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Premium Article Dubious History (02/08)

February 8, 2011
The Shootaround
Blazers Topple Bulls

by Bradford Doolittle

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HEADLINER

TRAIL BLAZERS 109, BULLS 103 (box): LaMarcus Aldridge scored a career-high 42 points on 15-of-23 shooting, leading Portland to a nice win in a hard-fought game at the Rose Garden. The loss was the Bulls' second straight. Chicago hasn't lost more than two in a row yet this season, but finishes a five-game road trip with games at Utah (Wednesday) and New Orleans (Saturday).

Aldridge beat the Bulls in every way a big man can beat a team. He scored on straight post-ups. He hit face-up jumpers. He went off the dribble and drew fouls. He scored in transition. He dunked on alley-oops when the Bulls fronted him. Chicago tried Taj Gibson, Carlos Boozer and Omer Asik on him at various times to little effect. (Yet never tried to double him, a strategy that Tom Thibodeau seems reluctant to deploy.) This was a game that underscored the element the Bulls lack without Joakim Noah in the lineup. That's not to take anything away from Aldridge, who was fantastic. I have to agree with those Portland fans screaming that LA should be on the All-Star team in place of San Antonio's Tim Duncan. It's not about what you can do, it's what you've actually done.

Andre Miller was almost as effective as Aldridge with his steady, ground-based game. He played Derrick Rose to a standstill, which is something not many point guards can stake claim to this season. Yes, Rose had 36 points, but Miller made him work on both ends. Portland did a great job of getting steals and deflections when Rose drove the lane and tried to kick out, as evidenced by the Bulls' 14 turnovers and Portland's 18-4 edge in fastbreak points.

The 120.5 Offensive Rating put up by Portland was the third-best put up by a Chicago opponent this season and the best since Dec. 1. The only worse showings by Thibodeau's signature defense were in early-season home losses to the Knicks and Magic. In both of those contests, the Bulls fell victim to a club that got ridiculously hot from three-point range. That wasn't the case with Portland, which decimated the Bulls with an inordinate amount of shots at the rim off of cuts from the back side. This is something that could linger into the Bulls' next game at Utah, because Jerry Sloan teams always are strong with its cutting action and the Bulls won't have much, if any, practice time to plug any defensive holes that might have sprung.

CHI (34-16).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR   POR (28-24).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR
rose,derrick.........80%  43%  0.98  -11 27.5   aldridge,lamarcus....91%  34%  1.19  +13 42.8
deng,luol............58%  28%  0.76  - 5 18.1   miller,andre.........87%  23%  1.56  +10 27.5
brewer,ronnie........48%  19%  0.99  + 1 17.0   batum,nicolas........81%  14%  1.14  +13 14.3
korver,kyle..........51%  16%  1.75  - 2 15.7   fernandez,rudy.......71%  21%  1.13  - 2 13.0
boozer,carlos........73%  18%  1.41  -11 15.4   matthews,wesley......95%  15%  0.49  + 9 12.5
asik,omer............24%  40%  0.94  + 7 10.4   mills,patrick........13%  15%  1.32  - 4  4.5
thomas,kurt..........46%   8%  0.46  -10  3.2   przybilla,joel.......47%   5%  0.90  + 1  3.8
watson,c.j...........20%   7%  1.21  + 5  2.4   marks,sean........... 8%  11%  1.31  - 5  2.1
gibson,taj...........56%   4%  1.17  + 2  2.1   babbitt,luke......... 6%  20%  0.00  - 5  0.0
bogans,keith.........43%   1%  1.86  - 6  2.0   camby,marcus.........(DNP)  
johnson,james........(DNP)                      cunningham,dante.....(DNP)  
scalabrine,brian.....(DNP)                      oden,greg............(DNP)  
PACE: 90.5          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%   PACE: 90.5          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%
Bulls............  113.8 .517  .425 .155 .088   Trail Blazers....  120.5 .529  .250 .188 .194

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LIVE AT BASKETBALL PROSPECTUS

