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Best moments from Phil Mickelson and Charles Barkley's win at The Match – Golf Channel

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Score one for the underdogs!

Phil Mickelson and Charles Barkley entered the latest iteration of The Match, The Match III, as betting underdogs to favorites Stephen Curry and Peyton Manning. However, Mickelson and the 25-handicap Barkley got the job done in convincing fashion, winning 4 and 3 on Friday at Stone Canyon Club in Oro Valley, Arizona.

“Two people thought this was going to happen: you and me,” Mickelson told Barkley as they walked off the 15th green.

After dropping the first hole, Mickelson and Barkley won four straight holes to take command. As Curry struggled with his game and Manning couldn’t do much to pick up the slack, the two went 4 down after 10 holes. In total, they won just three holes.

While there were still plenty of Classic Chuck shots to make things entertaining, Mickelson performed well as a player, coach and caddie to headline a strong team performance.

Oh, and the banter wasn’t “turrible,” either.

Here are some of the most memorable moments from the day:


To: Chuck, From: Tiger

Barkley’s golf ability and knack for self deprecation make him an easy target, so it’s no surprise that Tiger Woods’ needle found him.

Woods sent some gifts Barkley’s way before the match, including a reflective vest and airhorn.

The joke, though, was mostly on Tiger. Barkley didn’t need any of his presents early. He hit a nice baby draw off the first tee and didn’t miss a fairway until the fifth hole. And while Barkley did hit some foul balls later, the match was well in hand by then.


Early over-club

Mickelson put on his caddie hat right away after bombing a drive into the left rough at the opening hole. As Barkley sized up a wedge shot, Mickelson shot the flag with his rangefinder.

“70 yards,” Mickelson said.

Barkley clipped it a little thin, sending the ball well over the flag and rolling it onto the back fringe, some 80 feet away from the flag.

Mickelson then conceded that he over-clubbed Barkley on purpose.

“It was actually 55,” he said to Barkley. “I didn’t want to tell you that because I wanted you to be aggressive. … I’ve underestimated your ability.”


Pray for the zebras?

Steph Curry was easily the best dressed player on the course, and Phil Mickelson agreed: “I think he looks amazing.”

But Andre Iguodala, one of Curry’s former Warriors teammates who was part of the broadcast team, disagreed.

“How many zebras had to die for you to look fly?” Iguodala quipped.

Ouch.


Barkley’s Gary Player story

Speaking of outfits, Barkley’s all-black attire prompted a tweet from Gary Player.

“Glad to see that Chuck has channeled his inner Black Knight with his all black attire today,” Player said. “Let’s go Chuck & Phil.”

Barkley then mentioned that he and Player teed it up recently.

“One of the highlights of my life was getting to meet Gary Player about six weeks ago,” Barkley said. “I always wanted to meet him, we played a great round of golf and it was an honor and a privilege.”

Unsurprisingly, Player made some comments about Barkley’s weight during their round together.

“I’ll tell you what, he made me feel bad about being fat, though,” Barkley said. “He told me I need to get in the gym.”


Barkley’s hecklers

Tiger and Gary weren’t the only ones making fun at Barkley’s expense. Barkley’s “NBA on TNT” colleagues – Ernie Johnson, Kenny Smith and Shaquille O’Neal – joined the telecast from their homes.

“I’ve got $100,000 on Steph Curry,” O’Neal said to Barkley, who chunked his tee ball at the sixth hole amid the trash talk.

Finally, Mickelson had enough.

“I’m tired of your colleagues disrespecting you,” he said before handing a dozen Callaway golf balls with Shaq’s face logoed on them to Barkley. 

Barkley’s next shot from the drop zone missed the green, as well.

“200,000 on Steph Curry,” O’Neal added.

“Where’s the hitch?” Kenny Smith asked Barkley as he walked toward the green.

O’Neal then had the best zinger of them all as Barkley lined up a birdie putt off of Mickelson’s tee shot.

“Chuck, if you can’t read words how you gonna read greens?” O’Neal asked.

Mickelson’s advice – “Quiet your mind, my friend” – paid off, though, as Barkley nestled one close to clinch the halve after Manning lipped out a short birdie try.


‘Strong, cocky move’

With Barkley facing a long birdie putt from the fringe at the fifth hole, Curry had a chance to chip he and Manning’s fourth shot close and put some pressure on.

However, he duffed it.

With the ball still in the rough, Mickelson decided to conceded the bogey to his opponents.

“That’s a strong, cocky move right there,” he said to Barkley, who ended up lagging one 4 feet past and setting up a Mickelson par make for the hole.


‘I bought it’

Who said the Super Bowl had the best commercials?


Chuckopotamus

Here’s the ball flight we’re used to out of Chuck. Warning: It’s not for the shank of heart.


