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  • Antetokounmpo, Jokic, Curry, Doncic, Leonard named first-team All-NBA
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, June 15, 2021

    League MVP Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets and unanimous selection Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks made the All-NBA first team, announced Tuesday.

    • They were joined on the first team by Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, Dallas Mavericks forward Luka Doncic and Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard.

      Despite being a finalist for the MVP award, Philadelphia 76ers Joel Embiid was only a second-team All-NBA selection due to position limitations -- each team only featured one center, and Jokic beat out Embiid in votes.

      Embiid was joined on the second team by Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard, Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul, Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James and New York Knicks forward Julius Randle.

      The five to make the third team were guards Kyrie Irving (Brooklyn) and Bradley Beal (Washington), forwards Jimmy Butler (Miami) and Paul George (Los Angeles Clippers) and center Rudy Gobert (Utah).

      It marked the first career All-NBA selections for Randle and Beal. James notched his 17th All-NBA selection and Paul earned his 10th.

      The next two guards receiving votes were the Wizards' Russell Westbrook and the Nets' James Harden, falling just behind their respective teammates, Beal and Irving. Forwards who narrowly missed the cut included the Celtics' Jayson Tatum, the Pelicans' Zion Williamson and the Nets' Kevin Durant.

      Harden and Tatum each earned two first-team votes despite not accumulating enough total votes for inclusion on any of the three teams.

      Jokic earned 99 first-team votes and one second-team vote to fall just shy of joining Antetokounmpo as a unanimous pick. Curry earned 98 first-team votes and two second-team votes, earning his seventh career All-NBA selection.

      Jokic became the first second-round draft pick in league history to be named MVP. Jokic started all 72 games for the Nuggets and averaged 26.4 points, 10.8 rebounds and 8.3 assists per game -- all setting or matching career highs.

      The Serbian shot 56.6 percent from the floor, including 38.8 percent from 3-point range, and added 1.3 steals and 0.7 blocks per contest.

      Antetokounmpo, the league MVP in 2019 and 2020, averaged 28.1 points, 11.0 rebounds, 5.9 assists, 1.2 blocks and 1.2 steals per contest over 61 games for Milwaukee.

      Curry won the NBA scoring title by leading the league with 32.0 points per game a year after suffering a broken left hand.

      --Field Level Media

  • James Harden (hamstring) will play, start for Nets in Game 5
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, June 15, 2021

    Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden will return Tuesday in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Milwaukee Bucks, with the Nets announcing shortly before the game that he will start.

    • Harden hasn't appeared since the first minute of the series, when he suffered a hamstring injury and left Game 1. He missed Games 2, 3 and 4 with right hamstring tightness.

      The nine-time All-Star returns just as another member of Brooklyn's trio of stars, guard Kyrie Irving, will miss Game 5 with an ankle sprain.

      The Nets upgraded Harden to doubtful, then from doubtful to questionable, between Games 4 and 5.

      Harden averaged 24.6 points, 10.8 assists and 7.9 rebounds per game with Brooklyn and the Houston Rockets this season. He played 36 of his 44 games this season with the Nets after being traded in January.

      The Nets and Bucks are tied two games apiece entering Tuesday's game in Brooklyn.

      --Field Level Media

  • Hawks expect De'Andre Hunter to be ready for camp after surgery
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, June 15, 2021

    Atlanta Hawks forward De'Andre Hunter underwent successful surgery Tuesday to repair a torn lateral meniscus in his right knee.

    • "Hunter will miss the remainder of the postseason and is expected to make a full recovery in advance of training camp," the Hawks said in a statement.

      The Hawks announced last week that Hunter would require surgery.

      Hunter started all five games of Atlanta's first-round playoff series against the New York Knicks, but began to experience swelling in his knee ahead of Game 1 against Philadelphia in the conference semifinal.

      He had arthroscopic surgery plus a nonsurgical procedure on the same knee during the regular season and missed three months of action because of discomfort and swelling.

      The fourth overall draft pick in 2019 out of Virginia, Hunter played just 23 games (19 starts) in his second NBA season and posted averages of 15.0 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.9 assists per contest while shooting 48.4 percent from the field.

