Memphis Grizzlies v Portland Trail Blazers

Blazers’ Nicolas Batum suffers nasal contusion

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UPDATE 6:20 p.m.: Batum’s nose is not broken after all, according to an updated report. It’s being called a nasal contusion, and it hasn’t yet been determined if it will require a protective mask.

4:30 p.m.: Well, we know he can’t wear a black mask to protect his face going forward.

Portland’s starting swingman Nicolas Batum broke his nose in the Blazers’ loss to the Dallas Mavericks his agent told Chris Haynes of

In the third quarter Monta Ellis drove the lane and used his off arm to clear out space, and in doing so incidentally elbowed Batum in the face.

Batum was immediately rushed after the game to get a checkup and the results came back as expected considering he had a noticeable dip in the center of his nose. The team will now seek a protection covering in advance of Sunday’s game against the Houston Rockets, (Batum’s agent Bouna) Ndiaye said.

Batum is a solid wing player for Portland who has averaged 12.9 points, 6.9 rebounds and 5.2 assists a game this season, plus he is a long and athletic defender.

He is not expected to miss any time. The Trail Blazers could use him — they are basically tied with the Rockets and Clippers (all 3.5 games back of conference leader Oklahoma City) and having home court in the first round will require some improved play over the 6-4 Portland is in its last 10.

Derrick Rose being back for start of season in question

Fred Hoiberg, Derrick Rose
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The Bulls have said Derrick Rose is about a week away from returning after suffering a facial fracture this preseason.

The start of the NBA season is two weeks from today (Oct. 27).

So Rose will be ready to go when the Bulls start their season that first night against Cleveland, right? Don’t bet on it, says Vincent Goodwill of, quoting coach Fred Hoiberg.

The opening night projection for a Derrick Rose return is a bit murky at this point, as the Bulls are taking a cautious approach to his recovery with Fred Hoiberg essentially ruling him out for the rest of the preseason.

“Most likely (out for the preseason),” Hoiberg said….

In fact, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Rose sit out the first handful of games, as the Bulls start the season with a three-game in four-night stretch starting Oct. 27 against the Cleveland Cavaliers, which is in two weeks.

“That will be in consideration, sure,” Hoiberg said. “We gotta make sure, he really hasn’t done anything and that will be a good two or three weeks where he has total inactivity, so just to throw him back out there going 100 percent with his speed and everything, you just don’t want to take any risks, chances, where it could be a lingering issue.”

Just what TNT and the NBA hoped for with an opening night Bulls vs. Cavaliers showcase: Kirk Hinrich vs. Mo Williams. (Don’t forget Kyrie Irving will miss the start of the season recovering from his knee surgery.)

Of course, this is the smart play for the Bulls who need to be thinking about getting Rose fully healthy and focusing on what condition he will be come April 27, not Oct. 27.

And of course, a lot of Bulls fans who are down on Rose will slam him for this. Even though the injury was a freak accident and the team is right to be patient.

Rose could play opening night, if he gets back to practice next week and can get closer to basketball shape. But I wouldn’t bet on it.

Stephen Curry apologizes for Warriors’ health, playoff path, success

Stephen Curry, DeAndre Jordan, Spencer Hawes

Draymond Green wasn’t the only Warrior firing back at perceived critics today.

A sarcastic Stephen Curry joined the fun (and to his credit, did so much more appropriately than his teammate).


I just want to say, I apologize for us being healthy. I apologize for us playing who’s in front of us. I apologize for all the accolades we’ve received as a team and individually. I’m very, truly sorry. We’ll rectify that situation this year.

We try to have fun with it.

What the Warriors refuse to realize: Acknowledging the fortunate breaks they received en route to their championship is not the same as saying they didn’t deserve their championship. It’s not insulting them.

Of course, the Warriors aren’t obligated to fully understand the critiques. They’re incentivized to spin the comments into motivation.

Mission clearly accomplished.