Lavar Arrington, Bruce Pearl, Jeff Pearlman Debate Ray Rice’s NFL Future On This Week’s Edition Of Jim Rome On SHOWTIME®

showtime-sports“You cannot get out of the way of punching that woman in her face and get another job. It won’t happen.”

– LaVar Arrington, on Ray Rice being suspended for domestic violence


This Month’s Edition of JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME® Premieres

Tuesday, September 9 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME;



 LOS ANGELES (September 9, 2014) – Three-time Pro Bowl linebacker and NFL Network analyst LaVar Arrington, Auburn basketball coach Bruce Pearl and New York Times best-selling author Jeff Pearlman debate the developing story behind the suspension of Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice on this month’s edition of JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME premiering Tuesday at 10 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME.

“You cannot get out of the way of punching that woman in her face and get another job,” Arrington said. “It won’t happen. That video will be the long-lasting legacy. He will have to walk around with the scarlet letter on his chest for the rest of his life. That will never go away.”

“I think it will be very difficult, given what we’ve seen, that he’s going to have an opportunity to come back,” Pearl said. “If he doesn’t get back to the league, it sends a message that this conduct is inappropriate, it’s illegal, it’ll put you in jail, and the next guy who thinks about raising his hand to a woman, he’d better put that hand down, because he’s going to lose his right to play ball.”

While Pearl and Arrington argued that Rice may never play another down in the NFL, Pearlman was emphatic that Rice will be given another chance because sports are a bottom-line business.

“I will make a guarantee, and I will win this bet,” Pearlman said. “Next year, there will be a press conference – it could be in Cleveland, it could be in Indianapolis, it could be in New York. A tearful Ray Rice will be holding the hand of his wife after a year of redemption. (He’ll be saying) ‘I learned this, I volunteered with this’ … and the owner of the team will be up there saying ‘We believe in second chances. That’s what we do in America. He’s on a short leash here.’ We do this (expletive) in sports all the time. Why? Because ultimately it’s about winning, and Ray Rice is a good running back. I guarantee you he will come back.”

Arrington, Pearl and Pearlman also discuss the other most relevant topics in sports with Rome in The Forum, including the suspension and concussion issues surrounding Denver Broncos receiver Wes Welker, the mounting pressure on the Washington Redskins to change their name and Atlanta Hawks owner Bruce Levenson selling his controlling interest in the team after self-reporting racially insensitive emails.

Detroit Tigers left-hander and 2012 American League Cy Young award winner David Price, Philadelphia Eagles running back and two-time Pro Bowler LeSean McCoy, New Orleans Pelicans all-star Anthony Davis and Chris Herren, a former NBA point guard and recovering drug addict, all appear on Tuesday’s show as well.

Here are some additional highlights from Tuesday’s show:

Concerning Ray Rice being released by the Ravens and suspended indefinitely by the NFL:

JIM ROME: “Did the team get it right?”

LaVAR ARRINGTON: “They had to. That is some of the most damning information that you can have. The first thing I thought was it happened too easy … You look at the reaction afterwards. It wasn’t like he was freaking out, but the hand just released way too easily.”

“You cannot get out of the way of punching that woman in her face and get another job. It won’t happen. That video will be the long-lasting legacy. He will have to walk around with the scarlet letter on his chest for the rest of his life. That will never go away.”

JEFF PEARLMAN: I’m from New Rochelle, New York, the hometown of Ray Rice, and where I live, he’s a hero. My wife just said this morning, ‘What do we do with the helmet?’ We have this autographed Ray Rice helmet. I’ve always admired Ray Rice, but I think he’s a (expletive) coward. I really do. I just think he’s disgusting. I have no interest in him, my kids will have no interest in him, and if I’m the Baltimore Ravens, I want nothing to do with this guy.”

BRUCE PEARL: “I think it will be very difficult, given what we’ve seen, that he’s going to have an opportunity to come back. … If he doesn’t get back to the league, it sends a message that this conduct is inappropriate, it’s illegal, it’ll put you in jail, and the next guy who thinks about raising his hand to a woman, he’d better put that hand down, because he’s going to lose his right to play ball.”

“For me as a coach, who lied to the NCAA and didn’t tell the truth, and had a three-year show cause (suspension) for making the mistake of a lifetime  – something I own and am embarrassed about – I’m grateful that I was given a little bit of grace and I’m grateful that  I was given a second chance. This is a little tougher.”

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Concerning Wes Welker’s series of concussions:

LaVAR ARRINGTON: “I would say you need to think about this – three concussions. When I was playing, it was different because we didn’t have that information. But with the information that they have today, with everything that has come out and where we’re at with that knowledge, I would certainly say it’s something that you have to think about.”

