Getty

Glenn Robinson’s last-second 3-pointer sends Pacers over Hawks, 97-96 (VIDEO)

Leave a comment

ATLANTA (AP) Glenn Robinson III hit a 3-pointer with sixth-tenths of a second remaining, Paul George scored 34 points and the Indiana Pacers rallied in the closing minutes to beat the Atlanta Hawks 97-96 on Sunday.

Jeff Teague, in his first game back at Philips Arena after spending his first seven seasons with the Hawks, added 16 points and six assists.

Tim Hardaway Jr. finished with 24 points and Paul Millsap had 23 points and 10 rebounds for Atlanta, which has lost five of seven. Millsap’s 3-point attempt fell off the rim at the buzzer.

After Hardaway missed a 3, Teague pushed the ball up the floor and passed to George, who whipped the ball to C.J. Miles on the left side of the perimeter. Miles fed Robinson from the left corner for the wide-open shot.

Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer missed the game after getting suspended for bumping into a referee during Friday’s loss to Cleveland. Assistant Darvin Ham took his place.

George had 24 points at halftime, 10 in the third quarter and was 12-for-16 from the field, 6 of 7 beyond the arc, entering the fourth. He went 0-for-3 in the final period.

Indiana had lost eight of 10. Atlanta was coming off a five-point home loss in which Cleveland set an NBA single-game record with 25 3s.

The Hawks missed 10 of their first 14 attempts on 3s before Dennis Schroder‘s trey cut the lead to 65-61 in the third. Schroder added a 3 with 2:08 left in the game and assisted on Millsap’s 12-footer to give the Hawks a 96-90 lead with 1:43 remaining.

Atlanta was up 13 early in the second quarter and fell flat as Indiana went on a 20-4 run to go up 39-36 on Teague’s floater 6 minutes later. Indiana took its biggest lead of the game, 11 points, when George hit a layup midway through the third.

Schroder finished with 18 points.

WELCOME BACK

Teague joined Al Horford and Kyle Korver as former Hawks playing their first game as a visitor at Philips Arena this season. All three left with a win. The crowd gave Teague a standing ovation during a video tribute between the first and second quarters. Horford, now with Boston, was booed in his first game back, likely because he left as a free agent. Korver, like Teague, was traded away.

TIP-INS

Pacers: Had lost 15 of 16 at Philips Arena. … F-C Myles Turner, the team’s second-leading scorer this season, went 2-for-7 from the field and finished with five points. … Coach Nate McMillan said F Lavoy Allen tried to warm up but couldn’t play because of a sore left knee. Thaddeus Young, battling a sore left wrist, played 24 minutes and scored four points.

Hawks: Ham debuted as head coach. He’s been on the staff since Budenholzer took charge in 2013. … PG Jose Calderon, claimed off waivers before the game, sat on the bench in uniform. Ham said he would not play. Calderon, in his 12th season, will play for his sixth team in the last five years. He averaged 3.3 points and 2.1 assists in 24 games this season before the Los Angeles Lakers bought out his contract last Monday.

BRUTAL NUMBERS

The Hawks went 19-for-31 on free throws, including a 5-for-11 performance by Dwight Howard. The Pacers were 12-for-21 from the foul line.

UP NEXT

Pacers: At Charlotte on Monday. The Pacers began the game 10-20 on the road.

Hawks: Host Golden State on Monday. Atlanta has lost nine of 10 in the series.

USA Basketball to host World Cup qualifier vs. Uruguay on Sept. 14 in Las Vegas

Getty Images
Leave a comment

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado (AP) — USA Basketball’s quest to qualify for next year’s FIBA World Cup will resume Sept. 14 in Las Vegas, where the Americans will face Uruguay.

That will be the first U.S. game in the second qualifying round for next year’s world championships in China.

Like the first round, the U.S. will continue being coached by Jeff Van Gundy and will have a roster made up primarily of G League players. The Americans went 5-1 in the first round.

The U.S. and Uruguay are among 12 teams from the Americas zone vying for seven World Cup spots. The others are Argentina, Panama, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Venezuela, Brazil, Chile, Canada, the Dominican Republic and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The United States is a heavy favorite to qualify, then will send NBA players to China for the World Championships (there is a workout for some of those players coming up in Las Vegas in a week).

