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Coach E to hold 3rd semester classes starting today

Coach E to hold 3rd semester classes starting today.....»»

Category: sportsSource: thestandard thestandardJan 12th, 2017

Wesley Bryan, Cody Gribble share lead at Honda

DOUG FERGUSON, AP Golf Writer   PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — One reason Martin Kaymer enjoys the Honda Classic is because he doesn't feel as though he has to make a bunch of birdies. On such a serene Thursday at PGA National, that was required to keep pace. A pair of PGA Tour rookies who last played this course at Q-school for the Web.com Tour, Cody Gribble and Wesley Bryan, each opened with a 6-under 64 in the morning and it stood the rest of the day. The wind never really materialized. The greens remained soft from a big rain the day before. More than half of the field was at par or better. Kaymer, a two-time major champion from Germany playing on a sponsor exemption, chipped in from behind the 17th green for birdie and closed with a two-putt birdie from 40 feet for a 65. He was one shot behind, along with Anirban Lahiri of India. 'I felt very calm over the ball,' Kaymer said. 'I enjoy the golf course. When you stand on the first tee, you don't feel like you need to make five or six birdies. It's a ball-striking golf course, but even level par or 1-over par is a very good round. 'It was very soft and there was not much wind,' he said. 'Once you miss the fairway, it was actually OK from the rough because the greens are soft. I've not played the golf course in easier conditions.' Rickie Fowler and Ian Poulter found it the same way. They were part of a large group at 66. Sergio Garcia was headed in that direction until he pulled his tee shot left on the par-3 fifth hole and made double bogey, added a pair of other bogeys and recovered with a birdie on his final hole for a 68. He was in the group with defending champion Adam Scott. 'If the weather stays good and it's able to dry out, I don't see the golf course getting any easier,' Fowler said. It was an important start for Poulter, who is playing on a medical extension from a foot injury last year and has only six PGA Tour events left to earn either $220,301 or 154 FedEx Cup points to retain his full status. 'I'm on borrowed time,' said Poulter, who has slipped to No. 206 in the world. 'A win would be nice. I have to think that I've got a chance, I really do. The situation I'm in, I have to be aggressive, but I've got to be careful. I can't make many mistakes.' Bryan is coming off his best tournament, a tie for fourth at Riviera in which he got within two shots of Dustin Johnson toward the end of the third round. It took him awhile to get going in warm, calm weather, and he finished with a 30 on the front nine. Gribble already has won this season at the Sanderson Farms Championship last fall while the top players were in Shanghai. He missed four straight cuts on the West Coast and finally got his swing back to where he wants it. Along with birdies on three of the par 3s, he hit all 18 greens in regulation. Bryan, still more known for the trick-shot videos he makes with his brother, can feel his confidence starting to grow. And it helped to be on familiar turf. 'I think the comfort out here this week ... yeah, I got into some pretty good form, but out here on the golf course, I got through Q-school just about 14 months ago, and it's a place that I'm comfortable at and a golf course I know,' he said. He picked up a rare birdie on the sixth hole, one of two that have been converted from par 5s to par 4s for the Honda Classic, followed that with a 12-foot par save and then a 10-foot birdie on No. 8 to join Gribble in the lead. Gribble's PGA Tour journey started a year earlier than Bryan's. He tied for eighth at Q-school in December 2014 to get onto the Web.com Tour. He did well enough in the final event to earn his card, and a month later he was a PGA Tour winner. 'This is one of the tournaments I like to play,' Gribble said. 'I played it well in Q-school a couple years ago. I've got some good memories.' There weren't a lot of good memories over the last month, missing the cut in three straight events starting with the Phoenix Open. But the Texan has been grinding away with his coach the last few weeks and it's starting to take hold. 'We both know exactly how we want the ball to come out. We want less curve. I tend to draw it too much,' Gribble said. 'I know we wanted more a cut swing, but kind of finally ... it's hard to explain. It clicked today, but it could be lost again tomorrow. You never know. It was a great start, and hopefully I can build on it.' It helped to have a birdie putt on every hole. His lone bogey was a long three-putt on the 16th hole. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 24th, 2017

Blazers beat Nuggets to take one-game lead for 8th seed

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- Jusuf Nurkic had a career-high 33 points with 16 rebounds against his former team, CJ McCollum had 39 points and the Portland Trail Blazers beat the Denver Nuggets 122-113 on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time) to take hold of the eighth seed in the Western Conference. Portland leads Denver by a game for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference. The Blazers also clinched the season-series tiebreaker with the Nuggets, giving them an upper hand with eight games to play. Jameer Nelson led Denver with 23 points. The Blazers got Nurkic involved early against his former team. On Portland's first possession, Nurkic scored on a designed post-up play against Nikola Jokic, who took Nurkic's starting spot in Denver. After another first-quarter basket, Nurkic called on the crowd to pick up the noise, which was a theme for him throughout the night, even while on the bench. When Nurkic left the game late in the third quarter, he did so to a standing ovation. It wouldn't be his last of the night, as Blazers coach Terry Stotts pulled Nurkic for a curtain call with 19 seconds left. Nurkic spoke to the crowd after the game, even taking a shot at his former team. 'I wish those guys a happy summer,' Nurkic said. A 24-second violation by Denver at the 2:28 mark of the third got the home crowd into it even more, as Portland rode the momentum and improved defense to a 10-point lead after three quarters. With 7:21 left in the fourth, McCollum called the crowd to action again after another three-pointer to give Portland a 107-96 lead. The game featured seven lead changes and 14 ties before Portland pulled away. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Nuggets: /strong> /em> Despite the playoff implications, coach Mike Malone stayed away from calling Tuesday's (Wednesday, PHL time) game a 'must-win.' 'Not one time has anyone on this staff said to our players, `This is a must-win,' Malone said prior to the game. 'Because if we do that and lose this game for some reason, then our players say the season is over, we failed.' em> strong>Blazers: /strong> /em> The arrival of Nurkic from Denver has coincided with Portland's longest stretch of winning basketball, going 12-7 since his arrival. Malone didn't think much had changed with Nurkic, though. 'I haven't seen anything different,' Malone said. 'He started 25 games for us and we looked to post him up at times on the left block. He's a more than capable passer. He's a guy that can take the ball to the basket at times. We have our starting center in Nikola Jokic. [Nurkic has] come here and given them a boost, I'm happy for him. He's a good kid.' strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Nuggets: /strong> /em> Denver continues its five-game road trip in Charlotte on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). em> strong>Blazers: /strong> /em>The Blazers host James Harden and Houston on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated News3 hr. 57 min. ago

Suspended Noah: Using supplement to aid injuries 'backfired'

em>By Brian Mahoney, Associated Press /em> GREENBURGH, N.Y. (AP) — Joakim Noah was seeking help to overcome injuries that wrecked his first season in New York and turned to an over-the-counter supplement. That decision 'backfired,' Noah said Tuesday. It led to a 20-game suspension for violating the NBA's anti-drug policy, preventing Noah from ending a disappointing year on a positive note. 'This was a tough moment, but I'm going to learn from it,' Noah said. 'I tried to take a supplement to help me with everything I've gone through. I've gone through a lot of injuries, and I tried to take something to help me and it backfired.' Noah returned to practice Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time) following Feb. 27 (Feb. 28, PHL time) surgery to remove a loose body from his left knee. The knee injury came after a hamstring injury he was trying to recover from around the All-Star break. All told, he managed just 46 games in the first season of a four-year, $72 million contract he signed last summer. 'I wanted to do something to help myself, help my body and like I said it backfired on me,' Noah said. 'I tried to take the right measures when I was taking the supplements and it wasn't enough.' The league cited Noah for Selective Androgen Receptor Modulator LGD-4033. The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency has said that the substance, known as SARMs, has 'similar properties to anabolic agents, but ... the lack of steroid-related side effects.' Noah was aware of the warnings players get when it comes to outside supplements, but may have desperate for some relief in the midst of a second straight injury-plagued season. He was limited to 29 games in his final season in Chicago because of a left shoulder injury that required surgery. 'So I know it didn't come from a bad place,' Noah said, adding that he thought 20 games was severe but 'it is what it is and I've got to bounce back.' He apologized to teammates and the organization, saying he let a lot of people down. 'You can't do anything about it now. We're just glad to see him back on the court today, doing some things,' coach Jeff Hornacek said. 'We'll miss him the rest of the year and the beginning of next year. But he'll be ready to go next year.' Noah was limited to 5.0 points a game and wasn't able to be the defensive anchor the team hoped. He may not even regain his starting spot next season, with rookie Willy Hernangomez playing well recently. Noah and the Knicks hope he can begin serving the suspension as early as their game Wednesday against Miami so he can chop off the first eight games this season. 'It's a tough lesson to learn, but everything in life has its purpose,' Noah said. 'I know that right now it's a tough situation to be in not being there with my teammates out there on the court. But I'm going to take this suspension like a man and move on.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated News9 hr. 0 min. ago

