LATEST STORIES Minnesota Timberwolves’ Jimmy Butler, left, eyes the basket as Orlando Magic’s Nikola Vucevic of Montenegro defends in the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota—Jimmy Butler tied a season high with 26 points, Taj Gibson scored a season-high 24, and the Minnesota Timberwolves held off the Orlando Magic 124-118 on Wednesday night.Jeff Teague had 22 points and 11 assists, and Andrew Wiggins added 20 points as all five starters scored in double figures to help the Timberwolves end a two-game slide.ADVERTISEMENT Butler has scored at least 20 points in three of his last four games and seven overall this season.He had 16 points in the first half, and added seven in the first 4:36 of the second half to give Minnesota an 84-71 lead.Wiggins had seven points as Minnesota finished the third quarter on a 14-0 run for a 106-80 lead.ADVERTISEMENT Read Next CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games PLAY LIST 00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Westbrook’s 34 points lead Thunder past Warriors QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion View comments Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 MOST READ Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Kris Aquino ‘pretty chill about becoming irrelevant’ Karl-Anthony Towns had 18 points and 13 rebounds for his 14th double-double, which tied DeMarcus Cousins for the league lead.Aaron Gordon scored 26 points and added nine rebounds for the Magic, who have lost six straight. Terrence Ross scored a season-high 22 points, Evan Fournier had 19 and Nikola Vucevic finished with 11 points and 13 rebounds.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutOrlando was outscored 41-18 in the third quarter to fall behind by 26. However, the Magic started the fourth quarter on a 19-1 run to get within eight.Butler made Minnesota’s first basket of the quarter, a 3-pointer midway through the period, to end the rally. The Magic got within four in the waning seconds before Teague hit two free throws.
The excitement of the NRL and AFL finals began on the weekend, and that same hype will carry on to Coffs Harbour this week where the 2006 National 18 Years and under Championships are set to begin. Welcome to the pre-National 18’s edition of 60 Seconds in Touch! The National 18’s tournament is a fantastic opportunity to showcase some of the best junior Touch players in Australia. It consists of teams from state school systems, NTL permit areas and state bodies.Tournament staff made their way to Coffs Harbour on Sunday, with the constant rain and wind of concern to all. Weather predictions say it will be clearing up towards the end of the week, just in time for the Touch action to start!The Opening Ceremony for the event will take place at 11am on Wednesday. All teams are required to attend, and team captains will be involved in a march past. The ceremony will involve a farewell for the Australian sides heading to South Africa for the 2007 World Cup. Former Australian representative, Dean Russell will address the players and wish them well for the tournament. The Touch community will also be able to wish the players well, with several Boxing Kangaroo flags in the merchandise room for players and spectators to sign or record a message of good luck.South Sydney Rabbitohs NRL player and ex-Australian Touch representative, Joe Williams will be at this year’s tournament, he’ll be around the grounds helping out and checking out the junior talent.Those cheeky guys from the Fishbowl – the tournament control tower, are back again this year to entertain the crowd with their wit and humour. Adam Collins and Tony El Takchi will be announcing game times, warm up times, ‘match of the round’ and basically entertaining the crowd. Kane Weeks will be joining them on Saturday for finals day. Stay tuned to this website for their daily wrap up, ‘From the Fishbowl’.Thank you to the fantastic staff at the Coffs Harbour International Stadium for once again contributing to the success of the tournament. The fields are in immaculate condition as always, thanks to Russell and his ground crew. Thanks also to Frank and his staff will once again have a delicious range of food and drinks available for purchase.The crew from Sporting Images will be at the event this week shooting action shots and also team photos. Photographs will be available for purchase online at www.sportingimages.net following the tournament. Up to date information from the tournament, including results and feature stories will be updated as often as possible. The Sporting Pulse results website will show all game results, draws and touchdown scorers, so stay tuned to www.austouch.com.au for all the latest news.
