Mr. Clutch

Mr. Clutch

domingo, 7 de mayo de 2017

#ClutchNBA: Entre Premios y notitas relevantes de la NBA



































To:        All NBA Teams
From:      Tom Carelli
Date:      Saturday, May 6, 2017
Subject:   NBA Playoffs Schedule Update – May 11 Scenarios

Here are the three (3) possible schedule scenarios for Thursday, May 11.

1. If Game 6 is necessary in the Cleveland-Toronto and San Antonio-Houston series.

                                       Local    Eastern       Network
Game 6 Cleveland at Toronto           7:00 PM   7:00 PM        ESPN
Game 6 San Antonio at Houston         8:30 PM   9:30 PM        ESPN

2. If Game 6 is necessary in the San Antonio-Houston series and not necessary in the Cleveland-Toronto series.

                                       Local    Eastern       Network
Game 6 San Antonio at Houston         7:00 PM   8:00 PM        ESPN

3. If Game 6 is necessary in the Cleveland-Toronto series and not necessary in the San Antonio-Houston series.

                                       Local    Eastern       Network
Game 6 Cleveland at Toronto           8:00 PM   8:00 PM        ESPN


Additional scheduling information will be furnished as soon as possible consistent with the need to fulfill league obligations. 

As of 5/6/17 11:10 PM ET

To:        All NBA Teams
From:      Tom Carelli
Date:      Saturday, May 6, 2017
Subject:   NBA Playoffs Schedule Update – May 12 Scenarios

Here are the three (3) possible schedule scenarios for Friday, May 12.

1. If Game 6 is necessary in the Boston-Washington and Golden State-Utah series.

                                       Local    Eastern       Network
Game 6 Boston at Washington           8:00 PM   8:00 PM        ESPN
Game 6 Golden State at Utah           8:30 PM   10:30 PM       ESPN

2. If Game 6 is necessary in the Boston-Washington series and not necessary in the Golden State-Utah series.

                                       Local    Eastern       Network
Game 6 Boston at Washington           8:00 PM   8:00 PM        ESPN

3. If Game 6 is necessary in the Golden State-Utah series and not necessary in the Boston-Washington series.

                                       Local    Eastern       Network
Game 6 Golden State at Utah           7:00 PM   9:00 PM        ESPN


Additional scheduling information will be furnished as soon as possible consistent with the need to fulfill league obligations. 

As of 5/6/17 11:10 PM ET


 
Photo 1Rendering of New NBA Academy Africa Facility in Saly, Senegal (Credit: NBA)
 
NBA AND SEED PROJECT OFFICIALLY OPEN 
FIRST ACADEMY OF ITS KIND IN AFRICA

- Twelve Elite Prospects to Receive Scholarships and Training at NBA Academy Africa -

- New NBA Academy Africa Facility Scheduled to Open in Saly, Senegal this Fall -

SENEGAL, May 4, 2017 – The National Basketball Association (NBA) and SEED Project (Sports for Education and Economic Development), a non-profit organization based in Thies, Senegal that uses basketball as a platform to engage youth in academic, athletic and leadership programs, today announced the official opening of NBA Academy Africa.  An elite basketball training center in Thies for the top male and female prospects from throughout Africa, NBA Academy Africa is the first of its kind on the continent.

Twelve elite male prospects will be selected following scouting programs conducted with local federations across Africa and elite skills camps hosted in Thies in December and earlier this week.  All twelve prospects will receive scholarships and training at NBA Academy Africa.    

As part of today’s announcement, the NBA and SEED Project also announced their plan to launch a new NBA Academy Africa facility in Saly, Senegal for elite male prospects from throughout Africa, scheduled to open in the fall.  When the new facility in Saly opens, SEED Project’s existing facility in Thies will house and train female prospects and younger male prospects.

NBA Academy Africa will employ a holistic, 360-degree approach to player development with focuses on education, leadership, character development and life skills.  As part of the program, the students will compete against top competition throughout the year and will have an opportunity to be selected for travel teams that play in international tournaments and exhibition games.

“Today is an important milestone for the growth of basketball on the continent as we begin to welcome the first group of young student athletes who will form the inaugural roster of NBA Academy Africa,” said NBA Vice President and Managing Director for Africa, Amadou Gallo Fall.  “NBA Academy Africa will provide student athletes with world-class, comprehensive training and education so they have the resources to achieve on the court and in life.  I’d like to thank SEED for sharing our commitment to building a predictable path for African youth, and I am confident we will see the number of African players in the NBA continue to grow because of this initiative.”

“NBA Academy Africa will play an important part in developing elite young players on the continent, and we are excited to be partnering with the NBA on this project,” said SEED Project Senegal Executive Director Mohamed Niang.  “We look forward to working with the top young prospects and playing our part in providing them with the skills and supportive environment to succeed.”

The official opening of NBA Academy Africa follows the launch of academies in Hangzhou, Jinan and Urumqi, China and the planned launch of academies in Canberra, Australia; and Delhi National Capital Region (NCR), India.  NBA Academies include educational development for top international male and female prospects and mark the NBA’s most significant investment in elite player development.  The initiative exposes elite prospects to NBA-level coaching, facilities and competition and provides a global framework for elite prospects to maximize their success.

From 2014-16, SEED Project served as an implementing partner of the “Live, Learn and Play” (LLP) program, a strategic partnership between the NBA and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) designed to build local organizational capacity and positively impact Senegalese boys and girls ages 13-17 in 10 schools in Dakar and Thies.  The SEED Project regularly helps its graduates, including Gorgui Dieng (Minnesota Timberwolves; Senegal; Basketball without Borders Africa 2009), enroll in university programs in Africa, Europe and the U.S.

NBA Academy Africa builds on the NBA’s existing basketball and youth development initiatives in Africa, including Jr. NBA programs for boys and girls ages 16 and under in Cameroon, Congo, Kenya, Morocco, Mozambique, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Tanzania, Uganda, Senegal and South Africa.  Basketball without Borders, the NBA and FIBA’s global basketball development and community outreach program, has been held in Africa 14 times, with nine former BWB Africa campers drafted into the NBA.
 
SIXTY-SEVEN PLAYERS TO ATTEND 
2017 NBA DRAFT COMBINE POWERED BY UNDER ARMOUR
 
NEW YORK, May 5, 2017 – The National Basketball Association announced today that 67 players are expected to attend the 2017 NBA Draft Combine powered by Under Armour.  This marks the first year Under Armour will serve as the event's title partner.

The NBA Draft Combine is the first step in the Draft process for NBA hopefuls and features five-on-five games as well as strength and agility drills at Chicago’s Quest Multisport on Thursday, May 11 and Friday, May 12.

Below is a list of expected attendees at the 2017 NBA Draft Combine powered by Under Armour.
 
