Athlete Profiles

Fat Joe Rocks the house at Floyd Mayweather ’s Star Studded 40th Birthday

In celebration of his 40th birthday, world champion boxer Floyd Mayweather threw himself a bash as big as his career Saturday night in Los Angeles, in a ballroom downtown, Mayweather welcomed celebrity guests: Bobby Brown, Justin Bieber,  Mariah Carey, the Kardashians,  into a star-studded room decorated to the max. Bronx Rapper fat Joe bought down the house perfomring some of his hits “Make it Rain” “Lean Back” and “All the Way Up”


The boxing superstar was seen dancing away and appeared to be enjoying the design on his incredible cake which featured boxing gloves, a championship belt and suitcase full of cash completing the iced decorations.
“The cake took about 72 hours to make. It had to be transported in two pieces because it was too tall to fit in my SUV, It had over 12 feet of swarovski crystals on it… and it was loaded with over a hundred personal photos ranging from childhood to now showcasing the 40 years of Floyd.”

Tragedy Strikes Brazilian Football Team

Photo by Mantos do Futebol

Photo by Mantos do Futebol

Many had hoped Tuesday,  Nov. 29 would be the beginning of a fairy tale ending for Brazil’s Chapecoense football club, but it turned into a nightmare as almost all the members of the team, a flight crew, and the journalists on board the privately chartered LaMia jet died tragically while heading to Colombia the day before the Copa Sudamericana finals.

Officials from Colombia‘s aviation agency and local police report that some of the possible reasons for the crash, which was near the jungle region of the country, may have been due to unfavorable weather conditions and electrical problems. There is also the possibility that the plane ran out of fuel while it was only 18 miles away from its destination.

In total, there were 71 casualties and six survivors. The survivors include aircraft mechanic Erwin Tumiri, flight attendant Ximena Suarez, journalist Rafael Henzel Valmorbida, and football players Jackson Ragnar Follman, Alan Ruschel and Hèlio Hermito Zampier.

Goalkeeper Marcos Danilo Padilha initially survived the wreckage, but later died from the injuries that he sustained.

This year, the small club was gaining major attention after it managed to attract Brazilian superstars back to their home country after many had played for other countries, like midfielder Cleber Santana who spent many years with Athletico Madrid.

After learning of the terrible event, Brazilian President Michel Temer “declared three days of national mourning,” according to

In a show of solidarity and sportsmanship, Colombia’s football team Atlètico Nacional asked the Copa Sudamericana organizers to award the title to Chapecoense.

Cubs Manager Joe Maddon Goes to Bat For Hometown Hispanics

World Series Champion & Cubs Manager Joe Maddon Goes to Bat For Hometown Hispanics


Joe Maddon was six years from leading the Chicago Cubs to their first World Series victory in more than a century, and sitting on a kid-sized chair in a private home-turned-preschool, when a light bulb went on in his head.

He had come to a Christmas party at a daycare in his beloved Hazleton, Pennsylvania, to meet some of the area’s Hispanic residents — the very people who were being blamed for the crime, for the drug abuse, for the joblessness and despair that was gripping his hometown.

The proud city that once was home to more than 30,000 people in 1980, when the coals mines were operating and the garment factories were humming, had lost a third of its population when those jobs went away. And those who stayed were leery of the new arrivals.

As the kids clambered in and out of his lap and their parents filled their plates with Dominican delicacies and chattered happily in Spanish and English, Maddon had this revelation: “He said, ‘This is exactly what I grew up with,'” Amilcar Arroyo, a local businessman who was at that bash, recalled. “This is the way we Italians grew up. A mom and pop business, all the children around. He was touched by that reality.”



And thus began Maddon’s unlikely quest to save his city from the anti-Hispanic bigotry that was ripping it apart.

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Undefeated Rising Star David Benavidez Knocks Out Denis Douglin


Undefeated Rising Star David Benavidez Knocks Out Denis Douglin in Premier Boxing Champions on ESPN

David Benavidez vs Denis Douglin - 8.5.16_08_05_2016_Fight_Ryan Hafey _ Premier Boxing Champions (1)

Undefeated rising contender David “El Bandera Roja” Benavidez (16-0, 15 KOs) knocked out Denis Douglin (20-5, 13 KOs) in the 10-round main event of Premier Boxing Champions on ESPN and ESPN Deportes from the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia.

