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in Share With Other Members Tue Mar 31, 2020 10:01 pm
by jokergreen0220 • 480 Posts

FIVE QUICK NBA THOUGHTS: 1. Tony Brown Super Bowl Jersey . RAPTORS STRUGGLING: The bottom line is the true test in sports isnt just how you handle failure, but how you handle success. This team has gotten off track from the formula that it was using beautifully of late. The games against the Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Lakers and Mondays loss to the Charlotte Bobcats all had major stretches where this team looked like they acted as if they had already "arrived" and didnt have to do the dirty work anymore and just wanted to win pretty instead of grinding it out and laying it on the line with great effort and passion. I felt bad for coach Dwane Casey in Charlotte. Its a helpless feeling as a coach when you have a team that thinks that they can beat folks with talent and not have to do the work to win. He was scrambling, trying to mix and match combinations and burn timeouts to give wake up calls, yet in the end, a terrific desperate effort came up short. As you can tell, I havent even mentioned Xs and Os once and dont have to or plan to - thats not the issue here, nor is it talent. To sum it up, winning is really, really, really hard to do, but losing is really easy. Youre a 20-20 club. Do you want to be mediocre or average or do you want to accomplish something? Its gut-check time and theres a very simple solution to the problem: Respect your opponent, have top-notch attention to detail, compete with great passion and stay committed to the team concept. You do that and youll be fine. If you dont, there will be changes. The trade deadline is 30 days away. You dont want to get stuck in no mans land. You gave away three games in the past six days to teams that are banged up with slightly inferior talent levels and you have to wonder about the direction you want to take this. I love what general manager Masai Ujiri has done with this whole thing, being patient with the process. Its all on the players now. Its time to produce and, more importantly, learn from this experience and, if you do have success again, dont let these things happen again. You cant stay like this - either cross the line and be a consistently good team with great habits or make changes. The clock is ticking now. 2. HERE THEY COME: Hearing footsteps yet? Im sure youve all noticed that the Atlanta Hawks have gotten the third seed back in its possession and the Brooklyn Nets are now breathing right down the Raptors backs with Deron Williams back in the line-up, as well as a huge game on Monday between the Raptors and Nets in Brooklyn coming up. And dont sleep on the Washington Wizards and Chicago Bulls, either. Theyre both 20-20 and not going away. The Raptors had a chance to make hay against weak competition and didnt do it. Things get tougher and tougher now. Can they still win the Atlantic? Sure. Can they get the #3 seed? Sure. If, and its a big if, they play the way theyre capable of playing. Excellence is a habit, not an act. This is a nice test coming up and well all find out in the next few weeks what theyre all about. I think they can do it. Its a good group of guys with enough talent that get more than a good share of the coaching and leadership they need to be successful. Theyve now put themselves into a "backs are against the wall" scenario and maybe thats what this team needs and I cant wait to find out. The middle part of the schedule is when the distancing starts to happen. Who will fight and contend and who will fade away and make plans for golf and the beach for mid-April? The Indiana Pacers and Miami Heat already know what their spring plans are, but the rest of the East is in complete flux. It is all starting to take shape now and the competition is on. 3. NICK YOUNG (Lakers): This guy can flat out score. He torched the Raptors on Sunday with some ridiculous shots and then drops 31 against a terrific Bulls defence on Monday. Hes one of those guys that will always have a job because its hard to find guys who can heat up like him and bring you back into a game. His defence and maturity are areas you wonder about sometimes, but he is a talented guy who has some high octane ability. He creates his own shot quite well and shoots it from distance effectively. Hes able to get to the foul line and has good creativity with his ball skills. He seems to wear out his welcome eventually, but while you have him, he gets you the numbers, thats for sure. 4. RICKY RUBIO (Timberwolves): Hes an exceptional defender and a wonderfully entertaining and creative passer and playmaker. With that said, for his game to truly get to the next level, he has to become a guy who is a consistent long range shooting threat in order to open up his impact in the screen and roll game and space the defence out, because youve got to come out and guard him rather than sag off him. Hes a point guard who can make all the plays with amazing vision and reflexes, yet for him to reach that upper tier, he needs to get his shot mechanics in order. He has great work habits, so Im sure hell pay the price. If he gets that together, he can make that next step. 5. JOAKIM NOAH (Bulls): You gotta love this guy. Hes already had three 20 and 15 games this season and had 17 and 21 against the Lakers last night in an OT win. Since the Bulls traded Luol Deng, hes been on a mission and hes playing angry and with amazing energy. Hes a winner in every sense and doesnt get enough credit for this, but hes a really good passer. Hes a smart player who makes the right play next in your offensive sequence. Hes got a bigger piece of the puzzle in the Bulls scheme now with Deng in Cleveland and hes responding. Noah is not a bad guy to bank on. And, by the way, Im happy for former