Wednesday, June 30, 2021 | SEC Engages with Students for Their Perspectives on Emerging Issues

Yesterday, Chair Gary Gensler and Investor Advocate Rick Fleming hosted a roundtable discussion with the students and faculty of the University of Texas at Arlington's Department of Finance and Real Estate. Students presented on diversity and disclosure in investment management and Crypto-ETFs. This was the latest in a series of University Roundtables hosted by the Office of the Investor Advocate to gain the perspectives of young investors and future investors regarding emerging issues in the financial markets.

The University Roundtables provide opportunities for university students to present their ideas to the SEC Commissioners, the Investor Advocate, and other SEC staff on financial topics of interest to them. Students prepare for their presentations as an academic development exercise – planning the subject matter, developing content, conducting research, drafting supporting materials, and preparing for public speaking. University faculty serve as advisors to the students, providing guidance and help in coordinating relevant curriculum objectives.

"These roundtables are valuable opportunities to obtain diverse input from university communities across the U.S., especially as it relates to student investors, investing trends among university-aged individuals, and emerging topics that are material in the decision making processes of university populations," said SEC Investor Advocate Fleming.

Earlier sessions have included the University of Chicago's School of Law and the Center for Law and Finance, Seton Hall University's Stillman School of Business, the University of San Diego's School of Law, and Yeshiva University's Cardozo School of Law. Covered topics have included cryptocurrencies, ESG, gamification, SPACs, and more.

The Investor Advocate will next host a Retail, Restaurant, and Field Workers Roundtable on Aug. 25, 2021, at 3 p.m. ET to examine the appeal of cryptocurrencies, the emergence of recreational investing and gamification, and the impact of COVID as it relates to individuals’ financial futures.

The Office of the Investor Advocate supports the SEC by, among other things, providing a voice for investors, assisting retail investors, studying investor behavior, and facilitating the SEC's Investor Advisory Committee.

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Atlanta Hawks At Philadelphia 76ers Game 2 TELEVISION Facts, Betting Lines, And Gamer Scoring Props

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The Atlanta Hawks knocked off the Philadelphia 76ers on the road in Game 1, landing the first punch in what could be an interesting best-of-seven series in the Eastern Conference. On Tuesday evening, the two teams will take the floor again at Wells Fargo Center, with the pressure shifting back to the top-seeded Sixers.

Much as he has been for the entire playoffs, Trae Young was the story for the Hawks in the opener. Young generated 25 points and eight assists before halftime and settled in with 35 points and 10 assists to lead Atlanta. As a team, the Hawks set franchise playoff records with 74 points and 13 three-pointers in the first half, and they led by as many as 26 points in the game. Things did get dicey for Atlanta down the stretch, though, which could provide optimism for the Sixers in the rematch.

Following genuine uncertainty as to whether he would play as a result of a knee issue, Joel Embiid was tremendous in his return for Philadelphia. Embiid scored 39 points, grabbed nine rebounds and blocked three shots, largely looking like himself in 38 minutes. In fact, the Sixers dominated the minutes when Embiid played, but Philadelphia must find a way to survive with bench units on the floor after they hemorrhaged in Game 1.

The Sixers can do a lot of damage by simply cleaning up two specific areas in the follow-up. Philadelphia shot just 10-of-29 from three compared to 20-of-47 for Atlanta. In addition, the Sixers turned the ball over 19 times, including 12 giveaways in the first 14 minutes as they dug a hole that was too deep to overcome.

From a betting standpoint, Game 1 went Over the total of 219.5 points and Atlanta covered the closing point spread of 4.5 points as an underdog.