      --Field Level Media

  • NBA releases list of 69 players attending draft combine
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, June 15, 2021

    Southern California forward Evan Mobley and NBA G League prospects Jalen Green and Jonathan Kuminga are among the 69 players the league expects to attend the NBA draft combine in Chicago from June 21-27.

    • Last year's combine was reformatted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Prospects had interviews via videoconference and took part in individual drills in NBA facilities around the country.

      But this year's event is back to a central location, Wintrust Arena and the Marriott Marquis in Chicago. Teams will be able to conduct interviews with prospects. Five-on-five games among prospects are set to make a return alongside shooting, strength and agility drills, all during the heart of the combine from June 22-25.

      Some players attending the NBA G League Elite Camp in Chicago from June 19-21 will be selected to join the combine as well.

      Two top prospects, Oklahoma State's Cade Cunningham and Gonzaga's Jalen Suggs, will not attend the combine. Other stars from the 2020-21 college basketball season on the list expected to attend include Davion Mitchell (Baylor), James Bouknight (UConn), Ayo Dosunmu (Illinois), Corey Kispert (Gonzaga), Johnny Juzang (UCLA) and Max Abmas (Oral Roberts).

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: Damian Lillard, Draymond Green join Team USA
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, June 15, 2021

    Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard and Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green are on the roster for Team USA entering training camp in Las Vegas next month, The Athletic reported Tuesday.

    • Lillard is a first-time Olympics participant and Green was part of the 2016 gold medal team that went 8-0.

      Lillard was ticketed for the camp roster in 2016 but withdrew from consideration.

      Team USA begins training camp in Las Vegas on July 6.

      Players are not required to confirm participation until the end of their season.

      All-Stars Stephen Curry and Jayson Tatum are among the players who have said they plan to participate in Tokyo.

      Lillard, 30, averaged 28.8 points, 7.5 assists and 4.2 rebounds per game this season.

      Green, 31, averaged 7.0, 8.9 assists and 7.1 rebounds this season.

      --Field Level Media

  • Nets' James Harden upgraded to questionable vs. Bucks
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, June 15, 2021

    The Brooklyn Nets upgraded guard James Harden's status from out to questionable for Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series against the visiting Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday.

    • Per ESPN, Harden did not have an issue with his injured right hamstring during the morning shootaround. The Nets initially ruled out Harden for the game on Monday.

      However, he was upgraded to doubtful before shootaround at Barclays Center on Tuesday. After the workout, he was upgraded again.

      Harden, 31, played only 43 seconds in Game 1 before pulling up lame. Brooklyn won that contest as well as Game 2 before dropping the next two tilts in the best-of-seven series.

      The nine-time All-Star and three-time NBA scoring champion averaged 24.6 points, 10.9 assists and 8.5 rebounds in 36 games with Brooklyn in the regular season. He was acquired by the Nets in a Jan. 13 trade with the Houston Rockets.

      The Nets will play Tuesday's contest without guard Kyrie Irving after an MRI confirmed that he sustained a sprained right ankle in Game 4 on Sunday.

      --Field Level Media

  • Clippers' Kawhi Leonard sits late with apparent right knee injury
    By Field Level Media / Tuesday, June 15, 2021

    Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard sat out the final 4:35 of Los Angeles' 118-104 victory over the Utah Jazz on Monday with an apparent right knee injury.

    • Leonard grabbed for the knee after bumping into Utah's Joe Ingles, and he departed less than a minute later.

      A short time later, Leonard spoke to a trainer and then put on his mask and watched the remainder of the game from the bench.

      After the game, a TNT reporter asked Leonard if he was concerned.

      "No, I'll be good," Leonard said.

      Clippers coach Tyronn Lue didn't know any details about Leonard right after the game, but he said of his roster, "I think everybody's pretty good."

      Leonard finished with 31 points and seven rebounds as the Clippers tied the best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal series at two games apiece.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: NBA explores limiting act-of-shooting leeway
    By Field Level Media / Monday, June 14, 2021

    NBA owners may be asked to limit the motions that players can take and still be considered in the act of shooting, ESPN reported Monday.

    • The proposed rule tweak is based on plays when shooters substantially varied their shots as they attempt to initiate contact with defenders and draw fouls.

      In a meeting Monday, the league's competition committee explored how much time and how much movement a player can employ in shooting the ball, according to ESPN.

      The committee includes some owners, general managers, coaches, players and referees. Teams were provided with a video that shows some of the discussed maneuvers, with players leaning to one side or far forward or backward to create contact with a defender while under the guise of trying to take a shot, ESPN reported.

      A timeline would include presenting the rule change to the NBA's Board of Governors for approval over the summer, with implementation starting with Las Vegas summer league in August and on into the start of next season.

      --Field Level Media

  • Rudy Gobert, Ben Simmons unanimous All-Defensive First Team choices
    By Field Level Media / Monday, June 14, 2021

    Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert and Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons were unanimous choices for the NBA All-Defensive First Team, the league announced Monday.

    • Gobert and Simmons were chosen on all 100 ballots and received 200 points apiece. Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (176 points, 80 first-team votes) and the Milwaukee Bucks combo of guard Jrue Holiday (157, 65) and Giannis Antetokounmpo (135, 43) also were first-team selections.

      Gobert, who was recently named NBA Defensive Player of the Year for the third time in the past four seasons, is a first-team all-defensive choice for the fifth straight season. He blocked a league-high 190 shots in 71 regular-season games.

      Simmons made the All-Defensive First Team for the second straight season, and he was runner-up to Gobert for Defensive Player of the Year honors. Simmons had 93 steals in 58 games.

      Green is a defensive first-team choice for the fourth time and Antetokounmpo was chosen for the third time. Antetokounmpo was Defensive Player of the Year last season. Holiday was a first-team all-defensive selection for the first time, and he made the first team for the third time

      Holiday received his second defensive first-team honor.

      The second team consists of the Miami Heat combo of forward Bam Adebayo (111, 37) and guard Jimmy Butler (111, 37), the 76ers due of center Joel Embiid (87, eight) and guard Matisse Thybulle (63, 3) and Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard (43, 8).

      --Field Level Media

  • Nets without Kyrie Irving, James Harden for Game 5 vs. Bucks
    By Field Level Media / Monday, June 14, 2021

    The Brooklyn Nets said star point guard Kyrie Irving will not play in Game 5 of the team's Eastern Conference semifinal series Tuesday against the Milwaukee Bucks because of a right ankle sprain.

    • The Nets forged a 2-2 tie in the series with a 107-96 victory on Sunday, despite Irving leaving in the second quarter with his ankle injury. He scored 11 points with five rebounds and two assists in just 17 minutes and has averaged 20.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.3 assists in the series.

      The Nets will also be without fellow All-Star James Harden, who injured his hamstring after playing just one minute of Game 1 and has not seen action in the series since.

      The pivotal Game 5 will take place Tuesday in Brooklyn.

      Irving had X-rays on his ankle Sunday that came back negative. His timetable for a return is not known. Harden has been working out on a court in recent days, but his status remains up in the air for Game 5.

      --Field Level Media

  • Jazz G Mike Conley (hamstring) ruled out for Game 4
    By Field Level Media / Monday, June 14, 2021

    Utah Jazz point guard Mike Conley was ruled out of Monday's Western Conference Game 4 in Los Angeles against the Clippers as he continues to recover from a mild right hamstring strain.

    • The Jazz have a 2-1 lead in the series.

      Conley has yet to play in the series. He sustained the injury in Game 5 of Utah's first-round playoff series against the Memphis Grizzlies and hasn't played since.

      The 33-year-old was sidelined on two occasions with right hamstring injuries during the regular season.

      Conley averaged 16.2 points, 6.0 assists and 3.5 rebounds in 51 games (all starts) of Utah's 72 during the regular season. He was named an All-Star for the first time in his 14-year career.

