Will Raptors spell relief for Udoh, Warriors?


Will Raptors spell relief for Udoh, Warriors?

March 25, 2011

TORONTO (20-51) vs.
WARRIORS (30-42)

Coverage begins at 7 P.M. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area

OAKLAND (AP) -- The Golden State Warriors are mired in a six-game losing streak, but may be hosting the right opponent to break out.

The Warriors have won six straight at home against the Toronto Raptors heading into Friday night's matchup in Oakland.

Golden State (30-42) returns home after an 0-4 trip in which it lost by an average of 18.3 points. The Warriors surrendered their highest point total of the season in Wednesday's 131-112 loss at Houston.

REWIND: Warriors beaten by Rockets, Martin's 34 points

"We are trying to develop and build things as a team," coach Keith Smart said. "This is a painful time we are in."

That pain could be eased with another home win over Toronto (20-51), which has lost by an average of 12.0 points in its last six visits to Golden State. The Raptors have dropped 13 of the last 17 meetings overall, falling 109-102 at home Nov. 8.

Toronto was unable to contain the Golden State backcourt of Stephen Curry and Monta Ellis, who combined for 62 points. Curry has excelled in three career games against the Raptors, averaging 32.7 points on 53.8 percent shooting along with 8.7 assists per game.

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The second-year guard hasn't been as productive during this losing streak, averaging 13.2 points on 42.5 percent shooting. Ellis has also struggled in this stretch with 15.3 points per game on 38.5 percent shooting.

"Our back is against the wall and we need to find a way to win," Ellis said. "We'll play it out and see what happens. We need to grind it out, play together and play smart and stay together as a team."

Veteran forward Dorell Wright was a rare bright spot Wednesday with a career-high 34 points, reaching 30 for the second time in four games.

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"It's OK but it's a team game and we lost," Wright said. "We didn't do what we wanted to do. There are no lessons learned, it's just basketball."

Toronto fell to 2-11 on the road against Western Conference opponents with Wednesday's 114-106 loss at Phoenix. The game was tied heading into the fourth quarter before the Raptors were outscored 28-20.

REWIND: Brooks sparks Suns to 114-106 win over Raptors

"We didn't make any shots," said coach Jay Triano about the fourth quarter. "They went zone and we had open looks and didn't make them, and we didn't move the ball particularly well, but we still had open looks and didn't make them."

The Raptors have had problems with their fourth-quarter offense in the first three games of this five-game trip, averaging 19.0 points.

"We always can try and get better," guard Leandro Barbosa said. "We always can do more than we do in each game, so we know we could have won this game."

Andrea Bargnani scored 27 points and DeMar DeRozan added 19 on Wednesday.

Bargnani, however, has never scored 20 points against the Warriors, averaging 13.0 in nine games. His season average is 22.0.

Hundley still not ready to discuss future; Cain to start during final weekend

Hundley still not ready to discuss future; Cain to start during final weekend

PHOENIX — A few weeks ago, Nick Hundley said he preferred not to talk about his future until the end of the season. We’re close enough, so after hitting the go-ahead homer Monday night, Hundley was again asked about his 2018 plans. He smiled.

“How many have we got left? Five?” he said. “Ask me Sunday.”

It’s not just the media and fans seeking an answer from the popular backup who has nine homers. The Giants hope to get some feel from Hundley as they finalize offseason plans, and manager Bruce Bochy said he would talk to the veteran this week. Bochy left no doubt about what he hopes will happen.

“I think he knows what we think of him,” he said. 

Hundley, a 34-year-old who came over in the offseason, has been one of the few overachievers this season. He has 32 extra-base hits in 274 at-bats, taking advantage of increased time with Brandon Belt done for the year and Buster Posey sliding over to first base. Hundley is one of the lineup’s more potent right-handed options, and he has earned praise from the starting staff. Johnny Cueto said Hundley helped him navigate a post-clinch Diamondbacks lineup that was essentially pulled straight out of Triple-A. 

Cueto did so with ease, striking out eight in six innings. He evened his record at 8-8, and he’ll have a chance to clinch a winning season on Sunday. Bochy said Cueto will start the final game of the season, and he confirmed that Matt Cain will start either Friday or Saturday. Asked for more details, the manager kept it just as mysterious as his catcher. 

“I’ll let you know tomorrow,” he said.

Mariners club four home runs, end A's seven-game winning streak

Mariners club four home runs, end A's seven-game winning streak


OAKLAND -- Mitch Haniger homered twice and Felix Hernandez won for the first time in more than two months as the Seattle Mariners defeated the Oakland Athletics 7-1 on Monday night.

A day after being eliminated from playoff contention, the slumping Mariners snapped Oakland's season-high seven-game winning streak and its eight-game run at home - the team's second-longest in 11 years.

The Mariners had lost eight of nine.

Hernandez (6-5) gave up one run in six innings of two-hit ball. King Felix hadn't won since July 15, a stretch that included a stint on the disabled list from Aug. 2 to Sept. 13 with right shoulder bursitis. He was 0-2 with a 5.40 ERA in his previous five starts.

Haniger hit his 15th and 16th home runs off starter Daniel Gossett (4-10). The 24-year-old Oakland rookie gave up seven runs on a career-high four homers allowed.

Mike Zunino hit a three-run shot, his 24th, that broke a scoreless tie in the second. Yonder Alonso added his 26th homer, connecting against his former team.

Marcus Semien hit a solo homer off Hernandez in the sixth.

Andrew Albers pitched three shutout innings for his first save.

A's catcher Bruce Maxwell played his first game since becoming the first player in the majors to kneel during the national anthem Saturday, part of a national protest movement against discrimination and harsh treatment of blacks by police. He was greeted with a loud ovation along with some boos sprinkled in from the Oakland crowd of 9,329. Maxwell cleared the concussion protocol on Monday. He hadn't played since Sept. 20.

In an apparent show of support for Maxwell, most of the Oakland Unified School District band members took a knee as they performed the national anthem before the game.

2,500 CLUB:
The 31-year-old Hernandez became the fifth active pitcher to log more than 2,500 career innings.

Mariners: INF Jean Segura (sprained right middle finger) will likely miss the remainder of the series, manager Scott Servais said. "He wants to get in there before the season's over. It's important to him, but he's not going to be available for a couple of days," Servais said.

Athletics: 1B Matt Olson was scheduled to have an MRI to determine the severity of a hamstring injury he sustained Sunday. The 23-year-old rookie will miss the rest of the series, manager Bob Melvin said. Olson has 25 home runs in 189 at-bats. "We're hoping we can get him back in Texas, but I'm not so sure about that," Melvin said. ... LHP Sean Manaea, who missed his last scheduled start on Saturday with upper back tightness, threw a bullpen and is on track to make his next start Thursday, Melvin said.

Mariners: LHP James Paxton (12-5, 3.03 ERA) is 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA in two starts since coming off the DL on Sept. 14. He had been sidelined with a strained left pectoral muscle. Paxton is 3-0 with a 3.77 ERA in five career starts against Oakland.

Athletics: RHP Daniel Mengden (2-1, 3.30) is 2-0 with a 0.82 ERA in his last three starts. Mengden took the loss in his only career start against Seattle last season. He struck out six and gave up two runs on five hits and two walks in five innings.