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Lakers are not expected to go after Kevin Durant, who is focused on Kyrie Irving, according to report

Reports have indicated all offseason that the Lakers would not trade Anthony Davis (Author: Gardener)

Kevin DurantKevin Durant and LeBron James have been arguably the top two players in the NBA for more than a decade, but following Durant's trade request, could they finally have a chance to team up? A source close to the situation for The Athletic has put the odds of the Lakers offering Anthony Davis in a Durant package to "zero," and without Davis in the picture, the Lakers just don't have enough for the 2014 MVP do. The Lakers were interested in Irving even before he settled on his contract, and now that he appears to be on the trading bloc, a package built around Westbrook and several future first-round picks seems doable. The question is how willing the Lakers are to give up their unprotected first-round picks in either 2027 or 2029. In the past, they've refused to give up those picks to move Westbrook, but with Irving as a star in his prime, it could be an exception. Pairing Irving with his former teammate in James and a player he almost teamed up with as Celtic in Davis would give the Lakers the most talented trio in the NBA. The Irving situation is unlikely to resolve itself until Durants does. If the Nets can't find an acceptable trade for Durant, they could ultimately choose to keep him, or if there's a team willing to trade for both together, that would be something the Nets could explore as well. But for now, the Lakers appear to have a real shot at landing Irving. They might not get the best member of the nets, but they might get what they wanted all along.

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Lonnie Walker and Troy Brown, who just agreed to sign with the Lakers, are also apparently best friends

The Los Angeles Lakers have reportedly settled with two former first-round picks, Troy Brown Jr. and Lonnie Walker IV. Brown and Walker represent a change of pace in the Lakers' approach to the offseason. In recent seasons we have seen the organization… (Author: Gardener)

LakersThe Los Angeles Lakers have reportedly settled with two former first-round picks, Troy Brown Jr. and Lonnie Walker IV. Brown and Walker represent a change of pace in the Lakers' approach to the offseason. In recent seasons we've seen the organization target aging veterans, including Carmelo Anthony, Trevor Ariza, Dwight Howard and Rajon Rondo. On the other hand, Brown is only 22 years old while Walker is only 23 years old. It's a smart investment in two former first-round picks who are still young. But it's also an investment in two best friends, according to Basketball News content director Alex Kennedy. Lonnie Walker and Troy Brown Jr. are best friends and are now joining the Los Angeles Lakers. I love these signings. — Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) June 30, 2022 Brown was selected 15th overall in the 2018 NBA draft, and shortly thereafter Walker heard his name at 18th overall. In 2016, while still playing at the AAU level, the two contestants actually traveled to the Bahamas (along with other future NBA players like Wendell Carter Jr., Jarred Vanderbilt, and PJ Washington). Both players were later named McDonald's All-Americans and played on that roster together in 2017. You can check out one of their highlights from the game below, if you're interested you can check out a recent video of the two players training together at Los Angels. Around 5:30pm they start playing HORSE. You won't be surprised to learn that both players will be represented by Klutch Sports. According to Kennedy, the two players recently considered hosting a podcast together. Hopefully they get the chance as teammates with the Lakers. A Nintendo fan reportedly spent $40,000 on stock to ask about F-Zero

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Lakers get younger with Lonnie Walker IV, Troy Brown Jr. to open free agency

After a bet on an older, veteran-laden roster spectacularly backfired last season, the Lakers made strides toward a younger, more athletic supporting cast around their stars on day one of free agency. The Lakers added Lonnie Walker IV and Troy Brown Jr., two former first-round picks looking to rebuild their value, on one-year contracts, according to The Athletic. Also the team... (Author: Gardener)

