Elias Says: March 3, 2018

Another season with 200 threes for Curry

Stephen Curry made his 200th three-point field goal of the season while scoring a team-high 28 points in Golden State’s win over the Hawks in Atlanta on Friday night. It’s the sixth time Curry has made at least 200 three-pointers in a season in his career, the most such seasons for any player. Curry will probably not be alone atop that list for long, as his teammate, Klay Thompson needs only four more three-point field goals to reach 200 in a season for the sixth time in his career. Curry and Thompson entered the 2017-18 tied with Ray Allen in that category.

There were only 34 instances of a player making 200 or more three pointers in a season in the first 34 seasons that the NBA played with the three-point line (1979-80 to 2012-13). In the last five seasons, there have been 31 (and counting) instances.

Westbrook hits a big shot in his 43-point performance

Russell Westbrook scored 43 points, including a go-ahead three-point field goal with 56 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, lifting the Thunder to a win over the Suns on Friday night. Westbrook has made three of the last four three-point field goals he has attempted with a chance to give his team the lead in the final minute of the fourth quarter or overtime, all coming since December. Prior to that, Westbrook was just 4-for-27 (14.8 percent) from three-point range in that situation in his career.

Westbrook became the fifth different visiting player to register a 40-point game on the Suns home court this season, joining James Harden, Damian Lillard, Khris Middleton and Donovan Mitchell. Over the last 26 seasons, the only other teams to allow that many different players to score 40 points in a game on their home court are the 2017-18 Trail Blazers (five), 2016-17 Lakers (six), 2007-08 Grizzlies (five) and 2005-06 Bucks (five).

76ers overcome Hornets with strong fourth quarter

The 76ers outscored the Hornets by a score of 36-19 in the fourth quarter en route to a 110-99 victory on Friday. It marked the second time the Sixers outscored their opponent by more than 15 points in the fourth quarter in a victory this season, having also done that on January 20 against Milwaukee (32-14). Philadelphia had only one such win in the previous six seasons combined prior to 2017-18, outscoring the Nuggets 27-9 in the fourth quarter in a victory in Denver on March 25, 2015.

An unusual performance by Bogdanovic

Bojan Bogdanovic scored 14 points in the Pacers win over the Bucks on Friday. Bogdanovic’s points came in unusual fashion, with 12 coming via the free throw line and the other two on a field goal. Bogdanovic is the first player to convert at least 12 free throws while making one or fewer shots from the field in a game in over seven years, since San Antonio’s Manu Ginobili made 13 free throws and only one field goal against Minnesota on December 3, 2010.

Bulls pull off a fourth-quarter comeback

The Bulls overcame an 11-point fourth-quarter deficit to defeat the Mavericks on Friday. Chicago entered the contest with a 0-31 record when trailing by 10 or more points in the fourth quarter this season. Only Atlanta (0-33) and Brooklyn (0-33) had as many losses without a win in those games as the Bulls this season entering Friday’s action.

Gobert gives Jazz a Malone-like performance

Rudy Gobert registered 26 points, 16 rebounds and four blocks leading the Jazz to a victory over the Timberwolves on Friday. Gobert became the first Jazz player to reach those levels in those three categories in the same game in over 24 years, since Hall of Famer Karl Malone recorded 30 points, 17 rebounds and five blocks against Golden State on January 28, 1994.

Miles reigns threes off the bench

C.J. Miles came off the bench and converted six of his nine three-point field goal attempts in a 20-point performance leading Toronto to a win over the Wizards in Washington on Friday. Miles has made at least six three-pointers in a reserve role in five games this season, the second highest total for any NBA player behind Wayne Ellington (8). Miles’ five games with six-or-more three-pointers off the bench are the most in a single season by a Raptors player, breaking the previous mark of four by Dee Brown in 1998-99.

Fournier leads Magic to overtime win over the Pistons

Evan Fournier scored seven of his 17 points in overtime leading the Magic to a win over the Pistons on Friday. That ties the most points Fournier has ever scored in an overtime period, matching his seven-point output against the 76ers on March 20, 2017.

It is only the second time Orlando and Detroit have played an overtime game in the 106 times the two teams have met during the regular season, with the only other such game coming on February 16, 1993. The Magic and Pistons had played 91 consecutive times without being tied at the end of the fourth quarter, which was tied for the longest current streak of that kind for any opposing teams entering Friday’s action. The Celtics and Spurs have played 91 consecutive games that have ended in regulation time against each other.