Tuesday Truths: Post-NFL Edition (by John Gasaway): North Carolina and Alabama are rising, Washington and Michigan State are falling, and Wyoming's changing horses mid-stream. Time to pay attention to the sport where Green Bay's 6-6 in the Horizon League. (free)

The Clipboard: Nets' Morrow Adds to His Arsenal (by Sebastian Pruiti): Improvement in his mid-range game has made New Jersey's Anthony Morrow a more complete offensive player. (premium)

Dubious History: Cleveland's Streak Reaches 25 (by Kevin Pelton) The Cleveland Cavaliers battled the Dallas Mavericks to the final buzzer on Monday, but the result was still their 25th consecutive loss, setting a new NBA record. Are the Cavaliers as bad as their streak? (premium)

Revising Expectations: The America East (by Asher Fusco) In the preseason Asher, not to mention the league's coaches, picked Stony Brook to finish near the top of the America East. Now the Seawolves are 4-7. So who's really going to win this league, and can they do anything in March? (free)

BOGANS: Simple Individual Won-Lost Records (by Bradford Doolittle) Hand-wringing over Bulls guard Keith Bogans leads us to an alternative use of plus-minus figures. (premium)

The List: Tar Heels Rising (by John Perrotto): On the strength of a 7-1 start to ACC play, a North Carolina team that struggled in non-conference play makes one of the biggest leaps in Basketball Prospectus' rankings this week. (premium)

Trend Watch: Augustin, Suns D, Rookie Challenge (by Kevin Pelton): This week's Trend Watch looks at D.J. Augustin blossoming since Charlotte's coaching change, the Suns becoming defensive-minded with Marcin Gortat's emergence and the rookie and sophomore classes through recent years. (premium)

The Clipboard: Mavericks Thrive in the Zone (by Sebastian Pruiti): Zone defense is generally considered to be a desperation option for weak-defending teams, but Dallas coach Rick Carlisle has successfully made the zone a primary part of his defensive arsenal. (free preview)

Start/Sit Projections: Week of Feb. 7 (by Kevin Pelton): The first full week of February looks good for Andris Biedrins, but beware the schedule ahead for Landry Fields. (premium)

Stats Love Wisconsin: (And Humans Don't) (by John Gasaway): You know the routine. Bo Ryan is every laptop's favorite coach. Then March rolls around and the Badgers lose to still another feisty mid-major. In his feature for ESPN Insider, John looks at why this keeps happening to Wisconsin (premium)

Follow Unfiltered, the Basketball Prospectus blog.

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FANTASY PROJECTIONS

Our downloadable Basketball Fantasy Projection spreadsheets are available for anyone with a premium subscription to Basketball Prospectus. The sheet is updated weekly and can be found on your 'Manage Profile' page. The download includes a forecast for the seven days, Monday through Sunday, for every player, game-by-game projections, health status updates and current team rotations. (Current projections reflect week of Feb. 7-13.)

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HOOPS CHATS

Basketball Prospectus authors take your questions from time to time in always-popular chat format. All chats begin at 1 p.m. EST on the day listed, but you can go in and submit a question beforehand if you like, or read the transcript after the fact.

Feb. 3: Kevin Pelton (TRANSCRIPT)

Jan. 28: Bradford Doolittle (TRANSCRIPT)

Jan. 14: John Gasaway (TRANSCRIPT)

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HOT FIVES

POWER RATING (POW)      GR (02/07/11)           WP82 -- ALL          WP82 -- ROOKIES
spurs,sanantonio, 64.9  anthony,carmelo, 56.0   james,lebron, 34.6   griffin,blake, 19.5
celtics,boston, 58.3    aldridge,lamarcus, 42.8 paul,chris, 31.8     wall,john, 5.2
heat,miami, 57.9        martin,kevin, 39.2      rose,derrick, 27.8   fields,landry, 5.1
mavericks,dallas, 55.5  ellis,monta, 31.8       williams,deron, 26.6 neal,gary, 4.7
lakers,losangeles, 54.3 terry,jason, 30.5       gasol,pau, 26.3      turner,evan, 3.4
Note: GR leaders are from previous night only.

