Archive for November 22nd, 2008

Nov 22: Jazz 103, Grizzlies 94

The AP reports: Mehmet Okur had a season-high 23 points to lead the Utah Jazz to a 103-94 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday night. Okur was 9-of-15 from the field, including missing only one of his five shots from 3-point range, as the Jazz won the sixth straight game in the series. Ronnie Brewer, who was 10-of-14 from the floor, added 21 points, Morris Almond had 11, and Ronnie Price 10. O.J. Mayo led Memphis with 23 points, and Rudy Gay added 21. Darrell Arthur had 16 points and nine rebounds, and Mike Conley finished with 14 points and eight assists. The Jazz were short-handed. Guard Deron Williams missed his 12th game because of a sprained ankle, Carlos Boozer sat out with a strained left quadriceps, and Kyle Korver was sidelined by an inflamed right wrist.

Nov 22: Suns 102, Blazers 92

The AP reports: Shaquille O’Neal had 19 points and 17 rebounds to power the Phoenix Suns to a 102-92 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday night. Amare Stoudemire added 17 points, Steve Nash had 16 on 6-for-7 shooting, and Grant Hill scored 15 for the Suns, who beat the Blazers for the second time in Phoenix this season. The Suns’ Raja Bell scored all 14 of his points in the second half. O’Neal’s performance included a head-first dive over the first two rows of seats trying to save a loose ball with 2:55 to play. Brandon Roy scored 26 points for Portland. Steve Blake added 22, 14 in the third quarter. Greg Oden, in his first matchup against the massive O’Neal, had five points, one rebound and five fouls in 14 minutes off the bench.

Nov 22: Hornets 109, Thunder 97

The AP reports: David West scored a season-high 33 points and Chris Paul had a triple-double to help New Orleans beat Oklahoma City 109-97 on Saturday night, handing the Thunder their 11th straight loss and first under Scott Brooks… Paul and West each had four points as the Hornets finished of the Thunder with an 8-2 run to make it 100-89. West capped off the spurt with a layup after Paul came up with a steal. Paul finished with 29 points, 16 assists and 10 rebounds. Kevin Durant led Oklahoma City with 30 points on 11-of-16 shooting, keeping the Thunder close with 24 points through three quarters. Jeff Green added 17 points, and Chris Wilcox scored 10 of his 14 points in the fourth quarter.

Nov 22: Nets 112, Clippers 95

The AP reports: Yi Jianlian had a season-high 27 points, and Vince Carter added 26 to help the New Jersey Nets beat the short-handed Los Angeles Clippers 112-95 on Saturday night. Devin Harris had 18 points and 10 assists, and Brook Lopez finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Bobby Simmons had 11 points as every Nets starter hit for double figures and New Jersey got its fourth win in the last five games. It was an odd shooting night for the Nets, who went 11-for-19 from 3-point range but were only 25-for-39 from the free-throw line. Baron Davis had 30 points and 10 assists for the Clippers (2-11). Marcus Camby added 18 points and 13 rebounds, and Al Thornton had 18 points.

Nov 22: Knicks 122, Wizards 117

The AP reports: Quentin Richardson had 34 points and 12 rebounds in one of his best games since coming to New York, and the short-handed Knicks held on to beat the Washington Wizards 122-117 on Saturday night. Richardson made seven 3-pointers, two shy of the franchise record, and fell a point shy of his highest-scoring game since the Knicks acquired him from Phoenix in June 2005. He scored 35 points against the Wizards on Jan. 17, 2007. Nate Robinson had a season-high 27 points, Wilson Chandler added 23, and David Lee had 22 points and 12 rebounds to help the Knicks snap a three-game losing streak. Antawn Jamison had 29 points and 13 rebounds for the Wizards, who dropped their fifth straight and fell to 1-10, their worst since the 1966 Baltimore Bullets also opened 1-10. Caron Butler finished with 23 points, 19 in the second half.

Nov 22: Heat 109, Pacers 100

The AP reports: Dwyane Wade shook off flu-like symptoms to score 38 points, and the Heat outscored Indiana by 21 after halftime to beat the Pacers 109-100 on Saturday night… Shawn Marion had 18 points, nine rebounds and six steals, while Michael Beasley scored 14 of his 17 points in the second half for Miami. Udonis Haslem added 16 points for the Heat, who limited Indiana to 37 percent shooting in the second half on the way to outscoring the Pacers 61-40 in the final 24 minutes… Marquis Daniels scored 25 points, and Danny Granger added 23 for the Pacers, who fell to 1-4 on the road. Rasho Nesterovic scored 13 points, T.J. Ford added 11 and Brandon Rush had 10 for Indiana… Daniels scored 10 points in the first quarter, helping stake Indiana to a quick 31-20 edge. The Pacers opened the lead up to as many as 15 in the second, before settling for a 60-48 edge at the break—matching the most points Miami has allowed in any half this season.

