Archive for November 9th, 2008

Deron Williams may be back within days

By editor Jeff Lenchiner

Utah Jazz point guard Deron Williams told he may be back on the court in a matter of days, not weeks.

Reports came out over the last day or two that he would miss 2-4 weeks. But after Sunday’s Jazz-Knicks game in New York, I caught up with D-Will in the hallway and asked about it. “it could be days,” Williams said about his hopeful return.

The Jazz were undefeated in the short NBA season until the visit to Madison Square Garden, where they have struggled in recent seasons.

Heat settle into rotation

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel (Ira Winderman) reports: The Heat seems to be hitting its stride with Udonis Haslem having settled in at center and Mario Chalmers at point guard. In addition, Chris Quinn has morphed into Jason Kapono.  The question now is whether there is room for anyone else in what has grown into a tight, comfortable rotation, with Haslem, Michael Beasley, Shawn Marion, Dwyane Wade and Chalmers as the starters, and then Quinn, Yakhouba Diawara, Daequan Cook and Mark Blount off the bench.

Nov 9: Raptors 89, Bobcats 79

The AP reports: Chris Bosh had 30 points and 15 rebounds, and the Toronto Raptors pulled away late for an 89-79 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats on Sunday. Andrea Bargnani scored 18 points for the Raptors, including a key 3-pointer with less than six minutes to go that put them ahead to stay.
Jose Calderon added 13 points and Jamario Moon had 10 for Toronto, which snapped a two-game losing streak after opening the season with three straight wins.
Bobcats rookie D.J. Augustin scored 11 of his 14 points in the second quarter in helping Charlotte take a 45-40 lead at the break. Jason Richardson and Raymond Felton had 12 points each, and Jared Dudley 10.

Deron Williams out 4 weeks

The AP reports: Tony Parker will be out about four weeks with a sprained left ankle, a critical blow to the San Antonio Spurs, who are off to their worst start in 12 years. An MRI taken Saturday confirmed the injury to the Spurs’ star guard, who was hurt during a 99-83 loss to the Miami Heat on Friday — two nights after scoring a career-high 55 points against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Parker was driving for a layup when he rolled his ankle.

John Salmons nickname: Get Right

The Sacramento Bee (Martin McNeal) reports: Kings forward John Salmons earns the nickname “Get Right” for many reasons. As unique as his game is, he is solid offensively and defensively. As much as he holds the ball, he contributes when given minutes. However, Salmons gets this nickname because when he has the rock in his hands, he’s going to get right. It takes a certain ability to go where you want to go even when the defender knows where you want to go. Salmons uses his shake-and-bake fake to get right. He uses his jab step to get right. His head-and-shoulders pump fake is designed to get his defender off-balance. The defender backs up, and Salmons can take his jump shot. Or he can use the off-balance defender however he wishes to, yes, get right.

Hawks off to strong start

It’s too early in the season to focus on records or standings, but still, the Atlanta Hawks deserve praise for their 4 wins with no losses. All their wins were against decent or good teams: the Magic, 76ers, Hornets and Raptors.

They’ve been led by Joe Johnson, who has averaged 25.3 points, 6.0 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game on 55.4% shooting.

Mike Bibby has played well, though he still needs to shoot better.

Flip Murray has provided a nice scoring boost, scoring 12.0 ppg.

Josh Smith, who isn’t scoring much but steals the ball, blocks shots and makes a difference on both ends of the court, has been decent, but will now miss the next several weeks due to a sprained ankle.

Al Horford and Marvin Williams have both started the season fairly quietly. But new Hawk Maurice Evans has provided nice scoring punch.

Nov 8: Blazers 97, Wolves 93

The AP reports: LaMarcus Aldridge had 24 points and 12 rebounds, Brandon Roy added 24 points and nine assists and the Portland Trail Blazers beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 97-93 on Saturday night to improve to 3-0 at home. Al Jefferson finished with 27 points after starting off 3-for-10 from the field for Minnesota in its fifth straight loss. Mike Miller had 14 points and six assists… Travis Outlaw and Rudy Fernandez each had 11 points for Portland. Randy Foye had 11 for Minnesota, and Craig Smith added 10.

