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  •  » CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Charlotte Bobcats have relied heavily on Al Jef

#1 2016-10-05 09:11:03

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Charlotte Bobcats have relied heavily on Al Jef

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Charlotte Bobcats have relied heavily on Al Jefferson to put them in the thick of the Eastern Conference playoff race. On Saturday night, they proved they could win without their veteran centre having a big night. "It shows that we have other guys that can step up," point guard Kemba Walker said. With Jefferson double-teamed most of the night, Walker elevated his game, pouring in 31 points to help the Bobcats defeat the Memphis Grizzlies 92-89 for their fourth win in five nights. Charlotte is 4-0 since the All-Star break, marking its longest winning streak since March 2011. The Bobcats won despite Jefferson being held to just six points -- tying a season-low -- on 2-of-13 shooting. Jefferson came in having scored 29 or more points in eight of his last 11 games and at least 20 points in 17 of the last 19. The Bobcats used an 18-3 run in the fourth quarter to break open a tight game and then held on down the stretch with Walker making four free throws in the final 25 seconds to snap Memphis four-game win streak. It was the second straight night Walker hit four free throws in the final 30 seconds to seal a victory. "I shoot so many free throws in practice Im just thinking, "Hey, make them," said Walker, who was 10 of 10 from the foul line. Charlotte had lost the second night of a back-to-back eight straight times before winning two this week. "To win four in a row against good teams and to play this well in a game like that that was hard fought, you have to feel good about it," Bobcats coach Steve Clifford said. But now the Bobcats face a four-game stretch against the NBAs four best teams -- San Antonio, Oklahoma City, Miami and Indiana -- with the first three games on the road. The Grizzlies were led by Mike Conley, who had 16 points, but twice missed 3-point attempts when he had a chance to tie the game on Memphis final possession. Marc Gasol had 15 points, and Zac Randolph had 12 points and 11 rebounds for Memphis, which fell two games behind Dallas in the race for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. The Bobcats trailed 66-64 early in the fourth quarter when Anthony Tolliver got hot from the outside, igniting an 18-3 run with three 3-pointers to give Charlotte a 13-point lead. Tolliver finished with nine points. The Grizzlies battled back to take the lead when Conley knocked down an 18-footer with 51 seconds left. But Josh McRoberts sank two free throws to put the Bobcats ahead for good with 38 seconds left. Conley missed a jumper on the other end and then fouled Walker as he was heading up the court. Walker made two free throws to push the lead to three with 24 seconds left. Gasol answered with an inside layup, but Walker hit two more free throws with 10.7 seconds left to push the lead back to three. Conley had two open looks in the final 6 seconds, but couldnt connect. "We wanted to win, but the Charlotte Bobcats were the aggressors," Memphis guard Tony Allen said. "They were physical. Coach told us before the game that their talent doesnt jump out at you, but what does is just how hard they play. Theres no excuse because they were the aggressors and they pretty much outworked us tonight." The Grizzlies game plan was to make sure Jefferson didnt beat them, aggressively double-teaming the 6-foot-10, 289-pound centre every time he touched the ball in the low post. They limited Jefferson to four points on 1-of-6 shooting in the first half and held Charlotte to 39 per cent shooting to build a 48-42 halftime lead. "Hes shooting it up and theyre going to him a lot," Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger said. "We just kept staying in front of him and making his shots tough." Jefferson picked up his third foul with 2:52 left in the first half -- a call that didnt sit well with Bobcats coach Steve Clifford, who was slapped with a technical foul for arguing. It was his seventh technical foul of the season. NOTES: Atlanta Falcons running back Steven Jackson and former Carolina Panthers wide receiver Muhsin Muhammad were at the game. ... Memphis had won 16 of its last 20 games coming into Saturday night and three straight against the Bobcats. ... Memphis is 6-5 this season on the second night of a back-to-back. http://www.francenationalshop.com/Mouss … ce-Jersey/ . It might not have mattered. While the Dodgers are preparing for the playoffs, the Padres showed their future has promise behind two rookies. http://www.francenationalshop.com/Eliaq … ce-Jersey/ . But when it comes to determining if Raymond will find a place on the Leafs roster when training camp concludes in a week, well, that decision will ultimately fall to the head coach. http://www.francenationalshop.com/Mathi … ce-Jersey/ . Haas said he "felt a lot of pain" in his right shoulder when he slammed his racket to the ground in frustration after losing his serve at 3-3 in the first set. http://www.francenationalshop.com/Blank-France-Jersey/ . Traditional contenders Brazil, Greece and Turkey drew the other three spots to complete the 24-team field for this summers tournament in Spain, basketball governing body FIBA announced Saturday at its meeting in Barcelona. http://www.francenationalshop.com/Steph … ce-Jersey/ . The veteran safety was a starter for the Bengals from 2008-2012. He totaled 41 tackles and three interceptions while starting all but four of the 13 games he played last season.MELBOURNE, Australia -- Even in a Grand Slam as unpredictable as this years Australian Open, the names in the womens semifinals may still prompt head-scratching among casual followers of tennis. With the three biggest stars of the womens game falling one by one -- top-seeded Serena Williams, followed by Maria Sharapova and two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka -- the door has opened for a first-time winner at Melbourne Park. Only fourth-seeded Li Na has won a Grand Slam before -- the 2011 French Open. Fifth-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland was the 2012 Wimbledon finalist, but had never been beyond the quarters in Melbourne until she chipped, lobbed and sliced Azarenka off the court in a remarkable display of shot-making on Wednesday. Dominika Cibulkova, a diminutive Slovakian who dispatched Sharapova in the fourth round, has made just one Grand Slam semifinal before, while 19-year-old Eugenie Bouchard is a only playing her fourth major -- she didnt even make it out of qualifying at last years Australian Open. With such a golden opportunity for one of the four to now break through and capture a major, the deciding factor in the semifinals may be who can best handle the pressure. "Of course, a couple seeded (players) are out. Doesnt mean its going to be easier and you have a title right away," Radwanska said. "Its a bit more pressure. This is the semifinal of a Grand Slam." Radwanska should know. The draw opened up similarly at Wimbledon last year when Williams and Sharapova were upset early and Azarenka pulled out with an injury, leaving the Polish player as the highest remaining seed and the favourite to capture her first major. Radwanska, however, crumpled in the semifinals against Sabine Lisicki, blowing a 3-0 lead in the third set. She said its natural to feel nervous in these situations. "I think in the beginning of the match its always a little bit tough, especially its the first semifinal," she said.dddddddddddd "But hopefully after few games Im going to be myself and play my best tennis." Radwanska faces Cibulkova in the semis -- a player shes beaten four times in five matches, including a 6-0, 6-0 drubbing in the Sydney International final last year. Cibulkova knows she doesnt have a great record against Radwanska, but she takes inspiration from Stanislas Wawrinkas upset of four-time mens champion Novak Djokovic in the quarterfinals after 14 consecutive losses to the Serb. "You just want to prove it to yourself that you can do it, and thats what (Wawrinka) did," Cibulkova said. Li, a two-time finalist at the Australian Open, has the most experience of any of the semifinalists playing in the latter stages of slams, but shes also been susceptible to buckling under pressure. Li was up a set in the finals here against Kim Clijsters in 2011 and Azarenka in 2013, only to falter both times. She also nervously wasted four match points in a fourth-round loss to Clijsters in 2012, breaking down in tears afterward. The Chinese star was almost out of this years tournament, as well, saving a match point against Lucie Safarova in the third round. Since then, however, shes appeared more focused on court, dropping just six games in her last two matches. The wild card is Bouchard. Li, who will be 32 next month, is 12 years older than the Canadian and has won their only previous meeting, but Bouchard is a rising talent with nothing to lose. She likes her chances in a tournament as topsy-turvy as this one. "I think some players can still lose on any given day and it still makes it extremely interesting," she said. "Im feeling confident and just excited to play." Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys Cheap Soccer Jerseys China ' ' '

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2016-10-05 09:11:03

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