Rookie Rankings, Week 14: McGary Gives Thunder a Bolt of Energy

Thunder jersey sleeves

Mitch McGary was unexpectedly thrown into the spotlight this week. He’s going to be there a while. The burly rookie forward of the Oklahoma City Thunder had spent most of his first NBA season recovering from injuries while toiling in the D-League. Prior to Sunday, he had played just eight minutes over two games this season while averaging 14.7 points and 7.8 rebounds in eight games for the Blue, Oklahoma City’s affiliate. But on Sunday, the Thunder were hosting the Los Angeles


Bernucca: The Hawks Are Real and They Are Spectacular

Hawks core for 2014

Why do doubts remain about the Atlanta Hawks? The Hawks are 40-8. They have lost twice since Thanksgiving. They have beaten Chicago, Cleveland, Houston, Dallas, the LA Clippers, Cleveland again, Portland, the Clippers again, Memphis, Washington, Toronto, Chicago again, Oklahoma City and Portland again. The Hawks just completed the best undefeated month in NBA history, going 17-0 in January. They have won 19 consecutive games, the fifth-longest streak in league annals. They have won 12 straight road games. What seems to be the


Artest’s Stint in China May Come to a Premature End


Metta World Peace, Ron Artest, Panda Friend. Whatever the name is on his medical form and the roster chart, the diagnosis is still the same: ‘Recurrence of knee injury – recovery time: three-to-five weeks.’ In the NBA, this would mean a spell on the sidelines. But in the Chinese Basketball Association, it is often the end of the season for an overseas player. This is the ruthless nature of life in the CBA, particularly for the league’s American imports. They’re brought in


Tweet of the Night: D-Leaguer Willie Reed Turns To Social Media For Support

In 2011, a 6-10, 220-pound forward named Willie Reed, a junior for the Saint Louis University Billikens, went undrafted in the NBA. Since then, he has made a career of being a journeyman D-League athlete, playing for the Springfield Armor, the Reno Bighorns and, most recently, the Grand Rapids Drive. His most recent assignment with the Rapids began November 22nd against the Canton Charge. He had a great night, finishing with 24 points on 11-of-13 shooting with 15 rebounds. Heading into his


Tweet of the Day: Cavaliers Rookie Alex Kirk Needs An Apartment

Alex Kirk, the 2014 undrafted Cleveland Cavaliers rookie center, was signed to a contract back in August. He had a fair showing in the preseason, averaging five points, three rebounds and just under one block in nearly 15 minutes of play. Over the weekend, he was informed that he had made the team’s 15-man roster. The former University of New Mexico college starter will likely see time with the team’s D-League affiliate, the Canton Charge, before he gets time with the


Celtics and Nets largely unaffected by experimental 44-minute game


Adding some small degree of excitement to what would have been a dull, mundane preseason game at the Barclays Center, the league conducted an experiment with the Celtics and Nets playing 11-minute quarters on Sunday. In addition to the one fewer minute per quarter, there were two media timeouts in the second and fourth quarters instead of the normal three. The shorter 44-minute long game, the first one in NBA history, ended in a pleasant one hour and 58 minutes with the Celtics


NBA to Experiment With 44-Minute Preseason Game


If you’re like me, then you know that the best thing about League Pass is those Wednesday and Friday nights where there are 10 or 12 or 13 games and you can just keep bouncing around to watch the last four minutes of each one. One-possession game, four minutes to go. We all live for that crap, right? Well, this Sunday, NBA is taking those four minutes away. Sort of. Sunday’s preseason game between the Boston Celtics and Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center


Bernucca: You Can Have the NCAA Tournament


I don’t like the NCAA Tournament. I don’t like that college basketball’s regular season provides little postseason incentive. I don’t like that the coach is a bigger personality than the players. I don’t like that the games are played on neutral courts. I don’t like that one bad game or bad call or bad break can end a team’s season. I don’t like that “close” becomes a synonym for “well-played.” And I don’t like that poor play determines the outcome much