Phoenix Suns legendary point guard Chris Paul made history in the team’s 115-105 victory over the Lakers at Staples Center on Friday night.
Coming into the game against the Lakers, Paul needed seven points to become the first player in NBA history to amass 20,000 points and 10,000 assists. The 11-time All-Star, who was also named to the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team this week, hit the milestone with a free throw in the second quarter.
Paul, who finished Friday’s game with 23 points, 14 assists, and five rebounds, was clutching the game ball at the post game press conference after Phoenix’s first victory of the season.
“When you get done playing this game,” Paul said. “Sometimes, you want to have things(game ball) to remember things. I’m going to keep this for sure.”
‘The first player ever,” Suns’ Devin Booker interjected. “That’s the crazy part about it… It’s inspiring, and I tell him daily, I was a fan before we were teammates, so I give him his flowers daily, and he deserves that. I think a lot of people wait until somebody retires or wait until their career is over to tell them certain type things. I get to say that often to him; that’s inspiring.”
The closest players to the 20,000 points and 10,000 assists mark were John Stockton(289 points short), Oscar Robertson(113 assists short), and Gary Payton(1034 assists short). Among active players, LeBron James(294 assists short) could get there this season, and Russell Westbrook(1926 assists short) may get there soon.
Paul is a fantastic player and arguably one of the greatest point guards in NBA history. At age 36, he’s showing no signs of slowing down.
Phoenix travels to Portland to battle the Trailblazers on Saturday night.
Watch below as Paul and Booker react to Paul’s record and the team’s first victory of the season:
Jacksonville Jaguars K Matthew Wright has been named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week, the league announced today.
Wright is the 12th player in franchise history to win AFC Special Teams Player of the Week and the first to do so since 2019.
In the Jaguars’ Week 6 victory against the Dolphins in London, the 25-year-old Wright connected on both of his extra point attempts and all three of his field goal attempts from 40, 54 and 53 yards in his sixth career game.
With 3:40 remaining in the fourth quarter and the Jaguars trailing by three, Wright drilled a career-long, 54-yard field goal to knot the game at 20. Wright followed with a game-winning, 53-yard field goal as time expired to become the first kicker in NFL history to make multiple field goals of 50-plus yards in the last 4 minutes of the fourth quarter in a single game.
In addition, he became the first kicker in franchise history to connect on two-50-plus yard field goals in the fourth quarter of a single game.
Because of Wright’s performance on Sunday, Jacksonville released K Josh Lambo on Tuesday. The 30-year-old Lambo has been with the Jaguars since 2017.
WBC and lineal heavyweight world champion Tyson “The Gypsy King” Fury and former heavyweight world champion Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder previewed their highly anticipated heavyweight title trilogy showdown at the final press conference Wednesday before they step in the ring this Saturday, October 9 live on ESPN+ PPV and FOX Sports PPV from T-Mobile Arena.
Face to face for the first time since originally announcing the trilogy showdown in June, Fury and Wilder exchanged words during the heated press conference, rehashing the numerous dramatic twists and turns that have made up their rivalry, while promising to end their feud in the ring on Saturday.
Here is what Fury and Wilder had to say on Wednesday:
“I’ve just been training and taking it day by day. All we can do is live one day at a time. Every day that we wake up is a blessed day.
“All these fights are exactly the same to me. Some guy is trying to take my head off. No matter who it may be, they don’t matter to me. It’s the Tyson Fury road show and it has continued for 13 years.
“Wilder is a weak person mentally and I’m going to knock him out on Saturday night. I obliterated him in the rematch and I see much more of the same in the third fight.
“I’m the last man standing between me, Deontay and Anthony
Joshua. I’m the last one undefeated. I’m the two-time heavyweight champion and I’ve never lost a fight. That’s history.
“Me and Sugarhill go back to like 2010 in Detroit. We have a great bond going. To have any successful relationship,
you have to have good communication. We’ve got that. We just gel together.
“It’s not easy for me to pick a trainer because I’m outspoken and do outlandish things. I have to have someone on the same wavelength to match that and I’ve definitely found a match with Sugarhill.
