KPK’s Proposal on Hajj Moratorium Declined

  VIVAnews – The former Chairman of Nahdlatul Ulama, Hasyim Muzadi, said Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK)’s proposal for hajj registration moratorium is not rightful, especially if the policy will result in the increase of Hajj Pilgrimage Expenses (ONH).  “If the hajj moratorium results in ONH rise, then it should not be done,” Hasyim told VIVAnews, today.  “If KPK sees possible corruption in hajj deposit, then it should conduct an audit, not pushing for moratorium,” said Hasyim.  He believed if the moratorium policy is considered a solution, then it should be proposed by the people or the House of Representatives (DPR) instead of KPK.  KPK earlier proposed to the Ministry of Religious Affairs to suspend hajj registration moratorium. This proposal is related to the Hajj Pilgrimage Expenses (BPIH) fund inflation. Deputy Head of KPK, Busyro Muqoddas, said the fund has reached Rp38 trillion with Rp1.7 trillion interest.  Busyro said the problem is that KPK’s accounting system couldn’t penetrate the hajj candidates fund management which may result in intransparency.  “Therefore, in order to prevent over inflation, we proposed the moratorium,” he said.  During a House Commission 8’s meeting, Busyro took an example of hajj registration in 2009 which reached 700 thousand candidates. Of the number, the Ministry received an initial deposit of Rp16 trillion.  Until February 2012, the hajj registration has blown up to 1.4 million candidates with an initial deposit of Rp32 trillion. If the Ministry of Religious Affairs continues to open the registration, then the initial deposit will continue to rise even though the hajj candidates’ quota is relatively the same from year to year. — Coverage by : Arief Ulyanov  • VIVAnews Rating There are currently no comments to display on this article.

Monkees reminiscing: Cedar Rapids appearance

The announcement today that Davy Jones has died and co-worker, Diana Nollen’s posting of her 1996 review of the Monkees’ Cedar Rapids performance, reminded me of one of my favorite stories I’ve done here.This ran in The Gazette on Aug. 30, 1996:Wild about Monkees: Englishman’s quest leads to C.R. festHey, hey, he’s a fan.Aiden Simington gathered up his last pounds and pence and traveled from his home in Oxford, England, to Cedar Rapids to see his favorite band, The Monkees, perform tonight at the Taste of Iowa celebration.The 26-year-old member of the group’s fan club first saw The Monkees on TV when he was 10, but has never seen a live performance.After missing the band’s sold-out tour in England in 1989, he was thrilled to learn the group was touring again. A stop in England was postponed – and might be rescheduled – but Simington didn’t want to chance missing them again, so he decided to travel to the United States.“I was thinking, ‘I can’t afford this,”‘ he said. “But then I thought, what if I get to age 40 and my kids … ask me, ‘When did you see them?”‘Finding a bargain-priced ticket, Simington boarded a plane to Miami, hoping to reach Cedar Rapids a short time later by land.“I failed geography in school,” he said. “I thought, how far can it be?”He ended up buying another plane ticket that brought him to Cedar Rapids, where he has split the last couple days between the Shady Acres Motel, where he is staying, and finding his way around town.His dream is to meet the members of the band “just to say to them the music you’ve made has affected me.“It has literally changed my life.”

