“Jermain is one of the best strikers this league has ever seen and he is a fantastic professional,” Sherwood said. “When he doesn’t start he is always ready to come on and when he does come on he wants to change the game and show that he is good enough. “We have an abundance of options up front. Robbie (Roberto Soldado) has scored goals wherever he has been and Ade (Emmanuel Adebayor) has been good also, so there is competition for places and there will be even when Jermain leaves.” Tottenham made hard work of their win on Saturday. In the first half they were outplayed by Palace, who would have gone ahead had Jason Puncheon not blazed a penalty high and wide following a foul by Mousa Dembele on Marouane Chamakh. Dembele admits Spurs need to up their game in the coming weeks against better opposition if they are to maintain their push for Champions League qualification. The Belgian said: “Against other teams we would have lost the game. It’s difficult to know why we started so slowly. We were not good in the first half. “We played sloppy balls. We weren’t concentrated. In the dressing room the gaffer told us (at half-time) we needed to concentrate more and work harder and I think we did.” Tottenham manager Tim Sherwood is sure Jermain Defoe’s game will not deteriorate when he moves to Canada. Defoe began his Spurs swansong in fine style on Saturday, scoring in a hard-fought 2-0 win over Crystal Palace. After months of speculation, Tottenham confirmed this week that Defoe will leave White Hart Lane at the end of February to join Major League Soccer (MLS) franchise Toronto FC. Press Association David Beckham’s international career began to unravel when he crossed the Atlantic, but Sherwood thinks standards in the MLS have improved greatly since then, and that Defoe will still be good enough to challenge for a place in England’s World Cup squad this summer. “I think we have to give a bit more credit to the MLS. I don’t think it’s a c*** league,” Sherwood said. “I think it’s OK. Jermain needs to play regularly and he sees that as the place where he will get it. “I am sure playing in the MLS won’t hinder him from being in the England squad. Wherever he plays he will score goals.” Defoe is something of a cult hero at Tottenham. The 31-year-old is the club’s fifth-highest scorer of all time with 143 goals in 362 appearances. The England striker, who has been at the club for a total of nine years over two spells, has become something of a peripheral figure of late though. Defoe has started just three Barclays Premier League matches this term, but to his credit he has not kicked up a fuss.
Update on the latest in sports: — The head of China’s football association says teams will implement temporary player pay cuts of 30% to 50% to help teams manage losses from the coronavirus outbreak. The official (Chen Xuyuan) also told state broadcaster CCTV that matches would be resumed on a staggered schedule but gave no specific dates.— Sporting events in Oregon are likely to be without large crowds likely through at least the end of September because of the new coronavirus. Oregon Gov. Kate Brown announced steps the state is taking in its reopening next week. Brown asked those planning large gatherings to cancel or significantly modify plans for anything scheduled in September.— The NFL has set protocols for reopening team facilities and has told the 32 teams to have them in place by May 15. Commissioner Roger Goodell mapped out several phases of protocols in a memo obtained by The Associated Press. The first phase to deal with the coronavirus pandemic would involve a limited number of non-player personnel. The individual clubs would decide which employees could return to the facility and when, once the buildings reopen. No players would be permitted in the facility except to continue therapy and rehabilitation for injuries that were underway when facilities were ordered closed in late March.— The Cleveland Cavaliers are one of a handful of NBA teams planning to reopen their training facilities today for individual player workouts. Coach J.B. Bickerstaff said the team has worked with health officials to ensure players and coaches are safe.— NBA teams have been asked to help the Mayo Clinic with a study that could help researchers come closer to finding a solution to the coronavirus problem. Mayo Clinic officials need volunteers for a study largely centered around antibodies. Teams were told that the study would help doctors understand the prevalence of COVID-19 among infected individuals who were asymptomatic or experienced only mild symptoms. UNDATED (AP) — IndyCar has gotten the green flag to finally start its season in Texas.The race will be run June 6 without spectators at Texas Motor Speedway.IndyCar President Jay Frye says IndyCar worked closely with track and public health officials on a plan to “ensure the safety of our event participants.”The June season opener will be on a condensed schedule with practice, qualifying and the race taking place on the same day. There will be strict access guidelines limiting the number of personnel on site, with health screening system administered to all participants and personal protection equipment provided to everyone entering the facility. Social distancing protocols will be in place.In other developments related to the coronavirus pandemic: The tweets weren’t up for long before disappearing from Antetokounmpo’s account. The Bucks said in a statement that an investigation is underway.OBIT-MIKE STORENEx-ABA commissioner Mike Storen, dad of Hannah Storm, dies at 84Mike Storen, a former ABA commissioner and multisport marketing whiz and the father of ESPN broadcaster Hannah Storm, has died. He was 84.Storm says her father died Thursday at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta of complications from cancer. — Fans will be allowed to enter baseball stadiums today for games in Taiwan for the first time this season. It is part of a gradual easing of restrictions amid the pandemic. The China Professional Baseball League said up to 1,000 people would be permitted to enter ballparks after an agreement between the league and Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Center.