Blake Griffin has torn meniscus, surgery needed. Out for Olympics, back for training camp.

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LAS VEGAS — Bad news for Team USA, which has lost another big man.

Bad news for Blake Griffin as he is about to have a second surgery on his left knee just days after signing a new, max five-year, $95 million contract on Wednesday.

Griffin suffered a meniscus tear in his left  knee during a scrimmage on Wednesday, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times. He did not play in Team USA’s exhibition win on Thursday night and will have surgery on it early next week, the report states.

Griffin will not be playing for the U.S. Olympic team in London later this month, but he will be available for Clippers training camp that starts in October.

The Clippers confirmed this on the team Web site.

This is the same knee Griffin had surgery on before his rookie year and the same knee he sprained in the playoffs. However, the new injury is reportedly unrelated to those injuries.

Griffin joins Dwight Howard, Chris Bosh and LeMarcus Aldridge as USA bigs forced to pull out of Olympics due to injury.

Anthony Davis — the Kentucky star and No. 1 overall pick of the Hornets in the draft — has been called back up to the national team (he was in Las Vegas anyway to play on the Hornets Summer League team). He played part of the fourth quarter Thursday night against the Dominican Republic, had a put-back offensive rebound under the basket and an and-1 three with the foul. You could see LeBron James and other Team USA players working hard to pump Davis up.

But Team USA coach Mike Krzyzewski added that this is a blow.

“Blake is one of the best players in the league,” Coach K said. “Anthony Davis at some time is going to be one of the best players in the league, but Blake is a proven commodity. And if we don’t have him that’s a big loss. He was playing really well for us.”

Raptors’ DeMar DeRozan fined $15,000 for criticizing referees

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The Raptors lost to the Warriors on Saturday, and DeMar DeRozan – despite his own brilliant performance – was irked.

The Toronto guard seemed particularly upset about a review of an out-of-bounds call in the final seconds. After initially giving the ball to the Raptors, officials said it touched DeRozan while he was out of bounds and granted Golden State possession:

The NBA’s replay guidelines say (emphasis mine): “Referees can only initiate a review on a called out-of-bounds play (for example, not one where an out-of-bounds might have occurred) and only those involving doubt as to which player caused the ball to go out (not those, for example, where a player stepped on the line).”

DeRozan

I mean, it’s frustrating being out there feeling like you playing 5-on-8. It’s just what it feel like, period. Some of them calls was terrible, period.

I thought you couldn’t even do that. I’m not even a referee, and I know that rule. So, somebody correct me if I’m wrong.

The NBA corrected him in the two-minute report, saying “After communicating with the Replay Center, the ruling on the floor of Raptors possession is overturned and the Warriors are awarded possession because the ball touches DeRozan’s (TOR) leg while his body is out of bounds before Curry (GSW) knocks the ball out. Referees were able to review two aspects of this out-of-bounds play since they were part of the same sequence.”

Then, the league fined him.

NBA release:

Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan has been fined $15,000 for public criticism of the officiating, it was announced today by Kiki VanDeWeghe, Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations.

The comments were made following the Raptors’ 127-125 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Saturday, Jan. 13

Saying “5-on-8” seems to be a secret code word for getting fined. I’m not sure whether the rest of DeRozan’s comments would have gotten him fined, but that phrase almost certainly did him in.

Kyle Lowry on plan to meet Ben Simmons after ejections: ‘Put it this way, I was back there’

AP Photo/Rich Schultz
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As Kyle Lowry and Ben Simmons were ejected late in the 76ers’ win over the Raptors yesterday, the players appeared to challenge each other to meet in back.

Lowry eagerly left the court and headed through the tunnel. Simmons appeared much more reluctant at that point.

Despite a report of a confrontation in the hallway, Simmons said nothing escalated, as he went to his locker room.

Michael Grange of Sportsnet

TKO.

Warriors complained of no hot water in showers in Cleveland

Michael Hickey/Getty Images
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The Cavaliers are clearly frustrated.

Did someone in Cleveland take out that frustration on the Warriors after they beat the Cavs last night?

Chris Haynes of ESPN:

Players were complaining about there being no hot water in the visiting locker room showers. When they walked in, they could be heard screaming in discomfort. Most of the players emerged shivering from taking a quick wash-off.

“Man, they got to do something in ‘The Q.’ Somebody call Bron!” Kevin Durant yelled, referring to LeBron James.

No one seemed angry; the situation was more humorous.

That’s the right approach. Whenever the hot water is out in a visiting locker room, the finger is pointed at the home team for sabotage. Sometimes, heating systems just fail.

Giannis Antetokounmpo assists fastbreak dunk with football-style long snap (video)

AP Photo/Nick Wass
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Giannis Antetokounmpo is scoring more in the post, the basketball analogue of football’s trenches.

Apparently, he’s taking the comparison to the next level.

In the Bucks’ win over the Wizards yesterday, Antetokounmpo played the part of a long-snapping center to set up Khris Middleton in transition.

NBC Sports Washington: