<![CDATA[NBC Bay Area - Top News - [BAY ONLY INCLUDES CSN]Sports]]>Copyright 2018http://www.nbcbayarea.com/newsen-usSun, 21 Jan 2018 14:58:23 -0800Sun, 21 Jan 2018 14:58:23 -0800NBC Local Integrated Media<![CDATA[Top Stories]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2017 05:14:06 -0800]]><![CDATA[Raiders]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2017 05:13:32 -0800]]><![CDATA[College Sports]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2017 05:14:39 -0800]]><![CDATA[49ers]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2017 05:15:24 -0800]]><![CDATA[Sharks]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2017 05:16:03 -0800]]><![CDATA[Athletics]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2017 05:16:37 -0800]]><![CDATA[Warriors]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2017 05:17:10 -0800]]><![CDATA[Giants]]>Wed, 07 Jun 2017 05:17:45 -0800]]><![CDATA[Sharks Unable to Cap Off Comeback Against MacKinnon, Avs]]>Thu, 18 Jan 2018 21:13:55 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/sharks-avs-0118.jpg

The Sharks trailed for all but seven minutes and three seconds in a 5-3 loss to the Avalanche on Thursday. In those seven minutes and three seconds, the game was scoreless.

The Sharks, though, briefly made it a game. Colorado jumped out to a 4-0 lead, but San Jose scored three unanswered in a span of 15:37 across the second and third periods.

Timo Meier, Marc-Edouard Vlasic, and Joe Thornton got the Sharks back in the game, but Avalanche goalie Jonathan Bernier made 45 saves, and prevented San Jose from getting any closer than a goal. Nathan Mackinnon continued his torrid Hart Trophy push and scored two goals, while Carl Soderberg, Mikko Rantanen, and ex-Shark Matt Nieto added insurance for Colorado.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Nathan Mackinnon has arrived.

The MVP whispers are quickly becoming shouts, as Mackinnon scored for the fourth consecutive game, and now has seven, as well as 16 points during Colorado's eight-game winning streak. He was the game's best player from beginning to end, and it looks like he's truly joined fellow Cole Harbour product Sidney Crosby in the league's elite.

TURNING POINT: With a teammate in the box and his team nursing only a one-goal lead, Avalanche netminder Jonathan Bernier shut the door.

On the ensuing power play after Patrik Nemeth was booked for tripping, Bernier stopped all seven shots he faced. The Sharks wouldn't really threaten again, and Bernier's penalty kill heroics ultimately ensured that Matt Nieto's goal, the Avalanche's fifth, sealed the game.

INJURY ALERT: Jannik Hansen and Tim Heed were healthy scratches for San Jose. Hansen has not played in five consecutive games, and Heed has joined him in the press box for the last three.

A.J. Greer, Tyson Jost, and David Warsofsky were scratches for Colorado. Tyson Barrie (hand), J.T. Compher (upper body), Vladislav Kamenev (broken arm), and starting goaltender Semyon Varlamov (groin) remain on injured reserve.

WHAT'S NEXT: The Sharks return home for a rematch of the 2017 Stanley Cup final against the reigning champion Penguins, who as of press time had won five of their last seven games. Pittsburgh swept the season series, outscoring San Jose 8-2.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Sending Two Behind-the-Scenes Workers to Olympics]]>Thu, 18 Jan 2018 21:43:04 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/214*120/Sharks_Sending_Two_Behind_the_Scenes_Workers_to_Olympic.jpg

The San Jose Sharks have two longtime employees who have earned a trip to the Pyeongchang Olympics: Director of Event Presentation Steve Maroni will be working his fifth Winter Games, and he'll be joined by Sharks public address announcer Danny Miller. Colin Resch has their story in the above video.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Former Cal Women's Hoops Star Files Sexual Assault Lawsuit]]>Thu, 18 Jan 2018 20:40:37 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/layisha-clarendon-0118.jpg

Former Cal women's basketball player Layshia Clarendon has sued the university alleging she was sexually assaulted by an Athletic Department employee.

The lawsuit, first reported by ESPN, says Clarendon was sexually assaulted by Mohammed Muqtar, a longtime member of the UC Berkeley Athletic Department. The assault occurred in 2009, during Clarendon's freshman year, when Muqtar, 61, invited her back to his apartment, according to the suit filed in Alameda County Superior Court.

The university responded Thursday, saying it is reviewing the lawsuit and that "Layisha holds a special place in our history, and we are saddened to hear of the allegations that came to light on Wednesday."

Muqtar is listed on the Cal Athletics website as the assistant director of student services.

Clarendon, who hails from San Bernardino, had a decorated four-year career with the Golden Bears, winning numerous honors on the court and in the classroom.

Here's the full statement from Cal:

"The University has received the complaint and is in the process of reviewing it. Our department policy states that once anyone in Cal Athletics is made aware of any instance or allegation of a violation of University policy involving a coach, staff member or student-athlete, those matters are referred to the appropriate departments on campus responsible for investigating them. Athletics does not have its own specific conduct process nor does it investigate allegations or cases on its own, but follows the University’s policy and works in concert with campus professionals who are responsible for those areas.

"All university staff are also required to complete sexual harassment and sexual violence prevention training, and those programs have increased in recent years. Cal Athletics is and will always be committed to fostering a culture where everyone feels safe, welcome and respected. We encourage anyone who is feeling distressed or troubled to contact the PATH to Care Center and other campus resources.

"Layshia holds a special place in our history for her contributions to Cal women’s basketball both on and off the court and we are saddened to hear of the allegations that came to light on Wednesday."

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Steph, Klay Lead Warriors to 14th Straight Road Win]]>Wed, 17 Jan 2018 21:48:03 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/klay-lopez-bulls-ap.jpg

Despite losing Jordan Bell inside the first minute and not having Draymond Green or Andre Iguodala at all, the Warriors on Wednesday won their 14th straight road game, tying a franchise-record.

With Klay Thompson (season-high 38 points) and Stephen Curry (30) leading the way, the Warriors rode a tremendous third quarter and held off a late Bulls rally for a 119-112 victory at United Center in Chicago.

The Warriors (37-9) led by as much as 19 in the victory gave them a sweep of the two-game season series with the Bulls for only the second time since 2000-01.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Thompson and Curry, AKA the Splash Brothers, were fairly equal partners in taking down the Bulls.

Thompson’s line: 38 points (12-of-22 shooting from the field, including 7-of-13 from beyond the arc, 7-of-9 from the line), four rebounds, two assists and a block. He played 37 minutes and finished plus-14.

Curry’s line: 30 points (10-of-18 shooting, 6-of-11 from deep, 4-of-4 from the line), nine rebounds, five assists and one steal. He played 35 minutes and finished plus-21.

TURNING POINT: Trailing 66-63 at the half, the Warriors opened the second half with a 28-6 burst to take a 91-72 lead on a pair of Durant free throws with 2:59 left in the third quarter.

The Warriors at one point during that stretch reeled off 19 unanswered points, holding Chicago to 0-of-13 shooting and three turnovers.

The Bulls rallied late, getting as close as five inside the final minute before the Warriors closed it out.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: Jordan Bell left the game with 11: 36 remaining in the first quarter after sustaining a sprained left ankle in an effort to block a dunk by Chicago center Robin Lopez. Bell did not return and will undergo an MRI test on Thursday. F Draymond Green (R shoulder soreness) and F Andre Iguodala (L calf contusion) were listed as out.

Bulls: G Cameron Payne (R foot surgery) was listed as out. G Kris Dunn left late in the game after landing on his face following a breakaway dunk.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action on Saturday in Houston, where they face the Rockets at Toyota Center. Tipoff is scheduled for 5:35 p.m.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Radio Man Dan Rusanowsky Calls 2,000th NHL Game]]>Tue, 16 Jan 2018 22:00:23 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/shark-tank-rusi-0116.jpg

The San Jose Sharks radio play-by-play broadcaster, Dan Rusanowsky, called his 2,000th regular season NHL game Tuesday night during the Sharks' shootout win over the Arizona Coyotes, according to the team's website.

Rusanowsky has called every regular season and Stanley Cup Playoff game in Sharks franchise history, with the exception of 27 regular season games he missed during the 2000-01 season after he was injured in an auto accident, the Sharks said.

The 38-year veteran will be recognized for the milestone at SAP Center in San Jose during the Jan. 23 Sharks game against the Winnipeg Jets, the team said.

In 2013, Rusanowsky was inducted into the Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame in the sports category.

Photo Credit: Getty Images file/San Jose Sharks]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Remain Undefeated After Bye Week With Win in Arizona]]>Tue, 16 Jan 2018 21:12:13 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/sharks-thornton-0116.jpg

For the second time in four days, the San Jose Sharks and Arizona Coyotes needed a shootout to decide a winner. Just like Saturday, the Sharks skated away victorious, beating the desert dogs this time by a score of 3-2.

San Jose jumped out to a 2-0 lead, thanks to goals from Joe Thornton and Mikkel Boedker. Arizona's Jordan Martinook cut the lead to one in the second period, while Brad Richardson tied the game with 6:10 remaining in regulation.

1:07 into overtime, Tomas Hertl tripped Max Domi, leaving the Sharks with a 4-on-3 disadvantage. Aaron Dell stopped all four shots he faced in the extra frame, as well as the shootout, while Joe Pavelski tallied San Jose's lone shootout goal to give them their second win in as many nights.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Dell deserves top marks for his overtime heroics, but who else could we have picked but Mikkel Boedker? With his second period goal, the Danish winger has scored goals in consecutive games for just the second time in his Sharks career.

He's also scored points in three straight, and is now part of a formidable third line alongside Chris Tierney and Joonas Donskoi. San Jose needs those three to score down the stretch, and they've been up to the task following the bye week.

TURNING POINT: Jordan Martinook's goal with 4:05 remaining in the second period halved the Sharks' lead, and forced San Jose into a defensive shell. Fom Martinook's goal onward, Arizona out-attempted San Jose 34-16 during five-on-five play, according to hockeystats.ca.

The Sharks were on their heels before that, no doubt due to fatigue on the second night of a back-to-back. They still managed to get two points, but dropping points to a division rival is never ideal, even if that rival is only playing for lottery positioning.

INJURY ALERT: Jannik Hansen and Tim Heed were healthy scratches for San Jose, while Arizona scratched Kevin Connauton, Zac Rinaldo, and Freddie Hamilton.

Hansen has now been scratched in four consecutive games, while Heed has not played in the last two.

WHAT'S NEXT: The Sharks conclude their three-game road trip in Denver against Long Beach native Matt Nieto and the red-hot Colorado Avalanche. Colorado's seven-game winning streak is the league's longest active streak.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Turn It On In Second Half, Run Past Cavaliers]]>Mon, 15 Jan 2018 23:41:28 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/warriors-cavs-0115.jpg

For the second time in three seasons, the Golden State Warriors have swept the two-game series with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Getting a big boost from their second unit in the fourth quarter Monday night, the Warriors came away with a 118-108 win over the Cavs at Quicken Loans Arena.

Kevin Durant scored a team-high 32 points to lead the offense. Stephen Curry put in 23 points and Klay Thompson added 17. Draymond Green totaled 11 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists as the Warriors extended their road win streak to 13.

The Warriors (36-9) have beaten Cleveland seven of the last eight times they have played -- including the postseason -- since Christmas Day 2016.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Multiple Warriors played exceedingly well, particularly late, but nobody was better than Durant, whose work at both ends was crucial to the victory.

Durant’s line: 32 points (9-of-16 shooting from the field, including 4-of-6 from deep, 10-of-10 from the line), eight assists, five rebounds, three steals and one block. He played 35 minutes and finished plus-9

Durant also was the primary defender on LeBron James, who finished with 32 points but was minus-14 in 36 minutes.

TURNING POINT: After Isaiah Thomas drained a jumper to tie the game at 93-93 with 11:46 remaining, the Warriors responded with a 12-2 run punctuated by a Draymond Green layup that gave them a 105-95 lead with 5:44 left to play.

The Cavaliers got no closer than eight after that.

Cleveland shot 52.1 percent shooting from the field through the first three quarters before the Warriors locked down in the fourth, holding the Cavaliers to 26.1 percent.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: F Omri Casspi (low back soreness), F Andre Iguodala (hip flexor strain) and G Shaun Livingston (L shin contusion) were upgraded to available prior to tipoff.

Cavaliers: G Derrick Rose (L ankle sprain) and G Iman Shumpert (L knee surgery rehab) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to the court on Wednesday in Chicago, where they face the Bulls at United Center. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 4 p.m., with tipoff scheduled for 5:05.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Seal Season Series With Victory Over Kings]]>Mon, 15 Jan 2018 16:15:59 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-win-ap.jpg

LOS ANGELES -- Chris Tierney had a goal and an assist, and Martin Jones made 35 saves in the San Jose Sharks' third straight victory over the rival Los Angeles Kings, 4-1 Monday.

Barclay Goodrow and Mikkel Boedker ended lengthy goal droughts for the Sharks, who built a three-goal lead during another strong game by Jones against his former Los Angeles teammates.

Dylan DeMelo returned from a three-game injury absence with two assists for his second career multipoint game. Joonas Donskoi also had two assists, and Joe Thornton added an empty-net goal.

Trevor Lewis ended Jones' shutout bid with 7:18 to play, but the Kings lost their fourth straight.

Darcy Kuemper stopped 29 shots in his first start since Dec. 16 for the Kings, who have slumped into third place after leading the Pacific Division for a good chunk of the season. With a 5-7-3 record in division play, LA is just one point ahead of the Sharks, who have two games in hand.

Jones followed up his 2-0 win at the Shark Tank on Dec. 23 with another near-shutout of the Kings. Jones, who won a Stanley Cup ring as Jonathan Quick's backup, improved to 9-3-2 in 14 career appearances against Los Angeles.

The Sharks went ahead just 4:38 in when the Kings lapsed on defense, allowing Donskoi to make a pass across the crease to an unchecked Tierney for his 11th goal.

Goodrow added his third goal of the season midway through the second period, converting DeMelo's rebound in the slot. The goal was his first since Dec. 7.

San Jose had an extra step on the Kings throughout the first two periods and nearly added to its lead in the closing seconds, but Los Angeles defenseman Christian Folinstopped a shot with his skate on the goal line.

Boedker added his first goal since Nov. 24 in the third period, ending a 12-game drought.

Lewis got help from Marian Gaborik in scoring his 11th goal. The grinding forward scored a career-high 12 goals last season while playing in all 82 games.

NOTES: Quick got the day off for the Kings after nine consecutive starts. The former Conn Smythe Trophy winner gave up three goals in LA's loss to Anaheim last Saturday. ... Sharks D Tim Heed was scratched in DeMelo's place. ... DeMelo also had two assists against Detroit on Jan. 7, 2017. ... Kings F Jonny Brodzinski was scratched in his first game back from the AHL's Ontario Reign.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Stanford Gymnast's Perfection Vaults Her to the Top]]>Thu, 11 Jan 2018 20:15:26 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/price_stanford_0111_1376716.JPG

She was an alternate on the 2012 U.S. Olympic gymnastics team in London. She won an individual NCAA championship in 2015 on the vault. But what Stanford's Elizabeth Price did earlier this week was arguably her greatest feat yet.

The lone senior on the Cardinal's women's gymnastics team seems to be a fan of firsts.

"So right now I'm currently ranked first in the nation in floor, in uneven bars and in all-around," Price said.

All of those firsts are a byproduct of Price's performance in the team's first meet of the season Monday night. Her total of 39.675 is tops in the country, and her score on the uneven bars a big reason why.

"When you finally get that 10, it's like, 'Oh my gosh, I did a perfect routine; that felt perfect,'" Price said. "And the judges thought it was perfect, and that's just a huge accomplishment and an amazing feeling to say I just did a perfect bar routine."

Stanford's first-year head coach Tabitha Yim, like Price, is one of the most decorated gymnasts in school history. But even she never reached perfection.

"She's extremely dynamic," Yim said about Price. "There's nobody who flies higher than her in the air. Her connections are the most difficult in the country, and so I think she fully deserved that 10."

The feat is rare, but so are Price's skills.

"She's like a superhero for our team," Yim said.

Price's was just the 17th perfect 10 in the 40-year history of the Stanford program. The last one?

"I've had two perfect 10s since being at Stanford," Price said. "One on vault my freshman year and then my second one Monday night."

Not a bad way to begin her senior year.

"You really just want to build on that," she said. "I mean, that's a great way to start. It just shows all the potential that I have for the rest of the season and really gives me something to strive for."

Yim said she's not surprised Price was able to achieve another perfect 10: "I think that we'll see a few more from her this season."

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Durant Hits Milestone, Warriors Lose Without Splash Bros.]]>Wed, 10 Jan 2018 22:43:13 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/louwilliams-durant-ap.jpg

OAKLAND -- The Warriors over three-plus seasons beat the Clippers 12 consecutive times, sometimes humiliatingly so. The streak ended Wednesday night in most inglorious fashion.

Though the Warriors were without Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, the Clippers came in minus four of their five starters and hung a 125-111 defeat on the defending champs before a stunned sellout crowd at Oracle Arena.

Kevin Durant (40 points) and Zaza Pachulia (12) were the only Warriors to score in double figures in the loss that snapped a five-game win streak.

The Warriors (33-9) were outrebounded 46-33 and absolutely torched by LA guard Lou Williams, who scored 50 points, 27 in the third quarter.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Durant was splendid on offense. He did not have much help.

Durant’s line: a season-high 40 points (14-of-18 shooting from the field, including 6-of-7 from beyond the arc), four rebounds, four assists, one block and one steal. He played 31 minutes and finished minus-4.

The 40 points also ties Durant’s high as a member of the Warriors.

KD 20K: Durant entered the game needing 25 points to reach 20,000 for his career. He scored exactly 25 in the first half, reaching the milestone on a 22-foot jumper with 1:41 left in the half.

Durant is the 44th player to reach the 20,000 mark and, at 29 years and 103 days, the second youngest. LeBron James reached 20,000 at 28 years and 17 days.

Durant is the first player to score his 20,000th point as a member of the Warriors.

TURNING POINT: When an Omri Casspi layup pulled the Warriors within three, 92-89, with 1:11 left in the third quarter, the Clippers responded with a 19-3 run to go up 111-92 with 6:17 remaining in the game.

The Warriors got no closer than 13 over the final six minutes.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: G Stephen Curry (R ankle sprain) and G Klay Thompson (rest) are listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Clippers: G CJ Williams (R ankle sprain) left the game in the third quarter and did not return. G Milos Teodosic (plantar fasciitis) was listed as questionable and declared out prior to tipoff. G Patrick Beverley (R knee surgery), F Danili Gallinari (L glute injury), F Blake Griffin (concussion protocol) and G Austin Rivers (R ankle injury) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors leave the Bay Area on Thursday for a five-game road trip that begins Friday against the Bucks at BMO Harris Bradley Center in Milwaukee. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 4 p.m. Pacific, with tipoff scheduled for 5:05.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Curry, Warriors Hold Off Pesky Nuggets for Win No. 33]]>Mon, 08 Jan 2018 23:43:12 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/curry-flex-warriors-nuggets-usatsi.jpg


OAKLAND — Stephen Curry scored 32 points and dished out nine assists in another superb performance during his sensational recent stretch, and the Golden State Warriors beat the Nuggets 124-114 on Monday night to avenge an ugly home loss to Denver in late December.

Nikola Jokic had his first triple-double of the season with 22 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists as four players scored 20 points or more for the Nuggets, who were coming off a 106-98 loss at Sacramento on Saturday.

Klay Thompson scored 19 on his bobbblehead night while Draymond Green added a season-high 23 points and 10 assists in the defending NBA champions' fifth straight victory on a night when Kevin Durant sat out his third consecutive game with a strained right calf.

In his 12th 30-point game of the season, Curry hit a long 3-pointer with 56.1 seconds left in the third and the Warriors led 93-81 going into the final quarter after the Nuggets had fought back to tie it midway through the period.

The two-time MVP has scored 29 or more points in seven straight games. In four games before Monday, he was averaging 36 points, six rebounds, 4.8 assists and 1.3 steals in 31.8 minutes since returning from an 11-game absence with a sprained right ankle.

The Western Conference Player of the Week for last week, Curry strained his left knee in the first half, headed to the locker room to have it taped and then returned.

Golden State's David West contributed 10 points, scoring in double figures for a third straight game to go with six rebounds and four assists while becoming the 127th player in NBA history to play in 1,000 regular-season games.

Thompson made his initial four shots and Green scored eight quick points, connecting on his first three field goal attempts. He dished out five assists as Golden State raced ahead 27-20 — a far cry from the Warriors' previous performance in a 96-81 loss to Denver at Oracle Arena on Dec. 23.

The Warriors shot 3 for 27 in that game from 3-point range but topped that with four 3s in the first quarter Monday and finished 13 for 30 from deep.

Thompson's 3-pointer with 4:10 left in the third made it 78-71 after Denver had tied the game 89-all at the 6:57 mark of the period.

The Nuggets held the Warriors to a season-low scoring performance here last time that snapped their 11-game winning streak. Golden State has won seven of eight since.

Denver got 22 points from Gary Harris, and 21 apiece from Jamal Murray and Trey Lyles.

DURANT UPDATE: Kerr said Durant "didn't feel quite right" after going through shootaround earlier in the day.

"We're all on the same page that until he feels right, he's not going to play," Kerr said. "Hopefully the next couple of days he'll clear that hurdle and be ready to go."

GREEN FINED: Green was fined $25,000 by the NBA for publicly criticizing the league's officiating in comments after Golden State's 121-105 win against the Clippers on Saturday.

CURRY THE OWNER? Curry has people helping him explore options to buy into the NFL's Carolina Panthers. Jerry Richardson announced he plans to sell the franchise while he is under investigation for sexual and racial misconduct in the workplace.

"It's a pretty interesting opportunity," Curry said after Monday's shootaround. "I've had conversations with plenty of people about the right way to go about it and kind of the different approaches I could personally take. Obviously I have a day job, but I've got people that are plugged in and trying to see how to make that happen. I've had nothing really to say about it besides that I'm very interested and very willing to do what it takes to make that happen."

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[San Jose Barracuda Goalie May Be Headed to Olympics]]>Mon, 08 Jan 2018 20:03:48 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/barracuda_goalie_0108_1338607.JPG

Last week, USA Hockey announced the first 23 players to make the roster for next month's Pyeongchang Olympics. Two spots have yet to be filled, and one of those could go to San Jose Barracuda goalie Parker Gahagen.

It's a nice story, regardless of whether he makes the team or not.

"He played for Army, you know," Barracuda coach Roy Sommer said. "He was one of the top goaltenders last year in college hockey, and we were fortunate enough to get him."

Sommer and the Barracuda got him thanks to a rather unique curriculum.

"It's called the world class athlete program for the Army, which allows soldiers to basically train for the Olympics," Gahagen said. "So I joined that."

And the second lieutenant did so knowing there was no blueprint for the journey he was about to embark upon.

"It's kind of weird because there was never really a hockey player in there so, you know, when you blaze paths, there's obviously bumps in the road," he said. "So, I kind of figured it out, and they made room for me there."

Indeed, Gahagen is on orders to train and play with the Barracuda until February. What happens after that even he doesn't know. But he does know if he were to make the Olympic team alongside teammate John McCarthy, it would clear some things up.

"Making the Olympics would make it a little more simple, where I'd go to the Olympics then come back here afterwards for the remainder of the season," Gahagen said.

Sommer said it's a positive all the way around.

"You know, two guys off the same team; that would be something special," the coach said. "Good for the organization, good for both those guys and, you know, what an honor."

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[49ers Hire Ken Norton Jr. as Assistant Head Coach]]>Mon, 08 Jan 2018 15:37:59 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/NORTON-0108.jpg

The 49ers on Monday announced Ken Norton Jr. has joined Kyle Shanahan's staff as assistant head coach - defense/inside linebackers.

Johnny Holland, the team's inside linebackers coach last season will become the team’s run game specialist/outside linebackers coach and Michael Clay will become an assistant special teams coach.

“Ken brings a great deal of knowledge and experience to our team having spent more than two decades as a NFL player and coach,” Shanahan said in a statement. “Throughout his coaching career, Ken has developed a tremendous understanding of our defensive system, making him a perfect fit for our staff. With four Super Bowl titles on his resume, including one as a 49er, Ken knows firsthand what it takes to become a championship caliber team.”

Norton, 51, spent the past 2 1/2 seasons as defensive coordinator for the Oakland Raiders under then-coach Jack Del Rio until his firing this past season.

He played in the NFL for 13 seasons, including his final seven years with the 49ers from 1994-2000. He was on two Super Bowl-winning teams as an inside linebacker with the Dallas Cowboys before winning a Super Bowl in his first season after signing with the 49ers as a free agent in 1994.

Norton spent five seasons as an assistant coach with the Seattle Seahawks as linebackers coach. He served three three seasons on Pete Carroll's staff with Robert Saleh, the 49ers' defensive coordinator. Saleh was the Seahawks' defensive quality control coach at the time.

Photo Credit: Getty Images file]]>
<![CDATA[Splash Brothers Help Warriors Hold Off Rockets]]>Thu, 04 Jan 2018 23:45:40 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/warriors-rockets-ap.jpg

HOUSTON -- With Kevin Durant out of action, the Warriors submitted a total team effort and knocked off the Rockets 124-114 Thursday night at Toyota Center.

Stephen Curry scored 29 points, Klay Thompson had 28 and Draymond Green put in 17 en route to a triple-double. Starting for Durant, Andre Iguodala had 10 points, while David West put in 12 and Nick Young 11.

The victory allowed the Warriors (31-8) to move three games ahead of the Rockets (27-10) as the two teams battle for the best record in the Western Conference.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Green and Thompson share the honors -- Thompson for his impactful scoring and Green for being the driving force behind the victory.

Green’s line: 17 points (4-of-8 shooting from the field, including 0-of-3 beyond the arc, 7-of-8 from the line), 14 rebounds, 10 assists, two steals and a block. Playing four of the five positions at various points, he totaled 38 minutes and finished a team-best plus-11.

Thompson’s line: 28 points (11-of-21 shooting, including 6-of-10 from deep), four assists and three rebounds. He scored 10 points in the fourth quarter as the Warriors held off the Rockets. Thompson He played 38 minutes and finished plus-7.

TURNING POINT: After a Gerald Green 3-pointer gave Houston an 88-83 lead with 1:40 left in the third quarter, the Warriors responded with an 18-3 run spanning the end of the quarter and the beginning of the fourth, to go up 101-91 with 9:57 remaining.

The Rockets got no closer than five the rest of the way.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: F Omri Casspi (back strain) was listed as questionable and declared out prior to tipoff. F Kevin Durant (R calf strain was listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Rockets: C Nene (knee soreness) was declared out prior to tipoff. G James Harden (L hamstring strain), F Luc Mbah a Moute (R shoulder dislocation) and F Troy Williams were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Saturday, when they face the Clippers at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 11:30 a.m., with tipoff scheduled for 12:35.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Battle Maple Leafs in Toronto, Outdone in Shootout]]>Thu, 04 Jan 2018 19:48:49 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-leafs-0104.jpg


TORONTO — Auston Matthews and Tyler Bozak scored in a shootout to give Toronto a 3-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night in a game that opened with a fight that saw the Maple Leafs' Nazem Kadri rip out part of Joe Thornton's mountain-man beard.

Toronto killed off Mitch Marner high-sticking penalty that gave the Sharks a 4-on-3 skating advantage for the final 1:50 of overtime.

Kevin Labanc was the lone successful San Jose shooter in six tries against Frederik Andersen in the tiebreaker.

Former Shark Patrick Marleau hit the post on his shootout attempt.

Matthews and Kadri scored in regulation for Toronto, and Brenden Dillon and Chris Tierney countered for San Jose.

Toronto snapped a three-game losing streak and a 10-game slid (0-8-2) against the Sharks.

Thornton and Kadri dropping the gloves just two seconds in after slashing each other at the opening faceoff.

The 38-year-old Thornton's beard took a beating in the scrap, thanks to Kadri hanging on to his beard rather than his jersey as he was twirled around by the bigger Shark. A hunk of Thornton's facial hair was left on the ice like a mini-tumbleweed, ultimately finding its way to the glove of backup goalie Aaron Dell on the San Jose bench.

"We were trying to figure out what it was," Tierney said when interviewed prior to the third period.

Matthews opened the scoring with 1:23 left in the first period with his 18th of the season.

Dillon tied it with 52 seconds left in the first.

Kadri scored on a power play midway through the second for his 14th goal.

Tierney tied it with 1:42 left in the period.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Source: Raiders Satisfy NFL's Rooney Rule]]>Thu, 04 Jan 2018 19:05:37 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/nfl-generic.jpg

The Raiders have satisfied the NFL's Rooney Rule, a source said Thursday, requiring NFL teams to interview at least one minority candidate for general manager and head coach positions.

ESPN's Josina Anderson first reported the news, stating the Raiders have interviewed two minority candidates. She also reports that the NFL told the chairman of the Fritz Pollard Alliance, an organization polices whether the NFL abides by the law, that the requirement has been met.

NFL reporter Adam Caplan said Raiders tight ends coach Bobby Johnson was one. Johnson coached his position all three years under Jack Del Rio and was well respected among his position group and the offensive line. Del Rio's assistants have been told they can look for work elsewhere.

The Raiders have come under some fire for having a coach virtually lined up before the hiring process truly began, though they aren't the first team to lock on to a candidate and beeline for him.

The Silver and Black have pioneered minority hiring in the NFL. The late owner Al Davis hired the league first Hispanic head coach (Tom Flores), the first African-American head coach (Art Shell) and the first female CEO (Amy Trask).

The Rooney Rule has its critics, and it could certainly be amended to ensure minority candidates get a fairer shake, but having that requirement is better than not having one at all. In this particular instance, though, any candidate will have a near-impossible task shaking the job from Gruden's grasp.

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Curry Nails Game-Winning 3-Pointer as Warriors Edge Dallas]]>Wed, 03 Jan 2018 21:20:32 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/steph-arms.jpg

DALLAS — Stephen Curry hit a long 3-pointer with three seconds to play, sending the Golden State Warriors to a 125-122 victory over the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night.

Curry finished with 32 points as Golden State's "Big Four" combined for 100 points — and the Warriors needed every one of them against a Mavericks team that had won four straight.

Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson had 25 points each, and Draymond Green added 18 to go with 10 rebounds.

Wesley Matthews led the Mavericks with 22 points, including seven 3-pointers, and Dwight Powell tied his career high with 21.

Dallas, playing from behind most of the game, wouldn't go away and erased a 12-point deficit with 4:32 to play, tying the score at 120 on Harrison Barnes' jumper with 39.9 seconds left.

Thompson and Barnes traded inside baskets before the Warriors got the ball back with 12 seconds to go. Curry took the inbounds pass and never gave it up, crossing over his dribble to shake a defender and hitting nothing but net.

A long heave by Dennis Smith Jr. at the buzzer was way off.

The Mavericks, who despite their 13-26 record have won or played close against most of the NBA's best teams, had lost their previous two meetings with the Warriors by a combined 45 points.

This time, Dallas fought back from deficits of 12 in the first half and nine in the third quarter, taking a lead at 84-83 on Devin Harris' 3-pointer with 3:40 to play in the period.

Patrick McCaw's layup just before the buzzer gave Golden State a 91-89 edge entering the fourth, and Green opened the final quarter with a three-point play as the Warriors rebuilt their lead to double digits before the final Mavs rally.

Golden State extended its road winning streak to eight games. The Warriors haven't lost away from Oracle Arena since before Thanksgiving.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Headquarters Land Deal Offered by City Near Vegas]]>Wed, 03 Jan 2018 16:28:59 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/las-vegas-raiders.jpg

The Oakland Raiders came one step closer Wednesday to securing the land the team needs for its new headquarters and practice facility near Las Vegas, and at a steep discount.

Officials in suburban Henderson approved a resolution that allows the city to move forward with a direct sale of 55 acres (22 hectares) to the Raiders for more than $6 million _ half the land's appraised value. The city is using a Nevada law that allows for no-bid sales at under-market prices when they are considered to be in the public interest.

"This is an opportunity to take the city of Henderson to a new level," Assistant City Manager Greg Blackburn said during the city council meeting ahead of the resolution vote. "It's hard to put a dollar value to what this does to help us for the future."

The Raiders have promised that the venue will create an estimated 250 full-time jobs not counting players. The team will spend about $75 million to build the complex.

The team wants to kick off its 2020 season at a 65,000-seat domed stadium built partially with taxpayers' money across the freeway from the Las Vegas Strip. The team in May paid $77.5 million for the 62-acre (25-hectare) site and hosted a glitzy groundbreaking ceremony in November.

Guests of hotels and other lodging facilities in the Las Vegas area are contributing $750 million to the project through a room tax increase. The Raiders and the NFL are expected to contribute $500 million to the project, while the team has also secured a $600 million bank loan for construction.

Henderson's city council must vote again next month to give final approval to the offer.

Henderson officials said the city will benefit from property taxes collected on the land and additional spending from visitors and team clients. City staff said similar projects have created an estimated $210 million tax impact over a decade after the venues are fully built.

Not all residents were supportive of the city's decision.

"The Raiders have been gypsies over the years, starting in Oakland, then moving to El Segundo (LA) for a few years, then back to Oakland and now Las Vegas. Where to next?" Henderson resident Adrian Woodhouse wrote the city council in an email.

On Wednesday, commissioners in Clark County approved a development agreement with the team that spells out public safety and infrastructure improvements in and around the Raiders stadium.

The agreement calls for widening sidewalks, improving roadways, installing and modifying traffic signals, and building any needed pedestrian bridges.

The team agreed to install about $1.4 million worth of public safety equipment at the stadium and an emergency operations center. The document outlining the development agreement did not include a finalized plan for the thousands of county-mandated parking spaces.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Bay Area

Photo Credit: NBCBayArea.com]]>
<![CDATA[Meier Achieves a Career First as Sharks Dominate Canadiens]]>Tue, 02 Jan 2018 21:26:26 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/meier-sharks-win-usatsi.jpg

Timo Meier scored two goals in a game for the first time in his NHL career, and the San Jose Sharks opened 2018 with a 4-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens.

Joe Thornton and Montreal native Marc-Edouard Vlasic also scored for San Jose. Goaltender Aaron Dell won his sixth consecutive start, and the Sharks improved to 1-1-0 on their six-game road trip.

Meier's now scored four goals in his last five games, and eight on the season. Three of his 11 career goals have come at the Bell Center.

The Sharks continue their road trip Thursday in Toronto against the Maple Leafs, and San Jose all-time leading scorer Patrick Marleau.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Demolished in Dallas to Close Out 2017]]>Sun, 31 Dec 2017 19:46:44 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-lose-ap.jpg

Logan Couture returned from a concussion, but that was just about the only positive for the San Jose Sharks in a 6-0 loss to the Dallas Stars on New Year's Eve.

Martin Jones allowed four goals on 24 shots, and Aaron Dell replaced him in net after 40 minutes. San Jose failed to score on the power play, ending their season-long streak at nine games. The Sharks have now allowed five or more goals in three of their last four trips to Dallas, and are 0-4 over that span.

The Stars won for the fourth time in their last five games. John Klingberg, Tyler Pitlick, Stephen Johns, Tyler Seguin, and Devin Shore scored for Dallas.

The Sharks next head north of their border to continue their five-game road trip on Tuesday against the Montreal Canadiens.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[49ers End Season With Fifth Straight Victory]]>Sun, 31 Dec 2017 17:12:02 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/175*120/nynerzzramzz.jpg

It was a tale of two teams for the San Francisco 49ers in 2017. There was pre-Jimmy and post-Jimmy. The Jimmy experience gives the 49ers a sweet feeling heading into 2010.

On Sunday, the 49ers beat the Rams at the Los Angeles Coliseum, 34-13, to finish the schedule with their fifth straight win and sixth in seven games. The 49ers started the season 0-9, but were a different team completely after acquiring quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo from the Patriots in a trade on Oct. 30. Garoppolo took over for rookie C.J. Beathard to start against the Chicago Bears on Dec. 3, and the Niners went on a roll, knocking off the Bears, Texans, Titans, Jaguars and Rams.

On Sunday in Los Angeles, Garoppolo wasn’t as sharp as he has been in most games, yet he still completed 20-of-33 throws for 292 yards and two touchdowns with two interceptions.

So the 49ers end their season 6-10, exactly the same as their cross-bay cousins, the Oakland Raiders, who began the season with Super Bowl hopes.

The 49ers now enter the offseason with the quarterback they’ve been seeking for several years, some bright young talent – such as linebacker Reuben Foster, defensive linemen DeForest Buckner, Solomon Thomas and Arik Armstead, cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon and tight end George Kittle – plus plenty of room under the salary cap in 2018 to go after free-agent help.

If general manager John Lynch again has a productive offseason, the 49ers will go into the 2018 season with expectations they can make a move in the NFC West.

That’s a huge change in direction from the way the 49ers appeared in September, October and November.

On Sunday at the L.A. Coliseum, Garoppolo got plenty of help, with running backs Carlos Hyde (90 yards, two TDs) and Matt Breida (72 yards) having strong games, Kittle pulling in four passes for 100 yards and the defense holding the Rams – playing without some key starters before the playoffs – to 251 total yards.

As Cam Inman of the Bay Area News Group noted, the season-ending win was a great cap to the season for rookie head coach Kyle Shanahan. The turnaround from 0-9 to 6-10 was “remarkable,” he wrote.

Added Inman: “As a result, this was the 49ers first finale since 2013 that didn’t mark the end of a head coach’s tenure.”

Now, the 49ers can continue to build and start dreaming of 2018.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Del Rio Fired by Davis After Raiders' Loss to Chargers]]>Sun, 31 Dec 2017 23:37:11 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/del+rio2.jpg

Jack Del Rio's run with the Raiders is over after three years.

Raiders owner Mark Davis informed Del Rio after Sunday's 30-10 loss to the Chargers that he has been fired as head coach.

"It was an honor for me to coach this team...this is a results based business," Del Rio told the media.

The news of Del Rio's firing comes a day after a report surfaced that the Raiders are planning to make a lucrative offer to former head coach and current ESPN analyst Jon Gruden.

In three seasons with the Raiders, Del Rio compiled a 25-23 record. After leading Oakland to the playoffs last season, expectations for the Raiders were sky-high. But their loss on Sunday in Los Angeles capped off a disappointing 6-10 season.

Coming off last year's success, Del Rio signed a four-year contract extension in February.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders' Brutal Season Comes to Merciful End]]>Sun, 31 Dec 2017 17:16:10 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/boltzzwinn.jpg

The Raiders had a couple of positives on Sunday. The crowd at the Home Depot Center in Carson was filled with fans in silver and black – making Oakland feel at home before the kickoff – and Derek Carr connected with Amari Cooper on an 87-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter.

Other than that, however, it was just more of the same from a 2017 season steeped in disappointment.

The Raiders fell to the Chargers in the final game of the season, 30-10, to wind up 6-10. It was a punch in the gut for a franchise coming off a 12-4 year in 2016 and billed as a Super Bowl contender. The team was plagued by injuries – its top two draft picks barely played – Carr took a huge step back, the offense was pedestrian under a new offensive coordinator (who will soon be the old offensive coordinator), the defense didn’t come alive until Ken Norton Jr. was fired and now head coach Jack Del Rio appears to be on the hot seat, with rumors Jon Gruden could replace him.

The season is over, but the offseason promises to be eventful. There is much to address.

On Sunday, the Raiders took an early lead, 10-7, on Cooper’s long TD play and Giorgio Tavecchio’s 40-yard field goal in the second period, then watched as Philip Rivers and the Chargers took over. Rivers threw two TD passes before the half, then the Chargers added a field goal and another Rivers scoring toss in the third quarter to put the final nails in the Raiders coffin for a season long since declared dead.

The Raiders pass defense was picked apart by Rivers, who completed 28-of-37 throws for 387 yards, three TDs and no interceptions.

Carr, meanwhile, was 19-of-28 for 243 yards, with one TD and one interception and a lost fumble.

Running back Marshawn Lynch carried 19 times for 101 yards, and Cooper had three catches for 115 yards.

Let the changes begin.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Finish on Low Note With Blowout Loss to Chargers]]>Sun, 31 Dec 2017 16:35:20 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/raiders-carr2.jpg

CARSON – Melvin Gordon slashed through the Raiders defensive front and into the second level. Safety Reggie Nelson, met the Chargers running back, reached in and pulled the ball out. It hung in the air a moment, before Keenan Allen snatched it at a full sprint and ran into the end zone.

A promising play went down in flames. Sounds a lot like the Raiders season, which mercifully ended with Sunday’s 30-10 loss to the Chargers at StubHub Center.

So much optimism, so hope went unfulfilled on Sunday, and over the last 17 weeks. A team expected to challenge for AFC supremacy finished an uninspired 6-10 and, after last year’s step forward, the Raiders have taken giant leaps back.

There’ll be hell to pay for that.

Heads are gonna roll from the roster and coaching staff. At this stage it’s a matter of who and when, not if. And, of course, whether Jon Gruden becomes available.

This game was prelude to all that. We could go into greater detail about this latest defeat but, honestly now, how much do you care about Sunday’s action?

Not much, I’m sure.

No jobs were saved. None were lost those four quarters. Owner Mark Davis and general manager Reggie McKenzie will evaluate an entire season’s body of work. Sunday’s game is but one piece of a larger puzzle.

Coaches should know their fate soon. Players without guaranteed contracts in 2018 may have to wait a little longer, but it’s fair to expect a shakeup on the depth chart as the Raiders look for upgrades.

That’s mandatory following a season of disappointment. The offense stunk. The defense improved down the stretch, but never to the point it could win a game itself.

The magic and clutch performance under pressure that defined last year’s 12-4 campaign vanished save one comeback against Kansas City.

They had a chance to control their own destiny in Week 14 at Arrowhead Stadium and lost every game after. They didn’t deserve to be in the playoff hunt then, and deservedly fell off the map this winter.

The Raiders finished with a whimper, unable to generate consistent offense when it mattered most or create a major impact on defense.

This game was inconsequential, but serves as one final reminder that changes are required to get this team back on track.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[TCU Rallies to Beat Stanford in the Alamo Bowl]]>Thu, 28 Dec 2017 23:50:57 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/stanford-love-1228.jpg

Kenny Hill passed for two touchdowns, ran for another and even caught one as No. 13 TCU rallied from a big early deficit to beat 15th-ranked Stanford 39-37 in the Alamo Bowl on Thursday night.

Cole Bunce's 33-yard field goal with just over 3 minutes to play won it for the Horned Frogs (11-3), who trailed 21-3 before storming back behind big plays from Hill and a 76-yard punt return from Desmon White. TCU rallied from 31 down in to beat Oregon in the 2015 Alamo Bowl.

Stanford (9-5) running back Bryce Love, a Heisman Trophy finalist, rushed for 145 yards and had a 69-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. K.J. Costello had three touchdown passes to J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, the last one giving Stanford a 37-36 lead.

Hill then drove TCU to Bunce's game winner. The Horned Frogs defense sealed it with an interception by Innis Gaines with 2:01 left.

Hill finished with 314 yards passing, a team-high 60 yards rushing and caught a 27-yard TD pass from White in his final game.

Love finished with the season with 2,118 yards rushing, the school's single-season record.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Bay Area

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Prove Too Hot for the Flames to Handle]]>Fri, 29 Dec 2017 00:20:51 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharkspostgame1.jpg


Joonas Donskoi scored the winning goal in a shootout, and the San Jose Sharks rallied to beat the Calgary Flames 3-2 on Thursday.

