Archive for January 4th, 2013

Bucks coach Scott Skiles said Ekpe Udoh will return to the starting lineup Friday night against the Houston Rockets.

Udoh will replace Marquis Daniels, who has started 16 games at small forward.

The Bucks will start Udoh, Larry Sanders and Luc Richard Mbah a Moute on the front line with Monta Ellis and Brandon Jennings in the backcourt.

“It allows me to get Luc on (James) Harden,” Skiles said in his pre-game remarks. “And also with Beno coming back and maybe not being 100%, we may need Marquis a little more in the backcourt.”

Backup point guard Beno Udrih will be available after being held out of Wednesday’s game with a sprained right ankle.

– Reported by Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Eric Gordon will play more minutes Saturday

New Orleans Hornets Coach Monty Williams said shooting guard  Eric Gordon continues to show signs that he is becoming more game ready and they will proceed with plans to increase his minutes slightly on Saturday against the Dallas Mavericks.

Williams said Gordon had a productive practice Friday after sitting out Wednesday night’s game against the Houston Rockets to avoid having him play his first back-to-back game too soon since returning last week after missing the first 29 games of the season.

“He’s getting more and more game ready,” Williams said.

– Reported by John Reid of the New Orleans Times Picayune

Daequan Cook to sign with Bulls

Daequan Cook to sign with Bulls

Free-agent shooting specialist Daequan Cook will sign with the Chicago Bulls after clearing waivers Friday, according to his agent.

Agent Mike Conley Sr. of BDA Sports told ESPN.com that Cook has agreed to join the Bulls after going unclaimed through the NBA’s waiver process this week.

Despite a number of teams out there that could use an extra shooter — such as Minnesota and the Los Angeles Lakers, just to name two — Cook went unclaimed after being waived by Houston because any interested team would have had to have sufficient salary-cap space or a big enough cap exception to absorb Cook’s $3.1 million salary.

– Reported by Marc Stein of ESPN.com

The Boston Celtics have re-assigned rookie forward Kris Joseph to the Maine Red Claws, Boston’s NBA Development League affiliate. The assignment is the record 95 th of the 2012-13 NBA and NBA D-League seasons, while Joseph is one of a record 46 NBA players to have been assigned this season.

Joseph (6-7, 210, Syracuse) has appeared in six games for Boston this season, averaging 1.2 points and 4.0 minutes. In eight games over four previous assignments to the Red Claws, Joseph averaged 19.5 points and 6.1 rebounds.

Joseph is expected to be in Maine today and available to play when the Red Claws host the Erie BayHawks at 7 p.m. ET.

The Oklahoma City Thunder today re-assigned rookie forward Perry Jones, guard/forward Jeremy Lamb and center Daniel Orton to the Tulsa 66ers, the Thunders’ NBA Development League affiliate. The assignments are a record 91 st , 92 nd and 93 rd of the 2012-13 NBA and NBA D-League seasons, and are three of a record 46 NBA players to have been assigned to the NBA D-League this season.

Jones (6-11, 235, Baylor) has appeared in 12 games for Oklahoma City this season while recording averages of 1.6 points and 1.3 rebounds and 6.7 minutes. In his previous stints with Tulsa, Jones averaged 14.7 points and 4.8 rebounds in six games.

Lamb (6-5, 180, Connecticut) has played in 13 games for the Thunder this season, averaging 1.9 points and 3.8 minutes. In three previous assignments to the 66ers, he averaged 23.0 points and 4.9 rebounds.

Orton (6-10, 255, Kentucky) has made one appearance for the Thunder this season scoring two points in two minutes. Earlier this season he played in 11 games on assignment for the 66ers and averaged 10.9 points and 7.5 rebounds.

All three players are expected to join the 66ers today and be available when the team hosts the Idaho Stampede tonight in Tulsa at 8 p.m. ET.

The San Antonio Spurs today announced that they have assigned guard Nando De Colo to the Austin Toros of the NBA Development League.

This marks De Colo’s second assignment to the Toros this season. In one game for Austin on Dec. 2, the guard posted 14 points, 8 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals in 39 minutes in a 97-82 win over the Idaho Stampede.

De Colo has appeared in 30 games this season for the Spurs, averaging 3.9 points, 1.7 assists and 1.7 rebounds in 11.9 minutes.

Royce White

Houston Rockets first-round pick Royce White would like to play for the team, but until Houston and the league come up with a protocol for treating mental health, White said his chances of never playing in the NBA are “very high.”

By the same token, White does not blame the Rockets for the mental health care impasse that has kept him from playing.

