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Tina Charles, Candice Dupree lead WNBA All-Star 2019 reserves

WNBA press release NEW YORK – The New York Liberty’s Tina Charles and the Indiana Fever’s Candice Dupree lead the list of 12 players – six guards and six frontcourt players from across the WNBA – who will serve as reserves in AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019.   The reserves were selected by the league’s head coaches, who voted for three guards, five frontcourt players and four players at either position regardless of conference. The coaches were not able to vote for their own players. Joining Charles and Dupree as frontcourt reserves are the Phoenix Mercury’s DeWanna Bonner, the Minnesota Lynx’ Sylvia Fowles, the Los Angeles Sparks’ Nneka Ogwumike and the Connecticut Sun’s Alyssa Thomas. Reserves at the guard position are the Chicago Sky’s Diamond DeShields, Allie Quigley and Courtney Vandersloot, Minnesota’s Odyssey Sims, the Washington Mystics’ Kristi Toliver,  and the Indiana Fever’s Erica Wheeler. The 10 starters for AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019, announced on July 11, were selected by fans, current players and media. As the two All-Star starters who finished with the most fan votes during WNBA All-Star Voting 2019 presented by Google, Washington’s Elena Delle Donne and the Las Vegas Aces’ A’ja Wilson will serve as team captains and draft the All-Star Game rosters from the pool of players voted as starters and reserves. AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019 featuring Team Delle Donne vs. Team Wilson will be played on Saturday, July 27 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, home of the Aces. The 16th WNBA All-Star Game will be televised live by ABC at 3:30 p.m. ET. Joining Delle Donne and Wilson as starters in the frontcourt are Las Vegas’ Liz Cambage, Phoenix’s Brittney Griner, the Seattle Storm’s Natasha Howard and Connecticut’s Jonquel Jones. The four starting guards are Los Angeles’ Chelsea Gray, Seattle’s Jewell Loyd, Las Vegas’ Kayla McBride and New York’s Kia Nurse. Delle Donne and Wilson will select their respective rosters in the WNBA All-Star Draft by choosing first from the remaining pool of eight starters and then from the pool of 12 reserves.  By virtue of finishing with the most fan votes, Delle Donne will make the first pick in the first round (Starters).  Wilson will have the first pick in the second round (Reserves). Additional details about the All-Star Draft will be announced at a later date. Las Vegas head coach Bill Laimbeer and Washington head coach Mike Thibault have earned spots as the head coaches for AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019. With Las Vegas having clinched the best record in the WNBA through July 12 (10-5, .667), Laimbeer and his staff will coach Team Delle Donne. Thibault, whose Mystics posted the second-best record through July 12 (9-5, .643) will guide Team Wilson. AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019 Reserves - DeWanna Bonner, Mercury (3rd All-Star selection): The WNBA’s leading scorer (19.4 ppg), Bonner was named to the All-Star Game for the second consecutive season after sitting out the 2017 campaign when she gave birth to twins. A two-time WNBA champion with Phoenix (2009, 2014), Bonner began her career by winning WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year honors three straight seasons (2009-11). - Tina Charles, Liberty (7th All-Star selection): Charles, who this season moved into sixth place in WNBA history with 3,014 rebounds, also ranks 12th with 5,727 points. Earlier this year, she added filmmaker to her resume when the documentary she produced about her father Rawlston Charles and his Brooklyn-based record store and music label debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival. - Diamond DeShields, Sky (1st All-Star selection): Chicago’s leading scorer (14.9 ppg), DeShields, the No. 3 overall pick in the 2018 Draft, is one of three Sky guards named to the All-Star Game along with Quigley and Vandersloot. - Candice Dupree, Fever (7th All-Star selection): Now in her 14th WNBA season, Dupree recently moved past Lisa Leslie and into sixth place in league history with 6,267 points. She also ranks eighth in career rebounds with 2,880. - Sylvia Fowles, Lynx (6th All-Star selection): The WNBA’s MVP in 2017 and Finals MVP in 2015 and 2017, Fowles became the WNBA’s career leader in double-doubles (158) this season. She also ranks fourth in league history with 3,201 career rebounds, behind only Rebekkah Brunson (3,356), Tamika Catchings (3,316) and Lisa Leslie (3,306). - Nneka Ogwumike, Sparks (6th All-Star selection): Ogwumike leads the Sparks with 15.5 ppg and 9.5 rpg. The top pick in the 2012 draft, she is one of five No. 1 overall picks in this year’s All-Star Game, along with Tina Charles (2010), Brittney Griner (2013), Jewell Loyd (2015) and A’ja Wilson (2018). - Allie Quigley, Sky (3rd All-Star selection): A two-time WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year (2014, 2015), Quigley has earned three consecutive All-Star appearances since becoming a full-time starter for the Sky in 2017. Quigley won the Three-Point Shooting Contest at the 2018 WNBA All-Star Game in Minnesota. - Odyssey Sims, Lynx (1st All-Star selection): After spending the past two seasons with rival Los Angeles, Sims was acquired by Minnesota from the Sparks via a trade in April. The No. 2 overall pick in the 2014 draft, she leads the Lynx with 15.7 ppg and a career-high 5.4 apg and is the only player in the league ranking in top 10 in scoring and assists. -  Alyssa Thomas, Sun (2nd All-Star selection): Thomas, who made her All-Star debut in 2017, is the Sun’s No. 2 scorer (11.6 ppg) and rebounder (7.2 rpg) behind Jonquel Jones, an All-Star starter. - Kristi Toliver, Mystics (3rd All-Star): An All-Star for the second consecutive year as a member of the Mystics, whom she helped to the WNBA Finals last season, Toliver also represented the Sparks in the 2013 All-Star Game. - Courtney Vandersloot, Sky (2nd All-Star): Vandersloot leads the league with 8.2 assists per game a year after she set a WNBA single-season records with 8.6 apg and 258 total assists. She returns to the All-Star Game for the first time since her rookie season of 2011. - Erica Wheeler, Fever (1st time All-Star): Wheeler is the only undrafted player among the 22 players selected for AT&T WNBA All-Star 2019 and the first undrafted player named to the Game since Erika de Souza in 2014......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 16th, 2019Related News

