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Reggie Jackson scores 23 points, Pistons rout Suns 131-107

By Dave Hogg, Associated Press DETROIT (AP) — Reggie Jackson scored 23 points and the Detroit Pistons beat the Phoenix Suns 131-107 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time) for their third straight victory. Tobias Harris and Avery Bradley each scored 20 points, and Andre Drummond had 13 points and matched a career-best with seven assists in Detroit’s highest-scoring game of the season. The Pistons improved to 14-6 overall, 8-2 at home in their first season at Little Caesars Arena, and 7-1 against the Western Conference. Devin Booker led the Suns with 22 points, and rookie Josh Jackson had a career-high 20. Phoenix has lost four out of five and is 1-2 on a six-game trip. The Suns were coming off a 104-99 victory in Chicago on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time), while Detroit had Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time) off after a 10-point victory in Boston. Harris scored 14 points and the Pistons had a season-best 36 points in the first quarter. Detroit shot 62.5 percent in the period to build a 17-point lead. Phoenix continued to struggle in the second, falling behind by 32 points. Detroit led 69-41 at halftime, outshooting the Suns 63 percent to 44.7 percent. Harris had 16 points in the half, and Reggie Jackson added 15. The Pistons led by as many as 36 in the second half. TIP-INS Suns: One night after using seven-footers Tyson Chandler and Dragan Bender as his starting center and power forward in Chicago, Suns coach Jay Triano changed things against the Pistons. Marquese Chriss and former Piston Greg Monroe started, while Chandler didn’t enter the game until the fourth quarter. Pistons: Drummond hit all three free-throw attempts against Phoenix, and is shooting 63 percent from the line this season. Drummond entered the season as the worst free-throw shooter in NBA history, having made 38.1 percent of his attempts over five seasons. UP NEXT Suns: At Boston on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). Pistons: At Washington on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource: abscbn abscbnNov 30th, 2017

Drummond, Griffin lead Pistons in rout of Bulls

DETROIT --- Andre Drummond had 19 points and 19 rebounds and Blake Griffin added 20 points and 10 rebounds as the Detroit Pistons beat the Chicago Bulls 107-88 Friday night. Reggie Jackson added 20 points for the Pistons, who have won four straight. Just as important for Detroit, coach Dwane Casey was able to use his reserves for most of the fourth quarter in the first game of a back-to-back. Detroit hosts Golden State on Saturday, with Stephen Curry expected to return to the Warriors' lineup. Wendall Carter scored a career-high 28 points for the Bulls, who lost their fifth straight. Chicago also plays Saturday, traveling to Texas to face the Houston Rockets. Jackson set the...Keep on reading: Drummond, Griffin lead Pistons in rout of Bulls.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsDec 1st, 2018

Richardson scores 27, leads Heat past Pistons 120-115 in OT

By Bob Duff, Associated Press DETROIT (AP) — Josh Richardson scored 27 points to lead the short-handed Miami Heat past the Detroit Pistons 120-115 in overtime Monday night (Tuesday, PHL time). Richardson hit four free throws in the final 2.1 seconds to clinch it, ending Miami’s three-game skid. Detroit has dropped five in a row. The Heat played without center Hassan Whiteside, who is second in the NBA in rebounding (14.6 per game) and blocked shots (2.75). Whiteside missed the game with an injured right knee. Kelly Olynyk, filling Whiteside’s spot on the floor, scored 10 of his 13 points in the second half. Goran Dragic had 21 points and 15-year veteran Dwyane Wade, playing his farewell NBA season, contributed 18 off the bench. Andre Drummond had 25 points for Detroit, and the NBA rebounding leader pulled down a game-high 24 boards. Reggie Jackson scored 25 and Langston Galloway added 21 off the bench. Blake Griffin, second in the league in scoring, had 24 points before fouling out in the fourth quarter. Miami used a strong third quarter to take control of a game that was tied 53-all at halftime, carrying an 87-80 advantage into the fourth quarter — a lead the Heat increased to 12. The Pistons clawed their way back into it, and after Wade missed two free throws with 19.5 seconds to play and the Heat ahead 105-103, Detroit sent the game to overtime on a put-back by Drummond with 0.5 seconds left on the clock. TIP-INS Heat: It was Miami’s first victory in Detroit’s new Little Caesars Arena, which opened last season. . Wade and forward Udonis Haslem were both part of the Heat team that beat the Pistons in the 2006 Eastern Conference final. . Heat forward James Johnson (sports hernia surgery) and guard Dion Waiters (left ankle surgery) have yet to play this season. Pistons: G Reggie Bullock missed his second straight game with an ankle sprain. G Luke Kennard (right shoulder separation) sat out his fifth successive game. . Griffin and Milwaukee guard Giannis Antetokounmpo are the only NBA players averaging at least 25 points, 10 rebounds and four assists. . Pistons rookie guard Bruce Brown, who made his third start of the season, played college ball at Miami. UP NEXT Heat: Home against San Antonio on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). Pistons: At Orlando on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 6th, 2018

