Nikola Jokic questionable, Bam Adebayo questionable and more updates on Kyle Lowry and Tyrese Maxey (April 6, 2023)

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NBA MVP candidate Nikola Jokic is questionable for the Denver Nuggets’ matchup against the Phoenix Suns on Thursday night. “The Joker” returned from a three-game absence due to right calf tightness on Tuesday versus the Houston Rockets.

Jokic played just 25 minutes and finished with 14 points, 10 rebounds, four assists, two steals and three blocks. A few basketball analysts have wondered if his injury is more serious than originally thought after his rather subpar performance against the lowly Rockets.

Nikola Jokic (calf) listed questionable for Thursday.

Nikola Jokic (calf) listed questionable for Thursday.

Nikola Jokic’s poor showing could not have come at a more unfortunate time as Joel Embiid put up a 52-point explosion against the Boston Celtics. “The Process,” after that game, has become the favorite to dethrone the Serbian for the coveted NBA MVP award.

The Denver Nuggets, however, have clinched the best record in the Western Conference after the Memphis Grizzlies lost to the New Orleans Pelicans. Nuggets coach Mike Malone might choose to shut Jokic down until the playoffs start.

Meanwhile, two-time NBA All-Star Bam Adebayo of the Miami Heat is also questionable for Thursday night’s matchup against the Philadelphia 76ers. Adebayo is in danger of missing his second game in Miami’s last three playing dates.

Adebayo sat out in the Heat’s 129-122 loss to the Dallas Mavericks on April 1 and then returned Tuesday night to face the Detroit Pistons. His availability is iffy as he is reportedly dealing with a left quadricep tendon strain.

Bam Adebayo (quad) listed questionable for Thursday.

Bam Adebayo (quad) listed questionable for Thursday.

The Miami Heat (42-27) are desperately trying to chase the Brooklyn Nets (44-36) for the last guaranteed playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Adebayo’s absence, if he’s unavailable, will be greatly felt as the Heat will have to contend with leading NBA MVP candidate Joel Embiid.

Cody Zeller is expected to be re-inserted into the starting lineup if Bam Adebayo is unable to play.

Kyle Lowry: Left knee soreness; Injured since: January 20, 2023

Kyle Lowry has been dealing with nagging knee soreness for nearly two months already. It’s the reason why he’s been a staple in the Miami Heat’s injury report.

He has been ruled questionable yet again due to the same issue on Thursday night against the Philadelphia 76ers.

Miami’s game against Philly will be the first night of a back-to-back set, which means he will likely sit out in one of these games. The Heat will visit the Washington Wizards on Friday.

Kyle Lowry (knee) listed questionable for Thursday.

Kyle Lowry (knee) listed questionable for Thursday.

Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra has changed the 2019 NBA champ’s role in the team. He has become a big part of the team’s bench for several weeks already. Lowry continues to provide excellent leadership and playmaking whenever he’s available.

Max Strus and Gabe Vincent are expected to get more minutes if the former NBA All-Star is unavailable.


Tyrese Maxey: Neck stiffness; injured since: April 4, 2023

Tyrese Maxey is one of the NBA’s emerging talents. He didn’t perform that way on Tuesday against the Boston Celtics. Philly’s young point guard played 40 minutes but scored just five points, his lowest output this season.

The Philadelphia 76ers have ruled him questionable tonight due to neck stiffness against the Miami Heat. He might have played through it versus the Celtics, which led to his surprisingly poor showing.

Tyrese Maxey (neck) listed questionable for Thursday.

Tyrese Maxey (neck) listed questionable for Thursday.

The 76ers will be playing the first game of a back-to-back set against the Heat. If he’s not available tonight, he could be back on the roster for Friday night in Atlanta.

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Isiah Thomas urges Michael Jordan to publicly apologize for his comments – “You got on national television and you called me an a**hole”

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NBA legend Isiah Thomas has called on Michael Jordan to apologize for his comments.

During Netflix’s “The Last Dance” documentary which aired in 2020, Jordan spoke about a range of former rivals. Although the documentary mainly focused on Michael Jordan and the 1997-98 Chicago Bulls, the series would not have been possible without the various antagonists that challenged Jordan throughout his career. Thomas and the Detroit Pistons, also known as the “Bad Boys,” were one of Jordan’s most formidable foes as he tried to win his first championship.

