Archive for the ‘ NBA Teams ’ Category

Derrick Rose set to return for Bulls

The Chicago Bulls are getting their point guard back tonight. Here’s reporting:

Derrick Rose set to return for Bulls

Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose will play Tuesday against the Portland Trail Blazers after missing the last two games because of a sprained left ankle.

“Derrick’s good to go tonight,” Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said. “Everything went well [in shootaround]. He felt really good after the last couple days of practice, so yeah, he’s ready to go.”

Rose, who initially sprained his ankle on Nov. 16 in a win over the Indiana Pacers, is in good spirits heading into his return.

The Detroit Pistons announced today that the club will honor and retire jerseys for Ben Wallace and Chauncey Billups during the 2015-16 season. Wallace will be honored during a halftime ceremony on Saturday, January 16 at 7:30 p.m. when the Pistons host the Golden State Warriors at The Palace of Auburn Hills. Billups will be honored during a halftime ceremony on Wednesday, February 10 at 7:30 p.m. when Detroit squares off against the Denver Nuggets at The Palace.

“Our franchise has an extraordinary history and it’s important that we recognize the players who not only achieved great things, but also helped define what it means to be a Piston,” said Pistons Owner Tom Gores. “Chauncey Billups and Ben Wallace are legends in Detroit and we are excited to honor their success.”

Gores said Wallace and Billups both embodied the spirit and determination of the Detroit community.

“While we celebrate their individual accomplishments, it was their selflessness that helped make them so special,” said Gores. “They showed up every day willing to work and sacrifice for the good of the team. They put winning above all else and in the process inspired a generation of Pistons fans.”

Wallace, acquired by Detroit from the Orlando Magic in 2000, spent nine seasons with the Pistons collecting NBA Defensive Player of the Year honors four times (2002, 2003, 2005, 2006) and was named a NBA All-Star four times (2003-06). Wallace was an All-NBA Second Team selection three times (2003, 2004, 2006), All-NBA Third Team selection twice (2002 and 2005) and an NBA All-Defensive First Team selection five times (2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006). During his first stint with Detroit (2000-06), the Pistons made the playoffs in five of the seven years, winning Eastern Conference Championships in 2004 and 2005 and the NBA Championship in 2004. Wallace is the franchise’s all-time leader in regular-season and playoff blocks (1,486 and 215, respectively) and ranks first among Pistons’ all-time playoff leaders in rebounds (1,237). He holds franchise single-game records for blocks in a game (10 – twice), defensive rebounds in a quarter (10) and blocks in a quarter (6). In 655 games with the Pistons, Wallace averaged 6.6 points, 11.1 rebounds, 2.3 blocks, 1.4 steals and 1.5 assists in 32.6 minutes per game.

“We celebrated many great accomplishments during my years in Detroit and to be recognized for my contributions in this way, I’m honored,” said Wallace. “I look forward to sharing this experience with all the fans who supported me throughout my years as a Piston.”

Wallace, a 6’9, 240-pound center went undrafted in the 1996 NBA Draft and spent time with Washington, Orlando, Detroit, Chicago and Cleveland. Wallace recorded 10,482 rebounds during his career, becoming one of only 37 players and the only undrafted player (Moses Malone was drafted in the 1974 American Basketball Association Draft by the Portland Trail Blazers in the ABA Dispersal Draft in 1976) in NBA history to record 10,000 rebounds. He is also one of only 10 players in NBA history to record 10,000 rebounds and 2,000 blocks and is the shortest player at 6’9 to record 2,000 career blocks. Overall, in 1,088 career NBA games, Wallace averaged 5.7 points, 9.6 rebounds, 2.0 blocks, 1.3 steals and 1.3 assists in 29.5 minutes per game.

Acquired as a free agent in 2002, Billups’ eight-year career in Detroit was highlighted by back-to-back Eastern Conference Championships and two NBA Finals appearances in 2004 and 2005. He was named NBA Finals Most Valuable Player during the Pistons NBA Championship season in 2003-04 when he averaged 21.0 points, 3.2 rebounds and 5.2 assists in five games vs. the Los Angeles Lakers. The Denver, CO native was named an NBA All-Star three times with Detroit, All-NBA Second Team (2006), All-NBA Third Team (2007) and All-NBA Defensive Second Team (2005, 2006). In 482 games with the Pistons, Billups averaged 16.5 points, 6.2 assists and 3.2 rebounds in 31.6 minutes per game.

