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Nike Texans #99 J.J. Watt Red Alternate Men’s Stitched NFL Elite Jersey

Nike Texans #99 J.J. Watt Red Alternate Men’s Stitched NFL Elite Jersey

cheap soccer jerseys wholesale

Whether Twitter (and social media in general) makes athletes more popular or less popular is certainly up for debate — it’s probably both, depending on what exactly they use it for — but it is undeniable that without social media, the struggle for stories about these players during “down times” on the sports calendar would be very, very real.

Personally, I like Twitter the most when it is honest and a real reflection of who the athlete is. That would explain why the topic of Arian Foster contending that he could take down a wolf with his bare hands overtook my national radio show on Sunday night cheap soccer jerseys wholesale:

For the record, I had multiple calls from Alaskans to my show saying that Foster is absolutely nuts (duh!), one of them even citing the pounds per square inch that a wolf deploys when shredding an object with its fangs (wolf analytics!). It was a fun topic to spend kicking around, as it took us to a place where eventually callers were trying to figure out which deadly animal they would stand the best chance of beating with their bare hands. (Most prominent answer — NONE.)

Arian Foster may no longer be a Texan, but as long as he’s on Twitter, he lives on in our minds, hearts, souls and laptops.

Fast-forward to Monday night, and Texans defensive end J.J. Watt. Peruse Watt’s Twitter timeline, and over the past several weeks it’s largely retweets from fans who bought tickets to his charity softball game (May 13, Minute Maid Park, tickets available at jjwfoundation.org) and retweets of combine/draft accolades for his younger brother, T.J. Watt, who is thought to be a second-round pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.

There are no bold proclamations of how he could destroy a wolf with his bare hands (Fact: If any athlete could, it’s a healthy J.J. Watt), and there are absolutely zero political statements (Why do you think J.J. Watt is so damn popular?). Hell, it took Watt’s girlfriend, Houston Dash star Kealia Ohai, to change HER Facebook status and profile picture for the world to learn they were officially a couple!

But every now and again, J.J. Watt has a solid take on something sports-related. On Monday night, he tweeted this…

We know that youth sports and after-school activities are a passion for J.J. Watt, as his foundation benefits numerous school systems to help them provide equipment and resources to conduct sports and activities. We also know that Watt grew up playing every sport under the sun. The freaking guy is good at hockey, for God’s sake!

As a parent of three sports-playing kids myself and a daughter who runs track and cross country at the collegiate level, I couldn’t agree with Watt’s take more. The trend that’s taken kids who love and have the athletic wherewithal to play multiple sports over different seasons down to specializing in one sport year-round is unfortunate and, oftentimes, unseemly.

For one, these are different lessons to be gleaned from playing different sports — universal lessons in teamwork and sacrifice, but also specialized lessons in strategy and use of different muscle groups. I’m a firm believer that being able to have substantial experiences in many things is better than inundation in one thing. (The Bill O’Brien Versatility Theory in play!) Second, playing different sports often avails kids to sport jerseys wholesale different groups of people and friends. There is nothing bad about that.

But more to the point that I think Watt was driving at, in the unsavory specialization realm, kids and parents begin to brush up against the lunatic fringe of parents and coaches (and even the slimeball outer fringe when you begin to get into handlers in high school). A lot of specialization is a money grab by “private coaches” planting dreams of stardom down the road in the heads of kids and parents, a vast majority of whom end up on the scrap heap (simple math — only so many people get to the levels that these coaches brag about on their clientele page).

It’s why I don’t watch the Little League World Series on TV, quite honestly. There’s just something a little weird about watching a bunch of sixth graders from around the world getting the Major League treatment on ESPN, knowing full well that, in 2017, a lot of these kids are probably being asked to play baseball and ONLY baseball by delusional parents. Hey, maybe my abstaining from watching it makes me the lunatic. Whatever.

But back to the original point…yes, J.J. Watt! Totally agree! Play lots of sports, kids. Dream big. Work hard. Hunt greatness. And for the love of God, do NOT flip any 1,000-pound usa wholesale jerseys tires.

Those who bet — or didn’t and wish they had — on Leicester City

Those who bet — or didn’t and wish they had — on Leicester City

Jerseys on Leicester City

It is the summer of 2015.

