Naomi Osaka out of WTA Finals with shoulder injury

SHENZHEN, China – Two-time Grand Slam winner Naomi Osaka withdrew from the season-ending WTA Finals with a shoulder problem on Tuesday, October 29, the second straight year she has been forced out due to injury. Osaka, who retired during last year's edition of the lucrative year-ender with a hamstring injury, had ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsOct 29th, 2019Related News

All media events before, after Lakers-Nets in Shanghai cancelled

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press In response to the NBA defending Daryl Morey’s freedom of speech, Chinese officials took it away from the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets. All of the usual media sessions surrounding the Lakers-Nets preseason game in Shanghai on Thursday — including a scheduled news conference from NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and postgame news conferences with the teams — have been canceled. It’s the latest salvo in the rift between the league and China stemming from a since-deleted tweet posted last week by Morey, the general manager of the Houston Rockets. “There will be no media availabilities for tonight’s game between the Brooklyn Nets and Los Angeles Lakers,” the NBA said in a statement Thursday, released a few hours before the game. The game was to proceed as scheduled. “I understand that there are consequences from that exercise of, in essence, his freedom of speech,” Silver said at a news conference in Tokyo earlier this week. “We will have to live with those consequences.” And this move was one of those consequences. Morey’s tweet expressed support for anti-government protesters in Hong Kong, and sparked fallout that has completely overshadowed the NBA’s annual trip to China — which typically takes on a celebratory tone. Not this year. Most events in advance of the game, such as NBA Cares events to benefit educational causes and the Special Olympics, were called off, as was a “fan night” where Lakers and Nets players were to interact directly with some Chinese ticketholders. Signage in Shanghai to promote the game — huge photos of LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Kyrie Irving and other players — was ripped down, and mentions of the game were scrubbed from the arena website. All that comes as many Chinese corporations suspended their business ties to the NBA. China state broadcaster CCTV said it was not going to show the Lakers-Nets games on Thursday or in Shenzhen on Saturday, and NBA broadcast partner Tencent also said it was changing its coverage plans for the league. Silver said earlier this week that Rockets great Yao Ming, a Basketball Hall of Famer and now the president of the Chinese Basketball Association — which has also suspended its ties with Houston as part of the Morey tweet fallout — is angry as well. “I’m not sure he quite accepts sort of how we are operating our business right now, and again, I accept that we have a difference of opinion,” Silver said. “I also think that as part of our core values, tolerance is one of those as well. I think tolerance for differing societies’ approaches, tolerance for differing points of view and the ability to listen. Certainly I don’t come here, either as the commissioner of the NBA or as an American, to tell others how they should run their governments.” In the U.S., there was governmental reaction as well leading up to the game. On Wednesday in Washington, a bipartisan group of lawmakers — including the rare alignment of Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York — sent a letter to Silver saying the NBA should show the “courage and integrity” to stand up to the Chinese government. They asked the NBA to, among other things, suspend activities in China until what they called the selective treatment against the Rockets ends. “You have more power to take a stand than most of the Chinese government’s targets and should have the courage and integrity to use it,” the lawmakers told Silver. The Rockets were extremely popular in China, largely because of Yao. But the team’s merchandise has been taken off e-commerce sites and out of stores selling NBA apparel in the country, murals featuring the team’s stars and logo were painted over and even the Chinese consulate office in Houston expressed major displeasure with Morey and the Rockets. Morey has been silent on the matter since a tweet Sunday where he attempted to make some sort of amends with the Chinese. “I have always appreciated the significant support our Chinese fans and sponsors have provided and I would hope that those who are upset will know that offending or misunderstanding them was not my intention,” he wrote Sunday. “My tweets are my own and in no way represent the Rockets or the NBA.”.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsOct 10th, 2019Related News

