Blue Coats remain undefeated after defeating Long Island

The Delaware Blue Coats (6-0), the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, defeated the Long Island Nets (2-4), 130-127, on Friday night at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Florida. The Blue Coats made a G League season-high 21 three-pointers (14 in the first half) for the second straight game and remain the league’s only unbeaten team.

Jared Brownridge paced the Blue Coats with a game-high 29 points (9-13 FG, 7-11 3FG, 2-3 FT) in 33 minutes off the bench. His seven three-pointers are tied for the most in a single G League game this season. 76ers two-way contract player Paul Reed delivered his sixth consecutive double-double to begin the season with 23 points (9-12 FG, 3-3 3FG, 1-1 FT), 10 rebounds, two steals and three blocks in 26 minutes before fouling out.

Jordan Bone came off the Delaware bench to score 21 points on 6-13 shooting from the field, 3-5 from three-point range and a perfect 5-5 from the free-throw line. 76ers two-way contract player Rayjon Tucker tallied 18 points (6-10 FG, 2-4 3FG, 2-2 FT), three rebounds and a game-high-tying seven assists in 33 minutes as a starter.

Six Blue Coats scored in double figures for the third straight game. Defensively, they recorded a season-high 10 blocked shots. Justin Robinson and Ivan Rabb joined Reed with three blocked shots each.

Long Island also had three players post 20-plus points, led by Jeremiah Martin’s 25 points (9-16 FG, 1-2 3FG, 3-3 FT), eight rebounds and game-high-tying seven assists. Brooklyn Nets two-way contract player Reggie Perry notched a double-double with 24 points and a game-high 11 rebounds in a team-high 33 minutes. BJ Johnson scored 15 of his 22 points in the second half.

The Blue Coats shot .622 (28-45) from the field and .667 (14-21) from three-point range in the first half en route to a 76-57 halftime lead. The Nets later outscored Delaware 37-24 in the fourth quarter.

UP NEXT: The Blue Coats will take on the Austin Spurs on Sunday at 7 p.m. ET. The Spurs are 5-1 heading into their Saturday night matchup against the Westchester Knicks. The Delaware-Austin game on Sunday can be seen locally on DETV Channel 28 and heard on Rowan Radio 89.7 WGLS-FM.

Photo: Chris Marion (NBAE via Getty Images)

Isaiah Thomas on playing in NBA: ‘The world knows I got what it takes’

NBA free agent Isaiah Thomas led the way for Team USA with 19 points on Friday night as they defeated the Bahamas 93-77 in FIBA AmeriCup in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The game was the USA’s fifth in FIBA AmeriCup Qualifying play, which the USA will close out against Mexico tomorrow, Feb. 20, at 5 p.m. EST (live on ESPN+).

The 32-year-old Thomas, who played last season with the Wizards, is looking to use these games with Team USA to show teams in the NBA that he can still get it done. After the game, Thomas, who also had six turnovers, discussed his performance.

“I think I played okay. I mean, I’m my biggest critic,” Thomas said. “I felt like I could have done so much more. But you know, I was in foul trouble a little bit. The turnovers are way too high, so I got to limit those. But I’m also getting used to that new ball. I’ve been playing with one ball for the last 10 years. So, it’s a little different, but I just have to adjust, continue to stay aggressive, continue to make plays, and, like I said, most importantly, it’s about getting the win.”

Health has been an issue for Thomas over the years. Thomas dealt with a hip issue, but according to the two-time All-Star, he’s healthy and can help an NBA team.

“The world knows I got what it takes,” Thomas said. “So, it’s just about showing that I’m healthy. My skill didn’t go anywhere. It was just about getting 100% healthy, which I am right now. So, this is definitely a showcase for me, not just for myself, but for, you know, everybody on this team to showcase that, you know, they can play and be able to get jobs around the world. So, you know, individually. Yes, I’m showing that, you know, I’m 100% healthy. I’m moving and I’m myself.”

It was good to see Thomas back on the court, and hopefully, he can get another shot in the league.

Teams will continue to play games in the FIBA AmeriCup Qualifying final window through Feb. 21, after which the top three teams from each of the four groups will earn a berth into the FIBA AmeriCup 2022. With five wins, the USA is assured of its berth into the FIBA AmeriCup 2022, which will serve to qualify teams from the Americas zone for the 2024 Olympic Games.

