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Cats in the NBA

Former Kentucky Players in the NBA

Devin Booker is ready to be the face of the Suns

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Devin Booker has made quite a name for himself in the NBA this season and continues to do so.

Moving forward, it’s obvious that Booker is a large part of the Suns future and he’s ready for it, according to Craig Grialou of ArizonaSports.com.

“I grew up being fans of all guys that were faces of franchises. The Kobe Bryants. The Dwyane Wades. Michael Jordan. I always grew up wanting to be like those guys. I know what comes with it: putting a lot of time in the gym and winning, so I know we have to win. That’s my goal,” he said, adding about the responsibility of such a distinction, “Obviously you have to know how to speak. Carry yourself in the community. Be a role model. Be involved in the community. Those are all things I feel like I do naturally.

“It’s a big statement to say ‘be a face of a franchise’ and it comes with a lot of responsibility, but I feel I’m built for it.”

He’s one of just six in NBA history to score 70+ in a game, one of four to lead their team in scoring twice before turning 21 and his getting praise from some of the league’s biggest names in coaching.

“Golden State’s Steve Kerr called Booker the “centerpiece” for the Suns future.

Dallas’ Rick Carlisle, prior to their meeting against the Suns on April 9, offered up this anecdote.

“Last summer in Las Vegas, I was out there a few times with (Harrison) Barnes with the USA team,” he said, “and one of the gyms we were working out at I saw Booker. He was in there every night for hours just working on stuff, working on stuff, working on stuff. He’s a guy that’s wired to try to be great, there’s no doubt in my mind, and he’s on his way.”

Booker would be a junior at UK this year, the same year as me. He’s making stacks while I’m writing about it. I’ll let you decide who’s winning.


Calipari says NBA teams that passed on Tyler Ulis are eating crow

Tyler Ulis has been proving people wrong his entire life, and after his successful rookie season, John Calipari couldn’t help but serve some crow to those who doubted Ulis could make it at the next level. In an interview with Arizona Sports 98.7 FM this morning, Calipari said he reminded the teams that passed on Ulis what they’re missing out on. 

“I talked to three or four teams, like, ‘You understand what you did by passing on Ulis?,’” Calipari said. “(And they said) ‘I knew I was getting this call, you were right.’ So I think Phoenix, with Tyler Ulis, I mean come on now. This kid’s heart, this kid’s ability to do what he does, it’s amazing.”

Their loss is the Phoenix Suns’ gain. The Suns got one of the steals of the draft by taking Ulis with the 34th pick. In a guard-heavy lineup, Ulis averaged 7.3 points and 3.7 assists in 18.4 minutes per game this season. When the Suns decided to rest Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight late in the season, Ulis started and led all rookies in scoring in the month of April with 20.7 points and 6.8 assists per game. That performance was good enough to earn Ulis Western Conference Rookie of the Month, and is further proof that Suns GM Ryan McDonough made the right choice in taking a chance on him, one year after he made Devin Booker a lottery pick.

“Devin Booker coming out there, he was the youngest player in the draft, did not start for Kentucky,” Calipari said. “And Ryan made him a lottery pick? What the hell are we doing? What is that? And then when he takes a 5-foot-6 player that’s 150 pounds, everybody’s like, ‘Are you kidding me? Why would we do that?’ So I don’t know exactly what they’re looking at or what they need or what draft picks they have, but they’ll do their homework. I have a lot of faith in that.”

Listen to the audio of the interview here, or enjoy Ulis’ rookie highlights below:

 


Rajon Rondo out indefinitely with fractured thumb

Rajon Rondo out indefinitely with fractured thumb

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Well, here’s some news I didn’t expect to see this morning. The Chicago Bulls just announced that Rajon Rondo is out indefinitely with a thumb fracture. The injury won’t require surgery, but comes in the middle of the Bulls’ first round series vs. the Boston Celtics, game three of which will take place tonight at 7 p.m.

Rondo suffered the injury during game two of the series on Tuesday night, but you wouldn’t have known it judging by his performance. Rondo had 14 assists in Chicago’s 111-97 win over Boston, looking like the Rondo of old:

Get well soon.