NBA postpones media sessions in Shanghai amid China rift

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press NBA Commissioner Adam Silver told the Brooklyn Nets and Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday that the league is still expecting them to play as scheduled this week, even while the rift between the league and Chinese officials continued in ways that clearly suggested the two planned games in Shanghai and Shenzhen were anything but guaranteed. The NBA called off scheduled media sessions Wednesday for both teams. At least two other NBA events to be held Wednesday before the start of the China games were canceled as part of the fallout that started after Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey posted a since-deleted tweet last week that showed support for anti-government protesters in Hong Kong. "Given the fluidity of the situation, today's media availability has been postponed," the league said. They were not rescheduled Wednesday, though having them on Thursday — game day in Shanghai — remains possible. Later Wednesday in Washington, a bipartisan group of lawmakers — including the rare alignment of Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York — sent a letter to Silver saying the NBA should show the "courage and integrity" to stand up to the Chinese government. They asked the NBA to, among other things, suspend activities in China until what they called the selective treatment against the Rockets ends. "You have more power to take a stand than most of the Chinese government's targets and should have the courage and integrity to use it," the lawmakers told Silver. The NBA did not have any immediate comment on the letter, and it was unclear if Silver had even seen the document. In Shanghai, the mood surrounding the game that — if played — will feature LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and other big NBA names was anything but festive. An NBA Cares event that was to benefit the Special Olympics was called off, as was a "fan night" celebration that was to be highlighted by the league announcing plans to refurbish some outdoor courts in that city. And workers in multiple spots around Shanghai were tearing down large outdoor promotional advertisements for Thursday's Lakers-Nets game. The teams are also supposed to play Saturday in Shenzhen. Chinese smartphone maker Vivo has joined the list of companies that have suspended ties with the NBA for now, only adding to the uncertainty surrounding the China games. Vivo was a presenting sponsor of the Lakers-Nets games, and on Wednesday there was no reference to the game in Shanghai on the list of upcoming events scheduled at Mercedes-Benz Arena. Other firms such as apparel company Li-Ning announced similar moves earlier this week, as the rift was just beginning. Silver said Tuesday in Tokyo that he supports Morey's right to free speech. Several Chinese companies have suspended their partnership with the NBA in recent days, and Chinese state broadcaster CCTV said it will not broadcast the Lakers-Nets games. "I'm sympathetic to our interests here and to our partners who are upset," Silver said. "I don't think it's inconsistent on one hand to be sympathetic to them and at the same time stand by our principles." All around China, stores that sell NBA merchandise were removing Rockets-related apparel from shelves and many murals featuring the Rockets — even ones with Yao Ming, the Chinese great who played for Houston during his NBA career — were being painted over. Effects were even felt in at least one NBA arena Tuesday night. In Philadelphia, where the 76ers were playing a Chinese team — the Guangzhou Loong Lions — two fans were removed by arena security for holding signs and chanting in support of Hong Kong. The signs read "Free Hong Kong" and "Free HK." The sentiment was not different from Morey's since-deleted tweet last week of an image that read, "Fight For Freedom. Stand With Hong Kong." The 76ers and Wells Fargo Center, the team's home arena, released statements Wednesday confirming that the fan removal took place and explaining why. "During the second quarter of last night's 76ers game, Wells Fargo Center security responded to a situation that was disrupting the live event experience for our guests," the arena's statement said. "After three separate warnings, the two individuals were escorted out of the arena without incident. The security team employed respectful and standard operating procedures." The NBA is not the first major corporation to deal with criticism from China over political differences. Mercedes-Benz, Delta Air Lines, hotel operator Marriott, fashion brand Zara and others also have found themselves in conflicts with China in recent years. After Morey's tweet was deleted, Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta said Morey does not speak for the organization. Joe Tsai, who recently completed his purchase of the Nets and is a co-founder of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, has said the damage to the NBA's relationship with China "will take a long time to repair." ___ Reynolds reported from Miami. AP Sports Writer Dan Gelston in Philadelphia and Associated Press writer Yanan Wang in Beijing contributed to this report......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsOct 9th, 2019Related News

TERRIFIC 12: San Miguel’s title run goes through Lance Stephenson

MACAU — San Miguel Beer’s road to yet another championship will have to go through a former Los Angeles Laker in Lance Stephenson. Stephenson now plays for China’s Liaoning Flying Leopards and the Beermen will have to beat them in the semifinals here to reach the championship round of the East Asia Super League’s The Terrific 12 tournament. San Miguel swept Group B of the Terrific 12, beating China’s Shenzhen Aviators and defending champion Ryukyu Golden Kings from Japan. Import Dez Wells is for real, leading the Beermen with highlight plays on both ends of the floor. The same can be said of Stephenson, who has been simply dazzling in the Terrific 12 during a Group D sweep. In a showdown of arguably the two best teams of this year’s tournament, only one will move on to the Finals. Tip off for San Miguel-Liaoning will be at 7:00 p.m. live from the Tap Seac Multi-sport Pavillion. The other semifinals showdown feature China’s Zhejiang Guangsha Lions and South Korea’s Seoul SK Knights.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 20th, 2019Related News