DA s 2018 NBA Offseason Rankings: The Bottom 10

By David Aldridge, TNT Analyst Wonder what the rental market is like in San Luis Obispo, Calif. San Luis Obispo is, give or take a few miles, one of the closest cities that is near the midway point between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Given the events of the NBA’s offseason, it’s not hare to imagine national reporters are going to be spending a lot of time in California next season, bouncing back and forth between the Bay and L.A. Catch LeBron James and the Lakers on Wednesday and then, Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and the Warriors on Thursday. The Western Conference only got stronger and deeper with James leaving Cleveland for a second time, this time to go to the Lakers. Add four of the top five Draft picks -- including No. 1 overall selection Deandre Ayton (Phoenix Suns), No. 2 pick Marvin Bagley III (Sacramento Kings) and international phenom Luka Doncic (No. 3 pick, acquired by Dallas Mavericks) -- going to Western Conference teams, and the talent disparity between conferences only seems greater. But did Eastern Conference teams take advantage of Cleveland deflating to make their teams better? And how effective were West teams in making their teams better prepared to at least compete with the Warriors? That’s where this year’s Offseason Rankings come in -- big, bold, definitive. You love them, if the amount of hate tweets and e-mails I get after they’re published are any indication. Every year, we rank how all 30 teams have done since the end of their respective seasons. We look at everything -- how they drafted, what trades they made, what players they signed in free agency, and for how much -- or if they didn’t participate in free agency much at all. We look at if they’ve changed coaches, executives, owners, or if they’re moving into a new building that can generate big revenues. And you have to decide which ones you liked the most. Here's what these rankings ARE NOT: A predicted order of finish for next season. It's an opinion that seeks to answer a question: is the team better now than at the end of last season? The ranking reflects the belief on whether, and how much, that is so. (I liked certain guys who were in the Draft more than others, so if your team took them, I probably weighed it more positively. Doesn't mean I'm right.) I do not expect the Suns, for example, to have a better record than the Celtics, just because they had a better summer. It is not a ranking of the teams in order from 1 through 30 right now; I do not believe the Mavericks are now a better team than Rockets. This is just one person’s opinion about offseason moves -- offseason moves only. Is your team better now than it was before? - If your team is ranked in the top 10, it doesn't mean I love your team.       - If your team is ranked in the bottom 10, it doesn't mean I hate your team. It's an opinion that seeks to answer a question: is the team better now than at the end of last season? The ranking reflects the belief on whether, and how much, that is so. (I liked certain guys who were in the Draft more than others, so if your team took them, I probably weighed it more positively. Doesn't mean I'm right.) What plays into the rankings: - This isn’t science. It’s an educated guess, weighing the impact both of the Draft and free agency, but also assessing whether teams got value in their free-agent signings. Overpaying the right player is as much a sin as signing the wrong player. A good new coach can coax some more wins out of a roster. But if a team’s players don’t believe in the system their team uses, the best Xs and Os on earth don’t matter.       - Teams that are rebuilding obviously have different priorities than teams making a championship push. That's factored in. So Chicago, for example, gets credit for adding young, affordable players as it stockpiles its talent -- but that talent has to fit together, as Wendell Carter Jr. does with Lauri Markannen. And a team like the Warriors that shows it’s willing to go deep into the luxury tax -- which most teams try to avoid -- in order to keep winning has to be commended, and its rankings reflect that commendation.       - Continuity matters here as well. The most successful teams usually not only identify a core group of players, they keep them together for a while, finding that sweet spot: everyone doesn’t get a max contract, but most get paid well enough to keep the train moving down the tracks. That reflects both good roster construction and good financial management -- and, again, is rewarded. The explosion in the cap means everyone has to spend; keeping your powder dry for another day doesn’t have as much cache as it used to. But you still have to manage your money wisely. Salary numbers, with a couple of exceptions, come from Basketball Insiders, whose Eric Pincus does the best job of anyone in the game of keeping track of all the moving financial parts, quickly and accurately -- which is why we use him at NBA TV during the Draft and free agency to tell us what the hell this all means. The Bottom 10 * * * 21. DETROIT PISTONS 2017-18 RECORD: 39-43; missed playoffs ADDED: Coach Dwane Casey; New executive Ed Stefanski; G Bruce Brown (No. 42 pick, 2018 Draft); G Jose Calderon (one year, $2.3 million); C Zaza Pachulia (one year, $2.3 million); G/F Glenn Robinson III (two years, $8.3 million); G Khyri Thomas (No. 38 pick, 2018 Draft) LOST: Former coach Stan Van Gundy; G Dwight Buycks (waived); F/C Eric Moreland (waived); F Anthony Tolliver (signed with Wolves) RETAINED: None THE KEY MAN: F Blake Griffin. And he will be for some time. The Pistons need him to be his former All-Star self again, able to take slower defender to the basket, able to stretch the floor if he plays the five in small-ball lineups. They need him to be a playmaker, to get Reggie Jackson more looks off the ball and Andre Drummond some high-low lobs at the rim. They need him to sell tickets at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit’s revitalized downtown -- a building that seems to be more for the NHL’s Red Wings than the NBA’s Pistons. And they need Griffin to be an anchor that draws players to the Motor City during the life of his extension. THE SKINNY: Owner Tom Gores agonized over firing Van Gundy, but he finally did so, and was fortunate that Casey was available and willing to step right back into the fray after being cashiered in Toronto. Casey will be quite in his element building a defense around Drummond, but, like Van Gundy, Casey will need Jackson to stay healthy; he’s missed a combined 67 games the last two seasons. Detroit did well for not having a first-round pick to come out of the Draft with two solid guard prospects deep in the second in Thomas and Brown. However, the new coaching staff will have to get more out of the team’s last three first-rounders: Stanley Johnson (2015), Henry Ellenson (2016) and Luke Kennard (2017). 22. BOSTON CELTICS 2017-18 RECORD: 55-27; lost in Eastern Conference finals ADDED: G Brad Wanamaker (one year, $838,000); C Robert Williams (No. 27 pick, 2018 Draft) LOST: G Shane Larkin (signed to play in Turkey); F Abdel Nader (traded to Thunder) RETAINED: C Aron Baynes (two years, $10.6 million); F Jabari Bird (two years, $3 million), G Marcus Smart (four years, $52 million) THE KEY MAN: F Gordon Hayward. All indications are he’s well on his way back from that horrific injury he suffered on opening night last season. He can do so many great things in coach Brad Stevens’ system, and if he’s 100 percent by the playoffs, Boston may well be the one team that can match up, player for player, with Golden State in a Finals meeting. (Remember this when people inevitably say I ranked the Celtics 23rd in offseason moves.) THE SKINNY: Boston got its biggest work done after Smart couldn’t loosen up an offer sheet from the Sacramento Kings or Dallas Mavericks, and eventually worked out a deal for less than he sought to return. Smart’s deal puts Boston in the tax for the foreseeable future, but the Celtics knew that was the next step in keeping a Finals-capable core group together. With Kyrie Irving and Hayward expected back on line Stevens can throw so many different lineups out there, all committed to stifling opponent movement with long, switching defenders led by Smart, Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum. Williams was worth an end of the first flier, though he didn’t get off to a great start. If he gets a good wake-up alarm on his phone, he has a chance to be the Celtics’ center of the future. 23. PHILADELPHIA 76ERS 2017-18 RECORD: 52-30; lost in Eastern Conference semifinals ADDED: F Wilson Chandler (acquired from Nuggets); F/C Mike Muscala (acquired from Hawks); G Zhaire Smith (No. 16 pick, 2018 Draft); G Landry Shamet (No. 26 pick, 2018 Draft); G Shake Milton (No. 54 pick, 2018 Draft) LOST: Former GM Bryan Colangelo (resigned); F Justin Anderson (traded to Hawks); G Marco Belinelli (signed with Spurs); F/C Richaun Holmes (traded to Suns); F Ersan Ilyasova (signed with Bucks); G/F Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (traded to Thunder) RETAINED: C/F Amir Johnson (one year, $1.5 million); G T.J. McConnell (picked up team option); G J.J. Redick (one year, $12.2 million) THE KEY MAN: G Markelle Fultz. His rookie year laid waste by a combination of injury and the yips -- which the Sixers have finally copted to -- Fultz is reportedly rebuilding his shot successfully under the learned eye of development coach Drew Hansen. If that carries over to the fall, Fultz will get a true opportunity (he had some cameos late in his rookie season) to show a skeptical Philly fan base he was worth the top pick in 2017, and worth Philly trading up to get him. He definitely could fill a need with the 76ers for a second playmaker to go with and occasionally in place of reigning Kia Rookie of the Year winner Ben Simmons. But if Fultz has another setback, physically or otherwise, it will be hard for him to stick much longer in Philly -- not a town known for patient reflection with regard to its sports teams. THE SKINNY: Coach Brett Brown was quite clear when he said the Sixers were hunting for a superstar this summer with the cap space they’d assiduously cleared the last couple of years. But the summer has come and gone and there’s no LeBron, no Kawhi, no trade, at least not yet, for Jimmy Butler or anyone else at that level. Belinelli and Ilyasova both played huge roles for Philly in the playoffs; maybe Fultz (see above) takes on some of that role, and Chandler will help. But this doesn’t feel like a successful offseason for one of the real risers in the East. 24. PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS 2017-18 RECORD: 49-33; lost in first round ADDED: G Seth Curry (one year, $2.7 million); G Nik Stauskas (one year, $1.6 million); G Anfernee Simons (No. 24 pick, 2018 Draft); G Gary Trent Jr. (No. 37 pick, 2018 Draft) LOST: G/F Pat Connaughton (signed with Bucks); F/C Ed Davis (signed with Nets); G Shabazz Napier (signed with Nets); C Georgios Papagiannis (waived) RETAINED: C Jusuf Nurkic (four years, $48 million) THE KEY MAN: Assistant coaches David Vanterpool, Nate Tibbets, Dale Osbourne, Jim Moran, John McCullough and Jonathan Yim. With the Blazers mostly landlocked the next two seasons -- they’re currently above the projected luxury tax line both for next season and 2019-20 -- there aren’t likely going to be many significant roster changes for a while. And in the West, especially, standing pat is often falling behind. It will thus fall to Portland’s excellent staff behind coach Terry Stotts to maximize the production of the current group. They can point with some pride to success stories like Will Barton and Allen Crabbe, now in Denver and Brooklyn, respectively, along with Maurice Harkless and Al-Faroqu Aminu. For Portland to take another step up, they’ll have to coach up someone like 2017 first-rounder Zach Collins or this year’s first-rounder, Simons. They must have them exceed expectations to become a third legit star behind Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum. THE SKINNY: Lillard insists the rumblings heard in some quarters that he’s unhappy in Portland aren’t true, and the franchise better hope he’s being honest. The decisions the Blazers made in 2016 continue to lock them in place; if they catch a favorable first-round matchup (a grumbling Rockets team in 2014; an injury-strafed Clippers squad in 2016), they can advance a round. But last year’s 4-0 sweep by the New Orleans Pelicans had to give everyone pause. How does Portland respond mentally? Re-upping Big Nurk in the middle on a very reasonable deal -- $12 million for a starting center was the going rate five years ago, when the Wolves gave Nikola Pekovic a five-year, $60 million contract -- was necessary. But losing Davis, a locker room and fan favorite for superior work ethic, will hurt, even though Collins should sop up a lot of those minutes. 25. ORLANDO MAGIC 2017-18 RECORD: 25-57; missed playoffs ADDED: Coach Steve Clifford; C Mohamed Bamba (No. 6 pick, 2018 Draft); G Isaiah Briscoe (three years, $3.9 million); F Melvin Frazier (No. 35 pick, 2018 Draft); F Jerian Grant (acquired from Bulls); F Justin Jackson (No. 43 pick, 2018 Draft); F Jarrell Martin (acquired from Grizzlies); C Timofey Mozgov (acquired from Hornets) LOST: C Bismack Biyombo (traded to Hornets); G Mario Hezonja (signed with Knicks); C Dakari Johnson (traded to Grizzlies); G Shelvin Mack (waived); G Rodney Purvis (traded to Thunder) RETAINED: F Aaron Gordon (four years, $82 million) THE KEY MAN: G D.J. Augustin. A vet’s vet, he’s played 10 years in the league and started 226 games for eight teams, including 56 over the last two for the Magic. He’ll enter this season as the unquestioned starter at the point with Elfrid Payton in New Orleans and Orlando still looking to solve its long-term search for a point guard. It’s Augustin’s turn. THE SKINNY: At some point, Orlando’s yearly gambles on size and potential will pay off. Bamba could be the goods; he’s got a demeanor and toughness that should keep him together while he learns the craft at the pro level. But -- again -- it will take some time for Bamba, like 2017 first-rounder Jonathan Isaac, and Gordon, in whom Orlando invested a sizeable sum in July, to flourish. And Magic fans rightly can ask exactly how long they’re to remain patient. Clifford is supposed to improve the defense, but so was Frank Vogel … and so was Scott Skiles … and so was Jacque Vaughn. 26. NEW ORLEANS PELICANS 2017-18 RECORD: 48-34; lost in Western Conference semifinals ADDED: G Tony Carr (No. 51 pick, 2018 Draft); G Elfrid Payton (one year, $3 million); F Julius Randle (two years, $17 million) LOST: C DeMarcus Cousins (signed with Warriors); G Rajon Rondo (signed with Lakers) RETAINED: G Ian Clark (one year, $1.7 million); F Nikola Mirotic (picked up player option) THE KEY MAN: Owner Gayle Benson. Mrs. Benson took control of the team after the death of her husband, Tom, last March. She displayed great grace in the days and weeks after Tom Benson’s death, making it clear at the time she had no interest in selling the team and would continue to make outlays to keep the team competitive. The Pels didn’t blink last summer giving Jrue Holiday $126 million, and that will have to remain the case going forward if New Orleans is to repeat its surprising run to the Western Conference semifinals last spring. THE SKINNY: Can’t lose your starting point guard and your starting All-Star center in one offseason -- no matter what the circumstances -- and come out of it with high offseason marks. And especially when Rondo seemed like the perfect fit for the team. Mirotic mentioned during the Warriors series how good Rondo was at picking him up and connecting him quickly with the team after he was traded to New Orleans from Chicago. And, yes, coach Alvin Gentry mentioned he may have exchanged cusses with Rondo every now and again, too. Life in RondoWorld. The path forward is narrower, but not impassible; Randle can be tantalizing at times, maddening at others, but he could plug-and-play at the four, and he can take some of the playmaking burden off of Holiday. But big minutes on the ball for Holiday again is not what New Orleans had in mind. Payton is going to have to perform immediately. And losing “Boogie” Cousins is a big minus. It’s not what the Pelicans gave up to get him. It’s the fit and flow he had with Anthony Davis before the injury, and what the promise of a return this season could have meant toward carrying the momentum of last year forward. 27. MINNESOTA TIMBERWOLVES 2017-18 RECORD: 47-35; lost in first round ADDED: F Anthony Tolliver (one year, $5.7 million); G Josh Okogie (No. 20 pick, 2018 Draft); F Keita Bates-Diop (No. 48 pick, 2018 Draft) LOST: C Cole Aldrich (waived); F Nemanja Bjelica (signed with Kings) RETAINED: G Derrick Rose (one year, $1.5 million) THE KEY MAN: Vikings QB Kirk Cousins. He signed for big, big money by NFL standards (three years, $84 million), and the Vikings have Super Bowl aspirations. So all the light will be on the Vikes most of the fall and winter in Minneapolis, keeping it off of the still-young Wolves, who won’t be able to sneak up on anyone after breaking their long postseason drought. THE SKINNY: The Wolves should be positioned to build on their playoff run, especially if Butler can get through a full season healthy and Karl-Anthony Towns adds consistency to his prodigious talents. But they didn’t do much in the offseason, and the team that they beat out on the last day of the regular season, Denver, looks to be much improved. Tolliver should help the Wolves’ depth; they essentially traded him for Bjelica, and he shot slightly better on 3-poiners last season than Belly. Plus, they don’t come better as a guy than Tolliver and he can help Minnesota in the locker room. The issue of Butler’s contract isn’t going away; there will be a reckoning at some point, and he’ll have a lot more options next summer than free agents had this summer. Until then, coach Tom Thibodeau has pretty much the same team that he has to cajole better defense out of next season (22nd in Defensive Rating; 17th in points allowed). 28. CHARLOTTE HORNETS 2017-18 RECORD: 36-46; missed playoffs ADDED: Coach James Borrego; GM Mitch Kupchack; C Bismack Biyombo (acquired from Magic); F Miles Bridges (No. 12 pick, 2018 Draft); G Devonte' Graham (No. 34 pick, 2018 Draft); F Arnoldas Kulboka (No. 55 pick, 2018 Draft); ; G Tony Parker (two years, $10.2 milliion) LOST: G Michael Carter-Williams (signed with Rockets); C Dwight Howard (traded to Nets); C Timofey Mozgov (traded to Magic); G Julyan Stone (traded to Bulls) RETAINED: None THE KEY MAN: C Cody Zeller. It’s a guess -- Borrego could opt for Frank Kaminsky III -- but Zeller would seem to be the replacement at center for Dwight Howard, who wound up in Washington after the Hornets traded him to the Nets. Zeller started 58 games two years ago and was very good in screen and rolls with Kemba Walker. Zeller only played in 33 games last season because of a left knee injury; if he returns to form, the Hornets could pick up offensively and actually have a little more diversity at that end than last season. THE SKINNY: Team owner Michael Jordan cleaned house after a disappointing 2017-18, bringing another Tar Heel back home in the veteran Kupchak. Kupchak dispatched Howard and then got Mozgov’s guaranteed 2019-20 season off his books to take back Biyombo, who’d left Toronto two years ago for $72 million from the Magic and who’s got a player option for 2019-20. Well before then, the Hornets are going to have to decide what to do with Walker, who’ll be one of the top free agents available next summer if Charlotte can’t get him re-signed or extended. The Hornets were 8.8 points worse when the two-time All-Star was off the court rather than on. Nicolas Batum has to make a return to the all-around talent that enticed Charlotte to trade for him and give him a $120 million extension; he averaged just 11.6 points per game last year, his lowest in three years. Howard’s presence in the paint may have clogged things up some, but that’s no longer the case. 29. CLEVELAND CAVALIERS 2017-18 RECORD: 50-32; lost in The Finals ADDED: F Channing Frye (one year, $2.3 million); G Collin Sexton (No. 8 pick, 2018 Draft) LOST: G Jose Calderon (signed with Pistons); F Jeff Green (signed with Wizards); F LeBron James (signed with Lakers); C Kendrick Perkins (waived); F Okaro White (waived) RETAINED: F Kevin Love (contract extension) THE KEY MAN: GM Koby Altman. Altman has a blank slate now after trying to steer a championship-contending ship that had been stripped of a few propeller blades in the last 13 months. With James gone, as well as former GM David Griffin, the 35-year-old Altman has team owner Dan Gilbert’s charge to rebuild the Cavs without taking them down to the studs (as the Cavs did after James first departure in 2010). Altman’s next task after working out Kevin Love’s $130 million extension is clearing the roster of all the veterans brought in the last three years mainly because of their ability to play off of James. THE SKINNY: There weren’t any widespread jersey burnings this time in the Land. James left for L.A. with relative good will from his hometown, having delivered the championship it had waited 52 years for in 2016. Truly, the Cavs’ rebuild started the minute Kyrie Irving demanded a trade; last season seemed more rearguard action than an attack at another title. Extending Love through 2023 with no outs -- keeping him locked with rookie Sexton through the latter’s last controllable season before hitting unrestricted free agency -- gives Cleveland a base upon which to build. Cap room will follow in 2019, but next season will be difficult; Sexton has a lot of toughness and potential, but rookie point guards tend to get their lunch handed to them. 30. MIAMI HEAT 2017-18 RECORD: 44-38; lost in first round ADDED: None LOST: None RETAINED: G Wayne Ellington (one year, $6.2 million); F/G Derrick Jones Jr. THE KEY MAN: G Josh Richardson. Like many of his teammates, Richardson got an extension a couple of years ago -- four years and $42 million. Last season, he was (again) a solid two-way player for Miami -- almost 13 points per game, 84.5 percent from the line, 37.8 percent on 3-pointers. But if the Heat is going to shake out of the middle lane in which it currently seems stuck, Richardson will have to expand. Miami’s current roster makes it complicated; Pat Riley thinks Richardson’s probably more of a two, but he plays mostly three for coach Erik Spoelstra because Miami’s best lineups were small ball ones. Another offseason at P3 in California will help Richardson continue his development. THE SKINNY: No, Heat people: I don’t hate your team. But when you have no Draft picks, and you have no cap space, and thus you literally could do nothing in the offseason, and basically did nothing in the offseason, and your biggest, most newsy event was whether your 36-year-old future Hall of Fame guard will come back for one more season or play over in China … well, what am I supposed to do with that information? Rank you first? The question is, how much better is your team now than it was at the end of last season? It’s essentially the same team; other than the likes of Richardson (see above) or Justise Winslow, it’s not like there’s a great step up expected from Hassan Whiteside or Goran Dragic, is there? The Heat is not any better than last season. It isn’t any worse. It just … is. So, 30. Longtime NBA reporter, columnist and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer David Aldridge is an analyst for TNT. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 8th, 2018

