July 23, 2019

Spencer Dinwiddie leads all scorers with 28 points

The Cleveland Cavaliers put up a good fight last night but ultimately lost to the Brooklyn Nets 113-107. A good win for the Nets, as the team is now back over .500, improving their record to 34-33 overall, while the Cavaliers fell to 16-49 overall and 6-25 on the road with the loss. The Nets also improved its wins against Eastern Conference teams, which could be needed to sort out placement and ties if the Nets are still in the running for a playoff position at the end of the regular season.

After the NBA All-Star break and into the month of March, the playoffs are on everyone’s mind, especially, as with the Nets, if your team hasn’t been there in a few years. As much as Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson would like not to have the NBA playoffs front and center, at this point there is no escaping it, particularly when a reporter asks, what tonight’s win means for a playoff push.

“Yeah, I think there was a moment in the fourth quarter where we were desperate,” Coach Atkinson responded. “And even in the third, they had an eight-point lead, I think. I’m glad we kept our cool though because you know, maybe last year or two years ago we would lose that lead, or the lead would go to 16 or 18. The fact that we kept our cool, weathered the storm and came back was important. We won that game without playing great.”

Atkinson didn’t respond directly to the playoffs. But reading between the lines, if a team doesn’t know how to come back from a deficit, it probably won’t be in NBA playoff conversation at least from a positive perspective. In years past, the Nets would get into trouble in the third quarter even after leading in the first half. However, players have bought into Atkinson’s system and have learned to take back control when they are not leading coming out of the third quarter, as in this case, Cleveland led 85-80.

“I thought our defense was good all night,” Atkinson said starting to explain how the Nets were able to take control of the fourth quarter. “I think we did a pretty good job – they hit a few too many three’s – but for the most part, we defended. I think Caris (LeVert) had an important stretch there when we were struggling and couldn’t really score. He made some big plays, started to get downhill, and obviously, Spencer (Dinwiddie) too. Those two guys, I thought they turned it up. Our offense, we’re struggling. And we really needed those two guys tonight. I think they did a good job.”

“We needed stops,” Nets point guard D’Angelo Russell proffered. “Teams get going like that. Any team in the league can get going. It’s hard to stop the bleeding without getting stops so we knew we had to get stops.”

And, the Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Larry Drew pretty much co-signed on how the Brooklyn Nets were able to take down his team.

“First of all, come out ready to play at the start of the game,” Drew said. “I believe we had eight turnovers in the first quarter, but we were able to overcome that. Playing on the road you just can’t play like that. Going down the stretch we just didn’t make the plays on either end. Brooklyn’s been playing well. You have to give credit where credit is due. They’ve really been getting after people. We allowed them to speed us up a little bit. When it came down to it down the stretch, we just didn’t make the plays. We had some bad shots. We had a couple of turnovers and we let it get away from us.”

At the end of the day, it was the Nets’ defense and keeping their composure under pressure.

Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie came off the bench and led all scorers with 28 points, four rebounds, and five assists. D'Angelo Russell registered 25 points, four rebounds, and five assists, and three steals; Jarrett Allen had a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds, and he added three assists to his total; Caris LeVert accumulated 14 points and four rebounds off the bench; Rodions Kurucs chipped in 10 points and seven rebounds, and; Ed Davis crashed the boards with 12 rebounds.

The Nets’ bench outscored the Cavs’ bench 50-45 points. Brooklyn also edged the Cavs 7-3 (+4) in blocks, 58-38 (+20) in points in the paint and 22-14 (+8) in second-chance points.

Leading scorers for the Cavaliers were Kevin Love with 24 points, 16 rebounds, and four assists; David Nwaba added 22 points off the bench; Larry Nance Jr. registered 17 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, and four steals; Jordan Clarkson came off the bench and accumulated 14 points and seven rebounds, and; Colin Sexton chipped in 12 points and five assists.

The Cavaliers will travel to Miami to take on the Heat on Friday, March 8, 2019, at 8:00 p.m. ET., and the Brooklyn Nets won’t see its next opponent, the Atlanta Hawks until Saturday, March 9, 2019, in Atlanta. The Nets will then travel back to Brooklyn and take on the Detroit Pistons on Monday, March 11, 2019, at 7:30 p.m. at the Barclays Center.

Jets Keep Miami Winless

October 17, 2011

After three straight road losses, the New York Jets needed a win any way they could get one. The 0-4 Miami Dolphins came to town just at the right time, although the way the game began, it was hard to tell which team started the game without a victory.

