Oklahoma

Overturning Roe v. Wade is necessary to energize abortion advocates to fight against conservative moves that continue to chip away at abortion protections across the U.S., an activist argued Wednesday.

“[I]f Roe v. Wades fate really comes before the Supreme Court, then for the first time in decades, the abortion rights movement will understand that the threat it is facing is not theoretical, and supporters will stop fighting like it is,” Robin Marty wrote in a Wednesday op-ed published in Politico Magazine.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Roe v. Wade that women have a constitutional right to an abortion under the 14th Amendment on Jan. 22, 1973. The ruling extended the right to abort up to the point of fetal “viability,” which physicians generally agree sits around 24 weeks. The term, however, continues to foster debate as neonatal care advances.

Following the court’s ruling, abortion advocates have failed to effectively challenge moves stripping away abortion protections at the state level, according to Marty.

“Democrats have done little to stem the tide of legislation that has winnowed away access to abortion across the country, even while it has remained technically legal,” Marty wrote, citing more than 400 laws passed by state legislatures since 2011, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a research and policy organization on reproductive health and rights.

Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico, Oklahoma, West Virginia and Wisconsin have laws banning abortion that would become effective if Roe v. Wade is overturned, according to the Guttmacher Institute. Louisiana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Mississippi also have constitutional statutes that would make abortion illegal should the court overturn Roe v. Wade.

Because abortion is protected at the federal level, Americans have largely come to regard abortion as a “second-tier political issue,” according to Marty. “If Roe v. Wade is overturned, the decision will finally force the ideological zeal typical of a political opposition — the force that has long powered the anti-abortion movement — onto the abortion rights movement. And liberal complacency on the issue of abortion could end for good,” Marty wrote. (RELATED: Supreme Court Legalized Abortion 46 Years Ago. Here’s A Look At Abortion Across The US)

An abortion rights activist holds up a sign as marchers take part in the 46th annual March for Life in Washington, U.S., Jan. 18, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

Liberal complacency has permitted restrictions on abortion access to disproportionately affect marginalized communities where more privileged women have suffered, according to Marty.

“If Roe is overturned in the United States, our current phase of post-Roecomplacency will be seen not as a rational response to an era of secure reproductive rights,” Marty wrote.

She is the author of “Handbook for a Post-Roe America.”

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Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

Quarterback Kyler Murray met Tuesday with the Arizona Cardinals.

According to Aaron Wilson, the team paid the Oklahoma Heisman winner a visit in Norman. The Cardinals were represented by head coach Kliff Kingsbury and general manager Steve Keim.

For those hoping speculation would die down about Murray going to the Cardinals, I wouldn’t count on it at all. Everything seems to point to Arizona taking him first overall, and they absolutely should.

The organization made a bold move by hiring Kingsbury after he was fired by Texas Tech. If you’re going to go bold, then you have to go all the way. (RELATED: Kyler Murray Measures In At Over 5’10” At The Combine)

There’s no quarterback in the draft better for the system he’s going to run than Murray. The dual-threat quarterback is lightning quick, has a big arm and is extremely elusive. The former college star is almost like a video game-created character.

The Cardinals should pull the trigger on the pick, and the fact they traveled to Norman is just the latest indication that’s the plan.

We’ll all find out when the first round of the NFL draft gets underway April 25. My money is all on Murray teaming up with Kingsbury and the Cardinals.

Follow David Hookstead on Twitter

Source: The Daily Caller

FILE PHOTO: New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft arrives for the 89th Academy Awards Oscars Vanity Fair Party in Beverly Hills
FILE PHOTO: New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft arrives for the 89th Academy Awards Oscars Vanity Fair Party in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., February 26, 2017. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok/File Photo

March 20, 2019

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft can have the solicitation of prostitution charges in Florida against him dropped, but there’s a catch.

The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that prosecutors have offered to defer prosecution for Kraft and the two dozen other men arrested in the case, but any defendant who accepts the offer must admit that there is enough evidence to lead to a conviction at trial.

Additionally, the defendant must complete an education course about prostitution, perform 100 hours of community service, be tested for sexually transmitted diseases and pay court costs, per the report.

Kraft entered a not guilty plea in late February after being charged with two misdemeanor counts of soliciting prostitution at a day spa in Jupiter, Fla. The 77-year-old billionaire is alleged to have twice visited the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in January and received sex acts in exchange for money both times.

–In an interview with Sports Illustrated, running back Le’Veon Bell said he never intended to sit out the entire 2018 season.

Bell, who recently signed with the New York Jets as a free agent, told the outlet that his original plan was to miss only Week 1 of last season. But the running back had a change of mind as events played out with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Once he realized the Steelers could again put the franchise tag on him following the season, Bell continued to sit out, and never joined the team. He became a free agent after the season and received a four-year, $52.5 million deal from the Jets.

–Coveted quarterback Kyler Murray met with Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim and coach Kliff Kingsbury near the Oklahoma campus, the Houston Chronicle reported.

The Cardinals own the No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft and the Oklahoma product and Heisman Trophy winner is under heavy consideration as he is viewed as a solid fit for first-year coach Kingsbury’s offense.

Arizona took quarterback Josh Rosen 10th overall in last year’s draft but the team’s actions involving Murray may display a willingness to move on from Rosen.

–Tempted to join his brother with the Patriots, tight end Martellus Bennett said he will instead remain retired to focus on his creative work.

Michael Bennett was acquired by the Patriots from the Philadelphia Eagles earlier this month, sparking speculation the defensive lineman might soon be joined by his 32-year-old brother, who retired after being released by New England last offseason.

–The Carolina Panthers signed defensive end Bruce Irvin to a one-year contract reportedly worth up to $5 million in an effort to boost their pass rush after the retirement of Julius Peppers. The seven-year pro has 43.5 sacks, 277 tackles, 15 forced fumbles and three interceptions.

–The Dallas Cowboys and wide receiver Randall Cobb agreed to terms on a one-year deal, the team announced. The deal is worth $5 million, according to the NFL Network. Cobb, 28, has been with the Green Bay Packers since they drafted him in the second round in 2011. He missed seven games last season due to concussion and hamstring injuries and caught just 38 passes for 383 yards and two touchdowns.

–Defensive end Robert Quinn visited the Cowboys as a precursor to a potential swap with the Miami Dolphins, but reportedly left town without a deal pending. The Dolphins are willing to pay part of Quinn’s 2019 salary to help facilitate a trade of the pass rusher, according to NFL Network.

–Kentucky tight end C.J. Conrad has been cleared for pre-draft workouts after he had to leave the NFL Scouting Combine earlier this month when a heart issue was found during his physical. Prior to the combine, most outlets had pegged him as a late-round prospect.

–Kicker Dan Bailey re-signed with the Minnesota Vikings, agreeing to a one-year deal with a base value of $1 million, per reports. … The Patriots have reportedly re-signed punter Ryan Allen to a one-year deal. … The Detroit Lions have signed restricted free agent running back Malcolm Brown to an offer sheet, which the Los Angeles Rams have until Monday to match, according to multiple reports.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

NBA: Denver Nuggets at Boston Celtics
Mar 18, 2019; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Celtics guard Kyrie Irving (11) drives between Denver Nuggets guard Will Barton (5) and center Nikola Jokic (15) during the second half at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

March 19, 2019

Nikola Jokic had 21 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists, and the Denver Nuggets beat the host Boston Celtics 114-105 on Monday night to clinch a playoff berth.

Will Barton had 20 points, Gary Harris added 16 and Paul Millsap had 12 points and 11 rebounds for Denver, which is back in the postseason for the first time since 2013.

The Nuggets (47-22) swept the season series from Boston and surpassed their win total from last season with 13 games to go. Denver needs just 10 wins to match the franchise record for a season set in 2012-13.

Kyrie Irving led the Celtics with a game-high 30 points, and Al Horford scored 20. Boston played without Gordon Hayward, who left the Saturday game against the Atlanta Hawks with a neck strain.

Spurs 111, Warriors 105

DeMar DeRozan scored 26 points, and LaMarcus Aldridge added 23 points and 13 rebounds as San Antonio beat visiting Golden State for its ninth win in a row.

The victory was the Spurs’ 11th straight at home and guaranteed San Antonio (42-29) its NBA-record 22nd consecutive winning season.

Rudy Gay added 17 points for the Spurs. Stephen Curry led the Warriors with 25 points, and Kevin Durant tallied 24 in his return to the lineup after missing the past two games with a sprained ankle.

Pelicans 129, Mavericks 124 (OT)

Dirk Nowitzki reached a milestone, but his Dallas teammates failed to make it a celebratory evening, blowing a four-point lead in the final 19.1 seconds of regulation as visiting New Orleans pulled out the overtime victory.

Nowitzki made his first two shots, both trademark jumpers, in the opening four minutes to surpass Wilt Chamberlain as the NBA’s sixth-leading all-time scorer.

Julius Randle finished with a game-high 30 points for New Orleans, and Elfrid Payton recorded his fifth consecutive triple-double with 19 points (11 coming in the fourth quarter and overtime), 11 assists and 10 rebounds. Luka Doncic notched a triple-double for the Mavericks with 29 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists.

Heat 116, Thunder 107

Goran Dragic hit six 3-pointers and scored 26 points off the bench to lead visiting Miami, and Dwyane Wade scored 25 in his final game at Oklahoma City.

James Johnson also added 14 points as Miami’s reserves outscored Oklahoma City’s 67-10. Dragic had 11 assists. Kelly Olynyk contributed 18 points and nine rebounds to help the Heat win for the seventh time in nine games.

Oklahoma City was playing without Russell Westbrook, who was suspended after picking up his 16th technical foul of the season in a Saturday loss to the Golden State Warriors. Paul George led the Thunder with 31 points, and he grabbed nine rebounds.

Jazz 116, Wizards 95

Rudy Gobert had 14 points and 14 rebounds, and visiting Utah beat Washington. Gobert, the reigning Western Conference Player of the Week, was 6 of 6 from the field and made 2 of 3 free throws.

Donovan Mitchell scored 19 points and Jae Crowder added 18 for the Jazz. Ricky Rubio had 10 assists.

Jabari Parker led Washington with 19 points, and Bradley Beal, the Eastern Conference Player of the Week, added 15 on 4-of-12 shooting.

Raptors 128, Knicks 92

Jeremy Lin scored 20 points off the bench, Pascal Siakam added 19 points and eight rebounds, and Toronto hammered visiting New York.

Kyle Lowry added 15 points and eight assists for the Raptors before leaving the game with an ankle injury during the third quarter. He did not return to action. Fred VanVleet scored 13 points and handed out 12 assists for the Raptors, who have won all three meetings with the Knicks so far this season.

Allonzo Trier scored 22 points for the Knicks while Kevin Knox added 12 points and Damyean Dotson added 11. New York lost for the ninth time in 10 games.

Cavaliers 126, Pistons 119

Rookie Collin Sexton poured in 27 points, including a go-ahead 3-pointer with less than two minutes left, and Cleveland beat visiting Detroit. Cedi Osman supplied 21 points and six assists for the Cavaliers, who had seven players score in double figures.

Brandon Knight contributed 16 points, four rebounds and five assists, while Nik Stauskas led the Cleveland bench with 17 points. Marquese Chriss added a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Wayne Ellington scored 25 points to lead the Pistons, while Andre Drummond had 21 points and 21 rebounds. Pistons All-Star Blake Griffin sat out for just the third time this season.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: NFL: NFL Honors-Red Carpet
FILE PHOTO: Feb 2, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; Tyreek Hill during red carpet arrivals for the NFL Honors show at the Fox Theatre. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports – 12098140

March 19, 2019

The investigation into allegations of battery against Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill remains open.

Steve Howe, the district attorney in Johnson County, Kan., acknowledged in a written statement Monday that his office “has received numerous requests for information” about the status of the investigation into Hill but could provide no additional details.

“While we understand the public’s concern, the investigation is still ongoing. It would be irresponsible to make definitive ‘official’ statements before the investigation is complete,” according to the statement.

