Stats & Info insights into this morning's top sports stories
1. SAVING THE DAY: FROM ELIAS: Henrik Lundqvist made 39 saves to lead the New York Rangers to a 1-0 win in Game 3 of their series against the Ottawa Senators, one day after the Kings’ Jonathan Quick stopped 41 shots in a 1-0 victory at Los Angeles. Since the NHL began officially recording shots on goal more than 50 years ago, the only other goaltender to make 39-or-more saves in a 1-0 shutout in a non-overtime game was Martin Brodeur against Carolina in 2009 (44 saves). The Rangers’ 1-0 victory was only their second playoff win by that score since 1941. Lundqvist accounted for that other 1-0 win as well, beating the Capitals by a lone goal in Washington in 2009.
2. LeBRON FINISHES STRONG: FROM ELIAS: LeBron James scored Miami’s final 17 points in the team’s victory over the New Jersey Nets on Monday night. James is the fourth player to score 17 straight points for his team in a game this season, joining Deron Williams (18 on March 4), Chris Paul (17 on February 22) and Mo Williams (17 on January 22). Prior to James, the last player to score his team’s final 17 points of a game was Denver’s J.R. Smith on April 13, 2009.
3. VERLANDER THROWING HEAT: Last year’s AL MVP and Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander got his first win of the season as the Detroit Tigers won 3-2. Verlander had a complete game on 131 pitches, one shy of his career-high. He threw 19 fastballs in the ninth inning. Of those, seven were over 98 MPH. His final pitch of the night was 100.3 MPH, tied for the fastest pitch he threw ALL GAME. Since 2009, Justin Verlander has the highest average fastball velocity for any starter in the ninth inning. He is also the only starter in that time frame to throw a pitch over 100 MPH in the ninth.
4. HALLADAY OUTDUELS LINCECUM: Roy Halladay won a battle of Cy Young pitchers, allowing two earned runs in 8 innings as the Philadelphia Phillies won 5-2 over the San Francisco Giants and Tim Lincecum. FROM ELIAS: Halladay has registered a win while pitching at least seven innings and allowing two-or-fewer runs in each of his first three starts of the season, something he also did in his first three starts in his first season with the Phils in 2010. In the 36 seasons preceding Halladay’s arrival, only one other Phillies pitcher that started the season with the team registered a win, seven plus innings pitched and two-or-fewer runs allowed in each of his first three starts: Dennis Cook in 1990.
5. WORKING OVERTIME: FROM ELIAS: The Utah Jazz defeated the Dallas Mavericks by a score of 123-121 in a triple overtime contest on Monday night. Utah has now played two games that have gone to at least triple overtime this season, losing a quadruple overtime game in Atlanta on March 25. Over the last 50 seasons, only five other teams have played multiple games that have gone to at least three overtimes in a single season: Phoenix in 1997-98 and 2005-06, New York in 2006-07, New Jersey in 2010-11 and Atlanta in 2011-12.