Q&A: NBA pioneer Wayne Embry

By Steve Aschburner, NBA.com Wayne Embry is closing in on 60 years in the NBA in one capacity or another. And if you hear him tell it, he’s been half-a-Forrest Gump, working without a plan and landing wherever the basketball winds have taken him. But that does not do the man or his career justice. “You can say Wayne’s been persistent,” Oscar Robertson said about his friend, fellow Hall of Famer and former roommate with the Cincinnati Royals. “A lot of things were not that easy for him on his way to where he is today. There was not a plan for a lot of African-Americans in those days, to be honest. People think because they see him now, ‘Everything was so wonderful.’ But he persevered. And I’m happy for him for that.” Wayne Richard Embry, who turns 80 on Sunday (Monday, PHL time), has been a player, a scout, a team executive and a pebble-grained consigliere for so long, Bill Russell only had one ring when he arrived. Embry reached the NBA in 1958, the 22nd pick in the same draft that yielded Elgin Baylor, Hal Greer and Guy Rodgers. A native of Springfield, Ohio, and the only black student at his Tecumseh High in New Carlisle, Embry played at Miami (Ohio) before becoming a five-time NBA All-Star. He averaged 14.1 points and 10.4 rebounds for Cincinnati and, at 6’8” and 240 pounds, earned his memorable nickname (“The Wall”) with bone-jarring picks and box-outs. Embry was traded in 1966 to Boston, where he spent two seasons as a backup to Russell, earning a championship ring in 1968. Then it was on to Milwaukee via the expansion draft, with the Bucks jacking the 31-year-old Embry’s minutes from 13.9 to 30.2 in the season before they landed Lew Alcindor, a.k.a. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Soon after Embry retired as a player, Bucks owner Wes Pavalon sought him out to be “assistant to the president,” Ray Patterson. When Patterson moved on to Houston in 1972, Pavalon promoted Embry, making him the first black general manager in major American professional sports. Embry helped convince Robertson to accept his trade to Milwaukee for the 1970-71 season, the trigger of the Bucks’ NBA championship that season. He helped rebuild the team, after Abdul-Jabbar demanded his exit from the gritty Midwestern city, into an under-appreciated contender into the 1980s. Then it was on to Cleveland, where Embry became the NBA’s first black team president. The Cavaliers thrived on his watch, only to be blocked by Detroit and Chicago much as Boston and Philadelphia had been the Bucks’ obstacles. At age 67, Embry accepted a role as senior basketball adviser with the Toronto Raptors, a job at which he continues to work nearly 13 years later. Toronto has averaged 50 victories over the past four seasons, with Embry helicoptering in six or seven times each season and otherwise catching their games on League Pass from his Scottsdale, Ariz., home, where he lives with Terri, his wife of 57 years. Robertson, by comparison, was only Embry’s roommate for six seasons during their travels with the Royals. “He was all right,” Robertson recalled Friday. “He slept a lot and I didn’t.” A politics junkie and a history buff, Embry exercises daily and mostly battles some sinus issues after shedding considerable weight recently. Soft-spoken but sharp as ever, he spoke at length with NBA.com on the same day that, coincidentally, former Chicago Bulls GM Jerry Krause died at age 77. Here is an edited version of that conversation: strong>NBA.com: /strong> What do you remember about Jerry Krause? strong>Wayne Embry: /strong>He was a hard worker. Whether it be his work in the NBA or his work in baseball. Very much attended to detail, too. He was, I would think for his time, innovative in his approach, looking for things other people may not have thought to look for. Players’ extended family, that sort of thing. He was really dedicated to what he did. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Was it possible to have a good working relationship with him as a rival? strong>WE: /strong> He didn’t want to reveal any information to anybody. If there was a group of guys out on the road scouting, he would seem aloof sometimes. He didn’t want to give up any secrets or anything that he assumed the other guy didn’t know. He’d be very non-communicative. [chuckles] strong>NBA.com: /strong>Even Jerry West, “The Logo,” doesn’t have 60 years in the NBA. You got here a couple seasons before him or Oscar. strong>WE: /strong> I’ve been blessed to be involved in something like this that I have a great passion for. It’s been good for me, and to be able to still be involved at my age ... I just feel blessed. strong>NBA.com: /strong> You have to feel proud not only to be the first black GM in pro sports but to have achieved that way back in 1972. Did you have a sense of being a pioneer back then? strong>WE: /strong>At the time, it was a complete shock. I thought I’d be lucky to be assistant to Ray Patterson, who had done a tremendous job building the championship team. I came there in late ’70 and in August of ’72 I get a call from Wes Pavalon. He and two of his board members were in his office. He just looked at me and said, “You’re the new general manager of the Milwaukee Bucks.” It didn’t register. I was, what, 34, 35 at the time? There never had been any [black GMs]. I just told them I’d do the best I could in whatever capacity I was in. But to be named the man in charge came as a complete shock. strong>NBA.com: /strong> Pavalon was a pretty progressive guy, whose friends included tennis great Arthur Ashe and “Roots” author Alex Haley. Did he tell you later why he chose you for such a barrier-breaking role? strong>WE: /strong> No, not really. But I think that it had a lot to do with the fact I was with the inaugural team and was captain of that team. They drafted me at my age because they wanted leadership. And [coach] Larry Costello, whom I had gotten to know, respected my approach to the game and thought I’d be good for their young team. strong>NBA.com: /strong>You played only one season with the Bucks, retiring at 31. Couldn’t you have come back for another season as a mentor to Kareem? strong>WE: /strong> I probably could have. But my knees already were aching and my back got worse. It got very difficult to get up in the morning to go to practice. I only knew how to play the game one way, and that was all out. I said, “No, I can’t do it anymore.” strong>NBA.com: /strong> When Pavalon brought you back to Milwaukee – you briefly were a city recreation director in the Boston area – he was hoping to swing a deal for Oscar, right? strong>WE: /strong> Wes said “What d’ya think?” I said, “That would be an instant championship, if you got him with Kareem.” I think Oscar had a no-trade contract or approval, and [Pavalon] asked me if I’d pick up the phone and give him a call, and kind of push him our way. I told Oscar I was going back and it’d be great for him to win a championship after all these years. And of course I was interested in pushing it along, if I was going to go back there too. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Oscar understood the value of playing alongside Kareem. strong>WE: /strong> Well, yeah. All those great years he had in Cincinnati but he could never beat Russell and the Celtics. So for him to play with a center who was dominant – I wasn’t quite as dominant a center [laughs] – was a big step toward winning a championship. And it all worked out. strong>NBA.com: /strong> It worked out for you a year later, when Patterson left and Pavalon made you GM. strong>WE: /strong> At that point, I was trying to not screw it up. And I was always afraid that trading Greg Smith screwed it up because we were trying to get bigger at the power forward position. That’s when we brought Curtis Perry in. There were a couple years there where we got beat in the playoffs [by the Lakers and the Warriors], and then we got back to the Finals in ’74. We lost the final game in Milwaukee, which was a heartbreaker. strong>NBA.com: /strong> How cooperative were the league’s other GMs back then? Whether it was due to your race or the fact you were a recently retired player breaking into their ranks, was there any resistance to working with you? strong>WE: /strong> Not at all. They were very receptive and accommodating to me, as far as being a peer. A lot of great friendships evolved out of it. With Pete Newell and Bob Feerick, who was with Golden State at the time. Stu Inman and Jerry Colangelo. I think there was a lot of mutual respect. They helped me grow in the job. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Going about your job day to day, did you feel more eyes on you because you were breaking new ground? strong>WE: /strong>Actually, it didn’t dawn on me right away. I was asked at the time if it was significant, and I said only if it was significant to others. I just felt I had a job to do. I put pressure on myself to do the best I could, prepare myself for it and work harder than everybody else. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Did you like the job right off? strong>WE: /strong>I didn’t really know what it all entailed. It was difficult at first, because I had played with some of the guys I now was managing. As teammates, we had a different type of relationship. Then you had to change that. Instead of hanging out with you, there had to be separation. That was difficult. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Did you have to let Oscar know when he was nearing the end? strong>WE: /strong> That was one of the toughest assignments I had. It was the year of the [New Orleans] expansion draft, but he told us he wasn’t ready to make a decision. The organization certainly didn’t want to put him out in the expansion draft, just out of respect to him. We ended up protecting him. But time passed and ownership decided we had to move on. I had the responsibility of telling Oscar we were moving on, which was tough. strong>NBA.com: /strong> Did it impact your relationship with Oscar, at least temporarily? strong>WE: /strong>It may have. But we worked our way through it. We’re best friends now. strong>NBA.com: /strong>You also had the, er, fun job of dealing with Kareem when he wanted out of Milwaukee. strong>WE: /strong>I think it was the fall of ’74, I got a call that Sam Gilbert – representing Kareem – wanted a meeting. We had no idea what it was for. So Wes and I and Kareem and Sam met at the Sheraton out in Brookfield [western suburb of Milwaukee] and weren’t in the room five minutes when Sam said, “Kareem wants to be traded.” We didn’t want to trade Kareem, obviously, but we knew we were in for a long evening as we tried to hammer this thing out. The reason Kareem gave was, he wanted to go to New York or L.A., larger markets. Actually, Washington was his first choice. But there was that event at his house there...  strong>NBA.com: /strong>That’s right. In January 1973, a house that Abdul-Jabbar owned in D.C. was targeted in a home invasion. [Terrorists murdered several people in an attack on the player’s spiritual teacher Hamaas Abdul Khaalis, a rival of Nation of Islam leader Elijah Muhammad. Abdul-Jabbar was not present at the time.] strong>WE: /strong>That took Washington out, so it got down to the Lakers or the Knicks. We did everything we could do to talk him out of wanting to be traded. But he said, “Nope. If you don’t, I’ll become a free agent or I’ll sign with the ABA.” Of course we didn’t want that to happen. So we decided to keep it quiet. “Let’s not go public until we have a deal.” strong>NBA.com: /strong> You wound up keeping it quiet for most of that ’74-75 season. strong>WE: /strong>New York made their pitch but there was nothing [acceptable] they could do – they wanted to give us aging players and money. Then I got a call from Pete Newell [of the Lakers] who said, “Can we meet in Denver?” We met in Denver and hammered out a trade. strong>NBA.com: /strong> Considering your hand was forced, were you satisfied with the return on that deal? strong>WE: /strong>Yeah, we felt we got a good nucleus. And I told the board that, once it was clear Kareem wanted to be traded, I said, “This may be good for the franchise. We’re going to hold out to get young players who can be part of a solid future.” We got [David] Meyers and Junior Bridgeman as draft picks, and Brian Winters and Elmore Smith as players. Of course there was cash involved – that wasn’t my area – but that was a pretty solid foundation. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Where did your satisfaction come from as a GM, compared to winning games and chasing titles as a player? strong>WE: /strong>Pretty much the same. Our jobs in the front office are to create an environment for the players to succeed. My philosophy was, let the coaches coach and the players play. I always felt it was a players’ game. So let’s do the best we can there. Very seldom did I interfere with a coach coaching. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Well, there was that one time in Cleveland when Lenny Wilkens noticed you coaching up Brad Daugherty... strong>WE: /strong>He said, “I’d appreciate if you’d let us coach the team. I saw you over there talking to Brad and giving him some instructions.” I said, “Well, Lenny, I played the position. I just thought I’d give him a little tip.” He said, “Just pass that on to us and we’ll do it.” I thought about that, and I said, “You know what? You’re absolutely right.” You have to hold your coaches accountable, and if you’re going to do their jobs, you can’t hold them accountable. strong>NBA.com: /strong> With those Milwaukee teams of Marques Johnson, Sidney Moncrief, Bridgeman, Winters and eventually Bob Lanier, do you ever second-guess any moves you made or didn’t make? strong>WE: /strong>No, I think we were the best we could be. I thought Don Nelson did a tremendous job in developing those teams to where we were contenders. I had a great deal of pleasure in watching those teams grow, because it came after I had to tell Larry Costello he no longer would be our coach. And when I told Don Nelson – my roommate in Boston – that he was going to take over, he said “I’m not ready to coach.” I told him, “Nellie, you’re the coach. So let’s go for it.” He grew with the team and became obviously a Hall of Fame coach. That’s the reward, when you make decisions like that and they turn out well. That’s the pleasure I get now in an advisory capacity with Toronto. I tell the team when I speak to them before the season, my greatest joy is seeing others succeed. strong>NBA.com: /strong> How much better prepared were you when, after a year consulting with Indiana, you went to Cleveland as vice president and GM in 1986? strong>WE: /strong> I had learned a lot by then, a lot of valuable experiences. Managing in the ‘70s wasn’t easy for any of us. That was an era of the post-civil rights, Vietnam War protests, and it affected the sports and the country in general. We had the drug culture in the NBA. It was all part of the post-Sixties era. We were confronted with situations we never thought we’d face. It was trying, to say the least. Young people were protesting a lot of issues. We all respected others’ First Amendment rights. But we also had to be protective of the brand. So it was more a matter of how we did it. We had to protect the image of the franchise, but at the same time, we realized, “This is the time we’re living in. How can we affect change?” We had to think about how we expressed ourselves, and dealt with adversity and the various attitudes that prevailed. And still prevail. Quite frankly, I a little concerned about today. strong>NBA.com: /strong> What’s your take now on the social and political issues that have crept – or been invited – into sports. strong>WE: /strong> We’ve got to count on the 80 percent. I use the 80/20 philosophy, and if 80 percent is good and 20 percent is bad, the 80 percent has got to influence what happens with the other 20 percent. I think we still do a lot of good in sports. We can’t let the 20 percent rule. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Was the NBA of its times or ahead of its time in race relations in the ‘60s and ‘70s? strong> WE: /strong> We come from different backgrounds, different points of views. But I think once you’re in the locker room, the whole concept of winning is built on respect. You built a mutual respect in the locker room, you work toward a common goal, and that’s to win. You saw how the Celtics got along internally. Now we’ve got a lot more African-American players ... and that’s a different challenge. Plus the NBA has become global, putting us at the forefront of bringing together different cultures, different ethnic backgrounds to work toward that common goal of winning championships. It’s great to see how we’ve been able to integrate Europeans, Asians, Africans all into the NBA. We’re a model for how it can bring about change and mutual respect, which I think we need more of in the world. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Your teams in Cleveland had players and coaches who had the misfortune of being born into the era of Jordan. strong>WE: /strong>Obviously, you want to win championships. But if you can get to the final four, you’re a real contender. We were able to do that on one occasion. But we had to play against greatness in those other years. We consistently won 50 games or more, but we couldn’t overcome Michael Jordan. I talked to somebody yesterday who brought up “The Shot” again. [Laughs.] I wish they’d let that go. They keep playing that damn thing on television. strong>NBA.com: /strong> How do you feel about one man serving both as chief basketball boss and head coach, like Stan Van Gundy in Detroit or Gregg Popovich in San Antonio? strong>WE: /strong> My philosophy is having two people. But I can’t take issue with what Pop does, because he relies heavily on R.C. [Buford]. As long as someone has a person to rely on, as a check-and-balance, it can work. But I’m really an advocate of [splitting the duties]. strong>NBA.com: /strong>Did you ever want to coach? strong>WE: /strong>No. I wanted to be as far away from the action as possible because I was too fierce a competitor. One of the most regrettable things in my career was when I came on the court in a game in Detroit – I was sitting about 10 rows up – and the Pistons were having their way with our players. That was the late ‘80s or early ‘90s when the Bad Boys were at their best – or worst. The referees weren’t calling it the way I saw it, there was something happening underneath the basket and suddenly I found myself out on the court. I got the call from Rod [Thorn, NBA VP] the next day, saying “We’ve got to fine you $10,000.” I said, “Fine me more.” strong>NBA.com: /strong>I want to ask about your thoughts on the league today, about the way the game is played and the current hot topic of resting players. strong>WE: /strong> I am fearful that the big men are becoming an endangered species because of the emphasis on 3-point shooting. And I was in the room when we adopted the 3-point shot. I voted for it, I agree with it. But I am concerned about the use of these 6-11, 7-footers who we’ve seen over the years – centers don’t dominate anymore. You don’t see the development of the bigs as we once did. They’re used primarily in high pick-and-roll situations and very little in low-post play. I think there’s very much a need for a big, but the push now is for stretch-fours and stretch-fives. I can understand the analytics of it all, because we all can do arithmetic. But playing the game, you take what the defense gives you. There’s got to be a place for bigs – they want to play the game too. strong>NBA.com: /strong>And as far as resting players? strong>WE: /strong> I think that’s contrary to what the game should be about. [Commissioner] Adam Silver and the owners are going to address it, which I commend them for, because they have to address it. strong>NBA.com: /strong> The broadcast partners have wound up with some lousy games because of it. And we’ve heard fans complain when they’ve spent hundreds of dollars, months in advance, and maybe driven for hours to see the stars around whom the NBA markets itself. Do you share those concerns? strong>WE: /strong>Just as important is the whole competitive notion of why we play the game. We can’t compromise competition. If your team is vying for playoff position to get homecourt advantage, you look at the schedule and you think “Cleveland should beat that team” or “Toronto should beat that team.” But when they go in there and their three best players don’t play, that compromises competition. You can talk about being tired, but part of competition is about fatigue. You have to manage off days and manage lifestyle, manage all the things that contribute to fatigue. Physically and mentally. There are a lot of ways they can address it. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 26th, 2017

