Giannis Antetokounmpo suspended one game

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Salman Ali: Russell Westbrook with strained quadriceps muscle in his right leg. Will be out for Friday’s game against Philadelphia and re-evaluated before the playoffs pic.twitter.com/SQmjuMVwcX

The Boston Celtics have signed head coach Brad Stevens to a contract extension, the team announced today. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed. Stevens, who was named the franchise’s 17th head coach on July 3, 2013, has produced a 318-245 win-loss record (.565) in six-plus seasons with the Celtics. His 318 wins are the fourth-most by any Celtics coach in franchise history (795-Auerbach, 427-Heinsohn, 416-Rivers).
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He confirmed that Wednesday with IndyStar: “This has been done for a while now.” It was signed in July. And the Pacers came to him about it. Former NBA coach Jeff Van Gundy said on ESPN’s Zach Lowe’s podcast last week that McMillan’s job was “in trouble” which led to speculation about who his replacement might be. With his deal being done for more than month, that clearly had no impact on the Pacers getting the deal done now.
“I’m looking forward to what we look like with all of those guys,” McMillan said. We haven’t had a lot of time to have them all together.” They haven’t had their other All-Star, Domantas Sabonis, in the restart because of a left foot issue (plantar fasciitis). “My hope is that we will be healthy next year and see what we can do with a full roster,” McMillan said. “I’ll have that opportunity and the organization thought it was only fair. It’s just another year but I’m OK with that.”

Myles Turner on Victor Oladipo rumors

Since he’s come back to you guys, there’s been some noise about him looking ahead towards his free agency. And, you know, you’ve been around the league long enough now where you see this stuff all the time, but teams like the Heat get mentioned. From your perspective, what do you make of that free agency talk a year in advance? Myles Turner: I mean, it’s just the media doing what the media does. They have to gaslight certain situations, and you know I don’t think much of it, because like you said, it’s really a year out. Ultimately, it’s going to be up to him and the decision he wants to make, or the decision the front office wants to make. So, until then, all you can do is control what you can control and just hoop on the floor. I think if he continues to be himself, then he can kind of create his own destiny, so I don’t pay much attention to all that stuff.
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Four bubbles next season?

Meanwhile, there is talk of as many as four bubbles next season, according to sources. Given the league’s current success housing 22 teams at the Wide World of Sports Complex, a return to Disney is a given, as is using Las Vegas, the runner-up to Orlando this year. There just isn’t another city that far west (any city in California, right now, is a non-starter, given the explosion of COVID cases there) with the hotel space and big-event experience of Vegas. One source says New York and the Dallas-Fort Worth area are two other potential bubble cities; New York not only has what would be an otherwise empty Madison Square Garden in Manhattan and Barclays Center in Brooklyn as venues, but also Basketball City, the longtime midtown Manhattan venue by the Hudson with numerous courts available, for potential practices.
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Derrick Favors hopes to be back with Pelicans

“I think I handled it well,” Favors said of transitioning from Utah to New Orleans. “Obviously, a new team and new environment after being in Utah the past eight, nine years, just coming into a new environment, it was challenging and it was fun at the same time. I think I did good. I came in and really just played my role, did my job as a vet, kept guys ready, kept young guys ready, teaching them everything I could help them with and it was fun. “I enjoyed it. I enjoyed the role I was in, I enjoyed being around the young guys, being around this organization. Hopefully, I can come back but we’ll see what happens.”
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Giannis Antetokounmpo regrets headbutting Moe Wagner

“Terrible action,” Antetokounmpo said. “If I could go back, turn back time and go back to that play, I wouldn’t do it. But at the end of the day, we’re all human, we all make mistakes. I think I’ve done a great job all year, in my career at keeping my composure and focus on the game, but at the end of the day, we’re human and make mistakes. But at the end of the day, you learn from it, keep playing good basketball and keep moving forward.”
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Paul George, Damian Lillard clear the air

Before things got any worse, Paul George wanted to make sure things didn’t escalate any further. According to Chris Haynes, that’s exactly what George did. “George recently reached out to Damian Lillard to clear the air,” Haynes said. “Explaining that he had no beef, and clarifying that it was just competitive banter on his part.” Despite how upset Lillard seemed at the Clippers, he was willing to hear George out. “Lillard apologized remarks made by one of his family members, but stated why he said what he said after that loss to the Clippers,” Haynes said.

