Boston’s rebounding woes are nothing new; but are they fixable?



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WALTHAM, Mass. — During one of his pregame radio interviews in early February, Boston Celtics Jerseys coach Brad Stevens was informed that his team was no longer in last place in the NBA in defensive rebound percentage.

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“We’re not? Did a team drop out of the league?” Stevens deadpanned.

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The Celtics entered the 2016-17 season with the smallest roster in the league. Routinely quizzed on how Boston could overcome the rebounding deficiencies inherent from its lack of size, Stevens would joke that it was unlikely his team was going to endure a growth spurt so his players would simply have to put an increased priority on boxing out and hope guards could help clean up the glass.

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The Celtics finished the season ranked 27th in both defensive (75.3) and total rebound (48.5) percentages. For much of the season, 6-foot-2 guard Avery Bradley led Boston in rebounds per game before Al Horford overtook him late in the year. Even still, Horford’s 6.8 rebounds per game ranked 45th overall in the NBA.

All of that says that rebounding has been an issue for Boston throughout the season. And those struggles were back in the spotlight on Sunday night when the Chicago Bulls Jerseys turned 20 offensive rebounds into 23 second-chance points as part of a 106-102 Game 1 triumph at TD Garden.

The Celtics finished the night by grabbing just 54.5 percent of available defensive rebounds cheap jerseys, a jarringly low number considering the league average is more than 20 percent higher. Boston was actually far more competitive in the second half but still had instances where second-chance opportunities negated otherwise strong first-shot defensive stands.

When his team huddled to watch film on Monday afternoon at the team’s practice facility, Stevens implored his players to initiate contact when shots go up.

“You’re not going to get every defensive rebound, but you’ve got to hit first,” Stevens said. “And you can’t wait to make contact when [Robin] Lopez is running into the paint. If he’s at the charge circle, he’s winning that battle. The same thing if somebody’s running from the corner to get an offensive rebound. You can’t wait until they get into the paint to make contact. You’ve got to block out sooner than that.

“That doesn’t guarantee you’re gonna get it every time, but that gives you a better chance.”

The Celtics’ big men acknowledged that the team’s issues were rather obvious on film.

“There’s just stuff that we can clean up,” starting center Amir Johnson said. “Some guys were just caught staring, looking at the ball, instead of just hitting the body and going and getting it. It’s just all-out effort and you just gotta continue doing your job; the play never stops until a person gets the rebound. Once you do your job defensively, you get in your defensive coverages, and then the shot finally goes out wholesale nba jerseys, sometimes you just get caught staring at the shot like, ‘OK, I’ve done my job.’ But the job isn’t over until you actually get in front of your man and get the ball.

• Schedule | BPI odds | Forecast | Vote!
• The Grizz can’t stop Kawhi Leonard
&#8226 Winners, losers after opening weekend
• Portis plays game of his life for Bulls
• Isaiah plays through heartbreak
• Beverley leads Rockets in opener
• Beard’s Rockets takes first over Russ
• It’s Dray all day for Warriors’ opener
• “>LeBron’s all-time top playoff games
• Upsets? Series that could surprise
• Experts’ first-round picks: East | West

“It’s a team effort. That’s a big key to winning that game. I thought our half-court defense was pretty good besides [the fact that] it seemed like, if they put up a shot and missed, they got the ball and put the ball back in the basket. Our cheap jerseys half-court defense was definitely up to par. We just gotta rebound.”

Not unlike most teams, the Celtics have pronounced splits in how they rebound in wins versus losses. During the regular season, Boston owned a defensive rebound rate of 76.6 percent in its 53 wins. It dipped to 72.8 percent in its 29 losses.

It’s prudent to remember that defensive rebound rate is not the primary indicator of team success. The Golden State Warriors Jerseys ranked 29th in the NBA in grabbing just 74.9 percent of available defensive rebounds and still won 67 games. Likewise, height isn’t necessarily an excuse for rebounding woes, as the Cleveland Cavaliers Jerseys were the second-shortest team to start the season and finished in the top 12 in defensive rebound percentage.

For Boston, rebounding comes down to effort and commitment. It’s a fairly good indicator of how engaged the Celtics are on a game-to-game basis. Maybe Chicago’s Jimmy Butler summed up rebounding best on Monday after gushing about how Lopez impacted Sunday’s Game 1 win.

