Curry Cooks Nets; Clippers Stay Red Hot
Kevin Durant praised his former teammate Steph Curry for playing like an MVP favorite this season, and he got a front row example of that on Tuesday night in the Golden State Warriors' 117-99 rout of the Brooklyn Nets. Curry went off for 37 points, while Durant had a season-low 19 points in a tough night for the home team. The Warriors point guard drilled nine three-pointers, raising his average to 28.7 points per game, right behind Durant, who sits at 28.9 after Tuesday. Andrew Wiggins added 19 points for the Warriors who have an NBA-best 12-2 record, while the Nets fell short in their return home from a road trip, despite James Harden's 24 points. Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Clippers got back on track quickly with a 106-92 win over the San Antonio Spurs, moving on from their seven-game winning streak ending this past Sunday. Paul George continued to carry that team with 34 points, while Reggie Jackson got hot late to finish with 21 points. The Spurs are struggling at 4-10 this season, but Dejounte Murray did have a nice night, falling short of a triple-double with 26 points, 12 rebounds, and nine assists.
The only other game on the NBA schedule saw the Utah Jazz send the Philadelphia 76ers to their fifth straight loss for the first time since December 2017 with a 120-85 rout at home.
Cavaliers' Evan Mobley Out 2-4 Weeks
The Cleveland Cavaliers are enjoying a solid, surprising start to their season, but now the challenges are coming in to play in the form of the injury bug. The team will be without rookie Evan Mobley for two to four weeks with a sprained right elbow. The third overall pick in this past year's NBA Draft underwent an MRI to get the severity of the injury that he suffered during Monday's loss to the Boston Celtics. Mobley got tied up with big man Enes Kanter, which led to the injury, as he exited the game and did not return. The 20-year-old has had a solid start to his NBA career, averaging 14.6 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks per game, but he now joins the likes of Collin Sexton and Jarrett Allen on the sidelines.
No. 4 Michigan, No. 12 Oregon Fall in Upsets
And just like that, we have had three top 15 upsets within two days in college basketball, including two on Tuesday night. Of those two was a stunner in the top five, as the fourth-ranked Michigan Wolverines blew a second half lead to fall at home to unranked Seton Hall, 67-65, for their first loss. Jared Rhoden had 16 points to lead the Pirates, who got their first road win over a nonconference top five team, and their first win over a top five team in general since beating Temple in the second round of the 2000 NCAA Tournament. The now 3-0 Pirates trailed by as many as 11 points on the road before storming back, taking the lead with 1:15 left for the first time since the first half. The Wolverines sealed their loss when Terrance Williams missed the first of two free throws with 0.8 seconds on the clock. Meanwhile, the 12th-ranked Oregon Ducks were not nearly as close in their upset loss, falling to the BYU Cougars, 81-49, in the Phil Knight Invitational. Alex Barcello had a big night with a season-high 25 points, including four makes from three-point range, improving his team's record to 3-0 this season. The Cougars led by as many as 33 points in the upset and also got 12 points from Te'Jon Lucas while handing the Ducks their first loss. They were already receiving votes to be in the AP Top 25 rankings, so expect them to crack those rankings next Monday.
Other contests on Monday saw the Duke Blue Devils get a 92-52 rout of Gardner-Webb for a 4-0 start to their season. While Purdue, Memphis, Alabama, Houston, North Carolina, and USC all got their third straight wins to begin the campaign.
Michigan Gives Juwan Howard Five-Year Extension
The Michigan Wolverines basketball program was pleasantly surprised with how quick head coach Juwan Howard carried their team to the top after taking over, so they rewarded him on Tuesday. The school gave the head basketball coach a five-year contract extension that keeps him with the team through the 2025-2026 season. This will silence any NBA head coaching rumors that will undoubtedly come after each season, as the Michigan alumni continues to give his team high expectations. The financial details of the contract were not disclosed, but Howard earned every penny of whatever it was for what he's done for the school that he played for in the 1990's. The former 20-year NBA veteran took over the team in 2019 and has since led them to a Big Ten regular season championship and a one seed in last year's NCAA Tournament, where they made it to the Elite Eight before falling to the UCLA Bruins.
Virginia Tech Moves On From Head Coach Justin Fuente
News came out early Tuesday morning that the Virginia Tech Hokies football program is moving on from head coach Justin Fuente, this move after six seasons together. Fuente went 43-41 during that time, as athletic director Whit Babcock made this announcement, calling it a mutual decision between the two sides. The issue reportedly was that Babcock could not guarantee another year for Fuente, who then wanted out, according to ESPN. They negotiated the buyout from $10 million to $8.75 million, and that would've decreased to $7.5 million had they waited until December 15th. Fuente thanked the Hokies faithful for his time there, and currently sits with a career record of 69-54, including his four seasons as head coach of the Memphis Tigers. He took over the Hokies to replace Frank Beamer, with his best season coming in 2014 with a 10-win season. With this move coming mid-season, defensive line coach J.C. Price will serve as the interim head coach.
