Archive for November 11th, 2008

2009 All-Star ballot here

As always, voting for All-Stars starts way too early in the season. But it’s just as much a popularity contest as it is a measure of who is actually playing like a genuine all-star, so we don’t argue too loudly about it.

Revealed today is the official 2008-09 NBA All-Star ballot.

Warriors hire Larry Harris

The Golden State Warriors have hired Larry Harris as an assistant coach, the team announced today.  Per team policy, terms of the agreement were not announced.

Harris, 45, joins Head Coach Don Nelson’s staff after spending the last 19 seasons in the Milwaukee Bucks organization.  After originally joining the Bucks staff as a scout/video coordinator under his father, then-Milwaukee Head Coach Del Harris, in 1990, he also served stints as the team’s director of player personnel, director of scouting, assistant general manager and general manager.

Deron Williams back tonight

The Deseret News (Tim Buckley) reports: Point guard Deron Williams informed the Jazz this morning that he will try to make his 2008-09 NBA season debut tonight, when Utah visits Philadelphia in its second outing of a five-game road trip. “He told me he’s gonna play,” Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said after the team’s morning shootaround at Wachovia Center here. “We’ll probably play him sparingly. “You know how he is,” Sloan added. “He might want to get out there five minutes and say he feels great. But we’re gonna try to watch him pretty close.” editor says: Obvious guess is, if D-Will does play he’ll probably play limited minutes. He might as well ease into the season over the next few games. Great that he’s finally back.

Tayshaun Prince to be point forward

The Detroit News (Chris McCosky) reports: As the Pistons try to reinvent themselves with Allen Iverson and without a true point guard, the guy they might turn to for stability, once again, is Tayshaun Prince. Among the modifications coach Michael Curry is making to his offense is using Prince in the role of a point forward, initiating the offense, while Iverson and Richard Hamilton work on the wings. “Tay is going to facilitate some of our offense,” Curry said after the Pistons’ two-hour practice at Arco Arena Monday. “He will get into it with Allen handing it off to Tay. And there are other sets that Tay will start himself.” Curry worries, though, about tampering at all with Prince’s role. He has averaged 23 points the last three games.

Sixers still adjusting to Elton Brand

The Philadelphia Inquirer (Kate Fagan) reports: The Sixers are going back to basics: working on their spacing around power forward Elton Brand. Yesterday was the last of three days of practice at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine before tonight’s 7 o’clock game against the Utah Jazz (5-1). The Sixers (2-4) haven’t played since a Thursday night loss at the Orlando Magic. “With Elton, we need to read and react,” coach Maurice Cheeks said. “Certainly, the last few days we’ve been practicing that.” “It’s different playing with a post player who commands attention,” said swingman Andre Iguodala, whose scoring average has dipped to 11.0 points per game, down from last season’s 19.9 average. “It’s everyone who is adjusting, not just me.”

Perkins and JO have beef

The Boston Herald (Steve Buckley) reports: According to Kendrick Perkins, these confrontations with Jermaine O’Neal are getting serious. “There’s always words exchanged,” he said. “We do have something personal. That’s how we’ve been since we’ve been matching up. But you know, it is what it is.” Don’t worry, though, Perkins and O’Neal won’t be meeting out on Causeway Street to settle whatever differences they may have. “He’s out there competing,” Perkins said. “It’s nothing personal off the court, but it’s personal when we get on the court.

Kevin Love hit with rookie hazing

The St. Paul Pioneer Press (Don Seeholzer) reports: As the Wolves’ only rookie, Kevin Love was forced to sing happy birthday to forward Craig Smith in front of the entire team after practice Monday. Let’s just say his voice never will be confused with that of his famous uncle Mike of the Beach Boys. “He has no singing voice, no rhythm at all,” Wittman cracked. “It’s hard to believe that he’s got a relative that seemed to have that.” Love, in his defense, said happy birthday isn’t his song and that he would have nailed the Star-Spangled Banner. Asked if that was his first and last singing gig, he said: “No, I’m going to have to do it again. They’re going to make me dance, too, so I’ve got to figure out what new flavor I’m going to bring next time.”

Words from Mom help Travis Outlaw

The Oregonian (Jason Quick) reports: Today, Travis Outlaw feels like he is on top of the world after his 20 points and five rebounds were the catalysts in the Blazers’ first road win of the season — 106-99 over Orlando. What changed? Turns out, a phone conversation with Mom got Outlaw on track. Last Thursday, Outlaw was driving to the Rose Garden for the Blazers’ game against Houston when he remembered that his mother, Markeeta Outlaw, had wanted him to call. Back home in Starkville, Miss., Markeeta hadn’t liked what she had seen from her middle child during the Blazers’ opening stretch of the season. So when Travis called, she told him so. “She said, ‘You don’t seem like yourself out there. You don’t seem like you are having fun,’” Outlaw recalled… “She asked why I wasn’t doing more out there?” Outlaw said. “She told me, ‘Don’t just sit there in the corner — cut to the basket, go get rebounds. You need to have fun.’”

