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28.11.2019 03:42
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NEW ORLEANS -- With a quick step to his left, Anthony Davis bolted from the man he was supposed to guard and launched himself toward the backboard in time to swat away Ty Lawsons driving layup. As the crowd erupted, Davis knocked the ball off the glass and back into his hands. With 1:14 to go in overtime, Davis sixth block also became his 17th rebound. That, along with his 32 points -- which tied a career high -- proved too much for Denver to overcome, and the Pelicans held on for their third straight victory, 111-107 on Sunday night. "I dont think I was supposed to (guard Lawson)," Davis said of his pivotal block. "I just tried to make a basketball play. Coach (Monty Williams) tells us all the time, If youre going to do something like that, you better go get it. Thank God I got the rebound. It got us hyped and it was a play that we needed down the stretch." Williams was delighted and amused by the play because of how it fit the theme of pregame banter he had overheard between Davis and his teammates. "Its funny because they were just talking about before the game how he wanted to just go up and grab it out of the air like Patrick Ewing used to," Williams said. "I was like, What are you guys talking about? Where is this conversation going? And then he makes a play like that, so it shows you how much I know." For Davis, it was one last historic performance before hes old enough to legally accept someones offer to buy him a drink for all hes done in less than two seasons of basketball in the Big Easy. Since the Pelicans were founded as the Charlotte Hornets in 1988, no one had racked up as many points, rebounds and blocks in the same game as Davis did against Denver. "Thats a testament to my team. Theyre giving me the ball where I can score and cutting hard so their man cant help, making big shots, playing defence, having my back if I try to go block a shot, boxing out and letting me get the rebounds," said Davis, who turns 21 on Tuesday. "It all goes to the team and not just me. I cant do it by myself." Indeed, Davis pointed out that his overtime heroics, which included four crucial free throws, never would have happed if not for teammates like Anthony Morrow, whose 14 points included a 15-foot pullup in the lane that tied the game at 94 with 1 second left in regulation. Morrow had to save a ball tipped away from Davis, then had to get off a shot over the taller Lawson. "Hes a great defender. He was up under me, so I just wanted to make sure I got to where I wanted to get to and just knocked the 15-footer down," Morrow said. Tyreke Evans, meanwhile, added 20 points, his fifth straight game with 20 or more. Kenneth Faried had 22 points and 10 rebounds for Denver, which had won its previous two games and led by as many as 16 in the second quarter. Aaron Brooks scored 12 of his 15 points in the fourth quarter, nearly rescuing Denver from its collapse. After being up by as many as 13 points early in the second half, Denver had fallen behind by seven in the fourth quarter before Brooks scored six straight on three free throws and a transition 3-pointer. Later, his clutch, weaving drive around Davis for a scoop off the glass put Denver in front 94-90 with 1:20 left. But Brian Roberts free throws, followed by Morrows clutch jumper, sent the game to overtime. "It wasnt the end, it was the third quarter. We let them get back in the game," Faried said. "Its something about us and this team this year. We dont have that killer instinct quite yet." There were nine lead changes in the overtime thriller between two teams well out of playoff contention, but playing with pride. Davis deep offensive rebound and assist on Morrows 3 made it 100-98, and Davis exuberantly held three fingers in the air as the ball went down, only to see Lawson convert a quick three-point play on a driving layup as he was fouled to give Denver the lead right back. Roberts followed with a jumper for New Orleans, then Wilson Chandler nailed a 3 to put the Nuggets back up by two. Evans layup tied it for the eighth and final time at 104 before Davis free throws gave New Orleans the lead for good. Lawson finished with 15 points, Chandler with 14 and JJ Hickson 12 for the Nuggets, who outshot New Orleans 47.1 per cent (40 of 85) to 45.6 per cent (41 of 90), but hurt themselves 27 turnovers. "Weve just got to do a better job of taking care of the ball, and our role mentality, the things we talk about when youre playing your role -- fundamentally, boxing out and doing the things that we need to do to win this type of game," Denver coach Brian Shaw said. NOTES: Davis has surpassed 20 points and 10 rebounds in a game 22 times this season, and he has 30 double-doubles. ... The Nuggets resume their five-game road trip Monday night in Charlotte, followed by games Wednesday in Orlando, Friday in Miami and Saturday in Atlanta. Josh Hader Jersey .J. - The New Jersey Devils know the odds are against them as they chase a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Taylor Williams Jersey . -- Stacy Lewis shot 7-under 65 to lead the LPGA Tour team to the championship of the 3Tour Challenge on Tuesday. Acclaimed by world football leaders but held in contempt by many football fans. Blatter should arrive at the Itaquerao stadium in Sao Paulo to watch host Brazil play Croatia confident that this tournament -- his fifth as president -- wont be his last leading the worlds favourite sport. Paul Molitor Jersey . His big 2-minute outburst in the fourth quarter