Troubled Rio puts final touches on Olympics

by Sebastian Smith RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (AFP) — Rio de Janeiro hosts the Olympic Games in less than four weeks, but crime and economic crisis mean the party-loving Brazilian city is glum and struggling to find its vibe. Stadiums are just about ready and local businesses, hammered by Brazil’s deep recession, look forward to the arrival of an estimated 500,000 tourists. For an already sports-mad city, the Games — the first ever held in […]

Golf: Johnson pulls out of Olympics over Zika concerns

LOS ANGELES, United States (AFP) — World number two Dustin Johnson, who won his first major title at the US Open Golf Championship in June, won’t play in the Rio Olympics because of concerns over the Zika virus. In a statement released to the Golf Channel on Friday by his agent, David Winkle of Hambric Sports Management, Johnson said his hopes of expanding his family with fiancee Paulina Gretzky meant it would be “irresponsible” to risk […]

NBA: Title lifts Cavs sales but Curry tops jersey list

NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — Unprecedented demand for Cleveland Cavaliers merchandise after the team’s first NBA title lifted them atop team sales, the league announced Thursday, but Golden State’s Stephen Curry topped jersey sales. The Cavaliers edged Golden State 4-3 in the best-of-seven championship series, bringing Cleveland its first champion in any major sport since 1964 and boosting the club on global online league store sales. Not since January of last year, near the […]

NBA: Durant doesn’t see Warriors move as shortcut to title

SAN FRANCISCO, United States (AFP) — NBA star Kevin Durant dismissed critics of his leaving the Oklahoma City Thunder for Golden State on Thursday after signing a two-year deal worth $54.3 million to join the Warriors. “All I can control is how I come to work every single day and help this team get better,” Durant said. “I can’t worry about the outside noise.” Four-time NBA scoring leader Durant, the 2014 NBA Most Valuable Player, […]

NBA: Wade set for a return to his Chicago roots

NEW YORK, United States (AFP) – Dwyane Wade, a three-time NBA champion with Miami, is set to join his hometown Chicago Bulls following 13 seasons with the Heat, the US media reported Wednesday night. The 34-year-old free agent and 12-time all star reportedly baulked at a two-year, $40 million deal from the only franchise he has known. His new deal will reportedly pay him $47.5 million over two years, with a player option in year two. […]

NBA: Wade ponders options as Allen considers comeback

NEW YORK, United States (AFP) — Dwyane Wade, a three-time NBA champion with Miami, and Ray Allen, the NBA’s all-time 3-point shooter who retired in 2014, were pondering moves to title contenders Wednesday. In the final hours before Thursday’s start of NBA teams being able to sign contracts with free agents, 2013 NBA championship teammates Wade and Allen were looking at rich deals and contending teams and considering their options. NBA clubs can agree to […]

Basketball: Canada, Kiwis through to Rio qualifier semis

MANILA, Philippines (AFP) — Canada joined France and New Zealand in the semi-finals of an Olympic basketball qualifying tournament in Manila on Wednesday as hosts the Philippines were knocked out. Cory Joseph, the Toronto Raptors guard, sank three of four pressure-laden free throws in the dying seconds as Canada beat Senegal 58-55, a day after defeating Turkey. Joseph’s skill killed off a Senegalese rally that saw the Africans get to within a basket, 55-53, with […]

President Duterte graces FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament; makes the ceremonial toss

MANILA, July 6 – President Rodrigo R. Duterte took a break from his busy work schedule to watch the much-awaited game between Gilas Pilipinas and France in the ongoing 2016 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament (OQT) at the MOA Arena in Pasay City. PRRD made the ceremonial toss of the ball to signal the start of the game at 9 p.m. As he entered the court, the President bowed twice to the crowd amid thunderous cheers and yells from the fans chanting ‘”Duterte, Duterte, go go […]

Basketball: France off to perfect start in Olympic qualifiers

MANILA, Philippines (AFP) — France, led by NBA star Tony Parker, got off to a perfect start Tuesday as the world’s fifth-ranked basketball team threw off the Philippines 93-84 in their bid to win a slot at the Rio Olympics. The veteran San Antonio Spurs point guard added 21 points and six assists to Nando De Colo’s 27 points and six rebounds as the French backcourt led a fightback from an early 10-point deficit to […]

FIBA OQT: De Colo, Parker leads France to conquer the Philippines on opening night

  Pasay City, Philippines – The day of reckoning is finally here for Gilas Pilipinas as they finally face France in the FIBA Olympic Qualifiers in Manila at the Mall of Asia Arena. Playing inside a sold out arena, Gilas Pilipinas came out scorching as Andray Blatche came up big in the first quarter with 14 points to electrify the crowd as they lead France, 30-22. The same intensity was brought by Gilas Pilipinas in […]

FIBA OQT: Canada beats Turkey behind Joseph’s hot shooting night

Pasay City, Philippines – The International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Olympic Qualifiers in Manila kicked off at the SM Mall of Asia Arena with Canada beating Turkey, 77-69, putting their team with a foot inside the door of the semi-final round. Canada went off to a very hot start and they were led by their team captain, Cory Joseph, who had 10 points in the first half while Tristan Thompson chipped in with 7 points to […]

Gilas Pilipinas at Team France, maghaharap mamaya

Mamaya na ang pinaka-aabangang laban sa pagitan ng pambansang koponan na Gilas Pilipinas kontra naman sa powerhouse team na France para sa 2016 Olympic qualifying tournament. Batay sa ulat, tatangkain umanong makuha  ng Gilas Pilipinas ang nasabing laban upang hindi umabot sa do-or-die game kontra naman sa koponan ng New Zealand. Sinasabing mistulang dadaan sa butas ng karayom ang pambansang koponan lalu na’t anim sa mga manlalaro ng France ay kasalukuyan at dating NBA player […]