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文章發表於 : 週三 7月 24, 2019 1:48 pm 
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NEW YORK -- Jason Collins has been warmly received in his historic return to the NBA. Now its time for his own fans to welcome him back. More than a week after becoming the leagues first openly gay player, Collins will finally get to play a home game Monday night when the Brooklyn Nets host the Chicago Bulls. "It will be a lot of fun," Collins said. "I have some family and friends coming to the game. Im looking forward to seeing them and obviously the first home game." He has played hundreds in a Nets uniform, though it was a white, red and blue one, and the home games were in New Jersey. Plenty of fans and employees of the organization remain from when Collins played there from 2001-08, so he will likely be greeted by a loud ovation if he gets into the game. "Ive always said Im not worried about the reaction," said Nets coach Jason Kidd, who played with Collins when the franchise reached consecutive NBA Finals in 2003-03. "I think they will always support a Net. Hes been a Net before. I think theyll be excited to have him, but the big thing is him being able to help us defensively." Collins and the Nets have kept the focus as much on basketball as possible. They all view him as a big man who will willingly defend and foul -- he has racked up 10 of them already in four games -- who can help pass along 12 years of NBA experience to younger teammates such as Mason Plumlee and Andray Blatche. The fact that hes gay makes him much more than that outside the Nets locker room, but he thinks that story line will die down soon enough. "Theres only so many ways you can write the story, or tell the story, and then it will just be about basketball," he said during the middle of last week. Collins thought it had already reached that point, mistakenly believing that Saturdays victory in Milwaukee would be the first time reporters didnt want to talk to him after the game. Not quite yet. Collins may just be a 14th man on the roster to the Nets, but hes still far more than that to the fans he inspired from the moment he decided to come out in a Sports Illustrated article last April. "I think it is a big deal. Hes showing a lot of courage. Youre talking to a guy who was around when Jackie Robinson came in. Whats the difference? Its just as groundbreaking. I just hope hes judged as a basketball player," said Butch Pye, 69, of Castle Rock, Colo., who attended the Nets victory in Denver on Thursday. Collins debut is currently his only guaranteed home game. Hes nearing the end of the 10-day contract he signed on Feb. 23 before facing the Los Angeles Lakers. NBA rules allow teams to sign players to two 10-day deals, then have to sign them for the rest of the year if they want to keep them. There are plenty of reasons to retain Collins. He has brought plenty of positive attention and is making an impact in the gay and lesbian community, with the NBA pledging to donate at least $100,000 from sales of his No. 98 jersey to the Matthew Shepard Foundation and the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network. But those having nothing to do with basketball, and the Nets stressed in the press release announcing Collins signing that the move was a basketball decision. He can still do enough to make it a wise one, even with just one basket so far. With Brook Lopez lost for the season and Kevin Garnetts minutes being monitored, Kidd needs a big man he trusts to fill in for a few minutes. And a guy like Collins can help even when hes not in the game. He has defended Shaquille ONeal and Tim Duncan in the NBA Finals, so knows what it takes to guard even the biggest stars, even if hes rarely the one doing it. "When I was a younger guy, I learned from Dikembe Mutombo and Alonzo Mourning. Its a cycle," Collins said. "Now that Im that old man at the end of the bench, that veteran, even though I may not be playing minutes, there definitely are ways I can help the team win." Wholesale Basketball Shoes Shop . Juventus announced details of the deal Saturday, saying that Morata signed a five-year contract with the club. The deal also includes an option for Madrid to buy Morata back for up to (euro)30 million ($40. Cheap Basketball Shoes Authentic . - Robert Griffin III has a sprained throwing shoulder that limited him in practice Wednesday as the Washington Redskins prepared for their season finale against the Dallas Cowboys. http://www.cheapbasketballshoesstore.net/. Andrews, Scotland - Oliver Wilson fired a final- round, 2-under 70 on Sunday and he held on to win the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship by one shot. Discount Basketball Shoes . Neither player was available Saturday for the Knicks 107-98 loss in Atlanta. "Were going in a different direction and weve got to figure out another spot or two for our ballclub," coach Mike Woodson said before the game. Cheap Basketball Shoes China . "[People] keep asking that question and its not a legit question because we dont have that right, we havent arrived yet," Casey responded. "Weve got to take each game at a time, each possession at a time and look at it that way.TORONTO – The tendency is to idealize the modern professional athlete as a gifted, money-making machine. A person who lives a life about which most can only dream. Remember, though, these guys are human beings. Wandering around the clubhouse before Saturdays game against the Rays, the stench of a listless effort still lingered. The Jays had been shut out the night before, two-hit by an opposing pitcher for the second time in three games. Sometimes, players arent that far removed from the fanbase. Theyre stumped about the slump. They have similar inquiries. One player pondered this in a casual conversation with TSN.ca: “What I cant understand is when did we get so bad?” This is a club at a crossroads. Its a team that from a positional perspective is built to win now. Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion, Adam Lind, Melky Cabrera and Jose Reyes are in the primes of their careers. Aside from Mississauga native, outfielder Dalton Pompey (now with Triple-A Buffalo), there are no positional prospects of consequence playing higher than A-ball. From a pitching perspective, theres a veteran presence featuring R.A. Dickey, Mark Buehrle and J.A. Happ, but its clear where the franchise is headed. Its rotation will be built around Aaron Sanchez, Marcus Stroman, Daniel Norris and, perhaps, Sean Nolin. The Jays are poised to build around their cadre of young pitching. If thats the case, its unrealistic to expect 200 innings and dominating 2015 seasons from those arms. Is the time coming to trade seasoned veterans to help replenish the positional prospect pool with major league-ready or near-major league ready players? At what point does Jose Bautista, who will be 34 in October, believe hes got a better shot at an elusive playoff appearance somewhere else? Will Adam Linds $7.5-million option be picked up or will the club buy him out for $1-million and go in a different direction? Casey Janssen, Colby Rasmus and Brandon Morrow are almost assuredly gone,, although the latter could return should he agree to lesser terms after his $10-million club option is declined.dddddddddddd. Should potential suitors be investigated for Buehrle and Dickey? Would there be any interest? There may be, but likely only if the Blue Jays are willing to eat part of Buehrles ($19-million) and Dickeys ($12-million) 2015 salaries. What should be particularly concerning to fans is that some players believe others in the room are still moping about the clubs relative inactivity leading up to the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline. Heres the problem: whats done is done or, in this case, what wasnt done, wasnt done. The players need to rally around one another, forget all else and play to win each day. The problem is some players were hoping for and expecting a move, or moves, at the deadline because they felt the team had significant holes that needed to be plugged. The August record of 5-13, entering Saturdays play, serves to confirm that notion and results in lingering frustration. It becomes a vicious circle. Guys who are upset nothing got done and are annoyed they werent addressed by the general manager or team president in the aftermath of July 31 begin to believe the organization doesnt care. Its impossible to imagine anybody not caring but, as is often the case in life, how an individual perceives a matter is his reality. The Jays offence is suffering from a power outage (10 home runs in August). The team that was stealing bases and using the hit and run during Mays hot stretch isnt doing much of that anymore. Jose Reyes has six stolen bases since the All-Star Break and Anthony Gose is back to plying his trade at Triple-A, the victim of being a guy with options. Meanwhile the pitching has gone into a funk in August (5.10 staff ERA). The team is struggling. Its playoff hopes are dwindling. Baseball is a game of failures, confidence can waver. If the Blue Jays are to make one final, desperate run toward an unlikely playoff spot, the team must first believe its good enough to do so. ' ' '


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