With the responsibilities of being a parent and working a full-time job, I rarely get the opportunity to keep up with the sports news on my days off. However, an interesting argument caught my eye about two weeks ago on ESPN’s First Take. One of the topics that was discussed was which big man would the panelists prefer to have on their team for this year only – Blake Griffin or Tim Duncan? While Griffin may be the answer that rushes to the mind first, I will offer a brief comparison of the two and show why Duncan should not be dismissed so easily.
Let’s start with Blake Griffin. He is a heck of a talent and presents match-up problems for just about any person who guards him. Griffin is capable of putting up a double-double on a nightly basis and is a great finisher around the rim. However, the one limitation in Griffin’s game is he has yet to develop a jump shot. So, if an opponent is able to stay in front of him and force him to take perimeter shots, it limits some of his overall effectiveness. Once Griffin becomes a more versatile player, he will definitely be one of the best big men the league has ever seen.
Tim Duncan may be in the twilight of his career, but the guy knows how to win. He has four titles and is still a presence offensively and on the glass as well. Most big men are capable of scoring around the basket, but Duncan also has a nice mid-range game as well and can hit the bank shot with the best of them. In addition to that, I would also give Duncan the edge in crunch time because he has hit a number of game-winning shots for the San Antonio Spurs during his career. There is no mistaking the importance of Manu Ginobli, Tony Parker and even Bruce Bowen, but if there was no Tim Duncan on the roster, the Spurs would not have won four titles over the past 14 years.
If this discussion was about which player would I prefer to have on my team over the next few years, the answer is definitely Blake Griffin because he is the younger player. However, if a championship was on the line today and I had to decide which of these players I want to anchor my team in the late stages of the game, Tim Duncan is my choice hands down.
Kings, NBA Announce Start of Joint Investigation into Allegations Against Luke Walton
The Sacramento Kings and the NBA have announced that they have started a join investigation into the allegations of sexual assault made by
Kelli Tennant, a former host on Spectrum SportsNet LA, in a civil suit filed against new head coach Luke Walton from alleged incidents back in 2014.
“The Kings and the NBA take these allegations very seriously and will collaborate to conduct a complete and thorough investigation,” the team and league said in a statement.
The Kings’ investigation will be led by Sue Ann Van Dermyden, the founding partner of Sacramento law firm Van Dermyden Maddux, and Jennifer Doughty, a senior associate attorney at the firm, while the league’s investigation will be led by Elizabeth Maringer, the league’s senior vice president and assistant general counsel, integrity and investigations.
Tennant held a news conference earlier this week to comment on the allegations to which Walton’s attorney responded by calling the allegations “baseless” and calling Tennat “an opportunist”.
Walton became the head coach of the Sacramento Kings immediately following his dismissal as head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers earlier this month.
Former NBA Player Sebastian Telfair Convicted in Gun Case, Faces 15 Years in Prison
Former NBA player and once highly touted young prospect Sebastian Telfair has been convicted of possessing a firearm and could face up to 15 years in prison, according to TMZ Sports.
Telfair, 33, was busted back in June 2017 in Brooklyn, New York after cops found several weapons in his possession during a traffic stop.
Telfair, a high school phenom, played for the Boston Celtics, Portland Trail Blazers, Los Angeles Clippers, Minnesota Timberwolves, Oklahoma City Thunder, Toronto Raptors, and Phoenix Suns, among others, throughout his 12 seasons in the NBA, but many believe that he never reached his full potential.
Telfair plead not guilty and tried to fight back the charges, but a jury found him guilty on Wednesday of felony criminal possession of a weapon.
Telfair, who could face up to 15 years in prison, is scheduled back in court in June for sentencing.
Sports Reporter Suing Kings’ Luke Walton for Sexual Assault Allegations
Sacramento Kings new head coach Luke Walton is already in the news, but for all the wrong reasons, and he has hired attorney Mark Baute to defend him against the allegations of sexual battery made by sports reporter Kelly Tennant, who is suing Walton.
According to TMZ Sports, Walton and his legal team are blasting the accuser, and Baute issued the following statement;
“Luke Walton retained me to defend him against these baseless allegations,” Baute said.
“The accuser is an opportunist, not a victim, & her claim is not credible. We intend to prove this in a courtroom.”
According to the suit, Tennant, who worked as a reporter for Spectrum SportsNet and SportsNet LA, claims that while Walton was an assistant coach for the Golden State Warriors, he asked her to come and meet him at the Casa Del Mar Hotel in Santa Monica, California, to drop off a book she had published.
Tennant says that she asked Walton to write the forward in her book due to a business relationship that the two had had for several years.
Upon arriving at Walton’s hote, he conviced her to come up to his room so that the two could “catch up” and upon arriving in his room Walton pinned her to the bed and placed his hips and legs over her body, forcing kisses on her neck, face, and chest.
Tennant claims that she screamed for him to stop and attempted to break free, but Walton held her down, groped her breasts and groin, and rubbed his erection on her leg.
Tennant claims she was “in shock and fear. She was afraid she was about to be raped,” the suit states.
Additionally, Tennant claims that when Walton finally stopped and released her he escorted her out of the hotel room as if nothing ever happened and she claims that “He smiled, laughed again and made the disturbing statement, ‘Good to see you,'”
The disturbing behavior allegedly continued while Walton was the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers back in May 2017, and Tennant claims that Walton once greeted her by uttering “vulgar, guttural sounds at her” and said, “mmmm … you’re killing me in that dress.”
The Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers, and the Sacramento Kings all stated that they had no knowledge of the alleged incident during Walton’s tenure.
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