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Mike Tyson accused of stealing ice cream at U.S. Open

A concessions worker at the U.S. Open tennis tournament at Flushing Meadows, N.Y., reported that former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson took a $5.50 Ben & Jerry’s ice cream bar on Monday without paying for it. “It was Tyson; I recognized him,” she told the New York Daily News. “I was like, yeah, what do you want me to do, run after him? . . . I was afraid he might bite off my ear.” She said she confronted him later when he walked past her stand at Arthur Ashe Stadium during the opening round. “I said, ‘Really, Mike, you took my ice cream.’ He said, ‘Yeah, I know, I stole your ice cream.’” The worker said that on Tuesday someone from Tyson’s camp stopped by to give her the $5.50 the champ owed.


Kaepernick sits during anthem to protest racial injustice

Colin Kaepernick is one NFL quarterback never suspected of social conscience. Some of the San Francisco 49ers have grumbled about his being self-absorbed, headphones strapped on, tuning out everyone else.   But he set off earthquake tremors by refusing to stand for the national anthem before Friday night’s preseason game against Green Bay. “I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag of a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” he said. He’s as qualified as anyone to take a position on a racially tinged subject, being that he’s biracial, and raised by white parents. “There are bodies in the street,” he pointed out, “and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.” Yes, he’s aware of what happens to football players who become a Distraction. Especially vulnerable are highly paid backup quarterbacks, of which he is one. Twitter is ablaze, and football fans are burning his $100 jerseys in their own protest. His former teammate, Alex Boone, somehow interpreted his sitdown as an insult to the Marine Corps, even though Kaepernick’s beef is with civilian police, not the armed services. Donald Trump suggested he “find a country that works better for him.” Kaepernick seems unfazed by the uproar. “If they take football away, my endorsements from me, I know that I stood up for what is right.”   

NotepadDear Colin: You’re braver than you think. The love-it-or-leave-it crowd is as passionate as you, and lots of ‘em are carrying guns. And how much protection do you expect from the police you’re complaining about?


NFL concerned about Ezekiel’s near brush with devil weed

Ezekiel Elliott ran so effectively against the Seattle Seahawks that Legion of Boomers Kam Chancellor and Richard Sherman praised the Dallas Cowboys rookie after Thursday night’s preseason game was over. But what drew more attention was Elliott’s stroll earlier in the day into a marijuana dispensary named Herban Legends, as filmed by TMZ. Elliott was not seen buying any of the store’s products, which he legally could have done. But just being there was enough to cause alarm. In Roger Goodell’s NFL, smoking marijuana is usually punished more harshly than bruising your girlfriend. Which Elliott has also been accused of doing. The evidence submitted by Tiffany Thompson was not corroborated by people near the scene of the alleged abuse, and police described the case as “she said, he said.” But it’s not closed. ESPN reported that the NFL is concerned about Elliott’s recent “pattern of behavior.” Cowboys owner Jerry Jones called Elliott’s horticultural foray “just not good.”

NotepadDear Roger and Jerry: Ease up. Zeke had the right to enter a legal place of business. It wasn’t any more wrong than walking into a Las Vegas hotel where football bets are made. There’s no harm in looking.


NFL executives ponder eliminating preseason games

Could the NFL be about to curtail – or perhaps eliminate entirely – its preseason schedule? Suddenly there’s reason to hope. Seth Wickersham, one of ESPN’s reporters covering the NFL preseason, tweeted (@SethWickersham) about “lots of chatter among execs that next year it could be all live scrimmages with coaches mic’d up.” Owners are starting to wonder if the millions made from sellout crowds paying regular-season prices is worth losing some of their greatest stars, latest being Dallas Cowboys QB Tony Romo. The hitting in preseason is as impactful as in the regular season, with so many players looking to win jobs, if not games. Concussion damage is gaining more lip service from owners who realized it’s as apt to happen in preseason as later. No doubt scrimmages could be dressed up enough to justify charging for attendance. But unlike in actual games, restrictions could be imposed to limit contact with quarterbacks.


Bryan Stork’s career skids after four concussions

Bryan Stork was a hero of the New England Patriots’ Super Bowl championship season of 2014, as he stepped in as a rookie, fourth-round pick, to become the starting center and stabilize a tattered line. But injuries derailed a promising career. He suffered at least four concussions in two years, and his effectiveness declined. The Patriots planned to cut him in training camp but worked out a trade with Washington, where he was going to back up Kory Lichtensteiger. But Stork failed his physical, so he went back to New England, which had to return the conditional seventh-round draft pick it received for him. Stork is pondering retirement at 25.


IndyCar race at Fort Worth ends 2½ months after it began

Because of a rain storm in June, the Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway near Fort Worth was interrupted and then suspended for 2 ½ months. Graham Rahal finally won it Sunday by just a few inches over James Hinchcliffe, the early leader – and leader for 76 days. It was the closest IndyCar race ever at the speedway, a margin of eight-thousandth’s of a second. Rahal never led until the final lap. It was his fourth career victory in the IndyCar series.

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