Delonte West, Rajon Rondo

Delonte West injured again, Shaq set for playoffs return


Is there a M*A*S*H* unit that follows the Celtics around?

It just seems it would be cost efficient at this point. Boston picked up another injury Monday, but just one so it may be under their daily quota. This time it was Delonte West spraining his ankle, reports A. Sherrod Blakely at CSN New England.

Delonte West hurt his right ankle in the third quarter, the same ankle that sidelined him for a couple of weeks earlier this month.

“I was worried,” said coach Doc Rivers, who added that there’s no timetable for when West will return.

Don’t expect to see Wednesday for sure. Boston struggled for a stretch when Rajon Rondo got worn down because there was no quality backup for him. West was going to fix that, but it’s less of an issue heading into the playoffs when the minutes behind Rondo would be reduced anyway.

The bigger issue is Shaquille O’Neal. Boston needs him back — he has played just six minutes since Feb. 1 (he came back from an Achilles injury and it took six minutes to strain his calf). Danny Ainge told the Boston Globe Shaq will be back when the playoffs start. Promise.

“We’re planning as of right now of him practicing Thursday or Friday and being ready to play for Game 1 of the playoffs,” Ainge said. “I have every confidence that he will be ready and play in the playoffs.”

Is there anyone counting on Shaq, anyone who has bet bigger on him recently, than Ainge?

Dwight Howard crushes Kristaps Porzingis with dunk (video)

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Sometimes – as Kristaps Porzingis sees against Dwight Howard – it’s more flattering just to play James Harden-level defense.

Marc Gasol heads ball into basket after drawing foul (video)

Marc Gasol
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This was not Marc Gasol‘s first attempt to head in the ball after a whistle, but this time, he converted.

Here was his January try:


James Harden’s defense: Stop and point while opponent flies to rim (video)


As Rockets general manager Daryl Morey once noted, cherry-picking James Harden‘s worst defensive plays to create a video is unfair. Many players would look awful by that measure.

But Harden provides serious ammo for these worst-of videos.

This non-attempt to stop Lance Thomas is just brutal.

At least Houston buckled down to beat the Knicks, 116-111 in overtime. The Rockets have climbed to 26th in points allowed per possession.

Jerry Colangelo says Kobe Bryant could still make 2016 U.S. Olympic team

Kobe Bryant, Zachary Stinson
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So, Kobe Bryant‘s NBA career is officially going to come to an end after the 2015-16 season. That part he announced on Sunday.

What’s still up in the air is Bryant’s participation in one last Olympics. Bryant has been in consideration to make Team USA this summer at the games in Rio de Janeiro, and USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo tells’s Marc Stein that he hasn’t ruled that out yet:

Kobe was asked about this at his post-game press conference Sunday and said it was not a goal, but if it was offered he’d consider it.

“I’d be honored if that was there, it would be fantastic to be around that group and spend kind of the last journey with them,” Bryant said. “That being said, it’s not something that I’m obsessing over.”

‘When Bryant made it known that he wanted to play in Rio, he made it clear to Colangelo and Team USA coach Mike Krzyzewski that he wanted to earn a spot, not be given one as a lifetime achievement award. Watching him so far this season, it’s almost impossible to imagine him making the roster on merit.

But nobody should begrudge him if he wanted to extend the farewell tour just a little bit longer.