“It’s an honor to be recognized by the Detroit Pistons organization in this manner,” said Billups. “This is a franchise with great history and tradition. To be recognized amongst the all-time great players in team history is special and I look forward to celebrating the achievements, memories and great times we shared together.”

Billups, a 6’3, 210-pound guard, nicknamed “Mr. Big Shot” for his knack of hitting big shots in close games during his playing days, was drafted with the third overall pick by the Boston Celtics in the 1997 NBA Draft. During his 17 seasons in the NBA, he spent time with Boston, Toronto, Denver, Minnesota, Detroit, New York and L.A. Clippers, and collected five All-Star appearances. He was also awarded the J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship Award in 2008, the NBA Sportsmanship Award in 2009 and the NBA Teammate of the Year Award in 2009. Overall, Billups played in 1,043 career NBA games and averaged 15.2 points, 5.4 assists, 2.9 rebounds, 1.0 steals in 31.6 minutes per game.

DaJuan Summers named D-League Performer of Week

DaJuan Summers of the Westchester Knicks today was named NBA Development League Performer of the Week for games played Thursday, Nov.12, through Sunday, Nov. 22.

Summers (6-8, 240, Georgetown) averaged 25.3 points on 54.4 shooting (31-for-57), 10.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 2.0 steals to lead Westchester to a 4-0 start to the season. On Nov. 14, he tallied 30 points on 13-of-24 shooting, to go along with 11 rebounds and two assists in an 83-79 victory over the Erie BayHawks. He posted another double-double with 18 points, 11 rebounds and four steals, in a 107-94 win over the Sioux Falls Skyforce on Nov. 20.

Summers was originally selected by the Detroit Pistons with the 35th overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft. He appeared in four games for the New York Knicks during the 2015 preseason. This year marks his second stint in the NBA D-League. During the 2012-13 season he played for the Maine Red Claws and was selected to the 2013 NBA D-League All-Star Game.

Other top performers considered include Austin’s Bryce Cotton, Bakersfield’s C.J. Wilcox, Delaware’s Sean Kilpatrick, Erie’s Melvin Ejim, Fort Wayne’s Rakeem Christmas, Idaho’s Brandon Fields, Iowa’s Cartier Martin, Los Angeles’ Manny Harris, Maine’s Jordan Mickey, Raptors 905’s Scott Suggs, Rio Grande Valley’s Raphiael Putney, Santa Cruz’s Elliot Williams and Sioux Falls’ Gregg Whittington.

Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer fined by NBA

Atlanta Hawks head coach Mike Budenholzer has been fined $25,000 for making incidental contact with a game official during live action, it was announced today by Kiki VanDeWeghe, Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations.

The incident, for which Budenholzer was assessed a technical foul and ejected, occurred with 6:27 remaining in the second quarter of Atlanta’s 109-97 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday, Nov. 21 at Quicken Loans Arena.

Warriors now 15-0, tying the best start in NBA history

The 2015 NBA Champion Golden State Warriors tied the NBA record for best start to a season by improving to 15-0 with tonight’s 118-105 win at Denver, equaling the mark set by the 1948-49 Washington Capitols and 1993-94 Houston Rockets.

The Warriors are the first defending champion in NBA history to begin the season 15-0.

Dating back to 2014-15, the Warriors have won 19 consecutive regular-season games, extending a franchise-record streak and becoming the 10th team in NBA history to win 19-straight regular-season contests. The Warriors are the first team to post win streaks of at least 15 games in consecutive seasons since the Spurs did so in 1994-95 and 1995-96. Golden State also improved upon its best road start in club history at 7-0 away from home, tying the second-longest road win streak in team annals.

The Warriors, who posted a franchise-best record of 67-15 before capturing the 2015 NBA title, are now 82-15 (.845) in the regular season dating back to 2014-15 and 98-20 (.831) including the playoffs.

Bucks assign Damien Inglis to D-League

The Milwaukee Bucks have assigned forward Damien Inglis to the Canton Charge of the NBA Development League, pursuant to the flexible assignment rule, General Manager John Hammond announced today.

Inglis has appeared in five games for the Bucks this season and averaged 1.6 points and 1.6 rebounds per game.

