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y, but Cleveland atoned for it
08-22-2016, 08:01 AM
Poruka: #1
y, but Cleveland atoned for it
TORONTO - When Rudy Gay was traded just over a week ago, he left the Raptors with 18.6 shots and 35 minutes to be redistributed nightly. He also left them with a vacancy in their starting lineup. So far, sophomore Terrence Ross has been the primary beneficiary. "It [is] probably the biggest opportunity of my career," the Raptors second-year guard said of his new role in the teams starting five. "Just taking advantage of it [and] making sure I capitalize on things is big for me." Ross promotion is one that came together organically in the aftermath of the Gay trade. He had been clamouring for more playing time, according to Casey, but Ross insists he never formally asked the coach to start. "I kind of just knew when Rudy left it was kind of like, okay we only have me and Landry [Fields] so one of us is going to start," he recounted after Monday mornings practice. "So either way, [I was] going to get big minutes. I just knew it was an opportunity for me to go out there and show what I can do." On the eve of the trade, Casey opted to start the more experienced Fields at the three-spot. Fields played 31 scoreless minutes in Los Angeles that night and has logged less than 20 minutes in three games since. Ross, the next man on the Raptors depth chart, got the call after that. Playing 38 minutes - the most of his career - in his first start of the season Tuesday, Ross earned mixed reviews. He was inconsistent, the ongoing theme of his 95-game NBA career, and as a result, Casey was hesitant to commit to him as the teams starter going forward. "Well see," the Raptors coach replied, asked about Ross future with the first unit at that time. Three days later, Ross earned a second start despite a pre-game slip up in which Casey suggested he might be a better long-term fit playing with Greivis Vasquez in the second unit. Whatever the message was, it was received. Ross responded with 24 points - two off his career high - on 10-of-16 shooting on Friday. His promotion was not intended to be permanent, it still may not be, but Ross doesnt plan on giving it up without a fight. "I know Id do anything and everything to keep my position I have right now," the 22-year-old promised. "Its not all about scoring, its about just really doing whatever [Casey] asks and playing hard on defence, making the right passes and not having any mental lapses." "Hes got to keep it going," Casey emphasized after Ross breakout performance against the 76ers. "Hes got to continue it, thats his biggest challenge as a young player in this league, is to stay hungry, stay driven, stay consistent. Consistency is what hes fighting for, hes a talented young man but hes fighting consistency." Saturdays surprising win in Chicago, his third straight start, was another step in the right direction. Struggling with his shot, Ross went 4-for-12 from the field including 1-of-9 in the first half but found other ways to make positive contributions while on the floor. He grabbed six rebounds, recorded a career-best four assists and earned praise from his coach for his work on the defensive end. The hope for Casey and the Raptors is that Ross is beginning to develop into a more consistent and versatile player. Too often in the past, he has been rendered unusable, a liability on the court when his jump-shot wasnt falling or opposing defences would take him out of his comfort zone as a slasher. He has the tools required to be more than a one-dimensional player, now its about putting them all together. "Ive always been well aware of his athletic ability but I wasnt aware of his shooting ability," said new teammate Patrick Patterson. "Im definitely glad hes taking this starting role to the next level. Hes not satisfied with just starting, he wants to be a great basketball player and Im definitely happy for him." In DeMar DeRozan, Ross has a willing mentor, a player who has successfully overcome similar limitations. DeRozan - not unlike Ross, who is only a couple years younger - was once, in the not-so-distant past, considered to be one-dimensional. In his fifth season, DeRozan is blossoming into a complete player, averaging career highs in points, assists and three-point shooting, also growing on the defensive end. "Both of them are similar," Casey said of his two young wing players. "Similar body types, similar games, fighting to find consistency. DeMar went through the same things his first couple of years in the league. Two guys in similar positions, same skill set being around each other can only benefit." The similarities go beyond the court. Overwhelmed as a rookie, Ross, quiet and reserved by nature, is starting to open up and get more comfortable in his NBA skin. DeRozan went through the exact same evolution as a young man. Now, the 24-year-old has grown into a leader and has taken Ross under his wing. "Through training camp, every time we practice, he guards me, he goes against me and I dont let up on him," DeRozan said of Ross, sounding like a grizzled veteran. "I try to go at him as much as I can so he can take on the challenge every night when he goes out and plays against another player, it wont be as hard." "I love to see his growth and Im happy for him. One thing I try to do is keep his confidence high." "DeMar [has