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Frank Vogel, Roy Hibbert, and LeBron James: Who Is To Blame For Pacers Loss?

LeBron James submitted an MVP effort last night in Miami, hitting a game-winning layup in overtime to overcome a very tough Pacers team and protect home court advantage. James finished with 30 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists for yet another playoff triple-double, the ninth of his career. Among active players, that puts him just one behindRajon Rondo and Jason Kidd. But the final two of his 30 points were the most crucial, and they came with Indiana big man and shot blocker extraordinaire Roy Hibbert sitting on the bench. Pacers coach Frank Vogel elected to bench Hibbert to counter Miami's small lineup, and when James slashed to the hoop for the uncontested game winner, the camera cut to a defeated Hibbert, hanging his head and smirking. ESPN's Bill Simmons may have said it best.

It's silly to second guess coaches after the fact, but it's also incredibly satisfying. Most people, put in that position, would keep Hibbert in the game. Of course, most people would not be able to get within 100 feet of an NBA bench unless someone hooked them up with courtside seats. Coaching is incredibly difficult as it is, and magnifying small decisions like this can drive coaches crazy. The thing is, most coaches place way too much value on their own ability. Yankees coach Joe Girardi famously manages from a binder filled with matchup breakdowns and statistics. Patriots coach Bill Belicheck goes for it on fourth down and fails. Even legendary Lakers/Bulls coach Phil Jackson stubbornly runs his Triangle offense, sometimes irrespective of the personnel on his team. To ascend to a high position, you need to have confidence in yourself and your abilities. But just because someone has put you in charge of a team doesn't make you a genius. A real genius recognizes that they can only affect a situation so much, and that over thinking is the first step toward a mistake. Take Vogel's counterpart last night, Erik Spoelstra. He's done a fantastic job of coaching the Miami Heat because he was able to convince superstars to play defense and rely on ball movement. It's a testament to his coaching ability that he was able to identify the assets of his players and exploit them. Vogel was trying to play chess on the last play, and got cute. Taking Hibbert out was a mistake, but the best player in the league also completely punked one of the best defenders in the league, Paul George, simply by virtue of how scary he is to defend. George overplayed James completely, and his momentum was so away from the basket he could barely catch up to the freight train that is LeBron driving to the hoop.

Is George to blame? Is Vogel? Should Hibbert have demanded to stay in the game, like he said afterwards? When you're going against LeBron James, it's no one's fault. Lex Luther probably doesn't fret too much when he gets defeated by Superman time and again, because... well, it's freakin' Superman. No amount of coaching or planning can stop that. Maybe Vogel has some kryptonite handy? That might be a better coaching move in Game 2. Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

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Paul Marotta

Report: Redskins Considering Signing Colin Kaepernick

Colin Kaepernick has been without a job for nearly two years now, following his protest against social injustice during the national anthem. While the quarterback has been blacklisted from the NFL, things may finally be looking up. According to NFL coach Jay Gruden, the Washington Redskins are seriously considering signing Kaepernick.

Gruden revealed the news during a press conference on Tuesday (Dec. 4) after losing their second quarterback in the last month, TMZ reports. "[There's] not a lot of time to get a brand new QB and a system installed and taught in a couple days," Gruden said . "[Kaepernick has] been talked about and discussed..."

The Redskins previously lost their starting quarterback Alex Smith to a bad injury in Nov. 2018. They reportedly considered Kaepernick back then, but decided to go forward with Mark Sanchez. The team lost another starter, Colt McCoy to a broken fibula, which led them back to Kap.

As previously reported, Kaepernick filed a grievance against the NFL and its owner, accusing them of colluding to not hire him to a team for the 2017 season.

While the team is still in consideration, Gruden suggested that they will "probably go in a different direction." Nevertheless, he said the team will have a workout with its quarterback this week.

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Nicholas Hunt

Magic Johnson's Daughter Elisa Narrowly Escapes Home Invasion

Magic Johnson's daughter, Elisa Johnson was reportedly involved in a home invasion in San Fernando Valley on Sunday (Dec. 2), TMZ reports. Johnson was reportedly staying at an Airbnb that she rented with friends when the attack occurred.

