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On-fire Alas proves he could be an outside threat

BOCAUE, Bulacan --- NLEX head coach Yeng Guiao was practically begging for Kevin Alas to shoot from the outside. So Kevin did do just that and he ended up with a new PBA career high. Alas led the Road Warriors' charge Sunday at the Philippine Arena here and NLEX completed a come-from-behind win over Blackwater to secure a place in the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup playoffs. Spiked by five triples, Alas finished with 25 points, 16 in the fourth quarter. He also had eight rebounds and five assists for good measure. "Good thing Kevin Alas saved the day for us. I've been getting on Kevin's outside shooting the last few games, I've been asking him to take outside shots," Guiao said. "I did not expect that it would pay dividends this early. But I've been telling him that he's just underusing his outside game. Today he showed us that he is an outside threat," he added. For Alas, it was about time for him to repay the trust his coach has been giving him. It also proves that coach Yeng's tough love actually works. "I played okay nung last game pero I ended up, napag-sabihan ako ni coach Yeng nung game na yun. I just wanted na suklian yung binibigay na trust ni coach Yeng," he said. "Matagal na. Pero sabi niya sa post-game namin kanina ‘kung di ko na naman papagalitan at mamumura to si Kevin di na magkaka-shooting to’ parang ganun so yun lang kailangan lang talaga suklian yung trust na binibigay sa akin ni coach Yeng," Alas added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

Kiefer making the Philippine Arena his own personal playground

BOCAUE, Bulacan --- It could be safe to say that Kiefer Ravena likes playing at the Philippine Arena. The Phenom has only played two games at the massive INC-owned facility and those two are some of his better performances so far in his rookie season. His first time at the Philippine Arena in Christmas of 2017, he scored 20 points, dunked for the first time in the PBA, and got a win. The second time on Sunday, he scored 23 points, punched his ticket to his first PBA playoff appearance and oh yes, he got another win. Not too bad. "It's not so often you play in this kind of atmosphere. Bihira lang maglaro PBA dito so make the most of the opportunity here," Ravena said. Sunday at the Philippine Arena also gave the league a glimples of what the "K and K" backcourt could do. While Ravena had 23 points, it was actually Kevin Alas that led NLEX in scoring with 25, a new PBA career-high. If the duo ends up being a powerful combination for the Road Warriors, this game against Blackwater would be a nice origin story. However, there's more important business for NLEX to handle right now and that's taking care of its playoff bid. "Even though we're secured of the quarterfinals, we want to continue the momentum and finish as high as we can," Ravena said.   --- Follow this writer on  Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

