Kawhi Leonard cleared to play in Game 1 versus Warriors

Mens Lamarr Houston Jersey It had been reported that Kawhi Leonard was likely to play in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals on Sunday, and a definitive answer came Saturday afternoon from Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.

Mens Morgan Cox Jersey Leonard was cleared to play by the Spurs’ medical staff Saturday and will be in the starting lineup in Game 1, according to the San Antonio Express News.

The Spurs need Leonard for this series, as the Warriors have one of the best offensive teams in the NBA in recent memory.

But even though Popovich can scheme for any opposing team, he has a simple strategy for stopping Golden State starting Sunday.

Kerr, who hasn’t coached since the opening round of the playoffs, returned to practice Saturday and spoke with assistant coach Mike Brown afterward. In an effort to ramp up his activity in hopes of a return, Kerr also attended coaches meetings the past few days. For the time being, he still remains out indefinitely after recently undergoing a spinal cord leak procedure on his back.

Kerr had previously missed the first 43 games of the 2015-16 season due complications from a pair of back surgeries in the summer of 2015. The team had been optimistic he could return at some point during the playoffs, though the 51-year-old coach admitted he won’t be back until he feels like he can stay for good.

Despite Kerr’s absence, the team is getting along just fine without him as Brown handles the coaching duties. Golden State is 8-0 in the playoffs, the longest winning streak in a single postseason in franchise history, after completing consecutive sweeps of the Trail Blazers and Jazz in the first two rounds.

Astros rally to beat Yankees despite ongoing pitching problems

Yulieski Gurriel bailed out Will Harris. The former Cuban National Team member homered and tallied a two-run double that lifted the Astros a 7-6 win over the Yankees. Had it not been for Harris giving up a grand slam to Didi Gregorius in the top of the sixth inning, the Astros would not have needed the dramatics.

In 2003, Panthers rookie defensive tackle Kindal Moorehead woke up for the first day of training camp with what he thought was a mosquito bite on his arm. After four days of swelling and pain, Moorehead was sent back to Charlotte from the team’s camp in Spartanburg, S.C., to get it checked out.

Doctors believed Moorehead was bitten by a spider. He returned to the team after four days in the hospital, where he was given antibiotics and kept on intravenous fluids.

I was just looking at it like a regular bug bite, Moorehead told the Associated Press. But then my arm kept swelling up. When I went to the hospital and they said they would have to keep me for a few days, then I started to get worried about it. Things like that happen that you have no control over.
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Limited Womens Eli Apple Jersey Chicago literally has more outside linebackers than it knows what to do with, which leads some to believe Lamarr Houston, a former 4-3 defensive end, might not stick on the roster. With Pernell McPhee, Leonard Floyd, Willie Young, Sam Acho and Dan Skuta, the Bears may have the most talented collective group of 3-4 edge rushers in the league.

Big things are expected out of McPhee and Floyd, specifically. New outside linebackers coach Brandon Staley already has praised McPhee, and Fangio has set the bar high for a healthy Floyd in 2017.

Heat display banners of Gordon Hayward in Miami jersey at American Airlines Arena

The Heat get the first shot at impressing All-Star forward Gordon Hayward in free agency in what appears to be a three-team race among Miami, Utah and Boston.

Miami is putting the full-court press on Hayward, going as far as photoshopping him in a Heat jersey in decorative banners outside American Airlines Arena.

Saturday marked not only the official start of free agency, but also the beginning of the NBA Summer League in Orlando. The Heat are prioritizing the former, as assistant coaches Chris Quinn and Juwan Howard are in Miami on “official team business,” according to the Miami Herald — which is thinly veiled code for the team’s meeting with Hayward.

At first glance, sinking out of the top 10 seems harsh for a GM who had the team in the Super Bowl the previous year. But the fiasco of letting Josh Norman go and their inability to adequately replace him weighed heavily in the Panthers’ slide. This draft, led by Christian McCaffrey, and free-agency period, could reverse that fast, but the NFC South is much tougher now than it was in the Super Bowl year.

The poster boy for circumstances out of a team’s control affecting a team and its big decision-maker. Teddy Bridgewater’s blown-up knee created a domino effect of trading a first-round pick for Sam Bradford, replacing their offensive coordinator and much of the staff, making a hard choice about (not) extending Bridgewater and cutting ties with Adrian Peterson likely earlier than planned. Spielman is up for it, but this will be another challenging year.browns_032

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Blue Jays extend new fad by naming Jose Bautista new leadoff hitter

The prototypical leadoff hitter is becoming extinct in Major League Baseball.

Akiem Hicks Elite Jersey Managers used to favor speed, on-base percentage and patience at the top of their batting order — traits usually associated with a leadoff hitter. Now, those attributes are starting to be replaced by struggling power hitters.
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The Blue Jays are the latest team to make a questionable move at the leadoff spot. Jose Bautista is batting first in the lineup Wednesday night, and MLB.com reports he is there to stay.

