13.04.2015

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We read about their sumptuous lifestyles, latest loves and multimillion-dollar contracts in the celebrity pages and on gossip websites. But Jiang Yilei, 29, has become a star virtually overnight in China - not from being snared by a big film studio, but thanks to the internet and social networking sites. Jiang, widely known as Papi Jiang, previously was an unknown graduate student at the Central Academy of Drama.
She has attracted some 13.1 million followers on the Chinese microblogging site Sina Weibo over the past few months. Trying to make a name for oneself on the internet, either in China or elsewhere, is not exactly new.
Online celebrities in China have far more opportunities than their overseas counterparts because of the sheer scale and diversity of Chinese sites in their many manifestations, whether it be e-commerce, social media or something else.
When Chinese people used to think about online celebrity, by and large they pictured porcelain-faced young women, but now the idea has been stretched to take in any number of people who have a huge following on the internet, according to Da Shan, founder of Today's Online Celebrity, a WeChat public account devoted to analyzing China's online celebrity economy. Today's Online Celebrity recently published a report about the potential commercial value of such celebrities, measured by number of followers, and the influence and business model of the platforms on which they are active. The most eye-catching group of online celebrities - who have a whole sales and production team for goods they hawk to online fans as part of their business model - are those closely connected with China's e-commerce companies, such as Alibaba's Taobao. In this case, you can forget the idea that a Little Miss Nobody working alone, crouched over an old computer in a shed in a village, is behind all this. The woman that is the face of the operation usually also deals with an incubator or agencies that connect her with manufacturers, suppliers and advertising agencies and guide her in maintaining, or if need be changing, her image so as to keep followers loyal, says Yang Ping, general manager of an incubator of online celebrities in Hangzhou. Fang Qihe, a blogger and Taobao shop owner in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, is one of those who puts on stylish garb, takes photos of herself and posts them online.
In the apparel industry in China, online celebrities are responsible for sales worth 100 billion yuan a year, according to Guotai Junan Securities. Another large group of online celebrities consists of those who perform on live streaming sites. The Ministry of Culture says about 200 million people in China use online live streaming, and that at the busiest times 3,000 to 4,000 rooms are streaming simultaneously, with a combined viewership of between 2 million and 3 million. Others who are cashing in on online fame include many who do not show their face, but provide entertainment or information in the form of novels and other written content, astrological advice, cartoons or stock market analyses.
The many ways online stars can cash in show that the online celebrity economy has begun to run in a more cohesive, organized and professional way, the emerging online celebrity incubators and agencies say. Moreover, as online celebrity becomes more mainstream, those who have gained fame in more conventional ways are increasingly turning to social media to keep in contact with their fans, and they, too, are beginning to develop online personalities. More than 10 million viewers watched a live-streamed online games contest featuring musician, record producer, director and actor Jay Chou, who is famous throughout Asia, and controversial figure Wang Sicong, known for buying his dog two gold Apple Watches. Given the size, reach and pace of change in the industry, authorities overseeing it are struggling to keep up.
The Ministry of Culture has ordered more than 12 live streaming sites to make changes to comply with regulations.
The desire by online celebrities to milk their fame to the fullest may be because a cyberstar's shelf life seems to be relatively short. Yang Ping, general manager of a Hangzhou incubator, says that as competition between online celebrities heats up, the critical thing will continue to be the quality of content. Da says: "Online celebrities are usually highly attractive physically, but that's not enough. Even for Papi Jiang - as commenters note that "aesthetic fatigue" for her videos is starting to creep in - finding a workable business model and sustainable popularity will still remain a question, he says. Sitting at a computer, turning on the camera and clicking on the microphone, 22-year-old Xia Keke smiles, chats, sings and sometimes stands up and dances inside a pink room filled with dolls. Born into a conventional, white-collar family in Jinan, Shandong province - her mother is a judge and her father an engineer - Xia says she has been learning singing and dancing since childhood. After high school, she became a flight attendant, but her hobby of playing online games made her want to do live broadcasts of such games. Xia says that she likes to project her own personality on live broadcasts, and she also makes fun of herself and cracks jokes, to get closer to her audience.
She says although many people think the career of a live online broadcast host must be very short, she disagrees and has just signed a four-year contract. Xia recently had to have surgery to treat a vocal cord tumor, and had to stop broadcasting for more than a month. A Tencent report of online celebrities says many incubators are now in operation, and the number is growing quickly. Although no specific figures are available yet about how many incubators there are in China, Yang Ping, general manager of Hangzhou Online Celebrities E-Commerce Co, says growth of online celebrity incubators in the past few months has been explosive, and she can feel the competition getting fiercer.
Yang set up the incubator in June and has signed six online celebrities, most of whom are young, attractive women.
Ruhan E-commerce Ltd, one of the biggest incubators, in July 2014 signed its first online celebrity - the model Zhang Dayi - and helped Zhang manage her first Taobao online shop.
A report by Guotai Junan Securities shows that, among Ruhan's online celebrities, about 50 have online shops, and by the end of 2016 the number of shops will reach more than 100.
Feng Min, founder of Ruhan, says three qualifications are needed for online celebrities: being a leader or specializing in one area, having the desire and passion to share with others, and knowing how to interact well with clients and followers. He says there are three primary services that incubators provide to celebrities: first, discovering, researching and cultivating people who have expertise in a certain area, and to help them showcase the best of their expertise and talent to make them famous, and help them stay that way. Yang says before she started the incubator, she worked in the international clothing trade and in factories. She also is in contact with potential online celebrities overseas, and is trying to cultivate a crop from the US, Thailand, Japan and South Korea. The drought-tolerant crop could replace teff as an ingredient in injera, the traditional Ethiopian dish that is eaten daily in virtually every home. Test plantings of the millet in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People's Region - one of the nine ethnic regions of Ethiopia - have so far proved to be successful, the academy says.
Peng Dajun, deputy general manager of CGCOC, which is a subsidiary of a large, state-owned Chinese enterprise, says foxtail millet has an annual output of more than 7 metric tons a hectare - about 5 tons more than teff.
Several crops can be fermented to make injera, but he says dishes made using foxtail millet taste just like those including teff. Last year, Ethiopia was hit by its worst drought in decades, leaving 8.2 million people in need of emergency food aid, according to media reports.
Peng says if foxtail millet had been planted widely in Ethiopia, the famine may have been avoided due to its strong drought tolerance. Zhao Zhihai, chief agronomist at the academy, says cooperation with CGCOC can be complementary. Peng adds that CGCOC can mobilize more funds than research institutes and have a better understanding of government policies in Africa. The two partners have established a millet research center in Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital, where Peng aims to make a breakthrough in solving Africa's food security issues. Zhao adds that they are also working on new species and advising enterprises on how to build up a complete industry chain for the crops they develop. David Gann says developing smart cities in China is of great significance as rural to urban migration continues in the country. The professor of innovation and technology management at Imperial College London says the growth of new cities in China, coupled with the increasing density of population, requires Chinese cities to be "smart", such as making data more available, as in the Smart London plan. David Gann says the growth of new cities in China, coupled with the increasing density of population, requires Chinese cities to be "smart".
Given that urban dwellers can be more vulnerable to risks such as contagious diseases and severe pollution, Gann says the livability of densely packed cities requires good physical and data infrastructure. According to Gann, "the smart city is about using digital technology to harness data to improve the way in which the city is operating, but it could mean different things in different places".
He says some of the things that London does can be a bit different from what cities in China do. Gann, the chairman of the Smart London board, says the concept of Smart London originally stemmed from the successful management of the London 2012 Summer Olympics, where a swath of data was used to support the delivery of the Games.
London was able to provide support digitally for people's experience during the Games in 2012, and as a direct result the decision was taken to create a Smart London board and Gann was asked to be chairman by then-London mayor Boris Johnson. Gann thinks it was his expertise in digital technology, along with its application and use in business and government, plus Imperial College's top reputation in science and technology in Europe, that led to his selection for the job. To make the capital function better, Gann says London has put data utilization at its core to help the city manage its transport, social, economic and environmental systems. Thanks to contributions from a mix of academics, businesspeople and administrators, the Smart London plan was published in December 2013, to use the creative power of data and technology to improve the lives of Londoners, the experience of visitors, and the conditions for doing business.
Since the birth of the plan, there have been huge improvements in some areas, says Gann, adding that one of the key contributors is the London Datastore, a data-sharing portal. A report published in March, entitled The Future of Smart, documented the board's progress in advising, developing and promoting the use of digital infrastructure and data in London. Because the London Datastore has been such a powerful piece of infrastructure and is a web portal into information about how London operates, he believes it is liberating, and one of his strong recommendations for China is to make data open.
Also, because the use of scientists and the links between academics, business and government have worked well in London, Gann says China could benefit by encouraging more collaborative efforts from various parties, including researchers, the government and industry. China could do more with startup entrepreneurs, says Gann, who has lots of experience mentoring startups, supporting rapidly growing tech businesses and developing long-term strategic partnerships with multinational technology corporations. Gann says companies like Huawei, which is also a member of the Smart London Board, can play an important role in helping develop smart cities in China.
He says he thinks there are plenty of avenues for Huawei to continue to develop in those areas but also probably in developing new services and understanding how infrastructure is used to optimize its use.
One of the challenges for Huawei, Gann says, is determining what sort of platform would really deliver in the long term.
