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Steve Nash feature- The Winter Soldier

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Steve Nash feature- The Winter Soldier

#SuperheroSeason

Captain Canada.

Can you feel that? Cold isn’t it? The ice hangs off his knees like it does off your cars right now. It’s been one hell of a freezing fall to February, but no one has had a winter as cold as the Los Angeles Lakers. Who knew the polar vortex would hit Southern California too freezing over everything this side of downtown STAPLES not named Clippers? This is Lob City right now as the purple and gold banners give way to the faces of the players their sister team have now taken starting with the nixing of Chris Paul. If that wasn’t bad enough the face of L.A. and the league Kobe Bryant has given way and months of the last years of his career away to two infuriating injuries, while his sidekick Pau Gasol has faced his own physical and critical injuries. Things are looking Lamar Odom bad for the rest of the franchise as even their fresh new stars like Nick Young, Wesley Johnson, Jodie Meeks and especially Xavier Henry have faced the rawness of the tough leather of the medics table. Thank God for guys like Manny Harris and Shawne Williams. Got the point or do you need Jordan Farmar and Steve Blake to miss time at the P.G. spot too? A Point Guard spot that was supposed to be led by Steve Nash, the last member of the Lakers big three. Still, even Nash has been battling a roster list of injuries that will see his 40 year frame most likely retire at seasons end and he’s been battling through the most pain. It’s colder than Sochi right now. Will we ever see the end of this bleak Winter?

Hold the front page! Steve Nash isn’t frozen up in a Steve Rodgers block of ice just yet. The cold never bothered him anyway. Coming back it’s time to thaw the first Avenger. Besides Captain Canada has risen from the cold before like a Phoenix as a double MVP Sun. His time under the yellow ball with the orange one isn’t set yet. We want to see ‘The Winter Soldier’ throw the ball up to Kobe Bryant as he flies to the rim like The Falcon. This may not be Lob City, but it’s still the town that Magic Johnson built right? The Showtime must go on, World Peace or not. No Rocket take off should ground the team Dwight Howard dumped. Jim Buss playing poker up there with Jim Murray and Chick Hearn needs to be able to bet on his Lakers. It’s time for Steve Nash to take the shield and lead the way for L.A. like he carried the torch in more ways than one for Canadian Basketball, way before the Anthony Bennett’s, Corey Joesph’s and Justin Jackson’s. Way before the 2016 All-Star Game or ‘Drake Night’. Right there at the start like the Toronto Raptors and Vancouver Grizzlies. Starting the new era of up North hoops like Basketball Buzz. Don’t just wait for the Nash documentary witness Steve in all his old glory before its too raised rafters late.

You’re going to want to see this. Like the skateboard player hair or the soccer skill dribbling. The pinpoint, pure Point passes. The mid-range shot as automatic as a free throw. He may aswell have a robotic arm. The three pointer you didn’t realise was so pure. The pace even at his age. The mastermind Magic vision on court. Serving the game like Samprass. As classic as a Jay-Z reference. The best to ever do it since Pistol Pete. Bang goes a Mavarich Marvel. The Basketball sixth sense that turns former All-Stars into veteran scientists of hardwood. The professors of the game. It’s an education for those rookies…take note! Ever since the kid born in Johannesburg, South Africa and raised in Canada with a dual British nationality (that’s where the soccer skills come from, he’s a Spurs fan and we aren’t talking about San Antonio) headed due South to the National Basketball Association of America (and a little bit Canada), Nash has bridged the gap and opened up a world of possibility to this sport. His game…and today he’s still in it.

The Santa Clara grad has still got one more year in California and he’s hoping to reignite his big three with Kobe and Gasol like the ‘Nellie Ball’ fun he had with Dirk Nowitzki and Michael Finley in Dallas or the STAT, Matrix dunking one he had with Ama’re Stoudemire and Shawn Marion in Phoenix. The perfect 10 may be bringing his former number 13 jersey luck to the Lakers, but the eight time All-Star, five time assists leader has a lot more with him to carry on his 6,3, 178 pound, giving out back as well as his depleted team and sick note status. You can’t even begin to understand the pain he’s going through, like you can’t even under stand the power he has to make it through. Basketball doctors are giving his career just weeks to live, yet the Maverick legend is defying all medical odds like the Dallas Buyers Club. I got a newsflash for you, there aint nothing that can take Stephen John Nash out in 30 days. They just don’t understand. In this sport almost nobody does, expect maybe that number 24 who tried to push his torn achillie back into place. That’s hardcore. That’s greek God stuff. If Kobe’s one of them then Nash is a gladiator. Thumbs up? Are you not entertained?

