2017: Best Year of My Career So Far, Says Victor Moses

first_img*Reveals how coming of Conte to Chelsea changed his lifeDuro Ikhazuagbe with agency reportNigeria and Chelsea star, Victor Moses, has revealed that the outgoing 2017 remains the best year of his football career so far. Moses has Chelsea’s Italian Manager, Antonio Conte, to thank for the resurgence of his career.In 2017, Moses won an English Premier League medal, got married, established himself as ‘the indispensable man’ in Conte’s Chelsea and above all, helped Nigeria become the first African nation to qualify for 2018 World Cup in Russia from a group that had the likes of Cameroon, Algeria and Zambia.Yesterday, Moses told UK’s Daily Star that all these happened in his life as a result of the chance given to him by Conte at Stamford Bridge.He said: “For me, its definitely the top – my best year so far, on and off the pitch.”Moses had the perseverance to make a success of his Chelsea career despite being continually sent out on loan says a great deal about his character.No-one else at Chelsea can do what he does and without him, Conte’s 3-4-3 system would collapse.After spending the previous three seasons being shipped around on loan, it might be a surprise.Never able to make much of an impression at Liverpool, Stoke City or West Ham United, Moses looked set to be sold by before Conte arrived- just another youngster who could not cut it at Chelsea.Moses spent most of his career in a more advance role, before settling into a wing-back as Conte dramatically tore up previous manuals and stamped his own authority on the club.He said: “Becoming a wing back is not an easy transition. It’s not an easy job and you need stamina to play there.“The manager works me on the training ground, and it’s been really good. When you have someone who is really backing you it gives you confidence,” stressed Moses.The Nigerian forward however picked up an injury against his former club Palace and was out of the side for six weeks in the autumn, but was recalled the moment he was fit again.He added: “It’s been a great year for me. I’ve really enjoyed it, but want to keep it going.”The only hiccup this season however is being squeezed out of the race to become CAF African Player of the Year, behind Gabon’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Egypt’s Mo Salah and Sengal’s Sadio Mane – a decision that angered the Nigerian Football Federation.Moses would rather claim he was in the running then being over-looked.He added: “I must have done well. It felt good to be nominated. I’ve worked so hard. It’s a bit crazy and shows how far I’ve come.”The present good run of Moses in 2017 has kind of pale away the memories of the hard way he took to arrive England from Nigeria just as an 11-year-old boy.He got to the Queens land as an asylum seeker after both his mother and father were killed during religious clashes in Kaduna in 2002.According to his account, he was playing football in the streets when his parents lost their lives. A week later, his remaining family put together enough money to send him to England.Palace under Neil Warnock gave Moses his chance. His natural ability showed he would never have been a mid-level journeyman, with mates claiming he would either play Champions League, or on park pitches.After playing for England from Under-16 to Under-21, Moses opted for the country of his birth. Now, he’s glad he took that decision which made him an integral part of the team Franco-German coach, Gernot Rohr is putting together to dazzle the world next summer in Russia.“Nigeria was the first African country to qualify for the World Cup. We are like Chelsea  (at Super Eagles). We believe in ourselves.At Stamford Bridge, Moses believes the tough December schedule will not hinder the quest for a trophy this term despite floundering far away from run away league leaders, Manchester City.“Chelsea has loads of games coming up. We’ve got a great squad, and the manager we have here, we know what we are capable of,” concludes Moses. Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Application aims to help users in an emergency

first_imgIf an earthquake hit Los Angeles, how would the media cover it? That was the question that kept Gabriel Kahn up at night during his tenure as Los Angeles bureau chief for The Wall Street Journal.“We had a lot of reporters … but access to information was a challenge. We didn’t want to have to wait two hours for the sheriff’s department to hold a press conference to get the details necessary to do our job,” Kahn said.Then came the epiphany: Why not let citizens do the reporters’ jobs for them? As Kahn put it, “What we needed wasn’t more reporters … we just needed to turn regular citizens into reporters.”The timing was perfect, as Kahn had just started working with the Annenberg Innovation Lab at USC. What resulted from the idea is Crisis Connection, a website and smart phone application that allows citizens and emergency responders to exchange vital information in the event of a disaster.Kahn demonstrated the capabilities of the Crisis Connection website at the 2012 Innovation Summit, which was presented by the Annenberg Innovation Lab on March 30. During an emergency, a user can quickly upload a picture or video along with a brief description of his or her predicament. The person’s location is automatically pinpointed on a map using geolocation.Users can also receive notifications of new posts and use this information to organize search parties, offer supplies or simply post their location and contact information should anyone request their help.Though people already have a number of options if they want to offer or receive help during an emergency, Kahn believes Crisis Connection offers important services.“911 is a great, fantastic tool, but it doesn’t work in a widespread disaster because if 500 people are calling 911 every minute, the dispatcher can’t handle that volume,” he said. “They don’t have resources to dispatch to everyone who’s calling.”Unlike Twitter or Facebook, Crisis Connection is devoted solely to disaster and emergency situations, reducing the amount of information users have to sort through.Crisis Connection is still a work in progress. Shangsong Ji, who worked on the Website Team until he graduated in 2012, said the app still needs several improvements.The Homeland Security Advisory Council, which helps the Innovation Lab with fundraising, recently secured a $600,000 grant from the Ahmanson Foundation.[Correction: A previous version of this story stated the grant from the Ahmanson Foundation was $60,000. The foundation gave $600,000.]The money from the grant, which will be doled out over a two-year period, will give Kahn and his team the resources to proceed with “rigorous testing of the product in a real community like USC,” according to Kahn.Though the team is currently using USC as a testing ground for the app, Kahn says the eventual target consumers will be “communities that face constant environmental threat,” citing particular neighborhoods along the Mississippi River that face periodic flooding.The app does not yet have a formal release date yet, as the team has just begun discussions with the Dept. of Public Safety and other USC officials about how to incorporate the project into the USC community.“We’ve got to make sure we’ve got a lot of things in place before we actually test it,” Kahn said.The online version of Crisis Connection can be found at CrisisConnection.info/live.last_img read more

