By E. Marcel Poutout, Editor
In the debut edition of the Verbal Submission Podcast, we recap UFC Fight Night: Boston, preview UFC on Fox 14 and discuss Jon Jones
Release from Atlanta Hawks media relations:
Al Horford today was named NBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week for games played Monday, Jan. 12 through Sunday, Jan. 18.
In winning the honor for the second time this season and the third time in his career, Horford helped the Hawks to a perfect 4-0 week (road wins over Philadelphia, Boston, Toronto and Chicago), averaging 21.7 points, 8.0 rebounds and 6.3 assists in 30.7 minutes (.844 FG%, .846 FT%) in three games played. He led the NBA in FG% for the week and ranked ninth in assist/turnover ratio (6.33), while finishing seventh in the Eastern Conference in assists and eighth in points per game.
Horford scored over 20 points and shot over .700 from the field in all three of his games played during the week. In the 1/13 contest at Philadelphia, he recorded his first career triple-double with 21 points, 10 rebounds and a career-high tying 10 assists in 29 minutes (8-10 FGs, 5-6 FTs). According to the Elias Sports Bureau, he became the first NBA player this season to record a triple-double in less than 30 minutes of playing time, and is the first Hawk accomplish the feat since 1983.
He previously won Player of the Week honors this season for games played Dec. 15 through Dec. 21.
Including the 4-0 week, Atlanta has won 12 consecutive games overall (tying the second longest streak in club history) and a franchise-record 12 straight on the road.
Release from Georgia State Athletics:
Junior R.J. Hunter scored 14 of the Panthers’ final 15 points to lead Georgia State to a 60-54 win over Arkansas State on Monday night at the Convocation Center. With his final free throw make, Hunter tied Rodney Hamilton’s all-time Georgia State scoring mark of 1,515 points.
Hunter will go for the record on Saturday back in Atlanta as the Panthers host UL Lafayette in a rematch of the Sun Belt tournament championship game from last year at 2 p.m.
Hunter finished with 23 points, going a perfect 12-of-12 from the free throw line, including six in the final 47 seconds to secure the win. He added eight rebounds in his 82nd career start which is tied for the sixth-most in program history.
Georgia State (12-7, 5-3 Sun Belt) shot just 35.8 percent from the floor as the Panthers were playing their third game in five days. However, the road team made up for it by turning the ball over just nine times and outrebounding the Red Wolves 41-32, including 13-10 on the offensive glass.
Arkansas State (8-9, 3-5 Sun Belt) got a double-double from Anthony Livingston who scored 20 points and pulled down 13 rebounds, but shot just 28.6 percent from the floor.
Playing without the services of senior Ryan Harrow who was suspended for the game due to an accumulation of technical fouls, redshirt-junior Kevin Ware stepped up with 10 first half points and junior Markus Crider just missed a double-double with seven points and 10 rebounds.
“This was a true team effort tonight,” head coach Ron Hunter said. “Playing without Ryan, we knew we needed some other guys to step up and they did. Championship teams find ways to gut out wins like this and I am really proud of this team right now.
“As a coach and father, I am proud of R.J.’s accomplishment. I have always said that I am not big on individual awards, but the way he stepped up in the second half to help us win this game and then tie the record is special.”
Georgia State opened the game scoring the first seven points as Ware made a 3-pointer and jumper. After Arkansas State tied the game at 7-7, Georgia State continued to push the first half tempo, building a 22-14 lead with 7:32 to play.
Following a free throw by Ware with 3:45 to play gave Georgia State a 29-19 lead, its biggest of the half, the Red Wolves held the Panthers scoreless the remainder of the half and went on an 8-0 run to trail by just two, 29-27 going into the locker room.
Arkansas State took its first lead of the game, 34-33, with 14:30 to play, before Georgia State responded with an 8-0 run to build a 41-34 lead with 11:07 to play.
The Panthers held Arkansas State without a field goal for more than nine minutes to build a 47-41 lead with 5:28 to play following a jumper by Hunter. Arkansas State was held to just free throws during that time.
As time started to run down, Hunter scored eight straight Panther points, including a floater in the lane which gave Georgia State a 53-50 lead with 2:21 to play. He added two more free throws with 47 seconds to play to put the Panthers ahead 55-52.
Senior Ryann Green scored a career-high seven points for the third game in a row, playing a career-high 32 minutes on Mondaynight.
Isaiah Dennis added seven points in just 14 minutes as the Panthers finished 19-of-25 from the free throw line.
Sean Gardner added 19 points for Arkansas State, while Cameron Golden chipped in with 10.