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Dive deep into the salary cap

Colorado already has over $70 million in signings for next season for just 13 players, which doesn't leave them much room to maneuver. (Author: Gardener)

ColoradoTeams that can avoid total cap chaos by walking the tightrope by getting players into deals that match their value (or offset future value without breaking the bank) remain successful. PHR will look at each NHL team and take an in-depth look at their cap situation for the 2022-23 season and beyond. If he can snag it, it's possible Colorado could offer him a longer-term deal in the $4 million range, now above market value but later below. Otherwise, a two-year bridge deal in the $2 million range is likely where it lands. He needs to finish in the top 6 to have a shot at some of his "A" bonuses. Kaut made waivers earlier in the season but could still be available for a while due to a couple of injuries in attack. However, he will have a very limited role depending on how little they use their fourth line, so he is a candidate who will offer less than his qualifying offer in exchange for a higher two-way salary or perhaps at least a one-way deal accepts. Byram was an impressive player last year and has gotten off to a good start this season. He's the type of core young player that a team would typically want to ban near maximum tenure. A bridge deal could still push Colorado past $4 million a year based on some recent comparative numbers, so they'll have to leave some room for that. If Byram stays healthy, he's a strong bet to reach the $850,000 in A bonuses in his deal, so that needs to be factored in either this season or next. That didn't happen, instead he's been producing at basically a similar point-per-game level ever since. He will be 28 next summer and as a center he should have a pretty strong market but unless he can cement Kadri's old role it's hard to imagine him getting much more than that. If he can produce at a similar level as a year ago he should get a little more on the open market next year as he will have shown that 2021-22 wasn't an outlier. Cogliano had a nice playoff run that earned him that one-year contract in July. Now in his 35-year season, he'll almost certainly go from year to year, and with his production in recent seasons at fourth-liner levels, his price should drop a little more next summer. Helm is in a very similar situation, although he's been a bit more productive lately than Cogliano and Center can play, which should theoretically give him a slightly stronger market. Still, his role has diminished and he's better off as fourth liner, so Helm's next deal should be similar to this one. Hunt and Megna have yet to establish themselves as regulars and accordingly barring changes they will be signed next year for almost the minimum. Colorado also can't afford to go much higher for its end-of-roster spots. Johnson has long been a core defender, although his role and efficiency have waned in recent seasons. He turns 35 next summer and while he's doing well enough to get a contract somewhere, it's likely he'll be at least 50% lower than his current contract. GM Joe Sakic took advantage of the Islanders having to make room for the cap to acquire Toews for a couple of second-round picks and then signed him to that contract, which has become team-friendly in a hurry. His offensive play has started with Colorado and he's on a 57-point campaign. Toews will be 30 when his next contract starts and he's already on his way to a sizeable raise. However, if he stays around the 50-point mark over the next two seasons, he could double his price and then some on a maximum-term contract. This is the next big deal Sakic has to work out, although he'll have to wait until next July to work on it. But with minimal production, it's unlikely MacDermid can do much better on its next deal. MacDonald has been in the minors for most of his career and will need to establish himself as a regular if he is to get much more than the minimum in two years. Francouz has struggled with injury woes, but when he's healthy he's done well, as evidenced by a career 0.921 SV% before the start of the season. But with injuries and a limited track record (57 NHL appearances this year), he chose stability and took that extension last season. If he stays healthy and plays at a similar level, he could be in line for something in the region of $3 million on the open market in 2024. A legitimate top-line star for several seasons, Rantanen will be sacked a year in the process, setting new career highs in goals, assists and points. Although this is already his eighth season of some NHL action under his belt, he's still only 25 years old and will hit the open market at 28. The cap is then expected to be slightly higher than it is now and he will still be in his prime. O'Connor has only one full NHL season under his belt (last season) but was a valuable roleplayer in the last six, and the Avs opted for early team-friendly overtime. As long as he continues to be a regular and produces around 20-25 points, he will be able to make a few hundred thousand more on his next trade. Georgiev was acquired by Rangers last summer when Colorado realized they could not bring Darcy Kuemper back. He's had some good and bad moments with New York, and that allowed Colorado to sign him at a price close to what veteran backups who can get 30 starts to the open market can fetch. If Georgiev can play like a legitimate starter with the Avalanche, it will be a very team-friendly deal, while the keeper could get closer to $5.5m on his next deal. MacKinnon has been one of the top bargains in the NHL in recent years as one of the league's top forwards while being paid like a high-end second-liner. That will change in a year when he starts the richest deal in NHL history (a mark he will likely only hold for one season). It's difficult to add value with this type of contract, but he should still have some high-end seasons in him. It looked doubtful for a while whether or not Colorado would be able to keep Landeskog, but they finally struck a deal a year ago. As long as he can stay at the top they will be fine with this deal but with the style of play he brings he is likely to be a constant risk of injury towards the end of the contract. He will be absent for a couple of months after undergoing knee surgery earlier this week, so Colorado will have some near-term LTIR flexibility if they need to use it. Nichushkin's deal raised some eyebrows as a maximum signing valued at more than $6 million certainly carries some risk for someone who has only surpassed 15 goals once in his career (last season). Sakic clearly believes in the fit and early returns are certainly impressive as he finished second in the league ahead of the weekend. As long as it produces at least like a high-end second liner, they will see a good return. In an offensive environment like Colorado, Lehkonen could produce like a second liner and would offer strong value when added to his defensive play. But if he dips into the third line, the deal could end up being a little over market value. He logs heavy minutes and plays in all situations so he's not one to protect. A few injury woes aside, his next contract will almost certainly set a new NHL record for a fullback. Girard has been a speculative trade option if Colorado needs to move a core player to create some cap flexibility, but he's a legitimate top-four defender signed in his prime. If it ever gets to the point where they have to move him there should be plenty of interest as so far he is offering a good return on his contract. Manson was another trade deadline pick-up that held on, deciding that a small raise to stay was better than testing the open market. It's a decision that made sense given that his production has dwindled in recent years and he's been used as a third player by the Avs, not as a top 4 player like they pay him. He needs to be closer to the 20 minute mark for this contract to work well. Right now their cap room is pretty low as they are taking extra players with them due to Landeskog and Helm's injuries (they will recall Megna and Kaut soon). They have some LTIR leeway with Landeskog's injury for a few months if they at least need it. Colorado already has over $70 million in signings for next season for just 13 players, which doesn't leave them much room to maneuver; They've already spent Johnson's expiring contract on MacKinnon's extension. In 2024-25 that drops to $62.425 million for nine players if they have to pay big if they want to keep Toews in the group. Accordingly, it's hard to imagine them acquiring key non-loan players in the near future as they need all the cap space they can get just to keep their existing core intact, let alone expand on it. Customize your email to get the latest news on your favorite sports, teams and schools. Related slideshow: Every NHL player scores 500 goals (provided by Yardbarker)