“He says he wants to do bad things to me and that he’s got all this anger and aggression. Those who hold hot coals with aggression are the ones who get burned. He knows he’s lost twice and that he’s going to lose the third time.
“He’s in denial and he’s getting knocked out. His legacy is in bits. I knocked him out and now I’m going to retire him.”
“I don’t have anything to prove. I’m in a great place and in a great state of mind. I have a lot of great people around me. This fight is about
redemption, retaliation and retribution.
“We’ve been going from day one since the last fight. There’s been no stop. The delays have been beneficial for us. One thing about this camp, is that I’ve had all of my brothers around me who’ve been with me from the start.
“Many people thought I was down and out, but it wouldn’t be fair to the people around me to feel that way. My dedication has been focused every day.
“Over training is a real thing and we’ve been able to take small breaks at certain times before getting back at it. Everything has been good and timed out perfectly.
“Saturday night is going to be a different fight. It’s rare that we get trilogies like this and I truly believe this one is going down in history.
“It’s only made me better as a man and as a fighter to see certain things that happened in the second fight. It’s made me even hungrier than before. I needed everything that happened in that fight. It was really a blessing in disguise.
“I have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Your legacy only dies when the desire for the sport dies. I’m well alive right now.
“My energy is like my mind, it’s very violent. I’m just ready to go October 9. I’ve dedicated myself and devoted my time and my body, me and my team, to reinventing myself. I’m ready to reintroduce myself to the world.
“Get ready for war. This is going to be an amazing fight on Saturday night. I’m wearing my red outfit because I want it back in blood. I’m looking forward to it.”
Photo: Ryan Hafey/Premier Boxing Champions
The first two weeks of the season, the Philadelphia Eagles defense was playing excellent football. In Week 1 against the Falcons, Philadelphia held Atlanta to six points, and in Week 2 versus the 49ers, the Eagles held San Francisco to 17 points.
However, the last two weeks have not been very memorable for Philly’s defense. They have given up 77 points in the previous two weeks, including 42 against the Chiefs last Sunday. Additionally, they have had a difficult time stopping the run. In the last two weeks, the Eagles have given up 360 yards on the ground. Currently, Philly is 31st against the run.
When the defense falters, fingers get pointed at the defensive coordinator, which is Jonathan Gannon,
“Yeah, I would think — we always first look at the coaches,” Gannon said at a press conference on Tuesday. “You know, when we come in on Monday, critically, how can we help our players a little bit more to put them in better position to win the game.
“I think we’re all pissed off about the last two games. We haven’t played great on defense. That’s evident. And that starts with me and starts with the coaches.
“So it always comes down to self-evaluation, ‘Hey, what can we do to help our players? What did we say the three things are to win this game? Did we get those three things done?'”
According to Gannon, he’s running out of patience with himself.
“My level of patience, it’s wearing thin on myself,” he said. “‘Hey, Jonathan, let’s get them in better position, so we give our team a chance to win the game.’ It’s not really towards getting irritated at the players. That’s how I’ll always roll; that’s how the coaches roll. So, when we came in here on Monday and sat down, I talked to the head coach on Sunday, on Monday morning, and then we’ll talk to him tonight.
“And the patience for me is wearing thin, ‘Hey, let’s get competitive. Let’s get in a game.’ Because right now, we haven’t been in a game — I know we were in that game, but from a defensive standpoint, like, we got to keep the points down, keep the yards down, get off the field to give our team a chance to win.
So, where I’m most non-cool, calm, and collected right now is not with the players; it’s with myself.”
Gannon is taking the blame, but it’s deeper than him. It’s a talent issue. The linebackers are very average; the secondary is not much better, and the defensive line is missing a big piece in Brandon Graham. The defense is probably not as bad as we’ve seen in the last two weeks, but it’s probably not as good as we’ve seen in Weeks 1 and 2.
Gannon and company have a lot of work to do to get this defense turned around.