Nobody expected Whaley to be kept, going back to when Pegula bought the team three years ago, yet Pegula let the scouting, evaluating and drafting take place — with varying reports of who was making the final call and who had the most pull — before booting Whaley out. And all of this while Whaley was hindered more by Ryan’s coaching and by injuries far more than any real problem with his performance.

Didn’t matter. And the timing clearly didn’t matter. Whaley was out, extremely late for him to find a place with a new team. With him, Dorsey and McCloughan, teams clearly were of no mind to do their former team-builders and major contributors any favors.

Grigson was freed early enough to get a job … with the Browns, to waves of ridicule, including from his own former players. He is the only entity in this bunch whom the timing has helped.

So there are some positives. Lynch might know what he’s doing after all, and we know Shanahan will do what he can to maximize what talent they do have. But things won’t be pretty in the short term.

Christian McCaffrey’s mission with Panthers is simple: ‘Ball out’

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — After Panthers first-round draft pick Christian McCaffrey received his first ever handoff from Cam Newton at minicamp on Thursday, he took his second after practice during a post-minicamp media session.

Game Mens Gordie Howe Jersey Pham became the first player in Cardinals history, and just the 14th MLB player all time, to hit two home runs and complete two outfield assists in the same game.

Rockies starting pitcher Jeff Hoffman had been dealing since being called up to the big leagues, but he crashed back down to earth Wednesday in a 16-5 loss against the Diamondbacks. Hoffman gave up nine earned runs — all in the fourth inning — while pitching just 3 2/3 innings.

The Diamondbacks scored 10 runs in the fourth inning, which was a franchise-high on the road. Hoffman may spend some time in the minors after this brutal start.

Angels (37-38) at Yankees (39-30), 7:05 p.m. ET — New York broke its seven-game losing streak Wednesday with an 8-4 win against the Angels. The Yankees will try to continue its momentum by sending breakout ace Luis Severino (5-2, 2.99) to the mound to face off against Jesse Chavez (5-7, 4.85 ERA).

That being said, I do think we have some good depth and someone is going to step up and take that job over.

Authentic Youth Milan Lucic Jersey Ramczyk is the frontrunner with Armstead projected to have a four-to-six month recovery period. Selected at No. 32 overall in last April’s draft, Ramczyk started at left tackle during his 2016 junior season at Wisconsin. He was converted to right tackle by New Orleans to become Strief’s understudy and eventual replacement.

Golden State’s playoff run wasn’t bad for NBA, but Cavs-Warriors IV must be better

The Warriors’ scorched-floor tour is in the history books. Kevin Durant shined like the NBA Finals MVP and earned his first championship ring. Pre-production for Cavs-Warriors IV begins now.

The first two statements didn’t hurt the NBA at all. The third needs to be addressed. We could use a better sequel next time. Another one like Cavs-Warriors III will not be good for the league.

Golden State’s 16-1 run through the NBA postseason — which concluded with a 129-120 victory against the Cavaliers in Game 5 — wasn’t bad for the league. The gap between 16-0 and 16-1 is meaningless when you consider Golden State made history in 2015-16 with a 73-9 regular-season record. The Warriors deserve this place in history.
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So, there sat James Wednesday, Forbes’ third-highest paid athlete (He made an estimated $77.2 million in 2016), an international celebrity, three-time NBA champion and four-time league MVP, solemn, with steely resolve, answering questions for the first time since vandals spray-painted the n-word onto his $21-million Los Angeles home.

James was happy his family is physically safe, but was noticeably somber as he tried to make sense of the senseless.

Teddy Bridgewater Kids Jersey He continued: And I think back to Emmett Till’s mom, actually. It’s kind of one of the first things I thought of, and the reason that she had an open casket is because she wanted to show the world what her son went through as far as a hate crime and being black in America. So it’s like it doesn’t — no matter how much money you have, no matter how famous you are, no matter how many people admire you, being black in America is — it’s tough. And we got a long way to go for us as a society and for us as African Americans, until we feel equal in America. But my family is safe, and that’s what’s — that’s what’s important.

Enes Kanter’s father released from police custody in Turkey, report says

Enes Kanter’s father has been released from jail in Turkey after an investigation into alleged ties to government extremist Fethullah Gulen, according to media reports.

This didn’t sit well for Cleveland, which lost 113-91.

“He’s an assassin,” coach Tyronn Lue told ESPN. “We’re reminding him of that. Go out there and shoot. We need him to.”

Golden State is known for its quick offense, so it’s important for the Cavaliers to keep up their tempo if they want to stay on par.

“They do a great job of taking away the 3,” Smith said of Golden State. “That’s why they have been one of the top defensive teams in the league the last three years. And we just got to do a better job of finishing at the rim to make those guys come to us. If we do that and eliminate the turnovers, it will be a different Game 2.”