TERRIFIC 12: SMB turns attention to Lance and his air guitar in Macau semis

MACAU — After sweeping Group B of the East Asia Super League’s The Terrific 12 here, San Miguel turns its attention to former Los Angeles Laker Lance Stephenson. The Beermen dropped defending champion Ryukyu Thursday, earning a spot in the next round. Waiting there is Stephenson and the rest of the Liaoning Flying Leopards. Liaoning likewise swept its group, including a win over the TNT KaTropa. “It’s a great opportunity for our team,” head coach Leo Austria said of the Beermen matching up with Stephenson and his team. “Especially for the players looking up to Lance Stephenson when he was still playing in the NBA. But we’re not playing with only him, it’s not a one-on-one,” he added. Austria admits that the Beermen simply do not have the kind of intel they would have liked against the teams that they’re facing here in the Terrific 12. But San Miguel is wired to win and that will not change regardless of who is the opponent. That much has been evident during the Beermen’s victories against Shenzhen and Ryukyu here. “As far as our team is concerned, we really want to win,” Austria said. “Let’s see what will happen. We don’t know their strength and weaknesses but for the fact that they’re in the semifinals, they are really good,” he added.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 19th, 2019Related News

TERRIFIC 12: Semis on the line as SMB challenges champion Ryukyu

MACAU — San Miguel has a pretty simple playoff scenario in the East Asia Super League’s The Terrific 12 here: Win and you’re in. The Beermen can get two things done Thursday as they wrap up Group B play against Japan’s Ryukyu. If San Miguel wins, they dethrone the defending champion Golden Kings and they also make the semifinals to take on Lance Stephenson and the Lioaning Flying Leopards. If they Beermen lose however, they can still advance but it gets a little complicated from there. On Wednesday, Shenzhen demolished Ryukyu by 38 points, a quick turnaround after the Aviators lost to the Beermen by 14 points. San Miguel has to finish 2-0 in its group to make the semis safely. A 1-1 tie among all teams in Group B means the quotient system is in place. Shenzhen is currently at +24 with a 1-1 record while The Beermen are at +14 and the Golden Kings are at -38. Tip off for the San Miguel-Ryukyu showdown will be at 7:00 p.m. here.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 19th, 2019Related News

TERRIFIC 12: Shenzhen beats champion Ryukyu, SMB not sure in semis yet

MACAU — Down goes the Terrific 12 champions. Shenzhen rebounded big time and crushed the Golden Kings Wednesday here, dominating defending champion Ryukyu at the Tap Seac Multi-sport Pavillion, 115-77. The Aviators turned around quickly after losing to San Miguel Beer Tuesday, destroying the Golden Kings by 38 points. Group B play just got more interesting with this result as San Miguel (1-0) has to beat Ryukyu (0-1) to seal its spot in the semifinals. If the Beermen lose, they play the quotient game against Ryukyu and Shenzhen. San Miguel already beat the Aviators by 14 points Tuesday. Shabazz Muhammad debuted in the Terrific 12 and scored 30 points for Shenzhen. Demon Brooks led Ryukyu with 21 points. The Beermen draw the Golden Kings at 7:00 p.m. Thursday here and a win sets up a semis clash against Lance Stephenson and the Liaoning Flying Leopards.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 18th, 2019Related News

TERRIFIC 12: San Miguel scores sensational win over Shenzhen in Macau

MACAU — Strong start and strong finish for San Miguel to open the East Asia Super League’s The Terrific 12 tournament here. The Beermen shook off China’s Shenzhen Aviators Tuesday at the Tap Seac Multi-sport Pavillion, scoring a sensational 90-76 win in Group B play. Behing import Dez Wells, San Miguel was off to a flying start and led by as many as 20, 33-13. But the Aviators would fight back, eventually cutting the deficit to one, 61-62, early in the fourth. The Beermen responded and back-to-back booming triples from Terrence Romeo capped an 18-6 run for San Miguel that pushed them ahead, 80-67. It was cruise control for San Miguel from then on. Dez Wells was a force in his San Miguel debut, leading the Beermen with 29 points, eight rebounds, five steals, and four assists. Romeo added 17 points on four triples for the Beermen while Chris Ross and Christian Standhardinger were good for 11 points each. Pierre Jackson was the high man for the Aviators with 18 points. — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 17th, 2019Related News