— New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio doesn’t see games returning to Yankee Stadium or Citi Field very quickly, at least not with fans. De Blasio says bigger events are going to be one of the last things that will really fit the equation as the country restarts. He says the perfect time to reopen big events is when the new coronavirus has been “beaten back to next to nothing.”— WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman expects professional boxing to return without spectators and with judges officiating by video from home. Sulaiman said the World Boxing Council has produced a protocol for fights during the coronavirus pandemic that limit, for instance, a four-fight card to about 40-50 people at a venue.— More than 30 workers have accepted voluntary severance packages from the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee. It’s part of the organization’s attempt to trim up to 20% of its expenses in response to shortfalls caused by COVID-19. Furloughs and involuntary layoffs are expected to begin next week.— The televised match involving Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and two of the NFL’s greatest quarterbacks is raising $10 million for COVID-19 relief. Turner Sports is producing the May 24 event that will be simulcast on its networks, including TNT and TBS. Woods and Peyton Manning will take on Mickelson and Tom Brady at Medalist Golf Club. The Texans won a regular-season game at Arrowhead Stadium in 2019, then blew a 24-0 lead in the divisional round of the playoffs.Another highlight of the opening weekend will have Tom Brady’s regular-season debut with Tampa Bay against Drew Brees at New Orleans on Sept. 13 — the first matchup of age 40-plus quarterbacks in NFL history.The opening of SoFi Stadium in the Los Angeles area that Sunday night has the Rams hosting the Cowboys. Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas will debut on the Monday night, Sept. 21, with the Raiders facing Brady and the Buccaneers.The NFL schedule, not to mention offseason activities and the preseason, is considered tentative given the current prohibition on large gatherings.In other NFL news: Officials from Kansas have said coach Bill Self and assistant Kurtis Townsend said they were unaware of the transactions, backing up a statement Gassnola made during sworn testimony.NBA-ANTETOKOUNMPO-ACCOUNTS HACKEDBucks, relatives say Antetokounmpo’s social media was hackedMILWAUKEE (AP) — Giannis Antetokounmpo’s (YAH’-nihs an-teh-toh-KOON’-pohz) social media accounts were hacked on Thursday afternoon and several bizarre and offensive tweets were posted, according to the Milwaukee Bucks, Antetokounmpo’s brother and the player’s representatives.More than a dozen tweets popped up in Antetokounmpo’s feed in the span of about five minutes, and they appeared to clearly be the work of someone other than the reigning MVP. The tweets included racial slurs, profane attacks on other players and a claim that Antetokounmpo had the coronavirus. Associated Press — Soccer teams will be allowed to use two extra substitutes per match to protect players during a backlog of games caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The International Football Association Board says competition organizers can now approve teams making five changes with a sixth in extra time. IFAB says the temporary rule is available to “competitions which have either started or are intended to start, but are scheduled to be completed by Dec. 31.” Leagues which typically end in May face a congested program into July and August to complete their season.CFL-COMMISSIONER-CANCELLATIONCFL commissioner: Canceling season most likely scenarioOTTAWA (AP) — Canadian Football League Commissioner Randy Ambrosie said the most likely scenario is to cancel the season because of the COVID-19 pandemic.Ambrosie made the admission for the first time while testifying Thursday to a House of Commons standing committee on finance. — The New England Patriots have signed four members of their 2020 draft class. Linebackers Josh Uche and Cassh Maluia, kicker Justin Rohrwasser and offensive lineman Justin Herron have all agreed to terms on rookie contracts. The Patriots entered last month’s draft with 12 picks and after making several trades over three days, wound up selecting 10 players.— The lawyer for the wife of Baltimore Ravens safety Earl Thomas said she is being subjected to an “unfounded ongoing investigation” by Texas police after she allegedly pointed a gun at her husband’s head upon finding him in bed with another woman last month. According to a police affidavit, Nina Thomas tracked down her husband at a short-term rental home in Austin in the early morning hours of April 13 and found him and his brother, Seth, in bed with two women.— Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh is pushing for a change that would allow football players to enter the NFL draft after their freshman or sophomore seasons in college. Currently, players are not eligible for the NFL draft until they have been out of high school for at least three years. It is a policy in the collective bargaining agreement that runs through the 2030 season.NCAA-COMPENSATING ATHLETESSenators send letters to NCAA leaders with NIL questions UNDATED (AP) — The chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee has sent a letter to NCAA leaders, conferences and schools requesting details about how college athletes can be compensated for their names, images and likenesses.Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., sent 20 questions to each Power Five conference, dozens of colleges and universities and committees at each of the NCAA’s three divisions.Wicker’s letter comes a day after Sens. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., and Cory Booker, D-N.J., released a letter to NCAA President Mark Emmert urging the association to take further action on name, image and likeness compensation for college athletes.VIRUS OUTBREAK-SPORTSIndyCar to open delayed season in Texas Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditNFL-SCHEDULEKicking off: Texans at Chiefs to open season Sept. 10UNDATAED (AP) — The Kansas City Chiefs will open defense of their Super Bowl championship by hosting Houston on Sept. 10 in the NFL’s annual kickoff game — pending developments in the coronavirus pandemic, of course. News broke last week that the CFL had requested up to $150 million Canadian in assistance from the federal government. During his testimony, Ambrosie said the league’s future is “very much in jeopardy.”KANSAS-NCAA INFRACTIONSNCAA calls alleged Kansas basketball violations “egregious”LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — The NCAA struck back at the University of Kansas and its men’s basketball program Thursday, calling five Level I violations that are alleged to have occurred “egregious” and arguing that they undermine and threaten” college athletics.In the latest in a series of back-and-forth filings, the NCAA reiterated in a 92-page response its claim that Adidas representatives were acting as boosters when two of them — T.J. Gassnolo and Jim Gatto — helped to arrange payments to prospective recruits. Those transactions became a central point in a wide-ranging FBI probe into college basketball that has ensnared Kansas, Louisville and several other high-profile programs. May 8, 2020 Known for his hearty laugh and creative mind, Storen rose to executive spots in basketball, football, baseball and tennis during a four-decade career in sports.Storen was general manager of the Indiana Pacers and Kentucky Colonels and president of the Atlanta Hawks. He owned the ABA’s Memphis Sounds, worked for the Cincinnati Royals of the NBA and the Houston Astros.,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6
VERONA — Season’s over.Wisconsin’s reigning NCAA national champion women’s hockey team had its season ended in tear-jerking fashion Saturday as the Ohio State Buckeyes did not allow the Badgers a single win in the postseason.After an unstable season, the Badgers were looking at the playoffs as a fresh start. Instead of a second chance they were confronted with nothing but losses, something the team has little experience with in the postseason.“It’s tough, we’re not used to losing our first game in a playoff series and having tough competition like that,” sophomore forward Brooke Ammerman said.Unable to shake the inconsistencies that have plagued them all season, the Badgers found themselves fighting to keep their season alive Saturday night. The seniors led the way, helping drive the game into overtime, but it wasn’t enough as the Buckeyes dominated the extra period.Adjusting to the short playoff run was difficult for the Badgers.In the past four years, Wisconsin has ended its season in the Frozen Four. To not even reach the NCAA tournament was heartbreaking.“It’s really hard,” senior defender Kyla Sanders said. “Over the past four years we’ve always made it to the Frozen Four; it’s very different that’s for sure.”“It’s a little sad,” senior goalie Alannah McCready added. “We definitely didn’t want to end it this way, but it’s how it happens so it’s time to move on.”As the story has been all season, the Badgers were unable to stay consistent throughout both games. Friday they started strong, but blew a 2-0 lead in the second period.In game two Saturday, the Badgers fell into a 0-2 deficit in the first eight minutes. They fought their way back, but still never really clicked at the Eagle’s Nest.The Badgers were simply unable to stay consistent throughout all 60 minutes of the games.“The key word today was consistency,” DeKeyser said. “Almost the entire game aside from those first couple minutes of the first we weren’t coming out very strong, but from then on we figured out you need to be consistent. … That’s something we’ve got to work on. We’ve got to be consistent for 60 minutes; we can’t start strong and then not finish strong. It’s a work in progress.”Senior forward Jasmine Giles credits the inconsistencies to never overcoming the changes the team faced this year.