McCollum, who is averaging more than 21 points a game for Portland, has a strained left knee. He’ll be re-evaluated next week, but at this point there’s no timetable for his return. The injury comes at an inopportune time for the Blazers, who sit in fourth in the tight Western Conference standings with 12 games left to secure home-court advantage. “Mentally, I don’t want him to have to rush it,” Lillard said about McCollum’s return. “When he does come back I want him to be himself and be healthy, so in my mind, we’re going to finish the regular season without him, maybe the last couple of games of the regular season. I think that’s how I should think of it, knowing that we have to have a great effort for these last 12 games, planning on not having him out there.”
January 22, 2021 | 10:23 am EST Update
Shams Charania: Free agent center Alex Len has agreed to a one-year deal with the Washington Wizards, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium. After clearing waivers, Len had multiple suitors and chose opportunity with Wizards, who needed depth in frontcourt.
Curry also wanted clarity on whether officials could review an ejection in the future under similar circumstances. “It’s pretty self-explanatory,” Curry said of the questionable second technical. “He’s been very vocal with James. I know he had already gotten a tech early in the game and obviously mindful of that, he was just talking to his teammate. The refs got confused. And I don’t know what the rules are in that situation when it’s pretty clear who he was talking to, and I don’t know if you can take it back in the moment, but it was pretty glaring that he was talking to his own teammate and kind of unfortunate that it got confused, so move on.”
In addition, there is an ongoing debate of how much a defence can truly impact an opponent’s 3-point percentage? Frequency, sure, but accuracy is less certain. Anecdotally, though, opponents seem to be more prepared for the Raptors cadre of shot-bothers to fly by them. Yet, it remains part of the strategy. “It’s a really fine line in the game,” Nick Nurse said before the win over Dallas earlier in the week. “We normally want to jump by when we know the shot is going to be taken. What you’re doing there is putting a maximum contest on it. It takes a little bit to be able to do that. Kyle (Lowry) is really good at that, those experienced guys like Fred (VanVleet). But after listening to Green bark at various points throughout the night, hearing his frustration one more time apparently was enough, in the officials’ minds at the time, to warrant an ejection. “At halftime Ben Taylor came out and told me that it was a mistake,” Kerr said. “That John Butler didn’t realize that Draymond was yelling at his teammate. He thought he was yelling at him.”
Kobe and Gianna Bryant will be honored in Reggio Emilia where Kobe had lived for two years when he was a child. The city of Reggio Emilia will name a square after Kobe and Gianna Bryant next January 26th, one year after their tragic deaths.
January 22, 2021 | 3:55 am EST Update
Washington is expected to check in on Len if he does clear waivers, according to someone familiar with their plans. It is unclear how strong their interest would be, as they are exploring several options.
Your name has popped up in trade rumors a bit over the last year. Do you keep up with trade rumors or do you try to block them out? Kendrick Nunn: “I pretty much block them out unless my agent contacts and tells me that there’s a possibility that I could get traded. Anything on social media and stuff, obviously I’m on there so it comes up and I read it, but I try to just ignore it and stick to what my team tells me.”