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Hornets clamp down on Thunder late to get the win

em>By Steve Reed, Associated Press /em> CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Nicolas Batum had a season-high 28 points, and the Charlotte Hornets beat the Oklahoma Thunder 123-112 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time) to snap a two-game losing streak. Batum was 7-of-18 from the field and made 13-of-15 free throws. The Hornets were 40-of-49 from the foul line. Russell Westbrook had 33 points and 15 rebounds, but fell two assists shy of his 17th triple-double of the season for Oklahoma City. Enes Kanter added 22 points, and Victor Oladipo and Steven Adams each had 18. The Thunder led by one after Kanter hit a three-pointer from the top of the key to beat the buzzer at the end of the third quarter. But they couldn't sustain the momentum after erasing a double-digit deficit. The Hornets took control with about six minutes left, outscoring the Thunder 22-11 the rest of the way. Kemba Walker, who scored 34 and 37 points in his last two games while making an All-Star push, had nine points in the decisive final quarter. Frank Kaminsky carried the Hornets early, scoring all of 17 points in the first half as Charlotte took a 60-55 halftime lead. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Thunder: /strong> /em> Westbrook was given a technical foul after hitting a referee in the head with a ball in the first quarter. After the Thunder called a timeout Westbook was retreating toward the bench and tossed an overhead pass toward the referee, who wasn't looking as the ball hit him in the side of the cranium. Westbrook put his hands over his head in apparent disbelief at the call. em> strong>Hornets: /strong> /em> Marco Belinelli returned to action after missing the last five games with a sprained left ankle. Roy Hibbert was called for a technical foul in the third quarter after exchanging words with Oklahoma City's Steven Adams. The Hornets had lost 11 straight games to the Thunder  before Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). strong>UP NEXT: /strong> em> strong>Thunder: /strong> /em> At Houston on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time). em> strong>Hornets: /strong> /em> At Detroit on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time) in the first of five straight games on the road. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 5th, 2017

Bucks lead East finals 2-0, and now series shifts to Toronto

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press Kawhi Leonard and Kyle Lowry have more than held their own against Giannis Antetokounmpo and Khris Middleton so far in these Eastern Conference finals. Other than some pretty boxscores, the Toronto Raptors have nothing to show for those efforts. [Watch the Playoffs on NBA League Pass for 30% less with this limited time offer! Select Annual package and use code SAVE30 at checkout to redeem] The supporting cast hasn’t supported much for Toronto, and with what is almost certainly a must-win Game 3 of the East title series looming on Sunday night at home, Raptors coach Nick Nurse is weighing lineup tweaks. Nurse suggested Saturday (Sunday, PHL time) that Serge Ibaka may start at center over struggling Marc Gasol, and Norman Powell may get minutes that would figure to come at Danny Green’s expense. “We’ve got to be better, man,” Nurse said Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). “We’ve got to be more physical, we’ve got to hustle more and we’ve got to work harder.” He may as well have punctuated that by adding “or else.” In this playoff format that was put into play in 1984, teams that win the first two games at home of a best-of-seven series have ultimately prevailed 94% of the time. And that’s the luxury Milwaukee has right now, leading the series 2-0 after rallying to win the opener and then controlling Game 2 start to finish. “We can’t rest,” Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. “We can’t relax. We can’t assume anything.” So the odds are stacked against the Raptors. Nurse was told the lack of success teams have when down 0-2 in a series, and insisted he doesn’t care. “I don’t really give a crap about that,” he said. “I just want our team to come play their (butt) off tomorrow night and get one game and it changes the series.” Leonard and Lowry are outscoring Antetokounmpo and Middleton 107-77 — which would figure to have been a boon to Toronto’s chances. It hasn’t worked that way. Add up everyone else’s scoring in the series, and it’s Bucks 156, Raptors 96. Rebounding has been one-sided in both games, with Milwaukee controlling things on the backboards. Bench scoring has tilted heavily toward Milwaukee as well. “We’re just trying to be us,” Bucks center Brook Lopez said. “We’re not playing any differently, regular season or postseason. We’re just trying to go out there and play Bucks basketball. It starts with our defense. Getting stops. Getting out. Playing in transition. Playing with pace. Sharing the ball and being aggressive and attacking the basket.” The Raptors don’t have to look at the history books to know this series isn’t over. All they need to do is recall the 2012 Western Conference finals. Leonard and Green were with top-seeded San Antonio, and Ibaka was with second-seeded Oklahoma City. The Spurs won Games 1 and 2 at home — then lost the next four, and the Thunder went to the NBA Finals. “We have another chance to bounce back on Sunday,” Gasol said. “That’s all that matters right now. That’s all that matters.” Here’s some of what to know before Game 3: QUICK WIT: Leonard, who isn’t the most talkative guy in the league to put it mildly, had a simple answer when asked where the Raptors go from here after the Game 2 loss. “I’m going to Toronto for Game 3,” Leonard said. WE (BARELY) THE NORTH: The series now shifts to Toronto, where the Raptors’ motto is “We The North.” It is, but barely in this case. Toronto is about 430 miles east of Milwaukee by air, and is only slightly north. And it should be noted that Toronto isn’t even the northernmost city that will be playing host to conference final games this weekend — Portland holds that distinction. GREEK FREAKS: Census figures show that at least a quarter-million Greeks live in Canada, and roughly half of those live in Ontario. Antetokounmpo isn’t expecting an overly warm welcome, but has seen a few Greek flags in the crowd on his past trips to Toronto. Antetokounmpo said he’d be touched if they were there Sunday, but isn’t thinking about it too much. “I’m going to try not to focus as much in the people and the Greeks and the population in Toronto,” Antetokounmpo said. “Just focusing on Game 3 and what we’ve got to do.” OFF, WISCONSIN: Including Games 1 and 2 of this series, matchups in Wisconsin are rarely kind to Nurse. He played at Northern Iowa, a conference rival of Green Bay — and his teams went 1-8 in those games, 0-4 at Green Bay’s former home court, the being-demolished Brown County Arena. Nurse said it was a nice place, but wasn’t upset to hear it’s coming down. “There weren’t very many good memories for me,” he said. BREAK FROM DRAKE: At least one Milwaukee radio station is taking this series extremely seriously. WXSS-FM is not allowing any songs by Raptors superfan Drake to be played on its station until the East finals are over. “We’re taking a break from you,” the station wrote in an open letter of sorts to the Toronto native and courtside ticketholder......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 19th, 2019

Has Kyrie Irving played his last game for Celtics?

