Weekly Fantasy Planner: Can the Clips get past the Warriors twice this week?

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Week 10 of the NBA Season coincides with the New Year. The Los Angeles Clippers look to continue to roll with their 16 game win streak. They have done it against a pretty tough schedule and this week it doesn’t get any easier with four games in five nights including @DEN – the league’s best home record, home to LAL in a pseudo home game for both clubs and a home and away against the surprising Warriors, who have no one but the Clippers to prepare for this week.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, the Charlotte Bobcats are carrying an 18 game losing streak following a heartbreaker against New Orleans last night. Their best hope for a win this week is Friday against the equally lowly Cavaliers. They get three days of rest to prepare for Kyrie Irving and company.

One team has already gotten started on its New Year’s resolutions. Last week, we highlighted that the schedule favored the Brooklyn Nets with 3 very winnable games while the rest of their division was playing exclusively on the road. After losing the first one, they fired head coach Avery Johnson and gave P.J. Carlesimo the interim responsibilities. They won those last two winnable games and gained ground on everyone but the Raptors. They are so happy, there are rumours that Carlesimo will be offered the job full time. This week though the schedule gets a lot tougher and opinions are likely to change.

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Raptors sign Mickael Pietrus

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raptors small logoIn an effort to close their gaping hole at small forward, the slumping Toronto Raptors on Friday signed veteran Mickael Pietrus.

No terms were disclosed. Pietrus spent last season with the Boston Celtics but was not re-signed. During the offseason, he was looking for either a multi-year deal or a one-year contract at more than the veteran’s minimum. The France native also contemplated playing in Europe.

Bernucca: Money for nothing, checks for free


Now that we are about a month into the NBA season, are you disappointed in the performance of a player or two on your favorite team?

Take a number and get in line.

There are dozens of players who are not coming close to meeting expectations this season. And when you factor in their salaries and how much they limit their team’s financial flexibility, it can be downright infuriating.

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SH Blog: D’Antoni introduced as coach, says Howard can be in every play

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We all have a general idea of what Mike D’Antoni wants to do as the coach of the Los Angeles Lakers.

Get them to score a whole lot more, for one.

D’Antoni is a well-documented offensive wizard, so if anyone can figure out how to best utilize the endless amount of talent on the roster, it would be him, no matter what Magic Johnson wants to say about it.

We don’t know, however, of his plans in greater detail – mostly because we haven’t heard him say anything about it yet.

That changed on Thursday when he was officially introduced as the newest head coach of the team.

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Tweet of the Night: DeMar DeRozan

Who the hell is John Hollinger!? #Clown
DeMar DeRozan

To explain DeMar DeRozan’s anger towards ESPN’s John Hollinger, we’ll have to go back to what happened earlier on Wednesday.

Toronto Sun writer Ryan Wolstat said Raptors head coach Dwane Casey was insulted by ESPN’s prediction of his team going 33-49 for the upcoming season. Here is exactly what Casey had to say on the matter:

“I saw today someone predict we’re going to win 33 games, so, with that lack of respect, that should get us motivated to come in this gym each and every day to bust our tails … I’m just telling you guys that, Hollinger report or whatever it was. That right there tells us how much lack of respect the league has for us and how much we’ve got to continue to work each and every day we walk on the floor.”

Apparently, some were simply more insulted than motivated. It’s one thing to have a desire to prove the critics wrong – that’s always a good thing.
It’s another thing, however, to call them names because you don’t like where they ranked your team – someone has to be at the bottom, after all.

The Raptors were 23-43 last season and 22-60 in the 2010-2011 season. The team last made the playoffs in the 2007-2008 season, two seasons before DeRozan was even in the league.

With the addition of critical pieces to the team like Kyle Lowry, Landry Fields and Jonas Valanciunas in the offseason, better times may be ahead for Toronto. Still, they have yet to prove anything. Once they If they actually make some noise in the upcoming season, perhaps then, DeRozan will have more of a reason to call someone a clown for doubting his team.

On a complete side note, be sure to check out Kevin Love’s Tweet of the Day. Retweeting this particular tweet from Love will help him donate to Breast Cancer charity. Good man, indeed.

Tweet of the Night: Shaquille O’Neal