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Wolves halt Rockets’ 9-game winning run

Wolves halt Rockets’ 9-game winning run.....»»

Category: sportsSource: thestandard thestandardJan 12th, 2017

Defending champion Warriors get on roll with strong defense

By Janie McCauley, Associated Press OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Defense has been the theme from Day 1 for the Golden State Warriors, determined to do all the little things even better on both ends of the floor on the heels of their second NBA championship in three years. They’re blocking shots. Jumping into the passing lanes for timely steals. Getting hands in the faces of shooters. It wasn’t this way out of the gates this season, and coach Steve Kerr had some moments of frustration. Lately, he’s pleased with the progress and consistency. “Defensively we’ve just had longer stretches of high intensity and high level of focus,” Stephen Curry said. “That’s allowed us to control the momentum of games and the flow of games.” The Warriors outscored Minnesota 44-26 in the third quarter of Wednesday night’s (Thursday, PHL time) 125-101 win — and dominated without NBA Finals MVP Kevin Durant, who sat with a bruised left thigh but was expected to be fine by Saturday’s (Sunday, PHL time) home game against the 76ers. “I know if we focus on taking care of the basketball and playing solid defense, and focusing on that, and really, hopefully, regardless of how our offense is, we’ll be in a good position to win games,” Curry said. Golden State limited the Timberwolves to 41.3 percent from the floor and a dismal 5-of-24 on three-pointers on the way to winning its fifth straight. “You saw how beautiful that was in the second half with 37 assists overall. It’s all about taking care of the ball and defending,” Kerr said. “The defense part I’m really pleased with. I think this is about our fifth straight really good defensive effort we have had so that’s a great sign.” He gave his team a day off Thursday (Friday, PHL time) before getting back to work Friday (Saturday, PHL time) in preparation for Philadelphia. Other teams and opposing players notice the Warriors’ attention to detail on the defensive end, even if their high-flying offensive show is typically the focus of scouting reports and film sessions. “You can’t win without that,” Memphis center Marc Gasol said. “Even if you look at teams like Golden State, you see a team that obviously has a lot of firepower, their defense is really outstanding, how they all move together at the same time, how they all shift as a unit from one side to the other ... Then they give you 125 points, too. But they really do play a lot of great defense.” Against the T-Wolves, Golden State blocked nine shots — its 11th time in 12 games with at least seven swats — three by reserve Omri Casspi and another two from Draymond Green, and didn’t allow a 20-point performance by Minnesota. Nick Young came off the bench to make a career-high four steals in 20-plus minutes. “It’s finally coming along. We’re starting to put it together,” Green said. “We’re taking more ownership in one-on-one defense. We’ve just locked in more on one-on-one defense and taking on the challenge.” Part of that, according to player development coach Chris DeMarco, is “being the aggressors, being active defensively and trusting that the guys around us will help if we get beat.” While a handful of turnovers led to easy baskets by Minnesota, for the most part the Warriors were disciplined in their defensive assignments. It has been that way for a stretch of games now. It didn’t hurt Golden State shot 65.9 percent after halftime in pulling away from the overmatched Timberwolves, who were on a roll with five straight wins before the stop in Oakland. “I think you learn a lot from playing against them because that’s what a championship team looks like. They play hard. They play together. You look at their willingness to sacrifice for each other and make plays,” T-Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau said. “They had 37 assists on 48 baskets. Their defense over the last five games has been back to what their defense is. That’s why they’ve been able to win the way they’ve won. I think their willingness to sacrifice and play for each other is what makes them great. They take good shots. They make the game easy for each other. When you do that, the results will be good.” ___ AP Sports Writer Teresa M. Walker contributed to this report......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 10th, 2017

BLOGTABLE: Best young duo in the NBA right now?

NBA.com blogtable The scariest young duo (22 and under) in the NBA today: Joel Embiid/Ben Simmons, Jaylen Brown/Jayson Tatum, Nikola Jokic/Jamal Murray, or Karl-Anthony Towns/Andrew Wiggins? * * * David Aldridge: Embiid/Simmons in a photo over Towns/Wiggins. (Not a big enough sample size yet for Jayson Tatum for Brown/Tatum to be considered, and I don't think Jokic/Murray are there in the discussion yet.) We all know how Olajuwony Embiid can be at both ends when his dogs aren't barking, and Simmons has been as good as advertised so far--though at some point, soon, teams will see that he wants to get to the middle of the paint every time down the floor, right? And, y'know, try to keep him from doing that? But until they stop him, he's going to use every bit of that 6'10" to take that giant step that clears him to rise up and shoot or keep the dribble and power to the rim. But the reason I pick the Sixers' duo is that we've still yet to see Towns and Wiggins get more personally involved at the defensive end for the Wolves. They're both too athletic and smart not to impact games more defensively. Minnesota just shouldn't be 30th in the league in Defensive Rating. No excuse for that. Philly's not shutting down people by any means, but middle of the pack is better than DFL. Steve Aschburner: Give me the Philly phenoms, who have the potential to be the league’s two best players at the traditionally two most important positions. Embiid’s skills are established; it’s all about his durability. Simmons is looking like the most legit tall point guard since ... well, since the prototype, Earvin (Magic) Johnson. So if all four of our couples max out, the Sixers win. The Celtics’ pair, because of their role as forwards, is like having the best bishops in a game of chess. Denver’s guys don’t strike me as dominant, at their peak, as Embiid-Simmons can be, and Minnesota’s twosome needs to get serious about the defensive end before they win this showdown. Shaun Powell: I'll go with Embiid-Simmons with the understandable qualifier of "if they stay healthy." Embiid can be just as good if not better than Karl-Anthony Towns, while Simmons is massively multi-dimensional and this gives him the edge on the others. The next step for everyone listed is to forge a kinship with each other and develop an understanding that winning trumps all, more than money or ego or buzz. That's what all dynamic duos in NBA history had, with the exception of Shaq-Kobe at the bitter end. John Schuhmann: Embiid and Simmons have a combination of size and skill that's unmatched. Embiid is a seven footer who can do everything on the floor, while Simmons is a 6'10" point guard with incredible vision. They still have some developing to do, but so do the other combinations listed. Wiggins and Towns are in the conversation and more polished offensively, but in their fourth and third seasons, are worse defenders than the Simmons and Embiid, with their 44 games of experience between them. Sekou Smith: Embiid and Simmons are downright frightening when you factor in the size for their position, raw talent and injury history for both of these young superstars in training. Towns and Wiggins are a close second, while Jokic and Murray rank third on my list. As talented as all of these young duos are, I just can't fathom drawing up a better pair of barely of age basketball players than Embiid and Simmons. They are like the perfect puzzle pieces in the "trust the process" franchise-builder kit. Their versatility, ability to dominate inside and out (as well as in transition) coupled with their upside (I usually dread the word, but it fits here) means there's no telling where they go next. If their availability comes anywhere close to matching the rest of their respective talent profiles, Philly's jumbo crew could be the standard-bearing duo in the not-too-distant future for the Eastern Conference......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 2nd, 2017

