LA Lakers - Sacramento K. 103-90 The Los Angeles Lakers already have more wins under Bernie Bickerstaff than they did with Mike Brown at the helm this season. With rumors swirling that Phil Jackson could return to the team with whom he won five of his 11 NBA titles with, Dwight Howard (6'11''-C-85) tallied 23 points and 18 rebounds in the Lakers' 103-90 rout of the Sacramento Kings. Brown was 1-4 when he was relieved of his duties Friday and Los Angeles is 2-0 under its interim coach Bickerstaff. Kobe Bryant had 20 points, while Metta World Peace and Pau Gasol chipped in 18 points apiece for the Lakers, who have won three of four since beginning the year with three straight losses. Jason Thompson (6'11''-F-86, college: Rider) had 15 points and 10 boards for Sacramento, which has dropped two in a row. Courtesy of:www.sacbee.com
Oklah.City T. - Cleveland C. 106-91 The Cleveland Cavaliers dropped their third straight game Sunday night as they fell to the Oklahoma City Thunder, 106-91. Kyrie Irving led the way for the Cavaliers in the losing effort, scoring 20 points and adding four rebounds, five assists and one steal. Alonzo Gee (6'6''-G-87, college: Alabama) scored 18 points and Tristan Thompson tallied 10 rebounds. Rookie Dion Waiters had eight points and four rebounds in 21 minutes of action. Russell Westbrook (6'3''-PG-88, college: UCLA) was the leading scorer for the Thunder with 27 points, adding 10 assists and six rebounds, while overcoming eight turnovers. Kevin Durant (6'9''-SF-88, college: Texas) added 26 points of his own in the win. Serge Ibaka anchored the Thunder on the defensive end with seven rebounds and seven blocks. The Cavaliers are now 2-5 on the season and 1-4 on their current road trip. They wrap up their trip Tuesday against the Brooklyn Nets before heading home to play the Dallas Mavericks on Saturday. Courtesy of: http://cleveland.sbnation.com
Memphis G. - Miami Heat 104-86 MEMPHIS -- The plan going in was to limit the Grizzlies' bears in the middle, Zach Randolph (6'9''-C-81, college: Michigan St.) and Marc Gasol (7'1''-C-85, agency: Interperformances). No one, it seemed, thought about accounting for Wayne Ellington (6'4''-G-87, college: N.Carolina). On a night filled with many errors by the Heat, that was the biggest one. Ellington, the Grizzlies' reserve guard from North Carolina, scored a career-high 25 points in the Heat's 104-86 loss to Memphis on Sunday at FedEx Forum. The Grizzlies made 14 three-pointers and Ellington had half of them, going 7 of 11 from distance and 8 of 13 overall. In its two losses this season - both blowouts - the Heat's defense has yielded 33 three-pointers on 60 attempts. 'We came into the game really aware of their interior game,' Heat forward Shane Battier said. 'They lead the league in points in the paint and rim shots and so we really, really focused on that and probably were not as focused on their shooters.' 'We wanted to compact the lane and we were willing to live with some of the jumpers but they got hot and we couldn't slow them down,' Battier said. While the Heat (5-2) held its own in the paint, Battier (five points and four fouls) was overwhelmed inside by the Grizzlies' size and played just 16 minutes. His absence contributed to a lack of defensive rhythm early and Miami never recovered. The Grizzlies used three big runs - one at the end of the first half (14-1), another in the third quarter (11-0) and the final uppercut in the fourth quarter (16-1) - to knockout the defending champs. 'We didn't make shots and they made shots,' said LeBron James, who had 20 points, 10 rebounds and six assists. 'They made 14 threes and our game plan coming into the game was protect the paint. They're a great paint-scoring team and they were, like, close to last in three-pointers made and three-pointers attempted per game. But we paid for it today.' Bombs away Ellington started the second quarter with his first three-pointer of the game and then nailed two more in succession to give the Grizzlies a 40-34 lead. His fourth three-pointer of the period came amid Memphis' 14-1 run to end the half. Ellington's seven three-pointers was the most by a member of the Grizzlies since April 6, 2008, when Mike Miller had eight at Minnesota. 'It's a great feeling,' Ellington said. 'You get in that zone where you feel like you can't miss. That's the kind of night it was for me tonight.' Maybe this is the season the Grizzlies break through in the Western Conference and make a deep run in the playoffs. On Sunday, they certainly seemed ready. Memphis' 5-1 start to the season is its best in franchise history. Limiting Randolph and Gasol inside was the Heat's plan but the frontcourt players ended with double-digit totals in rebounds. Randolph had 18 points and 12 rebounds while Gasol had four points and 10 rebounds. Still, the rebounding battle ended even, 43-43, and the Heat outscored the Grizzlies in the paint 42-40. The Heat also accomplished its objective of getting to the free-throw line. Once there, however, the team struggled. Miami was 22 of 36 from the line with James missing all four of his attempts. 