Jordan’s dislike for Thomas was evident in the documentary when he referred to him as an “a**hole.” On the “Showtime Basketball” show recently, Isiah Thomas said that the documentary did not reveal the truth:

“I just want some people to be honest. I got no problem sitting down, talking with anybody. I live with love, peace, truth, honesty, courage, I stand on my square. I’m upright. I’d sit in any chair, and I’d talk to anybody. But some people, they ain’t telling the truth.

“You got on national television and you called me an a**hole, and then you said you hated me. You said that on national television. Now, if you didn’t mean it, get on national television and apologize for it. Now, if you meant it, let it ride as it is.”

Zeke keeps it real when his relationship with MJ is brought up.

Part 1 with @IsiahThomas drops Thursday on the ShoBasketball Youtube.

Zeke keeps it real when his relationship with MJ is brought up.Part 1 with @IsiahThomas drops Thursday on the ShoBasketball Youtube.

Isiah Thomas was one of Michael Jordan’s biggest rivals

Isiah Thomas had an intense rivalry with the Chicago Bulls legend as the Detroit Pistons’ leader. However, Thomas said that he had a good relationship with Jordan when he was establishing himself in Chicago, Thomas’ hometown.

Thomas also said that his family took care of Jordan, and that his sister and Jordan’s brother were friends. Thomas even highlighted that his little nephew lived with Michael Jordan. Hence, the former Pistons superstar felt offended. It is clear that the two once shared a respectful relationship despite being rivals on the court.

Fun fact: Isiah Thomas was Michael Jordan’s coach in his last All-Star Game

I have never seen two faker smiles in my life 😂😂

Fun fact: Isiah Thomas was Michael Jordan’s coach in his last All-Star GameI have never seen two faker smiles in my life 😂

The documentary also suggested that Thomas and the Pistons always tried to “hit Jordan out of games.” Although Thomas acknowledged that the team was ultra-physical with Jordan, he emphasized that he never hit anyone.

It is clear that the 61-year old still feels hard done by due to Jordan’s comments and wants to bury the hatchet. It will be interesting to see if and whether Michael Jordan ends up responding to his plea.

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Is LeBron James playing tonight against Bulls? Latest injury update on Lakers’ star ahead of matchup (March 26, 2023)

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LeBron James hasn’t played since the LA Lakers’ 111-108 thrilling comeback win over the Dallas Mavericks on Feb. 26. James told his teammates in that game that he heard a “pop” in his right foot but still played crucial minutes in the fourth quarter.

Three days ago, Lakers coach Darvin Ham told the media that “King James” was undergoing a “gradual movement program.” He has also been cleared to do on-court activities.

Shams Charania of The Athletic updated basketball fans with this tweet yesterday:

“The Lakers have upgraded LeBron James to doubtful vs. Bulls on Sunday. James appears closer to a return.”

The Lakers have upgraded LeBron James to doubtful vs. Bulls on Sunday. James appears closer to a return.

The Lakers have upgraded LeBron James to doubtful vs. Bulls on Sunday. James appears closer to a return.

When rumors started sprouting about his potential return, James had this to say to those reports:

“There wasn’t an evaluation today and there hasn’t been any target date for my return. I’m just working around the clock, every day(3X a day) to give myself to best chance of coming back to full strength whenever that is. God bless y’all sources. I speak for myself!”

There wasn’t an evaluation today and there hasn’t been any target date for my return. I’m just working around the clock, every day(3X a day) to give myself to best chance of coming back full strength whenever that is. God bless y’all sources. 🤦🏾‍♂️ I speak for myself!

There wasn’t an evaluation today and there hasn’t been any target date for my return. I’m just working around the clock, every day(3X a day) to give myself to best chance of coming back full strength whenever that is. God bless y’all sources. 🤦🏾‍♂️ I speak for myself!

The LA Lakers are in a dogfight for at least a play-in berth. They are now eighth in the Western Conference standings with a 37-37 record. LA’s win against the OKC Thunder last Friday gave them a .500 record for the first time since they started 0-0.

Despite the enormous pressure to make the postseason, the LA Lakers will not allow James to play unless he’s fully healthy.


What is LeBron James’ status tonight against the Chicago Bulls?

The LA Lakers have upgraded LeBron James to doubtful for their matchup tonight against the Chicago Bulls. This is the biggest and most significant update coming from his team since he injured his foot in Dallas last month.

For the Lakers to declare that he’s doubtful instead of automatically ruling him out likely means he’s closer than ever to returning.

