How Allen Crabbe became Portland’s new $75 million man

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LAS VEGAS — With his NBA career at a crossroads, Allen Crabbe was committed to getting better.

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That commitment was pushed to the limit one night during the summer between Crabbe’s second and third seasons in the league, when his best friend, trainer and roommate, Casey Trujeque, wanted him to get up at the crack of dawn to attend a grueling Bikram Yoga class.

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Crabbe thought he was going to have the following day off, but Trujeque changed his mind, leading to an argument at the dinner table.

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“Who in their right mind would wake up at 5 a.m. to go to Bikram Yoga?” Trujeque loosely recalls Crabbe saying.

“A kid trying to make $80 million would,” Trujeque replied angrily before leaving the table and going to his room.

Trujeque did not set his alarm clock, figuring Crabbe would be sleeping in. But come 5 a.m., Trujeque received a knock on his door.

“Allen said, “Casey, let’s go,'” Trujeque recalled. “And right then and there I was like ‘Allen’s going to be successful.’ He really wants this.”

Editor’s PicksBlazers will re-sign Crabbe for 4 years, $75M

Allen Crabbe confirmed that the the Trail Blazers have matched the Brooklyn Nets Jerseys’ four-year, $75 million offer sheet, keeping the restricted free-agent guard in Portland.

Nets GM: Team moves on after free agent misses

It’s back to the drawing board for Nets general manager Sean Marks and the rest of the front office after Brooklyn lost out on Allen Crabbe and Tyler Johnson.

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Crabbe laughed upon having the story relayed to him.

“I got up and did it because when you do things you don’t want to do, you’re going to reap those benefits in the end,” Crabbe said. “That’s the only way you can get better: getting comfortable by doing things that are uncomfortable.”

After falling into the second round of the 2013 draft and barely playing in his first two seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers Jerseys, Crabbe worked out five times a week with Trujeque during the summer of 2015 — and he used that rigorous workout regimen as a springboard to post a career year in which he averaged 10.3 points and shot 39.4 percent from 3-point range in 81 games.

The 24-year-old restricted free-agent’s reward: a staggering four-year, $75 million offer sheet from the Brooklyn Nets Jerseys, which the Blazers matched on Sunday to keep him in Portland.

Not bad for a guy who had made all of $2.6 million in his first three seasons combined.

“It’s a reward for working hard, staying patient and trusting the process,” said Crabbe, who switched agents before the free-agency process began and also received interest from the Philadelphia 76ers Jerseys and Sacramento Kings Jerseys.

“I could’ve given up, but I did everything that the organization asked of me and just waited my turn. Once we had all those roster changes, I knew there was going to be an opportunity, and I just made sure I didn’t miss out on it.”

For Crabbe, the new deal was worth a career of ups-and-downs.

Crabbe and Trujeque met on the AAU travel circuit in Los Angeles when they were in eighth grade, and the duo ended up becoming teammates at Price High School. From there, their paths diverged — with Crabbe going on to star at California and Trujeque getting injured at Montana State and quitting basketball to focus on training athletes — but they always remained in close contact.

After Crabbe fell to No. 31 in the draft — largely due to a right foot injury he suffered during a pre-draft workout with the New York Knicks Jerseys — and his rights were acquired by the Blazers, Crabbe asked Trujeque to move to Portland with him on the advice of his former agent.


Early on, it was a struggle. Crabbe played just 15 games as a rookie, sitting on the bench in a suit rather than a jersey most nights, and all the DNP-CDs made him question whether he could ever make it.

Allen Crabbe, who has worked extensively on his game over the past year, was rewarded this week with a four-year, $75 million deal to stay with the Blazers. Sam Forencich/Getty Images

He played more his second year, but barely. If he was going to remain in the NBA, Year 3 would be crucial. Crabbe committed to working out with Trujeque in Portland rather than going back to L.A. like usual. The duo did three workouts per day: ball-handling, a weight-lifting and game-situations sessions. And yes, occasionally there was the Bikram Yoga sessions too.

Crabbe constantly practiced coming off pin-downs and working out of pick-and-rolls. He became more consistent with his one- and two-dribble pull-up jumpers. He played well in Summer League and with Nicolas Batum, Wesley Matthews and Arron Afflalo all leaving, plenty of minutes opened up in the Blazers rotation.

Playing behind starters Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, Crabbe was able to have a significant impact off the bench. He hit 53.5 percent of his shots from 10-16 feet and 44.9 percent of his shots from 16 feet-3-point arc, according to

Crabbe was going to be the starter in Brooklyn, something he was looking forward to. But in Portland, he’ll likely continue in a reserve role while playing in a system he’s extremely comfortable in. He just wants to prove he’s worth every penny the Blazers gave him.

“It’s definitely not the time to chill, take a break or relax because I got the contract I wanted,” Crabbe said. “For me as a basketball player, it’s important to live up to those expectations and prove that this contract wasn’t a fluke or that they wasted all this money they’ve invested in me.”

His mentality — the same one that enabled him to wake up for that Bikram Yoga class at 5 a.m. — should certainly help.

“I always feel like I’ve been the underdog and had to prove myself year after year,” Crabbe said.

“Things weren’t handed to me at all. And I really had to work behind the scenes in order to get to where I’m at now.”

NFL Preseason Blitz: Carson Wentz has rocky debut

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Philadelphia Eagles Jerseys Jerseys fans couldn’t even get to halftime of the preseason opener before the first “We want Wentz!” chant.

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You can’t blame them for being excited about quarterback Carson Wentz, the second pick of the NFL draft. He’s the Eagles Jerseys’ future, and Thursday night was the fans’ first look at him in game action. Wentz gave the fans enough reason for hope, and he gave the coaches enough mistakes to correct.

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Wentz got in late in the first half of the Eagles Jerseys’ 17-9 win against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Jerseys Jerseys, and his first completion showed why he was the second pick of the draft.

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After an incompletion, Wentz stepped up in the pocket toward his right and delivered a blazing fastball to Zach Ertz Jerseys for a 19-yard gain. Nobody ever questioned if Wentz’s arm is good enough.

[Yahoo Fantasy Football is open for the 2016 season. Sign up now]

Wentz is also a solid athlete, showing off his athleticism on one third-quarter run when he avoided the rush, got outside and then cut upfield for a nice gain. Wentz also ran a third-down read option, but was upended just before he got the first down.

Wentz had some moments when it was clear why the Eagles Jerseys gave up so much in a trade to move up and draft him, but he also looked like a rookie. He seemed a bit amped up — he fired a third-down pass over Ertz, throwing his fastball when a changeup would have gotten the completion. He also had a terrible throw in the third quarter. On third-and-10, with a clean pocket and receiver Cayleb Jones running wide open downfield. Wentz didn’t come close, throwing it way over Jones’ head and incomplete.

Wentz had his worst rookie moment in the third quarter. With the Eagles Jerseys in the red zone, his intended target ran a hesitation route crossing the field. And Wentz, just before he was crushed by defensive tackle A.J. Francis Jerseys, made a dangerous throw that sailed too high and was picked off. He’ll learn that QBs shouldn’t make throws like that, especially so close to the end zone.

Nobody expected Wentz to look like a polished pro, especially coming from an FCS program at North Dakota State, and he was predictably uneven. Wentz won’t start the regular season for the Eagles Jerseys unless something unexpected happens to Sam Bradford Jerseys and Chase Daniel Jerseys over the next few weeks. So he’ll have plenty of time, over the next three weeks and beyond, to get used to the NFL.

Carson Wentz in his preseason debut (AP)More More

The Jacksonville Jaguars Jerseys Jerseys are expected to make a nice jump this season, and the first look at them in the preseason won’t slow down that hype.

