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Neither Duke nor UNC are ranked in basketball's Top 25. That hasn’t happened since 1982.

Sports / Basketball /

For the first time since December 1982, The Associated Press men’s basketball poll doesn’t include Duke or North Carolina.

The blue-blooded rivals, famously located eight miles a part with 11 NCAA tournament championships between them, are struggling simultaneously, with North Carolina having started this season 8-5 while Duke is 5-3.

The ...Read more

Lakers manage to show some of their championship mettle in 115-113 loss to Warriors

Sports / Basketball /

LOS ANGELES — Steve Kerr recognizes this.

The Warriors coach saw it in Chicago, where he stepped into huge jump shots alongside Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen and again in San Antonio when Tim Duncan and David Robinson patrolled the frontcourt for the Spurs. Kerr was once again a witness in Golden State, where he ran things from the ...Read more

Heat digs out of early 19-point hole for much-needed win against league-worst Pistons

Sports / Basketball /

Two days after losing by 20 points to the worst team in the NBA, the Miami Heat was down 19 again to the Detroit Pistons in the first quarter Monday. One of the most trying weeks in franchise history — with COVID-19 concerns gripping the organization, postponing multiple games and leaving the Heat significantly shorthanded for three straight ...Read more

Al Bello/Getty Images North America/TNS

Nets top Bucks in high-scoring thriller

Sports / Basketball /

Nets head coach Steve Nash sees both sides like Chanel.

On one side, not only is it just the 13th game of the season, but his team is without Kyrie Irving (health and safety protocols) and still has to fill three roster spots. So while a game against Giannis Antetokounmpo’s Milwaukee Bucks — a team challenging for an NBA title just like ...Read more

Short-handed Chicago Bulls win their 2nd straight game, beating the Houston Rockets 125-120 behind Zach LaVine's 33 points

Sports / Basketball /

When the Chicago Bulls offense has been at its best this season, it has benefited from strong ball movement to keep everyone involved.

Even though Zach LaVine led the way Monday night with 33 points, he also dished out seven assists to help lead the Bulls to a 125-120 victory over the Houston Rockets at the United Center. The Bulls were short-...Read more

Kansas loses back-to-back Big 12 games as No. 2 Baylor pulls away on Big Monday

Sports / Basketball /

Undefeated No. 2-ranked Baylor continued its spectacular start to the 2020-21 men’s basketball season by downing No. 9-ranked Kansas 77-69 on Monday night at Ferrell Center, in Waco, Texas.

Jared Butler scored 30 points, MaCio Teague added 13 and Davion Mitchell 10 as the Bears (13-0, 6-0 Big 12), who raced to an 11-point lead just 5 1/2 ...Read more

No. 7 Michigan regroups, turns attention to Maryland after humbling first defeat

Sports / Basketball /

Throughout the early portion of the Big Ten slate, Michigan was the one beating up opponents and delivering decisive knockout blows.

For the first time, the Wolverines were on the receiving end of one of those haymakers in Saturday’s humbling 18-point defeat at Minnesota, where they trailed by as much as 23 points.

And now for the first time...Read more

Could a Warriors-Lakers rivalry finally begin this season?

Sports / Basketball /

Over the last 20 years, the Warriors and Lakers are responsible for nine NBA championships. Yet, somehow, a true rivalry has never formed between these two in-state neighbors.

The reason is simple: The two historic franchises have never been good at the same time.

While Kobe Bryant and other stars such as Shaquille O’Neal and Pau Gasol led ...Read more

Al Bello/Getty Images North America/TNS

Kyrie Irving bought George Floyd's family a house

Sports / Basketball /

Kyrie Irving bought a home for the family of the late George Floyd, former NBA player Stephen Jackson said on a podcast.

The mercurial Nets point guard made the purchase shortly after Floyd was killed by police in Minnesota last year, according to an ESPN report.

Irving has been particularly focused on social and political issues over the past...Read more

Hawks overcome turnovers to get much-needed win vs. Timberwolves

Sports / Basketball /

Sporting their City Edition jerseys on MLK Day, the Hawks (6-7), who had lost six of their last seven games, got a much-needed win against the Timberwolves, 108-97.

Next up, the Hawks host the Pistons Wednesday night.

