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Pittsburgh Tames Philadelphia in Outdoor Battle

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The battle of Pennsylvania was an outdoor and backyard hockey fest, but the Philadelphia Flyers and the Pittsburgh Penguins don't like each other. It was also a windy and wintry mix kind of night at Heinz Field for the final outdoor game of the 2016-2017 season. The Penguins defeated the Flyers 4 to 2.

In the first period, Sidney Crosby scored on a beautiful pass from Jake Guentzel. In the second period, Nick Bonino scored on the power play, and Guentzel picked up another assist. Guentzel turned over the puck later in the period, which led to a goal by Flyers Jakub Voracek.

In the third period, Matt Cullen scored to make it 3 to 1 Pittsburgh. Later in the period, Shayne Gostisbehere scored a laser on the power play, to cut the lead in half. Wayne Simmonds did a good job of screening Matt Murray on the goal.

Pittsburgh scored its last goal of the game off a face-off won by Evgeni Malkin and Chad Ruhwedel fired the puck on net and went in. Matt Murray made 36 saves for the Penguins. Michal Neuvrith made 25 saves for the Flyers.

Justin Schultz returned for the Pittsburgh Penguins from a concussion. He played very well on defense and did a good job setting up the power play. Ron Hainsey played in his first game as a Penguin. He also did well on defense. These two teams will play each other two more times this season.

Cleveland Out Muscles New York

Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Cavaliers opened up with the New York Knicks at home to start the second half of the season, just like they did on opening night. Cleveland defeated New York 119 to 104. 

Lebron James had another triple-double last night with 18 points 13 rebounds and 15 assists. I guess it has been the year of the triple-doubles so far in the NBA. Tristan Thompson had 10 points and 14 rebounds, 6 of them were on the offensive end.

Kyrie Irving had 23 points and 6 assists, and Kyle Korver had 20 points. Courtney Lee scored 25 points for the Knicks and also grabbed 6 rebounds. 

Carmelo Anthony scored 20 points and grabbed 5 rebounds. Kristaps Porzingis scored 8 points, and he left the game in the second quarter with an ankle injury and he didn't return to action. 

Cleveland made 15 three balls and New York made 8. They also played with energy for most of the game and pushed the pace on offense and that is what Tyron Lue wants to see from them. The Cavaliers swept the season series 4-0. 

Oklahoma City Thunder Make Splash At Deadline

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

The Oklahoma City Thunder got more help today for Russell Westbrook at the trade deadline. They received Taj Gibson and Doug McDermott, and a 2018 2nd round pick for Anthony Morrow, Joffrey Lauvergne, and Cameron Payne. 

Gibson is averaging 11.6 PPG and 7 RPG. McDermott is 10.2 PPG and 3.0 RPG. This is a huge win for the Thunder on paper. They get two solid role players and they could take some pressure off of Westbrook. What would have happened if they tried to get Jimmy Butler instead?

Oklahoma City is currently 32-25 in the west and the 7th seed. Chicago is currently 28-29 and the 7th seed in the east. Does this mean that the Thunder are trying to win a playoff series and attract another big star for the future and the Bulls are just waiving the white flag for the season? Well only time will tell. 

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