“If you want to go get the ball, you’re going to go get the ball. Rebounding is 95 percent effort, 5 percent technique,” Butler said. “Same thing with the defensive part. If you want to do it, you’re gonna do it. If you don’t, you won’t.”

The Celtics must come out committed to rebounding on Tuesday night. The Bulls, post-All-Star break (and post-Taj Gibson trade), ranked in the back half of the league in offensive rebound percentage. Boston isn’t going to get to every rebound, but giving up 16 first-half offensive rebounds, like the Celtics did on Sunday, cannot happen again.

Simply being competitive on the glass is clearly important against the Bulls. In Chicago’s three head-to-head wins over Boston this season, including Sunday, the Bulls outrebounded the Celtics by 17, 19 and 20 overall rebounds, respectively.

Boston absolutely has other issues to address moving forward in this series, especially the question of who will step up when Isaiah Thomas is on the bench (the Celtics were outscored 27-11 without Thomas on Sunday). The Celtics must strive to avoid foul trouble, especially at the wing positions, in order to aggressively defend Butler throughout the game.

Rebounding will be the area most eyes are watching, however. The Celtics knew entering the series that they had to be competitive on the glass and were reminded of that on Sunday.

“[Rebounding] was the game. That’s the game. That’s the series,” Crowder said. “If we don’t rebound, we don’t win the series. It’s simple.”

Stephen Curry explains why he’s locked in but logged off



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OAKLAND, Calif. — With the NBA postseason underway, Golden State Warriors Jerseys All-Star point guard Stephen Curry told ESPN he has curtailed his social-media usage.

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Indeed, to further assist in avoiding “”unnecessary distractions,”” the two-time MVP says he deleted every social media application from his phone before Game 1 of the first-round series against the Portland cheap jerseys Trail Blazers Jerseys.

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We’ve got you covered all the way to the Finals with the latest news, schedules, analysis and more. 2017 NBA Playoffs »

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• Schedule | BPI odds | Forecast | Vote!
• Who believed in Bulls? The Bulls
• Clippers turn on power in Game 2
&#8226 Winners, losers after weekend
• Cavs Big 3 rules Game 2 win
• McCollum, Lillard seek to even score
• Grit, grind and center who shoots 3s
• “”>LeBron’s all-time top playoff games
• Upsets? Series that could surprise
• Experts’ first-round picks: East | West

“When you’re really trying to zone in and keep your focus, you don’t want to have any unnecessary distractions during this point of the season,” Curry told ESPN. “We have goals to accomplish, and you want to make sure you’re giving your all.”

Curry said this is the third consecutive year he has taken this approach cheap jerseys. It’s a routine he’s never disclosed before.

Cleveland Cavaliers Jerseys All-Star forward LeBron James is known for activating what he calls “Zero Dark Thirty-23” before postseason play. The Warriors point guard says he didn’t get the idea from James.

“I didn’t do it because he did it. I’m not reinventing the wheel,” Curry told ESPN. “It’s just a way to help me keep my focus on what’s important.”

James removes himself from the social media sphere entirely, refraining from tweeting and posting pictures. Curry goes about his social media ban a little differently. Moments before each game, Curry typically tweets out “Lock in #DubNation.” He didn’t do that on Sunday. He said he’ll occasionally send out a tweet or a picture, but he won’t log into his accounts to do so.

“I have a way of sending out messages without getting into my accounts,” Curry revealed wholesale basketball jerseys. “That way, I’m not seeing or reading something I’m trying to avoid.”

Curry registered 29 points, five rebounds and four assists in Sunday’s 121-109 victory, leading his team to a 1-0 series lead. Going without social media has apparently paid dividends.

“It’s worked for me so far,” Curry said. “I’m going to stay with it.”

Bulls’ belief in themselves paid dividends in Boston



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BOSTON — Jimmy Butler always believed in the possibilities.

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As the Chicago Bulls Jerseys meandered through one of the most up-and-down seasons in recent memory, Butler quietly held to the belief that all his team cheap jerseys had to do was get to the postseason and they could start anew. He didn’t care that the Bulls continued losing to some of the worst teams in the league during the last week of the regular season, the All-Star swingman was buoyed by the feeling that with him leading the way, and playoff-tested veterans Rajon Rondo and Dwyane Wade flanking him on each side, the Bulls had a legitimate chance to do some damage in the postseason.

