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SBD/December 18, 2013/Franchises
Published December 18, 2013
TAKE CARE: In London, John Cross reported EPL club Tottenham Hotspur F Jermain Defoe "was persuaded to join" MLS club Toronto FC "after a phone call from rap mega-star Drake." The Canadian rapper has "been recruited by Toronto FC for an ambassadorial role, and rang ... Defoe to try and talk him into moving." Sources said that the England-born Defoe is "a huge fan of Drake" and was "blown away that he made personal contact" (MIRROR.co.uk, 12/17).
BEARING THE BURDEN: In Memphis, Geoff Calkins notes Grizzlies CEO Jason Levien is still "getting pounded for cutting loose the only coach in franchise history to win a playoff game." Levien "stood by his decision" to dismiss Lionel Hollins in favor of Dave Joerger. But Levien said, "If I was to evaluate in six-week increments, I think we would have been better off keeping the staff from last year." He went on to "make the point that he doesn't evaluate anything in six-weeks increments, and that doing so would be unwise." But it was telling that "even Levien acknowledged that the team's record would have been better under Hollins" (COMMERCIALAPPEAL.com, 12/16).