Nowitzki scores 23, leads Mavericks over Nets 111-104

em>By Michael Scotto, Associated Press /em> NEW YORK (AP) — Dirk Nowitzki kept Dallas ahead with his consistent play, and J.J. Barea put away the Mavericks' win with a burst at the end. Nowitzki had 23 points and nine rebounds, Barea scored 20 and the Mavericks beat the Brooklyn Nets 111-104 Sunday (Monday, PHL time). The Mavericks led 94-92 with more than five minutes left before Barea scored nine straight Dallas points. 'Big shots,' Nowitzki said. 'That's what he does, pick-and-roll. They came off there and he made a couple from mid-range. He kind of iced it for us there and he's made big plays for this franchise for a long time.' Said coach Rick Carlisle: 'That was a key part of the game.' 'I thought Dirk played a great game. His scoring and shooting was tremendous,' he said. Harrison Barnes added 19 points for the Mavericks. After Barea's surge, Barnes' two layups made it 107-101 with 26.5 seconds remaining. Brook Lopez scored 27 points and Spencer Dinwiddie had 18 for the Nets. Randy Foye and Quincy Acy each had 11. Barnes scored 15 points in helping the Mavs take a 57-43 lead at halftime. Lopez scored 12 in the third quarter, and Brooklyn trailed 82-72 heading into the fourth. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Mavericks: /strong> /em> Carlisle discussed Yogi Ferrell's impact since signing with Dallas. 'We were all banged up. We had a lot of guys out. We desperately needed a guy that could play the position and hold the fort. I wasn't sure he was going to be a starter right away, but the way we were structured at the time it seemed like the best way to go. He started the first game, did a lot of good things and had a really terrific first couple of weeks. Now, we're at a point where he's pretty much held that position and he's done a lot of good things.' Ferrell scored eight vs. the Nets. A.J. Hammons and Jarrod Uthoff were inactive. em> strong>Nets: /strong> /em>Coach Kenny Atkinson thinks Rondae Hollis-Jefferson can be a power forward long-term. 'I think four can be his main position. I also think he can play three. Obviously the perimeter shooting has to get better. I think he can play three because he can handle the ball and he can play a little bit of pick-and-roll. He's going to be that hybrid that I think is an important position.' Lopez played in his 550th game, tying Mike Gminski for second place on the franchise's all-time games played list. Archie Goodwin made his Nets debut, becoming the 21st player to suit up for Brooklyn this season. He hit his only triple try and finished with four points. Joe Harris (sprained left shoulder) and Sean Kilpatrick (strained left hamstring). strong>LIN HURT /strong> Brooklyn's Jeremy Lin sprained his right ankle on a drive to the basket and missed the remainder of the game after being subbed out at the 4:35 mark of the first quarter. He had four points. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Mavericks: /strong> /em> Host Golden State on Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time), starting a four-game homestand. em> strong>Nets: /strong> /em>Host Detroit on Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time). Brooklyn remains home for its next two games. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 19th, 2017

FEU-UP clash headlines UAAP football Saturday triple-header

strong>MATCHES on SATURDAY, March 18th. (Rizal Memorial Stadium) /strong> strong>3:00 PM - UP vs. UST (Women's) /strong> strong>5:00 PM - NU vs. Ateneo (Men's) /strong> strong>7:00 PM - FEU vs. UP (Men's) /strong>   It's another must-see matchday in UAAP Season 79 football, as collegiate powerhouses Far Eastern University and University of the Philippines lock horns once again the third game of a Saturday triple-header at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium.  After missing out on the final four last season, the FEU Tamaraws have burst out the gates in Season 79, going unbeaten in the first round and then kicking off the second round with a 2-1 win over National University last week. The Tamaraws are currently in second place in the standings, and are looking to create separation from third-seed UP.  Defending champions UP are also putting together another impressive season as they try to keep the men's football title in their backyard. Also starting the season strong, the Maroons' only loss came against league-leading Ateneo, who they managed to hold to a draw in their second round meeting. A win over FEU will send the Maroons into second place.  In their first round encounter, the Tamaraws and Maroons fought to a physical scoreless draw.  FEU and UP meet at 7:00 PM. In the earlier men's football match, National University looks to get back into the win column as they challenge league-leading Ateneo de Manila University.  After a slow start, the NU Bulldogs were able to get their wits together and go on an impressive three-game winning run to end the first half. Unfortunately for the Sampaloc-based squad, they ran into a rampaging FEU squad to start the second round. With a win today, they regain hold of solo fourth place in the men's standings.  Season 79 has been nothing but spectacular for Ateneo, who are looking to get back into the finals for a second straight year. After running through their first six matches though, the Blue Eagles have slowed down a bit, with two consecutive draws in their last two outings against FEU and UP. Still, this isn't reason to take the Katipunan side lightly.  NU and Ateneo clash at 3:00 PM In the lone women's match of the afternoon, defending champions University of the Philippines try to get their first win of the season when they take on second-seeded University of Santo Tomas.  Coming off a title run, Season 79 has been anything but a dream for the defending queens of UAAP football. Winless in four matches, the only points that the Lady Maroons have gotten are from a draw against also-winless Far Eastern University. With the first round in the books, UP hopes to get back on track in the remaining four games of the season.  On the opposite end of the spectrum, the Lady Tigresses have been having a banner year, with three wins and a loss in four matches played, good enough to finish the first round in second. Striker Charisa Lemoran has been the main woman for the España-squad this season, pacing the Tigresses with six goals this season.  UP and UST battle at 3:00 PM.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 18th, 2017

Pelicans soar, upset Rockets 128-112

em>By Brett Martel, Associated Press /em> NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Solomon Hill scored a career-high 30 points and the New Orleans Pelicans overcame the absence of All-Star DeMarcus Cousins in a 128-112 upset over the Houston Rockets on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). Anthony Davis had 24 points and 15 rebounds for New Orleans, which has won three of four. Jrue Holiday added 19 points despite early foul trouble. James Harden had 41 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists, but that was not enough to prevent Houston's first loss in four games. Lou Williams added 14 points and Montrezl Harrell 13. Cousins was sidelined by left knee and rib soreness. New Orleans is now 2-0 without Cousins and 3-7 when he's played since trading for him Feb. 19 (Feb. 20, PHL time). Pelicans rookie guard Wayne Selden scored 11 points in his third career NBA game. Although Cousins has been productive both scoring and rebounding since his trade to New Orleans, the Pelicans' offensive sets appeared more fluid and balanced without him. New Orleans shot better than 53.3 percent (49-of-92) and led by 23 points early in the fourth quarter. The Rockets briefly pulled within 11 when Harden's 11th assist set up Patrick Beverly's transition layup with 5:27 remaining. But after a Pelicans timeout, Hill hit a triple to set his personal single-game high. Then E'Twaun Moore set up Davis' fast-break dunk to quickly push New Orleans' lead back to 16, and the Rockets never got within single digits down the stretch. Hill had 14 of his points in the opening period, hitting four of his first five three-point attempts. He finished 8-of-13 shooting, hitting 6-of-9 shots from three-point range. Point guard Tim Frazier saw extended early minutes because of Holiday committing two early fouls and responded with 10 points on 4-of-5 shooting in the opening 24 minutes, helping New Orleans build a lead as large as 21 points in the first half. Houston, meanwhile, shot relatively poorly early, hitting only 36.6 percent of its shots in the first half and finishing at 41.6 percent (37-of-89) for the game, including 13-of-40 from deep. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Rockets: /strong> /em>Eric Gordon had 12 points, but only six through three quarters. Ryan Anderson missed 6-of-9 shots and finished with eight points. Houston had won each of the previous two meetings by 22 or more points. Beverly and Anderson both were assessed technical fouls. Beverly disputed a foul called on him when he appeared to block Frazier's driving shot. Anderson appeared frustrated when he went to the floor trying to guard Davis' made layup. From his back, Anderson flipped the dead ball vigorously to official Ken Mauer, drawing his technical. em> strong>Pelicans: /strong> /em>Coach Alvin Gentry said Cousins was day-to-day and would be re-evaluated on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). Gentry added that while neither of Cousins injuries appears serious, it made sense to hold him out while he was dealing with two injuries at once. The Pelicans went with their 24th different starting lineup this season, with Selden starting. Still, they have been much better off, injury-wise, than a season ago, when they used 42 starting lineups. Rookie forward Cheick Diallo was recalled from the Greensboro Swarm of the NBA Development League but did not play. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Rockets: /strong> /em>Visit Denver on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time). em> strong>Pelicans: /strong> /em>Host Minnesota on Sunday night (Monday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 18th, 2017

Doc Volleyball: Unfinished Business

It has been 2 years since I got a call from my former college coach Oliver Almadro inviting me to suit up for the team he was tasked to organize for the 2015 South East Asian Games (SEA Games) in Singapore. Back then, I was already starting my medical practice through a moonlight stint at Boracay Island. I thought I was done with the sport. I had no more volley responsibilities and had no commitments whatsoever. My only allegiance was to my budding practice. It was not an easy invitation for my part as I knew the trade-offs that I would make. Not only will I impair my current earning to settle for a measly compensation, I would also have to put on hold the momentum of my medical profession which admittedly hasn’t taken off yet. I asked Coach O why still ask me when there’s a ton of emerging stars back there at the metro. His explanation was simple. He already had a “dream team” in mind, but despite the many he called, only a few answered. In line with that, given the tight schedule he was tasked by the NSA, it would be logical for him to enlist players he has already worked with. At that time, everyone had high hopes for Philippine Volley. With a new governing body at the helm, it was already a victory for everyone that the country was once again fielding both a men’s and women’s team for the SEA Games after a long hiatus. While both us and our female counterparts fell short in qualifying for podium finishes, our mere re-joining and tallying a couple of wins definitely spelled a sense of hope to a continuously increasing volley community. Were our teams good? No doubt about it. Was it the best the country could have offered? I would have to admit no. As the host country passes the torch to Malaysia and the ceremonies come to a close, we were all in high hopes that in two years perhaps, with continuous training and support, we would make the country proud not just with our mere presence in the tourney but with actual podium finishes and medals around our necks. We packed our bags, flew back to Manila, went on back to our daily lives. Fast forward to 2017 and we are now once again in a familiar scene. Only a few months left before a major tourney and we are yet to field in an actual line-up. Whatever happened to the long term plans of 2015, one can only imagine. This 2017 Malaysia SEA Games should be the fruition of the unfinished business of 2015. A podium finish is expected now and I admit that it’s definitely a tall order given the level of preparation. However, with an ever growing pool of talents, this new selection process can serve as a new ray of hope for the volley community. It is of no doubt that the newly appointed Head Coaches were able to put up a commendable list of national team hopefuls. Looking at the individuals enlisted for both men’s and women’s team, I can already imagine the ideal team set-up. Indeed, the players considered are outstanding individually, but the challenge still remains in synergizing them and working on a system that is internationally competent. strong>Men’s Training Pool: Initial Thoughts /strong> I had the pleasure of playing with or against some of the names included in the men’s training pool. One quick glance at the list and I can easily surmise that head coach Sammy Acaylar is building up a wall. From middles to setters, Acaylar has a pool of tall players at his disposal. I can definitely see the trio of Ran-Ran Abdilla, Mark Alfafara and Howard Mojica gunning from the left pins and the pipe while John Vic De Guzman blasts away from the right pin and back row. Reyson Fuentes and Herschel Ramos will man the wall for net defense while a tall setter in Mark Deximo further fortifies it. While Peter Torres is a shoo-in for another middle position, his bread and butter slide attack might pose some problems in synchronization with De Guzman’s right wing and back row attack. This is due to the fact that if in the first middle position, the slide can be an obstacle to a right back row attack and as a second middle, the slide attack will force the opposite to hit more combination x-plays which are proving to be easily mitigated in the international scene especially against teams with tall pin blockers. It would be definitely be easy for the coaches to come up with a strong team with the men’s pool. Though still short in height by western standards, the size of the potential team would be competent enough at the SEA Games level. That doesn’t mean though that we can still apply the local level of play with heavy reliance on combination x-plays. Based on experience, teams like Thailand and Myanmar are not only tall but also agile and can serve aggressively. Heavy reliance on the local offensive style of combination plays will prove problematic since it is to be expected that passing will not be accurate enough to run such offense consistently. Rather, the team would have better chances scoring in running consistent tempo plays to the pins, pipe or back right in which the timing gap between the quicker and pin hitter are minimized as much as possible. strong>Women’s Training Pool: Initial Thoughts /strong> Looking at the short list for the women’s team, it is of no surprise that head coach Vicente is also building up a vertically competent roster. While Acaylar will have an easy time handpicking the men’s hopefuls, such cannot be said for Vicente. With the continuous emergence of the sport especially in the women’s division, the talent pool of both collegiate and professional players continues to grow. My initial thoughts on a potentially formidable lineup would have Alyssa Valdez, Myla Pablo and Dindin Manabat from the left pins, Jaja Santiago and Aiza Maizo-Pontillas from the right, Aby Marano and Maika Ortiz to add impeccable block timing from the middle, Rhea Dimaculangan and Kim Fajardo orchestrating the play, while Denden Lazaro mans the floor. One crucial factor here is the ability of the outside hitters to hit a pipe and the opposites with the right back row. Much like their male counterparts, the challenge for the women’s team would be on running an offensive system that is internationally competent and updated. While it works here in the local scene, heavy reliance on combination x-plays as the bread and butter offense would also prove problematic since teams like Thailand and Vietnam also have tall players who are much more agile and disciplined in terms of blocking. In line with that, the women’s team cannot just rely on the height in terms of blocking since the top SEA Games teams also run fast tempo plays. Blocking at the SEA games level would entail careful observation of opponent setter biomechanics especially for the Middles since tentative and instinct blocking would not be effective against the likes of Thailand’s Nootsara Tomkom. More than the height, middles will be hard pressed in improving their agility and footwork to ensure that they can easily close the gap while penetrating the arms across the net especially against fast tempo plays not commonly seen in the local setting. strong>Missing in Action /strong> Given the list of considered athletes, we go back to the question – will it be a good team? Definitely! Will it be the best the country can offer though? Well, that is still up for debate. To address the elephant in the room, the most notable exclusions are Marck Espejo and Bryan Bagunas for the men’s team and Jia Morado and Melissa Gohing over at the women’s side. Standing at 6’4” with commendable vertical reach, Bagunas has proven himself to be a force to reckon with at the net be it in offense or defense. Since top teams in the SEA Games have highly threatening opposites like Thailand’s ace, Jirayu Raksakaew, Bagunas’ size and leap would be of benefit for the team. On the other hand, Espejo would be sorely missed for his overall versatility. While it is of no doubt that Espejo has proven himself as the best left pin hitter in UAAP history to date, what makes him stand out is his impeccable work at the back row. Aside from his pipe attacks, Espejo’s passing and digging ability has made him stand out amongst other left pin hitters. His previous SEA Games experience especially in passing Thailand’s aggressive serving could have been a crucial factor for the team to run consistent offense. Despite ending her collegiate career with a gold medal, Melissa Gohing has proven that she can definitely improve more. With back to back championships in the V-League, Gohing has shown tremendous growth in terms of her ball control and placement. Despite facing hard hitters especially with the reinforced conference, she was able to hold her ground and contribute significantly to her team’s defense. That consistency and experience could have been also a much needed boost for the upcoming team. Perhaps the most surprising exclusion that sparked community intrigue would be that of Jia Morado. In the UAAP, Morado has so far been the only setter to date to actually implement an updated style of setting that blends consistency and agility. The manner by which she runs tempo plays to the pins and middles has been a major factor for her team to disrupt the blocking strategies of their opponents. Morado, with her international experience, could definitely be of tremendous help in increasing the agility of our team’s offense. Her fast tempo plays could have been crucial in circumventing the blocks of other countries a preview of which is how her team was able to dismantle the defense of a relatively good blocking team such as UP in their recent encounter.     .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 16th, 2017

