Grizzlies rout Timberwolves 124-96 to tie series at 1 apiece
Ja Morant scored 23 points and handed out 10 assists as the Memphis Grizzlies looked much more like the team that posted the NBA’s second-best record, routing the Minnesota Timberwolves 124-96 to even up their first-round Western Conference series at 1 apiece.
Beverley, Hill ejected in feisty Bucks-Timberwolves matchup
Minnesota's Patrick Beverley and Milwaukee's George Hill were both ejected in the first quarter Saturday in a matchup between the surging Timberwolves and defending champion Bucks. Milwaukee's Serge Ibaka and Minnesota's Taurean Prince got tied up after a Timberwolves free throw attempt and were talking to each other when Beverley raced in and pushed Ibaka.news.yahoo.com
AP source: Nuggets acquire center JaVale McGee from Cavs
(AP Photo/Ron Schwane)DENVER – The Denver Nuggets are bringing back center JaVale McGee in a trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers, according to a person with knowledge of the deal. The 33-year-old McGee averaged eight points and 5.2 rebounds in 15.2 minutes per game for the Cavs this season. A three-time NBA champion with Golden State and Los Angeles, McGee brings plenty of playoff experience to the Nuggets. McGee has been invaluable to the Cavs this season, serving not only as a backup but mentor to the team’s young core. Hartenstein shoved McGee, and although he scored just two points, his gesture meant much more to his coaches and teammates.
Murray scores historic 50 as Nuggets down crumbling Cavs
Denver Nuggets' Jamal Murray (27) drives to the basket against Cleveland Cavaliers' Cedi Osman (16) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, Feb. 19, 2021, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)CLEVELAND – Not himself of late, Jamal Murray got a lecture from Nuggets coach Michael Malone about being more aggressive and not passing up open shots. Following the game, Murray was unaware that he had done something unique. “With the exception of Murray, we took some steps in the right direction,” Cavs coach J.B. Bickerstaff said. They made their first 12 shots, opened a 22-point lead in the second half and then let Murray close out the Cavs.
Game or no game, NBA All-Star voting starts Thursday
(AP Photo/Tony Dejak)NBA All-Star voting opens Thursday, without any final determination yet if there will be an actual All-Star Game this season. The league said Wednesday that “discussions surrounding a potential NBA All-Star Game are ongoing.” The Associated Press reported Monday that there have been talks about having an All-Star Game that would benefit historically Black institutions and COVID-19 relief, though no plan has been finalized. But the league also wants players worthy of being named All-Stars this season to get their due, whether the game is played or not. The All-Star reserves, as selected by NBA head coaches, will be revealed on Feb. 23. It’s also unknown if the game would have the same format as a year ago, when the NBA changed the rules to make the game much more competitive.
Cavaliers ship Kevin Porter Jr. to Rockets for draft pick
FILE - Cleveland Cavaliers' Kevin Porter Jr., right, drives past Indiana Pacers' Victor Oladipo in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Cleveland, in this Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020, file photo. Kevin Porter quickly went from being a future star with the Cavaliers to part of their past. Cleveland finalized its trade with Houston on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021, sending Porter to the Rockets for a future second-round draft pick. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)CLEVELAND – Kevin Porter quickly went from being a future star with the Cavaliers to part of their past. “After careful and thoughtful evaluation, we made the very difficult and collective decision to make this trade,” Cavs general manager Koby Altman said.
AP source: Cavs trading Porter to Rockets for future pick
FILE - Cleveland Cavaliers' Kevin Porter Jr. drives against the Philadelphia 76ers in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Cleveland, in this Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2020, file photo. The Cavaliers are moving on from troubled and talented forward Kevin Porter Jr., a person familiar with his standing with the team told the Associated Press on Monday, Jan. 18, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File)CLEVELAND – Kevin Porter Jr. is no longer a problem for the Cavaliers. The Cavs will send Porter, the 2019 first-round draft pick who hasn't played this season and recently had an outburst in the team's locker room, to the Rockets for a protected second-round pick. Porter had only returned to practice with the Cavs a day earlier after they had spent months trying to help him.
Irving returns, but new-look Nets beaten by Cavs in 2 OTs
Cleveland Cavaliers' Larry Nance Jr. (22) steals a pass intended for Brooklyn Nets' Kyrie Irving (11) during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021, in Cleveland. Sexton scored 15 points in the second OT — most of them over Irving — for the Cavs, who outplayed the Nets all night. Before the game, Nets first-year coach Steve Nash admitted being “curious” about how his trio of superstars would align on the floor. In the second quarter, Sexton ran back on defense and cleanly flicked the ball away from Durant as he was going in on a breakaway dunk. Irving's return to the Nets was also just his second game in Cleveland since he was traded by the Cavs after the 2017 season.
Nets GM: Superstars will sacrifice to make Harden trade work
Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) passes the ball against the Los Angeles Lakers during the third quarter of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2021, in Houston. But only the commitment from the three players will allow the Nets to fully utilize it and Marks is confident he secured that from his own players and from Harden. “I think he’s looking for a fresh start and I think these guys are going to have to sacrifice without a doubt,” Marks said. The Nets will have to fill out a roster that has holes, though Marks said he won't rush that. If they do, the Nets might meet the expectations that Marks said he won't run from.
VanVleet, Powell lead Raptors past Nets 104-99 for 2-0 lead
The victory gave the Raptors a 2-0 lead in the first round plyoff series. Kyle Lowry had 21 points, nine rebounds and forced a big turnover in the closing seconds for the second seeded Raptors. But this game was much closer as the Nets built a 14-point lead in the first quarter. Toronto was in control after that, stretching the lead to eight on Powell's drive and dunk from the right wing. Caris LeVert had 16 points and 11 rebounds, Jarrett Allen and Joe Harris each had 14 points and 15 rebounds for the Nets.
Caris LeVert's 34 lead Nets past Wizards, 118-110
The Nets moved seven games ahead of ninth-place Washington in the Eastern Conference standings, and now the Wizards hopes of forcing a play-in series are fading. Thomas Bryant had a career-high 30 points and 13 rebounds, and Troy Brown Jr. added 22 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists for the Wizards. The Nets are without DeAndre Jordan, Spencer Dinwiddie and Taurean Prince because of positive coronavirus tests before the restart. His 170 jams last season tied Kenyon Martin (2002-03) for the most in a season since the stat first was kept during the 1997-98 season. He is in his first season with the Nets after signing a two-way contract with the team in January.
Magic beat Nets 128-118 in restart opener, move up to 7th
They extended their winning streak to four and moved back ahead of the Nets into seventh place in the Eastern Conference. The Magic outscored the Nets 75-43 in the middle two quarters, allowing them to overcome some shaky defense at the start and finish. So Brooklyn started two players who hadn't started an NBA game this season one who never had. Veteran Jamal Crawford, signed as a substitute player after not playing in the NBA this season, did not play. Nets: Play Washington on Sunday.
Nets slow down Harden, Rockets in 123-116 victory
Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie (8) guards Houston Rockets guard Russell Westbrook (0) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, in New York. Taurean Prince had 27 points and 12 rebounds, and the Nets slowed down Harden and the Houston Rockets in a 123-116 victory Friday night. They went 12 for 48 from 3-point range, with Harden a dismal 2 for 16 in the face of an improved Nets defense and Atkinson's unusual sign. The Nets went from a 23-18 lead going into a timeout to 23-15 coming out of it. Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni was asked what Westbrook's presence prevents teams from doing against Harden that they could do before.