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The Spanish influence is sending PSG high this season

The Spaniards are growing in importance in a side that has proved resilient so far this season. (Author: Gardener)

this seasonThe six Spaniards in the PSG squad are becoming an integral part of a side that has been unbeatable this season. PSG were relentless at the start of the season and a lot of the blame lies with the Spanish players. The market of Luis Campos, the club's new sports advisor, eventually brought up to six players from the Iberian Peninsula to the squad: Sergio Ramos, Fabián Ruiz, Carlos Soler, Juan Bernat, Pablo Sarabia and Sergio Rico. The first, Sergio Ramos, has gone from being an outlaw to one of the leaders of the dressing room. Already forgetting the lingering injuries in the soleus that prevented him from doing so last season, the Camero has settled into Galtier's schemes, playing virtually every game and forming an impregnable rear duo with Marquinhos. Imagine telling someone in 2017 that Sergio Ramos, Messi and Neymar will all be teammates at PSG 6 years later. Although going to the World Cup is very difficult for Ramos as Luis Enrique didn't call him up at the last break despite his high level, the Andalusian defender could be the missing piece for PSG to fight for the Champions League. His coach Christophe Galtier has repeatedly publicly reiterated that Ramos is one of the heavyweights in the dressing room. Another player who has gained prominence at PSG is Fabián Ruiz. After a somewhat cold start to the season, the result of the short pre-season he has had as he hardly played at Napoli, the midfielder has smashed the door to job entry completely. Galtier's system change from a 3-4-2-1 to a 4-3-1-2 with more presence in midfield has increased his quality in midfield. Despite not being included in Luis Enrique's latest list, the former Betis player still dreams of a World Cup call-up. Bernat is another player who has earned Galtier's trust. Nuno Mendes' injury a month ago opened the doors for him to take the job, so much so that the Portuguese's loss went almost unnoticed. A year ago he returned to the pitch after almost ten months of inactivity and the fact that he wasn't included in PSG's list to play in the Champions League (he's played a lot this edition) doesn't have him at all touched. His performance has been consistent, he has made up for the absence of Mendes with authority and Galtier has confirmed he has a fully guaranteed footballer for the rotation. From the rest of the Spaniards, apart from Sergio Rico, the third goalkeeper, we must also highlight Carlos Soler and Sarabia. This versatility of playing both in midfield and attacking is a validation for Galtier, who considers him a top-class player although he has yet to adapt to the ever-physical French football. Regarding the Real Madrid youth team, considered the number 12 player if one of the three cracks mentioned above fails, the regularity he values ​​and the sacrifice he shows off the ball are enough to make him a great Alternative to consider in games where Messi, Mbappé or Neymar are not at 100%.

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The questions that will determine the Warriors' renewed title run

The Warriors swear they're past The Punch, but that's far from the only problem the team faces as they begin their quest for a fifth title in nine years. (Author: Gardener)

