Samuel Dalembert suspended by Dallas Mavericks for oversleeping, arriving late to workout

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Samuel Dalembert overslept, keeping him from a Dallas Mavericks practice.

Samuel Dalembert overslept, keeping him from a Dallas Mavericks practice.

This is not a recording.

The center slept too long and was late to a Mavericks workout, which caused Dallas to suspend him for its 92-80 loss to the New York Knicks on Sunday, according to Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News – the second time Dalembert faced team discipline for oversleeping. It wasn’t a complete repeat of the previous incident, though.

Last time, he missed the entire shootaround. This time, he was just late to a workout.

Last time, he was removed from the starting lineup. This time, he was suspended for the entire game.

Last time, he said, “I’m very disappointed in myself.” This time, he said, “I just feel ashamed of it.”

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Dalembert, via Sefko:

“I was late for my lifting,” Dalembert said. “I just feel ashamed of it. We’re taking steps to make sure that doesn’t happen. And we’ll move on. Just make sure I have second options. And some people helping me in those situations. It’s a sleeping thing for me. We’re working on it. I can’t sleep at night. When that happens to me, I try to go to bed really early and situations like this happen.”

It would be in the Mavericks’ best interest to help Dalembert solve his sleeping issues, because they need him – and they know it.

Dalembert has a history of stepping over the line. The Mavericks signed him, anyway.

Rick Carlisle called Dalembert out of shape before the season. Dalembert still began the year as the Mavericks’ starting center.

Dallas tried to end its reliance on Dalembert during the season. But after his DNP-CD, not only did Dalembert return to the rotation, he was back in the starting lineup shortly after.

Carlisle said this latest punishment would be only the one-game suspension, which sounds fair – and practical.

The Mavericks need Dalembert’s defense as long they’re starting Jose Calderon and Monta Ellis in the backcourt. For all the offensive skills those guards have, they’re defensively deficient. A shot blocker like Dalembert protects them much more than Dallas’ other two centers, DeJuan Blair and Bernard James, do.

When Calderon and Ellis play together, the Mavericks’ defensive rating hinges greatly on which center joins them on the court – ranging from so-so to bad to horrific.

  • Dalembert: 104.0
  • Blair: 107.4
  • James: 134.4

Dalembert is not an ideal player in any sense, but at this point, the Mavericks have to ride out his ups and downs – and snoozes.

Joel Embiid upgrades himself from 69% to 81%: ‘Shoutout to Jalen Rose’

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A story in three parts:

1. After posting 46-15-7-7 in a win over the Lakers, frequently injured 76ers center Joe Embiid declared himself to be 69%:

2. ESPN analyst Jalen Rose called that joke “unprofessional:”

3. Embiid upgraded his status to 81% with a “shoutout to Jalen Rose:”

In case you didn’t get the joke.

Celtics’ Kyrie Irving: “It was a nice streak. But it was time to come to an end.”

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The Celtics established themselves as one of the NBA’s elite teams, a contender for the Eastern Conference title, during their 16-game win streak.

However, that hot streak to start the season will matter as much as Thanksgiving leftovers in the back of the refrigerator in April by the time the playoffs roll around. This is a team that still has work to do.

Which is what Kyrie Irving was getting at in this post-loss quote from Friday night, via Israel Gutierrez of ESPN.

“There’s still a lot to accomplish going forward,” Irving said. “It was a nice streak. But it was time to come to an end.”

This team still needs to get better and more consistent. The Celtics had to come from behind in the fourth quarter in eight of the 16 wins, and while the team defense was impressive the offense still can be hit and miss. Al Horford and Kyrie Irving play well off each other, but this is still the 20th ranked offense in the NBA. They are taking more long midrange jumpers than most coaches want, but the bigger challenge is they have not been finishing around the basket.

Titles are not won in November. Irving gets that. Jayson Tatum will hit the rookie wall at some point (they all do) and he needs to prove he can break through. Al Horford is playing maybe the best ball of his career and needs to keep it up. The Celtics need to keep their defensive focus (the fundamentals are there to have a top five defense). I could go on but you get the point, and so does Irving — there is a lot of work for this team to do.

Boston is off to a fantastic start, but it’s just that.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich: I’ve never seen injury like Kawhi Leonard’s

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Gregg Popovich is a basketball lifer.

He’s the NBA’s most experienced active head coach. Before that, he was the Spurs’ general manager. Before that, he was an NBA assistant. Before that, he was a college head coach and assistant. Before that, he was a college player. Before that, he was a youth player.

The San Antonio coach has seen everything.

Except the right quadriceps tendinopathy suffered by Kawhi Leonard, whom Popovich said more than a week would return “sooner rather than later.” Yet, Leonard still hasn’t played this season.

Popovich, via Michael C. Wright of ESPN:

“Never, never,” Popovich said when asked whether he has seen such a condition hampering one of his players. “What’s really strange is that [point guard] Tony [Parker] has the same injury, but even worse. They had to go operate on his quad tendon and put it back together or whatever they did to it. So to have two guys, that’s pretty incredible. I had never seen it before those guys.”

“I keep saying sooner rather than later,” Popovich said jokingly. “It’s kind of like being a politician. It’s all baloney, doesn’t mean anything.”

The 26-year-old Leonard is one of the NBA’s biggest on-court stars. He might be the league’s best defender, and he has built himself into an offensive force. The Spurs (11-7) have fared fine without him so far, but they’ll need him to accomplish their main goals – this year and beyond.

Hopefully, Leonard’s health is better than it sounds here, because Popovich’s answer sure isn’t encouraging.

Tim Hardaway Jr. calls fallen ref safe rather than defend shot (video)

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The Knicks went on a 28-0 run.

They earned the right to showboat late in their win over the Raptors last night.

Tim Hardaway Jr. called a ref, who slipped on the baseline, safe rather than contest Serge Ibaka‘s 3-pointer. Perfection!