Tag:Royce Young
Posted on: February 6, 2012 2:16 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2012 2:25 pm

Jeremy Lin to start for Knicks Monday

Lin will get the start tonight for the Knicks against the Jazz. (Getty Images)
Posted by Royce Young

Let the Lin Mania begin in the Big Apple.

After searching frantically for an answer at point guard the first quarter of the season, the Knicks are trying another solution: Jeremy Lin.

Lin exploded for 25 points and seven assists in a New York win Saturday, and now has been named the starting point guard for the Knicks' game Monday against the Jazz. It could just be temporary as Baron Davis is still seven to 10 days away from being back from herniated disks. But for now, the Knicks are all Lin's.

The New York Post has details on why Mike D'Antoni made this move now:
D’Antoni said Lin’s defense in Saturday night’s breakthrough performance against the Nets was a big factor in making the move vs. Utah and not waiting.

D’Antoni also said he feels it’s less pressure on Lin to start than come off the bench, where he’d likely receive a huge ovation and hear fans chanting of his name. Lin, the new Madison Square Garden folk hero, is coming off a 25-point, seven-assist performance off the bench Saturday in which the crowd chanted “Jer-e-my!’’ across the second half.

Lin, the NBA's first Asian-American player, is incredibly popular having come to the NBA from Harvard. He started his career with the Warriors and had a brief stint with the Rockets, but seems to fit much better with the Knicks. He's an aggressive pick-and-roll point guard and that's really the kind of system the Knicks prefer to run.

The buzz around Lin can't be ignored as Madison Square Garden chanting his name late in the second half. He's given the Knicks a little shot of life and a bit of hope. Then again, I remember a similar excitement around Iman Shumpert a time ago. Which should tell you what you need to know. The Knicks are desperately looking for answers to turn this season around.

But you'll never know if Lin could be one unless he gets a shot.
Posted on: February 6, 2012 1:52 pm

Report: Clippers after J.R. Smith

Smith is said to be interested in five teams including the Knicks and Clippers. (Getty Images)
Posted by Royce Young

J.R. Smith is available to return soon from China where his sister has been trying to fight everyone. The Knicks are said to be a major contender for Smith, but according to SNY.tv, Smith is considering five teams -- the Knicks, Clippers, Lakers, Thunder and Bulls.

It sounds like so far, only two of those are considering him back as the L.A. Times reports the Clippers are interested in Smith.
The Clippers, still not done dealing after signing Kenyon Martin on Friday, will pursue guard J.R. Smith after the team he plays on in the Chinese Basketball Assn. finishes its season and he becomes eligible to play in the NBA, said a person not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.

The Clippers aren't getting enough production off the bench behind small forward Caron Butler and feel as if Smith can provide the team with a big scoring punch at the position, the person said.
One advantage the Knicks have over the Clippers is that New York can offer the pro-rated $2.5 mini-mid-level exception, while the Clippers can just give a pro-rated veteran's minimum deal. Plus, with the Knicks he could potentially move immediately into their starting five while with the Clippers he'd be battling Chauncey Billups, Randy Foye and Mo Williams for playing time.

So it seems to me that the Knicks might be the most logical place for him. Still, the Bulls reportedly coveted him before the lockout and were interested in his instant offense style of play to add some punch to their bench. Smith is likely going to want to sign with a playoff contender and will have some options ahead.
Posted on: February 6, 2012 12:30 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2012 2:19 pm

Kevin Love suspended two games for Scola stomp

Posted by Royce Young

The NBA announced Monday that Timberwolves forward Kevin Love has been suspended two games without pay for stepping on the face of Rockets forward Luis Scola Friday.

The league said Love was suspended for "driving his foot into the upper body and face" and upgraded it to a Flagrant 2 foul.

Love claimed it was an accident after the game saying, "He was kind of right there ... I have size-19 feet. He just happened to be there. I had nowhere to go. I kind of tripped up. I just had nowhere to step. It was a Heat-of-the-moment type play. He was there and it happened to be his face."

The NBA didn't see it that way though.

Love released this statement Monday after the suspension:

”I want to publicly apologize to Luis Scola and the Houston Rockets. My intention is to never hurt another player on the basketball court. I’ve always had the utmost respect for the game of basketball and all of my opponents. I also apologize to my coaches, teammates and our fans for the consequences of my actions.”

It's a blow to the Wolves who are actually in the mix for the eight-seed in the West, but every game is of major importance. Two games without their best player could be something that comes back to bite them.

Fair suspension? It's so hard to judge intent and Love claimed innocence after the play, but still, the video suggests otherwise. Stu Jackson and the league determined it was a dirty play by Love and chose to suspended him for it. Love isn't a dirty player and like he said, it was a heat-of-the-moment type of play where you just lose your mind for a second. It's easy to see why he got the suspension and honestly, not all the surprising, I guess.

