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Phoenix trial begins for NBA players accused of assault

Phoenix trial begins for NBA players accused of assault.....»»

Category: sportsSource: philstar philstarSep 14th, 2017

NBA players Marcus and Markieff Morris acquitted of assault

em>By Clarice Silber, Associated Press /em> PHOENIX (AP) — A Phoenix jury acquitted NBA players Marcus and Markieff Morris in their aggravated assault trial Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time). The twin brothers were accused of helping three other people beat 36-year-old Erik Hood in January 2015 outside a high school basketball game in Phoenix. At that time, the 28-year-old brothers played for the Phoenix Suns. Marcus now plays for the Boston Celtics and Markieff is with the Washington Wizards. After the verdict was read in Maricopa County Superior Court, the Morris brothers said they were relieved and ready to get back to their teams. They have missed the start of the NBA preseason because of the trial. Another defendant, Gerald Bowman, also was found not guilty on two counts of aggravated assault. Two other co-defendants pleaded guilty to the charges on Sept. 13. Jurors got the case Monday afternoon (Tuesday, PHL time). They began hearing testimony Sept. 18 (Sept. 19, PHL time). Defense attorney James Belanger said in closing arguments that the case was inexcusably tainted by Hood’s mentor trying to solicit two witnesses to implicate the Morris brothers for a cash payment in return. Two witnesses testified about the mentor’s attempt and their refusal to lie. They both went to break up the fight and placed the Morris twins near the site but not as part of the altercation. Prosecutor Daniel Fisher had urged jurors to convict the brothers, saying Marcus Morris kicked Hood in the head and Markieff Morris acted as an accomplice because “they had an axe to grind” with him. Defense attorneys pressed Hood during his testimony about his financial motives in the case and his knowledge of the NBA players’ substantial financial assets. They also repeatedly said Hood lied to police nine times when he said both twins were involved in the assault. Hood later changed his statement to say Markieff did not beat him but had been in the vicinity. Timothy Eckstein, a lawyer for Marcus Morris, said Hood knew he had to “double down on Marcus” beating him because the case wouldn’t be worth anything without one of the brothers involved. Hood testified he wanted justice for the incident that left him with a broken nose and other injuries. He said he has known the Morris brothers since their youth basketball days, but they had a falling out in 2011. Hood testified that his relationship with the twins became strained because of a misinterpreted text message he sent their mother. But he said there was nothing “improper” happening with him and their mother. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 3rd, 2017

NBA players Marcus and Markieff Morris acquitted of assault

PHOENIX — A Phoenix jury acquitted NBA players Marcus and Markieff Morris in their aggravated assault trial Tuesday (Wednesday Manila time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 4th, 2017

Man testifies in trial over NBA players assault

PHOENIX — The man accusing NBA players Marcus and Markieff Morris of aggravated assault was pressed Tuesday (Wednesday Manila time) by defense lawyers about.....»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsSep 20th, 2017

Suns sign TJ Warren to contract extension

em>Phoenix Suns press release /em> The Phoenix Suns have signed forward T.J. Warren to a multiyear contract extension. “We are excited about extending T.J.’s contract,” said General Manager Ryan McDonough. “T.J. has improved every year and we think he has the potential to continue to grow as he just begins to approach his prime.  We view T.J. as an important part of our young core going forward and we are glad that we were able to reach an agreement on this extension.” Warren, a 6-8, 215-pound forward, is entering his fourth NBA season and averaged career highs of 14.4 points, 5.1 rebounds, 1.2 steals and 31.0 minutes in 66 games (59 starts) in 2016-17. The 24-year-old also shot 49.5 percent from the field, placing 28th on the NBA leaderboard. One of the league’s most efficient scorers, Warren averaged 17.6 points on 56.0 percent shooting following last season’s All-Star break as he and LeBron James were the only wings, and two of just six players overall, to average at least 15 points and shoot at least 55 percent during the season’s second half. Originally the Suns’ selection with the 14th overall pick of the 2014 NBA Draft, Warren holds career averages of 11.2 points, 3.7 rebounds, 0.9 steals and 24.4 minutes in 153 games, all with Phoenix. With a career field goal mark of 50.2 percent, he is one of just two players from the 2014 NBA Draft class (Nikola Jokic) to be averaging double-digits scoring while making at last half of his field goal attempts. A native of Durham, North Carolina, Warren starred collegiately for two seasons at North Carolina State University. In his final season with the Wolfpack in 2013-14, he earned ACC Player of the Year honors and set a single-season school record with 871 points, breaking the 39-year-old record previously held by Hall of Famer David Thompson.   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 26th, 2017

Rolling Stone defamation trial over rape article begins

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — The woman who claimed she was gang raped in a now-discredited story in Rolling Stone magazine said the University of Virginia dean who counseled her after she came forward about her alleged assault "did everything right," an .....»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsOct 19th, 2016

Where are the Chinese middlemen in the P6.4B shabu case?

MANILA, Philippines – Pre-marking of evidence in the P6.4-billion shabu shipment case is set to start on Thursday, May 24, at the Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 46, but this will have to proceed without most of the accused to account for. Four months since arrest ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsMay 23rd, 2018

Of Pizzas and Ensaymada: The PBA Press Corps issue emphatic response to Ali Peek s accusations

The PBA Press Corps is taking none of Ali Peek's rather controversial comments. In an official statement released Tuesday, the PBA Press Corps condemned Peek's accusations on social media, saying that the group will not back down from anyone who questions its integrity. In a series of social media posts on Twitter and on Facebook, Peek, a 16-year PBA veteran who now works as a TV analyst, questioned the non-inclusion of Globalport's Sean Anthony and Alaska's Vic Manuel to any of the All-Star teams that will see action this week. Peek specifically singled out the "guys in [the PBA] Press Room" and even accused the Press Corps of taking bribes, whether in the form of money, pizza, and/or ensaymada, in exchange of votes for award and All-Star selections. The only problem with Peek's argument is that the PBA Press Corps has no say whatsoever in choosing players that will participate in the All-Star Games. "Mr. Peek got his facts wrong, first, because the media doesn’t determine who the members of the All-Star teams are, and second, the PBA Press Corps has never asked for anything in return from anyone for an award," the PBAPC statement said. "It was unimaginable on his part – not knowing how the All-Star members are named – considering that he was in the league that long and that he is a member of the television panel covering the games for Cignal’s HD Channel," the statement added. Ali Peek has since apoligized on his Facebook account, saying he "got carried away," and he was in a "very aggressive mood," as of late. However, the PBA Press Corps feel that Peek could have done better. "The PBA Press Corps doesn’t make decisions in a heartbeat, the group makes them after long deliberations and careful consideration," the statement said. "That’s why it pains the group so much that Mr. Peek decided to come up with his rants without any provocation.  And in his apology posted on Facebook today, the group wonders why Mr. Peek did not talk to the PBAPC first considering “that we are right next door to each other” before he came up with them?" the PBA PC added. The full PBA Press Corps statement can be read below.   Official statement from the PBA Press Corps in response to Ali Peek's rather controversial accusations on social media #PBA2018 pic.twitter.com/AgCY3TeoJN — Paul Kennedy Lintag (@paullintag8) May 22, 2018     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 22nd, 2018

Taurasi reaches 1,000 career 3s, Mercury win WNBA opener

PHOENIX --- Diana Taurasi scored 20 of her 26 points in the first half and became the first WNBA player with 1,000 career 3-pointers, helping the Phoenix Mercury beat the Dallas Wings 86-78 on Friday night in the league's season opener. Taurasi's one of four players, joining the NBA's Damian Lillard, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, to reach the 3-point mark with less than 400 games played. DeWanna Bonner returned after missing last season to give birth to twins, and had 17 points and 12 rebounds for Phoenix. Brittney Griner, coming off a championship in Russia, battled foul trouble and finished with 13 points. Newcomer Briann January added 10 points. Liz Cambage, a top inte...Keep on reading: Taurasi reaches 1,000 career 3s, Mercury win WNBA opener.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsMay 19th, 2018

Marquez trains for national team with no logos on jersey

By Carlos Rodriguez, Associated Press MEXICO CITY (AP) — Defender Rafael Marquez, named by the U.S. Treasury Department on a sanctions list for alleged trafficking ties last year, trained with Mexico ahead of the World Cup wearing a logo-free jersey. During the practice in Mexico City, other players wore black shirts with the logos of three sponsors on the chest but Marquez's was blank. Marquez was not made available to the media to comment. "We have consulted with different experts and we decided to take actions that, to our understanding, will not prejudice" Marquez or the Mexican Soccer Federation, the federation said in a statement. "We hope Rafael Marquez finds himself in the best sporting position possible, and for the off-pitch issues that have arisen to be dealt with quickly," the statement added. Last August, Marquez was among 22 people sanctioned by the department's Office of Foreign Assets Control. He was accused of acting as a frontman for the Raul Flores Hernandez drug trafficking organization in the west-central city of Guadalajara. He denied wrongdoing and vowed to clear his name. The 39-year-old Marquez played for Barcelona, Monaco and New York Red Bulls and is considered one of the biggest stars in Mexican soccer history. He recently retired from Atlas in Mexico's top flight. Atlas' president had said in the past that he saw no problem with Marquez wearing a uniform with logos. Marquez is among the 28 players vying to be included in Juan Carlos Osorio's squad for Russia, expected to be announced June 4. It will be his fifth World Cup if he is selected. His inclusion in the final squad for Russia has been in doubt because of the allegations. In January, the federation's president Decio de Maria said a condition for Marquez's inclusion in the World Cup squad would be coming off the sanctions list. The vastly experienced Marquez has played 143 times for Mexico, scoring 19 goals for "El Tri." He remains a huge presence in Mexico's dressing room and is referred to by other players as "Master.".....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 19th, 2018

Murder raps in Carl-Kulot slays refiled in Navotas RTC

Two police officers accused of killing teenagers Carl Angelo Arnaiz and Reynaldo “Kulot” de Guzman were formally charged yesterday before the Navotas regional trial court with murder after a Caloocan court dismissed the case for lack of jurisdiction......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsMay 17th, 2018

Former Wildcat Cauley-Stein thinks Kentucky ‘should get a super team together’ in NBA

In the age of super teams, being part of one has crossed Willie Cauley-Stein's mind. But unlike the fancied roster in Golden State and Houston, the super team Cauley-Stein thinks that could be formed is a squad made up of former Kentucky Wildcats. "That's crazy. I literally just asked (Devin) Booker about that three weeks ago," the Sacramento Kings center said on Tuesday during his media availability, referring to his former Kentucky teammate and Phoenix Suns star Devin Booker. Cauley-Stein is among the 28 active players in the NBA that came out of University of Kentucky. He played three years at Kentucky before being selected sixth overall pick by the Kings in the 2015 NBA ...Keep on reading: Former Wildcat Cauley-Stein thinks Kentucky ‘should get a super team together’ in NBA.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsMay 16th, 2018

Russia cuts World Cup squad player who faced doping case

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia cut from its World Cup squad a player who faced a doping investigation. The Russian Football Union said on Monday defender Ruslan Kambolov injured a calf muscle during a game for Rubin Kazan the day before. He was replaced by 38-year-old veteran Sergei Ignashevich, who has come out of international retirement. The RFU said coaches dropped Kambolov, "taking into account the training time (until the World Cup begins) and the possibility of exacerbating the problem." Kambolov was investigated by FIFA this year following the publication of World Anti-Doping Agency investigations alleging Russian officials covered up earlier doping cases. Lawyers for Kambolov said last month his case was closed for lack of evidence, though FIFA hasn't confirmed that. The center back Ignashevich has made 120 appearances for Russia but last played for the team at the 2016 European Championship. Russia coach Stanislav Cherchesov said he met on Sunday with Ignashevich, who refused previous comeback pleas. "Ignashevich heard me out calmly," Cherchesov said in a statement. "And today he gave his agreement after the results of Kambolov's examination became clear." Ignashevich said the call was a surprise "but I thought saying yes was the right thing to do," in comments on the team Twitter feed. "After all, it's the World Cup and moreover it's happening in our country. I'll give every effort to help the team." Russia is struggling ahead of the tournament with no wins in its last five games. Since the start of 2016, it has played 13 games against teams who will be at the World Cup and won only once, against South Korea. In Group A, Russia plays Saudi Arabia in the opening game of the World Cup on June 14 in Moscow, followed by Egypt and Uruguay. Ahead of the tournament, Russia has scheduled friendlies against Austria away on May 30 and against Turkey in Moscow on June 5. Russia's 28-man preliminary squad must be cut to 23 players by June 4......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 15th, 2018

First carrier designed in China begins sea trial

China's first domestically designed aircraft carrier set out its maiden sea trialon Sundaymorning, indicating it might not be long before it is delivered to the Chinese Navy.   The colossal vessel, which displaces 50,000 metric tons, left the Dalian Shipbuilding Industry's shipyard in Liaoning province about7 amamid thick fog with the assistance of several tugboats before navigating into the sea under its own power.   The People's Liberation Army Navy said in a statement the trial aims to demonstrate the reliability and capability of the ship's propulsion systems, adding its construction has been proceeding well.   Hu Wenming, chairman of China Shipbu...Keep on reading: First carrier designed in China begins sea trial.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsMay 14th, 2018

Elite 60 Development Camp looks to help Gilas unearth best young talent in PH

With the goal offinding the next young basketball prospects, the Elite 60 Development Camp gathers 60 of the best 16-and-under high school players in the country today for an intensive four-day training. Spearheaded by coaches Eric Altamirano and Alex Compton, the goal of the program is to identify potential talents who may be considered for a spot in the national team for the age-group competitions. "We tried to come up with the program that will complement and assist the national team program, specifically for the under-16 and under-18 program," said Altamirano. The four-day camp which begins Thursdayat Colegio de San Agustin Gym in Makati is the culmination of the program...Keep on reading: Elite 60 Development Camp looks to help Gilas unearth best young talent in PH.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsMay 10th, 2018