James’ team will host the Chicago Bulls, marking their first meeting with former teammate Patrick Beverley. If James’ status isn’t changed to available tonight, he could return during LA’s five-game road trip.

LeBron James (foot) doubtful for Sunday.

LeBron James (foot) doubtful for Sunday.

After tonight, the Lakers will take on the Bulls in a rematch, the Minnesota Timberwolves, Houston Rockets, Utah Jazz and the LA Clippers.

The LA Lakers will have a two-day break after squaring off against the Bulls tonight. LeBron James could suit up for the purple and gold team on Wednesday in Chicago if he’s to resume cheerleading duties tonight.


What is LeBron James’ impact on the LA Lakers?

LeBron James may be in his 20th season, but he’s been beating players years his junior when he’s available. Even if Anthony Davis plays like an MVP, the Lakers’ best chances of winning the title could be decided by James’ presence.

The Lakers have retooled their lineup leading to and before the trade deadline. They’re more balanced, deeper and stronger with Rob Pelinka’s roster changes. However, LA’s ceiling and floor will be drastically different if the four-time NBA MVP is in the lineup.

If the NBA’s all-time leading scorer is fit enough to play, some analysts assert that he and Davis could carry the team to the finals.

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Is Kevin Durant playing tonight against Kings? Latest injury update on Suns’ star ahead of matchup (24th March 2023)

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The reeling Phoenix Suns could certainly use Kevin Durant when they take on the Sacramento Kings at the Golden 1 Center. Durant hasn’t played since Mar. 5 in the Suns’ 130-126 win over the Dallas Mavericks.

On Mar. 9, just when KD was about to make his home debut in Phoenix, he rolled his left ankle and injured it during warmups. KD got up and finished his routine, but was declared out by the Suns for precautionary measures against his old team, the OKC Thunder.

Here’s video of Kevin Durant slipping on the floor pregame.

He stayed down for a few seconds but then got up and finished his on-court work.

Here’s video of Kevin Durant slipping on the floor pregame.He stayed down for a few seconds but then got up and finished his on-court work.

After the game, it was announced that Kevin Durant will, unfortunately, be sidelined again until the end of this month. The Phoenix Suns informed the media that he will be re-evaluated in three weeks.

If the former NBA MVP recovers as expected, he could be available on Apr. 2 against, coincidentally, the OKC Thunder.

Phoenix is unbeaten in the three games that Durant played. He averaged 26.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 3.7 assists during that stretch. KD also hit a ridiculous 69.0% of his shots, including a blistering 53.8% from behind the arc.

The Phoenix Suns are 2-5 in their last seven games without Durant. Unfortunately, for the Suns, he’s only going to be a cheerleader for them tonight.


What is Kevin Durant’s status against the Sacramento Kings?

Kevin Durant has officially been ruled out for the Phoenix Suns’ matchup against the Sacramento Kings. Durant hasn’t played in the Suns’ last seven games due to a left ankle sprain, which he suffered during pregame warmups.

KD was working on his routine right before the tip-off against the OKC Thunder when he rolled and injured his left ankle. It didn’t look like he was going to be sidelined as he finished his workout as if he was not injured.

Kevin Durant (ankle) and Deandre Ayton (hip) aren’t in Sacramento as #Suns end 3-game road trip Friday against #Kings.

Both ruled out for 4th and final meeting between Phoenix and Sacramento.

Suns have 2-1 series lead. They’re 4th in West.

Kings 3rd. Up five games on Phoenix.

Kevin Durant (ankle) and Deandre Ayton (hip) aren’t in Sacramento as #Suns end 3-game road trip Friday against #Kings.Both ruled out for 4th and final meeting between Phoenix and Sacramento.Suns have 2-1 series lead. They’re 4th in West.Kings 3rd. Up five games on Phoenix.

A day after the game, the Phoenix Suns broke the news to the media that the two-time NBA champ will need three weeks to recover. Durant will be re-evaluated on Mar. 30.

If things go as planned, he could be back in the Suns’ last few remaining regular-season games.


What is Kevin Durant’s impact on the Phoenix Suns?

Las Vegas oddsmakers gave the Phoenix Suns a +1800 chance of winning the 2023 NBA championship. After acquiring Kevin Durant from the Brooklyn Nets, their odds improved to +425. He can simply change the ceiling of a team when he’s available.

The Suns were energized when Durant was on the floor. Devin Booker was awarded several open looks because of KD’s presence. Chris Paul’s job became a little easier with another legitimate scoring maestro at his disposal.

