Tolliver, Pietrus both say they are close to contracts

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Time is its own kind of pressure. And some of the unsigned NBA veterans out there are really starting to feel it. They are feeling the pressure to make a decision.

Anthony Tolliver and Mickael Pietrus are two of those guys, and both say they are close to a decision.

With Lou Amundson having agreed to terms with the Timberwolves, that door has been shut to Tolliver. So he is narrowing his options and we should soon know his choice, reports Chris Tomasson of Fox Sports Florida.

Tolliver said it’s down to Atlanta, Phoenix and Minnesota for his services and he’ll decide by Tuesday or Wednesday at the latest. He said all three teams have offered a one-year deal for the minimum.

“A lot of veterans are taking the minimum,’’ Tolliver said. “That might be the new normal.’’ Tolliver made $2.05 million last season. But he will have to take a cut to $915,852.

It is the new normal. Welcome to the new CBA.

As for Pietrus, he doesn’t like the new normal but added he is down to two teams, reports basketsession.com. I would expect a decision soon, the money is not going to change for him.

Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook go head-to-head, literally (video)

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This sure didn’t look like just another game for Kevin Durant – and not only because the Thunder beat the Warriors for the first time since he left.

The 108-91 Oklahoma City victory didn’t look like just another game for Russell Westbrook (34 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists and four steals), either.

Harrison Barnes banks in game-winning, buzzer-beating 3-pointer (video)

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With the shot clock off in the fourth quarter and the game tied, Grizzlies big JaMychal Green put back Tyreke Evans‘ miss with a clutch flush. There’s a very fine line between ensuring the last shot and leaving time for an offensive rebound, and Memphis threated it almost perfectly.

Emphasis on “almost.”

The Grizzlies left the Mavericks 0.5 seconds, which Harrison Barnes used to bank in a 3-pointer – off a pinpoint bounce pass by Dennis Smith Jr. – to give Dallas a 95-94 win.

Heat snap Celtics’ 16-game winning streak

AP Photo/Lynne Sladky
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The Celtics didn’t have another comeback in them.

After overcoming a 13-point fourth-quarter deficit against the Mavericks on Monday to extend its winning streak to 16 games, Boston lost to the Heat tonight, 104-98. The streak ends as the NBA’s longest since the Hawks won 19 straight during the 2014-15 season.

The Celtics trailed Miami by 16 in the fourth quarter then cut the deficit to only one with three minutes left. But Dion Waiters hit back-to-back 3-pointers, helping the Heat pull away.

Goran Dragic (27 points) and Waiters (26 points) led Miami, which needed a reason to feel good after losing three of four to fall to 7-9.

The Celtics, on the other hand, still have a four-game cushion over the rest of the Eastern Conference. This might help them regain focus.

Serge Ibaka gets dunked on by Enes Kanter, hit in face by ball (video)

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Is Enes Kanter mad Serge Ibaka rifted with his family?

(No, not this family. That family.)