Heat win again, hold off Pelicans 120-112

em>By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press /em> MIAMI (AP)-- Goran Dragic played through a black eye and bloodied mouth to score 33 points, Hassan Whiteside had 20 points and 17 rebounds, and the Miami Heat beat the New Orleans Pelicans 120-112 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). Wayne Ellington scored 19 for the Heat, who made 16 three-pointers and have won 18 consecutive games when connecting at least 10 times from beyond the arc. Dion Waiters added 14, and James Johnson and Tyler Johnson had 10 apiece for Miami. The Heat (33-35) won for the 22nd time in 27 games and are 14-1 in their last 15 at home. Anthony Davis scored 27 points and DeMarcus Cousins added 19 for the Pelicans. E'Twaun Moore scored 18 off the bench on 8-for-12 shooting for New Orleans, which got 11 points apiece from Jrue Holiday and Dante Cunningham. Miami took the lead for good on a three-point flurry late — three straight, one from Josh Richardson and the last two from James Johnson. That quick 9-0 run put Miami on top 111-102, and the Heat didn’t trail again. The win, at least temporarily, moved Miami past Milwaukee and into the No. 8 spot in the Eastern Conference standings — a far cry from where the team was two months ago, when the Heat were trying to avoid having the worst record in the NBA. “Nothing’s guaranteed,” coach Erik Spoelstra said. “Everybody’s talking about how far we’ve come and what we’ve accomplished. We’re not in the playoffs yet. But at least we were given an opportunity to show persistence and develop that.” Miami led by 14 early, but most of that eroded during a 15-2 New Orleans run in the second quarter. And after never leading in the first half, the Pelicans started the third with a 9-0 spurt to go up 61-54 — finishing off what was a 21-point turnaround over about a nine-minute stretch. But Miami rallied, grabbed an 85-79 lead going into the fourth, and then went 7 for 9 from 3-point range in the final quarter to prevail. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Pelicans: /strong> /em> Cousins got his 19th technical of the season, part of his eventful night. He left the court with 1:35 to play after getting hit in the midsection by Miami’s James Johnson. Cousins was called for a shooting foul on the drive; James Johnson was called for a technical. Davis was bloodied near his right elbow in the second quarter. em> strong>Heat: /strong> /em> Dragic — who missed Sunday’s (Monday, PHL time) game in Indiana because his right eye was swollen shut — was fouled on two more three-point tries, giving him 21 of those this season. He’s turned those resulting free throws into 53 points, which would work out to an equivalent three-point percentage of 84.1 percent. Whiteside has 14 consecutive games with at least 10 rebounds, a Heat franchise first. Miami improved to 11-2 on Wednesdays (Thursday, PHL time). strong>WINNING COMBO /strong> The Heat are 19-5 when Dragic, Waiters, Whiteside, Luke Babbitt and Rodney McGruder start a game. When using any other starting five this season — there have been 19 — the Heat are 14-30. strong>WELCOME TO MIAMI? /strong> Including his Sacramento days, Cousins has appeared in 12 games at Miami. His teams are 1-11. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Pelicans: /strong> /em>Host the Houston Rockets on Friday (Saturday, PHL time), the start of a three-game homestand. em> strong>Heat: /strong> /em> Host the Timberwolves on Friday (Saturday, PHL time), looking to sweep Minnesota for the first time since 2012-13. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 16th, 2017

NBA Filipino Heritage Week matchup: Pelicans vs Heat

Welcome to the first-ever NBA Filipino Heritage Week! It’s a celebration of Philippine culture not just for Filipino fans in the United States, but all over the world. This weekend, NBA Philippines is hosting two viewing parties at the Globe Amphitheater located at 7th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. On Saturday, March 18, the Minnesota Timberwolves will face the Miami Heat at 8:00am (PHL time), then on Sunday, March 19, the Milwaukee Bucks will visit the Golden State Warriors with tip-off at 10:30am (PHL time).  While our nation prepares for this weekend’s festivities, the New Orleans Pelicans will travel to South Beach to take on Erik Spoelstra and the Miami Heat to officially kick off Filipino Heritage Week. Now, being that Spoelstra is Filipino, it’s safe to say that majority of the people in Manila will be rooting for the Heat to beat the Pelicans in tomorrow’s game. Well, here are five keys to victory for the Miami Heat as they try to slay the Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins-led New Orleans Pelicans: strong>1. Clog the paint and crash the boards /strong> When the Heat played the Pelicans last December 23, Anthony Davis scored 28 points and grabbed a career-high 22 rebounds, with New Orleans successfully defended home court, winning 91-87.  This is going to be the second and final game between these two teams in the regular season, and now that DeMarcus Cousins in the picture, Miami has to become even more aggressive on the boards. They have to put bodies in the paint to keep Davis and Cousins off the glass. It’s not going to be easy as Davis and Cousins average 11.8 RPG and 10.8 RPG respectively. Miami does have the top rebounder in the league in Hassan Whiteside (14.2 RPG), but, he can’t do it alone. Rodney McGruder, Luke Babbitt and Dion Waiters have to help out in the rebounding department as well. strong>2. Keep the fire of “The Dragon” burning /strong> Goran Dragi&'263; is Miami’s leading scorer averaging 20.1 PPG. He’s put up at least 15 points for a career-high 31-straight games. The 30-year-old Slovenian is also averaging 3.8 RPG and 6.0 APG. His match-up with former All-Star Jrue Holiday won’t be an easy one. Dragi&'263; must be aggressive from the get-go as Miami relies heavily on him to put up the points and run the offense as well.  strong>3. Let Dion Waiters shoot /strong> One player who can take a little pressure off of Dragi&'263; is his backcourt mate, Dion Waiters. If Waiters gets going early, Dragi&'263; won’t have to worry too much about scoring. Waiters is averaging 23.3 points for the Heat in their last four games. During that stretch, he also shot an impressive 53.1 percent (17-of-32) from three-point range. Waiters has got to “Let It Fly” like Mike Miller in the 2012 NBA Finals. strong>4. Play with a sense of urgency /strong> If the Playoffs started today, Miami wouldn’t be in it. Right now, the Heat are tied for ninth place in the East with the Chicago Bulls as both teams own a 32-35 record. But, that’s not too far behind the Milwaukee Bucks, who hold the eighth spot at 32-34. Miami has 15 games left on their schedule and only six of them will be played away from home. The Heat’s record at the American Airlines Arena this season is 18-14 and this match-up against New Orleans is the beginning of a five-game home stand.  strong>5. Be inspired by the Filipino fighting spirit of Erik Spoelstra /strong> As part of the Filipino Heritage Week festivities, there will be in-arena Philippine-themed musical performances and activities to ignite the crowd. Spoelstra, whose mother is Filipina, is currently in his ninth season as the head coach of the Miami Heat. His overall regular season record is 431-276. He led the franchise to back-to-back titles in 2012 and 2013. Because of these achievements, he is well-respected by the organization and the community. Therefore, the players should be compelled to give their coach a good effort as the NBA pays homage to Philippine culture.  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 15th, 2017

