The NBA’s second-leading scorer took a surprising backseat in the All-Star Game

Often part of three-point-guard lineups with Thomas and Lowry, Walker served as the distributor of the group, handing out six assists while attempting just six shots. Most memorably, Walker made a pull-up 3 in the fourth quarter.

An All-Star starter for the first time, Butler had a quiet evening, putting up six points, three rebounds and two assists in 19 minutes. He scored a pull-up over Jordan and set up Antetokounmpo with an alley-oop.

Game Youth Taylor Lewan Jersey The NBA’s second-leading scorer took a surprising backseat in the All-Star Game, handing out as many assists (12, a team high) as he scored points. All nine of Harden’s shot attempts came from beyond the arc, of which he made four. Yet Harden’s attempts to make the spectacular play also resulted in 10 turnovers, more than all his West teammates combined (seven). And one of his 3s was actually an errant alley-oop pass.

With trade rumors swirling before he was traded to New Orleans, Cousins got the Jahlil Okafor treatment on the All-Star stage, playing just two minutes early in the game. He made a fairly deep 3 but missed his two other attempts from beyond the arc.

“I could speak all night about Russell,” Durant said. “An emotional guy that would run through the wall for me. I don’t take it for granted. … I love you, man. I love you.”

Jean Segura Game Jersey Their relationship has always been about ups and downs. The lob brought them back together, if only for a brief moment, and while the players on the bench celebrated, Durant and Westbrook stood on opposite sides of the huddle. They didn’t interact outside of a couple low-fives when one would sub out. During timeouts Durant would stand on one side with Green, Westbrook on the other side with Harden.

Arsenal will be eliminated in the Champions League round of 16, because that¡¯s what always happens

Arsenal has drawn Bayern Munich in the round of 16 of this year¡¯s Champions League. Wonderful. Just wonderful. No one expected this, at all. The next surprise is sure to be Arsenal losing the tie. Very original. Ars¨¨ne Wenger¡¯s team hasn¡¯t advanced past the round of 16 since the 2010-2011 season. In that time, they¡¯ve faced and lost to Barcelona, Monaco, Bayern, Bayern, AC Milan, and Barcelona again.

This year there¡¯s hope! Arsenal is on a spectacular run of form with its stars at their best. Alexis S¨¢nchez is scoring for fun; Mesut ?zil is being angelic as always; Theo Walcott has accepted and grown formidable in his role on the right. The midfield is mostly fit. The defense now actually has players who can tackle and, well, defend, rather than being a collection of misfit toys. Petr Cech can catch the ball and stop shots unlike Manuel Almunia and ?ukasz Fabia¨½ski, and he hasn¡¯t shown any indication that he smokes cigarettes in the showers like Wojciech Szcz?sny.
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Authentic Youth Scott Hartnell Jersey It’s also worth noting that the Mets aren’t necessarily force-feeding the Kool-Aid. In fact, depending on who you listen to and which sound bite you choose to focus on, it appears they might even have a grasp on the reality of their situation. “Obviously, I don’t have a crystal ball,” said Harvey, hedging ever so slightly when asked if he expects to return to form next season. Said Alderson: “Am I confident they’re all going to be 100 percent? Well that would probably be unrealistic to believe.”

If they are all 100 percent, and they all manage to stay 100 percent throughout the majority of the season, well then — and only then — does Syndergaard’s tweet hold water. Then and only then does New York belong in the best rotation conversation along with the Cubs and Red Sox . Then and only then are the Mets a safe bet to play deep into October and turn MiPS into the new, tried-and-true face of baseball analytics.

In the meantime, with all due respect to Thor, I’m going to have to agree to disagree.

Will Tiger Woods retire or just limp away?

Tiger Woods will not receive a golf watch for his 20-plus years on the job.

He won’t be making a David Ortiz-like farewell tour of Torrey Pines, Bay Hill, or Augusta, when it’s his time to walk away from the game.

On the wings SMU has senior Sterling Brown and sophomore Jarrey Foster. Both players are big wings (6’6 and about 225 pounds) who set the tone defensively and can shoot from distance. Tying the lineup together is Ben Moore, a 6’8 senior who looks nothing like a center but does a little bit of everything in the middle to maximize SMU’s versatility. He’s the only non-shooter on the floor but he’s an active rebounder, a good passer, and excels as a cutter.

