Taichung Suns head coach Chris Gavina on Sunday said that his team respects everybody, but does not fear anybody in the lead-up to their next T1 League game at the weekend against the Taoyuan Leopards, which is to feature recently recruited former NBA star Dwight Howard.
“We respect everybody, but we don’t fear anybody. So we will go into that game with every intention of winning,” the Filipino said while speaking at a post-game news conference at the University of Taipei’s Tianmu campus.
Howard arrived in Taiwan on Thursday last week to much fanfare after the Leopards announced his signing earlier last week.
The 2.08m-tall Howard was the first overall pick in the 2004 NBA draft, and was an eight-time All-Star and three-time Defensive Player of the Year during his 18 seasons in the NBA, which included winning a championship with the Los Angeles Lakers in the 2019-2020 season.
“Whether it’s Dwight Howard or whoever is in front of us, we just got to have the same mindset that we got to outwork them, but today we got outworked,” Gavina said after his team’s 109-94 loss on the road to the Taiwan Beer HeroBears.
The HeroBears, who bounced back from a loss against defending champions the Kaohsiung Aquas on Saturday, were trailing the Suns 27-22 at the end of the first quarter, but managed to surge ahead and take a 57-54 lead at halftime.
The scores remained tight at the start of the second half with neither team able to lead by more than four points before ending the third quarter at 80-80.
The HeroBears then rallied to dominate the first two-and-a-half minutes of the fourth quarter with 11 consecutive points to lead 91-80. From there, the Suns were unable to catch up and trailed for the rest of the game.
With the score at 109-94, HeroBears head coach Yang Chih-hao contested a referee’s call on an out-of-bounds ball with less than 14 seconds left in the game.
The referee had originally ruled that the ball had been knocked out of bounds by HeroBears center Matt Hodgson, but later changed his decision after a replay review to rule that Suns center Aaron Geramipoor had been the last to touch the ball.
When asked about his thoughts on the incident, Gavina said Yang had the right to challenge the call, but he personally would not have done so.
“I would’ve been a lot more respectful and considered that I already have the lead and just let the game progress as it may, but as I said it’s his right. So, you know, you mark it up, you remember that occurrence [for] next time we play them,” Gavina said.
Gavina, the first head coach from the Philippines in the T1 League, stepped down as assistant coach of the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters in the Philippine Basketball Association to join the Suns this season.
With the defeat, the Suns are now fourth in the six-team standings with a 1-2 record, while the HeroBears are third at 1-1.
Also on Sunday, the Tainan TSG GhostHawks outhustled the Taoyuan Leopards 114-100 at home at Chia Nan University of Pharmacy and Science’s Shao Tsung Gymnasium.
Leopards small forward Troy Williams led all scorers with 36 points and 11 rebounds, while shooting 12 of 37 from the floor, including four of 19 from beyond the arc and eight of 18 from the stripe.
The sight of Japanese fans at a World Cup bagging trash after a match — win or lose — always surprises non-Japanese. Japanese players are famous for doing the same in their team dressing room: hanging up towels, cleaning the floor and even leaving a thank-you note. The behavior is driving social media posts at the World Cup in Qatar, but it is nothing unusual for Japanese fans or players. They are simply doing what most people in Japan do — at home, at school, at work or on streets from Tokyo to Osaka, Shizuoka to Sapporo. “For Japanese people, this is
Portugal players idolize Cristiano Ronaldo, with many saying it is a “dream” to play with him, but young forward Goncalo Ramos on Saturday joked that he would not accept a piece of chewing gum from his compatriot. Ronaldo, who scored a penalty in Portugal’s 3-2 win over Ghana on Thursday, was pictured chewing gum he had pulled out of the front of his shorts during the game. The 37-year-old striker, without a club after an acrimonious split from Manchester United this week, became the first player ever to score at five World Cups. “Of course not,” laughed Ramos at a news conference, when
Normally, it would be horrible news to soccer fans anywhere that their team’s star player was injured. Yet even as they endured an anguished wait for a Neymar-less Brazil to score in their 1-0 win over Switzerland on Monday, some Brazilians found it hard to miss the injured superstar, who has promised to dedicate his first FIFA World Cup goal to far-right Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. Watching the match in a packed bar in central Rio de Janeiro, where fans decked out in yellow and green waited nervously for what turned out to be the lone goal — scored in the 83rd
Qatar’s top World Cup official on Tuesday said that more than 400 migrant workers died in labor accidents in the country in the years leading up to the tournament. Hassan al-Thawadi, secretary general of Qatari Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, gave the figure of 400 to 500 in a British television interview when asked how many workers had died “doing work for the World Cup.” The organizing committee said his response referred to “national statistics covering the period of 2014-2020 for all work-related fatalities” in Qatar “covering all sectors and nationalities.” It said there were 414 worker deaths over the eight-year period. Migrant