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press It begins. When the buzzer sounded in Milwaukee on Wednesday night, the question immediately became this: Has Kyrie Irving played his last game for the Boston Celtics? It’s very possible. Welcome to free agency, Kyrie. [Watch the Playoffs on NBA League Pass for 30% less with this limited time offer! Select Annual package and use code SAVE30 at checkout to redeem] He’s now in the place that other big names like Kevin Durant, Jimmy Butler, Kawhi Leonard and Klay Thompson all will be whenever their respective seasons end, whether that happens with a playoff defeat, or with an injury — Durant left Game 5 of Golden State’s Western Conference semifinal series against Houston on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time) with a right calf strain — or with their fingerprints smudging the golden surface of the Larry O’Brien Trophy. They will all hear some version of the question that Irving got. Free agency doesn’t technically start until July 1, but in actuality it began for the superstar point guard with 8:40 left in the fourth quarter of Game 5 — when he checked out for the last time in what capped Boston’s ousting from the Eastern Conference semifinals by the Milwaukee Bucks. He has a player option for next season, one that would pay him about $21 million. No one expects him to pick up that option. Irving got the question a number of different ways Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time), and his defense was stellar. No hints, whatsoever. “I’m just trying to make it back to Boston first, safely,” Irving said. “Get to see my family. Decompress. Do what human beings do.” This will be a seismic free-agent summer in the NBA and everyone has known this was coming for some time. Durant, Butler, Leonard, Thompson, Irving and Kemba Walker all may sign deals worth well over $100 million apiece. Combined, the total value of those six looming contracts could flirt with $1 billion if everyone involved decides to max-out and not take shorter-term deals. The New York Knicks might have close to $75 million in salary-cap space, more than enough to potentially land Irving and Durant. The Los Angeles Clippers could have close to $60 million. Brooklyn, Dallas, Atlanta and Indiana might have about $50 million apiece. The Los Angeles Lakers — even with LeBron James’ big contract and a coaching search that has gone from slow to stuck — have more than enough to add some major names. It will be wild, starting with lots of eyes on Golden State. Questions about Durant leaving have percolated all season and will only pick up between now and July 1. Thompson’s future has been the source of much debate. Imagine: The Warriors could win their third straight title and fourth in five years, and they might break up anyway. Butler will take a long look at signing elsewhere, and he might start hearing ‘the question’ as soon as Thursday (Friday, PHL time) when Philadelphia now on the ropes against Toronto. Leonard’s future with the Raptors may be tied to how deep they go in the playoffs. Walker’s situation in Charlotte hinges on the size of the offer the Hornets make to keep him. Irving tried to make all the chatter about his future go away in early October, when he stole the show at a preseason event for Celtics fans at the team’s arena in Boston. He grabbed the microphone, walked toward midcourt and delivered a sentence that is going to get replayed a lot over the next eight weeks. “If you guys will have me back, I plan on re-signing here,” Irving said. Sounded great then. Doesn’t seem so iron-clad now. And truth be told, the Celtics might be thinking they’re better off without Irving anyway given how they went deeper in the playoffs with him sidelined last season and his struggles over the last four games of the Milwaukee series. They were 35-19 at one point. They went 19-18 the rest of the way. They went 14-17 in Irving’s last 31 appearances. They were 12-3 when he didn’t play this season. Irving won’t be taking a whole lot of questions — if any — over the next few weeks about his future. He knows what would be asked. All that matters now is his answer. ___ Tim Reynolds is a national basketball writer for The Associated Press. Write to him at treynolds@ap.org.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 9th, 2019

Madrid sends Stay strong message to former keeper Casillas

By Joseph Wilson, Associated Press BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Real Madrid's players and fans took a moment before Sunday's 3-2 Spanish league win over Villarreal to send messages of support to former star goalkeeper Iker Casillas as he recovers from a heart attack. Players posed for a team photo wearing T-shirts that said in Spanish "Iker, we are all with you," while spectators at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium chanted his name and unfurled a huge banner saying "Madrid fans are with you. Stay strong, eternal captain." The 37-year-old Casillas fell ill while training for his club, FC Porto, on Wednesday and remains hospitalized after undergoing a catheterization. Porto's doctors said the former Spain goalkeeper is expected to fully recover, but it is too early to know if he can keep playing professionally. Casillas was a fan favorite during his 16 seasons with Madrid, where he won three Champions League and five Spanish league trophies. Casillas also helped Spain to win the 2010 World Cup and two European Championships. He joined Portuguese club Porto in 2015. Against Villarreal, Madrid bounced back from a 0-0 draw at Getafe and a 1-0 loss at Rayo Vallecano as it struggles to compete consistently despite the return of coach Zinedine Zidane. Barcelona clinched the league title last week. With Madrid in a distant third place, all the talk in the Spanish capital is what the club will do in the offseason to shake up its squad. Zidane left stars Gareth Bale and Luka Modric off his squad for the match. "You can interpret it anyway you want, but I have to pick a squad (for the game), nothing more," Zidane said afterward. "I am not going to talk about the next season of anyone." Little used striker Mariano Díaz and defender Jesús Vallejo responded to their rare starts Sunday by scoring. Díaz struck twice, while Vallejo got his first goal for the club. Gerard Moreno and Juame Costa scored for Villarreal. Madrid's Vinicius Junior returned as a late substitute after two months sidelined with a leg injury. GETAFE FOUTH Getafe is trying to join Madrid, second-place Atletico Madrid and Barcelona in the Champions League next season. The modest club moved back ahead of Sevilla into fourth place and the final spot for Europe's top club competition after beating relegation-threatened Girona 2-0 at home. Jorge Molina continued his excellent season at age 37 by scoring his 14th league goal before Ángel Rodríguez put the result beyond doubt. TWO TEAMS RELEGATED Rayo and Huesca became the first teams to be relegated from the top tier. Rayo was left seven points from safety with two matches remaining — after Valladolid beat Athletic Bilbao 1-0. Huesca is also down after it was routed 6-2 by Valencia, leaving it eight points from safety......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 6th, 2019