Photo: FIBA AmeriCup

Sexton is confident that Cleveland can be successful on their west coast trip

The Los Angeles Clippers(17-6) are a championship-caliber team and have hopes of winning an NBA title this season, and at this point, the Cleveland Cavaliers(10-12) are a team that is looking to grow. The difference in where these teams are in terms of development was on full display on Wednesday night.

L.A.’s two stars came up big. Paul George was 13/20 from the field, including 8/9 from three-point land, and finished with 35 points, and Kawhi Leonard added 24 as the Clippers defeated the Cavs 121-99 at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.

Cleveland trailed 52-49 at the half, but George went off in the third quarter. He scored 15 points, including four threes, and before you knew it, Cleveland trailed by 14 at the end of third quarter. While Cavs head coach J.B. Bickerstaff felt his team could have played better defensively, he had to give George credit.

“I think we did give up too many uncontested threes in the second half and give Paul George a lot of credit; he made a lot of contested threes in that half as well.”

The Clippers lost to the Nets on Tuesday night, so Bickerstaff knew that Cleveland was going to get the Clippers’ best effort.

“Very good team(Clippers), there’s no doubt about that,” Bickerstaff said. “Coming off a loss, they were going to come out and give us their best shot, and we didn’t defend the three-point line well enough to give ourselves a shot. On the offensive end, we didn’t generate enough threes to give ourselves an opportunity either.” 

Cleveland now has a tough stretch coming up. They have a two-game set at home against the Bucks, and then they head out West for a five-game road trip, which includes games against the Suns, Clippers, and Nuggets. According to Collin Sexton, who led Cleveland with 27 points against the Clippers, the Cavaliers have what it takes to succeed.

“We got a tough stretch of games coming up. We just gotta make sure we win them. We gotta make sure we go (get) these next two and just try to get both them. We got a nice little set of games on the west coast. We just gotta make sure we get each and every game that we can… We definitely have a good stretch of games, but I feel like they are very capable games that we can win.”

Boban on Mavs’ loss to Rockets: ‘I think we looked like a team that is not energized’

On Saturday, the Dallas Mavericks(8-8) appeared to be a tired team against the Rockets(6-9). Dallas trailed by as much as 16 points in the first quarter and trailed by 11 at the break.

The Mavericks would make a run in the third quarter and cut the lead to three, but Houston would dominate from there and push the lead to 21, and Dallas would fall to the Rockets at home 133-108.

DeMarcus Cousins led Houston with 28 points, 17 rebounds, and 5 assists. This was his second double-double of the season, and Eric Gordon contributed 33 points, 3 rebounds, and 3 assists. Luka Doncic had a team-high 26 points for the Mavericks.

Dallas was on the second night of a back-to-back, and their game against the Rockets was the fifth game in seven nights for Dallas, but that was no excuse, according to Mavs head coach Rick Carlisle.

“We don’t have any excuses,” Carlisle said. “Didn’t play well enough. The energy was a factor. We were able to get it up in spurts, but we weren’t able to sustain. They had more juice. We obviously miss KP [Kristaps Porzingis] and the other four guys, but everybody is going through something right now. Houston is missing a couple of their good players, too. We’re off tomorrow. We need a restful day tomorrow, and then it’s another busy week next week.”

Again, Dallas was without Maxi Kleber, Dorian Finney-Smith, Dwight Powell, and Josh Richardson due to health and safety protocols. Also, they were without Kristaps Porzingis due to rest. 

Mavericks center Boban Marjanovic, who had 15 points and 12 rebounds on Saturday night, felt the team did not have enough energy against the Rockets.

“I think we looked like a team that is not energized,” Marjanovic said. “I feel that because the schedule was so tough, with back-to-back games and being on the road, we come back here, and then we go back on the road… We expect the guys back as soon as possible, and we need to continue to play how we know how to play.”

Based on the schedule, we will continue to see games like this in the NBA, where teams look sluggish, and teams just look very bad. It happens, and now Dallas has to regroup and play four games in seven days, starting on Monday at home against Denver.

