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NEW ORLEANS — Devin Booker questioned the criteria after he didn’t finish in the top 3 in NBA MVP voting this season despite leading the Phoenix Suns to the league’s best record (64-18) by a wide margin. His Suns No. 1 jersey didn’t crack the top-10 selling NBA jerseys. And when media pundits discuss the league’s best players, the shooting guard who averaged 26.8 points this season and led the franchise to the Finals last year is rarely mentioned.

Could Booker very well be the NBA’s least appreciated star?

Suns head coach Monty Williams, who views Booker as a top-5 player, believes so.

“It’s where we are in our basketball society,” Williams told Andscape following the Suns’ first-round series-clinching 115-109 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans in Game 6. “There is not an appreciation for skill. He is one of the most highly skilled players in the league.

“He has taken a program from 19 wins to 60-plus wins in three years. No one recognizes it for what it is. He is part of the best backcourt in the game, and still people don’t recognize it. I can’t explain it, but people just aren’t giving him his due.”

While Booker, 25 and in his seventh season, believes that he “should’ve been one of the guys” in the running for MVP, he says it doesn’t bother him and he is focused on the bigger picture.

“I have a whole different shift of the mindset right now,” Booker told Andscape. “Regular season is fun and dandy. Especially with the winning record we have, breaking a franchise record this season. Especially from what I’ve seen. I’ve been at the bottom of the league. Flipping that, being at the top, that is what I am focused on. …

“The thing for me is the legacy stuff. Being at halftime of the [2022] All-Star Game and watching the Top 75 [players of all time] come out and the reading of their names. Like, ‘Five-time All-NBA. Six-time All-NBA.’ I don’t want to lose that. I think about legacy sometimes also. And if I earned it, I think I deserved it.”

Being slighted is nothing new for Booker.

Booker was not a starter for the University of Kentucky during the 2014-15 season. Once he got to the NBA, Booker made three All-Star teams, but was selected as an injury replacement during two of those games.

It wasn’t until Booker led the Suns to an 8-0 record during the 2020 NBA bubble before the addition of Chris Paul that he began getting respect as an elite player. Adding Paul, a 12-time All-Star, largely helped Booker and the Suns advance to the 2021 NBA Finals. Booker is averaging 23.5 points for his career, but Paul’s superstar status understandably snatches a big portion of the Suns’ spotlight.

Said Williams: “He is at a place now where it doesn’t even bother him anymore. He knows the more he wins and plays on a big stage, people will have to acknowledge that he is a top-5 player in the league.”

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Devin Booker said missing three of the Phoenix Suns’ six first-round playoff games due to a hamstring injury was “probably the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do.”

Chris Graythen/Getty Images

What should attract more respect for Booker was his ability to return from an injury in the postseason much earlier than expected.

After scoring 31 points in 25 minutes, Booker suffered a mild hamstring strain in the third quarter of a 125-114 Game 2 loss to the Pelicans on April 19. The expectation was the 6-foot-5, 206-pounder would be out for two to three weeks. With Booker out, the Western Conference’s top seed entered Game 6 with a 3-2 series lead over the surprising and gritty Pelicans.

Booker missed seven games in December with a strained left hamstring and has been sidelined by other injuries during his NBA career. But missing out on postseason games was a “whole different beast” for Booker.

“Watching the last three was tough, including the one I went out in,” Booker said. “It was probably the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. … Especially after seeing them get two games on us. It’s definitely something we didn’t want to happen. But we managed it and made [the Game 6 win] happen.”

Williams told Andscape that Booker actually lobbied hard to play in the Suns’ 112-97 win in Game 5. Williams said Booker was told by the medical staff to give it one more game before pushing for a return. Booker had been working on the floor with Suns first-year assistant coach Jarrett Jack, a former NBA guard. Jack told Andscape that he noticed some “pop to his legs” from Booker during two workouts last Wednesday.

Jack told Williams that Booker appeared to grow stronger every day, and that he thought he could play at a healthy and competitive level in Game 6. The Suns’ medical staff agreed, which led to Booker’s return much faster than anticipated.

“I was honest with Coach,” Jack said. “Is he [the] Devin Booker [who] is going to go for 30 [in Game 6]? I wouldn’t sign off on that. Is he playable? Very much so. It was not only me identifying it, it was me working in concert with our support staff, me leaning on them with what I see with my basketball eyes and them telling their medical opinion.”

Said Williams: “Book knows it’s a huge thing to put him back out there. He doesn’t want to put himself in harm’s way and he understands it’s a tough decision for us. I’m sure he didn’t want to put us in a tough spot.”

