UPDATE #2 6:24 pm: It is official, Durant is going to sit out the Celtics/Thunder Friday night matchup due to a sprained ankle suffered Wednesday night against the Rockets. An MRI showed no structural damage, but it’s too much to play through. The Oklahoman had a quote from the man.
“After the game, I think it got worse,” said Durant, the league’s leading scorer at 28 points per game. “Maybe I should have come out in the first quarter. But I just wanted to help my team win. And I felt if I was on the floor I was helping my team.”
James Harden will start in Durant’s place against Boston. Durant played in all 82 games for the Thunder last season — their luck with injuries was one of the secrets to them getting 50 wins. Jeff Green also will sit out this one for OKC.
UPDATE 2:58 pm: Durant told Lisa Saulters of ESPN that he is “50/50” for tonight. Which sounds a lot like questionable or game time decision. Phrase it however you wish, the result is the same.
12:32 pm: Two nights ago the Boston Celtics took on a Brandon Roy-less Blazers team, catching one of those breaks of the schedule. Friday night they may pick up another.
Kevin Durant is officially questionable but more likely is out for tonight’s Thunder/Celtics matchup due to a sprained ankle, according to a tweet from Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman. That means James Harden will start in his place. I like James Harden, quality player. He’s no KD.
Jeff Green also is out for the Thunder, with Serge Ibaka starting in his place at the four (which helps the Thunder defense out).
Without those two, it’s Russell Westbrook against the Celtics defense. In hostile Boston Garden. That’s a rough one. Maybe they get a Ewing Theory bump, but a lot of things need to go right for the Thunder now.
HOUSTON (AP) Stephen Curry scored 32 points, Klay Thompson had 25 and the Golden State Warriors built a big lead early and held on for a 113-106 win over the Houston Rockets on Tuesday night.
The Warriors scored 37 points in the first quarter and never trailed on the way to their eighth straight victory and 60th this season.
Golden State led by eight after a pair of free throws by Curry with just over three minutes left. Patrick Beverley countered with a tip-in layup for Houston, then was fouled when he was knocked to the ground on a screen by Draymond Green seconds later.
James Harden missed a layup on the next possession before Green added a shot on the other end to put the Warriors up 107-99.
Another layup miss by Harden followed, and Curry made a 3-pointer with 1:46 left to send fans streaming to the exits.
There was a scary moment during the matchup between the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets on Tuesday night. During a change of possession, Houston’s Trevor Ariza and and Golden State’s James Michael McAdoo got tangled up and fell together on the floor.
McAdoo was under Ariza and wound up getting his head slammed into the hardwood. He was immediately taken off the floor and sent to the locker room.
The NBATV broadcast said McAdoo received stitches but did not test positive for a concussion. He is averaging 8.7 minutes, 2.9 points, and 1.7 rebounds per-game for the Warriors.
Jusuf Nurkic did not enjoy his time as a member of the Denver Nuggets. His trade to the Portland Trail Blazers in exchange for Mason Plumlee was a welcome change of scenery.
On Tuesday night, Nurkic got to take on his old team with huge playoff implications at stake. Portland beat the Nuggets, 122-113, moving a game ahead of their rivals in the race for the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference and giving them the best tiebreaker between the two.
Nurkic was impressive, blasting his old squad with 33 points on 12-of-15 shooting, adding 16 rebounds, three blocks, and two assists.
Nurkic was interviewed in the arena after the game, and he was obviously happy he helped his team while also sticking it to Denver. Speaking with Portland reporter Brooke Olzendam, Nurkic took one last shot at the Nuggets, telling them to enjoy their summer.
Nurkic quite possibly sent the Nuggets packing for the year with the game at the Moda Center on Tuesday, so he might have been the guy who helped start their summer.
Still, that is ice cold.
Miami Heat forward James Johnson is one of the NBA’s best in-game dunkers. On Tuesday night against the Detroit Pistons, he yammed down a huge one-handed slam that embarrassed Marcus Morris and drew gasps from the crowd at the Palace.
The play came midway through the fourth quarter with Johnson at the top of the key. After a quick pass over to him, Johnson gave a quick hesitation before driving to his left and past his defender.
With the quick step, Johnson’s only remaining opponent at the basket was Morris, who was unfortunate enough to find himself between the high-flying Heat and the rim.
This is what happened next:
Morris was whistled for a foul on the play.