Sportige The Sports Know-It-All Fri, 30 Jan 2015 14:15:14 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Los Angeles Lakers – Jeremy Lin Never Dreamed He’d be Backing Up Jordan Clarkson Fri, 30 Jan 2015 14:15:14 +0000 More ]]> Jeremy Lin6 e1422620705902 Los Angeles Lakers   Jeremy Lin Never Dreamed Hed be Backing Up Jordan Clarkson

Even teams that tank win from time to time. The Los Angeles Lakers beat the Chicago Bulls 123-118 to get their moment in the sun, with Jeremy Lin doing well off the bench, but his playing time despite the double overtime game never came close to the point guard the franchise is backing, Jordan Clarkson.

This isn’t a competition. Lin isn’t the kind of player to sulk while his team is winning. He’s cheering on players that are inferior to him but get to play more than him. But it has to hurt somewhere that it has once again happened to him, and he’s finding himself coming off the bench and playing less minutes than another point guard who doesn’t deserve his current role. In fact, Lin is benched because he’s the better player of the two.

Not that Clarkson is doing badly. Without Kobe Bryant a huge shadow is lifted off the team. Suddenly everything is quick, fast, almost fun. It’s not too accurate or polished, but this team is better without the version of Bryant they got on most nights. But that’s enough of the Bryant bashing. He’s nothing but a cheerleader from now on, although his comments on Twitter or through other media outlets will still have their consequences.

The Bulls playing awful defense and the Lakers pushing the ball into the paint worked well for them. Jordan Hill scored 26 points to go with 12 rebounds, Wayne Ellington finished with 23, making it 25.5 per game for him in the last two. Carlos Boozer scored 16 points against his former team in only 28 minutes and Clarkson, getting 43 minutes from Byron Scott, finished with 18 points on 6-of-15 from the field, coming in for Lin with 4:03 left in regulation and never leaving again.

Clarkson almost cost the Lakers the game. While he did make some shots, he made plenty of mistakes that allowed the Bulls to complete their comeback and force overtime. He bounced back in the second overtime but the Lakers seem to be quite happy to see him go through the motions in crunch time and suffer from his inexperience because it the long run it’ll get them a better, higher draft pick and maybe somehow also polish a decent point guard for them.

Lin scored 11 points, adding five assists in 27 minutes of basketball. He had good moments, he had a few that he’d like to forget. In the grand scheme of things? His minutes are meaningless and irrelevant to the Lakers, clearly showing they don’t see him as part of anything they’re trying to build. Try being at your workplace with that sitting in the back of your head, knowing you’re possibly the best player on this team which is exactly why you’re being reduced into a bench player, and often taken out of games when things are going too well.

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NFL Playoffs – Seattle Seahawks Treated Like Criminals, New England Patriots Like Cheaters Fri, 30 Jan 2015 13:15:54 +0000 More ]]> Patriots vs Seahawks e1422619686627 NFL Playoffs   Seattle Seahawks Treated Like Criminals, New England Patriots Like Cheaters

Getting tested for HGH before the Super Bowl has made Seattle Seahawks players very angry, claiming they’re being treated like criminals. After the New England Patriots got the cheater treatment for most of the two-week break, it’s fair that both teams have something to complain about.

Just like the Patriots have history with cheating and preferential treatment from referees and the league which made the deflated balls issue (which is still unresolved and is shrouded by mysterious claims of a cover up on both sides, the league’s and the team’s) a lot bigger than it would have been for any other team, the Seahawks and some of the players on this team have a history with performance enhancing drugs and suspensions.

As a rule, the NFL’s HGH random testing program selects six players each out of eight randomly selected teams per week in the offseason. Random testing for HGH isn’t as frequent once training camp begins through the end of postseason. Earl Thomas, who is still suffering from a shoulder injury sustained during the NFC championship game win over the Green Bay Packers, was one of the players tested for HGH by the league.

Thomas was wearing a bandage on his right arm during the final media appearance before the game, but refused to elaborate on his tweet or his anger regarding the NFL choosing him for the testing. Maybe the fact that the Seahawks players have been fined around $300,000 for PED use since Pete Carroll became their head coach would make him feel a little bit less prosecuted, but players never see things objectively.

