Kris Humphries will likely play a role in the Atlanta Hawks’ Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Cleveland Cavaliers, according to ATL coach Mike Budenholzer.
The late-season acquisition appeared in just one of the Hawks’ six playoff games against the Celtics in the first round. The center played 8:48 in a Game 5 blowout win, entering in the fourth quarter with the Hawks leading by 29 points. Budenholzer chose to use a combination of Mike Muscala and Mike Scott to combat the smaller and quicker lineup the Celtics used in the series. Humphries had five DNP-CDs.
— Atlanta Journal Constitution
By InsideHoops.com editor Jeff Lenchiner
(Note: I am typing this entire blog entry on my cellphone while in a cab around 11:15pm Friday night and not editing this, so I insist that you forgive and ignore any typos)
Friday night in Charlotte the Miami Heat beat the Hornets 97-90 to tie their first round NBA playoff series at three games apiece.
A minor side story was “Purple Shirt Guy” — an unnamed fan (if he’s famous, we didn’t recognize him) with a great courtside seat, quickly nicknamed Purple Shirt Guy because, why not.
He was standing up and loudly taunting veteran Heat star Dwyane Wade, who responded with some huge clutch baskets.
My opinion is that while fans close to the court have a right to stand up and be enthusiastic, I’m not sure that SUSTAINED yelling by a fan as he is out of his seat at a player should be allowed, especially if the fan is courtside and therefore very close to the players.
I’m not sure exactly where the league should draw the line. Naturally they should err in favor of passionate fans. But in this sort of situation in the future, perhaps a security guard needs to encourage him/her to get back into their seat and stay there.
Tough call. But Purple Shirt Guy in Charlotte did, in my opinion, cross the line slightly. Players have to feel comfortable and protected.
The good news is, D-Wade sure appeared to feel fine as he suddenly drained key three-pointers and rose up like the star he’s been for many years.
The Charlotte Hornets announced today that center Spencer Hawes underwent a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) which revealed a sprain of the medial collateral ligament (MCL) in his right knee. Hawes is listed as out for Game 6 tomorrow night in Charlotte and will be re-evaluated in a week. He suffered the injury during the Hornets win in Game 5 last night in Miami. Hawes has appeared in five playoff games for Charlotte with averages of 3.6 points (.462 FG%) and 3.2 rebounds in 10.6 minutes per game.
The Hornets currently lead the Heat 3-2 in their first round NBA playoff series.
The Sacramento Kings today hired Ken Catanella as Assistant General Manager.
Catanella has more than ten years of experience in player negotiation, contracts, statistical scouting systems and a comprehensive understanding of the salary cap. He joins the Kings front office after serving the Detroit Pistons for nearly five years as Director of Basketball Operations and Assistant General Manager. Prior to the Pistons, Catanella worked for the NBA and the New Jersey Nets.
“We are focused on building a winning team and part of that process is ensuring we have a sound front office structure,” said Divac. “We are thrilled that Ken Catanella is joining the Kings to help us build on our progress and drive success on the court. Ken’s unique statistical and player expertise will provide a significant boost to our basketball operations team.”
In his role with the Kings, Catanella will function as the organization’s salary cap specialist, support Divac with personnel decisions and day-to-day management of the basketball operations department and assist with the team’s statistical and analytical systems.
A graduate of Amherst College where he played and coached, Catanella’s professional experience includes a stint on Wall Street where he provided analytics to sports franchises examining arena financing. While earning his MBA at Duke University, he served as a graduate assistant to the Blue Devils Men’s Basketball team from 2004-06. Catanella also played professional basketball for the Bundesliga’s Cologne 99ers of the German League and later served as the assistant general manager for the 99ers.
The New York Knicks are currently built around forwards Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis. Those are the key players right now. But while Porzingis just finished a very solid rookie season, Melo is the star. And if there’s one guy that Knicks boss Phil Jackson would consult with about a decision that greatly affects the entire team, it’s Melo. Here’s the New York Post reporting:
Carmelo Anthony’s input hasn’t been needed, or asked for, yet.
The Knicks star forward has yet to speak to Knicks president Phil Jackson about the ongoing coaching search, but plans to be involved at some point, after raising concerns late in another dreary season about the direction of the franchise and wanting to be involved in the decision-making process.
“I hope so,” he said on “The Dan Patrick Show” on Thursday when asked if he would have a role in who the next coach is.
One thing Anthony feels certain of is that Tom Thibodeau would have accepted the Knicks job had it been offered.
The Kings finished 33-49 this season and as expected, were not a contender to qualify for the playoffs.
Today, they changed things up in the team branding department, revealing a new logo. Check it out:
Link: New Sacramento Kings logo
Washington Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld announced today that Scott Brooks has been hired as the team’s new head coach. Brooks will become the 24th head coach in franchise history. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not released.
