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Beiträge: 6.543

26.07.2019 07:42
m. ETMens hoops: United States-China, 6 p. Antworten

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- The Lakers kicked Nick Young out of practice Thursday. He was sick -- probably from traveling across time zones recently, he suspected -- and they didnt want him getting any of his teammates sick.Would he play Friday against the San Antonio Spurs? It wasnt clear at the time, and even if he did play, Lakers coach Luke Walton said, We didnt know how much we were going to be able to get out of him.But Walton and assistant coach Brian Shaw told Young that if Michael Jordan could play well with the flu -- as Jordan famously did by scoring 38 while quite ill in Game 5 of the 1997 NBA Finals -- then so could Young. It was a message of inspiration, but they were half-kidding, of course. Young took it in stride, then he started against the Spurs.What Young achieved over the ensuing 28 minutes of floor time was stunning on many levels. He scored 22 points, hitting 7 of 12 shots, including 4 of 7 from 3-point range, one of which helped keep the Lakers within striking distance late. He continued to be one of the Lakers best defenders and even blocked a Pau Gasol hook shot, along with grabbing four rebounds. Perhaps his only flaw was that he finally missed a free throw; hes now 28-for-29 for the season.They doped me up real good with some medicine before, so I felt good, Young would later joke. I felt in the beginning, but as the game went on, I started feeling like myself a little bit.The Lakers lost 116-107 despite rallying in the fourth quarter to close a 17-point gap to just four, a comeback both surprising and impressive because they were playing against the stout Spurs without point guard and leading scorer DAngelo Russell, who was out with a sore left knee. Afterward, Walton praised Young, saying he played great and gave us a nice effort.Walton was then asked if he has come to expect such performances from Young, and if he truly grasped how shocking such a concept is considering how tumultuous Youngs past two seasons had been.I dont think its a shock, and, yes, I do expect him to play this way night in and night out, Walton said. Hes our starting shooting guard.Following that business-like, seemingly no-frills response, Walton moved on. But digest this new reality for a moment, if you can. Not only is Young on an NBA roster for the 2016-17 season, but hes starting and playing a key role. And not only that: Hes playing so well that it has become almost commonplace, even when hes playing while sick. And Young is doing all of that with the Lakers, a team that he believed just a few short months ago didnt want him.Factor it all in, and its hard to find a bigger surprise anywhere in the NBA. Indeed, Young has resurrected his career, and he tried to sum up that resurrection in October, just days before Halloween, by offering a ghoulish metaphor. I was like the hand out the grave, Young said with a laugh. Im still here. Im just going to keep fighting, keep going.Publicly, Young laughs and smiles and jokes just about all the time. His personality is often described as cartoonish, but, he admits, that personality also shields what lies beneath. And he put up that shield last season when he faced constant criticism from ex-Lakers coach Byron Scott, saw his minutes and production shrink, dealt with highly publicized off-the-court drama, then endured rumors that the Lakers would cut ties with him and that his career was ultimately in jeopardy.Its tough, Young said after practice at the Lakers facility Saturday. I had to put a facade on to stay believing and have faith.If you could go back in time to last summer and tell Young that after two subpar years hed still remain with the Lakers and be a valuable contributor, a player whom Walton has often said is their best perimeter defender, what would he say?He said hed be shocked, just like most NBA observers are now.I thought for sure come July after the championship game was over, I thought for sure they were going to make some cuts, Young said.And he believed that he would be one of those cuts.It wasnt an unrealistic expectation, after everything that had transpired. First, rewind to July 2014. The Lakers signed Young to a four-year, $21 million deal, rewarding him for averaging a career-high 17.9 points the season before. But that same month, the Lakers also hired Scott as their head coach. And from the start, Scott, with his old-school mentality, and Young, with his light-hearted approach, seemed to clash.Youngs opportunities and scoring fell in 2014-15 and dropped even more last season, when the Lakers posted a franchise-worst 17-65 record. Then in March, a video surfaced, recorded by Russell, that showed Young talking about women other than