With LA as backdrop, NBA opens latest ASG chapter

By Shaun Powell, NBA.com LOS ANGELES — There’s a very real chance of seeing it all at the NBA All-Star Game from the world’s greatest players and athletes, who are trained to entertain. And they deliver on that, every year, for the most part. Which brings us to this year’s showpiece: Will we finally see the All-Stars play defense, or not? Simple question. Over the last three years, they game morphed into a blob of uncontested shots and layups with the pace of a NASCAR event and the intensity level of a turtle race. Last year Steph Curry comically dropped to the floor rather than putting his body between Giannis Antetokounmpo and the rim (maybe wisely, but still). That was a flash-point moment. Perhaps because of fear of getting injured, or maybe the body just needs a break after a half-season, players rarely spent much energy trying to stop anyone. That led to wild and repetitious scoring sprees, where the losing team averaged 170 points, and ultimately, new changes designed to encourage players to at least simulate a real game and turn it up two notches. And so, Sunday’s (Monday, PHL time) game at Staples Center will serve as the laboratory rat and perhaps usher a new era for the midseason game. If today’s players treat it the way the old-timers did, then this could be special. If not, this could be 194-187. “I think it’ll be different,” said Curry. The rules committee was alarmed enough by the public backlash of the last two games, where the winning West team came a combined 12 points from hitting the 200-point mark, that the traditional format was scrapped. No longer is it East vs. West, now it’s the leading vote-getter in both conferences choosing their own squad, regardless of conference. Therefore, Team Stephen will tip against Team LeBron with the mixed squads lending some intrigue and could cure the defense and intensity issues. As an added bonus, each member of the winning team will receive $100,000 vs. $25,000 for the losers, although it must be mentioned that the only player in an All-Star uniform making below eight figures is Karl-Anthony Towns. Still, the idea was to raise the incentive level and hoping it raises the fourth-quarter heat. The coach of the LeBron team, Dwane Casey of the Raptors, said he plans to do his part by shuffling the minutes based on who’s trying the hardest. “I went to our players individually and asked two questions: ‘Do you want to put on a show, or do you want to win? Let me know.’ I’d like them to go and compete. I want to win. We owe it to the league and the fans to let them know that the NBA isn’t about rolling the ball out there. There are a lot of fundamental things we can do on the court, and it starts with the All-Star Game, with everyone watching.” It helps that the game will feature a few subplots designed to make it interesting. Such as: LeBron and Kyrie Irving, together again. They had a mysterious split last summer after Irving, two years removed from a championship in Cleveland and with the chance of additional chances to win another, demanded and received a trade. He’s in Boston now, creating a rivalry with Cleveland whereas none existed before the deal. But apparently there was no acrimony generated by the split and the two have remained on decent terms, based on the chatter between them. Nothing personal, in other words. And anyway, LeBron chose Irving for this team. The reunion, says Irving, will be “pretty awesome.” LeBron: “Listen, anytime I get an opportunity to be with a fellow teammate of mine on the same court, and then you add on the fact of what we were able to accomplish in the three years, they just make it special. You automatically start thinking about the moments. There was a time when I was in Miami when I thought about if there was a chance for me to be Kyrie's teammate at All-Star Weekend. I thought about that. I didn't think it would be possible, and then we became teammates. We were on the same All-Star court together as teammates. Those thoughts still go into my head of how great it was to break the drought in our city, over 50-plus years, when the both of us had magical, magical Finals runs. So, it's always special. Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, together again. Well, the two ex-Thunder ‘mates did play for the West squad last season, yet kept their distance, both on and off the court, the entire weekend. Also, they had testy exchanges this season, evidence that if nothing else, the competitive spirit between them remains high. Yet, all seems civil regarding the split two years later, maybe because Westbrook gained a half-measure of revenge when Paul George arrived this season. Curry and James Harden, together. As team captain, Curry selected Harden, and at least for one weekend, the two will put aside some natural conflict. One: They’re among the leading candidates for the MVP award, and those in the Harden camp believe he was robbed of the second MVP won by Curry. Two: The Warriors and Rockets are engaged in a thermal race for top spot in the West, with the Rockets beating Golden State twice this season so far. (Side note: Curry responded “Ha” the other day when asked who should win the MVP this year, him or Harden. Just “ha.”) Joel Embiid. The fun-loving big man makes his All-Star debut and promises to bring his infectious personality to the game and also his astonishing skills, rare for a seven-footer. Look for Embiid to make a strong big for game MVP and doing so apologetically. His competition could come from Antetokounmpo and either winner would signal a victory for a league looking for yet another superstar. But, the game itself. Will it be taken seriously? “We've talked about it.” said Irving. “Like I said, I think it's more individually based in terms of the competitive fire. But I know that we're pretty excited to be out there and compete and go at one another for a little bit and have a little fun.” Last year, Antetokounmpo was playfully chastised by his teammates for going full-tilt and challenging shots and essentially treating it like a playoff game. It was his first All-Star appearance and he was surprised by the mild tone of the pace. Victor Oladipo, a first-timer this year, doesn’t believe that’ll happen to him. “My competitive nature is going to get the best of me,” he said. The unspoken concern, of course, is injury, although there’s no documented case of a player ever pulling up lame in the game. Imagine the outcry, for example, if the intensity soars and someone grabs a body part. The fallout will be steep, and with that in mind, many coaches tell their players to ease off the gas pedal. “I don’t want anyone to get hurt,” said Casey, “but we want to change the narrative about this game and how it’s played. I find that when players do things half-way or go through the motions, that’s when they’re more liable to get hurt.” And so, with that in mind, with a revamped format and a bit more pocket change for the winner and an audience that would like to see some floor burn for a change, the All-Stars just could make this game interesting. That starts with defense. “The challenge is, if you’re going to play to win, you’re going to compete on the defensive end, especially in transition,” said Casey. “That’s where the all-star game kind of deteriorates. You got to start your transition defense, our one on one defense, and put defense in the game because if you don’t, it will be 160, 170 points. I don’t know if we’re going to change it all in one game, but that’s our goal is to try to be more serious on defense, and not trick passes and trick shots and circus mentality. “These guys can entertain and also play defense and give a more competitive game. They are good enough to pull it off. That’s what I hope to see and what fans hope to see.” Veteran NBA writer Shaun Powell has worked for newspapers and other publications for more than 25 years. You can e-mail him here or follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting. .....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

