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What Had Happened Was: 12/12/17

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  • LaMelo and LiAngelo Ball have reached an agreement to play overseas for Lithuanian club Prienu Vytautas, the team’s general manager/coach Virginijus Seskus and the Ball family’s agent, Harrison Gaines, confirmed to ESPN’s Jeff Goodman. The two younger brothers of Los Angeles Lakers point guard Lonzo Ball will both forgo their college educations to play pro ball in Europe on one-year deals before they’re eligible for the NBA. LiAngelo Ball, 19, recently withdrew from his freshman year at UCLA, where he was suspended from the basketball team indefinitely after a shoplifting incident during a team trip in China. In October, LaVar Ball pulled his youngest son, LaMelo, 16, out of Chino Hills High School during his junior year. A source told ESPN that the Ball brothers will each likely see 20 to 25 minutes a game in one of the two leagues that Vytautas competes in.
  • Giancarlo Stanton was officially announced as the newest member of the New York Yankees at a news conference on Monday, after a trade sent the former Miami Marlins slugger and 2017 National League MVP to New York. The trade sets up the 2017 NL home run leader to be paired in the outfield with the 2017 American League home run leader, Aaron Judge, who was also named the 2017 AL Rookie of the Year. “I feel sorry for the baseballs …,” Stanton told the YES Network of a lineup featuring both himself and Judge. “It’ll be a good dynamic. We’re gonna to be tough, and it’s going to be hard to get through us all.”
  • Matt Barnes announced his retirement from the NBA on his Instagram account on Monday, marking the end of the 37-year-old veteran forward’s career. “Had a cool 15yr run!! Traveled the world met alota cool people, some will be brothers for the rest of my life!” Barnes wrote in the post. “BUT NOW…. You telling me I can dress like this for business meetings & make more money off the court than I made ON?? & spend more time with my kids??!!Ha… MEEEEE the one that wasn’t suppose to be s— & ended up making it!! Let’s Do it! Love me or HATE ME, I DID IT MY WAY!” Barnes had yet to play with a team this season despite being a part of the Golden State Warriors’ 2017 NBA championship-winning team. In 14 NBA seasons, Barnes averaged 8.2 points and 4.6 rebounds a game while playing for nine different teams.

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On this day in sports history

On Dec. 12, 1968, Arthur Ashe became the first African-American to be ranked No. 1 by the United States Lawn Tennis Association. Earlier that year, Ashe emerged as the first African-American to the win the US Open, and he would later earn the same distinction at both the Australian Open in 1970 and Wimbledon in 1975. As the first African-American selected to compete with the U.S. Davis Cup team in 1963, Ashe also helped lead the country to five championships (1963, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1978). After his death in 1993 at the age of 49 from AIDS-related pneumonia, Ashe was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his societal contributions both on and off the tennis court.



Aaron Dodson is a sports and culture writer at Andscape. He primarily writes on sneakers/apparel and hosts the platform’s Sneaker Box video series. During Michael Jordan’s two seasons playing for the Washington Wizards in the early 2000s, the “Flint” Air Jordan 9s sparked his passion for kicks.