Elias Says: Nov. 29, 2016

Packers offense helps Green Bay snap skid

• The Packers snapped a four-game losing streak with a 27-13 victory in Philadelphia on Monday night. Green Bay owned a 10-minute advantage in possession time thanks in part to the team’s success rate on third down. The Packers converted 71.4 percent of their third-down opportunities (10 of 14), marking the best percentage by a team in a game this season. The only other team to top 70 percent in a game this year was the Bills in a Week 9 loss to the Seahawks (Buffalo converted 70.6 percent of its third downs in Seattle). For the Packers, it was the team’s second-best third-down efficiency in a game over the last 10 seasons. Green Bay converted 72.2 percent of its third-down attempts in a road victory over the Vikings in 2013.

Rodgers on target

Aaron Rodgers completed 30 of 39 passes in the Packers’ Monday Night Football victory, including a pair of touchdowns to Davante Adams. Monday’s game marked the 15th game in Rodgers’ career, and the first this season, in which he attempted at least 30 passes and completed 75 percent or more (Green Bay is 14–1 in those contests). Only four quarterbacks have more games of that kind than Rodgers: Drew Brees (40), Peyton Manning (26), Brett Favre (17), and Matt Ryan (16).

Big game for Adams

• Davante Adams pulled in five catches for 113 yards, including a pair of touchdown receptions in the first half. That’s the second time this season that Adams had multiple touchdown catches in a game while compiling at least 100 receiving yards - he had 132 yards and two TD’s versus the Bears in October. The only other player to total at least 100 receiving yards and two or more touchdown receptions in multiple games this season is the Buccaneers’ Mike Evans, who has also done so twice.

Westbrook officially on pace to match Robertson’s greatest season

• Another day, another triple-double for Russell Westbrook. The Thunder point guard compiled his eighth triple-double of the season to help Oklahoma City defeat the Knicks at Madison Square Garden. Speaking of triple-doubles, Westbrook is now averaging a triple-double for the entire 2016–17 season (30.9 points, 10.3 rebounds, 11.3 assists in 19 games). It’s well known that Oscar Robertson is the only player in NBA history to average a triple-double for a full season, having done so in 1961–62 with the Cincinnati Royals. But no player other than “The Big O” maintained double-digit averages in points, rebounds, and assists through even 10 games of a season until Westbrook this year.

Westbrook now has two triple-doubles at Madison Square Garden; his first at MSG was on Christmas Day in 2013. No Knicks player in the last 25 seasons has posted multiple triple-doubles at Madison Square Garden. The most recent player to do so in a Knicks uniform was Mark Jackson, who had five triple-doubles at MSG for New York from 1988 to 1991.

Big 3 strike again for Warriors

• Each member of the Warriors’ “Big 3” reached the 20-point plateau in Golden State’s victory over the Hawks. Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry tied for the team-lead with 25 points, while Klay Thompson contributed 20 points. That’s the eighth time this season that those three players scored at least 20 points in the same game. It’s been 36 years since the last time a trio compiled at least eight games of that kind in a season before the end of November. David Thompson, Alex English, and Dan Issel each scored at least 20 points for the Nuggets in 27 games of the 1980-81 season, including four games in October 1980 and four more the following month.

Cousins fills boxscore for Kings

• Despite a huge effort by DeMarcus Cousins on Monday night, the Kings lost in overtime to the Wizards at Verizon Center. Cousins led the Kings with 36 points, which was his fourth consecutive game with at least 30 points. Cousins is the third Kings player in the last 40 seasons to compile 30 or more points in four consecutive games, joining Mitch Richmond (Feb. 1997) and Chris Webber (Jan. 2001). Cousins also led the Kings on Monday with 20 rebounds and four assists, marking the 20th time in his career that he led Sacramento (or tied for the team-lead) in points, rebounds, and assists. The Kings are 6–14 (.300) in those contests.

Gobert reaches double-digits in double-doubles

Rudy Gobert scored 16 points and corralled a game-high 17 rebounds to help the Jazz defeat the Timberwolves in Minneapolis. Gobert now has 10 double-doubles on the young season, making him the first Jazz player since Deron Williams in 2010–11 to compile at least 10 double-doubles by the end of November. Gobert’s October/November total of 197 rebounds is tied with Mark Eaton (1984–85) for the second-most by a Jazz player since the franchise relocated to Salt Lake City in 1979. Carlos Boozer had the highest total for Utah over that span, having grabbed 211 rebounds through the end of November in the 2006–07 campaign.

Dragic huge for Heat

• After missing two games with an elbow injury, Gorin Dragic returned to the Heat’s lineup in a big way on Monday against the Celtics. Dragic led all players from both teams with 27 points and 17 assists, both season-highs for the Heat point guard. Dragic distributed twice as many assists as any other player in the game (Isaiah Thomas posted the next-most assists with eight). Only one other Heat player in the last five seasons finished a game as the outright leader in scoring and with at least twice as many assists as any other player. Dwyane Wade did so on March 11, 2015, compiling 28 points and nine assists in Miami’s victory versus the Nets.

Lowry’s perfect night helps Raptors triumph

Kyle Lowry scorched the nets from behind the arc in the Raptors’ blowout victory over the 76ers. Lowry connected on seven of his nine field-goal attempts, including a perfect 6-for-6 from three-point range. Lowry is the first Raptors player to attempt at least six three-pointers in a game and connect on all of them. Two other players have had games of that kind since the start of last season. Matt Barnes (Jan. 14) and CJ McCollum (April 2) did that in the 2015–16 campaign; both players also shot 6-for-6 from three.

Lamb chops Grizzlies down to size

Jeremy Lamb scored a season-high 21 points off the bench to spur the Hornets to victory over the Grizzlies. Lamb tied Kemba Walker for the team-lead in points and led Charlotte outright with nine rebounds. Monday’s game marked the third time since joining the Hornets last season that Lamb led Charlotte in both points and rebounds in a game while coming off the bench. The only other player with as many as three games of that kind for the Hornets is Tyrus Thomas, who did so three times for Charlotte in 2010.

Hickey nets another clutch goal

• Defenseman Thomas Hickey tipped a shot past Calgary goaltender Brian Elliott at the 1:53 mark in overtime to earn the Islanders a 2–1 victory over the Flames in Brooklyn. Hickey has scored only 15 goals in his five seasons in the NHL (all with the Islanders) but four of them have come in overtime. No other active player with four or more regular-season overtime goals on his NHL résumé has scored as few goals overall as Hickey. The only other active NHL players with as many as four OT goals but fewer than 40 total goals scored are Hickey’s fellow defensemen Shayne Gostisbehere (21 total, 4 OT) and John Klingberg (23 total, 4 OT).

Hickey is now the sole career leader for the Islanders in regular-season overtime goals by a defenseman. The only forwards who’ve scored more regular-season OT goals for the Islanders than he has are John Tavares (8) and Kyle Okposo (6).

Perron keeps streaking for St. Louis

David Perron extended his point streak to a career-high eight games when he scored a third-period goal for the St. Louis Blues in their overtime win against the Stars on Monday. Perron’s point streak is the longest current point skein in the NHL and the longest by a Blues player this season. The only players who had eight-game point streaks for St. Louis last season were Vladimir Tarasenko (twice) and Kevin Shattenkirk. Two NHL players have produced longer point streaks this season than Perron: the Blackhawks’ Artem Anisimov (11 games, Oct. 5–Nov. 6) and the Flyers’ Claude Giroux (10 games, Oct. 15–Nov. 2).