Elias Says: March 15, 2018

Warriors beat Lakers for the seventh straight time

The Warriors topped the Lakers by a score of 117-106 on Wednesday. Golden State has now defeated the Lakers each of the last seven times they have played them during the regular season, which is the longest winning streak the Warriors have ever fashioned against Los Angeles. Prior to this current streak, Golden State’s longest winning streak against the Lakers was six from December 1959 to February 1960, during Wilt Chamberlain’s rookie season, when the Warriors were located in Philadelphia and the Lakers in Minneapolis, and from November 1993 to November 1994.

Durant extends his 20-point streak against the Lakers

Kevin Durant scored a game high 26 points in the Warriors’ win over the Lakers on Wednesday. Durant has now scored 20 or more points in each of the last 28 games he has played against the Lakers, dating back to December 2009. That is by far the longest current streak of consecutive games with at least 20 points any NBA player has against one team (second longest: 18 by Russell Westbrook against Phoenix and Durant against Detroit).

Two other players in NBA history scored 20 or more points in at least 28 consecutive games against the Lakers: Oscar Robertson (56, 1961 to 1967) and Wilt Chamberlain (55, 1959 to 1964).

Wizards come up with a huge comeback win in Boston

The Wizards overcame a 20-point deficit to defeat the Celtics in double overtime on Wednesday. It’s the second time Washington came back from a deficit of 20 or more points to win on the road this season, having also done that on February 14 against the Knicks at Madison Square Garden (27-point deficit). That equals the total number of such wins the Wizards had in the previous nine seasons combined prior to 2017-18. Washington was just 2-99 on the road when facing a 20 or more point deficit from 2008-09 to 2016-17. The only other NBA team with multiple 20-plus point comeback wins on the road this season is Golden State (two).

Morris brothers combine for 51 points in Boston

Marcus Morris scored 31 points for the Celtics while his brother, Markieff, produced 20 points for the visiting Wizards on Wednesday. It’s the first time in nearly 24 years that a pair of brothers combined for 50 or more points in the same games, since March 29, 1994, when Cleveland’s Gerald Wilkins scored 28 points and Dominique Wilkins registered 26 points for the Clippers.

Undrafted Simmons dominates Bucks

Jonathon Simmons scored 35 points leading the Magic to a win over the Bucks on Wednesday. Simmons, who entered the NBA as an undrafted free agent in 2015, has produced two 30-point games this season, having scored 34 points against Cleveland on February 6. No other undrafted player has more than one 30-point game this season.

Simmons’ points scored are the most in a game by an undrafted player in Orlando’s franchise history, besting the previous high of 34 by Darrell Armstrong (2001), Troy Hudson (2002) and Simmons (this season).

Hield’s flawless performance lifts Kings

Buddy Hield scored a team-high 24 points and did not commit a turnover in Sacramento’s overtime win over Miami on Wednesday. It marked the 14th time Hield scored 20 or more points in a game in his career but it was only the second time he did so without committing a turnover. Hield’s other such game came in a 24-point performance on December 23, 2017.

Van Riemsdyk’s hat trick lifts Leafs

James van Riemsdyk recorded the third hat trick of his NHL career and second hat trick for the Maple Leafs when he scored three goals in Toronto’s 6–5 shootout win over the Stars. Van Riemsdyk’s first hat trick for the Leafs came last season in a win over Nashville (Nov. 15, 2016). Over the last ten years the only player other than Van Riemsdyk to register a hat trick for the Maple Leafs in each of two consecutive seasons is Tyler Bozak with one each in 2014–15 and 2015–16.

Zibanejad ties it in the third….and wins it in OT

Mika Zibanejad scored the tying and winning goals in the Rangers’ 4–3 overtime victory against the Penguins at Madison Square Garden. Zibanejad’s power play goal with 3:17 left to play in the third period tied the score at 3–3, and his goal two minutes and 53 seconds into overtime earned the win for the Rangers. Since the NHL’s introduction of the five-minute overtime format in 1983, only two other Rangers players scored a regular-season overtime goal after tallying the final goal of regulation time within the last five minutes of the third period: Theo Fleury against the Flyers on Jan. 16, 2001 and Derek Stepan versus the Blue Jackets on April 6, 2015.

Kreider has a hand in all four Ranger goals

Chris Kreider produced the first four-point game of his NHL career in the Rangers’ 4–3 overtime win against the Penguins. Kreider scored the first goal for the Blueshirts and then assisted on the Rangers’ last three goals. This was only the fourth time in the last 20 years that a Rangers player tallied as many as four points in a game while scoring or assisting on every New York goal. The other Rangers to do that since 1998 were Theo Fleury (2–2–4 vs. Flyers on Jan. 16, 2001), Michael Nylander (1–3–4 vs. Hurricanes on Nov. 19, 2005) and Ryan Callahan (1–3–4 vs. Jets on April 1, 2013).

McDavid is thriving at home

Connor McDavid recorded two assists in the Oilers’ overtime loss to the Sharks in Edmonton. McDavid tallied “only” 24 points in his 25 home games this season through the end of January (nine goals, 15 assists), but he’s averaging two points per home game since then, with 22 points over 11 games at Rogers Place (13 goals, nine assists).

Couture continues his mastery of the Oilers

Logan Couture tallied one goal and two assists for the Sharks in their 4–3 overtime win at Edmonton. Couture has scored 18 goals (in 29 games) versus the Oilers in his nine-year NHL career, his highest goal total against any team. The only other players who’ve scored at least 18 goals versus Edmonton since the 2009–10 season are Couture’s teammate, Joe Pavelski (21), and the Stars’ Jamie Benn (18).

Another two-goal game for a Devils rookie

New Jersey rookie Blake Coleman scored two goals in an NHL game for the first time when the Devils beat the Golden Knights, 8–3, in Las Vegas. Coleman is the third rookie to score two goals in a game for the Devils this season, joining Jesper Bratt (Oct. 9 at Buffalo) and Nico Hischier (Oct. 19 at Ottawa and Dec. 27 vs. Detroit). This is the first time that three different rookies produced a multiple-goal for the Devils in the same season since 1991–92. The rookie trio with multi-goal games for New Jersey that season was Valeri Zelepukin (2), Kevin Todd and Alexander Semak.

Seven different players scored a goal for the Devils in Wednesday’s game. It was the first time that they had at least seven goal scorers in one game since their 7–1 win versus the Blues in Newark on Jan. 21, 2014, and it was the first time that New Jersey had that many players score a goal in a road game since seven players tallied at least once in a 9–0 victory over the Thrashers in Atlanta on March 10, 2000.