Phoenix did not lose a game when the “Slim Reaper” was on the floor.

Kevin Durant makes the Phoenix Suns a bonafide championship contender. Without him, they may even drop into the play-in tournament.

The Suns (38-34), who are in fourth place, are only just 3.0 games ahead of the Utah Jazz (35-37) for the 11th spot. Phoenix is on a two-game losing streak. If they can’t snap out of their lethargy, they could end up having to fight for their playoff aspirations via the play-in tournament.

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What size shoe does Shaquille O’Neal wear?

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Shaquille O’Neal is one of the greatest centers in NBA history.

In 19 seasons, O’Neal won four NBA titles, incuding three with Kobe Bryant with the LA Lakers, and was the Finals MVP three times. Standing at 7-foot-1, the Hall of Famer was the perfect combination of power and athleticism.

Given his impending size, one would expect that O’Neal has a large shoe size as well. Well, O’Neal has a shoe size of 20, but he wears a size 22. Speaking to FN, O’Neal said:

“My shoe size is 20, but I like to wear a 22 because when I was young we couldn’t afford proper shoes, so I had to wear my shoes tight. (Now) I always get my shoes too big to make sure I have room.”

Quick tip, don’t ever say “act your age, not your shoe size” to Shaquille O’Neal, because he wears size 22 shoes and like that’s old enough to drink and smoke and serve in the Armed Forces.

Quick tip, don’t ever say “act your age, not your shoe size” to Shaquille O’Neal, because he wears size 22 shoes and like that’s old enough to drink and smoke and serve in the Armed Forces.

Standing at 7-1, there’s little doubt that O’Neal doesn’t like to bend down as well. Sure enough, O’Neal revealed in the same interview that he preferred slip-ons to sneakers with laces:

“I’d rather do that than have to bend down and tie my shoe. My workout consists of just cardio and lifting weights. No more running, no more jumping. I’m more of a slip-on guy.”

Shaquille O’Neal undergoes hip surgery

On Monday, Shaquille O’Neal shared a photo of himself on a hospital bed. His Twitter post referenced Ernie Johnson and Candace Parker, and it has since been confirmed that he will not be part of upcoming episodes of “Inside the NBA.”

Regardless, fans will be happy to know that Shaq has not involvede in any accident, and the LA Lakers legend instead underwent successful hip surgery.

Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal played together for the LA Lakers from 1996 to 2004, during which time they won three consecutive NBA championships (2000-2002). The two players had contrasting styles. Bryant was a scoring machine known for his relentless work ethic and competitiveness, while O’Neal was a dominant force in the paint, using his size and strength to overpower opponents.

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“‘Damn I gotta go play against Bron tonight’”

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The GOAT debate between Michael Jordan and LeBron James has only gotten louder after “King James” became the NBA’s all-time leading scorer. Some fans who were straddling the fence regarding the issue have converted to join James’ legion of fans following the historical feat.

Mario Chalmers, who played with James in Miami for four years, has a different take on the greatest player ever conversation. Here’s what he had to say about the difference between his former teammate and MJ:

“Nobody fears Bron [James]. Nobody’s like, ‘Damn, I gotta go play against Bron tonight.’ Nobody said that. I don’t know why? Because I seen people be scared when they actually line up to him. But they’re not scared thinking about that matchup. You hear anybody from that era talk about going against Jordan, there’s a fear.”

“So when you have people that fear a player, then that’s telling you something different already. Jordan is just that guy. Everything was, ‘I wanna be like Mike.’”

Mario Chalmers played a crucial role as part of the Miami Heat team that went to four straight championships and won back-to-back NBA titles. He played with LeBron James when the 19x All-Star was at the peak of his physical prowess.

James and Dwyane Wade took the former Kansas Jayhawks superstar under their wings. During Miami’s dominant run, Chalmers often took the brunt of James and Wade’s tutelage and criticism. Chalmers witnessed the four-time MVP when he was at his most dominating physically.

Chalmer’s claim will at the very least surprise hordes of fans of the injured current LA Lakers superstar. The erstwhile Miami Heat guard apparently believes the Michael Jordan “fear factor” was something not even James could replicate at the peak of his powers.


Shaquille O’Neal has the same claim as Mario Chalmers that nobody is scared of LeBron James

Mario Chalmers wasn’t the only former teammate of LeBron James who thought the self-proclaimed greatest wasn’t as feared as Michael Jordan. Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal expressed the same opinion as Chalmers.