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LEADERBOARD

TEAM ATHLETIC RATINGS
TEAM, ATH                         TEAM, ATH
 1. Utah Jazz, 31.0               16. Los Angeles Lakers, 23.6
 2. Memphis Grizzlies, 29.2       17. Philadelphia 76ers, 23.4
 3. Los Angeles Clippers, 27.5    18. Indiana Pacers, 23.2
 4. Chicago Bulls, 27.4           19. Miami Heat, 23.2
 5. New York Knicks, 27.3         20. Sacramento Kings, 23.1
 6. San Antonio Spurs, 27.3       21. New Orleans Hornets, 22.7
 7. Oklahoma City Thunder, 27.0   22. Portland Trail Blazers, 22.6
 8. Houston Rockets, 26.1         23. Orlando Magic, 22.4
 9. Golden State Warriors, 25.7   24. Milwaukee Bucks, 22.3
10. Charlotte Bobcats, 25.6       25. Toronto Raptors, 21.9
11. Minnesota Timberwolves, 25.3  26. Detroit Pistons, 21.3
12. Boston Celtics, 25.2          27. Dallas Mavericks, 20.5
13. Denver Nuggets, 24.7          28. Atlanta Hawks, 18.6
14. Washington Wizards, 24.0      29. New Jersey Nets, 18.3
15. Cleveland Cavaliers, 23.6     30. Phoenix Suns, 17.4
NOTE: ATH is a measure of team or player athleticism. It takes 
into account rebounding, foul-drawing, steals and blocks, all
adjusted for body type and tempo.

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MONDAY'S RESULTS

NOTE: Glossary is at bottom of page.

BOBCATS 94, CELTICS 89 (box): Shaun Livingston put up his second-best GR score of the season and scored a season-best 18 points, good enough to keep starter D.J. Augustin on the bench for the fourth quarter.

BOS (38-13).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR   CHA (22-29).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR
rondo,rajon..........90%  21%  0.95  - 6 22.4   livingston,shaun.....46%  34%  1.07  +10 23.4
allen,ray............81%  27%  1.09  - 2 18.5   wallace,gerald.......86%  23%  1.07  + 3 17.7
garnett,kevin........64%  19%  1.11  + 4 17.4   hendersonjr,gerald...73%  20%  0.93  + 9 13.0
pierce,paul..........74%  26%  1.07  + 2 16.3   augustin,d.j.........54%  19%  1.04  - 5 11.2
perkins,kendrick.....74%   9%  1.10  - 2  9.7   diaw,boris...........62%  11%  1.37  - 4  9.0
davis,glen...........48%  17%  0.59  -12  4.2   brown,kwame..........61%  16%  0.82  - 5  8.5
wafer,von............31%  15%  0.95  - 3  3.6   jackson,stephen......30%  40%  0.84  - 5  7.1
harangody,luke.......15%  12%  1.50  + 0  1.9   najera,eduardo.......39%  10%  1.21  +10  7.0
robinson,nate........23%  16%  0.40  - 6  1.1   mohammed,nazr........39%  10%  0.56  + 9  1.9
bradley,avery........(DNP)                      brown,derrick........11%  10%  2.12  + 3  1.5
erden,semih..........(DNP)                      collins,sherron......(DNP)  
o'neal,shaquille.....(DNP)                      mcguire,dominic......(DNP)  
PACE: 93.6          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%   PACE: 93.6          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%
Celtics..........   95.0 .441  .114 .150 .127   Bobcats..........  100.4 .449  .256 .182 .141

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LAKERS 93, GRIZZLIES 84 (box): It was a missed opportunity for the Grizzlies, whose stay in the eighth spot on the West standings proved to be short-lived, but they did get a career-high 22 points from Sam Young.