Walker, Hornets drop 35-point hammer on Raptors

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) Kemba Walker scored 32 points on 11-of-16 shooting, and the Charlotte Hornets beat the Toronto Raptors 113-78 on Friday night. Walker, who came in averaging 23 points and looking to earn his first All-Star selection, scored 16 points in the pivotal third quarter, including a four-point play as the Hornets outscored the Raptors 33-15 to build a 25-point lead. Walker didn't play at all in the fourth quarter after the Hornets stretched their lead to 30. He finished with eight assists. Frank Kaminsky had a solid night off the bench for the second straight game, scoring 16 points and grabbing eight rebounds. Kyle Lowry had 24 points and DeMar DeRozan added 23 points for the Raptors, who have lost two straight. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 21st, 2017

Walker, Hibbert lead Hornets past Blazers 107-85

em>By Steve Reed, Associated Press /em> CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kemba Walker scored 23 points, Roy Hibbert provided a huge boost off the bench, and the Charlotte Hornets stopped a five-game slide with a 107-85 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). Nicolas Batum added 17 points for the Hornets, who limited the Trail Blazers to 35 percent shooting and snapped an eight-game streak of allowing at least 100 points. But it was the 7’2” Hibbert who stole the show. Hibbert, who came in averaging 5.2 points per game, had a season-high 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting. Damian Lillard scored 21 points and C.J. McCollum had 18 for Portland, which has lost three straight and 16-of-22 since Dec. 5 (Dec. 6, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 19th, 2017

Towns, Rubio lead Wolves to third straight win, top OKC

em>By Jon Krawczynski, Associated Press /em> MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Karl-Anthony Towns had 29 points and 17 rebounds and Ricky Rubio added 14 points and 14 assists to help the Minnesota Timberwolves to their third straight victory, 96-86 over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). Andrew Wiggins scored 19 points and Brandon Rush had 11 for the Timberwolves, who have won three in a row for the first time all season. The improving Timberwolves defense held the Thunder to 38.8 percent shooting and scored 33 points off of 19 Oklahoma City turnovers. Russell Westbrook had 21 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds for his 19th triple-double of the season. But he also had 10 turnovers in Oklahoma City's first loss in four games. Enes Kanter had 21 points and eight rebounds for the Thunder. Zach LaVine missed his second straight game for Minnesota with a hip pointer, but the Wolves still managed to shoot 45 percent. Towns made 11-of-17 shots, including a beauty of a scoop with five minutes to go that gave Minnesota a 13-point lead. The Wolves defense had been startlingly poor in its first season under defensive guru Tom Thibodeau, but has shown marked improvement of late. Minnesota entered the game sixth in the league in defensive rating over the previous 15 games, then put the clamps on Oklahoma City to improve to 8-8 after a 6-18 start. Westbrook has been a one-man wrecking crew this season, entering the game as the second player in league history to average at least 30 points, 10 assists and 10 rebounds per game through the first 40 games. His 19 triple-doubles are the most in a season since Wilt Chamberlain had 31 in 1967-68. But he made just 7-of-23 shots against the Wolves and was 1-for-10 from three-point range. Rubio tied a franchise record with 17 assists in a win over the Rockets on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL tie), had another 15 assists in the win over Dallas on Monday (Tuesday, PHL time) and was at his best in the third quarter on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). He had six points and seven assists in the quarter, scoring or assisting on nine of Minnesota's 12 field goals in the period. He also checked Westbrook for the entire period, helping to hold him to 0-for-7 shooting with five turnovers in 12 minutes. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Thunder: /strong> /em>Westbrook surpassed his triple-double total for all of last season. Victor Oladipo scored 19 points. Kanter hit a three-pointer at the end of the first quarter, just his fifth of the season. em> strong>Timberwolves: /strong> /em> Rubio also had four steals and five turnovers. Rubio's 46 assists over the last three games is tied with Westbrook for the most dimes in a three-game span this season. Towns had his 10th straight double-double and 30th of the season. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Thunder: /strong> /em> Oklahoma City heads to Sacramento for a game Sunday (Monday, PHL time), the second of its six-game road trip. em> strong>Timberwolves: /strong> /em>Minnesota starts a three-game road trip in Dallas on Sunday (Monday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 14th, 2017