Here’s Shaq on how NBA players have looked at “King James:”

“LeBron is my guy, but nobody was ever scared of LeBron. So, if you’re not scared of a guy, you just have much more confidence. That’s a dangerous guy to play with. They respect him, but they don’t fear him ’cause I can tell, I watched him playing against them, they not scared.”

youtube-cover

Over the past few years, it’s not James that opposing players have an appropriate fear for. Shaq added:

“They fear Giannis now. They fear Giannis cause they can see in his face when he coming down the damn lane full court. They can see, yo, this guy not playing.”

The greatest of all-time debate involving LeBron James and Michael Jordan will never be fully resolved. Fans will have different perspectives regarding their take on who should be considered to be the best to ever play the game.


You may also like to read: What did Michael Jordan say on LeBron James breaking all-time scoring record?

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Is Steph Curry playing tonight against the LA Lakers? March 5th, 2023

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Steph Curry is set to return tonight for the Golden State Warriors against the LA Lakers. The two-time NBA MVP last played on February 4 in a win against the Dallas Mavericks. He left the game late in the third quarter after injuring his leg.

Curry played just 26 minutes but still had a game-high 21 points to go with six rebounds and seven assists. He has since missed the defending NBA champs’ last 11 games. Despite his absence, the Warriors have managed to stay afloat by finishing 7-4 during the said stretch.

After the All-Star weekend, “Chef Curry” and the Warriors reportedly set March 5 as his return date, barring any setbacks. Fortunately, he has progressed in his rehab as scheduled and expected. Curry is slated to don the Warriors jersey versus the LA Lakers.


What is Steph Curry’s status tonight against the LA Lakers?

"Chef Curry" is probable tonight versus the LA Lakers.
“Chef Curry” is probable tonight versus the LA Lakers.

Steph Curry has been officially ruled probable when they visit Crypto.com Arena to take on the LA Lakers. Tonight will be their fourth meeting this season with the team from Hollywood holding a 2-1 edge. The Lakers will be playing without injured superstar LeBron James, so Golden State could end up tying their head-to-head matchup.

Big news for the Warriors: Both Steph Curry and Andre Iguodala are probable tomorrow against the Lakers. Appears as if they are getting both back.

Big news for the Warriors: Both Steph Curry and Andre Iguodala are probable tomorrow against the Lakers. Appears as if they are getting both back.

Curry has played just 38 out of the Golden State Warriors’ 64 games due to a variety of injuries. He also had a shoulder injury last December 14, which sidelined him for 13 games. The NBA’s all-time three-point king played 10 games after that injury before landing on the injury report after the aforementioned Dallas Mavericks game.


What is Steph Curry’s impact on the Golden State Warriors?

Curry has been playing like an MVP this season until injuries slowed him down.Curry has been playing like an MVP this season until injuries slowed him down.
Curry has been playing like an MVP this season until injuries slowed him down.

Steph Curry was the lone bright spot in the Golden State Warriors’ early season struggles, particularly on the road. The reigning NBA Finals MVP hasn’t had a hangover since destroying the Boston Celtics in last year’s championship series.

He was playing at an MVP level before injuries started to slow him down. Without him or with him being compromised, the Warriors are a different team.

Heading into tonight’s matchup against the LA Lakers, the Bay Area team have strung together five straight wins. As good and as competitive as they have been without Curry’s latest injury, they are just going anywhere without the NBA’s deadliest shooter ever.

Steve Kerr’s unit has an offensive rating of 116.1 when Steph Curry is on the floor this season. It slides a little to 115.4 without him. The difference looks miniscule, especially since the Golden State Warriors’ recent surge in form.

For everyone in the NBA, though, the Warriors’ title-repeat bid hinges on the health of the diminutive guard from Davidson. Golden State may still be competitive without him, but they can kiss their chances of a back-to-back run minus him.

You might also like to read: “He’s a once-in-a-lifetime basketball player” – LeBron James acknowledges Steph Curry’s greatness, as the 2 legends continue to make and break more records

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“That guy has no clue of how basketball was played in the 80s”

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LA Lakers legend Michael Cooper is the latest to call out JJ Redick’s comments about physicality during Larry Bird and Steph Curry’s era. The ESPN analyst argued that Bird and Curry basically have to go through the same type of defensive tactics to score despite playing eras apart.

