Dont’a Hightower Opts Out of Season Citing Concern for Newborn and Mom

Major League Baseball is back, the NBA is about to, and the NFL is skipping preseason games and entering training camp. But as COVID numbers continue to surge across the country, it is yet to be seen whether these games will go on long enough to finish their seasons.

MLB is already encountering major problems, even after shortening their season to a mere 60 games. Several members of the Marlins have gotten sick, causing panic in league offices and giving commissioner Rob Manfred another black mark. Meanwhile, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is sitting pretty as his 300+ bubbled-up players in Orlando continue to show no cases despite continual testing.

The NFL is next up, and they’ve mostly been quiet as training camp looms. But some players are opting out, with the New England Patriots, recent Cam Newton signers, facing some of the most high profile defections.

The latest is Dont’a Hightower, as reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter. The linebacker is a team captain and three-time Super Bowl winner, but he’s also a dad who had a baby a mere two weeks ago, and he’s opting out of the season out of concern for his family’s health.

Hightower joins Patriots tackle Marcus Cannon, safety Patrick Chung, RBs Brandon Bolden, and Danny Vitale, and offensive linemen Najee Toran in sitting out the season. Not only does Hightower have a new baby, but his mother is also at higher risk due to her diabetes, as he shared on his Instagram a couple of years ago.

According to CNN, Hightower and other players who choose to skip this season will receive a $150,000 salary advance, with players who are “high-risk” getting an additional bonus, as per an agreement between the league and the player’s union. There is no deadline yet set for when players have to decide if they’re opting out, but as September approaches, things are getting more urgent.

The Patriots already lost Tom Brady to the Buccaneers, and with multiple players choosing safety over football, their path to the playoffs, and another AFC East title, is going to be rougher than ever. If the season actually happens.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A message to #PatsNation 🙏🏾✊🏾

A post shared by Donta Hightower (@_boomtower) on

35+ ‘Breaking Bad’ Quotes That Are The Very Epitome Of The Show

One, maybe twice, in a lifetime, a network will happen upon a show that is pure genius. A good show will hook its claws into viewers from the very first episode, much like shows like Friends or Mad Men did. It’ll offer something relatable but also offer an escape. Breaking Bad was just that show. On the surface, it was a about a dude named Walter White (Bryan Cranston) cooking meth. Something most Americans can’t relate to and probably look down on. In the very first episode, though, we met a very different man. We met a middle-class science teacher with cancer, crushing debt, with a healthcare system and government not keen on helping him. We met a man who only wanted to provide a decent life for his family and not be a burden. Now that is definitely relatable.

From there, we watched Walt learn to utilize the scientific knowledge he already had and use a connection with a hoodlum named Jesse (Aaron Paul). Soon, Walt was running a drug empire. Did he do some seriously sketchy shit? Yes, sir. But, he did it in the name of love… and survival. (Uh… mostly.) Who can fault a guy for that? Breaking Bad was a raging success and when it ended, many viewers were left absolutely crushed. Years later, we’re still talking about those final moments.

And, of course, years later we’re still quoting the show. If you’re looking to go down memory lane, these are some of our favorite quotes from Breaking Bad.

Perfect Breaking Bad Quotes From Walter White Himself

1. “I have spent my whole life scared, frightened of things that could happen, might happen, might not happen, 50-years I spent like that.”

2. “Finding myself awake at three in the morning. But you know what? Ever since my diagnosis, I sleep just fine.”

3. “What I came to realize is that fear, that’s the worst of it. That’s the real enemy. So, get up, get out in the real world and you kick that bastard as hard as you can right in the teeth.” –

4. “Well, technically, chemistry is the study of matter. But I prefer to see it as the study of change.”

5. “Is this just a genetic thing with you? Is it congenital? Did your… did your mother drop you on your head when you were a baby?”

6. “You clearly don’t know who you’re talking to, so let me clue you in. I am not in danger, Skyler. I am the danger. A guy opens his door and gets shot, and you think that of me? No! I am the one who knocks!”

7. “I mean, it’s just… it’s the constant, it’s the cycle. It’s solution, dissolution, just over and over and over. It is growth, then decay, then transformation. It is fascinating, really.”

8. “Right now, what I need is for you to climb down out of my ass. Can you do that? Will you do that for me, honey? Will you please, just once, get off my ass? You know? I’d appreciate it. I really would.”

9. “Walter Jr., you’re my big man. There are going to be some things that you’ll come to learn about me in the next few days. But just know that no matter how it may look, I only had you in my heart. Goodbye.”

