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Stephen bests Seth in Curry brothers backyard basketball showdown

By Shaun Powell, NBA.com OAKLAND, Calif. — For a special moment, Game 2 of the Western Conference finals relocated from Oracle Arena to a backyard court with a hoop in suburban Charlotte, N.C., and every player save for two suddenly disappeared, and 19,595 witnesses were reduced by 19,593, with the remaining pair watching and pointing from the kitchen window. Yes, late-1990s nostalgia intervened in a tight contest between the Warriors and Trail Blazers. It was Curry vs. Curry all over again, an entertaining spectacle for their amused parents yet a tense one for their sons, Steph and Seth, fiercely trying to take down the other. [Watch the Playoffs on NBA League Pass for 30% less with this limited time offer! Select Annual package and use code SAVE30 at checkout to redeem] Even if you weren’t there at the Curry household for those brotherhood battles back in the day, couldn’t you just envision how they developed, much as it did on a dramatic Thursday, two decades later on the other side of the country? There was so much riding on those 1-on-1s then, such as a noogie for the loser, the last remaining cookie for the winner, and most certainly bragging rights, at least for the day. This time, the stakes were tame by comparison, just an ordinary game in mid-May that could dictate which brother eventually goes to the NBA Finals and which one sits next to Dell and Sonya in the stands and watches, nothing more or less. “Yeah, sure,” laughed Seth. “Something like that.” OK, perhaps this was huge after all. This was Steph with 37 points and eight assists rallying the Warriors back from 17 points down, only to get push-back from his brother, who played the best game of his NBA career. This was Seth, younger by three years, getting 16 points and four steals in the game -- all four out of Steph's pocket -- to give the Blazers an unexpected lift. The performance earned enough confidence from coach Terry Stotts that he played the entire fourth quarter. Seth was assigned to check Steph, and vice-versa, and it was a family issue played out before the basketball world. It was a thrilling one at that, because at one point you weren’t sure which Curry would get the best of the other. “This was like the coolest experience I think I’ve ever had playing against him,” said Steph. “Every minute he was out there defensively, he was a pest. Made big shots in the fourth quarter. He was amazing tonight.” Seth made all three of his shots in the fourth quarter, all of them on three-pointers, and a few in Steph’s mug. If he wasn’t the Blazers’ best option, at least he was an option, one that the Warriors -- and the other Curry -- had to respect. He helped the Blazers cling to an eight-point lead with four minutes and change left, until the expected happened and those early bragging rights were rudely snatched back. Playing once again without the comfort of Kevin Durant, Steph shot and willed his team to victory and a 2-0 lead in the series, drawing a foul beyond the arc and draining three free throws to put the Warriors up two. Seth had one last answer, a 29-footer that temporarily regained the lead before the Warriors wore down Portland and went home, 114-111, on Andre Iguodala's last-second strip of Damian Lillard. In all, it was a must-see contest … and the game wasn’t too bad, either. “I mean, they’re brothers,” said Lillard. “For me, having my own older brother, I know what it’s like to go against your brother and what it means. They both know there’s going to be conversations about this at some point when this series is over and they’re going to play like it.” Perhaps somewhat surprisingly, there wasn’t much chatter between them; Seth said they were too involved in the game for that. Well, maybe just a touch: “He tried to distract me at the free-throw line in the fourth quarter and I knew I had to go back at him to stay focused on what I needed to do,” admitted Steph. There was more of an urgency on Seth’s part to make this game and this drama happen. After his brother and Klay Thompson took turns dropping an avalanche of jumpers on the Blazers in Game 1, Portland needed a new strategy to defend the pick and roll. So they decided to trap constantly, and they needed agile players for that, which meant less time for Enes Kanter and more time for others, including Seth. Of course, there was another reason to play Seth for 29 minutes: Who else knows Steph Curry better than him? “I’ve seen every Warriors game and every Steph game for the past 10 years,” he said. “I feel like I know some things he likes to do, but it wasn’t enough.” That’s true. You can have all the scouting reports and, in this case, all the backyard hoop experience in the world. There’s only so much one can do against a two-time Kia MVP and widely-regarded Best Shooter Of All Time. Still: there were those four steals by Seth, two of them clean picks off Steph, who’s difficult to strip because of his crafty dribble. And those shots against him. Seth was a problem Thursday (Friday, PHL time), and an irritating one. “I felt like he was thinking where I was at times,” Seth said. I was just trying to make it tough on him. He’s going to do what he does, but if you make him work a little more, make it tough on him, that’s all you can ask.” Seth's had the harder road to this point. While Steph became a basketball icon, Seth kept bouncing between teams over five years, never securing the big contract, fighting to carve a spot in the rotation, and finally getting the chance to do just that. Just a few years ago, Seth played for the Warriors’ G-League team in Santa Cruz, in the shadow of his brother, wondering when he’d get his chance to make his own path. “I don’t take this for granted,” he said. “To get to this point and be a contributor, this is what I worked for all those years. I was confident I could be here, and now that I’m here, I will try to make the most of it. I always want the ball and try to be aggressive and tonight when I found the ball in my hands, I was locked in.” This will give Stotts and the Blazers something to ponder as the series moves to Portland, where they’ll try to keep from becoming another piece of Warriors playoff roadkill. Chances are good, then, that Seth’s spot in heavy rotation is safe. “Every time we played them this season, Seth has played great and I think it has something to do with playing his brother,” said Lillard. “This time I thought he guarded Steph well, and Steph is always on the move, out there running around, coming off screens and just looking to shoot the ball. That’s what he does.” Well, there’s one little detail that Lillard left out, one that Steph Curry was too happy to provide: “It worked out perfectly tonight: He played well and we won.” Shaun Powell has covered the NBA for more than 25 years. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here, and 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 NewsMay 17th, 2019

