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Around The World: March 13

03/13/12
  1. Written by: DHawes22  / avg. rating: 5.0

    March 13

    Trail Blazers: Preview: Trail Blazers At Pacers
    "We've had a five-game losing streak a couple of weeks ago, then we won six straight," said Pacers head coach Frank Vogel. "We know we're a good team. We know the schedule is going to hit you hard sometimes, and you've got to do the best you can to manage it."

    Oregon Live: Trail Blazers notebook: Jamal Crawford talks about trade rumors, Aldridge heats up
    "At the end of the day, I chose to come here," Crawford said. "I want to be here. I don't know how to approach the situation, honestly. I haven't talked to anybody in the organization. I'm just trying to stay ready for whatever. Hopefully we can finish what we started. If not, well, it's a business."

    Oregon Live: Trail Blazers do some bonding during offday on the road
    "Every good streak starts with one win," Crawford said. "No matter where it was at and who it was against, it starts with one win. At the end of the day, people don't look at that. They look at wins and losses. We'll take the win, we needed it."

    Rip City Projects: Game 42 Preview: Portland Trail Blazers at Indiana Pacers
    "Portland’s game plan Tuesday should be pretty simple: pass the ball to LaMarcus Aldridge. LA has a history with David West, playing his first season outside of the Western Conference, so that’s a match-up the Blazers should be able to exploit to a degree. Portland should also have an advantage and the other forward position. I know what you’re saying, isn’t Danny Granger one of the best small forwards in the league? Yes he is. But Tuesday he’s very likely going to have to defend and be defended by Gerald Wallace. I give Portland the advantage at this position because a good offensive and defensive game from Crash should be able to neutralize Granger."

    Blazersedge: Blazers G Elliot Williams Dislocates Left Shoulder; MRI "Abnormal"
    "You just don't know his situation for the rest of the season. Really unfortunate situation. We hope that it's not anything that's going to require -- possibly -- surgery but that could be the case."

    Blazersedge: Portland Trail Blazers vs. Indiana Pacers Preview
    "The problems for Portland tonight will come on the offensive end, obviously. The Blazers don't score well on the road anyway. Indiana's no great shakes offensively but I'd be on their offensive being able to overcome Portland's at their own joint before I'd bet on Portland being able to blitz through that Indy D. The Pacers have size and skill to match Portland, plus toughness that the Blazers have lacked since early on in the season. Portland's best hope is to throttle the Pacers in return and hope to escape with an ugly win. Understand that the guy with the ball will probably want to score. Do an amazing job on the boards. Take your chances."

    ESPN: Assessing Jamal Crawford
    "Crawford is likely to opt out after the season, making him a tricky player to put in a deal unless it's a salary dump, and he's too good to be involved in a salary dump. (The same, incidentally, applies to fellow Blazers trade target Gerald Wallace). He doesn't give you much defensively, but he made his living with the Atlanta Hawks as a go-to guy for the second unit who can spot 10 minutes as the backup point guard. That's the ideal role for him; unfortunately, Felton's situation has pushed him into more of a primary ballhandling role."

    Rip City Project: Game 41 Recap: Blazers 110, Wizards 99
    "Offensively, too, the Blazers looked better on Saturday than they have in a while. The ball was getting inside to LaMarcus Aldridge (fantastically efficient line from LA: 12-of-15 from the field 6-of-6 from the line, 10 rebounds, three assists, two blocks, a steal, and a game-high +12). When the ball wasn’t getting inside to LA, Portland’s guards avoided playing one-on-one and chucking jumpers at the rim. The ball was actually moving. Jump shots were actually open. The Blazers shot a more than decent 51% from the field, and if they’d been able to knock down a couple of threes (4-of-17 from deep as a team), this would have been a legit blowout."

    Ball Don't Lie: Breaking: The New York Knicks are acting exactly like the New York Knicks
    "The New York Knicks have lost six in a row, shocking just about anyone that thought they'd at least have the lowest seed in the Eastern playoff bracket wrapped up in spite of the team's continued growing pains. Heading into Tuesday, New York is tied with Milwaukee for that final spot, but because the Bucks have beaten New York twice this season, Scott Skiles' flailing crew owns the tiebreaker over February's hottest NBA team. And as with everything that ever seems to happen with these ridiculous New York Knicks, this all makes no sense and all the sense in the world all at once."

    Ball Don't Lie: As Thursday’s NBA trade deadline nears, how do you solve a problem like the New Orleans Hornets?
    "On the other side of the coin, Aminu has mostly looked worse on both ends of the floor for New Orleans than he did in his rookie year with the Los Angeles Clippers, but he is putting up strong rebound rates for a swingman at age 21, so there may be something salvageable there. Similarly, Henry hasn't looked especially impressive in 22 games since coming over from the Memphis Grizzlies, but both player and team are still very much figuring out who he is after a right knee injury cost him more than half his rookie season and torn ligaments in his right ankle delayed his New Orleans debut until late January. His combination of size, athleticism, the rumor of a 3-point stroke and outings like his recent 19 points in 24 minutes effort against the defending champion Dallas Mavericks make the 20-year-old an intriguing low-cost option for Demps to nurture."

