Morning shootaround — April 8


VIDEO: Highlights from games played April 7

NEWS OF THE MORNING

Davis: Warriors called matchup a ‘scrimmage’ | Report: Copeland stabbed in NYC club | Playoff hopes dimming for Thunder

No. 1: Davis: Warriors called matchup a ‘scrimmage’ — Entering last night’s game between the Warriors and Pelicans, two things were certain — Golden State had assured itself days earlier of the Wests’ best record and New Orleans was still fighting for its playoff life. According to Pelicans star Anthony Davis, the Warriors were so confident they would prevail, one player told New Orleans’ bench the game would be like a scrimmage for Golden State. After New Orleans beat Golden State 103-100 last night, Davis recounted that tale and more to ESPN.com’s Ethan Sherwood Strauss:

Pelicans All-Star Anthony Davis says a Golden State Warriors player told the host team’s bench in a spate of trash talk before a 103-100 victory for New Orleans that it would be an easy win for the West’s No. 1 seed.

“They came out and said it was going to be a scrimmage game,” Davis said of the Warriors in a TV interview after the game. “We kind of took that personal.”

In the locker room, Davis would not publicly elaborate on who the Warriors player was.

New Orleans trailed in the first half but rallied with a 60-point second half. Davis led the Pelicans with 29 points, 10 rebounds and four blocks.

“We just tried to come out and play,” Davis said. “They said what they said. You try to worry about us and what we’re going to do to try to win this game.”

When asked who the specific player was, Davis responded, “I don’t know who said it.”

“We don’t want to be this pushover team, guys come in and do whatever they want. That’s how we want to look at ourselves,” Davis said of beating the top-seeded Warriors.


VIDEO: Anthony Davis elaborates on his postgame comments

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No. 2: Pacers’ Copeland stabbed in New York City club — According to New York Daily NewsRocco Parascandola, Indiana Pacers forward Chris Copeland and his wife, Katrine Saltara, were among those injured by an attacker during an argument at the 1Oak Club in Chelsea, New York, on Wednesday morning. Copeland, his wife and other victims were rushed to Bellevue Hospital, where they are said to be in stable condition. Two players from the Atlanta Hawks — Pero Antic and Thabo Sefolosha — were also arrested for refusing to move while police set up a crime scene. Here’s Parascandola’s report from the Daily News on the incident:

A former member of the New York Knicks now playing for the Indiana Pacers was stabbed in the abdomen — and his wife slashed — during an argument at 1 OAK club in Chelsea early Wednesday, cop sources said.

Chris Copeland’s attacker was arrested, and two other men, both of whom play for the Atlanta Hawks, were also booked for trying to prevent police from setting up a crime scene, the sources said.

A second woman was also stabbed amid the fracas, which happened shortly before 4 a.m., as the popular club on West 17th St. was preparing to close. An argument erupted as Copeland, the other victims and the suspect were leaving, the sources said.

The man who was arrested, Shezoy Bleary, 22, pulled out a knife and stabbed Copeland, 31, and slashed 28-year-old Katrine Saltara, described as Copeland’s wife, in the arm and leg, the sources said.

The second woman, 53, was slashed in the abdomen.

Copeland was in New York because the Pacers are playing the Knicks at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night. He and the other victims were rushed to Bellevue Hospital and were in stable condition, the sources said.

When police arrived at the scene, they busted Bleary and recovered a knife, sources said. Charges against him were pending.

The two members of Hawks who were arrested, Thabo Sefolosha, 30, and Pero Antic, 32, refused to move when police tried to set up a crime scene, the sources said. They were charged with obstructing governmental administration.

The Hawks, meanwhile, are in town to play the Brooklyn Nets at the Barclays Center.

Natasha Velez of the New York Post has a report on what may have sparked the argument and stabbing:

Chris Copeland, 31, was arguing with his wife outside the infamous Chelsea hotspot on West 17th Street around 4 a.m. when the 22-year-old suspect interrupted them, police sources said.

Copeland told the man to get lost, which is when the suspect pulled out a knife and stabbed Copeland in the stomach, police sources said.