Team Pacquiao scores victory in 2019 Philippine elections

Team Pacquiao scores victory in 2019 Philippine elections Rappler Those close to the fighting senator have found success, with family and friends winning government posts......»»

Category: newsSource:  manilanewsRelated NewsMay 17th, 2019

Column- Heavyweights step up, just not against each other - Inquirer Sports

Tyson Fury, the big British heavyweight who breaks into song at the most unexpected moments and would be fun to meet for a beer, will be fighting next month. So will his countryman, Anthony Joshua, wh.....»»

Category: newsSource:  philippinetimesRelated NewsMay 15th, 2019

ONE Championship: Heading into cage return, Geje Eustaquio’s focus is on getting better

Former ONE Flyweight World Champion Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio has a great opportunity to get back on track this coming Friday, May 17th at ONE: Enter The Dragon in Singapore.   In his first match since dropping the title to Adriano Moraes in Manila back in September, the former flyweight king makes his return against South Korean Kyu Sung Kim.   And while Eustaquio’s journey back to the title could begin with a win against Kim, the Team Lakay star says that his only focus is on getting better.   “For now, ang nasa isip ko is to get better and better, and of course to implement yung gameplan na ginawa namin ni Coach Mark [Sangiao] and the rest of the team sa upcoming May 17,” Eustaquio told ABS-CBN Sports. “Yun lang muna ang nasa attention ko as of now.”   [RELATED: Geje Eustaquio hungry and motivated in comeback, says head coach]   Against the taller and younger Kim, Eustaquio faces a competitor who is a proven finisher, with seven of his nine wins coming via stoppage, five coming via KO or TKO.   Eustaquio, a gifted striker in his own right, welcomes the challenge that the South Korean possesses.   “Based sa mga nakita namin na competition niya, he’s more of a striker, most of his wins are via punches, so sa tingin ko it’s going to be a good fight.”   And while he’s more than willing to stand and trade with Kyu, Eustaquio isn’t afraid to take whatever opportunities that fight may present.   “Sa akin, I believe we have the best, world class striking in Team Lakay, we can do that, but of course, this is mixed martial arts, if you have the opportunity, you have to take it.” Eustaquio stated. “Sometimes, you have to focus on the game plan, but if you have the opportunity, why not take it? Capitalize on the opportunity and take the chance.”   Former ONE Flyweight World Champion Geje "Gravity" Eustaquio, who will be fighting on May 17th at ONE #EnterTheDragon in Singapore, sparring with Brave CF bantamweight Jeremy Pacatiw | @abscbnsports pic.twitter.com/RybPltvsuj — Santino Honasan???? (@honasantino) May 11, 2019   For the past few years, Eustaquio has enjoyed seeing his name on the marquee of ONE Championship cards, headlining his last four events all over Asia.   This time around, the 30-year old finds himself on the middle of the card, but maintains that this isn’t much of an issue to him.   After all, he’s been here before, he says.   “Sa akin, actually it doesn’t matter. It’s just another day in the office. I’ve been there for many times, it’s just another day in the office.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 15th, 2019

Curry brother rivalry adds spice to NBA Western Conference finals

Two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Stephen Curry, 31, will be playing in a fifth straight conference final, while Seth will be fighting for an NBA Finals berth for the first time. #NBA.....»»

Category: newsSource:  tempoRelated NewsMay 14th, 2019

UP s Joe Gomez De Liaño defeats AU s Araña in King of the Hardcourt

Move over Javi and Juan Gomez De Liaño. Older brother Joe, who is currently playing for the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons Team B, won his inaugural match of the Hanes One-On-One King of the Hardcourt......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsMay 14th, 2019

Rafael Nadal loses to Stefanos Tsitsipas in Madrid as clay slump continues - Inquirer Sports

MADRID For the third straight time this season, Rafael Nadal wont be fighting for a title on his favorite surface. Nadals slump on clay continued on Saturday at the Madrid Open with a third consecuti.....»»