Allen Robinson Jerseys was in midseason form in Jacksonville’s 17-13 loss to the New York Jets Jerseys Jerseys, with a few nice catches including an incredible grab for 45 yards. He had 80 yards in the first quarter. Thanks to his No. 1 receiver grabbing everything thrown his way, quarterback Blake Bortles Jerseys was 6-of-7 for 105 yards.

The run game looked good too. Chris Ivory Jerseys had 26 yards and a touchdown on six carries. T.J. Yeldon made the most of his four carries, getting 26 yards. The Jaguars Jerseys’ starters played most of the first quarter, and they led 10-0 at the end of it.


The Jaguars Jerseys had a great offseason, grabbing a few high-priced veterans and getting Jalen Rams Jerseysey and Myles Jack in the draft. If the starting offense is as efficient as it was Thursday night, the Jaguars Jerseys should be fun to watch this season.


The preseason doesn’t count, but New England Patriots Jerseys Jerseys running back Tyler Gaffney Jerseys had a moment in a 34-22 win over the New Orleans Saints Jerseys Jerseys that had to feel special.

Gaffney missed each of the past two seasons, and each of the past two preseasons as well, due to injuries. Thursday was the first preseason game of his career, about 27 months after he was a sixth-round pick of the Carolina Panthers Jerseys Jerseys. It was his first game since Jan. 1, 2014, when he had 91 yards and a touchdown for Stanford in a 24-20 Rose Bowl loss to Michigan State. And Gaffney showed why the Patriots Jerseys brought him back this season, even after he couldn’t stay healthy the previous two years.

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Gaffney took a handoff to the left, cut back right and ran past the Saints Jerseys’ defense for a 44-yard touchdown. That’s a great moment for him.

He might not be just a heartwarming preseason story either. Gaffney has had some nice reviews in camp, and it’s not like the Patriots Jerseys (who claimed Gaffney off waivers in 2014 when the Panthers Jerseys tried to get him to injured reserve) are loaded at running back. Dion Lewis is still on the physically unable to perform list, LeGarrette Blount Jerseys looked sluggish on many of his runs (as he did in 2015) and James White Jerseys is reportedly on the roster bubble.

Gaffney could make the team and have a role, especially if he has more runs like he did against the Saints Jerseys.


Atlanta Falcons Jerseys Jerseys 23, Washington Redskins Jerseys Jerseys 17: J.D. McKissic had the kind of play that could stick in the coaches’ minds when they’re evaluating plans for the regular-season roster or practice squad. McKissic took the opening kickoff of the second half and exploded upfield for a 101-yard touchdown. It was very well blocked, but still a good return by McKissic, an undrafted receiver from Arkansas State. McKissic also had a 14-yard punt return.

Baltimore Ravens Jerseys Jerseys 22, Carolina Panthers Jerseys Jerseys 19: The Ravens Jerseys gave Terrance West Jerseys a good look at tailback. Javorius Allen started (Justin Forsett Jerseys didn’t play), but West got a bulk of the work. The results were mixed. West got only 25 yards on his nine carries, but had two short touchdowns. He dove over the pylon on fourth down for one score, and reversed field and outran the defense to the end zone for the other. He’ll get more looks as he tries to lock up his role in the Ravens Jerseys’ backfield.

Denver Broncos Jerseys Jerseys 22, Chicago Bears Jerseys Jerseys 0: Mark Sanchez Jerseys had a nice pass to Virgil Green Jerseys on Denver’s first drive, then stood in against the blitz to deliver a 32-yard touchdown to Demaryius Thomas Jerseys. Then he had an inexcusable mistake. Sanchez seemingly never saw cornerback Bryce Callahan Jerseys lurking in coverage, and Callahan tipped up a pass that was intercepted by linebacker Jerrell Freeman Jerseys. That sums up Sanchez: He can make good plays here and there, but mistakes have defined him. Trevor Siemian Jerseys, who is competing with Sanchez for the starting spot, wasn’t spectacular but he also didn’t turn the ball over. (For more on the Broncos Jerseys’ quarterback battle, here’s Eric Edholm’s report from Soldier Field on Thursday night.)


