Tag:Houston Rockets
Posted on: January 11, 2011 4:00 am
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Posted on: January 11, 2011 3:45 am
Edited on: January 11, 2011 3:59 am
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Melo Update No. 7,459

The Nuggets are threatening the Nets with trading Melo to the Knicks and the Rockets want in on the Melo talks. 
Posted by Matt Moore

Guess who's back, back again. Carmelo Anthony rumors are back, tell a friend. Who probably already has stopped caring. Oh, I busted the rhyme. Oh, well. Life goes on. Here's the latest word on the Carmelo Anthony rumors as we enter day 7,000 of MeloDrama Watch. 
  • Sports Illustrated and the Houston Chronicle report that the Rockets have very quietly slipped in the back door while the Nets remain flabbergasted with Denver's seemingly moving target of required assets. Both reports state that the Rockets are "not close" to a deal, but hoping that thing stagnate with the Nets, opening the door for the Rockets to make a move before the deadline. 
  • Yahoo! Sports on the other hand is reporting that the Nuggets have "threatened" the Nets with trading Melo to the Knicks, deliberately to spite the Nets if talks of the deal being worked on don't go quiet to the public.

Let's begin with the threat, since it may be the most ridiculous development mentioned in this entire ordeal, and bear in mind that means it's more ridiculous than Johan Petro being the linchpin in a three-team deal involving as many as 15 players at once. 

In this scenario, the Nuggets are threatening a team with taking less assets in order to trade their star player to an already-playoff team in the hopes of angering their current trade partner who they have already jerked around for several months.  It's either an empty threat or an immature, pointless move. If it's the former, it's a transparent one as well. If it's the latter, it's yet another indication that Masai Ujiri may be in over his head. Ujiri has garnered acclaim for constantly working to squeeze the most out of this situation. But if he's really threatening other teams with trading with their rival, that's a pretty drama-queen move. 

Worse still, it moves the Nuggets no closer to resolution, and that's something they need to go ahead and do. The rumors have gotten so loud they've hit distraction level. They were just your usual stressor for the team for a while, but now they're a legitimate distraction and it's time to get it done. 

As for the Rockets, their name always pops up whenever trade rumors are discussed. Yet for all the assets the Rockets have, they've been unable to make a major move, outside of acquiring Courtney Lee and Terrence Williams.  They have two first round picks in 2012, but can't get in on any of the relevant discussions at an advanced stage. Furthermore, had Melo been interested in playing in Houston, that information would have been made available well before now. So while it's probably true that the Rockets have voiced their interest, their odds have to be considered abysmal at completing a deal. 
(For a blow-by-blow of the latest talks between the Nets and Nuggets, read Ken Berger's latest here.)
Posted on: January 10, 2011 9:21 am
 

Shootaround 1.10.11: Melo Melo Melo

Posted by Royce Young
  • Carmelo Anthony scored a season-low eight points and was booed by his home fans Sunday. Chris Dempsey of The Denver Post: "Carmelo Anthony strolled into the Pepsi Center about an hour and 15 minutes before the game that could turn out to be his last -- or very close to his last -- in a Nuggets uniform. And there seemed to be a component of 'senioritis' to his game on a snowy Sunday night against New Orleans. On the bench, he was carefree. He bobbed his head to the music over the loudspeakers, and frolicked through a first half that was generally bad for his team. And on the court, the man who makes his living putting up shots and scoring in bunches took just two shots in the first half. The Nuggets lost this game 96-87 in front of 16,283 fans. But more than a game, for the first time it appeared the Nuggets lost the interest of their star as well. And when that became the perception, many in the crowd turned on the player, who they felt was thumbing his nose at them. Anthony was booed loudly in the fourth quarter when he entered the game on a substitution."
  • Did you know LeBron had a big game last night? Jason Quick of The Oregonian: "Blame it on Nike. Blame it on the Trail Blazers' defense. Or just blame it on greatness. For whatever reason, whenever LeBron James steps into the Rose Garden, he suddenly adds shooting prowess to his already vast array of talents. James, whose status as the world's greatest basketball player is debated perhaps only because of his suspect outside shooting, put on yet another shooting display at the Rose Garden on Sunday, scoring 44 points in leading Miami to a come-from-behind 107-100 overtime victory over the stunned Blazers. It was all part of the Blazers' game plan: Go under screens and prevent James from penetrating, in a sense daring James to shoot. And shoot he did, making 17 of 26, including 3 of 5 from three-point range, one starting the Heat's comeback from a 91-84 deficit with 1:39 left, and the final two in overtime, piercing daggers to a Blazers team that thought it had its ninth consecutive home win wrapped up in regulation."
  • Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic: "That was the drabbest the Suns' locker room has been after a victory in some time. Appropriately, nobody was giddy about getting the first win of 2011 against Cleveland at home. There was not much of a good feeling about having to scrap to hand the NBA's worst team its 16th consecutive road loss."
Posted on: January 7, 2011 6:05 pm
 

Report: Warriors could be interested in Yao Ming

Posted by Royce Young

Most teams are interested in Yao Ming because of his contract. That $17 million expiring deal with an $8 million insurance policy is definitely intriguing to rebuilding clubs.

