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Archive for the ‘Jews and basketball’ Category

 

Catching up

Posted on: July 5th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

As you no doubt know, there has been a marked drop-off in posts here in the past few months as I looked for a job. Finally got one, which also impacted the time I have for blogging. I won’t go into details now, but suffice it to say it’s not a normal nine-to-five, Monday-to-Friday schedule. I could be working 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. on day and 4 to midnight the next. Basically all I have time for is the Jewish Major Leaguer updates but I hope to get a handle on all this soon.

Actually let’s start now with a bit of catching up.

Probably the biggest news of the off-seasons is that the NJ Devils parted ways with Michael Cammalleri, who holds the record among Jewish NHLers in terms of points scored. The 35-year old left-winger made his debut in 2002 with the Los Angeles Kings so it’s fitting that he has rejoined them for what might be his last hurrah, signing a one year-$1 million contract. In between, Cams has played for the Calgary Flames, Montreal Canadiens, Flames again, and Devils. In 890 regular season contests, he has 287 goals and 326 assists for 613 total points, so that 600 plus a bar mitzvah.

Right to PlayIn other hockey news, Zach Hyman kept himself busy with author appearances for his kids’ books, The Bambino and Me and Hockey Hero. The center is entering his third season with the Toronto Maple Leafs; perhaps, as he is a restricted free agent.

Jason Zucker, the Minnesota Wild’s star forward, co-hosted the ninth annual Champions for Children Celebrity Golf Classic with Vikings’ tight end Kyle Rudolph late last month.

Let’s just keep going, shall we?

In the NFL, Nate Ebner got this season review on the New England Patriots website. he’s still getting mileage for his rugby performance at the last Olympics. The Pats Pulpit portion of the SB Nation family deemed him the best tackle on special teams last year (although they might be a wee bit biased). A similar portion of SBN that focuses on the Arizona Sun Devils posted this article about former QB Mike Bercovici, now a member of the LA Chargers (wow, does that sound strange). The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are expecting a bigger role from newly-designated center Ari Marpet, but Adam Bisnowaty isn’t getting that kind of love from the NY Giants as he prepares for his first camp.

Over on the hard court, Omri Casspi gets his big break? He signed with the world championship Golden State Warriors for what Ha’aretz, one of the leading newspapers in Israel, described as “only a modest $2.1 million.” Wish I could be so modest. Casspi split time between three teams last year, so four clubs in two seasons has to be some kind of record, at least for Jewish players.

According to the Jerusalem Post, Gal Mekel‘s “career has been on a downward spiral since he was cut by the Dallas Mavericks.” He was recently dismissed by Maccabi Tel Aviv.

I think that about gets us caught up on the recent older news. I’ll be posting about the Maccabiah Games, of course, and whatever is going on in Wimbledon in the days ahead. Stay tuned.
 

The next biggest (Israeli) thing in the NBA?

Posted on: June 26th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

Mazel tov to T.J. Leaf.

With their first pick, the Indiana Pacers selected the Israeli-born Leaf — “a fierce but quiet competitor” — in the recent NBA draft.

Leaf, a 6’10” power forward, averaged 16.3 points and 8.2 rebounds per game in his only season for UCLA. He was the 18th overall pick.

Omri Casspi, the first Israeli taken by an NBA team back in 2009, is currently with the Minnesota Timberwolves after debiting with the Sacramento Kings in 2009. he also played for the Cleveland Cavaliers, Houston Rockets, returned to the Kings, and the New Orleans Pelicans before arriving in Minny. He has endured his share of injuries and disappointments; last year he split time between three franchises, all the while being praised as a heady player. So what gives?

Gal Mekel is the third Israeli to play in the NBA, albeit very briefly.

Mish-Mashing (Trying to catch up)

Posted on: May 15th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

Things have been a bit hectic of late, what with looking for a new job and dealing with the release of the new book. So here’s a quick look back and what we (meaning I) have missed over the last several days.

Jewps/Jice update, Games of April 12, 2017

Posted on: April 13th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

NHL

Jason Zucker and the Minnesota Wild find themselves down a game in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs following their 2-1 overtime loss to the visiting St. Louis Blues. Zucker took six shots on goal in 19:47. Game two is scheduled for tomorrow night.

Zach Hyman and the Toronto Maple Leafs play their Eastern Conference opener against the host Washington Capitals tonight.

NBA

Omri CasspiIt ended not with a bang but with a whimper for Omri Casspi and the Minnesota Timberwolves, who finish their season with a 31-51 record following their 123-118 loss to the host Houston Rockets. Casspi played 19 minutes off the bench, scoring seven points with three rebounds and two assists; he was the only sub for the Wolves to finish with a minus-rating (-7).

