Candace Parker, Jayson Tatum Join Kevin Durant in Backing League One Volleyball
League One Volleyball (LOVB), the largest brand in youth volleyball and the first professional full-season volleyball league in the US, has raised $35 million in Series B funding, it announced Wednesday. Some of the famous faces backing the firm are Olympic gold medalist Lindsey Vonn, two-time WNBA MVP Candace Parker and her daughter Lailaa Williams, Olympic volleyball gold medalist Jordyn Poulter, actress Amy Schumer, 1991 FIFA Women’s World Cup champion Amy Griffin, Fenway Sports Group Partner Linda Henry, and Boston Celtics star Jayson Tatum. This follows initial support from LOVB’s existing Series A investors like Kevin Durant and Rich Kleiman‘s Boardroom Sports Holdings and comedian Chelsea Handler, all of whom endorse LOVB’s special community-up ideology. LOVB will use the funding to strengthen both pro and club operations, hire more athletes, coaches, and trainers, build out its branding, and more.
Damian Lillard to Join Giannis, Bucks in Reported Trade; Holiday & Ayton Also Moved
After 11 seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers, Damian Lillard is headed to the Midwest. The Trail Blazers agreed to trade the veteran guard to the Milwaukee Bucks in a three-team trade also involving the Phoenix Suns, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported Wednesday. As part of the deal, Jrue Holiday, Deandre Ayton, and Toumani Camara are going to the Blazers, as well as the Bucks’ 2029 unprotected first-round pick and unprotected swap rights in 2028 and 2030. Meanwhile, the Suns land Jusuf Nurkić, Grayson Allen, Nassir Little, and Keon Johnson. Prior to the announcement, the Bucks’ odds of winning next year’s NBA Finals were at +600. Now, they stand at +360. In his first remarks post-trade, Lillard said he was “excited to get to work.”
Usher Reportedly Going on Global Tour Following 2024 Super Bowl Show
In addition to his new gig as the headline of the upcoming Super Bowl‘s halftime show, Usher‘s adding to an already busy 2024. The eight-time Grammy Award-winning musician plans to embark on a worldwide tour next year, Billboard reported on Wednesday. The official announcement is expected to come during his SBLVIII performance in February. The report also alleged that Usher‘s team has been placing holds on international arenas, further heightening suspicions of a global jaunt. The “My Way” singer hasn’t been on the road since The UR Experience Tour in 2015 but has been keeping audiences plenty entertained with his sold-out residency in Las Vegas.
WNBA Expansion Expected to Hit Bay Area with Help From Warriors
The Golden State Warriors have achieved monumental success in the Bay Area. And now, with the help of the seven-time NBA champions, the area is hoping to recreate the same magic with a women’s professional basketball team. The Athletic reported Tuesday that while a deal hasn’t been finalized yet, a WNBA team in the Bay is expected to soon. The team will also play at the Chase Center and will be operated by Golden State. The most recent WNBA franchise team is the Atlanta Dream, which began playing in 2008.
Colbert, Fallon, Meyers, Kimmel Shows to Return on Oct. 2 After WGA Strike Ends
The WGA strike is officially over, so when will your favorite shows make their returns to the screen? While it’s unclear for scripted programs, we do have insight into when late-night television will be back. CBS’s Stephen Colbert, NBC’s Jimmy Fallon and Seth Meyers, and ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel announced that their late-night shows will return on Monday, Oct. 2. For other late-night hosts, John Oliver‘s HBO late-night program will return on Sunday, Oct. 1, while Bill Maher said on X that his HBO show will be back Friday. To support their respective writers during the 148-day protest, Colbert, Fallon, Meyers, Kimmel, and Oliver hosted a joint Spotify podcast beginning in August called Strike Force Five — named after their personal text chain.
Meta Unveils Updated Headsets in Quest to Become Metaverse-first Company
When Mark Zuckerberg addressed employees at the Meta Connect conference on Wednesday, the company’s CEO unveiled two new high-tech headsets: the AR/VR-powered Meta Quest 3 and the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses. As it continues efforts to become a metaverse-first enterprise, the gadgets are reflective of the advances made to achieve those goals. Priced at $499, the Meta Quest 3 features a thinner design and sharper visuals compared to its predecessor. The $299 Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses debut with a new silhouette and upgraded cameras for better photo and video capture. The Quest 3 is available online and in brick-and-mortar stores on Oct. 10, while the glasses go on sale Oct. 17.