Warriors top Spurs for record-tying 72nd win

admin   •   April 11, 2016   •   2113

Apr 10, 2016; San Antonio, TX, USA; Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry (30) shoots the ball over San Antonio Spurs point guard Tony Parker (9) during the first half at AT&T Center. Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Apr 10, 2016; San Antonio, TX, USA; Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry (30) shoots the ball over San Antonio Spurs point guard Tony Parker (9) during the first half at AT&T Center. Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

(The Sports Xchange) – There are records and then there are monumental records.

The quest for one record was thwarted Sunday when the Golden State Warriors beat San Antonio 92-86 to end the Spurs’ chance of completing the first undefeated home schedule in NBA history.

However, the Warriors’ victory kept alive their pursuit of setting the NBA’s single-season win mark. The defending champions cemented their place as one of the greatest teams in league history.

The Warriors (72-9) matched the victory total of the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls. Golden State can set a new mark with a home win over the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday, the season’s final night.

Much of the credit for Golden State’s Sunday victory goes to Stephen Curry, the Warriors’ transcendent point guard, and his 37 points, 16 of them in a pivotal stretch of the third quarter.

A nip-and-tuck game between the teams with the league’s two best records turned in the first six minutes of the fourth quarter. Warriors forward Harrison Barnes had three big baskets and led a group of mostly reserves to a six-point lead over a mixture of San Antonio’s starters and bench players.

From there, Curry and Klay Thompson took over as Golden State turned a four-point lead into a 90-79 advantage on Curry’s finger-roll layup with 1:34 to play. San Antonio cut the Warriors’ lead to four points in the waning seconds but could not complete the comeback.

Golden State handed the Spurs their first home loss of the season and ended San Antonio’s franchise-high, 48-game regular-season home winning streak that began on March 12, 2015. The Spurs’ streak is the second longest in NBA history, right after the Warriors’ mark of 54 consecutive home wins that ended last month.

“We are in the moment and enjoying the ride, but the goal is to win a championship,” Curry said. “We’ve put ourselves in a great position to do something no other team has ever done. It’s hard to step out of the locker room and understand the hoopla that comes with chasing the record. We want to go out and take advantage of an opportunity that may never come again.”

The Warriors also ended their streak of 33 consecutive regular-season defeats at San Antonio. Golden State’s last regular-season win in the Alamo City was a 108-94 victory on Feb. 14, 1997.

Golden State took the season series from the Spurs, 3-1.

“Steph (Curry) got away from us for a while, but part of the reason we lost was because of some bad shots,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. “We lost our poise for about a three-minute period, and that was the difference in the game. We played a hell of a team, and our aggressiveness and attention to detail was much better.”

Thompson added 14 points for the Warriors, while Draymond Green hit for 11 points.

The Spurs (65-15) were led by LaMarcus Aldridge’s 24 points and Kawhi Leonard’s 20 points and 13 rebounds. David West and Aldridge each pulled down 10 rebounds.

San Antonio held a 19-14 lead after the end of a raucous first quarter. The Spurs outrebounded Golden State 18-11 in the quarter, 6-3 on the offensive boards, which created five second-chance points for San Antonio.

The teams fought through tautly played second quarter with the Spurs gaining a seven-point lead twice in the period before Golden State pushed within 31-30 after consecutive 3-pointers by Brandon Rush and Thompson and jumpers by Barnes and Thompson.

Green pumped in a 3-pointer a minute later to tie the game at 33-33, and then Curry picked off a pass from the Spurs’ Danny Green and gave the Warriors a short-lived 35-33 lead. Aldridge responded with a put-back off yet another offensive rebound on San Antonio’s ensuing possession to knot the score at 35-35 at halftime.

“We had some easy looks that we didn’t make, and we had some defensive breakdowns at some tough times that they were able to take advantage of,” Aldridge said. “There are some things we can take away from this game that we can get better at.”

The Spurs opened the third quarter with a 10-2 run, punctuated by a Leonard dunk over Andrew Bogut after a strong move to the basket. Golden State answered with back-to-back 3-pointers by Curry that cut the deficit lead to 45-43.

Curry kept shooting and making shots for the rest of the quarter, tallying 16 in the period as the Warriors built a 62-61 lead. The reigning MVP canned a three-quarter court shot at the end of the quarter that was waved off because time had expired.

“San Antonio is a team that doesn’t beat themselves, so you have to come and take a game away from them,” Curry said.

Barnes had seven points and Marreese Speights added a bucket and two free throws in the first six minutes of the fourth quarter to help keep the Warriors’ in front at 73-69. That was when Thompson and Curry took over, and San Antonio never could make a sustained run through the remainder of the game until it was too late.

“Everybody is excited — we just beat a great, great team,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “It’s one of the best victories of the year, and with that said, it means nothing come playoff time. It was a true team win, and it was a strange game because this was like the playoffs, when you throw your rotations out of the window. Everybody played well.”