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From the corridors of his classic high school career with British Colombia to showing he is a dead cert for the hall during his MVP, quarterback run with the Suns in Arizona Nasty Nash causing mass area hysteria has been a legend in this game like ‘Illmatic’. ‘Stillmatic’ to this day he is still on top of his game, it’s just the cruel hand of injury and ignorance that’s putting him to critical shame. He can count the likes of both Barack Obama and Bobbito Garcia as devout fans and followers. With a playground skill set and the demeanour and manner to be player president it may all be about Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Kyrie Irving and whether Derrick Rose comes back, but in his day, no one was messing with Nash. His week isn’t over yet either. Quite simply he’s not only one of the best Point Guards in Basketball of all-time, but one of the sports best players ever too. The nerve or root damage aside, this guy strikes a chord, all the way down to the heart. That’s why he’s still got the soul to survive and play ball. Just to think Suns fans used to waste their breath booing him in his rookie year after being taken with the 15th pick. Now he’s beind named in the same exhales as Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Moses Malone, Larry Bird, Tim Duncan, and LeBron James. That’s most valuable.

“Frustrating” may be how Nash has described his recent suit and tie prone play but the purists still love the performance. If this game is poetry then he is the motion and his 19 point season high in Philly on his 40th birthday show he can still play amongst the grey. If this is his twilight in his time in the lime then some may be disappointed they didn’t see a Canadian homecoming with the Toronto Raptors. Still its his Pacific Division reunion with Coach D’Antoni that is special even if the “run and gun” has given way to lactic acid and shell fragments. Besides Nash isn’t ready to fade to the black of a ‘Hollywood Nights’ jersey just yet. There’s still some maple in this old leaf…save the syrup. Even if there’s no playoffs, let alone finals there’s still a season to play and for Steve Nash it may not end in a championship but it will still conclude with a celebration. This is his time and this is still his game. The legend and the legacy may not end in a ring, but some with ‘chips to shoulder could never circle around what this guys done for the Basketball world. Give him a couple more rotations and he’ll show you like instant replay all the history that is he. There’s more then ice rinks floating round Canada. There are hoops all over he country to. These are the courts that Steve Nash built. This is his foundation and its only just the beginning.

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NBA

Zero To Zero. We Could Watch Russ Vs Dame Until There’s No Time Left

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Zero To Zero We Could Watch Russ Vs Dame Until Theres No Time Left
All Or Nothing...

Phones have been checked in Philly as missing posters have been put on telephone poles for Ben Simmons’ jumper. Whilst he has started a beef with Jared Dudley of the Brooklyn Nets that even rivals the one between Kevin Durant staring down Patrick Beverley.

Welcome to the 2019 NBA playoffs.

But the real rivalry of this first round that is a real knockout is the one between Damian Lillard and Russell Westbrook. Two noughts to add up to something over nothing that could take this wild West clash between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Oklahoma City Thunder the seven game distance.

Watching these two points make one in the changing of the guard has been where amazing hardwood history happens. And whether the Thunder will reign over Rip City, or whether the city of roses will bloom over OKC all depends on whether the fuse is lit for the stick of dynamite, or the ticking click rings out. Either way whatever adds up to more on the box score will come from nothing.

But these numbers don’t lie.

A Game 3 showdown saw Russell Westbrook explode with a Kareem 33 and the Thunder poured out a 120-108 victory back home as Paul George double pumped a dunk as time expired like old ham on Dame and his men. But up 2-1 it’s not like Portland could blaze a trail to put OKC on the ropes. Even though they want to even things up and take it down to the wire for the next game and week.

D-Lill had 32. But Westbrook taunted that he was “too small” as he rocked the baby with one more point. Denis Schröeder also added 17 and a mock wrist watch tap celebration to Dame like Russell mocking Lance Stephenson’s air guitar against the Lakers. But time and Dame time again, hip-hop star Dame Dolla will play on until this all wraps up.

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Laugh now, cry later. Because this one rhymes greater than you’re average player hater. He’s notorious. He’s B.I.G. and he’s ready to die for one more chance to kick in the door, for the skys the limit.

Dame Time runs 24/7 like a 7Eleven and with the ‘Mission Impossible’ fuse of Russell Westbrook never looking like it’s going to fallout like these two, we may need another P.G. by George to settle this score as these two Point Guard number noughts look to cancel each other out until the final score and last buzzer beaten rings out.