Draw of another title lights postseason path of Warriors

By David Aldridge, TNT Analyst One of the Golden State Warriors’ people, walking out of Smoothie King Center Sunday (Monday, PHL time), summarized the team’s season so far in detailing Kevin Durant’s 38-point performance against the Pelicans in Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals. “Sometimes, people forget,” he said, a wry smile on his face -- and, yes, they do. With all that has gone on around the league this season, the Warriors’ storyline hasn’t been quite as eyeballed nationally this season compared with previous years. (Not that they should care. It’s just an observation.) The Cleveland Cavaliers blew things up last summer and reformed in the fall, blew it up again in the winter and reformed again in the spring. The Boston Celtics are displaying amazing resilience through seemingly devastating injuries to put themselves on the brink of another conference finals. The Philadelphia 76ers have their Fun Bunch. There was Paul George’s trade to Oklahoma City (and all that entailed, now and later) and the Toronto Raptors’ dramatic and successful changes throughout the year. And, at the forefront, there was the Houston Rockets’ rise as a legit and serious challenger to the Warriors in the Western Conference. During the regular season, the Warriors’ energy and productivity dropped off ever so slightly, like the planet killer in “The Doomsday Machine,” one of the all-time best original “Star Trek” episodes, after the doomed Commodore Decker drove a Shuttlecraft right down its throat. (Of course, Captain Kirk figured out to destroy it. Dude, come on. This is James Tiberius Kirk we’re talking about.) And at the end of the regular season, they were hit with a series of body shot injuries: Stephen Curry’s MCL strain, Durant’s ribs, Klay Thompson’s thumb injury, Draymond Green’s hip, and on and on. Those all sapped their continuity and made them look mortal down the stretch of the 2017-18 season, and the Warriors went 7-10 as the season waned. But, after dispatching the Kawhi Leonard-less Spurs in five games in the first round, and taking a 3-1 lead on the Pelicans now, they’re again on the precipice of the Western Conference finals. A date with Houston is looming and a chance at a third title in four seasons is still on their racket. “I think as the playoffs go on, every series requires a different intensity level,” Green said last week. “I think we met that standard that it takes to win playoff games at the level we’re at right now, which is the second round. It’s not our first rodeo. We’ve been here a lot of times and we know what it takes.” Steve Kerr rolled the “Hamptons Five” lineup out Sunday (Monday, PHL time), the Lineup Formally Known as Death -- Curry, Thompson, Andre Iguodala, Green and Durant. It’s been their trump card for almost two years, the lineup that can’t be solved by the opposition, even as it’s chipped away at most of Golden State’s other conventional units. Durant went for 38, and the Warriors rolled to a 118-92 win and a 3-1 series lead. They didn’t use it much this season -- that quintet only played 127 minutes together this season, after logging 224 minutes last season -- because of all the injuries, because they tried to limit their biggest players’ minutes and because using Iguodala as a starter thins out Golden State’s bench. The Warriors’ most frequently used five-man unit this season featured Zaza Pachulia at center; among five-man units leaguewide that played 200 minutes or more together this season, per NBA.com/Stats, that quintet was third in the league in Offensive Rating, at 118.6. But Pachulia hasn’t played a minute in the playoffs, and if the Rockets are the Warriors’ next opponent, he may not play much then, either, against Clint Capela. Kerr often points out that the Warriors have six centers on the current roster, and most of them have gotten at least a little run at various points. But after JaVale McGee was ineffective in Game 3 against New Orleans Friday (Saturday, PHL time), Kerr pulled his trump card. It’s still a game-changer, and when a season comes down to a best-of-seven series, one game can be the difference. “We all bring the best of each other,” Curry said of the Hamptons unit. “We increase the pace of the game, but the versatility [is] at the defensive end -- Andre, Draymond, KD shoring up the paint, switching a lot of the screens and the action from the offense and Klay doing what he does on the perimeter. I think the biggest thing offensively is that we’re all playmakers, try to look for the best shot, stay within ourselves and just make the right play.” Going back to the old playlist may give the Warriors comfort in what has been another drama-filled season, with the contretemps about being disinvited from the White House by President Trump in September getting things off to a rollicking start. But the end of the season was what raised eyebrows around the league. Curry’s absence down the stretch combined with a teamwide ennui -- “I really don’t like talking about it,” Thompson said -- that gave potential playoff opponents hope they might be able to catch Golden State napping. The Warriors’ boredom showed up most at the defensive end. After being in the top seven in both unadjusted and adjusted Defensive Rating in each of the last four seasons -- including first in the league in both categories in the first championship season of 2014-15 -- Golden State fell to 11th and 12th, respectively, in the regular season. They came out of the All-Star break focused -- they were fifth in the league in Defensive Rating on March 1. But all the injuries blunted their momentum, and the scariest of all -- a serious injury to second-year guard Patrick McCaw in Sacramento March 31 (April 1, PHL time) -- shook the team more than people on the outside realized. “Throughout that time, we had spurts,” Durant said. “We played a great OKC team. We went