Kurt Helin

Damian Lillard, Marc Gasol

PBT Extra matchups to watch: Can Memphis keep Damian Lillard in check?

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In Game 1 of the Portland vs. Memphis series, not only did Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley play, but he also moved incredibly well. Especially for a guy battling a foot injury through the end of the season. Then there was Tony Allen, who was back and looking sharp for Memphis.

All that spelled trouble for Damian Lillard, and Portland as a whole.

Lillard shot 5-of-21, harassed at times, and with that forcing the issue and missing his shots. Portland has LaMarcus Aldridge, but he has his own challenges with the Grizzlies front line of Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph. Aldridge played Memphis to a standstill up front, but Memphis won the backcourt game.

Lillard is key in Game 2. Can he keep getting into the paint (he did that fairly well) and this time finish when he does? If so, Portland can make Game 2 interesting, if not they will go home for Game 3 in a deep hole.

Report: Suns’ Morris twins charged with aggravated assault

Phoenix Suns Media Day
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After a review by a Grand Jury, felony aggravated assault charges have been filed against Phoenix Suns players and twins Markieff Morris and Marcus Morris.

The pair had been under investigation for a Jan. 24 incident where the twins and three others allegedly beat up Erik Hood at a recreational basketball tournament in the Phoenix area. The motivation allegedly had been Hood sending “inappropriate” text messages to the Morris brothers’ mother.

Prosecutors have decided to go ahead with the case, they confirmed to Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.

After the (rec league) game, police say Hood was confronted by (Julius) Kane and struck from behind on the head by (Christopher) Melendez. Hood tried to run to his car but had been dazed by the initial blow to the head and fell to the ground, where he was then repeatedly punched and kicked by all five suspects. The assault was witnessed by a 27-year-old woman, who had attended the game with Hood.

Hood was taken to the emergency room at Phoenix Baptist Hospital where he was treated for a broken nose, bruises and abrasions.

The Morris brothers reportedly denied taking part in the attack and even knowing Hood.

Neither the Morris twins nor the Suns organization released a new statement since the charges were filed.

Suns GM Lon Babby released a statement a while back on the incident:

“The Phoenix Suns are aware of an investigation by the Phoenix Police Department of an alleged assault. We have no information beyond what has been alleged in the police report and therefore have no further comment on the matter at this time. Our organization will closely monitor developments as the legal process unfolds.”

Hawks’ Al Horford says he will play in Game 2 despite finger injury

Al Horford
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Atlanta’s Al Horford suffered a dislocated his little finger on his shooting hand during Game 1 of the Hawks playoff series with the Brooklyn Nets. Then he came out on Monday and said he wasn’t sure of his status for Game 2 Wednesday.

By Tuesday, he was sure of his status, speaking to Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

Is this really a surprise? It’s the playoffs.

That said, Horford will have his little and ring fingers taped together, something he admitted bothered his shot a little in Game 1. Horford had 10 points on 12 shots in Game 1. The injury didn’t bother him in close, he was 4-of-5 shooting inside eight feet of the rim, but he was 0-of-5 on deeper midrange shots and threes that he normally can knock down.

The Hawks didn’t look dominating like a traditional No. 1 seed in Game 1, they still seem to be trying to get their flow back. Horford is going to have work to do on the defensive end slowing down Brook Lopez, who was the Nets best player in Game 1.

Brilliant spoof: Zach Randolph’s deep thoughts on cats, shirts, more

Zach Randolph
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Well done, Zach Randolph and the Memphis Grizzlies. Very well done.

Apparently, there are multiple versions of these deep dish thoughts.

If you’re a little confused right now, you were probably too young to watch Saturday Night Live in the 1990s. In general, you didn’t miss much. But there were some moments, and the few years of strange and funny Deep Thoughts by Jack Handy was one of the best (remember, this is the same era everyone loved The Far Side comic).

Okay, if you’re boring and want more serious Z-Bo, here he is on the Dan Patrick Show talking about his old school game.

Klay Thompson’s drops 26 to power Warriors’ victory (VIDEO)

New Orleans Pelicans v Golden State Warriors - Game Two
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Golden State needed to make a couple of big runs to win Game 2 Monday night. One came later in the second quarter to give the Warriors a small lead at halftime. The other came late in the fourth quarter to earn the win.

Klay Thompson was the catalyst for both.

Thompson finished with 26 points on 11-of-17 shooting, and he had 14 points in the fourth quarter to help secure the win and put the Warriors up 2-0 in the series. It wasn’t a pretty win for the Warriors, but you can’t expect them all to be a coronation. Sometimes you have to grind out playoff wins.

Can the Warriors do that as the series shifts to New Orleans is the question.