Category Archives: The Mercury News

George Kittle doesn’t care what you think. He just wants to play football.

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It is too early to function. The sun isn’t even up, not even close. Garrett Celek, the San Francisco 49ers’ veteran tight end, barely wills himself into his car, his body aching from yet another loss two days earlier. Santa Clara lies completely still on this mid-November morning as Celek’s white Lexus SUV begins to roll forward.

But then up ahead … movement. Tons of movement.

The SUV’s headlights reveal a large man flailing next to the apartment complex’s exit gate. His hips rock back and forth in an apparent attempt at rhythm. His arms swing wildly from side to side. All the while, his gaze remains fixed on Celek’s face.

George Kittle is doing the Fortnite floss dance.

Beaming like he just won the Super Bowl, Kittle hops into the passenger seat and serenades his groggy teammate with some song or another. It doesn’t matter which one. What matters is that Kittle will spend yet another day shining his inextinguishable light upon a 49ers season largely mired in darkness.

“When I was first getting to know him I probably thought it was fake at first how happy he was all the time,” Celek said. “But then I realized, ‘No, this is how this guy is 24/7.’” Continue reading George Kittle doesn’t care what you think. He just wants to play football.

Kevin Durant gazes into his potential Chase Center future: ‘The possibilities’

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Kevin Durant strolled across the dirt floor at Chase Center on Friday afternoon, his rented size-18 work boots slowing to a halt near a spot that approximated mid-court. Then the Warriors’ superstar forward looked toward the rafters, mouth agape, and contemplated his future.

Durant signed a two-year, $61.5 million deal with Golden State this summer, but he carries a player option for the 2019-20 season. That option allows the nine-time All-Star to either move elsewhere or ink another deal with the Warriors.

For now, though, Durant brushed aside questions about his future, instead leaving the phalanx of reporters and team dignitaries encircling him with a cryptic thought as he gazed upward.

“My imagination is going wild right now,” he said. “The possibilities.” Continue reading Kevin Durant gazes into his potential Chase Center future: ‘The possibilities’

This East Bay teenager is headed to Churchill Downs seeking a victory

[READ FEATURE IN THE MERCURY NEWS]

John Del Secco squeezed his brown cowboy boot firmly onto the gas pedal.

The 18-year-old’s Ford F150 — silver and black, the color scheme of his favorite football team — bolted out of Danville’s sleepy suburbs and made a hard turn westward onto Highway 24.

It was 4:15 a.m. on a Saturday, and Del Secco’s mind was already spinning. His horses awaited his care. They required new grain, water, medication; bandages needed changing, legs needed rub-downs, stalls needed mucking.

Then he let his thoughts slip further down the road, to the raucous culmination of so many mornings like this one.

“I’m a small-town boy going to the big city, I guess,” Del Secco said.

He was not referring to Oakland. Continue reading This East Bay teenager is headed to Churchill Downs seeking a victory