Indiana Pacers

Coming out of the Eastern Conference will be a whole lot easier without LeBron James lording over the rest of its peasants, and the Indiana Pacers have positioned themselves to be the conference’s foremost dark horse.customized nfl jerseys

Only two other teams have added more wins above replacement over the offseason, according to an analysis run by Bleacher Report’s Andy Bailey: the Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Lakers. And they’ve each reached the pinnacle of summertime improvement through one massive move.

Golden State ruined the already ruined NBA (it isn’t actually ruined) by lucking into DeMarcus Cousins. Los Angeles happened upon a greatest-of-all-time candidate whose life is no longer dictated by trying to win championships. nfl custom jerseys cheap Indiana’s activity has been more subtle and comprehensive.

Tyreke Evans gives the Pacers another primary ball-handler who has the spot-up chops to coexist with Victor Oladipo. He shot 40.8 percent on pull-up threes last season—third-best mark among 96 players to make at least 10 appearances and average more than one attempt per game. He also canned 38.9 percent of his catch-and-fire treys.

Doug McDermott is a quality plug-and-play sniper. He drilled nearly 46 percent of his standstill threes while splitting time with the New York Knicks and Dallas Mavericks. Along with Evans, he buoys the spacing of an offense that led the league in long-two frequency, according to Cleaning The Glass.

Kyle O’Quinn has a similar effect up front. He has three-point range the Knicks chose to ignore and is more nimble-footed, and thus playable, compared to the departed Al Jefferson. He offers a nice alternative if the Pacers cheap custom nfl jerseys are committed to dabbling in dual-big lineups. cheap customized nfl jerseys TJ Leaf is TJ Leaf, and the Myles Turner-Domantas Sabonis partnership was mostly a disaster.

Indiana is not without its red flags. Head coach Nate McMillan is making sure of that. As he said when asked about what James’ departure from the conference means, per 8 Points, 9 Seconds’ Tony East: “I think you’ll see less spread lineups and more grinding and more post players.”cheap nfl custom jerseys

Um, yeah. This can’t happen. Having O’Quinn is nice, but McDermott and Thaddeus Young should be soaking up time at the 4. The Pacers have enough concerns on defense looking at their wing rotation without hamstringing an offense that finished 23rd in efficiency after the All-Star break.

In a nutshell, though, Indiana’s 48-win upstart is deeper and more talented. That’ll give way to unique nike nfl jerseys cheap  opportunities in the East’s impending LeBron-less free-for-all.

NBA Free-Agency Roundup: Isaiah Thomas Signing Comes with No Risk, High Reward

Feel free to stop and take a breath, especially now that another domino has fallen.

As reported by Adrian Wojnarowski, Isaiah Thomas has agreed to a one-year minimum contract with the Denver Nuggets, for whom he’ll attempt to rebound from his disappointing 2017-18 campaign before hitting 2019’s free-agency period in better standing. The diminutive point guard couldn’t get anything going with either the Cleveland Cavaliers or Los Angeles Lakers after the surprise trade centered around Kyrie Irving moved him outside his established comfort zone with the Boston Celtics, but he’s now landing in a situation that represents the perfect balance of risk and reward.

Though the early portion of the 2018 NBA offseason featured fast-and-furious action as LeBron James donned a Los Angeles Lakers uniform, DeMarcus Cousins joined the Golden State Warriors and so many other big-name players decided on their immediate futures, the rumor mill had slowed down considerably prior to the Thomas news. But that’s largely due to a lack of money, not a talent void on what remains of the open market. nfl cheap jerseys

So journey with us as we first break down the Thomas signing, then, based on some combination of informed speculation, external reports and that good-old gut feeling, help tell you where the top five remaining free agents will end up when the dust firmly settles.

Every quality signing blends together risk and reward in sterling fashion, and this one is no different.

