BLACKPINK’s ‘Ice Cream’ racks up 400 million views on YouTube

An image celebrating BLACKPINK’s new YouTube milestone. YG Entertainment via The Korea Herald/Asia News Network

SEOUL — K-pop girl group BLACKPINK’s music video “Ice Cream” has topped 400 million views on YouTube, its management agency said Tuesday.

The music video hit the milestone around 2 p.m. Monday, some 80 days after its release, according to YG Entertainment.

It is the quartet’s 10th music video that has surpassed the 400 million mark on the global video-sharing website.

“Ice Cream,” featuring Selena Gomez, is a bubblegum pop track off the band’s latest album, titled “The Album.”

The song debuted at No. 13 on Billboard’s main singles chart in September, the highest position ever attained by a K-pop girl group, and remained on the chart for eight weeks.

BLACKPINK is currently the second most-subscribed global musician on YouTube, with 53.1 million subscribers, following Justin Bieber. The group now has a total of 22 music videos with over 100 million views.

Last week, the quartet was chosen as “the biggest band in the world” on Bloomberg’s Pop Star Power Rankings, a first for an Asian musical act. Yonhap

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In battle of gunners, TNT hopes defense holds up


SMART CLARK GIGA CITY — Facing a much-improved enemy, TNT hopes it has been able to make out of its tweaks and calibrations when it plunges into semifinal action with Phoenix Super LPG this Wednesday.

Coach Bong Ravena hopes his charges have shed their iffy habits on defense, especially against a Fuel Masters side that has become deadlier with Calvin Abueva.

“I just hope for consistency. Our offense could take care of itself,” he told the Inquirer. “It’s simple. If we make stops, we get to execute. So we’re really more concerned with how we make stops.”

Such a guarded approach was shared by Roger Pogoy, Tropang Giga’s dead-eye shooter who has emerged as the team’s most potent scorer in this conference.

The Gilas Pilipinas gunner said their opponents have become a totally different squad with Abueva in the fold.

“We all know just how much he contributes,” he said in Filipino during an episode of “Sports Page” on Monday. “Calvin is a huge difference-maker.”

Abueva has made Phoenix a better squad since he returned. With the do-it-all forward back, the Fuel Masters have won five of its six games during the elimination phase. He was also crucial in the Fuel Masters’ triumph over red-hot Magnolia during the quarterfinals.

“We definitely got to defend and try to stay disciplined with our system,” added Ray Parks Jr., Tropang Giga’s two-way guard. “They’re going to come out strong.”

TNT indeed has to be stingier on defense, as they are on a collision course with the second-best scoring team of this tournament. The two teams tangle at 3:45 p.m.

Phoenix has scored an average of 100 points in the tournament, just second to NLEX’s 105. The Fuel Masters are also the third most accurate club from deep, having a conversion rate

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Ex-footballer Obodo escapes from Nigeria kidnappers

Nigerian Christian Obodo (18) jubilates after scoring the first goal during the knock-out round football match between Nigeria and Zimbabwe in the Group D of the African Nations Cup (CAN) in Port Said, north of Cairo 27 January 2006. Nigeria won the match 2-0. AFP PHOTO/ISSOUF SANOGO (Photo by ISSOUF SANOGO / AFP)

Former Nigeria midfielder Christian Obodo, who spent over a decade in Serie A, including spells with Fiorentina and Udinese, said Monday that he had escaped from suspected kidnappers in the country’s oil-rich Delta state.

Obodo was driving around the southern city of Warri on Sunday when he said two armed men forced themselves inside his car.

“They pushed my girlfriend out of the car,” he told AFP by phone, adding that a third gunman drove in a car behind them.

“I was praying and trying to hold a conversation with them asking them what have I done, but they barked at me and told me to keep quiet and that if I make any sound I was going to be killed.”

The 36-year-old who was a regular in the Nigeria team between 2003 and 2008, described how they drove around town for several hours until the two men asked him to stop the car and stepped out to go and speak with their accomplice in the car behind.

“I looked behind and sensing a little ease, I sped off,” he said.

Police spokesperson Onome Onowakpoyeya confirmed that Obodo was briefly abducted and released.

“I wasn’t harmed in any way and nothing was taken from me,” said Obodo.

Kidnappings for ransom by criminal gangs are common in Africa’s most populous country, in particular in the oil-producing Delta region.

Obodo was abducted in the same area in 2012, and rescued a day later in a police raid. His kidnappers

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