'If you would have told me before the game that we would out free-throw them by 20 and out-paint them, sure I thought we would have a chance to win at the end,' Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. But, in the end, Spoelstra threw in the towel with 4:37 left in the game. The Heat trailed by 22 points when the Heat's coach subbed out James, Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade and Ray Allen. Miami trailed 82-75 with 8:34 left when the Grizzlies went on its 16-1 run. Ellington had a pair of three-pointers during the burst, Rudy Gay offered a massive dunk through the heart of the Heat's defense and Quincy Pondexter (6'6''-F-88, college: Washington) and Mike Conley finished it off with two more threes. Tough game Gay had an active stat line, shooting 7 of 17 from the field for 21 points to go along with eight rebounds, five assists, four steals and two blocked shots. It was Gay who defeated the Heat two seasons ago at FedEx Forum with a buzzer beater over James but no late-game heroics were needed on this night. Wade had an off game, going 3 of 15 from the field for eight points and eight rebounds. Allen had five points on 2 of 7 shooting in 26 minutes. Mario Chalmers played just 24 minutes and had five points and three assists. Chalmers' counterpart, Conley, had 18 points and nine assists in 32 minutes. The Heat finished with 18 assists and 13 turnovers. It was the first time in four games an opponent held the Heat to fewer than 20 assists. Courtesy of:www.miamiherald.com
LA Clippers - Atlanta H. 89-76 Blake Griffin scored 16 points, Chris Paul had 15 points and eight assists and the Los Angeles Clippers beat the Atlanta Hawks 89-76 on Sunday. Jamal Crawford, who won the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year award in 2010 while playing for Atlanta, had 11 points after coming in with a team-high 21.8 average _ tops among the league's reserves. Fifth-year center DeAndre Jordan, coming off the first back-to-back 20-point games of his NBA career, finished with eight points. Josh Smith had a team-high 13 points for the Hawks, who shot 41.7 percent from the field in the opener of a four-game road trip. Atlanta also committed 22 turnovers that were converted into 24 Clippers points. Coming off consecutive victories over the Lakers and San Antonio, the Clippers took a 65-60 lead into the fourth. Neither team led by more than six until Matt Barnes stole the ball from Ivan Johnson and raced down the floor for a breakaway dunk that gave Los Angeles a 70-62 lead with 10:10 remaining. Lou Williams hit a short jumper at the other end, but the Clippers responded with 15-1 run led by Crawford, Eric Bledsoe and Barnes to build an 85-65 cushion with 3:49 to play. Barnes converted a dunk and a layup on fast breaks after turnovers by Smith, as the Hawks coughed up the ball 10 times in the final quarter while going almost 6 minutes without a field goal. To make matters worse, they missed nine of 16 free-throw attempts in the game. The Clippers, who tied a franchise record by scoring 100 or more points in six straight games to start the season, led 39-37 at halftime. Paul eluded Jeff Teague with a slick crossover dribble at the free-throw line and drove the lane for an uncontested layup that gave them a 35-32 lead with 2:41 left in the second quarter. NOTES: Backup center Ryan Hollins picked up three fouls in a 4 1/2-minute span and returned to the Clippers' bench with 10:06 left in the first half. ... Shaquille O'Neal watched the game from a front-row seat at midcourt with his daughter Amira, but he said he wasn't sticking around for the Lakers-Sacramento game that followed. During Thursday night's TNT coverage of the Clippers' game at Portland, O'Neal said he thought Jordan was the best center in the Western Conference _ Dwight Howard notwithstanding. ... The Clippers have two days off before hosting Miami on Wednesday night. Since moving to Los Angeles for the 1984-85 campaign, they are 18-68 against teams that won an NBA title the previous season. ... Longtime Clippers publicist Rob Raichlen is leaving the organization following Wednesday's game to take a job with Mattel and spent more time with his family. ... Saturday marked exactly 42 years since the first meeting between these two franchises, when the Hawks lost 134-118 to the expansion Buffalo Braves. Bob Kauffman had 35 points for the Braves, who held rookie phenom "Pistol" Pete Maravich to 16. Courtesy of: trib.com
