Urban: Padres have Giants' number no more


Urban: Padres have Giants' number no more

July 15, 2011


Mychael Urban

It wasnt long ago that the Padres, winners of 15 of 21 games against the Giants in 2010 and the early stages of 2011, seemed to have the defending champs number.San Diegos bullpen, in particular, had exhibited an uncanny dominance over San Francisco. A late Padres lead was all but certain to morph into another disheartening Giants loss.A mere four games later, the latest a fairly resounding victory behind Tim Lincecum and fueled by Andres Torres on Friday night at PETCO nee AT&T South Park, the tables look to have been turned in a huge way.
RECAP: Torres leads Giants to 6-1 victory over Padres
And they were turned, fittingly enough, when the Giants finally solved that stingy band of San Diego relievers.

It happened the last time the Padres were at AT&T North, helping the hosts salvage a four-game split after dropping the first two games in all-too-familiar fashion, and it happened again Thursday night when Aubrey Huffs ninth-inning homer tied a game that San Francisco put out of reach with a rare outburst in extra innings.On Friday, no such heroics were needed. The Giants took the Padres lockdown pen out of the equation by taking an early lead and continued to pile on, giving Lincecum a rare respite from the typical need-to-be-perfect stress that seems to come with most of his assignments.Lincecum was not perfect; he fought himself at various points in the evening, especially in a sloppy fourth inning in which he looked like he was playing cricket at times, bouncing balls toward home with strange regularity. That was the lone inning in which the Padres nicked him -- for one run -- and it took a terrific two-out catch from Torres to keep things from getting messier still, but in an odd way Lincecums night was a testament to how great he truly is.He wasnt at his best, throwing 27 pitches in a meat-grinder of a first innings and running his pitch count over 110 by the sixth, but make no mistake: He was damn good.So were the Giants in general. Check that. So are the Giants in general. All kinds of stats dont reflect that, but the ones that make up the National League West standings most certainly do.And the Padres, once and for all, have to face facts: Their pink slips has been taken away and torn up. Owners of the Giants no more.

Draymond responds to Embiid: 'Man, I love that dude'


Draymond responds to Embiid: 'Man, I love that dude'

Draymond Green and Joel Embiid are two of the biggest trash talkers in the NBA. 

After the 76ers blew a 22-point halftime lead to the Warriors on Saturday, Embiid tweeted "we know what it feels like to blow a big lead" to take a jab at the Warriors' blowing a 3-1 lead in the NBA Finals two years ago. 

Green finally saw the tweet and it looks like it's all fun and games between the two. The Warriors' defensive star says he's "looking forward to playing against you (Embiid) for years." 

While tweeting the response, Green had even more to say. 

In the Warriors' 124-116 win over the 76ers on November 18, Green scored eight points, grabbed seven rebounds and dished eight assists. Embiid scored 21 points to go with eight rebounds.

Gameday: Bring on Lonzo Ball vs De'Aaron Fox in the NBA


Gameday: Bring on Lonzo Ball vs De'Aaron Fox in the NBA

SACRAMENTO -- The Kings were treated rudely by the Denver Nuggets to open their three-game homestand on Monday. They’ll get another shot to pick up a win Wednesday when the upstart Los Angeles Lakers swing into Golden 1 Center.

Sacramento has struggled to find consistency this season on the road, but they’ve been able to ride their home crowd to impressive wins over Oklahoma City, Philadelphia and Portland. If they can knock off the Lakers, they improve to .500 at home on the season. 

The Lakers are coming off a come-from-behind win over the Chicago Bulls on Tuesday and have to play Sacramento on the second night of a back-to-back. They are a young and exciting team, that present plenty of matchup issues for the Kings.


Lakers by 1


De’Aaron Fox vs. Lonzo Ball -- Let the games begin! The drama surrounding these two dates back to college. Fox ran over Ball at the NCAA level, outscoring the former UCLA Bruin in both games last season, including a 39-point outburst during a tournament game. Ball missed the summer league matchup between the two, causing a bit of a stir on social media. Wednesday night is nothing more that a pair of 19-year-olds playing hoops against one another while hundreds of thousands of people watch intently. No pressure, kids.


Kings: 4-13, fifth place in Pacific

Lakers: 8-10, second place in Pacific


Kings: SG Buddy Hield (sprained ankle) probable, PF Harry Giles (bilateral knee rehab) out until January.

Lakers: PF Larry Nance Jr. (hand) out.


BRIGHT LIGHTS -- The world is watching. Sacramento doesn’t draw the attention of the national media all that often, but plenty of eyes will be on the Kings/Lakers matchup on Wednesday. Will the Kings bring the defensive intensity that helped them knock off the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday or will they fade like they did against Denver last time out?   

REBOUND -- The Kings are one of the worst rebounding teams in the NBA and they’ll face a team that knows how to hit the glass. Dave Joerger needs his guards to get involved if they hope to avoid another lopsided rebounding deficit. 

CONTAIN KUZMA -- Ball gets all the pub, but it’s the late first rounder out of Utah that is turning heads. Fresh off a 22-point performance Tuesday against the Bulls, Kyle Kuzma is posting nearly 17 points per game while starting at power forward for the Lakers. He’s a player that plenty of teams are now regretting passing on in the 2017 NBA Draft. 


These two teams split the season series 2-2 last season, with each team winning one at home and one on the road. Los Angeles owns a huge 270-153 lead in the all-time series and a 92-44 advantage during the Sacramento-era 88-47. 


“It’s fun. Sometimes there’s too many haters out there. It is what it is. Smile and enjoy it. I think it will be a great opportunity for those two guys to begin their careers.” Dave Joerger on the Fox/Ball matchup