Posts Tagged ‘Mychal Thompson’

Morning shootaround — June 8

NEWS OF THE MORNING

Report: Love progressing, may play in Game 3 | Dirk, Mavs talk contract future | Magic confident ‘Showtime’ Lakers would beat Warriors

No. 1: Report: Love could be cleared for Game 3 The Cleveland Cavaliers are staring up at a 2-0 series hole in The Finals against the Golden State Warriors as Game 3 looms (9 p.m. ET, ABC). Getting back in the series starts with a win tonight and the Cavs need everyone in the mix, including Kevin Love, to pull that off. Love’s status for Game 3 has been in doubt because of the blow to the head he took in Game 2 and his need to pass the NBA’s concussion protocol. However, according to Chris Haynes of Clevleland.com, Love is confident he’ll be OK’d to go tonight:

Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love is progressing well in the NBA’s concussion protocol program and it’s very possible he will be cleared to play in Game 3 of the NBA Finals against the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday, cleveland.com has learned.

The Cavaliers will send out an update on his status this afternoon, but the release will not say if he’s able to go. That determination will be made closer to game time.

Team doctors are evaluating him around the clock. The power forward will have to show he can ride a stationary bike, jog, perform some light agility work and participate in non-contract drills without showing signs of concussion symptoms. The league will have the final say on if he can return to action.

Love did not practice Tuesday morning. He sustained the concussion in the second quarter of Sunday’s game after Harrison Barnes inadvertently elbowed him in the back of the head while going for a rebound.

Cleveland lost 110-77 and returns to Northeast Ohio 0-2 in the best-of-seven series. With or without Love, the Cavaliers desperately need a win. Veteran Richard Jefferson would likely get the start if Love is a no-go. The team understands the opposition won’t feel sorry for their state.

“It’s going to be next man up,” LeBron James said. “We’re down 0-2 and we can’t afford to look and say, ‘Wow, Kev’s not playing. What are we going to do?’ It’s next man up because it’s a must-win for us.”

Thompson Gives Spurs A Dilemma

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SAN ANTONIO — First it was Stephen Curry practically setting fire to the AT&T Center in Game 1 with his 44 points. Then along came Klay Thompson with his 34 in Game 2.

“I thought it was polite of them to at least take turns and not both be on fire on the same night,” cracked San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.

Good one-liner, but a real problem for San Antonio. As the series shifts to Oakland for the next two games, it seems the Spurs are either a defender short or woefully lacking enough firepower to keep up with the Golden State Warriors’ back court.

“I was just trying to do my best to keep up with Steph,” Thompson said. “I’ve seen him do it enough times, so I thought I’d try to see if I could keep up.”

He hardly could have anticipated a 29-point first half, setting a franchise record for a playoff game with eight buckets from behind the arc and the first double-double of his career with 14 rebounds. And let’s not forget the physical, smothering defense that he used all night to throw a wet blanket on Tony Parker.

For Thompson, there was only one thing worse than playing a part in the grand collapse of the Warriors in Game 1. That was not playing a part, which was his burden because he had fouled out and had to watch from the bench.

So, while the rest of his teammates tried to put on a happy face and act unfazed by the double-overtime loss, Thompson wore his disappointment as a hair shirt. He let it irritate him, bother him and prod him on.

“It was tough losing Game 1, because I felt like I was barely out there due to foul trouble, even I did play 32 minutes,” Thompson said. “Watching from the bench is one of the hardest things to do. But I learned from it and I think I showed I learned from it.”

The one he was most proud to show his lessons learned to was his father, ex-NBA star Mychal Thompson, who constants tell him to avoid cheap fouls.

“My dad is my biggest critic,” Thompson said. “Every game he tells me to stay out of foul trouble, so I probably gave him a hemorrhage the other night. I thought I did a good job of not making dumb fouls like I did in Game 1 and I just tried to play hard.”

If Thompson had played any harder, he’d have loosened the floorboards in the court. He made every kind of shot from every spot and every angle imaginable and he was a wrecking ball on defense. He not only disrupted Parker as the initiator of the Spurs offense, but also took turns on wing men Manu Ginobili and Kawhi Leonard. Toss in those 14 rebounds and it was enough to make you shake your head.

“Your stat line,” Curry marveled to his buddy, “is amazing.”

It was the kind of prolific game that his team needed to pull the series into a 1-1 tie, the kind of redemptive effort that Thompson needed personally to feel good about himself again and the kind of display that will have the Spurs scrambling for a solution by Game 3.

Curry blowing up one night, Thompson leaving a mushroom cloud the next.

“I have the greatest shooting backcourt that’s ever played the game,” said Warriors coach Mark Jackson. “Call my bluff.”

The Spurs might not know how.  That’s their dilemma.

Shots Fired By (And At) The Knicks

HANG TIME NEW JERSEY BUREAU — The start of the 2011-12 season is about 48 hours away, so it’s time to make your playoff and championship predictions. Even the players are getting in the act.

And when Amar’e Stoudemire was asked about the Miami Heat on Thursday, shots were fired, according to Anthony Sulla-Heffinger of the New York Post

“The Miami Heat are the guys. … They’re the Eastern Conference champions,” Stoudemire said. “I think Dallas is really on the throne and Miami is trying to climb the throne, but it’s too high for them to get up there.”

“Too high for them to get there” makes it sound like Stoudemire doesn’t think the Heat are championship caliber. Earlier in the day, he said that his Knicks were “hunting D-Wade and LeBron,” a claim that Dwyane Wade responded to via twitter

@Amareisreal I got those “hunting” tips for you. Hit me on the cell L2MS

Stoudemire said the Knicks’ goal is to win the championship, but admits his team isn’t quite ready yet…

“We’re not there yet. We have a lot of room to improve,” Stoudemire said. “We know how good we can be. The potential is pretty much doing what you haven’t done yet and to keep striving for greatness. I think we can be really, really good.”

Obviously, the Knicks will have to improve defensively to put themselves in position to win a championship. And while Tyson Chandler will help, Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony will also have to put more effort in on that end of the floor. Neither is a good defender.

In an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle, former Laker Mychal Thompson (father of Warriors rookie Klay Thompson) takes the ‘Melo-STAT criticism even further when asked about Chandler’s decision to play for the Knicks (rather than the Warriors)…

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