Harden's triple-double leads Rockets to ninth straight win

em>By Kristie Rieken, Associated Press /em> HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden had 40 points, 15 rebounds and 10 assists for his second straight triple-double and the Houston Rockets outlasted the Charlotte Hornets 121-114 on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time) for their ninth straight win. The Rockets missed 10 straight shots and let an 18-point lead evaporate before coach Mike D'Antoni called a timeout with 2:26 left. Ryan Anderson made Houston's first shot in more than four minutes with a three-pointer out of the timeout, and after a block on the other end, Harden's layup put Houston up 115-111 with just over a minute to play. Kemba Walker cut the deficit to one with a three-pointer, but another layup by Harden made it 117-114 with 28.6 seconds left. Charlotte missed three three-point tries in the final seconds. Walker had 25 points for the Hornets, who dropped their third straight. Houston led by 18 after a three-pointer by Corey Brewer with about eight minutes remaining. A 21-2 run by the Hornets followed and put them ahead 111-110 with about 2.5 minutes left. Frank Kaminsky got that run going by scoring the first five points and made two three-pointers later in that stretch, including the one that put Charlotte on top. Houston was up by 20 after a three-pointer by Anderson with about nine minutes left in the third quarter. The Hornets then used a 12-3 run to get within 75-64 about four minutes later. Marvin Williams and Walker both had 3-pointers during that stretch. A three-pointer by Trevor Ariza extended Houston's lead a bit after that, but Charlotte cut the lead to 11 again later in the quarter. This time, Houston responded with a 12-6 run to close out the quarter and take a 96-79 lead into the fourth. Harden powered that run with seven points. Houston led 67-47 at halftime. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Hornets: /strong> /em> F-C Cody Zeller sat out with an illness. G Nicolas Batum missed his second straight game with a hyperextended right knee. Williams had 16 points and Kaminsky had 22. em> strong>Rockets: /strong> /em> G Eric Gordon missed the game with a sprained left big toe. Ariza finished with 16 points. Houston led by as many as 23 points. The Rockets had 25 fast-break points to just two by Charlotte. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Hornets: /strong> /em>Visit Philadelphia on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). em> strong>Rockets: /strong> /em>Visit Minnesota on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 11th, 2017

Cavaliers acquire Kyle Korver from Hawks

em>Cleveland Cavaliers press release /em> CLEVELAND, Ohio -- The 2016 NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers have acquired guard Kyle Korver from the Atlanta Hawks in exchange for guard/forward Mike Dunleavy, guard Mo Williams, cash considerations and a protected first-round draft pick (first possible pick is Cleveland's 2019 first round pick), Cavaliers General Manager David Griffin announced Saturday (Sunday, PHL time) from Cleveland Clinic Courts.   “We are extremely pleased to be able to add a player and person the caliber of Kyle Korver to our Cavs family,” said Griffin. “Among the most prolific and dynamic three-point shooters in NBA history, a selfless, and team first competitor, Kyle brings all of the elements of Cavs DNA that we covet on and off the floor. We look forward to welcoming Kyle, his wife, Juliet and their three children to Northeast Ohio and are certain our fans will embrace them with open arms.” In Atlanta, President of Basketball Operations/Head Coach Mike Budenholzer issued the following statement: “We are incredibly grateful to Kyle for his contributions to the Hawks over the last five years. He is a professional in every sense of the word and played a significant part in establishing our culture and in the success this franchise has seen. This is a difficult decision, but one we felt was in the best interest of the organization.” Korver (6'7', 212) played in 32 games (21 starts) for Atlanta this season with averages of 9.5 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 27.9 minutes. He is also shooting .889 from the foul line and .409 from the three-point line, while scoring in double figures 16 times in 2016-17. Korver has spent the last four-plus seasons with the Hawks and currently ranks first on the team’s all-time free throw percentage list at .887 (329-371) and third on the club’s all-time three-point field goals made chart with 818 triples. Korver shot .452 (818-1,811) from the three-point line in his career with Atlanta and hit at least one triple in 311 of 332 games played with the team. Playing in his 14th NBA season, Korver has appeared in 996 games (417 starts) with Philadelphia, Utah, Chicago and Atlanta, owning career averages of 10.0 points and 3.1 rebounds in 26.6 minutes per game. He was an NBA All-Star in 2015 and ranks eighth in NBA history with 1,952 career three-pointers (fifth among active players) and eighth all-time in three-point field goal percentage (.429). Korver has hit 100 threes or more 11 times in his career, including each of the last six seasons. Dunleavy (6'9', 220), who was acquired in a trade with Chicago on July 7, 2016, played in 23 games (two starts) for the Cavaliers this season, averaging 4.6 points and 2.0 rebounds in 15.9 minutes. Williams (6'1', 198) was part of the Cavaliers’ 2016 NBA championship team after signing as a free agent on July 10, 2015 and averaged 8.2 points and 2.4 assists in 18.2 minutes in 41 games (14 starts) last season. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 7th, 2017