The Sharks were stymied for most of the night by Flames goalie David Rittich, but they got a late goal in the third period on Timo Meier's re-directed shot.

Joe Pavelski, who scored San Jose's first goal, got the puck past Rittich in the first round of the shootout. After Calgary missed its first two attempts, Donskoi deked Rittich and then wrapped a shot around the goalie for the game-winner.

Martin Jones made 32 saves for San Jose.

Both teams missed multiple scoring chances in the extra period, including a one-timer by Calgary's TJ Brodie that was stopped by Jones.

Rittich made 30 saves in his fourth career start. Mikael Backlund and Garnet Hathaway scored for the Flames, and Jaromir Jagr took another step toward breaking Gordie Howe's record for games.

Calgary lost for the first time this season when leading after two periods.

Jagr entered early in the first period, tying Ron Francis for third place on the NHL's games played list with 1,731. Jagr, who played 13 minutes, turns 46 in February and needs 37 games to break Gordie Howe's record of 1,767.

Hathaway took advantage when the Sharks had trouble clearing the puck from in front of the net and tapped in his second goal of the season to put Calgary up 1-0 early in the first period.

After Pavelski tied it with a power-play goal, Backlund re-directed a power-play shot by Tkachuk past Jones to make it 2-1 Flames at 15:45 of the first.

NOTES: Pavelski's goal was his 200th since 2011-12, fourth-most in the NHL during that time. ... Jagr had missed the previous two games with a lower-body injury. ... The Sharks have scored at least one power-play goal in nine consecutive games. ... Sharks C Logan Couture missed his fourth straight game because of a concussion, but is making progress and took part in the morning skate before the decision was made to hold him out. ... Rittich made his NHL debut in San Jose in the final regular-season game last year.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Tune Out Jazz in Third Quarter, Roll to Blowout Win]]>Wed, 27 Dec 2017 22:42:46 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/durant-jazz-usatsi.jpg

OAKLAND -- After a sluggish first half, the Warriors rediscovered their third-quarter magic Wednesday night and it was enough to carry them to a 126-101 rout of the Jazz at Oracle Arena.

Six players scored in double figures, with Kevin Durant’s 21 points leading the parade. Pat McCaw had a season-high 18 points, Nick Young and Klay Thompson had 15 apiece, Draymond Green 14 and Omri Casspi had 10.

Winning for the 13th time in 14 games, the Warriors (28-7) outscored Utah 42-22 in the third quarter, the fifth time this season they’ve outscored an opponent by at least 20 in the third.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Several Warriors responded to the halftime wakeup call, including Andre Iguodala, Jordan Bell and McCaw. Durant was primary catalyst, though, playing all 12 minutes in the third and posting a plus-21 for the quarter.

Durant’s line: 21 points (7-of-10 shooting from the field, including 2-of-3 from deep, 5-of-5 from the line), six rebounds, four assists and three blocks. He played 29 minutes and finished plus-23.

TURNING POINT: After a Derrick Favors jump hook brought the Jazz within one, 62-61, with 6:55 left in the third quarter, the Warriors put together a 15-2 run, taking a 77-63 lead on a dunk by Durant with 3:35 left in the quarter.

The Warriors shot 73.9 percent (17-of-23) in the third quarter, while holding the Jazz to 37.5 percent (9-of-24).

The Warriors pushed the lead 21 (90-69) by the end of the quarter and Utah got no closer than 20 in the fourth.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: G Stephen Curry (R ankle sprain) was listed as out. F Omri Casspi left late in the game with an apparent right ankle injury.

Jazz: G Dante Exum (L shoulder surgery), C Rudy Gobert (L knee sprain, bone bruise) and G Raul Neto (concussion protocol) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Friday night, when they face the Charlotte Hornets at Oracle Arena. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Lose Ugly in Philadelphia]]>Mon, 25 Dec 2017 21:22:18 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-898617218.jpg

The Raiders are hobbling toward the finish of this 2017 season.

A season that began with great hopes continues to get worse. On Monday night in Philadelphia, the Raiders fell again, 19-10, to the Eagles. With one game remaining, Oakland is now 6-9 with three straight losses.

In this one, the Raiders had one last chance to pull it out. With a little over a minute remaining from their own 46 with the score tied 10-10, Derek Carr was intercepted at the Eagles 48. From there, Philadelphia marched efficiently down to the Oakland 31, from where Jake Elliott drilled a 48-yard field goal with 27 seconds left for the 13-10 lead.

One last Raiders possession couldn’t produce anything, and on the final play, a bad lateral attempt by Raiders’ receiver Amari Cooper to Jalen Richard was recovered by the Eagles and returned for a touchdown to end the game.

While the Raiders defense played well, the Oakland offense floundered. The Raiders turned the ball over four times in the second half, two on Carr interceptions, and Carr completed just 15-of-29 throws for 40 yards.

The Eagles improve to 13-2 and clinched home-field advantage through the playoffs.

The Raiders will finish their season this coming Sunday in Carson when they take on the host Los Angeles Chargers.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Derek Carr, Raiders Offense Gift Eagles a Win]]>Mon, 25 Dec 2017 21:43:26 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/CARR-RAIDERS-1225.jpg

PHILADELPHIA – The Raiders had nothing to play for Monday night. They were formally eliminated from playoff contention Sunday afternoon, leaving just two games to wrap an incredibly disappointing season.

Effort never waned against the Eagles, though the Raiders played like a team that doesn’t belong in the postseason.

Offense is to blame for the season going so far south, and was the problem yet again on Christmas night. That unit was awful, and the passing game in particular was ugly as ever against the Eagles.

Defense kept the Raiders in it with one stop after another.

The offensive gave this one away, and was responsible for a 19-10 loss at Lincoln Financial Field.

Quarterback Derek Carr’s second interception was a back breaker, giving the Eagles possession near midfield with less than a minute to go. Philadelphia worked into field goal range and Jake Elliott converted from 48 yards out with 22 seconds left.

There was no late-game magic in that unit, which could move an inch with the game on the line. The offense turned it over four times in the second half, including the final play with the Eagles returning a fumble for a touchdown.

The Raiders ran well against the NFL’s best rushing defense, with 137 yards on 33 carries. Marshawn Lynch paced that effort, with 94 yards and was the team’s steadiest offensive presence.

The passing game, however, was completely out of sync. Protection was suspect. Receivers weren’t getting much separation.

Carr couldn’t find a rhythm, wasn’t terribly accurate and made some poor decisions one of his worst games this season. He completed 15-of-29 passes for 147 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions. He also lost a fumble at the end.

Most of his yards came from one pass.

Amari Cooper scored the Raiders’ first touchdown on a 63-yard reception from Carr. Cooper ran a slant and go route, and Eagles cornerback Jalen Mills bit hard on the first half on a double move.

Cooper was wide open for a relatively easy touchdown.

The Raiders struggled to sustain drives, as they have all season, but found themselves in the driver’s season down the stretch.

Defense maintained firm control over an Eagles offensive far more explosive with Carson Wentz under center. He’s out with a torn ACL, leaving backup Nick Foles to captain the ship. Raiders fans will remember him for seven touchdown passes at Oakland Coliseum in 2013, but he was far less effective this time around.

Offensive play was truly offensive in the third quarter, with three turnovers in four plays. Carr threw an interception. Jay Ajayi lost a fumble to plays later and then Marshawn Lynch coughed it up on the next play.

The Eagles only got a field goal from that exchange well into Raiders territory, securing a 10-10 tie heading into the fourth quarter.

The Eagles broke it late, but it wasn’t the defense’s fault. This “L” falls on the offense.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Hold off Cavs in Thrilling Christmas Day Trilogy]]>Mon, 25 Dec 2017 20:47:58 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/warriors-1225.jpg

OAKLAND -- The Warriors spent most of Christmas Day at Oracle Arena doing just enough to keep the Cavaliers in the game. And it almost cost them.

But Klay Thompson scored the last seven points of the game, providing the Warriors with the margin in a 99-92 win over their Eastern Conference rival.

Thompson finished with 24 points, while Kevin Durant totaled a team-high 25 and Draymond Green added 12 as the Warriors (27-7) held on down the stretch.

The Cavaliers (24-10) stayed close throughout, thanks to solid 3-point shooting (15-of-36) and 20 points scored off 15 Warriors turnovers.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Thompson made the big shots. Durant protected the rim like a beast. But Andre Iguodala, who has not been his usual impactful self for much of this season, was as much of a difference-maker on both ends as anyone.

Iguodala’s line: 9 points (4-of-8 shooting from the field, 0-of-4 from deep, 1-of-2 from the line), six rebounds, one assist and one block. He played 24 minutes off the bench and finished a team-best plus-12.

TURNING POINT: The Warriors never led by as much as 10, but the Cavaliers never went away, tying it at 92-92 on a LeBron James jumper with 1:59 remaining.

But the Warriors forced a turnover and a miss on the next two possessions, allowing Thompson to put things away of a 3-pointer with 1:33 remaining a four free throws inside the final minute.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: G Shaun Livingston (R knee soreness), F/C Kevon Looney (gluteal strain) and C Zaza Pachulia (L shoulder soreness) were listed as probable and upgraded to available prior to tipoff. G Stephen Curry (sprained right ankle) was listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Cavaliers: G Derrick Rose (L ankle sprain), G Iman Shumpert (L knee surgery) and G Isaiah Thomas (R hip labrum tear) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to the court Wednesday night, when they face the Utah Jazz at Oracle Arena. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Labanc Lifts Sharks Over Canucks in Overtime]]>Thu, 21 Dec 2017 23:23:15 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-1221.jpg

SAN JOSE -- Kevin Labanc scored 1:53 into overtime and the San Jose Sharks beat the Vancouver Canucks 5-4 on Thursday night.

Labanc also had three assists as the Sharks improved to 4-1-2 over their last seven games. Joe Thornton scored twice for San Jose and added an assist as he moved past Doug Gilmour for 18th place on the NHL list with 1,416 career points.

Labanc's fourth goal of the season came off an assist from Tomas Hertl.

The Canucks lost for the sixth time in seven games, with their lone win during that span against San Jose on Dec. 15.

Vancouver trailed 4-3 before Daniel Sedin scored at 2:09 of the third period to tie it. The Canucks rallied from a 3-1 deficit.

Jake Virtanen scored to bring Vancouver within a goal at 8:49 of the second, and Brock Boeser tied the game at 16:02.

Boeser's goal was his 19th of the season and eighth in 11 games.

Hertl scored for San Jose on a 5-on-3 power play with 1:04 left in the second to give the Sharks a 4-3 lead.

San Jose trailed 1-0 before Thornton tied Gilmour with a goal at 11:52 of the first period. The Sharks took a 2-1 lead at 5:20 of the second when Timo Meier scored his fifth goal.

Brendan Gaunce scored the game's first goal at 1:58 of the first period on a play Jake Virtanen started with a backhand pass to trailer Erik Gudbranson. He fired a shot that Gaunce redirected for his first goal of the season.

Late in the first period, defenseman Michael De Zotto saved a goal when he cleared a puck that got past goalie Jacob Markstrom inches from the net.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Thomson Propels Shorthanded Warriors to 10th Straight Win]]>Wed, 20 Dec 2017 22:29:38 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/175*120/warriors-1220.jpg

OAKLAND -- Riding the scorching shooting of Klay Thompson and relying on defense late, the Warriors won their 10th consecutive game, grinding out a 97-84 win over the Grizzlies on Wednesday night at Oracle Arena.

Thompson scored 29 points -- 27 in the first half -- to lead the offense. Kevin Durant finished with 22 points and Omri Casspi totaled 12.

The Warriors (25-6) held Memphis to 33.3-percent shooting -- 29.5 percent after the first quarter -- to become the fourth team in NBA history to post win streaks of at least 10 games in five consecutive seasons.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Thompson carried the Warriors the first half, when they needed to be carried, making his first nine shots from the field before getting limited touches in the second half and cooling off.

Thompson’s line: 29 points (10-of-16 from the field, including 3-of-4 from beyond the arc, 6-of-6 from the line), five assists, two rebounds and two steals. He played 37 minutes and was a team-best plus-17.

TURNING POINT: After a Deyonta Davis dunk gave the Grizzlies a 28-18 lead with 1:40 remaining in the first quarter, the Warriors responded with a 17-4 run, taking a 35-32 lead on a short jump shot by Omri Casspi with 8:35 left in the second quarter.

The Warriors pushed the lead as high as 10 (52-42) before taking a 56-51 lead at halftime.

The Warriors led throughout the second half, with Memphis getting as close as four (78-74) with 9:22 remaining before the Warriors pulled away.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: F Andre Iguodala (flu) was listed as questionable and downgraded to out prior to tipoff. F Draymond Green (R shoulder soreness) and C Zaza Pachulia (L shoulder soreness) were listed as doubtful and downgraded to out prior to tipoff. G Stephen Curry (R ankle sprain) and G Shaun Livingston (L knee soreness) were listed as out.

Grizzlies: G Mike Conley (L Achilles soreness), F Chandler Parsons (rest), F Wayne Selden Jr. (R quad tendinopathy) and F Brandan Wright (R groin strain) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action on Friday night, when they face the Los Angeles Lakers at Oracle Arena. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Report: Raiders' Smith to Stand Trial for Felony Assault]]>Wed, 20 Dec 2017 18:05:01 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/282*120/smith-sean-raiders-black.jpg

Raiders cornerback Sean Smith will stand trial on charges felony assault and battery stemming from a July 4 incident in Pasadena involving his sister's ex-boyfriend.

A Los Angeles Superior Court judge decided in a Tuesday preliminary hearing there was enough evidence to proceed to trial, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Smith will be arraigned on Jan. 3, a few days after the Raiders' regular-season finale against the Chargers. If convicted, he could face a maximum of seven years in prison.

Two witnesses identified Smith as a man who stomped Christopher Woods' head in the Old Town neighborhood of Pasadena.

According to the L.A. Times, Woods had a metal plate installed under his right eye and had surgery to repair five facial fractures. Woods also tore a knee ligament and testified to having blurry vision. He also said he will need more surgery.

Smith has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Woods has also reportedly filed a civil suit against Smith and his employer, the Oakland Raiders, seeking damages. The Raiders are accused of training Smith to "injure and disable" people.

Smith will have two years left on a four-year, $38 million contract signed during the 2016 offseason. He's scheduled to make $8.25 million base salary, though he has no guaranteed money left in the deal. The Raiders could release him without dead money against the salary cap.

Smith has 28 tackles, four passes defensed and a team-high two interceptions. He struggled to start the year, but has played far better in the second half.

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[49ers Receive Just One 2018 NFL Pro Bowl Selection]]>Tue, 19 Dec 2017 19:28:01 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/Kyle+Juszczyk.jpg

The 4-10 49ers are sending just one player to Orlando for the 2018 NFL Pro Bowl.

Fullback Kyle Juszczyk, in his first season with the 49ers, was selected to his second straight Pro Bowl on Tuesday. He went as a member of the Ravens last season.

In 12 games, Juszczyk has seven carries for 31 yards and 24 receptions for 220 yards and one touchdown.

In fan voting released by the league on Saturday, Juszczyk finished first among all fullbacks by a wide margin. Juszczyk received 361,196 votes. Jacksonville Jaguars fullback Tommy Bohanon was second with 139,297 votes.

In addition to Juszczyk, four 49ers players were selected as alternates for the Pro Bowl: Ol Trent Brown, K Robbie Gould, RB Carlos Hyde and T Joe Staley.

The Pro Bowl will take place on Sunday, Jan. 28, 2018.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Four Raiders Selected to 2018 NFL Pro Bowl]]>Tue, 19 Dec 2017 19:07:51 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/hudson-osemele-ap.jpg

ALAMEDA – The Raiders had seven players make the Pro Bowl in honor of last year's 12-4 season.

To the victor, as the cliché goes, go the spoils.

That's definitely true in a breakout year. After that, respect carries some weight in all-star voting. That's how the Raiders got four guys into the annual exhibition, which will be played on Jan. 28 in Orlando.

The Raiders list features edge rusher Khalil Mack and offensive linemen Donald Penn, Kelechi Osemele and Rodney Hudson.

The Mack selection was a given. The reigning NFL defensive player of the year has 10.5 sacks with two games remaining, and has 71 total quarterback pressures. He's also considered one of the NFL's best run defenders, someone who commands respect with double teams and sometimes more off the edge.

The Raiders blocking trio made the Pro Bowl for a second straight year.

Hudson may be the league's best center, and is certainly deserving of this honor. Osemele was dominant yet again, and is widely respected for his physicality, pass protection and run blocking. A rusher's sweet spot is between Osemele and Penn, who man the line's left side. Penn allowed four sacks this season and was somewhat inconsistent at the start, but closed with his best football before getting hurt Sunday against Dallas.

The Raiders also have six alternates in line to take a Pro Bowl spot should any first-ballot players bow out, an annual postseason tradition among stars around the NFL. Linebacker NaVorro Bowman, quarterback Derek Carr, kick returner Cordarrelle Patterson, offensive lineman Gabe Jackson, running back Marshawn Lynch and punter Marquette King are alternates for this year's game. 

King was the biggest surprise omission from the first ballot. He won the fan vote by a decent sum, but Tennessee's Brett Kern, who sports the NFL's highest net punt average, was the AFC's representative. 

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Spoil Kobe's Big Night to Extend Win Streak to 9]]>Tue, 19 Dec 2017 00:05:39 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/warriors-1218.jpg

For the second time this season, the Lakers took the Warriors into overtime in Los Angeles. For the second time, the Warriors squeaked out a victory.

Kevin Durant scored 36 points, including 12 in OT, and the game-winning shot with 6.4 seconds left, to lead the Warriors to a 116-114 victory Monday night that extended their win streak to nine.

Klay Thompson scored 17 points, Omri Casspi had 14 and Nick Young added 10 as the Warriors pushed their record to 24-6 on the night the Lakers had a lavish ceremony for the retirement of Kobe Bryant’s jersey numbers, 8 and 24.

STANDOUT PERFORMERS: Durant offset a poor shooting night with late heroics, while Andre Iguodala spent the evening doing things that kept the Warriors from falling apart.

Durant’s line: 36 points (10-of-29 from the field, including 4-of-11 from deep, 12-13 from the line), 11 rebounds, eight assists and three blocks. He played 41 minutes and finished plus-1.

Iguodala’s line: 9 points (4-of-7 from the field, 1-of-2 from deep), eight assists, four rebounds and two steals. He played 37 minutes and finished plus-19.

TURNING POINT: The teams exchanged leads 12 times, including twice in OT, before Durant drilled his game-winner.

The teams were locked a tight duel throughout, with neither able to build more than a seven-point lead in the second half. The Warriors were up 91-84 with 9:53 left before the Lakers closed regulation with an 18-11 rush to force OT.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: G Stephen Curry (R ankle sprain), F Draymond Green (R shoulder soreness), G Shaun Livingston (L knee soreness) and C Zaza Pachulia (L shoulder soreness) were listed as out.

Lakers: No injuries listed.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Wednesday night, when they face the Memphis Grizzlies at Oracle Arena. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks' Rally Falls Short in Bid for Revenge vs. Oilers]]>Mon, 18 Dec 2017 23:10:28 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/hertl-sharks-postgame-usatsi.jpg


EDMONTON - Ryan Strome scored twice to lead the Edmonton Oilers to a 5-3 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Monday night for their second straight win.

Mark Letestu, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Patrick Maroon also scored for the Oilers, who have consecutive wins for just the third time this season. Leon Draisaitl had two assists and Cam Talbot stopped 18 shots.

Joe Pavelski, Tomas Hertl and Marcus Sorensen had goals for the Sharks, losers of two straight. Martin Jones finished with 24 saves.

With the score tied 1-1, Strome gave the Oilers the lead for good with 1:09 remaining in the first period. Draisaitl made a perfect pass across to Strome to give him a wide-open net to deposit the puck into. It was It was the 10,000th goal in the Oilers' franchise history.

Edmonton made it 3-1 at 6:36 of the second as Nugent-Hopkins' pass hit Pavelski's stick and got past Jones for his 14th.

San Jose got that goal right back, however, as Hertl's shot got past Talbot for his eighth at 8:32.

Maroon's ninth of the season restored the Oilers' two-goal edge at 8:23 of the third.

San Jose kept coming and pulled to 4-3 as Sorensen made a nice deke and scored his second with 8:02 to go.

However, Strome sealed the win with an empty-netter with 8 seconds left.

San Jose started the scoring on the power play at 6:15 of the first as Pavelski swooped in to put a rebound past Talbot for his seventh.

Letestu beat Jones with a one-timer shortly after an Oilers power play expired to tie the game with 5:18 left in the first.

NOTES: It was the first of four meetings between the teams this season. Edmonton was 3-1-1 against San Jose last season, and went on to beat the Sharks in six games in the first round of the playoffs. ... The Sharks were without C Logan Couture, who suffered a concussion in Friday's game against Vancouver. San Jose did get a player back, though, as F Mikkel Boedker returned after missing seven games with a lower-body injury. ... The Oilers had D Adam Larsson back after missing eight games with an upper-body injury.


Sharks: Host Vancouver on Thursday night.

Oilers: Host St. Louis on Thursday night.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Fuming From First Down Call Affirmed by Index Card]]>Mon, 18 Dec 2017 17:10:12 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/first-down-us.jpg

OAKLAND – The Raiders' 20-17 loss to the Dallas Cowboys Sunday night swung on a fourth-quarter, fourth-down measurement so close a result was hard to determine.

Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott's sneak on 4th-and-inches didn't get far, and possession wasn't perceptible right away. Officials brought first-down markers to midfield for a measurement with five minutes left in the game.

A Cowboys first down was awarded. Eventually. Officials took a long look at the ball in relation to the sticks, and then used a folded index card as part of their decision.

Referee Gene Steratore told a pool reporter after the game that the card wasn't part of the original decision.

"That was already finished," Steratore said. "The ball was touching the pole. I put the card in there and as soon as it touched, it was nothing more than a reaffirmation. The decision was made based on my visual from the top looking down and the ball touching the front of the pole."

Steratore was asked why the card was used at all, and Steratore reiterated that the card did not make the judgment. Steratore had not used a card before, even as affirmation for a first-down decision.

"It's maybe been done at some point in someone's career but I didn't use the card for my decision," Steratore said. "I used my visual looking at the ball reaching the pole."

If all that sounds confusing, it should. It certainly was for the Raiders, who lost a golden opportunity to win a game. Dan Bailey's 19-yard field goal concluded that drive and created the final margin for victory.

The Raiders had an opportunity to win the game later in the fourth quarter, but quarterback Derek Carr fumbled through the end zone trying to cross the goal line and win the game with 30 second left, which is a turnover and a touchback by rule.

That swing first-down decision, however, really stuck with the Raiders after the game.

"I don't want to get fined, okay?" Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio said. "I'm not happy with the way things were done…(I've) never seen air like that and have it somehow turn into a first down. There was air between the ball and the stick. That's short. The ball goes the other way. Period."

Raiders middle linebacker NaVorro Bowman was in the thick of things, and was flummoxed by the spot, the decision and that Dallas was awarded a first down he doesn't believe it earned.

"If you could be in the circle and see where that ball was, I don't see how they got that," Bowman said. "For them to pull that paper out to solidify the first down? There was space between the ball and the sticks. I just don't know."

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders' Hopes are Fumbled Away]]>Sun, 17 Dec 2017 21:16:59 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/daktdtd.jpg

For a moment, it looked as if Derek Carr had won the game. Instead, it was a heartbreaking loss for the Raiders.

On Sunday night, with just 39 seconds left, Carr – who had marched the Raiders to the 8-yard line of the Dallas Cowboys – scrambled away from defenders and dived to the goal-line. It appeared Carr had scored a touchdown, but he lost control of the ball and it rolled through and out of the end zone. Officials ruled it a touchback – which was then held up by replay review – and the Cowboys ran out the clock to hang on to a 20-17 decision over Oakland.

The clock also ran out on the Raiders, who fall to 6-8 with the loss with just two games remaining and their hopes for a second straight playoff appearance as good as dead.

Dallas had gone up by three points on its previous possession, kicking a field goal after keeping a drive alive by the thickness of a piece of paper – literally – as measured by the officials.

Carr then took his team from its own 11 to the Cowboys’ 8, aided by a 55-yard gain on a pass-interference penalty on fourth-and-10 from the Oakland 30. It appeared the Raiders would at least get a field goal to tie up the game and send it to overtime, but Carr’s fumble put an end to their night.

Carr was 21-of-38 for 171 yards and two touchdowns, and Marshawn Lynch had 76 yards rushing on 16 carries. On defense, cornerback Sean Smith had two interceptions of Cowboys QB Dak Prescott.

The Raiders now trail the AFC West-leading Chiefs (8-6) and second-place Chargers (7-7), with the Eagles up next on Christmas night.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Carr Goes For it All, Final-Minute Fumble Dooms Raiders]]>Sun, 17 Dec 2017 21:06:48 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/raiders-1217.jpg

OAKLAND – The Raiders have taken first-round uppercuts several times this season. They typically have a glass jaw, dropping without much resistance or ability to recover.

That happened at Washington, against Baltimore, New England and last week’s gotta-have-it game at Kansas City.

Dallas delivered another haymaker Sunday night. This time, in a virtual elimination game for both teams, the Raiders didn’t drop.

The Raiders bit and scratched and scrapped and clawed back from a double-digit deficit, and were within field goal range when a random rule ended an unlikely comeback try.

The Raiders were down three points with roughly 30 seconds left when quarterback Derek Carr took off running on 3rd and 3 from the Cowboys’ 8-yard line and dove for the goal line. He got hit during the dive and lost control, fumbling the ball through the end zone.

By rule, that’s a touchback.

It was confirmed upon review. The Raiders lost 20-17 on Sunday night at Oakland Coliseum, taking playoff hopes down with them.

Carr’s effort gone awry ended a crazy game full of ups, downs and wild rulings.

The Raiders needed help to reach the playoffs and didn’t get much from the weekend slate, but aid only gains power with Raiders victories. They didn’t uphold their end, falling to 6-8 and well behind in the AFC wild card hunt. They technically aren’t eliminated, but it’s virtually certain their season ends with the regular season.

Carr’s gutsy play for the end zone decided the game, but it swung on a 4th-and-inches near the Dallas’ 40 midway through the fourth quarter, when Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott’s sneak was so close officials had to slide a folded piece of paper between the ball and the first-down marker to determine the result.

It was called a first down, Dallas. That, and a 40-yard reception by Dez Bryant paved the way for a Dan Bailey’s deciding 19-yard field goal.

Carr’s passing totals weren’t pretty and he was anything but perfect, but he got by. This ranks among the grittiest performances of his career. That stands, even in a losing effort.

He found a way to make plays, often throwing off balance, on the run or while being tackled. He kept the ball moving and the Raiders alive after a terrible start for the entire offense. He ended up with 218 total yards, and needed but a few more to complete a comeback.

He fell just short going for the end zone.

Running back Marsahwn Lynch was equally tough, with 76 yards on 16 carries, and a significant portion after contact.

Carr’s second touchdown pass to Michael Crabtree tied it 17-17 early in the fourth quarter, completing a 10-play, 53-yard drive. Dak Prescott’s 5-yard touchdown run came a series prior, making the response vital to the Raiders’ efforts.

The Raiders were shut out in the first half for the fourth time this season – the fourth time! – and hit halftime down 10-0, though it could’ve been a little better. Smith’s first interception cut off a strong Cowboys drive. Then a controversial offensive pass interference call negated a Raiders touchdown and Giorgio Tavecchio missed a 39-yard field foal attempt to close the half.

A foot injury removed left tackle Donald Penn early on, but the offensive line held tough. Right tackle Marshall Newhouse took over Penn’s spot and Vadal Alexander filled switch’s vacancy, but didn’t miss much.

That was important as the Raiders mounted a third-quarter comeback. It momentarily seemed like a lead, when Smith returned his second pick for a touchdown. He was ruled down at the 22-yard line upon review; the offense couldn’t move and left with a field goal.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Could Warriors' Steph Curry Buy the Panthers? 'I Want In!']]>Sun, 17 Dec 2017 20:37:56 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/steph-panthers-us.jpg

The Carolina Panthers will soon be for sale. After allegations of workplace minconduct recently surfaced, Panthers owner Jerry Richardson announced Sunday night that he plans to put the team up for sale

It looks like Steph Curry wants to be more than just a fan of his hometown team. 

The Warriors' star was responding to Sean "Diddy" Combs saying he wants to buy the team. 

Diddy responded to Curry, looking to make a partnership on the Panthers.

Curry grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina, when his father played shooting guard for the Hornets. He's frequently at Panthers games whenever he gets a chance. 

When the Panthers played the Broncos in Super Bowl 50 at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Curry was awarded with his own custom Panthers jersey and he banged the team drum before kickoff. 

Richardson was awarded the Panthers in 1993. The team played their first season in 1995. 

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Meet 2018 Winter Olympic Hopeful Elena Hight]]>Fri, 15 Dec 2017 19:16:40 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-887950868.jpg

Elena Hight moved to Lake Tahoe from Hawaii when she was six, so snow was new to her.

Acrobatics, weren't however.

Her parents tell her she was jumping off everything by the age of two. And now, after a big setback, Hight is hoping to jump back into the games.

“My mom says that I was a piece of work,” Hight said during a recent interview with NBC Bay Area in Lake Tahoe. “When I was very young, I started walking – I want to say eight months – and I started jumping off everything when I was two years old. My mom said I was such a liability, and yeah I guess I was just kind of a daredevil from day one.”

Daredevil … or Olympian.

Sometimes, it’s hard to tell one from the other.

Or perhaps, like Hight, it takes one to be the other.

The 28-year-old South Lake Tahoe native’s high flying acrobatics have landed her in two winter games.

In 2006, at just 16, Hight was the youngest member of the U.S. team.

In 2010 she was back, and it looked like her future in the sport was set for years to come.

But then, 2014 rolled around.

"I didn't make the team in 2014. It was a really tough year for me and, yeah, I don't know, sometimes things just don't work out the way you expect them to,” Hight said.

After so much success in the sport, Hight was forced to face up to not succeeding.

It knocked her down, she admits, but not out.

“Even though I had this huge failure that really was hard on me and it kind of felt like it was the end all be all at the time, when I got over it I realized that I still loved snowboarding for all the reasons I loved it in the beginning,” Hight said. “I'm still so passionate about it – I didn't want to give that up just because I failed once.”

So Hight is back, gunning for 2018.

She’s looking back on both ups and downs: “I would say that if you're paying attention you learn from both.”


2010 Olympic Winter Games, 10th place
2006 Olympic Winter Games, 6th place

Career Highlights:
2013, World Cup Sochi, 9th place
2013, X Games Tignes, silver medalist
2013, X Games Aspen, silver medalist
2012, World Championships, 6th place
2012, X Games Tignes, silver medalist
2012, X Games Aspen, silver medalist
2012, U.S. Grand Prix Mammoth Mountain, 1st place
2012, U.S. Open, 1st place
2010, U.S. Grand Prix Mammoth Mountain, 2nd place

Photo Credit: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images, File]]>
<![CDATA[Learning From Success And Failure: After Setback, Elena Hight Sets Sights On 3rd Olympics]]>Fri, 15 Dec 2017 18:52:56 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/KNTV_100000001709609_1200x675_1116664899837.jpg

Not making the 2014 United States Olympic Team was a real blow to Elena Hight. It knocked her down, she says. But not out. Garvin Thomas reports.]]>
<![CDATA[Durant, Warriors Beat Mavericks Running Away]]>Thu, 14 Dec 2017 23:40:37 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/durant-postgame-warriors.jpg

OAKLAND -- Aches and pains may nag at the Warriors, but they have not derailed them. That much was evident once again Thursday night, when they ran off with a 112-97 victory over the Mavericks at Oracle Arena.

Kevin Durant scored a game-high 36 points, Klay Thompson tossed in 25 and Omri Casspi put in 17 as the Warriors (23-6) won their eighth consecutive game.

The Warriors shot 60.3 percent from the field and 50-percent from beyond the arc as they once again prevailed with three starters -- Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Zaza Pachulia -- sidelined by injuries.

STANDOUT PERFORMER(S): This was a Durant-Thompson production, with Durant doing the heavy lifting for three quarters and Thompson arriving in the fourth to close it out.

Durant’s line: 36 points (15-of-23 shooting from the field, 4-of-8 from deep, 2-of-2 from the line), 11 rebounds, seven assists and two blocks. He played 34 minutes and finished plus-14.

Thompson’s line: 25 points (10-of-18 shooting, including 5-of-5 from deep) and five rebounds. He played 37 minutes and finished plus-20.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Monday night in Los Angeles, where they face the Lakers at Staples Center on Kobe Bryant Double Jersey Retirement Night. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Open Road Trip With Win Thanks to Late Heroics]]>Thu, 14 Dec 2017 20:45:46 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-win-usatsi1.jpg

In his first game since November 28, Joonas Donskoi played the hero. The Finnish winger scored the game-winning goal with 2:48 remaining, and the Sharks opened their three-game road trip with a 3-2 win over the Calgary Flames.

Chris Tierney and Timo Meier each scored a goal and an assist. Donskoi also assisted on Meier's goal, his second multi-point game of the season.

Calgary captalized on a Tim Heed turnover 4:42 into the first period, and Michael Frolik's unassisted effort gave the Flames a 1-0 lead. Another turnover led to the Flames' second, as Marc-Edouard Vlasic couldn't keep the puck in the offensive zone and Johnny Gaudreau scored a tap-in off of the ensuing rush to tie the game at two.

San Jose's road trip continues against the Canucks Friday night in Vancouver.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Role Players Step Up, Lead Shorthanded Warriors Past Blazers]]>Mon, 11 Dec 2017 23:28:40 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/david-west-dunk-blazers-usatsi.jpg

OAKLAND -- Using most of the same primary ingredient that created an undefeated six-game road trip, the Warriors returned to Oracle Arena Monday night and hung on for a 111-104 win over the Trail Blazers.

Kevin Durant led the Warriors in scoring for the third consecutive game, totaling 28 points. Klay Thompson had 24 points, Nick Young 12, Jordan Bell and Omri Casspi 11 each.

Once again, the Warriors (22-6) rode their defense, holding Portland to 42-percent shooting from the field, including 33.3 percent in the defining third quarter.

Damian Lillard scored a game-high 39 points to lead Portland (13-13), which lost its fifth consecutive game.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: On a night when most everybody made a positive contribution, no one among the Warriors was more essential than Durant.

Durant’s line: 28 points (11-of-21 from the field, including 2-of-4 from beyond the arc, 4-of-4 from the line), nine rebounds, five assists and three blocks. He played 36 minutes and finished plus-8.

Bell, who started in place of Draymond Green (a late scratch), also shined, totaling 11 points (5-of-6 shooting from the field, 1-of-2 from the line), six rebounds, two assists and one block. He played 26 minutes and finished a team-best plus-14.

TURNING POINT: After Jake Layman made a pair of free throws to tie the score at 32-32, with 10:07 left in the second quarter, the Warriors responded with an 18-6 run to take a 50-38 lead with 3:15 left in the half.

The Warriors limited the Blazers to 2-of-11 shooting (18.2 percent), with four turnovers, during that stretch.

Though the Warriors led by as much as 24 in the second half, the Blazers got within seven in the final seconds.

INJURY UPDATE: WARRIORS: F Draymond Green (R shoulder soreness) was listed as probable and downgraded to out. G Pat McCaw (concussion, nose contusion) was listed as questionable and upgraded to available. G Stephen Curry (R ankle sprain) and C Zaza Pachulia (L shoulder soreness) were listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

BLAZERS: F Maurice Harkless (L quad soreness) and C Jusuf Nurkic (R ankle sprain) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Thursday night, when they face the Dallas Mavericks at Oracle Arena. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Comeback Falls Short in Wild Loss to Minnesota]]>Sun, 10 Dec 2017 23:13:26 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/wild_beat_sharks_usatsi1.jpg

Nino Niederreiter scored 3:26 into overtime and the Minnesota Wild beat the San Jose Sharks 4-3 on Sunday night after squandering a three-goal lead.

Eric Staal scored twice and Ryan Murphy added a goal as the Wild extended their winning streak over the Sharks to four games.

Tomas Hertl tapped in a loose puck for San Jose with five minutes left in regulation to tie it at 3.

Hertl's goal followed a furious Sharks attack that Wild goalie Alex Stalock was able to fend off until a shot from Dylan DeMelo bounced off his shoulder pads and into no man's land just above the crease.

Brent Burns scored twice for the Sharks, who had won five of seven.

Stalock made 31 saves in his first appearance against his former team. Martin Jones stopped 20 shots for the Sharks.

The Wild, winners in four of their last five games, scored twice in the first 10 minutes. A series of sharp passes set up Murphy for a power-play goal just more than four minutes in. Staal sent a pass to Jason Zucker behind the net and he found Murphy for a 1-on-1 score.

Staal's first goal came after Ryan Suter recognized an advantage when Burns ran into Jones, knocking him off his feet. Suter delivered a pass to Staal, who easily fired it over Jones.

Early in the second period, Staal was able to push the puck through Jones' skates for a 3-0 Wild lead.

Burns got the Sharks on the scoreboard with a power-play goal during a two-man advantage late in the second period. Burns scored again on a power play with a slap shot from just inside the blue line midway through the third, his 12th multi-goal game.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Complete Crazy Comeback Against 'Canes]]>Thu, 07 Dec 2017 23:49:31 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks_beat_canes_ap_.jpg


SAN JOSE -- Brett Burns scored 22 seconds into overtime to lift the San Jose Sharks over the Carolina Hurricanes 5-4 on Thursday night.

Barclay Goodrow scored a short-handed goal with just over eight minutes to play in regulation to tie it at 4, capping the Sharks' rally from a three-goal deficit.

Logan Couture scored on a power play three minutes earlier. Melker Karlsson also scored a short-handed goal and Joe Thornton had a power-play goal to move into 19th place on the career points list at 1,409.

Sebastian Aho scored twice within a five-minute span of the first period, Victor Rask also scored during that stretch and the Hurricanes took a 3-0 edge. Jeff Skinner also scored for the Hurricanes, who have lost three of four.

Martin Jones stopped 21 shots for the Sharks. Cam Ward had 28 saves for Carolina.

The Hurricanes scored three times within 5:13 in the first period, eliciting scattered boos from the crowd. Aho scored twice, sandwiched around Rask's score.

The Sharks got one back on Karlsson's goal before Skinner made it 4-1. Thornton's power-play goal brought the Sharks within 4-2 entering the final period.

NOTES: Sharks D Brendan Dillon served his one-game suspension for a slash against Washington. ... Sharks D Paul Martin was on the ice for the first time since Oct. 7 due to injury. ... D Tim Heed missed his fifth game with an upper-body injury. ... The Hurricanes have been outscored 11-3 in the second period in their past eight games. ... Thornton's power-play goal ended Carolina's streak of 24 straight penalty kills against the Sharks dating to 2012. ... Hurricanes C Derek Ryan appeared in his 100th NHL contest.


Hurricanes: Play at the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday, the third of six straight on the road.

Sharks: Host the Ottawa Senators on Saturday.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Durant's Triple-Double Powers Warriors Past Hornets]]>Wed, 06 Dec 2017 20:45:19 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/184*120/warriors-1206.jpg

With Stephen Curry and Draymond Green sidelined, Kevin Durant delivered the goods Wednesday night to give the Warriors their fifth consecutive victory.

Durant posted his second triple-double as a Warrior, with 35 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in a 101-87 win over the Hornets at Spectrum Center in Charlotte.

Klay Thompson tossed in 22 points and Nick Young added 10 off the bench as the Warriors held Charlotte to 35.1-percent shooting to improve their record to 20-6 with the wire-to-wire victory.

The Warriors are one win away from the first undefeated six-game road trip in franchise history.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: With Curry and Green sideline, and Zaza Pachulia leaving early, Durant took on the challenge of leading the way. He was nothing short of magnificent.

Durant’s line: a season-high 35 points (13-of-28 from the field, including 3-of-10 from beyond the arc, 6-of-6 from the line), 11 rebounds, 10 assists and two blocks. He played 36 minutes and finished plus-7.

TURNING POINT: The Warriors took control early, leading for most of the first quarter and breaking away in the second.

When Charlotte pulled with eight, 28-20, on a layup by guard Michael Carter-Williams with 10:44 left in the second quarter, the Warriors responded with a 12-0 run, going up 40-20 on a dunk by Andre Iguodala with 7:24 left in the half.

The Hornets got no closer than seven (87-80, 5:46 remaining) in the second half.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: C Zaza Pachulia (L shoulder soreness) was upgraded to available prior to tipoff, but aggravated the injury and exited with 7:29 remaining in the first quarter. F Draymond Green (R shoulder soreness) was listed as questionable and declared out prior to tipoff. G Stephen Curry (R ankle sprain) and G Pat McCaw (nose contusion) were listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Hornets: No injuries were listed.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Friday night in Detroit, where they face the Pistons at Little Caesars Arena. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 3 p.m., with tipoff scheduled for 4:05.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Curry Hurts Ankle in Warriors' Comeback Win Over Pelicans]]>Mon, 04 Dec 2017 22:25:25 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/curry-trainer-ap.jpg

It has become formula, the Warriors falling behind early only to catch up and win going away, and it worked once more Monday night in New Orleans.

The defending champions overcame a 20-point halftime deficit to the beat the Pelicans 125-115 at Smoothie King Center.

Stephen Curry totaled a team-high 31 points, but left the game in the final minute after rolling his right ankle. He walked to the locker room on his own power and did not return. After the game, the team diagnosed Curry with a right ankle sprain.

X-rays came back negative, and Curry was seen leaving the locker room on crutches.

Klay Thompson tossing in 22 and Kevin Durant and Draymond Green adding 19 apiece.

The Warriors (19-6) have won four straight games, all on the current road trip.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: No one was more important to this win than Green, who scattered his statistics all over the box score.

Green’s line: 19 points (6-of-12 shooting from the field, including 3-of-5 from beyond the arc, 4-of-5 from the line), nine rebounds, seven assists, four steals and two blocked shots. He played 38 minutes and was a team-best plus-27.

OF NOTE: Prior to injurying his ankle, Curry made five 3-pointers, raising his career 3-pointers total to 2,000 and becoming the eighth player to reach that milestone -- and the fastest to ever do so. Curry has played 597 games in his career.

TURNING POINT: Listless for much of the first half and trailing 69-49, the Warriors opened the second half with a 27-9 run to pull within two, 78-76, with 4:24 left in the third quarter.

That put them back in the game, whence the maintained the pressure, taking their first lead of the second half, 96-95, on an Andre Iguodala dunk with 8:31 remaining.

The Warriors closed with a 18-5 run over the final 3:33.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: G Stephen Curry (R hand contusion) and F Andre Iguodala (L knee soreness) were listed as probable and upgraded to available prior to tipoff. C Zaza Pachulia (L shoulder soreness) was listed as questionable and downgraded to out prior to tipoff. Curry sustained a right ankle sprain in the final minute, left the game and did not return. G Patrick McCaw (bloody nose) left the game in the first half and did not return. G Shaun Livingston was out, serving a one-game suspension. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Pelicans: C Alexis Ajinca (R knee injury), F Anthony Davis (L adductor strain), F Solomon Hill (L hamstring tear) and G Frank Jackson (R foot fracture) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to the court Wednesday at Charlotte, where they face the Hornets at Spectrum Center. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 4 p.m., with tipoff scheduled at 5:05.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks End Road Trip With Loss to Capitals]]>Mon, 04 Dec 2017 19:52:49 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-postgame.jpg


WASHINGTON - Alex Ovechkin scored his NHL-leading 20th goal and assisted on another, helping the Washington Capitals snap their recent run of futility against the San Jose Sharks with a 4-1 victory Monday night.