Brooklyn N. - Orlando M. 82-74 NEW YORK, N.Y. - Brook Lopez (7'0''-C/F-88, college: Stanford) scored 20 points, Kris Humphries added 14 points and 21 rebounds, and the Brooklyn Nets beat the Orlando Magic 82-74 on Sunday to complete a home-and-home sweep. Deron Williams finished with 17 points, seven rebounds, seven assists and a couple key plays down the stretch after what once appeared to be another blowout turned into a close game. The Nets beat the Magic 107-68 at Orlando on Friday and jumped out to an early 20-point lead in this one. But after losing a 22-point lead at home against Minnesota on Monday, Brooklyn almost coughed up another huge cushion, letting Orlando get within five in the final 2 minutes. Glen Davis (6'9''-F-86, college: LSU) had 19 points and 10 rebounds for the Magic, who have dropped four in a row after opening with two wins in their first season since trading Dwight Howard. Aaron Afflalo also scored 19 for the Magic, who won their last five games against the Nets in New Jersey but so far don't match up against the rebranded team in Brooklyn. Playing without Jameer Nelson (right hamstring), Al Harrington (6'9''-F-80) (right knee) and Hedo Turkoglu (broken left hand), they simply don't have enough offence, coming into the game ranked 26th in the NBA with 90.6 points per game. They couldn't even get 20 points in the first seven quarters against the Nets, then managed 21 in the final period of this one. Joe Johnson scored 13 for the Nets, who are still without starting forward Gerald Wallace, who hasn't played since spraining his left ankle in the season opener. That didn't matter Friday, and sure didn't look like it would early Sunday. A 14-2 run gave the Nets a 19-8 lead, and when Orlando got within seven late in the first quarter, Brooklyn scored the final 11 points, highlighted by C.J. Watson's six points in 4 seconds. He made a 3-pointer, then stole the inbounds pass and drew a foul while making a layup. Reggie Evans' free throws made it 35-17 headed to the second. Andray Blatche's basket to open the second made it a 20-point game, but Afflalo had a pair of three-point plays in a 12-2 surge that cut the lead in half. Brooklyn recovered and went into the half leading 50-35. The Magic then outscored the Nets 18-13 in a tough-to-watch third quarter in which the teams combined to shoot 12 for 34, and cut it all the way to 75-70 on Davis' basket with 2:07 remaining in the game. Williams answered with a jumper, and after another basket by Davis, he found Lopez inside for a 79-72 advantage with 59 seconds to play. He added a free throw to push it to eight and the Nets were safe from there. Orlando finished 1 of 12 from 3-point range. NOTES: Magic coach Jacque Vaughn spent two years with the Nets from 2004-06. ... Jerry Stackhouse (6'6''-G-74, college: N.Carolina), 38, finished with five points after scoring 11 on Friday in his Nets debut after sitting out the first three games. ... Reserve MarShon Brooks (sprained left ankle) also was sidelined for the Nets. Coach Avery Johnson said he wanted to see both Wallace and Brooks go through a practice before they could return. ... The Magic play their third consecutive game against a New York team when they host the Knicks on Tuesday. Courtesy of: globaltvedmonton.com
Houston Rockets (NBA) added to their training camp roster 24-year old guard P.J. Hairston (198-100kg-92, college: N.Carolina) from Memphis Grizzlies. In 20 NBA games he had 6.5ppg and 2.3rpg last season. Hairston also played for the Hornets where in 48 NBA games he recorded 6.0ppg and 2.7rpg. Two years ago he was drafted by Miami Heat in first round (26th overall). The former University of North Carolina star is in his third season in pro basketball. The list of the past achievements is q... [read more]
Houston Rockets (NBA) added to their training camp roster 24-year old guard P.J. Hairston (198-100kg-92, college: N.Carolina) from Memphis Grizzlies. In 20 NBA games he had 6.5ppg and 2.3rpg last season. Hairston also played for the Hornets where in 48 NBA games he recorded 6.0ppg and 2.7rpg. Two years ago he was drafted by Miami Heat in first round (26th overall). The former University of North Carolina staris in his third season in pro basketball. The list of the past achievements is quite long as among others he played in the final of ACC Tournament for two years in a row (2012 and 2013). Hairston was also voted USBasket.com D-League All-Rookie 2nd Team in 2014 at his college time. Hairston has played also professionally in D-League (Texas Legends).
