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  • Woj: Nets expect Kyrie to miss rest of MIL series
    The Nets are preparing to be without guard Kyrie Irving (right ankle sprain) for the remainder of their second-round series with Milwaukee, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. 

    Advice: This news certainly not shocking, considering the Nets announced Monday that an MRI confirmed Irving was dealing with a sprained right ankle and was ruled out of Game 5. However, it's disheartening for Nets fans, as Brooklyn will have their hands full beating a healthy Bucks squad without the uber-talented Irving. Fortunately for the Nets, James Harden (hamstring) has been upgraded to questionable and reportedly plans to play Tuesday night vs. Milwaukee.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Today, 11:02 am
  • Report: Wiz to offer Beal an extension this summer
    The Wizards are expected to attempt to negotiate a new contract extension with Bradley Beal this offseason, according to Chase Hughes of NBC Sports.

    Advice: Beal will have the opportunity to sign an extension with the Wizards this summer worth roughly $182 million over four years. His other option would be waiting until the end of the upcoming 2021-22 season and declining his $37 million player option for the 2022-23 campaign, thus becoming an unrestricted free agent. At that point, he would be eligible to sign a 5-year deal worth $235 million with the Wizards or a four-year max contract with another team.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Today, 10:50 am
  • Draymond and Dame commit to play for Team USA
    Damian Lillard and Draymond Green are among the initial commitments to play for Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics this summer, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic. 

    Advice: Full rosters are expected to be finalized by late June, as training camp begins in Las Vegas in early July under head coach Gregg Popovich. Expect Lillard to get bombarded with questions about his future once he steps foot in front of reporters. The group stage of the tournament runs from July 25 to Aug. 1. The knockout stage will take place from Aug. 3 to Aug. 7. NBCSportsEDGE.com Today, 10:30 am
  • James Harden (hamstring) plans to play Tuesday
    James Harden (hamstring) has been upgraded to questionable and, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic, plans to play Tuesday night in Game 5 vs. Milwaukee, "barring a setback in pregame warmups."

    Advice: Harden was initially ruled out in Monday's injury report. However, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported Tuesday morning that Harden was "determined to try and find a way to get cleared to play" and would test his hamstring in shootaround. This afternoon, Woj tweeted that Harden "worked his hamstring through shootaround without an issue, and will do the same on the court prior to tip" tonight, as he's now "moved one step closer" to suiting up. We are headed towards a game-time decision, but it certainly seems Harden is committed to at least starting Game 5 and seeing how the hamstring responds. Yet, it's worth noting he lasted less than a minute in Game 1 before being forced to the locker room in pain. NBCSportsEDGE.com Today, 10:14 am
  • Kawhi Leonard on right knee: 'I'm good'
    When asked about his right knee after Game 4 Monday night, Kawhi Leonard said, "I'm good."

    Advice: Leonard tallied 31 points (on 9-of-19 shooting), seven rebounds, three assists, two steals, one block, and two turnovers in 34 minutes in the Clippers victory over Utah. However, with 5:25 remaining in the fourth quarter, Kawhi was fouled on a drive to the basket. Leonard grabbed at his right knee after the play and exited the contest with 4:35 remaining and did not return. "I'm good," Leonard said when asked about his knee. "Next question." Clipper coach Ty Lue said he believes Leonard will be good to go for Game 5 on Wednesday. "Yeah, I think so," Lue said. "Yeah, I think everybody is pretty good." NBCSportsEDGE.com Today, 8:39 am
  • Embiid not "able to jump" due to ailing knee
    Joel Embiid acknowledged that his ailing right knee significantly limited his effectiveness in Monday's Game 4 loss to the Hawks. 

    Advice: Embiid grabbed 21 rebounds Monday night, but struggled mightily on the offensive end, especially in the second half, when he missed all 11 FG's get attempted. His final miss occurred with fewer than ten seconds left in the fourth quarter, when he couldn't convert a lay-up. "Great look. Great look. I just didn't have the lift," Embiid, told reporters after the game. "Thought I got fouled too. But usually, I would go up, especially for a bucket like that, try to dunk it. Try to get fouled and get an and-1. But ... not being able to jump for obvious reasons. ... It's tough." NBCSportsEDGE.com Today, 7:56 am
  • Report: NY willing to give up 3 picks for Lillard
    The Knicks are "likely willing to include three first-round picks" in exchange for Damian Lillard, according to Marc Berman of the New York Post. 

    Advice: The night Denver eliminated the Blazers, Dame quoted lyrics from rapper Nipsey Hussle in an Instagram post: “How long should I stay dedicated? How long til opportunity meets preparation?” Earlier this month, ESPN's Stephen A. Smith said that “six or seven” teams have called the Blazers to inquire about potentially trading for Lillard, and that the Knicks were one of those teams. In Tuesday's Post report, Berman writes, "the Knicks, desperate for a point guard, believe they have assets and cap space to make a trade for a star such as Lillard." This is obviously a situation we'll keep an eye on all summer.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Today, 7:41 am
  • James Harden (hamstring) upgraded to doubtful
    The Nets have upgraded James Harden (hamstring) to doubtful for Tuesday's Game 5 vs. the Bucks, and Harden is "determined to try and find a way to get cleared to play," according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. 

    Advice: The Nets announced Monday that both Harden and Kyrie Irving (ankle) had been ruled out of Game 5. However, Wojnarowski reports this morning that Harden is expected to test his hamstring in shoot-around Tuesday morning. Woj adds that "there are no guarantees on his status but Harden is trying to play with series 2-2." And with that, things just got a bit more interesting. Check back later today, as we'll provide updates as soon as they are available.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Today, 6:54 am
  • Donovan Mitchell scores 37 as Jazz drop Game 4
    Donovan Mitchell poured in 37 points on 9-of-26 shooting (6-of-15 3-pointers) with five assists, five rebounds and one steal, but it wasn't enough as Utah fell 118-104 to the Clippers in Monday's Game 4.