Raptor DJ Augustin. Hes found a home with this Bulls team and playing pretty well. Hes a good guy who has the talent to help you win.Im glad its worked out for him. Raven Greene Super Bowl Jersey .C. -- Steve Spurrier was much happier about South Carolinas improved performance than about his lastest career milestone. Brett Favre Super Bowl Jersey . Forsman closed with a 3-under 69 in windy conditions Sunday for his third Champions Tour title. He beat Jay Don Blake by two shots. http://www.packersonlineteamstore.com/rashan-gary-jersey.html . He was signed to help with depth to the receiving corps because of the loss of Shamawd Chambers to the 6-game injured list.BEREA, Ohio -- Johnny Manziel held up his new brown No. 2 jersey and flashed a smile that beamed to Texas. With whirring cameras providing the soundtrack, he was welcomed to his NFL home. Johnny Football arrived. Cleveland may never be the same. Humble, confident and charmingly comfortable in handling any question, Manziel was introduced Friday by the Browns, who positioned themselves perfectly in the first round of the draft to select the polarizing Texas A&M quarterback with equal amounts of skill and swag. Sitting alongside fellow first-round pick Justin Gilbert, a cornerback from Oklahoma State taken 14 picks ahead of him, Manziel said hes stepping into a life he believes will be even crazier than his college days. "Im going into it expecting madness," he said. Manzielmania hit Cleveland like a spring thunderstorm Friday. As of 6 p.m., the Browns had sold 2,300 season tickets -- renewals and new purchases -- since the start of Thursdays first round. In the hours after Manziel was chosen with the No. 22 overall pick, the teams sales staff struggled to keep up with phones that barely stopped ringing. At the teams gift shot in FirstEnergy Stadium, fans waited in long lines to buy Manziel jerseys at $150 a pop. The 2012 Heisman Trophy winner took all the attention in stride. Hes used to it, having had his every move on and off the field chronicled since the first time he scrambled out of the pocket and made a magical play for the Aggies. "It means a lot to me, obviously," Manziel said about Clevelands hyped reaction. "Ive gotten a lot of support already, but theres work that needs to be done." Manziel said he doesnt carry the burden of being Johnny Football, the kid who turns giant stadiums into his personal playground and the one who occasionally hangs out with rap stars and LeBron James. "Im Johnny Manziel," he said. "Johnny Football is what I am in the media and what is out there. I accept it and Im very accepting of it. At the same time, I know who I am. Im Johnny Manziel from Kerrville, Texas. I dont let that get to me too much or let all that weigh me down or ever make me lose sleep at night." As he spoke, Gilbert quietly took it all in as he sat next to his famous teammate. Gilbert confessed to getting caught up in Manziels selection while he was in New York. " I was on my way back to the hotel and I think my mom or somebody told me that we had Johnny Manziel so I let down the (car) window and started screaming, Cleveland Browns, Cleveland Browns were here," he said. "Im excited hes here. I expect nothing but the best from him.&qquot; The Browns have been waiting for someone, anyone like Manziel for years. Paul Hornung Super Bowl Jersey. The team has started 20 quarterbacks since 1999, a roll call that begins with Ty Detmer and includes first-round busts like Tim Couch, Brady Quinn and Brandon Weeden. Manziels well aware of the Browns failings and hopes to be the one to solidify things. "I have goals for myself, expectations," he said. "But I feel like if I put in the time necessary and I do what Im supposed to do and really open myself up to these coaches and let them teach me and mould me into being a good football player and continue to build on what I did the past couple years as far as getting better year by year, piece by piece, then Ill have some success. Ill believe that." Manziel knows there are those who feel his size will limit his success. Hes the first QB under six feet to be taken in the first round since 1953. "You can measure height," he said. "You cant really measure heart." Manziel will compete with Brian Hoyer to open next season behind centre. Hoyer started two games before sustaining a season-ending knee injury in 2013, but is the incumbent. When he was told by general manager Ray Farmer that the team was drafting Manziel, Hoyer said, "bring it on." Manziel wasnt surprised by Hoyers reaction. "I wouldnt expect anything less," he said. "Hes a competitive guy. I feel like thats exactly what I want in a teammate." Manziel has spent most of the past two years in a fishbowl, so it was no surprise that photos of his post-draft celebration in New York with family and friends, including Drake and Cavaliers All-Star guard Kyrie Irving, quickly circulated through social media. One photo showed Manziel swigging from a magnum of champagne. Asked about his late-night actions, Manziel offered a quick defence. "Im 21 years old," he said. Manziel intends to shelve the party-boy antics as he strives to live up to his game-changing reputation and show the Browns they made the right move in drafting him. Hes not looking for any special treatment and intends to earn the trust and faith of teammates. "Im low guy on the totem pole," he said. "I know my place. More than anything I need to show these guys with actions, other than words or anything I can say, to earn their respect. It really is all about earning these guys respect. Im going to do all that I can to try and make these guys comfortable with me every day and know that I want whats best for this team. "Im going to come in and work extremely hard." Johnny Lunchbox. ' ' '

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