73 Seconds…

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1.

Drop In The Bucket…

Did we forget about Klay?  As Draymond rises and Steph improves beyond icons, we seem to have forgotten about Klay.  Thompson dropped 45 on the Mavericks last night, getting payback for one of their losses, by 20pts – Is Carlyle now on Hot-Seat?  ESPN’s Ethan Sherwood Strauss expands on Kerr’s thoughts on Klay: “…he’s fine taking a back seat to Steph. It works well. They obviously play well together, but I think there always has to be a little bit of a pecking order in the NBA. Klay’s personality suits that second option perfectly.”  Thompson is a quiet all-star that fits perfectly with Golden State.

2.

Spurred On…

What did we think they were gonna do?  Quit?  Lose by 30 and announce the season was over?  So while Golden State came back down to earth and beat the Mavs by twenty, The Spurs treated Houston like a birthday party and blew them out by 31.  So you can say the Spurs bounced back and showed Houston how far away from contending they still are, plus 5 more things.  You think that at some point, while Aldridge is getting better and showing chemistry, he’ll have to be less passive.  If Aldridge can be more like young Dirk and drive to the basket, the way the Spurs play would make more noise in the playoffs.

3.

Started From the Bottom, Now We Here…

The 65th NBA All-Star Game will be the first All-Star Game held outside of the U.S. The game will be seen by fans in more than 200 countries and territories and will be heard in more than 40 languages. TNT will televise the All-Star Game in the U.S. for the 14th consecutive year, marking Turner Sports’ 31st year of NBA All-Star coverage.

…And all of that is nice.  The Game is even on Valentine’s Day, awwww.  So who will be coaching the Eastern Conference All-Stars?  The answer is a guy who just started, Tyronn Lue – because he deserves the honor.  So tune in to TNT at 8 p.m. ET on Sunday, Feb. 14 from Air Canada Centre in Toronto, and watch history in the making – just make sure you take the over.

HicksJasoHill

4.

Under-rated…

The winter that was — and, in some cases, still is — defined by the nine-figure notables (David Price, Zack Greinke, Jason Heyward, Chris Davis, Justin Upton and Jordan Zimmermann), some blockbuster swaps (Aroldis Chapman, Craig Kimbrel, Todd Frazier, Shelby Miller and Andrelton Simmons, to name a few), some international intrigue (Kenta Maeda and Byung Ho Park), the rewarded hand-wringing of the Mets faithful (welcome back, Yo), the limits-testing patience required of the likes of Dexter Fowler, Ian Desmond, Howie Kendrick, etc., and, as usual, the art of surprise.

Lost in all that discussion, though, are the people on the periphery. So let’s round up some of them here with the best acquisitions nobody’s talking about (until now)……

+ Keep Reading: The 10 best MLB pickups nobody is talking about.

5.

Might As Well Jump…

From Deadspin: The second period of the Predators’ 2-1 win over the Flames featured a strange moment, as Flames defenseman Dennis Wideman absolutely leveled linesman Don Henderson on his way back to the bench. The hit sure looks intentional, but Wideman had just been checked hard into the boards, and looked pretty woozy sitting on the bench.

Wideman wasn’t penalized, and both he and Henderson stayed in the game. Afterwards he told reporters that he apologized to Henderson on the ice, and that the hit was entirely accidental.

Thankfully Wideman recieved treatment for a concussion before returning to the ice, as per NHL protocol. Of course that protocol is to pop 2 Percocets and wash them down with a can of LaBatts, but still.

6.

If a Tree Falls…

Further proof that the NFL tries too hard to make you care about a game that the players don’t care about, unless your these guys in the picture…I give you the 2016 NFL ProBowl Draft – Are You Not Entertained?!!  Is there some possibility of interest?  Sure, I’m curious about Julio Jones and Russell Wilson on the same team.  But more to the point, are you gonna play it on DraftKings, or bet the Under?  Before you do read more about the drafting of Team Rice and Team Irvin here, from ABC News:

+ Keep Reading: Russell Wilson, Eli Manning top picks in 2016 Pro Bowl draft

7.

A Man Named $uh…

We’ve talked a lot about this guy and how he was not worth the scratch Miami paid him.  Word is, Suh’s monster deal is already causing cap issues for the Dolphins.  

8.

Aloha…

Hawaii’s attorney general has issued an opinion that says daily fantasy is illegal gambling under state law, becoming the umpteenth state attorney general to do so. [Honolulu Star-Advertiser]


73 seconds.

30 years ago today, that was all we saw of the Space Shuttle Challenger.  I remember exactly where I was and still I am reminded by the thoughts that went thru my head of disbelief.  Being at school, being told over the speaker system what happened, hoping the falling cabin contained life…still is hard to believe that 7 people lost their lives because of an O-ring.  18 years and 6 days later there was the second shuttle disaster, when Endeavour disintegrated in re-entry over Texas and Louisiana.  Now, no more shuttles…Prometheus stole fire to provide us a spark, to generate creativity and explore – what shall we do if we never venture out into the unknown?  Bless those that took the chance to peel back the curtain of the great beyond.

