Indiana has signed Andrew Bynum but they are not going to rush him along, coach Frank Vogel has said Bynum will not play until sometime after the All-Star break. They don’t need to rush because they already have the best record in the East and the best defense in the NBA. Anything they get from him is just sprinkles on top of the icing already on the cake. Bynum was a low risk pickup because if he does workout he improves their bench and if he doesn’t they don’t pay him much and he doesn’t join Miami.
Bynum went through his first practice with the Pacers Friday and spoke to the media afterward, above is the conversation. Here are a few highlights.
• What did Bynum do with his time off between the Cavaliers and Pacers? “Really just relaxing at home, that’s it.” But he’s been keeping a workout regimen going, right? “Not really.” He did say he tried to eat right. So there’s that.
• “Getting comfortable with the guys, that’s the biggest part. Then when I’m given an opportunity go play hard.”
• To his critics that say he doesn’t love the game. “That’s what their going to say, I can’t fight it. All I can do is just go play hard and put points by my name.”
• “My motivation right now is the opportunity to win, because that’s the most fun, and just being around a positive atmosphere.”
• On his time in Cleveland, who traded him to Chicago (who cut him). “The atmosphere over there wasn’t one that promoted positive energy and wanting to come in, and it was just tough.” Spoken like a guy who played and grew up under Phil Jackson.
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.
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.
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.