April 4, 2011
Red Wings beat Wild to clinch Central Division Nicklas Lidstrom scored to help the Red Wings beat the Wild, 4-2, on Sunday night in Detroit and clinch their ninth division title in 10 seasons. "I've got a few of those," Lidstrom said, gesturing to a new Central Division champs T-shirt and cap. "It always matters to finish first. " Elsewhere: Mike Ribeiro scored twice, and the visiting Stars helped their playoff hopes with a 4-3 victory over the Ducks. . . . Marc-Andre Gragnani scored an overtime goal to lift the visiting Sabres past the Hurricanes, 2-1. . . . Patrik Berglund scored twice as the Blues humiliated the Blue Jackets on their home ice, 6-1. . . . Vincent Lecavalier scored a power-play goal in the first period before leaving with an injury in the Lightning's 2-0 win over the Blackhawks in Chicago.
December 8, 1989 |
Just when it looked as if the Sixers might finally beat the Pistons, Detroit's Vinnie Johnson decides he can score again. Last season, Johnson averaged 13.8 points per game in the regular season and 12.6 in the playoffs. But this year, through Detroit's first 16 games, he had averaged only 7.4 points, his lowest output in eight years. That was until Wednesday, two days before the Pistons were to play the Sixers, when Johnson went out and scored 24 points in a win over Washington.
February 3, 1989 |
Maybe it was just a coincidence that the Adrian Dantley trade rumors started a few days after an 80-79 loss to Cleveland. That game moved Isiah Thomas to say the Cavs had surpassed the Pistons, and that if the Pistons didn't do something, the balance of power in the Central Division wasn't going to shift back all by itself. Detroit stood pat after nearly winning the NBA title last spring. It's hard to say that was really a mistake - at 28-13, .683, the Pistons have the second-best winning percentage in the league, behind Cleveland (32-10, .762)
April 25, 1988 |
Three years ago, when 76ers owner Harold Katz was wrestling with whether to hire Chuck Daly or Matt Guokas as his coach, Isiah Thomas sent out a plea for Daly to remain the coach of the Detroit Pistons. "We can't afford to lose our 'Daddy Rich,' " the Pistons guard said then. "Daddy Rich. " That's what the Pistons call Daly, perhaps the ranking clothes horse among NBA coaches. Daly also has coached the Pistons to their first Central Division title and given them back-to-back seasons of 50 or more victories for the first time.
April 26, 1990 |
When the Detroit Pistons came storming out of the Central Division to win the NBA championship last year, there were few who bothered to doubt that the division was pre-eminent among the four divisions in the league. In fact - and the clippings of these stories are not yet yellow - there was speculation that the Central Division of the NBA might well be the strongest single division in the entire history of sports. Five of the six teams won 47 or more games, with only the Indiana Pacers failing to join the fun. Of those five teams, the worst of them, the team with the 47 victories, was the Chicago Bulls.
January 31, 1989 |
The most notable thing about tonight's Sixers-Cavs game in Cleveland is who probably isn't playing. For the Sixers, there's Charles Barkley, whose sprained right ankle is in a cast. Then there's Maurice Cheeks, whose slight shoulder separation might allow him to return by Friday's game against Detroit. And there's David Wingate, whose sore knees seem to be a little better, but won't allow him to play just yet. For the Cavs, there's star forward Larry Nance, listed as doubtful with an injury to a tendon in his left leg. Nance is averaging 18.5 points per game, and he recently went through a stretch of making 33 of 49 field-goal attempts.
November 13, 1987 |
Every so often, fans sentenced to watch the Sixers' attempts at a low-post inside game deserve a glimpse of how the other half lives. The Sixers certainly get a valiant effort from jump-shot specialists Tim McCormick and Chris Welp, 6-4 1/2 Charles Barkley, slender 6-9 Roy Hinson, and whatever Danny Vraneses, Mark McNamaras and Cliff Robinsons might be available. But there are teams in the NBA that don't have to live like this - teams that can send out waves of big, bulky, muscular guys up front.
March 4, 2013 |
This time last year, when the NHL laid out its original proposal for divisional realignment, the Flyers and Penguins were skating in separate "conferences. " After last spring's epic playoff series - and wild first two games this season - is there any chance the NHL would ever let that happen again? "Especially after the playoffs, I don't think they'll want to take that away again," Danny Briere said with a smile. "It's so complicated. You're trying to please as many teams as possible.
January 11, 1991 |
Beer might have made Milwaukee famous, but the biggest thing brewing in town right now is the Bucks' unbeaten streak at home. Milwaukee is 18-0 at the Bradley Center and in first place in the Central Division with a 25-9 mark. That's almost as surprising as the cast of characters who have accomplished the feat. When you think of players on division-leading teams, names such as Jack Sikma, Danny Schayes, Brad Lohaus and Frank Brickowski don't automatically come to mind. Yet that who's been helping the Bucks this season.
February 19, 1989 |
This is no place to start an NBA road trip. Nobody visits Richfield Coliseum and wins. As Michael Jordan's rim-hanging friend, Mars Blackmon, would say, nobody, nobody, noooooobody. Least of all the weary 76ers. Dragging through their fourth game in five days, the Sixers couldn't even make a quarter of it last night as they opened an eight-game road swing with a blistering 118-100 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Cleveland owns the best record in the league at 38-12. Over the last two seasons, the Cavs have won 31 of their last 33 games at home, including 23 of 25 this season.