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    August 10, 2018 4:02 PM HKT
    Stephen Curry and Draymond Green admire Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni from afar for how he empowers all his players to be scorers.

    No matter who you are Martin Fehervary Capitals Jersey , just let it fly – and for the Rockets that means regularly from 3-point range. And in transition whenever possible.

    Golden State coach Steve Kerr praises D’Antoni for influencing the way NBA teams now play offense: the pace and the space; precise ball movement and playing small without a traditional center; shooting at will and shooting from way back.

    Still, for all his success in leading the West’s top team this season, D’Antoni might need a championship to validate his style.

    Standing in the way are the defending champion Warriors, who open the best-of-seven Western Conference finals at Houston on Monday night.

    ”He empowers everyone to shoot the basketball, and that’s dangerous,” said Green, Golden State’s bruising forward. ”That’s why he’s been so successful, especially on that side of the ball with any team he’s ever coached because that’s definitely an area where he’s a mastermind. ”

    D’Antoni downplays his significance in developing today’s game.

    ”I think a lot of things combined to change it,” he said. ”One, they changed the rules and, two, the analytic people came in and put validation over 3s and stuff we were doing in Phoenix. Yeah Youth Baker Mayfield Jersey , we kind of jumped out there because of the team we had and Steve Nash before anybody really caught on. And it worked. So in a little sense part of it, but there was a lot of factors.”

    D’Antoni’s teams recall those running, high-flying Denver Nuggets of the `80s, led by Alex English, Dan Issel and Kiki VanDeWeghe.

    While Kerr has long expressed how much he learned from mentor Gregg Popovich of the San Antonio Spurs, he notes, ”I was inspired by Mike.”

    ”The guy who deserves the most credit for changing the way the league is played is Mike D’Antoni,” Kerr said. ”He’s the guy who just eliminated the center position and said, `Let’s go small and fast and shoot more 3s.”’

    Not that Kerr was immediately convinced such a style would work. After all, while Suns general manager in 2008, he traded All-Star Shawn Marion to Miami for Shaquille O’Neal, who hardly fit that focus of play. Kerr has called it a ”bad move” all these years later.

    D’Antoni left for New York at the end of that season and went 121-167 before resigning from the Knicks in March 2012. But Carmelo Anthony was never comfortable with or committed to D’Antoni’s way.

    The Houston coach has said most everybody doubted his system Oren Burks Color Rush Jersey , but the game has evolved.

    ”In the old days, you had kind of three out, two in, you had your traditional power forward, whether it was Karl Malone or Charles Oakley or somebody like that who was going to maybe shoot a 15-footer, but he was going to be banging down in the paint,” Kerr said.

    ”Mike eliminated that and created all that much more space. … The influence is there in the strategy and then over the last 10 years every player in the league has spent his summers shooting 500 3-pointers a day.”

    Kerr’s partnership with D’Antoni lasted only that 2007-08 season in Phoenix before D’Antoni bolted for New York. A decade later, the 67-year-old D’Antoni has enjoyed his most successful stint in these two seasons with the Rockets.

    His influence has reached the college game, too.

    In the summer of 2014, Tara VanDerveer, the women’s Hall of Fame coach from Stanford, called on D’Antoni for an assist She needed to revamp her offense from the Cardinal’s tried-and-true triangle. D’Antoni helped with the transition.

    Facing a D’Antoni team Authentic Saquon Barkley Jersey , Curry is prepared to defend constant pick-and-rolls. He understands the fast and creative tempo at which D’Antoni’s team plays.

    ”I guess you’d call it unorthodox when it comes to the things that he tries,” Curry said. ”But it seems that anybody who goes and plays for D’Antoni’s system their offensive numbers go out the roof, just because he knows how to put guys in the right positions and instill confidence when you’re out there to make plays.”

    David Lee, an ex-Warrior, played for D’Antoni with the Knicks. Curry says Lee spoke of how D’Antoni sought to bring out the best in his players.

    ”So he’s had a great track record of putting up crazy offensive numbers and whatnot,” Curry said. ”And as a guy watching teams he used to coach he was always fun to watch.”