The 25-year-old Hill has not been charged with any crimes.

Hill is under investigation for an alleged battery incident involving a juvenile, according to multiple published reports. The Kansas City Star reported that Hill’s 3-year-old son suffered a broken arm in the incident.

The report from police in Overland Park, Kan., where Hill lives, is dated March 14. It is unclear if the incident occurred that day.

Overland Park police also responded to the same address on March 5 to investigate a report of child abuse or neglect. Hill’s name is listed on the report.

His fiancee, Crystal Espinal, is listed on the March 14 report under the category of “others involved.” The Star reported that Espinal is pregnant with twins and that she is the mother of the 3-year-old whose arm was broken.

Hill reportedly choked and punched Espinal when she was pregnant in December 2014. Hill was arrested and dismissed from the Oklahoma State football team.

Hill later pleaded guilty to domestic assault and battery by strangulation and received three years’ probation.

The Chiefs issued the following statement last week regarding Hill:

“The club is aware of the investigation involving Tyreek Hill,” the Chiefs said in a statement to The Kansas City Star. “We’re in the process of gathering information and have been in contact with the league and local authorities. We’ll have no further comment at this time.”

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

NBA: Portland Trail Blazers at San Antonio Spurs
Mar 16, 2019; San Antonio, TX, USA; Portland Trail Blazers shooting guard CJ McCollum (3) drives for the basket between San Antonio Spurs power forward LaMarcus Aldridge (12) and DeMar DeRozan (right) during the first half at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

March 17, 2019

DeMar DeRozan’s 21 points led seven San Antonio players in double figures as the Spurs made all the big plays in the fourth quarter to beat the visiting Portland Trail Blazers 108-103 on Saturday for their eighth straight victory.

The sixth-place Spurs are a season-best 12 games over .500 and within a game and a half of Portland for fourth place in the Western Conference standings.

Rudy Gay and Derrick White added 13 points each for San Antonio, with LaMarcus Aldridge and Patty Mills scoring 12 points each. DeRozan and Aldridge had eight rebounds apiece, Gay had seven, and Jakob Poeltl blocked five shots.

Portland’s Damian Lillard led all scorers with 34 points, and Jusuf Nurkic added 24 points and 16 rebounds. CJ McCollum, who finished with 10 points, left in the third quarter with an apparent left knee injury during a drive to the basket.

Warriors 110, Thunder 88

Stephen Curry scored 33 points and Klay Thompson added 23 as Golden State scored 40 points in the first quarter in defeating host Oklahoma City.

DeMarcus Cousins added 12 points, eight rebounds and six assists for the Warriors, who also got eight rebounds and six assists from Draymond Green.

Paul George led Oklahoma City with 29 points but hit only 9 of 25 shots overall. Dennis Schroder added 15 points off the bench, and Russell Westbrook shot only 2 of 16 in finishing with seven points.

Nuggets 102, Pacers 100

Paul Millsap hit a running layup with seven seconds left as host Denver edged Indiana to stay a game behind Golden State for the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference.

Millsap finished with 15 points and 13 rebounds. Nikola Jokic scored 26 points before being ejected for arguing a foul call on a loose ball play. Jamal Murray and Will Barton scored 17 points each for Denver.

Thaddeus Young had 18 points and 10 rebounds, Darren Collison scored 17 points and Domantas Sabonis and Bojan Bogdanovic finished with 16 each for the Pacers.

Jazz 114, Nets 98

Rudy Gobert totaled 23 points, 17 rebounds and three blocked shots, and Utah took control by early in the second quarter to defeat Brooklyn in Salt Lake City.

Gobert recorded his 55th double-double. He shot 9 of 12 from the floor and had six more dunks, increasing his league-leading total to 249. Donovan Mitchell led Utah with 24 points and added six rebounds and four assists.

Spencer Dinwiddie scored 22 points off the bench, but the Nets dropped to 0-2 to start a season-high, seven-game road trip. D’Angelo Russell added 20 points but shot 8 of 25 for Brooklyn.

Celtics 129, Hawks 120

Kyrie Irving scored 30 points and Jaylen Brown added 23, with two key baskets in a fourth-quarter stretch, as host Boston held off Atlanta to win for the fifth time in its past six games.

Irving fell just short of his second straight triple-double with 11 rebounds and nine assists. Boston also got 19 points — four in the crucial fourth-quarter run — and 11 rebounds from Marcus Morris while Jayson Tatum had 18 points and eight rebounds. Marcus Smart scored 16 points.

Atlanta was led by Trae Young, who had 26 points, including 5-for-8 shooting on 3-pointers, and John Collins, who had 20 points and 11 rebounds.

Wizards 135, Grizzlies 128

Bradley Beal led six players in double figures with 40 points — his second straight night reaching 40 — as host Washington defeated Memphis.

Jabari Parker had 20 points and 11 rebounds, and Bobby Portis scored 18 points as Washington, 11th in the Eastern Conference, moved to within three games of eighth-place Miami.

Mike Conley had 28 points and 12 assists for Memphis. Jonas Valanciunas amassed 22 points, and Avery Bradley scored 21.

Mavericks 121, Cavaliers 116

Tim Hardaway Jr. led seven players in double figures with 22 points as host Dallas ran off to a big lead before holding on to beat Cleveland and end a seven-game losing streak.

Maxi Kleber finished with 18 points and 12 rebounds for the Mavericks, and Jalen Brunson and Dwight Powell added 16 points apiece. Dirk Nowitzki contributed 14 points and six rebounds.

Rookie Collin Sexton scored a game-high 28 points, and Kevin Love and Cedi Osman added 22 apiece. Love also had 12 rebounds and four assists.

Suns 138, Pelicans 136 (OT)

Phoenix scored five points in the final 2.2 seconds of overtime, helped along when host New Orleans drew a technical foul for calling a timeout when it had none remaining. Devin Booker led the Suns with 40 points and 13 assists, and Kelly Oubre Jr. had 32 points.

The Pelicans lost their sixth straight despite getting a New Orleans-record fourth consecutive triple-double from Elfrid Payton. The former Suns point guard finished with 16 points, 13 rebounds and a career-high 16 assists, tying the assist mark he set one night earlier against Portland.

Three of his teammates had double-doubles. Julius Randle finished with 21 points and 11 rebounds, Anthony Davis had 15 points and 11 rebounds, and Cheick Diallo came off the bench to add 10 points and 10 rebounds.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

NBA: Milwaukee Bucks at Los Angeles Lakers
Mar 1, 2019; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram (14) dribbles the ball as Milwaukee Bucks guard Eric Bledsoe (6) defends during the first quarter at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

March 17, 2019

Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram had surgery on his right arm Saturday and is expected to be ready by the start of the 2019-20 season, the team announced.

Ingram underwent thoracic outlet decompression surgery, performed by Dr. Hugh Gelabert at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.

Earlier this month, Ingram, 21, was diagnosed with deep venous thrombosis, which involved a blood clot that caused shoulder pain. After the diagnosis, the Lakers announced he would be out the rest of the season.

Ingram, in his third NBA season, averaged 18.3 points, 5.1 rebounds and 3.0 assists in 33.8 minutes per game in 52 contests.

–Golden State star Kevin Durant was held out of the lineup at Oklahoma City, missing his second straight game with an injured right ankle.

Coach Steve Kerr told ESPN that Durant “most likely” would return for Monday’s game at San Antonio.

Durant, 30, played nine seasons for Seattle/Oklahoma City before signing with the Warriors as a free agent in 2016. He is averaging 27.4 points, 6.7 rebounds and 5.7 assists per game this season.

–The top-seeded United States squad will open its defense of its FIBA World Cup championship this summer against the Czech Republic.

The draw for the 32-team tournament was held in Shenzhen, China. The United States will also face Turkey and Japan in Group E.

The FIBA World Cup will be held Aug. 31 to Sept. 15, with play in eight cities across China. The United States, coached this year by Gregg Popovich, is the two-time defending champion.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill is being investigated for two suspected incidents of child abuse in his home.

The police were called to Hill’s house on Thursday. They were also called to the same address earlier this month, according to KCTV. They also reported that Hill’s name was not mentioned in their report, but his fiancee, Crystal Espinal, is mentioned.

The Chiefs said in a statement to the Kansas City Star, “The club is aware of the investigation involving Tyreek Hill. We’re in the process of gathering information and have been in contact with the league and local authorities. We’ll have no further comment at this time.”

Hill, 25, was arrested in December 2014 for domestic violence after he punched Espinal, 24, in the face and stomach back when she was pregnant. He pleaded guilty to domestic abuse and received three years of probation.

Tyreek Hill #10 of the Kansas City Chiefs ... (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images)

Tyreek Hill #10 of the Kansas City Chiefs … (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images)

Earlier this month, it was reported that the Chiefs and Hill were working on a new “record” contract. He was dismissed from Oklahoma State University’s football program after the arrest.

Hill is the second Chiefs player to get face legal trouble this year. The team’s former running back Kareem Hunt was released from the team in November after a video emerged of him kicking and shoving a woman in a Cleveland area hotel. (RELEASED: Kareem Hunt Signs With The Cleveland Browns)

Hunt was signed by the Cleveland Browns and suspended for the first eight games of the season on Friday.

Follow Mike on Twitter

Source: The Daily Caller

NBA: Sacramento Kings at Boston Celtics
Mar 14, 2019; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Celtics guard Kyrie Irving (11) takes a free throw during the second half against the Sacramento Kings at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

March 15, 2019

Kyrie Irving scored six of his team-high 31 points during a fourth-quarter spurt that allowed the Boston Celtics to build a lead they were able to retain en route to a 126-120 victory over the visiting Sacramento Kings on Thursday night.

After trailing for much of the first three quarters, the Celtics led just 104-103 following a Willie Cauley-Stein dunk for Sacramento with 6:20 to go. Irving countered immediately with a floater and, after a three-point play by Marcus Morris, added two jumpers in a 9-0 flurry that opened a 113-103 advantage with 4:33 remaining.

Irving wound up with his second career triple-double, complementing his 31 points with 10 rebounds and a game-high 12 assists. His only previous triple-double came for Cleveland against Utah in February 2014.

Sacramento’s Buddy Hield led all scorers with 34 points, connecting on 6 of 10 3-point attempts. His Kings teammates, however, made just 5 of 24 3-point shots.

Raptors 111, Lakers 98

Kawhi Leonard scored 25 points, grabbed eight rebounds and added four assists as Toronto defeated visiting Los Angeles.

Norman Powell added 20 points and eight rebounds for the Raptors, who have won their past nine games against the Lakers dating to 2015. Pascal Siakam scored 16 points, and Marc Gasol contributed 15 points for Toronto.

LeBron James led the Lakers with 29 points. Alex Caruso added 16 points, Rajon Rondo had 13 points and eight assists and JaVale McGee contributed nine points and nine rebounds.

Pacers 108, Thunder 106

Wesley Matthews’ tip-in with 1.8 seconds left lifted Indiana over host Oklahoma City.

Indiana ended the game on a 23-10 run to finish off a big comeback. Domantas Sabonis led the Pacers with 26 points, and Bojan Bogdanovic added 23.

Russell Westbrook had a chance to win the game for the Thunder in the last second, but his 3-pointer from the top of the key hit the front of the rim and bounced away. Westbrook finished with 19 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists for his second consecutive triple-double, and Paul George finished with a game-high 36 points.

Magic 120, Cavaliers 91

Aaron Gordon had 21 points as Orlando got a much-needed blowout against visiting Cleveland.

Nikola Vucevic had 19 points and 11 rebounds, and D.J. Augustin had 20 points and seven assists for the Magic. The win came at an important time for Orlando, which had dropped four of its last five games.

Collin Sexton led the Cavaliers with 23 points, and Jordan Clarkson added 15 points off the bench.

Jazz 120, Timberwolves 100

Donovan Mitchell scored 24 points and dished out six assists to lead Utah past Minnesota at Salt Lake City.