The Wolves next two games are against the Kings and Grizzlies.
Posted on: February 5, 2012 5:53 pm
Edited on: February 5, 2012 5:56 pm

Scola handled Love stomping his face with class

Posted by Royce Young

No one would've held it against Luis Scola to blast Kevin Love for what may have been a cheap shot Saturday night. Whether Love meant to stomp on Scola or not, you know Scola probably didn't feel great about it.

Instead, Scola decided to handle the situation with total, impressive class saying, "I just don't care about that play. The game is over."

Scola instead only said that maybe he was bothered that the officials didn't call a foul on Love for hitting him across the arms.

Love pleaded innocence in regards to the stomp telling the Star Tribune, "He was kind of right there ... I have size-19 feet. He just happened to be there. I had nowhere to go. I kind of tripped up. I just had nowhere to step. It was a Heat-of-the-moment type play. He was there and it happened to be his face."

Love apologized to Scola after the game for the play and said the two have a good relationship. "Obviously it was nothing personal against their team," Love said. "... Nothing personal, just heat of the moment."

Maybe it was retaliation for Scola rocketing the ball off of Love's nether regions recently? Love says nope, just accidents all around.

"It happened to be his face, just like Houston, where it happened to be my groin."

The league certainly will be taking a look at the play and deciding whether or not is deserves a suspension, but in these cases, it's really hard to judge intent. Both Scola and Love seem to think it's a non-issue and something that's in the past, but the league office might be having the final word soon.
Posted on: February 5, 2012 5:02 pm

Carl Landry out 3-4 weeks with knee sprain

Posted by Royce Young

The Hornets will be without power forward Carl Landru for the next couple weeks as the team announced Sunday that Landry will miss 3-4 weeks with an MCL sprain.

The injury occured Saturday against the Pistons after a collision with Jason Maxiell in the third quarter.

Obviously in response to losing Landry, the Hornets signed forward Lance Thomas for 10 days. Thomas, a 6-8 second-year pro out of Duke, was in training camp with New Orleans and saw brief playing time in two of the Hornets' first three regular season games before being waived on Dec. 31. He spent his first pro season in the D-League.

Not a massive blow to the Hornets as the team is just 4-20 and has lost five straight. They've been without Eric Gordon for pretty much the entire season as well as center Chris Kaman who was being shopped in trade talks. Kaman has returned, but the team isn't built to win right now, which isn't the goal. It's a rebuild for the Hornets and though obviously Monty Williams and the team wish they could have Landry out there, losing him for a couple weeks isn't the end of the world.
Posted on: February 5, 2012 4:56 pm

Report: D'Antoni not in danger of losing job, yet

Posted by Royce Young

The Knicks finally broke an ugly stretch where they had lost 11 of 13 by beating the Nets behind a surprise performance from Jeremy Lin. Still, the seat coach Mike D'Antoni is sitting on isn't warm or even hot. It's seat-belt-in-the-summer-time hot. I'm surprised he's even sitting in the thing during games and not just standing.

But he's not about to be fired as of now, according to Newsday:
A league source said D'Antoni isn't in danger of losing his job. If the losing continues, however, that could change.
D'Antoni has said he's not thinking about his job and while we all obviously know that's not true, the fact is, he can't worry much about it. He's got bigger issues to figure out and in his mind, things could be looking up soon. Baron Davis might finally be able to contribute something and then there's the chance J.R. Smith or even Aaron Brooks sign with the Knicks after they are released from the contracts in China.
"It doesn't do anything for me," D'Antoni told the paper. "If I do my job well, then things will be good. If we don't win, it will happen. I'm not worried one way or another, to be honest with you. I know, it's kind of, 'Yeah, right.' That's one good thing about being 60 years old. You don't have to worry too much."
But a 9-15 record and struggling for a playoff spot was not the plan for the Knicks this season. It's unfair to pin this on D'Antoni because he's not playing with a full deck as he's without a real point guard, but still, the fact New York has had so much issue scoring doesn't reflect well on him.

He has to feel somewhat better considering the win over the Nets plus two competitive losses against the Celtics and Bulls. That's losing two out of three, which isn't acceptable, but it appeared the Knicks were moving forward. Carmelo Anthony is getting healthier, they're scoring better and there's a bit better symmetry it appears.

Still, D'Antoni isn't going to make it through the season with the Knicks playing sub-.500 basketball. That roster isn't a finished product and a good portion of the team's failures aren't on him, but someone has to pay and it's pretty much always the head coach. All D'Antoni can do to stop it from happening is win. Otherwise, he's going to have third-degree burns on his backside soon.
Posted on: February 5, 2012 4:20 pm

What NBA players are doing for the Super Bowl

Posted by Royce Young

The NBA sets up its Super Bowl Sunday schedule the way it is for a reason. A small slate of games, all played in the early afternoon. Why? For one, because who is going to watch or go to the games, but two, because like everyone other person in the world, players want to have their own Super Bowl parties.

