Norvel Pelle leads Blue Coats to victory

The Delaware Blue Coats (6-4), the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, defeated Raptors 905 (3-5), 115-106, on Tuesday night at 76ers Fieldhouse for the team’s third-straight victory. In his fifth game with the Blue Coats, 76ers two-way contract player Norvel Pelle notched his third double-double of the season with 20 points (9-14 fg, 1-2 ft), a season-high-tying 14 rebounds and 2 blocked shots in 27 minutes of action.

Six Blue Coats players scored in double figures for the fourth time this season. Zhaire Smith, on assignment from the 76ers, tallied a season-high-tying 18 points (8-13 fg, 1-2 3fg, 1-1 ft) and added five rebounds in 31 minutes. 76ers two-way contract player Marial Shayok posted 16 points (5-13 fg, 2-5 3fg, 3-3 ft), six rebounds and two assists in 28 minutes off the bench for Delaware, while Christ Koumadje added a season-high 12 points (5-6 fg, 1-1 ft) to go along with four rebounds and three blocks in 15 minutes as a reserve.

Delaware led 54-49 at halftime and is now a perfect 5-0 overall when leading at the break.

The 905 also saw six players reach double figures scoring. Dewan Hernandez, on assignment from Toronto, posted a game-high 22 points (10-17 fg, 2-3 ft) with eight rebounds in 27 minutes. Raptors two-way contract player Shamorie Ponds came off the bench and scored 17 of his 19 points (6-15 fg, 2-7 3fg, 2-2 ft) in the second half. Justin Anderson (4-15 fg, 3-10 3fg, 4-5 ft) and Raptors two-way contract player Oshae Brissett (7-25 fg, 1-9 3fg, 1-2 ft) each contributed 17 points in the loss, with Brissett adding 11 rebounds in 27 minutes to secure his first career double-double.

The Blue Coats will host the Capital City Go-Go on Friday night at 7:00 p.m. at 76ers Fieldhouse.

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Dončić named Western Conference Player of the Month

The NBA announced today that Mavericks guard Luka Dončić was named the Kia NBA Western Conference Player of the Month for games played in October/November. The 20-year-old becomes the first Maverick to garner the award since Dirk Nowitzki in April 2009. He also becomes the youngest Western Conference Player of the Month winner since the league began issuing the award by conference in 2001-02.

Dončić (6-7, 230) has led the Mavericks to a 13-6 (.684) start in 2019-20 with averages of 30.6 points, 9.9 rebounds, 9.6 assists and 1.53 steals per game (all team highs). The second-year Slovenian has recorded a league-high seven triple-doubles this season. He also ranks third in the league in scoring (30.6 ppg), second in assists (9.6 apg), 15th in rebounding (9.9 rpg) and tied for 12th in steals (1.53 spg).

This marks the eighth time in franchise history that a Maverick has won Player of the Month honors. Nowitzki was the sole recipient of the award five times in his career (for December 2004, February 2005, December 2005, February 2007 and April 2009) and also shared the honor with Michael Finley and Steve Nash in November 2002. Aguirre was the first Maverick ever to take home the award, winning it for January 1984. Dončić becomes the first Dallas player under 24 to win the award (Aguirre and Nowitzki were both 24 when they first won it).

Dončić has scored at least 20 points in 18 of Dallas’ first 19 games this season, including 25-plus points 16 times, 30-plus points 10 times and 40-plus points on three occasions (the Mavericks are a perfect 3-0 this year when he goes for 40-or-more points).

The reigning Kia NBA Rookie of the Year is currently riding a streak of 15 consecutive games with at least 20 points, five rebounds and five assists, which is tied for the fourth-longest such streak since the ABA-NBA merger in 1976-77 (LeBron James also went for 20-5-5 in 15 straight games in 2017-18). Michael Jordan (18 games in 1988-89) has recorded the longest 20-5-5 streak since the merger, while Russell Westbrook (17 games in 2014-15 and 16 games in 2017-18) has posted the second and third-longest such streaks.

In 14 games in November, Dončić averaged 32.4 points, 10.3 rebounds and 10.4 assists per game en route to becoming just the third player in NBA history to average a 30-point triple-double over any calendar month (minimum 10 games played). Oscar Robertson (5 times) and Westbrook (twice) also achieved the feat. In fact, Dončić became only the fifth player in league history to even average a triple-double during any calendar month, along with Westbrook (8 times), Robertson (7 times), Wilt Chamberlain (twice) and James (once).