JEFF PEARLMAN: “I know it’s all about winning and losing, but if I’m John Fox, I don’t want anything to do with this guy anymore. I do not want to be responsible for some guy 10-15 years down the road having no brain – lacking the ability to think.”

“I just don’t understand how the Denver Broncos can keep putting this guy out on the field, with concussion after concussion after concussion. If you’re a coach, is there a point when you say ‘I am not putting you out there, because I don’t want this to happen to you.’?

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CHRIS HERREN: “I bumped into a line of cocaine in a dorm room that took 14 years to walk away from.”

JIM ROME: “Did you ever play games high?”

CHRIS HERREN: “Never high. I’ve played them coming down. It was miserable.”

JIM ROME: “Was it a good thing being traded to Boston? It would seem like a great thing coming from Fall River.

CHRIS HERREN: “No, because I was familiar. That’s where I was born and raised, and I knew who to call if I needed (drugs). I fell into the feeling. I spent 20 bucks on a little yellow pill called oxycontin, and it turned into $25,000 a month. I tell kids all the time that I dreamed of playing for the Celtics – I didn’t dream of standing outside before the game trying to get oxy so I could be well enough to play in it.”

JIM ROME: “(In your first game in Boston), you’re out there (outside the arena) trying to find your dealer, and you can’t find him. What happened?”

CHRIS HERREN: “Panick. I was withdrawing somewhat before the game, and I knew that if I didn’t get it, I was going to struggle. So in a panic, I ran outside and grabbed it 10 minutes before game time. I got it into my system and was able to play.”

JIM ROME: “So you were high in that game?”

CHRIS HERREN: “Yeah. … At this point in my career, I couldn’t play unless I was high.”

JIM ROME: “How did you beat this?

CHRIS HERREN: “I went back (to rehab after the birth of my third child), and a staff member there said ‘Play dead. Call your wife, tell her you love her, tell her you’ll never call her again, and tell her to tell your kids that you died in a car accident. And just disappear.’ There were two sides of my heart. The good guy was saying ‘Play dead. Just cut them loose.’ The fighter, the athlete in me was saying ‘Come on man, fight for this.’ … I’ve been sober since those words.”

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JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME airs Tuesdays with encore airings all month long on SHOWTIME and SHOWTIME EXTREME® and is available on SHOWTIME ON DEMAND and SHOWTIME ANYTIME.

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The Man Behind Peyton Manning’s Recovery, Resurgence On Season Premiere Of 60 Minutes Sports



Premieres Tuesday, Sept. 2 at 10p ET/PT Only On SHOWTIME

150mph Electric Cars, a Controversial Poker Player, the Army-Navy Game, A Record-Setting Extreme Athlete and a Stampede of Brazilian Bull Riders Mark a New Season


NEW YORK (Aug. 27, 2014) SHOWTIME moves the sports edition of 60 MINUTES from Wednesday to Tuesday night on the premium network beginning in September, when 60 MINUTES SPORTS kicks off its third season with the inside story on Peyton Manning’s incredible comeback from neck surgery.  See Correspondent Jack Ford’s story featuring Manning, his brother Eli and Duke Football Head Coach David Cutcliffe, whose secret training Manning credits with saving his career, on the season premiere of 60 MINUTES SPORTS on its new night, Tuesday, Sept. 2 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT only on SHOWTIME.


Jack Ford and producer Rome Hartman take you behind-the-scenes for the making of this segment.

Throughout their NFL careers, Peyton and Eli, the New York Giants’ quarterback, have been privately coached by Cutcliffe – a relationship that goes back to their college days when the brothers both had him as a coach.  The private mini-camps Cutcliffe has run for them at Duke for several years took on a crucial role after Peyton’s nerve injury in 2012.  Ford’s story contains rare footage of those sessions along with Peyton’s most detailed comments about how Cutcliffe’s training enabled him to take the Broncos to the Super Bowl and be the NFL’s MVP again.  “I’ll be indebted to him forever,” says Peyton.

If anyone was ready for the challenge, it was Cutcliffe.  As Ford reports, at the same time he worked behind the scenes with Peyton Manning, he was in the midst of performing a miracle turnaround of the Blue Devil football team.  Duke had just one victory in the two years before he arrived as head coach in 2008; today they’re an emerging Atlantic Coast Conference powerhouse with 10 wins last season.  No Duke football team had ever won that many games.  Cutcliffe was the consensus college 2013 “Coach of the Year.”