He then turned the blade on the basketball player’s wife, Katrine Saltara, and stabbed her in the breast, buttocks and arm, police sources said. Another woman, who was known to the stabber, was also attacked.

The suspect, whose name has not been released, was taken into custody at the scene and charges against him are pending.

It wasn’t immediately clear what sparked the violence.

Candace Buckner of the Indianapolis Star chimed in on the Daily News‘ report as well:

A public information officer in the New York Police Department’s Office of the Deputy Commissioner confirmed to the Indianapolis Star that a 31-year-old man was stabbed at the 1 OAK club at 453 West 17th Street just before 4 a.m.

But police would not release the name of the man stabbed, citing that he is a “witness to a crime.”

A 28-year-old woman was also stabbed, police said.

Both suffered non-life threatening wounds.

Officers arrested one man in connection with the stabbing, police said. He has not been charged.

And, the Pacers released the following statement from team president Larry Bird this morning:

“We are aware that Chris Copeland was injured early this morning in New York City.  We are still gathering information and will update when we know more. Our thoughts are with Chris and those injured.”

And per Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Hawks have responded to Antic and Sefolosha being involved in the incident …

***

No. 3: Thunder playoff hopes on thinning ice — No matter how this season (and the West playoff chase) shakes out, give Oklahoma City a lot of credit for fighting hard just to make the playoffs. But after last night’s blowout home loss at the hands of the surging San Antonio Spurs, the Thunder have a tough — if not impossible — road to making the playoffs ahead of themselves, writes Barry Trammel of The Oklahoman:

D.J. Augustin, Kyle Singler, Enes Kanter and Steve Novak arrived via trade on Feb. 20, with the injury-riddled Thunder a season-high four games over .500. Three easy wins pushed OKC to 32-25.

But since then, the bad news and the losses have mounted. Kevin Durant, sidelined for the season, without having played a single game with the February newcomers. Serge Ibaka, out since March 13 and who knows when he’ll return. The Thunder is 42-36 overall. The playoffs now seem a longshot, with the Pelicans owning a better record (42-35) and the tiebreaker.

Of course, if the playoffs are more games like this one, who needs it? The Thunder now is 6-21 against the eight Western Conference teams ahead in the standings, including four straight losses, to Dallas, Memphis, Houston and San Antonio.

“You’re playing against good teams,” Singler said. “And when you’re playing against good teams, you can’t let games slip.”

That’s the trouble with the playoffs. Only good teams await. A team regressing, like these Boomers, has no chance even if they back in to the postseason.

A second blowout loss to the Spurs in 14 days was particularly distressing. The offense stunk early. Then the defense collapsed.

The Spurs were gracious in victory.

“They’re missing two big pieces,” said Boris Diaw, the Spurs’ delightful jack-of-all-trades. “They’re a little down right now. That messes up the whole rest of the team.”

Spur coach Gregg Popovich said, “No matter how you slice it, it is just not a fair fight. We are going to take the win and I thought we played well, but you just still feel badly when you see Kevin (Durant) in that chair out there and the other guys that are hurt. It is just not a fair fight.”

But they don’t do it for fair.

“Nobody going to come through the door and save us,” said Dion Waiters. “It’s up to us. Tough times like this, we gotta stick together.”

***

SOME RANDOM HEADLINES: The Boston Celtics may pursue a contract extension with Jae CrowderJamal Crawford is glad he got back in the Clippers’ lineup before the playoffs begin … It’s not sounding good for the Charlotte Hornets to get Al Jefferson, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist or Cody Zeller back before the end of the seasonThaddeus Young may be the guy who has saved the Brooklyn Nets season … According to a report, the group led by Grant Hill and Junior Bridgeman has dropped out of its bid to attempt to buy the Atlanta HawksGerald Green isn’t sure if the Phoenix Suns want him around any more

ICYMI(s) of the Night: If the Pelicans end up making the playoffs, last night’s win against the Warriors will stand out and this clutch runner by Anthony Davis will, too … 


VIDEO: Anthony Davis seals the win with a clutch shot

… and, the NBA rule of thumb still applies: if you’re open, Andre Miller will find you …


VIDEO: Derrick Williams climbs the ladder to flush home the alley-oop

15 Comments

  1. Defdun says:

    Warriors intensity is going down instead of up…and getting the opponents fired up with dumb remarks…
    Just check the Spurs if you want to see the right mindset of a team and optimal coaching getting ready for another playoff run. Dubs will have to learn before they can play up there with the best of them. This year will be too early for them to win it all.