Conor Benn has put his Fight Camp disappointment behind him and is now fully focused on stealing the show when he defends his WBA Continental Welterweight Title against Adrian Granados at Emerald Headingley Stadium in Leeds this Saturday September 4, shown live worldwide on DAZN.
‘The Destroyer’ was set to headline the first Matchroom Fight Camp event last month before a positive COVID-19 test forced the Essex native to pull out of his clash with Mexican-American Granados on the Thursday of fight week.
Benn, a face of the British boxing future, upped his stock in a major way after a first-round destruction of Samuel Vargas in April to improve to 18-0 with 12 knockouts, and the surging 24-year-old knows that another standout victory will push him a step closer to a World Title shot in the 147lbs division.
“I was devastated,” admitted Benn. “I went home half not believing it. We did around eight tests. I was absolutely devastated. I worked extremely hard and had a blinding camp. It honestly pained me so much – I even shed a few tears. I’m going to go through adversity again. It’s just how you react to it. What’s for me won’t pass me, so come September 4 in front of 20,000 I’ll put on a show.
“I was quite worried about long Covid. A few people messaged me saying not to train too hard too soon. When I broke my jaw, and I had my first sparring session back, people were saying, ‘you’re going to be a bit hesitant’, and I thought, ‘no I’m not’. If it goes it goes. If my jaw goes it goes. I’m not going to have that at the back of my head.
“That was my mindset with training. When I was doing my sprints on the steps down at Leigh-on-Sea, how am I hitting my PB after Covid? How am I hitting my PB for a 5 miler? I’m not going to say it’s all been heaven because a lot of people have been affected by COVID, but I’m blessed to have made a full recovery in time for this huge show.
“I don’t have a message for Granados. I don’t. There is nothing to say. I let my fists do the talking. Everything that has been said from both parties has been said now. At the end of the day the promo is done. All that’s left to do now is fight, and come September 4 he is in for one hell of a fight. I know he’s going to bring it – but that gets me going. Let’s have it!
“He’s a tough durable guy, the only person to stop him is Danny Garcia. He won the fight against Adrian Broner. He gave hell to Shawn Porter. He fought Robert Easter Jr. He’s been in with the top boys, but he’s in with another top boy. I just want to fight now. I just want to get in there now.
“Vargas he’s going, ‘well yeah, you’re not Khan, you’re not Vergil Ortiz, you’re not Errol Spence, you’re not Danny Garcia’, nah I’m Conor Benn mate. That’s my approach – if they don’t want to put respect on my name then I’ll make them put respect on my name. At the end of the day I’m up for a hard fight, but I’ve got his number on my worst day.”
Benn vs. Granados is part of a huge night of action in Leeds, Mauricio Lara (23-2, 16 KOs) and Josh Warrington (30-1, 7 KOs) face each other again in a huge rematch for the Featherweight division, Undisp
uted Lightweight ruler Katie Taylor (18-0, 6 KOs) defends her WBC, WBA, IBF, WBO and Ring Magazine crowns against her latest Mandatory Challenger Jennifer Han (18-3- 1, 1 KOs), Mexico’s Jovanni Straffon (24-3-1, 17 KOs) makes the first defence of his IBO Lightweight World Title against the in-form Maxi Hughes (23-5-2, 5 KOs), Australia’s Ebanie Bridges (6-1, 3 KOs) looks to build on her impressive KO win over Bec Connolly at Fight Camp earlier this month when she meets Mailys Gangloff (5-2, 2 KOs), Super-Bantamweight prospect Hopey Price (5-0, 1 KO) steps up against Zahid Hussain (16-1, 2 KOs) in an all-Leeds clash, undefeated Super-Bantamweight talent Jack Bateson (13-0, 3 KOs) clashes with Felix Garcia (7-2-1, 3 KOs) over six rounds, 1-0 Super-Welterweight Brandon Stansfield takes on MJ Hall (2-61-2) and Light-Heavyweight Mali Wright makes his pro debut against Anthony Woolery (2-6).
