Capitals

Gatson, Sam Houston State beat Samford 73-57

Gatson, Sam Houston State beat Samford 73-57

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) Darius Gatson led three Sam Houston State players in double figures with 15 points as the Bearkats topped Samford 73-57 Saturday night in a nonconference contest.

Gatson hit 9 of 10 from the foul line and added four assists, while Will Bond had 13 points and Terrance Motley 10 for Sam Houston State (5-5).

Clide Geffrard Jr. led the Bulldogs (2-10) with 16 points and six rebounds, and Raljon Kelly had 15 points.

The Bearkats led 38-30 at halftime. Samford cut the advantage to 44-40 in the first 5 minutes of the second half, but Sam Houston State's Jeremy McKay hit a 3-pointer to extend the lead. About 7 minutes later, Motley hit a jumper to spark a 6-0 run that expanded the lead to 59-47.

The Bearkats scored 19 points off 16 Samford turnovers, including nine steals, and outscored the Bulldogs off the bench 39-6.

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In need of a right wing and a spark, the Capitals recall playoff hero Devante Smith-Pelly

In need of a right wing and a spark, the Capitals recall playoff hero Devante Smith-Pelly

Down a right wing and in need of a spark, the Capitals recalled forward and 2018 playoff hero Devante Smith-Pelly from the Hershey Bears on Friday.

The news comes in the wake of a serious looking injury to T.J. Oshie suffered in Game 4 Thursday against the Carolina Hurricanes. Following the game, head coach Todd Reirden told the media that Oshie “will not be with our team for a while.

Now a Capitals team that has been held to a single goal by Carolina in the past two games will enter what is essentially a must-win scenario in Game 5 without one of its top forwards. Washington is in need of some serious help.

Enter Smith-Pelly.

Smith-Pelly, 26, was tremendous in Washington’s Stanley Cup run, scoring seven goals in 24 games including the game-tying goal in the decisive Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final. That success earned him a new contract for the 2018-19 season, but his offensive touch did not carry over into the new campaign. After a rocky season with only four goals and four assists in 54 games, Smith-Pelly was waived by the Caps in order to clear cap space for the trade deadline. When a player is placed on waivers, every team in the NHL has a chance to claim him. Smith-Pelly was exposed to every team in the NHL and every team passed on him, allowing Washington to re-assign him to the Hershey Bears in the AHL.

Despite the surprise of clearing waivers, Smith-Pelly has made the most of his time in Hershey. In 20 games with the Bears, he recorded six goals and eight assists, including one hat trick performance on March 9 against the Hartford Wolfpack.

Washington already had two extra forwards on the roster as both Chandler Stephenson and Dmitrij Jaskin were healthy scratches for Game 4. Yet, the team still felt the need to recall Smith-Pelly. This does not seem like a move the team would make just to scratch him as an extra forward.

Smith-Pelly is back in Washington and fans should expect him back in the lineup for Game 5 on Saturday. Whether they will see the Smith-Pelly from the 2018 playoffs or from the 2018-19 regular season remains to be seen, but the answer to that question could decide if Washington advances or soon joins the Tampa Bay Lightning and Pittsburgh Penguins as teams upset in the first round.

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2019 Redskins Draft Bracket: It's Dalton Risner vs. Brian Burns in the final, and it shouldn't be close

2019 Redskins Draft Bracket: It's Dalton Risner vs. Brian Burns in the final, and it shouldn't be close

NBC Sports Washington wants Redskins fans to help decide the team's ideal 2019 first-round pick by voting in the Redskins Draft Bracket on Twitter. Before you vote, though, take in this breakdown of the final matchup.

The championship round of the 2019 Redskins Draft Bracket features Dalton Risner going up against Brian Burns.

So, how'd the two prospects get here, and who should win the whole thing as the fans' ideal first-round pick? Let's answer those questions now.

Risner: Frankly, Risner's rise is a total shock. The Kansas State lineman has ousted Daniel Jones, Jachai Polite and Montez Sweat(!). All three of those can be perceived as upsets. Can he possibly pull off a fourth?

Burns: Burns dropped two LSU foes in Devin White and Greedy Williams, then took out Drew Lock to get here. Perhaps he's the one who'll end Risner's wild run through the this tournament.

Who should win?: With his versatility, strength and consistency, Risner should absolutely improve whatever NFL offensive line he ends up on. 

However, his pairing with Burns should go one way, and one way only: With Burns winning. Easily.

Yes, the Redskins need a guard, which Risner could play if asked since the team already has Trent Williams and Morgan Moses at tackle. 

Yes, adding a young, cheap talent is also necessary, considering how much money the 'Skins have invested up front already. 

But the impact of Burns, a speedster off the edge who could elevate Washington's defense as a threat opposite Ryan Kerrigan, would far outweigh Risner's.

That's not to mention that Risner would be quite a reach at pick No. 15, while Burns figures to go right around that slot.

Risner's trip through this setup will go down in Redskins Draft Bracket history. It will be remembered fondly and give hope to future prospects down the line. But it should also end in a blowout, and with Burgundy and Gold fans crowning Brian Burns as their dream first-rounder.

You've heard the case for both players. Now, retweet or like depending on whom you'd prefer to see move on in the bracket.

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