So we have one team feeling angry for being treated like criminals. We have another team fuming for being targeted by the league and labeled as cheaters without any proof, or at least not satisfactory one. Maybe all that anger will be channeled in the right direction, and we’ll have a special, possibly historic Super Bowl.

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Duke Blue Devils – Rasheed Sulaimon Is the First Player Mike Krzyzewski Kicks Out Fri, 30 Jan 2015 12:45:09 +0000 More ]]> Rasheed Sulaimon e1422618925750 Duke Blue Devils   Rasheed Sulaimon Is the First Player Mike Krzyzewski Kicks Out

For the first time in the long Mike Krzyzewski tenure as the head coach of the Duke basketball program, a player has been kicked off the team, as Rasheed Sulaimon, the Junior guard who has been relegated to a bench role this season, having the “honor” of setting that mark.

It’s rare to see a program with the distinction of Duke throwing a player out in the middle of the season, but according to reporters close to the team and the coaching staff, it’s been an accumulation of unprofessional behavior from the player, something that at some point became to difficult to overlook, as his talent couldn’t save him anymore. At some point, the issues he had to deal with outweighed his contribution on the court.

Rasheed has been unable to consistently live up to the standards required to be a member of our program. It is a privilege to represent Duke University and with that privilege comes the responsibility to conduct oneself in a certain manner. After Rasheed repeatedly struggled to meet the necessary obligations, it became apparent that it was time to dismiss him from the program.

Sulaimon was a start during his first two seasons with the team, but his time on the floor and his efficiency dropped from his freshman to junior years. With the additions of Tyus Jones and Justice Winslow, two freshmen scoring in double figures this season, it was made clear that Sulaimon’s role would suffer from another reduction in size, which means less playing time for a player that had a chance of going to the NFL draft after his freshman season.

He averaged 7.5 points, 2 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game while shooting 40.4% from beyond the arc. While his body language wasn’t always the most positive in the world, he seemed to be buying into his role of coming off the bench. His defense improved, but it turns out his behavior behind the scenes, when off the court, was going in a different direction.

Who fills in for him? Duke don’t have time for slow progress. Their chances of winning the ACC are fading after three losses in the first seven games and a visit to undefeated Virginia looming this weekend. Another freshman, Grayson Allen, averaging 6.1 minutes a game, might be the one to fill for his minutes. Matt Jones, already playing 17 minutes a game, might simply see his role expand. For a team that’s already being criticized for getting preferential treatment by the polls, having to deal with a huge hit to their bench quality is a major problem.

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2015 All-Star Game Rosters & Biggest Snubs Fri, 30 Jan 2015 12:30:30 +0000 More ]]> Jeff Teague Paul Millsap Al Horford e1422617740558 2015 All Star Game Rosters & Biggest Snubs

The 2015 NBA All-Star game rosters are set, with the Atlanta Hawks sending three players to the Eastern team, more than anyone else in the league, with Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls, Kyle Lowry of the Toronto Raptors, Jeff Teague (Hawks) and Klay Thompson of the Golden State Warriors all making their first appearance in the best exhibition game North American sports leagues have to offer.

Jeff Teague (debut), Paul Millsap (2nd appearance) and Al Horford (3rd appearance) come from the team on the longest winning streak this season (17 games), all appearing on the bench. They’re joined by Chris Bosh of the Miami Heat (10th appearance), Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls (debut), Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat (11th) and Kyrie Irving of the Cleveland Cavaliers making his third appearance in the All-Star game. He’s also the MVP of last year’s edition.

Starting for the East will be Kyle Lowry of the Toronto Raptors, John Wall of the Washington Wizards (2nd appearance), LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers (11th appearance), Carmelo Anthony of the New York Knicks (8th appearance) and Pau Gasol of the Chicago Bulls (5th appearance). Wade might be out for a while with a hamstring injury, so there’s a chance he won’t be a part of this game in the end.

Things are a bit deeper in the Western conference. The Oklahoma City Thunder send two players to the bench - Russell Westbrook (4th selection) and Kevin Durant (6th), despite Durant missing almost half the games so far this season if not more, which means that many don’t see him as deserving to be in the game. LaMarcus Aldridge of the Portland Trail Blazers (4th), Tim Duncan of the San Antonio Spurs (15th), Klay Thompson of the Golden State Warriors (debut), James Harden of the Houston Rockets (3rd) and Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers (8th) fill up the ranks.