Between injuries and coaches’ decisions, Casspi appeared in just 36 games: 22 for the Sacramento Kings, one for the New Orleans Pelicans, and 14 for the Timberwolves. His per game averages: 17.1 minutes, 3.5 points, 3.1 rebounds, and one assist. Here’s wishing him better luck next year.

Dallas Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban thought it would be a sweet idea to sign recently-retired Dallas Cowboys’ quarterback and uber hoops fan Tony Romo to a one-day contract but NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said no. As it was Romo participated in the Mav’s shoot-around before their final game and “suited up” for a pregame practice. The team finished the year at 33-49, so it’s not like anything was really on the line.

Image result for mark cuban, tony romo

 

 

 

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Jewps/Jice update, April 12, 2017

Posted on: April 12th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

NHL

The playoffs get underway tonight. Jason Zucker and the Minnesota Wild host the St. Louis Blues. Tomorrow, Zach Hyman and the Toronto Blue visit the Washington Capitals.

NBA

Omri Casspi scored seven points in 17 minutes off the bench for the Minnesota Timberwolves, who lost their penultimate game, 100-98, to the visiting Oklahoma City Thunder. Casspi also had three rebounds, an assist, and three steals. The season mercifully comes to a close tonight as the Wolves visit the Houston Rockets.

The Miami Herald added a fifth question to the Seder ritual: “Why is this night different for Jewish Heat season-ticket holders?

Heat fans attempt to distract Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James as the Miami Heat host the Cleveland Cavaliers at the AmericanAirlines Arena in Decemeber 2014.

Jewish sports update, April 11, 2017 — UPDATE

Posted on: April 11th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

NBA

No game last night for Omri Casspi and the Minnesota Timberwolves. They host the Oklahoma City Thunder tonight before wrapping things up tomorrow by visiting the Houston Rockets.

NHL

The playoffs get under way tomorrow. Jason Zucker and the Minnesota Wild host the St. Louis Blues. Zach Hyman and the Toronto Maple Leafs have to wait another day until the visit the Washington Capitols.

UPDATE: With their season over, the NY Islanders sent Josh Ho-Sang to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in the American Hockey League. The hopea re that he can help somebody get into the playoffs.

Jewish sports update, Weekend Edition

Posted on: April 10th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

NHL

The regular season came to an end yesterday (some call it the “first season” since the playoff seem to last just as long). Mazel tov to Jason Zucker and the Minnesota Wild and Zach Hyman and the Toronto Maple Leafs; they get to play on. Not so fortunate: Josh Ho-Sang, the rookie whose NY Islanders just missed the cut at the very end. Their record of 41-29-12 put them one point behind the Leafs. Ho-Sang, who made his debut on March 2nd, scoring four goals to go along with six assists in 21 games.

The Isles beat the woeful NJ Devils on Saturday, 4-2, The Devils also lost the next day to the Detroit Red Wings, 4-1. Michael Cammalleri had an assist in that one (#21) but closed out his season by not scoring over his last 28 games. He ended the season with 10 goals and 21 assists in 61 games. The Devils finished with the worst record in the Eastern Conference and second-worst overall: 28-40-14.

The Leafs clinched a playoff spot in their next-to-last game with a 5-3 win over the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins (they lost their finale to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday, 3-2). Hyman appeared in all 82 regular season games, scoring 10 goals with 18 assists. Their mark of 40-27-15 — eighth in the East — was their best showing in several seasons.

The Wild had time to relax, sewing up their playoff spot relatively early. They finished second in the Western Conference to the Chicago Blackhawks with a record of 49-25-8. Zucker had the best season of all the Jice-men with 22 goals and 25 assists in 79 games.

Last, but not least, the other Jason, Jason Demers, who had nine goals and 19 assists in 81 games for the Florida Panthers. The Panthers finished 35-36-11, 13th in the East.

Jason Zucker http://a.espncdn.com/combiner/i?img=/i/headshots/nhl/players/full/5509.png&w=350&h=254 josh ho-sang Michael Cammalleri Jason Demers

From left: Jason Zucker, Zach Hyman, Josh Ho-Sang, Michael Cammalleri, Jason Demers

NBA

Omri CasspiOmri Casspi season was … interesting. He began with the Sacramento Kings and seemed, at least to me, to have issues with his coach, who kept the Israeli import on the bench a lot more than one would think a player with that talent would warrant. Casspi was frequently the subject of trade rumors to better teams who could use someone with his skills as a valuable bench player. Instead he ended up on teams just as bad as the Kings, who, with two games remaining in their schedule, are 31-49. He went to the New Orleans Pelicans (33-47) in a major trade, played one game for them in which he performed quite well, except for breaking his thumb in said game, and was released. The Minnesota Timberwolves (31-49) picked him up at the tail end of the season and he hasn’t done much for them. In his most recent game — a 110-109 loss to the host LA Lakers — he scored two points with one assist and two steals in 17 minutes off the bench. To be fair, though, it has to be difficult to learn three different systems and mesh with three sets of teammates in a short amount of time. Wait ’til next year.

