Wednesday, November 30, 2016

NHL Recap: San Jose Sharks (4) vs. Los Angeles Kings (1) - 11/30/2016

NHL Recap: San Jose Sharks (4) vs. Los Angeles Kings (1) - Date: 11/30/2016 Although the San Jose Sharks and the Los Angeles Kings have one of the NHL's liveliest rivalries, the ice has been tilted decidedly toward the north in the past 14 months. Particularly when the clubs meet down south at Staples Center, where the Sharks have made themselves at home. Logan Couture had two goals and an assist, Ryan Carpenter scored his first NHL goal and San Jose extended its recent mastery over the Kings with a 4-1 victory Wednesday night. Kevin Labanc also scored and Martin Jones made 26 saves against his former team in the Pacific Division-leading Sharks' fifth win in six games. Couture and Carpenter scored 30 seconds apart in the final minute of the first period, and Los Angeles couldn't recover from that defensive lapse.'' Anytime we play LA, there's no speeches needed,'' San Jose coach Peter DeBoer said. & #39;'We know it's going to be a hard game, and our guys respond to the challenge.'' They also make themselves at home in downtown Los Angeles. Free Sports Picks Daily. The Sharks won at Staples Center for the sixth consecutive time, including three playoff victories last spring. San Jose ousted the Kings in the first round on the way to the Stanley Cup Final, and the Sharks' control over their oldest rival has continued this fall with two regular season victories.'' They play tough in this building,'' Couture said. ''They come out with energy. Free NHL Hockey Picks. They're physical. Sports Betting Profit. They're big. Profitable NHL Hockey Handicappers. They'r e strong. Sports Handicapping Software. They're difficult to play against, (but) this is how we played last year down the stretch and into the playoffs. We get up on teams, (and) it's tough for teams to come back. We defend well, and (Jones) makes big saves and we walk out with the win.'' Couture, who sharply criticized the Kings and Norris Trophy-winning defenseman Drew Doughty last year after their playoff series ended, added an empty-net goal. He has only two multipoint games this year - and both were against the Kings. Doughty tried and failed to keep Couture's late clearance from settling in the Kings' empty net.'' I saw the replay and got a little chuckle out of it,'' Couture said. ''He's a special player, a guy I see all the time in the summer. It's always fun to play the best players in the world, and it's fun we get to play him all the time.'' Dustin Brown scored for the Kings, whose five-game winning streak ended with another frustrating night against their upstate rivals. Peter Budaj stopped 20 shots in Los Angeles' first home loss in seven games since Nov. 1.'' We know they're a good team,'' Gaborik said. ''It was a tight game out there at times, but they had a few odd-man rushes which we normally don't give up. Hopefully our game will get better and better.'' After Labanc converted Couture's pass on a 2-on-1 break to open the scoring, Couture got his team-leading eighth goal in the final minute of the Sharks' three-goal first period. Carpenter, an AHL All-Star last season while leading San Jose's top affiliate in scoring, found the net in his fourth NHL game over two seasons - although Budaj probably should have stopped the shot between his legs. Joel Ward had two assists in the sequence for the Sharks. Brown finally got t he Kings on the board early in the second period, roofing a rebound of Gaborik's shot during a power play for his fourth goal. NOTES: Gaborik played his second game of the season and got his first regular season point since Feb. 12. He missed Los Angeles' first 21 games with a broken foot. ... San Jose beat Los Angeles 2-1 on opening night at the Shark Tank. ... Los Angeles had the previous three days off. D Matt Greene returned to the lineup and Tom Gilbert was scratched. UP NEXTSharks: Host Canadiens on Friday night. Kings: At Coyotes on Thursday night.

NCAAB Recap: Saint Marys CA (66) vs. Stanford (51) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Saint Marys CA (66) vs. Stanford (51) - Date: 11/30/2016 Calvin Hermanson scored a career-high 25 points and knocked down a career-best seven 3-pointers, and No. 12 Saint Mary's used a big second half to beat Stanford 66-51 on Wednesday night and stay undefeated. Jock Landale had 13 points and eight rebounds while playing in foul trouble for the sharp-passing Gaels (6-0). Grant Verhoeven scored 12 points and Robert Cartwright added 10 for Stanford (6-2), under first-year coach Jerod Haase, is off to its best start in five seasons. Picks and Parlays. The Cardinal began 10-1 in 2011-12. Hermanson hit five of his 3s in the second half. After Stanford pulled within 48-45 on two free throws by Cartwright, Hermanson and Kyle Clark hit consecutive 3-pointers and Saint Mary's took off with a 16-3 run. Saint Mary's opened the second ha lf on a 12-0 run, getting two quick layups from Landale and Naar's 3-pointer for a 38-30 lead at the 15:36 mark as Stanford missed its first seven shots after intermission. Sheffield hit a jumper at 15:14 for Stanford's first points. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. The Gaels needed a strong start after the break to keep its impressive early record unblemished. Sports Handicapping Monitor. The teams finished even on rebounds with 29 apiece, but Stanford went 3 for 12 from beyond the arc and shot 38.2 percent for the game to 55.1 percent by Saint Mary's. Saint Mary's won its first five games by an average of 18 points. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Gaels are picked to win the West Coast Conference after sharing the regular-season title last season with perennial power Gonzaga. Handicapper Directory. The Cardinal, who lost 78-61 on Saint Mary's home floor in McKeon Pavilion last year, then hung tough until the Gaels' barrage of late 3s - and 11 of 27 from long range overall, 7 of 9 by Hermanson. NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. This marked the 57th meeting between the Bay Area programs. TIP-INSSaint Mary's: Landale made 6 of 8 shots and is now 51 for 67 - a 76 percent clip. ... The Gaels had 21 assists on 27 baskets, giving them 120 assists on 176 field goals this season. Stanford: Warriors owner and Stanford fan Joe Lacob sat courtside. ... Haase is 2-9 all-time against ranked opponents. ... The Cardinal dropped to 183-81 all-time against current members of the WCC. This was the first visit by a WCC team to Maples Pavilion since a win over Loyola Marymount on Dec. 1 7, 2014. UP NEXTSaint Mary's: The Gaels have a lengthy layoff before hosting University of Texas at Arlington on Dec. 8. Stanford: The Cardinal face back-to-back ranked opponents, traveling to face Haase's old Kansas team - ranked fourth - on Saturday.---More AP college basketball: www.collegebasketball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25.

NCAAB Recap: USC (76) vs. San Diego (55) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: USC (76) vs. San Diego (55) - Date: 11/30/2016 Bennie Boatwright hobbled out of Jenny Craig Pavilion on crutches and his sprained left knee in a brace, an injury that put a damper on Southern California's 76-55 victory against San Diego and left the undefeated Trojans wondering how long they'll be without their second-leading scorer. Sports Handicapper King. The 6-foot-10 sophomore forward was hurt when he collided with USD's Juwan Gray while taking a shot just three minutes in. Boatwright stayed on the floor for a few minutes while being tended to and had to be helped to the bench. He also had to be helped into the locker room at halftime. Coach Andy Enfield said Boatwright will have an MRI exam on Thursday.'' We're hoping it's just a sprain,'' Enfield said. ''We're hoping for the best. He'll certainly be out for a while. We're hoping it's a few weeks vs. the season.'' Chimezie Metu had 19 points and 13 rebounds, and Elijah Stewart scored 15 points for the Trojans (7-0), who led the whole way in beating the Toreros for the second straight season. De'Anthony Melton added 14. Boatwright, who missed the first two games with back spasms, was averaging 13.5 points.'' It has an effect because our rotation is not the same as it would be with him in there. He's a unique player, with his size and his guard skills,'' Enfield added. ''We had to go small, and then we went big. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. Thank goodness Chimezie is skilled enough to play both front-line positions. ... Our players just have to step up.'' Metu agreed.'' It's one less scoring option on offense. At times when we didn't have him it was hard for us to score. We're just going to have to work through it.'' Olin Carter III scored 21 for USD, while Brett Bailey had 17 and Tyler Williams 10. Winning Sports Handicappers. TALL TROJANUSC was too big and talented for the Toreros, particularly the 6-foot-11 Metu, who was 9 of 11 from the floor. He dominated on the boards and scored eight of the Trojans' final 12 points of the first half en route to a 43-31 lead. He had a tip-in off a rebound, a turnaround jumper, a jump hook and a slam dunk off a rebound. NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The teams combined to miss 14 straight shots early in the second half, each going about six minutes without scoring. Metu broke the Trojans' drought with a slam dunk on an alley-oop pass from Jordan McLaughlin. BIG PICTUREUSC: The Trojans are off to their best start since going 8-0 to open th e 2000-01 season. Basketball Predictions. They finished 24-10 after reaching the Elite Eight. USD: The Toreros dropped to 0-6 all-time against the Trojans. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. The Toreros opened last season at USC, losing 83-45. TOREROS''We've just got to continue to chop wood,'' San Diego coach Lamont Smith said. ''We've got to have our freshmen grow up. Right now they haven't played at a high enough clip, and with half our team being freshmen, they've got to produce.'' UP NEXTUSC plays BYU in the Hoophall LA game at Staples Center on Saturday. The game is part of a doubleheader, with No. 8 Gonzaga and 16th-ranked Arizona playing the first game. USC is 6-3 all-time against BYU. USD travels to face Northern Arizona on Saturday.