Bolts get back at Ginebra in the PH Arena to stay alive in the All-Filipino

BOCAUE, Bulacan --- Meralco and Ginebra delivered another classic at the Philippine Arena here. However, unlike Game 7 of the 2017 Governors' Cup Finals, it was the Bolts that took a crucial win Sunday, walking away with an 84-82 win to stay alive in the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup. Jason Ballesteros played hero for Meralco, scoring the go-ahead putback in the final 36 seconds after Chris Newsome and Reynel Hugnatan failed to find the bottom of the net for the Bolts. He also secured a crucial rebound on the other end and drilled one of two free throws with 17 seconds to go to help Meralco pull through. Japeth Aguilar missed a game-winning triple for the Gin Kings to end the contest. "It's just great effort from the guys just knowing the circumstances that had we lost today, we're out of the tournament," head coach Norman Black said. "The guys just came out there and played to get the win," he added. Coming out of nowhere, Ballesteros played 31 minutes and finished with seven points and a career-high 17 rebounds for Meralco. Meanwhile, Garvo Lanete led the Bolts in scoring with 19 points and Anjo Caram dropped 16, also a career high. Hugnatan and Newsome drilled 12 points apiece for the Bolts who are now tied with TNT and Blackwater for 9th place with identical 4-6 records. As for Ginebra, the Gin Kings failed to punch their ticket to the playoffs and are currently stuck in 6th place with a 5-5 mark. Japeth Aguilar led the way for the barangay with 20 points while Scottie Thompson added 17 and 13 rebounds.   The Scores: MERALCO 84 — Lanete 19, Caram 16, Hugnatan 12, Newsome 12, Ballesteros 7, Salva 5, Amer 4, Bono 4, Canaleta 3, Faundo 2, Sedurifa 0, Tolomia 0. GINEBRA 82 — Aguilar 20, Thompson 17, Slaughter 12, Mercado 10, Caguioa 6, Cruz 5, Tenorio 5, Devance 4, Mariano 3, Ferrer 0, Manuel 0. Quarters: 15-20, 45-38, 67-64, 84-82.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

Arellano and San Beda begin best-of-three NCAA women’s volleyball finals

THE defending champions Arellano Lady Chiefs and San Beda Lady Red Spikers get their National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Season 93 women’s volleyball championship encounter going with Game One of their best-of-three series today at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan City. After two rounds of competitive play, left standing are the Lady […] The post Arellano and San Beda begin best-of-three NCAA women’s volleyball finals appeared first on BusinessWorld......»»

Source: Bworldonline BworldonlineCategory: NewsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

Skidding Hotshots seek to reverse losing trend

By Michael Angelo S. Murillo Senior Reporter HAVING lost their last two games in the PBA Philippine Cup, the Magnolia Hotshots are out to reverse the trend and get back to winning when they take on the GlobalPort Batang Pier today in the 7 p.m. main game at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. Winners of five […] The post Skidding Hotshots seek to reverse losing trend appeared first on BusinessWorld......»»

Source: Bworldonline BworldonlineCategory: NewsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

UE should have a ‘win now’ mentality, says Adorador

University of the East's turbulent start in the UAAP Season 80 women's volleyball tournament continued after its fourth straight setback. The loss to Ateneo in four sets, 21-25, 25-18, 25-21, 25-14, was even more disappointing for the Lady Warriors since they failed to sustain their momentum after a stellar opening set. Shaya Adorador said UE has to snap out of its underdog mentality and have the initiative to start thinking about winning and nothing less in the midway point of the first round. "Right now we're winless and our objective is to get out of that mentality that we still haven't won a game," said Adorador in Filipino. "We need to change our mentality." "Our att...Keep on reading: UE should have a ‘win now’ mentality, says Adorador.....»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: Feb 18th, 2018Related News

Mourinho: VAR calls must be 'perfect'

