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Posted by On April 18, 2018

Professor blasted for calling Barbara Bush an 'amazing racist' who raised a 'war criminal'

An English professor was condemned for calling former First Lady Barbara Bush an ‘amazing racist’ who raised a ‘war criminal’ less than an hour after her death was announced.

According to the Fresno Bee, Randa Jarrar tweeted: ‘Barbara Bush was a generous and smart and amazing racist who, along with her husband, raised a war criminal.

Donald Trump tweets about Stormy Daniels for the first time

‘Fuck outta here with your nice words.’

The bad-taste tweet soon prompted scores of angry replies â€" but Jarrar, who says she is Arab American Muslim, was unrepentant, boasting that she is a tenured professor at Fresno State University who makes $100,000 a year.

She conti nued: ‘I will never be fired.

‘If you’d like to know what it’s like to be an Arab American Muslim American woman with some clout online expressing an opinion, look at the racists going crazy in my mentions right now.

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She continued: ‘What I love about being an American professor is my right to free speech, and what I love about Fresno State is that I always feel protected and at home here


Her ‘war criminal’ remark appeared to be a reference to Barbara’s son George W. Bush, who followed his father George H.W. into the White House and started the Iraq War in 2002.

Shortly afterwards Jarrar set her Twitter account to private, and shortly after Fresno State President Joseph Castro, who she included in one of the inflammatory tweets, distanced the university from her remarks.

He said: ‘On behalf of Fresno State, I extend my deepest condolences to the Bush family on the loss of our former First Lady, Barbara Bush.

‘We share the deep concerns expressed by others over the personal comments made today by professor Randa Jarrar, a professor in the English Department at Fresno State.

“Her statements were made as a private citizen, not as a representative at Fresno State.”

Castro also added: ‘Professor Jarrar’s expressed personal views and commentary are obviously contrary to the core values of our University, which include respect and empathy for individuals with divergent points of view, and a sincere commitment to mutual understanding and progress.’

Mrs Bush’s death was announced Tuesday night, two days after it was revealed she had refused further treatment for her failing health.

The 92 year-old was First Lady from 1989 to 1993 and was hailed across political lines for her common sense approach to life and willingness to hold opinions that ran contrary to official GOP policy.

AdvertisementSource: Google News | Netizen 24 United States


Posted by On April 18, 2018

Trump sours on talking with Mueller after FBI raid of lawyer's office

President Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, exits U.S. Federal Court in Lower Manhattan on Monday. (Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/AFP/Getty Images) April 17 at 8:22 PM Email the author

The FBI seizure of records from President Trump’s personal attorney last week deeply rattled the president â€" souring him on his long-stated preference to sit down for an interview with special counsel Robert S. Mueller III and prompting him to renew efforts to hire more legal firepower, people familiar with the discussions said.

Trump, who had previously expressed a desire to submit to a special counsel interview, changed his mind following the April 9 raid of lawyer Michael Cohen’s office, home and hotel r oom and is now leaning against an interview, according to two people familiar with his turnabout.

The president’s lawyers are still open to talks with Mueller’s office about the possibility and advisers caution that the president frequently changes his mind, but his legal team now sees a Mueller sit-down as less likely.

Trump was infuriated by the seizure of possibly sensitive correspondence involving work that Cohen â€" his close friend, consigliere and personal “fixer” â€" was doing on his behalf and believed Mueller’s team was operating in bad faith, two people familiar with the president’s frustration said.

Trump was so upset, in fact, that he had trouble concentrating on plans that were laid out for him that day by his national security team about potential options for targeted missile strikes on Syria, and told aides he was cool to the idea of doing an interview, said two people familiar with his comments, who spoke on the condition of anony mity to discuss internal deliberations.

After last month’s resignation of attorney John Dowd, the president’s legal team consists primarily of Ty Cobb, the White House lawyer dealing with the investigation, and Jay Sekulow, Trump’s personal attorney on the Russia matter. Trump and his advisers expect the legal team may expand in size as early as the end of this week, according to one person familiar with the discussions.

Both Sekulow and Cobb declined to comment Tuesday.