But as Yahoo! Sports reports, the Golden State Warriors might be interested in Yao for more reasons than just the money.
Don’t be surprised if the Warriors make a run at injured Houston Rockets center Yao Ming after he becomes a free agent this summer. While Yao is expected to be out as long as 10 months after undergoing ankle surgery, the Warriors have long wanted to add him to help boost their profile in the area’s Asian community.

Seldom-used rookie guard Jeremy Lin is nearly as popular as Stephen Curry and Monta Ellis . The Warriors would jump at signing Yao for a reasonable price.
So don't misunderstand: The Warriors are interested in free agent Yao, not current $17 million Yao. More than likely, someone is going to make a play for Yao because of the money, but regardless, he's going to be on the open market this summer.

Yao has already said that he's not ready to call it quits. He wants to give basketball another shot, but it's pretty clear his next opportunity won't be with Houston.

But the fit in the Bay Area could be a good one. He'd have immediate support and a franchise that doesn't need him to be the focal point of the offense. I'm not sure how well he'd fit into the up and down style of the Warriors, but he'd certainly give Eliis and Curry a nice inside-out option to work off of.

Hopefully Yao has another opportunity waiting for him this summer. And if he can get healthy, he'll surely get a chance somewhere.
Posted on: January 6, 2011 3:36 pm
Edited on: January 6, 2011 4:16 pm
 

Yao Ming has surgery, does it matter?

Yao Ming has had surgery on his ankle to repair a stress fracture. But is it too late?
Posted by Matt Moore

The Houston Rockets today have announced that Yao Ming underwent surgery Thursday to repair the stress fracture in his ankle. The surgery was deemed successful and Yao has released the following statement: 
"I'd like to thank everyone for their ongoing support. I know this will be another long rehab, but I'm looking forward to beginning my recovery. I will use this time to consider all of my options, and will make a decision regarding my career plans as I get closer to the end of my rehab."
So surgery, again, and again successful. But at the end of this, his seemingly ninetieth road to recovery in the past decade, the question will weigh more heavily than ever: is it time to surrender to the will of the body?  Yao was a tentative target to sustain this season with the damage his feet have incurred due to his humongous frame over the years in basketball. Now, there's the complication of an ankle fracture on top of it. That's a fragile set of structures already damaged multiple times in the last few years. That's a lot of pain for one person to go through when he's already financially sound. And that's a small probability that he'll be able to come back at anything close to effectiveness, and an even smaller chance that he won't sustain further injuries in his legs. 

It's a terrible decision to have to make, to say you're done when your mind and spirit says you're not. In the meantime, he may not be on the Rockets next season, he may have difficulty obtaining a contract with his history, and even if he could, trying to reach a level of contention with that team would take an extraordinary set of events. 

Yao's had surgery.  But his future in basketball remains dark.
Category: NBA
Posted on: January 4, 2011 12:52 pm
Edited on: January 4, 2011 1:11 pm
 

Game Changer 1.4.11: A Minnesotan Comedy

Posted by Matt Moore.

Each game is made up of elements which help formulate the outcome. Monday through Friday, we'll bring you the elements from the night before's games in our own specialized version of the game recaps. It's not everything that happened, but it's an insight into what lead to the results you'll see in the box scores. This is the Game Changer.

THE BIG ONE: A MINNESOTA FAILURE IN THREE PARTS

Act One: The Wolves Seize the Day

The Wolves took control on the back of solid jump shooting and good defense. Kevin Love's 24 rebounds were the most anyone has ever snagged in TD Northbank Gardens, but it was solid defense on Minnesota's part that forced enough misses to allow for those. At least until the fourth quarter. The Wolves' bench outscored Boston's, which doesn't happen very often, even with Boston banged up. Martell Webster and Wesley Johnson were slinging it, and knocking them down, looking very much like a solid jump-shooting component.  The Wolves played solid, the Wolves played strong, the Wolves ... forgot all about those things when the fourth quarter showed up. 