Game 2 TV Info

Tip Time: Tuesday, June 8; 7:30 p.m. ET TV Network: TNT

Game 2 Betting Lines (via DraftKings Sportsbook)

Series Prices: 76ers (-122), Hawks (+100) Spread: 76ers -5 (-113), Hawks +8 (-108) Total: Over 223 (-112), Under 223 (-109) Money Line: 76ers (-210), Hawks (+175)

Game 2 Player Scoring Props (via DraftKings Sportsbook)

Danny Green O/U 8.5 Points (Over -127/Under +100) Tobias Harris O/U 21.5 (-113/-113) Joel Embiid O/U 28.5 (-137/+110) Trae Young O/U 27.5 (-113/-113) Seth Curry O/U 14.5 (+100/-127) Clint Capela O/U 12.5 (-113/-113) Ben Simmons O/U 15.5 (-113/-113)

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Deandre Ayton beats Nikola Jokic in Nuggets' Activity 1 reduction, responds to MVP's approval: "That is actually lit up"

Take a look at this piece by Kyle Fredrickson from The Denver Post talking about some important events for the week. Kyle Fredrickson recently posted this and I decided it was worth posting here.

Nikola Jokic sounded the alarm before the Nuggets-Suns playoff series.

Among all of the talented centers playing in today’s NBA, few have defended him better than a rising Phoenix star in the post. Jokic told reporters that Deandre Ayton has given him the “most trouble.” Call it prophetic praise.

On Monday night, Ayton outshined the presumptive MVP in Denver’s Game 1 defeat in the desert. Jokic lacked efficiency with 22 points on 23 shots, plus three assists and nine rebounds. In contrast, Ayton dropped 20 points on 9-of-13 shooting with 10 boards. He did not learn until after the game that Jokic considers him among his toughest draws in the league.

“Wow. He said that?” Ayton asked. “That’s lit.”

He responded with equal admiration.

“I love playing against Jokic,” Ayton said. “That’s the MVP of our league. He has so much. Has a lot to cover. The dude can do anything. That’s just the modern center right there. You have to watch out for drives, he can shoot … and play-make for his teammates.”

Suns coach Monty Williams made his rotation strategy simple in Game 1 by keeping Ayton on the floor at all times with Jokic. They played the exact same number of minutes — 36:25 — with Ayton staying out of foul trouble. Phoenix outscored Denver by 13 points over that stretch.

Ayton’s 6-foot-11 length and elite athleticism kept Jokic off-balance for much of the night. He regularly sprinted the floor in transition with hustling off-ball movement that kept the Suns’ offense humming.

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Keeler: Aaron Gordon was right. Nuggets looked “soft” and “scared” in Game 1. And if Chris Paul is healthy, that’s a bad sign. Nuggets’ Michael Porter Jr. “tweaked” back in Game 1 loss, coach Michael Malone says Suns blast Nuggets in the second half, seize Game 1 of second-round series Nuggets vs. Suns 3-pointers: Chris Paul sinks Denver with breakout fourth quarter PHOTOS: Denver Nuggets vs. Phoenix Suns, Game 1, June 7, 2021

“There was one time I took off, I was going full speed, I look to my right and (Ayton) is passing me. I’m running as fast as I can,” Phoenix shooting guard Devin Booker said. “That opens up a lot of opportunities for all of us. He deserves the credit for that. For rolling, forcing somebody to tag, and opening up a lot of open shots.”

The Jokic vs. Ayton matchup will be highly scrutinized for Game 2 on Wednesday as the Nuggets aim to split the series before returning home. Of course, Jokic is tasked with far more team responsibility as the engine that makes Denver run. But Ayton is quickly developing into one of the NBA’s top post players.

Just ask the Joker.

“I think he’s a great person. He always talks to me on the floor. I really appreciate that,” Jokic said. “He’s the best in the league in field-goal percentage. So, he’s not missing a lot of shots. He knows what he needs to do. He’s doing that on a really high level. He’s really a two-way center. … You can see that he’s talking to his team. He wants to be even better. For someone who is young, he has that kind of mentality.”

Nuggets facility Nikola Jokic wins famous MVP honor, league source mentions

Interesting article by Mike Singer from The Denver Post discussing some important events for the week. Mike Singer recently posted this and I thought it was a great post for syndicating here.

PHOENIX — As the regular season wound down, Nikola Jokic didn’t know what to do.