      Utah prevailed 112-109 in the series opener on Tuesday in Salt Lake City and followed up with a 117-111 home victory on Thursday. The Clippers won Game 3 on their home court Saturday, 132-106.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: Blazers interviewing Mike D'Antoni on Monday
    By Field Level Media / Monday, June 14, 2021

    The Portland Trail Blazers are interviewing Brooklyn Nets assistant Mike D'Antoni on Monday for their head coaching vacancy, ESPN reported.

    • D'Antoni, 70, is in his first season on Steve Nash's staff in Brooklyn. The two-time NBA Coach of the Year owns a 672-527 record in 16 seasons as a head coach with the Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, Phoenix Suns and Denver Nuggets.

      The Trail Blazers also plan to interview Los Angeles Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups and San Antonio Spurs assistant Becky Hammon this week, per the report.

      Portland parted ways with Terry Stotts earlier this month. Stotts, 63, is the second-winningest coach in franchise history with a 402-318 mark, behind only Jack Ramsay. He led Portland to eight consecutive playoff appearances.

      Blazers star Damian Lillard has expressed that he wants the new hire to meet his approval. Lillard listed Lakers assistant Jason Kidd as a candidate he'd endorse, but Kidd pulled his named out of the running.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: Magic to interview Jason Kidd for coaching job
    By Field Level Media / Monday, June 14, 2021

    The Orlando Magic will interview Jason Kidd for their coaching vacancy this week, FOX Sports reported Monday.

    • The Magic requested permission from the Lakers to interview the current Los Angeles assistant coach and it was granted, per the report.

      Last week, Kidd withdrew his name from consideration for Portland's coaching vacancy after Trail Blazers even after star Damian Lillard publicly expressed his desire to hire the 48-year-old Hall of Famer.

      Kidd compiled a 183-190 record in five seasons as head coach with Brooklyn (2013-14) and Milwaukee (2014-18).

      The point guard was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2018 after a 19-year NBA career with the Dallas Mavericks, Phoenix Suns, New Jersey Nets and New York Knicks. The 10-time All-Star retired after the 2012-13 campaign and ranks No. 2 in NBA history in assists (12,091) and steals (2,684).

      The Magic fired Steve Clifford earlier this month after finishing 21-51 in 2020-21. Clifford compiled a 96-131 record in three seasons in Orlando.

      --Field Level Media

  • Nuggets star center Nikola Jokic ejected after flagrant foul 2
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, June 13, 2021

    Denver All-Star center and newly crowned NBA Most Valuable Player Nikola Jokic was ejected from Game 4 of the Nuggets' series against the visiting Phoenix Suns for a flagrant foul 2 call with 3:52 left in the third quarter.

    • With the Nuggets down 83-75 and trailing in the series 3-0, Jokic apparently was frustrated at not drawing a foul on a 12-foot jumper.

      After the Suns' Mikal Bridges grabbed the rebound and passed the ball out along the baseline to Cameron Payne, Jokic lunged toward Payne smacked both the ball and Payne in the face.

      Payne went down on the court, causing Suns star Devin Booker to confront Jokic after the play, as players from both teams quickly separated Jokic and Booker.

      After several minutes down on the court, Payne stayed in the game and hit both free throws from the flagrant foul. Officials cited the "windup, impact and follow-through" for the flagrant 2 foul, requiring an ejection, as opposed to a flagrant 1.

      Jokic finished the night with 22 points, 11 rebounds and four assists in 28 minutes. In his sixth season in the NBA, all with the Nuggets, he averaged 26.4 points, 10.8 rebounds and 8.3 assists.

      The third-seeded Nuggets defeated the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs in seven games.

      --Field Level Media

  • Kyrie Irving leaves Game 4 of Nets-Bucks with ankle sprain
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, June 13, 2021

    Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving left in the second quarter of Sunday's Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Milwaukee Bucks with a sprained right ankle.

    • The Nets ruled Irving out for the rest of the game, which Milwaukee went on to win, 107-96, leveling the series at two games apiece with Game 5 Tuesday night in Brooklyn. Nets coach Steve Nash later said that X-rays on Irving's ankle came back negative.