PLAYER                             FROM
Adebayo, Edrice                   Kentucky
Alkins, Rawle                       Arizona
Allen, Jarrett                        Texas
Allen, Kadeem                     Arizona
Anigbogu, Ike                      UCLA
Anunoby, OG                       Indiana
Artis, Jamel                          Pittsburgh
Bacon, Dwayne                    Florida State
Beachem, V.J.                      Notre Dame
Bell, Jordan                          Oregon
Blossomgame, Jaron             Clemson
Boucher, Chris                     Oregon
Bradley, Tony                      North Carolina
Briscoe, Isaiah                      Kentucky
Brooks, Dillon                      Oregon
Bryant, Thomas                    Indiana
Collins, John                        Wake Forest
Collins, Zach                        Gonzaga
Diallo, Hamidou                   Kentucky
Dorsey, Tyler                       Oregon
Dotson, Damyean                 Houston
Dozier, PJ                            South Carolina
Evans, Jawun                       Oklahoma State
Ferguson, Terrance               Adelaide (AUS)
Fox, De’Aaron                     Kentucky
Fultz, Markelle                     Washington
Giles, Harry                          Duke
Hart, Josh                             Villanova
Hayes, Nigel                         Wisconsin
Hicks, Isaiah                        North Carolina
Iwundu, Wesley                    Kansas State
Jackson, Frank                      Duke
Jackson, Justin                     North Carolina
Jackson, Justin                     Maryland
Jeanne, Jonathan                    Nancy (France)
Jok, Peter                              Iowa
Jones, Andrew                       Texas
Kennard, Luke                       Duke
Kuzma, Kyle                          Utah
Leaf, TJ                                 UCLA
Lydon, Tyler                          Syracuse
Mason III, Frank                    Kansas
Meeks, Kennedy                    North Carolina
Mika, Eric                             BYU
Mitchell, Donovan                 Louisville
Morris, Monte                       Iowa State
Motley, Johnathan                 Baylor
Mykhailiuk, Svi                     Kansas
Ojeleye, Semi                        SMU
Oliver, Cameron                    Nevada
Patton, Justin                         Creighton
Peters, Alec                           Valparaiso
Rabb, Ivan                             California
Reed, Davon                          Miami (FL)
Robinson, Devin                    Florida
Simmons, Kobi                      Arizona
Sumner, Edmond                   Xavier
Swanigan, Caleb                    Purdue
Thornwell, Sindarius              South Carolina
Trimble, Melo                        Maryland
Wagner, Moritz                      Michigan
Walton Jr., Derrick                 Michigan
Welsh, Thomas                      UCLA
White, Derrick                       Colorado
Williams-Goss, Nigel             Gonzaga
Wilson, D.J.                           Michigan
Yurtseven, Omer                    North Carolina St.
 


NBA 2K ESPORTS LEAGUE ANNOUNCES 17 NBA TEAMS TO PARTICIPATE IN INAUGURAL SEASON

NEW YORK, May 4, 2017 – The NBA 2K esports league announced today that 17 National Basketball Association (NBA) teams will participate in its inaugural season, set to debut in 2018.  Participating organizations include:
  • Boston Celtics
  • Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Dallas Mavericks
  • Detroit Pistons
  • Golden State Warriors
  • Indiana Pacers
  • Memphis Grizzlies
  • Miami Heat
  • Milwaukee Bucks
  • New York Knicks
  • Orlando Magic
  • Philadelphia 76ers
  • Portland Trail Blazers
  • Sacramento Kings
  • Toronto Raptors
  • Utah Jazz
  • Washington Wizards

“This is the first step in what promises to be an extraordinary league, bringing together the world's best gamers and showcasing elite competition on an international stage,” said NBA 2K esports league Managing Director Brendan Donohue.  “Our teams have expressed tremendous enthusiasm for esports, and we are looking forward to forming something truly unique for basketball and gaming fans around the globe.”

In February 2017, the NBA and Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (NASDAQ:TTWO) announced plans to launch a new, professional competitive gaming league that will bring together the best basketball gamers in the world.  In the coming months, the league and its teams will make a variety of announcements related to participating players, team branding, league structure and business updates.
 
NBA D-LEAGUE COMPLETES LANDMARK SEASON WITH RECORDS FOR ASSIGNMENTS AND PLAYERS ON NBA ROSTERS 
 
– Record 92 Unique NBA Players Assigned and 199 NBA D-League Alumni on 
NBA Rosters at End of 2016-17 Season – 
 
– League to be Known as NBA Gatorade League Starting with 2017-18 Season –

NEW YORK, May 3, 2017 – The NBA Development League (NBA D-League) completed a landmark season this year, establishing records for unique NBA players assigned with 92 and players on end-of-regular-season NBA rosters having NBA D-League experience with 199.

The 2016-17 season was also highlighted by the announcement that the league will be renamed the NBA Gatorade League (NBA G League) beginning next season through an expanded, multiyear partnership between the NBA and Gatorade, marking the first time a U.S. professional sports league has named an entitlement partner. Through the Gatorade Sports Science Institute (GSSI), the sports fuel company will collaborate with the NBA G League on programs to help enhance player sports performance and recovery.

The NBA D-League, which reached nearly 1.5 million in total attendance this past season, also announced it will expand to a record 25 teams in 2017-18 as the league has more than tripled in size since its inaugural season in 2001-02.

Other highlights from the 2016-17 NBA D-League season include:

NBA D-League Alumni in the NBA
  • 199 of the 451 players (44%) on 2016-17 NBA end-of-regular-season rosters have NBA D-League experience.
  • All 30 NBA teams finished the season with at least three NBA D-League veterans on their roster, with 17 teams featuring more than seven such players (up from 10 teams last year)
  • 38 NBA D-League players earned a total of 51 GATORADE Call-Ups to NBA teams during the 2016-17 season.
  • Four former NBA D-League coaches served as NBA head coaches this past season: Dave Joerger (Dakota Wizards/Sacramento Kings), Quin Snyder (Austin Toros/Utah Jazz), Luke Walton (Los Angeles D-Fenders/Los Angeles Lakers) and Earl Watson (Austin Spurs/Phoenix Suns).
  • 17 NBA Draft 2016 first-round selections and 39 NBA Draft 2016 selections overall played in the NBA D-League league this past season.
Marketing Partnership
  • As part of its partnership, Gatorade will incubate its latest sports fuel products and equipment innovations in NBA G League locker rooms, and teams will have the opportunity to collaborate with the Gatorade Sports Science Institute to help players maximize their athletic potential and on-court performance.
NBA D-League Total Attendance
  • Nearly 1.5 million fans attended NBA D-League games during the 2016-17 season (1,469,908), an increase of more than 10 percent in total attendance over last year, marking the eighth straight year that total attendance surpassed 1 million fans.
  • The season featured the four largest crowds in the league’s history, including the highest-attended NBA D-League game in history when Raptors 905 hosted the Austin Spurs at Air Canada Centre on March 13 (18,090).
  • The other games featured the Oklahoma City Blue against the Long Island Nets at Chesapeake Energy Arena on March 8 (17,695), the Santa Cruz Warriors against the Blue at Oracle Arena on Feb. 12 (17,497) and Raptors 905 against the Grand Rapids Drive at Hershey Centre in Ontario on Dec. 20 (15,011).
Social Media
  • The NBA D-League set records across social media for impressions (1.1 billion, +98%) and video views (102 million, +22%).
Expanded Visibility 
  • For the first time, more than 550 NBA D-League games were streamed live exclusively via Facebook Live this past season.
  • ESPNU and NBA TV combined to present 42 games this season over the entire season.
Record Jersey Partnerships
  • A record 13 NBA D-League teams secured jersey partnerships for the 2016-17 season: Austin Spurs (Central Texas Pain Center), Delaware 87ers (Team Dignitas), Erie BayHawks (LECOM), Fort Wayne Mad Ants (Lutheran Health Network), Grand Rapids Drive (Metro Health), Oklahoma City Blue (Continental Resources), Raptors 905 (BMO), Rio Grande Valley Vipers (Lone Star National Bank), Salt Lake City Stars (Zions Bank), Santa Cruz Warriors (Kaiser Permanente), Texas Legends (Avigilon), Westchester Knicks (Chase) and Windy City Bulls (BMO).


First-Ever NBA Awards on TNT to Include Six Fan-Voted Awards 
as Part of June 26 Show


Categories and Finalists Unveiled for Dunk of the Year, Best Style, Block of the Year, 
Assist of the Year, Game Winner of the Year & Top Performance of the Year

Voting Now Live Across NBA.com, Twitter, Facebook & Instagram

 
The first-ever NBA Awards on TNT – airing Monday, June 26 (9 p.m. ET), live from Basketball City in New York – will include six new award categories to be presented during this year’s inaugural show, all determined exclusively by fan voting across NBA.comFacebookTwitter and Instagram.  New NBA fan-voted awards will include:
  • Dunk of the Year
  • Best Style
  • Block of the Year
  • Assist of the Year
  • Game Winner of the Year
  • Top Performance of the Year
Fan-voted awards – with voting now live via www.nba.com/nbaawards, along with social media platforms – will be presented in addition to all of the NBA’s traditional end-of-season awards, including Kia NBA Most Valuable Player, Kia NBA Rookie of the Year, Kia NBA Defensive Player of the Year, Kia NBA Sixth Man Award, Kia NBA Most Improved Player, NBA Coach of the Year, NBA Basketball Executive of the Year, NBA Sportsmanship Award, Twyman-Stokes Teammate of the Year Award, NBA All-Rookie Team, NBA All-Defensive Team and the Seasonlong NBA Cares Community Assist Award presented by Kaiser Permanente.
 