“It’s rough. All of our other seasons have been ended in the Frozen Four, in the final game,” Giles said. “It was a tough year. We had so many new faces and a whole new coaching staff. It was just something we didn’t overcome. We were getting there, but we didn’t do it.”No matter how upsetting the losses are, the squad can only learn from the experience and move forward.“It’s a heavy moment in the locker room right now, obviously for our seniors who’ve had pretty tremendous careers here as Badgers and to have it cut short, this is different for them and it’s tough,” interim head coach Tracey DeKeyser said. “We talked about how losing can help you understand what it takes to win. Hopefully the returners understand that you don’t just get handed trophies or championships.”DeKeyser credits the seniors for the determination they have had throughout their careers.“I thought it was nice fitting that Sanders scored the tying goal and (Emily) Kranz played excellent all weekend defensively,” DeKeyser said. “Giles has contributed tremendously over the past three series with quite a few points, and [McCready] was able to get starts in net both night; just give them credit for surviving right to the very last second.”
UW sophomore center Pete Konz celebrates with Paul Bunyans Axe after the Badgers\’ 41-23 win over Minnesota.[/media-credit]With a second half surge and an eventual 41-23 victory over Minnesota, the Wisconsin Badgers put themselves back in the Big Ten title hunt and kept the Axe in their possession for the seventh straight year.That gives Badger fans the all-important bragging rights over their hated border rivals and UW head coach Bret Bielema was happy to give it to them.“I always get a kick out of this week. Everybody just wishes you good luck for normal games but everyone was saying ‘coach keep the axe’ and it’s just a different week,” Bielema said. “It’s important to anybody that loves Wisconsin, and we do, and it’s great to give it to the fans.”After earning a 14-9 halftime lead, UW (5-1) played with a purpose in the second half, scoring touchdowns on consecutive drives to start the third quarter.James White took a pitch off left tackle and scored from eight yards out to give the Badgers a 12-point lead, and John Clay added another touchdown eight minutes later to establish a comfortable 28-9 advantage.“We always talk about starting fast and we were psyched coming out of the locker room to prove who we are,” sophomore center Pete Konz said. “We didn’t think we did that in the first half.”“We stubbed our toe a little in the second quarter and went in at halftime, and the coaches talked through some things, offense and defense,” Bielema said. “We really came out humming in the third quarter.”The first score of the second half came after a sloppy 11-play, 64-yard drive. UW benefited from a third down defensive holding call and a facemask penalty that occurred on a tackle that brought Scott Tolzien down for a sack.Those two Gopher penalties allowed UW to stay on the field and come away with a momentum-swinging score.“It was crucial to score after half and it wasn’t really a clean drive. There were so many penalties,” senior guard John Moffitt said. “We were given a couple gifts, but I mean it was great it went our way.”UW added a third straight touchdown early in the fourth quarter as Clay rumbled into the end zone for his third touchdown of the day. The powerful score from eight yards out gave Wisconsin a 35-9 lead.But Minnesota finally answered less than a minute later thanks to a jaw-dropping 22-yard touchdown reception from Da’Jon McKnight. McKnight was running stride-for-stride with UW cornerback Antonio Fenelus but the junior wideout laid out and fought off Fenelus to make the catch.But UW had a quick response to that score thanks to the efforts of White.The true freshman tailback, who ran for 119 yards on the day, set the Badgers up on the doorstep after leaving Gopher safety Ryan Collado in the dust. White reached the second level, pulled out an ankle-breaking juke, and sprinted down to the one-yard line.“I just did a little move to freeze the corner and ran right by him,” White said.From there, White finished the drive with a touchdown run straight up the gut.Minnesota added a late touchdown on a fourth-down jump-ball that McKnight brought down in the corner of the endzone, but the Gophers played from behind the entire day and it was an uphill battle for UM throughout.Jared Abbrederis opened the scoring six minutes in and in the process became the first UW wide receiver to score a touchdown in 2010. Tolzien, who finished 17-for-23 on the day, hit the freshman on a quick slant and the connection made for an easy 3-yard score.“I saw the safety was down so I know the pass was coming to me,” Abbrederis said. “I was real excited in my stance and I knew I just had to execute the play.”Clay added a one-yard touchdown toward the end of the first quarter but Minnesota came back with nine unanswered points to end the half. After a Marqueis Gray touchdown grab, Eric Ellestad missed the PAT but it proved to be irrelevant as the Gophers dropped to 1-5 on the season.The victory means UW’s seniors have kept the axe in their possession throughout their entire collegiate careers, and that’s a point of pride for everyone in the program.“It means a lot because this is one of the first things you learn as a recruit and as a player. You’re preached of the importance of that axe,” Tolzien said. “We know how much it means to Wisconsin and the people in this program.”
