Getting married before having children ‘boosts chances of staying together’ – study

first_imgThe Telegraph 9 March 2015Couples who get married before having children are more than 70 per cent more likely to stay together than those who do so after, new research claims.Meanwhile those who start a family but never marry are almost three times as likely to split up before their children are in their mid-teens, the study by the Marriage Foundation think-tank concludes.It claims that other factors often linked to family stability, such as parents’ ages when they have children or their level of education, have only a “marginal”, if any, effect on their chances of staying together.Sir Paul Coleridge, the former High Court family judge who set up the foundation in 2012, said the study showed that it is a “myth” that cohabitation is as stable as marriage.The group is pressing for political parties to adopt policies specifically promoting marriage in their manifestos ahead of the General Election in May.The study is based on analysis by Professor Stephen McKay of Lincoln University of data from Understanding Society, the research project tracking changes in tens of thousands of British households over time.It analyses a sample of 1,800 mothers with at least one child aged 14 or 15 who were interviewed in 2010 in detail about how their family was formed. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/11457510/Getting-married-before-having-children-boosts-chances-of-staying-together-study.htmllast_img read more

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Campbell urges Arsenal to sign Willian, Fraser

first_imgFormer Arsenal striker, Kevin Campbell, thinks it is time for the team to secure some bargains in the transfer market. Promoted Content5 Of The World’s Most Unique Theme ParksThe Highest Paid Football Players In The World6 Interesting Ways To Make Money With A Drone8 Fascinating Facts About Coffee10 Risky Jobs Some Women DoTV Characters Who Hated Each Other But Later Became FriendsCouples Who Celebrated Their Union In A Unique, Unforgettable WayA Soviet Shot Put Thrower’s Record Hasn’t Been Beaten To This DayWho’s The Best Car Manufacturer Of All Time?Who Is The Most Powerful Woman On Earth?7 Ways To Understand Your Girlfriend BetterThe Very Last Bitcoin Will Be Mined Around 2140. Read More Campbell added: “There’s talk of Willian, I like Willian, there’s still a lot of life left in him. He actually suits what Mikel Arteta wants to do, playing in a three, he’s got pace, he can beat people, he can score goals and we could get him on a free, and he’s experienced. “It ticks all the boxes, but I know some Arsenal fans saying, ‘We don’t want Chelsea’s cast-offs’, but he’s not a cast-off. “The problem with Chelsea is they’ve got young players coming through who need to play, who know now is the time where [Frank] Lampard’s come in with Jody Morris, it’s the transition where they have to play them now. “Whereas Willian is 31, still got life in him, he’s a similar age to [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang, no one is saying Aubameyang is over the hill, so how can Willian be over the hill? It doesn’t make sense. read also:Rivaldo: Chelsea winger Willian could succeed at Barcelona “If we haven’t got the money to spend in the transfer market, let’s get these guys on free, get them motivated and get them playing. That’s what Mikel Arteta’s got to do, and he realises if he hasn’t got the war chest then he’s going to have to move smart.” FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 While Gunners fans know they will have to spend big to reach the top of the Premier League, Campbell hopes some astute free transfers could help. The likes of Willian from Chelsea and Ryan Fraser from Bournemouth are out of contract this summer. Campbell told Metro: “You can get Ryan Fraser on a free transfer, his assists for Bournemouth were double figures last year, I know he suffered injuries but he’s still been having a decent season. “That’s playing for Bournemouth, when you’re playing for Arsenal he’s going to get more of the ball in the positions he wants and give more opportunities, because there’s a lot more threats for Arsenal than some of these other teams.”Advertisement Loading… last_img read more

