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News From Around The World: October 18

10/18/12
  1. Written by: DHawes22  / avg. rating: 5.0

    October 18



    Trail Blazers TV: Trail Blazers 97, Nuggets 80

    Trail Blazers TV: Meyers Leonard Alley-Oop

    Trail Blazers: Progress Shown In Win
    "No one seems too concerned about the offense. In Stotts' system, like it is in a lot of systems, you get the defense right and the offense quickly follows. You've heard it many times before- defense leads to offense. So, after watching the Blazers allow Phoenix and Sacramento both to shoot over 50 percent from the field in those two losses, holding Denver to 38-percent shooting was the key stat in the game. Add the 22 Denver turnovers to the mix (along with the 26 points scored off of those turnovers) and you've got a winning combination."

    Trail Blazers: JJ's Hidden Talent
    "If you want it, baby you got it. Just bust a move!"

    Trail Blazers: 10.16.12 Trail Blazers Courtside Podcast
    "Listen to the latest edition of Trail Blazers Courtside, your weekly internet, television and radio show devoted to all things Trail Blazers and NBA. Mike Barrett, Mike Rice, and Brian Wheeler are your hosts. Guests this week include Joel Freeland and Scott Lynn."

    Oregon Live: Portland 97, Denver 80: Coby Karl steals show as Blazers beat his father's team
    “It was kind of fun seeing your son play and be a big part of it,” George Karl said. “Coby came off the bench and got their team playing at a energy level, everyone kind of joined the party.”

    Oregon Live: NBA's new hurry-to-tipoff policy has Nolan Smith pondering changes to elaborate handshakes
    “I have to be quicker, but I think fans like seeing that kind of stuff,” Smith said. “They like seeing us interacting as players. It’s all part of the show. We’re going to get to the game, the game’s going to happen.”

    Oregon Live: Blazers Insider: Stotts, Blazers might make losing fun
    "I told the team that the fans appreciate teams that play hard and play with effort, energy and enthusiasm," Stotts said. "If you make mistakes, but you are doing it by playing hard, these fans, they appreciate that, because they understand basketball. And they appreciate guys who are trying to play the right way: team ball, moving the ball, doing the right things."

    Oregon Live: NBA High-5: Timberwolves experiencing Blazers-like 'lack of luck' with injuries
    "When you hear about it, you feel like that," Taylor said. "I think all of our fans anticipated this season with great enthusiasm. We knew we were going to have to wait for Ricky, and we have two guys to wait for, for a month probably. But I'm going to be positive about it and say we've got some young guys and let's see them step up."

    Columbian: Matthews, Aldridge lead Blazers over Nuggets
    “It was just fun to get out there,” Karl said. “All these guys who have been watching and not getting an opportunity, it’s a unique situation when you get an opportunity to play like that.”

    Columbian: Friendship between coaches leads to Coby Karl's opportunity
    " 'What's funny,' " Karl recently told Stotts. " 'There are two guys who I have loved very much in my life and I don't think they've had a fair opportunity, a real good opportunity to make an NBA team.' It was Terry Stotts when I coached him and also Coby now."

    Portland Tribune: A night to remember for fans, Stotts and even the media
    “I came off the court and Coach Stotts was mad at me because I ran the play wrong,” Leonard said. After the second dunk, “He said, ‘I didn’t get to see that one.’ I said, ‘Don’t worry, you’ll see my first one on TV tonight.’ ”

    CSNNW: Damian Lillard is a game time decision vs Warriors
    “I feel pretty good,” Lillard said. “I can do everything on the court like before. It's all up to coach if he wants to play me or not. There's not much really I can do at this point.”

    CSNNW: Blazers take care of Nuggets 97-80
    "I think we're all still trying to find our comfort level on the offensive end and tonight everything felt good," Matthews said. "We just have to stay the course and keeping working to improve."

    Rip City Project: Pre-Season Game 4 Recap: Blazers 97, Nuggets 80
    "With 2:49 to play in the opening frame, Smith made way for Karl with Portland trailing 19-14. It took Coby a minute to get acclimated, but when he did, he was able to do all the things Nolan couldn’t. Two plays at the end of the first quarter went a long way to establish what kind of night was waiting for Coby Karl. With 55 seconds to play, Karl hit a three while getting absolutely plowed over by the always over anxious JaVale McGee. Coby converted the free throw for a solid four-point play (something we might think about calling the Coby Karl this season and not the Jamal Crawford as some of us might have called four-point plays last season) and cut Denver’s lead to one. Two possessions later, Coby Karl turned a Will Barton steal into a Meyers Leonard dunk, one Terry Stotts will be able to see on TV tonight and that Blazer fans will get to see in highlight reels probably for most of the season."

