Tuesday, May 28, 2013
In search for his first French Open title, Nova Djokovic overwhelmed David Goffin in a hotly contested match 7-6(5), 6-4, 7-5 Tuesday at Roland Garros.
Djokovic found the stiffness of beating Goffin in the first set as it once tied at 5-5 yet the Serbian champion delivered his best after that. It was evident the Djokovic wants this match to pursue his dream of winning the French Open.
As the No 1 player in men's tennis, the French Open will be his most difficult hurdle because of the presence of Rafael Nadal in the draw. Djokovic will advance to the next round after cherishing this victory over Goffin.
The toughness of Djokovic in this match was obvious as he was not broken at all by Gofinn. Djokovic volleyed through his forehand with precision and class while Goffin tried to stand against those volleys.
Djokovic won all the major titles except the French Open in which he was denied by Nadal last year in the Finals. Djokovic had won four Australian Open, one Wimbledon, and one US Open to elevate him as one of the best tennis players ever.
Monday, May 20, 2013
A mismatch? All experts believe that Miami is the big favorite in winning the Eastern Conference Finals over the Indiana Pacers. On paper alone, the Heat have the advantage aside from the experience which is intangible.
With all the eyes pointing to the victory of the Heat, the word "upset" cannot be erased as the Pacers have the momentum to be great. In the Semifinal round, the Pacers trampled down the heavily favored New York Knicks in six games. Pacers showed force that can have its way against the NBA defending Champion Miami.
There's a slim chance of possibility for the Pacers to upset the Heat. Let's look at some of the factors for the Pacers to be in the NBA Finals.
1. Contain LeBron James - Easier said than done. No team can stop James but to contain him is another story. Not allowing James to maximize his potential will keep the Pacers within reach. This means that the defensive scheme must be to destruct James in everytime he shoots. A low percentage in the fieldgoal category will mean a success for Indiana's defense.
2. Eliminate the outside shooting of Miami - Never allow Ray Allen, Shane Battier, and even Mario Chalmers to have good looks outside the arc.
3. Control the boards - With James and the outside shooting awful, the rebounding department must be in the side of the Pacers. An all out effort from David West and Roy Hibbert to fight for every miss shots against Chris Anderson, Chris Bosh and even James.
4. Fluid offense - the first three keys have to do with the defense. The next big thing for the Pacers to have a shot of dispatching the Heat is to have the offensive display that even the defense of the Heat cannot negate. What about an explosive series for Lance Stephenson and Roy Hibbert?
5. Stay within distance until the last two minutes - Allowing themselves to have an opportunity to steal games in the final two minutes of each game will be crucial. Sometimes the Heat couldn't deliver when the game is on the line. How about making each game decided in the final minutes?
Pacers vs Heat tv coverage in the Philippines is on ABS-CBN Network. In the United States, it will always be on TNT, ESPN and ABC.
Sunday, May 19, 2013
Barangay Ginebra San Miguel Kings vs Alaska Aces Result: A sweep ?
Import Rob Dozier delivered one of his best performances in the PBA, probably the last one as the Alaska Aces trounced Barangay Ginebra, 104-80, in Game 3 of the best-of-five Commissioners' Cup.
Dozier had 27 points and 20 rebounds to dominate for the Aces as Barangay Ginebra couldn't stop him. Dozier also made an impact in helping his team to be aggressive on the defense. Also, Calvin Abueva scored 22 points to complement the high octane game of Dozier. Abueva's energy paved the way for Ginebra to have the edge in terms of the speed of the game.
This is the 14th title of Alaska and the first time without coach Tim Cone. Alaska was coached by Luigi Trillio to complete the 3-0 sweep in the Commissioners Finals.
LA Tenorio scored 18 points while Mark Caquiao had 12 points for the cause of the Kings. However, the effort in shutting down the offense of the Aces was not sufficent to extend the series.
Ginebra coach Al Francis Chua did everything in his lineup to shake up an to find the right combinations but of no avail.
Thursday, May 16, 2013
Oklahoma City Thunder Early Exit in the Western Conference
What happened to the Oklahoma City Thunder? Just simple thoughts about the fall of the Thunder who were supposed to be back in the NBA Finals again. The fact that the Thunder grabbed the No 1 seed in the Western Conference means that they were ready to take another shot at the NBA title. However, there were few factors that contributed to their fall. Let's examine it.
1. Not signing James Harden - Early in the season, the Thunder's questionable move in not getting Harden probably had caused them something. Not evident in the regular season as the Thunder played well by winning 60 games. Though Kevin Martin took the shoes of Harden in the regular season, the playoff was not a perfect fit for the Thunder.