Madeleine Mullaney, a freshman majoring in environmental studies, participates in the annual Pie-a-Bruin fundraiser at Tommy Trojan Tuesday. The event was organized by the USC and UCLA branches of Camp Kesem, a group that brings summer camp to kids whose parents have been affected by cancer.
A quick glance at USC baseball’s record would tell you it was a difficult season, but to just look at the numbers wouldn’t be fair.The Trojans were picked to finish ninth in the Pac-10, without a full-time coach, and fresh off a last-place finish in the conference.But the team finished seventh, the program’s best since 2006. Frank Cruz was appointed full-time coach May 19, and the Trojans dealt with their schedule valiantly, taking series from then-No. 11 Stanford, then-No. 6 Arizona State and then-No. 2 Oregon State , as well as knocking off then-No. 13 UCLA at Dodger Stadium.Top talent · USC first baseman Ricky Oropesa, who led USC in the triple crown categories, was drafted 116th overall by the San Francisco Giants. – Summer Trojan file photo “We made a lot of strides this year,” Cruz said. “The guys got a lot more comfortable with me and visa-versa.”At nearly every position, the Trojans had players step up offensively and defensively. Junior first baseman Ricky Oropesa showed he was a worthy preseason All-American, leading the team in batting average (.322), RBI (44) and extra-base hits (18), among others. Senior second baseman Joe De Pinto hit .300 for the year and led the team in on-base percentage and steals. In addition to his reliability behind the plate, junior catcher Kevin Roundtree also hit leadoff for the Trojans and led the team in runs scored.Following Oropesa’s move from first to third, sophomore infielder Adam Landecker was called upon to fill the void at first base. Landecker had a breakout season, hitting .280, committing just three errors on the year.Junior Matt Foat proved more than capable in left field and Alex Sherrod shined in right field. The junior led the team in slugging at .486, and was second in almost every other stat category behind.But perhaps no position player was as impressive as James Roberts. As a true freshman, Roberts started every single game at the most important defensive position — shortstop.“At the start of the season, we thought [Roberts] would pitch a bit for us,” Cruz said. “But he was so impressive at short, we just couldn’t move him.”But the uncertainty surrounding the Trojans position players was nothing compared to their pitching staff, but despite this each of USC’s three starters more than earned their spots.Junior Andrew Triggs returned as the Trojans top starter, finishing with a 3.67 ERA and led the team with 72 strikeouts. Triggs was especially brilliant down the stretch, going 3-1 with a 1.66 ERA in his final six games.Austin Wood finished the season with a 5.61 ERA and 34 walks to his 50 strikeouts. But the junior flashed brilliance, including going eight strong innings against then-No. 11 Stanford and then-No. 2 Oregon State.Senior Logan Odom was the most consistent starter, ending the season with a 3.96 ERA.But for all the strides the team made this year, they might have lost many key players to the draft. Oropesa was selected in the third round by the San Franciso Giants, Odom was selected in the eighth round by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Wood was selected in the sixth round by the Angels, junior pitcher Chad Smith was selected in the seventh round by the Minnesota Twins and DePinto was selected in the 21st round by the Chicago White Sox. The success of players like Sherrod, Roundtree and Triggs this year could cost the Trojans in the draft, too.But Cruz’s focus is undeterred by what the draft could do to his present — or future — team.“Bottom line is at a program like USC, you expect to be playing in the postseason every year,” Cruz said. “And it’s disappointing we’re not right now.”