New recruits will have big shoes to fill

first_imgAs the college football recruiting circuit heated up, the Trojans were the interests of potential top recruits this past weekend, with five-star defensive end Rashan Gary, four-star athlete Trevon Sidney and three-star defensive end Connor Murphy stopping by.Among these four big recruits, Rashan Gary is the most impressive for the Trojans considering his 6-foot-5, 293-pound frame and impressive motor. As it stands, the defensive tackle is being recruited by every top school in the nation, but has only officially visited Michigan, Ole Miss, Auburn and, most recently, USC.“Gary took an official visit to USC from Thursday to Sunday along with his mother, Jennifer Coney, for what was the fourth of Gary’s five permitted official visits,” ESPN insider Tom VanHaaren said in an ESPN.com blog post. “According to Coney, the visit may have put USC — widely believed to be a long shot -— very much in the picture for the No. 1-ranked prospect.”As for the other prospects who visited this past weekend, defensive end Murphy could become a Trojan this fall.Murphy cited his visit this past weekend as a nine out of 10 due to USC’s diverse and intellectual campus. Potential USC recruit of the same surname, four-star recruit Byron Murphy, is still expected to visit USC at a later date.Other recruits interested in being Trojans include four-star tight end and defensive end Devin Asiasi, five-star defensive end Jonathan Kongbo and three-star athlete Evan Hinson.USC has already established 14 total commitments from 11 four-star and three three-star recruits, with only six more scholarships to give considering the five redshirt freshmen returning to the team in 2016.After a disappointing Holiday Bowl loss at the hands of the Wisconsin Badgers, USC is looking forward to the future in their 2016 recruiting class as well as their returners.What the Trojans are not looking forward to are the losses of several starters and 20 overall players due to expiring NCAA eligibility and the upcoming NFL Draft.On defense, USC’s defensive line is a virtual ghost town due to the departures of starters Antwaun Woods, Delvon Simmons and Greg Townsend Jr., along with reserves Claude Pelon and Cody Temple who combined for 173 of USC’s 1,052 total tackles.Replacing them will be one of USC’s most talented defensive lines in the Pat Haden era with returning freshmen Rasheem Green, Noah Jefferson, Jacob Daniel, Kevin Scott, Christian Rector, fifth-year senior Jordan Simmons, fourth-year junior Kenny Bigelow Jr. and third-year sophomore Malik Dorton.Along with a potential signee in defensive tackle Rashan Gary, Liam Jimmons from Huntington Beach, Oluwole Betiku from Gardena Serra and Keyshon Camp from Lake Gibson Senior in Lakeland, Florida, all verbally committed to USC this year.USC has three-star OLB Jordan Iosefa and four-star cornerback C.J. Pollard to assure USC’s secondary, which will be losing inside linebacker Anthony Sarao and cornerbacks Keyvon Seymour and Ryan Dillard.On the offensive side of the ball, running back Tre Madden, tight end Cyrus Hobbi, fullbacks Soma Vainuku and Jahleel Pinner and wideouts George Katrib and David Mellstrom are not returning in 2016.Besides Madden and Pinner, none of the other offensive losses should hurt USC considering JuJu Smith-Schuster, Ronald Jones II, Justin Davis, Steven Mitchell Jr., Adoree’ Jackson, Darreus Rogers, Jalen Greene, Justin Davis and Tyler Petite are all returning.The team will, however, be losing three big players on the line of scrimmage with quarterback Cody Kessler, center Max Tuerk and offensive guard Erick Jepsen all leaving.The Trojans should not be concerned with the offensive line, though, with a majority of their 2015 starters coming back in 2016, including center Khaliel Rodgers.As for the quarterback situation, redshirt junior Max Browne is considered the most-likely starter amid a multitude of passers such as redshirt senior Conner Sullivan, sophomores Sam Darnold and Michael Bowman and four-star recruit Matt Fink.Although Browne has the height and experience to lead this Trojan football team, dual-threat Sam Darnold could shake up the competition with his running and throwing capabilities.“There will be a position battle in spring between Max Browne and Sam Darnold that should be a lot of fun to watch,” ESPN and WeAreSC.com writer Garry Paskwietz said in an ESPN.com interview. “The one twist is that there will be a new offensive coordinator in Tee Martin which means Browne and Darnold are both starting from the same beginning point in that system.”If Darnold gets the starting job as a dual-threat, he could pave the way for 2016 commit Matt Fink, who also thrives with his legs.And while Darnold threw for 2,985 yards and 39 touchdowns and rushed for 785 yards and 13 touchdowns in his final high school season, Fink showed during his senior season with Glendora that he could also drive the ball with his legs and his arm, amassing 1,258 yards and 15 touchdowns through the air and 1,106 yards and 17 touchdowns on the ground.Regardless of who is under center for the Trojans come fall, USC is going to have some exciting young players catching passes, including four four-star wide receivers: Tyler Vaughns, Josh Imatorbhebhe, Michael Pittman and Velus Jones.Out of the four wideouts,  Pittman had the best senior season in high school statistically, catching 81 passes for 1,990 yards and 24 touchdowns. Vaughns, however, could outduel Pittman for a potential starting role considering his soft hands and unbelievable catching abilities while airborne.With spring practices in full swing and the official spring game just months away, head coach Clay Helton and the rest of his new coaching regime have a lot of work on their hands, but they won’t be without some talented freshmen come Sept. 3 in Arlington.last_img read more