With homecourt advantage secured for the first round, the Nuggets center waffled between preserving his energy for the postseason or playing in every game, if for no other reason than he was healthy. Jokic chose the latter, securing a perfect 72-game attendance record and putting a bow on a historic regular season.

On Tuesday, Jokic made more NBA history.

The unorthodox superstar was named league MVP, a league source confirmed to The Denver Post, becoming the lowest draft pick to ever win the award and the first Nuggets player ever to do so. The former record-holders were Giannis Antetokounmpo and Steve Nash, both chosen No. 15 overall. The Nuggets selected Jokic with the No. 41 pick of the 2014 draft.

It’s not a stretch to call him the most improbable MVP in league history. Six seasons ago, the Sombor, Serbia native was a lightly regarded prospect. Now he’s forever engraved alongside the best players in the game’s history.

RELATED: How Nikola Jokic became the NBA’s most improbable MVP

With vision like Magic Johnson, offensive tricks like Larry Bird and a humble confidence like Tim Duncan, Jokic’s game morphed into a quilt of his predecessors.

Amid arguably the most taxing season in NBA history, Jokic reached new levels of dominance. His scoring took a massive leap, jumping from 19.9 points per game last season to 26.4 this one. At 8.3 assists per game, Jokic finished just shy of Wilt Chamberlain’s all-time season average (8.6) for dimes from a center. His 10.8 rebounds per game tied his career-high. In addition to career-highs in points and assists, Jokic’s efficiency (56% from the field; 38.8% from 3) was astounding.

Jokic led the NBA in double-doubles (60), was second in triple-doubles (16), and finished the regular season third in total minutes (2,488). Philadelphia center Joel Embiid, a fellow MVP finalist, played just 1,585 during an injury-riddled season.

As the MVP race came into focus late in the season, Jokic navigated the inquiries with aplomb. Not once did he suggest he deserved the award, even though by virtue of his play and the Nuggets’ team success, he was the leading candidate for months. He turned down numerous interview requests, rejected national podcast appearances and, more generally, let his play speak for itself, even as other candidates waged campaigns in the media to get votes.

Among all the things Jokic excelled at this season, celebrating himself wasn’t one of them.

When guard Jamal Murray tore his ACL on April 12, many on the outside believed the Nuggets would collapse. Instead, they closed the season 13-5 behind Jokic’s production and rose in the standings. Over the final month of the season, as defenses schemed to minimize Jokic’s impact even further, he averaged 26.9 points on nearly 57% shooting, 10.6 rebounds and 6.9 assists per game.

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It shouldn’t have come as a surprise that Jokic kept his team afloat. Thanks to Jokic’s availability, the Nuggets survived Michael Porter Jr.’s absence in January (missed 11 games) and extended injuries to guards Monte Morris (25), Will Barton (16) and Gary Harris before he was traded. Paul Millsap, JaMychal Green and P.J. Dozier all missed significant time as well, limiting Denver’s frontcourt depth. But each night Jokic suited up, the Nuggets had a chance to win regardless of who surrounded him.

Of the four conference finalists left standing in the “Bubble” last season, it should be noted that the Nuggets, at 47-25, had the best season by far. And even though MVP ballots were due the day after the regular season ended, among the Lakers, Celtics and Heat, only the Nuggets advanced to the second round of the playoffs.

Ever since the regular season ended, staffers within the Nuggets’ organization have peppered the team’s PR staff about when the MVP announcement might be coming. There was more excitement from coaches and players, according to one team spokesman, than there was from Jokic himself.

But now that it’s official, Jokic doesn’t need to evade the questions any longer. He’s the MVP of the NBA. And no one can ever take it away from him.

Historic award

Selected 41st overall in the 2014 NBA draft, Nikola Jokic is now the lowest selected player to be named MVP. Here’s a look at where each of the past NBA MVPs were chosen.

