The Knicks and Magic played maybe the ugliest game of the season — the two teams combined for 15 points in the second quarter. Total. It was brutal.
But it was an exciting ending.
Tim Hardaway Jr. knocked down a deep three, a play set up by an offensive rebound. Hardaway, who had been back to defend a fast break, pulled the ball back to reset the play, and then saw the fading shot clock and jacked up a deep three.
With this, the Knicks and Timberwolves are tied for the worst record in the NBA and the best lottery odds.
Grizzlies’ Marc Gasol leaves game with sprained ankle not to return
Memphis was already without key players — Mike Conley was out with a foot injury, and Tony Allen remains sidelined.
Now this: Center Marc Gasol left the game with a sprained ankle and did not return to action against the Clippers Saturday.
There is no word yet on if he could miss more time.
This was a big blow to the Grizzlies, who came into the night the two seed in the West. If Memphis loses the game, then the Grizzlies, Clippers, and Spurs would all be tied at 54-26 with Houston just half a game behind. The Western Conference remains incredibly bunched in the middle of the pack.
Without Gasol, especially for a couple games, Memphis could slip down as far as the six seed, losing home-court in the first round. The Grizzlies have just two more games, against Golden State and Indiana (a team fighting for its own playoff chances in the East).
Minnesota had already shut down Ricky Rubio for the season. Rubio injured his ankle back on Nov. 7 and, while he made a brief comeback, it has not been right, and he had not played much like the Rubio everyone expected. So a few weeks back coach/GM Flip Saunders made the obvious official and ended his season.
“We have closely monitored the status of Ricky’s ankle injury during the rehabilitation process. Ricky recently experienced ongoing soreness in his left ankle and it became apparent that it was not responding according to its anticipated timeline for recovery. As part of this process we sought numerous opinions as to the best course of action. Ricky was most recently seen by Dr. Richard Ferkel of the Southern California Orthopedic Institute in Los Angeles and it was concluded that the best option would be to pursue diagnostic arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle.
At the time of his initial injury we stated the importance of Ricky’s long-term health. He is an integral part of our future and we are taking every precaution to ensure that he will be able to perform to the best of his ability next season.”
The surgery is just a “minor cleanup” reports Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports. As Rubio is just finishing the first year of a new four-year contract extension, thinking about the long term and getting him right for next season isn’t just the smart play, it’s the only play. Rubio played in just 22 games this season, averaging 10.3 points and 8.8 assists per game. He remains a fantastic playmaker and shooter with a wonky shot.
Rubio recently suggested he is going to take the summer off from the Spanish national team. After this surgery, one would hope so.