NBA Recap: Indiana Pacers (109) vs. Portland Trail Blazers (131) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: Indiana Pacers (109) vs. Portland Trail Blazers (131) - Date: 11/30/2016 Damian Lillard had 28 points and 10 assists, and the Portland Trail Blazers beat the Indiana Pacers and former coach Nate McMillan 131-109 on Wednesday night. Maurice Harkless added 23 points for the Blazers, who led by as many as 28 in their fifth consecutive victory over the Pacers. Soccer Handicappers. The Trail Blazers had lost six of their last eight games as they've struggled to find consistency on defense. Portland was coming off a 130-114 loss at home to the Houston Rockets on Sunday. Jeff Teague led Indiana with 25 points, while Myles Turner had 19 points and 10 rebounds. It was the first of a five-game road swing for the Pacers, who had won two straight. Portland was still missing forward Al-Farouq Aminu, who has been out for more than two weeks with a calf injury. But there a re signs that Aminu could return soon, possibly even by Sunday against the Miami Heat. NBA Basketball Handicappers. The Pacers were without All-Star Paul George for the third consecutive game and seventh overall due to a sore left ankle. Portland took a 22-13 lead after Meyers Leonard's 3-pointer. Mason Plumlee's alley-oop dunk from CJ McCollum put Portland up 39-27 and Evan Turner, who has been looking more comfortable with the Blazers in the last half-dozen games, made a 3-pointer to push the lead to 46-29. Lillard, who had just four points in the first quarter, got rolling in the final 7 minutes of the second with 14 and the Blazers led 73-58 at halftime. Portland shot 63 percent in the first half. In the third quarter it was McCollum's turn. After managing just four points in the first half, McCollum had 15 in the third period and the Blazers went up 109-83 heading into the fourth. He finished with 19 points. It was the first Portland appearance for McMillan since he became head coach of the Pacers. McMillan was promoted in the offseason after the Pacers dismissed Frank Vogel. McMillan coached the Blazers from 2005-12. Free Picks and Parlays. The latter part of his tenure was marked by the devastating injuries to top draft pick Greg Oden and later to star guard Brandon Roy. McMillan said before the game that he remembers Portland fondly as a ''great basketball town.'' He said his second stint as a head coach really can't be compared to the first because with the Blazers he was in a rebuilding mode, while with the Pacers he's got a more mature and seasoned squad.'' It's going to be about winning and doing things the right way,'' McMillan said about his new head coaching gig. ''I'm looking forward to the opportunity.'' TIP INSPacers: McMillan was gr eeted with warm applause by fans at the Moda Center. He joked that his nickname was no longer ''Sarge'' as it was in Portland. ... Joe Young and Aaron Brooks both played for the Oregon Ducks. Free NBA Basketball Picks. Trail Blazers: Harkless has scored 15 or more points in three straight games for the first time with the Blazers. ... Portland set season highs with 131 points and 73 in the first half. UP NEXTThe Pacers visit the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday. Winning Sports Picks Who You Should Follow. The Trail Blazers host the Miami Heat on Saturday.

NCAAB Recap: Ohio State (61) vs. Virginia (63) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Ohio State (61) vs. Virginia (63) - Date: 11/30/2016 London Perrantes knew he wasn't playing well, and if he had any doubt whatsoever, coach Tony Bennett let him know.'' I got after him,'' Bennett said Wednesday night after Perrantes scored 15 of his 19 points in the second half and No. 7 Virginia overcame a sloppy performance and rallied past Ohio State 63-61 on Wednesday night in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. ''I did, and he responded.'' Perrantes, who had three turnovers by halftime, hit three 3-pointers in the second half to spark the Cavaliers' surge.'' I knew I wasn't playing to the best of my ability or even anywhere close,'' the senior point guard and four-year starter said. ''I'm glad he kind of got into me. Sports Handicappers Rankings. That's the most I got ripped by him sinc e I've been here and it sparked us all.'' Devon Hall added 12 points for the Cavaliers (7-0), who trailed by as many as 16 points in the first half and didn't take the lead for good until Marial Shayok's baseline runner made it 59-57 with 1:58 remaining. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Buckeyes (6-1) trailed 63-61 when Shayok missed two free throws with 10.5 seconds left. Coach Thad Matta called a timeout with 6.5 seconds to play, but JaQuan Lyle couldn't find an open teammate as the clock ran down and launched a 3-point try that missed badly.'' I hope we take a lot from it because I told them after the game, `We're close, but we're not there yet,''' Matta said. As the Cavaliers rallied in the second half and the crowd whipped into a frenzy, the Buckeyes hurt their chances with 11 of their season-high 20 turnov ers, some of them more caused by carelessness than pressure from Virginia, and they almost all proved costly.'' As great teams do, they capitalized on every mistake we made down the stretch,'' Matta said. Jae'Sean Tate led Ohio State with 14 points and Lyle had 12. BIG PICTUREOhio State: The Buckeyes are knocking on the door of the Top 25 with only one senior on their roster in forward Marc Loving, their third-leading scorer. Matta has lots to work with, especially in Tate, an athletic, and impressive sophomores C. J. Jackson and Lyle, and win or lose, tight games in packed arenas like John Paul Jones Arena can only help Ohio State as it moved toward play in the rugged Big Ten. Virginia: It's when outside shots aren't falling that the Cavaliers will most miss forward Austin Nichols, a transfer from Memphis who was eligible this season, but was kicked off the team after the second game for a violation of team rules. Nichols was not only a gifted in side scorer, but a rebounder and rim-protector on defense and when the Buckeyes drove mercilessly to the basket in the first half, Virginia had no answer, getting outscored 22-4 in the paint in the half. Virginia closed the margin after the break, and finished trailed 32-18 in the paint. SPARKPLUGThe Buckeyes' Jackson found his stroke, hitting three 3-pointers in four tries. He came into the game 1 of 11 from beyond the arc. UNSUNG HEROVirginia's Darius Thompson scored just four points, but both baskets came during an 11-0 run to begin the second half, turning a 36-24 halftime deficit into a 36-35 Buckeyes' lead. NFL Handicappers. Thompson finished with three rebounds, three assists, three blocks and two steals. HE SAID IT''I told him, `Last year it was Brogdon. NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. This year it's you.'' ' - Matta on a postgame exchange with Perrantes, the Cavaliers unquestioned leader who has assumed the role occupied last season by Malcolm Brogdon, now with the Milwaukee Bucks in the NBA. UP NEXTOhio State returns home to face Fairleigh Dickinson on Saturday and then Florida Atlantic before playing host to Connecticut next Saturday. Virginia faces its third Power Five conference school in four games when No. 25 West Virginia visits John Paul Jones Arena on Saturday.---More AP college basketball: http://collegebasketball.ap.org---Follow Hank on Twitter: www.twitter.com/hankkurzjr

NCAAB Recap: North Carolina (67) vs. Indiana (76) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: North Carolina (67) vs. Indiana (76) - Date: 11/30/2016 OG Anunoby scored 16 points, James Blackmon Jr. had 14 and Robert Johnson added 11 Wednesday night, leading No. 13 Indiana past No. 3 North Carolina 76-67 in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge. Free Tennis Picks. The Hoosiers (5-1) have won two straight since last week's stunning loss to little-known IPFW. In that game, Johnson struggled, Blackmon injured his knee and Anunoby tried to play through an illness. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. This time, they helped Indiana start fast and fend off the Tar Heels' second-half charges to close it out. Anunoby was injured at the end of the game and needed help to get to the locker room. Number #1 Sports Handica pping Service. There was no immediate word on what Anunoby's injury was though he appeared to land awkwardly after a dunk with 1:36 to go.'' The way he played tonight is the way we expect him (Anunoby) to play on a consistent basis,'' Johnson said. ''The way he came out determined to get on the glass, that really got him going.'' North Carolina (7-1), which trailed for a total of 16 seconds during its four-game trip to Hawaii, never led and spent most of the game trailing by double digits. Indiana jumped to a 17-7 lead, extended the margin to 28-11 and never allowed the Tar Heels to get closer than 61-57 with 4:52 to play. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Tar Heels were led by Justin Jackson with 21 points and Kennedy Meeks with 10. North Carolina was 13 of 22 on free throws.'' One team really played right from the get-go and the other team did not, and that was us,'' coach Roy Williams said. ''We weren't ready for the intensity, the enthusiasm, anything that you want to talk about in the first half.'' BIG PICTURENorth Carolina: The curse of No. 3 continues. With Kansas losing on opening night, Indiana losing last week and now the Tar Heels falling, three of the four teams ranked No. 3 this season have lost in their first appearance in that spot. Indiana: Coach Tom Crean promised to fix the flaws from last week's loss. He did, and the Hoosiers delivered one of the most notable wins of his Indiana tenure. Now the Hoosiers must prove they can keep playing this way over the long haul. UP NEXTNorth Carolina: The Tar Heels host Radford on Sunday. After three straight games against Power-5 conference teams, the Tar Heels will try to rebound against a Big South foe. Indiana: The Hoosiers host SIU-Edwardsville on Friday. With two top-five wins on the resume , the Hoosiers begin a stretch of three straight games against lower level opponents.---More AP college basketball: www.collegebasketball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25.

NBA Recap: Atlanta Hawks (107) vs. Phoenix Suns (109) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: Atlanta Hawks (107) vs. Phoenix Suns (109) - Date: 11/30/2016 Brandon Knight scored 23 points off the bench and Phoenix reserves combined for 54 as the Suns held off the slumping Atlanta Hawks 109-107 thanks to a key fourth-quarter run Wednesday night. Eric Bledsoe's bank shot with 28.4 seconds left gave the Suns a 104-99 lead and all but sealed Atlanta's fourth consecutive defeat. Bledsoe, who shot 5 for 17 from the field, pounded the scorer's table in celebration. Jared Dudley and P. J. Best Sports Handicappers in the World. Tucker added 17 points apiece for the Suns, who had lost four of five. Leandro Barbosa made baskets on three straight possessions midway through the fourth quarter to give Phoenix an 89-84 advantage, part of an 11-0 run. NBA Basketball Handicappers. The Hawks cut it to 96-95 with 2:50 to play on Thabo Sefolosha's 17-footer. Dennis Schroder scored 14 of his 31 points in the fourth. Kent Bazemore had 22 points, Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 21 and Dwight Howard added 17 points with 14 rebounds for Atlanta. Game Fixing. The Suns turned a five-point deficit at the 5:12 mark of the first quarter into a 36-27 lead to start the second. Knight scored 14 points in 5 minutes off the bench in the first quarter and Tucker had nine - seven in the first 2 minutes of the game. Free NBA Basketball Picks. The Suns took a 47-33 lead, their largest of the first half, when Tucker scored and made a free throw in the second quarter. But the Hawks responded, going on a 10-0 run over the final 2:37 of the period. Hardaway hit two 3-pointers and flew in for a dunk during that stretch, finishing the first half with 12 points. Atlanta too k a brief one-point lead early in the third, but the Suns went ahead 66-61 on Devin Booker's 3-pointer with 5:33 to go. Sports Handicapper King. The teams traded leads for the next 4 minutes before the Suns ended the quarter with a 77-75 lead. Profitable NBA Basketball Handicappers. TIP-INSHawks: F Paul Millsap was held out with a left hip injury, and F/C Tiago Splitter (right calf strain) also did not play. Mike Muscala started in Millsap's place. ... The Hawks shot 10 free throws to 25 for the Suns. ... Hardaway was knocked into the scorer's table chasing down a loose ball in the fourth quarter but stayed in the game. Suns: F T. J. Warren (minor head injury) did not play and has missed the past six games. ... Dudley crashed to the floor in front of the Suns' bench after a hard foul on Sefolosha in the third quarter, but got up and made two of three free throws right afterward. BLEDSOE'S BURDENBledsoe had earlier expressed that it's his fault the Suns are not winning much, despite his most recent stretch of five games before Wednesday in which he averaged 26 points, seven rebounds and 6.6 assists. Phoenix had one win in that span. ''Bledsoe takes a lot of things to heart,'' coach Earl Watson said. ''He's very purposeful with his words. ... It's going to be transparent. We understand Bled's purpose, and his commitment to this team is second to none.'' BUDENHOLZER'S BACKHawks coach Mike Budenholzer is from Holbrook, Arizona, a town of around 5,000 about 185 miles northeast of Phoenix. He wasn't expecting a big turnout of townsfolk Wednesday night, citing a midweek game after a holiday and no bus service as the reasons. UP NEXTHawks: Host the Detroit Pistons on Friday night and play three of the next four at home. Suns: At the Golden State Warriors on Saturday, the first of a two-game road trip.