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Ronaldo dominates Serie A top earners

first_imgRelatedPosts Live stream Premier League, La Liga, Serie A on Showmax Pro this weekend Juve’s Pirlo gamble makes new Serie A season the most open for years Pirlo bags UEFA coaching badge Cristiano Ronaldo is earning £28 million-a-year in wages at Juventus after taxes, three times what Matthijs de Ligt gets as the second highest earner in Serie A, according to Gazzetta dello Sport. Juventus’ new summer signing de Ligt takes home £7.2million-a-year plus bonuses, jumping up above the likes of Paulo Dybala and Gonzalo Higuain to take up his spot behind Ronaldo. Third spot in the list is taken up by another Serie A newcomer, Romelu Lukaku, who is getting £6.7million-a-year plus bonuses after joining Inter Milan from Manchester United this summer. Of course, Ronaldo earns far more than his wages due to his global status. Nike alone pays him £14.68m-a-year, and he will also receive performance-based bonuses. Juventus understandably take up the bulk of the list of top earners, with nine of their players appearing in the top 10. Only Lukaku and Inter break that mould. Juventus have won eight Serie A titles in a row, so can afford to spend big money on the players they need to keep their run going. They reportedly spend £264million-a-year on player wages. Aaron Ramsey is another name they have brought in this year, with the Welshman on £6.3million-a-year since joining on a free transfer after his contract with Arsenal ended. Adrien Rabiot joined from PSG this summer, and he too has broken into the top 10, earning the same as Ramsey plus bonuses. With all these new arrivals, the likes of Dybala, Higuain, Miralem Pjanic, Douglas Costa, Mario Mandzukic, and Sami Khedira have all found themselves dropping down the list of best paid footballers in Italy. Not far off the top 10 is AC Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma, who earns £5.4million-a-year, and Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly earns the same.Tags: Cristiano RonaldoGazzetta dello SportJuventus FCMatthijs de LigtSerie Alast_img read more

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Students debate fracking

first_imgFollow us on Twitter @dailytrojan On Wednesday afternoon, the USC Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics in partnership with the Schwarzenegger Institute held its second Students Talk Back of the semester. The weekly forums allow students to engage in discussion about a political issue.This week, experts discussed policies on hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” the process of using high-pressure water to fracture rocks, extracting from the shale reserves underneath. The debate-like format of the discussion allowed for investigation into the issue.The event panel consisted of students Kelsey Harrison, a senior majoring in political science, and Jake Jordan, a senior majoring in international relations (global business) and professionals Dave Quast, the California Director of Energy in Depth, a pro-petroleum think tank, and Brenna Norton, the Southern California Operator from Food & Water Watch, an anti-fracking advocate. Daniel Rothberg, an editor at the Daily Trojan, and Dan Schnur, director of the USC Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics, co-moderated the debate.Before the event, Ivan Kumamoto, a sophomore majoring in business administration, shared why he attended the forum.“I expect to find out more about recent developments in the natural gas industry and if … environmental concerns [have] changed at all.”The debate was not without tension.“Hopefully, we have a legitimate level of intellectual honesty. Because a lot of the discussion on [the oil industry’s] side of the debate has, in my opinion, been false or preposterous,” Kumamoto said after learning of Quast’s affiliation with Energy in Depth.Both sides were asked to define fracking before launching into the debate.“I know what the oil and gas industry tells what fracking is. But, in the bigger picture, fracking has come to mean the whole process, the trucking in of thousand gallons of water, all the sand they have to move to extract from that well, all the waste water that comes up from the process, radioactive material that comes up from fracking,” Norton said.Quast defined fracking as “the injection of fluid at depth.”“It takes place in a heavily regulated environment in the state level. Hydraulic fracturing is not a new thing. It has been going on since the Truman administration,” he said.Norton’s main points included environmental concerns at increased oil production, lack of regulation and contamination. She was in favor of a ban on fracking all together.Harrison presented a study that she had helped to conduct. According to the study by USC and the Los Angeles Times, 41 percent of L.A. Democrats and 43 percent of Republicans were in favor of regulated fracking, and 14 percent were in favor of all forms of fracking.Quast held that a ban on fracking would disrupt economies and harm the industry. He also held that fracking, as a process, is safe.“There’s never been a single case of water contamination,” Quast said.Alec White, a sophomore majoring political science, found the event insightful.“I found most interesting that fracking will not contribute to the cost of gasoline at all. That puts me on the side against fracking,” White said.last_img read more

