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Durant destroys Cleveland’s D in Game 1

One quarter was close, the other three were Golden State’s. Game 1 for Cali, 113-91

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LeBron James bit on a pump fake and got no help as Kevin Durant drove to the basket for one of his several uncontested dunks. Stephen Curry was left alone behind the 3-point line and made Cleveland pay time and again. The defensive woes that plagued the Cavaliers late in the regular season were glaring against the star-laden Golden Stat…

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LeBron James bit on a pump fake and got no help as Kevin Durant drove to the basket for one of his several uncontested dunks. Stephen Curry was left alone behind the 3-point line and made Cleveland pay time and again.The defensive woes that plagued the Cavaliers late in the regular season were glaring against the star-laden Golden State Warriors in a 113-91 loss in Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night.Durant had six dunks in the first half alone to match his most ever in a game, Curry hit six 3-pointers and the Cavaliers looked like the team that stumbled down the stretch in the second half of the season.”We’re just going to have to dig our feet in and be able to guard the basketball,” guard Kyrie Irving said. “So it’s more or less a heart thing, a prideful thing. Going into Game 2 we’ll be a lot more settled in, a lot better on the defensive end.”Cleveland went just 23-23 after Jan. 10 and was ranked in the bottom third statistically on defense all season. The lapses were mostly glossed over as the Cavs streaked through the Eastern Conference playoffs. Cleveland shut down Indiana’s Paul George, Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan and Boston’s Isaiah Thomas before he went down with a hip injury on the way to a 12-1 postseason record.The Cavaliers are going to have to make some adjustments to slow down the Warriors.When Cleveland stayed on Curry, Durant got easy dunks in transition.”That’s when they become very dangerous because those guys, they sprint down the lane, they sprint to the 3-point line, they put a lot of pressure on your defense,” James said. “But the ball is the number one thing. We got to stop the ball first and then fan out to the 3-point line if those guys go there.”Whe…
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Trump is considering firing special counsel Mueller, friend says

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WASHINGTON — A friend of the president says Donald Trump is considering “terminating” special counsel Robert Mueller. Newsmax CEO Chris Ruddy tells Judy Woodruff of “PBS NewsHour”: “I think he’s considering perhaps terminating the special counsel. I think he’s weighing that option.” The White House did not immediately respond to questions about Ruddy’s claims. Under current Justice Department regulations, suc…

WASHINGTON — A friend of the president says Donald Trump is considering “terminating” special counsel Robert Mueller.
Newsmax CEO Chris Ruddy tells Judy Woodruff of “PBS NewsHour”: “I think he’s considering perhaps terminating the special counsel. I think he’s weighing that option.”
The White House did not immediately respond to questions about Ruddy’s claims.
Under current Justice Department regulations, such a firing would have to be done by Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ deputy, Rod Rosenstein, not the president— though those regulations could theoretically be set aside.
Mueller is leading the investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election and potential ties between Moscow and Trump’s presidential campaign. Sessions has recused himself from the investigation.

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Puerto Rico votes for statehood, opponents boycott the vote

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SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Puerto Rico’s governor announced that the U.S. territory overwhelmingly chose statehood on Sunday in a nonbinding referendum held amid a deep economic crisis that has sparked an exodus of islanders to the U.S. mainland. Nearly half a million votes were cast for statehood, about 7,600 for free association/independence and nearly 6,700 for the current territoria…

