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Bradley Beal outduels Carmelo Anthony as Wizards roll over Knicks 117-101

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WASHINGTON (AP) Bradley Beal went shot for shot with Carmelo Anthony and then some as the Washington Wizards blew out the New York Knicks 117-101 Tuesday night to move into a tie for first place in the Southeast Division.

Beal scored 28 points, Markieff Morris had 24 and John Wall added 15 points and 10 assists as the Wizards rolled to their fifth victory in a row and won for the 11th time in 13 games. Beal was 12 of 18 from the floor, while Anthony was 10 of 17 for 26 points.

Washington improved to 28-20 and tied the Atlanta Hawks for first place. The Wizards are the second-hottest team in the NBA behind only the Golden State Warriors, who also won 12 games in January.

With New York big man Kristaps Porzingis out with illness, Washington’s Marcin Gortat was unchallenged inside and scored 15 points on 7-of-7 shooting.

After a back-and-forth first half, the Wizards led by five at halftime but took control early in the third quarter with a 16-2 run. The Knicks missed six consecutive shots after Anthony opened the quarter with a jumper and committed two turnovers to fall behind by 19.

PORZINGIS OUT

Porzingis’ absence wasn’t announced until about 20 minutes before tipoff. Coach Jeff Hornacek didn’t mention the possibility of the Latvian being out during his pregame meeting with reporters.

LOWE-DOWN

With the teams meeting for the first time since Sidney Lowe’s on-court distraction Jan. 19, coach Scott Brooks defended his assistant coach’s actions on the Knicks’ final possession. Lowe was fined $5,000 and the Wizards $15,000 for being on the court when New York’s Courtney Lee said he didn’t attempt a shot because he heard Lowe nearby yelling and believed it was a player who might block his shot.

Wall stole the ball, and the Wizards held on to win 113-110.

“He was on the court,” Brooks said. “I respect the NBA’s decision, but anybody who knows me and knows Sidney that he was not doing it to distract their player. He was instructing (Markieff Morris) to stay up on Carmelo and take him off the 3-point line because we were up 3. Once we did that, he backed off before the Knick player got the ball.”

TIP-INS

Knicks: G Derrick Rose missed his second consecutive game with a sprained left ankle. … Lee has shot 6 of 25 in three games against the Wizards, all losses. … G Brandon Jennings scored 21 points but shot 5 of 16.

Wizards: Extended their home win streak to 15, tying the second-longest in franchise history. The Bullets won 22 consecutive games at home in 1974-75. … Wall’s double-double was his 28th of the season and Gortat’s his 27th. … After being held without a point in the first half, F Otto Porter scored 10 in the third quarter and spent the fourth riding a stationary bike to keep his sore hip loose.

UP NEXT

Knicks: Visit the Brooklyn Nets in the second half of their back-to-back series Wednesday.

Wizards: Host the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday.

Draymond Green says Warriors are “more relaxed” this season

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Last year, the Warriors entered the NBA Finals with the weight of expectations: Defending NBA champions, 73 regular season wins, if they got the title they would leap up the ladder of all-time great teams, lose and it would be a massive let down. We all know what happened from there.

The Warriors are back in the Finals, taking on the Cavaliers for the third year in a row — but this year things are going to be different. Mostly because of Kevin Durant changing the equation. But also the Warriors mindset is better if you ask Draymond Green. Which Mark Spears of ESPN did.

This makes sense. The Warriors to a man denied the pressure and how physically/mentally taxed they were by the chase for 73, but it clearly wore on them physically and mentally. Green was thrashing about and drawing techs, over-reacting to everything (although sometimes that feels like his default setting). Curry was injured but also tired. The Warriors opened the door, LeBron James and the Cavaliers stormed through it.

Will a rested Warriors make a difference this time around? Maybe. But again, Durant matters more than rest.

Report: Harlem Globetrotters to resume series with Washington Generals

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The Harlem Globetrotters dropped the Washington Generals as an opponent a couple years ago – a sad development for basketball traditionalists.

But the sport’s most-lopsided rivalry is returning.

Darren Rovell of ESPN:

Sources said the Generals will be put into rotation to play the Globetrotters again as early as this summer and will take on a greater life than before as the lovable losers.

This just feels right. There’s a spirit about the Generals that complements the Globetrotters so well.

Report: Turkish government issues arrest warrant for Enes Kanter

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The current, authoritarian government in Turkey is not big on dissent (they have beaten protestors of the Turkish regime at a march in this country). Or human rights.

So what’s real trouble for them is opposition and dissent from a famous, well-known person.

Which brings us to Oklahoma City big man Enes Kanter. He is a native of Turkey, and he has been outspoken in his opposition to that country’s current president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Last week the Turkish government revoked Kanter’s passport while he was traveling the globe promoting his charity. He barely got out of Indonesia and was able to get to Romania, where he was detained for a stretch before getting to return to the United States via London.

Now, the Turkish government has issued an arrest warrant for Kanter, reports the Agence France-Presse.

Turkey issued an arrest warrant on Friday for Turkish NBA star Enes Kanter, accusing him of being a member of a “terror group”, a pro-government newspaper reported.

A judge issued the arrest warrant after an Istanbul prosecutor opened an investigation into Kanter’s alleged “membership of an armed terrorist organisation”, Sabah daily reported.

He is in no danger of being extradited by the United States because of this. If anything, it strengthens his case for U.S. citizenship based on asylum.

Kanter is a supporter of the Gülen movement in that country, which is led by the exiled cleric Fethullah Gulen, who currently lives in Pennsylvania. That movement has opposed Erdogan (who recently won a disputed election in that country that gives him sweeping, almost dictatorial powers). Erdogan blamed Gulen for masterminding a failed 2016 coup attempt in Turkey, one with members of the military involved (after that attempt members of the Gulen movement have been swept up by the government all over Turkey). This has come at a cost for Kanter, who has been disavowed by his own family because of his political beliefs.

Kanter is not about to back down from his position. Which means it may be a long time before he gets to visit his homeland again.

Report: Duke guard Frank Jackson undergoes foot surgery before NBA draft

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Duke guard Frank Jackson declared for the 2017 NBA draft with an outside shot of going in the first round and a likelihood of getting picked in the second-round.

This won’t help his stock.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports:

Duke’s Frank Jackson, a well-regarded point guard in the 2017 NBA draft class, underwent right foot surgery and is expected to be fully recovered sometime in July.

When Jackson recovers will determine whether he plays in summer league, and that can affect transition to the pros as a rookie.

The bigger questions: Will this hinder his athleticism long-term? Does this put him at greater injury risk?

Jackson, a 6-foot-4 scoring guard, relies on a strong first step to attack the basket and high elevation on his jumper.