Where the Eastern Conference stands after the All-Star break

With roughly a third of the regular season left to play in the NBA, here's where the Eastern Conference teams stand at the All-Star break. GOING TO THE LOTTERY #10 Charlotte Hornets 24-33 WL record (4-6 in last 10 games), 5.5 games back of #8 #11 New York Knicks 23-36 WL record (2-8 in last 10 games), 7.5 games back of #8 #12 Chicago Bulls 20-37 WL record (2-8 in last 10 games), 9.5 games back of #8 #13 Brooklyn Nets 19-40 WL record (1-9 in last 10 games), 11.5 games back of #8 The Nets of course, don't own their 2018 first-round pick. That's going to the Cleveland Cavaliers, who were able to improve their roster at the trade deadline while hanging on to that asset. Right now the pick is slotted in at #7, but there's just one game separating them and the two last-place teams, the Phoenix Suns and the Hawks. Of course, unlike those teams, Brooklyn is not incentivized to lose games and improve their draft position, and so where this selection winds up could still fluctuate wildly. #14 Orlando Magic 18-39 WL record (4-6 in last 10 games), 11.5 games back of #8 #15 Atlanta Hawks 18-41 WL record (4-6 in last 10 games), 12.5 games back of #8 ON THE CUSP OF THE PLAYOFFS #9 Detroit Pistons 28-29 WL record (6-4 in last 10 games), 1.5 games back of #8 The Pistons got a big boost from the Blake Griffin trade, helping them win the latter four games of a 5-0 stretch. After that though, they lost three in a row, including to trade partners the Clippers, before entering the break with a win over the Hawks. The biggest variable for the Pistons is point guard Reggie Jackson, who hasn't played since December 27 (PHL time) due to a right ankle sprain. He's projected to return in March, and how he fits in with Griffin and All-Star Andre Drummond will likely decide whether or not the Pistons go to the postseason. PRECARIOUS POSITION #8 Miami Heat 30-28 WL record (3-7 in last 10 games), 1.5 game cushion over #9 #7 Philadelphia 76ers 30-25 WL record (6-4 in last 10 games), 3 game cushion over #9 Two teams going in opposite directions right now. Miami had a red-hot January, winning 10 games out of 15, but have just one victory in February, versus 6 losses. In contrast, Philly has overcome a stretch where they were 3-5 spanning the last two months, and won five straight entering the break. And oh yes, the two teams played each other twice in February, with the 76ers winning both match-ups. It'll be interesting to see how Miami continues to use Dwyane Wade, whom they acquired at the trade deadline. In three games back in South Beach, Wade is averaging 7.0 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1.0 steals, and 1.0 blocks in 22 minutes. However, he's also norming a whopping 4.0 turnovers. For the 76ers, it'll obviously be on Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons to carry the load, but improved play from Robert Covington would be a great boost. His three-point shooting has decreased each month, from 46.7 percent in November, to now just 27.9 percent in February. LOOKING FOR HOMECOURT #6 Milwaukee Bucks 32-25 WL record (7-3 in last 10 games), 4 game cushion over #9 #5 Indiana Pacers 33-25 WL record (7-3 in last 10 games), 4.5 game cushion over #9 #4 Washington Wizards 33-24 WL record (7-3 in last 10 games), 5 game cushion over #9 These three squads are Playoffs-bound, but the question is which of them will snag #4 and get home court advantage in round one. Right now, the team with the most upside has to be the Washington Wizards, who have so far done well without superstar John Wall, going 7-2 while he recovers from knee surgery. If they can continue to weather the storm until he returns in mid-to-late March, they should lock up #4. HERE THEY COME... #3 Cleveland Cavaliers 34-22 WL record (7-3 in last 10 games), 6.5 games back of #1 No doubt, it's a small sample size, one game sans traded pieces but before the new acquisitions were medically cleared, and then two with their four new players, but the Cavs were rolling entering the break, and LeBron James looks locked in anew. We'll need more games to see if James indeed has better chemistry with Jordan Clarkson, Rodney Hood, Larry Nance Jr., and George Hill, and one more factor to consider is the impending return of Kevin Love from his broken hand, which will obviously necessitate changes to the amount of shots everyone gets. Right now though, the King seems to have the necessary type of players that he needs to return to the Finals anew. REGRESSING TO THE MEAN? #2 Boston Celtics 40-19 WL record (5-5 in last 10 games), 2 games back of #1 Boston has slipped from the top spot of the East in recent games, their defense suddenly giving up a ton of points to opponents. After a stretch of seven straight wins early in January, they're now just 6-9 in their last 15 outings. We'll need to see if the rest over the All-Star break gives them a boost, or if this is just the Celtics coming back down to Earth. Remember, in the aftermath of the Gordon Hayward injury, nobody expected them to play this well. That they did, and are now seeing a mini-slump, might just mean we need to adjust our expectations anew of how good this Boston team is. TORONTO ON TOP #1 Toronto Raptors 41-16 WL record (9-1 in last 10 games) Not only does Toronto have the best record in the East, they have the best home record too, dropping just four of their 28 games in Canada. In contrast, West #1 Houston Rockets have four losses, while defending champs Golden State Warriors have seven. Toronto's biggest boon, aside from DeMar DeRozan finally embracing the three-pointer, has been their bench. Right now, the five-man group of CJ Miles, Jakob Poeltl, Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet, and Delon Wright is their second-most used lineup, and it's +34.6. Their best quintet is the previously mentioned one, but with DeRozan in place of Miles (+82.5). There are still questions about how Toronto will look come the postseason. Over the past few years, DeRozan and Kyle Lowry have struggled mightily with their shot in the playoffs. Should they get there though with the #1 seed in the East, things might turn out differently. They have two more games each against Boston and Cleveland, and so the opportunity to get home court through the Eastern Conference Finals is definitely in play. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or ABS-CBN Sports......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 21st, 2018