Five NBA teams make cuts to their rosters

em>NBA team press releases /em> strong>Mavericks waive guard Pierre Jackson /strong> DALLAS –The Dallas Mavericks announced today that they have requested waivers on guard Pierre Jackson. Jackson (5-11, 176) was originally signed by the Mavericks on December 27 and made his NBA debut that night against the Houston Rockets where he registered 7 points, 2 assists and 1 rebound in 11 minutes of action. Jackson averaged 3.0 points, 1.8 assists and 7.1 minutes in his 4 games with Dallas.  The Texas Legends call-up had appeared in 10 games (all starts) for the Mavericks’ D-League affiliate this season. He averaged 29.1 points, 4.5 rebounds, 6.0 assists, 1.9 steals and 35.7 minutes per game while in Frisco. Jackson holds career D-League averages of 25.9 points, 3.6 rebounds, 5.6 assists, 1.7 steals and 36.9 minutes in 49 games (37 starts) with the Idaho Stampede and Texas Legends. On Feb. 4, 2014, he set the D-League single-game scoring record with 58 points against the Legends (Jordan McRae later broke it with a 61-point game in January 2016 and Russ Smith topped that with 65-point night in March 2016). Jackson was named to the Futures All-Star roster for the 2014 NBA D-League All-Star Game.   +++ strong>Denver Nuggets waive Alonzo Gee /strong> DENVER – The Denver Nuggets have waived forward Alonzo Gee, General Manager and Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly announced today. Gee, 6-6, 225, signed with Denver on Nov. 16, 2016, appearing in 13 games and averaging 1.1 rebounds in 6.9 minutes. The seven-year NBA veteran has appeared in 417 career games (213 starts) for Washington, San Antonio, Cleveland, Portland, New Orleans and Denver posting averages of 6.6 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 21.8 minutes. +++ strong>Suns waive Jenkins /strong> PHOENIX - The Phoenix Suns have waived guard John Jenkins. Jenkins has averaged 1.8 points and 3.3 minutes in four appearances this season, and averaged 5.0 points and 13.0 minutes in 22 games with the Suns in 2015-16. A 6’4” guard in his fifth NBA season, Jenkins initially joined the Suns after being claimed off of waivers on Feb. 24, 2016.  The Suns’ roster now stands at 14 players.  +++ strong>Orlando Magic waives Arinze Onuaku /strong> ORLANDO -- The Orlando Magic have waived center Arinze Onuaku, General Manager Rob Hennigan announced today.  Orlando’s roster now stands at 14 players. In addition, the Magic have recalled guard C.J. Wilcox from the Erie BayHawks of the NBA Development League.  Onuaku (6’9”, 255, 7/13/87) played in eight games this season with the Magic, averaging 0.5 ppg. in 3.5 minpg.  He was originally signed as a free agent by Orlando on September 8. Wilcox (6’5”, 195, 12/30/90) has played in 15 games this season with the Magic, averaging 0.9 ppg. in 5.0 minpg. This was his second assignment to Erie. Wilcox has appeared in four games (one start) with the BayHawks this season, averaging 12.5 ppg., 4.3 rpg., 2.0 apg. and 1.25 stlpg. in 25.3 minpg.  He was previously assigned on December 15. +++ strong>Atlanta Hawks waive forward Ryan Kelly /strong> ATLANTA, GA – The Atlanta Hawks Basketball Club has requested waivers on forward Ryan Kelly, it was announced today by President of Basketball Operations/Head Coach Mike Budenholzer. Kelly, who signed on October 31, 2016, appeared in nine games with the Hawks. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 7th, 2017

Hornets' Batum out with hyperextended right knee

em>Charlotte Hornets press release /em> The Charlotte Hornets announced that guard Nicolas Batum underwent a Magnetic Resonance Image (MRI) today which confirmed the previous diagnosis of a hyperextended right knee. The MRI also showed that Batum withstood no structural damage to his knee. Batum will be out for Charlotte’s game tomorrow (Sunday, PHL time) at San Antonio and his status moving forward will be day-to-day. He suffered the injury with 4:48 remaining in the third quarter of the Hornets game at Detroit last night.  The 6’8” shooting guard is averaging career highs of 15.1 points and 5.8 assists per game, along with 7.4 rebounds per game in 36 appearances (all starts) in the 2016-17 season. In nine seasons, Batum holds career averages of 11.9 points, 5.3 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game in 587 contests (534 starts). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 7th, 2017

Spurs handle Nuggets with ease

em>By Pat Graham, Associated Press /em> DENVER (AP) -- LaMarcus Aldridge scored 28 points, including 11 while sparking a third-quarter spurt, and the San Antonio Spurs beat the Denver Nuggets 127-99 on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time). Kawhi Leonard added 24 points, while Tony Parker had 21 and a season-high nine assists for the Spurs, who improved to 17-3 on the road this season. Parker shot 10-of-11 from the field. Aldridge helped San Antonio pull away in the third quarter by knocking down a flurry of mid-range jumpers and hook shots. He has reached double figures in 30 of 33 games this season. Nikola Jokic had 19 points and 11 rebounds for Denver, which dropped its fourth straight. San Antonio entered fresh off a 110-82 win over Toronto on Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time). It was a game in which the Spurs made the Raptors look 'like a JV team,' Nuggets coach Michael Malone said. 'They have that kind of talent. They have that chemistry. ... I just hope we rise to the challenge.' But the Nuggets couldn't match San Antonio's intensity and had no answer for all of its scoring options. Aldridge hit a 19-footer with 4:55 remaining in the first half, giving the Spurs a lead they didn't relinquish. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Spurs: /strong> /em>Pau Gasol had 17 points and a team-high nine rebounds. San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich was succinct in his pregame chat. What scares him about the Nuggets? 'They're the opponent tonight,' he responded. That makes them good? 'Absolutely. Respect every team you play,' he said. em> strong>Nuggets: /strong> /em> F Kenneth Faried missed the game with a sore lower back. F Danilo Gallinari drew a technical for arguing a call in the third quarter. Jokic dished out five assists. No surprise, since he's one of the top passers among centers this season. Denver was out-rebounded by a 41-38 margin. strong>SORRY /strong> Malone apologized to his veteran players for calling them out for a lack of leadership following a loss to Sacramento on Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time). 'I let my frustrations after that loss get the best of me,' he explained. 'If I have issues with our veterans, I'll address it with our veterans 1-on-1, to try and resolve whatever issues there may be.' He doesn't believe there's any lingering animosity. 'Our locker room is tied together,' Malone said. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Spurs: /strong> /em> Host the Charlotte Hornets on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). em> strong>Nuggets: /strong> /em> At the Oklahoma City Thunder on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 6th, 2017