PunchDub Nation is on its feet as the Warriors receive their rings and watch as the banner of their fourth championship in eight years rises to the rafters. Dub Nation is on its feet as the Warriors receive their rings and watch as the banner of their fourth championship in eight years rises to the rafters. The Golden State Warriors had a certain shine coming into training camp four weeks ago. It's a glow you have after spending the summer celebrating a championship and preparing to defend it next season. Despite losing key rotation players Gary Payton II and Otto Porter Jr. during free agency, the Warriors retooled their bench, adding JaMychal Green and Donte DiVincenzo. Warriors icon Andre Iguodala announced he will be returning to the team for a 19th and final NBA season. That shine continued internally as the Warriors spent five days in Japan for two preseason games. But shortly after they landed back in San Francisco, Golden State was faced with what coach Steve Kerr called "the biggest crisis" of his tenure with the Warriors when video of Draymond Green punching Poole during practice leaked out to the whole world. The team swear the argument is over and that Tuesday's ring night was the ultimate patch for the incident. What impact Green's actions have on the Warriors is a question that will play out throughout the season. Here are the five biggest questions the Warriors are facing for the 2022-23 season: In the season opener against the Los Angeles Lakers, Kerr played an 11-man rotation and nine players recorded more than 15 minutes. All but one active player (Patrick Baldwin Jr.) saw minutes and all but two (Baldwin and Ryan Rollins) played in the first half. That depth is ideal given the situation the Warriors are in now - with Draymond Green and Thompson unwilling to play full minutes and Iguodala unwilling to play at all. But Kerr and his coaching staff will eventually face some tough decisions. "They have 11 guys who probably deserve an opportunity to play," Curry said. “There will be different lineups every night, especially at the beginning of the year. This isn't the first time the Warriors have faced it. They had it last season, but this season's bench - and talent up and down - is deeper than it was a year ago: "This team was a veteran," Kerr said, "this team is made up of young people, but that Talent is really evident.” JaMychal Green and DiVincenzo's additions replace losses from Porter Jr. and Payton II. They're by no means copies, but Green gives the Warriors a ground spacer — he's a career 37 percent 3- Point shooter - defensive presence and a great body in depth.But what makes the difference in depth for the Warriors this season are their youngsters. Jonathan Kuminga and Moses Moody are being asked to play more minutes and play bigger roles in the rotation, while Wiseman center Kevon Looney will support. During the preseason, Kerr said only his sixth man was picked -- Poole Green took several days off the team and apologized to Poole and his family and the organization and said he was ready to take on the work of rebuilding bridges . "It's about making sure our team camaraderie is there," Green said on the day of his return. “You realize when you're playing against a team and they have good camaraderie... Green may be right that playing well together on the pitch is more important than it is in the dressing room. Their season opener against the Lakers showed Green and Poole can coexist on the court and play together, with Poole connecting with Green in a second-quarter pick and roll. But the Warriors have been playing in a bubble since the altercation. They played three preseason games at home and are playing their first three regular season games in San Francisco. How will different fan bases use this against the Warriors? Will players, coaches and leaders be prepared to address it game after game? How will they react if any interaction between Poole and Green takes place? And there are far more questions than answers about the defining trait of this Warriors team and its dynasty. Post-strike, both Poole's and Green's contracts were central topics of discussion for Golden State as it potentially juggled hundreds of millions of dollars. Ten days later, Poole signed a four-year, $140 million extension. Andrew Wiggins also signed for four years and $109 million, preparing the team for a whopping $483 million in taxes. Green has a $27.6 million player option awaiting him next summer, and if he declines it, he will enter free agency in 2024. Green doesn't expect a new deal this year and he said he's not thinking about negotiations right now. With 12 players on next season's roster, the Warriors' salary will already be $215 million and their taxes are $268 million. In this scenario, Draymond Green chooses his player option. Despite the outstanding shooting and offensive firepower that the Warriors are known for, they like to think of themselves as a defense-first team. The Warriors showed it again last season. But Golden State also lost its defensive mastermind to Sacramento in assistant coach Mike Brown. Golden State promoted Kenny Atkinson after leaving the Charlotte head coaching position and is considered the new defensive coordinator, but Kerr told ESPN the team is also relying heavily on assistant coach Chris DeMarco to lead the defense this season . "Mike got a lot of support from Chris last year," Kerr said. Consider: The Warriors allowed 106.6 points per 100 possessions last season and are second only to their Finals mates, the Boston Celtics, according to ESPN Stats & Information. They denied 91% of their opponents' shots last season, the second-highest percentage in the NBA, according to Second Spectrum. It's no surprise that Draymond Green was - and continues to be - the anchor of the Warriors defense. According to ESPN Stats & Information, Green allowed 0.68 points per direct post, third best of 158 players to defend more than 40 post-ups. But the Warriors lost two of their other key defenders in Payton and Porter. Payton allowed a 45.6% effective field goal percentage in half-court matchups last season, 11th-best out of 254 players per second spectrum. Of 254 players with at least 2,000 half-court games last season, Porter allowed the 12th lowest team points per 100 total court games (91.1), Payton the 13th lowest (91.2) and Green the 40th. -least (93.4). "JaMychal was amazing," Kerr told ESPN. "To be able to add a big, strong player who ricochets, who boxes, who can defend multiple spots... Last season, the Warriors were able to work their way through injury after injury and weren't healthy until the first game of the first round of the playoffs And even then, they took a hit in the second round when Payton broke his elbow. Thompson missed the first four months of the season as he ended his recovery from back-to-back cruciate ligament and Achilles tendon injuries. Wiseman, who the Warriors say he won't play under any specific strain management this season, missed the entire season, Green missed 28 games from mid-January to mid-March with a back injury, Curry missed the last 12 games of the regular season with one Broken foot Iguodala only played in 31 games. According to Spotrac, 12 players missed a combined 308 games for Golden State last season, the fourth-most in the NBA. Iguodala's availability this season is still a question and the Warriors aren't counting on him to play big minutes. Thompson missed the first two preseason games in Japan due to lack of fitness and starts the regular season with a minute limit. After playing 20 minutes in the Warriors' season opener, Thompson is unlikely to have a major bump against the Nuggets on Friday. "I don't think it's going to be very long [before I can play my full minutes]," Thompson said Thursday afternoon. I keep working with the minutes that I play and if we keep winning then we're so deep that I'm in a very fortunate position to [be able to slack off]." Last season, the Warriors had the sixth-oldest roster of the season NBA: They're 10 this season. But if the Warriors are hoping for a repeat, a repeat of last year's unfortunate injury streak will make it harder.

