Redskins

Mayo has 40, Mavs win in McHale's return

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Mayo has 40, Mavs win in McHale's return

HOUSTON (AP) O.J. Mayo scored 40 points, including 10 in the last three minutes, to lift the Dallas Mavericks to a 116-109 victory over the Rockets on Saturday night in coach Kevin McHale's return to the Houston bench.

James Harden had 30 points at halftime, but the Mavericks slowed him down in the second half. He scored just nine points in the second half.

McHale rejoined the team on Saturday after almost a month away from the team, and two weeks after the death of his daughter.

Chris Kaman added 20 points for Dallas, and Vince Carter and Darren Collison had 12 apiece.

A three-point play by Harden cut the Dallas lead to two points before a jump shot by Mayo made it 109-104. A 3-pointer by Toney Douglas seconds later put Houston back within two with about a minute to go, but Mayo's 3 seconds later extended the lead and the Mavericks held on for the win.

The Rockets battled back from a 19-point deficit with a strong second quarter to lead at halftime and were up by nine points with 7 1/2 to go. But Mayo got hot and the Rockets came up short as Dallas extended its winning streak in the series to eight games.

McHale took a leave of absence on Nov. 10 to be with his family as his daughter's health worsened. Alexandra ``Sasha'' McHale died Nov. 24 of complications from Lupus. She was 23.

Many of the Mavericks went over to McHale and hugged or patted him after introductions, and he received a standing ovation when the public address announcer welcomed him back to the team.

Dallas used a 13-2 run to take a 102-100 lead with about 4 1/2 minutes left. Carter scored five points to power the run, and Brandan Wright capped it with a dunk.

Chandler Parsons made the second of two free throws for the Rockets before Mayo scored five quick points to extend the Mavericks' lead to 107-101 with less than three minutes left.

Parsons finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds, and Harden had nine assists and six rebounds.

The Rockets opened the second half with a 10-4 run to extend their lead to 76-67 with 8 1/2 minutes left in the quarter. The Rockets continued their hot 3-point shooting from the first half early in the quarter as Harden and Jeremy Lin both hit 3s to power that run.

Dallas got going after that and an 8-2 spurt got the Mavericks within 78-75 with about five minutes left in the third quarter.

Houston was up by eight near the end of the third quarter, but Jae Crowder's 3-pointer with 15 seconds left cut the Rockets' lead to 89-84 entering the fourth quarter.

The Mavericks were up by 19 points with less than two minutes left in the first quarter after a long 3-pointer by Carter and thanks in large part to a 16-point quarter by Mayo.

Houston used a 35-15 run after that to erase the deficit and take a 55-54 lead four minutes before halftime. Harden scored 17 points and Houston hit five 3-pointers in that stretch. Harden had two of them, and he waved three fingers to the crowd while running down the court after the second one.

The Rockets shot 70 percent and scored a season-high 42 points in the second quarter to just 40.9 percent shooting by the Mavericks to lead 66-63 at halftime.

NOTES: Houston's 42 second-quarter points marked the first time the Rockets have scored 40 points in a quarter since Dec. 31, 2010, against Toronto. ... Mayo has scored at least 20 points 11 times this season.

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Former Redskins CB Shawn Springs wouldn't mind a red, white and blue color scheme with new name

Former Redskins CB Shawn Springs wouldn't mind a red, white and blue color scheme with new name

Over the next few days, and in the spirit of a Presidential election year, NBC Sports Washington is polling ex-Redskins players and NFLers who grew up in the DMV for their thoughts on the burgundy-and-gold's pending name change - and what name THEY would like to see.  

With the Redskins officially reviewing their name for a seemingly imminent change, suggestions from fans have poured in. 

Not only do you see name ideas like the "Washington Red Tails" or "Washington Warriors", but nowadays you see logo mockups, uniform designs and new color schemes to go along with them. With almost too many to choose, former Washington all-pro cornerback Shawn Springs highlighted the best suggestions he's seen.

"I like the Washington Warriors or the Senators," Springs told NBC Sports Washington. "With the Senators, you have the Capitals and Nationals, so you can keep that theme in DC."

Springs, a Silver Spring native, played in Washington from 2004-to-08, tallying 12 interceptions, 250 tackles and 52 passes defended. He seemed to like the idea of including the Redskins in the nation's capital theme, especially if it meant changing the team's color scheme to match every other pro team in the city.

