Archive for April 17th, 2008

Pistons finish first in attendance

The Detroit Free Press reports: The Pistons went 34-7 this season at home, but went 41-0 in sellouts. For the fifth time in six seasons, the Pistons are the attendance champs in the NBA. With 41 straight sell-outs and an average of 22,076 per game, the Pistons hosted 905,116 fans during the 2007-08 regular season.

Okur not getting suspended

The Houston Chronicle reports: Jazz center Mehmet Okur was charged with a flagrant-1 foul of San Antonio Spurs center Fabricio Oberto on Wednesday. The play could have been subject to league review and, if upgraded to a flagrant-2, would have netted a one-game suspension. The NBA quickly ruled, however, that the foul will remain a flagrant-1 penalty, NBA spokesman Tim Frank said.

Kevin Love going pro

The AP reports: Kevin Love led the Bruins in scoring (17.5 points) and rebounds (10.6) on the way to a 35-win season and a trip to the Final Four, where UCLA lost to Memphis. Scouts have projected Love to be a top-10 pick in the June 26 draft, according to his coach Ben Howland.

The Portland Trail Blazers today re-assigned rookie forward Josh McRoberts to their NBA Development League affiliate, the Idaho Stampede, it was announced by Trail Blazers General Manager Kevin Pritchard. McRoberts was previously on assignment with Idaho from Jan. 9-Feb. 3 and from March 17-April 7.  

During his first two stints in Idaho, McRoberts averaged 7.7 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 26.8 minutes in 15 games with the Stampede.  This season in the NBA, McRoberts is averaging 1.5 points, 1.3 rebounds and 3.5 minutes in five games with the Trail Blazers.  

Originally selected in the second round (37th overall) of the 2007 NBA Draft, McRoberts played two seasons at Duke, where he averaged 10.8 points, 6.5 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 69 games.  

McRoberts is scheduled to re-join the Stampede on Friday, April 18, when the hosts the Los Angeles D-Fenders in the second round of the 2008 D-League playoffs.  Tip off is set for 9:30 p.m. ET.

Bulls relieve coach Jim Boylan

Chicago Bulls Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations John Paxson issued the following statement regarding the team’s decision to relieve Interim Head Coach Jim Boylan today:
 
“Letting a coach go is never easy. Jim was put in a difficult position on Dec. 27, without the luxury of having a training camp and with some of the issues that arose during his time as head coach. I think during the time he coached this year, Jim showed he is very capable in that role and I hope he gets that opportunity again in the future. He certainly has the tools it takes to succeed at this level. I want to thank Jim for accepting the challenge during a difficult year and I wish him all the best.”
 
Boylan, 52, took over the head coaching duties on an interim basis on Dec. 27, 2007, and directed the Bulls to a 24-32 (.429) record in his 56 games at the helm. He spent four seasons with the franchise after being hired as an Assistant Coach on May 19, 2004. The 2007-08 season was Boylan’s 15th in the NBA as a coach, having also spent time on the sidelines in Cleveland under Mike Fratello (1993-97), Vancouver under Brian Hill (1997-2000), Phoenix under Scott Skiles (2000-01) and Atlanta under Terry Stotts (2003-04). He began his coaching career in the NBA in 1992 as Video Coordinator and Advance Scout for Hall of Famer Lenny Wilkens’ Cavaliers. He also coached in the Continental Basketball Association and in college, including stops at Michigan State as an assistant under Jud Heathcote (1986-89) and as head coach at New Hampshire (1989-92).
 
As a player, Boylan helped lead the Marquette Warriors to the 1977 NCAA Championship and was later drafted by the Buffalo Braves in the fourth round (68th overall) of the 1979 NBA Draft.

Bucks fire coach Larry Krystkowiak

The Milwaukee Bucks today relieved Larry Krystkowiak of his head coaching duties, General Manager John Hammond announced.  The decision was made after Hammond met with Krystkowiak Thursday morning at the Bucks Training Center in St. Francis, WI.  The search for the Bucks new head coach begins immediately. 

“Larry Krystkowiak is a good man who worked very hard for the Milwaukee Bucks,” said Hammond.  “Sometimes despite even the best efforts, the results don’t end up how we want them.  At this time, I feel it is in the best interest of our franchise to make a change at the head coaching position.  I want to thank Larry for his hard work and dedication to our team, and our entire organization wishes him and his family well.”

In less than two seasons as head coach of the Bucks, Krystkowiak compiled a 31-69 record (.310).  He was named head coach on March 14, 2007, replacing Terry Stotts.

Krystkowiak was originally hired by the Bucks on June 22, 2006, as an assistant coach to Stotts.  He came to Milwaukee following two seasons as the head coach at his alma mater, the University of Montana.  He led the Grizzlies to a 42-20 record during those two campaigns and won back-to-back Big Sky Conference Tournaments.  He also guided his Montana squad to two straight NCAA Tournament appearances, including a first-round upset over Nevada in the 2006 NCAA Tournament. 
Krystkowiak’s coaching resume also includes a one-year stint as head coach of the Idaho Stampede (CBA), where he guided his team to a franchise-best 37-16 record during the 2003-04 season. 

He has also spent time as an assistant coach at Norfolk Collegiate High School in Virginia (2002-03), at Old Dominion (2001-02), and at Montana (1998-2000).

Drafted by Chicago in 1986, Krystkowiak played in nine NBA seasons, including four with the Milwaukee Bucks (he spent five seasons in Milwaukee from 1987-92, but was injured during the 1990-91 season).  He averaged 9.8 points and 6.0 rebounds in 225 career games with Milwaukee.  He also played for San Antonio, Utah, Orlando, Chicago and the Los Angeles Lakers, averaging 8.2 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 420 career NBA games.
He remains Montana’s all-time leader in points (2,017) and rebounds (1,105) after playing four years for the Grizzlies from 1982-86.  In 1989, he became the only player in men’s basketball history at Montana to have his number (42) retired.

