Advertisements


PBA: Bolick took Stanley trade hard: “Umiyak pa nga ako”

Stanley Pringle’s blockbuster trade from Northport to Ginebra Tuesday got everyone shocked that’s for sure. However, it seems like Northport rookie Robert Bolick took the trade the hardest. Bolick, the Batang Pier’s no. 3 overall pick from last year’s Draft, has been very vocal about his relationship with Pringle. The rookie really relished the opportunity to be teammates with one of the best point guards in this region. After that relationship lasted for pretty much just one conference, Bolick really felt the gravity of the situation. It’s as if someone spoiled him the ending to a movie that he waited to watch for so long. “Actually pinatay ko cellphone ko di ko matanggap, umiyak pa nga ako,” Bolick said, going back to the time he found out about the trade. “It’s because gusto ko rin maging selfish, gusto ko pa siyang makasama nang matagal kasi Stanley’s one of the best players na nakasama kong makalaro in my position,” he added. While Bolick welcomes the opportunity to play with Sol Mercado, Kevin Ferrer, and Jervy Cruz, the rookie admits that he’ll miss seeing Pringle in Batang Pier practice. However, just because they’re no longer teammates doesn’t mean that Bolick can no longer stop learning from Stanley. “We trust the management, we trust our coaches and everything. Move on. But again, gusto ko pa rin pagdating sa practice nandoon siya,” Bolick said of Pringle. “Sabi niya, ‘Always remember na I’m always here, the phone is always open,’ gumaganun siya so may nararamdaman na ako [na emotions],” Bolick added.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnJun 19th, 2019

PBA: No fear for Wright as they challenge loaded Gin Kings: 'They have to guard us too'

Getting that first winning streak for the 2019 PBA Commissioner's Cup has been a challenge for Phoenix. At 3-4, the Fuel Masters are having a hard time getting any sort of momentum going. Despite coming off a big win against top-ranked Northport Wednesday, the challenge of getting a winning run won't get any easier for Phoenix as they take on defending champion Ginebra Friday. The Gin Kings are tough enough but they reloaded last week with a blockbuster trade which makes things all the more difficult for the Fuel Masters. "Yeah I heard they traded for some guy, he’s pretty good," Phoenix guard Matthew Wright said on the Gin Kings that now have Stanley Pringle. "Ginebra is Ginebra, you’re gonna have to keep the crowd quiet as much as possible and you’re gonna have to play straight up defense," he added. Now sporting a Brownlee-Pringle duo, Ginebra has become even more dynamic. Wright knows that but he also knows that he and his Fuel Masters are a problem as well. "They’re a big squad now and with Stanley, they’re a lot more explosive and dynamic. We also have to worry about Brownlee as well," Wright said.  "We have our work cut out for us but they have to guard us too," he added   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 27th, 2019

Bolick admits crying after learning of Pringle trade

MANILA, Philippines – Robert Bolick has developed a strong bond with Stanley Pringle that he cried upon learning that NorthPort traded his mentor and teammate to Barangay Ginebra.  The Batang Pier bid farewell to Pringle, who was drafted first overall by the team in 2014, after shipping him to the Gin Kings in ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsJun 20th, 2019

Harden and Westbrook back together to chase title in Houston

By Kristie Rieken, Associated Press HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden and Russell Westbrook are thrilled to be reunited in Houston and can’t wait to prove they will work just fine together. And Harden knows the rest of the team is excited about the addition of the eight-time All-Star as well. “I enjoy it but I know that everybody else enjoys it, too,” he said. “They get more shot opportunities ... with another guy that gets to the rim and draws so much attention to create opportunities for his teammates. Obviously he plays at a different pace than I do. He plays way faster than I do but we are both trying to accomplish the same thing, making sure our teammates get involved and we share the wealth.” Westbrook joined the Rockets this summer in a stunning trade that sent the longtime face of the Oklahoma City Thunder to Houston in exchange for Chris Paul. The deal brought Harden and Westbrook back together after the guards spent three seasons together with the Thunder at the start of Harden’s career. It was a trade that came with questions about how two players used to handling the ball will be able to work together. Both brushed off the concerns, and insist they’ll make it work to chase an NBA championship in a conference loaded with powerhouse teams. “I impact the game in so many different ways and I’ve proven that for many years and that’s why I’m not worried,” Westbrook said. “I don’t have to have the ball to impact the game. I don’t have to score. I can defend. I can rebound. I can pass. I can lead.” Westbrook, the 2017 MVP who is entering his 12th season, said statistics don’t matter to him. “My main goal and main focus is to win,” he said. “I can go in a game and be scoreless and if we win that’s the best thing that ever happened and that’s all I care about and all I’ve always cared about.” Harden, who led the NBA in scoring last season for the second straight year by averaging 36.1 points, said he welcomes having another player on the team who can lessen his load a bit. And while Harden believes that Westbrook will help the Rockets get to the next level, he’s comfortable with the fact that the team’s success or failure will always be linked to his performance. “If we don’t win I’ll take all the blame for it,” he said. “It comes with it. That’s why we have to go out there and win. That’s why we work extremely hard in the offseason to bring players in and bring whatever is necessary in to give ourselves that chance to win. I know what’s at stake.” The Rockets open the season Oct. 24 (Oct. 25, PHL time) against Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks. CHINA RELATIONS The Rockets are eager to move on from the distraction caused by a since-deleted tweet by general manager Daryl Morey in support of anti-government protesters in Hong Kong that angered China and many fans. The Rockets were in Hawaii on Oct. 4 (Oct. 5, PHL time) to play a preseason game against the Los Angeles Clippers on the first leg of a trip that included two games in Japan when Morey tweeted an image that said: “Fight For Freedom. Stand With Hong Kong.” His tweet was in reference to pro-democracy demonstrations in the semiautonomous Chinese territory that has been mired in escalating violence between protesters and law enforcement. Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta quickly rebuked his GM with a tweet saying that Morey does not speak for the team, but the damage was done. The Chinese Basketball Association, headed by former Rockets star Yao Ming, suspended its ties to the Rockets over the tweet. Events in China promoting a Lakers-Nets series were canceled, NBA media partner Tencent said it was evaluating its plans to cover the league and some Chinese corporations have suspended relationships with the NBA. HOUSE PARTY The Rockets signed G/F Danuel House to a three-year, $11.1 million contract this summer after the 26-year-old split time between Houston and the G-League last season. Coach Mike D’Antoni is glad he’ll have House in Houston all season this year after he averaged 9.4 points in 39 games last year. “Danuel House excites me,” D’Antoni said. “He should have a big year.” HEY OLD FRIEND Power forward Ryan Anderson is back with the Rockets after signing as a free agent just before the start of camp. The 12-year veteran spent two seasons in Houston before being traded before last season. HARDEN’S LEADERSHIP D’Antoni doesn’t believe Harden can do much more statistically this season after putting up gaudy numbers the past several seasons. But he likes the way he’s grown as a leader in the last couple of years and hopes to see him continue to evolve in that area this season. “His leadership is getting better every year,” D’Antoni said. “He understands the importance of being positive. That’s invaluable and it’s invaluable that we keep that attitude all year.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 16th, 2019