    Advice: Entering Monday, many had to question the health of Donovan Mitchell after he injured his ankle in Saturday's Game 3. He silenced those critics in Game 4, as he tied Karl Malone for the most consecutive 30-point playoff games in Jazz history. Mitchell did take some tough falls where he came up gimpy, but for the most part, the ankle did not seem to bother Mitchell much at all. Unfortunately, that was the only bright spot that came out of Monday's loss as Utah did not get too much from anyone else. Bojan Bogdanovic chipped in 18 points on 6-of-12 shooting (2-of-5 3-pointers) with five assists and three rebounds. Joe Ingles scored an efficient 19 points on 7-of-9 shooting (5-of-7 3-pointers) with three rebounds and three assists. Utah will try to regain control of this series as they head home for Game 5 on Wednesday night in Utah. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 10:02 pm
  • Kawhi Leonard scores 31, Clippers tie series 2-2
    Kawhi Leonard scored 31 points on 9-of-19 shooting (3-of-7 3-pointers) to go with seven rebounds, three assists, two steals, one block, and two turnovers in 34 minutes to lead the Clippers to a 118-104 win over Utah and tie the series 2-2.

    Advice: "Oh, we're a different team," Clippers coach Tyronn Lue said when asked about the importance of Paul George getting going offensively. "We know that. It's been like that all season long," he continued.  The fact of the matter is that you know what you are getting out of Kawhi every night, but this team goes as PG-13 goes and that was again the case on Monday as George scored 31 points on 9-of-20 shooting (4-of-10 3-pointers) with nine rebounds and four assists. It also helped that Marcus Morris came out guns blazing scoring 22 of his 24 points in the first half. Morris shot 6-of-8 from the floor (5-of-5 3-pointers) in the first half alone on Monday. The 24 points were Morris's highest-scoring output of this postseason and his best since scoring 25 points in late April against Memphis. One thing worth noting is that Leonard tweaked his right knee with just over five minutes remaining in the game and was visibly in pain, grimacing and favoring the knee before exiting permanently with 4:35 remaining. We'll leave him off the injury report for now, but stay tuned for more updates. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 9:55 pm
  • Kevin Huerter starts for George Hill scores 10
    Nate McMillan inserted Kevin Huerter into the starting lineup for Solomon Hill on Monday, and Huerter chipped in 10 points on 4-of-10 shooting from the floor (2-of-5 from deep) with four rebounds and two assists in 35 minutes during a Game 4 win over the Sixers.

    Advice: The Hawks were in desperation mode on Monday night, trying to avoid falling into a 3-1 hole against the Sixers. After combining to shoot 32% from three (17-of-53) in Games 2 and 3, the Hawks needed a boost in the shooting department. In three starts this series, Solomon Hill tallied a total of 7 points on 2-of-11 shooting (2-of-10 3-pointers), so McMillan decided to pull the plug on Hill and go with Huerter who clearly is the better offensive option. Hill's DNP's could continue as the Hawks will attempt to win two of the next three games to return to the Eastern Conference finals for the first time since 2015. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 8:12 pm
  • Furman Korkmaz starts for Green, scores 10 points
    Furkan Korkmaz drew the start for Danny Green and scored 10 points on 4-of-9 shooting (2-of-5 3-pointers) with two rebounds, one assist, two blocks and one turnover as the Sixers lost 103-100 to the Hawks on Monday night.  

    Advice: "I don't think there's any better motivation than starting the game, because you know you need to set the tone with the starters and you need to be good," Korkmaz said. Korkmaz and the Sixers did start the game well, as they led by as much as ten in the first quarter, ending the period with a 28-20 lead, and entering the half with a 62-49 lead. Unfortunately, it ended there as the Hawks outscored the Sixers 54-38 in the second half. Tobias Harris led Philadelphia in scoring with 20 points on 8-of-15 shooting from the floor (2-of-3 3-pointers) and added five rebounds, and two assists in 39 minutes. Seth Curry scored 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting (3-of-6 3-pointers) and Ben Simmons flirted with a triple-double with 11 points, 12 rebounds, and nine assists in 36 minutes. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 7:58 pm
  • Joel Embiid grabs 21 rebounds, Sixers lose 102-100
    Joel Embiid scored 17 points on 4-of-20 shooting from the floor (8-of-8 free throws) and snatched 21 rebounds in 36 minutes in Monday night's 103-100 loss to Atlanta in Game 4.

    Advice: Embiid simply looked banged up on Monday night as his knee injury could finally be catching up to him. The most glaring example of this came on the Sixers second to last possession as Embiid missed a layup that would have given the Sixers a one-point lead. It was a play that Embiid would normally dunk, but he simply didn't have the same explosion getting off the ground. He also briefly went to the locker room in the second quarter to receive some medical attention, but soon returned to the bench. The big man also shot 0-of-12 from the floor in the second half, scoring just four points, all of which came from the free-throw line. Embiid's health will be the biggest thing to monitor over the next few days as this series has now turned into a best-of-3 with Game 5 looming from Philadelphia on Wednesday.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 7:38 pm
  • Trae Young dishes out 18 assists, Hawks tie series
    Trae Young scored 25 points on 8-of-26 shooting (3-of-11 3-pointers) and tallied a playoff career-high with 18 assists with four rebounds, one steal and two turnovers as the Hawks beat the Sixers 103-100 on Monday night to tie the series up at 2-2.

    Advice: The Hawks struggled from three in Games 2 and 3 and again had a sub-par performance from distance in Game 3. Atlanta shot 12-40 from three, but that was enough as the Hawks tallied 24 assists on 37 made field goals with a playoff career-high 18 of them coming from Young. Young set the table for John Collins and Clint Capela in pick-and-roll all night, while also finding Bogdan Bogdanovic and Kevin Huerter for threes on the perimeter. Collins had a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds while Bogdanovic scored 22 points on 9-of-24 shooting (4-of-13 3-pointers) and added four rebounds and two assists in 35 minutes. Game 5 is Wednesday in Philadelphia.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 7:34 pm
  • Bam Adebayo named to All-Defensive Second Team
    Bam Adebayo was named to the 2020-21 All-Defensive Second Team on Monday.

    Advice: Adebayo tied Jimmy Butler for the most first-place votes amongst the Second Team members, and he played a key role in helping Miami to a top-10 defensive rating this season. This is the second year in a row that Adebayo will be named to the All-Defensive Second Team, and he'll be joined by Butler, Joel Embiid, Matisse Thybulle and Kawhi Leonard. Notably missing from either All-Defensive team this season: Marcus Smart. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 4:29 pm
  • Ben Simmons: First Team, All-Defense
    Ben Simmons was named to the 2020-21 NBA's All-Defensive First Team on Monday.

