NBA rumors: Zach LaVine feeling better

KC Johnson: Lonzo Ball is changing treatment to address his left knee, per Billy Donovan. Timeline is TBD. It all will depend on his knee responds to this new treatment. Zach LaVine is back stationary shooting. Not running or jumping. But he feels “better,” per Donovan.

More on Lonzo Ball Injury

Rob Schaefer: Billy Donovan says the knee soreness that is holding Lonzo Ball out of tonight’s game is something he’s been dealing with for “a period of time” Felt it during Warriors game, after waking up this AM medical decided best to rest him. Donovan called Ball doubtful for MEM game
Julia Poe: Lonzo Ball listed as questionable due to left knee soreness for tonight’s game against the Celtics. He will be the seventh absent player for the Bulls if he can’t participate in Boston tonight.
Lonzo Ball, along with multiple teammates, will miss the New Orleans Pelicans’ regular season finale against the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday evening. Ball will miss the game with a right thumb sprain, the third straight game he’ll miss to end the season. Along with Ball, Steven Adams (right MTP sprain), Josh Hart (right thumb surgery), Brandon Ingram (left ankle sprain) and Zion Williamson (left hand fracture) all will be out as well on the night. It will be the third straight game that group of five players will miss with the Pelicans losing each of those games.
Will Guillory: SVG says he doesn't believe the team found any structural damage within Lonzo Ball's hips. He's unsure how related the injuries are. Added it had to be frustrating for Ball to be out again after just coming back. Ball missed 7 games due to left hip, out tonight bc of right hip.
Will Guillory: Brandon Ingram and Kira Lewis are questionable once again for tomorrow's game vs Philadelphia, per the Pelicans. Lonzo Ball (left hip flexor soreness) was added to the injury report and is listed as questionable. Ball missed seven games with a right hip flexor strain.
Will Guillory: Lonzo Ball will go back in the starting lineup, per Van Gundy. He added that Ball will have to play a lot tonight bc only three guards are available with Kira out.
Christian Clark: Lonzo Ball downgraded to doubtful tonight. David Griffin said a few minutes ago he'd be surprised if Ball played today or tomorrow.
Andrew Lopez: Stan Van Gundy says Lonzo Ball did practice today and did everything in practice when they went live. Said they’ll see how he feels later before making a determination for tomorrow’s game against Utah.
The New Orleans Pelicans could be without their two starting guards for Wednesday night's matchup against the Los Angeles Clippers. On Tuesday night's injury report, the Pelicans listed Lonzo Ball as out with bilateral knee tendinopathy and Eric Bledsoe as questionable with right eye irritation. A source said the team is treating Ball's injury as day-to-day.
Will Guillory: Source: Lonzo Ball will be active tonight. Plan is to bring him off the bench and play him about 20 minutes.
Anthony Chiang: Shorthanded Pelicans vs. Heat tonight. Per the Pelicans: Lonzo Ball (Right Adductor Strain), Jahlil Okafor (Left Ankle Sprain) and JJ Redick (Left Great Toe Sprain) have been downgraded to OUT. Brandon Ingram (Right Knee Soreness) has been downgraded to QUESTIONABLE.
Will Guillory: Pelicans announce Lonzo Ball (right adductor strain) will be out tomorrow against Houston
Jim Eichenhofer: #Pelicans shootaround update presented by @HUBInsurance, Lonzo Ball (right adductor strain) plans to play vs. Toronto; Ball shooting career-best 38.6% on threes; JJ Redick listed as questionable; New Orleans fourth in #NBA in trey attempts):
Christian Clark: JJ Redick is questionable with a left knee bruise tomorrow against Toronto. Lonzo Ball (right adductor sprain) is probable.
Jennifer Hale: Coach Alvin Gentry says Lonzo Ball should be fine after leaving the Nets game in the 2nd half with cramps. The @PelicansNBA don’t play again until Friday, so lots of time to rest. #Zo
On the court, Ball has been encouraged by what he’s seen over multiple weeks at New Orleans’ voluntary workouts, which have been regularly attended by 15-plus players. “I think we have a chance (to be good). We have a lot of talent. We have a new team, where people have got to get to know each other, so we’ve got to start a little earlier,” Ball said, referring to one reason Pelicans players were motivated to participate. Ball missed 35 games last season due to injury, but said Tuesday of his health, “I’m good. Doing everything, 5-on-5, full-contact. I’m good.”
However, that doesn’t mean Ball is just sitting around and waiting to be healthy again. According to JaVale McGee, Ball has been in the gym every day trying to work his way back to full strength (via FS1’s “The Herd”): When people get injured they tend to go down in spirit but he’s had a great spirit this whole time he’s been injured. He’s been there every day working in the weight room, and this is coming from behind-the-scenes that sees it all. He’s training. He hasn’t missed a training session. You get fined for things like that and people are really paying attention to that, but he hasn’t missed any of that since I’ve been there, so it’s not like he’s not trying to get healthy. He just had a bad injury and it’s been lingering. That’s all it is.
One of the headaches and near-debacles of the final stretch of Johnson’s tenure came in late February. In what could have been a catastrophe, the Lakers needed to prevent point guard Lonzo Ball from undergoing a potential unauthorized surgery on his left ankle that was planned by estranged former business partner Alan Foster and with LaVar Ball’s knowledge, multiple team and league sources told The Athletic.
The Lakers found out about Ball’s situation when Lonzo Ball called General Manager Rob Pelinka, and the organization informed him that they would not allow it and could void his contract if he went through with the procedure, sources said. The Lakers then arranged transportation to bring Ball home, sources said. This could have been a disastrous moment for the Lakers, with a core player potentially undergoing a procedure that could have blindsided the organization. But Johnson and Lakers General Manager Rob Pelinka communicated with those around Lonzo, working with his then-agent Harrison Gaines to squash the procedure and bring him back to Los Angeles, sources around the team with knowledge of the situation said. Gaines declined to comment when reached by phone.
