It wasn’t the greatest night in NBA history, especially for the Spurs and Nuggets. In a scene reminiscent of a Curb Your Enthusiasm episode, Stephen Jackson got hurt tripping over a civilian on the court, and New York mayor Michael Bloomberg was involved. Our night owl James Park has the details (with a video clip) in the SH Blog.
Friday can only get better. We have a $300 Freeroll just for you at DraftStreet — see my Diary for more info — and one lucky reader will win $100 cash. There are 11 NBA games, including a much-anticipated Battle of L.A., and it’s our job to give you the Fantasy Spin on all of them.
January 3 Games
MIN @ DEN: As Wolves fan, I’m pleasantly surprised that they bounced back 24 hours after an embarrassing loss, and relieved that Kevin Love (12 PTS, 17 REB in just 23:36) didn’t break his hand again. It’s ‘only’ a sprained finger, so depending on his pain threshold, Love could return on Saturday. J.J. Barea (17 PTS, 5 AST, 4 REB) took over with 12 fourth-quarter points. For Denver, Ty Lawson (16 PTS, 2 BLK in 22:41) came off the bench to protect his tender Achilles, while Andre Miller (11 PTS, 10 AST) got another start. Kosta Koufos (16 PTS, 7 REB, 4 STL, 2 BLK) had a juicy fantasy line in defeat.
SAS @ NYK: That was disappointing on so many levels. Obviously tired, the Spurs were never in the game, and that fluke injury to Jaxx was bizarre. It’s an ankle sprain, he didn’t return and we don’t know yet if he’ll play against Philly on Saturday. Carmelo Anthony (23 PTS, 8 REB, 3 AST) and J.R. Smith (20 PTS, 5 REB, 3 AST) led the way as usual; Tyson Chandler (10 PTS, 14 REB) chipped in and the ancient rookie Pablo Prigioni (6 PTS, 9 AST, 3 STL in 27 minutes) gave Jason Kidd plenty of rest. Amare Stoudemire was slightly better (10 PTS in 21 minutes) than in his first game, Steve Novak drained five 3-pointers and Marcus Camby took over from Kurt Thomas (DNP-CD) in the starting five.
January 4 Games
CLE @ CHA: After losing 18 straight, the Bobcats shocked the Bulls in Chicago on New Year’s Eve. Now they are rested and at home. Kemba Walker will be psyched against former Duke star Kyrie Irving; both are must-starts. Also returning to the state where he starred in college is Cavs’ rookie center Tyler Zeller, who continues to impress while filling in for Anderson Varejao (bruised knee). For Charlotte, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (scratched eye) is a game-time decision.