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Warriors thump Mavericks in convincing Game 1

Sports / Basketball /

SAN FRANCISCO – After the Mavericks made a statement in a dominant Game 7 win over the Suns on Sunday, Dallas coach and Bay Area basketball legend Jason Kidd said the team wasn’t sweating the task of going toe-to-toe with an experienced team in the Warriors, who have advanced to the Western Conference finals in six of the last eight seasons....Read more

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Celtics' Smart upgraded to probable, with Heat's Lowry still out, as pandemic, protocols remain series factors

Sports / Basketball /

MIAMI — The specter COVID and illness continues to be a factor in the Eastern Conference finals series between the Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics.

A day after the Celtics big man Al Horford entered the NBA’s heath-and-safety protocols, Boston coach Ime Udoka was unavailable for his team’s Wednesday media session due to what the Celtics...Read more

John McCall/Sun Sentinel/TNS

P.J. Tucker perseveres as vital Heat organ, embraced again as 'the heartbeat of our team'

Sports / Basketball /

For four days before the start of these Eastern Conference finals, left with little else to discuss during yet another extended postseason break, coach Erik Spoelstra and his Miami Heat players spoke of the impending need to make the hustle plays, be first to the ball, impose will, take care of the small stuff in the margins.

Basically, all the...Read more

Roderick Boone: The Hornets have 2 first-round draft picks and need to trade both of them. Here's why.

Sports / Basketball /

When the card with their logo got pulled out of the envelope by NBA deputy commissioner Mark Tatum, revealing the Charlotte Hornets failed to jump up in the draft lottery Tuesday night, it surely didn’t incite many smiles.

Certainly not from PJ Washington, who would’ve gladly flashed a toothy pose on the dais in Chicago if they somehow rose...Read more

John McCall/South Florida Sun-Sentinel/TNS

Celtics go back to the video room after Game 1 collapse

Sports / Basketball /

MIAMI — In the wake of Tuesday night’s Game 1 loss, they sounded like a football team.

Whether it was Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown or the coach, Ime Udoka, they all had to look at the “film.”

A day later after getting together at the team hotel, the damage was fairly self-explanatory — the wrong end of a 39-14 third quarter, including ...Read more

Bob Wojnowski: Pistons fall from top three, but could land a Big Ten star

Sports / Basketball /

The bad news for the Pistons is, they fell out of the NBA Draft’s top three. Good news is, they won’t have to engage in the loud, rancorous debate over which super-hyped players should go one, two, or three.

With one flip of the lottery card Tuesday night, the Pistons’ focus shifted, and so will the argument. Landing at No. 5 wasn’t ...Read more

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Joey Baker, Duke basketball captain and reserve forward, enters transfer portal

Sports / Basketball /

CHICAGO — Joey Baker’s Duke basketball career, which began earlier than planned, included his redshirt being burned late in his freshman season and saw him as a team captain last season, is coming to an end.

The 6-6 reserve forward from Fayetteville, N.C., is entering his name in the transfer portal so that, after he completes work toward ...Read more

John McCall/South Florida Sun-Sentinel/TNS

Dave Hyde: Heat's Jimmy Butler keeps telling you who he is -- and it's more than the 41 points in Game 1 win

Sports / Basketball /

Every so often, just for a moment, Jimmy Butler will let you in. He’ll pull back the curtain and let you see who he is, how his mind and motivations assemble.

He mostly keeps that area closed off, opaquely answering he doesn’t care about random ideas like statistics, as he says night after playoff night.

Even if the question is framed that...Read more

Jason Kidd gets his playoff shot against hometown Warriors -- as Dallas coach

Sports / Basketball /

SAN FRANCISCO – Jason Kidd is back in town, and it’s not for a 30-year reunion of St. Joseph High’s Class of 1992 in Alameda.

He is here to coach the Dallas Mavericks past the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals, which begin tonight at Chase Center.

“It’s always good to come home,” Kidd said Tuesday. “A lot of great things ...Read more

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Amar'e Stoudemire clarifies comments on Kyrie Irving and leaving Nets

Sports / Basketball /

NEW YORK — Former Nets assistant Amar’e Stoudemire suggested there’s no bad blood between him, the Nets or Kyrie Irving, and that the media took his words in an appearance on ESPN’s First Take out of context.

Stoudemire, who broke the news of his departure from Steve Nash’s coaching staff in a May 12 nationally-televised conversation ...Read more

Steph Chambers/Getty Images North America/TNS

Inside the Magic's luck that landed Orlando No. 1 pick in NBA draft

Sports / Basketball /

CHICAGO — A few hours before their franchise-altering night, the Orlando Magic made a rare change.

