Play Fantasy Use your Fantasy skills to win Cash Prizes. Join or start a league today. Play Now
 
Tag:San Antonio Spurs
Posted on: January 26, 2011 6:23 pm
Edited on: January 26, 2011 6:24 pm
 

Poor Coach Popovich has to coach the All-Stars


Posted by Matt Moore

You know who has two thumbs and doesn't give a crap about the All-Star game?




This guy. 

Unfortunately, for Pop, he'll be coaching the All-Star Game after his team locked up the best record in the West at the deadline. From the San Antonio News-Express
Monday’s victory at Golden State ensured the Spurs will have the Western Conference’s top record by the Feb. 6 deadline to select All-Star coaches, meaning Popovich will be drafted into working the Feb. 20 midseason extravaganza in Los Angeles.

It marks the second All-Star nod for Popovich, who also coached the 2005 West squad. He is 0-1, having lost to the East that year 125-115.

Nobody seems giddier at the prospect of seeing Popovich prowl the Staples Center sideline than Spurs star Tim Duncan.“He’s been talking all season about how he wants to make sure he gets that position,” Duncan said, with tongue planted in cheek.“I think he’s really excited about it.”

So far, Popovich is saying all the right things, calling his All-Star selection, “a great honor.”
via Spurs Nation » Popovich gets seat on All-Star bench.

Somehow you have to think if you ask him about going to the dentist he'd call it "a great honor." Since he probably has as much enthusiasm. Popovich isn't one for platitudes or pageantry, which is most of what the All-Star game is. There's not only no concerted need to effort towards victory, there's a distinct demand to avoid contact in order to prevent injury. It's pretty much the opposite of what Popovich likes to teach, like to preach, what he brings to his team. And with Duncan only a slight favorite to make the team out of respect, and both Parker and Ginobili longshots, he won't even be coaching his guys. Not that there's much coaching to be done. 

Can't you imagine Popovich walking into practice on Saturday morning, waiting till the press leaves, sitting down, opening a paper, and waving his hand dismissively. "Shoot, or whatever." 

But hey, I'm sure the gift bags are nice, and the wine selection's probably killer out there. 
(HT: Basketball Jones)
Posted on: January 17, 2011 12:31 pm
Edited on: January 17, 2011 12:45 pm
 

Game Changer: Clippers top Lakers in LA

The Los Angeles Clippers defeated the Los Angeles Lakers in the battle for LA and the San Antonio Spurs easily handled the Denver Nuggets at home. Posted by Ben Golliver.

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: YOU WILL BEND TO Blake Griffin 

Los Angeles Clippers rookie Blake Griffin is not only phenomenally athletic, he plays the role of "rookie that doesn't care about your veteran way of doing things" absolutely perfectly. 

Griffin's Clippers defeated the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday, and while it certainly wasn't Griffin's most efficient night, he left his stamp on the game in the closing seconds.

With a comfortable lead and the win virtually secured, Griffin continued to battle hard underneath the glass during a free throw attempt, prompting Lakers forward Lamar Odom to swing him by the jersey for his perceived unnecessary hustle and physical play. The two forwards had a staredown which resulted in four players being ejected (video here) and the Lakers left a little salty at Griffin's lack of decorum in a situation that happens hundreds of times over a long NBA career.

Will Griffin still chase every rebounding attempt with absolute ferocity when he's Odom's age? Possibly not, but it's not out of the question. Sunday's exchange was simply proof that when it comes to "motor" -- that all-purpose scouting term that combines hustle, energy level, activity and desire -- Griffin, even as a rookie, rocks the most cylinders and has the most horsepower. 

Not only does he go hard, though, Griffin has shown in recent games that, despite being soft-spoken and even-keeled off the court, he excels in the macho on-court NBA climate of punking and trashtalking. He's been delivering stares after dunks for months now, but his success as a rookie has made him a target of mental attacks from his opponents. Against the Miami Heat last week, Griffin responded to some trash-talking by throwing down a ridiculous double-pump dunk and then letting the Heat know about it. Here, against the Lakers, Griffin holds his ground as his teammates comically come to his defense, as if anyone was really going to mess with Griffin one-on-one, face-to-face.  

