Archive for March 5th, 2008

Chicago Bulls Vice President of Basketball Operations John Paxson has levied a two-game suspension on second-year forward Tyrus Thomas for an unexcused absence from practice today. Thomas will serve the suspension during Chicago’s next two games, sitting out versus Cleveland tomorrow night at the United Center and at Boston on Friday.
Thomas (6-9, 215) has appeared in 54 games, including 17 starts, and averaged 6.3 ppg, 4.6 rpg and 1.2 apg in 17.3 mpg. He has also shot .412 from the field and .729 from the free throw line.

Scot Pollard out for season

The Boston Globe (Marc Spears) reports: Celtics forward/center Scot Pollard said before tonight’s game against the Detroit Pistons that he will be out for the rest of the season with a torn tendon in his left ankle. Pollard has had a lingering left ankle injury since October that hasn’t healed. The original injury revealed a slight tear that became a lot worse as shown on an MRI today, Pollard said.

Dirk Nowitzki of the Dallas Mavericks has been suspended one game without pay, and his Flagrant Foul, Penalty One against Andrei Kirilenko of the Utah Jazz has been upgraded to a Flagrant Foul, Penalty Two, it was announced today by Stu Jackson, NBA Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations.

The incident occurred with 7:04 remaining in the first period of the Mavericks’ 116-110 loss to the Jazz on Monday, March 3 at EnergySolutions Arena.

Nowitzki will serve his suspension when the Mavericks host the Houston Rockets Thursday, March 6 at American Airlines Center.

Some positive-slanted Pacers notes

In the Pacers’ two wins last week, Mike Dunleavy scored a career-high tying 36 points in each game. That is the first time that a Pacers’ player has scored 30+ points in consecutive game since Jermaine O’Neal did so in four straight games during the 2004-05 season. In the game at Toronto, Feb. 29, Dunleavy tied a career-high with six 3-pt field goals–his most ever with the Pacers.

In the last three games of this past week the Pacers averaged 36.3 free throw attempts per game and outscored the opposition, 88-58, from the line. Through the first 57 games, the Pacers averaged just 24.0 free throw attempts per game and had been outscored, 1,347-1,053, at the line.

When the Pacers scored 122 points at Toronto last Friday and followed that up with a season-high 128 points vs. the Bucks Sunday, they scored 120+ points in consecutive games for the first time since 1993.

With just six more 3-pt field goals made this season, Kareem Rush will become the third Pacers’ player to have hit 100 or more this season. That will be the first time in franchise history that three players have ever hit 100 or more 3-pt field goals in the same season.

With 10 steals and just nine turnovers vs. the Bucks on Sunday, Mar. 2, the Pacers had more thefts than turnovers for the first time this season. Indiana has averaged 12.0 turnovers per game in the last 15 games, compared to an average of 16.69 topg in its first 45 games.

Bucks to honor Brian Winters March 18

On Tuesday, March 18, during halftime of the Bucks/Heat game at the Bradley Center, the Milwaukee Bucks will continue their season-long, 40th anniversary celebration of the greatest players to ever put on a Bucks uniform when they honor Brian Winters and re-dedicate his #32 retired jersey banner. The ceremony will be the fifth of the season so far: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – Nov 21; Sidney Moncrief – Jan 19; Junior Bridgeman – Feb 9; Bob Lanier – February 20.

Winters joined the Bucks in 1975 from the Lakers along with Junior Bridgeman, David Meyers and Elmore Smith in exchange for Karee Abdul-Jabbar and Walt Wesley. The South Carolina alum went on to play eight seasons in Milwaukee and averaged 16.7 points, 2.7 rebounds and 4.3 assists throughout his 582 games wearing his #32 Bucks jersey.

An All-Rookie selection with the Lakers, Winters was an All-Star in his first season in Milwaukee when he averaged 18.3 points, 3.2 rebounds and 4.7 assists. He was also an All-Star in 1978 with averages of 19.9 points, 3.1 rebounds and 4.9 assists. His 19.9 points and 4.9 assists that year were both career-highs. Winters had his share of individual success, but the Bucks also advanced to the postseason in six of his eight seasons with the squad.

Winters still ranks among the franchise leaders in points (9,743, eighth), field goals (4,131, sixth), games (582, fifth), assists (2,479, third), minutes (18,422, fifth), steals (718, fifth), free throw percentage (.843, ninth) and three-point field goal percentage (.363, tenth). One of the league’s best shooters during his playing days, Winters’ numbers probably would’ve been boosted had he had the three-point line his entire career. It came into existence after he had been in the league for five seasons.

Winters’ #32 was originally retired on October 28, 1983.

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