The Minnesota Timberwolves, led by 21.5 ppg from Andrew Wiggins, 16.0 ppg from Karl-Anthony Towns, 13.9 ppg from Zach Lavine, and 13.3 from Kevin Martin, are 0-6 at home and 5-2 on the road. Unusual. Overall, they’re 5-8 and in need of a boost. Here’s the Minneapolis Star Tribune reporting the latest on Martin, who has started just one of the 12 games he’s played this season:

Kevin Martin moving into Timberwolves starting lineup

Some have been waiting for it for a while, but Sunday Wolves coach Sam Mitchell said he’s ready to make the change. Starting with Monday’s game against winless Philadelphia at Target Center, Mitchell is going to move Kevin Martin into the starting lineup, move Tayshaun Prince to the bench and ratchet up Shabazz Muhammad’s minutes.

“It was never my mentality for Tayshaun to play this amount of minutes,” Mitchell said of Prince, who has started and averaged 22.2 minutes, 3.2 points and 2.5 rebounds per game. “It was just to get us off to a start. I need to increase Bazz’s minutes. He’s been playing well. So I’m going to decrease Tayshaun’s minutes.”

Derrick Rose hopes to return Tuesday

Chicago Bulls (8-4) point guard Derrick Rose is averaging 13.6 points, and 6.0 assists per game this season, on pretty awful shooting: 37.7% FG and 15.0% 3FG. Here’s with the latest:

Derrick Rose hopes to return Tuesday

Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose is hopeful that he will be able to play Tuesday against the Portland Trail Blazers after missing the last two games because of a sprained left ankle.

“I feel good,” Rose said after Sunday’s practice. “My body was a little fatigued from just running around or just sitting down for a little time. Being able to run around today, and I had a great workout [Saturday] and I had another workout today after we got done practicing so I’m heading in the right direction … that’s what I’m aiming for, Tuesday, for sure.

Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg seemed encouraged by what Rose was able to do during Sunday’s practice.

The Chicago Bulls announced today the team has assigned forward Cameron Bairstow to the Austin Spurs of the NBA Development League, pursuant to the Flexible Assignment Rule.

Bairstow (6-9, 259) has appeared in two games for the Bulls this season, averaging 1.0 points and 1.5 rebounds in 5.0 minutes per game.

The Chicago Bulls are off to an impressive 8-4 season start, and they’re doing so with center Joakim Noah now being used as a backup. Coming off the bench for all 11 games he’s played this season, Noah is averaging 2.5 ppg, 8.4 rpg with 3.5 apg in 20.5 minutes per outing. Very good rebounding and assist numbers per minute, but still overall a quiet season for a player who was previously one of the best centers in the league. Here’s the blog reporting:

Joakim Noah having quiet season for Bulls

Because Noah Friday in 17 minutes had his fifth scoreless game of the season; he has yet to score in double figures in any game despite averaging in double figures in five of his first eight Bulls seasons. He’s had fewer than five points in all but two games.

Noah is averaging a career low 2.5 points per game along with 8.4 rebounds. He’s shooting, the rare times he does, a career low 31.6 percent and 30.8 percent on free throws for a career 71 percent free throw shooter, likely a lifetime low. He’s at a seven-year low in rebounding and career lows in blocks and minutes played and the first season in his career, at least thus far, he hasn’t started a game.

Well, he does say he has his health.

“Physically, I feel good,” Noah insisted. “Now it’s trying to figure out where I can get opportunities offensively and just helping the defense. That’s it. I’ve to be more aggressive when I get my opportunities. There are less. But I’ve still got to still figure it out. It’s tough. Just trying to figure it out; keep working. But it’s definitely an adjustment. I feel like I’m rushing a little bit. I’m making too many turnovers. I like to help the team win. I wasn’t able to do that.”

The Orlando Magic are 6-7 this season, and getting double-digit scoring from Evan Fournier, Nikola Vucevic, Tobias Harris, Victor Oladipo and Elfrid Payton. Rookie shooting guard Mario Hezonja is playing just 14.5 minutes per game, good for 4.8 ppg. Here’s the Orlando Sentinel reporting:

Magic rookie Mario Hezonja still learning the ropes

Hezonja has shown tantalizing glimpses of the potential that prompted the Magic to select him fifth overall in the 2015 NBA Draft, but his rookie mistakes on the defensive end and a logjam of other talented wing players are reducing his playing time. Coaches review tape with Hezonja almost daily in an attempt to cut down on his errors.

By all accounts, Hezonja, a 6-foot-8 swingman, has been an eager student.

“It’s a team sport, so I’m looking forward to help the team the best that I can and, of course, [I’m] individually looking to improve because I’m here to play,” he said after he played almost 17 minutes in the Magic’s 97-91 loss Saturday night to the Sacramento Kings.

