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New Orleans waives Dairis Bertans after 12 games

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The New Orleans Pelicans roster is a little crowded at the moment. In an attempt to fix that, they have waived wing player Dairis Bertans.

Dairis Bertans got his first taste of the NBA last season when the Pelicans signed him midway through the year.

With the team struggling, he managed to get some playing time and averaged 13.9 minutes over 12 games. However, with that time, Bertans shot just 25.5 percent from the field and 29.4 percent from three.

Bertans ran into a bit of a problem this offseason when the Pelicans started loading up their roster. Suddenly, New Orleans didn’t seem to have a place for him anymore.

With that in mind, it’s not much of a surprise that the 29-year-old was waived. Although he definitely was an intriguing player, it just didn’t work out in New Orleans.

The good news is, it appears Dairis Bertans has already found a new home.

Meanwhile, the Pelicans still have a little bit to figure out, as their roster is very crowded.

First-round picks Zion Williamson, Jaxson Hayes and Nickeil Alexander-Walker are shoe-ins. Meanwhile, second-round pick Marcos Louzada Silva will likely be on the roster in some capacity as well.

Veteran mainstay Jrue Holiday is a lock, as well as Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram and Josh Hart.

Free agent signings JJ Redick and Derrick Favors will obviously be on the roster, with the returning Jhalil Okafor and Darius Miller on the team too.

That’s when things get murky though. Christian Wood should be on the team, as should Frank Jackson and Kenrich Williams. What about E’Twaun Moore?

This is a very full roster at the moment. It’s not a big knock on Dairis Bertans that he had to go– he was simply the odd man out.

Steve Clifford, Nikola Vucevic, Terrence Ross



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Online brain games can extend in-game ‘cognitive youth’ into old age, study says

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Online brain games can extend in-game 'cognitive youth' into old age, UCI-led study says
“The brain is not a muscle, but like our bodies, if we work out and train it, we can improve our mental performance,” says the study’s lead author, Mark Steyvers, a UCI professor of cognitive sciences. Credit: Steve Zylius, UCI

A University of California, Irvine-led study has found that online brain game exercises can enable people in their 70s and even 80s to multitask cognitively as well as individuals 50 years their junior. This is an increasingly valuable skill, given today’s daily information onslaught, which can divide attention and be particularly taxing for older adults.

“The brain is not a muscle, but like our bodies, if we work out and train it, we can improve our mental performance,” said lead author Mark Steyvers, a UCI professor of cognitive sciences. “We discovered that people in the upper age ranges who completed specific training tasks were able to beef up their brain’s ability to switch between tasks in the game at a level similar to untrained 20- and 30-year-olds.”

The findings, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, underscore the cognitive cost of multitasking, which dilutes function by splitting focus, as well as the ways in which people across the lifespan can overcome the brain drain brought on by both the increasingly cluttered multimedia environment and the natural aging process.

For the study, Steyvers and his colleagues partnered with Lumosity, an online platform that offers a variety of daily brain training games. They focused on data from “Ebb and Flow”—a task-switching game that challenges the brain’s ability to shift between cognitive processes interpreting shapes and movement. Of the millions of people who played the game between 2012 and 2017, researchers randomly sampled the performance of about 1,000 users within two categories: those who ranged in age from 21 to 80 and had completed fewer than 60 training sessions; and adults 71 to 80 who had logged at least 1,000 sessions.

They found that the majority of older and highly practiced players were able to match or exceed the performance of younger users who had not played very much. Any lead seniors had, though, significantly declined after the 21- to 30-year-olds had completed more than 10 practice sessions.

“Medical advances and improved lifestyles are allowing us to live longer,” Steyvers said. “It’s important to factor brain health into that equation. We show that with consistent upkeep, cognitive youth can be retained well into our golden years.”


New app tests how mood affects cognitive performance


More information:
Mark Steyvers el al., “A large-scale analysis of task switching practice effects across the lifespan,” PNAS (2019). www.pnas.org/cgi/doi/10.1073/pnas.1906788116

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University of California, Irvine

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Online brain games can extend in-game ‘cognitive youth’ into old age, study says (2019, August 19)
retrieved 20 August 2019
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