BBNBA: Harrison and the Grizzlies steal one from the Spurs

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Another night of three games in the NBA Playoffs, and another two former Kentucky Wildcats took the floor for their respective teams. Andrew Harrison and the Memphis Grizzlies managed to take a game at home against the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference, the San Antonio Spurs. In the East, Patrick Patterson and the Raptors stood essentially no chance from the beginning of the game against the Milwaukee Bucks. The Raptors were down 20 after the first quarter, while only scoring 12 points, and the Bucks never looked back.

Here’s how the two former Cats looked on the stat sheet. Spoiler alert: There’s nothing too impressive from last night.

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Andrew Harrison, Memphis Grizzlies (105-94 win over Spurs)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 25  1-6  1-3  2-2  1  1  2  6  1  0  1  3  +2  5

A triple from deep for Harrison’s only field goal of the night.

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Patrick Patterson, Toronto Raptors (104-77 loss to Bucks)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 23  1-5 1-2  0-0  0 2  2  1  1  0  0  1  -21  3

Not much going for Patterson or any of the Raptors last night, as they only had 46 points at the end of the third quarter. Patterson has fallen in a bit of a funk lately and his production has diminished. In fact, Patterson has only scored in double figures four times in the last month’s worth of games. Hopefully, for both his sake and the team’s sake, PPat can find his rhythm and the Raptors can even up the series in their next game.


Tonight’s NBA Playoff action gives us three games and three chances to watch a total of four former Cats try to extend their season.

  • Boston Celtics (James Young) at Chicago Bulls (Rajon Rondo), 7pm ET on ESPN
    • Chicago Bulls lead the series 2-0
  • Houston Rockets at Oklahoma City Thunder (Enes Kanter), 9:30pm ET on ESPN
    • Houston Rockets lead the series 2-0
  • Los Angeles Clippers at Utah Jazz (Trey Lyles), 10pm ET, on ESPN2
    • Series tied at 1-1

@BrettBibbinsKSR


Rex Chapman named one of the “Unsung Heroes in NBA Playoff History”

It’s Throwback Thursday, which makes this piece I’m about to share especially appropriate. To celebrate round one of the NBA Playoffs, Yardbarker released their list of the “25 Unsung Heroes in NBA Playoff History,” and among them is Rex Chapman. Take it away, Yardbarker!

“It still doesn’t seem real. In the Game 4 of first round of the 1997 NBA playoffs, Phoenix Suns guard Rex Chapman made an impossible-looking one-footed three-pointer against the Seattle SuperSonics that sent the game to overtime. Chapman finished the game with 22 points, five rebounds and four assists.”

Don’t remember that shot? YouTube does:

This came only a few games after Rex scored 42 points off 9 threes:

See, kids, that guy who sings on the pregame show was actually a pretty good basketball player back in the day.


BBNBA: John Wall and the Wizards go up 2-0

bbnba-playoffs

Last night in the NBA featured three playoff games, with former Kentucky Wildcats suiting up in two of those three games. John Wall and the Wizards took on the Hawks in game two of their series, while Enes Kanter and the Oklahoma City Russell Westbrook’s went to battle against the Rockets. Here’s a look at how the two former Cats played last night.

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John Wall, Washington Wizards (109-101 win over Hawks)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 39  9-20  2-2  12-15  0  5  5  9  1  1  4  2  -2  32

Can I just say one thing? I really love watching John Wall abuse Dennis Schröder all game long. So amusing to me.

Specifically this play. That stare down is lethal. Schröder tries to yell at Dwight Howard after Schröder committed a turnover and then got dunked on….makes sense.

That stare-down though 😳

A post shared by SportsCenter (@sportscenter) on

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Enes Kanter, Oklahoma City Thunder (115-111 loss to Rockets)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 8  2-4 0-0  0-0  1  0  1  0  0  3  0  2  -9  4

The Houston Rockets have picked on Enes Kanter’s inability to guard James Harden when switched after a screen. They went right at him almost every possession he was in game 1. Billy Donovan was caught on camera telling an assistant coach that they couldn’t play Kanter any longer. As you can see in game 2, Donovan wasn’t lying. Decrease in minutes and production from the big fella. Hopefully we see that change going forward.


Two more former Kentucky guys will be playing in tonight’s playoff games:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers at Indiana Pacers, 7pm ET on TNT
  • Toronto Raptors (Patrick Patterson) at Milwaukee Bucks, 8pm ET on NBATV
  • San Antonio Spurs at Memphis Grizzlies (Andrew Harrison), 9:30pm ET on TNT

@BrettBibbinsKSR


John Wall is Still Searching for a Shoe Company while Running Through the Playoffs

Wall's new D.C. mural is in a famous location, via @ChiniStatus.