Where do the Lakers and Clippers stand entering the playoffs?

first_imgBut the alternative? Of no finish at all? It’s still unthinkable.Kentavious Caldwell-Pope said he felt the Lakers hitting their stride in March, and while he’s never made a title run himself, he started to feel the confidence of a contender. They were controlling half court possessions, defending with passion and pride. One of the few remaining pieces from two underachieving Lakers teams, Caldwell-Pope was enjoying the feeling he got of winning.And then things skidded to a halt.“Just going from that run to completely stopping, it took a toll on us, far and away mentally,” he said. “That’s what we do. Play basketball. And we really wanted to get back at it … We here for one thing, our mission is to try to get to that championship and win it.”Similarly, some in the Clippers camp said that they worried they would be robbed of the opportunity to seriously contend for the team’s first title. The pairing of two SoCal natives, Kawhi Leonard and George was the kind of star alignment the franchise has been waiting for throughout its entire — and mostly futile — history.Related Articles Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook and other NBA stars pay tribute to Kobe Bryant Video: What LeBron James said about Jacob Blake … ‘Black people in America are scared’ On Mamba Night, the Lakers make short work of Blazers to take 3-1 series lead Clippers coach Doc Rivers said he felt anxiety during the hiatus at the prospect of losing a shot at the organization’s first championship.“I’d look at our team, and I’m sure there’s other teams like this, but you’re looking at our team, like, ‘Wow, man, we’ve got a shot here, and we may not have season,’” Rivers said. “So that was early on when it first shut down. It looked like it may happen for the season. That was really disappointing.”But his players held out hope, they’ve said, keeping in contact, getting together to train and doing what they could to replicate the normal in-season camaraderie-building that would’ve occurred if not for the coronavirus.“We visited each other,” George said. “I went down to where (Leonard) was at, (Leonard) came down to where I was at. We spent time together  — the whole group did, not just me and him. I think we made up a lot of time.”The Lakers also had workouts, though none they’ve publicly acknowledged, at private gyms in Southern California. They stayed connected through text threads and Zoom workouts, and when protests arose after the death of George Floyd in May, they talked about that too.Getting together in July for their flight to Orlando, in that sense, felt like a reunion, but one where not much had changed.“When I was growing up, we had AAU days and then once the AAU season is over, you kind of go back to your respective cities and things of that nature,” James said last month. “And then AAU season starts back up again that next spring and it’s like you never left. And that’s what kind of the feeling is.”Would it all be for nothing? The teams didn’t truly have an indication until May that a plan was in place to restart the season at Disney World, then had to ride out a month of social unrest that made some players question if it would be wise to return to basketball. Each step of the way was uncertain, unknown until the Lakers and Clippers set foot in the bubble, ready to pick up the chase.“So yeah, that definitely crept into my mind,” Leonard said. “But we’re here now.”Sign up for Home Turf and get exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here.PICKING UPOne of the biggest selling points for the Clippers has been the guys in the background: While George and Leonard were the headliners, the team also retained players like Patrick Beverley, Montrezl Harrell and Sixth Man of the Year Lou Williams — veterans who could pick up the slack on nights when the All-Stars weren’t so hot.Throughout the regular season, it was hard to see how a fully healthy group would play out: The squad that was 10-1 this season the 11 scant games it played with all of its personnel. So when the Clippers began to assemble in June with everyone in agreement to play, Rivers thought that moment had finally arrived.“I’m thinking even greater things now,” Rivers said. “ ‘Man, not only are we going to start the season back, but we’re going to have a chance to build our chemistry for the first time all year.’“And that doesn’t happen, right?”Rivers’ team has been hammered by injuries, illness and personal issues since it arrived in Florida. The Clippers entered quarantine without five players; two were still home, having contracted coronavirus, and three others were delayed by personal matters. And others have left since the bubble began.The list is harrowing: Beverley returned and emerged from quarantine in time for the seeding opener against the Lakers, but the Clippers’ emotional leader played only twice more ahead of the playoffs. Williams earned a 10-day quarantine upon his return to the bubble after making an overly extravagant stop for wings. Harrell — like Williams, a Sixth Man of the Year finalist — left the bubble to mourn the death of his grandmother and missed all of the seeding games and is questionable to play in the opener just as he gets out of quarantine. Second-year sharpshooter Landry Shamet also has been out, nursing a left foot sprain.While George has said he’s healthier than he’s been all season, the trade-off hasn’t worked so well yet for the Clippers. It wasn’t the play you’d draw up after a four-plus-month-long hiatus, but, as Rivers has said a few times in the past few weeks, life happens.“But now the playoffs are here,” Rivers said. “Whether we’ve been together or not, this is what we’ve been waiting for. This is our opportunity.”The Lakers lost Avery Bradley, who opted out, and Rajon Rondo, who broke a hand the first weekend the team was released from quarantine. But their biggest issues haven’t been ones of missing pieces, but rather ones of rust: Their offense ranked third-least efficient in the bubble, and their three-point shooting was dead last.Even Davis and James, considered shoo-ins for first-team All-NBA honors, had up-and-down nights. Nothing quite exemplified this struggled like the win over the Jazz, when Davis had 42 points, to the next game against the Thunder, when he had nine.His performances were uneven enough that he crept into one of the gyms on the Disney campus with James to put up some shots after scoring just eight points against Indiana. In his final seeding game against Denver, Davis scored 27 points.