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TODAY'S NBA RUMORS

Updated Wednesday, February 1, 2023 at 11:15 a.m. ET

As the fanfare for LeBron James' quest for the NBA's all-time scoring record reached a fever pitch Tuesday -- playing in the world's most famous arena in the city where the longtime No. 1 scorer, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, was born -- James made his mark with his passing. James dished out 11 assists in the Los Angeles Lakers' 129-123 overtime win over the New York Knicks, bringing his career assists total to 10,338 and leapfrogging Mark Jackson (10,334) and Steve Nash (10,335) to move up to No. 4 on the all-time list. - ESPN.com

"It's amazing because that's just what I love to do and get my guys involved," said James, who added 28 points and 10 rebounds for his first triple-double of the season, becoming the first player to log a triple-double in his 20th season or beyond. "Anytime you link with some of the greats -- Mark Jackson played here, was drafted here by the Knicks, so it's a super cool thing. And obviously, we know when Nash was [in the league]; I played against him for many, many years. His ability to pass the ball was very uncanny." - ESPN.com

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James passed Steve Nash for fourth place on the NBA's all-time assist leaderboard following his 11-assist performance against the New York Knicks on Tuesday. As reported by ESPN's Brian Windhorst in 2016, James' ability to efficiently distribute the ball is particularly noteworthy, especially at his position. - ESPN.com



TUESDAY'S NBA RUMORS

Luka Doncic made a detour toward the Detroit Pistons' bench during a timeout with 7.1 seconds remaining in the Dallas Mavericks' 111-105 win Monday night. He approached Pistons assistant coach Jerome Allen to offer a few parting thoughts, punctuating a conversation that had continued throughout the game, a final exchange that was extended as they barked at each other while Doncic slowly backpedaled toward the Dallas bench. As the discussion ended, Doncic laughed and cracked a big smile. He had certainly gotten the final word, scoring 53 points in his return from a brief absence due to a sprained left ankle to lead the Mavs to victory. - ESPN.com

"I mean, since the first quarter, he was chirping," Doncic said after his NBA-leading fourth 50-point performance of the season. "You know I'll chirp back. From the first quarter, he was chirping. I don't want to say the words. I have no problem with that. It's basketball. It gets me going for sure." - ESPN.com

LeBron James isn't the only Los Angeles Lakers player making remarkable moves in the record books while the team remains pedestrian in the standings. Guard Russell Westbrook (8,972) passed Gary Payton (8,966) for No. 10 on the NBA's all-time assists list during the Lakers' 121-104 loss to the Brooklyn Nets on Monday night. "If somebody had told me 15 years ago, 20 years ago that you'd be top 10 in assists, I'd look at them like they was crazy," Westbrook said after finishing with 17 points, 10 assists and 8 rebounds. "In the NBA, never dreamt of being in this position, nor getting to the point to where I'm next to some of the greats. I'm just truly grateful and thankful for an opportunity to keep playing at the highest level and I don't take any of that for granted." - ESPN.com



MONDAY'S NBA RUMORS

The fallout from the Los Angeles Lakers' overtime loss to the Boston Celtics on Saturday continued Sunday with a statement from the National Basketball Referees Association on its official Twitter account. "Like everyone else, referees make mistakes," the union wrote in its tweet. "We made one at the end of last night's game and that is gut-wrenching for us. This play will weigh heavily and cause sleepless nights as we strive to be the best referees we can be." - ESPN.com

LeBron James and Anthony Davis were both ruled out of Monday's game against the Brooklyn Nets, the Los Angeles Lakers announced Sunday. On the front end of back-to-back games in New York, James will be held out with left ankle soreness. - ESPN.com

Giannis Antetokounmpo saw it coming. The Milwaukee Bucks star was about to start a postgame on-court interview when out of the corner of his eye, he saw his teammates standing in the tunnel. He knew exactly what they were plotting, too. As more teammates emerged, Antetokounmpo slowly started to back away from the baseline all the way to half court. Eventually, he accepted his fate and teammates doused him in water to celebrate another great performance -- 50 points and 13 rebounds on 20-of-26 shooting in just 30 minutes of action as the Bucks took down the New Orleans Pelicans, 135-110, on Sunday. - ESPN.com