Lonnie Walker IVAfter a bet on an older, veteran-laden roster spectacularly backfired last season, the Lakers made strides toward a younger, more athletic supporting cast around their stars on day one of free agency. The Lakers added Lonnie Walker IV and Troy Brown Jr., two former first-round picks looking to rebuild their value, on one-year contracts, according to The Athletic. The team also agreed on a two-year deal with center Damian Jones, who played for the Lakers in the 2020-21 season, with a player option for the second year. Juan Toscano-Anderson, a 6-foot-6 winger fresh from a title run with Golden State, also agreed to a minimum contract, Yahoo Sports reported. With Walker, 23, and Brown, 22, the Lakers are following the mold of their decision to sign Malik Monk last year - discarded first-round picks in the hunt for bigger deals next summer. With Jones, the franchise added a rim-running, defensive-oriented 7-footer who was a fan favorite after just eight games two seasons ago. Toscano-Anderson is a tenacious winger who fought his way into the NBA after playing internationally (much like his new head coach Darvin Ham) and offers versatility in a position where it's needed. While the Lakers' supporting cast became much clearer just a day after free agency began, the future of their stars — LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook — grew bleak as the entire NBA was rocked by Kevin Durant's plea to be traded by the Brooklyn Nets to become . ESPN reported that the Lakers would likely continue to engage the Nets against Irving, which would almost certainly require them to find a third team to take on Westbrook's $47.1 contract. So far, the Lakers have been unwilling to include draft picks in compensation for trading Westbrook, whose supermax deal expires at the end of the season. The team can trade its first-rounders from 2027 and 2029 (most of its picks in the coming seasons are controlled by New Orleans due to the 2019 trade for Davis). If the Lakers traded for Irving and offloaded Westbrook, it would be a game changer for a team that failed to make the postseason at all in 2022. Irving is one of the most dynamic passers and goalscorers in the league, averaging 27.4 points and 5.8 assists last season for the Nets. Walker IV, the most expensive of the acquisitions (excluding the mid-level taxpayer $6.5 million), comes from a four-year stint in San Antonio, where he averaged 12 in 70 games (six starts) last season. scored 1 point. While the 6-4 walker shot just 31.4% from 3-point range last season, the Miami product has shot over 35% in his other three NBA seasons and could have a Monk-like player at just 23 with untapped potential. With career averages of 6.4 points and 3.8 rebounds per game, Brown's best contributions would most likely come on defense, where his 6-6 frame and 6-10 spread would come in handy in Ham's defensive system. Jones is a traditional center who won fans' hearts in 2021 when he played eight games for the Lakers and averaged 5.4 points while going 16-17 from the field. Jones, 27, spent last season with the Sacramento Kings averaging 8.1 points and 4.4 rebounds. Toscano-Anderson, 29, was a roleplaying player at Golden State for three years, where he averaged 4.8 points and 3.2 rebounds, but he became a fan favorite because of his local ties and gutsy style. Toscano-Anderson played professionally in Mexico before the Warriors signed him to a two-way contract. Many of the newcomers come from a familiar pipeline: Walker, Brown and Toscano-Anderson are all represented by Klutch Sports, the agency that counts Lakers stars James and Davis among its biggest clients.

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Lakers signs ex-Spurs wing Lonnie Walker IV for mid-level taxpayer exemption, per report

Walker has spent the last four seasons at San Antonio (Author: Gardener)

Lonnie Walker IVThe Los Angeles Lakers are signing former San Antonio Spurs guard Lonnie Walker IV to a one-year contract, according to Shams Charania. Walker was the No. 18 pick in the 2018 NBA draft and has steadily grown into a contributor for the Spurs over the past four seasons. After being used mostly off the bench for his first two seasons, Walker has started in 44 games over the past two years and averaged 11.7 points per game. Perhaps more importantly, his 3-point volume has steadily increased to an average of 4.9 attempts per game over the past two seasons. His career 34.3 3-point percentage isn't great, but he's played on a Spurs team that couldn't surround him with elite playmakers. That hasn't translated into consistent defensive production, however, and he'll need to buy in at that end of the floor if he's to fit into new coach Darvin Ham's defensive-first philosophy. In addition to Walker and Damian Jones agreeing on a deal early in free agency, the Lakers are also adding former Bulls and Wizards wing Troy Brown Jr., according to Charania. Like Walker, Brown is a first-round pick who still finds himself an NBA player. He's been a good defender in the past but he needs to work on his 3-point shot. In four seasons, Brown has hit just 33.7 percent of his appearance on just two tries per game. Passing the Lakers offensively means making more shots. After last season's roster struggled with age and injuries, the Lakers appear determined to balance the ages of their players in hopes of building a more complete team.