On his podcast, “Showtime with Coop,” the five-time NBA champ ripped Redick:

“That guy has no clue of how basketball was played in the 80s and I guarantee you this JJ Redick. If you had played in the 80s… I would’ve locked your a— up. You wouldn’t have gotten a shot off, you wouldn’t have gotten nothing off.“

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JJ Redick’s oversimplification of the physicality between the ’80s and today’s NBA riled up two former greats of the game. The league had different rules back then. Players had more leeway to try and contain opponents.

A hard foul during Larry Bird’s era would have easily merited an ejection, if not a suspension, in today’s NBA. There was more holding, grabbing and illegal screen-settings back then. Since early the 2000s, the league has been implementing measures to protect players, especially those playing offense.

Michael Cooper, the 1986-87 Defensive Player of the Year winner, had numerous battles with the Boston Celtics great in the ’80s. In most of their legendary championship games, it was “Coop” who had the enviable task of locking down one of the NBA’s greatest players.

Cooper knew what it took to try and contain Bird. However, he, the LA Lakers and most of the NBA couldn’t do much against “Larry Legend” in his peak. Here’s what he had to say about Reddick’s comparison between the Hall of Famer and Curry:

“JJ Redick, this kid here who was a journeyman, he was a poor man’s Danny Ainge. In today’s NBA, I don’t what game he’s looking at; you can’t touch a guy. Anytime you touch anybody, a 3-point shooter, come close to them when they’re landing, it’s a foul.

“Larry Bird was one of the greatest shooters that ever played the game. Fu*k percentages, it ain’t about that. It’s about hitting big shots. That guy, man.”


Like Michael Cooper, Dominique Wilkins didn’t hold back on JJ Redick’s analysis

Michael Cooper and Dominique Wilkins couldn't stomach JJ Redick's "disrespect" of Larry Bird. [photo: NBA.com]
Michael Cooper and Dominique Wilkins couldn’t stomach JJ Redick’s “disrespect” of Larry Bird. [photo: NBA.com]

Dominique Wilkins, who was the Atlanta Hawks’ best player in Larry Bird’s best years, played in the same conference as the Boston Celtics great. And like Michael Cooper, he also couldn’t hold back his passionate rebuttal of JJ Redick’s analysis.

Here’s Wilkins also lashing out at JJ Redick for his hot take on SiriusXM NBA:

“First of all, Redick don’t know what the hell he’s talking about. I’m like, what basketball was he watching? To say something as idiotic as that is ridiculous.

“The physicality that was part of the league. … I just don’t like the disrespect. To say that about Larry Bird — less physically — is (Redick) stupid? It’s just a stupid comment to make.”

After all the backlash, Redick refused to back down from his comments. In his podcast “The Old Man and the Three,” he responded to Michael Cooper and Dominique Wilkins:

“I didn’t disrespect Larry Bird. I questioned the narrative around physicality. I said for every montage video you can show me of Larry Bird being in a headlock underneath the basket, I can show you a montage video of him shooting open jumpers. Of him coming off pin-downs.

“Yeah, I can show Steph the same way. I can show Steph getting held, I can show Larry getting held. It’s all basketball.”

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When does Kevin Durant come back from injury? Phoenix Suns officially reveal “expected” return date

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After Kevin Durant was traded at the deadline on Feb. 9, many have waited patiently for him to make his Phoenix Suns’ debut. The former MVP has been sidelined since early January due to an MCL injury.

Amid recent developments, it appears the wait is over. The Phoenix Suns announced on Twitter that KD is expected to suit up against the Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday.

Kevin Durant is expected to make his Phoenix Suns debut tomorrow in Charlotte.

Kevin Durant is expected to make his Phoenix Suns debut tomorrow in Charlotte.

Before getting injured, Kevin Durant was in the midst of an MVP-level season for the Brooklyn Nets. In 39 games, he is averaging 29.7 points, 6.7 rebounds and 5.3 assists.

At long last, the NBA world will finally get its first glimpse of Durant alongside Chris Paul, Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton.

Kevin Durant has limited time to make it work with Phoenix Suns

When the Phoenix Suns traded away a haul of assets to bring in KD, expectations instantly skyrocketed. Upon adding the two-time Finals MVP, they are now at the top of the list of championship contenders.

Phoenix (33-29) might have all the pieces to make an NBA Finals run, but one thing they are lacking is time. Including his debut against the Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday, Durant and the Suns have just 20 games to gel before the postseason.

