Connect with us

Uncategorized

Lakers’ Talen Horton-Tucker shines throughout season debut, but makes biggest mark as crunch time initiator

Published

on


Frank Vogel didn’t mince words on Sunday after Talen Horton-Tucker helped lead the Lakers to a 114-106 (box score) win over the San Antonio Spurs in his season debut. “We invested in him this summer for a reason,” Vogel told reporters. “We believe in that young man.” 

That belief powered a somewhat controversial investment. Horton-Tucker, who averaged only 8.7 points in 71 career games through his first two NBA seasons, was awarded a three-year, $31 million contract this offseason based in large part on potential. That potential was so precious to the Lakers that they refused to deal him for veteran All-Star Kyle Lowry at the 2021 trade deadline, and then chose to pay him over the more proven Alex Caruso in free agency. 

What Horton-Tucker seemingly lacked as a shooter compared to those the Lakers turned away, they hoped he could make up for as a ball-handler and defender. The first returns on that investment came on Sunday. Horton-Tucker scored 17 points on 50 percent shooting in a win. His on-ball defense was, at times, as ferocious as the Lakers could have hoped.

Advertisement

But that trust, the belief that led to the big investment that the Lakers made in Horton-Tucker, was most evident down the stretch. The Lakers had previously led the Spurs by as many as 14 points, but San Antonio had whittled the Los Angeles advantage down to two. With 2:41 remaining in the game, Frank Vogel called timeout. The Lakers won the game in the three possessions that followed, all of which were initiated by Horton-Tucker. 

It started with his only points of the stretch. Horton-Tucker brings the ball up before dumping it off to Carmelo Anthony. He relocates to the corner while Russell Westbrook and Wayne Ellington try their hand at attacking the basket. Neither succeeds, but in the process have contorted the defense so much that Horton-Tucker has a fairly clean path to the rim. Two points.

He isn’t particularly involved in this next play, in which he makes the entry pass to Anthony Davis who then hits Carmelo Anthony for a 3, but that’s not the point. Though the fact that he got the rebound likely informs this, for the second consecutive crunch-time possession, Horton-Tucker is bringing the ball up the floor and triggering the initial action. He is, with Westbrook of all people on the floor alongside him, playing point guard.

We see this again on the next possession. With Horton-Tucker initiating the offense, Westbrook hunkers down in the dunker’s spot. He’s rewarded for it, though, when Horton-Tucker’s pass to Davis opens the door for a quick cut to the rim. Two more points.

By this point, the Laker lead is up to nine and the game is effectively secured. Yet Horton-Tucker still takes the next possession in an attempt to score one-on-one. He turns the ball over, but we’ve now made it through the last four competitive portions of the game without Westbrook running the Laker offense. He is, again, waiting in the dunker’s spot.

Advertisement

None of this represents any sort of grand shift in the Laker hierarchy, of course. Westbrook hasn’t been supplanted as the team’s point guard, and the entire crunch-time offense will reconfigure when LeBron James returns. What it is, though, is a glimpse into what the Lakers envisioned when they constructed this unusual roster. 

That first possession was something of a blueprint for the Lakers as they navigate lineups with limited spacing. While Westbrook and Horton-Tucker will likely impede the simple, LeBron-Davis pick-and-roll-centric approach the Lakers have employed over the past two seasons late in games, the tradeoff theoretically comes in how much lineups with so many dangerous downhill drivers can twist defenses out of shape. The impending returns of James and Kendrick Nunn will only give the Lakers more such weapons. It is, in essence, a bet on talent. The Lakers think they have so much of it that they can afford to let Westbrook hamper their spacing off of the ball in the name of spreading the wealth and sprinkling a dose of unpredictability into their offense. 

It’s a bold and extremely unconventional approach in 2021. There’s a reason most teams place such a premium on shooting, after all, and the Lakers know it after winning a championship that way in 2020. But their belief in Horton-Tucker was so great that they chose the harder path this time around, and if Sunday was any indication, he’s well worth the investment. 