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Lakers signs ex-Spurs wing Lonnie Walker IV for mid-level taxpayer exemption, per report

Walker has spent the last four seasons at San Antonio (Author: Gardener)

Lonnie Walker IVThe Los Angeles Lakers are signing former San Antonio Spurs guard Lonnie Walker IV to a one-year contract, according to Shams Charania. Walker was the No. 18 pick in the 2018 NBA draft and has steadily grown into a contributor for the Spurs over the past four seasons. After being used mostly off the bench for his first two seasons, Walker has started in 44 games over the past two years and averaged 11.7 points per game. Perhaps more importantly, his 3-point volume has steadily increased to an average of 4.9 attempts per game over the past two seasons. His career 34.3 3-point percentage isn't great, but he's played on a Spurs team that couldn't surround him with elite playmakers. That hasn't translated into consistent defensive production, however, and he'll need to buy in at that end of the floor if he's to fit into new coach Darvin Ham's defensive-first philosophy. In addition to Walker and Damian Jones agreeing on a deal early in free agency, the Lakers are also adding former Bulls and Wizards wing Troy Brown Jr., according to Charania. Like Walker, Brown is a first-round pick who still finds himself an NBA player. He's been a good defender in the past but he needs to work on his 3-point shot. In four seasons, Brown has hit just 33.7 percent of his appearance on just two tries per game. Passing the Lakers offensively means making more shots. After last season's roster struggled with age and injuries, the Lakers appear determined to balance the ages of their players in hopes of building a more complete team.

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Kyrie Irving to the Lakers makes more sense than ever after Kevin Durant's trade request

Kyrie Irving's path to the Lakers has never been clearer. (Author: Gardener)

LakersThe Brooklyn Nets blow everything up. After refusing to give Kyrie Irving a long-term maximum contract extension, daring him to find another team that wanted him, and then watching him settle on his $37 million player option, the Nets received a trade request from Kevin Durant on Thursday. It blows up any carefully laid plans Brooklyn might have had and shakes the rest of the league as everyone tries to figure out if they can get KD to a four-year deal starting next season. The nets will trade Durant for the highest possible rate of return. Without a no-trade clause, he has no choice on the matter and half the league's teams would move heaven and earth to land him on a long-term contract. Before Thursday afternoon, Kyrie was a necessary evil for Brooklyn. But as long as he stayed, so did Durant, even if Kyrie was unhappy with how things were going. The nets have no incentive to keep Kyrie and all his baggage with them. In fact, they now have an incentive to ditch him to reset the locker room culture and get everything they can back for him so they stay competitive - a priority given they owe all of their picks to the Houston Rockets. This paves the way for Kyrie to land in Los Angeles alongside LeBron James in Lakers purple and gold. This was the most popular rumor in NBA discussion circles last week, as the Nets told the point guard he could try to find potential trade targets. The Lakers, of course, were very willing to play ball. But all they could offer is Russell Westbrook and a first-round pick that won't be awarded for five years. There's a very reasonable argument that putting down Kyrie, even at the expense of picking up Westbrook for a year, is the top priority after getting as much as you can for Durant. Kyrie would never come up with $30 million to sign with Los Angeles, but now he could have the best of both worlds. And really, the Lakers are probably the only team that wants him. Every other team in the NBA either doesn't want him or would have to bend over backwards to make the money work. But the Lakers? The Lakers are on a ticking clock and the only way to improve their team is to trade for Kyrie. They won't get Durant, and nobody else has the desperation to leave a star player like the Nets have now. Kyrie for the Lakers has never looked so likely.