‘Sorry’

After Barkley declared the match basically over with he and Mickelson leading 3 up at the turn, the pair went 4 up after 10 holes. But Curry and Manning managed to get one back at the par-4 11th hole as Mickelson and Barkley spent some quality time in the desert.

Nice out by Mickelson, even if Barkley would later miss a putt for double bogey.

As for Barkley’s club toss? In Chuck’s words: Turrible!


Great – but meaningless – shot!

Not much went right for Curry and Manning on Friday.

Even this beauty of a bunker shot by Steph, at No. 12,  resulted in a lost hole.

Great shot, but Curry still might not want to check his Twitter for a while. Better to let the plus-1 handicap skepticism die down first.


Block or charge?

Well…?


And the winning putt…

Mickelson sealed the deal with this birdie make, but man, wouldn’t it have been great if Barkley had drained the game-winner instead?

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Canucks’ quiet leader Sutter makes presence known in steadying performance – Sportsnet.ca

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VANCOUVER — When coach Travis Green said the Vancouver Canucks needed their top players to be better, he probably wasn’t thinking of Brandon Sutter. But he could have been.

During the Canucks’ alarming start to the National Hockey League season, when attention has understandably been focussed on Elias Pettersson’s inability to score, J.T. Miller’s problems at even strength and the overall chaos on defence caused by turnovers, Sutter and a couple of other players near the bottom of the lineup have quietly been among the team’s best.

Monday, he wasn’t so quiet.

At the start of a very important week for the Canucks, Sutter scored his first NHL hat trick in his 735th game. Fellow grinder Tyler Motte also scored as Vancouver built an early lead and won 7-1 against the Ottawa Senators to ease, for at least a couple of days, some of the tension on the West Coast.

With conjecture percolating about the future of general manager Jim Benning, it felt perfectly scripted that Sutter, one of Benning’s least popular acquisitions, should score a hat trick to steady the team and take some of the heat off the GM.

Sutter is a pro’s pro, a guy who leads by example. But he was oversold to the market when he was acquired by Benning in 2015, and has struggled to stay healthy and score for most of the five years since then.

Teammates, however, love him.

“You never know when you’re going to get one or if you’re going to get one,” Sutter, 30, said after scoring once in each period. “It only took me 13 years. I’m pretty excited. It was a good win for our team… a little bit of confidence for our team going forward.”

It was a game that generated a lot of positive vibes for the Canucks. Rookie defenceman Olli Juoelvi scored his first NHL goal, rookie forward Nils Hoglander impressively set up Tanner Pearson on another, and Thatcher Demko made 34 saves in easily the best performance by a Vancouver goalie so far.

“It was enough is enough for me,” Demko said, relieved to improve on his 0-3 record and .866 save percentage. “First three starts of the year and not getting a win, that’s tough. That’s not the guy I want to be. I want to be a guy that’s going to get wins when the team needs it.

“(It was) the goals that I was giving up at the times I was. That was something that I really wanted to focus on. Just timely saves, making sure that when they do get chances… that I can come up big and kind of give the team a chance to pull away.”

With his team up 2-0, Demko stopped Connor Brown on a breakaway late in the first period. In the second, his point-blank save on Artem Anisimov immediately preceded Sutter’s shorthanded snipe that made it 4-1. Demko made another strong save against Josh Norris at the end of the middle period, allowing his team to comfortably go into the third and pull away.

But he was still happier for Sutter than he was for himself.

“One of the reasons why you play the game is moments like that,” Demko said. “You know he’s been around the league 13 years now, and you’re not sure if you’re going to get one. Everyone’s just really excited for him, giving him some hugs after the game.”

Demko and Braden Holtby have largely had a free pass during the Canucks’ poor start because there were so many other, more serious, problems.

But on Monday, the team was much better in front of him – albeit against a weaker opponent – and Demko provided goaltending you can win with. The Canucks need a lot more if it.

They could use more of the perfect penalty killing they had against the Senators, more of the positional discipline and composure they displayed, too. Hey, if Pettersson and the first line can start dominating at even-strength the way they did last season, everything will be fine.

“Everyone just needs to simplify,” Sutter said. “I know it sounds a little bit cliche. But when you do the right things system-wise and play the right way as a team, that’s when your highly-skilled guys kind of find their game and take over. That’s where they create their offence.”

The Senators are the only team in the Canadian division universally regarded as worse than the Canucks, and this was only one win. The Canucks are still 3-5-0. But players seeking confidence have something to build on. It’s a start.

The Canucks and Senators play again Wednesday and Thursday at Rogers Arena.

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Canucks snap losing skid, rediscover scoring touch in drubbing of Senators – Sportsnet.ca

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VANCOUVER — A hat trick from Brandon Sutter lifted the Vancouver Canucks to a 7-1 win over the Ottawa Senators on Monday.