COVERED IN DULL OLIVE GREEN SYNTHETIC RAFFIA, BOUND BY GRAY STRINGS, the almost square book seems modestly unadorned. The book, made by the bookshop owner, Lyu Chonghua, designed by Li Jin and published by Guangxi Fine Arts Publishing House, won the Gold Medal in the Most Beautiful Book in the World competition in Leipzig, Germany, in February. The 200-square-meter shop, beside the gate of the academy, is jam packed with 20,000 books and other items related to the arts, gorgeous calligraphy model books, plaster statues and row upon row of neatly stored brushes.
Li, 44, looks smart and elegant, wearing a dark cotton gown, her long black hair in a bun held together by a hairpin. She was a classmate of Lyu at the Xi'an Academy of Fine Arts, where the pair studied graphic design, more than 20 years ago.
Publishers use it to protect books while they are being transported because such wrapping is cheap but durable.
Lyu dipped into his own savings to produce the book, spending more than 200,000 yuan ($30,600) on the first and second print runs of 7,500 copies, which quickly sold out after the book won the award in Leipzig, paving the way for a third printing, which is due out soon. His mother, Ma Xiulian, who founded the family book business, rejected his plans for what eventually became an award winner as a waste of money. In January 2010 at the Beijing Book Fair Lyu met Zhang Dong, then vice editor-in-chief of Guangxi Fine Arts Publishing House. So he drew a caricature of himself as a signature in the bottom right corner of each order.
On average, he drew three to four orders a day and over the next 10 years, before fax was largely supplanted by e-mail, he built up a stack of more than 10,000 orders. After returning to Xi'an from the Beijing Book Fair in 2010, Lyu started preparing the book. However, beyond that cheery optimism for the family business, Lyu is well acquainted with the tough times the book industry is going through and appreciates that in fact the family business may be much closer to its end than its beginning.
The family started the book business in 1982 soon after Ma Xiulian arrived in Xi'an with her two sons, Lyu and his older brother Lyu Qinbing, to be with her husband, Lyu Anwei, who was a lowly paid teacher of scenography at the Xi'an Academy of Fine Arts.
At first they sold books about the arts, with their wares spread out on the ground, around universities, and business was brisk. In 1984 they sold 250 of the 5,000 sets of the first print of the Complete Collection of Shakespeare and 600 of the 4,900 copies of the first print of Sigmund Freud's A General Introduction to Psychoanalysis. The following year the family rented a shop of less than 20 square meters next to the Xi'an Conservatory of Music and later moved to its current location in Jixiangcun, where the poet Li Bai of the Tang Dynasty (AD 618-907) is said to have once lived, and it expanded to the current size. After leaving high school in 1991, Lyu joined in running the business and in 1996, after he graduated from the Xi'an Academy of Fine Arts, Li, by then 25, decided to take over the business from his father. With its intimate acquaintance with the arts the family has the kind of credentials that make it a natural for running the business they have, Lyu's father and his wife Liang Bing both having studied oil painting, and Lyu himself having studied graphic design. The annual rent is 450,000 yuan, which means the shop needs takings of more than 1,200 yuan a day just to pay the rent. As with many other bookshops in China, Fangyuan started to feel the pinch when e-commerce began to take off in the country, but the most immediate cause for the Xi'an store's woes comes down to bricks and mortar rather than the ether of cyberspace. There is no doubt, either, that e-books have eaten into the profits of those who sell printed books.
You can look at pictures of any place on Earth on your computer, he says, but that is totally different to seeing the world for yourself. In late June 2010 Shaanxi Library hosted an exhibition called The Most Beautiful Books from Germany. Li, teaching book design at the university, took a ruler, a notebook and a pen to study the books.
Later in summer, after Ma left home to visit her mother, she needed to return home to look after her oldest son, who was ill. The shop had had 10,000 orders, many of them similar, and including all would have made the book tedious, so they picked more than 2,000 and put the most representative ones in the main part of the book and the others were made into four flip books on the left side. In order to include more material, those Li believes are minor stories, they printed more private information on the left-hand pages that are closed at the front by the fold.
They used relatively thin paper so that the content on the left-hand pages appears on the front, like hazy memories. The Leipzig judges said the printed left-hand pages "serve up the additional content like an unopened fruit. The extraordinary exploits of adventurer William Mesny are recounted in a new biography that fizzes with lively characters and provides a valuable insight into life during the last decades of the Qing Dynasty.
One morning in 1998, David Leffman awoke to find himself with a desert-dry throat, a thumping hangover and a notebook littered with jottings about an uprising in the 1860s that resulted in the deaths of 3 million people.
Although the hangover eventually subsided, the scribbled notes Leffman had taken during a three-day "Sisters Meal", courtesy of the Miao ethnic group in the southwestern province of Guizhou, were so intriguing he couldn't get them out of his mind. That weekend signaled the start of a 15-year obsession with William Mesny, a British adventurer who arrived in China as a penniless sailor in 1860 and rose to the rank of general in the Imperial Army of the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911), before dying as he had arrived, almost broke, in Shanghai in 1919. The upshot of that decade and a half of travel and research is Leffman's recently published biography of Mesny, The Mercenary Mandarin: How a British Adventurer Became a General in Qing-Dynasty China, a story packed with stirring tales of derring-do and larger-than-life characters, deftly interwoven with the events that drove the times. Mesny, a native of Jersey in the Channel Islands, led a full and dangerous life in China, plying many trades - gunrunner, jailer, newspaper columnist, government official, soldier, artillery expert, bridge designer, author and historian, to name just a few - before donning his general's uniform. He spoke fluent Chinese, advocated the modernization of all areas of society and, unusually for a Westerner at the time, had several close Chinese friends and seems to have been genuinely untainted by notions of superiority.
Indeed, both Mesny and his brother John, an officer in the Chinese customs, married Chinese women - William twice, at different times, of course - and raised families with them.
His life and travels were so remarkable, and well-publicized at the time, that it's surprising to learn that The Mercenary Mandarin is the first full biography of Mesny, although Leffman expresses great admiration for Keith Stevens' 100-page A Jersey Adventurer in China, published by the Hong Kong Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society in 1992.
In Leffman's hands, Mesny emerges as a Zelig-like character; someone who was always - at least in his own accounts of events - in the thick of the action, whenever and wherever it occurred. On the positive side he was ingenious, industrious, generous, resourceful, courageous and honest. Sadly for Mesny, those attributes were often overshadowed by less admirable qualities, such as impulsiveness, a desire to stand on his dignity and an almost childlike naivety. The first official reference to Mesny comes in 1860 in an Australian newspaper report relating how the 18-year-old sailor was fined for an unprovoked attack that left the bosun of his ship nursing several bruised ribs. That first visit, made as the country moved forward with the reform and opening-up policy, was hard work because Leffman spoke no Chinese and only had a vague plan of action.
Following his brother's arrival in Beijing, the two set out to visit the capital's major tourist sites.
The brothers' constant presence obviously perplexed Michael, who paid Leffman "a huge compliment by complaining loudly to his entourage of photographers that I didn't look like a Wham fan".
A few years later, as a fledgling author for the Rough Guides travel series, he used his photojournalism experience in China to successfully lobby the editors to send him to write about the southwest of the country. In addition to China, Leffman, who lived in Queensland for 20 years and holds dual British-Australian nationality, has written guidebooks about many countries and regions, including Iceland, Australia, Indonesia, Hong Kong and Macao, and has even ghosted a cookbook for a Chinese author. He estimates that he has visited China more than 15 times since that first trip, often in the company of his wife, and spending about three years in total, traveling, observing, learning and writing about a country that has fascinated him during the 30 years since he and I first met. Usually, each visit lasted six months, occasionally broken into two blocks, but the longest was nine months. To ensure that they would be able to communicate with their interviewees, Leffman and his wife signed up for intensive Chinese courses; first at London University's School of Oriental and African Studies and later at Sichuan University in Chengdu.
Although it took many years to research and recount Mesny's life, including retracing his steps as far as possible to visit cities, battlefields and other places of interest, Leffman rarely felt overwhelmed or despaired that he might not finish writing The Mercenary Mandarin.
That affection for Guizhou, and indeed most things Chinese, is highlighted in The Mercenary Mandarin by the use of Mesny's own words, culled from thousands of items, including newspaper reports and articles, published collectively as Mesny's Chinese Miscellany. At four volumes and running to a mammoth 2,000 pages and about 1 million words, the Miscellany contains Mesny's thoughts on just about anything and everything connected with life in China: politics, food, social mores, ailments and treatments, the standing of the army, the price of rice and, increasingly, his own perilous financial situation.
Everything, it seems, was grist to his mill, and although Mesny rewrote previously published articles to bring his own role to the fore, the collection remains a valuable and fascinating window into life in China during the last decades of the Qing Dynasty. His own odyssey allowed Leffman to retrace Mesny's seemingly endless treks, visiting the places he fought or lived, and interviewing direct descendents of many of his friends and colleagues. He also set great store in the Miscellany as a source of information about his subject's opinions of the people and events he encountered during nearly 60 years in the country.
As Leffman points out in the introduction to The Mercenary Mandarin, the Miscellany, written in the flowery English of the time, is an extraordinary piece of work, given that Mesny left school at age 8 and his English was initially poor. The "Slash Generation" are leading double lives as they experience the thrill of different identities.
At their normal workplace they are, say, a teacher from 9 to 5, from 6 to 7 they may be an online flower arranger and from 8 to 10 they could be a film reviewer.
