WebHosting Forum

hecking off mil

douhua2233 - 11-8-2018 at 02:24

The jerseys and venues will be the same Anthony Averett Color Rush Jersey , but so much has changed since the last time Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics met in the Eastern Conference finals.

Kyrie Irving was dealt to Boston in a blockbuster offseason deal for Isaiah Thomas and Jae Crowder. But following a roster upheaval in February , the Cavs were left with only five players from last year’s team that rolled past the Celtics 4-1 to earn a place in the NBA Finals.

Irving will watch this year’s rematch from the sideline after a pair of knee surgeries late in the regular season denied him an opportunity to play this postseason. It was the capstone of an injury-plagued year in Boston that also saw the seasons of Gordon Hayward and rookie Daniel Theis truncated.

The one constant has been Cleveland’s LeBron James, who at age 33 has again found another gear in the playoffs despite the different pieces surrounding him. His 34.3 scoring average in these playoffs is his highest since the 2009 postseason.

James can become the sixth player in league history to play in at least eight consecutive NBA Finals. The five others who have done so all played with the Celtics, led by Hall of Famer Bill Russell’s run of 10 straight appearances.

James hasn’t yet had a chance to reflect on his own run but says he isn’t taking anything for granted at this point in his career.

”You dream about being able to play in big games in the NBA and even when I got to the NBA that was one of my only goals to be as great as I can be, to play in big games in the NBA and be remembered and I think I’ve done that in my career,” he said. ”Just trying to add onto it while I can.”

The series starts Sunday in Boston. This is the eighth playoff matchup between the teams overall, with the Celtics leading 4-3.

The Celtics are seeking their first trip to the NBA Finals since 2010, when they got past James and the Cavs in the East semifinals.

Since Irving’s injury, Celtics coach Brad Stevens has relied heavily on veteran Al Horford and a youthful corps that includes 24-year-olds Terry Rozier and Marcus Smart, 21-year-old Jaylen Brown and 20-year-old rookie Jayson Tatum.

Horford is averaging career playoff-high 17 points per game, while carrying the leadership torch.

Rozier has flourished in a starting role since Irving was sidelined in mid-March. It’s carried over into the postseason where he is averaging 18.2 points per game. And Tatum is coming of a series against Philadelphia that saw him average 23.6 points per game – the second-highest by a Celtics rookie in franchise history.

”I feel like we more together (than last year),” Rozier said. ”Obviously guys been going down all year and it’s like you never know who’s going to down. But we found a way, we pulled together.”

As for Rozier’s prediction for the series?

”Stay tuned,” he said.

Some other things of note in the Eastern Conference finals:

BUCKEYE ROOTS

Like James, Rozier first bounced a ball in Northeast Ohio.

Rozier is from Shaker Heights, Ohio Kosuke Fukudome Jersey , a suburb on Cleveland’s east side. He’s been on James’ hoops radar since he was a high school freshman. And while Rozier has been a breakout star in these playoffs to NBA fans, James knew he would eventually shine.

”He was a confident kid then when I watched him at Shaker. And he’s a confident player now, so I’m not surprised,” James said. ”He’s gotten better and better. It was a steal when they drafted him out of Louisville, and he’s just showcasing his abilities. … So, everybody is going crazy over what he’s doing but I’m not. He’s a local guy.”

(TD) GARDEN PARTY

Boston has become a preferred spring destination for James.

After a 2-9 start to his playoff career in New England, James has won his six straight postseason games on the road against the Celtics, a streak that began with his epic 45-point, 15-rebound performance in Game 6 for Miami in the 2012 conference finals. In those six wins, James averaged 34.3 points, 9.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists.

James has averaged 30.5 points, 8.8 rebounds and 6.1 assists while going 8-9 on Boston parquet’s hardwood.

Since losing two straight series with Cleveland to Boston in 2008 and 2010, James has eliminated the Celtics four times, going 8-1 in the past two matchups.

CELTIC PRIDE

Indiana pushed Cleveland to seven games in the opening round. The Pacers were physical, resilient and confident.

The Cavs feel the young Celtics might be a greater challenge.

”Boston is better than Indiana,” Cavs forward Kyle Korver said. ”With as much respect as we have for Indiana Authentic Arden Key Jersey , obviously, they took us to seven, I think defensively Boston is elite. They’re really good. They’re always in the right spot. They have a great game plan.

”For sure the Indiana series has prepared us for the playoffs in a lot of ways. Now that we’re through that series, we’re glad.”