TERRIFIC 12: SMB has a “mini C-Mac” in Dez Wells

MACAU — San Miguel is focused on the East Asia Super League’s The Terrific 12 tournament here but the Beermen have some important business to attend to when they get back to Manila. That business is to win a second PBA Grand Slam in franchise history. With that goal in mind, San Miguel has tapped import Dez Wells to help power the team’s chase for a triple crown. Tuesday against China’s Shenzhen Aviators, everyone got a good look at Dez Wells in a San Miguel jersey and well... he’s pretty good. Wells shot an even 50 percent and led the Beermen with 29 points on top of eight rebounds, five steals, and four assists. After winning a title with Chris McCullough, the Beermen have found their mini C-Mac in Wells. “Just like what I’ve said before, he’s the small version of the role of Chris McCullough,” head coach Leo Austria said. “He could manufacture some points when needed and I think he will do well on our team,” he added. The more crucial part of Wells’ stint with San Miguel is how well he’ll fit with the Beermen. Judging by early returns, his integration to the Beermen will be smooth and unproblematic. “I think he’s fit into our team,” Austria said of Wells. “He’s really a nice player and everybody loves him.”   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 17th, 2019Related News

TERRIFIC 12: SMB’s Grand Slam prep starts in Macau against Shenzhen

MACAU — Before San Miguel tries to complete a Grand Slam in the PBA, the Beermen’s resolve will be tested here in the East Asia Super League’s The Terrific 12 tournament. The Beermen will start Group B play Tuesday as they do battle against the Shenzhen Aviators of the Chinese Basketball Association. San Miguel retains its powerful All-Filipino core that won a fifth straight Philippine Cup title this year as well as regaining the Commissioner’s Cup, setting up a Grand Slam chase for the second time in three seasons. While five-time MVP June Mar Fajardo is doubtful with an ankle injury sustained in the 2019 FIBA World Cup, the Beermen still have Terrence Romeo, Alex Cabagnot, and Chris Ross to man the backcourt plus Christian Standhardinger up front. San Miguel also acquired the services of import Lester Prosper to help fortify the team’s frontline. Dez Wells is the team’s main import as he’ll also suit up in the Governors’ Cup once the Beermen return to the PBA. Shenzhen will be on the other side of the court when San Miguel makes its East Asia Super League debut. The Aviators are coming off a semifinal finish from the recent CBA season and are led by former NBA guard Shabazz Muhammad and 2019 CBA Scoring Champion Pierre Jackson. Shenzhen then has 6’9” Shen Zijie and 7’2” Li Muhao patrolling the paint. The San Miguel-Shenzhen showdown will be the third game of a loaded Day 1 slate on Tuesday and will tip off at 7:00 p.m. live from the Tap Seac Multi-sport Pavilion here.   — Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

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

3 PBA teams seek hot starts in Macau’s Terrific 12

San Miguel Beer, TNT KaTropa and Blackwater eye opening day wins to boost their semifinal bids at the start of the East Asia Super League Terrific 12 at the Tap Seac Stadium in Macau. The Beermen face the Shenzhen Aviators at 7 p.m., the KaTropa take on the Liaoning Flying Leopards at 9 p.m. while […].....»»