Griffin is still finding his way in the league, as demonstrated by Portland Trail Blazers point guard Andre Miller body-slamming him in retaliation for some rebounding skirmishes. But Griffin's message to the rest of the NBA has become clear and consistent: you guys will adjust to me and my talent, not the other way around. 

So far it's working out pretty well for him.

GO-GO-GADGET LINES OF THE NIGHT:


Tony Parker: 30 points, seven rebounds, four assists, two steals on 11-15 shooting in 32 minutes in a San Antonio Spurs home victory over the Denver Nuggets.

Blake Griffin: 18 points, 15 rebounds, three assists in 38 minutes in a Los Angeles Clippers home victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.

Andrew Bynum: 18 points, 13 rebounds, three blocks on 7-11 shooting in 32 minutes in a Los Angeles Lakers road victory over the Los Angeles Clippers.

DON'T MISS:

WHIMSY:

Los Angeles Clippers center DeAndre Jordan serves as a spotter as his teammate does a pre-game handstand.   clippers-handstand

HIGHLIGHT REEL PART ONE:

J.R. Smith is the best in-game dunker in the NBA (only LeBron James comes close). One of the reasons why: Smith doesn't care at all about time/score situations. Even in blowouts, he's looking to put you on a poster. Here, down big against the San Antonio Spurs, Smith rises up and over Spurs big man Tiago Splitter for a nasty one-handed dunk.


HIGHLIGHT REEL PART TWO:

Here's Splitter's attempt at revenge, a two-handed dunk in transition that was completely unnecessary because the clock was set to run out. Splitter violated the NBA rule of "no unnecessary shooting if the opposition agrees not to foul or play defense" and karma got the best of him. Splitter went crashing to the floor after the uncontested dunk attempt, landing hard on his backside. The good news: no injury was sustained during the course of this blooper.


FINAL THOUGHT:

The Carmelo Anthony saga is driving everyone a little nuts, but leave it to his Nuggets teammate J.R. Smith to find a funny side. Quoted by NBA.com, Smith said the Nuggets give Anthony some grief: "We ask him, 'What are you gonna look like in a Nets uniform?,' How cold it's going to be out there. What (city) he's gonna end up in? He could be playing for some team in Alaska."
Posted on: January 17, 2011 9:01 am
 

Shootaround 1.17.11: Salute, MLK

Posted by Royce Young
  • Ken Berger has some great new insight and info on the Melodrama: "The best move now? That would be for Anthony to inform Ujiri and Kroenke to cool it with the trade talks -- and that he will wait until the end of the season to address the extension. Under the current rules, Anthony can re-sign with the Nuggets any time before July 1. Once the season is over, Anthony could be moved in an extend-and-trade all the way up to July 1, as well."
  • Gregg Popovich said James Anderson will return in Austin: "This coming week, he's going to be going one-on-one, two-on-two, three-on-three, that kind of thing, so he'll have his first contact. The end of the week, or some time the following week, he'll go down to the D-League to play for a while, so he's a couple of weeks away from coming back to us, probably towards the end of the month."
  • Otis Smith is a little worried about Dwight Howard's option: "I'd be crazy if I didn't. Of course. At end of day, I think he wants to stay here and wants to win here. But with so many marquee guys moving, it's kind of hard for me not to have any angst about it."
Posted on: January 10, 2011 8:09 pm
 

Video: Fantasy hoops waiver wire pickup picks

CBSSports.com is back with another episode of fantasy hoops analysis, focusing this week on who you might pick up off of the waiver wire. Posted by Ben Golliver.

CBSSports.com's Sergio Gonzalez is the go-to guy for fantasy hoops advice. This week, in an interview with Lauren Shehadi, Gonzalez lists which centers or center-eligible big men might be available on your league's waiver wire and should be considered for a pick up. Just click here or watch the video below.



