<span class="vcard">Kurt Helin</span>

Brandan Wright, Kris Humphries

Dallas’ Brandan Wright finishes alley-oop all over Kevin Seraphin (VIDEO)

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That was embarrassing. And on top of all of it Kevin Seraphin got called for the foul.

Dallas rode their juggernaut offense and 34 points from Monta Ellis to pick up a quality win. Dirk Nowitzki was knocking down key shots.

But if you want a highlight that has people talking, this is it.

Markieff Morris: We knew Caldwell-Pope would miss last shot because he “doesn’t have any heart”

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Markieff Morris
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In the second quarter of the Suns eventual win over the Pistons in Detroit Wednesday night, Markieff Morris and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope got into it a little bit, jawing at each other. It happens.

Late in the game the Suns’ Eric Bledsoe made a driving layup that put the Suns on top. Still, the Pistons had a couple of chances to tie. First Morris blocked a Brandon Jennings driving layup, but the Pistons got another chance when Caldwell-Pope let go a three with :02 on the clock. If it goes in the Pistons win.

Morris wasn’t worried (via Vincent Goodwill of the Detroit News):

Well then.

As Goodwill notes, it’s easy to say that after the fact. This is a league of faux fights and “tough guys” who make sure someone is there to hold them back so they don’t actually get in a fight. So take it all with a little bit of salt.

Circle the date on your calendar, the rematch is Dec. 12 in Phoenix.

PBT’s Wednesday night NBA Winners/Losers: Video of LeBron’s fumble, other tight finishes

LeBron James
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Every night the NBA can be a cold hard reality — there are winners, there are losers. It’s the nature of the game. We know you are busy and can’t keep up with every game, so we’re here to bring you the best and worst of the NBA each week night. Here’s what you missed while… if you missed Wednesday night in the NBA you missed a lot.

source:  LeBron James/Cleveland Cavaliers. LeBron tried to say this wasn’t a measuring stick game for the Cavaliers… we all knew it was. No game in November means anything if they meet in June, but it tells you where the teams are now. What we learned is that the Spurs still know how to execute when everything is on the line and the Cavaliers, well, it’s still a work in progress.

source:  Kyle Lowry/Toronto Raptors. We The North handed Memphis just its second loss of the season, and they did it taking over late in the fourth quarter — Memphis was 4-of-14 shooting in the final quarter while Toronto had a lot of Terrence Ross late. Then, with the game tied late, it was Kyle Lowry with the final for points for the Raptors, including a wicked step back jumper for the dagger (Mike Conley defended as well as you can, but good offense beats good defense).

source:  Eric Bledsoe, Phoenix Suns. At the end of a tight game in Detroit, the Suns Eric Bledsoe was the guy who was making plays, showing why he got paid this summer.

The Pistons had a couple of chances late to tie or take the lead, but Markieff Morris blocked a Brandon Jennings layup, then with two seconds left Kentavious Caldwell-Pope got a look at a three to get the win and… Morris wasn’t worried.

source:  Brandon Knight, Milwaukee Bucks. It was almost a night he was a loser here after this:

But in the second OT the Bucks were down three late and it was Knight who knocked down the three to send it to the third overtime. Then the Bucks won it in the third frame, 122-118. So Knight gets to be a winner for the night.

source:  Wesley Johnson/Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers played smart late — with Dwight Howard out they doubled James Harden with Jordan Hill in fourth quarter, Hill was free to push out because there was no threat of scoring behind him. Still, the Lakers were down one with less than 50 seconds left in the game and Harden was trying to isolate on Wesley Johnson when…

The Lakers have two nice wins in a row, both since Nick Young came back. Coincidence?

source:  Solomon Hill/Indiana Pacers. Rodney Stuckey took the shot to win it all and… wow that was bad. An airball. But then there was Solomon Hill.

Latest batch of Spurs/H-E-B commercials are classic

Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker
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The Spurs are so one as a team they even do their endorsement deals together.

For years some of the Spurs guys who don’t get a lot of national endorsement deals have teamed up for some clever ads for H-E-B, the Texas-based grocery store chain based out of San Antonio.  These three ads are the latest, featuring Tim Duncan and company.

Even Kawhi Leonard speaks in these. The Patty Mills barbecue one is my personal favorite.

NBA suspends Hornets’ Jeff Taylor for 24 games following guilty plea for domestic violence

Jeff Taylor mug
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Charlotte swingman Jeff Taylor has been away from the team since before training camp opened, sidelined by the organization following an arrest on domestic violence charges that took place in East Lansing, Michigan. Taylor has already pled guilty those charges, which were misdemeanors.

Considering that and the league’s own investigation, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver handed down a 24-game suspension to Taylor on Wednesday. Taylor has already missed 11 games on paid leave, he will miss 13 more games but suffer the financial hit of missing 24 games, the league announced. (That works out to about $268,000.)

This is a much stiffer penalty for domestic violence than the league has handed out in the past, amounting to almost 30 percent of the season.

“This suspension is necessary to protect the interests of the NBA and the public’s confidence in it,” Silver said in a released statement explaining his decision. “Mr. Taylor’s conduct violates applicable law and, in my opinion, does not conform to standards of morality and is prejudicial and detrimental to the NBA. While the suspension is significantly longer than prior suspensions for incidents of domestic violence by NBA players, it is appropriate in light of Mr. Taylor’s conduct, the need to deter similar conduct going forward, and the evolving social consensus — with which we fully concur — that professional sports leagues like the NBA must respond to such incidents in a more rigorous way.

“Because education and training is just as important as the imposition of discipline, Mr. Taylor must also satisfactorily complete the terms of his sentence, including the domestic violence intervention program, alcohol counseling, and community service (which we recommend be directed toward efforts to help victims of domestic violence). ln addition, he will be required to attend individual counseling sessions with a counselor jointly selected by the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association.

The league also gave its description of what happened that night in East Lansing, based on its investigation.

Based on the NBA’s investigation, the following summary of facts is undisputed After a night of heavy drinking on September 24,2014, Mr. Taylor and the woman had an intense and high-volume argument that began in the hotel room where Mr. Taylor was staying, prompting hotel guests to call Marriott security. The argument escalated and resulted in Mr. Taylor shoving the woman in a violent manner into the hotel hallway so that she fell to the ground and struck her head on the opposite door, slapping her arm, and punching a hole in a wall near his hotel room. She had marks on her upper arm and a bump on her head but declined medical treatment.

In the wake of the NFL’s fumble of the Ray Rice domestic abuse situation, the NBA had to come down harder on Taylor than it had in the past (you know other leagues will follow suit). The NBA wants to make a statement to its fans and also to its players — domestic violence will not be glossed over by the league. At least anymore. More than that, this was just the right thing to do. The NBA has been too soft on domestic violence, drunk driving arrests and other crimes by players.

While there will be tougher tests to come for the league — ones where the player does not plead guilty — Silver again passed this test.