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After watching the Bulls dominate the Boston Celtics Jerseys throughout long stretches of a 111-97 Game 2 Eastern Conference playoff victory on Tuesday night, Butler is proving to be correct in his assessment.

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The Bulls’ Dwyane Wade rebounded from a poor shooting performance in Game 1 with a 22-point effort on Tuesday night. Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

“”I’m not surprised because everybody’s so locked in right now,”” Butler said after scoring 22 points, grabbing eight rebounds and dishing out eight assists. “”Everybody’s putting in extra work right now, watching film, working on their game, and that’s where your confidence always comes from. We’ve got some great field generals out there in these two guys to help out and these younger guys, and to make sure they’re playing hard at both ends of the floor.””

The Bulls have looked nothing like the eighth-best team in the East, a seed they earned after backing into the postseason with a lackluster 41-41 record. They’ve simply outplayed the top-seeded Celtics throughout most of the first two games of this series cheap nba jerseys. Each time a frazzled Boston team tries to make a run, the Bulls have an answer.

“”You play the 82 games to learn a little bit about yourself,”” Wade said. “”And one thing I learned about this team is through adverse situations, this team sticks together. We had adversity as every team has, and that’s the thing that’s made us closer and stronger together. The credit for this team sticking together through injuries, through everything, putting ourselves in a position to make the playoffs, it goes to everyone, from the coaching staff, to the leaders, to the young guys — everyone did it together.””

We’ve got you covered all the way to the Finals with the latest news, schedules, analysis and more. 2017 NBA Playoffs »

• Schedule | BPI odds | Forecast | Vote!
• The Grizz can’t stop Kawhi Leonard
&#8226 Winners, losers after opening weekend
• Cavs Big 3 rules Game 2 win
• McCollum, Lillard seek to even score
• Grit, grind and center who shoots 3s
• “”>LeBron’s all-time top playoff games
• Upsets? Series that could surprise
• Experts’ first-round picks: East | West

To put the Bulls’ performance in some historical context, there’s only been one other No. 8 seed in history that went on the road and won its first two games. That would be the 1992-93 Los Angeles Lakers Jerseys, who went into Phoenix and earned two victories, then proceeded to drop the final three games of the five-game series.

The Bulls don’t look like a team that is ready to fall back into bad habits, though. The reality is that despite what the seedings say, the Bulls simply look like the better team through the first two games. Wade bounced back after a poor Game 1 showing to score 22 points, while Rondo was an assist shy of a triple-double with 11 points, 14 assists and nine rebounds to go along with five steals wholesale jerseys. The Bulls are playing with a level of trust together on the floor that they haven’t shown consistently all season.

“”We had our backs against the wall in the couple weeks leading into the situation we’re in right now where we had to win,”” Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg explained. “”And our guys did a good job of doing what had to be done to get us into the postseason. So, we’ve been playing high-pressure basketball for several weeks. I think that does help you when you come into playoff time.””

It has certainly seemed to help the Bulls’ role players as they get acclimated to the bright lights of the playoff stage. Two days after Bobby Portis played the game of his young career, scoring 19 points in Game 1, rookie Paul Zipser followed suit by coming out of seemingly nowhere to score 16 points. Combine this with the fact that Robin Lopez continued his steady play with 18 points and eight rebounds and the fact that the Bulls are playing some of their best defense of the season, and it’s easier to understand why they are feeling even more confident. If they can keep getting production from their younger players while Rondo, Wade and Lopez stabilize the starting unit, then Butler can do what he loves to do and take over the game late.

Check out the team site for more game coverage

Check out the team site for more game coverage

“”It’s really simple,”” Butler said. “”When I’m open, I normally shoot the ball. Sometimes when I’m not open, I also shoot the ball. But most of the time, I pass it to the open guy. And when they’re making shots, my job’s a lot easier. People can’t load up on me, and then on top of everything else, these two do a lot of that as well. When they’re attacking, they’re aggressive, they’re getting people involved as well. And getting stops. When we’re getting stops, we’re pretty tough.””

Now the Bulls head back to Chicago for what will surely be a raucous atmosphere in the United Center for Game 3 on Friday. In his 14-year career, Wade has never dropped a series in which his team had a 2-0 lead and the Bulls, led by Butler, Wade and Rondo, don’t expect to blemish that record.