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No. 2 Badgers fall to Duke, lose chance at top-five win

first_imgWednesday’s game between No. 2 Wisconsin and No. 4 Duke was just the second top-five matchup in Kohl Center history and arguably the most highly anticipated matchup of the college basketball season thus far.While both teams went back-and-forth in the first half and the majority of the second half, the Blue Devils (8-0) eventually pulled away from the Badgers (7-1) — shooting 65.2 percent from the floor in the process — to hand UW its first loss of the season, 80-70.Blue Devils potent offense overwhelms BadgersIt is very rare for an opposing team to leave the Kohl Center victorious. It’s even more rare for an Read…“We beat a really good basketball team today,” Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski said. “Our defense was good and then our offensive efficiency was incredible tonight.”In the second half, Duke opened up their biggest lead of the game of nine points when senior guard Quinn Cook hit a jumper to put the Blue Devils up 58-49. But the Badgers battled back with senior guard Traevon Jackson leading the charge.Jackson scored 13 of UW’s next 16 points including two free throws that pulled the Badgers within three at 60-63. However Duke would continue to hit its shots and free throws at the end, preventing UW from getting within six points the final 3:42 of the game.“It was close but we never made them nervous at all,” Jackson, who finished with a career-high 25 points on 7-of-12 shooting said. “They always had like a comfortable six-point lead.”Other than Jackson, the only other player in double figures for the Badgers was forward Frank Kaminsky who finished with 17 points. Forwards Nigel Hayes and Sam Dekker — who came into Wednesday’s game both averaging 13.6 points — finished with a combined nine total points.Early on, Kaminsky was double-teamed in the post whenever he touched the ball but that eventually led to him getting some early open looks from beyond the arc. He hit his first two three-pointers of the game but after that he would only attempt two more threes, missing both attempts.“I was able to get some things early,” Kaminsky said. “But that closed off pretty quickly and we were able to do some other things. [Jackson] did a great job of playing off the ball screens. He was able to knock down some shots and make some big plays but at the end of the day it wasn’t enough.”Overall, the Blue Devils went 30-for-45 from the field and 7-for-12 (58.3 percent) from beyond the arc. Duke hit its shots when they counted the most, shooting 71.4 percent in the second half.For Wisconsin head coach Bo Ryan, he didn’t see his team playing poor defense; it was just a matter of Duke having a strong shooting night.“They hit some tough shots, but they have good enough players that can do that at times,” Ryan said. “To have as many do it in the same night, that’s just not fair. They were lights out.”Coming into Wednesday’s game, all the hype was surrounding Duke freshman Jahil Okafor who is considered one of the best players in the country and picked by many to be the first pick in the NBA Draft this summer. While Okafor did finish with 13 points, it was another freshman, guard Tyus Jones, who stole the show for the Blue Devils.Jones went 7-for-11 from the floor, including 2-of-3 from beyond the arc and 6-of-8 from the free throw line to lead Duke in scoring with 22 points. Junior Rasheed Sulaimon (14) and senior Quinn Cook (13) rounded out the Duke players scoring in double figures.But it was simply Okafor’s presence that opened things up for his teammates, specifically Jones.“They do a good job on their ball screens with Okafor. You have to compensate something for him,” Jackson said. “Good players are going to make plays in big moments like that so [Jones] played a heck of a game.”Early in the first half, the Badgers had trouble working the ball inside but more than made up for it, scoring their first 12 points on four three-pointers. Kaminsky scored the first six points for UW and freshman guard Bronson Koenig knocked in a three from the corner to put Wisconsin on top 12-9. Despite their four early threes, the Badgers did not make another one of their 13 total attempts in the first half.After Koenig’s three, the Blue Devils came back, tying the score at 12 on a Sulaimon three. Eventually Duke took a 26-20 lead — their largest of the first half — before the Badgers came roaring back on a 6-0 run to tie it at 26 thanks to four points from sophomore forward Vitto Brown and two from forward Duje Dukan.Following the 6-0 run by UW, Duke responded and knocked down back-to-back-to-back three-pointers to finish the half shooting 15-for-25 (60 percent) from the floor, taking a 35-32 lead into halftime.Despite the loss, Ryan and his team will use what they learned in this game to improve going forward. It was a strong early-season test for the Badgers that should pay off as conference play approaches.“[Duke’s] better than us right now. There’s no question,” Ryan said. “We have to shore some things up but a great game to have clips of things that we need to work on.”The Badgers will get their next opportunity to pick up their eighth win of the season Saturday in Milwaukee when they take on in-state rival Marquette.last_img read more

