Monthly Archives: July 2017

AFC South 2017 predictions: Time to take division, and the Titans, seriously

Keep joking about the AFC South at your own risk. According to projected win totals, it’s no longer the NFL’s worst division. And one team, maybe even a couple, could do real damage in the playoffs this season.

The two-time defending division champion Texans have a promising rookie passer and what could become the league’s best defense. The Titans have real pieces around their young Cheap Jerseys NY Giants star quarterback. The Jaguars (on paper, at least) improved significantly on defense. The Colts have Andrew Luck.

Even if the AFC South is not great, it’s competitive. Don’t be surprised if a team not named Indianapolis or Houston wins the division for the first time since 2008.

At one point, Webb’s arm and athletic upside as a Cal transfer from Texas Tech had him in the conversation to be an early second- or even late first-round pick. But there were enough concerns about his mechanics, pocket presence and accuracy that he couldn’t go to a team that needed a starter in 2017 or ’18.

The Giants had the luxury to draft for his potential, and so far, Webb is doing and saying the right things. A big step for him in camp, regardless of Smith’s health, would be improving consistently to pull even with the veteran.

Of the 14.2 points per game he is averaging this season, 12.0 points come from four play types that don’t require him to do much with the ball in his hands. He’s either spotting-up for 3-pointers, cutting to the basket when his defender falls asleep, using his length to score in transition or attacking the Cheap Jordan Jerseys For Sale offensive glass for putbacks.

Kevin Durant thinks resting complaints are ‘only about a couple of players’

Kevin Durant thinks the controversy surrounding resting players has been blown slightly out of proportion.

The star small forward, who is still out of action for the Warriors with an injury, doesn’t think NBA commissioner Adam Silver needs to get team owners involved.

“The truth about it is, it’s only for a couple of players in the league,” Durant told ESPN.com. “They don’t care if the 13th man on the bench rests. It’s only for like LeBron [James], Steph [Curry], [James] Harden, Russell [Westbrook]. It’s only for like five players, so you want a rule just for those five players?”

Durant conveniently failed to mention himself, Kyrie Irving, who along with James helped spark the controversy, the Spurs stars, DeMar DeRozan and Isaiah Thomas — if their teams ever sat them — DeMarcus Cousins and Anthony Davis and a host of other stars for respective teams.

The Pacers, currently sixth in the Eastern Conference standings, reportedly wanted three among a group of four Boston players, including Avery Bradley, Marcus Smart, Jae Crowder and Jaylen Brown, the No. 3 overall selection in the 2016 draft, as well as the 2017 pick the Celtics got from the Nets. On his trade deadline show, The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski said the Nuggets believed they found their franchise player in center Nikola Jokic, and refused to include the 6-10, 250-pounder in any package for George. The 22-year-old Jokic has been good for 20.1 points, 11.1 rebounds and 6.3 assists per game in his last 10 contests.

Indiana and Boston, No. 2 in the East behind the Cavaliers, wound Cheap Green Bay Packers Jerseys up not making any moves. Denver sent a protected pick to Milwaukee in exchange for Cheap Game Jerseys Bucks center Roy Hibbert to add depth to its frontcourt.

Hawks plan to sign veteran guard Jose Calderon, report says

The Hawks plan to sign veteran guard Jose Calderon ?as early as Saturday, ESPN.com reported, citing unidentified league sources.

Atlanta would be the veteran point guard’s third team — at least on paper — this week.

He agreed to a buyout with the Lakers and had agreed with Cheap Echl Jerseys the Warriors to join the defending Western Conference champions, who abandoned that deal when Kevin Durant suffered a knee injury.

Rivers himself had rested Clippers stars Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan on the second night of a back-to-back situation on Thursday in Denver. So he understands why the Cavs sat LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love. Yet at the same time, NBA games without marquee stars are not as attractive for TV viewers or fans who purchased tickets.

“I hate it for the fans. I really do,” Rivers said. “I hate it. I do it. We all do it. I mean, it’s bad. And I did it the other night in Denver. There are people with Blake and DJ jerseys all over the place.”

Rivers recommends the league tweak its scheduling to prevent teams appearing in nationallly televised games from playing back-to-back games.

“I think we have to treat those games like they’re afternoon games, and you don’t play Cheap Embroidered NFL Jerseys the night before,” Rivers said. “And then you don’t play the next night after.”

ESPN replacing Sage Steele with Michelle Beadle as ‘NBA Countdown’ host

As the NBA playoffs approach, ESPN is making a key personnel change.

Network veteran Sage Steele is out. Michelle Beadle is in, the network announced Tuesday.

Beadle, who rose to popularity as personality on ESPN2’s “SportsNation,” will become the full-time host on “NBA Countdown,” leading the network’s coverage throughout the the postseason, including the Western Conference finals and NBA Finals on ABC. The shift likely means Sage Steele will no longer have a role in ESPN’s NBA coverage.