PBA: Terrence Jones new tropa wants to send him back to the NBA

Over the last couple of seasons, the PBA has seen its share of super imports. Ginebra’s Justin Brownlee immediately comes to mind. Meralco’s Allen Durham and Phoenix’s Eugene Phelps fit in that mold too. Alaska’s Mike Harris is in that list as well. The uber-talented Glen Rice Jr. could have made it if he just got it together. But for the 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup, TNT brought not just any other import. Tired of underperforming for the past few conferences, the KaTropa went ahead and signed former Houston Rockets forward Terrence Jones for the mid-season joust. With Jones, TNT went the super — SUPER — import route and it has been worth every penny for the KaTropa, at least so far.   ROCKET MAN Many former NBA players have played in the PBA before, that’s not a new thing. But what makes Jones special is that he’s at his peak of his powers now as he plays his first stint in the PBA. Jones is a former first-round pick and was a legitimate NBA contributor. In his best NBA season, in 2013-2014 for Houston, Jones started 71 games and had career-high numbers of 12.1 points and 6.9 rebounds per game. This dude is legit. “Oo iba, iba siya talaga,” guard RR Pogoy said of Jones. (Yes, he’s really different). In just one conference, Pogoy and Jones have clicked as teammates. Terrence has admitted that RR is one of his favorite local targets when he’s trying to spot an open teammate when opposing teams double on him. Pogoy admits that Jones is one of the best, if not the best, import he’s ever played with. “Pwedeng-pwede pa siya talaga sa NBA eh. Iba yung skills niya,” he added. (He could still play in the NBA. His skills are just different).   THE DIFFERENCE TNT has ran pretty much the same system for years. Whether you like this team or now, they know what style they want to play andd they identify players that fit that system well. The KaTropa have dominated the PBA without a traditional big man. Ask other teams, they’ve been blindsided and bamboozled by a TNT offense led by diminutive point guards like Jimmy Alapag and Jayson Castro. However, the KaTropa have hit another rough patch. The team hasn’t made it to the PBA semifinals since 2017. Their 2018 campaign was a lot like the horror 2016 year with the only difference being three seasons ago, they actually made it to the semifinals of the Governors’ Cup as a no. 1 seed. Last year, they won zero playoff games and missed the playoffs altogether once so in essence, 2018 was a worse nightmare for the KaTropa. It didn’t help that in the previous All-Filipino, they were practically a missed 24-second violation away from ending the San Miguel Beer Philippine Cup dynasty. The winning formula no longer works for TNT. Or at the very least, it’s not as effective. Enter Terrence Jones. “Malaking tulong talaga siya sa team namin. Kung ano yung kulang samin, parang fit na fit talaga siya eh. Napa-dali na lang yung mga buhay namin sa basketball,” Pogoy said of Jones. (He’s a big help to our team. What we lack, he fits right in. Our basketball lives are easier with him). “Yung rebounding tsaka yung pagka-shot blocker niya [malaking tulong]. Naiilang din yun kalaban namin eh, sa rebound naman naco-control namin kasi may malaki na kami, yun naman talaga kulang namin,” Pogoy added. (His rebounding and his presence as a shot blocker is a huge help). In 10 games so far, Jones is averaging 14.9 rebounds per game. That may not seem much for an import but he’s never had fewer than 10 in a game and has hit a high 22 rebounds. His shot blocking has helped TNT shore up its overall defense as well with Jones averaging 2.9 rejections a game with his three best performances coming against Columbian (7 blocks), Ginebra (6 blocks), and San Miguel (5 blocks). The last two teams feature perhaps the two best frontlines in the league today by a wide margin. Aside from his defensive presences, Jones is a force on offense as well, averaging 34.5 points on close to 50 percent shooting. He’s hit over 30 points eight times and over 40 points four times. Scoring will be a given for a player of his caliber but what sets him apart is his ability to locate open teammates and willingly pass the ball to them. Jones is good for at least four assists in every game and he’s topped out at 16 dimes so far. In 10 games, he’s rounding up to 7.7 assists per outing which leads all imports, and the whole league actually. “Talagang willing passer siya, hinahanap din niya talaga yung mga kasama niya. Kumbaga di niya inaako lahat yung scoring load,” forward Troy Rosario said of his new frontcourt tandem in Jones. (He’s a willing passer. He really tries to find his teammates and he’s not trying to shoulder all the scoring load). “Kami ready pa rin kami lagi. Syempre yung experience niya sa NBA talagang pinapakita niya dito, natutulungan din niya kami kung saan kami dapat lumugar sa plays kasi advanced na siya eh, kahit di na sabihin ni coach alam na niya dapat gawin,” he added. (We’re just ready as locals. He’s really showing his NBA experience here, he’s helping us to where we need to be on plays because he’s so advanced he knows what to do even before coach tells us).   THE LEADER Aside from putting up big numbers across the board, there’s one underrated factor about Terrence Jones that has led to him making a positive impact on TNT. Jones made an effort to be a leader for the KaTropa and his teammates have rallied behind him for sure. The result is in the way they play and the way they win in the Commissioner’s Cup. “I think it’s come to them [TNT locals] listening and understanding that I have a little experience on what it takes to try to win and be a good teammate,” Jones said of his leadership role with the KaTropa and how it worked out. “They listened and understood that and we’ve been having fun ever since,” he added. TNT is full of alpha-level players but Jones’ NBA resume has certainly helped in making them line up behin their import and provide support. The the KaTropa have been running like a well-oiled machince with that set up. “Leadership pa lang niya ang laking tulong na samin. As locals, ginagawa lang namin kung ano dapat namin gawin para maka-contribute din and para matulungan din siya,” Rosario said. (His leadership alone is a big help for us. As locals, we just try to do what we need to do to contribute and to help him out). “Magaling siya, isa talaga siya mga leader namin ngayon. Talagang nili-lift up niya kami, di lang sa salita pati sa gawa,” Pogoy added. (He’s great, he’s one of our leaders now. He really lifts us up not just with words but with action as well)   THE LONG ROAD BACK TO THE ASSOCIATION It would be incredible if TNT ends up having Terrence Jones as a resident import the same way Ginebra has Justin Brownlee or Phoenix has Eugene Phelps or Meralco having Allen Durham. However, the KaTropa know that their super import still has a good shot of returning to the NBA and they plan on helping him get back there. “Syempre goal namin makapasok sa playoffs, nagawa na namin yun. Ang susunod na step is next round sa playoffs. Malaking tulong din yun sa kanya kasi yung pangalan niya bumabango ulit,” Rosario said. (Our goal is to make the playoffs and we did that. Now the next step is to get to the next round of the playoffs. That’s a big help for him to get his name out there again). “Preparation na rin kasi alam namin na after dito, meron siyang invites sa mga training camps,” he added. (It’s also good preparation because we know after this, he has some invites to camps). With TNT at 9-1 and a top-2 seed in the playoffs, the team is certainly favored to win in the Commissioner’s Cup. And perhaps one of Jones’ best ways to once again get some traction is to put up great numbers for a championship team in a big league like the PBA. There’s a big check mark on the numbers part and while he can’t win a title by his lonesome, Jones has an entire tropa that has his back. “Lalo na kung mag-champion kami, mabango yung pangalan niya di ba?” Pogoy said. (If we win the championship, that’s good for his name, right?). “Marami naman nags-scout diyan, nakikita siya and maganda pinapakita niya. Feel ko [kaya bumalik sa NBA],” he added. (There’s people that scout him, seeing him and how good he’s been performing. I feel [he can make it back to the NBA]). Of course, winning a PBA championship does not directly award Jones and NBA roster spot. However, he appreciates that his team backs him up in that regard. Right now TNT’s super import is just concerned about playing well with his team and winning more games. “I appreciate it, I wish nothing but the best for all my teammates as well,” Jones said. “I hope you guys see that while we’re playing, we’re smiling and enjoying one another when anybody scores. It’s just like a family atmosphere,” he added.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 16th, 2019Related News