The Tuesday, Sept. 2 premiere also features Correspondent Jeff Glor reporting on “Formula E” electric cars that race at 150mph and a peek into the underworld of bare knuckle boxing, in which Correspondent Armen Keteyian explores a secretive sport some call “human cockfighting.”

Coming up on future editions of 60 MINUTES SPORTS this season, Correspondent James Brown profiles Phil Ivey, one of poker’s biggest winners and one of its most controversial players; Correspondent Jack Ford reports on the iconic Army-Navy Game and the efforts to turn around an Army team that has lost the last 14 contests; Correspondent Sharyn Alfonsi profiles Mathias Giraud, the extreme skier and base jumper who keeps finding more records to break; and correspondent Bill Whitaker finds out there’s an awful lot of bull riding in Brazil – one reason why Brazilian riders are starting to dominate Americans’ favorite rodeo sport.

60 MINUTES SPORTS is produced by 60 MINUTES and is part of SHOWTIME Sports’ existing lineup of award-winning original programming, which includes INSIDE THE NFL, JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME, ALL ACCESS and live event series SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® and ShoBox: The New Generation.

60 MINUTES SPORTS is co-executive produced by CBS News Chairman Jeff Fager and 60 MINUTES Executive Editor Bill Owens and SHOWTIME Sports.

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inside-the-nfl-showtime Ed Reed, Current Chicago Bears Wide Receiver Brandon Marshall

And Boomer Esiason Join Phil Simms And Host Greg Gumbel

On INSIDE THE NFL As Weekly Series Moves To Tuesdays Beginning September 2

NEW YORK(August 14, 2014) Former 12-year NFL veteran safety and nine-time Pro Bowler Ed Reed, current Chicago Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall and Boomer Esiason join Phil Simms as analysts, along with new host Greg Gumbel, on INSIDE THE NFL when the series begins its seventh season on SHOWTIME on Tuesday, September 2.

The announcement was made today by Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President & General Manager, SHOWTIME Sports® and Sean McManus, Chairman, CBS Sports and Executive Producer, THE NFL ON CBS.

INSIDE THE NFL on SHOWTIME will move to Tuesday nights with the premiere on Tuesday, September 2 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.  The show, produced by CBS Sports and NFL Films, will air every Tuesday during the NFL season through February 4, 2015.  NFL Network will re-air the show on Wednesdays (9 p.m. ET) throughout the season.

“The additions of Greg as host, along with new analysts Boomer, Ed and Brandon, combined with Phil, follow along in the tradition of excellence that fans have come to expect from this show,” said McManus.  “With Ed just coming off the playing field and Brandon still on it, this show truly brings a unique perspective that is unseen on any other show.”

“We’ve assembled, perhaps, the most dynamic cast in this show’s long history,” said Espinoza. “Of course, the program will continue to deliver breath-taking highlights and exclusive features. And now, we are coupling the respected and accomplished personalities of Simms, Boomer and Greg Gumbel with a defensive perspective from Ed Reed and Brandon Marshall’s perspective directly from the field.  We are as excited as ever for the new season.”

Reed, a Super Bowl champion and nine-time Pro Bowl safety, takes on his first full-time role as an analyst after a 12-year career in the NFL.  Marshall, a five-time Pro Bowl receiver in nine seasons thus far, will trade his pads and cleats for a suit and microphone once a week in his first start as an analyst—serving as the first active NFL player analyst in the show’s 37-year history—while sports media veterans Esiason and Gumbel are joining INSIDE THE NFL for the first time. Simms will continue in his role that began when the series moved to SHOWTIME in 2008 while adding “CBS/Thursday Night Football” to his robust in-season schedule.

INSIDE THE NFL covers every game, every week, with trademark highlights from NFL Films, special, in-depth features and spirited debate on the hottest topics in the league.

In just seven seasons on SHOWTIME, INSIDE THE NFL has won seven Sports EMMY® Awards, including two for Outstanding Studio Show.  Past hosts of the storied program dating back to the 1970’s have included Chuck Bednarik, James Brown, Nick Buoniconti, Cris Carter, Cris Collinsworth, Bob Costas, Len Dawson, Jerry Glanville, Jimmy Johnson, Peter King, Dan Marino, and Warren Sapp.

INSIDE THE NFL is produced by CBS Sports and NFL Films. The executive producers are Sean McManus, Chairman, CBS Sports, Ross Ketover and Pat Kelleher of NFL Films.  Pete Radovich Jr., the Emmy Award-winning Creative Director for CBS Sports, serves as coordinating producer.

Horseracing’s Drug Problem: A 10 Out of 10, Says USADA.


