Monthly Archives: January 2009

If You’re at a SuperBowl Charity Event, Don’t Snub the Writer; The Callaway Golf Foundation Challenge You Wont Get Snubbed At

If You’re at a SuperBowl Charity Event, Don’t Snub the Writer; The Callaway Golf Foundation Challenge You Wont Get Snubbed At

Glad I’m not the only one…as you know, I’ve been to a ton of charity events, mixing and mingling with the athlebrities and celebs who donate-yes donate- their time to raise awareness. From Charles Barkley to Drew Brees to Sammy Jackson to Kevin Costner To Terry Crews…I’ve seen these guys front and center at various charity events, signing autographs and interacting with fans while thanking them for ‘coming out’ to the event and ‘supporting the ‘cause’…not to sound like a broken record-but sometimes it’s difficult to know who’s in it for the PR and who’s in it for love. And oddly enough, I feel a bit vindicated in regards to my post yesterday (although I shouldn’t really) after reading this article regarding the Par and Poker Charity event in Florida. Last year, celebrity Golf Magazine named Par and Poker as one of the top celebrity golf events. Awesome. But have they ever been to this event? Just wondering, because I’ve been to about 30 different celebrity golf events that have never gotten a peep of bad press due to their invited celebrity talent…so, Par and Poker, aside from the free publicity I gave you without so much as a thank you, perhaps you best recheck your ‘celebrity talent’…because yes-one bad apple can spoil the entire event…and the apple I speak of is Lawrence Taylor.

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Par and Poker review written by Erica Pitzi, Tamp Bay 10 News:
One of the biggest names there is also arguably the NFL’s greatest defensive player of all time: Lawrence Taylor. Standing what seemed to be seven feet tall, ‘LT’ dwarfed nearly everything and everyone around him. (Although the dozens of fans hoping for an autograph couldn’t get any closer than the thirty feet a yellow rope allowed.) On the outside, he looked like a pretty intimidating fellow. He was warming up when I walked up to ask for an interview and without looking up, he said, “Nope, I’m done,” and he lit a large cigar. Too concerned with his golf game I guess, even though he was hitting balls in flip-flops. I stuck around for a minute to try and change his mind and with a huff Taylor said, “Fine. You get two questions, that’s it.” I asked my first question on how he felt about contributing to local charities through the tournament. Taylor told me he “wasn’t here for any charity.” He said there are always charity events going on and he doesn’t do them just for the charities. Instead, he told me he came to this charity tournament only for his friend, fellow football star (and charity tournament founder) Seth Joyner. “This charity is strong to his heart. I respect him, I like him. So, I support his charity,” said Taylor. (Full article here).


Callaway Golf Foundation Challenge

This Monday, if you’re on the west coast and don’t want to be snubbed by anyone, I highly recommend Callaway’s Golf Foundation Challenge. The event benefits the cancer research initiative of the (EIF) Entertainment Industry Foundation…which also does amazing things such as lure companies like Philosophy to donate 100% of their proceeds (from certain products) to the cause.

The Callaway Golf Foundation Challenge, a pro-celebrity charity golf tournament benefiting the cancer research initiatives of the EIF is set to tee off this Monday, in the Pacific Palisades neighborhood of Los Angeles. This fundraising event pairs leading professional golfers with celebrated actors, chief business leaders and entertainment industry executives for a round of golf in a “Modified Best Ball” tournament format. During the event, amateur golfers will have an opportunity to work on their technique at the Johnny Miller Skills Clinic. Proceeds will benefit EIF’s Cancer Research Programs to fast-track scientific research to support the discovery of new prevention tests and improved, non-toxic therapies for ovarian, breast, colon and prostate cancers.

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Celebrities set to participate and who I’ve never heard of snubbing a writer covering a charity event before include: Mark Wahlberg, Ray Romano, Gabriel Aubry, George Lopez, Tim Allen, James Caan, Kevin McKidd, Joe Pesci, Kevin Nealon, Peter Gallagher, Michael Chiklis, Josh Kelley, Don Cheadle, Jack Wagner, Matthew Lillard, Tom Dreesen, Jason Sehorn, Andy Richter, Flex Alexander, Johnny Mathis, CS Lee, Joel Gretsch, Joe Mantegna, Kevin Sorbo, and more. Professional Golfers set to participate include: Rocco Mediate, Johnny Miller, Gary Player, Leta Lindley, Roger Cleveland, Nicholas Thompson, Stuart Appleby, Vicky Hurst, Notah Begay III, Fredrik Jacobsen, Mark Brooks, and more.

As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Football Charities Ain’t Got Nothing on Futbol Charities

Football Charities Ain’t Got Nothing on Futbol (Soccer) Charities
Go ahead…enjoy the SuperBowl. Yes, there are tons of charity related NFL par-tays going on…but to me, most seem a bit insincere and more geared towards great ‘photo-ops.’ Of course there are exceptions, however, my (football) SuperBowl isn’t about helmets and hot-spots, it’s about voodoo, balls that unify, kids, and some mighty-mighty-fine men.

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One of the greatest things about soccer is the global culture that surrounds it. While most of us dislike hooligans, their absence would leave a gaping hole in the stadiums and a lot of ‘police’ outta jobs. Make shift hooligan jails are a staple at World Cup qualifiers and games, so I was really, really bummed to hear RadioShack has bowed out of sponsoring a Mexican newspapers promotion which would have undoubtedly filled a few hooligan-tanks to capacity when they figured out it didn’t work…Mexico is set to play their World Cup Qualifier against the U.S. on February 11…Mexico has not beaten the U.S. on American soil in 10 years (and they wont do it anytime soon), so…an advertisement in the sports daily ‘Record’ invited fans to clip coupons and redeem them at their local Radio Shack store for a voodoo-doll likeness of a U.S. player. The hope was that a little black magic might help Mexico break a decade of futility on the road versus its northern neighbor. (AP photo) An illustration showed a pair of scissors slicing off the leg of a doll in a U.S. jersey; the doll grimaced in pain with its arms covered in bruises, as stuffing leaked from its No. 10 jersey, stuck with pushpins. The newspaper was hoping that soccer fans would watch the match and “apply punishments to our rivals,” giving Mexico an edge to end a decade of winless play versus the Americans on U.S. soil. “Help end the losing streak so Mexico advances,” the ad read.