Wall’s new D.C. mural is on the famous Ben’s Chili Bowl, via @ChiniStatus.

John Wall is a bonafide superstar…in Kentucky.  He doesn’t always receive that kind of treatment, and I’m not just talking about Colin Cowherd.

For the last two years, the NBA All-Star point guard has worn generic Nike shoes.  After signing a $25 million deal with Reebok before entering the NBA Draft, Wall’s shoe game sputtered.  He made a move to Reebok’s parent company Adidas, but turned down a 2015 offer for $7.5 million a year.  Wall wanted “James Harden money.”  He didn’t get “James Harden money” because his name still doesn’t carry the same weight, writes The Ringer’s Haley O’Shaughnessy.

During the 2014–15 season, prior to Harden’s historic deal, the Rockets were featured on national television 25 times; the Wizards were shown 15 times. Last season, Washington managed just five scheduled appearances. This year that ballooned back up to 14, far behind Houston’s 27. While that kind of exposure is notable, it’s wrong to chalk up the soft Wall market simply to a lack of TV time; the man is nicknamed “Wall-Star” and is regularly called the best point guard in the Eastern Conference.

Wall is not discouraged.  He believes the tide is about to turn back in his favor.

Still, it felt like last summer’s “Harden money” snub was hurting Wall all over again. Wall was still without a shoe deal, and frustration was bubbling over. In August, The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor wrote that he was “the face of the Wizards franchise, but he’s wearing a cloak of invisibility,” after Wall told The Vertical that February, “I ain’t got no billboards in D.C. … I want to leave a legacy and you can’t leave a legacy hiding behind the doors.”

It’s been nearly eight months since Beal’s contract, and Wall’s having the best season of his career. Windhorst, who spent time with the guard in February, says Wall “is convinced he’s going to get the last laugh on all of it. The salary, the shoe deal, the doubters.” And he may be right: Just a week ago, Wall finally got his billboard, Washington-style. He and Beal were painted (above) on the side of the city’s iconic Ben’s Chili Bowl, a famous mural wall that last featured another D.C. legend, Barack Obama.

Wall’s proving ground is the NBA playoffs.  He’s never appeared in the conference finals, but right now, the Wizards are rolling while he does stuff like this…

…and this…

…and this.

For the second consecutive game Wall scored a career-playoff high 32 points in a win.  He added 9 assists and 5 rebounds to give the Wizards a 109-101 win and a 2-0 series lead over the Hawks.

[The Ringer]


BBNBA: Cats go 1-2 on first day of Playoffs

BBNBA: Cats go 1-2 on first day of Playoffs

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Yesterday was the first day of the 2017 NBA playoffs, and three former Kentucky Wildcats suited up for their respective teams. The ex-Cats took home one win and two losses, and one didn’t even get a chance to earn any playing time, but here’s how the three stacked up.

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Andrew Harrison, Memphis Grizzlies (111-82 loss to Spurs)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 20  3-6  1-2  3-4  1  1  2  2  0  0  1  2  -19  10

 

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Patrick Patterson, Toronto Raptors (97-83 loss to Bucks)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 16  1-3  1-3  0-0  0  3  3  1  0  0  1 0  -3  3

Patterson from deep in the corner!

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Trey Lyles, Utah Jazz (97-95 win over Clippers)

DNP – Coach’s Decision

 


Here’s today NBA Playoff Schedule:

  • Atlanta Hawks at Washington Wizards (John Wall), 1pm ET on TNT
  • Portland Trail Blazers at Golden State Warriors, 3:30pm ET on ABC
  • Chicago Bulls (Rajon Rondo) at Boston Celtics (James Young) 6pm ET on TNT
  • Oklahoma City Thunder (Enes Kanter) at Houston Rockets, 9pm ET on TNT

@BrettBibbinsKSR


Tyler Ulis named NBA Rookie of the Month

Today’s a big “told you so” day for Kentucky basketball fans as our beloved Tyler Ulis was named NBA Rookie of the Month in the Western Conference.

Point God had a huge April for the Phoenix Suns in which he averaged 20.7 points, 6.8 assists and 3.8 rebounds in 38 minutes per game. A reminder: He was the 34th pick in the draft and is the shortest player on the court every single night.

