OAKLAND, Calif. -- One after another, teams trotted into rowdy Oracle Arena the past two months confident they could cool off the NBA's hottest team on their home floor.
It took 113 points, 53 minutes and one big shot from a former MVP to finally make it happen.
Derrick Rose hit a step-back jumper with 7 seconds remaining in overtime, and the Chicago Bulls ended Golden State's franchise-record 19-game home winning streak with a thrilling 113-111 victory over the Warriors on Tuesday night.
"Anybody can get momentum or anybody can get the feeling they can beat anybody when you beat a team like this," Rose said.
Rose, looking as healthy as ever, dribbled to his left and created space to get off the 20-footer over Klay Thompson, skipping around the court after the Warriors called timeout. Rose finished with 30 points, and his final basket overshadowed a night when he committed a career-high 11 turnovers and made just 13 of 33 shots.
Thompson misfired a wide-open runner off the glass as time expired.
"We feel comfortable with Derrick taking responsibility in those moments," Bulls big man Pau Gasol said. "He definitely doesn't hide and he's very aggressive."
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Rose joined Jason Kidd as the only players in NBA history to miss at least 20 shots and have 10 or more turnovers in a game.
The Warriors forced overtime on Draymond Green's tying tip-in with 1.4 seconds left and looked ready to recreate their unbeatable spark in front of a sellout crowd of 19,596. But they couldn't do enough to slow down a rejuvenated Rose, and Chicago's frontcourt overwhelmed the Warriors inside with center Andrew Bogut a last-minute scratch with flu-like symptoms.
Gasol had 18 points and 16 rebounds, and Joakim Noah had 18 points and 15 rebounds as the Bulls pounded the Warriors down ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)
Jan 28 2015
DETROIT -- The Cleveland Cavaliers have turned their season around, winning their seventh game in a row with Tuesday's 103-95 road victory over the Detroit Pistons.
Now Cavs coach David Blatt believes it's time for the narrative surrounding LeBron James' campaign to change as well. Specifically, Blatt wants to know why James' name doesn't appear in the MVP conversation more often.
"That's just kind of funny, to be honest with you," Blatt said before the Pistons game. "First of all, he's the greatest player in our game, and he's had, since he's been healthy -- and really all year, but particularly since he's been healthy -- his performance has been as high level as ever. And you don't have to look very far at our record to see what impact he has on this team when he's playing and not playing."
The Cavs have gone 25-12 with James in the lineup this season, and the 12-year veteran is now averaging 30.5 points, 6.8 rebounds, 6.4 assists and 2.0 steals in eight games since returning from a two-week rest period to rehab strains in his left knee and lower back.
Going into Tuesday, James was averaging 26.2 points (second in the league), 7.4 assists (tied for seventh), 5.6 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game with 49.3 percent shooting for the season. His PER of 26.15 ranked seventh.
He finished Tuesday's win with 32 points, seven assists, six rebounds and a steal, and even heard a smattering of an "M-V-P" chant from the Palace at Auburn Hills crowd late in the fourth quarter.
Supporting his case is the fact that James' impact has been felt nearly as much when he has been missing from the lineup, as Cleveland is a lowly 1-8 without him this season.
"Certainly it does say something about what his value is when he is ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)
Jan 28 2015
LOS ANGELES -- They battled for championships on opposite sides of the NBA's most storied rivalry.
Paul Pierce's Boston Celtics won the first round in 2008. Kobe Bryant's Los Angeles Lakers won the rematch two years later.
Pierce on Tuesday lamented Bryant's latest injury, a torn rotator cuff in his right shoulder that will require surgery and is expected to keep Bryant sidelined for the remainder of the 2014-15 season.
"It always saddens me, knowing that Kobe, who is one of my NBA brothers, we lose [him] due to injury," Pierce said during shootaround before the Washington Wizards beat the Lakers 98-92 at Staples Center. "It always saddens me."
Their trash talk hasn't been as fierce of late, with 36-year-old Bryant's Lakers in rebuilding mode and 37-year-old Pierce now playing for the Wizards.
But the connection remains.
"A lot of fans around the league pay to watch Kobe, a lot of fans around the world," Pierce said. "Regardless of how the Lakers are doing or not, he's an icon. He's a player who defined his generation. A lot of people that come out here to see him."
Bryant recently raved about how much he enjoyed on-court banter with Pierce, even at this late stage in their careers.
"It's just fun. We're one of the last two of our generation," said Pierce, who sat out Tuesday with a toe injury. "That's pretty much a lot of the things we talked about on the court, a little bit of a trash in there.
"But we also said there's no more trash-talkers in the league today coming up. It's a generation that's passing by, and a lot of these guys are friends. I don't think this new generation is as competitive as we were with the past guys."
Pierce pegged the change to technology.
"Computers," Pierce said. "They play 'NBA 2K' instead of going ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- LeBron James came leaping in to try to stop Jodie Meeks as the Detroit guard drove to the basket during the final seconds of the third quarter.
After colliding with Meeks, James put his hands out to break his fall before sliding across the floor on his stomach.
"I was scared, because I broke my wrist on a fall like that in high school," James said. "I was either going to land on my face or break the fall with my hands, but when I hit, both my arms went numb. I'm OK now -- it was just something like a stinger -- but I wasn't sure at first."
James barely missed any game time after that anxious moment, and he finished with 32 points to help the Cleveland Cavaliers to their seventh straight victory Tuesday night, 103-95 over the Pistons. Kyrie Irving matched his season high with 38 points.
The Cavs never trailed in the second half, but when James hit the deck and didn't immediately get up, that was plenty to be concerned about.
"That is obviously a time of worry, which is the understatement of the year," Cleveland coach David Blatt said. "In a situation like that, you are just hoping he is OK."
James quickly came back in the game, and his two-handed breakaway dunk early in the fourth put Cleveland up 80-68.
Greg Monroe had 17 points and 12 rebounds for the Pistons, who pulled within eight and had the ball late in the fourth quarter, but Kentavious Caldwell-Pope was unable to connect from 3-point range. James drew a foul at the other end and made both free throws to make it 88-78 with 2:56 to play.
Caldwell-Pope was fouled by James while shooting a 3-pointer with 2:00 remaining, and that trio of free throws made it 90-83. The ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)
Jan 28 2015
NEW YORK -- Los Angeles Clippers forward Matt Barnes has been fined $25,000 for directing inappropriate language toward a fan.
The NBA made the announcement on Tuesday. The incident occurred with 4:28 remaining in the second quarter of the Clippers' 120-100 win over the Phoenix Suns on Sunday at US Airways Center.
Barnes finished with four points, going 1-for-9 from the field.
Barnes reacted to the fine on Twitter, unleashing a series of tweets in which he implicated Suns owner Robert Sarver as the instigator of the incident.
INDIANAPOLIS -- Toronto's dynamic backcourt delivered a one-two knockout punch Tuesday night. Again.
This time with All-Star starter Kyle Lowry spreading the floor and DeMar DeRozan finding his way to the basket, their teammates exploited other openings in Indiana's defense. It was simply too much for the struggling Pacers.
DeRozan finished with 24 points, Lowry had 19 and three of their teammates also scored in double figures, as the Raptors pulled away 104-91.
"I'm getting more comfortable every single day," said DeRozan, who missed 21 games with a torn tendon in his left groin. "Just getting back to used to playing the game I'm accustomed to playing,"
Without DeRozan, the Raptors were 12-9.
With him -- and Lowry -- they looked more like the team with the third-best record in the Eastern Conference.
Toronto (30-15), the NBA's fifth-highest scoring team, shot 46.6 percent from the field after starting the game in a 9-0 hole, made nine 3-pointers and even managed to play the more physical Pacers to a virtual draw on the glass. The Atlantic Division-leading Raptors won their third straight and broke the franchise record for most wins before the All-Star break.
But without DeRozan and Lowry, it's unlikely any of this would have been possible.
The two combined for 15 of 32 from the field and finished with 13 rebounds and 10 assists. Lowry was 3 of 7 from beyond the arc, including back-to-back 3s to start a 15-4 third-quarter spurt that pushed what had been a five-point lead to 73-57 with 2:42 left.
Lowry was 10 of 13 from the free-throw line and scored five of the Raptors points in a half-closing 7-1 spurt that gave Toronto a 50-44 lead.
"They made more plays. They've got a couple all-stars on their team and they're tough to guard," said Pacers coach Frank Vogel. "They're great at picking up ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)
DALLAS -- Who needs timeouts when you have Z-Bo.
Zach Randolph scored 22 points, including several high-arcing jumpers over defensive stalwart Tyson Chandler in the second half to answer Dallas scoring spurts, and Memphis handed the Mavericks their first three-game losing streak of the season with a 109-90 win Tuesday night.
"We only had to call one timeout to stop a run," Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger said. "We executed, and you can't say enough about what Zach got going in the second half."
The Mavericks had trailed by as many as 16 points but were within nine late in the third quarter when Randolph had the ball on the right wing late in the shot clock.
Grizzlies led by double digits the rest of the way to win their fourth straight and eighth in their past nine games a night after finishing a season-long five-game homestand. The only loss in that stretch was to Dallas last week at home.
"That ball was dropping," said Randolph, who made seven straight shots in the second half and was 10 of 15 from the field. "My teammates kept coming to me and believing in me, and I just kept getting aggressive."