Beadle joined the “Worldwide Leader in Sports” in 2009. She began her stint on “Countdown” at the beginning of this season, frequently joining former players-turned-analysts Jalen Rose and Chauncey Billups in the studio on the network’s regular Wednesday and Friday night broadcasts.

Center Tristan Thompson will miss both contests after sustaining an injury during the Cavs’ 122-102 win against the Magic on Tuesday, the team announced.

If the 6-9, 238-pound Thompson doesn’t suit up, it would end his streak of 447 consecutive games, the longest current streak in the NBA.

Tristan Thompson did not travel to Boston & will have MRI on his thumb after hurting it last night, sources said. X-rays were negative.

Windhorst also reported the MRI is precautionary, meaning even if Thompson shouldn’t be out for an extended period of time. In anticipation of Thompson’s absence, the Cavaliers have called up late-season signee big man Larry Sanders from the Canton Charge, Cleveland’s D-League affiliate.

The Cavs hold a 2-1 advantage over the Celtics in Cheap Kids Jerseys NHL New England Patriots Cheap Jerseys the season series. The Cavaliers and Celtics are No. 1 and No. 2 in the Eastern Conference standings.

Hawks’ Dennis Schroder sounds off toward coach after being benched

Dennis Schroder scored 19 points in the first quarter against the Warriors, but didn’t get a chance to finish the game.

No, he didn’t get hurt. Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer pulled his point guard from the game with 8:41 to go in the third quarter. The reason is that he got in a brief spat with teammate Dwight Howard, which allowed Stephen Curry to hit a wide-open 3-pointer while they were arguing.

Cowherd continued piling on.

“I look at Steph Curry today, and I watched the Finals. And I watch his injury,” Cowherd said, via Fox Sports. “And I watch him lobbying for (Kevin Durant). And I watch him now, as KD gets hurt, [be] ineffective. … We have the most wide-open MVP race we’ve had in my life, in the top-six he wouldn’t get a vote. I would put John Wall ahead of him. I’d put Isaiah Thomas ahead of him. I’d put (Russell) Westbrook, Kawhi (Leonard), LeBron (James) … he’s not even in the discussion! He’s fallen off a cliff! Is he a franchise guy?”

Granted, Curry is mired in a terrible shooting slump. In his past seven games, he’s shooting 23.6 percent (18-for-76) from 3-point range. But as the pass highlight video shows, he brings other dimensions to the Warriors even when he’s not knocking down the threes.

For the last few years, Wright has been a Where To Buy Cheap Jerseys mainstay on any list of Wholesale Jerseys Paypal potential college-to-pros coaches, and it’s no secret as to why.

He has the even, level-headed demeanor that would translate well to the NBA, especially in a rebuilding situation, and more importantly, he has the chops as an Xs and Os guy. Wright’s small-ball, motion offense is very much in tune with the way the NBA has been trending.

“I think if he made that jump, he would not have to change much,” one general manager said. “That’s why he is always getting consideration.”

LeBron James does not have a fan in Mavericks first-rounder Dennis Smith

When Mark Cuban was asked for a reason why he drafted N.C. State guard Dennis Smith on Thursday his answer was pretty straight forward.

The most impressive interview we had was when we talked to Dennis in person, he said. We were shocked when he fell to 9. We think we got the steal of the draft.

Watch him straight embarrass himself, not once, but twice attempting a 360 dunk while in overseas on a promotional tour for ANTA, the China-based sneaker brand he endorses.

Thompson, who recorded a 31.5-inch vertical leap at the 2011 NBA Draft Combine, had a career-low five made dunks in 2016-17 despite averaging 23.7 points. His 268 made 3-pointers was second in the NBA only to Curry.

Just stick to what you’re best at my boy. Griffin is much in the same boat as Paul. Griffin could sign something like a four-year, $175 million deal with the Clippers, $40 million more than any other team could manage.

But this is also Griffin’s first foray into free agency. A team with space to add him as a second option could significantly raise its ceiling. Griffin has extended his shooting range and improved his passing every season, so he would instantly improve many offenses.

The biggest question, though? What are teams willing to pay Griffin? He’s 27 years old with a long list of injuries, and his athleticism could be on the decline as a result. He’s also never been a great defender. He’s obviously a top talent, but there are a lot of variables at play here.

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NBA playoffs: 5 stats to know about LeBron James and Cavs’ collapse vs. Celtics

The Celtics rallied Sunday night to defeat the Cavaliers in a shocking win. Not many people were giving Boston a chance, especially considering Isaiah Thomas was inactive and it was a road game. Nevertheless, the Celtics found a way to win and the stats from the Cavs’ collapse are pretty impressive.