Shorthanded FEU comes back to draw UE

Plagued with injuries and suspensions, a shorthanded Far Eastern University squad came back from a goal down to hold University of the East to a 1-1 draw in UAAP Season 79 men's football action, Sunday evening at the Rizal Memorial Stadium. UE star sophomore Mar Diano got things going early for the Red Warriors, converting from a free kick in just the fifth minute to become the first person to breach FEU's goal line this season.  Playing without the likes of star midfielder Paolo Bugas, Dominique Canonigo and Justin Calamba due to injuries, as well as Michael Menzi due to card card accumulation, the Tamaraws had their work cut out for them, and found themselves looking to equalize for the first time this season.  The Tams wouldn't have to wait too long though, as Audie Menzi would play savior, blasting a free kick from near-midfield straight through the hands of UE keeper Frank Rieza in the 25th minute.  The second half proved to be a time to shine for both keepers, as UE's Rieza and FEU's RJ Joyel made sure that the draw remained unchanged, even after the multiple chances.  'Sobrang ganda lang ng nilaro namin. So far, para sa akin, ito yung pinaka-magandang nilaro ng UE,' coach Fitch Florence Arboleda said, post match.  After winning their last match agaisnt Adamson, and then managing the draw against a high scoring team like FEU, Arboleda says he's confident about what the Red Warriors can do in the second round.  'Talagang confident naman ako sa UE ngayon eh, talagang nandun kami, yun nga lang, yung nagiging problema lang namin yung own mistakes namin.' 'For the second round, abangan nila kami,' Arboleda added.  As for the Tamaraws, the atmosphere was less jubilant. I feel that we could have done better today, It's always difficult when you fall a goal behind, but I think we did okay to get level before the half,' said FEU head coach Vince Santos.  For the Tamaraws, the focus shifts to the round-ending matchup with league-leading Ateneo.  The draw puts FEU at four wins and two draws for 14 points, while UE stays in the hunt for a playoff berth with one win, two draws, and four losses for five points.    .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 5th, 2017

Once-promising Tungcab no longer with Adamson, says Pumaren

A prized prospect out of its high school program and then the face of Adamson University in his rookie year, Jaydee Tungcab will no longer don the blue and white. According to head coach Franz Pumaren, the versatile swingman will no longer be a Soaring Falcon. Asked to confirm reports that Tungcab is indeed no longer with Adamson, the multi-tiled mentor answered in the affirmative to ABS-CBN Sports. The development was first reported by Akari Sports. In same report, Pumaren shared that Tungcab has been missing his classes and as such, will have a tough time getting passing grades. “I don’t think he will pass this semester. He won’t be eligible (for next season) anyway so what’s the use of him training,” he said. The now 19-year-old was a Mythical Team member in his last year as a Baby Falcon. In his first year as a Soaring Falcon in Season 77, Tungcab was one of the main men in a talent-lacking lineup. Come Pumaren’s arrival in Season 78, however, his roller-coaster play got him inconsistent minutes. The wing player averaged 6.9 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 1.4 assists through two years with Adamson. ABS-CBN Sports tried to get in touch with Tungcab, but is yet to receive a response as of press time. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMar 4th, 2017

Celtics keep assets, make no moves at trade deadline

em>By Kyle Hightower, Associated Press /em> WALTHAM, Mass. (AP) — The Celtics went into Thursday's (Friday, PHL time) trade deadline armed with the assets needed to make a major deal and put pressure on the Eastern Conference favorite Cleveland Cavaliers. But any potential deal will have to wait until another day. For the second straight year Boston's roster will go unchanged heading into the second half of the season, despite what President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge said were tempting discussions with several teams. 'We had a lot of conversations, there's things that we could do to improve our team, but nothing that is good enough to do,' Ainge said. Ainge entered the day in an enviable position thanks to a roster loaded with young talent and two first-round draft picks he holds from Brooklyn over the next two drafts. Boston has the right to swap first-round picks with the Nets this summer. Brooklyn currently has the worst record in the NBA. If it remains there, that pick would hold the highest odds of becoming No. 1 overall in the draft lottery. While he wouldn't discuss specifics of what deals were on the table, Ainge said the potential of having the top draft pick this summer played a role in discussions with teams Thursday (Friday, PHL time). 'We're trying to upgrade our team. But it is a delicate balance of short term goals and long term goals,' he said. 'Obviously both are important.' All-Star point guard Isaiah Thomas, who set the Twitter world and NBA rumor will abuzz this week with cryptic emoji tweets of peering eyes and an hour glass, said he was intrigued by the idea of adding another All-Star like Indiana's Paul George or Chicago's Jimmy Butler. 'For sure. Those are All-Star type players, superstars that can change your organization,' Thomas said. 'Like I've always said, I'll roll with the guys I've got in this locker room until something changes. I always mean that.' Even before the deadline passed, coach Brad Stevens said that he expected there to be minimal changes to his roster. 'I don't think that when you're in a position where you're playing at a pretty good level that you should anticipate much change,' Stevens said after his team practiced early Thursday afternoon (early Friday, PHL time). 'At the end of the day I think that my job is try to focus on the 15 guys that are here.' He has yet to see what a fully healthy group can truly do. Boston's starting lineup of Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley, Al Horford, Jae Crowder and Amir Johnson has played in just 21 of 57 games this season. They are 16-5 in those games, but will begin the second half Friday (Saturday, PHL time) in Toronto still not injury-free. Bradley has been out since Jan. 18 (Jan. 19, PHL time) with a sore right Achilles tendon. He was a partial participant in Thursday’s (Friday, PHL time) practice, but isn't expected to play against the Raptors. Considering how well the Celtics have played through injuries this season, Ainge said he's confident the roster can compete for the East title as is. 'We won't put a ceiling on this team, but we haven't seen the best of this team,' Ainge said. 'We like the depth of the team. We like the youth of the team. We like the energy and enthusiasm of our team.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 23rd, 2017

D-League getting respect as legit NBA minor league system

By Kareem Copeland, Associated Press SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Joel Bolomboy has been back and forth between the NBA Development League's Salt Lake City Stars and the Utah Jazz 15 times since November. In the old system, the second-round draft pick would have been racking up frequent flyer miles bouncing around the minor leagues and overseas, much like Hassan Whiteside and Danny Green did before him. But in a growing trend around the NBA, the Jazz moved their D-League team closer to home — from Boise, Idaho to Salt Lake City. Front-office executives are seeing that the closer a D-League affiliate is to the NBA team and its staff, and more integrated into the organization, the better it can be used as a true minor league resource. 'Your average NBA team has a better understanding today than they did four years ago of the caliber and the quality of player that's in the D-League,' said Donnie Nelson, Mavericks president of basketball operations. 'And that's rising literally every year. 'It's like American Idol in a lot of respects. We have brought the stage to the buyer, rather than having to go overseas and chase down. And those of us that are quote, unquote, the real judges on the American Idol panel, we can see them firsthand.' The NBA Development League has grown from an eight-team, largely overlooked sideshow to a 22-team league inching closer to becoming a legitimate minor league system. The league, in its 16th season, is no longer a final grasp for players clinging to a dream of playing professional basketball but a respected avenue to get to the NBA. A record 22 teams have direct affiliations with an NBA team this season, including five new ones. The Bucks, Grizzlies and Magic have purchased teams slated to join for the 2017-18 season, when it will be known as the Gatorade League. NBA teams have learned to better use the system. A record 38 percent of all players in the NBA had spent some time in the D-League at the end of the 2015-16 season. Nelson believes it's the 'fastest, most effective' path to the NBA. The perception of the league has changed among players, who once tried to avoid it at all costs. Whiteside is one of the biggest D-League success stories. But before becoming the center for the Miami Heat, his travels took him to Reno, Sioux Falls, Rio Grande, stints in the Lebanese Basketball and Chinese National Basketball leagues and back to the D-League with Iowa. He signed with the Heat in 2014, and in 2016 signed a four-year, $98.4 million contract. 'The D-League's tough,' Whiteside said. 'If being in the D-League doesn't motivate you, nothing will. It was a really tough to play. ... It gives guys a chance to stay in America and let scouts see them. 'I had a dream and I was just so undeterred. They would have had to move mountains to get me off of my dream. It was going to happen regardless.' Whiteside is one of many D-League success stories. After being undrafted, Yogi Ferrell landed in the D-League and got a 10-day contract with the Mavericks before signing a multiyear deal in early February. Green played for Erie, Reno and Austin before being a starter on the Spurs' 2013-14 Spurs championship team. Rudy Gobert spent significant time in the D-League as a rookie and signed a four-year, $102 million deal with the Jazz in October. 'Reps, particularly with point guards, are huge,' Jazz coach Quin Snyder said. 'You can't make up for repetitions. Even in an NBA game, there's a difference between fitting in and playing a role and having an opportunity to get reps and make mistakes. 'I hope our guys get a chance to do that and make a lot of mistakes and get better [with the Stars] and don't make them here.' Compensation, however, continues to be an issue for the league. The NBA took a step toward addressing the concerns in the latest collective bargaining agreement. Players typically can make more money overseas, but the league created a 'two-way contract' that allows a team to hold onto a developing young player with a contract that includes a considerable salary increase. The rule increases the NBA roster from 15 to 17, with those final two spots for players going back and forth between the two leagues. D-League President Malcolm Turner believes the two-way contract can keep more talent from going overseas and expects the new sponsorship with Gatorade to provide additional training and nutrition benefits for players through the company's Sports Science Institute. The ultimate goal is that each of the 30 NBA teams will own its own affiliate and use those squads as a true minor league farm system. 'I think it's deeper, I think there's more respect on all levels from organizations,' Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said of the D-League. 'Players now respect it more, they see that they have a real opportunity if they're in the right place to develop and get a call-up. 'They went to Europe or China before. But each organization is different. We know for us, it is a major component of player development.' It's fast becoming a major component for every NBA team. ___ em>The Associated Press' Schuyler Dixon and Tim Reynolds contributed to this report. /em> .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 23rd, 2017

