NBA

Silver over 'cowardly' Trump for Spurs coach Popovich

By Sports Desk October 14, 2019

San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said he prefers Adam Silver's leadership to that of United States president Donald Trump.

Popovich was responding to criticism from Trump, who blasted the Spurs coach and Golden State Warriors counterpart Steve Kerr last week for their responses to questions about the NBA-China controversy.

Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey issued an apology for a now-deleted tweet, that read "Fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong" amid the ongoing protests in the region.

While Popovich and Kerr unwilling to discuss the matter, NBA president Silver drew praise for his response after saying the league was "apologetic" but added that "we are not apologising for Daryl exercising his freedom of expression".

Popovich – who has been critical of Trump in the past – told reporters prior to the Spurs' 123-114 preseason loss to the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday: "[Silver] stood by our nation and its principles. That's pretty huge in these days.

"Sometimes, it's kind of Orwellian. You think we're living in a place where, 'Is this really happening?' But that comparison was pretty stark when you put our president up against those leaders when he's with them or talking to him and how he reacts compared to the way Adam Silver reacted. I was proud of him. It was great."

Asked about Trump's comments, Popovich added: "All I did was make a comparison between Adam Silver's show of principle and courage in a tough situation, as opposed to how our president reacts when in the company of authoritarian figures, whether it's Saudi Arabia, North Korea, Russia or Turkey, whatever it is.

"It comes off as really feckless, impotent, cowardly by comparison."

Related items

  • Amazed Russell Westbrook says 'nobody else' can match James Harden Amazed Russell Westbrook says 'nobody else' can match James Harden

    Russell Westbrook has been amazed by James Harden's heroics since joining the Houston Rockets, declaring "nobody else" in the NBA can match his team-mate's exploits.

    Harden came to the fore again on Monday when his 36 points, six rebounds and five assists led the Rockets to an emphatic 132-108 home win over the Portland Trail Blazers.

    Such has been his astonishing form in the early part of the 2019-20 season, that display led to his league-leading scoring average dropping to 39.2.

    Westbrook also impressed with a triple-double of 28 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists and called on fans to realise what they were witnessing from Harden was something extraordinary.

    "I think that a lot of people like to normalise greatness when you see it over and over again, but it's not normal because there's nobody else that can do it," Westbrook said, per ESPN, after the Rockets' win moved them to 11-3.

    "If it was normal, everybody would do it.

    "He's put himself in position to be one of the best offensive scorers of all time because of the way that he's able to score the ball at a high level in a variety of ways."

    Portland, who are set to sign Carmelo Anthony, dropped to 5-9 and head coach Terry Stotts joked of Harden: "For him, he had a subpar night!"

    Harden himself attempted not to dwell on his ballooning personal statistics, declaring "I just want to win games" as he took another step towards a third consecutive scoring title.

    Houston head coach Mike D'Antoni, meanwhile, was on the same page as Westbrook.

    The Rockets have won eight straight games, with Harden scoring at least 35 in all of them.

    "It's unbelievable, I'm at a loss for words," D'Antoni said of Harden. "What he does, you can't do that. I've never seen it.

    "I know I've said he's the best offensive player I've ever seen. Well, he is. I haven't coached everybody, but he's so good at what he does.

    "You might like it, you might not like it - I don't know how you don't like it. I don't think we've ever seen it like this."

    The returning Clint Capela added 22 points and 20 rebounds for the rampant Rockets, who look to make it nine in a row on the road against the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday.

  • Anthony: Trail Blazers move the perfect opportunity Anthony: Trail Blazers move the perfect opportunity

    Carmelo Anthony says joining the Portland Trail Blazers feels like the "perfect opportunity" to resurrect his NBA career.

    The veteran forward is expected to join the Trail Blazers ahead of their road match-up with the New Orleans Pelicans on Tuesday.

    Anthony, 35, has been out of the league since he was waived by the Chicago Bulls back in February and last played a game in November 2018 for the Houston Rockets.

    The 10-time All-Star is determined to grasp his opportunity now he has secured his return.

    The veteran forward said in a YouTube clip: "I always kept my eye on Portland. It just didn't work out at other times. But now it seems like a perfect opportunity.

    "I just look at that team and say, 'This is what I can bring, this is where I can help'. It can only work if all parties see it the same way.

    "What happened before is the past; I can't dwell on that. I learned from that.

    "This happened at a point of time in my life where I do have a lot of clarity and understanding of different situations, just life. My approach is totally different."Portland made the Western

    Conference Finals last season but are struggling at 5-9 this time around and lost 132-108 to the Rockets on Monday.

     

  • Carlisle salutes 'phenomenal' Doncic triple-double Carlisle salutes 'phenomenal' Doncic triple-double

    Rick Carlisle declared Luka Doncic "can do anything he wants on a basketball court" after he inspired the Dallas Mavericks to a 117-110 defeat of the San Antonio Spurs.

    The Slovenian prodigy conjured up a career-high 42 points, 11 rebounds and 12 assists in a magnificent display at American Airlines Center on Monday.

    Doncic became the second-youngest player in NBA history to rack up a 40-point triple-double, with only his idol LeBron James having achieved the feat earlier in his career.

    Mavericks coach Carlisle said: "This guy can do anything he wants to on a basketball court. He's having one of those magical runs right now.

    "It's a phenomenal thing to watch. It's a phenomenal thing to be a part of."

    Forward Doncic said: "It feels like every day there are stats you don't know about, stats that you read about. It's great to hit."

    Dallas are 8-5 after winning two in a row, while the struggling Spurs have now lost six on the spin and are languishing at 5-9.

    Spurs shooting guard DeMar DeRozan said: "When adversity hits, you can't run from it, you can't shy away from it, you can't let it get you down.

    "Try to channel that energy and put it in the right place so we can understand why we got beat."

     

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.