New Restrictions Threaten to Decimate Cuban Skateboarding Scene

Categories: Culture, Sports

Photo by Chris Miller
Cuban state media recently announced new customs restrictions on the amount of items allowed in the country through commercial travel. While the government says that the new rule is intended to cut down on a growing black market that undermines recent economic reforms, many fear unintended consequences. For example, the fledging Cuban skateboarding scene relies on skateboards and gear brought in from the outside world. Skaters on the island feel that the new rule may change their way of life. This is the first of a two part series on skateboarding in Cuba and its direct Miami connection.

It happened at 23 y G, an intersection in Havana, Cuba. It's nothing much really. Just a few small benches spread out among scrawny trees that offer scant protection from the sun's glare. But for one scrawny kid that day some 12 years ago, the humble parcel of land seemed like Eden.

At age 13, Fernando Verdecia Maseda finally found some other skaters. Maseda would go on to become one of Cuba's greatest skaters - but he had to emigrate to Miami to find widespread respect for his skills.

See also: Skateboarding Cuba

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Stay, LeBron: An Open Letter to King James

Dear LeBron,

When I first read the news that you'd be opting out of your Miami Heat contract, I have to admit, I was more than a little upset. I imagine many Miamians had the same reaction, from the guy down the block with a picture of your face and the words "STANK DON'T IT?" painted on the hood of his Chevy Caprice, to the countless parents of children with names like LeBron Rodriguez or Louis LeBron Jameson.

But I've given it some thought, and you know what? I think I get it. To my understanding, the best case scenario is that you, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh all opt out, accept lower salaries, free up some contract money to bring in new talent, and win 18 more championships.

But I'm not writing this letter for the best case scenario. I'm writing because of the other case scenarios.

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Miami Heat Muralist Serge Toussaint Just Wants to Meet LeBron

Categories: Sports

Photo by Rich Robinson

Well, last night didn't go so hot. The Miami Heat lost game five of the NBA Finals to a high powered San Antonio Spurs team. We'll spare you from re-living the horror, because it's not all bad news.

The fact remains that the Heat mean a great deal to the local community, and so many people want to share in the love of what they have accomplished in the past four years.

Serge Toussaint is one of those people. A renowned street artist and painter, Toussaint might be best known for his full team mural on the wall surrounding the Pyke Brothers & Son body shop located at 35 NE 29th Street., across from Morgan's restaurant. He says his dream is to meet the players he's immortalized on the wall. And, well, what else are the Heat doing these days?

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Hundreds of Brazil Fans Celebrate World Cup Kick-Off Victory at Coral Gables Museum

Categories: Sports

Photos by Rich Robinson
Fans of the World Cup watch a live broadcast of the Brazil v. Croatia match at Coral Gables Museum

A stout contingent of Brazilians who call Miami home made their way to Coral Gables Museum yesterday to watch their native team wipe the floor with an over-matched Croatian squad by a score of 3 to 1 in the opening bout of the 2014 World Cup.

Patrica Barbosa is a big time soccer fan. She is also a native of São Paulo who now calls South Florida home. Barbosa was clad in Brazilian garb as she watched the game on a hulking 9' x 16' foot LED screen in the museum's main plaza.

"If they lost, I would want to disappear," Barbosa said of her countrymen in dry fit shirts and cleats running on the pitch a hemisphere away.

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Cassius Clay vs. Sonny Liston: Inside HistoryMiami's Retrospective (Photos)

Categories: Sports

Unpublished photo from Miami Herald Archives - Sports Pool
Cassius Clay pummeling Sonny Liston into submission
Cassius Clay lived in Overtown, and became Muhammad Ali in Brownsville. He owned a duplex in the City of Miami, was loved by the local black community, and could often be found entertaining neighborhood youths with his storytelling and athletic prowess.

Walk up to any stranger of a certain age on the streets of Overtown today, and they will likely tell you how he used to lead massive jogs throughout the neighborhood, trailed by packs of kids excited by the bombastic young fighter's charisma.

This year is the 50th anniversary of Cassius Clay beating Sonny Liston at the sweet science in the squared circle in Miami Beach, and proclaiming, "I shook up the world." HistoryMiami is hosting "I Shook Up the World" Cassius Clay vs. Sonny Liston," an exhibition commemorating this great event in American sports history featuring never before seen archival materials. This weekend is your last chance to check it out.

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Beckham, Shmeckham: Meet the Hot Young Soccer Hunks of Miami United

Hunkz 4 a Cause: hot, young soccer hunks pose with handsome, younger soccer studs.
If you're looking for a hot, young sports hunk, you could do a lot worse than a hot, young soccer hunk. They don't get weird steroid bodies like baseball players, don't burst into flames like NASCAR drivers and, unlike in greyhound racing, they are usually humans.

But where to find hot, young soccer hunks in Miami? Why, on Miami United, of course! Until crusty, old "football" carcass David Beckham brings his ugly team to town, Miami United is the city's only professional soccer team.

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Meowmi New Times Wins "Most Culturally Arbitrary," Takes Title of Champion at O, Miami Resurrection Basketball Tournament

Categories: Culture, Sports

Photo by Marta Xochilt Perez
Sean Pajot (left), Tim Elfrink, Devin Floyd, and Michael E. MIller.
How was your weekend, Miami? Well, not to humble-brag or whatever, but we at Miami New Times, or shall we say "Meowmi" New Times, had a fucking awesome weekend.

Our staff totally killed the court Sunday, taking home the totally panty-dropping title of "Most Arbitrarily Cultural" at the O, Miami Resurrection Basketball Tournament .(Get it? Because Jesus dribbles for Easter.) A special congrats is in order for our team of unstoppable superstars.

"There were four of us on the roster: the svelte Michael E. Miller, the sly Tim Elfrink, the acrobatic Devin Floyd, and me, the tabby-in-the-key, S. Pajot," our music editor said, and yes, they did wear kitty gear.

See also: Five Fun, Easy Ways to Get Involved in O, Miami

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La Martina Miami Beach Polo World Cup Returns for 10th Anniversary

Categories: Culture, Sports

Photo by: George Martinez
It's not every day you see a horse on South Beach -- it's only about once a year.

The famed La Martina Miami Beach Polo World Cup is back, kicking off four days of beachy, equine fun Thursday, April 24.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the competition, originated by Reto Gaudenzi, so the party is set for an extra-special affair, in cooperation with South Florida's the Polo Life. And as luck would have it, last years' women's champions can't return to defend their crown, so the number-one spot is wide open to competition.

See also: How to Get Laid at Miami Beach Polo World Cup IX

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The Ten Things You Need To Know About the NBA Playoffs as a Miami Heat Fan

Categories: Sports

Photo by Alex Broadwell
The NBA Playoffs start Saturday, and it could not come soon enough.

This year, the Miami Heat, and the three superstars the team is built around, go for their fourth NBA Finals in a row and a possible third NBA Championship. Not to get too far ahead of ourselves, but it may be the last time we see our Big Three together for a championship again.

In preparation of what promises to be the hardest playoff run the team has ever been a part of, here are ten things you need to know about this year's playoffs and our Miami Heat's role within it.

See also: Enter the O, Miami Basketball Tournament and Win Street Cred

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Enter the O, Miami Basketball Tournament and Win Street Cred

What do the Big Three and O, Miami have in common? Their love of dominant basketball.

Miami's literary and athletic worlds are headed for a collision course next Easter Sunday. Do your free throw reps, get that jumper wet, and prepare to have some good time on the hardwood. On April 20, the gauntlet will be thrown.

See also: Young Voices Will Rise During the O, Miami SPEAKtacular

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