And it sounds like if you're going to go to one, Nicolas Batum's is the place to be. Via the Basketball Jones:

Category: NBA
Posted on: February 3, 2012 1:14 pm
Edited on: February 3, 2012 3:45 pm

EOB Roundtable: Best dunks of all time

Posted by Ben GolliverMatt Moore and Royce Young

Earlier this week, Miami Heat All-Star forward LeBron James and Los Angeles Clippers All-Star forward Blake Griffin treated the NBA worlrd to two of the best dunks you'll ever see.

James completedly hurdled Chicago Bulls point guard John Lucas III to finish a one-handed alley-oop pass from Heat guard Dwyane Wade. Griffin flew up and over Oklahoma City Thunder center Kendrick Perkins to throw down one of his power/speed/brute force specialties.

That got the CBSSports.com Eye on Basketball Staff thinking: What are the best dunks of all time? We kicked it around in a panel discussion.

Matt Moore:

So Griffin's abject demolition of Perkins and his dignity has set off a huge discussion of dunks this week. The big debate of course is how this one stacks up against Vince Carter over Frederic Weis. (Via YouTube user Supra2K8)

Everyone keeps coming back to the fact that he cleared a seven footer, which is obviously impressive. But for me, there are a number of things that make Griffin's RIPerkins better. Most importantly, Weis was trying to take the charge. Carter clears him (kind of, with some manipulation of Weis' head with his hand between his legs), but Weis isn't defending. On the other hand, Perkins is full-on trying to block, and if not block, foul Griffin. The dunk is a monumental clash of an elite shot challenger and the offensive player driving straight through his soul.

I always think a dunk being completed through a challenge is better than just dunking over a tall dude. If I wanted props I'd go to the dunk contest. That's why I tend to like this one as my second favorite of all time. (Via YouTube user DJNajeem)  

I mean, come on, now. That's Anderson Varejao, an annual defensive player of the year candidate. Weis was a fine defender... but not at the NBA level. I'd still put Carter as the best dunker of all time (in-game, dunk contest, your mom's house, anywhere). But Griffin's abject annihilation of Perkins has to be considered the best. In a related story, Amar'e Stoudemire over Anthony Tolliver. (Via YouTube user TheBrosBros

Royce Young:

You know what dunk gets criminally overlooked? J.R. Smith's two-handed "We just saw a man fly!" finish over Gary Neal. Three things that make that dunk amazing: 1) It was with two hands 2) It was darn near a buzzer beater and 3) Kevin Harlan's call. (Via YouTube user Huff99)

See, I think that's the type of stuff that can distinguish one great dunk from another -- the little things. Because all dunks over someone are pretty incredible when you think about it. But the details like how good the call of it was, how the ball went through the net (was it a splashing flush or did it rattle in, like Griffin's?), who it was over, the significance of it and stuff like that.  On that, you've got to have Pippen's destruction over Patrick Ewing. It has all of the above. Great call, major significance and it was over a seven-footer. For my money, it's the best ever. I mean, that's a total humiliation of Ewing. Pippen took Ewing's manhood and disrespect his family tree. He didn't just dunk over Ewing, he dunked through him. (Via YouTube user Funk2Dunk)

One more that I have to mention is LeBron's over Kevin Garnett in the 2008 playoffs. "With no regard for human life!" might be the all-time best dunk call. And it was over KG, which is big time. (Via YouTube user Marszall87)
Ben Golliver:

Reading your responses, I basically was just nodding continuously. I guess I'm not wired for the "Best Dunk" debate. I approach YouTube more like a wine collector approaches his cellar: collect all the greats, then keep collecting, then collect some more and then collect even more. I care more about experiencing all the greats than about ranking the cream of the crop.

Similarly, I'm partial to the classics. The first one that comes to mind when I think of a dunk is Michael Jordan over Ewing.(Via YouTube User ESPN)

This one just wraps up Jordan the offensive weapon so perfectly. Incredible handle, vision, instincts, quickness, power, fearlessness and total authority. The physicality at the end is just icing on a flawless cake.

You probably guessed that Julius Erving's cradle dunk over Michael Cooper would be next on my list. (Via YouTube user diegoris23)

It didn't quite have the man-on-man violence of some of these other dunks but the beauty is in how natural and in-the-flow this one came about. It was as if Dr. J was just walking down the street, saw a basketball lying on the ground, didn't even stop to bend over and picked it up, scooped it in rhythm and then tossed it on a very good defender's head in one brilliant, swooping motion. Iconic.

Last but not least, I think Kevin Durant's dunk over Brendan Haywood during the 2011 Playoffs will wind up standing up to the test of time. It's more recent than my other two picks but I predict massive staying powero on this one. (Via YouTube user NBA).

I see this as a future classic because Durant is on track for true greatness and because this dunk shows his amazing length, probably his most obvious stand out physical attribute. It shows his handle, his hops and his swagger. This will be the dunk that Durant enthusiasts point to in 30 years when detractors try to argue that Durant was "just a shooter" or that his slim frame held him back him from becoming a top-20 type of player. The extension on this one was amazing. The replays just make it better and better.
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com