Published on August 24, 2017 at 3:20 pm Contact Josh: firstname.lastname@example.org | @Schafer_44 Facebook Twitter Google+ Growing up in Long Beach, California, A.J. McKee dealt with his fair share of bullies. One day, the then-135 pound wrestler remembered playing basketball with his friends when a “Crip gang member” approached the group. He kicked the boys’ basketball in the air, McKee said, and glared toward them.“What are you going to do about it?” he asked the group of boys. McKee responded with a knockout strike to the gang member’s face. The incident wasn’t McKee’s first unsanctioned bout. Several street fights forced McKee’s father, Antonio, a famous mixed martial arts fighter and trainer, to face the truth he’d long attempted to ignore: Fighting was in his son’s blood. “Knocking someone’s head off their shoulders, that’s what I live for,” McKee said. “I live to hurt people. It’s a sick thing, but hey, it is what is.” AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe now-22-year-old McKee is undefeated and entering his ninth Bellator MMA fight on Friday at Bellator 182. In the featherweight division, the 5-foot-10, 145-pound fighter has finished six of his eight fights — four by knockout or technical knockout and the other two by submission. McKee (8-0) will fight against journeyman Blair Tugman (10-6) at Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, New York. “This kid is dynamic,” Scott Coker, the president of Bellator MMA said. “He’s put on some great fights, he’s entertaining, and he’s got that swagger about him. We have some high hopes for him.”McKee grew up surrounded by MMA fighters at Antonio’s gym, watching future Ultimate Fighting Championship stars Rampage Jackson and Dan Henderson train in their primes. But he has an advantage the MMA greats lacked, Antonio said. McKee solely trained with him, beginning wrestling at 3 years old and jiu-jitsu a few years later.McKee is a natural southpaw, and many in the MMA call him “The Mercenary.” He can fight with either leg leading his fight stance, something he’s worked on since the beginning. He strikes equally as hard with his left or right leg and is equipped with a ground game similar to his father, who once competed for over seven-straight years without a loss. “He’s a complete, universal, f*cking soldier,” Antonio said. “He’s complete. He’s long. His weapons, he’s been trained how to use the frames, the angles. And the more we wait, the better he’s getting.”In the cage, his father’s influence shows. Antonio doesn’t tell his son which moves to make, but he asks what McKee sees inside the ring. Against Brandon Phillips in Bellator 171, McKee saw an advantage in reach. Despite being hit by two low blows in the groin area and consistent taunting from Phillips, McKee did not derail. He fought from a distance and prevented Philips from getting close enough to strike his body. There was no knockout, but after three full rounds, the decision ended unanimously in McKee’s favor. In his most recent fight at Bellator 178, McKee saw something different. He saw an opening for a kick and knocked out Dominic Mazzotta, his opponent, just 75 seconds into the fight. “I’m just unorthodox. You never (know) what you’re gonna get, or what’s going to happen with A.J.,” McKee said, breaking into third-person. “If he feels like kicking today, if he feels like punching today, if he feels like taking someone down and submitting them today. “You just never know what you’re gonna get, but you’re going to get a show.” Comments
They will be split evenly between the counties three race tracks – Thurles, Clonmel and Tipperary.Powerstown Park in Clonmel kicks things off with a meeting on Thursday January 11th.Thurles get their season underway a few days later on Sunday January 21st. Photo: © clonmelraces.ie The first meeting of 2018 in Limerick Junction will be an evening meeting on April 10th.In all there will be a total of 363 fixtures at courses across the country next year – the highest number ever.