“”You can’t be satisfied,”” Hoiberg said. “”You got to go home and keep playing. This is one of the better road teams in the league. We have to continue to go out and fight, continue to learn, continue to make adjustments and hopefully play well.””

Hornets owner Felix Sabates blasts NBA, Charlotte

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After the NBA moved the 2017 All-Star Game from Charlotte, North Carolina, because of the league’s objection to the state’s House Bill 2, the league issued a statement supporting the Hornets. However, one of the team’s owners is not ready to praise the decision.

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Hornets co-owner Felix Sabates sent an email to the team’s ownership grouping after the NBA’s announcement blasting the league and the Charlotte City Council.

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“Shame on those responsible for such a short sighted decision to take the NBA All Star away from Charlotte I always thought this was country that ALL peoples not just a few can determine our future,” he wrote in the email that was obtained by the Charlotte Observer.

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Sabates’ criticism comes after the Hornets and chairman Michael Jordan issued a statement on Thursday saying “we understand the NBA’s decision” and are “pleased that the NBA opened the door for Charlotte to host All-Star Weekend again as soon as an opportunity was available in 2019.” The NBA also weighed in defending the team and the city:

“It is also important to stress that the City of Charlotte and the Hornets organization have sought to provide an inclusive environment and that the Hornets will continue to ensure that all patrons — including members of the LGBT community — feel welcome while attending games and events in their arena,” the league said.

Michael Jordan and the Hornets issued a statement cheap jerseys supporting the league, but not all of the ownership team is onboard. Grant Halverson/Getty Images

HB2 reversed a Charlotte ordinance that added gay and transgender people to the list of classes of people protected against discrimination in the city.

“Our Mayor opened a can of worms, who knows why?” Sabates wrote. “One Our city council is the one to blame for our losing the NBA All Star game, none of this would have happened if not for a very few minority forcing our supposed city leaders into creating a problem that never really existed, there will always be another election, they better pray a very few can get them re-elected.

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“What is wrong with a person using a bathroom provided for the sex the (sic) were born with, if you want to change your gender so be it, we are a free county, but don’t force 8 years old children to be exposed to having to share bathroom facilities with people that don’t share the organs they were Bourne (sic) with, this is plain wrong, this could cause irreparable damages to a children’s that don’t understand why wholesale jerseys they have to see what God did not mean for them to witness, we have some very confused business as well as political humans that frankly have made this a political issue rather then (sic) moral issues, SHAME ON THEM.”

Mavs increase value of Dirk Nowitzki’s two-year deal

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The Dallas Mavericks Jerseys and face of the franchise Dirk Nowitzki have finalized their expected new deal with another bump in pay that sets up the star forward to earn $50 million over the next two seasons and play until age 40, league sources told ESPN.

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Sources said Friday that the Mavericks have tacked an additional $10 million onto the original two-year, $40 million contract that the sides, as ESPN first reported, agreed to earlier this month.

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The new pact, sources say, calls for Nowitzki to earn $25 million in each of the next two seasons, though he has said repeatedly that he will decide about playing beyond 2016-17 after gauging how he feels at season’s end.

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The second year of the contract, sources say, is fully guaranteed for $5 million of the $25 million at the Mavericks’ option, although any decision about Nowitzki’s playing future is expected to be made in conjunction with owner Mark Cuban, given the long-standing and close bond the two share.

“Dirk gets to do what Dirk wants,” Cuban said in June during a public appearance. “Period. End of story. … Dirk’s done so much for this franchise, he’s earned that opportunity.”

The significant spike in pay comes after the future Hall of Famer played on an ultra-steep discount for the past two seasons in which he earned $8 million-plus annually.

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Nowitzki’s previous contract was a three-year cheap jerseys, $25 million deal, which represented a hometown discount intended to provide the Mavericks with the salary-cap flexibility needed to construct a contender during his twilight years. The Mavs, however, missed on multiple free-agent targets and have failed to advance past the first round since their 2011 title run, although Nowitzki led them in scoring again this past season.