The Monkees' Davy Jones is dead at 66

Davy Jones, the lead singer of The Monkees and one of the biggest teen idols of the 1960s, died Wednesday from a heart attack. He was 66. His death was reported by his publicist, Helen Kensick, and confirmed by Christine Weekes, the administrative manager for the medical examiner’s office in Fort Pierce, Florida, near the Martin Memorial Hospital South where Jones had been taken. A diminutive singer with a larger-than-life stage charisma, Jones was a frequent visitor to San Diego over the years, both with The Monkees and as a solo artist. His most recent performance here was a New Year’s Eve show with his own band at the San Diego Convention Center, where he headlined the the San Diego Fire Rescue Foundation’s 2nd annual Firefighters’ Ball. “He looked fantastic and was full of energy and all over the stage,” said Wendy Robinson, the foundation’s executive director. “He and his band stayed at the ball after their set. We had a second band and Davy and his band danced and partied with us.” A native of Manchester, England, Jones began his career as a child actor and starred as the Artful Dodger in a London production of “Oliver!” He became a pop superstar in 1966 after being cast as the lead singer in “The Monkees,” a U.S. TV series inspired in part by The Beatles’ movie “A Hard Day’s Night.” The band, whose other members were all Americans, scored 11 Top 40 hits between 1966 and 1968, including the chart-topping “Last Train to Clarksville,” “I’m a Believer” and “Daydream Believer” (which was written by San Diego native John Stewart, shortly before he left the Kingston Trio to launch a solo career). While The Monkees were dismissed by critics as the Pre-Fab Four, the group’s upbeat music and perky personalities resonated with millions of Americans teens and tweens in the 1960s. A homogenized version of the Fab Four, the Monkees were created to cash in on the lucrative youth market that exploded in the wake of the Liverpool-led “English Invasion” of the early ’60s. More than 400 actors and musicians, including Stephen Stills, Harry Nilsson and (rumor has it) Charles Manson, auditioned for the coveted roles won by Jones, Peter Tork, Mickey Dolenz and Michael Nesmith. Despite the fact the Monkees were not a “real” band, the TV series was such a hit that the quartet was soon performing to hordes of teeny-boppers at sold-out concerts across the nation, with Jimi Hendrix briefly touring as the group’s opening act. With their TV series providing invaluable exposure for “I’m a Believer,” “Daydream Believer” and other Monkees’ songs written by Stewart, Neil Diamond, and other leading tunesmiths of the day, the group earned nine consecutive Top 20 singles — and heated criticism that they were merely pop pretenders. “It was more than a TV show. It touched a lot of people very deeply; it was a part of their growing up. It gave a lot of young girls heartthrobs to look up to and fantasize about, and it kept them out of trouble. It was a very wholesome, boy-next-door thing, and there are a lot of people who thank us for helping bring up their kids.”

RIP Davy Jones, The Monkees’ Daydreamboat

I wasn’t born when The Monkees went on the air, so I don’t recall Davy Jones as my first teen idol. But he was probably my first image of what a teen idol was, thanks to his appearance in the ’70s Brady Bunch episode, “Getting Davy Jones,” in which superfan Marcia Brady overpromises that she can get the pop star to perform at her school (see video, above).MORE: Hey, Hey, They Were the MonkeesJones, the cute, diminutive Brit member of The Monkees, died today in Florida of a heart attack, at age 66. He was the member of the made-for-TV band who probably closest resembled the classic model of the ’60s music heartthrob: English-accented, boy-faced, with a clear singing tone and wide, earnest eyes. (And, of course, his tambourine.) Though Mickey Dolenz ended up singing lead on most of The Monkees hits, Jones performed one of the group’s biggest hits, “Daydream Believer.” (As well as a personal favorite, “Valleri.”) If Dolenz was the singer, Peter Tork the likeable goof and Michael Nesmith the laconic eccentric of the comic troupe/band, Jones was the dreamboat. Or daydreamboat:At the time The Monkees debuted on TV, there was controversy about the musical authenticity of the “Prefab Four,” who were cast for the part and originally did not even play their instruments. It seems quaint now, when not only have we seen generations of stage-managed teen stars–you can draw a straight line from ’60s Jones, and his haircut, to Justin Bieber–but we have an entire industry of music reality shows dedicated to the idea that TV not only can manufacture musical stars, but should.LIST: Top 10 Fake Bands — The MonkeesAnd really, even if the show never meant to be more than entertainment and a hit-single generator, we shouldn’t sell the Monkees short. It was far better TV than it had to be; during an era of formulaic domestic sitcoms and wacky comedies, it was a stylistically ambitious show, with a distinctive visual style, absurdist sense of humor and unusual story structure. Whatever Jones and The Monkees were meant to be, they became creative artists in their own right, and Jones’ chipper Brit-pop presence was a big reason they were able to produce work that was commercial, wholesome and yet impressively weird. See this Jones clip (with special guest Frank Zappa) from The Monkees’ surrealistic feature film, Head:RIP, Davy Jones.