Cole fans 15, Bregman homers as Astros top Rays 3-1

By Kristie Rieken, Associated Press HOUSTON (AP) — Houston's pair of aces dealt the Astros a pair of wins. Gerrit Cole carried his splendid September into an outstanding October with a 15-strikeout performance and Alex Bregman handed fans chanting MVP the mighty swing they craved. The Astros survived a wild ninth inning to beat the Tampa Bay Rays 3-1 on Saturday night for a 2-0 lead in their AL Division Series. Houston is one win from reaching the AL Championship Series for the third straight year. "We've got a lot more work to take care of," Cole said. "There's a few months this winter that maybe we can sit back and have a drink about it. Right now, it's on to the next one." Cole, 5-0 with a 1.07 ERA in six starts last month, set an Astros postseason strikeouts record over 7 2/3 scoreless innings to win his franchise-record 17th straight decision. The strikeouts tied for third-most in a postseason game, behind only Bob Gibson's 17 in the 1968 World Series and Kevin Brown's 16 in a 1998 NL Division Series. "He was incredible," manager AJ Hinch said. "He had complete command of the entire game." Cole's performance came after fellow ace and Cy Young Award contender Justin Verlander pitched seven scoreless innings to lead the Astros to a 6-2 win in Friday's opener. Throwback performances from another era. "Whether it's about the new-age opener or pulling guys third time through, most of the people that support that haven't had Verlander or Cole on their team," Hinch said. "It's hard for me to relate to having to pull guys early or wanting to pull guys early when these guys are putting up these kinds of performances. ... I'm going to roll with these boys while we have them." Cole (1-0), who led the majors with 326 strikeouts in the regular season, extended his big league record with his 10th straight game with at least 10 Ks. The Rays were unable to string anything together off of him on a night he induced 33 swings and misses — the most in a postseason game since MLB started tracking the stat in 2008 — and threw a career-high 118 pitches. "I don't think anything he did was surprising," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "He's just that good." "He was majestic," the Rays' Willy Adames said. Kevin Kiemaier doubled with two outs in the eighth and Cole was lifted after putting on Adames with Tampa Bay's first walk. The right-hander received a standing ovation as he walked off the mound and waved to the crowd just before he reached the dugout. Roberto Osuna took over and struck out Yandy Díaz to end the inning before loading the bases with no outs in the ninth. Austin Meadows and Tommy Pham hit consecutive singles, Ji-Man Choi walked and Avisaíl Garcia grounded into a forceout that scored Meadows. Osuna walked Brandon Lowe, reloading the bases, and Hinch brought in Will Harris. Travis d'Arnaud worked the count full, then struck out on a high cutter. Kiermaier grounded to first baseman Yuli Gurriel, who flipped to Harris, who stepped on first for the save. Tampa Bay is hitting .177 with two extra-base hits. Game 3 of the best-of five series is Monday in Florida. "I don't think there's a real message," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "They know what's at stake." Bregman, who hit a career-best 41 home runs in the regular season, homered off Blake Snell (0-1) leading off the fourth. "It's just lack of a pitch," Snell said. "I'm still finding it, still trying to get there. I know I can, so that's why it's frustrating." All seven of Bregman's homers have come off All-Stars, including two against Chris Sale and one each vs. Trevor Bauer, Clayton Kershaw, Corey Kluber and Kenley Jansen. His shot gave the Astros a home run in 27 straight games, extending a franchise record. After Lowe's error at second gifted Houston two runs in the opener, another error on helped in the seventh. Adames bobbled Gurriel's leadoff grounder to shortstop, then bounced the throw to first. Carlos Correa doubled and Martín Maldonado blooped a run-scoring single to left. Correa added a two-out RBI single off Nick Anderson in the eighth for a 3-0 lead. Snell, the 2018 AL Cy Young Award winner, sat out from July 22-Sept. 17 after arthroscopic surgery to remove bone chips in his left elbow. He didn't get out of the third inning in any of his three September starts, but said he hoped to give the Rays five innings on Saturday. Instead he was lifted one batter after Bregman's homer, finishing with four hits and a strikeout in 3 1/3 innings. "I wish I would have gone deeper," Snell said. "When you face a guy like that, you want to be out there as long as him."    DAZZLING DEFENSE Correa helped Cole out with a fantastic defensive play to start the game. Díaz led off with a grounder toward Correa, who grabbed the ball backhanded while on the run and spun around for the throw to Gurriel that just beat a sliding Díaz. "It's stuff that people don't see, but for me I always say that if you are going to win championships you have to pitch and you have to play defense, and then the offense comes," Correa said. UP NEXT Former Astro Charlie Morton, who got the win in the Rays wild-card victory, will start against Zack Greinke. Morton pitched for the Astros from 2017-18 and played a big role in their 2017 World Series title. He won Game 7 of AL Championship Series against the Yankees and Game 7 of the World Series at Dodger Stadium to give Houston its first championship. Morton had a tough time in his last start against Houston when he gave up a season-high six runs in four innings, which tied his shortest start of season, in a 15-1 win by Astros on Aug. 27. Greinke, acquired from Arizona at the trade deadline, went 8-1 with a 3.02 ERA in 10 starts after the trade capped by a gem in his last start when he came two outs shy of his first no-hitter on Sept. 25 against Seattle......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 6th, 2019

30 Teams in 30 Days: Nuggets to keep rolling with Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray

Like most summers in the NBA, the 2019 edition was chock full of trades, free agent news and player movement. From the defending-champion Toronto Raptors to just about every other team in the league, change was the most applicable word when it came to describing team rosters for the 2019-20 season. With the opening of training camps just around the corner, NBA.com's Shaun Powell will evaluate the state of each franchise as it sits today -- in order of regular-season finish from 2018-19 -- as we look at 30 teams in 30 days. * * * Today's team: Denver Nuggets 2018-19 Record: 54-28, lost in the second round of the playoffs Key additions: Jerami Grant (trade), Bol Bol (draft) Key subtractions: Trey Lyles, Isaiah Thomas The lowdown: The steady growth of the Nuggets was evident in a 50-win season and a first-round victory in the playoffs over the more-experienced Spurs, which was clearly a step forward. Then the journey ended with a sour taste after Denver lost a Game 7 at home to a lower seed, the Blazers. In all, the Nuggets received almost everything they’d hoped for from a developing contender, especially in the form of Nikola Jokic. The multi-skilled Serb established himself as the league’s most talented big man, if not the best period, with a stellar performance that attracted some Kia MVP notice. He averaged 20 points, almost 11 rebounds and seven assists in an offense that ran through him, rare in today’s spread-the-floor league where centers are being phased out or pegged as role players and pick-setters. Jokic reminded many of Bill Walton or maybe Vlade Divac for his precise and sometimes entertaining passing skills from the high post. His co-star was Jamal Murray, who made generous strides as a leader and shot-maker and fit well with Jokic. The Nuggets also played some of the best defense in the league for much of the season and had solid backcourt depth with Monte Morris and Malik Beasley averaging a combined 21 points off the bench. There were mixed reviews, however, for Gary Harris. The starting two-guard didn’t improve and in some areas actually regressed as he struggled with injuries in a 57-game season. Same for Will Barton, who shot 40 percent and played 43 games. But those were nit-picks. The Nuggets finally arrived after going a league-leading 34-7 at home, reaching the second round of the playoffs for the first time in a decade, and using the draft and trades to remake the roster over the last few years to stay in the attic in the very competitive West, which was no easy task. Summer summary: When an NBA team reaches a critical stage of the developing process and checks all the necessary boxes, it’s time to keep the continuity. Which means, time to pay up, and the Nuggets did just that this summer with two of their important figures: Murray and GM Tim Connelly, and both were easy calls. Murray went from a rookie who played behind Emmanuel Mudiay to a dependable, sometimes clutch-shooting guard in just three seasons. While he’s obviously the starter at the point for the Nuggets, Murray’s value lies in his flexibility. He can play off the ball and be just as valuable whenever Jokic assumes the “point-center” role. He averaged 18.2 points and 4.8 assists and showed growth despite struggling at times in his first postseason. He also doesn’t turn 23 until February. So the Nuggets gave him $170 million over five years, banking on his continued growth, which appears to be a safe investment. Therefore, Denver’s two most important players, Jokic and Murray, are under contract together for the next three seasons. Connelly replaced Masai Ujiri in 2013 and repaid the Nuggets’ faith by overseeing a basketball operation that has run mostly smoothly ever since. He drafted Jokic at No. 41 and hired Mike Malone as coach. The Nuggets have gone from 33 wins in Malone’s first season to 54. Even better, the meat of the roster is trending in the right direction and there’s no dead weight. This summer, the Wizards, after firing Ernie Grunfeld, chased after Connelly, a Baltimore native who attended college in D.C. Connelly broke into the business as an intern for the Wizards and has family ties to the D.C area, so the prospect of leaving Denver was a real threat. Ultimately, Nuggets boss Josh Kroenke was successful in persuading Connelly to stay. Usually that comes with a promise of a significant raise, but more importantly, Connelly saw what he’s building in Denver and couldn’t leave unfinished business. Denver has a solid mix of youth and vets and is coming off a season where it was the No. 2 seed in the West. Hard to walk away from that. Paul Millsap also cashed in when the Nuggets agreed to pick up his 2019-20 option year for $30 million. There was some question whether the Nuggets would tie that much into a soon-to-be 35-year-old forward who, statistically anyway, is coming off his worst season since 2009-10 and his fewest minutes since 2008. But Millsap still brings a solid defensive mindset and experience, and anyway, the Nuggets were all about maintaining the flow this summer. Plus, Denver will remain under the luxury tax with with Millsap’s option. Millsap’s minutes could be reduced this season because the Nuggets traded for a more athletic option in Grant. With the Thunder, Grant improved his 3-point shooting last season and became more of a well-rounded forward. If used correctly by Malone, he can thrive in Denver, which badly needs his physical gifts. Of course, there’s also the wild card: Michael Porter Jr. The club’s first-round pick two summers ago sat all last season while recovering from a back issue, then was scratched from summer league play in July because of a minor knee issue which was more of a precautionary move. In a best-case scenario, Porter stays healthy and gives the Nuggets three options at power forward. Connelly didn’t have a first-round pick this summer but swung a deal to fetch a second-rounder once Bol Bol dropped to No. 44 in the draft. The son of former NBA player Manute Bol, he suffered a foot injury last season at Oregon and NBA teams were wary of his potential for recovery. Well, Connelly and the Nuggets will essentially treat Bol as they did Porter; Bol will be an injury red-shirt and prepare for 2020-21. And so, the Nuggets’ summer wasn’t about making wholesale changes, but keeping the pace they’ve set over the last three seasons and rewarding some of the key personnel responsible for it. Patience has allowed the Nuggets to get this far and so there was no reason to panic or rush the process this offseason. 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 NewsSep 28th, 2019

