Kurt Helin

Paul Pierce sprained right ankle, but it looked far worse (VIDEO)

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That looked scary.

Just before half, Paul Pierce — the veteran forward the Clippers brought in to give them more shooting and provide quality depth up front (it hasn’t worked out that way, but Doc Rivers is giving him more run as the playoffs near) — was driving the lane against the team he will go into the Hall of Fame as a member of (the Celtics). He hit a tough shot over Jared Sullinger.

Then he came down awkwardly on his right leg. He went to the floor grabbing his knee. Everybody held their breath. Pierce went to the locker room and did not return to the game.

Pierce said after the game it was just a sprained ankle, but because of this he will sit out the next week to get right for the playoffs.

It will be interesting to see how much and when Rivers uses Pierce in the postseason. Pierce’s shooting has taken a nosedive this season to a career-low 48 percent true shooting percentage (30 percent from three), and he can be exposed defensively. The Clippers will get Blake Griffin back Sunday, which will help with their rotations.

Russell Westbrook rebounds, puts back his own missed free throw (VIDEO)

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In case you still had any questions about who is the best athlete in the NBA, we present this.

It is Russell Westbrook missing a free throw, getting his own rebound and putting it back for two. Let’s put aside for a second just how poorly the Rockets did here at boxing out or even caring about the rebound in the least, and marvel at Westbrook. Who is a stud and had another triple-double in this game, his 16th of the season.

Karl-Anthony Towns blows by one Sun, dunks on another (VIDEO)

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Ladies and Gentlemen, that is your Rookie of the Year.

Towns gets the ball out top, puts it on the floor and drives past Jon Leuer like he’s not even there, then dunks over Mirza Teletovic. That is a grown man move. Give the man the trophy.

One fan steals Kobe’s sweaty shooting sleeve away from another fan, then smells it (VIDEO)

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Well, that’s just weird.

Kobe Bryant was making his final appearance in Utah and getting smoked by the Jazz, and from the bench he throws his purple shooting sleeve into the crowd. A fan grabs it. Some Kobe fans behind him pull it away from him like Hyenas battling for a carcass on the African plain.

Then the guy who steals it smells it. So does his female companion. It’s weird.

It’s a big world with room for a lot of different kinds of people.

Another night, another Russell Westbrook triple-double (VIDEO)

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Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook has 16 triple doubles this season after dropping another one Monday night on the Raptors.

That is the most since Magic Johnson’s 17 in 1989 (both Oscar Robertson and Wilt Chamberlain have more from a bygone era).  Westbrook may well break that record.