    Ball Don't Lie: Video: Bismack Biyombo had a game-saving block at the buzzer
    "In the final seconds, Bobcats rookie big man Bismack Biyombo proved that maxim with the best defensive play of the night. Up two points with under 10 seconds to play, the Bobcats had a fairly inexplicable defensive breakdown and gave Hornets wing Trevor Ariza an open path to the basket for a dunk. As the last line of defense, Biyombo stonewalled him with a textbook two-handed block, giving the Bobcats a 73-71 victory, just their sixth of the season."

    The Basketball Jones: With teams in need, why will this year’s trade deadline be so boring?
    "Ellis is not good enough to be a number one guy, and probably isn’t good enough to be an elite number two either, but he could potentially be a mighty fine number three for a team needing that one last kick-on. Jennings has struggled badly with efficiency since his 55 point outing, and it’s never a good a sign when a rebuilding team considers (and then re-considers) trading its 22-year-old leading scorer, but enough talent exists to justify taking the gamble. The same is true of Evans, whose complete inability to fit into a team concept on both ends of the court rather undermines his statistical output, yet whose talents, both physical gifts and ball skills, will always tantalize. And if you can live with the sideshow that is McGee, you have a big man as productive as almost any other. But struggling teams dealing productive youngsters is not what trade deadlines are normally made of. Definitely being “available” is not synonymous with definitely being traded."

    DIME: Daily Fantasy Basketball Diagnosis: 3.13
    "Brandon Jennings finished with 34 points, seven rebounds, seven assists, two blocks and six three-pointers last night. He shot 52 percent (12-23) from the floor, 80 percent (4-5) from the free-throw line and had one turnover. After struggling through February, Jennings is averaging 25.0 points, 4.0 boards, 7.1 assists, 1.3 steals and 3.0 threes in his first seven games this month. He’s been a top 30 stud so far this season."

    SLAM: Post-Up: Hold You Down
    "For the first few quarters, it looked like Kris Humphries might will the Nets to a win without Deron Williams in uniform. But even Hump’s career-high 31 points, plus 18 boards, weren’t enough for New Jersey to hold off the Bucks, who all of a sudden are tied with New York for the 8-seed in the Eastern Conference. Four different Milwaukee players had at least 6 assists, including Brandon Jennings, who went off for 34 points, 7 dimes and 7 rebounds to counter Humphries’ big night. Milwaukee erased a double-digit deficit, tying the game at the third-quarter buzzer on a Beno Udrih 3-pointer before Jennings hit two to open the fourth, putting the Bucks out in front. Last time these two teams met it was Ersan Ilyasova who did the heavy lifting with a 20-20 night, but last night he scored just 4 points and had 3 boards. Drew Gooden added 23 points, 8 rebounds and 7 assists for the 18-24 Bucks."

    SLAM via CSNNE: Celtics GM Danny Ainge: ‘Rondo’s Not Getting Traded’
    "“A number of Boston Celtics players will continue to be the subject of trade rumors up until the 3 p.m. deadline on Thurday. But there’s one player that isn’t going anywhere – Rajon Rondo. ‘Rondo’s not being traded,’ Danny Ainge, Boston’s president of basketball operations, said prior to the Celtics facing the Los Angeles Clippers. ‘I don’t know how many times I have to say it. Rondo’s not being traded."

    SLAM via Fox Sports: Dominique Wilkins Urges LeBron James to Enter the NBA Dunk Contest
    "I’d love to see him do it,’ Wilkins said. ‘I think he would win it. I really do.’ Wilkins entered five times in an era when all the top guys regularly showed up. He won in 1985 and 1990 while starring for Atlanta. ‘Any compliment I can get from a great, especially like Dominique, is very humbling, just knowing what he meant to this league,’ James said. ‘He was an unbelievable talent, and he’s a great guy, too. I’ve had an opportunity to sit and talk to him a few times. It’s very humbling.’ But Wilkins’ praise doesn’t mean James, who bypassed the event for the ninth time in his nine NBA seasons last month in Orlando, has any newfound desire to try it. ‘I don’t know,’ James, 27, said. ‘We’ll see. I’m getting older. I’m not getting younger.’ ‘I think it’s disappointing that all the great players that have athleticism don’t get in it,’ said Wilkins. ‘For whatever reason, there’s so much going on that weekend, for whatever reason guys just don’t to do it anymore "

    ESPN: Fact or Fiction: The Magic should just hold on to Dwight Howard.
    "Fact. He's leaving, but why not let him? Play the long game, start from scratch, get a 2013 lottery pick. In the NBA, there are worse fates than being hideously awful and becoming a 10th seed is one of them. And who knows? Maybe Dwight will stay."

           



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