NBA Capsules

NBA Capsules

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) LeBron James had 27 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists, and the Miami Heat handed the Charlotte Bobcats their 16th straight loss, 105-92 on Wednesday night.

Dwyane Wade scored 29 points and had nine rebounds as Miami extended its winning streak to six.

Charlotte cut the Miami lead to 84-82 when Gerald Henderson completed a three-point play with 7:16 left. But James knocked down a 3-pointer, Wade hit a pair of jumpers, and Shane Battier added a 3-pointer from the right corner to complete an 11-3 run that pushed the lead to 10.

Kemba Walker had 27 points, and Ramon Sessions added 19 points for the Bobcats (7-21), who haven't won since Nov. 24.

Hornets 97, Magic 94

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - Robin Lopez had a season-high 29 points, and Greivis Vasquez scored a season-best 27 as New Orleans snapped an 11-game losing streak with a victory over Orlando.

Orlando had a chance to tie the game in the closing seconds, but came up empty on a 3-point attempt by Nikola Vucevic.

It was the Hornets' first win since Dec. 3 and their fourth straight regular-season victory over the Magic.

Jameer Nelson had 28 points and 10 rebounds for Orlando, and Vucevic added 19 points. The Magic dropped their third consecutive game, all since starting forward Glen Davis injured his shoulder.

Nuggets 126, Lakers 114

DENVER (AP) - Corey Brewer matched his career high with 27 points, and Denver overcame a 40-point effort by Kobe Bryant to beat the Los Angeles Lakers for its seventh straight win at home.

Brewer made four of his six 3-pointers in the final 12-plus minutes, helping the Nuggets hold off the Lakers, whose five-game winning streak was snapped.

Bryant, who scored at least 40 points for the 116th time in his career, has netted at least 30 in 10 straight games.

Kenneth Faried had 21 points and 15 rebounds, and Danilo Gallinari added 19 points for Denver. Ty Lawson had 17 points to go with 14 assists. Andre Iguodala also scored 17 points.

Knicks 99, Suns 97

PHOENIX (AP) - J.R. Smith sank a baseline 21-footer at the buzzer after a Phoenix turnover with a second to play, giving depleted New York a victory over the Suns.

Smith's tough jumper from 15 feet had tied it at 97 with 10.6 seconds left. Then, after the turnover, Jason Kidd inbounded to Smith, who got the shot off as he sailed toward the out of bounds line. Smith scored 27 and Kidd 23.

Jared Dudley had a career-high 36 for Phoenix, including two free throws that put the Suns ahead 97-95 with 34.5 seconds to go.

New York was without the NBA's No. 2 scorer Carmelo Anthony (hyperextended knee) and Raymond Felton (finger), both hurt in the Christmas day loss to the Lakers in Los Angeles. The Knicks said X-rays on Felton's right fifth finger revealed a fracture.

Chris Copeland and Tyson Chandler added 14 points apiece for the Knicks.

Cavaliers 87, Wizards 84

WASHINGTON (AP) - Tristan Thompson's three-point play with 24.4 seconds remaining gave Cleveland a victory over Washington and its first two-game winning streak of the season.

Kyrie Irving, who had 26 points to lead Cleveland, made one of two free throws with 9.5 seconds left after Jordan Crawford and Garrett Temple missed jumpers for the Wizards. Crawford made two free throws with 8.5 seconds left to cut the lead to 86-84. Irving hit one of two, and Crawford missed a 3-pointer as time ran out.

Irving had 20 of his 26 points in the first half for the Cavaliers, who improved to 7-23. Two of their wins are against Washington, losers of eight straight.

Thompson had a season-high 15 points and 12 rebounds.

Crawford and Emeka Okafor led the Wizards with 17 points. Nene had 16.

Hawks 126, Pistons 119, 2OT

ATLANTA (AP) - Josh Smith scored 31 points, Al Horford added 22, and Atlanta beat Detroit in double overtime.

The Hawks blew a 22-point, fourth-quarter lead as Detroit reserves Will Bynum and Charlie Villanueva scored a combined 26 points in the final period of regulation.

Atlanta has won two straight and eight of 12. Detroit has lost seven of nine.

Bynum finished with 31 points, one less than his career high, and assisted on the last two baskets of regulation, when Andre Drummond's dunk cut the lead to two and Austin Daye's 3-pointer gave the Pistons a 101-100 lead with 4 seconds remaining.

Rockets 87, Timberwolves 84

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - James Harden scored 17 of his 30 points in the fourth quarter, and Houston rallied to win its fifth straight, topping Minnesota.

Harden's drive to the basket gave Houston (16-12) an 85-84 lead with 39 seconds left. He drove again to make it a three-point lead with 11.7 seconds to go and scored 15 of the Rockets' final 17 points.

Omer Asik added nine points and 17 rebounds for the Rockets, who edged the Wolves after beating their previous three opponents by at least 22 points.