Act Two: The Celtics Do As Celtics Do

You already know the tale, but I'll share it with you, regardless. Ray Allen got open, despite being the one guy on the club you don't ever want open, not if a meteor rips the top half of the arena off. Luke Ridnour turned in a terrible quarter that only got worse, and the Celtics' defense clamped down. The Wolves kept going to Beasley, who kept scoring, but then would let things like Pekovic jumpers happen. The wheels were spinning off pretty fast, but were still on until Paul Pierce hit a pull-up transition three. That made an eight point lead five. When that happens, the Celtics know there's blood in the water. 

Act Three: A Comedy of Likely Errors

Rajon Rondo hit a jumper, prompting Celtics announcer Tommy Heinsohn to yell in mockery "Oh, Rondo can't shoot! Rondo can't score! Sorry!" in quite possibly the most obnoxious impersonation of a drunken buffoon, ever.  In related news, on the possession following Rondo's push of the Celtics' lead to three, he clanged a completely wide open jumper. Heinsohn said nothing. Kevin Love grabbed the rebound (surprise!), and saw a Timberwolf jetting out ahead of the pack in transition. So there's Love, arguably the best outlet passer in the game, with a wide-open layup-maker waiting for him to drop the ball in the lap of.  Kurt Rambis called timeout. 

Rambis did nothing wrong.  That's what you should do there. Advance the ball. Make sure you get a solid shot. Granted, those of us in our comfy chairs would probably say you have a better chance with Kevin Love throwing an outlet in traffic than having Kurt Rambis draw up a good game winning shot. But that's neither here nor there. It just speaks to the sad reality of how doomed the Wolves were in this game. 

After the timeout, Rambis actually called a pretty great play. Drawing the attention on Beasley, Luke Ridnour slipped underneath the wall of coverage the Celtics had put up and had a wide open path to the bucket.  Wide. Open. So of course Ridnour proceeded to have his oft layup blocked into the 9th row by Ray Allen (that's right, Ray Allen), but not before he traveled upon receiving the pass. It would have been painful, were it not so hilarious. 

And that, as they say, is how the West was won. In the East. And not, like, the Western Conference. Just this game. That phrase doesn't really work here.  

Much like the Timberwolves

GO-GO-GADGET LINE OF THE NIGHT:

LeBron James: 38 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists

Runners-Up:

Monta Ellis: 20 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists

Hedo Turkoglu: 10 points, 14 rebounds, 10 assists

THE Warriors SHOULD REALLY JUST STOP AT HALFTIME

See, if the Warriors could just convince the officials to stop the games at halftime, they'd be set. Days after a massive collapse against the Miami Heat, the Warriors were at it again, leading by 9 at half, then losing by a huge margin in the second. They were outscored 66-37 in the second half, as the Magic unloaded from the arc, hitting 12 of 21 threes in the 2nd. It's bizarre to see a team let off the gas that much, to collapse that poorly, in consecutive games. If you're Keith Smart, this is a nightmare, and something difficult to correct. But they need to, and fast. 

FINAL THOUGHTS:

Houston is unable to get any stops when they need to. They had a good lock on their game against the Nuggets, but just kept slipping on banana peels and letting Denver score at will. The feel of the game was Houston's, the shooting percentages were Denver's. 

When Miami  has LeBron James and Dwyane Wade going? It's as fearsome as we predicted. It's the Bobcats, but still. 

As much as everyone's concerned about the Jazz, Al Jefferson is starting to get it. 16 points, 8 rebounds on 7-13 shooting, and every game he and Deron Williams figure out more about one another.
Posted on: January 3, 2011 7:29 pm
Edited on: January 3, 2011 7:32 pm
 

CBSSports.com NBA Videos: 01.03.2011

2011's first weekly dose of CBSSports.com NBA video content. Posted by Ben Golliver.

Welcome to the first week of 2011, and here's the year's first serving (a big helping) of CBSSports.com NBA video content. 

Get it started with the Starting Five, a question and answer rundown of some of this week's hot topics. Yours truly joined hosts Adam Aizer and Greg Urbano to discuss the injury to Kevin Garnett, the Miami Heat's surge, the Houston Rockets' playoff chances and whether Chicago can contend. Also, do the San Antonio Spurs have what it takes to win 72 games? 

Take a look and have a listen.



Also this week, Aizer and Urbano break down the NBA Coach of the Year race to date. Texas shows well in the discussion, with Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle and San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich among the leaders. 