Jeff Weltman, president of basketball operations, was scheduled to be the Magic’s on-stage representative at Tuesday’s NBA draft lottery.

Before it started, however, coach Jamahl Mosley told Weltman he was “feeling a little lucky” and ...Read more

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Bill Plaschke: Sparks' new season, and Derek Fisher's job security, off to a shaky start

Sports / Basketball /

LOS ANGELES — The smattering of fans are standing, shrieking, bouncing, transforming the lower bowl of Crypto.com Arena into a downtown block party.

Dancers hop across a stage behind one basket. Sparky the Dog leads cheers from midcourt. Lisa Leslie waves from courtside. The relentless DJ Mal-Ski fills every quiet moment with chants and ...Read more

YONG KIM/The Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS

Marcus Hayes: Sixers, as they are now, can be good enough to win a title

Sports / Basketball /

PHILADELPHIA — Disappointment and outrage grip Sixers nation this week. Understandable.

But there is hope.

What if the Sixers get ... better? They can.

Every shortcoming the team displayed in its 12-game playoff run can improve. Every single one. They might lack championship DNA — there’s no analytic for heart — but they certainly ...Read more

Michael Reaves/Getty Images North America/TNS

Heat rides dominant third quarter to beat Boston, take 1-0 lead in Eastern Finals

Sports / Basketball /

MIAMI — Miami entered these Eastern Conference Finals in the unusual predicament of being both a No. 1 seed and a clear underdog in the series, according to Las Vegas oddsmakers.

On Tuesday night, the Heat showed everybody what it can do with those odds.

Buoyed by a 22-2 stampede to start the third quarter, the Heat reversed momentum ...Read more

Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images North America/TNS

Stefan Bondy: Luck not on Knicks' side -- again -- as they fail to move up in NBA draft lottery, will pick 11th

Sports / Basketball /

NEW YORK — Lottery luck still alludes the Knicks.

The franchise will pick 11th, the spot they were slotted before Tuesday’s draft lottery drawing, failing to move up for a depressing 18th consecutive time in the lottery. It’s a streak that started after the Knicks won the Patrick Ewing sweepstakes in 1985.

The Orlando Magic won the ...Read more

Michael Chang/Getty Images North America/TNS

John Clay: If done, Kentucky basketball's 2022-23 roster looks promising, with one question

Sports / Basketball /

The Kentucky basketball roster for 2022-23 is pretty much set. John Calipari said so a couple of weeks ago when appearing on a Louisville radio show. The UK coach said he expected to have 10 scholarship players for next season. No more than 11.

Though currently testing the NBA Draft waters, Jacob Toppin is expected to return. Keion Brooks said ...Read more

Manuela Davies/Getty Images North America/TNS

Orlando Magic win NBA draft lottery, come away with No. 1 pick

Sports / Basketball /

CHICAGO — The NBA draft lottery misfortune that’s surrounded the Orlando Magic for nearly 20 years has ended.

The Magic won Tuesday night’s draft lottery in Chicago, coming away with the No. 1 pick for the first time 2004.

After early success with the lottery, the Magic had either stayed at or fallen from their pre-lottery positioning in...Read more

Source: Kings owner Vivek Ranadive's daughter Anjali named assistant GM of G League Stockton Kings

Sports / Basketball /

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Anjali Ranadive, the daughter of Sacramento Kings owner Vivek Ranadive, is joining the basketball side of the family business.

Anjali Ranadive is moving into a front office role as assistant general manager of the G League Stockton Kings, league sources told The Sacramento Bee on Tuesday, confirming a report from FOX40’...Read more

Maddie Meyer/Getty Images North America/TNS

Celtics without Marcus Smart, Al Horford for East finals Game 1 vs. Heat, joining Miami's Lowry as out

Sports / Basketball /

MIAMI — A potentially seismic shift hit the Eastern Conference finals less than three hours prior to Tuesday night’s start of Game 1 at FTX Arena, when the Boston Celtics announced that forward Al Horford had entered NBA health and safety protocols and would be out for the series opener against the Miami Heat.

The designation not only had ...Read more

JOSE CARLOS FAJARDO/Bay Area News Group/TNS

Dieter Kurtenbach: How COVID could determine the NBA title -- 'you pray that it does not influence the way the season ends'

Sports / Basketball /

As Warriors coach Steve Kerr was driving to work ahead of Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals series, his focus wasn’t on the Memphis Grizzlies, but rather on his cough, his congestion, and the cases of COVID-19 that had popped up at the team’s San Francisco facility.

As cases of COVID waned around the country, the NBA made testing ...Read more