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Ireland face make or break tie with Serbia

first_imgPhoto © Pixabay Aiden McGeady is also an injury doubt due to a hamstring problem.Kick off is at 7.45.At the same time Austria entertain Georgia and Wales are away to Moldova.The Welsh lie third in Group D, just two points behind Ireland. Northern Ireland are on course for a place in the play offs, have secured second place in Group C. Goals from Jonny Evans and Chris Brunt handed them a 2-nil win over the Czech Republic at Windsor Park last night. England are five points clear at the top of Group F, having come from behind to beat Slovakia 2-1 at Wembley. Scotland beat Malta 2-nil at Hampden Park to close to within a point of Slovakia, who are second. The Republic of Ireland face a make or break World Cup qualifier against Group D leaders Serbia at the Aviva Stadium tonight.Martin O’Neil’s men will look to bounce back from Saturday’s disappointing draw in Georgia, with a win that would move them to the top of the table.It is hoped that Norwich playmaker Wes Hoolahan can overcome a tight groin issue.last_img read more

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City Aim to Maintain Top Spot with Chelsea Visit

first_imgAfter conceding the top spot to Liverpool last December, Manchester City on Wednesday regained the Premier League leadership position, but with one game more. The biggest test to remaining on top comes up on Sunday against Chelsea, who interestingly was the first club to beat the Citizens. Therefore, Pep Guardiola would be spurred to take his revenge as well as maintain the leadManchester City will be looking to maintain their rejuvenated title challenge on Sunday when they welcome Chelsea to the Etihad Stadium.The Londoners were responsible for City’s first defeat in their title defence this season, and Pep Guardiola will know that a repeat this weekend could hand the initiative back to Liverpool in the race to the top. The champions go into the weekend as the league leaders courtesy of their midweek triumph over Everton but could be knocked off the summit when Liverpool face Bournemouth today, while Chelsea could also lose their spot in the top four before Sunday’s game gets underway.City and Chelsea match is expected to be a high-voltage game where none of the teams would like to drop a point. Manchester City would be desperate to continue their winning run to keep putting the pressure on Liverpool when they lock horns against Chelsea on Sunday. Due to two disappointing draws by the Reds, Manchester City have closed down the gap and currently on level terms at the top, though Liverpool have a game in hand. On the contrary, Chelsea are in the fourth position with just two points ahead of Manchester United.Guardiola is a coach who has the experience of winning titles in various leagues. So he will keep his players motivated, aiming to use the right tactics and continue the winning streak.Maurizio Sarri in his debut season as coach of Chelsea had a great start to the season but right now, the team is looking to be back to playing at their full potential after losing twice in January.In the first leg at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea outplayed City and handed them their first defeat of the season and Guardiola would be hoping to take revenge at Etihad Stadium and inflict a killer punch on Chelsea’s top four target.Meanwhile, Guardiola has said City’s return to the top of the Premier League was reward for their refusal to concede the title to Liverpool but warned his players beating Chelsea would be a tougher task than seeing off Arsenal and Everton.The mouthwatering clash with Sarri’s side who sit fourth and 12 points off the leaders, could prove pivotal.Guardiola said: “We started well with Arsenal and Everton but now comes a really, really big test — a big bull.“Chelsea is an exceptional team with seven days to prepare that game. We will try. We have to prepare well. This is a real final for us this weekend. If we are able to take these points, we are going to take a huge step forward.“One month ago we could have been 10 points behind with the game against Liverpool and seven days ago we could have been seven points behind. Now we are top of the league.“What is the lesson? Never give up. That is the best advice for all athletes. Everything is in your hands, try to win your games because life changes immediately. That’s why it is not necessary to look at the tables, just prepare well, recover well and prepare the game against Chelsea.”Chelsea head coach is however of the opinion that the Citizens are the best team in Europe.Sarri: “At the moment, in my opinion, Manchester City are the best team in Europe. They are an example for every club.“We need to work. Guardiola is in the third season in the Premier League, Klopp in the fourth or fifth, but we need to work. I don’t know another way. We need only to work and try to reduce the gap.”After the Chelsea encounter, City have a big break before their next Premier League fixture due to the Carabao Cup final, also against the Blues, and FA Cup fifth round trip to Newport.The first leg of their Champions League round of 16 tie at Schalke also comes prior to the midweek home game with West Ham, which will eventually roll round on February 27.