Redskins

NBA Capsules

NBA Capsules

SAN ANTONIO (AP) Tony Parker had 31 points and the San Antonio Spurs earned their eighth consecutive win by shutting down the Phoenix Suns in the final quarter for a 108-99 victory on Saturday night.

Manu Ginobili added 20 points, Tiago Splitter had 13, and Boris Diaw finished with 11 for San Antonio (36-11), which has won 16 in a row at home.

The Spurs were without Tim Duncan (sore knee) and coach Gregg Popovich (illness) for a third consecutive game.

Michael Beasley had 25 points and Jared Dudley scored 23 for the Suns (15-29), who lost for the first time since coach Lindsey Hunter took over.

Parker had 11 points and five assists as San Antonio outscored Phoenix 27-17 in the fourth, forcing six turnovers in the period.

TRAIL BLAZERS 101, CLIPPERS 100

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Nicolas Batum had 20 points, 10 rebounds and a career-high 12 assists for his second triple-double in a week, and the Trail Blazers handed the Clippers their fourth straight loss.

The Clippers, playing without guard Chis Paul for the third straight game because of a bruised right kneecap, trailed by as many as 14 points in the first half but reclaimed the lead in the fourth quarter.

They held off the Blazers until Wesley Matthews got Portland within one with a layup and free throw. J.J. Hickson made a pair of foul shots to get the lead back for the Blazers with 45 seconds to go and Jamal Crawford missed a 19-foot jumper for the Clippers with 0.9 seconds left for the final margin.

Blake Griffin had 24 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds for Los Angeles.

76ERS 97, KNICKS 80

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Jrue Holiday scored a career-high 35 points, Nick Young had 20 and the 76ers cruised to the victory.

Evan Turner also added 20 points for the Sixers, who led from the start and beat the Knicks for the first time in four tries and second in eight games.

Carmelo Anthony needed 28 shots to get 25 points. He has 28 straight 20-point games, tied with Patrick Ewing for second-longest streak in franchise history. Richie Guerin did it 29 games in a row in 1961-62.

The Atlantic Division-leading Knicks, who are second in the Eastern Conference, have lost five of eight.

Amare Stoudemire had 20 points for New York. Jason Kidd, Iman Shumpert and J.R. Smith combined to go 0 for 17. Kidd had zero assists in 15 minutes.

ROCKETS 119, NETS 106

HOUSTON (AP) - James Harden scored 29 points, Chandler Parsons added 16 points and a career-high 11 assists and the Rockets beat the Nets for the 12th straight time.

Omer Asik had 20 points and 16 rebounds for the Rockets, who outrebounded the Nets 50-31 and outscored Brooklyn 60-24 in the paint.

Nets star Deron Williams scored 27 points, but cooled off after a 20-point first quarter. He was ejected with 1:07 left after arguing a call with referee David Jones. Brook Lopez scored 21 points and Joe Johnson added 13 for Brooklyn.

Jeremy Lin had 14 points, nine assists and six turnovers for Houston.

CAVALIERS 99, RAPTORS 98

TORONTO (AP) - Kyrie Irving made a 3-pointer with 0.7 seconds left to lift Cleveland to its third consecutive victory.

Headed to his first All-Star game, Irving added to his credentials by calmly draining a pull-up jumper from the top of the arc to give him 32 points on the night. Marreese Speights had 17 for the Cavaliers, and Tristan Thompson scored 14.

Toronto had five players score in double figures. Amir Johnson had 18 points and 12 rebounds, Alan Anderson scored 17 and Ed Davis finished with 16.

The Raptors had won seven of their previous nine meetings with the Cavaliers.

WIZARDS 86, BULLS 73

WASHINGTON (AP) - Emeka Okafor had 15 points and 16 rebounds, helping the Wizards to another victory.

Nene scored 16 points and John Wall had 15 for Washington, which has won consecutive games for the second time this season. The Wizards have won five straight at home for the first time in five years, and seven of 10 overall.

It's a marked improvement from the start of the season, when Washington (11-31) dropped 28 of its first 32 games.

