Author: Kurt Helin

Charlotte Hornets v Indiana Pacers

Bismack Biyombo bounces Ian Mahinmi out of way, throws down on him (VIDEO)

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Usually, it’s Bismack Biyombo trying to reject guys at the rim. But Friday night it was Biyombo attacking the rim and Ian Mahinmi of the Pacers trying to get in his way.

Score this round for Biyombo. He just bounces Mahinmi out of the way and dunks all over him.

Mahinmi and the Pacers had the last laugh, getting a much-needed win 93-74.

Jamal Crawford returns to Clippers practice, reportedly could play Tuesday

Jamal Crawford
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The Clippers have won 10 of their last 13 games, yet they haven’t gotten the respect from all quarters they believe they deserve as contenders. Part of it is that their defense hasn’t been very consistent — they picked up a dramatic win over Portland this week because Chris Paul dropped 41 and they just outscored the Blazers, not because they could get stops.

The other issue is depth. As in they don’t have any.

But they could pick up a little help soon, as Jamal Crawford — last season’s Sixth Man of the Year — has returned to practice following his calf injury. From Arash Markazi of ESPN.

Also, Doc Rivers may return to a well he is plenty familiar with.

Robinson isn’t a playoff answer, but he’s better than their other options (Austin Rivers, for one).

The real challenge for the Clippers lack of depth in the playoffs isn’t minutes as much — you can play Chris Paul and Blake Griffin more — but the lack of versatility. All the weapons that Golden State or San Antonio have is it means they can attack you in a variety of ways, the Clippers are more predictable. That can be trouble in a seven-game series.

In the West, the little things will matter, and getting Crawford back is more than a little thing for the Clippers.

John Wall joins Michelle Obama’s Gimme Five Challenge

Miami Heat v Washington Wizards
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Michelle Obama has taken on childhood obesity as an issue — and it’s a crucial one, as any parent (and in my case wife of a teacher, too) can tell you. Here latest part of that is the #GimmeFive campaign — she’s challenging people to name five ways they are leading a healthy life.

John Wall is leading a healthy lifestyle — he talked to PBT about having a personal chef and watching what he eats now as part of an improved conditioning program — and he jumped in the campaign. He and fellow Wizard Garrett Temple did a little dancing.

No, not the Dougie.

Good for him, the more people on board with the campaign, the better.

Best promo night ever: Kings to host Sauce Castillo night

saucynight_website
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source:

It all started when the closed captioning program translating a Sacramento Kings game didn’t know what to do with Nik Stauskas, so when he hit a three it called him “Sauce Castillo.”

Andrew Unterberger put it out there on Twitter and just took off. It went viral, as the kids would say. Suddenly it was everywhere — and Stauskas embraced it. Not that he had a choice, nobody but Kobe Bryant gets to nickname themselves.

Now the Kings’ organization is taking it to the next level — Sauce Castillo Night.

Every fan in attendance apparently gets a specially labeled bottle of hot sauce — “Born In Canada, Captioned in Sacramento.”

I can’t wait to see what the closed captioning does with Sim Bhullar.

Report: Nuggets wanted two first round picks for Ty Lawson at trade deadline

Denver Nuggets v Portland Trail Blazers
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At the time of the trade deadline rumors are flying everywhere. Separating teams that are genuinely looking to make a move from teams just looking for a steal can be hard to determine.

Case in point, the Denver Nuggets. They wanted to make some moves at the trade deadline — Timofey Mozgov was sent to Cleveland — but there were rumors they also were shopping Ty Lawson around. They were, but Zach Lowe at Grantland notes they were in the “looking for a steal not a deal” mode with him.

The Nuggets discussed Lawson deals at the deadline, and sources at the time said Denver wanted multiple first-round picks.

They were never going to get that. Lawson’s good but the market is too deep with quality point guards to sacrifice that much to land him.

Lowe discusses this in the context of would Lawson fit with the Jazz as they look to make a leap. He’d be an upgrade at the point for them, but I think there are better fits out there (Avery Bradley or someone similar is a better fit in my mind).

What will be interesting with the Nuggets is to see what direction they try to go this summer. They built an uptempo running team for George Karl that won 57 games, then decided they needed a defensive coach and direction — but they never changed the players around to fit that new style. Shaw’s desire to do it his way and the Nuggets not giving him the pieces for that system cost him his job. This summer the front office needs to first just pick a direction for the Nuggets, and then get a coach and make player moves from there.

Lawson may or may not be a part of that.