So who do you trust more, Adrian Wojnarowski’s sources or Lakers coach Mike Brown?
Thursday night word leaked out — via Wojnarowski and Marc Spears at Yahoo Sports — that the Lakers planned to play Dwight Howard for the first time on Sunday night, in a home preseason game against the Kings.
Friday Brown tried to throw a little cold water on that rumor. Via Mark Medina at the Daily News:
“If he practices tomorrow and our medical people at the end of practice say he can play, he’s going to play,” Brown said following the Lakers’ shootaround Friday at Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, where they will play the Sacramento Kings tonight in their fifth preseason game. “People keep asking me and that’s the answer that I’ve given. But people have taken that answer and assume Dwight’s playing. The funny thing about it is people that are printing that, there is a chance he may not play Sunday.”
For a week now Howard has gone full out in 5-on-5 scrimmages in practice and reports have been positive, my guess is he’ll be fine and play. Brown is saying what coaches have been trained to say to cover their… you get the idea.
Before all this leaked, Howard said he would be nervous before his first game.
“Like I told Steve (Nash), I think I’ll be a little nervous out there for the first time,” Howard said of his first game after he was acquired from the Orlando Magic on Aug. 10. “But he said he would help me through it and, hopefully, it will be OK….
“New town, new city, I think everybody is expecting a lot out of his team and they’re expecting a lot out of me,” Howard said. “So, I have to make sure I keep all of that out of my mind when I’m playing and just have fun.”
The Los Angeles Clippers had a rough go of things against the Sacramento Kings on Sunday. Up by 18 with more than five minutes to go, LA blew their lead and were left to watch as the Kings sealed the game late.
The final possession for Sacramento came on a missed corner 3-pointer by Clippers guard Jamal Crawford. The Kings got the outlet pass out on the rebound, but Ben McLemore took it to the rack and missed. That’s when Willie Cauley-Stein stepped in, cleaned up the board, and put the game-winning shot home with less than two seconds left.
Los Angeles lost in spectacular fashion, and became the only team this season to lose given their game situation.
Here’s a compilation the NBA put together of Sacramento’s epic comeback:
Meanwhile, Chris Paul called it the worst regular season loss of his career.
The Clippers peaked too soon. Like, the first 20 games of the season too soon.
Russell Westbrook had yet another triple-double on Sunday. The Oklahoma City Thunder star notched 13 assists in the loss to the Houston Rockets, 137-125, and one of them came on a nifty pass to teammate Victor Oladipo.
The play happened with the Thunder on the fastbreak early in the third quarter. Westbrook was moving from left-to-right across the middle of the floor with the ball while Oladipo streaked down the right wing.
With the Rockets defense collapsing, Westbrook reached halfcourt and fired a bounce pass that sliced through the opposition.
Oladipo finished with the clean dunk.
Still not sure it beats this one, but I think we’ll have to compare once the season comes to a close.
The race between James Harden and Russell Westbrook for the 2017 NBA MVP has narrowed to a two-man race toward the end of the season. The Oklahoma City Thunder star is averaging at triple-double this year, and the Houston Rockets guard is doing things nobody has ever done on a basketball court before.
It’s a tough decision to decide between them, so much so that even former Los Angeles Lakers great and 2008 NBA MVP Kobe Bryant can’t do it.
Speaking on ESPN on Sunday, Bryant said he thought the league might have to just bite the bullet on Westbrook vs. Harden.
“We might see our first co-MVPs this year,” said Bryant.
That would be a huge step for the league, but I’m not entirely sure they would do it. There have been co-NBA All-Star Game MVPs in years past, but never league MVP.
Still, can you decide between Russ and Harden? The Mamba can’t.
Houston Rockets center Nene is from Brazil, but on Sunday against the Oklahoma City Thunder the South American native went full euro.
On a fastbreak possession, Nene took on Thunder big man Enes Kanter near the rim and absolutely shook him with a nasty eurostep.
The play was so good that it forced Oklahoma City to call a timeout as James Harden and the rest of the Rockets bench met Nene on the court to celebrate.