Turnout reached 28 percent in February fire district election

February 29, 2012 By Warren Kagarise NEW — 10 a.m. Feb. 29, 2012Turnout in the Feb. 14 election to decide a $5.5 million bond for fire station construction reached 28 percent, King County Elections announced Tuesday, as officials certified the election results.State law required the Fire District 10 bond measure to receive a 60 percent yes vote from a turnout of at least 4,418 voters. The measure received a 64.7 percent yes vote from a turnout of 5,863 voters. (The district includes 20,791 registered voters.)Fire District 10 is the Eastside Fire & Rescue partner serving residents in Klahanie, May Valley, Mirrormont, Preston and Tiger Mountain in the Issaquah area, plus Carnation in rural King County.The district encompasses about 130 square miles and about 28,000 people.Officials plan to use bond dollars to relocate crews from Fire Station 78 at 16135 S.E. 113th Place near Renton to a modern facility at a more central location at Southeast May Valley Road and 207th Avenue Southeast.The district asked the electorate to OK the bond to fund a rebuilt Station 78 and improvements to other fire stations throughout the sprawling district. The price tag for the rebuilt station alone is expected to reach $4.5 million.Overall, elections officials issued 189,753 ballots for measures in Fire District 10 and school districts elsewhere in King County.Countywide, voters returned 60,880 ballots. The elections office counted 59,257 ballots. Voters returned 6,036 ballots to drop boxes at Issaquah City Hall and elsewhere.Officials said 2,000 ballots had signature challenges. The elections office resolved 1,103 signature challenges.Countywide, King County Elections predicted 38 percent turnout in the special elections, but turnout reached 32 percent in the contests. Comments Before you comment, please note:These comments are moderated.Comments should be relevant to the topic at hand and contribute to its discussion.Personal attacks and/or excessive profanity will not be tolerated and such comments will not be approved.This is not your personal chat room or forum, so please stay on topic.

LEAP YEAR: Archdeacon of Norwich releases prayer for February 29th engagements

The Venerable Jan McFarlaneArchdeacon of Norwich and Director of Communications Wednesday, February 29, 2012 11:33 AM The 366-day year has been used for thousands of years and is credited to the leader of the Roman empire. During his reign Julius Caesar discovered the Roman calendar – consisting of 364 days and an occasional leap month – was getting out of sync. He consulted astronomers who told him a year was actually 365¼ days long due to the time it takes the Earth to orbit the sun – the precise time being 365 days, six hours, nine minutes and just under 10 seconds. With this information he added an extra day to the end of February to ensure festivals and events would have continuity and in 45BC brought in a new calendar. His date rules were followed until the 16th century when the method was refined with the introduction of the Gregorian calendar, which set out that leap days could only be used in years divisible by four. The formula gets more complicated, however, as years increase as February 29 does not occur in century years – such as 1700 or 1800 – unless they were divisible by 400, hence why 2000 was a leap year. Since the introduction of February 29 there have been only a few hundred leap years, but it has allowed traditions and superstitions to arise around the unique date. One of the most well known being that today women can propose to men. The quirky rule is said to come from an Irish legend when St Bridget struck a deal with St Patrick to allow women to propose to men. If the lady was unlucky to get a “no” the man was expected to pay a penalty such as a gown, or 12 pairs of gloves so the spurned woman could hide her ringless finger. The tradition has been kept alive and for any women taking the plunge today, a prayer is on hand to help bless the engagement. The verse, released today to mark the leap year, is from Pocket Prayers of Blessing by the Venerable Jan McFarlane, Archdeacon of Norwich, and asks for God’s blessing. Ms McFarlane said: “This is a popular time of year to propose, and holding a newly-engaged couple before God in prayer is just about the best possible start they could have to their future together. “My hope is that this new pocket book will help us to bring God’s blessing into every situation, and will help us to remember that through good times – and bad – God is always there beside us.” The prayer reads (on hearing of an engagement): “God of love, please bless x and x as they prepare for the commitment of marriage. May the plans for the wedding not overtake the more important preparation for their lifetime together. Please bless their family and friends as they prepare for this special day and may your blessing be upon them now and always. Amen.” ● Are you popping the question today, or doing something out of the ordinary to mark leap year? Call our news team on 01263 513453.