DONE DEAL: Leicester sign Italian striker Lorenzo after successful trialby Freddie Taylor10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveLeicester City have signed Davide Lorenzo on a short term deal.He was on trial at the club and impressed the coaching staff.Now the 24-year-old has a chance to show what he can do for the rest of the season.Per Italian reports, he had met Leicester’s owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in a restaurant when he was working at a waiter some months ago. Vichai offered him a trial and the rest is history…He has previous stints at Juventus, Cosmos and the New York Red Bulls.”I am happy to have achieved this goal, I have pursued it for so long,” Lorenzo said to TMW.”I know that the contract was a consequence of the actions I have done inside and, above all, outside the field.”I refer to all the things I have experienced in the last years, during which I learned so much from my mistakes, now I just have to continue like this, training hard every day to get more emotions like that.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say
TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say REVEALED: Arsenal chief Kroenke only Prem owner never to spend on their clubby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveStan Kroenke has not spent a penny of his personal fortune on Arsenal, it has been revealed.The Sun says he is the only Prem club owner not to dig into his own pocket to fund the team over the past decade.Arsenal owner Kroenke sits on a massive personal fortune of £7billion but has been unwilling to spend any of that money on the club.Instead the 71-year-old has restricted the Gunners to only using money the club brings in itself – leading to them falling behind their Premier League rivals.Arsenal’s business model means that, unlike the rest of the Prem, their spending was entirely funded from self-generated revenues – through television, sponsorship and marketing income, plus prize money.
Romero reveals Solskjaer has ‘restored happiness’ at Man Utdby Freddie Taylor10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United goalkeeper Sergio Romero says Ole Gunnar Solskjaer restored happiness to the playing group.The Norwegian has gone five from five since taking over as caretaker manager last month.And Romero believes that the players are enjoying their football.”We’ve had a great run,” Romero told the club’s website.”Not just the results, but the way in which we have won the games as well. Scoring five goals in one match was a big boost to confidence and was really something.”What we’re showing now, after a great Christmas, is only right for a club of this stature, [it] proves what we can do. The run we’ve had over Christmas and new year is testament to that.”[The manager] knows what he wants to achieve – both for the club and us as individuals. On the pitch and within the club, he has made it very clear from the outset so we know the expectation of us inside the club and externally.”You can see he has brought to the club a certain happiness and it is going well.” About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say
Pogba willing to stay with Man Utd – for record wagesby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the lovePaul Pogba is demanding Manchester United make him one of the highest paid players in the world if they want him to stay.Tuttosport says the midfielder’s first choice is to leave United, with Real Madrid and Juventus keen.However, Pogba is prepared to stay with United if they accept his terms.The World Cup winner is seeking over €650,000-a-week to stay – or €34m-a-year.New contract talks commenced between the two parties on Tuesday. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
Burnley midfielder Jeff Hendrick: The key to early season formby Paul Vegas13 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveBurnley midfielder Jeff Hendrick admits a lack of Europa League football has worked in their favour this season.The Clarets are seventh in the Premier League table after an impressive start to the campaign. “We’ve progressed but I think last year was a bit different,” the midfielder said.“I know it was frustrating for us as players and maybe the fans, staff and everyone.“At the start of the season, with the games we had, it was difficult, it was tiring.“I was talking to my friend at Wolves when we played them and I said, ‘How are you getting on with the European football?’ and he just said he’s constantly tired.“Without even knowing, the travelling does take it out of you and that’s what happened with us last year.“Even when we were out of that, we tried to pick the performances up, but it didn’t work.“Eventually we sat down, we all got on the same track and the performances started to pick up and we got some points on the board, which we did need at the back end of last year.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
