Elias Says ...
A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports.
A daily glance inside the numbers from the world of sports:
• Two men who began their major league careers when Ronald Reagan was president headlined the transactions column Friday. The Yankees traded Gary Sheffield to Detroit and Craig Biggio re-signed with Houston.
The Tigers will be Sheffield's seventh major league team. With 455 career home runs, Sheffield is in position to become the first member of the 500-home run club to play for at least seven teams. Two players hit 400 or more home runs and played for at least seven clubs: Jose Canseco (462 HRs, seven teams) and Dave Kingman (442 HRs, seven teams).
The 2007 season will be Biggio's 20th with the Astros. Only three National League players entered the majors in the past 50 years and began their career by playing their first 20 seasons with their original team: Willie Stargell, Phil Niekro and Tony Gwynn.
• Joe Johnson scored 34 points in Atlanta's 111-102 win at Toronto. Johnson has begun the season by scoring 25 or more points in each of the first five games, tying a Hawks record. Lou Hudson scored at least 25 points in each of Atlanta's first five games in October 1971, and Bob Pettit did that in the first five games played by the St. Louis Hawks in October 1961.
• Yao Ming had 35 points, 17 rebounds and seven blocks in the Rockets' victory over the Knicks. Since the start of the 1990-91 season, only one other NBA player had at least 35 points, 17 rebounds and seven blocks in one game: Shaquille O'Neal, who had 41-17-7 for the Lakers against Chicago on Nov. 19, 1999.
• Deron Williams had 26 points, 14 assists and five rebounds in Utah's 107-100 win at Boston. In the past 20 years, only two other players had at least 26 points, 14 assists and five rebounds in one game against the Celtics, and they did it in back-to-back months: Portland's Rod Strickland in January 1996 and the Nets' Chris Childs in February 1996.
• Shaquille O'Neal returned to the Heat lineup and Miami beat the Nets, but Shaq scored only 13 points in 29 minutes before fouling out. In only two other games in O'Neal's NBA career did he score fewer than 15 points, play fewer than 30 minutes and commit six personal fouls: Dec. 11, 2005, vs. Washington and Dec. 16, 1999, at Atlanta.
• Washington trailed 91-80 with less than 10 minutes remaining but rallied to beat Milwaukee 116-111. The Wizards did not win a single game last season in which they were behind by at least 10 points in the fourth quarter. Their last such victory was Apr. 17, 2005, against Charlotte.
• Al Harrington had 32 points in the Pacers' 93-83 win against Orlando on Friday night, less than a week after he scored 32 points in a victory over the Knicks. Harrington's two 30-point performances in six games with Indiana this season match his total of 30-point efforts in 354 games in his first tenure with the team (1998-99 to 2003-04).
• Allen Iverson shot 6-for-20 (.300) in Philadelphia's loss to Denver. That type of performance was far more common for Iverson several years ago. In five seasons from 2000-01 through 2004-05, Iverson had 37 games in which he took at least 20 shots and shot no better than 30 percent from the field (an average of slightly more than seven occurrences per season). But last season he had only two such games.
• Buffalo, trailing 2-0 at home to Florida early in the second period, rallied to win 5-4 in overtime. The Sabres have trailed by at least two goals in seven games this season, and they've won six of them! Only two other NHL teams have as many as three such comeback wins this season: Atlanta and St. Louis (three each).
• The Ducks, who shut out the Canucks 6-0 in Vancouver on Thursday night, were blanked 3-0 by the Flames on Friday. It was only the seventh time in NHL history that a team posted a shutout win by a margin of at least six goals and then lost by a shutout the next day. The last team to do that was Tampa Bay on March 3-4, 2001, with a 6-0 win on Long Island and a 6-0 loss in New Jersey the following day.
• Miikka Kiprusoff recorded the shutout for the Flames. It was Kiprusoff's second shutout of the season and league-high 12th over the past two seasons. Martin Brodeur, Dominik Hasek and Cristobal Huet are tied for second, each with eight shutouts since the start of the 2005-06 season.
• The Rangers' Michael Nylander scored a goal 15 seconds into the game in Atlanta on Friday night. It was the fastest goal from the start of a game in the NHL this season and the fastest by a Rangers player since March 15, 1989, when defenseman Michel Petit scored a goal at the 14-second mark against Winnipeg at Madison Square Garden.
• Marian Hossa had only one shot on goal in Atlanta' 5-2 loss to the Rangers, and it came with 6:18 remaining in the third period. But with that attempt, Hossa has now had at least one shot on goal in 100 consecutive regular-season games, the longest current streak in the NHL. Next-longest: Simon Gagne, with 97 straight.
• Smart move by Tom Renney to start Henrik Lundqvist. Including Friday's contest, Hossa has not scored a goal in five career games against Lundqvist, but he's scored eight goals (and added eight assists) in 11 games versus Kevin Weekes.
• Edmonton's Dwayne Roloson stopped 26 shots on goal in leading the Oilers to a 4-1 win over the Blue Jackets in Columbus on Friday night. It was his first career win at Nationwide Arena. Roloson had been 0-4-2 in seven games (six starts) in Columbus prior to Friday's victory, despite a fine 2.34 goals-against average and .922 save percentage in those games.
• The Red Wings shut out Nashville 3-0 on Friday night after beating Edmonton by the same score Wednesday night. It's the first time that Dominik Hasek has posted consecutive shutouts since Dec. 21-23, 2001.