The former EuroLeague MVP was named Western Conference Player of the Week for games played from Monday, Nov. 18 through Sunday, Nov. 24, 2019, after he led the Mavericks to a perfect 4-0 week with averages of 37.0 points, 8.5 rebounds and 11.8 assists per game and victories over San Antonio (Nov. 18), Golden State (Nov. 20), Cleveland (Nov. 22) and Houston (Nov. 24). He produced at least 30 points and 10 assists in all four games, becoming the youngest player in NBA history (20 years, 269 days) to record four consecutive 30-point, 10-assist efforts. He also led the Mavericks to their first five-game win streak (Nov. 16 to Nov. 24, 2019) since 2016.

Dončić recorded three 40-point, 10-assist outings within a span of six games from Nov. 18 to Nov. 29. He tallied a career-high 42 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds vs. San Antonio (Nov. 18), 41 points, 10 assists and six rebounds at Houston (Nov. 24), and a career-high-tying 42 points, 11 assists and nine boards at Phoenix (Nov 29). The 6-7 guard has more 40-point, 10-assist games (3) than the rest of the NBA combined (2) this season.

Dončić named Western Conference Player of the Week

The NBA announced today that Mavericks guard/forward Luka Dončić was named Western Conference Player of the Week for games played from Monday, Nov. 18 through Sunday, Nov. 24, marking the first time in his career that he has received the honor.

Dončić (6-7, 230) led the Mavericks to a perfect 4-0 week with averages of 37.0 points (.554 FG%, .444 3FG%, .788 FT%), 8.5 rebounds and 11.8 assists per game and victories over San Antonio (Nov. 18), Golden State (Nov. 20), Cleveland (Nov. 22) and Houston (Nov. 24). He posted at least 30 points and 10 assists in all four games, becoming the youngest player in NBA history (20 years, 269 days) to record four consecutive 30-point, 10-assist efforts (the previous youngest was Oscar Robertson at 22 years, 34 days). He also led all players outright in scoring all in four games and led the Mavericks outright in assists in all four.

The reigning NBA Rookie of the Year becomes the first Maverick to garner Player of the Week honors since Jose Juan Barea in 2016 (Barea won the award for games played from 3/28-4/3/16). He also becomes the 13th different Maverick to win the award, joining Jay Vincent, Mark Aguirre, Roy Tarpley, Jamal Mashburn, Jason Kidd, Michael Finley, Steve Nash, Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Terry, Josh Howard, Monta Ellis and Barea.

Dončić began the week by becoming the second-youngest player in NBA history (20 years, 263 days) to record a 40-point triple-double after posting a career-high 42 points to go along with 11 rebounds and 12 assists in a 117-110 win over the Spurs (11/18/19). He followed up that performance by registering a 35-point triple-double (35 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists) in just 25 minutes and 30 seconds in a 142-94 victory over Golden State (11/20/19) – the fewest minutes ever needed to produce a 35-point triple-double in NBA history.

The former EuroLeague MVP tallied 30 points, 14 assists and seven rebounds in Dallas’ 143-101 win over Cleveland (11/22/19), helping Dallas sweep its four-game homestand (11/16-11/22/19) against the teams that have accounted for the last six NBA championships (Toronto, San Antonio, Golden State and Cleveland). It marked the Mavericks’ first sweep of a homestand of four-or-more games since their championship season in 2010-11 (Dallas swept a four-game homestand from 1/25-1/31/11).

Dončić capped off the week by going for 41 points, 10 assists and six boards in Dallas’ 137-123 win at Houston on Nov. 24. It gave the Mavericks their first five-game win streak since 2016 (3/28-4/8/16 – 6 games) and snapped the Rockets’ six-game home win streak in the process.

Through 16 games in 2019-20, Dončić is averaging team highs of 30.6 points (2nd in NBA), 10.1 rebounds (12th in the NBA, only player under 6-8 ranked in the top-25), 9.8 rebounds (2nd in the league) and 1.4 steals in 33.9 minutes. He leads the NBA in triple-doubles with seven.

Dončić is averaging a 30-point triple-double in November, with 32.5 points, 10.6 rebounds and 10.8 assists per game in 12 games.