Vince Carter retires after NBA record 22-season career

UNTV News   •   June 26, 2020

Atlanta Hawks guard Vince Carter officially announced his retirement from professional basketball on Thursday (June 25) after an NBA record 22-season career during which his high-flying dunks made him one of the game’s top players in his prime.

Carter, widely regarded as one of the greatest dunkers of all time, had previously said the 2019-20 NBA campaign would be his last but had not addressed his playing status since the NBA suspended its season in mid-March due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

“I am officially done playing basketball professionally,” Carter, 43, told the “Winging It” podcast.

Carter, the first NBA player to feature in four different decades, signed a one-year deal with the Hawks last August.

However, their season is over as they did not qualify for the NBA’s 22-team format for restarting action in late July at Disney World amid the novel coronavirus.

Carter played for eight teams during his career but will be most remembered for his time with the Toronto Raptors, where he put the Canadian city on the basketball map and earned the nickname “Air Canada” for his feats above the rim.

After his first season in Toronto, Carter was named the NBA’s rookie of the year in 1999. He was then named an All-Star for each of the following eight seasons.

In his second season, Carter won the Slam Dunk Contest during All-Star Weekend with a dazzling display that further increased his stardom and helped ignite basketball’s popularity in what had otherwise been an ice hockey-mad country.

Carter, who ranks 22nd on the NBA’s all-time scoring list, averaged 16.7 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game during a career that also included stops in New Jersey, Orlando, Phoenix, Dallas, Memphis, Sacramento and Atlanta.

He also helped USA Basketball win gold medals at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and 2003 FIBA Americas tournament. (Reuters)

(Production; David Grip)

League approves plan to resume NBA season in July at Disney World

UNTV News   •   June 5, 2020

REUTERS – The National Basketball Association (NBA) Board of Governors have approved a plan to restart the suspended season with a tentative July 31 start at Disney World, Florida amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the league said on Thursday (June 4).

The plan would see 22 of the NBA’s 30 teams play eight games to determine a 16-team playoff field that would follow the traditional post-season format with four best-of-seven series that would crown a champion no later than October 12.

The league said approval from its Board of Governors, which came on the day originally scheduled for the start of the NBA Finals, is the first formal step among the many required to resume the season.

According to ESPN, the vote on the format was 29-1, with the Portland Trail Blazes voting against the proposal.

All games, practices and housing would be at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex which is inside the Orlando resort and has multiple hotels and arenas, and would allow the league to limit outside exposure.

The NBA was the first North American sports league to suspend its season due to the COVID-19 pandemic after one of its players tested positive for the new coronavirus in mid-March.

The 22 returning teams would be comprised of the eight teams from each of the two conferences currently in playoff positions plus the six clubs that are six games or fewer behind the eighth seed in their respective conferences.

If everything goes according to plan, the NBA said the 2020-21 season would begin on Dec. 1.

The league also said it plans to hold its 2020 NBA Draft Lottery to determine the order of the first 14 selections on Aug. 25. Lottery teams would be comprised of the eight clubs that do not participate in the restart and the six that go to Florida but do not qualify for the playoffs.

The actual NBA Draft, typically held in June, is now scheduled for Oct. 15.

(Production: Kurt Michael Hall)

Jordan’s autographed game-worn sneakers from his rookie season sold for record $560,000

UNTV News   •   May 18, 2020

NBA great Michael Jordan’s autographed game-worn sneakers from his rookie season fetched a record $560,000 (463,380 pounds) in an online auction, Sotheby’s said on Sunday (May 17).

The Air Jordan 1s, designed for Jordan in 1985 and the first ever signature sneakers, were expected to sell for between $100,000 and $150,000 in the auction.

Known for selling multimillion-dollar art, Sotheby’s held its first auction dedicated entirely to sneakers last year and had then set a world record of $437,500 for a pair of 1972 Nike running shoes known as the “Moon Shoe.”

“We saw tremendous bidding up until the moment the sale closed, with the value more than doubling in the final hour alone,” said Brahm Wachter, Sotheby’s director of eCommerce development.

“That coupled with strong international bidding from six countries on four continents shows not only the incredible appeal of Michael Jordan… but also that sneaker collecting is truly a global and growing market.”

Like most of Jordan’s basketball shoes, they are a mismatched pair in a size 13 (left) and size 13.5 (right).

The auction coincided with the 35th anniversary of the Air Jordan brand and the screening of the 10-part ESPN documentary “The Last Dance” about the Chicago Bulls and Jordan. The final two episodes of the show are set to air later on Sunday.

The shoes were sold by collector Jordan Geller, the founder of the sneaker museum Shoezeum in Las Vegas. (Reuters)

(Production: David Grip)

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