Date: April 8, 2013

Elias Says...

By Elias Sports Bureau, Inc.
Special to



Anthony pours it on

From Elias: The Knicks extended their winning streak to 12 games with a 125-120 victory at Oklahoma City, led by Carmelo Anthony's 36 points. Anthony, who made 15 of 29 shots from the floor, has made at least 15 field goals in each of his last four games. Over the last 25 seasons (1988-89 to date), the only other NBA player with 15 or more field goals in each of four straight games is Kobe Bryant, who had two such streaks over that span (four straight games in December 2000 and a five-game streak in March 2007).

New York Knicks, Oklahoma City Thunder


Another milestone for Bryant

From Elias: Kobe Bryant eclipsed the 2000-point mark for the season in the Lakers' loss to the Clippers. Bryant became the fourth player in NBA history to score 2000 points in a season at age 34 or older, joining Alex English, Michael Jordan and Karl Malone, each of whom did so twice. However, Bryant is the oldest NBA player ever to reach that milestone in a season in which he also handed out 400 or more assists.

Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers


Last minute comeback for Memphis

From Elias: Mike Conley's field goal with 30 seconds remaining in the game gave Memphis the lead in its 89-87 win at Sacramento. It was the Grizzlies' seventh win this season in games that they trailed in the final minute of either the fourth quarter or overtime. Only the Heat (11), Hawks (7) and Trail Blazers (7) have won as many games in that fashion this season as the Grizzlies.

Memphis Grizzlies, Sacramento Kings


Harris finds the Magic

From Elias: Tobias Harris scored a game-high 26 points in the Magic's loss at Cleveland. That increased Harris' scoring average to 16.3 points per game in 23 games for Orlando, after he averaged only 4.9 points per game for the Bucks before being traded at the deadline. Among players who have played for two or more NBA teams this season, only Rudy Gay (19.1 PPG in 28 games for the Raptors) has a higher scoring average with his current team than Harris has for the Magic.

Orlando Magic, Cleveland Cavaliers


Favors doubles off the bench

From Elias: Derrick Favors scored 12 points and grabbed 13 rebounds in 30 minutes off the bench to help Utah defeat the Warriors. It was the seventh double-double for Favors as a non-starter this season after doing that in nine games last season. Favors tied a franchise record with 16 double-doubles off the bench for the Jazz over the course of consecutive seasons. John Stockton had 16 of them as a non-starter for Utah (with points and assists) from 1985-86 to 1986-87.

Utah Jazz, Golden State Warriors

Celtics have the Wizards' number

From Elias: The Celtics beat the Wizards to extend their winning streak against Washington to seven games (since January 1, 2012). That's Boston's longest winning streak against the Wizards since it won seven straight games against them from 1992 to 1994.

Boston Celtics, Washington Wizards



Ovechkin has the scoring touch

From Elias: Alex Ovechkin scored two goals in the Capitals' win over the Lightning on Sunday, after scoring three times in Washington's victory against the Panthers on Saturday. It's the fifth time that Ovechkin has scored five goals over a two-game span in his NHL career but the first since 2009 (January 31: two goals vs. Detroit, February 1: three goals vs. Ottawa).

Washington Capitals, Tampa Bay Lightning


Toews leads Blackhawks to the playoffs

From Elias: The Blackhawks overcame a 3-2 deficit in the third period and posted a 5-3 win against Nashville that clinched a playoff spot for Chicago. Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews scored the game-winning goal at the 10:32 mark of the final period, only 55 seconds after he assisted on Brandon Saad's score-tying goal. Toews has scored 12 goals in the 19 games he's played since February 28. The only NHL player with more than a dozen goals since that date is Alex Ovechkin (17).

Chicago Blackhawks, Nashville Predators


Shooting Star

From Elias: It was a memorable last five days for Dallas forward Alex Chiasson, who made his NHL debut on Wednesday, scored his first goal on Friday and then scored two goals in the Stars' shootout win at San Jose on Sunday. Chiasson was the first Dallas rookie to record a multiple-goal game since April 2, 2010, when Jamie Benn tallied twice in a home-ice win versus Edmonton. He was the first Stars rookie to score two goals in a road game since March 3, 2009, when James Neal did so in the same venue as Chiasson: HP Pavilion at San Jose.

