After a 29-save performance in the Bruins’ win over the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday afternoon, Tuukka Rask was scheduled to enjoy a day of rest Sunday when Boston visited Detroit for the second leg of a back-to-back. It turned out there would be no off day for Rask, however. Jaroslav Halak was a late scratch…Bruins Notes: Why Jaroslav Halak Was Late Scratch In Loss To Red Wings — NESN.com
The election of outfielder Larry Walker to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2020 qualifies him as the top Canadian to play for the Cardinals. Here’s a look at the five best Canadian Cardinals: LARRY WALKER Acquired from the Rockies on Aug. 6, 2004, Walker, 37, hit .280 in 44 games for the 2004 Cardinals. With […]…Top 5 Canadian Cardinals of all-time — RetroSimba
What’s happening right now in Toronto is pretty remarkable. Has there ever been a Toronto team in any sport like these Raptors? Smart, talented, incredibly deep, entertaining and grounded with tons of personality? And, oh, yeah, all they do is win, win, win no matter what. Last year’s ride was a blast to cover. This…Woz Blog: Fans should really enjoy this relentless Raptors team — Toronto Sun
It’s probably safe to say Enes Kanter no longer is in Kevin Durant’s corner, if he ever was at all. In case you missed it, Durant harshly criticized his former Thunder teammates during a recent appearance on “All The Smoke,” a podcast co-hosted by ex-NBA players Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson. Durant, who played with…Enes Kanter Has Perfect Reaction To Kevin Durant’s Anti-Thunder Comments — NESN.com
Los Angeles Clippers Kawhi Leonard (2) drives the ball around Minnesota Timberwolves’ Jarrett Culver in the second half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Stacy Bengs) Los Angeles Clippers Paul George (13) tries to shoot against Minnesota Timberwolves’ Naz Reid in the second half of an NBA basketball game…Kawhi Leonard, Clippers fall to new-look Timberwolves — Press Telegram
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2020
Rochester: No goals
Goaltender: A. Hammond (21/23)
Toronto: M. Marchment (9) (N. Petan, T. Kivihalme), M. Marchment (10) PP (K. Agostino, J. Duszak), M. Read (6) EN (G. Wilson), J. Duszak (2) EN (T. Gaudet, K. Gravel)
Goaltender: J. Woll (38/38)
ON THE SCORESHEET
- Mason Marchment opened the scoring at 52 seconds in the first period and on the power play at 19:21 of the second period. He has five goals through his last two games and is the first Marlie to score five consecutive goals. Marchment has 14 points (10 goals, 4 assists) through 21 games.
- Matt Read scored on the empty net at 16:02 of the third period. Read has 14 points (6 goals, 8 assists) in 34 games this season.
- Joseph Duszak scored on the empty net at 19:06 of the third period and earlierhad the secondary assist on Marchment’s second period goal. Duszak has six points (2 goals, 4 assists) through 10 games with the Marlies and has points (1-4-5) in three consecutive games.
- Nic Petan recorded the primary assist on Marchment’s first period goal. He has four assists through two games. Petan has 30 points (10 goals, 20 assists) in 22 games with the Marlies.
- Teemu Kivihalme registered the secondary assist on Marchment’s first period goal. Kivihalme has 13 points (3 goals, 10 assists) through 42 games this season.
- Kenny Agostino picked up the primary assist on Marchment’s second period goal. He was selected as third star. Agostino has 35 points (21 goals, 14 assists) in 39 games this season.
- Garrett Wilson had the lone assist on Read’s third period goal. Wilson has 14 points (8 goals, 6 assists) in 40 games.
- Tyler Gaudet recorded the primary assist on Duszak’s third period goal.
- Kevin Gravel registered the secondary assist on Duszak’s third period goal. This is Gravel’s first point with the Marlies and his first game since November 9 due to illness.
- Joseph Woll stopped all 38 shots he faced for his second shutout of the season. Woll is now 8-11-2-1 on the season with a .890 save percentage and a 3.53 goals against average. Woll was selected as first star of the game.
- Kenny Agostino was awarded a penalty shot at 12:24 of the second period which was stopped by Rochester. Toronto was awarded a penalty shot in consecutive games (Baptiste, Feb. 7 at Belleville).