NBA Recap: Miami Heat (106) vs. Denver Nuggets (98) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: Miami Heat (106) vs. Denver Nuggets (98) - Date: 11/30/2016 Hassan Whiteside had another big game with 25 points, 16 rebounds and four blocks, lifting the Miami Heat over the Denver Nuggets 106-98 on Wednesday night. Wayne Ellington scored 22 points and Tyler Johnson returned after missing one game to get 18 points and seven assists for Miami. Goran Dragic had 16 points and seven assists for the Heat, who have more wins on the road (four) than at home (two). Nikola Jokic came off the bench with 17 points and 14 rebounds for Denver, which was outscored 31-18 in the fourth quarter. Miami went on an 11-0 run early in the fourth to lead for good. Ellington hit four 3-pointers in the period and his last put the Heat up 10 with 2:25 left. Jamal Murray's two 3-pointers got the Nuggets within five, but the Heat held on. Wilson Chandler and Danilo Gallinari also scored 17 points each for the Nuggets. Profitable Sports Handicappers. TIP-INSHeat: G Dion Waiters was diagnosed with a torn muscle in his thigh. An MRI revealed a tear of the pectineus muscle, located in the front part of the upper and inner thigh. Coach Erik Spoelstra said Waiters, who stayed in Miami, will be re-evaluated in two weeks after rehab and treatment. ... Justise Winslow also remained in Miami to work on his conditioning. He has missed nine games with a sore left wrist. Nuggets: G Will Barton missed his second game in a row due to soreness in his left ankle. Barton missed nine games after spraining the ankle, then returned for three before missing another for personal reasons. ... Darrell Arthur did not dress because of illness. ON GUARDJohnson was reluctant to wear a mouth guard, but after getting an implant knocked out against Detroit last week and having oral surgery Monday, he understood the need to protect his teeth.'' I can't miss games because I'm missing teeth,'' he said. ''My goal is to play all 82 and now I'm going to have to change it up and wear the mouthpiece.'' The mouth guard didn't bother him in the first quarter when he had two dunks, including a slam at the quarter buzzer that pulled Miami within 30-28. UP NEXTHeat: At Utah on Thursday night. Nuggets: Host Houston on Friday night.

NBA Recap: Washington Wizards (115) vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (126) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: Washington Wizards (115) vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (126) - Date: 11/30/2016 Russell Westbrook scored 14 of his 35 points in overtime and posted his fourth consecutive triple-double to help the Oklahoma City Thunder defeat the Washington Wizards 126-115 on Wednesday night. Westbrook added 14 rebounds and 11 assists for his ninth triple-double this season and the 46th of his career. Winning Sports Picks Who You Should Follow. The Thunder have won all four games during his triple-double streak, and he heads into December averaging a triple-double through 20 games this season. Former Thunder coach Scott Brooks returned as Washington's coach, and the Oklahoma City crowd greeted him warmly. Brooks coached the Thunder for seven years and led them to the Western Conference Finals three times and the NBA Finals once. Bradley Beal scored 31 points, John Wall had 15 points and 15 assists, and Marcin Gortat added 12 points and 11 rebounds for the Wizards, who had won three of four. Profitable NBA Basketball Handicappers. The Thunder led by 16 early. A block by Domantas Sabonis led to a fast break dunk by Steven Adams that put the Thunder up 74-62 in the third quarter and prompted Brooks to call a timeout. NHL Handicappers. The Wizards closed the quarter strong and tied the score at 84 heading into the fourth. NBA Basketball Handicappers. The Wizards took control before the Thunder rallied. A 3-pointer and a dunk by Victor Oladipo cut Washington's lead to one, and the assist gave Westbrook his triple-double. He is averaging more than 30 points per game. Westbrook's 3 with 8.5 seconds left in regulation tied the score at 105, and Washington's Otto Porter missed a short jumper at the buzzer. Sports Picks. The Thunder shot 5 of 7 from the field in the extra period.---TIP-INSWizards: C Ian Mahinmi sat out with a sore right knee. ... Washington missed five of its first seven free throws. ... Markieff Morris was issued a technical foul in the third quarter. Free NBA Basketball Picks. Thunder: Oladipo hit a long 2-point jumper as time expired in the first quarter to give Oklahoma City a 32-19 lead. ... Thunder shot 56.5 percent in the first. ... Westbrook was called for a technical foul with 6:09 to play. ... Adams left the game briefly in the first half after taking an elbow to the face. STAT LINESThe Thunder are 7-2 this season when Westbrook gets a triple-double. They have won 25 of their last 27 games over the past two seasons when he accomplishes the feat. UP NEXTThe Wizards visit th e San Antonio Spurs on Friday. The Thunder host the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday.---Follow Cliff Brunt on Twitter: www.twitter.com/CliffBruntAP.

NCAAB Recap: Louisiana Tech (59) vs. California (68) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Louisiana Tech (59) vs. California (68) - Date: 11/30/2016 Ivan Rabb scored five of his career-high 25 points in overtime and California held on to beat Louisiana Tech 68-59 on Wednesday night. All of Rabb's points in overtime came on free throws after the Golden Bears didn't go to the line at all in the second half. Rabb shot 9 of 12 and added a season-high 13 rebounds for his fourth consecutive double-double after missing two games with a toe injury. California made only one basket in overtime - Grant Mullins' 3-pointer - but went 8 of 12 on free throws while holding Louisiana Tech to two points. Kingsley Okoroh had nine points, 12 rebounds and matched his career-high with five blocks as California (5-1) extended its winning streak at Haas Pavilion to 24 - two shy off the school record. Charlie Moore added 19 points. Erik McCree had 11 points and 11 rebounds for Louisiana Tech (3-3) after going scoreless in the first half. Derric Jean added 13 points, seven rebounds and six assists. California fed off Rabb's fast start and held a nine-point lead with 2:13 left in the first half before Louisiana Tech scored seven straight to pull within 31-29 at halftime. BIG PICTURELouisiana Tech: The Bulldogs showed some grit in taking the game to overtime after it looked like they were on the verge of being blown out early. Shooting 18 of 66 (27.3 percent) won't make it an easy pill to swallow, either. freepick. The good news is that the big three - McCree, Jacobi Boykins and Jean - continue to get to the basket fairly easily. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. The bad news is that redshirt senior Qiydar Davis might have suffered a season-ending knee injury. California: This is one that Bears coach Cuonzo Martin can 't be pleased with. Sports Handicapper King. The offense ran smoothly as long as Rabb was on the court but Cal went stagnant whenever he was on the bench. Rabb's performance is a good sign for the Bears because he'll be spending additional time in the post now that backup center Kameron Rooks is out for at least a month following arthroscopic surgery on his left knee earlier Wednesday. Okoroh will get extended minutes, too, until Rooks returns. UP NEXTLouisiana Tech: The Bulldogs return home to host Southeastern Louisiana on Saturday night. California: Hosts Alcorn State on Saturday before heading to Hawaii to play Princeton and Seton Hall in the Pearl Harbor Invitational.

NCAAB Recap: Nebraska (58) vs. Clemson (60) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Nebraska (58) vs. Clemson (60) - Date: 11/30/2016 Jaron Blossomgame had 15 points and Donte Grantham hit a tie-breaking free throw as Clemson held off a late Nebraska push for a 60-58 victory in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on Wednesday night. Winning Sports Handicappers. The Tigers (5-2) led 58-54 on Grantham's 3-pointer with 3:16 to go. But a Glynn Watson Jr. hit a straight-on three to tie things at 58 all. After Grantham hit the front end of a one-and-one, Watson missed a three-pointer and Anton Gill turned the ball over with 10 seconds left. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Cornhuskers (4-3) had a chance to tie at the end, but Tai Webster's runner in the lane bounced off the rim. Grantham finished with nine points and five rebounds for C lemson. Watson had a game-high 20 points and Webster scored 12. Ed Morrow had 10 points and 12 rebounds for Nebraska. Sports Betting Leads. THE BIG PICTURENebraska: The Cornhuskers showed speed, quick hands and a solid shooting touch in building a nine-point lead in the first half. What Nebraska did not display was a strong front-court game and it cost them in the second half. Its tallest players in 6-foot-11 Jordy Tshimanga and 6-8 Jack McVeigh had little impact early on with two shots combined. NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. They ended one of three from the field for three points. Clemson: The Tigers pledged a stronger early season performance to help build an NCAA resume. So far, it hasn't worked out that way. Clemson lost to Xavier and Oklahoma in an Orlando, Florida, tournament. Sports Handi capper Picks. The Tigers also went back to their shooting struggles, going 8 of 25 from the field in the first 20 minutes and making just two of their nine 3-pointers. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. Things picked up after halftime, as they hit five-of-six shots from behind the arc to hold off Nebraska. UP NEXTNebraska starts a two-game homestand on Saturday against South Dakota. Clemson continues its run of five in a row at home against Coppin State on Sunday.

NCAAB Recap: SMU (62) vs. Boise State (71) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: SMU (62) vs. Boise State (71) - Date: 11/30/2016 Chandler Hutchinson scored 21 points and Boise State used a big advantage from 3-point range to take down SMU 71-62 on Wednesday night. Handicappers Free Picks. The Broncos (4-3) made seven 3-pointers compared to one by the Mustangs (4-3), who went 1 of 11 from 3-point range. James Reid drilled four 3s and finished with 18 points, and Justinian Jessup made three 3s and had 11 points for Boise State. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. The Broncos went 7 of 21 from behind the arc and 14 of 19 from the foul line. Best Sports Picks of the Day. The Broncos held the Mustangs without a field goal for more than four minutes in the first half in turning a one-point deficit into a 28-14 lead that would never be relinquished. Boise State led 44-24 at halftime. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The closest SMU came was five points in the final minute. Ben Moore led SMU with 19 points and 14 rebounds. Semi Ojeleye added 15 points, which was hurt by 16 turnovers and 50 percent shooting from the foul line (11 of 22).