Source: Tempo TempoCategory: NewsSep 16th, 2019Related News

Cohesion keeps building for Team USA at FIBA World Cup

By John Schuhmann, SHENZHEN -- Over the last few weeks, members of the United States Men's National Team have often said this about their opponents: "They've been playing together for a long time." Sometimes, it's accurate. Sometimes, it's not. Only four of the nine rotation players for Turkey, the team that almost beat the U.S. in its second game here at the FIBA World Cup, were in the rotation for Turkey at Eurobasket two years ago. In comparison to this version of Team USA, which came together exactly five weeks ago Monday, yes, the opponent typically has more continuity from summer to summer. The "they've been playing together for a long time" thing has also been drilled into American players as they prepare for FIBA play. It comes out of their mouths pretty easily when they're asked about an opponent or why a game was tougher than it should have been in regard to the talent on the floor. Maybe it's an excuse. Maybe it's just reality. USA coach Gregg Popovich, in talking after his team's 89-73 victory over Brazil on Monday, said, "Those guys have been together awhile" about the opponent. But down the hall from where Popovich took the podium, there was something new. It was the opponent saying the following about the Americans: "It looks like they've been playing together for a long time." The opponent was NBA veteran Anderson Varejao, who has seen multiple versions of the U.S. National Team. And after facing this one, he made note of the chemistry. "That's a great complement," Kemba Walker said when told about Varejao's appraisal. "I think we're getting it." If there ever was a U.S. National Team where the whole needed to be greater than the sum of the parts, this is it. This team does not have the offensive superstars that past teams have had. Walker: 'Chemistry is coming along' In the gold medal game of the 2010 World Championship, Kevin Durant scored 28 points against Turkey. In the gold medal game of the 2012 Olympics, he dropped 30 on Spain. In 2014, Kyrie Irving and James Harden combined for 52 points against Serbia in the World Cup final. And in the 2016 Olympics, the U.S. took gold behind another 30 points from Durant against the Serbs. Through five games at this tournament, no U.S. player has scored more than 20 points in a game. And the only 20-point game came from Jaylen Brown against a team (Japan) that went 0-5 with the tournament's third worst defense, statistically. That doesn't mean that the U.S. can't be a good offensive team. It just has to be a more cohesive offensive team than American teams of the past. "We just need each other so bad," Walker said. "And I think we're starting to realize that each and every game. These teams are so good. These teams are so tough. It's just taking everybody and everything we've got to win these games. The chemistry is coming along really well." You could start to see it against Greece on Saturday, though the Americans shot just 36 percent and barely scored a point per possession (69 on 68). The ball movement was sharper than it had been previously and they got a lot of open shots that just didn't fall. Some of those shots started to fall on Monday, and the U.S. had its second-most efficient offensive game of the 10 its played (including exhibitions), scoring 89 points on 75 possessions (1.19 per). The only more efficient game its had was against the aforementioned, 30th-ranked Japan defense. In that Japan game, the U.S. never scored on more than five consecutive possessions. Prior to Monday at the World Cup, its longest stretch of consecutive scores was six straight against the Czech Republic in Game 1. In that ugly win over Greece on Saturday, the U.S. never scored on more than three consecutive possessions, and only twice scored on three straight. But spanning the third and fourth quarters against Brazil on Monday, the U.S. scored 10 straight times. It was a 24-10 run that broke the game open and was fueled by an offense that's gaining more confidence and more cohesion, especially against zone defense, which was a real struggle just six days earlier. "I think we're starting to get more familiar with one another," Joe Harris said. "I think you see it every game where the ball really moves a lot offensively, and then you're sacrificing for one another defensively." Quick decisions critical to success There was some individual excellence in that run, but the final three points came when Myles Turner made a quick flash to the ball and an even quicker pass to Walker for a three from the top of the key against the zone. The U.S. had mostly been winning with a defense that ranks first in the World Cup (84 estimated points allowed per 100 possessions) through pool play. Defense will remain critical, because the offense of their opponent (France) in Wednesday's quarterfinal ranks second (123 estimated points scored per 100), behind only that of the potential opponent in the semifinals (Serbia, 129 per 100). Although this U.S. team doesn't have those elite bucket-getters, it will still need to get buckets -- and it will need to get them via cohesion, quick actions and decisiveness (like Turner displayed on his assist to Walker). Sometimes, you can get by on talent. The U.S. is, once again, the only team in the tournament with 12 NBA players. But this team needs to get more out of its talent than teams of the past. The more games they play, the more the Americans know what they're doing collectively. They've seemingly taken a big step forward over the last week. And in the eyes of Varejao, the U.S. is, for once, one of the teams that "has been playing together for a long time." "Chemistry is built once you hit adversity together and you got to push through it," Jaylen Brown said, "and we've been challenged multiple times on this trip." The toughest challenge to date will come Wednesday against the best opponent the U.S. has faced in the first elimination game its played. But the Americans seem more ready, and more together, than ever. John Schuhmann is a senior stats analyst for You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 10th, 2019Related News

