Archive for February 9th, 2009

Al Jefferson tears ACL in right knee

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced that center Al Jefferson will be out indefinitely after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his right knee. A Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) study done this morning revealed the extent of the injury, which occurred in Minnesota’s game last night at New Orleans. The date for surgery has yet to be determined.

“This is an unfortunate situation for Al and we wish him a quick recovery,” said Timberwolves head coach Kevin McHale. “Al has been playing at an all-star level all season and has been our go-to-guy on the court. Knowing Al, he will work hard in his rehab efforts to get back on the court as soon as possible. In the interim, I’m confident that the other players on our roster will step up and meet this challenge.”

Jefferson has appeared in all 50 games for the Timberwolves this season with averages of 23.1 ppg (7th in NBA), 11.0 rpg (6th in NBA), and 1.7 bpg. The fifth-year center is one of just three players in the NBA (Dwight Howard, Tim Duncan) to post at least 20 points and 10 rebounds per game this season. Jefferson also ranks fifth in the NBA with 30 double-doubles in 2008-09 and is shooting 49.7% from the field while averaging a career-best 73.8% from the free-throw line. In his five-year NBA career, Jefferson has posted averages of 14.9 points, 8.5 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game.

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Cleveland Cavaliers rookie Darnell Jackson was assigned to the Erie BayHawks, the Cavaliers’ NBA Development League affiliate, it was announced today.  The assignment is the 21st of the 2008-09 NBA D-League season and the first in BayHawks history.

Originally selected in the second round of the 2008 NBA Draft by the Miami Heat, Jackson was acquired by Cleveland in exchange for two second round picks in the 2009 NBA Draft.  The 6-9 forward, has seen action in 24 games for Cleveland this season and has totaled 25 points and 29 rebounds.

A four-year contributor at Kansas and a member of the 2008 NCAA Championship squad, Jackson averaged 6.8 points and 4.9 rebounds while shooting .580 from the field in his 125-game NCAA career.  Following his senior season, after averaging 11.2 points, a team-high 6.7 rebounds and scoring in double figures on 24 occasions, he was named to the All-Big 12 Third Team and Big 12 All-Improved Team by members of the media.

Jackson is expected to join the BayHawks today and be available tonight when the team hosts the Utah Flash.

The Milwaukee Bucks have signed guard Eddie Gill (6-1, 185) to a 10-day contract, General Manager John Hammond announced today.

Gill, 30, has played 22 games for the Colorado 14ers of the NBA Development League this season and averaged 16.2 points, 8.6 assists, 4.2 rebounds and 1.6 steals in 35.5 minutes per contest.  Last season for the 14ers, he averaged 18.0 points, 8.5 assists and 5.1 rebounds in 37 games.  Gill began the 2007-08 season with the New Jersey Nets and appeared in 13 games before being waived on December 12, 2007.

A seven-year NBA veteran, Gill began his NBA career with New Jersey in 2001.  In 181 career games he has averaged 3.1 points, 1.1 rebounds and 1.1 assists with stints at New Jersey (2001, 2007), Memphis (2002), Portland (2004), Indiana (2004-2006) and Seattle (2008).

Not drafted out of Weber State in 2000, Gill began his professional basketball career with Las Vegas of the International Basketball League.  He has also played professionally in the American Basketball Association (Kansas City), the CBA (Dakota), as well as overseas in Italy, Greece and Russia.

The Bucks roster is now at 15 players.

Iverson throws nasty pass

The Detroit Free Press (Carlos Monarrez) reports: On a fast break late in the third quarter, Allen Iverson spotted Richard Hamilton streaking toward the basket and bounced a pass through Grant Hill’s legs. Hamilton took the pass under the basket and scored on a lay-up. “I just saw Rip running,” Iverson said. “I didn’t want to put too much air under it, so that’s why I bounced it. I felt like if I threw a bounce pass it would get there fast enough. I think Grant going for it, trying to steal it, he just added more to the play. It might not have seemed as spectacular if he wouldn’t have tried to stick his foot out there and kick it. It’s a play that I’ve made before, a play that I’ve been practicing since I was kid, since seeing Magic Johnson do it.”

Adam Morrison to wear no.6

The Press-Enterprise (Jeff Eisenberg) reports: Newly acquired Adam Morrison will switch from No. 35 to No. 6, symbolic of his quest for a fresh start with the Lakers. “Some people have forgotten about his skill as a basketball player, but this is an opportunity to start over,” Jackson said. “It’s the Western Conference, he’s a Western kid. It’s a much more hospitable environment for him.”

The AP reports: Corey Maggette scored 24 points and Stephen Jackson had 20 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists in the Warriors’ latest impressive home victory, 116-96 on Sunday night. Kelenna Azubuike scored 16 points and C.J. Watson added 14 for the Warriors, who routed Phoenix four days earlier in Oakland behind Jackson’s first career triple-double… Deron Williams had 31 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds for the Jazz, who slipped back into ninth place behind the Suns in the Western Conference with their first loss in four games… Mehmet Okur had 21 points and nine rebounds, and C.J. Miles scored 10 points in his return to the Utah lineup after missing two games with bronchitis.

