Archive for March 3rd, 2013

The Bulls’ charter plane experienced engine trouble roughly 20 minutes after takeoff and returned to Chicago late Saturday. Passengers heard a loud sound emanating from an engine, though most downplayed danger.

The Bulls’ traveling party went home late Saturday, borrowed the Blackhawks’ charter plane early Sunday and arrived in Indianapolis shortly before a lunch meeting and film session at the team hotel.

– Reported by K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune

Jeremy Evans makes most of rare playing time

When the Utah Jazz finally get healthy, coach Tyrone Corbin might have another player to consider for his big-man rotation.

Jeremy Evans has been the odd man out this season, playing behind Al Jefferson, Paul Millsap, Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter.

With Jefferson and Millsap injured, however, Evans played the best game of his three-year career Saturday night against Charlotte. He scored 14 points and grabbed nine rebounds in 26 minutes during the Jazz’s lopsided 98-68 victory.

For perspective, consider Evans played only eight minutes during 12 games in February. He had 10 field goals in the Jazz’s first 58 games, but went 6-for-8 from the field against the Bobcats.

“I thought Jeremy played well,” Corbin said. “The growth he has shown — not being hesitant after not playing in a lot of games — has been tremendous.”

– Reported by Steve Luhm of the Salt Lake Tribune

Joakim Noah would appreciate some rest

Joakim Noah would appreciate some rest

Joakim Noah has a chair in front of his locker at the United Center. But after most games, he could use a recliner or a couch or even a bed. He’s wiped out.

”I’m tired,” Noah said after scoring 21 points and grabbing 10 rebounds, with five assists and four blocked shots in the Bulls’ 96-85 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Saturday night. ”Pretty tired.”

After back-to-back stellar games against the 76ers on Thursday and the Nets on Saturday, Noah’s fatigue — and the wear and tear on his right foot still being treated for plantar fasciitis — bears watching heading into Sunday night’s game against the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.

The issue of Noah’s playing time cropped up again after he played 41 minutes in a game the Bulls led by 14 points or more throughout the second half. Even Noah seemed to be wondering why he played the final 6:25 of the fourth quarter when the Bulls were leading by 19 points.

– Reported by Mark Potash of the Chicago Sun-Times (Blog)

ryan anderson

Ryan Anderson, whose New Orleans Hornets will host the Orlando Magic on Monday night, has added a new hobby since he joined his new team.

He’s an app tycoon.

Anderson helped fund an app available on the Apple and Android platforms called “Hide It! Head to Head Hidden Object Game,” which was created and developed by Straton Wilhelm, one of Anderson’s best friends.

The game launched in mid-December.

“I’m just really proud of my buddy, that he really put this thing together,” Anderson said. “This all came from one idea on a piece of paper.”

– Reported by Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel

Dennis Rodman, the former NBA star known more for his body piercings and tattoos than international diplomacy skills, said on Sunday he returned from North Korea with a message from its leader Kim Jong-un for President Barack Obama - “call me.”

Rodman appeared on ABC’s “This Week” program a few days after an unlikely meeting with Kim in the North Korea capital Pyongyang, where Rodman was working on a documentary about basketball.

With the international community concerned about North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and continued belligerence, Kim and Rodman attended a game, where they were seen laughing and talking, and had dinner together.

“He wants Obama to do one thing - call him,” Rodman said. “He said, ‘If you can, Dennis - I don’t want (to) do war. I don’t want to do war.’ He said that to me.”

– Reported by Bill Trott Reuters

Austin Rivers still developing his pro-level game

Although he was the 10th overall pick in the 2012 NBA draft and projections were rampant about emerging quickly as a scorer, New Orleans Hornets rookie guard Austin Rivers has stopped trying to live up to lofty expectations.

Instead of forcing shots as he did during the first two months of the season, Rivers plays more under control, looking more to set up his teammates with passes or attack off the dribble when the lane is clear.

With 22 games left in the regular season, Rivers remains a work in progress. He hasn’t scored more than nine points in 30 of the past 31 games. He ranks 16th among rookies with a 6.1 scoring average. But gone are the dreadful four-of-14 shooting performances like he had against the Oklahoma City Thunder in December.

– Reported by John Reid of the New Orleans Times-Picayune

JR Smith shot selection sometimes a concern

Mike Woodson didn’t like a lot of things about the New York Knicks’ 99-93 loss to the Miami Heat on Sunday.

He had a problem with his team’s second-half turnovers, third-quarter intensity and poor execution down the stretch.

But J.R. Smith’s shot selection may have bothered Woodson the most.

Smith essentially shot the Knicks in the foot on Sunday by going just 2-for-11 in the second half. On the afternoon, Smith missed 13 of 18 shots, including 11 of his 14 3-point attempts.

“You can’t take 18 shots and 14 shots are 3s. That’s a bit much,” Woodson said. “He’s got to mix it up.”

– Reported by Ian Begley of ESPN New York

bradley beal

Beal recently surpassed John Wall as the Wizards’ leading scorer at 14.2 points per game and has been on a serious tear in his past eight games.