NCAAB Recap: Colorado State (72) vs. Colorado (58) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Colorado State (72) vs. Colorado (58) - Date: 11/30/2016 Emmanuel Omogbo scored 15 points, Nico Carvacho had 14 points, and Colorado State beat Colorado 72-58 on Wednesday night to win their fourth straight game. Devocio Butler added 13 points for Colorado State (6-1), which picked up its first road win of the season while handing its intrastate rival its first home loss of the season. Derrick White scored 17 points to lead Colorado (5-2), which shot 32.2 percent from the field. Winning Sports Picks Who You Should Follow. The Buffaloes made only three of 19 3-pointers while the Rams were 6 of 15 from beyond the arc. Building on a three-point halftime lead, the Rams got 3-pointers from Omogbo and Carvacho to help them pull out to a 40-31 lead. Colorado managed to narrow the gap but Colorado State kept hitting their free throws, including a pair by Che Bob with 4:35 left that gave the Rams a 56-49 lead. Moments later, J. D. Paige connected on a 3-pointer as part of a 7-0 spurt that pushed Colorado State's lead to 63-51 with 2:22 remaining and the Buffaloes did not threaten after that. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Rams led 30-27 at halftime, using an 11-2 burst late in the period to surge in front after trailing for most of the opening half. Omogbo fueled the surge, hitting a pair of free throws and making a dunk and a 3-pointer. BIG PICTUREColorado State: The Rams, who lost four of five starters from last season's team, got a confidence-boosting victory with a rare win over Colorado at the Coors Events Center. It was the 126th meeting between the schools and Colorado holds an 89-37 edge in the series. It was Colorado State's ninth win at Colorado in 62 games in Boulder. Colorado: It was a tough outing for the Buffaloes, who never seemed to find their offensive rhythm. It remains to be seen whether it was an aberration after a solid start to the season. UP NEXTColorado State: Comes off the road to begin a three-game home stand on Saturday against Wichita State. Colorado: Will try to rebound on the road, traveling to Portland University for a Saturday night game against the Pilots, who are coming off a win against Cal State Northridge.

NBA Recap: San Antonio Spurs (94) vs. Dallas Mavericks (87) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: San Antonio Spurs (94) vs. Dallas Mavericks (87) - Date: 11/30/2016 Patty Mills scored 15 of his team-high 23 points in the fourth quarter and Kawhi Leonard added 21 points, helping the San Antonio Spurs rally for a 94-87 win over the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night. San Antonio became just the third team to start the season 11-0 on the road, following last year's Warriors (14-0) and the 1969-70 Knicks (12-0). Wesley Matthews had a season-high 26 points for the Mavericks, and Harrison Barnes added 17. Dallas had a 60-47 lead in the third quarter after a 13-0 run in which the Spurs went 13 consecutive possessions and nearly seven minutes without a point. Top Rated Sports Handicappers. The Mavericks still led by eight with seven minutes to play, but Mills hit his first of three huge 3s in the quarter to start an 11-2 run . Leonard scored seven points in the run, and his 3 with 4:23 to play gave the Spurs their first lead since early in the third quarter at 80-79. Leonard had 18 points in the second half. With his team leading by one, Mills hit a 3 with 3:04 to play. After Matthews answered with a 3, Mills dialed up another and then hit a long jumper to make it 90-84 with 1:31 left. NBA Basketball Handicappers. The Mavericks lost to the Spurs 96-91 on Nov. 21, a game after which San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said his team showed ''a lack of humility, a lack of respect for the opponent.'' Popovich made wholesale substitutions midway through each of the first two quarters of this one, with only Leonard returning to action in either quarter. San Antonio built a 12-point lead in the second quarter but a late Mavs run cut the deficit to 43-40 at halftime. Barnes had 13 points and Matthews 12 in the first half. Free Picks and Parlays. TIP-INSSpurs: Pau Gasol and Manu Ginobili did not make the trip to Dallas, and Tony Parker was held out of action, all for rest. Rookie Nicolas Laprovittola got his first career start and Dewayne Dedmon made his first start as a Spur. ... San Antonio has won seven in a row against Dallas. Mavericks: Devin Harris returned after missing the first 16 games due to a right big toe sprain suffered in the team's final preseason game. He played 11 minutes and did not score. Coach Rick Carlisle said Harris' minutes would be restricted as he returns to form. ... Free NBA Basketball Picks. The team's three primary point guards (Harris, Deron Williams and J. J. Barea) have combined to play only 19 games. MISSING DIRKThe Mavericks announced Tuesday that forward Dirk Nowitzki would miss at least two games with his sore righ t Achilles tendon. Nowitzki has played only five of the team's 17 games this year and missed the teams' previous meeting in San Antonio nine days ago. Popovich expressed disappointment that the Mavericks star was not available once again.'' He's not just a beautiful player to watch, but his competitiveness is infectious,'' Popovich said. ''He takes every game seriously. He knows how to win; he knows how to lose. He's just a class act. Everything is more whole when he's around, that's for sure.'' UP NEXTSpurs: Return home for a rematch with the Washington Wizards on Friday night. Sports Handicapping Service Units Gained. The Spurs beat the Wizards 112-100 on Saturday. Mavericks: Travel to Charlotte for the second half of a back-to-back Thursday night. Dallas will face the Hornets again on Monday.

NCAAB Recap: Utah State (63) vs. BYU (77) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Utah State (63) vs. BYU (77) - Date: 11/30/2016 Eric Mika scored 20 points, L. J. Rose added 18 - combining for 28 points in the second half - and BYU turned back in-state rival Utah State 77-63 at a neutral site on Wednesday night. Best Sports Handicappers in the World. The Cougars (5-2) won their 11th straight at Vivint Smart Home Arena, where they have played at least once a year since 2007. It was their third straight win over the Aggies at the Arena and fifth-straight in the series. BYU led 37-31 at halftime and prevailed by hitting 21 of 25 free throws despite shooting 30 percent (8 of 27) from the field in the second half. Rose scored 16 of his points in the second half, making all three of his shots, including two 3-pointers, and 8 of 9 free throws. Yoeli Childs had 12 rebounds to go with nine points as BYU had a 55-31 advantage on the boards. NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Cougars' 23 offensive rebounds are the fifth most in school history. Jalen Moore had 15 points for Utah State (3-3), which was 6 of 11 from the line.

NHL Recap: Toronto Maple Leafs (0) vs. Calgary Flames (3) - 11/30/2016

NHL Recap: Toronto Maple Leafs (0) vs. Calgary Flames (3) - Date: 11/30/2016 Freddie Hamilton and Kris Versteeg scored in the first minute and Chad Johnson made 39 saves in the Calgary Flames' 3-0 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday night. Hamilton one-timed a centering pass from Micheal Ferland past Jhonas Enroth high on the glove side for his first of the season 19 seconds in. Profitable Sports Handicappers. Thirty seconds later, Versteeg buried his third of the season. Sean Monahan was initially stopped from the slot, but Enroth kicked the rebound to Versteeg. Calgary scored twice in the opening minute for the first time since March 11, 1987 against the Hartford Whalers. Profitable NHL Hockey Handicappers. The last time any NHL team did it was Philadelphia against the New York Isl anders on April 9, 2011. Johnson has started eight of the last 10 games, going 6-2-0 with a 1.50 goals-against average, a .951 save percentage and a career-best three shutouts. Matt Stajan also scored for Calgary. Enroth made 26 saves. NOTES: Toronto has lost 10 of its last 11 games in Calgary. ... Calgary's Johnny Gaudreau (broken finger) joined the team at the morning skate. He has missed nine games. UP NEXT: At Vancouver on Saturday night. Flames: Host Minnesota on Friday night.

NBA Recap: Los Angeles Lakers (96) vs. Chicago Bulls (90) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: Los Angeles Lakers (96) vs. Chicago Bulls (90) - Date: 11/30/2016 The Los Angeles Lakers needed a basket, and Julius Randle wanted the ball. Coach Luke Walton loved the whole thing.'' If it's a one-on-one situation with space, we feel very confident that he'll win that matchup,'' Walton said. Got it done in a big moment Wednesday night. Randle made a strong move against Nikola Mirotic for a tiebreaking layup with 45.1 seconds left, and the Lakers held off the Chicago Bulls for a gritty 96-90 victory. Randle had 13 points and matched a career high with 20 rebounds as Los Angeles bounced back from a 105-88 loss at New Orleans on Tuesday night. Lou Williams and Jordan Clarkson scored 18 points apiece, and Larry Nance Jr. finished with 12 points and 11 boards.'' Our guys just played hard, stayed mentally locked in,'' Randle said. Randle's drive and layup gave Los Angeles a 92-90 l ead. After Jimmy Butler missed on the other side for Chicago, Williams went 1 for 2 at the line with 20 seconds to go. Butler then missed another 3 and Randle and Nance combined for three foul shots to help Los Angeles hold on.'' Our guys have proven that when their backs are against the wall they can step up for a challenge,'' Walton said. ''They did it tonight. Winning Sports Gambling. That's a great win against a very talented team.'' Butler had 22 points on 4-of-18 shooting for the Bulls, who were hoping to build on a 4-2 road trip. Dwyane Wade, who was listed as doubtful after getting some dental work on Tuesday, scored 17 points, and Robin Lopez finished with 10 points, nine rebounds and a career-high eight blocked shots.'' It was an ugly game,'' Wade said. ''We have to find a way to win those games. No excuses.'' The Bulls used 40 points fro m Butler to beat the Lakers 118-110 in Los Angeles on Nov. 20. But the Lakers held the Bulls to 35.2 percent shooting in the rematch and enjoyed a 60-46 rebounding advantage.'' I think the missed shots definitely affected us,'' coach Fred Hoiberg said. ''You can't let that happen. Profitable NBA Basketball Handicappers. That and rebounding has to be your constant.'' BANGED-UP LAKERSIt was an impressive response from Los Angeles after the team announced before the game that Nick Young strained his right calf muscle in Tuesday night's loss to the Pelicans, sidelining the guard for two to four weeks. Soccer Handicappers. The Lakers also were without guard D'Angelo Russell, who missed his sixth straight game due to left knee soreness. GOOD START, BAD FINISHThe Bulls led by as many as 14 in the first quarter before settling for a 28-17 advantage after one. But the Lakers rallied in the second and it was tied at 47 at the break.'' We stopped rebounding. We stopped getting to loose balls. A lot of stuff,'' Butler said. ''It changed in their favor and they caught us slipping.'' TIP-INSLakers: Randle leads the team with five double-doubles this season. He has 39 double-doubles in 99 career games. ... It was Los Angeles' first win at the United Center since a 96-87 victory on Dec. 15, 2009. It had dropped five in a row in Chicago. ... NBA Basketball Handicappers. The Lakers committed 24 turnovers, leading to 26 points for the Bulls. Bulls: F Doug McDermott (concussion protocol) missed his seventh consecutive game. ... Butler has scored 20 or more points in his last 11 games, setting a career high. His previous best was six in a row. ... Chicago dropped to 8-1 this season when its opponent scores fewer than 100 points. ... Free Boxing Picks. The Bulls matched a season high with 15 steals. UP NEXTLakers: Play another back-to-back when they visit Toronto on Friday night and Memphis on Saturday night. Bulls: Host the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday night, and LeBron James pays up after he lost his bet with buddy Wade over the World Series. James is expected to wear a Chicago Cubs uniform before the game.---Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap

NHL Recap: Pittsburgh Penguins (3) vs. New York Islanders (5) - 11/30/2016

NHL Recap: Pittsburgh Penguins (3) vs. New York Islanders (5) - Date: 11/30/2016 Anders Lee scored the tiebreaking goal with 27 seconds remaining to lift the New York Islanders to a 5-3 victory over the defending champion Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday night. Make Money Betting Sports. Thomas Hickey fired a slap shot from the point that deflected off Lee's stick and past goalie Matt Murray to help the Islanders recover after giving up a three-goal lead in the third period. With Murray pulled on the ensuing faceoff, Nikolay Kulemin scored into the empty net 3 seconds later to give the Islanders consecutive victories for the second time this season. Johnny Boychuk, Jason Chimera and Casey Cizikas also scored for the Islanders, and Thomas Greiss made 31 saves. Profitable NHL Hockey Handicappers. Th ey led 3-0 after two periods. Conor Sheary, Justin Schultz and Evgeni Malkin scored in the first 13:08 of the third period for the Penguins. Murray finished with 25 saves while starting for the third time in four games. Best Sports Handicappers. The Islanders had not scored more than two goals in their last eight games - including a 3-2, 14-round shootout win at Anaheim on Nov. 22. NHL Hockey Handicappers. The Penguins came out aggressive in the third and quickly got on the scoreboard when Sheary knocked in a rebound past Greiss 32 seconds in. Phil Kessel had a breakaway a minute later but was stoned by Greiss. Schultz pulled the Penguins within one when he skated in across the left faceoff circle and fired a shot top shelf with 9:20 remaining. Malkin then tied it with a wrister past Greiss 2:28 later with his ninth of the season. Free Guaranteed Sports Picks. The Islanders made it 2-0 at 2:10 of the second on a goal credited to Chimera. Scott Mayfield fired a shot from the right slot and the puck bounced off several players before hitting Chimera's skate and off Murray and slowly trickling over the line before the goalie could stop it. It was Chimera's second of the season. Pittsburgh was called for two penalties seconds apart about 8 minutes into the second. After being whistled for too many men, Matt Cullen was called for a delay of game faceoff violation for falling on the puck on the ensuing faceoff. Free NHL Hockey Picks. The Islanders managed six shots on the 5-on-3, including a diving a glove save by Murray on a shot by Tavares from the right side. Cizikas made it 3-0 with 2:39 left in the second with his third of the season. Andrew Ladd fired a shot at the net and it deflected to Ci zikas who tipped it past Murray from the left side. Boychuk got the Islanders on the scoreboard first, firing a slap shot from outside the right faceoff circle into the left side of the night on Murray's blocker side with 13 seconds left in the opening period. It was Boychuk's third goal of the season, and first since Oct. 23. NOTES: Patric Hornqvist returned for the Penguins after missing six games due to a concussion. ... Pittsburgh was 0 for 3 on the power play and has not scored in 16 opportunities over the last five games. ... The Penguins won the first two meetings, 4-2 at home on Oct. 27 and 3-2 in OT here on Nov. 18. The teams' final matchup will be March 24 at Pittsburgh. ... Islanders F Ryan Strome returned to the lineup after being a healthy scratch the previous two games. ... New York's No. 3 goalie, Jean-Francois Berube, who has yet to appear in a game this season, was Greiss' backup while Jaroslav Halak sat out. ... D Adam Pelech was out aft er sustaining an upper body injury in Monday night's OT win over Calgary. Mayfield took his place and appeared in his second game of the season. UP NEXTPenguins: Host Dallas on Thursday night in the opener of a three-game homestand. Islanders: At Washington on Thursday night before a three-game homestand.---Follow Vin Cherwoo at www.twitter.com/VinCherwooAP

NCAAB Recap: George Mason (54) vs. Northern Iowa (50) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: George Mason (54) vs. Northern Iowa (50) - Date: 11/30/2016 Marquise Moore and Justin Kier each hit a pair of free throws in the final 19 seconds to secure George Mason a 54-50 win over Northern Iowa on Wednesday night. Spencer Haldeman hit a pair from the line with :30 left to get the Panthers within one, 50-49, but Moore answered with two of his own with 19 seconds left. Jordan Ashton got Northern Iowa within two by hitting the first of two free throws, but Kier knocked down two of his own with five seconds left to set the final score. Jaire Grayer led the Patriots (5-3) with 14 points and Otis Livingston II added another 12. George Mason collectively converted 15 of 20 free throw attempts to offset shooting just 18 of 50 from the field. Haldeman led Northern Iowa (3-3) with 16 points off the bench. Sports Bettors Email Leads. The Panther s were just 15 of 58 from the field.

NBA Recap: New York Knicks (106) vs. Minnesota Timberwolves (104) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: New York Knicks (106) vs. Minnesota Timberwolves (104) - Date: 11/30/2016 Kristaps Porzingis had 29 points and eight rebounds in a thrilling duel with Karl-Anthony Towns, helping the New York Knicks beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 106-104 on Wednesday night. Carmelo Anthony capped a quiet night with a game-winning 18-footer over Andrew Wiggins with 2.3 seconds to play, helping the Knicks avoid what would have been an epic collapse in the fourth quarter. Profitable Sports Handicappers. Towns had a career-high 47 points and 18 rebounds for the Wolves, who tied the game in the final minute after trailing by 17 with 7:30 to play. But Porzingis threw Gorgui Dieng aside for a putback slam and Anthony tipped the inbounds pass on Minnesota's final possession to thwart the comeback.

NCAAB Recap: Western Kentucky (59) vs. Eastern Kentucky (78) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Western Kentucky (59) vs. Eastern Kentucky (78) - Date: 11/30/2016 Asante Gist scored 19 points and Eastern Kentucky defeated Western Kentucky 78-59 on Wednesday night as the Colonels ended a 13-game skid in their series with the Hilltoppers. Nick Mayo, with five assists, and Isaac McGlone, who made all four of his 3-point attempts, scored 14 points each for EKU (4-4) in the rivals' 157th meeting. EKU's last win in the series came in 1987. Jaylen Babb-Harrison added 13 points and seven rebounds for the Colonels, who were 29 of 57 from the floor (50.9 percent), including 13 of 29 for 44.8 percent from 3-point range. Best Sports Picks Today. The Hilltoppers (3-4) were led by Justin Johnson with 18 points and eight rebounds. Junior Lomomba added 15 points and Que Johnson 13. EKU led 35-24 at halftime with Gist's 3-point er giving EKU a 12-point lead with 12:14 left. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The lead stayed in double figures, reaching a high of 24. Sports Betting Handicapping. This was EKU's first trip to the Colonels' home since 2007.

NCAAB Recap: Middle Tenn St (77) vs. Mississippi (62) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Middle Tenn St (77) vs. Mississippi (62) - Date: 11/30/2016 Giddy Potts scored 20 points and hit four 3-pointers to lead Middle Tennessee to a 77-62 victory over Mississippi on Wednesday night.?Middle Tennessee (7-1) hit 9 of 16 3-pointers as a team and shot 48 percent (29 of 60) from the floor in a game they dominated from the opening tip.'' The problem is that we have guys who, for whatever reason, freeze up out there,'' Ole Miss head coach Andy Kennedy said. ''It's my job to have an answer for that, and I don't.'' ?Ole Miss (5-2) struggled out of the gate, starting 0-for-7 from the field and turning the ball over 14 times in the first half. Middle Tennessee built a 16-1 lead early and eventually led 48-19 at the break.'' I've been in coaching a while, and that's about the best half you could have from the standpoint of hitting sho ts and making plays,'' Middle Tennessee head coach Kermit Davis said.?Ole Miss opened the second half on a 10-2 run and chipped away at the MT lead for most of the half, but never led. Number #1 Sports Handicapping Service. The Rebels managed only two second-half turnovers and finished 19-of-27 from the free throw line, but in the end could not overcome their deep first-half hole.'' We've flirted with a loss like this a couple times already this season,'' Kennedy said. ''It's like I told our team: if you get pulled over and the cop doesn't give you a ticket, you get a mile down the road and you speed back up - you don't learn your lesson. Well, we got our ticket tonight. And we're going to be paying for this one for a while.'' Middle Tennessee made shots when it needed them and finished an efficient 10-of-12 from the free throw line, including several duri ng a late Rebel push.'' I wouldn't say it was anything we did second half,'' Davis said. ''They just started making plays and gaining momentum. I think they kind of maybe ran out of gas there at the end.'' Potts was 7 of 9 from the field and 4 of 6 from beyond the arc for the Blue Raiders. Reggie Upshaw added 15 points on 6-of-10 shooting and 10 rebounds and JaCorey Williams chipped in 10.?Deandre Burnett led the Rebels with 15 points., while Cullen Neal added 13 points and Breein Tyree 11.?TURNOVER TROUBLESMiddle Tennessee scored 15 points off turnovers, capitalizing on Rebel mistakes.'' Our points-off-turnovers have been really good the last few games,'' Davis said. ''Our 1-3-1 is very active, very long. And we need that to be effective for us.'' ? BIG PICTUREMiddle Tennessee adds a quality road win to its non-conference resume. Profitable NCA AB College Basketball Handicappers. The Blue Raiders were an NCAA Tournament team last year, upsetting Michigan State in the first round.'' This was a quality RPI game that no one was really talking about,'' Davis said. ''It could be a great win in that sense for us. Andy's team definitely has a chance to be an NCAA tournament team.'' ? UP NEXTOle Miss will try to rebound with a home game versus Memphis on Saturday. Middle Tennessee travels to South Alabama on Saturday.