    Blazersedge: Media Row Report (Preseason): Blazers 97, Nuggets 80
    "We've seen him catch crazy alley-oops in practice and do those kinds of plays all the time," Aldridge told Blazersedge. "I think his celebration was more surprising than the actual dunk. It was like the Hulk Hogan, Karate Kid flex. I don't know what that is. That was the first time for that one. I don't want to see that ever again," Aldridge continued, laughing at the mental image and repeating himself for emphasis. "Ever again."

    Blazersedge: Portland Trail Blazers Down the Denver Nuggets as Bench Plays Stotts Ball
    "Terry Stotts' schemes feel right for this team on both ends of the floor. Motion and permission to shoot suit mindset and skills on offense. Daring the other team to match long shots, jumping screens, and shuttling penetration to the side where the dribbler can be trapped...these are great defensive principles for mobile units. The catch is, these things only work if all five guys on the floor commit. Even one player not doing his job stalls the offense or leaves holes in the defense. The Blazers do not have the individual chops on either end to make up for that."

    Sports Illustrated: 2012-13 NBA Preview: Northwest Division
    "The rebuilding has begun for the Blazers, who are now under the leadership of former Clippers general manager Neil Olshey but won't be enjoying the fast track that he orchestrated at his previous job. Olshey tried, to be sure, making a max offer to restricted free agent center Roy Hibbert, but Indiana matched. So Olshey focused on the draft, taking point guard Damian Lillard at No. 6 and center Meyers Leonard at No. 11. They both have serious potential, but will take some time to develop while playing major roles right away. Locking up his own restricted free agent, small forward Nic Batum, was an important move (yes, even at four years and $45 million) to keep some of the LaMarcus Aldridge-led core in place. New coach Terry Stotts, who had a 115-168 record as head coach in Atlanta and Milwaukee but carries a solid reputation after serving as Rick Carlisle's assistant in Dallas, will be doing the developing on a day-to-day basis."

    Ball Don't Lie: Jon Bon Jovi attends Wizards/Raptors game, makes sizable impression
    "The funniest bits here, really, are 1) that Jan Vesely, a 22-year-old native of Czech Republic, conforms to the stereotype that Eastern Europeans love music that was popular 20 years ago and 2) Raptors Amir Johnson and Jose Calderon took a photo with Bon Jovi (available at the top of this post) that apparently got set to every Instagram filter at once. Clearly, these are players who just want to live while they're alive."

    Ball Don't Lie: Ball Don’t Lie’s 2012-13 NBA Season Previews: The Chicago Bulls
    "This is why all the advanced statistical metrics go out the window with these Bulls. By all typical standards of measuring production, stepping backwards from Rose to Kirk Hinrich, or C.J. Watson to Nate Robinson (even if I think this is an upgrade in some ways), or Ronnie Brewer to Marco Bellineli would set the stage for doom and gloom. But with Thibodeau around, there is always the chance (if not the expectation, because he's so damn good) that the whole will be greater than the sum of its parts."

    Ball Don't Lie: The Los Angeles Lakers will attempt to sign LeBron James as a Kobe Bryant-replacement in 2014, ‘several’ NBA team executives suggest
    "That's taking on the notion that LeBron James, after working for years to tone down the vitriol sent his way following the much-reviled Decision in 2010, would join the NBA's most-loathed team. It's fun to love the Lakers, we certainly do, but they're also the newest team that er'ryone loves to hate because of Bryant's haughty presence, and the way they were able to dupe lesser lights on their way towards fielding Kobe, Gasol, Dwight Howard, and Steve Nash."

    Ball Don't Lie via ESPN Boston: James Worthy, via Twitter, sends some ‘respect’ to Jeff Green after the Celtic earned Worthy comparisons
    "I've got a message for [Scalabrine]: You have to ask the great James Worthy if I'm able to have that nickname of James Worthy, because that's a top 50 [player], one of the greatest players to ever play this game, and for me to be called that, it's an honor, but you have to ask his permission," said Green. "So Tweet it, call him, email, whatever you need to do, because I don't want to be called that without his permission."

