After missing a couple games with an adductor strain — two games that were close losses for Dallas where the calls didn’t go their way — Dirk Nowitzki expects to be back in the lineup Monday night when they face Oklahoma City.
“I feel OK,” Nowitzki said after Sunday’s workout in Phoenix. “I went through most of the stuff, a little running, a little shooting. It was pulling a little bit, but as long as it doesn’t grab on me and completely tighten up, it’s fine. Obviously, the meds had time to kick in over the weekend.
“If there’s no setbacks, and I go through the whole shootaround, hopefully I’ll get going tomorrow.”
Dallas needs him back. While the big German has averaged 14.8 points and 5.5 rebounds per game this season (well off recent averages) he’s looked like his old self of late. And they need that guy if they have any dreams of a playoff run.
Dwight Howard pushes Al Horford, gets technical, later ejected for hanging on rim
It ended up working out for Atlanta — the Hawks went on a 22-11 run after Dwight Howard was ejected, then hung on for a comfortable win 114-98.
Still, Howard found a way to get tossed. He did it two separate technical fouls in the third quarter. The first came when he shoved Al Horford after the Celtic big fouled Howard under the basket (always a smart move rather than give up a dunk).
The next came a few minutes later when Howard slammed then pulled himself up like a pull-up on the rim, an automatic tech every time.
With Kyle Lowry out until around the start of the playoffs, a lot is going to be asked of DeMar DeRozan. Monday night at Madison Square Garden, he delivered.
The Raptors needed a bucket as time ran down, not only got the ball to DeRozan but got the switch so Derrick Rose was guarding him, and that allowed the Raptors star to get to his spot, rise up and bury the midrange jumper for the win.
It capped off an impressive 37-point night for DeRozan — he’s going to need to do more of this in the coming weeks.
Kevin Hart rings bell before start of Sixers game vs. Warriors
Michael Beasley was getting back up court to try and defend a LeBron James drive to the basket early in the clock Monday night when he took an awkward step and appears to hyperextend his knee. You can see the video above. He tried to leave the floor under his own power but had to be helped back to the locker room by teammates.
Beasley has been solid off the bench for the Bucks this season, averaging 9.7 points a game with a and with a PER of 17.6 (above the league average). They would miss him in the rotation as they try to make a playoff push if he has to miss any time.