Archive for February 16th, 2012

Utah Jazz, Paul Millsap in a slump

Paul Millsap

It’s a chicken-or-egg question.

Is Paul Millsap struggling because the Jazz are playing poorly as a team, or are the Jazz struggling because Millsap isn’t dominating games the way he did earlier this season?

One thing is clear.

Millsap’s numbers have dipped recently and the Jazz can’t afford that trend to continue — not if they want to remain in the Western Conference playoff race during the final 38 games of the season.

Heading into Friday night’s game against Washington at EnergySolutions Arena, Utah has lost five of its last six.

In those defeats, Millsap averages 10.2 points and nine rebounds.

Not bad.

On the other hand, Millsap made only 18 of his 50 field-goal attempts. He journeyed to the free-throw line seven times in 114 minutes.

– Reported by Steve Luhm of the Salt Lake Tribune

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No big Timberwolves trade expected

Pau Gasol
Pau Gasol
Was in Wolves-related rumors

The NBA trade deadline is March 15. Don’t expect a major deal, Timberwolves’ basketball president David Kahn says.

“The likelihood of us doing something dramatic is miniscule,” Kahn said after the Wolves’ victory over Charlotte on Wednesday night at Target Center that moved them to within two games of a playoff spot.

“That doesn’t mean that maybe we do something minor. But the last thing I want to do is send a message to our players that they should be looking over their shoulders right now.”

The Wolves (14-16) are just three victories away from their total of last season. A rumor that has resurfaced is the Lakers trading Pau Gasol to Minnesota. The Pioneer Press reported last month that the Lakers offered Gasol to the Wolves as part of a proposed trade for Kevin Love before Love signed a $62 million contract extension. The Wolves never considered the deal.

– Reported by Charley Walters of the St. Paul Pioneer Press

Allen Iverson
Allen Iverson
For 10 bucks, might play at your house

With hopes of getting one last shot in the NBA, former All-Star and league MVP Allen Iverson is contemplating playing minor league basketball, according to a person close to the situation.

Iverson is willing to play in the Caribbean, in South America or even in the D-League if it gives him a chance to return to the NBA, the source said.

“Allen only wants to play if there’s a possibility that it leads to the NBA,” the person said, speaking on condition of anonymity. “That’s the only way he would go to one of these lower leagues. He wants to get back to the NBA and leave the game on his terms.”

Iverson’s interest in returning comes as he faces some financial trouble. On Monday, a judge in Georgia garnished funds from Iverson’s bank account to repay about $860,000 that he owes a jeweler, according to multiple media reports.

– Reported by Chris Broussard of ESPN the Magazine

The New Orleans Hornets announced today that they have signed forward Lance Thomas to a second 10-day contract.

Thomas, a Duke University product, has appeared in seven games for the Hornets this season, averaging 2.0 points and 2.4 rebounds (1.6 offensive) in just under seven minutes per game. Thomas appeared in two regular season games with the Hornets before being released on December 31st, 2011, and in two preseason games with New Orleans (both starts), he averaged 3.5 points and 4.5 rebounds.

The 6’8” forward was originally re-signed by the Hornets to a 10-day contract February 6th from the Austin Toros of the NBA Development League. In 19 games (all starts) for the Toros this season, Thomas averaged 15.2 points, 7.7 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 32.6 minutes of play and was selected to the 2012 NBDL All-Star game. The Scotch Plains, New Jersey native also played for the Toros during the 2010-11 season, averaging 12.6 points and 5.5 rebounds in 46 games (all starts).

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