“Been kind of tough on myself,” he said. “I just wanted to see the ball go through the rim a couple times. … For me personally, I don’t like the way I’ve been performing as of late so I had to just get back in the gym and try to smooth it up a little bit.”He hasn’t been the only one: The only Laker who played significant minutes in the rotation before the restart who is shooting above his season average is Kyle Kuzma, who Frank Vogel said he’s been pleased with. Everyone else has taken time to get used to the environment — to the point where in the seeding game against Denver, Vogel felt the Lakers slacked on defense after emphasizing finding their shooting in the preparation.Righting that seesaw now, as a playoff run is about to begin, doesn’t seem like ideal timing. But Danny Green said he believes the numbers will rise as the Lakers seek that groove again.“As a team we haven’t shot greatly, he said. “I think we’re starting, trying to find that rhythm. We just gotta make that extra pass and trust each other.”FIRST-ROUND FOESFor the Lakers, the challenge is more daunting now than it might have been in a normal season: They have to face a team that was in last year’s Western Conference Finals, led by the player who has been lighting up the bubble.Boosted by Damian Lillard’s seeding games MVP performance (37.5 ppg), Portland has ripped off a 7-2 run. And they’re also healthier than they were back when the Lakers beat them twice in December, boasting both Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins to complete a starting lineup that can actually compete with the Lakers in size. Add up that they’ll be trying to guard Lillard without Bradley, and the case for a once unthinkable upset seems, at the very least, a little intriguing.“He’s balling right now. He’s hot,” Davis said of Lillard. “He’s doing whatever he’s doing, whatever he can do to make his team win.”While the Clippers have spent the past few weeks trying to keep it together with patience and perspective, the Mavericks have been revving their substantial offense ahead of their first postseason appearance since 2016 with best offensive rating in NBA history (116.1). They’ve averaged 122.5 points per game in the bubble, more than any participant beside the plucky Blazers, who put up 126 per game to force their way in.Between super sophomore (and nearly rounding into his third year) Luka Dončić and rangy 7-foot-3 Kristaps Porzingis, the Mavericks are averaging 60.5 points and 19.6 rebounds just from their own superstar duo.Moreover, the hard-fought home court advantages have been sacrificed to the bubble — no Laker Girls, no Clipper Darrell, no raging, raucous fans to back the Lakers and the Clippers as they attempt to quash their lower seeds. For the Lakers, they’ll have the rich voice of Lawrence Tanter introducing their lineups, but it will be a recording.Players from both teams say it’s hard to see any “advantage” about it.“I mean, yeah, it’s the bubble,” George said. “Guys are shooting it well. I don’t think it’s that much pressure on guys being in a hostile environment. So that definitely changes things.”But even though the Lakers and Clippers didn’t build their seasons to the playoffs they imagined, they still built them. And that inherent character is still there, even if the talent hasn’t always been ready to produce yet in the bubble. Both the Lakers and Clippers feel like they have switches to flip that can power them to the Western Conference Finals meeting they’ve been circling since opening night.For Davis, he acknowledged how different starting a playoff run as a Laker feels from his New Orleans days — that feeling of being chased, and having the weight of the world’s expectations is entirely foreign. But bring it on, he added.“More exciting for me to go out and try to compete and all the pressure that people talk about for our team,” he said. “Just try to go out there and prove them wrong.” LeBron James called it a rhythm — a feeling in his body that hums and tells him the playoffs are around the corner. To Paul George, it was “flow,” that ideal balance of team chemistry that just seems right.Both the L.A. contenders were feeling that groove back in March: The Lakers were 8-2 coming out of the All-Star break, knocking off their title rivals in one weekend. But aside from their loss to the Lakers, the Clippers were 7-2 after the break themselves, including trouncing the Nuggets who were chasing them in the standings.Then — in one fell swoop. It all stopped. And as James put it in March, he couldn’t have imagined not having “closure” to a season where the title window seemed so wide open.The only coulda-woulda-shouldas the rest of this NBA season will be self-imposed. There will be no great, collective what-if. There will be a champion, providing at least some sense of finality to a turbulent season that could conclude almost an entire calendar year after it began, with the Lakers and Clippers faced off on Oct. 22.center_img For Lakers’ LeBron James, Jacob Blake’s shooting is bigger issue than a big Game 4 victory Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Photos: Lakers defeat Trail Blazers in Game 4 of first-round playoff series But these Lakers and Clippers are different teams from then, and even from what they were five months ago when the season went on hiatus. Their showing in the seeding games have been uneven: The Lakers have been hampered by experimental rotations and cold shooting; the Clippers simply haven’t had key role players ready to check in.Closure is coming, but with two March contenders that don’t look quite like what they were in August, is it the kind they want?Even though both teams have soldiered through the sometimes frustrating restart, with its unfamiliar surroundings and isolating circumstances, even they have to admit: If only the season had never interrupted, each team might have a clearer path to a championship, even though those paths have often seem destined to collide.“It was a little frustrating because we played our way all the way up until that point, we played ourselves into that chemistry, into that zone we were in,” George said. “… It was tough to take this little break.”CLOSUREThe bubble system, which so far has kept out any confirmed positive coronavirus tests, is imperfect, players acknowledge. They dislike no fans in the arenas. Some teams, including the Lakers, have said the digital backgrounds skew shooting, and the logistics mean that common locker room luxuries — like showers and post game meals — are completely forsaken.last_img read more