10. “I did it for me. I liked it. I was good at it. And, I was really… I was alive.”

11. “I have lived under the threat of death for a year now. And because of that, I’ve made choices.”

12. “Jesse, you asked me if I was in the meth business or the money business… Neither. I’m in the empire business.”

13. “We tried to poison you. We tried to poison you because you are an insane, degenerate piece of filth and you deserve to die.”

14. “Say my name.”

15. “There is gold in the streets just waiting for someone to come and scoop it up.”

16. “We’re done when I say we’re done”

17. “If you don’t know who I am, then maybe your best course would be to tread lightly.”

18. “Fuck you and your eyebrows.”

19. “Smoking marijuana, eating Cheetos, and masturbating do not constitute plans in my book.”

Breaking Bad Quotes From Jesse Pinkman… Bitch!

20. “Did you know that there’s an acceptable level of rat turds that can go into candy bars? It’s the government, jack.”

21. “Ah, like I came to you, begging to cook meth. Oh, hey, nerdiest old dude I know, you wanna come cook crystal? Please. I’d ask my diaper-wearing granny, but her wheelchair wouldn’t fit in the RV.”

22. “We’re all on the same page. The one that says, ‘If I can’t kill you, you’ll sure as shit wish you were dead.’”

23. “Some straight like you, giant stick up his ass, age what, 60? He’s just gonna break bad?”

24. “Even the government doesn’t care that much about quality. You know what is okay to put in hot dogs? Huh? Pig lips and assholes. But I say, hey, have at it bitches ’cause I love hot dogs.”

25. “Yeah, Mr. White! Yeah, Science!”

26. “This is my own private domicile and I will not be harassed… bitch!”

Our Favorite Saul Goodman Quotes From Breaking Bad

27. “Scientists love lasers.”

28. “Congratulations, you’ve just left your family a second-hand Subaru.”

29. “Sending him on a trip to Belize.”

30. “I once told a woman I was Kevin Costner and it worked because I believed it.”

31. “Hey, I’m a civilian! I’m not your lawyer anymore. I’m nobody’s lawyer.”

32. “I’m not saying it’s not bad. It’s bad. But it could be worse.”

33. “The fun’s over. From here on out, I’m Mr. Low Profile. Just another douche bag with a job and three pairs of Dockers. If I’m lucky, a month from now, best-case scenario, I’m managing a Cinnabon in Omaha.”

34. If you’re committed enough, you can make any story work.”

More Breaking Bad Quotes From Everyone Else

35. “The moral of the story is…I chose a half measure when I should have gone all the way. I’ll never make that mistake again. No more half measures, Walter.” – Mike Ehrmantraut

36. “You are not the guy. You’re not capable of being the guy. I had a guy, but now I don’t. You are not the guy.” – Mike Ehrmantraut

37. “Just because you shot Jesse James, don’t make you Jesse James.” – Mike Ehrmantraut

38. “This kicks like a mule with its balls wrapped in duct tape!” – Tuco Salamanaca

39. “You know what Walt? Someone needs to protect this family from the man who protects this family.” – Skyler White

Olympian Says She Felt Her Late Dad’s Presence During Medal-Winning Race

Winning a medal at the Olympics is a dream come true, but it must be hard if you have a Dad-sized hole in your life. Katie Zaferes represented the United States well in the women’s triathlon, as she made the podium with a bronze medal finish. Maybe more than the medal, what made the moment special was feeling her late dad’s influence during her race.

She told reporters after the event that she made it midway through the triathlon when she saw a rainbow above her in the sky. To her, she knew what it was.

 

“I just gave a little, ‘Hi, Dad.’ I just feel  like that was him. I felt him,” she told reporters after the event. “I feel like he’d be so happy.”

Of course he would. He would be thrilled! Or is thrilled, wherever he is now. Before he was a rainbow in the sky helping his daughter win an Olympic medal, Bill Zaferes was responsible for introducing his daughter to the sport. He recently passed away in April. Zaferes said she had trouble in her competitions after he died, but that she definitely felt his presence during her race.

On Father’s Day, she posted a tribute to her late dad and his influence on her life. She said Father’s Day was the first time she ever did a triathlon, and it was something she did with him.

“I thought I was doing it for my dad, only to find out many years later it was all a scheme to get me interested in the sport,” she wrote.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Katie Zaferes (@kzaferes6)

The two ended up doing many more triathlons together, culminating in Katie representing the US on the podium. But she will always remember running events with her dad. “He always had fun and came out with a story no matter what the scenario. He made me so proud.”

There is no doubt that she made him even prouder.