Japan cattle farmers fear US trade deal will be death knell

US and Japanese officials insist a hard-won bilateral trade deal will be a “win-win”, but some Japanese cattle farmers fear the agreement could sound the death knell for their embattled sector. Cattle farmers are already struggling to adjust to the terms of two major free trade deals inked by Japan in recent years — the […] The post Japan cattle farmers fear US trade deal will be death knell appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 26th, 2019

Asian markets fall on Trump impeachment, trade fears

Hong Kong, China (AFP) — Asian stock markets fell Wednesday after US Democrats launched formal impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump and on renewed worries about trade as the president adopted a hard line on China. In a dramatic move, House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi announced a formal impeachment inquiry after US markets closed. Democrats accuse […] The post Asian markets fall on Trump impeachment, trade fears appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 25th, 2019

Gov’t disbursement as cushion vs trade rift

External sources will be hard-pressed to support growth, leaving domestic consumption and government spending as primary drivers. The post Gov’t disbursement as cushion vs trade rift appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 18th, 2019

30 Teams in 30 Days: Nuggets to keep rolling with Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray

Like most summers in the NBA, the 2019 edition was chock full of trades, free agent news and player movement. From the defending-champion Toronto Raptors to just about every other team in the league, change was the most applicable word when it came to describing team rosters for the 2019-20 season. With the opening of training camps just around the corner, NBA.com's Shaun Powell will evaluate the state of each franchise as it sits today -- in order of regular-season finish from 2018-19 -- as we look at 30 teams in 30 days. * * * Today's team: Denver Nuggets 2018-19 Record: 54-28, lost in the second round of the playoffs Key additions: Jerami Grant, forward (trade); Bol Bol, forward (draft). Key subtractions: Trey Lyles, forward; Isaiah Thomas, guard. The lowdown: The steady growth of the Nuggets was evident in a 50-win season and a first-round victory in the playoffs over the more-experienced Spurs, which was clearly a step forward; then the journey ended with a sour taste after Denver lost a Game 7 at home to a lower seed, the Blazers. In all, the Nuggets received almost everything they’d hoped for from a developing contender, especially in the form of Nikola Jokic. The multi-skilled Serb established himself as the league’s most talented big man, if not the best period, with a stellar performance that attracted some MVP notice. He averaged 20 points, almost 11 rebounds and seven assists in an offense that ran through him, rare in today’s spread-the-floor league where centers are being phased out or pegged as role players and pick-setters. Jokic reminded many of Bill Walton or maybe Vlade Divac for his precise and sometimes entertaining passing skills from the high post. His co-star was Jamal Murray, who made generous strides as a leader and shot-maker and fit well with Jokic. The Nuggets also played some of the best defense in the league for much of the season and had solid back-court depth with Monte Morris and Malik Beasley averaging a combined 21 points off the bench. There were mixed reviews, however, from Gary Harris; the starting two-guard didn’t improve and in some areas actually regressed as he struggled with injuries in a 57-game season. Same for Will Barton, who shot 40 percent and played 43 games. But those were nit-picks. The Nuggets finally arrived after going a league-leading 34-7 at home, reaching the second round of the playoffs for the first time in a decade, and using the draft and trades to remake the roster over the last few years to stay in the attic in the very competitive West, which was no easy task. Summer summary: When an NBA team reaches a critical stage of the developing process and checks all the necessary boxes, it’s time to keep the continuity. Which means, time to pay up, and the Nuggets did just that this summer with two of their important figures: Murray and GM Tim Connelly, and both were easy calls. Murray went from a rookie who played behind Emmanuel Mudiay to a dependable, sometimes clutch-shooting guard in just three seasons. While he’s obviously the starter at the point for the Nuggets, Murray’s value lies in his flexibility; he can play off the ball and be just as valuable whenever Jokic assumes the “point-center” role. He averaged 18.2 points and 4.8 assists and showed growth despite struggling at times in his first postseason. He also doesn’t turn 23 until February. So the Nuggets gave him $170 million over five years, banking on his continued growth, which appears to be a safe investment. Therefore, Denver’s two most important players, Jokic and Murray, are under contract together for the next three seasons. Connelly replaced Masai Ujiri in 2013 and repaid the Nuggets’ faith by overseeing a basketball operation that has run mostly smoothly ever since. He drafted Jokic at No. 41 and hired Mike Malone as coach. The Nuggets have gone from 33 wins in Malone’s first season to 54. Even better, the meat of the roster is trending in the right direction and there’s no dead weight. This summer, the Wizards, after firing Ernie Grunfeld, chased after Connelly, a Baltimore native who attended college in D.C. Connelly broke into the business as an intern for the Wizards and has family ties to the D.C area, so the prospect of leaving Denver was a real threat. Ultimately, Nuggets boss Josh Kroenke was successful in persuading Connelly to stay. Usually that comes with a promise of a significant raise, but more importantly, Connelly saw what he’s building in Denver and couldn’t leave unfinished business. Denver has solid mix of youth and vets and is coming off a season where it was the No. 2 seed in the West. Hard to walk away from that. Paul Millsap also cashed in when the Nuggets agreed to pick up his 2019-20 option year for $30 million. There was some question whether the Nuggets would tie that much into a soon-to-be 35-year-old forward who, statistically anyway, is coming off his worst season since 2009-10 and his fewest minutes since 2008. But Millsap still brings a solid defensive mindset and experience, and anyway, the Nuggets were all about maintaining the flow this summer. Plus, Denver will remain under the luxury tax with with Millsap’s option. Millsap’s minutes could be reduced this season because the Nuggets traded for a more athletic option in Grant. With the Thunder, Grant improved his 3-point shooting last season and became more of a well-rounded forward. If used correctly by Malone, he can thrive in Denver, which badly needs his physical gifts. Of course, there’s also the wild card: Michael Porter Jr. The club’s first-round pick two summers ago sat all last season while recovering from a back issue, then was scratched from summer league play in July because of a minor knee issue which was more of a precautionary move. In a best-case scenario, Porter stays healthy and gives the Nuggets three options at power forward. Connelly didn’t have a first-round pick this summer but swung a deal to fetch a second-rounder once Bol Bol dropped to No. 44 in the draft. The son of former NBA player Manute Bol, he suffered a foot injury last season at Oregon and NBA teams were wary of his potential for recovery. Well, Connelly and the Nuggets will essentially treat Bol as they did Porter; Bol will be an injury red-shirt and prepare for 2020-21. And so, the Nuggets’ summer wasn’t about making wholesale changes, but keeping the pace they’ve set over the last three seasons and rewarding some of the key personnel responsible for it. Patience has allowed the Nuggets to get this far and so there was no reason to panic or rush the process this offseason. 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 NewsSep 15th, 2019