10 things to know going into the 2017-18 NBA season

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press Happy New Year, NBA. The 72nd regular season starts Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time), when Boston heads to Cleveland and Houston goes to Golden State. Fans in Cleveland will boo Kyrie Irving, fans in Oakland will cheer the Warriors’ latest championship banner, and the march toward April will finally be underway. The offseason was loaded with changes. Carmelo Anthony and Paul George went to Oklahoma City, Gordon Hayward and Irving went to Boston, Isaiah Thomas got sent to Cleveland, Jimmy Butler is now in Minnesota and Paul Millsap calls Denver home. That’s seven All-Stars who moved, a record for an NBA offseason. Every coach who started last season will start this season. That’s an NBA first. Here’s 10 things to know about the NBA season that is finally here: ___ 10. QUICK STARTERS San Antonio, Toronto and Miami will likely start 1-0 — because under current management, San Antonio, Toronto and Miami almost always start 1-0. Spurs coach Gregg Popovich is 18-2 on opening night, Raptors coach Dwane Casey is 7-1 and Heat coach Erik Spoelstra is 7-2. Spoelstra has started 1-0 in each of the last six seasons, the longest such run in the NBA. A coach in need of a 1-0 start? Try New Orleans’ Alvin Gentry. He’s dropped five straight openers and is 2-9 on opening night. Brooklyn, Orlando, Milwaukee and Utah have the league’s longest current opening-night losing streaks, starting 0-1 in each of the last four seasons. 9. FROM DISTANCE Last season was the third straight where the NBA’s team single-season three-point record fell, starting with Houston (933 in 2014-15), Golden State (1,077 in 2015-16) and Houston again (1,181 from 2016-17). Between the Rockets, Cleveland, Boston and the Warriors, four of the five highest single-season three-point totals in history came last season. Don’t expect the 3-ball to go away anytime soon, either. 8. LEBRON’S MARKS LeBron James’ list of milestones is about to get longer. He comes into this season 1,213 points shy of becoming the seventh NBA player to reach 30,000, meaning it should happen by about the All-Star break barring any extended absence. He’s also on pace to eclipse the 8,000-rebound and 8,000-assist marks this season. The only other player in NBA history with 25,000 points, 6,000 rebounds and 6,000 assists is Kobe Bryant. James already has all those numbers, and counting. 7. WHERE’S THE DEFENSE? In 2014-15, half the league — 15 teams — held opponents under 100 points per game. Two seasons later, San Antonio and Utah were the only teams that managed the feat. The league’s planned crackdown on traveling this season might help, but it’ll be interesting to see if defensive numbers improve in this era of three-point-reliant, pace-and-space basketball. 6. MAYBE MINNESOTA Think about this, with apologies to fans in the Pacific Northwest: There have been more NBA playoff games in Seattle over the last 13 years than in Minneapolis. This will finally be the year that changes. The Timberwolves, who last reached the postseason in 2004, should return this spring even in a loaded Western Conference with Karl-Anthony Towns, Andrew Wiggins and new addition Jimmy Butler leading the way. 5. SPURS CHASE HISTORY If the Spurs win 41 games this season — a safe bet — it’ll be the 21st consecutive season where San Antonio finishes the regular season at .500 or better. That would tie the NBA mark in that department, matching the feat set by the Utah Jazz from 1983-84 to 2003-04. The Spurs set a record for consecutive winning seasons last year with their 20th. (Utah was 41-41 in 1984-85.) 4. DIRK’S LONGEVITY Dallas’ Dirk Nowitzki enters this season 31 games away from passing Kevin Willis for No. 6 on the NBA’s all-time list. At 48,673 minutes, he’s also within striking distance of No. 5 Elvin Hayes (50,000), No. 4 Jason Kidd (50,111) and No. 3 Kevin Garnett (50,418). 3. STEPH WATCH Stephen Curry will have just turned 30 when this regular season ends. And by then, he legitimately could be No. 3 on the NBA’s all-time three-point list. Curry starts this season No. 10, and at his current pace will pass Ray Allen for the top spot sometime in the 2019-2020 season. 2. NEW DEADLINE No longer will the All-Star Game be overshadowed by talk of who’s getting moved where (like last year, when DeMarcus Cousins was traded to the Pelicans while players were still in locker rooms in New Orleans immediately after the game). The trade deadline will now be 10 days before the All-Star break, so this season that means Feb. 8 (Feb. 9, PHL time). 1. AND THE WINNER IS ... How can anyone pick against Golden State right now? The Warriors will get their third title in four years, which is the easiest prediction possible. So we’ll finish this with some probably less-than-chalk picks: LeBron James is going to reclaim the MVP award, the Rockets will have a game where they connect 30 times from three-point range and Charlotte’s Steve Clifford will be coach of the year......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 17th, 2017

Thunder add reinforcements for MVP Westbrook

em>By Cliff Brunt, Associated Press /em> OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Russell Westbrook did it all last season and it wasn’t enough. Westbrook averaged a triple-double and topped Oscar Robertson’s single-season record for triple-doubles on his way to winning the league MVP award and the scoring title. He led the Thunder to the playoffs after Kevin Durant left for Golden State in the offseason. A five-game playoff exit at the hands of the Houston Rockets was typical of Oklahoma City’s season — great play from Westbrook but the team falling short. Reinforcements have arrived. The Thunder have acquired All-Stars Paul George and Carmelo Anthony in trades, and now, Oklahoma City is poised to return to elite status. “To be able to play with those two guys and the rest of the guys we have is amazing,” Westbrook said. “I’m excited. I’m looking forward to making a great run, and I’m happy they’re here.” Anthony, now 33, appears to have plenty in the tank. He averaged 15.8 points and 6.5 rebounds in the preseason. He said he expects to score, but he will do what is needed to fit in with coach Billy Donovan’s system. George led the Indiana Pacers to the Eastern Conference finals in 2013 and 2014. He missed most of the 2014-2015 season after breaking his leg, then the Pacers lost in the first round of the playoffs the next two seasons. His early adjustment appears to be going smoothly — he averaged 20.3 points in the preseason. He believes that being paired with superstar talent gives the Thunder a chance to be special. “You need guys of that stature and that level to be able to help and create something special,” George said. “It’s just that era where you’ve got to face teams that are going to have two or three guys that can take over games and be iconic to this league.” Here are some things to watch from the Thunder this season: strong>BACKUP POINT GUARD /strong>: The Thunder sometimes ran into trouble last season when Westbrook would go to the bench to rest, and it was a particularly big issue during the playoffs. New pickup Raymond Felton should be an upgrade. The veteran has 657 NBA starts and averaged 9.5 points per game just two seasons ago for Dallas. strong>ADAMS’ DEVELOPMENT /strong>: Center Steven Adams had his best season last year, and he will be in position to be even better this year. He ranked seventh in the league in field-goal percentage last season, and with George and Anthony drawing attention, he should be open a lot more this season. He shot 62 percent from the field during the preseason. strong>HIGH-FLYER: /strong> Rookie guard Terrance Ferguson played professionally in Australia last season. He showed off his springs on several highlight-reel plays while averaging 6.3 points in the preseason. There’s substance to go with the flash. “He’s a guy that comes in and works hard, does the things we ask him to do on both ends,” Anthony said. “Wants to get better. You can’t ask for a better rookie than that. A guy who wants to be out on the court and working his way to have an opportunity to gain some minutes. So he is a guy that you guys will be hearing more of in the future.” strong>THREE-POINT SHOOTING: /strong>Oklahoma City was the worst three-point shooting team in the league last season at 32.7 percent. The addition of George, Patrick Patterson and Anthony should help that. All are good shooters, and they should get plenty of open looks playing off of the other talent on the roster. strong>REPLACING ENES: /strong>The Thunder had to give up Enes Kanter to get Anthony. Kanter was one of the best reserves in the league — just two years ago, he finished third in the race for Sixth Man of the Year. He’s an elite offensive rebounder and one of the league’s most efficient shooters. “Enes was a great guy, he was a great teammate,” Donovan said. “He in my opinion is maybe the best offensive rebounder in the game. You know, I think he’ll be missed.” .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 12th, 2017