      Irving was injured with 6:04 remaining after converting a layup that got Brooklyn within 44-40. After scoring the basket, he landed awkwardly on the foot of Milwaukee forward Giannis Antetokounmpo.

      Irving stayed down on the floor as play continued on the other end and the Nets were able to get a timeout to attend to him with 5:52 left in the half. After the timeout, Irving limped back to the locker room while putting a small amount of weight on his ankle.

      Irving scored 11 points on 5 of 11 shooting in 17 minutes before getting hurt. In the first eight games of the postseason, Irving averaged 24.1 points on 47.4 percent shooting.

      Irving is the second member of Brooklyn's star trio to suffer an injury during the series. In Game 1, James Harden injured his right hamstring on a drive to the basket 43 seconds in and has missed the past three games with right hamstring tightness.

      --Field Level Media

  • Nets F Jeff Green (foot) available for Game 4 vs. Bucks
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, June 13, 2021

    Forward Jeff Green will be available to play Sunday in Game 4 of the visiting Brooklyn Nets' second-round series against the Milwaukee Bucks.

    • Green, 34, has not played since May 25, when he left the Nets' 130-108 victory over the Boston Celtics in Game 2 of their first-round series with a left plantar fascia strain. Green averaged 4.5 points in the opening two games against the Celtics.

      In 68 regular-season games in his first campaign with the Nets, Green averaged 11 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.6 assists on 49.2 percent shooting from the floor, including a career-best 41.2 percent from three-point range.

      The fifth overall pick of the 2007 NBA Draft by the Celtics, Green was immediately traded to the then-Seattle SuperSonics and has played for 10 teams in his 13-year NBA career. In 976 career regular-season games, Green has averaged 12.8 points, 4.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists while shooting 44.4 percent from the field and 34 percent from beyond the arc.

      In other injury news, James Harden remains out for Game 4 against the Bucks with a right hamstring injury. Harden has not played since suffering the injury 43 seconds into Game 1, which the Nets won, 115-107.

      --Field Level Media

  • Nets security guard barred from games vs. Bucks
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, June 13, 2021

    A Brooklyn Nets security guard who made contact with Milwaukee Bucks forward P.J. Tucker in Game 3 will be barred from working the rest of the Eastern Conference semifinal series, according to ESPN.

    • The incident occurred after Tucker fouled Nets forward Kevin Durant late in the third quarter of Friday's Game 3, which Milwaukee won 86-83.

      The former Texas Longhorns forwards got in each other's faces after the foul call and the guard rushed in to help separate the two, appearing to push Tucker out of the way in the process.

      "It's kind of crazy that he just attacked P.J., pushed him specifically," Bucks forward Bobby Portis said. "Most of the time, team security comes in and gets in between everybody, so (he) probably did cross the boundaries with that."

      The security guard is reportedly Durant's personal bodyguard, although he's employed by the Nets.

      "Well, I know KD, and I know his security guard, so I knew that was his security guard," said Bucks guard Jrue Holiday, per ESPN. "I guess, for the most part, maybe my man was doing his job. I don't know. He bumped Tuck kind of hard, though. I don't know if he's supposed to do that."

      The Nets lead the series 2-1. Game 4 is Sunday afternoon.

      --Field Level Media

  • Jazz G Donovan Mitchell (ankle) says he'll be ready for Game 4
    By Field Level Media / Sunday, June 13, 2021

    Nagging pain in his right ankle won't stop Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell from suiting up for Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals against the Los Angeles Clippers.

    • Mitchell scored 30 points in 32 minutes for the top-seeded Jazz but missed the final seven minutes of Saturday's 132-106 loss after tweaking the ankle.

      Game 4 is Monday night at Los Angeles, and he insisted he'll be ready to play.

      "It's been just trying to manage it," Mitchell said. "I don't really know what else to tell you. I don't want to say too much. It was just the landing, but I'm good. I'll be ready for Game 4."

      Mitchell says he could have come back into Saturday's game, but the lopsided score made it pointless.

