NBA

NBA record looms for Wizards' Westbrook, Mavs take down slumping Nets and Clippers top Lakers

By Sports Desk May 07, 2021

Russell Westbrook took another giant step towards an NBA record after teaming up with Bradley Beal to help the Washington Wizards push the Toronto Raptors to the verge of elimination from a spot the NBA play-in tournament with a 131-129 win in overtime. 

Westbrook posted 13 points, 17 rebounds and 17 assists for his 180th career triple-double, leaving him one shy of equalling Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson's all-time record on Thursday.

Former MVP Westbrook because the first player with three consecutive 17-plus assist games since Steve Nash in 2007.

Wizards star Beal scored half of his 28 points in the fourth quarter and overtime as Washington outlasted Toronto.

Raul Neto added a career-high 25 points and Robin Lopez had a season-best 24 for the Wizards (31-36), who hold a four-game lead over the Raptors (27-40) for the final play-in spot with five games remaining for both teams. 

Pascal Siakam matched his career best with 44 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists but missed a three-point attempt at the buzzer in overtime that would have won it for Toronto. 

Siakam joined Kawhi Leonard and Vince Carter as the only players with a 40-point, 10-rebound and five-assist game in franchise history.

Fred VanVleet sent the game to OT by hitting a shot from beyond the arc with 1.3 seconds to go in the fourth quarter. He finished with 22 and Gary Trent Jr. contributed 25 for Toronto.

 

Mavs withstand big night from Kyrie

Luka Doncic finished with 24 points and Tim Hardaway Jr. had 23 of his own as the Dallas Mavericks downed the slumping Brooklyn Nets 113-109, despite 45 points from Kyrie Irving. 

The Indiana Pacers inched closer to securing a spot in the play-in tournament with a 133-126 win over the Atlanta Hawks as Caris LeVert led the way with 31 points and Domantas Sabonis added 30 on 12-for-14 shooting from the field. Trae Young's double-double of 30 points and 10 assists was not enough for the Hawks. 

Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors rolled to a 118-87 victory at home to the Oklahoma City Thunder (21-46). Curry scored 34 points. The two-time MVP has now scored at least 30 points 18 times in his last 20 games (35th time this season).

Paul George had 24 points as the Los Angeles Clippers (45-22) beat cross-town rivals and defending champions the Los Angeles Lakers 118-94. 

 

LaMelo off target against Bulls

A day after his primary competitor for NBA Rookie of the Year, Anthony Edwards of the Minnesota Timberwolves, dropped 42 points, LaMelo Ball made only one of 10 shots from the field and scored just four points in the Charlotte Hornets' 120-99 loss to the Chicago Bulls. Ball had reached double digits in his previous three games after returning from a wrist injury. 

 

Caldwell-Pope strong to the hoop

Lakers fans did not have much to celebrate in Thursday's blowout loss to the Clippers, but Kentavious Caldwell-Pope did provide one highlight with this slam in Ivica Zubac's face.

 

Thursday's results

Chicago Bulls 120-99 Charlotte Hornets
Dallas Mavericks 113-109 Brooklyn Nets
Washington Wizards 131-129 Toronto Raptors (OT)
Detroit Pistons 111-97 Memphis Grizzlies 
Indiana Pacers 133-126 Atlanta Hawks
Golden State Warriors 118-97 Oklahoma City Thunder
Los Angeles Clippers 118-94 Los Angeles Lakers

 

Pelicans at 76ers

Zion Williamson and the New Orleans Pelicans (30-36) are just outside the cut for the play-in tournament and will face imposing opposition on Friday as they attempt to gain ground in the form of the Philadelphia 76ers (45-21), winners of six in a row. 

Related items

  • Cardinals respond to Jones speculation after five-sack showing Cardinals respond to Jones speculation after five-sack showing

    Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim insists his team are "not in the business of getting rid of good players", amid speculation over the future of Chandler Jones.

    Former New England Patriots pass-rusher Jones sat out OTAs and minicamp as well as reportedly requesting a trade as he entered this season, the last of his current contract.

    Last season, three-time Pro Bowler Jones suffered a torn bicep in Week 5 ending his campaign early.

    But the 31-year-old started 2021 with a bang, recording an astonishing five sacks as the Cardinals opened with a big 38-13 win at the Tennessee Titans.

    Ahead of the Cardinals playing the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday, Keim was asked whether the team would be able to tie Jones down to a new deal.

    "We are not in the business of moving on and getting rid of good football players," Keim said to Arizona Sports 98.7 FM.

    "You always want to get good players under contract, but there are always a million different moving parts. 

    "I have to continue to look at the roster moving forward, generally from a three-year standpoint."

    Per Stats Perform data, Jones' five-sack showing was just the eighth time this century a player has recorded that number in a single game. 

    The last player to achieve the feat was in fact Haason Reddick, also for the Cardinals, in Week 14 of last season against the New York Giants.

    Reddick has since moved on to the Carolina Panthers, but having Jones back with a point to prove should be of huge benefit.

    While Jones is focused on what takes place on the field, he acknowledges the contract situation is hard to ignore entirely.

    "I'm just playing football, honestly," Jones said. "I just let my agent take care of that – the contract situation – but it is the last year of my contract and I just let that take care of itself.

    "Is it something that, I mean, [I think about] off the field? Yeah, I mean, of course. I don't know where I'm gonna live next year. 

    "But in the same situation, I think, when the season starts, I tell my agent let's put all that to a side, you take care of that.

    "If you want to talk about it, you talk about it. As far as for me, I'm going to play, and I'm going to play my best football, and we'll see what happens then.

    "When it comes to the season, I think doing your job is essential, putting the team first, ignore the noise and just managing expectations.