Dallas Stars, San Jose Sharks


20 wins for Backstrom

From Elias: Minnesota goaltender Niklas Backstrom reached the 20-win plateau for the sixth time in his seven seasons in the NHL with his 3-0 victory against the Blue Jackets in Columbus. Backstrom needed fewer games to reach that mark this year (32) than in any of his other 20-win seasons. It took him 33 games to do that in 2007-08. The only season in which Backstrom failed to record 20 wins was 2011-12, when he notched victory #19 on March 31 but went winless in the two games he played in April.

Minnesota Wild, Columbus Blue Jackets


Elliott shuts down the Wings

From Elias: Brian Elliott, whose nine shutouts last season were the second-most among NHL goaltenders, recorded his first shutout this year when he led the Blues to a 1-0 win over the Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. It was only the fifth time in the Blues' 45 seasons in the NHL that they shut out the Red Wings in a regular-season game in Detroit. The other goaltenders with regular-season shutouts for the Blues in Motown were Glenn Hall (1969), Guy Hebert (1993), Manny Legace (2007) and Ty Conklin (2009).

St. Louis Blues, Detroit Red Wings


Clemmensen tops Ottawa

From Elias: Florida goaltender Scott Clemmensen made 40 saves in his 2-1 win over the Senators. Clemmensen had been winless (0-3-1) in four previous games against Ottawa since he joined the Panthers in 2009, allowing a total of 17 goals on the 99 shots he faced and at least four goals in each game.

Florida Panthers, Ottawa Senators



A day like no other

From Elias: David Price allowed eight runs in the Rays' 13-0 loss to the Indians on Sunday and R.A. Dickey was charged with eight runs in the Blue Jays' 13-0 loss to the Red Sox. It marked the first time that two reigning Cy Young Award winners were each charged with seven or more runs on the same day.

Tampa Bay Rays, Cleveland Indians, Toronto Blue Jays


Masterson masters the masters

From Elias: Justin Masterson topped David Price on Sunday, after he beat R.A. Dickey in the Tribe's season opener. Masterson became the third pitcher to register victories over two reigning Cy Young Award winners in one season (with the award winners being tagged with the losses), and he was the first to do so in consecutive starts. San Diego's Bruce Hurst defeated both Orel Hershiser and Frank Viola in 1989, and Atlanta's Shane Reynolds beat both Barry Zito and Randy Johnson in 2003. The Indians have won 11 of their last 16 games in which the opposing starter was a defending Cy Young winner, dating back to 2007 when they won five of the six games in which they faced Johan Santana.

Cleveland Indians, Tampa Bay Rays


Red Sox get to Dickey early

From Elias: The Red Sox had five straight hits against R.A. Dickey to begin Sunday's game, capped by the first of three home runs by Will Middlebrooks. Dickey allowed five first-inning runs, matching the number of runs that he allowed during the first inning of games in the entire 2012 season. Sunday's game was the first of Dickey's major-league career in which the first five batters he faced all recorded hits. He's the first defending Cy Young Award winner to allow hits to the first five batters he faced in a game since Baltimore's Mike Cuellar did that at Fenway Park on September 4, 1970.

Boston Red Sox, Toronto Blue Jays


Ninth spot stings Verlander

From Elias: Jayson Nix hit a two-run homer off Justin Verlander to give the Yankees a 3-0 lead in the second inning of their 7-0 win at Detroit. It was the first regular-season home run that Verlander allowed to a starter in the ninth spot of the batting order since Russell Martin took him deep at Yankee Stadium on April 27, 2012. Martin's homer was the only one allowed by Verlander in 262 at-bats against him by starters in the bottom-third of the batting order last season. New York's Eduardo Nunez homered off Verlander from the nine-hole in Game 3 of the 2012 ALCS.

New York Yankees, Detroit Tigers


Hinske homers in 11th inning

From Elias: Eric Hinske's two-run homer in the 11th inning was the decisive blow in the Diamondbacks' 8-7 triumph at Milwaukee. It was Hinske's sixth home run in 47 career at-bats in the tenth inning or later. Hinske's career home-run rate in extra innings (7.8 at-bats per homer) is the third-highest among active players who have hit at least three overtime homers. The higher rates belong to Nelson Cruz (6.0 AB/HR) and Albert Pujols (7.3).

