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Paul Daugherty Defends Question to Naomi Osaka On Tony Kornheiser Show

“For Daugherty, it was not a question that he hasn’t asked before to a professional athlete as he mentioned he once asked the very same thing to Pete Sampras.”

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Over at The Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati, Ohio this week, the main storyline was Naomi Osaka doing her first press conference since the French Open. The world’s number two tennis player on the WTA Tour was asked a question by Paul Daugherty of the Cincinnati Enquirer that has been criticized by some. 

Here is video from the press conference earlier this week in case you missed it courtesy of The Guardian:

Daugherty was on The Tony Kornehiser Show this week in what is a rare interview for him about the topic. The first question Kornheiser asked him was why he wanted to write about Osaka, who has been one of the lead advocates for mental health and social justice, and the origin of how he came up with the question he asked her that has drawn backlash: 

“The obvious focus of my question was how do you balance the fact that you are not especially comfortable in the press conference setting nor dealing with media generally with the fact that you have an incredibly large platform from which to spread your ideas not only about anything you want to sell…but also she has an acute social conscience,” Dauerghty said. “How do you reconcile the two being media shy but also needing and using and having people handle you push your multiple platforms/agendas? Logical question as far as I am concerned.”

For Daugherty, it was not a question that he hasn’t asked before to a professional athlete as he mentioned he once asked the very same thing to Pete Sampras. In fact, he was so pleased with how Osaka answered his question that he did something in his column that he rarely ever does.

“After a while, she asked me to repeat the question twice. She gave a very thoughtful answer. It was such a good answer, Tony, that I just quoted her verbatim in the column, which is something I almost never do. I thought her answer made her a little more human to lots of people who aren’t familiar with her story, enlightened people as to why she felt the way she did. I thought it was great. She did not cry while giving that answer, she didn’t walk out of the press conference after giving that answer.”

 Some of the backlash from the interview came from Osaka’s agent, who said that Paul Daugherty was a bully for asking his question and he said if it was the other way around, legal action would have been taken.

“I was accused of bullying by her agent. Said it was appalling what I did, the question that I asked, and I was a big reason why athletes don’t like talking with the media. The guy basically libeled me Tony in a tweet. If I had written about an athlete what he wrote about me, we would be preparing to go to court and I would be the defendant in a lawsuit.”

In the end, Daugherty doesn’t believe athletes have a responsibility to talk to him and he is disappointed with the way he and the back and forth with Naomi Osaka have been portrayed.

“I’ve never said that athletes have any responsibility at all to talk to me. The only thing I don’t want them to do is complain about what I write if they don’t want to talk to me. Don’t complain after the fact if you didn’t talk to me the first go around. They don’t really owe me anything. I’m not confrontational, which is why the bullying thing was so-off base.”

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Doug Gottlieb On Praise For Pat Beverly: ‘What a Joke!’

“To be in the NBA and say things that are demonstrably false, outright mean, and oh by the way, obtuse to reality and turns people off to your sport.”

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Pat Beverley of the Minnesota Timberwolves may have used his appearances this week on ESPN to set up a potential career in media, but some just simply weren’t impressed.

You can count Doug Gottlieb among them. Gottlieb said Wednesday that Beverley’s takes on Suns guard Chris Paul and words for Matt Barnes regarding James Harden’s contract didn’t do him any favors for the future.

“Pat Beverley, if you’re going to die on a hill, James Harden’s hill is not the one to die on,” Gottlieb said. “In a week in which you have a chance to carve out a potential career for yourself which is as good, or greater than your NBA career. What a joke!”

Gottlieb added that Beverley also lost people completely “acting like the arrogant NBA athlete that so many assume that NBA athletes are.”

“To be in the NBA and say things that are demonstrably false, outright mean, and oh by the way, obtuse to reality and turns people off to your sport,” he said. “Congratulations, hell of a week and you’re only in day two.”

While Beverley may not have Gottlieb singing his praises as an analyst, the T-Wolves journeyman did get the attention of Barstool Sports president Dave Portnoy. Portnoy said if Beverley wanted to do a podcast for the company, he would give him a blank check and hire him no questions asked.

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Mick Hubert to Retire After 33 Years As Voice Of Florida Gators

“This wasn’t the end of a five-year plan. I don’t know if I can explain how I knew, but I knew.”

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After more than three decades and more than 2,500 games called in Gainesville, Mick Hubert is retiring as the voice of the Florida Gators.

Hubert, 68, will call it a career after the Florida baseball team concludes its regular season this weekend.

Hubert, who’s called numerous Gators national championships across multiple sports in his tenure, said he had been thinking about retiring but finally had peace about it to make the decision.

“This wasn’t the end of a five-year plan. I don’t know if I can explain how I knew, but I knew,” he said. “I had been considering this for a little while. I just had to do some praying about it and enjoy every game.”

The longtime broadcaster is a 2019 inductee into the Florida Sports Hall of Fame.

Hubert said he poured his heart and soul into broadcasts and that hopefully fans recognized that.

“I hope they heard the enthusiasm, and the credibility is important to me,” he said. “You need to be factual and credible, but you need to be enthusiastic. That’s what I always felt. I always wanted to take my audience on a roller-coaster ride of emotions. I also wanted to give them enough information so they could paint that picture in their mind.”

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Reporter Tells Kevin & Query About NBA Draft Lottery Security Measures

“By the time you’re watching the production on ESPN for the lottery, we already know.”

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The NBA Draft is coming up towards the end of June, and the top half of the draft order was set this week in the NBA Draft Lottery.

The lottery adds a level of excitement to the mix because you never know if the team with the best odds for the number one pick will actually get it.

But it’s a whole process that actually unfolds well before it airs on ESPN. Pacers reporter Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files told Kevin Bowen and Jake Query on 107.5 The Fan in Indianapolis what it was like to have access to the lottery.

“By the time you’re watching the production on ESPN for the lottery, we already know,” he said. “It’s already happened. But we’re locked down, sequestered in a room, a ballroom, can’t leave.”

What was even more interesting to Agness was the fact that even people representing lottery teams were under an embargo until the results aired on TV.

“We had all that good info, but the person that won the lottery for instance couldn’t call and celebrate with their people,” Agness said. “None of us in the room could tweet it out because none of us had our devices.”

Agness added that the league had contingency plans in case the lottery drum failed, if the same team had its ping pong ball drawn, and just about every other scenario you could think of. He said he was very impressed with how the NBA did things.

“It was kind of cool to see how well-run everything was in the end,” he said.

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