Grammy Award-winning, platinum-selling recording artist and multi-faceted entertainer Drake will host the NBA Awards on TNT.

Fans can vote on social media by posting #AwardName and First / Last Name of their winner (i.e. #DunkOfTheYear  Larry Nance). Finalists for the fan-voted categories include:
 
#DunkOfTheYear 
  • Los Angeles Lakers’ Larry Nance, Jr. vs. Brooklyn
  • Minnesota’s Zach LaVine vs. Phoenix
  • Oklahoma City’s Victor Oladipo vs. Atlanta
#BestStyle 
  • Cleveland’s Iman Shumpert
  • Chicago’s Dwyane Wade
  • Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook
#BlockOfTheYear 
  • San Antonio’s Kawhi Leonard vs. Houston
  • New York’s Kristaps Porzingis vs. Brooklyn
  • Miami’s Hassan Whiteside vs. Toronto
#GameWinnerOfTheYear 
  • Cleveland’s Kyrie Irving vs. Golden State
  • Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook vs. Denver
  • Phoenix’s Tyler Ulis vs. Boston
#TopPerformanceOfTheYear 
  • Phoenix’s Devin Booker 70-point game vs. Boston
  • Houston’s James Harden nets 53-16-17 triple double vs. New York
  • Golden State’s Klay Thompson scores 60 in three quarters vs. Indiana
  • Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook with most points in a triple double, 57-13-11, vs. Orlando
#AssistOfTheYear 
  • Golden State’s Draymond Green to Stephen Curry to Kevin Durant
  • Denver’s Nikola Jokic with no-look pass
  • LA Clippers’ Chris Paul with wraparound pass
The NBA Awards on TNT, created by Turner Sports and the NBA, is produced by dick clark productions.
 
MVP VANDER BLUE LEADS 2016-17 ALL-NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE FIRST TEAM

-- Maine’s Nader Highlights All-Rookie Team; Raptors 905’s Tavares Headlines All-Defensive Team --  

NEW YORK, April 25, 2017 – NBA Development League Most Valuable Player Vander Blue of the Los Angeles D-Fenders headlines the 2016-17 All-NBA D-League Teams, which were announced today along with the All-Rookie Team and the All-Defensive Team.

Blue, who ranked third in the NBA D-League in scoring with 24.8 points per game, is joined on the All-NBA Development League First Team by Keith Benson (Sioux Falls Skyforce), Quinn Cook (Canton Charge), Dakari Johnson (Oklahoma City Blue) and Edy Tavares (Raptors 905).  Tavares, the NBA D-League Defensive Player of the Year, earned a GATORADE Call-Up from the Cleveland Cavaliers this season.  Cook was called up by the Dallas Mavericks and New Orleans Pelicans.

The All-NBA D-League Second Team is highlighted by three players who received GATORADE Call-Ups this season: the Delaware 87ers’ Shawn Long (who played in the NBA for the Philadelphia 76ers), the Fort Wayne Mad Ants’ Alex Poythress (76ers) and Sioux Falls’ Briante Weber (Golden State Warriors and Charlotte Hornets).  The D-Fenders’ Josh Magette and NBA D-League Rookie of the Year Abdel Nader of the Maine Red Claws are also part of the Second Team.

The Third Team features Raptors 905’s Axel Toupane, who finished the season with the Pelicans after a stint with the Milwaukee Bucks, and Maine’s Marcus Georges-Hunt, who earned GATORADE Call-Ups with the Miami Heat and Orlando Magic.  Rounding out the Third Team are NBA D-League Impact Player of the Year John Holland of Canton, Maine’s Jalen Jones and Canton’s Eric Moreland.

In all, 11 players on the three 2016-17 All-NBA D-League Teams have NBA experience, with seven earning GATORADE Call-Ups this season.

Nader, who averaged 21.3 points and 6.2 rebounds for Maine, leads the 2016-17 NBA D-League All-Rookie Team.  Joining Nader on the All-Rookie Team are Maine’s Jones, Fort Wayne’s Poythress, Los Angeles’ David Nwaba and the Rio Grande Valley Vipers’ Isaiah Taylor.

Tavares, who tied for the NBA D-League lead with 2.7 blocks per game, headlines the 2016-17 NBA D-League All-Defensive Team.  He is joined by three other members of the All-NBA Development League Teams –   Sioux Falls’ Benson and Weber and Canton’s Moreland – as well as L.A.’s Nwaba, an All-Rookie Team selection.

The complete All-NBA Development League, All-Rookie and All-Defensive Team results are below.  The league’s 22 head coaches selected each team.

2016-17 ALL-NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE TEAMS

FIRST TEAM

Keith Benson – Sioux Falls
Vander Blue – Los Angeles
Quinn Cook – Canton*
Dakari Johnson – Oklahoma City
Edy Tavares – Raptors 905*

SECOND TEAM
Shawn Long – Delaware 87ers*
Josh Magette – Los Angeles
Abdel Nader – Maine
Alex Poythress – Fort Wayne*
Briante Weber – Sioux Falls*

THIRD TEAM
Marcus Georges-Hunt – Maine*
John Holland – Canton
Jalen Jones – Maine
Eric Moreland – Canton
Axel Toupane – Raptors 905*

2016-17 NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE ALL-ROOKIE TEAM
Jalen Jones – Maine
Abdel Nader – Maine
David Nwaba – Los Angeles*
Alex Poythress – Fort Wayne*
Isaiah Taylor – Rio Grande Valley*

2016-17 ALL-NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE ALL-DEFENSIVE TEAM

Keith Benson – Sioux Falls
Eric Moreland – Canton
David Nwaba – Los Angeles*
Edy Tavares – Raptors 905*
Briante Weber – Sioux Falls*

*Earned GATORADE Call-Up this season
 

CHICAGO BULLS’ JIMMY BUTLER RECEIVES APRIL NBA CARES COMMUNITY ASSIST AWARD PRESENTED BY KAISER PERMANENTE 

– Fan Voting for Seasonlong NBA Cares Community Assist Award presented by Kaiser Permanente Begins Today on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram –

 Seasonlong Winner to be Announced at the NBA Awards on TNT June 26 –

NEW YORK, April 26, 2017 – Chicago Bulls forward Jimmy Butler has received the April NBA Cares Community Assist Award presented by Kaiser Permanente in recognition of his efforts to empower and uplift at-risk youth throughout Chicago, the NBA announced today.  The award recognizes an NBA player each month who best reflects the passion that the league and its players share for giving back to their communities.

Kaiser Permanente and the NBA are honoring Butler for making the one-on-one support and mentorship of Chicago’s youth a top priority.  Working with one of the Bulls’ longtime community partners, Youth Guidance, Butler recently participated in its Becoming a Man (BAM) conversation circle at Kelvyn Park High School, where he discussed ways to improve the city with students.  During two Bulls basketball tournaments with Youth Guidance and the Chicago Police Department, where officers and students played side-by-side, Butler and his teammates led conversation circles about trust, integrity and issues facing their community.  Expanding his community outreach this year, Butler also provides regular dinners to homeless men and women at Pacific Garden Mission, doing so almost every month of the 2016-17 season.

“Spending time with these kids is as impactful for me as it is for them,” said Butler.  “Hearing their stories and learning about what they go through motivates me to do even more for Chicago.  Their desire to change the world is inspiring, and I’m proud to help them achieve any way I can.”