The MVP exits: Giannis, Greece fail to advance at World Cup

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press SHENZHEN, China (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo now has a little more time to get ready for the NBA season. That would be an unwanted consolation prize. The reigning NBA MVP's stay at the World Cup is over, even after a victory in the team's finale. Greece needed to beat the Czechs by at least 12 points to have any chance of reaching the quarterfinals, and instead is heading home after an 84-77 win on Monday wasn't enough to push it to the next round. "He's proud of his team. ... We gave everything we have," said Thanasis Antetokounmpo, the MVP's brother, along with his Greece and now Milwaukee Bucks teammate. "It's crazy — you win and you don't get to the next round." Giannis Antetokounmpo fouled out with 5:32 left, called for charging on a play that left the Greek bench and fans howling in disbelief. Greece was up by 10 at the time, on the cusp of the margin it needed to advance. Czech guard Tomas Satoransky of the Chicago Bulls knew it was a big call. "We knew that he would go for the Eurostep or try to force it," Satoransky said. "In Europe, they'd probably call it. In the NBA, they wouldn't call it, obviously, because they protect stars." Giannis Antetokounmpo did not make himself available to reporters for the second consecutive game. He also told FIBA officials that he was too upset to speak Saturday after Greece's 69-53 loss to the U.S. Antetokounmpo is the first reigning NBA MVP to play in the World Cup or the world championships. Only three reigning MVPs have played in the Olympics — Michael Jordan in 1992, Kobe Bryant in 2008 and LeBron James in 2012, all for the U.S., and all going home with a gold medal. "He came, he worked 100%, he tried 100% to get this game," Greece coach Thanasis Skourtopoulous said. Greece, up by seven both times, had to take fouls three times in the closing seconds — unusual for a team with a lead, of course, but the only number that mattered was the scoring margin and the Greeks simply needed more points. It almost worked: Nick Calathes' deep 3-pointer with 7 seconds left pushed Greece's lead to nine, but Jaromir Bohacik — who was 5 for 6 from the line in the final 20 seconds — made a pair with 4.6 seconds remaining, and that was the end for Greece. Greece had its chances, leading by as many as nine in the first half. But the Czechs closed the half on a 16-6 run — a stretch where Giannis Antetokounmpo went to the bench with 1:10 remaining after an ill-advised offensive foul, his third personal of the game — and, because of the point-differential tiebreaker, Greece knew it needed a dominant 20 minutes of second-half basketball to keep hope alive. And it wasn't to be. So soon, it'll be time to head back to Milwaukee. The Bucks open training camp Oct. 1, play their preseason opener Oct. 7 against Chicago and open the regular season on Oct. 24 at Houston — in a game that will feature the last three MVPs, with Antetokounmpo, Rockets guard and 2018 winner James Harden and new Houston guard Russell Westbrook, the 2017 MVP when he was with Oklahoma City. Thanasis Antetokounmpo said getting to share the World Cup stage with his brother, even with a disappointing final outcome, was what he would remember. "It was a dream come true," he said......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 10th, 2019Related News

MVP Antetokounmpo, Greece fall to US at World Cup

SHENZHEN, China: NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo was unable to save Greece as holders the United States reached the Basketball World Cup quarterfinals with a 69-53 win on Saturday (Sunday in…READ.....»»

Source: Manilatimes_net Manilatimes_netCategory: NewsSep 8th, 2019Related News

Pinoy ref in US-Greece match

Filipino referee Bong Pascual appeared in another high-profile match in the FIBA World Cup Saturday when he served as one of three officials in the United States’ 69-53 win over the Giannis Antetokounmpo-led Greece in Shenzhen, China......»»

Source: Tempo TempoCategory: NewsSep 8th, 2019Related News

US takes down Antetokounmpo, Greece

NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo was unable to save Greece as holders the United States reached the Basketball World Cup quarterfinals with a 69-53 win on Saturday. In front of a capacity 12,000 crowd in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, Gregg Popovich’s world and Olympic champions had two or sometimes three players on Greece’s danger […] The post US takes down Antetokounmpo, Greece appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Source: Tribune TribuneCategory: NewsSep 8th, 2019Related News