Tottenham beats Chelsea 2-0 to end 13-match EPL winning run

br /> ROB HARRIS, AP Global Soccer Writer   LONDON (AP) — Dele Alli underlined his growing reputation by single-handedly ending Chelsea's 13-match winning run Wednesday, scoring two headed goals to give Tottenham a 2-0 victory over the Premier League leaders. The defense has been the bedrock of Chelsea's three-month hot streak but Alli was gifted space to score carbon copy goals in each half at White Hart Lane after meeting crosses from Christian Eriksen. By taking his tally to seven goals in four games, the 20-year-old Alli inflicted Chelsea's first loss since its last trip to north London at Arsenal in September and prevented the Blues from earning a league record 14th successive win in a single season. 'This league is very tough,' Chelsea manager Antonio Conte said. 'Now it's important to restart. After 13 wins in a row it's difficult to accept defeat.' Chelsea still leads Liverpool by five points but Tottenham is now only seven points behind in third after a fifth successive victory. 'It's a big statement for us but we are happy to stay under the radar,' said Alli, whose team's hopes of a first title since 1961 were ended by Chelsea last season. Conte established the winning run that sent Chelsea to the summit after switching to a three-man defense to stem the tide of goals in a 3-0 first half collapse at Arsenal. But the defense is now leaking goals, conceding four in the last two matches after only letting in two in the previous 12 fixtures. Tottenham matched Chelsea's formation and restricted Conte's side to few chances, while proving more cohesive and solid at the back to frustrate the visitors' forward line. 'I didn't get on the ball as much as I would have liked to,' Alli said. The midfielder didn't need to. Alli was described on the eve of the game by manager Mauricio Pochettino as the 'most important player to emerge in English football in recent years.' Signed from third-tier club MK Dons two years ago for 5 million pounds (then $8 million), Alli lived up to his manager's exalted praise with his mastery of the attacking spaces. While Chelsea was looking more likely to score on the counterattack in the first half, Tottenham used a break to devastating effect on the stroke of halftime with Alli making the breakthrough. Kyle Walker teed up Eriksen and as the cross was floated into the penalty area, Alli was left unmarked between Victor Moses and Cesar Azpilicueta to coolly nod past goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois. It was an assertive start to the second half by Chelsea, but Tottenham preserved its lead. Goalkeeper Hugo Lloris blocked a low shot from Diego Costa, Eden Hazard's low header was off target and Moses' penalty appeals were dismissed when he was clipped by Mousa Dembele. Spurs then punished Chelsea's porous defending again in the 54th minute with a replica of the opener. Walker did the running down the right flank before laying the ball off for Eriksen. The Danish international picked out Alli between Moses and Azpilicueta, and the midfielder found the target with this header. 'We were short of the levels we set ourselves, for whatever reason that may be, a few misplaced passes and not moving the ball as quick as we have been,' Chelsea defender Gary Cahill said. 'They are a top quality opposition and we got punished for being short.' Chelsea's plight in the derby was summed up in the first half by the team's top scorer, Costa, engaging in an on-pitch row with Pedro Rodriguez for several minutes. It followed Pedro's failure to run into space in front of goal to meet a pass from Costa when the score was still 0-0. 'It is normal disappointment,' Conte said. 'It was a good chance for us and we wasted it.' ___ Rob Harris is at www.twitter.com/RobHarris and www.facebook.com/RobHarrisReports .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 5th, 2017

Paul George scores 32 as Pacers beat Pistons

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) — Paul George had 32 points and the Indiana Pacers beat the Detroit Pistons 121-116 on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time). Myles Turner and Jeff Teague each scored 17 for Indiana, which blew a 15-point first-half lead but pulled away in the fourth quarter to win its third straight game. The Pacers (18-18) are 2.5 games ahead of Detroit (16-21) in the Eastern Conference standings. Tobias Harris led the Pistons with 22 points. Andre Drummond and Reggie Jackson each had a double-double. Detroit lost for the eighth time in 10 games, with two of the defeats coming at home to Indiana. The Pacers hit 6-of-7 three-pointers in the first quarter to score a season-high 36 points and take an eight-point lead. The margin was as big as 15 in the second before the Pistons rallied late to pull to 66-60. George and Teague each had 14 points in Indiana's highest-scoring half of the season. The Pacers shot 59 percent from the floor, 88 percent on three-pointers and 93 percent from the foul line. Detroit also shot well, hitting 57 percent of its shots, but couldn't keep up despite 13 points from Jackson. Jackson's jumper early in the third cut the lead to 73-72 and prompted a timeout from Indiana coach Nate McMillan. Jackson's alley-oop to Drummond tied the game at 77, and it was 92-all going into the fourth quarter. Indiana's offense got hot again early in the fourth, and the Pacers built a 103-96 lead with seven minutes to play. George's three-point play with 3:28 left made it 114-104, and Detroit couldn't get enough stops to threaten until the final minute. Marcus Morris' two three-pointers pulled Detroit to 119-114 with 50.3 seconds left and, after a turnover, Drummond's putback made it a three-point game. Monta Ellis made two free throws before Morris and Jackson missed at the other end. strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Pacers: /strong> /em>The win was Indiana's fifth of the season on the road, and it snapped a three-game losing streak away from Indianapolis. The Pacers are 2-0 at the Palace this season, and 3-13 in other road games. em> strong>Pistons: /strong> /em>With Aron Baynes sidelined by an ankle injury, Detroit went with little-used Boban Marjanovic as Drummond's backup. Marjanovic matched up mostly with Al Jefferson, who always gives Drummond problems. strong>HISTORIC RIVALRY /strong> As part of the last season at the Palace of Auburn Hills, the Pistons spent much of the night honoring great moments from their rivalry with Indiana. The list was heavily populated by their postseason battles in the mid-2000s, with No. 1 being Tayshaun Prince's chase-down block of Reggie Miller in the 2004 Eastern Conference finals. Not a surprise: The most memorable Pistons-Pacers moment, the brawl involving Ron Artest and fans in November 2004, was not included. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Pacers: /strong> /em> Host the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday (Friday, PHL time). em> strong>Pistons: /strong> /em>Host the Charlotte Hornets on Thursday (Friday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 4th, 2017