Antetokounmpo scores 33, Bucks hold off Nets 129-125

em>By Brian Mahoney, Associated Press /em> NEW YORK -- Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 33 points in his final game before making his All-Star debut, Greg Monroe added 25 and the Milwaukee Bucks sent the Brooklyn Nets to the break on a 14-game skid with a 129-125 victory Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). Khris Middleton finished with 20 points in his strongest game since returning from a ruptured left hamstring that forced him to miss the first 50 games. He made four free throws in the final 19 seconds as the Bucks won their third straight. Monroe was 12 for 16 from the field after going 12 for 15 on Monday in a victory over Detroit. He has two straight 20-point games after just one previously this season. Brook Lopez scored a season-high 36 points for the Nets. They have lost 16 straight at home. The Bucks led 95-82 after a 33-point third quarter, but Spencer Dinwiddie scored 15 of his season-high 19 in the fourth and the Nets got within two a few times. But Antetokounmpo, voted to start Sunday (Monday, PHL time) in New Orleans, had a basket with 47 seconds to play before Middleton closed it out from the line. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Bucks: /strong> /em>Michael Beasley scored 14 points, and Matthew Dellavedova and Tony Snell each had 10. The Bucks beat the Nets for the eighth straight time. em> strong>Nets: /strong> /em> The Nets open the second half with an eight-game road trip and don't play at Barclays Center again until March 12 (March 13, PHL time). They haven't won in Brooklyn since Dec. 26 (Dec. 27, PHL time). Trevor Booker scored 18 off the bench. strong>MIDDLETON'S MINUTES /strong> Middleton played about 18 minutes a game in his first three games but played 26 on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). Coach Jason Kidd said before the game the Bucks would determine his status over the next week. 'We'll talk about his minutes, we'll talk about starting, we'll talk about all that fun stuff over the break,' Kidd said. strong>LIN CLOSE /strong> Jeremy Lin, who hasn't played since straining his left hamstring on Dec. 26 (Dec. 27, PHL time), returned to full practice Tuesday. He's expected to play Feb. 24 (Feb. 25, PHL time) at Denver in the Nets' first game after the All-Star break. 'You can see his impact right off the bat and it was only an hour and 15 minute practice,' coach Kenny Atkinson said. 'But we felt it and that's good for all of us, all of our morale right now, our confidence that he's on the verge of coming back. And he's anxious to come back and help the team.' strong>BOUCHARD'S BET /strong> Tennis player Genie Bouchard watched from a courtside seat after keeping her word to a fan who asked for a date on Twitter if the Patriots won the Super Bowl. The Canadian star was in New York on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) for ceremonies tied to the 'Sports Illustrated' swimsuit issue, in which she appears. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Bucks: /strong> /em>Host Utah on Feb. 24 (Feb. 25, PHL time). The Jazz have won five of the last six meetings, including a 104-88 victory on Feb. 1. em> strong>Nets: /strong> /em>Feb. 24 (Feb. 25, PHL time) in Denver to start an eight-game trip. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 16th, 2017

Spurs top Pacers for NBA-record 20th straight winning season

em>By Michael Marot, Associated Press /em> INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Kawhi Leonard scored 32 points and the San Antonio Spurs clinched their NBA-record 20th consecutive winning season with a 110-106 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Monday night (Tuesday, PHL time). LaMarcus Aldridge scored 10 of his 19 points during the final 6.5 minutes as the Spurs improved to 42-13 in the season following Tim Duncan's retirement. They have had a winning record every season since 1997-98, when Duncan was a rookie, and broke a tie with the Utah Jazz, who had 19 straight winning seasons from 1985-2004. Paul George scored 27 points and Myles Turner had 22 for the Pacers, who have lost four straight -- three on their home court. George's three-pointer with 21 seconds left cut it to 107-104, but the Spurs closed it out at the free-throw line to bounce back from their loss in New York on Sunday (Monday, PHL time). Indiana took a 95-91 lead with 5:17 left. But the Pacers missed five free throws after that and turned the ball over with 29 seconds left in a four-point game. San Antonio looked ready to pull away when it used an 11-0 run in the third-quarter to make it 81-72. But the Pacers closed the quarter on a 7-2 flurry to get within 83-79 and opened the fourth on an 8-1 spurt to retake an 87-84 lead on back-to-back breakaway dunks from Monta Ellis. They just couldn't hold it against the team with the NBA's second-best record. Leonard has scored 30 or more points in five straight games. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Spurs: /strong> /em> Leonard also extended his streak of double-digit scoring games to 84, the longest streak by a San Antonio player since Duncan's 91-game streak ended in 2003. Danny Green, Tony Parker and David Lee each scored 12 points and Dwayne Dedmon had six points and 12 rebounds. San Antonio was 23-of-27 from the free-throw line. Coach Gregg Popovich earned win No. 1,031, moving within 24 of Phil Jackson for sixth in league history. em> strong>Pacers: /strong> /em>Jeff Teague had 15 points, Rodney Stuckey finished with 13 and Kevin Seraphin had 12 in his first start of the season. Indiana has lost eight of its last nine home games against San Antonio. Indiana was outscored 15-4 on second-chance points and 44-36 on points in the paint. The Pacers were 21-of-30 on free throws. Starting forward Thaddeus Young sat out again with a sprained left wrist. C.J. Miles made one triple to move within two of Mike Dunleavy (408) for No. 7 in the franchise's NBA history. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Spurs: /strong> /em> Will make their sixth stop on an eight-game road trip at Orlando on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). em> strong>Pacers: /strong> /em> Will try to avoid a sixth consecutive loss at Cleveland on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 14th, 2017

Teng flirts with triple-double as AMA goes streaking once more

Jeron Teng had a near-perfect send-off, going three assists shy of a triple-double as AMA Online Education turned back Victoria Sports-MLQU, 88-80, Monday in the 2017 PBA D-League Aspirants' Cup at the Ynares Arena in Pasig. The De La Salle University product carried his side with 18 points, 10 rebounds, and seven assists as the Titans bagged their fourth win in six games. Juami Tiongson also made his mark, taking over in the fourth in unloading all but eight of his 22 markers in the period while also hauling down a total of four boards. It wasn't an easy win, though, as AMA lost hold of a 20-point advantage, 57-37, in the third frame and saw it cut down to as low as six, 86-80, with 20.3 seconds left. Tiongson, however, made the game-clinching freebies to secure the win for the Titans. '’Di naman kami totally umaasa kay Jeron. May iba pa rin dyan like Juami and PJ Barua na kayang mag-contribute para sa amin,' coach Mark Herrera said. AMA's resolve will be tested next week when it plays Blustar Detergent without Teng, who will be with Mighty Sports for an invitational in Dubai. Robbie Herndon topped winless Victoria (0-4) with 24 points, 11 rebounds, and six assists, while Aris Dionisio had 23 markers, 17 boards, and three blocks. In the first game, Cignal-San Beda College stamped its class anew and routed Batangas, 95-68, for its third straight victory. Robert Bolick and Byron Villarias tore the Batanguenos to shreds in the second quarter, teaming up for 16 of the Hawkeyes' 31 points in the frame to pull away at halftime, 56-34. They would further extend the lead to as much as 27, 71-44. Cignal is now on a three-way logjam at second place with Tanduay and CafeFrance, all carrying identical 3-1 records. Bolick topped the Hawkeyes with 19 points, five rebounds, and three assists and Villarias got 13 markers on a 3-of-6 clip from threes. Coach Boyet Fernandez, though, kept his focus on the team's continued development, saying, 'This is a team in progress. We still have to develop our teamwork because we only started a month ago.' Still, he's happy that he's seeing positive signs for his squad four games into the tournament. 'Credit to my boys because they played well today. This will only help us improve our teamwork as we play more stronger teams in the future,' he said. Cedrick Ablaza topped Batangas (1-4) with 16 points and five rebounds. BOX SCORES FIRST GAME CIGNAL 95 - Bolick 19, Villarias 13, Perkins 11, Batino 10, Raymundo 9, Potts 8, Oftana 7, Mocon 5, Arong 4, Tongco 3, Adamos 2, Bahio 2, Bringas 2, Arboleda 0. BATANGAS 68 - Ablaza 16, De Joya 12, Anderson 7, Isit 6, Sara 6, Laude 5, Dela Pena 4, Sedurifa 4, Fortu 3, Lascano 3, Delfinado 2, Magbuhos 0, Mendoza 0, Revadavia 0. QUARTER SCORES: 25-22, 56-34, 73-50, 95-68. SECOND GAME AMA 88 - Tiongson 22, Teng 18, Bragais 15, Arambulo 9, Alabanza 7, Flores 6, Barua 4, Riley 3, Jumao-as 2, Taganas 2, Carpio 0, Jordan 0, Macaranas 0, Malones 0. VICTORIA SPORTS 80 - Herndon 24, Dionisio 23, Grimaldo 10, Lao 9, Mag-isa 6, Koga 5, Nicholls 3, Bitoon 0, Butron 0, Ragasa 0, Sorela 0. QUARTER SCORES: 17-15, 46-37, 69-53, 88-80. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 13th, 2017

