By TIM REYNOLDS
Gregg Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs know they cannot erase the ache the residents of Uvalde, Texas have been feeling since Could 24.
They will, nevertheless, proceed to remind the city of 16,000 that they don’t seem to be forgotten.
Spurs are planning what they name a group influence occasion at Uvalde on October 8; particulars are nonetheless being finalized, nevertheless it appears probably your entire crew and Popovich will make the 85-mile journey from San Antonio to the place 21 individuals – together with 19 college students – have been killed at Robb Elementary Faculty by a gunman 4 months in the past.
Popovich, a five-time champion coach throughout his tenure with the Spurs and the NBA’s all-time chief in teaching wins, has typically expressed his need for harder gun management legal guidelines. He additionally spoke at an occasion in Uvalde in June, and Spurs are certainly one of many groups who’ve pledged to help the group.
The NBA beforehand introduced the “Sport for Therapeutic Fund,” created to offer “long-term help to the Uvalde group by creating and investing in trauma-focused and therapeutic take care of youth and adults. households”. The NBA, together with the NHL’s Spurs, Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets and Dallas Stars, have made the primary contributions to the fund, which can search to attach with youngsters by means of sports activities and construct secure locations like group out of doors play areas.
Golden State was the perfect crew within the playoffs, as confirmed by the Warriors who gained their fourth NBA title within the final eight years.
It was additionally the perfect crew of the pre-season. It is uncommon.
The Warriors went 5-0 in preseason video games final season. They turned simply the second crew in 26 years to win an NBA championship after incomes the perfect preseason document. The opposite crew on that listing was… the Warriors, in 2016-17.
Golden State was certainly one of 5 undefeated in final yr’s preseason, with Dallas, New York, Chicago and Sacramento all 4-0.
Most coaching camps across the NBA begin on Tuesday. This season’s NBA preseason slate begins Friday in Saitama, Japan — at 6 a.m. Jap, 3 a.m. Pacific and seven p.m. native time between the Warriors and Washington Wizards. That is the primary of 70 pre-season video games on the schedule.
The league goes to 10 locations that do not have NBA groups – Saitama; Seattle; Edmonton; Tulsa, Oklahoma; Vegas; Greensboro, North Carolina; Ontario, California (35 miles from Los Angeles, residence of the Clippers’ G League crew); Montreal; Birmingham, Alabama; and for the primary time, Abu Dhabi, for a pair of matchups between Atlanta and Milwaukee.
Additionally on the schedule – two non-NBA groups, Australia’s Adelaide 36ers (they’ll face Phoenix and Oklahoma Metropolis) and Israel’s Maccabi Ra’anana (they’ll face the Clippers, Portland and Oklahoma Metropolis).
The Clippers would be the residence crew for each video games in Seattle, one towards Portland, the opposite towards Maccabi Ra’anana.
Seattle, in fact, has NBA historical past and hopes to have extra because the NBA grows. It is also close to the place Clippers proprietor Steve Ballmer owns an property.
“I have not been there since I performed in 2008, I believe I used to be,” Clippers coach Tyronn Lue mentioned. “Simply to return and Mr. Ballmer, type of see his places of work and the way he lives…I am excited to go.”
Washington and Atlanta haven’t got an actual residence sport on their preseason rosters; the Wizards can be known as “residence” for one of many video games in Saitama towards the Warriors, and the Hawks are the designated residence crew for one of many video games in Abu Dhabi towards the Bucks.
And for what it is value — let’s be actual, it is preseason, so not a lot — Chicago has the longest lively preseason successful streak within the league. The Bulls have gained seven consecutive exhibitions, another than Golden State and New York.
On the opposite finish of that spectrum: Portland, which has misplaced seven straight preseason video games, the longest such streak within the league.
ON THE ROAD
Most groups maintain coaching camps at their amenities, however a couple of are already hitting the street for his or her first journeys of the season.
Denver is heading to San Diego for camp. Houston travels to McNeese State in Lake Charles, Louisiana. The Los Angeles Clippers will open follow in Las Vegas at UNLV.
Philadelphia holds its camp on the Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina. Portland headed south to Santa Barbara, Calif., and educated at UCSB.
Nonetheless, maybe the 2 most bold journeys are these to Toronto and Miami.
The Raptors took a five-hour flight from Toronto to Victoria, B.C. for his or her camp.
And the Warmth have been solely within the air 35 minutes, however passports have been required. Miami holds its camp in Nassau, Bahamas, roughly 185 miles from the crew’s residence.
The NBA celebration of Invoice Russell’s life will proceed all season and past. And the emotions about Russell clearly prolong far past Boston, too.
Raptors guard Fred VanVleet paid tribute to Russell earlier than his crew left for coaching camp, saying “it is arduous to discover a higher icon and higher ambassador for the sport and only for the sport. humanity”.
“It is arduous to place into phrases precisely what he meant,” VanVleet mentioned. “Simply an incredible human being and a man who completely should be held within the utmost respect till the top of time. He had an unimaginable journey, an unimaginable life and meant a lot to so many individuals.
All camps can be open on Tuesday; the Wizards, Warriors, Bucks and Hawks may begin earlier resulting from their impending worldwide journeys for preseason video games.
Pre-season video games run till October 14. Groups can have as much as 20 gamers on their roster throughout coaching camp, however should scale back to 17 (which features a most of two two-way gamers for every crew) by 5 p.m. october. 17.
The common season begins on October 18.
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