Nov 10: Suns 107, Grizzlies 102

The AP reports: Rookie O.J. Mayo did all he could to rally Memphis in the fourth quarter against the Phoenix Suns. Unfortunately, the Grizzlies had no answer for Leandro Barbosa. Mayo had 19 of his game-high 33 points in the final period, but the victory went to the fifth-year veteran known as the Brazilian Blur and Phoenix as the Suns won 107-102 on Monday night. Barbosa almost went shot-for-shot with the rookie in the fourth, scoring 16 of his team-high 27 points in the period, including the go-ahead 3-pointer with 43.8 seconds left… Amare Stoudemire scored 18 points, Boris Diaw added 13 and Nash had 12 points and six assists for the Suns, who have won five of their past six games overall… Rudy Gay scored 20 and Marc Gasol finished with 15 for the Grizzlies, who were 1-3 on their four-game Western road trip. Notes: Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley shot 0-of-6 for no points, 3 steals and almost nothing else in almost 25 minutes. Kyle Lowry struggled off the bench behind Conley, however, shooting 1-of-6 for 2 points.

Nov 10: Celtics 94, Raptors 87

The AP reports: Paul Pierce walked into the postgame interview room with his right hand wrapped in ice, cooling down after a hot shooting final quarter. “We’re cooling it down,” Kevin Garnett joked after Pierce scored 22 of his 36 points in the fourth quarter to lead Boston’s 94-87 comeback win over the Raptors on Monday night… Pierce made 7-of-9 shots in the final quarter—including a pair of 3s just 40 seconds apart midway into the period—as Boston overcame an eight-point deficit en route to its fifth straight win… Garnett added 21 points and 10 rebounds, and Ray Allen had 19 points for the Celtics (7-1). Boston scored 58 points in the second half after getting just 36 in the opening 24 minutes… Jermaine O’Neal recovered from a rough night in Sunday’s win over Charlotte, leading the Raptors (4-3) with 23 points and 11 rebounds. Anthony Parker scored 15 and Jason Kapono 14 for Toronto. Notes: Chris Bosh shot just 3-of-8 for 9 points and 7 rebounds. Jason Kapono shot 6-of-10 for 14 points. Andrea Bargnani did almost nothing in 11 minutes.

Nov 10: Heat 99, Nets 94

The AP reports: Dwyane Wade scored 19 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter, 14 of those in the final 4 1/2 minutes, and the Heat rallied to beat the New Jersey Nets 99-94 on Monday night to stay perfect at home this season. He entered the game 0-for-9 from 3-point range this season, but connected on four against the Nets, including three from beyond the arc during the frantic comeback… Michael Beasley scored 29 points and Daequan Cook added 15 for the Heat, who scored 26 points off turnovers and went 25-for-26 from the foul line—including a game-sealing 6-for-6 effort by Chris Quinn in the final 12.9 seconds… Yi Jianlian made a career-best five 3-pointers and finished with 24 points and 10 rebounds for the Nets, who got 22 points from Vince Carter… Former Heat guard Keyon Dooling scored 18 points for New Jersey, which also got 12 from Jarvis Hayes and 11 from Bobby Simmons. Notes: Brook Lopez played just 14 minutes for the Nets and did little. Mario Chalmers, who starts at point guard for the Heat, had just 2 assists. Shawn Marion, Marcus Banks and Mark Blount didn’t play.

Nov 10: Blazers 106, Magic 99

The AP reports: Brandon Roy scored 27 points to lead the Blazers. Dwight Howard, battling a chest cold, had 29 points and a season-high 19 rebounds. Hedo Turkoglu added 35 points for the Magic, who finished their homestand 4-1. Point guard Steve Blake and reserve Travis Outlaw had 20 apiece as Portland’s bench outscored Orlando’s 40-12… Trailing 73-72 entering the final period, Portland scored the first 11 points of the fourth quarter, fueled by two 3-pointers by Rudy Fernandez. He finished with 16 points… The Magic shot only 29.2 percent from behind the arc, which Van Gundy attributed to poor ball movement… Travis Outlaw, who played 41 minutes, more than any Blazers’ starter, made 3-of-5 3-pointers. Notes: Keith Bogans, who had 12 points, was the only Magic bench player to score.

Nov 10: Pacers 107, Thunder 99

The AP reports: T.J. Ford had 24 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds on Monday night to help Indiana beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 107-99… Ford scored 11 points in the fourth quarter as Indiana (3-3) pulled away. Danny Granger added 20 points and seven rebounds for the Pacers, who won their second straight… Kevin Durant led the Thunder (1-6) with 37 points and eight rebounds, but he was dissatisfied with his team’s effort in the fourth quarter… Indiana F Troy Murphy left the game during the second quarter with the stomach flu and did not return. Notes: Earl Watson started at point guard for the Thunder and shot 2-of-11 with 9 assists. Russell Westbrook came off the bench to shoot 1-of-10.

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