Report: Nerlens Noel to sign shoe deal with Reebok

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The conventional wisdom is big men don’t sell shoes, attacking perimeter do — Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Derrick Rose.

But Nerlens Noel, the center out of Kentucky who will play with the Sixers once he gets healthy (remember the knee injury last season) thinks he can be the exception to the rule.

Noel has agreed to a deal with Reebok, reports SLAM. Reebok is trying to up its NBA presence and is reportedly going to add a few other players to its roster (it already has a handful).

Rookie center Nerlens Noel has tentatively agreed to an endorsement deal with Reebok, according to sources within the company….

“I don’t think I’m just a prototypical big man,” Noel said when reached on the phone at the shoot. “I think I’ll be able to sell shoes.”

Maybe. Noel was talked about as a possible No. 1 pick because of his potential as an athletic, shot blocking big who could run the floor and fit in a more modern offense. However, on draft night he fell all the way to No. 6 where the Hornets drafted him then traded him to the Sixers as part of the Jrue Holiday deal. Philadelphia is a perfect fit — they are rebuilding and don’t mind struggling this season, so Noel can take his time getting back on the court.

When he does, he’ll be wearing Reeboks.

Other guys wearing Reebok this season are Jason Terry (Nets), Isaiah Thomas (Kings) and Jameer Nelson (Magic).

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.)