Butler has 52 to help Bulls top Walker, Hornets

CHICAGO (AP) -- Jimmy Butler scored 52 points and outdueled Kemba Walker, carrying the Chicago Bulls in a 118-111 victory over the Charlotte Hornets on Monday night (Tuesday, PHL time). Butler was a point shy of his career-high, which he got on Jan. 14, 2016 at Philadelphia. He scored 20 points in the first half and 17 in the game's final four minutes. Butler also had 12 rebounds and six assists while shooting 21-of-22 from the free-throw line. He has scored at least 25 points in four straight games, and his performance Monday (Tuesday, PHL time) surpassed his previous season-high of 40 points, which he tallied Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) against Brooklyn. Walker boosted his All-Star candidacy with 34 points and a season-high 11 rebounds. Walker, who scored 37 points against Cleveland on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time), tallied consecutive 30-point games for the first time since March 7-9, 2016. Nikola Mirotic had 12 points and Michael Carter-Williams finished with 10 points and nine rebounds for Chicago. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2017

Heat still struggling, and now hit road for six-game trip

em>By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press /em> MIAMI (AP) — When the Miami Heat return home from their road trip, the season will officially be half over. It's already seemed like a marathon. Barely seven months removed from being a game shy of the NBA's Final Four, the Heat were the first team this season to reach the 25-loss mark. Only Philadelphia and Brooklyn are keeping Miami from having the league's worst record, and it's a paper-thin buffer right now between the Heat and the cellar. Injuries have piled up as well, further adding to the struggle of rebuilding. 'It's not so much frustration,' Heat forward Justise Winslow said, talking about the team's collective mood. 'It's more just like sympathy.' Banged-up and usually beaten, the Heat start a six-game trip in Phoenix on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time). The good news is that the first three games on this swing are against teams that are like the Heat, well below the .500 mark. The bad news is that Miami hasn't beaten anybody on the road in more than a month, and seems to have a different lineup every night. Just in Sunday's (Monday, PHL time) loss to Detroit alone, the Heat were without Goran Dragic, Hassan Whiteside, Dion Waiters, Josh McRoberts and Winslow. McRoberts is out indefinitely with a stress fracture in his left foot, and Whiteside (scratched right eye) and Winslow (right shoulder stinger) did not travel with the team Monday (Tuesday, PHL time) — though that doesn't mean they can't meet the Heat somewhere on this trip. 'We'll get guys back,' coach Erik Spoelstra said. Dion Waiters hasn't played since late November because of a torn groin muscle; he was on the team flight Monday (Tuesday, PHL time), a sign that his return might finally be coming. Whiteside got poked in the eye during Miami's game at Boston on Friday (Saturday, PHL time), when Winslow got hurt on the final play of the game. At this rate, there will be a point where Miami starts thinking more about the future than the present. Plenty of trade talk in the next few weeks will involve the Heat, who have a ton of salary-cap space to use this summer and will undoubtedly hear from contending teams looking to add a player or two for the looming playoff runs. And unless there's some seismic improvement, Miami's NBA draft lottery odds might look pretty good as well. 'I know this about Erik's teams: They're going to play really, really hard,' Detroit coach Stan Van Gundy said of Spoelstra, his longtime friend going back to when they were both part of the Heat staff. Just take some examples from Sunday's (Monday, PHL time) loss: James Johnson dove on the floor to salvage what looked like a sure turnover, setting up a three-pointer. He leaped into the Detroit bench a couple minutes later to save a ball, and the Heat got another triple out of that possession. Rodney McGruder thwarted a 4-on-1 Detroit fast break later in the game as well, though the Pistons wound up scoring on that possession. That's sort of the theme for the Heat season so far. Even when things go right, it's not right enough. 'I'm seeing the guys out there diving on the floor, making winning plays, putting their bodies out there, putting themselves out there,' captain Udonis Haslem said. 'That's how you become a championship team.' Even with Whiteside's numbers looking good — averages of 17.3 points and 14.3 rebounds per game — he's far from a lock for the All-Star team, in part because there's no true center designation in the roster-choosing process. No one currently playing for the Heat has ever been an All-Star, and it's probably reasonable to think that won't change in the next few weeks. For comparison's sake, last year's Heat lineup featured players with a combined 38 All-Star trips. Dwyane Wade's now in Chicago, Joe Johnson is in Utah, Luol Deng is with the Lakers, Amare Stoudemire is in Israel and Chris Bosh is in basketball exile, sidelined by concerns about his blood-clot situations and now seen with Heat teammates only in photos from New Year's Eve gatherings. 'It is what it is,' Winslow said. 'Take it with a grain of salt. Not going to make any excuses. We're all basketball players. We get paid to do this. We get paid to show up on time, get paid to have your brother's back on the court.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2017

Texans have QB questions again after 24-17 loss to Titans

TERESA M. WALKER, AP Pro Football Writer br /> NASHVILLE, Tennessee (AP) — The Houston Texans are going into the playoffs with their quarterback situation unsettled once again, this time a combination of injury and improved play by Brock Osweiler. Tom Savage wound up sidelined by a concussion on Sunday and Osweiler played well enough after coming off the bench in Houston's 24-17 loss at Tennessee that coach Bill O'Brien said the Texans will be evaluating who starts their AFC wild-card game. The Texans (9-7) will host Oakland (12-4) next weekend. 'We will talk about that as a staff,' O'Brien said. 'We will talk about that tomorrow and the next day.' Savage started for the AFC South champions, left in the second quarter to be evaluated for a concussion and was cleared. He took a snap to kneel down on the final play of the first half and O'Brien told team radio Savage would play in the second half. But Savage was diagnosed with a concussion after being re-evaluated at halftime. O'Brien said he did not know what happened. That left Osweiler, benched during a win over Jacksonville on Dec. 18, running the offense. He threw for 253 yards and a touchdown and also ran for a 1-yard TD on fourth-and-goal in the fourth quarter. Osweiler had one final chance to tie with Houston getting the ball with 53 seconds left. But he was sacked and threw incomplete on fourth down as Tennessee held on. 'He did a good job,' O'Brien said. 'He competed. Guys got open for him. He threw the ball. Did a nice job for us.' Osweiler, the quarterback signed away from Denver for $72 million, said he absolutely wants to start in the playoffs. 'You play this game to be a starter,' Osweiler said. 'You play this game to contribute positively to your team, so I would absolutely love to start this playoff game. But at the end of the day I don't make those decisions.' Wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins said nobody panicked when Savage left the game. 'We hate that Tom went down the way he did,' Hopkins said. The guy's just getting his chance in this league. But this is the NFL and it's next man up.' DaQuan Jones recovered a fumble for a touchdown in the first quarter and the Titans never trailed to finish with their first winning season since 2011. Matt Cassel also threw for a touchdown in his first start this season in place of an injured Marcus Mariota and Derrick Henry ran for a TD. The Texans had little at stake except sweeping the AFC South for the first time in franchise history. They deactivated six starters before kickoff and had just one starter in on defense by midway through the third quarter. Undrafted rookie Joel Heath had two of the Texans' four sacks. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 2nd, 2017