Category: newsSource:  philippinetimesRelated NewsMay 13th, 2019

FILOIL: UP transferee Rivero just made La Salle feel his presence at both ends

Ricci Rivero found himself and the University of the Philippines, his new team, down by as much as 14 points to De La Salle University, his old team, Sunday at Filoil Flying V Centre. It was at that point, however, that he dropped seven points in the last five minutes of regulation to will the Fighting Maroons back into the game. The last two of those points came after he fished a foul from Justine Baltazar and then converted the couple of charities. At the other end, he then snuffed out a triple try by Andrei Caracut, making sure the two teams needed overtime to settle the score. In all, the Green Archers were 32.9 seconds away from a win only to fall victim to Rivero's game-changing plays at both ends. Asked if he was inspired to play against his old team, though, State U's prized transferee downplayed whatever personal feelings he had on the match-up. "Nothing really special naman. Like what Coach Bo [Perasol] said, it's not about winning against La Salle or winning against any other team," he said. He then continued, "We're playing basketball here so it's about winning each and every game." Whatever it is, at the end of the day, it was the euro-stepping swingman who, together with Javi Gomez de Liano, lifted UP to a triumph over La Salle as he dropped 10 of his game-high 28 points in the extra session. Rivero made it a point to say, though, that even after this win, they are far from their goal. As he put it, "Not just beating this specific team or whatever makes you a good team. What makes you a good team is, first, staying together, trusting each other." He then continued, "Next is the willingness to win. It's not just beating this specific team." --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 12th, 2019

Fast guide: Pro-worker senatorial bets

The labor groups such as the TUCP and the KMU, FFW and other groups that arose from differences in the labor movement are uniting on issues like fighting contractualization and voting for senatoriables who support it. The post Fast guide: Pro-worker senatorial bets appeared first on Bulatlat......»»

Category: newsSource:  bulatlatRelated NewsMay 10th, 2019

Against backdrop of controversy, Red Sox honored by Trump

By Jonathan Lemire, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump honored the World Series champion Boston Red Sox — well, some of them — at the White House on Thursday, but made no mention of the controversy that shadowed the visit. The team's manager, Alex Cora, did not attend the ceremony after citing his frustration with the administration's efforts to help his native Puerto Rico recover from a devastating hurricane. And nearly a dozen members of the team, all players of color, skipped the opportunity to shake Trump's hand. Meanwhile, every white player on the team — as well as outfielder J.D. Martinez, who is of Cuban descent — attended. The Red Sox repeatedly denied that there was any sort of racial divide caused by the White House visit, which has been transformed from moment of celebratory ritual to hyper-politicized event under Trump. And there was no sign of discord during the rained-upon ceremony on the White House South Lawn. The U.S. Marine Corps band played versions of "Dirty Water" and "Sweet Caroline," two unofficial Red Sox anthems. A derogatory shout about the Red Sox rival, the New Yankees, was heard. Trump was presented with a Red Sox jersey with No. 18 on the back. The day was not without mishaps: The White House first incorrectly labeled the team as the "Red Socks" on its website and then later, in an email, dubbed them the champions of something called the "World Cup Series." But Trump himself stuck to the correct script, honoring the team's dominant run to the title. "Frankly, they were unstoppable. I watched," said Trump, who noted that the squad had now won more World Series titles than any other franchise this century. He laughed when Martinez teased him for being a Yankees fan. The president was accompanied by two of the team's stars, Martinez and pitcher Chris Sale, from the Oval Office and joined the rest of the team assembled under the South Portico. The team's third base coach, Carlos Febles, who is from the Dominican Republic, stood two rows behind the president. And dozens of administration officials and members of government, many of whom hail from the six New England states, stood on the lawn to cheer. Tom Werner, the team's chairman, downplayed the no-shows, saying that it was each player's personal decision whether to attend. "We don't see it as a racial divide," he said after the team received a post-ceremony tour of the Lincoln Bedroom. "I think, to the extent that we can, baseball is apolitical." A championship team's coach rarely, if ever, misses the White House visit, a tradition that began in earnest in 1924 when then-President Calvin Coolidge invited the Washington Senators. Cora had considered attending Thursday's White House event to call attention to the plight of those in Puerto Rico, where Hurricane Maria is estimated to have caused nearly 3,000 deaths. But in the end, he opted not to go. "Unfortunately, we are still struggling, still fighting," Cora said in a statement. "Some people still lack basic necessities, others remain without electricity and many homes and schools are in pretty bad shape almost a year and a half after Hurricane Maria struck. I've used my voice on many occasions so that Puerto Ricans are not forgotten, and my absence is no different. As such, at this moment, I don't feel comfortable celebrating in the White House." Before the visit, Trump defended his stance on Puerto Rico, falsely asserting once again that the territory received $91 billion in hurricane relief money, which he claimed was "the largest amount of money ever given to any state." In fact, Congress has allocated Puerto Rico just a fraction of that figure. The White House has said Trump's $91 billion estimate includes about $50 billion in speculated future disaster disbursements that could span decades, along with $41 billion already approved. Actual aid to Puerto Rico has flowed more slowly from federal coffers, with about $11 billion given so far. Hurricane Katrina in 2005 cost the U.S government more than $120 billion — the bulk of it going to Louisiana. Trump nonetheless told reporters, "the people of Puerto Rico should really like President Trump." Those around the Red Sox locker room stressed that a player's decision to attend was a personal choice and not, in many cases, political. "Politically, it didn't matter who was in the White House. If I have an opportunity to go to the White House and meet the president, I'm going to go," relief pitcher Heath Hembree said Wednesday. "Nobody tried to persuade me. They have their reasons why not to go." For some players, it may be their only chance for a White House invite. It also reflects a larger trend across baseball: A number of players hail from Trump-friendly states like Texas and Florida, while the sport has also seen a surge in Latino players and a decline in African Americans. Having also won World Series titles in 2004, 2007 and 2013, the Red Sox — who also visited wounded veterans at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Thursday — have been honored at the White House under both Republican and Democratic presidents. But the events have taken on sharp political overtones since Trump took office. When the New England Patriots visited in 2017, Trump's first year in office, far fewer players attended than when the franchise won a title under President Barack Obama. After several players on the Philadelphia Eagles and Golden State Warriors publicly declared that they would skip White House ceremonies, Trump disinvited the teams. Trump has also instituted a new tradition for the ceremonies, scrapping gourmet meals in favor of offering plates of fast food to the athletes. The Red Sox were not at the White House for a meal, Werner said. Moreover, the optics of the Red Sox visit are certain to receive additional scrutiny due to the history of racially charged moments for both the team and the city it calls home. The Red Sox, infamously, held a failed tryout for Jackie Robinson before he broke the sport's color barrier. They were the last team in the major leagues to integrate. And an Elks Club in the team's former spring training home of Winter Haven, Florida, invited only white players to events, a practice that stopped only in the 1980s, when black players complained ___ Associated Press writers Kevin Freking in Washington, Jimmy Golen in Boston and David Ginsburg in Baltimore contributed to this report......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 10th, 2019

