#1 drive a car sponsored by Haas, said he believes Buschs testimony and that von zhanjiao1212 14.05.2019 03:07

TORONTO -- They called it a serious mistake that Jonas Valanciunas must learn from. Willian Brazil Jersey . But otherwise the Toronto Raptors players and staff are standing behind their starting centre after he was charged with drunk driving. The 21-year-old apologized to his teammates, and will play in Wednesdays game against the visiting Philadelphia 76ers, but news of his arrest drew a large contingent of media to practice on Tuesday and negative attention to a team bound for the playoffs for the first time in six seasons. "(I was) disappointed a little bit," Raptors GM Masai Ujiri said of his reaction to the arrest. "As an organization, its not something we take lightly, its not something I feel we are just going to brush aside. (But) hes a young kid ... I look at all of you here and I wonder what we were all doing when we were 21, so there are mistakes that are made." Valanciunas was arrested early Monday morning in Wasaga Beach, Ont., a popular vacation destination for college students about 100 kilometres north of downtown Toronto, and charged with having more than 80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood. Police say they began investigating after a report that a vehicle went through a drive-thru with open beer bottles visible. The Lithuanian met with Ujiri for an hour on Monday, and had his "face in his hands," the GM said. He also met with Tim Leiweke, the president and CEO of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment. "I think he feels he let his teammates down, he let his fans down, the organization," Ujiri said. "Thats Jonas, hes a great kid. And I think he made some kind of a mistake, but I think the most important thing is its not going to happen again, and he understands that." Ujiri spoke to a media horde of more than 40-strong. There were nine television cameras. Valanciunas was not made available to reporters after what coach Dwane Casey said was a great practice by the sophomore centre, but issued a statement with an apology on Monday. "I hold myself to a high standard and take my role as a member of the Toronto Raptors very seriously," Valanciunas said. "I apologize to the organization, my teammates, my family and my fans, and regret any negativity this incident has brought upon them." Valanciunass first court appearance is scheduled for Collingwood, Ont., on April 22, which is a couple of days after the start of the playoffs. Valanciunas does not have to attend and so a lawyer will stand in for him. He still may face a suspension of a couple of games by the NBA, but that wouldnt come until the results of his trial which would likely be during the summer. The Raptors will decide on any further punishment such as a fine or suspension following the leagues ruling. Most of the Raptors and their families attended the Toronto Blue Jays game on a day off from practice Sunday. Ujiri said Valanciunas instead went to Wasaga Beach with his wife and some friends. The seven-footer is averaging 11 points and 8.6 rebounds a game, and his growth this season is a big part of why the Raptors are in third in the Eastern Conference and poised to win the Atlantic Division title. Casey spoke of Valanciunas much like he would a son. "Like I told him, Im upset with him and disappointed, but hes mine so we love him," Casey said. "He made a mistake, but like any other young man has probably done before, or had the opportunity before. We dont condone it, the organization doesnt condone it, and its a tough time of year to do it. But its happened. ... "We all make mistakes, its what we do after it that is how were going to be judged." Kyle Lowry said the young teammate that he views as a little brother was "sick right now" over the mistake. "Hes really hurt by it, hes really embarrassed by it, very disappointed in himself. I can tell you that for sure," the veteran point guard said. "Its just a mistake that he made, its unfortunate that it happened to such a good kid in JV, but it happened, hes 21, hes going to learn from it. Im sure hell never make that mistake again," he added. Lowry said his advice was: "Just be more responsible. We have all the benefits of having drivers and taxis. Thats it, be more responsible." Raptors all-star DeMar DeRozan said the incident was a regrettable mistake, but added the players support for each other in any situation is part of what has made Toronto one of the best teams in the East this season. "At the end of the day, were all human. We can look at everybody in here and ask them: have they done something wrong, or made a mistake in life. Its part of life. Its something you learn from and grow from." "No matter what guys go through, were always there for them, family, whatever it may be, somebodys kid is sick ... its always something, and were always there for one another. Thats big because you dont get that with every team that you play for." The Raptors said the negative news wont be a distraction to the team that has won six of its last seven games. "Not at all," Lowry said. "We had a great practice today, really spirited, really competitive, really positive vibe in there." "Ive been coaching since 79 and Ive seen a little bit of everything," Casey added. "This is very serious, a very serious matter, but its not enough to distract the team and that type of