Video: Vin Scully calls Los Angeles Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw’s no-hitter

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error In this MLB.com video, Vin Scully calls Los Angeles Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw’s no-hitter.Viewing on mobile? Go here: http://m.dodgers.mlb.com/shared/video/embed/embed.html?content_id=33848827&topic_id=8878826last_img

Dodgers shut out for second time in four days

first_imgLOS ANGELES >> On a team challenging history, the Dodgers have surprisingly little MVP hype surrounding any of their players. Earlier this week, MLB Network tweeted out a graphic of five leading candidates for the award in the National League.None was from the Dodgers.Not playing might do wonders for Cody Bellinger’s MVP support.In 20 games before the rookie was promoted from Triple-A on April 25, the Dodgers averaged 4.3 runs per game, were shut out twice and languished below .500 (9-11). Over the next 102 games with the rookie slugger in their lineup on a regular basis, the Dodgers averaged 5.24 runs per game and steamrolled to the best record in baseball.But last Saturday in Detroit, Bellinger rolled his right ankle while making a catch near the wall in right field. A minor injury is all it takes to land on the 10-day DL with the Dodgers these days and Bellinger hasn’t played since.In the past seven games without him, the Dodgers have scored a total of 23 runs (3.29 per game), lost three times and been shut out twice in the past four games after being held to four hits in a 3-0 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers on Saturday night. They had gone 46 consecutive games without being blanked.Brewers starter Zach Davies handled the Dodgers rather easily for the second time this season. Davies held them to three hits in six scoreless innings in Milwaukee back in May and did the same over seven innings SaturdayDavies didn’t walk a batter, struck out seven and was really in jeopardy just twice – both with two outs. In the second inning, Brewers third baseman Travis Shaw couldn’t handle Yasiel Puig’s hard smash to his right and Puig made it to second while Shaw scrambled to retrieve the ball. When the Brewers were slow to cover third base in Shaw’s absence, Puig outraced them there with a headfirst slide.But Chase Utley grounded out to end the inning and stranded him there.Back-to-back singles by Utley and Austin Barnes with two outs in the fifth inning put runners at the corners against Davies. But he struck out pinch-hitter Adrian Gonzalez to end that mild threat.With Alex Wood on the DL nursing sternoclavicular joint inflammation —  as painful to the tongue as it is to the chest – and unable to make his start Saturday, the Dodgers opted for the “it-takes-a-village” approach, handing the day over to their bullpen.Ross Stripling ran the leadoff leg and was excellent. He gave the Dodgers three scoreless innings, allowing just one hit (to Davies) and walking one while striking out five of the 11 batters he faced.The relief relay that followed had a couple hitches.The Dodgers’ third pitcher, Josh Ravin, gave up a two-run home run to Brewers shortstop Orlando Arcia in the fifth inning. In the eighth, Luis Avilan had a streak of 14 consecutive scoreless appearances snapped when he gave up a single to Hernan Perez and an RBI double to Neil Walker.center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