Douglin, who is trained by his mother Saphya, opened the fight very aggressive, stealing the first round on all three judges’ scorecards. Douglin continued to press the action, also winning the second round battle with two of the three judges, but Benavidez would soon settle in and take control of the war.

“I knew it was going to be a tough fight. I knew Douglin wasn’t going to go out without a fight,” said Benavidez. “So I came in here and started slower than I usually do, just using my jab a little bit more.”

The 19-year-old Benavidez made the necessary corrections in round three and never looked back, chipping away throughout the fourth and fifth rounds. In the sixth, Benavidez teed off on Douglin with damaging punches to both Douglin’s body and head.

In the seventh round, Benavidez was still having his way when one of the top turnbuckles gave out, causing the ropes on one side of the ring to collapse, and stopping the fight momentarily. When the action resumed, Douglin came forward with a flurry, but that burst of energy was short-lived.

Benavidez regained control in the eighth round, and in the ninth he scored the only knockdown of the fight. In the tenth and final frame, Benavidez threw a barrage of punches, several of which buckled Douglin, causing referee Gary Rosato to intervene and stop the fight at :35 into the round.

When asked about Douglin’s resilience, Benavidez said, “I hurt him a lot of times, but I kept my cool. I knew I was going to get him out of there sooner or later and that’s exactly what I did tonight. This is a good victory for me. Douglin is a tough veteran. He started fast and swinging wildly, and his offense probably looked better on-camera than it was, but he did what he had to do to survive until the final round.”

Benavidez continued, “It was important to me to get the stoppage and show everybody that I am just as strong in the late rounds as I am early on. I love this. This is what I signed up for. I want tough fights.”

A disappointed Douglin said, “I was in this fight, I just got winded. I was in great shape and everything, but I got winded there towards the end. Benavidez is a tough, young fighter. He was able to make me stay in there longer than I wanted to, but I feel good and I’ll be back.”

Benavidez concluded, “Right now, I would like to say that I don’t think about that. I’m just trying to progress in my career and I’m not trying to call anybody out. But if I do dream about fighting anybody, it would be whoever is the champion at that weight. I’m going to work hard to get to that spot.”

NY Mets Ace Closer Jeurys Familia on summer Issue Cover of LatinTRENDS Magazine

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Jeurys Familia, dynamic pitcher for the New York Mets, is LatinTRENDS’ August issue cover person. In this exclusive interview Familia talks about representing the Latino community, his community outreach program focused on foster children Familia’s Family, and what motivates him to succeed.


This month also includes interviews with Brazilian actor Rodrigo Santoro who stars as Jesus in this summer’s remake of “Ben Hur,” the sizzling Benjamin Bratt starring in “The Infiltrator” and beauty Ana Isabelle starring in “The Eyes.”

Urban music star De La Ghetto also speaks with LatinTRENDS about his new single “Acércate” from his new album “Mi Movimiento.”

In celebration of the New York Dominican Parade, LatinTRENDS identified 10 community influencers committed to engendering positive change within New York’s dynamic Dominican Community. The special feature includes interviews with the following influential men and women of various fields such as; law, music, fashion, STEM, business, politics and the arts.

Adriano Espaillat, New York State Senator and first Dominican-American elected to Congress; Los Hermanos Rosario;  Iconic merengue band “Los Hermanos Rosario” Members include Rafa, Luis and Tony Rosario; Angela Fernandez, Esq, Executive Director of Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights and Chair of the Board of Directors of the Dominican Parade; Carolina Torres, Activist and Girl Scout “Future Woman of Distinction Award” winner; Wilton Cedeno, Director of Energy Policy and Regulatory Affairs for Con Edison; Appointed by Mayor Deblasio to New York City Economic Development Corporation’s Board of Directors; Francisco Diaz, President of American Association of Latinos in STEM (AALSTEM); Rafael Alvarez, Founder, president & CEO of ATAX Franchise, Inc. and winner of the IFA’s Ronald E. Harrison Diversity Award; Cenia Paredes, Fashion designer and creator of Cenia Fit with a collection available at HSN; Rigo Peralta, Visual artist with exhibits in the Dominican Republic and the U.S. Juan J. Camilo, Founder and owner of Dyckman Beers Co.

The August issue also includes “South African Travel” and business guides “Live Video 101”and “Snapchat as a Personal Branding Tool for Business.”  Also see “How to Get Unstuck: A Mindful Approach” and “Resilience: The Secret to Wellbeing” for tips on constructing a meaningful life.

