Archive for June 12th, 2013

Back-to-back blowouts in NBA Finals

Spurs guard Tony Parker opened the NBA Finals with a memorable shot at the end of Game 1.

San Antonio’s 92-88 victory gave hope that the series against the defending champion Miami Heat was going to be full of close games.

It hasn’t quite worked out that way so far.

What followed Parker’s sensational shot in Game 1 - a twisting, ducking, barely shot clock-beating jumper off the glass - was a 19-point Heat blowout in Game 2 and the Spurs coasting to a 113-77 win on Tuesday night to take a 2-1 series lead.

The blowouts have sent the stars on both teams to the bench early and allowed guys such as DeJuan Blair and James Jones to run out the clock.

– Reported by Paul J. Weber of the Associated Press

The Brooklyn Nets have named former Net Jason Kidd as the team’s new head coach, General Manager Billy King announced tonight. Kidd becomes the 18th head coach in the franchise’s NBA history.

“On behalf of the Nets organization, I am very pleased to welcome Jason Kidd as the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets,” said King.  “Jason is a proven winner and leader with an incredible wealth of basketball knowledge and experience. This will be a natural transition for him to move into the role of head coach, as he embodies the tough, smart and team-first mentality that we are trying to establish in Brooklyn.”

“Jason Kidd has a long and legendary history with the Nets and with the city of New York,” said Nets Principal Owner Mikhail Prokhorov.  “He has the fire in the belly we need, and has achieved as a player everything the Brooklyn Nets are striving to achieve.  We believe he will lead us there.  Welcome home, Jason.”

“This is a tremendous opportunity to be named head coach of the Brooklyn Nets, and it’s a role I have been studying for over the course of my playing days,” said Kidd.  “Championship teams are built on being prepared, playing unselfishly and being held accountable, and that’s how I expect to coach this basketball team. I am truly excited about this next phase of my basketball career.”

Kidd, who captained the Nets to two consecutive NBA Finals appearances in 2002 and 2003, played in 506 games over six and a half seasons for New Jersey, averaging 14.6 points, 9.1 assists and 7.2 rebounds per game.  Throughout his tenure with the Nets, Kidd led the team to six consecutive playoff appearances, including two Eastern Conference Championships and four Atlantic Division titles.  As a Net, Kidd was selected as an NBA All-Star five times while being named to an All-NBA team three times and an NBA All-Defensive team six times.  In Nets all-time NBA history, Kidd currently ranks first in assists (4,620), steals (950), three-point field goals made (813) and triple-doubles 61, second in minutes played (18,737), fourth in points (7,373) and rebounds (3,662), fifth in games played (506) and sixth in field goals made (2,613) and free throws made (1,352). In 78 playoff games, Kidd holds Nets all-time records for points, assists, rebounds, steals, field goals made/attempted, three-point field goals made/attempted, minutes and games played. 

Over his 19 year NBA playing career, Kidd holds averages of 12.6 points, 8.7 assists, 6.3 rebounds and 1.93 steals, while playing for Dallas, Phoenix, New Jersey and New York.  On the League’s all-time leaders lists he ranks: second in assists (12,091) and steals (2,684), third in minutes (50,111), three-point field goals (1,988) and triple-doubles (107), sixth in games played (1,391), 50th overall in rebounds and first overall amongst guards (8,725), 71st in points scored (17,529).

Doc Rivers still undecided on future

Doc Rivers

The shroud of mystery surrounding Doc Rivers continues to leave many unsure, the Celtics included, as to what his plans are for the future.

ESPN reported on Wednesday that Rivers believes “it may be time for a change” in his status as Celtics head coach.

But a league source contacted by CSNNE.com on Wednesday indicated that Rivers continues to mull over whether he will return to Boston, and he hasn’t made a decision one way or the other.

“He’s really torn up about this,” the source said.

Reported by A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE (Blog)

Milwaukee Bucks assistant coaches Joe Wolf, Sidney Moncrief, Chris Gilmartin, Bill Peterson and Anthony Goldwire will not have their contracts renewed, club officials confirmed Wednesday.

New Bucks coach Larry Drew is in the process of putting together his own staff. Although nothing has been announced yet, two of his former assistants in Atlanta, Bob Bender and Nick Van Exel, helped Drew run the team’s draft workout Wednesday.

Moncrief, the Bucks legend and five-time all-star, served as an assistant the past two seasons under Scott Skiles and Jim Boylan. Moncrief was named to replace Kelvin Sampson when he left the staff to become the lead assistant in Houston under Kevin McHale.

Wolf spent five seasons on Milwaukee’s coaching staff, being hired in Skiles’ first season with the Bucks in 2008-’09. Wolf, from Kohler, Wis., became the lead assistant when Boylan took over as interim head coach.

Reported by Charles F. Gardner of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (Blog)

The NBA Finals opened as such a juicy matchup of A-list stars.

LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh for the defending champion Miami Heat against Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili for the old guard San Antonio Spurs making one last run at one more championship.

Big 3 vs. Big 3. Winner take all.

Once the series actually started, a group of D-listers crashed the party.

Gary Neal and Danny Green combined for 51 points and 13 3-pointers in San Antonio’s Game 3 victory over Miami on Tuesday night, carrying the Spurs to a 2-1 lead in a best-of-seven series that has been controlled by no-names, not big names.

”We don’t expect a performance like this from those kind of guys, but they were great,” Duncan said after San Antonio routed Miami 113-77. ”They did it. They found their spots and knocked them out.”

Been that way all series. On both sides.

Green, who was twice cut by San Antonio and spent a summer in Slovenia, may be the early leader for Finals MVP after scoring 27 points in Game 3. He also hit four big 3-pointers in the Spurs’ Game 1 victory in Miami and was a perfect 6 for 6 from long range in Game 2, outshining the four-time MVP James every step of the way.

”Never thought in a million years that would happen,” Green said.

Reported by Jon Krawczynski of the Associated Press

Danny Green and Gary Neal aren’t NBA royalty like LeBron James.

Either undrafted or unwanted, they were once more likely to be found playing in summer league or some other country than against the mighty Miami Heat.

On Tuesday, they led the San Antonio Spurs to one of the best-shooting, biggest blowouts in NBA Finals history.

Green made seven of the Spurs’ finals-record 16 3-pointers, Tim Duncan had 12 points and 14 rebounds, and the Spurs clobbered the Heat 113-77 on Tuesday night to take 2-1 lead in the series.

Green scored 27 points and Gary Neal made six 3-pointers while scoring 24 as San Antonio went 16 of 32 from behind the arc, rolling to the third-biggest victory in finals history.

”Those guys shot incredibly,” Duncan said. ”Gave us the breathing room when we needed it.”

Neal could be even more important going forward, after starting point guard Tony Parker revealed fresh concerns about his sore hamstring. He plans to get an MRI on Wednesday…

James finished with 15 points and 11 rebounds, but missed 11 of his first 13 shots against the excellent defense of Kawhi Leonard, who had 14 points and 12 rebounds…

Duncan shot 3 of 13 for nine points, his worst performance ever in his 25 NBA Finals games, in the Heat’s 103-84 victory Sunday. Parker wasn’t much better, shooting 5 of 14 and committing five turnovers, and Manu Ginobili admitted afterward the veteran trio had to play well for the Spurs to win…

Mike Miller made all five 3-pointers and scored 15 points for the Heat, who broke open Sunday’s game and seized momentum in the series with a 33-5 run in the second half.

Reported by Brian Mahoney of the Associated Press

Basketball blog