“There are a lot of contenders to fight for the title and there are a lot of games to go. We will drop points and hopefully our opponents will also. With the amount of games we have in our legs we cannot give days off, so to be this consistent means a lot.“We came from 100 points and champions last season and then we are in a situation where we could have given up this season but it didn’t happen. We gave an incredible game against Liverpool. These players have shown incredible desire and performances for the last two years. How could I question them?”Guardiola lamented the lack of recovery time between this game and hosting Chelsea but believes this could prove a significant week in the title race should City claim a third successive win.Guardiola believes the demands of challenging for four trophies throughout February will take even more of a toll on his side than the famous demands of fixture congestion in December.City are still in with the chance of completing a historic quadruple of the Champions League, Premier League, FA Cup and League Cup, but Guardiola is concerned at the intense physical demands that will place on his squad.A run of seven games across the four competitions in February is not quite as demanding a schedule as the nine matches they faced during December, three of which City lost.Liverpool will be looking to return to winning ways and regain top spot in the Premier League table today when they welcome Bournemouth to Anfield.The title hopefuls have drawn back-to-back matches to surrender top spot, but host a Bournemouth side in inconsistent form.All of the noise coming out of Anfield is insistent that Liverpool are not feeling the pressure of the title race, but recent results suggest otherwise.The Reds were seven points clear at the top of the table not so long ago, but they will go into Saturday’s match sitting in second place after Manchester City moved above them on goal difference with a midweek win over Everton.A first top-flight title since 1990 remains in Liverpool’s hands as they still have an extra game to play, but Jurgen Klopp will know that his side cannot afford many more slip-ups after back-to-back draws against Leicester City and West Ham United.Head to Head27/02/10 Chelsea  2-4  Man City25/09/10 Man City  1-0  Chelsea20/03/11 Chelsea  2-0  Man City12/12/11 Chelsea  2-1  Man City21/03/12 Man City  2-1  Chelsea25/11/12 Chelsea  0-0  Man City24/02/13 Man City  2-0  Chelsea27/10/13 Chelsea  2-1  Man City03/02/14 Man City  0-1  Chelsea21/09/14 Man City  1-1  Chelsea31/01/15 Chelsea  1-1  Man City16/08/15 Man City  3-0  Chelsea16/04/16 Chelsea  0-3  Man City03/12/16 Man City  1-3  Chelsea05/04/17 Chelsea  2-1  Man City30/09/17 Chelsea  0-1  Man City04/03/18 Man City  1-0  Chelsea08/12/18 Chelsea 2-0 Man CityPremiership TableTeam P GD PtsLiverpool 24 41 61Man City 24 44 56Tottenham 24 26 54Arsenal 24 17 47Chelsea 24 17 47Man Utd 24 13 45Wolves 24 -1 35Everton 24 2 33Watford 24 -1 33Bournemouth 24 -5 33Leicester 24 0 32West Ham 24 -7 31Brighton 24 -9 26Newcastle 24 -11 24Crystal Palace 24 -9 23Southampton 24 -15 23Burnley 24 -20 23Cardiff 24 -26 19Fulham 24 -28 17Huddersfield 24 -28 11PremiershipTodayFulham  v  Man Utd  12:30C’Palace  v  West Ham  15:00Huddersfield  v  Arsenal  15:00Liverpool  v  B’mouth  15:00S’pton  v  Cardiff  15:00Watford  v  Everton  15:00Brighton  v  Burnley  17:30SundayTottenham  v  Leicester  13:30Man City  v  Chelsea  16:00MondayWolvers  v  Newcastle  20:00Hot ShotName     Club  GoalsMohamed Salah  Liverpool  16Aubameyang  Arsenal  15Sergio Agüero  Man City  14Harry Kane  Tottenham  14Eden Hazard  Chelsea  12Sadio Mané  Liverpool  11Raheem Sterling  Man City  10Son Heung-Min  Tottenham  10Callum Wilson  B’mouth  10Aleksandar Mitrovic  Fulham  10Richarlison  Everton  10Glenn Murray  Brighton  10Alexandre Lacazette  Arsenal  9Paul Pogba  Man Utd  9Marcus Rashford  Man Utd  9Raúl Jiménez Wolves 9Roberto Firmino Liverpool 9Gylfi Sigurdsson Everton 9Leroy Sané Man City 8Joshua King 8Felipe Anderson West Ham 8Anthony Martial Man Utd 8Romelu Lukaku Man Utd 8Leroy Sané Man City 8Marcus Rashford Man Utd 8Son Heung-Min Tottenham 8Raúl Jiménez Wolves 8Felipe Anderson West Ham 8Anthony Martial Man Utd 8Romelu Lukaku Man Utd 8Spanish La Liga FixturesTodayGetafe  v  Celta Vigo  12:00Atlético  v  Madrid  15:15Espanyol  v  Vallecano  17:30Girona  v  Huesca  19:45SundayLeganés  v  Real Betis  11:00Valencia  v  Sociedad  15:15Sevilla  v  Eibar  17:30Bilbao  v  Barcelona  19:45MondayAlavés  v Levante  20:00Serie ATodayFiorentina  v  Napoli  17:00Parma  v  Inter  19:30SundayBologna  v  Genoa  11:30Atalanta  v  SPAL  14:00Sampdoria  v  Frosinone  14:00Torino  v  Udinese  14:00Sassuolo  v  Juventus  17:00AC Milan  v  Cagliari  19:30Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