NCAA 95: More than MVP, Oftana wants to be role model for San Beda

From out of nowhere, Calvin Oftana is the frontrunner for MVP in the NCAA 95 Men's Basketball Tournament. Posting per game counts of 15.3 points, 8.6 rebounds, 2.5 assists, and 1.2 blocks, the fourth-year forward has been the most consistent player for league-leading San Beda University. Because of him, the Red Lions haven't missed a beat even after losing Javee Mocon - and in the same light, Robert Bolick as well. And for Oftana himself, the fact that he has given and done it all to fill the leadership of Mocon and Bolick is much more important than the monster numbers he has been putting up. "Hindi ko talaga iniisip (yung MVP). I just play my game and want to be a role model sa mga kasama ko," he said. He then continued, "Minsan, yung mga nasa bench namin, nagtatampo pag 'di nakakalaro so gusto kong tingnan nila ako na nandun lang palagi, ready to step up sa kung anong kulang sa team namin. I just wanna be a role model sa mga teammates ko para ganahan pa rin silang maglaro kahit off the bench o any second lang silang maglaro." In his first three years in red and white, the pride of Dumaguete was the backup to Mocon. Still, each and every time he was sent into the court, he turned in quality minutes. Now, Oftana is one of the leaders of a San Beda machine that has remained undefeated thus far in its quest for a four-peat. And that fourth consecutive championship remains the focus for him and his teammates. "I just want to win a championship para masaya kaming lahat. Kung nandun man (yung MVP), siguro, nag-pay off lang lahat ng hard work ko," he said. He then continued, "Wala sa akin yung award. Ang goal ko is makita kami sa championship kahit wala na yung mga Robert Bolick, Javee Mocon." Indeed, Red Lions mentor Boyet Fernandez has but one reminder for the MVP leader - as well as Evan Nelle, Donald Tankoua, and James Canlas who are also in the top five of the race. "I always make sure my players realize that individual awards come second to winning a championship. I'm happy with Calvin and I appreciate what he's been doing," he said. He then continued, "I'm happy he's the leading candidate for the individual awards, but it will be for nothing if we will not win the championship." --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 12th, 2019

30 Teams in 30 Days: Pelicans could be in for seamless rebuild

Like most summers in the NBA, the 2019 edition was chock full of trades, free agent news and player movement. From the defending-champion Toronto Raptors to just about every other team in the league, change was the most applicable word when it came to describing team rosters for the 2019-20 season. With the opening of training camps just around the corner, NBA.com's Shaun Powell will evaluate the state of each franchise as it sits today -- in order of regular-season finish from 2018-19 -- as we look at 30 teams in 30 days. * * * Today's team: New Orleans Pelicans 2018-19 Record: 33-49, did not qualify for the playoffs Key additions: Zion Williamson (Draft), Lonzo Ball (trade), Brandon Ingram (trade), JJ Redick (free agency), Derrick Favors (trade), Josh Hart (trade), Jaxson Hayes (Draft), Nickeil Alexander-Walker (Draft) Key departures: Anthony Davis, Julius Randle, Elfrid Payton The lowdown: There were teams with worst records and teams with more drama. But no team had a combination of both quite like the Pelicans. It all swirled around Davis, the best player in franchise history, who pulled a power move by switching agents to Rich Paul, business partner of LeBron James. Everyone saw what was coming next except Dell Demps, the beleaguered GM who refused to be proactive and instead tried to fight a losing battle. Through Paul, Davis made a private trade request in the fall and then went public a week prior to the trade deadline when Demps hesitated. When the deadline passed, Davis was still in New Orleans and that was a problem. The rest of the season was a disaster, as Davis was in an awkward state of limbo and the Pelicans, anxious to preserve their only true asset, managed his minutes. The fallout was severe: Fan backlash toward Davis, a fractured locker room, a state of emergency within a franchise that wasn’t among the league’s healthiest to begin with, and Demps getting the boot. Everything else about the Pelicans was overshadowed, such as Randle’s solid production in his first (and subsequently only) season in New Orleans and Jrue Holiday’s continued splendid play on both ends. In the end, Davis had long checked out, the Pelicans fell back into the lottery a year after reaching the second round of the playoffs, and a housecleaning was ordered by ownership. Summer summary: History might reflect that the Davis fiasco, in hindsight, was the most important moment in franchise history, and in a positive way. That’s because a much-needed series of changes were forced to happen because of it, and just maybe the Pelicans will be better off for it. It created a change in command, with David Griffin replacing Demps and tackling the Davis situation head-on rather than tiptoeing around it. And because Davis was essentially benched the entire second half of the season, that allowed the Pelicans to fall into the lottery, where they got lucky and landed the first overall pick in one of those drafts that contained a potential game-changer. New Orleans flipped almost overnight, getting an impressive haul for Davis in the long-awaited trade with the Lakers, and adding Zion Williamson, an explosive talent with gate appeal. It was a best-case scenario for the Pelicans, who went from laughingstock to landing a game on Christmas Day this season. Griffin played his hand skillfully, unlike Demps. Griffin didn’t create distrust or burn bridges and instead maintained good communication with Davis and all potential trading partners. He created a robust market for Davis and then negotiated with the one team that needed Davis the most: the Lakers with an aging LeBron James. Not only did Griffin get promising young players in Ball, Ingram and Hart, he also acquired the Lakers’ future with a collection of first-round picks and first-round swaps. Essentially, if the Lakers collapse in the post-LeBron era, the Pelicans will be awash in assets similar to the Boston Celtics when those Brooklyn Nets’ first-rounders turned to gold. Williamson should never have to worry about talent around him in New Orleans as Davis did. And unlike Davis, Williamson won’t be in a hurry to leave in a huff. There’s no reason for the Pelicans to tank, knowing that ample picks are coming their way. With that in mind, Griffin seized the moment to ramp up the rotation, adding some much-needed shooting in Redick and a reliable veteran in Favors. It’s very possible that the Pelicans can compete for a playoff spot in 2019-20, and again, this seemed remote when last season ended. There’s plenty of hope for Ball. He’ll have the relief of playing away from L.A. for the first time in his life and the advantage of suiting up next to Holiday, who can play off the ball if necessary. Ingram will be returning from a health scare related to blood clots that cut short his season but the prognosis is good. In addition to Williamson, the draft also produced Alexander-Walker, who brings good size (6-foot-5) to the backcourt, and Hayes, a raw big man who’ll instantly enroll in the Pelicans’ development school. To make the upcoming season as stress-free as possible, Griffin handed coach Alvin Gentry a one-year extension. The pair once worked together in Phoenix, when Gentry led the Suns to the Western Conference finals. For the first time in his tenure with the Pelicans, Gentry has ample talent and a solid plan. Now it’s up to him to put the right pieces in place. Clearly, though, the big prize is Williamson, who comes with robust talent and also a personality that reflects well on him and the franchise. Williamson can be a savior and, once Drew Brees retires, the face of New Orleans sports. It all depends if he makes good on the immense expectations. Given his knack for making crowd-pleasing plays on both ends, the burly forward has star potential -- which is exactly what a small market needs. There’s a reason why the Draft lottery results caused Gentry to curse with joy and team employees to dance on tables. Perhaps never before has a franchise fallen hard, then rose suddenly, quite like the Pelicans did in a matter of weeks. They’re still partying in New Orleans. 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 NewsSep 10th, 2019

FIBA: Can Gilas pull the rug from under Tunisia?

