Hornets conducting romantic comedy plot with coaching candidates, move on to Monty Williams

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The New Orleans Hornets looked well on their way to hiring Tom Thibodeau to be their next head coach, but with Thibodeau taking his sweet time (with good reason, in case you haven’t heard, he’s got some stuff going on), the Hornets are not willing to wait.

So much like a romantic comedy, after a series of hilarious hijinx, the Hornets are moving on to Blazers assistant Monty Williams, and have offered him a contract.

What’s odd is that they haven’t shut down talks with Thibodeau, nor have they rescinded the offer they lodged towards him earlier this week. They’re just kind of acting like it didn’t happen, without addressing it.

Thibodeau has been on the tippy toe cusp of a gig for three seasons now, and has consistently managed to somehow not land a job, despite all signs pointing to him being a terrific candidate. With so many options available, it’s unlikely that he’ll run out of positions, though. He can afford to wait, especially with a championship ring on the line.

Besides, it’s really muggy down there and there are giant bugs. Great coffee, though.

Williams himself has been on the same close-call call list for the past few years, but it’s hard to argue he’s got Thibodeau’s recent resume. Then again, Williams didn’t have Kevin Garnett, you know, the one with knees, either.

Al Horford shows he still has hops dunking on Solomon Hill (VIDEO)

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That’s just nasty.

Atlanta’s Al Horford gets the ball out high, but within his range, so when he pump fakes Indiana’s Lavoy Allen goes flying by. That opens up the lane and Horford attacks it, Solomon Hill tries to cut him off, but Horford just finishes threw him.

Pacers and Hawks played an entertaining, close game Friday night.

Dwyane Wade shows he still has hops with dunk on Hornets (VIDEO)

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Dwyane Wade still has some springs.

In what may be his best dunk in recent memory, he shoulders Michael Kidd-Gilchrist to create space in transition, then gets up and throws it down before Nicolas Batum can get there for the block.

Not sure even Wade saw that one coming.

Reigning dunk champ LaVine: ‘I’ve got tricks up my sleeve’

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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota Timberwolves guard Zach LaVine is heading back to All-Star weekend to defend his slam dunk title. And he says he has “a few tricks up my sleeve” after dominating the event last year.

LaVine will compete against Detroit center Andre Drummond, Denver swingman Will Barton and Orlando forward Aaron Gordon in Toronto next weekend.

LaVine was one of the breakout stars of All-Star weekend last year with his electric performance in the dunk contest. He says he debated about coming back and made his decision after strong encouragement from his fans.

If LaVine wins, he will become the fourth player in the 31-year history of the event to repeat as champion. Michael Jordan, Jason Richardson and Nate Robinson are the others.

Report: Blake Griffin has second procedure on hand, timeline remains unchanged

Blake Griffin
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Blake Griffin will still return to the Clippers some time in March (barring any setbacks).

That said, he had a second procedure this week to repair the boxer’s fracture in his right hand, reports Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.

Clippers forward Blake Griffin underwent a second procedure this week on his broke right hand, sources told ESPN. The procedure was a part of the original surgery last week, so sources said the 4-6 week timeframe for his return remains unchanged.

This might help explain why Griffin’s hand looked so swollen and scarred this week. But to be clear, this was a planned second procedure, not a setback.

Griffin suffered the fracture punching a Clippers’ equipment manager while everyone was out to dinner in Toronto recently, while Griffin was still sidelined with a quadricep injury. The Clippers have moved on, but it is likely the league will tack on a couple of game suspension for Griffin upon his return to health.

And no, the Clippers are not looking to trade Griffin in spite of this. So stop asking.