Archive for the 'Basketball' Category

Thomas Returns To Boston And Fans Cheer, Ball Family Lands In Lithuania

BASKETBALL

Boston fans love their players, even their former players as evidenced by the reception Isaiah Thomas received on Wednesday night when the the Celtics hosted their eastern conference rivals, the Cleveland Cavaliers. Thomas (and a few other players) were dealt to the Cavs last summer in exchange for Kyrie Irving. Thomas didn’t suit up for the game, as he’s still recovering from a hip injury, but the fans still gave him a standing ovation. Thomas was moved and said, “But [the fans] showed their true colors, like they always do, and that’s — I keep saying it, but it’s genuine love on both sides. The fans are everything here.” The game didn’t match the hype of the rivalry and the Celtics put the Cavs away with a 102-88 win.

The Ball family has started a new season of their “reality” show. Dad LaVar and 18 year old LiAngelo Ball and 16 year old LaMelo Ball landed in Lithuania to a swarm of reporters and curious spectators. Playing in this European League will be an interesting and potentially punishing experiment for the boys, as the League is very physical.

 

 

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Rookie Kuzma Leads Lakers, Longoria Traded, Brady’s Trainer Causing Friction

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The Houston Rockets 14 game consecutive winning streak (the 4th longest in franchise history) ended Wednesday night in a loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. James Harden did his best shooting 51 points and 9 assists, but Lakers’ rookie Kyle Kuzma was on fire with 38 points including seven 3-pointers. The rest of the team, including Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram, came together to put on show and stop the mighty Rockets. Unfortunately for the Rockets, all-star Chris Paul left the game in the 4th quarter with a strained adductor. No word yet on the seriousness of the injury.  Lakers 122, Rockets 116.

BASEBALL

The San Francisco Giants made a big statement by trading to get star third baseman Evan Longoria from the Tampa Bay Rays. The Giants gave up one of their top prospects, infielder Christian Arroyo, in the trade. We’ll have to wait until next season to determine which team got the better deal.

FOOTBALL

Tom Brady’s trainer has reportedly caused some friction with coach Bill Belichick. Belichick apparently doesn’t like Alex Guerrero’s “non-traditional” training techniques and questionable medical background. Brady credits Guerrero for keeping him in such great shape and has even made Guerrero his son’s godfather. Belichick wants only his medical staff treating the players so has rescinded some of Guerrero’s perks like traveling with the team and enjoying a sideline pass during games.

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Dolphins Throwback Patriots, Ball Brothers To Play In Lithuania

FOOTBALL

The Miami Dolphins looked different on Monday Night Football, and it wasn’t just because they were wearing their throwback uniforms. In a matchup with the New England Patriots, the Dolphins held Tom Brady to one touchdown and two interceptions, while Dolphins quarterback Jay Cutler threw for 263 yards and three touchdowns. The Patriots seemed flustered without star tight-end Rob Gronkowski (who was suspended for one game due a late hit last weekend). They will need to get their act together when they take on the Pittsburgh Steelers next weekend with home-field advantage in the AFC on the line.

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Ball brothers, LiAngelo and LaMelo, are heading to Lithuania to play for professional Club, Prienu Vytautas. The brothers signed a one-year contract with the Club in the hopes (according to Vytautas) of bringing some publicity to the team. If you remember, LiAngelo was on the UCLA team, until he got suspended indefinitely for shoplifting while on a team trip to China, while LaMelo was taken out of China High School to be home-schooled by dad LaVar.

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Giants Coach McAdoo Fired, LiAngelo Ball Pulled Out Of UCLA

FOOTBALL

As anticipated, the Giants head coach Ben McAdoo is out, and rumors are swirling for his replacement. The Giants’ general manager, Jerry Reese, has also been fired, and defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo is now the interim head coach. It’s likely Eli Manning will now return as the starting quarterback on Sunday when the Giants host the Dallas Cowboys.

