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m." Cabrera has worn out Kluber during h

  • 25 Jul
    MINNEAPOLIS - All these years, Kobe Bryant has been chasing Michael Jordan. [b]Blaise Matuidi France Jersey[/b] .The bar doesnt get any higher than that. And after Bryant passed Jordan for third on the NBAs career scoring list in the Los Angeles Lakers 100-94 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday night, he offered a glimpse into the relentless mentality it takes to run down a legend.I think the competitive nature is something that frightens a lot of people when you peel back truly whats inside of a person to compete and be at that high level, Bryant said. It scares a lot of people that are just comfortable being average.Bryant has been compared to Jordan for a long time, in part because he dared to chase him. Where Bryant is every bit Jordans equal is in the tenacity that has kept him going through a torn Achilles tendon, bone-on-bone friction in his knees and now the painful rebuilding of a proud franchise.His competitiveness drives him in the off-season to work to be able to play at the level he plays, Timberwolves coach Flip Saunders said. His competitiveness during the games to dominate offensively and defensively and then his competitiveness of wanting to win. Hell challenge teammates if need be and will do whatever it takes to try to get that edge.Its the only way Bryant knows. And he learned by studying the best.I think when you look at Michaels (Hall of Fame) speech, Bryant said, referring to a speech in which Jordan cited those who he perceived to have gotten in his way over the years. People really got a chance to see how he ticks and it scared a lot of people, right? But thats just the reality of it. You cant get to a supreme level without channeling the dark side a little bit.Bryants willingness to embrace the darkness has, in his own eyes, cast him as one of the leagues villains. It also likely ensures that his farewell tour, whenever that comes, will not be of the warm and fuzzy variety that New York Yankees star Derek Jeter enjoyed last season.Derek and I are different people, Bryant said. He hides it a lot better but I guarantee you our competitive spirit is exactly the same. He just hides it better or chooses to hide it. I dont choose to hide it.Then again, maybe he overestimates the animosity out there. Maybe thats another mind trick that he plays on himself to get him out of bed in the morning and to the gym for another workout.When No. 24 stepped to the free-throw line midway through the second quarter on Sunday night — with 5:24 remaining and 24 seconds on the shot clock, to be exact — needing both shots to move past Jordan, a Lakers-heavy crowd at Target Center stood and serenaded him. Cell phone flashes flickered as the first and second shots swished through and the Timberwolves stopped the game, with owner Glen Taylor presenting Bryant the game ball to a thunderous ovation.Im used to being the villain, man, Bryant said with a sheepish smile. To have moments like that, when youre not expecting a hug and you get a hug, this feels pretty damn good.Once it was finally over, the weight lifted and Bryant found another gear against a young Timberwolves team that includes 19-year-olds Andrew Wiggins — the No. 1 overall pick in the June draft — and Zach LaVine, who wears No. 8 in honour of Bryant.He finished the night with 26 points, including a dagger of a 3-pointer over Wiggins outstretched hand with just over a minute to play that helped seal the win.I witnessed greatness tonight, a star-struck Wiggins said. A living legend passed Michael Jordan, who everyone thinks is the best player of all-time. Thats a big accomplishment. Im glad I was there to witness it.Wiggins was 1 when a wide-eyed Bryant entered the league in 1996, and that wasnt lost on him in the afterglow on Sunday night.It was a strange feeling, Bryant said. I remember being Andrew Wiggins. I remember playing against Michael my first year. To be here tonight and playing against him and seeing the baby face and the little footwork and little technique things that hes going to be much, much sharper at as time goes on. It was like looking at a reflection of myself 19 years ago. It was pretty cool.Now that Bryant has bumped Jordan from the scoring podium, only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387) and Karl Malone (36,928) are in front of him.Even if he remains in third place, which appears likely, it wont really matter. Vaulting over Jordan, whose Jumpman logo is as synonymous with the NBA as Jerry Wests silhouette, is its own reward.Maybe thats why the insatiable Bryant wore the unfamiliar