He admitted he knew he was close to the 50-point mark late as he was hoisting up the 3-pointers. "I knew that if I was able to get the rebound, I was going to shoot," Antetokounmpo said. "It doesn't always work out, but tonight it did. I didn't hesitate at all. I was able to get my legs under my shot. Stayed there and just watched the ball go in. "It's one of those moments you can never take for granted because you never know when you're going to have those moments again." - ESPN.com

The Memphis Grizzlies held a moment of silence Sunday for Tyre Nichols before they played the Indiana Pacers, the club's first home game since footage was released of Memphis police officers beating Nichols to death after a traffic stop Jan. 7. Nichols, 29, died three days after the beating occurred. Five officers were fired and all face second-degree murder charges as well as charges of aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping, official misconduct and official oppression. - ESPN.com



SUNDAY'S NBA RUMORS

The head referee in the Los Angeles Lakers' 125-121 overtime loss to the Celtics on Saturday admitted there was a missed shooting foul by Jayson Tatum against LeBron James in the final seconds of regulation, leaving L.A. seething about another defeat tied to officiating. The Lakers had a golden opportunity to knock off the league-leading Celtics when James drove to the hoop with the score tied with 4.0 seconds remaining. He got all the way to the basket when he attempted a left-handed layup and was smacked on the arm by Tatum, missing the shot just before time expired. - ESPN.com

James immediately turned to the referee stationed along the baseline, grabbing his arm to indicate where the contact occurred. He hopped up and down, slapped the hardwood, held his hands on his head in disbelief and finally dropped to his knees in the paint and put his head down into his arms on the floor. "There was contact," crew chief Eric Lewis said to a pool reporter after the game. "At the time, during the game, we did not see a foul. The crew missed the play." - ESPN.com

Indiana Pacers center Myles Turner has agreed to a two-year, $60 million contract extension that includes an additional $17.1 million renegotiation on his 2022-23 salary, his agent Austin Brown of CAA Sports told ESPN on Saturday. The deal will include a $17.1 million renegotiation bump -- the largest in NBA history -- on Turner's $18 million salary this season, with an additional $41 million over the next two seasons that ties Turner to the Pacers through the 2024-25 season. - ESPN.com

Nets head coach Jacque Vaughn used a baseball reference to describe the direction he wants embattled forward Ben Simmons to trend toward this season. Simmons, who left Thursday’s loss to the Detroit Pistons after getting hit in the face and did not return due to left knee soreness, missed Sunday’s cross-bridge rivalry showdown against the Knicks with knee soreness. Vaughn declined to address Simmons’ absence specifically but used a general analogy to express his view. - NY Daily News



SATURDAY'S NBA RUMORS

As part of a wide-ranging interview with New York City radio station WFAN Friday afternoon, New York Knicks owner James Dolan said he believes in the job team president Leon Rose is doing, and that he "fully expects" the Knicks to make the playoffs this season. "Yes, absolutely," Dolan said on WFAN's "Carton and Roberts," hosted by Craig Carton and Evan Roberts, when asked if he was happy with the job Rose is doing. - ESPN.com

James Dolan: "Why did I bring Leon in? I've been doing this for like 20-something years and in my experience with the NBA, there's things you can do as an owner. You can create an environment where everybody, you give them enough money to do their job, give them more money than they need to do their job. You can stay out of the way, which is usually the best course of action. "But you do end up picking the one guy who's going to make all the strategy, who's going to execute for you. I picked Leon because I believe after you look at the NBA and the game that we play, that the team with the best talent wins. You want a guy who can get you the best talent. I believe that Leon Rose is still the best guy." - ESPN.com

Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic has been ruled out for Saturday's game at the Utah Jazz with a left ankle sprain, the team announced Friday night. He is expected to be day-to-day going forward after suffering what is described as a "mild sprain," sources told ESPN. - ESPN.com