BASKETBALL

LiAngelo Ball (one of the UCLA players arrested in China for shoplifting) was suspended from the team and hasn’t played a game yet in his college career. Clearly not happy with how his son has been treated since his return to the states, LaVar Ball announced he’s taking LiAngelo out of UCLA and will train him to be ready for the NBA draft. LaVar told ESPN, “I’m going to make him way better for the draft than UCLA ever could have.  He’s not transferring to another school. The plan is now to get Gelo ready for the NBA draft.” The youngest son, LaMelo is still committed to UCLA in 2 years, but it’s unclear now whether LaVar will let that happen.

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Auburn Upsets Alabama, Miami Falls, Schiano Deal Done, Crabtree/Talib Ejected, Alabama Plays With Only 3

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In the college football world where the top teams are vying for divisional playoffs and bowl games, Saturday’s games were intense. The biggest upset of the day came in the Iron Bowl where the Auburn Tigers beat the Alabama Crimson Tide. It was the second time in 3 weeks the Tigers beat #1 ranked teams.  Auburn is now in the running for a bid for the College Football Playoffs. The #2 ranked team, Miami, also fell this weekend to Pittsburgh leaving the College Football Selection Committee in a tailspin.  The new top 25 in the College Football Poll will be announced Tuesday evening.

In other big college football news, the Tennessee Titans backed out of a deal to bring Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano to Tennessee as their head coach. The deal appeared to be final until the social media universe blew up with criticism of Schiano’s ties to Penn State and Jerry Sandusky. Schiano has always claimed he knew nothing of Sandusky’s abuse of children, but Tennessee now looks like it will go in a different direction.

In the NFL, one of the most frustrating plays of the day (frustrating if you have Crabtree on your fantasy team like me) came when Oakland Raiders wide receiver Michael Crabtree got into a brawl with the Denver Broncos Aqib Talib on the second offensive possession of the game. Crabtree was getting back at Talib for snatching his chain during a game last year. Both players were ejected and will certainly expect to hear from the League with more punishments on the way. For more NFL news, click here.

BASKETBALL

#25 Alabama and #16 Minnesota played one of the craziest college basketball games on Saturday. During the second half, a fight broke out, and all five of the Alabama players left the bench and were immediately ejected (rules state players are never allowed to leave the bench area when there’s a situation on the court). Shortly after, another Alabama player fouled out and then another hurt his ankle, leaving on 3 players on the court for the final 10 minutes of the game. The Crimson Tide actually made a game of it and came close to winning, but ultimately couldn’t hold on, and Minnesota  went on to win 89-84.

 

 

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Bills’ QB Situation, Belichick Third Most Wins By Head Coach, Trump Tweets Agst Lynch & LaVar

FOOTBALL

The Buffalo Bills will be re-evaluating their quarterback situation this week. Coach Sean McDermott benched their starting QB Tyrod Taylor for rookie 5th round pick Nathan Peterman in Sunday’s 54-24 loss to the Los Angles Chargers. Peterman had a disastrous debut with five interceptions in just the first half, the first QB since the 1970 AFL/NFL merger to throw five picks in the first half of a game. Peterman had a good attitude after the game saying, “Coach always says, ‘We never lose, we learn,’ and that will definitely be my mindset moving forward. I’m going to learn a lot from this and make sure it never happens again.”

New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick notches another accolade in his legendary carreer. With the Patriots’ win over the Oakland Raiders on Sunday, Belichick passed the former Hall of Fame Dallas Cowboys coach Tom Landry for third most wins of an NFL Head Coach. Belichick gives credit to his arsenal of great players, but according to his players and owner Robert Kraft, Belichick works tirelessly to get his team prepared and comfortable before games.

Fewer players sat for the National Anthem this week, but one player in particular received the tweeting wrath of President Trump. Oakland Raiders’ running back Marshawn Lynch sat during the National Anthem during their game against the Patriots in Mexico but then stood for the Mexican anthem. Trump tweeted, “Great disrespect! Next time NFL should suspend him for the remainder of season. Attendance and ratings way down.”

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President Trump also used his twitter feed to respond to LaVar Ball, father of the recently released LiAngelo Ball from China for shoplifting.  Trump, as well as high powered executives including Joe Tsai (who recently bought 49% of the Brooklyn Nets), worked behind the scenes to release the three UCLA players. LaVar downplayed the role Trump played and said the shoplifting charge was “no big deal”. Trump did not take that so well and tweeted, “Now that the three basketball players are out of China and saved from years in jail, LaVar Ball, the father of LiAngelo, is unaccepting of what I did for his son and that shoplifting is no big deal.”