smile of satisfaction on Sunday night. Hes been trying for almost two decades. And now he can finally say hes beaten Jordan at something.It has a certain finality to it, he said. When moments like this come around, youre really overjoyed by it. At the same time, you know the end is pretty near, which is fine, too. [b]Hugo Lloris France Jersey[/b] . After seven wins in a row, they have to do it one more time to get into the playoffs. [b]Nabil Fekir Jersey[/b] . - Maynor Figueroa headed in a late goal to give Honduras a 1-1 draw with the United States in an international friendly Tuesday. CLEVELAND -- David Price would like to forget everything about Aug. 27, maybe the ugliest game of his career. He erased some it from his memory. Price bounced back from an alarming start and Miguel Cabrera homered twice, hitting one of Detroits three homers off Clevelands Corey Kluber, as the Tigers rolled to a 12-1 win on Monday to slow the Indians climb in the standings. Price (13-10) gave up one run and eight hits in seven innings, more of a typical performance by the left-hander than what happened last week when he allowed nine consecutive hits to New York in one inning and eight runs over two. Price called it "probably the worst game Ive ever had in my life." But he was more like himself against the sleepy Indians, who had won six of seven to get within 3 1/2 games of first in the AL Central. "It felt a lot better than five days ago," Price said. "That left a bad taste in my mouth." Cabrera hit a two-run homer in the first inning off Kluber (13-9) and Victor Martinez and J.D. Martinez connected for consecutive shots in the third off Clevelands ace. Cabrera, who has been slowed by a sore right ankle, homered again in the eighth off rookie Bryan Price. "Hes not running real good, but Im not sure it matters when youre jogging," Indians manager Terry Francona said of Cabrera. "His bats not broken." Rookie Tyler Collins hit his first major league homer, a three-run shot in the ninth, as the Tigers pounded out a season-high 20 hits. The Indians didnt arrive home until 3:15 a.m. after their Sunday night game in Kansas City was suspended in the 10th inning because of storms. Price never let them wake up, improving to 2-2 since joining the Tigers, who acquired him on July 31 and plugged him into their stable of strong starters. Price stuck to his schedule since the debacle against the Yankees. "I try to stay on an even keel," he said. "Im huge on routines. I didnt do anything and it paid off for me." Cabrera gave the Tigers a 2-0 with his 18th homer -- and first since Aug. 2. Ian Kinsller led off with a soft liner down the right-field line that outfielder Mike Aviles missed with a poorly timed dive, playing what should have been a single into a triple. [b]Djibril Sidibe Jersey[/b]. . One out later, Cabrera drilled his homer over the left-field wall. "It was good to see Miggy do that," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "Its been a while. Who knows, maybe this is a flash point for him." Cabrera has worn out Kluber during his career, batting .567 with four homers and nine RBIs. Kluber induced inning-ending double plays to end the first and second, but wasnt so fortunate in the third when Aviles couldnt help him again. Cabrera hit a sinking liner with two outs that Aviles didnt see initially and had bounce off his glove. Victor Martinez followed by a hitting on 0-2 pitch over the wall in right-centre for his 28th homer. J.D. Martinez then hit his 18th to make it 5-1. Kluber was pulled one batter later, going just 2 2-3 innings, his shortest outing this season. Hes lost three straight starts after going 6-0 over eight starts. "Theyre good hitters and you make mistakes to them they usually take advantage of it," Kluber said. BIGGY MIGGY: Cabrera has 29 career multihomer games, and his 384th homer ties him with Harold Baines on the career list. Cabrera has 20 homers at Progressive Field, the most by any opposing player in the ballparks 20-year history. MOTOWN MILESTONE: Tigers rookie Steve Moya got a hit in his first major league at-bat, singling in the ninth. Moya hit 35 home runs at Erie and was named Eastern League MVP this season. TRAINERS ROOM Tigers: RHP Anibal Sanchez, who hasnt pitched since Aug. 8 because of a strained chest muscle, has made progress but isnt ready to come back. He had a setback while throwing on Aug. 26 and the Tigers are being extra cautious. UP NEXT Injuries forced the Tigers to use nine starters in August and Tuesday left-hander Kyle Lobstein will make his second career start against Clevelands Carlos Carrasco, who has yet to lose in four starts since rejoining Clevelands rotation. ' ' '