Cavs’ Garland on loss to Pacers: ‘We just have to start the game with more energy’

For the Cavaliers, the first quarter has been an issue in the last two games. Against the Knicks on Tuesday night, Cleveland trailed by 14 after one and could not recover, and on Thursday afternoon against the Pacers, the Cavaliers trailed by 11 after one. It was an uphill battle the rest of the way, as Indiana(4-1) defeated Cleveland(3-2) 118-99 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Domantas Sabonis led the way for Indiana with a team-high 25 points and 11 rebounds.

This was Cleveland’s first game of a six-game road trip, which continues on Saturday in Atlanta against the Hawks. In their three wins, Cleveland had the lead or was tied after the first quarter. However, in their two losses, they have trailed by double digits after the opening stanza. Cleveland has been outscored by 25 points in the past two games in the first quarter.

“In these last two games, we’ve allowed the first quarters to impact us throughout the game,” Cavaliers head coach J.B. Bickerstaff said after the game. “Again, you go back and look at it. We had open shots; we had shots that we didn’t take, and we had bunnies at the rim that we didn’t finish. That carried over into other things.” 

Collin Sexton, who had a game-high 28 points against Indiana, felt the team was not playing together in that first quarter.

“First quarter, I felt like the offense got stagnant. We wasn’t going by our principles, and that’s sharing the ball and feeding the post… We wasn’t playing together. That’s first and foremost. We wasn’t playing together. You can tell. Everybody was like, ‘swing, swing.’. Passing up open shots. We need guys to shoot those open shots every time.”

Darius Garland, who poured in 22 points, including 5-7 from three-point range, believes the team has to come out with more energy.

“We just have to start the game with more energy, set the tone,” he said. “We were on our heels a lot at the end of the first half of the game… We just got to start the game better. That’s all.”

After the game, Bickerstaff kept the team in the locker room a little longer than usual, and he explained why.

“Things are easy when things are good. Things become a little more difficult when things are hard, and our response to that is important,” he said. “We just wanted to have a discussion about that, about the grit we need to play with all the time, about the confidence we need to play with all the time, and believing in what we are doing and believing in ourselves through the good times and bad times.”

Cleveland has a young basketball team, and unfortunately, what comes with that is inconsistency. The Cavaliers have to get back to what made them successful, sharing the ball, creating turnovers, and making open shots. We’ll see if that back to that against the Hawks on Saturday. 

Notes:

Andre Drummond recorded his fifth straight double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds.

 

 

 

 

Derrick White signs extension with Spurs

The San Antonio Spurs have signed guard Derrick White to a contract extension, the team announced on Monday.

According to ESPN’s, Adrian Wojnarowski, it’s a four-year, $73M extension.

White is a guy who the Spurs will count on to get the team back into contention and a player who has grown his game since coming to the league. The 26-year-old White posted a career-high 11.3 points along with 3.5 assists and 3.3 rebounds in 24.7 minutes last season while ranking second among all NBA guards in total blocks (59) and second in the league in charges drawn (30).

White played very well during the NBA Restart in Orlando. In seven games, White averaged 18.9 points, 5.0 assists, and 4.3 rebounds in 29.8 minutes while shooting 39.3 percent from three-point range on 8.0 attempts per game. 

For his NBA career, White has appeared in 152 NBA games, averaging 9.8 points, 3.4 assists, and 3.3 rebounds in 23.3 minutes while shooting 46.9 percent from the field and 36.4 percent from long range.

Entering his fourth season with San Antonio, White was also a member of the USA Men’sMen’s National Team at the 2019 FIBA World Cup. San Antonio originally selected White in the first round of the 2017 NBA Draft (29th overall).

Clippers announced first half of 2020-21 schedule

The LA Clippers will tip off the 2020-21 season on Tuesday, Dec. 22 at 7:00 p.m. PT at the Los Angeles Lakers on the NBA’s Opening Night, and have released their first half schedule.

The Clippers’ second game of the season will be at the Denver Nuggets on Christmas Day at 7:30 p.m. PT on ESPN and Prime Ticket/FOX Sports San Diego, and then the team will return to Los Angeles to take on the Dallas Mavericks, Minnesota Timberwolves and Portland Trail Blazers. The first half of the season includes six back-to-backs for the Clippers, and wraps up on Thursday, March 4 at the Washington Wizards.