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How Mavs' rookie views the draft night slide, refit with Luka Doncic

Jaden Hardy arrived at the Mavericks' practice facility on Tuesday for his first day of NBA life. But his first tour of the Design District with his mother, father and brother, as well as meetings with coach Jason Kidd, general manager Nico Harrison and other members of the Mavericks senior management team, gave the 19-year-old second-round winner a taste. Sturdy... (Author: Gardener)

MavsDallas Mavericks rookie Jaden Hardy speaks during a news conference Tuesday, June 28, 2022 at the team's Dallas training facility. Jaden Hardy arrived at the Mavericks' practice facility on Tuesday for his first day of NBA life. But his first tour of the Design District with his mother, father and brother, as well as meetings with coach Jason Kidd, general manager Nico Harrison and other members of the Mavericks senior management team, gave the 19-year-old second-round winner a taste. Hardy has visited Dallas before because his sister lives in Richardson, but this brief trip felt more meaningful. He came as the newest teammate to Luka Doncic and co., a G League Ignite product who spent his post-high school, pre-draft year developing against pros, and a former blue-chip recruit who Eager to prove his draft night, Chute gave no indication of his potential on the pitch. Hardy opened up about all of that -- and more -- in an interview with reporters on Tuesday, less than a week after the Mavericks traded two future second-round picks to the Sacramento Kings to get back in the draft and pick him at number 37. Hardy: “It was a lot of fun. I've stayed here a few times but this is the first time I've actually been able to get to the facilities and meet everyone. Just coming here and getting to know everyone was fun.” Hardy: “It still hits me, but I'm just super excited to be a maverick. Like I said, they're there for me and want me to be successful, so they can't wait to get to work.” Q: Where do you think you can help this team the most? Hardy: "I feel like with my game, I bring a lot of stuff with me. I feel like I bring three tier scoring, my ability to play, create for others and involve my teammates. I know it will start here defensively. That way I'll gain the coaches' trust, just be a better defender and just be able to learn from the vets and players that are already in the team." Hardy: "It means a lot to me. It feels like they really want to see me succeed. I'm super glad they caught me.” Q: What would you like to learn from Luka Doncic? Hardy: "What do I hope to learn from Luka? I haven't met him yet so I'm looking forward to meeting him and then just talking to him about basketball and talking about his journey and really just picking up new things from him. He's going into the league in a couple of years so he can ask him questions and really how he got to where he is now. Hardy: “There are a lot of players that I really like to see. I like Bradley Beal's game, James Harden, Damian Lillard to name a few.” Q: What were your thoughts on your possible match with Luka? Hardy: “I just come in and do what the team needs, I feel capable. Just all the tools I have for my game, being able to shoot and be creative, I feel like I could fit in really well with this team.” Q: How would you describe your game and how will you fit into the league? Hardy: “I would describe my game as really different. As a three-goal scorer, my ability to block shots from deep at high speed and I feel like I can create for my teammates - I love making plays and just being a defender. I feel like with all these tools I can fit in really well with this team. I feel like I can fit in well with the guys and meet them. I feel like I bring a lot of energy, young energy. I'm very happy to be here.” Q: What's the biggest improvement you'd like to make in your game as you acclimate? Hardy: "The biggest improvement I want to make to my game is to be an overall efficient player at this level and just improve my defense and just really be able to learn and be consistent." Hardy: "It will always be with me because I was last [in the green room], but it adds more fuel. I'm super excited to be a Maverick so I'm glad they got me and I can't wait to get to work." Hardy: "I've known Christian Wood for a few years now so that's my type . He's got his Vegas roots, plays at UNLV like we already knew each other so we played together a few runs a few years ago so he already knows who I am and we have a good relationship." Q : How do you think Christian fits into this team even as a newcomer to the Mavericks? Hardy: "I feel like his ability to be an outside shooter, his ability to be a pick and roll threat, catch lobs and stuff like that. I know that every day he will come and try to get better." Hardy: "It was just more of the fit I wanted. With college and going pro, I feel like I was ready to go pro and I feel like I would make the same decision if I had to choose it again today just because I was beating NBA levels -Talent play how I feel it will help me get better in the long run." Hardy: "I don't have a favorite movie, but I like action movies." Hardy: "I used to like Cinnamon Toast Crunch." Hardy: "My ability to play the Shooting the ball, I feel like that transfers right away, just that I can come in and be an outside shooter, take the pressure off Luka. When teams focus on him, they can fend off those outside shots.” Q: How were those conversations when you just met with Nico and Jason? They sat me down and focused on what I need to get better at as they see I fit into this team and really just move on from there. I'm just looking at the summer league and how they imagine I'm here. Hardy: “I think they're very cool. You are very open minded. They didn't sugarcoat anything with me, so I feel like I could speak to them on a personal level.” Q: For Mavericks fans that you haven't seen in the G League, is there a player that is similar to your game is modeled after? Hardy: "I mean, people used to compare me to Bradley Beal and Dame and James [Harden], but those are just comparisons. I feel like I have my own way of playing, my own style, so I can't wait to get out there and get on the court and compete against these guys and show them who I am.” Q: What did you do did you learn about your career as a pro in the G League that will help you in the transition now? Hardy: “What I learned in G-League is really how to be a pro. I take care of my body just by building good habits like staying in after a workout, getting those extra reps, being in the weight room every day. It just taught me how to be a pro and what it takes to be successful at that level.” Q: Did you notice that what you learned in the G League compared to what you what they learned in college now have an edge over other rookies? Playing in the G League is NBA-level talent. Like this year, I played in the G League against Jonathan Kuminga and Moses Moody, who were with the Warriors. So playing against these NBA-level talents who were just on a championship team is only going to make me better. I feel like playing an NBA level competition, it shows you what you need to get better at, and going into next season I feel like I have a chip on my shoulder. For more coverage of Mavericks in the Dallas Morning News, click here.