HUDDERSFIELD, England (AP) — Jose Mourinho called on the football authorities to start making video calls "perfect" after his Manchester United was denied a goal while beating Huddersfield 2-0 in the FA Cup on Saturday. Juan Mata's effort late in the first half was disallowed by the video assistant referee for his knee being offside. But it took the VAR, who is always based in an offsite studio for English soccer matches, several minutes to rule the goal out. "It's an experimental period," Mourinho said. "They have to get rid of the bad and make it perfect. "It should be the referee's decision. Why? Because the referee wants to perform well. I don't think they're happy to make mistakes and if they have the VAR to help them make the right decision, I think the referees are probably happy with that. "But if the VAR changes their good decisions for bad decisions, I think they're not happy with that. It was a bit frustrating because the moment I saw (referee) Kevin Friend touch his earpiece, I knew something was going to happen. "That doubt is not the best feeling. If the decision is right, I am super happy with that because I want the truth. Sometimes it goes against me and sometimes in my team's favor. But I heard comments that maybe the linesman was right and not the studio." Huddersfield manager David Wagner said he was against the VAR. "The decision went in our favor but this VAR for me kills the emotion of the game," Wagner said. "This is why I don't like it but I am not the person who makes the decision." Romelu Lukaku scored both goals as United set up a home game with Brighton, a repeat of the 1983 final, in next month's quarterfinals......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

PSG returns to French league comfort zone with 5-2 home win

By Jerome Pugmire, Associated PRess PARIS (AP) — After falling short in the Champions League, Paris Saint-Germain returned to its French league comfort zone and beat Strasbourg 5-2 on Saturday. Edinson Cavani netted twice, and Julian Draxler, Angel Di Maria, and Neymar also scored to ensure PSG stayed 12 points clear of second-place Monaco at the top. But not without a fright. Strasbourg took the lead in the sixth minute and pulled back to 3-2 as PSG continued to show alarming signs of weakness at the back. Strasbourg had a late goal incorrectly ruled out for offside after PSG's defense was again easily breached, although it was already 5-2 by then. PSG lost at Real Madrid 3-1 on Wednesday in the first leg of the last 16. The way PSG capitulated by giving away two late goals heaped pressure on coach Unai Emery over his team selection. "The atmosphere was a bit tense. That's normal," Cavani said. "We have to look forward now. We played well today, although at times we could have been better." Emery was booed by sections of the home crowd when his name was announced over the loudspeaker before the game. Later, Cavani stopped short of giving Emery his personal backing when asked if the under-fire coach has the full support of the players. "We're a team and big teams stick together in the important moments," Cavani said. "That's the only way you can win." Strasbourg beat PSG at home in December, and stunned the crowd at Parc des Princes by taking the lead when midfielder Jean-Eudes Aholou was left completely unmarked near the penalty spot. PSG hit back hard and was 3-1 up after 23 minutes thanks to Draxler, Di Maria and Neymar's 19th in 19 league games. Stephane Bahoken scored against PSG for the second time this season after a quick counterattack. Strasbourg poured forward but the hope didn't last for long. Cavani gave PSG some breathing space with an assured finish in the 72nd, clipping the ball over goalkeeper Alexandre Oukidja, then lobbed him for his league-leading 23rd goal. "It was important to win after Wednesday's match. We have to get our fans ready for the games to come against Marseille (next weekend) and Real Madrid," Emery said. "We have to show we can maintain this level of play against better sides, with all due respect to Strasbourg." To celebrate Chinese New Year, PSG players' names were written in Mandarin on the back of their shirts and a Chinese dragon paraded around the pitch. PSG says it has 1.3 million Chinese followers. In order to better serve the soccer market in Asia, the league match between Nice and PSG on March 18 has been moved forward to 1 p.m. local time (1200 GMT). Marseille players will also have their names in Mandarin for Sunday's home game against Bordeaux at Stade Velodrome. Marseille recently launched an account on Chinese social media site Weibo. ___ OTHER MATCHES Striker Giovanni Sio's second-half equalizer gave Montpellier the point it needed to take fifth place after drawing with Guingamp 1-1. Two goals from newly signed striker Diafra Sakho gave Rennes a 2-2 draw at Caen, which missed two penalties. Saint-Etienne won at Angers 1-0, Troyes beat last-place Metz 1-0, and Amiens drew with Toulouse 0-0 in another relegation scrap. In Sunday's other games, fourth-place Lyon goes to Lille, and Nice hosts Nantes......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