Says He’s Ready to Step in if the Bill Passes in Congress to Put USADA in Charge

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NEW YORK (June 2, 2014)—The man who tackled Lance Armstrong and the drug problem in professional cycling says the use of performance enhancing drugs in American horse racing has reached a critical point.  Travis Tygart, who heads the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, has been approached by Congress and the racing industry to clean up the sport. On the eve of the Belmont Stakes, the third leg of thoroughbred racing’s famed Triple Crown, he speaks to Armen Keteyian for a story about drugs in horseracing on the next edition of 60 MINUTES SPORTS premiering Wed., June 4 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME.

Tygart says he has spoken to many people in thoroughbred racing who believe the proliferation of drugs has put the sport in serious jeopardy. “I think it’s down to the wire,” says Tygart. If the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act, now in Congress, becomes law, his agency will be ready to regulate and enforce drug use in racing, he says.  USADA did the same for the U.S. Olympic Team 14 years ago, says Tygart, so it can do it again. Back then, “We said ‘We’re going to set a plan…develop the rules… and then we’re going to build the capacity to robustly enforce those rules to insure that the rights of the clean competitors are upheld and the integrity of the competition is restored,”’ he tells Keteyian.

“I think you listen to the industry, [the drug problem] has got to be a 10 [on a scale of 10],” says Tygart.  Many worry it’s undermining the sport’s image, harming the breeding process and putting riders and horses at risk.  There is tremendous pressure to use drugs to win in a multi-billion-dollar business in which there is no national uniform code to control drug use nor a governing body or commissioner to rein it in, says Tygart. “The temptations are through the roof in this sport.”

The Water, Hay, Oats Alliance would welcome oversight from USADA.  WHOA was formed by people like Arthur Hancock III, whose family has bred thoroughbreds since the Civil War era and whose farm produced three Kentucky Derby winners.  The drugs commonly given to race horses to enhance performance is killing his sport, Hancock tells Keteyian.  “We love the horses. It’s bad for the breed, it’s bad for the fans,” he says.

Hancock and his wife, Staci, say drugs can make mediocre horses winners, whose records are then the basis for breeding them and creating a bloodline maybe more based on the drug than natural ability. The drugs lead to shorter careers, too. Hancock says horses that are ailing shouldn’t be put on a drug and made to run a mile as fast as they can go. “In the old days, the farm was the therapy…and then they’d go back [to racing].”

The use of drugs has helped to end many a horse’s career prematurely says Hancock.  “When I was a boy in 1950…you had an expectation that your horse was going to run 45 times in his lifetime…now, you know what it is?  Thirteen.”

Keteyian also speaks with Phillip Hanrahan who heads the 29,000-member National Horseman’s Benevolent and Protective Association. He says there isn’t a drug problem in his industry, pointing to 368,980 drug tests taken between 2009 and 2012 that 99.2 percent of the horses passed.  He says the industry does a good job of policing itself. “Could it be improved? Sure. But it’s not the Wild, Wild West picture that some would have you believe.”


NBA Player Rep on LeBron James: “He ain’t playing if Sterling is still an owner.” JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME Premieres Wednesday


This Month’s Edition of JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME® Premieres

Wednesday, May 14, at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME


LOS ANGELES (May 13, 2014) – NBA Players Association Vice President Roger Mason Jr., tells Jim Rome on this month’s edition of JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME that superstar LeBron James is prepared to lead an NBA player boycott of the 2014-15 season if the Donald Sterling ownership issue is not resolved by the start of next season.  JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME premieres this Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME.

“What if [Donald Sterling] is still there. I mean, he’s not going down without a fight. What if he’s still there when next season starts?” Rome asked Mason during a compelling Open Forum discussion.

“If it’s not handled by… the start of next season, I don’t see how we’re playing basketball,” Mason said. “I was just in the locker room with LeBron…  At the end of the day, you know we have leaders.  We have player reps, we’ve got executive committee members…  Leaders of the teams, they’re all saying the same thing, ‘If this man is still in place, we ain’t playing’.”

Rome followed up: “So your guy LeBron, you think he would not play if Sterling were still in there when the [next] season started?”

“I was just in the locker room three or four days ago. LeBron and I talked about it,” Mason said. “He ain’t playing if Sterling is still an owner.”

Rome asked about Sterling’s wife Shelly Sterling. “What if he’s not there, but his wife is,” Rome asked.

“No Sterling deserves to be an owner of that franchise any longer,” Mason said. “And I’ve gone down the line from LeBron to the other guys in the league that I’ve talked to and they all feel the same way. There’s no place for that family in the NBA.”

Also contributing to the must-see Open Forum segment are USC Professor and pop culture expert Todd Boyd and former 13-year NFL veteran Ephraim Salaam.

