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Sports classics worth binging on while staying at home: Ballers

Sports classics worth binging on while staying at home: Ballers

With many spending much more time at home than usual, we at NBC Sports Washington decided it was a good time to catch up on sports movies and television shows that some of us have somehow missed. DC Sports Live's Nick Ashooh has a recomendation that should keep you entertained : HBO's Ballers, which premiered in 2015 and just ended its run last year after five seasons. 

I get it, you are already restless. We all are. Even the most passionate sports fan probably did not really realize how much they loved sports until nothing was available.  

We’re living in a world where everything feels turned upside down at the moment and we need some relief. 

So, with no live sports for the foreseeable future, let’s try and find a silver lining. 

The one thing we can appreciate during this whole coronavirus crisis is we have endless amounts of content to binge, and there’s more than enough on-demand to help keep you from getting so desperate that you find yourself learning how to make a quiche.  

If you haven’t seen Ballers on HBO, get on it. This is the closest thing we’ve had to Playmakers, and it’s five seasons that find a way to incorporate just about everything going on in real life with the NFL. It’s a sports dramedy, so you get that mix of sarcasm and actual serious real-life conflict mixed in.  

Plus I have a rule -- anything that has Dwayne Johnson in it is worth your time. 

The Rock plays Spencer Strasmore, a recently retired NFL star who wants to prove he can make it in the financial world of sports, along with his friend turned business partner Joe Krutel (Rob Corddry). With guest appearances from real athletes (like former Raven Terrell Suggs), the battle for NFL labor peace, diva receivers, and boat parties that get a little too crazy (right Vikings?). If it’s happened in the football world, you’re likely seeing Ballers' own spin on it in an episode or two. 

I’m not saying this is the greatest show every made by any stretch, but it’s a fun ride.. It gives you an off-the-field perspective on pro sports, but doesn’t get so slow that you find your eyes glazing over. Plus, The Rock’s on-screen chemistry and friendship with Corddry is ever evolving as the seasons progress. 

Make sure to watch it all in order though. Don’t do that whole skipping seasons bit. Season three has a ton of meat on it, from the pitch to move the Raiders to Vegas, to a fake “Jerry Jones” who just so happens to be played by Christopher McDonald (Shooter McGavin), who they call “Boss Man”. Honestly, the best episode might be the second of season three. Vernon Littlefield, who’s on his way to a massive contract with the Cowboys, gets caught up promoting a weed business. “Boss man” is furious, and all you can think of is Jerry Jones being in this exact situation.  

Spencer also finds his way into driving a monster truck to convince some very rich people that he’s cool. And then he decides to tell the entire crowd after he crashes that he wants to bring the NFL to Vegas. Seriously, it’s a lot to take in. 

If you’re looking for a fun watch, that’s easy to binge -- something we all want right now -- then Ballers needs to be on your list. We want live sports back as soon as safely possible, but for the time being, any way to supplement that need is a welcome distraction.

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Everything that happened in LoveCast episode one

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LoveCast

Everything that happened in LoveCast episode one

LoveCast Episode One

If you already binge-watched Love is Blind, are anxiously awaiting the next season of The Bachelor, or miss watching awkward first dates from afar, look no further. 

Two D.C.-based companies, CarpeDM and District IRL, have teamed up to give us the quarantine love stories we deserve. 

LoveCast is an interactive dating experience where the audience is just as involved in the dating process. 

The audience has a chance to play matchmaker with 10 singles, ask questions throughout the live date and decide who should be matched up for each FaceTime hangout.  

Ready to meet the singles looking for love? Each participant was asked to make an intro video so we could find them a match.

Not only does the audience get to watch each date, but they get to interview the contestants immediately after...and yes, it is as awkward as it sounds. 

Date One: Deven and Reza

Deven and Reza seem like really nice people. He can't stop talking about Olive Garden and she is politely laughing along.

They have similar theories about Tiger King and who may have killed Carole Baskin's husband. 

Oh, and they talked more about unlimited soup, salad, and breadsticks. 

Note: Not that I am in a position to give dating advice, but I wouldn't bring up Olive Garden more than once on a first date. 

Will there be another date according to them: yes
Do I see a connection: no

Date Two: Dawn and Pasha

If you had any doubts about two strangers falling in love on an online dating show, watch this date. These two have sparks flying all over the place. 

The only red flag of this date might be their age difference. Dawn is 34 and Pasha is 28.

Oh no, this is Jessica and Mark from Love is Blind all over again. Or, maybe you are thinking that a six-year age difference is no big deal. 

Whichever thought your mind went to, you're right. 

Will there be another date according to them: yes
Do I see a connection: YES

Date Three: Karis and Evan

Have you ever watched two people make small talk for just a bit too long? That is what it felt like watching this date. There was nothing wrong with the date... except Evan did say that Karis reminded him of his mother.

Note: Generally speaking, women don't love being compared to your mother on the first date. But again, who am I to give advice.

Will there be another date according to them: maybe
Do I see a connection: nope

Date Four: Jorge and Matt

There was a lot of personality on this date... like a lot. These two did more talking over each other than actually talking. 

Will there be another date according to them: no
Do I see a connection: NO

Date Five: Matt and Jonathan 

Matt is back with another date. (He must be Mr. Popular.) 

In my opinion, this date went much better than his date with Jorge. Matt and Jonathan are goofing around and seem to click well.

Note: Jonathan is a former NBA dancer with the Wizards so we are rooting for our #DCFamily

However, when Jonathan found out that Matt went on a date with someone else he didn't take it very well. I think he was half-joking around and half angry. 

Matt saw the not-so-fun part of being the bachelor! 


Will there be another date according to them: We are left on a cliffhanger. We don't know how Jonathan actually feels.
Do I see a connection: If they can work past this other date thing, yes!


If after reading this, you decide that you want to be on the next episode sign up here by April 12th. 

If after reading this, you decide that you want to watch and participle in the next episode, tune in on YouTube on April 26th. 

In The Loop: Drew Brees' son's request for Steph Curry, Ilya Kovalchuk's workout

In The Loop: Drew Brees' son's request for Steph Curry, Ilya Kovalchuk's workout

First up, Drew Brees' son Callen had his dad film him impersonating his idol's Steph Curry's game-winning shots and he nailed it. He also asked in the video that if he made the shot if Curry would send him a jersey. If you need us, we'll be waiting patiently for Curry's response.

Next up, what do YOU do in between your workout sets? Well if your Washington Capitals winger Ilya Kovalchuk, you have a dance party of course?

Lastly, Vancouver Canucks winger Antoine Roussel's son Teddy takes no days off when it comes to wanting to follow in his father's footsteps one day. This is how you do #HockeyAtHome.