Pick MVPs Players117LeBron James (4), Magic Johnson (3), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (2), Tim Duncan (2), Shaquille O’Neal, David Robinson, Bill Walton, Allen Iverson, Derrick Rose2-510Michael Jordan (5), Charles Barkley, Kevin Garnett, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, James Harden6-106Larry Bird (3), Stephen Curry (2), Dirk Nowitzki10-144Karl Malone (2), Kobe Bryant, Julius Erving154Steve Nash (2), Giannis Antetokounmpo (2)ABA3Moses Malone (3)


LeBron James Assembles A 'All-star Team' Of Looney Tunes In The 'Space Jam: A New Legacy' Trailer

Space Jam: A New Legacy, an inexplicably controversial movie, is the first Looney Tunes film to receive a theatrical release since 2003’s Looney Tunes: Back in Action. The HBO Max series is great, but this is unacceptable. The world would be a better place with more Looney Tunes in it, even in a sequel to an $80 million Nike commercial.

A New Legacy swaps Michael Jordan for LeBron James, who gathers the Toon Squad, including Bugs, Daffy, and Lola, to defeat the evil Goon Squad. Also, Don Cheadle plays a computer algorithm named Al-G Rhythm and Mad Max is involved somehow.

Enough talk about Pepe Le Pew. Let’s focus on how weird Space Jam 2 sounds.

Here’s the official plot synopsis:

When LeBron James and his young son Dom are trapped in a digital space by a rogue A.I., LeBron must get them home safe by leading Bugs, Lola Bunny and the whole gang of notoriously undisciplined Looney Tunes to victory over a powered-up roster of professional basketball stars as you’ve never seen them before. It’s Tunes versus Goons in the highest-stakes challenge of his life, that will redefine LeBron’s bond with his son and shine a light on the power of being yourself.

Space Jam: A New Legacy hits theaters and HBO Max on July 16.

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Follow Tyler Tysdal on Instagram | SEC Charges Self-Proclaimed Real Estate “Dealmaker” With Multiple Offering Frauds and Misappropriation of Investor Funds

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced charges against Matthew J. Skinner of Santa Clarita, California, and five entities he owns and controls – Empire West Equity Inc., Bayside Equity LP, Longacre Estates LP, Freedom Equity Fund LLC, and Simple Growth LLC – for conducting four unregistered and fraudulent real estate investment offerings between 2015 and 2020, through which he raised more than $9 million from over 100 investors. 

The SEC’s complaint alleges that Skinner, who touted himself to investors as a successful real estate investor and dealmaker, made multiple misrepresentations to investors and misappropriated millions of dollars of investor funds.  The SEC contends that Skinner told investors their money would be used to finance specific real estate projects or investments, projecting and, in some cases, guaranteeing double-digit annual returns.  The SEC alleges that instead Skinner spent substantial amounts of investor funds on his personal expenses, including European vacations and payments for a Maserati and an Aston Martin.  The SEC also alleges that Skinner used investor money to pay operational and marketing expenses unrelated to the specific projects, and to make Ponzi-like payments to other investors.  According to the SEC’s complaint, Skinner owes investors millions of dollars, and he falsely blamed the COVID-19 pandemic for his failure to pay them, telling investors their money was safe when in fact he had spent it all.  The SEC alleges that Skinner used these false statements to pressure certain investors to extend their investment terms.

“Those attempting to raise money in private offerings must still fully comply with the federal securities laws,” said Michele Wein Layne, Director of the SEC’s Los Angeles Regional Office.  “Skinner allegedly defrauded investors with false promises while misappropriating their money.”

The SEC’s complaint, which was filed in the Central District of California, charges Skinner, Empire West, Longacre Estates, Bayside Equity, Freedom Equity Fund, and Simple Growth with violating the securities registration requirements of Sections 5(a) and 5(c) of the Securities Act of 1933 and the antifraud provisions of Section 17(a) of the Securities Act and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5 thereunder.  The complaint also charges Skinner with violating the broker-dealer registration requirements of Section 15(a) of the Exchange Act.  The complaint seeks permanent injunctions, disgorgement, prejudgment interest, and civil penalties.  The complaint also seeks conduct-based injunctions against Skinner that permanently enjoin him or any entity under his control from raising money through unregistered offerings and from obtaining or receiving money related to or derived from Longacre Estates LP or Bayside Equity LP, or their underlying real estate projects. 