However, Smith has only scored double digits twice in this year’s playoffs, which means he hasn’t been firing on all cylinders this entire postseason.

“We just kept telling the guys, they’re going to get tired. Stay in front of them. Force them into outside shots, if you can,” Kerr said. “Fatigue will play a role. And I think when you get guys playing 45, 44 minutes, basically attacking one-on-one the whole game, it’s — you hope eventually it’s going to take its toll. I wasn’t sure after awhile, they just were going nuts.

“But I think that we just stayed with it, and our defense finally kicked in.”
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Draymond Green recalls ‘You thought you was Kobe?’ dis toward Paul Pierce

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When the Warriors played the Clippers in February, Draymond Green dropped one of the best disses while talking to Paul Pierce.

Chasing that farewell tour, they don’t love you like that! You can’t get that farewell tour! They don’t love you like that! You thought you was Kobe?
Green, of course, was referring to the fact Pierce announced before the season this would be his last before retirement.

James and Gilbert have history dating to their acrimonious 2010 split. When James returned to Cleveland in 2014, it was Griffin who assembled the pieces around him, culminating in the most successful three-year stretch in franchise history and its first championship in 2016.

James in turn lobbied for Gilbert to extend Griffin’s contract, to no avail.

Mel Blount Jersey OGilbert called Griffin’s departure a mutual decision on Monday. In a Monday statement of his own, Griffin said he stepped down, adding, Dan and I know now that are a team built largely on the concept of fit and we now at a point where the fit is not right for us to continue with one another.

Former NBA guard Chauncey Billups is reported to be a leading candidate to replace Griffin.

ESPN.com and other media reports indicated James was not consulted by Gilbert about the transition. With rumors already swirling around his pending free agency in 2018, whether the King is pleased remains of utmost importance in Cleveland.

NBA Finals 2017: Was Mike Brown hired to stop LeBron James?

Authentic Womens Ka’Deem Carey Jersey Mike Brown is a defensive guru. After spending a few years under Gregg Popovich as an assistant with the Spurs he learned how to coach defense from the ground up.

In his first five seasons as the head coach of the Cavaliers, his team never finished outside the top 15 in the league in defensive rating, and thrice finished in the top seven. The year he left they were 29th in the league.

He knows how to coach defense. He also knows LeBron James, having coached him those five years. San Francisco writer Connor LeTourneau suggests Brown knows how to stop James and he was hired to do just that.

Authentic Womens J.J. Jansen Jersey Why Kerr would replace the offensive-minded Luke Walton with Brown, a defensive guru, when Golden State already had Ron Adams — perhaps the NBA’s top defensive assistant — on staff? But after watching LeBron James engineer the biggest Finals comeback in NBA history at the Warriors’ expense, Kerr was subscribing to the philosophy that a team can never have too much defense.

It was an astute call in hindsight. Ten years after Brown shepherded a James-led Cavaliers team to the 2007 NBA Finals, he is overseeing a strategy to contain the future Hall of Famer while the ailing Kerr is on an indefinite hiatus from the bench.
The Warriors interviewed Brown for the job between games 3 and 4 of the NBA Finals a year ago. Maybe they knew they had to do something else to stop James. In Game 3 of those Finals, James scored 32 points and the Cavs won by 30 over the Warriors.

Not only did the Warriors hire Brown in July of 2016, they went on to sign Kevin Durant the same month. And what Brown did with Durant in Game 1 Thursday completely threw James off his game.

Mike Tomlin getting caught by Antonio Brown might just save Steelers against Patriots

Mike Tomlin didn’t need Antonio Brown’s help to let us know what he really thinks about the Patriots. Now that everyone outside the Steelers’ locker room has heard just how bad he wants to beat thoseholes in the AFC championship game, let’s hope it only resonated louder and clearer with his players.

Pittsburgh fans absolutely should not be worried that Tomlin gave Belichick’s team more bulletin-board material and extra motivation. They instead should love the fact that he’s conveying the hate toward New England above all else.

Free agency, the cap, trades, injuries, suspensions, age and retirements have gutted the roster more than most championship contenders have endured, even in a league where keeping a winning roster together is a supreme challenge.

Filling those spots, though, has been an unending stream of failures, in free agency and the draft. it’s now so talent-poor that theyve had virtually no chance to win week to week all season.

Kelly will pay the price, but success with this roster was all but impossible and it was the same for Tomsula the year before.

Baalkes window to be supported by York, in spite of this and the clash with Harbaugh, couldn’t stay open forever.

How about a case that Brown, Shula and Lombardi were better at coaching pro football?

Chew on this for a second. Belichick has broken his tie with Shula for most Super Bowl appearances with his seventh. A win breaks his tie with Chuck Noll for Super Bowl wins, at four. Lombardi won five NFL titles, beginning in the pre-Super Bowl era; Belichick would then tie him.
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