- Toronto was 3-for-3 on the penalty kill and 1-for-4 on the power play.
- Rochester had a 38-25 edge in shots in all situations. Mason Marchment led the Marlies with seven shots on goal for the second consecutive game.
- The Marlies are 11-11-2-1 against North Division opponents and 3-1-0-0 against the Rochester Americans.
REGULAR SEASON LEADERS
- Goals: K. Agostino (21)
- Assists: J. Bracco (30)
- Points: P. Aberg (36)
- PPG: N. Petan (6)
- Shots: P. Aberg (120)
- +/-: B. Harpur (+10)
- PIMS: G. Wilson (69)
HOME SWEET HOME
- Toronto’s home record is 15-8-0-0 (30 points) this season. Toronto’s longest home point streak reached 18 points from Oct. 5 to Nov. 24 (9-0-0-0).
- The Marlies have outscored their opponents 80-60. Kenny Agostino leads the Marlies in goals (14) and Jeremy Bracco in assists (18) at home.
- Goaltenders Kasimir Kaskisuo (7-3-0-0) and Joseph Woll (5-5-0-0) have combined to make 535 saves. Michael Hutchinson also started three games (3-0-0-0) at Coca-Cola Coliseum.
- Toronto is 17-5-2-2 when scoring first.
- The Marlies are 10-2-2-2 when leading after the first period and 15-1-1-0 when leading after the second period.
- Toronto is 16-10-1-2 when outshot by their opponent.
- The Marlies are 9-5-2-2 in Saturday games and are 1-3-0-0 in February.
CURRENT POINT STREAKS
- Joseph Duszak has points (1-4-5) in three consecutive games.
- Mason Marchment has goals (5) in consecutive games.
- Nic Petan has assists (4) in consecutive games.
- Rich Clune (high ankle sprain) did not dress for tonight’s game against Rochester. He left Toronto’s game against Charlotte on January 19 and did not return.
- Kalle Kossila (migraines) did not dress for tonight’s game against Rochester.
- Jesper Lindgren (high ankle sprain)did not dress for tonight’s game against Rochester. Heleft Toronto’s game against Cleveland on January 24 in the third period and did not return.
- February 7: Reassigned defenceman Joseph Duszak by Toronto (NHL) from Newfoundland (ECHL).
- February 7: Recalled defenceman Timothy Liljegren from loan by Toronto (NHL).
- February 5: Returned goaltender Kasimir Kaskisuo on loan from Toronto (NHL).
- February 4: Recalled goaltender Parker Gahagen from loan to Newfoundland (ECHL).
- February 4: Recalled goaltender Kasimir Kaskisuo from loan by Toronto (NHL).
- February 3: Recalled forward Giorgio Estephan from loan to Newfoundland (ECHL).
HEAD COACH GREG MOORE
On today’s start with Marchment scoring 52 seconds into the game:
Yeah, that’s something that we had struggled with in the stretch here. You could tell the energy in the locker room. The guys were excited to play tonight, they can feel the momentum they’re starting to gain in games. Even though the results haven’t been there, they’re very proud of the work they’ve put in. The start was great. It was a good opportunity for us to come out and gain some momentum.
On what he likes about Nic Petan’s line with Kenny Agostino and Mason Marchment:
Just their compete level. They seemed to build some chemistry. Marchment builds a lot of time and space for guys. He gets under the skin of the opponent and that opens up time and space for Kenny and Petey to make plays and I think there’s a good combination of skill there.
On the shutout helping Joseph Woll’s confidence going forward:
Huge. He came up big tonight. You could just tell his body language was really calm, he was assertive, he was tracking the puck really well. It was a solid game for him.
On Adam Brooks not dressing and Nic Petan leaving the game:
We’ll see. No real status or timeline on either of them. Nothing major but we definitely miss those guys if they’re not in our lineup, they’re big players. But we’ll see in the future.
On Kevin Gravel’s play today (first game since Nov. 9):
I was really surprised. That was my first opportunity to even watch him play in a game. It’s been a long road, we’re really proud of the work he’s put in. He’s a great person. For the team to get a win, for him to play the way he did, to get the minutes he did, is a really fun story to see and we’re really proud of him.
