SBD/September 23, 2011/People and Pop Culture

Names In The News

Durant has begun shooting for an upcoming movie in which he has a starring role
In Oklahoma City, Darnell Mayberry noted Thunder F KEVIN DURANT "on Monday began production on the upcoming movie in which he has a starring role." No "official announcement of the film's title and plot has been made," but it is reportedly titled "SWITCH" and will be a "family-friendly film." The movie has license to use NBA property, "allowing such things as the Thunder's jersey, logo, arena and mascot, as well as NBA game footage to be used." Durant, however, is "prohibited from being filmed in Thunder or NBA-related scenes until the NBA lockout is lifted" (THE OKLAHOMAN, 9/21).

INTIMIDATING SIBLINGS: ESPN.com's Brant James noted Lions DT NDAMUKONG SUH's 28-year-old sister, NGUM SUH, "describes herself as her brother's business manager." Agency Sports Management & Marketing Partner RUSSELL SPIELMAN, who "directs the Suhs' marketing and endorsement ventures, describes her as a 'silent assassin' -- in the best possible way.'" Ngum is "diplomatic and forthright, yet unapologetic in advocating for her brother in business and philanthropic matters." Spielman said, "She is not loud and demonstrative. She won't go in a room and start yelling, but if you mess with the bull, you get the horns. Don't cross her" (ESPN.com, 9/22).

NAMES: Former NBAer YAO MING and Virgin Group Chair RICHARD BRANSON made an appeal Thursday in Shanghai "against the consumption of shark fins to a group of 30 of China's richest and most influential businesspeople." In China, "demand for the traditional delicacy is soaring despite efforts to ban their use and trade" (AP, 9/22)....Knicks consultant DONNIE WALSH Thursday night was was inducted into the New York City Basketball Hall of Fame at the New York Athletic Club" (N.Y. POST, 9/23)....The Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit Thursday ruled nine-time Olympic track gold medalist CARL LEWIS "does not meet New Jersey's four-year residency requirement and therefore will not be allowed to run for a state Senate seat" (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 9/22)....DR. KENNETH CHESSICK and wife ELLEN donated $3M to Northern Illinois Athletics, marking the department's largest gift ever (NIU)....Cavaliers Owner DAN GILBERT "has agreed to buy two more downtown buildings" in Detroit, adding to his portfolio of real estate as he tries to shape a new entrepreneurial zone." Gilbert's Quicken Loans "will pay $337,500 each for the buildings" (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 9/22)....Phillies CF SHANE VICTORINO and wife MELISSA spent $900,000 to refurbish the Boys & Girls Club in Nicetown, Penn. (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 9/23).

IN MEMORY: Basketball HOFer and Big East founder DAVE GAVITT’s “personal qualities were at the forefront at his funeral Mass” on Thursday in Providence, R.I. Gavitt's pallbearers included former Providenec College basketball players MARVIN BARNES, ERNIE DIGREGORIO and KEVIN STACOM. Other attendees included BOB COUSY, Gergetown Univ. men's basketball coach JOHN THOMPSON III and his father JOHN THOMPSON JR., Syracuse coach JIM BOEHEIM, Pittsburgh coach JAMIE DIXON, UConn coach JIM CALHOUN and former Maryland coach GARY WILLIAMS (PROJO.com, 9/22).
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