Suns fans have fallen in love with Ulis over the last couple of months and this news only fuels their excitement. We’ve always known what Ulis is capable of and now it’s great to see him prove it to a whole new audience on a bigger stage.

Go Ulis.


How Kentucky players dominated the NBA this season

How Kentucky players dominated the NBA this season

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The 2016-17 NBA regular season wrapped up yesterday and this year more than ever, we saw the league turn Kentucky blue, particularly at the top. Twenty-six former Cats played in the league this season, and with another group set to join them in June, let’s review the season that was for the BBNBA.

Complete Season Stats

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(DD = Double Double; While 26 players saw time at some point, only 24 remain on current rosters)

Now, let’s dig a little deeper by comparing those stats to the rest of the league.

In the 2016-17 NBA season, Kentucky Basketball accounted for…

UKentucky_logo The player with the most points in a single game

Devin Booker, 70 points vs. Boston, March 24

Booker scored 70 points, 51 in the second half, earning him the nickname “Mr. 70.” Booker is one of only six players to score 70 points in one game in NBA history, joining Wilt Chamberlain, Kobe Bryant, David Thompson, Elgin Baylor, and David Robinson. At just 20 years old, he’s the youngest player to ever do it.

UKentucky_logo The only player in NBA history with 2,000 points, 1,000 rebounds and 100 three pointers in one season

bbnba-townsKarl Towns

That is a bizarre stat, but hey, what a great reminder of what a complete player Karl has become. He’s also the youngest player (the 15th overall and first since Tim Duncan in 2001-02) to tally 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in a season. A year after winning Rookie of the Year, Karl is on his way to superstardom.

UKentucky_logo The player with the 2nd most assists and steals

bbnba-wallJohn Wall

John Wall trails only James Harden in assists, with 10.7 per game to Harden’s 11.2. He trails Draymond Green in assists with 2.0 per game, the same average as Green, but Green played two fewer games this year.

UKentucky_logo The player with the 4th most points and 2nd most blocks

bbnba-davisAnthony Davis

Anthony Davis averaged 28.0 points this season, trailing only Russell Westbrook (31.6), James Harden (29.1), and Isaiah Thomas (28.9). He also had the 2nd most blocks at 2.23 per game, trailing Utah’s Rudy Gobert, who averaged 2.64 per game. It’s worth pointing out that Davis sat out a handful of games due to injury this season as well.

UKentucky_logo The player with the most points in the paint per game

bbnba-townsKarl Towns

Karl leads the league in points in the paint per game with 14.1, followed by LeBron James (13.9), Giannis Antetokounmpo (13.1), and Anthony Davis (12.9). Pretty good company.

UKentucky_logo The player who ran the second farthest

bbnba-townsKarl Towns

How intense can NBA stats get? They actually track the total distance run during games, and Karl is second behind CJ McCollum with 205.3 miles. That’s a lot of running.

UKentucky_logo Four of the Top 10 Double Double leaders

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 Rank  Player Double Doubles
1 James Harden 64
2 Russell Westbrook 62
2 Karl Towns 62
4 Hassan Whiteside 58
4 Rudy Gobert 58
6 Dwight Howard 53
7 John Wall 50
8 Anthony Davis 49
8 Andre Drummond 49
10 DeMarcus Cousins 46

UKentucky_logo Three of the Top 10 Rebounders

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Rank  Player Rebounds Rebounds per game
1 Hassan Whiteside 1088 14.1
2 Andre Drummond 1115 13.8
  DeAndre Jordan 1114 13.8
4 Rudy Gobert 1035 12.8
5 Dwight Howard 940 12.7
6 Karl Towns 1007 12.3
7 Anthony Davis 884 11.8
8 Kevin Love 666 11.1
9 DeMarcus Cousins 794 11.0
10 Russell Westbrook 864 10.7

UKentucky_logo Three of 25 NBA All-Stars

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Karl really should have been part of this group.

UKentucky_logo The NBA All-Star MVP

ADavis

Anthony Davis, 52 points

Davis’ 52-point performance broke Wilt Chamberlain’s All-Star Game scoring record of 42 points, set back in 1962. Fittingly, it came in front of a home crowd in New Orleans.

