Archive for March 21st, 2013

shavlik randolph

The Boston Celtics announced today that they have signed forward Shavlik Randolph to a multi-year contract.

According to WEEI, “As they did with Chinese Basketball Association imports Terrence Williams and D.J. White before him, the Celtics signed Shavlik Randolph for the remainder of the season. The deal includes an option for next season.”

Randolph, a 6’10” forward, has appeared in three games for the Celtics this season averaging 3.3 points and 4.3 rebounds in 12.0 minutes per game. He posted highs of six points, eight rebounds and two steals against Charlotte on March 16.

Jason Terry

Jason Eugene Terry will be back at American Airlines Center Friday night for the first time since he left the Dallas Mavericks last summer to sign a three-year, $15.675 million free agent contract with the Boston Celtics.

And there’s at least four overzealous Mavericks fans who hope the Jet will receive the royal treatment from the sellout crowd that’ll be on hand when Dallas (32-36) faces the Celtics (36-31) at 7:30 p.m.

“I hope they give him a standing ovation,’’ owner Mark Cuban said. “He deserves it.

“He’ll be a Maverick for life. He’s part of the family.’’

Terry played for the Mavericks from 2004 until last summer when he and Cuban couldn’t agree on a contract that would have kept him in Dallas for what he wanted to be the remainder of his career. Still, the two have remained friends as Cuban has already said he plans to retire Terry’s No. 31 jersey and hang it in the AAC rafters once he retires.

– Reported by Dwain Price of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Al Horford

Horford played in only 11 regular-season games last season before a torn left pectoral muscle sidelined him. He returned May 6 for the final three games of the first-round playoff series loss to the Celtics. Horford said he is at near full strength from that injury and is completely over calf and hamstring issues that bothered him earlier this season.

The two-time All-Star is the Hawks’ leading scorer with 17.4 points per game, good for 23rd in the NBA. His 10.2 rebound average ranks ninth in the league and his 55.0 field-goal percentage ranks 11th.

“When you give him that top-of-the-key jump shot, he’s pretty accurate from there,” Bucks coach Jim Boylan said following Wednesday’s game. “He’s an All-Star player. That’s what All-Stars do, night in and night out. That’s why they’re All-Stars.”

Horford’s mid-range jumper has been especially effective this season. He has shot more than 44 percent from both 15-19 feet (119-of-268, 44.4 percent) and from 20-24 feet (26-of-59, 44.1 percent). That has become a valuable weapon for the Hawks as Horford, playing undersized at center, has drawn the opposition’s big men away from the basket.

– Reported by Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Tim Duncan

Not long before tipoff of what would become his team’s 29th consecutive loss in San Antonio, Golden State coach Mark Jackson was asked his chief concern in facing a Spurs team minus All-Star point guard Tony Parker.

Jackson responded with an answer straight out of 1997.

“Big guy by the name of Duncan,” Jackson said. “I heard he’s pretty good.”

Duncan turns 37 next month.

His line in Wednesday’s 104-93 victory over the Warriors — 25 points, 13 rebounds, six assists, four blocks — could have been lifted from the first half of his 16th season, which in turn could have been lifted from his MVP heyday.

Over his past three games, Duncan is averaging 27.7 points, 14.7 rebounds, 3.3 blocks and shooting 64.3 percent (36 of 56), a sure sign he has regained his All-Star form from before his Feb. 2 knee injury.

– Reported by Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio Express-News (Blog)

Rockets rookie Royce White leaves D-League team

The brief NBA Development League career of Rockets rookie Royce White could be over. Whether a career in the NBA can be salvaged remains unclear after the latest stunning turn in his tumultuous season.

White announced via Twitter that he was leaving the Rio Grande Valley Vipers to be in Houston for the remainder of the season at the advice of the team physician. He did not offer any explanation, but later said he was returning to Houston, not the Rockets.

Rockets management was not a part of the decision, according to a person with knowledge of their thinking on the issue.

Rockets officials would not comment. Even less clear is whether the agreement that White considered necessary to report to the D-League in February will protect him should the Rockets wish to suspend him again.

– Reported by Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle (Blog)

Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant participated in a five-on-five scrimmage Thursday. So did Pau Gasol.

Bryant left a little early because his sprained left ankle stiffened a bit, but Lakers Coach Mike D’Antoni wasn’t concerned about his availability Friday against Washington.

“He’ll be ready,” D’Antoni said.

Gasol missed 20 games because of a tear inside the bottom of his right foot. He will play limited minutes Friday while simultaneously trying to get in shape.

“It’s not good,” Gasol said of his conditioning. “But I’ll continue to work on it and it’ll continue to get better.”

– Reported by Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times

Bobcats center Brendan Haywood injures foot, done for season

The Charlotte Bobcats announced today that center Brendan Haywood will miss the remainder of the season after being diagnosed with a stress reaction in his left foot.

Haywood missed three of the team’s last four games due to left ankle soreness. He had an MRI yesterday, and a CT scan ordered by foot specialist Dr. Bob Anderson confirmed the stress reaction.

Haywood, who will be in a walking boot for the next four weeks, has appeared in 61 games for the Bobcats this season, with averages of 3.5 points and 4.8 rebounds in 19.0 minutes.

Per the Charlotte Observer, “Haywood came to the Bobcats in July, after the Dallas Mavericks waived him under the amnesty clause. He is under contract to the Bobcats the next two seasons.”