PBA (July 17 - 21): With top seed in sight, TNT is the team to watch late in Commissioner’s Cup

The 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup playoffs is almost set, with just one more team missing to complete the post-season puzzle. But while the top-2 seeds have been decided for a good amount of time now, the no. 1 team in the conference is yet to be finalized. TNT holds the key and that’s why the KaTropa are the team to watch in the PBA’s set of games for July 17-21. At 9-1, TNT will decide which team enters the playoffs as the number one seed. If the KaTropa beat Magnolia for the very last game of the elimination round, they keep first place. If they lose, Northport takes over as no. 1 and TNT drops to second place. It’s that simple. The top-2 seeds then see action in the playoffs on Sunday, win there once and it’s on to the semifinals. Jul 17 @ Smart Araneta 4:30 p.m. San Miguel vs. Meralco 7:00 p.m. TNT vs. Magnolia July 19 @ MOA Arena 7:00 p.m. Playoff for 8th place July 20 @ MOA Arena Quarterfinals for 3 vs. 6 and 4 vs. 5 (Game 1 of best-of-3) July 21 @ TBA Quarterfinals for 1 vs. 8 and 2 vs. 7 (Top-2 seeds hold 2x-to-beat)   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 16th, 2019Related News

Tropical Depression Falcon to bring more rain during monsoon season

The Tropical Depression (TD) Falcon will intensify the southwest monsoon experienced in the whole of Mindanao, an official of Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said......»»

Source: Davaotoday DavaotodayCategory: NewsJul 16th, 2019Related News

Summer League winds down, and now, maybe, some NBA rest

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press They'll hand out T-shirts to the Summer League winners following the championship game between Memphis and Minnesota in Las Vegas on Monday night (Tuesday, PHL time), and then things will finally slow down a bit in the NBA. Maybe. And probably not for long. It's been a hectic month since Toronto won the NBA championship and the so-called offseason commenced. Already this summer, 18 current and former All-Stars have changed franchises, and that number will rise to 19 if Vince Carter finds a new home for his final season. Recent NBA Finals MVPs Kawhi Leonard, Kevin Durant and Andre Iguodala all were among those on the move. And another three past finals MVPs — Dwyane Wade, Dirk Nowitzki and Tony Parker — all retired. So when next season begins, very little will look the same. "I think there's going to be a lot of parity," Brooklyn coach Kenny Atkinson said. "That's my gut." NBA Commissioner Adam Silver expected this summer to be loaded with player movement, and wasn't complaining about so many big names — Durant, Leonard, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook, Anthony Davis, Paul George, Kyrie Irving, Al Horford, Jimmy Butler and many more — needing to file change-of-address cards. "At the end of the day, it's positive for the league," Silver said. "I will say, though, I'm mindful of this notion of balance of power, and I think it applies in many different ways. An appropriate balance of power between the teams and the players ... at the end of the day, you want to make sure you have a league where every team is in a position to compete." There were some clear winners in free agency: Brooklyn (who got Durant and Irving), the Los Angeles Clippers (who got George and Leonard) and the Los Angeles Lakers (who got Davis) were among them. It could be argued that the Oklahoma City Thunder won as well — no, they won't be as good this season as they were this past season after trading George and Westbrook, but general manager Sam Presti has enough draft picks now to enjoy flexibility for years. The losers are clear as well: Toronto lost Leonard and Danny Green and Golden State lost Durant, so last season's finalists certainly aren't favorites to be this season's finalists. It's also easy to say that New York lost after coming up empty on the big-name free agents, but the Knicks got plenty of good players on deals that ensure the team will have money again next summer. A lookahead at what's coming, and some notes on what's gone down: SO NOW WHAT? Any NBA withdrawal will really only last about three weeks, until roughly three dozen players return to Las Vegas for USA Basketball's training camp leading up to the FIBA World Cup in China that starts on Aug. 31. San Antonio's Gregg Popovich is coaching the Americans, assisted by Golden State's Steve Kerr, Atlanta's Lloyd Pearce and Villanova's Jay Wright. Zion Williamson, knee permitting, may take part in camp as one of the young players brought in to help the more-established pros get ready. If Williamson impresses, he may get a shot at joining the varsity club. Also, this season's NBA schedule is likely to come around the second week of August, if recent years are any indicator. WHO'S LEFT? Plenty of free agents remain unsigned, and that'll still be the case even in September as training camps get ready to open. It's still hard to see the Thunder keeping Paul, acquired in the Westbrook trade to Houston, so expect at least one more blockbuster trade before too long. Or can a player who is owed $121 million over the next three seasons be bought out? Stay tuned. Carter wants to come back for a 22nd NBA season, which would be a league record. If he gets into a game after Jan. 1, he'll also become the first NBA player to appear in four different decades. Jamal Crawford remains out there as well, and contenders should be calling him. LOADED WEST Philadelphia, Boston, Brooklyn, Indiana and Miami all likely got better in the East. Milwaukee kept most of its team that won an NBA-best 60 games. The East will be good. The West might be bloody. The Clippers, the Lakers, Houston, Golden State, Denver, Utah, Portland and San Antonio could end up as the eight playoff teams in the Western Conference. It's plausible; they're probably the most realistic eight picks right now. But at least four of those teams — most of them with superstar duos that are all the rage now — won't be in the second round of next season's playoffs. LONGEVITY AWARD For now, Golden State's Stephen Curry is the longest-tenured player under contract to one team. He's entering his 11th season with the Warriors. With Nowitzki (21 seasons with Dallas) retired, Mike Conley (12 seasons with Memphis) traded to Utah and Westbrook (11 seasons with Oklahoma City) traded to Houston, no current player has had a longer uninterrupted run with one team than Curry. But if Udonis Haslem re-signs with Miami, it'll be his 17th season with the Heat. THE NUMBERS Including the $196 million extension for Portland's Damian Lillard, a $170 million extension for Denver's Jamal Murray and another in-the-works $170 million extension for Philadelphia's Ben Simmons, NBA teams have committed to spend roughly $4 billion in new deals that were struck in the last three weeks alone. And that's with 100 more signings to come, at least. That $4 billion figure is twice what the total payroll was a decade ago for every team in the league, combined......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 15th, 2019Related News

