By Ben Natter, Rebecca Schwartz, and Matt Wolff
Court Upholds Ban on Russian Athletes
On Thursday, an appeals court upheld the ban on the Russian track and field team. Only the two Russian track and field athletes who currently live in the United States are allowed to participate in the Rio Olympics.
National Football League Concussion Doctor Retires
For many years, the National Football League (NFL) relied on the knowledge of Dr. Elliot J. Pellman, who has marginal training as a neurologist. As scientific evidence continued to show the connection between head trauma and certain brain diseases, Dr. Pellman refused to recognize the truth.
Independent researchers accused Dr. Pellman, former team doctor for the New York Jets, of promoting "junk science" and consistently putting NFL players at risk by diminishing the results of concussions. The NFL is trying to repair its image, and Commissioner Roger Goodell stated in a memo to the league: "We thank Dr. Pellman for his dedicated service to the game and for his many contributions to the NFL and our clubs and appreciate his willingness to aid in this transition over the next few months."
Retired players accused Dr. Pellman, his colleagues, and the NFL of minimizing the effects of head trauma and doing virtually nothing to protect the players. In addition, former players brought a class-action against Dr. Pellman and his colleagues, who "spent hundreds of millions of dollars" to settle.
In 1994, Dr. Pellman spearheaded the Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Committee, which was supposed to focus on and analyze every NFL player head injury from 1996 to 2011. However, the New York Times's research revealed that at least 100 concussions were excluded from Dr. Pellman's analysis.
Rio de Janerio Laboratory reinstated by the World Anti-Doping Agency After Brief Suspension
The Rio de Janerio lab that was suspended by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) last month is clear to test blood and urine samples for the Rio Olympics. WADA's director general, Olivier Niggli stated that: "Athletes can be confident that anti-doping sample analysis has been robust throughout the laboratory's suspension and that it will also be during the Games."
Roger Ailes's Tenure Ends
Fox fired Roger Ailes after investigations into allegations of sexual harassment were made from at least six women. Mr. Ailes will receive $40 million dollars as part of a settlement agreement with the network. Rupert Murdoch will be the interim president until Fox can find a successor. A statement was released that: "We hope that all businesses now understand that women will no longer tolerate sexual harassment, and reputable companies will no longer shield those who abuse women."
Pokémon Go Expands as Alarm Grows Around the World
The widely played app Pokémon Go has expanded to 26 more countries just this week, as security and religious authorities around the world expressed fear about the app. In Sauda Arabia, Pokémon Go is deemed "un-islamic." Egyptian officials believe that the game should be banned because of the risk of sharing images of security sites. Other countries have also expressed concern that the app could lead to potential security issues.
"Pokémon Go is the latest tool used by spy agencies in the Intel war, a cunning despicable app that tries to infiltrate our communities in the most innocent way under the pretext of entertainment," said Hamdi Bakheet, a member of Egypt's defense and national security committee in Parliament, according to a report on Al Jazeera."
"Sphere for Plaza Fountain" Returns to the World Trade Center
The powerful sculpture "Sphere for Plaza Fountain" by Fritz Koenig is returning to the World Trade Center. The sculpture will be reinstalled but not "...on the exact spot it occupied on Sept. 11, 2011." The monumental sculpture will be transported by the Port Authority to Liberty Park, which overlooks the memorial. Koenig, now 92, exhibited exuberance about the transportation of the piece.
Italian Tennis players Indicted for Match Fixing
Three Italian tennis players are being investigated for fixing tennis matches. The Italian Federation also suspended Marco Cecchinato, the 143rd ranked player in the world, for 18 months and fined him $44,000.
W.N.B.A. Players Fined
Players on the New York Liberty, Phoenix Mercury, and Indiana Fever were fined by the W.N.B.A. for wearing T-shirts during shoot around on Thursday night that raised awareness for killings by and to police. Many spoke out against the fines, expressing that: "It's unfortunate that the W.N.B.A. has fined us and not supported its players."
Christopher Correa, Former Cardinals Executive, is Sentenced to Four Years for Hacking the Astros's Database
In January, Christopher Correa, former scouting director of the St. Louis, plead guilty to five counts of unauthorized access to a protected computer from 2013 to 2014. On July 18, 2016, a federal judge sentenced Correa to 46 months and ordered him to pay $279,038. Authorities first learned about the data breach in June 2014, and found that Correa was able to view 118 pages of confidential information, including notes of trade discussion, player evaluations and a 2014 team draft board that had not yet been completed. Federal prosecutors said the hacking cost the Astros's about $1.7 million.
Suit by Haruki Nakamura, Former NFL Player, Puts Concussion Spotlight on Insurers
Haruki Nakamura, who played for five seasons with the Baltimore Ravens and the Carolina Panthers, is suing Lloyd's of London to force it to honor a $1 million policy. In August 2013, the former defensive back retired after sustaining a severe head injury during a preseason game with the Panthers. Despite being eligible for the NFL Player's Retirement Plan's "total and permanent disability benefits," Lloyd's denied Nakamura's separate insurance claim for failing to show that the concussion he sustained in 2013 had "solely and independently" led to his permanent disability.
Synchronized Swimmers Find Danger Lurking Below Surface: Concussions
Recently there has been an increase in awareness of head injuries in synchronized swimming. Concussions in synchronized swimming have become more prevalent because swimmers have tried to amass points by swimming in a closer formation and are performing additional moves in each routine, including throwing teammates in the air. Many swimmers are unaware that they even have a concussion, since many of the symptoms are similar to swimming upside down, or holding one's breath for long periods of time.