STS-51-L.svgSTS-107 Flight Insignia.svg

 

Getting Smart With #NBA + #NHL NEWS o’Day (11-5-15)

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1. NBA Bounce House

You wondered how long it was going to take before some #NBA player became fed-up with those sleeved-uniforms and for LeBron, he wasn’t having it anymore.  It’s like when Costanza made the Yankees wear all-cotton uniforms – #WorstIdeaEver.  Hopefully soon, Mr. Silver will realize these too were a turr-able idea and give the shooters their free-range back in their shoulders.

Curry continues to roll in the early going

Stephen Curry scored 31 points and made seven three-pointers in the Warriors’ 112-108 win over the Clippers on Wednesday. Curry has scored 179 points in his five games played this season. Over the last 40 seasons, the only other players to score as many points as Curry through their first five games of a season are Adrian Dantley (1980-81) and Michael Jordan, who did it three times (1986-87, 1989-90 and 1991-92).

Curry’s 28 three-pointers made are by far the most any player has made through five games of a season since the NBA instituted the three-point shot in 1979-80. The previous high was 21 by Ryan Anderson (2011-12), O.J. Mayo (2012-13) and Trevor Ariza (2014-15).


Howard is perfect from the field

Dwight Howard went 10-for-10 from the field and hauled down 14 rebounds in the Rockets’ overtime win over the Magic on Wednesday night. It marked the second time that Howard has shot 10-for-10 or better from the field in a game, having also done that on February 24, 2010 (11-for-11), ironically while he was with the Magic against the Rockets. The only other players to attempt 10 or more shots from the field and make all of them multiple times in the shot-clock era are Wilt Chamberlain (8 times), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (twice), Bernard King (twice) and Karl Malone (twice).


Blazers’ backcourt has a big night in UtahAltX.Logo.white

Damian Lillard scored 35 points and starting backcourt mate C.J. McCollum chipped in with 27 in the Blazers’ win in Utah on Wednesday night. It’s the first time in nearly 20 years that Portland’s starting backcourt each produced at last 25 points in a road game, since Rod Strickland (32) and Clyde Drexler (30) did it against the SuperSonics in a losing effort in Seattle on January 15, 1995.


Suns win with a team effort

Eric Bledsoe led the Suns with 19 points and was the team’s leader in assists with eight in a 118-97 win over Sacramento on Wednesday night. It marked the most points the Suns have scored in a game in which they did not have a single player score 20 points or hand out 10 assists since December 8, 1994, when they defeated the Nets by a final of 133-106 with Wayman Tisdale and Dan Majerle producing a team high 19 points and Elliot Perry leading the way with nine assists.


Beal’s three-pointer beats Spurs

Bradley Beal‘s three-pointer with less than a second remaining in the fourth quarter gave the Wizards a 102-99 victory over the Spurs on Wednesday night. Beal is the first player to win a game with a three-pointer with less than a second remaining in the fourth quarter or overtime against San Antonio since the Mavericks’ Steve Nash made a shot from beyond the arc with 0.6 seconds left in overtime in a 126-123 Dallas win on December 26, 2001.


Pacers frontcourt controls the boards in win over Celtics

The Pacers starting frontcourt, Lavoy Allen (11 rebounds), Paul George (10) and Jordan Hill (10) each recorded double-digits in rebounds in the Pacers’ 100-98 win over the Celtics on Wednesday. Indiana received 10 or more rebounds from each of their frontcourt starters in only one game in the previous six seasons combined (2009-10 to 2014-15), on January 8, 2013 (George, David West and Roy Hibbert).AltX.Logo.white


Nets fall to 0-5

The Nets lost their fifth consecutive game to open the 2015-16 season, dropping a 101-87 decision to the Hawks. Brooklyn has lost by margins of 15, 17, 10, 7 and 14 points in their five defeats. The only other teams in NBA history to lose each of their first five games of a season, all by more than six points, after appearing in the playoffs the previous season, are the 1966-67 Baltimore Bullets (first five games) and 1957-58 Minneapolis Lakers (first six games).


Cavs win by 10 after trailing by 15

The Cavaliers overcame a 15-point deficit and defeated the Knicks by a score of 96-86 on Wednesday night. It marked the first time Cleveland won a game by a double-digit margin after trailing by at least 15 points since November 3, 2009, when the Cavs overcame a 18-point deficit and beat Washington by a score of 102-90.


Raptors produce road wins over Western foes on consecutive nights

One night after beating the Mavericks in Dallas, the Raptors (5-0) beat the Thunder in Oklahoma City on Wednesday night to improve upon the best start in franchise history. It’s the third time since the start of the 2014-15 season that Toronto has won road games against Western Conference opponents on consecutive days, having won games in Sacramento and Utah last December 2nd and 3rd; and against the Clippers in Los Angeles and Nuggets in Denver on December 27th and 28th. No other Eastern Conference team has more than two sets of back to back road wins on consecutive days against teams from the West over that span, and the only other East teams that have done that more than once are Atlanta and Detroit.


2. Ice-Ice Baby

Burmistrov’s late goal wins it for the Jets

Winnipeg’s Alexander Burmistrov scored a tiebreaking goal with 2:05 left to play in the third period and his goal was the game-winner for the Jets in their 4-2 victory over the Maple Leafs in Toronto. It was the second time this season that a Jets player scored a go-ahead goal in the final three minutes of the third period; Dustin Byfuglien snapped a tie with 88 seconds remaining in regulation time in Winnipeg’s home game against the Flames on October 16. The Jets are the only NHL team to have scored more than one such goal this season. Before this season, the Jets had tallied only three tiebreaking goals in the last three minutes of the third period since the team relocated to Winnipeg from Atlanta in 2011.


