Sunday only has three games on the schedule, nothing earth-shattering but there’s a few good matchups to watch. Starting at 6 p.m. Eastern, the Indiana Pacers host the Boston Celtics in what could very well be a lopsided game. At 7 the Toronto Raptors pay a visit to the Oklahoma City Thunder. The potential game of the night, however, isn’t until 9:30 when the Minnesota Timberwolves square off against the Los Angeles Clippers. Kevin Love and Blake Griffin is an interesting matchup between two “non-traditional” big players in the league. Chris Paul against Ricky Rubio will be fun, both are excellent passers.
Yesterday fans were treated to 12 games, which included a tilt between the San Antonio Spurs and Thunder. The night before, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich opted to rest Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili, likely with this game in mind, but it didn’t pay off. OKC was too much for San Antonio and took the game 113-100, led by Russell Westbrook who had 31.
But the thriller last night was in Portland, where the Blazers and New Orleans Pelicans met in front of a sold-out crowd at the Moda Center. Led by second-year point guard Damian Lillard, the Blazers didn’t have any trouble finishing business after a Pelicans run in the fourth quarter. Lillard was clutch in the final minutes and helped his team land a 110-107 victory.
Now let’s get to the latest from around the NBA:
The Houston Rockets will be without the services of starting point guard Patrick Beverley for the next 4-6 weeks. Beverley suffered a break to his fourth metacarpal in a 114-97 win over the Pistons in Detroit, according to the Houston Chronicle. The second-year player has averaged 9.6 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 25 games this season. The Rockets should be able to overcome the loss of Beverley by adding Jeremy Lin to the starting lineup and by giving James Harden extra ball handling responsibilities. Lin has missed 10 of the last 12 games but he’s optimistic about returning soon. “Hopefully, I’ll be back Monday if there are no setbacks,” Lin said. “Just to get back in shape after having to sit, not do anything for a while, not even really being able to sit, let alone jog or run, it’s good to sweat again and get your body going.” In the meantime, the Rockets plan to call up rookie Isaiah Canaan from the NBA Development League, reports Jonathan Feigen. Canaan averaged 21.7 points and 9.2 assists with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers. Houston currently sits second in the Southwest Division with a 18-10 record.
Pat Beverley said he was told his fourth metacapal was fractured and would be out 4 to 6 weeks. Talk in locker room sounded more like 6.
— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) December 22, 2013
In an interview with NBA TV, Carmelo Anthony called LeBron James’ decision to sign with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami in the summer of 2010 “smart,” writes Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com. Its been speculated over recent months that Anthony is on his way out of New York during the next free agency period. The most common rumor has him going to LA and becoming a Laker, others believe he’ll recruit other free agents such as Kevin Love and Rajon Rondo to New York. Melo can make more money if he re-signs with the Knicks instead of joining another suitor, writes Begley. With the Knicks, he could ink a a five-year contract worth $129,135,806. If he signs with another team, the maximum he can earn is $95,897,372 over four years. Either way, it appears something drastic will happen this offseason in New York. What exactly? That remains to be seen. But this time next year it’s almost impossible to imagine the Knicks will have the same roster.
We can make it four rings for Dwyane Wade, well kind of. On Saturday evening he proposed to his longtime girlfriend and TV actress Gabrielle Union, and he did it in a rather unique way. Writes Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press:
— His youngest son Zion held a sign with her name.
— His nephew Dahveon Morris’ sign said “Will you.”
— And his oldest son Zaire’s sign read “marry us?”
Bewildered, Union turned to Wade and saw him on bended knee, then realized what was happening. An 8½-carat cushion cut diamond sealed the deal, and with that, Wade was an engaged man again.
Another classy move by Wade. He was upfront with Union and made it clear that if she wanted to marry him, she had to marry the family, and that she did.
Brett Poirier is a contributor to Sheridan Hoops. Follow @BrettNBA