Sunday, January 22, 2012

HBO's Real Sports Premieres Tuesday

From HBO Sports -


REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL
EXAMINES THE USE OF TORADOL IN THE NFL;
PROFILES BASKETBALL’S VAN GUNDY BROTHERS;
VISITS A REMARKABLE HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL TEAM THAT NEVER PUNTS;
AND RECONNECTS WITH SUPER BOWL NO-SHOW BARRET ROBBINS
WHEN THE EMMY®-WINNING SHOW RETURNS JAN. 24, EXCLUSIVELY ON HBO

            Entering its 18th season, REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL presents more enterprising features and reporting when its 178th edition, available in HDTV, debuts TUESDAY, JAN. 24 (10:00 p.m. ET/PT & 9:00 p.m. CT), exclusively on HBO.
             HBO On Demand availability:  Jan. 30-Feb. 20
            Segments include:
            *Toradol in the NFL.  Real Sports investigative team looks at the largely unknown practice of NFL players being administered the controversial pain drug Toradol.   For years, NFL players in every locker room across the league have lined up to get a shot of Toradol before kickoff because it is the most effective remedy to mask pain throughout the entire body unlike local numbing agents such as Novocaine.  Toradol is not a narcotic, is perfectly legal and provided by team doctors.  Also, it is not physically addictive and does not affect your mental state, but the long-term effects are something that have recently become a hot topic of debate.  When abused, Toradol has shown to cause permanent damage to internal organs, including stomach bleeding, liver disease and kidney failure.  REAL SPORTS correspondent Andrea Kremer speaks with current and former players, doctors and the NFL about the issue of the use of Toradol. 
            Producer:  Chapman Downes.
             *Brothers.  Over the last 15 years, the Van Gundy brothers, Stan and Jeff, have made quite a name for themselves in the NBA.  Having found limited success as players, they followed their father, who coached college basketball teams, into the family business of patrolling the sidelines.  Stan, 52, is currently head coach of the Orlando Magic and previously served as head coach of the Miami Heat.  Jeff, who turned 50 on Jan. 19, led the New York Knicks and then the Houston Rockets for years before becoming one of the game’s top broadcasters.  In this REAL SPORTS/Sports Illustrated collaboration, correspondent Bernie Goldberg sits down with the brothers to discuss their remarkable ascent to the top of the game.
            Producer:  Lisa Bennett.
             *Between the Numbers.  Kevin Kelley, head football coach at Pulaski Academy in Little Rock, Ark., uses his own research to back up the mantra that his team should never punt, should always kick onside kicks after a score and should never return punts.  If this sounds too unorthodox to be effective, Kelley’s theories have resulted in a 104-19 record since he became head coach at the high school, and statisticians have supported his theory on the relative value of punting.  REAL SPORTS correspondent Jon Frankel visits the 42-year-old Kelley in Little Rock as his team prepares to seek its third state title under his leadership.
            Producer:  Nick Dolin.

            *Barret Robbins.  On Jan. 26, 2003, one of the strangest Super Bowl controversies ever unfolded when Barret Robbins, Pro Bowl center for the Oakland Raiders, went AWOL, leaving no trace of his whereabouts two days before the biggest game of his career.  For the Raiders, Robbins’ disappearance was a major distraction, but for Robbins, the episode was the beginning of a dark and tragic story that would include a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, substance abuse, numerous stints in rehab and multiple run-ins with the law.  In 2009, six years after the Raiders lost to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Super Bowl XXXVII, the Houston native sat down with HBO’s Andrea Kremer to reflect on his troubles.  Now, Kremer leads REAL SPORTS cameras into the Florida State Prison where the 38-year-old former NFL star has been incarcerated on drug charges after another encounter with the law.
            Producers:  Zehra Mamdani, Chapman Downes.

            REAL SPORTS has won the Sports Emmy® for Outstanding Sports Journalism 14 times and has received a total of 22 Sports Emmy Awards.  It is the only sports program ever honored with the duPont Award for excellence in broadcast journalism, having first been recognized in 2005.  On Jan. 19, Real Sports will receive its second duPont Award when Columbia University recognizes the show for its series of investigative reports on concussions, highlighted by the Aug. 2010 story revealing the scientific link between sports concussions and the onset of ALS. 
The executive producer of REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL is Rick Bernstein; Kirby Bradley is senior producer.

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