“I am beyond thrilled to return to coaching with a team that is filled with such potential and to be able to join an organization that is committed to helping us reach our goals,” said Brooks. “I’m very grateful to Ted Leonsis and Ernie Grunfeld for this opportunity and I can promise the great fans of Washington that we will work extremely hard both on and off the court to represent them in a manner fitting the most powerful city in the world.”
Brooks joins the Wizards after serving as the Oklahoma City Thunder’s head coach for seven seasons (2008-09 through 2014-15). With Brooks at the helm, the Thunder amassed a 338-207 (.620) record, tallied four 50-plus win seasons (including 60 wins in 2012-13), made three appearances in the Western Conference Finals (2011, 2012, 2014), and advanced to the 2012 NBA Finals.
“Scott’s approach to the game, track record for player development and ability to communicate with his players made him the clear-cut choice to guide our team as we continue to rise as contenders in the Eastern Conference,” said Monumental Sports & Entertainment Founder and Wizards Majority Owner Ted Leonsis. “His accomplishments as a coach are matched only by his sterling reputation around the league and we’re confident that our fans and players alike will embrace and support him as he leads the way.”
Brooks was named the 2009-10 NBA Coach of the Year after guiding OKC to a 50-32 record in his first full season as head coach and leading the team to a 27-win improvement (tied for the eighth-largest in NBA history). He also was twice named as head coach for the Western Conference All-Star Team (2012 and 2014). Brooks was originally promoted to head coach of the Thunder on April 15, 2009, after being named interim head coach on Nov. 22, 2008.
Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr, whose team won a league-record 73 games, has won the Red Auerbach Trophy as the 2015-16 NBA Coach of the Year. He is the Warriors’ first winner since coach Don Nelson in the 1991-92 season.
Kerr, in his second season as Warriors head coach, got 64 first-place votes and 381 total points from a panel of 130 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. The Portland Trail Blazers’ Terry Stotts, who guided his team to the playoffs with four new starters, finished second with 37 first-place votes and 335 total points. Three-time winner Gregg Popovich of the San Antonio Spurs was third with 10 first-place votes and 166 total points. Coaches were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote.
Under Kerr and assistant coach Luke Walton, who served as interim head coach until Kerr returned from back-surgery complications in January, the Warriors (73-9) posted the best regular-season record in league history, eclipsing the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls (72-10). The defending NBA champions opened the season 24-0, the best start in league history, which pushed their overall regular-season winning streak to 28 games, the second longest of all time.
The Warriors set NBA records for single-season road victories (34) and consecutive home regular-season wins (54, including 18 victories to finish last season), and went 39-2 at Oracle Arena for the second season in a row. Golden State also became the first team to go through a season without losing two games in a row or losing to the same team twice.
The Raptors and Pacers are tied 2-2 in their first round NBA playoff series. Raptors guards Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan haven’t been at their best, to put it lightly. Looking at this as Glass Half Full, things can only get better — right? We’ll see. Here’s the Toronto Sun reporting:
Kyle Lowry can tell you to the third decimal what he is shooting in the playoffs.
And even if he’s not happy about that particular number he is not at liberty to grouse about it or let it affect him.
“I’d be lying to you if I said I’m not upset at how I’m playing,” Lowry said. “But I’ve got to be positive. At the end of the day my teammates bank on me to be positive and lead these guys, and that’s what I’m going to do no matter how I’m shooting the ball, I’ve got to make sure my teammates are positive and confident.”
And on that front he has been for the most part successful.
DeRozan and Lowry both know they need to shoot the ball better but getting frustrated over it is not something either will allow himself.
“No, not at all. I’m not frustrated,” DeRozan said Sunday following practice.
Here’s the Detroit Free Press reporting on the Pistons, who were eliminated yesterday by the Cavs in the first round of the 206 NBA playoffs:
Cold-blooded threes by Kyrie Irving and J.R. Smith were monumental in the Cavaliers sweeping the Pistons with the 100-98 victory Sunday night at the Palace.
For the series, Cleveland made 57 threes for the series, a little more than 14 per game.
Irving’s triples were of the spectacular variety.
His final one, with 43.2 seconds left and the shot clock running down, gave the Cavaliers a 100-96 cushion.
As the buzzer sounded, Irving waved good-bye to the Pistons crowd as he finished with 31 points and averaged 27.5 points per game for the series.
“For our team it doesn’t matter who is the leading scorer,” said LeBron James, who finished with 22 points and 11 rebounds Sunday. “The fact that he was in a great groove throughout this whole series. … We rode his coattail, we rode Kev’s (Kevin Love).