      "I feel like I was able to go back, but no need to risk it down 16, 18 at that point," Mitchell said.

      Mitchell missed the final 16 games of the regular season and Utah's playoff opener with a sprain in the same ankle.

      He appeared to re-injure the ankle with seven minutes remaining and left the contest. The Clippers took advantage by scoring 10 straight points, making it 116-95 with 5:22 left.

      Mitchell was pleading with Jazz coach Quin Snyder during the latter portion of the Los Angeles run to let him go back into the game but was turned down.

      "He could have gone back in the game, but at that point, the lead had stretched," Snyder said. "In fact, while we were talking, I think Kawhi (Leonard) hit a 3. That was my decision not to put him back in at that point. The game had gotten away from us at that point, but he's fine."

      Mitchell, who is averaging 32.3 points per game in the playoffs, joined Utah legend Karl Malone as the lone players in franchise history to score at least 30 points in five straight postseason contests. Malone did it six straight times (three in 1995, three in 1996).

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: Becky Hammon, Dawn Staley among Trail Blazers' candidates
    By Field Level Media / Saturday, June 12, 2021

    San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon is a prime candidate for the Portland Trail Blazers' head coaching vacancy, The Athletic reported Saturday.

    • The outlet reported that Hammon will also interview for the Orlando Magic opening.

      Hammon isn't the only woman under consideration by Portland. Highly successful South Carolina women's coach Dawn Staley also is in the mix.

      There has never been a women's head coach in NBA history. Hammon did fill in as coach for two-plus quarters on Dec. 30 when Gregg Popovich got ejected during the second quarter of a 121-107 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers.

      Hammon, 44, has been on the Spurs' staff since 2014. Staley, 51, guided South Carolina to the 2017 NCAA women's title and to two other Final Four appearances.

      The Trail Blazers are also reportedly considering Brooklyn Nets assistant Mike D'Antoni, Los Angeles Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups and Spurs executive Brent Barry. D'Antoni, with a 672-527 record, is the only person in the mix with NBA head coaching experience.

      Portland star Damian Lillard has expressed that he wants the new hire to meet his approval. Lillard earlier listed Los Angeles Lakers assistant Jason Kidd as a candidate he'd endorse to replace the fired Terry Stotts but Kidd pull his named out of the running.

      --Field Level Media

  • 76ers' Danny Green (calf) out at least two weeks
    By Field Level Media / Saturday, June 12, 2021

    Philadelphia swingman Danny Green is expected to miss at least two weeks with a right calf strain.

    • The 76ers said an MRI on Saturday confirmed the extent of the injury.

      Green, 33, sustained the injury during the first quarter of Philadelphia's 127-111 victory over the Atlanta Hawks in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series. The 76ers hold a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series heading into Game 4 at Atlanta on Monday.

      Matisse Thybulle and Furkan Korkmaz are likely candidates to replace Green in the starting lineup.

      Green averaged 9.5 points, 3.8 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 69 games during the regular season.

      A three-time NBA champion, Green has averaged 9.0 points, 3.5 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 757 career games (681 starts) with the Cleveland Cavaliers, San Antonio Spurs, Toronto Raptors, Los Angeles Lakers and 76ers.

      --Field Level Media

  • Jazz PG Mike Conley (hamstring) out again vs. Clippers
    By Field Level Media / Saturday, June 12, 2021

    Utah Jazz point guard Mike Conley will miss Saturday night's game against the host Los Angeles Clippers due to his mild right hamstring strain.

    • Conley also missed Games 1 and 2 of the Western Conference semifinals due to the same injury. The 33-year-old was injured during Game 5 of Utah's first-round series against the Memphis Grizzlies.

      He was sidelined on two occasions with right hamstring injuries during the regular season.

      Conley averaged 16.2 points, 6.0 assists and 3.5 rebounds in 51 games (all starts) of Utah's 72 during the regular season. He was named an All-Star for the first time in his 14-year career.

      Utah prevailed 112-109 in the series opener on Tuesday in Salt Lake City and followed up with a 117-111 home victory on Thursday.

