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 Заголовок сообщения: TSNs Jack Armstrong offers his thoughts on the Spurs being b
Новое сообщениеДобавлено: 10 июн 2019, 08:51 
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TSNs Jack Armstrong offers his thoughts on the Spurs being back in the mix, the bench strength of the Raptors, the Pacers and Heat not being ready for prime time, the compete level of Kemba Walker and the Warriors coaching situation. 1. SAN ANTONIO SPURS: Have won 15 straight games and suddenly here they are again in the mix regarding the discussion of what teams can be in the Finals in June. Dont beat you ever with flash but man, oh man lots of substance when you talk about this team. Wednesday night against Denver, they had five players in double figures and had 30 assists on 43 field goals. Thats quite impressive. The commitment to the team and playing the game together is a principle that has served them well over the years and will make them a tough out in the playoffs. The sum is more important than the parts. 2. RAPTORS BENCH: Its pretty evident that in spite of the Raps being 6-5 in the absence of Patrick Patterson, they miss his presence big-time in a variety of ways. Hes a wonderful perimeter defender on screen and roll sequences, gets after it on the glass, defends in the post and can give you both scoring inside/out as well as intelligent team play on offence. He and Greivis Vasquez are the two major contributors off the bench and when you look at the Boston game Wednesday night with less than 10 points coming off the bench, its an area of concern to say the least as you prepare for the playoffs. Pattersons absence has clearly affected the defence as well with teams putting the Raptors in screen and roll scenarios and the nightly battles on the boards without one of your sturdier post guys. John Salmons has struggled of late and is a solid veteran player. When hes going good, this team has another gear. Getting Patterson back and healthy and an on-track Salmons will go a long way towards getting this team ready for the playoffs. Digging themselves early holes that they have to battle back from are an issue that has to be corrected along with tightening the screws again with the defence. They do that and Im confident that they can compete quite well in a first round series. 3. PACERS VS. HEAT: Watched the game Wednesday night and I must say I was underwhelmed with the quality of play. Yes, it had great playoff intensity but it appeared to me that both of these teams have needed a game like this for a while to get that next gear back in their playing style. Both looked like they need to work out some kinks in the final weeks with offensive flow/execution to be ready to roll in mid/late April. A long season combined with injuries, etc. have a way of messing up your chemistry and neither looked as fluid as when theyre at their best. The Raptors see both of them next week with the Houston Rockets sandwiched in between (what a week!) which will be a good test of their playoff readiness as the Heat have been able to knock off the Raptors this season three times while the Pacers are 2-1 and the Rockets won their game in Houston vs the Raps. The good teams start to take that next step here in the final 10 games to get everything humming and in sync. Always fun to watch as teams gear up for the second season. 4. KEMBA WALKER (Bobcats): Al Jefferson (35 and 15) was awesome in the overtime win vs. the Nets Wednesday night. Coach Steve Clifford has done a terrific job with that team. Its about time the folks in Charlotte get behind their team and support them for a change; this is a team you can root for. Love Kemba - what a gamer, scoring 20 points and five rebounds along with 12 assists. There are certain guys that you just throw out the stats some night because they just play so hard and have amazing pride and competitive spirit and do whatever it takes to win. From his days at UConn to now, he personifies what it means to give it his all. Hes been in a tough situation there with a poor roster, shaky coaching and questionable management decisions and Im happy for him that some of the proper decisions have been made around him and things are coming together. This team has become fun to watch and Walker is the heart and soul of that. 5. BRIAN SCALABRINE (Warriors): Assistant coach gets demoted to the D-League by head coach Mark Jackson. This is right out of the book of Jason Kidd/Lawrence Frank differences that took place early in the season. Jackson was adamantly supportive of Kidds move in the fall with Frank and now he does the same thing. Ive been both an sssistant coach and a head coach and I always felt that loyalty to the boss was #1 and if you disagree, you do it behind closed doors and it never gets picked up by the players, media, etc. At the same time, its vital that the assistant coaches cant be Yes Men that have to supress their opinion as opposed to express their opinion. Healthy dialogue is important yet at the end of the day, the head coach makes the call and we all march together in unison. (Hes also got to be open to suggestions and not have all the answers.) Jason Kidd got past this controversy and has done a good job with the Nets and it will be significant for Jackson to get past this as well by the performance of the team. Expectations are high in the Bay Area and results will be needed. Never an easy situation for any coach to be in and I can relate to the feeling of both. Jackson has a healthy ego and high opinion of his coaching acumen which is good to a degree, yet its time to get this team to the next level and the playoffs will be a major stage for him and his team to show that they can do it. Hes got major potential to be an outstanding coach in this league for a long time and this is another of the many tests young coaches go through in their