Rudy Gobert and Derrick Favors each finished with double-doubles for the Jazz. Favors had 17 points and 11 rebounds. Gobert tallied 10 points and 13 boards. Jae Crowder added 18 points off the bench.

Karl-Anthony Towns scored 26 points and collected 12 rebounds before fouling out with 4:13 left. Andrew Wiggins added 14 points. Tyus Jones chipped in 12 points and nine assists.

Nuggets 100, Mavericks 99

Nikola Jokic drained a 9-foot leaner as time expired, and host Denver rallied to beat Dallas.

Jokic one-upped Dallas rookie Luka Doncic, whose dunk with 5.8 seconds left gave Dallas a one-point lead. But Denver called timeout, then got the ball to Jokic, and he hit a floater around Dwight Powell.

Jokic finished with 11 points, 14 rebounds and eight assists, and Paul Millsap had a season-high 33 points for Denver. Doncic had 24 points and Jalen Brunson scored 20 for the tired Mavericks, who didn’t arrive in Denver until 9 a.m. Thursday because of the blizzard slamming much of the middle of the country.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

NBA: Golden State Warriors at Houston Rockets
Mar 13, 2019; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) attempts to steal the ball from Golden State Warriors center DeMarcus Cousins (0) during the fourth quarter at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

March 14, 2019

DeMarcus Cousins served as a facilitator before thriving as a battering ram, leading the Golden State Warriors to a 106-104 victory over the host Houston Rockets on Wednesday.

Cousins posted season-highs in points (27) and assists (seven) to help the Warriors avert a four-game, season-series sweep by the Rockets.

The Warriors, 4-6 over their previous 10 games, snapped the Rockets’ season-best, nine-game winning streak by striking an effective inside-out balance. Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson combined for 54 points on 20-of-43 shooting, with Thompson tallying 30 and five 3-pointers.

James Harden paired 29 points with 10 assists but continued his recent struggles from deep, missing 10 of 12 3-point attempts. Clint Capela posted 13 points and 13 rebounds but struggled to defend Cousins on the block. Eric Gordon added 17 points for the Rockets.

Thunder 108, Nets 96

Paul George and Russell Westbrook combined for 56 points as Oklahoma City beat visiting Brooklyn after trailing by as much as 17 early in the second quarter and 10 early in the second half.

It was the second time this season the Thunder came from a double-digit deficit in the second half to beat the Nets and the 14th game this season that Oklahoma City won after trailing by at least 10.

Westbrook finished with 31 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists for his first triple-double since Feb. 28. Spencer Dinwiddie led the Nets with 25 points.

Wizards 100, Magic 90

Bradley Beal scored 23 points, Thomas Bryant added 21 points and 10 rebounds, and Washington defeated visiting Orlando.

Jabari Parker added 19 points and nine rebounds for Washington, which is 2-0 on a crucial five-game homestand. Wizards reserves, led by Bryant, Parker and Chasson Randle (13 points), scored 59 points.

Nikola Vucevic led the Magic with 20 points and 14 rebounds. D.J. Augustin scored 16 points, and Aaron Gordon and Jonathan Isaac had 13 each for the Magic, who have lost four of five.

Heat 108, Pistons 74

Justise Winslow led a balanced attack with 16 points, and host Miami scored the first 21 points of the second half to roll past Detroit.

The Heat outscored the Pistons 33-8 in the third quarter. It was Detroit’s lowest-scoring quarter since Nov. 21, 2012, when the Pistons had an eight-point quarter against Orlando.

Dion Waiters had 14 points, Hassan Whiteside and Josh Richardson scored 13 apiece, and Dwyane Wade tossed in 11 points off the bench for Miami. Blake Griffin led Detroit with 13 points. Former Heat guard Wayne Ellington added 11 points.

Jazz 114, Suns 97

Donovan Mitchell scored 26 points to help Utah beat host Phoenix. The Jazz have defeated the Suns by an average of 23 points while winning each of the past five meetings.

Rudy Gobert had 18 points and 20 rebounds for the Jazz, who outscored Phoenix 36-22 during the fourth quarter. Derrick Favors added 18 points, seven rebounds and seven assists.

Devin Booker scored 27 points for the Suns, who lost for just the third time in eight games. Kelly Oubre Jr. added 18 points.

Hawks 132, Grizzlies 111

Atlanta continued its hot play on offense, with John Collins, Trae Young and Alex Len combining for 69 points in a win over visiting Memphis. The Hawks entered the game as the NBA’s top offensive team since the All-Star Game, averaging 122.5 points.

Collins finished with 27 points on 11-for-17 shooting and grabbed 12 rebounds for his 28th double-double of the season. Young scored 22 points and had eight rebounds. Len came off the bench to add 20 points and eight rebounds.

CJ Miles sank eight 3-pointers and scored 33 points for the Grizzlies. Mike Conley added 20 points and seven assists.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

NBA: Brooklyn Nets at Oklahoma City Thunder
Mar 13, 2019; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder center Steven Adams (12) speaks with Oklaho Thunder guard Terrance Ferguson (23) and Thunder forward Paul George (13) during a stoppage in play in the second half at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

March 14, 2019

Paul George and Russell Westbrook combined for 56 points as the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the visiting Brooklyn Nets 108-96 on Wednesday night.

Oklahoma City trailed by as much as 17 early in the second quarter and 10 early in the second half. It was the second time this season the Thunder came from a double-digit deficit in the second half to beat the Nets and the 14th game this season that Oklahoma City won after trailing by at least 10.

The comeback wasn’t as dramatic as Dec. 5 in Brooklyn, when the Thunder outscored the Nets by 20 in the fourth quarter to win by two. This time, the comeback happened in the third quarter, when George snapped out of his recent slump with 12 points.

Westbrook finished with 31 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists for his first triple-double since Feb. 28. Spencer Dinwiddie led the Nets with 25 points.

Wizards 100, Magic 90

Bradley Beal scored 23 points, Thomas Bryant added 21 points and 10 rebounds, and Washington defeated visiting Orlando.

Jabari Parker added 19 points and nine rebounds for Washington, which is 2-0 on a crucial five-game homestand. Wizards reserves, led by Bryant, Parker and Chasson Randle (13 points), scored 59 points.

Nikola Vucevic led the Magic with 20 points and 14 rebounds. D.J. Augustin scored 16 points, and Aaron Gordon and Jonathan Isaac had 13 each for the Magic, who have lost four of five.

Heat 108, Pistons 74

Justise Winslow led a balanced attack with 16 points, and host Miami scored the first 21 points of the second half to roll past Detroit.

The Heat outscored the Pistons 33-8 in the third quarter. It was Detroit’s lowest-scoring quarter since Nov. 21, 2012, when the Pistons had an eight-point quarter against Orlando.

Dion Waiters had 14 points, Hassan Whiteside and Josh Richardson scored 13 apiece, and Dwyane Wade tossed in 11 points off the bench for Miami. Blake Griffin led Detroit with 13 points. Former Heat guard Wayne Ellington added 11 points.

Hawks 132, Grizzlies 111

Atlanta continued its hot play on offense, with John Collins, Trae Young and Alex Len combining for 69 points in a win over visiting Memphis. The Hawks entered the game as the NBA’s top offensive team since the All-Star Game, averaging 122.5 points.

Collins finished with 27 points on 11-for-17 shooting and grabbed 12 rebounds for his 28th double-double of the season. Young scored 22 points and had eight rebounds. Len came off the bench to add 20 points and eight rebounds.

CJ Miles sank eight 3-pointers and scored 33 points for the Grizzlies. Mike Conley added 20 points and seven assists.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry was born March 14, 1988 in Akron, Ohio.

Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors kisses his 2017-2018 Championship ring prior to their game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at ORACLE Arena on October 16, 2018 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors kisses his 2017-2018 Championship ring prior to their game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at ORACLE Arena on October 16, 2018 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Curry has some of the best handles in the game, and has developed into a solid defensive player. While he will always be known for revolutionizing the game with his shooting, Curry is certainly a complete player.

We wish Steph Curry a wonderful 31st birthday.

Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

The NBA went pretty easy on Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook after a recent verbal altercation with a fan.

Westbrook got into an intense verbal altercation with a fan a couple days ago during a game against the Jazz, and threatened to “f**k” up the man and his wife. (RELATED: Russell Westbrook Tells Fan He Will ‘F**k’ Him And His Wife Up)

According to Bleacher Report, the NBA star has been fined only $25,000 and the fan has been banned from future games.

This is a bad look for the NBA. They should have gone much harder on Westbrook. Only $25,000? Are you kidding me? He’s not even going to notice that money is missing. (RELATED: Michael Jordan Has Great Quote About His Six Rings When Discussing James Harden And Russell Westbrook)

He’s making $35 million this season. You think he gives a damn about $25,000? Hell no.

Westbrook claimed the altercation started over a racist comment, and the fan denied that was the case. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter. Banning a guy for life over a comment nobody is sure about seems like a massive overreaction.

The Oklahoma City Thunder star just has to learn to be the bigger man. He’s the one getting paid millions, and he’s the one representing a global brand.

Short of a fan threatening violence, there’s no reason to ever threaten them. I don’t care what they say. I really don’t.

If you have a problem, then go get security. That’s the only option on the table. By fining Westbrook such a little amount, the league is pretty much doing nothing.

That’s unacceptable.

He should have been suspended for several games, and he should have lost at least $100,000. The league really dropped the ball on this one.

Follow David Hookstead on Twitter

Source: The Daily Caller

David Hookstead | Reporter

The Arizona Cardinals have signed quarterback Brett Hundley.

According to Ian Rapoport Tuesday night, the Cardinals inked the former UCLA star to a deal worth up to $3 million. Hundley previously backed up Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay and Russell Wilson in Seattle. (RELATED: New York Giants Trade Odell Beckham Jr. To The Cleveland Browns)

Normally, the signing of a backup quarterback wouldn’t mean much. That’s not the case here, and I’ll tell you why. Hundley is a relatively mobile quarterback. You know who isn’t mobile at all? Current Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen.

Do we all know who is super mobile? Kyler Murray. The fact the Cardinals went out and signed Hundley as a backup makes me only think even more that we’ll be seeing the Oklahoma Sooners Heisman winner in red and white this upcoming season. (RELATED: Kyler Murray Measures In At Over 5’10” At The Combine)

If not, why wouldn’t they sign a more traditional pocket passer to backup Rosen? It just doesn’t make sense.

Everybody has been doubting me for months about who the Cardinals will take, and yet, I look more and more correct by the day.

Bringing Hundley into the fold is only the latest piece of evidence that Murray is going to be Kliff Kingsbury’s quarterback in 2019.

Again, if they’re looking for a traditional pocket passer, then there are certainly better options out there than the former Packers and Seahawks backup.

It’s all coming together very nicely. Shoutout to all the critics and haters who thought Murray wouldn’t ever go number one. I’ll see you at the draft in April.

Follow David Hookstead on Twitter

Source: The Daily Caller

FILE PHOTO: NFL: Combine
FILE PHOTO: Mar 2, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray (QB11) who did not participate in workout drills watches from the sidelines during the 2019 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports – 12268222

March 13, 2019

Kyler Murray will perform quarterback drills and other testing at his much-anticipated pro day workout in Norman, Okla., on Wednesday.

The Arizona Cardinals are among the teams expected to send a large contingent of coaches and personnel evaluators. Arizona owns the No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 draft and speculation simmered during the NFL Scouting Combine that the Cardinals are primed to draft Murray and deal their 2018 first-round pick, Josh Rosen, for additional draft picks or a veteran.

Murray did not throw or take part in measurement tests at the combine, including the 40-yard dash, vertical jump and broad jump.

Beyond the Cardinals, the Oakland Raiders (fourth overall), New York Giants (sixth), Cincinnati Bengals (11th) and Miami Dolphins (13th) could covet Murray. The Denver Broncos are a longer shot to look at Murray with the 10th pick after trading for Joe Flacco.

–The Denver Broncos, who will have two new inductees into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this summer, will meet the Atlanta Falcons in the 2019 Hall of Fame Game on Aug. 1 in Canton, Ohio.