Gonzalez listed Denver Pistons big man Greg Monroe, Sacramento Kings big man Jason Thompson, Phoenix Suns big man Marcin Gortat, San Antonio Spurs big man DeJuan Blair

Also this week, Gonzalez and Shehadi break down who you should start and sit in your fantasy lineups
Posted on: January 6, 2011 12:06 pm
Edited on: January 6, 2011 8:09 pm
 

The Game Changer: Celtics survive meltdown

The Boston Celtics escaped from the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday night, Kevin Martin put up an absurd shooting performance against the Portland Trail Blazers, Blake Griffin dunked and dunked and dunked, and Birdman's tattoos got spotted up close. Posted by Ben Golliver.

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: CELTICS ESCAPE FROM SPURS

The last few minutes in Boston were beautiful chaos, as the unexpected kept happening in a wild finish between two of the league's premier teams: the Celtics and the San Antonio Spurs. When the dust settled, the Celtics held on for a 105-103 victory, but it wasn't without fireworks.

The Spurs, down nine points late, mounted a furious, and somewhat lucky, comeback thanks to a Manu Ginobili three, a Tony Parker steal-to-layup finish and two Richard Jefferson free throws. Up two with the ball, the Celtics ran the clock, turning the ball over to their late-game savant, Paul Pierce.

Pierce missed the game-icer, but the smallest guy on the court, Celtics guard Nate Robinson, not only came out with the rebound but intelligently shuffled it to Ray Allen, one of the league's premier foul shooters. With less than 10 seconds left on the clock, the Spurs were forced to foul Allen, a career 89.4% free throw shooter, who inexplicably missed both free throws that also would have iced it.

Matt Bonner then secured the defensive rebound for the Spurs, who quickly took timeout to diagram a final, potentially game-winning play. Everyone in the building knew it was going to Manu Ginobili, who had multiple game-winning plays in December, and that included Pierce, who expertly contested a Ginobili jumper at the buzzer, blocking it cleanly without fouling. Rajon Rondo, who finished with an absurd triple-double (see below) then did his best Magic Johnson impersonation, tossing the ball high in the air to burn out the rest of the clock. Ballgame, Celtics.

The result was a little evidence supporting a conclusion made by Celtics center Kendrick Perkins: it will be extremely difficult to beat this group in a seven-game series. Even without Perkins and starting power forward Kevin Garnett, the Celtics managed to make multiple heady, playoff-type plays while in the process of throwing a game away. Robinson's rebound and dish, Pierce's defense and Rondo's clock killing are the kind of time/score plays that come naturally to a tested team, but pretenders always seem to mess up. 

Wednesday night's madness is worth another look. Here's a nice video breakdown, courtesy of NBAHiighlights on YouTube.



GO-GO-GADGET LINES OF THE NIGHT:


Rajon Rondo: 12 points, 10 rebounds, 22 assists, six steals, one block in 44 minutes in a Boston Celtics home win over the San Antonio Spurs.

Kevin Martin: 45 points, two rebounds, four assists on 13-18 shooting, 6-8 three-point shooting, 13-15 free throw shooting in 39 minutes in a Houston Rockets home lose to the Portland Trail Blazers.

Dwight Howard: 28 points, 13 rebounds, three assists, two steals, one block in 43 minutes in an Orlando Magic home win over the Milwaukee Bucks.

Kevin Love: 35 points, 15 rebounds, five assists in 45 minutes in a Minnesota Timberolves overtime loss on the road to the Charlotte Bobcats.

Jose Calderon: 20 points, three rebounds, 17 assists, two steals in 38 minutes in a Toronto Raptors road win over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

DON'T MISS:

WATCH OUT BELOW:

Four Denver Nuggets defenders try as hard as possible to avoid being in another Blake Griffin poster, but they fail. 

blake-griffin-dunk

WHIMSY:

Stephen Dunn, a Getty Images, got a great snap of Chris "Birdman" Andersen's tattooed leg.

birdman-leg

HIGHLIGHT REEL:

We're getting used to Blake Griffin throwing down, but this one-handed tomahawk alley oop jam after leading a 2-on-1 break with Clippers point guard Baron Davis was pretty filthy. And the fact that the break was started by DeAndre Jordan, who apparently blocked a shot with his elbow, is even better.



