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Castro looms large as TNT eyes finals (September 27, 2016)
Waylon Galvez [ Source: Manila Bulletin ]

Jayson Castro of Talk ‘N Text will be a marked man in today’s game. (Manila Bulletin)

When veteran mentor Norman Black returned to professional coaching after his five-year stint as Ateneo coach, his first stint was with Talk ’N Text, a team he helped win the Philippine Cup that 2013 season.

One of the players he coached in that squad was guard Jayson Castro, already a household name in the PBA then as he bagged the Best Player of the Conference in that all-Filipino tournament.
Three seasons later, Castro has become even more dangerous.

That’s the concern of Black and the rest of his Meralco Bolts as they start their semifinal showdown against the Castro-led top seed TNT Katropa today in the PBA Governors’ Cup playoffs at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

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LeBron James on being troubled by repeated video of police shootings: "It's a scary-ass situation that if my son calls me and says that he's been pulled over that I'm not that confident that things are going to go well and my son is going to return home." David Sherman/NBAE via Getty ImagesINDEPENDENCE, Ohio -- LeBron James said he will not join San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick's protest against the way African-Americans are treated in this country and kneel during the national anthem during Cleveland Cavaliers games this season.

"Me standing for the national anthem is something I will do," James said at the Cavs' annual media day Monday. "That's who I am. That's what I believe in. But that doesn't mean I don't respect and don't believe in what Colin Kaepernick is doing. You have the right to voice your opinion, stand for your opinion, and he's doing it in the most peaceful way I've ever seen someone do something."

James has been outspoken about social issues facing the U.S. for the past several years and recognized the unrest that exists in a speech at the ESPYS this summer, alongside fellow NBA players Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade and Chris Paul. His message at the awards ceremony centered on community outreach. Kaepernick started his protest during the NFL preseason, approximately six weeks after the ESPYS speech.

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Austria looking extend SMB rotation in Game 2 (September 27, 2016)
Randolph B. Leongson [ Source: Inquirer ]

San Miguel Beermen head coach Leo Austria. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.net

San Miguel coach Leo Austria admitted it was a miscue on his part that he failed to make the most of his bench.

Fielding only eight players on Monday, a fatigued Beermen crew was dragged to a 115-108 defeat at the hands of Ginebra in Game 1 of their best-of-5 semifinals series in the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup.

“We have to include some players in the rotation because tonight we were able to use only eight players. I didn’t notice it because sa game, makikita mo na ayaw kong bumitaw sa rotation ko dahil nagma-match up kami. Maybe next game, it will be a different situation for us,” he said.

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Thompson, Ginebra not content with Game 1 win (September 27, 2016)
Randolph B. Leongson [ Source: Inquirer ]

Scottie Thompson. PBA IMAGES

With Ginebra’s three-guard combo terrorizing the open court, Scottie Thompson was once again front and center in the rally, orchestrating the Gin Kings’ huge 115-108 victory over the San Miguel Beermen in Game 1 of their best-of-5 semifinals series in the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup.

But the rookie guard shared that just like his head coach Tim Cone, he refuses to settle with the way he and his team is playing.

“Hindi pa ako satisfied kasi sabi ni coach Tim, kung naglaro kami ng maganda ngayon, dapat next game maganda pa rin,” he said.

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Anthony Davis up to 250 pounds, grows one inch since last season (September 27, 2016)
Justin Verrier [ Source: ESPN ]

NBA

There will be more to Anthony Davis this NBA season.

Davis, who was listed at 6-foot-10 last season and was measured as 6-10½ in shoes at the 2012 draft combine, said that he is now officially 6-foot-11.

"They measured us like a week and a half ago and they said I was 6-11, which I don't want to be," he told the Pelicans' in-house podcast, The Black And Blue Report. "I think 6-10's like the perfect height for me. It just doesn't sound right; 6-10 sounds perfect to me. 6-11, 7 feet. ... I don't like it.

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Millsap owns up to SMB loss in Game 1 (September 27, 2016)
Randolph B. Leongson [ Source: Inquirer ]

Elijah Millsap tries to shoot over Justin Brownlee. PBA IMAGES

Not even a late surge and a triple-double from Elijah Millsap could carry San Miguel past Ginebra in Game 1 of its best-of-five semifinals in the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup.

But the returning import made it clear the Beermen are not pressing the panic button yet.

“It’s a series,” he said, as he finished with 29 points, 14 rebounds, and 11 assists. “My team came out electrifying, we came out hitting on all cylinders.”

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76ers forward Ben Simmons said he has focused on gaining strength in preparation for his rookie year. He said he has gained 33 pounds and now weighs 250. Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images

PHILADELPHIA -- Sixers rookie Ben Simmons, the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, has drawn a lot of comparisons to Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James.

Both playmaking forwards share an agent. Now, they even weigh the same.

Simmons told reporters on Monday at 76ers media day that he has gained around 33 pounds since leaving LSU and is about 250 -- also James' listed weight.

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Ginebra rallies past San Miguel to draw first blood (September 27, 2016)
Camille B. Naredo [ Source: ABS CBN News ]

 Ginebra's Japeth Aguilar dunks. Photo courtesy of PBA Media Bureau

MANILA, Philippines – The Barangay Ginebra Kings worked their way back from a halftime deficit to rally past the San Miguel Beermen, 115-108, and take Game 1 of their best-of-five semifinals series in the 2016 PBA Governors' Cup Monday at the Araneta Coliseum.

Import Justin Brownlee was brilliant all game long, Japeth Aguilar had some spectacular moments, and Sol Mercado and rookie Scottie Thompson shone in the second half as the Gin Kings roared back from a 13-point deficit in the first half.

"To tell you the truth, in the first half, it looked like we were totally overmatched," Ginebra coach Tim Cone admitted after the contest. "I just felt like we didn't really know how hard we had to play to win a game like this, an important game like this against a big time opponent like San Miguel."

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Cavs' Mo Williams retiring; J.R. Smith absent from training camp (September 27, 2016)
Brian Windhorst [ Source: ESPN ]

Mo Williams announced his retirement after saying last week that he would be returning for his 14th season, but Cavs GM David Griffin said the team was "planning for this eventuality." AP Photo/Tony Dejak

Mo Williams surprised the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday when his agent called hours before the start of training camp to inform the team that Williams will be retiring.

After dealing with chondromalacia (chronic knee pain) last season and debating his future throughout the summer, Williams announced last week that he would return for a 14th season. He then reversed course.

Also Monday, J.R. Smith was absent as he and the Cavaliers were unable to reach an agreement on a contract. Smith has been seeking a long-term deal with the Cavs since July.

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Rosario focused on playoffs, not on Rookie of the Year (September 27, 2016)
Camille B. Naredo [ Source: ABS CBN News ]

 TNT's Troy Rosario goes for a shot against the Star Hotshots in their PBA Governors' Cup game. Photo courtesy of the PBA Media Bureau

MANILA, Philippines – The Rookie of the Year race is not in the mind of freshman forward Troy Rosario as he instead chooses to focus on TNT KaTropa's campaign in the season-ending PBA Governors' Cup.

Rosario has been the consistent leader in the Rookie of the Year race for most of the season. At the end of the quarterfinals of the third conference, he has amassed an average of 23.5 statistical points, but just behind him in the rankings is Meralco forward Chris Newsome with 23.4 SPs.

"Para sa akin, hindi ko iniisip 'yun (Rookie of the Year)," Rosario, the second pick in the 2015 PBA Rookie Draft, said Sunday after watching his collegiate team, National University, beat University of Santo Tomas in the UAAP Season 79 tournament.

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