2. Russell Westbrook injury - This can be the biggest of all the reasons. The competitiveness of the Thunder was none existent when Westbrook was sidelined with injury that the defense of the opponents concentrated on Durant. Losing the No 2 option was hard to fill in for the Thunder.
3. Kevin Durant's clutchness - How about Kevin Durant's missing many shots in the fourth quarters of the last two games? What if he converted most of his shots? Durant has to learn to be clutch in the future for his team to win close games. It's a learning process. LeBron James took some time until last year to score under the pressure.
4. Much improved Grizzlies - Never discount Grizzlies in the picture of the fall of the Thunder. Memphis overpowered the LA Clippers in the first round and it was not a fluke. Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph dominated the Thunder. In short other teams like the Grizzlies have caught on the Thunder.
Next year is another journey for the Oklahoma City Thunder. Probably additional players to spice up the roster?
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Ginebra vs Alaska: PBA Commisioners Cup Finals 2013, Preview and Results
All set for the PBA Commissioners Cup 2013 as Barangay Ginebra and Alaska Aces collide in Game 1 Wednesday night. It is considered to be a perfect series that is dwindled into a best-of-five.
Ginebra entered into the Finals by overpowering Talk N Text in Game Five of the series. Coach Al Francis Chua did stir up the fighting spirits of the Kings as they climbed the big mountain against Norman Black's team. Showing resiliency in times of trouble, the Ginebra Kings will have to be relying on Kirby Raymundo and the shooting power of Jayjay Helterbrand without star Mark Caguioa.
The Kings accepted already the fact that they can play to the high degree without Caguioa as they found out that they can increase the level of the energy through import Vernon Macklin and LA Tenorio. Furthermore, the Kings can maintain a significant lead and they can rally if they are pushed into a big deficit.
On the other hand, Alaska is not a pushover team. With Cyrus Baguio and Sonny Thoss playing significantly comfortable, the Aces can distance themselves early in the game. Also, the defensive game of Calvin Abueva will be important in toppling the offense of Helterbrand.
Alaska import Rob Dozier will have to do the scoring and the rebounding to extend his help for the Aces to be formidable in Game One. More importantly, his defense is needed to nullify whatever the deficiency of his teammates.
I don't know who will win Game 1, it's a toss up. I will provide you the Ginebra vs Alaska results here.
Sunday, May 12, 2013
What if the Denver Broncos never collapsed against the Baltimore Ravens? They should have probably be th Super Bowl champions. This is just speculation of what should have occurred but let's forget the past and start the new season with a bright perspective.
With the best defense and probably the quarterback that the Broncos had in 2012, duplication will not be easy at all. Duplication in a sense that the Broncos will be on top of the AFC once more. However, the goal of the Broncos is to be in the Super Bowl and that winning the AFC title is not the peak of the dream at all but only part.
Denver Broncos will host the Baltimore Ravens in the Thursday Night Game on September 5, 2013. This is a rematch of their divisional playoff game that became the stepping stone of the Ravens to be in the AFC Championship. Broncos have something in their minds and that is to overpower the Baltimore Ravens. This is a match in which the two teams press on to be better as the season progresses.
Week Two, the Peyton Manning faces his brother Eli Manning at the Metlife Stadium. It will be interesting to see the brothers once more executing and doing the damage against the defenses of their respective ballclubs. This will draw plenty of fans who want to see the Manning brothers at their best.
After two tough games, the Denver Broncos will meet the Oakland Raiders at home. There's not much expected for the Raiders except for an improvement. Broncos will be tested as the defense will begin to improve.
Week 5 against the Dallas Cowboys will be a threat for the Broncos as well as Week 7 at the Indianapolis Colts. Week 8 also will extremely difficult as they face the Redskins.
Week 10 will be the most anticipated as they travel to New England. The Manning-Brady rivalry will be the center of conversations. This is a much watch game as the superpowers of the AFC collide.
