WEST. The 2007-08 Freeway Face-Off series began across the Pond in London on September 29, 2007.

Following a seven-week online contest in 2007, the “Freeway Face-Off” became the official name of the Kings vs. Ducks rivalry. The “Name the Rivalry” contest winner Jenny Keane was introduced, congratulated and presented with the grand prize, which included two tickets to each of the 2007-08 “Freeway Face-Off” games. Keane, one of 65 fans who submitted “Freeway Face-Off”, was randomly selected as the winner per contest rules.

About the Los Angeles Kings on FSN WEST
FSN WEST continues its long-standing tradition of telecasting Los Angeles Kings games as it enters its 22nd season with a 65 game schedule. The first Ducks-Kings rivalry game on FSN WEST is on Thurs., Nov. 15 at 7:00 PM followed by two additional games: Thurs., Jan. 24 at 7:30 PM and Sat., April 5 at 12:30 PM.

About the Anaheim Ducks on FSN PRIME TICKET
FSN PRIME TICKET is the destination for the most Anaheim Ducks games on television. In their 14th season as telecast partner, FSN PRIME TICKET delivering 60 Ducks games to Southern California fans. The Ducks host their first Kings-Ducks rivalry game of the 2007-08 season on home ice on Tues., Nov. 13 at 6:30 PM.


Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Breaking News: Elton Brand To Play Tonight

I just got word that Elton Brand will make his much-anticipated return to the Clippers lineup tonight when they face the Sonics in Seattle. Mike Dunleavy hopes to get Brand 10-15 minutes off the bench.

It will be Brand's first game of the season after rupturing his achilles tendon in an off-season workout. He had been medically cleared about a week ago, but the Clippers decided to continue their cautious approach with Brand's rehab. He received the "go-ahead" from trainer Jasen Powell earlier today. Originally, the team thought Brand would make his return Thursday in Sacramento.

In his absence this season, the Clippers have struggled to a 22-52 record. If for nothing else, I believe his return will be a huge boost for the morale of the players as well as the entire organization.
In his 9-year career, Brand has posted averages of 20.3 points and 10.2 rebounds. Numbers the Clippers have desperately missed this season.

Chargers Sign Harris And Gordon

Chargers restricted free agent linebacker Marques Harris and exclusive rights free agent cornerback Cletis Gordon have both signed their one-year contract tenders and are now under contract for the 2008 season.

Harris has been a key reserve and special teams player throughout his three years with the Bolts. In 2007, he appeared in 15 games and started two at outside linebacker, recording 1.5 sacks and eight special teams tackles. He originally joined the Chargers in 2005 as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Southern Utah State.

Gordon saw action in 14 games last season, mostly on special teams where he recorded eight tackles. Gordon joined the Chargers in 2006 as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Jackson State.

With Harris and Gordon signed, the Chargers now have all of their restricted and exclusive rights free agents under contract for 2008.


FSN PRIME TICKET, Los Angeles Dodgers and
Combine Resources and Interact with Fans During 50th Anniversary Year

Stories Will Be Shared All Season Long at

Los Angeles – FSN PRIME TICKET, the destination for the most comprehensive coverage of the Los Angeles Dodgers, has teamed with the Dodgers and to develop an interactive fan experience in celebration of the team’s 50 years in Los Angeles.

“Every Southern Californian has a unique Dodger story, from the fond memory of attending a game to a family tradition that is practiced season after season, and everything in between,” said Steve Simpson, senior vice president and general manager, FSN PRIME TICKET. “We look forward to hearing from Dodger fans and sharing their stories on FSN PRIME TICKET throughout the anniversary.”

Dodger fans are invited to visit, powered by, the official website of Major League Baseball, to participate in “Your Story”. There will be no limit to the number of stories – each totaling 500 words or less - a fan may share. FSN PRIME TICKET will reserve the right to approach select fans and share their story on air.

FSN PRIME TICKET created the “Your Story” fan experience online as a compliment to the team’s 2008 slogan: “We’re All Dodgers”. The “Your Story” integrated marketing campaign by FSN PRIME TICKET includes on-air and outdoor components in addition to the online portion. FSN PRIME TICKET is currently running the first “Your Story” spot featuring Neil Adams at Dodger Stadium. The longtime Dodger fan shares his memories of watching the stadium’s construction in Chavez Ravine with his dad. Additionally, “Your Story” creative is running on billboards and bus kings in Los Angeles through May. The artwork features Kirk Gibson; his larger-than-life image created by a collage of photos of Dodger players and fans.

The Emmy Award-winning FSN PRIME TICKET offers Dodger fans 100 game telecasts during 2008. This year is the team’s 50th anniversary year in Los Angeles and the regional sports network’s twelfth as a Dodger team partner. The Dodgers game viewing experience on FSN PRIME TICKET is enhanced by “Dodgers Live”, a 30-minute pre-game show and full post-game coverage, and telecast tools such as the X-mo and FSN Diamond Cams.

FSN PRIME TICKET and FSN WEST have provided local sports coverage to Southern California, Nevada and Hawaii for over 20 years. Together, the regional sports networks present more live, local sports programming than any other network or broadcast system in the market, producing over 700 live sporting events and 5,000 hours of original programming each year. For complete national and regional sports news, provocative opinions, telecast schedules and updated statistics, log on to

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


This is announcement is both good and bad news potentially. It's good news for Ira Newble. He's worked hard enough and performed well enough to earn a contract for the remainder of the season, as well as a possible playoff bonus. As far as the Lakers are concerned, however, this move may very well indicate that one or possibly even two of their injured players will not be 100% healthy for the playoffs. Let's hope that's not the case.

EL SEGUNDO - The Los Angeles Lakers have signed forward Ira Newble for the remainder of the season, it was announced today by General Manager Mitch Kupchak.

Newble, currently in his eighth NBA season, signed a 10-day contract with the Lakers on March 21st. In one game with the Lakers, Newble recorded two points and one rebound in four minutes. Earlier in the season, Newble played for the Cleveland Cavaliers and Seattle Supersonics, averaging 4.2 points, 2.7 rebounds and 15.5 minutes in 43 combined games, including 13 starts.

Prior to playing in the NBA, Newble played in the International Basketball Association for the Wisconsin Blast (1997-98) and played in the CBA with the Idaho Stampede from the 1997-98 season through the 1999-2000 season.

Undrafted by an NBA team, Newble played two seasons with Mississippi Gulf Coast Junior College before attending Miami (OH) University, where he averaged 8.9 points and 6.4 rebounds in 58 games over two seasons, while being named Honorable Mention All-Mid American Conference his senior year.

In 375 career games including 197 starts, Newble is averaging 5.1 points and 2.9 rebounds in 20.3 minutes.