Archive for March 10th, 2009

NBA suspends Lamar Odom one game

Lamar Odom of the Los Angeles Lakers has been suspended one game without pay for leaving the immediate vicinity of the bench during an altercation, it was announced today by Stu Jackson, NBA Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations.

The incident occurred with two seconds remaining in the third quarter of the Portland Trail Blazers’ 111-94 victory over the Lakers at Rose Garden in Portland last night.

Odom will serve his suspension tomorrow night when the Lakers face the Houston Rockets at Toyota Center.

NBA rules state that players who are benched at the time of an altercation must stay there.

A Lakers-Rockets matchup is always worth watching. Houston has done very well despite not having aging star shooting guard Tracy McGrady, and Los Angeles has looked terrific despite not having young-and-upcoming, starting center Andrew Bynum.

Without Odom, some responsibility to step up falls on the shoulders of Ariza, Josh Powell and DJ Mbenga.

Indiana Pacers have financial problems

The Indianapolis Star (Brendan O’Shaughnessy) reports: The Indiana Pacers are losing about $30 million this season and cannot continue to shoulder the millions of dollars it costs to operate Conseco Fieldhouse. That was the announcement Monday to the Capital Improvement Board from CIB Vice President Pat Early, who has been in discussions with team officials about the financial problems both organizations face. Operating Conseco Fieldhouse costs the Pacers roughly $15 million a year. If the team can’t make those payments, it would fall to the CIB, which already is struggling with a budget shortfall of $20 million this year.

InsideHoops.com editor says: Pacers fans don’t go see their team play. Indiana gets under 14,000 fans per home game. If I owned the team, I’d probably be looking to move or sell right about now. Though, with the current rough economy it’s hard to pull off any of that.

Eduardo Najera done for season

The New York Daily News (Julian Garcia) reports: The Nets found out Monday that they’ll have to go the rest of the season without Eduardo Najera. The veteran forward, who signed with the Nets in the offseason, has a sports hernia and will have surgery sometime over the next week or so. Frank said Najera would not be ready for at least six to 10 weeks, meaning the Nets would have to advance deep into the postseason for him to have a chance to play again. In 27 games, Najera averaged 2.9 points and 2.5 rebounds. He hadn’t played since Jan.31.

The AP reports: Rudy Fernandez was injured when he was fouled hard late in the third quarter of Portland’s 111-94 victory Monday night. He was taken from the court strapped to a stretcher, his neck in a brace. “Just the way it played out—it’s hard to watch your teammate over there laying down and they’re bringing out stretchers. That was a tough moment for all of us,” said Brandon Roy, who led the Blazers with 27 points… Travis Outlaw had 22 points for the Blazers, who have won 12 straight at the Rose Garden. Joel Przybilla added 12 points and 18 rebounds, while LaMarcus Aldridge had 16 points and 13 rebounds. Kobe Bryant had 26 points, while Pau Gasol had 18 for the Lakers, who haven’t won at the Rose Garden in their last seven tries, with their last victory on Feb. 23, 2005.

The AP reports: The Denver Nuggets are starting to see the storm clouds closing in on them. Even the brief return of Kenyon Martin from a bad back couldn’t snap them out of their funk as the Nuggets lost for the eighth time in 11 games Monday night, this time 97-95 to the Houston Rockets… Denver had a chance to tie idle Utah atop the Northwest Division after losing their grip on first place 24 hours earlier with a disheartening loss at Sacramento. But they fell behind by 19 points in the third quarter and couldn’t overcome big games by Ron Artest (22 points) and Aaron Brooks (19)… Nene shot 4-for-15, falling behind Shaquille O’Neal for the league lead in shooting percentage.

The AP reports: Caron Butler had 27 points, 10 rebounds and six assists to lead the Wizards to a 110-99 victory over the Timberwolves on Monday night in a matchup of teams that had lost 14 straight combined. Antawn Jamison added 26 points for the Wizards, who had lost five in a row and seven of their last eight… Kevin Love had 16 points and 11 rebounds and Ryan Gomes scored 18 for the Timberwolves, who have lost 10 in a row and 15 of their last 16… Guard Randy Foye had to be carried to the locker room in the fourth quarter with a sprained right ankle. He went up to grab a high lob pass from Mike Miller, but crumpled to the court in pain.

The AP reports: Kwame Brown, who has struggled since being the No. 1 overall pick in the 2001 draft, had 10 points and played 26 minutes of tough defense against Dwight Howard as Detroit beat the Orlando Magic 98-94. He stepped up after Rasheed Wallace left with a first-quarter injury… Richard Hamilton led Detroit with 29 points and a career-high 14 assists, while Antonio McDyess had a season-high 18 rebounds… Howard had 27 points and 14 rebounds for Orlando, which has lost 19 of its last 24 regular-season meetings with the Pistons, and been eliminated by Detroit in each of the last two postseasons.

The AP reports: Dwyane Wade’s 3-pointer at the end of the first half was desperation. The one in the final seconds of regulation, dramatic. And the one that finally ended the game, unbelievable. Miami’s MVP candidate stole the ball from John Salmons with 3 seconds left, then made a running 3-pointer as time expired to lift the Heat to a wild 130-127 double-overtime win over the Chicago Bulls on Monday night… Wade—who finished with 48 points and 12 assists in nearly 50 minutes, shooting 15-for-21 from the field—made a 3-pointer at the end of the first half, then another with 11.5 seconds left in regulation… Michael Beasley had 18 points, Mario Chalmers added 17 and Jamario Moon scored 13 for the Heat, who stayed within 1 1/2 games of Atlanta for the No. 4 spot in the Eastern Conference playoff chase. Ben Gordon scored a season-high 43 points for the Bulls, including eight 3-pointers. Salmons scored 29 and Derrick Rose added 23 for the Bulls, who are 0-3 against Miami this season and used only seven players Monday.

The AP reports: Joe Johnson showed he’s willing to step up if the Atlanta Hawks will be without Marvin Williams for a significant period of time. Johnson scored 30 points and the Hawks beat New Orleans 89-79 on Monday night, ending the Hornets’ season-best seven-game winning streak… Josh Smith had 13 points and 13 rebounds for Atlanta, while Flip Murray had 14 points and Bibby added 10… Chris Paul had 24 points and 10 assists and David West also had a double-double with 16 points and 20 rebounds for New Orleans. Rasual Butler added 18 points for the Hornets.

Rudy Fernandez injury update

Portland Trail Blazers guard Rudy Fernandez sustained a soft tissue injury to his right upper chest and side area in the third quarter of Monday night’s game vs. the Los Angeles Lakers.  X-Rays and CT scan were both negative.

The injury happened at the end of the third quarter as he went up at the rim but was fouled by Trevor Ariza, who was issued a flagrant-2 for his excessive contact.

Fernandez will be kept overnight at an area hospital for observation.  He is listed as questionable for Wednesday’s game vs. the Dallas Mavericks.

In 25.9 minutes per game this season, Fernandez is averaging 10.5 points and 2.9 rebounds on 41.8% shooting.

Details about what led to his injury are here.

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