2013-14AtlanticRaptors0.585 12014-15Atlantic-3.6-3.924 The worst division ‘winners’NBA division winners (or leaders for the 2018-19 season) with a win percentage of less than 0.600, since the league expanded in 2004 32005-06Northwest-3.4-3.134 92005-06Atlantic-2.3-2.382 72015-16Atlantic-2.5-2.572 72013-14Atlantic0.422 62004-05Southeast-2.4-2.646 There are also signs that this year’s Southeast might be among the worst overall divisions we’ve seen during the 30-team era. The current combined record of the Hornets, Heat, Washington Wizards, Orlando Magic and Atlanta Hawks is just 119-159. That works out to a 0.428 combined winning percentage — worse than all but eight other divisions since the 2004-05 season. So in terms of the ability of its teams to actually win basketball games, the 2018-19 Southeast ranks among the bottom 10 percent of all divisions since the most recent league expansion. 52004-05Southeast0.417 2005-06NorthwestNuggets0.537 For the most part, divisions in the NBA have become more a formality than anything else. It’s been four years since the league last guaranteed division winners home-court advantage during their first-round playoff series, and it’s been 12 years since division winners were guaranteed a top-three seed regardless of their record.1A division winner was still guaranteed at least a No. 4 seed until the 2016 playoffs. These days, the top team in a division is not guaranteed to make the playoffs at all — the top eight teams from each conference advance to the postseason regardless of division alignment.If we’re being completely honest, it sure seems like the only real use the league has for divisions these days is scheduling.2The NBA schedule works the same way every season: Each NBA team plays each of the 15 teams from the opposite conference twice a year, the four other teams from its own division four times a year, and the 10 teams from the two remaining divisions in its conference either three or four times in a given season, with the determination being made seemingly at random, though it is in actuality largely based on arena availability. The only other benefit appears to be the occasional excuse to make fun of the lonely division winner banners that hang in the rafters of Madison Square Garden.But this season, one of the league’s six divisions really stands out — and not for a good reason. Not a single one of the teams in the Southeast is above .500, with the Charlotte Hornets sitting in first place at 27-28.No division winner has finished below .500 under the NBA’s current alignment, which was established in 2004 when the league expanded to 30 teams and split them into six divisions to accommodate the then-expansion Charlotte Bobcats. Since Charlotte re-entered the league, the worst division winners were the 2005-06 Denver Nuggets, the 2006-07 Miami Heat and the Southeast’s winner from a year ago, the 2017-18 Heat, which each finished with 44 wins and a 0.537 winning percentage.Only 14 division winners (including this year’s Hornets and Houston Rockets, who are leading their divisions) since 2004 have finished with a winning percentage south of 0.600 — otherwise known as the teams that won fewer than 50 games (or the lockout-shortened season equivalent) and still managed to win their division. 12009-10Atlantic0.385 2016-17SoutheastWizards0.598 32015-16Atlantic0.407 Source: Basketball-Reference.com 52004-05AtlanticCeltics0.549 102013-14Central0.0-2.314 12018-19SoutheastHornets0.491 2006-07SoutheastHeat0.537 Top 10 worst collective records among NBA divisions since the league expanded in 2004 82005-06Northwest0.424 92018-19Southeast0.428 The Southeast is even worse when you account for scheduleThe worst NBA divisions by Simple Rating System and point differential since the league expanded in 2004 62017-18Southeast0.420 Source: Basketball-Reference.com Despite the truly historic nature of the Southeast’s horribleness, the division is pretty much guaranteed to get at least one playoff team this season, sparing it the ignominy of being the first NBA division in history to entirely miss the postseason. The dreadful Bulls, Cavaliers and Knicks will surely finish with the three worst records in the conference, which means the worst the Southeast champ can do is finish eighth in the East and earn the right to be smoked by the Bucks or Raptors in the first round of the postseason. (Even with the newly flattened lottery odds, those three awful teams also have a considerably better chance to land the No. 1 pick and the right to select Duke superstar Zion Williamson, while the Hawks, Magic and Wizards will more likely be left picking in the mid-to-late lottery, possibly dooming the Southeast to even more mediocrity in the future.)Meanwhile, only one of the Clippers, Kings and Lakers is likely to be headed to the postseason in the West, despite all three teams being projected to finish with better records than every single team in the Southeast. If the season ends with the 38-win Hornets in the playoffs and, say, the 41-win Lakers staying home, perhaps the NBA will finally decide to move to an open-seeded playoff system — with the best 16 teams making it to the dance regardless of conference alignment.Check out our latest NBA predictions. 