Ball Don't Lie
- Ben Rohrbach at Ball Don't Lie50 mins ago
Despite an impressive victory against the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday night, no team’s win percentage has fallen so sharply in the second half of the season as the Dallas Mavericks', who transformed from a team that won two-thirds of its games to a .500 club soon after the New Year.
Rajon Rondo has become the easy scapegoat, since the change came a few weeks after Dallas acquired him in exchange for their previous starting point guard (Jameer Nelson) and a pair of role players (Brandan Wright, Jae Crowder) who were key contributors to the team’s 20-8 start.
- Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie2 hrs ago
Since retiring from the NBA in 1963 and again after a brief return to action in 1970, Bob Cousy has seen plenty of incredible defensive-minded big men. The 86-year old, who winters in Florida, doesn’t have to hover over NBA League Pass every night to see all manner of rim protectors cabled to him on either national TV, or through local Miami Heat broadcasts.
Those Heat have had an up and down year, as partially exemplified by the ascension or former journeyman center Hassan Whiteside. And just 41 games into Whiteside’s career with the Heat – that’s half an NBA season – Bob Cousy has seen enough.
In a good way. He's now comparing Whiteside to the legendary Bill Russell. From Bill Doyle at the Telegram & Gazette:
- Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie2 hrs ago
Over a four-day stretch that began last Friday, the Washington Wizards lost road games to the Los Angeles Clippers, the Sacramento Kings, and the Golden State Warriors by a combined 68 points, and the NBA barely blinked. The team’s coaching staff and players may have gone sullen, and the team’s fan base may have lost its collective mind, but the league as a whole chalked it up to just another case of Wizards going Wizard.
Wednesday was supposed to change that. A seemingly alert and angry Wizards team lined up against the only other Eastern Conference playoff contender struggling just as much as the Wizards were (and, spoiler alert, are ) – an Indiana team that had lost six straight games. The Pacers then proceeded slap the Pacers around in their own building for three quarters before John Wall’s 24-point second half dragged an unwilling Washington squad back into a time game during the final stages.
With under ten seconds left, as he’s done for most of the season, George Hill went to work:
- Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie4 hrs ago
The Cleveland Cavaliers destroyed the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday night, slicing and dicing the NBA's third-stingiest defense to the tune of 111 points, 30 assists on 43 made field goals and 14 3-pointers, rolling up a 29-point lead on the road against the second-best team in the Western Conference. The dominant, leave-no-doubt win — which Grizzlies talismen Tony Allen deemed an "old fashioned beat down" and Zach Randolph said left him with "a sick feeling in [his] stomach" — improved the Cavs to 28-6 since Jan. 15, the day after their famed bowling trip, which marked their second game with a rejuvenated LeBron James rejoining the new-look starting lineup remade via midseason trades by general manager David Griffin.
- Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie5 hrs ago
On Tuesday night, away from the prying eyes of most of the NBA world — which is to say, during the broadcast of the matchup between the lottery-bound Sacramento Kings and Philadelphia 76ers — something beautiful happened. Luckily for us, Sixers fan/SPIN contributor Andrew Unterberger was there to witness it and relay it to the rest of us:
My closed captioning just referred to Nik Stauskas as "Sauce Castillo" and I will never be able to not call him this again
Deadspin went back and pulled the closed-captioned footage from Tuesday night, and sure enough, the Kings were on that Sauce:
Being a right-minded individual, I instantly loved the idea of calling Nik Stauskas "Sauce Castillo."
- Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie6 hrs ago
To be honest, I don't even know why a Cleveland-area business would try to get LeBron James, Kyrie Irving or Kevin Love to appear in its commercials. I mean, Timofey Mozgov is sitting right there , and he is so good at it , especially when "it" includes swatting a plate of food to the ground:
The full run of the Cleveland Cavaliers' hulking Russian center's dialogue in this ad for The Brew Garden:
Now, granted, there are a couple of less-than-smooth elements of this production — Mozzy's eyes darting off-camera, presumably to revisit the cue cards, and, of course, the fact that he has to wear his jersey backward so that people know A) he is a basketball player on the local basketball team and B) which player he is — but generally speaking, I think we can agree that this [swats plate of food to the ground] is a slam dunk of a local commercial.
- Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie7 hrs ago
Tim Duncan's been an awful lot of things in his illustrious 18-year career — an NBA champion (five times), an All-Star (15 times), the league's Most Valuable Player (two times), the NBA Finals' Most Valuable Player (three times), an All-NBA selection (14 times, including 10 first-team nods), an All-Defensive Team pick (14 times, eight first-team choices) and so much more. One thing he's never been, though, is a floor spacer. Heading into Wednesday's action, the "Big Fundamental" had attempted just 199 3-pointers in 1,553 combined regular-season and postseason games, making 34 of them.
- Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie19 hrs ago
The Houston Rockets made it very clear that Dwight Howard's return to the court in Wednesday's visit to the New Orleans Pelicans would not find the eight-time All-Star pushing the limits of the sore right knee that had kept him out since January 23. Based on that expectation, Howard's first game back was a success, even if it provided few opportunities to judge his current level of play.
Howard started and played his as-expected 16 minutes in the Rockets' 95-93 victory over the Pelicans, logging four points (2-of-3 FG), seven rebounds (all defensive), two assists, a block, and four fouls in a clearly secondary role. The mere fact that he played in a real NBA game is good news for the Rockets as they jockey for seeding and prepare for the playoffs, but this game also served as a reminder that Howard is not at his typical star level and may not be at any point again this season.
- Ball Don't Lie Staff at Ball Don't Lie19 hrs ago
With just a few weeks remaining until the NBA postseason, every night can impact the standings. The NBA Playoff Picture Update keeps you up to date on all the most important news for all 16 berths and seeds.
Pamplona status: The Toronto Raptors held an 11-point lead midway through the third quarter but spit the bit down the stretch, getting absolutely overwhelmed in the fourth by a Chicago Bulls club led by a somewhat unlikely lineup.
As of Tuesday, the five-man unit of Pau Gasol, Nikola Mirotic, Jimmy Butler, Tony Snell and Aaron Brooks had shared the court for all of nine minutes this season, outscoring opponents by a total of two points. That group closed out the Raptors on Wednesday, topping Toronto by a whopping 13 points over the final five minutes and change, finishing off a fourth quarter in which the Bulls got whatever they wanted against the Raptors' hapless defense.
- Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie20 hrs ago
The fight for the final two playoff spots in the Eastern Conference has been one of the tightest races in the NBA this season, with positions changing seemingly every day as several teams attempt to become humongous underdogs to the Atlanta Hawks and Cleveland Cavaliers in the opening round of the postseason. A strong second half has allowed the Indiana Pacers to become one of those squads, although a three-game losing streak had sent them from a potential upset pick to a team just trying to claw its way back into the top eight in the standings. The Pacers entered Wednesday night's road game against the Washington Wizards — themselves in the midst of a four-game losing streak — needing a win to keep up with the competition.Thu, Mar 268:00 PM EDTIndiana at MilwaukeePreview Game