    Advice: Simmons was a finalist for the Defensive Player of the Year award, and both he and Rudy Gobert were unanimous selections for the All-Defensive First Team this year. This is the second time in Simmons' career that he'll be earning the First Team, All-Defense distinction, and it'll be Gobert, Draymond Green, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jrue Holiday joining him on that list this season. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 4:16 pm
  • Simmons, Curry, Korkmaz, Harris, Embiid starting
    Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, Furkan Korkmaz, Tobia Harris and Joel Embiid will start vs. the Hawks in Game 4 on Monday.

    Advice: Embiid will continue to play through the knee issue, and Korkmaz will replace Danny Green (calf) in the starting unit. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 4:13 pm
  • Kevin Huerter starting; Hill to the bench
    Kevin Huerter will replace Solomon Hill in the starting unit for Monday's Game 4 matchup with Philly.

    Advice: Hill hasn't been doing much as a starter, and the Hawks are currently down 1-2 in this series, so Nate McMillan will switch up his starting unit. Joining Huerter amongst the starters tonight will be the usuals: Trae Young, Bogdan Bogdanovic, John Collins and Clin Capela. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 4:11 pm
  • James Harden (hamstring) won't play in Game 5
    James Harden (right hamstring) will not play in Game 5 vs. the Bucks on Tuesday.

    Advice: Harden did get in a workout on Monday, which suggests he didn't practice, and he'll be missing his fourth straight game tomorrow night. Expect Bruce Brown to get another start, with Kevin Durant running the show on offense. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 2:16 pm
  • Kyrie Irving (ankle) ruled out for Game 5
    An MRI confirmed a sprained right ankle for Kyrie Irving and he has been ruled out for Tuesday's Game 5 matchup with Milwaukee.

    Advice: Kevin Durant is going to be asked to shoulder quite a heavy load on offense tomorrow night, and we might see Mike James get the spot start with more minutes falling to guys like Landry Shamet and Bruce Brown. Steve Nash said that he's not going to rush James Harden (hamstring) back just because Irving is missing in action, but there's no denying that these two injuries have put Brooklyn in trouble, and Nash also acknowledged he has "no idea" if Irving will be able to return for this series. We might see a historic performance from KD on Tuesday. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 1:43 pm
  • Mike Conley (hamstring) ruled out for Game 4
    Mike Conley (right hamstring) has been ruled out for Game 4 vs. the Clippers on Monday.

    Advice: Conley hasn't played since tweaking his hamstring on June 2, and it's unclear if he'll be able to make it back during this series. The Jazz have looked competent without him, but they'll likely need him to get over the hump in a series with Los Angeles. For now, we'll be considering him questionable for Game 5 on Wednesday, and it'll again be Donovan Mitchell, Joe Ingles and Jordan Clarkson being asked to step it up in his absence. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 12:57 pm
  • Kyrie's injury won't impact Harden's timetable
    Nets coach Steve Nash said Kyrie Irving's ankle injury will not impact James Harden's potential return from his troublesome hamstring issue. 

    Advice: “I think it’s an independent case. I don’t want James to be rushed back,” Nash said. “If he’s able to play next game and the game after, that’s fantastic.” Prior to this update, Nash said Harden has a "gap to make up" before returning and that he wanted him to get in several full practices before clearance. Hopefully we get more clarity on both Harden and Kyrie on Monday afternoon. NBCSportsEDGE.com Yesterday, 7:36 am
  • Will Barton scores 25 as Nuggets eliminated by PHO
    Will Barton entered the starting lineup for Game 4 on Sunday, finishing with 25 points, five rebounds, two dimes, two steals and three 3-pointers in 39 minutes of a season-ending 125-118 loss.

    Advice: Michael Malone tweaked his approach by placing Barton and Monte Morris (19 points, six assists in 35 minutes) in the starting lineup in favor of Facundo Campazzo and Austin Rivers, but unfortunately for Denver, they were not able to avoid a sweep and are now officially eliminated from championship contention. Barton tried to put the team on his back late after Nikola Jokic got ejected for a Flagrant 2 in the third quarter, but it just wasn’t enough against this incredible Phoenix team. Michael Porter Jr. played well with 20 points, three steals and three triples, while Campazzo sank four of his seven three-point attempts off the bench for 14 points and a dime in 20 minutes. NBCSportsEDGE.com Sunday, 7:45 pm
  • Mike Conley questionable for Monday's Game 4
    Mike Conley (hamstring) is listed as questionable for Monday's Game 4 against the Clippers in L.A. 

    Advice: Conley has yet to play in this series and the Clippers looked very good in Game 3 when they won 132-106 to get back into it. In short, the Jazz could really use Conley's help. If he's able to play, Joe Ingles would likely see his role reduced slightly, while Jordan Clarkson might also take a small hit in that scenario.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Sunday, 5:00 pm
  • Kyrie Irving leaves arena on crutches with boot
    Kyrie Irving left the arena on crutches and with his right foot in a walking boot after being injured in Sunday's game. 

    Advice: X-rays were negative and he'll likely have an MRI once the team is back home in Brooklyn. Regardless of what the MRI says, it's hard to imagine seeing Irving being healthy enough to play in Tuesday's Game 5 and his entire playoffs are likely in jeopardy. Mike James and Bruce Brown are going to have to step up in Game 5, especially if James Harden can't go. NBCSportsEDGE.com Sunday, 4:39 pm
  • Kyrie Irving's X-rays negative, iffy for Game 5
    X-rays were negative on Kyrie Irving's right ankle injury and he'll be questionable for Tuesday's Game 5 in Brooklyn. 

    Advice: Irving turned his ankle badly after landing on the foot of Giannis Antetokounmpo and it will be mildly surprising if he is able to play in Game 5. Mike James started the second half over Irving and could be a key player on Tuesday if Irving is out again. James finished with five points and one assist on 2-of-6 shooting on Sunday. NBCSportsEDGE.com Sunday, 3:13 pm
  • Will Barton, Monte Morris to start for Nuggets
    Will Barton and Monte Morris will move into the starting lineup for the Nuggets on Sunday, sending Facundo Campazzo and Austin Rivers to the bench. 

