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Zach Lavine Will Not Be Defending His Slam Dunk Contest Title

No three-peat.

It looks like fans won't be getting a Sprite Slam Dunk contest rematch between the Orlando Magic's Aaron Gordon and the Minnesota Timberwolves' Zach Lavine, as the latter has reportedly declined the invite to show his skills during the upcoming All-Star Weekend in NOLA (Feb. 17-19).

For unclear reasons, the two-time consecutive champion will not be going for a three-peat, per NBA writer Jon Krawczynski.

Lavine has wowed the crowd with some insane dunks since competing in one of the highlights of All-Star Weekend as a rookie in 2015. A two-time consecutive champion, 21-year-old Lavine is also the youngest winner of the competition since 18-year-old Kobe Bryant in 1997.

Last year, Lavine and Gordon's exciting head-to-head competition was must-watch television, as the players went through two tie-breakers in the final round. In the end, Lavine edged out Gordon by three points.

Who are you hoping can deliver in the coveted contest this year? Sound off in the comments, and relive some of Lavine's best dunks below.

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Former NFL Player Arrested For Faking A Hate-Crime Fueled Burglary

A former NFL player is potentially facing hate crime charges for burglarizing his own restaurant in hopes to cash out on the insurance.

Last week, Gwinett County police were called to Edawn Louis Coughman's Create and Bake Pizza and Coughman's Creamery in Lawrenceville, Georgia to respond to a burglary in progress. Police went inside both businesses to find racially-insensitive words, swastikas, and Donald Trump's 'MAGA' motto plastered on the walls. However, it didn't take long for authorities to piece together the crime.

“It appears as though Edawn conjured a premeditated plan to damage his own property, attempt to make it appear as a hate crime, file a claim with his insurance company, and sell off the undamaged appliances and electronics,” police said in a statement.

Cpl. Michele Pihera spoke with a local news outlet and said a shopping plaza maintenance worker saw someone burglarizing the establishments and called the police. Already in the area, authorities located a black truck with missing license plates. When they pulled the car over, Coughman was inside along with several flat-screen TVs.

The black spray paint seen inside the restaurant was reportedly discovered on the former Dallas Cowboy and Arizona Cardinal's hand.

“He had reported this incident to his insurance company prior to officers conducting that first pull-over,” Pihera said. “He was attempting to leave that shopping center when our officers conducted that felony stop. Everything lined up for this perfect arrest.”

The truck was later impounded by Gwinnett County Police Headquarters and by Thursday afternoon, authorities located a crowbar and black spray paint. Coughman reportedly was released on bond and faces insurance fraud, making a false report and a tag violation for taking his plate off.

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DeSean Jackson To Auction Pre-Game Cleats In Honor Of Nipsey Hussle

Those that Nipsey Hussle made an impact on are making sure the slain rapper's legacy lives on. As the NFL regular season kicked off on Sept. 8, Philadelphia Eagles' wide receiver DeSean Jackson shared that he'll auction off his pre-game cleats in honor of the Victory Lap artist.

Jackson said the proceeds will benefit Hussle's children, Emani and Kross. On Instagram, Jackson posted an image of the shoes with a quote stated by the "Racks In The Middle" rapper: "You've got to have faith in what you're doing and not take no for an answer." The cleats also feature an image of the late entrepreneur and his Victory Lap logo.

 

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Every game this year Im auctioning my @nipseyhussle cleats I wear in Pre game. Proceeds will go to his kids Kross & Emani !! Link will be up this week. Rest in paradise bro !! 💪🏾🏁💪🏾 #TMC

A post shared by Desean Jackson (@0ne0fone) on Sep 8, 2019 at 5:16pm PDT

On March 31, 2019, Nipsey Hussle was fatally shot outside of his Marathon Clothing store in Los Angeles. Eric Holder, the shooter, was charged with a count of murder, a count of firearm possession as a felon, and two counts of attempted murder.

Earlier this year, Hussle's family announced the Neighborhood Nip Foundation which will place an emphasis on the youth to help them find a footing with the arts. “The foundation will be aligned with everything Nip believed in and what helped him,” his brother, Samiel Asghedom, said to the Los Angeles Times.

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David Ortiz Makes First Appearance At Fenway Park Since Dominican Republic Shooting

It's been four months since former Boston Red Sox David Ortiz has made a public appearance since he was shot in the Dominican Republic. It was only natural that the slugger threw out the first pitch prior to Monday's game (Sept. 9) against the New York Yankees at Fenway Park.

Greeted with love and praise, the emotional scene was the perfect way to kick-off the week for the Red Sox team. The major league baseball team shared the tear-jerking moment on its Twitter page on Monday (Sept. 9).

Boston loves you, @davidortiz. pic.twitter.com/pQt85arS6W

— Red Sox (@RedSox) September 9, 2019

Good to be back. pic.twitter.com/dI5bLvTqf0

— Red Sox (@RedSox) September 10, 2019

"I want to thank the Red Sox, my real family. They always have been there for me, supporting me. They were aware of what happened to me, and they were the first ones there supporting me. Thank you very much, Red Sox fans," Ortiz said.

NBC10 Boston reports that 14 people have been arrested in the case. Investigators in the Dominican Republic believe the shooting was a case of mistaken identity and Ortiz was not the intended target.

The Red Sox legend has hired former Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis to investigate the shooting.

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