The Premier League is gearing up for a new season and the oddsmakers are crunching numbers in their London offices, coming up with the first future odds that they hope will lure bettors to wager on teams for the next campaign.

Near the bottom of the 2014-15 standings were the Foxes of Leicester City, in their first year back in the Premier League after an 11-year absence. Thanks to winning seven of their last nine games, they were saved from relegation.

“They escaped by the skin of their teeth, and all signs for us had them pointing towards relegation again for this season,” said David Williams of Ladbrokes, a betting company whose roots can be traced back to 1886.

Bookies try to come up with odds to get people to bet on this sorry team, which was entering its 48th season in England’s top division. Leicester’s best finish was as runner-up in 1928-29.

So Ladbrokes sets the odds of the Foxes winning the 2015-16 title at 5,000-1. Ladbrokes’ biggest competitor, William Hill, concurs wholesale jerseys.

(For comparison, if you ever thought Kim Kardashian would become president of the United States, you could have gotten those odds for 1,000-1.)

The 5,000-1 odds on Leicester are available through August, with Ladbrokes taking 47 bets at the highest odds while William Hill wrote 25 bets.

Below is the story of seven people — from Tom Hanks to a 39-year-old carpenter — who all have tales to tell about their brush with Leicester City’s unbelievable championship season.

The bettors
Leigh Herbert

Herbert is a 39-year-old carpenter who attended his first Leicester City game in the late 1980s. Immediately, he was hooked.

Like many teams, Leicester’s recent history has been marked by promotion and relegation, the coming up and falling down common to soccer teams, when every season is cheap wholesale jerseys free shipping a fight to stay relevant.

Despite the temptations to bet — there are betting shops with kiosks everywhere you look in Leicester’s city center — Herbert never really was tempted, except for his annual wager each year on the Grand National, a steeplechase horse race that takes place in Liverpool.

But what he heard on Aug. 5, 2015 was just too tempting: He was told the Leicester City team was 5,000-1 to win the title. So that night, he downloaded William Hill’s app to his phone, funded the account and put one pound on the bet.
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Moments later, he erased the one pound and replaced it with a five-pound bet ($7.31 using today’s exchange rate).

Little did he know that quick thinking could change his life cheap soccer jerseys wholesale.

“I was a bit drunk at the time,” Herbert now admits. “So no, of course I didn’t think they were actually going to win the league.”

As the season goes on, Leicester City is playing well. By Christmas, the Foxes have somehow lost only one of their first 17 matches (a 5-2 defeat to Arsenal on Sept. 26). They are the best team in the league.

On Feb. 6, after a shocking 3-1 victory at Manchester City, fans start a new chant:

“We’re gonna win the league, we’re gonna win the league, we know you don’t believe us, we know you don’t believe us, we’re gonna win the league!”

Herbert couldn’t believe the position he was in. He was in line to win $36,500.

It was around that time that Herbert also started paying attention to something that showed up in connection to his bet on Leicester. It was called “cash-out value.”

It’s a common practice in England for bookies, if they face significant risk, to offer bettors a buyout plan. It’s an automatic program that offers a bettor the chance to immediately take the cash at a discount reflective of a bet’s current odds to pay out.

The cash-out numbers kept going up and Herbert kept resisting. That was until April 1. With Leicester up five points on second-place Tottenham with seven matches to play, William Hill was offering him $21,191 for his bet, which represented 58 percent of the total value if he won the bet at season’s end.

“I thought, at that point, we were going to win, but it was too costly to lose it all,” Herbert said cheap jerseys china wholesale.

So he made a deal with the bookmaker. He cashed out two pounds of his five-pound bet at a 55 percent payout. Herbert saw $8,300 pumped into his account.

He’ll use the money as a deposit on a house, he says, which he’ll now buy before he marries his fiancée, Kerry.

With Leicester clinching the title, Herbert will get another $21,918 for a total payoff of $30,218, or a return on his investment of more than 425,000 percent over a 270-day period.

And he says he doesn’t regret the $6,332 he left on the table from making the first deal.

John Micklethwait

Every year for about two decades, John Micklethwait put down a 20-pound bet on his Leicester soccer team. He even had a date to remind him just in case he forgot – Aug. 11, which is his birthday. If he hadn’t made a bet by then, he’d walk to a betting parlor in London and take care of it.