    Advice: The Nuggets have simply been manhandled by the Suns thus far and find themselves in an 0-3 hole without Jamal Murray. Campazzo and Rivers were pretty quiet in Game 3, although the Nuggets just haven't looked great in this entire series. Whether a minutes-restricted Barton and Morris can provide a spark for the Nuggets remains to be seen, but given the way the series has gone thus far, it's not surprising that Michael Malone is shaking things up.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Sunday, 2:57 pm
  • Irving (ankle) out; Mike James starts second half
    Kyrie Irving (right ankle sprain) has been ruled out for the remainder of Sunday's Game 4 vs. Milwaukee.

    Advice: Irving couldn't put much pressure on his right leg as he limped back to the locker room, so it's not surprising to see him ruled out for the remainder of the game, and it was Mike James who started the second half with Irving unavailable. If Kyrie needs to skip Game 5 on Tuesday, then Kevin Durant will be asked to shoulder a heavy load on offense while guys like James, Landry Shamet and Bruce Brown will be asked to step up. Stay tuned. NBCSportsEDGE.com Sunday, 1:14 pm
  • Kyrie Irving (right ankle) headed to locker room
    Kyrie Irving (right ankle) is headed back to the locker room.

    Advice: Irving landed on Giannis Antetokounmpo's foot following a shot attempt and he rolled his right ankle pretty good. He was down in a good amount of pain and didn't run back on defense, prompting Brooklyn to call a timeout in order to get him out of the game. After staying down for a bit, he slowly limped his way back to the locker room under his own power, and for now, we'll be considering him questionable to return. NBCSportsEDGE.com Sunday, 1:11 pm
  • Nash: Harden still has "a gap to make up"
    Nets head coach Steve Nash said that James Harden must string together multiple "high-intensity loads" on consecutive days before he will be cleared to return to the lineup, per Brian Lewis of the New York Post.

    Advice: Nash said that Harden is doing on-court work, shooting and working through his rehab but that he still has "a gap to make up" according to Malika Andrews of ESPN. With each game the remainder of the series coming after just one day of rest, should Milwaukee make this a long series, best case scenario still says that Harden will likely miss at least Game 5 and depending on the progression of his rehab, possibly a Game 6 on Thursday, should the series go that long. For Brooklyn, the earlier they can wrap this series up, the better.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Sunday, 10:50 am
  • Donovan Mitchell says he will be good to go Game 4
    Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell (ankle) says "I'll be ready for Game 4" against the Clippers on Monday night.  

    Advice: “I’m good. That’s all I got for you. I’m good. The situation happened. I felt like I was good to come back, but no need to risk it down 18. Time to rest up and get ready for the next game.” Mitchell said that landing is the issue for him and that he has been trying to manage it but he assured that he will be on the court on Monday. What has not been determined yet is the status of Mike Conley who missed his third straight game on Saturday. The Clippers have now made this series a lot more interesting as they now trail 2-1 with a home game pending to potentially tie the series and the health of the Utah backcourt in question.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Sunday, 8:34 am
  • Donovan Mitchell scores 30, hurts ankle late
    Donovan Mitchell scored a team-high 30 points in a Game 3 loss to the Clippers on Saturday, also chipping in five rebounds, four assists, two steals, five 3-pointers and two turnovers to make the series a 2-1 count in favor of Utah.

    Advice: The big story here is that he appeared to tweak his ankle in the fourth quarter, limping to the locker room and not returning to the game. Per Jazz PR, he was in fact available to return, but the coaching staff decided not to let him back in, and he’ll almost definitely pop up on the next Utah injury report. Despite not playing down the stretch, Mitchell’s five triples tonight made it four straight playoff games with at least that many, joining only Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson to accomplish such a feat. Joe Ingles started hot and finished with 19 points and five triples, Rudy Gobert had an underwhelming 12-point, 10-board double-double and Jordan Clarkson had 14 off the bench with four 3-pointers. We’ll see if the Clippers get things done again in Monday’s Game 4 to even the series, or if the Jazz pull ahead to take a commanding 3-1 lead. NBCSportsEDGE.com Saturday, 8:08 pm
  • Mike Conley (hamstring) out for Saturday's Game 3
    The Utah Jazz say Mike Conley (mild right hamstring strain) is out for Saturday's Game 3 against the Clippers.

    Advice: Conley has missed the last two games and will now miss a third consecutive on Saturday evening. With the Jazz holding a commanding 2-0 lead over the Clippers, even if Conley could give it a go, there is no need in risking it at this time in the series. There also has been no word on Conley even returning to practice yet, so it is safe to say, this could not be the last game that he misses. In his absence, Joe Ingles will likely start for Conley again. Ingles is coming off a solid performance in Game 2, where he scored 19 points on 7-of-10 shooting (4-of-7 3-pointers) with four rebounds, four assists, one steal and two turnovers in 33 minutes of action. NBCSportsEDGE.com Saturday, 11:46 am
  • Trae Young scores 28 points in loss to Philly
    Trae Young's 28 points wasn't enough in Friday's Game 3 loss to Philly, adding eight assists, two steals and three triples. 

    Advice: Young has been sensational in the playoffs so credit to Philly for keeping him in check. Yes, holding Trae to 28 points is considered a win these days. "Trae Young going downhill is not good for any team, and he did that too much [in Games 1 and 2]" 76ers coach Doc Rivers said earlier in the week. "So we have to slide him off a little bit. That's not really being more physical. That's just body position."  Look for Trae to make some adjustments in Game 4 as his Hawks attempt to even the series. NBCSportsEDGE.com Friday, 7:22 pm
  • Joel Embiid scores 27 points in Game 3 win
    Joel Embiid dominated Game 3 with 27 points, nine rebounds, eight assists, one steal, three blocks and one triple in Friday's 127-111 Game 3 win over Atlanta. 