LAL (36-16).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR   MEM (27-26).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR
gasol,pau............75%  18%  1.28  + 6 24.3   young,sam............70%  30%  1.00  -10 26.4
odom,lamar...........64%  26%  1.13  +10 17.5   gay,rudy.............84%  20%  1.17  - 3 15.2
artest,ron...........81%  18%  1.17  +11 14.2   gasol,marc...........82%  17%  0.90  -10 13.7
bryant,kobe..........79%  33%  0.86  - 4 13.0   randolph,zach........84%  22%  0.67  - 6 13.2
bynum,andrew.........61%  16%  1.32  + 2 12.6   conley,mike..........81%  17%  1.19  - 8 11.7
fisher,derek.........69%   9%  2.04  + 3 12.2   allen,tony...........45%  13%  1.13  - 6  9.0
brown,shannon........31%  29%  0.62  + 5  5.7   arthur,darrell.......30%  10%  1.52  - 9  4.0
blake,steve..........31%   3%  3.56  + 6  5.1   vasquez,greivis......19%  13%  0.93  - 1  2.5
walton,luke..........10%  11%  0.97  + 6  1.5   thabeet,hasheem...... 4%  26%  0.00  + 5  0.0
caracter,derrick.....(DNP)                      henry,xavier.........(DNP)  
ebanks,devin.........(DNP)                      carroll,demarre......(DNP)  
smith,joe............(DNP)                      haddadi,hamed........(DNP)  
PACE: 87.8          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%   PACE: 87.8          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%
Lakers...........  105.9 .486  .311 .159 .175   Grizzlies........   95.7 .422  .326 .194 .085

---

TIMBERWOLVES 104, HORNETS 92 (box): Kevin Love (27 points, 17 rebounds) tied a Minnesota record with his 37th straight double-double against a New Orleans team that is having a tough time playing through injuries to Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza.

MIN (12-39).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR   NWO (32-21).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR
love,kevin...........92%  20%  1.55  + 9 25.7   belinelli,marco......59%  28%  1.04  + 4 24.8
beasley,michael......65%  26%  0.87  +12 18.8   paul,chris...........76%  18%  1.73  + 6 16.9
tolliver,anthony.....59%  11%  2.19  +15 15.0   west,david...........71%  30%  0.81  + 7 14.2
pekovic,nikola.......27%  27%  1.45  - 2 14.5   green,willie.........33%  25%  1.36  + 0 10.4
telfair,sebastian....28%  27%  1.40  +15 14.2   gray,aaron...........35%  14%  1.05  - 8  7.8
flynn,jonny..........72%  21%  1.07  - 3 13.2   pavlovic,sasha.......44%  16%  0.65  - 2  6.7
ellington,wayne......57%  18%  0.96  +18  7.3   thornton,marcus......28%  20%  1.37  -12  6.4
johnson,wesley.......46%  13%  1.24  + 5  4.4   andersen,david.......19%  20%  1.11  -10  5.9
brewer,corey.........32%  17%  0.58  - 7  1.9   pondexter,quincy.....41%  17%  0.47  -23  3.4
hayward,lazar........11%  16%  0.52  + 1  1.0   smith,jason..........36%   8%  1.54  - 1  2.8
milicic,darko........ 8%  13%  0.00  + 3  0.0   jack,jarrett.........24%  14%  0.91  -18  2.0
koufos,kosta.........(DNP)                      ilungambenga,didier..34%   9%  0.62  - 3  1.2
PACE: 89.6          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%   PACE: 89.6          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%
Timberwolves.....  116.1 .500  .297 .156 .123   Hornets..........  102.7 .452  .340 .190 .108

---

MAVERICKS 99, CAVALIERS 96 (box): Yesterday, I noted that the Cavaliers have been outscored 14 times out of 15 games with Christian Eyenga on the floor ... well, make it 15 of 16 and, this time, Eyenga was the only Cleveland starter in the red.