The second-year Slovenian, who appeared in his 88th career game at Houston on Nov. 24, is averaging 25.8 points, 9.8 rebounds and 8.2 assists over his last 44 games and has recorded 15 triple-doubles in that span. By comparison, Dončić went his first 44 career games without a triple-double while averaging 20.0 points, 6.7 rebounds and 5.1 assists per contest in that stretch.

Zhaire Smith drops season-high 18 points for Blue Coats

The Delaware Blue Coats (3-4), the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, fell to the Wisconsin Herd (7-1), 124-119, on Saturday night at 76ers Fieldhouse. Zhaire Smith, on assignment from the 76ers, posted a season-high 18 points (7-18 fg, 1-5 3fg, 2-2 ft) with seven rebounds and three steals in 32 minutes for the Blue Coats.

Six Blue Coats players, including Smith, scored in double figures in the loss. Tonight marks the third time in the past four contests that six Delaware players have scored at least 10 points. Jared Brownridge led the way with 23 points (8-16 fg, 5-10 3fg, 2-2 ft) in 25 minutes off the bench, while Xavier Munford tallied 15 points (7-17 fg, 1-4 3fg), six rebounds and seven assists in 31 minutes against his former team. Isaiah Miles scored 12 of his 14 total points (4-9 fg, 2-5 3fg, 2-2 ft) in the first quarter for Delaware, while Haywood Highsmith added 12 points (4-13 fg, 2-7 3fg, 1-1 ft), three rebounds and three assists in 21 minutes for the home team.

76ers two-way contract player Norvel Pelle recorded his second double-double of the season for the Blue Coats with 10 points (5-9 fg) and 12 rebounds, to go along with a pair of blocked shots, in 27 minutes of work.

With the win, Wisconsin extended its franchise-record winning streak to seven games. Rayjon Tucker posted a season-high 30 points (9-14 fg, 4-5 3fg, 4-7 ft) with six rebounds in 32 minutes for the Herd, as the visitors saw seven players reach double figures for the first time this season. Former Blue Coat D.J. Hogg contributed 10 of his 17 points (6-8 fg, 2-4 3fg, 3-3 ft) in the first quarter. Hogg, who sunk a pair of free throws in the closing seconds to extend his team’s lead to five points, added six rebounds and three assists in 28 minutes. Luke Maye added 16 points (6-13 fg, 4-8 3fg) and seven rebounds in 28 minutes for Wisconsin.

Delaware led 37-34 after one quarter, but trailed the Herd 72-65 at halftime. The Blue Coats outrebounded Wisconsin, which entered the game leading the G League with 56.8 rebounds per game, 55-48, in the loss. Delaware also blocked 10 shots for the second time this season.

Highsmith on Jonah Bolden: ‘He can do a lot of things’

Because of the depth the Philadelphia 76ers have in the front-court, there probably won’t be a lot of minutes available for 76ers F Jonah Bolden. However, fortunately for Bolden, he can continue to develop with the 76ers’ G League team, the Delaware Blue Coats.

Recently, Bolden was sent down to the Blue Coats to get some playing time, and he has produced. On Friday against Long Island, Bolden dropped 34 points and 9 rebounds, and on Saturday, the 23-year-old Bolden had another strong game when he scored 16 points and grabbed 16 rebounds against Canton.

“He’s very versatile,” Blue Coats’ Haywood Highsmith said about Bolden after their 123-111 loss to Canton on Saturday. “He can do a lot of things: pass, score, shoot, so he’s just a great all-around player.”

Last season, Bolden averaged 4.7 ppg and 3.8 rpg in 44 games with the 76ers. The second-year player has a decent stroke and shot 35% from downtown last season.

This season, Bolden came into the 2019-20 NBA season looking noticeably different. Bolden’s body looks different and he appears to have worked hard to improve his game in the offseason. One thing that he showed is the ability to put the ball on the floor. Last season, he did a lot of his scoring in spot-up situations but watching him in Delaware, he made an effort to do more things off the dribble. 

Bolden is still a young player, but barring injuries to Al Horford or Joel Embiid, will not have much of a role with the 76ers this season. But, hopefully, for him, he can continue to work on his game and continue to grow as a player.

 

Shayok wins NBA G League Player of the Week

The NBA G League announced today that Philadelphia 76ers two-way contract player Marial Shayok has been named NBA G League Player of the Week for games played Nov. 8 – 17. Shayok is the first Player of the Week award recipient of the 2019-20 G League season.