    Advice: Coach Doc Rivers said before the game that Embiid was “feeling great” despite the questionable tag he was carrying, and while he isn’t close to 100 percent, he has still been dominant and the 76ers are feeding him in the post at will. In fact, his usage rate of 39.9% through the first two games was his highest for any of the seven playoff series he’s played in according to NBA.com’s John Schuhmann. He did have another scare to his left knee this evening (the good one), but despite hobbling around a bit, he remained in the game and seemed fine. Philly is back in the driver’s seat ahead of Game 4 with a 2-1 lead. NBCSportsEDGE.com Friday, 7:19 pm
  • Mike Conley gets another questionable tag
    Mike Conley (hamstring) is questionable for Game 3 on Saturday.

    Advice: This will be his third questionable tag in a row but nothing has changed as far as we know. Until we hear that Mitchell has returned to practice, he's likely closer to doubtful. Plus, the Jazz may be a little more cautious with a commanding 2-0 series lead.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Friday, 5:08 pm
  • Joel Embiid expected to play in Game 3
    Barring a setback in warmups, Joel Embiid (knee) will play in Game 3 vs. Atlanta. 

    Advice: Coach Doc Rivers said Embiid "feels great" but added that he's likely going to be day-to-day the rest of the playoffs. Despite the possibility of more questionable tags, we expect the superstar to stay in the lineup.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Friday, 3:13 pm
  • Wiz GM not looking to make 'wholesale changes'
    Wizards General Manager Tommy Sheppard said he is "not looking to make wholesale changes” this offseason. 

    Advice: The first decision Sheppard has to make this summer is whether or not to bring back head coach Scott Brooks. Sheppard has said that's a choice that "will not be rushed." As far as the team's own free agents, Robin Lopez, Ish Smith, Raul Neto, and Garrison Mathews are all set to hit the open market. “I’m not looking to make wholesale changes,” Sheppard said. “But we’ve got to do is take what you have and make it better and add pieces in. I think we did that. I keep coming back to what Robin was able to do, what Neto was able to do, what Russell was able to do. Those are three guys that made a big impact that weren’t with us a year ago. And I think Deni is on track to be an impact player in the future. We saw the growth of Rui this year. Those things just happened in the course from a year ago.” NBCSportsEDGE.com Friday, 11:38 am
  • Embiid (right knee) still questionable for Game 3
    Joel Embiid (right knee) remains listed as questionable for Game 3 Friday night vs. the Hawks. 

    Advice: Embiid was listed as questionable in the lead-up to Game 2 as well, but went out and poured in 40 points to lead the Sixers to a much-needed victory. "Obviously, the pain is going to be there," Embiid told reporters after the contest. "That's normal. But it's all about managing it, doing whatever it takes to win. Because my goal is to win the championship. I'm going to put my body on the line to make sure that happens. I'm going to give everything I got." We can expect confirmation of his status this evening.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Friday, 10:46 am
  • Donovan Mitchell says his ankle feels 'fine'
    Donovan Mitchell told reporters that his ankle feels "fine" after it was hit in the final minute of Game 2 Thursday night. 

    Advice: Mitchell remained red hot in Game 2, tallying 37 points, three rebounds, four assists, six triples and three turnovers in 39 minutes. However, with just 12 seconds left in the fourth quarter, Mitchell looked to be in significant pain as he grabbed the right ankle that he sprained several weeks ago. However, speaking with the media after the game, Mitchell said: "I got hit and it hurt, but I'm fine now. I walked in here. If you want me to sprint for you, I can. I'm good. You know, s--- happens. Thankfully, it wasn't bad. Move on and get ready for Game 3." Over Utah's past 13 playoff games, dating back to their first-round series vs. Denver in the bubble last year, Micthell is averaging 34.6 points, 5.1 assists, 4.1 rebounds and 4.5 made 3-pointers, while shooting 50.7% from the floor, 46.8% from downtown and 91.9% on FT's. NBCSportsEDGE.com Friday, 7:15 am
  • Donovan Mitchell powers Jazz to win with 37 points
    Donovan Mitchell powered the Jazz to a 117-111 Game 2 win over the Clippers on Thursday with 37 points, three rebounds, four assists, six triples and three turnovers in 39 minutes.

    Advice: Mitchell was locked in from the jump, drilling his first four buckets and dropping in a quick 14 points in his first eight minutes of play. He did tweak his right ankle during the first half, but he played through it and finished the game on 15-of-29 shooting, so it didn’t seem to affect him all that much. The Clippers have had zero answers for Spida in Games 1 and 2, and if they can’t figure out how to at least contain him, this could turn out to be a rather short series; despite Utah missing Mike Conley. NBCSportsEDGE.com Thursday, 10:12 pm
  • Kyrie Irving needs 22 shots to score 22 points
    Kyrie Irving scored 22 points on 9-of-22 shooting in Thursday's Game 3 loss to the Bucks, adding five rebounds, one assist, two triples and three steals over 45 minutes.

    Advice: Both Kyrie and Kevin Durant struggled offensively throughout the game, with the superstar duo combining to go 20-of-50 from the floor, and while Irving didn’t commit any turnovers — KD coughed up the rock four times. Despite the Brooklyn stars struggling, the Nets only lost this one by three points, and Durant nearly sent the game to overtime with a shot at the buzzer that just happened to rim out. Durant finished with 30 points, 11 rebounds, five assists, three triples, four steals and one block in the loss. NBCSportsEDGE.com Thursday, 7:12 pm
  • Joel Embiid listed as questionable for Game 3
    Joel Embiid (right knee) is being listed as questionable for Game 3 vs. the Hawks.

    Advice: We'd be shocked if he didn't play, but we probably won't get official confirmation on his status until just prior to tip-off. NBCSportsEDGE.com Thursday, 2:54 pm
  • Mike Conley (right hamstring) will sit out Game 2
    Mike Conley (strained right hamstring) has been ruled out for Thursday's game against the Clippers.

    Advice: Conley, who was injured during Utah's series-clinching win over the Grizzlies, will sit for a second consecutive game. Joe Ingles will once again fill the resulting void alongside Donovan Mitchell. This news also impacts Mitchell's usage, as he stands to have the ball in his hands even more when it comes to initiating offense for both himself and his teammates.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Thursday, 10:31 am
  • Will Barton (hamstring) scores 10 in 16 minutes
    Will Barton returned from his hamstring injury on Wednesday and hit 4-of-8 shots and a couple 3-pointers for 10 points, one rebound and three assists in 16 minutes of a 123-98 blowout loss to the Suns in Game 2. 