Trump’s team has contacted Robert C. Bonner, a former federal judge and former member of President George W. Bush’s administration, about representing Trump, two people familiar with the outreach said. Bonner is a former Customs and Border Protection commissioner and is credited with ushering in a more consolidated government approach to securing America’s borders in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Unlike other lawyers the Trump team has approached, Bonner ret ired from his role as a partner at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in 2008 and thus does not have to worry about potential objections from law partners that might prevent him from taking the job.

Bonner declined to comment about his status as a potential candidate to represent Trump.

On the day that news of the Cohen raid broke last week, Sekulow and other Trump advisers were in a preparatory session for a scheduled meeting that afternoon at the special counsel’s office to negotiate final terms for a possible interview with the president.

Sekulow and Cobb had been proponents of having Trump sit down for a limited interview with Mueller’s team on four predetermined topics in hopes of speeding up the conclusion of the probe into the president’s actions.

But the raid alarmed and angered Trump and led to a tense afternoon meeting between Trump advisers and Mueller’s team, according to one person familiar with the talks. The president viewed the r aid on his personal attorney as a breach of his team’s cordial working relationship with Mueller’s investigators and swiftly turned on them, another person said.

“That greatly diminished the trust the team had,” the first person familiar with the president’s reaction to the raid said.

Mark Corallo, a former spokesman for Trump’s legal team, said that unexpected raids like the one executed against Cohen “are generally reserved for mafia dons and drug kingpins.”

“It is not every day that you see no-knock search warrants authorized by a federal judge on a lawyer and a law firm in white-collar matters,” Corallo said. “I don’t know how serious it is for President Trump, but it is very serious for Michael Cohen.”

Mueller’s team had made no prior mention of federal investigators’ focus on Cohen, which they would not be expected to divulge before a pending raid. The special counsel’s office had privately referred its investigative findings about Cohen to the U.S. attorney’s office in the Southern District of New York.

That office conducted the raids last Monday, following several months of investigating Cohen for possible bank fraud, wire fraud and campaign finance violations, according to people familiar with the probe. A search warrant indicated the probe is focused on Cohen’s role in tamping down possible negative publicity for Trump during the campaign and payments that were made during the campaign to women who claimed to have affairs with Trump.

In recent days, Trump has grown increasingly agitated, railing against members of his beleaguered team, said someone familiar with the situation. The president has also been personally involved in the hunt for new members of the legal team, making phone calls to potential additions, this person said.

There is a growing sense that Trump’s lawyers are not prepared for the rigors and challenges still to come in the Mueller probe, altho ugh James Schultz, a former Trump administration lawyer who now works at the law firm Cozen O’Connor, rejected that notion.

“I haven’t seen any indication they are overwhelmed by work,” Schultz said. “They don’t seem overwhelmed to me.”

Within Trump’s orbit, the concern surrounding the raid targeting his lawyer is largely focused on what remains unknown about the dealings of Cohen, whose reputation was for handling Trump’s dirty work. One White House aide described Trump as angry at what appeared to him to be a violation of attorney-client privilege.

Trump’s legal team has struggled for weeks to bring additional lawyers into its ranks.

One outside adviser, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations, said Trump is upset that he hasn’t been able to attract top-notch lawyers, but he has long struggled in business to attract good lawyers because he underpays and sometimes pays late. He is also a difficult client, the adviser added.

New York litigator Marc Kasowitz, who has helped Trump in business disputes and was the original leader of the president’s Russia legal defense, is still involved with Trump’s team and has been helping in the search for new lawyers, two people familiar with the situation said.

Corallo said that while he believes the president deserves top-notch representation, he also understands the particular challenges facing Trump.

“I think the president of the United States â€" no matter what you think of him â€" deserves the best legal talent he can get, and I think a lot of the big law firms have not covered themselves in glory saying no the president,” he said. “Now on the other hand, I do understand why a lot of high-profile lawyers don’t want to take the case.”

Legal struggles have dogged Trump’s presidency. The Trump campaign paid $4 million between January 2017 and March 31, 2018, in legal consulting fees to 13 law firms and Trump Corp., a company run by Trump’s two older sons. The bulk of the fees â€" about $2.7 million â€" have gone to Jones Day, a law firm representing the campaign in investigations by Mueller and several congressional committees into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

The reelection campaigns of sitting presidents typically would spend less in attorneys fees in a nonpresidential cycle, hiring one or two law firms for ongoing campaign finance compliance needs, said Brett Kappel, a Washington campaign finance lawyer. Issues that arise over campaign finance or personnel matters typically are resolved within a year or less, Kappel said.

