Rob Swift out another month

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reports: The Sonics weren’t counting on Robert Swift for big things in the early season, and they found out this week that the fourth-year center likely will miss another month with knee tendinitis and plantar fasciitis. Swift, who will turn 22 on Monday, has played in just five of the Sonics’ 16 games because of soreness in his surgically repaired right knee. Sonics coach P.J. Carlesimo said Friday morning that Swift had his knee examined by Lakers team doctor Stephen Lombardo, who performed the anterior cruciate ligament surgery a year ago.

Glancing at the Bucks

Bucks notes:

The Bucks are 7-6 and tonight in New York will start Mo Williams and Michael Redd at guard, Desmond Mason and Yi Jianlian at forward, and Andrew Bogut at center. The usual crew. Michael Ruffin remains out with a left wrist fracture.

Early in November the Bucks assigned Ramon Sessions to the team’s D-League affiliate, the Tulsa 66ers.

Mo Williams went a perfect 9-of-9 for 23 points in Atlanta on Wednesday. Over the last seven games he’s close to averaging a double-double with 16.4 points and 9.7 assists per game.

Andrew Bogut has six double-doubles, the most of any Bucks player. on Tuesday he stepped up with 18 points, 11 rebounds and 4 blocks.

Tonight, in New York, the Bucks begin their fourth back-to-back set of games so far this season.

It’s a block party when the Bucks play. They’re 3rd in the league with 5.6 blocks per game. They’re led by Bogut’s 2.2 bpg, which is 7th in the league.

Bucks star shooting guard Michael Redd now has 9,274 career points. He’s only 16 points behind Terry Cummings for 9th all-time in Bucks history. Redd has led the team in scoring 11 of their 13 games so far in 2007-08.

Three games ago the Bucks beat Dallas by two points. But their last two games were losses to the 76ers and Hawks, two of the weakest teams in the league.

In 7 home games this season the Bucks have averaged 15,332 fans per game. They’ve had one home sellout. And home is where the Bucks have succeeded. They’re 6-1 in their own building and just 1-5 on the road.

NBA denies Mavs protest

The NBA today denied a game protest filed by the Dallas Mavericks over their 111-107 loss to the Indiana Pacers on November 23.

The Mavericks filed the protest because a basket by Indiana’s Troy Murphy with 9:59 remaining in the second quarter was mistakenly recorded as a 3-point field goal instead of a 2-point field goal (making the score 41-25 in Indiana’s favor), and the Mavericks contended that this extra point had a clear impact on the outcome of the game.

The NBA’s review confirmed that Murphy’s shot was mistakenly recorded; the Official Scorer erroneously believed that one or more referees had given the signal for a 3-point field goal. In fact, no referee made such a signal, nor was any referee aware until after the game that the Official Scorer had awarded 3 points to Indiana as a result of Murphy’s shot.

Although he concluded that an inadvertent error was made by the Official Scorer, NBA Commissioner David Stern determined that it did not have such a clear impact on the outcome of the game that a replay of the contest should be ordered. Murphy’s shot occurred with almost 34 minutes of regulation time remaining in the game, providing Dallas with a substantial opportunity to overcome the 1-point error. Dallas lost the game by four points.

Although NBA rules would have allowed the game officials to correct the scoring error at any time prior to the end of the game, it was not brought to their attention until after the game.

Spurs assign Darius Washington to D-League

The San Antonio Spurs announced today that they have assigned guard Darius Washington to the Austin Toros of the NBA Development League (D-League).

The 6-2, 195-pound Washington has appeared in 15 games for the Spurs, averaging 2.8 points and 1.10 rebounds in 7.5 minutes per contest.  He finished with a season-high 11 points on 4-of-6 shooting vs. Milwaukee on Nov. 11.

The University of Memphis product was signed by San Antonio as a free agent on October 1.

Washington is the second player – Ian Mahinmi was assigned on 11/21 – the Spurs have assigned to the Toros since Spurs Sports & Entertainment purchased the Austin franchise on June 28, 2007.

Celtics domination at home

NBA News: At an NBA-best 11-2, the Boston Celtics are off to one of the best starts in franchise history. They opened the season 8-0 — the fourth best start for this storied organization — and have yet to lose at TD Banknorth Garden, where they are 7-0. The Celtics, not only will look to remain perfect at home tonight when they host the New Knicks on national TV (8 p.m. ET, TNT), they’ll go for a knockout punch.