Also appearing on the episode are: Anaheim Angels outfielder Mike Trout, NASCAR’s Jeff Gordon, comedian D.L. Hughley, Baltimore Orioles outfielder Adam Jones, and former baseball great Darryl Strawberry.

JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME airs Wednesdays with encore airings all month long on SHOWTIME and SHOWTIME EXTREME® and is available on SHOWTIME ON DEMAND and SHOWTIME ANYTIME.

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Showtime Sports Wins Sports Emmy Awards For “All Access: Mayweather Vs. Canelo Epilogue” And “60 Minutes Sports – Great Falls”



(Best Edited Sports Event Coverage)


(Outstanding Long Feature)

Use this link to watch, share and embed the full Emmy award-winning episode of ALL ACCESS: Mayweather vs. Canelo Epilogue:


NEW YORK (May 7, 2014) – SHOWTIME received two Sports Emmy Awards Tuesday evening at the 35th Annual Sports Emmy ceremony in New York City for its sports programming.  “ALL ACCESS: Mayweather vs. Canelo” Epilogue won its first Emmy for Outstanding Edited Sports Event Coverage.  “60 MINUTES SPORTS” won its first Emmy for Outstanding Long Feature in its inaugural season for the “Great Falls” segment.

SHOWTIME was nominated for eight Sports Emmy Awards in 2013, the most in network history. SHOWTIME has won 10 Sports Emmy Awards in network history.

About ALL ACCESS: Mayweather vs. Canelo Epilogue

Broadcast eleven days after the highest grossing fight in boxing history, “All Access: Mayweather vs. Canelo” Epilogue utilized original cinematography to capture not just the grandeur and excitement of fight night but also the intimate, unseen moments at home and in the locker rooms surrounding the event. The result was a rarely seen glimpse into the preparation, execution and aftermath of world championship boxing at the highest level.

About 60 MINUTES SPORTS – Great Falls

60 MINUTES SPORTS, a sports magazine from the producers of the critically-acclaimed 60 MINUTES, reported on extreme kayaking, the rush of the sport and its inherent dangers in a story about the Potomac’s Great Falls and the tragic death of Shannon Christy, one of extreme kayaking’s rising stars. The segment, reported by David Martin, included an interview with Christy and footage of the rescue attempt and recovery of her body.

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Daniel Jacobs To Fill In For Paul Malignaggi on Saturday’s SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING

showtime-sportsMalignaggi Taking Precaution Following Last Week’s Loss;

Says He Will Be Ready For May 3 SHOWTIME PPV® Event

LOS ANGELES (April 24, 2014)—Middleweight contender Daniel Jacobs will serve as a guest analyst for the second straight week as SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING presents three world-class prizefights on Saturday, April 26, live at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT from StubHub Center in Los Angeles.

Jacobs will step in for critically acclaimed SHOWTIME boxing analyst Paulie Malignaggi, who is recovering from a tough knockout loss to IBF Welterweight World Champion Shawn Porter last week.  After the fight, Malignaggi was taken to a nearby hospital in Washington D.C.  He has since been released and is recovering comfortably at his home, but is opting to err on the side of caution for this week’s event in Los Angeles.

“I am feeling very good at this stage, but anytime you have any level of concussion, your best bet is to fully recover before doing virtually any activity,” said Malignaggi.  “There will be plenty of action on Saturday and the audience will be in good hands with Danny on the stick.  But make no mistake: I will not miss next week’s event in Las Vegas.  I have been looking forward to that fight card for some time.  I’ll be ready.”

The main event for Saturday’s tripleheader will pit interim WBA Welterweight World Champion Keith “One Time” Thurman against former world champion Julio “The Kidd” Diaz.  In the co-features, Lucas Matthysse returns from an eight-month layoff to face heavy-handed John Molina Jr., in a 10-round junior welterweight matchup and undefeated WBC Lightweight World Champion Omar Figueroa Jr., defends his title against Jerry Belmontes.  The telecast will air live, immediately following the premiere of Episode 2 of ALL ACCESS: Mayweather vs. Maidana, the most recent installment of the Emmy® Award-nominated SHOWTIME Sports® series that chronicles the dramatic lives of the world’s best prizefighters.

“I had a great time filling in for Paulie last week,” said Jacobs, who will join host Brian Kenny, Mauro Ranallo, Hall of Fame analyst Al Bernstein and award-winning reporter Jim Gray on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING.  “It was a tremendous honor to be part of that event and to show the fans a different side of myself.  I received terrific feedback, not only from SHOWTIME, but from the fans, my friends and family.  Obviously, Paulie’s welfare is my main concern but I know he will be back behind the mic soon.  In the meantime, I look forward to doing another great job at ringside.”