PGA

David Berger improved in each round of the 2017 Masters Tournament with a 77 on Thursday, 73 on Friday, 72 on Saturday, and 69 yesterday.

 

 

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Jewish sports scoreboard for April 6, 2017

Posted on: April 7th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

NBA

  • Omri Casspi scored four points with two rebounds, an assist, a turnover, and four personal fouls in 16 minutes off the bench for the Minnesota Timberwolves in their 105-98 loss to the host Portland Trailblazers.

NHL

  • Michael Cammalleri took three shots on goal in 18:30 of playing time as the NJ Devils lost to the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins, 7-4. Cammalleri — who holds the record for most goals by a Jewish player with 287 — has now gone 26 games without putting one in the net, his last coming on January 3rd.
  • Jason Demers‘ assist in the third period tied the game between his Florida Panthers and the visiting St. Louis Blues at 3-3, but the Blues reeled off three more goals for the 6-3 final score. Demers has 19 assists for the season.
  • Jason Zucker‘s 22nd goal gave the Minnesota Wild a 1-0 lead over the host Colorado Avalanche. It was one of three shots he attempted in 13:04 as the Wild went on to win the game, 4-3.
  • Zach Hyman missed on his two attempts in 17:34 in the Toronto Maple Leafs’ 4-1 loss to the visiting Tampa Bay Lightning.
  • Josh Ho-Sang and the NY Islanders had the night off.
  • The Leafs and Islanders are vying for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Each team has two games left. The Leafs hold the advantage, 93 points to the Islanders’ 90.

PGA

  • Daniel BergerDaniel Berger, who turns 24 today, ended the first round the The Masters with a five-over par 77. He won the Fed Ex St. Jude Classic last June for his first PGA tournament victory.

 

Jewps/Jice update, Weekend-plus

Posted on: April 4th, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

NBA

If Omri Casspi was hoping to exact a measure of revenge against the Sacramento Kings, he came away disappointed. He score just four points and made two rebounds in 12 minutes off the bench on Saturday in a 123-117 loss to the visiting Kings. In his next game — a 110-109 nail-biter against the visiting Portland Trailblazers, Casspi played another 12 minutes but scored just one point to go along with one rebound and two assists. According to some reports, he’s getting used to playing with a new bunch of guys. Must be difficult, learning new systems. Remember, this is his third team this season. But he has hope.

NHL

Josh Ho-Sang Michael Cammalleri returned to action for the NJ Devils in Friday’s 2-1 loss to the host NY Islanders. he took one shot on goal in 13:38 of ice time. Josh Ho-Sang (right) picked up his sixth assist in the second period on what proved to be the game-winner. he took three SOG in 16:35. Two days later he notched his fourth goal in a 4-2 win over the host Buffalo Sabres in 14:59 TOI. Cammalleri took another three tires in Saturday’s 3-0 loss to the hist Philadelphia Flyers. He played 14:25 in that one.

On Saturday Jason Demers took two SOG in 17:30 as the Florida Panthers lost to the host Boston Bruins, 5-2. Zach Hyman took one SOG in 17:19 as the Toronto Maple Leafs held off the host Detroit Red Wings, 5-4. Jason Zucker was a scratch with a lower body injury in the Minnesota Wild’s 3-0 loss to the host Nashville Predators. he would also miss the Sunday game against the visiting Colorado Avalanche that resulted in a 5-2 win for the Wild.

Hyman took two SOG in 15:10 for the Leafs last night in their 4-2 win over the host Buffalo Sabres.

Jewps update, March 31

Posted on: March 31st, 2017 by Ron Kaplan

Baby steps: Omri Casspi played 11 minutes off the bench, contributing four points, one assist, and a steal as the Minnesota Timberwolves won their second straight, 119-104 over the host LA Lakers. Next up, a return home where they will host Casspi’s first team of this season, the Sacramento Kings. Don’t you think he wants to start, play 40 minutes, and score 100 points?

Roman Sorkin hopes he has a chance to get into Oregon’s meeting against North Carolina tomorrow (tipoff 8:49 EST) to advance to the NCAA men’s finals on Monday. He has not appeared in their previous three tournament games after playing five minutes in the Ducks’ opening-round win over Iona on March 17.

 

Omri Casspi Roman Sorkin
   
 

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