CLE (8-44)..........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR   DAL (36-15).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR
sessions,ramon.......83%  18%  1.68  + 8 23.1   terry,jason..........70%  28%  1.23  + 9 30.5
jamison,antawn.......80%  29%  0.75  + 5 22.7   marion,shawn.........55%  33%  0.87  +12 16.3
hickson,j.j..........75%  28%  1.11  + 2 22.4   barea,jose...........48%  16%  1.59  +15 15.6
eyenga,christian.....58%  24%  0.96  - 7 15.3   mahinmi,ian..........43%  22%  1.02  +22 11.1
parker,anthony.......67%  14%  0.99  + 5 11.9   nowitzki,dirk........65%  23%  0.70  -10  9.6
moon,jamario.........37%  11%  0.96  + 3  2.2   kidd,jason...........71%   9%  1.95  - 9  8.5
hollins,ryan.........32%  14%  0.67  - 4  2.1   chandler,tyson.......65%  13%  1.08  -16  5.3
gibson,daniel........43%   9%  0.56  -11  1.7   stojakovic,peja......41%  21%  0.91  + 2  4.4
graham,joey..........12%   6%  0.62  - 9  0.6   stevenson,deshawn....35%   8%  1.20  - 8  3.5
harris,manny.........12%  15%  0.00  - 7  0.0   cardinal,brian....... 6%  16%  0.20  - 2  0.3
gee,alonzo...........(DNP)                      haywood,brendan......(DNP)  
samuels,samardo......(DNP)                      jones,dominique......(DNP)  
PACE: 94.3          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%   PACE: 94.3          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%
Cavaliers........  101.9 .456  .255 .149 .079   Mavericks........  105.0 .452  .340 .180 .126

---

ROCKETS 108, NUGGETS 103 (box): Carmelo Anthony matched his career-high with 50 points, the second 50-point performance this season, and the third-best GR score of the year behind two Kevin Durant games ... and the Nuggets lost.

HOU (25-28).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR   DEN (29-23).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR
martin,kevin.........83%  38%  1.12  + 1 39.2   anthony,carmelo......82%  39%  1.26  - 3 56.0
scola,luis...........81%  26%  1.01  + 8 23.5   lawson,ty............71%  25%  0.96  - 1 14.7
budinger,chase.......48%  16%  1.29  + 3 11.4   harrington,al........71%  17%  0.79  -11  8.3
hayes,chuck..........69%  11%  1.56  + 6 10.9   smith,j.r............71%  15%  0.73  + 2  7.0
lowry,kyle...........78%  16%  0.95  + 2  8.1   billups,chauncey.....19%  18%  1.46  - 3  5.9
lee,courtney.........39%  11%  1.49  - 2  7.1   martin,kenyon........45%  20%  0.55  - 6  4.0
miller,brad..........20%  19%  0.78  + 3  3.3   andersen,chris.......42%   4%  1.24  - 3  3.0
smith,ishmael........26%  10%  1.60  + 0  2.7   forbes,gary..........20%  29%  0.28  + 1  2.3
patterson,patrick....16%  22%  0.26  + 0  1.0   afflalo,arron........59%   7%  0.34  - 6  1.0
battier,shane........40%   8%  0.23  + 4  0.4   carter,anthony.......19%   3%  0.42  + 5  0.2
jeffries,jared.......(DNP)                      ely,melvin...........(DNP)  
williams,terrence....(DNP)                      williams,shelden.....(DNP)  
PACE: 100.5         ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%   PACE: 100.5         ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%
Rockets..........  107.5 .488  .140 .139 .153   Nuggets..........  102.5 .474  .244 .169 .188

---

JAZZ 107, KINGS 104 (box): Omri Casspi badly missed a contested three-pointer that could have tied the game at the buzzer, as the Jazz continue to scuffle, even when winning.