Harden falls just short of triple-double as Rockets rout Knicks

em>By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press /em> James Harden had 36 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds, and Houston made 22 3-pointers while remaining unbeaten and keeping New York winless in the preseason, 117-95. The teams tried during the offseason to work out a trade for Carmelo Anthony. The Knicks ended up sending him to Oklahoma City, though the Rockets appear to still have plenty of firepower. Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 21 points for the Knicks. em> strong>ROCKETS: /strong> /em>Houston has made at least 22 three-pointers in all three games. No team has ever had three straight games with 20 or more in the regular season. Clint Capela had 19 points and nine rebounds, and Eric Gordon added 18 points. Zhou Qi played three minutes, getting three points. em> strong>KNICKS: /strong> /em> Michael Beasley scored 17 points before leaving with a bruised left elbow. He landed hard on a drive to the basket in the third quarter. Damyean Dotson also had 17 for New York. em> strong>UP NEXT: /strong> /em>Houston (3-0) visits Memphis on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). New York (0-4) hosts Washington on Friday (Saturday, PHL time). ___ strong>PISTONS 107, PACERS 97 /strong> Detroit outscored Indiana 30-15 from the three-point line, and had a 26-11 edge in points off turnovers. Ish Smith, Reggie Jackson and Boban Marjanovic had 14 points apiece for the Pistons. Damien Wilkins led Indiana with 14 off the bench, shooting 5-for-6 and making both of his 3-point tries. em> strong>PACERS: /strong> /em> Indiana led by 16 in the second quarter, but was outscored 71-47 in the final 25 minutes. Myles Turner, Victor Oladipo, Domantas Sabonis and Lance Stephenson all didn't play. Al Jefferson had 12 points on 6-for-14 shooting. em> strong>PISTONS: /strong> /em>Smith also had nine assists. Detroit was plus-25 in Henry Ellenson's 28 minutes. Anthony Tolliver and Reggie Bullock each scored 12 for the Pistons. em> strong>UP NEXT: /strong> /em>Indiana (2-1) hosts Maccabi Haifa on Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time). Detroit (2-1) visits Toronto on Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time). ___ strong>CELTICS 113, 76ERS 96 /strong> Hours after Philadelphia and Joel Embiid agreed on a five-year extension worth $148 million, Boston had no trouble with the 76ers and led wire-to-wire. Semi Ojeleye scored 16 for Boston, which led by as many as 34. Ben Simmons scored 15 for the 76ers, though he missed seven of his 10 free throws. em> strong>CELTICS: /strong> /em>Aron Baynes sprained his left knee in the first half. Jaylen Brown scored 12 for the Celtics, who got 15 apiece from Terry Rozier and Abdel Nader. em> strong>76ERS: /strong> /em>Furkan Korkmaz scored 13 and No. 1 overall pick Markelle Fultz added 12. The 76ers shot 28 percent from three-point range and 52 percent from the foul line. em> strong>UP NEXT: /strong> /em>Boston (3-0) visits Charlotte on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). Philadelphia (0-3) plays Brooklyn on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) in Uniondale, New York. ___ strong>HEAT 109, HORNETS 106 /strong> Justise Winslow's layup with 23.7 seconds left put Miami ahead for good, as the Heat rallied in the final minutes. Josh Richardson and Tyler Johnson each scored 18 for Miami, which got 13 from Dion Waiters and 11 points and 11 rebounds from Hassan Whiteside. Malik Monk scored 19 and Dwight Howard had 16 for Charlotte. em> strong>HORNETS: /strong> /em>All-Star guard Kemba Walker left early in the third quarter after getting hit in the face, and Jeremy Lamb left with groin soreness. Charlotte had a 29-14 edge in points off turnovers, but was 5-for-26 from three-point range. em> strong>HEAT: /strong> /em>James Johnson was called for a Flagrant-1 after a hard foul on Howard in the third quarter. The two slapped hands afterward, clearly without animosity. The rookie learning curve for Bam Adebayo continued, after he had three fouls in three first-half minutes and the Heat were outscored by 10 in that stretch. em> strong>UP NEXT: /strong> /em>Miami (2-2) hosts Washington on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). Charlotte (1-2) hosts Boston on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). ___ strong>HAWKS 100, GRIZZLIES 88 /strong> Dennis Schroder scored 21 points to lead Atlanta, which got 15 from Malcolm Delaney. James Ennis scored 14 to lead Memphis. em> strong>GRIZZLIES: /strong> /em>Memphis was only 4-for-22 from three-point range. Marc Gasol had 13 rebounds. em> strong>HAWKS: /strong> /em>Rookie John Collins got cut beneath his right eye, then returned and led the Hawks with eight rebounds. Atlanta was plus-21 in DeAndre' Bembry's 20 minutes. The game was at Georgia Tech because of renovations at the arena where the Hawks play. em> strong>UP NEXT: /strong> /em>Memphis (2-1) hosts Houston on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time). Atlanta (2-2) hosts Dallas on Thursday (Fridau, PHL time) at Georgia Tech. ___ strong>MAVERICKS 99, MAGIC 96 /strong> Dennis Smith Jr. scored 16 points, Harrison Barnes added 14 and Dirk Nowitzki added 10 for Dallas. D.J. Augustin scored 24 points for the Magic, which got 19 from Jonathon Simmons. em> strong>MAGIC: /strong> /em> Nikola Vucevic grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds. Augustin was 6-for-10 from three-point range, and Mo Speights had 15 points after shooting 4-for-7 from beyond the arc. em> strong>MAVERICKS: /strong> /em>Smith also had seven assists and six rebounds. J.J. Barea was very effective, tallying eight points and nine rebounds. Nowitzki made four of his seven shots. em> strong>UP NEXT: /strong> /em>Orlando (2-2) vists San Antonio on Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time). Dallas (3-1) visits Atlanta on Thursday (Friday, PHL time) at Georgia Tech. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 10th, 2017

Towns, Timberwolves rout short-handed Suns 118-91

By Bob Baum, Associated Press PHOENIX (AP) — Karl-Anthony-Towns had 25 points, 18 rebounds and seven assists and the Minnesota Timberwolves took an early lead and rolled past the short-handed Phoenix Suns 118-91 on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time). Josh Okogie added a career-high 21 points for the Timberwolves, who beat the Suns for the second time in a row, following a 116-114 win in Minneapolis on Sunday (Monday, PHL time), when Derrick Rose sank the game-winner on a drive at the buzzer. In both games, Phoenix was without centers Deandre Ayton (left ankle sprain) and Richaun Holmes (right foot sprain). Devin Booker scored 14 for Phoenix before he and Minnesota's Gorgui Deng were ejected with 5:24 left in the third quarter. Phoenix already trailed by 20 by then. Josh Jackson had a season-high 27 points and 10 rebounds for Phoenix, which lost its fifth straight. Kelly Oubre Jr. added 13 and Dragan Bender, who started at center, had 12 points and 10 boards. Andrew Wiggins scored 17 and Jerryd Bayless 14 for Minnesota. It was a far cry from the tight game the teams played two days earlier. The Suns never led and were down by as many as 30 in the second half. Phoenix trailed only 44-42 after Bender's three-pointer midway through the second quarter but the Timberwolves outscored the Suns 20-7 the final 6:33 of the half to lead 64-49 at the break. Towns had 20 points and 11 rebounds in the first quarters. Minnesota stretched it to 80-60 on Bayless' fourth triple of the night with 6:52 left in the third quarter. The Timberwolves led 82-62 with 5:24 left in the third quarter when Booker and Dieng got into a brief altercation, with Booker getting knocked down and responded with a hand to Dieng's face. After a video review, both were ejected. Since Booker is averaging 24.5 points per game and Dieng 5.4, Minnesota got the obvious advantage of that one. TIP-INS Timberwolves: Jeff Teague missed the game with left foot soreness. ... Tyus Jones missed his third straight game with a sprained left ankle. ... Timberwolves have another pair of consecutive games against the same opponent next week, against Utah on Friday and Sunday (Saturday and next Monday, PHL time). ... Minnesota has won 6-of-9 games. ... Timberwolves won the season series 2-1. Suns: Phoenix has had four stretches of at least five losses in a row this season. ... Booker drew a technical foul from the bench in the second quarter. ... Oubre snapped a string of seven straight games of at least 14 points, longest such stretch of his career. .... Booker is averaging 24 points and a career-high seven assists. James Harden and LeBron James are the only others to have done that so far this season. UP NEXT Timberwolves: At the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time). Suns: Host Portland Trail Blazers on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 23rd, 2019

