The city of New Orleans is going to have a shorter-than-usual wait between NBA All-Star Games.
According to a report by Jimmy Smith of the New Orleans Times-Picayune, NBA Commissioner David Stern was expected to announce Monday afternoon that the 2014 All-Star Game will take place at the New Orleans Arena. The announcement will come at a press conference where Stern is scheduled to introduce New Orleans Saints owner Tom Benson as the new owner of the Hornets.
New Orleans last hosted the All-Star Game in 2008, the first major professional sporting event to be held in the city following Hurricane Katrina. The city has since returned to its hosting duties for the Sugar Bowl in 2007, and is scheduled to host the Super Bowl next year for the first time since 2002.
Orlando hosted this year's game, its first year as All-Star host since 1992. The Toyota Center in Houston will host its second All-Star Game in seven years next season, the same span between All-Star Games at the Staples Center in Los Angeles (2004, 2011). Longer waits are more common, however: Dallas hadn't hosted the NBA's midseason showcase since 1986 before the 2011 game at Cowboys Stadium, and Phoenix went 14 years between All-Star Games, hosting in 1995 and 2009.
The deal between the Hornets and the state of Louisiana to renew the team's lease - announced on March 16 - included a future All-Star Game. The Arena is scheduled to go through a renovation over the next two off-seasons, with the first phase scheduled to be completed before the All-Star Game is played.
---Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol is day-to-day with a bone bruise on his left knee, as revealed on Monday by an MRI.
Gasol, 27, received the MRI late Sunday night after injuring his knee in the fourth quarter of Memphis' 88-75 loss in New Orleans. The Spaniard leads the Grizzlies (35-25, second in Southwest Division) in both rebounds (9.4 RPG) and blocks (1.9 BPG), and is second on the team in scoring (15.0 PPG) behind forward Rudy Gay and assists (3.2 APG) behind point guard Mike Conley.
According to a report in the Memphis Commercial Appeal, Gasol is unlikely to be in the lineup on Tuesday night, when the Grizzlies travel to Minnesota to face the Timberwolves.
---Charlotte Bobcats forward Reggie Williams has a concussion, and is unlikely to play on Monday night, when the Bobcats host the New Orleans Hornets.
The injury was reported on Twitter by Charlotte Observer beat writer Rick Bonnell (@rick_bonnell). The injury occurred on Sunday night during the second half of Charlotte's 94-82 loss to the Boston Celtics. It was the 16th consecutive loss for the Bobcats.
Williams, 25, is averaging a career-low 8.5 points per game on career-worst .415 shooting.
---The Golden State Warriors are beefing up their bench, as the team has signed 7-foot center Mikki Moore from the Idaho Stampede of the NBA Development League.
Moore, 36, last played in the NBA in the 2009-10 season, when he averaged five points and three rebounds per game in 23 appearances for the Warriors. He's averaging 11 points and 7.3 rebounds per game in 33 games for Idaho this season.
---There isn't really an award the NBA offers that fits Jeremy Lin's headline-making season in 2011-12, but the New York Knicks guard is on a short list for one trophy.
Lin was announced Monday as the Atlantic Division's finalist for the Joe Dumars Trophy, which recognizes the NBA player who "most exemplifies the ideals of sportsmanship on the court." He's one of four point guards among the six finalists, along with Dallas' Jason Kidd (Southwest Division), Minnesota's Like Ridnour (Northwest) and Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers (Pacific). Cleveland Cavaliers forward Antawn Jamison and Miami Heat swingman Shane Battier are the other two finalists, representing the Central and Southeast Divisions, respectively.
---The Washington Wizards added a former first-round pick to their lineup Monday, when they signed Morris Almond from the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Development League.
Almond, 27, was a star in college at Rice University, where he was named the Conference USA Player of the Year in 2007. However, after being drafted in the first round (25th overall), the 6-foot-5 guard struggled to find his game at the NBA level. He played in just 34 games in two seasons with the Jazz, averaging 3.1 points per game on 38.5 percent shooting.