NCAAB Recap: Northern Illinois (52) vs. Indiana State (63) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Northern Illinois (52) vs. Indiana State (63) - Date: 11/30/2016 T. J. Bell scored 17 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the field and Indiana State pulled away in the second half in a 63-52 win over Northern Illinois on Wednesday night. Brenton Scott added 14 points and Everett Clemons finished with 12 points for the Sycamores (3-4). Indiana State was on point defensively for much of the night, holding the Huskies to just 34.6 percent shooting and 18.8 percent from 3-point range. Northern Illinois (4-4) led 26-24 at the half but Indiana State quickly seized the lead on a Matt Van Scyoc 3-pointer just 46 seconds into the second half and never trailed again. A Bell layup with 9:20 to go pushed the lead past double figures, and a Clemons layup three minutes later made it a game-high 13 (51-38). Justin Thomas was the lone player in double figures for Northern Illinois, finishing with 14 points.

NBA Recap: Sacramento Kings (0) vs. Philadelphia 76ers (0) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: Sacramento Kings (0) vs. Philadelphia 76ers (0) - Date: 11/30/2016 A scheduled game between the Sacramento Kings and Philadelphia 76ers was postponed Wednesday night by the NBA because of condensation on the court at the Wells Fargo Center. Good Return on Investment. The game, which was slated to start at 7 p.m., was called off at 8:03 p.m. A makeup date was not immediately announced. Profitable NBA Basketball Handicappers. The Philadelphia Flyers hosted an NHL game at the arena Tuesday night and the ice surface remained under the basketball court - standard procedure at the Wells Fargo Center. However, Wednesday was an unseasonably warm, humid day for late November in Philadelphia, and it likely affected the surface.'' With our ice surface, sometimes humidity is our biggest opponen t when we prepare for a game,'' said John Page, president of the Wells Fargo Center complex. ''We've never had an issue before, but we need to make sure we don't have this issue again.'' Sacramento center DeMarcus Cousins said players noticed the court was slippery at Wednesday morning's shoot around. By pregame warmups, the problem had worsened.'' It was pretty bad,'' Cousins said. ''I've never seen anything like that before.'' Cousins joined the fruitless effort to prepare the court, pushing around a pair of mops during the delay. He entered averaging 35.3 points in his last four games and was disappointed the contest was postponed.'' Guys go through their ritual, guys prepare for their games and, like that, they're telling us we're not playing; it's kind of disappointing,'' he said. ''I'm kind of glad it did go this way. Player safety should be considered first. I think they made the right decision.'' Sacramento announced the postponement on Twitter and razzed the 76ers, saying ''y'all can trust the process but not the floor? Smh (shake my head), (at)Sixers.'' Fans booed when the postponement was announced. 76ers CEO Scott O'Neil said tickets to Wednesday's contest would be valid for the makeup game, and fans in attendance also would get an additional ticket to another game - either Dec. 5 vs. Denver, Dec. 14 vs. Documented Handicappers. Toronto or Dec. 18 vs. Brooklyn - plus a rebate on parking.'' I know this is a tremendous inconvenience to the fans, so I certainly apologize on behalf of the organization,'' O'Neil said. It's the first postponement in the NBA since the league called off two games on Jan. 23 - Philadelphia at Boston and Utah at Washington - because of a wi nter storm. At least one game has been postponed in six of the past seven seasons. UP NEXTKings: At Boston on Friday night.76ers: Host Orlando on Friday night.

NBA Recap: Detroit Pistons (121) vs. Boston Celtics (114) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: Detroit Pistons (121) vs. Boston Celtics (114) - Date: 11/30/2016 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 25 points and Tobias Harris had 21 to lead balanced scoring that carried the Detroit Pistons to a 121-114 win over the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night. Andre Drummond added 20 points and 17 rebounds, one night after he was ejected in the second quarter of a victory at Charlotte for a flagrant-2 foul. Isaiah Thomas paced the Celtics with 27 points, and Kelly Olynyk scored a season-high 19. Boston had won five of seven. Marcus Morris had 20 points and Ish Smith 19 for the Pistons, who had lost eight of their first nine road games before winning away from home on consecutive nights. Detroit used a 9-0 spree midway through the fourth quarter to open a 103-95 edge with 5:08 to play after Boston went on an 11-0 run to take its first lead since early in the opening period. Morris and Harris each hit a 3-pointer during the Piston s' spurt. Detroit pushed its lead to 112-101 on Smith's basket before Boston closed within four points in the final 30 seconds. NBA Handicappers. The Pistons were shooting over 55 percent midway through the third quarter and opened their biggest lead of the game, 90-80, on Jon Leuer's dunk. Boston center Al Horford returned after missing Monday's win at Miami due to the birth of his second child. He scored nine points. NBA Basketball Handicappers. TIP-INSPistons: Coach Stan Van Gundy said G Reggie Bullock hasn't gotten an appointment yet for a second opinion on the torn meniscus in his left knee. Celtics: Coach Brad Stevens said there was no longer a limit on F Jae Crowder's minutes in his sixth game back from a sprained left ankle. Free Sports Picks Daily. There was a limit when Crowder first returned. . G Marcus Smart went down to the floor hard early in the fourth, but walked slowly to the bench during a stoppage. UP NEXTPistons: At Atlanta on Friday in the finale of a three-game road trip before they return home for two straight. Celtics: Host Sacramento on Friday before they head on the road for three in a row. Free NBA Basketball Picks. The Kings' scheduled game at Philadelphia on Wednesday night was postponed due to condensation on the court.

NBA Recap: Memphis Grizzlies (105) vs. Toronto Raptors (120) - 11/30/2016

NBA Recap: Memphis Grizzlies (105) vs. Toronto Raptors (120) - Date: 11/30/2016 Kyle Lowry had 29 points and eight assists, DeMar DeRozan scored 24 points and the Toronto Raptors ended the Memphis Grizzlies' six-game road winning streak with a 120-105 victory Wednesday night. Cory Joseph added 16 points off the bench for the Raptors, who defeated Memphis for the third straight time and for the sixth time in their last seven meetings. It was the fourth straight victory overall for the Raptors, their longest winning streak of the season. Andrew Harrison had 21 points and Troy Daniels added 19 off the bench for the injury-riddled Grizzlies, who were missing six regulars. Among the absent is star Mike Conley, who was ruled out for at least six weeks Tuesday with fractured vertebrae in his lower back. Winning Sports Handicappers. The Memphis guard was injured during Monda y's loss to Charlotte. Memphis could have tied the franchise record of seven consecutive road wins, set in the 2009-10 season, with a victory. Profitable NBA Basketball Handicappers. The Raptors seized control midway through the fourth quarter on back-to-back 3-pointers from Patrick Patterson and Joseph over a 1:01 span for a seven-point lead. A trio of Lowry free throws quickly pushed that advantage up to eight, and a DeMarre Carroll's 3-pointer with 4:10 remaining made it a 12-point edge. Helped by seven turnovers, including five from DeRozan, Memphis took a 28-25 edge into the second quarter on the back of 11 points from Marc Gasol. Memphis pushed its lead to eight to open the second, but Lowry led Toronto back with nine points to close to 57-55 at the half. Both teams exchanged leads in the third until a spectacular alley-oop basket from Lucas Nogueira followed by a pair of successful free thr ows by DeRozan allowed the Raptors to take an 89-82 lead, their biggest of the game at that point, into the fourth quarter. NBA Handicappers. TIP INSGrizzlies: G Chandler Parsons (left knee), F Brandan Wright (left ankle), F Vince Carter (right hip), F James Ennis III (right calf) and F Zach Randolph (personal) all missed the game. ... Carter, the former Raptor, received one of the loudest cheers of the night when he was shown on the video board in the second quarter. Raptors: Toronto finished the first month of the season with a winning record (11-7) and 10-plus wins for the third consecutive season. ... NBA Basketball Handicappers. The biggest cheer of the night came late in the fourth quarter when the big screen revealed that Major League Soccer team Toronto FC had beaten Canadian rival Montreal I mpact 5-2 on the night and 7-5 on aggregate to advance to their first MLS Cup final. CENTURY MARKWednesday's game was Toronto's 100th straight sellout in the regular season and playoffs at the Air Canada Centre, the longest streak in franchise history. DOWN BUT NOT OUTDespite his team's lengthy injury list, Memphis coach David Fizdale refused to dwell on the situation his team currently finds itself in.'' I don't look at it like that. I see nothing but opportunity and I preach that to our guys. We don't feel sorry for ourselves. Next man up and trust that next guy to do his job well enough to win on the road.'' ACES HIGHThe world's No. 3 men's tennis player, Canadian Milos Raonic, sat courtside. He signed a number of balls and sat back as the team mascot, the Raptor, shot them high into the stands with a tennis racquet. UP NEXTGrizzlies: Aim for a ninth straight home victory against Orlando on Thursday night. Raptors: Continue six- game homestand on Friday night seeking fourth straight victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.