In three games played for the Delaware Blue Coats, Shayok averaged 35.0 points, 9.3 rebounds and 3.7 assists in 32.7 minutes per game. The Ottawa native currently leads the G League in scoring average (35.0 ppg), while shooting 48.7 percent (37-76) from the field, 33.3 percent (8-24) from beyond the arc and 85.0 percent (17-20) from the free throw line.

In front of a sellout crowd at 76ers Fieldhouse on Opening Night against the Maine Red Claws, Shayok posted a game-high 34 points with six rebounds and three assists in 29 minutes for Delaware. The rookie out of Iowa State followed that up with a 42-point performance (nine rebounds, three assists) in a 141-135 home win over the Greensboro Swarm on Nov. 11. When the Blue Coats posted the second-highest point total in franchise history in a 152-137 road victory at Long Island on Nov. 15, Shayok netted 29 points and grabbed a season-high 13 rebounds in 33 minutes to pick up his first career double-double.

The Blue Coats return to action on Tuesday night at home when they take on the Capital City Go-Go at 7:00 p.m.

Bolden drops 34, Shayok pours in 29 as Blue Coats defeat Long Island

The Delaware Blue Coats (2-1), the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, posted the second-highest point total in franchise history in the team’s 152-137 road victory over the Long Island Nets (1-2) on Friday night. The team previously scored 156 points in a victory over Westchester on April 3, 2015. In his first game of the season while on assignment from the 76ers, Jonah Bolden posted a game-high 34 points (12-18 fg, 5-9 3fg, 3-5 ft) with nine rebounds and three steals in 31 minutes of action.

Bolden was one of four Blue Coats to score 25 points or more in the contest. 76ers two-way contract player Marial Shayok continued his hot start to the season by netting 29 points (9-25 fg, 2-8 3fg, 6-8 ft) and grabbing a season-high 13 rebounds in 33 minutes for his first career double-double. Shayok currently leads the G League in scoring average at 35.0 points per game through the team’s first three games. Haywood Highsmith scored 19 of his 26 points (11-18 fg, 2-4 3fg, 1-1 ft) in the second half, while Jared Brownridge poured in 22 of his 25 points (9-14 fg, 6-10 3fg, 1-1 ft) for Delaware during the game’s final 24 minutes.

Delaware trailed 78-74 at halftime.

Xavier Munford notched his first double-double of the season for the Blue Coats with 16 points (5-15 fg, 3-4 ft) and a career-high 17 assists (one assist shy of Delaware’s franchise record) in a game-high 36 minutes.

CJ Massinburg paced Long Island with a team-high 28 points (10-14 fg, 1-2 3fg, 4-5 ft) to go along with six rebounds and three assists in 21 minutes off the bench. Jaylen Hands posted 21 points (8-14 fg, 3-5 3fg, 1-2 ft), four rebounds and four assists in 27 minutes as a starter for the Nets. Both Brooklyn Nets two-way contract players—Henry Ellenson and Timothé Luwawu-Cabarrot—made their season debuts for the home team. Ellenson finished one rebound shy of a double-double with 18 points (7-14 fg, 2-7 3fg, 1-1 ft) and nine boards in 30 minutes, while Luwawu-Cabarrot added 16 points (5-11 fg, 2-7 3fg, 2-3 ft) in 26 minutes of work.

76ers two-way player Marial Shayok scores 42 points for the Blue Coats

The Delaware Blue Coats (1-1), the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, posted the team’s highest point total ever at 76ers Fieldhouse in a 141-135 victory over the Greensboro Swarm (1-1) on Monday night. The team previously scored 140 points in a victory over Fort Wayne on Feb. 20, 2019. 76ers two-way contract player Marial Shayok totaled 20-or-more points in both halves of Monday’s game, finishing with 42 points (14-27 fg, 3-9 3fg, 9-9 ft), nine rebounds and three assists in 34 minutes, as the Blue Coats picked up their first win of the 2019-20 season.

Shayok has now scored 76 points through Delaware’s first two games of the season. Xavier Munford was a game-high plus-16 in tallying 36 points (9-18 fg, 6-10 3fg, 6-7 ft), six rebounds and six assists in 35 minutes for the Blue Coats. Haywood Highsmith (18 points, 10 rebounds) and Christ Koumadje (10 points, 12 rebounds) each registered a double-double, while Julian Washburn added 12 points (5-7 fg, 2-4 3fg) and four rebounds in 25 minutes as a reserve.

