Jordan Gala Enters the Willennium

jordanmci.jpgHighlighting a weekend of golf (and how often is that phrase used when an explosive sex scandal isn’t involved?) was the Aria gala for the Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational on April 5.

You could’ve fielded the greatest pan-sport all-star team of the ’80s and ’90s with some of the attendees, including Jordan himself, Jerry Rice, Roger Clemens, Vince Coleman and Wayne Gretzky. You’d also have to play some sort of on-ice basefootbasketball, which we wouldn’t recommend.

But the gala also went heavy on entertainers, including Chevy Chase, Stuart Scott (fine—that’s an overly liberal use of the word “entertainer”) and Will Smith, who has lost so much weight it looks like he’s getting ready for a role in Philadelphia 2: West Philadelphia Born and Raised. Wayne Brady and former castmate Jonathan Mangum co-hosted the night, with Brady calling Smith “Fresh Prince” when he was querying the audience for improv ideas. Though, to be fair, if Alfonso Ribeiro were there, Brady would have called him “Oh God, I’m so sorry but I have no idea what your actual name is, Carlton.”

Blue Man Group came out to perform before John Legend, who did “Green Light,” while Jordan thanked everyone for coming, but said he was looking forward to winning the tourney on April 7. Which he didn’t, as the team of Ozzie Smith and Coleman came in at 11 under par. It was easy for them to stay ahead of the foursome behind them, what with Smith gloving down every drive that came their way. You ever try to putt with someone turning backflips on the green? It’s distracting.

Country Music Has Its Shining Moment

Before the 48th annual Academy of Country Music Awards, there was a big fan expo at the Orleans Arena that included a Great Outdoors Archery Event on April 5. Luke Bryan, one of the co-hosts of the awards show, fired arrows at a picture of the other co-host, Blake Shelton.
Then Bryan went on to win Entertainer of the Year at the MGM Grand Garden Arena event, while Shelton’s wife, Miranda Lambert, won Female Vocalist of the Year, Single Record of the Year for “Only You” and Song of the Year for the same. In fact, the only nod Shelton got was as a co-composer on Lambert’s Song of the Year win.

What we’re trying to say is: Luke Bryan totally has archery-related voodoo powers, you guys.

Sheryl Crow and Darius Rucker, two staples of ’90s adult contemporary who somehow have been lumped into the country scene later in their careers, both had a presence in the weekend. Crow did “If it Makes You Happy” with Dierks Bentley at the Kix Brooks-hosted ACM Party for a Cause Festival on April 5 at the Orleans Arena, which also saw Tim McGraw and the Duck Dynasty guys present checks to various charities. Rucker hosted a charity golf tournament at TPC Las Vegas that somehow didn’t include any swamp people.

Another One for the Road

Wherever there are topless women, you’ll find Leonardo DiCaprio. Frankly, it’s a smart way to live. But he was at Bare on April 6, kicking it in a private cabana with friends. … Tao marked its seventh anniversary April 6 with a Seven Deadly Sins party headlined by Snoop Dogg. Didn’t realize that “getting blazed” was up there with wrath and envy. It was also a weekend-long birthday party for Strategic Group managing partner Jason Strauss, who celebrated at Lavo, Tao and Marquee along with a rotating cast of Wilmer Valderrama, Rumer Willis and boyfriend Jayson Blair, Mark Salling and Busta Rhymes. … XS also celebrated its fourth anniversary on April 5, with David Guetta taking the helm.

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