Author: Brett Pollakoff

Houston Rockets v Sacramento Kings

Rockets’ Patrick Beverley expected to remain out for Western Conference Finals matchup with Warriors

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When the Rockets ruled Patrick Beverley out for the season after he suffered a torn ligament in his wrist that would require surgery, they probably weren’t counting on making a run this deep into the postseason.

Now that Houston has made it to the Western Conference Finals, however, observers began to wonder if Beverley might be healed in time to return to the lineup to bolster his team’s defense against a very good Warriors squad.

It’s not looking as though that’s a real possibility.

From Marc Stein and Calvin Watkins of

The Houston Rockets are operating under the premise that perimeter defensive ace Patrick Beverley, out since March with a torn ligament in his left wrist, is unlikely to play in the forthcoming Western Conference finals, according to league sources.

Beverley is scheduled to have his cast removed in coming days and says he’s hopeful of being cleared to play, but sources told ES‎ that the Rockets are pessimistic about Beverley healing sufficiently quickly to return in this round against the 67-win Golden State Warriors. …

“Patrick is not going to get his pin out until June 4 or 5,” Rockets coach Kevin McHale said Monday. “I think it’s hard to play with a pin in your (wrist).”

Beverley is one of the league’s better perimeter defenders, and his skill set would certainly come in handy against a Golden State team that makes its living by taking a high volume of attempts from three-point distance.

The decision to have surgery was delayed while Beverley and the Rockets weighed their options. It was a serious step, and deserved to be carefully considered. But had it been done sooner, Beverley may have been available to pester Stephen Curry beginning with Game 1 of the series.

Previewing the 2015 NBA Draft Lottery: Odds and pick scenarios

2012 NBA Draft Lottery

The NBA will hold its Draft Lottery in Manhattan on Tuesday, and while there are reasons why all 14 teams participating can feel good about their chances, here are the actual odds that will factor into how things shake out.

TEAM RECORD CHANCES 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th 11th 12th 13th 14th
Minnesota Timberwolves 16-66 250 .250 .215 .178 .357
New York Knicks 17-65 199 .199 .188 .171 .319 .123
Philadelphia 76ers 18-64 156 .156 .157 .156 .226 .265 .040
Los Angeles Lakers 21-61 119 .119 .126 .133 .099 .351 .160 .012
Orlando Magic 25-57 88 .088 .097 .107 .261 .360 .084 .004
Sacramento Kings 29-53 63 .063 .071 .081 .440 .305 .040 .001
Denver Nuggets 30-52 43 .043 .049 .058 .600 .232 .018 .000
Detroit Pistons 32-50 28 .028 .033 .039 .724 .168 .008 .000
Charlotte Hornets 33-49 17 .017 .020 .024 .813 .122 .004 .000
Miami Heat 37-45 11 .011 .013 .016 .870 .089 .002 .000
Indiana Pacers 38-44 8 .008 .009 .012 .907 .063 .001 .000
Utah Jazz 38-44 7 .007 .008 .010 .935 .039 .000
Phoenix Suns 39-43 6 .006 .007 .009 .960 .018
Oklahoma City Thunder 45-37 5 .005 .006 .007 .982


There are two scenarios where teams could lose their picks, depending on where they fall, thanks to prior trade agreements.

The Sixers will get the Lakers pick if it should fall to sixth or seventh, and Philadelphia could also end up with Miami’s pick (via dealing Thaddeus Young to Minnesota) if it falls outside the top 10.

As for the lottery itself, it goes down like this (via

– Fourteen ping-pong balls numbered 1 through 14 will be placed in a lottery machine. There are 1,001 possible combinations when four balls are drawn out of 14, without regard to their order of selection. Prior to the lottery, 1,000 of those 1,001 combinations will be assigned to the 14 participating lottery teams.

– All 14 balls are placed in the lottery machine and they are mixed for 20 seconds; then the first ball is removed. The remaining balls are mixed in the lottery machine for another 10 seconds, and then second ball is drawn. There is a 10-second mix, and then the third ball is drawn. There is a 10-second mix, and then the fourth ball is drawn. The team that has been assigned that combination will receive the number one pick. The same process is repeated with the same ping-pong balls and lottery machine for the second pick and then again for the third pick.

– The order of selection for the teams that do not win one of the top three picks will be determined by inverse order of their regular-season record. Thus, Minnesota can pick no lower than fourth, New York (17-65) no lower than fifth and Philadelphia (18-64) no lower than sixth.

– The actual drawing happens privately before the nationally televised broadcast, but not because there’s anything nefarious taking place. It’s completed in a room full of league and team executives, as well as a few members of the media. And as you can see below, it’s incredibly boring to watch.

The Draft Lottery will be broadcast from the Grand Ballroom of the New York Hilton Midtown hotel, and can be seen tonight on ESPN beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET.

Cavaliers’ Iman Shumpert not happy with reporter who printed his semi-threatening remarks

Oklahoma City Thunder v Cleveland Cavaliers

During the second quarter of the Cavaliers’ series-clinching Game 6 win over the Bulls, Nikola Mirotic committed a flagrant foul against Iman Shumpert, clotheslining him as he attempted to drive to the basket.

The play seemed to motivate Shumpert, who scored his team’s next five points and finished the second quarter with 11 points and six rebounds to help his team begin to put Chicago away.

Afterward, Shumpert had what he thought was a private conversation with LeBron James about it. But reporters were in the locker room, and the comments which were overheard ended up being printed for all to see.

Chris Haynes of

Shumpert was still miffed by that wrestling tactic after the game. As he was getting dressed, he was telling James “That dude better be cool. I’m from here. I got my family here and everything. He wants to get out safe, don’t he?”

It prompted a laugh from his teammates and James responded, “He must not know you’re from The Chi.”

The fact that his teammates laughed made it fairly clear that this was a light-hearted remark from Shumpert, and during the game, there was no retaliation from anyone on the Cleveland side for Mirotic’s hit.

But Shumpert wasn’t at all pleased that his remarks were made public; they could have been perceived to be legitimately threatening by some,  and technically, they were made to a teammate and not to reporters, despite the media being present in the locker room space.

Having been in NBA locker rooms myself for several years, I can say definitively that you see and hear all kinds of things that aren’t meant to be distributed for public consumption.

But at the same time, when reporting to the masses, if something strikes you as harmless that would add color to the game story, or provide fans with some additional perspective, then you go with it — because after all, that’s part of why you have that access in the first place.

In this situation, the reporter obviously felt there was no harm in sharing Shumpert’s discussion. I tend to agree, but obviously, the player who was quoted didn’t see it the same way.