Indiana Pacers' Danny Granger attempts a lay up against Houston Rockets' Terrence Jones in the second quarter of their NBA pre-season basketball game in Taipei Arena

Pacers shut down Danny Granger the rest of the preseason


He’d been back for a couple of weeks and looked pretty good as he started to shake the rust off, but now Danny Granger is sidelined again.

The Pacers forward strained his left calf Friday night against the Bulls, leaving the game. Monday the team announced that he sat out practice and would not play in anymore preseason games.

Being cautious here is the right thing to do, but this is a second calf strain this preseason from Granger, and it has to make Pacers fans a little uncomfortable.

Indiana is still trying to see if Granger and Paul George (and Roy Hibbert, for that matter) can mesh and make this a much more dangerous team. If not, he’s an expiring contract and a heck of a trade chip — but only if he can get on the court and play. Only if he can show he can still be the All-Star level player he was before his rash of injuries.

We were always going to find out the answer to the Granger question during the regular season, we’re just not going to get any more preseason clues.

Stan Van Gundy rips ‘selfish’ Pistons

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The Pistons had just 19 assists – to 22 turnovers – in their 93-83 loss to the Nets last night.

Stan Van Gundy was none too pleased.

On offensive problems:

I told them in there – that was the first thing – we’re not playing together at all. I thought it was a very selfish performance, and guys wouldn’t just pass the ball to open men. They wanted to see if they could take one more dribble to get their own shot, so the passing angles were gone. I just thought we forced play after play after play. We’re not willing to move the ball

On Reggie Jackson, who scored seven points on 3-of-10 shooting with six assists and six turnovers, and was coming off Achilles soreness:

He was not good at all. He was forcing everything.

On injuries to point guards – Jackson, Brandon Jennings and Steve Blake – hindering the team’s flow in practice and that carrying over to the game:

We could probably make a lot of excuses for our guys, but we were selfish.

Van Gundy is clearly trying to send a message, and the preseason is the best time to do it.

But it’s somewhat troubling he had to do it after this game.

Eight of the 10 Pistons who played against Brooklyn project to make the regular-season rotation. Joel Anthony played over Aron Baynes, and once healthy, Blake could challenge Spencer Dinwiddie to become back up point guard – at least until Jennings is ready. Otherwise, Detroit – with Jackson, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Marcus Morris, Ersan Ilyasova, Andre Drummond, Jodie Meeks, Stanley Johnson and Anthony Tolliver – looked similar to its opening-night lineup.

Van Gundy is blunt, but he doesn’t tell the media things he hasn’t already directly told his players. They appreciate that.

He’d appreciate them getting this message.

Report: Dwight Howard didn’t have offseason surgery

Dwight Howard
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Dwight Howard said he played with a torn MCL and meniscus in the Western Conference finals – pretty shocking news that few knew what to make of.

So, um, did he have offseason surgery?

Calvin Watkins of ESPN:

Howard obviously feels great about his health now, so maybe this was the right course.

We’ll never how Howard would have performed if fully healthy, but he averaged 14.4 points and 14.4 rebounds in 35.1 minutes per game against the Warriors during the conference finals. How bad could the injuries have been?