KEVIN GRAVEL (1 ASSIST)
On his first game since Nov. 9:
It was good. It was good to get back out there. It was another game of the year for a lot of guys but for me, it kind of meant a little more. Kind of in an unknown position there for a while in terms of health so you don’t really know what’s going to happen. It felt good to be out there and then to contribute to the team and be back on the ice to play a game again.
On not playing through a difficult stretch of games for the Marlies:
Yeah it’s hard to watch. Obviously you want to be there for the guys and you want to be able to work through that with them and help the guys out. You’re close as a team and you go through the good times together and you go through the bad times together. You can ask anyone, they don’t like watching, whether it’s one game or three months. It’s always tough to be on the sidelines. It was good to get back, it was good to be on the ice again.
On Joseph Woll’s performance:
It was really good, really good. Especially the first period there, they had close to I think 20 shots on goal in the first. Kind of bought us a little bit of time there and let us get a chance to get our feet underneath us. We got the lead there and he made a couple of ten-bell saves for us on the PP and the PK as well. He was great for us. It’s good to be able to shut the door for him and get him that shutout and have his back there too.
JOSEPH WOLL (SECOND CAREER SHUTOUT, 38 SAVES)
On the significance of today’s shutout:
I think it was big for me but I think it was really huge for the team. I think we’ve been on a little bit of a downward spiral lately so I think a big win like that against a good team is something we can really build on.
On how he has stayed focused through difficult games:
I think the biggest thing is keeping with your routine. I think it’s easy to start changing a lot of things when you’re going through some adversity but for me and for the team it’s just been come in every day and keep getting better and sticking with it.
On Mason Marchment:
He’s been awesome. He’s one of those players that you love to have on your team and probably hate to play against so he can do it all really. He’s scoring a lot of big goals for us, he’s creating some havoc around the net. I love to see it.
February 9 vs Laval – 4:00 p.m. ET
February 14 at Belleville – 7:00 p.m. ET
February 15 vs Belleville – 4:00 p.m. ET
February 17 vs Binghamton – 3:00 p.m. ET (Scotiabank Arena)
February 19 vs Binghamton – 11:00 a.m. ET
(23-28) BROOKLYN NETS, 118 VS. (39-14) TORONTO RAPTORS, 119 SCOTIABANK ARENA SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2020
TORONTO RAPTORS QUOTES
NICK NURSE (HEAD COACH)
On running out of gas towards the end of the game … You’re right – we were, we didn’t make a three, I don’t think, forever, it seemed like there in the fourth. We had a couple of point-blank front- of- the-rimmers and we all knew it. We talked about it in a couple of the timeouts, man, we gotta gather everything we’ve got when we get it inside and try to finish, but we couldn’t quite do it. Big stop at the end, good job of pressing up and getting him disjointed down there.
On playing Matt Thomas for 15 straight minutes and continuously getting big performances from guys that never play … Our assistant coaches do a great job of keeping those guys ready. I think the mindset of you never know and stay ready maybe helps a little bit once in a while. When you don’t hit the scouting report because you haven’t played for a while too, so that is the other thing. He played great, man he came in there and like always every time he raises up you think it’s going in and he banged a bunch of them in. That was a big lift. That group was awesome, first half. They were incredible, they turned a lacklustre start to the game into an energetic game and they were great.
On starting Terence Davis … I just wanted the spacing, and he has been shooting the ball really well and I just wanted the spacing out there along with kind of considering Pat (McCaw) our backup point guard. I wanted him to be able to come in and sub for either him or Fred (VanVleet) and go from there.
On leaving the bench in the game with Brooklyn brought their starters back … I thought they were playing with great defensive energy, getting out on the open floor and they guarded great for about six straight minutes. They did their job, got it the down to about five and a half or something and we started filtering the guys. It was just based on their energy really, they had it going defensively and that was creating some offence for them.
FRED VANVLEET (29 points, six assists, two rebounds)
On tonight’s final minutes… Obviously it’s not a textbook way to close out a game, but when you have a long winning streak like that there will be different types of ways to finish it. We had a good idea they were probably going to give the ball to Caris (LeVert) in some sort of fashion and try to switch everything. I thought we did a good job of stopping their initial play that they were trying to give to Joe Harris for a pin down or something like that and then OG (Anunoby) was just great (with) one-on-one defence. We did give up an offensive rebound, he had a good look in the end, but it bounced out, so sometimes it’s good to be lucky too.
