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Vikings Trade Yannick Ngakoue

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The Minnesota Vikings have traded pass-rusher Yannick Ngakoue to the Baltimore Ravens.

What We Know:

  • The deal will send Ngakoue to Baltimore and a 2021 third-round pick and 2022 conditional fifth-round pick to Minnesota, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
  • Ngakoue will spend the Ravens’ bye week going through COVID-19 testing. He should be available for their Week 8 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
  • Baltimore already has the league’s best defense, only allowing 17.3 points per game, and they are now adding a former Pro-Bowl selection. The Ravens are 5-1 and second in the AFC North, right behind the Steelers.
  • The Ravens previously tried to trade for Ngakoue in recent months and tried to acquire Jadeveon Clowney before the season started. The Ravens still have their franchise tag in Matthew Judon to pair with Ngakoue. Ngakoue has already been traded once this season when Jacksonville sent him to Minnesota.
  • Through six games in Minnesota, Ngakoue had five sacks, two forced fumbles, seven quarterback hits and 12 tackles, five of which resulted in losses. The Vikings unfortunately couldn’t capitalize on his production and started 1-5.

Ngakoue is reportedly excited to be heading to Baltimore. He grew up in Bowie, Maryland and played college ball at the University of Maryland.

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Sagar is a Digital Intern at UnmutedCo. He graduated from Northwestern University with a bachelor's degree in Trumpet Performance and Economics. Sagar writes for Black News Alerts and the BNA Daily Podcast. He also produces the BossFM Morning Show.

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Olympics: Simone Biles out of team gymnastics final ‘due to medical issue,’ officials say

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((BREAKING NEWS))

Biles withdrew due to a medical issue, according to a statement from USA Gymnastics.

“She will be assessed daily to determine medical clearance for future competitions,” officials said in the statement.

The four-time Olympic gold medalist competed in Team USA’s first rotation on vault Tuesday, bailing out of her Amanar and only completing a 1.5 twist on a 2.5-twisting Yurchenko, then taking a big stumble backward on the landing.

She scored a 13.766 and was seen walking off the floor with her bag and a trainer.

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Maria Taylor Signs with NBC after Parting Ways with ESPN

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ESPN announced Maria Taylor would begin work with NBC Sports by covering the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. The news comes after she and ESPN could not reach an agreement about her contract extension.

What We Know:

  • In light of her departure, ESPN chairman Jimmy Pitaro celebrated Taylor’s “ability and work ethic;” additionally, he mentioned he was proud of the work she did for the company. Pitaro stated the network remains determined to build a “deep and skilled talent roster” to reflect the athletes and topics they report and fans they serve.
  • In regards to leaving her former position, Taylor expressed gratitude for her time at ESPN; she thanked Pitaro and others for encouraging and motivating her, and declared she would “make them proud.”
  • Taylor began at ESPN by working for the SEC Network covering college sports and hosting College GameDay. Her skills and screen presence eventually landed her as the host of NBA Countdown. With NBC, she will work as a host and contributor at Football Night in America and the Super Bowl. Taylor will also co-host Prime Plus with Mike Trico.
  • When asked about her new position, Taylor said she was excited to start. She said she always dreamed of hosting events like the Olympics and the Super Bowl. Taylor added that the opportunity would be impossible without “standing on the shoulders of all those” who came before her.
  • Taylor’s future at ESPN entered limbo earlier this month after racist comments made by colleague Rachel Nichols. In released audio footage, Nichols is heard on a phone call complaining to Lebron James’ adviser Adam Mendelsohn about Taylor hosting the NBA Finals. She implied that the network only chose Taylor to improve diversity. After footage surfaced, Nichols quickly apologized but was pulled from sideline coverage.

Taylor covered Game 6 of the 2021 NBA Finals as her last assignment with ESPN.

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Olympic Opening Ceremony Director Fired for 1998 Holocaust Joke

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Organizing committee president Seiko Hashimoto announced the news a day before the Olympics’ July 23 Opening Ceremony.

What We Know:

  • The organizing committee dismissed director Kentaro Kobayashi due to a joke about the Holocaust made during a 1998 comedy act. Throughout his performance, Kobayashi includes the use of the phrase “Let’s play Holocaust.”
  • Hashimoto stated that when the committee learned Kobayashi used a phrase mocking a historical tragedy, they were extremely disappointed. He also apologized for “causing such a development” just a day before the Olympics began; Hashimoto proceeded to express remorse for troubling the involved parties and people across Japan. After the news was released, footage of Kobayashi’s skit appeared on the internet.

  • Many expressed disdain at the sketch. Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean and global social action director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, said nobody holds the right to mock victims of Nazi genocide. Cooper further mentioned how Nazis gassed disabled Germans, stating that any association of Kobayashi with the Tokyo Olympics would mock the Paralympics and insults the memory of 6 million Jews.
  • The 2021 Tokyo Olympics has been at the center of many scandals. These include banning Namibian female athletes for testosterone levels, removing Sha’Carri Richardson for marijuana, and more. According to Hashimoto, the postponed Games were supposed to send a positive message; however, the many incidents will give the Tokyo event a negative image.
  • In addition, Japan faces global criticism for proceeding with the Olympics against medical experts’ advice. Recently, Japan declared a state of emergency due to a spike in COVID-19 cases. However, ESPN reports the country partially feels pressure from the International Olympic Committee (IOC); if the Games were not held, the IOC would lose an estimated  $3 billion to $4 billion in television rights. Alongside this, government audits suggest this year’s Olympics cost more than $15.4 billion, with all but $6.7 billion being public money.

The Tokyo Olympics will continue until August 8.

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