J.J. Barea scored 18 for Minnesota (13-13), and Shved added 16. Kevin Love had 12 rebounds, but scored just seven points on 3 of 14 shooting. He missed all seven of his 3-point attempts.

It was Rockets coach Kevin McHale's first game back in his home state since his 23-year-old daughter, Sasha, died on Nov. 24 of complications from lupus.

76ers 99, Grizzlies 89

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - Dorell Wright scored 28 points, and Spencer Hawes had 20, season-highs for both, and Philadelphia snapped a six-game road losing streak with a victory over Memphis.

Wright was inserted into the lineup for Jason Richardson, who sat out with a low back strain. Wright was 8 of 11 from the field, part of the Sixers shooting 52 percent, including 9 of 16 outside the arc.

Thaddeus Young and Jrue Holiday had 13 points each for Philadelphia, Holiday adding nine assists. Nick Young finished with 12 points. Hawes had five of Philadelphia's season-high 12 blocked shots.

Zach Randolph led the Grizzlies with 23 points and nine rebounds, and Marc Gasol had 18 points and eight rebounds. Memphis, which lost its second straight, played without leading scorer Rudy Gay, who was out because of ``personal reasons.''

Bucks 108, Nets 93

MILWAUKEE (AP) - Brandon Jennings scored 25 points, Monta Ellis added 20 points and a season-high six steals, and Milwaukee beat short-handed Brooklyn for the 13th straight time.

Brook Lopez had 21 points and 10 rebounds as the Nets missed a chance to get to .500 on the road (6-7) and lost their third straight.

The Nets were without starting guard Deron Williams, who used his wrist to brace himself as he fell to the court Tuesday in a home loss to Boston. C.J. Watson made his first start of the season and 60th of his career.

Trailing 78-67 after three, the Nets made it a close game in the fourth quarter, getting to 84-80, but Milwaukee answered with 3-pointers from Ersan Ilyasova, Ellis, and Mike Dunleavy to push the lead to 11.

The Nets fell to 3-10 in December.

Ellis and Jennings outscored Joe Johnson and Watson 45-21.

Spurs 100, Raptors 80

SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Tim Duncan scored 15 points, and San Antonio rolled to a victory over Toronto that snapped the Raptors' five-game winning streak.

Manu Ginobili added 14 points, Tony Parker 13, and Tiago Splitter and Stephen Jackson each had 10 for San Antonio (22-8), which has won three straight. Kawhi Leonard had nine points and 10 rebounds.

Alan Anderson and Amir Johnson both had 12 points for Toronto (9-20).

Duncan had six rebounds and was 6 for 11 from the field in only 27 minutes as the Spurs' balanced attack wore down the Raptors. None of Toronto's starters scored in double figures as San Antonio's starters outscored its counterparts 54-25.

Warriors 94, Jazz 83

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Stephen Curry scored 23 points, David Lee added 18, and Golden State beat Utah.

Curry set the tone by scoring the Warriors' first 11 points. He hit two 3-pointers and made three free throws after being fouled on another shot beyond the arc - all in less than a minute. Curry added eight rebounds, seven assists and a steal.

Jarrett Jack and Klay Thompson had 15 points each for the Warriors, who dominated on the fast break and hit 9 of 18 3-point attempts.

Al Jefferson led Utah with 18 points and 10 rebounds, and Paul Millsap added 14 points.

The Warriors led by as many as 15 points in the first half, and took a 75-58 lead into the fourth quarter.

Trail Blazers 109, Kings 91

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - LaMarcus Aldridge had 28 points and 12 rebounds, and Portland beat Sacramento to avenge a loss on Sunday.

Nicolas Batum scored 18 points and J.J. Hickson added 17 points and 14 rebounds for the Blazers, who built a double-digit lead in the second quarter and then ran away from the Kings. Portland led by as many as 26 points. Rookie point guard Damian Lillard had 17 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds.

John Salmons led the Kings with 19 points. Reserve Isaiah Thomas had 12 points, and Jason Thompson added 11. The Kings are 1-12 on the road this season - the only win coming Dec. 8 against the Blazers.

Portland, which has won nine of 10 games at home, tied the season series with the Kings after losing to them on Sunday in Sacramento, which snapped the Blazers' five-game winning streak.

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We have ourselves a goalie rotation in Washington


We have ourselves a goalie rotation in Washington

It’s happened. The Caps no longer seem to have a No. 1 goalie anymore, they have a No. 1 and 1a.

That’s right, we have a goalie rotation in Washington.

“There's no sense riding one,” Barry Trotz said after practice on Monday. “[Braden Holtby] is coming back and looking better every game and [Philipp Grubauer] played pretty well for a long stretch so why not have both of them going?”

Grubauer got the start Sunday in Philadelphia and Holtby is slated to get the start Tuesday against the Dallas Stars. After that we will have to wait and see.


