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 Betreff des Beitrags: m like perk up on Paxto
BeitragVerfasst: 08.10.2018, 09:57 
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There’s a new regular-season champion in the Eastern Conference.

Serge Ibaka scored a season-high 25 points Sonny Jurgensen Jersey , DeMar DeRozan had 12 and the Toronto Raptors beat the Indiana Pacers 92-73 on Friday night, clinching the top seed in the East for the first time in team history.

”There’s gratification but you’re not satisfied,” Raptors coach Dwane Casey said. ”We haven’t got to our ultimate goal, but it’s a feeling of gratification.”

Jakob Poeltl scored 10 points as the Raptors set franchise records for wins in a season (57) and home wins (33).

”We’ve got home-court advantage throughout the (East) playoffs,” DeRozan said, ”so let’s use that to our advantage.”

The Raptors have lost to LeBron James and Cavaliers in each of the past two postseasons, including a Conference finals defeat two years ago and a second-round exit last spring.

Toronto is the seventh different team in as many years to finish first in the East, following Chicago, Miami, Indiana, Atlanta, Cleveland and Boston. Still, James’ team has represented the East in the NBA Finals in each of those years.

Kyle Lowry had nine points and nine assists, and Jonas Valanciunas added 12 rebounds for Toronto Chase Daniel Jersey , which never trailed in its ninth consecutive home victory over the Pacers. Toronto also locked up its fourth Atlantic Division title in the past five years.

”The journey is not over,” Lowry said.

The Pacers have not won north of the border since March 1, 2013.

Indiana came in after completing a season sweep of reigning NBA champion Golden State with a 126-106 home victory on Thursday night. However, the Pacers fell behind in a poor-shooting first quarter and never seriously challenged in this one.

”They pressured us, they pushed the tempo,” Pacers coach Nate McMIllan said. ”We just didn’t have any legs.”

Glenn Robinson III scored 12 points and Trevor Booker had 11 for the Pacers. Indiana shot 26 for 87 (29.9 percent) and set season-lows in points, made field goals, and field goal percentage.

”They’re a tough team,” Casey said. ”We caught them at a good time.”

After Bojan Bogdanovic made a jump shot with 8:28 left in the first, the Pacers missed 10 straight shots over the next five minutes before Domantas Sabonis snapped the slump with layup at 3:09. Indiana missed 18 of its first 21 shots attempts before ending the first with back-to-back 3-pointers.

Ibaka scored 10 points in the opening quarter and Toronto led 26-14 after one.

Booker made a pair of free throws as Indiana cut it to 32-28 with 5:04 left in the half but Toronto regained control with an 8-0 run. The Raptors led 45-33 at halftime.

Ibaka made all five shots he attempted in the third, including a pair of 3-pointers, to help Toronto take a 72-49 lead into the fourth.

TIP-INS

Pacers: Victor Oladipo extended his streak of consecutive games with a steal to 63, tying him with Gary Payton for the fifth-longest streak in NBA history. … The Pacers have lost 12 of their past 15 regular-season meetings with the Raptors. … Indiana is 20-20 on the road.

Raptors: Ibaka matched a career best with five made 3-pointers. … Toronto had 20 rebounds in the first quarter. … The Raptors won 56 games in 2015-16, when they had 32 home victories. … Toronto had 23 turnovers Geronimo Allison Jersey , a season worst. … The Raptors set a season-best for points allowed.

UPWARD TREND

Casey is the third coach in NBA history to improve his team’s win total in six of seven seasons. The others were Boston’s Red Auerbach (1955-56 to 1961-62) and Phoenix’s John MacLeod (1974-75 to 1980-81).

POWER SERGE

Toronto is 8-0 when Ibaka scores 20 or more.

DOUBLE TROUBLE

Indiana didn’t have a double-digit scorer until Booker made a free throw with 9:32 left in the fourth.

STRUGGLE FOR STARTERS

Indiana’s starting five combined for 18 points, shooting 8 for 36.

UP NEXT

Pacers: Visit Charlotte on Sunday. Indiana has lost four straight road games in the series.

Raptors: Host Orlando on Sunday. Toronto has won its past three meetings with the Magic.



More NBA basketball: The pageantry and patriotism accompanying the buildup to the Minnesota Twins' home opener forced a pause for James Paxton in his warmup routine, leaving the Seattle starting pitcher standing alone in left field while a giant flag was unfurled nearby.

The bald eagle brought in for a ceremonial flight over the field was the final piece of the pregame pomp, prior to the playing of the national anthem.

Well, the big bird didn't want to visit the mound, perhaps wary of Major League Baseball's new rule limiting such trips to keep the pace of play. Instead, it picked out another target at Target Field.

And Paxton wound up as the landing spot, sticking its talons into his back.

"I guess the eagle knew I was Canadian. I don't know. But it came for me," the left-hander said on Thursday evening after the Twins rallied past the Mariners 4-2 .

Even on a 38-degree afternoon against a big-swinging lineup, the toughest task for Paxton might have been keeping his composure during that startling moment before the game when the pastime of bird watching took on a whole new meaning.

"Figured I'm not going to outrun an eagle," Paxton said. "So might as well see what happens."

Rather than soaring to the mound to reach his summoning handlers, the bird took a path straight toward Paxton, causing him to jerk his upper body backward to avoid being grazed. Then the eagle, named Challenger Womens Saquon Barkley Jersey , landed in the grass before circling back to find a perch on Paxton's right shoulder . One of the trainers hustled out to lure the bird safely away and make sure Paxton was all right.

"I kind of ducked it so it wouldn't fly into my face. It was, I think, trying to stand on my back," Paxton said. "And then I thought, 'OK, if I can stand up slowly, maybe it'll just rest on my shoulder. But as I stood up, he kind of fell off my back a little bit and was kind of clawing to try to get back up on my shoulder. But then as I stood straight up, it fell back onto the ground."

So he simply resumed warming up.

"The talons, I don't think, punctured me. They were kind of sharp on my back. I don't have any scratches, I don't believe," Paxton said. "That's not the first time I've seen a bald eagle, but it was the first time I've had one try to land on me."

Talk about poise under pressure.

"I was just standing there Henry Anderson Jersey , trying not to panic," he said.

Both teams had a good time reliving the moment. Mariners manager Scott Servais said he thought fellow starting pitcher Felix Hernandez would have run away. Twins center fielder Byron Buxton had no trouble admitting that would have been his reaction, too.

"When I saw him like perk up on Paxton's arm, I'm gone," Buxton said. "He wouldn't have a chance to get on my shoulder."

Twins catcher Mitch Garver said the large-talon landing was "terrifying." Twins closer Fernando Rodney joked about using one of the imaginary arrows he shoots into the air after converting a save to try to bring down the bird.

"When I saw that, I said, 'Wow,'" Rodney said. "That's baseball. A lot of things happen."

Minnesota fans, meanwhile, could probably appreciate an eagle-free sporting event at this point. The Vikings lost to the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC championship game this winter, of course, before the Eagles came to Minneapolis two weeks later to win their first Super Bowl.

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