Los Angeles Lakers v Oklahoma City Thunder - Game Two

Steve Blake says he’ll be back for the Lakers this Tuesday


The lack of depth at the point guard position is pretty far down the list as far as reasons the Lakers have had trouble stringing together a series of wins this season.

Nevertheless, any help would be more than welcome at this point, and it appears that some will be on the way early next week.

Steve Blake expects to be back with the team Tuesday when L.A. hosts the Hornets. He broke the news himself in a post to his official Twitter account on Saturday.

Blake has been sidelined since Nov. 11 with an abdominal strain that required surgery, followed by dealing with pain in his groin that required special plasma and cortisone shots to the area to relieve the discomfort.

Lakers head coach Mike D’Antoni didn’t confirm that Blake would be ready to return on Tuesday, but did say that at least he’s got a shot.

From Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles:

“He’s going to play pretty soon,” Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni said when asked about Blake after practice. “I don’t know when that is, but he’s working his way back. I think he wants to get in some running (Saturday) so we’ll see how that goes. Everyday will be a test for him. If he keeps passing those barriers, then you’ll see him on the court pretty soon.”

Blake has played in only seven of his team’s games this season, while averaging 5.1 points, 2.4 rebounds, and 3.4 assists in 26 minutes per contest.

Carmelo Anthony says he can play at high level 4-5 more years

USA Basketball Men's National Team Training Camp

Carmelo Anthony can flat-out score the rock — that has never been the question. Even hurting last season for many of the 40 games he played, he averaged 24.2 points a game, had a true shooting percentage of 53.1 percent (right near the league average) while having the entire weight of the Knicks offense on his shoulders (32.2 usage rate, fifth highest in the NBA). When people (or players) talk about him being overrated, the discussion turns to defense or if he makes his teammates better. But there should be no doubt Anthony is an elite scorer.

He thinks he will be for a while longer — like another five years. Via Ian Begley of ESPN:

In fact, the 31-year-old Knicks star is confident that he can play at a high level for the next “four or five years.”

“Without a doubt. Without a doubt,” Anthony said after the Knicks’ final training camp practice on Saturday.

The Knicks better hope that’s true, they already made that bet with that massive five-year contract they gave him last summer.

Anthony’s age combined with him coming off knee surgery have a lot of people — myself included — expecting him to take a step back. Not a big one, but he is coming up at the point in his career where some open shots he used to get are now contested because he’s half-a-step slower, and some of those looks don’t fall as often. His jumper isn’t suddenly going to look like Rajon Rondo‘s, ‘Melo is going to get his points, but he may not be as efficient.

Fortunately, the Knicks have an improved supporting cast around him this season. That should take some offensive load off his shoulders, and maybe the Knicks offense will see better ball movement and start to resemble the triangle. If it’s just more isolation Anthony, it’s not going to be pretty.

Kings pick up option on G Ben McLemore

Ben McLemore, Rodney Hood
1 Comment

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) The Sacramento have picked up the 2016-17 option on guard Ben McLemore‘s contract.

General manager Vlade Divac announced the move Saturday.

McLemore was Sacramento’s first-round pick in 2013. He averaged 12.1 points, 2.9 rebounds and 1.7 assists last season.