The New Orleans Pelicans fell for the hype of Steph Curry's return to the floor in Game 2, but his return to the starting lineup did not phase them in Game 3. Anthony Davis went off for 33 points and 18 rebounds at home, as the Pelicans got on the board in the series with a 119-100 rout of the Golden State Warriors on Friday night. The big man's performance helped the Pelicans outscore the Warriors, 54-36, in the paint, as well as out-rebound them, 54-44. Rajon Rondo gave him some words of advice, telling the star to "take a nap and think about 50" which clearly worked. Rondo had himself a productive night with 21 assists, while Jrue Holiday scored 21 points, and Ian Clark had 18 against his former team. Rondo has gotten in to it with Draymond Green twice now in this series, including a shoving match in the first quarter on Friday. Klay Thompson led the way with 26 points, while Curry had 19 points in his return to the starting lineup for the Warriors, who trailed by as many as 26 in the loss. They will look to bounce back in Sunday afternoon's Game 4. Meanwhile, the Houston Rockets had their way with the Utah Jazz in a 113-92 blowout on the road for a 2-1 series lead. Eric Gordon and James Harden had 25 points apiece, while the bearded star added 12 assists on the night. Chris Paul chipped in with 15 points, seven rebounds, and six assists in the Rockets' third win in Utah this season. The Jazz's offense struggled, led by Royce O'Neale's 17 points, Alec Burks' 14, and Rudy Gobert's 12 points and nine rebounds. On the defensive end, they gave up 70 points by halftime and were never able to recover. They will host Game 4 of the series on Sunday night.
Lightning, Golden Knights Inch Closer to Conference Finals
The Tampa Bay Lightning and Las Vegas Golden Knights moved one step closer to the Conference Finals in their respective conferences. First, Dan Girardi scored just 3:18 into overtime to give the Tampa Bay Lightning a 4-3 win in Boston over the Bruins for a comfortable 3-1 series lead. The Lightning did lead 2-0, before the Bruins rallied with three straight goals in a game that featured, yes, another face-licking from Brad Marchand. His victim this time around was Ryan Callahan in the second period, as he became the second player to receive this tactic from Marchand. The Bruins' three unanswered goals included a shorthanded tally from Patrice Bergeron, before Steven Stamkos tied things up with seven minutes left in regulation. The Lightning can close out the series in the fifth game back at home on Sunday night. The Las Vegas Golden Knights have suffered their first losses of the postseason in this second-round series, but they took the lead on Friday night with a 5-3 victory over the San Jose Sharks on their home ice. Alex Tuch scored twice, while James Neal, Erik Haula, and Jonathan Marchessault all found the back of the net in the win. Marc-Andre Fleury made 27 saves for the Knights, who led by a score of 4-0 in this one. The Sharks would make things interesting by scoring three times in the second period behind goals from Kevin Lebanc, Tomas Hertl, and Mikael Boedker. The Knights will hit the road for Game 6 on Sunday looking to end the series at the SAP Center in San Jose.
Dodgers, Pujols Have Historic Friday Night
Two different spots in Major League Baseball made some history on Friday night, including in the series opener in Mexico. The Los Angeles Dodgers needed four pitchers to combine for a no-hitter in a 4-0 shutout of the San Diego Padres. Rookie Walker Buehler lasted six innings to get things started for the Dodgers, before relievers Tony Cingrani and Yimi Garcia kept the Padres out of the hit column, and Adam Liberatore closed things out with a perfect ninth inning. Buehler walked three batters in his start while improving to 2-0 on the season, as the Dodgers finished off the 23rd no-hitter in franchise history. Enrique Hernandez and Chris Taylor both went deep to support the Dodgers' no-hit effort. This could be the performance that jump-starts their season, as Los Angeles sits two games under .500, with two more games against the Padres in Mexico this weekend. Meanwhile, Albert Pujols also took his place in the MLB record books, recording his 3,000th career hit in the Los Angeles Angels' 5-0 win over the Seattle Mariners. The former St. Louis Cardinal became the 32nd player in MLB history to reach the plateau, and the fourth to do so with 600 career home runs. The first baseman singled the opposite way in the fifth inning, as the game was delayed for a celebration involving all of his teammates. Pujols would add another hit with a two-run single in the ninth inning, passing Roberto Clemente on the all-time hit list.. Along with Pujols's big hit, the Angels also stayed within a game of the Houston Astros in the AL West with a shutout of a very good Mariners team.