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The Youth Kick Off Miami Carnival 2019 With Carnival Jr.

first_imgMIAMI, Florida – South Florida’s youth will showcase pageantry, vibrancy, and pride at the annual Miami Carnival Jr. Carnival. This annual Caribbean family-friendly event fosters Caribbean pride, Carnival tradition, and artistic expression. With multiple Jr. Carnival bands, young masqueraders will be judged based on their creativity, presentation, originality, and craftsmanship of their vibrant and colorful masquerade costumes.Miami Carnival’s Jr. Carnival takes place Saturday, October 5, 2019, at Central Broward Regional Park (3700 NW 11th Place, Lauderhill, FL 33311). Gates open at 1 pm and the parade begins at 4 pm.With more than ten junior masquerade bands, the Junior Carnival is growing and has become a mainstay of the Miami Broward Carnival experience.“The Jr. Carnival product is an integral component in the celebration of Carnival and allowing the kids to embrace their culture and participate in an expression of self, needs more attention and support. I am eager to do so, and look forward to this year’s event and to making the experience a more inclusive one,” said Asa Sealy, Board member of Miami Broward Carnival One Host Committee.Miami Junior Carnival unleashes South Florida’s youth inhibitions, creativity and confidence like no other local events. Children from all walks of life are celebrated and uplifted in a safe, family-friendly environment.“We want to give an opportunity to express, entertain, engage and teach the youth with our costumes,” says Giselle d’ Wassi One, Bandleader for Wassi Babes Jr. Carnival. “I think about the young masquerader who wants to be beautiful and stand out but be comfortable enough to have an unrestricted phenomenal experience on the parade route.”As part of the Miami Broward Jr. Carnival experience, the Royal Miss Miami Carnival Pageant encourage young Caribbean American women to take pride in their culture, live boldly, and own their confidence.“Miami Broward Carnival Pageant committee and I feel fulfilled and rewarded that we have afforded the young women of our community a forum to showcase their talents & gifts that they have brought to the universe,” said Yolanda Henry, of Miss Miami Carnival Pageant.This event serves as a celebration of Caribbean culture and has also become a beacon of inclusion and a teaching moment to non-Caribbean children of diverse backgrounds who participate in the parade.Miami Broward Carnival is proud to be once again sponsored by America’s Most Convenient Bank, TD Bank. This year, TD Bank will provide free giveaways, face painting, and fun photo booth to capture this special memory.“TD Bank is pleased to once again sponsor the Miami Broward Jr. Carnival for the 4th year in a row,” said Andre Khan, V.P. Diversity & Inclusion Relationship Manager. “As the human bank, we are invested in making a positive and lasting impact on the communities in which we live, work, and play. TD Bank couldn’t be more excited to be a part of such a culturally enriching event.”last_img read more