Camp time! Warriors, Wolves prepare to open training camp

em>By Jon Krawczysnki, Associated Press /em> The Golden State Warriors were the last team standing when the NBA season closed in June. Thanks to a preseason trip to China, they are one of the first teams to get going this season as the league gets up and rolling again. The Warriors and Minnesota Timberwolves will hold their media days on Friday and open training camps Saturday, a few days ahead of the rest of the league as they prepare for an early October trip to China for games in Shanghai and Shenzhen as part of the league’s ongoing efforts to grow the game in the basketball-crazy nation. Golden State will be the headliner in China, just like it has been in the NBA for the last three seasons. And the Warriors open camp this season with a major advantage over everyone else that goes above and beyond the sheer talent the organization has assembled with Kevin Durant, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. While the rest of the league spent the entire summer scrambling to upgrade in a desperate attempt to enter Golden State’s stratosphere, the Warriors return almost the entire roster from the team that won its second championship in three seasons. In fact, Golden State should only be better this year because it will not have to spend part of the early season figuring out how to incorporate Durant’s game with three other All-Stars. Meanwhile, teams like the Rockets, Cavaliers, Thunder, Timberwolves and Celtics will need all of the preseason and then some to get on the same page with the new stars in town. There will be no such orientation process in Golden State. Free agents Nick Young and Omri Casspi will have to acclimate, but that is a lot easier to do when Durant and Curry are showing them around. ___ So as media days and training camps get up and running, here are a few things to watch at the outset: strong>HARD FEELINGS? /strong> It appeared that Durant was on his way to mending some fences in Oklahoma City after he left the organization to join Golden State last season. But the fence posts may have been torn down again when Durant disparaged the Thunder team and coach Billy Donovan as the biggest reasons he left to join the Warriors. Durant has since apologized , but the topic will likely come up again when he speaks to the media on Friday. And it should be interesting to see if Russell Westbrook has anything to say about it when the Thunder open early next week. strong>CP3 ARRIVES: /strong>The most intriguing roster experiment this year may be in Houston, where GM Daryl Morey is teaming James Harden with Chris Paul in a star-studded backcourt. Harden finished second in the MVP voting last season after moving from shooting guard to point guard and now will have to move back to accommodate Paul. Both players are used to having the ball in their hands and orchestrating the offense, so there will likely be some feeling-out that needs to be done in camp. The two have already appeared in a television commercial together, so they’re off to a running start. strong>KYRIE’S MOVE: /strong>The biggest headline in a wild offseason was Kyrie Irving’s request for a trade from the Cavaliers. He landed in Boston in a move that could define his legacy, the All-Star who didn’t want to play with LeBron James. Irving did little to shed light on his motives in an enigmatic interview with ESPN and likely will be bombarded with questions about it at media day. How the Celtics handle the early crush of attention and move past Irving’s exit from Cleveland could play a big role in their ability to truly challenge the Cavs in the Eastern Conference. strong>CRASH COURSE: /strong>The Timberwolves are one of the teams that made significant roster changes this summer after a disappointing 31-win season in Tom Thibodeau’s first year as coach. They added Jimmy Butler, Jeff Teague, Taj Gibson and Jamal Crawford while trading away Ricky Rubio in an offseason overhaul aimed at ending the league’s longest active playoff drought at 13 seasons. Thibodeau asked owner Glen Taylor to allow the team to hold training camp in San Diego before they head out to China to get them away from the distractions of home and allow them to bond in a preseason that only includes three games. That Butler and Gibson played for Thibodeau with the Bulls should help that transition, but it will no doubt be a process worth watching. strong>RULES CHANGES: /strong>When players start taking the court for exhibition games, it will offer an opportunity for them to start to adjust to rules changes and points of emphasis that are new every season. One notable difference this year will be the “James Harden rule,” a change in the way the game is called aimed at reducing the number of instances a player tricks a defender into fouling them and then goes into a shooting motion to try to earn free throw attempts. Harden is the master , though dozens of players do the same thing. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 23rd, 2017

Roethlisberger throws 4 TDs, Steelers drill Titans 40-17

By Will Graves, Associated Press PITTSBURGH (AP) — Ben Roethlisberger threw for 299 yards and four touchdowns, three to Antonio Brown, and the Pittsburgh Steelers pulled away from the Tennessee Titans in a 40-17 victory on Thursday night. Running the no-huddle offense extensively for the first time all season, Roethlisberger completed 30 of 45 passes to help the Steelers (8-2) win their fifth straight. Brown caught 10 passes for 144 yards and the three scores, including an acrobatic grab in the back of the end zone in which he pinned the ball to his helmet before bringing it in to put Pittsburgh up 20 in the fourth quarter. Marcus Mariota ran for a touchdown and threw for another but also was picked off four times as the Titans (6-4) saw their four-game winning streak come to a crashing halt. Mariota finished 22 of 33 for 306 yards but was under pressure much of the night, absorbing five sacks and rarely finding room to move outside the pocket. Still, Tennessee appeared to be in it when Mariota hit Rishard Matthews with a 75-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the second half to get to 16-14 but Pittsburgh's long-sputtering offense finally came to life. Roethlisberger dropped some very not subtle hints that he wanted the freedom provided by the no-huddle after the Steelers used it to pick the Colts apart during the winning drive last Sunday in Indianapolis. Offensive coordinator Todd Haley appeared to be listening. Pittsburgh opened in the no huddle and needed just six plays to take the lead as Roethlisberger took advantage of a free play and hit Brown with a 41-yard rainbow. Mike Hilton then returned Mariota's interception to set up the first of Chris Boswell's four field goals and the Steelers appeared on the verge of another prime-time blowout at home. The blowout did eventually arrive, just not quickly. The offense ground to a halt for the rest of the half, held in check by former defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau. The Hall of Famer spent 12 years building a defense that helped Pittsburgh to a pair of Super Bowl victories before being ushered out in favor of protege Keith Butler in January, 2015. The 80-year-old is in the middle of his latest project with the steadily improving Titans. Yet the gap between Tennessee and Pittsburgh remains significant. The proof came after Mathews' long catch-and-run appeared to give the Titans momentum. It didn't last. The Steelers, with Roethlisberger deftly at the controls, finally showcased the firepower they've only flirted with this season. The 35-year-old who has struggled with his accuracy at times was near perfect over the final 30 minutes. He finished 20 of 23 for 185 yards in the second half as Pittsburgh's $92-million offense sprang to life but scoring on four straight possessions. Roethlisberger found a leaping Brown for a 5-yard score to put Pittsburgh up 23-14, executed a perfect play-action fake that the goal line before flipping it to a wide-open Jesse James for a 1-yard touchdown and put the Titans away with a lob to the back corner of the end zone that Brown somehow hauled in from 10 yards out that made it 37-17. Pittsburgh rookie JuJu Smith-Schuster knelt down and bowed to Brown during the giddy celebration. Hard to blame the 20-year-old. For the first time all season, the Steelers put it all together and looked every bit like a team with a legitimate threat to play deep into January and beyond. UP NEXT Titans: Visit Indianapolis on Nov. 26. Tennessee beat the Colts 36-22 on Oct. 16. Steelers: Welcome the Green Bay Packers on Nov. 26, the second of four straight prime-time games for Pittsburgh......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 17th, 2017