The 27-year-old Jacobs (27-1, 24 KOs), of Brooklyn, N.Y., is coming off a first-round TKO of Milton Nunez on March 15 on the SHOWTIME EXTREME® undercard of the Danny Garcia-Mauricio Herrera event in Puerto Rico.  The victory was Jacob’s fifth straight win in as many fights since returning to the ring after a courageous 19-month battle against cancer and partial paralysis.

The 6-foot-1 Jacobs, who is the fifth ranked middleweight contender by the IBF and sixth by the WBC, WBA and WBO, has  won seven in a row by knockout.

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SHOWTIME and Kobe Bryant Find Their Muse

showtime-sportsKOBE BRYANT’S MUSE – The New Original Feature-Length Documentary Captures a Never-Before-Seen Portrait of An Elite Athlete’s

Professional and Personal Journey

LOS ANGELES, CA. (April 17, 2014)  – As Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant prepares for his much-anticipated return to the NBA next season, SHOWTIME is set to air the original documentary film KOBE BRYANT’S MUSE, an in-depth look into the life, inspirations and challenges facing one of the most successful and complex figures in professional sports.  The feature-length documentary is directed by Gotham Chopra (Decoding Deepak, ESPN’s upcoming 30 For 30 film, The Little Master). The film is currently in production in Los Angeles and will air this fall on SHOWTIME.

KOBE BRYANT’S MUSE will offer viewers a deep character portrait of a professional athlete who has transcended his sport to become a culture-moving personality,” said Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President and General Manager, SHOWTIME Sports®.  “We are thrilled that Kobe has given us this unprecedented access, which will allow our viewers to witness such a challenging period of time in the life of one of the NBA’s greatest players.”

“As a lifelong Boston Celtics fan, never did I imagine I would collaborate with Laker great Kobe Bryant,” said Gotham Chopra.   “Kobe’s quest for greatness transcends rivalries and I’m excited by his and SHOWTIME’s willingness to go down this rabbit hole together.  I’m confident audiences will be intrigued by what comes out the other side.”

At this critical juncture in his career, viewers will watch as Bryant attempts to cement his legacy, opening a window into the mind of an elite athlete still motivated to be the best, but also contemplating life after sports. KOBE BRYANT’S MUSE will feature the successes and challenges that have shaped Bryant’s professional life as well as inform audiences who are unaware of the lesser-known aspects of his career, while offering new insights to those who have followed him closely.

The documentary will examine Bryant’s storied basketball career, detailing his mentorships, allies and rivalries that have helped shape his 18-year tenure in the NBA.  The ultimate competitor for nearly two decades, a 16-time All-Star and winner of five NBA championships, Bryant dominated professional basketball until a series of recent injuries threatened to abridge his career.  With unbridled access to his daily experience, the film will reveal what makes Bryant tick and the life-long inspirations that have motivated him.

Kobe Bryant’s Muse is executive produced by Kobe Bryant and Gotham Chopra in association with Mamba Media.

Jeanie Buss Gives Her Thoughts On The Lakers’ Season And More On The Next Edition Of Jim Rome On Showtime®

showtime-sports“Disappointment. Awful. It’s not Laker-esque at all.”

-Jeanie Buss on the Lakers’ Season




This Month’s Edition of JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME Premieres

Wednesday, April 9, at 9 p.m. ET/PT



LOS ANGELES (April 9, 2014) – Los Angeles Lakers President Jeanie Buss joins this month’s edition of JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME and gives her take on the Lakers’ season, discusses her fiancé Phil Jackson’s new job with the New York Knicks and says she doesn’t think NBA teams are intentionally tanking. The episode premieres this Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME®.

Rome also is joined in The Forum by former NBA star Raja Bell, NFL super-agent Drew Rosenhaus and author Paul Solotaroff, who discuss the standing ovation given to Ryan Braun, the Philadelphia Eagles cutting star DeSean Jackson, and more of today’s hottest sports topics. Plus, former No. 1 ranked tennis player Andre Agassi talks with Rome about his autobiography. And, Rome goes one-on-one with 2012 Masters champion Bubba Watson, San Antonio Spurs forward Manu Ginobili and Boston Red Sox star Jonny Gomes.

JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME premieres the second Wednesday of every month with multiple replays each week on SHOWTIME and SHOWTIME EXTREME®.  The program is available at SHOWTIME ON DEMAND® and SHOWTIME ANYTIME®.

Following are excerpts from this week’s Jim Rome on SHOWTIME:

ROME: “If could use one word to describe this season, what would it be?”

