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Celts draw first blood

Pound listless Cavaliers NEW YORK (AFP) - Jaylen Brown scored 23 points and Al Horford added 20 to power the Boston Celtics over Cleveland 108-83 Sunday, humbling LeBron James and his Cavaliers teammates in their NBA playoff series opener. The Celtics seized the lead in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference finals,….....»»

Category: newsSource: journal journalMay 14th, 2018

Warriors dominance in the West shows no sign of relenting

By Shaun Powell, NBA.com We have reached the point in this Golden State Warriors’ chokehold on the Western Conference where it turns spooky: The last team out West to deny the Warriors (technically) no longer exists. Yes, the LA Clippers are still right where they’ve always been. But all other traces of May 3, 2014, when they beat the Warriors in the first round of the playoffs, have turned to dust. Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, JJ Redick, DeAndre Jordan, Jamal Crawford -- they’re all gone. Usually, it’s the loser who feels the cold repercussions and fallout of a first-round defeat in the playoffs. But what’s often lost as the Warriors run the table in the West is how they’ve shattered so many teams, schemes and dreams along the way. In hindsight, four years ago was not the beginning of “Lob City” and the Clippers. It was the beginning of their end. The wreckage left behind by the Warriors over the ensuing 53 months underlines the undeniable truth: They’ve taken ownership of their very own West Side Story. They had a record-setting 73-win regular season. They’ve won 12 straight West payoff series (and 15 of 16 playoff series overall). Only twice – the West finals in 2016 and '18 -- did they endure the indignity of needing to survive Game 7 in the West playoffs. In short, this dynasty shows no signs of dying this season. If anything, the argument can be made -- even before it’s proven as fact -- that the 2018-19 Warriors are their most talented team yet. All-Stars Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson welcomed a fifth, DeMarcus Cousins, to their mix this summer. That is not typical in the NBA, folks. “This," Durant said, "is going to be an exciting season. Fun.” The Warriors’ five All-Stars (two of whom are former Kia MVPs) are still in their prime. And given that Andre Iguodala tends to transform from a fossil to an X-factor when spring arrives, perhaps only injury or another uncontrollable circumstance will keep the Warriors from making it an NBA-record five straight Western Conference crowns. “In terms of encouraging each other, being in tune with some of the things that might be thrown at you, whether it's injuries, whether it's a couple of slumps on the court, whatever the case is, we adapt really well and we don't stay down for too long,” Curry said. The Rockets, who won 65 games a season ago, are perhaps the most realistic challenger to the Warriors out West. But it's quite possible that Houston is weaker than it was in 2017-18. To understand how high the Warriors are sitting on the throne, you must survey what they’ve left behind. Just look at how the biggest threats in the West have either hit dead ends or maxed themselves out trying to chase the Warriors since 2014. Memphis Grizzlies: At one point, they were considered the toughest matchup for the Warriors because they were polar opposite in style. Half-court and methodical, the Grizzlies took a switchblade to the basketball, slowing the tempo. And they exploited Golden State’s lone weaknesses: Interior size and overall strength. They physically beat up the Warriors in the paint (Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol) and on the perimeter (Tony Allen). Additionally, Mike Conley was at times a handful at point guard at a time when Curry was winning MVP awards. But health and age wore the Grizzlies down and eventually forced them into a current reinvention that likely won’t reap benefits until after the Warriors are finished. Oklahoma City Thunder: As one of only two West teams (Houston being the other) to force the Warriors into a seventh game, OKC was prime for a takeover in 2016. That season, OKC eliminated a 67-win San Antonio Spurs team in the West semfinals. Durant and Russell Westbrook were healthy, humming and helping the Thunder to a 3-1 lead in the West finals. That, however, was their apex, and the costly collapse was heightened by the “Klay Game” (41 points in Game 6). Imagine, if not for a fateful turn of events -- Klay’s 3-point rampage, KD’s second-half Game 7 vapor and the Warriors losing the 2016 Finals to Cleveland -- maybe Durant sticks around in OKC. At any rate, the post-2016 West finals reconstruction being done by the Thunder (Exhibit A: The short-lived Carmelo Anthony experience) is falling short so far. Portland Trail Blazers: They were never seriously considered a thorn to the Warriors, and still aren’t. It’s just that they played themselves. They were