NCAA 95 s must-see matchups for July 16 to 19

These are the NCAA 95 Men's Basketball Tournament games from July 16 to 19 all of us just CAN NOT miss! TUESDAY, 2:00 p.m., Mapua vs San Sebastian Mapua pushed Perpetual to the limit in its season opener before just falling short. The Cardinals look to do the same against another playoff hopeful in San Sebastian – but that’s easier said than done with both RK Ilagan and Allyn Bulanadi back in full strength for the Golden Stags. The Cardinals and the Golden Stags do battle and y'all can watch on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23, ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 166, LIGA SkyCable Channel 86, LIGA HD SkyCable Channel 183, and iWant as well as livestream. TUESDAY, 6:00 p.m., Jr. Altas vs Jr. Blazers Perpetual lived up to its hype by dominating defending champion Mapua to start the season. Up next in the Jr. Altas’ quest to legitimize themselves is runner-up CSB-LSGH which itself is out to prove that its youth may very well be served sooner than later. The Jr. Altas and the Jr. Blazers do battle and y'all can watch VIA LIVESTREAM. THURSDAY, 4:00 p.m., San Beda vs EAC San Beda, with back-to-back wins to open its title defense, travels to San Marcelino to take on EAC, fresh off an upset of LPU, right in its very own home court for Season 95’s very first NCAA on Tour. The Red Lions and the Generals do battle and y'all can watch on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23, ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 166, LIGA SkyCable Channel 86, LIGA HD SkyCable Channel 183, and iWant as well as livestream. FRIDAY, 10:00 a.m., Jr. Pirates vs Red Robins LPU is, at long last, poised to make a breakthrough in the NCAA Jrs. Mac Guadana, John Barba, and the rest of the Jr. Pirates are eyeing to make their biggest statement yet when they challenge defending champion Mapua. The Jr. Pirates and the Red Robins do battle and y'all can watch VIA LIVESTREAM. FRIDAY, 12:00 p.m., Perpetual vs Letran It will be a battle between playoff teams from last season as well as title contenders for this season when Edgar Charcos and Perpetual wage war with Jerrick Balanza and Letran. The Altas and the Knights do battle and y'all can watch on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23, ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 166, LIGA SkyCable Channel 86, LIGA HD SkyCable Channel 183, and iWant as well as livestream. FRIDAY, 2:00 p.m., LPU vs Mapua LPU is coming off the first shocker of the season, sinking to EAC. Of course, the Pirates want nothing more than to bounce back, but will have to do it against a Mapua side seeking to make noise with its youthful lineup. The Pirates and the Cardinals do battle and y'all can watch on ABS-CBN S+A Channel 23, ABS-CBN S+A HD Channel 166, LIGA SkyCable Channel 86, LIGA HD SkyCable Channel 183, and iWant as well as livestream......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 15th, 2019Related News

Join the Philippine Pro Gaming League 2019 Mobile Legends Corporate League

Gather the best players in the office for a chance to compete among the best in the region! As part of this second season of the Philippine Pro Gaming League 2019, Globe Telecom and MET Events have announced a special Mobile Legends: Bang Bang corporate league. Aspiring competitive gamers and avid fans of Mobile Legends: […].....»»

Source: Metrocebu MetrocebuCategory: NewsJul 15th, 2019Related News

Report: Ben Simmons doubtful for FIBA World Cup

NBA.com staff report Ben Simmons, who teased a run with Australia at the FIBA World Cup, has become "doubtful" to play in the upcoming tournament, per a report by ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. Get your first look at the NBA’s top Rookies during NBA Summer League LIVE on NBA League Pass! The move will clear Simmons to prep fully for his upcoming season with the Philadelphia 76ers, who are expected to be a leading contender in the East. Their run to the conference semifinals last season ended in a Game 7 defeat on Kawhi Leonard's four-bounce buzzer-beater, and Jimmy Butler was ultimately swapped for Josh Richardson in a sign-and-trade that cleared space for the acquisition of erstwhile rival Al Horford. Philadelphia 76ers star Ben Simmons is "doubtful" to play for Australia in the FIBA World Cup this summer, his agent Rich Paul tells ESPN. Simmons is more likely now to spend his full offseason preparing only for the Sixers season -- free of national team responsibilities. — Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 13, 2019 In 2018-19, Simmons averaged 16.9 points, 8.8 rebounds and 7.7 assists as a 6-foot-10 point guard, earning his first All-Star appearance after a Kia Rookie of the Year-winning campaign. Yet his lacking outside shot -- 0-for-17 from three-point range across two seasons -- limited his playmaking ability during the playoffs, and improving there provides the obvious lane for an even more significant leap heading into Year Three......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 15th, 2019Related News

Report: Nets agree to deal with David Nwaba

NBA.com staff report The Brooklyn Nets have signed free agent guard David Nwaba, according to a report from Shams Charania of The Athletic. Free agent guard David Nwaba has agreed to a two-year deal with the Brooklyn Nets, league sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium. — Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) July 14, 2019 The 26-year-old has risen from undrafted rookie to consistent contributor during his three-year NBA career. He played with the Cleveland Cavaliers last season and averaged 6.5 points and 3.2 rebounds in 19.3 minutes over 51 games. Prior to the Cavaliers, he played with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers. Get your first look at the NBA’s top Rookies during NBA Summer League LIVE on NBA League Pass! Nwaba likely will be one of the final moves for the Nets after a busy offseason headlined by their deals with Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and Deandre Jordan......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 15th, 2019Related News