FINAL THOUGHT:

Since these posts continue to turn into all Blake Griffin all the time, here's Griffin talking about being selected for the NBA's Slam Dunk contest, as quoted by TheRookieWall.com. “I think I’m just gonna try and get up as high as possible and throw it down as hard as possible. You know, put a little show in there, put a little pizazz and see what we can come out with. Hopefully I’ll have the home court advantage, but I don’t know, we got a lot of good guys in there so I’m definitely going to try to play into that a little bit. I’ve got a few things up my sleeve. I’m not showing them yet.”
Posted on: January 6, 2011 9:04 am
 

Shootaround 1.6.11: Executed

Posted by Royce Young
  • 48 Minutes of Hell on how the San Antonio imploded: "However, this comedy of errors was far from complete. After Manu Ginobili hit a quick three-pointer, the ever-poised Paul Pierce coughed up a quick turnover, as did Nate Robinson on the following play and, after Richard Jefferson calmly sunk two free throws, the Spurs found themselves down by two with 33 seconds left. What had appeared, if not impossible, than highly unlikely, came to pass: All the Spurs needed to do was play solid defense (a tall order as of late), secure the rebound and they’d have a shot to tie or win the game."
  • Samuel Dalembert opens up to the Sacramento Bee: "They have to let me know which direction they want to go. They know what I do best. I block shots, rebound, get us in the fast break. Am I going to play the next five years in a place that is a contender, or am I going to be here, helping this team get better? It's up to them. But I am not going to lie. This is very frustrating."
  • Breene Murphy of ClipperBlog on the win over Denver: "But for now, Clippers fans should enjoy the solace of the win over the Nuggets. The two games prior showed that the Clippers are not going to make constant improvements, there will be setbacks against good teams, but they are learning enough where they can continue to bounce back and show very real progress."
  • Rajon Rondo is back. CelticsHub: "Now that you’re really back, we recognize our own team again. Which makes us realize that the only thing that really distinguishes the Celtics on offense is how you make them go. Celtics basketball is half a myth, basically, because it doesn’t fully manifest itself without you on the floor. You were supernaturally aware of where the ball was going to be tonight. Like the moment when you held out your hand and the ball spontaneously appeared in it:"
Posted on: January 5, 2011 12:56 pm
 

The Game Changer: Knicks outgun the Spurs

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: SAN ANTONIO CAN'T RUN WITH NEW YORK

The Knicks have had quite a turnaround early in this season. However, the major qualm is that they're beating up on average and bad teams, but aren't good enough to actually beat a good team.

Well, you can cross that one off now.

The Knicks completely outran the league's best team with a 128-115 win over the Spurs at Madison Square Garden. The Knicks shot nearly 55 percent from the field and got 31 points from Wilson Chandler, 28 from Amar'e Stoudemire and 28 from Raymond Felton as they pulled away late.

The Spurs have ramped up pace and tempo this season, playing faster than ever. And it's been a large part of their success. But it didn't work against the team that actually lives by running. The Spurs just couldn't keep up and after the game got into an up-and-down flow, they couldn't slow it down and get it into a style they liked. San Antonio tried to grind it out in the fourth, but the Knicks were still running.

One curious move was Gregg Popovich sitting his starters down with three minutes left, only down 10. With a game tonight against the Celtics, I'm sure Coach Pop wanted a little extra rest for his guys and with the way the Knicks were running, his team of veterans were probably gassed. Still a bit curious though, especially considering the 3-point shooters San Antonio has. A 3, a stop and a bucket and it's a five-point game with lots of time left.

Regardless of that, this is New York's biggest win of the season and finally something the Knicks can point to and say, "See! We're good!" Not that they need that validation because their quality record says enough, but any time you beat the league's best team, it helps in every way.

GO-GO-GADGET LINES

Zach Randolph put up a monster double-double, going for 31 points and 16 rebounds against the Thunder.

Marcus Camby had 10 points and 20 rebounds in a loss to Dallas.

Jamal Crawford notched a season-high 31 points and added seven assists in Atlanta's win over Sacramento.

Wilson Chandler deserves a mention with his season-high 31 points against San Antonio.