Che’lu shuts down AMA in PBA D-League

CHE'LU Bar and Grill hammered AMA Online Education en route to the 115-77 win Thursday in the 2019 PBA D-League at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig. The Revellers' balanced attack improved their record to 5-3 in the Aspirants Group, while also eliminating the Titans, carrying a 2-5 card, in the process. Che'Lu kickstarted the game with a 10-0 spurt which set the tone for the mugging that was about to happen as the Revellers held a lead as much as 44 late. Stephen Siruma led the five Revellers who got to double-digits with his 13 points and five assists. JayR Taganas added a double-double with his 12 points, 10 rebounds, and five assists, while Rey Suerte, Mark Bringas, and Jhaps Bautista all scored 11. "Yun din ang gusto namin sa team, fighting team. Hindi man kami kasing beterano nung last season, we still need our players to play their role," said coach Stevenson Tiu. Joshua Munzon paced the Titans in the losing effort with 26 points, four rebounds, and two assists.   The Scores: CHE'LU 115 -- Siruma 13, Taganas 12, Suerte 11, Bautista 11, Bringas 11, Batino 9, Collado 9, Viernes 8, P. Manalang 8, Ng 7, Gabo 5, Dagangon 5, Dumapig 4, Chua 2. AMA 77 -- Munzon 26, Parcero 11, Rike 8, Estibar 7, Jocson 7, Asuncion 6, Paras 4, Dela Rosa 4, Alina 2, Alao 2, Catequista 0, Sabile 0. Quarters: 31-13, 62-31, 95-62, 115-77......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 9th, 2019

Family Feud: Ateneo s Gayoso faces uncle, DLSU s Ocampo in UAAP 81 Football Finals

More than just a Finals matchup between collegiate rivals, the upcoming Ateneo versus De La Salle pairing in the UAAP Season 81 Men's Football Finals will be a family event for Ateneo star striker Jarvey Gayoso and DLSU head coach Alvin Ocampo.  As we've featured before, Gayoso and Ocampo are nephew and uncle.  Now, for the first time in their UAAP careers, the two will meet each other in the season's biggest match. It's also going to be the first time in 13 years that Ateneo and La Salle meet in the Finals.  "I’ve always dreamed of it, we’ve never had it before, we’ve never had an Ateneo-La Salle Finals," shared Gayoso, who was the hero in Ateneo's Finals-clinching win over Far Eastern University in the Final Four. "It being the Finals, I expect a crazy crowd, and the game, of course, we all know, especially us athletes, when it comes to Ateneo-La Salle, nobody is going to give less than a hundred percent, everyone’s going to keep fighting, it’s all about pride eh." As for getting to face his Tito Alvin in the Finals, Gayoso admitted that it was something he and the rest of the family hoped for.  "We all wanted the Ateneo-La Salle game. We were cheering for each other," Gayoso said. "I really wanted to go against La Salle in the Finals, and I’m pretty sure Tito Alvin wanted me to flourish here in this game, so it was a nice setting, it’s a nice game to expect."  Ocampo, who said that he has always made it a point to comment on Jarvey's performances, says that for this instance, he will be keeping his comments to himself for at least after the Finals. "Hindi muna kami mag-papansinan for the whole week," Ocampo said, jokingly. "After na. Hindi muna ako magco-comment sa laro niya ngayon."  Ocampo and his Green Archers upset and dethroned defending champions University of the Philippines in their Final Four matchup.  Ateneo and De La Salle battle for the UAAP Season 81 Men's Football Championship on Thursday, May 16th at 4:30 PM. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 9th, 2019