Snooki & JWoww’s Shocking Revelation: “The Situation Is Gay”

Share Could the ‘G’ in GTL stand for something other than “gym” for Jersey Shore‘s Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino? According to his cast mates, Jenni “JWoww” Farley, 25 and Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, 24, the answer is definitely yes.The besties sat down to do an interview with HuffPost Gay Voices and had a lot to say when the topic turned to Mike’s sexuality. Both alluded to Mike’s gay tendencies.“His posture and the way he holds his cigarettes…everything,” JWoww started. “Listen, my best friend Joey, his husband was closeted for 27 years of his life. And I knew him before he came out. So, because of that, I know… the signs. [Mike] brings it up. He’ll say, ‘People think I’m gay and I don’t know what they’re talking about.’”Snooki also theorized about Mike’s sexuality joking about his habits when he brings home women from the club. “He gives them men’s clothing to wear,” the spunky reality starlet snapped. Meanwhile, The Situation’s publicist made a public statement debunking the ladies’ comments, calling the gay accusations “the most ridiculous statement I’ve ever heard.”Watch as the ladies talk more smack about Mike below in a recent interview with Us Weekly. “Mike has been crying lately that nobody likes him and he has no idea why, but I do recall hitting him the first season and I did not hit him for no reason,” JWoww explains in the video. “He puts himself in this position, and I’m kind of glad that he’s getting a reality check that he can’t get away with what he does to his roommates. For so long he’s played ‘the villain,’ but people were always on his side. People are starting to realize sometimes he’s not a good guy and he needs to take responsibility for that.”Do you think the Situation is a closeted homosexual—or are the ladies lashing out and spreading rumors simply because they don’t like him?