Americans top Antetokounmpo, Greece at World Cup 69-53

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press SHENZHEN, China (AP) — Kemba Walker scored 15 points, Donovan Mitchell scored 10 on his 23rd birthday and the U.S. contained NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo, defeating Greece 69-53 in a second-round game at the World Cup on Saturday. Harrison Barnes and Derrick White each scored nine for the U.S. (4-0), which can clinch a quarterfinal berth Monday in multiple ways. It needs either a win over Brazil or a Greece win over the Czech Republic or through a three-way tiebreaker, if necessary. Antetokounmpo, the Milwaukee Bucks star and reigning NBA MVP, scored 15 points but Greece (2-2) was eliminated from contention for a spot in the quarterfinals. The U.S. national team has won 57 consecutive games in international tournaments with NBA players, starting with the 2006 world championships bronze-medal game and continuing through every FIBA Americas, world championships, World Cup and Olympic event since. The streak started after a 101-95 loss to Greece in 2006 — a defeat that forced the U.S. to change its program. The Americans haven’t lost in the biggest tournaments since. “I thought we played well,” Walker said. “Stuck to the game plan.” Antetokounmpo’s eyes were closed as he mouthed along with the words of Greece’s national anthem. After the U.S. anthem played and the rosters from both sides met at midcourt for the customary pregame exchange of gifts, the NBA MVP shook hands with Bucks teammate Brook Lopez and gave him a quick hug. Other than that, there was no pregame interaction between Antetokounmpo and the Americans. He was super-aggressive from the jump, spinning his way to a layup on the first possession, making a 3-pointer on Greece’s second possession and he got fouled on a baseline drive on the next trip down the floor. So that was five points in the first 43 seconds for Antetokounmpo. He scored four in his next 18 minutes of playing time. The Americans kept a steady stream of different looks coming at the MVP — who was guarded in the first half alone by Harrison Barnes, Khris Middleton, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart and Myles Turner. The Celtics players, perhaps mindful of what he did against them in last season’s playoffs, held him scoreless in the half and the U.S. went into the break with a 38-25 lead. Antetokounmpo had a steal and dunk late in the third, which got plenty of fans out of their seats and Greek fans waving flags. But the outcome was never in doubt, and the MVP was on the bench for the entire fourth quarter in a somewhat puzzling move. TIP-INS U.S.: Mitchell’s birthday came a day after Joe Harris turned 28. ... Smart, who has twice missed time with leg injuries this summer, slipped and fell as he chased a loose ball out of bounds with 1:11 left in the first. He stayed in the game. ... The U.S. shot only 36%. Greece: The outcome came five years to the day after the Greeks were ousted by Serbia in the Round of 16 at the 2014 World Cup. ... Nick Calathes became the third Florida player to be part of a loss to the U.S. this summer; Andrew Nembhard played in the Americans’ pre-World Cup win over Canada in Australia, and Scottie Wilbekin played for Turkey in its overtime loss to the U.S. in the group stage. HOLDING LEADS Through four games, the U.S. has trailed for all of 7 minutes, 48 seconds — out of a possible 165 minutes. The Americans have led for 147:02, and games have been tied for 10:10. CLAMPING DOWN The U.S. has held Japan and Greece to a combined 98 points in the last two games. That represents the fewest points the U.S. has allowed in consecutive games of a major international tournament since the 1988 Olympics, when the Americans gave up 92 in a two-game stretch against Egypt and Puerto Rico. UP NEXT U.S.: Face Brazil (3-1) in a second-round finale Monday in Shenzhen. Greece: Face the Czech Republic (3-1) in a second-round finale Monday in Shenzhen......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 7th, 2019Related News

MVP Antetokounmpo and Greece fall to USA at World Cup

    SHENZEN, China – NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo was unable to save Greece as holders the United States reached the FIBA World Cup quarterfinals with a 69-53 win on Saturday, September 7. In front of a capacity 12,000 crowd in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, Gregg Popovich's world and Olympic champions ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsSep 7th, 2019Related News