Chicago had won a season-high three in a row for the third time. Nate Robinson scored 19 points for the Bulls, and Joakim Noah narrowly missed a triple-double with nine points, 17 rebounds and 10 assists, which equaled his career high.

JAZZ 114, PACERS 110, OT

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Al Jefferson scored 25 points and Paul Millsap had 21, leading Utah to the overtime win.

Utah scored the first six points in the extra session after blowing a 97-89 lead with 2:44 left in regulation. Gordon Hayward coughed up three turnovers to Indiana's George Hill in the final minute of the fourth.

Paul George scored 24 points, David West added 23 and Hill had 22 for Indiana (26-18), which lost for the third time in four road games. The Pacers outrebounded the Jazz 41-28.

Hayward scored 15 points, but had the ball stolen from him three times on the final three possessions for Utah in regulation.

BOBCATS 102, TIMBERWOLVES 101

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Gerald Henderson made a 3-pointer with 4.6 seconds left, helping Charlotte snap a 16-game home losing streak.

Kemba Walker led Charlotte with 25 points and Ramon Sessions finished with 23 as the Bobcats won at home for the first time since Nov. 21. The home slide was two short of the NBA record held by the 1993-94 Dallas Mavericks.

Henderson finished with 15 points and Bismack Biyombo had 10 points and 13 rebounds for Charlotte.

Luke Ridnour had 22 points, seven rebounds and seven assists for Minnesota, which has lost nine of 10.

NUGGETS 121, KINGS 93

DENVER (AP) - Ty Lawson scored 26 points, Andre Iguodala had 20 and Denver used a strong first three quarters to rout Sacramento.

Danilo Gallinari added 14 points for the Nuggets, who led 71-49 at intermission to set a season high for points in a half. They shot 62 percent in the first two quarters and had three players in double figures.

They led by as many as 35 in the second half and were up 101-69 heading into the fourth period when most of the regular players watched the rest of the game.

Aaron Brooks scored 16 points and Tyreke Evans had 15 for the Kings, who have lost four straight. DeMarcus Cousins was held to three points. It's the first time in his past 17 games he failed to score in double figures.

BUCKS 109, WARRIORS 102

MILWAUKEE (AP) - Brandon Jennings scored 20 points to push the Bucks to the win.

Milwaukee's Monta Ellis also had 20 points against his former team, while Ersan Ilyasova added 18 points and 12 rebounds. Larry Sanders added 16 points and 11 boards.

Stephen Curry led Golden State with 26 points. Klay Thompson added 19, and David Lee had 12 points and 15 rebounds.

Golden State has lost four consecutive games in Milwaukee and hasn't won a game at the Bradley Center since 2008.

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The Redskins are going to draft the best available player, unless they aren't

The Redskins are going to draft the best available player, unless they aren't

When their turn comes up in this draft, the Redskins are going to pick the best available player on the board. Unless they’re not. 

That is the mixed message delivered on Tuesday by Doug Williams, the team’s senior vice president for player personnel during his pre-draft press conference on Tuesday. 

Williams was asked what nearly every NFL personnel executive has been asked during this round of draft press conferences: Will the Redskins take the best player on the board or would they draft for need?

And Williams gave an answer similar to the ones that all of the other personnel guys gave. 

“You hear this cliché all the time, it’s always going to be the best player available, because at the same time if you’re looking for a need, the player you’re looking for a need might not be graded as high as the guy that’s on that board,” he said. 

That makes some fans crazy as they believe that you must fill needs in the draft. But reaching to fill needs is a good way to have a mediocre, disjointed draft. 

But there are times when the best available player is not the player the Redskins will pick. The topic of injuries came up and Williams talked about the situation at offensive tackle. Morgan Moses and Trent Williams currently are rehabbing from injuries and they won’t take the field during OTAs and minicamp. 

Doug Williams said that both players should be ready for training camp. He didn’t mention it but Trent Williams and Moses are signed for the next three and five years, respectively. That means that there is no need for a tackle in at least the first two rounds, and Williams agrees. 

“We can’t go into the draft drafting tackles, you know,” he said. 