Strikers and Submission Specialists headline ONE Championship in May

A pair of explosive Muay Thai world title fights takes to the grand arena of ONE Championship this Friday (May 10) when Muay Thai superstars Nong-O Gaiyanghadao and Petchdam Petchyindee Academy take on separate foes in ONE Championship’s WARRIORS OF LIGHT card that will air LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A, S+A HD, and iWant Sports starting at 9:30 pm. The two Thai superstars will be fighting for the ONE Muay Thai Bantamweight World Championship and ONE Flyweight Kickboxing World Championship belts respectively. Nong-O will be competing against Japanese warrior Hiroaki Suzuki while Petchdam faces Elias Mahmoudi of Algeria. The largest fight promotions outfit in Asia also prepared an explosive MMA card for May 17, that will be ONE Lightweight World Champion Shinya Aoki’s first defense against Singapore’s submission artist, Christian Lee, in ONE: ENTER THE DRAGON which will also air LIVE on S+A, S+A HD, and iWant Sports at 8:30 pm.   Aside from the striking masters, Pinoy MMA fans can also look forward to the return of Geje “Gravity” Eustaquio to the cage, months after his defeat from Adriano Moraes, in the ONE Flyweight World Grand Prix against Korean Kim Kyu Sung. Former UFC fighter Sage Northcutt will also make his ONE Championship debut against Brazilian mixed martial artist Cosmo Alexandre. Fight fans will be able to witness explosive kickboxing and Muay Thai masterclasses from the likes of Italian stallion Giorgio Petrosyan, against Petchmorakot and Dutch striking master Nieky Holzken versus compatriot Regian Eersel, in the successive fightcards. The names of the fighters lined up may be new to Filipino fight fans’ ears with the exception of Eustaquio and Aoki, who put to sleep Filipino MMA hero Eduard Folayang in Japan, and Lee. But the competing Muay Thai and kickboxing masters have already been introducing themselves via the ONE Super Series that focuses on the art of striking with powerful roundhouse kicks, dangerous elbows, as well as flashy spin attacks.   Don’t miss the two explosive ONE Championship fightcards airing on S+A, S+A HD, and streaming LIVE on iWant Sports starting with ONE: WARRIORS OF LIGHT this Friday (May 10) at 9:30 pm. ONE: ENTER THE DRAGON will air on May 17 LIVE on S+A and S+A HD, with livestreaming on iWant, at 8:30 pm.   For more stories and news on Aisa’s largest fight promotions company, follow @ABSCBNSports on Twitter and Facebook or visit sports.abs-cbn.com. For updates, follow @ABSCBNPR on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram or visit www.abscbnpr.com......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 9th, 2019

Sydney Enriquez, Eric Tangub banner PPS field

Fancied Sydney Enriquez and Eric Tangub banner more than 200 entries fighting it out in nine age-group divisions, each eyeing top honors and ranking points in the PPS-PEPP Oroquieta national age-group tennis tournament which got going yesterday in Misamis Occidental......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsMay 8th, 2019

