That foundation includes centers Nico Hischier, selected No. 1 in the 2017 NHL Draft, and Jack Hughes, the No. 1 pick in the 2019 NHL Draft.
Hischier will try to rebound after scoring his NHL-low 36 points (14 goals, 22 assists) in 58 games last season. Hughes is expected to improve after scoring 21 points (seven goals, 14 assists) while averaging 15:52 in ice time in 61 games as an 18-year-old rookie.
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"You've got to get that first year under your belt, especially as a highly skilled offensive player," assistant general manager Dan MacKinnon said of Hughes. "We're confident his second year is going to be better, and his third year will be another step, so we're looking for good things."
Gasol and his agent recently discussed training camp deals with some NBA teams, but Gasol preferred to do more conditioning before seriously engaging in talks, he said. He has been training in Northern California, where he is living with his wife, Catherine McDonnell, and their 3-month-old daughter, as he hopes to play again in the NBA as more than a glorified coach.
"I think Coach is going to use me in a variety of ways, especially as a small-ball 5 and 4 sometimes," Durant said. "And bringing the ball up, too, so I've just got to be ready for anything."
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According to Durant, the Nets aren't placing an "emphasis" on playing center during small-ball lineups, with coach Steve Nash instead encouraging positionless basketball. On one possession, for example, Durant said that Kyrie Irving could be playing shooting guard, while Caris LeVert brings the ball upcourt.
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Ohlsen recommended that families help youth athletes find the masks that work for them. They can try many different types to find ones that are comfortable on their faces and allow them to breathe while playing or competing at a vigorous level. At first, wear the masks for short bouts of activity. Then work up to wearing the mask all the time during sports, Ohlsen said, even during full exertion at competitions.
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