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If voodoo did work the way I’d like it too, I would win the lottery. No, I wouldn’t buy myself a house, or a new car…wouldn’t dare purchase a Prada, pair Jimmy Choo’s or any other pricey luxury good to make myself feel worthy…the first thing I would do? Join the Great Football Give Away…last November, a group of volunteers traveled to some of the most rural parts of Uganda and hand delivered over 3,000 soccer balls and netballs to the kids. And who says money can’t buy love? The organization is teaming up with Alive and Kicking to buy their Zambian made balls which have aids and malaria awareness messages printed on them…they’re using them to spread awareness about malaria-which is the number one killer in the country…And here’s where my lotto winnings would come into play…the Great Football Giveaway is looking for volunteers to organize and run future projects. If you can take a 4-6 month career break, they’ll help you with all the details-including fundraising, project management, putting a team together and hand-delivering the balls yourself to kids in some of the poorest countries of the world…I want to do this BAD so if anyone out there wants my beach front house for four-to-six months while paying for me to travel to Africa and pass out soccer balls to the kids, let me know. (And yes, I’m dead serious.)

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Another one of my favorite charity organizations, Right To Play, earned a massive donation from Zdano Chara (Boston Bruins) after winning the NHL’s Hardest Shot Competition at the All Star Weekend in Montreal on January 24th…the mighty fine beast won the competition with an All-Star Record of 105.4MPH and then promptly donated his winnings- $24,000- to Right To Play…too bad the IOC can’t think out side the box…(Wow, Delinda is having a flashback to all the hate-emails I got after ripping the IOC a new one last year…hope ya’all paying attention now.)

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Excluding the athlete-founded, athlete-driven Right To Play from the Athlete’s Village is a firm step backward for the Olympic movement. Right to Play is a humanitarian organization that uses sport to teach children about teamwork, fair play, conflict resolution, self-esteem, communication, commitment, respect and integrity. We firmly believe that this organization improves the lives of children by strengthening their vulnerable communities with the best practices of sport and play. And it creates opportunities to promote development, health and peace. I believe this act of exclusion violates the fundamental values of the Olympic movement.” Adam Kreek, Olympic Rowing Gold Medalist 2008, London, Ont.

What makes me really, really sad-is that this incredibly moving and poignant video has been posted on YouTube for over a year and has only been viewed 3,225 times. What a sad commentary on society…in any case, we may be able to help change that by coming up with a catchy moniker to grab some media attention for them. RTP is running a competition to highlight the studly attempt of a student by the name of Duncan Drew, who will try to run 30 MARATHONS IN THIRTY DAYS this August to benefit Right To Play. This is a world record attempt and will be receiving a lot of media attention…so help ‘em out by coming up with a catchy phrase to garner as much attention as possible for this event. The more support Duncan gets, the happier the disadvantaged children in Africa, Asia and the Middle East will be. What should they call it?

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As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Charity Poker Events Hosted by Harman

Charity Poker Events Hosted by Harman

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As I was driving back from LA last weekend, a friend of mine said “Jennifer who” after I mentioned Harman. For those out of the poker-loop, Jennifer Harman is the only woman to hold TWO WSOP bracelets, granted, I’m straying from my usual ‘hot pro athletes only’ on my blog because Jen is hosting two celebrity poker events that deserve some love and will-without question-attract some smoking hot babes from the sports world. The first ‘Charity Poker Tournament’ is on my birthday, March 11. Unfortunately, the proceeds wont go to me but will benefit The National Kidney Foundation. The fun starts at 11am at the Grand Sierra Resort, Reno, Nevada…joining her will be Howard Lederer, Andy Bloch, Lee Watkinson, Roy Winston, Lee Markholt, professional poker players, and celebrities to be announced soon…which my libido translates as dear god I hope Antonio Esfandiari and Phil Laak are there cuz I need a lil fix.

But perhaps the most anticipated event Harman’s hosting is her Charity Poker Tournament Benefiting the Nevada SPCA. (Friday, 17 April, 4 P.M., The Venetian, Las Vegas). Included in the schedule of events are a red carpet walk with celebrities and animal companions, a silent auction, media party, a raffle, and video presentation. All proceeds benefit the Nevada SPCA…It’s not expensive to play in the event-and last years’ winner entered the tournement after adopting a pet at the SPCA. Yeah-how cute is that? More details as they are released and by visiting GREASIE WHEELS.

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As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Celebrities Hit the Saddle Ranch for Charity

Celebrities Hit the Saddle Ranch for Charity
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Yesterday at the Saddle Ranch Chop House in LA, I hit up the ‘Babes on the Bull’ event to benefit P.L.A.Y. (www.playforkids.org). Tons of celebrities were there to support the cause-bringing friends and packing the place to capacity with the general public who were invited in for free. Aside from ‘LA’s hottest girls” riding the mechanical bull, live entertainment included fire dancers (Fire Groove) and a live auction. Items up for bids included amazing seats at a Lakers game, VIP booths at LA’s hippest spots, golf rounds, Dodgers tickets and others. The coolest thing about the auction was that everyone entering the Ranch received a hundred-bucks (voucher) to use towards auction items.

