Los Angeles Clippers overcome adversity, Golden State Warriors to advance to NBA conference semifinals

first_imgNext victim.The Clippers over the past week have had to endure one of the bigger sports scandals in recent memory, no thanks to the racist comments of since-banned team owner Donald Sterling caught on tape.Battered but unbowed, they found a way to weather a hurtful and emotional storm when they defeated the Golden State Warriors 126-121 on Saturday to win Game 7 of their first-round Western Conference playoff series before 19,543 at Staples Center.The Clippers win the series 4-3 and advance to the conference semifinals and will play Game 1 at Oklahoma City on Monday. The Warriors, though they played a gallant series, will head home to Oakland, their season over. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error It was an incredible back-and-forth game with plenty of heroics.The Clippers trailed almost all of the first 2 1/2 quarters before they finally took the lead for the first time at 73-72 on a basket by J.J. Redick. The Clippers lead 87-84 heading into the fourth quarter.The Clippers led 103-96, but then the Warriors came back to take a 107-106 lead on a 3-pointer by Andre Iguodala with 4:24 to play. But the Clippers were not going to roll over on their homecourt and when Blake Griffin threw down a dunk with 1:54 to play, they were up 112-109.The Warriors called time out to set up the final moments of a real thriller.Blake Griffin, who led the Clippers with 24 points, made a layup then rolled over backward after hitting the floor for a 116-111 lead. Leading 118-115, DeAndre Jordan threw down a dunk off a lob by Griffin for a 120-115 lead.center_img But Draymond Greed nailed a 3-point basket to get the Warriors within 120-118 with 13 seconds to play. The Clippers’ J.J. Redick made two free throws with 12.1 seconds to play. Stephen Curry then threw up an air ball, and Chris Paul made two free throws for a 124-118 lead.Curry came back and made a 3-pointer to cut his team’s deficit to 124-121, but Darren Collison made two free throws with two seconds left to seal Golden State’s fate.Paul scored 22 points and had 14 assists for the Clippers and Jamal Crawford added 22 points. Redick scored 20 points.Curry led the Warriors with 33 points, Green had 24 and Klay Thompson 15.The Clippers trailed almost all of the first 2 1/2 quarters before they finally took the lead for the first time at 73-72 on a basket by J.J. Redick. The Clippers led 87-84 heading into the fourth quarter.The Warriors didn’t waste any time jumping on the Clippers and led seven points at 15-8 with the game just over four minutes old. They led 19-10 on a dunk by Iguodala at the 6:20 mark, but the Clippers fought back with a 6-0 run that culminated with a 3-footer by DeAndre Jordan to get within 19-16.Los Angeles got to within 23-21 on an 18-footer by Chris Paul, but Golden State finished the quarter on 9-1 run to lead 32-22 heading into the second quarter.The Warriors up their advantage to 34-22 at the outset of the second on two free throws by Curry, but then it was the Clippers’ time to get their fans revved up a bit.Beginning with two free throws by Darren Collison, they outscored the Warriors 7-0 to cut their deficit to 34-29.Los Angeles kept at Golden State, thanks in large part to sixth-man Jamal Crawford. When Crawford hit a 3-pointer, was fouled and made the free throw, the Warriors’ lead was down to 45-43.Down 49-44, Crawford buried another 3-pointer to get again get close at 49-47. Paul tied it 49-49 on a 16-footer with 3:58 left before intermission.Undaunted, the Warriors outscored the Clippers 15-7 the rest of the way to take a 64-56 lead into the break.Golden State shot 58.5 percent in the half, the Clippers 51.3. Crawford and Griffin both had 13 points in the half for Los Angeles, as did Stephen Curry and Draymond Green for Golden State.Before the game, the coaches engaged each other in psychological warfare after Clippers coach Doc Rivers was informed that Warriors coach Mark Jackson has been saying all the pressure is on the Clippers.“You know, whatever. He’s been saying that for a while, so I think what he’s trying to say is, ‘Please, my team, you’ve gotta relax yourself because it’s all on them.’ I think that’s what Mark’s really saying.”The Clippers are the No. 3 seed, the Warriors are No. 6. That’s not to mention that although both teams are battling nagging injuries, Golden State has not had the services of its starting post – Andrew Bogut – all series because of a fractured rib.Jackson pointed some of that out about 15 minutes after Rivers spoke to reporters.“I appreciatre Doc,” Jackson said. “We’re trying to play chess, three’s no question about it. It’s high level, I’m in over my head.”Laughs all around.“But the facts remain that they have two of the top 10 players in the world (meaning Blake Griffin and Chris Paul), the facts tell me that they have the Sixth-Man of the Year (Jamal Crawford), the facts tell me that have a future Hall of Fame coach.“The facts tell me that they’re a better basketball team over the course or 82 games, which made them the No. 3 seed, and have homecourt advantage in Game 7. So the facts are that they’re the better basketball team up until this point. And the pressure is on them to finish off a No. 6 seed.”last_img read more