NCAAB Recap: Purdue (64) vs. Louisville (71) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Purdue (64) vs. Louisville (71) - Date: 11/30/2016 Ray Spalding and Mangok Mathiang each scored 11 points and Donovan Mitchell contributed seven critical points down the stretch to help No. 14 Louisville hold off No. 15 Purdue 71-64 on Wednesday night in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Seeking a rebound from their second-half collapse against Baylor in the Battle 4 Atlantis championship when they lost a 22-point lead, the Cardinals held Purdue to a season-low 36 percent shooting but needed key baskets in the final minutes as the Boilermakers cut a 51-33 deficit to four with 14.4 seconds left. Ryan McMahon's 3-pointer with 4 minutes remaining helped along with Mathiang's layup with 2:30 left, but Mitchell's late scoring including a 3 and then two free throws with 2 second left helped the Cardinals (6-1) escape with their first win over Purdue since 1996. Louisville's 32-18 advantage in the paint wa s big with Anas Mahmoud adding nine points. He fouled out with 1:41 left. Caleb Swanigan had 14 points and 11 rebounds and P. J. Free Picks and Parlays. Thompson had 13 points, but the Boilermakers (5-2) had their four-game winning streak stopped along with a conference-record seven-game winning streak in the Challenge. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. THE BIG PICTUREPurdue: The Boilermakers entered ranked seventh in assists at nearly 20 per game but had just five in the first half and finished with 13. A perimeter game that started just 4 of 12 in the first half improved to 6 of 11 in the second en route to finishing above 43 percent for the fifth straight game. But they committed 17 turnovers leading to 11 points. Louisville: The Cardinals pushed the tempo from the start and their defense forced 10 first-half turnovers against Purdue's height. Sports Handicapper Leaderboard. They forced 17 turnovers overall and shot 48 percent. ... Coach Rick Pitino used his bench early, playing 12 in the first half alone. POLL IMPLICATIONSLouisville figures to remain the same depending on what happens at Grand Canyon. Purdue shouldn't drop much with a loss to the No. 14 team. UP NEXTPurdue: The Boilermakers will face their second straight Kentucky school when they host Morehead State on Saturday in their first meeting since 1985. Louisville: The Cardinals travel Phoenix to face Dan Majerle-coached Grand Canyon on Saturday night. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. They won last year's inaugural meeting 111-63.---More AP College Basketball: www.collegebasketball.ap.org

NCAAB Recap: Virginia Tech (73) vs. Michigan (70) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Virginia Tech (73) vs. Michigan (70) - Date: 11/30/2016 Zach LeDay scored 15 of his 18 points in the second half, and Virginia Tech rallied from a 15-point first-half deficit to beat Michigan 73-70 on Wednesday night. Best Free Sports Picks. The Hokies (6-1) trailed 67-63 late in the second half before a 3-pointer by Justin Bibbs started an 8-0 run. Seth Allen gave Virginia Tech the lead with a driving layup, then added a 3-pointer. Duncan Robinson's 3-pointer with 42 seconds left pulled Michigan (5-2) to within a point, and an offensive foul on Allen gave the Wolverines the ball back. But Michigan was out of timeouts, and Zak Irvin ended up trying a tough jumper from just inside the arc that missed. After Bibbs made two free throws with 3.9 seconds left, Robinson had a chance to tie it, but his 3-pointer from the left wing missed. Mi chigan was in total control at the start, jumping out to a 17-4 lead and eventually going up 23-8 on a 3-pointer by Derrick Walton. Virginia Tech was down 39-30 at halftime but opened the second half with a 9-2 run. Irvin led Michigan with 23 points. BIG PICTUREVirginia Tech: The Hokies did their part in the ACC-Big Ten challenge, coming away with an upset win on the road. Virginia Tech had little trouble scoring after its slow start. Four players ended up in double figures. Michigan: The Wolverines have looked better on defense this season, but the second half of this game was a bit of a wake-up call. Virginia Tech shot 52 percent from the field on the night. UP NEXTVirginia Tech: The Hokies don't play again until next Wednesday night, when they host Maryland-Eastern Shore. Michigan: The Wolverines host Kennesaw State on Saturday, taking a break from major-conference competition in a four-game stretch that includes matchups with Virginia Tech, Texas and UCLA.

NCAAB Recap: Rutgers (61) vs. Miami Florida (73) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Rutgers (61) vs. Miami Florida (73) - Date: 11/30/2016 Freshman Dewan Huell had 14 points and seven rebounds in 25 minutes and the Miami Hurricanes scored 17 consecutive points in the second half Wednesday to beat previously undefeated Rutgers in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, 73-61. Number #1 Sports Handicapping Service. The 6-foot-11 Huell scored in double figures for the fifth time this season and had a couple of baskets worthy of video replays. Another freshman, Bruce Brown, scored 11 points, including a 3-point play with less than two minutes left to stop a late Rutgers run. Miami (5-2) bounced back from consecutive losses last week. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Scarlet Knights (6-1) had been off to their best start since their Final Four se ason in 1975-76. Rutgers trailed by 15 points early, rallied to within 36-32 and then went nine minutes without a point. Sports Betting Handicapping. The Scarlet Knights went 0 for 11 with five turnovers during the drought while Miami pulled out to a 53-32 lead. It was another strong defensive effort by the Hurricanes, who came into the game ranked 12th in scoring defense at 58.7 points per game. NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Scarlet Knights came into the game third in the nation in rebounding margin but were outrebounded 44-30. Free Tennis Picks. The Hurricanes took leads of 15-4 and 25-10, and then scored two points over the next eight minutes while committing a flurry of turnovers that allowed the Scarlet Knights to climb back into the game. Miami led 34-28 at halftime. BIG PICTURERutgers: The Scarlet Knights came up short in their first real test of the season. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. They struggled early, especially in allowing the Hurricanes to set the tone on the boards by outrebounding Rutgers 14-2 in the first 10 minutes. Miami: The Hurricanes are especially young and inexperienced inside, but Huell showed his potential to provide a foundation for the future. His most impressive play might have been a graceful, high-flying layup leading a fast break for a 49-32 lead. He also drove the baseline from the left corner for a dunk, prompting a big cheer from the small crowd. UP NEXTRutgers: The Scarlet Knights return home to play Morgan State on Saturday. Miami: All six of the Hurricanes' games in December will be in South Florida, beginning Saturday against Wofford.---More AP college basketball: http://collegebasketball.ap.org

NCAAB Recap: Washington (71) vs. TCU (86) - 11/30/2016

NCAAB Recap: Washington (71) vs. TCU (86) - Date: 11/30/2016 Alex Robinson scored 16 points and TCU rallied from an early 17-point deficit to beat Washington 86-71 on Wednesday night in a rare back-to-back meeting of non-conference opponents. Robinson had a career-high 24 points in the first game four days earlier in the Global Sports Classic in Las Vegas. Free Sport Pick. The Horned Frogs (7-0) won the first meeting 93-80, but had just three points nearly nine minutes into the rematch after missing 15 of their first 17 shots. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. TCU went on an 18-0 run to erase a 22-5 deficit, going ahead by a point on a 3-pointer from Robinson, who scored nine during the run. Sports Handicapper Tracker. The Fro gs, under first-year coach and former TCU guard Jamie Dixon, went ahead for good on a 3-pointer late in the first half by JD Miller, who had 12 points. Freshman guard Jaylen Fisher scored 14 of his 15 points after halftime. Markelle Fultz led the Huskies (4-3) with 21 points, 14 rebounds and six assists - but had six of the Huskies' season-high 25 turnovers. Carlos Johnson added 13 points and eight boards. After trailing by 17 in the first half, TCU took its first 17-point lead when Miller blocked a layup attempt by Dominic Green and Robinson converted a three-point play at the other end for a 75-58 advantage. DOUBLING UPIt's the fourth time since 1979-80 that Washington has played a non-conference opponent twice in the same season, but the second time in as many years. Washington beat Texas in last season's opener in China before the Longhorns won in the Bahamas. ... Profitable NCAAB Colle ge Basketball Handicappers. The last time Washington played the same non-conference opponent in back-to-back games was at Hawaii in 1975-76, winning both. ... Sports Touts. TCU finished the 2009-10 season with consecutive losses to Mountain West Conference foe BYU. NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Frogs beat Tulsa twice in non-conference in 2013-14 before going 0-18 in Big 12 play. BIG PICTUREWashington: The Huskies were dominant early behind Fultz but faded fast. They haven't shown much depth behind the McDonald's All-American and will need to find some to be competitive in the Pac-12. TCU: The Frogs had some strong preseasons under former coach Trent Johnson as well, so it remains to be seen what this means with the difficult Big 12 season looming. But the Frogs have two straight wins over Power 5 conference foes led by top NBA pr ospects. UP NEXTWashington: The Huskies get a week off before traveling to No. 8 Gonzaga, the biggest test left before the start of Pac-12 play against Washington State on New Year's Day. TCU: This was the start of eight straight games in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, seven at home. Arkansas State visits Saturday. The lone road game is at SMU. The last two in this home stretch are the first two in Big 12 play: No. 4 Kansas on Dec. 30 and unranked Oklahoma, a No. 2 seed in last season's NCAA Tournament, on Jan. 3.---More AP college basketball: www.collegebasketball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25.

NBA Preview: Detroit Pistons vs. Boston Celtics - 11/30/2016 - 7:35 PM EST

NBA Preview: Detroit Pistons vs. Boston Celtics - Date: 11/30/2016 Time: 07:30 P.M. EST Venue: TD Garden  BOSTON -- Al Horford will be back in the Boston lineup when the Celtics host the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday night. Horford, who missed nine games this season because of a concussion, was not with the team in its easy win at Miami on Monday night because his wife gave birth to the couple's second child. Amazingly, Horford had to defend not being at the game after a local talk-show host said he should have chartered a jet and joined his team in Florida." My family's very important to me," he said Tuesday. "For me, I'm in more of a unique situation because this is our first year here (in Boston) and my wife, we all moved in the middle of the pregnancy. And just a lot going on. So I just felt like it was important for me to really be there, supporting her. And we have a son as well." ; So for her, it's been a lot thrown at her these past few months. So I know that it meant a lot for me to be there with her, and knowing our schedule ahead and everything. So I'm just very happy that the Celtics really take the time and they consider us not only as players but as people. And people that have families." After Horford's sister came to his defense on Twitter, the player put the whole thing in perspective, saying, "I don't really read into any (criticism). I don't read Twitter and stuff, and the radio and all that. I just kind of focus on the court, on my job here, and then off the court on my family." Everybody has their opinion. I respect anything that anybody has to say. I care a lot about the group and our guys. Like I was explaining earlier, for my family's sake it was important for me to be there for them. Just with our transition and everything. So that's that. Now I can put that behind me and get focu sed again on (Wednesday's game)." That contest will be against a Detroit team that won easily beat the Hornets on Tuesday night, a 112-89 win at Charlotte." Give them their due -- four games in five nights, it's awfully difficult in this league," Detroit coach Stan Van Gundy said of the Hornets. "I think they ran out of gas a little bit in the second half. But still, we did what we were supposed to do. It was important for us to do that, so I was happy." The Pistons won despite the ejection of big man Andre Drummond in the second quarter for throwing an elbow at Roy Hibbert -- a non-believing Drummond laughing and shaking his head as he walked off the court following the flagrant-2 call. Profitable Sports Handicappers. Tobias Harris scored 24 points and Marcus Morris and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope added 18 apiece for the Pistons (9-10)." It says a lot about ou r team, but most importantly about guys like Aron (Baynes) and Jon (Leuer) to fill in for that role and be productive and bring the energy that (Drummond) had when he was out there," Harris said. "We just kept playing with them." The Celtics (10-7) cruised to a 112-104 win in Miami and came away saying Heat coach Erik Spoelstra told his players that Boston guard Marcus Smart was "a hothead." "I was begging for Spoelstra to get a technical foul because he was saying a lot of stuff," Boston's Jae Crowder said. "He was everywhere (Monday) night, but that's one of the things he did say. When they went to intentional foul Marcus, it was obvious that what they were trying to do was more than just foul. Profitable NBA Basketball Handicappers. They were trying to get under his skin and play a little physical, and kno wing he wanted to retaliate for the most part. So it's just part of the scouting report on I guess Marcus that he wears his emotions on his sleeve." The Pistons and Celtics played Nov. 19 in Auburn Hills, Boston winning 94-92 with Isaiah Thomas scoring 24 points and dishing out eight assists.