Andre Iguodala to retire in one year or two

Just as practiced ended, Miami Heat forward Andre Iguodala disappeared into the weight room. He then returned to the gym so he could stretch out his 36-year-old body on a yoga mat. It has become almost a yearly tradition. Iguodala remains a valued star on a contending championship team. He also foreshadows an imminent expiration date. “I have about a year or two left,” Iguodala told USA TODAY Sports. “I’m serious this time. I got two left.”
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Executive of the Year award: Rob Pelinka getting no love

Among the voting constituents sampled, there seemed to be little support for the candidacy of Los Angeles GM Rob Pelinka, who helped a massive turnaround to vault the Lakers into the top seed in the West. In back-to-back years, Pelinka landed top-10 players in James and then Davis. He cleared out cap space and pivoted fast to get key supporting players such as Danny Green and Avery Bradley after holding out for days waiting to see if Leonard would sign with the Lakers. And he helped hold the team together after the tragic death of Kobe Bryant, who was one of Pelinka’s closest friends.
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Kyle Kuzma wins game for Lakers

Kyle Kuzma was the hero as the Los Angeles Lakers trumped the Denver Nuggets 124-121 in the NBA on Monday. Kuzma nailed a three-pointer with 0.4 seconds remaining to see the Lakers past Western Conference rivals the Nuggets at Walt Disney World Resort. The Lakers forward finished with 25 points in Orlando, while LeBron James put up a double-double of 29 points and 12 assists as Anthony Davis contributed 27 points.

Terrence Ross leaves Orlando bubble

Adrian Wojnarowski: Orlando’s Terrence Ross leaves The Bubble for off-site testing. “Orlando Magic guard Terrence Ross had to leave the NBA campus following Sunday’s game against Boston due to a personal, non-Covid medical matter, which required him to undergo some off-site tests as advised by league physicians. Ross will be out tomorrow against Brooklyn and his availability moving forward will depend on test results and NBA quarantine protocols.”
via wojespn
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The most obvious area where a drastic change could be made immediately is in the coaching ranks. Gentry has been on the hot seat practically since the day he arrived in New Orleans, and when a team hires a new executive, it’s usually a matter of time before the boss gets antsy and decides to make a change. The worst-kept secret in the NBA is that Gentry’s time with the Pelicans won’t last much longer. Names of potential replacements have already been floated in the media, and the season isn’t even over yet.
Sticking with basketball, do you continue to consider you bought robbed by the referees within the 2006 finals? Mark Cuban: 100 p.c. Due to ineptitude or one thing else? Mark Cuban: Ineptitude plus one thing else. I’ve had refs inform me that I wasn’t their favourite individual. In order that they have been screwing you deliberately? Mark Cuban: With out query.
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Storyline: Officiating Complaints
Did you speak to the league about that? Mark Cuban: I did. They investigated it and mentioned they couldn’t show it. That yr was the final yr, as a result of I raised such hell, when many of the refereeing assignments within the finals have been based mostly on seniority. Now there’s an try and make it based mostly on job efficiency. As soon as I went via the record, proper round that 2006 timeframe, of all of the just lately employed referees. I used to be curious the place we have been hiring these folks from. These weren’t refs that have been within the pressure-cooker video games, Indiana-Purdue, Duke-North Carolina video games. They have been from these small conferences. I’m like, Why are we hiring refs from these small conferences? Seems that the man who was answerable for officiating for these small conferences was the previous coach of the individual chargeable for hiring the referees. There was this connection between the 2 of them, and so he wasn’t hiring one of the best. We employed any individual from the Rucker League! I don’t even wish to go into all the small print. It was a joke.
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Let’s get into that dialog. Mark Cuban: White folks don’t like to speak about race. It’s uncomfortable for a white individual to say the time period “white race” or “white people,” as a result of there’s a right away affiliation with white supremacists. And while you use the time period “white privilege,” folks get defensive. “I can’t be a racist.” We attempt to say, “I see everybody the same,” however I realized once we went via our sexual-harassment problem that treating all people the identical isn’t the identical as treating all people equally. I used to assume that if I advised a silly joke to David, I might inform a silly joke to Sue and I might inform a silly joke to an African-American as a result of I didn’t assume that it was racist, and if I’m colorblind, I can’t be a part of the issue.
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Storyline: Social Justice Messages
Mark Cuban: George Floyd’s loss of life, it modified me. It actually did — listening to our African-American gamers discuss private experiences and seeing the ubiquity of all of it. Like, after Trayvon Martin’s loss of life, I talked about strolling down the road and the way I might cross to the opposite facet if I noticed a black child with a hoodie or a white bald man with tattoos coming towards me. That was my method of claiming: “I don’t see color. I try to evaluate each person individually, but I have prejudices that all people have.” I received’t say that anymore. Colorblind isn’t the best way to be. You’ve bought to acknowledge the variations. When folks discuss Black Lives Matter, they’re not saying white lives don’t matter; they’re saying that black folks and completely different ethnicities have been mistreated. And while you see any individual who’s mistreated, you assist them. That’s what I got here to comprehend.
via Code List