JEANIE BUSS: “Disappointment. Awful. It’s not Laker-esque at all.”

ROME: “You are engaged to Phil Jackson. Did he at any point say, ‘I want to get back in. I want something to do.’ Did he come to you and say, ‘I would like to have an official job with the Lakers?’ ”

BUSS: “What was important to him was that he wants to see my family be successful. And however he can help he wanted to help. I am in charge of the Lakers. I’ve empowered Mitch Kupchak and my brother Jim Buss to put together the best team they can. There was no role for Phil Jackson in this organization and that is why he’s not here.”

ROME: “How is there not a role for Phil Jackson within that organization?”

BUSS: “Phil wanted to work again. I could have hired him to work in the marketing department or possibly season-ticket sales, but I don’t think he would have been very good at it (laughter). The basketball side was covered and Phil wanted to influence an organization and I feel he got the second-best job in the NBA working with the New York Knicks.”

JIM ROME: “Is there tanking going on in the league?”

JEANIE BUSS: “I think it’s disappointing going out and telling players not to play. From what I know, I would say no. I think it’s impossible.”


ROME: “How could the Milwaukee fans give Ryan Braun a standing ovation? Don’t you earn a standing ovation?”

RAJA BELL: “I think they should be ashamed of themselves for cheering for him like that. Not for the PED use. What he did after with the lying and then throwing innocent people under the bus and ruining their lives. That’s the despicable thing.  So you can’t cheer for him stand-ovation wise.”

ROME: “In regards to the Eagles cutting DeSean Jackson, if it wasn’t about the money and gang-ties had something to do with it, is that worth cutting someone over?”

PAUL SOLOTAROFF: “If you are mob-deep in the NFL everyone from the director of team security on down to the guy who wipes the balls knows it.  Aaron Hernandez got into a big white suburban with three stone-cold bloods every Sunday and trailed huge clouds of ganja.  Everybody in that clubhouse knew.  And nothing stays in-house in an NFL clubhouse.”


ROME: “What was your reaction when you heard Tiger Woods had to withdraw from the Masters?”

BUBBA WATSON: “Sad. For the game of golf, he’s the icon. He’s the best player in the world. You want him to be here. You want the world to see him. And I want to play with the best … We all want to beat Tiger Woods if we can.”

ROME: “You describe yourself as a new-age redneck. What is that?”

WATSON: “I don’t drink. I’ve never been drunk. I don’t dip. Don’t smoke. I don’t hang out in bars and I don’t like country music. I don’t hunt. I’ll fish, but I don’t touch the fish. My mom’s from the country, so I guess I got a little country in me.”

ROME: “Golf Digest put Paulina Gretzky on the cover and the LPGA wanted to know why she made the cover, and not one of their players. Do you have a problem with that?”

WATSON: “I don’t have a problem with it. She’s a great role model for kids. She a model and has a great family sports heritage. But I think for the magazine they could have gone to a younger girl who’s actually playing the game like Lexi Thompson who just won a major. The magazine I think went the wrong way with that. For the magazine I don’t think it’s the way to go.”

*  *  *

TOM BRADY ON UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN’S GREG HARDEN: “Without a doubt…I’m forever grateful to him.” – On The Next Edition Of “60 MINUTES SPORTS” on SHOWTIME®

60-Minutes-Sports-showtimeMeet an Unsung Coach Who has Been Building Better Athletes at University of Michigan

for 28 Years Through Their Hearts and Minds

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The University of Michigan sports department has a secret weapon.  Greg Harden has been quietly developing the hearts and minds of players at the university as a counselor for nearly three decades. By building better people, Harden made better athletes, helping to mold its Division 1 program into one of the most successful in America.   Just ask three-time Super Bowl Champion quarterback Tom Brady or Heisman Trophy winner Desmond Howard, some of the famous alums who say Harden made a crucial difference in their careers.  Correspondent James Brown profiles Harden for the next edition of 60 MINUTES SPORTS premiering Wed. March 5 at 9 p.m. ET/PT only on SHOWTIME.

Brady came to Harden as a frustrated junior backup quarterback who knew he needed something extra to become the starter.  Brady says Harden kicked him into a higher gear mentally. “Your whole life, people have always told you how great you are as an athlete…he’s probably the first person in your life that says, ‘Well, you don’t deserve to really be on the field.’”  Brady says, in fact, he wasn’t the best athlete around, but there was something else Harden made him tap into.

“I found I could get the edge from my competitiveness and through my drive and work ethic and those were some of the things Greg really said. ‘This is what your strengths are. Let them be your strengths,’” Brady says Harden told him.  “Without a doubt…I’m forever grateful to him,” the superstar says.