“We played at a great pace,” said Munford. “We kicked the ball ahead and we moved the ball. Our big emphasis coming into the game was more passes per possession, and I feel like we really focused on that tonight.”

For Greensboro, both players on assignment from the Charlotte Hornets—Caleb Martin and Jalen McDaniels—scored 30 points in the contest. Martin posted 30 points (10-19 fg, 1-6 3fg, 5-6 ft) with seven rebounds and five assists in 34 minutes, while McDaniels finished with 30 points (9-17 fg, 5-6 3fg, 4-4 ft), eight rebounds and five steals in 31 minutes. All five starters for the Swarm reached double figures scoring, including Hornets two-way contract player Robert Franks, who notched 27 points (10-19 fg, 3-7 3fg, 2-3 ft) and seven rebounds in 35 minutes of action. Fellow two-way contract player Kobi Simmons secured his second-straight double-double with 18 points (7-14 fg, 2-5 3fg, 1-1 ft) and 10 assists in 28 minutes.

The Blue Coats return to action on Friday night when they take on the Long Island Nets on the road at 7:00 p.m.

Blue Coats’ Shayok drops 34 points on Saturday night

The Delaware Blue Coats (0-1), the NBA G League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, fell to the Maine Red Claws (1-0), 148-125, on Saturday night in the season opener at 76ers Fieldhouse. In front of a sellout crowd, 76ers two-way contract player Marial Shayok posted a game-high 34 points (14-24 fg, 3-7 3fg, 2-3 ft) with six rebounds and three assists in 29 minutes.

Xavier Munford poured in 25 of his 29 points (8-16 fg, 3-4 3fg, 4-4 ft) in the second half for the Blue Coats, adding six rebounds and three assists in 29 minutes of action. Zhaire Smith, on assignment from the 76ers, tallied 14 points (5-12 fg, 1-5 3fg, 2-2 ft), five rebounds and two assists in 30 minutes. Christ Koumadje added 10 points (3-5 fg, 2-2 ft), five rebounds and four blocks in 22 minutes as a starter.

Boston Celtics two-way contract player Tremont Waters paced Maine with a team-high 28 points (9-18 fg, 7-11 3fg, 2-3 ft), four rebounds and three assists in 27 minutes. Romeo Langford, on assignment from the Celtics, posted 27 points (10-15 fg, 2-6 3fg, 3-4 ft), five rebounds and a game-high six blocks in 32 minutes for the Red Claws. Yante Maten totaled 24 points (7-12 fg, 2-3 3fg, 4-4 ft) and five rebounds in 20 minutes as a starter, while Boston Celtics two-way player Tacko Fall posted a double-double with 13 points (6-9 fg, 1-2 ft) and 11 rebounds to go along with three blocked shots in 25 minutes as a reserve.

The Blue Coats return to action on Monday night at home when they take on the Greensboro Swarm at 7:00 p.m.

Hawks’ John Collins: ‘I plan to fight my suspension’

The NBA has suspended Atlanta Hawks F John Collins for 25 games without pay for violating the league’s anti-drug policy.

According to the NBA, the second-year player tested positive for Growth Hormone Releasing Peptide-2 (GHRP-2).

Collins is expected to appeal the suspension, which begins tonight when the Hawks host the Spurs.

Here are statements from Hawks GM Travis Schlenk and Collins.

TRAVIS SCHLENK:

On behalf of the entire Hawks organization, we are disappointed to learn that John put himself in an unfortunate situation and violated the league’s anti-drug policy. We hold ourselves and each of our players to a high standard, and we are committed to supporting John as he learns from this setback and continues to grow as both a player and a person. Head Coach Lloyd Pierce and I have both talked to him and we believe that he is truly remorseful for his actions. We will provide John with support on and off the court while we look forward to his return to the team.”

JOHN COLLINS:

“First I want to apologize to my teammates, the Hawks organization, our fans, partners and community as a whole for this situation. I understand the impact this matter has on what we are trying to achieve together this season, and I am incredibly frustrated and disappointed in myself for putting all of us in this position. I have always been incredibly careful about what I put in my body, but I took a supplement which, unbeknownst to me, had been contaminated with an illegal component. I plan to fight my suspension in arbitration so I can get back on the court as soon as possible and continue to contribute to our 2019-20 campaign.”