The AP reports: Steve Nash scored 15 and had a season-high 21 assists, directing a balanced offense for Phoenix in a 107-97 win over the Detroit Pistons on Sunday night… Amare Stoudemire had 18 points and seven rebounds, Jason Richardson scored 21, Shaquille O’Neal had nine of his 20 points in the pivotal second period, and Grant Hill added 10 points… Richard Hamilton scored 27 and Iverson had 25 points for the Pistons, who have lost 11 of 17. Rasheed Wallace scored 16, Tayshaun Prince had 11 and Rodney Stuckey was held to just eight points and only one assist for the Pistons.

The AP reports: The Oklahoma City Thunder got caught up in Sacramento’s fast-paced style of play and just barely escaped with a victory. Kevin Durant scored 39 points—his fourth-straight game with 30 or more— as the Thunder held off the Sacramento Kings for a 116-113 victory Sunday night after blowing a 19-point second-quarter lead… Beno Udrih finished with 29 points, and John Salmons and Kevin Martin had 23 each for the Kings, who finished the night shooting 55 percent from the field and 67 percent (12-of-18) from 3-point range.

The AP reports: Sean Marks dunked with 7.8 seconds left to cap a career-high 18-point effort, and the short-handed Hornets overcame the ejection of David West in a 101-97 victory… Rasual Butler scored 23 and reserve guard Devin Brown 14 for New Orleans, which won its second straight while handing Minnesota its third-straight loss. Al Jefferson led Minnesota with 25 points and 14 rebounds, but had to be helped off the court inside the final 30 seconds with a right knee injury… New Orleans, already starting the game without All-Star Chris Paul (groin) and starting center Tyson Chandler (ankle), lost another All-Star when West was ejected late in the second quarter.

The AP reports: Brandon Roy’s finger-roll layup at the buzzer gave Portland a 109-108 victory over the Knicks on Sunday… Roy, who was selected to the All-Star team as a reserve, finished with 19 points and eight assists, while Outlaw led the Blazers with 23 points. Greg Oden had 17 points and 12 rebounds for his 15th double-double of the season, and added a career-high six blocked shots. David Lee led the Knicks with 29 points and 11 rebounds. After trailing by 13 points in the first half, the Knicks built a 17-point lead in the second.

The AP reports: Caron Butler scored 15 straight points, including a game-winning 18-footer at the buzzer, as the Wizards edged the Indiana Pacers 119-117 on Sunday night… Danny Granger led Indiana with 29 points, while T.J. Ford added 23 and Troy Murphy had 18 and 10 rebounds… Through the first three quarters, Antawn Jamison kept Washington afloat with a season-high 34 points, but he missed both his shots in the fourth quarter. Fortunately for the Wizards, who recorded just their 11th win against 40 losses, Butler more than made up for him.

The AP reports: Dwyane Wade emerged after the game wearing oversized red boxing gloves and a black robe, barely able to see out of his left eye after getting struck by Juwan Howard… Yes, the Miami Heat star was ailing, but Mario Chalmers and Daequan Cook did enough to put a smile on Wade’s stitched-together face. Fighting off the flu, Wade scored 22 points, Chalmers added 16 with a career-best 13 assists, and Cook’s 16-point effort included two key 3-pointers in the fourth quarter as the Heat beat the Bobcats 96-92 Sunday night… D.J. Augustin scored 27 points for Charlotte, which has lost five straight. Howard added 14 points and one blow that forced Wade into getting six stitches.

The AP reports: Playing fewer minutes and sitting out key stretches, Dwight Howard had 30 points and 16 rebounds to lift the Orlando Magic to a 101-84 victory over the New Jersey Nets on Sunday night. Howard played a little more than 35 minutes, about seven fewer than he’d been playing over the past few weeks… Mickael Pietrus added 17 points, and Hedo Turkoglu scored 15 for the Magic, who rebounded from an ugly loss to Indiana on Friday and improved to 2-1 since All-Star point guard Jameer Nelson suffered a shoulder injury. Devin Harris had 28 points and 12 assists, and Brook Lopez added 19 points and 12 rebounds for the Nets, who had their four-game winning streak snapped a day after beating Denver 114-70 in maybe their most impressive performance of the season.

The AP reports: With Kobe Bryant suffering from the flu, Lamar Odom scored a season-high 28 points—15 in the third quarter— and Paul Gasol scored 18 as the streak-busting Los Angeles Lakers dominated the second half and handed Cleveland its first home loss this season, 101-91 on Sunday to complete a 6-0 road trip… Zydrunas Ilgauskas scored 22 to lead Cleveland, which shot just 28 percent (11-of-39) in the second half and didn’t play its customary shutdown defense. Williams, whose All-Star snub had infuriated the Cavs, scored 19 and James finished with 12 assists and eight rebounds. Odom, who added a season-best 17 rebounds, was unstoppable in the third, when the Lakers outscored the Cavaliers 31-16 and turned a 10-point deficit into a 82-77 lead entering the fourth.

The AP reports: Roger Mason pulled up and leaned into a 3-pointer with 20.4 seconds left to give San Antonio the lead, then hit a pair of free throws after Manu Ginobili hit four as the Spurs pulled away from the Celtics. Tim Duncan scored 23 points with 13 rebounds and Matt Bonner had 23 points—the second-most in his career— including 3-of-6 from 3-point range… Ginobili scored 19 points off the bench, playing more than 31 minutes after sitting out Tuesday’s game against Denver with a bruised hip… Kevin Garnett scored 26 points with 12 rebounds, Paul Pierce had 19 and eight and Rajon Rondo had 16 assists for Boston.

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