Women’s EuroBasket: A gold medal reflects Spain’s golden generation

first_imgIn a typical post-game press conference, Spain Head Coach Lucas Mondelo begins by explaining his strategy for the game that has just ended in a very formulaic manner before opening up to questions. But at the end of the FIBA Women’s EuroBasket final against France he began talking straight from the heart. He said: “I’m not going to talk tactically about anything. https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/1f/40/laia-palau-spain-fiba_speq8ifohiel1sf2v9bb2ws8l.jpg?t=-790739573&w=500&quality=80 “After a long time with this team, it’s incredible how they are able to surprise me as a coach every day. I would like to thank everybody players and staff because I’m able to live this experience as the face of the team in these press conferences, but I’d like to thank everybody. And I would especially like to thank Laia Palau, because she makes every coach she plays for a championship coach.”Palau was sat next to Mondelo, grinning from ear-to-ear, holding back eyes full of joyful tears after her team won a second consecutive EuroBasket for the first time since the Soviet Union in 1991. And history was on the mind of the 39-year-old point guard, who said: “This group has grown up since 2013 and right now they are in the best moment as mature players. They are not old but their careers are amazing already, they know how to be on the court and have this experience.  “One day for sure it cannot be like this because we will be really old, but we are showing that experience is important. If your legs are following you, and your brain is working, I think this group can have at least two more years [of high level basketball], not me, but this group – they can play amazing basketball.”Another player who has been with the squad for a number of is Laura Nicholls, the second-longest tenured Spanish player in this iteration of the team. Holding the EuroBasket trophy with two medals around her neck – one gold, and another made of twine cut down from the hoop – she was also taking a moment to reminisce about the incredible run this Spanish team has put together: “In 2011, when we got eliminated from EuroBasket, we learned that it doesn’t really matter who you are, you have to give your best every second in practice or the game or you will go home. I remember having this feeling of emptiness, and we always took this away to get better as a team.“I think we can see how we have been growing up. On the court we have our own personality, our own way of playing – go hard or go home. I can see how it started changing in 2015 when we started winning several medals in a row. It doesn’t matter who we have in front of us, we don’t see any color or any national team or any players that can be better than us.”It certainly wasn’t going to be France, as the neighbouring nation will be feeling bleu after a lacklustre performance. After letting Marta Xargay get loose for three open threes in the first quarter for Spain, the French were playing from behind, and too few players turned up to play in the second half to get the team back in to the contest. One player that turned up was Bria Hartley. After going 2/4 in the first half, she came out of the locker room with plenty of energy and shot 4/5, including a step-back three-point shot after she had got in rhythm with consecutive scoring plays. She said: “I was just trying to go out there and work as hard as possible and just try to make plays for the team to have a fighting chance. The game didn’t really go the way that we wanted to but I tried to give it my all until the end.” https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/6a/cb/marta-xargay-spain-fiba_1keynz16xi40c1woqhg5i4ehi9.jpg?t=-790284461&w=500&quality=80 Sadly, it wasn’t enough, and once again it was left to France Head Coach Valerie Garnier to search for positives after a fourth runner-up experience in four straight EuroBasket tournaments. She said: “My team is very young but this is our fourth final in a row and it’s difficult because we would like to finish one EuroBasket with a victory, but it’s like this, we have to continue to work a lot.“It’s a very good experience for our young players. They have improved and they grown in this tournament and we have to prepare for the future.” The future for Spain, however, is hopeful for even greater things. While Palau hinted that she might not be playing in two years time, the team didn’t play with the MVP of the last EuroBasket, Alba Torrens. Before the next EuroBasket, however, is Tokyo 2020. Nicholls said: “I don’t think about Olympics at the moment. We all just deserve to enjoy this, go on holidays, to be with our family and when you bring it home to your family and friends you can start really enjoying it.”last_img read more

