Game 6: Hawks stay alive, beat Bucks 83-69

The AP reports:

Hawks stay alive, beat Bucks 83-69

Jamal Crawford saw the end to his series-long shooting slump coming, making a promise after the pregame shootaround: It’ll be back tonight.

Crawford then went out and finally played like the NBA’s sixth man of the year in the playoffs, scoring 24 points to help the Atlanta Hawks beat the Milwaukee Bucks 83-69 on Friday night to force a seventh game in the first-round series…

Carlos Delfino scored 20 for the Bucks, who came into the game hoping to finish off their heavily favored opponent but instead went completely flat coming out of halftime and couldn’t pull off a late rally attempt…

Brandon Jennings scored 12 points on 4-for-15 shooting, including 1 of 9 from 3-point range…

John Salmons finished with eight points on 2-for-13 shooting.

Joe Johnson scored 22 points, and Al Horford had 15 points and 15 rebounds for Atlanta.

2009-10 All-Rookie teams

Tyreke Evans of the Sacramento Kings, Brandon Jennings of the Milwaukee Bucks and Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors were unanimous selections to the 2009-10 NBA All-Rookie First Team, the NBA announced today.

Rounding out the NBA All-Rookie First Team are New Orleans’ Darren Collison (46 points) and Chicago’s Taj Gibson (41 points).

The NBA All-Rookie Second Team consists of New Orleans’ Marcus Thornton (31 points), San Antonio’s DeJuan Blair (30 points), Oklahoma City’s James Harden (22 points), Minnesota’s Jonny Flynn (22 points) and Detroit’s Jonas Jerebko (22 points).

More info and complete voting results here.

Rodrigue Beaubois refuses to complain about Game 6

Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News reports:

An off-season of second-guessing coach Rick Carlisle commenced during Game 6’s fourth quarter, as rookie guard Roddy Beaubois’ sat the bench despite playing a huge role in Dallas’ third-quarter comeback against the Spurs.

Rodrigue Beaubois refuses to complain about Game 6

But Beaubois insists he isn’t, and won’t be, among the second-guessers.

“Everybody told me to just try to be ready and when they called my name, I just played my game,” Beaubois said, after scoring 16 points in 20 mostly-electrifying minutes Thursday.

But when he was helping Dirk Nowitzki lead the Mavericks comeback, didn’t part of him think, “See, Coach, this is what I could have been doing all series”?

“You don’t think about it,” he said. “Like I said, it was coach’s decision. I think everybody tried to play very hard and did a good job. It’s OK. But when he called my name I just wanted to push myself and try to win the game. That’s it.”

Game 6: Suns eliminate Blazers, move on to face Spurs

The AP reports:

Suns eliminate Blazers, move on to face Spurs

Jason Richardson wanted to be the wild card in the playoffs for the Phoenix Suns.

So while the Portland Trail Blazers were focused on Amare Stoudemire and Steve Nash, Richardson came up big for the third time in the first-round series, scoring 28 points in a 99-90 Game 6 victory Thursday night…

Richardson had 29 points in the Suns’ 119-90 victory in Game 2 before scoring a career playoff-high 42 in a 108-89 win in Game 3…

Martell Webster had 19 points for Portland, which failed to advance out of the first round for the second straight year…

Amar’e Stoudemire finished with 22 points for the Suns, while Nash, who said afterward that he had been battling a hip injury since Game 2, had 10 points.

Brandon Roy had 14 points for the Blazers in his first start of the series.

Game 6: Spurs finish off No. 2 seed Mavs

The AP reports:

Spurs finish off No. 2 seed Mavs

Manu Ginobili scored 26 points and San Antonio survived blowing a 22-point lead to finish off the Mavericks 97-87 in Game 6 on Thursday night, getting payback after Dallas eliminated the Spurs a year ago in the opening round.

The seventh-seeded Spurs will play the sixth-seeded Suns in the Western Conference semifinals starting Monday night in Phoenix…

Dirk Nowitzki nearly carried the Mavs to an unbelievable comeback, getting 25 of his 33 points in a remarkable second half. But George Hill, the hero for the Spurs in Game 4, scored 10 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter to keep the series from going back to Dallas…

Caron Butler scored 25 points and rookie Rodrigue Beaubois had 16. But aside from them and Nowitzki, no other Dallas player scored more than six points…

Plagued by slow starts in this series, Dallas got off to its worst yet when it mattered most. The Mavs trailed 22-8 after the first quarter, hitting just four of their first 18 shots. By halftime it was 47-34, a franchise playoff low for Dallas.

Tyreke Evans wins Rookie of Year

Tyreke Evans of the Sacramento Kings is the recipient of the Eddie Gottlieb Trophy as the 2009-10 NBA Rookie of the Year, the NBA announced today.

He deserved it. This is an individual award, not a team award. And as an individual, Evans was pretty much the best first-year player in the league. Stephen Curry came on strong as the season progressed, and Brandon Jennings had more team success than either of them, but as an individual, Evans rocked.

Evans received 67 first-place votes (491 points) from a panel of 123 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. Golden State’s Stephen Curry finished second with 391 points and Milwaukee’s Brandon Jennings finished third with 204 points. Players were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote.

More info and full voting results here. And fan discussion is here.

Greg Oden expects to be ready for 2010-11 training camp

Brian T. Smith of the Columbian reports:

Greg Oden expects to be ready for training camp

Portland Trail Blazers center Greg Oden said Thursday he expects to be ready to participate in the Blazers’ 2010-11 training camp.

Oden, who is recovering from his second major surgery in three years, added that there is no timetable for his return, though.

But the No. 1 overall pick of the 2007 NBA Draft said his rehabilitation is on schedule. He suffered a season-ending injury when fractured his left patella Dec. 5 against Houston.

“A good day is when I can walk and not have no swelling,” said Oden, following a morning shootaround at the team’s practice facility. “A bad knee is when I have a little bit of swelling and I ice my knee. I’ve been using my bone stimulator a lot. Just doing little things to help.”

Nene has sprained left knee

Nuggets C Nene has a sprained left knee. An MRI this morning revealed no ligament or meniscus damage.

He will not travel to Utah and is listed as out for tomorrow night’s Game 6. He will subsequently be day-to-day.

This is great news for a Nuggets team that has struggled in their first round NBA playoff series against the Utah Jazz and needs all the help they can get in their frontcourt.

2010 Early Entry list

The National Basketball Association announced today that 103 players, including 80 players from U.S. colleges and 23 international players, have filed as early entry candidates for the 2010 NBA Draft.

Players wishing to enter the 2010 NBA Draft were required to submit a letter to the NBA to be received no later than Sunday, April 25. Players who have applied for early entry have the right to withdraw their names from consideration for the Draft by notifying the NBA of their decision in writing no later than 5 p.m. ET on Monday, June 14.

Complete list and more info here.

LeBron James elbow update

LeBron James elbow update

Cavaliers forward LeBron James underwent further evaluation at Cleveland Clinic Sports Health last evening by Cavaliers Head Team Physician Dr. Richard Parker and Dr. Mark Schickendantz. He was re-examined, with x-rays and MRI reviewed.

LeBron has a strain of his right elbow and a bone bruise of his olecranon. He will undergo daily treatments and revaluation and a repeat MRI will be performed next week.

It is not anticipated that he would miss any playing time. His status will be updated as appropriate.