MINNEAPOLIS >> The Timberwolves’ home crowd was going wild.DeAndre Jordan had just left a free throw short, and one more miss meant free frozen yogurt for everyone with a ticket. They knew the math, that Jordan had been missing roughly 60 percent of his free throws this year.And as the Clippers star center stepped to the line with just more than 2 minutes left in the fourth quarter Saturday night, the people howling could probably taste the cold treat covered with sprinkles, chocolate chips and maraschino cherry.All Jordan had to do was miss a free throw, something he’s done 1,368 times in his career. “Sometimes, I’m in a giving mood,” Jordan said with a grin. “Tonight, I was not.”Jordan was intentionally fouled eight times in the fourth quarter, denying the Minnesota fans a confusing snack by going 10-of-16 from the line.“I don’t get the promotion. Ice cream in L.A.? I get that,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers joked. “I think it should be hot chocolate or something here.”The Clippers aren’t joking, though, when they say they’re seeing signs of optimism from Jordan at the free-throw line, a place where he’s struggled his entire NBA career.“I’m confident up there,” Jordan said. “I’ve got a routine. I’ve got everything I need. I’m just going to go up there and just shoot.” How a 42.2 percent free-throw shooter would be “confident” at the line might be a bit confusing. But, this season, Jordan and his teammates have noticed an important step in his journey to 15-foot competence – his misses are the right kind of misses.“They’ve looked good,” Blake Griffin said. “They’ve look really good, even the ones he missed (Friday), the ones he missed tonight.”The good misses are part of a multi-year project Jordan and assistant coach Armond Hill have undertaken.“They’re all straight,” Jordan said. “I’m shooting them the same way. I’m not changing my routine. I’m consistent when I’m at the line now.”In his last two games, games where opposing coaches resorted to intentionally fouling Jordan, he’s made 16-of-28 from the line, upping his season percentage from 34.5 percent to 45.6 percent.“You see it in spurts,” he said. “…Tonight was a good night. Last night was OK.”Jordan’s willingness to step to the line in big situations, whether at the end of competitive scrimmage in practice, during a close fourth quarter in Oklahoma City or with frozen yogurt on the line is certainly notable.Griffin, who himself rebuilt his free-throw shooting to hit more than 70 percent in four-straight seasons, said mindset is a massive step in improving from the line.“You’re not worried about anything else. You’re not trying not to get fouled. You’re going through contact, trying to get and-1’s,” he said. “You’re not shying away from the line. I don’t ever shy away from the line anymore. It just gives you so much confidence, puts you at ease.”And now, when Jordan gets fouled, the process involves some deep breaths at the line, a reliance on his improved mechanics and a little peace of mind. From there, whatever happens happens.“I love it. He wants to shoot them,” Rivers said. “That’s a change.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error
SANTA ANITA SINGLE TICKET PICK SIX JACKPOT CARRYOVER OF $601,540 INTO FRIDAY; FIRST POST TIME FOR AN 11-RACE CARD IS AT 12 NOON SANTA ANITA OPEN FOR SIMULCAST WAGERING WITH FREE PARKING & ADMISSION WEDNESDAY & THURSDAY ARCADIA, Calif. (March 3, 2019)–With an 11-race card on tap, a 20 cent Single Ticket Pick Six Jackpot carryover of $601,540 will await racegoers this Friday at Santa Anita Park.First post time on Friday has been set for 12 noon, with approximate post time for race six, which is leg one in the Rainbow Six, is at 2:30 p.m. PT.Today’s total Rainbow Six pool of $778,368 was bolstered by an influx of $229,330 in “new” money, resulting in a 822 consolation tickets with six winners, which were each worth $149.00.Entries were taken today for Friday and are available now at santaanita.com.Santa Anita will be open for simulcast wagering on Wednesday and Thursday, with free parking and admission to the Grandstand Paddock Room. For additional information, please call (626) 574-RACE.