But, wait, there's more. The guys also discussed their weekly power rankings, which you can watch right here

And if you're looking for even more NBA audio content with a fantasy focus, check out this week's CBSSports Fantasy Basketball Podcast, which discusses recent injuries to Mavericks forward Caron Butler and New York Knicks forward Danilo Gallinari. You can also read more on Gallinari's knee sprain here.
Posted on: January 3, 2011 12:03 pm
Edited on: January 6, 2011 8:08 pm
 

The Game Changer: Memphis mauls the Lakers

Posted by Royce Young

Each game is made up of elements which help formulate the outcome. Monday through Friday, we'll bring you the elements from the night before's games in our own specialized version of the game recaps. It's not everything that happened, but it's an insight into what lead to the results you'll see in the box scores. This is the Game Changer.

THE BIG ONE: MEMPHIS WALKS OVER L.A.

This really was kind of a bizarro game. The Lakers fell behind early to a quicker, more athletic Grizzlies team and never had the firepower to really make up the deficit.

It was basically the formula you see good teams use to beat bad ones. A couple 6-2 runs placed in between bigger 10-2 ones and before you know it, the margin is 20. And that's what the Grizzlies did to the Lakers all night.

Kobe tried to shoot the Lakers back into the game late finishing with a fourth quarter flurry of points, but it was too late. Rudy Gay had already done too much damage, Zach Randolph had already had his way inside and O.J. Mayo had already gotten hot from outside.

Obviously the look here is at the Lakers who have lost again, this time big against a sub-.500 team. But really, shouldn't we be impressed a little with the Grizzlies? They've started playing much better the past few games and take away Tyreke Evans' miracle and they've won four of five. As it stands, they're three below .500 but have three straight tough ones playing the Thunder twice and the Jazz in the middle.

But while the Lakers will gain most of the chatter for getting worked over by Memphis, I think it's at least courteous to give a little credit where credit is due. The Lakers don't lose just by playing bad. Someone had to make them do it. And the Grizzlies did Sunday.

GO-GO-GADGET LINES

Blake Griffin had a very Blake Griffin night. Big highlights and 31 point and 15 rebounds.

DeAndre Jordan was actually quite good as well: six points, 12 rebounds and six blocks

DeMarcus Cousins had the best game of his young career with 28 points, eight rebounds and six assists

Danny Granger finished with 25 points and 17 rebounds in a loss to the Knicks.

Antwan Jamison dropped 35 and pulled in 10 boards, but the Cavs lost to the Mavericks.

RONDO RETURNS, BOSTON WINS

It wasn't against a great team or anything, but the Celtics got Rajon Rondo back and took care of business, dispersing the Raptors. Paul Pierce scored 30 on 15 shots, but it was having Rondo back that was the story. He played 34 minutes, scored four points and ` out eight assists, but just his presence commandeering the Celtics was a huge difference.

With Rondo, there's a different level of execution. The spacing is terrific and the team plays just with a looser, more confident feel to it.

Getting Kevin Garnett back is the next goal, but just having Rondo on the floor again is nice for Boston.

MAVS BEAT CAVS

For Cleveland, that's 17 out of 18 in the loss column. For the Mavericks, it's now one out of four without Dirk Nowitzki. I just thought that was worth pointing out. Plus I wanted to say "Mavs beat Cavs."

PORTLAND GETS A LEG UP

In a battle for the now-getting-more-and-more-interesti
ng eight-seed spot, the Trail Blazers took down the Rockets behind a big game from Nicolas Batum and LaMarcus Aldridge.

Even without Brandon Roy when the Blazers play in the open floor the way they did, they look like a capable playoff team. They always defend, they always rebound, but it's the offensive execution where sometimes they lack. But against the Rockets, everything was on point especially when the Blazers ran.

Houston has been coming on strong lately, and a team Portland will likely be fighting with for months to come. It's not a statement so much as it's a leg up on the nearest competition. The Blazers are potentially good enough to solidify themselves as an eight-seed or higher contender despite injuries, but winning games against the direct competition is key.

Paul Pierce SMASHY

Blake Griffin had himself another stellar finish yesterday, but Paul Pierce gets the dunk award for the day with this Griffinesque cram.


PARTING THOUGHT

The Clippers did a very Clipper thing by blowing a late lead over the Hawks by surrendering 37 fourth quarter points. This Clipper team has some really nice pieces. But they're obviously one of those young groups that isn't exactly sure how to win or finish. They keep reminding me of the Thunder from two years ago. Clearly talented but just not ready to win consistently. Patience is key here, but I think by April, we're going to have reason to be impressed.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com