LeBron leads Heat over Magic in OT

lebron james

LeBron James had 36 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds, and Chris Bosh scored 22 points to help the Miami Heat slip past the Orlando Magic 112-110 in overtime Monday.

James scored eight points in overtime, including two free throws that clinched it with 1.5 seconds left. Dwayne Wade, who had 21 points, had a steal and dunk with 6.2 seconds to go to give Miami a four-point lead.

Arron Afflalo scored 28 points for the Magic and J.J. Redick added 23, but he committed the turnover that led to Wade’s decisive dunk. Nikola Vucevic had 20 points and 29 rebounds as Orlando lost its sixth straight.

— Reported by the Associated Press

Paul George leads Pacers over Grizzlies

Paul George

The Indiana Pacers are now finding ways to win on a regular basis with or without veteran players.

”I’m proud of them and the effort to be a really good basketball team,” Pacers coach Frank Vogel said.

Paul George scored 21 points to lead the Pacers to an 88-83 win over the Memphis Grizzlies on Monday.

D.J. Augustin had 17 points and David West added 13 points and nine rebounds for the Pacers, who have won five of six. George also had six rebounds and five assists.

Zach Randolph had 21 points and 15 rebounds and Marc Gasol scored 13 for the Grizzlies, who have lost three of four…

Still without star forward Danny Granger and with the injured Hill on the bench and even without center Roy Hibbert putting up the expected numbers, Indiana remains atop the Central Division and now a game up on the Chicago Bulls…

[Lance] Stephenson was listed as day to day with a left orbital contusion, but started. … Grizzlies F Quincy Pondexter didn’t travel with the team because of a left MCL sprain. … Hibbert’s first offensive rebound of the night was his 800th career.

— Reported by the Associated Press

Bobcats end 18-game losing streak with win over Bulls

Kemba Walker

Squandering a healthy lead is nothing new to the Charlotte Bobcats – hanging onto one is.

Kemba Walker had 18 points and eight rebounds, and the Bobcats ended an 18-game losing streak with a 91-81 win over the Chicago Bulls on Monday.

Gerald Henderson added 16 points and reserve Ben Gordon had 15 to help Charlotte snap the second-longest skid in team history. It was the Bobcats’ first win in their last 10 road games.

”We’re a desperate team right now,” Henderson said. ”This losing streak has been very tough on us.”

Luol Deng scored 20 points and grabbed 12 rebounds for Chicago. Carlos Boozer also had a double-double with 19 points and 14 boards.

Charlotte fended off several rallies by the Bulls, who never held a lead, to win for the first time since Nov. 24…

The new year couldn’t come quick enough for Charlotte (8-23), which narrowly avoided posting a 0-16 calendar month for the second time in 2012. The Bobcats went 0-16 in April to end last season on a franchise-worst 23-game losing streak.

The eight wins already surpasses Charlotte’s seven wins all of last season…

Bobcats F Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (scratched right cornea) did not play after being poked in the eye during a 98-95 loss to New Orleans on Saturday.

— Reported by Travis Miller of the Associated Press

Paul Harris named D-League Performer of Week

Paul Harris of the Iowa Energy was today named NBA Development League Performer of the Week for games played Dec. 24 – 30.

A 6-4, 230-pound forward out of Syracuse, Harris led the Energy to a three-win week, averaging 26.7 points on 60.8 percent shooting from the floor to go with 13.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 2.3 steals and 40.0 minutes.  He record 30-plus point outings on Dec. 25 against the Sioux Falls Skyforce and Los Angeles D-Fenders.

Other top performers considered include Austin’s Tre Kelley, Bakersfield’s Damion James, Canton’s Samardo Samuels, on assignment from the Cleveland Cavaliers, Erie’s Demonte Harper, Fort Wayne’s Luke Harangody, Idaho’s Justin Holiday, Los Angeles’ Darius Johnson-Odom, on assignment from the Los Angeles D-Fenders, Maine’s DaJuan Summers, Rio Grande Valley’s Terrence Jones, Reno’s Darnell Jackson, Santa Cruz’s Jeremy Tyler, Sioux Falls’ Andrew Goudelock, Texas’ Sean Singletary and Tulsa’s Chris Quinn.

Warriors re-assign Kent Bazemore and Jeremy Tyler to D-League yet again

The Golden State Warriors have re-assigned guard/forward Kent Bazemore and forward/center Jeremy Tyler to the Santa Cruz Warriors of the NBA Development League, the team announced today.  Both players are slated to join Golden State’s D-League affiliate in time for the team’s home game tomorrow afternoon in Santa Cruz against the Sioux Falls Skyforce at Kaiser Permanente Arena (2:00 p.m. tipoff).

Bazemore, 23, has appeared in 16 games with Golden State this season, registering 10 points in 26 total minutes.  He has previously been assigned to Santa Cruz three times this season, averaging 23.7 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 5.00 steals and 34.3 minutes in three games.