UKentucky_logo Four of the 22 NBA Rising Stars

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UKentucky_logo The NBA Rising Stars MVP

Jamal Murray, 36 points, 11 assists

Murray hit 9-14 threes, the second most in the Rising Stars Challenge behind Daniel Gibson’s 11 in 2008.

UKentucky_logo Three of the Top 6 Rookies in the month of April

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Rank Player MIN FG% 3P% FT% REB AST TO STL BLK PTS
1 Tyler Ulis 37.9 48.5 37.0 78.3 3.8 6.8 2.8 0.7 0.2 20.7
2 Buddy Hield 32.8 46.8 47.4 70.0 4.5 2.2 2.0 0.5 0.0 18.8
3 Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot 33.7 44.9 35.9 96.3 3.3 2.3 1.7 1.8 0.0 18.3
4 Sheldon McClellan 35.0 54.5 25.0 83.3 4.0 0.0 2.0 0.0 0.0 18.0
5 Jamal Murray 33.5 44.9 28.9 100 3.6 5.0 2.1 1.3 0.4 15.1
6 Skal Labissiere 29.4 57.7 66.7 81.8 5.3 1.2 1.2 0.8 0.5 13.3

Skal’s growth since the All-Star break was remarkable to watch, and with him, Ulis and Murray seeing more time due to several starters resting, Kentucky’s rookies shined in the final stretch of the season.

UKentucky_logo Seven players in the NBA Playoffs

bbnba-wallbbnba-rondobbnba-kanterbbnba-youngbbnba-pattersonbbnba-harrison-andrewbbnba-lyles

Although the bulk of Kentucky’s talent remains on bad teams because that’s how the draft works, there are seven former Cats reppin’ in the NBA playoffs:

  • John Wall, Wizards
  • Rajon Rondo, Bulls
  • Enes Kanter, Thunder
  • James Young, Celtics
  • Patrick Patterson, Raptors
  • Andrew Harrison, Memphis Grizzlies
  • Trey Lyles, Jazz

Terrence Jones was on the Milwaukee Bucks, who made the playoffs, but was waived last week.

UKentucky_logo The three top scoring centers

bbnba-davisbbnba-cousinsbbnba-towns

According to NBA.com, the top three scoring centers in the NBA all went to Kentucky:

Anthony Davis 28.0 ppg
DeMarcus Cousins 27.0 ppg
Karl Towns 25.1 ppg
Brook Lopez 20.5 ppg
Marc Gasol 19.5 ppg

Of course, now that Davis and Boogie are on the same team, this is probably the only year Kentucky will have the top three centers, but hey, I’ll take it. Davis played 65% of his minutes at center this year (which roughly reflects the time before Boogie joined the Pelicans), but from now on, he’ll dominate the forward category. Davis and Cousins also rank in the top three centers (and forwards) when it comes to rebounding, with 11.8 and 11.0 rebounds, respectively.

 

Not a bad year, right?


CBS Sports

BBNBA: Final games of the regular season

CBS Sports

CBS Sports

Last night was an extremely busy night in the NBA. It was the final game of the 2016-2017 regular season. Some teams were resting their players for the upcoming playoffs, while others were still working for that last playoff slot. Take a look at how the former Cats did in last night’s action.

bbnba-towns

Karl-Anthony Towns, Minnesota Timberwolves (123-118 loss to Rockets)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 36  12-17  3-4  1-1  1  20  21  3  1  0  0  2  +2  28

Just your average 20-20 and record breaking night for KAT.

Pretty solid year from the young fella.

bbnba-murray

Jamal Murray, Denver Nuggets (111-105 win over Thunder)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 41  10-17 4-5  3-3  0  2  2  6  0  1  3  1  +0  27

Last game of the year was probably the best game of the year for Jamal.

Transition pull up game strong.

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Enes Kanter, Oklahoma City Thunder (111-105 loss to Nuggets)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 20  6-8  0-0  0-0  2  3  5  1  1  0  2  2  +8  12

 

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Willie Cauley-Stein, Sacramento Kings (115-95 loss to Clippers)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 35  9-18  0-0  1-1 2  12  14  6  0  1  2  2  -21  19

 

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Skal Labissiere, Sacramento Kings (115-95 loss to Clippers)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 33  3-7  0-1  1-2  0  3  3  1  0  0  1  3  -8  7

Pretty J with a hand in his face.

And the transition oop for Skal!

