NEW YORK -- Marking the 67th anniversary of the day Jackie Robinson broke baseballs colour barrier, the Rev. Jesse Jackson praised Commissioner Bud Selig for the strides the sport has taken in minority opportunities over the past two decades. Jackson travelled to baseballs 1992 winter meetings to criticize its lack of minorities in management, and he pushed for change. Selig retired Robinsons No. 42 in 1997 on the 50th anniversary of the big league debut of the Brooklyn Dodgers first baseman. Selig established a Diverse Business Partners program the following year and in 1999 started requiring clubs to consider at least one minority for each manager and major executive opening. MLB also sponsors 35 Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholars. Jackson said Jackie Robinson Day had become "a national holiday for all practical purposes." "To honour Jackie in this way honours the best in America," Jackson told Selig on Tuesday at MLBs third Diversity Business Summit. "In many ways, had Jackie not succeeded you could not have Atlanta Falcons or the Braves or the Carolina Panthers. You could not have these southern teams if Jackie had failed." Robinsons daughter, Sharon, presented Selig with a large plaque. Jackson spoke from the audience after Seligs speech and told him "you took to heart that challenge." "I guess if youre commissioner long enough, things can turn around," Selig said later. For the first time since Robinsons number was retired, no players in the major leagues were wearing No. 42. Players using the number were grandfathered at the time of Seligs announcement, and the last to use No. 42 was Yankees reliever Mariano Rivera, who retired at the end of last season. "Today all of our players league-wide will wear No. 42 to celebrate the man who helped change the future course of our game and more importantly our country," Selig said. A ceremony had been scheduled for Yankee Stadium to unveil a plaque commemorating Nelson Mandelas visit to the old Bronx ballpark in 1990. The Yankees game against the Chicago Cubs was rained out, and the ceremony, which includes Zondwa Mandela, a grandson of the late South African president, was pushed back until Wednesday evening. Selig frequently points out that Robinsons first game occurred more than a year before President Harry Truman desegregated the U.S. military and seven years before the Supreme Courts Brown v. Board of Education decision that ruled state laws requiring segregated public schools were unconstitutional. "Baseball must continue to be more than just a game on the field," Selig said. "The games remarkable ability to serve as a common bond should be used to create opportunities for all people regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation or gender." Selig became acting commissioner in 1992 and got the job permanently in 1998. He plans to retire in January. He said the Diverse Business Partners program had led to purchases of more than $1 billion in goods and services from minority- and women-owned businesses. But the percentage of African-American players in the major leagues has been cut in half since peaking at about 18 per cent at times from the mid-1970s to mid-1980s. Seattle Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon, who is black, says some of this generations players dont know of Robinsons accomplishments. "They dont know a lot about the history, and I dont really blame it all on them. I think their generation is a generation that was force-fed these things," he said, holding up a smart phone. "Everythings now. Not much of an appreciation for the past and what it meant, particularly when it comes to baseball and baseball players. The paths that were paved for them, I dont think they really get it, or really understand it." Cheap Adidas Shoes Wholesale .Derrick Rose scored 23 points, and the Bulls pulled away from the Nets for a 105-80 victory on Wednesday night. Chicago held Brooklyn to 29 points on 26. Cheap Adidas Shoes From China . Ferrer was unable to find his rhythm in losing 6-4, 6-2 to Teymuraz Gabashvili in his opening match while Nadal struggled past fellow Spanish player Albert Ramos 7-6 (2), 6-4. Nadal eventually overcame his 103rd-ranked opponent to reach the third round, rebounding from a surprise loss to Ferrer in the Monte Carlo Masters quarterfinals. http://www.cheapadidas.us/.Just like old times.Only this time, just one got to enjoy a victory.James return to Miami as an opponent was a success — for the Heat, that is. Wade scored 24 of his 31 points in the first half, Luol Deng had 25 points and dogged James defensively all night, and the Heat beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 101-91 in a hyped Christmas matchup Thursday. Cheap Adidas Shoes Free Shipping .J. -- The New York Jets have promoted Tony Sparano Jr. Cheap Adidas Shoes Online China . Rob Klinkhammer and Mikkel Boedker scored 63 seconds apart in the first period for the Coyotes, who handed the Kings their third straight loss and took over sole possession of eighth