One of the headaches and near-debacles of the final stretch of Magic Johnson’s tenure came in late February. In what could have been a catastrophe, the Lakers needed to prevent point guard Lonzo Ball from undergoing a potential unauthorized surgery on his left ankle that was planned by estranged former business partner Alan Foster and with LaVar Ball’s knowledge, multiple team and league sources told The Athletic.
Lonzo Ball traveled to Ohio in late February to potentially go through with a procedure on his injured ankle, pushed by Foster, a source familiar with the situation told The Athletic. The family had experience with the doctor who would perform the procedure as he had also operated on LiAngelo Ball, the source said.
The Lakers found out about Ball’s situation when Lonzo Ball called General Manager Rob Pelinka, and the organization informed him that they would not allow it and could void his contract if he went through with the procedure, sources said. The Lakers then arranged transportation to bring Ball home, sources said.
Tania Ganguli: Lonzo Ball did indeed nearly have ankle surgery with an unauthorized doctor. Lakers could have voided his contract if he did it. Ultimately he was convinced to return to Los Angeles and Jeanie Buss sent a plane to bring him back. It’s unclear if he still plans to have surgery.
He spoke publicly Tuesday for the first time since January and his recent shutdown for the remainder of the season. Ball is ready. “I’m very, very motivated,” Ball told The Athletic. “I want to be the best I can be. I’m looking forward to this summer. I don’t look at it as added pressure, because I haven’t had a full summer yet to dedicate to myself. I have to keep working on my craft. I’m just happy that I’m going to be healthy. “It’s been frustrating. This is the second year that this has happened. But I have to stay positive, stay motivated.”
Tania Ganguli: Can confirm Lonzo Ball has been officially shut down for the season. Ball suffered a grade 3 sprain in his left ankle, which includes a torn ligament, on January 19.
The Los Angeles Lakers say point guard Lonzo Ball will be re-evaluated in a week. Team physicians on Thursday determined Ball needs more "healing and recovery time" because of a bone bruise related to his Grade 3 ankle sprain suffered Jan. 19. The team says Ball will meet with team physicians in a week and his status will be updated again at that point.
Bill Oram: Lonzo Ball will be re-evaluated by team physicians tomorrow and an update will be given at that time. This news has been provided to you courtesy of the Lakers aces PR staff.
Mike Bresnahan: Lonzo Ball (sprained ankle) listed by Lakers as out for Wednesday’s game vs. New Orleans. Their next possible day of practice is Thursday. Ball is a little more than five weeks through original timetable of four to six weeks.
Mike Trudell: Further examination of Lonzo Ball’s grade 3 ankle sprain (occurred Jan. 19 at Houston) revealed a bone bruise, which isn’t uncommon for such sprains. Ball has yet to return to the practice court as he does daily rehab and the team will continue to provide updates as needed.
Lakers point guard Lonzo Ball has been dealing with a bone bruise in his sprained left ankle that the team believes could extend his recovery past six weeks, according to two people familiar with Ball’s condition. Ball severely sprained his ankle on Jan. 19 in the third quarter of the Lakers’ loss to the Houston Rockets.
Ball has been progressing well in his rehabilitation. He’s begun running on an underwater treadmill and is progressing toward being able to run on an Alter-G anti-gravity treadmill. He was on crutches for less than a week and was able to remove his walking boot shortly thereafter.
Harrison Faigen: Kyle Kuzma on one way the Lakers can improve on D: “I think getting Zo back into the mix is definitely one thing. He’s had a hell of a season defensively and we kind of feed off of him. He’s picking up 94 feet, getting stops all over the floor and has great defensive instincts.”
Bill Oram: Kyle Kuzma said Lonzo Ball is in good spirits after learning he will miss 4-6 weeks. “He thought it was going to be worse than the outcome was,” Kuzma said.
Lakers guard Lonzo Ball, who was injured in last night’s game at Houston, underwent an MRI which revealed a Grade 3 left ankle sprain. Ball is expected to miss 4-6 weeks and updates will be provided as appropriate.
While X-ray results were negative, this still figures to be a significant injury for Ball. Ingram missed seven games with a sprained ankle earlier this season and when Ball has been injured in the past, the Lakers have been extremely careful when bringing him back. He played 52 games as a rookie, in part because of a nagging knee injury that started off as day-to-day and ended up costing him 15 games.
Tania Ganguli: A bit of good news for the Lakers while they try to hang onto this one. Lonzo Ball's X-Rays were negative for fractures, per source.
That diagnosis was backed up when X-rays revealed no fractures, though it’s still unknown how many games Ball will have to miss. The Lakers will likely need Ball to undergo an MRI to reveal the extent of the damage to his ligaments.
“For Lonzo it’s learning on the go,” Walton said. “He hasn’t had an offseason yet to work on his game. So he’s learning while we’re playing during the season and he’s really done a nice job of turning a corner. We’ll see where we’re at, how long he’s out for, and hopefully get him up and running again and playing at the level he was playing at before he got hurt.”
Dave McMenamin: Luke Walton says JaVale McGee is improving but will be held out tonight. Lonzo Ball will play tonight vs LAC after suffering from a calf cramp last night.
Tania Ganguli: Lakers are calling Lonzo Ball day to day but he a little bit defiantly said “I’m playing Thursday.”
Bill Oram: X-rays were negative on Lonzo Ball. Lakers considering him day-to-day with sprained left ankle.
Harrison Faigen: Luke just said that Lonzo and Ingram are good to go for tonight.
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August 13, 2022 | 2:04 am EDT Update

