Tag:Ben Golliver
Posted on: February 11, 2012 1:22 am
Edited on: February 12, 2012 2:18 pm

Jeremy Lin, Knicks beat Lakers: photo gallery

Posted by Ben Golliver

New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin scored a career-high 38 points against the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night, sending the Madison Square Garden crowd into a tizzy time and again with his big shot-making. (You can watch every basket here, if you missed it live.) 

Lin, a Taiwanese-American guard from Harvard, has emerged as a major, pleasant surprise for the Knicks. New York's win over Los Angeles was its fourth consecutive victory, and Lin's 89 points in his first three career starts are more than any player has scored in their first three starts since the NBA and ABA merged in 1976-1977, according to ESPN Stats & Information and the Elias Sports Bureau.

The Knicks reportedly considered waiving Lin prior to his recent explosion and he had been crashing on a teammate's couch. His sensational play this week led his former GMs to admit their mistakes in cutting him, it drew comparisons to the breakout success of Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow, and it inspired a song. "Linsanity" has gotten so big that, as Ken Berger of CBSSports.com reported, Lin received some pre-game advice from Lakers forward Metta World Peace.

Here's a visual look back at Lin's magical night against the Lakers on Friday, from start to finish.

All photographs courtesy of Chris Chambers and Nathaniel S. Butler for Getty Images.

Lin's image is shown on the jumbrotron during player introductions. (Chris Chambers, Getty Images)

Lin swoops in for the lay-up in transition after the Knicks defense forced a first half turnover. (Chris Chambers, Getty Images)

Lin skies for a reverse lay-up over Lakers big man Pau Gasol during the second half. (Nathaniel S. Butler, Getty Images)

Lin celebrates with his teammates after knocking down a second half jumper as Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni tries to hide his excitement. (Nathaniel S. Butler, Getty Images)

Lin holds his release on a fourth quarter 3-pointer, as the Madison Square Garden crowd cheers him on. (Nathaniel S. Butler, Getty Images)

Lin went head-to-head with Lakers All-Star guard Kobe Bryant, who made headlines on Thursday by admitting he didn't know much about Lin's recent play. (Nathaniel S. Butler, Getty Images)

Two of Lin's fans wear his jersey and hold iPads bearing his image and name. (Nathaniel S. Butler, Getty Images)

Three Lin fans catch "Linsanity" with t-shirt designs bearing the letters in his name. (Nathaniel S. Butler, Getty Images)

Two Knicks fans seated courtside wear Jeremy Lin masks to show their support. (Nathaniel S. Butler, Getty Images)
Posted on: February 10, 2012 11:20 pm
Edited on: February 12, 2012 2:19 pm

Knicks G Jeremy Lin career-high 38 points (video)

Posted by Ben Golliver

Here's video of all 13 field goals by New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin on his way to a career-high 38 points against the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night at Madison Square Garden.

Lin scored in every conceivable manner, knocking down 3-pointers, hitting pull-up jumpers, taking defenders off the dribble, hitting leaners and finishing a nifty spinning lay-up, among other feats of offensive genius.

The Knicks defeated the Lakers, 92-85, and Lin's 38 points were a game-high, topping Lakers guard Kobe Bryant. Lin finished 13-for-23 from the field and added 7 assists, 4 rebounds and 2 steals in 39 minutes. The Knicks were without All-Star forwards Amar'e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony.

Here's the ridiculous highlight reel of every Jeremy Lin basket during his career-high game for the New York Knicks against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Posted on: February 10, 2012 10:26 pm
Edited on: February 12, 2012 2:20 pm

Kobe Bryant pass to himself off backboard, assist

Posted by Ben Golliver

Los Angeles Lakers All-Star guard Kobe Bryant threw a pass to himself off the backboard to set up an assist to All-Star forward Pau Gasol during the fourth quarter of a Friday night game against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden.