The SEC’s investigation was conducted by Christopher Nowlin and Christopher Conte and supervised by Finola Manvelian.  The litigation will be led by Lynn M. Dean and supervised by Amy J. Longo. 

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Tuesday, June 29, 2021 | SEC Appoints New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal as Director of Enforcement

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that Gurbir S. Grewal has been appointed Director of the Division of Enforcement, effective July 26, 2021. Grewal currently serves as Attorney General for the State of New Jersey, a role he has held since January 2018, when he was confirmed by the New Jersey State Senate after being nominated by Governor Phil Murphy.

"I'm honored and delighted to welcome Attorney General Grewal to the SEC," said SEC Chair Gary Gensler. "He has had a distinguished career as New Jersey's chief law enforcement officer and as a prosecutor at both the local and federal levels. He has the ideal combination of experience, values, and leadership ability to helm the Enforcement Division at this critical time. I look forward to working closely with him to protect investors and root out wrongdoing in our markets."

"I thank Melissa Hodgman for her service as the Enforcement Division's Acting Director," Chair Gensler added. "She will continue to be an important adviser to both Gurbir and me, and I look forward to our continued work together."

"The Enforcement Division has a critical role to play in finding and punishing violations of the law," said Grewal. "I'm excited to get to work with the talented team of public servants to uncover and prosecute misconduct and protect investors. I thank Governor Murphy for the opportunity to serve the people of New Jersey and all of the colleagues with whom I’ve had the pleasure to work during my career in the state."

As New Jersey's Attorney General, Grewal heads the Department of Law & Public Safety, which employs more than 3,700 uniformed officers, 750 lawyers, and thousands of additional public servants, including investigators, regulators, and administrative staff. Before becoming Attorney General, Grewal served as Bergen County Prosecutor, the chief law enforcement office of New Jersey's most populous county. Earlier in his career, he was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of New Jersey, where he served as Chief of the Economic Crimes Unit from 2014 to 2016 and oversaw the investigation and prosecution of all major white collar and cybercrimes in the District of New Jersey. He also previously served as an AUSA in the Criminal Division of the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York, where he was assigned to the Business and Securities Fraud Unit. Grewal worked in private practice from 1999-2004 and from 2008-2010.

Grewal graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in 1995. He obtained his law degree from the College of William & Mary, Marshall-Wythe School of Law in 1999.

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How the Mountain ranges have actually done in the Crowning achievement Derby

This is an interesting piece by Joe Nguyen from The Denver Post discussing some important happenings for the week. Joe Nguyen recently posted the article and I thought it was well worth sharing here.

Shortstop Trevor Story on Monday announced he will be competing in the Home Run Derby at Coors Field on July 12. He will be the 12th Rockies player to compete in the competition and first since Charlie Blackmon in 2017.

Here’s a look a how the first 11 Rockies players fared in the annual summer event:

Dante Bichette (1994): The outfielder was Colorado’s first-ever participant. He clubbed three, tying Houston’s Jeff Bagwell, in the first round.

Ellis Burks (1996): Burks, another member of the Blake Street Bombers, was eliminated after he had just one homer in the first round.

Larry Walker (1997, 1999): The soon-to-be-enshrined Hall of Famer totaled the highest overall number of home runs in 1997 with 19, but ran out of juice late, losing to Yankees first baseman Tino Martinez, 3-1, in the finals. He didn’t do as well two years later, failing to advance out of the first round with just two.

Vinny Castilla (1998): The power-hitting third baseman represented host Colorado at Coors Field. He hit seven in the first round but failed to advance in round two, falling three short when he hit five.

Todd Helton (2001): Helton clobbered 49 home runs during the 2001 season. Unfortunately he mustered just two at the derby and failed to advance past round one.