The Capitals beat the Sharks for the fourth time in 18 meetings since Ovechkin entered the league in 2005-06. It's just Washington's second regulation win against San Jose in that time and first since Oct. 15, 2009. It ended a four-game skid in the series.

Halting the Sharks' recent mastery came at a cost: T.J. Oshie left in the second period with an upper-body injury and didn't return. As Oshie was already engaged with Logan Couture and falling down along the boards, he took Joe Thornton's backside to the head.

Tom Wilson took exception to Thornton's hit and fought him in the third period of a chippy game that also included a fight between Alex Chiasson and Barclay Goodrow.

Before those tensions rose, Ovechkin continued his climb up the career list with his 578th goal, passing Hall of Famer Mark Recchi for 20th. He's the 11th player in NHL history to score at least 20 goals in each of his first 13 seasons.

Ovechkin, who rooted for the Sharks while growing up in Moscow, turned several defenders inside out and made a perfect pass to set up Brett Connolly's power-play goal. Devante Smith-Pelly and Jakub Vrana also scored for Washington, which has won two in a row and six of eight.

Capitals backup goaltender Philipp Grubauer made 24 saves to pick up his first career victory against the Sharks. San Jose's Martin Jones allowed four goals on 29 shots in his second game back from injury, and Timo Meier scored his first goal in eight games and third of the season.

NOTES: Connolly has goals in back-to-back games since returning from being a healthy scratch for the previous two. ... Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said D Paul Martin is close to returning from an undisclosed injury that has kept him out since Oct. 12. ... Capitals F Travis Boyd made his NHL debut, replacing Chandler Stephenson, who's day-to-day with an upper-body injury. ... F Andre Burakovsky rejoined the Capitals for their morning skate as he works back from October surgery to repair his broken left thumb. He hopes to return within the next week.


Sharks: Return home to face the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday night.

Capitals: Host the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday night.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Report: Giants' Christian Arroyo Proposed in Stanton Deal]]>Mon, 04 Dec 2017 16:32:00 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/arroyo-usatsi.jpg

Several Giants top prospects have been mention in reported trade proposals with the Marlins for reigning NL MVP Giancarlo Stanton.

But a new name emerged on Monday afternoon.

Infielder Christian Arroyo, who two years ago was the Giants' No. 1 rated prospect according to Baseball America, is reportedly in a proposed deal between the Giants and Marlins, according to SiriusXM radio host Craig Mish.

According to Mish, second basemen Joe Panik and Dee Gordon are not part of any proposed deal.

Other names that have been reportedly linked to a possible Stanton deal are RHP Tyler Beede, LF Chris Shaw, OF Heliot Ramos and C Aramis Garcia.

Arroyo broke through to the majors this past season, but struggled and was sent back to the minors. Hand injuries plagued him for the remainder of the 2017 season.

In 34 games for the Giants, Arroyo hit .192/.244/.304 with five doubles, three home runs and 14 RBI.

The Giants and Cardinals both reportedly have the "general framework" of a deal with the Marlins for Stanton. Both teams are now waiting on Stanton to waive his full no-trade clause.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Mack and the Raiders Defense are Building Momentum]]>Mon, 04 Dec 2017 08:29:15 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/raiddddduo.jpg

The Raiders’ reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year had perhaps his best game of the season Sunday in Oakland’s 24-17 victory over the New York Giants.

In fact, it feels as if defensive end Khalil Mack is just now starting to get his season rolling into high gear over the past three games.

In the win over the Giants, Mack had a sack of quarterback Geno Smith in which he pulled the ball away for a turnover in the red zone, a play that proved crucial in the victory. He also had sacks in the two previous games against the Broncos and Patriots.

Raiders linebacker NaVorro Bowman said Mack’s strip sack of Smith was an enormous play, with New York having marched to the Oakland 4 yard line.

“That’s just the motor,” Bowman said of Mack, according to Curtis Pashelka of the Bay Area News Group. “If you go back to the beginning of that play and you see the get-off, that’s really what got him there so fast and Geno didn’t expect him to get there that fast. I saw the ball loose, and it was him being instinctual. ... Grabbing that ball was a huge play for us.”

Over the past two games, new defensive coordinator John Pagano has been using Mack a bit differently, moving him around the defensive front to create new  matchups and pressures on blocking schemes. The analytic website Pro Football Focus noted that Mack’s performance Sunday was one of the most dominant defensive efforts in the entire league, calling him “unblockable.” PFF noted Mack had 11 pressures and a sack in 30 pass-rush snaps. He had a hit and nine hurries among those pressures. He was the top-graded Raider by PFF. “Just another ultra-productive performance from Mack,” wrote PFF.

Mack doesn’t have gaudy sack stats this season. He has 7½ sacks, far behind NFL leader DeMarcus Lawrence of the Cowboys, who has 13½. But he’s a force in both the running and passing games and perhaps the NFL’s best edge defender.

After being sacked Sunday by Mack and linebacker Bruce Irvin (who also forced a fumble), the Giants’ Smith tipped his hat to them.

“Two of the best in the game, two of the best pass rushers,” Smith told reporters. “They really got after it today. Khalil made two good plays on me. I wish I could have those back.”

The Raiders, now in a three-way tie atop the AFC West at 6-6, travel to Kansas City Sunday to take on the 6-6 Chiefs. Kickoff is set for 10 a.m. in the Bay Area.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Curry Torches Heat, Warriors Win 3rd Straight Road Game]]>Sun, 03 Dec 2017 20:41:17 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/warriorswin3.jpg

Stephen Curry did most of the heavy lifting, scoring a game-high 30 points Sunday night to carry the Warriors to a 123-95 rout of the Heat at American Airlines Arena in Miami.

Kevin Durant put in 24 points, Klay Thompson 19 and Omri Casspi added 10 off the bench as the Warriors won their third straight game on the road trip.

After a relatively sluggish start, allowing 36 first-quarter points, the Warriors (18-6) limited the Heat to 59 points on 38.3-percent shooting over the final three quarters.

The Warriors (18-6) committed a season-low-tying 10 turnovers.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Maybe it was the South Beach air, but several Warriors shook off slow starts before settling in. Curry, by contrast, appeared to be operating on a full eight hours of sleep and did not seem bothered by his tender right ring finger.

Curry’s line: 30 points (11-of-16 from the field, including 5-of-9 from deep, 3-of-4 from the line), three assists, two rebounds and two steals. He played 30 minutes and finished plus-20.

TURNING POINT: After going into halftime with a 62-60 lead, the Warriors took command when opening the third quarter with an 18-3 run to forge an 80-63 lead on a Curry layup with 7:20 left in the third.

The Heat got no closer than 14 in the third quarter and no closer than 24 in the fourth, as the Warriors led by as much as 33.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: G Stephen Curry (R hand contusion) and F Kevin Durant (R ankle sprain) were upgraded to available after the morning shootaround. F Andre Iguodala (L knee soreness) was listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Heat: G Rodney McGruder (L tibia surgery), F Okaro White (L foot surgery) and C Hassan Whiteside (L knee bone bruise) were listed as out.

WHAT'S NEXT: The Warriors return to the court Monday night, when they face the New Orleans Pelicans at Smoothie King Center. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 4:00, with tipoff scheduled for 5:05.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Beat Giants to Climb into Tie for Division Lead]]>Sun, 03 Dec 2017 17:07:40 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/raidgianttzz.jpg

Welcome to the wild, wild AFC West, where the Raiders are now in a three-way tie for the lead at 6-6.

The Raiders beat the visiting New York Giants Sunday, 24-17, getting great contributions from Derek Carr, Marshawn Lynch, Cordarelle Patterson and Khalil Mack. Meanwhile the Kansas City Chiefs – after starting the season 5-1 – lost to the New York Jets to fall to 6-6, and the Los Angeles Chargers beat the Cleveland Browns.

With four games remaining, the Raiders – who at one point lost four straight and six of eight – have now won two consecutive games and can control their destiny. Oakland travels to Kansas City to play the Chiefs next Sunday and will finish the season with a game against the Chargers. Both the Chiefs and Chargers hold the tiebreaker over Oakland with victories in their first matchups.

The Raiders started with a bang, scoring on their first possession on Lynch’s breakaway 51-yard touchdown run on a third-and-1 play.

After the Jets tied it 7-7, Giorgio Tavechhio’s 39-yard field goal gave Oakland a 10-7 lead at halftime. After a scoreless third period, the Raiders went up 17-7 on DeAndre Washington’s 9-yard run. The Giants rebounded with Evan Engram’s 10-yard TD pass from Geno Smith, but the Raiders responded immediately. On the first play of their next possession, Carr connected on a screen to Patterson for 59 yards that set up a 9-yard TD pass to Johnny Holton and a 24-14 lead.

The Giants were able to march to a field goal to cut the margin to 24-17 with just over a minute and a half left in the game, but Oakland recovered the onside kick and then ran out the clock for the win.

Lynch had another big game for the Raiders, rushing for 101 yards and adding 20 yards on two catches. Carr completed 22-of-36 throws for 287 yards. Wideouts Seth Roberts, Patterson and Holton stepped up – in the absence of Michael Crabtree and Amari Cooper – to combine for 12 catches for 182 yards and a TD.

On defense, Mack had a strip sack in the red zone to stop one Giants scoring threat and linebacker NaVorro Bowman and defensive back Keith McGill had fumble recoveries as well.  Mack, Bruce Irvin and Denico Autry had sacks.

With the loss, the Giants fall to 2-10.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Report: Giants Execs Meeting With Stanton Representatives]]>Thu, 30 Nov 2017 23:36:30 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/stanton-ap-pav.jpg

SAN FRANCISCO -- After a slow week, the Giants appear to be making some strides in their bid to put Giancarlo Stanton in orange and black. 

According to Craig Mish, a SiriusXM host based in South Florida, Giants executives were in Los Angeles on Thursday to meet with Stanton's representatives from the Wasserman Media Group. 

The Giants have been forceful in their pursuit of Stanton throughout the offseason, but any meeting would represent a breakthrough and perhaps a sign that the Marlins are finally ready to swing a deal. Stanton has a full no-trade clause, but the Giants have gone through this process believing that he would ultimately waive it to come to San Francisco, and it appears they're getting a chance to make their case. 

For his part, Stanton has not commented publicly about his preferences, although it's believed that the Los Angeles native would prefer to be close to home, with the Dodgers rumored to be his first choice. 

Photo Credit: Alex Pavlovic]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Escape LA With OT Win Over Lakers]]>Wed, 29 Nov 2017 23:56:42 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/160*120/warriors-1129.jpg

After sleepwalking through most of regulation Wednesday night in Los Angeles, the Warriors snapped awake in overtime and snatched 127-123 win over the Lakers.

Stephen Curry, playing with a bandaged right hand, struggled with his shot most of the night but scored 11 of his 26 points in the extra period.

Kevin Durant scored a team-high 29 points, Klay Thompson put in 20, Draymond Green 15 and Zaza Pachulia 11 as the Warriors shot an even 50 percent from the field.

The Warriors (16-6) for the second consecutive game allowed an opponent to shoot better than 49 percent. LA shot 49. 5 percent. Through the Warriors first 20 games, no team reached that level.

STANDOUT PERFORMERS: This was a Curry/Durant production.

Curry’s line: 26 points (9-of-20 from the field, 3-of-5 from deep, 5-of-6 from the line), seven assists and five rebounds. He played 37 minutes and finished plus-4.

Durant’s line: 29 points (12-of-25 shooting, including 3-of-7 from deep, 2-of-4 from the line), seven rebounds and five assists. He played 34 minutes and finished plus-8.

TURNING POINT: Curry opened the OT period with back-to-back 3-pointers in the first 58 seconds, giving the Warriors a 115-109 lead and forcing the Lakers to call a timeout.

The Warriors never again lost the lead, with the Lakers getting as close as 1 (124-123) inside the final minute of OT.

INJURY REPORT: Warriors: G Stephen Curry (R hand bruise) and F Kevin Durant (L ankle sprain) were listed as probable and upgraded to available prior to tipoff. C David West (L knee lateral soreness) was listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Lakers: No injuries were listed in the afternoon. F Kyle Kuzma strained his back during pregame warmups and was declared out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to the court Friday in Orlando, where they face the Magic at Amway Center. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 3 p.m., with tipoff scheduled for 4:05.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[49ers Will Scale Back Game Plan With Garoppolo at the Helm]]>Wed, 29 Nov 2017 19:20:58 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/49ers_garoppolo_1129_933757.JPG

Jimmy Garoppolo is nowhere close to learning the entire 49ers’ offense.

But as he takes over as the 49ers' starter Sunday against the Chicago Bears, Garoppolo does not have to be comfortable with the entire breadth of coach Kyle Shanahan’s system.

“When you go into the week with him as the starter, the playbook is this week,” Shanahan said on Wednesday, one day after he informed Garoppolo and C.J. Beathard of his decision to make a change at quarterback.

“It’s not a big inventory of our training camp and OTAs. What’s our game plan to beat Chicago? We put that in all Monday night and Tuesday with the idea that we were going to go with Jimmy. This game plan is for Jimmy and he’ll work at it all week.”

Shanahan will meet with Garoppolo late in the week to solidify the call sheet for Sunday's game, he said.

"Whatever he doesn’t feel comfortable with and doesn’t get down in these three practices, then we’ll take it out," Shanahan said. "Whatever we go with on Sunday, he’ll know 100 percent of it."

Garoppolo, who arrived at 49ers headquarters on Oct. 31 after being acquired in a trade with the New England Patriots, is balancing his studies this week to learn the 49ers’ game plan making his first start this season while also gaining and understanding of the Bears’ defense.

“That’s been the tricky part the last couple of weeks,” Garoppolo said. “I’ve kind of gotten in to a little bit of a routine with that. I know I was the backup the last couple of weeks, but you still prepare like you’re the starter. Learning the other team’s defenses. Watching as much film as you can. There are still things we put in I’ll learn for the first time. That part of the learning curve, I’m pretty comfortable with now. I got a nice routine for it.”

Part of Garoppolo's routine will consist of meeting with center Daniel Kilgore to go through the 49ers’ different protections so they are working on the same page on Sunday. Kilgore realizes he must take on more responsibility with a quarterback who is still figuring out the team’s offense.

“He’s been in a complex offense before,” Kilgore said. “He knows how to study. He backed up Tom Brady, one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game. I would say he feels much more comfortable since Day 1. How much more comfortable is he?

“Out of 10, he’s anywhere from a 6 to 7, from what I see. He just has to go out on Sunday and have fun.”

Beathard is still nursing a left knee bruise and a hip strain. He is not scheduled to practice on Wednesday. Shanahan said he is optimistic Beathard will practice Thursday and Friday and be available to serve as Garoppolo’s backup on Sunday.

If Beathard is unable to suit up, the 49ers would likely promote undrafted rookie quarterback Nick Mullens from the practice squad.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Open Road Trip With Dominant Win Over Flyers]]>Tue, 28 Nov 2017 23:25:22 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks_flyers_usatsi.jpg


PHILADELPHIA -- The boos picked up steam in the second period. The "Fire Hakstol" chants became louder in the third.

When the Philadelphia Flyers' ugly 3-1 loss to the San Jose Sharks was over Tuesday night, players held a closed-door meeting, general manager Ron Hextall was insisting they're still a playoff team and coach Dave Hakstol was shaking off calls for his job.

Mired in a nine-game losing streak - its longest skid in nearly in 10 years - things are getting ugly in Philadelphia.

"Nobody said this was going to be easy," Hakstol said. "If you don't want to be in this spot, it's a choice. That's how I react to it. There are high expectations in this market."

Joe Thornton scored the go-ahead goal late in the first period, Chris Tierney and Marc-Edouard Vlasic also scored and Logan Couture had two assists for the Sharks, who kicked off a four-game trip with their second straight win.

"The toughest game is always the first one," Thornton said. "Three-hour time change, you get here late, dinner late, everything is kind of off. So this first game is huge for us."

Claude Giroux scored 48 seconds in before the Flyers were blanked the rest of the way by backup Aaron Dell, who made 22 saves.

"They can chant whatever they want. We're in this together," Giroux said of his coach. "We're all in the same boat here. It's not on him, it's on everybody."

Thanks to blown leads and overtime and shootout defeats, Flyers are 0-4-5 since their last win, Nov. 9 against Chicago. It's the longest streak since an 0-8-2 stretch in February 2008.

After a players-only meeting postgame, Hextall addressed reporters.

"If we were playing poorly, I'd be the first to say, `We're playing poorly.' I would be," he said. "We're not playing poorly. To look objectively at our team right now and to say we're playing poorly, no. Are we shooting ourselves in the foot at times? Yes, we are. Critical mistakes at critical times, yes."

San Jose was without top goaltender Martin Jones, who sustained an unspecified injury near the end of his shutout of Winnipeg on Saturday. Jones traveled and is expected to play on the trip.

After Giroux's 11th goal, Dell looked sharp. Tierney tied it from the right circle at 10:29, and then Thornton's 5-on-3 goal with 1:18 left in the first period put the Sharks ahead 2-1.

Vlasic scored with 3:56 left in the second period as the Sharks improved to 6-2-1 on the road.

"Our style is good for the road, but I think our style is good for wherever we are playing," Vlasic said.

It marked the seventh time in nine games the Flyers have blown a lead during their skid. And undisciplined play continues to be a problem.

Philadelphia took three penalties in 3 minutes late in the first period. Then while trailing 2-1, the Flyers went on the power play early in the second period, only to have it negated 9 seconds later when Jakub Voracek tripped Tomas Hertl.

On the second day of a back-to-back, backup Michal Neuvirth made 31 saves for the Flyers, who showed little energy in the third period. They had just one shot on goal until Hakstol pulled Neuvirth for an extra attacker with about 3 minutes left.

"I don't have answers for you," Giroux said.

The Sharks earned a split in the season series after losing on opening night to the Flyers 5-3 behind Wayne Simmonds' hat trick. Simmonds has scored just four goals in 24 games since.

"We get booed every once in a while," said Simmons, who took two penalties. "But when we're getting booed the whole game, it's pretty embarrassing."

NOTES: Sharks F Joonas Donskoi left in the second period with an injury. . Sharks C Melker Karlsson (upper body) returned after a four-game absence and played on the fourth line. . Flyers D Radko Gudas served the sixth game of his 10-game suspension for slashing.

The Sharks play at Florida on Friday.

The Flyers host Boston on Saturday before a three-game trip to western Canada next week.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders WR Michael Crabtree's Suspension Reduced by NFL]]>Tue, 28 Nov 2017 18:07:17 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/crabtree-raiders-ap.jpg

Michael Crabtree will in fact be eligible to play Dec. 10 against the Chiefs after the league reduced his suspension on Tuesday.

Broncos CB Aqib Talib also had his suspension reduced to one game by the league.

Crabtree and Talib were both suspended two games without pay on Monday for their roles in a brawl between the Raiders and Broncos on Sunday.

The Raiders' wide receiver will sit out Sunday's game against the New York Giants.

The news was first reported by ESPN.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[49ers Announce QB Jimmy Garoppolo Will Start Against Bears]]>Tue, 28 Nov 2017 15:32:13 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/49ers-garoppolo-1128.jpg

Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is scheduled to take the first-team practice snaps at practice Wednesday and make his first start for the 49ers on Sunday.

Coach Kyle Shanahan made the announcement that Garoppolo will start against the Chicago Bears. Garoppolo grew up in Arlington Heights, Illinois, approximately 30 miles from Soldier Field.

Rookie C.J. Beathard, who started the 49ers’ previous five games, sustained a knee contusion and hip strain late in Sunday’s game upon taking a low hit from Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett. It is uncertain whether Beathard will be fully cleared to practice this week.

On Monday, Shanahan said he wanted his starting quarterback to be identified before Wednesday’s practice because both players needed as much preparation time as possible.

“One is a rookie quarterback and the other one basically is also, with him just being here,” Shanahan said. “To give those guys the best chance to be successful, you want to give them all the reps, which still isn't enough reps. Any time you split those evenly, it's kind of a disservice to both.”

Garoppolo arrived at 49ers headquarters on Oct. 31 after the team acquired him in a trade with the New England Patriots for a second-round draft pick.

Garoppolo made just two starts in his 3 ½ seasons with the Patriots. On Sunday, he entered for the final three plays of the 49ers’ 24-13 loss to Seattle. He scrambled for 4 yards; completed an 8-yard pass to Aldrick Robinson on a fourth-and-6 play; then found Louis Murphy for a 10-yard touchdown pass.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[NFL Suspends Michael Crabtree and Aqib Talib for Brawl]]>Mon, 27 Nov 2017 23:22:22 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/talib-crab-ap.jpg

ALAMEDA – Aqib Talib was completely unprovoked in ripping a gold chain off Michael Crabtree nearly 11 months ago. There was no warning, no history, no beef.

Crabtree didn't retaliate in that game, saying he made a "business decision." An AFC West title on the line, and a playoff game. Crabtree knew the Raiders couldn't afford to play without him in that game or the future.

That same thought didn't prevail Sunday afternoon. Crabtree put on a chain before Sunday's game between the Raiders and Broncos, the first time he and Talib would share a field since the original incident. He taped it to his body, according to ESPN.

That report suggests Crabtree knew trouble was brewing. He had plenty of time to consider another business decision. He didn't make the same choice.

Crabtree seemed to punch cornerback Chris Harris Jr. in the gut to start the Raiders' second drive. The Broncos cornerback took exception.

Crabtree was lined up with Talib on the next play. They locked horns, and then things got out of control. Talib ripped Crabtree's chain again. This time, the veteran receiver didn't hold back. He drove Talib into the ground, and a brawl broke out. Punches were thrown, helmets were ripped off and facemasks were grabbed.

Both guys were ejected on Sunday. That wasn't enough for the NFL. The league suspended Crabtree and Talib two games without pay for the altercation.

Crabtree will appeal the suspension, a league source said.

Player and team will be punished serverely if he serves the full term.

The Raiders wouldn't have their most reliable receiver next week against the New York Giants or in a Dec. 10 contest at AFC-West leading Kansas City. Both are must-win games as the Raiders attempt a late-season playoff push. His absence would be magnified if Amari Cooper can't clear the concussion protocol and rebound from a ankle injury posthaste.

Crabtree will lose significant funds during a suspension without pay. He'll forfeit $735,294 before taxes in base salary if he's gone two games, $367,647 if he only misses one. Those totals don't include per-game roster bonuses which, per overthecap.com, total $31,250 a game.

That's a hefty sum to be sure.

Head coach Jack Del Rio said before punishment was levied that Crabtree didn't deserve further punishment. He reiterated that stance on social media Monday night.

"Hard to understand the reasoning for this judgementbased on most recent ruling w/altercation," Del Rio wrote on Twitter. "See WR Cin and DB Jak = 0 games suspended."

Del Rio is referring to Cincinnati receiver A.J. Green and Jacksonville cornerback Jalen Ramsey, who were only fined after a Nov. 5 altercation where Green choked his foil and punches were thrown.

That will certainly be addressed in Crabtree's appeal. So will the fact Crabtree already missed most of one game. A two-game suspension would essentially be three games out. There's no precedent for that.

That NFL was bothered by this feud's history, though it didn't penalize, suspend or fine Talib for the original chain-ripping incident.

The league came down hard this time, as NFL VP of football operations Jon Runyan expressed in letters written to both players.

"Such actions have no place in this game," he said, "engender ill will between teams, and lead to further confrontations."

PROGRAMMING NOTE: Tune into Scott Bair's Raiders Update on Tuesday at 3pm streaming live on Facebook and NBCSportsBayArea.com.

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Without Curry and Durant, Warriors Shocked by Kings]]>Mon, 27 Nov 2017 22:24:01 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/warriors+skal-dunk.jpg

OAKLAND -- The Warriors stumbled and staggered and eventually they fell, taking a stunning 110-106 loss to the Sacramento Kings on Monday night at Oracle Arena.

Klay Thompson scored a team-high 21 points to lead the offense. Pat McCaw put in a season-high 16 points, while Draymond Green had 14, Andre Iguodala 11 and Shaun Livingston 10.

The Warriors (15-6) were without leading scorers Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant and it showed, oddly enough, on defense. The Kings shot 53.2 percent, becoming the first team this season to shoot above 49 percent against the Warriors.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: The Warriors didn’t approach their usual high standard, but McCaw did a splendid job in his first start this season.

McCaw’s line: 16 points (5-of-8 shooting, including 2-of-5 from beyond the arc, 4-of-4 from the line), seven assists, four steals, three rebounds and one block. He played 33 minutes and finished plus-2.

TURNING POINT: This one was tight throughout, and the teams were never more than six points apart at any time in the fourth quarter and never more than four points apart over the final 9:59.

Not until Kings wiped out a four-point deficit by closing on an 8-0 run over the final 1:57 was this game decided.

The Warriors missed their last seven shots from the field.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: F Andre Iguodala (L knee soreness) was listed as doubtful and upgraded to available prior to tipoff. G Stephen Curry (R hand contusion) and F Kevin Durant (L ankle sprain) were listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Kings: F Harry Giles (bilateral knee rehabilitation) was listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to the court Wednesday night in Los Angeles, where they face the Lakers at Staples Center. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[49ers Coach Shanahan to Make QB Decision by Wednesday]]>Mon, 27 Nov 2017 18:46:26 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/49ers-garoppolo-1127.jpg

Quarterback C.J. Beathard sustained a knee contusion and a hip strain Sunday that could limit his practice time this week, 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said.

Beathard's injury is not expected to keep him out of action for long, though his availability for this week could be in question. Shanahan said he would make a decision by Wednesday whether Beathard or Jimmy Garoppolo will start Sunday against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field.

"To give those guys the best chance to be successful, you want to give them all the reps, which still isn't enough reps," Shanahan said. "Any time you split those evenly, it's kind of a disservice to both. If you need those reps to make a decision, I've done that before in other situations when you have to do it, but that's usually a situation you want to try to avoid."

Shanahan watched film with both quarterbacks on Sunday. The first practice of the week is scheduled for Wednesday.

Garoppolo played three snaps Sunday in the 49ers' 24-13 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. He scrambled for 4 yards, tossed an 8-yard pass to Aldrick Robinson and a 10-yard scoring throw to Louis Murphy.

Garoppolo entered the game with 1:07 remaining after Beathard went down with an injury. Beathard has completed 123 of 224 pass attempts (54.9 percent) for 1,430 yards with four touchdowns and six interceptions and a passer rating of 69.2.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Hang on to Get Back on the Winning Track]]>Sun, 26 Nov 2017 16:53:09 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/Marmarlynchhhh.jpg

The Raiders came away with a 21-14 victory they badly needed Sunday – but they nearly gave it away.

Oakland – perhaps energized by an early brawl with the Broncos, set off by a fight between Michael Crabtree and Aqib Talib (who both were ejected) – built a 21-0 lead going into the fourth quarter.

Oakland put up two touchdowns before the half on Derek Carr’s 9-yard pass to Amari Cooper and Marshawn Lynch’s 1-yard run, then scored again in the third quarter on Jalen Richard’s 6-yard pass from Carr.

But after Trevor Siemian replaced Paxton Lynch at quarterback for the Broncos – after Lynch completed just 9-of-14 throws for 41 yards while also throwing the first pass picked off by the Raiders defense in 2017 – the Denver offense came alive. Siemian threw TD passes of 25 yards to Cody Latimer and 22 yards to Bennie Fowler to get within a touchdown with 2:39 still remaining.

The Raiders, however, were able to burn off the clock – the big play coming on a 54-yard pass from Carr to Cordarrelle Patterson on third-and-8 from his own 15 – and keep the ball away from the Broncos as time expired.

With the victory, Oakland improves to 5-6 to stay alive in the AFC West race.

Carr completed 18-of-24 throws for 253 yards, two TDs and no interceptions.

Linebacker NaVorro Bowman came up with the Raiders’ first (and still only) interception this season, ending a 10-game drought.

The Raiders return to action next Sunday against the New York Giants at O.co Coliseum.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Beat Broncos, Move Within Game of 1st-Place Chiefs]]>Sun, 26 Nov 2017 18:06:23 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/Week12_Raiders_Broncos_6.jpg

OAKLAND – The Raiders went five weeks without playing at Oakland Coliseum. They supposedly saved the season with a Week 7 victory over Kansas City, but inconsistency reigned during their time playing away from home.

They got waxed by Buffalo, beat a sorry Miami squad, had a bye and then got embarrassed by New England in a Mexico City “home” game. That got defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. fired and put this season on the brink.

The Raiders have to go on a prolonged winning streak to seriously contend for a playoff spot, even with Kansas City (6-5) in a tailspin.

A streak requires consecutive wins, something the Raiders haven’t done since Week 2. Sunday’s 21-14 victory over the hapless Denver Broncos set up that possibility.

This was a weird one. A massive brawl started when Aqib Talib ripped Michael Crabtree’s chain off for a second straight season. (More on that here). Then the Raiders ended a 10-game interception drought when NaVorro Bowman picked Paxton Lynch in the end zone.

And, maybe in the greatest oddity of all, the Raiders defense was stout. The Silver and Black allowed just 219 yards – the Broncos had 66 yards through three quarters – and took a shutout into the fourth quarter. They had five sacks, creating pressure with some confusing looks designed by new play caller John Pagano.

This performance should be graded in context. The Broncos offense is in a sorry state. Paxton Lynch’s first start of the year was dreadful. Trevor Siemian through two late touchdowns to make it close, a concerning fourth-quarter turn.

But…Pagano had a good day calling plays, and definitely gives the pass rush some spice. He disguises rushers well, and brings them from odd places. He got the Raiders playing better in a hurry, an important step as he continues to put his stamp on the defense without wholesale changes.

But…can improved play be sustained? The New York Giants come to town next week. That’s a winnable game to be sure. Big Blue’s in shambles, too.

There’s a game at Kansas City the following week that could be worth a ton. Time will tell in that regard.

The Raiders offense must also get going down the stretch, and steady running will key that effort. Marshawn Lynch had his third straight solid game, with 67 yards and a touchdown on a season-high 26 carries. He also had three catches for 44 yards to pace the offense. The running game as a whole hit triple digits, with 104 yards. They weren’t terribly efficient (2.8 yards per carry), but stuck with it and controlled the clock.

The Raiders can’t change the games on their schedule, so they must build momentum and confidence during this competitive lull to prepare for a tough final stretch.

Cooper knocked out: The Raiders lost their most talented receiver in the first half, when Amari Cooper took a violent, albeit clean, shot from Broncos free safety Darian Stewart.

Both guys braced for impact. Cooper ducked his head and body down. Stewart’s should landed on Cooper’s helmet/neck area, knocking No. 89 out on a pass caught across the middle.

Cooper was unconscious on the field for an extended stretch, but waved off the cart and walked off the field with limited assistance. He was ruled out with a concussion.

Interception drought ends:The Raiders went 10-plus games without an interception. They finally got one early in the second quarter. In the end zone, no less.

Paxton Lynch’s pass was tipped by safety Reggie Nelson and caught by Bowman while laying on the ground. The Raiders turned that into points, with an eight-play, 80-yard drive finished with a nine-yard touchdown catch by Amari Cooper.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Durant Addresses Scuffles With Westbrook After Warriors Loss]]>Wed, 22 Nov 2017 21:56:05 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/westbrook-durant-ap.jpg

As you might expect when Kevin Durant returns to Oklahoma City, things got chippy at several moments Wednesday.

Once during the second quarter and again in the third quarter, Durant and former running mate Russell Westbrook could be seen yapping at each other. During the latter incident, the two literally went nose-to-nose, touching foreheads before being sperated.

After the Warriors' 108-91 loss to the Thunder, Durant was asked about the exchanges.

"Man, that's just ball. That's just ball me. He's competitive, I'm competitive. We like to go at it. Both of us. That's just part of the game, so I respect it. I got nothing but love for him. I'm expecting it again when we play them again. All fun and games to me," Durant told reporters.

Despite what the cameras caught, Durant tried to downplay the level of emotions between the two teams on the court.

"Can't let emotion seep into business. Can't do that. So I think on our end, we were just playing our game. They just played better than us tonight. The emotion around the court, around the arena, around the city I'm sure was a little higher than it was on the court. can't let emotion seep in. Just have to play better than that," Durant said.

When a reporter kept pressing about the incidents between Durant and Westbrook, the Warriors forward pushed back.

"Did you watch the game? Or did you watch for the scuffles? The story is about the game. We lost, they kicked our a**, they played a great. You should give them credit for how they played. We should be better. It's not about who's in each other's faces. That stuff is not real. So please, don't believe it. All the fans, they are lying to you. It's all about basketball. They played a great game. We didn't," Durant retorted.

So how did returning to his former home for the first time this season compare to his first trip back last year?

"It was a little better. Nothing like the first. I'm sure everyone in the arena said what they had to say," Durant said.

The next two times Durant and Westbrook meet up, it will be in Oakland (Feb.6 and Feb. 24). The Warriors don't return to Oklahoma City until April 3, 2018.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Jones Strong in Goal as Sharks Top Coyotes, Snap 3-Game Skid]]>Wed, 22 Nov 2017 21:08:29 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/sharks-1122.jpg

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Logan Couture scored his team-best 11th goal to help lift the San Jose Sharks to a 3-1 win over the Arizona Coyotes on Wednesday night.

Joe Thornton also scored and Joel Ward added an empty-net goal with 47.8 to play for the Sharks, who snapped a three-game losing streak.

Brendan Perlini scored with 7:37 to go, ruining Sharks goalie Martin Jones' bid for his second shutout of the season. The Coyotes saw their season-high three-game winning streak snapped and lost for the eighth time in nine home games (1-7-1).

Jones finished with 26 saves.

Coyotes goalie Antti Raanta left at 14:37 of the first period with an upper-body injury. Couture had collided with Raanta more than four minutes earlier, earning an interference penalty. Raanta skated to the bench during a stoppage in play and retreated to the locker room.

Scott Wedgewood took Raanta's place and was in net for only five seconds before the Sharks broke through. Wedgewood stopped Brent Burns' long shot from the top of the right circle even after it deflected off San Jose right wing Timo Meier. But the rebound kicked to the bottom of the right circle, where Thornton swept in and beat the goalie with a quick wrist shot.

San Jose made it 2-0 at 4:56 of the second, taking advantage of Arizona's inability to clear the zone while the Sharks were on a line change.

Justin Braun fought three Coyotes for the puck along the right boards before Joonas Donskoi swooped in, skated to the goal line then sent a pass across to Couture. Couture deked Wedgewood to the ice with a forehand fake, then scored on the backhand.

Perlini cut the lead to 2-1 when he redirected Derek Stepan's shot from the top of the right circle past Jones.

NOTES: Thornton has 22 goals and 83 points in 82 career games against Arizona. ... The Coyotes, who had played seven of their past eight on the road, opened a three-game homestand. ... Raanta made eight saves before leaving and has stopped 98 of the past 105 shots he's faced. ... Couture's goal was his first in five games.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Westbrook Goes Off as Thunder Blows Out Warriors]]>Wed, 22 Nov 2017 19:56:14 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/161*120/warriors-1122.jpg

The Warriors picked the wrong time to show up in Oklahoma City.

Displaying surprisingly low intensity, playing sleepy defense and shooting 41.3 percent Wednesday night, the Warriors were roasted 108-91 by the Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

Stephen Curry scored a team-high 24 points and Kevin Durant, making his second trip to OKC since leaving the Thunder for the Warriors in July 2016, totaled 21.

Committing 22 turnovers, off which the Thunder scored 33 points, the Warriors split their four-game road trip and fell to 13-5 this season.

This was the first signature win of the season OKC.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: On a night when none of the visitors shined, Omri Casspi provided good minutes off the bench.

Casspi’s line: 11 points (5-of-7 shooting, including 1-of-1 from deep) and six rebounds. He played 14 minutes and finished plus-5, one of two Warriors to finish in the plus column.

TURNING POINT: It didn’t take long for the Thunder to take control, and they didn’t give it up once they did.

The Warriors trailed 33-26 after one quarter and were down 13 less than four minutes later. With OKC closing the half on an 11-4 run, he Warriors went into halftime down 65-48.

They got no closer than 16 in the second half.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: F Kevin Durant (L ankle sprain), listed as probable, was upgraded to available prior to tipoff and inserted into the starting lineup. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Thunder: No injuries were listed.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to the court Friday night at Oracle Arena, where they face Chicago Bulls. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Two Donskoi Goals Not Enough as Sharks Fall to Ducks in SO]]>Mon, 20 Nov 2017 22:59:52 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-new-postgame.jpg


SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - Antoine Vermette beat goalie Martin Jones in the ninth round of a shootout to give the Anaheim Ducks a 3-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Monday night.

Corey Perry, Cam Fowler and Brandon Montour also scored during the tiebreaker for Anaheim.

Joonas Donskoi, Tim Heed and Brent Burns had shootout goals for the Sharks. Tomas Hertl missed his attempt in the ninth round, leaving Vermette a chance to win it.

Perry and Rickard Rakell scored in regulation for the Ducks. Reto Berra made 40 saves in his first start of the season.

Donskoi had two goals for the Sharks, including the tying score in the third period. Jones stopped 28 shots.

Donskoi helped create his own goal by knocking the puck away from a Ducks defender and getting it to Logan Couture for a give-and-go as the Sharks took a 1-0 lead 3:31 into the game.

The Ducks came back in the second period to even the score 45 seconds in. After winning a faceoff in the San Jose zone, Brandon Montour sent a sharp pass to Perry's stick. Perry settled it and fired into the net for the equalizer.

Rakell gave the Ducks a 2-1 advantage midway through the second, just as a power play ended. Perry took a shot that bounced off Jones' pads, and Rakell knocked it into the net before Jones could cover up.

The Sharks snapped an 0-for-17 streak on the power play with a goal midway through the third to tie it. Donskoi tracked down a rebound and flipped it off Berra's right pad and into the net for his second career multi-goal game.

NOTES: Ducks D Cam Fowler returned to action after missing 12 games with a knee injury. ... Sharks C Melker Karlsson missed the game with an upper-body injury. ... Sharks forward Kevin Labanc, who hasn't played much recently, started on the top line with Joe Thornton and Joe Pavelski. Donskoi was moved to the second line. ... Ducks G Ryan Miller missed the game with a lower-body injury. Berra made his fourth appearance this season. ... Perry has seven points in his last five games. ... Rakell has a point in seven of his past eight games, with a total of 11 during that span. ... The Sharks scored their second power-play goal in eight November games.


Ducks: Host the Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday.

Sharks: Play at the Arizona Coyotes on Wednesday.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Special Olympics Floor Hockey Event Lifts Sharks' Spirit]]>Mon, 20 Nov 2017 19:18:40 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks_special_1120_833584.JPG

The San Jose Sharks on Sunday took a much needed break from what turned out to be a rough week in their NHL schedule. For the second consecutive year, Sharks players and coaches took to the hardwood for a Special Olympics floor hockey event.

Eight Sharks players and a handful of coaches participated in Team Black vs. Team White at Bellarmine College Preparatory High School in San Jose. Head coach Peter DeBoer served as referee.

From start to finish, the experience was like a typical Sharks game at SAP Center. The two teams entered through a Sharks head to rousing introductions and applause. They stood patiently while organist Mikey Day played the national anthem. Even Sharks broadcasters Randy Hahn and Dan Rusanowsky had the call from the sideline.

Of course, the Special Olympians and Sharks players on the floor made it all happen.

"Hey, we've got to hit 38 on the outside here," Sharks defensman Brenden Dillon said as the game got started. "38 is the scorer here."

Dillon was joined by teammates Joe Pavelski, Joel Ward, Mikkel Boedker, Chris Tierney, Paul Martin and Dylan DeMelo.

For an exhibition game, it had some pretty competitive moments.

"It's been a little heated," Martin said. "There's been some broken sticks and some hip checks. But all in good sport and good fun. So it's pretty special."

And DeBoer's thoughts on his role-reversal as a ref?

"I thought I did," he said when asked if he called a fair game. "Obviously, the team that lost is disappointed in the refereeing, and the team that won thought I did a great job. But that's par for the course."

The Sharks teamed with Special Olympics Northern California to make the game happen for a second straight year. DeBoer participated in both.

"I actually was really looking forward to this year's event because of how well last year's went, and it didn't disappoint," he said. "It was even better."

The game went back and forth and was sent to a shootout tied at 4.

Toby Hoffman scored the game winner for Team White.

DeBoer said the event was a great way to put the past two losses on the ice behind them.

"You lose last night, you're down, and you come out here and see the joy on these athletes' faces," he said. "The winning goal, it was like they won the Stanley Cup."

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA['A Gold Medal is Insane:' Tahoe Gold Medalist Maddie Bowman]]>Mon, 20 Nov 2017 11:33:00 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/0119-110317-OLY-MADDIE-BOWMAN-TEXT-V4-REWRAP_1200x675_1088323651771.jpg

Bowman’s favorite memory from the Olympics is when she came home. “They hosted a parade from the high school in South Lake to Sierra Tahoe our home mountain, and the community like came together, and I was able to thank all of these people that helped me get there,” Bowman said. I think that was the coolest thing for me: to be able to share this with them, and just like feeling the love. I just feel so spoiled.”




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<![CDATA[Curry Scores 39, Warriors Fight Off Nets' Rally in Brooklyn]]>Sun, 19 Nov 2017 20:40:42 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/warriors-1119.jpg

After building a double-digit lead in the first quarter Sunday, the Warriors gave back nearly all of it before escaping with a 118-111 win over the Nets at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Stephen Curry scored a game-high 39 points, with Klay Thompson tossing in 23 and Andre Iguodala 12. Omri Casspi, starting in place of the injured Kevin Durant, delivered 12 points, six rebounds and two blocks.

The Warriors (13-4) limited Brooklyn to 35.8-percent shooting while shooting 51.1 percent from the field.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: On a night when all 13 players contributed something to the cause, Curry provided most of the power.

Curry’s line: a season-high-tying 39 points (14-of-24 shooting, including 4-of-10 from deep, 7-of-8 from the line), 11 rebounds, seven assists and three steals. He played 33 minutes and finished plus-4 before fouling out with three minutes remaining.

Curry scored 13 points in the first quarter and 15 in the third.

TURNING POINT: After an Allen Crabbe jumper pulled Brooklyn within four at 16-12 with 5:04 left in the first quarter, the Warriors went on a 22-9 run, taking a 38-21 lead on a basket by Iguodala with 10:24 left in the second quarter.

The Warriors took a 64-42 lead into the half, led by as much as 28 in the third quarter and took a 98-84 lead into the fourth, during which the Nets got as close as four (107-103) down the stretch before the Warriors held on.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: F Kevin Durant (L ankle sprain) was declared out Sunday morning. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Nets: G Jeremy Lin (ruptured patellar tendon) and G D’Angelo Russell (L knee surgery) were listed as out.

WHAT'S NEXT: The Warriors return to the court Wednesday in Oklahoma City, where they face the Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 4 o’clock, with tipoff scheduled for 5:05.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Luongo Picks Up a Career First in Panthers Win Over Sharks]]>Thu, 16 Nov 2017 22:29:50 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/luongo_hertl_ap.jpg


SAN JOSE - Roberto Luongo made 35 saves for his 74th career shutout and the Florida Panthers blanked the San Jose Sharks 2-0 Thursday night on goals by Colton Sceviour and Nick Bjugstad.