Finally, an easy one: US rolls by Japan 98-45 at World Cup

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press SHANGHAI (AP) — Jaylen Brown scored 20 points, Kemba Walker added 15 and the U.S. World Cup team finally got to enjoy an easy night, rolling past Japan 98-45 Thursday in the Group E finale. Harrison Barnes scored 14 points while Joe Harris and Donovan Mitchell each had 10 for the Americans (3-0), who are bidding for an unprecedented third consecutive World Cup title. And now, the NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo awaits the Americans as the stakes get higher. The U.S. is headed to a pair of second-round games in Shenzhen, China — with the first one Saturday against Antetokounmpo and Greece. The Greeks claimed the 16th and final second-round berth with a win Thursday night against New Zealand. Yudai Baba scored 18 for Japan (0-3), which will play in classification games the rest of the way. Rui Hachimura, Japan's best player and the No. 9 draft pick this year by the Washington Wizards, was held to four points on 2 for 8 shooting. A U.S. program that is accustomed to blowout wins, particularly when it has NBA players, hadn't enjoyed one yet in six games against international competition this summer. The biggest victory margin before Thursday was 21 in the World Cup opener against the Czech Republic, and the U.S. came into the group finale with a plus-59 scoring differential in four exhibitions and two World Cup games. This one, two days after the Americans needed late-game heroics to beat Turkey 93-92 in overtime, was drama-free. It was 13-0 before Japan scored, 23-9 after a quarter, 56-23 at halftime and 73-25 midway through the third quarter when Hachimura got loose for a dunk and his first points of the night. Somehow, matters could have been even worse for Japan: The U.S. missed seven of eight shots during one first-quarter stretch and finished shooting 48% for the game. TIP-INS Japan: The Japanese missed their first six shots, and went 5:48 without a field goal until center Nick Fazekas rattled in a short jumper. ... Japan doesn't play the U.S. often, and when the matchup happens it's one-sided. The Americans are 3-0 against Japan in the Olympics, winning by a combined 183 points (98-40 in 1956, 125-66 in 1960 and 99-33 in 1972). The teams hadn't previously met in World Cup play. U.S.: The Americans held a 58-33 rebounding edge. ... Harris replaced Jayson Tatum in the starting lineup. Tatum is out with a sprained left ankle and isn't scheduled to be reevaluated again until Monday. ... Marcus Smart (left quad strain) also missed the game, so the U.S. was down to 10 healthy players and two of its four Boston Celtics. ... The Americans were flying to Shenzhen after the game. 3 FOR 3 This tournament marks the 36th different Olympics, World Cup or world championships appearance for USA Basketball. The Americans have now started 3-0 in those events 34 times, going 106-2 overall in their opening three matchups of those competitions. POP ON RUI Hachimura worked out for Gregg Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs before the draft, and left a positive impression on the U.S. and Spurs coach. "He knows what he can do, puts himself in position to be successful and score, plays D, rebounds, runs the floor," Popovich said. "He's got an all-around game. His confidence is growing and he'll be a fine player, obviously, and have a very long career." UP NEXT Japan: Faces New Zealand in a classification-round game Saturday at Dongguan, China. U.S.: Faces Greece in a second-round game Saturday at Shenzhen, China......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 5th, 2019Related News

Tatum out at least two games at World Cup

By John Schuhmann, SHANGHAI -- The United States Men's National Team announced Wednesday that Jayson Tatum will miss at least the next two games with the left ankle injury that he suffered in the final seconds of the team's 93-92, overtime victory over Turkey. Tatum will be reevaluated on Monday, Sept. 9, the day that the U.S. plays its second of two second-round games. After the Turkey win, Tatum lamented that going 2-for-3 at the line to tie (but not win) the game at the end of regulation eventually led to his injury. "I'm still pissed I missed the second one," he said before limping out of the arena. "Then I wouldn't have got hurt." Here's how the U.S. schedule looks going forward... On Thursday, the U.S. will play its final, Group E, first round game against Japan in Shanghai. The Americans have already qualified for the second round, but the result of this game still counts in regard to qualifying for the quarterfinals out of the second round (where Groups E and F become Group K). The U.S. will play two second-round games (in Group K) against the top two teams from Group F on Saturday (Sept. 7) and Monday (Sept. 9) in Shenzhen. With its win over Greece on Tuesday, Brazil has already qualified for Group K. The second team from Group F will be the winner of Thursday's game between Greece and New Zealand. Joining from Group E with the U.S. will be the winner of Thursday's game between the Czech Republic and Turkey. The top two teams from Group K (combining results from the first and second rounds) will make the quarterfinals, playing next Wednesday (Sept. 11). The two Group K teams will be placed on opposite sides of the bracket, but they'll both face teams from Group L, which is already set in stone: Australia, the Dominican Republic, France and Lithuania. That is a very strong group, and one of Australia, France and Lithuania won't even qualify for the quarters. It's possible that the Americans would face a tougher opponent in the quarterfinals than they would in the semifinals. Serbia (silver at both the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympics) remains the favorite among teams outside the United States. If both Serbia (already qualified for second-round Group J) and the U.S. finish first in their second round groups, they would be placed on opposite sides of the bracket. If one finishes first in its group and the other finishes second in its group, they would be on the same side, with a potential meeting in the semifinals. The U.S. (playing every other day if they keep advancing) will hope to have Tatum back before then. He has shot just 7-for-22 (32 percent) in two games at the World Cup, but has been one of the team's best generators of offense off the dribble, and he came up with a pair of big plays down the stretch of Tuesday's victory. One of Joe Harris or Khris Middleton will likely start in Tatum's place on Thursday. John Schuhmann is a senior stats analyst for You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsSep 4th, 2019Related News