fooled by the events in 2016, when they beat the injury-hampered Clippers in the first round. They were then somewhat competitive against the Warriors in the West semifinals (winning one game by 12, losing another in OT and the elimination game by just four). Flushed with false hope, that summer the Blazers handed out rich extensions to rotational players and, unfortunately, locked themselves into a team that hasn’t won a playoff game since. San Antonio Spurs: Like the Grizzlies, the Spurs caused trouble for the Warriors because of their disciplined style that put the brakes on the pace. San Antonio ruled the West just prior to the Warriors’ run and the proud franchise wasn’t willing to relinquish its hold so easily, causing the Warriors to shiver by winning the regular season matchup from 2014-16. Still, like Memphis, the Spurs turned gray almost overnight. Tim Duncan retired, Tony Parker lost some zip and then, of course, came the sneaky Zaza Pachulia foot plant that KO’d Kawhi Leonard in the first game of their 2017 series. It hasn’t been the same for the Spurs, who shipped off the disgruntled Leonard this summer. Houston Rockets: While the Warriors were able to build around Curry to create a dynasty, the Rockets are in their third attempt to do likewise with James Harden. The Dwight Howard experiment was an exploding cigar, and then the strategy of turning Harden into a point guard failed to draw blood. Chris Paul arrived last season and the best record in the West followed, but Paul has always limped at the wrong time. True to form, his body failed him in the conference finals, just when the Rockets were up 3-2 on the Warriors and primed to issue a stunning statement. The conference-wide process of teams searching for the formula to bring an end to this “Golden” era has taken on an interesting twist. Except for the Rockets, who shuffled their deck slightly this summer, other West contenders are on a semi-defeatist two-year plan. As in: We’re not ready now, but look out in a coupla years! LeBron James joined the Lakers this summer, but it’s hard to take them seriously when LeBron himself says his new team isn’t breathing the same air as the defending champs. His supporting cast is a mix of pups with no playoff experience and vets who’ve seen better days. It’s foolhardy to doubt the potential of any team with LeBron — eight straight trips to the championship round is no joke, even if it came through the East. But they’ll stand a better chance next season, especially if they’re bringing Kawhi or Jimmy Butler by then. There’s also the Utah Jazz, a Spurs-like operation led by a pair of Spurs alums in GM Dennis Lindsey and coach Quin Snyder. Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell is a star in the making, but you need more than one of those to match Golden State. Perhaps in time, Mitchell will get a shotgun rider, but Utah is a tough sell for A-list free agents. Houston stands out from the pack with Harden, Paul and center Clint Capela, who gave the Warriors fits last spring. They’re still an attractive, turnkey team. Adding Anthony provides scoring, but does he impact a potential West finals rematch in 2019? With Trevor Ariza and Luc Mbah a Moute gone, where is the perimeter defense coming from? Is it possible that Houston, with Paul aging, had its best chance last spring and didn’t cash in? It’s also possible the Warriors will do everyone in the West a favor and destroy themselves in the very near future. Durant can become a free agent next summer. Thompson’s contract is up, too, although he’s been very clear about his preference to stay even if that means making below market value. “What’s happening right now is going to be really tough to replicate for anybody,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “You have the proverbial window, however you want to put it. We have an incredible opportunity that’s just not always going to be here. We want to take full advantage not only from a success standpoint but from an enjoyment standpoint. “We’re well aware that it’s not going to last forever.” But that’s getting ahead of the story here, which is whether the Warriors will fall shy of The Finals for the first time since 2014. A three-time champion is bringing everyone back and will add a bonus whenever the healing Cousins returns. Basketball can sometimes be a funny game and anything can happen to throw this scenario for a loop. Until then, however, it's hard to imagine anything derailing another season of Warriors dominance. Veteran NBA writer Shaun Powell has worked for newspapers and other publications for more than 25 years. You can e-mail him here or follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 16th, 2018

Ateneo stays hot, drubs La Salle for 5th straight win

Ateneo made a mincemeat of De La Salle to draw first blood in the renewal of their famed rivalr, and cap Saturday’s UAAP action at the MOA Arena. Source link link: Ateneo stays hot, drubs La Salle for 5th straight win.....»»

