Reno B. - Bakersfield J. 127-98 The Reno Bighorns got their first win of the season Friday, beating the Bakersfield Jam in convincing fashion, 127-98, at the Reno Events Center. Bighorns guard Garrett Temple (6'6''-G-86, college: LSU) had a game-high 25 points, along with six assists and six rebounds. Temple led a balanced attack from the Bighorns (1-2), who had seven players score in double digits. Sacramento Kings assignee Tyler Honeycutt (6'8''-F-90, college: UCLA) had 18 points and 12 rebounds, and center Darnell Jackson recorded his second straight double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds. Tony Wroten (6'5''-G-93, college: Washington) scored 21 points off the bench. The Jam (4-2) was led by Toronto assignee Quincy Acy, who had 18 points and five rebounds. The Bighorns shot 52.4 percent from the field and outrebounded the Jam, 47-40. The teams face off twice more in the Bighorns' homestand - today at 7 p.m. and Monday at 7 p.m. Courtesy of: rgj.com
Los Angeles D. - Santa Cruz W. 92-93 The Springfield Armor, outscored the Fort Wayne Mad Ants 31-13 in the decisive third quarter to pick up a 108-100 victory tonight at the MassMutual Center. The Armor improve to 3-1, while the Mad Ants fall to 2-4 on the season. The Armor came out sluggish tonight and trailed by a game-high 18 points late in the first half before a late scoring burst cut the deficit to 60-49 by halftime. Fort Wayne knocked down 24-of-54 for 44% from the field and forced 10 turnovers to maintain the lead heading into intermission. Shawn Taggart (6'10''-F-85, college: Memphis) paced the Armor with 13 points in the opening half to help keep his team within striking distance. Springfield came out hot in the third quarter, opening the frame on a 10-2 run, capped by a Taggart hook shot with 7:01 to go to trim the lead to 62-59. The Armor finally took their first lead of the game, 72-71, on a put-back dunk by Willie Reed with 2:16 to go in the quarter. Reed's basket sparked another 10-2 run to give the Armor an 80-73 lead at the end of the third. Seven players scored in the quarter for Springfield, led by Ben Uzoh's seven points, and the Armor held the Mad Ants to 5-of-21 for 24% from the field. In the fourth quarter, Fort Wayne got within four, 99-95, with 1:57 to go, but a steal and dunk by Carleton Scott (6'8''-F-88, college: Notre Dame) pushed the lead to six and helped the Armor seal their second straight victory in Springfield. Scott recorded his first double-double of the season, scoring a team-high 22 points and grabbing 11 rebounds to go along with four steals. Uzoh added 18 points, 11 rebounds and six assists and Taggart contributed 15 points and 11 rebounds (eight offensive). James Mays overcame foul trouble to chip in 16 points, Reed tallied 12 points and seven rebounds and Cliff Tucker rounded out the double digit scorers with 11 points off the bench. The Armor matched their franchise-record for rebounds, 63, which they set in Sunday's victory over Los Angeles. Fort Wayne had five players score in double figures, led by Ron Howard (6'5''-G/F-82, college: Valparaiso)'s 22 points. Walker Russell, Jr. added 16 points and eight assists, former Boston Celtics' forward JaJuan Johnson (6'10''-F-89, college: Purdue) tallied 18 points and eight rebounds, Mike Anderson (6'7''-F-86, college: VCU) recorded a double-double with 15 points and 12 rebounds and Darryl Partin scored 10 points. The Armor return to action tomorrow night when they host the Canton Charge at 8:00 pm at the MassMutual Center. The Mad Ants head north to Maine to take on the Red Claws tomorrow at 7:00 pm at the Portland Expo. Courtesy of: Los Angeles D-Fenders
Idaho S. - Austin T. 91-113 Justin Dentmon (6'0''-G-85, college: Washington) had a game-high 28 points, making 6-of-11 threes, for the Austin Toros in their 113-91 road win over the Idaho Stampede. Tyler Wilkerson (6'8''-F-88, college: Marshall) had 23 points and 10 rebounds for the 3-2 Toros. Aubrey Coleman (6'4''-G-87, agency: Two Points, college: Houston) had 17 points and eight rebounds, while Patrick Sullivan had seven points, four rebounds and six blocked shots. Will Barton (6'6''-G-91, college: Memphis), an assigned player from the Portland Trail Blazers, scored 18 points and added eight rebounds for winless Idaho, three blocks and three assists for the Stampede. Victor Claver, also assigned with Barton from Portland, added eight points and six rebounds in the loss for Idaho (0-5). The Stampede only led once, taking a one-point advantage with 3 minutes left in the first quarter. The Toros shut the door for the rest of the game, leading by as many as 29 points. The Toros will face Idaho again tonight at 8 p.m. at CenturyLink Arena in Boise. Courtesy of: statesman.com