Dallas rallied from two early disappointments in free agency this summer and used its substantial salary-cap space to make some promising pickups. After being spurned by Miami’s Hassan Whiteside and Memphis’ Mike Conley, Dallas capitalized on the sudden availability of Harrison Barnes and Andrew Bogut in Golden State — in the wake of the Warriors’ success in the Kevin Durant sweepstakes — to agree on a four-year, $94.4 million max deal to sign Barnes and a trade to acquire Bogut.

In his 18-year career, Nowitzki has won an MVP award in both the regular season (2007) and NBA Finals (2011) to go with his 13 All-Star selections. With 29,491 career points, Nowitzki is also on pace to surpass Wilt Chamberlain and move into the top five on the league’s all-time scoring list during the 2017-18 season, as long as he avoids significant injury.

Nowitzki has acknowledged in the past that wholesale nba jerseys his decision to stay in Dallas would be much more difficult if the Mavs hadn’t broken through to win their first title in 2011. If he ends up playing two more seasons, Nowitzki would join Kobe Bryant as the only players in league history to spend an entire two-decade career with a single franchise.

Bosh out of All-Star Game due to calf

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TORONTO (AP) — Chris Bosh’s All-Star participation for this year is over, before he ever took the floor in the city where his career began.

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The Miami Heat Jerseys forward has withdrawn from Saturday’s 3-point contest and Sunday’s All-Star Game, citing a strained right calf. Bosh – who will cheap authentic nba jerseys remain in Toronto for the weekend – was replaced on the Eastern Conference roster for Sunday’s game by Atlanta’s Al Horford, chosen by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver to fill the vacated spot.

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Portland’s C.J. McCollum will fill Bosh’s spot in the 3-point event, keeping that field at eight as planned.

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”I am honored to be selected to participate in All-Star Weekend festivities and will still be here to support my cheap jerseys fellow East All-Stars,” Bosh said in a statement released through the Heat. ”But I will also use this weekend to try to heal and focus on the second half of the Heat season.”

Bosh’s injury and Horford’s addition to the roster were first reported by Yahoo Sports.

The circumstances of how and when Bosh strained his calf were not made clear. He worked out Wednesday night in Miami in preparation for the 3-point contest, flew to Toronto on Thursday and was in the audience at the NBA All-Star Technology Summit on Friday morning before joining the other East All-Star selections for interview sessions cheap authentic nba jerseys with reporters. View gallery MIAMI, FL – FEBRUARY 9: Chris Bosh #1 of the Miami Heat Jerseys warms up before the game against the San Ant …

Bosh did not mention the injury in that media day availability, nor in an subsequent brief interview with The Associated Press.

”I’m just happy to be here for myself and my family, to accomplish some things and some goals that I said I was going to do,” Bosh told AP when asked what reaction he expected wholesale nba jerseys from fans in Toronto, where he played his first seven pro seasons. ”It’s really cool to actually do them. It does have significance being here and being able to just really take in the experience and be an All-Star again in the city where I pretty much grew up.”

About four hours later, the NBA and the Heat announced Bosh wouldn’t play.

The timing of the injury, and that it’s a calf problem, have eerie similarities to the scare Bosh went through last season.

Shortly after the 2015 All-Star Game in New York, Bosh was diagnosed with a blood clot on his lung – which, he believes, formed when he was kicked in the calf during a game weeks earlier. The calf was a problem for several games, but the blood clot was the far more daunting challenge and forced him out of the second half of the season.Sports & RecreationChris BoshMiami Heat JerseysNBA

Hornets beat Nets to get back to .500

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Nicolas Batum returned to form and the Charlotte Hornets Jerseys returned to their winning ways.

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The Hornets’ leading scorer bounced back from a 1-of-9 shooting night to score 24 points and hand out eight assists, leading Charlotte to a 116-111 victory over the Brooklyn Nets Jerseys on Wednesday night.

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Batum was 7 of 12 from the field and made all seven foul shots.
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Batum had been hot before a 102-94 loss to the Knicks on Tuesday night. He won Eastern Conference player of the week honors after averaging 25.5 points per game last week.

”I tried to score and I tried to get my teammates involved and everything seemed to work better than (Tuesday) night,” Batum said.

Al Jefferson and Kemba Walker chipped in with 18 points apiece for the Hornets, who have won six of their last nine games to get back to .500 on the season.

Marvin Williams scored 14 points and Jeremy Lin had 13 points and off the bench for the Hornets (6-6).