Broncos owner Pat Bowlen and cornerback Champ Bailey — who spent 10 seasons in Denver — will be enshrined into the Hall of Fame two days later, as will tight end Tony Gonzalez, who spent the final five seasons of his 17-year NFL career with the Falcons.

Other members of the 2019 class are safety Ed Reed, cornerback Ty Law, safety Johnny Robinson, center Kevin Mawae and personnel executive Gil Brandt.

–The Atlanta Falcons have given themselves financial wiggle room this offseason by restructuring the contract of quarterback Matt Ryan, ESPN reported.

The team created $7 million in cap space by converting $8.75 million of his 2019 base salary into a signing bonus. Before the move, the Falcons had the least amount of cap room in the NFL at just more than $6 million, according to overthecap.com.

Ryan signed a five-year, $150 million contract last year.

–Dez Bryant could return to the New Orleans Saints when he’s recovered from the ruptured Achilles suffered in his second day of practice in 2018.

According to NFL Network, the Saints are hoping Bryant, 30, can play this season. He was signed last November as a free agent to a one-year, $600,000 contract after going months without interest following his release from the Dallas Cowboys in April 2018.

Bryant has 531 catches for 7,459 yards and 73 touchdowns in his career, but he hasn’t posted a 1,000-yard season since 2014.

–Standout pass rusher Khalil Mack restructured his contract to create salary cap space for the Chicago Bears in 2019. The team converted $11 million of Mack’s 2019 base salary and roster bonus into a signing bonus to whittle more room under the cap.

Chicago is without a first-round draft pick, which was traded to Oakland in the deal for Mack.

The Bears reportedly have shown interest in free agent running back Le’Veon Bell, who is being pursued by as many as six teams after not playing last season in a contract dispute with the Steelers.

— The Pittsburgh Steelers announced they will keep injured linebacker Ryan Shazier under contract for 2019, allowing him to retain his medical insurance as he continues to recover from a spinal injury.

Shazier, who suffered the severe injury late in the 2017 season, will remain on the physically unable to perform list for the 2019 season. He will be paid a salary commensurate with his years of service in the NFL, and he’ll accrue another year toward his pension.

“We will continue to support Ryan’s efforts to return to play,” Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert said. “Although he won’t be able to help us on the field in 2019, his leadership, insight, and emotional support have always been very valuable to us, and we look forward to his contributions in our pursuit of a championship.”

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

William Davis | Contributor

Attorney Michael Avenatti is no longer representing porn star Stormy Daniels — born Stephanie Clifford — the client who brought the New York lawyer to international fame.

Avenatti announced on Twitter Tuesday that he is ending his legal representation of Daniels. (RELATED: Fox Editor Explains Why He Killed Stormy Daniels Story)

“On February 19, we informed Stormy Daniels in writing that we were terminating our legal representation of her,” Avenatti said in a statement. “This was not a decision we made lightly and it came only after lengthy discussion, thought and deliberation, as well as consultation with other professionals. We wish Stormy all the best.”

Clifford later announced in a tweet that she was retaining Tulsa, Oklahoma, attorney Clark Brewster as her new lawyer.

Clifford made waves in early 2018 when she claimed to have had an affair with President Donald Trump in 2006, which she said the former presidential candidate tried to keep quiet with a hush-money payment of $130,000 before the 2016 elections. (RELATED: Fox Editor Explains Why He Killed Stormy Daniels Story)

As Daniels’ lawyer, Avenatti came to fame, making frequent TV appearances to publicly support his client.

Follow William Davis on Twitter

Source: The Daily Caller

FILE PHOTO: NFL: Combine
FILE PHOTO: Mar 2, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray (QB11) who did not participate in workout drills watches from the sidelines during the 2019 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports – 12268222

March 12, 2019

Kyler Murray will perform quarterback drills and other testing at his much-anticipated pro day workout in Norman, Okla., on Wednesday.

Among the teams expected to send a large contingent of coaches and personnel evaluators are the Arizona Cardinals.

Arizona owns the No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 draft and speculation simmered during the NFL Scouting Combine that the Cardinals are primed to draft Murray and deal their 2018 first-round pick, Josh Rosen, for additional draft picks or a veteran.

Murray did not throw or take part in measurement tests at the combine, including the 40-yard dash, vertical jump and broad jump, but his height became headline news. Murray was rumored to be shorter than 5-foot-10. He measured 5-10 and 1/8.

While he erased worries about height and weight — Murray was 207 in Indianapolis — evaluators will want to gauge Murray’s ability to pass while dropping back from center and how he throws NFL-type routes.

All told, Murray proved he could pass in claiming the 2018 Heisman Trophy.

Only four of his passes were batted down — according to Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley, citing the program’s film review — and Murray was one of the top three passers on throws from the pocket last season, per Pro Football Focus analysis.

The Cardinals had little skill talent around Rosen last season and the offensive line was a worry most of the year.

First-year head coach Kliff Kingsbury, who coached at Texas Tech last season, said of his then-conference rival in October that Murray was worthy of the No. 1 overall pick. Kingsbury since attempted to backpedal from those comments, given the new reality-based context.

Murray said he would covet the opportunity to follow Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield as the first players from the same program to win the Heisman Trophy, then go first overall in the draft.

“To be the No. 1 pick, that’s a kid’s dream come true,” Murray said. “If my name was called No. 1, I’d be ready to go for sure.”

Beyond the Cardinals, the Oakland Raiders (fourth overall), New York Giants (sixth), Cincinnati Bengals (11th) and Miami Dolphins (13th) could covet Murray. The Denver Broncos are a longer shot to look at Murray with the 10th pick after trading for Joe Flacco.

Oklahoma’s pro day is typically widely attended. Dozens of high-level NFL types, including Broncos vice president John Elway and then-Bengals coach Marvin Lewis, turned out for the event last spring.

Kingsbury’s infatuation with Murray is rooted in Texas football tradition. Murray went 43-0 as a starter in high school (Allen), was the 2014 Gatorade National Player of the Year and was recruited by Kingsbury before choosing to sign with Texas A&M.

But Murray ultimately transferred and wound up following Mayfield at OU. With the Sooners, he went 12-2 as a starter and led the team into the College Football Playoff. He’s a prize in the NFL draft only after spurning the Oakland Athletics, who drafted Murray in the first round of the 2018 MLB draft.

The familiarity between coach and NFL prospect is a two-way street.

“I know what type of offense he runs,” Murray said of Kingsbury.

“Obviously he recruited me out of high school; I have a great relationship with him. If I were to play under him, I think it’d be a great deal. But again, like I said, I don’t get to pick the players. All I can do is show up where I’m supposed to be, work hard and get after it.”

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

Evie Fordham | Politics and Health Care Reporter

Many lawsuits related to the opioid crisis have focused on Purdue Pharma, but an Oklahoma suit against several drugmakers will paint Johnson & Johnson as an opioid “kingpin,” according to Axios Tuesday.

Johnson & Johnson (J&J) is more recognizable as the maker of baby powder and Band-Aids, but the company sold the opioid Nucynta until 2015 and still sells the Duragesic fentanyl patch, according to The Washington Post.

Oklahoma’s Attorney General Mike Hunter petitioned a state court in late February to publicly release millions of pages of confidential papers submitted by J&J during discovery, reported Axios. (RELATED: Purdue Pharma Could Reportedly Move Toward Filing Bankruptcy. Here’s How That Could Help It As Lawsuits Pile Up)

“The public interest in this information is urgent, enduring and overwhelming,” he wrote.

Jennifer Taubert, executive vice president and worldwide chairman of Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Johnson & Johnson (2nd R) testifies before the Senate Finance Committee on "Drug Pricing in America: A Prescription for Change, Part II" February 26, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Jennifer Taubert, executive vice president and worldwide chairman of Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Johnson & Johnson (2nd R) testifies before the Senate Finance Committee on “Drug Pricing in America: A Prescription for Change, Part II” February 26, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Nearly 800 Oklahoma residents died of drug overdoses in 2017, and about 50 percent were opioid-related, according to WaPo.

Oklahoma’s suit, which also targets Purdue Pharma, Johnson & Johnson, Teva Pharmaceuticals, Actavis and others, will portray J&J as the leading supplier, seller and lobbyist for the opioid industry, a state official told Axios. Since J&J divested its opioid business (it used to produce raw narcotics it sold to other opioid manufacturers), Oklahoma’s lawyers say the documents should be made public because they are no longer trade secrets.

J&J wants the judge to let it keep the documents confidential and said the state is looking for “sensationalistic headlines and to poison potential jurors,” according to Axios. The company says the request would violate the court’s processes and that their subsidiaries “met all laws and regulations” and that all allegations are “baseless and unsubstantiated.”

The trial will start May 28, even though several of the companies requested a delay.

J&J is also being accused of targeting children and the elderly for opioid painkiller prescriptions, reported Axios.

Purdue Pharma will contend with the Oklahoma suit as well as a suit brought by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey. That suit alleges the company misled doctors and patients about the risks of opioids to increase prescriptions.

Follow Evie on Twitter @eviefordham.

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Source: The Daily Caller

FILE PHOTO: NBA: Oklahoma City Thunder at Utah Jazz
FILE PHOTO: Mar 11, 2019; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) hands his shoes to an Oklahoma City Thunder fan after the game against the Utah Jazz at Vivint Smart Home Arena. Oklahoma City Thunder won 114-104. Mandatory Credit: Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports

March 12, 2019

(Reuters) – Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook had a heated confrontation with a male fan and his wife during his team’s away win in Utah on Monday.

Westbrook was caught on video standing near his team’s bench and directing an expletive-laden tirade at a fan off camera.

Westbrook addressed the incident following OKC’s 96-89 win and said it began when the fan and his wife told the All Star player to “get down on your knees like you’re used to”.

“To me that’s just completely disrespectful,” Westbrook told reporters. “I think there are a lot of great fans around the world that like to come to the game and enjoy the game.

“Then there are people that come to the game to say mean, disrespectful things about me, my family.

“And if I had to do it again, I would say the same exact thing, because I truly will stand up for myself, for my family, for my kids, for my wife, for my mom, for my dad every single time. I expect anybody else to do the same.”

Westbrook had another testy interaction with Jazz fans in last year’s playoffs when he slapped a fan’s cell phone as he walked off the court.

Last month, a young kid sitting courtside in Denver nudged Westbrook after he stepped out of bounds. In that instance, Westbrook stopped and had a calm conversation with the fan and his dad.

“We are continuing to investigate the unfortunate exchange at tonight’s game between Russell Westbrook and fans,” Jazz were quoted as saying by local media in a statement.

“Multiple warning cards were issued by arena security. Players and fans have a shared responsibility to create a safe and respectful environment.

“If it is determined that any fans violated the NBA Code of Conduct, appropriate action will be taken.”

(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; editing by Sudipto Ganguly)

Source: OANN

NBA: Charlotte Hornets at Houston Rockets
Mar 11, 2019; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets center Clint Capela (15) attempts to shoot the ball over Charlotte Hornets center Willy Hernangomez (41) during the first quarter at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

March 12, 2019

Lou Williams scored 34 points to become the most prolific bench scorer in NBA history as the Los Angeles Clippers blew out the visiting Boston Celtics 140-115 on Monday.

Danilo Gallinari scored 13 of his 25 points in the opening quarter, and Montrezl Harrell added 20 points as the Clippers won their fifth consecutive game and improved to 9-3 since their roster was restructured at the trade deadline.

Williams, who leads the NBA in points off the bench this season, passed Dell Curry as the highest scoring player off the bench of all time and now has 11,154 as a reserve in his career. Curry had 11,148 points as a reserve. It was Williams’ eighth game of the season with at least 30 points, all since Dec. 28.

Terry Rozier scored 26 points for the Celtics, who saw their three-game winning streak end. Boston went 3-1 on a four-game road trip, all against California teams. Jaylen Brown scored 22 points, and Kyrie Irving added 18 and 11 assists for the Celtics.

Rockets 118, Hornets 106

Clint Capela dominated the paint as Houston stretched its winning streak to nine games with a victory over visiting Charlotte.