“The reality is that it is not Houston’s fault,” White said on SiriusXM’s “Off the Dribble” show. “As much as we always want to try and blame one side or the other … they’ve been thrown into a position now where they’re forced to make things up as they go because a protocol has not been put in place for mental health up until this point.”

White, the 16th overall pick in the June draft who played well in Summer League but has yet to play in a regular-season NBA game, has a well-known fear of flying, part of a larger anxiety disorder. He and the team have been working with experts to devise an appropriate treatment plan, likely to include some travel by bus or car instead of on the team plane. Repeatedly White has resisted the team’s directives to spend time with the Rockets’ D-League affiliate, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.

– Reported by Henry Abbott of ESPN.com

Darrell Arthur

The last time Darrell Arthur found himself in this position, he was running around high school gymnasiums in the Dallas area.

Arthur last played small forward when his prep coach wanted to overwhelm an opponent by using a big lineup.

“I’d take my man into the post (on offense) and we’d play 1-3-1 (zone) on defense,” Arthur said, smiling. “I haven’t played it since.”

Arthur has been thrown a lot of curve balls with injuries during his NBA career. He admits having fun hacking away at this slider — playing the three spot behind Rudy Gay with usual reserve Quincy Pondexter out with a knee injury.

“I’m doing a decent job,” Arthur said.

Hollins agrees, though he clearly would rather add another player to the roster so Arthur can spend most of his time at his natural position of power forward.

– Reported by Ronald Tillery of the Memphis Commercial Appeal

Known for getting rings, Phil Jackson finally has given one as well.

The retired coach, who won 11 NBA titles with the Los Angeles Lakers and Chicago Bulls, is engaged to longtime girlfriend and Lakers executive Jeanie Buss.

Buss posted a picture Thursday night on her official Twitter account of her left hand with a diamond ring on her finger.

The accompanying tweet read ”Twitter family - Phil finally gave me that ring I wanted!” followed by a smiley face.

– Reported by the Associated Press

jose juan barea

Not even a sprained finger to their All-Star forward could spoil this win for the Minnesota Timberwolves.

And it definitely made up for the clunker they turned in the night before - as much as it can, anyway.

J.J. Barea scored 12 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter while Kevin Love sat on the bench with an injured finger, lifting Minnesota to a 101-97 win over the Denver Nuggets on Thursday night.

The Timberwolves were playing for the second straight night, but fatigue hardly appeared to be a factor as they handed the Nuggets a rare home loss…

”It was good to hit some shots. We’ve been struggling to hit shots as a team,” Ridnour said. ”To be able to get going like that feels good.”

Especially with Love only able to watch after leaving with a sprained finger on his right hand in the third quarter. Love broke the same hand in October, missing the opening nine games of the season, and has struggled to get on track with his jumper ever since.

On the play in which he was injured, Love appeared to be sliding past a Nuggets player in the lane when he suddenly clutched at his hand before heading into the training room. Love had 12 points and 17 rebounds in nearly 24 minutes…

The Timberwolves were without point guard Ricky Rubio, who has been dealing with back spasms and remained in Minnesota during the two-game swing through Utah and Denver.

– Reported by Pat Graham of the Associated Press

carmelo anthony

Sometime between Stephen Jackson’s sideline stumble and J.R. Smith’s soaring slam, the San Antonio Spurs realized this wasn’t their night.

Too much fatigue and way too much Knicks defense.

Carmelo Anthony scored 23 points, Smith kept up his surge with 20 and New York snapped San Antonio’s seven-game winning streak with a 100-83 victory Thursday night.

Steve Novak added 15 points and Tyson Chandler had 10 points and 14 rebounds to help the Knicks bounce back from consecutive losses by dominating the final period against the Spurs, who appeared to run out of gas in their second game in two nights.

”They shot the hell out of it and I could see it wasn’t going to happen,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. ”Just too low on fuel and their defense was too good. Bad combination, and then they made shots, which makes it even worse.”

Tim Duncan and Tony Parker each had just 11 points for the Spurs, who lost Jackson to an unusual injury, then lost what had been the NBA’s longest winning streak.

Jackson played just three minutes off the bench before spraining his right ankle when he took a shot then fell back into a waitress working the sideline in front of Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Smith, who had scored 25 points in his last four games as a reserve, highlighted his outing with an acrobatic dunk in the fourth quarter that brought fans to their feet. The lobbed pass came from reserve point guard Pablo Prigioni, who had one of his most complete games since coming to the NBA at age 35, finishing with six points and nine assists.

– Reported by Brian Mahoney of the Associated Press

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