Second-round qualifying ends in late February. The World Cup begins in August 2019.

Mavericks sign second-round pick Jalen Brunson to first-rounder style contract

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Dallas is excited about the potential of Jalen Brunson.

The point guard who led Villanova to a national championship last April fell to the 33rd pick in the draft last June, high in the second round, and Dallas traded up a spot to get him from Atlanta. The Mavericks were ecstatic, and to the surprise of nobody they have reached terms on a contract with him.

What is a bit of a surprise is the Mavericks gave him a first-rounder style contract — four years with some guaranteed money for the first three of them — reports Shams Charania of The Vertical at Yahoo Sports.

At Summer League in Las Vegas Brunson showed the qualities that Dallas liked in him — he’s a high IQ player with polish, and he’s a pass-first floor general — but his weaknesses were also exposed. He has to shoot better (23 percent in Summer League) and his defense needs to improve.

Both of those can happen, Summer League is more of a chance for teams to benchmark players than make decisions about them. Brunson reportedly has a great work ethic, he can figure the NBA game out.

Dallas is betting that he will.

Kemba Walker: “As far as seeing me in New York, I doubt it”

Getty Images
2 Comments

Kemba Walker is an All-Star level point guard who is heading into a contract season — he is a free agent in 2019. Walker is also a New York native, born in the Bronx he attended Rice High School in Harlem.

Combine all that with the fact both the Knicks and Nets will have enough cap space for a max (or more than one max) contract next summer, and you’ve got yourself a rumor.

One Walker shot down talking to Michael Scotto of The Athletic.

“As far as seeing me in New York, I doubt it,” Walker replied. “I’m a Hornet, and I’m planning on being a Hornet for a long time, so, yeah, I’m not sure about that (New York).”

Walker has said many times he wants to stay in Charlotte (providing they pay the market rate and are trying to compete).

That said, this is the NBA, so never say never.

A lot of NBA teams have been poised, waiting to see if new Hornets’ GM Mitch Kupchak — with the approval of Michael Jordan — decided to go full rebuild and trade Walker this summer. He has not, talking only about keeping this squad together. The Hornets are a solid team with Walker and Nicolas Batum leading the way, one that could make the playoffs in the East if things break right for new coach James Borrego. However, they will not be anywhere near contenders and if things don’t fall their way they may well miss the playoffs next season. Again. The Hornets also are not a bad team, meaning they are not going to get a high pick (without some lottery luck). They are stuck in the NBA’s middle ground, a place most GMs want to avoid.

Trading Walker could jump-start the rebuild in Charlotte, but the Hornets don’t seem to be going that direction. Yet. This summer they signed Tony Parker, Malik Monk looked good in Summer League, and they got Dwight Howard out of the locker room. They say they are a team poised to make a playoff push.

If that push falls apart early in Charlotte, watch and see if their plans change. And what that could mean for Walker. And the Knicks.

However, as of now, Walker wants to remain a Hornet, and they want to keep him. Which crowds New York out of the picture.

 

Report: Philadelphia tried to recruit Daryl Morey as new GM, was rebuffed

Associated Press
2 Comments

The analytics movement is not dead in Philadelphia.

The Sixers are still searching for a new general manager to replace Bryan Colangelo (who had to resign in the wake of a Twitter scandal), and the rumors have always been about the big guns. David Griffin, the former Cleveland GM inexplicably let go by that franchise, is a name that kept coming up.

But the home of “The Process” wanted to jump back into the analytics waters and try to land the Rockets’ Dayrl Morey, the face of the NBA’s analytics movement. That was shot down, reports Marc Stein of the New York Times.

The Sixers are swinging for the fences right now — they met with LeBron James in free agency, they have tried to get in on the Kawhi Leonard trade sweepstakes, they wanted to meet with Paul George — and landing Morey fits in that mold. Philadelphia already has Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid in house, and feels they are on the verge of contention for years, but that they need one more piece. Morey is not that piece, but the guy who traded for James Harden and Chris Paul in Houston could get someone to come to Philly.

Morey is happy in Houston, however, and he’s staying put.

Instead, the Sixers search will continue. In the interim, coach Brett Brown is filling in a dual role (and doing a solid job, but with the recent run of struggles for teams that had a coach filling both positions it’s unlikely they keep this arrangement long term).