Blues win after allowing five goals in the first

Vladimir Tarasenko’s goal with 1:06 remaining in overtime earned the Blues a 6-5 win over the Blackhawks in Chicago, a game in which St. Louis trailed, 5-2, at the end of the first period. It was the 11th time in NHL history that a team won a game in which it allowed five first-period goals, and it was the first such win in Blues history. Before Wednesday’s victory by St. Louis, the last time an NHL team won a game in that manner was when the Lightning beat the Flyers, 8-7, in Philadelphia on November 18, 2010, after Tampa Bay trailed, 5-4, at the first intermission.


Fehr nets another short-handed goal

Eric Fehr’s short-handed goal midway through the third period gave the Penguins a 3-0 lead in a game they would go on to win 3-2 in Vancouver. Fehr also tallied a short-handed goal in his Penguins debut on October 31 against the Maple Leafs. He is the first player in NHL history to score a short-handed goal in each of his first two games with a team.

SOURCE: Elias Sports Bureau

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#ElectionDay #NBA + #NHL News & Notes

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1. NBA Bounce House

Duncan sets NBA record for wins with one team

Tim Duncan scored 16 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in the Spurs‘ 94-84 victory over the Knicks on Monday. Duncan has 954 regular-season wins with the Spurs, passing John Stockton (953 with Jazz) for the most victories by a player with one team in NBA history. Rounding out the top three is Stockton’s teammate Karl Malone, who had 919 wins during his tenure with Utah.

Duncan has a 954-381 (.715) regular-season record with the Spurs. Among the 10 players with at least 700 wins with one team, only one has a higher winning percentage with that team: Duncan’s teammate Tony Parker. With Monday’s win, Parker improved to 728-284 (.719) in his Spurs career.


25,000 points for James

With his 22 points scored in the Cavaliers‘ win on Monday, LeBron James reached 25,001 regular-season points in the NBA, in his 915th career game. James is the 20th player in NBA history to score 25,000 points; only three of those players reached that mark in as few games as he did. Ahead of him on the list are Wilt Chamberlain (691 games), Michael Jordan (782), and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (889).

James also added 11 assists in Monday’s game, becoming the sixth player to record a double-double in the game in which he surpassed 25,000 points, joining Chamberlain (who had a triple double when he reached that mark in 1968), Jerry West (1973), Abdul-Jabbar (1980), Karl Malone (1997), and Tim Duncan (2014).


Westbrook joins elite groupAltX.Logo.white

Russell Westbrook totaled 25 points, 11 assists, and eight rebounds in the Thunder’s loss on Monday. Westbrook has 121 points, 37 assists, and 30 rebounds in four games this season. Only two other players in NBA history had at least 120 points, 30 assists, and 30 rebounds over their first four games of a season, and each did so twice: Oscar Robertson (1961-62 and 1966-67 seasons) and Larry Bird (1984-85 and 1987-88 seasons).


Harden leads the way for Rockets

James Harden scored 37 points as the Rockets earned their first win of the season, a 110-105 triumph over the Thunder. Dwight Howard had the second-highest points output for Houston in Monday’s game, with 16 points. Last season, Harden played in 12 games in which he scored at least 20 more points than any of his teammates. Only one other player had at least five such games in the 2014-15 campaign: Russell Westbrook, with eight.


Warriors win big after trailing at the end of the opening quarter

The Warriors defeated the Grizzlies, 119-69, on Monday after trailing by one point at the end of the first quarter. Golden State is just the second team in NBA history to win a game by at least 50 points after being outscored in the opening quarter. The first such instance occurred on February 1, 1983, when the Bulls came out victorious over the Rockets, 129-76, after also trailing by a point at the end of the first.


Curry has another big quarter

Stephen Curry scored 30 points, including 21 in the third quarter, of the Warriors’ 119-69 victory over the Grizzlies. It’s the second straight game in which Curry scored at least 20 points in a quarter, having netted 28 points in the third period of the Warriors’ win over the Pelicans on Saturday. The last player with a 20-point quarter in consecutive games was Jamal Crawford in January 2007. Crawford had 23 fourth-quarter points on January 24 against the Suns and had two 20-point quarters in his next game on January 26 versus the Heat (20 points in second quarter and 23 in third).


2. ‘Ockey News – The Quick and the Dead

Toews and Kane find success against Quick

Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane each scored a goal for the Blackhawks as they posted a 4-2 victory over the Kings which ended L.A.’s winning streak at seven games. Toews has scored 11 goals in his 21 regular-season games against Quick, which ties him with Radim Vrbata for the third-most goals versus the two-time Stanley Cup-winning netminder, behind Shane Doan and Patrick Marleau (12 each). Kane scored only one goal in his first 13 regular-season games versus Quick but he’s tallied seven goals in eight regular-season games against him since then.