    Ball Don't Lie: Ball Don’t Lie’s 2012-13 NBA Season Previews: The Toronto Raptors
    "The depth is not to be admired. The team goes 10-deep only if you appreciate the chuck-first instincts of John Lucas III and Linas Kleiza, although both rank as solid-enough replacement-level players despite their rim-gazing. At this point, Bargnani's rebounding will likely never improve (decades of data tells us that steep rebounding misgivings never really round up as careers move along), but the team has acquired enough helpers to make Andrea's scoring work passable. And Calderon as a trade chip could be a fantastic thing — the Raptors are set to acquire cap space should they hold onto or deal Jose, so they'll receive both high-end work in the passing department for more than half a season before taking either a solid draft pick, fine player making big money, or 25 more games following the trade deadline and eventual cap relief should they decide to keep him."

    Ball Don't Lie: Jeremy Evans is now the majority owner of Ronny Turiaf (VIDEO)
    "I doubt it's going to earn the third-year forward out of Western Kentucky much more playing time this season in a stacked Jazz frontcourt, but after seeing him actually make a play like this in a game — closing out on a midrange shooter, using that super-long wingspan to block the shot, corralling the loose ball, taking it the length of the floor and cramming on top of a shot-blocker, all in one fluid motion — kind of makes you feel like he might be someone worth keeping an eye on going forward in a way that winning the Slam Dunk Contest never did."

    The Basketball Jones: The TBJ 2012-13 NBA season prediction countdown: 21-19
    "Of course, Bogut will need to be on the court to make that impact, and that’s become an increasingly dodgy prospect in recent years. He fractured his ankle in January and it’s still giving him enough trouble that he’s questionable to be ready for the Warriors’ season opener. Speaking of which, that’s a recurring problem for point guard Stephen Curry, who missed 40 games last season with his own ankle injury. If most of the Warriors top players can spend more time on the hardwood instead of the trainer’s table, there’s no question they have the talent to make the playoffs for the first time since 2007."

    The Basketball Jones: What is going on with Drew Gooden’s hair?
    "Other than that, I’m stumped. Good to know I was right on the money about Drew Gooden being one of the weirdest players in the league. Get this man a razor."

    DIME: Who Had The Better Dunk? Meyers Leonard Vs. Jonas Valanciunas
    "Will this be Leonard’s best highlight of the year? It’s possible. It was that nasty. But was it even the best dunk by a rookie last night? Toronto’s Jonas Valanciunas calls that into question. He had his own struggles with turnovers (four of them) while posting a solid 8-point, 8-rebound and 3-block outing. Yet he also had a nasty one-handed spike dunk."

    DIME: The Real Winner From The Kevin Love Injury
    "But no matter what, if Love misses 13 games or 21 or 17, his broken hand opens the door for Utah to finish with the No. 7 or possibly even the No. 6 seed. No one wants to slip in with an eight seed. That means a quick four or five game series against OKC and then the summer. But anything else – even if it means a matchup with the Lakers – at least gives them some hope (Have you seen L.A.’s bench so far? If you’re contemplating bringing back Derek Fisher because you have no other options, well, that tells you everything you need to know.). "

    SLAM: Top 50: Kyrie Irving, no. 17
    "He’s skilled, he’s heady, he’s confident, he’s a leader and he’s a winner. Beyond earning the affection of NBA fans (or at least those with League Pass) in ‘11-12, he added Rookie of the Year honors to a first-year resume that featured an 18.5 ppg/5.4 apg/3.7 rpg line in 51 games. In his first 23 games, 10 times he scored 20 or more points. In a 32-point outburst against his hometown New Jersey Nets, he dropped 21 in the fourth quarter alone. And, considering that dude didn’t blow out the candles for his 20th birthday until the last month of the season, well, watch out."

    SLAM: Top 50: Chris Bosh, no. 18
    "And then there was his Eastern Conference Finals comeback. Returning to the lineup after injury, Bosh sealed a place in the Finals for the Heat by shutting down Kevin Garnett at one end of the floor, and opening up the game at the other—his clutch outside shooting prevented the Cs from being able to double up on James and Wade. It was much the same story against the Thunder, where he made Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins a non-factor, despite being at less than 100 percent healthy for the entire series. The rest, as they say, is GIF history."