Mourning Jaylen Brown sparks Celtics win over Warriors

By Matt Petersen, NBA.com Less than five minutes into Thursday night's (Friday, PHL time) clash of best vs. best, the Warriors were already threatening to pull away. They led the Celtics 15-6 after a pair of Kevin Durant free throws, and appeared to have already solved the formula Boston had used to fuel a 13-game winning streak. As they often do when the offense grinds to a halt, the Celtics turned to a reliable half-court play to settle in. It worked, producing a wide-open Jaylen Brown cutting down the baseline. The second-year forward could have laid it in quickly and efficiently. He didn't. Instead he opted for a quick spin and vicious jam, with a little flourish for good measure. It was a small choice, made in the split-second it took for the play to transpire. It also set a tone, one that allowed the Celtics to survive its worst offensive night of the season against the best team in the NBA. Brown steals, Brown slams! #SunLifeDunk4Diabetes pic.twitter.com/wvzDggz4RZ — Boston Celtics (@celtics) November 17, 2017 Later in the first quarter, Brown did what few are good (or brave) enough to do: he pressured two-time MVP Stephen Curry into coughing up a loose ball. Just as rare, he pursued and won the possession in the kind of frenetic setting the Warriors usually feast. Brown got around Curry, controlled the ball before Zaza Pachulia could reach it, and sprinted down the other end for a tomahawk jam. Another scene from the first quarter: Brown briefly lost Durant through a maze of screens, and the reigning Finals MVP rose for the mid-range shot he normally converts without thought. He didn't count on 1) Brown not giving up on the play and 2) having the audacity to block his shot. And that's the way it went for the rest of the night. Whenever Kyrie Irving's 4-for-16 night seemed to doom them, whenever it felt Jayson Tatum's quiet showing (2-for-5 FG) would leave Boston wanting, Brown did something to spark them. It turns out the 21-year-old wasn't just fighting the odds of scoreboard or opponent. Brown was also waging a battle with his heart, which was sorely tempted to mourn alone the loss of his best friend, who passed away on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). "I knew coming into today that he would have wanted me to play," a quietly emotional Brown said after the game. "After talking to his mom and family, they inspired me to come out and play. I wasn't in any shape to come out. I wanted to be in my room." Emotional Jaylen Brown on playing after the loss of a friend. pic.twitter.com/wTooFBfKRE — Chris Forsberg (@ESPNForsberg) November 17, 2017 Instead, Brown leaned on the escape of the game and the support of his teammates, rewarding both with one of the best performances of his young career. He finished with a team-high 22 points, seven rebounds, two blocks and two steals in 34 minutes of action. The effort was instrumental in extending Boston's win streak to a league-best 14 games while also halting the Warriors' own seven-game streak of dominance. All of that was, of course, a footnote to the individual more focused on personal loss than the results of a game. Brown remembered clearly when his friend, Trevin Steede, reached out to him when he was a new transfer in high school, too introverted to make new friends. "He walked up to me the third or fourth day and asked who I was sitting with [at lunch], even though I wasn't sitting with anybody," Brown recalled with a slight break in his voice. "He told me to come over and sit with him." After helping his team clinch its biggest victory yet, Brown let the knowledge that Steede was no longer there to sit with wash over him. Like that not-so-long ago day in high school, however, someone was there to reach out to him. It was Irving, embracing him after the final buzzer sounded, letting him know that others were there to fill the hole left in his life. "I've lost individuals in my life. It's never a good thing when someone else is going through it," Irving said afterward, via MassLife.com. "You do your best to console and to encourage them, but at the end of the day, it's about the strength within themselves and he showed a lot of that tonight, to be able to go out there and perform the way he did, I knew exactly where the game ball was going to." Facing a 17-point deficit, the defending champions, and the loss of a friend, there is no doubt that Brown earned it. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 17th, 2017

For Robert Bolick, championship starts and ends with mom

Heading into Game 2 of the Finals, with San Beda College needing one more win for back-to-back championships, Robert Bolick did not get a good night’s sleep. “Hindi ako makatulog kagabi,” he told reporters as the Red Lions still found themselves down 1-2 in the season series against Lyceum of the Philippines University. Good thing then that the 23-year-old had his lifelong comfort zone there with him. “Dasal lang ako nang dasal. Katabi ko nanay ko, dasal lang kami nang dasal,” he said. Apparently, the prayers worked as he scored seven points in the last five minutes to lead the defending champions in blanking the Pirates in the championship round. In the end, he had 18 points, six assists, and five rebounds and was one of the major reasons in the Mendiola-based squad’s 10th title in the last 12 years – and 21st overall. “Kapag nanonood si mom, talagang ibibigay mo ang best mo,” he said afterward. Not long after, Bolick was celebrating with the very same person who gave birth to him. “I just want to thank my mom. Simula sa pagiging bench player ko, she buys me shoes kahit wala kaming pera, she buys me gatas para mainom ko,” he shared, in front of the crowd at the Araneta Coliseum and for everybody watching. Through those words, the Ormoc, Leyte native was clutching his mom at his side. To top it all off, he had one more message for Zeny Bolick. “I love her to death,” he expressed. And so, Robert Bolick’s championship-winning Thursday essentially began with his mom by his side. And soon enough, Robert Bolick’s championship-winning Thursday essentially ended with his mom by his side. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 16th, 2017

Middleton scores 27, Bucks block 16 shots, top Pistons 99-95

By Dave Boehler, Associated Press MILWAUKEE (AP) — Khris Middleton scored 27 points, Giannis Antetokounmpo added 21 and the Milwaukee Bucks beat the Detroit Pistons 99-95 on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time) for their fourth straight victory. Milwaukee blocked 16 shots, two shy of the team record set in 1980 at Detroit. Recently acquired Eric Bledsoe had 12 points, all in the second half, to help the Bucks halt Detroit's five-game winning streak. Milwaukee had lost four in a row before starting its win streak. The Pistons, who began an 11-game stretch with nine on the road, were led by Avery Bradley's 28 points and five assists. Detroit, which fell to 3-3 away from home, also got 13 points and 17 rebounds from Andre Drummond. Bledsoe, who missed his first six shots, drilled one from the right wing for a 95-93 lead with 42 seconds to go. Bradley turned the ball over in the right corner after he was double-teamed, and Milwaukee made it 97-93 thanks to two free throws from Bledsoe with 16 seconds remaining. Bradley's basket pulled Detroit to 97-95, but the Bucks regained their four-point advantage on two free throws from Tony Snell with 10 seconds left. Detroit called timeout, only to see Anthony Tolliver commit another turnover on the inbounds play in front of Milwaukee's bench. The Pistons trailed by 15 midway through the third quarter but scored 11 of the first 13 points to open the fourth, including nine in a row from Langston Galloway after he failed to score in the first three periods. A three-pointer by Luke Kennard tied the score at 84 with 4:36 left. The game was tied 41-all at halftime after Detroit went on a 12-0 run midway through the second quarter. Milwaukee shot 13-of-18 in the third to take a 75-62 lead with 12 minutes left. TIP-INS Pistons: F Stanley Johnson returned after missing the previous three games with a right hip flexor strain but had just two points on two shots in 18 minutes. ... Detroit allowed only four points in the first 7:16 of the second quarter. Bucks: Point guard Matthew Dellavedova missed his first game of the season because of left knee tendinitis, and forward Mirza Teletovic has not played in the last four games due to a sore left knee. UP NEXT Pistons: Visit the Indiana Pacers on Friday (Saturday, PHL time) after beating them 114-97 last Wednesday (last Thursday, PHL time). Bucks: At the Dallas Mavericks on Friday (Saturday, PHL time). Milwaukee has lost eight of its last nine games against the Mavericks......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 16th, 2017

