WXXI AM News

Sports

Sports gambling could soon be legal in New York State. This comes after the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday decided a 1992 federal law prohibiting sports betting was unconstitutional. Casinos and race tracks are celebrating the news; owners say the lift on the ban will generate revenue and a source of entertainment. But organizations like the National Council on Problem Gambling say making sports betting legal could lead to higher rates of gambling problems. 

We discuss what the ruling means on all sides of the issue. Our guests:

The Olympic and Paralympic Games in Pyeongchang are now in the books, and like after many Olympics, a number of think pieces have cropped up online asking the question, “Do the Games still matter?” Between the inflated costs of bidding to become a host city, to constructing venues that often become white elephants after competition, to dwindling ratings on television, many people say the Olympics are more trouble than they're worth. But others point to more positive effects: the surge of interest in sports following the games, boosts in national pride, and the potential to introduce new parts of the world to those who may not otherwise see them.

What do you think? Are the Olympics still relevant? Our guests weigh in:

This past weekend, the NBA announced it is considering going back on a plan it has had in play for years: the so-called “one-and-done” age-limit rule. Right now, NBA players have to be at least 19 years old or one year removed from their high school graduations in order to be drafted.

But NBA Commissioner Adam Silver wants to slash that rule and start talking to elite players in high school. He is apparently sick of the scandals in college basketball, where top programs are accused of paying players and families illicitly, sometimes tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash, gifts, and merchandise.  Silver says if the point was to get high school students to go to college for a little while, why encourage that if there’s scandal after scandal?

As the NBA considers whether to let high school players in the league directly, questions arise about the NCAA. Is it time that the NCAA pays athletes? And if yes, how would it work? Our guests weigh in:

  • Jeff DiVeronica, sports writer for the Democrat & Chronicle
  • Carl Falk, sports talk radio host at Fox Sports 1280
  • Mike Waters, college basketball writer at syracuse.com and the Post-Standard
  • Andre Fontenette, 2004 Syracuse University graduate and former SU wide receiver

The Red Wings are staying in Rochester. The county and the team announced a ten-year deal at a news conference on Monday. This comes as a relief to fans who were worried about the team’s future in Rochester, and the possibility of having two empty stadiums in the city.

We discuss the deal and how a team like the Red Wings impacts the community. Our guests:

Our Dialogue on Disability Week continues with a conversation about adaptive sports. According to the CDC, nearly half of adults with disabilities ages 18 to 64 do not get aerobic physical activity. Local organizations are helping to change that by offering opportunities in adaptive sports.

We hear the stories of local athletes in those programs. Our guests:

  • Michael Cocquyt, supervisor of SportsNet
  • Jen Truscott, alpine skier
  • David Grace, sled hockey athlete, who participates in many winter sports

It's Buffalo Bills mania in Western New York. The Bills are back in the NFL playoffs for the first time in 17 years. But as fans celebrate, something ominous is happening for the league. Ratings are down. More parents are refusing to allow their kids to play football.

We have some fun toasting the Bills, but we ask some serious questions, starting with this: if you won't allow your children to get on the field, should you be supporting the NFL at all? And what is causing the ratings decline? Our guests:

From the Red Wings to the Flash to the Rhinos, Rochester was once considered a hub for minor league sports, but the landscape has changed in recent years -- especially in the last week. The owners of the Rochester Rhinos announced Thursday that they need help to keep the soccer team in Rochester. Declining ticket sales and a lack of corporate and fan support pushed owners David and Wendy Dworkin up against a deadline: if they don't raise $1.3 million by November 30, the team won't play in 2018.

The Dworkin's  announcement came just one day after the Rattlers announced their team will be moving to Dallas. So what's next?

This hour, we discuss what the future may hold for the Rhinos, for Capelli Sport Stadium and its surrounding neighborhood, and for minor league sports in Rochester.  Our guests:

  • David and Wendy Dworkin, owners of the Rochester Rhinos
  • Scott Pitoniak, longtime Rochester sports columnist and author
  • Jeff DiVeronica, sports writer for the Democrat & Chronicle

Here’s a stat that may surprise you. Only 12 percent of youth in Greater Rochester and the Finger Lakes are getting daily physical activity. This means the majority of area youth are not getting 60 minutes a day of active time. That’s one of the stats released in a recent report by the Aspen Institute. The findings are being used by the Rochester Area Community Foundation and the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation to improve access to sports, among other things, for area kids. Why this matters to all area residents and what’s being done to address gaps that exist with youth sports and recreational activities on this edition of Need to Know.

An estimated 35 million kids between the ages of five and 18 play an organized sport each year in the U.S. While millions of them are treated for injuries, many are also treated for sports-related stress. Students athletes are feeling pressure to perform: to win games, be awarded scholarships, and meet the expectations of their parents and coaches. 

UR Medicine is hosting a sport summit next month, with the goal of helping students, parents, and coaches learn how to achieve greater balance in the lives of young athletes. We preview the summit with a discussion about the value of nutrition, mindfulness, sleep, and more. In studio:

  • Dr. Michael Maloney, M.D., director of University Sports Medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center
  • Jane Andrews, nutrition and labeling manager for Wegmans Food Markets
  • Erica Denman, owner and founder of Balance Fitness and Yoga in Webster, and instruction specialist with the Webster Central School District
  • Kayla Purcell, student athlete at Webster Schroder High School
  • Lindsay Stone, college-bound swimmer

New rules for youth sports were recently introduced with the goal of mandating rest and reducing injuries.

The New York State Public High School Athletic Association has approved rules that limit pitch counts for modified, freshman, junior varsity, and varsity athletes. U.S.A. Football, the national governing body for amateur football, created a new format called "modified tackle" that reduces tackling and pileups. This comes after declining participation among young athletes, whose parents think the game is not safe for children.

Are the new rules realistic? Do they go far enough? We discuss these questions with student athletes and members of the medical community. Our guests:

  • Dr. Michael Maloney, M.D., chief of sports medicine and professor in the Department of Orthopaedics at UR Medicine
  • Dr. Gregg Nicandri, M.D., sports medicine physician and associate professor in the Department of Orthopaedics at UR Medicine
  • Caleb Punter, member of the Webster Schrader baseball team
  • Ashton Fantigrassi, member of the Webster Thomas football team

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