Capela paired 19 points on 8-of-12 shooting with 15 rebounds and controlled the interior as the Rockets produced a 55-39 rebounding advantage. James Harden led the Rockets with 28 points and 10 assists. Eric Gordon chipped in 22 points, and Chris Paul contributed 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Hornets star Kemba Walker finished with a game-high 40 points on 14-of-20 shooting. He shot a combined 11 of 11 in the second and third periods, pouring in 31 points during that stretch.

Thunder 98, Jazz 89

Dennis Schroder scored 24 points, and Russell Westbrook had 23 points and 11 rebounds as Oklahoma City beat Utah in Salt Lake City.

The win was just the third in nine games for the Thunder, who beat the Jazz for the fourth time this season to sweep the season series. Paul George struggled offensively yet again for Oklahoma City, though he finished with 14 points and 11 rebounds.

Utah, which got a game-high 25 points from Donovan Mitchell, lost for the third time in the past four games.

Cavaliers 126, Raptors 101

Collin Sexton scored 28 points as Cleveland cruised past visiting Toronto.

Kevin Love, with 16 points and 18 rebounds, recorded his ninth double-double in 14 games for the Cavaliers this season. Love also was a force on the defensive end, drawing four offensive fouls. Cleveland’s Cedi Osman added 19 points.

Kawhi Leonard led the Raptors with 25 points and nine rebounds. Toronto’s Serge Ibaka and Cleveland’s Marquese Chriss were ejected following a fight near the end of the third quarter.

Nets 103, Pistons 75

Spencer Dinwiddie scored 19 points as Brooklyn seized control late in the first half and claimed a lopsided win over Detroit in New York.

In the final game before a season-long seven-game road trip that starts Wednesday in Oklahoma City, the Nets won their fourth straight. Allen Crabbe added 14 points for Brooklyn.

Andre Drummond collected 13 points and 20 rebounds for Detroit, which had its five-game winning streak stopped. Blake Griffin finished with 10 points on 1-of-10 shooting.

Wizards 121, Kings 115

Bradley Beal scored 27 points, Bobby Portis added 17 points and 13 rebounds, and Washington defeated visiting Sacramento.

Jabari Parker scored 18 points and Tomas Satoransky had 17 as the Wizards started a crucial five-game homestand by ending a two-game losing skid. Beal added nine rebounds, nine assists and four steals.

De’Aaron Fox led seven Kings in double figures with 23 points. Nemanja Bjelica had 15 points and 12 rebounds for Sacramento.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: The Boeing KC-46 Pegasus aerial refueling tanker is bathed in blue light before a delivery celebration to the U.S. Air Force in Everett, Washington
FILE PHOTO: The Boeing KC-46 Pegasus aerial refueling tanker is bathed in blue light before a delivery celebration to the U.S. Air Force in Everett, Washington, U.S., January 24, 2019. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson

March 12, 2019

(Reuters) – The U.S. Air Force said that a Boeing Co KC-46 Pegasus tanker jet was being delivered on Monday to Altus Air Force Base in Oklahoma.

Deliveries of the jet were halted last month when foreign object debris was found in one of the aircraft. Boeing had offered to inspect all the aircraft that were accepted by the Air Force.

In a statement released to Reuters on Monday, Rose Riley, Air Mobility Command representative, said that under the corrective action plan, subsequent deliveries would occur as Boeing successfully completes each aircraft’s inspection.

The Air Force had stopped accepting Boeing’s KC-46 tankers as of Feb. 20, saying the issue was not with the aircraft itself but with the process in place for building it.

(Reporting by Shradha Singh in Bengaluru and Mike Stone in Washington; Editing by Peter Cooney)

Source: OANN

NCAA Basketball: Duke at North Carolina
Mar 9, 2019; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels guard Coby White (2) reacts in the second half at Dean E. Smith Center. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

March 10, 2019

Freshman guard Coby White ignited a second-half surge and finished with 21 points as third-ranked North Carolina defeated fourth-ranked Duke 79-70 Saturday night in Chapel Hill, N.C., to claim a share of the Atlantic Coast Conference title.

North Carolina will be the second seed, and Duke will be the No. 3 seed for the ACC Tournament in Charlotte. There could be a semifinals rematch Friday night.

Senior guard Kenny Williams scored 18 points in his last home game; Cameron Johnson, another senior, netted 14 points, and Garrison Brooks tallied 10 points. Nassir Little scored all nine of his points in the first half for the Tar Heels.

RJ Barrett pumped in 26 points and Cam Reddish scored 17 of his 23 in the first half for Duke.

No. 2 Virginia 73, Louisville 68

The Cavaliers clinched a share of the ACC regular-season title with their win over the Cardinals in Charlottesville, Va.

The Cavaliers wrapped up their fourth regular-season conference title in the last six seasons ahead of next week’s ACC Tournament in Charlotte, where they are the defending champions. No. 3 North Carolina beat No. 4 Duke later Saturday to claim the other share of the regular-season championship.

Junior guard Ty Jerome led all scorers with 24 points and added six assists and four rebounds. Louisville (19-12, 10-8) gave the Cavaliers all they wanted as the Cardinals put four players in double figures led by Jordan Nwora, who scored 19 points.

Auburn 84, No. 5 Tennessee 80

Chuma Okeke scored 22 points and notched four steals to help the host Tigers upset the Volunteers in their Southeastern Conference matchup.

Jared Harper had 16 points and eight assists, and senior guard Bryce Brown also scored 16 points for the Tigers (22-9, 11-7).

Grant Williams had 25 points and nine rebounds for the Volunteers (27-4, 15-3).

No. 6 Kentucky 66, Florida 57

The Wildcats pulled away in the second half against the Gators in Lexington, Ky., as Tyler Herro scored 16 points.

With Tennessee losing to Auburn earlier Saturday afternoon, the Wildcats (26-5, 15-3 SEC) looked to claim a three-way share of the league title. But LSU beat Vanderbilt later Saturday night to spoil Kentucky’s hopes.

Sophomore forward PJ Washington added 15 points and nine rebounds for Kentucky. Freshman guards Keldon Johnson and Ashton Hagans each had 14 points. Senior center Kevarrius Hayes led the Gators (17-14, 9-9) with 19 points on 8-of-9 shooting.

No. 9 Michigan State 75, No. 7 Michigan 63

Cassius Winston overcame a poor shooting night to score 23 points and lead the host Spartans over the Wolverines in East Lansing, Mich.

Michigan State (25-6, 16-4 Big Ten) clinched a share of the Big Ten championship with Purdue while locking up the No. 1 seed in next week’s conference tournament. Michigan (26-5, 15-5) finished a game out of first place and will be the third seed in the conference tournament.

Winston also handed out seven assists for the Spartans while Xavier Tillman scored 17 and Kenny Goins had nine points and 16 rebounds. Ignas Brazdeikis scored 20 for the Wolverines, but he fouled out with 5:10 left in the game. Jordan Poole added 15 points.

No. 8 Texas Tech 80, Iowa State 73

Improved shooting fueled a timely run and led the Red Raiders past the Cyclones to earn a share of the Big 12 Conference championship for the first time in league history.

Brandone Francis drained a clutch 3-pointer with 3:37 to snap a 65-65 tie and Jarrett Culver followed with a basket for two of his game-high 31 points to supply enough breathing room to hold on for the win.

Davide Moretti continued to quietly operate as one of the Big 12’s off-the-radar standouts with 20 points and joined Culver with four 3-pointers as the Raiders finished 11 for 26 from outside the arc. Matt Mooney scored 13 and led Tech with five assists, while Tariq Owens snared 14 rebounds.

No. 10 LSU 80, Vanderbilt 59

Playing without suspended head coach Will Wade and two of its top four scorers, the Tigers routed the Commodores in Baton Rouge, La.

Tremont Waters scored 14 points and had eight assists as LSU (26-5, 16-2) captured its first outright regular-season SEC title since 2009. Vanderbilt was paced by Saben Lee with 16 points.

With the sellout crowd waving “Free Will Wade” signs, LSU easily dispatched Vanderbilt (9-22, 0-18), which lost its last 19 games of the season and was the first team since Georgia Tech in 1953-54 to go winless in SEC play.

No. 13 Kansas 78, Baylor 70

Dedric Lawson recorded his 20th double-double, posting 23 points and 14 rebounds as the Jayhawks got past the Bears in Lawrence, Kan.

Although the Jayhawks (23-8, 12-6 Big 12) were eliminated from the Big 12 title chase earlier in the week, they finished undefeated at home for the 21st time.

Freshman guard Devon Dotson and freshman center David McCormack added 15 and 12 points, respectively. Jared Butler led Baylor (19-12, 10-8) with 31 points.

No. 14 Florida State 65, Wake Forest 57

The Seminoles won their 12th game in 13 tries by closing out the regular-season schedule with a win over the Demon Deacons in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Guard Trent Forrest had 11 points and five assists for the Seminoles (25-6, 13-5 ACC). Senior forward Phil Cofer added nine points in the victory, which set a school record for conference wins since the Seminoles joined the ACC in 1992.

Wake Forest fell to 11-19 overall and 4-14 in ACC play. The Demon Deacons were paced by guard Brandon Childress, who scored a game-high 13 points. Wake Forest guard Chaundee Brown added 11 points.

Georgetown 86, No. 16 Marquette 84

James Akinjo racked up 25 points, five rebounds and five assists as the Hoyas denied the Golden Eagles a share of the Big East title.

The 16th-ranked Eagles (23-8, 12-6) could have pulled even with Villanova after the Wildcats lost to Seton Hall earlier in the afternoon. But they instead dropped their fourth straight heading into the conference tournament.

Mac McClung supplied 23 points for the Hoyas (19-12, 9-9), while Jessie Govan and Jamorko Pickett had 10 points apiece. Markus Howard’s 28 points led Marquette. Joey Hauser had 16 points, Sacar Anim added 12 and Brendan Bailey tossed in 11.

No. 17 Nevada 81, San Diego State 53

Caleb Martin recorded 25 points, seven assists and six rebounds and the Wolf Pack earned the top seed in next week’s Mountain West Conference tournament by blowing out the Aztecs in Reno, Nev.

Jordan Caroline added 16 points and 12 rebounds to extend his Mountain West double-double record to 45. Cody Martin scored 14 points and senior power forward Trey Porter added 13 for the Wolf Pack (28-3, 15-3). Senior guard Jeremy Hemsley scored 16 points for San Diego State (19-12, 11-7).

Nevada tied with Utah State for first place in the conference. The two teams split their regular-season matchups, but the Wolf Pack win the tiebreaker because they swept third-place Fresno State while the Aggies split with the Bulldogs.

No. 18 Kansas State 68, Oklahoma 53

The Wildcats got a combined 45 points from its three seniors to knock off the Sooners on Senior Day in Manhattan, Kan.

The victory gave the Wildcats a share of their first Big 12 regular-season title since they shared the 2013 title with Kansas. Texas Tech defeated Iowa State in Ames, Iowa, earlier to claim a share.

The Wildcats, who will be the No. 1 seed at next week’s Big 12 Championship in Kansas City, were led by Kamau Stokes with 19 points. Barry Brown added 15 and Dean Wade added 11. Kristian Doolittle led Oklahoma (19-12, 7-11) with 14 points, and Jamal Bieniemy added 12.

No. 22 Wofford 99, Virginia Military Institute 72

Six Terriers players scored in double figures as they opened Southern Conference Tournament play by trouncing the Keydets in the quarterfinals in Asheville, N.C.

Nathan Hoover led Wofford (27-4, 18-0) with 17 points, while Chevez Goodwin notched 14 and Keve Aluma added 12. The Terriers will play East Tennessee State in Sunday’s semifinals.

Bubba Parham, the conference’s leading scorer, notched 14 of his 22 points in the first half for VMI (11-21, 4-14).

Seton Hall 79, No. 23 Villanova 75

Myles Powell scored 20 points and Sandro Mamukelashvili added 12 points and 18 rebounds as the host Pirates toppled the Wildcats in Newark, N.J.

