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Latest Updates

 

Report: Rockets looking to clear roster spot for Smith via trade


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) The Rockets are shopping players from the bottom third of their roster Wednesday to clear a spot for small forward Josh Smith, ESPN reports.

Smith committed to joining the Rockets early Wednesday and passed through waivers later in the day, but now the team needs to make some room on the roster to bring him in. The candidates to move include Clint Capela, Isaiah Canaan, Tarik Black, Nick Johnson and Joey Dorsey.

Smith is expected to join the starting lineup once he's ready to roll. He averaged 13.1 points, 7.2 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 1.7 blocks and 1.3 steals in 28 game with the Pistons.


Josh Smith excited to reunite with Dwight Howard on Rockets


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Small forward Josh Smith is excited to be joining the Rockets and to reunite with good friend Dwight Howard, FOX26 in Houston reports.

"It's an exciting time for me," Smith told FOX26 Sports. "Being able to be reunited with a good friend and one of the best teammates I ever played with, I think we can definitely do something special. Playing beside the best two-guard in the game right now in James Harden, what more can you ask for."

Smith and Howard played on the same AAU team in Atlanta.

"I think I can add to their toughness," Smith said. "I think I can add to their versatility at the four position, being able to pass the basketball and score the ball down low. Just add another basketball IQ, which will help when we make it to the postseason."

Smith averaged 13.1 points, 7.2 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 1.7 blocks and 1.3 steals in 28 game with the Pistons before being waived Monday.


Report: Magic to send Devyn Marble to NBADL


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) The Magic plan to send shooting guard Devyn Marble to the Erie BayHawks of the NBA Developmental League in the next few days, the Orlando Sentinel reports.

Marble has played in four games this season but hasn't seen any action since straining his right rotator cuff in early November. Now healthy, the guard doesn't have a clear path to playing time with the Magic.


Spurs SF Kawhi Leonard (hand) ruled out Thursday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) The Spurs have ruled out small forward Kawhi Leonard for Thursday's game against the Thunder with a bruised right hand.

Leonard believed he'd be able to play Thursday, according to a previous report, but coach Gregg Popovich made it clear Monday he didn't expect to have the 2014 NBA Finals MVP available. Leonard has averaged 15.2 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 22 games.

The Spurs are a 5-point favorite at home against the Thunder Thursday, per Vegas Insider.


Hornets' Lance Stephenson, Jannero Pargo out Friday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) The Hornets have ruled Lance Stephenson out for Friday's game against the Thunder due to a pelvic strain, the team announced Wednesday. Stephenson will be missing his fifth straight game with the injury.

The team also ruled out point guard Jannero Pargo due to lower back soreness. Pargo has made just nine appearances this season, averaging 4.6 points on 42.9 percent shooting.

Center Al Jefferson is the third player on the injury report for Friday's game, being listed as probable to play with a left groin strain. He was able to play through the injury Tuesday, scoring 12 points in 31 minutes of action.


Warriors C Festus Ezeli (ankle) questionable Thursday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Warriors center Festus Ezeli is questionable to play in Thursday's game against the Clippers due to a mild left ankle sprain, the San Jose Mercury News reports.

Ezeli suffered the injury in the third quarter of Tuesday's loss to the Lakers and didn't return but did say after the game that he could have come back into the game. The center also indicated Tuesday that he expected to play Thursday.

The Warriors are a 2-point underdog in Los Angeles against the Clippers Thursday, per Vegas Insider.


Knicks' Carmelo Anthony, Amar'e Stoudemire to play Thursday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Knicks forwards Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire indicated that they will play in Thursday's game against the Wizards, Newsday reports.

Anthony dealt with knee soreness last week and has missed two of his team's last seven games. Stoudemire was given the team's last two games off to rest.

The Knicks are a 5-point home underdog according to Vegas Insider.


