Kurt Helin

lance stephenson
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Pelicans’ Lance Stephenson out indefinitely due to groin muscle tear

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The basketball gods have it in for New Orleans right now. Tyreke Evans (leg issues), Jrue Holiday (personal), and
Quincy Pondexter (knee) are all key parts of the rotation who are out.

Now add Lance Stephenson to the mix as he will need surgery, the team announced. From the official press release:

The New Orleans Pelicans announced today that guard Lance Stephenson has been diagnosed with a groin injury that will require surgery. An MRI performed today confirmed the injury. A timetable for his return will be announced at a later date.

Stephenson has played 27 minutes a night so far for the Pelicans, averaging 9.7 points and 4.8 assists per game. He’s become a key part of their rotation because he can create his own shot, including what could have been the game winner against the Suns this week (if Devin Booker hadn’t sent it to OT with a great play).

The Pelicans are 0-6 to start the season and it’s going to be hard to climb out of that hole, especially if they can’t get healthy.

Watch LeBron James pass Hakeem Olajuwon for 10th on all-time scoring list

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LeBron James was the youngest player ever to reach 25,000 points last season, and he has been rocketing up the all-time scoring list in the past couple of years.

Saturday night he made a big step — he moved into the top 10 by passing Hakeem Olajuwon (26,946 points). If you want to include points scored in the ABA back in the day LeBron would be 12th, but the NBA doesn’t count those stats.

LeBron did it with a transition layup midway through the first quarter.

The all-time leading scorer remains Kareem Abdul-Jabbar with 38,387. Maybe LeBron could make a run at that if he wants to play until he’s 40, but does he?

Paul George ejected for kicking ball that hits fan

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There was not a lot of malice here, he did not go Lionel Messi on the ball. Doesn’t matter. Paul George rightfully was ejected and is going to pay a hefty fine for this.

It started in the third quarter when Jimmy Butler drove the basket and George was called for a foul. PG13 was a little frustrated, and as the ball rolled along the baseline he kicked it — and it flew into the stands and hit a fan. George instantly walks over and apologizes, nobody seems terribly put out by all of it.

But kicking a ball into the stands is an automatic ejection. There is no gray area here.

Because of the lack of malice I don’t expect a suspension for this, but the NBA’s fine/suspension system is pretty much roulette so who knows what number comes up.

The Pacers hung on to win the game 111-94.

Watch Bulls’ tribute video to Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah (with Chance the Rapper)

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Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah — two legendary Bulls players — were welcomed back to Chicago Friday night.

Well, Noah was welcomed back with open arms, Rose heard a few boos.

The Bulls organization knocked it out of the park — like a Cubs hitter — with their tribute video featuring Chance the Rapper.

Noah, Rose, and the Knicks got the win.

Lakers now break huddle with Metta World Peace’s “I love basketball”

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Metta World Peace loves basketball.

So much so that he said it earlier this season after a made free throw, and as these things happen it became a thing in the NBA Twitterverse. Here is the original.

https://platform.vine.co/static/scripts/embed.js

The Lakers have adopted this as a mantra.

If you’ve watched the Lakers this season that the most noticeable difference under Luke Walton:

Joy.

Love of the game.

It was evident as the Lakers knocked off Golden State — as much as it was Stephen Curry missing threes, it was the Lakers playing with pace and energy. The ball is moving, the players are moving. There is passion there again after they have been released from the Byron Scott shackles, and the Lakers are watchable again (not to dismiss out of hand the Kobe Bryant farewell tour, but that was hard to watch basketball for long stretches).

If World Peace can help instill this in a young team, he’s worth the contract.