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    Highlights of Sunday’s NBA games

    by UNTV News   |   Posted on Monday, May 1st, 2017

    Apr 30, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Utah Jazz forward Derrick Favors (15) sets a screen on Los Angeles Clippers guard Raymond Felton (2) as Utah Jazz forward Gordon Hayward (20) drives to the basket in the second period of game seven of the first round of the 2017 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

    (The Sports Xchange) – Highlights of Sunday’s National Basketball Association games:

    Jazz 104, Clippers 91

    Gordon Hayward scored 26 points and collected eight rebounds to lead seven Utah players in double figures, and the Jazz eliminated the Los Angeles Clippers from the Western Conference playoffs with a 104-91 road victory in Game Seven on Sunday at Staples Center.

    George Hill and Derrick Favors contributed 17 points apiece as the Jazz advanced to the second round, where they will meet the Golden State Warriors. Game One is Tuesday at Oracle Arena in Oakland, California.

    Favors also grabbed 11 rebounds before fouling out with 5:24 remaining to fill a void left by Jazz center Rudy Gobert, who also was plagued by fouls. Gobert finished with one point and four rebounds in 13 minutes.

    The Jazz won three of their four games on the Clippers’ home court.

    DeAndre Jordan had 24 points and 17 boards to lead the Clippers. Jamal Crawford added 20 points and Chris Paul scored 13 points and handed out nine assists.

    The Jazz used a third-quarter spurt to grab a double-digit lead and retained it for almost the rest of the contest.

    Clippers forward Paul Pierce, in his final NBA game, scored six points.

    Celtics 123, Wizards 111

    The Boston Celtics spotted Washington the first 16 points of the game and then roared to a 123-111 home victory over the Wizards in the first game of the Eastern Conference semi-finals.

    Top-seeded Boston, winning its fifth straight playoff game after losing the first two games of the first round, both at home to the Chicago Bulls, trailed 22-5 just 5 1/2 minutes into the contest. But the Celtics caught up in the second quarter, stayed close and then exploded in a 36-point third quarter to lead by 15 after three before holding off a Washington charge.

    Game Two in Tuesday night at TD Garden.

    Isaiah Thomas, who flew from Chicago to Tacoma, Washington, to attend the funeral of his sister, Chyna, on Saturday before flying back late Saturday night, scored 12 of his 33 points and Jae Crowder 11 of his playoff career-high 24 in the 36-16 third quarter.

    Thomas, who gave an emotional speech at the funeral, lost a tooth to an Otto Porter inadvertent elbow in the first half — the tooth flying up into the air before Thomas, who finished with nine assists, picked it up off the floor.

    Bradley Beal led the Wizards with 27 points.

    The Wizards scored the first nine points of the fourth quarter but the game then belonged to Al Horford, who scored 10 of his 21 points in a 3:25 span to ensure the win.

    Washington’s Markieff Morris suffered a left ankle sprain after being fouled by Horford in the second quarter. He stayed in the game after a long delay, left with 7:16 remaining in the second quarter and didn’t return.

    The 16-0 start was the biggest in the playoffs dating back to at least 2002-03, according to STATS Inc., as the Wizards grabbed the first 12 rebounds and Boston opened 0-for-8 from the floor.

    (Editing by Andrew Both)

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    Clippers agree to trade PG Paul to Rockets: reports

    by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, June 29th, 2017

    FILE PHOTO: Clippers’ Chris Paul (#3). REUTERS

    (The Sports Xchange) – The Los Angeles Clippers reached an agreement on a blockbuster trade to send All-Star point guard Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets, according to multiple reports Wednesday.

    Paul, 32, agreed to opt in to the final year of his $24.2 million contract, clearing the way for the Clippers to execute a sign-and-trade deal with the Rockets and bring back assets for the star player, league sources told The Vertical.

    The Rockets will send forward Sam Dekker and guards Patrick Beverley and Lou Williams, plus a top-three protected 2018 first-round pick to the Clippers in exchange for Paul, sources told ESPN.

    Paul had until Wednesday to opt out of the final year of his contract and become an unrestricted free agent. The Clippers risked losing Paul for nothing in free agency.

    Paul could have signed a new deal with the Clippers that started at $34 million a year had he opted out of his contract. He will now be eligible to sign a five-year, $205 million maximum extension with the Rockets since he is being acquired in a trade.

    Paul wanted to play alongside Rockets All-Star guard James Harden, according to The Vertical. Paul and Harden reportedly discussed the possibility of a partnership at length and believe they can find a way to thrive together.

    Paul, who was acquired by the Clippers in a 2011 trade with New Orleans, is a nine-time All-Star, nine-time All-NBA player and a nine-time All-Defensive team member. He played six seasons with Los Angeles after six seasons in New Orleans.

    For his career, Paul owns averages of 18.7 points, 9.9 assists and 2.3 steals in 834 NBA games.

