Archive for April 8th, 2013

The Minnesota Timberwolves today announced that Kevin Love will undergo an arthroscopic procedure on his left knee to remove a buildup of scar tissue. The surgery will be performed by Dr. David Altchek of the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City later this week. A typical recovery time for this type of procedure is 4-6 weeks.

Love has missed the past 47 games after breaking the third and fourth metacarpal in his right hand at Denver on Jan. 3. He underwent surgery on Jan. 15 at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. Love originally suffered a fracture of his third and fourth metacarpal in his right hand on Oct. 17 while working out, and missed the first nine games of the season.

For the season, Love played in 18 contests and averaged 18.3 points and 14.0 rebounds per game.

The Chicago Bulls today signed forward Malcolm Thomas for the remainder of the season. He originally signed a 10-day contract with the Bulls on March 19, followed by a subsequent 10-day contract on March 29.

Thomas (6-9, 225) has appeared in two games with the Bulls and averaged 2.0 ppg in 1.0 mpg.  He also recorded three points and five rebounds in five games with the Golden State Warriors earlier this season.

New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony and Minnesota Timberwolves center Nikola Pekovic today were named Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for games played Monday, April 1 through Sunday, April 7.

Anthony led the Knicks, who are in the midst of a 12-game winning streak, to a 4-0 week. He averaged a league-best 41.8 points and became just the second Knick (Bernard King) to tally 40-or-more points in three consecutive outings. Anthony set a season high and tied a career high with 50 points during a 102-90 win over the Miami Heat on April 2. He posted back-to-back double-doubles to close the week in wins over the Milwaukee Bucks on April 5 and Oklahoma City Thunder on April 7.

Pekovic helped the Timberwolves to a 3-1 week behind averages of 25.0 points (third in the conference), and 8.5 rebounds (11th in the conference), while shooting .589 from the field (ninth in the conference). Pekovic led Minnesota in scoring in all four contests and in rebounding three times. His 20-point, 13-rebound performance to close the week during a 107-101 win over the Detroit Pistons marked the 1,000th career victory for head coach Rick Adelman.

Other nominees for the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week were Brooklyn’s Deron Williams, Chicago’s Carlos Boozer, Denver’s Corey Brewer, Indiana’s Roy Hibbert, Memphis’ Mike Conley, and Oklahoma City’s Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.

Brian Butch of the Bakersfield Jam was today named NBA Development League Performer of the Week for games played April 1-7.  The honor is the first for Butch of his career.

Butch (6-11, 240, Wisconsin) helped the Jam to a 3-0 week to close out the 2013 NBA D-League regular season and clinch the West Division title.  He played in two games, averaging 27.5 points while shooting 69 percent from the field, 15.0 rebounds, 2.5 blocks and 34.5 minutes.

He led the team in both scoring and rebounding in both of his outings, including a season-high 28 points  in a 109-102 win over the Santa Cruz Warriors on April 5.  He tied a season high with 18 rebounds on April 1 in a 124-94 win over the Reno Bighorns.  In 47 games for the Jam this season, Butch is averaging 12.7 points, 10.9 rebounds, 1.0 blocks and 29.5 minutes.

Other top performers considered include Austin’s Lester Hudson, Canton’s Kyle Weaver, Erie’s Cory Higgins, Fort Wayne’s Tony Mitchell, Idaho’s Reggie Hamilton, Iowa’s Othyus Jeffers, Los Angeles’ Elijah Millsap, Maine’s Chris Wright, Rio Grande Valley’s Royce White, on assignment from the Houston Rockets, Reno’s Samardo Samuels, Santa Cruz’s Stefhon Hannah, Springfield’s Dennis Horner, Sioux Falls’ James Mays, Texas’ Justin Dentmon and Tulsa’s Rasual Butler.

The Golden State Warriors have assigned guard Scott Machado to the Santa Cruz Warriors of the NBA Development League, the team announced today.

Machado was signed by the Warriors as a “Call-Up” from Santa Cruz on April 7.  He appeared in 10 games for the Warriors’ D-League affiliate prior to his call-up, averaging 6.5 points, 1.8 rebounds and 3.4 assists in 15.0 minutes.  In 28 D-League games combined this year with Santa Cruz and Rio Grande Valley, Machado has averaged 8.9 points 2.5 rebounds and 5.1 assists in 24.0 minutes per contest.

The Santa Cruz Warriors earned the #3 seed in the NBA D-League Playoffs and begin their first round series on the road against the Fort Wayne Mad Ants on Wednesday, April 10.

Gerald Wallace

At several points during the Nets’ 105-96 win over the Bobcats on Saturday, the ball found its way into the hands of an open Gerald Wallace.

But, outside of getting fouled on an attempted layup after Deron Williams found him wide open under the basket, Wallace didn’t attempt a single shot.

Wallace confirmed afterwards what seemed to be the case to anyone who had watched the game: that six weeks of struggles since the All-Star break in mid-February have sapped the veteran’s confidence in his shooting stroke.

“My confidence is totally gone,” Wallace told The Post Saturday. “I’m just at the point now … I’m in a situation where I feel like if I miss, I’m going to get pulled out of the game, you know what I’m saying? So my whole concept is just that you can’t come out of the game if you’re not missing shots.

“I think I lost the confidence of the coaching staff and my teammates. So my main thing is those guys can score, so instead of thinking about it so much, just trying to focus on defense, try to move the ball and get those guys shots.”

– Reported by Tim Bontemps of the New York Post

Chauncey Billups has no retirement plans yet

Despite all of the injuries that have limited Chauncey Billups to 20 games this season, the Clippers starting guard said “no” when asked whether he had given thought to retiring after the season.

Billups sat out his eighth consecutive game because of a strained right groin, and he has no timetable for a return.

He sat out the first 14 games of the season recovering from left Achilles’ tendon surgery. Then Billups missed 34 games because of tendinitis in his left foot and one game because of a sore lower back.

“When I was trying to come back, they [the doctors] told me that this year would be tough,” Billups said. “I knew I would have a lot of knickknack injuries just so my body could recalibrate. And the following season, I could be 100% back to myself. So I was ready for the fight. That’s why these setbacks, these small ones, they don’t take the toll on me because I already had this set.”

– Reported by Broderick Turner Los Angeles Times

kyrie irving

Cavaliers All-Star guard Kyrie Irving isn’t addressing questions regarding the future of Cleveland coach Byron Scott.

The Cavaliers had dropped 12-of-14 games going into Sunday’s game against Orlando. The recent slide has led to speculation that Scott, who is 63-160 in three seasons, may not be back for a fourth.

Irving, who has spoken about his close relationship with Scott several times during his two seasons with the team, said Sunday he’s thinking more about the final seven games of the Cavaliers’ season rather than the coaching situation.

“Until that time comes, I’m not really worried about it,” Irving said. “To even imagine that, I’m not going down that road. I’m focused on finishing the season with him and that’s all that matters right now.”

– Reported by the Associated Press

Dwyane Wade not rushing back for Heat

Dwyane wade injury

Wade said he wants to get back on the court before the playoffs begin. He just isn’t sure when, but has no plans of rushing it.

Wade has missed the past four games because of ankle and knee soreness, with the knee being the bigger of the concerns.

“I don’t know,” Wade said when asked about his return. “I’m just trying to make sure I’m healthy. The most important thing is to be healthy. When I feel it, I’ll get back on the court. Obviously, I want to play but I just got to make sure that I’m right.”

Wade said he has no problem taking a few games off because the Heat have earned it by already securing the top seed in the Eastern Conference.

“A lot of people think the Heat are just resting,” Wade said. “We played a lot of games this year. We had guys banged up at certain times and different elements. We’ve got to get them healthy, just like other teams have done. It just so happens that we’ve been able to do it at the end of the year. We took care of business and we were able to say, `Ok, we have these injures, let’s try to take care of them.”‘

– Reported by Shandel Richardson of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Indiana Pacers

Welcome back to the top of the Central Division, Indiana Pacers.