How the Panthers will approach their breakup with Cam Newton before 2020 season

first_imgNashville is close to Newton’s hometown of Atlanta, and the Titans are a decent team that will be moving on from Marcus Mariota and probably from Ryan Tannehill, too. Tampa Bay has some talented receivers to entice Newton if the Bucs decide to part ways with Jameis Winston.Redskins owner Daniel Snyder is fully capable of throwing big money at Newton if he thinks Dwayne Haskins needs more development time. Or how about the Bears if Mitchell Trubisky continues to regress? The Dolphins could be in play with their current QB mess, as could the Broncos if they’re not yet sold on Drew Lock. (And we know John Elway loves signing veteran QBs who are former stars.) But Miami and Denver could well be choosing a talented rookie passer high in April’s draft.Meanwhile, Hurney and his scouting staff will be closely watching the top college QBs.MORE ON NEWTON:Cam’s best fits for 2020, from Panthers to Dolphins Newton first will have to prove to team doctors around the league that his shoulder and foot are sound. Then he will have to swallow some pride and accept a slightly lower base salary — likely in the $10 million-$15 million range — plus big roster bonuses and performance incentives. Those bonuses and incentives would bring him up to the $25 million range if he returns to his three-time Pro Bowl level of play and gets a team into the playoffs.Newton is a competitor, and he will be out to prove the Panthers gave up on him too soon. It wouldn’t be shocking to see a motivated Newton make a comeback along the lines of Andrew Luck last season if he is able to get healthy and land with a team that has a good supporting cast.Who could that be? If I’m in Hurney’s shoes, I’m letting Newton go and giving Allen a slightly better deal — at least incentive-wise — than what he is scheduled to receive under an exclusive rights tender for a player who has one credited season ($585,000 in 2020). Then I’m drafting a QB in the first or second round from this talented incoming class and letting that player compete with Allen for the starting job.It’s almost as if Hurney was practicing his farewell speech when he said of Newton upon placing the QB on IR, “He’s one of the fiercest competitors I’ve been around during my 20-plus years in the league.” The Carolina GM will be repeating a version of that statement in the coming offseason as he bids farewell to the soon-to-be former face of the franchise.Jeff Diamond is a former president of the Titans and former vice president/general manager of the Vikings. He was selected NFL Executive of the Year in 1998. Diamond is currently a business and sports consultant who also does broadcast and online media work. He makes speaking appearances to corporate/civic groups and college classes on negotiation and sports business/sports management. He is the former chairman and CEO of The Ingram Group. Follow Jeff on Twitter: @jeffdiamondNFL. (Credit: Getty Images) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/cb/3c/cam-newton-getty-ftr-110519_ifi0kr2rwr451s10szunvw0qk.jpg?t=1021589966&w=500&quality=80 Newton was clearly not in peak form or fully healthy as he struggled with a 56 percent completion rate, no touchdowns, 1 interception and -2 rushing yards through losses to the Rams and Bucs to open this season before the foot injury cost him the final 14 games.Newton’s recent injury problems and high salary next season, combined with Kyle Allen’s quality play for the most part and a highly regarded 2020 QB draft class, will surely end the 2011 No. 1 overall pick’s tenure in Carolina.MORE: Panthers forced to confront three big questionsThe biggest problem for Newton is his timing contract-wise. Had he negotiated a new deal before the injuries piled up, with $100 million or so in guarantees now common with quality starting QBs, Hurney and coach Ron Rivera would be forced to be patient while Newton recovers from his foot injury before returning him to the lineup next season. But with Newton’s contract having just one season to go, the $2 million dead money hit on the Panthers’ salary cap is easy to absorb while they reap a $19 million cap savings once he is released.In order to avoid a potential injury grievance, Hurney will wait until the Panthers’ team doctor says Newton’s foot is sufficiently healed before releasing him. The GM will hope that happens before the start of the 2020 league year in March so the Panthers don’t have to carry his $21.1 million cap number into free agency.With a projected $43 million in 2020 cap space including Newton, the Panthers can wait until he is healthy before letting him go. Carolina will still have the money to add players in free agency, and they can use some of the Newton savings after his exit on an inevitable extension to make Christian McCaffrey, the NFL’s best dual threat player, the league’s highest-paid back.MORE FROM DIAMOND:CMC should earn record contract from Panthers soonAt 31, a healthy Newton is better than a lot of starting QBs in the league. Despite his stats being down, he led Carolina to the playoffs with a 11-5 record in 2017 and played well in a close playoff loss in New Orleans. He had a better year statistically last season even as he struggled through the shoulder pain that eventually shut him down.​Hurney also surely believes Newton still has value if healthy, but I doubt the GM will offer a reduced-salary-plus-incentives deal — which Newton would surely decline, preferring to hit free agency. Hurney will try to trade him to a QB-hungry team. But it’s doubtful any GM would want to inherit Newton’s 2020 base salary of $18.6 million (plus his $500,000 offseason workout bonus) when they figure he can be signed for less in an incentive-laden contract once he’s released. It’s also highly doubtful Newton would agree to a sign-and-trade deal involving a pay reduction, as he will prefer a competition to sign him. (Getty Images) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/ab/7b/cam-newton-110619-gettyjpg_hrpnjridubs61omxhtzweaif6.jpg?t=1100692950&w=500&quality=80 Thanks for the memories, Cam. Sorry, but it’s time for you to move on. We can’t count on you to stay healthy and can’t pay you big bucks to sit on the sideline.Such is the message that soon will be delivered by Panthers general manager Marty Hurney to the 2015 NFL MVP who led Carolina to Super Bowl 50. It’s the logical move for the franchise to make with the quarterback who was placed on IR with a Lisfranc injury almost a full year after a shoulder injury cost him the final two games of a 7-9 season and required offseason surgery. No more holding a roster spot in hopes of a late-season recovery and return.last_img read more

