May 5, 2010

NFL Great Joe Theismann on Triple A - and not the Baseball League

Posted: 11:52 AM ET

Joe Theismann is the former quarterback for the Washington Redskins and current analyst on the NFL Network.  His commentary is an LKL Web Exclusive.

Football is a passion of mine, no doubt. As a former player, and current NFL Network analyst, I love everything about the game.  I’m truly thankful for a professional career that has spanned more than three decades, and provided me with the opportunity to lend my voice to important public health issues. And these days, I’m passionate about bringing awareness to a silent, but preventable, killer called abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA), or “Triple A.”

Right now in the United States, there are one million people walking around with an AAA, and they don’t know it. My dad was one of those people.  A few years ago, he was diagnosed with an AAA during a routine exam.  He’s that breed of guy that says… “don’t worry, I’m fine”…no matter what’s going on.  I went along with it, but should have known better.  Had his AAA not been detected early, he probably wouldn’t be with me today.

Don’t be surprised if you’ve never heard of AAA – until my Dad was diagnosed, I had no idea what AAA was or that it could be fatal.  But here are the facts:

1. AAA is a ballooning of the abdominal aorta, the artery that carries blood to the lower part of the body

2. If an AAA goes undetected it can rupture, and only 10 percent of people will survive

3. Risk factors are common – smokers, heart problems, age 60+, family history

4. AAA can be detected and treated.  A simple, ultrasound screening can help save lives

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Health • Joe Theismann • LKL Web Exclusive • Sports

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February 24, 2010

ESPN's Tony Kornheiser in a Storm of Trouble – ends up suspended

Posted: 08:58 AM ET

Now it's Tony Kornheiser who has put his foot in his mouth.

The co-host of ESPN's "Pardon the Interruption" – known as much for his sarcastic jokes as his sports talk – turned his commentary to ESPN colleague Hannah Storm's outfit on his radio show last week.

According to The Sporting News, Kornheiser called a Storm outfit "horrifying" and described its fit on her as "like she has sausage casing wrapping around her upper body."

Kornheiser later apologized, saying, "I'm a sarcastic, subversive guy ... I'm a troll, look at me. I have no right to insult what anybody looks like or what anybody wears."

But the damage had been done. Today, ESPN announced Kornheiser's been suspended temporarily.

What do you think? Did the penalty fit the crime?

Filed under: Sports

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January 12, 2010

Larry Talks with Legendary Coach Don Shula

Posted: 07:17 PM ET
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January 6, 2010

Gilbert Arenas' Wild Wild West

Posted: 12:41 PM ET

EDITORS NOTE: The photo below shows Gilbert Arenas pretending to shoot his teammates before last nights game.  Doubtful he's referencing the days when the team used to be called the Bullets.

By Mike Wise

Happy 28th, Gil. Some great b-day, huh?

A Superior Court grand jury is weighing whether to bring charges against you for bringing guns to work. Even if you plead guilty to a misdemeanor and get community service, NBA Commissioner David Stern will probably start with a 20-game suspension and go from there.

Less than five years after you brought so much magic to town, made pro basketball matter after Michael, it's about over.

You said it best when we spoke Tuesday night: "I should just steal a quote from Batman, when he said, 'I've been around long enough to see myself turn into the bad guy.' " The fans you play for, who used to clamor for your game-worn No. 0 jersey to be tossed to them, now want you gone.

Remember three years ago? The hottest ticket in town was that black American Express envelope, the one that contained an invitation to your 25th birthday party at Love, the club where Sean Combs and other hip-hop glitterati attended. Diddy came to Northeast for you.


Filed under: Sports

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December 14, 2009

In the rough: 4 in 10 Americans have unfavorable view of Woods

Posted: 12:55 PM ET

via Washington Post

More than four in 10 Americans now hold an unfavorable view of Tiger Woods, and nearly as many say companies should steer clear of using the golf great as a product pitchman, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

Woods, broadly popular in polls over the decade, has taken a big public hit in the aftermath of his admission of "personal sins" in response to spiraling allegations of extramarital affairs.