If Thomas is unable to rekindle the magic that made him one of the league’s most devastating offensive threats in 2016-17, the Nuggets can cut ties with him for only a minimal cost, instead turning to up-and-comers such as nfl jerseys cheap china Monte Morris while attempting to plug the gap behind Jamal Murray on the projected depth chart. Thomas, meanwhile, would just be back where he started—searching for a long-term home and attempting to prove his hip injury isn’t going to wreck what was once such a promising career. nfl jersey

But what if it does work? nfl jerseys

The Nuggets have prided themselves on their offensive prowess for a few years running, to the point that head coach Mike Malone has entirely switched philosophies. Though he entered Colorado as a signal-caller who focused first and foremost on defense, he’s now embraced the high-scoring habits and attempted to maximize the team’s production around the promising young core comprised of Murray, Will Barton, Gary Harris and Nikola Jokic. cheap nfl jerseys china

Thomas only adds to that identity.

In peak form, he can settle in as a high-scoring sixth man functioning as a change of pace whenever he enters the proceedings. That he has chemistry with Malone from their mutual time with the Sacramento Kings only adds to the upside, since it should presumably authentic nfl jerseys  take him less time to build a synergistic relationship with both the coaching staff and his new teammates. His potential in the Mile High City may still be capped by his role—he’s not displacing the Murray/Harris backcourt anytime soon—but small-ball lineups do allow for even more opportunities.

LeBron Trusting the Process?

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No, this doesn’t mean LeBron James is backtracking on his four-year deal with the Los Angeles Lakers and instead deciding to join the Philadelphia 76ers. Sorry!

But the four-time MVP still seems content to sit back and accept everything that’s nfl youth jerseys  happening around him as Magic Johnson endeavors to build a competitive, albeit unorthodox, roster for the Los Angeles Lakers. The signings of Rajon Rondo, Lance Stephenson and JaVale McGee remain questionable (even if you look at the silver linings and focus on the defensive upside and maintained cap flexibility for 2019), but they apparently represent the actual plan in Tinseltown.

As Ramona Shelburne and Brian Windhorst reported for ESPN.com, these moves were planned from the onset of free agency: cheap nfl jerseys nike china

“Here is the answer: exactly what James and Lakers president Magic Johnson planned when they met for more than three hours on the first night of free agency. According to multiple sources within the Lakers and close to James, this is the rollout of a plan Johnson outlined for James the night of June 30 at James’ home. The subsequent deals, which sources say James has consulted on but have been executed at Johnson and Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka’s direction, follow this vision.

“It may seem like an unconventional plan, considering current trends. It may be a plan that takes time to come together, especially early in the season, when new habits will be tested. It may, in fact, be a plan that ultimately fails.

“But the Lakers are indeed attempting to chart a new course for James’ Lakers future, one that is vastly different from the style of basketball he played with the Cleveland Cavaliers.”

That’s…interesting. And it’s important to note that successful execution of a plan does not mean the plan was logical in and of itself. But here we are, and there’s no going back as the Lakers attempt to maximize the next year of James’ extended prime.  nike jersey nfl cheap

Also worth noting? The league’s best player doesn’t seem intent on forcing the title window open with the acquisition of a celestial sidekick. Cue cheap youth nfl jerseys  Zach Lowe:

“LeBron is a Laker, and he is not pressuring L.A. to acquire a second star now, per sources familiar with his thinking. His decision to come alone for three guaranteed seasons speaks for itself. He knows Ingram has at least borderline All-Star potential, and that the 2019 free-agency class is loaded beyond Leonard. He has faith in the combined powers of his supernova talent and the Lakers brand.youth nfl jerseys cheap

“His patience will have limits. But reading between the lines, the Lakers probably have the next calendar year before LeBron applies urgent pressure.”

If you’ve been hoping against hope that the current Los Angeles depth chart was only a placeholder before the Lakers acquire more established talents and avoid wasting a year of peak James, it’s time to start accepting reality.youth nfl jerseys

Yes, it’s probably a painful process.

Carson Wentz Reportedly Expected to Be Ready for Week 1 After Knee Injury

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When the Philadelphia Eagles open the 2018 NFL season against the Atlanta Falcons on Sept. 6, they may be doing so with their star QB under center.

ESPN’s Chris Mortensen, cheap nfl jersey via colleague Adam Schefter, said on Tuesday that he is “starting to believe that Carson Wentz is going to be ready for the opener” based on what he is hearing.