The NBA Cares Community Assist Award honors the standard set by NBA Legend David Robinson, who improved the community piece by piece.  Kaiser Permanente and the NBA will donate $10,000 on Butler’s behalf to Youth Guidance.

Butler’s win signals the end of the monthly awards and the beginning of fan voting for the 2016-17 Seasonlong NBA Cares Community Assist Award presented by Kaiser Permanente.  Fans can vote for their favorite nominee through May 5 via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using #NBACommunityAssist and #PlayerFirstNameLastName (e.g., #JimmyButler).  An NBA committee of judges will join fans in selecting the winner.

The 10 nominees include monthly winners ButlerTobias HarrisJrue HolidayCJ McCollumElfrid PaytonZach Randolphand Isaiah Thomas, and three additional players nominated for their exceptional community work: DeMarre CarrollMike Conley and Dwyane Wade.  The seasonlong winner will be announced at the inaugural NBA Awards on TNT, which will be televised live on Monday, June 26 in New York.  Additionally, the NBA and Kaiser Permanente will donate $25,000 to the winner’s charity of choice.

To learn more, please visit http://www.nba.com/communityassist/.
 
LOS ANGELES’ VANDER BLUE NAMED
2016-17 NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE MOST VALUABLE PLAYER

NEW YORK, April 24, 2017 – Los Angeles D-Fenders guard Vander Blue has been named the 2016-17 NBA Development League Most Valuable Player in a vote by the league’s 22 head coaches.

In his fourth season in the NBA D-League and his third with the D-Fenders, Blue (6-4, 200, Marquette) ranked third in the league in scoring with 24.8 points per game and added 5.1 rebounds, 3.0 assists and a team-high 1.6 steals in 47 games (46 starts).  A two-time NBA D-League Player of the Week this season, Blue helped the Los Angeles Lakers’ NBA D-League affiliate finish tied for the best record in the Western Conference at 34-16.  Los Angeles improved by seven victories from last season and posted the second-most wins in franchise history (38 in 2011-12).  

Blue scored at least 30 points 10 times and reached the 40-point mark twice.  On March 29, he made an NBA D-League-record 23 free throws en route to a season-high 41 points to go with seven rebounds and five steals in a 139-132 road victory over the Reno Bighorns.

This season, the three-time NBA D-League All-Star cracked the top 10 on the league’s all-time scoring list, finishing the season ranked third with 4,024 points.  Blue is Los Angeles’ franchise leader in points (3,570), total rebounds (746), defensive rebounds (601), field goals made (1,189), free throws made (944), games played (144) and minutes (5,301).

Blue signed as an undrafted free agent with the Boston Celtics in 2013 before being assigned to the Maine Red Claws for the start of his NBA D-League career.  He spent his first season with the Red Claws, Delaware 87ers and Idaho Stampede.  Blue earned GATORADE Call-Ups to the Celtics (2013-14) and Lakers (2014-15), averaging 5.4 points, 2.4 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 0.6 steals in five NBA games.

All-Time NBA D-League Most Valuable Player Award Winners
2016-17: Vander Blue (Los Angeles D-Fenders) 
2015-16: Jarnell Stokes (Sioux Falls Skyforce)
2014-15: Tim Frazier (Maine Red Claws)
2013-14: Ron Howard (Fort Wayne Mad Ants)
               Othyus Jeffers (Iowa Energy)
2012-13: Andrew Goudelock (Rio Grande Valley Vipers)
2011-12: Justin Dentmon (Austin Toros)
2010-11: Curtis Stinson (Iowa Energy)
2009-10: Mike Harris (Rio Grande Valley Vipers)
2008-09: Courtney Sims (Iowa Energy)
2007-08: Kasib Powell (Sioux Falls Skyforce)
2006-07: Randy Livingston (Idaho Stampede)
2005-06: Marcus Fizer (Austin Toros)
2004-05: Matt Carroll (Roanoke Dazzle)
2003-04: Tierre Brown (Charleston Lowgators)
2002-03: Devin Brown (Fayetteville Patriots)
2001-02: Ansu Sesay (Greenville Groove)


NBA AND TAKE-TWO NAME BRENDAN DONOHUE
MANAGING DIRECTOR OF NEW NBA 2K ESPORTS LEAGUE
 
-- Twenty-year Sports Industry Veteran Selected to Oversee League Operations
and Launch of Inaugural Season --

NEW YORK, April 25, 2017 – NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (NASDAQ:TTWO) Chairman and CEO Strauss Zelnick have selected Brendan Donohue, NBA Senior Vice President, Team Marketing and Business Operations (TMBO), as Managing Director of their new, jointly formed NBA 2K esports league, effective immediately.  NBA teams participating in the inaugural season will be announced in the coming weeks, with the new league set to launch in 2018.

Donohue, a sports industry veteran with more than two decades of experience in team and league operations, will be responsible for managing the new league.  Since joining the NBA in 2009, he has been instrumental in the success of TMBO, the league’s industry-renowned consulting group.  There, he led strategic planning and management for all 64 teams across the NBA, WNBA and NBA Development League, helping them innovate in sales, marketing, digital and analytical areas of their business.

“We're thrilled that we already have in place a seasoned sports executive to lead this new league,” said NBA Commissioner Adam Silver.  “The fact that Brendan knows the NBA inside and out is a huge bonus and will enable us to ramp up this venture in record time.”

“We are very pleased to have Brendan join our team and lend his extensive professional basketball acumen to the NBA 2K esports league,” said Take-Two Chairman and CEO Strauss Zelnick.  “The league will have all of the structure and polish of the NBA, coupled with the thrills and engagement of our industry-leading NBA 2K franchise to provide an exciting new entry into the world of competitive gaming.”

More than half of the NBA team organizations are expected to participate in the NBA 2K esports league’s inaugural season.  The new, professional competitive gaming league will bring together the best basketball gamers in the world and follow a professional sports league format.  Five competitors will face off in head-to-head competition throughout a regular season, participating in a bracketed playoff system, and concluding with a championship matchup.  This marks the first official esports league operated by a U.S. professional sports league.

Donohue graduated from Boston College with a degree in English and a concentration in Business.  He lives in Fairfield, Conn., with his wife Patty and their two children.
 
CANTON’S JOHN HOLLAND NAMED 
2016-17 NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE IMPACT PLAYER OF THE YEAR 

NEW YORK, April 21, 2017 – Canton Charge guard John Holland today was named the 2016-17 NBA Development League Impact Player of the Year, as voted on by the league’s 22 head coaches.  The award recognizes a player who joined an NBA D-League team after Nov. 25, 2016, and made the greatest contribution to his team’s success following that in-season acquisition.

Holland (6-5, 205, Boston University), who appeared in 37 games for Canton last season, rejoined the Cleveland Cavaliers’ NBA D-League affiliate on Dec. 9, 2016, when the Charge had a 5-7 record.  After Holland’s arrival, the Charge went 24-14 the rest of the way to finish with a 29-21 record.  Canton earned the fourth seed in the NBA D-League Eastern Conference Playoffs, losing to Raptors 905 in the conference semifinals.

For the season, Holland averaged 22.9 points (seventh in the league), 4.7 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.5 steals in a league-high 38.8 minutes per game.  He also shot 48.1 percent from the field in 37 games.

Holland, 28, signed with the Boston Celtics before the 2016 NBA Playoffs and made his NBA debut in the first round against the Atlanta Hawks.  He appeared in three preseason games for the Cavaliers in October 2016.

After spending four years at Boston University, Holland played professionally in France, Spain and Turkey.  He also represented the Puerto Rican national team in 2011.

