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It’s not looking good for Stephen Curry, or the Warriors’ playoff hopes

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Steph in street clothes is bad news for Golden State.

Steph in street clothes is bad news for Golden State.
Image: Getty Images

Unfortunately for the NBA, this playoff run may be without the Golden State Warriors very quickly. They have been battling injuries all season, and the most recent one might stretch into their first-round series against the Denver Nuggets. While the Nuggets are an interesting story for NBA-heads, they won’t move the needle much for playoff ratings.

Stephen Curry has been out for nearly an entire month with a sprained ligament and bone bruise in his left foot. The Warriors released a statement today. In it they said Curry is progressing, but only started on-court work last week. Curry could possibly participate in a full practice this week, and his status for Game 1 against the Nuggets is “undetermined” and will be based on his “continued progress.”

Steve Kerr talked to the media today and didn’t elaborate much more on what was in the press release. He did say, however, that the team will be scrimmaging on Thursday, and Curry will not take the floor until he can participate in some time of scrimmage. They begin their series with the Nuggets on Saturday and ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that one of his sources says it’s a “close call” on whether or not Curry will suit up for Game 1.

The fact that it has gotten to this point means it is likely that Curry will be compromised whenever he comes back. That shouldn’t be a surprise. He’s 34 years old and dealing with a foot injury he suffered less than 30 days ago. If he had been taking part in on-court activities for the last couple of weeks and the goal was to evaluate him during Thursday’s scrimmage, that would be a great sign. But with his status touch and go, the Warriors will not be able to compete, unless somehow through the wear and tear of a playoff run, the foot gets healthier.

Klay Thompson has just started playing better after returning to the game action in early 2022, after not playing in an NBA basketball game since the 2019 NBA Finals. Draymond Green was well on his way to Defensive Player of the Year, until he got hurt and missed almost 30 games. He returned to the court the game before Curry went down.

The Warriors made some adjustments to their roster during the offseason after a play-in loss last postseason. Jordan Poole has been a revelation in his third season with the Warriors, while Andrew Wiggins’ performance has crashed back to earth following a start in the all-star game. There is talent, but man for man, the Warriors do not have close to the amount of talent on the 64-win Phoenix Suns’ roster. The Warriors will also have some matchup problems with the Memphis Grizzlies, and that is if they can even get past the Nuggets.

While the Nuggets will be depending a little too much on Bones Hyland and Jeff Green, they will still have the best player in the Western Conference, arguably the entire NBA, in Nikola Jokić. He will be a matchup problem for whomever gets the unlucky task of bodying up with him in the paint, or ends up in front of him at the top of the key. Green had better be as healthy as he’s been since December in order to keep Jokić from slicing and dicing the Warriors. He is a playoff vet who will not be intimidated by this core of Warriors that won three championships last decade.

Health is vital for the Warriors to have some success in this postseason. And after finally getting Green back, and Thompson ending the regular season with a 40-point performance, their matchup nightmare is still deep in the process of just trying to get back on the court. Without Curry at full strength they better get ready to use all of the developmental muscle they have to get Kuminga and James Wiseman ready to shoulder a great deal of the load if they want to be championship contenders in 2022-23.





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Chelsea FC: Brilliant Badiashile leading way for new signings as Thiago Silva partnership blossoms

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C

helsea have not conceded a goal in the first 270 minutes that Benoit Badiashile has been on the pitch since his £35million move from Monaco.

His promising early form at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea will hope, hint at better times to come through their new signings.

The arrival of French centre-back Badiashile at the start of last month kick-started a record January spending spree of more than £300m.

After Chelsea were sent spiralling into crisis with defeats by Manchester City and Fulham, Badiashile made his debut in a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace.

After the Blues claimed a further two clean sheets in 0-0 draws away at Liverpool and at home to Fulham, he is building an impressive partnership with Thiago Silva.

Impressive start: Benoit Badiashile has formed a promising partnership with Thiago Silva

/ Getty Images

Badiashile was one of five new signings to feature in Friday’s 0-0 draw with Fulham. He started alongside £106.8m Enzo Fernandez, who started well but faded over 90 minutes, £89.5m Mykhailo Mudryk, who struggled over 45 minutes while carrying a cold, and £30m Noni Madueke, who was bright after being brought on at half-time.

“What a waste of money” was the regular chant from the Fulham fans in the away end.

That felt harsh in Badiashile’s case. With his size and speed, he looks like a perfect partner for 38-year-old veteran Silva.

In addition, he showed the ability to play brilliantly out of Fulham’s well-drilled press and he coped in his duels against Aleksandar Mitrovic.

There is still adaption to be done, as Graham Potter barked instructions about his positioning in relation to Silva.

However, using French to communicate with the former Paris Saint-Germain captain, Badiashile has helped steady the ship in the absence of the injured Wesley Fofana, and with Kalidou Koulibaly out of form.