2013 Denver Broncos scheDule
(home games in caps; all times local at site of game)
Wk. Day Date Opponent Site Time TV
1 Thu. Aug. 8 at San Francisco Candlestick Park 6 p.m. PDT KUSA-TV
2 Sat. Aug. 17 at Seattle Qwest Field 7 p.m. PDT KUSA-TV
3 Sat. Aug. 24 ST. LOUIS Sports Authority Field at Mile High 6 p.m. MDT CBS (NTL)
4 Thu. Aug. 29 ARIZONA Sports Authority Field at Mile High 7 p.m. MDT KUSA-TV
Wk. Day Date Opponent Site Time TV
1 Thu. Sept. 5 BALTIMORE Sports Authority Field at Mile High 6:30 p.m. MDT NBC (NTL)
2 Sun. Sept. 15 at N.Y. Giants MetLife Stadium 4:25 p.m. EDT CBS
3 Mon. Sept. 23 OAKLAND Sports Authority Field at Mile High 6:40 p.m. MDT ESPN (NTL)
4 Sun. Sept. 29 PHILADELPHIA Sports Authority Field at Mile High 2:25 p.m. MDT FOX
5 Sun. Oct. 6 at Dallas Cowboys Stadium 3:25 p.m. CDT CBS
6 Sun. Oct. 13 JACKSONVILLE Sports Authority Field at Mile High 2:05 p.m. MDT CBS
7 Sun. Oct. 20 at Indianapolis Lucas Oil Stadium 8:30 p.m. EDT NBC (NTL)
8 Sun. Oct. 27 WASHINGTON Sports Authority Field at Mile High 2:25 p.m. MDT FOX
10 Sun. Nov. 10 at San Diego Qualcomm Stadium 1:25 p.m. PST CBS
11 Sun. Nov. 17 KANSAS CITY Sports Authority Field at Mile High 2:05 p.m. MST CBS*
12 Sun. Nov. 24 at New England Gillette Stadium 8:30 p.m. EST NBC (NTL)
13 Sun. Dec. 1 at Kansas City Arrowhead Stadium 12 p.m. CST CBS*
14 Sun. Dec. 8 TENNESSEE Sports Authority Field at Mile High 2:05 p.m. MST CBS*
15 Thu. Dec. 12 SAN DIEGO Sports Authority Field at Mile High 6:25 p.m. MST NFLN (NTL)
16 Sun. Dec. 22 at Houston Reliant Stadium 12 p.m. CST CBS*
17 Sun. Dec. 29 at Oakland O.co Coliseum 1:25 p.m. PST CBS*
Thursday, May 9, 2013
Quarterback Tom Brady seeks his fourth ring while age catches on him. As the key piece of the New England Patriots roster, Brady needs to defy his detractors as well as the New England Patriots 2013 schedule which is a daunting task.
With weak division rivals except of course against the New York Jets, expect again for the Patriots to be in the playoffs as long as Brady is on the roster. The presence of Brady will be the determining factor for the Patriots to stay competitive as he excels arguably the best quarterback of all time.
Patriots opening regular season game is on the road against the Buffalo Bills on September 8, 2013. Without a doubt, the Patriots are expected to beat the Bills unless there's that upgrade for Buffalo. A tough quick turnaround as they will be going home to play Thursday night September 12 against the New York Jets. Thursday to Sunday is not a big distance for the old legs of the Patriots to have a chance against the Jets though playing at home will help the Patriots.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers will post a threat against the Patriots on September 22, a 10 day rest for the Brady-led team. A Sunday Night Game against the Atlanta Falcons is the biggest challenge for the Patriots on the road. This is the time to see Matt Ryan against Brady. This is also a defining moment for the Patriots to face a team that was so strong in the NFC last season.
In October, the Patriots will open up against the Bengals on the road. Cincinnati can beat the Patriots in so many ways. October 13 will be against the New Orleans Saints. This is a game to see the Patriots offense against the offense of the Saints also. It will be a shootout between Brady and Drew Brees. A second game against the New York Jets this time on October 20, 2013. Adjustments will be made with just a month after their first encounter. The Patriots finish the month of October against the Miami Dolphins.
November is a challenging month for the Patriots. The hungry Pittsburgh Steelers visit the Patriots. Ben Roethlisberger wants to win in New England. This could be critical game for the Patriots especially on how much they improve defensively. A Bye Week then they will travel to Carolina. This could be a defeat for the Patriots. After Carolina, then they have to host the Denver Broncos on Sunday Night Game which showcase the old rivalry of Peyton Manning and Brady.
The Patriots have a decisive December Schedule but only the Baltimore Ravens on December 22 will be of the measuring stick going to the playoffs. By then the Patriots has already secured another AFC North Title.