development. Youre paid to make the tough calls and many times you have to be ruthless in this results-oriented business because at the end of the day, it all falls back on you and your record. Jackson is nobodys fool and is as competitive as they come. Its his show - plain and simple. Never easy or fair. In one word, you have to produce. Kendall Fuller Jersey . -- Among the 31 players at the Montreal Canadiens rookie camp, none feels closer to cracking the NHL roster than right winger Aaron Palushaj. Cameron Erving Jersey . Diego Costa headed in Gabis corner seven minutes from time to secure victory ahead of the return match in Madrid on March 11. "We know that at Madrid it will be another game, which will also be important and very difficult," Milan coach Clarence Seedorf said. http://www.officialkansascitychiefsfoot ... y-womens.C. -- The RBC Cups semifinal participants were decided by a pair of overtime games. Demarcus Robinson Jersey .Under the agreement announced Monday, the Cuban defector is guaranteed $68.5 million over six seasons.Tomas gets a $14 million signing bonus that is payable within 30 days of the deals approval by Major League Baseball, and then salaries of $2 million next year, $4 million in 2016, $6 million in 2017 and $10 million in 2018. Jordan Lucas Jersey .Y. - Geno Smith shouted a couple of mighty expensive expletives.PITTSBURGH -- The San Diego Padres are nowhere near a pennant race. Not by a long shot. Too bad. They have apparently gotten the hang of playoff baseball. Logan Forsythe and Rene Rivera delivered consecutive RBI singles in the ninth inning off Pittsburgh closer Mark Melancon and the Padres rallied for a 3-2 victory on Wednesday night for their third straight win. "What a game," San Diego manager Bud Black said. "Pitch to pitch, every pitch counted. Just a great, great game." Forsythes single to right scored pinch-runner Andrew Cashner to tie the game and Riveras blooper brought home Chris Denorfia as the Padres dealt Pittsburghs NL Central title hopes another blow as the Pirates fell two games behind first-place St. Louis, which beat Colorado 4-3. Dale Thayer (3-5) picked up the win in relief. Huston Street pitched a perfect ninth for his 33rd save as San Diego improved to 31-10 at PNC Park since it opened in 2001. "There is no rhythm or reason to it," Black said. "If we knew why, we would try to bottle it and take it with us wherever we go. I wish I could try to explain it." The Pirates would certainly like one. Melancon (2-2), who inherited the closers role when All-Star Jason Grilli went out with a forearm injury in July, blew his third save of the season. "Just got to tip your hat, they put the ball in play and found some holes," Melancon said. "They did a good job. Sometimes it happens that way." Andrew McCutchen hit a two-run homer in the seventh to give the Pirates the lead but Pittsburgh fell to 74-3 when leading after eight when Melancon faltered. Melancon has been nearly automatic since taking over for Grilli before running into trouble in the ninth. Jedd Gyorko led off with a single before Melancon settled down to retire the next two batters. Denorfia singled to put runners on the corners and Forsythe and Rivera followed with well-placed, if not exactly well-struck, hits to right field as San Diego improved to 11-4 in its last 15 games. "It was something special," Rivera said. "We battled all game and we came through." The rally spoiled McCutchens latest heroics. Pittsburgh was handcuffed by San Diego starter Tyson Ross for 6 1-3 innings when Neil Walker reached on a wild pittch with one out in the seventh.dddddddddddd McCutchen followed by turning on a 3-0 fastball, sending it into the seats in right-centre for his 20th homer of the season. The Pirates lit up Ross for five runs in 6 1-3 innings in San Diego a month ago but came in having scored just two runs in the first two games of the series, losses that dropped Pittsburgh behind the Cardinals as they pursue their first division title in 21 years. Justin Morneau singled leading off the second before being erased on a double play. Ross spent the next 90 minutes toying with the Pirates. Pittsburgh only managed to get three balls to the outfield through six innings. Ross retired Starling Marte to start the seventh and Walker swung and missed at strike three. The ball skittered away from Rivera and rolled to the backstop, allowing Walker to reach. Ross threw wide on three straight pitches to McCutchen, and the National League MVP candidate mashed a fastball over the heart of the plate well over the wall. It was the only mistake on an otherwise brilliant night by Ross, who allowed two runs on three hits with seven strikeouts. "Tyson pitched a great game and he certainly didnt deserve to lose," Black said. "He was more efficient in the strike zone, he was aggressive in the strike zone, he was throwing more strikes and he got in better counts. When you do those things and you have good stuff then you have games like this." Tyson got a good look as McCutchen trotted around the bases then came out for a curtain call as the suddenly energized crowd of over 27,000 roared. He managed to get through the seventh without further damage, ending a duel with Pittsburghs Charlie Morton. Mixing his sinker with an improved curveball in his comeback from Tommy John surgery last year, Morton tied a career-high with nine strikeouts, allowing only one run and two hits. It wasnt quite enough as Pittsburghs playoff push hit another roadblock. NOTES: Pittsburgh sat C Russell Martin on Wednesday and will do so again on Thursday. Manager Clint Hurdle said he wants Martin to be well rested when the Pirates open a pivotal three-game series with Cincinnati on Friday. ... The series wraps up Thursday. Gerrit Cole (8-7, 3.33 ERA) starts for the Pirates against Ian Kennedy (6-9, 4.85). 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