Archive for November 14th, 2017

Nets put up good fight vs Celtics

The Celtics came to Brooklyn Tuesday and left town with their NBA-leading 13th win in a row. Boston looked great in the first quarter, but then the Nets stepped up and made a game out of it. Here’s the New York Post with more:

Facing the hottest team in the NBA was going to be an uphill climb for the Nets under the best circumstances. But doing it without their two point guards — and arguably two best players — proved too much to handle.

With D’Angelo Russell out indefinitely with a knee injury and Jeremy Lin already sidelined for the season, also with a knee injury, the Nets were game, but woefully shorthanded against the Celtics. And scalding-hot Boston predictably proved to be too much, with the Nets falling 109-102 in a tightly contested affair Tuesday.

Hearing Boston fans take over the Barclays Center was just salt in the Nets’ various wounds, and listening to them serenade New Jersey-bred Celtics star Kyrie Irving with chants of “MVP!” as he took free throws with two minutes left was an added insult. But to be fair, Irving looked the part, dominating in his return from a facial fracture and then giving his shoes to some troops seated courtside.

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And for more on the “relationship” between these two teams, here’s ESPN Boston:

In the aftermath of that late-game alley-oop, the remaining Nets fans were left to watch Brown and Tatum engage in a celebratory body-bump near midcourt. It was a painful reminder of what could have been.

Both Brown and Tatum, along with Irving, were delivered to Boston by direct result of the draft picks the Nets sent the Celtics as part of the 2013 blockbuster that sent Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Jason Terry to Brooklyn.

This was the first time since 2013 that Boston played a game against Brooklyn that didn’t have implications on a future pick, and Celtics fans had often utilized the hashtag #Netspick while basking in Brooklyn’s recent struggles. On Tuesday, Celtics fans simply enjoyed watching the exploits of their past picks.

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Nic Batum set to return for Hornets

The Hornets are about to get a super versatile piece of their roster back in the form of Nic Batum, who reportedly may return as early as tomorrow. Here is the Charlotte Observer reporting:

Barring a “drastic” and unexpected setback, Nic Batum will play — and start — Wednesday against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Charlotte Hornets’ nationally-televised home game Wednesday.

That was coach Steve Clifford’s statement, after Batum practiced for a third consecutive day. He has missed the Hornets’ first 11 regular-season games and most of the preseason, after he tore a ligament in his left elbow Oct. 4. Playing Wednesday (8 p.m., ESPN) would mean Batum returns at the minimum of the projected six to eight weeks he’d miss with the injury.

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Joe Johnson out with hand injury

Jazz forward Joe Johnson consulted with a hand specialist on Tuesday and is showing progress to make a return. He will be reevaluated in two weeks.

Now in his 17th season, Johnson (6-7, 240, Arkansas) has appeared in seven games averaging 6.4 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 19.2 minutes per contest.

The Knicks were in control of the Cavs Monday in New York. And then the 4th quarter happened, and Cleveland came away with a win. As for Knicks star Kristaps Porzingis, here’s the New York Post reporting:

It was a rare off night for Kristaps Porzingis. Maybe it was LeBron James. Maybe it was the new contraption on his elbow.

With James hounding him at times, Porzingis fell short of his now-usual 30 points. And for the first time he wore a long white right elbow sleeve for his bursitis, a condition that may need postseason surgery.

Previously Porzingis, who has admitted to lingering swelling, had only donned the sleeve during practice so it wouldn’t affect his shooting motion. But after shooting just 7-of-21 for 20 points in the 104-101 Knicks’ collapse, he may ditch it. It was only the fourth time in the 12 games he’s played this season he didn’t score at least 30 points.

“It was for extra protection for the elbow,’’ Porzingis said. “It didn’t help as much. If I fell on it, it hits so hard, the little protection didn’t do anything.’’

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