Elias Says: October 26, 2017

World Series homer fest really gets started after nine innings

Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa hit consecutive home runs off Josh Fields to start the 10th inning of Game 2 of the World Series. Only one other team had ever hit back-to-back home runs in extra innings of a postseason game. The Mariners’ Edgar Martinez and John Olerud each connected against Keith Foulke at Chicago in the 10th inning of their win over the White Sox in Game 1 of the 2000 American League Division Series.

Yasiel Puig led off the bottom of the 10th inning with a home run for the Dodgers. It was the first time in postseason history that three home runs were hit in a single extra inning. There had never been more than one homer in any previous extra inning during the World Series.

George Springer’s 11th-inning home run gave the Astros the lead for good in their 7–6 win. Houston is the first team ever to hit three home runs after the ninth inning of a postseason game.

The final home run of the night was hit by the Dodgers’ Charlie Culberson in the bottom of the 11th inning. In case you lost count, five of the eight homers hit in Game 2 came in extra innings. Not only was that a postseason record, but none of the over 200,000 regular-season games in major-league history have seen more than four home runs hit after the ninth inning.

Here comes the tying run

Enrique Hernandez’s two-out single in the bottom of the 10th inning drove in Logan Forsythe with the tying run for the Dodgers. Hernandez’s hit was the fourth of the game for Los Angeles, with the first three being home runs by Joc Pederson, Corey Seager, and Yasiel Puig. It was the latest in a postseason game that any team had produced its first non-homer hit. Previously, the latest such instance took place in Game 4 of the 1947 World Series, when the Dodgers’ Cookie Lavagetto broke up Yankees pitcher Bill Bevens’ bid for a no-hitter with a two-run walkoff double with two outs in the ninth inning.

Drummond grabs 5000th rebound

Andre Drummond grabbed a game-high 15 rebounds to go along with his 15 points in the Pistons’ 122–101 home win over the Timberwolves. Drummond, who celebrated his 24th birthday in August, finished Wednesday with 5011 career rebounds. Drummond is the second-youngest player to cross the 5000-rebound plateau, behind Dwight Howard, who was 23 in 2009. Third place on the list belongs to Wilt Chamberlain, who was 25 when he gathered his 5000th rebound (in his 186th game!) in 1961.

Simmons continues historic start to NBA career

Ben Simmons scored 14 points and added seven rebounds and nine assists in the 76ers’ 105–104 home loss to the Rockets. In five games this season, the rookie has racked up 82 points, 50 rebounds, and 37 assists. The only other NBA players ever to have at least 80 points, 50 rebounds, and 30 assists over their first five NBA contests were Oscar Robertson (129 pts, 58 reb, 52 ast in 1960) and Connie Hawkins (105/60/34 in 1969.)

Howard shows off his rebounding skills

Dwight Howard brought down 19 rebounds in the Hornets’ 110–93 home win over the Nuggets. In four games this season, Howard, who was acquired in June, has collected 71 rebounds. That’s not only the highest total by any Charlotte player over his first four career games with the team or his first four games of a season. It matches the most rebounds by a player in franchise history over any four-game span. Emeka Okafor pulled in 71 rebounds over four games in February 2007.

An unlikely win by the Nets

Spencer Dinwiddie scored a career-high 22 points and the Nets, despite being out-shot from the floor 48.1% to 43.0% and outrebounded 47–38, shocked the visiting Cavaliers, 112–107. Teams coming off 60-loss seasons (Brooklyn was 20–62 in 2016–17) had lost 55 of the previous 56 games in which they were out-shot and out-rebounded by a team that appeared in the previous NBA Finals. The only other team to win such a game over that span was also the Nets, over the Celtics in March 2011.

An OKC-era first for Thunder

Russell Westbrook’s 28 points, 10 rebounds, and 16 assists will get most of the headlines, but Oklahoma City also got notable contributions from fellow starters Carmelo Anthony (28 pts, 10 reb) and Steven Adams (17 pts, 11 reb) in its 114–96 home win over Indiana. The last time the Thunder franchise had three starting players contribute at least 15 points and 10 rebounds in a game, the team was playing its final game as the Seattle SuperSonics. Rookie Kevin Durant led the way with 42 points and 13 rebounds, while Jeff Green (27 pts, 10 reb) and Nick Collison (16 pts, 13 reb) also had big games in a 126–121 win at Golden State on April 16, 2008.

Warriors spread it around

Draymond Green led all players with six assists, and teammates Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson, Stephen Curry, and Andre Iguodala chipped in with five in the Warriors’ 117–112 home win over the Raptors. It was only the second time in the last 40 years that five Golden State players handed out at least five assists in a game. The other was on Dec. 12, 1995, in a home win over Miami. Tim Hardaway had 10, and Jon Barry, Chris Mullin, Latrell Sprewell, and B.J. Armstrong each had five.

Another fast start for San Antonio

LaMarcus Aldridge led all players with 31 points and the Spurs improved to 4–0 for the second straight season with a 117–100 win at Miami. Two other teams in the last 20 years have won their first four games in two consecutive seasons: New Orleans in 2006–07 and 2007–08 and Golden State in 2014–15 and 2015–16.

Capela dominates down low

Clint Capela collected a career-high 20 rebounds and made seven of nine shots from the floor in the Rockets’ 105–104 win at Philadelphia. Since Hakeem Olajuwon played his last game for the team in 1999, the only other Houston player to gather 20+ rebounds and shoot at least 75% from the floor in a game is Dwight Howard (20 reb, 8-for-10) against the Clippers in November 2015.

Smith scores 45 points over first three games

Dennis Smith scored a team-high 19 points, bringing his career total to 45 in three games, as the Mavericks won their first game of the season, 103–94 over the Grizzlies. The only other players to score as many points for Dallas over their first three NBA games were Mark Aguirre (60 in 1981) and Jamal Mashburn (53 in 1993.)

Defenseman Pietrangelo is off to a fast start

Alex Pietrangelo’s power play goal in the second period was the game-winning goal in the Blues’ 5–2 victory over the Flames. Pietrangelo leads all NHL defenseman with 12 points this season, having tallied four goals and eight assists in the Blues’ ten games. Pietrangelo is the first NHL defenseman to produce at least a dozen points in his team’s first ten games of a season since Winnipeg’s Toby Enstrom racked up 13 points in 2012–13. It’s been 20 years since the last time a St. Louis defenseman tallied 12 points or more in the team’s first ten games. Steve Duchense (13) and Al MacInnis (12) both did so in 1997–98.

Many contribute to offensive effort by Columbus

Thirteen different players recorded a point for the Blue Jackets in their 5–1 win over the Sabres, though only defenseman Seth Jones (one goal, one assist) had more than one point. The only team to have more than 13 players register points in an NHL game this season is the Blackhawks, who had 15 in their 10–1 rout of the Penguins on October 5.