Over that stretch, Beal has scored at least 20 points five times, is averaging 20.8 points on 49.2 percent shooting from the field and 44.7 percent shooting from long distance. Beal has also recorded two double-doubles and displayed versatility and a solid feel for making timely plays – such as his huge offensive rebound in the closing seconds of a win against Houston. He snared 11 rebounds against the Knicks, at times grabbing them over all-star center Tyson Chandler or Amare Stoudemire.

In the first half against New York, Beal made a hard cut through the lane but stopped under the basket when he noticed that Knicks guard J.R. Smith was trying to beat him to the corner and Wall was about to get trapped by Chandler and Raymond Felton. Wall found him inside for an easy, uncontested dunk.

Beal erupted for 12 points in the third quarter, starting his run when he tracked down a loose ball beyond half court with 10 seconds on the shot clock and never appeared rushed as he split Iman Shumpert and Jason Kidd near the foul line, then completed a nifty lefty layup over Carmelo Anthony.

– Reported by Michael Lee of the Washington Post (Blog)

lebron james

LeBron James had 29 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists, and Miami tied a franchise record with its 14th straight victory, rallying for a 99-93 victory at New York on Sunday.

”We feel like this is one of our better wins of the season, even under the circumstances that we went through tonight, a little adversity being down double digits,” James said.

Dwyane Wade added 20 points, eight rebounds and eight assists for the Heat, who had to overcome a 16-point deficit to beat the Knicks for the first time in three tries this season. Chris Bosh bounced back from a dismal first half to finish with 16 points and Shane Battier hit all four 3-point attempts to score 12.

The Heat won their sixth straight on the road by controlling the final minutes against a team that had a pair of 20-point victories over them this season and looked ready to run them out of the building again…

Carmelo Anthony scored 32 points for the Knicks, who had won three in a row. Jason Kidd emerged from a lengthy slump to finish with 14 points, eight rebounds and six assists. J.R. Smith had 13 points and 12 rebounds, but shot 5 of 18 from the field…

The Heat matched their 14 straight wins during the 2004-05 season and finally beat one of their closest pursuers in the Eastern Conference after dropping their first four against the Knicks and Indiana Pacers…

[Jason] Kidd missed his 14 3-point attempts in the last three games and had been in a 7-for-49 slump behind the arc since Feb. 1, finally losing his starting job before Friday’s victory at Washington.

But he made a 3 early in the second quarter, then hit three more in the period. The Knicks rattled off eight points in a row to make it 59-43, their only concern coming when Anthony went to the locker room before the half ended with what the team said was pain in his ribs. He was back when the second half started and said the injury didn’t bother him.

– Reported by Brian Mahoney of the Associated Press

terrence williams

The Boston Celtics announced today that they have signed guard/forward Terrence Williams to a multi-year contract.

Williams, a 6’6” guard/forward, joined the Celtics on February 20 on a 10-day contract and has appeared in four games for the Celtics this season averaging 3.3 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 11.5 minutes per game.  He joined the Celtics after playing earlier this season for the Guangdong Southern Tigers in the Chinese Basketball Association where he averaged 17.9 points, 3.4 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.2 steals in 29 games.

According to the Boston Herald, “Over a short period Ainge has been able to identify one special trait in Williams’ game. With Rajon Rondo out for the season, Williams is already the best passer on the roster. “He’s a better passer than anyone on our team,” Ainge said. “He can play (point guard, shooting guard and small forward) and handle the ball. The reason I like Terrence is that we don’t have a true point guard. All of our guys can play the point guard in pinches, and all of them can share ballhandling responsibilities. But Terrence can be the best on our team right now.”

The Boston Globe reports: “Though the 6-foot-6-inch Williams may be oversized for that position, his playmaking skills and court vision make the Celtics believe that’s the spot for him. The Celtics first developed that belief when Williams worked out for them last summer. “Just pickup games and just watching the way he played, you really felt that even in those situations that he’s more point than [shooting guard],” Rivers said. “I don’t think he’s ever going to be a great scorer in our league, but he can be a great playmaker.”

The New Orleans Hornets today signed center Henry Sims for the 19th Call-Up of the 2012-13 NBA Development League season. Sims joins more than 116 NBA players with NBA D-League experience currently on NBA rosters.

Sims (6-10, 245, Georgetown) has started all 36 games for the BayHawks this season, averaging 17.1 points, 9.0 rebounds and 1.6 blocks. Sims was a 2013 NBA D-League All-Star and scored 15 points on 6-of-14 shooting from the floor for the Prospects team in a 139-125 win over the Futures squad. Sims recorded 12 double-doubles on the season, ranking him second among NBA D-League players. He scored in double-figures in 32-of-36 games for the BayHawks this season.

Sims signed with the New York Knicks during training camp, but was waived before the start of the regular season.

Sims is expected to join the Hornets today and be available when the team hosts the Orlando Magic on Monday, March 4.