place in the Western Conference. Mike Smith made 36 saves.Stefan (Skyscraper) Struve showed early on in his UFC career that he should never be counted out. At UFC 99 in Cologne, Germany, in June 2009, the six-foot-11 Dutch heavyweight was gushing blood out of his forehead after taking a string of hammer blows from Denis Stojnic while on his back in the first round. Stojnics forearm looked as if it had been dipped in blood. But a bloody Struve rallied in the second round to take Stojnics back and choke him out. The German crowd roared as Struve, his face a crimson mask and long torso tinged red from blood, rose in victory. "Thats one hell of a Band-Aid," UFC president Dana White said dryly, referring to a plaster the size of a cigarette package on Struves forehead at the post-fight news conference. Struves size -- he is the tallest fighter in UFC history and is tied for longest reach with light-heavyweight champ Jon Jones -- combined with slick kickboxing and submission skills have helped him rise up the heavyweight ranks while compiling a 9-4 record in the UFC. But his career appeared over last year when he was diagnosed with a rare heart condition. Given the OK to resume fighting by his doctors in the Netherlands and the UFCs cardiologist, Struve (29-6) returns to the cage Saturday when he takes on Matt Mitrione at UFC 175 in Las Vegas. "It looks good," Struve, who divides his training between the Netherlands and Los Angeles. "I just need to do checkups two times a year with my doctors in Holland and two times a year with my doctors in LA. "Thats no problem for me. I actually like that I know for sure that my heart is healthy." Mitrione (7-3) is a former NFL defensive lineman who switched to MMA via Season 10 of "The Ultimate Fighter" reality TV show in 2009. Struve, ranked 12th among heavyweight contenders, last fought in March 2013 when he suffered a broken jaw in a knockout loss to hard-hitting Mark Hunt in Japan. Struve says he had been sick for six weeks before the bout and was still under the weather during the fight. "I felt horrible." And he just couldnt recover after. "I just couldnt get over the jet lag. I couldnt sleep at night," he said. "I just didnt feel good and I didnt have any energy." He returned to full training some three months after the loss. Then one day at his parents house, he got dizzy standing up after working at the computer. He sat down and blacked out briefly, "which scared me because I had nevver had that.dddddddddddd" He went to the hospital, which couldnt find anything but asked him to come back for a stress ultrasound test which uses high frequency sound waves to examine the hearts anatomy and function. "Thats where they found it," he said. Struve was diagnosed with a leaking aortic valve, as well an enlarged heart. It meant that his heart was only pumping 60 per cent of his blood into the aorta and then the rest of his body. The remaining 40 per cent was ending up back in the heart chamber. Doctors used medication to control his blood pressure and the demands on his heart. Struve says he will probably have to undergo surgery at some point but hopes to do it after his fighting career. "As it is right now, its getting better every day," he said. He kept training throughout, raising his regimen as his health improved. He also taught MMA, which he said he enjoyed immensely. "I just enjoy being healthy and living a good life," he said. "I love this sport." MMA takes a toll, however. While Struve puts on exciting fights, he has endured punishing knockouts losses at the hands of Junior Dos Santos, Roy (Big Country) Nelson, Travis Browne and Hunt. The big Dutchman says he feels a lot more energy these days. "And a lot more joy in life, if you want to say so, because if you feel tied all day long, youre just miserable." But Struve says he may have taken time off from fighting even if it hadnt had the heart scare. He had plenty on his mind. "This was by far the hardest year of my life," he added. "Not only because of this but my father passed away in October after being sick for a year and a half. And then there were some other things that happened close to me that really impacted me." Back training, his performance in the gym gives him confidence that ring rust wont be an issue Saturday night. While Struve says he has got on well with Mitrione in the past, he says its a "little strange" the American asked for the fight before he was cleared to compete again. Middleweight champion Chris Weidman defends his title against former light-heavyweight champion Lyoto (The Dragon) Machida -- ranked No. 3 among 185-pound contenders -- in the main event at the Mandalay Bay Events Center. Womens bantamweight title-holder (Rowdy) Ronda Rousey takes on No. 2 Alexis Davis, a native of Port Colborne, Ont., who fights out of San Jose, in the co-main event. Wholesale Hoodies NFL Shirts Outlet Jerseys NFL Wholesale Cheap NFL Jerseys Free Shipping Wholesale Jerseys Cheap Cheap NFL Jerseys China Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys ' ' '