The Pistons are 10-3, and might be the surprise of the NBA

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press The Detroit Pistons are heading on the road for a few days, so maybe someone will see them play. They’ve certainly been worth watching. Detroit’s 10-3 start, good for No. 2 in the Eastern Conference standings, is one of the biggest good surprises in the NBA through the season’s first month. The Pistons already have a road win at Golden State, swept a five-game homestand — possibly to the delight of all those unoccupied red seats at Little Caesars Arena, more on that in a moment — and are off to their best start in 12 years. “I know that we’re playing as a team right now,” Detroit’s Luke Kennard said. “We’re really locked in. We’re really playing together and we play hard. When you have a team that does that together, you win.” Now comes the test. Starting Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time), the Pistons play five of their next six games on the road — visiting Milwaukee, Indiana and Minnesota before returning home to face Cleveland, then heading right back out for a trip to Oklahoma City and Boston. After topping Miami to finish off a 5-0 homestand Sunday (Monday, PHL time), Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy made no effort to hide how pleased he is right now. “We did a great job here, and now you just move on to the next challenge,” Van Gundy said. “Now 9-of-11 on the road, the next three games on the road against teams you beat at home so you know they want back at you. The challenges just keep mounting, but you put wins in the bank.” Maybe at some point, there will be fans in the seats. The brand-new Detroit arena has a listed capacity for basketball at 20,491, which was the announced crowd for opening night. In seven games since, the Pistons have announced crowds between 13,709 and 17,683 — and those numbers may be generous, given how empty the building looks on television. Officially, Detroit sold 76 percent of its tickets in those seven games. ___ GIANNIS WATCH Technically, no foreign player has ever won an NBA scoring title. Dominique Wilkins has one and he was born in Paris, but only because his father was in the U.S. Air Force. Giannis Antetokounmpo may change that in a few months. And if not this season, then probably soon enough. The Milwaukee star who hails from Greece went into this week averaging just over 31 points per game and leading the league in that department. He was the Most Improved Player last season and don’t be surprised if he gets more votes for that trophy this season — along with MVP ballots as well. “He plays now to destroy you,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters last week before Antetokounmpo scored 28 in Milwaukee’s road win over San Antonio. “In the beginning he was pretty darn good and he would do this and he would do that. But now he knows he can do it to you every time. He’s for real.” Antetokounmpo turns 23 on Dec. 6. The only other players in the last 50 years with 5,000 points, 2,000 rebounds and 1,000 assists before celebrating their 23rd birthdays — Hall of Famer Tracy McGrady, and future Hall of Famer LeBron James. ___ ANNIVERSARIES A couple of significant milestone dates are nearing. Sunday (Monday, PHL time) marks the 13th anniversary since the so-called “Malice at The Palace,” the infamous brawl involving Indiana and Detroit after Metta World Peace (then Ron Artest) went into the stands after a fan hit him with a drink. The aftermath included nine players being suspended, and security in NBA arenas has been different ever since. And Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time) is the 16th anniversary of the first call-up from what is now called the NBA G League — the Denver Nuggets brought eventual NBA champion Chris Andersen up from the Fayetteville Patriots, a move that paved the way for hundreds of players to truly view the development league as a springboard to the NBA. ___ THE WEEK AHEAD Some games to keep an eye on over the coming days: — Philadelphia at L.A. Lakers, Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time): Ben Simmons and Lonzo Ball, a matchup of future NBA assist leaders. — Golden State at Boston, Thursday (Friday, PHL time): An NBA Finals preview? The road team has won five straight in this series. — Oklahoma City at San Antonio, Friday (Saturday, PHL time): Russell Westbrook has triple-doubles in his last two games vs. the Spurs. — Houston at Memphis, Saturday (Sunday, PHL time): The Rockets’ wide-open offense goes up against the Grizzlies’ airtight defense. — Washington at Toronto, Sunday: John Wall vs. Kyle Lowry might get overlooked on an NFL Sunday, but shouldn’t. ___ STAT LINE OF THE WEEK Paul George, Oklahoma City: His 37-point, eight-rebound, five-assist game against Dallas on Sunday (Monday, PHL time) wasn’t even his best game of the week (he had 42, 9 and 7 two nights earlier against the Clippers). But the Sunday (Monday, PHL time) game gets the nod since it came on Russell Westbrook’s birthday and when asked what he got his teammate, George said “I got him 37.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 15th, 2017

Petron puts a blemish on Foton, wins back-to-back

Games Thursday: (Filoil Flying V Centre) 4:15 p.m. – Cocolife vs Iriga City 7:00 p.m. – Generika-Ayala vs F2 Logistics   Petron outgunned erstwhile unbeaten archrival defending champion Foton, 25-21, 25-22, 12-25, 25-20, Tuesday in the 2017 Chooks to-Go-Philippine Superliga (PSL) Grand Prix at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan. American import Lindsay Stalzer did most of the damage for the Blaze Spikers as she led Petron to its second straight win against her former team in a rematch of last year’s Finals. Stalzer hammered 20 attacks in her 23-point outing while reinforcement Hilary Hurley scored 20 points with 15 coming off kills including the match-clinching crosscourt spike to end the one-hour, 55-minute encounter. Petron improved to 5-1 win-loss record while handing the Tornadoes their first loss after a four-game winning streak.        “Sobra naming inaral ito, honestly speaking, yun naman kasi ang kailangan and lahat naman ng kalaban namin grabe din namin inaaral,” said Blaze Spikers coach Shaq delos Santos. Petron cruised in the first two sets but were pummeled by Foton led by Serbian import Sara Klisura in the third before staving off the Tornadoes’ repeated comeback attempt in the fourth frame.  “Even though natalo kami ng third set, naging challenge parin para sa amin,” said Delos Santos. “Sabi ko nga sa kanila, kalimutan niyo na yung third set. Ang kailangang nasa mind natin ay kung ano ang ginawa natin sa first two sets, which is all-out (yung laro).” Petron built a 20-11 cushion only to see the Foton with Klisura and Jaja Santiago spark a rally to close in 23-19. But a miss communication by the Tornadoes on their reception put Petron at match point in the next play. Stalzer overcooked her serve but Hurley sealed the deal with his crosscourt winner. Klisura had 29 points while Santiago added 11 markers for the Tornadoes. Montenegrin reinforcement Dragana Perunicic had a quiet night with only six points.     ---    Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 14th, 2017