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Celebrities who leant their name and time to the cause included: Backstreet Boy A.J. McLean; AnnaLynne McCord (90210); sexy as hell and well coordinated D.J. D-Wrek (MTV’s Wild n Out); Warrant front man Jani Lane; Leonard Robinson (MTV Wild n Out); Claudia Jordon; David Faustino (Married w/Children, STAR-VING); Gladiator Romeo; Corey & Susie Feldman and a few others which I’ll get to in a minute.

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Ideally, I’d give you all the quotes I received but I’m gonna pare it down and give props and spankings to those who I feel deserve it. First up, gotta give massive props to (yeah) Corey Feldman and his wife Susie. Admittedly, I was a bit surprised to learn that Corey has been in 15 number 1 movies-all of which grossed over $50M each. Pretty impressive if you ask me. But what was even more impressive was his attitude-and that of his wife. They were the most energetic couple to walk the red carpet. Both wore huge smiles and possessed a sincere attitude towards ‘helping the kids’. The couple gets a five start rating from me in terms of charity work-especially after I overheard Susie say to one of the reporters “Didn’t we see you at the Autism event?

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Another one who gave me a few warm fuzzies was David Faustino. He spoke prior to the event; “I figured I’d come out today and support the cause” he said ”I live in the neighborhood, so you know, I give a little cheer, a little money, you know-promote, the whole package…I’ve ridden bulls here before but I’ve always been drunk, so if I do it would be my first sober attempt at riding the bull.” Interesting also to hear him speak about the contents of his iPod. “I listen to a lot of hip hop, but I don’t like the state of hip-hop necessarily today and I don’t listen to all of it but right now Kings of Leon I really like a lot.” The ‘Married with Children’ actor has a new show on the Internet called ‘STAR-VING’. “It’s a show that I created with my partners that is basically based on our own lives but we really exaggerate it to make fun of ourselves and turn the volume up to eleven,” he said, “We premiered on Crackle.com which is a Sony Pictures Television website. In the first few episodes I got the entire Married With Family cast reunion, it’s just a funny, funny show-very offensive, very rude and crude. Some people will love it and some people will hate it.” Be warned kids-its not for everyone but I found it funny, fresh and every bit as Anti-Entourage as Faustino has described it. As a fan of STAR-VING, I had to know what to expect in future episodes. “As you know we had the whole Married with Children cast on. Then we have Gilbert Godfry this season, we have a Growing Pains reunion with Alan Thicke and Jeremy Miller, Tracy Gold. And Ron Jeremy makes an appearance in an episode that’s been banned from YouTube.” The inquiring mind of a crazy redheaded blogger also had to know if Faustino was going to add any ‘washed-up’ athletic talent to the show. “How about Dennis Rodman” I asked. Faustino seemed to mull it over as he said “Really? You want Dennis Rodman? I’ll see what I can do for you”. Damn straight I do, Faustino, damn straight.

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And finally, on a funny note-but still saying thanks for lending your name to a good cause- was Shawn Stewart. As you know, I’m sometimes ‘celebrity’ challenged and had no idea that Shawn is Rod Stewarts son. After doing a bit of research, I couldn’t stop laughing. Granted, Shawn looked adorable in his hoodie and black eye but it wasn’t until I got home that I read that Stewart is “one of the stars of the A&E cable show Sons of Hollywood” and “was arrested” after a couple claimed “Stewart and others riding in a Rolls-Royce Phantom confronted them, then began punching and throwing bricks at them and their vehicle outside the April 22 party.” The wild-child was wearing some UFC gear, so I’m going to assume that the black eye is the product of a newfound hobby and not another run-in with the law?

There’s a link to all my photos on my events page.

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As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Catching Up with Dikembe Mutombo

Catching Up with Dikembe Mutombo

Don’t get excited-when I write ‘catching up with Mutombo’ I don’t mean I was blessed to meet the big guy-trust me, when I get an interview with him you’ll be the first to know…for now, we’ll have to settle for a great piece from SI.com. (The photo is from Vanity Fair 2007)

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Our finger wagging baller has been a very busy humanitarian-as I’ve said before, Deke is a humanitarian first and baller second…and once again, his efforts trump most. His Mutombo basketball kicks by Peak will be released soon-they include his No. 55 and a logo of his finger wagging back and forth. “By the time I retire, I want to see if I can have a shoe that can be sold in Africa that will allow every African child to have the shoes at the low cost of $15 to $20. So every parent can afford to put the shoes on the feet of their kids” he said. Dare I say ‘Yes You Can’? And with much better success than we’ve seen from other-ballers-and-their-low-cost-shoes-sold-at-places-that-go-out-of-business-and-you-don’t-back-it-up with-actions-anyway…but who am I to knock someone for trying…

Deke’s Biamba Marie Mutombo Hospital has been open for just over a year. “We have celebrated the first year of the opening Dec. 7,” he says, “We celebrate the first year when the world is crashing. Economically the world is crashing, spiritually the world is crashing. There is war all over the places right now, in Africa, in the Middle East, in Southeast Asia. We have to stay strong, to continue to do God’s work. Otherwise all of these people will perish.” An American consulting firm has told Mutombo that the hospital may become self-sustaining within another three years. This year, he says, the hospital is in need of $2 million to remain open. “If 100,000 people will each donate $20 to the Dikembe Mutombo Foundation, we will have $2 million to give treatment to women and children and the oldest people who are dying every day from malaria. There is a child dying in Africa every 35 seconds. Last year alone more than 2.5 million children died in Africa because of malaria. It costs maybe $10 to treat each person. So imagine when somebody is donating $20, he is already saving the life of a child at the hospital.”