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The Lakers' slow start underscores major roster concerns

LOS ANGELES — The Lakers offered some self-assessments after a six-point loss to the Clippers on Thursday night. LeBron James on the team: "I thought all night we were playing right." Russell Westbrook on his own night: "Solid. played hard. Anything you could ask for.” Coach Darvin Ham on the game-to-game growth: “I'm happy. i will sleep well I won't be angry or depressed." It's presumptuous to... (Author: Gardener)

LakersLakers guard Russell Westbrook watches the first half of their game against the Clippers Thursday night at Crypto.com Arena. Westbrook was 0-11 from the field and 0-6 from 3-point range in the 103-97 loss, but he's not the only Laker struggling to shoot two games into the season. LOS ANGELES — The Lakers offered some self-assessments after a six-point loss to the Clippers on Thursday night. LeBron James on the team: "I thought all night we were playing right." Russell Westbrook on his own night: "Solid. played hard. However, it's presumptuous to think that Lakers fans will feel the same way after a 2-0 start. The team may have played the Clippers harder than the Warriors just two nights earlier, but both games highlighted some serious shortcomings - lingering preseason concerns that are feeding into the games that matter. Through their first two games, the Lakers have the lowest offensive rating in the NBA (94.5 points per 100 possessions). While the small sample size went up against two expected title contenders and with a mostly overhauled roster, early results were staggering: The Lakers are 19 to 85 from 3-point range and contributing to their 38.8% shooting overall. The Lakers dominated the key categories against the Clippers, impressively winning the turnover fight 23-10 and scoring 21 points from freebies. On the other hand, many points were left behind: The Lakers missed 23 shot attempts directly after a Clippers turnover or a defensive rebound. Ham acknowledged those momentum-killing failures but said he expects his team to see it through. "I mean, it's human nature to be disappointed when you get a big stop and run and the ball is buzzing around, player after player, the guy shoots it and it doesn't go down," he said. The biggest reason Ham has given his team hope is because of QSQ, a metric that measures shot quality based on a number of factors. Ham said after the season-opening loss to Golden State that the Lakers' shot quality was the highest of any four teams playing that night, including the Warriors. But that might be a half-baked approach to looking at the problem: According to NBA tracking data, the Lakers have only made 13 of 58 of their 3-pointers (22.4%) where a defender is 4 feet or more away ( "open" or "wide open" by NBA metrics). While Westbrook has garnered a lot of attention, particularly after his 0-on-11 (0-on-6 from the depths) night against the Clippers, it's worth noting that another suspected shooter also failed to deliver their 3-point attempts: Patrick Beverley (2 for 11), Lonnie Walker IV (2 for 12) and Kendrick Nunn (3 for 10). Even James, who shot nearly 36% from long range last season, is only 5 for 18. The team said Thursday the disappointing percentages didn't change the message: keep shooting. Ham's system of four-out, one-in depends in part on the outside shot threat. "We probably had a few bad shots, but that's part of the game," said Walker, who posted a game-high 26 points while shooting 9 for 21 overall. But it's only game two. I think as the season progresses we'll find our rhythm as a team and bond.” That could give the Lakers more confidence if that's the only issue. The Lakers also felt their lack of depth on the wing, especially against the Clippers. That has only gotten worse with an injury to Troy Brown Jr., who has already missed preseason and the first two games. Matt Ryan, who secured the last spot on the squad the weekend before the season started, played 12½ minutes. Against 6-foot-7, 225-pound Kawhi Leonard, the Lakers most commonly fielded 6-3 Westbrook and 6-6 Juan Toscano-Anderson, both of whom weigh at least 15 pounds less. The Southern California News Group confirmed that Moe Harkless, a 10-year veteran who was recently released from Houston, trained Wednesday for the Lakers, who are considering beefing up their wing defenses (The Athletic first reported the meeting). Most of the attention, of course, goes to Westbrook, who failed to fire a single shot at a time when notable NBA votes belie his apparent lack of joy on the court. But Westbrook came out on the defensive end with five steals, enough for James to rally support behind his embattled teammate. "I've had bad nights of shooting. Everyone in this league has had bad shooting nights. James said. "I thought he played a great game. He was consistent defensively. ... He just wasn't firing any shots. The Lakers could maybe flush it going forward - but the fans are." may not be as forgiving without a quick turnaround.