Nov 8: Cavs 106, Bulls 97

The AP reports: LeBron James toyed with Chicago again, scoring 41 points for the second time in four days, and the Cleveland Cavaliers hung on to beat the Bulls 106-97 on Saturday night… Zydrunas Ilgauskas scored 16 points for Cleveland, which was coming off a 111-107 victory over Indiana on Friday night, but the night belonged to James… Ben Gordon scored 29 points for Chicago. Luol Deng added 20, and Derrick Rose had 16… Besides Hinrich, the Bulls were missing F Drew Gooden.

Nov 8: Suns 104, Bucks 96

The AP reports: Shaquille O’Neal had 29 points and 11 rebounds in his return from a one-game break, leading the Phoenix Suns to a 104-96 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night. O’Neal was 12-of-16 from the field a night after skipping a game in Chicago as part of a strategy to occasionally rest him during the season… Amare Stoudemire, who had 24 points and seven rebounds against Chicago on Friday night and 49 points against Indiana on Wednesday night, added 22 points, making 18 of 20 free throws to help the Suns beat the Bucks for the fifth straight time. Grant Hill had 13 points and 11 rebounds, and Steve Nash added 16 points and seven assists for Phoenix… Ramon Sessions scored 23 points for the Bucks. Charlie Bell added 16, and Richard Jefferson and Luc Richard Mbah a Moute each had 14 for Milwaukee, which played without guard Michael Redd (sprained right knee) for the third straight game.

Nov 8: Hornets 100, Heat 89

The AP reports: Chris Paul finished with 21 points and 13 assists for his sixth straight double-double of at least 20 points and 10 assists to open the season, surpassing the mark set by Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson in 1968… Paul also had seven rebounds and four steals to help the Hornets (4-2) snap a two-game losing streak. Nevertheless, Paul wouldn’t take complete credit for the record… Tyson Chandler added 13 points and 10 rebounds, and David West had 21 points for New Orleans. Dywane Wade led the Heat with 30 points, and Udonis Haslem added 12. Notes: Dwyane Wade (9-of-20) had 30 points, 6 rebounds and 10 assists for the Heat. Michael Beasley (4-of-13), Shawn Marion and Udonis Haslem all scored in low double-digits. Chris Quinn shot well off the bench for 14 points.

Nov 8: Pacers 98, Nets 80

The AP reports: Danny Granger scored 23 points to lead the Indiana Pacers to a 98-80 victory over the New Jersey Nets on Saturday night… Indiana guard T.J. Ford nearly had a triple-double, but settled for 13 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. Troy Murphy had 17 points and 10 rebounds, and Jeff Foster added 12 points and 13 rebounds for the Pacers. Notes: Devin Harris didn’t play for the Nets. Starting in his place at point guard was Keyon Dooling, who shot 7-of-11 for 17 points and 4 assists. Vince Carter shot 11-of-22 for 31 points. But the Nets frontcourt was awful: Yi Jianlian shot 1-of-10 for 2 points and 11 rebounds. Bobby Simmons tossed up bricks for 6 points and little else. And Josh Boone had 4 points with 7 rebounds. The Pacers dominated the glass and had 23 assists while the Nets had just 10. Mike Dunleavy still hasn’t played yet this season for the Pacers.

Nov 8: Magic 106, Wizards 81

The AP reports: Dwight Howard had a season-high 31 points and 16 rebounds and also blocked three shots and had three assists to help the Orlando Magic win their fourth straight game, 106-81 over the winless Washington Wizards on Saturday night… Howard, who leads the NBA in blocked shots, hit 11 of 13 shots and nine of 14 free throws. Mickael Pietrus added 18 points for the Magic (4-2), and Keith Bogans had 13, including three 3-pointers… Nick Young had 20 points for the Wizards (0-5), the only team in the Eastern Conference without a victory this season. DeShawn Stevenson added 14 points.

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