NBA podcast: Enes Kanter on trolling LeBron, being Muslim in the NBA and playing with Russell Westbrook

On the latest “Posting Up,” podcast New York Knicks center Enes Kanter talks about trolling LeBron James and more. (Jesse Johnson/USA TODAY Sports) New York Knicks center Enes Kanter has turned himself into a solid NBA center, one known as a prolific scorer and rebounder who struggles defensively. But the Turkish big man has arguably become more famous for something else: His trolling — specifically, his trolling of LeBron James. Here is what Kanter tweeted in the wake of his former team, the Oklahoma City Thunder, crushing James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, 148-124, in a game in Cleveland Saturday afternoon. 148 ⚡️#StriveForGreatness — Enes Kanter (@Enes_Kanter) January 20, 2018 The issues between Kanter and James go back to earlier this season, when James — in the run-up to a game at Madison Square Garden — criticized the Knicks for selecting Frank Ntilikina over Dennis Smith Jr. with the No. 8 overall draft pick. That led to a dust-up between all three players during the subsequent game. “Before the game, I wasn’t thinking I was going to fight him, and make the crowd go crazy,” Kanter said with a laugh on the latest episode of “Posting Up,” The Washington Post’s NBA podcast. “But I think it just happened during the game because . . . when they call you ‘The King,’ and they say you are the best player on Earth, you don’t go out there and break a 19-year-old kid’s confidence. I saw [Ntilikina] after those comments and I saw he was really down. “We talked to him. Me, and some of the vets, we talked to him and said, ‘Hey man, you have to step up for yourself.’ And he did.” Eventually, Kanter and James got into it, too. “You just don’t mess with rookies,” he said. The subject of taking on James was just one of many things discussed with Kanter during a wide-ranging half-hour interview. Others Continue Reading

NBA Podcast: The Year in Review

The NBA found itself at the center of several facets of a highly eventful 2017, both in terms of events on the court and what its stars were doing off of it. From the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers making it to a third straight NBA Finals, to Russell Westbrook becoming a one-man wrecking crew and winning the league’s MVP award, to the influx of future stars in what looks to be a very impressive draft class, to players being more willing than ever to speak their minds on social issues, the NBA found the spotlight in ways it rarely has before. So, with the year at its end, the latest episode of “Posting Up” dives into what made this calendar year for the NBA so unique. Host Tim Bontemps dove into the past 12 months with a series of veteran NBA reporters: ESPN’s Brian Windhorst and Ian Begley, The Athletic’s Anthony Slater,’s Jay King, Fred Katz from the Norman Transcript, Bill Oram from the Southern California News Group, and Sam Amick from USA Today. Please subscribe to the podcast at any of the places you can get your hands on it, including Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Play, TuneIn, RadioPublic and iHeartRadio. And when you do, please give it a five-star rating and review. It is helpful and appreciated. While you’re at it, give some of The Washington Post’s other excellent podcasts a shot, including Constitutional, Can He Do That?, and The Fantasy Football Beat. Are you interested in smart, thoughtful analysis of the NBA from The Washington Post and around the Web delivered to your inbox every Monday morning? If so, sign up for the Monday Morning Post Up, The Washington Post’s NBA newsletter. Continue Reading

Whole New Game: How fantasy football’s explosion during Roger Goodell’s 10 years as commissioner has changed way we cover, follow and consume NFL