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How to watch La Liga football for free

The game will kick off at 3 p.m. on ESPN+. (Author: Gardener)

La LigaSeville: How to watch La Liga Soccer freeReal Madrid's Vinicius Junior, left, celebrates after scoring the first during the Spanish La Liga soccer match between Real Madrid and Osasuna at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, Spain on Sunday, October 2 goal scored by his team , 2022. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)APReal Madrid host Sevilla in a LaLiga game on Saturday October 22 at 15:00 CEST. EUROPEAN DAYLIGHT TIME. The match will be played at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in Madrid, Spain and will not be broadcast on traditional cable television channels. Instead, fans can follow the La Liga match by subscribing to the ESPN+ streaming service.Real Madrid pull off an impressive win over Elche on Wednesday, winning 3-0. Among the three goalscorers was Ballon d'Or winner Karim Benzema, who scored his team's second goal in the 75th minute. This victory allowed Real Madrid to remain at the top of La Liga standings with 28 points and continue to part ways with Barcelona in second place. Sevilla sit in mid-table in 12th place with 10 points. It's a 1-1 draw against Vilencia, with Kike Salas in the 90th+11th minute. minute the red card was awarded. What time does this game start? The game will not be broadcast on traditional cable TV channels. The game will be available on smart TVs and streaming devices via ESPN+. Live Stream Info: ESPN+ - The game will be broadcast on ESPN's premium streaming service, ESPN+, which will be broadcasting many La Liga games this season. Fans can subscribe to watch games for $9.99 a month or $99.99 for a whole year Ballon d'Or winner couldn't bear to have another of his goals discredited. He had already scored twice but neither had been counted for offside. The third scored, however, and Madrid beat Elche 3-0 on Wednesday and extended their lead in the Spanish league after beating Barcelona in the first 'Clásico' of the season on Sunday. Madrid built a six-point lead over their Catalan Rivals who host seventh-placed Villarreal on Thursday. Madrid remain the only undefeated team in the league. Earlier, the start of the game between Real Sociedad and Mallorca was delayed by around 15 minutes after a Sociedad fan fell ill in the stands and later died. Benzema, who won the Ballon d'Oder player of the year award on Monday, had his goals disallowed for offside in the sixth and 61st minutes. He also ensured that a goal by David Alaba was ruled out for offside on the 26th. All calls came after video verification. However, Benzema's goal from inside the box in the 75th after a Rodrygo heel assist counted and the French striker was able to laugh after Manzano eventually confirmed the goal. "It's the first time they call to score three goals for my team," said 21-year-old Rodrygo. "It was a weird game but in the end we're glad we scored three more goals and got the win." Federico Valverde had opened the scoring in the 11th with a shot with the outside of his left foot from just outside the box .Substitute Marco Asensio sealed the win after another Rodrygo assist in the 89th..Madrid goalkeeper Andriy Lunin, replacing the injured Thibaut Courtois, showed excellent reflex and saved a Carlos Clerc header to level the game in the 70th minute .Elche, the only team that could still win in the Spanish league this season, has had two draws in a row, including at the weekend in Valencia. Mikel Merino scored in the sixth minute as Real beat Sociedad Mallorca 1-0 at home to claim their eighth straight win in all competitions. The start of the game was delayed after a Sociedad fan fell ill. Paramedics were called to help him in the stands and took him to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead. The club and players dedicated the win to the fan and family Spanish League, two points clear of Atlético Madrid, who drew 1-1 at home to Rayo Vallecano on Tuesday. It was the fifth straight league win for Sociedad. Mallorca, without a win in four league games, fell to 15th place. Real Betis slipped to fifth after playing a goalless draw away to Cádiz. Penultimate leaders Cádiz, still without a win at home, have drawn four straight games. It had its chances to grab the win on Wednesday but couldn't get past Betis goalkeeper Claudio Bravo. Sergio Leon scored twice in five minutes in the second half as Valladolid beat Celta Vigo 4-1 at home to celebrate their second win in four games. Roque Mesa and Joaquín Fernández also scored for the club of former Brazilian star Ronaldo, who moved up to 11th place. Óscar Rodríguez scored for Celta, who have lost three times in a row and have fallen to 13th place.

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We found out about Brittney Griner's condition on her birthday

In an interview with her attorneys, the WNBA superstar revealed more details about her conditions in a Russian jail cell. (Author: Gardener)