Relegation a genuine prospect for stumbling Leicester

STEVE DOUGLAS, AP Sports Writer br /> MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Relegation is looming as a genuine prospect for stuttering Premier League champion Leicester. It's 79 years since a defending champion was relegated from England's top division — the fate befell Manchester City in 1938 — but Leicester is heading that way after a 3-0 home loss to Manchester United on Sunday. That left Claudio Ranieri's team in 16th place in the 20-team league, one point above the relegation zone with 14 matches left. This time last season, the Foxes were atop the standings and on their way to the most remarkable title triumph in Premier League history. 'Let's not talk about last season. It's gone,' Leicester goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel said. 'It is not a comfortable situation. It has been terrible, embarrassing. It is time for each one of us — from the top to the bottom of this club — to be counted. If we don't, we will be relegated.' Leicester hasn't scored in five league games in 2017 and is still without a win away from home all season, hardly encouraging statistics ahead of an important game next weekend at 17th-placed Swansea. Unconfirmed reports of dressing-room unrest have surfaced in the British media in recent weeks, adding to Leicester's problems. The team clearly misses the influence of central midfielder N'Golo Kante, who left for Chelsea in the offseason, while other star players from last season — notably Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy — have lost their form altogether. Motivation also seems an issue, with progress in the Champions League having been the priority in the first half of the season. Ranieri, who is starting to come under criticism, has tried different formations and different players but to no avail. In 24 games of the title defense, Leicester has lost 13 of them. For United, it's 15 matches unbeaten in the league and the top four — and therefore the Champions League qualifications positions — are in sight for Jose Mourinho's men. United is sixth, two points behind fourth-placed Liverpool. It was also a good day for Man City, which beat Swansea 2-1 thanks to Gabriel Jesus' injury-time goal to climb above Arsenal and Liverpool into third place. A look at Sunday's games: ___ LEICESTER 0, MAN UNITED 3 United scored three goals in an eight-minute period either side of halftime at King Power Stadium. Henrikh Mkhitaryan's brilliant run and finish broke the deadlock in the 42nd and Zlatan Ibrahimovic added a second with a first-time strike 88 seconds later , his 15th league goal of the season. Juan Mata was perhaps fortunate not to receive a first-half red card for a robust tackle on Vardy in the first half, so it was even more galling for Leicester fans to see the Spain playmaker make it 3-0 in the 49th from Mkhitaryan's pass. 'We are still in the same position,' Mourinho said, 'but we are closer to the others so we keep fighting.' ___ MAN CITY 2, SWANSEA 1 Gabriel Jesus against started ahead of Sergio Aguero and justified the selection by scoring twice, including the winner two minutes into second-half stoppage time. That's three goals in his first two starts in the league for the 19-year-old Brazil striker, who has adjusted quickly to the English game and delighted City coach Pep Guardiola with his work rate and desire as well as his goals. 'Everybody is a bit surprised by his level,' said Guardiola. Gabriel Jesus put City ahead in the 11th minute, before Swansea equalized in the 82nd through Gylfi Sigurdsson. ___ LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP A clash between rival managers sparked a free-for-all between players and coaching staff of Huddersfield and Leeds at the end of a Yorkshire derby in the second-tier League Championship. Huddersfield coach David Wagner raced down the touchline and joined in the celebrations of his players after an 89th-minute goal by Michael Hefele, which proved to be the winner in a 2-1 victory for the hosts. As Wagner returned to his bench, he was blocked off by Leeds manager Garry Monk, leading to a confrontation. Players from both sides then got involved in the melee, leading to three players getting booked and both Wagner and Monk getting sent to the stands. Wagner said he was not being disrespectful with his celebration, with Monk replying: 'I hold myself in a certain way and I have humility and respect.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 6th, 2017

Pacers hold on to beat Magic 98-88 on the road

em>By Terrance Harris, Associated Press /em> ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- C.J. Miles scored 16 points, Glenn Robinson III added 14 and the Indiana Pacers held on to beat the Orlando Magic 98-88 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). The Pacers used their smaller lineup and timely three-point shooting to keep the struggling Magic from rallying. Orlando didn't have an answer for Miles' three-point shooting, including a trey that pushed the lead to 96-88 in the final two minutes of the fourth quarter. Orlando moved within five points a few times in the final period but could not come any closer. Jeff Teague had 13 points and nine assists and was 8-for-9 from the free-throw line to join six Pacers in double figures. Serge Ibaka led five Magic players in double figures with 20 points. The Pacers have defeated their former coach Frank Vogel four straight times this season and look like a team on the rise. They have won four straight to stay in the Eastern Conference playoff mix. Orlando, meanwhile, is letting its playoff hopes fade fast with its second straight loss and fifth in its last six games. The Magic slipped to 8-16 at Amway Center. After trailing by nine points at halftime, the Magic picked up their defense and played with more patience offensively in the third quarter as they pulled within four points late in quarter on a three-pointer by C.J. Watson. Indiana was able to stretch back out to an 80-74 advantage when Rodney Stuckey converted a jumper in the waning moments of the third. The Pacers took advantage of their smaller lineup to create mismatches during the first half to take a 56-47 lead into halftime. Indiana, which led by as many as 15 points in the second quarter, used its speed and quickness advantage, especially at the power forward spot to keep Orlando on its heels during the opening two quarters. Thaddeus Young and reserve Lavoy Allen combined for 14 points on 5-of-7 shooting in the first half as Orlando's big three of Serge Ibaka, Nikola Vucevic and Bismack Biyombo struggled to guard them on the perimeter. Teague also proved to be a tough matchup for the Magic guards as he consistently beat them off the dribble to draw fouls. He was 8-of-9 from the free-throw line and led the Pacers with 11 points while Paul George had seven points in the first half and finished with eight. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Pacers: /strong> /em>Indiana began the game shooting 80 percent from the field to take an 18-6 lead in the first five minutes. Indiana finished the month of January with a 9-4 record, which was the fifth highest in the NBA during the month. George had scored 30-plus points in four consecutive games. em> strong>Magic: /strong> /em>Starting guard Evan Fournier returned to the starting lineup for the first time in nine games. He missed eight games with a foot injury and returned to the floor during Monday night's (Tuesday, PHL time) loss at Minnesota. Watson returned to coming off the bench. Orlando went 4-12 during January. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Pacers: /strong> /em>Indiana continues its road trip with a stop in Brooklyn to take on the last place Nets on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). em> strong>Magic: /strong> /em> Last than week since stunning Toronto on the road, the Magic get to host the Raptors at Amway Center on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 2nd, 2017

Lakers hold off Nuggets 120-116, snap latest losing streak

em>By Greg Beacham, Associated Press /em> LOS ANGELES (AP) — Nick Young scored 23 points, Lou Williams added 21 and the Los Angeles Lakers survived a frantic fourth quarter to snap their seven-game home losing streak against Denver, beating the Nuggets 120-116 on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time). Rookie Ivica Zubac scored a career-high 17 points for the Lakers, who snapped their three-game skid despite getting outscored 40-39 in the wild final period. Wilson Chandler scored 12 of his 26 points in the fourth for the Nuggets, whose three-game winning streak ended with just their third loss in 10 games. D'Angelo Russell had 22 points, a career-high 10 assists and seven rebounds for the Lakers in his return from a three-game absence with a pair of mild leg injuries. His pick-and-rolls with Zubac allowed the Lakers to generate consistent offense in the fourth quarter. The Nuggets hit their first six three-point attempts and scored 11 consecutive points to open the fourth, but Williams scored 13 points in the final period and Zubac added eight. Williams put the Lakers ahead to stay on a layup with 2:17 left. Zubac and Russell added jumpers on the Lakers' next two possessions. Kenneth Faried had 14 points and 17 rebounds, but managed only two points and three boards after halftime in the Nuggets' second straight game without rising Serbian star Nikola Jokic. The Nuggets beat the Lakers at Staples Center two weeks ago, and they hadn't lost a road game in this rivalry since November 2012 during the Lakers' most recent playoff season. But the Lakers had the previous four days off, and it showed in a resilient offensive performance. The Lakers played their second straight game without starting forward Julius Randle, who is recovering from pneumonia. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Nuggets: /strong> /em>Jokic did light work in practice, and coach Michael Malone calls him day-to-day. Jokic has a strained hip flexor. Faried was out-rebounding the Lakers' entire roster for much of the first quarter. He finished the first half with 14 boards, compared with 20 by the Lakers. em> strong>Lakers: /strong> /em> They have just one home game in the next 25 days, with a five-game East Coast road trip beginning Thursday (Friday, PHL time). Russell hadn't played since getting hurt on the second possession of a win over Indiana on Jan. 20 (Jan. 21, PHL time). David Beckham watched the game at courtside. So did current LA Galaxy stars Giovani Dos Santos and Romain Alessandrini, the French midfielder officially signed from Marseille earlier in the day. Timofey Mozgov had 12 points against his former team. The Russian was with Denver from 2010-15. The Lakers hope Randle will be ready for their upcoming road trip. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Nuggets: /strong> /em>Host Grizzlies on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). em> strong>Lakers: /strong> /em> At Wizards on Thursday (Friday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 1st, 2017