Kevin Durant, James Harden back on good terms

ClutchPoints: “From what I’m told, the two former teammates are back on good terms now despite [James] Harden forcing his way out of Brooklyn.” @ramonashelburne on the Sixers’ reported interest in trading for Kevin Durant.

Grant Williams addresses Jaylen Brown trade rumors

After speaking with children during the Jr. Celtics camp, Grant Williams was asked how he felt about the trade rumors involving Brown. Williams responded by talking about the business side of the NBA while also praising Brown’s mindset and value as a player. “I feel like JB is mature in his mindset, and he knows that. I talk to him, texted him, reach out of as often as I can. It’s one of those things. It’s the league. It’s a business. It’s one of those things that you can’t be discouraged by because we love JB. It also shows how valuable he is.”
Obviously, Durant is one of the greatest players of all time. Williams explained that Brown having his name mentioned as the potential centerpiece in a deal for Durant just shows how great the Celtics star is. “It kind of shows how valuable he is. The fact that, top-10 player in the world, you’re the focal point. It’s one of those things, I remember, back in the day with Al Jefferson and KG [Kevin Garnett]. It’s one of those things where you’re like, ‘oh dang, Al Jefferson.’ It’s not even like a difference,” said Williams.
“I think he’s going to approach it even better. He’s going to take it with a competitive mindset, too. So, if it doesn’t work out, which, I don’t know what it is or not, I’m not involved in none of those processes,” stated Williams. “But I think that he’s going to come back with a chip on his shoulder, and I love that. Because I know how JB responds, and he’s going to be very, very, very, very secure because he’s secure of himself and he’s secure of what he’s going to be.”
Green then admitted that it’s usually him who takes the high road. Curry and Thompson don’t always clap back, so when they do, Dray knows that he has to take a step back in order to avoid an escalation: “That’s just not how we roll,” Green said. “So I usually do the majority of the talking most the time. It either leads to us having a conversation and discussing what I think and what they think and how we can figure it out. If it’s in a heated battle, a heat-of-the-moment situation and I’m like ‘Klay stop shooting the ball’ and he cuss and yell back, then we just keep it pushing and I run on and he run on. Or if I say something to Steph and he gets mad and snaps back every two blue moons then he says something back and I just run off and go about my day.”

Dwyane Wade on Heat Big 3: 'The hate was because of our skin color'

It was at this point where Wade decided to drop a shocking truth bomb about how the hatred for the Heat was racially motivated: “We knew that some of the hate was because of our skin color,” he claimed. “Because of being Black men and deciding to control the fate of our careers. … So, when we had the power, when we had the moment, we took it. But some of the hate came because we were three Black guys who decided and changed the way that the NBA probably would ever be because of that decision.”
Dwyane Wade recently made a guest appearance on JJ Redick’s The Old Man & The Three podcast, and it was an opportunity for the Heat icon to get brutally honest with his thoughts on why their Big 3 garnered so much hate. Wade was quick to point out that the way they teamed up to win a title wasn’t much different from how other iconic teams did it in the past (h/t ClutchPoints on Twitter): “If you think about it, no one gives backlash to any championships that Larry Bird won, that Magic Johnson won, that Michael Jordan won,” Wade said. “… You don’t win championships without playing with other guys that are great, first of all.”
Clutch Points: Brandon Jennings has some thoughts on the state of today’s NBA… 🤔 Jennings mentions that he feels Chris Paul and LeBron James were among those who contributed to turning the NBA into a “player’s league,” which has hurt the league. (via @Tuff__Crowd)