With so many players capable of playing interchanging roles, SMU has a decidedly modern look. It also has balance as the No. 23 offense and No. 14 defense in KenPom’s efficiency rankings. Even without Brown on the sidelines or Moore running the show, there’s a case to be made this is the best team SMU has had in recent years.

For the program, this season should be worth the wait. The fanbase seems recharged, the atmosphere at games has been great, and Tony Romo and George W. Bush are even making appearances in the crowd.

After everything that’s happened to SMU, it’s easy to forget that the last time this team was in the NCAA Tournament, it lost at the buzzer on a goaltending call on Bryce Alford’s air ball. That would be a controversy that hangs over some programs for years. For SMU, it was just another bump in the road on the way to this season.

It was a nightmare to get here, but SMU came out of it all as energized as ever. Now it’s time to find out how good this team really is.

How does getting a hot dog stand in Staples Center rank among your accomplishments?

Youth Colin Kaepernick Jersey I was really stoked when it happened. I’ve been going to Lakers games since I was a youngster. It’s fun to be able to feed lots of people instead of 80 people a night. I think it’s a great product for 1,000 people.
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You blend in Stouffer’s to your mac and cheese mix. Why Stouffer’s?

It’s kind of shocking, right? It’s just one of those things you grew up with. It gives me that balance where I can keep it consistently very strong [at three different stands]. I don’t want to overcomplicate the recipe. I want it to be really good.

It’s been just over a week since the Patriots pulled off the greatest comeback in Super Bowl history (maybe the greatest comeback in all of football … ever). By all accounts, even if you factor in the choke job from the Falcons coaching staff, it was a major accomplishment by every player and coach wearing New England’s uniform. But Tom Brady wants to make it clear that your standards, your average Joe Easy Chair who merely enjoys watching the game, are not good enough for him. He wants to make it clear that it was “not one of his best games ever.”

“No one wants to see anything like that,” Sprewell said. “Not just for New York, but for the NBA family. Hopefully it will be something that everybody can just somehow iron out and get past.”

Sprewell was one of many former Knicks players to be honored on Sunday, including Bernard King, Bill Bradley, Herb Williams, Larry Johnson, Vin Baker, John Wallace, and Kenny Walker. Dolan sat in his courtside seats next to Sprewell and King.

New York’s homage to its former greats comes just days after Dolan banned ex-Knicks All-Star Charles Oakley from entering Madison Square Garden. The ban came as a result of Oakley’s arrest during the first quarter of New York’s loss to the Los Angeles Clippers.

Manuel showed the ability to get the best out of Robert Alford and second-year cornerback Jalen Collins

Mike Adamle, a former NFL running back who went on to a long career as a Chicago and national sportscaster, said he has dementia.

Adamle, 67, acknowledged memory lapses and mood swings in an interview with Chicago’s WMAQ-Channel 5 that aired Tuesday. He also said tests in January showed he likely has chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a degenerative brain disease associated with repeated blows to the head. CTE cannot be confirmed until after death.

Adamle went on leave from his job as a sports anchor for WMAQ nearly a year ago, and he can no longer work or drive.

He starred at Northwestern and played for the Kansas City Chiefs, New York Jets and Chicago Bears. He held local and national broadcasting jobs with NBC and ABC and co-hosted the syndicated “American Gladiators” television show.

It seems the changes are not just related to the Super Bowl loss but more about issues throughout the season, at least in Smith’s case, as the Falcons allowed 25.4 points per game, which ranked 27th in the NFL.
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Manuel showed the ability to get the best out of Robert Alford and second-year cornerback Jalen Collins, who replaced Desmond Trufant after the Pro Bowl cornerback underwent season-ending pectoral surgery.

Joe Thornton Authentic Jersey Although Manuel appears to be the strongest internal candidate, he’s not the only one. Defensive pass game coordinator Jerome Henderson, linebackers coach Jeff Ulbrich and receivers coach Raheem Morris all could get looks.

Henderson is a candidate to possibly join former Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan with the 49ers.