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This is really a simple request from Deke…just 20 bucks. Yeah, the economy sucks. Yeah twenty bucks is a lot of money to some people. But maybe next time you fork over $4.20 for a ‘no-whip grande cap with extra bullshit’ you’ll think about the fact the your spare change can save a life…if not, then your on the wrong blog.


**Event Notice**

This Sunday at the Saddle Ranch Chophouse on Sunset Boulevard (Los Angeles), LA’s hottest women are going to ride the mechanical bull for charity. Yes I will be there-and no-while I am the queen of (a-hem) bull rider, I will not be riding the bull…I will be interviewing the celebrities in attendance and taking lots of photos…Babes on the Bull…hope to see you kids there.

As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

NBA Players Speak About Obama, Ballers Wearing Jordan Pure Pressure Limited Edition Inaugural Shoes

NBA Players Speak About Obama, Ballers Wearing Jordan Pure Pressure Limited Edition Inaugural Shoes

With the world still reeling from an amazing day in history, the YouTube gods have added this double delicious three minute clip of some of our favorite hoops babes talking about the impact of this election on their lives and that of their kids…Rashard Lewis, Amare Stoudemire, Antawn Jamison, Caron Butler, Phil Jackson and others….

And for those who didn’t get the memo, Lebron watched the inauguration from his hotel room yesterday…in efforts to make sure we knew he was paying attention-he had the media snapping photos of he and his family in the hotel room, predictably, his insanely inflated ego was enough to make me throw up just a little bit…and no, I will never change my opinion of ‘he-who-only-smiles-for-the-camera-when-he-can-make-a-buck-or create-good-publicity-for-himself…

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Maybe one day we’ll see our Baller in Chief donning a pair of Jordan Pure Pressure Limited Edition Inaugural Shoes? The kicks were released yesterday in two color schemes- inspired by our sexy Presidents first official day in office, Atlanta Hawk teammates Mike Bibby and Joe Johnson each wore a pair during their game against the Bulls…Made of a white leather upper, the key feature on each shoe is the graphic treatment along the midsole that is loosely based on stars and stripes. Along the tongue of each shoe, you’ll find the date of 1.20.09 stitched in, and below the eye stay sits each player’s personal logo. As usual, we see the ‘Team Dime’ icon on Mike Bibby’s pair, but here we have the debut of Joe Johnson’s personal ‘JJ2′ logo, designed by Justin Taylor. (Sole Collector)

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As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Steve Nash Grants Make-a-Wish, ‘Nash Bash’ All Star Event

Steve Nash Grants Make-A-Wish

Phoenix Sun Steve Nash recently hung out with some kids from the Make-a-Wish Foundation…the video pretty much covers it all…the mighty-mighty fine beast always goes above and beyond to make wishes come true…my wish? A ticket to the vitaminwater Nash Bash to benefit the Steve Nash Foundation. “All-Star’s in Phoenix this year, and I’m really looking forward to hosting some of my Foundation’s best supporters, new friends and just having my family around’” said Nashty. “All-Star Weekend is one of the most entertaining events of the year, and, for me, it’s another opportunity to mesh my job with my other passions.” If you wanna mesh your job with other passions, the love fest goes down on Friday, February 13 at the Mondrian Scottsdale. Proceeds from ticket sales will benefit the Steve Nash Foundation’s local initiative, Educare Arizona. “Educare is one of the best things we can do for our community,” said Steve. “It’s a holistic approach to the child and family, and will make an incredible impact nationally.” (Stevenash.org)

As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Celebrity Soccer with Mia Hamm, Nomar Garciaparra, Tony Hawk, Ryan Sheckler, Jimmy Jean-Louis and others

Celebrity Soccer: Mia Hamm, Nomar Garciaparra, Tony Hawk, Ryan Sheckler, Jimmy Jean-Louis

Saturday afternoon I hit up the Mia Hamm-Nomar Garciaparra Celebrity Soccer event at the (beautiful) Home Depot center in Los Angeles. This is the second year Mia’s held the event to raise money for the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and the Mia Hamm Foundation- while also encouraging fans to sign up as bone-marrow donors. Last year, the event saved at least one life after they found a donor…during halftime, there were a few tears shed as donors were introduced to recipients…seriously, I even noticed a few celeb’s with wet eyes.

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Partial roster of do-gooders kicking it for Hamm: Andrea Bowen (Desperate Housewives), C. Thomas Howell, Josh Hutcherson, Mark Consuelos (All My Children), Jimmy Jean-Louis (Heroes), Angus Jones (Two and a Half Men), James Leisure (Lipstick Jungle/Las Vegas), Josh Henderson (90210), Good Charlotte’s Benji Madden, skate-gods Tony Hawk and Ryan Sheckler, and several of Hamm’s teammates from the U.S. National Team including Brandi Chastain, Kristine Lilly, Joy Fawcett, Tisha Hoch, Abby Wambach and current and former male soccer hotties Cobi Jones, Chris Seitz, Matt Reis, Brian Dunseth and Alexi Lalas.

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Love for each and every celebrity who kicked it under the hot sun for Mia’s Foundation and in support of a great cause. Hamm spoke before the event about her motivation: “My foundation started about 1999 and was motivated from my relationship with my brother who passed away in 1997 after complications from a bone-marrow transplant,” she said prior to the game. “For us, we shared a love of sport and I also saw first hand what my parents and his parents had to go through, not just financially, but struggling to find a bone-marrow match, so my foundation-the proceeds go to help families find bone-marrow transplants and also to encourage and empower young female athletes.”

