Tuesday And-1 links: Delonte West, Lamar Odom go to the zoo

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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) — done in bullet point form. Because bloggers love bullet points.

• Delonte West and Lamar Odom went to the zoo. That went about as strangely as you’d expect. Good news for Odom is giraffes can’t boo. (Hat tip to Zach Lowe for finding that.)

• Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has written a children’s book.

• Dwight Howard has signed with a Hollywood talent agency to set up his off-the-court deals. Big men tend not to get the shoe sales and endorsements of slashing guards and forwards, but Howard is looking to break that mold.

• The other Orlando big man, Glen Davis, had to get five stitches after a blow to his head Monday, but he returned to the game for the Magic. That’s not being a baby.

• The Clippers are in the middle of a 20 games in 31 days stretch — no team has had to do that in 45 years. This is their prices for a normal pace for the first few weeks of the season.

• Zach Randolph says he is good coming off the bench for the Grizzlies. He’s saying that now, anyways.

• The Wizards’ Trevor Booker is battling plantar fasciitis in his left foot.

• Sixers supersub Lou Williams can opt out at the end of this season. He says he hasn’t thought about that. Sure he hasn’t.

• Raja Bell is getting a third opinion on his knee. He may need to undergo microfracture surgery on it, but he wants to hear options first.

• Why did the Thunder get Derek Fisher? In part because they offered him a $2.3 million salary (prorated, of course), via Marc Stein of ESPN.

• Kyle Lowry is on an antibacterial cycle to combat his bacterial infection. Why you care is that the Rockets PG will not even be re-evaluated until April 7.

• In maybe the least surprising note in our lineup today, Larry Brown wants to coach again. (Good read on the man from the NY Daily News.)

• The Hawks’ Joe Johnson and the Thunder’s Kevin Durant today are your Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week for last week. Johnson averaged of 23.2 points, 5.4 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game. Durant had a good week as well, but not one better than Kevin Love.

• Toronto is expected to sign Ben Uzoh to a 10-day contract Tuesday.

NBA fines Kyrie Irving for profanity directed toward fan in Philly (VIDEO)

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We were waiting for this moment this weekend and now it’s here. Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving has been fined $25,000 by the NBA for cursing at a fan in Philadelphia after the Celtics beat the 76ers.

This comes in the wake of the DeMarcus Cousins getting fined the same amount for getting into a similar altercation with a fan.

The NBA released the news Sunday in a statement issued through their PR department.

Via Twitter:

If you haven’t seen video of the incident, you can watch it below. Fair warning, there is obviously some very NSFW language in the media the ahead.

For what it’s worth, Irving said that he did not regret saying anything to the fan.

Via ESPN:

“At the end of the day, we’re human. It’s in heat of the moment and frustrations arise, we were at halftime, we were down by 4, in an environment, a season-opener in Philly. Being with a young team like we have here and staying composed, handling that before we go in the locker room and addressing what we have to do in the locker room and going out and handling business and getting the W, that’s really the only thing that matters to me.

“It’s up to the league at this point. But, like I said, I’m going to take full responsibility for what I said. I don’t have any regrets for it.”

Boston’s next game is on Tuesday at home against New York.

Bobby Portis apologizes for punching Nikola Mirotic in the face (VIDEO)

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As if this season wasn’t going to be hard enough for the Chicago Bulls, it started off on the wrong foot when Bobby Portis and Nikola Mirotic got into a fight during practice. That fight resulted in a facial fracture for Mirotic, putting one of Chicago’s best players out for multiple weeks.

Portis addressed the issue this week by apologizing to fans, the team, and Mirotic. However, Portis said that he has not heard from Mirotic since the fight, and that he did not respond when he tried to call his teammate.

Video of Portis’ apology is interesting if only because it’s a bit hard to discern the level of sincerity.

Via Twitter:

Chicago is 0-2 on the season. Portis is in the middle of serving an 8 game suspension for the incident.

Giannis Antetokounmpo scores career-high 44, dedicates game to father

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MILWAUKEE (AP) — After scoring a career-high 44 points, Giannis Antetokounmpo wrote a note on the game ball.

“This is for daddy. We got a win tonight,” the 22-year-old Milwaukee Bucks player said, remembering his father, Charles, who died last month at age 54.

Antetokounmpo scored 17 points in the fourth quarter, including a dunk that put Milwaukee ahead 111-110 with 11 seconds to go.

After a timeout, Damian Lillard found Jusuf Nurkic running open down the lane, but Antetokounmpo blocked his shot at the basket, sending the 7-foot center crashing to the floor.

Antetokounmpo, starting his fifth NBA season, made 17 of 23 shots with eight rebounds and four assists as Milwaukee kept pace with a Portland team that had dominated its first two opponents. The Bucks star is averaging 38.3 points through three games, up from 22.9 last year, 16.9 in 2015-16 and 12.7 in 2014-15.

“Seventy-nine more. This is just the beginning,” he said, thinking about how many regular-season games remain.

After Nurkic was rejected at the basket, Khris Middleton was fouled and made both free throws.

“They committed two guys to Dame, so somebody was going to be open,” Portland coach Terry Stotts said, referring to Lillard. “Turned out to be Nurk but they made a really good defensive play.”

Lillard scored 26 points, including 16 in the fourth quarter. CJ McCollum also scored 26, and Nurkic had 17 points and 11 rebounds. Tony Snell scored 17 points and Middleton added 16 for Milwaukee.

 

Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant ejected at end of loss to Grizzlies

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Stephen Curry is going to get fined for this.

The former MVP was frustrated, his team losing and thinking he was fouled by Mike Conley as he attacked the rim late in the Warriors loss in Memphis Saturday night. Curry threw his mouthpiece at the referee, which deservedly got him ejected instantly.

Durant followed him to the locker room, making a gesture that will earn him a fine as well.

The Warriors are 1-2 to start the season and there are a lot of factors at play. The China trip does this to teams, and throw in three straight trips to the Finals on top of it and it has an impact. The team is a little banged up. However, the biggest issue is their defense is a mess right now.

The Warriors will straighten it out eventually, but the start of the season could be a rough one for them.