Matt Holliday (2007): The outfielder tied for the lead with five in the first round, but fell just short of advancing to the finals when he hit eight in round two.

Carlos Gonzalez (2012): CarGo hit four in the first round, but fell short of advancing.

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Michael Cuddyer (2013): The Rockies outfielder advanced out of the first round after hitting seven. He added eight in round two, but was one short of Bryce Harper to advance to the finals.

Troy Tulowitzki (2014): Tulo hit four in the first round, but his run ended in the second after hitting just two.

Justin Morneau (2014): The Canadian first baseman was eliminated after he hit two in the first round.

Charlie Blackmon (2017): The bearded outfielder fell short in his matchup against Dodgers’ Cody Bellinger, 15-14, to be eliminated in the first round.

A pair of former Rockies sluggers are noticeably absent from the list: Andres Galarraga and Nolan Arenado. Galarraga is the lone member of the Blake Street Bombers to not participate. In an interview with The Post in 2018, Arenado said, “It’s never really grabbed my eye, for some reason. I’d like to say that one day I will want to do it, but for now, I just enjoy hanging out.”

Broncos Mailbag: Should Denver intend on re-signing Von Miller or using his limit space on other needs?

Take a look at this article by Ryan O’Halloran from The Denver Post talking about some important happenings this week. Ryan O’Halloran recently published the article and I thought it was well worth syndicating here.

Denver Post Broncos writer Ryan O’Halloran posts his Broncos Mailbag periodically during the offseason. Submit questions to Ryan here.

Have you seen tangible progress from Drew Lock since last season or from where he was at this point last year? I’m wondering if all the work he’s been doing has been showing up on the field. From what I’ve read, he’s been more explosive than Teddy Bridgewater but also less consistent.

— Mike C., Los Angeles

Some folks were keeping score — this day for Bridgewater, this day for Lock, etc., — during the offseason practices that were open for viewing. I passed on doing that.

Lock is always going to be the more explosive of the quarterbacks because he can power the football down the field. Bridgewater is generally going to be the more steady hand because he takes the short profits so he doesn’t go broke.

Not until Lock faces Minnesota in the Aug. 14 preseason opener will we know if a) his offseason work has paid off, b) being in Pat Shurmur’s playbook for a second consecutive year is as beneficial as the team suggests and c) Lock has a shot at starting in Week 1.

I am not a season ticket holder but would like to buy tickets to a few Broncos games. Any news on when single ticket games will go on sale and if Denver residents will be eligible for half price tickets?

— Morgan, Denver

The Broncos have not revealed their single-game ticket plan for 2021. Two years ago, it happened on June 21 so I imagine an announcement is imminent.

In ’19, to Morgan’s point, the Broncos offered 2,000 half-priced tickets for fans who pre-registered through Ticketmaster’s Verified Fan program (four tickets per household).

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The NFL has the worst all-star game of the Big Four sports. What would you do to make it better? I wouldn’t mind seeing them change the actual game to flag football instead of them being in full pads and half playing. Or just eliminate the game completely and do more skill competitions.

— Paul, Brighton

Eliminate every single thing revolving around the Pro Bowl. The walk-through workouts. The skills competition. The game. Every … last … bit … of … it.

I’ve covered one Pro Bowl — January 2019 in Orlando. It poured the entire game and it was worse than I could have ever imagined.

I covered the NBA All-Star Game in Las Vegas in 2007 and that was mildly entertaining. I like the MLB All-Star Game even though Rob Manfred has another stupid idea in the offing (players don’t wear their team jerseys for the game).

Von Miller’s contract ends after this season. Do you think the Broncos will re-sign him? I’d love to see him end his career in Denver, but getting back that big chunk of money in cap space would also be lovely.

— Mike H., Denver

If Miller re-signs or not, the Broncos will create cap space because his next contract (if there is one) won’t approach the whopping cap number like this year’s $22.125 million.