require.config({"baseUrl":"https://sportsfly.cbsistatic.com/fly-0105/bundles/sportsmediajs/js-build","config":{"version":{"fly/components/accordion":"1.0","fly/components/alert":"1.0","fly/components/base":"1.0","fly/components/carousel":"1.0","fly/components/dropdown":"1.0","fly/components/fixate":"1.0","fly/components/form-validate":"1.0","fly/components/image-gallery":"1.0","fly/components/iframe-messenger":"1.0","fly/components/load-more":"1.0","fly/components/load-more-article":"1.0","fly/components/load-more-scroll":"1.0","fly/components/loading":"1.0","fly/components/modal":"1.0","fly/components/modal-iframe":"1.0","fly/components/network-bar":"1.0","fly/components/poll":"1.0","fly/components/search-player":"1.0","fly/components/social-button":"1.0","fly/components/social-counts":"1.0","fly/components/social-links":"1.0","fly/components/tabs":"1.0","fly/components/video":"1.0","fly/libs/easy-xdm":"2.4.17.1","fly/libs/jquery.cookie":"1.2","fly/libs/jquery.throttle-debounce":"1.1","fly/libs/jquery.widget":"1.9.2","fly/libs/omniture.s-code":"1.0","fly/utils/jquery-mobile-init":"1.0","fly/libs/jquery.mobile":"1.3.2","fly/libs/backbone":"1.0.0","fly/libs/underscore":"1.5.1","fly/libs/jquery.easing":"1.3","fly/managers/ad":"2.0","fly/managers/components":"1.0","fly/managers/cookie":"1.0","fly/managers/debug":"1.0","fly/managers/geo":"1.0","fly/managers/gpt":"4.3","fly/managers/history":"2.0","fly/managers/madison":"1.0","fly/managers/social-authentication":"1.0","fly/utils/data-prefix":"1.0","fly/utils/data-selector":"1.0","fly/utils/function-natives":"1.0","fly/utils/guid":"1.0","fly/utils/log":"1.0","fly/utils/object-helper":"1.0","fly/utils/string-helper":"1.0","fly/utils/string-vars":"1.0","fly/utils/url-helper":"1.0","libs/jshashtable":"2.1","libs/select2":"3.5.1","libs/jsonp":"2.4.0","libs/jquery/mobile":"1.4.5","libs/modernizr.custom":"2.6.2","libs/velocity":"1.2.2","libs/dataTables":"1.10.6","libs/dataTables.fixedColumns":"3.0.4","libs/dataTables.fixedHeader":"2.1.2","libs/dateformat":"1.0.3","libs/waypoints/infinite":"3.1.1","libs/waypoints/inview":"3.1.1","libs/waypoints/jquery.waypoints":"3.1.1","libs/waypoints/sticky":"3.1.1","libs/jquery/dotdotdot":"1.6.1","libs/jquery/flexslider":"2.1","libs/jquery/lazyload":"1.9.3","libs/jquery/maskedinput":"1.3.1","libs/jquery/marquee":"1.3.1","libs/jquery/numberformatter":"1.2.3","libs/jquery/placeholder":"0.2.4","libs/jquery/scrollbar":"0.1.6","libs/jquery/tablesorter":"2.0.5","libs/jquery/touchswipe":"1.6.18","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.core":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.draggable":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.mouse":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.position":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.slider":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.sortable":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.touch-punch":"0.2.3","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.autocomplete":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.accordion":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.tabs":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.menu":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.dialog":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.resizable":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.button":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.tooltip":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.effects":"1.11.4","libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.datepicker":"1.11.4"}},"shim":{"liveconnection/managers/connection":{"deps":["liveconnection/libs/sockjs-0.3.4"]},"liveconnection/libs/sockjs-0.3.4":{"exports":"SockJS"},"libs/setValueFromArray":{"exports":"set"},"libs/getValueFromArray":{"exports":"get"},"fly/libs/jquery.mobile-1.3.2":["version!fly/utils/jquery-mobile-init"],"libs/backbone.marionette":{"deps":["jquery","version!fly/libs/underscore","version!fly/libs/backbone"],"exports":"Marionette"},"fly/libs/underscore-1.5.1":{"exports":"_"},"fly/libs/backbone-1.0.0":{"deps":["version!fly/libs/underscore","jquery"],"exports":"Backbone"},"libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.tabs-1.11.4":["jquery","version!libs/jquery/ui/jquery.ui.core","version!fly/libs/jquery.widget"],"libs/jquery/flexslider-2.1":["jquery"],"libs/dataTables.fixedColumns-3.0.4":["jquery","version!libs/dataTables"],"libs/dataTables.fixedHeader-2.1.2":["jquery","version!libs/dataTables"],"https://sports.cbsimg.net/js/CBSi/app/VideoPlayer/AdobePass-min.js":["https://sports.cbsimg.net/js/CBSi/util/Utils-min.js"]},"map":{"*":{"adobe-pass":"https://sports.cbsimg.net/js/CBSi/app/VideoPlayer/AdobePass-min.js","facebook":"https://connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js","facebook-debug":"https://connect.facebook.net/en_US/all/debug.js","google":"https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js","google-platform":"https://apis.google.com/js/client:platform.js","google-csa":"https://www.google.com/adsense/search/async-ads.js","google-javascript-api":"https://www.google.com/jsapi","google-client-api":"https://apis.google.com/js/api:client.js","gpt":"https://securepubads.g.doubleclick.net/tag/js/gpt.js","newsroom":"https://c2.taboola.com/nr/cbsinteractive-cbssports/newsroom.js","recaptcha":"https://www.google.com/recaptcha/api.js?onload=loadRecaptcha&render=explicit","recaptcha_ajax":"https://www.google.com/recaptcha/api/js/recaptcha_ajax.js","supreme-golf":"https://sgapps-staging.supremegolf.com/search/assets/js/bundle.js","taboola":"https://cdn.taboola.com/libtrc/cbsinteractive-cbssports/loader.js","twitter":"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js","video-avia":"https://vidtech.cbsinteractive.com/avia-js/1.9.0/player/avia.min.js","video-avia-cvui":"https://vidtech.cbsinteractive.com/avia-js/1.9.0/legacy/cvui/cvui.min.js","video-cvp":"https://vidtech.cbsinteractive.com/cvp/1.2.2/cvp.min.js","video-cvui":"https://vidtech.cbsinteractive.com/cvp/1.2.2/cvui.min.js","video-ima3":"https://imasdk.googleapis.com/js/sdkloader/ima3.js","video-ima3-dai":"https://imasdk.googleapis.com/js/sdkloader/ima3_dai.js","video-utils":"https://sports.cbsimg.net/js/CBSi/util/Utils-min.js","video-vast-tracking":"https://vidtech.cbsinteractive.com/sb55/vast-js/vtg-vast-client.js"}},"waitSeconds":300});