Micklethwait actually won a couple times, when Leicester became champion in the lower leagues, but the winning payouts weren’t anything to brag about. The losing tickets usually found a spot on the wall behind his computer at The Economist, where he was editor-in-chief.

Leicester’s rise to the top of the Premier League this season has been a treat for Micklethwait.

“I couldn’t be happier, other than having 100 grand in my pocket too,” he said.

You see, Micklethwait didn’t put a 20-pound wager on his Foxes this year.

He was hired as editor-in-chief of Bloomberg News in February 2015, and when Aug. 11 came and went, it wasn’t as easy for him to walk somewhere and place a bet. He was now living in New York, where sports betting isn’t legal.

So Micklethwait let it go, even as he started hearing about Leicester’s long odds. The first time he heard 5,000-1, he admits, he did the math wrong — figuring his mistake cost him 10,000 pounds. But as Micklethwait followed his team with passion — he went to four games, despite the long distance — he came to realize his job move cost him 100,000 pounds ($146,000).

Tom Hanks

Wait, what?

At the premiere for his latest film, “A Hologram For The King,” Hanks told a reporter that he was feeling less down about his relegated Aston Villa club because he placed a 100-pound bet ($146) on Leicester to win at the beginning of the season.

Pressed by the reporter on the red carpet, Hanks backed off a bit, saying, “Maybe I did, maybe I didn’t.”

Hanks’ publicist, Michelle Margolis, told ESPN she couldn’t get us closer to the answer, but if Hanks did do it — we suspect it was a joke — it would be the single largest bet at the 5,000-1 odds.
Karisma Kapoor

In the first week of August, the 20-year-old Kapoor and her family were discussing Leicester’s season, the team’s recently hired manager — Claudio Ranieri of Chelsea fame — and, of course, the tempting odds.

“We got to ‘Why not put a couple pounds on it?'” Kapoor said.

So she and her Aunt Simmi put down a pound each ($3 total) to win a potential 10,000 ($14,600).

She said she started to think it could become reality when Leicester emerged at the top of the table in December, but said she only recently started thinking about what she’s going to do with the money.

“I will save a bit,” Kapoor said. “I’ll use some to go on holiday and I’ll buy my brother Champions League tickets.”
Unknown Internet bettor

On the exact same day Kapoor placed her bet, so, too, did a man who risked 50 pence (73 cents) on the Foxes on the Ladbrokes app. But three days later, he inexplicably cashed out, after the team won its first game of the season. The move cost him more than $3,600.

“We tried to console him,” Ladbrokes’ Williams said. “He hung up on us twice.”

John Moss

Moss attended his first Leicester City game with his father after the elder Moss returned home from World War II.

Since then, he has been a fan of the Foxes and has been known to bet on the action.

So in July, Moss was given 2,000-1 odds by Betfred shop manager Neil Samways and bet one pound that Leicester City would win it all.

Even though Betfred had shorter odds than the other sports books, Samways thought Moss was crazy. On the slip he wrote “Pigs Might Fly.”

“As we were winning more games, I would ask him if he had seen any flying pigs lately,” Moss said.

Like the others who bet on the Foxes, Moss said he didn’t expect to get back his money, thinking, at best, the team would finish in fourth place usa wholesale jerseys.

How is he spending his money? He’s taking his 23rd trip to Las Vegas and is going to roll it over.

Gary Lineker

Lineker, the man behind BBC’s famous “Match of the Day” and the 1986 World Cup Golden Boot winner, has been associated with Leicester City his entire life.

He grew up as a fan of the team and spent nine years playing for the Foxes, including his youth career.

He didn’t necessarily put his money down on Leicester, but did agree to risk his body if the Foxes won the title.

“YES! If Leicester win the I’ll do the first MOTD of next season in just my undies,” Lineker tweeted to his more than 4 million followers in mid-December.

“I’m in good shape,” Lineker recently told the Radio Times. “For an old bastard. I’ll probably work out for two weeks beforehand, very, very hard.”

Don’t worry too much about Lineker. He’s making money off the whole deal. His sponsor, Walker’s Crisps, put him on billboards as the potato chip company counted down to the title.