CIAA Events

 CHARLOTTE, N.C. — CIAA Events MONDAY, FEBRUARY 27•Food Lion VIP Sponsor ReceptionTime: 6pmHarvey B. Gantt Center: 551 South Tryon St, Charlotte•Tyga: Careless World Tour Mon, 02/27/12 @ The Fillmore Charlotte. With special guest YG. Doors 7pm. Show 8pm. Tickets: $23 (+ fees).Fillmore Charlotte: 1000 NC Music Factory Blvd, Charlotte, NClivenation.comTUESDAY, FEBRUARY 28•CIAA Men’s & Women’s Tournament Begins. Food Lion Women’s Games: 11:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m. & 5:00 p.m. Men’s Games: 7:00 p.m. & 9:00 p.m.Time Warner Cable Arena: 333 E. Trade St,, FEBRUARY 29• Day Events• CIAA Men’s & Women’s Tournament Food Lion Women’s Games: 11:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m. & 5:00 p.m. Men’s Games: 7:00 p.m. & 9:00 p.m.Time Warner Cable Arena: 333 E. Trade St,• NEA’s Education Day 8:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Charlotte Convention Center: 501 S College St, Charlotte, NC•Mode Noir | Black Mode (CIAA Fashion Week) Mode Noir is a high end fashion production that will showcase local boutiques, emerging designers, and national designers. It is intended to highlight African-American designers as well as raise awareness and funds towards the Presbyterian Hospital Blume Center which cares for and treats children with Sickle Cell Disease. Events starts at 7pm. Event Host: Jacinda Garabito. Featuring: Style Sanctum Flow by Tara Davis, Charles Lynch, Rafael Cox, Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th, Bipolar Couture, DRC ApeParel.724 Montana Dr, Charlotte,•SoulStage Karaoke & Old School Party @ Allure LoungeWednesday, Feb 29th. Hosted by My92.7′s Fly Ty. This Party is for the true lovers of the music, spinning your favorite jams from the 80′s, 90’s, & today. Doors open at 9pm, and everyone is FREE until 11pm. Limited $10 VIP tickets @ – $150 VIP tables. For Birthdays & VIP Tables call 704-890-7436.Allure Restaurant & Lounge: 1508 S.Mint St,•VYBE & VIEW @ OSSO RestaurantJoin Talk of the Town, The National Black MBA Association Charlotte Chapter, and Mayor Pro Tem Patrick D. Cannon for the Second Annual Who’s Who Social CI Weekend Launch Event & NBMBAA Charlotte Chapter Scholarship Fundraiser. This is an exclusive event and Advance RSVP is required for attendance. There will be special cocktails, wine, appetizer, & dinner packages just for you in support of this fundraiser — giving you an opportunites to mix, mingle, taste, vibe & view. Wednesday, February 29, 2012 – 7pm-11pmOsso Restaurant: 1000 NC Music Factory Blvd, Charlotte,•The Warm Up @ Crave Dessert BarThe Sigmas of Charlotte invite our brothers, sisters, friends and families to join us for our annual tournament warm up event. Free and open to the public. Doors open at 6:00 PM. Food provided while it lasts! Hosted by Detroit Lions and former Charlotte Panthers safety Bro. Chris “Hitman” Harris! Wednesday, February 29. 6:00PM-10:00PMCrave Dessert Bar: 500 West 5th St, Charlotte,•Pop Life – The Tournament Edition 2012 @ Phoenix & Republic“We’re Taking Over The Whole Block & The Only Way To Kick Off The Tournament” 9pm – 2am. 5 DJ’s – 2 Clubs/Buildings – 1 Tented Alley Free Admission | 25+ Suggested | Dress Code Enforced VIP Tables – Tami: or 980.322.9859Phoenix & Republic: District 300: 300 N. College St, Charlottethesolkitchen.comTHURSDAY, MARCH 1Day Events•CIAA Men’s Quarterfinals Men’s Games: 1:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m., 7:00 p.m. & 9:00 p.m. – Bounce TV & ESPN 3Time Warner Cable Arena: 333 E. Trade St,•CIAA Career Expo – College/Alumni 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Charlotte Convention Center: 501 S College St, Charlotte, NC•2012 CIAA Celebration @ 5th Element Thursday, March 1, 2012 at 1:00 PM Tables are ON Sale NOW!!! ***For VIP Tables, Call 704-605-4448*** For additional questions or details, call 704-335-00025th Element: 500 W 5th St Charlotte,•The 2nd Annual ALL-Tournament Alumni Mixer: Welcoming ALL CIAA Alumni and Celebrating 100 years of continued growth of the HBCU Family. Special guest, CIAA Commissioner. Start your CIAA off with old & new friends of some of the leading & best HBCU’s. Same place, same time, same price…..all that’s missing is you reppin’ your school. An Upscale Vibe With Live Jazz Band & DJ. Thursday, March 1, 2012 @ KALU. Doors Open 8:00PM. Portion of proceeds go to the CIAA Scholarship Fund.KALU: 505 East 6th Street Charlotte, NC1.877.993.8499 |•Welcome To CIAA “THE DMV TAKEOVER” Music By “DJ S&S” @ Mez in the EpiCentre. Thursday, March 1, 2012 at 9:00 PM. Tickets $30 in advance. Bottle service and VIP tables available. Email: Phone: 786-315-9484 or 757-328-4251 or 704-298-3006Mez: 210 E. Trade St, Charlottethedmvtakeover.eventbrite.comFRIDAY, MARCH 2• 12 pm til 6 pm Howl At The Moon 210 E. Trade St. (3rd Floor of Epicentre) Music by DJ Complete (Charlotte Bobcat’s Official DJ)•WBAV presents – “The Ultimate Day Party” Part 4.Join us for the 4th Annual WBAV Ultimate Day Party featuring DJ Chase! For VIP Tables, contact /Static/info_suite_wbav_event.html• CIAA Men’s SemifinalsMen’s Games: 7:00 p.m. & 9:00 p.m. – Bounce TV & ESPN 3Food Lion CIAA Women’s SemifinalsFood Lion’s CIAA Women’s Games: 1:00 p.m. & 3:00 p.m.Time Warner Cable Arena: 333 E. Trade St,• CIAA & V101.9 Greek Day Party Time: 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m Coyote Joe’s4621 Wilkinson Blvd, Charlotte,• Yolanda Adams Morning Show presented by Lowe’s Time: 5:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. Charlotte Convention Center: 501 S College St, Charlotte, NC – Hall A/B (in the Toyota Fan Experience)Brothers 4 Life Entertainment presents ENVY @ Enso Asian Bistro | Sushi Bar, Ground floor of the EpiCentre. Doors open from 12PM to 6PM. Music by DJ Paradime. Rooms and party packages available @ b4life-ent.comSATURDAY,  MARCH 3•DAYHEM! The All Day PartyFri, Mar 2 | Cosmos Cafe 300 N. College St | 12p – 2am | 21+ |The return of our signature 14-hour day party! Doors open at 12pm, and the party doesn’t end til 2am Saturday morning! This was one of the craziest party scenes last year, so we expect nothing less this year! Featuring 3 different dj including Power 98′s DJ Magic. Free before 1:00pm, and food•Digital Divas Presents: 7th Annual “Uptown Saturday” @ BlueThe best day party during CIAA. Strictly for the 30+ crowd. Great music, food and non-stop fun! Limited VIP Seating is available, reserve your space now! Saturday, March 3, 2012. 1pm-7pm.Blue Restaurant: Corner of 5th & College St, Charlotte,•CIAA 2012 Yacht Day PartyA party bus will pick up at Wal-Mart no later than 1:30 pm SHARP! The party buses will then leave Wal-Mart and head to King Point Marina.  Once we reach the Yacht the Real Party Begins! With DJ E- Money from Greenville SC will be on the 1′s and 2′s and making the Party Live once again! Once on the Yacht there will be a Cash Bar for your enjoyment! Hosted by InfinityEnt Modeling Company and The Hot Gyrlz. 1pm-6pmPickup at Wal-Mart: 3304 Eastway Dr, Charlotte,, MARCH 4•CIAA Toyota Fan ExperienceCIAA Champions Day @ Toyota Fan ExperienceTime: Noon – 5:00 p.m.CCC – Hall A/