Florida coach Bob Boughner won in his return to San Jose. He served as an assistant coach for the Sharks the last two years.

Luongo earned his first shutout of the season and first in 32 games against San Jose.

Martin Jones was nearly as good for the Sharks. He stopped 26 shots, but that wasn't enough to keep the Panthers from winning for the seventh time in their last eight trips to San Jose.

Sharks defenseman Tim Heed had a goal disallowed on a coach's challenge a little less than five minutes into the second period. Replays showed he came into contact with the puck just behind the blue line, making the play offside.

San Jose had another goal overturned after a replay review. Brent Burns took a hard shot that Luongo nearly caught but couldn't handle and it bounced along his pads. Marc-Edouard Vlasic was one of three Sharks trying to poke at the puck and he used his stick to push both the puck and Luongo's pad into the net.

Sceviour scored a minute into the second after digging out the puck along the boards behind the net. He skated around the cage and poked a shot that hit Jones' pads. He took a second shot that got over the goalie's pads and went in.

Sceviour has four points in six games since returning from injury. He had two points in his first six games this season.

The Panthers, who have won three of four, added an insurance goal with less than eight minutes remaining. Radim Vrbata intercepted a pass in the Sharks zone and played it to Jamie McGinn, who got Jones to commit before dishing to Bjugstad for the score.

NOTES: Panthers C Michael Haley received a warm ovation from Sharks fans. He played in San Jose the last couple of years. ... Sharks D Paul Martin missed his 15th game with a lower-body injury, though he has been skating pain-free for the past two weeks. ... Florida center Vincent Trocheck has 12 points in his last 10 games. ... The Sharks have not scored on their past 15 power plays.


Panthers: At the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.

Sharks: Host the Boston Bruins on Saturday.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Celtics Roar Back in the Third, Outlast Warriors in Boston]]>Thu, 16 Nov 2017 20:16:54 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/warriors-1116.jpg

It was brutal and ugly throughout, and all the Warriors got for their effort Thursday was a 92-88 loss and the bitter memory of blowing a 17-point lead on the road.

They went into Boston’s TD Garden Thursday for the most anticipated game since opening night and saw their seven-game win streak end while the Celtics pushed their win streak to 14.

Kevin Durant scored 24 points to lead the offense, with Klay Thompson adding 13 and Draymond Green 11. Stephen Curry finished with a season-low 9 points as the Warriors (11-4) fell for the first time this month.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: On a night when no Warrior was tremendous, Durant posted the most impressive overall numbers.

Durant’s line: 24 points (9-of-18 shooting, including 2-of-5 from deep, 4-of-4 from the line), three rebounds, three assists, two blocks and a steal. He played 35 minutes and finished minus-6 for the game.

TURNING POINT: The Warriors led for most of three quarters and were up 66-49 with 4:59 left in the third quarter, when Boston went on a 19-0 run to go up 68-66 with 53 seconds left in the third.

The teams exchanged leads several times in the fourth quarter before the Celtics went in front for good on a pair of Kyrie Irving free throws with 14 seconds left in the game.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: G Stephen Curry (R thigh bruise) was listed as probable but upgraded to available prior to tipoff and inserted into starting lineup. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Celtics: F Gordon Hayward (L ankle fracture) was listed as out.

WHAT'S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Saturday, when they face the Philadelphia 76ers at Wells Fargo Center. Coverage on NBA Sports Bay Area starts at 3:30 p.m., with tipoff scheduled for 4:30.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Conley's Rookie Season Comes to a Disappointing End]]>Tue, 14 Nov 2017 08:27:14 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/174*120/conleygoesonir.jpg

Gareon Conley’s rookie season has come to an end.

The team’s No. 1 draft pick this season, Conley was placed on injured reserve Monday with a shin injury. The Raiders used their top pick on the Ohio State standout cornerback, hoping he could elevate the Oakland secondary, yet he played just two games. According to Matt Schneidman of the Bay Area News Group, Conley hadn’t even practiced since Oct. 6.

Conley had a strong game early in the season against the New York Jets, but hurt the shin and came out of the game against Washington the following week with a limp.

For the season, Conley was in on just seven tackles and had one pass defensed.

Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie had said recently that he was hopeful Conley could recover soon and get back on the field at some point this season to help the team’s pass defense, but the injury continued to linger.

“It’s just people’s bodies are different, when you have those type injuries, you wait and see if it can heal and feel better and good enough to play,” McKenzie said. “He was feeling better, then he had a setback. … If he can’t go, then he can’t go and we’re going to have to move on. But we’re going to give him every opportunity to see if he can do it.”

Now that the Raiders have decided to move on and give Conley a chance to fully heal for next season, Oakland’s top cornerbacks going into this Sunday’s game against the Patriots in Mexico City will be TJ Carrie, Sean Smith and Dexter McDonald, with David Amerson trying to work his way back from a foot injury that forced him to miss the team’s last game, against Miami.

Sunday’s game against New England is set to kick off at 1:25 p.m.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Run Away From Magic For Seventh Straight Win]]>Tue, 14 Nov 2017 00:06:10 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/186*120/warriors-1113.jpg

OAKLAND -- Even without Stephen Curry Monday night, the Warriors continued their rampage through the NBA, laying a 110-100 beating on the Orlando Magic at Oracle Arena.

The victory was the seventh in a row for the Warriors (11-3), all by double digits.

Four Warriors scored in double figures, with Kevin Durant’s 21 points leading the way. Draymond Green totaled 20 points, Shaun Livingston 16 and Klay Thompson 15.

The Warriors shot 50 percent from the field, while holding the Magic (8-6) to 42 percent -- 34.9 percent in the second half.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: One of the toughest tasks in the NBA is replacing Curry in the Warriors starting lineup. Livingston did it so well he was able to sit out the entire fourth quarter.

Livingston’s line: 16 points (6-of-12 shooting, 4-of-4 from the line), six assists, two rebounds and one steal. He was plus-16 over 20 minutes.

TURNING POINT: With score tied 56-56 at the half, the Warriors summoned their usual third-quarter blitz, opening with a 22-7 run and taking a 78-63 lead on a pair of Livingston free throws with 5:47 left in the quarter.

After limiting the Magic to 2-of-9 shooting while forcing three turnovers during the rally, the Warriors entered the fourth quarter with an 88-75 lead.

The Warriors led by as much as 21 in the fourth quarter before emptying the bench. Orlando got no closer than nine down the stretch.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: G Stephen Curry (R thigh contusion) is listed as questionable and downgraded to out prior to tipoff. F Jordan Bell was a healthy inactive.

Magic: G Elfrid Payton (L hamstring soreness) was listed as questionable, upgraded prior to tipoff and was in the starting lineup. G D.J. Augustin (L hamstring strain) and F Jonathon Issac (R ankle sprain) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Thursday, when they face the Boston Celtics at TD Garden in Boston. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 4 p.m., with tipoff scheduled for 5:05.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Score Twice in Third to Pull Out Win Over Kings in LA]]>Sun, 12 Nov 2017 23:55:11 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/karlsson-goal-sharks-kings-ap.jpg


LOS ANGELES -- After the Sharks and the Kings struggled to shoot any pucks into either net throughout a defense-dominated night, Joel Ward put his best foot forward.

Ward scored the tiebreaking goal on a long deflection off his skate with 7:10 to play, and San Jose rallied from a third-period deficit for a 2-1 victory over the Kings on Sunday night.

Melker Karlsson scored the tying goal early in the third before Ward got creative and lucky , using his left skate from the faceoff circle to redirect Barclay Goodrow's shot past Drew Doughty and Jonathan Quick for his third goal of the season.

"I started playing soccer the last couple of days," Ward said with a laugh, referring to many hockey players' long-standing tradition of using soccer to warm up before games in arena hallways. "I don't know. I saw it coming my direction. I actually knew Timo (Meier) was on the back side, and I just tried to redirect it over to his area."

Instead, it somehow went straight into Los Angeles' net for the eventual winner in the latest chapter of this long-standing California rivalry.

Martin Jones made 26 saves for the Sharks, who have won six of seven overall after evening the season series with Los Angeles.

"Especially when you come back in the third period to win it, it's even more rewarding," Goodrow said. "It's always a tight-checking game against these guys."

Dustin Brown scored on a first-period power play for the Pacific Division-leading Kings, who have lost four of six after a 9-1-1 start. Quick stopped 31 shots, but Los Angeles lost back-to-back games for the first time this season.

"I thought we played 20 (minutes) really well, and then 40 the way they wanted to play," Kings coach John Stevens said. "There were lots of issues before (Ward's) ricochet happened. It may look like an unlucky play, but there was an awful lot of things that could have gone better prior to that puck going into the net."

Captain Anze Kopitar extended his points streak to a career high-tying eight games with an assist for the Kings, but the game was appropriately low-scoring for a meeting of the NHL's two stingiest defensive teams.

"We just pulled back and we weren't attacking as much as we did in the first couple of periods," Kopitar said. "They were able to capitalize on that, but it was just a couple of fluky goals, really."

The Kings went ahead in the first period on Brown's redirection of Kopitar's shot for the Kings' sixth power play goal in six games.

The 33-year-old Brown was stripped of the Kings' captaincy last season and seemed to be on the downslope of his career with an immovable, multi-year contract and declining production.

But the two-time Stanley Cup winner has been utterly revitalized under new coach John Stevens. Playing with his usual physicality while rediscovering his offensive ability, Brown scored his eighth goal of this season nearly three months earlier than he hit the same mark last year, when he failed to crack 40 points for the fourth consecutive season.

After a scoreless second period featuring 15 saves by Quick, Karlsson tied it with his third goal of the season after a Kings clearing attempt took an odd deflection. Logan Couture got his Sharks-leading 15th point with an assist.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Soccer Fans in SJ React to Allegations Against FIFA Official]]>Sun, 12 Nov 2017 22:14:16 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/hope+solo-1112.jpg

The U.S. women's soccer team was in San Jose on Sunday night for a friendly against Canada, and there was a buzz around recent sexual harassment allegations by Team USA's former goalkeeper Hope Solo.

Solo has accused Sepp Blatter, former president of FIFA, the international governing body for soccer, of pinching her buttocks during an awards ceremony four years ago. She joined hundreds of women from across the country who are going public with accusations against their alleged attackers or harassers.

While Team USA took care of business on the field at Avaya Stadium, it's what Solo said happened off the field that had many fans talking.

Soccer fans Kristi and Mike Ward said they applaud Solo for coming forward.

"I thank them for paving the way and feeling confident enough to come out," Kristi Ward said.

Bravery, the Wards said, will help level the playing field for a new generation of young women in and out of sports.

"I think anyone who comes forward with any type of situation that has happened to them, has the right to be heard," Mike Ward said. "And not only the right to be heard, but the right to justice."

Solo is among hundreds of women in recent weeks who have gone public with accusations against actors, politicians and others positions of power. Fans see the surge of women bravely coming forward as progress that is long overdue.

"I'm excited that the world is willing to listen to it, at this point in time, and it's an exciting thing to finally be happening," women's soccer fan Alexis Heri said.

Blatter has denied Solo's allegations.

A spokesman for the U.S women's national team declined to comment on the allegations against Blatter or Solo's comments about it being a problem in the sport in general.

Photo Credit: Getty Images file]]>
<![CDATA[Heartbreaking Loss for Goodwin Hours Before 49ers' First Win]]>Mon, 13 Nov 2017 10:56:55 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/Week_10_49ers_Giants_1.jpg

Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin played a football game just hours after he and his wife, Morgan, lost their baby boy due to complications during pregnancy, he revealed on Sunday evening.

"(We) had to prematurely deliver him early this morning around 4 a.m.," Goodwin wrote in a post on Instagram. "Although we are hurt, I am grateful for the experience and grateful that God blessed me with a wife as courageous and resilient as Morgan.

The pain (physically, mentally, & emotionally) that she has endured is unbelievable. Please Pray for the Goodwin family."

Goodwin somehow played Sunday and came through with an 83-yard touchdown reception. He also provided a huge block on tight end Garrett Celek’s 47-yard touchdown pass in the 49ers’ 31-21 victory over the New York Giants on Sunday at Levi’s Stadium.

After Goodwin caught the deep pass from C.J. Beathard and avoided the tackle attempt of Giants cornerback Janoris Jenkins, he blew a kiss to the sky before crossing the goal line. Then, Goodwin showed his emotion as he dropped to his knees in prayer while in the end zone before his teammates rushed to congratulate him.

Goodwin left the Levi's Stadium locker room immediately after the game to be with his family.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Steph Curry Questionable for Monday's Game Against Magic]]>Sun, 12 Nov 2017 17:18:24 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/curry-mouthpiece-usatsi.jpg

A day after taking a knee to his right thigh, Steph Curry is officially questionable to play Monday night against the Magic.

The Warriors diagnosed Curry with a right thigh contusion. The injury was sustained shortly after tipoff Saturday night.

While Curry did receive treatment from trainers, he remained in the game and played 30 minutes. He finished with 22 points, nine assists and four rebounds.

After the game, Curry had a noticeable limp when he arrived for his postgame media availability.

If Curry is forced to miss Monday's game, expect veterans Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston to take on the primary ballhandling responsibilities.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Brawl at 49ers Game Injures Officer, Results in 3 Arrests]]>Mon, 13 Nov 2017 23:53:28 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/tlmd_levis_stadium_sanfrancisco.jpg

Three people were arrested at Sunday's game between the San Francisco 49ers and New York Giants at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara after refusing to leave their seats and getting into an altercation that left an officer with injuries, police said.

Patrick Flynn, a 29-year-old resident of Brighton, Massachusetts, was arrested on suspicion felony battery on a police officer resulting in injury and resisting arrest, Santa Clara police Capt. Wahid Kazem.

Flynn is also accused of two misdemeanor counts of battery on a police officer, Kazem said.

He is currently being held on $40,000 bail in the Santa Clara County Jail and has a court date for Wednesday in San Jose, according to county jail records.

In addition to Flynn, Kazem said two other people -- including a relative of Flynn's -- were arrested on misdemeanor offenses.

Kyle Flynn, 26, of Arlington, Virginia, was arrested on suspicion of one misdemeanor count each of being drunk in public and obstruction of justice.

Additionally, 29-year-old Lauren Alcatraz was arrested on suspicion of a misdemeanor count of obstruction of justice.

According to Kazem, the unruly fans had been given a warning about their behavior earlier in the game while in their seats, which were in the first and second rows of section 121 just above the Giants sideline. The fans were allegedly causing distractions to players and team personnel on the field.

"Their actions were determined to be in violation of the stadium's code of conduct policy," Kazem said.

When officers arrived to escort them off the field, Kazem said they refused to get out of their seats, and a scuffle ensued between one of the officers and Patrick Flynn, resulting in the officer and Flynn going over the railing.

After they went over the railing, Kazem said Patrick Flynn kept resisting arrest, and police used a Taser stun gun on him, after which he ultimately complied with the officers.

The officer who was injured suffered minor to moderate injuries and was treated at a hospital and then released a few hours later.

Kazem couldn't confirm what exactly the fans were doing that garnered a warning from stadium personnel earlier in the game.

A 49ers team spokesman declined to comment on the incident.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[49ers Defend Reports of Low Attendance at Games]]>Fri, 10 Nov 2017 11:49:19 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/160*120/23546960_10100275074666666_1536960784_o.jpg

The 49ers will try to break their losing streak when they take on the New York Giants this Sunday.

You’ve probably noticed how empty Levi’s Stadium has appeared during recent games. It got us thinking: just how bad is attendance?

The San Francisco 49ers say attendance is not as low as you might think. The organization said that 55,000 people attended last Sunday’s game against the Cardinals. That’s about an 85% attendance rate when you consider that there are 65,000 sellable tickets per game. The 49ers believe the shots of the empty stands are misleading given that a number of fans pay to enjoy the game from six of the internal club areas.

You don’t have to pay much to see the 49ers play in person. For example, on StubHub: you can get nosebleeds to this Sunday’s game against the giants for about $19. Club seats near the 50-yard line run around $220.

The 49ers are winless at 0-9. The Giants record isn’t much better at 1 and 7.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[New A's Ballpark Would Put Bird Mecca at Risk: Expert]]>Thu, 09 Nov 2017 22:22:24 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/birdsballpark1109_714804.JPG

Concerns continue to pile up regarding the Oakland A's projected site for a new ballpark, and the latest involves birds.

The head of the Golden Gate Audubon Society, Cindy Margulis, worries the bird mecca at Lake Merritt would be at serious risk if there's a ballpark nearby.

Margulis says during nesting season, herons, egrets, cormorants, ducks and other species make hundreds of trips a day to the estuary to get food for their their babies, and flying by a loud and lit up ballpark could be disastrous.

"If the crowd erupts when there’s a homer, the birds will get spooked and will potentially fly into the highway and cause traffic accidents," Margulis said. "It could be a disaster for all the wildlife that depends on Lake Merritt for refuge."

She fears birds that have nested here for generations will abandon the area, and that would be a shame.

"I think what’s in the center of Oakland is pretty magical and special," she said.

The A’s have said they’re committed to building the 30,000-plus-seat stadium near Laney College responsibly. In a statement, the team said, "We look forward to engaging in a community process where all voices are incorporated into our plan, including Golden Gate Audubon."

The ballpark plan world require an Environmental Impact Review. Margulis hopes the birds aren’t sent running from home.

"I definitely want the birds to stay, and I want the A’s to stay too," she said. "Wildlife and people and sports and commerce; all of those things can live together in the city, but we have to be respectful of who belongs there."

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Lightning Snaps Sharks' Winning Streak]]>Wed, 08 Nov 2017 22:23:02 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks_lightning_usatsi.jpg


After allowing a goal on the first shot of the game, Tampa Bay Lightning scored five unanswered, and ended the San Jose Sharks' four-game winning streak with a 5-1 win at SAP Center on Wednesday night.

Nikita Kucherov and Vladislav Namestnikov each had three points, while Steven Stamkos and Yanni Gourde had two apiece. Tampa Bay goaltender Andrei Vasilveskiy picked up his league-leading 12th win of the season.

Sharks forward Joonas Donskoi opened the scoring 25 seconds into the contest, but were unable to score over the next 59:35. San Jose goaltender Martin Jones allowed four goals on 21 shots, and backup Aaron Dell replaced him at the start of the third period. 

The Sharks fell to 3-1-0 on their five-game homestand, and will conclude their extended SAP Center stint on Saturday against the Vancouver Canucks. The Lightning, meanwhile, play Thursday night in Los Angeles on the second half of a back-to-back. 

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Run Away From Wolves, Win Fifth Straight]]>Thu, 09 Nov 2017 00:06:37 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/191*120/warriors-1108.jpg

OAKLAND -- The Warriors cooled the Timberwolves and stayed hot in the process, running off with a 125-101 win Wednesday night at Oracle Arena.

The victory was the fifth in row for the Warriors (9-3) and snapped a five-game win streak for Minnesota (7-4).

Six Warriors scored in double figures, led by Klay Thompson’s 28 points. Stephen Curry put in 22, Omri Casspi 13, Nick Young 12, Andre Iguodala -- starting for Kevin Durant -- 11 and David West totaled 10.

The Warriors overcame early turnovers with 63.5-percent shooting over the final three quarters.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: This one goes to the bench, with Omri Casspi and Nick Young leading the way.

Casspi’s line: 13 points (5-of-7 shooting, including 1-of-1 from deep, 2-of-3 from the line), three blocks, two steals and two rebounds. He played 20 minutes and finished plus-9.

Young’s line: 12 points (4-of-11 shooting, 3-of-9 from deep), five assists, four steals and three rebounds. He drilled a two 3-pointers and nabbed two steals during the game-turning rally in the third quarter. He played 21 minutes and finished plus-9.

Warriors reserves outscored those of the Timberwolves 57-29.

TURNING POINT: When Minnesota got within 3 (67-64) on a Karl-Anthony Towns layup with 6:39 left in the third quarter, the Warriors switched on the defense to trigger a 24-8 run that gave the Warriors a 91-72 lead on a Young 3-pointer with 1:19 left in the third.

The Warriors limited the Timberwolves to 3-of-9 shooting with six turnovers during the rally and closed the quarter with a 95-76 lead.

Minnesota got no closer than 15 in the fourth quarter.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: F Kevin Durant (L thigh contusion) was listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Timberwolves: C Justin Patton (L foot surgery) was listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Saturday night, when they face the Philadelphia 76ers at Oracle Arena. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Trudge Past Heat for Fourth Straight Win]]>Mon, 06 Nov 2017 23:40:59 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/warriors-1106.jpg

OAKLAND -- Few teams in the NBA are as good as Miami at disrupting the Warriors offensive flow, and the Heat’s scrap worked for most of a half Monday night at Oracle Arena.

The Warriors found enough rhythm before halftime to roll to a 97-80 victory, their fourth consecutive win, but the first time this season they failed to score 100 points.

Four Warriors scored in double figures, with Kevin Durant finishing with 21, Draymond Green 18, Stephen Curry 16 and Klay Thompson 13. They moved their record to 8-3 even while shooting a season-low 36.8 percent from the field.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Though Curry was effective despite 5-of-19 shooting and Green was terrific but limited to 27 minutes by foul trouble, Durant was a rock at both ends even with subpar shooting from the field.

Durant’s line: 21 points (5-of-13 shooting, including 1-of-5 from deep, 10-of-10 from the line), eight rebounds, six assists, three blocks and a steal He played 33 minutes and finished plus-23.

TURNING POINT: After Miami pulled into a 34-34 tie on a layup by Goran Dragic with 3:57 remaining, Warriors coach Steve Kerr inserted Andre Iguodala and Thompson into the lineup, joining Curry, Durant and Green.

The result? The Warriors, behind the “Hamptons 5,” closed the half on a 16-3 run to go up 50-37.

The Heat got no closer than 10 (80-70, 7:07 remaining) in the second half.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: F/C David West (rest) was listed as out. C Damian Jones is on assignment with Santa Cruz of the G-League.

Heat: G Dion Waiters (personal) and G/F Rodney McGruder (L tibia surgery) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to the court Wednesday night, when they face the Minnesota Timberwolves at Oracle Arena. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 6:30, with tipoff scheduled for 7:35.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Fed Up With Mass Shootings, Steve Kerr Takes on Gun Control]]>Mon, 06 Nov 2017 23:37:47 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/kerr-sideangle-usatsi.jpg

OAKLAND -- As the number of mass shootings in America this year ticks toward 400, most of the general public is showing more and more signs of sheer exasperation with government inaction.

Count Warriors coach Steve Kerr among those who are past their threshold with the government limiting its reaction to these tragedies to such tired platitudes as "sending our thoughts and prayers" to the survivors while the powerful National Rifle Association lobby continues to assert authority over politicians.

After first expressing condolences to those affected by the mass shooting Sunday at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Tex. that killed with 26 men, women and children, Kerr on late Monday afternoon dived into problem-solving mode.

"To solve it, we almost have to look at it like a public health issue," he said two hours before tipoff against the Miami Heat. "Too often we get caught up in political rhetoric, Second Amendment rights, NRA stuff. We have to look at this as it has nothing to do with partisanship or political parties -- it's got to be a public safety issue, a public health issue."

Kerr has long been a strong advocate for gun control, his passion on the topic undoubtedly stirred by the brutal 1984 assassination of his father, Malcolm Kerr, at the American University of Beirut.

What Kerr had to say Monday makes sense on so many levels. He reference an article he read earlier in the day that compared the inaction on gun control to the steps taken to address auto fatalities in the 1950s and 1960s.

With the addition of such seat belts, speed limits, air bags, driver's licensing and other safety measures, death rates on American highways have been dramatically curtailed.

"All these things are just safety issues," Kerr said. "We have to somehow get our government to cut through all the crap and get right to the point, the point of fact, which is safety. Which means (there are) a lot of things that we can do without taking away peoples' Second Amendment rights. Let's do the sensible thing.

"But our government has to lead the way," he added. "They can't just cave in to the NRA just because the NRA wants to make money. They have to put people's safety and health over the interests of the gun lobby and the gun industry. It doesn't seem like it would be that far of a stretch, but for whatever reason we're paralyzed and we're unable to do anything to protect our citizens.

"It's disgusting and it's a shame."

Photo Credit: Monte Poole]]>
<![CDATA[Carr Comes Out Throwing as Raiders Beat Dolphins]]>Sun, 05 Nov 2017 20:58:43 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/189*120/raiders+carr1.jpg

Derek Carr and the Raiders looked like a much different team Sunday night.

In a game they seemingly had to win, Carr came out throwing effectively downfield early, and the rest of the offense followed, in Oakland’s 27-24 victory over host Miami.

The victory bumps the Raiders' record up to 4-5 and gives them momentum at the start of the second half of their 2017 season after a loss in Buffalo last week.

Last week, critics wondered why Carr wasn’t taking shots downfield against the Bills – and why he hasn’t been efficient going deep this year the way he did last year. So, he came out firing.

Carr completed six of his first seven throws of more than 10 yards past the line of scrimmage for 143 yards and a touchdown, with the big one being a 44-yard scoring strike to Johnny Holton in the second quarter to put the Raiders up 10-7.

For the night, Carr was 21-of-30 for 300 yards, with the one TD and one interception.

Meanwhile, Marshawn Lynch returned from a one-game suspension to rush for 57 yards and two TDs, including a 22-yard weaving burst through the Miami defense in the third quarter to put Oakland up 20-10. Lynch later added a 3-yard TD to give the Raiders a 27-16 lead.

The Dolphins came right back to drive 83 yards to close the gap to 27-24 (following a two-point conversion run) with 1:32 remaining.

After Oakland’s Amari Cooper controlled the Dolphins’ onside kick attempt, the Raiders were able to run out the clock and collect the victory.

The Raiders now go into their bye week. They’ll try to keep their winning ways going on Sunday, Nov. 19, when they’ll host the New England Patriots.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Lynch Scores Twice as Raiders Earn Big Win Over Dolphins]]>Sun, 05 Nov 2017 23:57:02 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/185*120/raiders+lynch-1105.jpg

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – The AFC was kind to the Raiders Sunday afternoon.

Denver and Kansas City lost. So did several others above them in the wild card race. A 27-24 victory over Miami vaulted them right back in the playoff picture. A great second-half run is required, but they need more luck to turn things around.

Sunday’s events put the Raiders in a tie for eighth in the conference. They started the day in 14th.

The Raiders are, somehow, right back in it.

They’re two games back in the AFC West, and 1.5 behind the second wild card spot.

A victory made that happen. It wasn’t always pretty, but the Raiders got the job done. They head home from a two-game road trip with a split that sets their record at 4-5.

They head into a bye before playing New England in Mexico City.

That game means something because the Raiders found a way to beat the Dolphins.

Marshawn Lynch played his best game as a Raider, with 57 yards and two touchdowns on 14 carries. That included a 22-yard scoring jaunt and a 14-yard rumble on a key second-half drive.

He got in again in the fourth quarter to put the Raiders up two scores with 4 minutes, 37 seconds left.

Quarterback Derek Carr found Johnny Holton deep for a 44-yard touchdown that was the team’s only first-half touchdown.

The Miami native beat his man deep and Carr gave him room to run under the pass.

Holton’s reception was one of a few not directed to Jared Cook. The veteran tight end had eight receptions for 126 yards, including six for 113 yards in the first half.

Cook has exceeded 100 receiving yards for the second time in his last three games.

Cook and Carr have found a nice rhythm in recent weeks, especially working through the middle of the field. It took some time to get going, but Cook has become a real asset in the offense.

Getting Cook and Lynch active should supplement an offense that has been inconsistent all season.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Cueto Decides Not to Test Market, Will Stay With Giants]]>Sun, 05 Nov 2017 17:59:01 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/cueto-us_3.jpg

SAN FRANCISCO -- Throughout the second half of a disappointing season, Johnny Cueto hinted that he would return to the Giants. On Saturday it became official. 

Cueto declined to opt out of a six-year contract that he signed in December of 2015, locking him into the final four years, per a source. According to the original terms of his deal, Cueto had three days after this year's World Series to opt out and become a free agent. The deadline passed at 9 p.m. Saturday. The Giants now owe him $21 million in each of the next four seasons, with a $22 million club option in 2022 that includes a $5 million buyout. 

A year ago at this time, it seemed a lock that Cueto would jump back into free agency and try to hit a bigger payday. A lot has changed since then, for Cueto and the Giants. 

Cueto, who turns 32 during spring training, signed with the Giants after the 2015 offseason and immediately lived up to expectations with an All-Star 2016 season. The Giants always expected Cueto to test free agency after two seasons, but he dealt with blisters and flexor tendon discomfort and spent 45 games on the disabled list. When he was on the field, Cueto had just as many issues. He posted a 4.52 ERA and 1.45 WHIP in 25 starts and finished his season by giving up 12 hits over five innings in the final game of the season. 

When asked about his looming decision, Cueto consistently said he loves playing in San Francisco, but he never went as far as saying he would absolutely be back, noting that he needed to consult with his agent, Bryce Dixon, in October. The Giants were under the belief that Cueto wanted to tweak his contract in order to return, perhaps guaranteeing one final year, but they weren't inclined to make any changes after the season Cueto had. Ultimately, no changes were made to the original deal. 

Photo Credit: Alex Pavlovic]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Soar Past Spurs After Trailing by 19]]>Thu, 02 Nov 2017 23:05:24 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/181*120/warriors-1102.jpg

With the same formula utilized in their last regular season game in San Antonio, the Warriors overcame a 19-point first-quarter deficit to beat the Spurs 112-92 Thursday night at AT&T Center.

Klay Thompson scored a game-high 27 points, with Kevin Durant totaling 24, Stephen Curry 21 and Draymond Green 16.

The Warriors (6-3) shot 51.8 percent from the field -- 50 percent beyond the arc -- and held San Antonio (4-4) to 35.9-percent shooting and 37 points in the second half.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Though Curry was tremendous and Durant owned the third quarter, scoring 15 points, it was Green’s energy and all-around impact that carried the Warriors for much of the night.

Green’s line: 16 points (7-of-8 shooting, including 1-of-2 from deep, 1-of-2 from the line), seven assists, five rebounds and one steal. He played 29 minutes and finished plus-14.

TURNING POINT: After methodically shrinking a 19-point first-quarter deficit to five (55-50) at the half, the Warriors opened the third quarter with a 20-8 run to pull into a 70-63 lead on a Durant jumper with 7:20 left in the quarter.

The Warriors maintained a lead throughout the fourth quarter, with the Spurs getting no closer than seven (89-82 with 8:08 remaining)

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: No injuries listed. Curry tweaked his left knee in the first quarter, was re-taped and returned to the game. F Kevon Looney was a healthy inactive. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Spurs: C Joffrey Lauvergne (R ankle sprain), F Kawhi Leonard (R quadriceps tendinopathy) and G Tony Parker (L quadriceps tendon surgery) were listed as out.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Fists Fly as Sharks Take Care of Predators, Win 3rd Straight]]>Wed, 01 Nov 2017 23:06:03 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-recpa-ap.jpg


SAN JOSE - Joonas Donskoi and Mikkel Boedker each had a goal and an assist to lead the San Jose Sharks past the Nashville Predators 4-1 on Wednesday night for their third straight victory.

Joe Pavelski and Marc-Edouard Vlasic also scored and Martin Jones made 19 saves for the Sharks, who have won six of eight.

Roman Josi scored for the Predators, who lost their second straight after recording at least a point in six of their previous seven games. Pekka Rinne stopped 19 shots but fell to 11-7-4 against the Sharks.

Donskoi scored an easy goal late in the first period thanks to the work of Boedker, who fired a pass to defenseman Tim Heed at the right side of the crease. Heed tapped a quick pass to Donskoi, who had an open net.

Pavelski redirected a shot from Brenden Dillon midway through the second period to make it 2-0.

Josi picked up the puck from a faceoff and weaved through a bit of traffic before finding the top corner of the net to bring Nashville to 2-1.

The Sharks scored a power-play goal less than four minutes later. Vlasic found the net after taking a pass from Kevin Labanc.

The Predators opened a four-game road trip over six days. The Sharks are in the midst of playing eight of nine at home.

Boedker scored a 4-on-4 goal late in the third period after Chris Tierney won a battle for the puck behind the net and found him open in front.

NOTES: Sharks C Joe Thornton became the 20th NHL player to reach 1,400 points when he assisted on Pavelski's goal. ... Donskoi scored his fourth goal in seven games. ... Heed has points in four of his last five games. ... Josi has six points in his last seven games. ... Predators C Calle Jarnkrok got his 50th career assist. ... Sharks D Joakim Ryan got his first NHL assist on Boedker's goal.


Predators: At the Anaheim Ducks on Friday.

Sharks: Host the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Source: Giants' New Hitting Coach to Come From Astros Staff]]>Wed, 01 Nov 2017 22:07:27 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/powell-ap1.jpg

SAN FRANCISCO -- It turns out there's a pretty good reason why the Giants have waited so long to announce a new hitting coach. Their choice has been pretty busy. 

The Giants plan to announce Alonzo Powell as their next hitting coach, a source confirmed Wednesday night. Powell is currently serving as the assistant hitting coach for the Houston Astros, so the organization has been waiting for the World Series to end. Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston first reported that Powell is the Giants' choice. 

Powell, 52, was born in San Francisco and is a graduate of Lincoln High. He was drafted by the Giants before spending parts of two seasons in the big leagues with the Expos and Mariners.

Photo Credit: Associated Press
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<![CDATA[U.S. Halfpipe Skiing: Maddie Bowman]]>Mon, 20 Nov 2017 12:47:01 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/470743611.jpg

Just one hundred days until the opening ceremony of the winter Olympics and with the games getting so close, we are checking in with athletes from Northern California.

Like the owner of this Olympic gold medal from the 2014 games in Sochi, Russia. South Lake Tahoe’s Maddie Bowman is expected to lead a strong team of halfpipe Skiiers to PyeongChang, South Korea.

So, how has winning the gold changed Bowman’s life?

“Aside from a little bit more pressure the gold medal – it changed my life in a way that I wasn't really expecting,” Bowman said. “You know I received this platform that I didn't have before. And so I've had the opportunity to interact with young kids more about sports and also you know you know speak out about climate change.”

Believe it or not, Maddie Bowman's favorite memory from the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia wasn't actually winning the gold medal. In fact, it didn't even happen in Russia. “That high you get when you win a gold medal is insane, like it’s the top of the top. And you’re just indestructible,” Bowman told NBC Bay Area. “Everyone has this pressure that builds over four years, it’s hard to figure out how to cope with it and we each do our own thing, but it’s definitely there. I think once I get my skis on my feet I’m just gonna be so happy.”

Bowman’s favorite memory from the Olympics is when she came home. “They hosted a parade from the high school in South Lake to Sierra Tahoe our home mountain, and the community like came together, and I was able to thank all of these people that helped me get there,” Bowman said. I think that was the coolest thing for me: to be able to share this with them, and just like feeling the love. I just feel so spoiled.”



Teams: 2014

Gold, HP, Sochi, RUS, 2014

AFP Ranking

1st, HP, 2016

7th, Overall, 2016

8th, HP, 2015

1st, HP, 2014

11th, Overall, 2014

1st, HP, 2013

2nd, HP, 2012

9th, Overall, 2012


Gold, HP, Aspen, CO, 2016

Gold, HP, Aspen, CO, 2015

Gold, HP, Aspen, CO, 2014

Sivler, HP, Oslo, NOR, 2016

Bronze, HP, Tignes, FRA, 2013

Gold, HP, Aspen, CO, 2013

Silver, HP, Aspen, CO, 2012


Eleven starts, five podiums, three wins since 2011

2nd in HP standings, 2014

5th in HP standings, 2013


1st, HP, Park City, UT, 2016

5th, HP, Mammoth Mountain, CA, 2016

1st, HP, Mammoth Mountain, CA, 2015

1st, HP, Park City, UT, 2014

1st, HP Breckenridge, CO, 2014

2nd, HP, Copper Mountain, CO, Dec. 2013

1st, HP, Park City, UT, 2013

1st, HP, Copper Mountain, CO, 2013

3rd, HP, Mammoth Mountain, CA, 2012

4th, HP, Copper Mountain, CO, 2011

6th, HP, Park CIty, UT, 2015


1st, HP, SFR Freestyle Tour, FRA, 2016

1st, HP, Dew Tour, Breckenridge, CO, Dec. 2014

1st, HP, Dew Tour, Breckenridge, CO, Dec. 2013

1st, HP, AFP World Championships, Whistler, CAN, 2012

1st, HP, Dew Tour, Killington, VT, 2012

2nd, HP, Dew Tour, Breckenridge, CO, 2012

1st, HP, North Face Park & Pipe Open Series, Copper Mountain, CO, 2012

1st, HP U.S. Rev Tour, Northstar-at-Tahoe, CA, 2012

3rd, HP, Dew Tour, Snowbasin, UT, 2012

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Meet 2018 Winter Olympic Hopeful Nate Holland]]>Mon, 13 Nov 2017 16:36:20 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/181*120/Nate_Holland1.jpg

Just one hundred days until the opening ceremony of the winter Olympics and with the games getting so close, we are checking in with athletes from Northern California.

If Truckee’s Nate Holland makes it to PyeongChang, it will be his fourth Olympics as a member of the U.S. snowboard team.

Holland has yet to win a medal, but he is optimistic about his chances in 2018. At 38, Nate says he’s never been better at conditioning, training, and strategizing.

“I’m enjoying the journey and hopefully, that's what this Olympic gold medal is – a journey of four Olympics,” Holland said. “But you know it's a day of racing, anything can happen so I’m prepared for any result. I mean you gotta go for gold there’s just no other color out there.”



Team: 2006, 2010, 2014

4th, SBX, Vancouver, CAN, 2010

14th, SBX, Torino, ITA, 2006


Gold, SBX, Aspen, CO, 2014

Gold, SBX, Aspen, CO, 2012

Gold, SBX, Aspen, CO, 2010

Gold, SBX, Aspen, CO, 2009

Gold, SBX, Aspen, CO, 2008

Gold, SBX, Aspen, CO, 2007

Gold, SBX, Aspen, CO, 2006

Gold, Ultracross, Aspen, CO, 2004

Bronze, SBX, Aspen, CO, 2015

Bronze, SBX, Aspen, CO, 2011


Teams: 2007, 2009, 2011, 2015

4th, Krieschberg, AUT,2015

3rd, SBX, La Molina, SPA, 2011

3rd, SBX, Arosa, SUI, 2007

13th, Gangwon, KOR, 2009


76 World Cup starts, 6 World Cup wins, and 16 podiums.

Won the PyeongChang Olympic test event in 2016

Ranked 3rd in World Cup Standings, 2012


1st, Jeep King of the Mountain, Sun Valley, ID, 2008

2nd, Jeep King of the Mountain, Squaw Valley, CA, 2008

<![CDATA[U.S. Skiing: Meet 2018 Winter Olympic Hopeful Stacey Cook]]>Thu, 02 Nov 2017 17:09:11 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/Stacey+Cook.jpg

Just one hundred days until the opening ceremony of the winter Olympics and with the games getting so close, we are checking in with athletes from Northern California.

Stacey Cook is already an Olympic veteran. In fact, if this downhill skiier from Truckee makes the team, it will be, at the age of 33, her fourth Olympic Games.

While Cook has been one of the best U.S. skiiers for the past decade, she’s had tough luck at the Olympics, having yet to win a medal.

But Stacey says podium or not, she is proud of all she has accomplished in her career,” Cook said.

"This year I've gotten to a place where I've you know I've done really well and I can be proud of everything I've done and I don't need to prove this Olympic go around. Like I want it I'm definitely trying hard I'm striving for it but it's not it's not a proof thing anymore it's really my own journey.



Teams: 2006, 2010, 2014

11th, DH, Vancouver, CAN, 2010

17th, DH, Sochi, RUS, 2014

19th, DH, Torino, ITA, 2006

23rd, GS, Torino, ITA, 2006


Teams: 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015

6th, DH, Schladming, AUT, 2013

9th, DH, Val d'Isere, FRA, 2009

13th, SG, Vail/Beaver Creek, USA, 2015

16th, SC, Val d'Isere, FRA, 2009

16th, DH, Are, SWE, 2007

19th, DH, Vail/Beaver Creek, USA, 2015

22nd, SG, Val d'Isere, FRA, 2009

25th, DH, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, GER, 2011

WORLD CUP (highlights)

Ranked 15th in DH, 26th in SG, 2016

5th, DH, Lake Louise, CAN, 2016

2nd in Historic First-Ever U.S. podium sweep, along with Lindsey Vonn (1st) and Julia Mancuso (3rd) (Lake Louise DH, 2014)

Ranked 14th in DH, 29th in SG, 2015

Nine career top 10 DH finishes in Lake Louise

Back-to-back downhill seconds to open the season, finished fourth in the downhill standings, 2013

10th in downhill standings, 2012


2008, DH, Sugarloaf, ME

2008, SG, Sugarloaf, ME

2006, SG, Sugarloaf, ME


2004 NorAm overall and downhill champion

Two-time Junior Worlds Team member

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Ruin Marleau's Return, Beat Maple Leafs 3-2]]>Mon, 30 Oct 2017 21:46:31 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-celebrate-goal-mapleleafs-usatsi.jpg


SAN JOSE -- Rookie defenseman Tim Heed scored a tiebreaking goal on the power play early in the third period to spoil Patrick Marleau's return to San Jose by leading the Sharks to a 3-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday night.

Heed scored on a slap shot from just above the faceoff circle with 15:49 to play and assisted on Joe Pavelski's second-period goal to give the Sharks their 10th straight win over Toronto. Joel Ward added an empty-net goal for San Jose.

This time it came with Marleau in a Maple Leafs sweater as he returned to the arena he called home for his first 19 seasons in the NHL. Marleau left as a free agent this summer to sign an $18.75 million, three-year contract with Toronto.

Marleau finished with two shots on goal but didn't record a point as Martin Jones made 16 saves for San Jose to improve to 7-0 against the Maple Leafs. Jones has allowed just 10 goals in those starts.

Auston Matthews scored in the first period and Nazem Kadri added a goal with 1:10 remaining to cut San Jose's lead to 3-2. The Maple Leafs have lost four of five and were held to only two shots on goal in a span of more than 31 minutes in the second and third periods.

Frederik Andersen made 36 saves but had no chance on Heed's slapper that went into the top corner after Timo Meier had drawn a cross-checking penalty from Dominic Moore early in the period.

The night started with an emotional pregame ceremony for Marleau. The Sharks played a video tribute to Marleau and he received a loud ovation that lasted nearly 90 seconds from the fans, who chanted "Pat-ty! Pat-ty!" Players from both teams tapped their sticks in appreciation as the spotlight shined on Marleau and he waved to the crowd.

The Sharks then controlled play for the first two periods but were unable to translate their 25-11 advantage in shots on goal to a lead on the scoreboard.

The Maple Leafs struck first midway through the first period when Matthews beat Logan Couture to the rebound of a point shot from Nikita Zaitsev and knocked it into the open net for his ninth goal.

San Jose tied it midway through the second when Pavelski deflected Heed's point shot past Andersen for his third goal.

NOTES: Thornton got an assist on San Jose's first goal, giving him 1,399 points to move past Jari Kurri for sole possession of 20th place on the career list. ... Toronto forwards James Van Riemsdyk (lower body) and Matt Martin (upper body) returned to the lineup after missing one game each.

Maple Leafs: Visit the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday night.

Sharks: Host the Nashville Predators on Wednesday night.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Beat Clippers for 11th Straight Time]]>Mon, 30 Oct 2017 21:57:00 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/durant-curry-celebrating-clippers-ap.jpg

The Warriors took one look at the new Clippers and promptly treated them as they did the old Clippers, rolling to a 141-113 win Monday night in Los Angeles.