Seton Hall (18-12, 9-9 Big East) remained on the NCAA Tournament bubble while preventing Villanova (22-9, 13-5) from earning the outright conference regular-season title, but only until Marquette lost to Georgetown later in the day.

Myles Cale scored 19 points, Jared Rhoden had 15 and Michael Nzei delivered 10 for Seton Hall. Collin Gillespie led Villanova with 22 points, while Phil Booth scored 16, Saddiq Bey had 13 and Jermaine Samuels had 10.

Temple 67, No. 25 UCF 62

Guard Quinton Rose scored nine of his 11 points over the last nine minutes of the game to spark the Owls’ upset of the Knights in their American Athletic Conference game in Philadelphia.

Guard Shizz Alston Jr. scored 21 points to lead the Owls (23-8, 13-5), who moved into a tie for third place with the Knights (23-7, 13-5) and kept alive their hopes for a No. 3 seed in next week’s league tournament in Memphis.

Rose’s late heroics and Alston’s steady play overcame a huge game from UCF junior guard Aubrey Dawkins, the son of Knights coach Johnny Dawkins, who was a game-time decision to play after hurting his back two nights earlier. Dawkins scored a career-high 36 points.

Murray State 77, Belmont 65

The Racers punched the first ticket to this year’s NCAA Tournament by rallying to beat the Bruins in the Ohio Valley Conference championship game in Evansville, Ind.

Prized NBA prospect Ja Morant scored 36 points to help Murray State advance. The Racers trailed 31-26 at halftime but outscored Belmont 51-34 in the second half.

Murray State (27-4, 16-2) closed the game with 11 straight points against Belmont (26-5, 16-2).

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

Katie Jerkovich | Entertainment Reporter

It’s Carrie Underwood’s birthday on Sunday.

In honor of the 36-year-old country singer’s day, we scoured the internet to find her hottest looks on the red carpet and stage to date. (RELATED: Celebrate Samantha Hoopes’ Birthday With Her Hottest Looks)

Born in Chetocah, Oklahoma, the superstar got her first big break in the entertainment business in 2005 when she won the fourth season of the hit singing reality competition “American Idol.” (RELATED: Celebrate Anna Kendrick’s Birthday With Her Hottest Looks [SLIDESHOW])

And the rest, as they say, is history. Soon she became a worldwide celebrity and has been breaking hearts all over the world ever since. Her debut studio album titled “Some Hearts” had two huge hits, “Jesus Take The Wheel” and “Before He Cheats.” It went on to become the best-selling solo female debut album in the history of country music. (RELATED: Take A Look Back At Adriana Lima’s Career With Victoria’s Secret)

Since that time, she’s gone on to win seven Grammy awards, not to mention countless other accolades from the Country Music Association and Billboard. (RELATED: Check Out The Hottest Looks From The 60th Grammy Awards [SLIDESHOW])

And on top of all that incredible talent, she’s absolutely gorgeous. But you don’t have to take our word for it. Check out this list of her most jaw-dropping looks and let us know if you agree. (RELATED: Take A Look Back At Our Favorite Celebs’ Hottest Looks Of 2018)

Here’s to hoping this new year is her greatest one yet. Happy Birthday, Carrie! (RELATED: Celebrate Kate Upton’s Birthday With These Unforgettable Shots [SLIDESHOW])

Source: The Daily Caller

FILE PHOTO: NBA: Philadelphia 76ers at Houston Rockets
FILE PHOTO: Mar 8, 2019; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) elevates for a dunk against the Philadelphia 76ers during the fourth quarter at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports

March 10, 2019

Houston Rockets guard James Harden will play Sunday at the Dallas Mavericks, after precautionary X-rays came back negative on his right wrist and he was cleared to practice on Saturday.

Harden, the NBA’s scoring leader (36.6 points per game), aggravated the wrist injury Friday night when he fell in the first half of a win over the Philadelphia 76ers. He left briefly but returned and finished with 31 points in 32 minutes.

Harden, who is left-handed, first hurt the wrist on March 3 against the Boston Celtics. He has missed just four games to injury this year, and only one since Nov. 2.

The Rockets, who are finally healthy elsewhere on the roster, have won seven straight games to move into third place in the Western Conference. They sit three games back of Denver for the second spot and five games back of first-place Golden State.

–Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram is expected to miss the rest of the regular season after the team’s medical staff revealed a deep venous thrombosis in his right arm, the team announced.

The third-year wing had missed the last two games due to shoulder soreness before further testing revealed the new diagnosis.

Meanwhile, multiple reports indicate second-year Lakers guard Lonzo Ball has also been shut down for the remainder of the season after having his injured left ankle re-evaluated. Ball has missed the team’s last 18 games as a result of the injury.

–The NBA fined Oklahoma City star Paul George $25,000 for his criticism of the officiating following the Thunder’s 118-110 loss to the Clippers on Friday night in Los Angeles.

George and teammates Russell Westbrook and Steven Adams all fouled out over the final four minutes of the game, and George called it “bad officiating” and said the Thunder “don’t get a fair whistle. We haven’t gotten a fair whistle all year.”

The Clippers took 46 free-throw attempts in the game, with Lou Williams and Danilo Gallinari each going to the foul line 15 times. The Thunder had 26 free-throw attempts as a team.

–The Minnesota Timberwolves signed Cameron Reynolds to a second 10-day contract that will keep the forward with the team at least through the middle of March.

Reynolds, who went undrafted out of Tulane in 2018, was signed to his first 10-day contract Feb. 27 after he averaged 16.0 points with 4.3 rebounds and 1.2 assists with the Stockton Kings of the NBA G League. He has scored four points in seven minutes of two games with Minnesota.

In four games with the USA Men’s World Cup Qualifying Team, Reynolds shot 45.9 percent from the field and 41.9 percent from 3-point range. In a Feb. 22 victory over Panama, he had 26 points on 10-of-17 shooting from the field and made 6 of 11 shots from 3-point range.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

NBA: Oklahoma City Thunder at Portland Trail Blazers
Mar 7, 2019; Portland, OR, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Paul George (13) takes a shot during shoot around before Oklahoma plays Portland Trail Blazers at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

March 10, 2019

The NBA fined Oklahoma City star Paul George $25,000 on Saturday for his criticism of the officiating following the Thunder’s 118-110 loss to the Clippers on Friday night in Los Angeles.

The fine was announced by Kiki VanDeWeghe, the league’s vice president of basketball operations.

George and teammates Russell Westbrook and Steven Adams all fouled out over the final four minutes of the game.

“It’s just bad officiating,” George said. “I’m sorry, just bad officiating. We don’t get a fair whistle. We haven’t gotten a fair whistle all year.

“Somebody’s got to look into this. It’s getting out of hand, where we somehow just walk teams to the line. And there’s nobody that gets more contact. If I don’t speak for myself, I speak for Russ. There’s nobody that gets more contact than Russ going to the basket. And it’s just crazy. I don’t understand it. It’s a piece of (expletive) being on that floor.”

The Clippers took 46 free-throw attempts in the game, with slashing guard Lou Williams Danilo Gallianri each going to the foul line 15 times. The Thunder had 26 free-throw attempts as a team.

“We’re giving everything we got,” George continued. “We’re playing hard. We’re getting grabbed. We’re getting scratched, clawed, held, shoved. And there’s nothing for it. The officials just get to walk out, and there’s nothing that penalizes them for not officiating the game the right way.”

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

NBA: Oklahoma City Thunder at Portland Trail Blazers
Mar 7, 2019; Portland, OR, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Paul George (13) takes a shot during shoot around before Oklahoma plays Portland Trail Blazers at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

March 9, 2019

The Oklahoma City Thunder’s Paul George did not hold back on his opinion of the referees in Friday night’s 118-110 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers, shortly after he fouled out of the game, along with Russell Westbrook and Steven Adams over the final four minutes of the game.

“It’s just bad officiating,” George said. “I’m sorry, just bad officiating. We don’t get a fair whistle. We haven’t gotten a fair whistle all year.

“Somebody’s got to look into this. It’s getting out of hand, where we somehow just walk teams to the line. And there’s nobody that gets more contact. If I don’t speak for myself, I speak for Russ. There’s nobody that gets more contact than Russ going to the basket. And it’s just crazy. I don’t understand it. It’s a piece of (expletive) being on that floor.”

The Clippers took 46 free-throw attempts in the game, with slashing guard Lou Williams going to the foul line 24 times alone. The Thunder had 26 free-throw attempts as a team.

“We’re giving everything we got,” George continued. “We’re playing hard. We’re getting grabbed. We’re getting scratched, clawed, held, shoved. And there’s nothing for it. The officials just get to walk out, and there’s nothing that penalizes them for not officiating the game the right way.”

The Clippers are first in the league with 28.8 trips to the free-throw line a game, while the Thunder are third in the league at 25.9. The Thunder are called for 22.8 personal fouls per game, fourth most in the NBA.

“Too much fouling,” Thunder head coach Billy Donovan said. “Our guys are playing hard and competing, but like there is no reason for Lou Williams to get to the free throw line 20 times. We’ve got to know that. And like our guys are playing really hard and are really competing, but we are fouling too much away from the ball when we don’t have to.”

According to ESPN, Friday’s game was just the second in 10 years where three starters from the same team fouled out in regulation time of a game. The last was Feb. 12, 2014 when it happened to the Washington Wizards. In the last 20 seasons, just three teams have seen two All-Stars foul out in a single game.

George fouled out with 3:49 to play, Westbrook had to leave with 54.2 seconds remaining and Adams took a seat with 9.2 seconds remaining.

“To play without fouling is tough sometimes,” Westbrook told reporters. “A lot of those guys like play to get fouled. That is how the game is nowadays. It’s not really basketball. You’re just playing to get fouled to see what happens.”

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Bottles of prescription painkiller OxyContin made by Purdue Pharma LP on a counter at a local pharmacy in Provo
FILE PHOTO: Bottles of prescription painkiller OxyContin pills, made by Purdue Pharma LP sit on a counter at a local pharmacy in Provo, Utah, U.S., April 25, 2017. REUTERS/George Frey/File Photo

March 9, 2019

By Nate Raymond

(Reuters) – OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma LP and two other drugmakers on Friday lost a bid to delay a landmark trial set for May in a lawsuit by Oklahoma’s attorney general accusing them of helping fuel an opioid abuse and overdose epidemic in the state.

Cleveland County District Judge Thad Balkman’s decision was a win for the state, even as one of its lawyers said that Purdue had “threatened” to file for bankruptcy rather than face the first trial to result from around 2,000 lawsuits nationally.

“This case needs to get to trial because people are dying every day,” Reggie Whitten, a lawyer for the state, said during a hearing in Norman, Oklahoma.

Reuters, citing people familiar with the matter, on Monday reported that Stamford, Connecticut-based Purdue, owned by members of the wealthy Sackler family, was exploring filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Doing so would allow it to address potential legal liabilities while bringing the cases to a halt.

Eric Pinker, Purdue’s lawyer, made no mention of a potential bankruptcy while arguing to delay the May 28 trial in Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter’s lawsuit against it, Johnson & Johnson and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.

He instead argued that delaying a trial in the multibillion dollar case to Sept. 16 was necessary because the state belatedly turned over 1.6 million pages of records critical to Purdue’s defense.

“This case is not at a posture where it can fairly and fully go to trial in May of this year,” Pinker said.

But the judge said the drugmakers had not established the state’s actions had prejudiced them. The drugmakers’ lawyers said they would appeal.

Opioids, including prescription painkillers, heroin and fentanyl, were involved in a record 47,600 overdose deaths in 2017, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The epidemic has led to lawsuits by state and local governments accusing Purdue and other drugmakers of contributing to the crisis through deceptive marketing that downplayed the risks and benefits of addictive opioids.

The companies deny wrongdoing, noting their drugs carried warning labels and pointing to others factors that contributed to the epidemic.

More than 1,600 lawsuits have been consolidated before a federal judge in Ohio, who has been pushing for a settlement ahead of the first trial before him in October.