"I like the fact that the Nats, Wizards [and Capitals] all wear red white and blue," he said. "I think that'd be a real cool thing for DC. And hell, both the [Nationals and Capitals] won. I just like something that's gonna give you a theme with the rest of the teams [in DC]."

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Washington's controversial name could be seen as divisive for the city's sports fans, so what better way to unite everyone than every team sharing the same color scheme. Pittsburgh is the only other city whose pro sports teams (Penguins, Steelers, Pirates) use the same color scheme, and it certainly works for them. 

One obstacle going with the Senators would be the fact that the name belonged to the city's baseball team from 1901-1960 and again as an expansion team from 1961 to 1971. But Senators 1.0 moved to Minnesota to become the Twins and Senators 2.0 left quickly for Texas to become the Rangers. Baseball has since returned to DC and the Nationals couldn't be a better name for the franchise. Why not bring "Senators" back in a different sport?

RELATED: COMPREHENSIVE LIST OF REDSKINS FAN-GENERATED NEW NAMES

You can recapture some of the town's sports history and perhaps even recycle some of the logo/uniform concepts they used years ago. Not to mention how cool it'd be for a Walter Johnson jersey to become appropriate attire at an NFL game.

Whatever the team's name ends up being, this whole saga has bred a ton of creativity and done a lot of heavy lifting for everyone set to choose new fantasy football team names this year.

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Ex-Redskins CB Fred Smoot says team officials like 'two or three' replacement names

Ex-Redskins CB Fred Smoot says team officials like 'two or three' replacement names

Over the next few days, and in the spirit of a Presidential election year, NBC Sports Washington is polling ex-Redskins players and NFLers who grew up in the DMV for their thoughts on the burgundy-and-gold's pending name change - and what name THEY would like to see.  

The Washington Redskins released a statement on Friday announcing they are undergoing a "thorough review" of the team name after major corporate sponsors FedEx, Nike, PepsiCo, and others put pressure on the organization to change the mascot.

At this point, a name change seems inevitable. So, what will the team's new moniker be?

Former Redskins cornerback Fred Smoot told NBC Sports Washington on Sunday that the team's top decision makers, especially owner Dan Snyder, have a few prime candidates that stand out.

"What I'm hearing from Redskins Park, there are already two or three names that they like," Smoot said. "That tells you that Dan has already been working towards it."

Over the past few days, several potential name replacements have surfaced, with the Warriors, Redtails, and Redhawks being the most popular. For Smoot, 'Warriors' would be the easiest transition.

"Me, in my head, Warriors is the one that sticks out the most," Smoot said. "I think it's an easy transition. There are no Warriors in the NFL. It's already a mascot for Golden State, and they've gotten no pushback on it."

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The name 'Warriors' also allows the team to honor Native Americans, something Smoot said Snyder wants to do.

"At the end of the day, besides Warriors, I know Redtails is up there," Smoot said. "But [Synder] said something that stuck out to me: he wants to keep the logo and acknowledge Native Americans, give them something that they're proud of. So that tells me that it won't be Redtails."

While 'Warriors' might be the easiest transition for the franchise, Smoot offered a few of his own suggestions. And they were quite creative.

"If you're going for a total re-brand, you can go Red Wolves," Smoot said. "I've never heard anybody say anything about that. The Wolf is almost a spirit animal for Native Americans. I think the Red Wolves would be one of those things that I heard nobody say that I think would be a great one. I can just see FedEx Field and the 80,000 people just howling like Wolves. That would really be something."

Plus, the cornerback mentioned that Snyder does not want to change the colors or the team's current logo.

"If you get a name like the 'Americans' or 'Red Wolves,' you don't have to change the brand," Smoot said. "Whenever 'Redskins' is, you're just taking the name off. [Snyder] already said he's keeping the colors. He's keeping the logo. Now, it's just changing the name."

RELATED: LIST OF REDSKINS FAN-GENERATED NEW NAMES

Outside of the Red Wolves, Smoot also had a few other...um....out-of-the-box suggestions.

"I have another one that's off the edge, because you know I'm an edgy guy," Smoot said. "This one, you're pretty much going to laugh at. What about the Washington District of Columbia?"

Additionally, Smoot suggested the Redskins could take the mascot of one prominent college athletics program - or also change the name to something that would honor the team's own history.

"If you're going for a total re-brand, there are so many different animals that haven't been used," Smoot said. "We could be the Washington Wolverines. But I don't think [Snyder] wants a total re-brand. I think we could be the Washington Pigskins. Just put the Pig in front of [Skins]. We're already connected to the Hog."

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