Chandler Parsons and Monta Ellis scored 19 apiece to lead the Mavericks, who failed for the third time to get coach Rick Carlisle his 600th career victory in the first of four games in five nights -- the first three against playoff contenders.
"We've got to sustain effort during defensive possessions," said Carlisle, whose team fell 3 1/2 games behind Southwest Division-leading Memphis. "Right now it's a hard conference. It's a hard stretch of schedule."
Marc Gasol added 15 points and a game-high six assists for the Grizzlies, while Nick Calathes had season highs with 13 points and 27 minutes with guard Mike Conley sidelined a night after spraining his ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)
Jan 28 2015
The Milwaukee Bucks will sign former All-Star power forward Kenyon Martin to a rest-of-the-season contract this week, according to league sources.
Sources told ESPN.com that Martin, who completes his second 10-day deal with the Bucks on Wednesday, has lent a welcome veteran touch to a young locker room since reuniting with first-year Milwaukee coach Jason Kidd, with whom he played in New Jersey.
The Bucks, sources say, are also planning to call up point guard Jorge Gutierrez -- another Kidd favorite -- on a 10-day deal out of the NBA D-League to bolster the backcourt depth in the wake of Kendall Marshall's recent season-ending knee injury.
Gutierrez, currently playing for the D-League's Canton Charge, made his NBA debut last season in Brooklyn when Kidd was coaching the Nets and is a fellow Cal product like his coach.
Martin, 37, has played sparingly in eight games since joining the Bucks, but adds a voice of experience as well as frontcourt know-how to Milwaukee's young roster. The Bucks' frontcourt rotation has been weakened by the season-ending knee injury suffered by prized rookie Jabari Parker and Larry Sanders' recent suspension for violating the league's anti-drug policy.
Martin and Kidd played together on the New Jersey teams that made back-to-back trips to the NBA Finals in 2002 and 2003 and also spent a season together with the New York Knicks in 2012-13.
"He's a very smart basketball player," Kidd said earlier this month. "It won't take long for him to understand what we're trying to do. For us, it's a process of learning a lot of different things and one of the best ways is learning from your teammates. He's been in a lot of battles. He's been on pretty good teams throughout his career and he understands what it takes."
Players can sign two 10-day contracts before a team must ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)
Jan 28 2015
HOUSTON -- Dwight Howard could miss Houston's game against Dallas on Wednesday night after tweaking his injured right ankle in practice.
Howard missed Sunday's game after spraining his ankle Friday night. He started practice Tuesday, but left after turning his ankle in the workout.
"Hopefully I can play ... we'll see what happens (Wednesday)," Howard said.
Also Tuesday, forward Terrence Jones went through a full practice for the first time since he was injured, and coach Kevin McHale said he could play on Wednesday.
"If he feels good we'll try to get him some time," McHale said.
Jones hasn't played since Nov. 3 because of nerve inflammation in his left leg. He can't wait to get back in the lineup.
"It took a while but it's finally becoming a reality and I get to get back to myself," Jones said. "It's just going to be exciting."
The 23-year-old Jones was Houston's starting power forward all last season when he averaged 12.1 points and 6.9 rebounds. He had a good start to the season, too, averaging 14 points and 7.5 rebounds in four games.
"He had a really strong training camp and at the start of the season he was playing very well, was confident, moving very well, stronger," McHale said. "So right now it's getting a guy that can move right into your rotation, it's like making a trade. It's huge for our team."
His teammates are looking forward to his return as well, with NBA leading scorer James Harden raving about what he adds to the Rockets.
"It brings another dimension to the team," Harden said. "His scoring ability. He's so versatile, especially defensively and we've missed him for most of the season."
Jones is trying not to get too excited about playing until he knows for sure if he'll get to go on Wednesday, but he can't help but ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)
Jan 28 2015
Milwaukee's Giannis Antetokounmpo, Minnesota's Zach LaVine, Orlando's Victor Oladipo and Brooklyn's Mason Plumlee will be the contestants in the 2015 Sprite Slam Dunk contest, the NBA announced Tuesday night.
Plumlee tweeted he was "thrilled" to be taking part in the contest.
LaVine also relayed a message via Twitter.
The dunk contest will be Feb. 14 at Barclays Center, part of NBA All-Star Weekend in New York. The All-Star Game will be Feb. 15 at Madison Square Garden.
This year's dunk contest will feature two rounds and no time limits. Each player will get two dunks in the first round, with the two players with the highest combined scores advancing to the final round. The two finalists also will get two dunks apiece in the head-to-head round.
There is a three-attempt maximum for each dunk. The event will feature five judges, who will score each dunk on a scale of 6 to 10, for a low score of 30 and a high score of 50.
The 2014 dunk contest champion was the Washington Wizards' John Wall.