All-Time NBA D-League Impact Players of the Year
John Holland (Canton Charge, 2016-17)
Ryan Gomes (Los Angeles D-Fenders, 2015-16)
Jerel McNeal (Bakersfield Jam, 2014-15)
Ike Diogu (Bakersfield Jam, 2013-14)
Rasual Butler (Tulsa 66ers, 2012-13)
Eric Dawson (Austin Toros, 2011-12)
Jeff Adrien (Rio Grande Valley Vipers, 2010-11)
Brian Butch (Bakersfield Jam, 2009-10)
Eddie Gill (Colorado 14ers, 2008-09)
Morris Almond (Utah Flash, 2007-08)
 
DELAWARE’S DEVONDRICK WALKER NAMED 
2017 NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE MOST IMPROVED PLAYER 
 
NEW YORK, April 20, 2017 – Delaware 87ers guard Devondrick Walker has been named the 2017 NBA Development League Most Improved Player, as voted on by the league’s 22 head coaches.  The award honors the player who demonstrated the most significant improvement during the 2016-17 NBA D-League season.

In his third season in the NBA D-League and his first with the 87ers, Walker (6-5, 205) appeared in 48 games, averaging 12.0 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists. He was acquired by the 87ers in a trade with the Westchester Knicks on Dec. 14, 2016.

Walker’s best month was January, when he averaged 14.9 points, 3.1 rebounds and 1.1 assists. Five of his six 20-point games came after December, including a career-high 24 points in a 131-125 loss to the Maine Red Claws on Feb. 4.  Walker also tallied at least 17 points in 12 games this season, with 10 of those performances coming after December.

Walker played for Westchester during the 2015-16 season before joining Delaware in December.  In 2014-15, Walker spent time with the Austin Spurs, helping them reach the Western Conference Finals of the 2015 NBA D-League Playoffs.

All-Time NBA D-League Most Improved Player Award Winners:
2016-17: Devondrick Walker (Delaware 87ers) 
2015-16: Axel Toupane (Raptors 905)
2014-15: Joe Jackson (Bakersfield Jam)
2013-14: Frank Gaines (Maine Red Claws)
2012-13: Cameron Jones (Santa Cruz Warriors)
2011-12: Kenny Hayes (Maine Red Claws)
2010-11: Dar Tucker (New Mexico Thunderbirds)
2009-10: Mildon Ambres (Idaho Stampede)
 
RAPTORS 905’s JERRY STACKHOUSE NAMED 
2016-17 NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE COACH OF THE YEAR

NEW YORK, April 19, 2017 – Raptors 905’s Jerry Stackhouse today was named the NBA Development League Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year in a vote by his fellow NBA D-League head coaches.

Stackhouse, in his first season as a head coach, led Raptors 905 (39-11) to its first Central Division title and the top overall seed in the 2017 NBA D-League Playoffs.  Raptors 905 opened the season 10-2 and posted winning streaks of 10 games (Jan. 6 – 31) and nine games (Feb. 9 – March 4).  The team also set an NBA D-League record with 21 road victories.

Raptors 905 boasted the NBA D-League’s top defense, holding opponents to league lows of 98.8 points per game, 100.1 points per 100 possessions and 42.8 percent shooting from the field.  Stackhouse’s team finished with the league’s highest point differential (8.0).

Under Stackhouse’s direction, 2016-17 NBA D-League Defensive Player of the Year Edy Tavares and 2017 NBA D-League All-Star Axel Toupane earned GATORADE Call-Ups – Tavares to the Cleveland Cavaliers and Toupane to the New Orleans Pelicans and Milwaukee Bucks.

Stackhouse was named head coach of Raptors 905 after serving as an assistant coach last season with the Toronto Raptors, the team’s NBA parent club.  Selected by the Philadelphia 76ers with the third pick in the 1995 NBA Draft, the two-time NBA All-Star averaged at least 20 points five times over 18 NBA seasons.

The NBA D-League Coach of the Year award is named for the late Hall of Famer Dennis Johnson, a star NBA guard and NBA D-League coach.  During his playing career with the Boston Celtics, Phoenix Suns and Seattle SuperSonics, Johnson won three NBA titles, played in five NBA All-Star Games and was named to the All-Defensive First Team six times.  He was in his third season coaching in the NBA D-League when he passed away in 2007.

Stackhouse will be presented with the award tonight before Raptors 905 hosts the Maine Red Claws in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals at the Hershey Centre (7 p.m. ET, ESPNU).

All-Time Dennis Johnson Coach of the Year Award Recipients
 
2016-17: Jerry Stackhouse, Raptors 905
2015-16: Dan Craig, Sioux Falls Skyforce
2014-15: Scott Morrison, Maine Red Claws
2013-14: Conner Henry, Fort Wane Mad Ants
2012-13: Alex Jensen, Canton Charge
2011-12: Eric Musselman, Los Angeles D-Fenders
2010-11: Nick Nurse, Iowa Energy
2009-10: Chris Finch, Rio Grande Valley Vipers
2008-09: Quin Snyder, Austin Toros
2007-08: Bryan Gates, Idaho Stampede
2006-07: Bryan Gates, Idaho Stampede


 
Photo 1: BWB Europe 2015 Group Photo (Credit: NBAE/Getty Images)

BWB Europe 2016 Recap Video
 
NBA, FIBA AND ISRAEL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION 
TO HOST FIRST BASKETBALL WITHOUT BORDERS CAMP IN ISRAEL

 
NEW YORK, MIES, TEL AVIV, April 19, 2017 – The National Basketball Association (NBA), the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the Israel Basketball Association today announced that the 16th edition of Basketball without Borders (BWB) Europe will be held Aug. 13-16 at The Wingate Institute in Netanya, Israel, marking the first time that the NBA and FIBA’s global basketball development and community outreach program will be held in Israel.

BWB Europe will bring together the top male and female players born in 2000 from across Europe to learn directly from NBA and FIBA players, legends and coaches and to compete against the best young players from the continent.  BWB Europe will also include a variety of NBA Cares and Jr. NBA community outreach efforts with youth in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv in partnership with local community organizations.  These programs will highlight the power of sport to promote cultural understanding while teaching the importance of a healthy, active lifestyle and the values of the game, including teamwork, integrity and respect.  Nike, a BWB global partner since 2002, will outfit the campers and coaches with Nike apparel and footwear.

BWB has reached more than 2,720 participants from 134 countries and territories since 2001, with 43 campers drafted into the NBA.  Twenty-three former BWB campers, including 13 former BWB Europe campers, were on opening-night rosters for the 2016-17 season including Omri Casspi (Minnesota Timberwolves; Israel; BWB Europe 2005), Danilo Gallinari (Denver Nuggets; Italy; BWB Europe 2003) and Marc Gasol (Memphis Grizzlies; Spain; BWB Europe 2003).

The first-ever Basketball without Borders camp took place in Europe in July 2001.  Vlade Divac (Serbia) and Toni Kukoc (Croatia), together with former teammates from the Yugoslav national team, reunited to work with 50 children from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Slovenia and Serbia and Montenegro at La Ghirada in Treviso, Italy.  The NBA and FIBA have staged 49 BWB camps in 30 cities across 25 countries on six continents.  More than 230 current and former NBA, WNBA and FIBA players have joined more than 185 NBA team personnel from all 30 NBA teams to support BWB across the world.


Executive and Player Quotes:

NBA Vice President, International Basketball Operations & Head of Elite Basketball, Brooks Meek:
“Hosting BWB in Israel will allow the NBA and FIBA to use basketball and the values of the game, including teamwork, integrity and respect, to bring together youth and community organizations from a variety of backgrounds and foster cultural understanding.  We’re looking forward to welcoming Europe’s top male and female prospects to Israel in August.”

FIBA National Federations & Sport Director Zoran Radovic:
“We are extremely happy that Israel will host Basketball without Borders Europe for the first time, and we are confident this will enhance the development of young players in Israel.  Hosting Basketball without Borders in August and then hosting the Group Phase of FIBA EuroBasket 2017 in September will make for two very exciting basketball months in Israel as well as put a focus on European and local basketball heroes.  We look forward to having another very successful Basketball without Borders camp and wish to thank Israel’s basketball community for all the help and efforts in staging the camp.” 