2013 PATRIOTS PRESEASON SCHEDULE
Date Opponent Time TV Coverage
Friday, Aug. 9 at Philadelphia Eagles 7:30 p.m. ET Patriots Preseason Network
Friday, Aug. 16 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 8:00 p.m. ET FOX
Thursday, Aug. 22 at Detroit Lions 7:30 p.m. ET Patriots Preseason Network
Thursday, Aug. 29 New York Giants 7:30 p.m. ET Patriots Preseason Network
2013 PATRIOTS REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE
Date Opponent Time TV Coverage
Sunday, Sept. 8 at Buffalo Bills 1:00 p.m. ET CBS
Thursday, Sept. 12 New York Jets 8:25 p.m. ET NFL Network
Sunday, Sept. 22 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1:00 p.m. ET FOX
Sunday, Sept 29 at Atlanta Falcons 8:30 p.m. ET NBC
Sunday, Oct. 6 at Cincinnati Bengals 1:00 p.m. ET CBS
Sunday, Oct. 13 New Orleans Saints 4:25 p.m. ET FOX
Sunday, Oct. 20 at New York Jets 1:00 p.m. ET CBS
Sunday, Oct. 27 Miami Dolphins 1:00 p.m. ET CBS
Sunday, Nov. 3 Pittsburgh Steelers 4:25 p.m. ET CBS
Sunday, Nov. 10 BYE WEEK
Monday, Nov. 18 at Carolina Panthers 8:40 p.m. ET ESPN
Sunday, Nov. 24 Denver Broncos 8:30 p.m. ET NBC*
Sunday, Dec. 1 at Houston Texans 4:25 p.m. ET CBS*
Sunday, Dec. 8 Cleveland Browns 1:00 p.m. ET CBS*
Sunday, Dec. 15 at Miami Dolphins 1:00 p.m. ET CBS*
Sunday, Dec. 22 at Baltimore Ravens 8:30 p.m. ET NBC*
Sunday, Dec. 29 Buffalo Bills 1:00 p.m. ET CBS*
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Kevin Garnett pulled off one of his big games as he had 16 points and 18 rebounds for the Boston Celtics to beat New York Knicks, 92-86, in the best-of-seven first round series in the Eastern Conference.
The series will be shifted back to Boston in Game 6 as the Celtics can tie it after losing the first three games. Garnett displayed power and aggression as he also added five assists to be the hinge of the team in extending the series. Garnett is not too old to dominate once again by controlling the boards first to portray an all-around performance.
Paul Pierce added 16 points while Brandon Bass had 17 points to compliment the dominance of Garnett. Jeff Green had 18 points also while Jason Terry scored 17 points coming off from the bench. A balance offensive attacks by the Celtics while the defense was too tough for Carmelo to score only 22 points.
Aside from Carmelo, Raymond Felton had 21 points and six assists while JR Smith had 14 points. Though Tyson Chandler grabbed 11 rebounds, his defense on Garnett was missing especially in the second half. Iman Shumpert added 12 points and six rebounds for the Knicks to keep the game close.
What a miss opportunity for the Knicks who were supposed to close out the series at home. They will have to suffer the turmoil of playing in Boston in Game 6.
The game was filled with defense and that the Celtics prevailed in that arena. Coach Doc Rivers made sure that Anthony would not get his 30's.
The Los Angeles Lakers are declining as the star players are aging. For three consecutive years, the Lakers exited in a 0-4 fashion, this time in the first r ound. It's not helping for the Lakers as Kobe Bryant is in the latter part of his career and the experiment of acquiring Steve Nash and Dwight Howard to enchance the chances didn't work at all.
Let's take first the problem of the Lakers with Nash and Howard season.
1. Early injury for Howard - Dwight Howard didn't play in the preaseason and that the Lakers were into a bad start. It took the second half for Howard to find his place.
2. The acquisition of Mike D'Antoni - Not a wise decision for the Lakers management. D'Antoni was not the right person to coach a team with caliber as the roster of the Lakers.
3. Injury of Steve Nash, Pau Gasol, and Metta World Peace - Unfathomable but the age factor caught on the Lakers.
4. Pau Gasol's role - Never forget about Gasol's desire to be a part of this team as D'Antoni wanted run-and-gone offense at one time.
5. Kobe Bryant injury - This was big. If he was healthy, the Lakers should have fough strong against the San Antonio Spurs.
Let's think about what the Lakers can do:
1. Keep Dwight Howard - He is the future of this team and he must be kept. It is up to Mitch Kupchak to persuade Howard to play again not for a year but for five years worth $118 million.
2. Rehire Phil Jackson - Who can handle a star like Howard but Phil Jackson. Probably the Lakers will hire Jackson first so that Howard will stay. D'Antoni will not lead the Lakers into a championship.
3. Get some young players - The roster is old and that new players must be injected. Think about the Spurs, they have new players for Duncan to rest.
4. What to do with Kobe Bryant? - Kobe's time with the Lakers is over. Give up Kobe for a new blood of players to help Howard for the Lakers. Not a great suggestion but Howard will not flourish if Kobe is the leader.