Category: newsSource:  manilainformerRelated NewsOct 6th, 2018

Ateneo stays hot, drubs La Salle for 5th straight win

Ateneo made a mincemeat of De La Salle to draw first blood in the renewal of their famed rivalr, and cap Saturday's UAAP action at the MOA Arena......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 6th, 2018

PVL: Lady Maroons shock Lady Tams, near title conquest

Championship newbie University of the Philippines Lady Maroons showed the kind of composure and grit of a seasoned team. The Lady Maroons shocked a more experienced Far Eastern University side in a come-from-behind 14-25, 22-25, 26-24, 25-18, 15-5, win Sunday to draw first blood in the best-of-three Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Collegiate Conference Finals series at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. UP, which is on its first major tournament championship stint in decades, can close the series in Game 2 on Wednesday. “That was very, very close, again I just told them that we needed two things. One the pass, and, second less pressure on ourselves,” said UP coach Godfrey Okumu, who is looking to steer the Lady Maroons to their first major title since ruling the UAAP in 1982.   “That’s what made the big change and then also I talked to Ayel (Estranero) and I was able to tell her to play smart as you can see we started running, by running you were able to split the blocks. It was a little too late but at least it gave us the three sets,” added the Kenyan mentor. Isa Molde finished with 16 points while sophomore Roselyn Rosier played like a veteran with 15 markers highlighted by 13 attacks and added 14 digs for the Lady Maroons. Marian Buitre hammered 13 of her 14 points on attacks while Aie Gannaban scored 11 for UP.   The Lady Maroons turned the tables around with a huge third and fourth set win. With momentum on their side, UP put chills on the UAAP Season 80 runner-up by racing to an 8-3 lead and never looked back. FEU lost an important piece at the middle in Celine Domingo early in the fifth set to a right knee injury and the Diliman-based squad capitalized. Heather Guino-o posted 17 points off 11 attacks and six aces while Domingo chipped in nine kills, four aces and three kill blocks for 16 markers for the Lady Tams, who gave away 35 points off errors.  Rookie Lycha Ebon logged in 14 points while Jerrili Malabanan had 12 for FEU, which finished second last year behind National University.   ---   Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 9th, 2018

Kings draw first blood

Brownlee erupts Game Tomorrow: (Smart Araneta Coliseum) 6:30 pm – Ginebra vs San Miguel   Ginebra unleashed a strong start and an even stronger finish to crush San Miguel Beer, 127-99, in Game 1 of their Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner’s Cup best-of-seven finals series last night at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. Import Justin Brownlee caught […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJul 27th, 2018