So if, say, offensive tackle Mike McGlinchey of Notre Dame has the highest grade on the Redskins’ board when pick 13 comes up, they will not be taking the player with the best grade. They will “reach”, perhaps only slightly, to take a player at another position. 

The Redskins have a similar situation at quarterback. They are committed to Alex Smith for at least three seasons and it would be foolish to spend a high pick on a quarterback. Williams said that the Redskins are not in the quarterback business this year. If there is a top QB still on the board at pick 13, it’s likely that Williams and Bruce Allen would be looking for phone calls from teams that want to trade up and get their signal caller. 

The true test of how the team chooses needs vs. best available could well come this year. Let’s say that Da’Ron Payne, Minkah Fitzpatrick, and Tremaine Edmunds are all on the board when the Redskins’ pick comes up. While each team has its own grades, you probably won’t find many that don’t have Fitzpatrick and Edmunds a clear cut above Payne. The Redskins have needs on the defensive line, not so much at inside linebacker or in the secondary. Picking Payne at that point could be interpreted as reaching to fill a need while leaving more talented and more versatile players on the board. Going best available would almost surely mean choosing between Fitzpatrick and Edmunds. 

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Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCSand follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

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2018 NBA Playoffs Wizards-Raptors Game 5: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

2018 NBA Playoffs Wizards-Raptors Game 5: TV, live stream and radio info, things to watch

John Wall, Bradley Beal, Otto Porter and the Washington Wizards battle Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan, Serge Ibaka and the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday night in Game 5 of the 2018 NBA Playoffs.

Here is all you need to know: TV, live stream and radio info, tip-off time, plus three things to watch:

GAME 5: WASHINGTON WIZARDS AT TORONTO RAPTORS

Series: Series tied 2-2
Where: Air Canada Centre
Tip-off: 7:02 p.m. (earlier tipoff than usual)
TV: NBC Sports Washington (pregame coverage begins at 6 p.m.)
Live stream: NBCSportsWashington.com
Radio: 1500 AM

Pivotal game

The Wizards have done their part in winning both games at home to even up this series at 2-2. Now comes Game 5, which could very well determine who takes this series.

Winners of Game 5 in a seven-game series tied at 2-2 hold a 164-34 (.828) record all-time. That means teams that lose Game 5 come back to win the final two games and the series only 17.2 percent of the time.

The Wizards need to get this one and they know all too well why. Last year they were in this same position in their second round series against the Boston Celtics. They went down 0-2, won the next two games but then lost Game 5 and ultimately the series in seven games.

Road warriors

The Wizards will also have to do something they have yet to do in a while in Game 5 and that is win on the road. Though they have won eight straight home postseason games, they have lost their last six on the road. It goes back to that Celtics series when Washington lost all four games in Boston. The last time they won on the road in the playoffs was Game 6 last year against the Hawks.

The Raptors are particularly tough in Toronto. They were 34-7 this season at home, tied with the Houston Rockets for the best record in the NBA. 

The recent historical odds are also in Toronto's favor. Since 2003, the home team has won each of the first four games in a seven-game series 35 times. In those series, the home team has held a Game 5 record of 22-13 and a series record of 26-9. If the Raptors get Game 5, history will be on their side to go on to win the series.

Can Otto get going?

Games 3 and 4 in Washington saw All-Star Bradley Beal break out to score 28 and 31 points. Will we see the same from Otto Porter before this series is over?

Game 4 seemed to suggest that is possible. After scoring only one point in the first half, Porter erupted for 10 points in the third quarter alone. Though he only scored 12 points in the game overall, it was the most aggressive we have seen him all series.

Porter is averaging just 10.3 points per game through four playoff games. He is shooting 50 percent from the field and 55.6 percent from three, and as long as the Wizards are winning he won't complain, but Porter can do much more than that on offense. If he starts scoring more, the Wizards will be tough to stop.

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MORE FROM WIZARDS-RAPTORS SERIES:

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WALL IS BOYCOTTING DRAKE'S MUSIC DURING SERIES

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For more on the Wizards-Raptors series, check out or latest Wizards Tipoff podcast: