Date: December 1, 2009

Elias Says...

By Elias Sports Bureau, Inc.
Special to ESPN.com

NFL

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Brees

BREES LIKE A HOT KNIFE THROUGH BUTTER

Drew Brees completed 18 of 23 passes for 371 yards with five touchdowns and no interceptions on Monday. He's only the second player in NFL history to in one game:

a) throw for 350 or more yards b) complete at least 75 percent of his passes c) throw five touchdowns d) not throw an interception

The only other player to do that is Tom Brady, who has done it three times (twice in 2007 and against the Titans this season).

New Orleans Saints, New England Patriots, Tennessee Titans

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Brees

BELICHICK HASN'T SEEN THIS BEFORE

Brees became the first player to throw five touchdown passes against a team with Bill Belichick as head coach.

New Orleans Saints, New England Patriots

SAINTS NEARLY AVERAGE 10 YARDS PER PLAY

New Orleans ran 50 plays from scrimmage on Monday and averaged 9.6 yards per play. Since the 1970 merger only two teams have had as high an average yards per play while running a half-century of plays in one game: the Jets against the Colts in 1972 (10.6) and the Rams against the Chargers in 2000 (9.9).

New Orleans Saints, New England Patriots, St. Louis Rams, New York Jets, San Diego Chargers, Indianapolis Colts

NEW ORLEANS HAS 4TH-MOST POINTS THROUGH 11 GAMES

The Saints have scored 407 points this season, fourth-most in NFL history through 11 games. The three ahead of New Orleans: 2007 Patriots (442), 1950 Rams (415), 2000 Rams (412).

New Orleans Saints, New England Patriots, St. Louis Rams

SAINTS AND COLTS GO INTO THE HISTORY BOOKS

The Saints and Colts are the first teams in NFL history to start 11-0 in the same season.

New Orleans Saints, New England Patriots, Indianapolis Colts

NBA

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Mayo

THE GOOD AND BAD FOR MAYO

O.J. Mayo scored 20 points on Tuesday but the Grizzlies were outscored by 34 points while he was on the court. No other player this season has scored at least 20 points but had his team outscored by more than 30 points while he was on the court. The last Grizzlies player to suffer that distinction was Pau Gasol in 2002.

Memphis Grizzlies, Utah Jazz

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Jennings

JENNINGS CONCLUDES STELLAR NOVEMBER

Brandon Jennings finished November with 308 points in 14 games, an average of 22.0 per game. Last season O.J. Mayo averaged 23.1 points in 15 November games, but before that, the last rookie to average 22 points per game in November while appearing in at least a dozen games was Michael Jordan for the 1984 Bulls (26.2 per game in 14 games).

Milwaukee Bucks, Chicago Bulls

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Ellis

ELLIS HOT OVER LAST 5 GAMES

Monta Ellis scored 45 points tonight and has 176 over his last five games. Over the last 25 years only two other Warriors players had that many points in a five-game span: Antawn Jamison (186, December 2000) and Jason Richardson (176, March 2006).

Golden State Warriors, Indiana Pacers

76ERS LOSE DESPITE LARGE REBOUND MARGIN

The 76ers lost to the Mavericks on Monday despite recording 23 more rebounds than Dallas. Over the last 23 seasons (since 1988-89) Philadelphia has lost only one other game in which it had a plus-23 rebound margin (against the Raptors in last year's season opener).

Philadelphia 76ers, Dallas Mavericks, Toronto Raptors

NHL

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Duchene

ANOTHER AVALANCHE YOUNGSTER HAS MULTI-GOAL GAME

Matt Duchene recorded his first two-goal game in the NHL in the Avalanche's 3-0 victory in Tampa. Duchene is the third 18-year-old to score two goals in an NHL game this season, joining his Colorado teammate, Ryan O'Reilly (Nov. 6 vs. Chicago), and Atlanta's Evander Kane (Nov. 13 vs. Los Angeles).

The Avs are the fourth NHL team to have two or more players with multiple-goal games at age 18 or younger in the same season. The previous instances were all during World War II, when teams relied heavily on very old and very young players. The Bruins had three players do that in 1942-43 (Jackie Schmidt, Bep Guidolin and Don Gallinger) and two in 1943-44 (Gallinger and Guidolin), and the Maple Leafs had two in 1943-44 (Jack Hamilton and Ted "Teeder" Kennedy).

Colorado Avalanche, Tampa Bay Lightning

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Crosby

CONSECUTIVE MULTIPLE-GOAL GAMES FOR CROSBY

The Penguins completed a sweep of their home-and-home series against the Rangers with a 5-2 win at Madison Square Garden on Monday, after beating them 8-3 in Pittsburgh on Saturday.

Sidney Crosby scored three goals in Saturday's game and two more on Monday. It's only the second time that Crosby has had consecutive multiple-goal games in his five seasons in the NHL. The previous instance was almost exactly one year earlier: Nov. 28-29, 2008, when he scored twice at Buffalo and three times at home against New Jersey.

New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Buffalo Sabres, New Jersey Devils

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Gaborik

GABORIK IS THE FIRST TO 20 GOALS

Marian Gaborik became the first 20-goal scorer in the NHL this season when he opened the scoring in the Rangers' game against the Penguins on Monday. In the last 50 years, the only other Rangers who were the first player to reach the 20-goal plateau in a season, based on the earliest date, were Rod Gilbert in 1966-67 and Theo Fleury in 2000-01 (tied with Bill Guerin and Ziggy Palffy).

New York Rangers, Pittsburgh Penguins

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Iginla

IGINLA LEADS NHL IN GOALS AND ASSISTS IN NOVEMBER

Jarome Iginla, who had a goal and an assist in the Flames' 5-0 win in Nashville, led all NHL players in both goals (13) and points (20, tied with Joe Thornton) in November. The 13 goals were Iginla's second-highest total ever in one calendar month, behind the 14 he scored in December 2007. It's the fourth time that Iginla has registered at least 20 points in one month and the first time since his career-high 26 points in December 2006.

Calgary Flames, Nashville Predators

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Kiprusoff

KIPRUSOFF 2ND CONSECUTIVE SHUTOUT

Miikka Kiprusoff's 5-0 win at Nashville was his second consecutive shutout and the 33rd of his NHL career. Kiprusoff's last six shutouts have all come on the road (his final three last season and all three this season), though only five of his 27 regular-season shutouts before that were in road games.

Calgary Flames, Nashville Predators

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Afinogenov

A LATE GAME-WINNER FOR AFINOGENOV

Maxim Afinogenov's goal at 19:54 of the third period snapped a 3-3 tie and gave the Thrashers a 4-3 win over the Panthers. It was only the second tiebreaking goal scored in the final ten seconds of the third period in an NHL game over the last three seasons. The other one was by Dustin Penner for Edmonton against Colorado on Oct. 12, 2008 (at 19:54 of the third period, Oilers won 3-2).

Afinogenov's goal was also the latest third-period tiebreaking goal in Thrashers history, breaking the mark set by Jim Slater against Tampa Bay on Dec. 26, 2006 (19:51).

Atlanta Thrashers, Florida Panthers

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Umberger

UMBERGER'S 2ND CAREER HAT TRICK

R.J. Umberger notched the second hat trick of his NHL career with three goals for the Blue Jackets in their 5-2 win against St. Louis. Umberger has goals in only three of his last 22 games but each time he scored he did so more than once. In addition to Monday's hat trick, he had two-goal games in Washington (Nov. 1) and Nashville (Nov. 21).

Columbus Blue Jackets, St. Louis Blues, Nashville Predators, Washington Capitals

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Backstrom

3 POINTS FOR BACKSTROM

Nicklas Backstrom scored two goals and assisted on another in the Capitals' 3-2 win against the Hurricanes. Backstrom began the season with a streak of four consecutive multiple-point games but this was only the third time he had more than one point in 23 games since then. Backstrom's three points on Monday night were one more than he recorded in his previous eight games combined (Nov. 13-28: no goals, two assists).

Washington Capitals, Carolina Hurricanes

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Miller

MILLER AT HOME IN TORONTO

Ryan Miller and the Sabres won 3-0 in Toronto on Monday night. Miller has won his last seven games in Toronto, holding the Maple Leafs to a total of nine goals, and he's 10-3-0 in 13 career games at Air Canada Center. His ten regular-season wins in that building are the most by any visiting goaltender. In fact, only four goaltenders have won as many regular-season games at the ACC for the Maple Leafs as Miller has won there with Buffalo: Curtis Joseph, Ed Belfour, Vesa Toskala and Andrew Raycroft.

Buffalo Sabres, Toronto Maple Leafs


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