Brittney Griner'sThe crowd went wild when Golden State Warriors superstar Steph Curry received his NBA championship ring Wednesday night. But the team captain calmed the arena rather than basking in the moment, saying, "We want to continue to leverage our platform and the opportunity to salute a very special member of the basketball community. Today is Brittney Griner's birthday; She is 32 years old. Let's continue to get her name out there, and we're praying." Curry then aptly called Griner "unjustly detained" in Russia, and in a pointed statement to the Biden administration said, "We hope she comes home soon, that everyone's Part of helping bring her home.” This got Griner some much-needed attention. The basketball star, who faces nine years in a Russian prison camp for the "crime" of having two vape cartridges in her luggage, is suffering. According to an article in the New York Times, this world-class athlete is only allowed to be outside for an hour a day. She shares a small cell with two other prisoners. Boykov told the Times, "When it's hot outside, it's too hot, and when it's cold outside, it's too cold." Arranging calls to her family has proved nearly impossible. She has not been able to speak to her parents or siblings since her arrest in February and has only spoken to her wife, Cherelle, twice. Boykov said after visiting Griner, "She wasn't in as good a condition as I could sometimes find her. She's not absolutely convinced that America can bring her home. Secretary of State Antony Blinken says securing the freedom of those detained abroad is his top priority, which includes another United States person detained in Russia, Paul Whelan. And yet efforts by former Ambassador to the United Nations Bill Richardson to negotiate their release were reportedly discouraged by the government. Richardson is "cautiously optimistic" that he can reach an agreement to secure their freedom by the end of the year. But, as the Times reported, “U. S. officials have publicly discouraged such private negotiations, saying they are not helpful to their efforts.” This is a standard government position on these matters, especially when it comes to a country that has hostilities with the United States Has. But it is also absolutely the wrong attitude. If Richardson can make a deal, it should be supported and celebrated. If he's full of hot air—a definite possibility—then let his failure to secure her freedom expose that. Joe Biden says he will only speak to Vladimir Putin at the upcoming G20 in Bali if Griner's release is the top priority. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said they had not received a serious "counter-offer" to their prisoner swap efforts, which certainly implies that Biden's people offered Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, whose release had previously been seen as Putin's goal was targeting Griner. If Putin actually rejects Bout and even refuses to negotiate with the Biden administration, it points to a much longer road ahead for Griner. Even with Russia's strict drug laws, nine years for two cartridges is unheard of. (And yes, the US would have a stronger leg to stand on if today it offered blanket amnesty to every single person incarcerated in our jails for marijuana possession.) A fascinating detail to glean from interviews with their What emerged from lawyers is that Griner dies of time reading Dostoyevsky's depressing novel Demons, in which God's existence is confirmed by the presence of suffering. However, Griner's ordeal is reminiscent of a quote from perhaps his most famous novel, Crime and Punishment, in which he writes, "Break what needs to be broken, once and for all, that's all, and take the suffering." At the very least What we should do is take Steph Curry's words to heart and continue to hold a candle for Griner, continue to demand that the Biden administration do everything in its power -- including using private negotiators -- and Griner's suffering to our own power.

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The Lakers' slow start underscores major roster concerns

The team is 19-85 from 3-point range and just 13-58 on tries when a defender is 4ft or further away (considered "open" or "wide open" by NBA metrics). (Author: Gardener)

LakersLakers guard Russell Westbrook watches the first half of their game against the Clippers Thursday night at Crypto.com Arena. Westbrook was 0-11 from the field and 0-6 from 3-point range in the 103-97 loss, but he's not the only Laker struggling to shoot two games into the season. LOS ANGELES — The Lakers offered some self-assessments after a six-point loss to the Clippers on Thursday night. LeBron James on the team: "I thought all night we were playing right." Russell Westbrook on his own night: "Solid. played hard. However, it's presumptuous to think that Lakers fans will feel the same way after a 2-0 start. The team may have played the Clippers harder than the Warriors just two nights earlier, but both games highlighted some serious shortcomings - lingering preseason concerns that are feeding into the games that matter. Through their first two games, the Lakers have the lowest offensive rating in the NBA (94.5 points per 100 possessions). While the small sample size went up against two expected title contenders and with a mostly overhauled roster, early results were staggering: The Lakers are 19 to 85 from 3-point range and contributing to their 38.8% shooting overall. The Lakers dominated the key categories against the Clippers, impressively winning the turnover fight 23-10 and scoring 21 points from freebies. On the other hand, many points were left behind: The Lakers missed 23 shot attempts directly after a Clippers turnover or a defensive rebound. Ham acknowledged those momentum-killing failures but said he expects his team to see it through. "I mean, it's human nature to be disappointed when you get a big stop and run and the ball is buzzing around, player after player, the guy shoots it and it doesn't go down," he said. The biggest reason Ham has given his team hope is because of QSQ, a metric that measures shot quality based on a number of factors. Ham said after the season-opening loss to Golden State that the Lakers' shot quality was the highest of any four teams playing that night, including the Warriors. But that might be a half-baked approach to looking at the problem: According to NBA tracking data, the Lakers have only made 13 of 58 of their 3-pointers (22.4%) where a defender is 4 feet or more away ( "open" or "wide open" by NBA metrics). While Westbrook has garnered a lot of attention, particularly after his 0-on-11 (0-on-6 from the depths) night against the Clippers, it's worth noting that another suspected shooter also failed to deliver their 3-point attempts: Patrick Beverley (2 for 11), Lonnie Walker IV (2 for 12) and Kendrick Nunn (3 for 10). Even James, who shot nearly 36% from long range last season, is only 5 for 18. The team said Thursday the disappointing percentages didn't change the message: keep shooting. Ham's system of four-out, one-in depends in part on the outside shot threat. "We probably had a few bad shots, but that's part of the game," said Walker, who posted a game-high 26 points while shooting 9 for 21 overall. But it's only game two. I think as the season progresses we'll find our rhythm as a team and bond.” That could give the Lakers more confidence if that's the only issue. The Lakers also felt their lack of depth on the wing, especially against the Clippers. That has only gotten worse with an injury to Troy Brown Jr., who has already missed preseason and the first two games. Matt Ryan, who secured the last spot on the squad the weekend before the season started, played 12½ minutes. Against 6-foot-7, 225-pound Kawhi Leonard, the Lakers most commonly fielded 6-3 Westbrook and 6-6 Juan Toscano-Anderson, both of whom weigh at least 15 pounds less. The Southern California News Group confirmed that Moe Harkless, a 10-year veteran who was recently released from Houston, trained Wednesday for the Lakers, who are considering beefing up their wing defenses (The Athletic first reported the meeting). Most of the attention, of course, goes to Westbrook, who failed to fire a single shot at a time when notable NBA votes belie his apparent lack of joy on the court. But Westbrook came out on the defensive end with five steals, enough for James to rally support behind his embattled teammate. "I've had bad nights of shooting. Everyone in this league has had bad shooting nights. James said. "I thought he played a great game. He was consistent defensively. ... He just wasn't firing any shots. The Lakers could maybe flush it going forward - but the fans are." may not be as forgiving without a quick turnaround.

