Grizzlies rout Timberwolves 124-96 to tie series at 1 apiece
Ja Morant scored 23 points and handed out 10 assists as the Memphis Grizzlies looked much more like the team that posted the NBA’s second-best record, routing the Minnesota Timberwolves 124-96 to even up their first-round Western Conference series at 1 apiece.
Timberwolves stun Grizzlies, grab Game 1 with 130-117 win
Anthony Edwards scored 36 points in his postseason debut, and the seventh-seeded Minnesota Timberwolves stunned the No. 2 seed Memphis Grizzlies 130-117 to grab home-court advantage in the opener of their first-round Western Conference series.
NBCA says it has 'concern' about T-wolves' coaching change
Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Chris Finch reacts during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Milwaukee Bucks Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)CHICAGO – The leadership of the National Basketball Coaches Association spoke out Wednesday about its “concern and level of disappointment” with the way the Minnesota Timberwolves went about their coaching change earlier this week. The statement came from NBCA president Rick Carlisle of the Dallas Mavericks and NBCA executive director David Fogel. Ad“There were other candidates, minority candidates we considered at this time,” Timberwolves president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas said. “During this past offseason, we saw many NBA head coaching vacancies where teams led searches that were both diverse and transparent,” Fogel and Carlisle wrote in their statement.
Finch aims to 'breathe some confidence' back into Wolves
FILE - This Dec. 15, 2011, file photo shows Houston Rockets assistant coach Chris Finch during an NBA basketball media day in Houston. Chris Finch is the new coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves, the team announced Monday, Feb. 22, 2021, after dismissing Ryan Saunders the previous night. The team quickly hired Finch, who was in his first season as an assistant with the Toronto Raptors. Finch replaced Ryan Saunders, who was fired Sunday night after Minnesota lost at New York and fell to a league-worst 7-24. “I think we can breathe some confidence back into the roster,” Finch said, "and these guys can maybe find some joy.”___More AP NBA coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Spurs game at Detroit called off over virus-related concerns
(AP Photo/Darren Abate)Tuesday’s game between San Antonio Spurs and Detroit Pistons has been postponed, marking the second time this month that the NBA has called off a game because of coronavirus-related issues. The NBA does not announce the names of players who test positive; some have revealed positive tests on their own. Being ruled out because of the protocols can suggest any number of things, including a positive test, a suspected positive test or contact-tracing data showing that a player may have been exposed to a person with COVID-19. AdThe only other game called off this month for a virus-related issue was on Feb. 1, also involving the Pistons — Detroit's night game at Denver was postponed because of contact tracing issues involving the Pistons. Miami’s Tyler Herro missed a game last week because of a suspected positive test; subsequent tests showed he was fine and he was permitted to return to the Heat lineup after the one-game absence.
NBA says 1 player has tested positive for virus in past week
(AP Photo/Tony Dejak)NEW YORK – The NBA said one player tested positive for coronavirus in the past week, meaning only two have gotten that diagnosis in the last three weeks. The total for the season in the NBA is up to 92, but of those, 48 — or 52% — tested positive in November, before training camps officially opened. The NBA reported one positive test for the weekly period ending Jan. 26, and no positive tests for the period ending Feb. 3. Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns — who has missed 13 games — tested positive last month and his recovery is nearly complete. The NBA does not reveal which players test positive for COVID-19, but Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton said earlier this week that Bucks guard Jrue Holiday tested positive for the virus.
NBA: Zero new players tested positive for virus in past week
(AP Photo/Darren Abate)No additional NBA players have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last week, the league said Wednesday, after nearly two dozen games had to be called off in the past month because of virus-related issues. That continued a good two-week trend: After 27 players were positive in results released between Jan. 6 and Jan. 19, only one player has been positive since. We all need it, not just NBA players, coaches, families. The planet needs it.”The NBA has called off 23 games this season for virus issues, 22 since Jan. 10. But it’s important to have weeks like this, because it gives everybody hope.”___More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Wizards return to court, Grizzlies see 6th game postponed
Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal (3) shoots against Phoenix Suns forward Jae Crowder (99) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Jan. 11, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)The Washington Wizards are finally back. The Grizzlies won’t play until at least Saturday, after the NBA called off yet another game -- the 20th since Jan. 10 and the 21st postponement this season. Those were called off late last week and now, the Grizzlies’ home game against Chicago that was scheduled for Wednesday is off as well. In all, 23 teams have seen at least one game called off so far this season.