But it is important to note that money or monetary rewards, for the "Slash Generation" or the "Slashes", are not their driving force. Alboher pointed out that "slashing has also taken hold overseas" and some living on the other side of the planet are discovering how punctuated careers can integrate and satisfy multiple passions, talents and interests that a single career may be unable to match. Six jobs don't bother him, Cheng told China Daily, as they are "interconnected" by facilitating people-to-people exchanges between Taiwan and the Chinese mainland. In a maker-space in Beijing, Cheng worked as a project manager to help Taiwan entrepreneurs through consulting and financial investment. But there are only so many hours in a day and living a full professional life can have consequences in the private sphere.
Upon graduating from the University of the Arts, London, in 2011, Kang became a user interface designer of a government website in 2013 and a tutor in an art education training center that year.
Adding a slash to his career by necessity, not by choice, Kang said doing only what he likes does not pay the bills in a major city like Beijing. Art and design may seem as if they are from the same stable but actually they are incompatible with each other, Kang said. Kang is confident that he will make the breakthrough in the visual arts, but he is also aware that his company may demand that he becomes "slashless" to give them more of his energy.
Liu Xuezhi, vice-president of the Chinese Academy of Personnel Science said that the Slash Generation could set a trend as the Internet had made it possible for people to satisfy their creative yearnings.
From the employment perspective, Liu said of course there are companies looking for full-time specialists to focus on only one area, but there are also a number of bosses who want to hire members of the Slash Generation both for their creativity and because it can help "slash" costs. Students at Shanghai's Jinshajiang Road Primary School hone their skills, especially dribbling, tackling and shooting, every day in intense workouts after school under the guidance of Spanish coach Jose Luis Iglesias.
A rapidly developing tactical awareness is evident, as players get into position and run off the ball. Ray Sports is rolling out a program in cooperation with Shanghai's municipal education authority to help improve the city's junior soccer training program with European expertise offered by 10 foreign coaches it hired, including the 24-year-old Iglesias.
Having adapted to life in Shanghai, Iglesias now trains students from grade one to five for two and a half hours after school from Monday to Friday, while coaching the school team at regional tournaments on weekends. As China aims to develop into a soccer power, highlighted in a long-term plan announced earlier last month, an increasing number of youth promotion programs and junior camps, featuring foreign coaches, have been organized by governmental departments, social organizations and private companies. Inspired by President Xi Jinping, an avid soccer fan, the government approved a national plan in March aimed at transforming the country into a dominant soccer power in Asia by 2030 and a leading world competitor two decades later. One of the keystones of the plan is to encourage more children to participate in the game in a joint effort of cooperation between the Chinese Football Association and the Ministry of Education. Wang Dengfeng, director of the ministry's PE, health and art department, envisions a surge in student interest in the game as well as the training programs. In accordance with the national outline, the ministry, in cooperation with the CFA, has set a goal to increase the number of schools specializing in soccer from more than 8,000 to 20,000, encouraging more than 30 million primary and secondary school students to practice regularly and training 5,000 school soccer instructors by 2020.
A four-tier school league system is currently operated by the Ministry of Education with more than 100,000 inter-school matches played last year, involving 2.7 million students.
Still, the lack of training expertise as well as facilities have been a pressing issue, and this needs more investment from both local governments and the private sector, said youth training expert Jin Zhiyang. To raise soccer's profile in the country, 16 clubs from the Chinese Super League, the top-flight competition in the country, spent a staggering $373 million during the most recent transfer window to purchase high-profile overseas players for the 2016 season. In contrast, the average governmental funding for each school registered in the four-tier system is less than 10,000 yuan ($1,539) for all expenses, while more than 10,000 students currently have to share, on average, a playing area of half a soccer field, according to CFA. The lack of public funding has opened business opportunities for companies such as Ray Sports and Sport 8 International to introduce foreign resources. Sport 8, a Beijing-based company offering online-to-offline soccer education and training programs for local coaches, has been cooperating with Pan-China Sports, a sports infrastructure developer, to build and manage 300 soccer pitches in Beijing, according to Sport 8 co-founder Bai Qiang.
Featuring the advanced Dutch youth training know-how that has produced an abundant supply of stars, including Sneijder and his fellow countryman Arjen Robben, Sport 8's training program, which is conducted by a foreign training crew from the Netherlands, has reached out to more than 70 Chinese cities, instructing about 15,000 local PE teachers. The after-school training provided by private companies and NGOs will serve as a supplement to the governmental effort, said Bai. Students undergo training at the No 2 Experimental Primary School in Wenxian county, Henan province, in April. The professor of marketing and innovation at Britain's Warwick Business School says brands of the power and reach of Apple give companies breathing space to do research and development.
Wang, who was speaking at the Kerry Hotel in Beijing on one of her many annual visits to her native China, says the lack of global brands, not just in technology but in almost every sphere, was a real problem for the world's second-largest economy. She cites that there were no Chinese brands in the Interbrand top 100 best global brands survey in 2015. She believes the lack of brands is undermining the country's technological efforts and achievements even though it overtook the United States and Japan as the world's largest filer of patents in 2012. The major question though is how far China - once light years behind at the time of reform and opening up in the late 1970s - has to go in catching up with the West in terms of technology. Her father was branded a "landlord" and lost his job at the height of the "cultural revolution (1966-76)", which meant the family was sent to the remote southwest Chinese province of Yunnan to a labor camp for intellectuals. When the universities reopened in 1978 she was accepted by Xi'an University of Technology at just 16 to study engineering. She then went on to study management science at Tianjin University before being accepted on scholarship under a technology cooperation scheme between the British Council and the Chinese government to study in the UK. So in 1988, she arrived at Warwick University to study for a doctorate in marketing and has lived in the UK ever since. She went on to teach at John Moores University in Liverpool and after a spell at Sussex university in Brighton went back to Warwick University, where her specialization is a combination of marketing and innovation. Along with others such as Peter Williamson at Judge Business School at Cambridge University, she is pre-eminent in combining these two disciplines. Wang, who is engaging but with a steely determination, also specializes in Chinese marketing on the advice of Robin Wensley, the former dean of Warwick Business School. She says that it was a new subject in China because in the 1970s there wasn't even a word for it. Wang has been quite evangelical in trying to get across the message in China itself that brands and marketing are important.
She says when China first began to rapidly develop, many Chinese companies found their brands were killed almost at birth by Western companies. Wang, who has held a number of posts at Chinese universities, including Sun Yat-sen, Tongji and Tsinghua, says the problem many Chinese brands face today is the negative association attached with being from China. She, however, believes Chinese companies such as Alibaba, Tencent and Huawei have made huge strides.
Chinese infrastructure companies are also moving from markets such as Africa, where they are now well established, to Europe to be involved in major projects such as HS2.
Every morning, Lu Shaojie parks her car beside a gravestone shaded by trees on the slope of Cuiwei Mountain in western Beijing, before going to work as a tour guide at Fahai Temple, just a few hundred meters to the northeast.
A copperplate printing of Da Bao En Temple in Nanjing, made by missionary artists in the 19th century. Apart from that, the only fact known for sure about Li is that he was a prominent eunuch of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).
Ever since Zheng's story was spread more widely in the early 20th century, the mystique of the seafarer has been perpetuated partly by his being a eunuch of the Ming court. According to Zheng Zihai, a descendent of Zheng He, his ancestor was Li's colleague for nearly 30 years.
Whether the friendship was due to mutual fondness or political convenience remains unknown. In 1956, a gilt bronze miniature tower was unearthed in the underground chamber of the temple tower. And for those who have read about the evils of the Ming eunuchs, spending a few minutes inside the dark main hall of Fahai Temple, where the frescoes are housed, may open another window. During the reign of Qianlong (1735-95), it became customary for European nations to send clocks to the palace, either as gifts or on request.
Wang says he has passed on his skills, which are listed as national intangible cultural heritage, to his 24-year-old son.
Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal is facing speculation about his future with the team ahead of its FA Cup final against Crystal Palace. Manchester United will attempt to salvage something from its tumultuous season - and potentially keep manager Louis van Gaal in a job - in Saturday's FA Cup final against Crystal Palace.


After failing to qualify for the Champions League for the second time in three years, the Wembley showpiece represents United's last chance to make good on a campaign of stagnant soccer and simmering fan dissent. Van Gaal was booed as he addressed supporters following Tuesday's 3-1 home win over Bournemouth and although victory against Palace would give United its first significant piece of silverware since Alex Ferguson left in 2013, reports suggest that his days at Old Trafford are numbered regardless. While United has not won the FA Cup since 2004, when it beat Millwall 3-0 in Cardiff, victory on Saturday would see it equal Arsenal's tally of 12 successes in the competition - a record it once held outright. As well as giving Van Gaal a first trophy in English football, it would also enable Wayne Rooney, the captain, and Michael Carrick to claim the only top-level medals that have eluded them during their spells at the club. Van Gaal already has reason to thank the tournament, for it has provided several melodious moments this season amid the steady background hum of speculation about his future. Early victories over lower-league sides Sheffield United, Derby County and Shrewsbury Town came during a dismal run of three wins in 13 league games, when criticism of the Dutchman was at its fiercest. The quarterfinal against West Ham United brought both the relief of Anthony Martial's 83rd-minute equalizer in the first game at Old Trafford and the morale boost of an assured 2-1 victory in the replay.
Martial provided another moment to savor in last month's semifinal against Everton, driving into the box from the left in stoppage time to net a deliriously celebrated winner.
