Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 4th 2017 Contents sports A51
Saturday, March 4, 2017 guardian.co.tt
Butler delivers 22 points
as Bulls beat Golden State
CHICAGO---Jimmy Butler scored
22 points as the Chicago Bulls
beat Golden State 94-87 on
Thursday night in the Warriors'
first game since Kevin Durant
injured his left leg.
Golden State was breathing a little
easier after learning Durant probably
will play again this season. He was
hurt two nights earlier in a loss at
The NBA-leading Warriors'
league-record regular-season streak
without consecutive losses ended at
Stephen Curry scored 23 points,
and Klay Thompson finished with 13.
The star guards combined to shoot
just 3 of 22 on 3-pointers, and the
Warriors made it back-to-back loss-
es for the first time since April 2015.
Bobby Portis added 17 points and
a season-high 13 rebounds for Chi-
cago. The Bulls outscored Golden
State 10-2 over the final three min-
utes to wipe out a one-point deficit
and come away with their fifth win
in six games.
Suns 120, Hornets 103
scored 17 points and Phoenix shot a
season-best 59.7 per cent from the
field against Charlotte.
Chriss shot 6 of 9 and missed
roughly a full quarter after straining
a calf early in the first.
TJ Warren added 16 points and
eight rebounds, and Alan Williams
had 16 points and 12 rebounds, in-
cluding a layup with 2:46 to play that
made it 114-99.
Leandro Barbosa also had 16
points, and Devin Booker had 15
points, nine assists and six rebounds.
Kemba Walker led the Hornets
with 26 points.
Trail Blazers 114, Thunder 109
PORTLAND---Damian Lillard had
33 points, including a key 3-pointer
with just under three minutes to go,
and Portland rallied to beat Oklaho-
Russell Westbrook scored 45
points on 12-of-36 shooting for the
Thunder, who had their four-game
winning streak snapped. Oklahoma
City newcomer Taj Gibson added
15 points, including a high-arching
buzzer-beater from 61 feet away to
put the Thunder up 60-57 at half-
time. Alex Abrines' 3-pointer put the
Thunder in front 97-89 with 7:48 left
for their biggest lead, but Al-Farouq
Aminu made a layup that tied it at
101 with 3:43 to go. He missed the
free throw, but Jusuf Nurkic got the
tip-in to give Portland the lead.
Lillard's 3-pointer extended the
advantage to 106-101.
Abrines' 3-pointer with 17.7 sec-
onds left narrowed it to 110-109.
Lillard was fouled twice in the final
seconds and made all four free throws
before Westbrook and Doug McDer-
mott missed 3-pointers at the end.
Westbrook hit all 15 of his free
throws. He had eight rebounds and
four assists, ending a streak of four
straight triple-doubles. (AP)
Boxing's big night?
NEW YORK---A combined record
of 60-0, with 41 knockouts. A
likely full Barclays Center. Net-
Boxing can always use an event
that makes folks take notice. And
this welterweight unification bout
figures to be quite a show tonight
when WBA champion Keith Thur-
man fights WBC titleholder Danny
Both can punch. Both can box.
Neither backs up.
Thurman is 27-0 with 22 KOs.
Garcia is 33-0 with 19 knockouts.
"This fight has been brewing and
that's the reason why this is hap-
pening," said Thurman, who then
proved he knows the ways of the ring
by referring to himself in the third
person. "I'm really happy to be in
this moment. Keith Thurman's had
a dream since he was a little boy, to
be not just your average champion,
but a great champion."
Beating Garcia might put him at
that level. Even though Garcia has
more bouts and some very impressive
victories, he's considered something
of an underdog. But he's as good as
anyone Thurman has faced, includ-
ing Shawn Porter, who lost a unan-
imous decision in a terrific fight in
Brooklyn last June.
Thurman has held some version of
the WBA crown since 2013. Garcia's
been the WBA champion since out-
pointing Robert Guerrero 13 months
ago. He's also held a variety of light-
He promises he is ready for what
could be a career-defining night.
"I've been the underdog before,"
Garcia said. "All underdog means is
that there are a whole bunch of peo-
ple who don't know what I can do.
I rise to the occasion every time. I
win because I'm better. On Saturday
night, I'm going to prove it again.
"I fight to win. I fight to secure my
family's future and that's what it's all
about. That's what we train so hard
for. I'm going to give the fans some-
thing to watch on Saturday.
"Legacy is very important to me. I
have more milestones than Thurman.
This is his biggest fight. I've been in
big fights before. Every champion-
ship fight is a part of history."
Ah, history. Way back in 1981, Sug-
ar Ray Leonard and Thomas Hearns
fought for the same titles, an instant
classic bout that solidified both of
their credentials as Hall of Famers.
No one is claiming Thurman-Gar-
cia will be the stuff of legend, but
it's rare in boxing nowadays to get
clearly the top two guys in a weight
class together in the ring. That's par-
ticularly true when both fighters are
in their primes---each is 28---and are
big-time knockout artists.
It's also rare to see such a fight not
on pay-per-view television, CBS has
this one, using Showtime's crews.
"The fact that this fight is on
broadcast television on CBS is a huge
plus for our business and anyone who
loves boxing," promoter Lou DiBella
said. "For a fight of this magnitude
to be available to so many people is a
tremendous thing for boxing."
The undercard has some intriguing
Erickson Lubin carries the nick-
name "Hammer" and has stopped
12 of his 17 opponents in a spotless
three-plus year career. At 20, he rec-
ognized he has an excellent oppor-
tunity to establish himself as a super
welterweight force against Jorge Cota
"If you don't know me now, you
will after Saturday night," he said.
"Come Saturday night, I'm going to
make my mark in the division. I will
become the youngest champion this
year. Mark my words."
Cota is no slouch, though, with a
25-1 mark and 22 knockouts. Until
an August decision over Yudel John-
son in Florida, Cota had never fought
At left, in an August 1, 2015, file photo, Danny Garcia competes against Paul Malignaggi during a welterweight fight
at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY. At right, in a June 25, 2016, file photo, Keith Thurman competes against Shawn
Porter during a WBA welterweight title fight at Barclays Center. AP PHOTO
Chicago Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg, left, talks with Jimmy Butler during the
second half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Golden State
Warriors on Thursday, in Chicago. The Bulls won 94-87. AP PHOTO
...Unbeaten Thurman, Garcia on network TV
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