The Hornets shot 11 of 25 from 3-point range to overcome 16 turnovers.

”Nic Batum is such a good playmaker as well as a scorer,” said Nets coach Lionel Hollins. ”He was making plays at the basket and when we had to help he got the ball back out to the 3-point line and they made them. ”

Thaddeus Young had 27 points on 11-of-17 shooting for the struggling Nets. Brook Lopez added 23 points and Jarrett Jack and Joe Johnson each had 16 for Brooklyn.

The Nets had several chances in the final two minutes, but failed to take advantage of two Charlotte turnovers.

Brooklyn ruined a golden opportunity to make it a one-possession game with two minutes left when Young missed an easy follow shot.

Lin turned the ball over with cheap nba jerseys 33 seconds left, but Lopez missed a short jumper.

A few seconds later Batum made an errant pass over the head of 7-foot center Spencer Hawes and out of bounds, but again the Nets failed to take advantage as Lopez was called for an illegal screen at midcourt.

”It could be a little fatigue, but there are no excuses for missed opportunities,” Young said of the Nets’ miscues. ”We had every chance to win that game and it slipped by us.” View gallery CHARLOTTE, NC – NOVEMBER 18: Thaddeus Young #30 of the Brooklyn Nets Jerseys shoots the ball against the Den …

SECOND GUESSING

Hollins said after the game he was still kicking himself for calling timeout after a Nets rebound with 31 seconds left and his team down by four points. In hindsight, he wished cheap nba basketball jerseys he’d allowed point guard Jarrett Jack to bring the ball up the floor.

”I should have just let him and maybe we would have gotten a two-for-one anyways,” Hollins said. ”We wound up not getting as good of a shot that we wanted.”

WINNING ON THE GLASS

Walker and Lin, Charlotte’s two point guards, combined for 16 rebounds as cheap nba basketball jerseys the Hornets outrebounded the Nets 49-37. Rebounding has been a major area of concern for coach Steve Clifford this season.

”We can’t give up 20 second-chance points, 18 second-chance points and win,” Clifford said. ”It’s something we’re going to have to do.”

FRANK THE TANK

Rookie Frank Kaminsky had a career-high 11 points on 4-of-6 shooting from the field. He saw more playing because starter Cody Zeller was having a particularly four outing. Zeller was held scoreless in 13 minutes of action.

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Nets: Lopez has scored 15 or more points 10 times wholesale jerseys this season along with five 20-point games. … Johnson had three 3-pointers but the Nets were just 5 of 15 from beyond the arc. … The Nets had a season-low nine turnovers.

Hornets: Walker’s three 3-point field goals were a season high. .. The Hornets were 27 of 36 from the foul line.

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Nets: Visit Boston on Friday night.

Hornets: Host Philadelphia on Friday night.Sports & RecreationBasketballNicolas BatumBrooklyn Nets JerseysCharlotte Hornets Jerseys

Bucks win despite Mayo’s wild ejection

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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Greg Monroe had 19 points and 10 rebounds to help the Milwaukee Bucks Jerseys overcome O.J. Mayo’s wild ejection in a 95-85 victory over wholesale jerseys the Minnesota Timberwolves Jerseys on Saturday night.

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John Henson scored 15 points for the Bucks, and Khris Middleton added 13. Mayo was forcibly removed from the court by coaches and security staff after he picked up two technical fouls in the first quarter.

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Ricky Rubio had 14 points, seven assists and six rebounds for the Timberwolves, who led 22-5 in cheap reversible basketball jerseys the first quarter. Andrew Wiggins added 19 points on 7-for-17 shooting.

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The Wolves shot just 39 percent, and their 16 turnovers led to 22 points for the Bucks.

Giannis Antetokounmpo had 11 points and nine rebounds, and Jerryd Bayless scored 13 for Milwaukee.

Karl-Anthony Towns had eight points and 10 rebounds for Minnesota but shot just 4 of 17. Zach LaVine went 3 for 9 and the Wolves were 3 of 14 on 3-pointers in falling to 5-13 at home.

Mayo picked up a technical foul from Pat Fraher after arguing for a foul call on a drive to the basket. As the game went to break, referee Jason Phillips gave Mayo another technical, which prompted the ejection. Mayo spun back toward the officiating crew wildly, and coaches Eric Hughes and Joe Prunty had to try to restrain him by yanking on his jersey.