Thunder list Kevin Durant (ankle) as out for Christmas Day game


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) The Thunder listed forward Kevin Durant as out for Thursday's game at San Antonio, reports The Oklahoman. "His status could change, but for now the team is listing him as out," the paper said.

Durant apparently will miss his fourth straight game with a sprained ankle. He's averaging 22.4 points, 5.0 rebounds and 3.6 assists in nine games played.


Heat F Chris Bosh (calf) expected to sit out on Christmas


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he doesn't expect forward Chris Bosh (calf) to play Thursday against the Cavaliers, reports Yahoo Sports. Bosh has missed six straight games with the injury.

He's averaging 21.6 points and 8.2 rebounds in 23 games.


J.R. Smith not looking good for Thursday's game


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Knicks guard J.R. Smith doesn't expect to be ready to play Thursday against the Wizards, reports Newsday. A heel injury has sidelined Smith for seven straight games.

He's averaging 10.3 points and 3.3 assists in 25.1 minutes per game.


Report: Josh Smith commits to sign with Rockets


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Forward Josh Smith, stunningly waived by the Pistons on Monday, has committed to sign with the Rockets when he clears waivers at 5 p.m ET, reports Yahoo Sports. An earlier report indicated Houston promised Smith he'd be a starter.

Smith averaged 13.1 points and 7.2 rebounds for Detroit while shooting a career-low 39.1 percent in 28 games. The Rockets were among several teams reportedly interested in landing Smith.


Suns send Anthony Tolliver to Detroit for Tony Mitchell


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) The Suns traded forward Anthony Tolliver to the Pistons for forward Tony Mitchell, reports the Arizona Republic. Phoenix is expected to waive Mitchell.

The Suns made the move because Tolliver had fallen out of their rotation. Now they have $6.1 million in cap space, the report said.


Report: Cavs C Anderson Varejao (Achilles) out for the season


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Cavaliers starting center Anderson Varejao will miss the rest of the season after landing awkwardly and tearing his Achilles tendon in Tuesday's win over the Timberwolves, reports Yahoo Sports. Varejao was averaging 9.8 points and 6.5 rebounds in 24.5 minutes per game.

Tristan Thompson is expected to move into the starting lineup. He's averaged 8.8 points and 7.1 rebounds off the bench. Cleveland visits the Heat on Thursday.


Hollins: Deron Williams will come off bench when he returns


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Nets coach Lionel Hollins said point guard Deron Williams will come off the bench when he returns from his strained calf, reports ESPN.com. Williams declined to talk to reporters.

Williams practiced Wednesday, a sign he might be available Friday when the Nets visit the Celtics. He's missed two straight games since suffering the injury last Friday against Cleveland.

In Williams' absence, Jarrett Jack started and contributed 32 points and 18 assists in wins over Detroit and Denver. Williams is averaging 15.6 points and 6.8 assists in 25 games.


Lakers to cut Kobe Bryant's minutes moving forward


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Lakers coach Byron Scott plans to reduce Kobe Bryant's minutes to 32 per game, including sitting him at the end of the first and third quarters, reports the Los Angeles Daily News. Bryant is shooting a career-low 37.2 percent while averaging 35.4 minutes.

Scott also indicated he'll run fewer plays for Bryant and that he's asked his 36-year-old star to defer more to his teammates. Scott said Bryant "didn't embrace the idea immediately" but came around after the coach explained his thought process, per the paper.

"Then he was more like, 'OK coach, whatever you want to do, I'm on board,'" Scott said. "That's something I really appreciated."

Bryant sat out his first game of the season Tuesday, and the Lakers upset the Warriors. Bryant is expected to play Thursday at Chicago, with his status for Friday's game at Dallas to be determined.

Scott said Bryant's fatigue and recent "inefficient play" prompted the reevaluation, according to the paper. Bryant still ranks third in the NBA in scoring (24.6).


