PBT’s Tuesday night NBA Winners/Losers: Dallas, Chicago play game of season

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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 reading about the housewife on heroin….

source:  Kevin Durant. He’s back, and from his first shot he showed the smooth, effortless scoring touch that earned him an MVP last season. The touch that made him one of the NBA’s most beloved players. He showed off all the shots — he attacked the rim at points, showed off his fadeaway at others, there were catch-and-shoot buckets — and while there were moments that it looked like he had missed 17 games following foot surgery most of the time you wouldn’t have known. The bigger concern for the Thunder is they still lost to Pelicans — OKC has a hard road to get back to the playoffs in the brutal and deep West. Still, it’s just fun to have him back.

source:  Dallas Mavericks/Chicago Bulls. Best. Game. This. Season. (At least so far.) The real winner was anyone who watched this one. The Mavericks became the first team to beat Chicago when the Bulls starting five play together, but this game was filled with drama and big plays all night long. There was free basketball with double overtime and big shot after big shot— Derrick Rose hit a big three to send the game to double overtime, Monta Ellis hit one with just over 30 seconds left in that second OT to give the Mavericks the lead. Pau Gasol puts up 29 points (but on 25 shots) and has 14 boards, but in the end the Mavericks just executed a little better in the clutch, and that vaunted Bulls defense just could not contain the high powered Mavericks offense. This just wasn’t the West beating the East (again), this was one of the best of the West going into arguably the best team in the East’s home and winning.

source:  Kirk Hinrich. You can never say “this team lost because of this guy” or “this one play” because a lot of little things, so many different plays go into any outcome. But this felt pretty close. Following a pair of Gasol free throws the Bulls were up three with four seconds left in regulation. If you’re Chicago do you just foul up three and give up only two free throws? Tom Thibodeau wanted to. Monta Ellis was bringing the ball up and Hinrich tried to make the professional, smart foul but waited too long and with a second left Ellis started to go up for the shot as he took the foul. It was an obvious call — three free throws. Ellis sank them and the game went to overtime. Eventually the Mavs got the win.

source:  Stephen Curry. Cold blooded killer. Curry picked up the final three of his team-high 22 points when he drained the game winner with two seconds left to give his Warriors a victory over a feisty Magic team. That’s 10 in a row for Golden State, and that’s the hard way to do it.

source:  Eric Bledsoe, Goran Dragic. This is what it looks like when all of the Suns’ backcourt if firing at once — they combined for 61 points on 35 shots, were 6-of-10 from three (that was mostly Dragic), they had 10 assists and eight steals. They flat-out owned the Pacers backcourt and were the reasons the Suns picked up a comfortable win at home over the Pacers.

source:  Anthony Davis. Kevin Durant got the top billing here because it’s just great to have KD back in the game, but the Pelicans won and Davis is the reason — 25 points, 10 rebounds, six steals, and four blocks. He has been the best player in the NBA this young season and has lifted the Pelicans up to .500. Oh, and he did this to Kendrick Perkins.

Nets GM Sean Marks gets suspended for going into ref’s locker room after Game 4

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Emotions are high as the playoffs move into the second week. Things got a little testy between the Brooklyn Nets and the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday night as Jared Dudley got in the face of Joel Embiid after the Sixers big man committed a hard foul on Jared Allen.

That caused Ben Simmons and Jimmy Butler to respond to Dudley, who overreacted to a good, hard playoff foul by Embiid. The result of the fracas was an ejection for Butler and Dudley, and a flagrant 1 on embiid.

But apparently that’s not the end of the disciplinary process for the NBA.

Nets general manager Sean Marks went into the officials locker room after the game — no doubt to discuss what happened here — which is a big problem in the eyes of the league.

According to a release by the NBA, Marks has been suspended for one game without pay and has been fined $25,000.

Marks will be suspended for Game 5 between these two teams on April 23rd.

The playoffs are high-stakes, but Embiid blocking the crap out of somebody shouldn’t result in someone going crazy like Dudley did.

Philadelphia beat the Nets, 112-108.

Everyone’s hero is dad who pulls son away from Nets/76ers fracas (VIDEO)

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Fathers everywhere can relate to this one.

You set up a bonding experience with your son or daughter, one you hope will leave an impression on them and create a memory that will last a lifetime… for example, you get courtside seats, just behind the basket, for one of the first NBA playoff games in Brooklyn, ever.

Then everything hits the fan.

Joel Embiid commits a flagrant foul on Jarrett Allen, Jared Dudley rushes in and shoves Embiid to stand up for his teammate, Jimmy Butler runs in to shove Dudley on the same premise, and suddenly there is a wave of large professional athletes about to trample you and your son. So, you grab him, move onto the court, and get out of the way.

There were two fathers with the same thought, one on either side of the fracas that spills into the first row.

Well done Dads. Well done, indeed.

Andrew Bogut says he plans to return to Australian league next season

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Unable to find a new NBA contract for this season, Andrew Bogut went home. The Australia native signed to play for the Sydney Kings in Australia’s NBL, where Bogut ended up being the league MVP and Defensive Player of the Year, leading the Kings on a deep playoff run.

When that run ended, the Golden State Warriors came calling, asking him to fill a role — a role that got much larger after DeMarcus Cousins tore his quad. Bogut has played well for the Warriors in the postseason, and there is a good chance Cousins will not be back in Golden State (the Warriors can only offer him a small raise off what he made this season, that likely will not be enough, even after the injury), so the Warriors may try to retain Bogut for next season.

However, Bogut says he is returning to Australia. Speaking to Matt Logue from the Sunday Telegraph in Sydney, Bogut said he gave his word to the Kings he would return.

“The be all and end all is that I gave my word (to the Kings)… That is basically what it comes down to…

“Someone outside of the Warriors could offer me a deal that would be pretty lucrative and a decent one-year deal, but I’m sold and locked in on coming to the Sydney Kings again to try and better what we did last season.”

Saying you’ll walk away from a lot of money and actually doing it are two different things, but Bogut is a man who stands by his word. He probably returns to Sydney for next season.

When that season ends, however, don’t be shocked to see Bogut back somewhere in the NBA helping a team make a playoff run.

Joel Embiid calls Jared Dudley “a nobody” (but NBA Twitter shows Dudley love)

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Jared Dudley has been in the face of the Philadelphia 76ers all series.

He was the guy who said Ben Simmons was “average” in the halfcourt (which echoed every scouting report on Simmons ever), prompting Simmons to respond, “It’s coming from Jared Dudley. C’mon.” The feud between the Sixers and Dudley was brewing.

Then came Sunday, when Dudley was ejected after coming to the defense of teammate Jarrett Allen, who had taken a hard foul from Joel Embiid. Dudley pushed Embiid, then Jimmy Butler pushed Dudley, then everybody got in a shoving match, and when the dust settled Dudley and Butler were ejected.

In his postgame interview after the Philly win, Embiid said Dudley was “a nobody.”

“First of all, he’s a nobody. And when opponents try to do stuff like that, that’s just to get us out of the game. Especially, I’m too valuable for my team. That’s why I didn’t react.”

That may be how the Sixers feel about Dudley at this point, but Nets fans and NBA Twitter loved the way Dudley stood up to Embiid and everyone else. This is just a taste.