UTA (31-22).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR   SAC (12-36).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR
williams,deron.......80%  24%  1.22  + 4 26.0   cousins,demarcus.....63%  36%  0.99  + 6 20.8
bell,raja............79%  20%  0.87  - 1 21.7   evans,tyreke.........78%  27%  0.91  - 6 20.5
millsap,paul.........60%  26%  0.97  + 8 15.9   casspi,omri..........69%  18%  0.87  + 1 15.3
jefferson,al.........76%  24%  1.00  + 5 13.8   thompson,jason.......71%  18%  1.00  + 2 12.2
kirilenko,andrei.....77%  12%  1.11  + 6 13.8   udrih,beno...........83%   9%  1.51  - 4  8.9
fesenko,kyrylo.......38%  23%  1.19  - 2  8.1   head,luther..........19%  14%  1.73  + 3  7.5
miles,c.j............31%  22%  0.71  - 7  6.0   greene,donte.........28%   9%  1.65  + 0  6.7
watson,earl..........36%   6%  1.95  + 7  4.9   dalembert,samuel.....48%  17%  1.19  - 7  6.5
hayward,gordon.......15%   4%  0.39  + 4  0.3   jeter,pooh...........23%  18%  0.91  - 3  5.1
price,ronnie......... 6%  14%  0.00  - 4  0.0   landry,carl..........18%  25%  0.53  - 7  3.7
hayward,gordon.......(DNP)                      jackson,darnell......(DNP)  
elson,francisco......(DNP)                      taylor,jermaine......(DNP)  
PACE: 96.9          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%   PACE: 96.9          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%
Jazz.............  110.4 .494  .244 .144 .136   Kings............  107.3 .506  .333 .175 .132

---

SUNS 104, WARRIORS 92 (box): In my BOGANS piece yesterday, I noted Vince Carter's surprisingly good individual won-loss record (29-12-1), well, he's 12-1 in his last 13 outings and the Suns have won nine of those games.

PHX (24-25).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR   GSW (22-28).........PLY%  USG   PCP  +/-   GR
nash,steve...........77%  18%  1.59  +12 26.8   ellis,monta..........98%  24%  0.96  -12 31.8
pietrus,mickael......39%  22%  1.56  - 9 17.1   curry,stephen........92%  23%  0.82  -12 17.6
hill,grant...........70%  23%  0.98  +13 15.0   williams,reggie......62%  17%  1.52  + 1 15.9
frye,channing........81%  16%  1.58  +12 13.7   lee,david............61%  24%  1.07  -22 10.6
carter,vince.........65%  22%  0.73  +16 10.3   wright,dorell........61%  24%  0.73  -11  9.9
dudley,jared.........58%  20%  1.11  + 4  9.7   udoh,epke............31%  17%  1.22  +13  5.7
lopez,robin..........31%  14%  1.05  +15  5.9   radmanovic,vladimir..51%  11%  0.58  - 1  2.3
gortat,marcin........43%  18%  1.07  - 5  4.4   biedrins,andris......35%   0% 53.28  -16  1.8
warrick,hakim........13%  31%  1.41  + 2  4.0   wright,brandan....... 9%  20%  0.97  + 0  1.2
dowdell,zabian.......23%  17%  0.98  + 0  2.4   bell,charlie.........(DNP)  
childress,josh.......(DNP)                      gadzuric,dan.........(DNP)  
siler,garret.........(DNP)                      lin,jeremy...........(DNP)  
PACE: 95.2          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%   PACE: 95.2          ORTG eFG%  oRB%  TO% FTA%
Suns.............  109.3 .511  .200 .147 .092   Warriors.........   96.7 .446  .304 .179 .120

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NEWS & MOVES

Minutiae from press releases around the league

NBA: The Miami Heat's LeBron James and the Oklahoma City Thunder's Kevin Durant were named the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for games played Jan. 31-Feb. 6.

NBA: Reigning champion Paul Pierce of the Boston Celtics will defend his title in this year's Foot Locker Three-Point Contest, which will be held on Saturday, Feb. 19, at Staples Center in Los Angeles as part of NBA All-Star Saturday Night. Rounding out the field are All-Stars Ray Allen of the Celtics and Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder, Daniel Gibson of the Cleveland Cavaliers, James Jones of the Miami Heat, and Dorell Wright of the Golden State Warriors. Allen won the contest in 2001.

SPURS: The San Antonio Spurs today announced they have signed forward Steve Novak from the Reno Bighorns of the NBA Development League to a 10-day contract. Novak is the eighth call-up of the 2010-11 D-League season. Novak, a 6-10 forward, has appeared in two games with the Bighorns, averaging 18.5 points and 6.5 rebounds in 29.5 minutes, while shooting .684 (13-19) from the field and .643 (9-14) from three-point range. Prior to joining the Bighorns, Novak appeared in seven games with the Dallas Mavericks, averaging 1.6 points in 2.6 minutes.