It was Bryant's only assist on the night. He finished with 34 points and 10 rebounds in a 92-85 loss to the Knicks. Bryant was overshadowed by a career-high 38 points by Knicks guard Jeremy Lin, as "Linsanity" was at full tilt for much of the evening

Still, this was a remarkable play, as Bryant was clearly trapped, lost his dribble and was dealing with heavy defensive pressure. That a play as unusual and smoothly executed as this -- made by the league's most recognizable star, no less -- could be a footnote shows exactly how big the Lin phenomenon is right now. This is Lin's world, for now, and we're all just living in it.  

Here's video of Bryant's tricky self-pass off the backboard, assist to Pau Gasol combination play against the Knicks.

Posted on: February 10, 2012 1:20 pm
Edited on: February 10, 2012 1:21 pm

Popovich: Ginobili will return Saturday vs. Nets

Manu Ginobili is expected to return Saturday. (Getty Images)
Posted by Ben Golliver

San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili is expected back on the court for the first time in more than a month this weekend.

MySanAntonio.com reports
that Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters that Ginobili will play against the New Jersey Nets on Saturday after going through a full-contact practice on Friday.

Ginobili, who has been sidelined since Jan. 2 after breaking a bone in his left hand, will not start and his minutes are reportedly expected to be limited. It was reported earlier this week that a return to the court was imminent.

The original timetable for Ginobili's return was 6-8 weeks. A Saturday return would mean that Ginobili missed just under six weeks after the injury.

The Nets contest is the third game of a 9-game road trip. The Spurs are 18-9 on the season, good for first place in the Southwest Division. San Antonio went 15-7 since Ginobili went down, making due thanks to talented rookie Kawhi Leonard, Gary Neal and Danny Green

Ginobili, 34, averaged 17.4 points, 3.8 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game in his five appearances before suffering the injury. He was named to the 2011 All-Star team and All-NBA third team last season.
Posted on: February 9, 2012 9:50 pm
Edited on: February 9, 2012 9:51 pm

Rockets & Warriors GMs admit Jeremy Lin mistakes

Jeremy Lin is making his former GMs look bad. (Getty Images)
Posted by Ben Golliver 

How crazy is this Jeremy Lin story? So crazy that two NBA general managers have publicly admitted that letting him go was a mistake.

Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey took to Twitter on Thursday morning to cop his plea.

"We should have kept Jeremy Lin," Morey wrote. "Did not know he was this good.Anyone who says they knew [is] misleading you... Really happy Jeremy Lin. Very hard working, nice, & humble. He has a great, great future." 

Then, in an interview with the New York Times, Golden State Warriors GM Larry Riley did the same.
“We always felt there would be some chance he’d be a backup point guard,” said Larry Riley, the Warriors general manager. “I have egg on my face in telling you that I did not think he was going to become a starting point guard with a good team. He’s doing that right now.”
Lin, the Knicks' Taiwanese-American point guard sensation, has scored 23 or more points in three straight games to help lead New York to consecutive wins over the New Jersey Nets, Utah Jazz and Washington Wizards.

Undrafted out of Harvard, Lin earned his first NBA contract with the Warriors after impressing at the 2010 NBA Summer League while playing for a team affiliated with the Dallas Mavericks. Lin wound up playing in just 29 games for Golden State, averaging 2.6 points and 1.4 assists in just 9.8 minutes per game.

When the Warriors released him prior to the 2011-2012 season, Lin signed briefly with the Rockets, but was released before he could appear in a single game. 

The Knicks wound up claiming Lin off of waivers on Dec. 27, and the rest is history.

And this really is history. Basketball operations executives admit mistakes at a rate of approximately one per lifetime. For the same player to produce two admissions of error in less than 24 hours is almost certainly a league record.
Posted on: February 9, 2012 9:10 pm

Report: Kevin Love to enter Three-Point Contest

Kevin Love says he will compete in the 3-point shootout. (Getty Images)
Posted by Ben Golliver 

Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love was named to his second All-Star Game on Thursday. But, wait, there's more.

The Star-Tribune reports that Love said on Thursday that he will compete in the NBA's annual Three-Point Contest as well. The shooting contest is an annual staple of the league's All-Star Saturday festivities.

 "I think I got a good shot at anything I do," Love said, according to the paper. "I’m a pretty competitive guy." 

