Steve Nash suffers bruised shin, to be re-evaluated Thursday

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Wednesday night, in the second quarter of the Lakers second ugly loss to start the season, Steve Nash and Blazers rookie Damian Lillard collided and Nash was clearly hurt, heading to the locker room.

He came back out for the second half, but it quickly became clear that he was not right and he played just 1:16 before heading back to the locker room.

The Lakers are calling it a shin contusion and saying they don’t know if this will keep him out of Friday’s game against the Clippers. Nash will be re-evaluated on Thursday.

Nash said he wants to play but even he has no idea, as reported by Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com.

“I guess I wouldn’t want to say right now (whether he will play) but I’m definitely hopeful,” Nash told reporters after the game….

“It was sore but I went out to try and play and then I planted on it and it just kind of gave out on me,” Nash said. “It was sore and functionally I couldn’t plant on it, or push off on it, or accelerate.”

Nash had only 2 points and 4 assists in his limited play. While it didn’t seem like it to Lakers fans, the offense actually was better Wednesday night, putting up 106 points and scoring 113.1 points per 100 possessions. That will get you wins most nights… if you play any defense. But that has done the Lakers in two games in a row now — the Lakers gave up 108.7 points per 100 possessions to Dallas and then 113.1 to Portland. Keep playing like that over the course of the season and it would be one of the very worst defenses in the NBA (Charlotte was worst in the league at 110.4 last season).

Draymond Green addresses argument with Kevin Durant: ‘I’m not going to change who I am’

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Warriors forward Draymond Green knows the perceived significance of his argument with teammate Kevin Durant.

“I’ve read a lot about how, is this the end of the run? Or is it over? Or did I ruin it? Or did I force Kevin to leave?” Green said.

But don’t expect Green to bend amid those high stakes.

“I’m not going to change who I am,” Green said.

Anthony Slater of The Athletic:

Green is correct: His emotional, stubborn, feisty style has led to more good than bad both for himself and Golden State. Reigning that in could have adverse effects.

But there’s still room for personal growth. Green can handle some situations, including this one, better without losing his edge. Every level of the organization agreed.

Blake Griffin calls out Raptors president Masai Ujiri while praising Dwane Casey

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Dwane Casey reportedly holds a grudge toward Raptors president Masai Ujiri for firing him.

Casey got revenge last night, coaching the Pistons to a win at Toronto. Casey called two quality plays in the final seconds, the latter producing Reggie Bullock‘s game-winner.

Keith Langlois of Pistons.com:

A Toronto reporter asked Blake Griffin if it gives Pistons players a degree of confidence in their coach when he gives them those tools to win games.

“We know that. This isn’t like we just discovered this for the first time today,” he said. “We’ve put in plays like that all the time in practice. He demands execution and we executed. Maybe to Toronto fans – or certainly their GM, maybe – it was a surprise. But not to us.”

The win had to be gratifying for Casey. Having his star player take up his greater cause must even more satisfying.

Jazz have one of worst offensive showings ever, score 68 in 50-point loss to Mavericks

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NBA scoring is exploding. Defenses are getting less leeway for physicality. Offenses are more efficient than ever. Pace is at its highest mark in decades.

Except for the Jazz last night.

Utah scored just 68 points in a 50-point loss to the Mavericks. And even that undersells the Jazz’s offensive woes. They played reasonably fast, getting 101 possessions. Their offensive rating – 67.3 – shows just how inept they truly were.

In all, Utah shot 42% on 2-pointers, 17% on 3-pointers and 63% on free throws and committed 22 turnovers.

The Jazz set several milestones for offensive futility:

  • Fewest points in a game (68) in nearly two years (68 by Hawks vs. Jazz on Nov. 25, 2016)
  • Lowest Basketball-Reference estimated offensive rating in a game (68.8) in more than three years (68.2 by Grizzlies vs. Warriors on Nov. 2, 2015)
  • Fewest points in a second half (22) in nearly five years (19 by Rockets vs. Thunder on Jan. 16, 2014)

Comparing across eras can be difficult, but here’s one measure: The Jazz scored 68 points in a season teams are averaging 110.4 points per game.

That output relative to average – -42.4 – is one of the lowest of all-time:

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Kevin Durant’s brother posts: ‘just follow along before the greatness is done rubbing off on you and people see you for what you really are’

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Kevin Durant and Draymond Green are feuding, the possibility of Durant leaving the Warriors in free agency next summer hanging over everything.

Now comes Durant’s brother, Tony – intentionally or not – throwing gasoline on the fire. Again.

Tony posted and deleted these comments on Instagram, via Bleacher Report:

Read too much into vague social-media content at your own peril.

But, man, that sure looks like Tony advising Green just to enjoy Durant masking Green’s problems until Durant leaves the Warriors and leaves Green exposed.