Nuggets put Blazers on the ropes with series-shifting Game 5 rout

By Sekou Smith, NBA.com DENVER — Two points separated the Denver Nuggets and Portland Trail Blazers after the first four, grueling games of these Western Conference semifinals. They piled up the same number of three-pointers and free throws as well. The games were that good, that tight, and the difference between the two teams was negligible at best. Then Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time) happened. Paul Millsap happened. Nikola Jokic happened. Jamal Murray happened. The manifestation of a Nuggets team that’s been dancing with a destiny that leads to the Western Conference finals, finally happened. Their 124-98 rout of the Trail Blazers in Game 5 at Pepsi Center was the sort of declaration Nuggets coach Michael Malone has been predicting for his team since they were locked into a back-and-forth struggle with the San Antonio Spurs in the first round. [Watch the Playoffs on NBA League Pass for 30% less with this limited time offer! Select Annual package and use code SAVE30 at checkout to redeem] They evened the series Sunday (Monday, PHL time) in Portland, showing mettle beyond their years by snapping the Trail Blazers’ 12-game home winning streak that dated back to the regular season, with an inspired effort to stave off the certain doom of a 3-1 deficit. Tuesday night’s (Wednesday, PHL time) salvo was a seismic shift in the opposite direction. The Nuggets’ biggest lead was 31 points and their intentions were plain for everyone to see. Millsap roasted the Blazers for 24 points and eight rebounds, dominating while being featured more and executing his considerable advantage in small-ball situations. “The best thing about Paul Millsap is he’s true to himself, he never tries to be something he’s not,” Malone said. “He’s not a rah-rah guy, he’s not a guy that’s going to be screaming and yelling. But I think his calm demeanor has an effect on our group. Young team going through all of this for the first time and when you can look to a four-time All-Star with 90 playoff games under his belt, that’s reassuring. He’s kind of the calm for our team and I think that has a tremendous impact on all of our young players.” Two in particular during this postseason and this series, to be sure. Jokic led the way with 25 points, 19 rebounds and six assists before fouling out late, leaving little doubt as to who deserves to wear the crown as the best big man in the league right now. Murray was splendid again, with 18 points and nine assists, while his backcourt mate Gary Harris chipped in with 16 points and six rebounds. Will Barton and Malik Beasley scored 10 points each off the bench, leading a 33-point bench scoring effort that will need to travel back to Portland for Thursday’s (Friday, PHL time) Game 6 if the Nuggets have any chance of winning three straight and ending this series in six games. “We know going to Portland for Game 6 is going to be really tough,” Malone said, referencing his team’s Game 6 struggles in the first round. “Game 6 in San Antonio, we did not come ready to play, mentally or physically. I hope that we have a much different mindset going in to Portland for Game 6.” The Blazers have some serious tweaking to do, in a short amount of time, as well. Their starters didn’t even play in the fourth quarter, Terry Stotts acknowledging that the 30-point hole his team was fighting out of might have been too large, given the circumstances. And the need to preserve the energy of Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum and the crew for what sets up as their biggest game of the season was obvious. “At this point, it’s one game at a time facing elimination,” Lillard said. “We know that we’re more than capable of getting it done in the next game. We don’t feel like we’ve played our best basketball yet, and with our back against the wall, we don’t really have a choice. Our mindset is to just get to the next one, take care of home and make it back here.” Stotts has adjustments to make before Thursday night (Friday, PHL time) as well, after the Nuggets bludgeoned his team in the paint for a 66-44 scoring advantage, while also outrebounding them 62-44. The decision to switch Enes Kanter’s primary defensive assignment from Jokic to Millsap Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time), with Al-Farouq Aminu being tasked to try and contain the much bigger Jokic, backfired as Millsap went to work immediately on Kanter. “They just played harder than us,” Kanter said. “I think that was probably … even the coach said, probably this was our worst basketball the last six weeks. Shots didn’t fall in, on defense we weren’t really communicating with each other, we didn’t really trust each other. We’ve just got to learn from this and just go home and take care of home, because right now, that’s the most important game of the year.” The atmosphere Thursday night (Friday, PHL time) at Moda Center promises to be electric. The Blazers have long enjoyed one of the best home atmospheres in the league. But will it serve as the advantage it has in the past when the Nuggets are fresh off two straight huge wins in this series, the first on that floor? “We have two must-wins,” Stotts said. “Somebody was going to have a must-win after tonight and it’s us. So we have two must-wins ahead of us.” That four-overtime loss in Game 3 Friday night (Saturday, PHL time) could have been the emotional breaking point for the Nuggets. It wasn’t. A school shooting Tuesday morning (late Tuesday, PHL time) in a Denver suburb where Malone lives with his wife and daughters rattled the coach and an entire community. That sort of life-altering event could easily have sidetracked Malone and his team. They persevered. The Nuggets were locked in from the start. When it became clear that the Blazers weren’t going to be able to keep up the pace, they kept pushing until the final buzzer. They understand the opportunity staring them in the face; a conference finals date with the two-time reigning champion Golden State Warriors or Houston Rockets, who are tied 2-2 heading into Game 5 Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) at Oracle Arena. It’s a wild shift for a team that failed to play its way into the playoffs last year on the final night of the regular season, only to rebound and earn the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference playoff chase this season. If the atmosphere for Game 4 or even Game 5 seemed overwhelming, Thursday night (Friday, PHL time) promises to be otherworldly for both of these teams that were previously separated by so little. Sekou Smith is a veteran NBA reporter and NBA TV analyst. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and 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 NewsMay 8th, 2019

Justin Arana finds a home with Arellano Chiefs

In his Filoil Flying V Preseason Cup debut with Arellano, Arana was a pillar of strength for first year head coach Cholo Martin. The 6’5” Arana scored a team high 16 points and grabbed 17 rebounds while adding one assist against the University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons who prevailed, 78-69......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsMay 8th, 2019

Enriquez, Tangub eye top finish in PPS Oroquieta

Fancied Sydney Enriquez and Eric Tangub banner more than 200 entries fighting it out in nine age group divisions, each shooting top honors and ranking points in the PPS-PEPP Oroquieta national age-group tennis tournament,.....»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsMay 8th, 2019

