Canadian coffee and doughnut franchise chain Tim Hortons has announced that it will roll out its stores throughout the UK this year.The chain has unveiled that its first store opening will be on Glasgow’s Argyle Street in May.The company said that Great Britain was a key strategic market for the business and was the first European country to open its doors to the brand.“Bringing Tim Hortons to Great Britain and Glasgow, is something we’re really excited about,” said Elias Diaz Sese, president for Tim Hortons. “Great Britain is a nation of coffee lovers, so we’re confident Tim Hortons will continue to be a leader in the quick-service restaurant sector across the pond.”Tim Hortons will offer an extensive menu to its UK stores including its signature coffee, a variety of baked goods, breakfast and lunch items made from 100% quality ingredients.Franchise operator SK Group, which played a major role in the UK expansion of Domino’s, was involved in the deal to bring Tim Hortons to the UK.Gurprit Dhaliwal, chief operations officer for Tim Hortons UK and Ireland, said the company wanted to replicate Canada’s success in the UK.“It’s hard to explain just how important Tim Hortons is to Canadians – it’s not just a restaurant, it’s a way of life and a place of ‘home’, and we’re positive Great Britain will fall in love with the brand,” Dhaliwal said.Tim Hortons is part of Restaurant Brands International Inc, one of the world’s largest quick-service restaurant companies with more than $27 billion (£21.7bn) in system sales and over 23,000 restaurants in more than 100 countries.
The pair only played 35 NBA games together in the 2014-15 season. But Portland forward Ed Davis fielded plenty of memories playing with Bryant.Davis admired that Bryant shot left-handed last January in New Orleans after tearing the rotator cuff in his right shoulder, which required season-ending surgery.“I thought it was just Kobe being Kobe and thinking, ‘I’ll try this with my left,’” Davis said. “I thought it was something minor. I felt bad.”Davis loved that Bryant chewed out teammates during one practice with expletives and compared their softness to toilet paper. “He was totally against soft guys and guys who don’t have the same mindset with him. But that wasn’t really a problem with me,” Davis said. “I saw some guys tuck their tail and some guys went back at them.”Lastly, Davis left the Lakers seeing first-hand all the stories about Bryant’s dedication to his craft.“He takes his game seriously on a whole other level. I played with a lot of All-Stars and he’s by far the most about basketball,” Davis said. “That’s all that goes through his mind.”Injury updateThe soreness in Larry Nance Jr.’s right knee initially did not keep him off the court, as he camouflaged the aches with hustle and athleticism. But the pain in Nance Jr.’s knee has remained serious enough to sideline him for the past four contests, including Saturday in Portland. “He’s getting better. If it was up to him, he would probably try to play, but he’s not,” Scott said. “It’s not like we’re fighting for playoff position, so there’s no need to rush the young man back.”After completing sprints drills on Saturday, Nance Jr. reported “feeling a lot less pain.” He plans to practice on Monday with hopes to play in Tuesday’s game against Dallas at Staples Center.“Obviously I hate sitting out and not being able to help the team,” Nance Jr. said. “But at the same time, I’m trying to get back.”Endless criticThere might mark one thing besides losing that makes Bryant upset. That subject is AAU basketball, which Bryant acknowledged he has become “extremely critical” of over the years.“I hate it. It doesn’t teach our players how to play the right way and how to think the game and how to play in combinations of threes,” Bryant said. “Everything is a reward system. I think coaches who are teaching the game are getting rewarded in one fashion or another. It’s just a showcase. I think it’s absolutely horrible for the game.”Even though Bryant grew up in that generation, he argued he steered away from that because of his upbringing in Italy. “Everything there was still fundamentally sound, so I learned all the basics,” Bryant said. “I think we’re doing a tremendous disservice to our young basketball players right now. That’s something that needs to be fixed and definitely one of the things I will focus on.”Favorite momentBryant has always considered his fifth NBA championship as the best because it came against the hated Boston Celtics. But Bryant enjoyed the Lakers’ 2008-09 team that won against Orlando the most. That marked Bryant winning his first NBA title without Shaquille O’Neal. Bryant also enjoyed his teammates, including Pau Gasol, Derek Fisher, Trevor Ariza, Lamar Odom and Luke Walton.“2008-09 was the most fun I’ve ever had playing on the team,” Bryant said. “All of us hung out all day together, the entire team. I never played with a team that was so close. That was a fun season.” After matching up against Drexler during the Showtime Era, Lakers coach Byron Scott found Bryant’s footwork “pretty similar to Drexler, partly because of their size. Bryant is 6-6, while Drexler is 6-7.”“Both of those guys had tremendous footwork and both were able to do it in the perimeter and in the post,” Scott said. “That’s Kobe. He watches almost every great player.”Bryant has also modeled his footwork after Jordan, Olajuwon and former Lakers forward James Worthy. But Drexler’s approach prompted Bryant to perfect his versatility.“I remember watching as a kid and thinking I got to be able to use both (feet), depending on what the defense is doing,” Bryant said. “(Drexler) also has extremely quick hands and understood passing lanes very well. He obviously had an all-around floor game besides the dunking.” Fond memories PORTLAND >> First came the pump fakes. Then came the sharp cuts and jabs to throw his defender off-balance. Those moves have represented Kobe Bryant’s signature traits through 20 NBA seasons. He has used them to navigate double-teams, fight Father Time and score at a prolific rate. And those skills partly stemmed from Bryant studying former Portland Trail Blazers guard Clyde Drexler, whom Bryant praised for his “unorthodox footwork.”“I learned so much from Clyde,” said Bryant, who played his final game in Portland on Saturday at Moda Center. “You look at guys who are right-handed, they normally used their left when they pivoted. Then you’re always jabbing and attacking with your right. He was the opposite. He pivoted with his right foot. So his game was a little unorthodox and harder to defend.”So much that Bryant considered Drexler one of the five toughest opponents he ever faced, a list that also included Michael Jordan, Hakeem Olajuwon, LeBron James and Kevin Durant. Though Bryant only matched up with Drexler during his final two NBA seasons in Houston (1996-98), Drexler’s 15-year NBA career entailed scoring a career 22,195 points, landing 10 All-Star appearances and having his No. 22 jersey retired both with Portland and Houston. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error