Nov 22: Cavs 110, Hawks 96

The AP reports: LeBron James, who came in as the NBA’s top scorer averaging 29.5 points, finished with 24—19 in the second half—on 8-of-19 shooting. He added eight assists, seven rebounds and a few more highlight-package dunks as the Cavaliers improved to 10-3 to match their best start since the 1988-89 season… James got plenty of help as Mo Williams scored 23 points, Delonte West 19 and Zydrunas Ilgauskas 17 for Cleveland. The Cavs have won 15 of their last 18 games against the Hawks. Maurice Evans scored 21 points, Acie Law had 20 and Joe Johnson, who came in averaging 25.7, scored just four for the Hawks, who have lost five of seven after starting 6-0… Driving down the lane, James got a step on Al Horford, rose to the basket and dunked left handed over both Horford and Solomon Jones, making the pair of 6-foot-10, 245-pounders look like high schoolers.

Nov 22: Bucks 79, Bobcats 74

The AP reports: The Bucks held on for a 79-74 victory Saturday night in a game where both teams were without their top scorers. It showed. They each shot 37 percent and combined for 39 turnovers… Ramon Sessions scored 18 points and finally put it away by hitting two free throws with 13 seconds left, giving the Bucks their second straight win on a night where they lost another starter to injury… The Bucks also played their 11th straight game without Michael Redd (ankle), who didn’t make the trip and likely won’t play for another week. Sessions and Charlie Villanueva gave the Bucks a boost off the bench. Villanueva added 15 points and eight rebounds in his second game back from a hamstring injury helping Milwaukee overcome 21 turnovers. Charlotte was without Jason Richardson (knee) for a fifth straight game, and dropped its fourth straight in a difficult start to coach Larry Brown’s first season. Gerald Wallace scored 18 points, and Emeka Okafor added 16 points and 18 rebounds before fouling out.

Nov 22: Rockets 100, Magic 95

The AP reports: Yao Ming, Houston’s 7-foot-6 All-Star, outplayed Dwight Howard in nearly every phase Saturday night, scoring 22 points and taking down 13 rebounds while carrying a tired Houston Rocket team to a 100-95 victory over Howard and the Orlando Magic. The Rockets got 17 points each from Tracy McGrady and Rafer Alston, and 11 apiece from Ron Artest and Carl Landry. Houston shot 54 percent in the second half to break open a close contest and win for the fourth time in the last five games… Jameer Nelson led Orlando with 21 points and six assists, and Lewis added 18 points, but the Magic shot only 40.7 percent. Howard had three fouls in the first half and got his fourth less than a minute into the third period in trying to defend Yao. Howard finished with 13 points and nine rebounds… Magic F Hedo Turkoglu sat out the game because of the flu.

Shaq vs Oden Saturday night

Phoenix Suns center Shaquille O’Neal, now old and slowing down, still has game and once he retires will be known as one of the best ever at his position.

Portland Trail Blazers center Greg Oden missed the entire 2007-08 season but is playing this season and is considered a rookie. At a listed 285-pounds, Oden is much bigger than he was the day he was drafted first by the Portland Trail Blazers, and is still adjusting as he learns to play in the NBA while getting himself into proper shape.

Tonight at 9 p.m. ET the Blazers visit the Suns, and the two big-men will face each other for the first time.

In no way is this a true measure of how good Oden is, or how good he may someday become. Shaq, now 36 years old, is not himself anymore and putting up a modest 15.1 points and 7.9 rebounds per game. Oden, putting up 9.6 points, 7.7 rebounds and 2.1 blocks on 51.2% shooting, may take another full year to get over his knee injuries and resulting surgeries, plus he still has to get in shape and develop a more sound offensive game.

Also, Shaq plays limited minutes. And Oden comes off the bench behind Joel Przybilla. So Shaq and Oden may only be on the court at the same time for brief stretches.

Still, it’s worth watching if you get it on local TV or have league pass.

Jermaine O`Neal day-to-day

The Toronto Raptors announced Saturday that centre Jermaine O’Neal sustained a strained left knee at the 11:37 mark of the fourth quarter during Friday’s game versus New Jersey. O’Neal had medical images taken of the knee Friday night that revealed no structural damage. His status is listed as day-to-day.

O’Neal had averaged 17 points and 13.5 rebounds over a five game stretch coming into Friday’s contest. He has posted averages of 12.9 points and 9.3 rebounds in 12 games this season.

Thunder fire coach PJ Carlesimo

The Oklahoma City Thunder announced today that PJ Carlesimo has been relieved of his duties as the team’s head coach.

“This was a very difficult decision to make,” said Executive Vice President/General Manager Sam Presti. “It is one that I felt was necessary at this time. I am very appreciative of the hard work and effort that PJ gave to this team and we wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

Assistant coach Scott Brooks will take over as interim head coach of the Thunder.

Carlesimo was named head coach on July 5 2007, becoming the 15th head coach in franchise history. During his one-plus season Carlesimo guided the franchise to a 21-74 (.221) record.

Over the span of eight seasons Carlesimo holds a career coaching record of 204-296 (.408).

The team also announced that Paul Westhead was relieved of his duties as assistant coach.

Basketball blog