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Archie Goodwin, Brooklyn Nets (112-73 loss to Bulls)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 29  7-11  0-2  6-10  4  3  7  4  1  1  5  3  -26 20

Archie had his season high in the last game of the year.

bbnba-rondo

Rajon Rondo, Chicago Bulls (112-73 win over Nets)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 2  4-9  2-2  0-0  4  2  6  5  1  0  1  3  +10  10

Nice pass here from Rondo on the oop.

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Alex Poythress, Philadelphia 76ers (114-113 loss to Knicks)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 32  9-14  0-3 0-0  3  3  6  1  1  0  0  3  -5  18

How do you feel about a career high in points on the last night of the season Alex?

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Julius Randle, Los Angeles Lakers (109-94 loss to Warriors)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 24  6-10  0-0  1-1  1  7  8  3  0 0  1  1  -12  13

 

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Nerlens Noel, Dallas Mavericks (100-93 win over Grizzlies)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 23  4-8 0-0  2-2  1  6  7  0  1  1  2  0  -11  10

The usual way for Nerlens.

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DeAndre Liggins, Dallas Mavericks (100-93 win over Grizzlies)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 25  3-6  0-1  2-3  3  4  7  0  2  0  0  3  +7  8

Liggins gets the steal and finishes through contact at the basket.

bbnba-harrison-andrew

Andrew Harrison, Memphis Grizzlies (100-93 loss to Mavericks)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 25  2-6  0-3  4-6  1  3  4  1  1  2  0  4  -13  8

 

bbnba-meeks

Jodie Meeks, Orlando Magic (113-109 win over Pistons)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 18  3-7  3-5  3-4  0  0  0  1  0  0  2  2  -19 12

 

bbnba-patterson

Patrick Patterson, Toronto Raptors (98-83 win over Cavaliers)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 15  1-1  1-1  0-0  0  1  1  0  2  0  0  0  +2  3

 

bbnba-lyles

Trey Lyles, Utah Jazz (101-97 win over Spurs)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
9  0-2  0-0  1-2  0  3  3  0  0  0  1  1  +0  1

 

bbnba-young

James Young, Boston Celtics (112-94 win over Bucks)

MIN FG 3PT FT OREB DREB REB AST STL BLK TO PF +/- PTS
 3  0-1  0-1  1-2  0  0 0  0  0  0  0  0  +2  1

 

@BrettBibbinsKSR


Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

DeMarcus Cousins on Lonzo Ball: “Never heard of him”

Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Lonzo Ball and his dad, LaVar, are in the headlines every day now, it seems, and DeMarcus Cousins had the best reaction when asked about them this weekend. A reporter from TMZ asked Boogie who he thought were the best draft prospects in college basketball, and he started off by dutifully mentioning his fellow Kentucky Wildcats.

“I’m gonna roll with De’Aaron Fox, Malik Monk, my boy Bam Bam. Anybody that come out of Kentucky. Anybody that come out of Lexington, they the best prospect. Big Blue.”

What about Lonzo Ball, the UCLA point guard projected to go second in the draft even though Fox outplayed him?

“Never heard of him,” Boogie quipped, before adding, “His dad is a legend, man.”

Gotta love Boogie.

[TMZ]


BBNBA: Skal Labissiere continues to rise, Karl Towns scores 40

@SacramentoKings

@SacramentoKings

As we shared with you last night, Skal Labissiere’s rise late this season has been great to watch. Last night, Skal had one of his best nights yet, putting up 25 points and 6 rebounds in the Kings’ loss to the Rockets. That’s where we’ll start today’s BBNBA roundup.

bbnba-labissiereSkal Labissiere, Kings (135-128 loss to the Rockets)

MIN

FG

3PT

FT

OREB

DREB

REB

AST

STL

BLK

TO

PF

+/-

PTS

31

10-12

0-0

5-6

2

4

6

3

2

0

0

3

+12

25

Skal’s averaging 15.3 points and 5.8 rebounds in the month of April and has jumped into the top ten of rookie scoring since the All-Star break. His 25 points last night came off 12 shots:


bbnba-cauley-stein-wcsWillie Cauley-Stein, Kings (135-128 loss to the Rockets)

MIN

FG

3PT

FT

OREB

DREB

REB

AST

STL

BLK

TO

PF

+/-

PTS

25

6-12

0-0

4-4

2

8

10

0

0

1

0

2

-16

16

Willie had a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Two of those points came off this impressive pick and roll:


bbnba-townsKarl Towns, Timberwolves (110-109 loss to the Lakers)

