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Markelle Fultz Returned To Action With A Standing Ovation

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Markelle Fultz was the overall number 1 draft pick in 2017 for the Philadelphia 76ers. The rookie found himself following the same trend of being injured his rookie year like Philly’s other No.1 picks Joell Embiid and Ben Simmons.

Fultz had sat out for over 68 games this season. Many expected Philly to keep him off the floor until next season. Instead on Monday night, Fultz returned to the lineup.

Fans roared in anticipation each time he collected the ball on the ensuing possessions in the period.

“There was a little bit of excitement,” Fultz said about entering the game for the first time. “And a little bit of ‘I have to help the team. I don’t want to let the team down.’ Once I stepped out there on the floor, it felt great to be back out there with my brothers.”

Philly Star Joel Embiid spoke about the return.

“He gives us another great pace,” Embiid said. “He can find ways to score and also set guys up. You could tell by his eight assists tonight in 14 minutes. That’s big time. That’s what we need him to do — score the ball, get guys involved, and create.”

Fultz ended the night with 10 points. He looked somewhat rusty but it takes time to bounce back. The real question is will he mature into the scorer that can stretch the floor for Philly. For now, just enjoy the return to the court.

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Carmelo Anthony Will Sign With The Houston Rockets

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Carmelo Anthony will be an official free agent once he is waived by the Atlanta Hawks.

On Thursday, the¬†Oklahoma City Thunder¬†agreed to trade Anthony and a lottery-protected 2022 first-round pick to the¬†Atlanta Hawks¬†as part of a three-team deal that netted them point guard Dennis Schroder, per ESPN.com’s¬†Adrian Wojnarowski. The Hawks intend to pay Anthony his entire $27.9 million salary for next season as part of the buyout.

According to Turner Sports’¬†David Aldridge, Anthony “has been telling people for more than a week that he‚Äôll ultimately wind up with the Rockets.”

Anthony will join Chris Paul and James Harden with the Houston Rockets. The Miami Heat and Los Angles Lakers were among the teams that were also interested in Melo.

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NFL Halts Policy To Penalize Players For Kneeling During The Anthem

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The NFL and NFLPA have come to an agreement to not to enforce the rule change to penalize players for taking a knee.

In May, the NFL unilaterally instituted a new policy surrounding the national anthem that would punish players and teams for kneeling as away to protest police brutality against people of color.  Which was a complete change in direction from their stance in October 2017.

The league and the NFL Players Association issued a joint statement Thursday that said “no new rules relating to the anthem will be issued or enforced for the next several weeks” while both sides continue to hold discussions to figure out how to move forward.

“The NFL and NFLPA, through recent discussions, have been working on a resolution to the anthem issue,” the joint statement said. “In order to allow this constructive dialogue to continue, we have come to a standstill agreement on the NFLPA’s grievance and on the NFL’s anthem policy.

“The NFL and NFLPA reflect the great values of America, which are repeatedly demonstrated by the many players doing extraordinary work in communities across our country to promote equality, fairness and justice. Our shared focus will remain on finding a solution to the anthem issue through mutual, good faith commitments, outside of litigation.”

Players around the league were not happy with the leagues’ policy change. At least this move allows more discussions and won’t allow teams to suspend players.

 

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Kawhi Leonard Traded To The Raptors

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The Kawhi Leonard era in San Antonio is officially over.

The San Antonio Spurs and Toronto Raptors agreed to a deal in principle that would involve a swap of All-Stars Kawhi Leonard and¬†DeMar DeRozan, according to ESPN’s¬†Adrian Wojnarowski¬†on Wednesday.

Wojnarowski¬†reported Leonard and Danny Green will head to Toronto in exchange for DeRozan, Jakob Poeltl and a protected 2019 first-round draft pick.¬†Toronto’s first-round pick to San Antonio is a protected 1-20 selection. After one year, it becomes two second-round picks.

Per Wojnarowski, the first-round pick is protected for the 20th overall selection and above, and after a year, it will turn into two second-round draft choices.

Toronto would be able to offer Leonard a five-year, $190 million contract next summer. If Leonard left the Raptors, he could sign a four-year, $141 million deal with a team with the available salary-cap space.

Kawhi has already made his intentions known to head back to Cali when he hits free agency. So this move is likely only stop gap.

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