Archive for December 14th, 2012

Hornets forward Jason Smith out at least two weeks

After missing time earlier this year with a left shoulder strain, New Orleans Hornets forward Jason Smith is now out for at least two weeks with a sprained right shoulder, the result of a play in the fourth quarter of Wednesday night’s 92-88 loss at the Oklahoma City Thunder.

With 10:01 to go in the fourth quarter, and the score tied at 62-62, Smith blocked a dunk attempt by Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant, incurring the injury.

“Jason won’t play; he’s got a shoulder injury that could keep him out for up to two weeks,” Hornets Coach Monty Williams said Friday night. “It’s not a great thing for our team, but in light of what’s going on in the world, we’re doing OK.”Williams said his front-line rotation for the foreseeable future will not change.

– Reported by Jimmy Smith of the New Orleans Times-Picayune

Shawne Williams arrested in Raleigh on drug charges

Former Memphis Tigers basketball star and NBA player Shawne Williams was arrested Thursday in Raleigh after police reported finding marijuana and codeine cough syrup in his car.

An officer was on routine patrol outside a Cricket wireless store in the 3400 block of Austin Peay near the Raleigh Springs Mall. The officer approached Williams in his nearby Porsche Panamera after smelling marijuana, according to a police affidavit, and the 26-year-old Williams was asked to exit his vehicle.

Williams then said, “Officer I ain’t gonna lie to you, there’s a blunt in the car and some syrup,” according to the affidavit.

Police reported finding inside the car a partially smoked marijuana blunt, another blunt that had not been smoked, and a bottle containing 83 grams of codeine cough syrup, for which Williams did not have a prescription.

– Reported by Scott Carroll of the Memphis Commercial Appeal

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced that guard Malcolm Lee has suffered a chrondal injury in his right knee and will be out indefinitely. Lee and the organization are in the process of further evaluating the injury to determine the next steps for treatment. Once a determination is made, an update to his status will be provided. The injury occurred in the second quarter of Minnesota’s 108-105 win vs. Denver on Wednesday night.

Lee, a second-year guard from UCLA, is averaging 4.9 points and 2.4 rebounds in 18.1 minutes per game this season. He has started 12 of the last 13 games for Minnesota and has appeared in 16 games overall. Lee scored a career-high 10 points at Philadelphia on Dec. 4.

The Houston Rockets today re-assigned rookies Donatas Motiejunas and Terrence Jones to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, the Rockets’ NBA Development League affiliate. The assignments are the 51st and 52nd of the 2012-13 NBA and NBA D-League seasons, while Motiejunas and Jones are two of 34 NBA players to have been assigned to the NBA D-League this season.

Motiejunas (7-0, 222, Kaunas, Lithuania) returns to the Vipers having played in two games for the team in November, averaging 24.0 points, 9.5 rebounds and 37.0 minutes. Originally selected in the first round (20th overall) by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the 2011 NBA Draft and later traded to Houston, Motiejunas has appeared in four games for the Rockets this season, scoring three points in 10 minutes.

Jones (6-9, 252, Kentucky) rejoins the Vipers following a two-game assignment earlier in the season. In those two games he averaged 22.5 points, 17.5 rebounds, 1.0 block and 36.0 minutes. Jones has appeared in eight games for the Rockets this season, averaging 4.3 points, 2.1 rebounds and 10.0 minutes. Selected in the first round (18th overall) of the 2012 NBA Draft by the Rockets, Jones averaged 14.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.8 blocks in 76 career games for the Wildcats. A member of the 2012 NCAA Championship team, Jones earned Second-Team All-SEC honors last season and was selected the SEC Freshman of the Year in 2010-11.

Motiejunas and Jones are expected to join the Vipers today and be available on Saturday, Dec. 15 when the team travels to face the Texas Legends at 8:00 p.m. ET.

The Portland Trail Blazers have assigned forwards Victor Claver and Joel Freeland to the Idaho Stampede of the NBA Development League, it was announced today by Trail Blazers General Manager Neil Olshey.

The two players will join the Stampede today, Dec. 14, and will be active in advance of the team’s contests against the Santa Cruz Warriors tonight and tomorrow, Dec. 15, in Boise.

Claver played with the Stampede on Dec. 7 and 8, posting averages of 11.5 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.0 assist, 1.00 steal and 33.5 minutes in the two contests. Claver has appeared in six games with Portland this season, and averages 0.8 points, 1.5 rebounds, 0.5 assists and 10.2 minutes per contest. Claver was selected by the Trail Blazers with the 22nd pick in the 2009 NBA Draft, and signed with Portland on July 11, 2012.

In 12 games this year with the Trail Blazers, Freeland is averaging 2.2 points, 1.8 rebounds, 0.4 assists and 10.2 minutes per game. Freeland signed with Portland on July 13, 2012, after being selected by the Trail Blazers with the 30th pick in the 2006 NBA Draft.

