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in Diskussionen Allgemein über die Kryptowelt 29.08.2018 05:58
von panxing18 • 102 Beiträge | 204 Punkte

James Harden predicted Chris Paul would ”come back and drop 30” after not playing his best in Houston’s playoff opener.

Close enough.

Paul had 27 points and Gerald Green came off the bench to score a playoff career-high 21 as the Rockets used a huge second quarter to cruise to a 102-82 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday night that gave them a 2-0 lead in the first-round playoff series.

Paul [url=http://www.ramscheapstore.com]Youth Los Angeles Chargers Jerseys[/url] , a nine-time All-Star, scored 14 points and tied a season high with six turnovers in the first game. Early on, it was clear that Paul wouldn’t struggle again as he had 15 points, three assists, two steals and a block by halftime.

Paul, who joined the Rockets in an offseason trade from the Clippers, finished with eight assists and three steals.

”I know he was beating himself up after Game 1, he called me and we talked a little bit and I said: `Don’t worry about it, the win’s all that matters so just come back and be aggressive,”’ Harden said.

Paul seemed to listen to his teammate.

”Just tried to push the tempo, tried to be aggressive … getting into the lane and getting a couple of easy ones early helped us,” Paul said.

Houston fell behind early but went on top for good with a 37-point second quarter, powered by four 3-pointers from Green [url=http://www.cincinnatibengalsteamonline.com/vontaze-burfict-jersey]Vontaze Burfict Youth Jersey[/url] , and the Wolves didn’t threaten again.

The top-seeded Rockets won the opener by three behind a 44-point performance from James Harden on a night when most of the team struggled offensively. Things were much different Wednesday when Harden went 2 for 18 and had just 12 points as one of four Rockets who finished in double figures.

Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns had another disappointing game, scoring all of his five points in the first quarter after being criticized for finishing with eight in the series opener.

Towns said he can’t be frustrated with how the first two games have gone for him.

”I think we all have to be better, including myself,” he said. ”We’ve got to find ways. We can come up with some tweaks and be ready for the next game.”

The All-Star big man went to the bench with about seven minutes left in the third quarter and didn’t return, and coach Tom Thibodeau said Towns needs to ”play with energy.”

The Rockets tried to wear Towns down by using Clint Capela and the much-bulkier Nene on him in the first half.

”It’s playoffs and it’s a different ball game,” Towns said. ”The physicality is different and the way the game is played is different. We’ve got to adjust, accordingly.”

Jamal Crawford scored 16 points for the eighth-seeded Timberwolves, who are in the playoffs for the first time since 2004.

Houston was up by 22 points with about nine minutes left when Paul made two quick baskets to make it 91-65. The second came on a twirling off-balance layup over Nemanja Bjelica that earned him a standing ovation from the home crowd.

The Rockets were up by 15 at halftime and opened the second half with a 10-2 run to make it 65-42 with about nine minutes left in the third.

The Timberwolves had scored seven straight points later in the third when Green, the hometown player who was signed off the street in December, hit his fifth 3-pointer to leave the Rockets up 74-53 with about 2 1/2 minutes left in the quarter.

He was thrilled to be able to star in a playoff game in the city where he grew up.

”This moment that I’m living right now is everything that I’ve dreamed of since I was five or six years old,” Green said.

The Timberwolves led by as many as nine early and the game was tied with about eight minutes left in the second quarter before Houston scored 16 straight points, highlighted by three 3-pointers from Green, to take a 46-30 lead with about 4 1/2 minutes left in the first half.

TIP-INS

Timberwolves: Justin Patton sat out with a sore left foot. … Butler finished with 11 points. … Andrew Wiggins had 13 points and eight rebounds. … Minnesota shot 5 of 18 from 3-point range.

Rockets: Ryan Anderson [url=http://www.clevelandindiansteamshops.com/authentic-andrew-miller-jersey]Andrew Miller Jersey[/url] , who returned to practice Tuesday, didn’t play after also sitting out in Game 1. Coach Mike D’Antoni said Anderson, who has a sprained left ankle, is likely to play Saturday. … Trevor Ariza had 15 points. … Houston made 16 of 52 3-pointers.

SPECIAL GUESTS

Rapper Travis Scott, who is a frequent visitor to Rockets games, sat courtside with girlfriend Kylie Jenner. It was the first time Jenner has attended a game in Houston since the couple welcomed their first child, a daughter named Stormi, in February. Also sitting courtside was rapper Lil’ Wayne, who received a loud ovation when he was introduced on the Jumbotron in the fourth quarter.

THEY SAID IT

Paul on Houston winning big despite Harden’s tough night: ”You give him 18 shots next game and see what happens,” he said with a grin.

UP NEXT

The series moves to Minnesota for Game 3 on Saturday.





San Diego right-hander Tyson Ross struggled through a forgettable stint as a member of the Texas Rangers last season but is enjoying a rejuvenation this year with the Padres.

Ross said he won’t bring any bad feelings with him to the mound when the two teams square off in the middle contest of the three-game, interleague set on Tuesday at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas.

Texas took the opening game of the series 7-4 on Monday as Shin-Soo Choo had three hits and drove in one of the Rangers’ five runs in the pivotal sixth inning. The victory was Texas’ eighth in its past nine games.

Ross (5-5, 3.34 ERA) will try to help San Diego even the set while the Rangers will counter with right-hander Austin Bibens-Dirkx (1-1 [url=http://www.buccaneerscheapstore.com/carlton-davis-jersey-cheap]Carlton Davis Youth Jersey[/url] , 4.58).

Ross had surgery prior to the 2017 campaign to address thoracic outlet syndrome and made only 12 appearances for Texas before he was released in mid-September after posting a 7.71 ERA.

“I’d probably have struggled no matter where I was last year, just being five, six months out of surgery and picking up a baseball again,” Ross told MLB.com. “It was a lot of ups and downs in that year with Texas. But I think it was growing pains, and I was going to go through it no matter where I was, really.”

Ross will make his 16th start of the season. The Padres have won six of his past eight starts and are 10-5 overall when he takes the mound.

Ross was the losing pitcher on June 21 at San Francisco in his most recent outing despite tossing seven innings in which he allowed just one run. He received zero run support for the second consecutive outing and has worked five or more innings in 14 of his 15 starts, including nine quality outings.

Prior to Monday’s win, Texas manager Jeff Banister was campaigning for a spot for Choo in this year’s All-Star Game. Choo has never played in the midseason classic in his 14-year major league career.

Choo reached base for the 38th straight game, which is a career-high, with the first of his three hits on Monday.

“With how things have gone for us on a day-to-day basis, and what he’s done, I believe that Choo should be recognized as a guy that should have an opportunity to be an All-Star,” Banister opined. “Choo’s an on-base guy first [url=http://www.atlantafalconsteamonline.com/logan-paulsen-jersey]Authentic Logan Paulsen Jersey[/url] , and when he’s doing that, he’s seeing pitches. He’s focused more on driving the ball that he gets to hit. He’s really good at it, and it keeps him from chasing balls out of the zone.”

Bibens-Dirkx will take the bump for his fourth start of the season and will be working on extended five days’ rest after earning his first win of the year in the Rangers’ 3-2 victory on Wednesday at Kansas City. He was recalled from Triple-A Round Rock prior to that start for his second stint with Texas in 2018.

Bibens-Dirkx is the second Texas starter to win without a strikeout since the start of 2012 (also Colby Lewis, April 29, 2016, vs. Los Angeles), and is the first to do it on the road since Tommy Hunter on Aug. 22, 2010, at Baltimore.

Bibens-Dirkx’ unique outing last Wednesday is also the only quality start without a strikeout in MLB this season. He has never faced the Padres.
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