me him for that, but hopefully he feels good abouin Einsteigerforum 02.01.2020 04:48
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ATLANTA - Paul Millsap knocked the ball away. Phil Rizzuto Jersey . Thabo Sefolosha scrambled into the corner to grab it and passed quickly to Dennis Schroder, who took off the other way.Schroder dribbled into the frontcourt and spotted Millsap already ahead of him on the wing. Millsap didnt keep the ball for long, bouncing a pass to Al Horford streaking through the lane for a thunderous dunk.That play epitomized the way the Atlanta Hawks are going right now.A stop at the defensive end. Four guys touching the ball. An easy basket.The Hawks are the biggest surprise in the NBA, leading the Eastern Conference with a 26-8 record that is the best in franchise history through 34 games. Most striking, they have won seven straight on the road, wrapping up a sweep of their West Coast road trip with a 107-98 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday night.Weve got a good group of players, who play unselfish and play hard, said second-year coach Mike Budenholzer, who learned at the knee of San Antonios Gregg Popovich and is looking to build another powerhouse in Atlanta.The Hawks have won 19 of 21, but their play over the last three weeks has been especially impressive. Atlanta has twice beaten the Clippers and LeBron James Cavaliers, sending a bit of a shockwave through the league with a 29-point blowout at Cleveland. The stretch also includes wins over Chicago, Houston, Dallas and Portland, so this is looking less and less like a fluke.The Hawks are facing all sorts of uncertainty off the court, from ongoing efforts to sell the franchise to what will become of disgraced general manager Danny Ferry. But the turmoil seems to have brought the team together, and Budenholzer — a long-time assistant with the Spurs — has instilled many of the same principles that work so well in San Antonio.Atlanta ranks among the leagues top clubs in steals and assists, scoring about two-thirds of its baskets off passes from teammates. All five starters are averaging at least 11.6 points. Theres not one true superstar, but Jeff Teague is emerging as one of the leagues best point guards, Millsap can do a bit of everything, and Horfords return after missing most of last season with an injury has been a huge boost for the inside game.Budenholzer and his staff have also gotten surprising contributions from DeMarre Carroll, who bounced around to four teams before finding a home in Atlanta, and Kyle Korver, who has proven to be a lot more than a 3-point specialist. The bench is deep, too, with players such as Schroeder, Sefolosha, Mike Scott and Pero Antic making important contributions.Sounding very much like his mentor, Budenholzer talks constantly about activity at the defensive end, pushing his players to get a hand on the ball and cut off passing lanes. The Hawks arent a pick-and-roll-focused offence like the Spurs, but they feed off their defence, run at every opportunity, and wind up with a lot of easy baskets.We know if we make plays on the defensive end, everything else will take care of itself, Teague said.Teagues development has been a huge key. He flashed plenty of potential over his first five seasons, but hes finally demonstrating the sort of consistency that Budenholzer demands. Over the last five games, the 26-year-old is averaging 23.2 points, 8.2 assists, 4.8 rebounds and 2.6 steals while shooting 52 per cent from the field.Horford and Teague are the only players whove been with the Hawks longer than three years, the roster almost totally overhauled the last two summers by Ferry. While the GM successfully turned things around in Atlanta, theres no indication hell ever return to his job after making racially charged comments about potential free agent Luol Deng.Ferry is on an indefinite leave of absence, watching from afar as the roster he built keeps piling up the wins. Budenholzer is now in charge of player personnel, though it looks as if the bulk of the work is done.Once the Hawks get to the playoffs, the lack of one dominant scorer could prove to be a weakness. It certainly cost them last season, when they squandered a chance to knock off top-seeded Indiana in the opening round.For now, its not an issue.Weve got a good group of guys in that locker room, Budenholzer said. Were playing well on both ends of the court.___AP Sports Writer Beth Harris in Los Angeles contributed to this report.