In the new poll, 43 percent say they view Woods unfavorably, with more than one in four seeing him in a "strongly" negative light. About as many, 42 percent, have favorable impressions, but that number has been sliced roughly in half compared to recent years.

Men tilt favorably toward Woods, while women lean negative. (Men are 46 percent favorable, 41 percent unfavorable; women are 39-45.) Among those who count themselves as golf fans, Woods fares a little better, with 62 percent seeing him favorably, but even here in his base, 37 percent now view him negatively.

More than a third of fans and non-fans alike say they think companies should not continue to use Woods to endorse their products and services. One of Madison Avenue's brightest stars, Accenture yesterday severed its six-year contract with Woods, and reports have other companies reconsidering their arrangements with the world's No. 1 golfer.


Filed under: Polls • Sports • Tiger Woods

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December 9, 2009

Tiger Woods ads vanish from TV

Posted: 01:14 PM ET

NEW YORK ( - Tiger Woods is all over the TV, but his ads haven't been.

According to media tracker Nielsen, the last time a commercial featuring Tiger Woods appeared on television was Nov. 29. The 30-second Gillette ad aired during NBC's "Football Night in America," the pre-game show that broadcast prior to the Sunday night football game between the New Orleans Saints and the New England Patriots.

The ad featured Woods, New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, Spanish basketball phenom Ricky Rubio and an announcer who says, "Here's to confidence," and aired eight times during November, according to Aaron Lewis, a spokesman for Nielsen.

Since then, no Woods commercials have aired, not even over this past weekend during the Chevron World Challenge, the golf tournament hosted by Woods since 2001.

The move to pull Tiger ads was not unexpected. reported last week that sponsors have opted to continue their business relationships with Tiger but would hold back their commercials for several weeks.

"Brands that planned to use Tiger in any meaningful way in the next few weeks would be looking to perhaps do something else, both out of respect for Tiger and because now isn't the best time to have him out there peddling their product," Paul Swangard, managing director of the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center at the University of Oregon, told on Nov. 30.


Filed under: Sports • Tiger Woods

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December 8, 2009

Bryant Gumbel reveals lung cancer surgery

Posted: 02:25 PM ET

(CNN) - Bryant Gumbel made an unexpected announcement Tuesday morning as a guest host on "Live! With Regis & Kelly." The host of HBO's "Real Sports With Bryant Gumbel" had surgery two months ago to remove a malignant tumor on his lung.

Gumbel, 61, appeared on the morning talk show to fill in for Regis Philbin, who recently underwent a successful hip surgery. Gumbel, a cigar smoker, brought up his surgery after chatting with co-host Kelly Ripa about his inability to dance.

"I can't," he said. "I have a note from my doctor."

The former "Today" show host explained to viewers that he has told few people about the surgery in which part of his lung was removed.

"They opened up my chest; they took a malignant tumor, part of my lung and some other goodies," he said. "The pathology on most of the stuff came back benign but enough aggressive cells had escaped the tumor that it warranted some treatment."

Gumbel kept the treatment close to the vest. "We had told a few people. We told my family, obviously," Gumbel said. "I even kept it from my staff at 'Real Sports.' "

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death for both men and women in the United States, but it's also the most preventable, according to the American Cancer Society. Gumbel said he and his doctor are hoping his treatment is complete.


Filed under: Health • Sports

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December 3, 2009

Michael Wilbon: Tiger Woods is the rule, not the exception

Posted: 01:58 PM ET

By Michael Wilbon via Washington Post

If Tiger Woods had avoided the scandalous episode that now envelops him and has forced him to plead for privacy he would have become the great exception.

While Tiger is the first professional athlete to be smoked out quite this way in the Internet age, where salacious gossip is more eagerly consumed than a White House press conference, he nonetheless joins a club that includes plenty of other top male athletes of his generation.