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Aside from Nomar and Mia, I’m giving extra love to a few celebrities who I noticed go above and beyond during the day. First time participant, actress Andrea Bowen…girl never stopped smiling or signing autographs for the young fans: “This is my first game and I’m pretty excited that I get to play with all these people. They’re definitely going to have to pull extra weight because I really don’t know what I’m doing but it should be fun and its all for a really good cause”

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Next up, Ryan Sheckler, who was simply hoping for a goal. ‘This is actually the first time I’ve ever played soccer. It feels great, it’s going to be a great day. Hopefully I make a goal, my goal is to make a goal today, just one and I’ll go home happy.” Going home happy were the hundreds of prepubescent girls who squealed with delight each time Sheckler inhaled. Proving that you can be young, rich, arrogant and humble at the same time-Sheckler took about 20-minutes to sign autographs while others were on the field warming up.

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Tony Hawk-aka Ryan Sheckler in 20-years- also impressed the hell outta me. Hawk went out of his way to sign autographs for a group of screaming fans desperate to meet their hero. I’ve been to a lot of events, and not every celebrity who appears takes extra steps to ensure everyone leaves happy…Hawk is definitely an exception.

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Perhaps the happiest participant was Heroes star Jimmy Jean-Louis. Now, don’t kill me kids but I don’t watch the show, so I wasn’t really hip to the Haitian. What I was hip to were his dimples, “It is a beautiful day today and we are going to have a great time.” Indeed. Jean-Louis is one of the busiest celebrity charity advocates I’ve met in a while. He is a member of the celebrity soccer team Hollywood United, which plays tons of charity events, and as a spin off to it, dimples founded his own organization to help the people of Haiti. “I started my own organization Hollywood Unites for Haiti. What I’ve been doing is collecting all the used equipment and going to Haiti to give it to them because they really need this-that’s really how the whole idea of Hollywood Unites for Haiti started. About a month ago, some of us were invited to Haiti-including Josh Brolin and Diane Lane and that was for the opening of a hospital for handicapped, so that was nice and I plan to bring more awareness to Haiti because they really need help.” Since I don’t watch his show and I’ve seen his soccer skills in action- Jimmy Jean-Louis (for purposes of this site) is now classified as an athlete. Much, much, more info about him and his organization to come.

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And finally, what was Benji Madden (Good Charlotte) doing with this baby to make it cry? Feeding it a nectarine? Benji ran off the field, took the kid in his arms, baby instantly began crying and then he’s holding a piece of fruit up to it…kinda funny, don’t know if it’s his baby or not because I’m not into celebrity gossip but thought some of you may get a kick out of it.

Here’s a link to most of my photos…Mia Hamm & Nomar Garciaparra Celebrity Soccer Challenge. Enjoy. And next year, might I suggest you cough up the $20 bucks to be there yourself?

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As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Shane Battier Reads to Achieve, Tayshaun Donates to Kids Kicking Cancer, Grizzlies Give Kids New Shoes (Or What We’ll Never See Lebron Doing)

A FEW OF MY OFF-COURT NBA ALL STARS

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Generally, you’ll have me at ‘Rockets’ due to the number of good-guys on the roster…and yesterday one of those mighty-mighty-fine men, Shane Battier, was at the Children’s Museum in Houston. At first I was certain that he had been “added” as an exhibit until I saw him reading to the kids and learned that he was there for the Read to Achieve event. Little to no media coverage so I thought I’d do it here. The NBA’s Read to Achieve program is a year-round campaign which helps young people develop a life-long love for reading…which isnt really too hard when you got guys like Shane reading to you.

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And pinky props to Piston Tayshaun Prince (and his wife Farah) for chanting the mantra ‘Power, Peace, Purpose’, after presenting a scholarship check for $2,500 to Kids Kicking Cancers as part of the Pistons Read to Achieve Tour.

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Just a lil love for Grizzlies Mike Conley, Rudy Gay, Elliot Perry, Kyle Lowry and Hakim Warrick for taking part in the Samaritan’s feet shoe distribution at Street Ministries yesterday in Memphis…actually, I’m giving more than just a lil love to these guys because they not only fitted kids for sneakers, but also handed out kicks to the kids AND (gulp) even washed their feet. This is the first time I’ve ever come across any of our ballers or athletes actually washing kids’ feet. (Like to see Lebron do that)…again, massive hugs to the Grizzlies.

Hope to see you here: Tomorrow is the 2009 Mia Hamm and Nomar Garciaparra Celebrity Soccer Challenge to benefit bone marrow patient and family services at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and the Mia Hamm Foundation. Celebrities expected: Nomar Garciaparra [LA Dodgers], Mia Hamm [Soccer Hall of Famer], Tony hawk, Maksim Chmerkovski, Misty May-Treanor, Kerri Walsh, Zachary Levi, Josh Henderson, C. Thomas Howell, Ryan Sheckler, Sal Masekela, Marcus Allen, Benji Madden, Angus T. Jones, Dule Hill, Anthony Lapaglia, Andrea Bowen, Chris Richardson, Josh Hutchenson, Jimmy Jean-Louis, Rivers Cuomo, members of the U.S. Olympic Men’s and Women’s Soccer Teams and many others. Home Depot Center, 18400 Avalon Blvd., Carson, CA.

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As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

All Stars for Hope Soccer Event

ALL STARS FOR HOPE

On June 14 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford New Jersey, some of the hottest men in Euro soccer are taking the field for the ALL STARS FOR HOPE charity game to benefit Mikael Silvestri’s Schools for Hope. Silvestri is a French defender who kicks it for Arsenal-but he’s all right in my book…he’s on a quest to build schools around the world-so far completing several in Guinea and Niger…

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“When my children first started to go to school I realized that education is the basis for a better life for poor children everywhere in the world,” Silvestre said. “I said to myself that I want to act, I want to be involved, with my own money. The focus is not on football at these schools, it is getting a good education, basic skills and professional skills, so the students are able to go out and get a good job.”