The Dallas Mavericks are off to a terrific start this season, boasting a 9-4 record. New point guard Deron Williams, contributing 13.8 points and 5.6 assists per game on 43.3% shooting, still isn’t the star he was years ago, but he’s fitting in and a key part of the team’s success. Here’s the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reporting:

Deron Williams playing well for Mavericks

With Monta Ellis now playing for the Indiana Pacers and Dirk Nowitzki getting up there in age, the Dallas Mavericks knew they had to find themselves another go-to guy over the offseason.

They definitely found one in Deron Williams.

Signed to a two-year, $11 million free agent contract over the summer, Williams showed another sign Friday night against the Utah Jazz why he can be trusted with the ball with the game on the line. With the Jazz closing in on the Mavs, Williams nailed a 3-point basket to pad the Mavs’ lead to 95-87 with two minutes left.

A pair of free throws by Williams gave Dallas a 100-91 lead with 1:05 left and prevented any chances the Jazz had of making a valiant comeback.

The Mavs went on to win their sixth consecutive game, 102-93, and are now 9-4 on the year. And a lot of the credit goes to Williams, who is now feeling more and more comfortable being the Mavs’ go-to guy down the stretch.

Kobe Bryant plays season-high 37 minutes

The Los Angeles Lakers are 2-10 so far in what may turn out to be the final NBA season of Kobe Bryant’s career. And Kobe is struggling along with the entire team, scoring a team-high 16.1 ppg but on miserable 34.0% shooting. Here’s the Los Angeles Daily News blog reporting:

The concern made Kobe Bryant roll his eyes.

The Lakers’ 37-year-old star posted only 10 points on 5-of-13 shooting, five assists and four rebounds in the Lakers’ 102-91 loss to the Toronto Raptors on Friday at Staples Center. But the most glaring number involved his 37 minutes.

It marked the second consecutive game he played above last year’s season’s average of 34.5 minutes. It marked the second consecutive season Bryant became shrouded in controversy surrounding the minutes he played. So after lasting only 35 games last season before needing season-ending right shoulder surgery, what implications could Bryant’s heavier workload bring to his 37-year-old body?

“That’s the silliest question of the night,” Bryant said. “This is literally my second game where I played 35 minutes or more, so it’s premature to ask about it.”

Warriors trying to make history

Here’s CSN Bay Area reporting on the 14-0 Golden State Warriors, who after winning the championship last season are on an amazing roll in 2015-16 and are the talk of basketball right now:

Warriors trying to make history

There was nothing from the Warriors after winning 10 in a row, nothing after 12 either. They held the company line: One game at a time. And: Next game is all that matters.

But Friday night, after winning their 14th consecutive game, the Warriors made no such attempts to avoid the subject on the tips of tongues throughout the NBA. They openly talked about The Streak, and about becoming the first team in NBA history to win 16 consecutive games. They embraced the subject.

“At this point, you do,” forward Draymond Green said. “Because all you’re doing now is thinking about one game, which you have to do anyway.”

The next game is Sunday at Denver. A win over the Nuggets would put the Warriors in a three-way tie with the 1993-94 Houston Rockets and the 1948-49 Washington Capitols for most wins to begin a season.

Here’s Michigan Live reporting on the Detroit Pistons point guards, who did something impressive yesterday against the Minnesota Timberwolves:

No turnovers for Pistons point guards vs Timberwolves

It wasn’t really perfect. There just weren’t any imperfections in the category reserved for imperfections.

Reggie Jackson played 28 minutes and Spencer Dinwiddie 20 minutes for the Detroit Pistons on Friday night. The two point guards combined for 24 points and seven assists.

And they did not commit a turnover, which was central to the Pistons’ 96-86 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves.

It was the first turnover-free game by Pistons point guards this season.

The Golden State Warriors are 14-0 and chasing history, and didn’t let the Chicago Bulls get in their way. Here’s the blog:

There is a method to that madness that has become Jimmy Butler’s life, the multiple workouts per day, starting basically every morning at 5 and pounding away.

“I want to give us the best chance of winning,” Butler was saying in Oakland late Friday night. “That’s why I train as many times as I train per day, as early as I wake up; to make my body tired and still be able to perform at the highest level.”

Butler did all he could with a decimated backcourt with Derrick Rose out with a sprained ankle and Aaron Brooks with a hamstring strain. Butler in a game high 39 minutes outscored Stephen Curry with 28 points. His nine rebounds matched the Golden State Warriors’ leader. His seven assists were a game high for both teams. But in the end, even with the Bulls trailing 94-91 with under two minutes left after Butler made the Bulls last field goal, it wasn’t enough to subdue the league’s best team as the Warriors finally put the Bulls in their rear view mirror and pulled away to a 106-94 victory.