Barcelona wins at Eibar 2-0 before trip to Chelsea in CL

By Joseph Wilson, Associated Press BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Lionel Messi looks ready for London. Barcelona's star helped to set up two goals to beat 10-man Eibar 2-0 on Saturday as the Spanish leaders warmed up for their visit to Chelsea in the Champions League. Barcelona broke its mini-slump of back-to-back draws to remain unbeaten through 24 rounds and extend its advantage over second-place Atletico Madrid to 10 points. Barcelona visits Stamford Bridge on Tuesday in the opening leg of the round of 16. "We will head to the match with confidence," Barcelona midfielder Sergio Busquets said about Chelsea. "We are having a good season, but that won't mean anything now. We are facing a tie against a great team that won its league last season. We know it will be difficult and that we have to play smart for 180 minutes." Eibar showed why it is one of the surprises of the season in Spain by taking the initiative first at Barcelona. But a moment of brilliance by Messi was all it took to swing the match Barcelona's way. Messi's weight-perfect pass threaded past three defenders left Luis Suarez all alone in the 16th minute. Suarez used a feint to bring goalkeeper Marco Dmitrovic to the turf before netting his 17th goal in the competition. Only Messi, with 20, has more. Messi played a big part in Jordi Alba's goal in the 88th, when he forced a save from Dmitrovic and Alba was free to finish it off. Suarez's goal came against the flow of the match. Pressing up the pitch and setting a fast pace, Eibar forwards Fabian Orellana, Takashi Inui and midfielder Joan Jordan threatened the visitors. Orellana damaged his team's chances of a comeback when he earned bookings in the 57th and 66th. The first card was for a a needless tackle that cut down Andres Iniesta. Orellana compounded that mistake when he batted a ball into the air with play stopped and the referee waiting for Eibar to return the ball to Barcelona to take a free kick. Eibar coach Jose Luis Mendilibar was also sent off minutes later for protesting when the referee did not book Suarez for lightly kicking the ball after play stopped for an offside call. Despite playing a man down, Eibar still managed to make Barcelona work. Inui had two attempts that required saves from goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen until Alba secured the three points. "Losing a player hurt them. It came at a moment when the game was tightly contested," Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde said. "It was important to win after the past two matches and knowing how difficult it would be against an Eibar that is having a great season." The loss was only the second for Eibar in its last 13 matches. It remained in seventh place. Atletico hosts Athletic Bilbao on Sunday. ___ SEVILLA AWAITS UNITED Sevilla also won before its Champions League meeting with Manchester United, beating Las Palmas 2-1 in the Canary Islands to move into fifth place. Sevilla hosts United on Wednesday to start their Champions League final-16 tie. ___ LATE TURNAROUND Valencia scored two late goals to snatch a 2-1 win at bottom side Malaga, which was left seven points from safety. Dani Parejo hit the winner with five minutes remaining when he converted a penalty kick after Ignasi Miguel earned a direct red card for pulling down Rodrigo Moreno with only the goalie to beat. Valencia, in third place, moved four points clear of Real Madrid before it visits Real Betis on Sunday. ___ DEPRESSED DEPORTIVO Deportivo lost its second straight match under new coach Clarence Seedorf after falling at Alaves 1-0. Deportivo remained in the relegation zone as its winless streak reached nine rounds......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

Bubba Watson takes the lead at Riviera

By Doug Ferguson, Associated Press LOS ANGELES (AP) — Back to his day job, Bubba Watson started with a tap-in eagle and finished with a 6-under 65 to build a one-shot lead in the Genesis Open. Watson is a two-time winner at Riviera who hasn't won in two years. But he loves L.A., and not just the golf course. Taking in the full entertainment aspect of the city, Watson was eager to play in the celebrity game Friday night during the NBA All-Star weekend. Along with an air ball, he was rejected by Tracy McGrady. He was much better with a club in his hand. Watson was at 10-under 203, one shot ahead of UCLA alum Patrick Cantlay, who holed a 55-foot birdie putt on his last hole for a 69......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