On top of making things mesh with their new core, the Suns also have little margin for error in the standings. The Western Conference standings have been air-tight all season as multiple teams want to make a deep playoff push.

Right now, the Suns sit in fourth place and are three games behind the Sacramento Kings (35-25) for third. That being said, only three games separate the Phoenix and the 11th-place Portland Trail Blazers (29-31). If they don’t come out of the gates hot, it could completely change their path to the NBA Finals.

One thing they have going for them is that KD has proven to be the best plug-and-play player in history. His skill set allows him to easily fit into any system no matter what kind of talent is around him. This should allow Phoenix to have minimal growing pains as the new star enters the fold.

Phoenix also has one of the best floor generals in the game to fall back on. Chris Paul is still one of the top facilitators in the league and will make sure everyone gets the proper touches.

With Kevin Durant’s debut in place now, all the league can do is wait to see if it has another superteam on its hands.

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Giannis Antetokounmpo mistakenly picks Ja Morant while drafting reserves, hilarity ensues at 2023 NBA All-Star Game

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Giannis Antetokounmpo mistakenly picked Ja Morant with his third pick of the NBA All-Star reserves draft. Antetokounmpo forgot that Morant was named as a replacement starter for Steph Curry.

After picking Damian Lillard and Jrue Holiday in the first two rounds, Antetokounmpo wanted another guard and selected Morant. As the Memphis Grizzlies superstar was not eligible, though, “The Greek Freak” decided to pick Shai Gilgeous-Alexander of the OKC Thunder.

Fans in attendance cheered Antetokounmpo’s selection, but the players laughed at the error. The two-time MVP came prepared with a cheat sheet and possible scouting report but still made a mistake.

Here’s the video of Antetokounmpo’s blunder:

Giannis tried to take Ja with his reserve pick. 😂😂😂

Giannis tried to take Ja with his reserve pick. 😂😂

The rest of Team Giannis Antetokounmpo included DeMar DeRozan, Pascal Siakam, Bam Adebayo and Domantas Sabonis. It looks like a balanced team for the Milwaukee Bucks superstar, but can it topple LeBron James’ team?

“The King” started off his reserves draft with Anthony Edwards of the Minnesota Timberwolves. He then selected Jaylen Brown, Paul George, Tyrese Haliburton, Julius Randle, De’Aaron Fox and ended with Jaren Jackson Jr.

After the reserves were chosen, James started off the starters draft. He picked Joel Embiid first, while Antetokounmpo went with Jayson Tatum. LA Lakers fans surely loved James’ second pick, Kyrie Irving.

Giannis Antetokounmpo followed that up by getting Ja Morant, Donovan Mitchell and Lauri Markkanen. Team James, meanwhile. added Luka Doncic and Nikola Jokic to complete his team.

LeBron James is looking to stay undefeated in this format of the All-Star Game. He’s currently 4-0, while Antetokounmpo is 0-2 as a team captain. He lost to Team LeBron in back-to-back years, in 2019 and 2010. It should also be noted that Antetokounmpo is playing with a sprained right wrist.

Also Read: Who is Guillermo Rodriguez from Jimmy Kimmel Live? Exploring his hilarious run-ins with LeBron James and appearance at All-Star Celebrity Game


Giannis Antetokounmpo scores first basket of All-Star Game, gets subbed off immediately

Giannis Antetokounmpo at the 2023 NBA All Star - Ruffles Celebrity GameGiannis Antetokounmpo at the 2023 NBA All Star - Ruffles Celebrity Game
Giannis Antetokounmpo at the 2023 NBA All Star – Ruffles Celebrity Game

Giannis Antetokounmpo started off the 2023 NBA All-Star Game with an easy slam. However, he immediately committed a foul and was subbed off. “The Greek Freak” had injured his right hand in the Milwaukee Bucks’ final game before the All-Star break.

Antetokounmpo was diagnosed with a sprained right wrist. He was ruled out off the Skills Challenge on All-Star Saturday and was replaced by teammate Jrue Holiday. It seems like the Bucks and Antetokounmpo are being cautious considering that the second half of the season is more important than an exhibition game.

Giannis is done for the night after scoring first 😅😅

Giannis is done for the night after scoring first 😅 https://t.co/mhFfiBzGU3

Watch: LeBron James hilariously calls Luka Doncic as Hookah Doncic while drafting him for his team at 2023 NBA All-Star Game

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