Stephen Curry scored 31 points, Kevin Durant 19, Draymond Green 16 and Klay Thompson 15. JaVale McGee added 10 off the bench in the team’s most impressive game of the season.

One night after committing a season-high 26 turnovers against Detroit, the Warriors totaled a season-low 12 giveaways in beating LA for the 11th consecutive time.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: Durant was tremendous and Curry was even better. But Green, coming off a poor performance Sunday, was spectacular at both ends.

Green’s line: 16 points (5-of-8 shooting, 1-of-2 from deep, 5-of-8 from the line), nine rebounds, six assists, two steals and one block. He played 31 minutes and finished plus-18.

Moreover, Green once again stifled Clippers star Blake Griffin, who totaled 16 points and three rebounds, finishing minus-23 in 30 minutes.

TURNING POINT: When the Clippers closed to within four (49-45) on a lob dunk by DeAndre Jordan with 5:15 left in the second quarter, the Warriors responded with a 17-5 run, taking a 66-50 lead on a Thompson 3-pointer with 2:01 left in the half.

The Clippers got within nine (90-81) with four minutes left in the third quarter before the Warriors closed the quarter on yet another 17-5 run to pull away.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: No injuries were listed. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Clippers: G Milos Teodosic (L foot plantar fasciitis) was listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action on Thursday, when they face the Spurs at AT&T Center in San Antonio. Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 4 p.m., with tipoff scheduled for 5:05.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Marleau's Absence Looms Large as Sharks Welcome Maple Leafs]]>Mon, 30 Oct 2017 17:10:54 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/marleau-patrick-leafs.jpg

A former Shark will make his triumphant return to SAP Center on Monday night, alongside his Toronto Maple Leafs teammates, as his career appears to be winding down. Taking the ice will undoubtedly remind him of some great memories, including his role in the Sharks' first-ever run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2016.

But enough about Roman Polak.

In case you've been off the grid since July, the real headline-grabber ahead of San Jose's matchup with Toronto is the homecoming of Mr. Shark himself, Patrick Marleau. He's only the longest-serving, highest-scoring, and arguably most-popular player in the team's 26-year history.

Those factors alone left massive skates for the Sharks to fill when Marleau signed with Toronto on July 2, but his on-ice production is missed even more at this point in the season.

His 27 goals in all situations were the third-most of any Sharks player last season. So, too, were his 20 goals at even strength. Without Marleau, the Sharks ranked 25th and 27th, respectively, in the league entering Sunday.

Logan Couture's picked up most of that load, and his eight goals through the first ten games of the season are one shy of Marleau's franchise record. Joonas Donskoi's chipped in, too, with three goals in his last five games, all at even strength.

That's about it, though. Kevin Labanc and Timo Meier, identified as young players whose growth would offset Marleau's departure, have combined for four goals this season, and Labanc scored just once since scoring two on opening night. Mikkel Boedker has one goal in 10 games.

The old standbys have started slowly, too. Brent Burns and Joe Pavelski, the only two Sharks that scored more than Marleau last year, have scored zero and two goals, respectively. Marleau, meanwhile, has four goals for the Maple Leafs this season, albeit just two since opening night.

San Jose's scoring slump is the biggest culprit behind their back-and-forth start to the season, and Marleau's absence has exacerbated that slump. After all, the Sharks weren't exactly a scoring juggernaut with Marleau on the roster last year, when their 219 goals ranked just 19th in the league.

It's far too early to say the Sharks erred in letting Marleau walk, but the risks of doing so have been on full display this season. A team that struggled to score last year lost one of its best scorers, chose to rely on internal options to take his place, and hasn't matched that production.

With 72 games left in the season, there's still plenty of time for that to happen. So far, it hasn't, and seeing Marleau suit up at SAP Center in another uniform on Monday will serve as a stark reminder.

Photo Credit: Marcus White]]>
<![CDATA[Couture's Clutch Goal Saves the Day in Sharks' Win]]>Sat, 28 Oct 2017 22:55:03 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/160*252/couture.jpg


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Logan Couture scored with 3:52 remaining in the third period Saturday, sending the San Jose Sharks to a 3-2 victory over the Buffalo Sabres.

Joonas Donskoi and Chris Tierney also scored for the Sharks to back goalie Aaron Dell, who made 30 saves. San Jose went 3-2-0 on a five-game road trip and recorded its first regulation win in Buffalo since Dec. 2, 2005.

Ryan O'Reilly and Jason Pominville had goal for the Sabres, and Robin Lehner stopped 28 shots. Buffalo has lost two straight and is 1-3-1 at home.

Couture scored the winner on a wrist shot from the left circle that went over Lehner's shoulder. Tierney had made it 2-2 with 11.6 seconds left in the second period, scoring from the edge of the crease on a rebound from Melker Karlsson's shot.

Donskoi scored nine seconds after skating out of the penalty box to give the Sharks a 1-0 lead nine minutes into the game. Donskoi got a breakaway after Sabres defenseman Matt Tennyson missed a pass at the blue line and beat Lehner with a wrist shot to the top corner for his third of the season.

The Sabres appeared to tie it late in the first period, but Jack Eichel's goal was disallowed after the Sharks challenged for goaltender interference. Replays showed that Buffalo's Sam Reinhart skated through the crease and made contact with Dell's blocker before Eichel shot.

Buffalo evened the score game on O'Reilly's power-play goal 2:55 into the second period. Kyle Okposo set up O'Reilly for his fourth of the year on a slap shot from the left circle. The goal ended a streak of 21 straight penalties killed for the Sharks.

Pominville scored his sixth goal to put the Sabres ahead 2-1 with 5:09 left in the second period. Eichel chipped the puck back to the high slot, where Pominville wristed a shot between Dell's blocker and the near post.

NOTES: Sharks C Joe Thornton had a five-game point streak end. He entered the game tied with Jari Kurri for 20th on the NHL's career points list with 1,398. . Sabres D Justin Falk did not play but is nearing a return, coach Phil Housley said. Falk sustained an undisclosed injury at the end of training camp. . The Sharks went 0 for 3 on the power play and are now 2 for 19 in road games this season. . San Jose has played nine of its first 10 games agains Eastern Conference opponents. . Sabres star C Jack Eichel turned 21 on Saturday.


Sharks: Host Maple Leafs on Monday night.

Sabres: At Arizona on Thursday night.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Thornton's Goal in Boston Return Spoiled by Sharks' Loss]]>Thu, 26 Oct 2017 20:11:49 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-recap-us.jpg


BOSTON - Danton Heinen scored both goals and Anton Khudobin made 36 saves to lift the Boston Bruins to a 2-1 win over the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night.

Joe Thornton scored for San Jose, which went 0 for 6 on the power play. The Sharks had one in the final two minutes after Brandon Carlo went off for slashing and got three shots while creating havoc in front of Khudobin but couldn't capitalize.

Heinen scored his second of the game and broke a second-period tie when he tucked a shot inside the left post after Marc -Edouard Vlasic misplayed the puck in the corner at 13:27.

Thornton tied the score at 1 when he scored on the power play and slipped the puck past a screened Khudobin to tie Jari Kurri for 20th all-time on the NHL scoring list with 1,398 points.

Khudobin made his third consecutive start for Tuukka Rask, who his recovering from a concussion and is expected to return Saturday.

Heinen scored short-handed and notched his first career goal when he knocked in the rebound of David Backes' shot and beat Martin Jones at 9:41 of the first period.

Jones made 31 saves and had won four straight and only allowed five goals in the last four games.

NOTES: The Sharks moved to 2-2-0 on their five game road trip. ... Kevan Miller returned to the lineup after missing one game while David Krejci missed his second straight game for Boston. ... San Jose has killed 15 straight penalties but has scored only once in its last 16 power plays. ... Backes got his first point of the season.


Sharks: At Buffalo on Saturday.

Bruins: Host Los Angeles on Saturday.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors Come Up Clutch, Get Past Raptors in Wild Win]]>Wed, 25 Oct 2017 23:06:01 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/warriorswin2.jpg

OAKLAND -- They were sloppy and they blew several leads, yet the Warriors found a way at the end Wednesday night to swipe a 117-112 win over the Toronto Raptors.

Four Warriors scored in double figures, led by 30 points from Stephen Curry. Kevin Durant put in 29, Klay Thompson 22 and Draymond Green 15.

The Warriors (3-2) managed to overcome 16 turnovers and a 42-37 rebounding deficit to post their first back-to-back victories this season.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: On a night when many made positive contributions, no one made more of a comprehensive impact than Green.

Green’s line: 15 points (4-of-7 shooting from the field, 1-of-2 from deep, 6-of-6 from the line) 11 rebounds, six assists, two steals and countless disruptions of the Toronto offense. Despite six turnovers, he was plus-11 over 37 minutes.

TURNING POINT: Four times, the Warriors built double-digit leads and each time the Raptors rallied back, finally taking a 104-103 lead on a Kyle Lowry 3-pointer with 6:03 remaining.

Not until the Warriors, down 112-107 with 90 seconds remaining, went on a 10-0 run over the final 88 seconds, to the delight of the sellout crowd at Oracle Arena, was the game secured.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: No injuries listed. C JaVale McGee was a healthy inactive. C Damian Jones was assigned to G-League Santa Cruz.

Raptors: C Lucas Nogueira (L ankle sprain) and C Jonas Valanciunas (L ankle sprain) were listed as out.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Friday night, when they face the Washington Wizards at Oracle Arena.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Thompson's Fire Relief Pledge 'Goes Way Beyond Basketball']]>Wed, 25 Oct 2017 14:55:18 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/thompson-klay-presser-finals.jpg

OAKLAND -- Klay Thompson's NBA reputation is of someone who has never known a shot he didn't want to take. There can be benefits, though, the first of which is to provide scoring for the Warriors.

But there is a greater cause, at least for the moment. Thompson is aiming higher than merely his team. He's shooting for humanity.

For each point Thompson scores during the three-game homestand that begins Wednesday night against the Toronto Raptors, he will donate $1.000 to the relief effort in the wake of the North Bay fires.

"I've been here for seven years," he said Wednesday morning after shootround. "I know a lot of people who in the North Bay come to watch us play. A lot of them lost their homes and everything they had, even loved ones."

Thompson said he jumped at the opportunity to help after his agent, Greg Lawrence, conceived the idea behind "Points with a Purpose." Anta, the company that provides Thompson's footwear and apparel, will match the funds generated by its star.

Outside donations, through pledgeit.org/klay, are encouraged. The goal is to raise $250,000 and more than half that amount has been pledged.

"I wanted to be big in the community, in the Bay Area, so this is a great step toward that," Thompson said. "Any positivity you can bring into the world, and it doesn't matter if it affects one person or 100 people, it's a great thing to do. It goes way beyond basketball."

Through four games this season, Thompson is averaging 21.0 points. His streak of 58 consecutive games with at least one 3-pointer is the longest active streak in the NBA.

Photo Credit: Monte Poole]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Rally to Win on Game's Final Play]]>Thu, 19 Oct 2017 20:47:43 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/TDwynnyr.jpg

Finally, in a must-win game, the Raiders played like the Raiders.

After losing four straight games and falling into the basement of the AFC West, Oakland rallied from nine points down in the fourth quarter to beat the division-leading Kansas City Chiefs Thursday night, 31-30.

The tying touchdown came on the last play of the game, with time already wiped off the clock because of a defensive penalty. Derek Carr’s 2-yard pass to Michael Crabtree tied the game at 30-all, then Giorgio Tavecchio kicked the extra point for the win.

It was a wild finish, with the Raiders appearing to get the tying touchdown twice before Crabtree’s actual score. First, Jared Cook pulled down a long throw and rolled into the end zone, which was signaled as a TD – but was waved off after replays should he landed at the half-yard line. Then, Carr’s apparent scoring pass to Crabtree was negated by an offensive pass-interference call against Crabtree. Then the Chiefs were flagged twice for defensive holding, keeping the game alive.

Finally, the Raiders were able to pull out the win.

The Raiders now are 3-4, while the Chiefs fall to 5-2. A loss by Oakland Thursday night could have killed the team’s hopes for a second straight trip to the playoffs.

The Raiders offense, dormant during the four-game losing streak – in which it scored an average of just over 13 points – came alive Thursday night. Carr completed 29-of-52 throws for 417 yards and three touchdowns, without an interception. His favorite target was wideout Amari Cooper, who had pretty much been absent from the offense all season. But on Thursday, Cooper had 11 catches for 210 yards and two touchdowns, from 38 and 45 yards.

The Raiders’ No. 1 running back, Marshawn Lynch, was ejected early for unsportsmanlike conduct, leaving the running game to DeAndre Washington (who rushed for one TD) and Jalen Richard.

Now, with a long-sought victory, the Raiders will go on the road next Sunday, Oct. 29, to Buffalo to try to keep the momentum rolling vs. the Bills.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Snap Losing Streak With Last-Second Win Over Chiefs]]>Thu, 19 Oct 2017 23:00:16 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/raiders-1019.jpg

OAKLAND – The Raiders were desperate for a win and played like it.

The offense woke from the dead. The defense showed energy and life.

Had they played like this recently, they would’ve been far better than 2-4. But they got what they earned, as head coach Jack Del Rio likes to say, and faced a virtual must win against the AFC’s finest.

It would take a Herculean effort from quarterback Derek Carr. The Raiders got that. He was nothing short of awesome.

The Chiefs don’t roll over for anyone. Some 2016 magic was required.

They got some, and plenty of it.

The Raiders beat Kansas City 31-30. Carr to Crabtree on an untimed down. And it kept their season alive.

They were so close to 2-5. They walked off the field 3-4, re-energized and in far better shape to face the rest of their season.

That result was earned with an excellent two-minute drill that featured some big moments, including a 39-yard catch and run by Amari Cooper. That was topped a short while later by a 13-yard pass to Jared Cook on 4th-and-11.

The Raiders worked it down to the 1-yard line on a 29-yard strike to Jared Cook. It was called a touchdown on the field, but ruled short of the goal line. That caused a 10-second runoff – Cook was in bounds -- that left eight seconds on the clock. Then Michael Crabtree pushed off. They the Chiefs were called for defensive holding, resulting in one untimed down. Holding gave the Raiders another.

That’s when Carr found Michael Crabtree for a game-tying touchdown. Girgio Tavecchio’s extra point won it.

The Raiders were down nine points to start the fourth quarter, but Tavecchio’s 26-yard field goal a few minutes in made it a one-score game.

The defense got a stop with six minutes left, and gave the offense a chance to win it.

The Raiders went three and out.

So did the Chiefs, courtesy of solid run defense and a Denico Autry/Khalil Mack sack.

The Silver and Black regained possession with 2:25 left and a timeout remaining.

You already know what happened next.

The Raiders offense came back to life Thursday night. Quarterback Derek Carr paced a frenzied attack, as you’d expect, sparked by deep plays missing in recent weeks.

Carr’s rare combination of zip and touch was back on display. He was nothing short of awesome, completing 29-of-52 passes for 417 yards and three touchdowns, in his best game of the season.

Previously slumping receiver Amari Cooper was active early, with touchdown catches on his team’s first two drives.

The home team’s total was hindered by a pair of missed field goals, though yards came in bunches all night.

Even so, it proved tough to compete with Kansas City’s high-powered offense. The Raiders defense created pressure and did some nice things, but gave up too many explosive plays on the night.

Smith hit speedster Tyreek Hill on a 64-yard catch and run for touchdown to cap a three-play, 99-yard drive. Albert Wilson scored from 63 yards out, thanks to a ball tipped back by Keith McGill – it should’ve been intercepted – that went right to Wilson for an easy score.

Welcome back, Amari: Top Raiders receiver Amari Cooper broke out of a prolonged slump with a dynamite performance. He had two huge catches early in the game, and finished with 11 catches for 210 yards and two touchdowns. He also drew a pass interference inside the Kansas City 5-yard line that set up another score.

Report: Penn and Crabtree argue on sideline: Raiders left tackle Donald Penn and receiver Michael Crabtree got into a shoving match on the sideline, according to CBS on-field reporter Tracy Wolfson.

Wolfson said offensive line coach Mike Tice had to break up the exchange. It’s uncertain why the incident began.

Marshawn gets ejected: Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch got ejected for making contact with an official in the second quarter. He came in from the sideline to protect Kansas City cornerback Marcus Peters, who was being confronted for a late hit on quarterback Derek Carr.

Lynch tried to get in the middle of teammates and his good friend and Oakland native, and ended up pushing an official. He will get fined and possibly suspended for the act.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Montana: Clark Appreciates Support From Ex-49ers Teammates]]>Thu, 19 Oct 2017 22:50:54 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/dwightjoe-ap_1.jpg

More than 35 players from the 49ers’ first Super Bowl champion will be in attendance on Sunday at Levi’s Stadium to show support for Dwight Clark, who revealed in March he was diagnosed with ALS.

Clark, 60, will have ample opportunity to reconnect with some of his old friends on Saturday evening and again on Sunday. At halftime, Joe Montana, surrounded by most of the 49ers' 1981 team, will introduce Clark before a video tribute.

Clark is also expected to make some remarks while situated in a suite for the 49ers’ game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Montana and his wife, Jennifer, have remained in close contact with Clark and his wife, Kelly. The Clarks recently watched the Blue Angels in San Francisco with the Montanas during Fleet Week.

“He’s getting pretty inundated with everyone staying in touch with him at this point,” Montana said on The 49ers Insider Podcast.

“It’s fun for him. At one point, he was telling his wife, Kelly, ‘This is what it’s all about. This is what I want and what I miss, seeing the guys.’ So any of the guys reaching out to him, he surely appreciates it.”

Montana said Clark has not lost his positive outlook or his sense of humor, as evidenced by some not-fit-for-print words he recently had about his wheelchair. Montana said there are always some good laughs and stories any time Clark gets together with his friends.

“That’s the fun part," Montana said. “You just try to get him to forget what’s there, and that you’re there for him whenever. I think the support is the biggest thing right now. In that stage of ALS, it's got to be getting tough, where all of a sudden, things are becoming more and more difficult.”

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders' Marshawn Lynch Ejected for Pushing Referee]]>Thu, 19 Oct 2017 18:13:55 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/marshawn-1019.jpg

ALAMEDA – Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch was ejected from Thursday night's game against the Kansas City Chiefs for making contact with an official.

He was on the sideline to start a 3rd-down-and-16 play in the second quarter, when a draw was called. Quarterback Derek Carr was stopped quickly, yet Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters delivered a late hit many Raiders didn't appreciate.

A scuffle ensued, and Lynch ran on to the field to enter the fray. You can't do that.

It seemed like he was getting between Raiders teammates and Peters, Lynch's good friend and fellow Oakland native. He made contact with an official during the incident, and seemed to push him before realizing the man was wearing stripes.

He was ejected by rule and forced to leave the field immediately. Lynch will be fined $30,387 for making contact with an official and will possibly face a suspension.

The Raiders were granted a first down, but ultimately missed a field goal attempt.

Lynch wasn't active on that drive or the series before, spending that time with his helmet off. The Chiefs were ahead 17-14 when Lynch was ejected. He had two carries for nine yards at the time.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Rockets Stun Warriors in 2017 Season Opener]]>Tue, 17 Oct 2017 23:29:54 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/warriors-1017.jpg

OAKLAND -- After picking up their second championship rings in three seasons, the Warriors took the Oracle Arena court Tuesday night hoping to grab a win.

The Houston Rockets did not play along, riding a fourth-quarter comeback to a 122-121 victory over the defending champions in the season opener.

Four players scored in double figures, led by Nick Young’s 23 points off the bench. Stephen Curry tossed in 22, Kevin Durant’s 20 and Klay Thompson 16.

The losses of Andre Iguodala before the game and Draymond Green after the third quarter were too much for the Warriors to overcome.

Green left with a knee injury after totaling 9 points, a team-high 11 rebounds and a team-high 13 assists in 28 minutes.

STANDOUT PERFORMER: The Warriors were unimpressed with Young’s conditioning at the start of training camp, but surely loved his shooting touch in his debut.

Young’s line: 23 points (8-of-9 shooting, 6-of-7 beyond the arc, 1-of-1 at the line) and one rebound.

Young was signed to provide scoring off the bench, specifically 3-point shooting. He nailed it in his first game as a Warrior.

TURNING POINT: With the Warriors taking a 13-point lead into the fourth quarter and leading 116-109 with 4:14 to play, the Rockets closed the game on a 13-5.

INJURY UPDATE: Warriors: F Draymond Green sustained a left knee strain late in the third quarter and left the game for good. F Omri Casspi (R ankle sprain) was listed as probable and was available to play. F Andre Iguodala (back strain) was listed as questionable and ruled out prior to tipoff.

Rockets: No injuries listed.

WHAT’S NEXT: The Warriors return to action Friday night in New Orleans, where they face the Pelicans at Smoothie King Center. Tipoff is scheduled for 6:35 PDT.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Offense Comes Alive in Victory Over Canadiens]]>Tue, 17 Oct 2017 23:30:08 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-canadiens-win-ap.jpg

SAN JOSE — Logan Couture scored a pair of goals and the San Jose Sharks extended their dominance of the Montreal Canadiens with a 5-2 victory Tuesday night.

Joe Pavelski, Tomas Hertl and Joe Thornton also scored for the Sharks, who have won the past 11 home games against the Canadiens, a streak that dates to Nov. 23, 1999.

Jonathan Drouin and Shea Weber scored for the Canadiens, who are winless since an opening night victory at the Buffalo Sabres.

Martin Jones stopped 28 of 30 shots for the Sharks, who finish their season-opening homestand with a 2-3 record.

Carey Price, who stopped 31 of 35, fell to 2-7-1 in 10 games against the Sharks.

Couture opened the scoring 3:30 into the first period, grabbing a rebound off the back board, skated across the front of the net to get Price to commit and then fired into an open net.

The Canadiens responded 36 seconds later when Drouin picked up a pass from Artturi Lehkonen close in and fired it over Jones' left shoulder and into the net.

Pavelski gave the Sharks the lead for good when he redirected Kevin Labanc's shot just under a minute into the second period. The shot hit Weber's left shin pad and bounced into the net.

Hertl padded the lead midway through the second on a power play. Standing on the right side of the net, he was trying to control a pass from Thornton but the puck fluttered off his stick and got behind Price.

Weber's power-play goal two minutes later kicked off Jones' skates for the score.

The Sharks needed five seconds to score on a power play late in the second period. Tim Heed shot on goal and it bounced off Pavelski's skate. Couture picked it up and found a huge opening.

Thornton scored an empty-net goal in the final minute.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Come up Short Again, Lose Fourth Straight]]>Sun, 15 Oct 2017 15:59:53 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/kahrpikkboltz.jpg

Now that the Raiders have lost their fourth straight game – and with the offense again sputtering in a 17-16 defeat to the visiting Los Angeles Chargers – is it time to ask if Oakland made a mistake in letting go of offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave?

The Raiders offense, which had been explosive the past two seasons, has gone dormant the past month after two solid games to start the season.

The Raiders gained 274 yards Sunday in the loss to their longtime rivals, but had trouble throwing the ball deep or consistently running the ball against what has been a weak run defense.

In 2016, Oakland ranked No. 6 in the NFL in total offense, pumping out 373.3 yards per game. This season, the Raiders went into Sunday’s game averaging 279.2 yars per game, which ranks 30th.

Last season, the Raiders scored 34 and 19 points in two wins over the Chargers; in 2015, Oakland scored 37 and 23 in a pair of victories. Sunday, Oakland could muster two touchdowns, a field goal and a missed extra point by Giorgio Tavechhio that proved to be a killer.

Yesterday’s point total follows games in which the Raiders scored 17, 10 and 10 points.  Clearly, something has gone wrong. Even with the return of starting quarterback Derek Carr against the Chargers after a back injury, Oakland’s offense couldn’t get rolling. Musgrave, meanwhile, is now the quarterbacks coach of the Denver Broncos, who rank 13th in the NFL in total offense.

This past week, Downing said he wasn’t worried.

“I wouldn’t call it concerned,” he told reporters. “I’d call it attention to detail. We’re not concerned. Obviously we’d like to have better results over the last three (now four) weeks, but it doesn’t change our belief or our resolve in what we’re doing.”

Unfortunately for the Raiders, however, if Downing doesn’t figure out what’s going wrong very quickly, this season – which began with high hopes – will be over.  Next up this Thursday night is Kansas City at O.co Coliseum, and a loss to the AFC West-leading Chiefs, who finally lost Sunday to the Steelers to fall to 5-1, would put the Raiders all the way back to 2-5.

On Sunday, Carr was 21-of-30 for 171 yards and a touchdown in his return, but was intercepted twice. Wide receiver Amari Cooper, who’d disappeared from the Raiders game plan, reappeared to make five catches, but for a total of just 28 yards with a long of 8. Over the past two seasons, Cooper was a deep threat. Not in 2017.

Now the Raiders have just three days to prepare for a must-win game against a team that has handled them very well in recent seasons.

Kickoff Thursday is set for 5:25 p.m.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Carr Returns, But Raiders Fall to Last Place in AFC West]]>Sun, 15 Oct 2017 15:51:22 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/raiders-postgame2.jpg


OAKLAND – The Raiders were mired in a three game losing streak heading into Sunday's AFC West clash with the Chargers. Something had to change.

Head coach Jack Del Rio knew it. And had no problem saying it out loud.

"We need (a win) pretty bad," Del Rio said. "If there's a desperation meter, we want it pretty bad."

The Raiders had to turn things around, with margin for error rapidly heading for zero.

Desire was there. Execution, however, was not.

The Raiders lost another one marked with a ‘W' on paper, losing 17-16 to the Los Angeles Chargers at Oakland Coliseum.

Now they're in last place in a tough division, with a few days to rebound for a Thursday night game against Kansas City.

The difference, on the score line at least, was Giorgio Taveccho's missed extra point. Jon Condo sent in a high snap and Marquette King had to rush the hold, and Tavecchio couldn't put it through.

Derek Carr was okay in his return from a back injury. He completed 21-of-30 passes for 171 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions.

The Raiders had a chance to put it away on offense, with up two points with roughly six minutes remaining. They went three and out.

The Chargers marched downfield and set up Nick Novak's 32-yard field goal when time expired.

Defense kept the Raiders in this game early.

Carr's first pass was intercepted, but the defense held strong and forced a field goal attempt that was missed.

They were strong on third down all day, forced a turnover on downs in the first half.

Carr threw a second pick that ended a long drive without points, but Dexter McDonald forced a fumble and David Amerson got it back.

That held a 10-7 halftime lead into the fourth quarter, with a game in the balance late.

Michael Crabtree's 23-yard touchdown catch and run opened the scoring and was the Raiders lone offensive highlight. It capped an 11-play drive dominated by Marshawn Lynch's tough running and short passes, a strategy that didn't hold strong.

Giorgio Tavecchio ended the first half with a 44-yard field goal. He remains perfect on the year.

Things got tense late. Melvin Gordon – who killed the Raiders as a receiver – scored his second touchdown of the day with a 6-yard screen pass. That put the Chargers up for a bit.

Cordarrelle Patterson responded with a 47-yard touchdown run on a jet sweep where he turned the corner, found space and hit the afterburners to score a vital touchdown. Tavecchio missed the extra point, which put the Raiders up two at 16-14.

Marshawn movin' well:Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch was efficient against a lackluster L.A. run defense, fighting through tackles to set a positive early tone.

He finished with 63 yards on 13 carries, his best performance of the year since the season-opener. 

Cooper rets record: Receiver Amari Cooper had four catches for 23 yards in his previous four games. He had 25 yards in two-plus quarters Sunday against the Chargers.

His fourth catch also put him in rarified air. It was the 173rd of his career, more than any Raider over his first three seasons. Running back Marcus Allen previously held that record.

The Raiders got Cooper involved early, with some short passes aimed his way. He finished with five catches for 28 yards, though holding negated a 31-yard strike down the right sideline.

Carr's return: Raiders starting quarterback missed but one game with a transverse process fracture in his back. His return didn't start well. Trevor Williams intercepted his first pass, but the Chargers didn't turn the mistake into points.

He led some successful drives, and ultimately completed 21-of-30 passes for one touchdown and two interceptions.

He wasn't perfect. Carr seemed off target at times, and struggled working the ball downfield.

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Beathard, 49ers Battle Back But Remain Winless]]>Sun, 15 Oct 2017 12:53:17 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/49ers-beathard.jpg

LANDOVER, Md. – Coach Kyle Shanahan targeted Brian Hoyer to be his quarterback on the first day of free agency.

On Sunday, Shanahan felt as if he had no choice but to officially admit his mistake. And the 49ers saw an immediate improvement in the play of their struggling offense.

Rookie C.J. Beathard took over for Hoyer, who was benched in the second quarter after another poor performance, and helped the 49ers rally from a 17-point deficit.

But it ended up being the same old story for the winless 49ers, falling short in their comeback attempt Sunday with a 26-24 loss to Washington at FedEx Field.

Hoyer completed just four of his 11 pass attempts for 34 yards to prompt Shanahan to make the call to the bullpen. Beathard completed 19 of 36 passes for 245 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Beathard did not attempt a pass in the 49ers’ first five games of the season.

The 49ers rallied from a 17-0 deficit to tie the game on Carlos Hyde’s second 1-yard scoring run of the day. The play was set up when Ray-Ray Armstrong stripped former 49ers tight end Vernon Davis after a short completion.

Safety Jimmie Ward scooped up the loose ball and returned it 43 yards to the 1. (The play was originally ruled a touchdown. After a review, referee John Parry announced Ward stepped out of bounds 1 ½ yards from the goal line.)

The 49ers entered the game with four consecutive losses by three points or left. The club was also playing its third road game in three weeks to cap a tumultuous week, which included the team’s decision to release veteran linebacker NaVorro Bowman on Friday.

Two days later, the 49ers moved on from another veteran player – the quarterback who was brought to the team to run Shanahan’s offense. Hoyer previously played under Shanahan while both men were with the Cleveland Browns in 2014.

But Hoyer could not find any consistency once the season began with the 49ers – his seventh team in nine NFL seasons.

Hoyer ranked near the bottom of nearly every passing category. He has completed 119 of 205 pass attempts (58 percent) for 1,245 yards with four touchdowns, four interceptions and a passer rating of 74.1.

Finally, Shanahan had seen enough.

Beathard appeared to provide the 49ers with a spark at the end of the first half after falling behind 17-0. The 49ers drove 75 yards in 11 plays and scored on Hyde’s 1-yard run on fourth down just before halftime.

Washington built a 17-point lead on Kirk Cousins’ two touchdown passes in the first half. Cousins completed 25 of 37 pass attempts for two touchdowns and one interception.

Washington took a 20-17 lead with 10:34 remaining in regulation on a short field goal after the 49ers’ defense stiffened near the goal line on good plays from Ward, Solomon Thomas and Dontae Johnson.

REID RETURNS: Safety Eric Reid returned to action after missing the past three games with a knee injury. But he did not step back into his starting role.

Jaquiski Tartt retained his starting role at strong safety. Reid entered the game when the 49ers went with six defensive backs, mostly in third-down situations.

THIS ‘N’ THAT: Rookie Solomon Thomas recorded his second sack of the season, throwing Cousins for a 5-yard loss in the second quarter.

--The 49ers lost two defensive starters due to injuries. Arik Armstead sustained a hand injury in the second quarter and did not return. Aaron Lynch left with a calf injury in the third quarter that occurred as he was chasing Cousins from the pocket.

--With Reuben Foster declared inactive, the 49ers started Brock Coyle at inside linebacker, alongside Ray-Ray Armstrong. Coyle took over calling the 49ers’ defensive signals in the huddle.

--Robbie Gould made a 52-yard field goal in the third quarter to pull the 49ers to within 17-10. It was the 32nd consecutive made field goal for Gould, dating back to the 2015 season. But Gould’s streak ended on his next attempt, when he missed wide right from 47 yards.

--Rookie Trent Taylor busted a 39-yard punt return in the third quarter to set the 49ers up at midfield on the drive that ended with Gould’s miss.

--One play after Ward’s interception was overturned on review, cornerback Rashard Robinson made an over-the-shoulder interception of a deep Cousins pass. It was the second interception of Robinson’s career.

--Seven members of the 49ers took a knee and held their hands over their chests during the playing of the national anthem in silent protest of racial inequality in America. Those players were Reid, Marquise Goodwin, Adrian Colbert, Dekoda Watson (inactive), Eli Harold, Armstead and K’Waun Williams.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks Skate Past Sabres, Earn First Win of 2017 Season]]>Fri, 13 Oct 2017 00:55:48 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/sharks-recap-us.jpg


SAN JOSE -- Timo Meier scored late in the second period, lifting the San Jose Sharks over Jason Pominville and the Buffalo Sabres 3-2 on Thursday night.

Pominville scored twice for the Sabres, who dropped to 0-2-1 to begin coach Phil Housley's first season.

Martin Jones made 23 saves in San Jose's first victory this season, holding strong after Meier's tiebreaking goal at 14:30 of the second. Meier knocked in a far-side shot for his first goal of the season.

San Jose's Tomas Hertl opened the scoring during a power play at 2:15 of the first. Hertl flicked his first of the year past goalie Robin Lehner.

After Pominville tied it, Chris Tierney scored with 4:49 left in the first period, poking in a shot between Lehner and the right post off a behind-the-back pass from Joonas Donskoi.

Pominville scored his second goal at 6:50 of the second, burying one at the end of a 2-on-1 break with Jack Eichel.

The Sabres blew a great scoring chance midway through second in a 2-2 game, failing to capitalize on overlapping tripping penalties on Justin Braun and Brent Burns that left them with a 5-on-3 advantage for 47 seconds.

Going into Thursday, the Sabres were 8-1-1 in their last 10 games against the Sharks. Buffalo is 24-8-6 all-time against San Jose.

NOTES: Lehner had 23 saves. ... Sabres F Evander Kane played in his 500th career game. ... The Sharks placed D Paul Martin on injured reserved (ankle) and called up D Joakim Ryan from the San Jose Barracuda. Ryan made his NHL debut.


Sabres: At the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night.

Sharks: Host the New York Islanders on Saturday night.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Former Giants Pitcher Noah Lowry Among Wildfire Evacuees]]>Mon, 09 Oct 2017 21:03:44 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/171*120/noah+lowry-1009.jpg

Former San Francisco Giants pitcher Noah Lowry and his family were among those who had to flee from the ferocious series of wildfires in Northern California.

Lowry told The Associated Press that he, his wife, his two daughters and his 2-week-old son had to leave their home in Santa Rosa in a matter of minutes as the flames approached.

Lowry says he "can't shake hearing people scream in terror as the flames barreled down on us."

He said he ran into a closed Highway 101 freeway because the flames had jumped it. But he and his family were able to get away in time and get to a friends' house where they are staying.

Lowry, who pitched for the Giants from 2003 and 2007, now owns an outdoor sporting goods store in Santa Rosa.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Bay Area

Photo Credit: Getty Images file]]>
<![CDATA[Penn Confronts Angry Fans After Raiders' Third Loss in a Row]]>Sun, 08 Oct 2017 18:13:54 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/penn-twitter_1.jpg

The Raiders came into the 2017 season with Super Bowl aspirations. After three straight losses, giving the Raiders a 2-3 record on the year, tensions are running high in Oakland. 

With enough issues on the field, the Raiders found a new one off the gridiron between player and fans in the Coliseum parking lot. As Donald Penn was pulling out of the parking lot after the team's 30-17 loss vs. the Ravens, fans started yelling at Penn. 

Penn then got out of the car and started talking back to the fans. Security intervened between Penn and the fans. The confrontation can be seen below.

Warning: NSFW language.

Penn signed a two-year, $21 million contract extension with the Raiders in September. He was named to his second Pro Bowl after the 2016 season.


According to Penn, one of the fans threw a bottle at his car. 


Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[What's Wrong With the Raiders?]]>Sun, 08 Oct 2017 16:52:42 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/ejayysaked.jpg

Whatever happened to the Raiders’ dominant offensive line? Why has Amari Cooper vanished? Can this season be salvaged?

Five games into this 2017 season, the Oakland Raiders are derailed. They’ve lost three straight games after winning their first two in dominant fashion, their starting quarterback is on the sideline with an injury and the pass protection and run blocking aren’t close to being what was expected going into this season.

On Sunday at the Oakland Coliseum, the Baltimore Ravens had a fairly easy time with the Raiders, taking home a 30-17 decision. Since the Raiders were surprised by Washington in Week 3, they haven’t seemed like the same team.

Now, the Raiders will need to rebound this coming Sunday against an AFC West foe, the Chargers, if they hope to get back to .500 and make a run to the playoffs over the final 10 games.

Against the Ravens, Oakland fell behind quickly, 14-0. Vince Mayle’s 2-yard run gave Baltimore its first touchdown, and then a mistake by Jared Cook gave Baltimore a gift. EJ Manuel – starting in place of Derek Cook – completed a short pass to Cook, who lost the ball when he was hit. The ball was picked up by cornerback Jimmy Smith, who returned it 47 yards for the 14-0 lead.

The Raiders were forced to play catch-up, and never were able to gain control of the game. A 41-yard pass from Manuel to Michael Crabtree before halftime gave Oakland its first TD, and Marshawn Lynch’s 3-yard run in the third quarter got the Raiders within a touchdown, down 24-17. But Baltimore responded with two field goals to put away the game and improve its record to 3-2.

Manuel finished 13-of-26 for 159 yards and a score with no interceptions. His prime target was Crabtree, who had six catches for 82 yards.

But the offensive line allowed Manuel to be sacked three times and could only spring the running attack for 108 yards, hardly what the team had in mind going into this season.

Meanwhile, Cooper again was a nonfactor. He had just one catch for eight yards and Manuel threw to him only twice. After catching five passes in the season opener and four in Game 2, he’s had games with one, two and one catches over the past three. If the Raiders offense is going to get on a roll again – it’s now scored fewer than 20 points for three straight games -- Cooper is going to have to become a bigger part of the passing game again.

The Raiders will host the Los Angeles Chargers this coming Sunday at 1:25 p.m.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Unable to Overcome Early Deficit, Lose 3rd Straight]]>Sun, 08 Oct 2017 15:41:12 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-859124416_594_screen.jpg

OAKLAND – This Raiders season started so well. The first two games went according to plan, easy victories that supported 2017’s lofty expectations.

Then the wheels came off. The Raiders got beat soundly by Washington. They couldn’t keep pace with Denver. And then got owned by the Baltimore Ravens at home.

Sunday’s 30-17 result had little to do with quarterback Derek Carr being sidelined with a bad back. EJ Manuel played well enough.

The Raiders defense got beat time and again on third down, and rarely kept the Ravens off the scoreboard.

The Silver and Black are below .500 following a three-game losing streak that has changed the course of season’s first half.

Sunday’s game was a ‘W’ on paper, especially after Baltimore got beat soundly the past two weeks. It didn’t play out that way.

The Raiders fell down two scores in a flash, and never recovered.

Joe Flacco hit Mike Wallace on a 52-yard bomb to start the game and never looked back. The Ravens scored on their opening possession and the Raiders’ first drive, thanks to a Jared Cook fumble Jimmy Smith returned 46 yards for a touchdown.

Baltimore scored on defense and its first three possessions to take a commanding 24-10 halftime lead.

The Raiders’ lone first-half highlight came on a broken play. Manuel bought time in the pocket and threw a 41-yard touchdown strike to Michael Crabtree. That cut the Ravens lead to 21-10.

Baltimore’s offense made it tough to catch up, with one scoring drive after another.

That didn’t stop the Raiders from trying. The deficit dipped to one score late in the third quarter with a Marshawn Lynch touchdown run. Manuel made that drive happen with two key third-down conversions using his legs.

The Ravens re-established their two-score lead with a field goal on the following drive.

The Raiders never got close, and lost their third straight contest.

Smith gets beat (early and often): The Raiders were down David Amerson and Gareon Conley heading into this one, leaving Sean Smith in a vital role at outside cornerback. He has proven vulnerable to speed in the past, and the Ravens capitalized on it. Mike Wallace beat Smith deep twice in the first half on drives that became Ravens touchdowns.

The Raiders couldn’t adjust much with so few defensive backs available, putting them at risk most of the day.

Cooper’s slump continues: Amari Cooper’s unproductive run continued against the Ravens. He had one catch for eight yards in this one, fourth-straight poor performance by the two-time Pro Bowler.

Carr a no-go: Raiders quarterback Derek Carr pushed to be available for Sunday’s game despite suffering a transverse process fracture the week before, but was ultimate ruled inactive as expected.

He should be back in time to play the Los Angeles Chargers next week.

Raiders shift to Manuel: EJ Manuel started in Derek Carr’s place Sunday afternoon, and wasn’t half bad. Buoyed by a strong running game, he was able to connect on some passes and finished 13-of-26 passing for 159 yards and one touchdown.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Carr Quickly Returns to Raiders Practice, Ahead of Schedule]]>Thu, 05 Oct 2017 14:44:40 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/carr-pratice.jpg

Raiders quarterback Derek Carr isn't expected to play Sunday's game versus Baltimore. A transverse process fracture in his back eliminated that prospect.

Head coach Jack Del Rio said Monday his team captain could be out 2-6 weeks.

Left tackle Donald Penn spoke with Carr this morning. The Pro Bowl left tackle said Carr's "very ahead of schedule."

That statement was supported at Thursday's practice. Carr was seen working during open portions of that practice, stretching with the team and making throws during individual drills.

That doesn't change the fact EJ Manuel will start Sunday at Oakland Coliseum.

There is a prospect, however, that Carr might return in time to play the L.A. Chargers in Week 6. That game comes 14 days after he got hurt in a 16-10 loss to Denver, just under the light side of Del Rio's recovery timetable.

Quarterbacks Cam Newton and Tony Romo suffered transverse process fractures in 2014, and both guys missed just one game. Each injury is different, but that shows precedent for a quick rebound.

Carr certainly wants to come back quickly, especially after two disappointing performances in consecutive losses. So much of the back, lower body and torso is involved in throwing a football, so some limited activity. Carr must prove to the staff he's right and healthy, but an ability to practice so quickly after the injury, even in a limited capacity, is a positive sign.

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Jones Allows 4 Goals, Sharks Fall to Flyers in Season Opener]]>Wed, 04 Oct 2017 21:31:32 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/sharks+flyers-1004.jpg

Martin Jones and the Sharks opened up their regular season slate with a 5-3 home loss in San Jose as they couldn't fight off the Flyers' attack.

Jones allowed four goals.

For the Sharks, Kevin Labanc scored twice and Logan Couture also found the back of the net.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders' Carr Has Fracture in Back, May Miss 2-6 Weeks ]]>Mon, 02 Oct 2017 23:32:18 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/carr-injury-ap.jpg

ALAMEDA – Derek Carr's ailing back was X-rayed during Sunday's loss to the Denver Broncos, shortly after he got wrenched to the ground and kneed near the injury site. That scan didn't show anything significant.

The Raiders quarterback had an MRI Monday morning. Those images proved inconclusive. A CT scan showed something wrong.

Those images helped diagnose Carr with a transverse process fracture in his back.

Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio announced Carr's injury during his Monday afternoon press conference.

A transverse process is a protrusion of bone on each side of every vertebrae of the spine. It helps attach muscles and ligaments of the spine.

He said typical recovery is 2-6 weeks.

Other quarterbacks have been impacted by this injury. Tony Romo suffered fractures in a game and Cam Newton had them occur in a car crash. Both players missed just one game.

