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leg up on the latter). Maybe the team will maintain its

  • December 14, 2017 4:55 AM GMT

    OKLAHOMA CITY -- Indiana coach Nate McMillan wrote an instruction on the white board in the Pacers locker room Sunday: Scrap.Jeff Teague did just that, scoring eight of his 30 points in overtime, harassing Russell Westbrook defensively all night and lifting the short-handed Pacers to a 115-111 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder.It was Indianas first road victory of the season and it came without star forward Paul George, who missed his second straight game with a sore left ankle.Youve got to fight for everything, McMillan said. I thought the guys tonight, we did that. We were without a couple of players, but the guys in uniform came out and played the game the right way. They played hard and we got our first road win.Oklahoma Citys Russell Westbrook had his fifth triple-double of the season -- as many as the rest of the NBA combined -- with 31 points, 15 assists and 11 rebounds, but went 13 of 34 from the field. Westbrook calmly used an expletive to describe the way he played.We just wasnt ready, he said. Just wasnt ready tonight, starting with myself. ... I could have did a lot of things better, man. Got to come out and be ready to play. Tonight I felt like I let my guys down all around. Ive got to be better.Teague matched his season scoring high and added nine assists and six steals. He hit two free throws with 4.6 seconds left in regulation to put the Pacers up three.Westbrook hit a 3-pointer with 2.4 seconds left to tie it for the Thunder and Glenn Robinson III missed a well-guarded 10-footer at the buzzer, forcing overtime.Teagues 3-pointer in the opening minute of overtime put the Pacers ahead for good. With 1:09 left, he converted a three-point play to make it 113-107, and he hit two free throws with 19.1 seconds left to put Indiana up 115-111. He said the Pacers werent flustered after Westbrooks tying 3-pointer at the end of regulation and that McMillan told his team just to go win the game.We had nothing to lose there, Teague said. We knew they were going to make some plays, so we just have to go out and win the game.Six Pacers scored in double figures and two of them had double-doubles -- Robinson with 16 points and 11 rebounds, and Thaddeus Young with 20 points and 11 rebounds. Myles Turner just missed another with 15 points and nine rebounds.Enes Kanter added 16 points for the Thunder.Oklahoma City rallied from a 15-point second-half deficit to force overtime but wasnt able to recover from a dismal third quarter in which it missed 12 of its first 13 shots and went 4 of 17 from the field.TIP-INS:Pacers: Robinson III made his first start of the season in place of George (ankle) and C.J. Miles (knee), who also sat out due to injury. ... Another forward, Kevin Seraphin, also missed the game with a sore left knee ... Teague matched his career high with six steals.Thunder: Oklahoma City saw its Northwest Division lead shrink to a half-game over Portland. ... The Thunder ended a stretch during which they played eight out of nine games at home. ... The overtime was the second of the season for Oklahoma City, which beat Phoenix on Oct. 28 after an extra period.GEORGE, MILES OUT:George missed his third game, and his second in a row, since spraining his left ankle against Philadelphia on Nov. 11, while the player whos started in his place, Miles, sat out with a sore left knee that he hurt on Friday in a loss to Phoenix.Both players underwent MRIs on Saturday and while the results were negative for structural damage, McMillan said George and Miles would also be out for Mondays home game against Golden State, and then will be reassessed to determine their availability for Wednesdays game against Atlanta.QUOTABLE:I have been waiting on my opportunity, just working hard the whole offseason. This guy (Seraphin) told me a couple of days ago, literally, `Be ready. You never know. Then I walk in the gym and (George) is out, C.J. is hurt and I got to step up. I am just proud of this whole team for sticking together and fighting even though we are a couple of men down. -- Robinson on his performance.UP NEXT:Pacers: Host Golden State on the second night of a back-to-back featuring last seasons Western Conference finalists.Thunder: At the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday night to start a three-game trip. Balenciaga Speed Trainer Pas Cher .Y. -- Sabres forward Drew Stafford has witnessed plenty of turmoil during his eight seasons in Buffalo. Nike Free Rn Distance 2 Femme . - After leading the Saints to a fourth playoff appearance in five seasons, Drew Brees expressed confidence in the direction of his team and, perhaps more importantly, showed a willingness to listen to contract proposals if the team needs his help getting under the NFLs salary cap. . Walcott is available for Saturdays home match against Southampton as Arsenal looks to extend its two-point lead at the top of the Premier League. The Gunners are currently the second highest scorers in the league but Wenger insists Walcott will add something extra to his team. Vapormax 2018 Noir . Woodson said during a radio interview Thursday that the Knicks Carmelo Anthony doesnt get the same calls as other superstars. Nike Homme Femme Free RN Blanc Pure Platinum Noir . Perhaps Carroll was so prepared for a break because he believes there is very little the Seattle Seahawks need heading into the off-season. "I dont see anything that we need to add. We just have to get better," Carroll said. This story appears in ESPN The Magazines Nov. 28 Tall Ball Issue. Subscribe today!It has been a few weeks now, and the Chicago Cubs are still World Series champions. And if history is any guide, everything familiar about the identity of the fan base and organization will be erased as the price of that title. The Cubs can no longer mask a century of incompetence with curses, afternoon drinking and low expectations. Theyve always had the resources of a superpower -- and now they have to start acting like one.Having witnessed the same shift in Boston, Theo Epstein knows this better than most. After almost 100 years of failure, the Red Sox still do business now the same as they did before winning the World Series in 2004-last winter, they signed David Price to a seven-year, $217 million free agent contract, just as they signed Manny Ramirez to an eight-year, $160 million contract in December 2000. But the national sympathy for their eternal heartbreak is gone. Even before Game 7, there was nothing cute or disadvantaged about the Cubs either, as evidenced by their enviable ability to sign Jason Heyward to an eight-year, $184 million contract-and bench him during the World Series.The Red Sox marketed and sold themselves as a ragtag band of rebels fighting both the supernatural and the omnipotent Yankees. Fans of the Rays, who happened to be the real underdogs, even coined a term for Bostons sly deception, referring to them as the Just as Evil Empire. Chicago, like Boston 12 years ago, can no longer claim the image of underdog on the field-especially since the Cubs are far from underdogs on the balance sheet, where they rake in profits. An identity change is coming, and they should embrace it.In this money game, with no salary cap and limited revenue-sharing, the Cubs, in the third-biggest market in the country, should have been dominant for decades. Instead, they were baseballs family screwup, partying with the trust fund money, winding up on academic probation. The generations of fans desperate for a winner have certainly suffered since 1946, but ownership certainly did not. The Cubs have been one of the richest teams in baseball. The team sold in 2009 for $845 million and in March was estimated by Forbes to be worth $2.2 billion, fifth best iin MLB.ddddddddddddThe lovable loser narrative was lucrative-it sold lots of tickets, beer and T-shirts and allowed an enormous fan base to feel sorry for itself-but in reality, the Cubs were cursed only in one way: by their own ownership mediocrity.Today, they have the opportunity to be the dominant team in the National League-and probably in baseball-for years to come. In Epstein, they have a president of baseball operations who knows how to build a farm system so well he can take big gambles on free agents, and the Ricketts familys enormous resources can help the team survive even a deal like Heywards. With old money but a new-school attitude, baseball wants its teams built the Epstein way, lest they face oppressive luxury tax penalties.You have to embrace the suck, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman told me earlier this year. Look at Theo and the Cubs. They had money, but they built the farm system, lost and lost, and told their fan base the payoff was coming. George Steinbrenners way is gone. You cant do it that way anymore. Thats why we made the Aroldis Chapman deal with them. Embrace the suck. Build the contender.The Cubs can now go back to being the power they once were, for from 1906 to 1945 Chicago went to the World Series 10 times and won it twice. But the opportunity to shed the underdog image will come at an enormous cost: the identity the franchise has cultivated for the past half-century as a great place to start the bachelorette party before the North Side pub crawl kicks into high gear.Perhaps Chicagos transition to superpower wont be as harsh as in Boston, where agony was replaced by pink hats, expensive seats and gentrification (though Wrigleyville already has a leg up on the latter). Maybe the team will maintain its old identity even if it dominates, because so many of its celebrity fans are comedians, and because the beer has always flowed during weekday baseball when everyone else is being killed by office meetings. As expectations undoubtedly rise for the Cubs to stay on top, maybe Chicago will do something truly remarkable: win big while still being best known for having a good time. 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