Giannis tells Bucks fans: Please don t call me MVP

NBA.com staff report The Milwaukee Bucks gave their hometown fans the chance to celebrate the Kia MVP season of Giannis Antetokounmpo at a rally in downtown Milwaukee on Sunday (Monday, PHL time). Get your first look at the NBA’s top Rookies during NBA Summer League LIVE on NBA League Pass! The 24-year-old Antetokounmpo spoke at the celebration and asked that the fans stop calling him MVP so he can remain focused on bringing a championship to Milwaukee. “After today, please don’t call me MVP... until I win it again next year!” - @Giannis_An34 pic.twitter.com/vNv5qc7Nwa — Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) July 14, 2019 "After this day -- July 14 -- please, please, please do me this favor so I can be a better player, lead this team to a championship: please don't call me MVP," Antetokounmpo told the crowd of thousands in Milwaukee. "Please, after this day don't call me MVP until I win it again next year." Antetokounmpo -- who averaged career-highs with 27.7 points, 12.5 rebounds, 5.9 assists, 1.5 blocks and 1.3 steals over 72 games last season -- said on Saturday he believes he is only at "60 percent" of his potential. He finished his speech by saying, "Let's go get the big trophy now!" Ready for the MVP!! pic.twitter.com/blShyuiYOL — Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) July 14, 2019 ???? @Giannis_An34 is presented with the MVP Trophy!! pic.twitter.com/BEvAFLtX0G — Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) July 14, 2019 “I want to thank God... for blessing me with this amazing talent and allowing me to get drafted by the Milwaukee Bucks.” - @Giannis_An34 pic.twitter.com/gVrWVOVcsQ — Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) July 14, 2019 “Let’s go get the big trophy now!!” - @Giannis_An34 pic.twitter.com/vWLmcOs3Ha — Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) July 14, 2019 MVP! MVP! MVP! pic.twitter.com/mHE7WVhjLG — Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) July 14, 2019.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 15th, 2019Related News

Despite exit, NLEX hopeful

The Road Warriors ended with the league’s worst record at 3-8 but were able to win two of their final three games to gain some momentum before the season-ending conference......»»

Source: Tempo TempoCategory: NewsJul 14th, 2019Related News

MPBL- Riel Cervantes, Pampanga Lanterns gearing up for big battle against Manila Stars on July 19

First back-to-back victories of season keeps Pampanga motivated ahead of next game vs Manila FOX Sports Philippines RIEL Cervantes and the rest of the Pampanga Giant Lanterns-ADG Group of Companies h.....»»

Source: Manilanews ManilanewsCategory: NewsJul 14th, 2019Related News

EAC hero Jethro Mendoza makes mark as NCAA 95 s first Player of the Week

Just a week into the NCAA Season 95 Men’s Basketball Tournament, graduating guard Jethro Mendoza has already given Emilio Aguinaldo College a moment to remember. Mendoza hit the go-ahead layup with 1.5 seconds remaining as EAC pulled off a monumental 84-82 stunner over back-to-back runner-up Lyceum last Friday at Filoil Fying V Centre. That game-winner alone was more than enough for the sweet-shooting guard to earn the season's first Chooks-to-Go Collegiate Press Corps NCAA Player of the Week award. Along with the shot that sank the league heavyweight, Mendoza poured eight of his team-high 21 points in the closing stretch, towing the Generals to their first win against the Pirates since 2016 and biggest triumph overall since beating eventual champion Letran back in 2015.     He buried six triples to anchor his scoring explosion and also tallied four rebounds, two assists, and a steal against zero turnovers in 26 minutes of action.  “Sabi lang namin, atin ‘to, lalaban tayo hanggang matapos. Kahit na nakakahabol na sila, gawin lang namin ‘yung tama,” said Mendoza, who made sure EAC repelled Lyceum’s fightback from 18 points down.   It also helped that first-year head coach Oliver Bunyi has full trust in his deadshot shooter.  “I was telling them, even if Jethro is doing 0-of-10 in the first part, I will still trust him to take the ball outside. That’s his job. ‘Yun naman, naging successful siya,” said Bunyi.  Mendoza bested Jerrick Balanza of Letran, RK Ilagan of San Sebastian, Jaycee Marcelino of Lyceum, Edgar Charcos of Perpetual, and the San Beda troika of James Canlas, Evan Nelle and Donald Tankoua for the weekly award handed out by scribes from print and online covering the beat......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 14th, 2019Related News

PVL: Gusto kong mag-give back sa Army -- Gonzaga

ANTIPOLO -- Jovelyn Gonzaga knew that she had to start from scratch to regain her old form and reintroduce herself after a long layoff. Two years removed from competitive volleyball, the PacificTown Army lefty opposite spiker did her best to contribute to the Lady Troopers’ cause. It was not a rosy road for the celebrated Ilongga, who battled a devastating knee injury that kept her from playing since 2017. Back on court with her Army comrades, Gonzaga was a shadow of her former self but it didn’t stop her from displaying her unquestionable heart throughout the Premier Volleyball League Season 3 Reinforced Conference.      It’s no wonder, the former national team member burst into tears after landing the bronze-medal clinching ace in the Lady Troopers’ 18-25, 25-16, 20-25, 25-15, 15-13, win on Sunday in the best-of-three battle for third decider against BanKo at the Ynares Sports Center here.        “Kasi di ba kakabalik ko lang sa laro? Gusto ko maglaro sa Army, sobrang support ng Army sa akin and at the same time ang tagal na naming di naglalaro,” said Gonzaga. PacificTown Army, just like Gonzaga skipped, competitive volleyball as a team for almost three years. Coming into the league as newcomers the Lady Troopers showed the field that they can still pull the trigger. Gonzaga though playing below 100% of her vintage form, delivered what was needed of her.   “Gusto ko talagang mag-give back sa Army sa pagpayag sa akin pag intindi sa case ko,” said Gonzaga, who is also playing in the Philippine Superliga for Cignal. “Gusto ko every time ang ano ko talaga is to give back, na every game ko para sa Army para sa mga sumusuporta at mga naniniwala sa Army.” Down 1-2 in the series decider, the Lady Troopers needed a great comeback. Gonzaga knew she had to contribute.        “Sobrang sarap sa feeling kasi ang mentality ko lang sa loob ng court, though hindi ako nasiset-an lagi, ang mentality ko kung saan ako makakapa-gstep up para makatulong sa team,” said Gonzaga. “’Yun talaga ang focus ko receive, depensa, blocking, service so thankful ako kay Papa God na sa duration ng game nagawa ko yung part ko sa team.” After forcing a deciding set, the Army found itself trailing, 6-10. The Lady Troopers slowly cut their deficit before taking a 13-12 lead.   Ukrainian Lena Lymareva-Flink broke a 13-13 deadlock before Gonzaga heroic series-clinching ace. “So hanggat maaari, this time, di ako papayag na di kami mapasama, manalo sa third spot,” she said. “So nung time na ‘yun ang mentality ko lang talaga is i’ll give my best na para makatulong at maipanalo yung laban.” Win the game and the bronze she did.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles  .....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 14th, 2019Related News