The Washington Football Team handled the last preseason game like the last preseason game. Head coach Ron Rivera sat all of the starters on Saturday at FedExField, and ultimately, Washington would fall to the Ravens 37-3.
“Not to get anybody hurt,” Rivera said about why he rested his starters. “It was something we decided on a few days ago. We didn’t want to get anybody hurt. We had a big camp, it’s been successful, and a lot of guys worked. A lot of people we feel really comfortable and confident in who they are for us. We just felt exposing is not the thing to do, so we didn’t expose them.”
Conversely, Baltimore played many of its starters, but not for long, including quarterback Lamar Jackson, who saw his first preseason action on Saturday and played one series.
According to Jackson, he was happy to be out there against Washington.
“Yeah, just to get my feet wet for the regular season,” Jackson said. “I’ve got to feel that contact, that real contact because you know guys in practice aren’t hitting me or anything like that. It was great to get my feet wet.”
For Baltimore, the concern is running back J.K Dobbins, who left the game in the first quarter with a knee injury. According to Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, Dobbins will undergo testing on Sunday.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the expectation is that Dobbins had suffered a season-ending knee injury.
Jackson hopes everything will be okay with Dobbins, but he has confidence in the other backs on the team.
“Hopefully, we don’t miss him. He’s a tremendous back,” Jackson said. “We have Gus [Edwards], and we’ve got Ty [Ty’son Williams], but hopefully, he’s good.”
Baltimore got a big-time performance from third-string quarterback Tyler Huntley, who threw for 285 yards and four touchdowns against Washington.
With the win against Washington, Baltimore won an NFL record 20th straight preseason game. The last time Baltimore lost a preseason game was in 2015.
“I just think it’s really cool for the guys,” Harbaugh said about winning 20 straight preseason games. “I’ll tell you this; there’s a lot of guys watching on TV with their kids, telling their kids about that accomplishment and the fact that they were a part of that. That’s the most meaningful thing. I think there are other aspects of it, but to me, that’s the thing that means the most.”
It’s time to prepare for the regular season. Washington hosts the Chargers in Week 1, while the Ravens go on the road to play the Raiders on Monday Night Football.
On Saturday night, eight-division world champion Manny Pacquiao lost by unanimous decision to WBA 147-pound champion Yordenis Ugas at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
The 42-year-old Pacquiao was supposed to fight unified welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr., but he had to withdraw due to an eye injury.
Throughout the fight on Saturday night, Pacquiao had a hard time getting out of the way of Ugas’ jab and right hand.
While some were stunned by the result, the great Roy Jones Jr. was not.
“It’s what I expected,” Jones said about Ugas’ win. “Pacquiao is not as young as he used to be. If you don’t have legs, you are not going to beat Ugas. Ugas is a very good fighter, a very smart fighter, a very experienced amateur fighter, and a very experienced pro fighter.
“So, I knew going in, in my opinion, Ugas was going to be a harder fighter than Spence because Spence was going to come right at him… A guy that could box him and use his jab like Ugas did would create more of a problem, and that’s what happened.”
Jones does not think Pacquiao is done, but he believes his team should be smarter with the matchmaking going forward.
Watch below as Jones talks Pacquiao, Spence’s injured eye, and his induction into the Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame.
Jones was on hand in Atlantic City for Sunday’s fifth annual ACBHOF induction ceremony at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
Here is a list of the other individuals inducted into ACBHOF on Sunday:
Riddick Bowe, Pernell Whitaker, Al Cole, Ernest Bing, Tony Thornton, Sr., Calvin Grove, Percy Richardson, Tommy Parks, Earl Morton, Steve Weisfeld, Ron Katz, Murad Muhammad, Marc Abrams, Al Bernstein, and Ms. Laoma Byrd. Felix Trinidad, Kelly Pavlik, Simon Brown, Ivan Robinson, Aaron Snowell, Joey Eye, Frank Cappuccino, Ed Keenan, and Nino Delbuno.
For more information about the ACBHOF, go to www.acbhof.com.
Photo: Ryan Hafey/Premier Boxing Champions