Comedian Chris Rock undoubtedly put it best when he said, "A man is only as faithful as his options." And few men have the sexual options of the most famous athletes in the world.

Even if we confine the conversation to the most famous American athletes of their times, we're still talking about a list that has to include Babe Ruth, Joe Louis, Joe DiMaggio, Muhammad Ali, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Tom Brady and Alex Rodriguez.

Whispers and innuendo followed Ruth and Louis. TMZ and US Magazine stalk Tiger Woods.

Regardless of how one feels about marital infidelity, the only difference between Woods and the icons who preceded him is the increasing tolerance (dare I say appetite) for the details of their personal lives.

Fact is, over the last century the greatest athletes of whatever day are virtually winless against sexual temptation. Actually, I can think of one athlete who was the most famous of his day whose name was never attached, that I know of, to any rumors of infidelity - Jackie Robinson. That's it, that's the list.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying every athlete is unfaithful. I've covered guys, some who played their careers in this town, that I would bet my own money are faithful. But they aren't the greatest of their day, the Bambinos and Tigers, guys who could walk into a room and turn, say, Frank Sinatra's head, just to pick an American icon who exercised his own options, and brazenly at that.

The point here isn't to condone Tiger's transgressions (his word); it's to say we need a little context. I'm sure there are many who will read this column (if they're still with me) and scream bloody murder that I'm not upset at what they'd consider a lack of virtue in Woods.

My take on this has been pretty consistent over my 30 years as an adult and as a sportswriter who has gotten to know some of the people on the above list fairly well. Virtue in sports is whether you can hit a jumper as time expires in the playoffs, or hit 50 home runs in a season, or sink a putt on the 72nd hole to win the Masters.


Filed under: Sports • Tiger Woods

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December 1, 2009

Tiger Woods gets citation but questions still linger

Posted: 07:32 PM ET

By Jason Sobel via ESPN

First things first: The citation issued to Tiger Woods by the Florida Highway Patrol for careless driving will only cost him a maximum of $164 - which means it could be less - so let's not start up a collection for golf's Billion-Dollar Man just yet.

All jokes aside, the negligible fine after hitting a fire hydrant and tree in front of his home early Friday morning should feel like another par save for the man who led the PGA Tour in scrambling this season.

While the announcement of this traffic violation quells any notion of further illegalities stemming from the incident, it still leaves many burning questions for inquiring minds.

Where was Woods going at 2:25 a.m.? How, exactly, did the accident occur? Why did his wife, Elin, reportedly need to smash a back window in order to free him from the vehicle?

It doesn't appear likely that we'll find out the detailed answers to such questions anytime soon, if ever. Throughout his professional career, Woods has remained mum on personal issues from swing changes to knee injuries. His theory: If I don't want you to know something, I simply won't tell you.

It's a strategy he has maintained in recent days, likely at the suggestion of his legal counsel. While it was not mandatory for him to speak with the FHP, three times officers came to his Windermere, Fla., home and three times they were sent away without comment.


Filed under: Sports • Tiger Woods

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November 10, 2009

Basketball great Abdul-Jabbar has cancer

Posted: 01:45 PM ET

118634_1DA0592By Miriam Falco

NEW YORK (CNN) - Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, one of the greatest college and professional basketball players of all time, says he has been diagnosed with a form of blood cancer.

"I have chronic myeloid leukemia," Abdul-Jabbar told CNN. He said he received the diagnosis last December.

The 62-year-old former center for the Los Angeles Lakers said aside from having to see his doctor and checking his blood levels on a regular basis, having chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) hasn't significantly affected his quality of life.

Abdul-Jabbar said he's going public now to educate people about this disease.

"I think it's possible for someone in my position to help save lives," he said.

Abdul-Jabbar is best known as the 7-foot-2 center who led the UCLA Bruins to three NCAA championships in the 1960s, then went on to win one NBA championship with the Milwaukee Bucks in 1971 and five more with the Los Angeles Lakers before retiring in 1989.


Filed under: Sports

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