Boston has outscored its opponents at home by an average of 18.3 points, the highest point-differential in the league. The Utah Jazz ranks second in that category (16.7), followed by the San Antonio Spurs (14.1), the Denver Nuggets (13.5), and the Detroit Pistons (11.2).

At home, the Celtics are out-rebounding teams by an average of 6.4; dishing out 10.6 more assists; recording 10.6 steals per game compared to 7.9 for the opposition; and shooting .525 from the field, while holding teams to under 40 percent (.398).

Perhaps the most significant reason for the Celtics’ dominance at home has been how seamlessly Kevin Garnett has acclimated to his new surroundings. His averages at home include 22.1 points, 13.1 rebounds and 4.3 assists, and he’s shooting a blistering .604 from the field and .871 from the free throw line. His road averages are 19.2 points, 10.8 rebounds and 4.2 assists, and his percentages from the field and charity stripe are .511 and .806, respectively.

Phil Jackson Lakers extension

Lakers coach Phil Jackson has made a decision on his future. The Los Angeles Times reports:

Coach Phil Jackson has decided to sign a contract extension that keeps him with the Lakers for two more seasons. Jackson met Wednesday with Jerry Buss and informed the Lakers owner of his decision. Jackson, 62, will get a modest raise from the three-year, $30-million contract he signed in June 2005, which was the richest per-annum coaching deal in U.S. pro sports history. Jackson is expected to make $11 million or $12 million a season in his new deal.

It’ll be interesting to see what type of roster changes the team makes this season and summer.

Pat Riley statement on accusation against Smush Parker

Pat Riley made a statement today on Smush Parker: “We are currently investigating the reported incident. Until we have concluded it, Smush will not be with the team. He has not been suspended and is currently on our inactive list. This is a legal matter and we will have no further comment until the legal process runs its course.”

The statement is in response to the following, as reported by the Miami Herald:

A Miami woman accusing Heat guard Smush Parker of twisting her arm during a dispute over a valet fee is seeking criminal charges against the five-year NBA player. Yomaira McKenzie, 41, said Parker ”lost it” Tuesday morning when he was asked to pay the $12 valet parking charge he allegedly owed at a condo building at 355 Biscayne Blvd. McKenzie is an assistant manager at Standard Valet, which services the building. According to a Miami police incident report, Parker, 26, claimed he had paid the fee in advance a night earlier. He said he did not have any available cash to pay Tuesday. Tension apparently escalated when Parker, denied his keys until he settled the debt, allegedly pushed a valet podium and grabbed McKenzie’s arm in an attempt to get his keys, according to the incident report. Parker was not arrested or charged at the scene Tuesday, which is standard procedure in most simple misdemeanor battery cases that aren’t witnessed by police.

Remember, it’s just an accusation. Parker’s innocent, until proven otherwise.

Nuggets sign Jelani McCoy

The Denver Nuggets have signed F/C Jelani McCoy. He’s 6-10, 245 pounds and comes from the D-League’s Los Angeles D-Fenders team. The Nuggets have injuries up front and needed some extra size. They recently cut Mike Wilks.

McCoy is a pretty good player and I think he belongs in the league, towards the end of a bench, but with a legit deal.

Hit for more details about the transactions.

Suns assign Alando Tucker to D-League

The Phoenix Suns have assigned rookie forward Alando Tucker to their NBA Development League affiliate Albuquerque Thunderbirds, it was announced today by Suns President of Basketball Operations and General Manager Steve Kerr.

The 29th overall selection in the 2007 NBA Draft, Tucker has made appearances in two games for Phoenix this season, averaging 6.0 points and 1.0 rebounds in 8.0 minutes of action.  A product of the University of Wisconsin, Tucker finished his college career as the all-time leading scorer with 2,217 points, averaging 16.5 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 134 games.  During his senior season he earned Big Ten Player of the Year and was named First-Team All-American by the Associated Press.

Tucker is the record-setting 12th NBA player assigned to the D-League this season.  On this date last year there had been a total of three players assigned to the D-League, while in 2005-06 there were eight players assigned to the NBA Development League at this point.

Tucker joins an Albuquerque squad with a 2-1 record on the season, coached by 1984 NBA All-Star Jeff Ruland and features 2004 NBA champion Darvin Ham.

Matt Barnes’ mother dies

The San Jose Mercury News reports: Ann Barnes, mother of the Warriors’ Matt Barnes, died Tuesday after battling cancer. Matt has apparently told the Warriors that he wants to play tonight in Sacramento, which is home for him and is where he returned to be with his mother often over the last few fateful weeks. I can’t say anything more than his teammates have already said: They’re with him, they support him, they want whatever’s best for him.