Booker, Suns Snap 18-Game Skid to Warriors With 115-111 Win

Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) shoot against Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, March 10, 2019. 

Devin Booker scored nine straight points during a decisive fourth-quarter stretch and finished with 37, and the Phoenix Suns snapped the NBA’s longest active losing streak to one opponent at 18 games by beating the Golden State Warriors 115-111.

Devin Booker scored 13 straight Phoenix points during a decisive fourth-quarter stretch and finished with 37, and the Suns snapped the NBA’s longest active losing streak to one opponent at 18 games by beating the Golden State Warriors 115-111 on Sunday night.

The Suns beat Golden State for the first time since a 107-95 victory on Nov. 9, 2014, and earned their first road win in 20 tries against the Western Conference this season.

Klay Thompson’s two free throws with 1:04 to go made it 111-108. Andre Iguodala secured a rebound after two missed Suns shots but Stephen Curry missed on a 3 with 23 seconds left. Booker then converted two free throws.

Booker’s jumper with 5:01 to play put the Suns ahead, then he made it 102-98 on a 3-pointer at 4:45. Booker hit a fadeaway at the 4:04 mark then scored on a driving one-handed dunk after Phoenix pushed in transition after Curry’s turnover.

Kevin Durant had 25 points before leaving with a bruised right ankle midway through the fourth on a night his teammates struggled from near and far. The cold-shooting Warriors couldn’t overcome Booker’s late onslaught in losing to lowly Phoenix.

Booker was 13 for 23, made all nine of his free throws and also dished out 11 assists for the Suns in a back-to-back and their fourth win in five games.

Splash Brothers Curry and Thompson were a combined 16 of 42 — 8 of 30 on 3s after a 4-for-22 start — and the Warriors went 10 of 43 from beyond the arc.

Curry started 0 for 5 and missed his initial four 3-point tries before connecting from deep 4:35 before halftime and finished with 18 points on 6-of-20 shooting.

Thompson made his first four shots and appeared poised for another shooting gem to follow up his 39-point, nine 3-pointer performance in Friday’s 122-105 win against Denver. He still scored 28 points, going 10 of 22.

Kelly Oubre Jr. added 22 points with four 3s for the Suns, who held a 49-47 rebounding advantage.

Phoenix coach Igor Kokoskov knew limiting turnovers would be a key to the Suns staying in the game. They committed just eight but had a three-game winning streak snapped Saturday at Portland.

The Suns played only 21 hours, 30 minutes later with the Daylight Saving Time change.

The Warriors jumped to a 12-3 lead, getting a pair of quick 3s and a baseline drive and dunk from Thompson before a Phoenix timeout at the 7:56 mark. But Golden State’s lead was just 57-56 at halftime.

TIP-INS

Suns: Booker received a technical with 1:27 left in the third out of frustration on a no-call. … F T.J. Warren missed his 19th consecutive game with right ankle soreness. … Phoenix is 6-29 on the road overall.

Warriors: Draymond Green contributed 11 rebounds and eight assists. … Thompson played his 600th career regular-season game — the 11th player in Warriors history to do so. His 102 postseason games are most ever for any Golden State player. … Thompson had six of his team’s 16 turnovers.

PRACTICE FACILITY

On Monday, the Warriors will announce their plans for continuing to utilize the current practice facility in downtown Oakland at team headquarters after the franchise moves its operation across the bay to San Francisco before next season.

Part of it will include expanded opportunities and activities for youth basketball camps and further community outreach.

Penalty Kill Shines, Capitals Beat Jets to Extend Win Streak

Washington Capitals left wing Carl Hagelin (62), of Sweden, celebrates his goal with the bench during the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Winnipeg Jets, Sunday, March 10, 2019, in Washington.

Carl Hagelin scored the go-ahead goal on a breakaway out of the penalty box, backup Pheonix Copley made 33 saves and the Washington Capitals beat the Winnipeg Jets 3-1 for their seventh consecutive victory.

Carl Hagelin watched helplessly from the penalty box as the short-handed unit he helped transform got to work.

Seconds after stepping out following another successful kill, Hagelin scored the go-ahead goal on a breakaway to help the Washington Capitals beat the Winnipeg Jets 3-1 on Sunday night for their seventh consecutive victory. With players blocking shots and Pheonix Copley stopping the puck, the defending Stanley Cup champions killed off all five minor penalties they took to keep their winning streak alive.

“Obviously I don’t want to be in the box for four minutes like I was, but it turned out OK,” said Hagelin, who took back-to-back penalties in the second period. “It was great to see the guys bail me out.”

Hagelin deserved that payback. Since he and defenseman Nick Jensen joined Washington at the trade deadline, the penalty kill is 19 for 21 and has killed off 16 in a row. For much of the season, a porous penalty kill looked like the Capitals’ biggest obstacle to repeating, and suddenly it has become a strength.

“We’re tweaking things as we go, and we’re getting better, I think, at figuring out what works for us,” said defenseman Matt Niskanen, who returned after taking a one-timer from Patrik Laine off his left hand during one penalty kill. “It’s taken us some time to figure out what we’re good at and how we want to approach it with our tactics. I think as we’re getting to this time of year, we’re starting to play with a little bit more desperation.”

The desperation was there against the Central Division-leading Jets who put up eight goals on Carolina two days earlier. Washington won despite being outshot 34-17, thanks to the goals by Hagelin and Nicklas Backstrom and an empty-netter from Lars Eller to go along with 33 saves from Copley.

Despite not playing in two weeks, Copley made the most of a somewhat surprising decision to give him the nod over Braden Holtby.

“He was kicking the puck out all night,” Jets captain Blake Wheeler said. “The rebounds were there. We just couldn’t get to them.”

Mathieu Perreault scored Winnipeg’s only goal on a shot Copley had little chance of stopping. The Jets thought they’d tied the score midway through the third period, but officials ruled Bryan Little pushed Copley’s right pad into the net and upheld a coach’s challenge.

Connor Hellebuyck made 15 saves as the Central Division-leading Jets lost the finale of a four-game road trip.

“We played a heck of a road game here,” coach Paul Maurice said. “You don’t like losing when you play well. Their guy made some good saves, they got some good breaks around the net, but our compete was good. You know what? We had five opportunities to score on the power play. That doesn’t go. That hurts you.”

The Capitals’ penalty kill has hurt plenty of opponents during this winning streak and allowed them to look again like a championship contender.

“That’s something we’ve got to keep doing,” Backstrom said. “Things didn’t go our way like the first 50, 60 games, but I feel like everyone is more committed now and we’re blocking shots and we’re working for each other.”

NOTES: Capitals D John Carlson became the third player in franchise history with consecutive 50-assist seasons, joining Hall of Famers Scott Stevens and Larry Murphy. … The Jets continued to be without injured top-four defensemen Dustin Byfuglien and Josh Morrissey. … Alex Ovechkin remains one point away from 1,200 in his career.


Jets Agree on Deal to Acquire Raiders’ Osemele

In this Nov. 27, 2016, file photo, Oakland Raiders offensive guard Kelechi Osemele (70) lines up during the team’s NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers in Oakland, Calif. Two people with direct knowledge of the trade tell The Associated Press that the New York Jets have agreed to acquire left guard Kelechi Osemele from the Oakland Raiders. The people spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity Sunday, March 10, 2019 because the trade can’t be completed until the new league year starts Wednesday. 

Two people with direct knowledge of the trade tell The Associated Press that the New York Jets have agreed to acquire left guard Kelechi Osemele from the Oakland Raiders.

The New York Jets made a big move to get a big man to bolster their offensive line.

Two people with direct knowledge of the trade told The Associated Press that the Jets agreed Sunday to acquire two-time Pro Bowl left guard Kelechi Osemele from the Oakland Raiders.

The deal includes the Jets sending their fifth-round draft pick to the Raiders for Oakland’s sixth-rounder, according to one of the people who spoke to The AP on condition of anonymity because the trade can’t be completed until the new league year starts Wednesday.

ESPN first reported the trade for Osemele, with Bay Area News Group first reporting the terms.

The deal is the second by the Raiders in less than 24 hours. They agreed Saturday to acquire receiver Antonio Brown in a trade with Pittsburgh.

The 6-foot-5, 330-pound Osemele fills a major need on the Jets’ offensive line in front of quarterback Sam Darnold. Starting left guard James Carpenter is scheduled to become a free agent after an injury-shortened season. Carpenter spent the past four seasons with New York after playing in Seattle for four and helping the Seahawks win the Super Bowl in 2014.

But the Jets appeared ready to move on from Carpenter, who turns 30 later this month and is coming off a shoulder injury that limited him to 10 games last season.