In-game and post-game, it had to be everybody for UP

The University of the Philippines closed its campaign in the UAAP 80 Men’s Basketball Tournament with an emphatic 106-81 win against National University. Paul Desiderio was, hands down, the first and foremost reason why with 30 points, seven rebounds, and three assists. The Gomez de Liano brothers also played their part as Juan had 22 points, 13 rebounds, and four assists while Javi had a 17-point, 10-rebound double-double of his own. In the post-game conference, however, it wasn’t just those three who were with head coach Bo Perasol.   No best player for UP today. Coach Bo brings almost everybody with him to the post-win conference. #UAAPSeason80 pic.twitter.com/Zy6gfXl4Wk — Normie Riego (@riegogogo) Nobyembre 11, 2017   Traditionally, the winning team’s head coach along with two to three of the top performers in the game are the ones who enter the press room and sit in front of the media. In this one, however, it was Andrew Harris who came in with Perasol and was followed by Desiderio and Jun Manzo. Paolo Romero and Rob Ricafort then followed suit with the GDLs bringing up the rear. And so, up until the post-win interview, the Fighting Maroons’ total team effort was on display. Of course, Harris, Romero, and Ricafort themselves contributed to the emphatic win with two points each. In their last assignment of the season, State U finally heeded their head coach’s call. “Alam nila na buhay ng team si Paul, but we can’t just depend on him. It has to be everybody,” he said then. Parasol also said another time, “We cannot just rely on Paul or Jun because every time they’re going to have a bad game then we’re going to have a bad game too. What we need is contributions from them and then little contributions from the others.” The always amiable mentor went on to say that things will only get better for UP. While Harris, Romero, and Ricafort will no longer be there to see that, filling the void they will be leaving behind are several big-time transferees – Nigerian powerhouse Bright Akhuetie, Filipino-Canadian Evyn Santiago, and skilled slasher Jaydee Tungcab. And rest assured that even now, they are already well-aware that it has to be everybody – from the game itself to the post-game conference. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 11th, 2017

Wall’s 23, Beal’s 22 help Wiz beat Lonzo Ball, Lakers 111-95

By Howard Fendrich, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — John Wall’s Wizards managed to make a double-digit edge hold up against the Lakers this time, with the All-Star point guard scoring 23 points and Bradley Beal 22 as Washington beat Los Angeles and cold-shooting Lonzo Ball 111-95 on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time). Ball had 10 points, eight rebounds and eight assists. But the No. 2 overall draft pick out of UCLA came in making just 29.5 percent of his field-goal attempts for the Lakers and he was worse against the Wizards, going 3-for-12 — 25 percent. Washington’s Otto Porter Jr. finished with 20 points and 11 rebounds, while Markieff Morris scored 16 points on 6-of-7 shooting, including a pair of three's to open the third quarter. Coming off a home loss in which they never held a lead against the NBA-worst Dallas Mavericks, the Wizards went up by as many as 21 against the Lakers, at 91-70 on Porter’s turnaround fadeaway jumper with about 75 seconds remaining in the third quarter. The Lakers pulled to 93-84 on Julius Randle’s two-handed slam with about 8 minutes left in the game. But a triple by Beal soon built the hosts’ advantage back up to 15 and the outcome was never in doubt the rest of the way. That’s not always been the case for Washington this season, when its defense has seemed to be optional at times. But Washington held the Lakers to 36 percent Thursday (Friday, PHL time). When these teams played each other in Los Angeles last month in the fourth game of the season for each, the Wizards led by 10 points entering the fourth quarter before the Lakers wound up winning 102-99 in overtime. There was plenty of Wall vs. Ball hype leading into that one — initially fueled, not surprisingly, by Ball’s father, LaVar — although their matchup never become the game’s focus. TIP-INS Lakers: Seven players scored at least 10 points apiece, including Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Jordan Clarkson, Julius Randle and Brook Lopez. ... Came in averaging an NBA-high 56 points in the paint and 16 of their first 20 points came that way Thursday (Friday, PHL time). L.A. finished with 48. Wizards: Wall had eight rebounds, four assists, three blocks and two steals. ... Centers Marcin Gortat and Ian Mahinmi combined for 10 points and 11 personal fouls in 44 minutes. UP NEXT Lakers: At the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time) for the third stop in a four-game trip. Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo is the NBA’s leading scorer at 31.9 ppg. Wizards: Host the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time). The Hawks’ 2-9 record is the worst in the Eastern Conference......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 10th, 2017

Harden’s triple-double leads Rockets over Cavs 117-113

By Kristie Rieken, Associated Press HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden had a triple-double of 35 points, 11 rebounds and 13 assists to help the Houston Rockets beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 117-113 on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time). Harden also had five steals and a block as Houston extended its winning streak to four games. LeBron James had 33 points for the Cavaliers, and Jeff Green added 27. Houston led by seven after a layup by James with about 10 minutes left. The Rockets scored the next six points, capped by a three-pointer by P.J. Tucker to make it 111-98. The Cavaliers used a 13-1 run, with five points from James, to cut the lead to 112-111 with 90 seconds left. Harden missed a layup after that, but grabbed a rebound and threw an alley-oop to Clint Capela, who finished for Houston’s first basket since Tucker’s three. He was fouled on the play and made the free throw to make it 115-11 with just over a minute remaining. James made a layup on the other end, but Capela made another basket after a grabbing the rebound on a miss by Harden to put Houston back up by four with 10.7 seconds left. Capela, who finished with 19 points, 13 rebounds and four blocks, blocked a shot by James in the final seconds to secure the win. Harden has scored 30 or more points in three of the last four games, highlighted by a 56-point performance in a win over the Jazz on Sunday (Monday, PHL time). It’s the second triple-double of the season for Harden and the 33rd of his career. The Rockets made the first seven points of the second half thanks to a three-pointer by Eric Gordon and a four-point play by Trevor Ariza to take a 72-67 lead. Cleveland got going soon after that and a layup by Iman Shumpert got the Cavaliers within 1 point soon after that. But Harden made two three-pointers to power an 8-2 run that extended Houston’s lead to 81-74 lead with about 7.5 minutes left in the quarter. The Cavaliers scored five quick points, capped by a three-pointer by Green, to tie it at 87-87 about three minutes later. A three-point play by Gordon put Houston back on top and the Rockets had extended their lead to 100-93 entering the fourth quarter. The Rockets led by as many as 18 in the first half, but the Cavaliers made a big run in the second quarter to take the lead. Harden made a pair of free throws in the final seconds of the half cut Cleveland’s lead to 67-65 at halftime. TIP-INS Cavaliers: G Derrick Rose sat out because of soreness in his left ankle. Rose missed four straight games after spraining his ankle on Oct. 20 (Oct. 21, PHL time) before returning to play the last two. But the ankle was still bothering him, forcing him to sit out again on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time). ... Shumpert started in his place and finished with seven points. ... Love had 17 points before fouling out in the fourth quarter. Rockets: F Luc Mbah a Moute missed because of a bruised left knee. ... Gordon added 20 points. ... Harden made 13-of-14 free throws. UP NEXT Cavaliers: At Dallas on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time). Rockets: Host Memphis on Saturday night (Sunday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 10th, 2017