Green, Parker help Spurs rally to beat Trail Blazers

em>By Raul Dominguez, Associated Press /em> SAN ANTONIO (AP) — In the midst of another dispirited effort, San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich decided not to yell at the Spurs — and they responded as he hoped. Danny Green and Tony Parker each had 18 points and San Antonio overcame another listless first half to beat the Portland Trail Blazers 110-94 on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). 'Sometimes I go crazy, sometimes I decide to just sit and let them figure it out,' Popovich said. 'It just depends on how I'm feeling, how I think the game might go, or who's on the court at the time. Tonight, I wanted them to see what was going on for themselves. They did a good job of it.' The Spurs won their ninth game after trailing by 10-plus points, falling behind by 13 in the first half against the Trail Blazers. San Antonio forward Kawhi Leonard sat out his second straight game with a stomach virus and Portland point guard Damian Lillard missed his third consecutive game with an injured left ankle. Even when Leonard has played, the Spurs' first-half struggles have made things difficult. San Antonio is at a loss to understand why that is. 'I don't know,' Parker said. 'If I knew, I would not do it. No idea.' Despite the struggles, the Spurs have won four straight and 13 of 15. San Antonio had another sluggish first half, trailing by double-digits for 12 minutes and falling behind by 13 points midway through the second quarter. Portland forced 14 turnovers and shot 51 percent from the field through two quarters. 'We've got to do a better job of coming out with more of an edge to the game,' said Spurs center Pau Gasol, who finished with 10 points and seven rebounds. 'Teams know we've been having the slow starts and they play with confidence. Then we turn it up and win games, but it's something we need to keep in mind going forward so that it's not something that is repetitive or too repetitive.' C.J. McCollum finished with 29 points for Portland. Maurice Harkless and Allen Crabbe were the only others in double figures, with Harkless finishing with 12, and Crabbe 11. The Trail Blazers shot 43 percent in the third quarter after shooting 51 percent in the first half. Spurs reserve Manu Ginobili's second three-pointer with 3:49 remaining in the third quarter gave San Antonio a 69-67 lead, its first since holding an 11-8 edge 3 minutes into the game. San Antonio had seven three-pointers in the second half to win their seventh straight at home. LaMarcus Aldridge was held to eight points on 2-for-3 shooting, but Jonathon Simmons added 19 points for the Spurs. Green had six three-pointers in scoring a season-high. 'Today their strategy obviously was they were not going to let LaMarcus go off,' Parker said. 'In the last two games LaMarcus has been scoring a lot and been playing unbelievable. That's their strategy and other guys stepped up.' strong>TIP-INS /strong> em> strong>Trail Blazers: /strong> /em> Lillard missed his third straight game after playing in the team's first 32. He leads the team in scoring with 27.0 points and in assists at 6.2 per game. Portland entered Friday (Saturday, PHL time) allowing 111.5 points per game and 38 percent on 3-pointers, which are both 28th in the league. F/C Mason Plumlee had his streak of two straight double-doubles stopped. Plumlee had eight points and five rebounds. em> strong>Spurs: /strong> /em> Green has 33 games with at least five three-pointers, the most in franchise history. San Antonio finished 2016 at 66-15, its most successful calendar year in franchise history. The Spurs are 13-0 when Parker scores in double figures. strong>STILL HELPING OUT /strong> After shooting 25-for-32 and scoring 60 points in his previous two games, Aldridge was limited to three attempts against Portland. 'They double-teamed him all the time,' Popovich said. 'So, you can pretty much take a player out of the game if you do that. So, they decided to do that, and he did a good job getting rid of the ball when he figured it out.' Aldridge only had one assist, but his passes helped set up San Antonio's 11 three-pointers. strong>LEARNING FROM THE MASTER /strong> McCollum said he spent the offseason studying film of Parker's mid-range jumper after taking a step to his left away from a defender. The shot helped McCollum shoot 10-for-19 against the Spurs. strong>UP NEXT /strong> em> strong>Trail Blazers: /strong> /em>At Minnesota on Sunday night (Monday, PHL time). em> strong>Spurs: /strong> /em> At Atlanta on Sunday night (Monday, PHL time). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 31st, 2016

Raptors survive Walker's 40-point explosion for Hornets

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) DeMar DeRozan continued his torrid pace, scoring 34 points as the Toronto Raptors snapped the Charlotte Hornets' four-game winning streak with a 113-111 win Friday night. DeRozan came into the game averaging an NBA-high 34.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 12th, 2016

Walker shoots Hornets over Nets

NEW YORK (AP) Kemba Walker scored a season-high 30 points and the Charlotte Hornets improved their best start in 16 years to 4-1 by beating the Brooklyn Nets 99-95 on Friday night. Nicolas Batum added 18 points and nine rebounds, while Marvin .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 5th, 2016