Source link

Uncategorized

Three Stars from Day 3 of WJC: Canada’s McTavish joins elite company – Sportsnet.ca

Published

on


Canada and the U.S. dominated in their second game of the tournament while Czechia and Finland went toe-to-toe and needed a shootout to determine a winner on Day 3 of the World Junior Hockey Championship.

The Canadian team rebounded from a sluggish performance with an 11-1 win over Slovakia, a game in which captain Mason McTavish added his name to the country’s record books.

Against Switzerland, the United States took their game to another gear that their opponent could not match as they cruised to a 7-1 victory to improve to 2-0 at the tournament.

Advertisement

Finland dropped a crucial point as they had to overcome a 2-0 deficit but were able to pick up the shootout win over their rival Czechia.

Here is a look at the top performances from Day 3 of the world juniors.

3rd Star: Luke Hughes, USA

Coming from a great hockey family, Luke Hughes is making most of his opportunity as one of the top defencemen for the U.S. 

The younger brother of Quinn and Jack displayed his mobility and vision against Switzerland with a three-point effort. He now has five points in his first two games of the tournament — more than either of his brothers ever achieved at this event in fewer games.

Hughes leads all defenceman in scoring so far in the tournament and is tied for fourth overall.

Advertisement

The 18-year-old played 21:18 against the Swiss to lead the U.S. in ice time playing on the top pairing with Brock Faber. His play from this point will be a crucial part of his team’s success given the creativity he displayed, especially on Matt Coronato’s goal in the second period.

.acf-block-preview .instagram-twitter-container {
width: 340px;
margin: 0 auto;
}

He made another top-notch set up on Thomas Bordeleau’s power-play goal in the third period as he delayed enough to get the defenders to pull towards his side of the ice.

.acf-block-preview .instagram-twitter-container {
width: 340px;
margin: 0 auto;
}

2nd Star: Carter Mazur, USA

Coming into the tournament, Carter Mazur is looking to build off an impressive season at the University of Denver. 

Advertisement

While he was in a scoring slump in his first NCAA season, the Detroit Red Wings prospect made a call to his NHL team’s assistant director of player development, Daniel Cleary. After that, he would go on to finish with 14 goals and 38 points in 41 games.

Those tips have now turned Mazur into a scoring machine as he accounted for two of the team’s seven goals and was also named the player of the game as the top line of Mazur, Landon Slaggert, and Thomas Bordeleau had an impressive performance against Switzerland

After a scoreless first period, Mazur wasn’t going to make any mistake on a point-blank chance in front of the net with Mackie Samoskevich making a great pass from behind the net.