Saric scores 25 as 76ers beat Jazz 104-97 for 5th straight

By Kareem Copeland, Associated Press SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Dario Saric scored a season-high 25 points and the Philadelphia 76ers won their fifth straight game with a 104-97 victory over the Utah Jazz on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time). The winning streak is the Sixers’ longest since the 2011-12 season. Philadelphia used a 21-7 run to start the third quarter, highlighted by eight straight points from J.J. Redick, to take a 67-51 lead it never relinquished. The Sixers seemed to have more energy on both ends of the floor despite being on the road without starting center Joel Embiid. Ben Simmons initiated the offense while Saric and Redick knocked down shots. Saric grabbed 10 rebounds, Redick scored 20 points and Simmons finished with 16 points, 13 rebounds and six assists as the former No. 1 draft pick had his seventh double-double of the season. Robert Covington added 14 points and 12 rebounds. The Jazz didn’t do anything particularly well outside of a second-quarter rally after falling behind by 16 in the first 12 minutes. The defense allowed wide-open shots by the 76ers and was uncharacteristically sloppy throughout, giving up backdoor cuts and slashes to the basket for easy points. On the other end, the Jazz couldn’t connect on their own good looks. Rodney Hood led Utah with 19 points on 4-for-16 shooting, and Rudy Gobert posted his seventh double-double of the season with 16 points and 15 rebounds. TIP-INS 76ers: Richaun Holmes started in place of Embiid. ... Jerryd Bayless was out due to a bruised left wrist. Jazz: Donovan Mitchell started the second half over Hood. ... Utah shot 30.3 percent from the floor and 23.1 percent from three-point range. TRUST THE PROCESS Embiid did not travel with the 76ers and was given a scheduled rest as the team closely watches his return from injury. Philadelphia coach Brett Brown said the “sports science people” have a sophisticated plan put together. Embiid will join the team before it plays the Sacramento Kings on Thursday (Friday, PHL time). REDSHIRT FRESHMAN Top draft pick Markelle Fultz is traveling with the 76ers despite being out with a shoulder injury. Brown said there’s plenty to learn by being around the team. “None of us can dismiss the benefit that Ben Simmons had of effectively being a redshirt and taking it all in, not necessarily in real time,” Brown said. “The NBA is so unforgiving. ... All this time off I’m not looking at as negative. I’ve learned with all the players — Nerlens [Noel], Jahlil [Okafor], Joel and Ben and now Markelle — you can make it work. It’s Jon Gruden’s quarterback camp. ... Bring them in and talk video stuff and what do you see? Still make him feel a part of us and educate him. Although it’s not in a uniform, it still counts for something.” UP NEXT 76ers: At the Sacramento Kings on Thursday (Friday, PHL time). Jazz: Host the Miami Heat on Friday (Saturday, PHL time).  .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 8th, 2017

Seriously, where would LSGH be without Joel Cagulangan?

College of St. Benilde-La Salle Greenhills is back in the Finals of the NCAA Juniors Basketball Tournament. For the first time in four years, the Junior Blazers will have a chance at winning their very first championship. For Inand Fornilos, who posted 16-point, 18-rebound double-double in their conquest of dynastic San Beda High School, Joel Cagulangan was the difference between the two teams – and the difference for the boys from Greenhills throughout the tournament. “Kung wala siya, ewan na lang kung saan kami ngayon. Isa talaga siya sa puso ng team,” he said He then continued, “Pag wala siya, parang magiging imposible. Pag nandun siya, kayang-kaya.” And it wasn’t the first time the five-foot-eight point guard has played big. In the eliminations, he has won for them three games by his lonesome. In Game 1 of the semifinals, against the Red Cubs no less, he had 27 points, six rebounds, and five assists as CSB-LSGH. “Last game, parang natulala na nga lang kami e,” Evan Nelle, his backcourt counterpart, said. Cagulangan was at it again in Game 2, dropping 29 points to go alog with nine assists, nine rebounds, and two steals. “Ang galing, grabe. Ang hirap i-stop. Game plan namin, siya lang din, pero ang galing e,” Nelle said. He then continued, “Contested naman lahat ng shots niya, pero sumu-shoot pa rin.” This, all while playing 52 of the 55 possible minutes in the triple-overtime classic. And for the Junior Blazers’ head coach, this was just the start for their main man. As he put it, “He’s just getting better and better. We haven’t seen the best of him yet.” —- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 7th, 2017

Irving, Celtics hold off Hawks in closing minutes

By George Henry, Associated Press ATLANTA (AP) — Kyrie Irving scored 35 points, Jayson Tatum added 21 and the Boston Celtics held off the Atlanta Hawks 110-107 Monday night (Tuesday, PHL time) for their ninth straight victory. Irving’s triple from the right wing put the Celtics up 104-103 — the game’s 25th lead change — with 1:37 remaining, and Boston led the rest of the way. Dennis Schroder had 23 points for the rebuilding Hawks, who dropped to 2-9 a night after a surprising two-point win at Cleveland. Boston improved to 9-2, best in the NBA, and has its longest winning streak in seven years. Al Horford had 15 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists in his best game against the Hawks. Horford spent his first nine seasons in Atlanta before leaving as a free agent ahead of last season and had totals of 20 points and 17 rebounds in three games against the Hawks. Irving had his first 30-point game as a Celtic on a night packed with highlights. He dribbled between his legs and behind his back before hitting a floater off the glass from the left baseline to put Boston up 46-44. He had two impressive assists late in the third with long, one-handed passes that led to 3s by Marcus Smart and Tatum, the latter giving Boston a 72-71 lead. And Irving fed Horford for a dunk that was part of a 13-0 run that put the Celtics up by six. Boston coach Brad Stevens wasn’t pleased with the ball movement or defense early in the third, storming the floor to call timeout after Atlanta’s Luke Babbit hit a triple to put the Hawks up 57-54. Irving took charge, either scoring or assisting on 16 straight points. The Celtics gradually pulled away, taking a 10-point lead early in the fourth on Semi Ojeleye’s triple. RAINING DOWN Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer joked before the game that he regretted having his assistants work with the 6'10" Horford a couple of years ago to develop a strong presence beyond the perimeter. Horford entered the game shooting nearly 52 percent on 33 attempts from the arc. “I think there was just a real push from us and a credit to him that he could do it,” Budenholzer said. “It’s part of the way the game is, and his passing just opens up the court even more for him to drive and attack. He’s such a good player, such a smart player.” TIP-INS Celtics: Irving has scored more points — 245 — than any player in his first 11 games with Boston. ... With Marcus Morris getting the night off to rest his sore left knee, Aron Baynes started at center and finished with just two points and three rebounds in 15 minutes. Hawks: Malcolm Delaney returned after missing two games with a sprained right ankle and had 13 points. Marco Belinelli scored 19 despite a sore left Achilles. UP NEXT Celtics: Host the Lakers on Wednesday night (Thursday, PHL time). Hawks: Off until they visit Detroit on Friday night (Saturday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 7th, 2017

Harden s career-high 56 lead Rockets past Jazz, 137-110

HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden scored a career-high 56 points and added 13 assists in just 35 minutes to lead the Houston Rockets to a 137-110 victory over the Utah Jazz on Sunday night (Monday, PHL time). 56 points. 13 assists. James Harden sets a new career high in @HoustonRockets home win! pic.twitter.com/PcJaVel4el — NBA (@NBA) November 6, 2017 Harden finished 19-of-25 from the field after missing his last three attempts. The MVP runner-up was a perfect 7-for-7 from beyond the arc until he missed a step-back three-pointer midway through the fourth quarter as the shot clock was about to expire. Even when the Jazz could deny Harden his shot, he dished it off for someone else to score. Eric Gordon scored 20 points, Trevor Ariza had 14 and Nene scored 13 off the bench. Harden received a standing ovation from the Toyota Center crowd, which rained down "MVP! MVP!" chants at multiple points during the game. He had 22 points in both the first and third quarters, 30 at halftime and sat for the final 7:32 of the blowout. Donovan Mitchell led Utah with 17 points in 25 minutes off the bench. All five Jazz starters scored in double figures, led by Rudy Gobert, who had 13. Derrick Favors and Rodney Hood both had 12, Joe Ingles had 11, and Ricky Rubio added 10. Gobert was held to a season-low five rebounds in 25 minutes. The Rockets have won three straight, while the Jazz have lost back-to-back games following a three-game winning streak. Houston scored at least 119 points for a third straight game. Last season, the Rockets were 43-5 when scoring 110 points or more and 12-22 when failing to do so. TIP-INS Jazz: Gobert received a technical foul late in the first half for shouting at an official following a dunk. … Alec Burks scored 10 points in 23 minutes off the bench. … The Jazz shot 43.7 percent from the field, including 38.2 percent from three-point range. Rockets: Clint Capela had eight points, eight rebounds and four blocks, including two on Gobert. … Houston made 59.3 percent of its shots, including 59 percent from beyond the three-point line on 23-of-39 shooting. UP NEXT Jazz: Host the 76ers on Tuesday night (Wednesday, PHL time). Rockets: Host the Cavaliers on Thursday night (Friday, PHL time)......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 6th, 2017