The Atlanta Falcons are strongly considering secondary coach Marquand Manuel to become their next defensive coordinator, sources told ESPN on Wednesday.

he did not look like the dominant force Houston had come to know in the previous five seasons

¡°Jules has been incredible since he¡¯s really assumed that main spot on our team,¡± Brady said of the receiver’s performance in 2013. ¡°I¡¯ve always wanted him to succeed so badly, and he¡¯s put so much into it. He¡¯s come a long way. He¡¯s fought his way up.¡±

While injuries stunted some of Edelman’s early-career growth, that wasn¡¯t the only reason he was more of a role player, with his primary contributions coming on special teams.
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Jonathan Lucroy Limited Jersey ¡°We had a lot of good football players come here, and you¡¯re not just given something here overnight. You have to go out and earn it and put in your time,¡± he said. ¡°The team needed me at different positions, doing different things at the time, because we had the receiver position covered at the time. That¡¯s football. You have to put in your time and earn your stripes and be prepared for an opportunity when you get it.¡±

Edelman obviously was ready. The slow start to his career highlights how remarkable it is that he could potentially move up to No. 2 on a list of some very impressive receivers by Sunday night.

¡°Just to know that there¡¯s new levels to reach that I haven¡¯t even reached yet is exciting,¡± Watt said. ¡°It¡¯s not like I¡¯m just out here trying to come back and be a football player again. I¡¯m still trying to continue to capitalize on what I was before and be even better than I was before. So, it¡¯s always about being the best version of you that you can be and if I¡¯m not trying to be the best player ever then I¡¯m doing everyone a disservice. If I¡¯m not going out here and I¡¯m trying to be the best football player ever then it¡¯s a disservice to myself, my fans, my teammates.”

Though Watt played in the first three games of the season, he did not look like the dominant force Houston had come to know in the previous five seasons. And though Watt said he’s glad for the extended period of time to recover from his back injury, he is ready to be back on the field.

That’s exactly what Bell feels he needed to hear

Green plays hard and smart. He’s a hungry offensive rebounder, but he’s not crashing the glass willy-nilly, leaving the indefatigable Grizzlies in the lurch going the other way.

But when he senses a chance — an open corridor to the rim, a size mismatch — Green revs his motor to its highest gear:

That is smart basketball. Green drills little Ty Lawson with a pick, realizes Lawson is stuck on his back, and darts through a swath of open space for a putback Jam-Jam. The Grizzlies win because they stay within themselves, minimize mistakes, and play hard every damn second. Green has absorbed that ethos.

As Bell tells it, not once did the Steelers organization try to implement a three-strikes plan or deliver an empty pep talk. Tomlin didn’t castigate the player he affectionately calls “Juice” because of a smooth open-field running style similar to O.J. Simpson. The edict: Come back stronger for the final 13 games.

That’s exactly what Bell feels he needed to hear. Bell said he explained to several teammates, sometimes in groups, exactly what happened, and they believed the story was plausible. When asked by ESPN to retell the story, Bell cited a short-lived Twitter video in which he explains the confusion over an early-morning testing time and scheduling issues. In the video, which he posted and removed, Bell said he hadn’t smoked marijuana since December 2014.

By now, Bell has eased those concerns with his play (though his past might cause trepidation for the Steelers when it comes to a potential megadeal long term). But from the very beginning, his Steelers teammates were publicly supportive, more inclined to encourage the hard-working and likable Bell than lanky receiver Martavis Bryant, who has missed 20 regular-season games because of marijuana-related offenses. The tone Bell set in meetings and on-field work each day offset any potential character concerns because, as several players have said, “he works his ass off.”

Veteran defensive end Dwight Freeney will retire

Veteran defensive end Dwight Freeney will retire. The seven-time Pro Bowler told ESPN.com he won’t decide on his future until at least a month after the season concludes. That could be awhile from now if the Falcons make a Super Bowl run. But Freeney, who won a Super Bowl with the Colts, signed just a one-year deal with the Falcons and has considered retirement every year since the 2012 season. He turns 37 next month, so it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him walk away for good. — Vaughn McClure

Look for the Panthers to add a left tackle in free agency with the future of Michael Oher (concussion) unsure and his replacement, Mike Remmers, a free agent. They could re-sign Remmers to play the position, but he didn’t have a particularly good year there. So maybe the Panthers go out and sign somebody like Minnesota’s Matt Kalil, the brother of Carolina center Ryan Kalil. Matt is coming off a hip injury and the Vikings are looking to overhaul their offensive line. — David Newton

Authentic Terrence Ross Jersey So what’s the most unusual thing Crawford ate in China?