It's been very difficult watching Gilas Pilipinas play at the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup in China. They've put out the effort, sure, but the execution on both ends has left a lot to be desired and it's pretty clear that the team has paid for the laughably short preparation time they were given. Now let's look at the general positional matchups we can expect against Tunisia. BIGS Philippines: Andray Blatche, June Mar Fajardo, Troy Rosario, Raymond Almazan, Japeth Aguilar Tunisia: Salah Mejri, Mohamed Hadidane, Mokhtar Ghyaza, Makram Ben Romdhane, Mohamed Abbassi If our bigs had a hard time against Yanick Moreira and Valdelicio Joaquim of Angola, then boy are they gonna find the going rough against Salah Mejri of the Dallas Mavericks and Makram Ben Romdhane, who plays for France's Saint-Chamond Basket. The 7'1" Mejri has been an absolute beast in China, averaging around 17 points, 10 rebounds, and 2 blocks per game, and he will give Andray Blatche, June Mar Fajardo, and Japeth Aguilar plenty to handle in the paint. Ben Romdhane has been great, too, as a complimentary piece to Mejri who's able to grab a lot of rebounds.  WINGS Philippines: Gabe Norwood, RR Pogoy, CJ Perez Tunisia: Michael Roll, Ziyed Chennoufi, Omar Mouhli, Radhouane Slimane Maccabi Tel-Aviv wingman Michael Roll will be the one to watch at the perimeter. The 6'5" shooter will be a tough match-up for the struggling Gabe Norwood and RR Pogoy, and I just hope Roll doesn't pop the cap for 20+ points against us. If he does, it'll be another long night for Gilas.  Needless to say, we'll need another big outing from breakout player CJ Perez to keep in-step with Tunisia and be in a position to win when the clock reaches the waning minutes. If Perez gets cold, too, we're an easy KO for Tunisia. GUARDS Philippines: Paul Lee, Kiefer Ravena, Robert Bolick, Mark Barrocca Tunisia: Omar Abada, Nizar Knioua, Mourad El Mabrouk The challenge for our inconsistent guards will be trying to stop the duo of Omar Abada and Mourad El Mabrouk. Abada is a speedster with great court vision, and he has a knack for finding Tunisia's bigs in easy spots to score. As for El Mabrouk, he's a streaky shooter, and if he gets going, we'll be in a world of hurt.  I want to personally see a strong bounce back effort from Kiefer Ravena. He's had a lot of ups and downs in the World Cup, but a breakout performance here will silence the critics and help our chances of maybe still clinching that Olympic berth. COACHING Philippines: Yeng Guiao Tunisia: Mario Palma.  Coach Palma isn't a stranger to Asian basketball. In fact, if memory serves, he's not a stranger to Coach Yeng, too. Both Coach Yeng and Coach Palma were at the 2009 FIBA Asia Cup in Tianjin, where coach Yeng's Philippines lost to coach Palma's Jordan in the KO quarterfinals. Jordan would eventually bag third place and qualify for the 2010 FIBA World Cup in Turkey. If Coach Yeng remembers that, then that would be great motivation to win today and get one back against his former tormentor. OVERALL We are not favored against Tunisia, at least judging by how they very nearly qualified to the second round had they beaten Puerto Rico two nights ago. Mejri will give us a lot of problems, especially if our interior defense remains lethargic, and it'll be a challenge guarding their shooters if our perimeter rotations are still bogged down. Still, a good shooting night and having minimal turnovers will help our chances at springing an upset. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 6th, 2019

30 Teams in 30 Days: Cavaliers to lean heavily on young roster

Like most summers in the NBA, the 2019 edition was chock full of trades, free agent news and player movement. From the defending-champion Toronto Raptors to just about every other team in the league, change was the most applicable word when it came to describing team rosters for the 2019-20 season. With the opening of training camps just around the corner, NBA.com's Shaun Powell will evaluate the state of each franchise as it sits today -- in order of regular-season finish from 2018-19 -- as we look at 30 teams in 30 days. * * * Today's team: Cleveland Cavaliers 2018-19 Record: 19-63, did not qualify for the playoffs Key additions: Darius Garland (Draft), Kevin Porter Jr. (Draft), Dylan Windler (Draft), John Beilein (coach) Key departures: JR Smith, Cameron Payne, David Nwaba The lowdown: The first season in the post-LeBron James era, Part II, was almost a carbon copy of the first one: He leaves and the team crumbles. This was pretty much expected from a team that was built around LeBron and then suddenly grew old overnight once he left. It didn’t help matters when Kevin Love, given a rich contract the previous summer, played only 22 games because of injury. That ensured the Cavs would be locked into a rebuilding season and rookie point guard Collin Sexton would receive ample playing time as a result, which was not necessarily a bad thing at all. After shaky initially, Sexton finished strong and averaged 20 points the last 2 1/2 months to make the All-Rookie Second Team. Also, swingman Cedi Osman benefited from increased playing time and had moments in his second season. In a mild disappointment, Larry Nance Jr. failed to take a generous step in his development and there’s fear he will be nothing more than a scrappy, hard-working role player who’ll make the occasional highlight dunk. Otherwise, the Cavs’ season served no major purpose. The remaining pieces from the LeBron era either crumbled in various ways or simply disappeared: JR Smith was suspended, essentially for insubordination; Love was hurt; Tristan Thompson plateaued; George Hill and Kyle Korver were traded. The Cavs sunk toward the bottom of the East, fell off radar for the first time in six years, and once again found themselves back in the lottery looking for help. Summer summary: In a summer of surprises around the NBA, one of the more under-rated events happened when the Cavs’ coaching search ended with a 66-year-old grandfatherly type who never spent a day on an NBA bench. John Beilein might well be a revelation, one way or another. He spent much of his college career at Michigan, where he was highly respected for his strategy, composure and character -- three elements he’ll need in Cleveland. Beilein had flirted with the NBA in years past; when nothing materialized, some NBA people thought his time had passed, especially once he reached retirement age. But the Cavs went with an out-of-the-box choice anyway, plucking Beilein even as the college-to-NBA transition comes with inconsistent results and yellow flags. Brad Stevens is the exception, and besides, he was in his mid-30s when he left Butler and took the Celtics job. The one current college coach whose name surfaces the most in NBA conversation is Jay Wright of Villanova, who has served on Team USA and appears NBA-ready (temperament, two-time champ, even wardrobe). Word is Wright will be on the Sixers’ short list if and when that job opens. Because of Beilein's age and the state of the Cavs, he seems a bridge-gap coach; if so, that’s a smart choice. He’s experienced at managing young players, and the Cavs will build their next era through the Draft. Top free agents don’t make Cleveland a destination choice, even when presented with the chance to play alongside LeBron. Given how quiet the Cavs were this summer, the odds are great that they’ll return to the draft lottery in 2020 and give Beilein additional players in their early 20s to nurture. He’ll have five this season, with Sexton and Osman returning, plus Darius Garland, Dylan Windler and Kevin Porter Jr. coming on via first-round picks. The prize is Garland, the No. 5 pick who was limited by a meniscus injury to five games in his one and only season at Vanderbilt. This seems eerily similar to years earlier when the Cavs took another guard with a limited (11-game) college career: Kyrie Irving. Garland was a three-time Mr. Basketball in Tennessee and was considered the best recruit ever at Vandy, and that’s about all NBA scouts had to work with this spring. Not only was his college career brief, but he also left the combine early. Apparently, that was enough for the Cavs, smitten by Garland’s instincts. The only question is how he fits with Sexton; both can play off the ball, although each is more comfortable as the lead playmaker. Porter represents a wild card of sorts. Talent-wise, he can be considered a steal with the 30th pick ... after being red-flagged by teams following a suspension at USC for poor conduct that cost him much of that single season. Porter was a workout beast prior to the draft, a swingman who brings great size (6-foot-6) and can create off the dribble. The Cavs had nothing to lose by choosing him at that point. Windler benefited from four years in college, steering underdog Belmont to the NCAA tourney and developing into a prospect by his senior year. The Cavs and Beilein can figure out how it all fits later. Right now, Cleveland is all about stockpiling as many assets as possible and giving that young core plenty of time to make their mistakes now, rather than later. And speaking of assets, they didn’t trade Love this summer. But that doesn’t mean he’ll be on the roster when next season ends, either. If the right price comes along — and that’ll be tricky because of his age, injury history and salary — Love can and will exit. LeBron James will eventually get a statue outside Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse (formerly Quicken Loans Arena), but he isn’t walking through that door again. The Cavs must take another road to respectability, and it could be a long one. 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 NewsSep 3rd, 2019

