A dozen years after being one of the young guns for the U.S. men’s basketball team, Carmelo Anthony is now one of its graybeards. The Knicks star has taken up a leadership role on and off the court as he prepares for his fourth Olympic Games. He led a town hall meeting on social issues in Los Angeles in between the team’s exhibitions NBA Jerseys against China.MORE: How Olympic field stacks up (behind U.S.) Tuesday night he took to the court in Oakland to show that he can still be a go-to guy on the international stage. He scored 20 points, including 16 in the third quarter, as USA cruised to a 107-57 win over China. Only DeMarcus Cousins (21) scored more for the U.S.”I’m just doing my part and I’m bringing my colleagues along with me. I always say that we Lebron James Shose got a platform, we have voices so we’ve got to use them,” Anthony told NBA TV after the game. “Right now this is the biggest way we can use our voice, by coming out here and representing our company, playing basketball and doing it in a fashionable way and enjoying ourselves.”Anthony’s scoring binge temporarily stole the show from Kevin Durant, who scored the first 10 points for the USA to thrill his new hometown fans. The game Ben Simmons Jerseys was played in Oracle Arena, where Durant will play as a member of the Warriors after signing a two-year contract with the team earlier this month.The crowd exploded when Durant took and made the first shot of the game, a 3-pointer that swished through the net. Durant finished with 13 points.”I knew (Monday) I was shooting that one,” Durant said with a smile. Kevin Durant and James Harden haven’t played on the same team in quite Custom NCAA Jerseys a while, but apparently they are still fond of each other. The newest member of the Warriors says no one appreciates his former Thunder teammate — except for other NBA players. MORE: 11 players ready to take over the NBA next season.”Nobody really appreciates what he does except for the players in our league,” Durant said, via the Houston Chronicle. “Everybody on the outside doesn’t really appreciate what he brings.”The two played together in Oklahoma City for Kevin Durant Shoes three seasons before Harden bolted for the Rockets. He went from being Sixth Man of the Year in 2011-12 to a four-time NBA All-Star after making the move, but Durant still doesn’t think Harden gets his due. “Anybody that can put up 29 points, seven rebounds, seven assists and not make the All-NBA team, that’s like a sin,” Durant said. “As a player and someone that played with him and a fan of the game I was Kevin Durant Jerseys (angry) because somebody is right here in front of you and you can’t appreciate him. If he were to retire tomorrow, we would have so many stories and videos about how great he is, but he’s here right now doing it. Appreciate what he brings.”Harden failed to make an All-NBA team last season despite the numbers cited by Durant. Many people were surprised by that, and Durant was clearly among them.Tony Parker reminded us Wednesday that Lebron James Jerseys he is still Tony Parker. He was playing for France and had scored all of four points near the end of a close game against Australia, when he did this:The play was pure Parker: a high-arching shot off the dribble that won a big game. Parker uses his understanding of angles as well as anyone in NBA history. He also wins as much as just about anyone in NBA history. This 76-75 France victory against Croatia in Oklahoma City Thunder Jerseys the group stage of the Rio Olympics’ men’s basketball competition reinforced who Parker always has been as well as who he is now.Parker is a four-time champion, six-time All-Star and one-time NBA Finals MVP. He did all of that for the Spurs. He Stephen Curry Jerseys is 34 and coming off a season in which he started 72 games for a team that won a franchise-record 67.Yet some wish Parker were the one retiring, rather than 40-year-old Tim Duncan. The buzz has been there for two years now: Tony Parker doesn’t quite have it anymore, the Spurs are better off with Patty Mills, the backcourt isn’t good enough to win in this environment, the NBA has moved past players like Parker, he’s not fast enough, he’s a defensive liability.The weird part is, those naysayers tend to be Spurs fans. Outsiders tend to defer when it comes to the Spurs. Gregg Popovich knows what he’s doing, and the http://www.cavaliersteamshops.com success doesn’t ever stop. The franchise has never missed the postseason in consecutive years, going all the way back to its days as the Dallas Chaparrels in the ABA. By the end of next season, the Spurs probably will have the best all-time winning percentage, surpassing even the Lakers. In short: If you’re looking on from the outside, you don’t feel compelled to nitpick at San Antonio’s absurd success.The naysayers have a few valid points, though. The Cleveland Cavaliers Jerseys Spurs inarguably have produced better without Parker on the floor. Mills, whose Team Australia beat Team France in their Olympic opener, is a better shooter in an era when floor-spacing is a premium. Last season, the Spurs were 0.7 points per 100 possessions better with Mills on the court than off, while they were 1.6 points per 100 worse with Parker on the court than off.Parker is not good at one-on-one defense, though Popovich’s schemes have worked Cheap NBA Jerseys to his advantage and prevented him from being a liability. Parker has spent his entire career using his ridiculous quickness to penetrate, find open pockets in opposing defenses and either score or force them to collapse, leading to teammates being open. He’s not as quick as he once was, though, and his assist rate and at-the-rim scoring have slipped noticeably in the past two seasons.The complaints register similar to Heat fans arguing that the team was playing Buddy Hield Jerseys better with Dwyane Wade off the court and Goran Dragic controlling the offense during last regular season. The playoffs rolled around, and Wade reminded everyone that he is still Dwyane Wade.And Parker is still Tony Parker. He’s changed his game quite a bit over the past few years, deferring offensive responsibilities to Kawhi Leonard and spending last year working on newfound pick-and-roll chemistry with LaMarcus Aldridge. Mostly, he’s become a really efficient, low-volume shooter: He made 41.5 Golden State Warriors Jerseys percent of his 3-pointers last year, taking 0.9 per game after years of being derided as an awful shooter.Low volume is the best way to describe Parker now, for the Spurs and for Team France, which he guided to its first European championship in 2013. Parker’s six points Wednesday came on five shot attempts, and he let former Spurs teammates Nando De Colo (22 points) and Boris Diaw (11 points, nine rebounds and nine assists) carry most Chris Paul Jerseys of the offensive burden.Parker makes $14.5 million next season and $15.4 million in 2017-18. The contract he signed in 2014 was a bargain; he was coming off being the starting point guard and leading scorer for the NBA champions. With the expanding salary cap, that money means he is making what a decent starter should make, and he’s at least a decent starter.There still exists a need for Tony Parker to be Tony Parker, though. Let’s hope Cavalier Steam Shop the naysayers saw that shot above. Let’s watch as Parker proves yet again next NBA season that he can provide the spark when his team needs it most.
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