Spurs (24-3) beat the Suns (13-14) -- who were without Vince Carter,
Marcin Gortat, and Mickael Pietrus in the rotation -- 118-110. All
Spurs starters and Gary Neal off the bench scored in double figures, led
by Neal's 22 and Tim Duncan's 20-15 double-double. Leave it to Phoenix to shoot 53.5% and lose. San Antonio's riding a 9-game winning streak.
- Jason Richardson (9 pts) and Hedo Turkoglu (8 pts) were in the Magic (16-11) starting lineup and Gilbert Arenas (10 pts) suited up to play 26 min off the bench, but Orlando laid a stinker in Atlanta (18-12), losing 91-81. Dwight Howard had a 19-20 double-double, but the Magic were out-rebounded 51-38. Joe Johnson is back in the rotation and scored 17 to go with Al Horford's 24-11 and Josh Smith's 12-10 double-doubles. The ATL move a half-game in front Orlando in the division for the fourth seed in the conference. Orlando's lost 7 of their last 8.
Also: There's a hometown-stupid argument that Joakim Noah was on his way to an All-Star appearance since he's been shelved. Not only is Noah not the best East center not named Dwight Howard, but probably not the best center in the East from his chomapionship NCAA squad. Al Horford's the hands-down second-best center in the East and it isn't really close.
Speaking of centers: Orlando is reportedly shopping around Chris Duhon -- at a time when a wealth of teams are searching for backup point guards -- to pick up a backup center to replace Marcin Gortat.
- The Heat's (21-9) 13-game winning streak died to the Mavs (22-5) in Miami 98-96. At point, the Heat missed seven shot on one possession. The Big Three totaled below their averages for 60 pts and the team bricked 8-of-25 FTs while shooting only 40.4% from the field. Dirk Nowitzki shot well below his FG%going 8-for-21, but scored 26 going a perfect 10-for-10 at the line to go with Jason Terry's 19 pts off the bench, as the Mavs slightly out-rebounded Miami 48-46. Dallas has beat Miami is 14 straight regular season matches.
- The Staples Center Red Team (8-21) won their third straight beating the Darkopuppies (6-23) 113-90. Queue the Blake Griffin Dunk Porn:
- Carmelo Anthony will sign an extension before being traded to the Nets if Jersey can package a deal bringing more talent to the team. In other words: it's extremely difficult to believe 'Melo can become a Net before the end of the season and the Knicks' bargaining power inflates every day.
- The Hornets (16-12) continue to pay for playing like ass, losing their 11th of 16 since starting off 11-1 against the Pacers (13-14) 94-93.
Nawlins out-rebounded Indy 53-39 -- with 18 offensive -- and held the
Pacers to shooting just 42.5%. But Nawlins only managed to shoot 39.8%
as Chris Paul continues to be relatively shut down (15 pts on 4-for-11, 4
ast, 6 TOs).
Hornets Coach Monty Williams says the team has a case of 'head under butt' goin' on.
- Rip Hamilton "is upset with his role on the team and has become a distraction, team sources said." One source said, "He quit on us."
- Since starting the 2009-10 season 13-14, the Queens have only won 17 of their last 80.
- Ron Artest crashed the "Lovable Badass" art exhibit in Toronto over the weekend. The subject of the event: Ron-Ron.
Tags: al horford, alley oop, atlanta hawks, baron davis, blake griffin, carmelo anthony, chris duhon, chris paul, dallas mavericks, denver nuggets, detroit pistons, dwight howard, gilbert arenas, hedo turkoglu, indiana pacers, jason richardson, joakim noah, la clippers, miami heat, minnesota timberwolves, monty williams, nba, new jersey nets, new orleans hornets, orlando magic, phoenix suns, rip hamilton, ron artest, san antonio spurs, vince carter