Lakers practice early hoping to answer all questions How athletes protesting the national anthem has evolved over 17 years Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersThe Lakers could sorely use Kuzma, a 6-foot-8 scoring wing who averaged 18.7 ppg last season. He plays at a position where the team has shallow depth, and his offensive game could bring a big boost when Anthony Davis or LeBron James are sitting.Kuzma feels that urgency, too, but he’s become comfortable over the last few months trying to take his time. He could miss a few more games, but he also feels secure that when he returns, he’ll have a clear-cut role with the Lakers.“I’m anxious, but at the same time it’s not really frustrating because I know my time’s gonna come when it comes,” he said. “Kind of just taking a control-what-you-can-control mindset going after it.”Both Kuzma and Rajon Rondo, who coach Frank Vogel said would miss a third straight game against the Hornets, are holes in the rotation. Kuzma has been out since August, and it’s been hard for the medical staff to predict how his injury will respond.“You treat it either with rest or however they’re treating it in the treating room and you see how he responds,” he said. “Some injuries respond quicker than others, but this one is a little bit of a wild card from the standpoint of not knowing exactly what the timeline’s going to look like.” Kuzma said the bone in his ankle was stressed from overuse. The most effective treatment, rest, sometimes feels like not doing much at all. But Kuzma’s reached a point where the progression can be more readily seen.Kuzma said there hasn’t been any scares or setbacks with his injury so far, even if the progression hasn’t gone as quickly as he’d like. He’s soothed by the feeling that he’ll be on the court soon enough.“I get super excited, because I know all the work that I put in this summer, and I feel like what this team needs is exactly what I worked on this summer,” he said. “It’s gonna be a surprise to a lot of people.”AD could close at center oftenThe Lakers made a much-discussed shakeup at halftime against the Utah Jazz on Friday, sliding Anthony Davis over to center to help secure the first win of the season. Davis has made plain that his preference is to play power forward, but Frank Vogel also showed he won’t hesitate to use Davis at the 5-spot if he feels like it will win the game. And there’s a good chance that Davis could play a lot of center in late minutes this season.“It’s something that we definitely are going to build in, all throughout the preseason we always built in at least a small stretch of the game where he plays 5,” Vogel said. “I envision us closing a lot of games that way, so I don’t want to get to finish line having not seen that at all and gotten familiar with how it’s different for our team.”Related Articles Trail Blazers, Grizzlies advance to NBA play-in game; Suns, Spurs see playoff dreams dashed Vogel has emphasized that the lineup could be one the Lakers turn to in the postseason, and he is tempted to play it more because it can be “lethal.” But he’s also keen to keep Davis healthy and avoid the bruising that comes with going toe-to-toe with the league’s biggest post players.At the same time, even Davis understands how his talents work well at center. Asked about his five blocks against the Jazz, he said the shift to the 5 was the main factor in his lockdown defense at the rim.“Being at the 5 the second half of the game a couple days ago, it kept me in the paint a lot on Rudy (Gobert) which meant anytime anybody was able to drive to the basket I was able to get a contest and ultimately block the shot,” he said. “I think the more shots I can block, the less attempts they can get at the rim, the more possessions we get to have and the more we can get out and run, the easier the game is going to be for everyone.”BrieflyRajon Rondo underwent a precautionary MRI on Saturday that confirmed the point guard had a strained right calf. While he was listed as out for his third straight game Sunday night, he is still considered day-to-day by the team. Rondo was seen after Sunday’s shootaround practicing ball-handling with assistant coach Phil Handy. Lakers, Clippers schedules set for first round of NBA playoffs Trail Blazers beat Grizzlies in play-in, earn first-round series with the Lakers EL SEGUNDO — The process of recovery is slow, often frustrating work.On Friday, Kyle Kuzma was able to play his first, full-contact four-on-four scrimmage in more than two months. The session was all in half court and lasted 12 minutes at most.Two days later, it was the same scenario, just 25 minutes. And that’s the pattern it’s been throughout his rehab from a left ankle stress reaction — sometimes with steps forward, but sometimes just staying in place. Kuzma knew it would take some time to heal, but sometimes not knowing how long it will take can be a bit exasperating.“Honestly I don’t even know my timeline,” he told reporters Sunday morning at his first media scrum since media day. “It’s just kinda working off the progressions. Go 25 minutes a day, if I feel good tomorrow, then it’s the next thing.”