A jersey worn by LeBron James during the first half of Game 7 of the 2013 NBA Finals sold at auction for $3.7 million Friday, becoming the third-most expensive game-worn jersey ever sold at Sotheby's. It is the most a game-worn James jersey has ever fetched at Sotheby's but ranks behind Michael Jordan's "Last Dance" NBA Finals jersey ($10.91 million) and Diego Maradona's "Hand of God" jersey ($9.28 million). On the night James wore this jersey, he scored 37 points, nabbed 12 rebounds and had four assists as the Miami Heat eliminated the San Antonio Spurs in Game 7. - ESPN.com



FRIDAY'S NBA RUMORS

LeBron James and Giannis Antetokounmpo were named the captains of the two teams that will take part in the 2023 NBA All-Star Game next month in Salt Lake City. James ties Kareem Abdul-Jabbar -- whom he is about to pass as the league's all-time scoring leader -- for most All-Star Game appearances with 19. James has now been a captain each of the six years the NBA has utilized the format of two captains drafting their individual teams. The Los Angeles Lakers star is averaging 29.9 points, 8.5 rebounds and 7.0 assists in his age-38 NBA season. - ESPN.com

Joining James among starters selected from the Western Conference are New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson, Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic, Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry and Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic. - ESPN.com

The other East starters alongside Antetokounmpo are Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant and his teammate Kyrie Irving, Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum and Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell. - ESPN.com

Dallas superstar Luka Doncic exited in the first quarter of the Mavericks' 99-95 win over the Phoenix Suns on Thursday because of a sprained left ankle. Doncic suffered the injury when he stepped on a Suns defender's foot while pivoting a few minutes into the game. - ESPN.com

After missing two free throws with 7.6 seconds to go in overtime that would've given the Boston Celtics the lead, star guard Jaylen Brown took the blame for Boston's 120-117 overtime loss to the New York Knicks at TD Garden Thursday night. "I've just got to be better, to be honest," Brown said after finishing with 22 points on 8-for-22 shooting and nine rebounds in 42 minutes. "Tonight was a rough game, and I'm a better basketball player than I played today. "Those two missed free throws kind of embodied the whole game. I didn't get it going, didn't give my teammates enough energy to get the win, and that's what happens when you don't come out and give your best. I'll be better." - ESPN.com

Brooklyn Nets big man Ben Simmons left Thursday's 130-122 loss to the Detroit Pistons because of left knee soreness. Simmons, who has already missed 11 games this season because of injury, exited in the third quarter but it is unclear exactly when he got hurt. - ESPN.com

Longtime college basketball broadcaster Billy Packer, who was a part of 34 Final Fours for NBC and CBS, died Thursday at the age of 82, according to a tweet from his son. “The Packer Family would like to share some sad news,” tweeted his son Mark, who hosts a show on the ACC Network. “Our amazing father, Billy, has passed. We take peace knowing that he’s in heaven with Barb. RIP, Billy.” - NY Post



THURSDAY'S NBA RUMORS

With Golden State leading Memphis by just two points with 1:14 remaining Wednesday night, Stephen Curry clapped his hands at Jordan Poole after what Curry said he thought was an ill-advised 3-point attempt by his Warriors teammate. While running back on defense, a frustrated Curry took out his mouthpiece and whipped it through the air. It ricocheted off the court and landed near the courtside seats for an automatic ejection. "It was a crucial time in the game, and the way that our season has gone, questions about a heightened sense of urgency ... when you want something really bad ... I reacted in a way that put myself out of the game and put the team in a tough place," Curry said after the Warriors pulled off a wild 122-120 victory. - ESPN.com

Rui Hachimura made his debut as the Los Angeles Lakers' newest addition on Wednesday ... but a lot of his fans back home missed out on the action -- 'cause the historic moment caused the NBA's streaming service in Japan to crash. The Lakers acquired the 24-year-old from the Washington Wizards earlier this week ... shipping Kendrick Nunn and a handful of second round picks to secure the deal -- making Rui the first Japanese-born player in Lakers franchise history. - TMZ.com