Israel Basketball Association:
“The Israel Basketball Association is excited to cooperate with the NBA and FIBA on this great Basketball without Borders program.  We are proud that Israel was chosen to host the event and for the opportunity to become a part of this wonderful basketball tradition.  With the NBA and FIBA we will work to make sure Europe’s top male and female players will experience Israel and the event in the best way.”

Minnesota Timberwolves forward Omri Casspi:
“Basketball without Borders is an amazing program, and I’m fortunate that I was able to participate as a camper in 2005.  It’s great to see the NBA and FIBA recognize Israel’s basketball development efforts by hosting the camp there for the first time.  I look forward to working with Europe’s top male and female players and showing them the beauty and culture of my home country.”
 

NEW ORLEANS PELICANS’ JRUE HOLIDAY RECEIVES MARCH NBA CARES COMMUNITY ASSIST AWARD PRESENTED BY KAISER PERMANENTE

 NBA and Kaiser Permanente to Donate $10,000 to Preemptive Love Coalition –

NEW YORK, April 19, 2017 – New Orleans Pelicans point guard Jrue Holiday has received the March NBA Cares Community Assist Award presented by Kaiser Permanente in recognition of his efforts to provide New Orleans with immediate tornado relief and his commitment to promoting gender equality, the NBA announced today.  The award recognizes an NBA player each month who best reflects the passion that the league and its players share for giving back to their communities.

After several devastating tornadoes struck New Orleans in February, Holiday pledged to donate $1,000 per each point and assist he tallied during the Pelicans’ game against the San Antonio Spurs on March 3.  Holiday’s stellar performance that game resulted in $31,000, which he donated to the Greater New Orleans Foundation to immediately aid those most impacted by the tornadoes.  Later in the month, Holiday hosted a family who benefited from the donation at a home game, meeting with them pregame to express his support and check on their recovery.
 

No stranger to unexpected hardship, Holiday took time off early this season when his wife, Lauren, learned halfway into her pregnancy that she was suffering from a brain tumor.  Grateful for her recovery and the successful birth of their daughter, Holiday was excited to share his story in the NBA’s recent Lean In Campaign, which encourages men to be supportive, 50/50 partners to their spouses.  Appearing in the campaign’s PSAs, Holiday hopes that his story will help encourage others to build stronger marriages based on equality.

“Working in the community and assisting others is a blessing that I find very fulfilling and rewarding,” said Holiday.  “I don’t take for granted the platform I have playing basketball or the perspective I have gained from giving back, and that motivates me to get involved with matters close to my heart.”

The NBA Cares Community Assist Award honors the standard set by NBA Legend David Robinson, who improved the community piece by piece.  In addition, Kaiser Permanente and the NBA will donate $10,000 on Holiday’s behalf to Preemptive Love Coalition.

 
To learn more, please visit http://www.nba.com/communityassist/.
 
RAPTORS 905’s EDY TAVARES NAMED 
2016-17 NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR 
 
NEW YORK, April 18, 2017 – Raptors 905 center Edy Tavares, who received a GATORADE Call-Up to the Cleveland Cavaliers on April 12, has been named the 2016-17 NBA Development League Defensive Player of the Year by a vote of the league’s 22 head coaches.

Taveras (7-3, 265) appeared in 48 games for Raptors 905 this season, anchoring a defense that held opponents to a league-low 98.0 points per game and 42.8 percent shooting. Raptors 905 allowed 94.5 points per 100 possessions when Tavares was on the court.

Taveras tied for the NBA D-League lead with 2.7 blocks per game. On March 25, he recorded an NBA D-League season-high 12 blocks as part of a triple-double that included 15 points and 11 rebounds. He also averaged 10.6 points on 59.1 percent shooting (eighth in the league) and 7.7 rebounds.

A 2017 NBA D-League All-Star, Taveras helped Raptors 905 to a league-best 39-11 record. The team swept the Canton Charge in the Eastern Conference Semifinals and currently leads the Maine Red Claws 1-0 in the Conference Finals.

Taveras, who was born in Maio, Cape Verde, was selected by the Atlanta Hawks with the 43rd pick in NBA Draft 2014 presented by State Farm. Before signing with Cleveland, he appeared in 12 games with the Hawks and owns career averages of 2.5 points, 2.5 rebounds and 7.8 minutes.

All-Time NBA D-League Defensive Players of the Year:
DeAndre Liggins (Sioux Falls Skyforce, 2015-16)
Aaron Craft (Santa Cruz Warriors, 2014-15)
DeAndre Liggins (Sioux Falls Skyforce, 2013-14)
Stefhon Hannah (Santa Cruz Warriors, 2012-13)
Stefhon Hannah (Dakota Wizards, 2011-12)
Chris Johnson (Dakota Wizards, 2010-11)
Greg Stiemsma (Sioux Falls Skyforce, 2009-10)
Brent Petway (Idaho Stampede, 2008-09)
Stephane Lasme (Los Angeles D-Fenders, 2007-08)
Mouhamed Sene (Idaho Stampede, 2007-08)
Renaldo Major (Dakota Wizards, 2006-07)
Derrick Zimmerman (Austin Toros, 2005-06)
Derrick Zimmerman (Columbus Riverdragons, 2004-05)
Karim Shabazz (Charleston Lowgators, 2003-04)
Mikki Moore (Roanoke Dazzle, 2002-03)
Jeff Myers (Greenville Groove, 2001-02)

WESTCHESTER KNICKS’ KEITH WRIGHT EARNS
NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE JASON COLLIER SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD

NEW YORK, April 17, 2017 – Westchester Knicks forward Keith Wright has earned the 2016-17 NBA Development League Jason Collier Sportsmanship Award, as voted on by his fellow Sportsmanship Award nominees.  The award honors the player who best represents the ideals of character and conduct on and off the court.

Wright, 27, was an integral member of the Westchester community throughout the season, participating in many outreach activities.  During the NBA D-League’s Season of Giving initiative, Wright worked with the Food Bank of Westchester, Xperience Outreach Program and the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Westchester to help spread holiday cheer.

Additionally, he accompanied Knicks mascot Hudson to surprise patients at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital.  Wright also hosted a free Junior Dub Knicks Youth Clinic presented by Chase for more than 100 local children from Robert Jacobson Sports, and he participated in the NBA D-League Showcase Clinic in Toronto in January.

Wright is the founder of the Wright of Way, Inc. Foundation.  Formed in April 2015, the foundation helps student-athletes obtain scholarships and funding to further their education.

On the court, Wright (6-8, 240, Harvard) played in 47 games (32 starts) for Westchester this season, averaging 8.8 points and 6.9 rebounds in 26.7 minutes.  He scored in double figures 23 times, including a season-high 23 points in a 119-111 loss to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants on Jan. 12.  Wright joined the Knicks for the 2015-16 season after two seasons with the Austin Spurs.  In 128 career NBA D-League games, he has averaged 6.4 points and 6.0 rebounds.

The Sportsmanship Award honors former NBA D-League, Houston Rockets and Atlanta Hawks center Jason Collier, who passed away suddenly on Oct. 15, 2005.  Collier, a 2003-04 All-NBA D-League First Team selection as a member of the Fayetteville Patriots, was a player and person who exemplified the qualities of a faithful teammate, husband, father, son, brother and friend.  He was preparing to begin his sixth NBA season at the time of his death.

All-Time Jason Collier Sportsmanship Award Winners
2016-17: Keith Wright (Westchester Knicks)
2015-16: Scott Suggs (Raptors 905)
2014-15: Renaldo Major (Bakersfield Jam)
2013-14: Ron Howard (Fort Wayne Mad Ants)
2012-13: Ron Howard (Fort Wayne Mad Ants)
2011-12: Moses Ehambe (Iowa Energy)
2010-11: Larry Owens (Tulsa 66ers)
2009-10: Andre Ingram (Utah Flash)
2008-09: Will Conroy (Albuquerque Thunderbirds)
2007-08: Billy Thomas (Colorado 14ers)
2007-08: Roger Powell (Arkansas RimRockers)
2006-07: Ime Udoka (Fort Worth Flyers)

PACERS’ GEORGE AND CLIPPERS’ PAUL 
NAMED KIA NBA PLAYERS OF THE MONTH
 
NEW YORK, April 14, 2017 – The Indiana Pacers’ Paul George and the LA Clippers’ Chris Paul today were named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month, respectively, for games played in April.