UAAP: Sotto, Ateneo drop 44 points in first quarter to destroy UPIS

STANDINGS NU 9-1 Ateneo 8-3 FEU-Diliman 8-3 Adamson 7-4 UST 5-6 DLSZ 4-6 UE 1-10 UPIS 1-10 Ateneo de Manila High School has flown higher even as other playoff hopefuls Far Eastern University-Diliman and Adamson High School have bounced back in the UAAP 81 Juniors Basketball Tournament. The Blue Eaglets got it going from the get-go and buried the University of the Philippines Integrated School in a 44-point first quarter hole it could never get out of in a 115-68 domination on Wednesday at the Filoil Flying V Centre. Of course, Kai Sotto towered over the competition with 18 points, 11 rebounds, and five assists while frontcourt partner Geo Chiu had his own 16-marker, 11-board double-double. The backcourt also did damage with Forthsky Padrigao collecting 17points, 10 rebounds, seven assists, and two steals. With everybody clicking, the defending champions scored 11 unanswered points to begin the game before going on to total 44 points in the first quarter. In the same timeframe, the Junior Maroons would only be able to muster 15 points. From that point, the Ateneo lead would only grow as big as 51 en route to a third win in a row and eighth overall in 11 games. “I think we’re growing up already. Batang team ‘to and now, they got experience and hopefully, we can peak at the right time,” a beaming head coach Reggie Varilla said post-game. The Blue Eaglets took care of business just as the Baby Tamaraws levelled with them in the standings following a 99-82 rout of University of the East. Xyrus Torres and Bryan Sajonia were on fire for the green and yellow with 24 and 22 points, respectively, while RJ Abarrientos chipped in 13 markers and seven rebounds. Coming off their worst loss in the season, FEU-Diliman is now just one win away from clinching a playoff berth – just like the defending champions. Also getting a mighty rebound from their worst loss in the season are the Baby Falcons who weathered the storm brought about by University of Sto. Tomas, 69-67. Joem Sabandal turned in his most complete game with 23 points, 11 rebounds, six assists, and four steals while big men Lorenz Capulong and AP Manlapaz combined for 19 markers and 10 boards. Adamson only scored eight points in the final frame, but the cushion it had from a 28-point third period proved to be more than enough for them to rise to 7-4. This was an important win for them as a loss would have tied them in the standings with the Tiger Cubs. For UST, Mark Nonoy stuffed the stat sheet anew with 27 points, seven rebounds, seven steals, and four assists while Bismarck Lina posted a 13-marker, 12-board double-double. With their rally falling short, however, they fall to 5-5 in the standings. BOX SCORES FIRST GAME FEU-DILIMAN 99 – Torres 24, Sajonia 22, Abarrientos 15, Barasi 10, Bautista J. 9, Balaga 8, Tolentino 5, Ona 2, Alforque 2, Bradley 2, Anonuevo 0, Armendez 0, Bautista S. 0, Bagunu 0, Libago 0, Sicat 0. UE 82 – Dichoso 31, Sullano 19, Flores 14, Alinsoring 5, Agbas 5, Almacen 4, Tan 2, Tajonera 2, Gatdula 0, Lima 0, Santos 0, Villarta 0. QUARTER SCORES: 28-13, 52-31, 71-57, 99-82 SECOND GAME ADAMSON 69 – Sabandal 23, Doria Ad. 10, Capulong 10, Manlapaz 9, Prodigo 6, Doria An. 6, Santos 3, Barcelona 1, Tulabut 1, Dominguez 0, Engbino 0, Hanapi 0, Nitura 0. UST 67 – Nonoy 27, Lina 13, Amador 8, Benzonan 6, Manabat 5, Casingcasing 3, Estrella 2, Oliva 2, Marzan 1, Dolendo 0, Dumlao 0, Barranco 0. QUARTER SCORES: 19-19, 33-35, 61-51, 69-67 THIRD GAME ATENEO 115 – Sotto 18, Padrigao 17, David 16, Chiu 16, Jaymalin 9, Fetalvero 9, Ladimo 8, Diaz 7, Espinosa 6, Salandanan 4, Narciso 3, Lechoncito 2, Pangilinan 0, Corral 0, Coo 0 UPIS 68 – Labao 14, Tuazon 12, Vergeire 11, Torres 11, Estrera 10, Gomez de Liano 10, Armamento 0, Lopez 0, VIllaverde 0, Napalang 0, Galotera 0 QUARTER SCORES: 44-18, 65-37, 95-53, 115-68 --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 23rd, 2019

Siakam scores winning basket, Raptors beat Suns 111-109

By Ian Harrison, Associated Press TORONTO (AP) — Pascal Siakam scored the winning basket just before time expired and the Toronto Raptors beat the Phoenix Suns 111-109 on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time). Serge Ibaka put Toronto up 109-107 on a hook shot with 47 seconds left, but Mikal Bridges tied it with a pair of free throws with 13 seconds remaining. Toronto gave the ball to Siakam, whose driving shot bounced off the backboard and fell through the rim as time ran out. The basket was confirmed following a video review. Pascal Siakam attacks and flips in the #TissotBuzzerBeater to win it for the @Raptors! #ThisIsYourTime #WeTheNorth pic.twitter.com/EyCOLXhBO2— NBA (@NBA) January 18, 2019 Siakam had 10 points and 12 rebounds, Ibaka scored 22 points and Kyle Lowry had 16 points and nine rebounds for the Raptors, who have won eight straight at home and 6-of-7 overall. Devin Booker scored 30 points, Deandre Ayton had 15 points and 17 rebounds, and Kelly Oubre Jr. scored 18 for the Suns. Fred VanVleet had 15 points and C.J. Miles returned after missing three of the previous four games because of a sore right hip to score 13 as Toronto swept back-to-back season series against Phoenix for the first time. Kawhi Leonard (rest) sat as the Raptors played the second game of a back-to-back, Lowry was originally expected to rest, but told coach Nick Nurse he wanted to play as he works his way back into shape after missing time with a sore back. The Raptors are an NBA-best 8-1 in the second game of back-to-backs this season. This was their ninth of 12 such sets. Lowry finished with eight assists, giving him 5,002 for his career. He's one of 10 active players to reach the mark. Phoenix was up 78-77 to begin the fourth, but Toronto took the lead at 88-87 when the Suns' Josh Jackson fouled Toronto's Chris Boucher on a dunk with 7:50 to go. Jackson argued the call and was ejected after picking up his second technical foul. After video review, the foul on Boucher was ruled flagrant. Toronto made both its foul shots and got the ball back, with Lowry hitting a triple to put the Raptors up 95-87. The Raptors made 13-of-20 shots from the field in the first, including shooting 4-of-9 from three-point range, to lead 32-20 after one. Ayton scored seven points and Booker had six as the Suns closed the gap. Phoenix trailed 57-49 at halftime. TIP-INS Suns: Jackson scored seven points in 19 minutes before being ejected. ... G Jamal Crawford (left knee) missed his second straight game. ... Phoenix F Quincy Acy was a second round pick by Toronto in 2012. Raptors: F OG Anunoby missed his second straight game for personal reasons. ... This was the first of three straight home games against Western Conference opponents. Phoenix will be followed by Memphis and Sacramento. ... G Patrick McCaw made his Toronto debut, going scoreless in six minutes. He signed with the Raptors last Thursday (last Friday, PHL time). UP NEXT Suns: Visit Charlotte on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time). Raptors: Host Memphis on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 18th, 2019

Griffin s 26 points leads Pistons past Grizzlies 101-94

By Clay Bailey, Associated Press MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Blake Griffin had 26 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, and the Detroit Pistons beat the Memphis Grizzlies 101-94 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time) to snap a three-game skid. Griffin closed out a 13-0 Detroit run in the fourth quarter to put the game out of reach. Six Pistons finished in double-figures scoring, including Reggie Jackson scoring 16 points, and Reggie Bullock and Luke Kennard with 13 each. Jaren Jackson Jr. led Memphis with 26 points and 10 rebounds, and Kyle Anderson scored 15 points. Dillon Brooks finished with 14 points off the bench as the Grizzlies dropped their third straight. Memphis was within 83-82 right after Reggie Jackson returned with 6:30 left in the game. Kennard started the 13-0 burst, connecting on a pair of three-pointers before Jackson hit a layup to make it 91-82. That led to a Memphis timeout. Griffin scored the next five points in the rally. The Grizzlies cut into the lead, but it wasn't near enough. Memphis held a 55-51 lead at the half as Jaren Jackson and Marc Gasol had 11 points each. Griffin had 14 points for the Pistons. The Grizzlies benefitted from 58 percent shooting despite making only 3-of-10 from outside the arc. They couldn't keep up the shooting pace all night, finishing the game at 46 percent, including only 22 percent from outside the arc. The Pistons were able to pull even early in the second half and took the lead before the game settled into an exchange of leads with a trio of ties in the third period. Detroit used a quartet of three-pointers in the third to carry a 72-67 lead into the fourth. TIP-INS Pistons: C Zaza Pachulia missed his second straight game with a right lower leg contusion. F Stanley Johnson was questionable with a left thigh contusion and played almost six minutes. ... Kennard has four straight games of multiple three-pointers. ... Jackson made a three-pointer with 4:18 left in the third quarter, his fourth of the game and 500th of his career. Grizzlies: Marc Gasol has made a three-pointer in 14 straight games, eclipsing the longest such streak of his career in December of 2017. .. Memphis (18-19) dropped below .500 for the first time since losing it season opener. UP NEXT Pistons: Entertain Utah on Saturday (Sunday, PHL time). Grizzlies: Hosts the Brooklyn Nets on Friday (Saturday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2019