PVL: Angels fly high, claim Reinforced Conference crown

ANTIPOLO --- PetroGazz denied Creamline of a three-peat after completing a come-from-behind Finals series win on Sunday to claim its breakthrough Premier Volleyball League Season 3 Reinforced Conference title. Celebrated scoring duo Wilma Salas of Cuba and Janisa Johnson of the United States delivered the same performance they have been bringing the whole conference to power the Angels to a 25-15, 28-30, 25-23, 25-19 win in the best-of-three series decider at the packed Ynares Sports Center here.    Tied at 14 in the fourth set, PetroGazz displayed great team effort with Johnson and Salas conniving with teh Angels locals led by Jonah Sabete, Cherry Nunag, Jeanette Panaga, setter Djanel Cheng and libero Cienne Cruz for a 10-3 scoring spurt to reach match point, 24-17. The Cool Smashers saved two championship points before Johnson sealed their reign with a kill.    Salas  pounded her way to 30 points with 26 attacks and four kill blocks with seven excellent receptions while Finals Most Valuable Player Johson scored 23 markers on 19 spikes, two aces and a pair of kill blocks for PetroGazz. Panaga finished with 10 points while Nunag and Sabete got eight and six markers, respectively, for the Angels. "Answered prayers. These two imports namin played a big role but again siyempre as a team talaga di naman namin makukuha ito basta-basta kung walang help ng locals," said PetroGazz coach Arnold Laniog. "But the moment na nag-commit talaga sila doon sa goal namin, sabi ko 'Atin na di na talaga papakawalan.'"   The Angels escaped a tight third frame, hanging tough in the closing stretch after a 22-22 deadlock. Creamline’s Venezuelan import Ale Blanco put too much power on her attack off an overreception before reigning Most Valuable Player Alyssa Valdez was denied by PetroGazz’s defensive wall as the Angels took a 24-22 lead. Michele Gumabao saved a set point on the next play before Salas’ hammer to end the frame.         PetroGazz forced the decider after coming back from a set down to prevail over Creamline, 15-25, 25-22, 25-22, 25-12, in Game 2 on Saturday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. The Cool Smashers drew first blood, 24-26, 25-16, 25-16, 25-22, on Wednesday. After dropping the opening set, Creamline saved two set points in the second frame before taking a 25-24 lead. The Cool Smashers took three more set points before the Angels tied it at 28. Thai import Kuttika Kaepwin broke the deadlock before Jonah Sabete surrendered the frame with an attack error.    Valdez had 22 points off 18 kills, three kill blocks and an ace while Kaewpin and Risa Sato scored 17 and 10 markers, respectively, in a losing cause for Creamline.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 14th, 2019Related News

Davis confident Lakers roster can go up against anybody

    LOS ANGELES, USA – Anthony Davis said the Los Angeles Lakers will be capable of challenging for the NBA championship immediately next season as the six-time All-Star was formally unveiled by the organization on Saturday, July 13 (Sunday, July 14, Philippine time). The 26-year-old superstar is set to form a potent ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsJul 14th, 2019Related News

Halep wins Wimbledon, stops Williams bid for 24th Slam

By Howard Fendrich, Associated Press WIMBLEDON, England (AP) — Clutching her trophy 20 minutes after becoming Wimbledon's champion, Simona Halep checked out the board inside Centre Court that lists tournament winners. Below all of the mentions of Serena Williams, her opponent in Saturday's final, there already was inscribed: "Miss S. Halep." Halep was not concerned with preventing Williams from winning a 24th Grand Slam title. All Halep cared about was winning her first at the All England Club. And she played pretty much perfectly. On top of her game right from start to finish, Halep overwhelmed Williams 6-2, 6-2 in stunning fashion for her second major championship. The whole thing took less than an hour as Williams lost her third Slam final in a row as she tries to equal Margaret Court's record for most major trophies in tennis history. "She literally played out of her mind. Congratulations, Simona. It was a little bit 'a deer in the headlights' for me," Williams said. "So, I mean, whenever a player plays that amazing, you just kind of have to take your hat off and give them a nod of the head." How good was the No. 7-seeded Halep? She made a mere three unforced errors, a remarkably low total and 23 fewer than Williams. Not bad for someone who has been frank about how jittery she has gotten in past big matches and began the day having lost nine of 10 matchups against Williams. But after losing each of her first three major finals, Halep now has won two straight, including at last year's French Open. "Well, I had nerves. My stomach was not very well before the match," said Halep, a 27-year-old Romanian, "but I knew there is no time for emotions. I just came on court and I gave my best." Couldn't have been any better, really. Williams also lost in straight sets against Angelique Kerber in the Wimbledon final a year ago, and against Naomi Osaka at the U.S. Open last September. The 37-year-old American hasn't won a tournament since the 2017 Australian Open, when she set the professional-era record of 23 Grand Slam championships (Court won 13 of her titles against amateur competition). Williams was pregnant when she won in Australia and then took more than a year off the tour; her daughter, Olympia, was born in September 2017. Since returning to tennis, Williams has dealt with injuries but still managed to remain among the game's elite. In part because of a bad left knee, she only had played 12 matches all season until Wimbledon. "Just got to keep fighting," Williams said, "and just keep trying." Didn't take long on Saturday for Halep to demonstrate this was not going to be easy for Williams. Not by any means. Showing off the talents and traits that once lifted her to No. 1 in the rankings, Halep never really gave Williams a chance to get into the match. Halep tracked down everything, as is her wont. She didn't merely play defense, though, managing to go from retrieving an apparent point-ending stroke by Williams to lashing a winner of her own in a blink. Her returns were exceptional, repeatedly getting back serves that left Williams' racket at 115 mph or more. On this cloudy, cool afternoon, with the temperature in the low 70s (low 20s Celsius), Halep began with a pair of service breaks and even delivered the match's first ace, at 106 mph, which put her out front 4-0 after 11 astonishing minutes. Halep won 14 of the first 18 points, with many in the crowd roaring for each of the rare ones that went Williams' way. Halep produced eight winners before a single unforced error, avoiding a miscue until the seventh game. Williams, in stark contrast, came out looking a bit tight, short-arming shots and accumulating nine unforced errors before conjuring up a single winner. She spoke after her semifinal victory about trying to remain calm on court, and that she did, even in the face of a player who was at her very best. Williams would place a hand on her hip. Or put a palm up and look at her guest box, as if thinking, "What can I do?" Williams' greatest show of emotion came after she stretched for a forehand volley winner on the second set's second point. She leaned forward and yelled, "Come on!" But the comeback never came. Halep broke to lead 3-2 in that set when Williams pushed a backhand long, and there wasn't much left from there. Halep only had been as far as the semifinals once at Wimbledon until now. But she was determined to change that and said she told the locker-room attendants at the beginning of the tournament she wanted to grab a title to earn lifetime membership in the All England Club. "So here I am," she said Saturday, the fortnight done, her trophy won. "It was one of my motivations before this tournament. So now I am happy.".....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 14th, 2019Related News