    "I think I play best when I don't go in thinking about the deal or the contract."

    The Cardinals' Week 1 win was their second largest victory since Kliff Kingsbury became head coach in 2019. 

    They play a Vikings team who suffered a disappointing overtime defeat to the Cincinnati Bengals to begin the season.

  • Solskjaer convinced Sancho will improve after slow Man Utd start Solskjaer convinced Sancho will improve after slow Man Utd start

    Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has backed Jadon Sancho to come good after a slow start with the club.

    The 21-year-old has made five appearances for Untied since signing from Borussia Dortmund for around £73million after a high-profile transfer pursuit that lasted over a year.

    England international Sancho arrived to huge fanfare, though he is yet to register a goal or assist going into Sunday's Premier League trip to West Ham.

    A frustrating start for Sancho continued when he was sacrificed in the first half of Tuesday's Champions League loss to Young Boys, the winger taken off as part of a reshuffle when Aaron Wan-Bissaka was sent off.

    Solskjaer, though, insists nothing has changed in his evaluation of Sancho, who he feels can be a "top forward" for United over more than a decade.

    "He is learning all the time," Solskjaer told reporters before the West Ham clash.

    "As I said in training as well, he is learning our methods, he is learning the Premier League and of course, he knows the Champions League already from being at Dortmund.

    "He is a young boy, he is only 21 and he will improve. 

    "We signed him as we see a top forward for 10, 12, 15 years and I have not changed my mind on that.

    "He is so clean on the ball and is enthusiastic to learn and that is such a big thing when you come to Manchester United.

    "You are always going to get a chance and you play with some of the best players in the world, you are getting some fantastic coaching with the coaches I have got too."

    United will do battle with their former manager David Moyes when they take on West Ham, with Sancho not a certainty to start given Paul Pogba, Bruno Fernandes, Mason Greenwood and Cristiano Ronaldo are among the options in attacking positions.

    Since his sacking in 2014, Moyes has failed to win any of his seven games against United in all competitions, losing five of those.

    However, in-form Ronaldo has a mixed record against West Ham.

    The Portugal star was involved in six goals in his last four league appearances against them in his first spell in England (five goals, one assist), though he also suffered three top-flight defeats to the Hammers.

    Only against Chelsea (four) has Ronaldo suffered more Premier League losses than he has against West Ham.

  • Jimmy Greaves 1940-2021: English football's greatest ever goalscorer Jimmy Greaves 1940-2021: English football's greatest ever goalscorer

    Jimmy Greaves is among the finest players England has ever produced and remained one of the great entertainers long into retirement.

    Tottenham, Chelsea and England icon Greaves died on September 19 at the age of 81.

    A naturally clinical finisher with both feet, who terrorised defences throughout a record-breaking career, the inside forward is the leading goalscorer in the history of the English top flight.

    The World Cup winner found the back of the net a staggering 357 times in 516 First Division games and ended six seasons as the highest scorer.

    He is also Spurs' record goalscorer, having notched an incredible 266 goals from 379 appearances, and is fourth on the list of England's leading scorers, with 44 from 57 matches – including a record six hat-tricks.

    His status as the highest scorer in the top five European leagues was only lost as recently as 2017, when Cristiano Ronaldo surpassed his haul.

    Greaves glided past opponents with a sharp turn of pace and exhilarating skills, and would caress the ball beyond goalkeepers with ice-cool composure.

    The prolific maestro pounced on opportunities in a flash, could conjure up chances for himself out of nothing and provide assists with moments of magic.

    Born in Manor Park, East Ham, Greaves signed for Chelsea as a junior in 1956 and shattered a club record by bagging 114 goals for the youth team.

    He got his first-team chance on the opening day of the 1957-58 season and grabbed it with both hands, scoring a brilliant solo goal in a 1-1 draw against Tottenham, aged 17.

    Greaves helped himself to 13 hat-tricks for the Blues – within a stunning overall haul of 132 goals in 169 games – before making a switch to Milan, where he also demonstrated his goalscoring prowess but swiftly returned to London with Spurs after failing to settle in Italy.

    The ruthless marksman and his wife, Irene, moved in with his in-laws after sealing a £99,999 transfer to White Hart Lane in December 1961, having headed back to his homeland out of pocket.

    A modest superstar, Greaves would go for a pre-match meal of pie, eels and mash in Canning Town before showing he had not lost his appetite for scoring goals, establishing himself as a massive fans' favourite at Spurs.

    His debut hat-trick against Blackpool was a sign of things to come in an astonishing nine years at White Hart Lane, where the crowds flocked in to see a master at work.

    He won the FA Cup twice, netting in the 1962 final against Burnley and also lifting the famous trophy in 1967 after grabbing a double in the 5-1 1963 European Cup Winners' Cup final demolition of Atletico Madrid.

    Greaves was out of the game for three months in 1965 after contracting hepatitis but recovered to make the England squad for the 1966 World Cup.

    He played in the first three games of the tournament before picking up an injury and watched on as Geoff Hurst, his replacement, scored a hat-trick in a dramatic final victory over West Germany as the hosts were crowned world champions.

    While Greaves was denied the opportunity to feature in what remains England's finest hour, Hurst described him as "the greatest goalscorer ever in the English game" and a "genius".

    A battle with alcoholism followed his top-flight swansong at West Ham, but Greaves overcame his demons and shone brightly in the spotlight during a successful television career with his sharp wit and dry sense of humour.

    He formed a brilliant double act with Ian St John for the must-watch Saint and Greavsie show, which was a national institution, and he was also great value as a newspaper columnist and public speaker.

    Greaves survived a serious stroke in 2015 and declared he wanted to live until he was at least 90.

    A class act on and off the field, Greaves was a phenomenon, hugely respected and one of a kind.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.