In addition and in celebration of this summer issue, LatinTRENDS will host an event in Times Square on August 8th, which will be attended by this issues in-book featured personalities and a significant group of community influencers, artist, entrepreneurs, bloggers, and the media.


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Laurie Hernandez, Young NJ Latina, Aims for Gold at the 2016 Rio Olympics



The first US-born Latina heading to the Summer Olympics since 1984 is Laurie Hernandez, from Old Bridge, NJ — not to mentioned one of the youngest has she recently turned 16, as reported by NBC.

So proud of everyone who competed I can finally say I’m representing USA at the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics. –Laurie Hernandez via Twitter (@lzhernandez02)

She tweeted her excitement as well as a big congratulations to her teammates. Hernandez is known for her vibrant routines and has been nicknamed the “human emoji” by International Gymnast Magazine and “baby Shakira” by the gymnastics podcast Gymastic. She went undefeated in four competitions she participated in, two international and two domestic, in 2015. She also won all-around gold as well as a silver and a bronze in the national champions. Will her skills bring home the gold in Women’s Gymnastics for the US? Watch her routines here at the Olympic Gymnastics Trials and you be the judge!

Soccer Legend David Villa Graces Cover of LatinTRENDS Magazine

Soccer Legend David Villa Graces Cover of LatinTRENDS Magazine. Read content of June issue below and see our exclusive behind the scene cover shoot video below.



Top scorer for the Spanish national soccer team, David Villa, who won the World Cup with Spain and the Champions League with Barcelona, is this month’s LatinTRENDS celebrated cover person. Now, the Spaniard has the tough task of rousing the passion of the fans for the recently created New York City FC (NYCFC) as a team captain. The team competes in the MLS (Major League Soccer) and has a long road ahead to win over the hearts of New Yorkers and the respect of the world. Villa spoke to LatinTRENDS about the challenge of joining the U.S. league and about his future plans. David is also a 2016 recipient of the Latino Trendsetter Awards, produced by LatinTRENDS.

Also in this issue, Secretary of State and presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton talks about the biggest problems facing Latinos, substance abuse, HIV and Puerto Rico’s ailing economy.

The voice behind Disney’s first Latina princess “Elena of Avalor,” Aimee Carrero, shares the story behind landing the role, Latino stereotypes and how much she has in common with her character. Also in film, founder and Executive Director of the Dominican Film Festival of New York (DFFNY), Armando Guareño describes how he meshed his love of cinema and his love for the Dominican Republic.

Latin Grammy Award-winning music director Kacho Lopez talks about working with Calle 13 and what it was like directing the music video “Ojos color sol, starring Gael Garcia Bernal. And Leslie Grace continues to shine bright with a new single “Aire” alongside urban music artist Maluma.

It’s time to travel and this month, LatinTRENDS shares “The Most Romantic Getaways Around the World, and for help living out travel dreams, see “Experiential Tips for Travel on a Budget.” What is the best beach read this summer? Carmen Rita’s “Never Too Real,” debut novel about jet setting and uber successful Latinas set in dazzling New York. The lively read was inspired by the former CNBC “On the Money” host’s real-life amigas.

To complete this issue’s business section, LatinTRENDS offers “5 Ways To Make Money From Your High-traffic Blog,” and “7 Steps to Creating Meaningful Professional Connections.”


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Carmelo Anthony speaks about his Puerto Rican roots

New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony speaks about his Latin (Puerto Rican) roots and what it means to him. He has warm memories of his Dad, who was born in Puerto Rico, but died when Carmelo was just a toddler.


Carmelo Anthony appeared On October 2012 Cover of LatinTRENDS Magazine (see below). Click on link to Purchase that issue & see others:





What You Didn’t Know about Carmelo Anthony


Carmelo Anthony was born in Brooklyn, New York to an African American mother, Mary and Puerto Rican father who he is named after. He is the youngest of four and before his third birthday his father passed away , leaving Mary a struggling single mother.

While his mother worked as a housekeeper, his much older siblings helped to raise him as they lived in the projects of Red Hook. To pass the time, Anthony would watch hours of March Madness and NBA Playoff games.