Arizona Diamondbacks, Milwaukee Brewers


Byrd spoils youngster's debut

From Elias: Marlon Byrd's two-run single in the bottom of the ninth inning lifted the Mets to a 4-3 victory over the Marlins and spoiled the major-league debut of Miami starter Jose Fernandez. It was the fifth time in Byrd's big-league career that he won a game with a walk-off RBI, but it was the first of those games in which Byrd's team was trailing at the time of his game-ender. The 20-year-old Fernandez struck out eight batters in his five-inning stint to become the youngest pitcher to register eight or more strikeouts in his major-league debut since June 27, 1973, when the Rangers' 18-year-old David Clyde struck out eight Twins batters in his first game in the majors.

New York Mets, Miami Marlins

Reds get to Strasburg

From Elias: The Reds tallied three runs off Stephen Strasburg in both the first and sixth innings of their 6-3 win at Cincinnati. Strasburg had been charged with three or more runs in an inning only eight times over his previous 46 major-league starts and he had never before allowed a pair of three-run innings in one game.

Washington Nationals, Cincinnati Reds


Phillies lose despite rallies in the first and ninth innings

From Elias: The Phillies took a 4-0 lead over the Royals in the bottom of the first inning on Sunday, before losing a 9-8 decision after their four-run rally in the bottom of the ninth inning fell one run short. It was Philadelphia's first loss in a game in which it scored at least four runs in both the first and ninth innings since a 16-8 loss at Los Angeles on July 25, 1979, and it was the Phillies' first such loss in a home game since August 3, 1958 (a 12-10 defeat at the hands of the Cubs in the second game of a doubleheader).

Philadelphia Phillies, Kansas City Royals


Contact might be overrated

From Elias: The Braves completed a three-game series sweep of the Cubs with a 5-1 victory on Sunday despite Atlanta's batters striking out 16 times (including four by Justin Upton). It was the second game this season in which Braves batters racked up 16 strikeouts, but the Braves won both of those games. (The first was a 9-2 victory against Roy Halladay and the Phillies.) Braves batters struck out 16 or more times in only one game over the previous three seasons combined, and Atlanta won that game too (18 strikeouts in a 5-0 victory against the Phillies on May 6, 2011).

Atlanta Braves, Chicago Cubs


It wasn't Cain's day

From Elias: Matt Cain was charged with nine runs in the fourth inning of the Giants' 14-3 loss to the Cardinals. Cain was the first pitcher to allow as many as nine runs in an inning for a team that won the previous year's World Series since September 29, 2000, when the Yankees' Andy Pettitte was charged with nine runs during the second inning of a 13-2 loss to the Orioles.

San Francisco Giants, St. Louis Cardinals


Rookie wins

From Elias: Hyun-Jin Ryu was credited with his first major-league victory as the Dodgers topped the Pirates on Sunday. Throughout the majors this season, rookie pitchers are 3-5 in 11 starts, with the other wins registered by the Cardinals' Shelby Miller and Oakland's Dan Straily.

Los Angeles Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates

Another one-run loss for the Orioles

From Elias: The Twins erased a 3-0 deficit in their 4-3 win at Baltimore, after topping the O's by a 6-5 score on Saturday. The Orioles, who posted a 29-9 mark in "one-run" games last season (the best in major-league history for any team in a season in which it played at least 20 such games), hadn't lost two straight games, each by a one-run margin, since September 10-11, 2011 (both at Toronto). Baltimore hadn't lost two straight games, both by one-runs margins at home, since August 12-13, 2011 (to the Tigers).

Baltimore Orioles, Minnesota Twins

More whiffs for the Astros

From Elias: Astros batters stuck out 14 times in their loss to Oakland to increase their season total to 74, the most for any major-league team through its first six games of a season in the modern era (1900 to date). Houston's strikeout total hasn't come out of nowhere. Astros batters had 75 strikeouts over a six-game span last season (June 7-13).

Houston Astros, Oakland Athletics


Third home run for Rosario

From Elias: Wilin Rosario hit his third home run of the season for the Rockies as they completed a series sweep of the Padres on Sunday. Rosario tied the franchise record set by Charles Johnson in 2004 for the most home runs by a Colorado catcher through the team's first six games of a season.

Colorado Rockies, San Diego Padres