Dennis Schroder's Wednesday night went from awesome to pretty crappy real quick ... 'cause just after the Lakers point guard helped his team beat the Spurs -- a vehicle he was riding in was stopped by cops in Hollywood. Cops tell TMZ Sports ... it all went down at around midnight, just a couple hours after the Lakers game had ended. According to an LAPD spokesperson, the stop was initiated after the vehicle allegedly had improper plates. - TMZ.com



WEDNESDAY'S NBA RUMORS

Pat Riley and the Heat in the offseason weren't sure that this roster needed improvement, after closing within a game of the 2022 NBA Finals. Now there is a baseline that shows issues with size, poor shooting, age, injuries and unproductive contracts. In July, the Heat, even with the free-agency loss P.J. Tucker, thought they were in a better place than they have wound up. Now they know they have a roster battling just to avoid the play-in. Now they know improvement is needed. Now what can happen is taking complete stock once again in advance of the Feb. 9 NBA trading deadline. Games like Tuesday showed that they might be a piece away when whole. - South Florida Sun Sentinel

The Memphis Grizzlies' road trip hasn't been pleasant losing their first three games. Now it gets worse with center Steven Adams out for an extended period of time. The team announced Tuesday that Adams is expected to miss 3-5 weeks due to a PCL sprain in his right knee. The injury was suffered on the last play of Sunday's loss to the Phoenix Suns. - Memphis Commercial Appeal

LeBron James hit a 26-foot 3-pointer - his ninth - that cut the Clippers' lead to 10 points midway through the fourth quarter and Coach Tyronn Lue immediately called a timeout. Through the chatter in the huddle, Lue made his point clear. If the Clippers were going to pull out a victory on Tuesday night, they needed their two stars to make it happen. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George took the challenge and combined for nine points in two minutes before exiting the game with the lead safely back to 20 points. The rest of the team held it together in the final minutes for a 133-115 victory over the Lakers at Crypto.com Arena. - OC Register

The Celtics lost their second consecutive game on Tuesday, falling to the Heat 98-95. Here are the takeaways: The Celtics were short-handed, playing without Jaylen Brown (injury management), Al Horford (back stiffness, or more accurately, second night of a back-to-back stiffness), Marcus Smart (ankle sprain), and Malcolm Brogdon (personal reasons). And yet, they still had every opportunity to steal a game from a scuffling Heat team that couldn't buy a bucket from 3-point range. Tyler Herro finished 4-for-19 from the floor, which undersells how poorly he played. Max Strus - who tends to play pretty well against his former team - shot just 4-for-10 from the field. With 8:47 remaining, the Celtics led by 10 and Jayson Tatum was still parked on the bench, resting up for the fourth-quarter run. Things looked pretty promising. - Boston.com



TUESDAY'S NBA RUMORS

Magic forward Jonathan Isaac stood at the scorer's table, had a brief talk with coach Jamahl Mosley and calmly removed his shooting shirt. He turned to the court, stuck his mouthpiece in and walked onto an NBA floor to play his first game in over 900 days. The long wait was over. As he checked into the game between a pair of Jayson Tatum free throws, the sellout crowd of 19,196 inside the Amway Center showed its appreciation with a rousing ovation. Isaac, 25, hadn't played an official NBA game since Aug. 2, 2020, when he tore the ACL in his left knee during a game in the Orlando bubble. He missed all of the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons and half of the 2022-23 campaign before returning Monday night against the Boston Celtics. - ESPN.com

Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 20 of his 29 points in the first quarter, returning to the lineup after a five-game absence to lead the Milwaukee Bucks in a 150-130 win over the Detroit Pistons on Monday night. The two-time MVP had been out with a sore left knee and was joined by three-time All-Star Khris Middleton, putting the Bucks' prolific duo in the same lineup for the first time in more than a month. "The band is back together," Antetokounmpo said. - ESPN.com

Get ready, Seattle ... the NBA is coming back -- at least, that's according to Gary Payton, who tells TMZ Sports he truly believes the Association is gearing up to put a squad back in the city soon. The NBA legend said he feels it'll all come as part of an expansion effort in the next two or three years. Payton explained ... he thinks NBA commissioner Adam Silver will add two teams to the league, one in Las Vegas -- and the other in Seattle. He said he figures it'll all go down around 2025. - TMZ.com