Post Up: The Wolfpack Wows

by Abe Schwadron | @abe_squadI’ll be honest, I didn’t really know what to do with myself on Monday night, with no games to track. I took the opportunity to go to sleep prior to midnight for the first time in a long time. But enough about me…the second half of the season is officially underway. Just think—a few months ago we still didn’t know if this thing would ever start. And now we’ve got night after night of jam-packed hoops action to talk about. So with that, let’s get right to it. Feel free to start doing the math on Playoff seedings from here on out. I think the Wizards might finish in that No. 13 spot if we’re lucky!Celtics 86, Cavaliers 83A win’s a win, right? Well, maybe not for Celtics coach Doc Rivers, who said after this one, “It was a good way to end the losing streak, but we have to be better than that. That was awful.” Sheesh, Doc, take it easy! The win snapped a five-game losing streak for Boston, despite nearly blowing a 16-point second-half lead. Kyrie Irving put on yet another show, dropping 19 of his 24 points in the second half, even after leaving momentarily earlier in the game with an elbow contusion. Irving hit a pair of free throws to give Cleveland an 81-80 lead with 1:21 to play, but turned the ball over on the next possession and the Cs took the lead for good on a Ray Allen dunk with under 50 seconds remaining. Allen led Boston with 22 points and Kevin Garnett had 18, while Rajon Rondo had 11 assists but shot 0-6 with zero points. Also of note was rookie Tristan Thompson’s nice night off the bench for the Cavs (13 points, 10 boards in 27 minutes).Pacers 102, Warriors 78Indiana used a balanced attack (6 players in double figures) to put away Golden State early and improve to 22-12 on the year. The Pacers held the Warriors to 35 percent field goal shooting in the first half and took a 52-38 lead into the break. Danny Granger poured in 15 of his 25 points in the second half, as Indiana broke the game open with a 33-16 third quarter. With Stephen Curry sidelined due to a sprained right foot (will dude ever be fully, truly healthy?), rookie Charles Jenkins got the start alongside Monta Ellis in the Warriors backcourt, scoring just 2 points on 0-5 field goals in his 18 minutes. Ellis and Brandon Rush scored 14 points apiece to lead Golden State, but David Lee was the only other GSW player in double figures, with 12. For the Pacers, who went 13-deep on the night and racked up a nice little highlight reel, it was their fifth straight win. Roy Hibbert celebrated with this dunk.Sixers 97, Pistons 68Philly came in looking to snap a five-game losing streak, and didn’t take long to blow the Pistons out of their own building, on the way to improving to 21-14 on the season. The Sixers stifled Detroit all night long—Philly finished with 17 steals, 8 blocks and held the Pistons to 32 percent field goal shooting (20 percent on threes) while forcing 23 turnovers. Oh, and if you didn’t read the score, Detroit scored all of 68 points, tying the team’s season low. Yuck. The Sixers are now 3-0 against the Pistons this year after outscoring the Motor City’s bench 47 to 15, including 20 points for Thaddeus Young, Philly’s leading scorer on the night. Lou Williams chipped in 13 points and 7 dimes, and 6 players scored in double figures. Detroit got double-digit scoring nights from only Greg Monroe (20) and Rodney Stuckey (17).Bulls 99, Hornets 95New Orleans scored 13 straight points in the fourth quarter to take a 4-point lead with 1:26 to play, before Derrick Rose went into MVP mode to right the ship for Chicago and get the Bulls going on the right foot for the second half of the season. Rose scored 6 of his 32 points in the key late run for Chicago, including a jumper with 19 seconds to play that gave the Bulls the last lead of the game. He added 9 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 blocks (only 2 turnovers), while Joakim Noah hauled in 16 rebounds to go with his 15 points, and Luol Deng had 14 and 11. Rip Hamilton, who hadn’t played since late January, returned to the staring lineup and scored 5 points in his 17 minutes of action. The Bulls made just 3 of 18 shots from beyond the arc, but held New Orleans to 40 percent shooting. Chris Kaman (17 points, 11 rebounds, 5 assists) and Trevor Ariza (16/8/4) led the hapless Hornets, who are now 8-26.Rockets 88, Raptors 85Don’t look now, but the red-hot Rockets are winners of four straight and five of their last six, and now sit at No. 5 in the West at 21-14. Last night, Kyle Lowry dropped 26 and Luis Scola finished with 15 points and 10 rebounds, as Houston beat Toronto despite shooting just 39 percent from the field. Kevin Martin was cold yet again (3-14 shooting) but played 32 minutes and hustled his way to 14 points. Then again, it was KMart who opened the door for the Raptors by missing a free throw with 11 seconds left in the fourth quarter of a 3-point game. Luckily for Houston, Linas Kleiza bricked a last-second three-pointer and the Raptors fell to 10-24 on the year. DeMar Derozan scored 17 points and James Johnson had 16 for Toronto.Bucks 119, Wizards 118I refuse to make Ersan Ilyasova’s game-winning tip-in the “Moment of the Night” and I think you know why. I personally avoided this game—seriously, didn’t watch—and