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Timberwolves open with 107-99 loss to Spurs

Sports / Basketball /

SAN ANTONIO -- Timberwolves three-time All Star Jimmy Butler predicted Wednesday's season opener at San Antonio might not be pretty, but it might begin to reveal his team's nature.

He's 2-0 in predictions while the Wolves are now 0-1 in the standings after a 107-99 loss to the Spurs at AT&T Center.

Before Wednesday's game, Butler wasn't ...Read more

Lonzo Ball's learning curve starts by playing against defensive star Patrick Beverley

Sports / Basketball /

LOS ANGELES -- The young man at the center of all the commotion smiled calmly on Wednesday, the day before the first meaningful game of his NBA career.

Lonzo Ball is rarely any other way.

"It is going to be a lot of fun," Ball said.

On Thursday night the Los Angeles Lakers will host the Los Angeles Clippers in the season opener for both teams...Read more

Sixers stay close but fall to Wizards, 120-115

Sports / Basketball /

WASHINGTON -- 76ers coach Brett Brown thinks it's unintelligent to make a judgment on his squad after one game.

He thinks folks will get a better sense of his squad after the first third of the season. Perhaps we will learn more then.

The Sixers looked a like a team worthy of all the offseason hype before ultimately falling, 120-115, to the ...Read more

Tobias Harris leads opening-night celebration in Pistons' 102-90 win vs. Hornets

Sports / Basketball /

DETROIT -- Reggie Jackson, who struggled last season with a sore left knee, was solid.

Avery Bradley, the offseason acquisition, was as good as advertised.

But it was Tobias Harris that made the Detroit Pistons' first regular-season game at Little Caesars Arena a rousing success.

Harris scored 19 of his game-high 27 points in the first half, ...Read more

Clippers are healthy, but coach Doc Rivers still curious about his team

Sports / Basketball /

LOS ANGELES -- On Tuesday and Wednesday, the Los Angeles Clippers were finally intact for practice after an injury-ravaged training camp.

On Thursday, the Clippers will take their healed group to Staples Center to play the Los Angeles Lakers in the season opener for both teams.

No one is more curious to see what this team has than Clippers ...Read more

Bulls rookie Lauri Markkanen will start Thursday vs. Raptors

Sports / Basketball /

CHICAGO -- Ready or not, here comes Lauri Markkanen.

In the first year of a full rebuild, the Bulls projected the first-round pick to play an important role. But nobody expected the Finnish forward to start Thursday's season opener in Toronto, as coach Fred Hoiberg announced Wednesday, a day after the altercation in practice that left Nikola ...Read more

Haslem has seen his share of Heat practice altercations, but nothing like in Chicago

Sports / Basketball /

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Udonis Haslem has been around for a few "misunderstandings" between teammates in his 15 years with the Heat.

But he's never seen anything like what happened Tuesday in Chicago when Bobby Portis (6-11, 230) sent Nikola Mirotic (6-10, 220) to the hospital with two broken bones in his face and a concussion after a vicious punch ...Read more

Spoelstra: Heat coaching staff went silent when Hayward went down

Sports / Basketball /

ORLANDO, Fla. -- It was a celebration of the start of the NBA season that Erik Spoelstra was spending with his Miami Heat coaching staff. And then it became anything but a festive evening.

Though Spoelstra never got his chance to coach Gordon Hayward, he was part of the Heat's all-out push for the versatile All-Star forward in free agency. And ...Read more

Sixers' coach Brown mum on a definite minutes restriction for Embiid

Sports / Basketball /

WASHINGTON -- It appears that 76ers coach Brett Brown may be weary of answering minutes restriction questions in regards to Joel Embiid.

Either that or Brown is giving himself a little wiggle room for Wednesday night's season-opener against the Washington Wizards at Capital One Arena.

"There's a range that we are going to figure out," said ...Read more

Bulls' Portis suspended 8 games for punching teammate Mirotic

Sports / Basketball /

CHICAGO -- Bobby Portis has been suspended eight games for punching Nikola Mirotic in the face at practice on Tuesday, the Bulls announced Wednesday.