MONDAY'S NBA RUMORS

Orlando Magic forward Jonathan Isaac is set to make his return from a severe left knee injury that has sidelined him since Aug. 2, 2020. Isaac's pastor said during a Sunday morning service that Isaac was set to return, and then a team source confirmed to ESPN that Isaac is expected to be listed as questionable on the injury report later this afternoon, and if all goes according to plan, he will be upgraded to available Monday morning ahead of that night's game against the Boston Celtics. - ESPN.com

A Michael Jordan 1997 Upper Deck Game Jersey Patch Autograph Card sold for $840,000 at auction Thursday evening ... becoming one of the highest-priced MJ cards ever! Officials at PWCC tell TMZ Sports the card, which features a swatch from His Airness' 1992 All-Star Game jersey, as well as an MJ autograph, is now the sixth-highest selling Jordan card in card collecting history. - TMZ.com



SUNDAY'S NBA RUMORS

Rui Hachimura doesn't seem too disturbed by the idea he could be traded. "I just want to be somewhere that wants me as a basketball player, and I want to be somewhere that likes my game," the Washington Wizards forward said Saturday night. When asked if Washington is that place, he replied: "I don't know. We've got to find out." - AP via ESPN.com

Charlotte point guard LaMelo Ball missed the Hornets' 122-118 win over the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday with a sore left ankle and sore right knee. Ball, the third overall draft pick of 2020, is also dealing with right wrist soreness. - AP via ESPN.com

Bill Schonely, the longtime Portland Trail Blazers broadcaster with a distinctive baritone who coined the phrase "Rip City," died on Saturday. He was 93. Affectionately known as The Schonz, Schonely was the team's broadcaster for its inaugural season in 1970 and held the job for some 28 years -- including the team's NBA championship run in 1977. - AP via ESPN.com



SATURDAY'S NBA RUMORS

Los Angeles Lakers All-Star Anthony Davis continues to make pain-free progress on his right foot and there's optimism for a return to the lineup as soon as late next week, sources told ESPN on Friday. The Lakers start a five-game trip Jan. 28 in Boston. - ESPN.com

After missing seven weeks with a shoulder injury, Cleveland Cavaliers forward Dean Wade is planning his return against the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday, sources told ESPN. - ESPN.com

The most impressive part of Kyrie Irving's 48-point performance Friday night actually came about an hour after he carried the Brooklyn Nets to a much-needed 117-106 win over the Utah Jazz. In the midst of describing the most defining game of Irving's season, a reporter prefaced a question about the team's expectations in the wake of Kevin Durant's absence, noting that it was probably an unrealistic expectation to think Irving would go off for close to 50 every night. Before the question was even finished, Irving interjected his own answer. "I don't think it's an unrealistic expectation," he said, confidently. - ESPN.com

Tempers flared just after the second-quarter buzzer in Friday night's game between the Memphis Grizzlies and Los Angeles Lakers when several members of the Grizzlies engaged in a shouting match with Pro Football Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe, who was seated near the court. Referees and security intervened to settle the confrontation as several Grizzlies players -- including Dillon Brooks, Steven Adams, Ja Morant and Morant's father, Tee Morant -- gathered on the sideline opposite their bench at Crypto.com Arena to approach Sharpe. Sharpe, who works as a commentator for Fox Sports, was escorted by security through the tunnel to a back hallway of the arena, where he stayed for halftime before returning to his seat for the third quarter. - ESPN.com



FRIDAY'S NBA RUMORS

Thursday's game in Boston saw one of their better third quarters in a while, but they weren't able to slam the door shut. Their bench hasn't been nearly as productive as last season. "There has to be a sense of urgency but I don't think we're playing that way... If you don't have a consistent level of urgency then you are going to lose," Draymond Green said after their loss in Chicago. He continued: "I think the point [where we'll turn a corner] will come, but you've got to build toward it. You can't take two steps forward, or three steps back. It's got to be a constant build ... that constant build has not started." Golden State is far from the first team with title aspirations to be treading water at the midway point of the season. Just a year ago, the Celtics found themselves with a 25-25 record through 50 games. - ESPN.com