“First of all, I thought we really competed,” said Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg. “We battled, battled them the whole game. They made a couple of big plays down the stretch. We couldn’t get it back on the other end. But if we battle like that we’re going to win a lot of basketball games this year. We wanted to hold them to 10 threes or under. We did it. (Harrison) Barnes (with 20 points) hitting the two big ones there at the end (turning a four-point Warriors lead with 1:15 left into doubles figures in seconds). We took care of the ball. We didn’t give them a lot of run outs off of turnovers and that was a big goal of ours as well. We didn’t attack well enough down the stretch. But again, you play with that kind of effort we’re going to be fine.”

And here’s CSN Chicago with more on last night’s game:

Through 42 minutes it was hard to tell which was the better team, at least until Golden State’s deadly lineup finished the night by not allowing the Bulls to get anything going offensively in the last half of the fourth.

But the Warriors’ offensive rebounding was an Achilles’ heel, giving up 15 as Draymond Green came up with more than his share of loose balls, producing an effect that went beyond his nine-point, nine-rebound night.

“Yeah, loose balls,” Hoiberg said. “Draymond Green, he’s a horse in there. He does a great job watching his body, getting in there for extra ones. Those loose balls, you’ve got to find a way to come up with those.”

Jonas Valanciunas injured in Raptors win

Here’s the Toronto Star reporting good news but also bad news on the 8-6 Raptors, who center Jonas Valanciunas is averaging 12.7 ppg and 9.3 rpg in 27.3 minutes per game this season:

Jonas Valanciunas injured in Raptors win

Big win. Big loss.

Unleashing a barrage of three-point shots against a woefully inept opponent, the Raptors snapped a three-game losing streak with a 102-91 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night but the victory came at a substantial cost.

Jonas Valanciunas could be lost for a substantial stretch after suffering a broken finger on his left hand when he was fouled by Kobe Bryant driving to the basket in the final minute of the second quarter.

The team said he suffered a fractured finger on his left, non-shooting hand and that he will have further testing before any timeline for rehabilitation or a return is offered.

Hawks face Cavs on Saturday

Two of the best teams in the Eastern conference face off on Saturday. Here’s the Atlanta Journal Constitution reporting:

The Cavaliers (9-3) lead the Eastern Conference, with the Hawks (9-5) in third place early in the new season. The Cavaliers are not going anywhere, it would appear. LeBron James carried them last season, and he could very well do it again.

The Hawks will face the Cavaliers without one, and possibly two, starters. Small forward Kent Bazemore (right ankle sprain) has been ruled out. Point guard Jeff Teague (left ankle sprain) is questionable.

The Cavaliers are injured themselves. Point guard Kyrie Irving (fractured left kneecap), guard Iman Shumpert (injured forearm), center Timofey Mozgov (right shoulder sprain) and guard Mo Williams (right lower leg soreness) all will not play. With Mozgov out, Tristan Thompson may start at center. He gave the Hawks fits in the postseason.

“Taking care of the defensive boards is something that is going to be important,” Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said.

No home wins for Timberwolves yet

Here’s the Minneapolis Star Tribune reporting on the Timberwolves, who haven’t won a home game yet and host the Detroit Pistons tonight:

One thing becomes clear after talking with a few Timberwolves players after today’s morning shootaround:

This team wants very much to end this zero-for-home thing. The Wolves enter tonight’s game with Detroit at Target Center at 5-7 overall, with all five victories coming on the road. At home the team is 0-5 at home. And while both emotions and injuries might have played into that, it has gotten old quickly.

“I hope tonight is the night,” Andrew Wiggins said.

The Pistons come into the game with an impressive victory over Cleveland Tuesday, a victory that ended a four-game losing streak. That came after Detroit started the season 5-1.

Center Timofey Mozgov experienced a strained right deltoid during the second quarter of last night’s game against Milwaukee at The Q. Additional examination and MRI today at Cleveland Clinic Sports Health confirmed the strain. Mozgov will be OUT approximately 10 days to two weeks.

Guard Mo Williams missed last night’s game vs the Bucks and received additional examination and MRI today at Cleveland Clinic Sports Health, which showed posterior right ankle inflammation, along with continued soreness. He is listed as OUT for tomorrow’s game at The Q against Atlanta and doubtful for Monday’s contest vs. Orlando, also at The Q.

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