Hamilton denied Brit GP pole by Bottas, takes on negativity

By Rob Harris, Associated Press SILVERSTONE, England (AP) — By only six milliseconds — 0.006 — Lewis Hamilton was left in an unusual position on Saturday: Missing out on pole for the British Grand Prix. The pause was a lot longer when the Formula One leader was later surprised to be asked why "people question your Britishness" in the post-qualifying news conference. Look around Silverstone at the flags and banners and there is little doubt who the home crowd of more than 100,000 wants to win on Sunday. But after being outpaced by Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas, Hamilton will not start from the front of the grid at the British GP for the first time since 2014. "It wasn't the best of qualifying sessions," Hamilton said, "but it is a long race tomorrow." It is a race Hamilton is trying to win for a record sixth time, further cementing the racing excellence of Britain's five-time world champion. But Hamilton still has to shake off some negativity. Hamilton was quizzed by a reporter from Britain's Guardian newspaper on why there is a "contention because people say you live in Monaco and your accent isn't maybe as British as others because you spend a lot of time in the U.S." "I don't have a good answer for that," Hamilton replied. "It is crazy because I remember growing up and watching Jenson Button and all the youngsters coming through and everyone migrated to Monaco. Nobody ever said anything about it. But, of course, when I did, they had something to say. "No matter how often that you go abroad or elsewhere in the world you come back to the U.K., see the countryside, and this great history of Formula One and motorsport and I see all my family who are also here and this feels where my heart is. I am fully British." The Silverstone circuit is also bedecked with Hamilton banners and Union Jack flags featuring his name. "Whilst there will be negative views, I feel every day there is an opportunity to turn those who have a negative view," Hamilton said. "I guess over time I will do more and more positive things for the country. I go to all these races and I lift the British flag proudly, and there is no one else in this sport that has raised it so high. At the moment it is not enough. I will keep looking for what else I can do." Having a 31-point lead in the drivers' standings shows Hamilton is on the right track. Escaping the F1 bubble by heading to California last week helped Hamilton. But Nico Rosberg, who had a four-year rivalry with Hamilton as Mercedes teammates, said such an approach wouldn't have worked for him. "Lewis is partying in Los Angeles and is the best driver in the world," Rosberg said at the central England circuit. "If I had been travelling the way he does, I would be 10th on the grid for Mercedes." But the German won the world championship only once, in 2016, before retiring. "I do have five world titles and they didn't come on their own," Hamilton said. "Valtteri parties way more than me. When I started doing the travel and focusing on these other things there was always the issue and comments and the pressure of having to arrive and deliver the same. "It took time to break that mold and I have done it time and time and time again. My preparation comes first and I have felt fantastic all weekend. The pressure is high being that it is a home grand prix and I don't look at that lightly. I prepare the best way I can ... and that is what led me to five world titles." And also victories in six of the nine races this season after shaking off the challenge from Bottas, who won two of the first four events. Bottas is back on pole for the first time since the fifth grand prix in Spain in May. Behind the Mercedes duo on the grid on Sunday will be Ferrari's Charles Leclerc, who qualified in third, and Max Verstappen of Red Bull......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 14th, 2019Related News