Since January 2017, however, the president’s 2020 campaign has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars each on law firms representing the president’s oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., Cohen and the president in the special counsel investigation, as well as a new legal challenge from an adult-film star, Federal Election C ommission records show.

Though the expenditures are notably high, there is nothing illegal about the use of campaign funds. Under federal election laws, campaigns can pay for any expenses that relate to their candidacy or activities that occurred while holding elected office.

Rosalind S. Helderman, Alice Crites, Michelle Ye Hee Lee and Anu Narayanswamy contributed to this report.

Source: Google News | Netizen 24 United States


Posted by On April 18, 2018

Why the Bucks should bench Eric Bledsoe for Malcolm Brogdon in Game 3

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Celtics schooled the Bucks in Game 2, pulling away with a 120-106 win at home to advance to a 2-0 series lead. It was the second time Milwaukee lost to a Boston team with an injury list that could double as a starting lineup when healthy.

It was also the second time the Bucks didn’t get the performance they expected from Eric Bledsoe.

Bledsoe scored 12 points on 5-of-13 shooting in Milwaukee’s Game 2 loss to Boston. In Game 1, he scored nine points on 4-of-12 shooting along with five turnovers. Now, with the series heading ba ck to Milwaukee, interim Bucks coach Joe Prunty has to make a decision: Make a change to stop the bleeding, or risk a similar performance â€" and a similar fate â€" at home in Game 3.

Bledsoe was never really the best fit in Milwaukee

When the Bucks traded for Bledsoe mid-season, there was a dual understanding. Yes, this was an interesting (mis)fit: Bledsoe isn’t a shooter, more so a slashing playmaker. His skill-set is comparable to Giannis Antetokounmpo’s. But having Bledsoe was an immediate improvement in the following category: Talent.

We can’t just gloss over his years in Phoenix. Sure, the Suns haven’t made the playoffs since the Steve Nash era, but Bledsoe improved virtually every year, averaging 21.1 points and 6.8 assists in his final full season there. He is a bulldog at point guard â€" a la Kyle Lowry (though not nearly as good a shooter) â€" an explosive athlete, a smart decision-maker off of pick-and-rolls, and a terror in transition. Itâ €™s what made him a sought-after trade target after the Suns slowly crumbled following a banner 2013-14 season.

But that’s not exactly what the Bucks needed. They get all of Bledsoe’s talents and more in Antetokounmpo. He’s the primary ball-handler, the primary threat in transition. There’s no need for two of those, especially when Bledsoe isn’t the most reliable shooter from three-point range.

That’s not to say Bledsoe isn’t a basketball talent. His skill set is just redundant with the Bucks’ main star, the player with the seventh-highest usage rate in the NBA, doing similar things better than Bledsoe on the court at the same time.

Bledsoe can still be of a big help to this Bucks team in the playoffs. A 2-0 series lead isn’t a death sentence, though a team’s odds of winning a playoff series after losing the first two games are drastically lower than they are if they split the first two games.

But Prunty has to make an adjustment in Ga me 3.

That adjustment should be starting Malcolm Brogdon

Jaylen Brown may have been the best player in Game 2, but Giannis Antetokounmpo is far and away the best player on either roster. It’s not even close. Antetokounmpo’s skill set is incredible, but the Celtics have game-planned for him. They pack the paint when he attacks, knowing the Bucks are in the bottom-third of three-point shooting percentages on the year.

Starting Brogdon helps address that need right away. He’s a 40 percent three-point shooter, a tough defender and a playmaker who doesn’t need the ball in his hands to be of help to his teammates. He’s the reigning NBA Rookie of the Year (save your Joel Embiid rant for another discussion). He can play ball, and he plays to Antetokounmpo’s strengths.

Much like James Harden in Houston, the Bucks would be best served surrounding their superstar with shooters who can space the floor. That way when he drives, Boston has to pick its po ison: Help on The Greek Freak or give up three points.

Brogdon scored 10 points on 5-of-7 shooting on Tuesday and 16 points on 6-of-13 shooting in Game 1. It might not be the sexy move, and Bledsoe might not be happy about it, but Prunty should do it anyway.