Wentz suffered a season-ending injury in Week 14 last season when he tore his ACL against the Los Angeles Rams. He injured it on a touchdown run that was ultimately called back due to penalty, although he stayed in the game for a couple more plays to finish the drive with a touchdown pass.

At that moment, Philadelphia’s dream season appeared to be all but over. After all, the second-year quarterback was having an MVP-caliber season.

Wentz threw for 3,296 yards with 33 touchdowns and just seven interceptions in 13 games. The former No. 2 overall pick had led his Eagles to an 11-2 record, the best mark in the NFC and enough to clinch the division in the game he went down.cheap nfl authentic jerseys

As easy as it would have been for the team to dwell on the injury and give up on the season, Philadelphia instead embraced the “underdog” role and went on an unbelievable run to win its first-ever Super Bowl championship.

Nick Foles wound up leading the Eagles to an upset victory over Tom Brady and the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII, 41-33. The backup’s 373 yards and three touchdowns earned him Super Bowl MVP honors.cheap authentic nfl jerseys

Make no mistake about it, though. There was no quarterback controversy following the Super Bowl run—this was and is Wentz’s team.

Philadelphia listened to offers on Foles with the intention of giving him a chance to start somewhere else if they received an offer they couldn’t refuse. However, no team blew the Eagles away with an offer, so they kept the veteran as an insurance policy for Wentz (while restructuring Foles’ contract to reward him).cheap nfl jerseys from china

Wentz has a long way to go before he is ready to step on the field against NFL defenses, but the 25-year-old has made great strides on the recovery trail. There are still just more than three months until the season kicks off, and if Wentz is for some reason unable to be cleared in time, the Eagles can take the field with a reliable fallback. nfl cheap jerseys

Kawhi Leonard and the SFs Most Likely to Be Traded During NBA Offseason

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Bring on the small forwards most likely to find their way onto the NBA’s chopping block. We’re ready, Rumor Mill.

Well, most of us are ready. If you haven’t yet checked out the previous installments of this series, you’re behind on your required reading:

Point guards
Shooting guards cheap nfl jersey

With the lines between 2s, 3s, and 4s blurrier than ever, we’ll lean on Cleaning The Glass’ possession data to determine which players belong as small forwards. And remember, not all of these trade candidates have been linked to specific reports or destinations. They’re here because an overwhelming amount of evidence suggests they may not be long for their current digs.

Certain players no longer fit the timeline associated with their incumbent team. Others could be moved as part of a necessary salary dump. Some may end up being collateral damage of stale nucleuses. A few more have contract situations that could force their squad into action.

Most of these players won’t go anywhere over the offseason. That’s fine. We aren’t predicting departures—we’re just identifying which names will monopolize the trade speculation at their respective position.

Robert Covington, Philadelphia 76ers cheap nfl authentic jerseys

If you don’t think the Sixers will try to party-crash the Kawhi Leonard sweepstakes or be open to brokering an opt-in-and-trade for LeBron James, you have permission to stop reading.

For the more open-minded folks: Robert Covington is a last-ditch trade asset. He’s critical to what the Sixers do defensively—All-Defensive first team, baby!—and he remains a nice complementary shooter despite an ice-cold postseason.

Still, if it means landing James or Leonard, Covington should in no way be considered untouchable. cheap authentic nfl jerseys

Wesley Matthews, Dallas Mavericks

Wesley Matthews’ trade candidacy rests on how quickly the Mavericks see themselves making the leap to contender status.

If they want the extra juice that comes with letting his contract expire next summer,cheap nfl jerseys from china  he’ll stay put. But if they’re open to taking on longer-term money, either as a salary-dumping ground or as part of a blockbuster trade, he turns into a hot cap-relief commodity.

The Best-Kept Secret on Every NFL Roster

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Superstars get most of the love, but NFL teams are stitched together by above-average players who may never get their due. This article is an active salute to every franchise’s unheralded anchor.