All-Stars collide in LA with teams picked by LeBron, Steph

By Greg Beacham, Associated Press LOS ANGELES (AP) — The NBA All-Star Game added spice to its 67th edition by allowing the captains to pick their teams. Team LeBron vs. Team Steph has replaced the traditional East-West format, shuffling allegiances and turning antagonists into uneasy teammates. But with the world’s best basketball players all converging on Los Angeles, the hungry fans of the hometown Lakers are eager to pick their own dream team as well. For instance, a gathering of a few hundred fans at media day in the Los Angeles Convention Center on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time) caught sight of Paul George, Oklahoma City’s All-Star scorer and a Southern California native. The pro-Lakers crowd immediately launched into a chant of “We want Paul! We want Paul!” at the smiling George, who can be a free agent this summer. From his podium elsewhere in the room, Russell Westbrook — the Thunder’s other All-Star and LA native — snarled with sarcastic anger: “That’s out! He ain’t going nowhere!” The game is never really the thing at the NBA’s All-Star weekend, and that’s particularly true while the show is in Hollywood for the record sixth time. Aside from the new team format in the Sunday (Monday, PHL time) showcase, many of the NBA’s biggest stars are returning home, since they already make their summer homes in LA. Lakers fans are most interested in the potential 2018 free agents who could immediately resurrect the 16-time champion franchise, which is currently stumbling toward its unprecedented fifth consecutive non-playoff season. Lakers fans want George, but they also want LeBron James — and they’ll let both stars know it at Staples Center. James dismissed free agency questions Saturday, just as he has done all season, but his palatial house in Los Angeles is among the reasons Lakers fans believe they’ve got a chance to create their own All-Star team in a few months. But before that, James and Stephen Curry will lead two talent-laden teams at Staples Center for the annual showcase of the NBA’s best. Both captains are cautiously optimistic that this tweaked format will pay off with better play than in other All-Star games, which often turn into pickup games with a fraction of the entertainment value of even the Drew League, the famed pro-am circuit in which many stars participate every summer in South Central LA. “It should be a little bit more competitive, a little bit more intense on the court,” said Curry, the Golden State Warriors’ shooting star. “It means a little more when it’s Team LeBron and Team Steph.” The team selection process wasn’t made public, but the results will be very visible. The decision to keep the draft private disappointed fans — and even a few All-Stars. “I thought it was going to be televised,” Team LeBron center Andre Drummond said. “I thought it would be a cool spinoff: Live, LeBron and Curry picking guys. But hopefully next year they do it.” Curry picked his Golden State teammates Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, but lost Kevin Durant to James. LeBron also tantalizingly picked Kyrie Irving, the Boston guard who campaigned to leave James’ side in Cleveland last summer. Irving said it was “pretty awesome” to be James’ teammate again: “It’s normal. Sorry, I know that sounds like not a lot, but it’s just normal.” And everybody will be curious about what happens when Westbrook reteams with Durant, who ditched him in Oklahoma City in 2016 to win a championship in Oakland last year. James’ original roster has been dramatically altered by injuries to DeMarcus Cousins, John Wall, Kristaps Porzingis and Kevin Love, who all won’t play. But LeBron and Toronto coach Dwane Casey could still roll out a nightmarish lineup featuring, for instance, New Orleans’ Anthony Davis and James alongside Durant, Westbrook and George. Curry and Houston coach Mike D’Antoni could counter with a galaxy of shooting stars including James Harden, Damian Lillard, Thompson, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Curry himself. “I think it’s exciting,” said Harden, the product of nearby Artesia High School in Lakewood. “The All-Star Game, there are a lot of highlights, but we’re trying to win, and we’re going to go out there and prove that we’re trying to win.” Westbrook says this novel game format will “definitely” be more competitive than past editions of the midseason showcase. “My experience, my record with the West, we don’t lose much,” said Westbrook, who came out of Leuzinger High School and UCLA. “So I’m just saying. We usually win. Just saying.”.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 18th, 2018Related News