Embiid scores 42 points, 76ers hold off Suns 132-127

By Bob Baum, Associated Press PHOENIX (AP) — Joel Embiid, playing despite a sore left knee, matched his season high with 42 points, 30 in the first half, and grabbed 18 rebounds and the Philadelphia 76ers held off a strong second-half rally to beat the Phoenix Suns 132-127 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). Ben Simmons added 29 points and J.J. Redick 27 for the 76ers, who were without Jimmy Butler and Wilson Chandler, both due to an upper respiratory infection. Devin Booker scored 37 points for the Suns. Deandre Ayton added 18 points and 11 boards and Josh Jackson scored 16 points. Philadelphia led by 23 at halftime and as many as 30 in the third quarter. The Suns cut it to three points before Redick finally sealed the victory with a pair of free throws with 4.3 seconds to play. The 76ers shot out to a 13-3 lead and consecutive three-pointers by Simmons made it 21-8. The 76ers led 44-32 after one, matching the most point allowed by the Suns in any quarter this season. Embiid scored 10 points as Philadelphia opened the second quarter with a 13-2 run to lead 58-36 and the margin barely changed the rest of the one-sided half and the 76ers led 72-49 at the break. Phoenix finished the third quarter on a 13-2 run. Troy Daniels sank a pair of three's and Ellie Okobo added another after a Philadelphia turnover cut the lead to 104-87 after three. A 19-5 Suns run reduced the lead to 116-110 when Jackson scored on a lob pass from Booker with 3:24 to go. Furkan Korkmaz sank a three-pointer, Phoenix turned it over and Embiid's dunk boosted it to 121-110. Booker's three-pointer cut the lead to 129-125 with 14.3 seconds, Redick made one of two free throws and Booker scored on a put-back to make it 130-127. Redick put it out of reach with his two final shots from the line. TIP-INS 76ers: Embiid's career high is 46 set last season. He scored 42 against Charlotte on Nov. 9 (Nov. 10, PHL time). ... Philadelphia wrapped up a 3-2 trip. ... 76ers shot 77 percent in the first quarter (13-of-17), including 4-of-5 three's. ... Embiid was 17-of-19 from the line, 12-of-14 in the first half. Suns: Also allowed 44 points in the second quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers on Oct. 24 (Oct. 25, PHL time). ... Phoenix's only lead was 2-0. ... Most points Suns have allowed in a half is 76, also in that game against the Lakers. ... The first 5,000 fans received Ayton bobbleheads. ... After winning 5-of-7, Phoenix has lost the first four of a seven-game homestand. UP NEXT 76ers: Host Dallas on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time). Suns: Host the Los Angeles Clippers on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 3rd, 2019

Lopez has 25, Giannis monster dunk as Bucks beat Pistons

By Rich Rovito, Associated Press MILWAUKEE (AP) — Brook Lopez had 25 points, Giannis Antetokounmpo threw down a spectacular one-handed dunk and the Milwaukee Bucks cruised past the Detroit Pistons 121-98 on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time). Khris Middleton had 22 points and Eric Bledsoe had 18 for Milwaukee. Antetokounmpo had just 15 points, but his slam over Jon Leuer was the highlight of the night. Antetokounmpo blew past Andre Drummond, jumped and reached his right arm over a leaping Leuer for the slam during the first quarter. Did @Giannis_An34 just throw down the POSTER OF THE YEAR!?!#FearTheDeer pic.twitter.com/anVvi6nNO6 — Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) January 2, 2019 Milwaukee has won four straight and 8-of-9. The Bucks are an NBA-best 26-10. Blake Griffin had 29 points and nine rebounds, and Reggie Jackson scored 19 points for Detroit, which fell to 16-19. After leading 92-73 after three quarters, the Bucks built a 28-point lead midway through the fourth. Lopez made 7-of-12 shots from three-point range and capped off the night by nailing a shot from beyond the sideline hashmark in the fourth. The Bucks pulled away in the second quarter, leading by as many as 21 points. They held a 68-52 advantage at the break after making 70 percent of their first-half shots. Milwaukee made 15-of-20 shots (75 percent) to grab a 35-27 lead after the first quarter. Lopez made all three of his three-point attempts in the quarter. TIP-INS Pistons: C Zaza Pachulia (right lower-leg contusion) sat out and is also likely to miss Wednesday's (Thursday, PHL time) game at Memphis, coach Dwane Casey said. Pachulia had an MRI on Monday (Tuesday, PHL time). ... G Ish Smith, who has been out since Dec. 7 (Dec. 8, PHL time) with an abductor muscle tear, is making progress in his rehabilitation. ... Griffin fell to the court early in the second quarter holding his knee at the same time teammate Jose Calderon writhed in pain after getting hit in the face. Later in the quarter, Griffin again fell to the floor, this time holding his face after colliding with Antetokounmpo. Bucks: F Ersan Ilyasova has returned to practice but remains out of game action after having surgery to repair a broken nose. Ilyasova hasn't played since Dec. 14 (Dec. 15, PHL time). ... Thon Maker received a technical foul in the fourth quarter for arguing. UP NEXT Pistons: Visit Memphis on Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) in the first matchup of the teams this season. Bucks: Host Atlanta on Friday (Saturday, PHL time) as Milwaukee coach Mike Budenholzer goes against his former team for the first time......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 2nd, 2019

Westbrook scores 40, Thunder pull away to beat Suns

By Bob Baum, Associated Press PHOENIX (AP) — Russell Westbrook scored 40 points, 15 in the game's final 6.5 minutes, and the Oklahoma City Thunder pulled away to beat the Phoenix Suns 118-102 on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). Dennis Schroder scored 14 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter and the Thunder snapped a two-game skid despite the absence of Paul George, who missed his first game of the season due to a right quad contusion. Abdel Nader scored a career-high 18 for the Thunder. Devin Booker had 25 points and 10 assists for the Suns, had a three-point lead after three quarters but were outscored 37-18 in the fourth. T.J. Warren scored 19 and Deandre Ayton 16 for Phoenix, which had won five of its previous seven games after opening the season 4-24. The Thunder swept the four-game season series from the Suns. Schroder scored 10, including a pair of three's, in what proved to be the decisive 17-2 fourth-quarter run that put Oklahoma City ahead 102-88 with 6:09 to play. Westbrook capped the outburst with a triple and pretty much took over the game from there. The Suns' reserves were the main contributors in a 16-4 second-quarter run. Nader converted a three-point play then scored again inside to put the Thunder up 43-35 with 10:02 left in the first half. But Josh Jackson sank a 19-footer, followed by a three-pointer, to ignite the surge. Booker also hit a three-pointer and Mikal Bridges scored from the baseline to put the Suns ahead 51-47 with 5:22 to go. There were five lead changes the rest of the half, with Oklahoma City leading 58-57 at the break. Phoenix scored the first six points of the second half to lead 63-55 and was up 82-77 after Warren's 3-pointer, but Raymond Felton's steal and layup cut it to 82-79. The Suns led 84-81 entering the fourth. TIP-INS Thunder: Terrance Ferguson left the game due to stomach illness in the first quarter. Alex Abrines missed his second straight game due to stomach illness. ... Oklahoma City has not lost three in a row since starting the season 0-4. ... Thunder have beaten Phoenix six straight times. ... George had started all 33 games this season. ... Schroder made 3-of-12 shots in the first three quarters, 5-of-6 in the fourth. Suns: The Suns opened a season-long, seven-game home stand after a 3-2 road trip. ... Booker missed his first six shots and was 1-for-7 shooting in the first quarter but with six assists. ... Phoenix had won more games in the last seven than it had in the previous 28. ... Kelly Oubre Jr. was 2-of-8 shooting, 0-of-4 on three's, for four points in his home debut for the Suns. UP NEXT Thunder: At Dallas on Sunday (Monday, PHL time). Suns: Host Denver on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 29th, 2018