Trash talking. Sweat soaking. Until the clock runs out on Dame Time and one of our zeroes becomes hero, we could watch these two men go the full magnificent seven.

I mean ‘Why Not’?

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NBA

Ryerson Rams’ 7-footer Tanor Ngom declares for NBA Draft

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Ryerson Rams' 7 Footer Tanor Ngom Declares For NBA Draft
Photo: Edilson J. Silva

Ryerson Rams’ 7-foot-2 center Tanor Ngom has declared for the 2019 NBA Draft.

Ngom, a native of Dakar, Senegal, enjoyed a breakthrough sophomore season with the emerging Ryerson Rams’ of Canada’s U Sports basketball program — in 21 Ontario University Association (OUA) conference games, he averaged 11.3 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.3 blocks in 19 minutes — connecting on 63.8% of his 88-138 field goal attempts.

Rams’ head coach Roy Rana discovered the late-blooming Ngom back in 2017 when he and a few of his players travelled to Senegal to take place in a basketball exchange forum.

During his freshman campaign Ngom faced adversity of coming to a new continent and adjusting to the North American culture while learning the game from one Canada’s best masterminds.

Ryerson Rams' 7 Footer Tanor Ngom Declares For Nba Draft Shooting Foul Shots
Tanor Ngom buries two free-throws against Carleton Ravens – Photo: Edilson J. Silva

Appearing in 23 games the towering bigmen contributed 5.8 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 12 minutes as the Ryerson Rams advanced to their first national title game.

Ngom’s improvement has been clearly evident in his two campaigns under Rana and features impressive mobility and athleticism for his size. A natural defensive disruptor — Ngom has worked hard to build his thin frame and expand his improving shooting touch from the charity stripe to the three-point line.

  • Ryerson Rams 7 Footer Tanor Ngom Usports Career Stats
    Ryerson Rams Tanor Ngom U Sports Conference Career Stats
  • Ryerson Rams 7 Footer Tanor Ngom Usports Playoffs Career Stats
    Ryerson Rams Tanor Ngom U Sports Playoffs Career Stats

Ngom posted a career-highs in points (24) once and grabbed 11 rebounds on multiple (3x) occasions as well as swatting away 8 shots once. Additionally, he reached double-figures scoring in 10 of his last 15 games.

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The seven-footer posted 12 points, six assists and three blocks in 24 minutes of action against the Duke Blue Devils during their much anticipated Canadian Tour. Ngom also became the first Canadian university player to participate in the prestigious Nike Elite Basketball Skills Academy — bringing the 20 best collegiate players together for a five-day premium training experience.

Unlike the recent NCAA rules changes that allow a player to test the NBA Draft process and still return to the collegiate ranks — The U Sports eligibility model and NBA Draft process aren’t quite clear at this point.

Regardless, Ngom’s path to the NBA faces a steep uphill battle — becoming the first player since Ottawa Gee-Gee’s All-Canadian guard Warren Ward broke barriers by tossing his name in the 2013 NBA Draft process — gathering buzz with a respectable workout at Impact Basketball in Las Vegas.

Canadian William Njoku (Halifax, Nova Scotia), a 6’10”, 193-pounds forward from the Saint Mary’s Huskies holds the exclusive distinction of being the last player from a Canadian university to be drafted in the modern NBA era. The Indiana Pacers selected him with the 41st pick in the second round of the 1994 NBA Draft.

Brooklyn born, Brian Heaney, a Canadian Basketball Hall of Famer and a member of the 1965 Acadia University Axemen championship team was drafted by the Baltimore Bullets with the last pick (19th round / 215 pick) of the 1969 NBA Draft. Heaney still holds the Canadian University single-game scoring record with an eye-popping 74 points against Mount Allison on February 17, 1968.

Ryerson Rams' 7-footer Tanor Ngom declares for NBA Draft
Carleton Ravens’ Phillip Scrubb blows past Wisconsin Badgers defender – Photo: Edilson J. Silva

Carleton Ravens’ all-time great point guard Phillip Scrubb — arguably Canada’s best university basketball player of all-time — never declared for the 2015 NBA Draft — but managed to play in the 2015 NBA Summer League with the Memphis Grizzlies and the Toronto Raptors.

Although not a common stake yet, it is inevitable that Canadian players declaring from Canadian universities to the NBA draft will one day, in the not very distant future become commonplace.

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