The Sixers’ Ben Simmons Won’t Play This Season

Ben Simmons

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Another big man will miss the entire season for the Sixers.

Ben Simmons, the overall number-one pick last summer who broke his foot in the preseason, will not play this season. Sixers president Bryan Colangelo announced the news at a press conference this morning. Read more »

Sorry, Philly: Toomey Would Rather Meet Protesters in Pittsburgh and Harrisburg


Yeah, you might be among the protesters who clear their schedule once a week to make their voices heard outside U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey’s Philadelphia office, and you might call him incessantly or even send him faxes (he gets a lot, by the way) – but if you’re from Philly, chances are you won’t get through to Toomey anytime soon.

Maybe if you lived in Pittsburgh or Harrisburg, you’d have more luck.  Read more »

This Ex-Republican Running for D.A. Wants Cash Bail to Be Abolished

Michael Untermeyer | Photo courtesy of Untermeyer's campaign

Michael Untermeyer | Photo courtesy of Untermeyer’s campaign.

Michael Untermeyer is complicated.

Back in 2009 and 2011, he ran for local office as a Republican. Today, he’s campaigning for district attorney as a Democrat. “The difference between the Democratic Party and the Republican Party is the Democratic Party really wants government to serve people, which is why I am a Democrat,” he says. “The Republican Party doesn’t want to have government, period.”

Untermeyer’s platform includes a lot of things liberals like: The former prosecutor opposes the death penalty in most cases, vows to keep almost all drug users out of the criminal justice system, and wants cash bail to be abolished. But in this hyper-partisan era, the fact that Untermeyer once flew the GOP’s flag — and told that “only a Democrat can win this office” — could turn off some Democratic voters. His past experience working in the civil asset forfeiture unit of the attorney general’s office may also prove a challenge in his quest to become district attorney. Read more »

Philly Courts to Start Having Visitors Lock Cell Phones in Bags

Philadelphia's Criminal Justice Center. Photo | Dan McQuade

Photo | Dan McQuade

Visitors to the Juanita Kidd Stout Center for Criminal Justice will soon have to do more than just go through a metal detector — they’ll have to lock up their cell phones, too.

But it won’t be similar to the old system at the CJC, where you’d have to “check in” your cell phone with an employee. Instead, you’ll have to put your phone in a small pouch that will render it essentially inoperable. No texts. No internet. No phone calls.

The CJC is partnering with Yondr, a company that makes the pouches to create what it calls “phone-free events and spaces.” The devices have been used by people like Dave Chappelle, Guns n’ Roses, and Childish Gambino to prevent recording at their shows.

Hannibal Buress has also partnered with Yondr to prevent people from recording his shows, but we can’t understand why. (Sorry.) Read more »

Can Baseball Be Saved?

Philadelphia Phillies catcher Wil Nieves calls for an intentional walk at Citi Field on Jul 30, 2014. Photo by Anthony Gruppuso/USA Today Sports

Philadelphia Phillies catcher Wil Nieves calls for an intentional walk at Citi Field on Jul 30, 2014. Photo by Anthony Gruppuso/USA Today Sports

Just as the Phils kick off spring training comes the earth-shattering news that Major League Baseball is tinkering with the very foundations of America’s Pastime. That’s right: They’re killing the spectacle of the intentional walk. Read more »

You Could Now Get a $500 Fine for Releasing a Balloon in Atlantic City

Atlantic City doesn’t mess around.

You might already know not to feed seagulls in the Jersey Shore town – unless you want to end up in jail. As of last summer, beachgoers who feed seagulls in Atlantic City could face a $500 fine and up to 90 days in prison.

This week, the city passed a law that cracks down on people who release balloons into the sky, according to the Press of Atlantic CityRead more »

The D.A. Candidate Who at 13 Saw His Father Murdered in the Street

Rich Negrin

Richard Negrin | Photo courtesy of Mark Nevins

Richard Negrin knows the trauma of gun violence firsthand. When he was just 13 years old, his father was shot dead in front of him. “It’s not fun to talk about, but I talk about it because it gives me credibility with young people,” he says. “I stand in front of classrooms and say, ‘How many of you have been touched by violence in your immediate family?’ In a first-grade class last year, 80 percent of those kids raised their hand.”

That life-changing experience, Negrin says, is why he became an assistant district attorney years ago, prosecuting hate crimes and other felony cases. He’s against a “heavy-handed, authoritarian” District Attorney’s office, he says, and wants a “community-based model that cares about all of us.” He points to Philly Rising, an initiative aimed at fighting poverty and crime that he led while working as the city’s managing director, as an example of that approach. Negrin, who once sat on the local ethics board, is also positioning himself as the good-government candidate in the district attorney’s race. The Democrat has sworn off gifts and campaign contributions from defense attorneys who may stand across from him the courtroom. Some positions he’s taken — or refused to take — may frustrate some progressives. For instance, he won’t say for now whether he wants a super PAC to back him or if cash bail should be abolished for low-level, nonviolent offenders. Read more »

This Lego Model of Liberty Place Has More Than 17,000 Bricks

Lego Liberty Place

Photo | Dan McQuade

Growing up outside Princeton, Mike Nieves was a Lego enthusiast by the time he was two years old. Now he’s turned that passion into a career.

The Legoland Discovery Center opens at the Plymouth Meeting Mall on April 6th. Last year, Lego held a contest for job applicants who wanted to be a master model builder — yes, almost like in The Lego Movie — at the Center.

About 100 people were scheduled to show up at the contest. Nieves and the other contestants had to make several Lego models over a two-day competition. “It was pretty tough,” Nieves tells Philadelphia magazine. “We had about a half hour for each round. The first was an animal, second round was fantasy, third round was something that represents yourself.”

Nieves did well enough in the contest that he’s now the master model builder for Lego’s Plymouth Meeting Mall location. Today he was on hand at City Hall where Legoland Philly GM Michael Taylor and Mayor Jim Kenney unveiled a nine-foot-tall model of Liberty Place made entirely out of Lego bricks — more than 17,000 of them. Read more »

Sixers Trade Nerlens Noel to Mavericks

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Nerlens Noel, the first player drafted in the Sixers’ rebuild nearly four years ago, is leaving Philadelphia.

According to a report from NBA trade-master Adrian Wojnarowski, the Sixers are sending Noel to the Dallas Mavericks for a first-round pick, center Andrew Bogut, and guard Justin Anderson.

The Mavericks are currently tied for the sixth-worst record in the NBA. The pick, per ESPN’s Marc Stein, is protected 1-though-18. That means the pick will not convey this year; it’s not yet known if the pick could convey in later years or what protections are on it in 2018 and beyond.

Per TNT’s David Aldridge, the Sixers are likely to trade Andrew Bogut — possibly to Boston. ESPN’s Marc Spears reported the Sixers were still unsure what to do with him; they may buy him out if they can’t find a trade partner. Bogut, the first overall pick in the 2005 draft, was traded from Golden State to Dallas this offseason after the Warriors signed Kevin Durant. Read more »

« Older Posts