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Fans from all over the world descend on the city ahead of the band's highly anticipated concert

The concert was a long time coming after being canceled twice due to Covid (Author: Gardener)

CovidFans from far and wide flocked to Cardiff city center to see German heavy metal band Rammstein perform at the Principality Stadium. The hard rock band, who pull out all the stops on their show, head to Cardiff for an epic night on Thursday 30th June. Known for their very impressive stage shows, including fire and pyrotechnics, the German band Neue Deutsche Härte performs at the Fürstenstadion. The concert was a long time coming - it was originally scheduled to take place in June 2020 but was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, and a concert expected to take place a year later in 2021 was also cancelled. It has been reported that their recent show in Coventry could be heard as far as 11 miles away, meaning other parts of Cardiff can also enjoy the show. But for the people who attended the concert at the stadium, it was clear that the event meant a lot to them for many reasons. Alex Hewitt and Kitty Lambert are friends from Hull, Yorkshire. The pair had traveled to Dorset to stay with Kitty's father before heading to Cardiff on Thursday. Although it was a walking tour, the two friends were "very excited" to see their favorite band perform. "I was actually at the Coventry concert and I'm going to that one tonight," Kitty told WalesOnline. “The Coventry concert was really good. I stand for this one, I don't know how it will turn out as I haven't gotten up to a Rammstein concert in years.” They are the best band I've ever seen live - it's not just about the music , but about the experience. You will sometimes hear people say that in the past they went to their concert just because a family member or friend needed someone to go with them and they absolutely loved it - they may not be a fan of the music but they are absolutely delighted with the experience. My mum doesn't like being mental but she still comes to the concerts.” Friends Alex Hewitt and Kitty Lambert have traveled from Hull to see Rammstein in Cardiff on Thursday. But for Alex it was the first time she saw Rammstein perform live. "I've been a fan since 2018, so it's pretty new," she said. "For people who don't know anything about Rammstein, I would say it's German industrial heavy metal music. The only thing I can compare it to is when you put your phone in a washing machine, sing over it and it's on automatically tune in - that's what it sounds like! Shadows of the stadium, the trio have just met and are said to be enjoying the day already."The original concert we were supposed to go to was in Belfast but that got cancelled," she said. I've seen some videos of their live concerts online and I know they're absolutely insane, I can't imagine how insane this is all actually going to be." Left to right: Aisha Rossi, Jack Dylan and Alex Adeyemi have said they've been waiting for the Rammstein concert for years. Alex added: "I've been waiting for this concert since 2019 and I said to myself go to hell or come flood, I've been waiting for a Rammstein gig for 10 years - I will definitely go. One reason why so many are in Cardiff From what I've heard all the tickets are sold out so there are a lot of German fans here too." One of those fans was Luis who had traveled to Germany to London and then to Cardiff. For Luis they were Lyrics are just as important as the band's music and performance He said: "For non-German speakers I think it's mostly about the riffs and the style, but for me personally it's about the lyrics. Luis and his friend who." traveled all the way from Germany to see Rammstein perform at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff. One of the songs is about cannibalism - there was an incident in Germany about 20 years ago during the Afghan war. The band were angry about it and wrote one Song about it and asked why we don't focus on it Husband and wife team Lynne Sears and Paul Dafoe have traveled down from Plymouth to see the band Lynne said: 'I was through Pau about eight years ago l heard of Rammstein. We like all kinds of music, we are totally diverse - rock, dance, techno. "You don't hear that kind of music through speakers. Live music is just a different experience – it goes straight through you.” Lynne Sears and her Plymouth partner Paul Dafoe said the band offered a “different experience”. Paul agreed, adding: "I've loved Rammstein since their inception: I just love how they perform, it's going to be a hell of a show, all the pyrotechnics and fire. I last saw her in Manchester about five years ago. "It was so special because you could sing along to all the songs - they might be in German, but I know all the lyrics to their songs.