I do think being a one-franchise player is important to Miller, but if he finishes his career somewhere else, so what? He’ll still be a Broncos Ring of Famer and if he makes it to Canton, will still be recognized by the franchise and their fan base.

If Miller gets back to double-digit sacks, it would make sense for the Broncos to retain him but not at a huge cost. If the team continues to flounder, Miller may look elsewhere to win a second Super Bowl ring. Nothing wrong with that.

Hi Ryan, did the Broncos ever have a shot at landing Russell Wilson or was that just all just rumors? And have you heard anything new on the Aaron Rodgers front?

— Jack, Denver

Unlike the Deshaun Watson (early winter) and Rodgers (Draft Night) situations, it seems like the Wilson thing never got out of the blocks. Plus, his camp said he would prefer only Dallas, New Orleans, Chicago and Las Vegas … the Broncos weren’t listed.

Rodgers and the Packers remain dug in. As I’ve written, the big day is the Packers’ training-camp report date of July 27.

Denver Post Broncos writer Ryan O’Halloran posts his Broncos Mailbag periodically during the offseason. Submit questions to Ryan here.

 | SEC Charges Electronic Trading Platform for Operating As An Unregistered Broker-Dealer

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that Neovest Inc., a provider of an order and execution management system (OEMS) that facilitates electronic trading, has agreed to pay a $2.75 million penalty for its failure to register as a broker-dealer in violation of the federal securities laws.  This is the SEC’s first case charging an OEMS provider for operating as an unregistered broker-dealer. 

According to the SEC’s order, Neovest, a subsidiary of JPMorgan Chase & Co., operates an OEMS that allows customers to route orders for stocks and options to more than 360 customer-selected destination brokers for execution.  The SEC’s order finds that prior to being acquired by JPMorgan Chase, Neovest engaged in this activity through its registered broker-dealer, Neovest Trading Inc.  The order finds that although Neovest withdrew its broker-dealer registration after it was acquired, it continued to operate the OEMS as an unregistered broker-dealer by, among other things, participating in the order-taking and order-routing process and soliciting customers and destination brokers through the firm’s website and direct outreach at industry conferences and trade shows.  Neovest played a role in determining the routing options that were available to its customers by entering into agreements with the destination brokers.  According to the order, in exchange for its OEMS services, Neovest also continued to receive transaction-based compensation by having payments from destination brokers redirected to J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, a registered broker-dealer, which then transferred the proceeds to Neovest.

The SEC order further finds that Neovest’s failure to register as a broker-dealer deprived its customers of protections associated with registration, including inspections and examinations by the SEC and the requirement to establish policies and procedures to safeguard customer information.  As detailed in the order, during the period that Neovest failed to register, the firm replicated a database containing customer authentication information, including user names and passwords, to one of its most active customers and failed to exercise any supervision over the customer’s use of the database. 

“According to the SEC’s order, Neovest circumvented the regulatory regime that grants broker-dealers the privilege of operating in our markets,” said Joseph Sansone, Chief of the SEC Enforcement Division’s Market Abuse Unit.  “Today’s charges underscore the SEC’s commitment to securing the important investor protections that flow from broker-dealer registration.”

The SEC’s order censures Neovest and finds that it willfully violated Section 15(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.  Without admitting or denying the SEC’s findings, Neovest consented to the order and agreed to cease and desist from committing or causing any violations and any future violations of Section 15(a) of the Exchange Act, and to pay a $2.75 million penalty. 

The SEC’s investigation was conducted by Michael Baker and Colby Steele with the assistance of Mandy Sturmfelz in the Enforcement Division’s Cyber and Market Abuse Units.  The case was supervised by Paul Kim, Deborah Tarasevich, Kristina Littman, Chief of the Cyber Unit, and Mr. Sansone. 

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De'Andre Hunter Will Possess Leg Surgical Procedure As Well As Is Out For The Time

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The Atlanta Hawks are currently locked in a 1-1 series with the Philadelphia 76ers after swiping Game 1 in Philly before dropping Game 2. As they head back to Atlanta for their first home games of the series, the Hawks received some unfortunate news regarding one of their young stars.