Ginobili, who has been delegated to the bench has he ages, will become a free agent July 1 and knows his career is coming to a close.

I’m going to go game by game, Ginobili said via San Antonio Express-News. We’ll see if (Monday) is the last one of the season. We hope that it’s not, and that we have a few more. Once it’s over, then I’ll start wondering what the future brings.

Green finished the game with 16 points and 14 rebounds, but struggled with his shooting, going 6 of 16 from the field and 1 of 6 from the 3-point line. He was less effective corralling center Tristan Thompson in this game, as Thompson went for five points, 10 rebounds and five assists.

He said that, after getting that first technical foul, he kept up his aggressive approach, even as a potential ejection loomed.

Ain’t no tech going to stop me from being me, Green said. At least if I am going to get them, let me earn them. Let me get my money’s worth if I am going to get some techs. But hey, that’s the day and age we live in.

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Kerr wanted his team to take care of the ball.

James exits the game at 1:47 left in the first quarter. The Warriors go on an 10-0 run to finish the frame and take a seven-point lead to the bench. James has 15 points on 7-of-8 shooting. Thompson has been back to his normal self for Golden State, scoring 16 points on 5-of-7 shooting. It’s been fun, but the result is the same. The Warriors have the advantage.

Kerr wanted his team to take care of the ball. That hasn’t happened. The Warriors already have 11 turnovers with seven minutes left in the first half.

This is getting ridiculous. James has 21 points in 13 minutes. He has missed on one shot so far. And the Cavs are down 46-43.

Another injured player worth keeping an eye on is Indiana wing OG Anunoby, a combo forward who is still recovering from an ACL tear he suffered in January. Teams have been monitoring Anunoby, even with the possibility that he might not play at all next season.

The Lakers have been hopeful that Anunoby would somehow last through the first round to their second pick, No. 28. Of all the things their young core of recent draftees lacks, a defensive edge tops the list, and that is Anunoby’s strength.

While there is some concern about whether he is more of a small forward or power forward, Anunoby shrugged that off, saying Three and four are kind of the same thing now.

But the Lakers will have to dodge plenty of interested teams should they decide that Anunoby is their guy. The Heat, with the 14th pick, have also shown interest, as have the Blazers at 15.

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James Cavaliers did not have enough guys making plays

After the game, James was looking at things rationally. There is no room for errors against the Warriors. And the Cavs made just enough errors to blow a winnable game, and their chance to salvage this series.

I said it after we won the Eastern Conference finals that were getting ready for a juggernaut, James said. Its probably the most, most firepower Ive played in my career. I played against some great teams, but I don’t think no team has had this type of firepower.

So even when you’re playing well, you got to play like A-plus-plus, because theyre going to make runs and theyre going to make shots and they got guys thats going to make plays.

And on this night, James Cavaliers did not have enough guys making plays. In the end, that will be story of this series.

Monotony and predictability are two things that can easily describe the NBA regular season, but the offseason is vastly different. During the offseason, teams have a chance to be good. And Thursday’s NBA Draft has already sparked some interesting rumors to match an early trade that moved Philadelphia up to the No. 1 overall pick.

Every indication points to the 76ers selecting point guard Markelle Fultz with the top pick. Fultz could be the final piece needed to once again make Philadelphia competitive.

But that trade just scratched the surface of possibilities this offseason. The Celtics, who traded with the 76ers, currently will pick third overall. There is still uncertainty regarding which player they covet, or if they will even pick at three.

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Victor Martinez hospitalized overnight, goes on DL due to irregular heartbeat

The illness that forced Victor Martinez to leave Thursday night’s game in the seventh inning led to the 38-year-old being hospitalized overnight.

Tigers manager Brad Ausmus told MLB Network Radio on Friday that Martinez was taken to the hospital for observation. Before Friday night’s game, Ausmus told reporters Martinez had been diagnosed with an irregular heartbeat and would be placed on the 10-day disabled list.

Martinez was still in the Tigers clubhouse immediately after Detroit’s 5-3 home win over the Rays on Thursday but declined to speak to reporters about his condition, according to the Detroit News.

Ausmus told reporters after the game that Martinez had cold sweats, was dizzy and his heart was racing.

Martinez barely made it to first base after reaching on an error in the seventh. He was replaced by pinch-runner Dixon Machado.

Ferrell signed a 10-day contract with Dallas on Jan. 28, started in his Mavericks debut and hit a pair of game-sealing free throws in a road win against the Spurs on the 29th. He then outscored Kyrie Irving in a victory over the Cavaliers on the 30th.

On Feb. 3 against the Trail Blazers, he hit his ninth three of the game — tying a rookie record, giving him a game-high 32 points — with 19 seconds left in the Mavs’ 108-104 win, propelling Dallas to its first four-game winning streak of the season.

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