Archive for November, 2008

Nov 29: Magic 110, Pacers 96

The AP reports: Dwight Howard had a season-high 32 points and 21 rebounds and added four blocks against the Pacers, who tried everything but shackles against the Magic center. It was his first 20-rebound performance this season and fourth time in his career that he had 30-plus points and 20-plus rebounds… Rashard Lewis finished 24 points, Turkoglu 22 and Johnson a season-high 16 for the Magic, who had a 14-point lead in the middle of the second quarter and were never seriously challenged in the second half… Danny Granger and Marquis Daniels tried to help the Pacers keep up with the Magic, but the Pacers could never get enough defensive stops to overcome the a 14-point second quarter and 22-point third quarter deficits. Granger finished with 27 points, Daniels had 21, Troy Murphy added 13 and Roy Hibbert had 10.

Nov 29: Celtics 89, Bobcats 84

The AP reports: With two NBA All-Stars as teammates, Paul Pierce knows he doesn’t have to shoulder the scoring load every game. Pierce was ready when coach Doc Rivers called on him in the Boston Celtics’ 89-84 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats on Saturday night. Pierce scored 19 points to lead six Boston players in double figures as the Celtics held off the Bobcats’ fourth-quarter rally to win their eighth consecutive game… Kendrick Perkins had 15 points and 12 rebounds, Allen added 15 points, Tony Allen had 11, and Eddie House and Garnett 10 each for the defending NBA champions, who improved to 16-2 despite playing their sixth back-to-back series this month… Gerald Wallace scored 23 points, Jason Richardson had 22, and rookie D.J. Augustin 13 for the Bobcats. Charlotte shot 47.8 percent and outrebounded Boston 36-33, but couldn’t overcome 22 turnovers.

Nov 29: Hawks 102, Wizards 98

The AP reports: The Atlanta Hawks were finally able to breathe easily. After nearly frittering away a 17-point third-quarter lead, the Hawks were able to squeeze by the Washington Wizards, thanks to Al Horford’s three-point play with 12.4 seconds remaining. Horford’s big play broke a tie in Atlanta’s 102-98 victory over Washington on Saturday night… Horford, who had 19 points, 13 rebounds and six assists, hit the free throw for a 101-98 lead… Maurice Evans had 19 points and nine rebounds for Atlanta, Joe Johnson had 18 points and Marvin Williams 13. Antawn Jamison led Washington with 26 points and 13 rebounds. He had 17 of his points in the second half. Butler had 21 points and 10 rebounds. Songaila had 16 points.

Nov 28: Lakers 114, Mavs 107

The AP reports: Kobe Bryant scored a season-high 35 points, and the Lakers used a 17-0 run in the second half Friday night to beat the Dallas Mavericks 114-107 and improve the NBA’s best record to 13-1… Andrew Bynum, playing on a sore right foot, had 18 points and 10 rebounds in the Lakers’ sixth straight victory. Bryant was 14-for-26 from the field after going 5-for-17 with 12 points in Wednesday’s 120-93 win over New Jersey… Dirk Nowitzki had 19 points and 12 rebounds in a matchup of the leagues’ last two MVPs, but Dallas’ five-game winning streak was snapped… Jason Kidd, who had a triple-double in the Mavericks’ 106-99 loss to the Lakers on Nov. 11 in Dallas, had 12 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds… Josh Howard missed his fourth straight game because of an injured left ankle.

Nov 28: Blazers 101, Hornets 86

The AP reports: In the latest win, the Blazers used a 17-point, second-half run to beat the New Orleans Hornets 101-86 on Friday night. Roy, who is often cautiously optimistic, had 25 points and 10 assists. The All-Star guard has scored 20-plus points in 10 of the team’s last 12 games. LaMarcus Aldridge had 17 points and seven rebounds for the Blazers (11-6), who are off to their best start since they opened the 2000-01 season 12-6… The loss snapped a four-game winning streak for the Hornets (9-6), who were led by Peja Stojakovic with a season-high 21 points. New Orleans was playing the second game of a back-to-back after edging the Denver Nuggets 105-101 on Thursday night. Chris Paul, who has had triple-doubles in two of the Hornets’ last three games, had 16 points, six rebounds and six assists. It was New Orleans’ fifth straight loss in Portland.