SPURS: The San Antonio Spurs today announced that they have assigned rookie James Anderson to the Austin Toros of the NBA Development League. This is Anderson's second assignment to the Toros this season while rehabbing from a stress fracture in the fifth metatarsal of his right foot which he was diagnosed with on November 11. Anderson, a 6-6, 215-pound guard, was originally assigned to Austin on January 26. He appeared in two games for the Toros, averaging 14.5 points and 2.0 rebounds in 14.0 minutes. He shot .556 (10-18) from the field, .444 (4-9) from three-point territory and .714 (5-7) from the free throw line. Anderson was recalled by the Spurs on January 29 and saw limited action in three games.

GRIZZLIES: The Memphis Grizzlies signed free agent guard Jason Williams, Grizzlies General Manager and Vice President of Basketball Operations Chris Wallace announced today. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed. Williams, who played four seasons in Memphis from 2001-05, is the franchise's all-time assists leader (2,041).

ROCKETS: Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey announced today that the team has recalled guard Ishmael Smith from Houston's single-affiliation NBA D-League partner Rio Grande Valley. Smith, who had been re-assigned to the Vipers on Feb. 1, is expected to join the Rockets for tonight's game in Denver. Smith (6-0, 175, Wake Forest) has averaged 12.5 points, 7.9 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 1.50 steals over eight games (five starts) in a pair of stints with the Vipers this season.

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ON TAP

Tonight in the NBA

WTC  VIS @ HOM,  GAMETIME     NBAPET LINE    OFFICIALS
+ 9  phi @ atl,  7:00 PM EST [ atl by  5 ]   S.Foster, M.Boland, J.Williams
+ 8  ind @ mia,  7:30 PM EST [ mia by 13 ]   B.Salvatore, D.Jones, E.Roe
+ 7  mem @ okc,  8:00 PM EST [ okc by  7 ]   B.Delaney, E.Lewis, H.Workman
  0  lac @ orl,  7:00 PM EST [ orl by 14 ]   B.Salvatore, D.Jones, E.Roe
- 2  sas @ det,  7:30 PM EST [ sas by 10 ]   B.Kennedy, B.Barnaky, K.Fehr
- 2  min @ hou,  8:30 PM EST [ hou by  8 ]   E.Malloy, C.Blair, S.Wall
- 5  tor @ mil,  8:00 PM EST [ mil by  7 ]   D.Stafford, N.Buchert, G.Zielinski
Note: WTC is a junk stat rating the "watchability" of a game, taking into
account the quality of the opponents and the likelihood of a close game.

Through Monday, 763 of 1,230 games (62.0 percent) have been played in the 2010-11 NBA regular season.

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GLOSSARY
+/- (Plus-Minus) Raw data is from official box scores from NBA.com.
GR (Game Rating) Reflects a player's Points Created total, or the portion of his team's offense for which he gets credit based on his box score line. This number is then adjusted for estimated defensive performance based on box score counterpart productivity. GR is pace-adjusted so you can compare players from game to game.
PCP (Points Created Per Possession Used) An estimate of each player's points created per possession used, a measure of offensive efficiency. The stat accounts for a player's entire box score line, not just the scoring categories.
PLY% (Play percentage) An estimate of the percentage of a team's possessions on which the player was on the court.
USG An estimate of how many of those plays a player used by shooting, going to the line or committing a turnover, with a portion the team's offensive rebound total subtracted.
TEAM STATS
PACE: Estimated possessions in the game.
ORTG: A team's points per 100 possessions.
eFG%: Team's shooting percentage with an extra half-point added for each made three-point field goal.
oRB%: Percentage of a team's misses that they retrieved off the offensive glass.
TO%: Percentage of a team's possessions resulting in a turnover.
FTA%: Percentage of a team's possessions resulting in a trip to the foul line.

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