Dallas is now 1-1 in clutch situations in these Finals, but Dirk Nowitzki has an idea of how they could get a little bit better. ESPN Dallas’ Jeff Caplan has the report:
“They keep sticking [LeBron James] on Jet in the fourth quarters and he’s been doing a good job,” Nowitzki said. “Jet hasn’t really been a crunch-time, clutch player for us the way we need him to.”
Terry, who has gone a combined 0-7 from the floor in the fourth quarters of the Mavericks’ two losses, acknowledges James has done a good job on him late in games, but doesn’t think James’ defensive success on him will continue:
“They know to take me out of the fourth quarter, which they didn’t do in Game 2,” Terry said of the Heat’s choice to turn to James defensively, “then they got a good chance.”
Added Terry: “Let’s see if [James] can defend me like that for seven games.”
“I had two opportunities,” Terry said. “One in the corner for 3, LeBron closed out. The other one in the right corner, LeBron closed out again, didn’t get enough air under it.
“Hey, it happens. If I get those same shots in Game 4, I bet I make them.”
Terry was a key part of the Mavericks’ incredible Game 2 comeback, and taking him out of the Mavericks’ offense in the fourth quarter makes life much easier on the Heat. And while LeBron did do a good job guarding Derrick Rose in the fourth quarters of the Heat-Bulls series, Terry is a better shooter than Rose, so he will have his opportunities to score. Dallas’ ultimate success or failure in the Finals may come down to whether he converts them or not.
After missing two entire seasons, all signs are pointing to 2014 No. 3 overall pick Joel Embiid finally taking the court this season. Last week, Sixers coach Brett Brown said that Embiid has looked great in his workouts and is on track to play in the preseason, and Embiid himself echoed that sentiment over the weekend. He told the Philadelphia Inquirer‘s Marc Narducci that he feels “100 percent.”
There’s always a possibility and fear that Embiid’s recurring foot problems will come back, but for now, all indications are that he’s feeling good and will be able to contribute this season, which should make Sixers fans excited.
The release of NBA 2K17, the latest edition of the popular 2K video-game series, is less than a month away. Players are starting to get their likenesses in the game, as well as their player ratings, and tweet them out. Magic forward Evan Fournier wasn’t too happy with the way his came out.
Fournier’s countryman Rudy Gobert got in on the fun, too, changing his Twitter avatar to Fournier’s screenshot and encouraging others to do the same. He even created a hashtag for it.
At least they’re having fun with it.
On Friday, the Jazz traded German center Tibor Pleiss to the Sixers along with two second-round picks for Kendall Marshall. The big draw of the trade for Philly was the picks, and Pleiss is not expected to stay with the Sixers, according to Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia’s Jessica Camerato.
Pleiss had a forgettable season with Utah, and the Sixers have a glut of bigs including Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, Joel Embiid and Dario Saric. It would have been virtually impossible for Pleiss to crack the rotation, and it’s unlikely another team picks up his contract, which has $3 million guaranteed this season.
As a Jordan Brand athlete, Russell Westbrook is under the same Nike umbrella as former teammate Kevin Durant. But his latest Jordan spot, released Friday, has a very pointed tagline: “Some run, some make runways.”
Given the circumstances, it’s hard to interpret that as anything other than a reference to Durant signing with the Warriors and Westbrook signing an extension with the Thunder.