Lupul nets a pair in Leafs’ victory

Joffrey Lupul scored two goals in the Maple Leafs’ 4-1 win over the Dallas Stars’ in Toronto. It was Lupul’s first multiple-goal game since the last time the Stars played at Air Canada Centre, a 5-3 Maple Leafs victory on Dec. 2, 2014 in which Lupul notched the final two Toronto goals. Lupul finished the 2014-15 season by scoring only one goal in his last 30 games but he’s the Maple Leafs’ leading scorer with five goals this season.

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Game 7’s are DiRTy

NHL

Two Game 7s in the NHL Conference Finals

The Blackhawks forced a decisive seventh game in the Western Conference Final with their 5-2 win over the Ducks in Game 6 on Wednesday, after the Rangers did the same in the Eastern Conference Final with their Game 6 victory over the Lightning on Tuesday. This will be the third time in NHL history that both Semi-Final or Conference Final series in one playoff year went seven games, It happened first in 1964, when Toronto beat Montreal and Detroit topped Chicago in seven-game Semi-Finals, and again in 2000 when New Jersey edged Philadelphia and Dallas got by Colorado in the Conference Finals.

nullKeith notches three assists in the second period

Duncan Keith assisted on all three of the Blackhawks’ second-period goals in Game 6 of the Western Conference Final. Keith is the fourth player in Blackhawks history to register three assists in one period of a playoff game. The other Chicago players to do that are Pat Stapleton in 1973 (Game 1 of the Stanly Cup Final at Montreal, first period), Chris Chelios in 1992 (Game 2 of Conference Final vs. Edmonton, third period) and Patrick Kane in 2014 (Game 5 of Conference Final vs. Los Angeles, first period). Kane was the last player on any NHL team to accomplish that feat before Keith.


 

NBA

40 year Drought is over

Stephen Curry registered 26 points, eight rebounds, six assists and five steals in the Warriors’ series clinching win over the Rockets on Wednesday night. The only other players to produce at least 25 points, five rebounds, five assists and five steals in a playoff series clinching win are Michael Jordan (1990 vs. Philadelphia),Hersey Hawkins (1991 vs. Milwaukee) and Scottie Pippen (1991 vs. the Lakers).

Both NBA Conference Finals end in five or less

The Warriors ended the Western Conference Final series in five games with a win over the Rockets on Wednesday night, a day after the Cavaliers completed a sweep of the Eastern Conference Finals with a victory over the Hawks. This marks only the second time in the last 29 years that both NBA Conference Finals series ended in five or fewer games. The only other time that happened over that span was in 2011.


 

MLB

nullThor and the Mets

Noah Syndergaard did not allow a run while pitching one out into the eighth inning and had a big day at the plate going 3-for-3 with a home run in the Mets’ 7-0 blanking of the Phillies on Wednesday afternoon. The only other rookies to hurl at least seven shutout innings while lashing out three or more hits including a home run are Colorado’s Jason Jennings, who pitched a shutout and had three hits and a homer against the Mets on August 23, 2001 and the Dodgers’ Larry Sherry, who did not allow a run over 8.2 innings and recorded three hits and a long ball against the Cardinals on August 15, 1959.

nullThe Yankee nightmare continues as A-Rod passes Gehrig…..and Thome

Alex Rodriguez hit a go-ahead three-run home run in the fourth inning in the Yankees’ 4-2 win over the Royals on Wednesday afternoon. Rodriguez’s blast, the 50th of his career against Kansas City, not only allowed him to break Lou Gehrig’s American League record for career RBIs, it also set the mark for most career home runs hit against the Royals, a record he shared with Jim Thome entering Wednesday’s action.

nullCruz goes the dynamite

Nelson Cruz broke a scoreless tie with a two-out, three-run home run in the top of the ninth inning in Seattle’s 3-0 win over the Rays in Tampa on Wednesday afternoon. Cruz became only the second player in Mariners’ history to break a scoreless with a two-out home run in the ninth inning or later, joining Logan Morrison who went deep with two out and two-men on in the top of the ninth against the Angels in a 3-1 Seattle win on September 18, 2014.

Pirate pitching stifle another opponent

The Pirates defeated the Marlins by a score of 5-2 on Wednesday extending their winning streak to six games. Pittsburgh has allowed two or fewer runs in each of the six wins during its streak. The only other time the Pirates have won six consecutive games, while allowing two or fewer runs in each game, over the last 38 seasons was in 1992, when Pittsburgh had a nine-game streak of that kind.

nullKipnis loves batting first

Jason Kipnis went 3-for-5 in the Indians’ 12-3 win over the Rangers on Wednesday afternoon. It’s the eighth time that Kipnis has had three hits in a game in this month. Prior to Kipnis, the last Indians player to record at least eight three-hit games in a calendar month was Kenny Lofton, who had eight in August of 1995. It is also the highest total in a calendar month by a second baseman since San Francisco’s Jeff Kent had eight games with at least three hits in June 2002.

nullLaRoche in extra innings

Adam LaRoche singled in the go-ahead run in the top of the 10th inning leading the White Sox to a 5-3 win over the Blue Jays on Wednesday afternoon. LaRoche’s 855 career RBIs ranks 20th among active major league players, but his 26 RBIs in extra-innings are tied with Carlos Beltran for the fifth most among current players behind Albert Pujols (35), Alex Rodriguez (33), Ryan Howard (29) and Matt Kemp(27).

