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Tuesday, March 20, 2018


Trae Young says he will enter NBA Draft

Trae Young

Trae Young’s incredible freshman season at Oklahoma will be his only season with the Sooners.

In an essay he wrote for ESPN by way of Adrian Wojnarowski, Young revealed on Tuesday that he has decided to enter the NBA Draft. The 19-year-old reflected on his life and basketball career.

“I’ve been preparing most of my life to join the NBA, and that time has come for me now,” Young said. “After an unforgettable year at the University of Oklahoma, I will enter the June NBA draft and fully immerse myself in the pursuit of a pro basketball career.

“… I don’t pretend to be ready to play in the NBA today, but I am determined to do what I’ve always done: invest in the work to prepare for the league and the incredible challenges it presents. I’m going to start training immediately for the draft, building up strength throughout my body, sharpening my skills and studying the best of the best.”

Young averaged 27.4 points and 8.8 assists per game this season, and he is expected to be a lottery pick. Oklahoma lost to Rhode Island in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, but Young’s stock is probably as high as it will get. Despite what his father recently said about the possibility of Young turning pro, now seems like the best time.

Joel Embiid ready to pounce on writer who doubted 76ers

Joel Embiid 76ers

Not a single one of us is safe from Joel Embiid’s troll game, as one prominent media figure learned the hard way on Monday.

NBA writer and Twitter personality Rob Perez (a.k.a. World Wide Wob) tweeted a bold claim before the season began, anticipating that Embiid’s Philadelphia 76ers would not surpass their Vegas over-under of 42.5 wins.

Fast-forward roughly seven months later. The Sixers knocked off the Charlotte Hornets on Monday by the final of 108-94 for their 39th victory of the season. With the 43-win mark now very much in striking distance, Embiid decided to remind Perez of his tweet from back in August by liking it.

You can see the tweet for yourself under Embiid’s “likes” section on Twitter.

The Sixers only need to go 4-9 in their remaining 13 regular season games to reach 43 victories, so it looks like Perez can preemptively consider himself the latest victim of Embiid and his amazing memory.

Spurs fans give Zaza Pachulia harsh treatment

Zaza Pachulia

Almost a year has passed since his incident with Kawhi Leonard last postseason, but Zaza Pachulia is still Public Enemy No. 1 in San Antonio.

Pachulia’s Golden State Warriors played the Spurs in San Antonio on Monday, and the seven-footer was given quite the brutal treatment by the home crowd. The Mercury News’ Mark Medina detailed how Spurs fans showered Pachulia with far more than the usual boos, jeering him when he touched the ball and even going so far as to laugh and applaud at his in-game missteps.

As hinted at above, Pachulia has been reviled by the San Antonio faithful ever since he appeared to step underneath Spurs star Kawhi Leonard in last year’s Western Conference Finals. It also doesn’t help that Leonard has yet to return to form ever since, be it from that injury or from various others.

Granted, the Spurs got the 89-75 victory over the short-handed Warriors on Monday, and Pachulia finished with a mere six points and three rebounds. That might not be enough to appease the local fans though, as they probably would have preferred for Pachulia to never have been let back into the city.

Draymond Green exits Warriors game with pelvic contusion

Draymond Green

The Golden State Warriors cannot seem to stay healthy.

Draymond Green left Monday night’s Warriors game against the San Antonio Spurs with what the team termed a pelvic contusion. Luckily the X-rays were negative.

Green was nailed in the hip/groin area by Danny Green, who was going up for a layup in the second quarter.

Green did not return after that.

Draymond missed a game last week with a shoulder injury but has since returned to action. The Warriors are without Steph Curry (ankle), Klay Thompson (thumb) and Kevin Durant (ribs). Being without Green makes them hardly resemble Warriors we know.

Joe Thomas gets massive hug from LeBron James at Cavs game

Joe Thomas LeBron James

Joe Thomas was honored at Monday night’s Cleveland Cavaliers game and received quite a surprise.

The longtime Cleveland Brown announced his retirement last week. He attended Monday’s Cavs-Bucks game and was honored with a video and standing ovation during a timeout. But then the best surprise of all came when LeBron James went over to give him a hug:

Thomas was thrilled when James tweeted about him after he retired. Imagine how he’ll feel about getting that kind of respect from The King.

Jordan Clarkson has bizarre take on dinosaurs

Jordan Clarkson

Jordan Clarkson appears to be filling the intellectual vacuum that Kyrie Irving left behind in Cleveland.

In an appearance Monday on UNINTERRUPTED’s “Road Trippin’ Podcast,” the Cavaliers guard was being interviewed by co-hosts Allie Clifton and Randy Mims (a.k.a. DJ Montage) when he was told that Mims did not believe in dinosaurs. Clarkson then proceeded to articulate his own bizarre take on the prehistoric creatures.

“I don’t believe in dinosaurs either though,” said the 25-year-old. “Well no, I actually do. I believe that — alright this is going to get a little crazy, alright. So I’m going to take y’all a little left on this. OK so, y’all know how we got dogs and stuff, right? So, I think there were bigger people in the world before us, and like the dinosaurs was they pets.

“Oh you look at a dinosaur. They got to be three times bigger than them,” Clarkson added when asked how big he believed these supposed people were.

There doesn’t appear to be a lot of archaeological basis to Clarkson’s claims — per the United States Geological Survey, dinosaurs ranged anywhere in height from 3.3 to 39.4 feet. So unless you believe that megahumans anywhere from 10 to 118 feet tall used to roam the earth with no apparent fossil records of their existence, Clarkson doesn’t exactly make the most convincing argument.

Then again, it was on this very same podcast that Irving, an ex-Cavs guard in his own right, first made his own outlandish planetary claims. Thus, maybe Clarkson is simply assuming the role of Uncle Drew’s spiritual successor here.

Report: Tyronn Lue hoping to return to Cavs well before playoffs

Tyronn Lue

Tyronn Lue announced on Monday that he is taking a leave of absence from the Cleveland Cavaliers to focus on his health, but the coach is reportedly hoping to be back on the bench in time for the postseason.

Sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski that the plan as of now is for Lue to return to the Cavs “well before the start of the playoffs.” The team is hoping he will be out days rather than weeks, with the postseason set to start in less than a month.

Lue, who missed the second half of Saturday’s game because he felt ill, has been dealing with chest pains and other symptoms. ESPN’s Dave McMenamin cited one example of what the 40-year-old has been going through.

Wojnarowski adds that Lue has considered leaving the team on at least two other occasions this season. The first was early on, but he did not want to give off the impression that he was taking time off because the team was losing so many games. The second was near the trade deadline, but Lue did not want to leave immediately after a roster overhaul.

The Cavs are 40-29 and have lost seven of their last 13 games. Lue had a tense exchange with LeBron James during a game last week.

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