in there and won. Then we lost to Indiana by 20, and then it’s like, when you’re riding just on emotion a lot, you tend to go up and down. It’s like a roller coaster. I think that’s what it was. We had those spurts where we played well and played a focused game, but then Patty goes out, boom, and there was just so much that went on with that. Then Steph goes out with a freak injury. So much went on with that. I think we were just so up and down emotionally it kind of blinded us from our goal, which was to be good every single night as basketball players.” McCaw’s injury -- a bone bruise suffered when he fell after a dunk attempt against the Kings, which required him to be carried off the court in Sacramento on a stretcher -- hit everyone hard. “When Pat got injured, I think that took a little bit out of us,” Durant said. “It took a little bit out of Steve as well. You could just feel it, when Steph went out, then I went out, then Draymond, then Klay. Our emotions were so up and down. When your emotions are, you have too many emotions in the game of basketball, it can kind of blind you from what you really have to do. This is a technical game. So when you put too many emotions into it, it kind of took us away from what we wanted to do.” McCaw, who played in 57 games this season, was not only a part of Kerr’s rotation. He is also a well-liked person who was getting better on the floor. He was re-evaluated last week and will be checked out again in a month. Though he’s been traveling with the team during the playoffs, his season is almost certainly over. And as his injury came during the Warriors’ many injuries down the stretch, its chilling effect was multiplied. “It definitely got to everybody,” Green said. “Kind of the uncertainty of not knowing what’s going on with him. The rotations. Everybody’s like, ahh, kind of tiptoeing around, trying to make sure you get to the playoffs healthy. A lot of that makes a difference. I mean, that’s our brother. To see him down like that, not be able to walk off the court under his own power, him not being around us for two or three weeks, it was kind of like the unknown. It sucked. And I think it definitely had an effect on everything.” But Durant doesn’t like the metaphor of the proverbial switch being turned on at playoff time explaining the team’s improvement the last couple of weeks. “I don’t like when you call it a switch,” he said. “Because guys come in and get extra work in every single day. They work on their bodies every day, they get treatment. You come in here any time, you see guys in here working on their games. I think when you say ‘a switch turned on,’ if guys went cold turkey on everything as professionals during the season, and just tried to pick it up in the playoffs, I think that’s turning on a switch. Mentally, focus-wise, game plan-wise, I think you can turn on a switch, because you can lock in on an opponent, you know their tendencies, you can just focus in on one group of players instead of one day it’s San Antonio, the next day it’s Phoenix, next day it’s Sacramento. You’re going so up and down. If that makes sense. “So I think everybody’s putting in that work individually all year, and as a team, you know, stuff has to come together. We have to focus in on what we need to do, game plan wise, tendency wise, just try to take away things. I think that’s where you kind of turn it up just a bit.” Golden State has performed in fits and starts in the first two rounds. The Spurs didn’t have enough firepower to be a serious threat, but they played hard and were increasingly effectively on defense as the series went on. The Warriors didn’t really have an answer for LaMarcus Aldridge after Game 1. New Orleans had, until Sunday (Monday, PHL time), been more and more successful at making the Warriors shoot contested shots. That certainly gibes with Curry’s return after five weeks. He’s healthy, but rusty. After his adrenaline-filled return last Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time) in Game 2 against the Pelicans, he made just 14-of-33 from the floor in the two games in New Orleans. There was talk afterward about breakthroughs for Curry cardiovascularly. The next few games will tell whether Curry is truly recovered and ready to be two-time Kia MVP Steph … or will he just be on the floor (as he was for long and important stretches in the 2016 playoffs after returning from a Grade 1 knee sprain). The Warriors still made The Finals, but Curry wasn’t Curry against Cleveland, and everyone, starting and ending with LeBron James, knew it. No one in NBA history has changed the geometry of basketball more than Curry, and when he’s on the floor, the ball starts flying around. “Our formula is simple: if we out-pass people, we win,” Warriors forward David West said. “Ball movement. With guys going in and out of the lineup, it causes moments where guys try to carry the load, maybe try to shoulder the load individually. But the strength of the group is the group.” But the Warriors can still throw so many different things and people at you. Iguodala shot a career-worst 28.2 percent on three-pointers in the regular season. He’s at 39.3 percent in the 2018 playoffs. Does anyone doubt he was biding his time until the postseason? No one wearing an NBA uniform is in better shape than the 34-year-old Iguodala, no one is smarter about the game or matchups, and no one is a prouder, fiercer competitor. The 2015 Finals MVP brings his bag of intangibles with him on the road even more than at home, as he did Sunday. In that game, he was making life miserable for the Pelicans’ Nikola Mirotic, creating deflections, making the right reads and impacting the game despite scoring just six points. Kerr likened him to Scottie Pippen after Game 4, but Iggy wasn’t buying it -- “Steve just does that to make sure I don’t get mad ‘cause I don’t shots,” Iguodala quipped. He may be right. But Iguodala and Green have a mind meld