AP Sports Writer Tom Withers in Independence, Ohio contributed to this report.




Teddy Bridgewater can’t help but smile these days.

Even through the sweat and exhaustion that mark the blazing hot days of training camp, the New York Jets quarterback still appreciates the little things about being a professional football player.

Because he almost wasn’t anymore.

“I get excited every day I get to get my ankles taped, lace my cleats up and run out of the locker room and practice because it was taken away from me for two years,” Bridgewater said after a recent practice.

“To be able to just wake up and know you have the opportunity to continue to do something that you love doing, it’s a great feeling.”

Bridgewater has the type of perspective few players ever get, or want to get, for that matter. He was able to come back from the type of injury that would end most playing careers.

But when the Jets open their preseason schedule Friday night against the Atlanta Falcons, Bridgewater will step on the field — and probably smile some more.

And then, he’ll get under center for what will likely be his most extensive game action in almost two years.

“Right now, I am doing everything I dreamed of doing and that is waking up and continuing to play football,” Bridgewater said. “It’s a wonderful feeling. It gives me the chills right now just thinking about it, knowing how the previous two years were. But you take advantage of this opportunity. I look forward to every day.

“Some people may say Authentic Martin Fehervary Jersey , ‘This is training camp. This is the grind of things, and I can’t wait to get to the regular season, things will be easier,” but I look forward to it. You embrace the grind because it was once taken from you.”

On Aug. 30, 2016, the former Louisville star was practicing with the Minnesota Vikings when he went down with a non-contact injury. He tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee and dislocated the knee joint, and it is believed that only quick work by the team training staff and doctors saved Bridgewater’s leg.

Playing football again didn’t seem likely, given the severity of the injury. But Bridgewater never gave up believing in a big-time comeback.

“Never, never,” he said. “I had nothing but positive thoughts. I didn’t allow any negativity to even creep into my circle. I knew that if I’m negative, I’m going to have those negative thoughts and it may hinder my progress.”

So, Bridgewater approached his recovery and arduous rehabilitation with the same type of determination.

He learned to move his leg again. And walk. Then, jog. And, now, run.

Bridgewater gradually regained strength in his knee and trusted that it would hold up when he dropped back to throw a pass.

On Dec. 17, 2017 — nearly 16 months after he went down in a heap of pain and uncertainty — Bridgewater walked onto the field at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis in the fourth quarter against Cincinnati. The fans gave him a standing ovation Rashaad Penny Color Rush Jersey , and he went on to throw two passes in the Vikings’ 34-7 win, including one that was intercepted.

The stats didn’t matter. He had made it back.

Just as he always believed.

“I definitely feel like I’m good,” Bridgewater said of his health. “I’ve been working with the training staff here and we’ve been hitting it hard, and I’m excited. I’m looking forward to these upcoming preseason games and just getting out there and having fun playing football again.”

The Vikings moved on from Bridgewater during the offseason and allowed him to become a free agent. The Jets, with uncertainty at the quarterback position, signed him to a one-year deal.

The also brought back Josh McCown, the incumbent starter, and drafted Sam Darnold, the No. 3 overall pick out of USC who is considered the future of the franchise. Having them on the field with Bridgewater this summer has made for an intriguing quarterback competition.

“He has been a great team player, great in the meeting room and for the guys as well,” coach Todd Bowles said of Bridgewater. “I’ve got to say, this is the best three-quarterback combination room I’ve been around from a mental standpoint, so that is great to have.”

McCown is No. 1 on the depth chart, followed by Bridgewater and Darnold, and all three have had up-and-down moments on the field this summer. Off the field, all three quarterbacks have repeatedly talked about the camaraderie they have quickly established. And http://www.chiefsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-armani-watts-jersey , there’s a ton of respect for Bridgewater willing himself to even get back to this point.

“Obviously, he’s had a long road recovery-wise from his knee, but his mind has been on football,” McCown said. “You can tell he’s sharp and I’ve been really impressed with everything he’s done. I think the future is really bright for Teddy. I’m excited for him.”

Bridgewater has been checking off milestones for most of the past 24 months. He’s not sure how long he’ll play Friday night, but whatever he does will be another positive.

The next goal on his list, though, is yet to be determined.

“I have to sit down and think about the next milestone,” Bridgewater said. “But for now, it’s just living in the moment, enjoying this opportunity and taking advantage of it.”

.