The New York Knicks announced Thursday afternoon that center Mitchell Robinson had successful surgery to repair a right thumb fracture he suffered in Wednesday night's loss to the Washington Wizards. The team said Robinson would be evaluated on his progress toward returning in three weeks. - ESPN.com

Brooklyn Nets' Ben Simmons' struggles continued during a 117-112 loss to the Phoenix Suns on Thursday night in which he was ejected for arguing with referee Eric Lewis after playing just 18 minutes. The loss was the fourth straight for the Nets, who continue to flounder without star forward Kevin Durant, who is out for several more weeks because of an MCL sprain in his right knee. Nets coach Jacque Vaughn, when asked how the team could get Simmons back on track, pointed out that his struggles are coming on "both sides of the basketball." - ESPN.com

NBA superstar Luka Doncic's new MASSIVE whip came with a hefty price tag ... 'cause TMZ Sports is told the Dallas Mavericks hooper paid more than a quarter million bucks for his fully decked-out Hellfire Apocalypse truck!!! The 3-time All-Star had social media buzzing when he showed up to American Airlines Center for Wednesday night's matchup against the Atlanta Hawks in his new 6-wheeler ... and as it turns out, it's even more epic than you could imagine. - TMZ.com



THURSDAY'S NBA RUMORS

Desmond Bane scored 25 points, Ja Morant had 24 and the Memphis Grizzlies won their 11th straight game to match the franchise record, beating the Cleveland Cavaliers 115-114 on Wednesday night. Steven Adams tipped in the winner with 16 seconds left. Adams was in position to tip in a miss by Morant. "[Adams] has been doing what he's been doing all season ... manning the boards," Morant said. "He got us the win." - AP via ESPN.com

"If it's with this personnel, then you've got to keep asking or demanding for those guys to play defense," [Mavericks head coach Jason] Kidd said when asked about potential solutions for Dallas' defensive woes. "It's not just the offensive end. Tonight, we gave up 130 points and a team shot 57 percent. It's a shootaround. In this league, if you do that, no matter if you have Luka or Kareem or LeBron, you're going to lose. It doesn't matter how many points you score, you're always going to be short. "So until we put a better effort into playing defense and understanding what we have to do, we're going to score 120, but we're going to give up 130, 140. One night we might give up 150, but we'll be fine because we scored, so it doesn't look too bad." - ESPN.com

The Washington Wizards got star guard Bradley Beal back on the court and got themselves back in the win column on Wednesday night. Beal, who had missed the prior five games with a left hamstring strain, returned and finished with 18 points, four rebounds and four assists in 29 minutes against the New York Knicks, leading Washington to a wire-to-wire 116-105 victory at Madison Square Garden. "It was great," Beal said. "It was good to be able to just be back out there with the guys and get the feel of the game. I played my minutes well, played them hard, and just tried to get us a win. "It just felt good to be back, honestly." - ESPN.com

Knicks guard Jalen Brunson is one of the top current athletes on the New York scene, but he won’t be rooting for the New York Giants on Saturday night. Brunson was seen wearing a jersey of Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts before the Knicks’ ugly 116-105 loss to the Wizards on Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden. - NY Post

It’s been rare enough that the Lakers hit a big shot in a critical moment this season. For a fleeting instant, Kendrick Nunn’s 3-pointer felt something like that. An almost impossible-to-win situation seemed a little closer when Nunn launched a shot with De’Aaron Fox at his side, bringing the deficit to a single point with seven seconds left. But Richaun Holmes – and the game itself – slipped just a little beyond Max Christie’s grasp on the ensuing inbounds pass, and a split-second decision by the rookie to foul ultimately cost them. The Lakers have lost three of their past four games – each in excruciating fashion. But in the latest, a 116-111 defeat to the Sacramento Kings, a clear-path foul by a rookie guard felt, at least, on theme in a season in which the Lakers have underwhelmed to close out tight contests. - OC Register


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