Mayo made several more efforts to get back onto the court and finally was forced down the tunnel to the locker room by a security official. It was the latest outburst from Mayo, who got into a heated confrontation with Kings center DeMarcus Cousins in a back hallway this season.

Mayo’s exit did seem to wake up the Bucks cheap nba jerseys after a dreadful start to the game. They missed their first 11 shots, trailed by 17 only 9 minutes in and didn’t make a field goal until 3:18 remained in the first quarter, the longest drought to start a game since the New Orleans Hornets went 9:18 against Orlando in 2006.

But after cheap reversible basketball jerseys going 3 for 17 in the first quarter, the Bucks went 10 for 17 in the second to climb back into it.

They opened the fourth period with an 11-0 surge to take an 83-70 lead and never looked back.

TIP-INS

Bucks: Milwaukee shot 8 for 16 from 3-point range. … Minneapolis native Rashad Vaughn had five points in 16 minutes.

Timberwolves: The 8:42 that the Wolves kept the Bucks from making a field goal was the longest stretch to start a game since the franchise moved to its automated statistics system in 1996-97. … Wiggins entered shooting 18 percent from 3-point range over his previous 23 games. He went 0 for 3.

UP NEXT

Bucks: Host San Antonio on Monday.

Timberwolves: Visit Philadelphia on Monday.BasketballSports & RecreationMilwaukee Bucks JerseysMinnesota Timberwolves Jerseysthe BucksAndrew Wiggins

Suns beat Magic, end 17-game road skid

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ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Since their last road win, the Phoenix cheap jerseys Suns Jerseys have new coach and three new players in the starting lineup.

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Alex Len scored a career-high 31 points and grabbed 15 rebounds Friday night, and the Suns held the Orlando Magic Jerseys scoreless for a 7 1/2-minute stretch to snap a 17-game road losing streak, 102-84 Friday night.

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Devin Booker and Ronnie Price added 14 points each for Phoenix, which got its first road victory since Dec. 7 at Chicago. The streak tied a franchise record.
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”Everyone came in focused tonight, the level of concentration was high. Winning is winning,” Len said. ”We had 14 stops in a row. That got us going.”

Elfrid Payton had 19 pints and 11 assists for Orlando, which shot 35 percent against the NBA’s bottom-ranked team in defensive field-goal percentage.

”They were much more physical than us and we never did respond,” Magic coach Scott Skiles said. ”Tyson (Chandler), Len, (P.J.) Tucker, Price – those guys, from a physical standpoint, dominated us. It is very disappointing. It is a game we had to have.”

Mirza Teletovic hit two 3-pointers late in the first half to help the wholesale nba jerseys Suns take an eight-point lead, the largest of the half for either team.

When Phoenix scored the first nine points of the second half, Skiles replaced all five of his starters, but it didn’t help. Phoenix scored seven more points before Payton scored on a layup with 5:24 left in the third quarter, ending a stretch of 14 straight missed shots by Orlando.

By then the Suns had taken a 24-point lead.

”We locked in on every possession,” said Suns coach Earl Watson, who replaced Jeff Hornacek on Feb. 1. ”Tonight what you saw was a glimpse of what we envision being. This wholesale basketball jerseys was just one step.”

Rookie Mario Hezonja sparked a Magic rally with a long jumper and a couple of 3-pointers, but they could get no closer than 13. View gallery ORLANDO, FL – MARCH 4: Alex Len #21 of the Phoenix Suns Jerseys prepares to shoot a free throw against the O …

TIP-INS

Suns: Price played almost 45 minutes. … The Suns scored half of their 44 second-half points from the foul line. … The 7-foot-1 Len, who averages 8.4 points, scored in double figures for the seventh straight game.

Magic: G Victor Oladipo was out with a lower back contusion. The Magic are 1-4 without Oladipo this season. … Payton had 13 points and four assists in the first quarter, figuring in 22 of the team’s 29 points. . . . The Magic have lost three straight to the Suns, including both meetings this season.

COULD BE WORSE

The Suns have won only twice under Watson but he put it wholesale basketball jerseys in perspective: ”I was in the D League last year taking six-hour bus rides. This is a different deal for me; I’m excited to fly on a plane again from city to city.”