Serena Williams loses her 3rd consecutive Grand Slam final

By Howard Fendrich, Associated Press WIMBLEDON, England (AP) — The Centre Court crowd kept roaring whenever Serena Williams would win a point in the Wimbledon final, seemingly trying to will her to make things interesting against Simona Halep. Never happened. Instead of earning an eighth title at Wimbledon and record-equaling 24th overall at Grand Slam tournaments, Williams fell one victory short yet again, beaten with surprising ease by Halep 6-2, 6-2 Saturday. Williams has now lost her past three appearances in major finals — and five of her last seven. There's no shame in repeatedly making it to championship matches, of course, but it used to be rather unusual to see her come up just short like this: Williams won 21 of the first 25 Slam finals of her career. "I'm always expected to win," Williams said. That is true. Still, it was the seventh-seeded Halep who grabbed ahold of this match and never let go, finishing with three unforced errors to Williams' 26. Halep created problems by repeatedly tracking down Williams' shots and forcing the 37-year-old American to hit another one and another one and another one to win a point. "I definitely knew that she was just playing her heart out. I felt like, 'OK, what do I need to do to get to that level?'" Williams said. "I don't know if there's anything I could have done differently." After entering the final with a tournament-high 45 aces, Williams only managed two on Saturday. She was broken in half of her eight service games. Halep had a lot to do with that. "I feel like I'm still incredibly competitive or else I wouldn't really be out here, per se," Williams said. "For the most part, I feel like I'm on the right track. I'm just going in the right direction in terms of getting back to where I need to be." She hasn't won a title of any sort since the 2017 Australian Open, when she was pregnant. That was Slam trophy No. 23, breaking a tie with Steffi Graf for the most in the professional era. It also moved Williams within one of Margaret Court's total, although Court won 13 of her 24 major titles before professionals were admitted to Grand Slam tournaments, while all 23 of Williams' major titles have come in the Open era, which began in 1968. Since returning to the tour last season after her daughter was born on Sept. 1, 2017, Williams has reached the finals at three of six major tournaments she entered, defeated in straight sets each time. A year ago, she was the runner-up at Wimbledon to Angelique Kerber, and then the runner-up at the U.S. Open to Naomi Osaka in a final that descended into chaos when Williams was penalized a game for arguing with the chair umpire. Williams recently revealed that she saw a therapist after that episode and sent Osaka a written apology. She's also dealt with a series of injuries and arrived in England having contested only 12 tour-level matches in all of 2019. Just four of the other 127 women in the Wimbledon field had fewer; 105 had at least twice as many. After losing to 20-year-old American Sofia Kenin in the third round of the French Open, Williams stuck around in Paris for medical treatment on her left knee. By the time she began preparing in earnest for Wimbledon, about 1½ weeks before the start of play, she was pain-free. "I feel like I'm just really on this journey of just doing the best that I can," Williams said Saturday, "playing the best that I can when I can." According to the WTA's website, women's tennis pioneer Billie Jean King said recently that she would like to see what Williams could do on the court if she were to put "everything else aside" and "focus on what's necessary" for her tennis. King added: "If she's happy doing it this way, then that's fine. It's whatever makes her happy — it's not about us." The last question of Williams' post-match news conference referenced those comments and asked for a reaction. "The day I stop fighting for equality and for people that look like you and me," Williams said, "will be the day I'm in my grave.".....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 14th, 2019Related News

Anthony Davis joins Lakers with championship plans

By Greg Beacham, Associated Press EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) — Anthony Davis' year of uncertainty finally felt finished when he stood in the Los Angeles Lakers' training complex and proudly held up his new gold jersey while LeBron James looked on approvingly. After months of upheaval around his departure from New Orleans, the superstar forward is looking forward to years of success and stability on the West Coast. Sure, Davis knows the Lakers are rarely stable, and championships are the only success this franchise understands. The six-time All-Star can't wait for the challenge of winning big in the Hollywood spotlight. "The most difficult part for me was just not knowing," Davis said Saturday (Sunday, PHl time). "When it was announced that I was being traded, I don't want to say it was a relief, (but) it was something that I'd thought about for a long time. Obviously it was tough to leave the city I'd been playing in for seven years, but I think it was best for me. "When I found out I'd been traded to the Lakers, I realized it was an unbelievable opportunity for me," he added. "To be here with a wonderful organization, and then to be able to play alongside LeBron and the players that we have now ... to get the opportunity to do that and come here and play for an organization that's all about winning, and winning championships, and that's the only goal, I think that was the biggest thing for me." The Lakers formally acquired Davis this month in one of the biggest moves of the NBA's tumultuous offseason, but this courtship has been happening for much longer. Davis became determined to leave New Orleans last season, and Los Angeles made an in-season run at Davis before eagerly blowing up its young core to get a second game-changing star to play alongside James. Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka introduced Davis as "the most dominant young basketball player in the world." "There is no more complete basketball player in the game," Pelinka added. "There is nothing he can't do. He can shoot. He can make plays. He can defend 1 to 5. He can protect the rim. He can handle the ball. His dedication to his craft is unparalleled. To sit here next to him and think he's going to be on our team and he's going to be a pillar in this franchise for many years is just something we're incredibly proud of." The Lakers gave up Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart and a slew of draft picks to land Davis one year before he could become an unrestricted free agent. While Pelinka clearly expects Davis to sign a long-term deal to stay with the Lakers, Davis didn't make a declaration of his intentions right away. "Right now, my focus is on this year, and trying to help this organization become a championship team," Davis said. Davis' new jersey will bear a No. 3 after his plan to take his usual No. 23 from James fell through thanks to rules involving jersey supplier Nike, who had already begun planning for next season with James in the No. 23 shirt. Davis will go back to the number he wore in elementary and middle school, although he jokingly said the denial of No. 23 "was pretty hurtful." Davis and James have been kept up to speed on Pelinka's machinations to build a strong roster around them. Davis strongly endorsed the signing of DeMarcus Cousins, his former teammate in New Orleans — and not just because Davis prefers to play as a power forward instead of a center. "I like playing the 4," Davis said to a laughing coach Frank Vogel. "I'm not even going to sugarcoat it. I don't like playing the 5, but if it comes down to it, Coach, I'll play the 5." Pelinka said the Lakers signed Cousins and re-signed JaVale McGee precisely so that Davis wouldn't wear down his body guarding centers. Davis was asked about load management, and he dismissed it: "I'm playing. I'm 26-years-old. I love the game of basketball. I'm ready to play." Davis also waived a $4 million trade kicker in his contract so the Lakers would have cap room to take their failed run at Kawhi Leonard, a move that Pelinka praised as selfless. "Anytime you're able to acquire a player like Kawhi, I think you have to do almost everything to get a guy like that," Davis said. "It didn't work out for us, but I wanted to make sure I did whatever I could to help the team." Basketball-loving Los Angeles is still buzzing after its two teams were turned into immediate contenders during free agency, but they're hardly alone in a league that might have achieved a measure of parity after years of Golden State dominance. While Leonard and Paul George landed with the Clippers, Davis and James are confident about the future ahead for the 16-time NBA champions, who are exponentially more beloved in their hometown than their local rivals. Davis has lived in Los Angeles during the offseason for several years, and he loves everything about it but the traffic. "It's going to be fun," Davis said of the new-look league with its new crop of superstar pairings. "I'm excited about it. I think the league has grown. I think it's better. (With) all the players teaming up and spreading that talent throughout the league, it's going to be a fun season. I like our roster. I like every player that we have, from one through 14." The Lakers have been the worst team in the NBA during their team-record six consecutive seasons out of the playoffs, but Davis and James expect to end those struggles and drought in the year ahead. They're aiming for much more, too. "I know we'll talk about it and do whatever we can to definitely make this team a championship team next season," Davis said, before correcting himself: "This season.".....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 14th, 2019Related News