Playing with the second unit would give Bledsoe more opportunities to be the main creator on offense. He has a similar usage rate in Milwaukee as he did during his best years in Phoenix, but his attempts seem forced at times. Playing with the reserves gives Bledsoe free reign to run amok against Boston’s second unit. That might be best for him, especially when additional floor spacing is the one thing the Bucks actually have that can elevate Antetokounmpo’s game to a different stratosphere.

Prunty also hasn’t played Brandon Jennings in either of Milwaukee’s first two playoff games. They signed him to a playoff contract for a reason. If Bledsoe isn’t giving much, there is no harm in seeing if Jenni ngs can help.

There aren’t any substantial advanced statistics to prove that a lineup with Brogdon and Antetokounmpo is any better than a lineup with Bledsoe and Antetokounmpo. In fact, regular-season stats suggest the opposite â€" lineups with Bledsoe and Antetokounmpo outperformed lineups with Brogdon and Antetekounmpo. But this is the playoffs, where shooting and attitude matter more than in a long season against many opponents. The eye test says if Bledsoe doesn’t step it up, a change has to be made

The Bucks needed Bledsoe to pull through for Game 2. He didn’t. Now, they may have to make that decision. If they don’t, well, what you resist persists.

Next Up In NBA

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  • DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry have a hilariously special friendship
  • Jrue Holiday destroyed the Blazers ... again
  • Rockets vs. Timberwolves odds 2018: Houston a double-digit betting favorite for Game 2
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Posted by On April 18, 2018

Meghan Markle steps out in a marvelous white dress a month before her wedding

Meghan Markle steps out in a marvelous white dress a month before her wedding

My stars, look at Meghan Markle's mixed stripes.

With Prince Harry, the soon-to-be princess ventured to the Commonwealth Youth Forum on the day three of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting Wednesday, looking sharp in a belted pinstripe dress from Altuzarra. The gown featuring pockets and a square neckline from the American designer hasn't sold out yet... but it may not be in stock for long.

The actress, who has wrapped up her time on Suits, draped a Camilla and Marc blazer over her shoulders for the event. She accessorized with Tamara Mellon pumps and a crossbody bag adorned with big stripes in contrast with her frock. The black and cream bag from Oroton is the most affordable item and can be added to your collection for $221.

More: When di d Prince Harry and Meghan Markle first hold hands in public? A timeline of their royal romance

More: 5 fascinating things we learn about Meghan Markle (and Prince Harry) in new bio

Inside the forum, Markle ditched her blazer, and she and her fiancé met with young delegates.

In just about a month, the two will exchange vows, and we are counting down the days until she unveils her (likely breathtaking) bridal look.

More: Here's what Prince Harry, Meghan Markle want you to get them for their wedding

More: Here's who WON'T be at royal wedding: Theresa May, the Trumps, the Obamas

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's fairy-tale romance Fullscreen