MIN

FG

3PT

FT

OREB

DREB

REB

AST

STL

BLK

TO

PF

+/-

PTS

41

17-22

1-2

5-8

3

18

21

4

1

1

3

3

+6

40

Karl Towns and Andrew Wiggins combined for 81 of the Timberwolves’ 109 points last night. In one of the most random stats I’ve seen, Karl is just four threes and 26 rebounds away from the league’s first 100 three-pointer, 100 block, 1,000 rebound season. This three got him closer:


bbnba-randleJulius Randle, Lakers (110-109 win over the Timberwolves)

MIN

FG

3PT

FT

OREB

DREB

REB

AST

STL

BLK

TO

PF

+/-

PTS

28

5-9

0-2

3-5

3

5

8

2

1

1

2

3

-5

13


bbnba-ulisTyler Ulis, Suns (124-111 win over the Mavericks)

MIN

FG

3PT

FT

OREB

DREB

REB

AST

STL

BLK

TO

PF

+/-

PTS

33

7-13

2-3

4-4

0

3

3

10

0

1

3

0

+11

20

Ulis and Booker continue to shine as Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight sit out to rest. Last night, Ulis had 20 points and 10 assists, continuing to prove he’s one of the steals of the 2016 draft:

Man, I miss that kid.


bbnba-bookDevin Booker, Suns (124-111 win over the Mavericks)

MIN

FG

3PT

FT

OREB

DREB

REB

AST

STL

BLK

TO

PF

+/-

PTS

23

8-15

1-4

4-5

0

2

2

3

0

0

2

1

+13

21

Booker’s 21 points moved him past Kobe Bryant for the fourth most points by a player before turning 21 years old in NBA history. Afterwards, he made a young fan’s day:

And then Dirk Nowitzki made his day by giving him an autographed pair of his shoes:

Somewhere, TJ Beisner is insanely jealous.


(more…)


Skal Labissiere is working hard to improve, silence critics

skal

After being selected 28th overall in last year’s NBA Draft, Skal Labissiere had a long road ahead of him. First, his goal was to impress the coaches enough to earn a spot on the roster. The Sacramento Kings were already loaded with former Kentucky big men DeMarcus Cousins and Willie Cauley-Stein.

Once he solidified his spot with the Kings, Skal then had to compete for time on the court. His rookie season had a lot of ups and downs, with more ups towards the end of this season. After Cousins was traded to the Pelicans, Labissiere was able to earn more playing time. From there, Skal began to showcase his tendency to attack rebounds and block opposing shots left & right. 

“Skal seems like a meek, humble, quiet guy off the court,” veteran guard Garrett Temple said, “but when he gets between the lines, he is a very different person. He attacks rebounds. He has immense talent and an excellent work ethic. He is receptive to coaching. He wants to be a great, great player in this league.”

With his first NBA season coming to a close, there’s much more room for improvement. This Summer, Skal plans to add more muscle mass in the weight room. He also looks forward to another great week in Las Vegas during the NBA Summer League. According to him, there’s no time to rest during the offseason. Here’s what he had to say about his pace for improving:

“I’m feeling a little more comfortable out there,” Labissiere said, with a soft smile. “It’s me learning at my own pace, not getting rushed, learning how to see things on the court. It’s not about the next three or four games, it’s about the next couple years, learning how to play with each, develop our chemistry. I’m nowhere near (physically) where I want to be. But this should be a fun summer. Lots of time with the weights, and working on all aspects of my game.”

It’ll be fun to watch how Skal improves in the years to come. He’s still a young player, with every intent to prove critics wrong for passing him up in the draft.

You can read more about Skal Labissiere’s rookie year in the following article by the Sacramento Bee:

http://www.sacbee.com/sports/spt-columns-blogs/ailene-voisin/article143565934.html

 


Devin Booker Adds Another Feather To His Cap

pi-nba-suns-devin-booker-120715-vresize-1200-675-high-80

The star-making season continues for Devin Booker. The Suns are currently taking on the Mavericks, and in the midst of that game, Book managed enough points to put him in a rarified air:

Now, I’m not saying that Devin Booker is the next Kobe Bryant. But I’m not not saying it.

@JayWinkKSR