Looking to get his offense on track, Jets head coach Rex Ryan elects to receive after winning the coin toss. They rewarded him by going 3 and out without gaining a first down. Mark Sanchez missing on his 2 pass attempts. It would only get uglier for Gang Green the rest of the quarter as they would be out-gained 176-10 in total yards. Miami had 6 first downs to none for the Jets. Said head coach Rex Ryan, "again a slow start. I don't know why. It seems like it's our m.o."

After the Dolphins took a 3-0 lead (23-yard field goal by Dan Carpenter) they were poised to increase the lead with the ball on the Jets 18 after the kick-off bounces off Brian Mc Intyre. Miami's quarterback Matt Moore looks for wide receiver Brandon Marshall, but Jets cornerback Darrell Revis steps in front for the interception. 100 yards later, the Jets take a 7-3 lead. The Fish would get within 1 after another Carpenter field goal (21 yards) when the Jets offense finally woke up.

With more than 5 minutes to go before the half, Sanchez directs them on a 19 play, 81-yard drive ending in a Sanchez quarterback sneak from 6 yards out. It was his second rushing touchdown of the year. Prior to that, the offense was abysmal. Four times the offense took the field and 4 times they ended up punting. Still, the defense allowed them to get their feet under them as Revis smothered Marshall. Moore's receivers dropped passes that would have kept drives alive. In fact, Marshall dropped a potential touchdown pass with the Dolphins on the Jets 5 yard line.

Miami failed to do anything to begin the third quarter while Sanchez wanted to continue moving the offense. Getting the ball with 7:16 left, he moves them 79 yards on 16 plays. Nick Folk caps the drive with a 28-yard field goal. From that point on it was evident why the Dolphins may not win a game for the rest of the year.

Just as the Jets could not move the ball to begin the game, Miami had a problem moving the ball as the game went on. They punted on their only 2 possessions of the third quarter gaining only 1 first down as a result of a Jets penalty. The fourth quarter wasn't any kinder as New York extended the lead to 24-6.

After another 3 and out, the Jets begin at midfield and watch as veteran La Danian Tomlinson gains 12 yards out of the backfield. Sanchez, out of the shotgun, finds Santonio Holmes across the middle for a short, quick pass which he turns into a 38-yard touchdown catch-and-run.

The New York Jets did exactly what they were supposed to do against a Miami Dolphin team that had come to Met Life Stadium with no wins. It was a much-needed victory after losing their last 3 games on the road. They still have a lot of work to do as the running game once again was not a factor. Sanchez (14-25, 201 yards and no interceptions) did not put up numbers that will raise any eyebrows either. The offensive line did a good job of giving him time to complete passes.

Still, the New York Jets were at a serious crossroad and needed this victory as the schedule has them hosting the San Diego Chargers followed by a bye week. Then they play 2 straight division games at Buffalo before hosting New England. Their season could be determined by the outcome of those games.

Upon Further Review: New York Jets, Buffalo Bills, Pittsburgh Steelers, Denver Broncos, Tim Tebow

Well, that didn't last long! Not saying that the New York Jets acted and celebrated like they won their second Super Bowl in team history but after a pre-season that saw them score 1 offensive touchdown they were absolutely giddy slamming the Buffalo Bills in their home opener. They were brought back to reality quickly when they traveled to Pittsburgh to face a Steelers team that had a chip on their shoulders for a couple of reasons: First, they lost to a quarterback (Peyton Manning) who hadn't played a down in the previous year. Second, the last time they stepped on Heinz Field, they saw Tim Tebow throw the game-winning touchdown in overtime to end their season.

From the start, it appeared the Jets picked up right where they left off in their demolishing of the Bills. They spotted the Steelers a 3-0 lead then saw QB Mark Sanchez march them down 80 yards for a 7-3 lead. Pittsburgh responded with another field goal and from that point on, it was all downhill for Gang Green.

The offense that moved so fluidly on their first possession (Mark Sanchez completed 4 of 5 passes for 80 yards and 1 touchdown) sputtered the rest of the game. Defensively, they could not come up with the big stops when they needed them. Pittsburgh was 8 of 15 on third down conversions. Of the eight completions, the Steelers had to go at least eight yards.

Now for the second time in this early season, the Jets have to face another division rival in the Miami Dolphins, this time on the road. The Fish are coming off an impressive win over the Raiders. The Jets are shaking their heads trying to figure out how they could look so good against the Bills and so bad against the Steelers. Another shaky Sanchez performance and you know the name that the fans will be screaming for...