During the 2020-21 season, the Clippers will play each Western Conference opponent three times, and each Eastern Conference opponent twice. The Clippers announced their three preseason games last week, with the first on Friday, December 11 at the Los Angeles Lakers. All three will air on Prime Ticket/FOX Sports San Diego.

Prime Ticket/FOX Sports San Diego will televise all Clippers games not airing exclusively on TNT, ESPN or ABC. Additionally, all games airing on the regional sports networks will be available for live streaming via the FOX Sports GO app and FOXSportsGO.com, with Clippers CourtVision powered by AWS available there for regular season games. All games will air on the radio on AM 570 L.A. Sports and in Spanish on 1330 AM – Tu Liga Radio.

The LA Clippers’ game and broadcast schedule is available here.

Philadelphia trades Josh Richardson to Mavericks for Seth Curry

The Philadelphia 76ers and new president of basketball operations Daryl Morey were very busy on draft day in the NBA. According to reports, the team will send Al Horford and picks to the Thunder for Danny Green. On draft night, Philly sent Josh Richardson and the draft rights to Tyler Bey, the 36th overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, to the Mavericks in exchange for guard Seth Curry.

With Richardson, the Mavericks get an athletic guard who can score a little bit and defend. The 27-year-old Richardson averaged 13.7 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 2.9 assists in 55 games (53 starts). Richardson played four seasons in Miami before being dealt to Philadelphia as part of a four-team deal last summer. The five-year can opt out of his contract at season’s end.

The 76ers get shooting with Curry, and the six-year guard gets to play for his father-in-law, Doc Rivers. Curry is married to Rivers’ daughter, Callie. Last season, the 30-year-old Curry averaged 12.4 points, 2.3 rebounds, and 1.9 assists in 64 games in his second stint with the Mavericks, and more importantly for the 76ers, Curry shot 45% from three-point land.

Philadelphia is looking to reshape their roster, and you wonder if there are more moves to be made. To be able to unload the 34-year-old Horford, who signed with Philadelphia last offseason and had three-years, $81 million left on his contract, is incredible. If there was any contract that seemed unmovable, it was Horford’s deal with the 76ers. While it cost him picks, Morey got it done. We’ll see what’s next in Philadelphia, but you get the sense that Morey is not finished remaking this team.

 

Clippers’ Harrell wins Sixth Man of the Year

LA Clippers forward Montrezl Harrell has been named the 2019-20 NBA Kia Sixth Man of the Year, the league announced today. This marks the third straight year and the fifth time overall that a Clippers player has won the award, which is the most for a franchise in NBA History.

Harrell, who was named a finalist for the award last year, averaged career-highs in points (18.6) and rebounds (7.1) this season, while also leading the league with the most double-doubles off the bench (11) and tying for the most 30+ point games off the bench (4). Harrell and teammate Lou Williams, fellow Sixth Man of the Year finalist and three-time Sixth Man of the Year award winner, became the first duo since the NBA started designating starters in 1970-71 to each average 17+ points per game off the bench. Harrell also ranked second in the NBA in bench scoring (18.4 points per game) and tied for fourth in the NBA in field goal percentage (min. 600 FGA, 58.0%).

The Clippers finished the 2019-20 regular season with a 49-23 (.681) record and earned the second seed in the Western Conference Playoffs. The NBA Kia Sixth Man of the Year award is voted on by a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters based on games played from the start of the regular season through March 11 and did not include “seeding games,” which took place from July 30 – August 14.

Listen to Go4it! Guest: Phoenix Suns PG Cam Payne

We will be talking sports and having fun doing it. We were joined by Phoenix Suns PG Cam Payne who talked the following:

-Jamal Murray-Donovan Mitchell

-OKC-Rockets-His time with his Suns in the bubble

-Devin Booker-Suns’ chances of making the playoffs next season

-Russell Westbrook triple-double season, his dance with Westbrook

-Life in the bubble

-Social Justice

-Thunder losing to Warriors in WCF after being up 3-1

-COVID-19

-What Payne needs to do to stay consistent

Watch interview here:

Listen to interview here:

iheart.comwww.iheart.com/podcast/269-go4it-29963632/

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