It was a much-needed victory for Vancouver (3-5-0), which had not won in regulation since its season opener on Jan. 13.

Tanner Pearson had a goal and an assist for the home team, while Tyler Motte, Quinn Hughes and Olli Juolevi also scored. Bo Horvat tallied two assists.

Ottawa’s (1-4-1) lone marker came from Austin Watson midway through the second period, with assists from Thomas Chabot and Mike Reilly.

Thatcher Demko had 34 saves and collected his first win of the season for the Canucks.

Sens goalie Matt Murray stopped 28-of-35 shots.

With just 54 seconds left on the game clock, Sutter snuck his third goal of the night in behind the Ottawa goaltender.

Juolevi beat Murray with a long-range blast to make the score 6-1 three minutes earlier.

It was the Finnish defenceman’s first NHL goal.

Hughes had widened Vancouver’s lead to four 12:12 into the final frame after Horvat’s shot clinked off both posts. The young defenceman deftly snatched up the rebound and deposited it home

Watson got Ottawa on the board 11:58 into the second, deflecting in a shot from Chabot, despite having two Canucks defenders draped all over him. Demko didn’t appear to see the puck until it was behind him in the net.

Vancouver was quick to regain the two-goal lead.

Thirty seconds after Watson scored, Horvat won a draw in his own zone and sent the puck to Nils Hoglander in the neutral zone. Hoglander chased the puck over Vancouver’s blue line and dived, poking it to Pearson. The left-winger fired a wrist shot past Murray for his first goal of the season.

Sutter padded Vancouver’s lead with a short-handed marker, his second goal of the night, 17:44 into the second frame.

Canucks winger J.T. Miller had been called for slashing on Ottawa’s prized rookie Tim Stutzle, drawing the ire of some Sens players. Chants of “boot him!” emanated from the ice as Miller made his way to the box.

Artem Anisimov blasted a shot at Demko on the ensuing power play and the Canucks netminder dived backwards to make the stop.

Antoine Roussel picked up the loose puck and got it to Sutter, who streaked down the ice and took a wrist shot from the top of the face-off circle that found the top-left corner of the net.

The veteran centre already had a highlight-reel-worthy goal on the night, having flicked a diving backhand in past Murray 9:31 into the first frame.

Motte put the Canucks up 2-0 before the end of the first, stealing the puck as Ottawa tried to clear it from deep within their own end as Vancouver changed lines.

Motte sent a pass to Beagle, who waited for the right moment to put it back on the Winger’s tape. Motte then buried a snap shot from the top of the crease.

Roussel and Josh Brown drop the gloves midway through the third period, with boisterous encouragement from their respective benches. Neither seemed to get a blow in before the pair were separated by officials and sent to the box.

Tempers flared again shortly after Hughes scored. Watson took umbrage with Zack McEwen’s hit on Brady Tkachuk and faced off with the big forward at centre ice. They continued to have words in the box and their teammates appeared to exchange verbal jabs from the benches.

Monday’s matchup was the first in a three-game series between Ottawa and Vancouver. The Canucks will play host again on Wednesday and Thursday.

NOTES: Stutzle returned to the Sens lineup after missing three games with a wrist injury. ? Vancouver has allowed more goals (34) than any other team in the league this season.

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Quick Reaction: Pacers 129, Raptors 114 – Raptors Republic

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TOR Raptors 114 Final
Box Score
129 IND Pacers

A. Baynes14 MIN, 9 PTS, 2 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 4-9 FG, 1-4 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, -2 +/-

Baynes clearly has a lot more pep in his step since righting his early season wrongs over the past few games. Tonight was another stride in the right direction. Indiana’s bigs were cheating off of him on numerous occasions, and Baynes burned them for it. The big Aussie displayed some really soft touch around the rim, and helped free up space for his guards with some rock solid screens on the perimeter.

K. Lowry32 MIN, 12 PTS, 2 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 2-11 FG, 1-5 3FG, 7-7 FT, 0 BLK, 2 TO, -4 +/-

Kyle started this one looking a little hungover from his 2 game absence, turning the ball over and playing quite sloppy basketball by his standards in the first half. Lowry failed to counterbalance his shoddy offense with any other sort of real contribution in this game. He notched up the intensity up a bit in the fourth quarter, but relied heavily on his teammates for points as he struggled to put the ball in the net all night long.

N. Powell39 MIN, 24 PTS, 6 REB, 6 AST, 1 STL, 8-19 FG, 2-7 3FG, 6-6 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -14 +/-

Powell provided the offensive spark Toronto needed in this one, filling it up from multiple areas from the moment the game tipped. Shades of 2017 Playoff Powell were on display tonight, as Norm was both ultra aggressive and efficient whenever he touched the ball. He slashed to the cup like a madman in control, and his jumper was looking buttery. Without Norm’s immeasurable offensive boost, this one might have been over at halftime.


O. Anunoby27 MIN, 10 PTS, 5 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 4-8 FG, 2-3 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -5 +/-

OG followed up his best game of the season with a fine performance on Monday evening. The work he’s putting in to his jump shot is clearly paying off, as he’s been an absolute marksman to start the year. His night was cut short by a bloody lip, but he still managed to hit double figures for the 9th consecutive game. Yeah that’s cool.

F. VanVleet34 MIN, 25 PTS, 4 REB, 6 AST, 2 STL, 11-21 FG, 3-5 3FG, 0-1 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, -16 +/-

With Lowry back at his side, FVV demanded less defensive attention on Monday evening than he did yesterday, which directly increased his appetite to score. Fred did a solid job of supplementing his barrage of pull up jimmys with attacking open space early and often. Offense was tough to come by at points in this one, but Fred was one of the few who seemed to keep it rolling all night long.

C. Boucher29 MIN, 9 PTS, 9 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 3-12 FG, 1-6 3FG, 2-4 FT, 2 BLK, 2 TO, -15 +/-

The boy was back tonight. Well, at least from a defensive standpoint he was. After a couple rather pedestrian outings for the wacky-waving-inflatable-arm-flailing-tube man, Boucher served up a tasty defensive performance on Monday. Boucher saw the fear in his teammate’s eyes when they looked at Myles Turner in the first half, then said, “hold my beer”. He was an absolute shot-bothering stud during the second half, anchoring a performance which could’ve only been improved by a much more accurate jump shot.

S. Johnson25 MIN, 4 PTS, 4 REB, 6 AST, 2 STL, 0-1 FG, 0-0 3FG, 4-4 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, 3 +/-

Stanimal began his night with one hell of a nasty swat on an Aaron Holiday transition lay-up attempt, and never looked back. Johnsons value might not be recognized from those lightly skimming the stat sheet, but if you watch him play, his impact on the game is pretty clear. He’s an intuitive disruptor who’s skillset shone bright in the minutes he played tonight.


Y. Watanabe15 MIN, 9 PTS, 5 REB, 0 AST, 1 STL, 2-6 FG, 1-4 3FG, 4-4 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -8 +/-

Yuta had a couple bad turnovers and didn’t show the touch around the rim that we’re used to seeing from him, but he still made a few great plays in timely spots. He’s got a smooth-looking jumper, and as has been mentioned in many a QR before, is extremely agile for a player his size.

T. Davis6 MIN, 3 PTS, 0 REB, 1 AST, 1 STL, 1-2 FG, 1-2 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, -9 +/-

Not much to say about TD’s 6 min in this one. Took two 3’s and made one. He was part of a unit that gave up a ton of points in the 2nd quarter.

D. Bembry5 MIN, 2 PTS, 2 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 1-2 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT, 1 BLK, 0 TO, -4 +/-

He filled in for OG for a couple minutes in the forth while he was getting his lip tended to, but didn’t do much that was noticeable.

M. Thomas2 MIN, 4 PTS, 0 REB, 0 AST, 0 STL, 1-1 FG, 1-1 3FG, 1-1 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 4 +/-

Thomas was standing out of bounds when he caught the ball on his first touch of the game, but swiftly made up for it with a 4-point play on the next possession. Great work staying ready from a guy who hasn’t seen the court much since the first couple games of the season.

Nick Nurse

Nurse definitely did a good job of instilling some change in the locker room at half time, turning his clubs defensive performance around. However, he was 2 quarters too late, not being able to respond to the small ball, rapid pace which Indiana played from the jump.

Things We Saw

  1. Talk about a tale of two halves. The Raptors were god awful from a defensive stand point for the first 24 minutes, then came out looking like a totally different team in the third quarter. They outscored the Pacers by 9 in the frame, but more importantly, they held them to 28 points. That doesn’t sound like much of an accomplishment, but for the pace this game was being played at, it was.
  2. Maybe it’s nagging pain from the toe infection, or it might be rust from being out of game action for a few days, but the Raps need their star player in Kyle Lowry to make more of an imprint on the game if they hope to keep trending in the right direction. Very peculiar to see Lowry, who usually contributes in multiple areas, be pretty ineffective across the board tonight. Let’s hope it’s just an aberration in the perennial All-Star’s game.
  3. Toronto has righted the ship somewhat, going 6-2 in their last 8 contests against several banged up teams. Now a real test presents itself in the form of their next game. The Raptors play the Bucks at home on Wednesday, in what should be a good litmus test for how far this club has come.

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