Iowa E. - Texas L. 74-111 The Iowa Energy treated 3,679 fans to history Friday at Wells Fargo Arena. They came out flat, were thoroughly outplayed in every phase of the game, and ended up with the worst home loss in the six-year history of the franchise, 111-74 at the hands of the Texas Legends. 'When you play like crap, it doesn't matter what you do. There was no scheme or anything else that was going to save us,' Energy center Ben Strong (6'11''-C-86, agency: Interperformances, college: Guilford) said. 'It looked horrible.' The Energy (1-3) couldn't shoot, making 27 of 73 attempts (37 percent), were outrebounded 56-36 and had 17 turnovers against 11 assists. They trailed 53-35 at halftime, and whatever was said at intermission actually made things worse. The Legends (4-2) quickly built a 30-point lead and kept it there throughout the second half, building it as high as 44 points before growing bored and leaving with a 37-point margin. It was so hard to watch that fans in the front row behind the scoring table spent much of the game bantering with Legends coach Eduardo Najera and guard Frederick House (6'5''-F-78, college: S.Utah). 'They hit some tough shots here and there but that doesn't account for 37 points,' said Strong, who led Iowa with 12 points and seven rebounds. 'They weren't even talking crap, they were just talking among themselves. I heard them saying, We've got to go for 40.' That's disrespectful. And we didn't man up and do anything about it. They just took it to us, and we took it.' The worst loss in franchise history was a 125-87 drubbing at Tulsa on April 2, 2010. It couldn't have been any more one-sided than Friday's showing, though. The Energy were outscored by 16 points in the first and third quarters. Coach Kevin Young hinted that some roster changes may be looming if his team doesn't turn things around. The Energy host Erie at 4 p.m. Sunday. 'I'm not trying to threaten the guys, but at the same time this team pays me to win games,' Young said. 'And if we feel the guys that we have on the floor can't do that for us, then we might have to look at doing some things. 'It was men vs. boys really tonight.' Young said he was eager to show his players the game tape today so that they can get a long look at their numerous flaws. 'This league, you don't have time to sit around and sulk,' he said. 'Figure it out quick; that's how this league works. And we'll see what we're made of.' Courtesy of: desmoinesregister.com
Sioux Falls S. - Erie Bay H. 103-89 The Sioux Falls Skyforce defeated the Erie BayHawks 103-89 Friday night to extend their season-opening win streak to five games. Sioux Falls trailed 76-71 heading into the fourth quarter but outscored Erie 32-13 in the final stanza to remain undefeated. Erie (2-3) did not trail in the first half and led 49-42 at halftime behind 16 points from D.J. Kennedy (6'6''-G/F-89, agency: Interperformances, college: St.John's). Troy Hudson (6'1''-PG-76, agency: Veracity Sports, LLC, college: S.Illinois) made a 3-pointer early in the second half to give Sioux Falls a brief 56-54 lead. Erie pushed the lead back to 11 points (74-63) before settling for a five-point lead (76-71) after three quarters. Sioux Falls (5-0) outshot Erie 65.0 percent (13-of-20) to 28.6 percent (6-of-21) in the fourth quarter to pick up the victory. Hudson scored a team-high 27 points behind 12-of-16 field goals (3-of-4 3-pointers). Demetris Nichols added 25 points and eight rebounds. Kennedy scored a game-high 28 points to go along with eight rebounds. Henry Sims posted 18 points while Mychel Thompson added 11 points behind 3-of-8 3-pointers. Sioux Falls hosts Texas tomorrow night at 7 p.m. CT. Erie visits Iowa Sunday at 5 p.m. ET. Courtesy of: Skyforce