    Advice: We last saw him on April 23 when he lasted just one minute before injuring his hamstring and while the Nuggets are excited to have him back, he made no impact in tonight's blowout loss. He's going to be on a tight minutes watch until further notice and he might only have a couple more opportunities to play if the Nuggets don't get something figured out quickly for Games 3 and 4 in Denver.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Wednesday, 8:58 pm
  • Will Barton (hamstring) active for Game 2
    Will Barton (hamstring) is active for the Nuggets on Wednesday and expected to play in Game 2 against the Suns. 

    Advice: We haven't seen him in action since April and while the Nuggets need him to play a big role as soon as possible, he's expected to be on a very tight minutes restriction tonight. In any case, it will be nice to see him back on the floor and the Nuggets will just be hoping that he doesn't aggravate the injury.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Wednesday, 5:31 pm
  • Will Barton's (hamstring) status still up in air
    While the Nuggets are hoping Will Barton will return to action Wednesday night from his hamstring injury, it's not a guarantee that he'll be able to play in Game 2. 

    Advice: It's "kind of up in the air," coach Michael Malone said in pre-game. The team will wait and see how he feels after pre-game warmups and then make the call. If Barton does play, he will be on a very tight minutes restriction so he's not an ideal fantasy candidate either way.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Wednesday, 5:03 pm
  • Mike Conley gets questionable tag for Game 2
    Mike Conley (hamstring) is questionable for Game 2 vs. the Clippers on Thursday. 

    Advice: Conley was also listed as questionable for Game 1 before getting ruled out, and we don't have anything else to work with in terms of his progress. The last real update we had is that Conley was a partial participant in practice. Joe Ingles and Jordan Clarkson will continue to see increased usage for as long as Conley remains out.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Wednesday, 4:00 pm
  • Will Barton (hamstring) is expected to play
    Will Barton (hamstring) is expected to return for Game 2 vs. the Suns on Wednesday. 

    Advice: Barton has been out since April, but barring a setback in warmups, look for him to return this evening. It will be interesting to see how quickly he can find his rhythm and we'd expect some type of restrictions, so he's a risky option in fantasy formats.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Wednesday, 1:09 pm
  • James Harden, Jeff Green out for Thursday's Game 3
    James Harden (right hamstring) and Jeff Green (left foot) have both been ruled out for Thursday's Game 3 against the Milwaukee Bucks, per Malika Andrews of ESPN.

    Advice: Nets head coach Steve Nash said that both Harden and Green are "progressing nicely" as they both rehab from injuries. Both Nash and Green hinted that he could possibly return as early as Sunday's Game 4, but when asked about Harden, Nash had this to say: "He's progressing well... So we're optimistic that we can have him back at some point." Harden reportedly wants to "be back ASAP" but the Nets are trying to balance their desire to have the former league MVP back, while also protecting him from any type of long-term injury. Harden missed 18 games in the regular season with a right hamstring strain and two additional games with right hamstring tightness. Green on the other hand says he has dealt with plantar fascia issues all season long, but after landing awkwardly after catching a lob in Game 2 of the Nets' first-round series against the Celtics, Green has had pain in the foot and has yet to return to practice since the injury.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Wednesday, 11:38 am
  • Will Barton (hamstring) doubtful to play Wednesday
    Will Barton (hamstring) has been listed as doubtful to play Wednesday night against the Suns.

    Advice: Barton has been listed as "out" on every injury report since injuring the hamstring in late April so the upgrade is certainly encouraging. Nuggets coach, Mike Malone even stated that Barton had "another really good day" in practice on Tuesday and that he was hopeful that Barton would be able to play on Wednesday. If Barton does not go in Game 2, all signs are indicating that we should see him at some point in this series, with the next opportunity being Friday's Game 3 in Denver.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Wednesday, 10:31 am
  • Kawhi Leonard puts up 23 & 7, Clippers drop Game 1
    Kawhi Leonard scored 23 points on 9-of-19 shooting (1-of-4 3-pointers) and added 7 rebounds, three assists and one steal with zero turnovers in Tuesday's Game 1 loss to Utah.  

    Advice: The Clippers finished the regular season shooting 41.3 percent from the three-point line, which led the league and was the fourth-best percentage all-time in a regular season.  Unfortunately for the Clippers, they shot 16-42 from three on Tuesday, good for 38.1%, but didn't make the timely ones down the stretch and even had a 3-pointer blocked at the buzzer to seal their fate. Paul George had an ugly 20 points and 10 rebounds, as he shot 4-of-17 from the floor (3-of-8 3-pointers) and had just two assists with two turnovers in 37 minutes. Leonard and George are also known as two of the best wing defenders in the NBA, and they will have to figure out a way to slow down Donovan Mitchell in Game 2 and for the rest of the series. NBCSportsEDGE.com Tuesday, 10:15 pm
  • Donovan Mitchell's 45 leads Jazz to 1-0 lead
    Donovan Mitchell torched the Clippers to the tune of 45 points on 16-of-30 shooting from the floor (6-of-15 3-pointers) and added five assists, three rebounds, one steal, one block and three turnovers to lead the Jazz to a 112-109 win over the Clippers in Tuesday's Game 1.  

    Advice: The Jazz are now 5-0 this postseason with Mitchell in the lineup, and even without starting point guard Mike Conley, Utah was able to defeat a hot Clippers team on Tuesday night. Entering this second-round series, Mitchell boasted the third-highest playoff points-per-game average among active players with 27.5 points per game (minimum 25 games played). That trails only LeBron James and Kevin Durant and is a shade over Anthony Davis who sits at 27.3 points per game. That is some great company to be in for the 4th-year guard out of Louisville. After trailing by 13 at the half, Mitchell came out and opened the second half on a 10-2 run by himself to cut into the Clipper lead and from that point on he and the Jazz never looked back. Spida and the Jazz will look to take a 2-0 lead on Thursday from Utah. NBCSportsEDGE.com Tuesday, 8:05 pm
  • Kevin Huerter sets playoff career high in loss
    Kevin Huerter set a new playoff career-high of 20 points on 8-of-10 shooting from the floor (3-of-5 3-pointers) with two rebounds, two assists, two blocks and four turnovers in 36 minutes of Tuesday night's 118-102 loss to the Sixers.