If Van Gaal is looking for positive omens, it will not have escaped his attention that the last under-fire United manager to go into an FA Cup final against Palace with his neck on the line was Ferguson. Prior to the 1990 final, Ferguson had gone three and a half years without a trophy, but following a gripping 3-3 draw, a solitary goal by left-back Lee Martin earned United a 1-0 victory in the replay. One of the players who traipsed from the pitch in Palace's unfamiliar black and yellow change strip was 28-year-old midfielder Alan Pardew, who is now the south London club's manager. Pardew etched his name in Palace folklore by netting an extra-time winner against Liverpool in the semifinals and 26 years later, he is seeking to steer the club to its first major trophy.
Following a strong start to the season, Palace won just two of their final 21 league games, which saw it finish 15th in the Premier League. But it has shown superb form in the cup, notably eliminating Southampton, Stoke City, Tottenham Hotspur and Watford, and now finds itself on the brink of a historic achievement. Aside from Wales midfielder Joe Ledley, who fractured his fibula in the 2-1 league win over Stoke two weeks ago, Pardew has a fully fit squad at his disposal. Bolasie grew up just a few miles from Wembley and could see the famous stadium glimmering in the distance from his parents' house in Hillingdon Borough.
So, at the end of a season in which Bolasie's father passed away, playing the biggest match of his career so close to home has given the Congo international a burning desire to deliver the performance of a lifetime. Bolasie's father followed the Eagles all over the country to watch his son in action and his death in August inevitably proved hard for the Palace star to take.
After flying to Congo for several days, Bolasie returned to action in a Premier League match at Chelsea and he was moved almost to tears when he saw that Palace had arranged for the players to wear black armbands in recognition of his father's passing. Bolasie has been determined to repay that support by shining for Palace and his impressive campaign reached a new high when he headed in the opening goal in their FA Cup semifinal against Watford last month. That 2-1 victory was a milestone moment for Bolasie as he finally fulfilled his ambition of playing at Wembley. For many years, while he languished in football's lower divisions with Bristol City and Palace, it seemed those glances out of the windows of his old home were as close as he would get to his field of dreams. He has taken to wearing a pair of boots he designed himself that are emblazoned with a photo of Wembley's famous arch and other pictures charting his winding career path from Hillingdon to the national stadium.
Despite the trappings of his status as a Premier League footballer, Bolasie remains down-to-earth. He often pops home for a meal prepared by his mother, Yolande, and he recently tweeted a picture of himself in a local playground with the caption "Where it all began". As if he needed any additional motivation in Saturday's clash with Manchester United, the 26-year-old would dearly love to bring home an FA Cup winners' medal on the day his mother turns 54. Xia, whose Chinese name is Xia Jiantong, purchased Villa on Wednesday for a reported $87 million and is looking to hire a new manager quickly before bringing in a host of players in a bid to transform the troubled club's fortunes.
Villa was relegated for the first time in 29 years this season amid acrimonious fan protests against its underperforming players and previous owner Randy Lerner. Tim Sherwood and Remi Garde were both sacked after disappointing spells as Villa's manager this season and former Leicester boss Nigel Pearson and ex-Chelsea chief Roberto di Matteo are reportedly the leading contenders to take charge. Xia knows getting the managerial appointment right is essential if Villa is to fulfil his ambition of winning promotion from the Championship next term and eventually becoming one of the world's major clubs. Xia is hopeful Villa fans will get behind him now Lerner has gone and the 39-year-old businessman called on them to concentrate on a brighter future rather than dwelling on past failures.
LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers notched a triple-double against the Toronto Raptors in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals of the NBA playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena on Thursday in Cleveland, Ohio. Overshadowed as Golden State shot down history during the regular season, the Cavaliers are making this postseason their own.
LeBron James recorded a triple-double and Cleveland improved to 10-0 in the playoffs with a 108-89 victory over the Toronto Raptors on Thursday night in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals. James had 23 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists as the Cavs became the fourth team to start the postseason with 10 straight wins, joining the Los Angeles Lakers (1989, 2001) and San Antonio Spurs (2012). Kyrie Irving scored 26 and Kevin Love 19 for Cleveland, which swept Detroit and Atlanta and has beaten Toronto by a combined 50 points in two games. Game 3 is Saturday in Toronto, where Raptors All-Star guard Kyle Lowry can only hope the rims at Air Canada Centre are kinder than the ones in Quicken Loans Arena. Lowry scored 10 points and is shooting 8 of 28 from the field, including 1 of 15 on 3-pointers. James moved past Shaquille O'Neal into fourth place on the career postseason scoring list and posted his 15th playoff triple-double, securing it by running down rebound No. By then, the Cavs were up 20 and coasting to another easy win in their so-far-spotless spring. Earlier in the day, James was asked if the Cavs might need a loss to get them ready for the finals. And the Cavs are playing like it under coach Tyronn Lue, also a perfect 10 in the playoffs. Missing center Jonas Valanciunas because of a sprained right ankle, Casey tweaked his lineup by starting forward Luis Scola over Patrick Patterson.
But Cleveland closed the first half with a 16-2 burst, capped by a three-point play from James, who was already flirting with a triple-double when he headed to the locker room. Casey felt the need to speak with his players after their Game 7 win over Miami about not being satisfied in what's already been the deepest postseason run in franchise history.
Casey and his coaching staff wanted to meet across the hallway from Toronto's locker room following the game, but couldn't get access because the door was locked. Cavs guard Matthew Dellavedova tweaked his ankle in the second half, but Lue said he should be OK.
Raptors: Scola's start was a surprise considering he played just five minutes in the entire Miami series. Cavaliers: Now that James has passed O'Neal, next on the career postseason scoring list are Kobe Bryant (5,640), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (5,762) and Michael Jordan (5,987). The Orlando Magic moved quickly to fill their coaching vacancy, agreeing to a deal with Frank Vogel just a week after the position suddenly became available. Vogel and Magic officials met during the day Thursday and reached a deal, which will not be final until Friday afternoon, said a person with knowledge of the negotiations.
During a news conference last Thursday, team CEO Alex Martins and general manager Rob Hennigan both said they wanted a coach who has strong defensive principles and can connect with the players. Curry produced a virtuoso third quarter performance to inspire the Warriors to a 118-91 victory over the Thunder on Wednesday as Golden State leveled the best-of-seven series at 1-1. However Curry finished the game with a question mark over his fitness after an incident in the first quarter where he dove headfirst into the crowd as he chased a loose ball. The fall left Curry with visible swelling on his elbow - but the Warriors star is adamant he will be fit to face the Thunder in Oklahoma City on Monday.
Asked if he expected to have the swelling drained, Curry replied: "Something I'll have to pay attention to the next 48 hours until we leave for OKC. Curry, who reeled off 15 straight points in a devastating burst of scoring in the third quarter on Wednesday that effectively settled the game, said he is preparing for another bruising encounter in Game 3. South Korea's Wang Jeung-hun, 20, completed back-to-back wins with a come-from-behind one-shot triumph in the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open on Sunday, a week after breaking through in Morocco. The slender Wang edged Siddikur Rahman of Bangladesh on the last hole to win the tournament, sanctioned by the Asian, European and Sunshine Tours. Prior to Wang's heroics, compatriot and close friend Lee Soo-min, 22, and China's Li Haotong, 20, won European Tour events in China to fuel optimism about the future of the Asian Tour. South Korean-born Australian Unho Park, who sprayed champagne on Wang after the last putt dropped, said the Asian Tour is on the right track in unearthing international-class players. Wang's win was worth $189,841, which vaulted him to second place on the latest Asian Tour's Order of Merit at $470,338 - some $166,000 behind leader Marcus Fraser of Australia. Filipino Miguel Tabuena, who is 21, is third on the Asian Tour rankings with $336,258 while Lee sits fourth at just over $319,000. In addition to the victories by Lee and Li in China, Asian golfers carved out a small slice of history by notching an unprecedented four straight wins on the European Tour.
Although disappointed that he failed to land a third Asian Tour victory in Mauritius, Siddikur has moved back into the world's top 300 at No 274 - increasing his odds of qualifying for Rio.
Recent victories by Wang Jeung-hun (left) of South Korea and Li Haotong of China underlined the strength of the Asian Tour and the success of homegrown talent in regional competitions. NBC Sports and Golf Channel will combine to provide a record 49.5 hours of live coverage over four days from the British Open at Royal Troon.
NBC and Golf Channel picked up the British Open a year early from ESPN, and it gives the network a major after the USGA signed on with Fox. The Masters prefers limited live television and provided 18.5 hours this year on ESPN and CBS. The Open Championship, with the advantage of extended summer daylight in Britain, typically starts about 6:30 am at St. Golf Channel and NBC, both owned by Comcast, provide a seamless transition in coverage of the PGA Tour, and this will be no different. McCarley said Johnny Miller, Nick Faldo and Frank Nobilo will rotate as lead analyst in the tower on the 18th hole. The 10 analysts on the ground and other towers include the usual NBC crew (Roger Maltbie, David Feherty, Gary Koch, Peter Jacobsen, Notah Begay, Mark Rolfing) and some who mostly do Golf Channel telecasts (such as Curt Byrum and Jerry Foltz). Golf Channel will have its studio live from Royal Troon, which will include David Duval when he gets done playing. With more than a $1.08 million check as a consolation prize for his runner-up finish at The Players Championship, Kevin Chappell no longer has to worry about US Open qualifying and can book his first trip to the British Open.
