Twenty-six of the NBA’s 30 teams hit the court for a busy night of hoops where three players went for 40-plus. Today’s edition hits all the NBA highlights, as well as a special feature on the league’s next generation from contributor Matthew Cahill. We’ll look-ahead to the NFL Playoffs in tomorrow’s weekend primer.
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Night of Buckets: Embiid’s 50-Ball
76ers’ Joel Embiid Drops 50 Points in 27 Minutes to Lead Furious Scoring Frenzy in NBA
Wednesday’s game ball goes undoubtedly belonged to Joel Embiid. The Sixers’ big man tied his career-high with 50 points in a ridiculous 27:03 of game time. That’s the second lowest number of minutes for a 50-point performance, according to ESPN Stats & Information. Klay Thompson scored 52 in 26:33 back in 2018. Embiid was 17-for-23 from the field and 15-for-17 from the line as his 76ers beat the Magic (123-110). He hit the bench after reaching the 50-mark less than a minute into the 4th quarter.
Other NBA Highlights
Jokic Nabs 49-Point Triple-Double: Nikola Jokic grabbed our second game ball of Wednesday night as the Nuggets outlasted the Clippers in overtime (130-128, OT). Jokic (49-14-10) was a beast down the stretch.
Luka Launches 41-Point Night: The second game ball on Wednesday belonged to Luka Doncic, who led the Mavericks to a win over the Raptors (102-98). Doncic poured in 41 points, 14 rebounds and 7 assists.
Giannis & Morant Go H2H: The best battle of the night featured Giannis Antetokounmpo (33-15-7) and Ja Morant (33-14-8), who both flirted with triple-doubles. The Bucks beat the Grizzlies (126-114).
Trae Young Goes for 37: The Hawks won their second straight game by topping the T-Wolves (134-122) thanks to Trae Young’s 37-point, 14-assist night. Young was on fire from deep with six triples.
Full NBA Scoreboard
Special: The NBA’s Next Generation
A Look at the Youngsters About to Take Over
By Matthew Cahill (Sportsletter Contributor)
It seems like the tides are starting to change in the NBA. While today’s icons like Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, and LeBron James are still dominating as they progress through the latter stage of their careers, many other longtime household names have been struggling this season. James Harden hasn’t been playing to his normal standards while Damian Lillard and Kawhi Leonard are both out for the foreseeable future with major injuries. With all of them on the wrong side of 30, it’s not crazy to begin to wonder if this is a sign of decline for these players.
Today, we’re going to take a look at those in line to fill the shoes of those who are on their way out.
There are currently two tiers of young stars in the league. The first includes the up-and-coming players who have shown they have what it takes to develop into all-NBA talents, but still need a few more years of development and experience before they’re truly considered one of the best in the league. The next tier includes the players who have proven they are franchise cornerstones, and are without a doubt going to be among the new faces of basketball. Let’s see who’s got next…
Read Full Article (TheSportsletter.com)
AUS Open Day 4: Muguruza & Kontaveit Out
Two of Women’s Top-10 Exit; #13 Schwartzman and #10 Hurkacz Out in Men’s Draw
Down they go. Some of the top players are beginning to fall in Round 2 of the Australian Open. Yesterday’s action watched two top-10 stars get upset in the women’s draw — #3 Garbine Muguruza and #6 Anett Kontaveit. Both were stunned in straight-set losses. Meanwhile, #13 Diego Schwartzman and #10 Hubert Hurkacz also suffered straight-set stunners. The rest of the top tennis stars skated through to Round 3 with some in action overnight. Here’s the latest from Melbourne:
Other 2nd-Round Scores & Highlights
In Action Overnight: #2 D. Medvedev, #4 S. Tsitsipas
Yahoo! Sports: AUS Open: Women’s Draw Opens Up After High Seeds Upset
Steven Bergwijn came in as a late sub for Tottenham in a 2-1 deficit against Leicester City, and the supersub delivered. Bergwijn scored twice in stoppage time to complete an unbelievable rally for Spurs (3-2).
Ryan Reaves scored his first two goals of the season for the Rangers in a 6-3 win over the Maple Leafs. It was the first multi-goal game for the 35-year-old Reaves since 2013. The Rangers have won three straight to sit atop the Metropolitan standings.
NCAA Men’s Basketball
NCAA Women’s Basketball
From monobob to freestyle skiing big air, here’s what you need to know about the new events at the Winter Games. (Sports Illustrated)
The MLB trade market should heat up quickly once the lockout ends. Here are five deals we’d like to see, including the Yankees and Phillies blockbusters. (CBS Sports)
After three blowouts, one legitimately close game, and another that will be remembered for a series of Mike McCarthy blunders, there’s plenty to learn from what transpired. (The Ringer)