Springfield A. - Ft.Wayne MA 108-100 It may seem hard to imagine that defense was the key in a game that saw more than 200 points scored, but that was the case for the Springfield Armor Friday night at the MassMutual Center. After giving up 60 first-half points to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, the Armor held them to just 13 in the third quarter to take the lead, then held off a late charge for a 108-100 victory. It was the second straight win for the Armor (3-1) and the second straight loss for the Mad Ants (2-4), who are 0-2 on the road. "You have to weather the storm. That's what I was always taught," Armor forward Carleton Scott said. "You're going to come out and take some punches and you got to come back with a counterpunch. Cardiac Kids, that's us.'' It was another record-setting night of board work for the Armor, who tied the franchise mark they set last game against Los Angeles with 63 rebounds. Nineteen of them came in the third quarter when Springfield held Fort Wayne to 5-of-21 shooting and gave up just two offensive rebounds. "We came out sluggish again, and not to make excuses, but the schedule when you play two games and are off a week and play two games, we can't get in a rhythm right now," Armor coach Bob MacKinnon said. "I thought we found our rhythm in that third quarter pretty good.'' About the only good part about the first half for the Armor was the end of it. The Mad Ants led by as many as 18 points as they outran, outrebounded and outhustled the Armor to a 60-49 lead at the break. The long-armed Mad Ants were the aggressors, building their lead by holding the Armor to one shot and getting out on the break quickly. They scored 38 of their 60 first-half points in the paint, undeterred by Springfield's reputation as a shot-blocking giant. JaJuan Johnson (18 points), Mike Anderson (15) and Ron Howard (22) were the Fort Wayne players really forcing the issue. The Mad Ants helped themselves on the defensive end, getting James Mays and Chas McFarland in foul trouble with three personals each, several coming on offense. With all that and the Armor shooting below 38 percent with 10 turnovers, an 11-point deficit could be considered a good thing. They closed the half on an 8-1 run to bring Fort Wayne within striking distance of what turned out to be a magnificent third quarter for the home team. "They came out in transition, they came out early in the game running and that's how we wanted to play," Scott said. "In order to play like that, we had to slow them down and get back on defense and get stops. And not just stopping them one time, but getting the rebound and running." A couple of players who have been struggling with their shot helped ignite the third-quarter run. Scott, who had been shooting under 33 percent, and Christian Polk (6'3''-G-87, agency: Interperformances, college: UTEP) hit big hoops in the quarter. Scott had his best game for the Armor with 22 points and 11 rebounds. A 10-1 run to open the third got the Armor within three, and they kept knocking until a McFarland steal led to a Willie Reed dunk and the Armor's first lead at 72-71 with 2:16 left in the quarter. Springfield closed the third with an 8-0 run, including a 3-pointer by Scott. Springfield built a 15-point lead in the fourth, then held on as the Mad Ants made a late charge using fullcourt pressure. It was another strong game by the Armor bench, Shawn Taggart scoring 15 with 10 boards as the reserves scored 40 points to just 21 by the Mad Ants. Courtesy of: masslive.com
DeJuan Blair (ex Jiangsu TX) agreed terms with Texas Legends - 1 day ago
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Texas Legends inked 28-year old power forward DeJuan Blair (201-120kg-89, college: Pittsburgh). He started the season at Jiangsu Tongxi in Chinese CBA league. In 10 games he recorded very impressive stats: 24.1ppg, 13.6rpg, 1.4apg and 2.0spg this season. Blair ended the last season at the Suns. But the most of that year he spent at the Wizards where in 28 NBA games he averaged just 2.2ppg and 2.0rpg. In 2009 Blair was drafted by San Antonio Spurs (NBA) in second round (37th overall). The... [read more]
Texas Legends inked 28-year old power forward DeJuan Blair (201-120kg-89, college: Pittsburgh). He started the season at Jiangsu Tongxi in Chinese CBA league. In 10 games he recorded very impressive stats: 24.1ppg, 13.6rpg, 1.4apg and 2.0spg this season. Blair ended the last season at the Suns. But the most of that year he spent at the Wizards where in 28 NBA games he averaged just 2.2ppg and 2.0rpg. In 2009 Blair was drafted by San Antonio Spurs (NBA) in second round (37th overall). The former University of Pittsburgh staris in his eighth season in pro basketball. Blair was selected to NBA All-Star Game All-Sophmore Team back in 2011. He has played previously professionally in Russia (Krasnie Krilya) and other NBA team (Dallas Mavericks). Blair's game is described as:
(by Aran Smith for NBADraft.net in 2009)
Powerful post player with tremendous rebounding ability … Uses his wide base, long arms and soft hands to inhale every rebound in his area … Has a true NBA skill, rebounding.
