Hornets hot start no problem for Proviso East

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Hornets hot start no problem for Proviso East

Friday, Feb. 4, 2011
Posted 10:48 p.m.
By George M. Wilcox
YourSeason.com

For a team that was unable to practice all week, Proviso East looked like it was playing in slow motion for the first quarter.But the No. 13 Pirates found a way to rally behind leading scorer Keith Carter's game-high 22 points and reserve guard Michael Nicholas scored 13 of his 15 points in the second half as Proviso East won 75-67 Friday night at Hinsdale South in the West Suburban Gold.Hinsdale South (14-8, 5-4) made its first 10 shots from the floor in the first quarter to take a 27-14 lead. The Pirates (16-3, 7-1), which won for the ninth time in their last 10 games, chipped away and eventually tied the game at 32 at halftime."We hadn't practiced all week (because of the blizzard)," Nicholas said. "Somehow we picked it up in the second quarter."Carter and Tino Vazquez (11 points) each outscored Hinsdale South's entire team in the second quarter. Carter had eight points, Vazquez added six and the Hornets had five points. Andy Nkansah (10 points) scored both of Hinsdale South's baskets in the second quarter."We had a great start, but we were too content to trade jump shots with them," Hinsdale South coach Vince Doran said. "You have to fight like crazy and not allow them too many easy baskets."The Hornets led 23-7 in turnovers. Brock Benson (12 rebounds) and leading scorer Phil George scored 20 points each for Hinsdale South while Joe Petrak added 11 points on 3-of-5 shooting beyond the three-point arc."I think the second quarter hurt us," Benson said. "Besides that, I think we played pretty well. We all played at 100 percent. It was a learning experience. I think we can keep this going for the rest of the season."George scored 11 points in the first quarter and made his first three three-point attempts to start the game, but did not score in the third quarter when Proviso outscored Hinsdale 21-16. Hinsdale South entered the game with five wins in its last six games.Proviso East won the previous meeting 66-45 on Dec. 17 in Maywood. The Pirates host district rival Proviso West at 2:30 p.m. Saturday."It was a good game, but we're looking forward to Proviso West," Nicholas said. "We don't want to overlook anybody."

Fast Break Morning Update: Blackhawks win, Jimmy Butler starts All-Star Game

Fast Break Morning Update: Blackhawks win, Jimmy Butler starts All-Star Game

Here are some of Sunday's top stories in Chicago sports:

Jimmy Butler: 'Hopefully I’m not going to get traded'

Patrick Kane leads Blackhawks to win in Buffalo homecoming

What Joe Maddon wants to see next from Javier Baez

Jose Abreu ready for 2017 after season full of 'different challenges'

Wojnarowski: Bulls-Celtics Jimmy Butler trade talks 'will loom over the entire week'

After surreal offseason, Ben Zobrist comes to Cubs camp in style as World Series MVP

White Sox rookie Charlie Tilson out at least 10 days with foot injury

Fire score five goals for fourth preseason win

Simeon beats rival Morgan Park for city championship

Former Northwestern football player Torri Stuckey now focuses on helping others

Jimmy Butler: 'Hopefully I’m not going to get traded'

Jimmy Butler: 'Hopefully I’m not going to get traded'

NEW ORLEANS — Every All-Star isn’t created equal, even by the slimmest of margins as the best 24 NBA players take their turn on the midseason stage.

So Jimmy Butler being announced among the first five as an All-Star starter had to represent some form of validation, now that he’s not a novice at the whole experience and he’s able to go through the motions of the hectic weekend without breaking much of a sweat.

But despite being a three-time All-Star and routinely mentioned as one of the game’s top 15 players or even top 10, he can’t shake the trade rumors that have seemed to follow him since this time last season.

As he finished up his All-Star experience at Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, clarity was nowhere to be found—although heading to some tropical island for a couple days to actually unwind with clear water and warm air seemed to be the best therapy if he’s stressed by the uncertainty of the next few days.

“What’s Thursday? Oh, trade deadline,” Butler said. “I don’t know. I don’t know. Am I anxious? Come on, man. I don’t worry about it. It don’t bother or scare me none.”

“Hopefully I’m not going to get traded but I don’t know. I don’t control that. Control what I can control, like going on vacation.”

Surely it has to be frustrating for a guy who’s elevated his game yet again, averaging 24.5 points, 6.3 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 1.8 steals for the Bulls in 51 games. But he refuses to let it damper his All-Star spirits, playing with some of the best players in the world and a few guys he calls friends, like DeAndre Jordan and Kevin Durant.

“Not for me,” said Butler of the potential stress. “Not saying I’m untradeable but I don’t think about that. If I’m not in a Bulls uniform, I’ll give you a hug and say goodbye to you.”

Moments after Butler made his statement in the media room, the floodgates opened for the trade market as fellow Olympian DeMarcus Cousins was traded from the Sacramento Kings to the New Orleans Pelicans for what seemed to be mere fodder, pennies on the dollar for the most talented center in the NBA.

[SHOP: Get your Bulls gear right here]

While Cousins is far more of a handful than Butler could be, the trade almost signals a consistent truth that always bears repeating—that short of a select few, anybody can be traded.

Even a franchise altering talent like Cousins, who was traded to the city he was physically in for All-Star weekend, and included in the package of players was a guy who hit him in the groin last week (Buddy Hield), resulting in a Cousins outburst and ejection.

Butler has made his name with the Bulls, although not necessarily on the All-Star stage, a player who values defense and doesn’t have as much flash as some of the game’s shinier players.

With a six-point outing in 20 minutes, Butler was an on-court afterthought despite being a starter for the first time.

“Six? Should’ve gone for eight,” he sarcastically deadpanned.

In a relatively jovial mood through the weekend, Butler joked about the talk surrounding him and tried to brush it off as mere chatter as opposed to the franchise not seeing enough in him to make a firm commitment for the long-term, as the Boston Celtics are always hovering.

League sources expect the Celtics to engage the Bulls in conversations for the next few days, but nobody has a great feel for what either side is truly looking for.

But as Butler insisted, he’s only controlling what he can control, which is making himself a fixture for All-Star games to come as opposed to some of the first-timers who don’t know if they’ll get back here again.

“I think I got two underneath my belt,” Butler said. “I know what they’re feeling the first time, It’s so surreal like maybe I do belong here. That’s how I was thinking. Now it’s how do I get here every year? I think that’s the fun part, that’s the challenge. A lot of those guys have done it 10-plus years, hopefully I’m one.”

The only question seems to be, which uniform will it be in because the crazy season has begun.