After the passing of his father, his life would go on to change more once his siblings went on their own paths and left home. This time around, Mary had to take care of Anthony on her own and she moved her son to Baltimore when he was eight. What she didn’t know was that the area called the “The Pharmacy,” was plagued by drugs, prostitution and crime.

To keep her son away from trouble she threatened to keep him off the basketball court if he didn’t behave. This incentive would later help him in his high school, college and NBA career as a basketball player. By 1999, the high school sophomore from Towson Catholic High School was becoming one of the best ball players in the Baltimore area.

Although he was 6’5″, Anthony and his mother knew he wasn’t ready for the big leagues of basketball yet.  To keep from slipping with grades in school, Anthony later attended the strict Oak Hill Academy, and worked out more so that he would go from a skinny high school basketball player to become a possible division one college prospect. By the time he graduated he went to Syracuse University where he shined by helping the team out of a slump to become a winning streak that led to the Big East Tournament semifinals.

From this point, the freshman and his teammates knew he had what it would take to join the NBA. He left college, with his coach’s support, and he became part of the top three picks in the NBA for 2003. He was selected by the much beleaguered Denver Nuggets. Once again, this time he went even further than his college team and brought the Nuggets to the playoffs, and later that year helped the U.S. win a bronze medal in the Olympics.

More change would come in Anthony’s life. His behavior on and off the court started leading to his reputation as being “thug like,” and he knew that he quickly had to change his ways. In 2008, the U.S. Olympic team would win a gold medal at the Beijing games redeeming themselves from the previous Olympics. When it came to playing in the U.S., the Nuggets went through turnover after turnover with coaches. After eight years with the Nuggets, Anthony was traded for the Knicks.

If there was anyone to help mellow Anthony out during that transition to the Knicks, it was Alani “La La” Vasquez, his girlfriend since 2004. In 2007, the couple welcomed their only child, son Kiyan and by 2010 the couple had married shortly before the trade announcement. In 2011, the Knicks made it to the playoffs and Anthony tied his postseason personal high of 42 points. Now, Anthony is playing for the team that he grew up watching during his childhood.

Fun Facts

  • Anthony is the only player to be on all three of EA Sports basketball covers
  • He donated $35,000 to the Indian Ocean Tsunami relief efforts
  • He won the Big East Rookie of the Year Award 10 times surpassing Allen Iverson even though he was in college for one year
  • He says he has a pet camel
  • Carmelo Anthony became the sixth youngest and the 40th player to score 20,000 points in his career this year


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Cuban Yoan Moncada gets $31 Million to Play for Boston. Could this be a New Type of Cuban Defection?

December of 1997, Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez found himself stranded on a nameless rock in the middle of the sea. Fourteen years later, Yasiel Puig found himself in an anonymous hotel room, staring at a gun held by an alleged member of Los Zetas, a notorious Mexican drug cartel.

And then there’s Cuba’s latest great athletic export: Yoan Moncada, a 19-year old prospect who suddenly appeared in Guatemala, without a harrowing defector tale and seemingly with Cuban officials’ blessing, even though he had yet to swing a bat in any league outside of Cuba. The Boston Red Sox won a bidding war, lavishing the shortstop with a $31.5 million signing bonus.

For the past two decades, Cuban ballplayers have found various illegal and illicit means to arrive at the shining diamonds of America’s major league cities. It took 10 years for the first 30 Cuban ballplayers to leave Cuba. Now there are roughly another 75 Cuban players searching for contracts, according to

Jesse Sanchez, all of whom presumably not only defected but, like El Duque, Puig and many others, were smuggled out of Cuba.

What started as a trickle is becoming a strong current of Cuban talent flowing along a pipeline that started with Rene Arocha’s defection in 1991. The stream of Cuban talent would be unremarkable except for the international set of circumstances in which Cuban ballplayers operate in order to pursue their craft outside of Cuba.

The world became aware of Moncada when he starred for Cuba’s national team at the U16 IBAF 2011 World Baseball Championships in Lagos de Moreno, Mexico, as the only Cuban named to the tournament’s All-Star team. Born in the Las Quinientas neighborhood of Abreus in the province of Cienfuegos, he led Cuba’s U16 national league in batting average (.500), OBP (.643), slugging (.918), home runs (8) and walks (37) while going 15-for-15 in stolen bases as a 15-year-old.

So how did Moncada manage to make such a routine exit from Cuba despite falling under MLB’s recent, somewhat confusing rules for signing international free agents?

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