Below are some takeaways from the win:

1. Turnovers kept Minnesota (3-9) in the game for far longer than the Hawks would have ...Read more

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St. John's wears down UConn men, wins Big East reunion, 74-70

Sports / Basketball /

St. John’s was everything UConn coach Dan Hurley feared it would be. Rugged, relentless, willful on defense.

And after withstanding the Huskies’ torrid start, St. John’s gradually imposed its will. Though the Huskies had a multiple chances to escape, but couldn’t make the big free throw, or shot down the stretch and fell, 78-74, in the ...Read more

On MLK Day, Heat's Iguodala reflects on a year of activism and what’s next for the NBA

Sports / Basketball /

There were moments of regret throughout the last year for NBA players. There was often progress in the social justice initiatives the Miami Heat and others championed, and progress was always met eventually by the harsh realities of a world too slow to change.

When police killed George Floyd in the spring, Kyrie Irving pleaded with his fellow ...Read more

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Illinois' Big Ten basketball game against Michigan State is postponed because of COVID-19 cases within the Spartans program

Sports / Basketball /

A second game in 10 days has been wiped from Illinois’ Big Ten basketball schedule after Michigan State announced Saturday’s game will be postponed because of COVID-19 cases in the Spartans program.

Spartans coach Tom Izzo told reporters three more positive tests emerged Sunday within the program, including freshman walk-on Davis Smith.

...Read more

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Julius Randle, RJ Barrett propel Knicks over Magic on MLK Day

Sports / Basketball /

It was about as crisp as wet toilet paper and as stylish as bowling shoes, but the Knicks will take the victory.

Clutch layups by Julius Randle and RJ Barrett in the final minute, along with a series of mishaps from Aaron Gordon, secured the Knicks’ victory over the Magic at the Garden on MLK Day, 91-84.

Randle personified the slopfest for ...Read more

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John Clay: As UK basketball struggles, has John Calipari lost his magic touch?

Sports / Basketball /

It used to be a given.

No matter the year or the circumstances or what was going on in the world around him, you could count on John Calipari to round up the best talent he could find, check egos at the door, stir the melting pot and figure out the magic formula that gave Kentucky basketball its best chance at a successful season.

This year, ...Read more

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Kawhi Leonard reminds former coach what he's all about in Clippers' 129-96 win over Pacers

Sports / Basketball /

LOS ANGELES — Two years ago, while the Los Angeles Clippers and other suitors were tracking would-be free agent Kawhi Leonard from afar, trying to understand what the All-Star forward wanted, and what made him tick, Nate Bjorkgren spent nearly 11 months receiving a firsthand education.

An assistant on Nick Nurse’s Toronto staff for Leonard�...Read more

Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Kawhi Leonard reminds former coach what he's all about in Clippers' 129-96 win over Pacers

Sports / Basketball /

LOS ANGELES — Two years ago, while the Los Angeles Clippers and other suitors were tracking would-be free agent Kawhi Leonard from afar, trying to understand what the All-Star forward wanted, and what made him tick, Nate Bjorkgren spent nearly 11 months receiving a firsthand education.

An assistant on Nick Nurse’s Toronto staff for Leonard�...Read more

Willie J. Allen Jr./Orlando Sentinel/TNS

Magic still shaking off Markelle Fultz injury, trying to find groove amid five-game skid

Sports / Basketball /

The Orlando Magic remain in an adjustment period.

Magic coach Steven Clifford said his team is still reeling from the loss of point guard Markelle Fultz to a knee injury and the recalibration process has not been particularly smooth.

So following four consecutive lopsided losses, Clifford began looking for signs his team is on the verge of ...Read more

De'Aaron Fox erupts for career-high 43 points, but Kings can’t stop Zion Williamson

Sports / Basketball /

De’Aaron Fox left it all on the floor in one of the finest performances of his professional career, but even that wasn’t enough for the struggling Kings.

Fox had a career-high 43 points and 13 assists, but Zion Williamson walked away victorious after the New Orleans Pelicans held on for a 128-123 win over the Kings on Sunday night at Golden...Read more

Rod Beard: Pistons' veterans setting standard for eager upstarts to follow

Sports / Basketball /

Lottery picks often have a way of changing a team’s fortunes quickly.

It wasn’t so long ago that Giannis Antetokounmpo set the league on fire as a rookie in 2013 as a starter in the Milwaukee Bucks resurgence. Seeing Jamal Murray immediately push the Denver Nuggets to success in 2016 also is a recent memory.

Except those things didn’t ...Read more