    Advice: Huerter scored 15 of his 20 points in the first half, as he and Danilo Gallinari combined for 30 points off the bench in the first half, as the hawks trimmed an 18-point deficit to two. Gallinari finished with 21 points on 7-of-15 shooting (5-of-9 3-pointers) to go with nine rebounds and two assists in 26 minutes. Gallinari was matched in scoring by Trae Young who also finished with 21 points on 6-of-16 shooting (1-of-7 3-pointers) and also added 11 assists, three rebounds, one steal and four turnovers in 38 minutes. After making 20 3-pointers at a 51.2 percent clip in Game 1, Atlanta made just 11 triples at a 36.7 percent clip in Tuesday's Game 2. The Hawks will try to get back on track on Friday with the series tied 1-1.   NBCSportsEDGE.com Tuesday, 7:27 pm
  • Joel Embiid's 40 and 13 leads Sixers to Game 2 win
    Joel Embiid went for 40 points on 13-of-25 shooting (12-of-16 free throws) with 13 rebounds, two assists, two steals, one block and three turnovers as the Sixers beat the Hawks 118-102 in Tuesday's Game 2 to tie the series at 1-1.  

    Advice: "Obviously, the pain is going to be there," Embiid said. "That's normal. But it's all about managing it, doing whatever it takes to win. Because my goal is to win the championship. I'm going to put my body on the line to make sure that happens. I'm going to give everything I got." Embiid did just that on Tuesday night, and through two games since returning from his brief absence, Embiid is averaging 39.5 points, 11.0 rebounds, and 3.0 assists in two games against the Hawks. Embiid also had some extra motivation on Tuesday evening as hours before, he finished second in MVP voting to Denver's Nikola Jokic. The series now shifts to Atlanta tied at one apiece. Game 3 will take place on Friday evening.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Tuesday, 7:23 pm
  • Malone: Will Barton (Hamstring) could play Game 2
    Will Barton (right hamstring) is "a candidate to play" Wednesday night's Game 2, per Nuggets head coach Mike Malone on Tuesday.

    Advice: Malone said that Barton "another really good day" in practice on Tuesday, and is hopeful that he could be available for Wednesday night's Game 2 in Phoenix. Barton has not played since injuring the hamstring in late April. but has been trending towards getting back in the lineup in recent weeks. Should Barton be able to go, he will provide even more depth to what is already one of the deepest teams in the NBA. Malone also said that Michael Porter Jr. (back) will be "good to go" for Game 2. NBCSportsEDGE.com Tuesday, 5:37 pm
  • Joel Embiid (knee) will play in Game 2 on Thursday
    Joel Embiid (right knee) will play and start in Game 2 of the Eastern semifinals against the Hawks on Tuesday evening.

    Advice: He was questionable prior, and he’s clearly not 100% by any means given both this lingering tag and a few plays in Game 1 where his knee appeared to bother him. Barring any setback, however, he should continue to log heavy minutes against a scorching Hawks team, and after what was almost one of the most incredible comebacks in playoff history in Game 1, the 76ers will look to even things up before heading to Atlanta for Games 3 and 4.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Tuesday, 2:45 pm
  • Mike Conley (hamstring) ruled out of Game 1 Tues
    Mike Conley (right hamstring strain) has been ruled out of Game 1 vs. the Clippers Tuesday night  

    Advice: Conley's right hamstring has been bothering him all season and he re-injured it in Utah's Game 5 victory last Wednesday. The Jazz have diagnosed it as a "mild hamstring strain," and he wasn't able to get in a full practice on Monday. This is a significant loss for Utah, as Conley was playing at a very high level this season when healthy and in the first round of playoffs, averaging 17.4 points, 8.6 assists and 3.8 rebounds per game in the postseason. Joe Ingles will likely slide into the starting lineup. Jordan Clarkson will also soak up extra minutes off the Utah bench.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Tuesday, 10:32 am
  • Dame offers 'no comment' to questions about future
    When asked if he was "still whole-heartedly on board" with the Blazers, Damian Lillard replied, “I have no comments about anything,” according to Jason Quick of The Athletic. 

    Advice: Quick, a respected and plugged-in Portland-based reporter, writes that the uncertainty regarding Lillard's future has created tension in-and-around the franchise. Quick also states that Dame publically calling for Portland to hire Jason Kidd as the team's new head coach "was a failed power move by Lillard’s camp but one that figures to be remembered down the road."  NBCSportsEDGE.com Tuesday, 10:21 am
  • Mike Conley (hamstring) questionable for Game 1
    Mike Conley (right hamstring) is being listed as questionable for Game 1 vs. the Clippers on Tuesday.

    Advice: Conley was able to get through some of Monday's practice, but it wouldn't be shocking to see him skip Game 1. We might get another update after tomorrow's shootaround, but he'll likely be a game-time call. If Conley can't give it a go, look for Joe Ingles to get the start. NBCSportsEDGE.com Monday, 4:06 pm
  • Nets hopeful James Harden can return vs. MIL
    The Nets are reportedly hopeful that James Harden (tight right hamstring) can return at some point during Brooklyn's Second Round series vs. Milwaukee.

    Advice: Harden won't play in Game 2 on Monday, and Brooklyn has been vague with the updates, but the good news is that he's currently being listed as "day-to-day." It sounds like there's a chance Harden might not be done for the postseason, but while he's out, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant will do the heavy lifting on offense with Joe Harris and Landry Shamet seeing some increased opportunity. NBCSportsEDGE.com Monday, 3:32 pm
  • Joel Embiid (right knee) questionable for Game 2
    Joel Embiid (right knee) is being listed as questionable for Game 2 vs. the Hawks on Tuesday.

    Advice: Embiid logged 38 minutes in Game 1 on Sunday, and Doc Rivers said he "looked good" at Monday's walkaround, but Rivers also acknowledged that they're "not out of the wood's yet" with Embiid's knee injury and that he'll likely be evaluated ahead of every game moving forward. We're expecting Embiid to be out there, but this knee issue will likely be ongoing for the remainder of the postseason. NBCSportsEDGE.com Monday, 2:36 pm
  • Mike Conley goes through partial practice
    Mike Conley (hamstring) participated in "portions" of Monday's practice. 