      --Field Level Media

  • Clippers' Serge Ibaka has back surgery, out for playoffs
    By Field Level Media / Friday, June 11, 2021

    Los Angeles Clippers forward/center Serge Ibaka underwent back surgery on Thursday and will miss the rest of the NBA playoffs.

    • The team announced Friday that Ibaka, 31, is expected to make a full recovery. He hasn't played since May 25 in Game 2 of the Clippers' first-round playoff series against the Dallas Mavericks.

      It marks the end of Ibaka's first season with the Clippers following stints with the Oklahoma City Thunder (2009-16), Orlando Magic (2016-17) and Toronto Raptors (2017-20). In 41 games (39 starts) for the Clippers in the regular season, Ibaka averaged 11.1 points per game -- his lowest average since 2012 -- along with 6.7 rebounds and 1.1 blocks.

      In two playoff games Ibaka totaled 10 points, four rebounds and three blocks in just more than 18 minutes.

      The Clippers are down two games to none to the Utah Jazz in the Western Conference semifinals, which continue Saturday with Game 3 in Los Angeles.

      --Field Level Media

  • Raptors' Pascal Siakam has shoulder surgery, out 5 months
    By Field Level Media / Friday, June 11, 2021

    Toronto Raptors forward Pascal Siakam is recovering from surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder.

    • The surgery was performed last week by Dr. Neal ElAttrache at Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles.

      The expected recovery and rehabilitation time for the procedure is approximately five months, the team said in a news release Friday.

      Siakam, 27, sustained the injury during a May 8 game against the Memphis Grizzlies. The Raptors lost that game and finished the season with a seven-game losing streak.

      He averaged 21.4 points, 7.2 rebounds and 4.5 assists in 56 starts this season, his fifth year with the Raptors.

      A first-round pick (27th overall) in 2016, Siakam was the NBA's Most Improved Player in 2018-19 and a first-time All-Star selection in 2019-20. He helped the Raptors win the 2019 NBA championship.

      Siakam's career averages include 14.3 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.7 assists in 332 games (238 starts).

      --Field Level Media

  • Five finalists named for NBA's inaugural social justice award
    By Field Level Media / Friday, June 11, 2021

    The NBA on Friday announced the five finalists for the inaugural Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion award.

    • Portland Trail Blazers forward Carmelo Anthony, Sacramento Kings forward Harrison Barnes, Philadelphia 76ers forward Tobias Harris, Milwaukee Bucks guard Jrue Holiday and Golden State Warriors forward Juan Toscano-Anderson were selected by a committee that included the award's namesake, the six-time NBA champion and the league's all-time leading scorer.

      The award "recognizes a current NBA player for pursuing social justice and advancing Abdul-Jabbar's life mission to engage, empower and drive equality for individuals and groups who have been historically marginalized or systemically disadvantaged," according to a news release from the NBA.

      The winner will be announced prior to Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals on TNT.

      Each finalist has selected an organization focused on advancing social justice. The winning player's organization will receive a $100,000 donation and the other finalists' causes will each receive $25,000.

      In addition to Abdul-Jabbar, the selection committee included Director of The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport Dr. Richard Lapchick, student activist Teyonna Lofton, National Urban League President and CEO Marc Morial, UnidosUS President and CEO Janet MurguĂ­a, Rise Founder and CEO Amanda Nguyen, and NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum.

      --Field Level Media

  • Report: 2021-22 NBA season to tip off on Oct. 19
    By Field Level Media / Thursday, June 10, 2021

    After two seasons that were either interrupted or delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic, the NBA is reportedly returning to a more traditional schedule.

    • The 2021-22 NBA regular season will start on Oct. 19, with teams opening training camp on Sept. 28, according to The Athletic.

      The 2022 NBA playoffs will begin on April 16, and the Finals will start on June 2 and continue as late as June 19, if necessary.

      The 2022 NBA Draft will be held on June 23.

      This season, which began on Dec. 22, could end as late as July 22. The start of this season was pushed back after the 2019-20 NBA season was stopped and eventually resumed following the onset of the pandemic.

      --Field Level Media