George averaged an NBA-high 32.8 points and added 8.2 rebounds and 4.5 assists as the Pacers went 5-1 in April to clinch a playoff spot for the sixth time in seven seasons.  He scored at least 30 points in four of six games, including a season-high 43 points in a 135-130 double-overtime loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on April 2.  The 26-year-old forward shot 54.8 percent from the field and 42.4 percent from three-point range for the month.  He also finished third in the NBA in steals with 2.17 per game.  George and the Pacers will visit the Cavaliers on Saturday, April 15 for Game 1 of a first-round postseason series (3 p.m. ET, ABC).  

Paul led the Clippers to a 5-0 month behind averages of 21.2 points, 9.8 assists (fourth in the NBA) and 5.0 rebounds, helping LA clinch the fourth seed in the Western Conference and secure home-court advantage against the Utah Jazz in the first round of the playoffs.  The 31-year-old guard shot 54.4 percent from the field and 52.6 percent from three-point range and went 22-for-22 from the free throw line in April.  He finished with 19 points, eight rebounds and eight assists in a 98-87 road win against the San Antonio Spurs on April 8.  The Clippers, who have made the playoffs a franchise-record six consecutive seasons since acquiring Paul, will host the Jazz in Game 1 on April 15 (10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN).    

Here is a recap of April for George and Paul:
 
Paul George, Indiana Pacers
April 4 vs. Toronto: Notched 35 points, 10 rebounds and three assists in a 108-90 victory against the Raptors.
April 6 vs. Milwaukee: Finished with 23 points, 10 rebounds and five steals in a 104-89 win over the Bucks.
April 12 vs. Atlanta: Made five three-pointers on his way to 32 points and added 11 rebounds in a 104-86 victory over the Hawks.

Chris Paul, LA Clippers
April 1 vs. L.A. Lakers: Recorded 29 points, 12 assists and four rebounds in a 115-104 win against the Lakers.
April 5 vs. Dallas: Registered 22 points, 11 assists and three rebounds in a 112-101 win over the Mavericks. 
April 10 vs. Houston: Contributed 19 points, nine assists, five rebounds and four steals in a 125-96 victory against the Rockets.
 
Other nominees for the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month were Boston’s Isaiah Thomas, Chicago’s Jimmy Butler, Cleveland’s LeBron James, Golden State’s Stephen Curry, Houston’s James Harden, the Clippers’ Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan, Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns, Portland’s Damian Lillard, Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan and Utah’s Gordon Hayward.

PACERS’ McMILLAN AND CLIPPERS’ RIVERS
NAMED NBA COACHES OF THE MONTH

NEW YORK, April 14, 2017 – The Indiana Pacers’ Nate McMillan and the LA Clippers’ Doc Rivers today were named the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Coaches of the Month, respectively, for games played in April.

McMillan guided the Pacers to a 5-1 record during April, tied for the best mark in the Eastern Conference.  Indiana closed the month and the regular season with five consecutive victories to secure the seventh playoff seed in the East.  For the month, the Pacers ranked third in the NBA in scoring (115.5 ppg) and fourth in field goal percentage (50.1) and point differential (plus-11.7).  Indiana’s only defeat was a 135-130 double-overtime loss to its first-round postseason opponent, the Cleveland Cavaliers.  Game 1 of the series is Saturday, April 15 at 3 p.m. ET on ABC.  

Behind Rivers, the Clippers went 5-0 in April to finish as the NBA’s only undefeated team for the month and extend their regular-season-ending winning streak to seven games.  LA outscored its opponents by a league-best 16.4 points per game and led the NBA in field goal percentage (51.5).  On the final day of the regular season, the Clippers defeated the Sacramento Kings 115-95 to clinch the fourth playoff seed in the Western Conference.  The Clippers will host the Utah Jazz in Game 1 of their first-round series on April 15 at 10:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.    

Other nominees for the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Coaches of the Month were Boston’s Brad Stevens, Chicago’s Fred Hoiberg, Denver’s Michael Malone, Golden State’s Steve Kerr, the Los Angeles Lakers’ Luke Walton, Miami’s Erik Spoelstra, Portland’s Terry Stotts, Toronto’s Dwane Casey and Utah’s Quin Snyder.

NEW YORK’S HERNANGOMEZ AND PHOENIX’S ULIS
NAMED KIA NBA ROOKIES OF THE MONTH
 
NEW YORK, April 14, 2017 – The New York Knicks’ Willy Hernangomez and the Phoenix Suns’ Tyler Ulis today were named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month, respectively, for games played in April.

Hernangomez, the 35th pick in NBA Draft 2015 presented by State Farm, led all Eastern Conference rookies in rebounding (8.5 rpg) and ranked second in scoring (12.5 ppg).  He was also fourth in assists (3.0 apg), steals (1.17 spg) and field goal percentage (49.2).  The 6-11 center from Spain scored in double figures in four of six games and recorded two double-doubles.  On April 9, Hernangomez matched his career highs with 24 points, five assists and three steals and grabbed 11 rebounds in a 110-97 loss to the Toronto Raptors.

Ulis, the 34th pick in NBA Draft 2016 presented by State Farm, paced all rookies with 20.7 points and 6.8 assists per game.  The 5-10 guard, who shot 48.5 percent from the field for the month, scored at least 20 points in four of six games.  On April 2, he registered the highest-scoring game by a rookie this season, finishing with 34 points to go with nine assists and a career-high nine rebounds in a 123-116 loss to the Houston Rockets.  Ulis also posted 20 points and 10 assists in a 124-111 win over the Dallas Mavericks on April 9.

Here is a recap of April for Hernangomez and Ulis:
 
Willy Hernangomez, New York Knicks
April 4 vs. Chicago: Finished with eight points, nine rebounds and three assists in a 100-91 victory over the Bulls.
April 7 @ Memphis: Contributed 11 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals in a 101-88 loss to the Grizzlies.
April 9 vs. Toronto: Posted 24 points, 11 rebounds, five assists and three steals in a 110-97 loss to the Raptors.

Tyler Ulis, Phoenix Suns
April 2 vs. Houston: Notched a near triple-double with 34 points, nine rebounds and nine assists in a 123-116 loss to the Rockets.
April 9 vs. Dallas: Recorded a double-double of 20 points and 10 assists in a 124-111 victory over the Mavericks.
April 11 @ Sacramento: Registered 27 points, six assists and four rebounds in a 129-104 loss to the Kings.
 
Other nominees for the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month were Brooklyn’s Caris LeVert, Denver’s Jamal Murray, Detroit’s Henry Ellenson, the Los Angeles Lakers’ Brandon Ingram, New Orleans’ Cheick Diallo, Philadelphia’s Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot and Dario Saric, Phoenix’s Marquese Chriss and Sacramento’s Buddy Hield and Skal Labissiere.

MAINE’S ABDEL NADER NAMED 2016-17 
NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

 
NEW YORK, April 14, 2017 – Maine Red Claws forward Abdel Nader today was named the 2016-17 NBA Development League Rookie of the Year. The award, voted on by the league’s 22 head coaches, recognizes the first-year professional who most significantly contributed to his team’s success during the season.

Nader (6-7, Iowa State) averaged 21.3 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.9 assists in 40 games, propelling the Red Claws to a 29-21 record and the Eastern Conference’s second seed in the 2017 NBA D-League Playoffs. In addition to shooting 44.6 percent from the floor, Nader recorded a team-high 99 three-pointers.

Nader led the Red Claws in scoring 16 times, logged five games with at least 30 points and posted three point-rebound double-doubles to help the Red Claws capture their third consecutive Atlantic Division title.  The 23-year-old tallied 16 points, four rebounds and four assists in this year’s NBA D-League All-Star Game in New Orleans.

