Archive for February 10th, 2012

Bucks coach Scott Skiles ejected vs Cavs

Scott Skiles
Scott Skiles
Doesn’t like nonsense

Milwaukee Bucks coach Scott Skiles has been ejected in the third quarter against Cleveland after picking up two technical fouls within seconds.

Skiles was complaining to referee John Goble, who whistled him for his first technical with 2:46 left in the third quarter—after Mike Dunleavy was called for a blocking foul. Skiles walked onto the floor and took a few steps toward Goble, who quickly tossed the coach. Skiles punched the air before he was assessed the second technical.

– Reported by the Associated Press

Josh Smith
Josh Smith
Can dunk on your entire family

Hawks forward Josh Smith looks at the reserves voted to the Eastern Conference All-Star team and figures there must be behind-the-scenes forces that explain why some of the players made the team ahead of him.

“You’ve got to factor in there is a lot of politics involved in the All-Star selection,” Smith said Friday. “Once you get that it’s really about politics, then nothing really surprises you. I call it ‘Nothing But Associates,’ NBA. It’s all who you know.”

Coaches vote for the All-Star reserves, so there is the potential for lobbying by fellow coaches, other team personnel, and player agents. For example, Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle reportedly lobbied coaches to vote for forward Dirk Nowitzki, who was selected for the team even after he had said he didn’t deserve it.

Smith said “I guess I don’t know the right people” and didn’t have people lobbying on his behalf.

– Reported by Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Kevin Love
Kevin Love
Beats suckers down

Kevin Love’s return from a two-game suspension means the Minnesota Timberwolves are regaining their leading scorer and rebounder, and losing a 6-foot-9 cheerleader.

Love was suspended for stepping on Rockets forward Luis Scola last weekend. He missed a win over Sacramento on Tuesday and a loss at Memphis, reducing the two-time All-Star to a role he wasn’t used to playing while he watched the games from his couch at his downtown Minneapolis home.

“I felt like I almost needed some pom-poms I was cheering so loud,” Love said on Friday morning after the team’s shootaround in preparation for the game against Dallas on Friday night.

Love is averaging 25 points and 13.7 rebounds this season. He also leads the NBA with 39.4 minutes per game. Rookie Derrick Williams started in Love’s place the previous two games and delivered two solid performances, but certainly not to the level the Wolves expect from Love.

– Reported by Jon Krawczynski of the Associated Press

Kevin Love
Kevin Love
Wants to do it all

Western Conference coaches on Thursday invited Timberwolves forward Kevin Love to his second NBA All-Star Game, one year after Commissioner David Stern named him as an injury replacement for his first.

“It definitely feels different,” Love said on Thursday evening.

It feels different because his team has won more times in 24 games during this lockout-shortened season than it did in the first 48 games a year ago.

It feels different because he had an “inkling” coaches would select him and because he was invited Thursday morning to appear on TNT’s announcement show hours later that night.

He’ll also soon accept an offer to participate in All-Star weekend’s three-point shooting contest.

– Reported by Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star Tribune

Ben Uzoh

The Cleveland Cavaliers have signed guard Ben Uzoh from the Rio Grande Valley Vipers of the NBA Development League to a 10-day contract, Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant announced today. The signing of Uzoh marks the 22nd NBA Call-Up of the 2011-12 season. Uzoh will wear No. 6 for the Cavaliers and is available for tonight’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks.

In 12 games (all starts), Uzoh has averaged 16.8 points on .525 shooting, 6.5 rebounds, 4.4 assists and 1.8 steals in 34.4 minutes per game with the Vipers. The 6-foot-3, 205-pound point guard was named the D-League Performer of the Week for games played Jan. 16-22 after averaging 22.3 points on .651 shooting, 8.3 assists and 7.3 rebounds in 37.0 minutes and leading Rio Grande Valley to a perfect 3-0 week. He scored a season-high 31 points to go with 10 assists for his first double-double of the season in a 116-104 road win over the Reno Bighorns on Jan. 21.

The 23-year-old from Tulsa spent the 2010-11 season with the New Jersey Nets, playing in 42 games and posting averages of 3.8 points on .424 shooting, 1.5 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 10.4 minutes per game.

Andrea Bargnani
Andrea Bargnani
Not a rebounder

The Toronto Raptors will be without Andrea Bargnani for the foreseeable future.

Having already missed 14 games this year because of a strained calf — six in mid-January and eight more since re-injuring the left leg on Jan. 25 in Utah — Bargnani is poised to miss much more action. It would not be a surprise if he sat out until the all-star break, two weeks from now, although that is just an extrapolation of head coach Dwane Casey’s comments.

“His timeframe is extended, whether it is two weeks or three weeks, whatever it is,” Casey said Thursday afternoon after the team’s practice. “We’re not putting a day on it. Extended is beyond day to day, I think.”

– Reported by Eric Koreen of the National Post

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