“The stuff you think is chicken that’s not chicken!” he said. “Everything else, the time, the money, you can’t complain.”

Crawford is playing for the Grand Rapids Drive of the NBA Development League this season.

Shavlik Randolph: ‘Offers were just staggering’

Like a number of Americans, Randolph was first lured to the CBA during the 2011 NBA lockout. With the possibility of losing most or all of the season, many players looked abroad, with Europe and China providing the most lucrative options.

Glover Quin Authentic Jersey “Compared to the leagues in Europe at the time, China was just offering so much more money,” Randolph said. “The offers were just staggering per month compared to what Europe was offering. … Plus, a lot of players that I had played with and against in the NBA had signed in China. That made me feel more comfortable that I was going to know players over there.”

Randolph, who played sparingly in his first five NBA seasons, remained in China after the lockout was resolved and routinely averaged more than 20 points and 10 rebounds in his first four CBA seasons. Because the CBA calendar spans only five months, players are able to finish seasons in the NBA — something the former Duke University product did in 2013 and 2014.

Dez Bryant signs 5-year, $70 million contract with Cowboys

The Dallas Cowboys signed wide receiver Dez Bryant to a long-term contract, the team announced on Wednesday. Bryant will now play on a five-year contract worth $70 million, with $45 million guaranteed, according to Chris Mortensen of ESPN.
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Bryant gets $32 million guaranteed upon signing the deal. The full $45 million becomes guaranteed on March 15, 2016, the first day of the 2016 league year.

The Cowboys used the franchise tag on Bryant in March, which would have paid him $12.823 million for next season, but Bryant continually expressed his desire for a bigger deal. After months of back and forth between the two sides, they were finally able to reach an agreement before the July 15 deadline for long-term contracts.

Last season, Bryant was one of the top receivers in the league, and now he’ll be paid like one. Although he won’t earn as much as Calvin Johnson, who signed a seven-year, $113.45 million contract with the Detroit Lions in 2012, Bryant still got the pay raise he was seeking.

In England, where fans of all 32 teams will spend lots of money to travel to Wembley for their once- or maybe twice-annual NFL fix, that’s a terrible draw. And the Brits know that: they follow free agency and the draft and play fantasy football. In terms of NFL IQ, they’re really well-spoken.

Most European NFL fans already have a team. Remember that stupid guy from college who saw a Guy Ritchie film and woke up the next day as a lifelong Manchester United or Arsenal fan?

Womens Brandon McCarthy Jersey Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins: I’m getting tired of waiting for Tannehill to live up to the promise he shows from time to time on the field, but here we are again.

Matt Ryan is only 31 years old. And there are many reasons why a team does or doesn’t win championships

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The NFL playoffs — and the race to Super Bowl LI — are in full swing, including this weekend’s divisional round games. Check out ESPN.com’s coverage of every postseason game.

You’re the presumptive NFL MVP and one of the most statistically proficient quarterbacks of this generation. But we don’t know yet if you’re a champion. Can you take a team to the Super Bowl championship? Will you elevate your legacy to the highest levels of history? Or will you go down as a great passer who fell short of transcendent?

I know. Matt Ryan is only 31 years old. And there are many reasons why a team does or doesn’t win championships. Quarterback play is the most important factor, but it’s not the only one. There may never be a better chance for Ryan and the Falcons to make a run, especially after dispatching the Seattle Seahawks in Saturday’s 36-20, divisional-round victory.

But the Steelers seem to understand what it takes to win in January. The defensive game plan was to limit Tyreek Hill (45 total yards), then apply enough pressure on Alex Smith that he couldn’t find tight end Travis Kelce (five catches, 77 yards).

“It was a big focus trying to prevent their playmakers from making plays and just keeping them contained,” said linebacker Bud Dupree, whose hit on Smith in the first half caused a Ryan Shazier interception.

This game was eerily similar to their Week 15 win in Cincinnati, with Boswell also connecting on six field goals.

And now it’s on to New England.

Game Kids David Savard Jersey “These are the two best teams in the AFC,” said Bell about the Steelers and Patriots for the AFC title. “It should be a showdown.”