Gortat on the Wizards home woes

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Gortat on the Wizards home woes

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ALAMEDA, Calif. Byron Maxwell Jersey . - The Oakland Raiders signed special teams standout Taiwan Jones to a three-year extension on Monday that keeps him under contract through 2017. Jones still had one year remaining on his rookie deal but was allowed to negotiate an extension for the first time this off-season. General manager Reggie McKenzie kept a speedster originally picked by late owner Al Davis who emerged as a top special teams player after struggling to make it as a running back. Jones is a Bay Area native who is active in the community and very popular with Raiders fans. "I was excited when they came to me about the extension," Jones said. "It is definitely a blessing for a local kid to be part of the Raiders turnaround. Ive been an underdog all my life, so I think its very fitting for me to remain here. Im definitely excited about it." Jones was originally selected by Oakland as a running back in the fourth round in 2011 out of Eastern Washington after running a 4.33-second 40-yard dash before the draft. That speed and 2,955 yards rushing and 36 touchdowns in two seasons as a running back in college led Davis to select him. But Jones struggled with injuries and ball security his first two seasons. He had 22 carries for 94 yards and four catches for 36 yards and averaged 18.7 yards on 10 kickoff returns as he struggled to find a role in the NFL. The Raiders moved Jones to cornerback last season but he did not play on defence. Jones made his impact on special teams, where he was credited with 13 solo tackles and two assists. Oakland heavily promoted Jones for the Pro Bowl but he did not make the team. "Its rare to see and to know that my local team wants me to stay home, and its just a blessing," he said. "Im glad to be part of it, happy to remain here and there are big things coming that I am happy to be part of it. I feel good about next year. Obviously, I was able to do a lot of good things on special teams last year. Unfortunately, I didnt make the Pro Bowl last year, but that is something Im shooting for this year." Jones also got some time at running back last season because of injuries and finished with five carries for 23 yards and two catches for 55 yards. Cliff Avril Seahawks Jersey . - Adam Scott didnt have to look as far down the leaderboard to find players who suddenly are a real threat to win at Bay Hill. Max Unger Womens Jersey .C. -- The Charlotte Bobcats said head coach Steve Clifford underwent a successful procedure Friday to have two stents placed in his heart.WASHINGTON -- The doubts raised about the Indiana Pacers were more than justified. The way they dispatched the Washington Wizards shows that perhaps the Pacers have dismissed any and all dysfunction. Roy Hibbert revived himself in Game 2. Team defence smothered the way to a win in Game 3. Paul George went off for 39 points in Game 4. And, after an ugly Game 5, David West came up big in the clincher. West scored 29 points Thursday night, the Pacers blew a 16-point second-half lead but pulled away late in a 93-80 win that ousted the Wizards in six games. "With all the adversity, we kept pulling together," West said. "Guys just showed unbelievable grit, unbelievable toughness." So, for all their mysterious slumps and chemistry curiosities, the Pacers are back where they were last season -- playing the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference finals. Game 1 against the two-time defending NBA champions is Sunday in Indianapolis. "We just keep a bubble," said Hibbert, whose off-and-on disappearing act was one of the more baffling late-season developments. "We dont try to let our emotions show too much. Sometimes it does. But we stuck together." Indiana took Miami to seven games a year ago. If the Pacers spread the wealth the way they did against the Wizards, LeBron James and the Heat could be in for a tough series. On Thursday, it was Wests turn. He went 13 for 26 from the field -- a career playoff-high in shot attempts. His pair of jumpers, including a tough fade-away, started a game-ending 20-6 run after Bradley Beals 3-pointer gave the Wizards a one-point lead with 8 1/2 minutes to play. "When David West has that look, when hes assertive and he demands the ball, I know were in good hands," said George, who was just 4 for 11 and scored 12 points. "Hes never failed us when hes given us that look and hes told us in the huddles, Get me the ball." Marcin Gortat scored 19 points, and John Wall had 12 points and nine assists for the Wizards, who ended their best playoff run in decades. Washington won a playoff series for the first time since 2005 and a second-round game for the first time since 1982. The Wizards were ultimately undone by an inability to win at home, going just 1-4 aat the Verizon Center and 5-1 on the road in the playoffs. Russell Wilson Womens Jersey. The future looks bright, however, with youngsters Wall and Beal manning the backcourt. "Nobody expected us to be here," Wall said. "I think a lot of teams respect us now. We definitely made Indiana earn it." They appeared to have a fix on the home-court demons when Beal stole a rebound from Hibbert, then hit the 3-pointer that put the Wizards up 74-73. But that was Washingtons only lead of the second half. The Wizards went five minutes without a point, including a span of three turnovers in four possessions, and scored only two field goals the rest of the way. "We spent so much energy trying to just make that comeback," Beal said, "we just ended up being dead at the end." The Pacers were 33-7 on Jan. 20 before limping to the finish, barely holding on to the conferences No. 1 seed. Things didnt look much better when they were pushed to seven games in the first round by eighth-seeded Atlanta, or when they lost Game 1 at home to the Wizards. Then after winning three in a row, there was the embarrassing Game 5, when Indy lost by 23 and was outrebound 62-23. "Nobody was happy about it," Indiana coach Frank Vogel said. "And they came out and played angry." The Wizards had to reschedule a Lady Gaga concert to host the game, upsetting the singers fans and prompting an apology from team owner Ted Leonsis. Instead of Little Monsters in the arena, there were big ones -- such as a 56-40 deficit early in the third quarter. But the Wizards answered with an 11-2 run capped by Walls 1-on-3 transition layup, Washingtons first fast-break basket. Wall was particularly assertive at the start of the fourth quarter, but the Pacers defence held firm when it mattered, with nary a sign of adversity. "Weve been through it all this season," said Lance Stephenson, who added 17 points. "And I feel like everything that we went through made us stronger." Notes: Wall expressed his support for coach Randy Wittman, whose contract is expiring. ... Gortat on the Wizards home woes: "Maybe we have to be locked before the game in the hotel and have a team breakfast in the morning, have two buses from the hotel to the game." cheap jerseys ' ' '

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