MIAMI ROLLS AGAIN

I feel like it the season started in December, then yeah, we probably could've started talking about 72 wins for the Heat. Because they are rolling right now.

With their win over the Bucks, that makes 19 of 20 for Miami and most of those have come in impressive fashion. Dwyane Wade notched another big night, dropping 34 as LeBron dished out nine assists. Really, everything is working according to plan right now. Miami has scoring when it needs it. The Heat have defense all the time. And playmakers are all over the floor.

Sometimes, it's honestly a little tough to see how someone can beat them. But the thing about the Heat is that they make themselves vulnerable at times. They lapse, get selfish and don't play defense. It's the reason they've lost nine times.

But lately, everything has been working according to plan. To win 19 of 20 is pretty good, especially because that meant beating some solid teams.

Tony Allen: GOOD AT PUNCHING, BAD AT LAYUPS

The next time O.J. Mayo and Tony Allen get into it, Mayo's got some ammunition to at least make fun of him with. On a solo fast break, Allen streaked toward the rim with his tongue hanging out like he was going to finish big. Instead, he blew the layup. This was actually one of four layups Allen missed on the night. He did finish with 19 points though and hit two crucial 3s.


Lakers VENT A LITTLE, THIS TIME AGAINST THE COMPETITION

Instead of yelling at each other, the Lakers started doing it to their opponent, beating down the Pistons 108-83. It was a blowout so that stats are a bit skewed, but Kobe Bryant only attempted 18 shots as Pau Gasol went for 21 points and Lamar Odom added 16. That's the Laker formula we've seen work this season.

Kobe went just 6-18 from the floor, but had eight assists and grabbed seven rebounds. So maybe there was something to Phil Jackson's critique of his recent play and Bryant came out looking to be more unselfish. He set teammates up and looked a bit passive at times. He didn't have his shot going again, so he let his cast of very talented characters bring him through.

PARTING THOUGHT

In Oklahoma City's 110-105 loss to Memphis, Jeff Green registered zero rebounds in 42 minutes of play. That's only the third time since 1986 a power forward has had that happen. The other two were Cliff Robinson and Pat Garrity. Not exactly wonderful company to be in.
Posted on: January 4, 2011 11:04 pm
Edited on: January 4, 2011 11:31 pm
 

Bizarre coaching events abound

Strange coaching occurrences in New York, Miami.
Posted by Matt Moore


Two strange pieces of coaching news occurred in the NBA Tuesday night, one in Miami where two techs does not equal an ejection, and one in New York, where the fat lady didn't sing, but it was over anyway apparently.

The Heat came back from a halftime deficit, again, to beat the Bucks 101-89. Scott Skiles was whistled for your run of the mill technical foul for getting all Skiles-like on the sideline in the first half. In the second half, Skiles accidentally made contact with a player on the floor, earning him a second technical. So two techs equals an automatic ejection, right? Except the officials ruled that the second technical was not on account of "unsportsmanlike conduct" which is requisite for an ejection, and therefore Skiles got to stay. Very strange all around. Not as strange as the continuing collapse of the Bucks after such a great 2010 season, but still pretty odd.

Even more bizarre, however, was Gregg Popovich's decision to pull his starters with 3:13 remaining in the 4th down by only 10 to the Knicks. The Spurs' defense was horrific all night to be sure, allowing over 100 points in three-quarters. But the Spurs were still hanging in a very Spurs way, when suddenly, apparently Popovich had seen enough from his team and pulled Manu Ginobili, Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Richard Jefferson. The Spurs' offense featured Chris Quinn, Gary Neal, and Ime Udoka down the stretch. In shocking news, the Knicks hung on over that mighty lineup, 128-115 .

Some speculated that Popovich was merely resting his starters for Wednesday night's game against the Boston Celtics.  But judging from the behavior of Manu and Parker on the sideline, Pop was making a point. I guess at 29-45, Pop felt he could spare a win in order to make a point. Either way, New York managed to hold on against a playoff contender at home.

In other news, Kevin Durant missed a three-pointer to tie, the lion laid down with the lamb, and a bad moon is rising. Run for your lives!
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com