This is the last week of competition before the US Open exempts the top 60 in the world ranking and the British Open takes the top 50.
Billy Horschel (47), Ryan Moore (48) and Smylie Kaufman (51) are not playing the AT&T Byron Nelson (David Lingmerth, at No 49, is in the Irish Open).
While they are safe for the US Open, Kaufman cannot move into the top 50 this week for Royal Troon. Playing in the Byron Nelson is James Hahn (54), who probably needs a finish just outside the top 10 to crack the top 50. Tiger Woods played five holes when he opened his golf course in Houston, and he plays at home at the Medalist. He might be patient when it comes to his recovery, but that doesn't carry over to the golf course.
Faldo won the 1983 French Open, the Martini International in England and the Car Care Plan International in England. Rory McIlroy in 2014 won three in a row - the British Open, Bridgestone Invitational and PGA Championship - though that was over four weeks. Tiger Woods has done it twice on the PGA Tour - at the end of 1999 (Disney, Tour Championship, American Express) and in 2006 (PGA Championship, Bridgestone Invitational, Deutsche Bank). Notes: The field features eight of the top 10 in the women's world rankings and 15 of the top 20.
The doomsayers have some advice for tennis fans: Intoxicate yourselves on the elixir still being served up by the best men's generation ever to grace the game before the well dries up and mere mortals take over.
They say when 17-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer, claycourt king Rafael Nadal and Serbian superstar Novak Djokovic, not to mention the mercurial Andy Murray, hang up their rackets, interest in the game will plummet. However, a hungry bunch of young lions are showing all the signs of keeping the flame burning long after the Fab Four settle down to quiet lives of polishing their silverware. At Indian Wells this year, the men's Tour launched its ATP#NextGen campaign to promote rising stars aged 21 and under. Volatile but dazzling Australian Nick Kyrgios, Croatian teenager Borna Coric and Alexander Zverev, a German already being compared to Boris Becker, are already established in the top 50. Throw teenagers Chung Hyeon (South Korea), Karen Khachanov (Russia) and Quentin Halys (France) into the mix alongside American 18-year-old Taylor Fritz, the youngest player in the top 100, Japan's Yoshihito Nishioka, Britain's Kyle Edmund and Swede Elias Ymer and there appears to be critical mass of youngsters teeming with potential.
Still, according to American Brad Gilbert, a former top-10 player and coach to the likes of Andre Agassi and Murray, there are no guarantees. Stepping up to join Federer, Djokovic and Nadal, winners of 17, 14 and 11 Grand Slam titles since 2003, has been notoriously difficult. Since 2010 Murray and Stanislas Wawrinka have won two apiece and Marin Cilic one while Juan Martin del Potro is the only other active player to have won a major. Kyrgios, a Wimbledon quarterfinalist two years ago at age 19, is leading the charge having risen to a career-high 19th in the world heading to the French Open. Coric reached his first ATP final in India at the start of the year, while Zverev twice crushed former big hope Grigor Dimitrov and almost beat Nadal at Indian Wells.
Zverev cautions against predicting a decline for the big guns any time soon, but says he is part of an exciting transition. With world No 1 Djokovic turning 29 this week, a few days after Murray, Nadal 30 and Federer soon to be 35, ATP chief Chris Kermode is eagerly waiting to see how the kids shape up.
Kyrgios was threatened with suspension last year after making lurid remarks about the Stan Wawrinka's girlfriend, but he is letting his tennis do the talking this season. Lacks the killer weapons of Kyrgios and Alexander Zverev, but makes up for that with a maturity beyond his years. Has struggled to chalk up big results against players in the top 20 but did make the finals in Chennai and Marrakesh. Standing 6-foot-3 and packing huge weapons with his serve and forehand, Zverev also boasts the kind of fluid movement that similarly tall players struggle with. Appears to thrive on the show courts and outplayed Nadal this year in Indian Wells before missing a match point and succumbing. By reaching the Memphis Open final, he became the youngest American man to reach a Tour final since Michael Chang in 1989.
A member of the British Davis Cup team that won the trophy for the first time in 79 years last November, the 21-year-old has benefited from spending time with compatriot Andy Murray during an intensive training camp in Dubai before the start of 2016. Having picked up tips from Murray on how to improve his game, Edmund battled through qualifying before reaching his first ATP quarterfinal in Doha. Australia's Nick Kyrgios argues with the umpire during his opening match at the Madrid Open on May 4. LeBron James hardly missed and scored 24 points in three quarters, Kyrie Irving scored 27 and Cleveland picked up where it left off before a long layoff by thumping the Toronto Raptors 115-84 in Game 1 of the NBA's Eastern Conference final on Tuesday night.
James made his first nine shots - one an arena-rattling powerhouse dunk - and the Cavs, healthy and hungry after losing in the Finals a year ago, shot 67 percent from the field in the first half while improving to 9-0 this postseason. Cleveland is the first team to start the playoffs with nine straight wins since San Antonio reeled off 10 in a row in 2012. But although the Cavs are more than halfway to winning a title - and ending the city's 52-year drought - James isn't satisfied. But unlike their second-round series, when they made 77 3-pointers and swept Atlanta, the Cavs did most of their damage from close range, draining just 7 of 20 3-point attempts. DeMar DeRozan scored 18 points and Bismack Biyombo added 12 for Toronto, which had just one day to prepare for the Cavs after going to seven games with Miami.
Kyle Lowry, who scored 35 points in the Raptors' series-clinching win over Miami, was held to just eight as he and the Raptors were roughed up in their first appearance in the conference final.
Cleveland figured to have some rust following a nine-day break since ousting the Hawks, but not only did the Cavs look refreshed, they looked better than before. These are the Cavs at full force, not the version missing Love and Irving in last year's Finals.
The Cavs outscored the Raptors 33-16 in the second quarter when James personally welcomed Canada's NBA franchise to the East's final round with a devastating dunk.
Driving baseline past DeMarre Carroll, James cut across the lane and hammered home a right-handed windmill.
He celebrated the slam by tilting his head, backpedaling and letting out a primal yell, along with 20,000 fans.
The impressive bucket capped a 20-2 spurt for the Cavs, whose swarming defense was making life miserable for Lowry and his teammates. The Raptors came in as overwhelming underdogs, but Casey wasn't worried about the stage being too big or his team fearing the Cavs. They combined to take 18 foul shots in Game 7 against Miami, and DeRozan said he and Lowry needed to be more aggressive. Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James dunks against the Toronto Raptors during the first half of Tuesday's opening game of the NBA Eastern Conference final in Cleveland. Brent Burns scored San Jose's first two powerplay goals of the series and Jones stopped 26 shots for his second shutout of the postseason. Jones wasn't happy about giving up the go-ahead goal in Game 1 to Jori Lehtera on a shot that slipped under his left arm.
Tommy Wingels and Dainius Zubrus also scored and Logan Couture had two assists to help the Sharks bounce back from a tight loss.
Elliott wasn't as sharp as he's been throughout the Blues' run to their first conference final since 2001, nor was the rest of the St. Burns' fifth and sixth goals of the postseason both came on one-timers with Troy Brouwer in the penalty box, and were his only shots of the game. The 6-foot-5, 230-pound defenseman made it 2-0 in the second off a nice setup from Pavelski just 16 seconds after Brouwer went off for slashing. Zubrus assisted on Wingels' goal early in the first and added an empty-netter in the final minute.
Vladimir Tarasenko led all players with six shots at the end of a long day - his wife, Yana, gave birth to a son earlier Tuesday.
The Blues' star was looking at the video board when the team announced the arrival to an SRO crowd of 19,586. The Sharks entered the series clicking at 31 percent on the powerplay, best in the postseason. They were 0 for 3 in the opener and DeBoer complained about the lack of calls during the day between games. San Jose also killed off a four-minute high-sticking call against Marleau early in the third period. United beat Bournemouth 3-1 in its final game on Tuesday - a game rescheduled from Sunday due to a bomb scare - but it was not enough to take it into the Champions League places as it finished below fourth-place Manchester City on goal difference.
United must now beat Crystal Palace in Saturday's FA Cup final to salvage something from its season, and there were ripples of dissent towards van Gaal in the form of boos as he addressed the sparse home crowd after the match. But despite persistent speculation linking Jose Mourinho with his job, when asked if he would still be in place on the first day of next season, van Gaal, who took over at United in 2014, replied: "Yes. Fears that supporters would stay away following Sunday's postponement, which followed the discovery of a fake bomb left by accident in a toilet cubicle during a training exercise, were realized.
While United did not officially announce the attendance, the stadium appeared around two-thirds full. Van Gaal, however, used his post-match speech to praise United's fans for their "unconditional" support and claimed afterwards that the stadium was not full because overseas supporters were unable to make the trip. Van Gaal conceded United's fifth-place finish represented a "step back", but said Leicester City's title triumph proved that anyone could win the title next season.
Needing a 19-goal win to leapfrog City into fourth place, United had to wait until the 43rd minute to go ahead as Marcus Rashford dummied Anthony Martial's pass for skipper Wayne Rooney to tuck away his 100th league goal at Old Trafford. Rashford, named in England's provisional Euro 2016 squad on Monday, made it 2-0 by thrashing home from Antonio Valencia's knockdown and Rooney then freed substitute Ashley Young to add a third. But in stoppage time Chris Smalling sliced Max Gradel's shot into his own net to gift Bournemouth a goal that prevented David de Gea from earning a share of the Golden Glove - awarded to the goalkeeper with the most clean sheets - with Arsenal's Petr Cech. United finished the campaign with just 49 league goals to their name - its worst tally since 1989-90 - and despite decrying perceived poor fortune with penalties, van Gaal could not disguise his team's attacking shortcomings.
Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe confirmed that his club had rejected offers from West Ham United for midfielder Matt Ritchie and Callum Wilson on the eve of the game, and expressed annoyance over the timing of the bids.
As Manchester United's mascot looks on, manager Louis van Gaal applauds fans during a lap of honor following Tuesday's 3-1 win over Bournemouth at Old Trafford. The unflappable 7-footer, admittedly unsatisfied with any performance short of perfection, is the unanimous winner of the NBA Rookie of the Year award, giving the Minnesota Timberwolves consecutive winners after Andrew Wiggins took the Eddie Gottlieb Trophy last season. Minnesota Timberwolves rookie Karl-Anthony Towns celebrates after hitting the game-winning shot against the Portland Trail Blazers on April 9. The first pick in the 2015 draft out of Kentucky received all 130 first-place votes from a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters in the United States and Canada, joining Damian Lillard (2013), Blake Griffin (2011), David Robinson (1990) and Ralph Sampson (1984) as recent unanimous winners.
Towns ranked eighth in the NBA in rebounds and field-goal percentage while producing the best debut for a big man since Tim Duncan in 1998. Minnesota is the first team with back-to-back winners of the award since Bob McAdoo (1973) and Ernie DiGregorio (1974) with the Buffalo Braves.
The only rookie in the league to start all 82 games, Towns was named Western Conference rookie of the month in all six months the award was handed out.
The figurative wall that so many first-year players hit during a schedule more than twice as long as college never impeded his progress. Displaying the polish and poise of a veteran from the opening game of the season, Towns showed an elite ability to pass, rebound and score from both the paint and the 3-point line, giving the Timberwolves hope they've finally found the star they need to carry them out of the league's dregs. With Towns, Wiggins, Zach LaVine, Ricky Rubio, Gorgui Dieng and Shabazz Muhammad to be coached next season by Tom Thibodeau, the Wolves believe they have the ingredients to finally reach the playoffs for the first time since 2004.
Thibodeau and Towns have already spoken "a lot," according to the player whom the new coach has already begun to lean heavily on.
Towns has spoken of his obsessive focus on excellence, and his appearance on the awards stage set up on the arena floor was the embodiment of this extremity in so many ways.
Cool and confident in the spotlight, Towns brought an All-Star fashion presence to Monday's ceremony, wearing a black suit accessorized by a Prince-inspired silky purple pocket square and a long, lavender tie. Deferential to the greater cause, Towns also brought a list of teammates, coaches, trainers and others to thank so as not to leave anyone out.
Family-first Towns remembered his upbringing in New Jersey while speaking proudly of his father and sister and bringing his mother in the audience to tears. Towns donated the Kia Sorento he received from the award's sponsor to the Leukemia Lymphoma Society in honor of former Timberwolves executive and coach Flip Saunders. The Minnesota Timberwolves will send Karl-Anthony Towns as their representative to the NBA draft lottery, hoping for the same fortune that brought them the NBA Rookie of the Year.
This time, they'll have 88 of the 1,000 ping-pong balls in the hopper, for an 8.8 percent chance of landing the top spot again. Towns will wear one of the late Flip Saunders' wedding rings around his neck as a good luck charm at the suggestion of Saunders' son, Ryan, who wears it around his neck each day. Saunders, Minnesota's former coach, died last October after a battle with Hodgkin's lymphoma. The potential payoff comes on Tuesday, when the 76ers have the best chance to win the NBA draft lottery. The LA Lakers and Boston Celtics, the NBA's most storied franchises, have the next-best odds of getting the No 1 pick and the chance to draft the type of player that could get them back to the lofty positions they used to occupy.
But nobody is set up like the 76ers, who used to be regular winners themselves but have done nothing but lose - which seemed to be their plan - in recent years.
The team with the worst record normally has a 25 percent chance of winning the lottery, but the Sixers' odds are even better.
And there's more: If the Lakers don't remain in the top three, their selection would also go to Philadelphia, a pick the Lakers originally dealt to Phoenix for Steve Nash that the 76ers later acquired in another trade. The 14 teams that didn't make the playoffs go to the lottery, which sets the top three picks. The Lakers had the No 2 pick last year and are right back in the same spot in the lottery after going 17-65 in Kobe Bryant's final season. The Celtics were a 48-win playoff team who will take the Brooklyn Nets' spot on stage as part of the payment from the Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce trade in 2013.
The lottery debuted in 1985 when the Celtics, Lakers and 76ers were in the midst of claiming nine straight NBA championships, so any of them, with good history and strong fan bases, would be a welcome landing spot for this year's top talent.
But they didn't have the worst record in either season and last year that proved particularly costly, with Minnesota cashing in its 25 percent chance and getting Karl-Anthony Towns, the Rookie of the Year who appears to be a franchise player.
It's unclear yet what the Sixers have, as they ended up with the No 3 pick both times and drafted Joel Embiid - who still hasn't played because of a foot injury - and Jahlil Okafor, who had some rocky times as a rookie.
Nobody was beating Philadelphia to the bottom this season, after an 0-18 start and 28-game skid spanning the previous season sent the Sixers to a 10-72 finish that was barely better than the worst ever in an 82-game schedule. So they're in great position for a shot at LSU's Ben Simmons or Duke's Brandon Ingram - or perhaps one of them and another building block. Outside his team's locker room, Oklahoma City Thunder coach Billy Donovan received a round of hugs and celebratory handshakes for pulling off something no other team has done at Oracle Arena this postseason: win. Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and the rest of the Thunder dazzled in the fourth quarter the way the defending champion Golden State Warriors have done so many times this season on their home floor, rallying from 14 points down to notch a 108-102 victory in Game 1 of the Western Conference final on Monday night.
Golden State Warriors' Klay Thompson shoots between Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant (left), Steven Adams (12) and Serge Ibaka (9) during the second half of Monday's opening game of the NBA's Western Conference final in Oakland, California. Durant scored 26 points and made a key 17-foot jumper with 30.7 seconds left, while Westbrook scored 24 of his 27 points in the second half. Westbrook also had 12 assists and seven steals in the opener of OKC's fourth West final in six years.
Steven Adams made a pair of free throws for Oklahoma City with 1:01 remaining, and Klay Thompson missed a reverse lay-in moments later at the other end. MVP Stephen Curry had 26 points and a playoff career-high 10 rebounds, but the Warriors missed too many shots down the stretch. With his team down 105-102, Steve Kerr begged for a traveling call on Westbrook at midcourt with 17.2 seconds left, with the NBA Coach of the Year gesturing with his arms.


Thompson scored 19 of his 25 points in the first half, but shot 3 for 10 over the last two quarters.
Durant scored to get his team within 88-85 going into the final quarter, then knocked down a tying 3 just 12 seconds into the fourth. Dion Waiters' layup at 10:30 put the Thunder ahead for the first time since the opening quarter. Durant, Serge Ibaka and Adams each had double-digit rebounds - a focal point for Golden State after the Warriors won 121-118 in overtime on Curry's long game-winner at Oklahoma City on Feb 27 despite being outrebounded 62-32. Curry was 9 for 22 from the field, including a 6-for-14 performance from beyond the arc, and committed seven turnovers to go with seven assists. He hit a 3-pointer in his 45th straight playoff game, breaking Reggie Miller's record set from 1995-2000. This marked the unanimous MVP's second straight start since coming off the bench in Game 4 against the Trail Blazers following a right knee sprain that still isn't 100 percent. It also marked the first playoff matchup between Oklahoma City and the Warriors, though Golden State lost a first-round series 3-1 to the franchise when it was the Seattle SuperSonics in 1992.
In its first European final since losing to AC Milan in the 2007 Champions League, Liverpool is looking to quash the Spanish side's bid for an unprecedented third straight Europa League title at Basel's St. It brings Liverpool's journey through the competition under manager Jurgen Klopp to a thrilling climax, following dramatic wins over Manchester United, Borussia Dortmund and Villarreal in recent months. Liverpool's Emre Can salutes the crowd after the Reds beat Villarreal in the semifinal, second-leg match at Anfield on May 5. After seeing his side sink Villarreal brilliantly to reach the final, Klopp declared: "To go to a final you need a little bit of luck in decisive moments, but most of the time you need outstanding performances. Can wants to seize his chance in his first final with the club, but says a collective show of force will be required against the tough La Liga side. Five-time European champion Liverpool, which has also won the Europa League and its predecessor the UEFA Cup three times, has often provided drama on the European stage. In 2001, the Reds triumphed after a nine-goal thriller against Deportivo Alaves only after Delfi Geli scored a late own goal.
Four years later, Liverpool staged arguably the greatest comeback in Champions League final history by overcoming a three-goal deficit at halftime to force AC Milan into extra time then penalty kicks, winning its fourth title 3-2 from the spot. After Milan took revenge with a 2-1 Champions League triumph in 2007, Liverpool now has the chance to silver-line an encouraging first season for Klopp at Anfield. With a Champions League spot also offered to Wednesday's winner, the German manager has pulled out all the stops.
