⚡ Breaking: A truck bomb exploded at a busy security checkpoint in Mogadishu — Somalia's capital, in the Horn of Africa — killing at least 78, most of them students. (AP)
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios
The NBA has spent the last 25 years importing a surge of international talent. Now it hopes to benefit by exporting the brand those global stars have helped build, Kendall "Axios Sports" Baker writes.
The Basketball Africa League (BAL), a 12-team circuit operated by the NBA and FIBA (International Basketball Federation), just unveiled its logo and held its first scouting combine ahead of a March launch.
The big picture: The NBA is far from the only American sports league with global ambitions, but is perhaps the best positioned to expand internationally.
Between the lines: The NBA's declining TV ratings in the U.S. means the timing isn’t ideal. What may have once been viewed as a smart business decision might now be viewed as a distraction from problems at home.
"The world's 500 wealthiest people tracked by the Bloomberg Billionaires Index added $1.2 trillion [in 2019], boosting their collective net worth 25% to $5.9 trillion," Bloomberg reports.
"Amazon.com Inc.'s Jeff Bezos was down almost $9 billion [to $116 billion], but that drop is because of his divorce settlement with MacKenzie Bezos," and he's "still ending the year as the world’s richest person after Amazon shares jumped."
A database compiled by AP, USA Today and Northeastern University finds more mass killings in 2019 than any year dating back to at least the 1970s, AP's Lisa Marie Pane reports.
Most of the mass killings barely became national news, failing to resonate among the general public because they didn't spill into public places like massacres in El Paso and Odessa, Texas; Dayton, Ohio; Virginia Beach, Virginia; and Jersey City, New Jersey.
Research going back to the 1970s shows no other year with as many mass slayings. The second-most killings in a year prior to 2019 was 38 in 2006.
For all the years I have spent looking at holiday pics, this is one I had never seen:
"Don Imus, who tested the limits of shock radio with his irreverent attacks on celebrities, politicians, racial and ethnic groups, women, gay people and practically anyone whose head stuck up out of the foxhole, died on Friday in College Station, Texas," the N.Y. Times' Robert D. McFadden writes on A1.
Why he mattered, from AP: He mixed comedy with A-list guests like Senators John Kerry, Chris Dodd and John McCain.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange arrives at Westminster Magistrates' Court after being arrested in London on April 11.
When the news broke that Assange had been taken into custody I was in Downing Street. I rushed to Westminster Magistrates' Court in case he was taken there. ...
The photographers and TV crews surged forward as police tried to hold us back. One officer lunged towards me. I darted to the left and shot a few frames. ...
[To shoot through tinted glass, you have] to jam your lens as close to the window of the moving vehicle as possible and fire the flash to illuminate through the glass. I've been told that the picture is reminiscent of an oil painting. That’s partly due to the colour of the tinted window, and partly because the image isn’t entirely sharp!
So how did you spend your holiday break?
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