Miami Heat forward James Jones won the 2011 Three-Point Contest in Los Angeles, defeating Boston Celtics forward Paul Pierce, Celtics guard Ray Allen, Golden State Warriors forward Dorell Wright, Cleveland Cavaliers guard Daniel Gibson and Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant.

Love, 23, is averaging 25.0 points, 13.6 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 39.4 minutes per game this season.

He's shooting 37.8 percent from deep, while launching a career-high 4.6 threes per game.

Full rosters for the Three-Point Contest, Slam Dunk Contest and other All-Star Saturday events have not yet been announced. 
Posted on: February 9, 2012 7:17 pm
Edited on: February 10, 2012 9:54 am

2012 NBA East, West All-Star teams announced

Posted by Ben Golliver 

Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade will lead their respective conferences into the 2012 NBA All-Star Game. (Getty Images)

The NBA officially announced the complete 2012 Eastern Conference and Western Conference All-Star teams on Thursday.

The seven reserve spots were selected by a vote of each conference’s head coaches.

The Eastern Conference reserves: Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh, Atlanta Hawks guard Joe Johnson, Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert, Boston Celtics forward Paul Pierce, New Jersey Nets guard Deron Williams, Chicago Bulls forward Luol Deng and Philadelphia 76ers forward Andre Iguodala.

The Western Conference reserves: Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love, Portland Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge, Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook, Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki, San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker, Phoenix Suns guard Steve Nash and Memphis Grizzlies center Marc Gasol.

The starting lineups for both teams, selected by a fan voting process, were unveiled last week.

The Eastern Conference starting lineup: Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose, Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade, Heat forward LeBron James, New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony and Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard.

The Western Conference starting lineup: Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul, Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant, Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant, Clippers forward Blake Griffin and Lakers center Andrew Bynum. 

The Associated Press offers the following notes and quotes on the selection.

Nowitzki was chosen Thursday to his 11th straight All-Star game, with coaches overlooking the lowest scoring average since his second NBA season in favor of his long-term excellence.

"It was a tough road back to full health for me, but I am honored that the coaches thought enough of me to make me an All-Star," Nowitzki said in a statement. "It has been a privilege to represent the Mavericks organization over the last decade and I look forward to doing it again in Orlando."

But Kevin Garnett wasn't chosen after 14 consecutive selections, and Tim Duncan was left out after 13 in a row. Other All-Star regulars such as Ray Allen and Amar'e Stoudemire will be home, giving way to five first-timers among the reserves: Portland's LaMarcus Aldridge, Marc Gasol of Memphis, Andre Iguodala of Philadelphia, Indiana's Roy Hibbert, and Chicago's Luol Deng.

Age didn't stop Nash, averaging 10 assists and shooting 56 percent from the field. He became just the fourth player to earn an All-Star spot at 38 or older, joining Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Michael Jordan and Karl Malone.
The 2012 All-Star Game will be played at the Amway Center in Orlando on Feb. 26. Bryant will look to repeat his performance as the 2011 NBA All-Star Game MVP. Here's a look at the jerseys that will be worn during the game.

For more coverage of the 2012 NBA All-Star Game, check out CBSSports.com's NBA All-Star Game hub.
Posted on: February 9, 2012 6:17 pm
Edited on: February 9, 2012 7:40 pm

2012 NBA All-Star reserves roundtable

Posted by Ben Golliver, Matt Moore and Royce Young 

All eyes are on Love, Griffin and the rest of the West forwards again. (Getty Images)

1. The Western forwards are the toughest decision. What's your pick there and what's the second toughest decision?

Matt Moore: Pau Gasol's not worthy and doesn't have the historic success to validate a career achievement selection. Paul Millsap gets hosed because he doesn't have enough usage. It's Griffin, Love, and LaMarcus Aldridge. You simply can't exclude any of them. Second toughest I think is whether to include anyone from the Hawks or Sixers. Both teams use comprehensive, cohesive approach to both sides of the ball. Choosing one guy seems a disservice to the others. 

