Trail Blazers beat Grizzlies in play-in, earn first-round series with the Lakers Lakers practice early hoping to answer all questions Clippers coach Doc Rivers said the juxtaposition became powerfully clear as he knelt on the court for the anthem.“The national anthem took two minutes,” he said. “There were guys that needed towels and things to get under their knees. Yet someone kneeled on another human being’s neck for eight minutes. That’s nuts when you think about it.”Only one player, Jonathan Isaac of the Orlando Magic, has so far openly declined to take part in the kneeling protests. He cited religious beliefs following his team’s opening game with the Nets as a reason not to kneel.NBA stars show out as fans; LeBron wants to watch, tooThe NBA’s finest showed out Thursday night during Lakers-Clippers, and not just those on the court: Damian Lillard, Carmelo Anthony and DeMar DeRozan were among the handful of stars attending the game as fans.Any player can request a seat a day prior to a game on the campus app. There’s limited seating depending on the venue, but otherwise it’s an open invite.The Lakers are close to clinching the Western Conference top seed after beating the Clippers on Thursday, so there might be a lot less anxiety for the remainder of the seeding games with a little more free time. James said he might fill it with live games.“I love if you get an opportunity to watch the game live,” James said. “We don’t have much time throughout the course of a regular NBA scheduling before the COVID stuff. It’s a pretty good dynamic. Like I said, it’s a big AAU feeling for grown men and I’m just going to try to take advantage of it.”Related Articles AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersWhile Kaepernick initially received many rebukes for showing signs of disrespect to the flags or the military, James said he hoped that understanding had evolved and people could widely see why Kaepernick began protesting in 2016 — now that more issues of race had come to light.“You go back and look at any of his postgame interviews when he talked about why he was kneeling, it had absolutely nothing to do about the flag, had absolutely nothing to do about the soldiers, the men and women that keep our land free,” James said. “He explained that and the ears were uncomfortable. People never listened. They refused to listen and I did.”But James has not physically kneeled in any protest before Thursday night. James acknowledged that it’s been a learning process for him, and that he didn’t want to act before he was “fully educated.”Kaepernick’s gesture of kneeling has gained more support than ever in the last two months, particularly in light of George Floyd’s death when a Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck. Even the NFL has begun to pedal back on public stances that it required its players to stand for the anthem. The NBA has a rule to that effect, but commissioner Adam Silver declined to enforce it on Thursday night and it’s believed he won’t as the season progresses and more demonstrations occur.James was among the players who shared a side-by-side image of Kaepernick and police officer and accused murderer Derek Chauvin, and he also criticized quarterback Drew Brees for speaking out against kneeling during the national anthem. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. >> By taking a knee on Thursday, LeBron James was among the NBA players, coaches, staffers and referees who hoped to make a statement against systemic racial problems in America.In doing so, he followed the path of a man he’s long said he’s admired: Former San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who was pushed out by the NFL for his protests of police violence against Black people.“I hope we made Kap proud,” James said. “I hope we continue to make Kap proud.”James has supported Kaepernick for several years, notably wearing a shirt in warm-ups with the blackballed quarterback’s name on it, then saying during the 2019 All-Star Weekend that he figuratively kneeled with him. Trail Blazers, Grizzlies advance to NBA play-in game; Suns, Spurs see playoff dreams dashed Players are now allowed to intermingle between hotels, a process that feels as safe as ever after the NBA and NBPA announced Wednesday that no new player cases of coronavirus had seeped into the bubble. James called it one of the silver linings of the new arrangement, which players have grown accustomed to.Denver’s Paul Millsap said he wasn’t sure if he’ll attend games live, but he was watching the NBA tip off in his hotel room.“You could feel the atmosphere, you can feel the significance of what teams are trying to accomplish,” Milsap said. “I got excited watching the games yesterday. … As hoopers, it doesn’t matter the scenario or the scene. True hoopers are gonna get out and get after it.” Lakers, Clippers schedules set for first round of NBA playoffs How athletes protesting the national anthem has evolved over 17 years