Nov 28: Jazz 120, Kings 94

The AP reports: The Jazz scored 44 points in the third quarter and beat the Sacramento Kings 120-94 on Friday night, getting 15 assists from Deron Williams in just his fifth game of the season. Williams, who missed 13 games with a sprained left ankle from the preseason, had nine assists in the third and then got to rest on the bench for the entire fourth as the Jazz reserves finished off the blowout… C.J. Miles scored 16 of his 18 in the third, including a dunk off an alley-oop from Williams during a 3-on-none break as the Jazz blew open the game after letting the Kings tie it at 50 at halftime… John Salmons led Sacramento with 20 points. Beno Udrih was the only other Sacramento starter to score in double figures… Mehmet Okur had 20 points and 12 rebounds for Utah. Paul Millsap, starting for Boozer, had 11 points and 11 boards. Reserves Andrei Kirilenko, Kyle Korver and Ronnie Price each scored 12. Spencer Hawes added 18 points for the Kings, who sent the Jazz to the foul line 34 times. Utah was 22-for-34 from the line while Sacramento went 9-for-12.

Nov 28: Spurs 109, Grizzlies 98

The AP reports: Manu Ginobili made one acrobatic layup after another. Tony Parker zipped a no-look assist, then sank a tough jumper as an encore. Tim Duncan did what he always does. The gang in San Antonio is finally back together… Parker had 15 points and seven assists after a three-week absence, fearlessly charging toward the basket and faking out defenders like he did before missing the past nine games with a sprained ankle… O.J. Mayo scored 32 points for Memphis, beaten by San Antonio for the second time this week… Roger Mason, who started for Parker at point guard, scored 20 points and was one of six Spurs in double figures.  Memphis got 26 points from Rudy Gay and came within three points of the Spurs in the fourth quarter before falling behind for good.

Nov 28: Wolves 105, Thunder 103

The AP reports: Craig Smith scored a season-high 23 points, Mike Miller drilled the game-winning jumper from the left baseline with 0.1 seconds left, and the Minnesota Timberwolves beat Oklahoma City 105-103 Friday night to hand the Thunder a franchise record-tying 14th straight loss… Al Jefferson finished with 19 points and nine rebounds to narrowly miss his eighth double-double. Miller scored 18 points, reserve Sebastian Telfair contributed 12 and Gomes had 11. Durant and Jeff Green led Oklahoma City with 22 points apiece. Chris Wilcox scored 15 of his season-high 21 points in the fourth quarter to spark the Thunder’s comeback, and Russell Westbrook had 15 points and eight assists.

Nov 28: Bobcats 115, Pacers 108 OT

The AP reports: Raymond Felton made sure the Charlotte Bobcats earned their first road victory of the season. Felton tied a career high with 31 points, including 11 in the fourth quarter and overtime, and the Bobcats beat the Indiana Pacers 115-108 on Friday night… Felton, who finished 11-of-21 from the field and added seven assists, has seen the Bobcats improve every game under Brown… “Raymond won that game for us tonight,” said Charlotte guard Jason Richardson, who added 21 points in his first game back from knee surgery. “He got the game ball.” Augustin had 17 points, Gerald Wallace added 16 points and 11 rebounds, and Emeka Okafor finished with 14 points and 20 rebounds for the Bobcats, who won for just the second time in their past seven games… Danny Granger scored a season-high 35 points, and Marquis Daniels and Ford each had 20 for the Pacers (6-9), who lost their third home game by seven points or less.