Tyler, 21, has appeared in 11 games for Golden State this season, averaging 1.1 points in 2.4 minutes per contest.  He has previously been assigned to Santa Cruz three times this season, averaging 14.0 points, 9.7 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.00 steal and 30.0 minutes in three games.

Tyreke Evans knee injury update

Tyreke Evans

Sacramento Kings guard Tyreke Evans will visit with Dr. Steve Lombardo in Los Angeles on Wednesday (1/2/13) morning to receive a second opinion on his sore left knee, according to Sacramento Kings President of Basketball Operations Geoff Petrie.

Evans, who did not travel with the team on its current four-game road trip starting in Detroit on New Year’s Day, is averaging 15.1 ppg (.453 FG%, .300 3pt%, .792 FT%), 4.8 rpg, 3.3 apg, 1.28 spg, and 30.9 mpg in 18 games this season.

Grizzlies recall guard Tony Wroten from D-League

Tony Wroten

The Memphis Grizzlies recalled guard Tony Wroten from the NBA Development League’s Reno Bighorns, Grizzlies General Manager and Vice President of Basketball Operations Chris Wallace announced today.

Wroten (6-6, 208) averaged 14.5 points, 2.0 rebounds and 5.0 assists on .545 shooting in 29.5 minutes in two games (both starts) for Reno after being re-assigned to the Bighorns on Dec. 26.  The 19-year-old has recorded 13.6 points, 2.8 rebounds and 3.8 assists on .411 shooting in 24.5 minutes in eight games (two starts) over two assignments with Reno this season.

The Seattle native will join the Grizzlies for their road contest against the Indiana Pacers at 2 p.m. CT today at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Drafted by Memphis in the first round (25th overall) of the 2012 NBA Draft after one season at the University of Washington, Wroten has totaled eight minutes in three appearances for the Grizzlies during his rookie season.

Monta Ellis, Greivis Vasquez named NBA Players of Week

Monta Ellis

Milwaukee Bucks guard Monta Ellis and New Orleans Hornets guard Greivis Vasquez today were named Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for games played Monday, Dec. 24, through Sunday, Dec. 30.

Ellis led the Bucks to a 2-1 week, including wins over the Brooklyn Nets on Dec. 26 and Miami Heat on Dec. 29, with averages of 21.3 points (tied for seventh in the Conference), 8.3 assists (fourth in the Conference) and 4.0 steals (first in the Conference). Ellis had a 30-point game against the Detroit Pistons on Dec. 30 and tallied five-or-more steals against both the Nets and Heat.

Greivis Vasquez

Vasquez, who averaged a double-double with 21.0 points and a league leading 10.0 assists, led the Hornets to a 2-1 week which included wins over the Orlando Magic on Dec. 26 and the Charlotte Bobcats on Dec. 29. He also led the Western Conference in minutes per game, playing 41.7 per contest. In New Orleans’ lone loss, 104-97 to the Toronto Raptors on Dec. 28, Vasquez fell one rebound shy of a triple-double, finishing the game with 20 points, 14 assists and nine rebounds.

Other nominees for the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week were Atlanta’s Al Horford and Jeff Teague, Brooklyn’s Brook Lopez, Denver’s Danilo Gallinari, Detroit’s Will Bynum, Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul, Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant, Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant, Portland’s LaMarcus Aldridge and San Antonio’s Tony Parker.

Timberwolves sign forward Lazar Hayward

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced the team has signed free-agent forward Lazar Hayward.

Hayward, drafted by the Washington Wizards in the first round (30th overall) of the 2010 NBA Draft, was originally acquired by Minnesota in a draft night trade on June 24, 2010. In 2010-11, he appeared in 42 games as a rookie with the Wolves and finished with averages of 3.8 ppg, 1.7 rpg and 10.9 mpg. The 6-6 forward was traded to Oklahoma City on Dec. 13, 2011 for two future second-round draft picks. After spending one season with the Thunder, Hayward was traded to Houston on Oct. 27, 2012 and was released by the Rockets prior to the start of the 2012-13 NBA season. Hayward has appeared in 69 NBA regular-season games with Minnesota (2010-11) and Oklahoma City (2011-12), posting averages of 2.9 points and 1.3 rebounds in 8.2 minutes per game.

Hayward played collegiately at Marquette University where he started 118 of 138 games, and averaged 13.5 points and 6.6 rebounds while shooting 45.2 percent from the field and 35.7 percent from behind the arc. The second all-time leading scorer in Marquette history with 1,859 career points, Hayward played in a school-record 138 games and earned Second Team All-Big East and Honorable Mention AP All-American honors as a senior.

Cavs recall Samardo Samuels from D-League

The Cleveland Cavaliers have recalled forward Samardo Samuels from the Canton Charge, the Cavaliers exclusively owned and operated NBA Development League team, Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant announced today from Cleveland Clinic Courts.

Samuels played in two games (both starts) for the Charge, averaging 20.5 points on .567 shooting and 10.5 rebounds in 37.5 minutes per game, helping Canton win both games. Samuels has played in 18 games (one start) this season for the Cavs, averaging 3.2 points and 1.6 rebounds in 10.9 minutes per game.