A spectacular thing about comics is that everything and anything can be layered. You can mix and match tons of unusual genres that feel natural, and it burst into some awe-inspiring storytelling on the page. This is something that Cold Spots does so fluidly. It introduces you to a drama, noir type story, but then slaps you with supernatural and paranormal elements as well. It comGeek had the pleasure of talking with writer Cullen Bunn and artist Mark Torres about their upcoming series, experiences with the paranormal and what lurks inside this small town with a lot of secrets.Thank you guys so much for talking with Geek. We were so excited about Cold Spots and after reading the first issue was a ride. It’s bone-chilling and haunting but mysterious and suspenseful. Can you guys tell us a little bit about this new series?CULLEN BUNN: Well, I’m glad you liked it! COLD SPOTS is the story of a little girl who makes ghosts grow restless, the supernatural cold that follows these ghosts, and the estranged father who is trying to rescue her from a group that means to use her gifts for ill purposes. It’s a gothic horror story. It’s a thriller. It’s got hints of cosmic horror. And it’s also the story of a father who has really screwed things up and maybe, in the face of overwhelming terror, has been given a chance to set things.MARK TORRES: COLD SPOTS is an onion. On the surface, it’s a story that deals with the supernatural, but as you peel away each layer, you discover elements of good ol detective noir, cosmic horror, drama, etc…but at its core, it’s about family. How its meaning varies from person to person, and the extents we will go for it.via Image ComicsCullen, you’ve written some badass horror comics over the years, and you’re not slowing down one bit. Where did the idea for Cold Spots come about? What inspired you to tell this story?CULLEN: I’ve always loved ghost stories. A ghost may be the horror story icon that frightens me most. I am fascinated by the idea of cold spots manifesting in the presence of ghosts, and I wondered what kind of cols the presence of HUNDREDS of ghosts might bring about. That was the initial idea for what would become this gothic horror tale.Mark, your art is moody, yet placed in this psychological thriller noir, especially with your heavy inks. What were some of your inspirations in drawing the comic? Did you have anything cool, besides Cullen’s dope script to put you in the mood for it? Also, what inspired the design for the cover? It’s absolutely gorgeous.MARK: Thanks. I tend to play around with my approach, flexing the style to what I feel will complement the story, not overpower it. But by nature, my soul belongs to the deep dark. You can only imagine my excitement reading Cullen’s pitch…being able to jam horror, noir, drama, and some sci-fi. I avoided consuming ghost related materials as I didn’t want to get any subconscious influence, nor comparisons. Just tapped on my accumulated love & knowledge of the genre. If there was one external factor, it’d have to be Music. Always critical in setting my engines to the right mood.For the covers, my design thought is more in the veins of Album Art & Paperback Novels. Symbolic, not flashy, and more emotional. I want them to seduce people’s eyes and tease their souls.via Image ComicsThis story has such mysterious and complex characters that you can see their story, but it’s still so hidden. This is the case with Dan, our protagonist, it seems like he carries a massive history behind him and one that’s going to becomes a little weirder in the future. Can you guys tell us a little more about him and what a little bit about his role in all of this? CULLEN: Dan is not a good person. At least, he’s not a good person at the beginning of our story. He has done the wrong thing for the wrong reasons many times. Now, though, he has discovered that he has a daughter he knew nothing about… and she’s in grave danger. That kind of revelation can change a person. Dan sets out to find the girl. Admittedly, his initial motivation is financial (he’s being paid by the girl’s grandfather to find her), but over the course of the story, it becomes something more. Dan’s starting to experience a connection to someone, unlike anything he’s ever felt before. And that scares him more than ghosts.MARK: Dan’s a major prick. He’s the type of person you could be having drinks with one second, and find yourself brawling with the next. He’s a selfish SOB, but he’s about to discover there’s more to him as he gets engulfed in the rising horror.via Image ComicsOne thing about Cold Spots that’s intriguing is the brilliance of the supernatural touch you guys put into it. This could easily be another noir