defensively that’s at the heart of the Hamptons’ effectiveness. “Andre and I, we’re usually on the same page,” Green said. “Two guys who really think the game, especially on that side of the ball. Sometimes we can talk things out and it works perfect and not say a word, and know what each other’s going to do. It definitely helps our team out defensively kind of having two coaches out there on the floor on that side of the ball.” Whether it’s switching to guard each other’s man, running at an open shooter to close before the ball gets there with the other man rotating, they know what the other guy is going to do. And that second or so the Warriors save defensively keeps them from being broken down. “How fast can you make that decision?,” Green says. “How demonstrative are you going to be about that decision? Are you going to second guess that decision? That’s usually when it doesn’t work; if you’re going to go, just go. That’s kind of the motto that Andre and I go by. If you’re going to go, just go; everybody else fall in line and rotate, and we’ll work it out from there.” And while Green and Rajon Rondo have been exchanging pleasantries throughout this series, Green didn’t pick up his first postseason technical foul until Sunday (Monday, PHL time). He’s been under control, coming up to the edge without going over. Someone without access to the internet asked Kerr if he’d ever played with anyone who instigated or tried to get under the skin of opponents. It’s a testament to Kerr’s comic timing that he actually did wait a beat before answering. “I did play with Dennis Rodman,” he said. Never be fooled by Kerr’s overall pleasant disposition and quick-with-a-quip acuity, though. He is a fierce competitor that wants to win big, the same as his current point guard, who is similarly underrated on the competition scale. Kerr has seven rings as a player and coach, and it’s not a coincidence he’s frequently been around teams that got it done in June. But the Warriors are playing for even bigger stakes than just winning the 2018 title. Legacies are created this time of year. A third title in four seasons, with four straight Finals appearances, would put Golden State in very rarified air in the modern game. San Antonio won three titles from 2002-07. But the Spurs, famously, never have won back-to-back titles. The Kobe Bryant-Shaquille O’Neal-led Lakers, which won three straight from 2000-02, are the closest modern-day team to pulling off what the Warriors are trying to accomplish. Before then, you’re talking about the Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls, with six titles in eight seasons -- the two non-title seasons coinciding with Jordan’s sojourn to the minor leagues of baseball. Moreover, the Warriors are the hub around which the modern NBA now spins. And that is an even bigger legacy. Almost everyone (hi, Thibs!) tries to play the way Golden State does now -- the quick hitters, ball movement, pace. Teams do it in different ways. The 76ers look very different than the Warriors, with Joel Embiid their centerpiece of operations, and with 6'10" Ben Simmons taking up so much space with the ball in the halfcourt. The Rockets look different still as there’s not a ton of ball movement. There’s just an unending series of screen and rolls with Chris Paul and James Harden with the rock, looking for the inevitable open man in the corner or way, way behind the three-point line. A lot of things have happened the last 15 years to lead us where we are now. The league changed almost all the rules regarding zone defense, and got rid of almost all defensive contact on the perimeter. Rockets GM Daryl Morey and others led the burgeoning analytics movement, which championed shooting more and more three-pointers as a primary means of scoring, not as a novelty. Mike D’Antoni’s Phoenix Suns went with Amar’e Stoudemire at center, surrounding him with four smalls that could all shoot it from deep, and scoring came out of its coma leaguewide. Kerr and Pelicans Coach Alvin Gentry have always been quick to credit D’Antoni’s influence on the modern game, starting in Phoenix and working through his current team in Houston. “He’s the guy that just eliminated the center position -- let’s just go small and fast and shoot more threes,” Kerr said of D’Antoni. “I was inspired by Mike, but I was also inspired by Pop (the Spurs’ Gregg Popovich) and Phil Jackson in terms of basic ball movement, screening. But pace is the name of the game these days, and people go about it in different ways. Ironically, Mike’s team (in Houston) is the slowest team in the league now. I didn’t see that coming.” But no one has put all of it together -- pace, small ball, shooting and defense -- like the Warriors have the last four seasons. The Rockets are the closest thing we’ve seen to Golden State, and they’re hungry, and they’re coming. And the Warriors and Rockets are just a win apiece away from seeing the clash of the Western Conference titans. They are in the middle of it, so they can’t stop and think about what it all means. We get that. But everyone wants to put a marker out there that’s hard to catch. LeBron is chasing a ghost. The Warriors have already made their mark on the game. They’re almost in position to do more. History is forever. “It’s important, because it’s what’s right in front of us,” Curry said Sunday. “We don’t think about the historical context of anything. For us, we have an amazing group of guys, amazing coaches sitting behind us. We’re appreciating the moment. That’s really all it is. You have tunnel vision for Game 5 at home, then a new series, hopefully (after that). The historic context doesn’t really seep into the locker room when it comes to what that means. It’s just about this year.” Longtime NBA reporter, columnist and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer David Aldridge is an analyst for TNT. 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, 2018