Lundqvist makes history on his birthday

Henrik Lundqvist made 50 saves in his 3–1 win at Calgary, after making 50 stops in the Rangers’ last game, a 6–5 overtime win at Vancouver on Wednesday. Lundqvist, who turned 36 years old on Friday, is the first NHL goaltender to win two consecutive games in one season while recording at least 50 saves in each game since the league began officially tracking shots on goal in 1955–56. Lundqvist also became the oldest NHL goaltender to win a game played on his birthday since Dwayne Roloson earned a victory on the day he turned 37 on October 12, 2006.

Spooner off to a good start with the Rangers

Ryan Spooner recorded a goal and an assist in the Rangers’ 3–1 victory in Calgary on Friday. Spooner has tallied seven points (one goal, six assists) in the three games he’s played for the Rangers since they acquired him in a trade with the Bruins last week. That ties the record for most points by a player in his first three games for the Rangers, a mark set by Carey Wilson in December 1988 (two goals, five assists) after he joined the Blueshirts in a trade with the Hartford Whalers.

Three straight comeback wins for the Predators

The Predators extended their winning streak to seven games with a 4–3 overtime victory at Vancouver, a game in which Nashville overcame a 2–0 deficit. The Predators have won all three games on their current road trip despite trailing by two goals in each game. They’re the second team in NHL history to win three consecutive games in one season, all on the road, while overcoming a two-goal deficit in each game. The Rangers did that in 1979 with wins at St. Louis (Jan. 9), Colorado (Jan. 10) and Atlanta (Jan. 14).

Galchenyuk’s hat trick lifts Canadiens over Islanders

Alex Galchenyuk, playing in the 400th game of his NHL career, scored three goals for the Canadiens in their 6–3 win against the Islanders in Brooklyn. This was the second hat trick of Galchenyuk’s NHL career and the first hat trick by a Canadiens player in a road game since Oct. 30, 2015, when Dale Weise scored three goals versus the Flames in Calgary. Galchenyuk’s hat trick on Friday was the first by a Montreal player in a game played in the U.S.A. since Feb. 9, 2012, when Max Pacioretty tallied three goals against the Islanders at Nassau Coliseum.

Ekblad joins elite company

Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad scored the 50th goal of his four-season NHL career in Florida’s 4–1 win versus the Sabres on Friday. Ekblad, who turned 22 years old just over three weeks ago (Feb. 7), is the eighth youngest defenseman in NHL history to reach the 50-goal mark and the youngest since Scott Stevens did so at age 21 on Feb. 19, 1986. Six of the seven defensemen to hit the 50-goal plateau at a younger age than Ekblad are in the Hockey Hall of Fame: Phil Housley, Ray Bourque, Paul Coffey, Bobby Orr, Stevens and Larry Murphy.

Two straight days with a game-winning goal for Teravainen

Teuvo Teravainen scored the winning goal in the Hurricanes’ 3–1 victory against the Devils on Friday, after doing the same in Carolina’s win at Philadelphia on Thursday. This is only the fifth time in franchise history that one player scored a game-winning goal for the Whalers or Hurricanes on each of two consecutive days. The other players to do that were Hartford’s Blaine Stoughton (Dec. 11–12, 1982) and Dean Evason (Feb. 18–19, 1986), and Carolina’s Erik Cole (March 5–6, 2008) and Elias Lindholm (Nov. 1–2, 2014). Teravainen scored only five goals over a 40-game span from November 22 through February 16 but he’s scored five goals in six games since then.

Laine nets a pair in Winnipeg’s win

Patrik Laine scored two goals for the Winnipeg Jets in their 4–3 victory against the Red Wings. It was Laine’s third multiple-goal this season and the 10th multi-goal game of his two-season NHL career. Only five other players who debuted in the NHL during the last ten years produced at least ten multiple-goal games over their first two seasons in the league: Steven Stamkos (14), Matt Duchene (11), Jack Eichel (10), Artemi Panarin (10) and Auston Matthews (10).

Another five-point performance for MacKinnon

Nathan MacKinnon scored two goals and assisted on three in the Avalanche’s 7–1 win against the Wild. MacKinnon’s five-point game tied the career high he set earlier this season, with one goal and four assists in Colorado’s 6–2 win versus the Capitals on November 16. This is the fifth time since the Quebec Nordiques moved to Denver in 1995 that an Avs player has scored five or more points in a game at least twice in one season. Peter Forsberg (four times) and Joe Sakic (twice) both did that in 1995–96, the team’s first season in Colorado, Forsberg had two such games in 2002–03, and Paul Stastny produced two five-point games for the Avs in 2007–08.

Senators win with an assist from Karlsson

Erik Karlsson assisted on three goals for the Senators in their 5–4 win against the Golden Knights in Las Vegas. It was Karlsson’s fourth game with three assists this season, the most by any NHL defenseman. The only NHL players with more three-assist games this season than Karlsson are Blake Wheeler (6) and Nathan MacKinnon (5).