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NBA Preview: Indiana Pacers vs. Portland Trail Blazers - 11/30/2016 - 10:05 PM EST

NBA Preview: Indiana Pacers vs. Portland Trail Blazers - Date: 11/30/2016 Time: 10:00 P.M. EST Venue: Moda Center The Portland Trail Blazers seem determined to improve their defensive performance, beginning Wednesday night with a home date against the Indiana Pacers. On Monday, 12 hours after a 130-114 drubbing by the Houston Rockets, the Trail Blazers began to lay the foundation with a video session and a spirited practice focused on defense." This is the first time we've had a real practice in what seems like forever," point guard Damian Lillard said. "It was good for us to try to sharpen up, (to have) coaches challenge us." It's to the point now where our pride has to kick in. We have to show how much we actually care about ... being better defensively." The Rockets scorched the Blazers with 56.1 percent shooting, including 47.2 percent (17 for 36) from 3-point range. P ortland owns the worst defensive efficiency rating in the NBA (109.80) and is giving up more points (113.7) than any team in the league other than Brooklyn (114.0). Sports Handicapping Service Winning Streaks. The Blazers (9-10) are tired of talking about getting better at the defensive end." We keep preaching it, but it's getting old," guard Allen Crabbe said. "At some point, it has to click. We keep telling ourselves we have to get better, but at some point, we have to get it going." The Blazers are one of the better offensive teams in the NBA, but they have trouble stopping anybody. Cleveland blitzed them for 137 points, Golden State for 127, Houston for 126 and 130, even Phoenix for 121." We scored 125 points against Cleveland," Lillard said. "That's a lot of points to score and not win a game. Right now, we're not getting it done on the defensive end. Profitable NBA Basketball Handicappers. That's what it comes down to." We're going to put points on the board, but we have to find a way to get better at coming up with more stops. If (an opponent's) execution gets harder, the (shooting) percentage is going to go down. We have to make them more uncomfortable more consistently." Indiana, meanwhile, begins a five-game road trip coming off impressive back-to-back routs at home of the Brooklyn Nets (118-97) and the Los Angeles Clippers (91-70). Top Rated Sports Handicappers. The wins were achieved without the services of star forward Paul George, who has missed six of the past seven games -- and will also sit out Wednesday's contest -- with ankle and back injuries. NBA Basketball Handicappers. The Pacers also emphasize defense, led by point guard Jeff Teague, who ranks fourth in the NBA in steals at 2.11 per game." I have to be aggressive defensively and do my best to ignite and get guys going by pressuring the ball," Teague told the media. "Everything else will take care of itself. (The last two games) we're moving the ball better, guys are making shots and guys are playing with confidence." Coach Nate McMillan is striving for consistency in both effort and performance." We talked about not taking steps back," McMillan said. "We've played some good games, and then you can't recognize the team the next game. We need to build some momentum at this point in the season." McMillan has been impressed with the work of 20-year-old center Myles Turner, who averaged 16.5 points, 10 rebounds and 2.5 blocked shots the last two games going up against Brook Lopez and DeAnd re Jordan." Hey, welcome to the center position in the NBA: (Atlanta's) Dwight Howard to Brook to Jordan the last three games," McMillan said. "They're big, powerful guys. (Turner) is still developing and growing into that position, defending the basket. He's working. Sports Handicapper Picks. That's the one thing he brings to the floor every night."

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NCAAB Preview: Ohio State vs. Virginia - 11/30/2016 - 9:15 PM EST

NCAAB Preview: Ohio State vs. Virginia - Date: 11/30/2016 Time: 09:00 P.M. EST  Sixth-ranked Virginia has never missed an ACC-Big Ten Challenge. Free Winning Sports Picks. This week marks the 18th annual battle between teams from two of the top conferences in the country, as the Cavaliers enter their matchup Wednesday night with Ohio State in Charlottesville, Va. riding a two-game win streak in the competition. On the flip side, the Buckeyes have dropped two straight in the challenge and take on Virginia for the second straight season. Virginia knocked off Ohio State in Columbus 64-58 last year behind 22 points from Malcolm Brogdon, who now plays for the Milwaukee Bucks. Point guard London Perrantes missed last season's game after an appendectomy but will be at full strength this season. Perrantes is coming off of a tournament MVP award at the Emerald Coast Clas sic last weekend that saw the Cavaliers take home the title with wins over Iowa and Providence. Providence head coach Ed Cooley had high praise for the 6-foot-2 senior point guard." He might be one of the most poised basketball players I have ever seen play the game of basketball," Cooley said after the Friars' loss to the Cavaliers. Perrantes put in 11 points, grabbed eight rebounds and dished out five assists to help Virginia stay unbeaten at 6-0 this season. Ohio State is coming off of a 41-point win over Marshall on Friday and also enters Wednesday night's game at 6-0. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. The Buckeyes have spread the wealth so far this season as they boast six players averaging at least 10 points per game. Number #1 Sports Handicapping Service. Thad Matta's squad is led by Jae'Sean Tate who is sco ring at a 14 points per game clip and is pulling down seven rebounds per game. He will be a handful for Virginia's frontcourt. Profitable NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Buckeyes will likely not come close to their 111-point outing against Marshall as Virginia enters Wednesday with the nation's top scoring defense. Providence scored 52 points against the Cavaliers and became the highest-scoring Virginia opponent this season. Iowa managed just 41 points against the Cavaliers in Friday night's game after they came in averaging 94 points per game. Sport Handicapping. The Hawkeyes followed up that performance by scoring 92 points against Memphis. Bottom line is, Virginia's defense is already in mid-season form just six games into the season. Ohio State ranks 33rd in the country in rebounding as they pull down and average o f 41 per game but they might be tested by a Virginia team that is outrebounding its opponents by 13. Bench scoring has been a key for the Cavaliers and it should continue to be as Perrantes and guard Darius Thompson became the first starters to lead the Cavaliers in scoring when they tallied 11 points apiece against Providence. Freshman Kyle Guy continues to shine for Virginia as he provides a spark off of the bench for Tony Bennett's team. NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. The Cavaliers look to improve on their 10-6 record in the challenge while Ohio State looks to even up its 7-8 record.

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NCAAB Preview: North Carolina vs. Indiana - 11/30/2016 - 9:15 PM EST

NCAAB Preview: North Carolina vs. Indiana - Date: 11/30/2016 Time: 09:00 P.M. EST  BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - No. 13 Indiana will try to summon karma from its banner-hoisting past when hosting No. 3 North Carolina Wednesday night in a nationally televised ACC/Big Ten Challenge clash. Sports Betting Leads. The Hoosiers' 1981 National Championship team, which defeated the Tar Heels in the title game, will be honored in a halftime ceremony. NCAAB College Basketball Handicappers. That Bob Knight squad had Isiah Thomas, Randy Wittman, Ray Tolbert and Landon Turner, among others. Problem is, those guys can't suit up against the latest Tar Heels (7-0), who are fresh off three wins by an average of 30.3 points at the Maui Invitational including a 71-56 finale over Wisconsin on Nov. 23. North Carolina's path to finishing last season as an NCAA Tournament runner-up included a 101-86 victory over Indiana in the Sweet Sixteen at Philadelphia." I'm not going to go out and make my reservations for the Final Four," Tar Heels head coach Roy Williams said after the Wisconsin win. "I've never seen a national championship won the day before Thanksgiving. It's usually won that first Monday night in April." He would know. He celebrated national titles in 2005 and 2009. Indiana (4-1), ranked third before losing in overtime at Fort Wayne and dropping 10 spots, could be without its leading scorer in junior guard James Blackmon Jr., who is questionable with a left knee injury. Free Picks Against the Spread. The 20.5-point scorer, who also leads the team in 3-pointers with 15 out of 32 attempted (.469), missed Sunday's 85-52 home rout of Mississippi Valley State. Blackmon has a lengthy history of significant knee injuries. He tore his left ACL in high school, meniscus in the same knee early in his college career and last year the right ACL prior to the Big Ten opener and missed the rest of the season." This afternoon, I go run, and I come through the weight room at the end before I go home to change, and there he is in the weight room doing his leg exercises,'' Indiana head coach Tom Crean said after Sunday's win. "He's very, very diligent on getting himself ready. He's been through a lot. Been through a lot before he even got here." So we've just got to make sure that we're patient with him and help him get through that part of it, and he'll know his body. He's certainly got great support here, and he'll get that. And we'll just see how the next few days go.'' While the Hoosiers average 88.6 points scored and have allowed 69.6 per game, the Tar Heels sport a 92.9-point average w hile allowing 65.6. Both teams shoot 3-pointers well - Indiana has made 51 of 128 (.398) while North Carolina has hit 47 of 120 (.392). Five Tar Heels average in double digits, led by junior guard Joel Berry II at 17.1 points per game. Berry has a team-high 16 3-pointers and was just named ACC Player of the Week for a second time in this young season. Free NCAAB College Basketball Picks. Tar Heels junior forward/guard Justin Jackson averages 15.4 points with 11 3-pointers. Senior forward Isaiah Hicks checks in at 14.6 points and senior forward Kennedy Meeks averages 13.7 points and 10.7 rebounds per game." We're not perfect," Hicks said. "We have to polish some things, especially on the offensive side. We need to move more and get a little better spacing. Sometimes we get caught standing there. And we always have to keep up our defensive intensity and effort." Indiana sophomore forward OG Anunoby bounced back from a flu-shortened scoreless game with a career-high 21 points Sunday to boost his scoring average to 11.8 points. Sports Handicapper Tracker. The preseason All-American also grabs 6.2 rebounds per game. Hoosiers junior guard Robert Johnson averages 13.8 points and sophomore center Thomas Bryant averages 13.6 points and 8.2 rebounds. Crean, the 2016 Big Ten Coach of the Year, is matching wits against one of the all-time greats in Williams, a 29th-year Hall of Famer whose 790-209 record ranks eighth on the career win list. Crean has spent half of his 18 seasons at Indiana and has a 342-216 overall record. Indiana has an 8-6 series advantage including 2-1 in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Since 2011-12, Indiana has five wins against top-three opponents, which ties for second behind Duke's six.

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