Lost in the second half offensive explosion when the Giants came back in their game against Tampa Bay was the performance by backup running back Andre Brown. He was forced into action after starter Ahmad Bradshaw left the game in the second quarter with a neck injury. Brown finished with 71 yards on 13 carries and 1 touchdown. When the Giants faced Carolina Thursday night, they did so without Bradshaw, David Diehl, Dominic Hixon, and Hakeem Nicks...

Of all the teams to start 2-0, none is more surprising than the Arizona Cardinals. They went into New England to face a Patriots team that had not lost a home opener since 2002. The Cardinals did give the Pats a chance to steal a win after Arizona running back Vince Wilfolk fumbled with 1:01 left in the game. Two Patriots penalties, the first a 30-yard Danny Woodhead touchdown run called back as tight end Ron Gronkowski was caught holding and the second, Gronkowski is called for a false start, moved the ball back to the Cardinals 24-yard line. The normally reliable field goal kicker Stephen Gostkowski pushed the attempt wide left. The number of fans who got bumped from their suicide pool is still being counted...

Houston, San Diego, Philadelphia (both of the Eagles wins were by 1 point), Atlanta and San Francisco are the other undefeated teams heading into week 3...Dallas, Washington, Baltimore, Denver, Chicago, Detroit, and Minnesota were brought back to reality in their week 2 losses...New Orleans is one of six teams that are 0-2 after losing to Carolina. The other five, Tennessee, Jacksonville, Cleveland, Kansas City, and Oakland are just plain bad...Finally, not much was made after week 1 about the job the replacement refs did. It was quite different after week 2 when the mistakes were glaring. From shaky pass interference calls, non-holding calls to simply failing to spot the ball correctly on the yard line, it looks like things are going to get worse before they get better. Still, the powers that be, namely Commissioner Roger Goodell is intent on squeezing the referee's union. You have the best players on the planet being officiated by division 3 refs. One ref was removed prior to the Saints/Panthers game as he posted pictures of himself wearing Saints gear and claiming his allegiance to the team. The NFL, claiming they are doing everything they can to protect the players, are putting them at severe risk with 3rd tier referees.

NFL Personnel Changes

January 17, 2016

McAdoo, Gase, Kelly gain new coaching positions; other prominent names aren't so lucky, yet

NY Giants announced that offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo has been promoted to the position of head coach. The hiring of McAdoo makes him the second-youngest head coach in the NFL behind the newly crowned Miami Dolphin head coach Adam Gase. Even though other candidates were interviewed, the Giants decided to promote from within thus keeping the continuity that the organization cherishes most. The offense, under McAdoo, has been successful and gave Eli Manning’s statistics a nice boost. It remains to be seen how McAdoo will address the defense which ranked dead last in the league and set all of the wrong records.

Former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly has landed in San Francisco. The 49ers have announced the hiring of Chip Kelly as their new head coach. This announcement comes after management fired Jim Tomsula after one season. Unlike the last year of his tenure with the Eagles, Chip Kelly will not be in control of making player personnel decisions, allowing him to solely focus on coaching. In the 49ers, Kelly has two quarterbacks in Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert who can be good fits to run his style of offense but it is also a team that has lost talent due to retirement or trades.

Other NFL coaching hires:

Cleveland Browns hired former Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson. Jackson was a hot name in the head coach carousel and was on the interview list for the NY Giants opening. He spurned the stability of the Giants opting to join an organization in transition as the offseason firings affected the head coach position as well as the front office. In his first move as head coach, Jackson will not hire an offensive coordinator opting to the plays himself. While he is not the first or only head coach to call the offense, most coaches still retain the services of offensive coordinators.

Tennessee Titans named former interim coach Mike Mularkey as their new head coach. He had a 2-7 record with the Titans as the interim coach. The Titans also hired a new GM and more changes are likely now that Mularkey has the head coach position. Many of the assistants that he inherited from predecessor Ken Whisenhunt's regime have contracts that expire on February 15th.

Philadelphia Eagles named Doug Pederson as their new head coach. The Eagles pursued former NY Giants head coach Tom Coughlin for the vacancy. All indicators seemed to point to Coughlin taking the reigns but ultimately Coughlin withdrew his name from consideration. Pederson was a quarterbacks coach under former Eagles head coach Andy Reid and Pederson followed Reid to Kansas City becoming an offensive coordinator.

Tampa Buccaneers promoted offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter to head coach replacing former head coach Lovie Smith. Once Smith was let go, it was believed that Koetter was the person management wanted to fill the void.

The Miami Dolphins hire former Bears offensive coordinator Adam Gase as their new head coach, making Gase the youngest head coach in the league.

It is worth noting that Gase will be the ninth head coach for the Dolphins since 2004.

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