Even in the best-case scenario, that means backup EJ Manuel will start next week's game against the Baltimore Ravens at least.

"Derek is a great kid. He'll bounce back," Del Rio said. "I told him the team will take care of business while he's healing. When he can come back, he'll come back."

Del Rio said Carr had back spasms on Sunday night, but further testing revealed further damage.

"It's something that caused the spasms," Del Rio said. "He got several tests, and the last one came back (showing a fracture)."

Carr is the team's unquestioned leader, its public face. Losing him for any stretch is a setback to a scuffling Raiders offense and the team as a whole.

"It's always a big blow to lose a good player, a key player, a quarterback," Del Rio said. "The good news is that he's not done for the year. We'll get him back. It could be a short as two weeks. It could be longer. We'll see. We'll deal with that as it goes."

Manuel will take over as the interim starter. He played well after Carr went down late in the third quarter. He completed 11-of-17 passes for 106 yards and an interception that ended a Raiders comeback bid.

Manuel played well outside the pick, and threw a near-perfect ball that Jared Cook couldn't corral in the end zone.

"EJ gave us a chance there at the end and did some things really well," Del Rio said. "There are some definite positive, encouraging signs that we can build on."

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Back Injury For Raiders' Carr Not Considered Long Term]]>Sun, 01 Oct 2017 17:49:49 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/raiders+carr-1001.jpg

DENVER – Derek Carr surveyed his the pattern, and saw Raiders receivers covered well. The Pro Bowl quarterback tried to create space with his feet and tried to take off.

The Broncos didn't let that happen. Shelby Harris knocked him off balance. Adam Gotsis finished him off, tackling him by the neck. It put tremendous strain on his back. And pulled him from the game.

The Raiders believe it won't keep him out long, if at all.

Head coach Jack Del Rio said Carr had back spasms.

"It should be something that cleans up quickly," Del Rio said.

Carr rebutted Del Rio's diagnosis some after a 16-10 loss to the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field.

"I'm glad he knows," Carr said. "That's awesome. That sounds good to me."

Carr remains optimistic he'll get a green light next week against Baltimore. He had X-Rays during the game that turned up negative for structural damage. Carr tried to loosen his back, but didn't feel comfortable enough to return.

"I just wanted some pain to wear off and just go from there," Carr said. "I came in there and had them work on it. I tried to throw, but it just wasn't ready. Yet. That's not to say it won't be. It just wasn't ready today. I tried to do anything I could to be out there, but I just couldn't do it."

Carr would guarantee a return next week, but will push to play. He was clearly in pain after the game, but hoped the issue would subside quickly.

"(I don't feel) too good, but neither does anyone in the NFL," Carr said. "We're going to do the treatment and all those kinds of things. Y'all know me. It's going to take a lot to keep me off the field."

That's great news for the Raiders, who are completely reliant on their franchise quarterback for success. Fear struck when No. 4 went down, but news of his health brought the locker room some life after a disappointing loss.

"It felt like the whole sideline got its wind knocked out," defensive lineman Mario Edwards Jr. said. "I talked to him after, and it was great to hear that he's good. We're not worried about it. We're ready to go back to work."

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Same Story for 49ers: Close, But No Victory]]>Sun, 01 Oct 2017 16:29:09 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/fitztdvsninerzz.jpg

The 49ers – once again – came close to winning their first game of the season.

After coming close against the Seahawks and Rams the past two weeks, San Francisco battled the Cardinals in Arizona tough, forcing them to overtime with the score tied 12-12.

The 49ers even took a 15-12 lead over the Cardinals in OT when Robbie Gould made his fifth field goal of the game from 23 yards out.

But when the Cardinals got the ball back with 2:25 left in the extra period at their own 25-yard line, they quickly went to work, marching for a touchdown in seven plays, capped by Carson Palmer’s 19-yard pass to veteran Larry Fitzgerald, to walk away with an 18-15 victory.

The 49ers offense kept stalling, with quarterback Brian Hoyer unable to drive the team for touchdowns instead of field goals. He completed the day 24-of-49 passing for 234 yards with one costly interception. Carlos Hyde led the running game with 68 yards on 16 carries.

San Francisco’s defense, meanwhile, showed much more life. The Niners sacked Palmer six times, with veteran Elvis Dumervil getting two and No. 1 pick Solomon Thomas the first of his NFL career. San Francisco also held the Cards to just 51 yards rushing.

Still, the defense couldn’t hold on late, with a victory for the taking.

After the 49ers had to settle for Gould’s field goal to take the 15-12 lead – unable to convert on third-and goal from the 5 when Hoyer’s pass fell incomplete – Palmer went to work. He twice completed 11-yard passes to Andre Ellington to start the drive, then connected with Jaron Brown for 17 yards, and again to Brown for 11 to the 49ers’ 25. Three plays later, 49ers safety Jimmie Ward was called for pass interference, giving Arizona a first down on the 27. Palmer then passed to Ellington for 8 yards to set up his game-winning throw to Fitzgerald.

Just before the game, the 49ers gathered for the national anthem as a team, with 30 players kneeling with their hands over their hearts, and the rest of the team standing behnd them, also with their hands over their hearts. The players were kneeling to protest what they believe is unfair treatment of African-Americans by law enforcement in the U.S., even in the face of recent criticism by President Donald Trump, who said all NFL players who kneel for the anthem should be "fired."

The 49ers, now 0-4 under new head coach Kyle Shanahan, will travel to Indianapolis next Sunday to take on the Colts.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Lose Carr, Then Lose to Broncos]]>Sun, 01 Oct 2017 16:07:52 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/denkahrrr.jpg

The Raiders lost a game they really wanted to win Sunday in Denver, falling 16-10.

But maybe worse was the loss of quarterback Derek Carr.

Late in the third quarter, Carr went down hard and suffered a back injury. He had to leave the game and was replaced by E.J. Manuel. Carr’s back appeared to be twisted by the Broncos’ Adam Gostis as he was spun to the turf.

There was no immediate diagnosis of Carr’s injury. At the time, Carr was 10-of-18 for 143 yards and a touchdown.

The loss drops the Raiders to 2-2. After Oakland started the season 2-0, the team has suffered consecutive ugly losses to Washington and Denver where the offense – which looked dynamic the first two games – hasn’t been in sync.

Going into Sunday's game in Denver, Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio had said his team needed to bounce back strong against an AFC West rival. It didn't happen.

The Raiders fell behind early, 10-0 in the first quarter. They closed the gap on Carr’s 64-yard scoring throw to Johnny Holton in the second quarter, but then the Broncos added two field goals in the third period to extend their lead to 16-7. Oakland managed just a 38-yard field goal by Giorgio Tavecchio in the fourth period.

The Raiders acquired Manuel this offseason from Buffalo to give them some more firepower off the bench should Carr be injured – as he was late last year just before the playoffs.  Manuel completed 11-of-17 throws for 106 yards, but was intercepted.

The real problem Sunday was the Broncos defense, which had the upper hand all day. Oakland’s running game was smothered, managing just 24 net yards. Marshawn Lynch had only 12 yards on nine carries.

Suddenly, the Raiders have gone from looking like a sure-fire playoff team – and a possible Super Bowl contender – to a team with big problems a quarter of the way through the season.

The Raiders will try to rebound this coming Sunday in Oakland against the Baltimore Ravens.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[49ers Stunned by Cardinals in Overtime, Fall to 0-4]]>Sun, 01 Oct 2017 21:47:31 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/Week4_49ers_Gallery_5.jpg

GLENDALE, Ariz. – One week after falling short in an offensive shootout, the 49ers settled into a kickers’ duel on Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals and old friend Phil Dawson.

The Cardinals scored the only touchdown of the game on in overtime for the margin of victory in Arizona’s 18-15 victory, as Kyle Shanahan remains in search of his first victory as an NFL head coach.

Gould, who replaced Dawson this season, made field goals of 49, 39, 47, 48 and 32 yards to run his streak of consecutive made field goals to 28 dating back to the 2015 season.

Dawson’s made field goals came from 29, 43, 50 and 32 yards.

After Gould's field goal gave the 49ers a 15-12 lead in OT, Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer hit wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald for the game-winning touchdown with 37 seconds remaining.

The matchup was the third NFC West game in three weeks for the 49ers, who lost to the Seattle Seahawks and Los Angeles Rams in back-to-back weeks by a combined five points. The 49ers, who did not score any touchdowns in the first two games of the season, fell short in a 41-39 loss to the Rams in Week 3.

But the 49ers could not ride that offensive momentum against the Cardinals. The offense sputtered for most of the game, as the 49ers began a three-game swing of road games. The team travels to Indianapolis next week before going to Washington for an Oct. 15 game.

Quarterback Brian Hoyer and the 49ers’ offense struggled to string plays together. He took some hits, had some miscommunications with his receivers and was off the mark on some of his attempts. He completed 24 of 49 passes for 234 yards with no touchdowns and one interception.

Running back Carlos Hyde, who entered the game as the NFL’s third-leading rusher, finished with 68 yards on 16 rushing attempts.

Palmer took his share of hits, too. Arizona had to piece things together on the left side of its offensive line with injuries to left tackle D.J. Humphries and guards Mike Iupati and Alex Boone.

Palmer completed 33 of 51 pass attempts for 357 yards with one touchdown and one interception.

INJURY REPORT: Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin left the game in the first half with head and eye injuries and was later diagnosed with a concussion. It is particularly bothersome because Goodwin was twice diagnosed with concussions last season while with the Buffalo Bills.

Rookie safety and core special-teams player Adrian Colbert sustained a hamstring injury in the second quarter and was ruled out for the game.

BETHEA PICKS OFF HOYER: Former 49ers safety Antoine Bethea intercepted the 20th pass of his career, and few were probably as easy as the gift he received late in the first half.

Receiver Trent Taylor went to the ground on an out-breaking route, as Hoyer lofted a gentle pass down the field. Bethea made the easy interception and returned it 16 yards. Shanahan argued vehemently that Taylor went down due to illegal contact.

The play set up Dawson’s 43-yard field goal to pull the Cardinals even at 6-6 with 1:29 remaining in the first half.

Bethea intercepted five passes during his three seasons with the 49ers. He signed with the Cardinals after the 49ers released him in March.

THIS ‘N’ THAT: Rookie defensive lineman Solomon Thomas recorded the first sack of his career. Thomas threw Palmer for a 2-yard loss on a third-and-10 play to force a Cardinals punt late in the first half. Thomas was the No. 3 overall selection in the draft.

--The 49ers thwarted the Cardinals’ opening-drive scoring chance when linebacker Ray-Ray Armstrong intercepted a Palmer pass that originally deflected off the hands of 49ers cornerback Rashard Robinson.

--Defensive lineman DeForest Buckner, who defensive coordinator Robert Saleh predicted would break through in the sack column, recorded his first sack of the season, too.

--Rookie quarterback C.J. Beathard made his NFL debut in the third quarter. He entered the game for one play when Hoyer left after taking a big hit. Beathard handed off to Hyde, who gained 15 yards on the play. Hoyer returned for the next snap.

--Hall of Fame quarterback Kurt Warner was honored at halftime. He concluded his remarks, saying it’s appropriate that he’s being honored in a game in which the Cardinals are facing the 49ers because no other team is as responsible for him earning this honor. Warner threw for 3,807 yards and 24 touchdowns in 14 career games against the 49ers.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Cain 'More Than Satisfied' in Final Big League Start]]>Sat, 30 Sep 2017 18:51:52 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/cain-giants-12324.JPG

Matt Cain walked into the clubhouse Saturday morning and found himself confronted by … Matt Cain. A whole lot of Matt Cain.

Every TV in the clubhouse was showing a Cain highlight reel filled with his postseason strikeouts, moments from early in his career, and the most memorable plays of his perfect game. Cain thought it was awkward. He also thought it was kind of cool. He snuck a peak for a few minutes before changing the channel on the television hanging over his locker. A few hours later, he surprised even himself when he added one last gem to a highlight reel full of them.

Cain went out with five shutout innings in the 331st and final start of his big league career. On a day full of emotion and ovations, he let the crowd and his teammates carry him to the finish line.

“I’m more than satisfied,” he said, his voice cracking at times. “I was kind of surprised to get that far into the game. I’m pretty proud of being able to go out there and throw five innings today, but that honestly was the excitement of the fans and my teammates pushing me along. That didn’t have anything to do with me. I was riding their wave.”

For so many years, the Giants let Cain keep them afloat. The 2002 draftee spent 13 seasons in the big leagues, helping build the base of the sport’s latest dynasty. Cain will forever be remembered in this ballpark for his durability, his postseason success, and the night he was perfect. But for his teammates, he’ll be remembered for much more than that. He was the consummate leader, a prankster who kept the room loose, a mentor, and a player credited with bringing title teams together. There might have been some doubt about how long Cain would last in his first appearance since August 31, but there was no doubt about the way he would be received after his final big league pitch.

“Guys were crying in the dugout,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “That’s how much they care about the guy.”

So many parts of this day lined up perfectly. Cain spent days wondering if Ted Barrett, the home plate umpire for his perfect game, would be on this crew. When he got to the park Friday, he found that Barrett was indeed lined up for his final start. Barrett watched as Cain walked off the field for the final time, and in a fitting touch, Cain began and ended the celebration by hugging the two players who will now take over as the longest-tenured Giants.

Buster Posey was waiting for Cain at the dugout entrance, and he delivered one final Buster Hug. Madison Bumgarner was waiting at the end of the line of teammates. He wrapped Cain in a bear hug, lifting him off the ground. The two have been close friends since the moment Bumgarner burst into camp, when he asked Cain — the veteran — how to pitch to Manny Ramirez. Cain told him to throw heaters inside. Bumgarner promptly went out and repeatedly threw 96 on the hands. Cain remembered telling himself that he couldn’t wait to hand the reins over to the young lefty.

“I don’t think it could have been more fitting than to have Bum at the end of the line,” Cain said.

The moment came at the end of an inning because of a trait that Cain and Bumgarner are both known for. Physically spent, Cain dug deep to give Bochy just a couple more outs. His day had started with several standing ovations, and he said he rode adrenaline for the first couple of innings. By the third, he was relying on the lone voices that kept breaking through a crowd of 40,000.

“I could hear two or three guys for some reason, going, ‘Come on, Cainer!” he said.

In the dugout, teammates were whispering the same thing. Bochy tried to will him along, but he had Derek Law and Ty Blach warm up just in case. Bochy had originally hoped to pull Cain in the middle of an inning so he could soak in the cheers, but as Cain got through the fourth and into the fifth, he decided the right-hander deserved a shot at career win No. 105. When Cain walked Cory Spangenberg to lead off the fifth, that plan looked shot.

Bochy walked out to the mound, moving quickly to show Cain that a conversation would be had. The infielders gathered on the mound and Bochy asked Cain to be honest about how he felt.

“I think I can get another hitter or two,” he said.

Bochy walked back to the dugout, boos having turned to cheers. Cain looked in at Posey, knowing he had not been entirely truthful.

“I was done,” Cain said. “(But) I told him I could get a couple more outs.”

Cain struck out Austin Hedges and tried to do the same with a two-strike curveball to Jhoulys Chacin. The opposing pitcher rolled it over to short, putting the final touch on a career that lasted 2,085 and 2/3 innings.

Bochy met Cain at the top step of the dugout. He wanted the fans to know that Cain’s day was done and the celebration was on. The ovation lasted about a minute, with Cain putting an exclamation point on it by flinging his hat into the seats. He came back out for a curtain call after the hug with Bumgarner, tears filling his eyes.

What happened next was as predictable as Cain’s ability to gut through one final inning. The Giants blew a lead twice and lost 3-2 to the Padres. Cain finished his career 104-118, with 109 no-decisions as a starter. On many of those nights, he deserved much better.

The fact that Cain never complained about his situation is just a part of his legacy, and it’s a trait that has been passed on to a new generation of Giants pitchers. Bochy hopes Cain continues to teach those lessons, and the Giants expect him to have some kind of future role with the organization.

For now, Cain said he doesn't want to rush into anything. He wants to take a deep breath, take some time with his wife and kids, and figure out the next steps as they come. The organization will celebrate Cain throughout Sunday’s season finale, and he said he hopes to take the mic after the final pitch and thank the fans. It’s a lock that he’ll do it. Bochy said Cain can do whatever he wants on his final day in orange and black.

“He can manage if he wants,” Bochy said, smiling. “Honestly, I haven’t done too well.”

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Giants Pound Padres, Avoid 100 Losses]]>Fri, 29 Sep 2017 22:03:37 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/giants-padres-09090909.JPG

No 100 Losses for Giants

Give the Giants credit for this: They’re not actively tanking.

Actually, depending on your view, you might not give them credit for that. The No. 1 overall pick is a nice prize in June, but the Giants took a step toward No. 2 on Friday night. They hammered the Padres 8-0 to kick off the final series of the year. Combine that with Detroit’s loss to the Twins and you have a tie for last place in the majors. The Tigers own the tiebreaker for the top pick.

The players don’t care about any of this, of course. They were happy to get the offense in gear and ride another strong Chris Stratton performance. They also were surely happy to clinch a season with fewer than 100 losses. Here are some more things you need to know ...

Stratton sets the tone

Stratton was a revelation in the second half, and he finished on a high note. He scattered seven hits and departed to a standing ovation in the seventh, with a runner on. Stratton wasn’t charged with a run in his 6 2/3 innings. He struck out seven and walked two.

Bright spot in bleak season

Stratton’s numbers this season: 4-4, 3.68 ERA, 1.48 WHIP. In five home starts, Stratton had a 1.50 ERA. He was one of the few bright spots this season.

Panik just keeps hitting

Speaking of finishing on a high note, Joe Panik had hits in his first three at-bats and a single in the eighth. Panik has 33 hits in September, which is the third-most in the National League.

Posey orders triple-double

Buster Posey tied a career-high with three doubles and drove in three runs. His previous three-double game was May 5, 2016. Posey and Hunter Pence are the only Giants with three-double games this season.

The year they lost the fans

The final night game of the season was not a sellout. The Giants announced a crowd of 39,863 human beings. This will be remembered in part as the year they officially lost their sellout streak, although they’re expecting a big crowd on Saturday for Matt Cain’s final start.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[A's Winning Streak vs Rangers Ends at Seven ]]>Fri, 29 Sep 2017 21:52:15 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/212*120/Raul-a%27s.JPG

A's finally lose to Rangers

Raul Alcantara’s scoreless streak as a starter came to a halt Friday night, as did the A’s winning streak against the Rangers. 

Shin-Soo Choo hit a two-run homer in the fifth, the last batter Alcantara would face, during a three-run Texas rally that made the difference in the Rangers’ 5-3 win at Globe Life Park. That halted a string of seven consecutive A’s wins over Texas, their most since 2005. 

The A’s trailed 5-0 in the seventh when rookie Renato Nunez connected for his first major league homer, a three-run shot off Martin Perez that pulled the A’s to within 5-3. Nunez, who came in 2-for-10 in six games since being called up, drilled a 1-2 fastball over the wall in right-center. 

Alcantara (1-2) came in having tossed a combined 8 2/3 scoreless innings in emergency spot starts for Sean Manaea and Jharel Cotton. He allowed four runs over 4 1/3 innings on Friday, walking two and striking out two.

Adventures at third

Third baseman Matt Chapman, who has impressed greatly defensively since being called up from Triple-A, was charged with a throwing error and could have been saddled with another error that led to two Rangers runs in the first. Nomar Mazara hit a hard bouncer his way that took a tough hop and got by Chapman. Two runs scored on the play, which originally was scored an error but was quickly changed to a two-run single.

Maxwell's night

Unlike Thursday, when he was in the bullpen during the national anthem, A’s catcher Bruce Maxwell knelt in front of the A’s dugout for the anthem Friday and received louder boos than the night before from the Rangers crowd. Maxwell heard it as he rose to his feet and returned to the dugout right after the anthem, though the boos were only a brief burst. He was out of the lineup but entered the game as a pinch hitter the seventh and grounded out. He did stand during a playing of “God Bless America” during the seventh inning stretch. A security guard stood right next to him facing the crowd.

Fowler recovering well

The A’s are setting up an offseason rehab plan for outfielder Dustin Fowler, a key piece they got from the Yankees in the Sonny Gray trade. Fowler suffered a ruptured patella tendon in his right knee in June while playing in his very first major league game with New York. He’s been in Oakland periodically with the team while rehabbing. 

A’s manager Bob Melvin said Fowler had a follow-up appointment scheduled Friday with Dr. Charles Bush-Joseph, the Chicago-based specialist who performed his surgery. He’ll then return home to Georgia before returning to the A’s later in the winter. There’s hope within the organization that Fowler will be healthy enough in spring training to compete for the center field job. “They’re very happy with where he is right now,” Melvin said.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Manaea Solid as A's Top Rangers in Opener of Final Series]]>Thu, 28 Sep 2017 19:09:59 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/as-manaea-0928.jpg

The A's continued to play solid all around to round out the season and took down the Rangers 4-1 on the road Thursday night in Texas.

Oakland was led by two hits apiece from Khris Davis, Ryon Healy and Matt Chapman. Both Healy and Chapman each drove in two runs.

Sean Manaea earned the win in his final start. He finishes the year 12-10 with a 4.37 ERA.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks' Joel Ward Won't Kneel During Anthem]]>Thu, 28 Sep 2017 17:48:10 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/joel-ward.jpg

Joel Ward will not be the first player in NHL history to take a knee during the national anthem, the Sharks forward announced on Thursday. 

But his announcement came with a heartfelt message for equality and bridging the gap between communities:

"Over the last several days, I have been asked if I would consider kneeeling during the playing of the U.S. national anthem. It's something I have spent a lot of time thinking about.

"As a black man, I have experienced racism both inside and outside of the sporting world. I have been pulled over by law enforcement for no reason. I have been looked at suspiciously because of the color of my skin.

"I hold an immense amount of respect for the many players -- across the sporting world -- that have chosen to peacefully bring attention to a couple of big issues in today's society, which are inequlaity and the use of excessive force against people of color in the United States of America. Make no mistake that racism exists and that people of color are treated differently on a day-to-day basis.

"I also feel that the original message that was trying to be communicated has been lost. The focus has shifted to the act of the kneeling itself or to a protest of the flag or the military. What are we really talking about here?

"I feel extremely lucky to be able to play this great game of hockey, but even within our own game, we can treat each other better than we currently do at all levels of the sport. There is still progress to be made.

"And that's where I want everyone to re-focus their attention -- on moving progress forward. We need to be working on bridging the gap between people of all oclor, and between law enforcement and minorities. How can we be a part of the solution and not a part of the problem -- or be another distraction from what the real issues are?

"Although I fully support those who before me have taken the lead in bringing awareness to these issues, I will not kneel during the national anthem like my brothers have done.

"But now that I have the world's attention, let's meet at the kitchen table, the locker room or in the stands and continue the healing process. Let our collective focus be on bridging the gap between communities -- on working to heal generations of unequal treatment of people of color in the United States of America -- and not turning our backs on that which is hard to face head on.

"I will continue to work within my community to help improve the lives of others, and I intend to partner with groups dedicated to bridging racial inequality and fostering a better relationship between law enforcement and people of all color. 

"If we spend more time talking about these real issues instead of the actions that are taking place in an attempt to raise awareness about them, we will be a much richer and stronger society.

-- Joel Randal Ward

"I believe in the goodness of a free society. And I believe that the society can remain good only as long as we are willing to fight for it, and to fight against whatever imperfections may exist." -- Jackie Robinson

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Giants Blow Lead in Arizona, Suffer Loss No. 97]]>Wed, 27 Sep 2017 23:14:21 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/samard.jpg

PHOENIX — This nightmare season started in Arizona with a blown save. Wednesday’s result, then, was rather appropriate.

Sam Dyson blew a two-run lead in the bottom of the ninth and the Giants fell 4-3 to the Diamondbacks in their final road game of the year. The implosion cost Jeff Samardzija his 10th victory on a day when he threw six strong innings and benefited from three early runs.

Dyson opened the final frame by giving up a leadoff homer to J.D. Martinez, who hits one just about every day now. Joe Panik stole one out with a nifty throw to the plate, but the Diamondbacks loaded the bases and tied the game on a fielder’s choice grounder. Dyson then walked in the winning run.

The loss was No. 97 of the season. Yikes. Anyway, here are some facts from the earlier innings …

Samardzija's final numbers: Samardzija’s second season with the Giants: 32 starts, 9-15, 4.42 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 205 strikeouts, 32 walks. He walked off the mound ranked first in the National League in innings (207 2/3) and sixth in strikeouts. If you look at his FIP (3.60) or xFIP (3.60), Samardzija probably deserved much better this season. Outfield defense, you know?

Samardzija makes franchise history: Samardzija finished the year with a 6.41 strikeout-to-walk ratio, the best mark by a starter in San Francisco Giants history. Juan Marichal (6.17 in 1966) held the previous record.

Frequent flyer miles: Jake Lamb’s solo shot in the fifth was the 30th off Samardzija this year, a career-high. He allowed 29 in 2015 with the White Sox and 24 last season. Samardzija became the fourth NL starter to allow 30 in the Year of the Homer, joining John Lackey, Gerrit Cole and Julio Teheran.

Bad break? Mac Williamson got hit by a pitch in his second at-bat but stayed in the game and drew a walk. He was replaced by Gorkys Hernandez a couple of innings later. Any injury would be a brutal break for Williamson, who is hoping to play winter ball.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Canha, A's Walk Off on Mariners in Final Home Game of 2017]]>Wed, 27 Sep 2017 23:14:52 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/as-recap-ap.jpg


OAKLAND -- Mark Canha hit a game-ending home run in the ninth inning to lead the Oakland Athletics past the Seattle Mariners 6-5 on Wednesday.

Canha's fifth homer this season came on a 1-0 pitch from Shae Simmons (0-1).

Oakland avoided a three-game sweep and snapped an eight-game losing streak against Seattle.

The A's improved to 15-10 in September, clinching their first winning month since April of 2016. They won 15 games in a month for the first time since June 2015.

Matt Joyce tied an A's record with three doubles.

Blake Treinen (3-4) pitched a scoreless ninth, working around a one-out double by rookie Mike Marjama.

The A's led 5-3 going into the top of the eighth, when Robinson Cano hit a two-run homer off Chris Hatcher.

Cano's 23rd homer was Seattle's second game-tying home run on the day. The Mariners trailed 2-0 when Nelson Cruz hit his team-leading 38th homer, a two-run shot off Kendall Graveman in the top of the fourth.

Graveman left the game with a 5-3 lead and was in line to win his fourth straight decision. Oakland's ace struck out four and gave up three runs on seven hits and one walk in six innings.


Asked whether he has concerns about catcher Bruce Maxwell taking a knee during the national anthem to protest racial injustice in this weekend's road series against the Rangers, A's manager Bob Melvin said he'll have a better sense of the atmosphere once his team gets to Texas.

"I don't think it'll bother him, put it that way," Melvin said. "He's pretty committed to what he's doing and continues to do so and he'll do it in Texas."


Marjama made his first career start. The 28-year-old was 2 for 4, collecting his first major league hits.


Mariners: OF Guillermo Heredia left the team and is expected to have surgery to repair a right shoulder injury he's been playing with all year. Heredia, who bats and throws left-handed, will get a second opinion before having the procedure performed by a specialist in Miami, manager Scott Servais said.


Mariners: LHP Marco Gonzales (1-1, 5.51 ERA) will pitch Friday's series opener against the Angels in Los Angeles. The 24-year-old rookie is 1-0 with a 2.25 ERA in his last four starts.

Athletics: LHP Sean Manaea (11-10, 4.56) will pitch Thursday's series opener in Texas. Manaea missed his last start with upper back tightness. The 25-year-old is 1-1 with a 6.10 ERA in six career starts against the Rangers.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Oakland A's Plan to Move Headquarters to Jack London Square]]>Wed, 27 Sep 2017 15:04:12 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/OaklandColiseumAs.png

Oakland Athletics executives have announced that they are moving the baseball team's headquarters to Jack London Square, effective in January.

The A's said they've signed a lease with the real estate firm CIM Group for about 40,000 square feet of office space at Jack London Square, the waterfront office and retail destination near downtown Oakland.

A's officials said the new front office headquarters will allow them to consolidate their operations by relocating from the current offices at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum and Oracle Arena about 6 miles away.

The A's have played at the Coliseum for 50 years.

The A's said the Jack London Square site offers them proximity to both the Coliseum and to the potential new ballpark that they hope to build near Laney College.

Jack London Square also provides the amenities of a mixed-use environment on San Francisco Bay, with dining, shopping, and entertainment options, similar to the A's vision for their new ballpark as a gathering place for bringing the community together.

"We are excited to put roots down in Jack London Square," Oakland A's president Dave Kaval said in a statement. "We continue to say we are 'Rooted in Oakland' and this move helps further strengthen our commitment to this community."

Shaul Kuba, the co-founder and principal of the CIM Group, said, "The Athletics add to the growing lineup of prominent tenants including eclectic dining options and destination activities that employees, residents, and visitors from the greater Bay Area can enjoy."

Chris Giles, the A's chief operating officer, said, "Our new offices will allow us to have our entire staff together in one location to create a dynamic and collaborative work environment."

Giles said, "Our staff will now have the opportunity to easily gather for formal meetings or informal exchanges as it takes advantage of the beautiful outdoor waterfront areas. We will also still keep our office space at the Coliseum for day-of-game responsibilities."

CIM's 2016 acquisition of Jack London Square included 234,000 square feet of office space across three buildings.

Port of Oakland officials said today that they applaud the A's decision to move their headquarters to Jack London Square.

"We're delighted that two symbols of Oakland are coming together," Port of Oakland commercial real estate director Pamela Kershaw said.

"The city takes great pride in its team and its port and we're proud that Jack London Square will be the A's new headquarters," Kershaw said.

Port officials said the A's will relocate to space in a six-story office building at the foot of Harrison Street that is also occupied by the administrative offices of Sunset Magazine.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Moore Rocked by Diamondbacks, Giants Lose Big]]>Tue, 26 Sep 2017 22:45:00 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/moore-bochy-ap.jpg

PHOENIX — The Giants brought all their scouts and front office officials to Scottsdale this week to begin the process of mapping out coverage for next June’s draft. They still don’t know which pick they’ll have, but Tuesday night’s game certainly helped the cause of any team officials quietly hoping to pick first overall.

Matt Moore got hammered at Chase Field and the Giants lost 11-4 to the Diamondbacks. The loss was No. 96 on the season, and it pushed the Giants back into the worst record in baseball. The Phillies, who had been tied, beat the Nationals earlier in the night. The Tigers and White Sox also lost, so they’re still in the race.

The loss made this the fourth team in franchise history to lose 96 games. Here are some more fun facts …

Franchise-worst season: J.D. Martinez’s grand slam made it 8-0 and came on what likely will be Moore’s final pitch of the season. He walked off the mound after 1 1/3 innings, having allowed eight runs — only seven of them were earned. Moore has a 5.52 ERA, which is the highest by any Giants starter who has made at least 30 starts. The previous record was 5.41, by Kirk Rueter in 1999.

Eyes on the prize? Basically the entire Giants front office is in the general manager’s suite this series, so they had a good view when Martinez — a free agent in five weeks — hit his 28th homer in 58 games for the Diamondbacks. He has 44 overall this season. Again, he will be a free agent.

Fallback option? Bochy pulled both his catchers — Buster Posey and Nick Hundley — in the fourth inning. His third catcher, Tim Federowicz, promptly hit a two-run bomb in the top of the fifth. If Hundley doesn’t return, you can bet the Giants will try to bring Fed-X back. They don’t have a lot of catching depth in their system.

Losses piling up: The other Giants seasons with at least 96 losses: 1943, 1984, 1985. If the 2017 Giants lose two more, they’ll tie the 1943 team for second-most losses in franchise history.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[A's Burned by Former Teammates, Lose to Mariners]]>Tue, 26 Sep 2017 22:46:59 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/as-mariners-0926.jpg

OAKLAND — The A’s played to the theme of their season Tuesday, using the Coliseum as a home run launching pad.

Instead of paving the way to another home victory, however, the A’s had the rug yanked out from under them courtesy of a couple former teammates.

Yonder Alonso hit a two-run homer off Daniel Mengden, then Danny Valencia hit a go-ahead three-run blast off Ryan Dull in the seventh as the Mariners reeled off a 6-3 victory, their second win in as many nights at the Coliseum.

Marcus Semien led off the bottom of the first with a home run. They trailed 2-1 in the sixth when Khris Davis put them ahead with a two-run shot to right-center. Those accounted for the A’s 127th and 128th homers at the Coliseum, breaking the Oakland record of 126 held by the 2000 club.

TYING HIS MARK: Davis’ two-run shot was his 42nd homer, tying his career-high total from last season. He tagged a 1-0 fastball from lefty James Paxton and sent a laser into the seats in right-center. It was Davis’ 20th go-ahead homer of the season, the most by an Athletic since Jose Canseco had 20 in 1991.

NOT QUITE ENOUGH: Daniel Mengden went six-plus innings for the A’s but wound up taking the loss and owning a line that didn’t reflect how well he pitched. He wound up charged four runs, two of those coming on the homer Dull allowed in the seventh. Mengden (2-2) gave up five hits and walked three, but he was helped by two ground-ball double plays and a couple of excellent outfield catches from Mark Canha and Jake Smolinski.

SEASON CUT SHORT: Manager Bob Melvin said first baseman Matt Olson (strained hamstring) and center fielder Boog Powell (bruised left knee) will miss the final five games. For Olson, it’s the end of a torrid run that began in early August. The rookie crammed 24 home runs into just 59 games this season. That included a well-publicized stretch starting Aug. 27 in which he went deep 16 times in a 24-game span. Olson spent six separate stints with the big club this season, hitting Olson .259 overall with a .352 on-base percentage and an outstanding 1.003 OPS over his 59 games. Not surprisingly, Melvin said Olson is very deserving of starting next season as the A’s everyday first baseman.

COTTON SHUT DOWN: Despite an MRI on his elbow that came back clean, Jharel Cotton won’t make his final scheduled start Friday. The A’s are taking caution with their rookie starter, who burst on the scene with an excellent September last year but finishes this season 9-10 with a 5.58 ERA.

“There are times he looks like one of the better pitchers in the league, and other times when he struggles some,” Melvin said. “It’s gonna be all about consistency with him, consistent maintenance and ritual going into each and every start. Playing the mental game a little bit more, the expectations for himself.”

Raul Alcantara will start in Cotton’s spot Friday at Texas.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sharks' Ward Wouldn't Be Opposed to Kneeling During Anthem]]>Wed, 27 Sep 2017 16:37:53 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/joel-ward-sharks.jpg

SAN JOSE -- Sharks forward Joel Ward said he might take a knee during the national anthem at an upcoming game, becoming one of the first NHL players to join the protests that started in the NFL and drew criticism from President Donald Trump.

The 36-year-old Ward, one of about 30 black players in the league, is from Canada. Asked if he would consider kneeling during the anthem, Ward said it's something he wouldn't rule out.

"I've experienced a lot of racism myself in hockey and on a day-to-day occurrence," he said. "I haven't really sat down to think about it too much yet, but I definitely wouldn't say no to it."

Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began kneeling during the anthem in the preseason a year ago to make a statement about social inequality and police treatment of blacks in the United States. More than 200 players knelt or took other action during Sunday's anthems in the wake of Trump's suggestion that NFL owners fire players who protest during "The Star-Spangled Banner."

Ward proudly wears No. 42 as a tribute to baseball Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson, who endured countless threats and abuse while paving the way for black athletes in Major League Baseball.

Ward said he once received a death threat after scoring a series-clinching goal.

"When somebody takes the initiative to put you down because of the color of your skin, it's definitely tough," he said.

Oakland Athletics catcher Bruce Maxwell became the first major league baseball player to take a knee during the national anthem Saturday.

The Sharks voiced their support for Ward, issuing a statement this week:

"The San Jose Sharks deeply respect each individual's constitutional right to freedom of speech and personal expression."

Another NHL player, the Philadelphia Flyers Wayne Simmonds, also is considering kneeling during the anthem when the Flyers play the Sharks next Wednesday in the regular-season opener in San Jose.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Bay Area

Photo Credit: Kevin Kurz]]>
<![CDATA[Hundley, Pence Power Giants Past Diamondbacks]]>Mon, 25 Sep 2017 21:48:56 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/166*120/giants-0925.jpg

PHOENIX — Having clinched a postseason spot four times since 2010, the Giants know a thing or two about Hangover Lineups. They won’t have any this season, but they’re certainly doing a good job of taking advantage of them.

For the second time on this trip, the Giants faced a team that had celebrated a clinch the night before. The Diamondbacks basically played their September call-ups, and Johnny Cueto carved them up. His lineup jumped all over Zack Godley, who will be in the playoff rotation if the Diamondbacks get past the Wild Card Game, winning 9-2 at Chase Field.

The Giants moved back into a tie with the Phillies for the worst record in the majors. Here are some more fun facts...

Cueto dominates D'backs: Cueto will likely start Sunday at AT&T Park. His final road appearance: 6 innings, 5 hits, 2 earned runs, 2 walks, 8 strikeouts. Over his last four starts, Cueto has 29 strikeouts in 21 1/3 innings.

Hundley reaches new heights: Nick Hundley gave the Giants the lead with a three-run shot in the fourth, his ninth of the season. The towering homer had an apex of 142 feet and was easily the highest-hit homer of the season. Denard Span had the previous high at 131 feet.

Giants explode in fifth: The five-run fourth was the lineup’s first five-run inning since August 19, when the Giants scored five in the ninth against the Phillies. In addition to Hundley’s homer, Hunter Pence had a solo shot off the right field pole.

Chance at milestone gone? Joe Panik .300 Update: This will probably be the final edition of the popular Joe Panik .300 Update. Panik was 0 for 4, dropping his average to .287 with five games to go.

#OldFriendAlert: Old friend Gregor Blanco led off for the Diamondbacks and proved to be a pest. He walked in each of his first two plate appearances, stole a base, and scored two runs.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Mariners Club Four Home Runs, End A's 7-game Win Streak]]>Mon, 25 Sep 2017 21:50:40 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/gossett-homer-mariners-ap.jpg


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.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[For Warriors' Draymond Green, Protests Can't Be Short-Lived]]>Mon, 25 Sep 2017 16:53:16 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/draymond-teamusa-anthem-2016-usatsi.jpg

OAKLAND -- Easing into a seat for an interview a half hour after the Warriors finished practice Monday, Draymond Green responded to the first six questions at decibels barely above a whisper.

There was candor on basketball matters, because there always is with Green, but the power forward's tone was relatively relaxed.

Not until the next several questions, all related to America's polarizing sociopolitical climate, did Green's heart and mind lock into rhythm. Asked if he believes the current wave of protests against inequality will go away soon, his voice picked up volume and conviction.

"I hope not," Green said. "If it goes away, then we still have a problem. So I hope it's not going away in a few weeks. Then we've missed the message again.

"So, no, I don't think it'll be gone away in a few weeks. And I pray that it's not, because it's not a problem that can be fixed in a few weeks. So, no, it shouldn't be gone in a few weeks."

Green acknowledged that he did not see the demonstrations that were spread across the NFL landscape on Sunday. He was, he said, out shopping and enjoying the day with his children.

He was aware that some teams stayed in the locker room during the anthem, that others knelt on the sidelines and that some linked arms. Being aware was not enough for Green to feel comfortable addressing that aspect.

But he's very familiar with the subject matter.

"You just have to stand for what you believe in," Green said during an answer than lasted more than two full minutes. "What everyone else may believe in, you may not believe in."

Articulating the difference between the life of the athlete and that of a soldier, Green explaining that he has the "utmost respect" for those in the military.

"I just hope that there can be an understanding that this isn't against the military," he said. "It's not to disrespect anything they do. Because I think everyone respects what they do . . . I appreciate everything they do."

It was evident, however, that Green is on the same page as those pushing for the progress that would make America great, allowing the country to live up to its pledges stated in the constitution and elsewhere.

That's why he hopes this activism is not a trend but a movement.

"I'm not saying kneeling shouldn't be gone," Green said. "But this conversation, trying to make these changes, absolutely not. If it's gone in a few weeks, we're screwed."

Photo Credit: Monte Poole]]>
<![CDATA[Majority of Raiders Sit, Link Arms During Anthem]]>Sun, 24 Sep 2017 23:10:59 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/raiders-protest-ap.jpg

LANDOVER, Md. – Most Raiders took a seat during the national anthem, locked arm in arm across the bench. Others stood and linked arms, without a smile among them.

The Silver and Black sat in protest of comments made by president Donald Trump on Friday night in Huntsville, Ala., when he denounced the anthem movement popularized by former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

Quarterback Derek Carr was among the few Raiders not protesting the anthem. Owner Mark Davis stood for the anthem in a luxury box, with his hand over his heart.

Davis prefers his players stand for the national anthem, but told ESPN on Sunday that his stance has changed.

"I can no longer ask our team to not say something while they are in a Raider uniform," Davis said. The only thing I can ask them to do is do it with class. Do it with pride. Not only do we have to tell people there is something wrong, we have to come up with answers. That's the challenge in front of us as Americans and human beings."

Running back Marshawn Lynch has sat during the national anthem all season, though he hasn't addressed his decision publicly.

Kaepernick's movement started early last season, when he was vocal about inequality for minorities in this country, especially in regard to police brutality.

The Raiders have generally avoided anthem protests outside of Lynch, though Derek Carr put an arm on Khalil Mack's shoulder showed signs of unity during the preseason, but Trump's comments changed the team's attitude. He said anthem protesters should be fired, and also took some shots at NBA players, including Steph Curry.

The Raiders weren't the only team protesting Trump's comments on Sunday. Several teams didn't come out for the national anthem, including both sides of the Tennessee-Seattle contest.

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Fall Flat in Washington]]>Sun, 24 Sep 2017 19:49:19 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/Raidlozetowashh.jpg

This past week, Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio said he knew his team faced a tough task to travel across country to win its third straight game.

“We have to do it the right way, manage it,” he said. “Take care of business. It’s a business trip. Be excited to show up Sunday night full of energy.”

Unfortunately for the Raiders, that didn’t happen. After starting 2017 with two victories, Oakland fell at Washington 27-10. They didn’t take care of business.

Then again, it was a strange day for the Raiders and every other team across the NFL, as football seemed to take a backseat to politics. There was as much focus on what teams and players would do for the national anthem as what they would do on the field.

After President Trump on Friday said players who kneel for the national anthem should be fired, players across the NFL showed solidarity during the anthem, and the Raiders perhaps had more players kneeling or sitting during the anthem than any other team. And, owner Mark Davis – who stood with his team on the sideline with his hand over his heart – released a statement in support of Raiders’ players right to protest.

So, perhaps it was the distraction. Or, maybe it was that 3,000-mile trip. Whatever it was, the Raiders came out flat. By halftime, they trailed 14-0, on two Kirk Cousins touchdown passes. By the time the Raiders finally scored – on a 21-yard pass from Derek Carr to Jared Cook in the third quarter – they were down 21-0.

Carr – who hadn’t thrown an interception over the first two games – was picked off on Oakland’s first possession, setting up Washington’s first TD. Carr was picked off again, just before halftime, to set up Washington’s second score.

Carr, who came in with a passer rating of 126.5 – the third best in the NFL – had an abysmal game, completing 19-of-31 passes for just 118 yards. The running game, too, which had been dominant, disappeared. Marshawn Lynch carried six times for a team-leading 18 yards.