On the bench play… Those guys can play. I feel like we’ve had this conversation five to 10 times this year. It’s a good thing. Every time they step up and they play well people are surprised because they’re at the end of the bench, but you just have to wait for your turn (and) wait for (the) opportunity. Somebody like Matt (Thomas), who doesn’t’ really play on a consistent basis, stepped up there with a big first half, some key buckets. Obviously Terence (Davis) started tonight, but same thing with him. Those guys have been good for us all year; Rondae (Hollis-Jefferson), Chris (Boucher), and to do it on consistent nights … it’s special and that’s what we need out of those guys.
MATT THOMAS (15 points, six rebounds)
How much easier is it to get in a rhythm when you’re out there for an extended period of time? (For) any athlete when you get in the zone and you get in that rhythm, obviously it’s a lot easier. The game comes a lot naturally and you just play a lot more confident.
What is it about this team that makes everyone pretty comfortable with playing with different guys? I think it’s just a testament to how hard everyone works on the team. Everyone stays ready. We have a very deep and talented team and everyone is more than capable of coming in and making plays. Also, just shows the chemistry we have on this team. We’re all so good at playing off each other and everyone plays unselfishly and plays the right way.
BROOKLYN NETS QUOTES
KENNY ATKINSON (HEAD COACH)
In a game like that what stands out: the comeback or the deficit? Missed opportunities. On the road, I think 34, 33, 34 points is a lot to give up. It’s a lot to make up. The fourth quarter was fantastic. We held them to 19 points defensively. We obviously started to make some shots. That’s what got us back in it. I don’t think you can dig yourself a 20-point hole against a really good team like this.
How about DeAndre Jordan’s fourth quarter? He was our defensive anchor. I felt like we weren’t getting that resistance and he anchored our defence. He did a good job on (Serge) Ibaka, was patrolling the paint, he got us back in the game with his defence.
On the last possession… We wanted to go quicker. I think guys got into a little bit. You want to go as quick as possible. We wanted to get a good shot at the end of the day.
Did you want to them to get to the rim if possible? There were a couple of options on the play. They took away the first option. Joe was the second option coming off to stagger if we didn’t get him, and Caris went one-on-one
What do you think of the Raptors run? Incredible depth. Gasol is out, this guy is out, this guy is out. That’s a true sign of not only a good basketball team but a good program when you can have the injuries they’ve sustained and go deep into your roster. You’re going 11th man, 12th man. McCaw plays well. Boucher was really good tonight. They have young guys that are deep in their roster that have helped them win the game. That’s how you go on a long streak in this league. You can’t just do it with your top five or your top six, you’ve got to be deep. They are deep. They are playing great basketball.
On Caris LeVert’s progress… I said it when he wasn’t playing well, he’s going to catch his rhythm. He caught his rhythm and he’s doing it consistently now. It’s game after game after game. That’s kind of the all-star Caris we saw at the beginning of last year and the playoffs last year. It’s great to see and it’s great news for the Nets.
SPENCER DINWIDDIE (21 points, 11 assists, six rebounds)
What turned the game and allowed the Nets to get back in it? Finally in the fourth quarter we started getting stops. Obviously Caris was phenomenal offensively for us. Just our collective energy and effort beyond Caris’ offensive outburst was what got us back into the game.
Does the early deficit make this loss that much more disappointing? Definitely. If we had have played good defence the first three quarters – and credit Toronto, they are obviously a great basketball team, making shots and doing this to a lot of people – but 30-plus the first three quarters and then 19 in the fourth is tale of the tape right there.
Are there any positives to take from this loss? I don’t think we’re in the business of moral victories. We’re a playoff team as well. I think if you had asked me that two years ago we probably would’ve been like, “yeah, we played well. We fought. We’re a young group and we’re figuring it out.” We’re a playoff team. We need to figure out how to beat these teams that could be our first round matchup. We could play them, what, next week, four more or five more, six more times in the playoffs, right? You’ve got to be ready for that.