    ESPN: Wolves' Kevin Love out 6-8 weeks
    "The two-time All-Star broke his right hand while doing knuckle pushups in a morning workout Wednesday and will miss six to eight weeks. Love met with specialists in New York on Thursday, who informed him that the injury can heal without surgery."

    Sports Illustrated: Give-and-Go: Handicapping the MVP race
    "There are definitely some scenarios in which James doesn’t win, but I think it says plenty about this race that each alternate possibility requires a pretty specific and delicate construction. James is the prohibitive favorite and will undoubtedly be the most deserving of the honor; the only things even hypothetically standing in his way are circumstantial factors (injury, minutes, etc.) and observation bias. It’s within the realm of possibility that James somehow, in some way, loses this thing. But I’m not even sure I would take the field over James. He is too good and his public regard too strong that even a fresher narrative won’t be enough to sweep voters off their feet."

    Sports Illustrated: Five Western Conference X-factors
    "The Denver Nuggets have exceeded general expectations since it became clear that Carmelo Anthony was going to hijack his way out of town during the 2010-11 season. Denver didn’t skip a beat after trading their All-Star forward to the New York Knicks, riding a deep but star-less team to back-to-back postseason appearances. In 2012, the Nuggets gave the Los Angeles Lakers a real scare, pushing their first-round playoff series to seven games before bowing out. The run-and-shoot Nuggets were No. 2 in pace and No. 3 in offensive efficiency last season, but their No. 19 defense just wasn’t good enough, not when the top of the Western Conference is populated by the likes of Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant and Manu Ginobili. Enter Nuggets GM Masai Ujiri, who smartly worked his way into the four-team blockbuster trade that sent Dwight Howard from the Orlando Magic to the Los Angeles Lakers. Ujiri not only upgraded from a solid defender, Arron Afflalo, to a star two-way wing, Andre Iguodala, he unloaded Al Harrington and what remained of his excessive five-year, $33 million deal signed in 2010."

    Sports Illustrated: Which extension-eligible players deserve a commitment before the deadline?
    "It’s almost impossible to predict how Evans might be valued on the open market, if only because it’s impossible to predict how he’ll play. We’ve seen vastly different shades of Evans’ game since he debuted with a much-ballyhooed 20-5-5 rookie season, all with no clear pattern for success. He’s had issues running the point and clearly limits his team’s capacity for efficient offense when controlling the ball. He’s had good days playing on the wing and utterly disinterested ones, with seemingly no trigger for either result. One hopes that a team may someday unlock Evans’ potential, and that team may very well be the Kings. But with no clear path in taking Evans from where he is now to where he needs to go, Sacramento would be wise to let his contract run its course."

    Trail Blazers: Weekend Plan: Specially Designed For Families And The Busy Nine-To-Fiver
    "Built for the family-oriented fan with a busy work-week, the 12-game Weekend Pack maximizes the thrill-factor while keeping the competitions to Friday, Saturday and Sunday. A smattering of Western Conference rivals and Eastern Conference visitors during one-offs and key home stands, you can get your hands on this schedule-friendly pack for as low as $11/game and $52/game in the lower bowl."

    Trail Blazers: The Rivals Plan: Two LAs, Oklahoma City And The Return Of Roy
    "The smallest of the four big ticket plans, the eight game Rivals Pack packs a big punch. You’ll be in the building and eating a corndog while others are wondering how to get their hands on a way to see the return of Brandon Roy and the sure to sell out L.A. Lakers and Oklahoma City Thunder."

    Trail Blazers: Why The Value Plan Makes 'Cents' For You
    "The Value Pack starts at just $5 a game. That’s 12 games for as low as $60! Talk about some serious bang for your buck. But that’s not even the best part about this ticket plan. Four of the 12 games take place in the month of January. And there is absolutely no better place to be during an Oregon winter’s night than inside the raucous Rose Garden. Not to mention this pack gets you into the arena to see some of the league’s biggest names and brightest young stars such as Dwight Howard, Dirk Nowitzki, Kyrie Irving, John Wall, and Rudy Gay."

    Trail Blazers: Big Games Plan: 12 Of The Biggest Games
    "This game has it all. Season opener, at home, against the loathe-inducing Lakers, in Steve Nash's first game in purple and gold and it's on Halloween night! Any game against the Lakers at the Rose Garden is going to be a lively one, but the confluence of circumstances in this particular game sets the stage for one of the all-time season openers in Trail Blazers history."

           



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