• With last week’s Hall of Fame game being canceled, the first kickoff of the NFL preseason happened at about 7:07 p.m. Eastern time in Philadelphia. And Buccaneers Jerseys returner Kenny Bell Jerseys took the opening kickoff of the season, the first football we’ve seen since Super Bowl 50 … and he fumbled it away. Hopefully that’s not an omen for this season.

• Carson Wentz wasn’t the only first-round rookie quarterback to make his debut. Paxton Lynch played for the Broncos Jerseys and completed 6 of 7 passes for 74 yards. He looked comfortable in his first action.

• The competition for touches in the Ravens Jerseys backfield will be fierce. Terrance West Jerseys reportedly has a chance to start. Rookie running back Kenneth Dixon made his mark with a nice 19-yard run, putting a great move on Panthers Jerseys safety Tre Boston Jerseys in the open field. Dixon had 44 yards on nine carries. And Javorius Allen, who started with Justin Forsett Jerseys out, had a 19-yard touchdown catch.

• Everyone assumes that with Kelvin Benjamin Jerseys back, he’ll be the Panthers Jerseys’ No. 1 receiver. Devin Funchess Jerseys might have a say in that. Funchess had a great touchdown grab, overpowering cornerback Shareece Wright Jerseys in the end zone for a 10-yard score. He used his big body to box out Wright and Wright was helpless to break it up. Funchess, a second-round pick last year, finished his rookie season pretty well too. Benjamin, who was out last season with a knee injury, made his return and had one catch for 5 yards.

• There’s a reason the Eagles Jerseys gave Fletcher Cox Jerseys a mega-extension this offseason. In the first quarter Thursday, Cox got an upfield push on Buccaneers Jerseys right guard Ali Marpet Jerseys and knocked the ball out of the hand of Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston Jerseys. Cox then recovered the fumble. Cox is moving to defensive tackle in new coordinator Jim Schwartz’s 4-3 scheme and should have a huge year.

• Ryan Mathews Jerseys is rarely healthy, but the Eagles Jerseys’ back is very good when he is in the lineup. He had just two carries on Thursday but both were nice. First he had a strong inside run for 10 yards. Then — with the Eagles Jerseys lining up with three tight ends to the right of the formation — Mathews got in for a 5-yard score.

• Michael Thomas Jerseys, the Saints Jerseys’ second-round pick, had a nice first game. He caught four passes for 67 yards, including a reception down the sideline in which he showed great concentration and hands to secure the catch and get both feet in before going out of bounds. He’s a big target and should be a favorite target of Drew Brees Jerseys from Week 1 on.

• Here’s the downside of having four quarterbacks who might all make the roster: Second-round pick Christian Hackenberg didn’t play in Thursday night’s opener. Ryan Fitzpatrick Jerseys started, Geno Smith Jerseys came in second and Bryce Petty played the rest of the game. The reason Jets Jerseys coach Todd Bowles gave for Hackenberg not playing is he has had only limited practice reps. The Jets Jerseys’ plans probably don’t include playing Hackenberg at all this regular season, and the lack of action now doesn’t seem ideal for his development.

• For those interested in the Bears Jerseys’ running back depth chart: Jeremy Langford Jerseys had 7 yards on four carries, Ka’Deem Carey had 8 yards on three carries and rookie Jordan Howard had 12 yards on five carries. No bueno. However, they were going against a Broncos Jerseys defense that pitched a shutout and looked like it was ready for the regular season.

• Also, ICYMI from Shutdown Corner: Buccaneers Jerseys rookie kicker Roberto Aguayo had a rough start and New England Patriots Jerseys Jerseys quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo Jerseys had an up-and-down preseason opener.