been] going hard at me ever since I got here so I dont even notice it anymore," said the student of his mentor. "But it helps because hes one of the top wings in the league now." Whether he remains a starter or ends up returning to the bench, Ross has been set free. Regardless of which path the bewildered Raptors take and how they choose to get there, their former eighth overall pick figures to be a vital part of the ride. This opportunity and what he is able to do with it will be his most telling challenge to date. "You just have to be more focused, you just have to be dialled in," said the Raptors newest starter. "Its tough but its fun at the same time and as long as youre having fun with it, it comes easier." KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Terry Francona likened the atmosphere at Kauffman Stadium on Tuesday to a playoff game in October. The crowd was into it. Every pitch mattered. The Indians manager is hopeful the outcome will propel his team into the actual playoffs. Asdrubal Cabrera drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning, and Cleveland rallied off the stingy Kansas City Royals bullpen for a 5-3 victory Tuesday night that evened their series. The win allowed the Indians to remain a half-game back of Texas and Tampa Bay in the AL wild-card race. The Royals are 3 1/2 games adrift after the Rangers beat the Rays earlier in the night. "That was a fun game to be part of, two teams that really want to win bad were competing a lot," Francona said. "We did enough to win." The Indians were shut out until the sixth by Yordano Ventura, who made an electric major league debut. They tied the game 3-all in the seventh off reliever Kelvin Herrera, and Cabreras double off Wade Davis (7-11) in the eighth scored Drew Stubbs and gave Cleveland the lead. Michael Bourn added a homer in the ninth to provide a cushion. "Its not always going to be pretty but we have to find a way to get it done," said Nick Swisher, whose sacrifice fly in the seventh tied it. "We have a scrappy group in here, and were not done. Were going to keep pushing because we want this. We want it bad." Cody Allen (6-1) was among six Indians relievers who kept Kansas City off the scoreboard the final 4 1-3 innings. Chris Perez handled a perfect ninth for his 25th save. "It happens sometimes," Royals catcher Salvador Perez said of the collapse. "We have to keep going, keep playing hard through the last day of the season." Ventura had already been saddled with the nickname "Ace" before Monday night, but in the first inning he looked more like a different film character: Rick "Wild Thing" Vaughn. He erratically walked Bourn on four pitches to lead off the game, and earned a roar when he finally threw a strike to Nick Swisher. The roar grew when Ventura got him to ground into a double play, and reached a crescenddo when he struck out Jason Kipnis to end the inning.dddddddddddd The 22-year-old flame-thrower settled in after that, mixing his curveball and changeup with straight gas that touched 101 mph on the radar gun at Kauffman Stadium. The Royals gave him a lead on Hosmers double in the first inning. They added two more in the third, thanks in large part to Emilio Bonifacio getting into the head of starter Corey Kluber. After a single, Bonifacio swiped second even as Kluber tried to pick him off. Bonifacio kept dancing around second base, and the Indians right-hander proceeded to walk Hosmer and Billy Butler to load up the bases. Salvador Perezs sacrifice fly and Mike Moustakass double made it 3-0. The Indians finally started to rally in the sixth. Swishers single and a pair of two-out singles by Carlos Santana and Michael Brantley made it 3-1 and drove Ventura from the game -- he received a standing ovation. Cabrera walked to load the bases before Ryan Raburn struck out. It may have been a wasted opportunity, but Cleveland atoned for it the next inning. Yan Gomes was plunked in the back by Herrera, and then Bourn ripped an RBI triple into the gap. Swisher followed with a sacrifice fly to left field that knotted the game 3-all. "The hit batsman was crucial at that point with Bourn coming up and hitting a triple right behind it," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "Those are things late in the season in games of this magnitude you really want to try to stay away from." Those are the things that set the stage for Cabrera to finish off the comeback. "Tonight was one of the more gratifying wins," Francona said. "We kept fighting, and thats a good feeling to be part of that, and watch those guys do that." Notes: The Royals made roster space for Ventura by placing 1B Carlos Pena (appendectomy) on the 60-day DL. ... Indians RHP Justin Masterson (left oblique) hopes to throw a bullpen session Friday. ... Royals affiliate Omaha beat Rays affiliate Durham 2-1 to win the Triple-A title. ... Royals LHP Bruce Chen and Indians RHP Danny Salazar meet in the series finale Wednesday. ' ' ' Wholesale Jerseys Free Shipping
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08-04-2022, 03:39 PM
Poruka: #2
RE: y, but Cleveland atoned for it
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10-04-2022, 01:18 PM
Poruka: #3
RE: y, but Cleveland atoned for it
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10-18-2022, 06:11 PM
Poruka: #4
RE: y, but Cleveland atoned for it
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