FIBA: Serbia eliminates Gilas from World Cup with 59-point win

The Gilas Pilipinas loss to Italy was bad but it somehow got worse as the national team ran into a gold-medal favorite in Serbia. The Philippines fought hard but Serbia was just too overwhelming with its star power Monday and the world no. 4 Serbians took a 126-67 victory in Group D play of the 2019 FIBA World Cup at the Foshan International Sports & Cultural Arena. Coming off a 46-point beatdown to Italy Saturday, Gilas was noticeably sharper to start against the Serbians. The national team even took its first lead of the World Cup as a Paul Lee jumper pushed the Philippines ahead, 9-7. However, that didn’t last long and Serbia unloaded a 21-4 run to end the opening period. Gilas got to within 11 multiple times in the second quarter as CJ Perez and Robert Bolick were once again amazing for the national team. But the top PBA rookies’ effort was not enough especially when Serbia sent its best 5 on the floor led by Denver Nuggets star Nikola Jokic. The Serbians piled up the points and had a commanding 27-point lead at halftime, shooting 68 percent from the field. Led by Bogdan Bogdanovic, the Serbians increased their shooting percentage and dropped the hammer in the third period, outscoring Gilas, 37-13, to almost double their lead, 99-48. It was cruise control for Serbia in the fourth as they finished up with a 59-point victory, joining Italy to the second round of the World Cup as Group D representatives. The Serbians shot 75 percent from the field and had seven players in double figures led by Nemanja Bjelica with 20 points. Bogdan Bogdanovic dropped 17 points on four triples while Nikola Jokic was good for 11 points, seven rebounds, and seven assists. For Gilas Pilipinas, CJ Perez once again was the shining star, leading the team in scoring with 16 points off the bench. Paul Lee started and scored 15 points for the Philippines but no other player  cracked double figures for Gilas. Andray Blatche shot 2/10 from the floor for five points before fouling out. Gilas wraps up group play against Angola (0-2) Wednesday before heading to Beijing for the 17-32 classification phase.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 2nd, 2019

Trump sparks confusion before doubling down on China tariffs

President Donald Trump doubled down Sunday on his hard line against China after sowing confusion with statements that he might be willing to soften a trade war G7 partners fear threatens the world economy. At the G7 summit in Biarritz, France, Trump announced a major trade deal with Japan and promised more of the same … Continue reading "Trump sparks confusion before doubling down on China tariffs" The post Trump sparks confusion before doubling down on China tariffs appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsAug 26th, 2019

Rookie Survey: Film study revealing much to this year s class

By John Schuhmann. NBA.com The incoming rookie class may be done with college, but study time is never over. Preparing for the NBA is about more than just the work on the floor and in the weight room. At the annual Rookie Photo Shoot in early August, NBA.com asked several rookies about watching film, whether their coaches [or trainers] want them focusing on certain players or certain aspects of the NBA game. A lot of names came up more than once, but the young guys aren't just watching current stars. In fact, you may be surprised by some of the vets that they're studying. Here's what the rookies had to say ... * * * Zion Williamson | New Orleans Pelicans | No. 1 overall pick "They just want me to be myself and play ... [Watches his own film] to see what kind of mistakes I made, where I could have made a better read." R.J. Barrett | New York Knicks | No. 3 overall pick "I like to watch LeBron [James], James Harden and Michael Jordan, because Michael Jordan is just the greatest, and I love the way that LeBron and James Harden play. They can score and pass." De'Andre Hunter | Atlanta Hawks | No. 4 overall pick "One of my coaches told me to watch Kawhi Leonard and focus on how he beats his defender and how he finishes at the rim ... He's really strong with the ball. He doesn't do a lot of moves to get past his defender. He just does what he needs to do and once he gets to the rim, there's no games either. It's a dunk or a strong finish." Darius Garland | Cleveland Cavaliers | No. 5 overall pick Have the coaches asked?: "Not yet." Who do you like to watch?: "D'Angelo Russell, Kyrie [Irving], [Dame] Lillard ... Just to see how they play pick-and-rolls, their reads ... Coming off the pick-and-roll coming toward the middle, you always have the back-side corner, because they always sink in to help the roller ... Opposite corner's always open, especially if you're going downhill like Russell Westbrook." Jarrett Culver | Minnesota Timberwolves | No. 6 overall pick "They talked about Scottie Pippen, players like that ... He can bring the ball up, he defends well ... Versatile for sure ... I go back and watch the games. I'm a big Jordan fan, so I watch Scottie Pippen all the time." Coby White | Chicago Bulls | No. 7 overall pick "They want me studying a little bit of everybody, a little bit of Dame... The way he moves without the ball whenever C.J. [McCollum] has it ... We watch Chris Paul pick-and-rolls, little things." Cam Reddish | Atlanta Hawks | No. 10 overall pick "Not anybody specific, but they want me watching film, definitely ... Players at my position ... So I watch Kevin Huerter, because he was at my position last year ... Just catching up on the [Hawks'] plays." P.J. Washington | Charlotte Hornets | No. 12 overall pick "I'm looking at guys like Draymond Green. I feel like me and him have similar body types, similar games as well. He's been really successful, so that's one of the guys that the coaches want me to embody ... Both [offense and defense] ... The way he pushes the break, gets everything set up at his position is crazy. He pushes the ball and gets everybody involved." Tyler Herro | Miami Heat | No. 13 overall pick "They want me watching Klay Thompson, J.J. Redick, guys that run off screens ... Just the footwork they have, how they run at one level coming off a screen, how quick they get off their shot, and really just how they move without the ball." Romeo Langford | Boston Celtics | No. 14 overall pick "Paul George and Devin Booker ... How they use their bodies to create contact and create shots." Nickeil Alexander-Walker | New Orleans Pelicans | No. 17 overall pick "We watch a lot of Wes Matthews, mainly for defensive purposes, how he guards ball screens ... The valuable things like guarding the ball Wes does really well ... Being a great teammate, things that you can't really teach he wants us to look at." On guarding screens: "It's positioning, knowing who you're going up against, knowing the scouting report, knowing the plays and when the play might happen, and what's going to happen after a pass is made, after a cut is made, stuff like that." Goga Bitadze | Indiana Pacers | No. 18 overall pick "I watch the bigs like Pau Gasol, Marc Gasol, most of the European bigs and try to get something ... Playmaking, reading situations and making plays." Matisse Thybulle | Philadelphia 76ers | No. 20 overall pick "My trainers will tell me to watch [Andre] Iguodala on defense and Manu Ginobili off the ball on offense." Brandon Clarke | Memphis Grizzlies | No. 21 overall pick [The coaches haven't asked] "as of right now ... I like to watch some old players, just to see the moves that they used, guys like Kevin Garnett, Shawn Marion, Michael Jordan, all of those dudes ... [Watching Garnett] I'm watching his heart, really, how hard he's playing, how much fun he's having, stuff that I would like to mimic." Grant Williams | Boston Celtics | No. 22 overall pick "I love watching guys like Draymond and Kawhi Leonard, how they play on both ends of the court, whether it's Draymond's passing and versatility on the offensive end, and Kawhi playing the mid-range." Ty Jerome | Phoenix Suns | No. 24 overall pick "I asked [about film] and there response was just to be my best self, as far as being focused on really trying to improve my game and master our offense and our principles." "So he sent me clips of Philly [where Suns coach Monty Williams was an assistant last season] ... I'll probably be playing a lot on the ball ... It's about how they move, the different reads off it, and where you can be." Nassir Little | Portland Trail Blazers | No. 25 overall pick "They haven't asked me that yet, but it's probably going to come up soon ... I watch Kawhi Leonard, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, guys like that ... I'm looking at where they get to, where they get their shots off, their different spots." Admiral Schofield | Washington Wizards | No. 42 overall pick "P.J. Tucker, Tony Allen, Shane Battier, Stanley Johnson, Marcus Smart, Kawhi Leonard ... Just how they're able to switch on different guys, be physical, play smart and not foul ... Just their motor on defense, and what they do on the offensive end as well, keeping it simple, especially my first couple of years." John Schuhmann is a senior stats analyst for NBA.com. 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 NewsAug 20th, 2019

