This Week In Good Black News: Ashanti and Nelly Are Engaged and Expecting Their First Child, Nicki Minaj Debuts Sneaker Collection, and Tyler Perry Signs Multi-Year Deal With BET

Plus, Allen Iverson's statue is unveiled in Philadelphia and the USA Men's Olympic Basketball Team is announced.


1. Ashanti and Nelly Announce Engagement and Pregnancy

After getting back together following years of being separated, Ashanti and Nelly have announced their engagement and that they are expecting their first child together.

Taking to Instagram, Ashanti gave a behind-the-scenes look at how she was prepping for a show. Her mother asked her if she needed more time. Ashanti replied, "Yeah, about nine months."

Ashanti also shared the news in an official statement.

"This new year of my life is such a blessing full of love, hope, and anticipation," Ashanti said. "Motherhood is something that I have looked forward to, and sharing this with my family, fiancé, and loyal fans, who have been so supportive of my career, is an amazing experience."

Congratulations to the lovely couple!

2. Nicki Minaj and Løci Partner For Exclusive Launch Of Vegan Sneaker Collection

Rap superstar Nicki Minaj is expanding her brand in the fashion world with the release of her first sneaker collection. The “Nicki Minaj x LØCI” is a partnership with the urban luxury vegan sneaker and apparel brand, LØCI.

Ranging from p $185 to $200, the collection features 11 unique styles of unisex bio leather shoes, with a logo on the tongue that pays homage to Minaj as the “Queen of Rap” and the British roots of the brand. 

On Instagram, Minaj expressed her gratitude to the Barbz for their support and emphasized her ownership stake in the business venture. 

“4/12 = 11 new pairs of my OWN sneakers. 11 completely different designs for you to choose from. An absolute dream come true. I can’t WAIT for you guys to see my 1st collection!!!! Link in bio to SIGN UP NOW!!!!! 🩷 Thank you to my team for helping me make this dream come to fruition,” she wrote. “This isn’t a sponsorship. I’m an owner & partner 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽😅 & we will be showing you the first complete collection on 4/12. Love you BARBZ. THANK YOU.”

3. Tyler Perry Agrees To Multi-Year Deal With BET Media Group

Tyler Perry is coming back for more. The entertainment mogul has agreed to a new multiyear deal with BET Media Group.

Taking to Instagram, Perry expressed his excitement about the new deal.

“SISTAS is and has been the number one series across ALL TV among Black audiences and we also have five of the top 10 series on cable among Black viewers,” Perry wrote. “You, my audience, and the thousands of people who may have never gotten a chance in this business are my reason to keep going. Thank you again, I never take this for granted.”

Under the terms of the deal, Perry “will deliver hundreds of new episodes to BET and BET+” and BET Media Group has picked up new seasons of 8 current and one brand new series. Shows such as Tyler Perry’s Sistas, Tyler Perry’s The Oval, Tyler Perry’s Assisted Living, Tyler Perry’s House of Payne, and House of Payne have all been renewed. Also, Tyler Perry’s ZATIMA, Tyler Perry’s Ruthless, All The Queen’s Men, Tyler Perry’s BRUH, and Tyler Perry’s Route 187, a new crime drama, will all air in 2025.

4. Allen Iverson Gets Statue in Philadelphia

NBA legend Allen Iverson is forever immortalized with a statue of his likeness now placed at the Sixers practice facility at an unveiling ceremony on Friday, April 12.

“This is such an honor, man, and it don’t even feel real,” an emotional Iverson, 48, said to the crowd. “I don’t get nervous too much, but just seeing so many people in here that I love … just want to say all the right things and just want you all to know that I appreciate you all.”

In 12 seasons with the Sixers, Iverson ranks second in franchise history in career points (19,931), third in points per game (27.6). Also, “The Answer” is one of only five Sixers players to win an NBA MVP, along with Wilt Chamberlain, Julius “Dr. JmErving, Moses Malone, and Joel Embiid.

5. LeBron James, Stephen Curry, and Kevin Durant To Lead USA Men’s Olympic Team

The USA Basketball Men’s National Team has assembled the league’s best players to ensure that they will bring home the gold medal with LeBron James, Stephen Curry, and Kevin Durant leading the way.

Grant Hill, the USA Basketball Men’s National Team managing director who selected the squad, shared his excitement about the team.

“It’s an honor to introduce the 2024 USA Basketball Men’s National Team,” Hill said. “I’m grateful to these 12 men for their commitment to represent USA Basketball. The United States is home to some of the best basketball players in the world and I appreciate the vast interest in being part of this roster. These decisions weren’t easy, but it was a pleasure to go through the process and reach this outcome. 

Rounding out the roster are  Joel Embiid, Kawhi Leonard, Anthony Davis, Jayson Tatum, Devin Booker, Jrue Holiday, Bam Adebayo, Anthony Edwards and Tyrese Haliburton.

6.  James Harden and EST Gee Release Film To Celebrate The Release of His Latest Signature Show

James Harden has released a new film with adidas Basketball, titled “UNO,” which captures his latest signature shoe, the Harden Volume 8. Shot at Artesia High School in Lakewood, CA,  Hardens’s former high school, the film conveys the purpose of  Harden’s “Under No One” mentality.

 EST Gee, Harden’s favorite rapper, provided the voiceover for the film which was produced, and Kenneth Wynn who also penned the script.

In a statement, Harden shared his vision for the short film.

“UNO means number 1, but also means ‘Under No One.’ We feel like we are the biggest, we don’t put ourselves under anyone. We are very respectful, but we carry ourselves with a different swagger and confidence than a lot of people,” Harden said.

The Harden Vol 8's are available at

7. Arena Football League Relaunches With First Black Commissioner

The Arena Football League is set to make its return in 2024 after a four-year hiatus and Lee A. Hutton, III, the commissioner of the league, made history as the first Black commissioner of an American professional sports league. The league will consist of 16 teams representing Austin, Texas; Boise, Idaho; Bakersfield, Calif.; Chicago; Denver; St. Paul, Minn.; Lake Charles, La.; Cincinnati; Orlando, Fla.; Salem, Ore.; Philadelphia; San Antonio; Tallahassee, Fla.; Nashville, Tenn.; Everett, Wash.; and Odessa, Texas.

8. Eric 'Shake' James Honors ‘414 Day’ With addias Collaboration

Sneaker legend and philanthropist Eric “Shake” James celebrated “414 Day” with a collaboration with adidas and a community giveaway in Milwaukee. To pay homage to the day, adidas released a limited-edition, collaborative Rivalry Low release that features the colors of the city. The weekend also featured a performance from rap icon Lil Kim.

Shake also partnered with adidas Cornerstone Community for local events along with his organization J.A.Y. Academy, named after his friend and hip-hop legend Jam Master Jay. Along with adidas, Shake over the next year will offer wellness workshops, professional development programming, develop a community space, and award grant scholarships to participating local youth and underserved communities.

Shake shared the importance of working with adidas to impact the city with the J.A.Y. Academy.

Adidas would always send me shoes but it was never like 50 pairs. One day I asked for 50 pairs of shoes and they said, ‘Okay, anything else? Then I asked, ‘What about backpacks? So in 2008, I did a back-to-school giveaway with 50 sneakers,50  backpacks, and 50 pairs of socks in Jay’s name. Last year, we gave away 1001 pairs of sneakers, Shake told BET. “So that took me down this nonprofit journey.”

“It's unfortunate that Blacks spend the most money in the fashion industry, but we don't own a lot,” he continued. I just want to teach them that there's money to be made in the industry. I want to leave them with the message that they can be anything they want and to dream big.”

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