Gilman started his collegiate career at Navy but traded his naval uniform in for a Fighting Irish jersey. Gilman brought his leadership abilities from the Naval Academy to South Bend where he had six forced fumbles and three interceptions in his two years as a starter. Gilman struggles in coverage and missed 13 tackles in 2019, but could be a good special teams contributor at the NFL level.Jalen Elliot, SProjected: Round 7, Pick No. 245 (49ers)Elliot was a three-year starter at Notre Dame, but his 4.80 40-yard dash shows his lack of speed that left him exposed in coverage. He is a strong tackler but his coverage ability is what puts him on the fringe of being drafted. Notre Dame will have a strong presence in the middle rounds of the 2020 NFL Draft. Cole Kmet could be the first tight end drafted, and Chase Claypool dominance at the NFL Combine in February could push him up the draft. The Fighting Irish finished the 2019 season 11-2 thanks to the strong depth from these future NFL Draft picks. Here are the Fighting Irish players SN’s Vinnie Iyer projects to be selected in the 2020 NFL Draft, according to our seven-round mock draft. NFL DRAFT BIG BOARD: Ranking the top 100 prospects in 2020NFL mock draft 2020: Notre Dame’s projected picksCole Kmet, TEProjected: Round 2, Pick No. 44 (Colts)Kmet was a four-star tight end recruit and just as good, if not better as a baseball prospect. He was drafted in the fifth round of the 2017 MLB draft by the White Sox, but elected to play football and baseball at Notre Dame instead. Kmet is reliable and athletic enough to have a long career in the NFL. He is a big, physical receiver with the ball in the air, but has plenty of room to improve his blocking.Vinnie Iyer: The Colts need to also find Rivers an athletic mismatch-creating tight end to complement what Jack Doyle does inline for them. Kmet (6-6, 262 pounds) is still developing as a run-blocker, but his size, speed, quickness and hands make him a top-flight receiver for the position.Julian Okwara, EDGEProjected: Round 2, Pick No. 54 (Bills)Okwara might be one of the players whose stock could take a hit due to the coronavirus pandemic. He wasn’t able to work out at the combine due to a fractured left fibula that ended his senior season with four games to play. The injury could give teams hesitation, but it also didn’t allow Okwara to show off his speed and quickness, his most tantalizing traits. Okwara comes in the tall, but relatively slight frame of a 3-4 outside linebacker. He has a high ceiling thanks to the combination of his explosive quickness and the physical mold to add weight and muscle. Okwara doesn’t seem to utilize many pass rush moves, relying too much on his athleticism. Under the right guidance, Okwara has the traits to be pro bowl player if he puts everything together. Iyer: The Bills need some younger depth to help them get to the quarterback with Shaq Lawson gone. Okwara (6-4, 252 pounds) is a flexible, explosive pass-rusher with great finishing burst to the quarterback.Chase Claypool, WRProjected: Round 2, Pick No. 65 (Bengals)Claypool has an incredible combination of physicality and athleticism. Teams asked him about possibly playing tight end at the next level before the combine. He proceeded to run a blazing 4.42 40-yard dash and record a 40.5-inch vertical jump. Claypool has room to improve as a route runner, but has the tools to be elite player above the rim. Iyer: The Bengals moved on from Notre Dame first-rounder Tyler Eifert at tight end and need a hybrid big-bodied wideout to help Burrow and complement A.J. Green and Tyler Boyd. Claypool (6-4, 238 pounds) matches his size with great speed and downfield burst. He is not the most technically sound route runner, but he often wins with physical domination.Troy Pride Jr., CBProjected: Round 3, Pick No. 82 (Cowboys)Pride won South Carolina high school sprinting championships in four events in 2016, and his speed is the first thing that stands out on the game film. He showed off that trait at the Combine when he ran a 4.40 40. Pride doesn’t have great size (5-11, 193 pounds), but his ability to run could help him develop into a contributor. Iyer: The Cowboys need to replenish speed and athleticism at corner after losing Byron Jones in free agency. Pride (5-11, 193 pounds) just needs to become more refined and aggressive with his coverage skills to get the most out of those agility traits.Khalid Kareem, EDGEProjected: Round 3, Pick 93 (Titans)Kareem doesn’t have the athleticism of Okwara, but he also doesn’t have the upside. With that said, Kareem was still probably the better football player in college. He’s a big, strong 4-3 defensive end who can contribute in the NFL.Iyer: The Titans need some pass-rush consideration to help Harold Landry more with only Vic Beasley signed in the wake of releasing Cameron Wake. Kareem (6-4, 268 pounds) is a versatile, powerful option.Alohi Gilman, SProjected: Round 6, Pick No. 204 (Patriots)