  2. NBAARON says:

    Draymond green can’t matchup against Davis. Bogut has to guard Asik when he is back. The Warriors are going to have to double Davis a lot or find a different person to guard Davis. I don’t really know. You can’t use zone against players like Evans and Gordon, so what do you do?

  3. harriethehawk says:

    I think the Golden Flake Warriors have every right to tell ANY team “this is just a scrimmage” to us. Hey, they are the best team in the NBA. The only thing about trash talking though, is you better back it up. Oh, did they win? lol

  4. dustydreamnz says:

    1. That’s an absolute disgrace by whoever that was, Draymond Green or whoever it was. I thought it would be a close game, the Warriors aren’t the same team on the road and the Pelicans have been good lately especially with Anderson back.
    Giving them extra motivation for the playoffs isn’t wise because lets face it, OKC are done.
    Just love how modest the Spurs are, it’s a big part of their success.
    I hope the Celtics re-sign Jae Crowder, he’s been good for them.
    Not sure why Gerald Green doesn’t get more minutes, he is a bit inconsistent but the man can score.

  5. gonop2015 says:

    Draymond Green was the one who went to the Pelicans bench and told them it would be an easy win for the Warriors. He told them it was a scrimmage for them and Anthony Davis got upset.

  6. Skrutz says:

    I really hope the Pels make it over OKC. OKC vs GSW would be a waste of time, and sad too. Give AD and his squad some much needed playoff experience. It’s his next step to becoming a huge superstar, and I think he could do some damage. OKC would just get murdered – although Westbrook would put on a show.

  7. Jagger says:

    Pelicans are playing for a purpose. Warriors are cruising. The mind games have started and whoever the Warriors player who allegedly made the statement should know better. He just gave the Pelicans, a potential first round, some drive to beat them or die trying.

    • K says:

      Trash talking goes on all the time. If you’re afraid of getting someone fired up and motivated to play then you’re afraid of competition. I laud the player who wanted to get the best out of their competitors.

  8. Miguel says:

    If you can’t name the player who said what you saying then shut your trap! I like AD but you’re talking trash publicly trying to create something out of nothing! Don’t start being a baby now! Either way good luck rest of the year!

    • Skrutz says:

      What? Being a baby? He’s more professional by not naming names. The other player is immature and foolish for riling up the whole opposing team, and got beat because of it.

      And really, if they face eachother in the playoffs… who doesn’t want some bad blood? More fun.

  9. Caldron Pool says:

    Warriors need a reality check. They haven’t done anything yet this year. Everything gets reset in the playoffs. Plus, you know it was Draymond Green who said it.

  10. Indiana'sownLarryBird says:

    Anthony Davis in the playoffs would be awesome. He’s a top five player maybe 2 best next to Lebron.

  11. TheKush says:

    I’d rather watch the Pelicans vs. Warriors in the playoffs rather than watch OKC get swept by the Warriors. The Pels match up well with the warriors Bogut is rendered useless against Pelicans and with AD and all those guards Steph Curry can be held in check. That series could even go to 7. I hope the Pelicans take the 8th spot. OKC is hurting and Westbrook already proved his point that he’s an elite guard in the league – there’s no need to watch OKC get swept in the first round.

  12. well... says:

    … you don`t tell after the game about trash talking and what was said on the court. You just don`t, well at least publicly.

  13. en. says:

    I’m getting tired of the golden state warriors they are becoming more arrogant like the back then miami heat, ….curry for mvp, most valuable pu$$ y