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MTV TJ Lavin on 'The Challenge: All Stars 3'

The finale of “The Challenge: USA” was very divisive among fans of the show and competitors, and it was made all the more controversial after Tyson Apostol’s exit interview with Entertainment Weekly was released.

One former competitor from the CBS spinoff was very open with his thoughts on social media as the finale aired, especially regarding Desi Williams’ elimination following her partner Enzo Palumbo quitting in the first leg.

“Lol this Final is a damn mess. #TheChallengeUSA,” James Wallington tweeted as the finale aired.

He then added in a now-deleted tweet saved on Reddit, Enzo, enough with your apologies. What an absolute joke. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! [Desi] deserved better… Oh and here’s a thought… Let Desi continue and pair her with the solo female in the final. LIKE WTF?! Infuriated.” He also wrote:

Justice for @DesiJWilliams. ???? She deserved better. #TheChallengeUSA

— James Wallington (@JamesWallington) September 15, 2022

In response to a fan’s response, James added, “The final eventually turned to individuals, so Desi teaming up with another female partner for parts of it wouldn’t have mattered in the long run.” He also said, “Doesn’t mean anyone has to agree with how it’s handled. It’s a shame.” James isn’t the first “Challenge” competitor who said Desi should have been able to compete with the solo woman since there was one less male cast member in the final.

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James Criticized the Algorithm & a Few Elements of the Show But He Was Very Grateful for the Opportunity to Compete

James also made some claims about the season and wrote, “This final is indicative to how the entire experience was for so many of us. I’ll say that much. #TheChallengeUSA.” He then added in a now-deleted tweet one of his complaints about the season. “The Algorithm: it was messy & chaotic all season long & was ultimately the downfall for a lot of great competitors this season… unfortunately for Desi, it affected her in the final,” he wrote. James also said:

Certain elements & decisions that were made throughout the season were tough/challenging to navigate at times (which I understand because it’s The Challenge after all)… but as a viewer, the Final felt the same way.

In addition to James’ comments, one fan of the show wrote, “I don’t understand the point of #TheChallengeUSA. Was it to break all these incredible players? Like to show it’s so hard? We root for these people. We don’t actually want to see them quit or get hypothermia or injured. What went wrong here?”

Finalist Domenick Abbate wrote, “Everything.” James replied simply, “Dom,” with a purple heart. He then concluded that he was very grateful to have competed on “The Challenge: USA” and said, “I loved meeting everyone, competing & putting on that uniform… However, it doesn’t mean I have to love everything about the experience & that’s okay.”

Many OG Stars Had Similar Criticisms to James Regarding the Finale

Certain elements & decisions that were made throughout the season were tough/challenging to navigate at times (which I understand because it’s The Challenge after all)… but as a viewer, the Final felt the same way.

— James Wallington (@JamesWallington) September 15, 2022

There were a lot of OG “Challenge” stars who also spoke up about the finale and said they had concerns with what went down, including Rachel Robinson, Janelle Casanave, Derek Chavez and KellyAnne Judd.

Perhaps the most outspoken was Teck Holmes, who made his return on “All Stars” and quickly became a fan favorite. He shared Tyson’s Entertainment Weekly interview and thanked him and the writer Sydney Bucksbaum for “keeping it real.” He added, “Next season of the @thechallenge should be called ‘Lies, Lies, & More Lies’ because there will definitely be plenty coming from production! #Facts #DoBetter.”

He also said it was like on “All Stars” and they “got screwed,” adding, “so I say screw the Challenge.”

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Bulls Floated as Potential Landing Spot for Playoff-Tested Veteran

Getty Jae Crowder #99 of the Phoenix Suns looks on.

At this point, what you see is most likely what you will get as far as the Chicago Bulls roster. General manager Marc Eversley said on draft night that he did not foresee any singular action that would suddenly turn them into a title contender presenting itself this offseason.

That could change at any time and there is some expectation that the Bulls will be involved in a big mid-season move one way or the other.

Which direction the season is going will go a long way toward determining what they do.

If they are having a successful season and remain in the thick of the Eastern Conference playoff race, the Bulls will need to find veteran reinforcements for an extended postseason run. Ideally, they would be able to add one with plenty of experience in such situations. There might be an option that is readily available too.

Bulls Could Take Advantage of PHX

A team such as the Bulls that is short on tradeable assets must know when to take advantage of a bargain. In sports, that usually means taking advantage of teams looking to tank. We already know the Bulls’ aversion to the luxury tax will keep them out of many potential deals. But, they could take advantage of another type of fire sale.

The Phoenix Suns are on the market in the wake of team governor Robert Sarver’s decision to sell in light of his suspension for unethical behavior. They open training camp on September 27 but they will apparently be down a player in forward Jae Crowder.

That is where the Bulls could step in.

I will take one (1) BOSSMAN on the Chicago Bulls

— Will Gottlieb (@wontgottlieb) September 24, 2022

Earlier this summer, the 10-year veteran shared a tweet that many felt was also about his Suns future which is in question as he heads into the final year of a three-year, $29 million deal.


Perhaps he can do that while bringing some toughness to the Bulls.

The Bulls could trade Coby White along with one of Javonte Green or Marko Simonovic for Crowder while remaining under the luxury tax.

Crowder on the Bulls

Crowder, 32, averaged 9.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 1.9 assists for the Suns last season. There was some chatter that he was fading after he shot just 34.8% from downtown. And he has just two seasons shooting the long ball above 35% in his career; most recently in 2021 when he shot 38.9% on 6.3 attempts per game.

The 6-foot-6 forward did shoot over 36% on catch-and-shoot threes in the regular season. But the postseason was rough as Crowder could only knock down 30% of his threes overall and 29% on catch-and-shoot looks.

However, he brings value in other ways than an ability to stretch the floor.


— JAE CROWDER (@CJC9BOSS) September 19, 2022

As for talk of Crowder’s defense falling off, he still ranked in the 64th percentile last season, per Cleaning the Glass.

Only Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso can boast that among the Bulls’ rotation players.

Bulls Need Defense, Toughness

Getting Patrick Williams for a full season will be a major boon for the Bulls if he stays healthy this season. But they are still thin behind him and Crowder offers all of the things a team with playoff aspirations should be targeting.

The Bulls are limiting themselves by avoiding the luxury tax but they are not without options.

It might have to be closer to the deadline. But Crowder, who started all 67 of his appearances last season, could follow a similar path to DeMar DeRozan and find a new NBA life with the Bulls.

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