Tuesday night is all that really mattered for the Dallas Mavericks. Cheap Brewers Jerseys . FIFA said the suspension was requested by ethics prosecutor Michael Garcia, making Beckenbauer the first person to be punished as a result of the case. Beckenbauer refused "repeated requests for his assistance, including requests that he provide information during an in-person interview or in response to written questions provided in both English and German," FIFA said in a statement.1) Sergio Aguero is making a case to be this years Luis Suarez. The Argentine has masked subpar team play through spectacular individual performance. Agueros brace was catalyst in a 4-1 away win at Sunderland. Two minutes after Connor Wickham gave Sunderland the lead, Aguero made Santiago Vergini look a pylon, going between the legs before a thundering blast, bringing the back netting up from the ground. It was a trademark quick-trigger strike that has made Aguero the most dangerous man in the Premier League. His second goal came on a near post run that was equal in quality as finish. He also added an assist, taking his tally to 14 goals and three assists through 14 games. Hes undeniably the Premier Leagues best player thus far. Aguero is now in the conversation among the top players in the world. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are top two. Aguero is somewhere in the second tier, with the likes of Neymar, Arjen Robben, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, etc. Perhaps a more convincing case could be made if Aguero had remained healthy through Argentinas World Cup campaign. The good news for City, health issues havent been an issue as hes featured in every league match. Aguero has been outstanding, yet remains off the blistering pace set by Suarez last season. After missing the five games through suspension, Suarez scored 19 in his first 14. He ended with 31. Suarez was relied upon for Liverpool to remain in the title race, just as Aguero is at present time. With Vincent Kompany (hamstring) and David Silva (knee) yet to return from injury, the onus falls on Agueros shoulders. It is time for the rest of his City teammates to step up. 2) Are Chelsea as the new Invincibles? While they remain undefeated after a comprehensive 3-0 win over Spurs, Im still not buying they will go undefeated. Chelsea are solid and organized, but not without flaws. Jose Mourinho has refused to rotate his squad, meaning heavy minutes logged by many team members. Seven players have started every league match, including three of the four defenders. Cesar Azpilicueta is the other defender and has started 12. 11 players have started nine games or more, with only 18 players seeing minutes. Mourinho is fortunate his team has remained incredibly healthy. This will not continue. Mourinho will have to rotate his squad. And when he does, the team will inevitably slip. The lack of squad rotation this far is a calculated risk. The hope is early points will allow further rotation later as potential important FA Cup and Champions League matches build. So far, so good. 3) Chelsea play the 4-2-3-1 to near perfection. Consistency in system has turned this group into one that doesnt make mistakes and punish those made by others. Gary Cahill gave up a rare chance against Spurs, careless in possession. Harry Kane failed to capitalize. Moments later, Eden Hazard played a textbook one-two with Didier Drogba. Aaron Lennon and Vlad Chiriches fell asleep. 1-0. Three minutes later, Hugo Lloris made a meal of his clearance. A quick touch to Oscar who played a wonderful through-ball to Drogba. 2-0. Game over. Chelseas superior defensive rotation, with the 10-man unit in unison has been an impenetrable wall. Only 11 goals conceded is a testament to team maturity and patience. The formation may not be sexy, but its effective. 4) Mauricio Pochettino left a good situation at Southampton to go to White Hart Lane where expectations are high and the talent questionable. The transition hasnt been smooth. Pochettino seems unsure on how to best utilize the talent in his squad. Through 14 games, he still hasnt a clue how to best deploy his back four. Up front, Roberto Saldado was relegated to the bench Wednesday, after a goal last time out. Nacer Chadli, back from injury, should have gone from the start. And why Paulinho continues to come off the bench is puzzling. Pochettino has some nice players. Perhaps not a top-four side, but certainly better than what Pochettinos getting out of them. All the meanwhile, Spurs are without a win at Stamford Bridge since 1990. Embarrassing. 5) Arsenal are the new Heartbreak Kids. The Gunners scored for the seventh time in the final five minutes of a game this season to get past Southampton, 1-0. Credit the team for the last gasp goals, but leaving it late is also an indication of team struggles. Nothing has come easy. The short-comings are plain to see. But yet again, Alexei Sanchez puts on his cape and comes to the rescue. His ninth of the league season was a similar read; Sanchez the saviour after Arsenal superior in possession, while not creating nearly enough genuine goal scoring opportunities and poor in front of goal. Arsenal deserved no more than a point. Toby Alderweireld going off (hamstring) in the 84th, leaving Southampton with 10-men having already made three substitutions was the turning point. Arsenal remains sixth in the table, which seems fraudulent considering how much work is left to do. Lets see how a busy December plays out for this inconsistent outfit. 