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Gossip Column: ESPN Sacks Basketball Legend Paul Pierce Over Controversial Instagram Live Video & More

Paul Pierce - Gossip Column
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  • Attreyee Khasnabis April 8, 2021
  • 3 Minutes Read

The Boston Celtics legend Paul Pierce was recently fired from his position as an NBA analyst by sports broadcasting company ESPN for live streaming on Instagram a scene from his poker home game. Pierce could be seen drinking in the video and was surrounded by barely clothed women. It seems that the Walt Disney-owned company’s decision to sack Pierce had more to do with the basketball star live-streaming the video himself rather than someone else putting it up.

Just days after Mike Postle dropped his $330 Million defamation lawsuit, defendants Veronica Brill and Todd Witteles have publicly commented on the move. With Postle voluntary filing a motion to dismiss, it will make it easier for Brill and Witteles to press their respective anti-SLAPP motions for legal charges.

Indian esports streamer Manoj Kashyap is another known personality who came under fire this week for making sexual assault threats in a YouTube video referencing the 2012 Delhi Nirbhaya gang-rape case. He later apologized for his comments in a three-minute-long video.

 

Basketball Star Paul Pierce Gets Fired From Analyst Job ESPN After Posting Racy Poker Home GameVideo

Basketball legend Paul Pierce’s career with the sports broadcasting channel ESPN has come to an end. The former Kansas Jayhawk All-American was fired from his job as an NBA analyst after he posted a raunchy Instagram Live video over the weekend. The video featured Pierce in a room with exotic dancers.

Paul Pierce
Paul Pierce

 

The video showed the 43-year-old Pierce in a drunken state with scantily clad women, who could be strippers, around him and his friends while they played poker. He also posted a photo of himself smoking what appeared to be marijuana.

 

The 2008 NBA champion has been a part of ESPN’s commentary team since he retired from basketball in 2017. Pierce was an analyst for the network on multiple NBA shows. This included the studio show, “The Jump,” and its pregame show “NBA Countdown.”

Pierce, who went by the nickname “The Truth,” won an NBA championship with the Celtics in 2008.

Despite his enthusiasm for poker, Pierce doesn’t have a recorded tournament cash to his name. He has been spotted at several international events and had even built a massive stack in the $10,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Championship at the 2013 WSOP but busted before the money. He also fell a few spots shy of the money in the 2014 WSOP Main Event. Pierce was also featured in the 2019 Poker After Dark cash game show on PokerGO.

According to Front Office Sports’ Michael McCarthy, Pierce’s former employers weren’t too happy after the famous analyst went live to his followers in a questionable state.

 

The original clip has since been deleted, but it’s understood Pierce filmed himself smoking and drinking while partying in a room with exotic dancers. According to a report by the New York Post, ESPN’s decision had more to do with Pierce himself sharing these videos. If they were leaked by someone else, the company might have overlooked the incident.

Pierce seemingly addressed the situation in a tweet shortly after the news broke. In the video, Pierce simply chuckles to himself with the caption: “Big Things coming soon stay tuned make sure you smile.”

 

Veronica Brill & Todd Witteles Comment on Mike Postle Dropping the $330 Million Defamation Lawsuit

Earlier this week, news had come through that alleged poker fraud Mike Postle had voluntarily dropped the $300 Million defamation lawsuit against Veronica Brill and a group of defendants. While his reasoning behind this move is still unclear, the two defendants, Brill and Todd Witteles, came out publicly with their own opinions on the move.

Mike Postle
Mike Postle

 

The official case dismissal can only happen following the April 20 hearing that will take place in Sacramento, California, Superior Court. However, Postle’s voluntary withdrawal of the defamation lawsuit will make it much easier for the presiding judge Shama H. Mesiwala to grant the anti-SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) motions that Brill and Witteles had filed against him. This means that Postle will now have to pay Brill’s and Witteles’ legal fees.

Brill uploaded a summary of the recent developments of the case on her YouTube channel and even went on to state that, “From my perspective, it was a scare tactic. It was like, ‘Everyone needs to shut up, and no one is allowed to talk about me [Postle] anymore.’”

Veronica Brill
Veronica Brill

 

Check out her video right below.

 

Brill was the lead defendant among 12 others in the defamation lawsuit against Postle. She confirmed that entrepreneur Bill Perkins helped finance her legal expenses.

Witteles, Brill’s fellow defendant, brought his defense lawyer, Eric Bensamochan, on an episode of his podcast “PokerFraudAlert.” Outlining the case’s basic framework, Witteles asked his lawyer to give a more detailed legal take on the matter.

Todd Witteles
Todd Witteles

 

Bensamochan said, “I’m sure that our decision to acknowledge the lawsuit early, and vigorously defend threw a wrench into whatever plans Mr. Postle had. Oddly enough, from last October [when the case was filed] until today, nobody else was served at all.”

Bensamochan further stated that the lawsuit was filed against “12 defendants, high-profile public companies, big names, and it just sat there. Had we not stepped forward and had not Veronica stepped forward, it would still be out there. I have to believe at this point that that was the desire. To just be able to say, ‘Well, I’m suing Negreanu and Haralabos (Voulgaris) and ESPN and Todd and everybody else.”

The fact that nobody seemed interested in the case is very telling, Bensamochan said. “The long and short of it is that Postle failed to retain counsel,” Bensamochan added.

 

Indian Esports Streamer Threatens Sexual Assault in YouTube Video With Nirbhaya Rape Reference; Apologises Later

Indian esports streamer and owner of Team Mahi (earlier known as Velocity Gaming), Manoj Kashyap, threatened sexual assault to his viewers, with an uncalled-for reference to the Nirbhaya rape case, during a live stream on his YouTube channel.

Manoj Kashyap
Manoj Kashyap

 

Kashyap, who goes by the screen name ‘TM Sentinel,’ referred to the 2012 Delhi gang rape and murder as a threat to how he would retaliate against those who bring up the recent Valorant cheating controversy. The cheating scandal happened in February when a Valorant pro player Abhay’ Xhade’ Urkude of team Paratroops, was banned by Riot Games for admittedly using wallhacks.

 

Since his original stream, Kashyap has offered an apology in a three-minute YouTube video where he explains that he “lost control” and “his emotions got the better of him.”

 

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