While still only averaging just 1.05 goals per game in the Premier League, Chelsea will draw more than they win unless their new midfielders and forwards step up.

Arriving in the weeks after Badiashile, the likes of Fernandez, Joao Felix, Mudryk and Madueke have not had as much time to adapt to their surroundings.

With Chelsea still in 10th place and increasingly falling behind in the race to qualify for Europe, they must follow Badiashile’s lead and hit the ground running before time runs out.



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Reporter’s notebook: Jesse Marsch’s Leeds side showed encouraging signs at times but lack of points cost him his job | Football News

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Jesse Marsch was approaching his one-year anniversary as Leeds United head coach before the decision was taken on Monday to relieve him of his duties.

The defeat to Nottingham Forest a day earlier had been the final straw for the Leeds board, who were all aligned in the view that a change was necessary after almost three months without a Premier League win.

The recent statistics paint a grim picture for Leeds. Seven Premier League games without a win and just two wins in the last 17 league games. And against Forest, although they dominated in the first half and created the better chances, a worrying pattern had started to develop which had become a huge concern for fans. Leeds were producing performances with lots of positives, but not enough points.

There is little doubt that a large proportion of the fan base had lost patience with Marsch, and they made their frustrations clear at the full-time whistle on Sunday with calls for a change of head coach.

What is very evident is that Leeds have not kicked on this season. At times there have been really promising signs, but the fans and the board at Leeds wanted more. Marsch will feel that with time he could have delivered more, but he was also realistic enough to know that he was walking a tightrope.

I got to know Jesse well during his 12 months at Elland Road and it was abundantly clear he cared passionately about the club. He understood what it meant to be head coach of Leeds United and what the club meant to the city and the fans. And he has to be given great credit for keeping Leeds in the Premier League last season.

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from the Premier League match between Nottingham Forest and Leeds.

Although it hasn’t worked out for Marsch this season, there is a strong argument to suggest that the next Leeds boss will be in a great position to move the club forward.

Patrick Bamford and Luis Sinisterra are now fit, and the January additions should make the starting line-up stronger. The club has also invested heavily in young players and one of those, Willy Gnonto, has emerged as one of the shining lights of the season.

Those factors have created an expectation that Leeds are better than their current league position, and that means a reluctance to accept another season fighting to avoid the drop. It also means that there are reasons to be optimistic about the future.

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Former Leeds United goalkeeper Paul Robinson believes sacking Jesse Marsch was the right decision as he was given enough time at the club.

The process of finding a replacement for Marsch is already underway and Leeds hope to make a swift appointment. A move for Marcelo Bielsa is highly unlikely, but West Brom boss Carlos Corberan, who worked under Bielsa, is a candidate, while Ange Postecoglou at Celtic has also been linked.

It is also worth noting Leeds have a track record of leftfield appointments, so as they work through their list of targets, there is a good chance that a candidate emerges that could surprise everybody.

In the meantime, Michael Skubala, Paco Gallardo and Chris Armas will take training at Thorp Arch, and will be in the dugout for Wednesday’s Premier League fixture against Manchester United at Old Trafford.

Leeds’ next Premier League fixtures

February 8: Manchester United (A) – kick-off 8pm

February 12: Manchester United (H) – kick-off 2pm, live on Sky Sports

February 18: Everton (A) – kick-off 3pm

February 25: Southampton (H) – kick-off 3pm

March 4: Chelsea (A) – kick-off 3pm

March 11: Brighton (H) – kick-off 3pm

March 18: Wolves (A) – kick-off 3pm



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Tom Brady in his underwear is taking over Twitter

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Um .. oh.

Um .. oh.
Screenshot: Twitter: Tom Brady

It’s Super Bowl week, and if you thought Tom Brady was going to let this week go by without being all up in your timeline…well. Just a week after announcing he’s retiring from football (you’ll never convince me he didn’t play an extra year just to stick it to Adam Schefter), Tom Brady has dropped his first thirst trap on Twitter. Or, attempted thirst trap. Actually, IS this a thirst trap?

As will many things Tom Brady, the attempt to be cool and edgy just winds up being sterile, boring, and kinda sad. A beige man in a beige room in beige underwear with a “pleass clap” look on his face.

And because OF COURSE:

Yes, Tom. We all knew the plug as coming. I’m not sure what color “heather crimson” is supposed to be, but I believe this is what we used to call “puce,” which… meh. The fact that there is something called the “Brady Boxer Brief” is enough to make me want to stick my head in the oven, because you know there are guys in New England burning up the internet right now to wear the same undies as their hero. And even more so because no amount of refusing to mask during COVID, vouching for Antonio Brown, stumping for Donald Trump, or getting a PPP loan during a nationwide pandemic is enough to get people to stop buying what this guy is selling. He’s even gotten to Jane Fonda, for crying out loud.

Of course, this entire thing was set up by Brady’s own brand:

So…whatever. It’s Super Bowl week and everyone is talking about Tom Brady, which is exactly how he wants it to be.



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