his fiance, Australian rapper Iggy Azalea. (Young and Azaela would call off their engagement a few months later.)The incident created a divide in the locker room, and there were doubts about whether Young and Russell, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2015 draft, could coexist. To many, the only solution was for the Lakers to part ways with Young.You hear everything, Young said. I wont lie and say I didnt hear all the rumors and all that. It was up in the air. There was so much going on. I didnt know where I was going to be.Many believed Youngs NBA career might well be over and that his only options were to play in China, though even that didnt seem like a guarantee. Young said he wasnt thinking that far ahead, though.I just didnt think I was going to be here, Young said. I knew I was probably going to play somewhere, but I thought for sure Id probably get bought out or traded or just cut, period, and Id have to try out somewhere.As one might expect, Young is about as satisfied by his turnaround as outsiders are surprised.Its great, he said. This is home. I grew up here [in Los Angeles]. I was a little disappointed how everything ended last year, the last two years. [But] Coach has given me the ultimate confidence and [his] believing in me, it makes me want to run through a wall for him.Several Lakers have used that exact same phrase to describe their commitment to Walton.I would run through a wall for Coach right now, Lakers guard Jordan Clarkson said after a practice earlier this month. Hes doing such a good job. We want to get wins for him as well as ourselves.He wants to run through a wall for us, too, Lakers forward Julius Randle added after the same practice. He has our back. And when you have someone who truly cares about you, its a different feeling. Its an open and honest relationship. I can text him, call him, talk to him after practice or whatever. Its just an open relationship. Hes genuine. You can go up to somebody and know if they truly care about you or not.Perhaps no Laker wants to run through that metaphorical wall for Walton more than Young, who credits the 36-year-old coach for helping revive the Lakers as well as his careerIts unbelievable that a coach could come in and just change the whole mindset and the program. Its great, Young said.Young also credits Walton for his individual success, citing the coachs system and ability to relate to players, which is often mentioned as one of Waltons greatest strengths. Luke has been in situations where he knows players, Young said. Hes played against me before. He knows the game.Walton gave Young a chance, a clean slate, but Young also admits that he knew this opportunity might be his last chance in the NBA, and it couldnt be wasted.Yeah, for sure, he said. Unfortunate situations happened last year that made things worse. Once I had a chance to get past all of that, its all about basketball.Young laughed after he was asked to pick which one of those unfortunate situations marked his lowest moment.Its hard to pick one, he said. Ah, man. I had a couple. Coach didnt play me for nine games. It was tough, it was tough. He was bringing people from the D-League up and playing them over me. It was hard, it was hard. It messed up my confidence.So he put up his facade, his shield, joking and smiling and laughing even while his career crumbled around him and his confidence dwindled. He leaned on his family and friends. He didnt visit the Lakers practice facility all summer, only stepping inside in late September, just before training camp began. On the day he walked in, he looked around and noticed the different atmosphere under Walton.It was good, Young said. People were happy to see me.Young played so well in training camp and throughout the preseason, Walton was convinced to start him on opening night. Youngs strong play has only continued, so much so that Walton expects it nightly, even if outsiders are still acclimating.More and more, Youngs metaphor about a hand bursting through a grave seems especially fitting. On Saturday, Young thought about that image.You cant keep me down! he said, his ever-present smile stretching from ear to ear. Blank Jersey . -- In one brief spurt, Brazil turned a close game into a rout and proved again it will be a strong World Cup favourite. Pele Brazil Jersey . Oaklands loss to Seattle clinched the ALs best record for the Red Sox with one day to spare in the regular season. "I think everybody was kind of watching," catcher David Ross said. "Demp (Ryan Dempster) came out before he went to the bullpen and was just yelling that they lost. http://www.soccerbrazilonline.com/Ricardo-Oliveira-Copa-America-Jersey/ . Perhaps Carroll was so prepared for a break because he believes there is very little the Seattle Seahawks need heading into the off-season. "I dont see