Houston Rockets v Chicago Bulls

Dwight Howard likely out for Rockets Thursday due to ankle injury

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Dwight Howard has been healthy this season, and with that played like the guy the Lakers thought they were getting a year ago. Houston has looked good and improving with him in the paint.

But he was out Monday night against Utah with an ankle strain suffered against Miami on Sunday.

Now he is going to miss a second game as well, coach Kevin McHale said.

This is where Houston’s depth comes in handy, you will see a lot more Omer Asik. Also you will see Terrence Jones on Kevin Love in an interesting matchup. Still the Rockets will miss the 18.6 points on 57 percent shooting and the 12.4 boards a night Howard brings.

Getting healthy is what should matter most to the Rockets, they don’t want this to linger. Right now they are pretty much locked in on the four seed, two back of a hot Clippers team for the third seed and 1.5 up on slumping Portland in the five spot. Golden State is two games back in the six slot.

With the NCAA tournament in full swing the NBA stops its Thursday night TNT NBA showcase games for a couple weeks to let the next crop of NBA stars — and maybe a Cinderella — take the spotlight. So that Rockets/Timberwolves showdown wasn’t going to be on national television, you’re not missing anything.

All Chandler Parsons wants for Christmas is healthy knees

Memphis Grizzlies forward Chandler Parsons poses for a picture on NBA basketball media day Monday, Sept. 26, 2016, in Memphis, Tenn. Parsons signed with the Grizzlies in July. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
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It almost fits the song: “All I wants for Christmas is healthy knees, healthy knees, healthy knees.”

Chandler Parsons took to Twitter to answer questions from fans, and there were a few good answers in there but my favorite was this one:

Parsons has played in just six games for the Grizzlies this season, missing the start of the season to recover from off-season knee surgery, then now he has missed the last eight games with a knee bone bruise. The banged up Grizzlies could really use his shot creation back in the lineup.

As for other good questions/answers there was this combo, with a little help from ESPN’s Zach Lowe:

And then there’s this for the haters.

Sit back and watch the top 10 dunks from the first five weeks of NBA season

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Who doesn’t love a good dunk compilation?

Well, somebody probably just said “bah, humbug” but is that the person you really want to hang out with?

The fine folks at NBA.com put together the Top 10 dunks of October and November, and when Rudy Gobert dunking over Kristaps Porzingis is all the way down at 10, you know it’s a good list. Put off starting your Christmas shopping, at least for another 2:44, and watch the video.

Want to watch Chance the Rapper throw dodgeballs at mascots? Here you go.

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Want to watch Chance the Rapper throw dodgeballs at mascots? Of course you do. How is that even a question?

Above you can see just that from Chicago Friday night (where Dwyane Wade, Jimmy Butler and the Bulls knocked off the Cavaliers). Benny the Bull is on his side as well, while the Cubs’ mascot and others try and stay out of the way.

I’ll take this over another kids’ dribbling contest any day.

LaMarcus Aldridge, Manu Ginobili hustling saves lead to Spurs bucket (VIDEO)

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That’s about the most Spurs play ever.

During the third quarter of San Antonio’s win over Washington Friday night, LaMarcus Aldridge saved the ball from going out-of-bounds on the baseline, he threw it out high to Manu Ginobili, who had to leap and save it from going into the backcourt. Two hustle plays. From there the Spurs whipped the ball around the perimeter, and it ended up back to Aldridge on the baseline, where he nailed the 12-foot jumper.

Eventually, the Spurs would get a Kawhi Leonard jumper to give them the victory.