UPDATE 6:00 pm: In the immortal words of Emily Litella, “never mind.”
Durant tweeted this afternoon that he was just joking, he has no intention of doing the dunk contest. His choice, he can do what he wants, but don’t tease us like that man. We need people like you to be in, to liven it up, to own it like Dwight Howard owned it. Don’t say you’re in and not mean it. We can’t take it.
3:15 pm: After this season’s infamous dunk contest, the NBA would love for somebody to generate some interest in next year’s contest. Maybe Oklahoma City star Kevin Durant can be that guy. Durant announced on his U-Stream show last night that he’ll compete in the dunk contest.
Durant says he ways invited to participate in this year’s contest, but was scared to do it. Apparently, watching that abomination of a contest gave Durant confidence, as he said “I know I got some dunks that I coulda did better than what those guys did.” One would hope so.
I’m not sure what kind of a performance Durant will put on in the contest. Durant is obviously a great player who will generate some interest, and he’s an entertaining in-game dunker. However, he’s not much of a leaper, and his dunks are more a product of his length than his hops. Off the top of my head, I would say that Russell Westbrook and Serge Ibaka might both be better dunk-contest dunkers than their superstar teammate. That said, Durant is a creative guy who will have a lot of pressure on him to succeed in the contest. Hopefully he has some tricks up his sleeve, because I don’t think I can take another dunk contest like the last one.
NEW YORK (AP) James Harden had 22 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists in his 12th triple-double of the season and the Houston Rockets easily ended their first losing streak of the season by beating the Brooklyn Nets 137-112 on Sunday night.
Held to 105 points in losses to Minnesota and Memphis, the Rockets bounced back with 104 after three quarters and handed the Nets their 10th straight loss.
Eric Gordon led the Rockets with 24 points and Trevor Ariza added 23. Houston made 21 3-pointers and had five players with at least 16 points.
Houston shot just 40.8 percent during its two losses, well below its 46.8 season average, while being held nearly 10 points below its season scoring average. But the Rockets had no trouble bouncing back against the Nets, who allow an NBA-worst 114.3 per game.
Joel Embiid has fans all around the NBA. Some even came out to see him during the Philadelphia 76ers game against the Washington Wizards on Saturday despite the Cameroonian big man sitting out due to restrictions on playing in back-to-back games.
#BusTheProcess was the hashtag used to get 350 Sixers fans to the game in D.C. thanks to Embiid, coach Brett Brown, and the podcast The Rights to Ricky Sanchez.
Via Twitter and ESPN:
Fun stuff for some dedicated fans, even if they didn’t get to see Embiid play.
Unfortunately for the #BusTheProcess folks, the 76ers wound up losing to the Wizards, 109-93.
Michael Carter-Williams is still shaking the dust off after being inserted into the starting lineup, I guess. At least, that’s about what you can say when you pass the ball off your starting center’s face.
But there’s good news! The Chicago Bulls scored on this play.
Let’s take a look at the whole thing, shall we?
I think the more important question is whether Carter-Williams received a secondary or primary assists on the NBA.com tracking site.
ATLANTA (AP) Kent Bazemore scored 24 points, Mike Dunleavy added 20 and the Atlanta Hawks beat the Milwaukee Bucks 111-98 on Sunday.
Giannis Antetokounmpo finished with 33 points and was a tough matchup in the paint for Milwaukee, which dropped 2 1/2 games behind the fourth-place Hawks in the Eastern Conference.
Atlanta has won eight of nine. The Bucks have dropped three of five.
Dunleavy, in his second game since arriving in a trade last week with Cleveland, had his first 20-point performance since a first-round playoff game for Chicago on April 30, 2015.
Antetokounmpo has scored at least 30 points in eight games in a breakout season.