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All wedding planning and no fun could make for dull royals, but thankfully Prince Harry and Meghan Markle can turn to the Invictus Games. On April 6, the couple stepped out in Bath, England to attend the UK Team Trials for the competition to be held in Sydney in October. The international sport event gives wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women -- both veteran and active -- the opportunity to compete. Fullscreen Keeping close to his fiancée, Harry pointed something out to her at the trials. Fullscreen Markle mirrored her love's casual look, sporting an Invictus Games polo, 3/4-length olive coat and bootcut jeans. Fullscreen Her ensemble was perfect for greeting Invictus Games hopefuls. Fullscreen Harry actively cheered on one runner, a fellow member of the red head club. Fullscreen With less than two months to go before saying, 'I do,' Prince Harry and Meghan Markle embarked on their first official joint visit to Northern Ireland on March 23, 2018. Fullscreen The pair visited the Eikon Exhibition Centre and attend Amazing the Space, a youth-led peace-building initiative. Fullscreen Upon arrival, Markle was presented with a sunny floral arrangement. Fullscreen Once inside the Eikon Exhibition Centre, Markle shed her Mackage coat, revealing her stylish ensemble, a chic pairing of a Victoria Beckham knit sweater with a Greta Constantine skirt, Jimmy Choo pumps and a handbag by Charlotte Elizabeth. Fullscreen An important step in Meg han Markle's royal education: Her first joint official appearance with Queen Elizabeth II and the royal family. Prince Harry and his American fiancee attended the Commonwealth Day Service at Westminster Abbey on March 12, 2018. Fullscreen Meghan Markle wore a creamy white coat by Amanda Wakeley and a matching beret-style hat over a dark dress for the Commonwealth Day service at Westminster Abbey on March 12, 2018. Fullscreen Prince Harry and Meghan Markle accompanied Prince William and Duchess Kate of Cambridge to the Commonwealth Day Service at Westminster Abbey on March 12, 2018. Fullscreen Meghan Markle's coat featured an upturned collar and fastened at the waist. She wore a dark blue dress and navy suede heels. Fulls creen After the service, the young royals, including Meghan Markle, met with school children in the abbey dean's yard. Meghan crouched to receive a posy of flowers from a young girl. Fullscreen Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are greeted by children excitedly waving the British flag as they arrive in Birmingham, England for International Women's Day on March 8, 2018. Fullscreen Markle took the time to meet the local students. Fullscreen During their visit, Markle and her prince visited Millennium Point, a destination providing workspace to organizations focused on STEM and education. Fullscreen Meghan Markle made her first joint appearance with Harry, Prince William and Duchess Kate at the first Royal Foundation Forum on Feb.28, 2018 in London. Markle's name will be added to the foundation's title when she weds and launches her new life as royal philanthropist. Fullscreen Meghan Markle was all smiles at the first annual Royal Foundation Forum in London on Feb. 28, 2018, joining Duchess Kate and Princes William and Harry onstage for the occasion. Fullscreen Markle chose a navy Jason Wu dress to mark the occasion. Fullscreen The fourth stop on the "Meet Meghan Markle" tour of the United Kingdom found Prince Harry and his bride-to-be in picturesque Edinburgh in Scotland, where their first event of the day was a walkabout outside Edinburgh Castle, on Feb. 13, 2018. Fullscreen Holding hands, the couple were greeted by large and enthusiastic crowds in Edinburgh. Markle's fashion gesture on her first official visit to Scotland included wearing a Burberry tartan coat and carrying a crossbody bag by Scottish brand Strathberry, Feb. 13, 2018. Fullscreen As Prince Harry introduces Meghan Markle to the United Kingdom, with their latest stop in Edinburgh, Scotland, the couple have continued to disregard stuffy royal custom with plenty of public displays of affection and touching. Fullscreen The crowd of fans waited hours in chilly weather to greet Prince Harry and his fiancée Meghan Markle on a walkabout at Edinburgh Castle in Scotland on Feb. 13, 2018. Fullscreen Prince Harry and his fiancée Meghan Markle are introduced to Cruachan IV, the Shetland pony Regimental mascot for the Black Watch; the obstreperous pony tried to nip at the royal fingers as Harry and Meghan laughed. Fullscreen Note that Meghan Markle's coat is similar to that of the pony mascot of the Royal Regiment of Scotland. Fullscreen After their visit to Edinburgh Castle, the couple moved on to Social Bite, a cafe that helps feed the homeless and a favorite charity for Prince Harry. Fullscreen In another impressive royal backdrop, Harry and Meghan went to the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the seat of Scottish royalty, including Harry's distant Scottish ancestors, Mary Queen of Scots, and her son, King James 1 of England. The couple walked the corridors of the palace on their way to a reception for young people. Scotland's Year of Young People 2018 aims to inspire Scotland through celebrating youth achievements and strengthening their voice on social issues. Fullscreen Prince Harry and his fiancée Meghan Markle at a reception for young people in the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, during their visit to Scotland on Feb. 13, 2018. Her all-black outfit under included sailor-style Veronica Beard palazzo pants and high heels. Fullscreen Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrived under an umbrella for the Endeavour Fund Awards in London on Feb. 1, 2018. Fullscreen The couple looked sharp while attending the annual charity event, both wearing suits. She wore an Alexander McQueen tuxedo-style pantsuit with ankle-length pants over black heels. Fullscreen They also greeted guests during a pre-ceremony reception. This was Markle's first official evening appearance with Prince Harry as part of her royal-to-be training. Fullscreen Prince Harry and his fiancée Meghan Markle visited Wales on Jan. 18, 2018, in the latest stop on the "Meet Meghan" tour of Britain before their May 19 wedding. Fullscreen Meghan Markle enchanted a crowd during a walkabout at Cardiff Castle during her visit with Prince Harry to Cardiff, Wales, Jan. 18, 2018. Fullscreen For her visit to Cardiff Castle in Wales, royal bride-to-be Meghan Markle wore a black Stella McCartney coat cinched with a wide ribbon-style belt, plus black boots. She carried a mini-s addlebag purse by the British brand Demellier. Fullscreen With iconic Cardiff Castle as a backdrop, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle plunged into a walkabout, shaking hands with children, many waving Welsh flags and even some American flags, during thier visit to Cardiff, Wales, on Jan. 18, 2018. Fullscreen Two primary school kids, Harry Smith and Megan Taylor, presented a wedding gift to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, a Celtic love spoon in a red box, during the engaged couple's visit to Cardiff, Wales on Jan. 18, 2018. Fullscreen Meghan Markle inside the Drawing Room during a visit to Cardiff Castle in Wales, Jan. 18, 2018. Fullscreen Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend a street dance cla ss during their visit to Star Hub on Jan.18, 2018 in Cardiff, Wales. Under her Stella McCartney coat, Markle wore a wide-shouldered jacket in wool herringbone by Theory, with black jeans. Fullscreen Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit Reprezent 107.3FM on Jan. 9, 2018 in London. The Reprezent training program "was established in 2008 in response to an alarming rise in knife crime, to help young people develop and socialize through radio," Kensington Palace tweeted the day of the event. Fullscreen Markle, bundled-up in a scarf and 3/4-length coat, beamed beside her fiancé, Prince Harry. Fullscreen The couple, who isn't afraid to pack on the PDA, held hands during their engagement. Fullscreen Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle arrive to attend the traditional Christmas Day service, at St. Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, England, Dec. 25, 2017. Fullscreen Prince William, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend the Christmas Day Church service at Church of St Mary Magdalene on Dec. 25, 2017. Fullscreen Meghan Markle was wearing a Sentaler wide collar camel coat cinched at the waist, topped with a caramel brown round hat featuring a twisty detail, plus matching gloves, suede boots and small round purse. Fullscreen (L-R) Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Britain's Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry follow Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip after attending the Royal Family 's traditional Christmas Day church service. Fullscreen Duchess Kate and Meghan Markle arrive to attend the Royal Family's traditional Christmas Day church service. Fullscreen Meghan Markle attends the royal family's Christmas Day Church service. Fullscreen Meghan Markle joined Prince Harry for her first pre-Christmas lunch at Buckingham Palace on Dec. 20, 2017. Fullscreen With Harry behind the wheel, Markle sat on the passenger side giving photographers a hint of the tea-length Self-Portrait dress she wore for the occasion. Fullscreen The pair ventured on their first official engagement in Nottingham, England on Dec. 1, 2017. Fullscreen Harry waved to the crowd outside of the Nottingham's National Justice Museum. Fullscreen Markle also waved to the public, while showcasing her bright and warm smile. Fullscreen Harry and Markle also waved together, natch. Fullscreen Markle, with Harry, also gave those that gathered a nice view of her engagement ring which features two diamonds from Princess Diana's personal collection. Fullscreen Markle shook numerous hands while greeting the crowd. Fullscreen Including the small hand of this young child. Fullscreen Markle also accepted lots of bouquets during the walkabout. Fullscreen Wouldn't those flowers look nice on the table with a roasted chicken (the meal Markle and Harry were prepping when he popped the question)? Fullscreen While at Nottingham Contemporary, Harry and Markle scoped out the Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair. Fullscreen They also, as one might expect, shook more hands. Fullscreen On Nov. 27, 2017, Harry and Markle posed for photos the day their engagement was announced in the Sunken Gardens at Kensington Palace, where Harry resides. Fullscreen The lovebirds were all smiles for photogs. Fullscreen Harry and Markle have the gazing-lovingly-at-each-other-thing down. Fullscreen The center stone for Markle's engagement ring, which Harry designed, comes from Botswana. Fullscreen On Sept. 25, 2017, Markle and Harry were snapped in Toronto at the Invictus Games, an athletic competition Harry founded for wounded warriors. Fullscreen This appearance marked the first time the couple was photographed at a public event. Fullscreen The two appeared very much in love. Fullscreen They arrived for the wheelchair tennis competition holding hands. FullscreenReplay
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Posted by On April 18, 2018