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Since losing in six games to the Milwaukee Bucks in the NBA Finals last season, Devin Booker (right) said he’s “shifted that energy from losing the Finals in a good way.”

Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images

Booker scored 13 points in the Suns’ series-clinching Game 6 victory. He appeared rusty, scoring just two points in the first half as the Suns trailed 58-48 at halftime. Suns reserve swingman Cameron Johnson, who started the previous three games for Booker, started the second half.

The halftime lineup change was planned. Williams expected to play Booker for 24 minutes. Booker ended up playing 32 minutes, and hungered for more.

“I thought we were going to have a fistfight over there with the look he gave me,” Williams said after Game 6. “We had already talked about it, but we had to stick with the plan because it was going to be easier to finish with him.”

Booker wasn’t his typical All-Star self, finishing 5-of-12 from the field and missing five of six 3-point attempts to go with five rebounds and three assists. But Booker played during the final stretch, which included a key 3-pointer with 1:42 remaining that gave the Suns the lead for good over the Pelicans.

“We don’t win without him,” Williams said. “He hit a big shot down the stretch with the pull-up on the left side, with a 3 in the corner. The one time he posted up [Pelicans guard Jose] Alvarado, he got to his shot. It was textbook Book.”

Booker said he planned to “rest and get his body right” during the three days off before starting their second-round series against the Dallas Mavericks on Monday in Phoenix. He averaged 23.7 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.3 assists in three games against the Mavericks this season.

“I trusted my body. Great training staff put me in this situation,” Booker said. “I was more than confident. I didn’t feel anything. I’ve played through the injury before while I was playing. But through all the test and trials, I didn’t feel anything.”

Perhaps the best way for Booker to get his just due is by leading the favorite Suns to their first championship after losing in six games to the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2021 NBA Finals.

“I have shifted that energy from losing the Finals in a good way,” Booker said. “It’s a good segue in the locker room to talk about and motivate. We talk about the details of the game. Even this [Pelicans’ series], offensive rebounding doesn’t sit with us well because it’s the reason why we lost [games]. Winning a championship is something I want more than anything in my life. …

“I dreamed about [the Finals] as a kid. But now it’s a reality and I have to make it happen.”

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By: Marc J. Spears
Title: Devin Booker wants his due … but not as much as an NBA championship The Suns All-Star guard has experienced the highs and lows of the NBA. Now, he’s focused on legacy: ‘I dreamed about [the Finals] as a kid.’
Sourced From: andscape.com/features/devin-booker-wants-his-due-but-not-as-much-as-an-nba-championship/
Published Date: Mon, 02 May 2022 12:25:46 +0000

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Baller Awards

5th Annual Society of Composers & Lyricists Awards Announces Nominees in Film, TV, and Visual Media

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The Society of Composers and Lyricists (SCL) announced today the nominees for the 2024 SCL Awards. Many of the contenders reflect the Oscar shortlist that was also announced today. The nominees include songwriters Billie Eilish, Olivia Rodrigo, Lenny Kravitz, Diane Warren, and Jon Batiste who earned spots on the Oscar shortlist for Best Original Song. […]

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By: Clarence Moye
Title: 5th Annual Society of Composers & Lyricists Awards Announces Nominees in Film, TV, and Visual Media
Sourced From: www.awardsdaily.com/2023/12/22/5th-annual-society-of-composers-lyricists-awards-announces-nominees-in-film-tv-and-visual-media/
Published Date: Fri, 22 Dec 2023 13:45:13 +0000

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Baller Awards

2024 Oscars: Best Original Song Predictions

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With the 2024 Oscars shortlists now out, it’s clear that “Barbie” will have a significant presence in the Best Original Song category.

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Title: 2024 Oscars: Best Original Song Predictions
Sourced From: www.indiewire.com/awards/predictions/2024-oscars-best-original-song-predictions-1234910982/
Published Date: Thu, 21 Dec 2023 22:30:00 +0000

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Deontay Wilder Net Worth: Career Earnings, Biggest Fight Purse & Endorsement Deals Of ‘The Bronze Bomber’

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Deontay Wilder Net Worth: Career Earnings, Biggest Fight Purse & Endorsement Deals Of ‘The Bronze Bomber’ – originally posted on Sportslens.com

Here is everything you need to know about the single hardest puncher in boxing and the former world heavyweight champion, Deontay Wilder. This includes his net worth, career earnings and endorsement deals.

Deontay Wilder Net Worth

Deontay Wilder has been a professional boxer since his debut back in November 2008. He has been boxing consistently for over 15 years straight now in the pro ranks, earning more and more money as his career has progressed up to world level.