type story, but you absorbed an entire town in this unexplained mystery. What was it about the phenomenon cold spots that made you want to engulf a whole town in it instead of a small area? (I love paranormal stuff and said “WHOA A WHOLE TOWN?!”) Are you both anything paranormal/supernatural buffs? CULLEN: I love tales of ghostly happenings and paranormal activity. I’m always looking for ways to tell those kinds of stories in comic book form. With this, though. I really wanted to push the boundaries. I liked the idea that apparitions are appearing throughout the town and a supernatural winter is following. I also liked the idea that this supernatural winter might be spreading and intensifying. If that’s the case, what does that say about these restless spirits? What does that mean for the world as a whole?MARK: I like that you picked that out reading just the first book…the town IS a character. One of my signifiers for great horror is when it actually tells the story of the people living in that world. And how they deal with various challenges…the Human Condition. The monsters, the blood, and death, are just dressing. In COLD SPOTS, we follow Dan on his “quest,” meet his family, and the family behind all his woes, and how that multiplies to a dread that vibrates to other people…the town. And possibly soon, the world. And if it hasn’t been obvious yet, I am indeed a huge supernatural nut. Something super impressive and a surprise that readers will absolutely enjoy is the music that accompanies each issue. It honestly made the experience so gripping, moody and intense. Your first track is the theme song for the series. What made you guys want to include music with the experience? What were some of the inspirations behind what you did with the music? It sounds so much like Twin Peaks mixed with the style of Mac Quayle. MARK: I held the pages hostage until Cullen agreed for me to do a soundtrack! Haha. Music has always been a constant in my life. It’s a force that defies age, sex, race, religion. It can immediately take you to a time or place…it can influence your emotions with a switch…much like the story, we’re telling in COLD SPOTS. Since I also dabble in Music, I felt it would be a perfect opportunity to share that passion and give readers a fuller (more haunting) experience. Inspiration-wise, just Cullen’s scripts. The first track which is also the main theme, REUNION, is a direct translation of how I felt reading issue 1. via Image ComicsDid you guys ever have a BIG supernatural experience? If you didn’t, what supernatural experience would you like to have? (Good, bad, indifferent, all ghouls are welcome).CULLEN: I’ve had a few experiences that MIGHT have been supernatural in nature… or might have just been my imagination or a bad dream. Once, when I was pretty young, I saw this roiling white mist floating near the ceiling in the corner of my room. This light seemed to flow into me. The next thing I know, I awake maybe 15 minutes later to hear my mom calling for me. She said she’d been calling for a few minutes. Now, was I napping and dreaming? Or did something weird really happen? I remember that mist clearly, though. It didn’t feel like a dream.MARK: I was very sickly as a child, on and off conditions, that no prescription seemed to remedy. It was until my mom decided to enlist the aid of a faith healer (locally referred to as an “albularyo), that we found out dwarves were slowly trying to take me. After marking all corners of the house with the blood of a white chicken, dripping some on me, and offering a buffet…my health and energies instantaneously improved, and I’ve never suffered major illnesses since.There’s a few more, but I’m glad they didn’t stick with me. Though I still tend to smell…out of nowhere…whatever flowers, or candles, were at a funeral, after days and years even, and immediately remember the person who passed distinctly. Earlier this year, with my late Grandma.via Image ComicsThank you so much again for talking with us. What other projects are you guys working on that our readers should look for? Also, where can our readers find you (via website, social media, etc.)? CULLEN: Thank you! For readers who love horror, I would certainly suggest checking out my other Image book, REGRESSION, which is a surreal tale of past lives and terror. I’m also writing BONE PARISH for Boom. That is a supernatural crime story that deals with a vastly different take on ghostly encounters.MARK: Outside of Cold Spots, I dabble in designer toys, as well as a solo EP album that I hope (ITCH!) to release this year. Folks can check out my Instagram (@towersmarked) for previews & update on all those craziness. Thank you guys for the fun interview, and for having us & Cold Spots. Cheers!COLD SPOTS will be available on ComiXology and your local comic shops on August 22nd!