Hospital Turns Newborns Into Tiny Olympians

The Olympics are all what you make of it. If you get really into watching them, whether it’s for a specific sport (hockey! Gymnastics! Curling!?!), or just the thrill of the event, it can be a memorable experience. Of course, some people take it to the next level, like St. Luke’s Hospital in Kansas City.  These medical pros had a much-deserved laugh when they broke out the crocheted medals and Olympic attire for the babies born during the games.

Take anything relevant culturally and add it to cute newborns and you have a hit on your hands. Every parent probably feels like their newborn deserves a gold medal anyway. Although with our third, it’s my wife who deserves the medal, since that baby was pretty much a bowling ball.

A nurse said they planned to do this in order to bring some joy to families giving birth during the pandemic, and when the games were postponed, they held onto the idea. “I hope this is something families and babies can look back on over the years as something that made their delivery during the pandemic even more special and brought hope and encouragement,” she wrote.

Delivery is an emotional time, so honestly, everyone involved probably deserves a gold medal. That includes the dad because even the coaches get medals in team sports.

Ryan Reynolds Hosts First Xbox NPC Awards to Promote ‘Free Guy’

Video game NPCs (Non-Player Characters) rarely get the love and attention they deserve.  They provide us with story, items, and are just there if we want to find directions.  When you think about it, a video game would feel pretty empty without them.

In honor of those that await us to return quest items to them, Xbox and Ryan Reynolds are hosting the first (and according to Reynolds, probably last) Xbox Game Pass Non-Player Character Awards in association with Reynolds new film Free Guy.  The movie releases in theaters on August 13th and is all about an NPC named Guy who realizes he’s actually in a video game.  If anyone should be an advocate for all those NPCs that don’t get enough recognition, it’s Reynolds.

Among the video game NPC nominees are Parvati Holcomb (The Outer Worlds), Samuel Hayden (Doom Eternal), Chief Trader Mollie (Sea of Thieves), and Guy (Free Guy) himself.  The polls close on August 3rd, so if you’re interested in showing your support for all those lovely NPCs, you can vote down below.

Hawkeye Meets Hawkeye in First Look at Next Live Action Marvel Series

It’s clear now the MCU is going to use Disney+ content to expand their universe, and introduce the next wave of Avengering. Loki revealed Jonathan Majors as the next big bad (or rather, a “varient” of him), while the upcoming  What If…? series will likely have more to say about the new Infinity Stone level “thing” – the multiverse.

EW has given us the official first look at Jeremy Renner and Hailee Steinfeld in Hawkeye, debuting this fall. The series is about Clint Barton, aka Hawkeye, and Kate Bishop, the young, gifted fan of the archer who wants to follow in his footsteps. (And their dog.)

Kate Bishop is a fan favorite character from a comics, and fans have been eager to see her appear ever since we saw a clip of Clint training a young woman in the first Endgame trailer. That turned out to be his blipped daughter, but after years of rumors and hints, Disney finally confirmed Steinfeld will indeed take on the mantel of the Young Avenger.

“[Kate is] a 22-year-old kid and she’s a big Hawkeye fan,” Renner said. “She has a wonderfully annoying and equally charming manner about her, because she’s such a fangirl of Hawkeye. The relationship grows from that, but the biggest problem for Clint is Kate Bishop and the onslaught of problems that she brings into his life.”

No word yet on the full plot of Hawkeye, but *SPOILER ALERT FOR BLACK WIDOW INCOMING*  we do know that Florence Pugh’s Yelena, the new Black Widow, might be on the hunt for her sister’s best buddy. While we wait to find out more, Renner is busy getting his young costar acclimated to the Marvel universe.

“Outside of acting in the thing, I was protecting her and giving her the CliffsNotes on how it goes with this kind of filmmaking: Green screen, superhero life, all that stuff,” Renner says. “I just wanted to protect her, because there’s a lot of physical stuff. She’s a wonderful actress, a wonderful human, and I can’t wait to see all the cool stuff that she’s able to do.”

Neither can we! Hawkeye premieres on Disney+ on November 24th.

Adam: So Many Hats

“My husband grew up as an only child with no immediate family close by, so it was really just him and his parents. I think that really contributed to him wanting to be a dad and to have more than one kid.

When we first started dating, he told me he’d like a baseball team of kids! We aren’t at that status but we have just welcomed our fourth healthy babe into this world.