Bills running back McCoy using his doubters as motivation

By John Wawrow, Associated Press PITTSFORD, N.Y. (AP) — Question LeSean McCoy all you want for having lost a step now that he's on the wrong side of 30 and coming off his least productive season. The Buffalo Bills running back says he won't hold it against anyone when proving them wrong. Insisting he's still "The Guy," McCoy ended an offseasonlong silence following the Bills' final training camp session Tuesday by saying he's heard all the doubts, and using them as motivation. "It's kind of weird. Since I've been like 9 years old, I've been the top guy so it's even weird to hear stuff like that. But I mean, it comes along with it," McCoy said. "I guess that's just how it is. I'm fine with that. I know who I am. I know how I play. And my teammates know that. So I mean, we'll see on Sundays," he added. "And the one thing I won't do, I won't even bring it up. So if somebody here says something about me, I won't bring it up to you. It'll be like I never heard it." McCoy, who has previously acknowledged not being thrilled to celebrate turning 31 last month, has plenty to prove entering his 11th season and fifth in Buffalo. After topping 1,100 yards rushing in 2016 and '17, McCoy's numbers plummeted last year. The NFL's 2013 rushing leader finished with 514 yards rushing and 752 yards from scrimmage — both career lows. Speculation of McCoy's status was further fueled this offseason, when the Bills restocked their backfield by signing Frank Gore and TJ Yeldon in free agency. And then Buffalo used a third-round draft pick to select Devin Singletary, whose shifty style drew comparisons to McCoy at Florida Atlantic. "It's no different. Just guys in the backfield to help me out," McCoy said of the added competition. "I'm the guy. I feel like that. That's what I've been told. And that's my every day approach." He then dismissed a question over the possibility of being traded before the season begins. "I've seen that. But for the last two years, people have been saying that," said McCoy, who is entering the final year of his contract. "If that was the case, I would've been gone." The Bills have publicly backed McCoy. General manager Brandon Beane opened training camp two weeks ago by reiterating comments he made after drafting Singletary. Asked about "the outside noise" of trade speculation, Beane said, "There's not any inside noise," and chalked it up to the media having nothing to report on while the team was off. "When Sean and Brian Daboll roll the ball out, LeSean's going to be the first running back to touch the ball," Beane added, referring to coach Sean McDermott and Buffalo's offensive coordinator. McDermott on Tuesday said he's liked how McCoy has handled the added competition. "I think he's off to a good start. His attitude's been great," McDermott said. "And I look forward to watching him continue to get himself ready to go for the season." McCoy has worked exclusively with the starting offense through camp, and has reeled off several impressive runs. The next step comes Thursday, when the Bills open the preseason by hosting Indianapolis. McCoy spoke with a calm, confident voice, and said he's learned his lesson from last year when he brashly shared his objective to reach the 12,000-yard plateau to solidify his place among the NFL's greats. He couldn't even break the 11,000-yard mark, and enters this season ranked 25th overall and third among active players with 10,606 yards rushing. "When you kind of focus on the numbers, the yards, you kind of don't get it where you want it," he said. "I think the first goal is just to make every rep, make every play count, work hard and win games, and the other stuff and stats, they'll follow." He's also aware of how mercurial the media and fans are when it comes to production. "You have a bad two games and then you have three hot ones, and you're the man," McCoy said. "No matter what goes one, they'll look for the guy with name or the money. So it kind of motivates me." Not all of Buffalo's running struggles could be pegged on McCoy. The Bills were introducing a rookie quarterback in Josh Allen, which led to opposing defenses focusing on stopping McCoy. Buffalo also featured a patchwork line after center Eric Wood and guard Richie Incognito unexpectedly retired. The Bills have retooled their line by adding seven newcomers, including rookie second-round draft pick Cody Ford. And they've upgraded their group of receivers, too, by signing Cole Beasley and John Brown in free agency. McCoy is impressed by the additions, and said Beasley and Brown will not only help the passing attack, but also open space for the running game. The addition of Gore was welcomed by McCoy, because they're close friends and spend the offseason working out in Florida. "I'm excited, knowing it's a challenge and everybody's talking about the backs and the new additions, but I'm challenging myself," McCoy said. "I look to be the best player every snap. So I take the challenge for myself.".....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 7th, 2019

AP source: Carter returning to Hawks for 22nd NBA season

By Paul Newberry, Associated Press ATLANTA (AP) — Vince Carter is putting off retirement for at least one more season. With that, he’ll claim the longest career in NBA history all to himself. A person familiar with the situation confirmed that Carter has agreed to terms on a one-year contract to return to the Atlanta Hawks for his record 22nd season. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been announced. The 42-year-old Carter never wavered in his desire to play with someone this season. He is tied with Robert Parish, Kevin Garnett, Kevin Willis and recently retired Dirk Nowitzki — all of whom played for 21 seasons — for the longest career in NBA history. “Just waiting for the right opportunity,” he said on a recent conference call to discuss the upcoming Jr. NBA Global Championship, when questioned by a reporter from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Nothing has changed as far as that goal and that dream of mine.” The deal was first reported by ESPN. Essentially an extra coach during his first season with the Hawks, Carter served as a mentor to some of the NBA’s most promising young talent, including point guard Trae Young and forward John Collins. This year, the Hawks added first-round picks D’Andre Hunter and Cam Reddish, giving the team two more players who will surely benefit from Carter’s experience and leadership. Carter also showed last season that he’s still got some hoop skills. He was a valuable member of the playing rotation on a rebuilding team, playing in 76 games with nine starts, averaging 17.5 minutes and 7.4 points per contest. While Carter is likely to get less playing time after the additions of Hunter and Reddish, the Hawks wanted him back and finish off what is expected to be a 14-man roster this season. Carter entered the league in 1998 — the same year Young was born — as the fifth overall pick out of North Carolina. He sparked a wave of “Vinsanity” in Toronto, where his high-flying style made him one of the league’s top players. He began a run of 10 straight seasons where he was selected to the All-Star Game appearances and averaged more than 20 points a game. Carter was dealt to New Jersey in a blockbuster trade early in the 2004-05 and spent nearly five seasons with the Nets. Since then, he bounced around to Orlando, Phoenix, Dallas, Memphis and Sacramento before landing in Atlanta last season. The only blemish on his resume is the lack of an NBA title, which isn’t likely to change in Atlanta. The Hawks, who are in the midst of a total roster makeover focused on young talent, went 29-53 last season and are again pegged as a longshot to make the playoffs in the Eastern Conference. After reporting for training camp a year ago in Atlanta, Carter said he still feels like a 20-something when a new season rolls around. “This is like I’m in my third, fourth, fifth year,” he said. “I’m excited about the opportunity. I’m excited about playing. I still love playing. I still love competing. I still enjoy the traveling, the ups and downs of the league. That’s what it’s all about. It’s hard to let go.” Coach Lloyd Pierce, who is heading into his second season with the Hawks, loved having Carter around to give players such as Young and Collins an extra shoulder to lean on during their transition to the NBA. Pierce is only eight months older than Carter. “When we have our locker room and on-the-bus debates and conversations, he’s on our side,” Pierce joked. “He can relate a little closer to the coaching staff than he can with the players.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 5th, 2019