Says Harden, “[Brady] still can’t run…but you can’t catch him,” he says laughing. “It doesn’t matter. What matters is his heart and his mind. You can’t measure that boy’s heart…his mind.”

Howard says he owes his famous trophy to Harden. “If Greg Harden is not at the University of Michigan in the late 80s, I don’t win the Heisman,” says the former All-Pro wide receiver and Super Bowl XXXI MVP.  He was thinking of leaving Michigan but Harden, he says, straightened him out.

Harden told the young player he was dreaming.  “I had to get him to stop fantasizing about being a star and to turn into a student involved in athletics who would allow himself to be coachable.”

Harden could give advice not just because he had a degree in social work and had been a drug and alcohol counselor, but because he had been in their shoes.  He was recruited out of high school to Michigan as a track star with a chip on his shoulder.  “The coaches weren’t too happy with me,” he tells Brown.  “I was that guy who didn’t have a clue who thought he knew everything.”  He dropped out to support his pregnant girlfriend and drifted for a few years before turning his life around by returning to Michigan to get his degree.  He lived and learned the lessons he has been imparting to athletes all these years.  “I’ll tell them that if you want to be the best, you’ve got to decide with or without [sports] …your life is going to be amazing. Then, all of a sudden, your sport falls into a context.”


The Extreme Sport Jones Calls His Art, Most Would Say is a Near Death Experience

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     An 800-ft. fall down a Himalayan Peak was all in a day’s work for legendary snowboarder Jeremy Jones.  Called big mountain free riding, it’s a job he loves, and it’s brought him to five continents where he’s hiked through chest high snow and hurricane force winds, for days or weeks, to get to peaks where even helicopters can’t go.  All to make his “art” or his “line” on an untouched slope with a vertical drop so steep it practically looks like a wall of snow.  Correspondent Sharyn Alfonsi profiles this snowboarding pioneer and goes on a few adventures with him on the next edition of 60 MINTUES SPORTS premiering Wed., March 5 at 9 p.m. ET/PT only on SHOWTIME.

The fall in the Himalayas was part of the final film in a trilogy about Jones’s snowboarding feats.  Called “Higher,” it will be released in September, but 60 MINUTES SPORTS got a sneak peak. The trek to Nepal meant training for weeks to make the arduous expedition in the high altitude, in this case over 21,000 feet up.

Jones watched the long fall for the first time with Alfonsi.  “I knew there were no rocks to worry about below me. I just kept my board in front of me and it’s kind of like going down white water rapids at this point,” he nonchalantly tells Alfonsi.  A few days later he would climb back up the mountain, even further, to the summit of the peak that has no name on a map but that Jones calls Shangri-la.  This time he would ride it down. “This is probably the most serious line I’ve ever tried to snowboard,” says Jones.

As dangerous as it looks, Jones takes every precaution he can. He has turned around after reaching peaks due to factors like weather or a high chance of an avalanche. He also does his best to avoid lethal terrain.  “In certain spots on certain mountains that’s what we call a ‘no fall zone’ and a no fall zone means if you fall you’ll die,” says Jones.

For almost 20 years, Jones, 39, has been on the leading edge of the sport that took off with helicopters launching skiers and boarders to remote mountains in Alaska, often to make spectacular films.  Over the last five years, he began going where the helicopters couldn’t as an added challenge. “I hold the mountains that I hike compared to the mountains that I’ve taken a helicopter to very different[ly]. It’s much more personal. These mountains are deeply etched in my DNA at this point,” says Jones.  The new tack can at times put Jones in dangerous situations, but he says he’s not a crazy daredevil. “When I get it figured out and the time’s right, then yes, I will take it to the edge and ride a very fine line,” he tells Alfonsi, “But…only when the stars have aligned perfectly.”

Jones’ evolution as one of the greatest snowboarders ever was directly influenced by his two older brothers, Todd and Steve, who were extreme skiers and founders of the Jackson Hole, WY based film business “Teton Gravity Research.”  Jones has travelled the world to find the perfect slopes and been in 18 Teton Gravity Research films along the way, but Jackson Hole is still one of his favorite places to ride.   Visiting Jones and his brothers in Jackson, Alfonsi and 60 MINUTES SPORTS cameras watched him and his brothers tackle “Corbet’s Couloir,” often called “America’s scariest ski slope.”  Jones and his older brother Todd descend the shoot that looks more like a cliff than a slope.  Says Jeremy Jones, “Some of the best days…moments of my life [are] with these guys right next to me…that’s the coolest part of what we do.”