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Daily Briefing: Abdul-Jabbar Sells Trophies for STEM, New ESPN Camera Tech, Women’s Cyclist Catches Men

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in attendance during the game between the Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles Lakers during a 108-107 Laker win at Staples Center on Jan. 23, 2018. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
  • Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Auctions Trophies to Fund STEM Education: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar auctioned off memorabilia from his legendary NBA career on Sunday, netting almost $3 million. A large portion of the money will be donated to Abdul-Jabbar’s Skyhook Foundation, which is dedicated to helping kids learn science, technology, engineering, and math. “When it comes to choosing between storing a championship ring or trophy in a room, or providing kids with an opportunity to change their lives, the choice is pretty simple,” Abdul-Jabbar wrote on his blog. “Sell it all.”
  • ESPN Launches New Camera Tech For MLS Opener: During this past Sunday’s MLS season opener between D.C. United and Atlanta United, ESPN teamed with ChyronHego to use AllCam for the first time in its soccer coverage. AllCam stitches together images from three 4K cameras, giving the production team the ability to zoom in anywhere on the field to catch events that weren’t the focus of the main coverage. This coming weekend, ESPN will also experiment with robotic cameras that are placed directly through the goal netting, according to Sports Video Group.
  • Women’s Bike Race Delayed After Catching Men’s Event: Swiss pro cyclist Nicole Hanselmann was forced to stop for five minutes during the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, a prominent race in Belgium, after she caught up with the men’s competition. “I attacked after 7km, and was alone in the break for around 30km,” Hanselmann said on her Instagram. “But then an awkward moment happened and I almost saw the back of the men’s peloton… [Maybe] the other women and me were [too] fast or the men [too] slow.” Hanselmann had a two-minute lead when she was stopped, but after the disruption she eventually finished 74th. 
  • ESPN Places Bet on Daily Wager Show: ESPN will launch a new sports betting show on Mar. 11 called Daily WagerSports betting analyst Dan Kezirian will host the show and will be joined by various sports betting experts and ESPN reporters. The one-hour program will air Monday through Friday on ESPNEWS at 6 p.m. ET, and will also stream live on the ESPN App. “The sports betting environment has changed,” said Norby Williamson, ESPN EVP and executive editor of studio production in a statement. “ESPN is going to have a strong and vibrant presence across our platforms.”
  • NHL Alumni to Research Cannabis Treatment for Concussions: The NHL Alumni Association will work with cannabis company Canopy Growth and NEEKA Health Canada to find out whether cannabis can reduce the severity of post-concussion brain disorders in former players. The study is expected to begin in summer 2019 and will examine 100 former players. “This study offers alumni the promise of help and hope,” said Glenn Healy, Executive Director of the NHLAA in a statement. “We are excited to participate in what could become a true game-changer in allowing these professional athletes to finish strong.”
  • Bridge Player Banned for Taking Performance-Enhancing Drugs: Gier Helgemo, the world’s No. 1 bridge player, has been suspended by the World Bridge Federation after testing positive for synthetic testosterone and clomifene, according to Bloomberg. Clomifene is medically used to treat infertility in women, but can also raise testosterone levels in men. Cyclists and track-and-field athletes have been caught illegally taking both substances for performance-enhancing effects, though neither is likely to provide an advantage for a card player.
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