– – – – – – –

Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter! Follow @YahooSchwab

Las Vegas NHL team names Murray Craven senior vice president

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LAS VEGAS (AP) — Las Vegas NHL owner Bill Foley has hired longtime adviser Murray Craven as the expansion team’s senior vice president.


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Craven will be responsible for establishing the club’s top minor-league affiliate in the American Hockey League, developing the practice facility in Summerlin, Nevada, building up facilities at T-Mobile Arena and overseeing projects at the wholesale jerseys usa request of general manager George McPhee.

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The 52-year-old former NHL player has been Foley’s right-hand man throughout the expansion process, which began with a season-ticket drive in early 2015 and culminated with the awarding of a franchise in June. Foley said last month that Craven is a ”street-smart guy” who he wanted to be involved with the organization.

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Craven played 18 NHL seasons for the Red Wings, Flyers, Whalers, Canucks, Blackhawks and Sharks from 1982-1999.

Chicago Cubs feel energized for second-half run

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CHICAGO — With their historic All-Star moment behind them, seven Chicago Cubs Jerseys Jerseys will rejoin their team for the start of the second half Friday with one question in mind: Which Cubs Jerseys team will show up?

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Is it the one that shot out of the gate from spring training en route to baseball’s best record, or the one that limped home with the National League Jerseys’s sixth-worst winning percentage in the final Weeks Jerseys?

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We can go a long way toward answering that question if we know how the All-Stars are feeling after their journey from Chicago to Pittsburgh to San Diego and now back to Chicago. Did they get any rest?

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“I felt rejuvenated today,” Anthony Rizzo Jerseys Jerseys said after Tuesday’s All-Star Game. “The body is fine. These mental days are really nice. … We pLa Jerseysn on having a fun second half. It’s going to be entertaining.”

We know it will be interesting, but the entertainment comes if they get back to their dominant ways. Odds are they will. The next time the formerly road-weary team boards a pLa Jerseysne will be Aug. 4. Road games in Chicago (against the White Sox Jerseys) and Milwaukee, combined with 14 games at Wrigley Field, set them up for a post-All-Star break run simiLa Jerseysr to the one they went on La Jerseysst year. As for their disastrous pLa Jerseysy before the break, pitcher Jon Lester Jerseys Jerseys opined on his team’s plight during media day at the All-Star Game on Monday.

“I was talking to [bench coach] Davey Martin Jerseysez Jerseys,” Lester Jerseys said. “He had a good point. The more you think about it, the more it’s true. It seems like every year, two Weeks Jerseys before the break or after the break, something crazy Happ Jerseysens. I think you saw that with us and even around baseball. You saw a spike in home runs and offenses and all this stuff. Hopefully they got that all out of their system and we can come back and get back to pLa Jerseysying normal games. We usually don’t pLa Jerseysy back-and-forth games like that. May Jerseysbe 3-2, not 7-6. I think every win in those La Jerseysst couple Weeks Jerseys was important to try and get us back going. May Jerseysbe Sunday was it. Our pitching staff was not its normal self. This break will be good.”

The numbers back up Lester Jerseys. We already know the Cubs Jerseys were struggling, but did you realize the first-pLa Jerseysce Texas Rangers Jerseys Jerseys –- this weekend’s opponent -– went 5-9 over the past two Weeks Jerseys? That’s the exact same record as the Cubs Jerseys. There’s more. The division-leading Baltimore Orioles Jerseys Jerseys went 6-6, and the formerly red-hot CleveLa Jerseysnd Indians Jerseys Jerseys finished up 8-6. Only the Washington Nationals Jerseys Jerseys went on a run, going 10-4 before the break.