 

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UCLA Players Suspended, Joel Embiid And 76ers On Fire, Kevin Hart Trust The Process

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The three UCLA basketball players who were caught shoplifting in China are back in the US and  have been suspended indefinitely from the team. According to their coach, “They will have to earn their way back.” President Trump tweeted the players were set for 10 years in jail if he hadn’t intervened with the President of China. All three players, LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley and Jalen Hill, thanked President Trump for helping them out of the situation.

In the NBA, the Philadelphia 76ers have been transformed. Their young team, led by Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons, is causing a stir in the League. Embiid put on a show Wednesday night in Los Angeles in a big win over the Lakers with 46-points, 15-rebounds, seven-assists, and seven-rebounds.  After the game, Philly fan Kevin Hart, ran over to Embiid gave him a big hug and later tweeted “Trust the PROCESS!!!!! A healthy sixers team is a problem for the NBA!!! It’s all about growth!!!” 76ers 115, Lakers 109.

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Grayson Allen Is Back, LiAngelo Ball Left China, Alabama Tops CFR

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Duke’s Grayson Allen, the player everyone loved to hate last season, showed his critics he’s back and ready for a great season. With 37 points and 7 of 11 three-pointers in a win over Michigan State, Allen seems to have matured since last year and could be a high draft pick in the NBA at the end of the season. Duke 88, Michigan State 81.

LiAngelo Ball and his two UCLA teammates Jalen Hill and Cody Riley, are on their way back to the United States after their arrest for shoplifting in China. UCLA hasn’t said what the basketball players’ punishment will be, but expect LiAngelos’s dad, the outspoken LaVar, to weigh in on the verdict.  LaVar’s third son, LaMelo has already committed to play at UCLA, but if LiAngelo’s punishment is unacceptable to LaVar, he could decide to have LaMelo skip high school and go straight to the pros.

FOOTBALL

In the latest College Football Rankings, Alabama took the #1 spot (in place of Georgia who lost to Auburn last week), with Clemson, Miami, Oklahoma, and Wisconsin filling out the top five.

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LiAngelo Ball Arrested, Georgia Tech Drama

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LiAngelo Ball and two other UCLA basketball players, Cody Riley and Jalen Hill, were arrested in China for allegedly shoplifting at a Louis Vuitton store. UCLA is in China to play Georgia Tech on Friday. LiAngelo is the son of the infamous and controversial LaVar Ball and the brother of the Lakers’ Lonzo Ball. LaVar, not one to normally keep quiet, has been instructed to remain silent “due to the legal nature of the matter”.

Georgia Tech players were not arrested for shoplifting, but Georgia Tech is going through its own scandal right now. Coach Josh Pastner’s longtime friend Ron Bell, reportedly violated NCAA rules by giving monetary benefits to two of its players, Josh Okogie and Tadric Jackson (who have both been suspended indefinitely). The story takes on a dramatic twist as Bell and Pastner were “like brothers” until Bell reportedly “turned” on Pastner.

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LaVar To Home-School LaMelo, Chiefs-Redskins Wild MNF

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The controversial LaVar Ball is taking his youngest son LaMelo out of Chino high school in order to home-school and train him on his own. LaVar doesn’t like the new coach of Chino and believes he can make LaMelo into the best player ever. LaMelo is already committed to playing for UCLA in two years. According to LaVar, “I’m going to make him the best basketball player ever. It’s good for Melo. Less distractions. He just needs to focus.” Fans on social media had some fun at LaVar’s expense with posts such as this:

FOOTBALL

If you stayed up until the end of Monday Night Football, you saw an exciting final few plays in the Kansas City Chiefs-Washington Redskins game. With four seconds left the Chiefs rookie kicker cleared a 43 yard field goal to put the team ahead 3 points. But then things got even more exciting when the Redskins tried to salvage a loss by lateraling the ball a few times before fumbling and allowing the Chiefs linebacker to score. After four games, the Chiefs remain the only unbeaten team in the League. Chiefs 29, Redskins 20.

 

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