All Stars for Hope could have easily been named ‘Hotties for Hope’ as it includes (in addition to Silvestre); Thierry Henry (France/Barcelona), Didier Drogba (Ivory Coast/Chelsea), Wayne Rooney (England/Manchester United), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal/Man-United), Nicolas Anelka (France/Chelsea), Emmanuel Adebayor (Togo/Arsenal), Manuel Almunia (Spain/Arsenal), Frank Lampard (England/Chelsea), Ryan Giggs (Wales/Manchester United) and others.

As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

18th Annual Taste of NFL

18th Annual Taste of NFL

For those of you with an affinity for fine food and NFL players, this is your chance to sink your teeth into some mighty fine men while tackling hunger in America. The 18th Annual Taste of NFL is taking place on Saturday January 31 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg (FL). Here’s how it works, one celebrity chef and one current/alumni NFL beast from each city will pair up on the eve of SuperBowl…you get to sample specialty foods, meet the chefs, get autographs, and bid on some great silent auction items…

Any Top Chef fans out there? Take note, Tom Colicchio will be there with former Top Chef contestants…entertainment for the night will be Max Weinberg from Late Night with Conan. Partial list of NFL babes pairing up with a chef: Ben Patrick (AZ Cardinals); Derrick Martin (Baltimore Ravens); Richard Marshall (Carolina Panthers); Shaun Gayle (Chicago Bears); Jacoby Jones (Houston Texans); Kevin Houser (N.O. Saints). This is one of the most popular and worthwhile events happening during SuperBowl week and tickets usually sell out fast. Please visit www.Tasteofthenfl.com for more info and tickets.

As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Dikembe Mutombo Party With A Purpose

Dikembe Mutombo Party With A Purpose

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Party with a purpose…indeed. Dikembe Mutombo is hosting a big pre-inauguration bash in DC next week, January 19, to benefit his Foundation. The party starts at 6PM at Eyebar located at 1716 I St NW. The event will feature 250 of DC’s Most Socially-Conscious Young Professionals-including Dave Chappelle, live DJ, and complimentary open bar from 6-7pm. But tickets here…DMF PARTY and to all the sponsors breaking down my door-yes, I would love to go!

As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Inaugurate With Carmelo Anthony as his Foundation is Honored, Hoop It Up with Snoop Dogg, Bid on Kurt Warner’s Ball and Hope Phelps Auctions His Speedo

Inaugurate With Carmelo Anthony as his Foundation is Honored, Hoop It Up with Snoop Dogg, Bid on Kurt Warner’s Ball and Hope Phelps Auctions His Speedo

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With President Hot-Stuff ready to be sworn-in, the East Coast parties are being announced. It kills me that I cant be right up in the middle of D.C. for all the action…yes, Jay-Z is hosting a gala-but the event I would chew-my arm off to get to is being thrown by Perennial Sports and Entertainment…included in their “Party With a Purpose: An Inauguration Celebration” series of events is a special night recognizing Carmelo Anthony’s Foundation (as well as Ne-Yo’s Compound Foundation). Details: FRIDAY, JANUARY 16: Denver Nuggets superstar Carmelo Anthony, Grammy Award Winner singer/songwriter Ne-Yo and PSE join to present Artists and Athletes for a Cause. PSE will recognize the Carmelo Anthony Foundation and Ne-Yo’s Compound Foundation and honor the organizations’ efforts to address the challenges facing our nation’s youth. Who: NBA superstar Carmelo Anthony, Honored Guest R&B Recording Artist Ne-Yo, Honored Guest Former MTV Veejay, Lala Vazquez, Host BET and Political Commentator Jeff Johnson, Host. When: 6:45-11 pm Where: House of Sweden, 2900 K St, NW, Washington, DC.

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If you live in So-Cal or find yourself in Compton this weekend, you might wanna throw down ten bucks to help out ‘The Stepping Stone’-a new youth center in Compton which helps local kids by teaching ‘em sports and arts and offers academic tutoring. The building has been under construction for sometime and needs just a bit more money to finish it up before it opens this Spring. This event’s garnered a ton of celebrity athletes support, most notably my favorite local Snoop Dogg…joining the Snoop: Warren G, Lil Eazy E, Allen Payne (“House of Payne”), Arlen Escarpeta (“American Dreams”), Brian McKnight, Los Angeles Sparks coach Michael Cooper, two-time NBA All-Star Champion and former Los Angeles Laker Norman Nixon, WNBA Champion and All-Star Game MVP Los Angeles Sparks Center Lisa Leslie, and former NBA players Khalid Reeves (Chicago Bulls Guard), Pooh Richardson (Los Angeles Clippers Point Guard), and Byron Russell (Los Angeles Lakers and Denver Nuggets Shooting Guard). The game will take place at 4 p.m. at Compton High School (601 S. Acacia Avenue Compton). Tickets are $10 and can be purchased on the day or by phone at (877) 689-7717.

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If you’re a regular, you know I’m a huge supporter of Celebrity Fight Night. Last years honored ‘celebrity’ was LaDainian Tomlinson…this year the Muhammad Ali Sports Leadership Award goes to Kurt Warner. (Check out event details on my calendar of events page). CFN is being held on March 28 in Phoenix, and if the gods are smiling upon me, I will be there again this year because (gulp) they just announced that Michael Phelps is going to be awarded the Muhammad Ali Sports Achievement Award. Additionally, Warner will be featured on a limited-edition commemorative football being produced to help the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The footballs will be available for $99.00 each and only 2,009 will be made…to get one call 800-345-2868 or check out nikosports.com….I am now awaiting word on weather or not Michael Phelps will auction off one of his Speedo’s to benefit my libido. The sexy eight-time gold medallist is currently at a promotional event in Beijing as the spokesperson for Mazda…seen here holding up a Chinese character “Niu” or Ox to mark the upcoming Lunar New Year of the Ox.