Gentry: Holiday among the best two-way players

9:43 AM ET

  • Mark SchwarzESPN Reporter Close

When New Orleans Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry thinks about the best two-way players in the NBA, he thinks about a guy on his own roster. He thinks about a player who has been a force at both ends in the Pelicans' two playoff victories at Portland.

He thinks about Jrue Holiday.

"I may be a bit biased," Gentry conceded, "but if you can tell me a better two-way player in the league right now, I'm willing to listen. But what we ask him to do and the things we ask him to do offensively, he was just great tonight."

Holiday's 33 points Tuesday were a game high. He scored a career-best 20 of those in the restricted area. Holiday drained 14 of his 24 shots and dished out nine assists, leading th e Pelicans to a 111-102 victory that gave the team a commanding 2-0 lead as their first-round playoff series shifts to New Orleans for Game 3 on Thursday.

"He's playing extremely well," Blazers guard CJ McCollum said. "We've got to limit some of his opportunities going forward."

"Coming off that pick-and-roll, he's able to get those floaters and get to the rim," said Portland All-Star Damian Lillard, who finished with 17 points on the night. "He's impacting the game on both ends of the floor."

Holiday has arguably done his most effective work at the defensive end against Portland's best player. He held Lillard to 0-for-4 shooting, zero points and two turnovers as a primary defender in Game 2. Lillard is now 0-for-8, and the Blazers are 6-for-24 (25 percent) against Holiday in the series.

"In my opinion, I think he's one of the best defenders out there on the perimeter," said Lilla rd, who typically has his way with most NBA defenses but has yet to find his shot in this series. "He's just playing well. He's big and crafty. He's impacting the game on both ends of the floor."

McCollum said he is not surprised by the way Holiday has harassed Portland's potent pair.

"He's a very good player," McCollum said. "I said it coming into this series: He doesn't get a lot of credit because he's playing with [Pelicans big man Anthony Davis], and I think you're starting to see how good he truly is on both ends of the floor."

Even his Pelicans teammates have had to cope with Holiday's suffocating defense.

"He's a helluva player -- especially both ways," said Holiday's backcourt mate, Rajon Rondo. "I get better as a player offensively when he checks me in practice."

The Blazers have pick-and-rolled their way to 49 victories and home-court advan tage in the opening round of these playoffs. But they have matched up poorly with a player who has been able to neutralize their most potent weapon. Holiday successfully defended 1,846 pick-and-rolls in the regular season, making him the second-most effective guard who faced a minimum of 1,000, according to Second Spectrum.

"Jrue Holiday has good length," Blazers coach Terry Stotts said. "He has good strength. He's a smart defender, size, he's experienced, and he's always been a good defender, no matter who he's guarding."

Rondo shook his head when asked why Holiday gets so little credit for his two-way play.

"I think it goes along with his personality," Rondo said. "He's not a guy that talks, even though he's shown more emotions in this playoffs as of late, but he flies under the radar. He's playing in a small market the last couple of years."

Those who know him best say Holiday has s hown more personality in this series than anyone can remember. He erupted with joy after a game-saving block against Pat Connaughton in the closing seconds of Game 1. He has conducted a running dialogue with Portland fans seated near courtside.

"I was just having friendly conversation with some of the fans," Holiday said, downplaying the banter. "That was really it, just going back and forth. I feel like that's what they paid for -- for us to communicate and talk to them -- so that's what I was doing."

"It's been fun getting to know Jrue this year," Rondo said. "He's a great person, even better person off the court than he is on the court."

Teammates say Holiday is in a good place right now. They know that life was cruel when his wife, Lauren, was diagnosed with a benign brain tumor while she was five months pregnant in June 2016.

Now he has a healthy wife and a healthy daughter named Jrue Tyler Holi day. Everyone calls her J.T.

"It's been great," Davis said of his teammate. "All he wants to do is play basketball, and now that everything that was going on with him is squared away and doing fine, he's just focused on playing, and he's playing at a high level."

With his family in a good spot, Holiday has been able to focus on his performance on the court.

"My family's the most important thing to me, and with them being OK, I can come back to the team freely and be able to help them out now,'' he said. "It's been fun. I feel like my teammates and the organization definitely helped me out coming back from things with my family and even the injuries, with being able to play and being able to perform at the peak I'm performing.''

Source: Google News US Sports | Netizen 24 United States