Thunder PG Cameron Payne fractures foot. Again - 3 hours ago
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Just as he was getting back into the flow after fracturing his foot this summer, Thunder point guard Cameron Payne(6'2''-G-94, college: Murray St.) hurt himself all over again. Thunder release: The Oklahoma City Thunder announced today that guard Cameron Payne suffered an acute fracture to his fifth metatarsal in Tuesday night's Blue-White Scrimmage. This is a troubling setback for the 22-year-old Payne, whom Oklahoma City drafted No. 14 last year. The Thunder didn't play him enough last... [read more]
Just as he was getting back into the flow after fracturing his foot this summer, Thunder point guard Cameron Payne (6'2''-G-94, college: Murray St.) hurt himself all over again. Thunder release: The Oklahoma City Thunder announced today that guard Cameron Payne suffered an acute fracture to his fifth metatarsal in Tuesday night's Blue-White Scrimmage. This is a troubling setback for the 22-year-old Payne, whom Oklahoma City drafted No. 14 last year. The Thunder didn't play him enough last season to maximize his development, and now, they won't the chance to make amends for a while. Russell Westbrook will obviously still handle the large majority of point guard minutes, and this sets up Ronnie Price to open the season as the primary backup. The 33-year-old Price can play tough defense in limited playing time, but asking him to run the second unit offensively will likely turn out poorly. Oklahoma City could stagger Westbrook's and Victor Oladipo's minutes, using Oladipo as the lead guard when Westbrook sits. But Oladipo didn't take to that role in Orlando. This could also open the door slightly for Semaj Christon to make the regular-season roster as the third healthy point guard. But the Thunder already have 16 players, one more than the regular-season roster limit, with guaranteed salaries - and that doesn't count Christon. Oklahoma City would have to drop Mitch McGary and one other player to keep Christon, which seems unlikely. The Thunder will probably just have to grind it out with Price behind Westbrook. Courtesy of: nbcsports.com
25-year old British power forward Ryan Richards (212-104kg-91, agency: Three Eye Sports). The last season Richards played at Al Ahli (Premier League) in Bahrain. In 2010 he was drafted by the Spurs in second round (49th overall). Richards won Austrian Bundesliga A championship title in 2013. He was also a member of British international program for some years. Richards played for British Senior National Team back in 2011 and previously for U20 National Team... [read more]
San Antonio Spurs (NBA) waived 25-year old British power forward Ryan Richards (212-104kg-91, agency: Three Eye Sports). The last season Richards played at Al Ahli (Premier League) in Bahrain. In 2010 he was drafted by the Spurs in second round (49th overall). Richards won Austrian Bundesliga A championship title in 2013. He was also a member of British international program for some years. Richards played for British Senior National Team back in 2011 and previously for U20 National Team in 2011. He represented United Kingdom at the European Championships U18 Division B in Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina) seven years ago. Richards' team got to the Semifinals and his stats at that event were 2 games: 29.0ppg, 13.0rpg. Richards is a very experienced player. He has quite traveled the world as his pro career brought him to thirteen different countries on three different continents (Europe, Asia and of course North America). Richards has played previously professionally in Belgium, China (Guangxi), Georgia (Sokhumi), Greece (Ikaros Kallitheas), Hungary (Kormend), Iran (Shahrdari Gorgan and Azad), Italy, Lebanon (Sagesse), Poland (Asseco), Spain, Switzerland (Lugano Tigers), Austria (Vienna) and United Arab Emirates (Al Naser). His game is described as:
(by Aran Smith for NBADraft.net in 2010)
A player who looks extremely impressive in a workout setting due to his size, agility and touch ... The young bigman shows the ability to shoot with both hands and has some range on his shot ... Utilizes hook shots well and has the basics of playing in the post with footwork and post moves.
Coming from England, he didn't grow up in a basketball environment and lacks the natural feel for the game that someone who does, possesses ... His basketball IQ is a work in progress.
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