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As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Cristiano Ronaldo is THE Player of the Year

Cristiano Ronaldo is THE Player of the Year
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No, its not a new boy band….it’s the nominees for the FIFA World player 2008…from left to right: Spain’s Xavi, Spain’s Fernando Torres, Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo, Argentina’s Lionel Messi and Brazils’ Kaka.  The winner? No surprise here, we all knew Ronaldo was gonna top last years’ winner, Kaka, at the Zurich Opera House today…and so it was-the world football’s governing body honored Man-U’s Cristiano Ronaldo with the Player of the Year Award-making him the first English Premier League player to win in its 18-year history.

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“It is a dream for me to get this prize because I want to bring the team and my country forward,” Ronaldo said. “I would like to dedicate it to my family. This is the most important thing to me.” Ronaldo garnered 935 votes in a worldwide poll of team captains and coaches. He was followed by Barcelona and Argentina midfielder Lionel Messi (678 votes) and Liverpool striker Fernando Torres (203), with the results announced by Brazilian great Pele. “It is an overwhelming moment, a very special moment in my life,” Ronaldo said in his acceptance speech. “I would like to say to my mother and sister that the fireworks can be fired off now.”

I got some love for Chelsea running through my veins, so it does pain me to give praise to anything Man-U related …but in this case, Cristiano’s 42 goals in a season and the fact that he led the team to the Premier League and Champions League titles in May is enough to make me (one-day) cheer for Man-U. In addition to being named FIFA’s Player of the Year…Ronaldo also won the Ballon D’Or as European player of the year and World Soccer magazine’s player of the year…guess we can call him the player of the year-but not the driver of the year?

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In case you were under a rock last week, hot stuff totaled his Ferrari after he collided with a roadside barrier in a tunnel near Manchester airport as he was driving to training on Thursday morning. Of course, superman was unhurt.

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As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Athletes Charities and Events Worth Supporting

Athletes Charities and Events Worth Supporting

First and foremost, there are several “it goes without saying” celebrity athletes who, in my book, can do no wrong. Dikembe Mutombo walks on water, period. Dude can shake his finger at me and ask me to move to the Congo to clean-up bedpans at his hospital and I’d do it. He is a humanitarian first, an athlete second. Safe to say he reigns supreme in the Church of Athlebritology. Yeah, Melo’s permitted through the pearly gates but I’m gonna need a few hours with him in purgatory first just to make sure…Gilbert Arenas, Dwight Howard, Steve Nash, Amare Stoudemire, Chris Paul-all gain immediate entry…as do Grant Hill, Etan Thomas, Juwan Howard, and Tony Hawk. Quite a few won’t make it into Athlebritology heaven: Lebron James, Michael Vick, Kobe Bryant and Roger Clemens just to name a few.

Over time, it’s become increasingly easier to determine who’s really into helping others and who’s in it just for the PR (a-hem Lebron). As I add events to the calendar page, I’ll be sure to highlight the ones I personally recommend. You can take my advice or not…for example, if you live in So-Cal and have never attended the Cancer for College event with Will Ferrell then you must be insane. Ferrell lends his name, time and comedy to this incredibly necessary and sincere charity event. For a small price you help send a cancer patient to college, hang out with Frank the Tank, play golf, eat good food and make new friends…another event I wouldn’t miss is Celebrity Fight Night held in Arizona. It’ll cost ya a bit more to attend the premier fundraiser for the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center, but you get one hell of a swag-bag and a truly priceless experience…

Granted, I can’t list ‘em all in one post…but I will keep you updated on what some of our mighty might fine men are doing…which all goes back to their foundations and how they are run. I want to help raise money and awareness for foundations with employees who care about their work. Don’t wait three days to call me back if I got a fat check for you-because to me this means you must not really need it or care as much as you’d like us to believe. Anyway…several cool new foundations and website have come to my attention in the last few weeks. One comes from hockey great Jeremy Roenick.

Roenick just launched his new site Roenicklife.com and he did it with style. No janky dead links or non-responsive PR folks…In part, he wrote: “I have spent the past twenty-one years sharing my passion and myself with the game of hockey. I have had the opportunity to touch the hearts of millions of fans and have been excited everyday to help create a smile on so many childrens faces…I need to be involved for myself…to keep touching the hearts of all the people that have supported me for half my life is a huge priority…I decided to take the website a step further, and incorporate my love of the game, my voice, and my passion to use the website as a place where constant communication between all supporters can be used to help benefit charity.”

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Currently, Roenick’s got several charity related ‘raffles’ on his site. You can win Jeremy’s personal tickets to the Sharks/Dallas Stars Game, an autographed jersey, signed photos and other stuff…winners announced on February 14, so hurry up and enter, proceeds to benefit the Aubri Brown Club.

For those who find themselves at the SuperBowl this year, look for several worthy events…if I were a betting girl I’d say the place to be is the Par & Poker Celebrity Challenge for Charity. Hosted by Super Bowl Champion Seth Joyner, the January 29 event will feature a celebrity packed golf and poker experience and it’s FREE! Don’t believe me? Last year Celebrity Golf Magazine named it as one-of-the top Celebrity Golf Events. Aside from providing awareness about the Joyner-Walker Foundation, Par and Poker aims to raise awareness for its host city charities as well. The JWF, in my opinion- is one of the best out there for several reasons. One, they got a tight team running the show, and two, because they are one step ahead of the curve-or more specifically, the economy. The foundations flagship ‘financial literacy’ program schools kids on finances. Founders (NFL Veteran) Seth Joyner, (PGA Tour Pro) Adam Walker and Leonard Walker have made it their goal to become the nations leader in educating our youth on finances, investments and money management. Last year, the program enrolled 13 students at South Mountain Community High School. “Right now our short -term goal is to get into all ten community colleges here (Arizona),” Andy Walker said,” We want to be the financial literacy provider for all of them. Our long-term goal on a national level is to be the face of financial literacy for students and make it mandatory for them to have a certain number of hours to graduate.” For more info, please visit the Joyner-Walker Foundation and tell ‘em Delinda sent ya.