Cargo Movers draw first blood in Invitational Finals

F2 Logistics showed nerves of steel in the cliffhanger fifth set to outlast archrival Petron, 18-25, 25-23, 20-25, 29-27, 16-14, Thursday in Game 1 of the best-of-three Philippine Superliga Invitational Conference Finals at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. Majoy Baron delivered the crushing blows to seal the Cargo Movers’ victory that pushed them closer to their third title. With the Blaze Spikers threatening to steal the match after erasing a 14-12 deficit in a thrilling rally to force a deuce, Baron stepped up and played the hero’s role with a crucial running attack to give the lead back to F2 Logistics. Baron then buried the dagger to the hearts of Petron and its faithful that trooped the arena with a service winner that went past Blaze Spikers Aiza Maizo-Pontillas and libero Buding Duremdes. Baron finished with 15 points highlighted by four blocks including the denial against Petron’s fireball Sisi Rondina in the extended fourth set that forced the decider. The UAAP Season 79 MVP had eight attacks and three aces. “Well ah, sabi ko nga sa inyo, ‘yung team ng Petron mahirap mahanapan ng butas kasi madalang ‘yung unforced errors hindi basta-basta dumadating. Unlike noong mga first set namin and third set sobrang ang daming unforced errors lalo na ‘yung service and isang naging factor siguro medyo nahirapan kaming pumasa noong first set and third set,” said F2 Logistics coach Ramil de Jesus, who rued his squad’s 39 errors. Ara Galang led F2 Logistics’ offense with 18 points built on 13 attacks while Aby Marano scored nine of her 10 points on kills for the Cargo Movers, who are looking to end the series on Saturday at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.    F2 Logistics took control of the fifth set after rallying from a 7-6 deficit to take a 10-7 lead. The Cargo Movers moved at match point, 14-12, only to see Petron tie it after Desiree Cheng’s service error and a kill block by Blaze Spiker setter Rhea Dimaculangan. Then, Baron took over. Mika Reyes and Bernadeth Pons posted 14 points each, Maizo-Pontillas had 13 while Rondina and Ces Molina got 12 apiece for Petron, who gave away 12 points to the Cargo Movers from the service line.           --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 26th, 2018

San Miguel exacts revenge on Alaska to take Game 1 of semis clash

MANILA, Philippines – San Miguel banked on a balanced scoring attack to frustrate Alaska, 92-79, and draw first blood in their best-of-5 semifinals duel in the 2018 PBA Commissioner's Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena on Saturday, July 14.  June Mar Fajardo finished with 17 points, 9 rebounds and ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsJul 14th, 2018

PVL: Cool Smashers near breakthrough title

Creamline bounced back from a second set meltdown before dismantling PayMaya, 25-21, 22-25, 25-20, 25-19, Sunday to draw first blood in the Premier Volleyball League Season 2 Reinforced Conference best-of-three Finals at the MOA Arena. The Cool Smashers moved a win away from bagging their breakthrough title after a couple of third place finishes last year. Creamline ace hitter Alyssa Valdez and Thai import Kuttika Kaewpin led the way for the Tai Bundit-mentored squad.   Game 2 is on Wednesday.     (To be updated) ---     Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 8th, 2018

Cabuyao, RTU draw first blood in U19 men’s softball tournament

CABUYAO CITY and Rizal Technological University (RTU) dominated their rivals at the start of the National 19 and Under Men’s Softball Championship at the Sto. Niño Softball Field in Marikina City. RTU outclassed Binangonan, 18-3, while Cabuyao City defeated La Salle Antipolo, 13-5, on the first day of the tournament presented by Cebuana Lhuillier and […] The post Cabuyao, RTU draw first blood in U19 men’s softball tournament appeared first on BusinessWorld......»»

Category: financeSource:  bworldonlineRelated NewsMay 1st, 2018

Harden drops 41 points as Rockets draw first blood vs Jazz

James Harden scored 41 points and the Houston Rockets raced out to a huge lead and sailed to a 110-96 win over the Jazz in Game One of the Western Conference semifinals.....»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsApr 30th, 2018