ONE Championship: Eduard Folayang believes his style matches up well against Eddie Alvarez

Lightweight stars and former world champions Eduard “Landslide” Folayang of the Philippines and Eddie “The Underground King” Alvarez of the United States are set to lock horns in a must-see ONE Lightweight World Grand Prix semi-final matchup at ONE: Dawn of Heroes this coming Friday, August 2nd at the Mall of Asia Arena in Manila.    Facing a former UFC and Bellator world champion in Alvarez, Folayang knows that he is up against what could be the biggest challenge of his career, but also believes that his style matches up well with the ultra-aggressive American.    “Yeah, for sure, [my style] matches up well [with his], and kailangan ko pang pinu-in yung mga areas na magiging precise, na magagamit ko against sa kanya,” Folayang told ABS-CBN Sports.    Alvarez is known for his charge-forward brawling style that made him a fan favorite among fans during his runs with North American promotions.    Folayang is a gifted striker who has shown stopping power in the past, most notably his third-round TKO win over Japanese legend Shinya Aoki back in 2016, the win that netted the Pinoy star his first ONE world championship.    One clean shot from either man could spell disaster for the other.    Hard-hitting Russian Timofey Nastyukhin spoiled Alvarez's ONE with a TKO win back in March, and Folayang is looking to do the same.   “I think one of the things that I saw is, halos karamihan ng mga talo ni Eddie Alvarez is more on sa mga high-level strikers, so tine-take into consideration ko yun talaga, and siyempre, depende rin talaga sa kung ano yung magiging gameplan niya eh, kasi gusto niyang manalo eh, ako ganoon dun, so I need to read kung ano yung magiging approach sa laban, kasi alam ng bawat isa sa amin na we are strikers eh, so paano yung adjustment ng bawat isa? I think yun yung isa sa mga titignan ng bawat kampo namin,” Folayang explained.    One area that could prove to be a problem for the Pinoy is the ground game. While Folayang and Team Lakay’s grappling and wrestling have improved dramatically throughout the years, top-notch grapplers have remained to be a problem for the Baguio-based team.    Alvarez, while usually prefers to stand and trade, is also a high-level wrestler and could look to bring the bout to the mat.    “Sa ground game niya, magaling din siya eh, he has proved himself time and time again na talagang may submission and knockout wins din siya, so all-around din well-rounded din siya,” Folayang said.     The 35-year old Baguio City-native is coming off a world title loss to Aoki in their rematch in Japan back in March and is eager to get back on track and begin his hunt for a third world title reign.    With the bout against Alvarez on Friday being a lightweight tournament semi-final, a win for Folayang moves him to the Grand Prix finals and a step closer to challenging for the title again.    “Sa akin, siguro, it motivates me to do well, kasi siyempre, I wasn’t able to defend my belt the last time, I think this is a good opportunity for me to bounce back,” said the two-time champ.    Catch ONE: DAWN OF HEROES on Friday, August 2 LIVE on ABS-CBN S+A channel 23 starting at 8:30 PM. Livestream will be available on the ABS-CBN Facebook Page and on iWant  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 1st, 2019

Astros ace Greinke deal; 2 dozen trades on deadline day

By Ben Walker, Associated Press Out of nowhere, the Houston Astros got a huge head start on October. On a dizzying day that featured two dozen trades, the Astros pulled off the biggest and most startling deal, adding ace Zack Greinke to an imposing rotation already loaded with All-Stars Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole. Plenty of familiar names were on the go Wednesday — Shane Greene and Mark Melancon boosted the Braves’ bullpen, with Scooter Gennett, Jesús Aguilar, Mike Leake and Tanner Roark among those also moving. But it was the Astros’ acquisition of Greinke from Arizona for four minor leaguers that quickly became the talk of baseball. The deal came right before the deadline for swapping players to still have them eligible for the postseason. “We had him high on our list and we didn’t know this was even remotely possible and it really wasn’t until the last 48 hours and really the last 24 hours that we started to get traction on something,” Houston general manager Jeff Luhnow said. The AL West leaders and 2017 World Series champions added two other pitchers, too, getting starter Aaron Sanchez and reliever Joe Biagini from Toronto. “Houston made some big deals. They’re really good. They were good before,” Red Sox President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski said. A lot of contenders were busy. The Chicago Cubs added Detroit’s Nicholas Castellanos to their lineup, the Phillies got outfielder Corey Dickerson from Pittsburgh and the Washington Nationals acquired relievers Daniel Hudson, Roenis Elías and Hunter Strickland. In most cases, major leaguers were swapped for minor leaguers. “When it comes to trades, one thing I’ve learned is, just wait,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. “You’ve got to wait until the very end and it plays itself out. The 11th hour is the most powerful hour there is. To get things done before that, it normally doesn’t work to get what you want. There’s the 11th hour at work.” Several players whose names swirled in the tradewinds stayed put. Giants ace Madison Bumgarner, Mets starters Noah Syndergaard and Zack Wheeler and Pirates closer Felipe Vázquez remained in place. So did Mets closer Edwin Díaz and Texas starter Mike Minor. “Nothing changed for me. I never expected to be somewhere else until that happened,” Bumgarner said. “I just have a job to do and I’m going to do it. We’re going to miss a few guys we got rid of. That’s going to be tough.” Major League Baseball made July 31 a hard deadline this year for trades. Now, no deals can be made until after the World Series. “This was a unique deadline, it felt,” said Yankees general manager Brian Cashman, whose AL East-leading team didn’t make any significant moves. Pitchers Marcus Stroman, Andrew Cashner, Homer Bailey and Jason Vargas were among the players who were traded in recent weeks. And on Tuesday night, the Cleveland Indians agreed to send pitcher Trevor Bauer to Cincinnati in a three-team swap that brought back outfielder Yasiel Puig. That trade became official Wednesday, setting off a full morning and afternoon of swaps. Wheeler heard the speculation involving him. “It’s almost happened several times and never did. I’m happy to be here and I’m concentrating on producing and doing well here,” he said. “It was all there for it to happen and just didn’t. I was ready for it, especially with me being a free agent after the season.” Atlanta concentrated its effort on padding its bullpen. A day after getting reliever Chris Martin from Texas, the Braves got Greene from Detroit and Melancon from the Giants. “We engaged everything — position players, starting pitchers, the bullpen — right up until the end,” general manager Alex Anthopoulos said. “At the end of the day, where we thought there were deals that made sense for us and what we had to give up and so on, the bullpen made the most sense. But we definitely tried some other areas. We just couldn’t wind up with a deal that made sense to our organization.” The 30-year-old Greene has 22 saves and 1.18 ERA and was an All-Star this season. He’s likely to take over the closer’s role — Luke Jackson had been the latest to try it for the Braves, and was just 17 for 25 in save chances. “They’re excited, I’m excited,” Greene said in Anaheim, where the Tigers played the Los Angeles Angels. “I’m starting a new chapter and going to a contender.” At Yankee Stadium, Greinke had been pulled after five innings because of a rain delay and was watching video of his start when manager Torey Lovullo interrupted — GM Mike Hazen wanted to break the news. Hazen said the trade was finished in a hurry, in the final 20 minutes before the 4 p.m. deadline. Soon, word reached Progressive Field in Cleveland, where Houston was preparing to play the Indians. Cole said the Astros did “a lot of hooting and hollering” about “getting a Hall of Fame pitcher, a craftsman.” “We are just really shocked and ecstatic,” Cole said. The 35-year-old Greinke is 10-4 with a 2.90 ERA this season. The Astros now have four starters with ERAs in the top 15 in the majors this year — Verlander is fifth with a 2.73 ERA, Greinke is ninth, Cole is 11th at 2.94 and Wade Miley ranks 14th at 3.06. Verlander leads the AL in wins (14) and ERA, and Cole tops the majors with 212 strikeouts. “If we stay healthy,” Luhnow said, “this team is as good as any team I’ve ever seen.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 1st, 2019