82015-16SoutheastHeat0.585 2005-06AtlanticNets0.598 RANKSeasonDIVISIONWIN pct. 62006-07AtlanticRaptors0.573 72018-19SouthwestRockets0.582 22013-14Atlantic-2.7-3.212 102011-12AtlanticCeltics0.591 RANKSeasonDIVISIONPt Diff.SRS 102008-09Pacific0.429 112017-18NorthwestTrail Blazers0.598 22017-18SoutheastHeat0.537 42009-10Atlantic-3.0-3.066 52018-19Southeast-2.6-3.050 42005-06Atlantic0.415 22014-15Atlantic0.395 82008-09Pacific-2.3-2.428 The season isn’t over yet, though, which means there’s still time for the Southeast to get even worse. Washington just traded away Otto Porter and Markieff Morris at the deadline after its star, John Wall, suffered a torn Achilles tendon that will keep him out for at least a year. Miami, likewise, shipped away rotation player Tyler Johnson and received very little on-court help in return. The Hornets did not add Marc Gasol, as had been heavily rumored, while the Hawks are finalizing a buyout with Jeremy Lin, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, and could potentially do the same with Dewayne Dedmon. The Magic added former No. 1 pick Markelle Fultz but dealt away Jonathon Simmons to do it, and Fultz is more of a future asset than a present one, anyway.Accordingly, the FiveThirtyEight NBA predictions expect this division to fall off slightly: The division’s combined projected winning percentage is just 0.420, which would rank sixth-worst among the group of 10 teams listed above. Additionally, the Hornets are projected to win the division with a record of just 38-44, which would fall an incredible six wins short of the 44-win 2018 and 2007 Heat and 2006 Nuggets.What’s remarkable about the Southeast, though, is that each one of these teams has managed to post a losing record despite the opportunity to rack up wins against other Southeast teams. As a result, the win-loss records might actually undersell how bad the division really is. Consider two more reliable indicators of team quality: point differential and Basketball-Reference.com’s Simple Rating System (SRS). Point differential has been shown time and again to be more predictive of a team’s future performance than actual win-loss record, while SRS takes point differential and adjusts for strength of schedule, then scales that adjustment so the league average is 0 and every point represents one point above or below average.The 2018-19 Southeast division has the fifth-worst combined per-game point differential of the 30-team era. And when you adjust for those five teams’ relatively soft schedules, they’ve actually been outscored by 3.050 points per game, seemingly confirming this as the fifth-worst division (out of 90) since the then-Bobcats and now-Hornets came into the league. And given the aforementioned roster realities, it’s not at all difficult to see the Southeast sinking further into the depths of despair. Source: Basketball-Reference.com RANKSeasonDIVISIONWinnerWIN pct. 2014-15AtlanticRaptors0.598
Ohio State’s alma mater “Carmen Ohio” states that the bond between Buckeyes and this university lasts through “summer’s heat or winter’s cold.” Never has this been more true than at Sunday’s Frozen Diamond Faceoff. OSU fans have been known to travel to support their team, but rarely does such travel involve braving frigid temperatures for hours at a time. Yet temperatures in the mid-20s didn’t deter Buckeye fans from traveling to Cleveland from across the state and beyond to cheer on the OSU men’s hockey team as they took on Michigan in Ohio’s first-ever outdoor college hockey game. Even as the Wolverines cooled the Buckeyes off on the ice, 4-1, fans stayed put through wind and cold at Progressive Field. And it wasn’t just the fans who showed their dedication to the team. The OSU athletic band performed throughout the game, even performing “Script Ohio” on ice. Though they faced some challenges playing their instruments in freezing temperatures, their enthusiasm never deflated as they performed OSU staples throughout the game. Some band members even opted to keep their mouthpieces in their pockets to keep them warm when they weren’t playing, but when I spoke with them, there were no complaints about the cold. There was only excitement to be playing at such a historic event. The cheerleaders, likewise, trudged through a snow-covered baseball diamond to lead cheers and keep the crowd engaged as the sun set and temperatures continued to drop. The game itself was a spectacle unlike any other I’ve experienced during my time at OSU. The players, it seemed, were in awe of the experience, but their play didn’t have the same fire that many OSU hockey fans have come to expect from the No. 2-ranked team this season. But what the team lacked, the crowd made up for. As Michigan answered OSU’s only goal with two goals of its own in a 28-second period to cap the scoring, the crowd stayed put even though OSU’s hopes for a win had deflated. The final buzzer signaled an OSU fan’s worst nightmare — a Michigan victory, but the band still sounded the starting notes of “Carmen Ohio.” In perhaps the only appropriate finale to such an event, the team, the cheerleaders, the band and the fans linked together and sang out the words to the alma mater that they had lived out firsthand. OSU fans have proven their loyalty through “summer’s heat” time and time again. But Sunday, despite a loss to an archenemy, despite the fact that their mouths froze to their instruments and despite the fact that many probably couldn’t feel their toes, OSU fans proved their loyalty through “winter’s cold.”