Sevilla may have the added pressure of facing Barcelona in the Spanish Cup final on Sunday, but coach Unai Emery insisted: "We have the chance to play two finals and, despite the difficulty our opponents will cause us, the team is determined and determined to enjoy it. Kevin Gameiro, Sevilla's top scorer this season with 28 goals including seven in eight Europa League outings, believes his side's past experiences will prove decisive. He already owns losers' and winners' medals from Champions League finals, but as part of Bayern Munich's squad the 22-year-old did not even get to lace up his boots, in 2012 and 2013 respectively. A security contractor is being blamed by Manchester United for leaving a dummy bomb in Old Tafford stadium that caused the cancelation of Sunday's final Premier League game against Bournemouth. United vice-chairman Ed Woodward said the device had been left in error by a sub contractor following an exercise to train dog handlers at the stadium, after it was recorded as having been removed.
The fake device, thought to consist of a mobile phone attached to a pipe, was discovered minutes before United and Bournemouth were due to take to the pitch and was safely detonated by bomb disposal experts. British media named the company that left the device in the stadium as Security Search Management and Solutions. Christopher Reid, owner of Security Search Management, told Sky News that he was "devastated" about what had happened. About 3,500 Bournemouth fans made the 500-mile round trip to Manchester to see their club's first league game at Old Trafford. It was United's second security scare of the week after its team bus was pelted with cans and bottles by West Ham United fans five days earlier.
In April, Chan led Eastern Sports Club to Hong Kong's Premier League championship for the first time in 21 years. Chan Yuen-ting (center), head coach of Eastern Sports Club, celebrates with her players after winning the Hong Kong Premier League title on May 7. The title capped the 27-year-old Chan's debut season as head coach and earned her a Guinness World Record as the first female coach to win a men's championship title in a top regional league. Her path into the game started as a 13-year-old, when she began watching Manchester United games on TV and, in particular, England legend Beckham, whom she swooned over as "handsome". The schoolgirl crush soon developed into a love of the game itself, which eventually morphed into a soccer coaching career - despite opposition from her parents.
After playing amateur soccer for university teams and representing Hong Kong, Chan decided to take the coaching track so she could break into the men's professional game. She went from assistant coach to head coach at Eastern in December after her predecessor accepted an offer from a club on the China mainland. Since then, she has set out to win the players' respect, spending hours dissecting match videos and statistics to demonstrate her deep knowledge of the game.
At a training session in Hong Kong, eagle-eyed Chan, dressed in a black tracksuit, took her place in the center of team passing drills and quietly watched, sometimes running alongside the players. Worried their daughter would have no future in soccer, they tried to persuade her to take up art or dancing. But, determined to pursue her Beckham-inspired career, Chan faked her mother's signature as a teenager to apply for a soccer training program. She studied geography at university, graduating in 2010, and went on to work as a data analyst at Hong Kong team Pegasus, where she was later hired as assistant coach.
But behind many a film star there are long periods of joblessness and menial work before they make the big time. Eight months ago she began to produce, star in and distribute online dozens of short videos in which she plays a variety of characters and lampoons those in everyday situations such as dating. The public spotlight fell on her when she attracted venture capital of 12 million yuan ($1.85 million) in March.
This year heralds the beginning of the online celebrity economy in China," says Zhang Xiaorong, a researcher with the Tencent Research Institute, in a recent report.
Many online celebrities are going to emerge this year," says Xue Yongfeng, a researcher with Beijing internet consultancy Analysys International.
But it is only in recent months in China - particularly through Papi Jiang - that the tremendous commercial value of these celebrities has begun to crystallize in the public mind, and more talent, investors and capital are beginning to pour into the market. It has produced many more ways in which they can make a name for themselves and then turn that into cash.
The online celebrity market, still in its infancy, could be worth hundreds of billions of yuan, Da says. Pictures or videos of these celebrities - and they are almost without exception attractive young women who dress to the nines - appear on social media, accompanied by advice for their followers on subjects such as choosing the right clothes and the right cosmetics. Instead, most of these celebrities have a savvy back-up team that helps them in their business dealings and with the content they post. She now has 490,000 followers, and about 50 to 80 percent of what her Taobao shop sells is snapped up by that entourage. Taobao says more than 1,000 shops connected to online celebrities who hawk women's clothing each have a sales revenue of more than 1 million yuan a year. Against decorated backdrops in various styles, the central character may sing, dance, play games or tell jokes.
There are more than 200 live streaming platforms, and the ministry says the industry was worth about 7.77 billion yuan last year.
They also give expert opinions or advice on talk shows or spread gossip about other celebrities. He is the son of Wang Jianlin, one of China's richest men and chairman of mainland property and entertainment conglomerate Wanda Group. Some live streaming platforms cross into controversy as a result of host behavior considered inappropriate or illegal, such as wearing overly skimpy attire, using lots of vulgar words or, in some cases, simulated or actual sexual behavior. Several weeks ago, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television gave Papi Jiang a dressing down for using "swear words and insulting language" and ordered her to clean up her act.
The Tencent report says that the online celebrity of half of those now enjoying it is likely to dissipate after only six months to three years, even though those with more staying power may remain for five years or longer. The best are those with strong personalities who are innovative, hardworking and talented, and those who are excellent communicators. Her beautiful V-shaped face, sexy figure and funny, bold and straightforward personality helped attract followers, who now number more than 6 million, and helped her amass earnings last year of more than 5 million yuan ($767,000). Online streaming has a very low entry threshold - as long you have a computer, you can register with a website and start broadcasting - and the online streaming industry is growing fast.
According to a report from Beijing-based iResearch Consulting Group, the public is likely to connect live broadcasting with eroticism, and online streaming scandals are frequent. So in her spare time, she trains in singing and dancing, and prepares new styles of cosplay - wearing costumes to represent characters - or checks out online games to play with her followers.
While unable to talk to fans much, she would still record short videos to say hello to her fans on her mobile phone. The competition will be fierce, and I will need to make more effort to improve myself," she says. This year, the agency she signed with plans to produce an online television program, and she expects to have a role in it. Although the result of their work is not entirely clear yet, it does mean cyber celebrities can be made in batches, offering endless streams of content. The birth of incubators means that in the online celebrity area, star-making factories have appeared," says Zhang Xiaorong, a senior researcher at the Tencent Research Institute, in a recent report. The company has 50 employees and she plans to sign two dozen celebrities by the end of this year. Second is to find good supply chain partners to best showcase the online celebrities' products and content. When she works with them, she tries to respect their unique style and find the way to help them showcase it. Compared with the funds needed for scientific research, he says the costs of popularizing the crop and promoting it in the market are far higher. There are no plug and play technologies that fit into the same types of infrastructure in different cities, he says. And the stories in it about a simple man and his family's bookshop in the city of Xi'an are unlikely to stir readers that much. And in the most important location are a stack of solid olive green books, copies of Order: The Story of Fangyuan Bookshop, which are barely discernible because they almost melt into the background. He squints and bares the teeth under his handlebar moustache in a broad smile, looking for all the world like a caricature of those images in the book.
By then, the family had run the bookshop for 28 years, and the ambitious Lyu can see the family running it beyond when it is 100 years old. That expertise helped give the shop a great deal of credibility that contributed to its success, and when it was at its best it employed 11 people. Li Jin, Lyu Chonghua and another classmate of theirs at college, Wei Tao, went to take a look.
She was surprised that the books she saw there, as attractive as they were, were not that fancy, and they did not strike her as being particularly collectable.
In 2011 he started collecting materials for the book, trying to tell the stories of his family and the bookstore from many different angles. In three years, based on her understanding of beautiful books and the Lyu family, she tried more than 60 different formats.
Despite being well-grounded in Chinese history, the British author was astonished that he had never heard of the uprising, so he decided to learn more about it. Although technically a biography, the author's grasp of history and the pivotal events of the time provide an excellent guide to late 19th century China and the conditions under which people lived. Weighing heavier on the scales are his tendency to take the credit for other people's ideas, and at a time when traveling in the interior inevitably meant handing out bribes and "gifts", his refusal to give face or money to local officials often hindered his progress in terms of both geography and his career.
In 1985, the then 20-year-old photography student at the London College of Printing - now the London College of Communication - was left a small inheritance, so he asked his tutors for permission to travel to China during term time to undertake a photojournalism project. One day, as they rested on the Great Wall, the brothers spotted a couple of Westerners being guided by a large group of Chinese officials and surrounded by a gaggle of photographers and journalists. Only later did the brothers realize that the men were George Michael and Andrew Ridgley, then better known as Wham, the first Western pop group to perform live in China. That trip sparked an ongoing love affair with the provinces of Guizhou, Sichuan and Yunnan. And, having spent 25 years working to deadlines, it was an indulgence to set my own pace," he explained. As Channel Islanders, and therefore geographically closer to France than the British mainland, the Mesny family spoke French at home. The "Slash" are not in it just for the cash, though financial rewards are always appreciated, as the age of the Internet and mass information provides them a chance to explore different roles in a way previous generations could only dream of. In an age of austerity it is not unusual for people to take on an extra job to pay the bills but for the Slash Generation their motivation is not primarily to improve their bank balance but to unleash their creativity. It made me feel really good when you made a difference in a new area which you used to know nothing about," he said. Although Cheng loves his jobs, enjoys his life and has somehow managed to juggle various identities, he confessed that finding the time to have a girlfriend has been problematic. Unlike Cheng, who was focusing on many fronts, Zhu is really concentrating on making his rock festival famous in China. Art is about expressing your own ideas in your works while design is a business to meet the demands of your clients. These include self-control, good communication skills and they are popular in their circle.