It’s been too long since you’ve been there.

After eight years of watching Detroit, Cleveland and Chicago take turns being at the top, the Pacers can call themselves the best in the division again.

The Pacers didn’t win the division be beating an opponent, they got an assist from an all-too-familiar opponent.

The Detroit Pistons beat the Chicago Bulls on Sunday night, giving the Pacers their first division title since the 2003-04 season.

The victory ended an 18-game losing streak to the Bulls by the Pistons.

The streak couldn’t have ended at a better time for the Pacers.

– Reported by Mike Wells of the Indianapolis Star

Jazz beat Warriors 97-90, regain 8th spot in West

Some Utah Jazz players watched the Lakers-Clippers game on a big-screen television inside the locker room while they prepared to face the Golden State Warriors. Others followed the contest on cellphones while riding on the late bus to the arena. Coach Tyrone Corbin just checked the final score when the Lakers lost.

”You could see the look on everybody’s face change,” Jazz guard Randy Foye said. ”Nobody said anything. It was just everybody had that look on their face, ‘You know what time it is. You know what we have to do.”’

While the Warriors had a chance to seal a playoff spot, Utah seized the opportunity for itself.

Mo Williams hit a huge 3-pointer in the final seconds to finish with 25 points, Al Jefferson added 19 points and 12 rebounds and the Jazz regained the Western Conference’s final playoff position over the Lakers by holding off the Warriors 97-90 on Sunday night for a monumental road win…

Williams’ 3-pointer with 13.4 seconds remaining put Utah ahead by six and spoiled Golden State’s shot to clinch a playoff berth in front of a 29th sellout crowd of 19,596. The Jazz moved a half-game ahead of the Lakers for the eighth seed. Utah also owns the tiebreaker after winning the season series 2-1 against the Lakers, who lost to the Clippers 109-95 earlier in the day…

Stephen Curry scored 17 of his 22 points in the first half and Klay Thompson had 20 points for the Warriors, who were trying to clinch a postseason spot for the first time since 2007 and just the second in 19 years…

David Lee, who has never been to the playoffs in his eight NBA seasons, added 21 points and 13 rebounds for Golden State, which was outplayed inside by Utah’s front line of Jefferson, Derrick Favors (12 points, 13 rebounds) and Paul Millsap (11 points, six rebounds) most of the way.

– Reported by Antonio Gonzalez of the Associated Press

Chris Paul

Chris Paul held up the red T-shirt reading ‘Can’t Stop Los Angeles’ for a quick postgame photo. He didn’t put it on, and neither did his Clippers teammates.

There was no celebrating on court or in the locker room after they beat the Lakers 109-95 on Sunday to clinch the Clippers’ first Pacific Division title in franchise history against a team that has long overshadowed them.

”It just feels like something we were supposed to do,” said Paul, who had 24 points and 12 assists. ”It means we’re headed in the right direction. We’re not satisfied. We understand this is something small compared to the big picture.”

Blake Griffin had 24 points and 12 rebounds as the playoff-bound Clippers swept the Lakers 4-0 for the first time since Donald Sterling bought the team in 1981.

The 1974-75 team, known as the Buffalo Braves, had the franchise’s only other sweep of the Lakers.

Fans chanted, ”Sweep! Sweep!” in the closing seconds.

Sterling accepted a congratulatory handshake from a fan after the game…

Jamal Crawford had 20 points off the bench, DeAndre Jordan had 13 rebounds and Caron Butler scored 14 points for the Clippers, who knew that even if they lost, they could have clinched later Sunday if Utah won at Golden State. Utah defeated the Warriors 97-90..

Dwight Howard scored 25 points, including 9 of 13 free throws, for the Lakers, who played without injured starters Steve Nash and Metta World Peace. Kobe Bryant added 25 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds, and Pau Gasol had 12 points and 13 rebounds as the Lakers’ three-game winning streak ended.

– Reported by Beth Harris of the Associated Press

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