US Forest Service Provides Paradise Fire Update

first_imgSubmitted by US Forest ServiceThe Paradise Fire continues to burn north of the Queets River in Olympic National Park. The west end of the fire is not moving and the wet line there is holding. The fire is located approximately 13 miles northeast of Quinault and has grown to 407 acres in size. It has moved into exceptionally steep terrain. Heavy mixed conifer fuels, snags, and the precipitous landscape pose a significant threat to firefighters. Rolling rocks, burning debris and falling snags are common in such areas. Smoke jumpers who had been staffing the fire were released today since the fire has spread into an area that is inaccessible. Firefighter safety remains a top priority, and crews will engage only when it is safe to do so.“We are doing everything possible to minimize the fire’s spread, but right now we do not have many options,” said Todd Rankin, the park’s Fire Management Officer. “Traditional suppression tactics do not work in this fuel type since the fire spread is occurring in the forest canopy, not on the ground.” Lichens, growing high in the tree tops, are catching on fire and carrying the flames from tree to tree. Fire behavior analysts have determined that this is the Olympic Peninsula’s driest year since 1951, the year of the Forks Fire.The weather forecast calls for continued hot and dry weather, and the Paradise Fire suppression efforts will likely get more complex. A Type 2 Incident Management Team has been ordered and is expected to arrive on Wednesday to assist the park. Current resources include two fire modules with 18 total firefighters, two helicopters, and numerous support personnel.If you have questions, please contact Fire Information at 360-565-2986 or click here for more updates. Facebook0Tweet0Pin0last_img read more

Texans players kneel during anthem after team owner calls them ‘inmates’

first_img Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Players have been kneeling before and during the national anthem this season as a protest against racial injustice in the United States. About 40 of the Texans, a majority of the team, did so on Sunday before their game against the Seattle Seahawks, apparently in response to McNair. Some of their team-mates chose to stand. A number of Seahawks players also knelt, as they have done throughout the season.“I’m never going to force anybody to do anything that they don’t feel comfortable with. I think we all felt the same way on Friday [after McNair’s comments],” Texans guard Duane Brown said after the game. “And as far as the demonstration went, some people didn’t feel quite comfortable doing it, some people did. But we all supported each other, and that was what was important. I don’t think anyone looks at anyone differently for what they stood for or didn’t stand for.”ESPN reported that McNair’s comments at a meeting last week between owners, team executives and the NFL commissioner, Roger Goodell, “stunned some in the room”.“After the owners finished, Troy Vincent [NFL executive vice-president of football operations] stood up,” the article said. “He was offended by McNair’s characterization of the players as ‘inmates’. Vincent said that in all his years of playing in the NFL – during which, he said, he had been called every name in the book, including the N-word – he never felt like an ‘inmate’.”McNair reportedly apologized to Vincent later, “saying that he felt horrible and that his words weren’t meant to be taken literally”. Share on Pinterest Support The Guardian Pinterest news The NFL stood by African American players … until its money was threatened Topics Share via Email Houston Texans Play VideoPlayCurrent Time 0:00/Duration Time 0:00Loaded: 0%Progress: 0%FullscreenMuteThis is a modal window. Share on WhatsAppcenter_img US sports NFL NFL Week Eight: Seahawks win thriller over Texans … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Houston Texans players have staged a protest against their team’s owner, Bob McNair, after he said “we can’t have the inmates running the prison” when speaking about the NFL protest movement. Read more In an official statement, McNair said: “I regret that I used that expression. I never meant to offend anyone and I was not referring to our players. I used a figure of speech that was never intended to be taken literally. I would never characterize our players or our league that way and I apologize to anyone who was offended by it.”On Friday, the Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins was an unexpected no-show at practice. The head coach, Bill O’Brien, declined to address whether it was related to McNair’s controversial comments.McNair, an energy and real estate magnate who is estimated to be worth $3.5bn, backed Donald Trump for president – giving a Super Pac $2m in 2016 – and then donated $1m to Trump’s inauguration committee. The US president is a vocal critic of the NFL protest movement. “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out! He’s fired. He’s fired!’” Trump said in September.The protest movement is becoming an increasing worry for NFL owners, some of whom believe it is hitting the league’s bottom line. The league’s television ratings are down this season, although it is not clear whether this is directly linked to the protests, as TV sports audiences have fallen across America. The Dallas Cowboys owner, Jerry Jones, has said he would bench any player who knelt during the anthem and has said sponsors have told him they are worried about the protests putting off customers. “There is no question the league is suffering negative effects from these protests,” Jones said last week. Share on LinkedIn Twitter Share on Messenger Since you’re here… Reuse this contentlast_img read more