Getzlaf Makes History in Ducks' Win; Jets Slow Down Oilers
The Anaheim Ducks not only jumped in to first place in the Pacific Division on Tuesday night, but they also enjoyed some history during a 3-2 overtime win over the Washington Capitals. Ryan Getzlaf reached 1,000 career points with a first period assist highlighting the Ducks' sixth straight home victory. Trevor Zegras got the game-winner in overtime, while Troy Terry extended his point streak to 15 games. The Ducks have not lost at home since October 31st, and they were able to slow down a high powered offensive team thanks to John Gibson's 28 saves. Meanwhile, the Winnipeg Jets used a big second period, where they scored three times to pull away for a 5-2 win over the Edmonton Oilers. Nikolaj Ehlers, Pierre-Luc Dubois, and Mark Scheifele all scored during those 20 minutes, while Adam Lowry and Kyle Connor also found the back of the net on the night. The Jets finish off their seven-game homestand with a 5-1-1 record, in part thanks to Connor Hellebuyck stopping 32 shots from an elite offensive team.
Other key scores saw Timo Meier net a goal and an assist as the San Jose Sharks skated past the Minnesota Wild, 4-1, on the road. Cam Atkinson scored 45 seconds in to overtime to lift the Philadelphia Flyers over the Calgary Flames, 2-1, at home. The Florida Panthers lost Aleksander Barkov to a knee injury, but still cruised to a 6-1 rout of the New York Islanders. And the Arizona Coyotes stunned the St. Louis Blues with their second win of the season, upsetting the home team, 3-2, in St. Louis.
Ravens Release Veteran Le'Veon Bell
The rotation of running backs for the Baltimore Ravens took another move on Tuesday when they released veteran Le'Veon Bell after just five games. Bell was officially just placed on waivers and will become a free agent if not claimed by another team, as he struggled during his short time with the Ravens. During those five games, the 29-year-old averaged a career-worst 2.7 yards per carry, but did find the end zone twice. With the likes of Latavius Murray, Devonta Freeman, and Ty'Shon Williams helping the Ravens move on from injuries to J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards, Baltimore was able to move on from a guy that did not have more than 48 yards rushing in a single game this season. Bell took to Twitter to address this move, stating "this hurts," but showed his love for the organization giving him a chance.
Giants' Kapler, Rays' Cash Named Managers of The Year
Award week continued on in Major League Baseball with the Managers of The Year getting announced on Tuesday, including the National League award going to Gabe Kapler of the San Francisco Giants. This is more than well deserved after the Giants shocked the baseball world by totaling 107 victories, winning the NL West after coming in to the season with 40-1 odds to win the division. Kapler received 28 of the 30 first-place votes, beating out Mike Shildt of the St. Louis Cardinals, who is now without a job, and Craig Counsell of the Milwaukee Brewers. The Giants went on to fall in a thrilling five-game NLDS to the Los Angeles Dodgers, but that does not take away the fact that they ranked second in run differential, fourth in OPS, and fourth in team ERA.
Meanwhile, the American League award went to Kevin Cash of the Tampa Bay Rays over Scott Servais of the Seattle Mariners, Charlie Montoyo of the Toronto Blue Jays, Dusty Baker of the Houston Astros, and Alex Cora of the Boston Red Sox. Cash got 19 of the 30 first-place votes, as all of the top five options received at least a couple of those in a closer race for this honor. The Rays were led to a second consecutive American League East Title, but fell short of their second straight World Series berth in the ALDS against the Astros. Their manager becomes the second in major league history to win this award in two straight seasons, joining Bobby Cox of the Atlanta Braves in 2004 and 2005. In his seventh season with the Rays, Cash led them to the third-most wins in baseball at 100 and the third-highest run differential in the majors.
Angels Add Syndergaard on One-Year Contract
Thor is moving on from the New York Mets for the first time in his career, as the Los Angeles Angels agreed to a one-year deal with pitcher Noah Syndergaard on Tuesday. The deal is worth $21 million, moving the 29-year-old from the Mets, where he spent the first seven years of his major league career. Although, the former All-Star has only pitched two innings since 2019 due to Tommy John Surgery, so it is not certain what the Angels will be getting. He joins a rotation that needs help after being one of the worst in the majors despite having MVP favorite Shohei Ohtani. The hitter/pitcher threw 131 innings, but no other Angel starter surpassed 100 last year. The 6-foot-6 Syndergaard has posted a 3.32 ERA over 718 innings in his career, and could bring some quality production if he is even close to what he was. The right-hander was a key part of the Mets' 2015 World Series run, posting a 2.60 ERA and striking out 218 batters over 183.2 innings.
Blue Jays Lock in Berrios With Extension
The Toronto Blue Jays acquired starting pitcher Jose Berrios at the Trade Deadline this past season, and they clearly appreciated what they got out of that deal. They put their money where their mouth is on Tuesday, signing the right-hander to a seven-year contract extension that is worth $131 million. The deal for the 27-year-old is pending a physical, but once confirmed, he will give that Blue Jays rotation a spark for years to come. After joining the team in 2021, he went 5-4 with a 3.58 ERA over 12 starts, but Toronto fell just short of the American League Wild Card Game on the final day of the regular season. Combined with the Twins, he went 12-9 overall last season with a career-best 3.52 ERA and 204 strikeouts. The two-time All-Star has gone 60-47 over his major league career with a 4.04 ERA over six years and was set to become a free agent after the 2022 season.