Mike Lee wears blue and gold gear when he fights. As he steps into the boxing ring for a match, a Notre Dame banner hangs behind him. In his last year of college, Lee, a 2009 Notre Dame alumnus, was interviewing for jobs in the business world and training for his final Bengal Bouts tournament. Now, he is two weeks away from his third professional boxing match, which will take place on Nov. 13 at Cowboys Stadium in Dallas. But he keeps his amateur roots at the forefront. “Notre Dame was such a huge part of my life,” Lee said. “I’ll always be a huge fan of Notre Dame, and always be involved. … We get a ton of support from the Notre Dame community, which is why we wanted to wear blue and gold.” Lee’s fight, a four-round light heavyweight bout against Keith Debow of St. Louis, will be part of a headlining event that will feature boxing star Manny Pacquiao fighting Antonio Margarito for a world championship. “This next fight is by far the biggest fight of my career,” Lee said. “… There should be 75-80,000 people there.” Lee turned professional in January and signed with Bob Arum’s Top Rank Boxing, the promotional company that represents Pacquiao as well as many other top boxers. He trains in Houston and won both of his first two matches, which took place in Chicago and at the Palms in Las Vegas. “Things are going well,” he said. “I’ve been training in Houston, just getting better and better. I’ve gotten a lot of good comments from the boxing world, from fighters, from writers.” Top Rank decided to place Lee on the Nov. 13 fight card, albeit with a little help. “I met Jerry Jones, the owner of the Cowboys,” Lee said. “When this fight came around, he apparently told Bob, ‘I want that kid, Mike Lee from Notre Dame, on the card.’ “It’s a big deal to be on this card, so I’m excited. They only have their top prospects.” He said many Notre Dame alumni who live in the area will be coming to show their support. “We have a lot of alumni clubs coming to this fight,” he said. “The fan base is especially great from Notre Dame.” Lee, of Wheaton, Ill., donated a travel package for the event to Champions for Children’s, a charity auction that benefits Chicago’s Children’s Memorial Hospital. “The auction is an annual auction that they hold, they have a lot of Chicagoland athletes,” Lee said. “They approached me and we wanted to do something.” The travel package includes air travel, hotel and ringside tickets for the event. The auction will be on Nov. 12. “I wish I could be there,” Lee said. “But they told me it should auction for a lot of money, and it will go towards the hospital. And then I’ll be able to meet the people who came after my fight. I’m glad the hospital wanted me to be a part of it.” Boxing and charity have always gone together for Lee. A three-time Bengal Bouts champion, Lee was a captain of the club in his senior year, and was one a part of one of the first group of boxers who traveled to Bangladesh in the summer of 2008. “Staying involved in charity as well as doing what I love is important to me,” Lee said. “I think Bengal Bouts was the platform that started everything for me in terms of being involved in charity and really getting involved in many different levels. I just want to use my success and the publicity I’ve been getting to help out some people along the way.”
NewsTalk ZB 24 November 2017Family First Comment: It was always going to end in tears…#DenyingBiologyAustralia’s weightlifting chief says New Zealand’s selection of transgender athlete Laurel Hubbard will create an uneven playing field at next year’s Commonwealth Games.Hubbard, who will compete in the 90kg-plus division on the Gold Coast, will be the first transgender athlete to represent New Zealand at a Commonwealth Games.As Gavin Hubbard, the 39-year-old was a national junior record-holder in the male 105kg class before she transitioned into a woman in her mid-30s.Rival athletes complained that she had an unfair advantage after she won gold at the Australian Open this year, lifting 123 kilos in the snatch and 145 kilos in the clean and jerk.Australian Weightlifting Federation chief executive Michael Keelan on Friday claimed Hubbard would have both a physiological and mental edge over her rivals.“We’re in a power sport which is normally related to masculine tendencies … where you’ve got that aggression, you’ve got the right hormones, then you can lift bigger weights,” he told AAP.READ MORE: http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/news/national/backlash-from-australia-against-transgender-weightlifter/Teammate unhappy with inclusion of transgender athlete in NZ teamRadio NZ News 24 November 2017The selection of transgender weightlifter Laurel Hubbard for the Commonwealth Games doesn’t sit well with one of her teammates.Hubbard, 39, is the first transgender sportsperson to represent New Zealand.She was cleared by the International Olympic Committee and International Weightlifting Federation to compete against other female lifters.Hubbard, who will compete in the 90kg class, became the first transgender athlete to win an international weightlifting title for New Zealand in Australia earlier this year but her victory didn’t go down well with rivals who said she had an unfair advantage having previously competed as a man.Earlier in her career she was a national junior record-holder in the male 105kg class before she transitioned in her mid-30s.Tracey Lambrechs, who won a bronze medal at the Glasgow Games, has been forced to drop down a class with the arrival of Hubbard on the women’s weight lifting scene and Lambrechs was also uncomfortable with Hubbard being able to compete.“I feel there is an unfair advantage even though it is within all the regulations… all I can hope is that they look into it and make a more educated judgement,” Lambrechs said.Lambrechs is disappointed the selection of the 12-strong weighlifting team is being overshadowed by the inclusion of Hubbard, but accepts it is an unusual situation.“I am glad that people can come out and live their lives and be happy but when it comes to a professional sporting environment it gets a bit trickier.“[She] is lifting a lot more than what the other women are… so personally I do think there is an unfair advantage.”Lambrechs was also concerned about the impact the international media attention could have on the team at the Games.READ MORE: https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/sport/344652/teammate-unhappy-with-inclusion-of-transgender-athlete-in-nz-team
With Labor Day Weekend in full effect, and county beaches reopening open, residents and business owners are actually looking forward to the week ahead, for once.That’s because Palm Beach County will enter the first step of phase 2 of Gov. Ron DeSantis’ reopening plan this Tuesday.Last week, commissioners approved a plan that would potentially see businesses continue to resume operations gradually, over a period of months.Under the first part, which takes effect, retail stores and gyms will be among those who will be able to return to full capacity for the first time since the pandemic started.One would assume that’s good news for movie theaters, which have remained shuttered since March, as production and releases were halted, postponed, or cancelled outright in some cases.Some film companies compensated for the closures by rushing their new releases to other viewing methods, such as Video On Demand.“Without having (the summer blockbuster season) it obviously has an impact on (our) bottom line,” Paul Safran, president and CEO of iPic Theaters, recently told our news partner, WPTV NewsChannel 5.Courtesy: Facebook/iPic TheatersHis company has 14 locations, two of which are located in Delray Beach and Boca Raton.Still, he believes theaters such as his will remain as popular as ever under the circumstances, as movies with six-figure production budgets rely on their theater releases to turn a profit, or to break even at least.Indeed, many theater goers have lamented the fact that they couldn’t enjoy the full experience for much of the year.Now, with theaters in our county set to slowly begin welcoming movie buffs again the coming days and weeks, there comes a big test to Safran’s prediction.During the pandemic, many other new lifestyle and business habits have emerged, some of which could become permanent.With that in mind, it remains to be seen whether the crowds will return in big enough numbers to sustain theaters moving forward, or whether they will send theaters to history in preference for the new ways of watching movies.