Portland Trail Blazers v Houston Rockets - Game One

MRI finds no new damage to Patrick Beverley’s knee, he likely plays Game 2


UPDATE 2:43 pm: Houston has officially confirmed that there was an MRI of Patrick Beverley’s knee “which revealed no acute issues. He will likely be available for Game 2 Wednesday.”

12:38 pm: This is very good news for the Houston Rockets.

In overtime of the Trail Blazers win in Game 1 over the Rockets Sunday night, Patrick Beverley banged knees with LaMarcus Aldridge. It was Beverley’s right knee, the one where he had a torn meniscus that caused him to miss time earlier this season. He hobbled through the rest of the game but the team was concerned this was something serious.

But the MRI found no new damage, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.

Hopefully his knee is well enough not to impede his ability to skip down the court.

This is huge because the Raptors need Beverley to contain the dangerous Damian Lillard. As our own Dan Feldman noted, in 38 minutes with Beverley on the court, Lillard scored 18 points. In the eight minutes with Beverley on the bench, Lillard scored 13 points and was far more aggressive in attacking and creating offense. Jeremy Lin simply cannot defend him.

This is a tight series and an injury such as this would tip the balance of power.

Gordon Hayward goes behind Jordan Clarkson’s back with dribble

Gordon Hayward, Nick Young
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Utah’s Gordon Hayward abused the Lakers’ Jordan Clarkson on this play.

First, Hayward reads and steals Clarkson’s poor feed into the post intended for Kobe Bryant, then going up the sideline he takes his dribble behind Clarkson’s back to keep going. It all ends in a Rudy Gobert dunk.

Three quick takeaways here:

1) Gordon Hayward is a lot better than many fans realize. He can lead this team.

2) It’s still all about the development with Clarkson, and that’s going to mean some hard lessons.

3) Hayward may have the best hair in the NBA, even if it’s going a bit Macklemore.

(Hat tip reddit)

Could Tristan Thompson’s holdout last months? Windhorst says yes.

2015 NBA Finals - Game Five

VIZZINI: “So, it is down to you. And it is down to me.”
MAN IN BLACK nods and comes nearer…
MAN IN BLACK: “Perhaps an arrangement can be reached.”
VIZZINI: “There will be no arrangement…”
MAN IN BLACK: “But if there can be no arrangement, then we are at an impasse.”

That farcical scene from The Princess Bride pretty much sums up where we are with the Tristan Thompson holdout with the Cleveland Cavaliers, minus the Iocane powder. (Although that scene was a battle of wits in the movie and this process seems to lack much wit.) The Cavaliers have put a five-year, $80 million offer on the table. Thompson wants a max deal (or at least a more than has been offered), but he also doesn’t want to play for the qualifying offer and didn’t sign it. LeBron James just wants the two sides just to get it done.

Brian Windhorst of ESPN thinks LeBron could be very disappointed.

Windhorst was on the Zach Lowe podcast at Grantland (which you should be listening to anyway) and had this to say about the Thompson holdout:

“I actually believe it will probably go months. This will go well into the regular season.”

Windhorst compared it to a similar situation back in 2007 with Anderson Varejao, which eventually only broke because the then Charlotte Bobcats signed Varejao to an offer sheet. Thompson is a restricted free agent, meaning the Cavaliers can match any offer, but only Portland and Philadelphia have the cap space right now to offer him a max contract. Neither team has shown any interest in doing so.

And so we wait. And we may be waiting a while.