ONE launches Super Series for stand-up martial arts

ONE Championship is continuing its innovation of the sport of mixed martial arts with the launch of ONE Super Series that will pit stand-up artists against each other. ONE Chairman Chatri Sityodtong said in a conference call that introducion the ONE Super Series is a "massive, game-changing moment for the world of martial arts." The ONE Super Series is exclusive to strikers who practice either of the following disciplines, Muay Thai, Lethwei, Silat, Karate, Tae Kwon Do, Sambo, Kung Fu, Sanda, and Wushu. And these strikers could either fight inside a kickboxing ring and would follow the sport's rules or inside the cage under hybrid rules. "ONE Championship has been a celebrati...Keep on reading: ONE launches Super Series for stand-up martial arts.....»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: Feb 17th, 2018Related News

Pons happy to defer scoring to teammates in win over UE

Bernadeth Pons had her lowest-scoring game for Far Eastern University this season, but the Lady Tamaraws' captain is fine with sharing the offensive limelight with her teammates. FEU's senior hitter had just nine points in FEU's sweep of University of the Philippines, 25-23, 25-23, 24-19, in the UAAP Season 80 women's volleyball tournament and Pons is actually relieved that her teammates were able to fulfill the team's demands. "I'm happy with my scoring because that means everybody can contribute," said Pons in Filipino Saturday at Filoil Flying V Centre. "I even told them that volleyball comes easy when everyone scores." Against UP, Heather Guino-o and Toni Rose Basas carr...Keep on reading: Pons happy to defer scoring to teammates in win over UE.....»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: Feb 17th, 2018Related News

Play Arena of Valor and Win an OPPO F5 this Long-Weekend

OPPO Philippines teamed up with Arena of Valor, the fastest growing 5v5 multiplayer online battle arena in the Philippines, for something exciting this long weekend. From February 16-18, 2018, Arena of Valor will be having a special Lunar Year offer by giving red packets for every 5v5 Grand Battle or Ranked game which contains in-game […].....»»

Source: Metrocebu MetrocebuCategory: NewsFeb 17th, 2018Related News

UAAP VOLLEYBALL: Big first set comeback crucial to FEU s confidence says Pons

For the first time in four games, FEU finally avoided going the distance in the UAAP Season 80 women's volleyball tournament. For the first time in four games, the Lady Tamaraws also finally won a first set. Coincidence? Maybe. But it makes sense really, get off to a strong start and you have the option of not putting yourself through two-hour marathons each time out. However, FEU looked like it was headed for another long day Saturday when the confident Lady Maroons took a 23-19 lead in the opening frame. But the Lady Tamaraws flipped the switch and unloaded six straight points to stun the Lady Maroons. FEU practically took UP's confidence and absorbed it for themselves. After that big-time 25-23 win, it was all Lady Tamaraws from then on. It just had to start from that first set. "Sobrang laking bagay kasi two points na lang matatapos na nila eh," FEU captain Bernadeth Pons said on their deficit in the opening set. "Pero di naman natatapos yung set sa 23 so effort pa rin lahat tapos walang titigil. Masaya ako kasi napanalo namin tong game na to. Lahat ng game namin this season lahat five sets tapos hindi pa kami nananalo ng first set. So sabi ko i-push natin na umpisahan yung first set tapos susunod na yung iba. Yun ginawa namin ngayon, first set pa lang start tayo ng strong tapos tapusin din natin ng strong. Nangyari naman," she added. Perhaps their best performance of the year so far, Pons says FEU's morale should be back up now. Which is big as the Lady Tamaraws prepare for a crucial stretch to end the first round. "Coming from a loss kami sa dalawang game eh, tapos ngayon napanalo namin to tapos may tatlo pa kami sa first round so sobrang laking bagay," she said. "Kasi dito namin mababalik yung confidence ng team," Pons added.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 17th, 2018Related News

Beermen keep top spot after frustrating Aces

It looks like the top seed in the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup is for San Miguel to lose. The three-time defending champion Beermen solidified their hold of the no. 1 spot after a rousing 109-96 win over the Alaska Aces Saturday over at the Batangas City Coliseum. San Miguel erased a 15-point deficit to frustrate its rival Aces. The Beermen thus improved to 7-2 in the standings, half a game ahead of no. 2 Magnolia. Three players scored at least 20 points for the champs with Chris Ross leading the way with 24 points on top of nine assists. Arwind Santos added 21 points and 14 rebounds while Marcio Lassiter also scored 21 to go along with eight boards. June Mar Fajardo finished with 17 points and 18 rebounds. Alaska suffered its second straight loss and dropped to 6-4. Jvee Casio led the Aces with 20 points.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 17th, 2018Related News