UAAP FINALS: Hindi madaling kalaban ang FEU –- De Jesus

Two-time defending champion De La Salle University swept past Far Eastern University on Saturday to draw first blood in the UAAP Season 80 women’s volleyball Finals best-of-three series. But it was a deceiving result as the Lady Spikers needed to hang tough in the closing stretch of each set to carve out a 29-27, 25-21, 25-22, win. The Lady Tamaraws gave the Taft-based squad one hell of a fight.   “Well, oo, kasi alam naman natin na, sabi ko nga kanina, noong eliminations, talagang hindi madaling kalaban para sa amin ang FEU,” said DLSU coach Ramil de Jesus, who is looking to steer the Taft-based squad to its 11th title and third grand slam.    The mentor, who nine years ago dethroned the Lady Tams in three games, also pointed out that FEU has a full arsenal of versatile hitters who could defend both at the net and on the floor. “Sila kasi 'yung team na talagang marami ding kayang paikutin na tao eh. So tulad kanina, ginamit nila 'yun. So malaking bagay para sa team nila 'yun,” said De Jesus . The DLSU coach also praised FEU’s heady setter Kyle Negrito for distributing the ball well and keeping his wards guessing on who to defend.   “Kaya nahihirapan din kami dahil magaling din 'yung setter,” he added. “Halos wala kang makitang weak point sa rotation kasi lahat nakaka-block.” The Lady Spikers had to rely on their championship experience and composure in each of the sets just to stave off the rampaging and feisty Lady Tams. Now with three days of preparation, De Jesus is looking to make the necessary adjustments to finish off FEU in Game 2. “Well pipilitin namin na makuha 'yung Game 2, kasi mahirap na pag umabot pa ng Game 3,” he said. “And then kung ano man ang naging performance ng FEU today, pag-aaralan namin kung paano pa namin sila mako-control. Hopefully matapos sa Wednesday.”     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsApr 28th, 2018

Fiery Lady Spikers draw first blood

LA SALLE used its championship pedigree to the hilt, as the Lady Spikers inched closer to claiming a three-peat with a 29-27, 25-21, 25-22 conquest of Far Eastern University in the UAAP women’s volleyball tournament last night before 14,293 fans at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. Determined to end their final….....»»

Category: newsSource:  journalRelated NewsApr 28th, 2018

Blaze Spikers draw first blood in semis

Games tomorrow (Filoil Flying V Centre) 4:15 p.m. -- F2 Logistics vs. Foton 7 p.m. -- Petron vs. Cocolife KATHERINE Bell made a strong first impression in powering Petron to a 25-18, 23-25, 25-16, 25-23 victory over Cocolife in Game 1 of their Chooks to Go-Philippine Superliga (PSL) Grand Prix….....»»

Category: newsSource:  journalRelated NewsApr 24th, 2018

Brownlee’s 46 propels Alab Pilipinas to 1-0 lead in ABL Finals

STA. ROSA --- Justin Brownlee carried San Miguel Alab Pilipinas to a thrilling 143-130 overtime victory over Mono Vampire to draw first blood in the best-of-five 2018 ASEAN Basketball League Finals Sunday at Sta. Rosa Multipurpose Complex here. The do-it-all forward set the new ABL Finals record with his 46 points, 10 of which came in the extra period where Alab Pilipinas blew the game wide open after rallying back late in regulation. With the home team staring at a 120-116 deficit in the last 19.3 seconds of the fourt, Brownlee showed his never say die spirit, first drilling a trey to cut the deficit to one with 15.1 on the clock. His foul led to a Michael Singletary split ...Keep on reading: Brownlee’s 46 propels Alab Pilipinas to 1-0 lead in ABL Finals.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 22nd, 2018

Bantayan, Alcoy Draw First Blood in Gov’s Cup Hoop Openers

The squads of Bantayan and Alcoy towns embarked on their title bids on a bright note after carving out separate victories in the opening day of the 2nd Governor’s Cup Inter-Cities/Municipalities Basketball Tournament on Sunday at the New Cebu Coliseum in Cebu City. First, Bantayan rode on the game-long brilliance of Romeo Sumbi to sink […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  metrocebuRelated NewsApr 17th, 2018

Green Archers United-Iloilo shock Kaya FC in Youth Football League

THE Green Archers United-Iloilo Team B surprised Kaya FC during their first encounter in the Youth Football League (YFL) U15, 3-1, at the Alabang Country Club football ground, Apr. 8, 2018. The undersized Ilonggo booters used their speed against taller opponents and EVEN managed to draw first blood courtesy of James Tuazon. Tuazon, a pride […] The post Green Archers United-Iloilo shock Kaya FC in Youth Football League appeared first on The Daily Guardian......»»