I think that was the right choice. Sure, the Wizards stormed all the way back from down 22 points at one point to take a 1-point advantage in the waning moments of the game, thanks to a John Wall runner with 6.8 ticks to play. But the Wiz Kids always find a way to lose. This time, it was on Ilyasova’s follow of a Brandon Jennings missed runner with 2.2 seconds left. On Washington’s next and final possession, Roger Mason Jr. traveled. Which is a sentence I never want to write again, for so many reasons. Let’s talk stats and move on: Mike Dunleavy led 7 Bucks in double figures with 28 points, while Jennings (14 points, 11 assists), Ilyasova (13 and 11 boards) and Drew Gooden (15 and 10) turned in double-doubles. Meanwhile, John Wall had 19 points and 15 assists and Trevor Booker went for 20 and 11 boards, while Javale McGee and Nick Young sat nailed to the bench for the second half.Nets 93, Mavericks 92Brook Lopez back? Brook Lopez back. 38 points in 36 minutes (season-highs) from the 7-footer in just his third game this season helped New Jersey pull the upset over the defending champions in Dallas. Lopez cashed a couple of free throws to give the Nets the lead with 42 seconds to play, and Dallas failed to get a good look on the game’s final possession. The Mavericks dropped to 21-14, thanks in large part to 36 percent field goal shooting and a general inability to stop Lopez down low. Deron Williams had just 12 points on 3-15 shooting, but handed out 12 assists (and called Lopez a “monster” in the game), and Kris Humphries had a double-double of his own with 10 points and 15 rebounds for the Nets, who move to 11-25 this season. Dirk Nowitzki scored 24 points to go with 10 rebounds, but when Brendan Haywood is Dallas’ next-highest point man with 18 (and 10 boards), the Mavs will almost certainly be in trouble. And they were, as the Nets were better in almost every statistical category. But hey, at least for all you Kris Humphries haters, Ian Mahinmi went ahead and delivered this facial.Kings 103, Jazz 96For at least one more night, the Kings’ three-guard lineup was a success. All five Sacramento starters scored in double figures, including 21 for Marcus Thornton, 18 for Isaiah Thomas and 13 for Tyreke Evans. But the dominant force all night for the Kings was DeMarcus Cousins, who racked up 22 points and 18 rebounds. Behind DMC, SacTown finished with 60 points in the paint (just 46 for the Jazz). Devin Harris had 18 points and 7 dimes, Josh Howard finished with 15 points and Gordon Hayward had 11 but missed two open threes in the last few minutes of the game as the Kings pulled away. On Utah’s last chance, down 4 points with under 20 seconds to play, Cousins took a charge on Josh Howard, and Sacramento iced the game at the charity stripe to take home their second straight win.Timberwolves 109, Clippers 97Man, that was fun. If you missed this one, figure out where you can watch a a replay of the fourth quarter. Just make sure you’re not a Clippers fan. For three quarters, things looked great for Lob Angeles, as Blake Griffin was in the midst of a monster 30-point performance and the Clips led by 3 heading into the fourth. That’s when reserve forwards Derrick Williams and Michael Beasley went absolutely nuts for the Timberwolves, with 13 apiece—first Williams rattled off 10 in a row, then Beaz took over and poured in a double-digit run of his own. They both scored 27 in the game. How hot were they? Kevin Love needed to score just 10 points, and took the entire final quarter off to rest some sore ribs after taking a shot to the gut in the third quarter. Before JJ Barea missed a 3-pointer with 1:30 left and Minnesota leading by 14, the Wolves were a perfect 10-10 from the field in the fourth. Minnesota got an NBA season-high 72 points from their bench as a whole, and used a crazy 34-11 run through the final quarter to pull away. The wild finish ruined a 27-point, 6-dime night from Chris Paul, and 14 points, 14 rebounds and 4 blocks by DeAndre Jordan. But the Wolves shot better than 51 percent on the night, and Caron Butler had a forgettable night for the Clippers, not helping much with his 1-10 shooting. His only 2 points came with 3:30 to play in the game.Lines of the Night: With all due respect to Brook Lopez’s 38 points in New Jersey’s win over Dallas, what I witnessed in the fourth quarter of the Wolves-Clips game gives this award to Derrick Williams and Michael Beasley, with 27 each on a combined 20-25 shooting from the field, including 7-7 from the 3-point line. And that fourth was just insane. Ridiculous.Dunks of the Night: Paul George off an inbounds pass, the Nets double-oop on the break, DeMar Derozan bangs it home hard and one from Javale McGee that I’m not sure even counts as a dunk, but that looked pretty cool.Funny of the Night: The Sixers play a prank on their rookies. Those young guys, so eager!Tonight: A dozen games on Wednesday, starting with Thunder at Sixers (and for Wiz-Magic for torture-seekers) and wrapping up with some great matchups later in the night. They include Mavs-Grizzlies, Bulls-Spurs, Blazers-Nuggets and the inevitably entertaining Wolves vs. Lakers game to wrap things up out West. Should be a late night, but a good one. Catch you guys in the A.M. 104 Responses to “Post Up: The Wolfpack Wows”

