Mahmoud Abdul-Raef, Abdul-Raef, Big3
Aug 24, 2018; Brooklyn, NY, USA; 3 Headed Monsters coach Gary Payton and Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf (7) prior to the start of the Big 3 consolation game against Tri State at Barclays Center . Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Sports Betting Tips With Chris Sheridan Episode 16: Tommy Sheppard on Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf

Episode 16 of the Sports Betting Tips podcast, featuring veteran NBA journalist Chris Sheridan and SiriusXM host Noah Coslov, is now available on podcast platforms. This episode features guest Tommy Sheppard, assistant general manager of the Washington Wizards.

In this episode, our hosts talk about Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf, athletes’ activism, the 2018-19 Eastern Conference picture, and Manu Ginobili. Listen to the full episode below.

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Abdul-Rauf’s Protest

The conversation begins with a focus on Abdul-Rauf, whom Sheppard worked with on the Denver Nuggets. Back then, Sheppard was working in public relations. Sheppard says Abdul-Rauf, who received ridicule for his decision not to stand for the Star-Spangled Banner, was “Colin Kaepernick before Colin Kaepernick.”

The year was 1996, though, and times were different.

“There was no such thing as social media,” Sheppard says. “I came into my office after a shootaround and there were 200 messages on the answering machine I had to listen to. So that takes you back in time. He’s a very special person and I think he’s a transformative figure.”

Sheppard spoke highly of Abdul-Rauf. Per Sheppard, Abdul-Rauf never wanted his protest to affect his teammates. The executive believes the former LSU star would be treated differently if he conducted his protest today.

“The best thing about it to me is that we’ve evolved to now where there’s a platform (social media) … it was very one-sided,” Sheppard says.

The East

Our hosts also discuss the East, which Sheppard believes will be competitive this season.

“I really believe, sincerely, that the East is wide open,” Sheppard shares. “Boston has tremendous talent. All the pressure in the world is on them, because they should be the best team in the East, according to everybody.”

Chris asks about Dwight Howard, and Sheppard says the veteran big man was “perfect” at his price point.

“Our players are excited,” Sheppard says of the team adding the three-time Defensive Player of the Year. “They really wanted this to happen … we don’t need him to be the No. 1 option.”

Later in the show, Chris and Noah discuss Manu Ginobili’s storied career. Listen to the full episode by hitting play above, and be sure to subscribe on your podcast platform of choice.

About Aaron Mansfield

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Aaron Mansfield is a freelance sports writer. His work has appeared in Complex, USA Today and the New York Times. Mansfield is a PhD candidate at UMass Amherst.

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