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Irving to have knee surgery, Antetokounmpo out with ankle sprain

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Boston's Kyrie Irving and Milwaukee's Giannis Antetokounmopo, two of the NBA's top-10 scorers, will be sidelined with injuries for road games Friday, their clubs announced. Irving, who celebrated his 26th birthday Friday, is averaging 24.4 points, 5.1 assists and 3.8 rebounds in 60 games this season but has been nagged by a sore left knee for the injury-hit Celtics, who open a four-game road trip at Portland. It's the same left knee Irving hurt in the opening game of the 2015 NBA Finals playing for Cleveland against eventual champion Golden State, a setback that required kneecap surgery.

Source – sports.yahoo.com

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Boston Celtics star Kyrie Irving to undergo procedure on left knee

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Boston Celtics star Kyrie Irving will undergo a minor procedure on his ailing left knee Saturday. The Celtics announced on Friday that Irving would have the procedure to “alleviate irritation in his left knee” after the five-time All-Star received a second opinion in New York on Thursday. Irving, 25, has missed the past four games for the Celtics because of the lack of comfort in his knee.

Source – sports.yahoo.com

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Jaylen Brown after concussion: ‘My mom definitely said no more dunking’

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In his first meeting with the media since suffering an ugly concussion, Jaylen Brown was willing to make jokes about the moment which terrified Boston Celtics players and fans. The Boston Celtics forward was frank about the severity of the moment. During the Celtics' win over the Timberwolves on March 9, Brown went for a dunk in transition, but slipped off the rim and fell backward onto his head in an awkward position.

Source – sports.yahoo.com

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Gordon Hayward gives update on ankle rehab

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Gordon Hayward is trying to translate his rehab off the court onto the hardwood. The Boston Celtics forward detailed the latest steps he's taking in his rehab from his ankle injury. "Rehab is going well, still progressing on the AlterG (anti-gravity treadmill), trying to get where I can run on a regular treadmill, so 100-percent bodyweight," Hayward said in a video posted to the Celtics' Twitter account.

Source – sports.yahoo.com

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Beside The Points For Thursday, March 22, 2018

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Beside The Points For Thursday, March 22, 2018

By Walt Hickey

Filed under Beside The Points

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Things That Caught My Eye

Celtics bring the Thunder

There have been 885 NBA teams who trailed by 5 or more points in the final 20 seconds of a game this season so far. Of those, 884 of them went on to lose that game. On Tuesday, the Boston Celtics became the first team this season to pull off a win in that scenario, beating a 5 point deficit with 16.8 seconds to go. [FiveThirtyEight]

Boeheim on top

Jim Boeheim of Syracuse has edged out Tom Izzo of Michigan State to take the top sport when it comes to wins over expected in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament. Boeheim has 54 wins and 25 losses when we’d only expect his teams to get 44.3 wins, giving him a 9.7 wins over expected in the tourney. [FiveThirtyEight]

Try out our interactive, Which World Cup Team Should You Root For?

Gore to mount campaign in Florida

Frank Gore, an immortal, has signed a one year deal with the Miami Dolphins. In 2017 he rushed 961 yards for the Indianapolis Colts, 39 yards shy of a tenth career 1,000 yard season. Frank Gore will be 35 years old. [ESPN]

Mickelson is playing the best in his career

Phil Mickelson has finished in the top 15 in 6 out of 8 tournaments this year with a season average finish position just under 20. This makes this season one of the best of his career so far. [FiveThirtyEight]

New Football league

In addition to Vince McMahon’s attempt to revive the XFL, a competitor to the NFL, this past week documentary filmmaker Charlie Ebersol announced the Alliance of American Football will debut in February, 2019 and will run for 10 weeks. Reality is, there are 28,000 Division I NCAA football players and at any given time only 1,700 NFL jobs, so they’ll certainly have players. The competitive advantage of the league would be 60 percent fewer commercials and no TV timeouts. [ESPN]

Soccer players not unanimous fans of not playing soccer

A poll of 104 current Major League Soccer players across 22 of the league’s 23 clubs found rising but still middling support for promotion and relegation. In 2017, 54 percent of players favored the introduction of promotion and relegation — where the worst teams in a league are relegated to a lesser league while the best teams in that lesser league are elevated to the majors — but that figure’s since risen to 63 percent. The main concerns are that a viable second division doesn’t yet exist and that ownership groups would be destabilized. [ESPN]