Royce Young: I think you have to take both LaMarcus Aldridge and Kevin Love. There's just no way around it. Pau Gasol and Paul Millsap are snubs, but that's just life. I'd say the second toughest decision is between Tony Parker, Steve Nash and James Harden. All three have terrific claims, but not all three can go. 

Ben Golliver: I disagree with the premise of the question and agree with you guys. It's clearly Griffin, Love and Aldridge. Griffin is the most questionable of the three and he's already in by default. Millsap likely get hosed but there's a process to this All-Star thing and he's working his way up the chain; Nowitzki definitely doesn't deserve it and he did the right thing by saying as much. I don't think this one is all that tough. I would probably cheat and try to sneak Pau Gasol in as a center, or play semantics and call Aldridge a center to get Gasol in as a forward. The spillover effect at the West center is probably the toughest. Pau and Marc Gasol both have a case, Al Jefferson probably thinks he has a case and Tim Duncan looms as the sentimental guy. Something has to give. 

2. Let's say the reserves all have to actually be reserves, non-starters. What's your list?

Young: In the East, can I just say the 76ers bench? Because that's pretty much it. For the West, Mo Williams, James Harden, Jamal Crawford, Jason Terry, Al Harrington, Derrick Favors and Yao Ming (just kidding).

: West I'd go Mo Williams, James Harden, Nicolas Batum, Al Harrington, Derrick Favors, Ian Mahinmi, O.J. Mayo. East I'd go with J.J. Redick, C.J. Watson, Lou Williams, Thaddeus Young, Brandon Bass, Ersan Ilyasova, and Jodan Farmar.

Golliver: The Eastern Conference doesn't have a full team of All-Star worthy starters this year, let alone reserves. You might as well just send Andray Blatche if we are going to play that game. In terms of the West, maybe just an all-perimeter line-up of Mo Williams, James Harden, Andre Miller, Jason Terry, Jamal Crawford, and Jimmer Fredette, just because this was kind of a dumb question. Al Harrington and Nicolas Batum would be in too.

3. Who's getting hosed the most Thursday night? 

Golliver: I'm worried it will be Kyrie Irving, due to the blind anti-rookie bias and the fact that Cleveland is just a touch out of the playoff picture in the East. His case statistically is stronger than any of the other snubs. Top-25 league-wide in PER as a teenager? That deserves a medal.

Moore: Marc Gasol. Arguably the best center in the West and his star power isn't enough to warrant a selection. 

Young: I'm afraid it's going to be Kyle Lowry. He's playing on a decent Houston team and is really kind of having an MVP quality season, but it seems not many are noticing it. Plus, there are way too many good, bigger name point guards in the West.

4. Let's say Rondo sits out to get healthy. Who do you take between Kyrie Irving, Deron Williams, and Brandon Jennings?

Moore: Deron Williams and Kyrie Irving. Williams' numbers stack up and I won't punish Williams for getting traded to the Nets who can't put together a team if it was 2kSports, and Irving is already a premier point guard with elite production numbers. Jennings hasn't been efficient long enough. 

I go with Irving and Jennings. Deron Williams just doesn't get a pass for mailing in the first three weeks of the season. He's playing more like himself lately, but he wasn't good for a while. Jennings is a tad erratic, but has carried the Bucks near .500 while being without Andrew Bogut for a lot of the season. And Irving, well, he's just been fantastic, rookie or not. 

Golliver: Jennings has a shockingly compelling case given the season he had last year but I think it's Irving and then Williams. D-Will has probably taken the biggest step back in overall appeal of any 2011 All-Star since Los Angeles.

5. Who's going to be the worst All-Star selected this year, starter or reserve? Think Gerald Wallace's performance in 2010. 

: Joe Johnson. I'm always so bored when Joe Johnson gets picked, but it's inevitable.

Golliver: Roy Hibbert, assuming he gets selected or added at a later date. He will only be remembered if he gets Mozgov'd or Perkins'd. After writing this I'm now actively hoping he winds up snubbed.

Moore: Andre Iguodala makes everyone better. That's like, the opposite of what the All-Star game is about. Iggy's a worthy selection but not a great fit. Too selfless.
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com