___Follow Paul Newberry on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pnewberry1963 Hideki Matsui Jersey . As each game passes (each has played close with the exception of last night) it becomes clearer just how evenly matched these two teams are and how one mistake, or one bad inning, is likely to sway the result. Nick Nelson Jersey .com) - Lloyd Sam struck in stoppage time on Wednesday as Red Bull New York hung on for a crucial 1-0 win over Atlantic Cup rivals D. http://www.customyankeesjersey.com/custom-reggie-jackson-jersey-large-654i.html . -- The NFL Players Association wants to determine if the Tampa Bay Buccaneers leaked information about quarterback Josh Freeman being in the NFLs substance abuse program. DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Ricky Romero is headed back to the minors. One day after being shelled by the Detroit Tigers, the former Opening Day starter and fellow pitcher Marcus Stroman were sent to the Blue Jays minor league camp. Toronto manager John Gibbons said both pitchers needed more work. Gibbons tried to soften the blow for Romero, saying the 29-year-old left-hander had pitched well earlier in the spring and was moving in the right direction after two troubled seasons. "We really like what he did this camp," Gibbons told reporters Wednesday prior to a Grapefruit League game against the Philadelphia Phillies. "Just go down there and polish it up." Stroman, a 2012 first-round draft choice who pitched in Class-AA last season, managed just one out in Tuesdays 18-4 loss to the Detroit Tigers. The 22-year-old right-hander gave up seven runs on six hits. "He was kind of the odd man out," said Gibbons. "He had trouble throwing strikes (Tuesday). Hes got to do that." Romero, who is due to make US$7.75 million this season, walked five and threw two wild pitches in 2 2/3 innings. Unofficially he threw 57 pitches, 23 for strikes. Gibbons said Romero needs to do "whatever it takes" to throw strikes. He was an all-star in 2011 when he went 15-11 with a 2.92 earned-run average. In 2012, he slumped to 9-14 with a 5.77 ERA and things got worse in 2013, when he saw action in just four games in the majors with an 0-2 record and 11.05 ERA. He spent most of last season in the minors where he went 5-8 with 5.52 ERA. "Its a long road. You never know if a guys going to make it back from that or not," said Gibbons. "But he was starting to show the signs of it. (Tuesday) he wasnt as good and it just kind of reaffirmed, Hey start him down there, but hes moving in the right direction." Romero had been a feel-good story earlier in spring training. Gibbons called him "the big talk of camp" last week after giving up one run in seven innings for an ERA of 1.29 in three appearances. But Romero fell back to earth Tuesday in Lakeland. He gave up three runs on three hitts with five walks, a hit batsman and two wild pitches. Custom Yankees T-shirts. "Weve taken too many steps forward to dwell on this," Romero said philosophically afterwards. Somewhat bizarrely, he referred to a "weird weather day" in noting "the balls were a little slick and just kept coming out of my hand." It was a sunny 20-degree day at Joker Marchant Stadium. Romero has been positive this spring, making an effort to stay in the moment rather than labour in the past or worry about the future. A lot of people have been rooting for him to succeed, including his manager. "We feel for the guy," said Gibbons. "Its not just looking at results. As much work as the kids putting in, things like that -- the battles hes going through, mentally -- you root for him. You root for him extra hard. "But were encouraged. Were positive after this camp. He may look at it differently but we feel positive with what he accomplished this spring." Romero had left the clubhouse by the time the announcement was made. Gibbons said the pitcher was disappointed at the news. "And rightfully so. I cant blame him for that, but hopefully he feels good about how this spring went." Despite the positive signs, Gibbons said he always saw Romero as having an outside shot at making the team. "Personally I thought regardless of the camp he had, it would probably do him some good to start down in the minor leagues in real competition where things are different," he said. "Just to make sure hes back to where he needs to be. "Because you dont want him to come up and if hes not ready to start the season, backslides and he may never regroup. So that was kind of my thinking. But that wasnt everybodys opinion. If he proved he was ready in spring training, he might have been the guy." NOTES -- Gibbons said closer Casey Janssen felt "great" after a throwing on the mound Tuesday and will go again Friday. Hes slated to make three or four appearances before the season starts March 31 in Tampa. Janssen has been limited in action to protect against shoulder soreness. ' ' '