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    Gritty Celtics stun Cavaliers to reduce series deficit

    by UNTV News   |   Posted on Monday, May 22nd, 2017

    May 21, 2017; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson (13) fights for possession with Boston Celtics center Kelly Olynyk (41) and guard Marcus Smart (36) during the first half in game three of the Eastern conference finals of the NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

    (The Sports Xchange) – Avery Bradley’s three-pointer in the last second of Game Three touched every part of the rim before bouncing in, giving the Celtics an improbable 111-108 road win over the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference finals on Sunday.

    The surprise loss means Cleveland leads the best-of-seven series 2-1 ahead of Game Four in Quicken Loans Arena on Tuesday.

    “Thank God it’s bouncing on the rim because that’s taking time,” Celtics coach Brad Stevens told reporters.

    “If it goes in or doesn’t go in, they have a timeout left. So when it bounced around, I was actually hoping it went in, obviously, but not completely disappointed that it was bouncing up there.”

    The Celtics came into the contest missing star player Isaiah Thomas, who is out for the remainder of the post-season because of a hip injury, and aware that the Cavaliers had lost just one home game to an Eastern team in the playoffs since 2015.

    However, Thomas’ replacement, Marcus Smart, scored a career-high 27 points and handed out seven assists, and Bradley had 20 points.

    Al Horford added 16 points, Jae Crowder amassed 14 points and 11 rebounds, and Kelly Olynyk contributed 15 off the bench for the Celtics, who were beaten by an average of 28.5 points in the first two games.

    When the two teams left Boston after Game Two, the Cavs had beaten the Celtics by 44 points for the most lopsided win in Eastern finals history, a defeat that both stung and inspired Stevens’ side.

    “We’ve got guys that have chips on their shoulders,” Stevens added. “A lot of these guys have been overlooked, and this is their first opportunity to really play a meaningful role.

    “We knew that while Friday was a 44-point disaster, it was worth one (game). It wasn’t worth four.”

    FINAL-SHOT FATE

    The Cavs led by as many as 21 points in the third quarter on Sunday but they shot 2-for-17 from three-point range in the second half. The Celtics made 18 three-pointers for the game.

    Cleveland also committed 16 turnovers that Boston turned into 14 points. The Celtics gave the ball away nine times, leading to five Cavaliers points.

    “You let a team grab momentum like that, you almost know that last shot is going in,” James said.

    “It was like, you already knew. As soon as the ball went out of his hands, you kind of knew that shot was going to go in because of how the game was just played throughout the second half.”

    James was ineffective, scoring just 11 points on 4-of-13 shooting with six turnovers. He was held scoreless in the fourth quarter and was limited to three points in the second half.

    “I didn’t have it,” James said.

    Kyrie Irving led the Cavs with 29 points, and Kevin Love added 28 points and 10 rebounds. Tristan Thompson scored 18 points to go with 13 boards.

    Cleveland blew a chance to set a playoff record for consecutive wins (14) dating to Game Five of last year’s NBA Finals and become the fourth team in history to start the playoffs 11-0.

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    Boston Celtics win NBA draft lottery, Lakers second

    by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, May 17th, 2017

    Apr 18, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Celtics point guard Isaiah Thomas (4) crosses the logo during the third quarter in game two of the first round of the 2017 NBA Playoffs against the Chicago Bulls at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

    (The Sports Xchange) – Four years ago, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett played their final games for the Celtics. A month later, they were traded to the Brooklyn Nets in a massive deal that involved multiple first-round picks going to Boston.

    On Tuesday, the Celtics reaped the ultimate reward of acquiring a first overall pick by winning the NBA draft lottery. It is the first time Boston will select first since the lottery began in 1985.

    The Celtics obtained the pick from the Nets in 2013 and had a 25 percent of getting the top pick. The Nets finished with the league’s worst record at 20-62.

    Besides getting the first overall pick a night before they open the Eastern Conference finals at home against the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Celtics also get another first-round choice in 2018 from the Nets. Boston already obtained first-round picks from Brooklyn in 2014 and 2016.

    Markelle Fultz is projected to be the top overall pick in the June 22 draft, and the Celtics could use the pick to pair him in the backcourt with Isaiah Thomas. Thomas was the last overall pick by the Sacramento Kings in the 2011 draft.

    While Boston was going to get a top-four pick, the Los Angeles Lakers had to sweat out the lottery. They moved up one spot to number two.

    The Philadelphia 76ers, who used the top overall pick to land Ben Simmons last year, will select third. Phoenix will get the fourth overall pick.

    The Sacramento Kings rounded out the top five. The Orlando Magic and Minnesota Timberwolves are sixth and seventh while the New York Knicks are eighth.

    The Dallas Mavericks are ninth and the New Orleans Pelicans are 10th.

    The Charlotte Hornets, Detroit Pistons, Denver Nuggets and Miami Heat will get the final four lottery picks.

    (Editing by Gene Cherry)

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