Report: Ben McLemore was out of shape for recent workouts

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Kansas’ Ben McLemore was pretty much a top three pick on everybody’s board a month ago, but he may be sliding down some boards right now.

In part that is because the smooth-shooting guard out of Kansas didn’t help his cause in some recent workouts, reports Chad Ford at ESPN.com (Insider).

Multiple sources told me that his workout in Phoenix was not impressive; he wasn’t in shape, and he struggled to keep up in the workout. I heard similar things in Orlando. McLemore is in a tug-of-war right now between adviser Rodney Blackstock and his agency Rivals. It’s kept McLemore out of the gym and for the most part, out of workouts. How much will all of this affect the draft stock?

Probably not that much, because teams are drafting on talent (and think it’s the people around McLemore pulling him in different directions that is hurting his cause).

There’s no doubt McLemore is talented. He’s a 6’4” shooting guard, with a silky-smooth shot. He’s a late bloomer and a guy you can say the most overused of draft buzzword about — upside — and be right. But he isn’t great at creating his own shot so he needs to be paired with a point guard (or other shot creator). Our man Rob Dauster at CollegeBasketballTalk has said he thinks the ceiling for McLemore is the 2010 version of Ray Allen — a knock down shooter who can do a few other things and makes a great third player on a very good team.

In this draft, that likely keeps him up high. DraftExpress still has him at No. 2 to Orlando. He’s likely still top three, but we will see.

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.)