After being the leading scorer in EuroLeague last season and a good showing at the FIBA World Championships in Turkey last summer, we had high hopes for Linas Kleiza this season in Toronto.
It hasn’t worked out that way. And now his season is over after the team reported that he had microfrature surgery and arthroscopic surgery for torn meniscus (two different procedures) that will keep him out 9 months to a year.
Kleiza returned to the NBA’s Raptors after agreeing to a four-year, $18 million deal that the Nuggets chose not to match. With the vacuum created by the exit of Chris Bosh, Kleiza was seen as a guy who could step in and take on some of the scoring load.
Kleiza has averaged 11.2 points per game on 43.8 percent shooting and his rebounding numbers were pedestrian. The Raptors have spiraled down lately, having now dropped 13 in a row.
The length of recovery for these surgeries means Kleiza likely will miss the start of next season as well (if it starts on time due to the lockout).
Markieff Morris‘ frustrations last night didn’t end with his scuffle with teammate Archie Goodwin. They didn’t end with the Suns’ loss to the Warriors, either.
As Morris was leaving the court, a fan heckled him: “Markieff, you f—ing suck. I can’t wait until you’re traded.” Though Morris probably agrees with the second sentence, he flipped off the fan:
Though it’s difficult to confirm that video was from last night, it jibes with a previous report of the incident.
John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports 98.7
Morris will likely at least be fined. Considering his previous behavioral problems this season – he threw a towel at Jeff Hornacek – I wouldn’t completely rule out a suspension. But a fine seems most likely.
An embarrassing lack of focus by the Rockets? I can hardly believe it.
Late in a game against a team Houston is battling for playoff position, Dwight Howard was just careless, stepping on the baseline as he inbounded the ball. It’s a needless goof, and he’ll get plenty of deserved criticism for it.
But don’t overlook Patrick Beverley‘s frustration foul on Damian Lillard before the ensuing inbound. That was nearly as foolish and even more costly.
The sequence sparked a 7-0 run for the Trail Blazers, who seized control of the game en route to a 116-103 win.
Marcus Smart went to tag DeAndre Jordan on the pick-and-roll, and Jordan took off from so far from the basket, he was dunking on Smart before the Celtics guard could do a thing.
The slow-motion replays are absolutely brutal.