Davis, Pelicans thump Warriors in Game 3

By Sekou Smith, NBA.com NEW ORLEANS -- The fear factor remained until the very end for Alvin Gentry. His memory is as long as Anthony Davis from head to toe, so like everyone else in the Smoothie King Center Friday night (Saturday, PHL time), the notion that a 20-point lead late in the fourth quarter against the Golden State Warriors was safe just didn’t compute. Gentry was caught up in the moment, trying to win a game in this Western Conference semifinal after dropping the first two in Oakland. And he was trying to block out the memory of the Pelicans’ last home game against these Warriors in the playoffs. He had the perfect seat then, next to Warriors coach Steve Kerr, his top assistant and offensive coordinator, the man in charge of engineering an epic comeback from a 20-point deficit that would lead to a Game 3 win in that first-round series and an eventual sweep of the Pelicans that helped propel the Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green-led Warriors to the NBA title in 2015. So yeah, it was on his mind, even if everyone else in the building tried to say it wasn’t, that it was ancient history and that it had no impact on this current Pelicans team. Gentry knew better than that and confessed as much as his team drew blood in this series with an emphatic 119-100 Game 3 win this time around. “Obviously, it’s going to stick with you,” Gentry said of that pivotal 2015 game that ultimately led to the Pelicans hiring him away from the Warriors. “I was on the Warrior bench then and I thought [the Pelicans] played great game. And because I was on the Warrior bench it made it so scary tonight … I was there when Steph started making threes and then Klay started making threes and before you know it a 20-point lead was nine points and then seven points, and then all of a sudden Steph made a shot out of the corner, which by the way I have a picture of that on my phone that I’ve kept all of these years and now I can eras it off. “But there just a scary team, you never feel comfortable. Even when he [Kerr] took his guys out, I was like ‘let’s play two more minutes before we take [our] guys out. Because you are just never comfortable with that team.” Gentry helped chase the ghost of that 2015 game away for the a franchise, a city and especially his stars on Friday night. Both Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday were on that team that collapsed three years ago. They needed this win more than they realized, more than they cared to acknowledge late Friday night (Saturday, PHL time) after the building had cleared out and everyone had a chance to process what had just transpired. The Pelicans beat the Warriors at their own game, employing the “appropriate fear” Gentry joked about with the media afterwards. It was all there, starting with relentless defense and sweet shooting; 14-for-31 from beyond the three-point line. It continued with the sudden bursts of energy from all directions; Solomon Hill knocking down three deep three-pointers early and reserve guard Ian Clark, crushing his former team for 18 points, including daggers down the stretch. It was punctuated by Davis and Holiday grinding away like the guys who fueled the Pelicans’ first-round sweep of the Portland Trail Blazers, and veteran point guard Rajon Rondo breathing as much verbal fire as Green, while also driving the Pelicans with 21 assists, the first player with at least 20 in a playoff game since he did it in himself in 2011 when he was with the Boston Celtics. The Warriors simply couldn’t keep up. And Curry didn’t the have the same touch or adrenaline he had in his playoff debut in Game 2, when he torched the Pelicans for 28 points in 27 minutes off the bench during his first action after missing nearly six weeks with a knee injury. “Most of it is attributed to the Pelicans,” Kerr said. “Their defense was great. They were the aggressors. I thought they brought the force, the necessary force to the game on their home floor, and these are the ebbs and flows of a playoff series, especially when you get past the first round. Everybody is really good and that’s a team that just swept Portland in the first round and on their home floor down 2-0, this is kind of what you expect.” Gentry has unleashed all that. When the Pelicans lost All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins to a season-ending Achilles injury in late January, the framework for this team had to be altered completely. The Pelicans had to lean on Davis to dominate the way he did (33 points on 15-for-27 shooting, 18 rebounds, four steals and three assists). Holiday (21 points, seven rebounds, five assists) had to be set free to resume the All-Star ways he showed earlier in his career. And Rondo needed the keys to the car and the freedom to guide the Pelicans’ young stars to the edge the way he has throughout this postseason, complete with at least two more face-to-face skirmishes with Green Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). “That’s the way he plays, he talks a lot of …” Rondo said after being informed that Green suggested he was trying to bait him into a confrontation. Rondo, who joined Magic Johnson and John Stockton as the only players in NBA history with multiple 20-assist games in the postseason, understands the process a team must go through to reach that next level. He was a young point guard in Boston when he learned it from Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Doc Rivers during the Celtics’ 2008 title run and the years they spent as a contender after that. And he knows success at this stage is more about the Pelicans and what they do than it is about any beef, real or perceived, between he and Green. “It definitely is, but it starts with defense,”he said.“We were able to get some stops, defensively. It’s hard to run and keep pace when you’re taking it by the net every time which we did in game one so we cleaned up a little bit better in game two and three and look forward to making adjustments for game four.” Without Gentry understanding and trusting that same process, and facilitating the perfect environment for all of his players, especially his three biggest stars, this Pelicans team could have easily fallen out of the playoff mix in a wild Western Conference. That race that went down to the final night of the season for the Minnesota Timberwolves and Denver Nuggets and affected the seeding for every team after the No. 1 Houston Rockets and No. 2 Warriors. Gentry had to empower Rondo to infuse the right kind of bite in both Holiday and Davis, whose voice grows louder with each game -- he didn’t hesitate to make a statement in a second half huddle Friday night, barking to his teammates that “we are not going to lose this game.” “That was the message,”he said.“We can’t lose this game. It’s always tough to come back from 0-3. Our mindset is to go out there, play, and do what we’re supposed to do from all the game planning. Whatever results happen, happen. We followed the game plan to a T tonight.” And now the real fun begins. The atmosphere will be electric for Sunday afternoon’s (Monday, PHL time) Game 4. The expectations will have changed dramatically for the Pelicans in just a few hours. Can they do it again? Will they exhibit the same appropriate fear against a championship Warriors team that will be smarting from a Friday night (Saturday, PHL time) dose of their own medicine? Gentry, the architect of this perfectly brewing storm, is counting on it. 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 5th, 2018