Other cases are pending in state courts, including Oklahoma’s, one of 36 lawsuits by state attorneys general facing Purdue.

(Reporting by Nate Raymond in Boston; editing by Grant McCool)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Russian servicemen drive S-400 missile air defence systems during the Victory Day parade at the Red Square in Moscow
FILE PHOTO: Russian servicemen drive S-400 missile air defence systems during the Victory Day parade, marking the 73rd anniversary of the victory over Nazi Germany in World War Two, at Red Square in Moscow, Russia May 9, 2018. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin/File Photo

March 8, 2019

By Tulay Karadeniz

ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey is running out of time to avert a showdown with the United States over its plans to buy advanced Russian air defenses and spurn a counter-offer from its NATO partner, raising the chance of U.S. sanctions against Ankara.

The last diplomatic crisis between the two countries contributed to driving the lira to a record low in August. Disputes over strategy in Syria, Iran sanctions and the detention of U.S. consular staff remain unresolved, and the issue of missile defense threatens to widen the rift again.

This week, despite the Central Bank maintaining interest rates well above inflation, Turkey’s currency has fallen 1.5 percent – largely due to renewed concerns over relations with Washington, traders say.

President Tayyip Erdogan’s government has missed a ‘soft deadline’ set by Washington to decide whether to buy a $3.5 billion Raytheon Co. Patriot missile shield system. The formal offer expires at the end of this month, U.S. officials have said.

Without publicly rejecting the U.S. proposal, Erdogan has repeatedly said he will not pull out of a contract for Russia’s S-400 defense system, due to be installed in October. Washington says Ankara cannot have both.

If it goes ahead with the Russian deal, Turkey also risks losing delivery of Lockheed Martin F-35 stealth fighter jets and could face sanctions under a U.S. law known as Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA).

But Erdogan has ruled out cancelling the deal with Russia, an increasingly powerful regional force which is building a nuclear power plant in Turkey and a gas export pipeline across Turkish territory to Europe.

“It’s done. There can never be a turning back,” Erdogan responded this week when asked about the S-400 contract. “This …would be immoral. Nobody should ask us to lick up what we spat.”

Ankara may even seek to procure Russia’s next generation S-500 system, he said.

NO BACKING DOWN

Defence Minister Hulusi Akar said on Friday U.S. officials have told Turkey it would be impossible for Congress to approve the sale of F-35 jets if Ankara buys the S-400, but that Turkey is working to overcome those problems. [A4N1Y101V]

Turkey says it has already paid Moscow some of the bill, and analysts say Erdogan, who is campaigning for March 31 local elections, would find it hard to back away from the Russian deal now.

“They have not once said they could change their mind,” said Ozgur Unluhisarcikli, of the German Marshall Fund in Ankara.

Turkey does not want to jeopardize efforts to find common ground with Russia on Syria, and has little time remaining for second thoughts as the S-400s’ delivery date approaches, he said.

That means the chance of U.S. sanctions are increasing, defense analyst Can Kasapoglu said, adding that “diplomatic room for maneuver is narrow.”

The U.S. Trade Representative’s Office said this week it intended to end a preferential trade system for Turkey.

It cited the country’s economic development, suggesting the decision was not political, but it first announced a review of Turkey’s eligibility after Ankara set retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods at the height of their dispute last year.

If Washington imposes sanctions under CAATSA, it could affect the combat readiness of Turkey’s existing fleet of U.S. F-16 jets, Kasapoglu wrote in a report in January. The jets have spearheaded Turkey’s air operations against Kurdish fighters in Iraq and Syria.

While bilateral tensions are focused for now on missile defense, other unresolved disputes continue to erode trust.

In addition to policy disagreements focused on the Middle East, the two countries are at odds over Venezuela. Washington backs its opposition leader Juan Guaido while Ankara endorses President Nicolas Maduro.

In that climate, even apparently innocent gestures can stoke tension.

A visit this week by U.S. First Lady Melania Trump to a pre-kindergarten class in Oklahoma raised hackles in Turkey. Turks believe the school she toured is linked to supporters of Fethullah Gulen, the U.S.-based cleric Ankara blames for a failed 2016 coup. Gulen has denied any involvement.

Retired Turkish diplomat Uluc Ozulker said Turkey now finds itself backed into a corner.

“The United States on the one hand, Russia on the other… We are stuck between the two,” he said. “Turkey cannot exit this crisis.”

(Editing by Dominic Evans and John Stonestreet)

Source: OANN

NBA: Oklahoma City Thunder at Denver Nuggets
Feb 26, 2019; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (15) reacts after a play in the second quarter against the Oklahoma City Thunder at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

February 27, 2019

Nikola Jokic had 36 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds, Will Barton scored 23 points, and the host Denver Nuggets beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 121-112 on Tuesday night.

Jamal Murray added 20 points and Paul Millsap finished with 12 points and 10 rebounds to help Denver win its fifth straight. The Nuggets have won each of their first three matchups against Oklahoma City this season.

Russell Westbrook had 22 points, 14 rebounds and nine assists, and Paul George added 25 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and six steals for Oklahoma City. Jerami Grant contributed 21 points for the Thunder, who have lost three of their past four.

The Nuggets held a 13-point lead early in the fourth quarter before Oklahoma City came storming back to take a three-point lead. Then Denver responded to the run with one of its own. Millsap hit two free throws, and Murray followed a Thunder miss with a corner 3-pointer to give the Nuggets the lead again. Millsap hit a layup and split two free throws to make it 105-101 with 4:19 left.

Raptors 118, Celtics 95

Pascal Siakam scored 25 points and grabbed eight rebounds to help Toronto defeat visiting Boston.

Kawhi Leonard added 21 points and six rebounds for the Raptors, who have won eight straight home games against the Celtics and eight of their past nine games overall.

Marcus Morris had 17 points and six rebounds for the Celtics, who have lost three in a row and five of their past seven.

Knicks 108, Magic 103

Emmanuel Mudiay scored 19 points to lead a big night from the reserves as New York overcame a 16-point deficit to record a victory over visiting Orlando.

The Knicks won consecutive games for the only time this season other than a three-game stretch in late November. They posted a second straight home victory after a team-record, 18-game home losing streak.

Rookie Allonzo Trier scored 12 of his 18 in the fourth while first-year center Mitchell Robinson finished with a career-best 17 points, 14 rebounds, six blocks and three steals for New York. Aaron Gordon and Nikola Vucevic scored 26 points apiece for Orlando, which lost for the third time in its past 11 games.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

An oil pumpjack is seen in Velma, Oklahoma
FILE PHOTO: An oil pumpjack is seen in Velma, Oklahoma U.S. April 7, 2016. REUTERS/Luc Cohen

February 27, 2019

By Henning Gloystein

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Oil prices rose on Wednesday after a report of declining crude inventories in the country and as producer club OPEC seemed to stick to its supply cuts despite pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures were at $56.02 per barrel at 0100 GMT, up 52 cents, or 0.9 percent, from their last settlement.

International Brent crude futures were at $65.55 per barrel, up 34 cents, or 0.5 percent from their last close.

U.S. crude oil inventories fell by 4.2 million barrels in the week to Feb. 22, to 444.3 million barrels, the American Petroleum Institute (API) estimated in a weekly report on Tuesday.

Official data will be released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) after 1800 GMT.

Oil markets have generally received support this year from supply curbs by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), which together with some non-affiliated producers like Russia, known as OPEC+, agreed late last year to cut output by 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd) to prop up prices.

And the group has indicated it will continue to withhold supply despite pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump this week to stop artificially tightening markets.

“Crude oil has been rising lately, not due to strong growth and rising demand but primarily due to a politically orchestrated cut in production from OPEC and friends,” said Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Denmark’s Saxo Bank.

Despite this, oil remains in ample supply as U.S. crude oil production has risen by more than 2 million bpd over the past year, to a record 12 million bpd, and because demand growth is low because of a global economic slowdown and improving energy efficiency across industries.

“The OPEC+ production cuts have … so far failed to create the tightness needed to support a continued rally,” Hansen said.

(Reporting by Henning Gloystein; Editing by Joseph Radford)

Source: OANN

David Hookstead | Reporter

Kyler Murray continues to crank up the momentum heading into the combine and draft.

According to rankings from NFL.com writer Daniel Jeremiah, the Oklahoma Sooners Heisman winner is the top quarterback in the draft and 14th best prospect overall. Dwayne Haskins follows as the second best QB and 18th best overall. (RELATED: Former Ohio State Quarterback Dwayne Haskins Spends Time With Johnny Manziel)

Everything really seems to be coming together nicely for Murray right now. I remember a few months ago when people honestly thought Murray couldn’t ball out in the NFL.

Now, he’s ranked in the top half of the first round. For those of you who listen to me, this isn’t a surprise at all. I’ve been routinely saying how Murray has all the athleticism necessary to tear up the NFL. His only problem is that he’s a little short.

I still think we should also not write off the possibility the Cardinals take him first overall. I know the organization is saying they’re committed to Rosen, but things change all the time.

You’re foolish to think they’re at least not having the conversation. I can promise you beyond a shadow of a doubt that they are.

The draft is two months away, and I think Murray will only continue to make more noise as time goes by. All the people who never gave him a chance must feel pretty silly right about now.

Source: The Daily Caller

Democratic 2020 U.S. presidential candidate Warren speaks at Plymouth State University in Plymouth
FILE PHOTO: Democratic 2020 U.S. presidential candidate and U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) speaks at Plymouth State University in Plymouth, New Hampshire, U.S., February 23, 2019. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

February 25, 2019

By James Oliphant

PLYMOUTH, N.H. (Reuters) – Bernie Sanders’ entry into the 2020 presidential race has complicated fellow liberal Elizabeth Warren’s bid for the Democratic nomination, a path that runs straight through New Hampshire.

Sanders, a U.S. senator from neighboring Vermont, retains a strong following in the state where he trounced Hillary Clinton by more than 20 percentage points in the 2016 presidential contest.

An Emerson College opinion poll of New Hampshire voters released on Saturday showed Sanders to be the top choice of respondents with 27 percent of the vote. Warren, a senator from neighboring Massachusetts, was far behind at 9 percent – a worrisome number given many New Hampshire voters are familiar with her.

But as Warren, 69, returned to the early voting state over the weekend for the second time this month, there were signs she could be chipping away at Sanders’ support a year before the New Hampshire primary election.

Some New Hampshire residents who voted for Sanders last time told Reuters they now were leaning toward Warren. Some said the 77-year-old Sanders’ political window had closed. Others said they wanted to see a female nominee.

“Bernie lost his shine,” said Candace Moulton, 36, who attended Warren’s campaign event in Manchester, New Hampshire. “I think we’re really ready to have a woman president, to be frank.”

New Hampshire often has been where presidential aspirations are solidified. While the Iowa caucuses serve as the first test of a candidate’s strength, New Hampshire holds the first party primary, and has been a state where a contender can build momentum, salvage a campaign or reach the end of the road.

Ten Democrats have already declared their candidacy for the party’s nomination, and more are expected to join the contest. The winner will likely face Republican President Donald Trump in the general election in November 2020. [nL1N20E0EH]

New Hampshire’s primary traditionally has favored candidates with ties to the region, making it important for Sanders and Warren to target. Both are progressives with similar policy platforms that include providing universal health care coverage and raising the minimum wage.

Dante Scala, a professor of political science at the University of New Hampshire, said he expects the presidential field to narrow significantly by the time the primary comes.

“There’s a good likelihood that New Hampshire will be framed as a Sanders-Warren competition with one ticket out,” he said.

Should Warren fail to win Iowa, New Hampshire becomes a “must-win,” Scala said. “It’s hard to see her lasting if she can’t win here.”

Former Vice President Joe Biden could muddy things further if he mounts a bid. Biden placed second in the Emerson poll, and his high name recognition with voters could give him a boost.

FRIENDLY TERRITORY

Warren campaigned in New Hampshire as if she were a local.