For some teams, that may be a young player who’s slowly working up the depth chart. For others, it could be a veteran role player. Either way, these athletes help their teams on Sundays and influence offseason decisions, even if they aren’t Aaron Rodgers or Odell Beckham Jr.

They’re the offensive linemen or defensive tackles who aren’t mentioned much by color commentators, the skill players who aren’t picked up in fantasy football leagues and the late-round picks who bloom into starters.cheap nfl authentic jerseys

In his first two seasons in the NFL, undrafted free agent Olsen Pierre was unable to get on the field. Last season, Pierre finished with 11.5 tackles at or behind the line. That number ranked behind only Chandler Jones (29) and Corey Peters (12) for Arizona in 2017.

Under defensive coordinator James Bettcher, the Cardinals had not had a full-time 3-technique role for any defensive tackle for several years. This is one reason why Pierre played just 33 percent of Arizona’s defensive snaps, despite his production.cheap authentic nfl jerseys

New Cardinals head coach Steve Wilks, formerly the Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator, will bring a 4-3 defense and a full-time penetrating defensive line role to the desert. That can only mean good things for Pierre, who is one of the brightest young players at the position.

Dan Quinn’s last season as a college defensive coordinator was 2012 with the Florida Gators. That happened to be cornerback Brian Poole’s true freshman season at Florida. When Poole went undrafted in 2016, his former defensive coordinator picked him cheap nfl jerseys from china up as a potential slot cornerback.

Since that signing, the 5’9″ defensive back has played 1,465 defensive snaps for the Atlanta Falcons. Poole’s story is a perfect example of scouting and projection into highly specific roles.

Quinn essentially found a full-time starter in college free agency. nfl cheap jerseys Only six Falcons (Robert Alford, Ricardo Allen, Keanu Neal, Deion Jones, De’Vondre Campbell and Desmond Trufant) have played more defensive snaps over the last two years than Poole.

Le’Veon Bell to Skip Steelers OTAs After Getting Franchise Tagged Again

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Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell won’t attend the team’s organized team activities, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported Monday.

The Steelers’ OTAs are set to begin Tuesday and run through Thursday before resuming next week. Bell’s absence won’t come as a surprise, with the three-time Pro Bowler looking to sign a long-term extension. Pittsburgh placed the franchise tag on him for the second year in a row in March.

Bell is set to earn a little over $14.5 million in 2018 unless he and the Steelers can agree to a new deal before July 16. He indicated during a live chat on Instagram in March he plans on sitting out the offseason without a multiyear extension.nfl jersey cheap

“Honestly, no, I’m not going to sit out,” Bell said, regarding a holdout that would include the 2018 regular season, per the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review’s Joe Rutter. “I’m going to be in the facility Week 1. It’s going to be a rerun of last year. I’m not going to [training] camp. I’m not doing nothing else extra, OTAs, none of that.”

He had previously floated the idea of sitting out the 2018 season or retiring altogether if the Steelers placed the franchise tag on him.

Bell reported to the Steelers last September cheap nfl jerseys ahead of the 2017 season, missing out on the team’s preseason workouts and games.

Bell proceeded to run for 1,291 yards and nine touchdowns, though his 4.0 yards per carry were his lowest since his rookie year in 2013.nfl jerseys for cheap

Hurt: Brandon McCoy (UNLV, C, Freshman)

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Post-combine projection: Nos. 40-60

Brandon McCoy did little in Chicago to convince NBA teams he’s worth a first-round pick.

The underwhelming athletic-test scores were to be expected. But McCoy had trouble during scrimmages, often catching in the post and holding while teammates stood and watched. His back-to-the-basket bully method didn’t work against NBA prospects the way it did at UNLV.

McCoy, who already hired an agent and can’t go back to school, does not meet the criteria for a modern-day center, unable to stretch the floor, protect the rim or switch out on the perimeter. He’ll be in jeopardy of falling into the 40s or 50s, or maybe even going undrafted.

Post-combine projection: Top five cheap authentic nfl jerseys

Mohamed Bamba simply confirmed the expected: He possesses one of the most unique physical profiles the NBA draft has ever seen.