Manzo leads UP to mighty rebound in Filoil Preseason

The University of the Philippines got just what it needed to bounce back in the 2019 Filoil Flying V Preseason Tournament, making quick work of rebuilding Arellano University, 78-69, Tuesday at Filoil Flying V Centre. Reigning and defending MVP Bright Akhuetie didn't suit up this time around and Gomez de Liano brothers Javi and Juan as well as Jaydee Tungcab missed their second straight games, but that didn't matter as the Fighting Maroons drew contributions from returning Jun Manzo and newbies Ricci Rivero and Kobe Paras to rise to an even 1-1 standing. Manzo, who was sidelined during their loss to San Beda University two days ago, spearheaded the offensive with 19 points while prized transferees Rivero and Paras contributed 19 and 16 markers, respectively. Those three keyed State U's strong start and had all the answers even as the Chiefs kept coming until the final buzzer. For Arellano, Justin Arana, a transferee from UST, led the effort with 16 points. Ace guard Kent Salado, now healthy after an ACL injury, had 10 points to his name. BOX SCORES UP 78 -- Manzo 19, Rivero 19, Paras 16, Murell 8, Webb 5, Spencer 4, Gob 4, Prado 3, Longa 0, Gozum 0. ARELLANO 69 -- Arana 16, Bayla 14, Alcoriza 14, Salado 10, Segura 6, Concepcion 4, Sablan 3, Santos 2, Espiritu 0, Gayosa 0. QUARTER SCORES: 25-18, 38-35, 59-56, 78-69. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 7th, 2019

Rockets physicality puts vaunted Warriors on the defensive

By Shaun Powell, NBA.com HOUSTON — This Western Conference semifinal series is tied at 2-2. Each game has been decided by six points or less. Kevin Durant and Steph Curry, perhaps the best shooters in the NBA and among the greatest all-time, each had clean looks at 3-pointers in the final seconds Monday (Tuesday, PHL time) for the Warriors and missed a chance to send Game 4 into overtime. The Rockets won, 112-108. Yes, this is now closer than identical twins and possibly headed to the same finish of a year ago, when the Warriors took out Houston in seven games during the conference finals. And if you look under the hood and examine the parts, you’ll see that in the moments of truth over the last two games that Houston won and created this deadlock. The Rockets were the aggressor, the bully, the chance-taker and ultimately more clutch than the champs. They’re beating the Warriors up inside and out. [Watch the Playoffs on NBA League Pass for 30% less with this limited time offer! Select Annual package and use code SAVE30 at checkout to redeem] This doesn’t mean they’ll be the better team at the finish line, whether in six games or seven. But right now, they’ve made this contest closer than most imagined and given themselves a shot in what is now a best-two-out-of-three. “It’s a dogfight, and every possession matters,” said Chris Paul. The Rockets claimed victory Monday (Tuesday, PHL time) because James Harden was aces again, scoring 38 points and becoming more efficient – though, to the horror of the Warriors, he was no longer alone. Suddenly, Harden is getting ample help, and the more his supporting cast grows in confidence, the bigger the task it’ll be for the Warriors to finish the job. Here’s the tale of the tape: The Rockets are punching Golden State in the gut, with forward PJ Tucker delivering the body blows. Tucker is just 6'6", yet brings the temperament of a honey badger in a bad mood when it comes to grabbing rebounds. For the second straight game, Tucker snagged double-figures and been especially menacing on the offensive end; he’s going for seconds and sometimes thirds in heavy traffic and giving Houston additional chances at buckets. It’s not just ordinary rebounds he’s getting, but the most important ones. That hunger has a psychological effect as well, breaking the spirits of the Warriors while rousting the passion in his teammates. The sight of Tucker out-fighting Draymond Green for loose balls and missed shots is an emotional boost and keeps possessions alive. “I’m pleased people get a chance to see Tuck,” said Paul. “Everybody sees players in commercials and all that, but they don’t get a chance to see someone play defense and go after rebounds like him. That energy fuels everyone else. That’s basketball.” Houston has out-rebounded the Warriors in its two straight wins and Green says that can’t continue. “We have to change our mindset,” he said, “and that begins with me. That’s my department. They’re slapping us. It’s an easy correction, and if we correct it we’ll be fine.” Maybe the more disturbing aspect of this series is how the Warriors are also getting out-splashed. It’s not terribly surprising to see the Rockets dropping more three-pointers; after all, they take more than anyone in basketball. Yet, the Warriors just aren’t efficient and that’s especially the case with Curry and Klay Thompson. Harden has made just two fewer three-pointers than Curry and Thompson combined. While Curry seemed to break free of his semi-slump Monday (Tuesday, PHL time) with 30 points, his highest single-game point total of the series, he missed 10 of his 14 shots from deep. And Thompson is trapped in a thicker fog right now; he missed 5-of-6 from deep and delivered a weak 11 points and really hasn’t stepped forward for Golden State all series. The shot selection for Curry and Thompson has appeared wicked and surprisingly reckless at times, especially in the fourth quarter. “I felt we were in a rush a lot tonight with our shots,” said Kerr. “I don’t think we got great shots for much of the night. When you’re not searching for great shots, you’re not going to shoot that well.” With only Durant managing to look efficient from beyond the arc, the Warriors are getting lapped. In the last three games, or once Harden’s poked eye improved, the Rockets have made 18 more three-pointers than Golden State. “Our mentality changed after Game 2,” said Harden. “We’re not going to let up. We’re going to keep coming at you.” There are reasons the Warriors shouldn’t be in a state of panic. The next game is at Oracle Arena. And the two they just lost at Toyota Center they could’ve been won had they made plays at the end. Game 3 went into overtime and Curry missed an uncontested layup in the final 90 seconds of that tight game. And the Warriors had those pair of looks by Curry and Durant in Game 4, the sight of which sent chills through the Rockets. “I thought it was going into overtime,” said Austin Rivers. “One hundred percent. KD got one and I’m like, ‘C’mon man.’ And then Steph got one. We are fortunate.” Paul added: “Going back to the Bay, they’re probably not going to miss those shots.” Besides, Houston was qualified to be the most difficult out for the Warriors to win a third straight title, or at least reach the NBA Finals. After all, the Rockets have Harden and Paul, and their ability to shoot three's means they can seldom be counted out of games even if they’re trailing. A furious rally is always a moment away. Besides, aside from Trevor Ariza, this is virtually the same team that took Golden State to the seven-game limit last year and had to play the final two games without Paul, who had a hamstring pull. “I thought they were great,” said Kerr. “They did what they had to do, win their two home games.” But there wasn’t the scent of concern coming from the Warriors. Perhaps it’s the pride of a team still believing it’s heads and shoulders above the league, or a stern belief that whatever advantages Houston had over the last two games will be snuffed. Durant remains playing at an epic level and the basketball logic says Curry, and perhaps Thompson, will eventually snap out of it, not because the Rockets’ defense will weaken, but because Curry and Thompson have, you know, a track record of excellence. “We know what we have to do,” Kerr said bravely. Perhaps. But for the second time in as many years, the Rockets have the Warriors’ full attention, and Golden State must be near-perfect to prevent from being pushed to the ledge. “What I like is how everybody does their job,” said Tucker. “That makes us ‘us.’ We’re tough. We’re that kind of team.” If the Warriors didn’t know it before, they know that now. Shaun Powell has covered the NBA for more than 25 years. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here, and 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 NewsMay 7th, 2019

