Lakers officially bring Anthony Davis into the fold

Anthony Davis, left, and LeBron James during the 2019 NBA Summer League at the Thomas & Mack Center on July 6, 2019. (AFP)
Updated 07 July 2019

Lakers officially bring Anthony Davis into the fold

  • The signing took place on the first day NBA teams were allowed to officially sign free agents
  • Anthony Davis is a six-time NBA all-star who has averaged more than 23 points per game through seven seasons with New Orleans

LOS ANGELES: The Los Angeles Lakers made it official on Saturday, announcing they have signed forward Anthony Davis, who they hope will form a dynamic one-two punch with superstar LeBron James.
“Anthony Davis is arguably the most dominant all-around young player in today’s NBA,” said Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka. “Anthony represents everything we stand for, with his unwavering commitment to excellence as both a person and athlete.
“This is a historic moment for the Lakers franchise, and we couldn’t be more proud to have him.”
The Davis signing took place on the first day NBA teams were allowed to officially sign free agents to contracts that were already negotiated over the past week.
The Lakers reiterated in their statement that they have acquired Davis in a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans in exchange for Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram, the draft rights to De’Andre Hunter, two first-round picks, and cash.
As part of the trade, the Lakers also sent Isaac Bonga, Jemerrio Jones, Moritz Wagner and a second-round draft pick to the Washington Wizards, who in return, sent cash consideration to the Pelicans.
Davis is a six-time NBA all-star who has averaged more than 23 points per game through seven seasons with New Orleans, who drafted him with the first overall pick in 2012.
Davis also played alongside James in the USA’s 2012 Olympics gold-medal-winning roster.
The Lakers announced several other signings on Saturday, including deals with Quinn Cook, DeMarcus Cousins, and Danny Green.
A four-time all-star, Cousins has played in 565 career games for Sacramento, New Orleans, and Golden State, averaging 21.2 points and 10.9 rebounds.
The Lakers did not release any details about the deals but the US media reported that Cousins’ deal is for one year and worth $3.5 million.
The Miami Heat were also believed to be interested in Cousins but Davis, a former teammate of Cousins with the Pelicans, helped convince him to go to Los Angeles.
Green started 80 games for the NBA champion Toronto Raptors last season, averaging 10.3 points, 4.0 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game.
Cook was a member of the 2018 Golden State championship team.


Saudi Arabia’s showjumping star eyes path to Tokyo 2020 Olympics

Updated 19 August 2019

Saudi Arabia’s showjumping star eyes path to Tokyo 2020 Olympics

  • Dalma Malhas ‘honored’ to be part of national team
  • Equestrian star began riding aged four

LONDON: Saudi Arabia’s showjumping star Dalma Malhas is counting down to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics by competing in a series of crucial qualifying events.

Malhas, who has been riding since the age of four, told Arab News that she was honored to be part of the Saudi national team after “years of work and dedication.”

Next month she and her fellow showjumpers head to Morocco to take part in a series of qualifying events.

The 10th edition of the Morocco Royal Tour takes place in three cities — Tetouan, Rabat, and Eljadida —  on three consecutive weekends. The top two teams, based on their results, will qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Malhas wants to be at the prestigious sporting event in Japan. 

“The work that has been done in the past few years will manifest itself now and I’m enjoying what I’ve been working on ... I believe in destiny and hard work,” she told Arab News. “Anything could happen, but I’m hopeful and trying to focus on peak performance because it is important that, when it comes to the horse and myself, we want to be there, energetic and motivated.”

She was the first female athlete from the Kingdom to compete at an Olympic-level event, riding at the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in 2010 in Singapore and winning a bronze medal. She participated in the 14-18 age group, becoming only the third Saudi athlete to snag an Olympic medal.

She said it was easy to buy a horse that was already trained and compete with it. But the challenge for her was to get an inexperienced horse and train him from scratch.

“I dedicated time, effort and energy. I had a vision of how he could be and transformed him into a skilled and talented horse, and step-by-step I followed that. You build a strong partnership when you go through that process. It’s an affinity you can’t really buy. This is a very big part of horsemanship and one of my biggest achievements since the Youth Olympic Games. It’s priceless, having a combination and partnership like this.”

Malhas was born in 1992 in the US. Her mother, Arwa Mutabagani, is a prominent equestrian and has been a board member at the Saudi Equestrian Federation since 2008. She was also the first woman to be appointed to the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee.

Malhas has had a thoroughly international upbringing. At 12 she moved with her mother from Saudi Arabia to Rome to train with her under Italy’s former showjumping national coach, Duccio Bartalucci, spending a decade under his tutelage.

After studying and training in Italy she joined a two-year professional program at the Forsan Equestrian Center in Chantilly, France. She has been training with Olympic champion Roger Yves Bost since 2016. 

She started 2019 by participating in several tournaments, crisscrossing Europe and gradually moving up the leaderboard. 

She has won several awards to date, including Dubai’s Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Creative Sports Award, and can be regarded as a pioneer and role model.

Malhas said there were great opportunities for Saudi women in the fields of sports and equestrianism. She talked about the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 reform plan and how it empowered women. She also saw an opportunity to become more involved. 

“I want to give back too. I’ve been mostly focused on showjumping and training, so hopefully I’ll start giving back and contribute to society and motivate my peers in the country. I don’t mind though I’ve been enjoying the ride and after years of work I’m finally being rewarded in the best way possible.”