The line between fantasy and reality has blurred the NFL universe, prompting an eruption that has taken the sport to new levels. The fantasy boom under Roger Goodell’s 10-year stewardship has jolted the league landscape by changing how we discuss, view and think about football. For better or worse, the NFL’s heightened popularity is rooted in a nerdy game born in a New York hotel more than a half century ago. The late Wilfred Winkenbach’s brain child has spawned a new NFL, where PPR, RBBC and Sleepers have become a part of the lexicon and the thirst for information is never quenched. Fantasy football has been the driving force behind the sport’s soaring interest in the past decade, a fickle game of skill and chance designed to thrill, anger and disappoint you every fall. “It’s fueled the popularity and explosion of football,” ESPN Insider Adam Schefter said. “It’s the HGH of the sport.” Fantasy has become such a part of the fabric of the sport that NFL owners Jerry Jones and Bob Kraft both have a stake in DraftKings, one of the two most popular Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) sites. A game once reserved for stat geeks is no longer marginalized. The Fantasy Sports Trade Association estimates 57 million people in the United States and Canada play fantasy sports, a more than 200% spike from the 18 million players in 2006. Forty million people play fantasy football today in what has become a $19 billion business. “This is a big part of our world,” NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport said. The scope has broadened. Every team matters. Every play matters. Fantasy has changed the discourse of the most popular sport in the country. This is not your father’s NFL. “Ten years ago, people still held fantasy at arm’s length,” ESPN’s top fantasy analyst, Matthew Berry, said. “There was the stereotype of the nerd in his mom’s basement. Now, you Continue Reading

With more sports celebrities than ever, expect more morbid years like 2016

This has been an especially tough year and you better get used to it. In just the last week, the world lost sports legends Muhammad Ali and Gordie Howe. They were the latest in a too-long list of celebrities who died in 2016, a year that also claimed icons like Prince and David Bowie. Indeed, this has been an especially tough year in terms of the stars taken from us. But the coming years will not be any easier because modern media, with its many outlets and the legions of famous people they produce, has exponentially expanded the catalogue of people we know about. And eventually, those people will die. Make no mistake: Ali and Howe and Prince and Bowie were all one of a kind. Before reading another word, you should know that Ali and Howe were transcendent sports stars who were famous well before the definition and criteria of what makes someone famous was warped and stretched and thinned by the plethora of media we now consume. Their fame was earned, deserved and their status as legends should not be taken lightly. Today’s society has more celebrities than ever before. We know about more famous folks than ever. It’s a matter of fact that we simply know about more people now than we did in the past. “Because media is fragmented and there are more avenues for people to become well known. When these people pass, there is obviously a larger pool of people to note their passing,” Robert Thompson, a professor and the founding director of the Bleier Center for Television & Popular Culture at Syracuse University told the Daily News. “On the other hand,” he said, “few of them are really superstars.” Kimbo Slice, who also died this week, was a product of this very culture. He was one of the first internet stars, a guy who got famous by knocking people out in bareknuckle backyard brawls. We knew about Kimbo Slice not because he was a world-renowned prizefighter, but because of Continue Reading

Will you ever Yahoo again?

MANHATTAN BEACH, Calif. - It's been several years since I've Yahoo'd. How about you?This week Yahoo, one of the oldest Internet brands, became part of the Verizon empire, one of the companies (along with HuffPost, AOL and TechCrunch) that live within the newly created Oath unit, which hopes to compete against Google and Facebook as a bulked-up alternative for online advertisers.Good luck, Oath.And let's take a quick minute and look at the jewel of Oath, the beleaguered and ignored If any website sorely needed a fresh coat of paint and new outlook, it's Yahoo.Going to the page is like going back in time to the days of MySpace and AOL, sites that were littered with gossip, celebrity news and really cheap ads for infomercial products. And what did we see on Yahoo's front page this week? Trending stories about the late singer Whitney Houston, former pop queen Britney Spears and even country icon Dolly Parton; ads for cheap credit card and mortgage rates and cruise deals, along with articles about cute pets, Apple and Samsung smartphones and Donald Trump. (The handful of concessions to current times.)"There's just too much going on," Samantha Stonich, a tourist from Florida visiting Manhattan Beach, Calif. told us this week. "I don't use Yahoo at all. It's outdated." (Watch Stonich talking to us about Yahoo in this video here.)Yahoo, which started in 1994 as a pre-Google search engine, and morphed into a "portal" for reading e-mail, keeping up on news, weather and sports, has also been the victim of some bad breaks. Beyond the corporate missteps that thwarted former CEO Marissa Mayer in her efforts to revitalize the brand, there were those two nasty e-mail breaches. Yahoo said that some 1.5 billion e-mail accounts were hacked in separate attacks in 2013 and 2014. There are more than one billion reasons to have stopped using Yahoo.Yet Yahoo is still a top Internet Continue Reading