Joshua at home in Garden despite never fighting there

By Barry Wilner, Associated Press NEW YORK (AP) — On his way to his debut at Madison Square Garden, heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua has hit a detour. His planned opponent failed several drug tests. Unfazed by the switch from Jarrrell Miller to Andy Ruiz Jr., Joshua strode into an empty Garden on Monday and was right at home. The holder of four heavyweight belts will face Ruiz on June 1 in Joshua's first U.S. appearance. The fight is more about his making a mark in this country than his opponent. Miller had a penchant for mouthing off, his 23-0-1 record built against boxers with little to no chance of entering the ring for a title bout. Replacement Ruiz (32-1, 21 KOs) has a slightly better resume and even a championship bout on it: Ruiz's only loss was to then-WBO champ Joseph Parker in 2016. "I wanted to beat down Miller, beat him down badly," Joshua said, recalling some seriously off-color trash talking from the New Yorker who failed three drug tests. "Ruiz I want to beat down, but I have respect for him." Even more so, Joshua noted, is his respect for the arena that some call America's boxing mecca. "I know the history that has been here and the sports that have been here," he said. "When I come in here to fight June 1, it will be very special." Joshua then joked with a colleague about making a name for himself in the United States. He laughed when told that New Yorkers on the street, even sports fans, rarely know of Joshua when asked. So what will it take for Americans to become as accustomed to the undefeated Brit as they were to, say, Mike Tyson in his day? "America is so vast," Joshua said. "It's beyond me in my wildest dreams. Maybe to get on YouTube and to go viral? "Back in the day, the heavyweight champion was a global icon. Everybody knew who it was and where (he was from). Now, there are so many 'superstars,' and it's harder to penetrate that." Knocking out Ruiz couldn't hurt. Joshua has won all 22 bouts, 21 by knockout. He's held at least one title since 2016, and the only belt not in his collection belongs to Alabaman Deontay Wilder — who also isn't celebrated nearly the way a Tyson was during his reign. Joshua-Wilder could be on the radar, even though Joshua has a contract with DAZN, the streaming service that will broadcast the Ruiz fight, while Wilder has steered clear of DAZN so far. Wilder puts his WBC crown on the line on May 18 against Dominic Breazeale in Brooklyn. "I am ready for Wilder, I've been ready for Wilder," Joshua said. "I've done a good job maintaining my place and he is the guy I want. He has a lot to live up to. I've got confidence flowing now. I am confident I will beat Ruiz and he is confident he will beat Breazeale. We can be confident in planning ahead." Joshua would want that fight to be late this year and back home, where he can sell out football stadiums. Ruiz might be the next step — and the first in the States — but Wilder would be the next leap. "We have a five-to-10-year plan," he said. "It's not about being famous today but how I am regarded in the next five to 10 years. We'll work hard with the platform we have to do positive things.".....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 7th, 2019