PVL: Valdez, Creamline begin Reinforced Conference campaign

Star hitter Alyssa Valdez begins her quest to end a three-year title drought when the Creamline Cool Smashers open their campaign in the 2nd Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference against newcomer Petro Gazz Angels at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan on Sunday. Game time is at 4:00 p.m. and will air live on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23, ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 166, LIGA and via livestream. Valdez has her eyes on delivering the first-ever title for the beefed up Cool Smashers and to capture her first crown since helping PLDT win the V-League Reinforced Conference title back in 2015. “Oo nga eh (medyo matagal na) pero excited na ako for this conference,” said Valdez. As part of their build up to bag the coveted crown, Creamline tapped the services of former De La Salle University stars and decorated veterans Michelle Gumabao and libero Mel Gohing. Back as Creamline import is Kuttika Kaewpin of Thailand with new partner in solid middle blocker Serbian Nikolina Asceric. Also seeing action for the Cool Smashers are setter Jia Morado, former BaliPure player Risa Sato, Jema Galanza, Pau Soriano and Coleen Bravo, making Creamline as one of the teams to beat in this tournament. “Mas mataas ang pressure kasi we’re on our second year na rin and mas maraming kinuha na iba pang magagaling na players,” Valdez said. “Siguro ang pressure for us is to really give a good fight more than getting the championship kasi if you give good fight naman against the other teams, hopefully, makaabot kami sa dulo.” But the Cool Smashers are sure to find the Angels a tough opening day opponent. Petro Gazz of head coach Jerry Yee is out to spoil Creamline’s party with former DLSU star Paneng Mercado leading the way. Backing her up are Wensh Tiu, Chie Saet, Djanel Cheng, two-time champion Cai Nepomuceno, who was recruited from Pocari Sweat, Rachel Austero and Ranya Musa. The Angels tapped as reinforcements Kadi Kullerkannm of Estonia and Anastasia Trach of Ukraine.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles   .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 5th, 2018

2018 Nobel Literature Prize postponed after 'MeToo turmoil – Swedish Academy

STOCKHOLM, Sweden – The Swedish Academy said Friday it would postpone this year's Nobel Literature Prize for the first time in almost 70 years, as it is rocked by turmoil over links to a man accused of rape and sexual assault. "The Swedish Academy intends to decide on and announce the ........»»

Category: newsSource:  rapplerRelated NewsMay 4th, 2018

CNN investigates: 103 Uber drivers accused of sexual assault, abuse

CNN investigates: 103 Uber drivers accused of sexual assault, abuse.....»»

Category: newsSource:  cnnphilippinesRelated NewsMay 1st, 2018

Imports key to PSL Finals

The championship of the 2018 Chooks-to-Go Philippine Super Liga Grand Prix which begins on May 1 at Smart Araneta Coliseum will be decided by import scoring and the defense played on them. It's inevitable in an import-laden conference that the players from overseas will dominate the action. They bring height, athleticism and a skills set honed by high levels of international play. They will be the main points of attack and the ones that must be marked by the defense. The F2 Logistics Cargo Movers return to the Finals after stopping the Foton Tornadoes in the semifinals. Their main import weapon is Venezuelan national team player Maria Jose Perez. Perez is a returnee to the F2 fold ...Keep on reading: Imports key to PSL Finals.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 30th, 2018