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The Warriors have two big questions following the Wiggins extension - one concerns Draymond's future

Because of this, the Warriors could be heading for the largest luxury tax bill in NBA history. (Author: Gardener)

WigginsHow expensive will the Golden State Warriors roster be after Saturday's extensions with guard Jordan Poole and forward Andrew Wiggins? Days before the start of their title defense on Tuesday, the Warriors were busy on Saturday finalizing deals with two players who would otherwise have become free agents next summer. Golden State faced a deadline Monday to secure an extension with Poole, who is entering the final season of his rookie contract and would have become a restricted free agent. That leaves a big question for the Warriors: Green, who can become an unrestricted free agent next summer if he turns down a $27.6 million player option. Green's situation is complicated by both Golden State's massive luxury tax bill and practice disputes earlier this month, in which he beat Poole. Let's take a look at the Warriors' payroll projects and where Green could fit in. While Golden State undoubtedly paid full freight for the Poole expansion, which I've analyzed here, it certainly looks like Wiggins took a discount to stay at bay. Like Steven Adams and CJ McCollum, Wiggins has signed an extension that pays him less in the first season than 2022-23, the last year of his current maximum contract. That wasn't surprising for Adams and McCollum, players who will be in their 30s during these overtimes and likely won't offer as much value on the pitch. Admittedly, the Minnesota portion of Wiggins' extension was a disappointment, failing to develop into the star the Timberwolves projected for the former No. To some extent, Golden State may have been helped by the fact that most cap-ranked teams are more likely to rebuild next summer than rivals who desperately need Wiggins' skills. (One possible exception: the Los Angeles Lakers, who could offer Wiggins far more than his starting salary of $24 million in this extension if they hadn't added long-term salary.) Had Wiggins signed a shorter-term extension, he could benefit from an increasing salary cap to have. By 2025/26, the third season of Wiggins' new deal, his $28 million salary (according to ESPN's Bobby Marks) might look typical of the average starter on the wing. Poole and Wiggins renewals give the Warriors $182 million in committed salary for 10 players for 2023-24, including team options for Jonathan Kuminga, Moses Moody and James Wiseman (Golden State has until October 31 to exercise these) , but no player options for Green and newcomer Donte DiVincenzo. That's already enough to put the Warriors $20 million over the projected luxury tax limit before dealing with Green, a first-round pick or filling out the roster. If Green exercises his player option, Golden State would almost certainly surpass this year's LA Clippers, who are paying $41 million in taxes, with the largest payment in NBA history. (The Warriors are currently just behind the Clippers on more than $39 million in taxes, with the possibility of increasing that total by filling their 15th roster spot.) Like Golden State's tax bill projects through ongoing negotiations between the league and could be influenced his players' association on a new collective agreement. Critics have pointed out that Golden State -- along with the Clippers -- opposes the tax's goal of creating pay equity. In practice, the tax often serves as a hard cap for small market teams, but not for high-volume ones. Alternatively, the Warriors have lamented that they are dealing with massive tax payments to keep stars they designed or, in Wiggins' case, acquired through trade rather than signing to free agency. I don't accept this argument because lower-earning teams (especially the Oklahoma City Thunder) often have to choose between players they designed and developed. Additionally, Wiggins' addition can be traced to two players (Kevin Durant, later signed and traded for D'Angelo Russell) who were added as free agents. Based on this debate, I don't anticipate any significant changes to the tax system that would enable Golden State to decide how much to pay to keep this team together. That decision will be influenced by how well Green rebuilds trust with his teammates after "the punch", how well he's playing this season and how Kuminga and Wiseman are developing. Though Green pushed for an extension, the Warriors are in no rush to take action. The same factors that depressed Wiggins' market next summer will impact Green, making it likely he will exercise his option and both sides consider a new long-term deal next year.