Saer Sene has right knee surgery

Seattle SuperSonics General Manager Sam Presti announced today, second-year center Mouhamed Sene had surgery this past Monday (April 14) to repair a lateral meniscus tear in his right knee. During the surgery, doctors discovered a chondral defect which required microfracture surgery.

Sene will be on crutches for six weeks and will be continually evaluated.

The injury was originally suffered during an Idaho Stampede game at Bakersfield of the NBA Development League on April 4.
 
Sene appeared in 13 games for the Sonics this season, averaging 2.3 points and 1.2 rebounds in 4.8 minutes per contest. Sene also appeared in 27 games for the Idaho Stampede this season, averaging 12.1 points and 8.9 rebounds in 27.5 minutes per game.

The 10th overall pick in the 2006 NBA Draft, Sene has appeared in 41 regular season games in his two seasons with the Sonics and holds career averages of 2.0 points and 1.2 rebounds.

The Akron Beacon Journal (Brian Windhorst) reports: It became official Wednesday. LeBron James became the first player in franchise history to win the NBA scoring title by averaging exactly 30.0 points. It was not a surprise. He grabbed the scoring lead in November and held it the rest of the way. It was not the highest scoring average of his career, though. He averaged 31.4 points per game in 2005-06. By combining it with averages of 7.9 rebounds, which was a career high, and 7.2 assists, which tied a career high, James became just the third player in NBA history to average 30 points, seven rebounds and seven assists in league history. The other two were Oscar Robertson and Michael Jordan.

Jamario Moon a nice story for Raptors

The Toronto Star (Doug Smith) reports: The regular season ended where it really began for Jamario Moon, his season a surprising rise from obscurity to a starting NBA job on a playoff-bound team. A season few, if any, saw coming. And as he prepares for that playoff debut, he sees his true jumping off point as a start in a game here in early November. “I think after (that) game it was pretty much even throughout the whole season,” he said yesterday morning before the Raptors concluded the regular season with a 107-97 loss to the Chicago Bulls to finish with a 41-41 record. “I pretty much did the same thing – came out and brought energy, blocked shots, got steals, just got my hands on a lot of balls. “After I started (that) game, I just tried to come out and do the same thing every game.” Moon’s presence in the starting lineup has created the best feel-good story of a rocky season for the Raptors.

Mark Jackson leaving YES network

The New York post (Phil Mushnick) reports: Mark Jackson, the Nets’ popular YES analyst the last three seasons and a top candidate to become coach of the Knicks, hit YES with a farewell bomb last night when he announced on the air he would not be returning to call Net games… Jackson’s relationship with YES had been poor since Jackson, two seasons ago, rejoined ABC/ESPN, apparently without consulting YES.

First round playoff series schedules

InsideHoops has posted the complete, series-by-series, 2008 first round playoffs schedule.

Check it out here.

On Thursday we’ll post the day-by-day schedule.

InsideHoops.com is your home for the web’s best playoff coverage. We’ll post our own full coverage, and we’ll quote everything else from around the web worth reading. It’s all on InsideHoops in neat, easy-to-navigate, organized fashion.

Apr. 16: Sonics 126, Warriors 121

The AP reports: Kevin Durant set career highs with 42 points and 13 rebounds in his first professional double-double, and Jeff Green added 27 points to help the SuperSonics win what could have been their final game as a Seattle team, beating the Golden State Warriors 126-121 on Wednesday night. A strong season-ending performance by a pair of talented rookies would normally be a bright spot for fans of a lottery-bound team. But with the NBA Board of Governors set to vote later this week to approve the Sonics’ move to Oklahoma City after 41 years in the Emerald City, it’s unclear which fans will benefit… Baron Davis scored 21 points in 39 minutes after mysteriously being benched for the second half of Monday’s loss in Phoenix. Monta Ellis led the way with 24 points, Andris Biedrins had 20 points and 17 rebounds and rookie Marco Belinelli had a career-high 17 points.

Apr. 16: Suns 100, Blazers 91

The AP reports: Little-used Sean Marks had 16 points and 13 rebounds, and Phoenix beat the Portland Trail Blazers 100-91 on Wednesday night in a game that ended up having no bearing on the Suns’ playoff seeding… The Spurs led Utah by 26 at halftime, and it wasn’t long before D’Antoni sent in reserves D.J. Strawberry, followed by Marks, Alando Tucker and Eric Piatkowski. Marks’ 16 points matched a career high and his 13 rebounds set a career high. Steve Nash, Amare Stoudemire and Shaquille O’Neal didn’t play after halftime. Stoudemire finished with 12 points in 18 minutes, snapping his streak of consecutive 20-point games at 18 games, the third-longest in franchise history… Travis Outlaw scored 24 points and had 12 rebounds for Portland, which finished 41-41 and missed a chance for its first winning record since 2002-03.

Apr. 16: Spurs 109, Jazz 80

The AP reports: The San Antonio Spurs wrapped up the No. 3 seed in the Western Conference playoffs in dominant fashion, routing the Utah Jazz 109-80 on Wednesday night. The Spurs will face the sixth-seeded Phoenix Suns in the first round. The Jazz will take on the Houston Rockets… Tony Parker had 24 points and 12 assists for San Antonio in the easy win. Tim Duncan added 14 points and 11 rebounds, and four other Spurs scored in double digits. C.J. Miles led the Jazz with 12 points. Mehmet Okur scored 11 and Carlos Boozer had 10 rebounds… Utah guard Deron Williams, who shot 2-of-6 from the field in the first half, didn’t play in the second half. He bruised his tailbone Saturday against Denver.

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