Grizzlies-Blazers called off; NBA stresses new protocols
Memphis Grizzlies Taylor Jenkins holds the play board during a timeout in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2021, in Minneapolis. By NBA rule, teams must have eight eligible players for games; the Grizzlies would not meet that threshold because of “ongoing contact tracing,” the league said. Players, the NBA reminded Wednesday, must limit their interactions to elbow bumps and fist bumps. Portland is the 20th NBA team to have at least one game called off in the last two weeks. Memphis had its game at Minnesota last Friday called off after Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns revealed that he tested positive for COVID-19.
NBA giving Wizards more time to prepare after virus layoff
The earliest Washington will play now is Sunday in San Antonio — 13 days after the Wizards' most recent game. The Wizards didn't expect to have more than eight available on Friday because of a combination of the virus and injuries. Players, the NBA reminded Wednesday, may elbow-bump and fist-bump, but hugs and handshakes are not permitted. Memphis had its game at Minnesota last Friday called off after Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns revealed that he tested positive for COVID-19. Towns and Ricky Rubio were among the Timberwolves still sidelined by the league's virus protocols Wednesday for a game against Orlando.
76ers-Thunder called off as virus concerns still trouble NBA
(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)Another NBA game was called off Sunday because of coronavirus concerns, and the Memphis Grizzlies said center Jonas Valanciunas will not play Monday because of the league’s health and safety protocols. The 76ers played in Memphis on Saturday night, losing 106-104 in a game where Valanciunas played 20 minutes. He was pulled at halftime of Memphis’ game against Brooklyn on Jan. 8 because of some sort of virus-related issue, but was back on the court for the Grizzlies’ next game Jan. 11 against Cleveland. Minnesota, which had a game Friday called off after Karl-Anthony Towns revealed he tested positive, is scheduled to play Monday in Atlanta. Cleveland’s game in Washington on Sunday also was called off, as was the planned rematch between the clubs on Monday.
More NBA games off, as league continues struggles with virus
(AP Photo/Jeffrey McWhorter)Another three NBA games were postponed Friday, including one in Minnesota only a couple hours before game time, as the league's struggle with increasing coronavirus numbers continued. The Timberwolves' game with the Memphis Grizzlies was called off, as were what would have been Wizards' home games Sunday and Monday against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Washington has seen four of its games pushed back, Boston and Phoenix have had three postponements. The NBA said earlier this week that 16 players tested positive in recent days, which was more than the NBA had seen in the last five weeks combined. The NBA gave Orlando coach Steve Clifford a call recently, telling him he had to do a better job of keeping his mask on during games.
The wait is over: Delayed NBA draft finally comes Wednesday
1 overall pick in the NBA draft on Nov. 18, 2020. After multiple delays, the NBA draft finally arrives Wednesday. The draft is usually held in June in New York, where Adam Silver announces the first-round picks. It's not the draft night they wanted, but the excitement of becoming a pro player won't diminish. But at the same time, this extra time, it’s only helping me,” said forward Obi Toppin, the national college player of the year from Dayton.
Butler's big night helps Heat cut Lakers' Finals lead to 2-1
With a triple-double, he joined NBA Finals lore — and the short-handed Miami Heat might have made this title matchup a series after all. Miami's starters outscored the Lakers' starting five 89-51, and the Heat held the Lakers to a 14-for-42 night from 3-point land. It’s going to be a tough game, Game 4," Herro said. ... Nick Aquilino, the son of Heat neuromuscular therapist Vinny Aquilino, performed the anthem -- a recording from a Heat game with fans in Miami. BUTLER’S TRIPLE-DOUBLEButler became the 21st player to have a triple-double in the NBA Finals — and four of the 21 were part of Sunday’s game.