New York Knicks v Miami Heat

Randy Foye blocks Carmelo Anthony’s shot at the buzzer, Knicks lose eighth straight (VIDEO)


The Knicks battled back from a 10-point fourth quarter deficit in Denver on Friday, and had a chance to send the game into overtime in the final possession of regulation.

Carmelo Anthony waived off the screen and went to an isolation set against Randy Foye, and given the fact that Anthony had a good four-inch height advantage over his defender, backing him down and then turning for the fadeaway didn’t seem like a terrible idea.

But Foye rose to the occasion quite literally, getting a piece of Anthony’s shot and the result was a 97-95 win for the Nuggets that sent New York to its eighth straight loss.

From Marc Berman of the New York Post:

“I didn’t get it done,’’ Anthony said in a rare moment of taking full blame for a loss. “That’s it. My teammates did a great job of getting us in that position, giving me a chance to tie a game or go for the win. I didn’t pull through tonight. I’ll take that one.’’ …

“Once I looked and saw I had a smaller guy on me, my thing was just to shoot over him. I know what I wanted to do and the spot I wanted to get to. It just didn’t happen. I didn’t complete the mission today.’’

The Knicks are 3-12 on the season, and in the West that might be too big of a hole to overcome in terms of being able to string together enough wins to earn a spot in the playoffs.

But the East is so dreadful that despite the horrific start, New York finds itself just three games out of first place in the Atlantic Division, currently led by a Raptors team that owns a record of 6-9.

Thabo Sefolosha’s lawyer: White police officer targeted black Hawks forward

Thabo Sefolosha
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NEW YORK (AP) — A lawyer representing a professional basketball player arrested outside a New York City nightclub has told a jury his client was targeted because he’s black.

Attorney Alex Spiro said Tuesday in Manhattan Criminal Court that a white police officer saw a black man in a hoodie when he confronted the Atlanta Hawks’ Thabo Sefolosha on April 8.

Sefolosha was arrested while leaving a Manhattan nightclub following a stabbing. He subsequently suffered a season-ending leg fracture after a confrontation with police.

A prosecutor said in opening statements that Sefolosha called an officer who repeatedly told him and others to leave a “midget.”

Sefolosha pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor obstructing government administration, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest charges. The Swiss citizen declined a plea deal from prosecutors.


DeMar DeRozan says he hates talking about free agency, takes pride in Raptors longevity

DeMar DeRozan
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DeMar DeRozan has a $10,050,000 player option for 2016-17. Given the rapidly escalating salary cap, it’s a practical certainty DeRozan will opt out and get a major raise.

But he says he doesn’t want to talk about it.

DeRozan, via Eric Koreen of the National Post:

“I hate that, honestly,” DeRozan said in a one-on-one interview. “I never speak about it. With me, I’ve always been that one player: I’ve been loyal. I’ve been every single thing you can think of here. I think people don’t understand how much pride I take in playing (in Toronto). A lot of times when I do get asked that, it kind of frustrates me.

“Everyday I wake up, I take pride in being the longest Raptor here. People bring up third or whatever in franchise scoring — there is so much stuff like that.”

This sounds awfully similar to LaMarcus Aldridge, who stated his desire last year to become the great Trail Blazer ever and then signed with the Spurs this summer.

Things change, and the impracticality of an extension ensures DeRozan will hit free agency. I believe he’s devoted to the Raptors right now, but his loyalty might change in the next nine months – especially once he sees contract offers from other suitors.

Toronto’s interest in DeRozan might fluctuate, too. He’s a nice player, but the Raptors haven’t won a playoff series with him despite winning the division the last two years. Depending how this season goes, Masai Ujiri might want to rework the roster significantly next summer, and letting DeRozan walk could create major cap space.

I believe DeRozan wants to return to the Raptors, and I believe they want to keep him. But so much can change between now and when both sides must make that call.