Welcome to another edition of “What Happened Last Night?” in which we look at stories of note from the previous evening in the sports world, just in case you missed it for whatever reason. So let’s get you up to date:
Around the Association…
Good night for the Lakers all around: for one thing, they won, beating the New Orleans Future Pelicans 103-87. For another, Kobe Bryant became the youngest player in NBA history to score 30,000 career points, finishing with 29 on the night. Kobe, of course, has hinted he might retire when his contract expires after next season, but with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time scoring record still on the table, will he be able to pull himself away? Clearly he’s got juice left in the tank.
Elsewhere: good night for L.A. teams in general – the Clippers blew out the Mavs, 112-90. The Knicks needed a J.R. Smith buzzer-beater to hand the Bobcats another heartbreaking loss. And… man, we’ve gotta tell you, there were a lot of games last night – and pretty much every matchup was mediocre on paper. There’s not much we can say about the rest of these games except that they happened, and one team won and the other lost. Check them for yourself and see if you agree.
Sounds like Leo’s okay.
If you’re a fan of FC Barcelona, or soccer being played on an unimaginable level, the sight of Lionel Messi on the ground in pain from a knee injury he suffered during a match yesterday probably made you sad. Well, maybe this will cheer you up: Messi was diagnosed with just a bruise, is already working out, and might even play on Sunday. Some are laughing at the whole “carried off on a stretcher” episode given all Messi suffered was a bruise, but can you blame Barca for being cautious?
Wisconsin AD replaces coach with self.
When Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema left for Arkansas, the Badgers, beyond facing a critical decision for the future of the program in finding a replacement, faced a more short-term problem: who will coach the team in the Rose Bowl? Early reports were that Bielema wanted to do it himself, but let’s face it – that was never going to happen. Luckily, Wisconsin AD Barry Alvarez had his man for the Rose Bowl job lined up: Barry Alvarez.
He’s going to coach the team himself, and it’s not like he’s unprepared to do it: he was Wisconsin’s last coach before Bielema, serving 16 years on the job and doing pretty damn well for himself, going 118-73-4 and winning three Rose Bowls with a program that had gone 6-27 in the three years prior to his taking over. Hell, if Alvarez decides he has the coaching bug again after this game and appoints himself as the full-time guy (not likely, but you never know), Wisconsin coud do a whole lot worse in its coaching search.
College basketball upset watch:
Nada. Five top 25 teams in action, five top 25 victories. Gonzaga got all it could handle from Washington State, though, eventually prevailing 71-69 on a closing-seconds layup to remain unbeaten.
There. Caught up.
Hope this roundup was useful if you missed last night’s action. We know how easy it is to get lost in something else and miss a night of sports. Why, hypothetically, that could have even happened last night to the person who wrote this post. Perhaps he was at a concert, couldn’t catch the night’s news, and was as in the dark as you were until this morning. You know, possibly.
Photos via Getty