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RHOBH Star comments on Denise Richards lingerie pic

A Bravo star commented on Denise Richards' Instagram post. (Author: Gardener)

RHOBH StarOn September 16, 2022, "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" star Denise Richards took to Instagram to share a picture of herself in red lingerie. "❤️ #spicysaturday," read the caption of the post. Quite a few fans flocked to the post's comments section to compliment the actress. 🙏,” wrote one commenter. RHOBH star Sutton Stracke was also quick to comment on the post. 😹😹😹 😽💗,” wrote the mother of three. Richards responded to Stracke by writing, "@suttonstracke kinda😂 luv you Sutton." A Reddit user shared Stracke's interaction with Richards on the Bravo Real Housewives subreddit. Several Bravo fans shared that they appreciated Stracke's comment. "She's so supportive but in a quirky and funny way," one commenter wrote. The cure for quirkiness and Rhea's clumsiness," chimed in a fourth Reddit user. On August 24, 2022, Stracke shared a picture of Sanjit Das appearing in RHOBH Season 12 Episode 12 with her Instagram followers. She implied that she and Das were in a relationship in the post's caption. "Good things come from #rhobh💎," Stracke wrote. During a June 2022 episode of Access Hollywood's Housewives Nightcap, Stracke spoke about Das. She claimed that "he's cool and smart and nice". She also spoke briefly about her date with Das, which was featured on RHOBH. "You'll know that I'll be myself and eventually put my foot in my mouth, say something very strange, but we had actually, we had started talking around Thanksgiving, we're like texting and our texts are." funny and i like funny people he is very funny so you know there are cameras around. It was awkward. I was clumsy than him," said Stracke. Speaking to Access Hollywood's Housewives Nightcap, Stracke opened up about the cast's journey to Aspen. She revealed that she was reluctant to go on vacation because she no longer wanted to argue with her co-stars. "I kind of got tired of being yelled at and — or just didn't feel like most of these girls liked me, so I was like, why am I even going, I don't like the snow, I just don't like it. I didn't like that, I had to spend a fortune on new winter clothes that I will never wear again," says Stracke.

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Sorry folks, Black Friday has already started. But don't worry if you miss out on early sales.

Buyers may find the early sales a good way to save money on gifts now. But don't panic if you're not already in the holiday spirit. (Author: Gardener)

Black FridayTarget and Amazon are starting the hot month this month with big discount campaigns. Target and Amazon are starting the hot month this month with big discount campaigns. Shoppers may find early sales a great way to save money on gifts now. A September holiday shopping study by global news outlet Morning Consult found that "retailers' current aggressive pricing campaigns may point to an 'always-on' discount strategy into year-end." That should bring relief to those hoping to skip dawn patrol and avoid shopping cart rushes the day after Thanksgiving (November 25 this year). "While many people say they're trying to spend less this year, their actual spending projections are very similar to 2021," said Claire Tassin, retail and e-commerce analyst at Morning Consult, in an email. "We're going to see people compromise more to make up for inflated prices." The frenzy of early holiday sales shows retailers are competing for "a piece of this pie," says Trae Bodge, smart shopping expert at TrueTrae.com . “Consumers have limited spending, so retailers are hoping to encourage them to shop early and spend [in their stores] compared to the competition,” says Bodge. Target's Deal Days ran Oct. 6-8, while Amazon's Prime Early Access Sale -- unofficially dubbed Prime Day 2 -- runs on Oct. 11-12. Both retailers are touting big savings on tons of products including home goods, electronics, clothing and toys. Amazon is almost guaranteed to be discounting its popular Alexa devices, and will be unveiling a new top 100 list with a curated selection of the best deals (if you're worried about understanding all of this). Amazon sales are exclusive to Prime members. The Target sale was open to everyone. Read: Retail sales are recovering, but they're not giving much momentum to the U. While early sales are a good opportunity to get a head start on holiday shopping, Bodge cautions against feeling a false sense of urgency. Heading into gift-giving season with a list of gift recipients, shopping ideas, and a firm holiday budget is the kind of shopping discipline that helps keep people out of debt. Planning will empower you to shop more consciously and avoid the nitpick of an unnecessary impulse purchase. Do your due diligence and compare the price of a product elsewhere before buying in store or online. Bodge says installing a browser extension that scans the web for promo codes is an easy way to save "even more on top of retail sales." She likes CouponCabin. A longer discount season also means less pressure on you. You can make a deal or stick with it, with fewer repercussions. "The beauty is that many retailers will offer extended price protection," says Bodge. "If you buy something now and later see it for a lower price, you can request a refund for the difference," she says. Target's Holiday Price Match Guarantee, for example, runs longer this year, from October 6th to December 24th. Many reputable retailers have been known to extend return windows to early January for gifts purchased now. Wondering why the topic of supply chains hasn't come up yet? In a slight twist, some stores might actually be overstocked this year. A case in point is casual wear, says Bodge. Retailers have focused on hoodies and joggers during the pandemic, but with many people now returning to the office (in regular pants, mind you), stores will look to shed a surplus of tracksuits, she says. Furniture can also be present in large quantities. "Consumers should pay attention to what they really need to buy and not buy unnecessary things because they are heavily discounted," says Bodge. See: Butter, Garage Doors and SUVs: Why Shortages Are Still the Order of the Day Even After 2½ Years of the Pandemic). Even if you miss the early sales on Target and Amazon, there are more to come. "Retailers will compete to generate that excitement throughout the holiday shopping season," says Bodge.

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