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.
• Michael Beasley says, “My future is so blurry.” Sometimes the chronic jokes just write themselves.
• Zach Randolph could soon be back in the Grizzlies starting lineup.
• Chris Kaman has a tibia injury and is done for the season in New Orleans.
• Darko Milicic also is likely out for the season. As if he wasn’t already.
• Pau Gasol “wouldn’t mind” a night off for some rest before the playoffs. I wouldn’t mind a night out with Padma Lakshmi.
• Speaking of rest, the Heat players will get some down the stretch, too.
• Oh, forget more rest — Kyrie Irving may well come back and play for the Cavaliers as soon on Wednesday night.
• A visual representation of what a great statistical year LeBron James is having. Also, how bad Jason Collins is.
• Here’s an interesting two part Q&A with Jim Buss, the guy running the show for the Lakers now. I’ll say this for him: He has realized that he can’t be a recluse and has to establish some kind of openness and trust with the fan base.
• Chris Paul went with his family to a Dodger game in Los Angeles and when shown on the big screen was booed by the fans. The Clippers are gaining converts, but LA is still a Lakers town at its core.
• Kevin Love is starting to undergo the battery of post-concussion tests to see if he can get back on the court soon.
• Kobe Bryant talks about his injuries, coaching and how good the Lakers can be.
• Atlanta’s WNBA team the Dream drafted an ineligible player this week during the WNBA draft. Well done.
• NBA players and the ritual of sleep and naps. Plus, as an interesting side notes, games lost to injuries are way up this season.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Russell Westbrook had his seventh consecutive triple-double Friday night in the Oklahoma City Thunder’s game against the Houston Rockets, the longest streak since Michael Jordan had seven straight in 1989.
Westbrook got his 10th rebound with 7:46 left in the fourth quarter. He already had 16 points and 10 assists. Westbrook finished with 27 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists.
The Thunder won the first six games during his streak, however they fell to James Harden and the Rockets 102-99. Harden was one rebound short of his own triple-double.
It was Westbrook’s 12th triple-double of the season and the 49th of his career. He is the NBA’s active leader in the category and ranks overall.
Jordan’s streak came during a run of 10 triple-doubles in 11 games.
NEW YORK (AP) — The NBA has denied the Toronto Raptors’ protest of their 102-99 loss to the Sacramento Kings on Nov. 20.
The league announced the decision Friday.
Toronto argued that the game officials incorrectly called for an instant replay review of whether the Raptors’ Terrence Ross released a 3-point shot prior to the expiration of actual time remaining.
The Replay Center official reviewed video of the play using a digital timer and determined the actual time remaining in the game expired before Ross released his shot, and the shot therefore did not count.
The league found that calling for an instant replay review in this case was consistent with the playing rules because the game officials determined that there was a clock malfunction.
Nobody can stop the Zeller brothers!
Well, that’s not exactly true. But in this case, Bismack Biyombo tried and Cody Zeller threw it down with authority over him.
I’m not starting a “Cody Zeller for the dunk contest” campaign, but this was impressive.
Pop quiz: Which team complains the most to the referees in the NBA?
You probably answered “the Clippers.” Most fans do. So do most NBA referees — And everyone else. Which is why after a recent loss to Golden State, veteran Marreese Speight (a Warrior last season) pointed to the Clippers complaining about the officiating as part of the problem.
He went on to say that the scouting report is you can get in the Clippers’ heads by knocking them around a little. Which seems pretty obvious when you watch teams play them. Shockingly, Clippers coach Doc Rivers disagrees with that. Via NBCLosAngeles.com.
“The officiating thing, I don’t think, is our issue. I will say that,” said Rivers about the technical fouls. “If that were the problem, then, Golden State would be struggling. They’ve been No. 2 the last two years in techs, too. I think we need to point fingers in another direction than that.”
Doc may not like it, but Speights is right.
The Warriors do complain too much, but they also have a ring so more is forgiven. The problem for the Clippers is that reputation for complaining starts with Rivers — he complains as much or more than any coach in the league. Then it filters down through Chris Paul and Blake Griffin.
Is it fair that more is forgiven with winning? Moot question. Welcome to America. The Clippers complain a lot and have yet to get past the second round with this core. And at times there standing there complaining to the referees does get in the way of them getting back into defense, and they seem to go in a funk.
Want to prove all that wrong? Win. In the playoffs.