Duncan leads Spurs past Warriors 104-93

Duncan leads Spurs past Warriors 104-93

The San Antonio Spurs just keep winning, especially when they face the Golden State Warriors at home.

Tim Duncan had 25 points, 13 rebounds, six assists and four blocks, and San Antonio beat Golden State 104-93 on Wednesday night for its 29th straight home win against the Warriors.

Golden State has not won in San Antonio since Feb. 14, 1997, the season before Duncan was selected No. 1 overall by the Spurs.

”He’s a Hall of Fame player, an all-time great,” Warriors coach Marc Jackson said. ”He certainly had a big game tonight.”

Tiago Splitter added 17 points and Manu Ginobili had 16 points and seven assists for San Antonio (52-16), which has won three straight and seven of nine overall. Nando De Colo had 10 points.

The Spurs are right behind Miami (53-14) for the league’s best record.

Stephen Curry had 24 points for Golden State (39-31), which remains sixth in the West. Jarrett Jack had 14 points, and David Lee added 10 points and 12 rebounds.

Golden State closed to 92-88 when Curry went 1 for 2 at the line, but Duncan threw in a running hook and a 16-foot jumper to give San Antonio an eight-point lead with 2:37 remaining.

– Reported by the Associated Press

Brook Lopez

Brook Lopez is just like Deron Williams. He enjoys visiting Dallas, too.

Lopez scored 38 points and Williams had 31 in his first visit since spurning his hometown team in free agency, leading the Brooklyn Nets past the Mavericks 113-96 on Wednesday night.

Williams scored 26 in the second half, repeatedly hitting shots and occasionally assisting on baskets by Lopez to prevent a Dallas rally in the fourth quarter.

Lopez matched the 38 points he scored in one of the five games he played last season, when the Nets snapped a 12-game losing streak in Dallas. Both times, he finished one point shy of his career high from two years ago against Detroit.

”The team played well in both games,” Lopez said with a laugh. ”I think that’s the correlation. It just depends on who’s hot. We have so many options on this team.” …

Dirk Nowitzki led Dallas with 16 points and had a team-high six rebounds compared to 22 boards for Reggie Evans of the Nets, who outrebounded the Mavericks 45-34.

– Reported by Schuyler Dixon of the Associated Press

marc gasol

Marc Gasol and the Memphis Grizzlies finally put away Oklahoma City with their final shot.

In a matchup of Western Conference contenders that had a playoff feel to it, Gasol tipped in Zach Randolph’s miss with less than a second left in overtime Wednesday night to give Memphis a 90-89 win over the Thunder.

Gasol was so excited about the winning basket that he dropped a not-suitable-for-television expletive in the live postgame interview.

”I saw Zach going baseline and just went for the rebound and got lucky with the tip,” Gasol said. ”It’s an emotional game. It’s a team that we like playing against, and a team that knows us very well. It was a gritty game.” …

”We win in a variety of ways. It’s never pretty,” said Mike Conley, who led the Grizzlies with a season-high 24 points. ”That’s that grit-and-grind motto right there. We just find a way to win however it is. (This) was one of those wins.”

Randolph added 15 points and 18 rebounds, giving him 7,001 career rebounds, while Gasol had 14 points and 15 rebounds.

Kevin Durant led the Thunder with 32 points, including 15 in the third quarter to help Oklahoma City take its first lead. Westbrook scored 20 on 7-of-25 shooting from the field. Kevin Martin added 17 points, but no other Thunder player had more than seven.

– Reported by Clay Bailey of the Associated Press

Byron Mullens

Gerald Henderson is enjoying the best streak of his four-year NBA career, and the Charlotte Bobcats are playing better, too.

Henderson turned in another solid all-around game, Byron Mullens scored 25 points and the Bobcats beat the Toronto Raptors 107-101 on Wednesday night to win consecutive games for the first time since mid-November.

Henderson scored 21 points on 8-of-14 shooting and added seven rebounds and five assists. The soon-to-be restricted free agent is averaging 22.7 points on 50 percent shooting in his last seven games, including a 35-point performance in a win over Boston on March 12.

But he’s more willing to talk about the team’s recent improvement than his own personal accomplishments.

”I think it’s just us maturing,” Henderson said. ”I think that’s a big deal. We’ve been in a lot of situations where we haven’t gotten it done in the fourth quarter but we have recently, so that’s good.”

With the Raptors keying on him in the final period, Henderson played the role of distributor and the Bobcats leaned heavily on Mullens and Ben Gordon down the stretch.

– Reported by Steve Reed of the Associated Press

lebron james

Miami’s winning streak was in danger of disappearing - in Cleveland, of all places.

But LeBron James wouldn’t give up.

”That guy right there doesn’t want to lose in this building,” teammate Dwayne Wade said, nodding toward James, who left many angry Cavaliers fans behind when he bolted for Miami as a free agent three years ago. ”Not tonight.”

James scored 25 points as the Heat overcame a 27-point deficit in the third quarter and won their 24th straight game, 98-95 over the short-handed Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday night to extend the second-longest winning streak in NBA history.

The Heat are within nine games of matching the record of 33 consecutive wins held by the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers. Once believed to be untouchable, the mark is now within reach.

James and his teammates have insisted the record isn’t one of their goals, and for more than 30 minutes the defending champions seemed disinterested and on the verge of losing for the first time since Feb. 1. Miami trailed 67-40 with 7:44 left in the third quarter.

– Reported by Tom Withers of the Associated Press

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