.acf-block-preview .instagram-twitter-container {
width: 340px;
margin: 0 auto;
}

With the Americans looking to add to their lead, Mazur was once again the beneficiary of a great pass from Slaggert as he made no mistake from the front of the net.

Advertisement

.acf-block-preview .instagram-twitter-container {
width: 340px;
margin: 0 auto;
}

He added another assist on Slaggert’s goal later in the period for his third point of the game. Through his first two games at the world juniors, Mazur has four points and is tied for sixth in scoring.

1st Star: Mason McTavish, Canada

On a night where Canada dominated from start to finish, Mason McTavish joined some elite company with a night he’ll certainly remember for a long time.

The 19-year-old joined Mario Lemieux, Simon Gagné, Brayden Schenn, Taylor Raddysh, Maxime Comtois and teammate Connor Bedard as the only players to score four goals in a single world junior game for Canada. The tournament record for goals in a single game is held by Sweden’s Ola Rosander who had six back in 1987.

With his performance against Slovakia in a dominant win for Canada, McTavish now sits atop the scoring lead with eight points in two games after registering six points in this game.

Advertisement

McTavish scored his first goal of the game on a breakaway — with Canada already leading 5-0 midway through the second — making no mistake to beat Tomas Bolo, who came into the game after starter Simon Latkoczy was pulled going into the second period.

His second goal came off a great play by Joshua Roy who flipped the puck in the air to Brennan Othmann who then set up McTavish as he finished with a backhander to put Canada up 7-1. McTavish would complete the second-period hat trick, a day after Alexander Blank did the same for Germany, after a selfless pass from Roy on a 2-on-0 break.

Canada would capitalize on a turnover on McTavish’s fourth goal as Othmann set him up alone in front of the net and he made no mistake.

.acf-block-preview .instagram-twitter-container {
width: 340px;
margin: 0 auto;
}

There was some doubt about whether McTavish would suit up for Canada after playing a fair amount of hockey last season. Making his NHL debut with the Anaheim Ducks, the third overall pick from the 2021 NHL Draft played in a total of 72 games between the NHL, AHL, OHL, Memorial Cup and the Olympics.

Advertisement

Instead, McTavish decided to join the team in Edmonton and take on the role as captain where he has excelled centring Canada’s top line with Bedard and and a rotation of Roy and Othmann.

Canada will now look forward to a matchup against Czechia with a chance to improve to 3-0.

.acf-block-preview .br-related-links-wrapper {
display: grid;
grid-template-columns: repeat(2, 1fr);
gap: 20px;
}

.acf-block-preview .br-related-links-wrapper a {
pointer-events: none;
cursor: default;
text-decoration: none;
color: black;
}




Source link

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Uncategorized

Field of Dreams Game 2022: A celebration of baseball memories in an Iowa cornfield

Published

on




The Field of Dreams is an opportunity for fans and players alike to reflect on the people and places that taught them to love baseball, Jake Mintz writes.



Source link

Continue Reading

Uncategorized

Ravens extend NFL record for consecutive postseason wins following Thursday’s victory over the Titans

Published

on


USA Today

The No. 21 is now synonymous with the longest winning streaks in NFL regular and preseason history. the 2003-04 Patriots won 21 consecutive games, an NFL record. On Thursday night, the Ravens won their 21st consecutive preseason game after securing a 23-10 decision against the Tennessee Titans

Baltimore has not lost a preseason game since 2016. Joe Flacco was their starting quarterback when the streak began, while Steve Smith Jr., who this past year was eligible for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame for the first time, was heading into his final NFL season. Baltimore’s roster also included Terrell Suggs, who was entering his second-to-last season with the franchise. 

Along with not losing preseason games, another constant in Baltimore over the past six years has been kicker Justin Tucker, who is entering his 11th season with the Ravens. Tucker’s field goals of 47, 25 and 47 yards on Thursday night helped Baltimore pull out the win after falling behind midway through the second quarter. 

Advertisement

The Ravens won Thursday’s game by winning the turnover margin while holding the Titans to 1 of 3 red zone efficiency. One of those turnovers was scooped up by Kyle Hamilton, the Ravens’ first-round pick in this past year’s draft. 

Baltimore won despite the efforts of Malik Willis, the Titans’ rookie quarterback who overcame a slow start to score his first NFL touchdown, a 7-yard run early in the second quarter. Speaking of quarterbacks, the Ravens received a strong night from Tyler Huntley, who completed all but two of his 18 pass attempts that included his game-winning touchdown pass to Shemar Bridges



Source link

Advertisement

Continue Reading

Trending