“You guys know me,” she told a gathering of 1,000 state party leaders and activists in Manchester on Friday. She followed up by speaking to a full hall in Plymouth on Saturday.

On this swing, Warren played up her personal story over policy, talking about her family’s struggles growing up in Oklahoma and the challenges she faced as a young mother.

After the Plymouth event, Nancy Chandler, 84, said Warren won her support with a fiery speech where she talked about wanting “big, systemic change” and fighting for the middle class.

“I think the bus has passed,” Chandler of Warren, New Hampshire, said of Sanders.

Liz Alcauskas, 74, of Manchester, said many of Sanders’ ideas were important, but she planned to vote for a different Democrat in next year’s election.

“I would like to not have an old, white man be president,” she said. “It’s someone else’s turn now.”

Even some of Sanders’ most loyal supporters are unsure of him this time. Andru Volinsky, a member of Sanders’ 2016 steering committee in the state, said “my first inclination is towards Bernie, but I haven’t ruled out a handful of others.” 

The home-field advantage enjoyed by Sanders and Warren has sparked speculation that other candidates may compete less intensely in New Hampshire, focusing instead on other early states.

Senator Kamala Harris of California made her first campaign trip to the state earlier this month and insisted she would be an active presence there. But she had made a point of visiting South Carolina, with its large swath of African-American voters, before New Hampshire.

Harris likely will also concentrate on gaining the majority of support from the millions of voters in her home state, which has its primary in early March but will allow early voting to begin around the time of the New Hampshire contest.

Raymond Buckley, chairman of the New Hampshire Democratic Party, said other candidates cannot afford to write the state off.

“In 2020, we have such an immensely diverse group of candidates, in every sense of the word, that it’s dangerous to make any assumptions about how the primary will turn out,” Buckley said.

There remains room in the state for Warren’s support to grow. Her Plymouth event was filled with undecided voters.

“I feel very wide open right now. I feel like I could support anyone,” said A.J. Coppola, 32, from Thornton, New Hampshire. “I’m inclined to the person who is really passionate, who feels like they have energy behind them.”

(Reporting by James Oliphant; Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Grant McCool)

Source: OANN

Twenty-three former Republican members of Congress have written a letter to current GOP members urging them to pass a joint resolution 'terminating the emergency declared" by President Donald Trump.

In the letter, published Monday by Politico, the lawmakers said that no matter what their policy preferences were or "how deep our loyalties to presidents or party leaders," lawmakers take an oath to put the United States and its Constitution first.

"We who have signed this letter are no longer Members of Congress, but that oath still burns within us," the letter said. "That is why we are coming together to urge those of you who are now charged with upholding the authority of the first branch of government to resist efforts to surrender those powers to a president."

The former lawmakers point out that in Article 1 of the Constitution, section 9, it is stated that the power of the purse rests with Congress.

The second argument asks how much members of Congress are willing to undermine the Constitution "to advance a policy outcome that by all other legitimate means is not achievable."

The letter was signed by former Reps. Steve Bartlett, Texas; Douglas Bereuter, Nebraska, Sherwood Boehlert, New York; Rodney Chandler, Washington; William Clinger Jr., Pennsylvania; Tom Coleman, Missouri;  Mickey Edwards, Oklahoma; David Emery, Maine; Nancy Johnson, Connecticut; James Kolbe, Arizona; James Leach, Iowa; John LeBoutillier, New York; Pete McCloskey, California; Thomas Petri, Wisconsin; Claudine Schneider, Rhode Island; Christopher Shays, Connecticut; Peter Smith, Vermont; Alan Steelman, Texas.

Former Sens. John Danforth, Missouri; Chuck Hagel, Nebraska; Gordon Humphrey, New Hampshire; Richard Lugar, Indiana; Olympia Snowe, Maine, also signed the letter.

Source: NewsMax

NBA: Utah Jazz at Oklahoma City Thunder
Feb 22, 2019; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Paul George (13) celebrates after scoring against the Utah Jazz during the second half at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

February 23, 2019

Paul George scored 45 points, including a floater with less than a second left in the second overtime, to lift the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 148-147 win over the visiting Utah Jazz on Friday night.

The Jazz led by one when George grabbed a rebound off a missed shot by Utah’s Joe Ingles with 10 seconds left. George kept the ball until he drove into the lane before releasing the high floater that went cleanly through the net.

Russell Westbrook’s NBA-record streak of 11 consecutive triple-doubles came to an end when he was called for his sixth foul on a charge with 1:09 remaining in the first extra session. Westbrook finished with 43 points, 15 rebounds and eight assists. He hit a season-high six 3-pointers.

Donovan Mitchell led Utah with 38 points, going 14 of 35 from the field.

Raptors 120, Spurs 117

Kawhi Leonard had 25 points and scored the go-ahead dunk after a steal with 15.1 seconds remaining as host Toronto defeated his former team, San Antonio.

Former Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan had 23 points and eight assists in his first game in Toronto since his offseason trade to the Spurs. Marco Belinelli added 21 points on five 3-pointers for San Antonio.

Pascal Siakam added 22 points and six assists for the Raptors, and Serge Ibaka contributed 13 points and 15 rebounds.

Nuggets 114, Mavericks 104

Visiting Denver shook off some rust before drilling Dallas with a third-quarter barrage en route to a victory.

The Nuggets trailed for much of the first half against the Mavericks, who played without Luka Doncic. The rookie sensation is day-to-day due to a sore right knee.

Nikola Jokic posted a team-high 19 points along with 13 rebounds and eight assists for Denver, and Paul Millsap had 17 points and 13 rebounds. Dallas rookie Jalen Brunson, starting for Doncic, finished with a game-high and career-best 22 points.

Bulls 110, Magic 109

Lauri Markkanen hit two free throws with 1.5 seconds remaining to give Chicago a road victory that snapped Orlando’s five-game winning streak.

The Bulls were down by one when Markkanen was fouled on a 3-point attempt. After missing the first attempt, Markkanen sank the next two free throws to put the Bulls ahead, and the Magic could not get a shot off before the buzzer at the other end.

Markkanen led Chicago with 25 points and 11 rebounds, and Zach LaVine had 22 points and six assists. Evan Fournier had 22 points, and Nikola Vucevic added 19 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists for Orlando.

Pistons 125, Hawks 122

Thon Maker drilled a tiebreaking 3-pointer with 17.1 seconds remaining, and visiting Detroit held on to beat Atlanta.

Maker took a pass from Reggie Jackson and calmly made the trey, his third of the night, giving him nine points for the game. Jackson had 32 points, five rebounds and eight assists as the Pistons won for the fifth time in six games.

Atlanta, which has lost five of its past six, got 30 points and 10 assists from Trae Young.

Pacers 126, Pelicans 111

Tyreke Evans gave Indiana the lead for good with a 3-pointer late in the third quarter and the Pacers scored the first eight points of the final period to begin to pull away from New Orleans in Indianapolis.

In winning for the seventh time in their past eight games, the Pacers led for a total of just 14 seconds before Evans hit his tiebreaking 3-pointer with three seconds remaining in the third period for a 97-94 lead. Wesley Matthews hit six 3-pointers to account for a majority of his team-high 24 points for Indiana.

Embattled big man Anthony Davis had 15 points and eight rebounds for the Pelicans but was limited to just 20 minutes.

Timberwolves 115, Knicks 104

Reserve Derrick Rose scored 20 points as Minnesota overcame the absence of All-Star center Karl-Anthony Towns to earn a victory over New York, which had its team-record home losing streak reach 18 games.

Towns was placed in the NBA’s concussion protocol before the game and missed the first game of his four-year career. He was involved in a traffic accident in the Minneapolis area Thursday when he was headed to the airport. Taj Gibson started for Towns and added 19 points and 10 rebounds for Minnesota.

The Knicks tied the 2013-14 Philadelphia 76ers for the second-longest home skid in NBA history. New York, which got 20 points apiece from Allonzo Trier and Damyean Dotson, lost for the 19th time in its past 20 games overall.

Hornets 123, Wizards 110

Kemba Walker had 27 points, 11 assists and five rebounds, and Charlotte snapped a two-game losing streak with a victory over Bradley Beal and visiting Washington.

The Hornets trailed by as many as 12 in the first quarter, but they regrouped to lead at halftime and then pushed the lead up to 16 in the third quarter. Beal put on a shooting display and finished with 46 points, five shy of his career high. He was 16 of 25 from the field with four 3-pointers.

The Hornets shuffled their lineup for the first time all season with forward Miles Bridges getting his first career start, guard Jeremy Lamb going to the bench, and Nicolas Batum moving from forward to guard. The move worked, as Batum scored 20, Lamb 16 and Bridges 14.

Clippers 112, Grizzlies 106

Reserve forward Montrezl Harrell scored 19 of his 30 points in the first half, and Danilo Gallinari added 23 as visiting Los Angeles built a big early lead, then held on to beat Memphis.

Lou Williams scored 18 points off the bench for the Clippers, who won for the fourth time in their past six games, with five of those contests on the road.

Mike Conley scored 25 points and handed out 10 assists, and Joakim Noah added a season-high 22 points plus 11 rebounds for Memphis.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

NBA: All Star-Media Day
Feb 16, 2019; Charlotte, NC, USA; Team Lebron forward Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Pelicans (23) speaks during the NBA All-Star Media Day at Bojangles Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

February 22, 2019

New Orleans forward Anthony Davis will play in Friday’s game at Indiana, Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry confirmed Thursday.

In the final game before the All-Star break on Feb. 14, Davis left the Pelicans’ victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder with a shoulder contusion. Davis played five minutes in the All-Star Game for Team LeBron and scored five points before taking himself out of the game as a precaution.

Davis, who requested a trade last month, is averaging 28.1 points, 12.9 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 2.5 blocked shots per game this season.

The NBA has denied reports that the league threatened to fine the Pelicans $100,000 per game if the team chooses to sit a healthy Davis.

–Chandler Parsons is set to take the floor for the Memphis Grizzlies on Friday, head coach J.B. Bickerstaff announced, and it will be only the fourth game of the season for the forward.

Parsons played in the first three games of the season, but has not seen action since Oct. 22, when he played just six minutes and did not score against the Utah Jazz. He had a partial meniscus tear in his left knee, which was originally believed to be bad enough to keep him out the entire season.

The Grizzlies could use as many minutes as Parsons can give them in Friday’s home game against the Los Angeles Clippers. Marc Gasol was moved to the Toronto Raptors at the trade deadline earlier this month and forward Kyle Anderson is not expected to play Friday because of a shoulder injury.

–Lowering the draft-eligible age requirement in the NBA from 19 to 18 is one step closer to reality after the league submitted a proposal to the National Basketball Players Association, USA Today reported.

The report, citing a source, also indicated that the union and executive director Michele Roberts plan to review the proposal Monday. The timing, according to USA Today, does not coincide with the knee injury suffered Wednesday night by Duke freshman Zion Williamson, the expected No. 1 pick on the 2019 NBA Draft.

The reported proposal is the first step in making the change by the 2022 draft. Players would be allowed to enter the NBA right out of high school.

–While LeBron James’ exploits on the basketball court have always been worth watching, now his HBO show “The Shop” is also earning must-see status.

The second season of James’ show, which will debut March 1, is scheduled to have both Anthony Davis, who has said he would like to be traded from the New Orleans Pelicans, and wide receiver Antonio Brown, who is trying to work his way off the Pittsburgh Steelers’ roster.

James and co-host Maverick Carter reportedly filmed a segment for the show with Davis this past weekend amid All-Star Game festivities.

–Charlotte Hornets forward Frank Kaminsky is trying to secure a buyout to become a free agent, Sporting News reported.

The No. 9 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, Kaminsky is averaging a career-low 5.2 points and 10.8 minutes per game during his fourth season with Charlotte.

First-year Hornets head coach James Borrego has kept the 7-footer out of the lineup in 31 of the team’s first 57 games. Since playing 16-plus minutes against the Dallas Mavericks on Jan. 2, Kaminsky has appeared in only four of Charlotte’s last 20 games for a total of about 26 minutes.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN


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