There are so many hats my Adam wears (US Army infantry Cpt., graduate student, husband) but the top hat of them all is the one he wears as a dad. Watching him learn and grow into it has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

Our children look to him with perfect confidence in his ability to fix anything — from a skinned knee to a broken toy — and more importantly they know he will always take the time to do so. He loves teaching them, showing them, helping them grow and always takes that precious time to do so. He has learned to be a different father for all their different personalities and I hope he knows how special that is and that it’s not easy!

So often our fathers are pushed to the background of the parenting picture and I just want to give all the awesome dads out there a shout out. We see you, appreciate you and know your worth!”

– Morgan Nicholson

Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email [email protected]

Incredible Dad Reflexes Save Toddler from Water Slide Disaster

Dad strength and dad reflexes are real, and it’s always awesome to see them flexed in a major way. One dad is being praised for his incredible save when his toddler wandered onto the bottom of a backyard waterslide.

Behind the camera, Mom captures dad, mid-slide, pushing the older kids out of the way and twisting his body to snatch up the toddler and keep her safe from the onslaught of older siblings.

Posting the video to her TikTok, mom @RachKreitz got MILLIONS of views from people enjoying seeing dad superpowers in action.

@rachkreitzPosting again because they took it off for harmful acts but I see naked women everywhere 🤣 ##CompleteMyLook ##fourthofjuly ##american ##freedomrings♬ original sound – rachkreitz

This is impressive on a lot of levels, but it is something every dad can relate to. Once you have that third kid, it takes a lot of work to let the older ones do older kid things.  You never know when the toddler is gonna be a toddler and wander onto a slip ‘n slide.

The Olympics are eating up most of the sports media coverage, but if you want a true feat of athletic excellence, this video has it all. He’d get a perfect 10/10 from dad judges, both for the difficulty of the water slide and for the way he managed to move the bigger kids out of the danger zone AND safely secure the toddler while nailing the landing.

Give the man a gold medal, or at the very least, a cold beer.

Bob Odenkirk Update After On-Set Collapse: “He’s Going to Be Ok,” Says Son

On Monday Variety reported that actor/comedian/writer/national treasure Bob Odenkirk had collapsed on the set of his hit show, Better Call Saul, and was rushed to the hospital. After almost two nervous days without any more information, Odenkirk’s son, Nate gave the world a big sigh of relief.

The younger Odenkirk updated the legions of concerned fans and well wishers on his dad’s condition with a simply worded tweet that told all of us that “he is going to be okay.”

The news was met with incredible and overwhelming relief from millions around the globe. The tweet shared by his son was liked nearly half a million times and shared far and wide.

His representation followed with a statement of their own, saying Odenkirk was in stable condition following a “heart-related incident.”

“He and his family would like to express gratitude for the incredible doctors and nurses looking after him, as well as his cast, crew, and producers who have stayed by his side,” the statement said. “The Odenkirks would also like to thank everyone for the outpouring of well wishes and ask for their privacy at this time as Bob works on his recovery.”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Aaron Paul (@aaronpaul)

In a true testament to how much people love the guy, well wishes were unanimous across social media. It may not sound like much, but when was the last time everyone agreed on anything? But for one day, everyone on the internet came together to assert that Bob Odenkirk rules and that we all wanted him to get better ASAP.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Bryan Cranston (@bryancranston)

Former costar Bryan Cranston said earlier that day he had been feeling “anxious” and told fans to “please take a moment in your day today to think about him and send positive thoughts and prayers his way.”

Odenkirk made his name to a broad audience on Breaking Bad, but he is beloved in the comedy world for his work on Mr. Show With Bob & David, small parts in Curb your Enthusiasm and Arrested Development, an amazing sketch on I Think You Should Leave With Tim Robinson, and a wealth of other bit parts, cameos, walk-on roles and appearances. Thankfully we can look forward to more to come.

‘The Simpsons’ Team Really Wants the Rock to Be Friends With Lisa

The Simpsons are a television institution and one of the most important shows of all time. It feels like everyone has been a guest on the show, but there’s star they REALLY want to get: everyone’s favorite Jungle Cruise Captain/mineral-nicknamed movie star, The Rock.

In a Comic-Con panel, Yeardley Smith, the voice actor behind Lisa, asked the rest of the writers and producers on the panel if they could “please” have an episode with The Rock already. One of the writers reportedly even came up with a basic story outline for Lisa befriending The Rock.

It’s honestly surprising that The Rock hasn’t popped in at some point in 32 years of The Simpsons. Showrunner Al Jean said The Rock would probably do it if he was watching the panel, and several others put the plea in the universe to get word back to him.

“I think it would be really good for your career,” Smith joked. “..If you need a little boost, you know.”