Starting? Stephen Curry of the Warriors (2nd), Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Pelicans (2nd), Marc Gasol of the Memphis Grizzlies (2nd) and Blake Griffin of the Los Angeles Clippers (5th). What about the fifth player? Kobe Bryant was selected by the fans, but he’s out for the season, which mean either Harden of Thompson will take his place in the starting lineup.

Damian Lillard DeMarcus Cousins e1422617832384 2015 All Star Game Rosters & Biggest Snubs

But what about those who didn’t make it? The East doesn’t really have someone who should feel like he’s been left out. Maybe Kyle Korver of the Hawks (who might still make it), Brandon Knight from the Milwaukee Bucks or Nikola Vucevic of the Orlando Magic can be thrown into some debate, but overall the East have the best team they can assemble in terms of what players have done this season. Derrick Rose hasn’t been good enough or better than the guards selected, and the same goes for Kevin Love.

The debate is a bit more interesting out West. Damian Lillard is having another fantastic season, averaging 21.8 points and 6.2 assists per game. Numbers aren’t everything, but he’s probably been better than Chris Paul so far this season. DeMarcus Cousins with his 23.8 points and 12.3 rebounds per game has also been left out, while Tim Duncan and Kevin Durant, clearly inferior to him this season or not playing enough, get the not to be on the bench.

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Lakers Beat Bulls – Embarrassing Moment for Championship Contenders Fri, 30 Jan 2015 12:15:47 +0000 More ]]> Lakers beat Bulls e1422616521658 Lakers Beat Bulls   Embarrassing Moment for Championship Contenders

There’s losing, and there’s getting beaten by a team that’s trying to lose as much as possible between now and the end of the season. The Chicago Bulls were beaten 123-118 in a double overtime game against the Los Angeles Lakers, as the Derrick Rose approach to basketball didn’t pay off this time.

Rose was coming off a game winning shot against the Golden State Warriors and taking 33 shots (missing 20 of them) to try and help his team. He went with the same approach against the Lakers, who are used to having a player hog the ball and try to do too much on his own. Rose hit only 7-0f-26 from the field (1-of-7 from beyond the arc) to finish with 17 points. He also turned the ball over five times, but it didn’t stop him from putting up more and more shots.

But while Rose has had inefficient shooting nights before, the Bulls’ problems on defense should be a bit more worrying. Giving up 123 points to a team that is on a nine game losing streak and is using Jordan Clarkson as their starting point guard and floor manager for most of the game is something to be concerned about although the constant changes in the lineup and the attempts to overcome the usual string of injuries to key players isn’t helping.

Jimmy Butler had a very good game with 35 points and 7 rebounds, finishing with 16-of-18 from the line, but his rally to the cause late in the game to force overtime just wasn’t enough. He actually wasn’t on the floor for the final minute of overtime as the Bulls were already down by five and in desperate mode. Losses happen, but the inconsistency from the Bulls especially after such an impressive display against the team with the best record in the league is worrying, and not for the first time this season.

As for the Lakers, they avoided a 10th consecutive loss, which would have matching the franchise record, which was “achieved” in the 1948-1949 season, meaning the Lakers are in a bad way, more than they’ve even been before, at least since arriving in Los Angeles. Not that losing bothers them too much. Kobe Bryant is out for the season, so is Steve Nash, first round draft pick Julius Randle and Xavier Henry. From the selection of players in the lineup and the minute distribution, losing seems to be a welcome phenomenon, as long as a slight show of progress is shown from time to time.

Pau Gasol has his return to Los Angeles. He’s a two-time NBA champion with the Lakers, joining them in 2008 via trade from the Grizzlies. No hard feeling from the crowd towards him, and not from him towards the organization, although he did say it’s nice to play for a team without any trade rumors hanging over his head. He’s had to contend with those since the 2011-2012 season on almost a weekly basis, which obviously didn’t help him bring his best. Mike D’Antoni being his head coach (and the two did not get along) was another contributing factor.