Nov 28: Pistons 107, Bucks 97

The AP reports: Coming off the bench for the first time as a Piston, Iverson scored 17 points and led Detroit to a 107-97 victory over the slumping Milwaukee Bucks… Richard Jefferson and Ramon Sessions each scored 21 points for the Bucks, who lost their third consecutive game and trailed by as many as 15 points. Milwaukee center Dan Gadzuric, starting in place of the injured Andrew Bogut, had 12 rebounds… Walter Herrmann added 16 points and Jason Maxiell had 13 for the Pistons, who shot nearly 50 percent in the first half, making 20 of 41. The Bucks (7-11) trailed for more than 40 minutes.

Nov 28: Heat 107, Suns 92

The AP reports: Dwyane Wade was on a mission—and it was impossible for the Phoenix Suns to stop him. Wade scored a season-high 43 points, and the Miami Heat beat the Suns 107-92 Friday night in the first matchup between the teams since the Shaquille O’Neal for Shawn Marion blockbuster trade last February. Neither O’Neal nor Marion was much of a factor in the game dominated by the unstoppable Wade. O’Neal scored 12 points and Marion had 10… Udonis Haslem had 16 points and 11 rebounds, Daequan Cook scored 15 and rookie Mario Chalmers added 13 points for the Heat. Leandro Barbosa, playing on his 26th birthday, led the Suns with 20 points. Raja Bell had 16 and Amare Stoudemire 14… The Suns played without All-Star guard Steve Nash.

Nov 28: Celtics 102, Sixers 78

The AP reports: Ray Allen had a stretch of 11 straight points in the third quarter Friday. Rajon Rondo had a hand in all of them. Allen scored 23 points and Kevin Garnett added 16 to lead the Boston Celtics to their seventh straight victory, 102-78 over the Philadelphia 76ers. Allen was 10-for-15 from the field, including 3-for-5 on 3-pointers… Rondo had 12 assists, including one on the last basket of the third quarter, a perfectly executed alley-oop to Garnett for a dunk. Tony Allen and Leon Powe each scored 10 points for the Celtics. Paul Pierce was limited to six points on 1-for-6 shooting… Brand scored 18 points and Williams added 15 points. Andre Miller and Marreese Speights each had 12 points. Speights was ejected with 43 seconds remaining after committing a flagrant foul on Brian Scalabrine.

Nov 28: Cavs 112, Warriors 97

The AP reports: LeBron James scored 23 points, Zydrunas Ilgauskas added a season-high 21, and the Cavaliers matched their best home start in franchise history with a 112-97 victory over the Golden State Warriors on Friday night. Cleveland (13-3) has won 12 of 13 and is a league-best 9-0 at home, equaling its top home start, first set in 1976-77 and repeated in 1991-92… He was 9-of-13 from the floor, had seven rebounds and eight assists… Mo Williams and Daniel Gibson each scored 16 points for Cleveland. C.J. Watson led Golden State with 17 points. Jamal Crawford added 15… Forwards Ben Wallace and Wally Szczerbiak both had nine rebounds for Cleveland.

Nov 28: Raptors 93, Hawks 88

The AP reports: Chris Bosh had 30 points and 10 rebounds, Jason Kapono scored a season-high 16 points and the Toronto Raptors beat the Atlanta Hawks 93-88. Joey Graham added 11 points and Jamario Moon had 10 for Toronto, with guard Jose Calderon picking up 11 assists. Mike Bibby scored 24 points for Atlanta, Joe Johnson had 18 and reserve Maurice Evans added 17. Al Horford and Marvin Williams each had 10 points for the Hawks, who got 17 rebounds from Zaza Pachulia.

Be honest about ages, says China

The AP reports: China is ordering its basketball players to stop faking their birth dates, local media reported Friday, turning the spotlight back on allegations of systematic altering of athlete’s ages. Sports authorities have sometimes been accused of altering players’ ages to show them as being younger, mainly to qualify them for youth tournaments. Those false ages stay with athletes and can result in embarrassment and regulatory sanctions when athletes move on to greater success. While that practice, known as ‘age shaving,’ is considered widespread in sports such as basketball and football, the opposite was suspected in the controversy surrounding the women’s gymnastics competition at the Beijing Olympics.

