Archive for May 3rd, 2014

Here’s NJ.com with a report on the woman that “hung out” with Donald Sterling, and was the recipient of his discriminatory demands:

V. Stiviano has finally spoken, and what she said probably wasn’t what anyone expected:

V. Stiviano, the woman at the center of the NBA scandal, said she did not leak the audio of racist remarks that probably will cost Donald Sterling ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers, and she hoped Sterling would apologize publicly for his hurtful comments.

She also said she does not believe he is a racist.

“I think he’s highly more traumatized and hurt by the things that he said himself,” she told Barbara Walters of ABC News on Friday. “I think he can’t even believe or understand sometimes the thing he says, and I think he’s hurt by it. He’s hurting right now.”

She added: “I think Mr. Sterling is from a different generation than I am. I think he was brought up to believe these things … segregation, whites and blacks. But through his actions he’s shown that he’s not a racist. He’s shown to be a very generous and kind man.”

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And, this is from CNN.com: Despite their numerous conversations, she does not consider him a racist. “No, I don’t believe that in my heart,” she said. ” I think the things he says are not what he feels. Anyone can say anything in the heat of the moment. “I think he comes from a different generation … he was brought up to believe these things … segregation, whites and blacks. But through his actions, he’s shown that he’s not a racist. He’s shown to be a very generous and kind man.” She said he slammed her pictures on social media because of pressure from naysayers who criticized her and questioned why she’s always around him.

Here’s the South Florida Sun Sentinel reporting on the Miami Heat, who swept the Charlotte Bobcats 4-0 in the first round of the 2014 NBA playoffs and await the winner of the Nets-Raptors series:

With the Miami Heat given Saturday off by coach Erik Spoelstra, there was no need to answer the question that never results in an honest answer, or any answer, anyway:

Who would you rather face in the next round?

The question will answer itself in Sunday’s Game 7 between the Brooklyn Nets and Toronto Raptors at Air Canada Centre, the winner to arrive at AmericanAirlines Arena for Tuesday’s Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.

But let’s be real, there is a reason the Heat executive suite has been stocked with Canadian Club for the weekend, a reason Canadian bacon and Tim Hortons will be featured at the player brunch Sunday, a reason Spoelstra will flip a loonie to decide which team defends which basket during Sunday practice.

The Heat not only swept the four-game season series from the Raptors, but have won the past 15 meetings, never losing to Toronto during the Big Three era.

By contrast, the Heat went 0-4 against the Nets this season, losing both preseason games to Brooklyn, as well.

You do the math.

Here’s the New York Post reporting on the Brooklyn Nets, who on Sunday will play Gmae 7 against the Toronto Raptors to see which team advances to the second round of the 2014 NBA playoffs:

You could see it in DeMar DeRozan’s eyes, hear it in his voice: the Raptors were cooked in the layup lines. They had no idea what they were getting into. All that talk of experience that seemed so trite the past few games? Finally, we saw why it really can be a big deal.

“We didn’t realize we had Brooklyn against the wall,” DeRozan said quietly shaking his head, the Raptors’ gifted guard copping to a team-wide malaise, setting up the throttling they had just endured. “They came out and started throwing haymakers.”

This is what the Nets wanted to believe about themselves all along, going back to Durham, N.C., back to the first hours of training camp. This is how they viewed themselves before the slings and arrows of the regular season started chipping away at that veneer, before the rigors of a rugged playoff series nudged their toes to the brink of the abyss.

Maybe greatness on demand was too much to ask across the season’s first 87 games. But Friday night at Barclays Center, they were able to summon their inner Superteam when they needed it most desperately. They were able to buy themselves at least two more days of basketball. The final score was 97-83, 14 points that felt like 40.

One game left to decide the series.

Here’s the Oregonian reporting on Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard, who won Game 6 of the team’s first round playoff series against the Houston Rockets at the buzzer with a shot that eliminated Houston from the postseason.

The answer is yes.

After watching all of you dance in the aisles, some of you taking your shirts off and waving them above your head … after watching the Trail Blazers rush the court, and LaMarcus Aldridge saying he wouldn’t let go of Damian Lillard for “three minutes” … after hearing the roars, wave after wave after wave as the replay unfolded on the scoreboard screen … after hearing the players singing in the showers … after sitting before this screen, trying to put it all into perspective, all I can say is …

Yes.

Damian Lillard just hit the greatest shot in Trail Blazers history.

And because of it, the Trail Blazers have won a playoff series for the first time in 14 seasons.

Nets beat Raptors 97-83, force Game 7

Deron Williams had the Brooklyn Nets speeding toward a Game 7 when suddenly everything stopped.

He had just crashed to the court with what looked like yet another ankle injury. Kevin Garnett waved for help, and Williams slowly began limping back toward the bench. Then he decided to stay in.

For all the big names and big salaries on the Nets, Williams knows they aren’t going anywhere unless he leads them.

Williams shook off his second-half injury to score 23 points and Brooklyn forced a seventh game in its first-round series by beating the Toronto Raptors 97-83 on Friday night…

DeMar DeRozan scored 28 for the Raptors, who will have to go the distance if they are to win a seven-game series for the first time in franchise history. They haven’t won any postseason series since 2001, and never really had a chance to wrap this one up after falling behind by 26 points…

Lowry shot 4 of 16 for 11 points after scoring 36 in the Raptors’ Game 5 victory. He was the only other Toronto player in double figures.

– Associated Press

Mavs beat Spurs 113-111, force Game 7

Monta Ellis is headed to his first Game 7, and DeJuan Blair gets a chance to play his old team in San Antonio one more time after all.

Dallas star Dirk Nowitzki will return to the site of one of the best moments of his stellar career.

Ellis scored 12 of his 29 points to lead a fourth-quarter comeback that also got an energetic boost from Blair in his return after getting suspended, and the Mavericks forced a deciding game in their first-round series with top-seeded San Antonio, beating the Spurs 113-111 on Friday night.

“Put all of our chips on the table and see what happens,” said Ellis, whose 3-pointer put eighth-seeded Dallas ahead for a good at 94-92 with 5 minutes to go.

Tony Parker matched Nowitzki with 22 points to lead the heavily favored Spurs, who are stuck in a tossup series after they won all four games against the Mavericks during the regular season and had a 10-game winning streak against them after taking the opener.

– Associated Press

Here’s the New York Post with an update on Steve Kerr and the vacant New York Knicks head coaching job:

steve kerr

Steve Kerr likely is making his swan song for TNT on Saturday night when he announces Game 7 of the Grizzlies-Thunder series in Oklahoma City. According to an NBA source, Kerr likely will make his final decision on accepting the Knicks head-coaching job soon after the weekend.

As The Post reported, the Lakers’ coaching vacancy is a non-factor for Kerr, who is not a candidate. The Lakers are in store for a prolonged search after Mike D’Antoni resigned, and neither side has interest.

However, one thing that can derail Kerr’s getting hired by the Knicks is if the Warriors lose their first-round series to the Clippers on Saturday and coach Mark Jackson is let go. Kerr, whose family lives in San Diego, may listen if approached by the Warriors. Kerr is represented by former Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum.

If the Warriors move on, Kerr and the Knicks are likely to move on to marriage, thanks to president Phil Jackson.

Friday in Portland, the Trail Blazers beat the Rockets 99-98, eliminating Houston in six games from the first round of the 2014 NBA playoffs. LaMarcus Aldridge had 30 points and 13 rebounds in the win. But the play of the day was Damian Lillard hitting a three-pointer at the buzzer to win it for the Blazers. Here are multi-angle video highlights of Lillard’s game-winning shot:

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