Archive for April 23rd, 2008

InsideHoops talks with Darrell Armstrong

The New Jersey Nets finished the 2007-08 regular season with 34 wins and 48 losses, failing to make the NBA playoffs. Veteran point guard Darrell Armstrong, whose pro career began in 1994, played 11.0 minutes per game as a backup. While his stats are low, his leadership drive is high. contributor Randy Zellea recently met with Armstrong for an exclusive interview.

Read it here.

Apr. 23: Celtics 96, Hawks 77

The AP reports: Rajon Rondo outplayed Mike Bibby and helped the Boston Celtics silence Atlanta and its blustery point guard. Kevin Garnett had 19 points and 10 rebounds, and Rondo added 12 points, eight assists and six rebounds to lead Boston to a 96-77 victory over Atlanta on Wednesday night and a 2-0 lead in the first-round series. Paul Pierce returned from a first-quarter knockdown to score 14 points, and Kendrick Perkins added eight points and nine rebounds for the Celtics. Josh Smith, who helped take Pierce down and appeared to land on him and roll over his head, had 13 points and eight rebounds for Atlanta. But it was Bibby, who called the locals fair-weather fans during the week, who drew the ire of the sold-out Boston Garden crowd… The Hawks came out feisty and physical. Just 82 seconds in, Joe Johnson fouled Pierce to keep him from an easy layup. Smith came in from the side and slammed Pierce to the floor and landed on top of his chest before rolling over his head. Notes: Bibby shot 2-of-7 for 12 points and just one assists. The entire Hawks team had just 10 assists, while the Celtics had 23. The Celtics had 15 steals, the Hawks just 4. The Hawks didn’t hit a single three-pointer.

Apr. 23: Pistons 105, Sixers 88

The AP reports: The Detroit Pistons looked a lot like the team that reached the last five Eastern Conference finals. Rasheed Wallace scored 11 of his 16 points in the first quarter and had plenty of help at both ends of the court in a 105-88 series-evening victory over the Philadelphia 76ers in Game 2 on Wednesday night… Wallace was one of four Pistons scoring in double figures as they took a 17-point halftime lead, while the 76ers had only Andre Miller, who scored 11 of his 14 points in the first half… Richard Hamilton finished with 20 points and seven assists, Tayshaun Prince and Antonio McDyess both added 16 points and rookie Rodney Stuckey had 12 after being held scoreless in his playoff debut… Philadelphia reserves Louis Williams (17), Reggie Evans (13) and Rodney Carney (11) all scored career playoff highs. Stat Notes: The Pistons shot 54.9%, the Sixers just 39.5%. Both teams struggled from three-point range but the Sixers were worse at just 1-for-6. The Sixers got 35 free throw attempts but only hit 23, while the Pistons went 11-of-15. The Pistons dished 26 assists, the Sixers just 12.

CP3 is owning J-Kidd

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Jeff Caplan) reports on the first two games of the Hornets-Mavericks first round playoff series: Jason Kidd, the veteran playmaker the Mavs acquired in February to better compete in the playoffs, has been a non-factor offensively and has struggled defensively to hang with Hornets point guard Chris Paul. “I have to do what I do best,” Kidd said. “I have to try to control the tempo and somehow try to get my fingerprints on the next 48 minutes of the game.” Kidd finished the Game 2 debacle with seven points on 3-of-10 shooting and eight assists. His younger counterpart shined again with 32 points and 17 assists. In the two games, Paul has outscored Kidd 67-18 and has dished 10 more assists. “We have to look at the defensive side first before we look at the offensive side,” Kidd said. “We have to get stops.”

Bulls mascot sued for errant high five

The AP reports: An errant high five has prompted a dentist to sue the Chicago Bulls for the actions of mascot Benny the Bull. Don Kalant is alleging in the lawsuit filed Monday that he raised his hand to get a high-five from Barry Anderson, who plays the mascot. But instead of slapping Kalant’s palm on February 12th, Anderson grabbed his arm as he fell forward, hyperextending Kalant’s arm and rupturing his biceps muscle.

Apr. 22: Spurs 102, Suns 96

The AP reports: Tony Parker scored 32 points to lead the Spurs to a 102-96 victory in Game 2 on Tuesday night after the Suns gave away another double-digit, first-half lead… On Tuesday, the Spurs were down by as many as 14 in the first half before outscoring Phoenix 27-11 in a breakout third quarter… Amare Stoudemire led the Suns with 33 points but struggled after halftime, when he shot 2-of-11 from the field. The Spurs went up by as many as 17 points in the fourth quarter after taking control in the third. But Steve Nash led a 10-0 run to bring Phoenix within 96-91 with 2:44 left on the clock… Tim Duncan, who finished with 18 points and 17 rebounds, had a monster dunk with 1:47 to play and Parker followed with a bucket to put San Antonio back up 101-93… Nash had 23 points and 10 assists for the Suns. Shaquille O’Neal had 19 points and 14 rebounds. Manu Ginobili, who won the NBA’s sixth man award on Monday, scored 29 points for San Antonio.

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