New York, which entered the offseason with question marks on its offensive line at center and left guard, is re-signing Jonotthan Harrison, who started the final seven games at center when Spencer Long struggled with injuries and consistency. But it’s uncertain whether Harrison is in new coach Adam Gase’s plans as the starter moving forward. Long was released last month after just one season with the Jets and has since signed with Buffalo.

Meanwhile, the Raiders save $10.2 million on their salary cap by dealing Osemele, who turns 30 in June. He is also due $11.7 million next season, but none of the remaining salary includes guaranteed money.

Osemele was a second-round pick of Baltimore in 2012 and he started every game at right tackle as a rookie before moving to left guard to replace the injured Jah Reid in the postseason. He was limited to seven games the following year because of a back injury, but started 28 games over the next two seasons for the Ravens.

Gordon, Paul Helps Rockets Top Mavericks 94-93

Houston Rockets guard Eric Gordon (10) sprints to the basket past Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki, left rear, as Austin Rivers (25) and Devin Harris, right, watch in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Dallas, Sunday, March 10, 2019.

Gordon scores 26 points, Paul gets key block as Rockets beat Mavericks 94-93 for 8th straight win.

This time, James Harden was reduced to a supporting role for the Houston Rockets.

Eric Gordon and Chris Paul led the way.

Gordon scored 26 points and Paul blocked Jalen Brunson’s jumper in the final seconds, sending the streaking Rockets to a 94-93 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday.

Harden was saddled by foul trouble and finished with 20 points in Houston’s eighth straight win, 16 below his season average. The reigning NBA MVP led the Rockets in scoring in his previous 43 games for the league’s longest such streak since Michael Jordan’s 66-game run ended in 1988, according to STATS.

“We’ve had a lot of games where it was ugly and we lost earlier in the season,” Harden said. “But we’ll take the ugly win.”

In a matchup of teams going in opposite directions in the Western Conference, Dallas pushed its in-state rival to the end. After Harden missed a runner with 8.9 seconds to play, the Mavericks had a chance to win.

Coach Rick Carlisle opted to let it play out and rookie Luka Doncic rushed the ball up court. As three Rockets converged on him, Doncic found Brunson on the right wing, but Paul recovered to make a clean block on Brunson’s running 14-footer at the buzzer.

“I read (Doncic) and knew he was going to throw it to Jalen,” Paul said. “Jalen didn’t have enough time to do anything else but shoot it. If he pump-faked it, I’m in trouble. But then, he might not have had enough time to get the shot off.”

Brunson said he liked Carlisle’s decision to not use a timeout.

“It just shows that Coach trusts us, and obviously we want the ball in Luka’s hands,” Brunson said. “He made an unselfish play. I just have to knock it down.”

Gordon snapped a tie with a layup with 3:42 left, and P.J. Tucker’s 3-pointer put Houston up by five with 1:29 remaining. Dwight Powell’s dunk cut the lead to one with 31 seconds left.

Doncic had 19 points and a career-high 15 rebounds for Dallas, and Brunson finished with 18 points. The Mavericks lost for the 10th time in 11 games.

HARD ROAD FOR HARDEN

Harden picked up his fifth personal 20 seconds into the second half when Doncic took a charge. He re-entered with 3:03 left in the third and converted a three-point play and then a 3-pointer to put the Rockets up 79-70.

Harden had scored 30 or more points in 47 of his 61 games this season, including 37 of the last 38 entering Sunday.

“I can’t be aggressive on both ends of the floor,” Harden said of his foul trouble. “In the back of my mind, I’m conscious and keep thinking about it. But that’s what you got a team for.”

DONCIC DINGED

Doncic limped off the court for a timeout with 4:17 to play, but he stayed in the game. Carlisle said he either banged his knee or landed on it awkwardly.

“The hope is that it’s not serious,” Carlisle said. “We will know more tomorrow.”

Doncic wasn’t available after the game.

WATCHING DIRK

Dallas star Dirk Nowitzki scored six points. He needs 35 more to pass Wilt Chamberlain for sixth place on the NBA’s career scoring list.

Nowitzki did not play in the second half, something Carlisle called “a coach’s decision because the matchups were very difficult.”

TIP-INS

Rockets: Clint Capela had 17 points and 12 rebounds. … Coach Mike D’Antoni said Kenneth Faried would return to the lineup Monday after missing five games with a left hip contusion, and Nene would rest on the second half of the back-to-back.

Mavericks: Maxi Kleber returned after missing the last two games with left knee trouble. He had 10 points and a career-high 11 rebounds. He also was a primary defender on Harden, frustrating the guard into a 7-for-25 shooting performance.