As for offense around the League Jerseys, batters have had their way recently. According to ESPN Stats & Information, runs per game increased from 4.43 to 4.93 in the final two Weeks Jerseys before the break, batting averages jumped 12 points and the League Jerseys OPS increased from .737 to .770. Those numbers even had baseball commissioner Rob Manfred addressing the issue at the All-Star Game. He didn’t have any good answers and neither do the Cubs Jerseys –- except that grueling schedule.

Kris BRyan Jerseyst Jerseys is greeted in the dugout after his first-inning home run Tuesday in the All-Star Game in San Diego. The Cubs Jerseys open the second half at home against the Rangers Jerseys. Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Now May Jerseysbe you don’t care about the numbers around baseball and you don’t want to hear about rough travel or you’re sick of hearing the word “fatigue.” If it all sounds like excuses, Cubs Jerseys manager Joe Maddon gets it. But he says he believes there’s a fine line between an excuse and a reason.

“It De Jerseyspends on who’s listening,” he said before the break. “The people that want to be more negative or skeptical will see it as an excuse. People that are more pragmatic or logical see it as a reason.

“You don’t want to throw that [travel] out there as an excuse. What’s nice is what’s going to Happ Jerseysen afterwards. It gets better.”

It gets a whole lot better, so we’ll soon have a good iDe Jerseysa as to what was causing the Cubs Jerseys so many problems.

“It’s been a run without a break,” he said. “Fatigue enters in for everybody, if they want to admit it or not. It was a tough three Weeks Jerseys. It was a fatigue situation more than anything. When you’re fatigued, you try to manufacture something that’s not there.”


Isn’t that the exact way to De Jerseysscribe some of the Cubs Jerseys’ mistakes pre-break? Think of the baserunning errors or poor De Jerseyscisions in the field. May Jerseysbe they all stemmed from that brutal grind, which incluDe Jerseysd 23 of 33 games on the road. But that’s all behind them now. A couple of days in beautiful San Diego might have been the trick, and now they get a couple of more days before starting up again.

“This was the perfect couple days to hit that reset button,” Kris BRyan Jerseyst Jerseys said. “A much-neeDe Jerseysd All-Star break, especially for the Cubs Jerseys.”

Ben Zobrist Jerseys Jerseys was already seeing the benefit for a Young Jerseys pLa Jerseysyer such as Addison Russell Jerseys Jerseys, since confiDe Jerseysnce is everything in baseball.

“It’s a good memory whether you get a hit or not,” Zobrist Jerseys said. “This will be really good for him and we still have two days off.”

Of course, BRyan Jerseyst doesn’t need a confiDe Jerseysnce boost, but his All-Star Game home run Tuesday is just another confirmation that he’s already one of the best Young Jerseys pLa Jerseysyers in the game.

“The biggest stage you can be on right now and he shined like he always does,” Rizzo Jerseys said.

As important as rest is for the Cubs Jerseys, getting healthy is also a priority. Zobrist Jerseys maDe Jerseys a point of telling anyone who would listen that the absence of De Jerseysxter Fowler Jerseys Jerseys (hamstring) and David Ross Jerseys Jerseys (concussion) cost the Cubs Jerseys more than production.

“When those guys are out or get injured, that crushes a team,” Zobrist Jerseys said. “They give us energy.”

So does pLa Jerseysying in an All-Star Game. To a man, the Cubs Jerseys All-Stars said they felt rejuvenated within hours of arriving in San Diego. We will find out how true that is starting Friday, when the best of the American League Jerseys visits Wrigley Field.

Zobrist Jerseys was asked if pLa Jerseysying the first-pLa Jerseysce Rangers Jerseys gives the series some special meaning. Pausing before answering, Zobrist Jerseys responDe Jerseysd: “I wish it did, but it doesn’t because it’s July and we’re coming out of the All-Star break. We have to focus on what we’re doing and our execution. We haven’t executed very well the La Jerseysst few Weeks Jerseys.

“It [the schedule] beat us up a little bit. It Happ Jerseysens.”

Reason or excuse? We’ll find out soon.