6) The lost-look on Ronald Koemans face said it all. Southampton was hugely unlucky. Back-to-back weeks with innocent looking injuries the downfall. Last week it was Morgan Schneiderlin, the teams most important player, leaving at halftime (thigh) while deadlocked with Manchester City. They lost 3-0 after the re-shuffle. Jack Cork (knock) going off in the first half at Arsenal was a huge blow, changing the flow of the game.dddddddddddd And Alderweirelds untimely injury sealed Southamptons fate. Koeman isnt blessed with great depth. James Ward-Prowse (ankle/foot) remains out as well. The current stretch is as tough as it gets. Manchester United are next this Monday. All this makes the 1-1 draw last week with Aston Villa that much more damning. 7) There is an argument to be made Southamptons Fraser Forster should be Englands top keeper. Forster was outstanding at the Emirates, outstanding in positioning and shot-stopping. Southampton has conceded the fewest goals (10), Forster has the most shutouts (7) and top GAA (0.71). We all know the track record of Joe Hart. Forster can be considered a superior option. 8) Just because Marouane Fellaini scored doesnt mean he played well. Fellaini scored his first Old Trafford goal in Manchester Uniteds 2-1 win over Stoke City. For all Fellaini does well, he lacks the top quality demanded at United. His headed goal is testament to his ability to get forward and use his size. The rest of his game is thoroughly average. His misjudgment on the ball, turned phantom neck injury, directly led to Steven Nzonzis goal. Too frequently Fellainis touch lets him down or leads to poor decision-making and distribution. His positional sense is non-existent, unreliable in attack and defending. Antonio Valencia couldnt get forward with regularity due to Fellainis unpredictable ways down the right. United will not get better with Fellaini being a regular. More is demanded in intelligent ball movement. Thats what they need to aspire to. Fellaini is no more than a player to be brought on to change the flow of the game. Hes a disrupter. Thats all. 9) Michael Carrick is Manchester Uniteds most important player. There is no denying his influence as United has won the last four games, the only four games he has started. His composure on the ball and superior ability to read the game has settled the team and kept the group organized. Carrick completed the most passes (104) over the weekend and remains the only consistent in Uniteds midfield. Stoke tried to limit Carricks influence by putting a defensive player on him at all times. This allowed Juan Mata to have his best game of the season, free to roam and find space. 10) There is nothing wrong with Robin Van Persie. The critics insist the Dutchman has lost a step. While that may be true, there are few better strikers in the Prem. The issue has been a lack of service. Uniteds meddling midfield needs to get him more involved. Van Persie made a number of intelligent runs and/or found space against Stoke and his teammates failed to provide service. This is unacceptable. Hes a volume player who requires to be brought into the match. His goal Saturday against Hull serves as reminder what happens when you get him the ball. He had the most touches of the season that game. Feed the target-man and reap the benefits. 11) Steven Gerrard has now scored against 33 different Premier League teams, tallying in Liverpools 3-1 win over Leicester City. It was a rare goal from open play, as 17 of his last 19 have come from dead balls. It speaks to his limitations at this stage of his career. The goal and the victory was a statement. Gerrard should not have started on the bench on his 16h anniversary as a Liverpool player last Saturday. Gerrard need be rested from time to time. But it has to be done selectively. It made no sense for Gerrard to sit in a must-win game with tensions sky-high at Anfield. Gerrard may not be what he once was, but there is no proper replacement. Neither Lucas nor Joe Allen will suffice, they are average at best. If the reins are to be past from Gerrard, adequate talent to replace is a must. 12) After losing for the seventh time in nine matches and getting into a spat with a supporter, Leicester City boss Nigel Pearson declared post-match if fans cant recognize the team-effort, they should stay at home. The comment is an absolute no-no for any manager or player. The fans are the lifeblood that drive the club. Passion should not be curbed. Criticism is part of the gig and comes with the losses, especially for a team in last place. Pearson knows better. The pressure is on Pearson with a crucial away match with Aston Villa ahead. 13) Newcastles Papiss Cisse scored his fifth goal in a 1-1 draw with Burnley. The five goals are more than the four games hes started this season, and three more than he scored all of last year. 14) Southampton has received the headlines as surprise up-and-comer; West Ham United and Swansea City are every bit worthy of praise. They sit fifth and seventh respectively, on 24 and 22 points. Both teams are good enough to stay in the mix for Europa League spots. The Hammers defensive duo of Aaron Cresswell and Winston Reid are among the best at their positions. And the team continues to produce without top goal-scorer Diafra Sakho (back). Meanwhile, Wilfried Bony has scored in two of his last three for Swansea. And the balance between ball-cherishers in the middle and speed on the wings has proved a dangerous combination. Sundays game between these teams has the makings of most entertaining of the weekend. Gareth Wheeler can be reached at: @WheelerTSN ' ' '

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