Trotz has no layout for which goalie he wants to start and when in the remaining ten games. He is not thinking about each goalie splitting five games or which one he wants to use more.

Nope. Trotz has just one thing on his mind. It is all about who starts the next game, that’s it.

“I think you just go with a guy that's hot at the time and your team feels comfortable with and go from there,” Trotz said.

So where does this leave the goaltending situation when it comes to the playoffs? A goalie rotation is all well and good in the regular season, but he has to have one starter for the postseason, right?

Not necessarily.


When Trotz was asked if he philosophically believed in having one starter for the playoffs, Trotz initially said he would not answer, but then said, “Why don't you ask Mike Sullivan what he thinks.”

Sullivan, of course, is the head coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins who has led his team to a Stanley Cup in each of the past two seasons despite turning to both goalie Marc-Andre Fleury and Matt Murray in both seasons.

While Pittsburgh’s goalie rotation was largely based on injury, however, it still provides an example of how using both goalies can work in the playoffs and that seems to be the path the Caps are headed on at the moment.

Said Trotz, “You just have to go with your gut who you think is going to get the job done.”

UMBC's NCAA Tournament hopes end vs. Kansas State, but its Cinderella run was unforgettable


UMBC's NCAA Tournament hopes end vs. Kansas State, but its Cinderella run was unforgettable

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — UMBC's improbable run through the NCAA Tournament was brief. The statement the Retrievers made and their place in history is forever.

For one weekend in March, the tiny commuter school from Baltimore known for its academics and championship-winning chess team captured the hearts of the college basketball world and beyond. UMBC became the first No. 16 seed to knock off a No. 1 in March Madness, a victory over Virginia that made the Retrievers the ultimate Cinderella.

The fairytale came to an end Sunday night in a 50-43 loss to No. 9 Kansas State -- heartbreaking because it was a game UMBC could have won, but still satisfying because the Retrievers touched so many people by accomplishing what many thought was impossible.

"We put our name on the map. We gave hope to teams that come to the tournament with lower seeds," said senior guard K.J. Maura. "I think we gave hope to guys that are not even that tall like me. People that feel like they are underdogs in their life, I think we gave hope to everything they want to do in life."


Stephen Curry noticed the team and sent UMBC the sneakers the team wore against Kansas State. The Golden State Warriors had his Curry 5s, which are in limited release, and other swag sent to the team. U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams declared the Retrievers "Surgeon General approved" and posted a photo of himself on Facebook wearing a sweatshirt from his alma mater.

NFL quarterback Aaron Rodgers tweeted to UMBC guard Joe Sherburne, who claims to be Rodgers' biggest fan. And for a team addicted to the video game "Fortnite," their dreams were made when Ninja, a popular gamer who recently played against rapper Drake and JuJu Smith-Schuster of the Pittsburgh Steelers, FaceTimed with the team early Sunday.

"They play with passion, they play with heart, they play together," coach Ryan Odom said. "We do things together for one another, and obviously when you have a big win like that (over Virginia) and it's so shocking, you know, people love to see that. They love to see the upset.

"And our guys handled it with grace and understood the circumstances. They weren't pounding their chests or anything. They expected to be here and expected to compete."

When UMBC returned to the locker room following its ouster, Odom had written just one word on the whiteboard. The Retrievers needed a buzzer-beating 3 against Vermont to win their conference title and make the NCAA Tournament, but they showed up believing they could beat Virginia, and the same about Kansas State.


So Odom simply penned "Proud" on the board for his players.

"Just very proud of these kids and what they've been able to do as the representatives that they are for our university," Odom said. "Just captured our country and beyond, to be honest, from a sporting perspective and it's really, really neat to see."

Sherburne said Odom relayed stories from friends who had texted or called from outside the country to rave about UMBC. Near tears after an 0-for-9 shooting night, Sherburne found consolation in the joy UMBC brought to so many.

"From when we beat Vermont until the last two hours were the greatest time of my life," Sherburne said. "What we did, everyone in here, it's the greatest time of our lives."

Odom arrived at UMBC two years ago and inherited a team accustomed to losing. He told them he was going to get them to .500 that first year; they thought he was joking. But slowly the culture changed and the Retrievers did everything Odom told them they could accomplish.

And then some.

"When I got here, first we were a four-win team that year, and then the next year we went on to win seven games," said graduate student Jairus Lyles. "Then Coach Odom and his staff came in, we won 21 games and this year we had a tremendous season."

Odom doesn't know how far the UMBC program can grow. Those four letters are now synonymous with the biggest upset in college basketball history, but it's a long way from becoming a basketball school.

"UMBC is a unique place -- lot of high achieving kids on campus," Odom said. "We want guys that want to be great from a basketball perspective and want to play after college. But, at the same time, we want folks that are highly motivated academically that want to do great things past basketball. Because the air goes out of the ball at some point for everybody."