nullAnother Arenado

Nolan Arenado drove in three runs in the Rockies’ 6-4 win over the Reds on Wednesday afternoon. It’s the sixth time that Arenado has had at least three RBIs in a game this season, tied with Paul Goldschmidt for the major-league lead in that category. Prior to this season, Arenado drove in at least three runs in a game only five times in the 244 major-league games he had played in during his career.

nullPanik at the Disco

Joe Panik hit a two-run home run in the fifth inning giving the Giants a 2-1 lead in a game they would go on to win 3-1 on Wednesday afternoon. It’s the first time Panik had multiple RBIs in a game this season. He entered Wednesday’s action with the most games played (44) among players that did not have a multiple-RBI game this season.

nullFinally Hicks

Aaron Hicks hit a two-run home run in the fourth inning in the Twins’ 6-4 win over the Red Sox on Wednesday afternoon. Hicks entered the contest on a streak of 71 consecutive plate appearances without driving in a run, which was the third longest current streak for any major-league position player entering Wednesday’s action, behind Mike Baxter (103) and Coco Crisp (72).

A’s struggle in close game again at home

The A’s dropped a 3-2 decision to the Tigers in Oakland on Wednesday afternoon. Oakland has now lost each of its last 12 home games that were decided by one run dating back to last season. It’s the longest such streak since 1894, when the Cubs had a 12-game streak of that kind and the National League Louisville club (spanning 1893-1894) had a 13-game streak.

nullScherzer loves the Nat’l League

Max Scherzer hurled seven shutout innings and struck out 13 in the Nationals’ 3-0 win over the Cubs at Wrigley Field on Wednesday. The only other visiting pitchers to not allow a run while registering at least 13 strikeouts at Wrigley Field are Cincinnati’s Ewell Blackwell (1948), the Dodgers’ Sandy Koufax (1961), Cincinnati’s Jim Maloney (1963), Atlanta’s John Smoltz (1996), San Francisco’s Jason Schmidt(2004) and Milwaukee’s Mike Fiers (2014).

nullHeyward homers

Jason Heyward led off the bottom of the ninth inning with a game-tying home run and the Cardinals scored another run later in the inning to defeat the Diamondbacks on Wednesday night. It was Heyward’s 89th career home run but only the third of which came in the ninth inning or later with his team trailing and either tied the game or put his team ahead. The only other times he did that were on April 20, 2010 and August 17, 2013.

Tuesday Dregs

Did you know LeBron James finished with 37 points, 18 rebounds and 13 assists, and scored game 3’s last five points over the final 40 seconds as the Cavaliers moved out to a three-games-to none series lead with a 114-111 overtime win over the Hawks on Sunday? No other player has ever reached all of those totals (37 points, 18 rebounds and 13 assists) in an NBA playoff game.

James earned the 12th triple-double of his playoff career, surpassing Jason Kidd’s total of 11 and moving into second place all-time, behind Magic Johnson, who had 30. James achieved the triple-double with his tenth assist with 3:49 remaining in the third quarter. No NBA player had produced a triple-double within the first three quarters of a playoff game since Chris Paul, playing for the New Orleans Hornets against the Lakers, did that in 2011. No NBA player had earned a triple-double so early in a game since 2009, when Rajon Rondo achieved it with 6:15 to play in the third quarter, playing for the Celtics against the Bulls.

James finished with 37 field-goal attempts, the most he has ever taken in any NBA game, during either the regular season or the playoffs. He missed all nine of his first-quarter field-goal attempts, becoming the first player to take that many shots in the first quarter of a playoff game and to miss them all since Tim Duncan went 0-for-10 from the field in the first quarter of Game 1 of a Western Conference Semifinal series against the Lakers in 2002. LeBron also missed his first shot in the second quarter, becoming the second player in this year’s playoffs to miss his first 10 field-goal attempts of a game. (Isaiah Thomas missed his first 10 shots from the floor in Game 4 of a first-round series against Cleveland.) Among other players who have started past playoff games with double-digit streak of misses: Duncan (twice), Carmelo Anthony (twice), Ray Allen and Tony Parker.

James Harden scored 45 points, grabbed nine rebounds and handed out five assists as the Rockets avoided a sweep with a 128-112 victory over the Warriors. The 45 points is the third-most ever scored by a player for a team that was down, three-games-to-none, in a playoff series, behind the 51 points scored by the Warriors’ Sleepy Floyd in 1987 against the Lakers and the 46 points scored by Miami’s Dwyane Wade against the Celtics in 2010.

Only one other player scored at least 40 points, grabbed at least nine rebounds and handed out at least five assists in a game for a team that was down, three-games-to-none, in a playoff series: Tom Chambers for the Suns against the Lakers in 1989 (41 points, 13 rebounds, 6 assists).

The Warriors (20-for-46) and Rockets (17-for-32) combined for 37 three-point field goals made and 78 three-pointers attempted. The 37 three-pointers made were the most ever in an NBA playoff game, breaking the record of 33 set by the Seattle (20) and Houston (13) in Game 2 in 1996; and the 78 shots from beyond the arc were also the most ever in an NBA playoff game, breaking the mark of 70 by Oklahoma City (35) and Houston (35) in Game 2 in 2013.

The Warriors are only the second team, regular season or playoffs, to lose a game in which they made 20 three-pointers. The Nets lost to the Nuggets on Jan. 11, 2012 despite making 20 shots from beyond the arc. NBA teams that made 20 or more three-pointers are 15-1 in the regular season and now 2-1 in the playoffs.


Ben Bishop posted a 2-0 win over the Rangers in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Final, after giving up five goals in both Game 3 (a 6-5 overtime victory) and Game 4 (a 5-1 loss). Bishop is the only the third goaltender in NHL history to record a playoff shutout after allowing at least five goals in each of the previous two games of the same series. The other goaltenders to do that were the Quebec Nordiques’ Dan Bouchard against the Flyers in 1981 (Game 3) and the Canadiens’Carey Price versus the Bruins in 2008 (Game 7).

Toews heroics are not enough

Jonathan Toews scored a pair of goals in the final two minutes of the third period to tie the score at 4-4 in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final, but the Blackhawks’ late comeback proved to be in vain as Matt Beleskey scored 45 seconds into overtime to win the game for the Ducks. It was the fifth time in NHL playoff history that a team tied a game after trailing by two goals in the last two minutes of regulation time, and Toews is the first player to score both the tying goal and the one before that. The last team before Chicago to stage a two-goal tying rally in the final two minutes of the third period was the Bruins in Game 7 of their first-round series against the Maple Leafs in 2013. Milan Lucic scored to get the Bruins within one goal, and Patrice Bergeron netted both the tying goal in regulation and the series-winner in overtime.


Never Before

Francisco Liriano struck out 12 batters and earned the win as the Pirates completed their three-game series sweep of the Mets. Gerrit Cole struck out ten batters in his series-opening win on Friday, as did A.J. Burnett in his victory on Saturday. It is the only time in modern major-league history (1900 to date) that a team’s starting pitchers won three straight games within one series while recording a double-digit strikeout total in each game.

Big Game James? 

The Padres averted being swept in their three-game series at Dodger Stadium behind the pitching of James Shields, who improved his record to 6-0 this season. Shields is the only pitcher who has won as many as six games for his new club after switching major-league teams during the past offseason. Since 2010, spanning his time with the Rays, Royals and Padres, Shields is 7-0 in 11 regular-season starts in games in which his team was in danger of being swept in a series, and each of those seven wins came on the road.

Historic Failure

Jeremy Guthrie gave up four homers and allowed 11 runs while getting only three outs against the Yankees on Monday. Guthrie is the first starting pitcher in major league history to give up at least four homers and allow 11 or more runs in a game in which he recorded no more than three outs.

Still doesn’t play on Sundays

Andre Ethier‘s solo home run in the eighth inning broke a 2-2 tie and the Dodgers went on to beat the Braves, 6-3, on Monday night. It was career home run #151 for Ethier, 14 of which have been go-ahead homers in the eighth inning or later (9.3 percent).

The only active players with more go-ahead homers than Ethier in the eighth inning or later since 2006 are Albert Pujols (17), Miguel Cabrera (16), Prince Fielder(16) and Chris Young (15). Jose BautistaJustin Morneau and David Ortiz also have 14 such homers since 2006.

Not since…

Prince Fielder went 3-for-5 with a home run in the Rangers’ win over the Indians. Fielder is now batting .365 with nine home runs in 45 games this season. The last Rangers player to have at least nine homers and a batting average of .360 or better over his first 45 games of a season was Josh Hamilton in 2012 (.368 with 20 homers).

Fielder has 11 hits and 12 runs batted in over his last four games. The only other player in Rangers franchise history with that many hits and RBIs over a four-game span is Ivan Rodriguez from July 30 to August 2, 1999. Pudge had 13 hits and 12 RBIs over that four-game span.

Miss me Milwaukee?

Giants’ leadoff batter, Nori Aoki, went 4-for-4 with a home run in their win over the Brewers. Aoki is the fourth Giants player over the last 60 years to go 4-for-4 or better with a home run from the leadoff spot in the batting order. Bobby Bonds, who did it three times (once each in 1971, 1972 and 1973), Marvin Benard (1998) and Randy Winn (twice in 2005) were the other Giants players to do it over that span.

Arenado times two

Nolan Arenado has seven hits and knocked in seven runs over his last two games. Arenado is the first major-league player this season to have that many hits and RBIs over a two-game span and he’s the first Rockies player to do it since Carlos Gonzalez had exactly seven hits and seven RBIs over two games in May 2012.  That is about how long it has been since we have seen anything from CarGo.

Elias Sports Bureau with the assist…

Late Night DiRT

Listen, and understand.  Change is out there.  It can’t be bargained with.  It can’t be reasoned with.  It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear, and it absolutely will not stop, ever…Change, has come, so we say goodbye to an era.  Goodbye to a man.  Goodbye.  Tonight the cowboy rides off into his sunset, never to be seen again.  The game has changed.  One generation grew up with Johnny, another with Dave, and the current one seems more interested in YouTube clips and celebrity pandering.

I haven’t always stayed up too watch Dave – the albatross made it more difficult as time flew by – DVR made it singular – but it was always a comfort to know that if/when I did – Dave was there.  I’m not a smoker, but every now and then a cigar is extremely satisfying, and that, to me, embodies the Late Show with David Letterman.

His reluctance towards celebrity-ism and the abhorrent genuflection of an industry was reflected in those of us that watched.  The set pieces, the Top 10 lists, stupid pet/human tricks, dropping stuff off of buildings, crazy street interviews/pranks with Rupert – all now American cultural lexicons, given to us as a savvy, self-contained, adult – just like his idol Carson.  Maybe Leno beat him regularly in the ratings, but that wasn’t the point – It’s Ham and Eggsdays work for the Chicken, a lifetime commitment for the Pig – Leno induced you to sleep.  Dave committed you to watch.

For Dave, the public drama, all those years ago, still stings the nostrils, but like Frank, he did it his way.  If the best revenge is living well, then there’s a certain redemption being played out, contra to those late night wars.  We won’t see Dave try to undermine Stephen Colbert and gradually sneak back into the spotlight.  In fact, we won’t see him at all.  That’s because Letterman’s way of doing things has taught us to expect the unexpected, and in this instance we know what the man will do.  He will leave tonight, gracefully like an adult, like Johnny Carson – as expected.  Thanks Dave!

In other news – it seems the other owners told Bob Kraft to shut up and sit down.  No more Bad-NFL headlines and thankfully, we will not have to hear anymore of this nonsense, except of course, from Brady.  Is that the point?  Was this self-serving crisis a ruse to get to the real issue – the 4 game suspension?  I bet Hizzoner and the rest of the owners told Bob to quiet down and we will give your Golden Boy a sentence-reduction to one game – after-all Hizzoner is overseeing the appeal and it will be another chance for Roger to happily-fall on the company sword.

Averting our attention so they could focus on the real issue(s), like the extra point.  It has now been declared that the customary one-point, after a touchdown, will now occur from the 15yd line – making it a 32yd field goal – or teams can go for two from the two.  Kickers have always been treated as non-essentials; in the locker-room, on TV, and now the NFL just made it worse – won’t anyone think of the kicker.  I never remember wanting more drama from a kicker, it’s bad enough how many times they seem to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.  It will be interesting to see how team philosophies will change going forward – for me this seems to be directed towards the Tim Tebow show and what Chip Kelly plans to do.  So play on league of valor, let our champions riot in the circus to entertain us – we will be fine, as long as we have our bread!

We have learned several things about these Warriors over the last few weeks and we thought they learned a valuable lesson against Memphis.  It seems they still needed reminding.  The Warriors were lucky last night – no Dwight Howard and being down 16 in the first half, only to squeak out a 4pt victory.  Of course, Bogut  not scoring and only grabbing 4 rebounds, won’t continue – and at some point someone is going to make a free throw.

Losing the first game on the road isn’t a big deal if you’re Houston, but possibly losing Howard could be.  Plus, Golden State will do better than 7-24 on open three point shots and if that’s what Houston has planned – wide open 3’s – this series won’t last long at all.  If you’re like me, you enjoyed the contrast of styles of the MVP and the runner-up – it’s what I wanted to see, Ali v Frazier.

The NBA Lottery – always exhibit A, in the great conspiracy debate.  “But Logan, the winner was Minnesota and the worst team hasn’t gotten the 1st pick since 2004, so wouldn’t it be fixed if New York or L.A. won the lottery?”  Wrong.  Now before I reach for my tin-foil hat – stay with me.

In the last three years prior – the Pelicans, Cavaliers and Cavaliers have gotten the number 1 pick – the odds of that happening are .4% – seriously .4%.  As long as the cloak-and-dagger cabal exists behind the scenes, the league will never avoid this charge.  Open it up, put it all on camera – show us.  Yeah but how does Minnesota prove it’s fixed?   Because the NBA always gives the top pick to the most obvious team and yes, Minnesota is obvious.  For the Pelicans/Hornets the league no longer owned the team but was committed to them staying in New Orleans – so Anthony Davis.  Then the NBA wanted to reward Cleveland for losing Lebron and to show that teams win titles not players and maybe create a rivalry with the Heat for ratings – so Anthony Bennett.  But he was terrible, so they had a do over – Andrew Wiggins.

But Leborn came back and they traded Wiggins for Love.  Exactly!  So the reason it was clear that Minnesota got the number pick is this:  The NBA wants a greater presence in Canada, (#BlameCanada).  Sure they have Toronto but that team chokes like a fat-kid on cake.  The Clippers will move to Seattle, (near Vancouver who lost a team to Memphis and Steve Ballmer’s $2b buys a lot of juice) and Milwaukee will move to Montreal if a new arena deal falls thru.  Don’t believe the Montreal rumor?  Then why was Adam Silver there to lay the groundwork beyond exhibition games recently?

So in the meantime, the NBA gives the #1 pick to the T-Wolves who already have the rookie of the year in Andrew Wiggins.  From?……Canada!  So the T-Wolves, already with some young talent, get a talented big man like Jahlil Okafor – BOOM goes the dynamite! Check-Mate! That just happened!

 

Shovelin’ DiRT

It’s been a rough weekend – all those buzzer beaters, sure does angry up the blood pressure to unhealthy levels – causing one to black out once or twice from the insanity.

Rare is not just a unicorn, it’s also a buzzer-beater in the playoffs.  Just think about how seldom it actually happens – that someone goes from way downtown to win the game with no time left and this weekend it happened back-to-back-to-back.  The trend started with Derrick Rose on Friday, continued with Paul Pierce on Saturday and finished with Lebron James yesterday, (watch all three).

With Kanye giving the introductions and throwing a mini-concert during the first media timeout, you could understand why the game itself was so ugly – a true visionary was in attendance.  It was like having to sit thru another Adam Sandler movie of hippity-dippity-doo – the game had a fantastic ending that almost wasn’t.

Dave Blatt – Mall Cop – almost cost his team a victory, twice.  First by calling three consecutive timeouts to get a proper inbound pass, then attempting to call a timeout he didn’t have after the Bulls tied it up, only to be saved from a technical by Tyron Lue.

Then, secondly, wanting the best player in the league to inbound the ball with 1.5 seconds left.  Huh?!  Thankfully the GM and real head coach of the Cavaliers changed the play call and took the shot himself.  Just think how different the Superbowl would have been if Lebron was there.  I have seen enough of Dave Blatt as a coach.  He has no idea what he is doing and the internal struggle of his adolescent mind is going to cost Cleveland down the road.  A 13yr-old babysitter can make better decisions in crisis, seriously!

Another coach that has to go is Kevin McHale and his ridiculous flashback to old-school basketball last night against the Clippers.  Dusting off his Celtics playing-days-playbook backfired as the Rockets went down again like it was dollar day at the whore-a-porium.  If you cant beat them – beat them up!  Hous-Done sent Deandre Jordan to the charity stripe 28 times in the first half – he made 10 – and now the Clippers are set to face the Grizzlies in the Western Conference Finals.  Is that presumptuous of me?  Have you seen the psychological warfare the Grizzlies are employing on the Warriors as they grind them down?  If the Warriors win tonight, maybe they get to the conference finals – but look closer – Golden State has no answer for Z-Bo or Gasol and they also cannot stop turning the ball over.  It doesn’t help that the Splash Bros are having trouble hitting water falling out of a boat.  The Warriors missed the memo in all their regular season praise that said playoff basketball is different and follows the fundamental principles of going inside out and defending the post.  Heart is found on the inside, not out on the wings.

Tonight is “what are you made of” night.  The Hawks and the Warriors could be one more step closer to beach reservations by way of Memphis and Washington.  Winning might just delay the inevitable either way – we’ll see – but I’m placing my money on Memphis(+4) and The Wiz(+4.5).  Watch both games tonight on TNT beginning at 7p EST.


One more time for the cheap seats – you can only deflate a ball so much before physics take over and when you consider all the league has done in favor of offense – how does this faux-rage continue to rave on?  If a league seceded control of the game-balls to the teams, then doesn’t a ball that is easier to catch and throw, better for TV?  The league could erase it all right now by controlling the game-balls the same way they do the balls used for kicking and make everyone play under the same conditions – so why don’t they?

If you are unable to move past this and feel as Troy Aikman does, that this is an issue of integrity – then you also agree that Hizzoner must also be held accountable in his meriting of sanctions.

“For the balls to have been deflated—that doesn’t happen unless the quarterback wants that to happen. I can assure you of that. Now the question becomes, Well, did Bill Belichick know about it? This whole comment by Roger Goodell based on the Saints when Sean Payton got suspended for the year, and he said, ‘Hey, ignorance is no excuse.’ That’s gonna come back and haunt [Goodell] again. It haunted him during the whole Ray Rice situation. And now it’s going to haunt Roger Goodell in terms of what the punishment is for the New England Patriots and Bill Belichick. If ignorance is no excuse, and it wasn’t for Sean Payton, and I think it’s going to be severe. Now twice under Bill Belichick—and possibly a third time—they’ve cheated and given themselves an advantage. And to me, the punishment for the Patriots and/or Bill Belichick has to be more severe than what the punishment was for the New Orleans Saints.”

Troy Aikman on radio station KTCK in Dallas

Goodell told the Saints that ignorance was not a suitable defense – so where does this hypocrite turn now?  Either integrity of the game is serious business or it isn’t.  For Goodell, he created this mess of swift frontier justice and unfortunately any decision made will bring scrutiny.  He needs to step down.  The league, under his watch is a breeding ground for incompetent psychopaths and criminals – that continues to fester under his reign.  It used to be the NFL was worried about gamblers challenging the integrity of the game – not it’s own employees.  I want my brutes honest and my coliseum spotless.  I also want the NFL to stop acting like a bad reality show on some shore in Jersey.


This Day in History from History.com…

1981
Bob Marley dies

In what would prove to be the next to the last concert of his tragically short life, Bob Marley shared the bill at Madison Square Garden with the hugely popular American funk band The Commodores. With no costumes, no choreography and no set design to speak of, “The reggae star had the majority of his listeners on their feet and in the palm of his hand,” according to New York Times critic Robert Palmer. “After this show of strength, and Mr. Marley’s intense singing and electric stage presence, the Commodores were a letdown.” Only days after his triumphant shows in New York City, Bob Marley collapsed while jogging in Central Park and later received a grim diagnosis: a cancerous growth on an old soccer injury on his big toe had metastasized and spread to Marley’s brain, liver and lungs. Less than eight months later, on May 11, 1981, Bob Marley, the soul and international face of reggae music, died in a Miami, Florida, hospital. He was only 36 years old.  Here is an old video of Bob, singing Redemption Song.