Coach Bo says Maroons want to see more of their passionate fans

The fans of the University of the Philippines were really into it as their Fighting Maroons waged war against Adamson University in a crucial contest on Sunday at the Araneta Coliseum. Roaring at their boys for each and every one of their makes, roaring at the Soaring Falcons for each and every one of their makes, and roaring at the referees for each and every call, the State U crowd was, without a doubt, well and alive. Asked about it after they bowed down to Adamson, 70-86, head coach Bo Perasol answered, “Ganoon ba? Hindi ko napansin e.” Turning serious, however, the always amiable mentor said the coaching staff and the players had nothing but love for their faithful. As he put it, “I welcome that in the sense that they are into it – they care, they are passionate about winning. They have invested something so their emotions are into it.” He then continued, “Importante na (they feel) na, ‘I’m one with the team.’ Hindi yung, ‘Wala namang kwenta yang team na yan e.’” Indeed, so passionate were the UP fans that one of them figured in an incident late in the third quarter.   UP fans very unhappy with officiating. Maroons trail 45-35 vs. Adamson. pic.twitter.com/ykE4sCgO1c — Camille B. Naredo (@camillenaredo) Nobyembre 5, 2017   Not pleased with the officiating, an unnamed student from Diliman reportedly threw a piece of paper onto the court. Not long after, he was escorted out of his seat. Reacting to the incident, Perasol said, “Papel lang, susmaryosep.” Also, so passionate were the UP fans that all of it poured out onto social media.   BEST. SUPPORT. GROUP. EVER. 💚❤#UPFight #nowheretogobutUP ✊ pic.twitter.com/VDpaJVm1IB — UP Fighting Maroons (@upmbt) Nobyembre 5, 2017     How about UP getting good game calls and breaks? 💸💸💸 — UP Fighting Maroons (@upmbt) Nobyembre 5, 2017   All of those, the Fighting Maroons welcome, as their mentor re-emphasized. “It gives pressure for the team to deliver. Magandang hindi passive yung fans because if they are passive, the players may thing that it’s just okay,” he said. He then continued, “It’s not okay. We’re in a competition and we’re supposed to win.” Indeed, now being able to paint the town maroon is a welcome development for the UP men’s basketball team which had compiled a record of 13-113 from 2007 to 2015. “Exactly, that’s what’s happening. Yun ang sinasabi nating proseso of the community being part of the team and the team being part of the community,” Perasol said. He then continued, “Hinding-hindi mo mahihiwalay yung isa sa isa.” The State U head coach then went on to say how the UAAP’s more successful programs have always had passionate fans. “Kaya ngayon si UST, nakikita mong nagagalit sila kasi they know that they have a history of winning,” he said. The tamed Tigers are one loss away from a winless season – something that had been accomplished thrice by UP in just the past decade. “E mas masagwa noong panahon ng UP kasi walang galit e. Noong hindi kami natatalo, sabi lang nila, ‘E wala, ganoon talaga yan e. Good luck na lang guys,’” he said. Now, at the very least, the Fighting Maroons have a passionate fanbase right behind them. “Kaya nga sabi ko na kahit magalit na sila, okay lang yan. In a way, they are all now involved,” Perasol expressed. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 5th, 2017

Towns leads Timberwolves past floundering Mavericks 112-99

MINNEAPOLIS -- Karl-Anthony Towns had 31 points and 12 rebounds, Andrew Wiggins added 23 points on 9-for-14 shooting and the Minnesota Timberwolves beat the floundering Dallas Mavericks 112-99 on Saturday night for their first four-game winning streak in nearly five years. Holding Mavericks star Harrison Barnes scoreless in the second half, the Wolves enjoyed a blowout for once after the margin of their previous five victories totaled just 17 points. The last time they won four games in a row was Dec. 7-15, 2012, when Towns was just a junior in high school. Coming off a career-low two points Wednesday at New Orleans, when foul trouble against bulwarks DeMarcus Cousins and Anthony Davis limited him to 22 minutes, Towns responded like the Timberwolves needed him to and thought he would. He had seven points and two rebounds during a 13-0 run late in the third quarter that pushed their lead to 25 points. Barnes finished with 17 points for the Mavericks, who have the worst record in the NBA and their first 1-10 start since the 1993-94 season when they staggered out of the gate at 1-23 and finished 13-69 in coach Quinn Buckner's only year on the job. With franchise cornerstone Dirk Nowitzki not the same as his younger self, they've been relying heavily on their bounty of point guards. Dennis Smith Jr. had 18 points and Devin Harris (15 points) and J.J. Barea (14 points) provided a few sparks off the bench, but there's just not enough production to be found. The Mavericks entered the game with the third-lowest scoring average in the league. The Wolves improved to 6-1 with linchpin Jimmy Butler on the floor, having lost both games the tenacious, versatile small forward missed with a virus, but the upside to this one was that they won with minimal impact from their offseason headliner acquisition. Butler averaged 21.3 points over the previous three games, but the player getting the third-most minutes per night in the NBA was able to rest more than usual down the stretch with the Wolves in command from the middle of the first quarter on. Butler finished with a season-low four points in 34 minutes. Taj Gibson picked up some slack with 12 points and 10 rebounds, and Jeff Teague had 11 points and 10 assists. The reserves, playing as a five-man unit for long stretches, contributed often, too. Nemanja Bjelica and Tyus Jones each sank a pair of 3-pointers in the second quarter. Jamal Crawford used a shake-and-bake move for a 20-foot pull-up jumper he swished for a 90-62 lead that was the largest of the game for the Wolves. ROUGH ROAD AHEAD The Mavericks might have to wait a while longer for that next win. Their next 10 games include two matchups each with Oklahoma City and San Antonio and one against Cleveland, and all but one of them are against teams that made the playoffs last season. The vastly improved Timberwolves are the only outlier. They visit Dallas on Nov. 17. TIP-INS Mavericks: Nowitzki had seven points on 3-for-8 shooting in 22 minutes. ... Salah Mejri started at center for the first time this season and only the 18th time in 114 career games. The 7-foot-2 Tunisian, who had 13 rebounds and five blocks against the Pelicans, went scoreless in nine minutes of action while picking up three fouls. Timberwolves: Bjelica is second in the NBA in 3-point shooting, behind Oklahoma City's Raymond Felton. He's the only player on the team with at least one make from behind the arc in all nine games this season. ... The Wolves have attempted more free throws than their opponent in all nine games. UP NEXT Mavericks: Travel to Washington to play the Wizards on Tuesday night, their only game in the next six days before hosting the defending Eastern Conference champion Cleveland Cavaliers next weekend. Timberwolves: Stay home for the second half of a back-to-back set, hosting the Charlotte Hornets on Sunday night before a road trip to face the defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors on Wednesday night......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 5th, 2017