Category: newsSource:  thedailyguardianRelated NewsApr 9th, 2018

HISTORY! Azkals beat Tajikistan to enter AFC Asian Cup

The Philippine Azkals made history Thursday night at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium after beating Tajikistan, 2-1, to clinch their spot in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.  The Azkals fell behind midway through the second half after Kevin Ingreso committed a foul inside the box to award the visiting Tajikistan side a penalty, which Nazarov Akhtam drilled in the 64th minute.  GOAL TAJIKISTAN! Nazarov Akhtam sinks the penalty over Neil Etheridge in the 64th minute to draw first blood for the Tajiks! LIVE NOW! 📺 Liga 86 & Liga HD 183#AFCQ2019 pic.twitter.com/Ncu4hUitVB — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) March 27, 2018 Ingreso made up for his error moments later as he helped the Azkals pull even, scoring on a header off an Iain Ramsay cross in the 73rd minute.  GOAL AZKALS! Kevin Ingreso scores a header off a cross from Iain Ramsay! We're all tied up! LIVE NOW! 📺 Liga 86 & Liga HD 183#AFCQ2019 pic.twitter.com/i8J2GDoJ9Y — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) March 27, 2018 Team captain Phil Younghusband sealed the Azkals win late in regulation, sinking a penalty of his own in the 90th minute after Tajikistan was called for a handball inside the penalty box.  It was Younghusband's 50th international goal.  GOAL AZKALS! Phil Younghusband's 50th international goal virtually sends the @TheAzkalsPH to the #AFCQ2019! LIVE NOW! 📺 Liga 86 & Liga HD 183 pic.twitter.com/BNN86It1yF — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) March 27, 2018 Things got chippy near the end of the match when a bit of phyiscality ensued and Tajikistan's Dzhalilov Iskandar geta booked for a red card.  The match between the Azkals and Tajikistan has gone sour, as they go into some extra-curricular activity! Iskandar gets the red card. #AFCQ2019 pic.twitter.com/iAemusshHM — ABS-CBN Sports (@abscbnsports) March 27, 2018 In the end, it was only the final score line that mattered, as the Azkals held on to the 2-1 victory, clinching arguably their biggest win in team history. "It was an emotional game. It's a difficult game when you know you don't need to win the game. We were very cautious, as cautious as possible," Younghusband said after the match. "They had to win the game. But when they scored their first goal, I think that spurred us to play our best football because we knew we needed to attack." "It showed the spirit of the Filipino people, the fighting spirit. Even when we’re down, we can bounce back and I think we showed and typified it today." Younghusband added.  With the win, the Azkals finish on top of Group F with 12 points off three wins and three draws.  More importantly, the first-place finish gives the Azkals their first trip to the AFC Asian Cup, which kicks off on January 5, 2019 in the United Arab Emirates. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 27th, 2018

San Miguel topples Ginebra, takes Game 1 of semis bout

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – The San Miguel Beermen demolished Barangay Ginebra, 102-90, to draw first blood in their best-of-7 semifinals series of the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup at the Araneta Coliseum, Friday, March 9.  Arwind Santos scored 23 points, all coming in the first 3 periods, to go with 8 ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsMar 9th, 2018

Nlex takes opener

Games today (Mall of Asia Arena) 4:30 p.m. -- San Miguel vs. Talk N Text 7 p.m. -- Magnolia vs. Globalport NLEX relied on the hot shooting hands of its key players in the payoff period to pull off a stunning 105-99 victory over Alaska and draw first blood in….....»»

Category: newsSource:  journalRelated NewsMar 5th, 2018

NLEX clinches first playoff win, downs Alaska in nip-and-tuck battle

MANILA, Philippines – Kiefer Ravena poured in 25 points and 8 assists to help the NLEX Road Warriors draw first blood in their best-of-3 quarterfinals series against the Alaska Aces, 105-99, in the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena Monday, March 5.  NLEX, aside from inching ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsMar 5th, 2018