Terry Rozier

Tests on Jamal Murray’s ankle reportedly come back clean; he’s out multiple games

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Considering how it looked when it happened, this could have been much worse.

Denver’s Jamal Murray had to be helped off the court Wednesday night after spraining his ankle when trying to close out on a Terry Rozier corner three (Murray stepped on Rozier’s foot). X-rays last night came back clean, but after the game, Nuggets coach Mike Malone described Murray’s ankle as “rather large, which is kind of scary.”

The good news is later testing — meaning an MRI — also came back clean, reports Nick Kosmider of The Athletic.

Expect Murray to miss more than a couple of games.

This is a blow, the Nuggets are 9 points per 100 possessions worse when Murray is off the court, with most of the downfall coming on the offensive end (although there is a lot of noise in that stat because he is often paired with Nikola Jokic). Expect to see a lot more Monte Morris until Murray returns.

Three Things to Know: This is the confident Markelle Fultz we’ve been waiting for

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Every day in the NBA there is a lot to unpack, so every weekday morning throughout the season we will give you the three things you need to know from the last 24 hours in the NBA.

1) That’s the confident Markelle Fultz we’ve been waiting for, he has 21-point triple-double to lead Magic past Lakers. When Philadelphia threw in the towel on Markelle Fultz and the nerve issue that wrecked his jump shot, they did the former No. 1 pick a favor and sent him to Orlando. A favor because they got him out of the bright spotlight of Philadelphia — a big market and a team with big expectations — and to a franchise that has developed players, an out of the way place on the NBA map where he could play, make mistakes, and not have his every jumper over-analyzed.

Coach Steve Clifford has been bringing Fultz along slowly, building his confidence game-by-game, making him a starter, giving him rope, and not just yanking him after every mistake.

Wednesday night we saw how well that has worked — this is now a confident Fultz who will body up LeBron James, move him out of the way, and get a bucket.

Fultz had a triple-double — 21 points, 11 rebounds, 10 assists — and was the heart of Orlando’s upset win against the Anthony Davis-less Lakers on Wednesday, 119-118. That ended the Lakers’ nine-game win streak. It was Fultz’s best game of the season as he took over late and played fearlessly.

Fultz still has a ways to go to live up to the potential that made him a No. 1 pick — he was 0-of-4 in this game on shots outside the paint and is nowhere near a threat from three yet with his work-in-progress jumper — but he’s playing with confidence now. The Magic have a real player at the point.

Orlando also has a real player in Aaron Gordon, and he had a couple of monster dunks against the Lakers.

Damn.

2) Kyrie Irving after Nets loss: “We need one more piece or two more pieces” to go with him and Kevin Durant. After missing 26 games Kyrie Irving is back and, well, be careful what you wish for Brooklyn.

The Nets got their star player back a few games ago, but after Wednesday’s loss to Philadelphia — where the Sixers had another gear and dominated the fourth quarter 31-16 — Irving did not exactly give the Saint Crispin’s Day speech to fire up the troops for battle:

Irving was 6-of-21 shooting for the night and 1-of-7 in the fourth quarter, looking like a guy with some tired legs playing his first back-to-back since his return. He sounded frustrated and spoke his mind.

Do the Nets need more “pieces” to compete with the Bucks at the top of the East? Maybe. Probably. But it’s tough to judge with Irving just returned from injury, Kevin Durant likely out for the season, Caris LeVert also just back from injury, Garrett Temple out, and all the new faces still adjusting to playing next to each other. This season was always a placeholder until the Nets got healthy next season. Maybe Brooklyn can add some quality role players over the summer, but it feels early to call out the organization like that.

The Nets brought in Sean Marks as GM, hired Kenny Atkinson as coach, and built a Spursian “team first, lunchpail work ethic” squad that ground its way to the playoffs last season without “stars,” then went 13-13 without Irving (and Durant) to get back in the playoff mix this season. The Nets have an identity. With Irving now, and Durant over the summer, the Nets will add elite talent but big egos to that mix, guys used to winning by doing things their way. It’s an interesting chemistry experiment, one where we already seem to be getting a reaction.

3) Nuggets star point guard Jamal Murray leaves game with a sprained ankle, he’s going to miss some time. This is a blow to a Nuggets team sitting second in the West — their second-best player is going to miss some time.

Jamal Murray pushed out to contest a three-pointer by Terry Rozier and appeared to land on Rozier’s foot. You can see Murray’s ankle roll in the video. He instantly grabbed at it, and he was eventually helped off the floor by teammates.

This quote from Nuggets coach Mike Malone postgame did not sound positive.

Murray is averaging 17.6 points and 4.6 assists a game for Denver. Expect to see Monte Morris get some more run with Murray out, but this is a setback for a Nuggets team in the middle of a tight race in the West.

Denver’s Jamal Murray leaves game with ankle injury: X-rays negative

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DENVER — Denver Nuggets point guard Jamal Murray was ruled out for the rest of the game against the Charlotte Hornets after leaving late in the first half after rolling his left ankle.

Murray tried to contest a 3-point shot by Terry Rozier on Wednesday night and appeared to land on Rozier’s foot. Murray instantly grabbed at his ankle as play was stopped. He was helped off the floor by teammates and then placed in a wheelchair once he left the court.

Murray had five points and one assist against the Hornets before leaving. While no grade of sprain or timeline was given, it sounds as if Murray is going to miss some time.

He was also dealing with a sore back. Murray is averaging 17.9 points a game this season.

The short-handed Nuggets were already without Gary Harris (groin) and Paul Millsap (bruised knee).

Reserve Monte Morris figured to get more time with the first unit in Murray’s absence.

Watch Luka Doncic’s NBA-leading 10th triple-double, but Mavs still fall to Hornets in OT

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Luka Doncic continues to impress.

Saturday night he racked up 39 points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists — his league-leading 10th triple-double of the season. Doncic got his buckets at the rim, hit five threes, and tore Charlotte up on the pick-and-roll.

It wasn’t enough, and Doncic had a crucial turnover and missed two threes late in regulation that could have won the game.

Instead, Terry Rozier hit an off-balance lay-up near the end of regulation, then capped his 29-points with the go-ahead three in overtime.

Devonte Graham added 27 points and 13 assists for Charlotte in the win.

Hornets’ Terry Rozier fined $25,000 for throwing ball into stands of game he thought was over

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Adding insult to injury, Terry Rozier‘s celebration that helped cost his team the game Friday night will now cost him a chunk of his next paycheck, too.

The NBA has fined Rozier $25,000 for throwing the ball into the stands, the league’s standard fine for the move.

It’s why Rozier threw the ball into the stands that was unique. As time expired Friday night, Rozier grabbed the rebound on a Chris Paul missed three at the and thought his team had won, so he threw the ball in celebration. Except, the score was tied 94-94, and the game was headed to overtime.

Throwing the ball into the stands during the game is an automatic technical foul, which was assessed to start overtime. Paul hit the free throw, so the score at the start of overtime was 95-94 Oklahoma City.

Throwing the ball into the stands is also an automatic fine.

Someday Rozier will look back on this and laugh. That day is likely not the day his paycheck is a little smaller.