The Raiders, now 2-1, will try to get back on the winning track next Sunday in Denver vs. the Broncos.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Suffer First Loss of Season as Redskins Dominate]]>Sun, 24 Sep 2017 23:09:15 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/roberts-0924.jpg

LANDOVER, Md. – The first two Raiders games went according to plan. They established an early lead, played solid defense and cruised to victory. The offense proved a dynamic and defenders exceeded expectation.

That streak snapped on Sunday night, when nothing went right.

The Raiders fell off the rails early and never recovered, losing a 27-10 decision to Washington at FedEx Field.

They made an average Washington squad look like a juggernaut. A prolific Raiders offense wilted under Washington pressure. Their mighty offensive line had its worst day in a while and typically reliable quarterback Derek Carr was off target.

The Silver and Black had just xxx yards of total offense, and gave up explosive plays on defense. They were beat soundly on both lines, and were never able to dig out of a early rut.

The Raiders were uninspired in most instances, but Marquette King gave his team some life. He forced a muffed punt late in the third quarter that James Cower recovered. Carr found Jared Cook on a 21-yard touchdown that ended the shutout.

The defense didn’t allow a comeback to take shape, giving up a 74-yard reception to running back Chris Thompson – he had 188 yards of total offense – that set up a field goal that put the Raiders down three scores.

Cory James forced a fumble deep in Washington territory, but the Raiders only mustered a field goal

The Raiders laid an egg in the first half. They got manhandled on both sides of the ball, committed silly turnovers and gave Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins far too much time to work.

He picked the Raiders secondary apart on two touchdown drives that established a two-score halftime lead. Former 49ers tight end Vernon Davis, seeing more time with Jordan Reed hurt, had five catches for 58 yards and a touchdown.

The Raiders have long struggled covering tight ends, and made the veteran look like his old self, when he was dominant as a 49er.

The whole team seemed flat early in this game. Marshawn Lynch struggled to get the ground game going, Carr threw too many to the other team and the Raiders fell in an early hole.

Players from both teams protested during the national anthem before the game, with several Raiders players sitting on the bench interlocking arms while Redskins players also interlocked arms, with most standing and some kneeling on the sideline.

Carr’s rough start: Derek Carr’s first pass was an interception. It wasn’t the only one. The typically reliable Raiders quarterback was out of sync to start this nationally televised contest, and the offense sputtered as a result. He was sacked on consecutive plays, as the offensive line struggled to maintain a pocket.

Washington scored after both Carr interceptions, and he finished the first half with just 32 passing yards.

Marquette strikes again: Raiders punter Marquette King puts some English on his punts. They’re tough to catch when he does that.

He forced a muffed punt for the second time in as many games, Sunday night, which helped the Raiders get on the scoreboard. James Cower recovered the muffed punt, and Carr found Jared Cook a few plays later to score the team’s first touchdown.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Giants Shut Down By Kershaw, Drop Finale to Dodgers]]>Sun, 24 Sep 2017 23:10:45 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/160*120/giants-0924.jpg

LOS ANGELES — With two outs in the eighth inning on Sunday afternoon, Gorkys Hernandez took a swing and accidentally flung his bat right back to the mound. The fans booed as Clayton Kershaw, who had jumped out of the way, retrieved it.

Look, nothing else has worked against this guy.

This method didn’t, either. Hernandez struck out, giving Kershaw 200 on the year. He was his usual self, scattering eight Giants hits in eight innings and allowing just one run on a Mac Williamson dinger. The Giants lost 3-1, dropping the final series against the Dodgers.

Kershaw is Kershaw. What are you going to do? For now, you can read more about this game!

Double trouble for Giants catchers: The Giants are carrying three catchers right now, and all three hit into a double play. Tim Federowicz pinch-hit for Chris Stratton in the fifth and bounced the first pitch over to short. Buster Posey hit a similar ball an inning later. Nick Hundley wiped out a leadoff single an inning after that. That’s hard to do, man.

A preview of things to come? In relief of Stratton, Ty Blach might have given a preview of what’s to come next season. Blach pitched three scoreless innings, turning the tables on a lineup that was set to face a right-hander. That very much looks like it will be Blach’s role to begin next season, although the Giants will always have the flexibility to move him back into the rotation.

Williamson does it all: Williamson had two singles before his long homer to center in the eighth. He did it in the field, too, cutting Joc Pederson down at third as he tried to go first-to-third on a single to left. That throw ended an inning and got Blach out of a jam.

Career year vs. Kershaw: Hunter Pence had three singles, and he finished 7-for-13 against Kershaw this season. Pence entered the year with just six hits in 66 at-bats against Kershaw.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[49ers Fall Short Against Rams on 'Thursday Night Football']]>Thu, 21 Sep 2017 21:06:36 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/49ers+-0921.jpg

SANTA CLARA – After feasting on the Los Angeles Rams twice last year, the 49ers found out Thursday night that these Sean McVay Rams are not the same ol’ Rams.

McVay, the 31-year-old head coach who served under Kyle Shanahan for several seasons with Washington, got the better of the first head-to-head matchups against his former mentor. It could be their first of many meetings as NFC West rivals.

Rams quarterback Jared Goff looked like the No. 1 overall draft pick of 2016 -- which he was -- and the 49ers made enough critical errors to prevent Shanahan from any chance of his first victory as an NFL head coach.

The Rams took advantage of an early Brian Hoyer mistake and held on for dear life to a 41-39 victory over the 49ers in front of a sparse gathering at Levi’s Stadium.

In the past 22 games entering Thursday’s game, the 49ers were 3-0 against the Rams and 0-19 against all other opponents.

The 49ers made it interesting late. After Hoyer threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to rookie slot receiver Trent Taylor to cut the Rams lead to eight points, 41-33, with 5:12 remaining in the fourth quarter, the 49ers got a quick takeaway on the ensuring kickoff.

Victor Bolden forced a fumble on Rams return man Pharoh Cooper, and Aldrick Robinson made the recovery. Carlos Hyde scored with 2:17 remaining, but Hoyer’s two-point conversion pass intended for Trent Taylor for the tie was intercepted.

Trailing 41-39, Robbie Gould’s onside kick was recovered by Raheem Mostert. But the 49ers could get no closer.

Coming off a poor performance on Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks, the night could not have started any worse for Hoyer, the 49ers’ starting quarterback.

Hoyer’s first attempt, intended for Marquise Goodwin was off the mark, provided Rams defensive back Nickell Robey-Coleman with an easy interception. Robey-Coleman’s 25-yard return set up Todd Gurley’s 3-yard touchdown run.

And just like that, the 49ers trailed 7-0 just 12 seconds into the game.

Hoyer and the 49ers’ offense managed to string together enough plays on the next drive and were aided by a Rams offside penalty on a punt to form a 14-play, 81-yard drive.

Hoyer accounted for the first touchdown in 126 minutes, 47 seconds for the 49ers this season with a 9-yard touchdown run. It was the second running touchdown of Hoyer’s career, and the first since his rookie season of 2009 with the New England Patriots.

Gurley scored three touchdowns in the first half as the Rams built a 24-13 lead. Robbie Gould kicked field goals of 36 and 48 yards for the 49ers. But he also missed an extra point at the beginning of the fourth quarter.

Gurley finished with 113 yards and two touchdowns on 28 rushing attempts. He added a 7-yard touchdown reception.

Goff had a strong showing, completing 22 of 28 passes for 292 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. His passer rating was 145.8.

The 49ers got back into the game in the middle of the third quarter with a 10-play, 75-yard scoring drive. Shanahan rolled the dice on fourth down from the L.A. 1-yard line. Hyde scored to make the score 27-20 with 20 minutes to play.

But the 49ers’ defense was not up to the task, allowing the Rams to convert 7 of 11 on third downs.

Hoyer ended up piecing together a decent game, completing 23 of 37 passes for 332 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Pierre Garçon caught seven passes for 142 yards.

INJURY REPORT: Fullback Kyle Juszczyk was ruled out of action for the remainder of the game late in the third quarter due to a neck injury. Juszczyk appeared to be injured during a short-yardage situation that ended up with Hyde scoring on a 1-yard run.

The 49ers also lost two players due to concussions. Safety Jaquiski Tartt and linebacker Brock Coyle both sustained head injuries in the third quarter and were ultimately diagnosed with concussions, the 49ers announced.

Defensive lineman Tank Carradine went down early in the fourth quarter with an ankle injury and did not return.

The 49ers will return to action on Oct. 1 against the Arizona Cardinals.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders QB Carr Channels Inner Pop Star in Mock Music Ad]]>Wed, 20 Sep 2017 20:14:35 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/derekcarr-musicvideo.jpg

ALAMEDA – Derek Carr is trying to moonlight as a pop star. That's what a guerilla marketing campaign by a San Joaquin Valley credit union would have you believe.

They released billboards and short video teasers of the Raiders quarterback prepping to shoot a music video this summer, and the full video/commercial spot was released on Monday.

It's well, something else. Clearly meant to be self deprecating, Carr is pumping up Educational Employees Credit Union and their great rates in the mock music video, where Carr is given a certain boy-band vibe. Take a look: 

Derek's brother David shows up later in the ad, clearly upset at being outshined by little bro.

It's the latest in an annual series of ads with the Carr brothers.

"It literally took us a couple of hours. That's it," Derek Carr said. "All of the takes were because I kept laughing. I couldn't even take myself serious because they had the TV prompter so I could see it, and I couldn't even take myself serious. But it was good. It was fun because every commercial we do with them, all we want to do is, the end goal is we want people to laugh. And if they laugh at me for it, that's good, that's what we want. I laughed at myself, so it's all good with me."

That begged a hard-hitting, journalist follow-up question. So, Derek, did you keep the jacket?

"I didn't keep it, no. Gosh, no," Carr said. "As soon as I walked in and we had our little dressing rooms, me and my brother looked at that jacket and I was like, ‘I really hope that's not the one.' And sure enough it was. But that's alright. We have a good relationship with them and it was a lot of fun."

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Moore Marvels as Giants Shut Out Rockies, Complete Sweep]]>Wed, 20 Sep 2017 18:20:56 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/giants-0920.jpg

SAN FRANCISCO — On a day when much of the baseball world was talking about this being the most homer-happy season in MLB history, the Giants went back to their roots.

The first two runs came on sacrifice flies and a fourth run was scored on a walk, wild pitch, and two-out single. Throw in a solo homer and a sharp performance from Matt Moore, and the Giants got a 4-0 win over the Rockies. They swept this brief two-game series and clinched their first three-game winning streak since a sweep of the Pirates June 30-July 2.

Here’s what else you need to know from the final weekday day game at AT&T Park …

Masterful Matt Moore: Moore was at his best, allowing six hits and striking out six in six shutout innings. He carried the lead into the seventh before running into some brief trouble. The scoreless outing was Moore’s first this season as a starter.

Sac flies lead San Francisco: The Giants jumped ahead on sac flies by Denard Span and Buster Posey, both of which scored Joe Panik. They lead the National League with 50 sacrifice flies, so at least there’s some aspect of situational hitting where they’re excelling.

Crawford goes deep: Brandon Crawford hit a solo blast that was about three feet away from his homer that was taken off the board a few weeks ago. The homer was Crawford’s 14th. There’s a very good chance that the Brandons finish 1-2 on the team in homers.

LeMahieu joins Gwynn: With a first-inning single, DJ LeMahieu picked up his 30th hit of the season against the Giants. So ... it’s not just Nolan Arenado doing the destruction. LeMahieu became the first player to get 30 hits in a season series against the Giants since Tony Gwynn in 1989. The record is held by Pete Rose; he had 32 hits in 18 games against the Giants in 1976.

Big outing for Okert: Bruce Bochy turned to Steven Okert against pinch-hitter Pat Valaika. With two on, Okert struck Valaika out on a good fastball down and away. Right-handed hitters have just two hits in their last 20 at-bats against Okert. He then got Charlie Blackmon to ground out. Okert is making some strides late in the year.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Cueto, Pence Power Giants to Walk-off Win Over Rockies]]>Tue, 19 Sep 2017 22:50:58 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/giants-0919.jpg

SAN FRANCISCO — Johnny Cueto brought the fun. Hunter Pence brought the thunder, and the game-winner.

Four innings after a go-ahead homer, Pence’s sacrifice fly to right-center clinched a 4-3 win over the Rockies. The win was No. 59 on the season, and gave the Giants a little breathing room as the 100-loss mark approaches.

Pablo Sandoval led off the bottom of the ninth with a roller that went for an infield single. He was replaced by pinch-runner Orlando Calixte, and Calixte went to second when Ryder Jones pushed a bunt for a hit. Kelby Tomlinson followed with a pinch-hit single to right and Pence ended it.

Here are some more things to know from a fun game …

—- Cueto might have provided the funniest moment of the season. He was on first when Pence homered, and as Pence came roaring around second, Cueto — in a black jacket — looked back and told him to slow down. The two then went the final 90 feet of the go-ahead shot in a fast-walk. It must have been an odd moment for Full Throttle.

—- Cueto’s pitch count got up early, but he used double plays to get kind of deep. In 6 2/3 innings, he allowed two earned on seven hits and four walks. He also struck out six. The outing was Cueto’s longest since June 24.

—- Pence’s homer was his 12th, and went 444 feet to dead center. That’s Pence’s longest homer of the season. He’s now tied with Buster Posey for the team lead among right-handers, and he’s one homer behind Brandon Crawford for the lead among active Giants.

—- Sandoval is coming out of one of the worst slumps in franchise history. He had three hits, including an RBI single. On Sunday, Sandoval had two hits.

—- Hunter Strickland blew the lead in the eighth. With a running on second, he got away with a hanging breaking ball that Nolan Arenado hit to the track. The next guy, Gerardo Parra, fouled off six pitches before roping a tying double into the right field corner.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Lowrie's Grand Slam Powers A's Past Tigers]]>Tue, 19 Sep 2017 22:52:21 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/172*120/as-tigers-0919.jpg

Matt Olson continued his historic home run barrage Tuesday, and that only turned out to be part of the story on a wild night for the A’s.

They gave up a three-run lead, then trailed by four before Jed Lowrie hit an eighth-inning grand slam that lifted them to a 9-8 victory over the Detroit Tigers.

Olson crushed a curve from Chad Bell deep into the seats in right in the second, the fifth game in a row that he’s homered. That set an Oakland rookie record for most consecutive games going deep. Olson’s 23 homers are a franchise record for a player’s first 66 career games. He’s the first rookie in major league history to hit 15 homers over a 21-game span, and the first player in Oakland history ever to do so, regardless of experience.

Since he was recalled from the minors Aug. 11, Olson leads the majors with 19 homers. He remains the A’s headline story, but his team continued an impressive late-season roll. The A’s have won 10 of their past 13, and they’ve won back-to-back road series for the first time all season.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Rookie Olson Homers in 4th Straight Game as A's Beat Tigers]]>Mon, 18 Sep 2017 22:59:24 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/olson-ap.jpg

The A’s continued a nice late-season roll Monday night, and in doing so they overcame some adversity before the game even began.

Scheduled starter Jharel Cotton was scratched roughly 10 minutes before first pitch against the Detroit Tigers with a strained right groin, apparently suffered while going through his pregame preparations. Long reliever Raul Alcantara started on short notice and performed admirably, and rookie first baseman Matt Olson homered for the fourth consecutive game as the A’s rolled 8-3 in the opener of a three-game series at Comerica Park.

Oakland has won nine of its past 12 and is 4-3 on this nine-game road trip. If you’re keeping track, the A’s are also 9-8 in September. That’s noteworthy as they’re looking to break an Oakland-record string of 10 consecutive months with a losing record.

ROOKIE ROLLING: Olson’s ridiculous stretch of power hitting continues. He’s tied an Oakland rookie record by homering in four consecutive games. He’s now got 22 homers on the season, which ties Mark McGwire for the franchise record for most homers in the first 65 games of a career. To break it down further, Olson has gone deep 11 times in his past 15 games, and 14 times over his past 20. His 18 homers since the All-Star break are tied with Philadelphia’s Rhys Hoskins for the most among major league rookies.

DELIVERING ON SHORT NOTICE: With Cotton unavailable and possibly out for the rest of the season, Alcantara was called upon on short notice and gave the A’s everything they could have realistically hoped for — 3 2/3 scoreless innings. That should serve as a confidence boost for a pitcher who won a spot in the season-opening rotation but was quickly demoted to the bullpen and sent to the minors shortly after.

RELIEVERS RESPOND: Manager Bob Melvin had to know going in that he’d rely on his bullpen heavily in this one. The ‘pen responded, as Simon Castro, Liam Hendriks, Santiago Casilla, Chris Hatcher and Blake Treinen combined for 5 1/3 innings of three-run ball. Detroit scored twice off Castro in the fifth, when the A’s were up already 7-0. Casilla gave up Ian Kinsler’s homer in the seventh. But the relief corps delivered on a night they shouldered big load.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Alaska Airlines Teams Up With Warriors' Durant, SF Giants]]>Mon, 18 Sep 2017 22:59:52 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/durant-alaska-0918.jpg

Alaska Airlines is spreading its wings in the Bay Area, recently inking two significant partnerships in the local professional sports community.

On Monday, the airline announced it is teaming up with Golden State Warriors superstar Kevin Durant to support Bay Area youth and education programs. Just last week, Alaska Air announced a seven-year deal to become the official airline of the San Francisco Giants, extending an established partnership the team had with Virgin America, which Alaska Air now owns.

Durant will assume the official title of adviser to the CEO, the airline said.

Alaska Airlines said it is making a donation to further the work of the Kevin Durant Charity Foundation, including his Build It and They Will Ball project to build and renovate youth basketball courts in underserved neighborhoods. To date, the foundation has unveiled 14 courts in four different countries, including two in Oakland and one in nearby Redwood City, the airline said.

"With their expansion into the Bay and their commitment to my foundation, my partnership with Alaska couldn't be a better fit," Durant said.

Meanwhile, the deal with the Giants will include an Airbus 321, operated by Virgin America, donning the team's colors and logo. The plane will begin flying early in 2018, the airline said.

The Giants deal also includes fan-friendly components such as in-flight offers, special vacation packages, two-for-one voucher events and added flights during spring training 2018.

Photo Credit: Getty Images/Alaska Airlines]]>
<![CDATA[A's to Dedicate Statue of Henderson at Coliseum Next Year]]>Sat, 16 Sep 2017 16:41:10 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/rickey-henderson-stolenbaserecord-ap.jpg

The A's will dedicate a statue of Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson at the Coliseum for next season, a team spokesperson confirmed to NBC Sports California.

The exact date of the unveiling will be announced as the 2018 season gets closer, but the statue is another tribute to the major leagues' all-time stolen base and runs leader. The playing surface at the Coliseum was named Rickey Henderson Field before this season, and that honor will carry over into the A's planned new ballpark near downtown Oakland, scheduled for opening in 2023.

The A's have made increased efforts this season to spotlight some of the greats throughout their history. They've renamed two of the entrance gates to the Coliseum after Hall of Fame pitchers Catfish Hunter and Dennis Eckersley.

Earlier this year, Henderson and Eckersley both were named special assistants to A's president Dave Kaval. Henderson has been visible around the Coliseum often this season; Eckersley's time is more limited due to his broadcasting duties with the Boston Red Sox.

The Coliseum's Joint Powers Authority needed to grant final approval for the Henderson statue, and that came during Friday's board meeting.

The East Bay Citizen was first to report news of the Henderson statue.

Photo Credit: Joe Stiglich]]>
<![CDATA[Marshawn's Homecoming Focal Point of Raiders Home Opener]]>Sat, 16 Sep 2017 14:35:18 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/lynch-titans.jpg

OAKLAND – Leaving Tennessee Titans defensive tackle Jurrell Casey unblocked normally spells trouble. The two-time Pro Bowler, after all is 6-foot-1, 305 pounds backfield wrecking ball. A lack of communication up front left Casey free and Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch exposed approaching the line of scrimmage.

Lynch didn't dodge. He went full battering ram in that instant, slamming into someone 90 pounds heavier. Size didn't matter here. Lynch trucked Casey on that play and stay upright for a 6-yard gain.

The Raiders sideline went crazy.

Just imagine if that play happened at Oakland Coliseum. Roar might've registered on the Richter scale.

That could happen Sunday against the New York Jets. That's Marshawn's homecoming game.

Beast Mode is a national brand, but Oakland is its capital. Lynch is The Town's most popular resident, a proud native who has given so much to his community. Tales of his generosity are legend in these parts, though never, ever told by him.

They get out nonetheless, drawing a complete picture of someone who cares about far more about community than football.

Lynch came out of retirement for Oakland. He made that clear in one of two meeting with the media since returning to football. He did so after the Raiders were approved to bolt for Las Vegas and leave Lynch's hometown for a second time.

"A lot of the kids probably won't have an opportunity to see most of their idols growing up and being in their hometown (after the Raiders leave)," Lynch said on June 6 "With me being from here and continuing to be here, it gives them an opportunity to see somebody who actually did it from where they're from and for the team they probably idolize."

It will be a big moment for many, one that has captured local attention to a point that you haven't seen headlines about leaving for Las Vegas. This could mark the beginning of the end for Oakland football. It won't. Not on Marshawn's day. Maybe not while Marshawn's in silver and black. 

That especially true after last week's performance, which was vintage Beast Mode. This is Marshawn's game, in his house.

"Super excited to be at home and knowing that Marshawn is a home boy," said head coach and Hayward native Jack Del Rio. "This is his home, like me, grew up here in the East Bay. I know he's going to have special feelings being out there and it's going to be great. It's always great when we come in front of our people here at home."

The crowd will be emotional. Lynch might not be. Left tackle Donald Penn, one of Lynch's best friends on the team, says Beast Mode knows how to compartmentalize.

"I know he'll be happy, but he'll be cool about it," Penn said. "But, you know what? Marshawn is a professional on game day. He comes in there focused. We always joke around, but on game day he's a different person. He's a businessman. I know he's going to be excited. I hope we get him in the end zone this weekend in front of his home team."

Photo Credit: Scott Bair]]>
<![CDATA[Warriors' New 'The Town' Jersey Unveiled]]>Sat, 16 Sep 2017 13:04:17 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/160*160/town.jpg

The Warriors' new alternate jersey, which will honor Oakland with "The Town" written across the chest, has been unveiled. 

Check out the look, which was first released by Marcus Thompson of The Athletic

"The Town" jerseys will officially go on sale starting Nov. 24, according to The Athletic. On the next day, the Warriors will first wear these alternate jerseys against the Pelicans.

Oakland will wear the jerseys on Saturdays and on several dates during Black History Month to honor Oakland's African-American history. 

The following 10 games are proposed home dates for the Warriors to wear their "The Town" jerseys, according to The Athletic.

November 25 vs. New Orleans

December 23 vs. Denver

December 30 vs. Memphis

January 27 vs. Boston 

February 6 vs. Oklahoma City 

February 8 vs. Dallas

February 10 vs. San Antonio 

February 12 vs. Phoenix 

February 22 vs. Los Angele Clippers

April 7 vs. New Orleans

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff
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<![CDATA[Another Night, Another Dodgers Ace Shuts Down Giants]]>Wed, 13 Sep 2017 21:21:27 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/176*120/giants-0913.jpg

SAN FRANCISCO — Before the first game of this series, Bruce Bochy called the weekend's losses in Chicago the worst back-to-back performances of the season. On Tuesday and Wednesday, the Giants tried to give those White Sox games a run for their money.

A night after a sluggish loss to Clayton Kershaw, the Giants had moments that were downright embarrassing. They lost 4-1, mustering just five singles against struggling trade-deadline addition Yu Darvish and two relievers.

With 14 games remaining, the Giants have the worst record in Major League Baseball.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Dispute Over Sale of Mavericks Surf Contest Heads to Court]]>Thu, 14 Sep 2017 05:14:58 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/4_mavericks_surfing1.jpg

One thing's for sure: You can't have more than one surfer on a wave.

But, as NBC Bay Area has been reporting, there are a lot of potential riders vying to be the one atop the Mavericks Big Wave Surf Contest.

This Friday, the current, though disputed, contest organizer, Cartel Management of Los Angeles, will go to bankruptcy court to try to get the go-ahead to sell the contest rights to the World Surf League for $525,000.

The sale comes as Cartel attempts to sell assets after seeking Chapter 11 protection during this past season, which basically killed the contest.

The Mavericks contest is an international competition in which the world's top surfers are given 48 hours to show up at Pillar Point, near Half Moon Bay, once the waves are deemed worthy.

But Cartel lost an $812,000 lawsuit to Segler Holdings of Texas in June 2015 over a botched promotion of a tanning product.

Now, Segler has filed an objection to Cartel's sale to the WSL, essentially saying the deal won't cover Cartel's outstanding debt and is not in the "best interests" of the bankruptcy estate.

Plus, Cartel's former partner, Titans of Mavericks, is also now trying to block the sale accusing Cartel of "deceiving" the Harbor District in issuing the 5-year contest permit only to Cartel.

All the parties plan to show up in court.

Photo Credit: AP file]]>
<![CDATA[A's Score Four in First, Beat Red Sox in Boston]]>Wed, 13 Sep 2017 19:02:42 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/as-red+sox-0913.jpg

The A's offense came to play and plated four runs in the first inning as they went on and tagged starter Doug Fister for six runs in a 7-3 road win over the Red Sox.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Kershaw, Dodgers Beat Giants to Snap 11-Game Skid]]>Tue, 12 Sep 2017 22:32:29 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/186*120/giants-0912.jpg

SAN FRANCISCO — You have to play just about flawless baseball to beat Clayton Kershaw. On this night, the Giants played like the 2017 Giants.

Three defensive misplays — including two blunders in the outfield — helped the Dodgers build an early lead for Kershaw. They got a lead to Kenley Jansen and he did the rest, recording the final four outs to give the Dodgers a 5-3 win at AT&T Park that snapped their stunning 11-game losing streak. Jansen loaded the bases in the ninth, but he struck out Buster Posey and Nick Hundley to end it.

For the Giants, this was simply loss No. 90, one like many of the others. Here are five things to know ...

-- Johnny Cueto had good stuff, but his defense gave him no shot to go head-to-head with Kershaw. Cueto was pulled with two outs in the fourth after Yasiel Puig hit a two-run double on his 101st pitch. The right-hander threw 10 extra pitches in the fourth because Hunter Pence let a pop-up drop in front of him, and he lost two outs in the fourth when Austin Slater lost a fly ball in the lights and Kelby Tomlinson and Orlando Calixte failed to connect on a grounder.

-- Cueto was given a lead on a shocking swing. Tomlinson took Kershaw deep to left in the third, picking up his first homer in 280 at-bats. The homer was just the third of Tomlinson’s career, and at 393 feet it was his longest batted ball in the majors.

-- No player has faced Kershaw more than Posey, and on Tuesday they went over the 100-at-bat mark. Posey had a single and flied out to right twice. In 101 career at-bats against Kershaw, Posey has 25 hits, including three homers and three doubles. He has struck out 16 times and hit into five double plays.

-- It was a night of mistakes, including on the bases. With catcher Nick Hundley on second and two outs in the fourth, Tomlinson lined a single up the middle. Phil Nevin waved Hundley all the way and Chris Taylor made a perfect throw from center. Hundley was out by nearly 30 feet.

-- The Giants intentionally walked 22-year-old Cody Bellinger three times, making him the first Dodger in 13 years to get that treatment. Get used to it.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[A's Streak Ends as Manaea is Roughed Up By Red Sox]]>Tue, 12 Sep 2017 20:00:36 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/as-redsox-0912.jpg

BOSTON — Leave it to Fenway Park to halt the A’s joyride.

They brought a five-game winning streak and red-hot offense into the major leagues’ oldest ballpark Tuesday, only to get grounded in an 11-1 rout by the Boston Red Sox.

Any surprise that the good vibes would end here? The A’s have lost seven in a row in Boston, and going back further, 29 of their past 38. But their offense set out for this nine-game road trip on a tear, having scored 41 runs in a four-game sweep of Houston, their second-most in a four-game series in Oakland history.

Despite taking a first-inning lead against lefty Eduardo Rodriguez, the A’s mustered just three hits total. Meanwhile, a stretch of solid starting pitching came to an end as Sean Manaea (10-10) got knocked around for seven runs in just 3 2/3 innings.

In two starts at Fenway, the lefty has surrendered 15 earned runs in just 6 1/3 innings. All told, it was a reversal of all that went so well for Oakland during its season high-tying five-game winning streak. The A’s even kicked in two errors on the night.

The Red Sox, meanwhile collected 16 hits and right fielder Mookie Betts homered twice and had six RBI as Boston increased its American League East lead to four games over the second-place Yankees.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Report: A's to Build New Stadium on Land Near Laney College]]>Tue, 12 Sep 2017 23:04:51 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/melvin-kaval-ap.jpg

After a lot of speculation, the A's have decided where their next home will be.

The team plans to build a new privately-financed stadium on a plot of land near Laney College in downtown Oakland, according to The San Francisco Chronicle.

"Finally, we've got our site. It's really the strongest location when it comes to private financing, and that's really an important component to be successful," team president Dave Kaval told the publication on Tuesday night.

The A's had been deciding between the land at Laney, the existing Coliseum site and Howard Terminal.

Kaval and the A's have made good on their promise to announce their future home before the end of the calendar year.

"We firmly believe that the Peralta site represents the best opportunity to keep Oakland's last professional sports team in Oakland for the long term," Kaval told The Chronicle.

The A's have played at the Coliseum since 1968.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Marshawn Unscripted? Lynch to Get His Own Reality Show]]>Tue, 12 Sep 2017 18:21:01 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/marshawn-jdrpresser-ap.jpg

Marshawn Lynch is getting his own reality show. Naturally. The always entertaining Raiders running back will star in "No Script," a weekly series of short features that will air on Facebook.

Each episode will be 10-15 minutes long, and should start streaming later this month. Lynch's Beast Mode Productions will produce it in conjunction with Bleacher Report's entertainment division.

You'll surely get some behind-the-scenes action of Marshawn being Marshawn after games and away from the training facility.

Lynch doesn't give many interviews, but is generally funny when put in front of a camera. Facebook reportedly paid a significant sum to get the Lynch web series running.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Bay Area Sports Legends Team Up for Go-Kart Racing Benefit]]>Mon, 11 Sep 2017 22:10:47 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/karting-0911.jpg

Some popular former Bay Area athletes got together with some of the best Indy Car drivers in the world Monday to race go-karts for a good cause.

On the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the groups gathered at K1 Speed in South San Francisco to do some karting and raise funds for the families of fallen Navy SEALs.

Indy Racing League drivers JR Hildebrand and Alexander Rossi were on hand. Among the Bay Area legends were former 49ers receiver Terrell Owens, former Giants first baseman J.T. Snow, former Sharks captain Owen Nolan and Olympic gold medalist Natalie Coughlin.

Owens and Snow were known for their agility on the field, but that wasn't the case Monday as they collided with each other on the race course.

"Yeah, yeah, that was a piece of cake," Owens said. "I've gone across the middle a few times here and there, taken a couple licks. ... For a split second, you really don't know what's happening until you kind of, as I saw, the tires roll off my shoulders. But yeah, accidents happen."

Proceeds from the friendly competition benefited the SEAL Legacy Foundation, which provides support for families of wounded and fallen SEALs as well as educational assistance for SEALs and their families.

"That is the calling, September 11th, of just about everyone, every SEAL when we're forward on the battlefield or we're home training, of why we do what we do," founder Jon Dalton said.

Just like in their playing days, Nolan and Coughlin held nothing back.

"They're quick for sure," Nolan said. "And to have all these athletes out here; you know, we might be all retired, but that competitive edge never goes away. So we're rubbing each other out there, trying to get every inch we can."

Coughlin, a 12-time Olympic medalist swimmer, was the only woman out there.

"I was looking on the roster, and I was a little surprised I was the only female. But I'm used to it," Coughlin said. "I was the only female on an all-male team for four years, so I can hold my own with a bunch of dudes."

Despite being taken out by Snow, T.O.'s team was the winner.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Steph Curry Posts #freekaep on Instagram at 49ers' Opener]]>Sun, 10 Sep 2017 19:23:57 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/160*285/stephkap.jpg

Stephen Curry is the ultimate Panthers fan. Apparently he's a pretty big fan of Colin Kaepernick too.

Before his favorite team played the 49ers at Levi's Stadium, Curry showed support for Kaepernick, posting #freekaep on his Instagram story. 

Kaepernick remains unsigned with the NFL's regular season underway. The former 49ers quarterback sat and then took a knee during the national anthem throughout the 2016 season, protesting social injustices against African Americans. 

During the anthem on Sunday, 49ers safety Eric Reid took a knee with several teammates placing a hand on his shoulders. 

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Last-Place A's Sweep 4 Games From First-Place Astros]]>Sun, 10 Sep 2017 16:44:42 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/chapman-homer-astros-athletics-usatsi.jpg


OAKLAND  - Astros ace Dallas Keuchel walked in two runs and hit a batter to force in another during a shaky sixth inning, and the Oakland Athletics completed a four-game sweep of Houston with a 10-2 victory on Sunday.

The Astros entered the day tied with Cleveland for the best record in the AL, but their pitching has fallen apart at the Coliseum. Oakland rallied from behind in each of the first three games of the series, including one in which Houston's bullpen brought in five runs with bases-loaded walks.

Keuchel (12-4) never had a lead in the finale. He had allowed only two runs over 21 2/3 innings in three games against the A's this season and was doing well again until the sixth, when he lost control and labored through a 40-pitch inning.

The left-hander gave up a leadoff single to Jed Lowrie, then walked three of the next four to push in the go-ahead run. Two batters after hitting Mark Canha with a bases-loaded pitch, Keuchel walked home another to extend Oakland's lead to 4-1 and end his day. Keuchel allowed four runs over 5 2/3 innings.

Oakland piled on against the bullpen with two runs in the seventh and four in the eighth.

Jose Altuve had two hits and J.D. Davis added a pinch-hit home run for the Astros. Houston was outscored in the four-game series 41-15.

The Astros frustrations boiled over in the fifth when Jake Marisnick was ejected for arguing balls and strikes. Marisnick struck out looking twice and was upset the second time, angrily slamming his bat and helmet to the ground before getting thrown out by home plate umpire Ramon De Jesus.

Kendall Graveman (5-4) pitched five-hit ball over six innings and allowed one run for Oakland.

Matt Chapman, Ryon Healy, Boog Powell and Matt Olson homered as the A's completed their second four-game sweep this year. It's the second time in Oakland history that the team has swept a pair of four-game series in the same season.


Astros: Right-hander Collin McHugh will skip his scheduled start Thursday because of a lingering fingernail issue on his pitching hand. Brad Peacock will pitch in McHugh's place. ... Juan Centeno is expected to miss a few days with a mild concussion after being hit in the facemask by Lowrie's swing Saturday.


Astros: RHP Justin Verlander (11-8) faces the Angels on Tuesday in his second start with Houston since being acquired from Detroit. Verlander is 6-8 lifetime against the Angels.

Athletics: Following a day off Monday, LHP Sean Manaea (10-9, 4.33 ERA) pitches against Boston in the opener of a three-game series on Tuesday.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Mistake-Prone Niners Fall Hard in Opener to Panthers]]>Sun, 10 Sep 2017 15:53:15 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/189*120/Hoysackeddd.jpg

If Game 1 is any indication, the 2017 season could be a tough one for the 49ers. In the team’s regular-season opener Sunday at Levi’s Stadium, the Niners were dominated by the Carolina Panthers in a 23-3 loss.

Though the 49ers -- with new head coach Kyle Shanahan, new offensive and defensive schemes and an enormous turnover of players from 2016's two-win season -- came into the season optimistic they could take some big steps this season, their first step didn't go well.

Quarterback Brian Hoyer threw an interception and lost a fumble, the running game could muster just 51 yards and San Francisco couldn’t get on the scoreboard – with a 44-yard field by Robbie Gould – until it was trailing 23-0 in the fourth quarter.

But, it could have been worse. Much worse.

In the first quarter, standout rookie linebacker Reuben Foster suffered an injury to his right ankle and had to be taken off the field in a cart. Just like that, Foster – who already had three tackles by that point – appeared possibly done for the season with a severe injury.

But later, Foster returned to the sideline, walking on his own power, with the initial diagnosis being a high ankle sprain according to Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee. Foster could miss some time, but it’s likely he’ll be back on the field soon (unless further testst reveal something more serious).

The 49ers were plagued by mistakes on Sunday. They committed 10 penalties for 74 yards, lost the ball twice, gave up four sacks and converted just 2-of-11 third-down plays. The 49ers also gambled four times on fourth down and converted just once. On defense, the 49ers didn’t register a single sack. Safety Jacquiski Tartt had the highlight, an interception return of 37 yards, while also leading his team with seven tackles.

As a passer, Hoyer showed he could be an improvement over last year’s quarterbacks, completing 24-of 35 throws for 193 yards. But his average of just 8.04 yards per completion was disappointing. His main targets were wide receiver Pierre Garcon (six catches, 81 yards), running back Carlos Hyde (six for 32) and rookie tight end George Kittle (five for 27).

The 49ers had hoped to have a better running attack this season, but running behind a revamped offensive line, Hyde and rookie Matt Breida combined to gain 56 yards on just 13 carries.

The 49ers will try to turn things around this coming Sunday in Seattle against the Seahawks.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Shanahan Era Starts Ugly for 49ers in Loss to Panthers]]>Sun, 10 Sep 2017 22:24:26 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/Week149ersGallery6.jpg

SANTA CLARA – The area of quarterback Brian Hoyer’s game that provided the 49ers with their most-pleasant surprise during training camp was his ability to throw the deep ball.

And it did not take long for everyone to see him loft a well-thrown deep down the field. On the 49ers’ first possession, speedster Marquise Goodwin ran under the pass for what looked the kind of big play that is a function of Kyle Shanahan’s offense.

But Goodwin dropped the ball. It was just the first of many glaring mistakes and miscalculations for the 49ers in Shanahan’s regular-season debut – a 23-3 loss to the Carolina Panthers on Sunday at Levi’s Stadium.

Shanahan brings a proven offensive system with him to the 49ers after fielding top-10 units in six of his nine years as an NFL offensive coordinator. But in his first game as coach, it was apparent just how much work is in front of Shanahan and general manager John Lynch.

The 49ers opened the season with 30 newcomers on their 53-man roster. But during Week 1, there was no erasing the memory of last year’s 2-14 team in Chip Kelly’s one-and-only season with the club.

Goodwin dropped the deep ball. And one play after dynamic rookie linebacker Reuben Foster was sidelined with a right ankle injury, free safety Jaquiski Tartt gave up a deep pass, then failed to make the tackle on Russell Shepard en route to a 40-yard touchdown pass from Cam Newton.

Hoyer was sacked four times in the first half, including a sack-strip that left guard Zane Beadles surrendered that led to the Panthers’ first touchdown of the game. Hoyer gave the Panthers a gift early in the third quarter with an interception to Luke Kuechly. Carolina turned that into a touchdown for a 20-0 lead.

The 49ers were penalized 10 times for 74 yards in the first half, including two illegal-formation flags. There were dropped passes, missed tackles and no semblance of a pass rush from defensive coordinator Robert Saleh’s unit.

Shanahan miscalculated twice in the second quarter, twice turning the ball over on downs near midfield. The Panthers capitalized on both situations with field goals, including Graham Gano’s 36-yarder on the final play of the first half.

Hoyer completed 24 of 35 passes for 193 yards with no touchdowns and one interception in his 49ers debut. Hoyer has played for seven teams throughout his nine-year career.

FOSTER SIDELINED: Foster went down in the first half with a right ankle injury while tackling rookie running back Christian McCaffrey. Foster was taken off the field in a cart for further observation in the 49ers’ locker room. While Foster did not return to action, he did return to the 49ers under his own power to spend the rest of the first half on the team’s sideline. He watched the second half on the sideline without cleats or pads.

THIS ‘N’ THAT: Tartt made the start at free safety in place of Jimmie Ward, who has yet to make it through a full practice after sustaining a hamstring injury during the team’s conditioning test on the eve of training camp.

Tartt had a rough game but did supply a highlight reel play with a one-handed interception of a deep Newton pass in the first half. After giving up the long touchdown pass to Shepard, Tartt was also called for unnecessary roughness penalty against tight end Greg Olsen after a pass Newton badly overthrew.

--Rookie George Kittle started at tight end and caught five passes for 27 yards.

--Slot receiver Trent Taylor caught one pass for 8 yards and handled the punt return chores in his NFL debut. He had one return for 9 yards and a fair catch.

--Cornerback Rashard Robinson forced and recovered a fumble against Christian McCaffrey in the fourth quarter but the 49ers were unable to capitalize. The offense ended up turning it over on downs for the third time in the game.

--Running back Carlos Hyde gained 45 yards on nine rushing attempts. He also caught six passes for 32 yards.

--The 49ers honored former fullback and assistant coach Tom Rathman at halftime. Rathman was officially inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame during a ceremony Saturday night at Levi’s Stadium.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Deal to Sell Mavericks Surf Contest at a Stalemate]]>Thu, 07 Sep 2017 06:18:14 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/4_mavericks_surfing.jpg

The wave of optimism that the Mavericks big wave surf contest would resurface seems to have crashed again.

The world famous surf contest held at Pillar Point, near Half Moon Bay, had been in limbo after the current organizer, Cartel Management, filed for bankruptcy protection.

Hopes were raised in August, when Cartel asked the bankruptcy court to approve a $525,000 sale to the World Surf League, which runs other major surfing competitions.

But some of Cartel's past legal battles have come back to threaten the deal.

According to court papers filed Wednesday, Segler Holdings LLC, a Texas company, objected to the sale, saying it is not in the best interest of the bankruptcy estate.

As NBC Bay Area reported, Segler sued Cartel and its client model-actress Marisa Miller for breach of contract in June 2015 after a failed promotion of a sunless tanning line.

After a jury trial, the court awarded Segler $700,000 plus interest, which Segler said totaled nearly $812,000.

Segler approved delays to allow cartel to hold an auction in May 2016 to sell the contest permit and other assets. But Cartel canceled the auction at the last minute.

Court papers indicate Cartel canceled the aucition because another group seeking money and ownership, Mavericks Invitational Inc., had interfered with the sales efforts by filing what Cartel called, a "frivolous" claim for $2.145 million.

Segler wants to stop the WSL deal because it says the $525,000 is less than 20 percent of the total money owed and barely half of the court-approved minimum auction bid of $1 million.

The new legal twist will not only complicate ownership of the contest but also will resurrect a hotly disputed issue when the harbor district issued a 5-year permit to Cartel instead of a standard one-year deal, which some board members, including Commissioner Sabrina Brennan, said caused the legal turmoil.

Photo Credit: AP file]]>
<![CDATA[Panik Sets Franchise Mark, Giants Finally Win at Coors Field]]>Wed, 06 Sep 2017 23:07:08 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/giants-0906.jpg

DENVER — Before Wednesday’s game, a Giant stood in the dugout and tried to make sense of this season. He noted that it seems the team finds a different way to lose every night. On Wednesday, the Giants found a very strange way to win.

Two big early rallies were built on misplays by all-world third baseman Nolan Arenado, who had — you can check the records on this one — never before had a bad moment against the Giants. Arenado’s error in the first opened the gates for two runs, and he couldn’t glove a hard shot a couple innings later, allowing two more to score on a Gorkys Hernandez single.

Joe Panik took care of the rest. Panik had five more hits, giving him 12 for the series. Panik became the first player in franchise history to record 12 hits in a three-game series, and he did the heavy lifting in an 11-3 win over the Rockies.

The win was the Giants' first at Coors Field in exactly one year. Here are five things to know ...