The suspension begins with Thursday's season opener at Toronto. Portis will practice with the team during his suspension.

Mirotic suffered a concussion and what the team called "maxillary ...Read more

As Giannis Antetokounmpo goes, so do the Bucks

Sports / Basketball /

Giannis Antetokounmpo officially arrived as a star in the NBA sky last season.

He established himself as one of the top players in the league, led the Milwaukee Bucks in every major statistical category and became both an All-Star and the league's most improved player in his fourth season.

At just 22 years old, Antetokounmpo has become the ...Read more

Dwight Howard is still a big kid at heart, with a big vision for the Hornets

Sports / Basketball /

If you want to make Dwight Howard glow, put him amidst kids -- pretty much any kids anywhere.

Howard, the Hornets' new starting center, has adopted Charlotte's Starmount Academy, an elementary school. Howard is contributing $100,000 to the operation of a Boys and Girls Club there, and this is about more than writing a check and doing a photo-op...Read more

Lopez hopes to create winning atmosphere with Lakers

Sports / Basketball /

LOS ANGELES--Twin brothers Brook and Robin Lopez were always up to something, even when they were 5 years old in the back seat of their mom's car on the way to their older brothers' basketball games.

They created their own little world, drawing pictures or plotting stories they invented with fictional characters from their vibrant imaginations....Read more

New-look Clippers at a crossroads to see if they are still a top team in West

Sports / Basketball /

LOS ANGELES--For six years, the Los Angeles Clippers stood among the best of the NBA, a team listed in the company of the championship contenders despite their constant playoff failures.

They are no longer seen in the same light.

As the Clippers prepare to launch their 2017-18 season, they now are regarded as a team at the crossroads.

No one ...Read more

LeBron James leads Cavs to season-opening victory in Kyrie Irving's return to Cleveland

Sports / Basketball /

CLEVELAND -- LeBron James did LeBron James things Tuesday night at Quicken Loans Arena to overshadow Kyrie Irving's return to Cleveland.

James, who missed all but one preseason game with an ankle injury, dazzled fans with his usual assortment of skills and led the Cavaliers to a 102-99 victory over the Boston Celtics in the season opener for ...Read more

Celtics' Kyrie Irving stays quiet about reasons for trade

Sports / Basketball /

CLEVELAND -- Former Cavaliers teammates and fans who want Kyrie Irving to reveal the real reasons he wanted to leave Cleveland might forever remain unsatisfied.

Because, according to Irving, "that's not what real grown-ups do."

As the four-time All-Star guard returned to Quicken Loans Arena with the Boston Celtics for Tuesday night's season ...Read more

Sixers' Embiid unhappy with minutes restriction

Sports / Basketball /

Joel Embiid is not afraid to share how he feels.

Using a string of expletives, the 76ers center voiced his displeasure with the coaching and medical staffs' decision to keep him on a minutes restriction.

"I always think I have a voice, and that they're listening to what I have to say, too. They're making the decision based on what they think, ...Read more

Bulls' Nikola Mirotic out indefinitely after altercation with teammate Bobby Portis

Sports / Basketball /

Starting power forward Nikola Mirotic will miss Thursday's season opener and be sidelined indefinitely after getting punched in the face by Bobby Portis during a practice altercation, a source said.

One source said Mirotic suffered two broken bones in his face and was evaluated for a concussion at the hospital. He has since been released.

The ...Read more

Sixers embark on era of their Big Three

Sports / Basketball /

You look at the 76ers' version of "The Big Three."

There's Joel Embiid, the towering best player on the team, and perhaps the most intriguing player in the NBA.

Then there's a confident costar in Ben Simmons, who just might reinvent the point guard position.

And there's multitalented youngster Markelle Fultz. While his time with the Sixers ...Read more

Sixers' Dario Saric is tirelessly improving his game

Sports / Basketball /

Sixers coach Brett Brown said it was a fight getting Dario Saric to sit out the first two preseason games.

"He hates it. He can't stand it," Brown said of Saric's reaction to forced rest. "He doesn't want to let people down, and he wants to fight through things."

Saric loves playing basketball. His attitude toward not wanting to take a break ...Read more