Big Number

30 quick time outs

Gregg Popovich, the coach of the San Antonio Spurs, has no qualms about calling a time out in the early moments of a game. As of Monday, Popovich had called 30 time outs in the first two minutes of a game since 2009, head and shoulders above the rest of the league. [FiveThirtyEight]

Leaks from Slack

chris.herring [9:51 PM, Wednesday]

Pop just called timeout 2 mins into their game on national TV

micah:

@chris.herring I’ll tweet that from the main account!

chris.herring [9:51 PM, Wednesday]:

In fairness to Pop, Spurs missed their first 7 or 8 shots. I would’ve called timeout, too :joy:

Predictions

NCAA Men’s Tournament

NCAA Men’s Tournament See all games `

NBA

NBA See more NBA predictions

Oh, and don’t forget
Why can’t the Rockets be the Warriors?

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Walt Hickey is FiveThirtyEight’s chief culture writer. @WaltHickey

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Memphis Grizzlies v Indiana Pacers

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Celtics should get word Friday on Irving’s status

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Kyrie Irving has had a second opinion on his sore left knee, and a decision on what the next step will be is expected to be made within the next day or two, according to a league source. The medical officials involved in the initial evaluation will meet with those who examined him today will get together to compare notes and determine what's in the best interest of Irving going forward.

Source – sports.yahoo.com

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How Celtics bench players are evolving into key roles

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It wasn't that long ago that Abdel Nader was getting what he described as "garbage minutes" which for the basketball vernacularly-challenged, means playing time at the end of games when the outcome is all but decided. "Every game is a new learning experience," Nader told NBC Sports Boston. Injuries have left the Celtics little choice but to turn to Nader and guys who have played limited roles this year, to not just play but deliver in a way akin to what the players two and three-deep ahead of him on the depth chart, were doing.

Source – sports.yahoo.com

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The Utah Jazz Might Just Be For Real

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The Utah Jazz Might Just Be For Real

FiveThirtyEight’s NBA podcast dives into the latest questions on Rockets, the Jazz and the OKC Thunder.

By Neil Paine, Chris Herring and Kyle Wagner

Filed under The Lab

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By Neil Paine, Chris Herring and Kyle Wagner More: Apple Podcasts | ESPN App | RSS | Embed Embed Code <iframe frameborder="0" width="100%" height="180" style="margin:20px auto 25px;max-width:600px;" scrolling="no" src="https://fivethirtyeight.com/player/the-lab/22861744/"></iframe>

Welcome to The Lab, FiveThirtyEight’s basketball podcast. On this week’s show (March 22, 2018), Neil, Chris and Kyle break down the Houston Rockets’ potential. Has James Harden all but locked up the MVP award this year? And is a Rockets vs. Golden State Warriors Western Conference final inevitable? Next, the Utah Jazz are on an impressive tear, moving up in the playoff rankings despite a crowded field. The crew discusses the Jazz’s success and breaks down the unique challenges facing a small-market team. Plus, a significant digit on the Boston Celtics.

Here are links to what the podcast discussed this week:

  • Keep an eye on our 2017-18 NBA predictions, updated after every game.
  • Kyle wrote about the Houston Rockets this week, asking: Why can’t they be the Warriors?
  • The Atlanta Hawks ended the Utah Jazz’s nine-game win streak on Tuesday.
  • Significant Digit: 1-and-884, the record (per ESPN Stats and Info) for NBA teams who trailed by 5 or more points in the final 20 seconds of a game this season. The Boston Celtics are the only team to have won. They stunned the Oklahoma City Thunder Tuesday night by overcoming a 5-point deficit with 16.8 seconds to go.

Neil Paine is a senior sportswriter for FiveThirtyEight. @Neil_Paine

Chris Herring is a senior sportswriter for FiveThirtyEight. @herring_nba

Kyle Wagner is a senior editor at FiveThirtyEight. @kylenw

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FiveThirtyEight Podcasts (464 posts) Houston Rockets (29) The Lab (27) James Harden (21) Utah Jazz (6)

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The Pacers Are Bucking Every NBA Trend. And It’s Working.

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Who’s The Best At Coaching In The NCAA Men’s Tournament?

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Why Can’t The Rockets Be The Warriors?

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Source – sports.yahoo.com