Monday And-1 links: Anthony Morrow to honor Drazen Petrovic


Here is our daily look around the NBA — links to stories worth reading and notes to check out (stuff that did not get its own post here at PBT).

Anthony Morrow is going to wear a Drazen Petrovic Nets throwback jersey during the All-Star Three Point Contest next weekend in Orlando. Petrovic was a legendary player and the last Net in the three point contest. He was killed in a car accident at age 28. That is an incredibly cool idea.

Mark Cuban on the Nets moving to Brooklyn: “’I hope the stadium works, I hope they do a great job and I hope the team sucks.”

Allen Iverson has gotten a contract offer — from an indoor soccer team.

Fernando Valenzuela is one of the few people on the planet who could probably relate Jeremy Lin, and he talks about it.

J.R. Smith wants to take advantage of his “clean slate” in New York to rebuild his image.

Tracy McGrady is not happy with how he is being used in Atlanta. Yes, that is the Hawks biggest problem by far.

Raymond Felton isn’t happy with how he’s being used in Portland. My advice, shoot better than 36.6 percent on the year and he might like how he gets used better.

In Houston, Samuel Dalembert got benched for missing shootaround on Sunday — Patrick Patterson started and Delembert played off the bench. And not all that well.

Defensive specialist and Thunder starting two guard Thabo Sefolosha will miss about another month with a tendon injury in his foot.

J.J. Hickson isn’t having a lot of fun in Sacramento and misses Cleveland. So, there is at least one person who misses Cleveland.

Nets guard Jordan Farmar will be out likely through the All-Star break with a groin injury.

Good one from Chris Sheridan at Sheridanhoops: “Hasheem Thabeet was a DNP with a sore lower back, which is what can happen when you sit on the bench for extended periods of time, like a month.”

Hit comedy “The Big Bang Theory” had its nerd characters try their hands at basketball last episode.

Danilo Gallinari is still limited to bike work and will still be early next month before he returns (which was the original time table).

Tony Parker is opening up a night club in San Antonio.

The Knicks had to waive Ronaldo Balkman to make room for J.R. Smith, the Nets might pick him up.

Cleveland did not give Ben Uzoh a second 10-day contract.

Former Kings players DeMarcus Cousins, Matt Barnes reach out to pay for funeral of Stephon Clark

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Whatever Kings fans thought of DeMarcus Cousins on the court — it was a divisive topic with changing opinions over time — he was fully committed to the city of Sacramento. He was all in.

Still is, despite playing for New Orleans. Cousins and another former King, Matt Barnes (a Sacramento native), have reached out to the family of Stephon Clark — the unarmed young black man shot by Sacramento police in his grandmother’s backyard a week ago — and offered to pay for the funeral, reports Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee.

It is a generous gesture. The family had set up a gofundme page and has raised enough to pay for the funeral expenses through it as well.

Clark’s shooting has sparked protests throughout Sacramento, including blocking entrance to a Kings game on Thursday night. According to reports and the Sacramento PD’s own account, the shooting occurred when police were looking for a car burglary suspect and officers had tracked the suspect through yards, then confronted Clark in the backyard of his grandmother’s house, where he lived. Police allegedly thought he was armed and shot him 20 times, but he was holding only a cellphone.

The shooting has sparked reactions around the nation and from NBA players, including Barnes.

Steve Kerr and David West of the Golden State Warriors had these comments, via Logan Murdock of the San Jose Mercury News.

“I was very proud of how the Kings handled it, the way the NBA handled it,” Kerr said Friday. “I thought they did everything they could…

“The main sentiment, though, is horror and sadness for the family involved and there’s not much else to say,” Kerr said.

“You want to go through this song and dance again?” West asked. “I’m done. I stopped. I don’t have the optimism anymore.”

“We’ve been dealing with these issues for hundreds of years and so they continue.” West continued. “We won’t look at real solutions so these things continue to happen.”

Utah’s Donovan Mitchell with shot of night to force OT with Spurs


One of the factors to consider in the Rookie of the Year race: clutch plays.

Down three with less than 10 seconds to go Friday night, the Utah Jazz put the ball in the hands of their rookie playmaker Donovan Mitchell — and he made the play, draining a three to force overtime. It’s an impressive play.

In the clutch this season (last five minutes of a game, within five points), Mitchell has averaged 3.2 shots per contest (by far the most of any rookie) and has a true shooting percentage of 51 percent. Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons, the other front-runner in the ROY race, averages less than a shot per game in those clutch situations (0.8) and has a true shooting percentage of 66.7 percent.

Mitchell made the big shot, but the Spurs made plenty too, had 45 points on the night from LaMarcus Aldridge, and got the win.


PBT Extra: Who is coming out of the Eastern Conference?

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The Toronto Raptors will finish with the No. 1 seed and all the best metrics in the East, but they have a history of playoff flameouts. The Boston Celtics’ have been hit hard by injuries. And the Cleveland Cavaliers have LeBron James but also a dreadful defense, this is the most vulnerable a LeBron led team has been since he bolted Cleveland seven years ago.

So what team is coming out of the East?

We get into that in this latest PBT Extra. A poll on Twitter found most of you think the Cavaliers, but personally, I think the Raptors — who have been better defensively all season than the Cavs — may finally have their year.

LaMarcus Aldridge drops career-high 45 points, Spurs beat Jazz in OT

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SAN ANTONIO (AP) — LaMarcus Aldridge had a career-high 45 points, helping San Antonio overcome Donovan Mitchell‘s 35-point performance for Utah in the Spurs’ 124-120 overtime victory over the Jazz on Friday night.

The Spurs won their sixth straight and beat the Jazz for the first time in four meetings this season.

Utah’s 12-game road winning streak came to an end, but only after Mitchell had 14 points in the fourth quarter, including three 3-pointers in the final two minutes to force overtime.

San Antonio remained sixth in the Western Conference with the same record as fifth-place New Orleans, a half-game behind Oklahoma City for fourth. Utah remained eighth in the West.

After free throws by Spurs guards Manu Ginobili and Patty Mills and a dunk by Jazz center Rudy Gobert put San Antonio up 114-111, Mitchell drained his third 3-pointer of the fourth with 3.6 seconds remaining to force overtime.

Mills, who finished with 23 points, had six points in overtime as the Spurs capped an undefeated six-game homestand.

Aldridge averaged 32.2 points and 9.0 rebounds during the winning streak, including two double-doubles.

Aldridge scored 28 points in the first half on 12-for-16 shooting, including a 3-pointer.

Utah missed its first six shots and was 4 for 14 as San Antonio grabbed a 19-8 lead midway through the first quarter. Mitchell settled the Jazz, scoring six points to cut the Spurs lead to 29-21 heading into the second quarter.

Mitchell was 14-for-35 shooting while falling six points shy of his season-high.

Derrick Favors added 22 points for Utah and Ricky Rubio had 20.

Ginobili finished with 18 points for the Spurs.