Michigan voters: ‘It’s finally starting to feel real’

BERRIEN COUNTY – Mitt Romney walked away a double winner Tuesday night in the presidential primaries in Michigan and Arizona. But most of the evening it was too close to call in Michigan.CLICK HERE to see the Michigan Primary resultsAs expected, it was a battle between Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum. Romeny’s roots are in Michigan, his father was governor there. But some said Santorum needed this win to keep his momentum going for Super Tuesday next week. So what was at stake for Michigan voters on Tuesday? While keeping November in mind, some said these results will dictate their immediate future.”It’s finally starting to feel real,” said a Berrien County voter on Tuesday.For some Berrien County voters, it’s their first taste of the election season.”There are so many candidates, it’s been a long battle and we need to get it settled,” said voter Jenny Bishop.Candidates Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum campaigned in Michigan on Tuesday – they were neck-and-neck as results filtered in throughout the evening.Newt Gingrich spent the day securing support in his home state of Georgia and Ron Paul tackled Virginia.”Politics in Washington are getting old and people are noticing that and want something different,” said student voter August Garritano.Voters in Michigan said they’re on a mission and each one marking their ballot is looking for some kind of change.”In a lot of ways were hoping to find someone to beat Obama,” Bishop said.”I went to a Ron Paul rally yesterday,” Garritano said.”I didn’t vote for the one that was born and raised here,” Ron Bishop, a Berrien County voter said.Although it was the Republican primaries, it was an open primary – voters could request any ballot regardless of their party registration.”Maybe one candidate speaks to you, maybe you’re tired of the way things are in politics or Washington and you should be able to change your mind and not be locked in to vote for a certain party,” Garritano said.For most of the day, precincts in Berrien County were reporting a low voter turnout. Some said that better change by November.“If there’s any possibility of wanting change, then we have to be the people making the difference,” said voter Lori Summer.One week from today is Super Tuesday. More delegates can be won on that day than on any other single day of the primary calendar.Many said Tuesday night’s results set the stage for what may happen next week.