Report: Rockets assure Josh Smith he'd be a starter


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) The Rockets are assuring former Pistons forward Josh Smith he'd be a starter if he signs with Houston, reports ESPN's Marc Stein. Detroit waived Smith on Monday and he's expected to clear waivers at 5 p.m. ET Wednesday, freeing him to sign with any team.

Houston, Miami, Dallas, Sacramento and the Clippers all are reportedly interested in landing Smith, who was shooting a career-low 39.1 percent while averaging 13.1 points, 7.2 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 1.7 blocks.


Kawhi Leonard tells friends he thinks he can play Thursday


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard, who's missed four straight games with a torn ligament in his right hand, "has told some of his closest associates he thinks he will be ready to suit up for the Spurs' Christmas Day game against the Oklahoma City Thunder," reports the San Antonio Express-News.

Coach Gregg Popovich has the final say, however. On Monday he "made a Christmas Day appearance by his defensive star seem about as likely as flying reindeer," the paper said. Assuming Leonard is held out, rookie Kyle Anderson and swingman Danny Green would defend Thunder forward Kevin Durant if Durant returns from an ankle sprain that has sidelined him three straight games, the paper added.

Leonard, the 2014 NBA Finals MVP, is averaging 15.2 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 22 games this season.


Kobe Bryant will play Thursday, uncertain for Friday


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant, who skipped Tuesday's win over the Warriors to rest, will play Thursday at Chicago, coach Byron Scott confirmed to ESPN.com. Bryant's status for Friday's game at Dallas is to be determined, the coach added.

Bryant ranks third in the league in scoring (24.6). The 36-year-old sat out Tuesday for the first time all season.


Nuggets SF Danilo Gallinari out a month following knee surgery


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Nuggets small forward Danilo Gallinari announced on his Facebook page he had successful surgery to fix a torn meniscus and that he'll miss a month, reports the Italian sports website Sportando. Gallinari averaged 7.8 points in 18.8 minutes over 24 games this season.

Gallinari scored a season-high 19 points against the Pacers on Saturday night before being diagnosed with the injury.


Cavaliers' Anderson Varejao to have MRI on Wednesday


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Cavaliers center Anderson Varejao will have an MRI on his foot on Wednesday, according to ESPN.

Varejao left Tuesday night's after landing awkwardly on his foot. He did not return, and left the arena on crutches after the game. Varejao is averaging 10.0 points and 6.6 rebounds per game. If he has to miss significant time, it's believed Tristan Thompson would step into the starting role. 


Lakers' Carlos Boozer narrowly misses double-double


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Lakers forward Carlos Boozer narrowly missed a double-double on Tuesday against the Warriors.

Boozer shot 8-11 from the field. He made two free throws, finishing with 18 points. Boozer just missed out on a double-double, coming up with nine rebounds. He also added three assists and a block. 


Warriors' Stephen Curry scores 22 points on Tuesday


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Warriors guard Stephen Curry scored 22 points on Tuesday against the Lakers.

Curry shot 10-14 from the field, including 2-5 from beyond the arc. He did not have a free throw attempt during the contest. Curry finished with six assists and three steals. 


Hawks list Pero Antic as questionable for Friday's game


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Hawks forward Pero Antic is listed as questionable for Friday's game against the Bucks.

Antic was active for Tuesday's game, but did not play due to a coach's decision. He's been battling an ankle injury. 


Trail Blazers' Meyers Leonard does not play on Tuesday


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12/24/2014) Trail Blazers center Meyers Leonard did not play on Tuesday.

Leonard had been filling in for LaMarcus Aldridge recently, but with Aldridge back, there was no need for Leonard to play. Leonard's absence was due to a coach's decision. He's averaging four points over 10 games played. 


Dirk Nowitzki scores 22 points in losing effort against the Suns


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(12/23/2014) Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki scored 22 points for Dallas on 7 for 12 shooting from the field in the loss Tuesday to the Suns. 

Nowitzki went 2 for 3 from three-point range and added five rebounds.

It was Nowitzki's first game with 20-plus points in the Mavericks' last five contests.