anything that we need to add. We just have to get better," Carroll said. Ganso Brazil Jersey . In Europe, top teams seem to be largely happy with their squads after spending nearly $1 billion in the off-season. And although English league clubs are unlikely to splash cash in January, Arsenal and Chelsea could be tempted to strengthen their squads with new strikers. Lucas Moura Jersey . John Tavares, Thomas Vanek and Kyle Okposo were also being counted on to slow down sizzling Rangers forward Rick Nash. That plan didnt go so well early. RIO DE JANIERO -- Day 1 of the Summer Olympics is already in full swing, with much more to come Saturday night. Havent seen any of the action? Weve got your recap so far right here:And the first gold medal of the Rio Olympics goes to:?Ginny Thrasher. She won the womens 10-meter air rifle event, giving the U.S. its first air rifle gold since Nancy Napolski-Johnson in 2000. After landing on top of the podium, Thrasher, the defending NCAA champion, said she is actually looking forward to getting back to school again. A biomedical engineering major, she resumes classes at West Virginia on Aug. 17. Read moreSpeedy starts:?On the first day of prelims, swimmers set a world record in the mens 100-meter breaststroke (Adam Peaty/UK) and the second-fastest performance in the womens 400 individual medley (Katinka Hosszu/Hungary). Katie Ledecky opened her Olympic program by swimming the anchor leg of the 4x100 freestyle relay. She rallied the Americans from third to second in their heat with the fastest 100 split (52.64 seconds) among teammates Amanda Weir, Lia Neal and Allison Schmitt.American Katie Ledeckys blistering :52.64 anchor leg in 400 free relay not only likely assured her a spot in... https://t.co/Y5JD4M6Vqj- Wayne Drehs (@espnWD) August 6, 2016Latest from mens gymnastics qualifying: Japans defense of its Olympic title got off to a rough start. From defending champion Kohei Uchimura falling off the high bar to world floor exercise champion Kenzo Shirai stepping out of bounds during his set, the Japanese hardly looked dominant. Britain and the United States are scheduled to qualify in subdivision 2, with China and Russia competing in the final session.Team huddle after putting up the best team score of the day so far! pic.twitter.com/ci3iEk0am0- USA Gymnastics (@USAGym) August 6, 2016More water woes: The boat of Serbian rowers Milos Vasic and Nenad Benik capsized on the Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon, where choppy waters left athletes struggling to stay in their boats. They overturned halfway through the 2-kilometer course. Stunned and soaked, they clung to their boat as the other three crews continued toward the finish line.U.S. advaances to gold-medal match: With a 6-0 semifinal?win against China, the United States is assured at least a defense of its silver medal when it faces Korea in the gold-medal mens archery team event.dddddddddddd Brady Ellison, Zach Garrett and Jake Kaminski will try to give the U.S. its first gold medal in the team event since the Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games. The pairing is a rematch of the London gold-medal contest, which included Ellison and Kaminski.?Belgiums Van Avermaet prevails in road race: The Belgians late sprint in the final kilometer helped him edge out Denmarks Jakob Fuglsang and Polands Rafal Majka to win the mens Olympic road race. His win came after Italys Vincenzo Nibali, one of the prerace favorites, and Colombian counterpart Sergio Henao crashed while trying to navigate a corner on the final harrowing descent of the 6-hour race. Read moreEarly singles exit for Jack Sock: The American lost 6-4, 6-4 against world No. 118 Daniel Taro on the first day of the tennis competition. Sock said after the match that he will continue to play in the doubles despite revealing he is suffering from walking pneumonia. It wasnt easy for me. The night before I got here, I went to the doctor and he told me I had walking pneumonia, said Sock, who added that he feels all right off the court but cant keep up on it. I tried to come down and play, and you could probably hear the cough out there. I wanted the experience, to be a part of the Olympics.?@bgtennisnation thanks for the support bg! Im guessing you won every match in your career that you were supposed to? ????????- Jack Sock (@JackSock) August 6, 2016Coming later ...Womens soccer: United States-France, 4 p.m. ETMens hoops: United States-China, 6 p.m. ETSwimming finals: (Chase Kalisz gold-medal watch in 400 IM; Conor Dwyer gold-medal watch in 400 free; Katie Ledecky to swim anchor leg of 4X100 free relay), 9 p.m. ETWomens tennis: Venus Williams versus Belgiums Kirsten Flipkens, 5:45 p.m. ETInformation from The Associated Press was used in this report. ' ' '

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