Basketball is a sport America dominates on the global stage. Soccer, not so much.
But this year’s American team enters the World Cup with high hopes — a soft group draw makes the chance to advance out of group play very possible. Thing is, in soccer, America is still learning how to win at the highest levels.
If you want to learn about winning, there is nobody better to talk to than Bill Russell. So the legendary Celtics center was invited and came out to Team USA practice on Monday, as the Associated Press reported.
“It’s pretty special to see him,” said goalkeeper Tim Howard, a high school basketball star at North Brunswick High School in New Jersey. “To be an ultimate great — we work so hard and feel you’ve got a little bit of success — and then you look at a guy like him and it’s like, how the heck do you do that?”
Howard was hoping to meet Russell after practice. Russell helped the Celtics win 11 NBA titles in 13 seasons from 1956-69.
“It’s pretty awesome to be around those type of people,” Howard said.
Hopefully a little of that winning magic can rub off on the Americans, who open the cup in a couple weeks with a match against England and Wayne Rooney.
The Nets’ signed Rockets restricted free agent Donatas Motiejunas to an offer sheet. Houston elected to match.
Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle:
Houston has a right to demand Motiejunas undergo a physical within two days of exercising its matching rights, which it did yesterday. Motiejunas is requires to answer questions truthfully and supply requested medical information.
If Motiejunas fails to meet those requirements, he hangs in limbo until the Rockets decide his fate.
At any time between now and March 1, they could elect to undo their offer-sheet match. That would invalidate Motiejunas’ offer sheet and make him a restricted free agent again, and the Nets couldn’t sign him for a year. On March 2, the same effect will become automatic.
I don’t see what Motiejunas gains by not reporting. If he fails his Houston physical, he’d go to Brooklyn on the terms of the offer sheet.
By not undergoing the physical, he goes nowhere.
Klay Thompson might have had the huge game for the Warriors, but Draymond Green, Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant teamed up for the Warriors’ most spectacular play against the Pacers.
Once Green released his long outlet pass, the ball travelled three-quarters of the court and into the basket without a player touching it and the floor simultaneously.
Here’s another angle:
Andrew Bogut patting Cody Zeller on the head, even if unintentional, was the perfect response to Dwight Powell dunking on the Hornets center.
There, there, Cody. It’ll be OK.
At least Charlotte got a 109-101 win over the Mavericks.
Klay Thompson scored an incredible 60 points in 29 minutes.
So, what did Stephen Curry do? Dump ice on his Warriors teammate during the post-game interview, of course.
That didn’t cool down Thompson, who’s probably still hot this morning.