Kind-hearted, enthusiastic, and it seems that no matter what situation there are in, they can adapt quickly. They have a variety of interests, are always willing to experience new things and have friends from wide-ranging backgrounds. The scene is reminiscent of youth practice sessions at La Liga (Spain's top professional league) giants such as Barcelona and Real Madrid, he said. The high levels of enthusiasm and the school's commitment to develop the soccer program has impressed Iglesias, who was hired by Beijing-based Ray Sports last October to train players at the school as a physical education teacher. China opened its first line in 2007 and now has 19,000 kilometers of track in service, more than the rest of the world's high-speed rail networks together.
Her father taught philosophy at a military college and her mother taught Chinese literature.
So researchers and scientists don't talk to marketers because they speak different languages. She addressed the Pujiang Innovation Forum, organized by the Ministry of Science & Technology, in Shanghai as far back as 2000. They had brands that could have been quite promising but they allowed themselves to be acquired by Western brands who basically discarded them," she says.
However, if one listens to Lu, the story of Li is inextricably linked to that of another man, the much more famous Chinese mariner and explorer Zheng He (also known in English as Cheng Ho), whose expeditionary voyages between 1405 and 1433 took his fleet to parts of Asia and Africa. However, few people know that Zheng, who lived between 1371 and 1433, was a devout Buddhist.
But they did have a faith, Buddhism, in common, something they also shared with successive Ming rulers. Some historians think his ashes were returned to his homeland when the fleet reached the Chinese coast in July of that year. But no connection was made between the bronze tower and the Fahai frescoes until Zheng Zihai visited the temple years later. Between 1412 and 1428, under the supervision of Zheng He, a grand Buddhist temple was built in Nanjing and known as Da Bao En Temple, or the Temple of Gratitude. Many even blame them for the fall of the Ming 276 years after its founding, in 1644," says Lu, the tour guide. The master clock restorer, 55, looks after hundreds of timepieces at the museum, also known as the Forbidden City. Today, he shares a 60-square-meter studio with two other craftsmen in a closed section of the museum. That replicates the journey I've had with Palace, my football journey and the street football with how I've grown up," Bolasie explained.
Playing at a different level than the rest of the field, the Cavs are now two wins from appearing in their second straight NBA Finals and trying to end Cleveland's 52-year sports championship drought.
But Toronto lacks the necessary firepower to stay with a Cleveland team playing its best basketball this season, one that James likened to a football team. DeMar DeRozan scored 22 for the Raptors, who have had a disastrous debut in the conference finals to this point. The move helped Toronto's second unit, as Patterson and Terrance Ross gave the Raptors an early lift and had them tied with the Cavs at 46-all.
The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the Magic have not announced the hire.
Vogel comes to Orlando as a proven head coach with playoff experience having led the Indiana Pacers the last five full seasons.
His Pacer teams were usually one of the top defensive clubs in the NBA, finishing in the top six in field goal percent defense in each of his five full seasons as head coach. It looks like it has a tennis ball on top of it, but it doesn't affect range of motion or anything. Wang is a very good buddy of mine and it's great to see him win back-to-back on the European Tour," said Canada's Richard T. Kim are still ahead of Lee and Wang in the race to represent South Korea at the Olympic Games in Rio, the latter, who grew up playing junior golf in the Philippines, is hoping to push hard for a berth with qualifying set to conclude on July 11. I'm so excited right now and really happy that I have won," said Wang, who is competing in the Irish Open this week. He is projected to fall out of the top 60 this week, so the Frenchman would need to make the cut and finish around the mid-40s to get back in. He missed out on his bid for the Masters at the Dell Match Play and would help himself toward a US Open invite by finishing in the top 20 or so. But he says he still hasn't played an 18-hole round since his two back surgeries last year.
He is in the Irish Open this week at The K Club and will try to join Nick Faldo and Seve Ballesteros as the only players to win three straight European Tour events on the schedule. Three years later, Ballesteros won the Irish Open, the Johnnie Walker Monte Carlo Open and the French Open. And in 2010, Martin Kaymer won the PGA Championship, Dutch Open and Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland - all in an eight-week stretch. Germany is looking for a new Boris Becker and Zverev could be its best hope, especially at Wimbledon. He finished 11 of 13 from the field and added six rebounds and four assists in just 28 minutes. The Raptors regrouped for a moment and closed within 12 before the Cavs decided enough was enough and closed the half with a 12-4 flurry to go up 66-44.
He made it a three-goal gap about 12 minutes into the third off a feed from Patrick Marleau 24 seconds after Brouwer was whistled for high sticking.
Louis Blues as they battle for the puck during the third period of Tuesday's Game 2 of the Western Conference final in St. In spite of the fact we have not always played very well, they have supported the players on the pitch always.
Those organizations, they're big-time," said Marquette center Henry Ellenson, an expected lottery pick. If this one was any kind of preview of what is coming, this should be a dandy of a series between the NBA's highest-scoring teams from the regular season.
He rotated his entire starting XI for the 1-1 draw at West Brom on Sunday, meaning he welcomes back the big guns. Tony Lloyd, who serves as Manchester mayor and police commissioner, branded it "outrageous" and a "fiasco". At age 27, Chan is younger than several of the players she coaches, yet she has already secured a unique place in soccer history by becoming the first woman to lead a men's team to a top-division regional championship. On April 21, after fierce bidding among those vying to place advertisements alongside her videos, the hammer fell with a bid of 22 million yuan for the first ad to go with one of her online video clips. The potential worth of the most valuable online celebrity, the online writer called the Third Master of the Tang Family, is put at 1.47 billion yuan.
The brands behind the pictures then parse and weigh fan feedback in the form of product orders as they start to roll in before deciding how much more to produce for their linked Taobao stores.
These online celebrities' income is derived mainly from gifts and money sent through the website by fans. This group of online celebrities is the largest but also the most difficult to pin down since their business models usually are not well developed yet and they are widely dispersed in cyberspace. They're the sort of people who will pose numerous times just for one shot that is going to be placed online. The report says that about 77 percent of China's netizens think online live streaming platforms have vulgar content. But she thinks it important to have a support team to help keep her career going for the long term.
Third is to sell their products and content through e-commerce sites like Taobao and other channels to fully realize their commercial value. So she has been able to help online celebrities navigate the clothing supply chain, she says. But this does not mean cities cannot learn from each other or seek ideas, inspiration and lessons from one another. I think more of that can happen," he says, adding that it is a different sort of model for delivery than the government paying for something and doing the installation itself. However, anyone carefully leafing through the pages of Order: The Story of Fangyuan Bookshop, is likely to be touched and amused by the ordinariness that is presented ingeniously through the airy and light interaction of text and image. It was a brave move, given that China was in turmoil - the Taiping Rebellion (1850-64) was in full swing - and with the Second Opium War (1856-60) about to reach its bloody conclusion, British adventurers were far from welcome in the country.
Whenever they spotted us, one of them would mutter, 'It's those guys again!'" recalled the 52-year-old author, with a laugh.
He then set up a youth association to promote communication between young people from Taiwan and the Chinese mainland. The progress over the past several months has been incredible," said the Spaniard, who used to be a youth trainer with La Liga club Celta Vigo. But they need to improve the organization of the school league system to provide more competitions for the children," he said. China will be a likely bidder for construction contracts on the UK's HS2 high-speed rail link. His religious pursuits eventually led him to share his Buddhist mentor with his contemporary, Li Tong, who was 18 years his junior.
For childless eunuchs, these edifices could also function as ancestral halls, where they were venerated by pilgrims who had come to worship Buddha. Emperor Xuande, the Ming emperor of the day, ordered Zheng He's grand burial on a mountain slope in Nanjing.
Emperor Yongle (1360-1424) ordered its construction to honor the late emperor and empress, who were founders of the dynasty. The studio recently featured in a three-part TV documentary, Masters in the Forbidden City, about the work behind the scenes at the museum. He scored on Cleveland's next possession, and while sitting on the bench during a subsequent timeout, he saluted applauding Cavs fans by pressing his fingers to his lips and touching his heart. Abdul-Jabbar attended Game 2 and flashed the peace sign when he was shown on the arena's giant scoreboard. I'm really happy to get second position," said the Bangladeshi, who has been hampered by a back injury in recent years. The PGA Championship is shown on TNT and CBS with 28 hours from Baltusrol the last week in July.
Pushed Rafael Nadal hard on clay at the Italian Open and has reached a career-high ranking.
Then you come back and do it again the next day and do it again and again and again," Fritz told the ATP website recently.
The deft creativity of the designer of the flip-book presentation of the caricature faces of the man to the left of the strings that bind the book are something to marvel at. Zheng Zihai, who has done extensive research into his ancestor's burial, says Li was responsible for construction of a temple tower in Zheng He's memory.
Rickie Fowler, Justin Fowler and Smylie Kaufman took another trip, though this was more work than play. Steven Bowditch began the year with a tie for 10th in Kapalua, but his game has gone south since then.
Bernhard Langer, who has not finished worse than 11th this year, is first or second in seven statistical categories. I think that's enough said about that." - Ken Duke, on comparing Jason Day and Jordan Spieth toTiger Woods. He also will play the Scottish Open to fulfill requirements for his first European Tour season. Lowry texted Lue on Wednesday night and said he wanted to get together and watch the Golden State-Oklahoma City game. Knox also will play the Scottish Open to get his minimum five starts required for being a European Tour this year.



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