The Oklahoma City Thunder today re-assigned Daniel Orton and Jeremy Lamb to the Tulsa 66ers, the Thunder’s NBA Development League affiliate. The assignments are the 47th and 48th of the 2012-13 NBA and NBA D-League seasons, while the players are among 33 NBA players to have been assigned to the NBA D-League this season.

Lamb (6-5, 180, Connecticut) rejoins Tulsa having played in five games for the 66ers on assignment this season, averaging 22.2 points, 5.4 rebounds and 37.8 minutes. In eight games for the Thunder this season, Lamb is averaging 2.1 points and 4.3 minutes.

Orton (6-10, 255, Kentucky) returns to the 66ers having played in seven games for the team on assignment, averaging 11.3 points, 8.1 rebounds and 31.0 minutes. The first GATORADE Call-Up of the 2012-13 NBA D-League season, Orton has appeared in one game for the Thunder this season, scoring two points in two minutes.

Lamb and Orton are expected to join Tulsa today and be available to play when the 66ers travel to play the Bakersfield Jam at 9 p.m. ET.

Damian Lillard scores 29, Blazers beat Spurs

Rookie guard Damian Lillard had a career-high 29 points and the Portland Trail Blazers handed the San Antonio Spurs their second straight loss with a 98-90 victory Thursday night.

The Spurs, who have lost only six games this season, trailed by as many as 12 points in the second half but Manu Ginobili’s layup cut the deficit to 89-85. J.J. Hickson answered for the Blazers with a running hook that made it 91-85 with 2:36 left.

Danny Green hit a 3-pointer to pull the Spurs closer again, but Portland clung to the lead and Nicolas Batum—who has been bothered by a sore back— made a 3 that gave Portland a 96-90 advantage with 1:08 left. Batum hit two free throws with 8 seconds to go for the final margin.

It was Lillard’s 13th game this season with 20 or more points. LaMarcus Aldridge added 22 points for the Blazers and Hickson finished with 12 points and 12 rebounds.

Tony Parker had 21 points for the Spurs, who were coming off a 99-96 loss at Utah on Wednesday night that snapped a five-game winning streak…

The Blazers were without starter Wesley Matthews for the second straight game…

– Reported by Anne M. Peterson of the Associated Press

carmelo anthony

Carmelo Anthony scored 22 of his 30 points in the first quarter, and the New York Knicks held on after he departed with a sprained left ankle to beat the Los Angeles Lakers 116-107 on Thursday night in coach Mike D’Antoni’s return to Madison Square Garden.

Firing in 3-pointers and moving the ball to open shooters, things they often struggled to do under D’Antoni, the Knicks won for the eighth time in nine games and improved to 9-0 at home for the first time since the 1992-93 season.

Meanwhile, things are starting as poorly for D’Antoni in Los Angeles as they ended in New York. The Lakers, still without Steve Nash and Pau Gasol, were never really in the game while losing their fourth straight and falling to 9-14.

Raymond Felton scored 19 points, and Tyson Chandler and J.R. Smith added 18 apiece for the Knicks.

Kobe Bryant had 31 points and 10 rebounds for the Lakers. Metta World Peace finished with 23 points and Dwight Howard had 20.

The Lakers did cut what was a 26-point deficit to 113-107 when World Peace converted a three-point play with 1:27 remaining, but the Knicks took more than a minute off the clock while twice grabbing offensive rebounds on the next possession before Chandler made a free throw with 18 seconds to play…

D’Antoni was loudly booed during pregame introductions, Knicks fans who appreciated the rugged defensive teams of the 1990s never truly embracing his offense-first style. D’Antoni said he enjoyed his time in New York and said earlier Thursday the Knicks, who lead the NBA in 3-pointers per game and fewest turnovers, were playing the way he’d like his team to play.

– Reported by Brian Mahoney of the Associated Press

devin harris

Kyle Korver thinks the Atlanta Hawks have been too hesitant to beat a struggling opponent decisively.

That wasn’t the case this time.

Devin Harris scored 20 points, Josh Smith added 18 and the surging Hawks beat Charlotte 113-90 on Thursday night to hand the Bobcats their 10th straight defeat.

”I think mentally, in the locker room, we just decided that we were going to do it,” Korver said. ”It’s easy to let up when you’ve got a lead and you’re trying to create some energy, and we’ve done that several times.”

Gerald Henderson finished with 17 points and Ramon Sessions had 16 for Charlotte.

The Hawks are 12-3 since losing three of their first five games this season. Atlanta, which moved into a first-place tie with Miami in the Southeast Division, has won two straight and five of six…

Lou Williams had eight of his nine assists in the first half for Atlanta. Williams, who finished with 13 points, matched his career high in assists, and Ivan Johnson added a season-high 16 points.

Hawks center Al Horford finished with 11 points and three rebounds, ending his streak of seven consecutive double-doubles…

Hawks starting F DeShawn Stevenson scored nine points after missing Wednesday’s win at Orlando with a knee injury.

– Reported by George Henry of the Associated Press

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