Donald T. Sterling, Rochelle

Donald Sterling saga could be in holding pattern for a while

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Shelly Sterling is asking a court to verify her claim that she can sell the Clippers.

Proceedings began today, but they could take a while.

Dan Woike of The Orange County Register:

Michael Martinez and Linda Hall of CNN:

She also asked for an expedited hearing if the court couldn’t rule outright on her petition, said Pierce O’Donnell, Shelly Sterling’s attorney.

A hearing could be held in a week or two, O’Donnell said.

Update: Ramona Shelburne of ESPN:

As a reminder, the stakes are high for Shelly. If she loses this stage, the NBA will vote to remove Donald – and her with him – as the Clippers’ owner. That means the NBA will sell the team and give the Sterlings the proceeds, and Shelly won’t have a chance to negotiate herself a place in the franchise’s future with Steve Ballmer as the owner.

But the NBA almost assuredly won’t hold that vote unless Shelly is ruled not to control the trust that owns the team. If that trial won’t even begin until next month, not much of significance will likely happen in the interim.

There will be a lot of bluster, and Sterling’s ridiculous lawsuit against the NBA – a separate issue – will proceed. But the Clippers will remain the Sterlings’ until this aspect of the case wraps up.

Knicks allow John Wall to grab clutch rebound, score on break to ice game (VIDEO)

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The New York Knicks couldn’t get out of their own way on Thursday night, even with a historic performance from Carmelo Anthony. With the Washington Wizards in town, it was John Wall‘s finishing ability that pushed the Wiz over New York, 113-110.

The final 45 seconds were hectic, as Wall took the lead for Washington with just 32 seconds left after drawing a foul on Carmelo.

Down by 1, Anthony then missed a jumper with 18 seconds left and the Knicks allowed Wall to do this:

Wall would go on to steal the final possession from the Knicks, and the Wizards left MSG with a win.

Gregg Popovich gets ejected, standing O after screaming “You’re a terrible referee” (VIDEO)

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Gregg Popovich can be a fiesty dude, and sometimes he just wants to get his team pumped up. After news that Pau Gasol was going to be absent from the San Antonio Spurs’ lineup against the Denver Nuggets on Thursday, perhaps this was his way of doing that?

Late in the second quarter in Denver, Popovich was seen arguing with a baseline official as play continued on. Pop was hit with an initial tech, and as the officiating crew walked away he blasted ’em with the best dad insult I’ve heard in a long time.

“You’re a terrible referee!”

GOT ‘EM:

Meanwhile, Emmanuel Mudiay was more than happy to assist with the second technical and ejection portion of Popovich’s tirade.

Long Live Pop.

Watch Kristaps Porzingis come out of nowhere on this putback dunk (VIDEO)

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Kristaps Porzingis is “The Unicorn” perhaps in part because of his high basketball awareness on the offensive end of the floor. On Thursday night against the Washington Wizards, the New York Knicks big man had an incredible putback dunk that surprised even his teammates.

Thanks to a missed Courtney Lee 3-pointer, Porzingis was able to fly in from beyond the arc to slam home two points.

Via Twitter:

Yeah, that’s crazy.

There’s putback dunks and then there’s flying in from beyond the 3-point line like this one. Wild.

Spurs big man Pau Gasol fractures finger during warmups, out indefinitely

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The San Antonio Spurs will have to make do without PF/C for a while Pau Gasol thanks to a recent fracture in his left ring finger.

That’s according to a press release from the team, who said Gasol fractured his fourth metacarpal — the bone that connects the ring finger down to the carpal bones in the wrist area — during warmups before a game against the Denver Nuggets on Thursday night.

No word yet from the team on recovery time, but estimates given similar recent NBA player injuries suggest anywhere from 4-8 weeks.

Utah Jazz forward Gordon Hayward missed the first month of the season after fracturing his finger in early October. Cleveland Cavaliers PG Kyrie Irving missed around a month in 2012 with a similar injury.

Here’s hoping Gasol can make it back to the court quickly for the Spurs.