De’Andre Hunter has not played in either of the first two games against the Sixers, as he was listed out for both games with right knee soreness, but on Wednesday the team offered a new update that, unfortunately, brought word of a small tear in his meniscus that will require surgery and end his season.

The initial review revealed a new small tear of the lateral meniscus. Films from the MRI were sent to Dr. Neal ElAttrache of Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles for a second opinion, who earlier today confirmed the tear and recommended surgery. Hunter is scheduled to travel to Los Angeles this weekend and undergo surgery to the lateral meniscus on Tuesday with Dr. ElAttrache. He will miss the remainder of the postseason and future updates will be provided as appropriate.

The Hawks have started Solomon Hill in place of Hunter in both games so far, with Kevin Huerter taking a bigger role and playing well off the bench. Huerter, Hill, and Danilo Gallinari all become far more important in this series without Hunter, who is the Hawks best wing defender and spent much of the Knicks series hounding Julius Randle. Without Hunter, Nate McMillan often has to choose between having more offense or more defense on the court with his wing rotation, and it’s an unfortunate loss for one of the league’s best surprises this postseason.

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Utah Jazz music's Rudy Gobert gains third Defensive Gamer of the Year honor

Interesting piece by Brian Mahoney from The Denver Post talking about several important points this week. Brian Mahoney recently posted this and I thought it was worth syndicating on this website.

Rudy Gobert saved Utah’s opening game of the second round with a blocked shot, the kind of play that’s earned him recognition as the NBA’s best defender.

It would have been ever better if Mark Eaton had seen it.

The former Jazz center died last month at 64 and Gobert was thinking about his predecessor Wednesday after breaking a tie with him for most Defensive Player of the Year awards in franchise history by winning it for a third time.

“I thought about it last night because I knew that I probably would have got a text after the game,” Gobert said.

“I’m sure he’s very proud and I’m going to try to keep making him proud and keep honoring his legacy.”

Gobert had the most total blocked shots and defensive rebounds in the league this season and became the fourth player to win the award at least three times after leading the Jazz to the best record in the league.

A night after a game-sealing blocked shot in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals, Gobert received 84 first-place votes and 464 points from a global panel of 100 sportswriters and broadcasters.

Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons was second with 15 first-place votes and 287 votes, while Draymond Green of Golden State was third with 76 points.

Gobert was the Defensive Player of the Year in 2018 and 2019. Dikembe Mutombo and Ben Wallace each won it four times and Dwight Howard three.

With Gobert in the middle, the Jazz went 52-20 and earned the overall No. 1 seed for the first time. They limited teams to 44.7% shooting, second-lowest in the league.

As more teams turn to smaller lineups and shoot from further away from the basket, it’s tougher for traditional centers to stay on the floor.

Gobert welcomes the challenge.

“For me it’s really been about getting better every single year and teams have been trying to negate my impact one way or another every single year,” Gobert said. “So I had to raise my level year after year and day after day to be able to try to keep dominating on that end.”

Miami’s Bam Adebayo earned the other first-place vote and finished fourth. Giannis Antetokounmpo rounded out the top five.

Antetokounmpo ended Gobert’s reign last year during a disappointing finish to the season for the native of France. Gobert’s positive test for the coronavirus triggered the NBA’s shutdown in March, and after play resumed the Jazz blew a 3-1 lead in the first round against Denver.

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But the Jazz powered through this season and took Game 1 in the second round against the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday when Gobert blocked Marcus Morris’ 3-point attempt to preserve a 112-109 victory.

Gobert averaged 14.3 points and 13.5 rebounds, tying a career high, in 71 games. His 2.7 blocks per game ranked second in the league.

His teammates surprised him by leaving the award on his chair in the locker room. Gobert said he was touched by their happiness because of how much enjoys the connection they’ve developed defending together.

“It’s been fun to, whether we have a big lineup or small lineup, being with my four teammates on the floor and try to do anything I can to make them better,” Gobert said.