Manabat, Kanda lead Foton in opening day win

Games Tuesday (Bacoor Sports Center) 4:15 p.m. —- SLR vs Generika-Ayala 7:00 p.m. -— Cocolife vs Cignal   Dindin Manabat announced her return on a sizzling note as she powered Foton to a 25-19, 22-25, 25-16, 25-22 victory over Generika-Ayala in the opening salvo of the 2018 Chooks to Go-Philippine Superliga (PSL) Grand Prix Saturday at the Ynares Sports Center in Pasig City. Sidelined with a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury last year, the power-hitting Manabat led the Tornadoes' furious run in the third and fourth sets to emerge victorious. Manabat fired eight kills and a game-high five aces to finish with 14 points, while American import Brooke Kanda delivered 17 attacks and two blocks to finish with 21 points for the Tornadoes, who are looking for a rebound after losing the Grand Prix crown to F2 Logistics last year. Canadian reinforcement Elizabeth Wendel tallied 11 points in her debut. Foton lost the battle in the attack zone, 42-44, but it ruled the blocking department, 8-2, and had more aces, 13-6, to underscore their dominance in the match that lasted for one hour and 36 minutes. Still, new head coach Rommel Abella stressed that they are still far from gaining their championship form. “If I’ll put a number on it, I think around 60 to 70 percent pa lang,” said Abella, who took over the slot left by Serbian coach Moro Branislav. “We’re still a bit stiff and jittery. Hopefully, we could eliminate all the mistakes we had. Anyway, this is still a very good start,” he said. Abella added that although he was expecting more from their imports, the collective effort of the Tornadoes was enough to carry them through. “We were expecting a little more,” he said. “But since this is just their first game here in the Philippines, their performance was still acceptable. Hopefully, they can provide us with a little more offense in our next game.” But the day obviously belonged to Manabat. Looking fit and deadly after 10 months of rehabilitation and therapy, Manabat was impressive on both ends, especially in the third set where the Tornadoes erected a 12-point advantage, 20-8, to clinch the set victory and build enough momentum for the deciding set. The Lifesavers hung around and tried to extend the game to a fifth set, 21-23, but Manabat scored on a sharp kill to claim the match point, 24-21, before Kranda connected a strong hit to seal the victory. “All Dindin needs was mind-setting,” said Abella. “We always ask the PT (physical therapist) about the status of her injury and they always say that it’s a hundred percent healed. So, it's a good thing she stepped up in this game.” Darlene Ramdin of Trinidad and Tobago finished with 19 points while Symone Hayden of United States added seven markers for the Lifesavers, who were off to a slow start under the tutelage of new head coach Sherwin Meneses......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 17th, 2018Related News

Stalzer fires 30 points in Petron s debut win

Games Tuesday: (Bacoor Sports Center) 4:15 p.m. —- SLR vs Generika-Ayala 7:00 p.m. -— Cocolife vs Cignal   Petron crushed Sta. Lucia Realty in four sets, 25-21, 18-25, 25-17, 25-20 in the 2018 Chooks to Go-Philippine Superliga (PSL) Grand Prix Saturday at the Ynares Sports Center in Pasig City. Lindsay Stalzer picked up where she left off, erupting for 22 kills, six aces and two blocks for 30 points while Hillary Hurley had 18 markers for the Blaze Spikers, who are eager to avenge their sorry finals meltdown to F2 Logistics last season. “We want to start the season on a high note,” said Petron coach Shaq Delos Santos, whose wards unleashed their fighting form in the third set before going for the kill in the fourth to avoid an opening-day mishap. “This is the kind of game I expect on opening day. I’m glad the girls responded well and embraced the challenge.” Ukrainian Bohdana Anisova provided the spark with 18 points while MJ Philips chipped in 16 markers for the Lady Realtors......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsFeb 17th, 2018Related News

SMB scores

SAN Miguel put the heartbreaking loss behind from its last outing a vented its ire on Alaska with a 109-96 victory in the lone PBA Philippine Cup game at the Batangas City Coliseum last night. The Beermen remained on top of the provisional standings with a 7-2 win-loss record and….....»»

Source: Journal JournalCategory: NewsFeb 17th, 2018Related News