According to the New Orleans Times-Picayune,  ”It’s a good opportunity for him to see how he plays in practices and workouts and maybe he’ll get a shot in the game,” Hornets Coach Monty Williams said. “We need a backup center at this point with Jason (Smith) out for the season. We’ll probably piecemeal it together from here on out, but I like him (Sims) and his big body. It’s unfortunate when a guy has a decent body of work in college and has yet to make it with an NBA team. “I watched him at Georgetown. I love watching JT3 guys (John Thompson III). You have to have a clue if you’re going to play in his system. Guys are typically pretty smart players that come from Georgetown. I actually saw him play in the Big East tournament and he played pretty well.”

The Cleveland Cavaliers have recalled forward Kevin Jones 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.

Jones played in last night’s Charge game against Springfield, notching his seventh double-double of the season and finishing with 17 points and 12 rebounds in 27 minutes.  He has appeared in nine games for the Charge this season, averaging 22.4 points and 12.1 rebounds in 38.3 minutes per game. Jones has played in 19 games for the Cavs this season and is averaging 2.1 points and 1.7 rebounds in 9.0 minutes per game.

Cleveland Cavaliers waive Josh Selby

Cleveland Cavaliers waive Josh Selby

The Cleveland Cavaliers have waived guard Josh Selby, Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant announced today from Cleveland Clinic Courts. The Cavaliers roster now stands at 14.

Selby played in  11 games for the Canton Charge this season, averaging 15.3 points, 6.5 rebounds and 4.2 assists in 32.9 minutes per games.  He also appeared in 10 games for the Memphis Grizzlies this year, averaging 2.0 points in 5.9 minutes per game. Selby was acquired by the Cavs  from the Grizzlies via a trade on January 22nd, 2013.

We have to assume that Selby will be picked up by another team. He’s a solid ability to score and compete.

Bucks beat Raptors 122-114 in overtime

Monta Ellis scored six of his 23 points in overtime and Ersan Ilyasova and Brandon Jennings added five apiece in the extra period to spark the Milwaukee Bucks to a 122-114 victory over the Toronto Raptors on Saturday night.

Ilyasova finished with 29 points and 11 rebounds, while Brandon Jennings had a career-high 19 assists, including one in overtime.

Kyle Lowry had a triple-double with 10 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, Alan Anderson scored 21 points off the bench and Amir Johnson added 19 for Toronto, which lost for the fourth consecutive time and fifth in six games since tying a season best with a five-game winning streak.

Toronto was without Rudy Gay, the team’s leading scorer at 18 points per game, who was a game-time decision due to back spasms.

Tied at 104 at the end of regulation, Larry Sanders dunked in a miss by Ellis to put the Bucks ahead 106-104 - a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.

– Reported by Joe Totoraitis of the Associated Press

Joakim Noah had 21 points and 10 rebounds, Carlos Boozer scored 20 points and the Chicago Bulls beat the Brooklyn Nets 96-85 on Saturday.

The Bulls went on a 19-0 run that started in the second quarter and stretched into third, giving them an 18-point lead. They opened March on a winning note after going 5-8 in February, just their second losing month in 2 1/2 seasons under coach Tom Thibodeau.

Noah followed up the third triple-double of his career with another terrific performance that also included four blocks. He committed five turnovers, but even so it sure was an impressive follow-up to Thursday’s gem, when he had 23 points, 21 rebounds and a career-high 11 blocks in a win over Philadelphia.

Boozer added eight rebounds. Jimmy Butler had 13 points, Nate Robinson and Kirk Hinrich scored 12 apiece, and the Bulls won their second straight after dropping seven of 10.

Brook Lopez led Brooklyn with 22 points - 14 in the first quarter - but the Nets fell for the fourth time in five games. Deron Williams cooled off, finishing with 14 after averaging 27 over the previous three games.

Joe Johnson scored 11 in his second game back after missing three with a foot injury and committed five of Brooklyn’s 21 turnovers.

– Reported by Andrew Seligman of the Associated Press

One assist shy of his first career triple-double, Evan Turner took pride in getting the win.

Turner had 22 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists, Jrue Holiday scored 27, and the Philadelphia 76ers snapped a seven-game losing streak with a 104-97 victory over the Golden State Warriors on Saturday night.

”I wasn’t going to force anything to get a triple-double,” Turner said. ”It was cool and it’s great to get a win. We competed and gave a lot of effort.”

Thad Young had 14 points and 16 rebounds and Royal Ivey chipped in with 17 points for the Sixers, who are 5 1/2 games behind Milwaukee for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with 25 games left.

Stephen Curry scored 30 and Klay Thompson added 29 for the Warriors, who’ve lost four in a row.

Despite losing 10 of 13, Golden State remains sixth in the West. The Warriors are one game up on eighth-place Houston and 3 1/2 ahead of the Los Angeles Lakers, who are fighting for the last spot.

”Our problem was not offensively, our problem was defensively,” Warriors coach Mark Jackson said.

– Reported by Rob Maaddi of the Associated Press

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