Then-freshman forward Nichelle Prince (7) dribbles the ball past an Eastern Michigan defender Aug. 25, 2013 ar Jesse Owens Stadium. OSU won, 2-1, in overtime.Credit: Lantern file photoAfter splitting its last two games, the Ohio State women’s soccer team is preparing for a pair of tough contests on the road.OSU is set to travel to face No. 12 Wisconsin and Minnesota this weekend. The Buckeyes are 5-6-0 overall and 2-3-0 in Big Ten play after suffering a loss against then-No. 19 Illinois and gaining a win against Northwestern. Coach Lori Walker said the team showed signs of improvement over the weekend but still sees consistency as an issue.“We are continuing to take steps forward, I felt that there were moments on Friday (against Illinois) where we defended really well and then there were moments where there were continual breakdowns,” Walker said. “Sunday (against Northwestern) I thought there were moments we were really strong and we did a good job of getting pressure on the ball in higher places and that prevented some of the longer services that we have been struggling with.”Walker praised the work of some of the team’s underclassmen who’ve had an impact on the season so far.“(Freshman forward) Sammy Edwards has certainly been an offensive threat, she’s been able to find the back of the net and had some assists and she’s been pretty dangerous. Freshman midfielder Nikki Walts has done a great job to help connect our team and I think she’s got one of the better final passes in the conference,” Walker said. “(Freshman midfielder) Sydney Dudley is just a workhorse; she’s kind of an engine in the midfield for us and so I think she’s done an exceptional job.Walker added that redshirt-freshman goalkeeper Megan Geldernick has also been an impressive contributor just about mid way through the Buckeyes season.Freshman forward Sammy Edwards and Geldernick have each been named Big Ten Freshman of the Week over the course of the season.OSU has struggled on the road this season, with a 1-4-0 record in away games. Junior defenser Marisa Wolf said that having confidence and focus will be important for this weekend.“If we come out with a lot of energy and we aren’t thinking that we aren’t going to win, then I think that we definitely can be successful,” Wolf said. “We have proven ourselves to the higher teams like Duke and North Carolina, and Wisconsin is just one of those teams that we can bump off their pedestal that they’re on right now.”The Buckeyes defeated then-No. 18 Duke early in the season 1-0 before dropping a game against then-No. 4 North Carolina by the same score just two days later.Sophomore forward Nichelle Prince said if OSU can channel those performances into its matchup with Wisconsin, the Buckeyes have a chance to be successful.“We just need to bring that same energy that we bring at home games. Being at home, there’s a lot of energy, a lot of students coming out to watch you play, and we have to bring that same energy when we’re away and try to get some wins in when we’re on someone else’s turf,” said sophomore forward Nichelle Prince.The Buckeyes are scheduled to take on the Badgers on Friday at 8 p.m. in Madison, Wis. and then face Minnesota on Sunday at 2 p.m. in Minneapolis.