NBA Draft lottery 2020, explained: New date & updated odds to win the No. 1 overall pick

first_img6.2Hornets6. 34.532.16.80.4>0.0 65.919.01.2>0.0>0.09.2Team 8.629.820.63.70.1 The 2020 NBA Draft lottery was originally scheduled to take place in May along with the combine, but the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic put all draft-related events on hold for months as the league scrambled to adjust its major offseason events.While the eight teams already eliminated from playoff contention know their lottery odds, the rest of lottery field has not yet been finalized. Seeding games inside of the NBA’s “bubble” will determine which teams will be heading to the postseason and which teams will be crossing their fingers for a high draft pick. 77.612.60.4>0.010.3Team 7.0Team 4.1Hawks12.512.211.911.57.225.716.72.2 19.734.112.91.3>0.0 4.4Pistons10.510.510.610.52.219.626.78.70.6 3.7Cavaliers14.013.412.712.027.820.0 5.5Bulls7. This year’s draft class doesn’t have a Zion Williamson-level talent, but there are a few intriguing prospects available. Depending on the teams near the top of the draft board, picks could quickly turn into trade assets.Here’s everything you need to know about the 2020 NBA Draft lottery, including the latest odds for every team involved.When is the NBA Draft lottery in 2020?Date: Aug. 20, 2020Time: TBDTV: ESPNStream: Watch ESPN appThe 2020 NBA Draft lottery drawing will take place on Aug. 20. The NBA has not made any official announcement regarding the combine.How does the 2020 NBA Draft lottery work?The lottery odds are based on the records of teams when the 2019-20 season was suspended on March 11. The eight eliminated teams already know their lottery odds (see table below), and the rest of the slots will be filled by the teams that fail to advance to the playoffs. As for the teams outside of the lottery, their odds will be based on winning percentage after adding their records as of March 11 to their records in seeding games.NBA Draft lottery oddsHere are each team’s lottery odds with the percent chance to land each pick (via Tankathon). 50.725.93.00.1>0.0 5.0Knicks9. 92.02.312.4Team 3.9Timberwolves14.013.412.712.014.826.07.0 TEAM1234567891011121314AVGWarriors14.013.412.711.947.9 8.0Team 97.613.7NBA mock draft 2020SN’s mock draft following the suspension of play in March, curated by NBA Draft expert Chris Stone, takes a look at the top prospects in this year’s class.Here is Stone’s projected top five for this year’s draft:Warriors — Anthony Edwards, GeorgiaCavaliers — James Wiseman, MemphisTimberwolves — LaMelo Ball, IllawarraHawks — Isaac Okoro, AuburnPistons — Tyrese Maxey, KentuckyCheck out the rest of Stone’s mock draft here.last_img read more

David Joy appointed as Chief Executive of England Golf

first_img24 Jan 2013 David Joy appointed as Chief Executive of England Golf David Joy has been appointed by the Board of England Golf as the organisation’s new Chief Executive Officer and will take up his role on 22nd April 2013. Since 2005 David has been Director of Derbyshire Sport and will bring with him over 25 years of management experience within national and local sports organisations, more than 12 of which have been as a Chief Executive. Derbyshire Sport is one of England’s larger and more established county sports partnerships where David has managed a large team and led the development and implementation of the Derbyshire plan for sport. As a result the county is well on track with its ambition to become one of the most active and successful sporting counties in England by 2020. Within this role David has directed Derbyshire’s relationships with Sport England, Sports Coach UK and many national governing bodies of sport, including England Golf. Prior to this David spent six years as Chief Executive of Scottish Athletics where he led a modernisation process that resulted in significant increases in membership of the governing body and the creation of a number of long term commercial partnerships. During this time he worked closely with The Scottish Executive, sportscotland, Events Scotland, Health Education Board for Scotland and UK Athletics. David is a keen golfer and until recently was a member of Trentham Park Golf Club. Born in Stoke on Trent David spent the first eight years of his career as a PE teacher and Head of PE before embarking on his sports career with a national development role with English Volleyball. Speaking about his appointment, David said: “This is a really exciting time for amateur golf following the merger of the men’s and women’s game. I am delighted to be given the opportunity to join England Golf and to work with the board, the staff team, the volunteers at national, county and club level and our key partners, as we seek to take advantage of the many opportunities for golf development throughout England.” Nigel Evans, Chair of the England Golf Board commented, “We are delighted that David has agreed to join us. His extensive experience in the governance of sport and working with a variety of stakeholders, including legislative and parliamentary bodies will be extremely valuable. We are looking forward to David using that experience to bring future development and further growth to England Golf.”last_img read more