Harden ignites Rockets to victory over Clippers

admin   •   November 9, 2015   •   2182

November 7, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) reacts after scoring a basket against Los Angeles Clippers during the second half at Staples Center. Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

November 7, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) reacts after scoring a basket against Los Angeles Clippers during the second half at Staples Center. Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

(The Sports Xchange) – Guard James Harden scored a season-best 46 points to spark the Houston Rockets to a 109-105 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers at the Staples Center on Saturday.

Center Dwight Howard finished with 20 points and 20 rebounds for the Rockets (4-3), who posted their fourth consecutive win. Forward Marcus Thornton chipped in 16 points.

Forward Blake Griffin had 35 points, 11 rebounds and five assists to lead Los Angeles (4-2), which lost its second straight game and played without point guard Chris Paul (sore right groin).

Guard J.J. Redick added 19 points for the Clippers.

Houston played without guard Patrick Beverley (concussion), forward Terrence Jones (right eyelid laceration) and forward-center Donatas Motiejunas (lower back pain).

It was the first meeting between the two clubs since the Rockets upended the Clippers in the Western Conference semi-finals last season by rallying from a 3-1 deficit to prevail in seven games.

Harden made sure the Rockets would carry on the winning run by topping 40 points for the second night in a row.

He scored 43 points and dished out 13 assists in Houston’s 116-110 win over the Kings in Sacramento on Friday and picked up where he left off against the Clippers, scoring 18 points in the opening quarter.

The Rockets snagged their biggest lead, a 93-82 cushion, after a Harden three-pointer less than four minutes into the final quarter but the Clippers pulled to within 105-102 on a layup by Redick and two free throws by Griffin with 1:04 left.

After an offensive foul by Harden with 49.4 seconds left, forward Paul Pierce nailed a three-pointer from the corner to knot the score at 105-105 with 40.9 seconds remaining.

However, Harden converted a pair of foul shots with 32.6 seconds on the clock for a two-point Houston advantage. That turned out to be the difference.

Griffin missed a shot in the lane and a tip with 16.9 seconds left before two free throws by guard Ty Lawson soon after sealed it for Houston.

Clippers center DeAndre Jordan scored 11 points, grabbed 14 rebounds and blocked three shots.

(Compiled by John O’Brien)

Vince Carter retires after NBA record 22-season career

UNTV News   •   June 26, 2020

Atlanta Hawks guard Vince Carter officially announced his retirement from professional basketball on Thursday (June 25) after an NBA record 22-season career during which his high-flying dunks made him one of the game’s top players in his prime.

Carter, widely regarded as one of the greatest dunkers of all time, had previously said the 2019-20 NBA campaign would be his last but had not addressed his playing status since the NBA suspended its season in mid-March due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

“I am officially done playing basketball professionally,” Carter, 43, told the “Winging It” podcast.

Carter, the first NBA player to feature in four different decades, signed a one-year deal with the Hawks last August.

However, their season is over as they did not qualify for the NBA’s 22-team format for restarting action in late July at Disney World amid the novel coronavirus.

Carter played for eight teams during his career but will be most remembered for his time with the Toronto Raptors, where he put the Canadian city on the basketball map and earned the nickname “Air Canada” for his feats above the rim.

After his first season in Toronto, Carter was named the NBA’s rookie of the year in 1999. He was then named an All-Star for each of the following eight seasons.

In his second season, Carter won the Slam Dunk Contest during All-Star Weekend with a dazzling display that further increased his stardom and helped ignite basketball’s popularity in what had otherwise been an ice hockey-mad country.

Carter, who ranks 22nd on the NBA’s all-time scoring list, averaged 16.7 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game during a career that also included stops in New Jersey, Orlando, Phoenix, Dallas, Memphis, Sacramento and Atlanta.

He also helped USA Basketball win gold medals at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and 2003 FIBA Americas tournament. (Reuters)

(Production; David Grip)

League approves plan to resume NBA season in July at Disney World

UNTV News   •   June 5, 2020

REUTERS – The National Basketball Association (NBA) Board of Governors have approved a plan to restart the suspended season with a tentative July 31 start at Disney World, Florida amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the league said on Thursday (June 4).

The plan would see 22 of the NBA’s 30 teams play eight games to determine a 16-team playoff field that would follow the traditional post-season format with four best-of-seven series that would crown a champion no later than October 12.

The league said approval from its Board of Governors, which came on the day originally scheduled for the start of the NBA Finals, is the first formal step among the many required to resume the season.

According to ESPN, the vote on the format was 29-1, with the Portland Trail Blazes voting against the proposal.

All games, practices and housing would be at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex which is inside the Orlando resort and has multiple hotels and arenas, and would allow the league to limit outside exposure.

The NBA was the first North American sports league to suspend its season due to the COVID-19 pandemic after one of its players tested positive for the new coronavirus in mid-March.

The 22 returning teams would be comprised of the eight teams from each of the two conferences currently in playoff positions plus the six clubs that are six games or fewer behind the eighth seed in their respective conferences.

If everything goes according to plan, the NBA said the 2020-21 season would begin on Dec. 1.

The league also said it plans to hold its 2020 NBA Draft Lottery to determine the order of the first 14 selections on Aug. 25. Lottery teams would be comprised of the eight clubs that do not participate in the restart and the six that go to Florida but do not qualify for the playoffs.

The actual NBA Draft, typically held in June, is now scheduled for Oct. 15.

(Production: Kurt Michael Hall)

Jordan’s autographed game-worn sneakers from his rookie season sold for record $560,000

UNTV News   •   May 18, 2020

NBA great Michael Jordan’s autographed game-worn sneakers from his rookie season fetched a record $560,000 (463,380 pounds) in an online auction, Sotheby’s said on Sunday (May 17).

The Air Jordan 1s, designed for Jordan in 1985 and the first ever signature sneakers, were expected to sell for between $100,000 and $150,000 in the auction.

Known for selling multimillion-dollar art, Sotheby’s held its first auction dedicated entirely to sneakers last year and had then set a world record of $437,500 for a pair of 1972 Nike running shoes known as the “Moon Shoe.”

“We saw tremendous bidding up until the moment the sale closed, with the value more than doubling in the final hour alone,” said Brahm Wachter, Sotheby’s director of eCommerce development.

“That coupled with strong international bidding from six countries on four continents shows not only the incredible appeal of Michael Jordan… but also that sneaker collecting is truly a global and growing market.”

Like most of Jordan’s basketball shoes, they are a mismatched pair in a size 13 (left) and size 13.5 (right).

The auction coincided with the 35th anniversary of the Air Jordan brand and the screening of the 10-part ESPN documentary “The Last Dance” about the Chicago Bulls and Jordan. The final two episodes of the show are set to air later on Sunday.

The shoes were sold by collector Jordan Geller, the founder of the sneaker museum Shoezeum in Las Vegas. (Reuters)

(Production: David Grip)

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