-- It’s possible that Panik won’t get on the flight out of town. After three hits in the opener and four on Tuesday, Panik got to five with singles up the middle in his last two at-bats Wednesday. He raised his average from .267 to .285 during the three-game series.

-- Johnny Cueto brought the goods. He ended his night by blowing a high fastball past Arenado to strand a runner. Cueto gave up five hits and one earned run in five innings, striking out seven. He very much looked like the 2016 version of Johnny Cueto, which is a good sign for 2018.

-- Austin Slater’s first at-bat since July 7 came in the first inning with the bases loaded and two outs. He smoked the first pitch back up the middle for a two-run single. Slater went 0-for-4 the rest of the night.

-- Mac Williamson took 97 mph the other way in the seventh for a deep homer. It was the second pinch-hit homer of Williamson’s career. Maybe they should play him more? You know, see if there’s more where that came from?

-- Nick Hundley tacked on with a 445-foot homer in the eighth. The blast was Hundley’s seventh. The Giants should bring him back.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Report: Raiders, Janikowski Resolve Contractual Differences ]]>Wed, 06 Sep 2017 19:35:35 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/janikowski-happy-ap.jpg

After a few days of nervousness over Sebastian Janikowski's status with the Raiders, all appears to be well.

The Raiders and their long-time kicker have resolved their contractual differences, according to ESPN.

Janikowski is scheduled to make $4.05 million in base salary this season. The Raiders have reportedly been asking the 39-year-old to take a paycut, but he had been balking.

Terms of the resolution were not immediately known.

Earlier on Wednesday, head coach Jack Del Rio spoke with the media and addressed the recent reports of a contract impasse with the veteran kicker.

"I think it was a case that took on a life of its own with reporting and speculating. We're doing our due diligence. We'll see how the week goes," Del Rio said.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[A's Beat Angels in Chippy Affair, End Eight-Game Skid]]>Wed, 06 Sep 2017 23:07:47 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/184*120/as-angels-0906.jpg

OAKLAND — In a game that included some unusual controversy, a trace of normalcy returned for the A’s pitching staff. That paved the way to a 3-1 victory over the Los Angeles Angels that snapped Oakland’s season-high eight-game losing streak.

Sean Manaea pitched into the seventh inning and tied his career high with 115 pitches. It was the kind of stabilizing effort the A’s badly needed as their starters have struggled mightily of late.

Manaea (10-9) gave up five hits and struck out six over six-plus innings, becoming just the fifth Oakland starter in the past nine games to complete more than four innings.

The A’s had just taken a 1-0 lead on Khris Davis’ 39th homer in the bottom of the fourth when tensions escalated. Rookie third baseman Matt Chapman was ejected by home plate umpire Mike Everitt when he began jawing with Angels catcher Juan Graterol as he was digging in to the box to begin his at-bat.

It wasn’t the first signal of tension in the early innings of this game, as Graterol and A’s center fielder Mark Canha exchanged words before and after Graterol went out to the mound in the second to talk to Angels starter Tyler Skaggs.

After that second-inning incident, replays showed Everitt talking to someone in the Angels dugout and the words “stealing a sign” could be heard. It appeared the Angels were accusing the A’s of stealing signs.

Sign-stealing is at the forefront of everyone’s thoughts around the game right now after the revelation of the Boston Red Sox reportedly using electronic technology in stealing signs from the New York Yankees.

At any rate, Chapman began exchanging words with Graterol in the fourth before he even saw a pitch from Angels starter Tyler Skaggs. Everett quickly got between Chapman and Graterol and then the umpire began lecturing Chapman. A few moments later, Everett ejected Chapman. Renato Nunez pinch-hit for him and took over at third base. Aside from that, the game played out in conventional fashion and clocked in at a reasonable 3 hours, 10 minutes. From that standpoint, it was different from the first two games of this three-game set, both Angels wins and both marathon extra-inning games that featured both managers making rapid-fire pitching changes with expanded bullpens at their disposal.

The A’s scored twice in the fifth to increase their lead to 3-0 on Chad Pinder’s RBI single to score Marcus Semien, and a Davis fly ball that got lost in the sun by Justin Upton for a run-scoring error. With Blake Treinen unavaialble, Chris Hatcher closed out the ninth for his first save in the American League.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[More Sign Stealing? Tensions Rise Between A's and Angels]]>Wed, 06 Sep 2017 14:24:45 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/chapman-ejection-angels-usatsi.jpg

OAKLAND - A's third baseman Matt Chapman was ejected in the fourth inning of Wednesday's game after jawing with Angels catcher Juan Graterol as he dug in to start his at-bat.

It wasn't the first signal of tension in the early innings of this game, as Graterol and A's center fielder Mark Canha exchanged words before and after Graterol went out to the mound in the second to talk to Angels starter Tyler Skaggs.

After that second-inning incident, replays showed home plate umpire Mike Everett talking to someone in the Angels dugout and the words "stealing a sign" are heard. It could be the Angels were accusing the A's of stealing signs.

Sign-stealing is at the forefront of everyone's thoughts around the game right now after the revelation of the Boston Red Sox reportedly using electronic technology in stealing signs from the New York Yankees.

At any rate, Chapman began exchanging words with Graterol in the fourth just as he was digging in to the batter's box to begin his at-bat. Everett quickly got between Chapman and Graterol and then the umpire began lecturing Chapman. A few moments later, Everett ejected Chapman. Renato Nunez pinch-hit for him and took over at third base.

The A's, trying to snap an eight-game losing streak, led 3-0 entering the bottom of the sixth.

Photo Credit: Joe Stiglich]]>
<![CDATA[Comeback Falls Short, Giants Lose to Rockies]]>Tue, 05 Sep 2017 20:31:10 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/span-bochy-rockies-usatsi.jpg


DENVER — Bruce Bochy was out on the field 15 minutes before batting practice on Tuesday, chatting it up with counterpart Bud Black. Perhaps they made some sort of a wager.

Bochy used seven different pitchers in eight innings, with Reyes Moronta and Roberto Gomez making their MLB debuts in the three-pitcher bottom of the seventh. Black countered with nine pitchers, and he also got the win.

The Rockies took the second game of the series 9-6, dropping the Giants into last place in the MLB standings. On the other hand, that means they’re in first place in the race for the No. 1 pick. So there’s that.

The night proved painful in many ways for the Giants. Buster Posey took a foul tip off the hand in the bottom of the eighth and was removed right away. We’ll update that here shortly. For now, here are five things to know …

—- The Giants blew an opportunity to get Tyler Chatwood out of the game even earlier than the fourth. Brandon Crawford and Pablo Sandoval hit into double plays in the first two innings. Posey struck out with two on in the third and Hunter Pence took an awkward wave at a two-out, two-strike pitch with the bases loaded.

—- A day after picking up three hits, Joe Panik had four more. The outburst has raised Panik’s average 11 points in two days, but it shouldn’t be all that surprising. He has a .327 average on the road this season.

—- Sandoval was hitless in four at-bats. He doesn’t have a hit in his last 37 at-bats, tying Johnnie LeMaster’s San Francisco-era franchise record.

—- Ty Blach had a rough homecoming. Pitching in front of friends and family, Blach was charged with five earned in 5 1/3 innings. He appeared to run out of steam, and three of those runs came in the sixth. It’s been a long season for the young pitcher.

—- Rockies right-hander Carlos Estevez uses “Wild Thing” as his warm-up song. That’s an awesome move, when you give it a little thought.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Not a Hazard: FAA Clears Plan for Raiders Las Vegas Stadium]]>Wed, 06 Sep 2017 08:05:38 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/plane-moon-ap.jpg

LAS VEGAS -- The Federal Aviation Administration has determined that the Oakland Raiders' proposed stadium in Las Vegas would not be a hazard to aircraft.

The federal agency's decision announced Tuesday clears the way for officials in Nevada's Clark County to consider approving construction permits.

County officials are expected to consider zoning permits at a Wednesday meeting.

The FAA last month issued a notice requesting public comments on the proposed 65,000-seat stadium. It later cut the five-week public comment period by three weeks. The change allowed the $1.9 billion project to stay on schedule.

The agency's review of the project concerned the stadium's proposed 225-foot height.

The Raiders want to play in Las Vegas in 2020. Their ambitious construction timeline for the partly tax-funded stadium calls for some site work to begin by December.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Report: Raiders, Janikowski at 'Contractual Standoff']]>Mon, 04 Sep 2017 18:13:31 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/janikowski-sideline-usatsi.jpg

After 17 years together, the Raiders and kicker Sebastian Janikowski appear to have hit a rough patch.

The team and the 39-year-old are reportedly in a "contractual standoff."

According to ESPN, the issue could impact whether Janikowski plays for the Raiders during the 2017 season.

Janikowski is entering the final year of a four-year contract. He is scheduled to make $4.05 million this season and then become an unrestricted free agent.

According to the report, the team has been trying to redo Janikowski's current contract, but the kicker is not budging.

On Monday, the Raiders brought in three kickers -- Mike Nugent, Josh Lambo and Marshall Koehn - for a workout, according to ESPN.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Olson Homers Twice, A's Rally, But Fall to Angels in Extras]]>Mon, 04 Sep 2017 19:34:29 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/angels-score-athletics-usatsi.jpg


OAKLAND -- Angels manager Mike Scioscia had no idea he called upon an American League-record 12 pitchers to win on Labor Day.

"Both teams or us?" he asked. "If I had needed a couple more innings, we would have used probably 13 or 14. Hopefully not too often."

Instead of extending the game Monday, Kole Calhoun delivered with a two-run triple in the 11th inning as the Angels outlasted the Oakland Athletics 11-9.

Fernando Salas (1-0), the ninth Angels pitcher, tossed a perfect 10th for the victory. Keynan Middleton came in as the third pitcher of the 11th and got his third career save as Los Angeles tried to move up in the wild-card race.

"That's big. It takes momentum into tomorrow," Calhoun said.

The A's have lost as season-high seven in a row.

Three Angels pitchers didn't record an out. The 12 pitchers overall topped the previous AL mark of 11 done four times, most recently by Tampa Bay in 2013. The Colorado Rockies set a major league record by using 13 pitchers in 2015 during a 16-inning game.

"Thank God for September," said Jesse Chavez, who pitched the fourth for Los Angeles and praised the versatile staff. "That just goes back to how we are in spring training. ... We don't let anybody feel neglected."

Angels star Mike Trout fouled a ball off his lower right leg in the 11th but stayed in the game after being checked by Scioscia and a trainer.

Matt Olson homered twice for Oakland, including a tying, two-run drive with two outs in the ninth against Blake Parker.

"Losing a game like that isn't fun by any means," Olson said. "But it says something the way we stayed in that game the entire time, still fighting in the bottom of the 11th right there."

Blake Treinen (1-3) gave up Calhoun's go-ahead hit.

Martin Maldonado hit two home runs for the Angels, his second multihomer game this season. Luis Valbuena added a three-run drive.

Albert Pujols had three hits and drove in a run. He has 12 RBIs over his last five games and 23 in the past 21.

While Los Angeles starter Parker Birdwell didn't get a decision while pitching into the fourth, the Angels improved to 14-2 in his outings this year.

Khris Davis hit a three-run double and Bruce Maxwell added an RBI single in the first inning to A's starter Chris Smith a nice cushion. But Smith couldn't hold the lead, and has surrendered 10 home runs over his last five starts.

A's hitting coach Darren Bush was ejected in the fifth after Matt Chapman was called out on strikes.

The Angels' last four games have gone: 4 hours, 33 minutes, 4:09, 3:49 and 4:38 Monday. The club will have optional batting practice Tuesday "so they can regroup, rebound," Scioscia said.

Chavez made a thoughtful pregame gesture on his way to the field to throw in warmups: He carried a load of food for Diamond Level concession worker Connie Burgin, who called the former A's player a "sweetie." She said she didn't ask for assistance, he kindly offered. After the game, Chavez noted that his long arms were an asset in this situation and he saw that the woman was trying to pick up the large tray.

"He's the best," Scioscia said.

Angels: RHP Bud Norris threw a bullpen session as he works back from his second stint on the disabled list with right knee inflammation. He could be activated as soon as Wednesday when eligible. ... 3B Yunel Escobar took some swings as part of his rehab from a strained right oblique. ... The Angels claimed RHP Dayan Diaz from the Astros and designated for assignment RHP Daniel Wright to clear room on the 40-man roster. Diaz was optioned to rookie-level Orem.

Athletics: RHP Paul Blackburn, on the DL since Aug. 23 with a bruised pitching hand, might not play again this season given the bone bruise is deep enough it's comparable to a fracture. Blackburn is set to compete for a rotation spot in spring training 2018, manager Bob Melvin said.

Angels: RHP Garrett Richards (0-0, 0.00 ERA) makes his second start of the year five months to the day after an April 5 outing at Oakland in which he strained his right biceps muscle in his season debut. He is expected to throw just 50 pitches.

Athletics: RHP Kendall Graveman (4-4, 4.54) had a no-decision against the Angels on the road his last time out in a 10-8 loss last Wednesday.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[ Coors Field Woes Continue, Giants Fall in Walk-off Fashion]]>Mon, 04 Sep 2017 16:37:09 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/giants-0904.jpg


DENVER — The Rockies are in a funk right now, one that has them in danger of giving up a wild card spot that has seemed a lock all season long. Enter the Giants.

A misplay in the outfield opened the door for the Rockies to get a 4-3 walk-off win. Charlie Blackmon kicked off the ninth with a high pop-up to left center. The outfielders were playing on the track, and Mac Williamson dropped the ball as he made a diving attempt. Two walks — one a smart intentional pass for Nolan Arenado — loaded the bases and a walk of Carlos Gonzalez ended the game.

The Giants have lost nine straight games at Coors Field, the last two via a walk-off. They haven’t won here since Sept. 6 of last season. That’s no way to go through life. Anyway, here are five things to know …

—- Joe Panik hit one off the second deck facing in the first and Denard Span hit the exact same shot two innings later. Both players reached double-digit homers, giving the Giants five players with ten or more. Panik needs one more to set a new career-high.

—- Span and Panik, hitting first and second, combined for six hits. The rest of the Giants combined for one.

—- Pablo Sandoval went 0-for-4. He is hitless in his last 33 at-bats. That is the longest streak by a Giant since Johnnie LeMaster made 37 consecutive outs in 1984.

—- Chris Stratton was charged with three runs on eight hits in just four innings, but he actually did a decent job while starting at Coors for the first time. Stratton got Gerardo Parra to ground out with the bases loaded in the fourth, keeping the Giants in the game.

—- Blackmon took Stratton deep for his 33rd — seriously, 33rd — homer. Blackmon is on pace to score 143 runs. He’s the MVP candidate nobody talks about.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[A's Fall to Mariners, Finish Road Trip 0-6]]>Sun, 03 Sep 2017 23:06:11 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/173*120/as-mariners-0903.jpg

SEATTLE — The A’s must be happy they’re heading home after a winless six-game road trip that concluded Sunday.

The Mariners would have liked them to stick around a bit longer.

They took three in a row from Oakland and climbed to within 2 1/2 games of the American League’s second Wild Card spot with Sunday’s 10-2 victory. Before arriving in the Pacific Northwest, the A’s were swept by the Los Angeles Angels, who themselves are fighting for a postseason spot.

This isn’t the way the A’s want to impact the playoff race. After sweeping the Rangers at home last week, they’ve dropped a season-high tying six in a row and are 3-6 in this stretch of 15 consecutive games against AL West opponents.

Seattle lefty Andrew Albers (3-1) held the A’s hitless until the sixth Sunday, when Matt Olson hit an opposite field homer to pull the A’s to within 3-1. It felt like the A’s were trailing by more all afternoon however. They were out-hit 17-5, with the Mariners pouring it on with three runs in the eighth inning.

Mariners right fielder Mitch Haniger went 4-for-5 with two RBI and a homer. For the series, Seattle hit eight homers total off A’s pitching.

STRUGGLING STARTERS: One of the themes of the 0-6 trip was Oakland starters not pitching deep enough into games. Rookie Daniel Gossett (3-8) had trouble locating the strike zone and lasted just 3 2/3 innings, the third time in six games on the trip that the A’s starter went four innings or less. Gossett walked five, gave up three runs and threw just 46 strikes compared to 43 balls among his 89 pitches.

ROUGH RETURN: Top prospect Franklin Barreto spelled Jed Lowrie at second base, his first action since being recalled from the minors Friday. Barreto went 0-for-4, striking out swinging in his first two at-bats and grounding into a double play as the A’s were trying to rally from a 5-2 deficit in the eighth. Before the game, manager Bob Melvin said Barreto is likely to get a little time at shortstop as well as second base before the season wraps.

OLSON REBOUNDS: After a rough game Saturday, first baseman Matt Olson drove in both A’s runs Sunday as part of a 2-for-3 day. Ryon Healy typically plays first base against lefty pitchers, but Melvin said the A’s envision Olson as an everyday player in the future, and he wanted Olson to face a left-hander. The night before, Olson struck out twice and committed two errors.

ALONSO HURTS HIS OLD TEAM: Mariners first baseman Yonder Alonso homered Saturday and singled to assist the game winning rally that night. On Sunday, he drove in another run as part of Seattle’s 17-hit attack. The A’s traded the All-Star to the Mariners on Aug. 6 for outfielder Boog Powell.

MORE ADDITIONS ON THE WAY: After Triple-A Nashville wraps up its season Monday, the A’s will call up more players to supplement their roster. Third baseman/outfielder Renato Nunez will be one of those, and Melvin mentioned perhaps another position player. Right now, given the struggles of Oakland’s starters, some pitching reinforcements appear the most crucial need.

“You always feel like you maybe have enough, and then something transpires and you don’t wanna get caught short,” Melvin said Sunday morning, before Gossett went out and lasted just 3 2/3 innings.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Five Takeaways From Giants' Frustrating Loss to Cardinals]]>Thu, 31 Aug 2017 21:50:03 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/giants-0831.jpg


SAN FRANCISCO - The Giants averaged 1.7 runs per game on their recent road trip. Until the bottom of the ninth Thursday, they were somehow sitting on the under. 

Brandon Crawford hit what appeared to be a two-run homer until the replay officials ruled that a fan interfered. Crawford was given an RBI double and he ended the game on second. That's been a theme for the Giants, who again failed to get going offensively. They lost 5-2 in the first game of a four-game set with the Cardinals. 

August was the best month of the season, but the Giants still finished with a losing record (13-16). Here are five things to know from the final game of the month … 

-- Matt Cain, the seventh starter in this rotation, did about all you can ask given the situation. With Madison Bumgarner scratched because of flu-like symptoms, Cain threw five innings and allowed just two runs. Randal Grichuk took him deep for a two-run shot in the second. 

-- Despite the down year, Hunter Pence hasn't lost an ounce of desire. He tagged from second on a fly ball to right in the fifth, making it a split-second ahead of the tag. That allowed Pence to score when pinch-hitter Carlos Moncrief followed with a fly ball to deep center. 

-- Pablo Sandoval hit third and went 0-for-4. He is hitless in his last 23 bats. Sandoval did, however, make a very nice diving stop in the eighth to rob Yadier Molina of a base hit. 

-- It was 80 degrees at first pitch. In theory, it should have been a great night for the hitters. But, you know ... 

-- Mark Melancon didn't pitch at all on the road trip, so he handled the top of the eighth inning Thursday. It did not go well. Melancon loaded the bases and then walked in a run. He drilled Tommy Pham to bring in another run. Melancon did not allow any runs in his first six appearances back from a long DL stint. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Seahawks Win Star-Free Matchup With Raiders]]>Thu, 31 Aug 2017 21:34:06 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/sakejmann.jpg

There was no Derek Carr or Marshawn Lynch. And Keon Hatcher, K.J. Brent and John Crockett were the Raiders’ top receivers Thursday night, not Amari Cooper, Michael Crabtree and Cordarrelle Patterson.

If fans were hoping to see some stars, the Oakland Coliseum was the wrong place to be Thursday night, where the exhibition game between the Seahawks and Raiders was a festival of players either fighting to win a last spot on the 53-man roster or hoping to catch the eye of another team after Saturday’s cut-down day.

As usual, the fourth and final exhibition game of the summer featured players even Raiders fans had trouble identifying.

The Raiders came away with a 17-13 loss, giving up a 16-yard touchdown pass from Austin Davis to Kenny Lawler with just over a minute remaining.

Much more important than the decision, however, was the fact key Raiders starters never touched the field Thursday night, meaning they’re healthy to play in the regular-season opener Sept. 10 vs. the Tennessee Titans.

The Seahawks took a 10-0 lead in the first quarter on a Blair Walsh 21-yard field goal, followed by Rodney Smith’s 34-yard touchdown catch from Trevone Boykin.

The Raiders came back in the second quarter on Hatcher’s 18-yard pass from E.J. Manuel, who probably won the No. 2 quarterback job behind Carr with an 8-for-12, 77-yard, no-interception outing.

Oakland took a 13-10 lead on two Giorgio Tavecchio field goals in the second half – of  34 and 28 yards – before Lawler’s winning TD play closed out the exhibition season.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Bolden, Beathard Make Big Plays in 49ers Victory]]>Thu, 31 Aug 2017 21:08:11 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/177*120/seejayfinalsummer.jpg

Welcome to the 49ers roster, Victor Bolden Jr.

After yet another scintillating performance, it’s going to be a crime if the former Oregon State wide receiver and return specialist isn’t on San Francisco’s opening-game roster.

In the 49ers’ fourth and final exhibition game Thursday night vs. the visiting Los Angeles Chargers, Bolden again flashed his speed and ability to elude defenders, returning a punt 92 yards for a touchdown. He also caught a pass for 9 yards.

The game – a 23-13 San Francisco victory -- was the last chance for those on the roster bubble to make a statement, and Bolden certainly made another loud one. In fact, the 5-foot-8, 178-pounder has been making his case throughout training camp and the exhibition season. He had a 104-yard kickoff return for a TD in an earlier game and was averaging 34.4 yards on eight kickoff returns going into Thursday night’s summer finale.

The 49ers, who’ve been looking for an electric playmaker in the return game, now appear to have found one in the undrafted free agent who excelled in that role at Oregon State, returning three kickoffs and one punt for touchdowns in his college career.

Tweeted Cam Inman, who covers the 49ers for the Bay Area News Group, after Bolden’s touchdown Thursday night: “… Bolden with a 92-yard punt return (second special teams TD this exhibition season). #MakingTheCut”.

Another young 49er also had an electric run, rookie quarterback C.J. Beathard, Thursday night’s starter. He picked up 80 yards on three carries, including one for 62 yards and a score.

Bolden will find out officially if he made the team by Saturday, when all NFL teams have to be down to their 53-man roster. Of course, the 49ers could make some additional moves beyond Saturday to pick up players discarded by other teams in time for the regular-season opener Sept. 10 against the Carolina Panthers.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Angels Rally, Muscle Up to Complete Sweep of A's]]>Wed, 30 Aug 2017 22:00:24 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/athletics-postgame.jpg


A grand slam in the seventh put the Angels ahead for good in what turned out to be a slugfest win over the A's.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[ Giants Shut Out by Padres, Drop Series]]>Wed, 30 Aug 2017 21:57:52 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/blach-homer-padres-ap.jpg


SAN DIEGO — With Buster Posey still sidelined, a lineup full of struggling hitters, and a lefty on the mound for the Padres, Bruce Bochy seriously mixed it up Wednesday. Gorkys Hernandez, who doesn’t have a homer, hit third for the first time in his big league career. Pablo Sandoval played first for the first time since injuring himself while doing the splits at the base in 2012.

It was an odd-looking lineup. It also didn’t work.

Travis Wood, San Diego's starting pitcher, hit a solo shot in the third and that was all the Padres needed. They kept tacking on, winning 5-0 and taking the series.

The Giants dropped five of six on the trip and scored just 10 runs. You've made it this far, so here are five more things to know ...

--- Wood was tough on the Giants as a Cubs reliever, but they wore him down Wednesday. Wood was pulled with one out in the fifth, having thrown 97 pitches. Kelby Tomlinson did most of the damage. Hitting second, Tomlinson saw 24 pitches while drawing two walks and picking up a single off Wood. The Giants couldn't take advantage, leaving the bases loaded in the fifth.

--- Craig Stammen replaced Wood and blooped a single off Joe Panik’s glove in right field, giving the night’s pitchers a fourth hit. Ty Blach had a pair. Giants pitchers have three multi-hit games this season. Blach, who singled and doubled in his first two at-bats, has done it twice. Madison Bumgarner did it on opening day, of course.

--- Blach was charged with three earned in 5 2/3 innings. After a run of five consecutive starts of at least seven innings, he has thrown 22 total innings over his past four starts, allowing 19 earned runs. With Johnny Cueto set to return, perhaps he’s the pitcher headed for the bullpen.

--- Kyle Crick has been pitching well, but he had a rough one, with his occasional lack of command showing. Crick entered with a runner on second and two outs in the sixth. After a walk, two singles and a wild pitch, the Padres had tacked on two additional runs.

--- They did not serve chicken wings in the press box.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[LPGA Tourney's Move Leaves Void in Daly City]]>Wed, 30 Aug 2017 19:43:58 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/LPGA_Tourneys_Move_Leaves_Void_in_Daly_City.jpg

Professional women's golf seems to come and go every few years in the Bay Area. Despite a successful three-year run at Daly City's Lake Merced Golf Club, the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic moved back to Taiwan this year. Colin Resch shows how the move has left a void looking to be filled.]]>
<![CDATA[Five Takeaways From Giants' 6-3 Loss to Padres]]>Tue, 29 Aug 2017 21:38:07 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/giants-instant-analysis.jpg


SAN DIEGO - This season has been a slow march to the finish line, but the end result came quickly Tuesday. 

Matt Moore gave up two homers in the fourth, wiping out a modest early lead and digging a hole for a team that's not built for comebacks. The Giants lost 6-3, falling to 5-10 against the Padres this season. 

As September approaches, the Giants are six games back of fourth place. Yikes. Anyway, here are five things to know from Tuesday's game … 

-- Moore's run of good starts came to a swift end in the fourth inning. Jabari Blash led off with a deep homer to left and Manuel Margo hit a three-run shot four batters later. Moore was pulled for a pinch-hitter in the sixth. He gave up at least five earned runs for the eighth time in 27 starts. 

-- The Giants should have turned this into much more of a back-and-forth. They left three runners on in the first, with Jarrett Parker's double play mixed in. They had three hits and a walk in the second and the Padres made two errors, so that probably should have been a much bigger inning, too. 

-- Joe Panik made a diving stop in the first to rob Carlos Asuaje and later hit a solo homer, his second in two nights. He's shown no effects of that concussion, which is good news given the way they have lingered for others. 

-- Jose Pirela robbed Pablo Sandoval of his second homer since he came back to the Giants. The ball appeared to be headed inches over the fence at the 336-foot mark right near the left field line. 

-- The press box dinner included chicken strips AND wings. I might spend the night in the press box. Check back tomorrow! 

Photo Credit: Alex Pavlovic]]>
<![CDATA[A's Bats Go Silent in Loss to Angels]]>Mon, 28 Aug 2017 21:56:37 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/athletics-postgame.jpg


ANAHEIM - The A's offered up a sampler platter Monday of the traits that have marked their 2017 season, not that fans particularly cared for a reminder.

Their 3-1 defeat to the Los Angeles Angels included 14 strikeouts and an 0-for-8 showing with men in scoring position. They committed a seventh-inning error that resulted in an insurance run for the home team. And, when Daniel Gossett threw a wayward first-inning pitch that got by catcher Dustin Garneau, it accounted for the A's 73rd wild pitch of the season, setting a new franchise record.

It was that kind of a night as Oakland dropped the opener of a six-game road trip that takes the team through Anaheim and Seattle to play two clubs battling for a Wild Card spot.

The A's have amassed 1,216 strikeouts this year, making this just the third time in franchise history that they've surpassed 1,200 in a single season.

Angels lefty Andrew Heaney (1-0) proved a very tough customer in his third start back from Tommy John surgery, limiting the A's to two hits and striking out 10 over six innings.

Here's five things you should know as the A's began a six-game road trip that also takes them to Seattle:

SOLID NIGHT FOR GOSSETT: It was a ragged first couple innings for rookie starter Daniel Gossett, but the right-hander settled in and delivered a strong outing, holding the Angels to three runs (two earned) over 6 2/3 innings. He struck out six and walked one. In the first, Gossett struck out Albert Pujols and was trying to strand a runner at third when he hung a 1-2 curve ball that Kole Calhoun spanked for an RBI single. The Angels broke a 1-1 tie in the fourth on Kaleb Cowart's two-out run-scoring double to left. Gossett's night ended in the seventh when Ben Revere doubled and Martin Maldonado scored from first after Matt Joyce short-hopped a throw to second and Marcus Semien couldn't dig it out.

DIFFERENCE ON DEFENSE: The Angels made the plays in the field when they had to, including a running catch from Ben Revere in left to rob Chad PInder and save a run. In contrast, Khris Davis just missed a running catch in left on Cowart's drive that went for an RBI double.

GARNEAU'S MOMENT: : A's catcher Dustin Garneau, who is from Orange County, homered in the third for the A's only run and his first homer as an Athletic.

DH DUTY FOR LOWRIE: After suffering a shin contusion that forced him from Sunday's game, Jed Lowrie served as designated hitter against the Angels. He fouled a ball off the outside of his left shin, which was his back leg as the switch hitter batted from the left side. Lowrie said he told manager Bob Melvin he could have played defense Monday, but he wound up with a sort of half-day off as the DH.

STILL AWAITING WORD: Starter Paul Blackburn underwent a CT scan to see whether there actually is a fracture in his right hand. Melvin***** didn't have the results before Monday's game. The right-hander was hit by a liner on his throwing hand Tuesday at Baltimore and went on the 10-day disabled list, retroactive to Aug. 23.

Photo Credit: Joe Stiglich]]>
<![CDATA[Giants' Samardzija Dominates Padres With Shutout]]>Mon, 28 Aug 2017 22:59:42 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/179*120/giants-0828.jpg

SAN DIEGO — The Giants scored just four runs over three games at Chase Field. Jeff Samardzija made sure a struggling offense wouldn’t need to do much on the first night at Petco Park.

Samardzija needed just 102 pitches to beat the Padres 3-0 and give the Giants their second shutout of the season. He struck out five, walked none, and allowed just three singles.

The Padres did not get a base hit that left the infield until Cory Spangenberg’s single to right with two outs in the eighth. That’s one fact, here are five more …

—- Through 132 games, the Giants had just two complete games: Madison Bumgarner’s eight-inning complete-game loss here in April, and Ty Blach’s shutout of the Phillies. Samardzija’s pitch count was under control the entire night. He needed just 72 pitches to get through six, and 10 more for a dominant seventh. Mark Melancon warmed up in the eighth but Samardzija got through it at 93 pitches and Melancon sat back down.

—- Crawford has been the Giants’ hottest hitter for a couple weeks now. He hit a 411-foot shot to right-center in the fourth, getting the Giants on the board. The homer was the 12th for Crawford, who lost his 10-game hitting streak during a pinch-hit appearance Sunday.

—- Joe Panik hit a long shot at Chase Field that was so close to being fair that Bochy asked his replay guys to take a long look at it. He straightened it out Monday, smoking a two-run shot off the right field pole to give Samardzija a 3-0 lead in the eighth. The homer was Panik’s eighth.

—- Hector Sanchez, an Arenado-ish Giant-killer of late, grounded out three times. Perhaps the Giants finally figured him out.

—- Jhoulys Chacin lasted just five innings. It was tied for his shortest start this season at Petco Park, where he has a 1.86 ERA.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Niners Passing Game Looks Promising vs. Vikings]]>Sun, 27 Aug 2017 19:38:54 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/176*120/carlosvikkkngs.jpg

In 2016, the 49ers passing offense was barely airborne.

Plagued by inconsistent quarterback play, a lack of bonafide wide receivers and shaky protection, the Niners ranked dead last in the NFL, throwing for just 2,911 yards, a pitiful 182 yards per game.

On Sunday night, however, the 49ers gave their fans a preview of what may be a much better passing attack.

San Francisco, in a completely new scheme under head coach Kyle Shanahan, threw for 340 yards and three touchdowns in a 32-31 loss to the Vikings in Minnesota. The Vikings pulled out a victory on the game's final play, scoring on a 1-yard plunge for a two-point conversion after 49ers cornerback Keith Reaser was called for pass interference in the end zone.

Fortunately, wins and losses don't matter in the exhibition season. What does matter is how the 49ers offense appears to be growing under Shanahan.

It wasn’t just the yards, but the way the 49ers threw the ball that looked so different from 2016. Starting quarterback Brian Hoyer was 12-of-17 for 176 yards and two scores – with no interceptions – connecting with Marquis Goodwin on a 46-yard TD and with running back Carlos Hyde on a 24-yard score. Rookie QB C.J. Beathard followed with a 7-for-13 night for 159 yards and a TD, with the bulk of the yards coming on an 87-yard pass to Raheem Mostert.

Hoyer looked especially sharp, distributing the football on target all over the field on a variety of throws. He completed his first nine passes before he finally overthrew Jeremy Kerley on a route in the middle of the field. The TD pass to Hyde was zipped through coverage. His scoring toss to Goodwin came when Goodwin was able to work himself wide open in the Minnesota secondary.

The 49ers showed, too, that their receiving corps should be much stronger in 2017. Veteran wideout Pierre Garcon Sunday night had six catches for 64 yards, while rookie Trent Taylor had three for 36, Mostert two for 104 and newcomer Goodwin the one for 46 and the TD. Seven other 49ers caught passes.

The night began with 49ers starting strong safety Eric Reid kneeling for the national anthem, the first San Francisco player to do so this preseason. Reid last year had knelt with quarterback Colin Kaepernick in at attempt to draw attention to what they say is a lack of social justice for the treatment of African-Americans. Several other NFL players this summer have followed Kaepernick’s example by kneeling for the national anthem before games.

The 49ers have one exhibition game remaining, Thursday night vs. the visiting Los Angeles Chargers. San Francisco will open the regular season Sept. 10 against the Carolina Panthers.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Stratton Strikes Out 10, But Giants Blanked by D'backs]]>Sun, 27 Aug 2017 18:51:36 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/stratton-dbacks-ap.jpg


Chris Stratton struck out 10 D'backs on Sunday, but the offense couldn't do anything against Patrick Corbin as the Giants lost 11-0.

Photo Credit: NBC Sports Bay Area staff]]>
<![CDATA[Mavericks Surf Contest May Resurface With Possible Sale]]>Thu, 24 Aug 2017 10:16:12 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/surfing+.jpg

The Mavericks Big Wave Surf Contest may be getting new life.

Cartel Management, the bankrupt organizer of Mavericks has filed a motion to sell the contest to the World Surf League, NBC Bay Area learned late Wednesday night.

Sources say the deal would be worth about half a million dollars and would need the approval of the courts.

If the deal goes through, it could pave the way for more women competitors, as the WSL is now headed by Sophie Goldschmidt.

Photo Credit: AP file]]>
<![CDATA[Marleau Shows Off Maple Leafs Colors at Sharks' Practice]]>Wed, 23 Aug 2017 17:53:51 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/patty-us.jpg

There was a dash of blue among the teal and white sweaters at the Sharks captain's ice session on Wednesday.

Patrick Marleau, who signed a three-year, $18.75 million deal with Toronto in the offseason, was among the dozen or so skaters that were on the ice at the Sharks' practice facility with training camp a little more than three weeks away. The 37-year-old was dressed head to toe in his bright blue Maple Leafs attire, likely a shocking sight for longtime Sharks fans that saw in a San Jose sweater for the first 19 seasons of his career.

It's not uncommon for the Sharks, or other teams, to allow players from other teams to utilize their local practice facilities before training camp begins.

Among Sharks skaters also taking part in the skate were Joe Thornton, Joe Pavelski, Joonas Donskoi, Aaron Dell, Ryan Carpenter and Kevin Labanc. 

Thornton, who is recovering from offseason knee surgery on his ACL and MCL, looked to be moving well. He signed a one-year, $8 million contract extension with the Sharks in the offseason.

The Sharks will hold their first on-ice training camp session on Friday, Sep. 15.

Marleau makes his first appearance as a visiting player at SAP Center on Oct. 30.

Photo Credit: Kevin Kurz]]>
<![CDATA[A's Rally, But Lose to Orioles on Walkoff in Extra Innings]]>Wed, 23 Aug 2017 17:54:20 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/as-recap-ap.jpg


BALTIMORE -- Zach Britton's AL-record run of converting 60 straight save attempts ended amid the evening shadows of Camden Yards, when the Orioles closer blew a two-run lead and failed to get out of the ninth inning in a game Baltimore ultimately won in the 12th, 8-7 over the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday.

Baltimore led 7-5 heading into the ninth when Britton entered to seal the victory, just as he had been doing successfully since the final days of the 2015 season. On this occasion, however, the left-hander gave up three straight hits before a sacrifice fly by Matt Joyce tied it.

Following a walk to Khris Davis, Britton was replaced by Miguel Castro (3-1), who quelled the uprising.

Manny Machado led off the 12th with a home run off Simon Castro (1-2) to end a game that lasted 4 hours, 20 minutes.

Britton's streak began on Oct. 1, 2015, extended through all of last season and went for 11 more saves this year. He had not blown a save since Sept. 20, 2015, at Tampa Bay.

Britton finished well short of Eric Gagne's major league mark of 84, set from 2002-04.

The Orioles let a five-run lead shrink to 6-5 in the eighth before Chris Davis hit his 20th home run to provide a bit of breathing room for Britton.

It wasn't enough.

Machado's 28th homer enabled Baltimore to win two of three from the Athletics and remain relevant in the wild-card chase. Since sweeping Kansas City on July 31-Aug. 2, Baltimore had lost three series and split two.

Trey Mancini and Welington Castillo also homered from the Orioles.

Castillo delivered a two-run drive in the sixth to make it 6-1, but the A's chased starter Dylan Bundy in a two-run seventh and further cut the gap when Joyce hit a two-run shot off Mychal Givens.

Recalled from Triple-A Nashville before the game, Oakland starter Daniel Gossett gave up five runs and eight hits in five-plus innings.


Athletics: RHP Michael Brady was optioned to Triple-A Nashville to make room for Gossett.

Orioles: Activated Castro from the bereavement list and optioned RHP Alec Asher to Triple-A Norfolk.


Oakland bumped RHP Chris Smith (0-3, 5.56 ERA) from the starting rotation to make room for Gossett. Smith allowed four runs in 4 1/3 innings Monday against Baltimore and will be available out of the bullpen Friday.


Athletics: Manager Bob Melvin has not yet decided whether RHP Paul Blackburn will make his next start after he was hit with a line drive on the right wrist Tuesday. . SS Marcus Semien, who missed two games with irritated scar tissue from his April wrist surgery, returned to the lineup Wednesday.

Orioles: RHP Hunter Harvey, Baltimore's No. 1 pick (22nd overall) in 2013, continued his climb back from Tommy John surgery on Tuesday with first appearance at Single-A Delmarva this season. Harvey pitched three hitless innings against Hickory.


Athletics: After a day off Thursday, RHP Kendall Graveman (3-4, 4.54 ERA) draws the start at home in the opener of a three-game series against Texas. Graveman is 2-2 with 5.20 ERA in six career starts against the Rangers.

Orioles: Baltimore also has Thursday off. It begins a three-game set at Boston on Friday, with RHP Jeremy Hellickson (1-2, 6.35 in four starts with the Orioles) on the mound.

Photo Credit: Associated Press]]>
<![CDATA[Parker's Excuse-Me Double Lifts Giants Over Brewers]]>Wed, 23 Aug 2017 17:54:54 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/span-scores-brewers-ap.jpg


SAN FRANCISCO - With the go-ahead run on second in the bottom of the seventh, Kelby Tomlinson was rung up on a pitch that was about half a foot from the bottom of the zone. Bruce Bochy threw his hands up in anger. Several others in the dugout hollered at home plate umpire Fieldin Culbreth. 

Seconds later, the dugout was full of sheepish grins. 

Jarrett Parker's check-swing resulted in an accidental double down the left field line. Two runs scored and the Giants held on for a 4-2 victory that gave them the series win over the Brewers. 

Here are five things to know from the final game of the homestand … 

-- Matt Moore's solid day ended when he walked the leadoff batter in the seventh. His line: 6 innings, 5 hits, 1 earned run, 2 walks, 6 strikeouts. He has allowed five total runs over his past three starts. 

-- Moore caught a break in the sixth after the first two batters singled. Jonathan Villar had third base stolen by a mile, but Ryan Braun swung on the pitch and flied out to the track in center. Villar had to retreat and he couldn't tag up. Two grounders to short got Moore out of the inning. 

-- Josh Hader, a 23-year-old reliever who looks and pitches like Bizarro Tim Lincecum, dominated the Giants the last two days. The left-hander has a 1.23 ERA in 21 big league appearances. The Giants should get one of those. 

-- Accident or not, Parker's double counts. It was his ninth since he was called up on August 3. He has 14 RBI this month. 

-- Mark Melancon pitched a perfect eighth, striking out two. He hasn't allowed a run in six appearances since coming off the disabled list.

Photo Credit: Alex Pavlovic]]>
<![CDATA[New A's Ballpark Likely Won't Be as Pitcher-Friendly]]>Wed, 23 Aug 2017 17:56:33 -0800https://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/oakland-coliseum-lowangle-usatsi.jpg

With all the speculation about where the A's will build their new ballpark, much less attention has been given to the potential characteristics of the playing field itself.

It appears all of that vast foul territory that is a hallmark of the Coliseum - and such a safety net for pitchers - will be left in the past.

A's executive VP of baseball operations Billy Beane said he anticipates the foul ground to be reduced considerably once the A's start designing the playing surface in a potential new ballpark.

"I think most people would say that you're trying to create intimacy, so minimizing foul territory is probably the direction most teams and stadiums have gone and are gonna continue to go," Beane told NBC Sports California. "You want to create an experience for fans that's as close to the field (as possible).

"Some of that is stuff, it's utilitarian - what's the advantage baseball-wise for us? (But) what we would consider as baseball guys, (team president) Dave (Kaval) will be looking at from the fan standpoint."

Before any of this becomes a factor, the A's first need to announce their location in Oakland to build. Kaval says that will happen before this calendar year ends. The three locations being considered: one right across the street from the Laney College baseball field, just off Interstate 880; the Howard Terminal site that's a short walk from Jack London Square; and the current Coliseum site.

Beane said in-depth conversations about the playing field itself have yet to take place, such as the outfield dimensions, location of the bullpens, etc. But he talks as if a much smaller foul territory is a given, and that would mark a significant change for the A's when they play at home.

Seats at the Coliseum are located so far back from the field, and that spacious foul ground makes the venue arguably the most pitcher-friendly ballpark in the majors. Pitchers who join the A's often comment on the foul territory being a huge positive in their decision to sign with Oakland.

Of course, there's a flip side. Free agent hitters who get frustrated that so many Coliseum at-bats result in foul pop-outs might view the A's more favorably if they provide a more hitter-friendly home ballpark.

Beane said he believes he and his baseball operations staff will definitely get their say in what characteristics they want the new field to have. But creating a cozier atmosphere, with fans sitting closer to the action, is a key element for the A's wherever they build.

"To take fans farther away from the game in this day and age would probably be crazy," Beane said. "… I think we're all gonna be on the same page. When you get a new stadium, the reason you build it is to get people to come watch games. You have to keep in mind that the fan experience is probably the first thing."

Photo Credit: Joe Stiglich]]>