    AP Basketball Writer Brian Mahoney and AP Sports Writer Kristie Rieken contributed to this report.

    In his low-key way, Ross Stripling thinks of himself as ”an unknown guy having a random good year.”

    Dodgers slugger Matt Kemp, third among National League outfielders in All-Star balloting, hopes he can take his 28-year-old teammate with him to the Midsummer Classic.

    ”He needs to be in there,” Kemp said. ”That boy is pitching his butt off. He’s been a big part of our success.”

    Stripling tossed four-hit ball over 6 1/3 innings, Kemp and Enrique Hernandez went deep to give the Dodgers a major league-leading 32 homers this month, and Los Angeles beat the rival San Francisco Giants 3-2 on Friday night for their season high-tying fourth straight win.

    The Dodgers stumbled through the first two months http://www.falconsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-justin-bethel-jersey , losing six of their first 10 matchups with the Giants.

    What a difference June has made. They are 10-2 this month and trail NL West-leading Arizona by 2 1/2 games.

    ”We’ve been playing the way we expect to play,” Kemp said.

    Stripling (6-1) extended his career-best winning streak to six games and is 4-0 at home this season. The right-hander gave up a two-run, opposite-field homer to Pablo Sandoval and had six strikeouts with no walks.

    ”He threw a lot of strikes. He dominated,” Sandoval said.

    Stripling was a reliever in April but now is one of the Dodgers’ most consistent starters with Clayton Kershaw, Rich Hill and Walker Buehler on the disabled list.

    ”I knew I wanted to be a starter and I felt I could do it,” Stripling said.

    Dodgers manager Dave Roberts’ confidence in Stripling has been rewarded.

    ”He’s throwing the heck out of it,” Roberts said. ”Executing pitches and trying to dissect hitters, this is who he is.”

    After giving up a leadoff double to Joe Panik, Stripling retired his next 12 batters. Sandoval singled leading off the sixth before Stripling retired another six consecutive hitters.

    ”They played 16 innings in Miami yesterday, so that helps,” said Stripling, who spent his off day watching the Giants win before flying west. ”You’re always going to go out there and attack knowing they’re tired. Maybe they don’t have that much fight.”

    Kenley Jansen retired the side in the ninth for his 16th save.

    The Giants trailed 3-2 in the seventh after Sandoval’s shot chased Stripling. The Dodgers’ bullpen then retired San Francisco’s final eight batters in sending the Giants to a 17th loss in their last 23 road games.

    ”We got back in the game on him but we couldn’t do much as far as putting pressure on him Authentic John Tavares Jersey ,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.

    Kemp homered on the first pitch from Derek Holland (4-7) in the fourth. Yasmani Grandal was safe at third on an error by center fielder Austin Jackson and he scored on Yasiel Puig’s double to deep right-center for a 2-0 lead.

    Hernandez homered into the left-field pavilion in the first.

    The Dodgers’ 88 homers this season are tops in the National League.

    Holland gave up three runs – two earned – in five innings. He struck out seven and walked two.

    Earlier in the day, Kemp was suspended for one game and fined an undisclosed amount for his involvement in a scuffle with Texas Rangers catcher Robinson Chirinos on Wednesday. Kemp appealed the punishment, so he’s allowed to play until the process is completed.

    TRAINER’S ROOM

    Giants: 3B Evan Longoria (broken left hand) went on the disabled list a day after getting hit by a pitch at Miami. … INF Brandon Belt will be activated Saturday after having an appendectomy.

    Dodgers: Placed reliever Pedro B锟絜z on 10-day DL with right biceps tendinitis, retroactive to Tuesday.

    NO LUCK AGAINST LA

    Holland has never fared well against the Dodgers. He’s 0-3 with a 6.38 ERA in four career starts against them. He has struck out 16 and walked 13. ”They were laying off some pretty good pitches,” he said. ”They did a pretty good job of working the count.”

    UP NEXT

    Madison Bumgarner (0-1, 4.76 ERA) pitches for the Giants on Saturday against Alex Wood (1-5, 4.43) in a matchup of lefties. Bumgarner seeks his first win in his third start after missing the first two months of the season with a broken left pinkie.

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