As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Mark Sanchez and USC Win More Than Roses

Mark Sanchez and USC Win More Than Roses
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Admittedly, I couldn’t care less about the Rose Bowl. Being a So-Cal girl, I do appreciate our college teams, both UCLA and USC. Don’t ask me to pick a side cuz it will never happen…but, something caught my eye as I tuned into the end of the Rose Bowl on Thursday. That something was written on the face of Mark Sanchez as he flashed that drop-dead smile across the screen: ‘R.I.P. Garenn.’

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Props to USC for its incredible 38-24 victory over Penn State-but bigger props for advertising something worthwhile during a game…a young boys battle with cancer. His name: Garenn Figueroa. He dreamed of going to USC…and for at least three games, Sanchez inked up his face in support of the boys battle.

Unfortunately, the little guy passed away on November 16 after a long battle with cancer but thanks to the USC Trojans his memory lives on. Well done boys.

R.I.P. Garenn Figueroa, R.I.P. Feb. 4, 1993 – Nov. 16, 2008.

As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Nadal and Federer Do It Dubai Style

Double De-Licious on a Dhow in Dubai
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When the boys visit Dubai, they do it right. We’ve seen just about all the worlds’ best doing their thing atop the Burj Al Arab, so it’s no surprise that our Spanish treat Rafael Nadal and the used-to-be-worlds-number-one Roger Federer celebrated the 2009 ATP World Tour by playing a match atop a ‘dhow’ in Doha Bay…

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Granted, Andy Murray is on-fire right now. The Scottish beast spanked our top-ranked Nadal 6-4, 5-7, 6-3 Saturday to capture the Capitala World Tennis Championship exhibition and $250,000 winner-take-all prize. A day earlier in the semifinals, he showed Federer who’s boss with a 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (6) victory. I’m actually cool with Murray as long as he wasn’t the one who used the beautiful face of Marat Safin as a punching bag. Safin arrived for his match against Italy’s Simone Bolelli in Perth sporting facial bruising he said he suffered in Moscow.

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Props to Columbian singer Shakira who has taken an interest in our tapa…too bad she isnt beautiful…Maria-I’d be worried gurl.

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And its not just our tennis-babies who are frolicking in Dubai…dear god, AC Milan arrived at Al-Nasr’s club ground in Dubai on Friday to start their winter training camp in the Gulf emirate that will culminate in the Dubai Football Challenge on January 6 (AC Milan versus Hamburg SV Germany) …is it hot in here or is it just me?

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New rule: weekends are for objectifying…weekdays are for charity. And I will pay more attention to Don Cheadle.

As always, thanks for reading. Delinda@athlebrities.com

Athletes Who Bring Sexy to the Sport

DYNAMIC DUO’S
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Hope everyone was safe, happy and loved this holiday…Events have been added to the Celebrity Athlete Charity Events Calendar, with plenty more to come. Next week, I’m gonna break down some of the events for you and highlight the one which I recommend…if you know of an event you’d like listed, please email me, an if you are a PR firm or Athlete rep, please contact me to be included on the calendar…but in the meantime, I’ve got plenty of pent-up ‘are-you-kidding-me’s’ that need to come out….

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The battle between my heart and my libido rages on- spurred by David Beckham “on loan” to AC Milan alongside Paolo Maldini-I must bow to the babes and give proper recognition to some of the men who’ve paired up in the past to make me question my sanity…Beckham is a no-brainer, but when paired with Maldini? Are you kidding me? Geez-Us. Both are exceptional ‘givers’ in the charity world but right now I am so blinded by ‘fineness’ that I can’t even spell humanitarian…and for the record, Beckham’s sex-appeal is no match for the Italian beast who’s dark hair, piercing eyes and delicious accent make Beck’s look a bit…ah…mousy?

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As I refresh my desktop screen saver, I still cannot bring myself to delete this photo from 2007 when we enjoyed a soul shattering moment of ‘hello-ness’ as Camilo Villegas stood alongside Aaron Baddeley…not much else to say except here’s to a few more crawls, and victories, from Villegas this year.

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Another one of my favorite: Chad Pennington, then still with the Jets, and the ‘are you kidding me’ look on his face as Tom Brady whispers sweet nothings in his ear…I’ve always had a secret thing for Chad-and I dare say you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who’s got a bad thing to say about him-as a person, as a player I’m sure there’s haters but who cares as Chad and his new team (Miami) watch Favre and the Jets say buh-bye to the Bowl.

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One duo that always makes me lose my voice is Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. This photo from 2006 is timeless to me. The Swiss-Mister-in my opinion- seems to always rely on his reputation to pave the way to victory, whereas our Tapa is always busy training. The manner in which Rafa is holding his victory screams ‘oh my god I really did it’ while the Swiss-ter wears a look which says “yeah-enjoy-it- while-you-can”…last laugh on R-Fed as our baybee sits pretty at number one. Both are in Abu Dhabi for the start of the Capitala World Tennis Championships. Vamos you sweet thing, Va-mos.

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Pavel Nedved and Allesandro Del Piero. April 2007. I don’t know if Del Piero slapped Nedved in the face or kissed him afterwards, but the photo qualifies-in my book- as a classic.

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Here’s to an awesome 2009!
As always, thanks for reading.

delinda@athlebrities.com