    Advice: That's the extent of the update from the Jazz, but they will announce his status for Game 1 later this afternoon. He was diagnosed with a "mild" hamstring strain, but like we saw with James Harden, the Jazz will need to tread carefully.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Jun 7, 11:43 am
  • Kawhi Leonard nearly trip-dubs, LA defeats DAL
    Kawhi Leonard had a full line in a Game 7 victory against the Mavs, notching 28 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists, four steals, one block and no turnovers to advance to the West semifinals vs. Utah.

    Advice: People are quick to forget that the Clippers were down 0-2 in this series and were victims of a 30-11 Dallas start in Game 3, but Kawhi was too much to handle the rest of the series. He was just an assist shy of his first career playoff triple-double, and if he’s this locked in against Utah, the best regular-season team in the NBA this year will have their work cut out for them. Fellow two-way stud Paul George had a nice line of his own with 22 points, six rebounds, 10 assists, three steals and four turnovers, while Terance Mann and Luke Kennard had 13 and 11 points off the bench, respectively, to contribute in the 27-6 bench scoring discrepancy. NBCSportsEDGE.com Jun 6, 3:28 pm
  • James Harden (hamstring) ruled out for Game 2
    James Harden (hamstring) has been ruled out for Monday's Game 2 against the Bucks. 

    Advice: This isn't all that surprising and the Nets have to just hope he'll be available at some point during the series. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant will once again have to carry the load in hopes of going up 2-0 in the series.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Jun 6, 1:39 pm
  • Trae Young leads Hawks to Game 1 win at Philly
    Trae Young hit 11-of-23 shots, four 3-pointers and 9-of-9 free throws for 35 points, 10 assists and two steals in Sunday's thrilling 128-124 Game 1 win over the Sixers in Philadelphia. 

    Advice: Trae becomes the second player in history to score at least 30 points in his first four road playoff games, joining the Bucks' Lew Alcindor, who became Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. The Hawks blew a massive lead and the Sixers fought their way back into the game late with great defense, some shaky officiating and some big plays. But the Hawks were able to hold them off in the end, even without De'Andre Hunter (knee). John Collins had 21 points, three 3-pointers, two steals and four rebounds, Clint Capela double-doubled with 11 points, 10 boards, a steal and a block, Bogdan Bogdanovic had 21 points, four rebounds and five assists, and Kevin Huerter added 15 points and three 3-pointers and the Hawks stole home-court advantage on Sunday.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Jun 6, 12:45 pm
  • Report: "No indication" POR willing to trade Dame
    Neil Olshey, the Blazers president of basketball operations, has given rival teams "no indication that he’s willing to trade Damian Lillard," according to NBA reporter Jabari Young of CNBC. 

    Advice: ESPN's Stephen A. Smith said earlier this week that “six or seven” teams have called the Blazers to inquire about Lillard's availability after Portland was bounced out of the first round. According to Young's report, "Lillard told CNBC that he’s expected to wait to see what the Blazers do this off-season before deciding his future." Dame's decision whether or not to demand a trade will obviously be one of the main storylines throughout the offseason.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Jun 6, 7:59 am
  • Nash says he is "heartbroken" for James Harden
    Nets coach Steve Nash told reporters he is "heartbroken" for James Harden, who injured his hamstring in Game 1 Saturday night. 

    Advice: Harden suffered a right hamstring injury in the first minute of the first quarter of Game 1 and was ruled out for the rest of the contest.  We are still awaiting the results of an MRI Harden took afterward. "I don't know what's going to happen. I don't know if he's playing the next game, if he's out," Nash said Saturday night. "I have no idea. But I'm heartbroken for him that he had to miss tonight." ESPN reporter Jordan Schultz tweeted that the Nets "won’t risk long-term health issues" with Harden, "after the Lakers drew criticism" for playing a hobbled Anthony Davis in Game 6 earlier this week.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Jun 6, 7:47 am
  • James Harden (hamstring) will not return to Game 1
    James Harden suffered a right hamstring injury and will not return to Saturday’s Game 1 against the Nets, per Shams Charania on Twitter

    Advice: This is a brutal blow for Brooklyn and this just means that Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving will have to do some more heavy lifting, but no one can say quite yet if Harden’s absence will be longer than just this game. Even worse, this was the same hamstring that kept Harden out for much of the second half of the regular season, so maybe it lingered even longer than expected (as hamstrings tend to do). Per Jared Greenberg on the TNT broadcast, The Beard left the arena immediately to get an MRI on the hamstring as well. Mike James entered the game for him and may get more run than expected. NBCSportsEDGE.com Jun 5, 5:07 pm
  • Report: Multiple teams tracking Damian Lillard
    According to multiple reports, teams are tracking Damian Lillard's situation in Portland following the team's decision to fire Terry Stotts. 

    Advice: Even though Lillard has made it emphatically clear on multiple occasions that he's fully committed to Portland, that hasn't kept trade rumors from circulating. ESPN's Stephen A. Smith said on Friday that "six or seven" teams had already reached out to the Blazers in order to inquire about Lillard, with that list reportedly including the Knicks, Heat and Clippers. Given Portland's lack of postseason success, it's expected that the team will look to make changes to its roster this offseason. However, while Lillard is the team's best draft "asset" at this point, it's difficult to envision a scenario in which he's moved.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Jun 5, 9:22 am
  • Lillard says he likes Kidd, Billups as HC options
    Damian Lillard told The Athletic that he likes Lakers assistant Jason Kidd and Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups as possible head coaching options for the Blazers. 

    Advice: On Friday the Blazers announced that they would be parting ways with Terry Stotts after nine seasons, a move that comes as no surprise given the team's lack of recent playoff success. It should also come as no surprise that Lillard, Portland's franchise player, will be an important figure in the team's search for a new head coach. While he did say that he likes both Kidd and Billups as potential fits, it's also worth noting that a source close to Lillard told The Athletic that the All-Star point guard "prefers Kidd because of his previous head coaching experience in Brooklyn and Milwaukee, and his background as an Oakland point guard." At this point in the process, it appears that either Kidd or Billups, who is viewed as an intriguing figure by Portland's front office, will be the team's next head coach. But it's still early.  NBCSportsEDGE.com Jun 5, 7:01 am
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