Anthony Morrow benched

Golden State Warriors guard Anthony Morrow came out of nowhere and put himself on the map with some big performances recently. Coach Don Nelson, who sometimes appear to flip a coin to decide if he likes a certain player or not anymore, praised him pretty loudly. So what’s up now? The San Francisco Examiner (Matt Steinmetz) reports:

I don’t want to start calling Nelson the “SI Jinx,” but he’s been all over the board with his player assessments during his second stint with the Warriors. And at the very least, words of praise from Nelson don’t seem to carry much weight. Or go very far. In the four games since his sparkling debut against the Clippers, a 15-for-20 shooting night, and impressive follow-up performance against Portland, Morrow has scored 20 total points on 6-for-22 shooting. Morrow’s playing time also has dwindled during that time, going from 34 minutes to 24 minutes to 15 minutes to a DNP-CD vs. the Celtics on Wednesday.

Will Morrow play 37 minutes next game? Or two? Even Don Nelson may not know.

An Andris Biedrins weakness

The Contra Costa Times reports: It has become apparent of late that Andris Biedrins has a weakness in his game other than free throws and post-ups. He struggles against athletic big men. When he is not longer, faster and playing with more energy, he is hardly as effective. It takes a lot of energy out of him to keep up with those types, and he isn’t the type of big man who goes down on the other end and make them pay on offense. Samuel Dalembert, JaVale McGee and Kevin Garnett exposed Biedrins. You don’t realize how much Biedrins got off people overlooking him and not paying attention to him. Wednesday, when a shot went up, Garnett went for Biedrins to block him out. Both Garnett and Dalembert defended Biedrins as if they’d studied his moves, even blocking his little flip shots.

Nov 27: Hornets 105, Nuggets 101

The AP reports: Chris Paul led the Hornets with 22 points and 10 assists but came up six rebounds short of his third straight triple-double. Still, he took the game over late, scoring seven straight points for his team, including a 3-pointer from well behind the arc, with the shot clock running down, to tie it at 92 with 2:07 left… J.R. Smith led the Nuggets with a season-high 32 points. Denver tied it at 98 on Carmelo Anthony’s dunk with 37 seconds left, but the Hornets worked the ball to Posey, who made the 3 from the top right corner to give them the lead for good… Carmelo Anthony had 24 points on 8-for-13 shooting for Denver, showing more signs of coming out of a slump that had him making only 39 percent of his shots so far this season… Rasual Butler made his first seven shots for New Orleans and finished with 19 points. Peja Stojakovic had 17 and David West had 15, including a stick back of Paul’s near air ball that gave the Hornets a 98-94 lead with 52 seconds left.

Nov 27: Magic 105, Wizards 90

The AP reports: The Washington Wizards were helpless against Dwight Howard. The NBA’s leading rebounder, Howard had 26 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks to help the Orlando Magic beat the Wizards 105-90 on Thursday night. Orlando has won eight of its last nine games and six in a row on the road. Howard toyed with four Washington defenders—scoring 14 points and grabbing nine rebounds in the first 8:45 as the Magic took a 25-11 lead… Caron Butler scored 19 of his 25 points in the first half for Washington, and Antawn Jamison had 17 points and 12 rebounds… Hedo Turkoglu added 20 points and had a season-high 10 rebounds… Rashard Lewis, who gave Orlando a victory Wednesday night in Philadelphia with a late 3-pointer, added 17 points, and Mickael Peitrus also had 17. Anthony Johnson had a season-high 12 assists.

Knicks suspend Stephon Marbury

New York Knickerbockers President of Basketball Operations Donnie Walsh announced today that guard Stephon Marbury has been suspended one game without pay and his salary will be reduced an additional 1/110th for refusing to play when called upon on Wednesday, Nov. 26 at Detroit. Marbury will serve his suspension tomorrow when the Knicks host the Golden State Warriors at Madison Square Garden.

“A player’s central obligation is to provide his professional services when called upon,” Walsh said. “Because he refused the Coach’s request to play in the team’s last game, we had no choice but to impose disciplinary action.”

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