Rookie Ladder: Ayton, others starting to make their move

By Drew Packham, NBA.com It’s been two weeks since I checked in on this entertaining rookie class, and I appreciate the readers who took the time to point out my absence last week. Let’s me know someone’s paying attention, I guess. (My bad. I was off getting married and honeymooning.) And while I was making major life decisions and fracturing a rib trying to surf in Sayulita, Mexico, I was also keeping a watch on the rookies making moves in their new lives in the NBA. And things are not getting any easier when it comes to ranking these guys. Unlike my “Ultimate Wedding Dance Party” playlist I curated on Spotify (which was incredible, by the way, thanks in large part to this song), there’s no simple shuffle button I can hit each week. I feel like I say this every week, but we’re truly lucky with this rookie class. There is so much talent, variety and skill among the class, with so many rookies doing so many things well, that my job of judging them against each other is becoming increasingly difficult. Looking back to two weeks ago, for example, I’m surprised to remember that Deandre Ayton was on the fourth rung. Sure, Wendell Carter and Trae Young had had some big performances (and the Ladder does have a built-in recency bias), but Ayton has since bounced back and put together enough solid games to make a serious run at No. 1. Luka Doncic holds on to the top spot for now, but unlike saying “I do” to my wife or choosing “Ooh La La” by Faces for our first dance, it wasn’t an easy decision. * * * 1. Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks Last edition: No. 1 Doncic almost lost his grip on this spot due to some spotty shooting, but the fact that the Mavericks have won six of their last eight -- including wins over the Golden State Warriors, Oklahoma City and Utah Jazz -- bolstered his case. He’s had at least nine rebounds in each of his last three games and continues to come up with big plays down the stretch of these wins. The Mavs trust him, and it’s easy to see why. He continues to lead rookies in scoring (19.3 ppg), is third in rebounding (6.9) and second in assists (4.1). Ayton is gaining ground on him, and the gap is narrowing with every dominant double-double from the Suns’ big man. 2. Deandre Ayton, Phoenix Suns Last edition: No. 4 Ayton climbs two rungs after two weeks of solid play. The more opportunities I have to watch Ayton, the more I leave impressed and certain he’ll be a star in this league for many years. He’s still struggling to defend like you’d hope from a seven-footer (just three blocks in last eight games), but the offensive numbers back him as a force inside. Over his last seven games, Ayton is averaging 17.3 ppg and 9.9 rpg while shooting 64 percent. 3. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, LA Clippers Last edition: Not ranked It’s looking like the Clippers might have found their answer at point guard. Taken with the 11th pick, Gilgeous-Alexander has stepped up and seems to have locked down the starting point guard job. At 6'6", he has the size to defend and has shown the ability to navigate the pick-and-roll, hitting 50 percent of his mid-range jumpers to date. Over his last seven games, he’s averaged 14.1 points on 50 percent shooting as the Clippers had won five straight before Tuesday’s (Wednesday, PHL time) 125-118 loss to the Washington Wizards. Gilgeous-Alexander's season numbers aren’t eye-popping (10.5 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 2.8 apg), but he’s carrying himself and leading the Clippers like a veteran. 4. Jaren Jackson Jr., Memphis Grizzlies Last edition: Just missed cut Jackson makes a jump this week thanks to one of the young big man’s best games as well as because of the subpar play from Young and Carter. In a 112-104 win over the Kings last week, Jackson scored 27 points with six rebounds, four steals and a pair of blocks. He made 11-of-16 shots and was a force the Kings couldn’t solve. Before Jackson scored nine points in just 12 minutes of Wednesday’s (Thursday, PHL time) win over the Spurs, he’d scored in double-digits in eight of his last 10 games. The Grizzlies are a surprise atop the Western Conference standings, and their young big man is a big reason for that. 5. Trae Young, Atlanta Hawks Last edition: No. 3 Young is in a serious funk right now. He’s scored in double-digits just once in his past five games, hitting just 27 percent of his shots and five percent -- yes, five -- of his three's (1-for-20). The talent is clearly there, as his lone breakout game in that span was an impressive 25-point, 17-assist performance in a 127-119 loss to the Clippers. Young became the first rookie since Allen Iverson to record at least 25 and 15 in a game, and the 17 assists are the most by any player this season. Although his averages place him among the rookie leaders, more weeks of poor shooting like this one won’t help him fend off more consistent rookies. Just missed the cut: Wendell Carter Jr., Chicago Bulls Carter slides out of the Top 5, but he’s still putting up decent numbers for the struggling Bulls. He ranks second in both rebounds (7.4) and blocks (1.9) per game, but his field-goal percentage is low for a big man (46.5 percent). Collin Sexton, Cleveland Cavaliers Sexton has been one of the leading rookie scorers over the past two weeks, with 17.6 ppg over his last seven games (second among rookies in that span). He’s doing it by shooting 46.2 percent overall and 60 percent on 3-pointers. Marvin Bagley III, Sacramento Kings Bagley had 15 points, 13 rebounds and three blocks in the Kings’ 117-113 win over the Thunder. It was Bagley’s first career double-double and he’s scored in double-digits in his last three games. Aaron Holiday, Indiana Pacers With Victor Oladipo nursing a sore right knee, Holiday has stepped in admirably and deserves some credit for his recent play. In his last three games, he's averaged 14 ppg and 5.3 rpg in 20.1 minutes per game. Hamidou Diallo, Oklahoma City Thunder Diallo gets an honorary spot this week after suffering a gruesome looking (but not serious) leg injury in Wednesday night’s (Thursday, PHL time) rout of the Warriors. There's no word on if he'll miss time, though. Diallo had become a fixture in the rotation, starting in OKC's previous two games. In Monday’s (Tuesday, PHL time) win over Sacramento, he scored 18 points, becoming the first Thunder rookie to go at least 7-for-7 from the field. * * * (All stats through Wednesday, Nov. 21) Send any questions or comments to my email or find me on Twitter @drewpackham. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 23rd, 2018

Harden s 43 points leads Rockets over Pistons 126-124

By Kristie Rieken, Associated Press HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden scored a season-high 43 points and Clint Capela added 27 as the Houston Rockets held off the Detroit Pistons to get their fifth straight win, 126-124 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). Houston has won eight of its last 10 after winning just one of its first six games and improved to 9-7 this season. The Rockets led by 14 with about five minutes left, but Blake Griffin made five three-pointers that helped Detroit cut the lead to four points with about 90 seconds left. Houston struggled to contain Griffin late after defensive stopper P.J. Tucker was ejected in the third quarter after he received two technical fouls for arguing with officials. But Griffin had a turnover and a charge after his fifth triple and Harden, who made all 19 of his free throw attempts, made two free throws to make it 122-116 with 19.1 seconds left. Ish Smith added a three-pointer to cut the lead to three points with 9.6 seconds left, but Harden made two more free throws. Griffin was fouled on a three-point attempt with 3.6 seconds remaining and made the first two free throws before missing the third. It was Harden at the line again after that, and he made both shots before Smith made a triple at the buzzer. Griffin led the Pistons with 37 points and 11 rebounds Andre Drummond added 20 points with 11 rebounds for the Pistons. Detroit used a run to cut Houston's lead to six points with about six minutes left before the Rockets scored the next eight points, with six from Harden to make it 113-99 about a minute later. But Griffin made three three-pointers, with the first two on consecutive possessions, to fuel a 9-2 run that got Detroit within 115-108 with 3.5 minutes left. James Ennis made a three-pointer for Houston after that, but Griffin scored the next five points, with another three-pointer to cut the lead to 118-113 with about two minutes left. Harden added a basket on a goaltending call, but Griffin made yet another triple to make it 120-116 before his late errors. The Rockets scored the first seven points of the third quarter to make it make it 65-57. But Detroit scored the next eight points, with three's by Reggie Jackson and Langston Galloway to tie it a couple of minutes later. Houston went on another run after that, outscoring Detroit 9-2, to take a 76-67 lead midway through the quarter. Harden got the Rockets going in that span with a three-pointer and Clint Capela capped it with four straight points. The Rockets were up 81-73 later in the third when Tucker got hit by Griffin on a screen and began complaining to an official. He received a technical foul, but that didn't stop him from continuing to get in the officials' face and yell at him, drawing a second technical and an ejection. The Pistons made both free throws from the technical but the Rockets scored the next five points, with a triple from Gerald Green, to make it 86-75 with about four minutes left in the quarter. TIP-INS Pistons: Detroit made 16 three-pointers to give the team at least 10 in seven straight games, a franchise record. ... Luke Kennard missed his 11th game with a sprained right shoulder and coach Dwane Casey said that he hasn't been cleared for contact drills and will still be out for a while. Rockets: Capela received a technical foul in the third quarter for hanging on the rim after a dunk. ... Chris Paul added 20 points with seven assists. UP NEXT Pistons: Host Houston on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). Rockets: Visit Detroit on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 22nd, 2018

Detroit Pistons still unbeaten, send Cleveland Cavaliers to 0-5 start

DETROIT --- Andre Drummond had 26 points and 22 rebounds, and the Detroit Pistons remained unbeaten with a 110-103 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night. The Pistons are 4-0 for the first time since the 2008-09 season. Cleveland, which was without injured star Kevin Love, fell to 0-5 for the first time since 2003-04, when LeBron James was a rookie. Blake Griffin scored 26 points in his first game since a 50-point night against Philadelphia on Tuesday. Reggie Jackson added 16 points for the Pistons. Kyle Korver led Cleveland with 21 points. The Pistons scored the first six points of the game before the Cavaliers scored the next 11. Detroit went on a 12-0 r...Keep on reading: Detroit Pistons still unbeaten, send Cleveland Cavaliers to 0-5 start.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsOct 26th, 2018

Griffin, Smith lead Pistons over Bulls 118-116

By JOHN JACKSON,  Associated Press CHICAGO (AP) — Blake Griffin had 33 points and 12 rebounds, Ish Smith scored all 15 of his points in the second half, including the game-winning basket, and the Detroit Pistons beat the Bulls 118-116 on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time) in Chicago's home opener. Griffin was 12 for 23 from the field, including 5 of 7 on 3-pointers, as Detroit won its second straight to start the season. Zach LaVine had 33 points on 12-of-22 shooting for Chicago, which dropped its second consecutive game. The Bulls played without starters Kris Dunn (excused absence) and Lauri Markkanen (sprained right elbow), and reserve Denzel Valentine (left ankle). With the score tied at 116, Smith drove through the defense for a layup with 5.4 seconds left. Detroit had a 60-58 halftime lead despite shooting 34 percent in the first two quarters. Griffin had 16 points on 5-of-7 shooting. LaVine had 19 first-half points for Chicago. The Pistons led 85-84 entering the fourth before the Bulls scored four straight points. Smith put Detroit back on top 89-88 and the Pistons held a slim advantage until LaVine hit a 3-pointer with 24.6 seconds left. After Smith's basket, Chicago had a chance to tie or go ahead with a 3, but LaVine lost the ball — he was pressured by Griffin — as he rose for a 3-pointer. TIP-INS Pistons: F Reggie Bullock (illness) and F Stanley Johnson (toe) returned to the starting lineup after missing the opener against Brooklyn. Bullock finished with 16 points in 24 minutes, while Johnson had 10 points in 30 minutes. Bulls: Valentine will be out for at least another two weeks after a scan on Friday revealed a bone bruise in his left ankle. He'll be re-evaluated in two weeks. "It's not that bad," Valentine said. "My ankle's feeling better, so it's just time." . Dunn missed his second straight game following the birth of his first child. He is expected to rejoin the team Monday in Dallas. UP NEXT Pistons: Host the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday night. Bulls: At the Dallas Mavericks on Monday night......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 21st, 2018

Pistons hold off Nets in Casey’s debut

DETROIT --- Andre Drummond had 24 points and 20 rebounds, and the Detroit Pistons won their opener under new coach Dwane Casey, 103-100 over the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday night. Blake Griffin added 26 points for the Pistons, who were without two potential starters but still managed to hold off Brooklyn. Caris LeVert equaled a career high with 27 points for the Nets, and he drove to the basket in the final seconds with Brooklyn down one. LeVert lost the ball, and it went out of bounds to Detroit. Reggie Jackson made two free throws for the Pistons with 6.2 seconds remaining, and Joe Harris missed from near the top of the key at the other end. The Nets scored the game's first...Keep on reading: Pistons hold off Nets in Casey’s debut.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsOct 18th, 2018