Doesn't have great explosiveness either which makes creating shots against bigger and more athletic players a challenge … … At times showed his inexperience late in the year making careless mental errors in key moments.
Fort Wayne Mad Ants welcome back Bentil - 1 day ago
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Fort Wayne Mad Ants tabbed 22-year old naturalized Ghanian forward Ben Bentil (206-104kg-95, college: Providence). It is actually his comeback to Fort Wayne Mad Ants as he has played here before. Bentil played recently at Xinjiang Flying Tigers in Chinese CBA league. In 11 games he averaged 13.7ppg, 4.8rpg and 1.0spg this season. Bentil also played earlier that season for another team Fort Wayne Mad Ants where in only one CBA game he had very impressive stats: 27 points, 10 rebounds, 1 st... [read more]
Fort Wayne Mad Ants tabbed 22-year old naturalized Ghanian forward Ben Bentil (206-104kg-95, college: Providence). It is actually his comeback to Fort Wayne Mad Ants as he has played here before. Bentil played recently at Xinjiang Flying Tigers in Chinese CBA league. In 11 games he averaged 13.7ppg, 4.8rpg and 1.0spg this season. Bentil also played earlier that season for another team Fort Wayne Mad Ants where in only one CBA game he had very impressive stats: 27 points, 10 rebounds, 1 steal and 2 blocks. Last year Bentil was drafted by Boston Celtics (NBA) in second round (51st overall). The former Providence College staris in his first season in pro basketball. Among other achievements Bentil's team made it to the Big East Tournament Semifinals for two years in a row (2015 and 2016). He received also All-Big East Most Improved Player of the Year award and NABC All-District 5 1st Team award in 2016 at his college time. Bentil has played also professionally in NBA (Indiana Pacers).
Marcus Simmons (ex Phoenix) signs at Drive - 1 day ago
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Grand Rapids Drive landed 29-year old forward Marcus Simmons (198-98kg-88, college: USC, agency: Interperformances). He played in the summer at Phoenix in Filipino PBA league. In three games he averaged impressive 18.7ppg, 11.0rpg, 4.0apg and 1.0spg. Simmons ended the last season at the Bulls. But the most of that year he spent at another team Fort Wayne Mad Ants where in 49 games he had 6.6ppg, 4.2rpg and 1.6apg. In 2012 (a year after he left the college) Simmons was drafted by Frisco Te... [read more]
Grand Rapids Drive landed 29-year old forward Marcus Simmons (198-98kg-88, college: USC, agency: Interperformances). He played in the summer at Phoenix in Filipino PBA league. In three games he averaged impressive 18.7ppg, 11.0rpg, 4.0apg and 1.0spg. Simmons ended the last season at the Bulls. But the most of that year he spent at another team Fort Wayne Mad Ants where in 49 games he had 6.6ppg, 4.2rpg and 1.6apg. In 2012 (a year after he left the college) Simmons was drafted by Frisco Texas Legends (D-League) in sixth round (88th overall). The former University of Southern California standoutis in his sixth season in pro basketball. Among other achievements Simmons played in the final of D-League in 2015. He received also All-Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year award back in 2011 at his college time. Simmons has played previously professionally in Japan (Yokohama B-Corsairs) and D-League (Canton Charge).
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