Author: Kurt Helin

Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook takes knee to face, it leaves dent (VIDEO)

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With 2.5 seconds left in the game and his Thunder down three to the Trail Blazers, Russell Westbrook drew a foul in the act of shooting and got three free throws. Hit them all and overtime was likely, but he missed the first one. He made the second then intentionally tried to miss the third (it bounced in), and as he took that final shot he charged forward trying to get the rebound.

Westbrook fell to the floor and while trying to get back up was incidentally kneed in the head by teammate Andre Roberson.

After that, there was a visible dent in Westbrook’s head. You can see it in this photo.

source: AP
Russell Westbrook

Westbrook was evaluated by doctors after the game but did not speak to the media.

There are concerns the dent could be the sign if something more serious, reports Royce Young of ESPN.

Former All-Star, popular Knick Anthony Mason dies at age 48

Anthony mason knicks
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Anthony Mason, popular for his intensity — and being the most physical player on Pat Riley’s tough Knicks teams — has died at the age of 48.

His son Anthony Mason Jr. has confirmed the passing, providing this statement (via the New York Post).

“First I want to thank all those who offered prayers and well-wishes for my Father, our family really appreciates it. Overnight New York City and the world lost a legend, a friend, a brother but more than anything our father, Anthony Mason. As you all would expect our father – Big Mase – put up an incredible fight, dealing with a severe heart issues. I’m wishing this was something else I was writing, but Pops we’ve got to let you know we love you and know you’ll  always be with us.”

Mason had suffered multiple heart attacks on Feb. 10 and had undergone several surgeries at the time, including one lasting nine hours, according to long-time Knicks reporter Peter Vecsey. Family members said recently he had been improving. However, he was still in the hospital and unable to speak.

Mason played 13 NBA seasons but is best remembered as a fan-favorite Knick from those mid-90s teams under Pat Riley. He was a self-made player who had gone undrafted but whose game became central to the Knicks identity. His intense defense, toughness, and physicality were a big part of the team during the Patrick Ewing era. He could defend either forward position well and at times was even was asked to defend the five. Mason was named the Sixth Man of the Year in 1995.

“As a competitor, there was none fiercer than Anthony Mason,” Knicks president Phil Jackson said in a statement. “Standing on the opposite end of the playing field, coaching in those great Chicago/New York battles, No. 14 in the Orange and Blue always stood out. On behalf of the entire Knickerbocker community, our condolences go out to his family. Rest in peace, Mase.”

Eventually when Riley left for Miami he recruited Mason to join him, and it was with the Heat Mason made the All-Star Game in 2001. During his career, Mason also played for the New Jersey Nets, Denver Nuggets, Charlotte Hornets, and Milwaukee Bucks.

Our thoughts go out to his family and friends.

Langston Galloway three forces overtime, Knicks go on to victory (VIDEO)

New York Knicks v Detroit Pistons
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As Jeff Van Gundy and many other coaches like to say, it’s a make or miss league.

The Knicks’ Langston Galloway’s pull-up three was not the kind of shot any coach would recommend — a rushed, contested pull-up three from way behind the arc — but it went in.

That shot forced overtime. There was a second OT. Then Shane Larkin happened; he dropped nine in the second OT and the Knicks beat the Pistons in Detroit. Because that’s the way this season just seems to go.

Russell Westbrook posts third straight triple-double, Thunder lose anyway

Russell Westbrook
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Russell Westbrook is having an offensive season for the ages — one that has thrust him right into the middle of the MVP discussion. Friday night he rattled off his third straight triple-double, putting up a line of 40 points, 13 rebounds and 11 assists. He carried the offensive weight for the Thunder all night.

But it wasn’t enough. Again.

The Thunder blew and 11-point lead to the Trail Blazers in the fourth quarter (although they are far from the first team to do so, Portland executes at the end of games). That is two straight losses. After looking comfortably in the playoffs a couple days ago, Oklahoma City is now just half a game ahead of New Orleans and one game up on Phoenix for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West.

Westbrook is averaging a triple-double over his last five games: 30.6 points, 11.8 assists, and 10.6 rebounds a night. It’s amazing. He should be near the top of an MVP ballot right now. (Hopefully the blow he took to the side of his head — an inadvertent knee from a teammate — does not turn out to be serious.

But the Thunder need Kevin Durant back.

Knicks’ Alexey Shved misses shot about as badly as you can (VIDEO)

Boston Celtics Vs. New York Knicks TD Garden
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To quote Bob Uecker, “juuuuust a bit outside.”

Midway through the fourth quarter Knicks’ point guard Alexey Shved made an ill-advised pass that was deflected, but he then recovered the ball and started to drive the lane, got into the paint, and…

In the words of Clyde the Glide, “threw the ball into oblivion.”

I’d say that sums up the Knicks’ season, but that seems too obvious.