When the New Orleans Hornets went in search of a new coach, the prevailing wisdom was this was Avery Johnson’s job to lose. He’s a Louisiana native, he likes a style and pace that would suit Chris Paul, and the incoming owner Gary Chouest liked him.
Johnson may have lost it.
Depends on who you ask. ESPN’s Marc Stein says he was one of two “standout candidates” along with Boston’s defensive-minded assistant Tom Thibodeau. Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski says that Johnson is no longer the front-runner for the job. So much so that they are interviewing Jazz assistant Ty Corbin today.
Maybe Thibodeau moved to the top of the list — his stock had to have gone up after his defensive plan slowed Orlando in Game 1. But that’s a guess, we don’t really know what Chouest — who has been in on the interviews and active in the process — thinks on this. We don’t know where Johnson stands.
What we do know is that Chouest is an oil man whose company works in the Gulf of Mexico, and a lot of his energy has gone toward containing the horrific ongoing oil spill there (that was not related to his company). That could slow down the interview and decision process for the Hornets.
The Golden State Warriors are so talented, perhaps the officials are predisposed to blowing whistles in their favor. At least, that’s the only explanation you could give to a Utah Jazz fan after seeing what happened between Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, and Utah’s Joe Johnson on Thursday night.
As Durant came off a curl on the far side of the court, he used a screen set by Curry on Johnson.
With the ball in his hands, Durant rose to fire but found himself locked in arms with another player. Durant’s shot attempt helplessly bounced away as he shot, and officials whistled Johnson on the play.
Of course, a closer look reveals that the player Durant’s arms were tangled up with was … Curry.
Yes, Curry had arm locked what he thought was Johnson on the screen but was instead his teammate and MVP candidate.
It didn’t matter, as referees awarded Durant the free throws, of which he only made 1 of 2.
Perhaps that’s some solace?
Golden State beat Utah, 106-99.
New York Knicks C Joakim Noah has an awkward jumper and free throw technique, there’s no denying that. His two-handed, horizontal approach to shooting a basketball is ripe for criticism.
DeMarcus Cousins thinks so, at least.
During a game between the Sacramento Kings and the Knicks, Cousins decided to give Noah a little tongue-in-cheek trolling about his form.
Looks about right.
The 1980s were back in Cleveland Friday night. Well, not completely, Bernie Kosar wasn’t leading the Browns to contention (although man, could they use him now).
No, the ’80s were back in the form of the throwback orange Cavaliers uniforms. And to complete the theme, the Cavaliers players dressed up and Rick-rolled the intro video — they did the complete “classic” Rick Astley hit “Never Gonna Give You Up.” And it was awesome.
The Cavaliers won the game 114-84 over the Heat behind 28 from Kevin Love, but that was secondary to the intro video.
Second-year forward Sam Dekker is finding a comfort zone in the Mike D’Antoni offense in Houston. Healthy this season, he is coming off the bench for 18 minutes a night, and his game where he is quick and can also hit the three is fitting perfectly with Houston’s system, leading him to 6.7 points a game.
Also, he can run the floor. And finish.
As Enes Kanter found out when he hustled, got back in transition defense, and wasn’t going to stop Dekker from getting to the rim.
That’s a quality dunk.
The Rockets went on to win the game 102-99, despite Russell Westbrook‘s seventh-straight triple-double.