Bogdanovic scores 19 points, Pacers rout Grizzlies 111-83

By Michael Marot, Associated Press INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Bojan Bogdanovic scored 19 points and Victor Oladipo added 16 to help the Indiana Pacers rout the Memphis Grizzlies 111-83 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). It was the largest-opening night victory margin in the franchise's NBA era, breaking the mark of 27 set against the then New Jersey Nets in 1985. Domantas Sabonis finished with 14 points and 15 rebounds as Indiana earned its seventh opening-night win eight years. The Pacers also have won eight of their last nine home openers. Marc Gasol scored 13 points and Garrett Temple had 12 — all on three-pointers — for the Grizzlies. It was Memphis' first season-opening loss in three years — and this one was never really close. Indiana took a 26-16 lead after one quarter, then used a 14-2 second-quarter run to make it 41-17. Memphis closed to 56-39 at the half and cut the deficit to 14 twice in the third quarter, but the Pacers fended off the finally charge with 9-3 run to rebuild a 73-53 lead. The Grizzlies never got closer than 18 the rest of the game on a night Indiana was 10-of-25 on three's and had 20 turnovers. TIP-INS Grizzlies: Mike Conley returned to his hometown and scored 11 points in his first regular-season appearance since mid-November. He missed 70 games last season with an injured left heel. ... Rookie Jaren Jackson Jr., who grew up in nearby Carmel, scored 10 points in his NBA debut. ... The game was J.B. Bickerstaff's first as a full-time head coach. He previously served as an interim coach with Houston in 2015-16 and last season with Memphis. ... Gasol appeared to hurt his right leg during the second quarter but returned before halftime and played throughout the second half. Pacers: Indiana has won three straight over the Grizzlies. ... Tyreke Evans had 14 points and six assists against his former team. Evans played last season in Memphis. ... The Pacers finished with a 57-28 rebounding advantage — recording their highest single-game total since 2003. ... Doug McDermott had 12 points, Cory Joseph finished with 11 and Thaddeus Young wound up with 10 points and eight rebounds. ... TJ Leaf, Indiana's first-round draft pick in 2017, left late in the first quarter with a sprained left ankle and did not return. UP NEXT Grizzlies: Will try to rebound in their home opener against Atlanta on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). Pacers: Make their first road trip of the season at Milwaukee on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 18th, 2018

Casey wins debut with Pistons, 103-100 over Nets

By Noah Trister, Associated Press DETROIT (AP) — Andre Drummond had 24 points and 20 rebounds, and the Detroit Pistons won their opener under new coach Dwane Casey, 103-100 over the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). Blake Griffin added 26 points for the Pistons, who were without two potential starters but still managed to hold off Brooklyn. Caris LeVert equaled a career-high with 27 points for the Nets, and he drove to the basket in the final seconds with Brooklyn down one. LeVert lost the ball, and it went out of bounds to Detroit. Reggie Jackson made two free throws for the Pistons with 6.2 seconds remaining, and Joe Harris missed from near the top of the key at the other end. The Nets scored the game's first eight points, and Brooklyn's Jarrett Allen made an impressive defensive play early when he blocked Griffin's dunk attempt. The Nets led by as many as 12 points in the first quarter, but it was tied at 51 at halftime. Detroit opened a 13-point lead in the third quarter, but Brooklyn rallied. The Pistons led 101-96 when Spencer Dinwiddie went to the line for the Nets. Dinwiddie made a free throw but missed the second. Brooklyn came up with the rebound, and Harris made a three-pointer to cut the deficit to one. Dinwiddie had 23 points. The Pistons were without Stanley Johnson (toe) and Reggie Bullock (illness). Brooklyn was not at full strength, either. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson was out because of a left adductor injury. TRIBUTE The Pistons honored Aretha Franklin before the game by playing a recording of her singing the national anthem. Former Pistons star Isiah Thomas spoke briefly, asking for a moment of silence for Franklin, who died in August. After the moment of silence, and with no additional announcement, a recording of Franklin singing the anthem at the 2004 NBA Finals began playing while pictures scrolled on the scoreboard screen. A microphone was left unattended at midcourt while the anthem played. TIP-INS Nets: Brooklyn was also without DeMarre Carroll (right ankle), Allen Crabbe (left ankle), Shabazz Napier (right hamstring) and Alan Williams (left ankle). Pistons: Jackson scored 19 points. UP NEXT Nets: Host New York on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time). Pistons: At Chicago on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 18th, 2018

No surprise, the West title still runs through the Warriors

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press Golden State coach Steve Kerr is a happy man these days. He’s got a new contract. He’s got his son Nick, who was helping out in San Antonio, working in the Warriors’ video room now. He’s leading a team that has won three of the last four NBA championships and is the overwhelming favorite to win it again this season. Staying happy will be the challenge for Kerr and the Warriors this season, when Western Conference rivals resume their attempts to take down the champs. “Our place in the history of the league is pretty secure,” Kerr said. “I don’t think our guys should feel a ton of pressure. I think they should feel the importance of trying to do it again, because this may be the last time we have this current iteration of the Warriors, just given all the free agents and the money crunch and everything else.” LeBron James took his talents to Los Angeles, signing with the Lakers and moving out of the East for the first time in his career. Houston had the NBA’s best regular-season record a year ago and has reigning MVP James Harden. Utah has a budding superstar in Donovan Mitchell, and certainly got the league’s attention with its playoff run last season. But in the West, until further notice, it’s still the Warriors and then everybody else. “It’s a marathon,” Warriors guard Stephen Curry said. “There’s a lot of time between now and April and May and June, but if we go about it the right way to start the season, it can feed on itself in terms of the expectation we have night in, night out.” A look at the West, in predicted order of finish: PLAYOFF BOUND 1. GOLDEN STATE — Warriors aiming for their third consecutive NBA championship, something only the Lakers, Celtics and Bulls franchises have done. 2. UTAH — Donovan Mitchell is a legitimate star, coach Quin Snyder has been underrated for far too long, and the Jazz went 29-6 to finish last season. 3. HOUSTON — The Rockets have the MVP in James Harden, a leader in Chris Paul and added Carmelo Anthony, but expecting another 67-15 season is a lot. 4. L.A. LAKERS — LeBron James is still the best player in the game and shows no signs of slowing down, so doubting his chances seems less than brilliant. 5. OKLAHOMA CITY — This is a sign of how loaded the West remains: The Thunder are really good, and that won’t assure them home-court for Round 1. 6. DENVER — Losing Game 82 last season to Minnesota and missing the playoffs because of that outcome should serve as a massive motivator for Denver. 7. NEW ORLEANS — DeMarcus Cousins is gone, Rajon Rondo is gone, but Anthony Davis is still there and that should be enough for a Pelicans playoff run. 8. SAN ANTONIO — Dejounte Murray’s ACL tear is a disaster, but any team with LaMarcus Aldridge, DeMar DeRozan and Gregg Popovich still has a lot. IN THE MIX 9. PORTLAND — The West’s No. 3 seed last season, the Blazers were only three games ahead of No. 9 and will face a serious battle in a very loaded West. 10. DALLAS — Luka Doncic is NBA-ready, DeAndre Jordan will make the Mavs better and Dirk Nowitzki deserves to see his franchise trending up again. 11. L.A. CLIPPERS — A possible transitional year for the Clippers, who should be major players in free agency next summer and could add a lottery pick. FACING LONG ODDS 12. MINNESOTA — The Jimmy Butler debacle shows that some big changes in direction are probably going to happen in Minnesota, and sooner than later. 13. PHOENIX — Devin Booker got his max deal and the Suns got No. 1 pick Deandre Ayton, but firing GM Ryan McDonough so close to the season was odd. 14. MEMPHIS — Mike Conley and Marc Gasol are savvy vets, but they are going to need a lot of help if Memphis is going to seriously improve this season. 15. SACRAMENTO — Kings had a league-high 44 games last season where they didn’t score 100 points, and a very young team might not change that much. WHAT TO KNOW L.A. BRON: If he has even an average-for-him season, new Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James will rise to No. 4 on the NBA’s all-time scoring list this season. He’s currently No. 7, with No. 6 Dirk Nowitzki, No. 5 Wilt Chamberlain and No. 4 Michael Jordan well within reach. Add 2,000 or so points to James’ total of 31,038, and only No. 3 Kobe Bryant, No. 2 Karl Malone and No. 1 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — all former Lakers — would still be ahead of him. STEPH RISING: Speaking of rising up career charts, Golden State’s Stephen Curry could easily be No. 3 on the all-time list for 3-pointers made by the end of this season. Curry has 2,129 3s in 625 career games, a rate of 3.4 made per game. The six players ahead of him — Ray Allen, Reggie Miller, Jason Terry, Kyle Korver, Jamal Crawford and Paul Pierce — averaged 1.8 made 3s per game. BIG NUMBERS: The only players in the last 30 seasons to average 30 points and eight assists were Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook in 2016-17 and Houston’s James Harden last season. Probably not coincidentally, Westbrook and Harden won MVP awards for those seasons. There are seven active players with at least one MVP award in the NBA right now, and all seven play in the West. GREAT COACHES: San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich enters the season with 1,197 wins, fifth-most in NBA history — 13 behind Pat Riley and 24 behind Jerry Sloan. Meanwhile, Golden State’s Steve Kerr comes into the year with the highest winning percentages during both the regular season (265-63, .808) and the postseason (63-20, .759) in NBA history. Here’s how far ahead Kerr is on the NBA’s all-time regular season winning percentage list: If the Warriors go 24-58 this season, which seems less than likely, he would still be above Phil Jackson for the No. 1 spot. VERSUS EAST: The West beat the East for the ninth consecutive season in head-to-head matchups, winning nearly 53 percent of the cross-conference matchups in the regular season (and 100 percent of them in the NBA Finals). Over the last nine seasons, West teams have beaten East teams nearly 57 percent of the time......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 11th, 2018