Jordan Hill with 26 points and 12 rebounds led the Lakers and Wayne Ellington continues to thrive with more minutes, scoring 23. Clarkson, the player enjoying more than anyone else this new tanking scheme, finished with 18 points, but it’s quite clear the Lakers have a much better point guard simply waiting to be acknowledged. Jeremy Lin played only 27 minutes, scoring 11 points with five assists. Byron Scott probably enjoyed their non 3-point approach, attempting only nine in the whole game.

Derrick Rose is confident and actually played 40 minutes two games in a row for the first time since January 2012. But he’s also 34% from the field with 59 field goal attempts in these two games, turning the ball over 16 times while dishing out just 7 assists in the process. With the Bulls struggling defensively with players coming in and out of the injury list, Derrick Rose needs to be a little bit more responsible with the ball in his hands.

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NFL Playoffs – Marshawn Lynch Making it Worse For Himself Fri, 30 Jan 2015 11:45:24 +0000 More ]]> Marshawn Lynch2 e1422614787437 NFL Playoffs   Marshawn Lynch Making it Worse For Himself

By not answering the questions from reporters, Marshawn Lynch is actually attracting even more attention to himself. The Seattle Seahawks running back wouldn’t be so interesting in the week leading up to the Super Bowl had he actually made less of an effort to make a point about reporters.

Lynch doesn’t like reporters or the media following him around. But he does love earning the kind of money that NFL coverage allows him to make. And he’s not complaining about the exposure his own brand, ‘Beast Mode’, is getting, by him flashing his hat around during his podium appearances. Yet his latest rant was once again trying to expose reporters for their lack of importance. Lynch might be missing the point here.

He’s a lot more interesting trying to avoid press conferences and making this weird five minute appearances in which he keeps watching the timer on his phone or repeating the same line over and over again than if he would once in a while oblige to the mundane and boring questions the NFL media makes him “suffer” through. With all due respect, reporters and fans usually care a lot more about what quarterbacks or big mouth players have to say.

That’s the real issue behind all of this, so it’s either Lynch reading the map wrong or actually wanting to gather attention around him. While avid NFL fans are complaining that the media is focusing too much about the deflated balls scandal or the few words Lynch is saying each time he’s forced to make a media appearance, for big websites and TV channels it’s about driving in traffic and viewers. The more sensationalist, less deep thoughts usually make for a better way to attract the masses.

Arian Foster made some great points, mostly backing Lynch, during his visit to an ESPN panel. Foster isn’t Lynch. He doesn’t mind answering questions, and he’s often a real delight to listen to because he brings his points across very well and doesn’t dumb the conversation down like some other panel members in this specific video. But he knows very well that in the business model of the NFL, ignoring the greedy factor the league is driven by, Lynch has a part to play, which includes showing up for media appearances.

If Lynch really wants peace and quiet, answering dull questions would be a lot more beneficial for him. Maybe he is trying to change the ‘game’ by taking a stand in the name of privacy and shunning reporters, but it’s not working for him. It’s bigger than him, stronger than him. Maybe Seattle Seahawks fans just want everyone to leave their Skittles monster alone, but the league will be a very different place if everyone acted the way Lynch does.

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Novak Djokovic Going for the Australian Open Record Thu, 29 Jan 2015 19:31:42 +0000 More ]]> Novak Djokovic e1422559853389 Novak Djokovic Going for the Australian Open Record

With four Australian Open titles in his trophy room already, Novak Djokovic once again has the chance to set himself apart from Andre Agassi and Roger Federer an become the only player to win this particular tournament five times, or at least in the Open era (since 1968).

In the way? Andy Murray, who is a two-time Grand Slam champion, but never in Melbourne. He is a three-time finalist in Australia, but two of those losses (2011 and 2013) have come against Djokovic. But that is only if Djokovic gets past Stanislas Wawrinka in the semifinal.

Their head to head (with Murray) record obviously puts Djokovic at the advantage point, winning 15 of their 23 matches. He has also won their last four encounters, all in 2014, all of them coming on Hard Courts. Their last Grand Slam final, however, went to Murray, when he finally broke the British curse at Wimbledon with a straight-sets win in 2013. Since then, Murray hasn’t played very well, at least until this tournament.

