Kurt Helin

Oklahoma City fans let Kevin Durant know exactly how they felt during introductions (VIDEO)

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The energy inside Chesapeake Arena in Oklahoma City Saturday night was exactly what we expected:

A lot of Kevin Durant hate.

Thunder fans let Durant know how they felt, as you can hear in the video above.

Durant struggled in the first quarter but finished the half with 15 points on 12 shots. The difference is he can be average and the Warriors will still put up points thanks to Stephen Curry (17 in the first half) and a stronger surrounding core. Heck, JaVale McGee had a dozen in the first half and looked good.

Russell Westbrook had 21 in the first half, on 19 shots, but had 7 turnovers and not nearly enough help. Which is why the Warriors were up 73-50 at the half.

Former Celtic, Syracuse star Fab Melo dies at age 26

2012 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot
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This is devastating news.

Fab Melo, the former Syracuse star out of Brazil who was drafted No. 22 by the Celtics in 2012, has died at the age of 26. He died at his home in Brazil, the country he had returned to and played professionally. Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim confirmed the news to ESPN.

“He was a really good kid, and it’s not fair that he will be defined by one thing: a 10-page paper,” Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim told ESPN shortly after hearing Melo had died at his mother’s house. “He worked his tail off to become a really good player and was a nice kid.”

“We don’t know the cause yet,” a shaken Boeheim added. “It’s so hard right now, so hard to believe. It’s a sad, sad day.”

The 10-page paper Boeheim refers to is an academic scandal that landed Syracuse in trouble.

Melo was a project on the NBA level. He played just six games for the Celtics — he spent a chunk of time in the D-League for them — and was traded to Memphis and waived. Dallas gave him a training camp invite but he didn’t make the regular season roster.

Our thoughts are with his family and friends. Whatever the cause, 26 is entirely too young to see someone pass.

Joel Embiid has torn meniscus in left knee, no surgery thought needed

BOSTON, MA - JANUARY 6: Joel Embiid #21 of the Philadelphia 76ers looks on during the second half against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden on January 6, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Celtics defeat the 76ers 110-106. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that , by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
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Joel Embiid has missed 10 of the last 11 Sixers games with what the team has described as a knee contusion.

However, Derek Bodner, who writes for the USA Today and DraftExpress, broke the news on his own website that the Sixers have found a torn meniscus in his left knee, although not one bad enough to require surgery.

Joel Embiid has a torn meniscus in his left knee, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the situation.

The tear was discovered after Embiid underwent an MRI following a 93-92 victory on January 20th over the Portland Trailblazers. Embiid left the game in the third quarter with a left knee contusion after landing awkwardly following a drive to the basket….

The tear is a low-grade tear and is not expected to require surgical intervention. It is unclear whether the tear is contributing to the soreness and swelling which has kept Embiid out of 11 of the last 12 games, including the last 8 in a row.

Sixers GM Bryan Colangelo confirmed this to CSNPhilly.com.

“On the MRI that was conducted shortly after the injury vs. Portland, the MRI revealed obviously what we thought it to be — a bone bruise,” Colangelo said before the Sixers’ game against Miami on Saturday.

“There was also the recognition that there was a very minor meniscal tear. But it was not thought to be acute and it was not thought to be the source of the pain, inflammation or symptoms. That is the case.”

Embiid himself called this a bone bruise and told CSNPhilly.com he is not ready to return.

“I’m not healthy,” Embiid said. “Got to take care of my knee, this bone bruise. It’s been on and off. Work out and then swells up a little but and then got to slow it down. Like I said, it’s all about patience. But no, I’m not healthy … I’m not able to play right now.”

If this is a mild tear as reported, it’s not a long-term issue and unrelated to the foot issues that sidelined him for the first two seasons. Meaning, this is the kind of thing that could happen to anyone.

It is a blow to the Sixers, who are 1-6 in their last seven games without him. Also, it seems unlikely he participates in any of the All-Star weekend activities — he was scheduled to be part of the Friday night rising stars game and the Saturday skills competition.

Blake Griffin threw it down all over Miles Plumlee (VIDEO)

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Miles Plumlee got out of Milwaukee for this?

The Hornets and Clippers had an early Saturday showdown in Charlotte, and early in the first half Blake Griffin did very bad things to Plumlee. The Clippers were trying to attack Marvin Williams, who had two fouls. It worked, Plumlee tried to rotate over, and he joins the lengthy list of players Griffin has posterized.

Kings, Hawks official Twitter accounts take NBA’s “play nice” memo very seriously

Sacramento Kings forward DeMarcus Cousins, left, hugs teammate Darren Collison, right, after he made the game winning basket in the final moments of the Kings 108-107 win over the Atlanta Hawks, in an NBA basketball game Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in Sacramento, Calif. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
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The Sacramento Kings and Atlanta Hawks played a thriller Friday night, a game with multiple lead changes in the final minute, which the Kings won on a Darren Collison driving layup with three seconds left.

But before and after that, the official Kings and Hawks Twitter accounts had a love-fest, in following with — and mocking — the NBA’s memo that teams need to not insult each other on social media.

It was brilliant.