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Lakers need Magic and more to rebuild via NBA draft

first_img“Bobby told Lucy the world ain’t round, drops off sharp at the edge of town. Lucy, you know the world must be flat, cause when people leave town they never come back.” — Hal KetchumKyrie Irving is sticking with this.He says the world is flat. And he swears he’s not confused by The Flats, one of Cleveland’s entertainment districts.It’s reminiscent of the former Dodgers outfielder who claimed H2O had no scientific credibility. “They made that up,” he said. The effort to find a true 2017 Rookie of the Year might require the cast from “Without A Trace.” Second-round pick Malcolm Brogdon is averaging 9.4 points for Milwaukee. He’s the highest-scoring 2016 draftee among those who have played more than 20 games.Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid is easily the most impressive “rookie,” but he left Kansas three years ago and has played only 31 games this season.Four years ago, Cleveland chose Anthony Bennett first overall. He’s playing in Turkey. Of players drafted the past four seasons, only Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo has been an All-Star.There’s the infamous 2006 draft, in which Andrea Bargnani, Adam Morrison, Tyrus Thomas and Shelden Williams went 1-3-4-5.Scouts say the 2017 draft is different, with Washington’s Markelle Fultz, UCLA’s Lonzo Ball and Kansas’ Josh Jackson, but we’ve heard that before.To spin the draft into gold, teams have to time their bad seasons with the arrival of true genius, and get some ping-pong luck at the lottery table. San Antonio drew David Robinson and Tim Duncan on first overall picks. The latter happened in 1997. The Spurs haven’t picked higher than 20th since then and have set a league record for most consecutive 50-win seasons. Maybe one day they’ll hold a seminar. The Clippers still lead the NBA in lottery appearances with 22, but they have not sat on the Panel of Shame since 2010.Minnesota is next with 20. The Timberwolves are an example of misery begetting misery. They have been ping-ponged 11 consecutive times. Seven times in that span they had a top five pick. In 2009 they had No. 5 and No. 6 and drafted Ricky Rubio and Jonny Flynn. Hats, handshakes, hugs all around. The No. 7 pick was Steph Curry.Sacramento also has grazed from the lottery trough 20 times, including each of the past 10. The city contributed $223 million toward the new arena into which the Kings moved in October. The Kings are honoring that commitment by dissolving themselves.When they unloaded DeMarcus Cousins on Sunday, one of the trinkets they received from New Orleans was Tyreke Evans. One may recall Evans was a fourth-overall pick by the Kings in 2009 and then a Rookie of the year. Now he’s an expiring salary.Isaiah Thomas, once the 60th and final draftee and now an MVP candidate, can be a free agent in 2018. So can Russell Westbrook, DeAndre Jordan, Paul George, DeMarcus Cousins and LaMarcus Aldridge. And LeBron James, for that matter. This summer, the eligibles could include Curry, Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, Gordon Hayward, Kyle Lowry and Paul Millsap.The new collective bargaining agreement allows teams to offer a six-year contract to its free agents, provided they’ve been All-NBA players. That is why the Lakers had little chance at those players. A persuasive deal-maker with Magic’s credentials could narrow those odds.Lost in Tuesday’s regime change was the inexplicable firing of John Black, the communications chief for nearly three decades. With the demands and the tumult, Black could have qualified for a FEMA position. His counterpart with the Chargers is Bill Johnston, who is not coming to L.A. due to family priorities. Black’s knowledge of L.A. would be invaluable for a franchise whose logo got booed off the videoboard during a recent Clippers-Lakers game.Anyway, the draft is as much of a lottery as the lottery is. But you can’t buy every free agent you want, and you can’t trade constructively without the assets you get from the draft.So how to rebuild?You don’t. Unless you keep winning, you fall off the edge.Magic’s return was the first postcard. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersBut maybe Irving has noticed something. When NBA teams fall off the edge, it takes them far longer to come back around than Magellan did.That is the reality haunting the Lakers. Three years of lottery picks have produced what they normally produce. Another lottery pick.As Magic Johnson grabs the steering wheel, he knows they have several promising players that will go nowhere without a show-stopper.In other sports, it’s helpful to have an Alpha Centauri. In the NBA, it is essential.And the draft does not produce one every year. Far from it.center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

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