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SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Puerto Rico’s governor announced that the U.S. territory overwhelmingly chose statehood on Sunday in a nonbinding referendum held amid a deep economic crisis that has sparked an exodus of islanders to the U.S. mainland.
Nearly half a million votes were cast for statehood, about 7,600 for free association/independence and nearly 6,700 for the current territorial status, according to preliminary results. Voter turnout was just 23 percent, leading opponents to question the validity of a vote that several political parties had urged their supporters to boycott.
And the U.S. Congress has final say in any changes to Puerto Rico’s political status.
But that didn’t stop Gov. Pedro Rossello from vowing to push ahead with his administration’s quest to make the island the 51st U.S. state and declaring that “Puerto Rico voted for statehood.” He said he would create a commission to ensure that Congress validate the referendum’s results.
“In any democracy, the expressed will of the majority that participates in the electoral processes always prevails,” Rossello said. “It would be highly contradictory for Washington to demand democracy in other parts of the world, and not respond to the legitimate right to self-determination that was exercised today in the American territory of Puerto Rico.”
It was the lowest level of participation in any election in Puerto Rico since 1967, according to Carlos Vargas Ramos, an associate with the Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College in New York. He also said that even among voters who supported statehood, turnout was lower this year compared with the last referendum in 2012.
“Supporters of statehood did not seem enthusiastic about this plebiscite as they were five years ago,” he said.
Puerto Rico’s main opposition party rejected the pro-statehood result.
“The scant participation … sends a clear message,” said Anibal Jose Torres, a party member. “The people rejected it by boycotting an inconsequential event.”
The referendum coincides with the 100th anniversary of the United States granting U.S. citizenship to Puerto Ricans, though they are barred from voting in presidential elections and have only one congressional representative with limited voting powers.
Among those hoping Puerto Rico will become a state is Jose Alvarez, a 61-year-old businessman.
“Now is the moment to do it,” he said. “We’ve spent a lot of years working on a socioeconomic model that has not necessarily given us the answer.”
Many believe the island’s territorial status has contributed to its 10-year economic recession, which has prompted nearly half a million Puerto Ricans to flee to the U.S. mainland and was largely sparked by decades of heavy borrowing and…
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US & World

Cyptic Trump counterpunches Comey, says ‘100 percent’ willing to testify, no word on tapes

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WASHINGTON — Punching back a day after his fired FBI director’s damaging testimony, President Donald Trump on Friday accused James Comey of lying to Congress and said he was “100 percent” willing to testify under oath about their conversations. Trump cryptically refused to say whether those private exchanges were taped — a matter at the heart of the conflicting accounts o…

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WASHINGTON — Punching back a day after his fired FBI director’s damaging testimony, President Donald Trump on Friday accused James Comey of lying to Congress and said he was “100 percent” willing to testify under oath about their conversations.
Trump cryptically refused to say whether those private exchanges were taped — a matter at the heart of the conflicting accounts of what passed between them at a time when Comey was leading an FBI investigation into Russia’s interference in the presidential election and its ties to the Trump campaign.
He asserted that nothing in Comey’s testimony to the Senate pointed to collusion with Russia or obstruction of justice. “Yesterday showed no collusion, no obstruction,” Trump said.
He further denied ever asking Comey for his “loyalty,” contradicting Comey’s detailed sworn testimony about a private dinner the two men had in the White House.
“No I didn’t say that,” Trump stated abruptly, taking questions at a joint press conference with Romanian President Klaus Iohannis in the Rose Garden. Asked if he would make that denial under oath, he said, “100 percent.”
Trump’s aides have dodged questions about whether conversations relevant to the Russia investigation have been recorded, and so did the president, in series of teases.
“Well, I’ll tell you about that maybe sometime in the very near future,” Trump said. Pressed on the issue, he insisted he wasn’t “hinting anything,” before adding, “Oh you’re going to be very disappointed when you hear the answer, don’t worry.”
The House intelligence committee sent a letter Friday asking White House counsel Don McGahn whether any tape recordings or memos of Comey’s conversations with the president exist now or had existed in the past. The committee also sent a letter to Comey asking for any notes or memos in his possession about the discussions he had with Trump before being abruptly fired last month. The committee is seeking the materials by June 23.
Comey told the Senate intelligence committee Thursday about several one-on-one interactions with the president, during which he said Trump pressed him to show “loyalty,” to back off on the FBI investigation of his former national security adviser, Michael Flynn, and to disclose that Trump himself was not under investigation.
Comey said he refused on all points, told senators of the detailed memos he had written after his conversations with Trump and said he hoped those conversations were taped because he is confident of their veracity.
Standing with the president of Romania, a NATO partner, Trump at last confirmed his commitment to the …
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Local and independent journalism is under threat in the West and you can change that.  With corporate raiders slashing newsrooms across the West, the PULP is one of the "Last Locals" in Colorado to produce original, compelling journalism missing in today's profit hungry world. But that costs money, time and hard work. We don't believe in spamming you with ads that's why we need your help.

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One more thing...

Local and independent journalism is under threat in the West and you can change that.  With corporate raiders slashing newsrooms across the West, the PULP is one of the "Last Locals" in Colorado to produce original, compelling journalism missing in today's profit hungry world. But that costs money, time and hard work. We don't believe in spamming you with ads and that's why we need your help.

For every contribution, we put 100% back into producing original and amazing journalism. That's a promise only a local and independent newsroom can promise. Take heart because you will fuel stories just like this one and the future of journalism.

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