It's unclear if the suspects broke in or if the door was unlocked, authorities say. Nevertheless, it was reported that two armed men entered the establishment, and began terrorizing the 10 people staying there at gunpoint.

Elisa was reportedly in one of the bedrooms when she heard the commotion. She then escaped through a sliding door that was located at the back of the house and ran down the street to get help.

Luckily, no one was harmed during the robbery. But the bandits did make off with at least $30K to $40K in valuables, including jewelry, cash, and electronics.

Elisa is the youngest child of NBA legend Magic and Cookie Johnson. She previously appeared on E!'s reality series Rich Kids of Beverley Hills and her brother EJ Johnson's spinoff show, EJNYC.

It appears that Elisa may have responded to the reports on her Instagram Stories on Sunday (Dec. 2), saying, "God is good."

Airbnb also released a statement on Monday (Dec. 3), addressing the rarity of this incident. "There have been over 400 million guest arrivals in Airbnb listings and negative incidents are extremely rare. We are urgently investigating this incident and are reaching out to our community members and local law enforcement to better understand what happened," the statement reads.

It's unclear why the burglars targeted Johnson at this time. Police say they fled the scene before they arrived. Authorities are still investigating the situation.

READ MORE: Magic Johnson Doesn't Let His Daughter Date Athletes

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Kansas City Chiefs Player Released From Team After Video Surfaces Of Him Attacking Woman

The Kansas City Chiefs have released 23-year-old running back, Kareem Hunt, after video surfaced of him attacking a woman in a Cleveland hotel earlier in the year. Hunt's friends told police that the woman, identified as 19-year-old Abigail Ottinger, became physical and called them the n-word after she was asked to leave his hotel room.

“Earlier this year, we were made aware of an incident involving running back Kareem Hunt At that time, the National Football League and law enforcement initiated investigations into the issue,” the Chiefs said in a statement Friday (Nov. 30). “As part of our internal discussions with Kareem, several members of our management team spoke directly to him. Kareem was not truthful in those discussions. The video released today confirms that fact. We are releasing Kareem immediately.”

Hunt issued a statement apologizing for his actions. "I deeply regret what I did," he said. "I hope to move on from this."

Statement from former Chiefs’ RB Kareem Hunt to ESPN: “I want to apologize for my actions. I deeply regret what I did. I hope to move on from this.”

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 1, 2018

The surveillance footage, posted by TMZ Sports early Friday, was recorded on February 10 and shows the 23-year-old athlete bum-rushing and kicking Ottinger.

In the video, Ottinger is seen swinging at Hunt who then attacks her as friends try to hold him back. According to a police report, Ottinger and her friend were invited to Hunt’s room by one of his friends. Hunt asked the women to leave after he found out that they weren’t old enough to drink.

One of Hunt’s friends gave Ottinger money for a cab but she refused to leave the building and repeatedly banged on Hunt’s door for “20 minutes.” Ottinger is also accused of physically attacking one of Hunt’s female friends who stepped in to mediate.

The surveillance video goes on to show Hunt shoving a friend into Ottinger and knocking her to the ground. Hunt appears to kick her just as she tries to get back up. Ottinger was removed by security while police were called to the scene.  Upon being interviewed while still in the building, Ottinger told authorities that Hunt assaulted her and that they had just met earlier that day.

Ottinger also made reference to the incident being captured on surveillance camera.

Hunt was not arrested at the time, as authorities could not determine that a crime had been committed. They later obtained the surveillance footage and submitted it to prosecutors over the case, TMZ reports. It's unclear exactly when the NFL became aware of the recording.

Hunt was drafted to the Kansas City Chiefs in 2017. He was sent home early from practice on Friday, prior to being officially released from the team.

See the video of the incident below.

READ MORE: NFL Owners Moving To Fine Teams For Players Who Protest Beyond The Locker Room

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