UP NEXT

Suns: At Memphis on Sunday.

Magic: At Golden State on Monday.Sports & RecreationBasketballPhoenix Suns JerseysOrlando Magic JerseysRonnie Price

At 27, Durant becoming 1 of the ‘old’ guys in NBA

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Oklahoma City star Kevin Durant plays the Minnesota Timberwolves Jerseys three times in January, giving him three opportunities to meet up with Kevin Garnett, one of Durant’s idols when he was growing up in the Washington, D.C. area.

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Durant has often spoke about how he looked up to Garnett as a kid and tried to pattern some of his game after the revolutionary power forward who made the jump straight from high school to the pros cheap nba jersey in 1995.

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Now at the ripe old age of 27, Durant is becoming one of those players that a new generation of NBA players grew up aspiring to be. Karl-Anthony Towns, the No. 1 overall draft pick by the Timberwolves, once interviewed Durant as a teenager in high school in New Jersey.

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”I’ve got a few guys I’ve been on since they were younger and they’re starting to get to college now and I look at their date of birth and it’s ’98, ’97,” Durant said this week, shaking his head. ”I’m like holy (cow), I’m almost 10 years older than these guys.”

It wasn’t that long ago that Durant and Russell Westbrook were the new kids on the block and appeared to be positioning the Thunder as the successor to San Antonio in the Western Conference. But injuries to Durant, Westbrook and Serge Ibaka, and an ill-fated trade of James Harden, have prevented the Thunder from a return trip to the NBA Finals after their first appearance in 2012.

Durant has returned with a vengeance this season wholesale jerseys, averaging 26.5 points, 7.7 rebounds and 4.4 assists while shooting 51.7 percent from the field, 40.4 percent on 3-pointers and 89.5 percent on free throws. The Thunder are 30-12 and seeded third in the West, and Durant thinks he has so much more left to give.

”I’m getting older but at the same time I feel like I’m still young, I’m still learning, I’m still trying to figure out who I am as a basketball player,” Durant said. ”And that’s the great part about it. I think that’s what I learned from guys like KG. He’s always striving to be better. This may be his last few years, but he’s not packing it in. That’s what I can learn.”

SINKING SUNS

The Phoenix Suns Jerseys have been a mess all season, and they may have reached rock bottom on a three-game trip last week. A 19-point loss at Indiana and a 14-point loss at Boston preceded a 30-point drubbing in Minnesota, where the Timberwolves had lost 13 cheap nba jersey of their previous 14 games and nine in a row. The skid dropped the Suns (13-29) into a tie with the Wolves for the fourth-worst record in the NBA and is the worst record at the halfway point for the Suns since their inaugural season in 1968-69.

”Effort should never be called into question,” guard Brandon Knight said. ”For myself and the rest of the guys and our younger guys, everybody has to do a better job of just making sure we’re ready to play every game.”

Things to watch this week:

MLK DAY: Martin Luther King Jr. Day is on Monday, a day the NBA has always embraced and celebrated. Ten games are scheduled, including an NBA Finals rematch with the Warriors visiting Cleveland and a night cap featuring the Rockets at the Clippers.

PARKER IS BACK: Spurs point guard Tony Parker wasn’t himself last year due in large part to a hamstring injury, and the Spurs were bounced in the first round of the playoffs in part because of that. Gregg Popovich says he is running the team as well as he ever has. And the Spurs (36-6) suddenly are just a half-game behind Golden State in the West.

SURGING SIXERS: The team that started the season 0-18 and 1-30 has won four times is 4-7 in its last 11 games. Jerry Colangelo for executive of the year!

GOBERT’S RETURN: The Utah Jazz Jerseys were 11th in the league in points allowed per 100 possessions (99.8) with Rudy Gobert anchoring the defense for the first month. In the 18 games he missed, they dropped to 23rd. Since the Stifle Tower’s return, they are giving up 98.1, sixth in the league.

STAT LINE OF THE WEEK: Jimmy Butler, Bulls: 53 points, 10 rebounds six assists in 49 minutes against the Sixers. The Bulls needed almost every one of those points to squeak out a four-point win against suddenly feisty Philly.

Follow Jon Krawczynski on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/APKrawczynskiBasketballSports & RecreationKevin DurantMinnesota Timberwolves JerseysKevin GarnettNBANBA Finals

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