Bamba created buzz without touching a ball or moving his feet. His 7’10” wingspan ranks as the longest in NBA.com’s database, ahead of rim protectors like Hassan Whiteside (7’7″) and Rudy Gobert (7’8 ½”).

His standing reach measured 9’7 ½”, which means he can nearly touch the rim with his heels on the floor.

Sharp and humble—previously well-known characteristics—Bamba likely impressed every team he met with during interviews.

There is a growing belief that Bamba could be in play at No. 3 once Deandre Ayton and Luka Doncic are off the board. And those chances only improved following his appearance in Chicago.

Post-combine projection: Late first round cheap nfl jerseys from china

Melvin Frazier played well Thursday and then sat out Friday, a potential sign he received positive feedback regarding his chances of going in the first round. nfl cheap jerseys

After rising for a 40 ½” max vertical and measuring 6’6″ with a 7’1 ¾” wingspan—excellent numbers for a wing—Frazier showed a little of everything during his scrimmage.

He knocked down a three, had a strong lefty drive, exploded for a windmill dunk on a fast break and defended with intensity.

It appears his stock will benefit from both a solid showing at the combine and the rising value of two-way wings. nfl jerseys cheap china

Ben Zobrist Rips MLB in IG Post After Being Threatened with Fine for Cleats

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Chicago Cubs utility man Ben Zobrist spoke out Saturday after he received an “authentic nfl jerseys cheap official warning” letter from Major League Baseball for wearing black cleats.

Zobrist posted a picture of the letter on Instagram alongside a photo of his cleats. He said he’s worn black spikes for day games at Wrigley Field in Chicago for two years and was “curious” as to why MLB has started to enforce the uniform regulation requiring shoes to feature 51 percent of the team’s main color:

“For the last two years, I have worn black spikes exclusively at Wrigley Field for day games to pay homage to the history of our great game, and now I am being told I will be fined and disciplined if I continue to wear them. When I was a kid, I was inspired by highlights of the greats such as Ernie Banks and Stan Musial in the 1950s-60s and was captured by the old uniforms and all black cleats with flaps.”nfl jerseys for cheap

Zobrist added he’s “heard nothing but compliments” about the cleats and believes wearing them could help inspire younger fans to research the history of the sport.

The 36-year-old three-time All-Star didn’t say whether he’d continue wearing the shoes. It won’t take long to find out, however, as the Cubs’ next three games are at Wrigley Field with afternoon start times against the Chicago White Sox this nfl jersey cheap weekend and Atlanta Braves on Monday.

A Look Ahead at NBA’s Toughest Contract Decisions in 2018 Free Agency

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Signing NBA players to contracts worth tens of millions of dollars isn’t always easy. Go figure.authentic nfl jerseys cheap

Some free-agency decisions are cakewalks. LeBron James deserves a max salary because he’s an honorary Avenger. The Golden State Warriors should have no issue paying Kevin Durant top dollar if he doesn’t feel like honoring coupons from billionaires because he’s almost as important to them as Stephen Curry.

Other high-profile instances aren’t as cut and dried. Some induce migraines and squandered sleep. A few seem genuinely unsolvable.nfl jerseys for cheap

Household names coming off their rookie-scale deals with undefined values are usually the most difficult. Teams are trying to reward them for what they’ve yet to do, which often entails paying them more than they’re worth. This offseason has plenty of those.

Impact role players ready for more responsibility and high-end talent working their way back from major injuries also fall under this umbrella. Some find themselves on teams grappling with depth-chart logjams and taxing salary obligations, and their futures are left hanging in the balance as a result.cheap nfl jerseys

These impending paydays represent the toughest to project. Never mind minor hiccups. We don’t care whether the Houston Rockets are keen on maxing out a then-33-year-old Chris Paul. The Orlando Magic won’t want to overpay Aaron Gordon (restricted), but he’s the closest they come to a viable cornerstone. nfl jersey cheap Matching an above-market offer is the least of their problems. Those decisions aren’t nearly difficult enough to make the cut.

Look instead to the more precarious situations. These players aren’t all hopeless flight risks, but their next deal is bound to be the subject of excruciating internal debates.