The 1985-born boxing superstar is one of the most fearsome punchers the sport of boxing has ever seen. Deontay Wilder’s boxing record consists of 43 wins – 42 of which have come via knockout. The only man to go the distance with ‘The Bronze Bomber’ was Bermane Stiverne, who Wilder then knocked out in a round in their rematch.

As of December 2023, it is reported that Deontay Wilder’s net worth is somewhere in the region of $30 million (source: Celebrity Net Worth).

Of course, given the fact the Alabama man is supremely wealthy, he likes his fair share of luxury items too. Wilder has acquired real estate, expensive jewelry, flashy cars and various other assets that have contributed to his riches.

Wilder reportedly has eight kids in total from various relationships, including one with his current girlfriend Telli Swift. Evidently a fair amount of Wilder’s earnings in the ring is used on providing for his big family and loved ones. Be sure to see Deontay Wilder’s net worth continue to grow for the remainder of his career, as long as that lasts.

Deontay Wilder

Deontay Wilder Career Earnings

After 46 professional boxing fights, Deontay Wilder’s biggest fight purse is reported to have been around $28 million (source: Forbes). This was reportedly how much ‘The Bronze Bomber’ earned for his rematch bout with Tyson Fury back in February 2020.

Wilder went into the fight as the marginal favorite with the best offshore sportsbooks, given that he was still the reigning champion following his draw with Fury 14 months prior. Despite getting conclusively knocked out in Round 7 of the fight, this still remains the biggest purse of Wilder’s career to date.

Deontay Wilder has reportedly earned a total sum of around $95 million in his professional boxing career from his debut up to now. This is right up there with the likes of heavyweight rivals Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury, and is more than the likes of Ryan Garcia, Gervonta Davis and Terence Crawford.

The 2008 Beijing Olympic Bronze Medallist has been earnings even figure purses ever since he became world heavyweight champion back in January 2015. Of his last 10 fights, just one has been less than seven figures (Washington – $900k). In fact, Wilder has earned around $80 million just from his last five fights.

See the full table below for a detailed breakdown of the purses Deontay Wilder has received for his last 10 fights. All in all, it is fair to say that the 38-year-old isn’t short of a dollar or two. His net worth, salary and fight purses will continue to rise as his career rolls on at world level.

Deontay Wilder Fight Purses (Last 10):

Fight Fight Purse
Deontay Wilder vs Robert Helenius $10 million
Deontay Wilder vs Tyson Fury 3 $12 million
Deontay Wilder vs Tyson Fury 2 $28 million
Deontay Wilder vs Luis Ortiz 2 $20 million
Deontay Wilder vs Dominic Breazeale $10 million
Deontay Wilder vs Tyson Fury $10 million
Deontay Wilder vs Luis Ortiz $2 million
Deontay Wilder vs Bermane Stiverne 2 $1.4 million
Deontay Wilder vs Gerald Washington $900,000
Deontay Wilder vs Chris Arreola $1.4 million

Deontay Wilder purse info per Sports Payouts & Sporting News

Deontay Wilder Endorsements & Sponsorship

Although the vast majority of Deontay Wilder’s earnings comes from prize fighting, he also earns an extremely lucrative sum of money outside of the ring. These vast endorsement deals from outside of the ring are a big player in boosting Wilder’s net worth and salary.

The 1985-born boxing phenom’s biggest endorsement deal as of today is his partnership with Everlast. Wilder has shown great loyalty to Everlast for several years during his boxing career, and still sports their boxing gear to this day. He also regularly uses Everlast boxing gloves in the ring for his world title fights, as well as during training camps.

Some of Deontay Wilder’s other endorsements include his partnerships with PureKana CBD, Raising Cane’s and IHC Crypto. There is not much else known about Wilder’s endorsements and sponsors outside of his career as a boxer.

All in all, Deontay Wilder’s various sponsorships certainly help boost his net worth. Per Forbes, he reportedly earns an estimated $500,000 per annum through endorsements. Ultimately though it is punching people in the face for a living that pays ‘The Bronze Bomber’ the most money.

Be sure to claim the various sports betting apps bonuses and boxing free bets available on the SportsLens site ahead of Deontay Wilder’s next fight.

From Sportslens.com – NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB News, Rumors & Betting Picks

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By: Paul Kelly
Title: Deontay Wilder Net Worth: Career Earnings, Biggest Fight Purse & Endorsement Deals Of ‘The Bronze Bomber’
Sourced From: sportslens.com/news/deontay-wilder-net-worth-career-earnings-endorsements/
Published Date: Wed, 20 Dec 2023 10:59:17 +0000

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