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Someone was spotted kissing a pigeon in a Toronto subway station

A video doing the rounds on TikTok shows something gross going down on the TTC, and while that doesn't sound too unusual, this is definitely... (Author: Gardener)

TorontoA video doing the rounds on TikTok shows something gross going down on the TTC, and while that doesn't sound too unusual, this is definitely a new video to add to the list. TikTok user kittiesandwine takes selfie mode standing in awe on the Line 1 subway platform at Bloor-Yonge station as a bespectacled man wearing a black hat, black and white striped jacket and a Carrying under armor bag, very friendly with a will subway pigeon. He gently lifts the winged rat and possible disease carrier to mouth level (while the viewers' internal dialogue collectively screams "No, no, no!") and proceeds to have a face-to-face conversation with the garbage bird. The man capturing the video dramatically whispers, "That's some big city shit right there." Whether he's kissing the bird or letting the bird eat out of his mouth really seems like a trivial point to investigate. It's mouth-to-pigeon contact either way, and your gag reflex probably can't tell the difference. And for anyone who rushes to the comments section now to defend the honor of the pigeons, let me make it clear that I personally have nothing against the birds. But, according to Health Canada, they can also be dangerous and "been linked to a variety of diseases, including histoplasmosis and cryptococcosis." Histoplasmosis is a disease that can infect humans and is caused by a fungus that grows in pigeon droppings. Cryptococcosis is another fungal disease associated with pigeon droppings that can harm those with compromised immune systems.

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Dynamite TNT Championship Grand Match confirmed next week

At AEW Dynamite last night, a huge title match was confirmed for their show next Wednesday as Scorpio Sky and Wardlow collided for the TNT Championship. (Author: Gardener)

next weekYou can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of the newsletter email. You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of the newsletter email. Scorpio Sky was a dominant TNT champion alongside the top American team. Scorpio Sky is a two-time TNT champion after winning what he now calls "genius" in a grueling ranked match against Sammy Guevara on the April 27th edition of Dynamite. However, it seems that one challenger from his past wants a fair shot at the championship and that is none other than Mr Mayhem, Wardlow. Warlow is one of the most form-performing wrestlers on the roster with a comfortable 53-8 record and 14-2 in 2022, with losses credited to current AEW World Champion CM Punk and runner-up Scorpio Sky. Sky defeated Wardlow on March 16 with the help of Wardlow's former ally Shawn Spears and MJF distracted the referee and drove his head into the ring post before Sky clinched the victory via a rollup. Wardlow would get revenge and send his past to Double Or Nothing to decimate MJF after weeks of torment. Now he has a chance to win AEW Gold without distraction for the first time. The champion revealed in a backstage promo with Wardlow at AEW Dynamite last week that the match will take place next week and the condition will be a street fight. The condition could be Sky's worst decision, but the no-rules condition could help him retain a numbers advantage with the help of America's top team. You can watch AEW and AEW Dynamite internationally on FITE TV.

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