thing. "His teammates were very supportive of him, and to them its a great lesson also, the focus and the discipline you have to have in your own life to go forward." The last Raptor to be charged with drunk driving while still a member of the team was Dee Brown, who was stopped by police in 1999 in Toronto and charged with impaired driving and later convicted. But a judge found he was a victim of racial profiling and overturned the conviction. Filipe Luis Jersey . The day began ominously for the Rangers when star pitcher Yu Darvish was scratched from his scheduled start with stiffness in his neck. Fill-in Scott Baker gave up three hits over six innings and Chris Gimenez hit a tiebreaking two-out RBI single in the sixth off Phil Hughes. Paulinho Jersey . "Im going to send Webbie a six-pack (of beer) tonight," she said. Webb wasnt sure that would help. "Ill probably drink one and go to sleep," the Australian veteran said. The two players set up a Sunday showdown between former HSBC champions after finishing off their third rounds with identical birdies over three of the last five holes Saturday to separate themselves slightly from the rest of the crowded leaderboard. http://www.soccerbrazilonline.com/Ederson-Copa-America-Jersey/ . -- Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw was placed on the 15-day disabled list Saturday for the first time in his seven-year career because of a swollen muscle in his left upper back.CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Kurt Busch is confident he is in line for his best NASCAR season ever despite a domestic violence case that could keep him off the track.Busch said Tuesday at NASCARs annual media tour he is eager for a resolution to the highly-publicized case involving ex-girlfriend Patricia Driscoll, who claims Busch assaulted her in his motorhome at Dover International Speedway last September.Driscoll claims Busch slammed her head into a wall three times.Busch has steadfastly denied the allegations, repeating again Tuesday its a matter of seeing through things and understanding truth. He has not been charged by authorities, but the Delaware Attorney Generals office still has the investigation.Busch wouldnt say if hes heard from NASCAR about a possible suspension.We are waiting on the investigation to find a conclusion, Busch said.A court ruling on Driscolls request for a no-contact order is expected any day.Busch said in the meantime, his focus is on the upcoming Daytona 500 and winning the second straight Sprint Cup championship for Stewart-Haas Racing.I feel like 2015 can be the best year that I have ever had with the situation with (crew chief) Tony Gibson and being the second year with the team, Busch said. My years of experience with teams in the second year have always produced the best result.He said he doesnt feel the domestic violence case will be a distraction for him or his teammates.The team has done a great job of preparing the No. 41 cars, Busch said. That is where we cant let the distraction on the outside steer us from where the focus needs to be — and thats running well at Daytona trying to win the 500.Busch appeared in court Jan. 14 over Driscolls request for a no-contact order, where he claimed she is a trained assassin who was dispatched on covert missions around the world. Busch also testified his ex-girlfriend told him she was a mercenary who killed people for a living. He said she showed him picttures of bodies with gunshot wounds and once saw her in a blood-stained dress. Marquinhos Jersey. He didnt back off from the claims on Tuesday.What I said, I was under oath, Busch said.Whether Busch is allowed to race this season will likely depend on the outcome of the case. Gene Haas, who hand-picked Busch to drive a car sponsored by Haas, said he believes Buschs testimony and that he will be exonerated. Haas said he hasnt considered suspending his driver.Domestic violence is very serious, but at the same time I do believe in due process, Haas said. At the same time I feel there can be abuses to the system, too.Driscoll has claimed that Busch abuses alcohol and suffers from depression. He denied it and pointed to his performance in the Indianapolis 500 last May, when he ran both the IndyCar race and NASCARs Coca-Cola 600 on the same day, as proof that he has no issues.Obviously it would be difficult to have all of these symptoms and to race at the top levels and finish sixth in the Indy 500 and things like that, Busch said.Haas said he has seen no evidence of Busch having any problems with alcohol or depression.Every time I have been with Kurt Busch at dinner I have never seen him drink, Haas said. On race weekends when Im having a beer, he is having water. I never saw that personally, so I think he is a stable person — and fun person to be around. Those characterizations I dont believe are true.Haas said he doesnt have a backup driver lined up in case Busch is suspended.We will have to address that if we need to. At the moment we are optimistic and were staying with that, Haas said.Busch said he has leaned on his friends at Stewart-Haas Racing to get through the off-track incident, including teammate and co-owner Tony Stewart.Its nice to know that people can see through and understand the actual specifics and truth the environment, Busch said.___Associated Press Writer Randall Chase contributed to this report. 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