But in order to get that favorable matchup, Djokovic needs to get past the 2014 champion, Wawrinka. Djokovic is 16-3 in his career against the Swiss star, but Wawrinka beat him in the 2014 Australian Open final which means that whatever happened prior to last year doesn’t really mean a lot. Wawrinka is perfectly equipped to upset the number one player in the world, but it’ll take a massive effort, with Djokovic not losing a single set so far in the 2015 tournament.

As for the all-time record including the pre-Open era, it belongs to Roy Emerson, an actual Australian, winning the tournament six times from 1961 to 1967.

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20 Hot Girls to Make Your Winter a Little Warmer Thu, 29 Jan 2015 15:15:39 +0000 More ]]> It’s January. Well, almost February. In a lot of places right now it’s really really cold. Wet. Snowing. Freezing. Looking at sexy women without a lot of clothes hanging off their bodies is always a good way to get warm, isn’t it?

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10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL Thu, 29 Jan 2015 14:45:53 +0000 More ]]> It seems that the main goal for Marshawn Lynch in the days leading up to the Super Bowl? To not get fined. The NFL are on the opposite side of that curve, with the memes to prove this is getting a little bit ridiculous.

Is this a witch hunt? Yes and now. The NFL has fined Brian Urlacher $100,000 in the past for wearing a hat during Super Bowl media events endorsing a company the NFL hasn’t signed off on, so Lynch won’t be the first to get fined for something like wearing a beast mode hat.

But it does feel as if the NFL has the hots for his money. He shows up to media events and simply says one sentence. Some find it funny, others find it disrespectful. but in any case, with the deflated balls slowly fading away from sight, Lynch’s media “antics” are taking central stage.

So will he or won’t he get fined? Probably only after the Super Bowl. If he wins the game and earns himself a big contract on the next deal he signs? He won’t care so much.

Simpsons Lynch 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL Still gets fined 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL It doesnt matter e1422540397249 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL Dont get fired 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL Husbands be like e1422540408165 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL Fine his A 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL ObamaCare Fine e1422540355687 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL Michael Jackson Lynch e1422540378219 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL Leave him alone 2.0 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL Fine 10 Best Memes of Marshawn Lynch Trying to Not Get Fined by the NFL

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Gulf Nations Trying to Kick Australia From the Asian Football Confederation Because They’re Better Than Them Thu, 29 Jan 2015 14:30:51 +0000 More ]]> Socceroos e1422538440790 Gulf Nations Trying to Kick Australia From the Asian Football Confederation Because Theyre Better Than Them

With Australia on the verge of winning the Asian Cup for the first time (playing in the final against South Korea) it seems there’s a movement within the AFC to kick them out of the confederation, stemming from pure jealousy and disappointment, mostly on the part of the Arab Gulf nations, frustrated that there’s yet another big player on the field that’s better than them.

If Australia make it and beat South Korea in the final, they’ll be the reigning champions of both the nations and club competitions. The final will be held in Sydney. Qualifying twice to the World Cup since joining the Asian qualifiers is seen by those seeking to expel them from the confederation as “Stealing a spot that they deserve” although there are many that believe that it’s ridiculous that Oceania have a separate confederation and should be fully incorporated with Asia.

Speaking to a newspaper in the United Arab Emirates, AFC president Sheikh Salman Bin Ibrahim Al-Khalifa spoke about being aware that there’s momentum building for Australia’s removal from the confederation with the momentum building among the Gulf nations, but that the “Arabs aren’t the only ones” trying to leave Australia out of their own competitions after joining in 2006 from Oceania.

Australia joined the AFC before I was elected as the president. At that time, the AFC general assembly made no resolution about re-assessing Australia’s membership to determine whether it will stay or be evicted. There are indications that prove that such desire exists among the confederations of west Asia to evict Australia. But I also know that the Arabs are not the only ones who are not convinced that Australia’s membership in Asia’s football is feasible.

And why? While some are suggesting that Australia are getting more than they’re giving in this relationship (whatever the hell that means), this is simply a case of sour grapes. Nations that are failing time and time again to reach the World Cup or succeed in the Asian Cup are also fearing the rise of China and India as regional powers, although that might take much longer to be accomplished. If Australia weren’t so successful, this wouldn’t have been brought up.

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