Born in Alexandria, Egypt, Nader is the first internationally-born player to be named NBA D-League Rookie of the Year and the third Red Claws player to earn the honor. Selected by the Boston Celtics with the 58th overall pick in NBA Draft 2016 presented by State Farm, the Celtics hold Nader’s Draft rights.

Nader will be presented with the 2016-17 NBA D-League Rookie of the Year trophy prior to the Red Claws’ Eastern Conference Finals game against Raptors 905 on Sunday, April 16 at the Portland Exposition Building in Portland, Maine.

All-Time NBA D-League Rookie of the Year winners
2016-17: Abdel Nader, Maine Red Claws
2015-16: Quinn Cook, Canton Charge
2014-15: Tim Frazier, Maine Red Claws
2013-14: Robert Covington, Rio Grande Valley Vipers
2012-13: Tony Mitchell, Fort Wayne Mad Ants
2011-12: Edwin Ubiles, Dakota Wizards
2010-11: DeShawn Sims, Maine Red Claws
2009-10: Alonzo Gee, Austin Toros
2008-09: Othyus Jeffers, Iowa Energy
2007-08: Blake Ahearn, Dakota Wizards
2006-07: Louis Amundson, Colorado 14ers
2005-06: Will Bynum, Roanoke Dazzle
2004-05: James Thomas, Roanoke Dazzle
2003-04: Desmond Penigar, Asheville Altitude
2002-03: Devin Brown, Fayetteville Patriots
2001-02: Fred House, Charleston Lowgators

CANTON’S MIKE GANSEY NAMED 
NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE BASKETBALL EXECUTIVE OF THE YEAR  

NEW YORK, April 13, 2017 – Canton Charge General Manager Mike Gansey has been named the NBA Development League’s Basketball Executive of the Year, as selected by his fellow NBA D-League basketball executives.

Gansey presided over a Charge team that amassed a 29-21 regular season record, securing Canton’s sixth-consecutive trip to the NBA D-League postseason as the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference.

During the regular season, the Charge ranked in the top 10 in the league in points (110.1 ppg; 8th) and assists (21.5 apg; 10th) while holding opponents to 106.8 points, good for seventh in the NBA D-League.

Under Gansey’s leadership, the Charge helped to develop Cavaliers rookie Kay Felder, the 54th pick in NBA Draft 2016 presented by State Farm. The 5-8 guard averaged 29.9 points in 11 games on assignment from the Cleveland Cavaliers. Additionally, Charge guard Quinn Cook, the 2015-16 NBA D-League Rookie of the Year, earned GATORADE Call-Ups to the Dallas Mavericks and New Orleans Pelicans this season.  Gansey managed a Charge roster that featured 19 different players and 18 different starting lineups during the season.

Prior to the 2016-17 campaign, Gansey promoted longtime assistant coach Nate Reinking to head coach and hired NBA veteran Melvin Ely and Sam Jones, who enjoyed a successful playing career overseas, as assistant coaches.

Hired as the team’s general manager prior to the 2015-16 season, Gansey has held a leadership role in the Charge’s front office since 2012.  In addition to his role with the Charge, Gansey also serves as a scout for the Cavaliers.

All-Time NBA D-League Basketball Executive of the Year Award winners:

2016-17: Mike Gansey (Canton Charge)
2015-16: Adam Simon (Sioux Falls Skyforce)

NBA BREAKS ALL-TIME ATTENDANCE RECORD WITH 22 MILLION FANS
 
League Sets Attendance Records for Third Consecutive Year  

NEW YORK, April 13, 2017 – The NBA set the all-time regular-season attendance record for a third consecutive season with 21,997,412 fans attending games during the 2016-17 regular season.  The new record eclipses last year’s total of 21,972,129.

Additionally, the NBA established a new regular-season attendance record for average attendance (17,884), eclipsing the previous high set last year.  This year also marked the 13th straight season that league attendance has been at least 90 percent or more of arena capacity (94 percent).

The 2016-17 regular season tied last year’s sellout record (723), marking the third consecutive year the league had 700 or more games sold out.
              
Highest Total NBA Regular-Season Attendances All-Time
  1. 2016-17                 21,997,412
  2. 2015-16                 21,972,129
  3. 2014-15                 21,926,548
  4. 2006-07                 21,841,480
  5. 2005-06                 21,595,804
 Highest Average NBA Regular-Season Attendances All-Time
  1. 2016-17                 17,884
  2. 2015-16                 17,864
  3. 2014-15                 17,826
  4. 2006-07                 17,757
  5. 2005-06                 17,558
Along with record-setting attendance, the NBA set all-time marks for social media and retail. The league established new records across social media this season for impressions (42.6 billion, +40%) and video views (8.2 billion, +96%). Since the end of the 2015-16 regular season, 282 million new fans have joined the NBA’s social media community – a 27 percent increase. Overall, the league has more than 1.3 billion likes and followers combined across all league, team, and player social platforms worldwide.

In addition, NBAStore.com posted record-breaking sales during the 2016-17 regular season, up 15 percent.

The 2017 NBA Playoffs tip off Saturday, April 15, with 16 teams competing for a trip to The Finals and the chance to win The Larry O’Brien Trophy.
 
STEPHEN CURRY LEADS NBA’S MOST POPULAR JERSEYS LIST 
FOR SECOND CONSECUTIVE REGULAR SEASON
 
 Boston Celtics’ Isaiah Thomas Makes Debut on List 

NEW YORK, April 11, 2017 – The Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry once again leads the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) list of most popular jerseys.  This marks the second consecutive regular season Curry has earned top honors on the jerseys list.  Rankings are based on NBAStore.com sales since the beginning of the 2016-17 NBA season.

Rounding out the top five are the Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James (No. 2), the Warriors’ Kevin Durant (No. 3), the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook (No. 4) and the Cavaliers’ Kyrie Irving (No. 5).

The Warriors remain No. 1 on the team merchandise list, followed by the Cavaliers at No. 2, the Chicago Bulls at No. 3, the Los Angeles Lakers at No. 4 and the New York Knicks at No. 5.
Additional highlights:
  • The Boston Celtics’ Isaiah Thomas (No. 14) makes his debut on the list.
  • Westbrook (No. 4) and the Bulls’ Jimmy Butler (No. 8) earn their highest rankings.
  • The Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo climbs five spots to No. 9 after debuting on the last list (January 2017) at No. 14. 

Top 15 Most Popular NBA Jerseys:                       
  1. Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
  2. LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers
  3. Kevin Durant, Golden State Warriors
  4. Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
  5. Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers
  6. Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio Spurs
  7. Kristaps Porzingis, New York Knicks
  8. Jimmy Butler, Chicago Bulls
  9. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
  10. James Harden, Houston Rockets
  11. Dwyane Wade, Chicago Bulls
  12. Derrick Rose, New York Knicks
  13. Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors
  14. Isaiah Thomas, Boston Celtics
  15. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers 
Top 10 Most Popular Team Merchandise:
  1. Golden State Warriors
  2. Cleveland Cavaliers
  3. Chicago Bulls
  4. Lakers Los Angeles 
  5. New York Knicks
  6. San Antonio Spurs
  7. Oklahoma City Thunder
  8. Boston Celtics
  9. 76ersPhiladelphia 
  10. Toronto Raptors

INDIANA’S GEORGE AND OKLAHOMA CITY’S WESTBROOK NAMED
NBA EASTERN AND WESTERN CONFERENCE PLAYERS OF THE WEEK

 
NEW YORK, April 10, 2017 – The Indiana Pacers’ Paul George and the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook today were named NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for games played Monday, April 3 through Sunday, April 9.

George paced the East in scoring (31.7 ppg) and tied for seventh in rebounding (9.0 rpg) while shooting 57.4 percent from the field as the Pacers went 3-0 for the week to climb into seventh place in the East with two games to play. On April 4, he scored 18 points in the third quarter to helped erase a 19-point deficit before finishing with 35 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals in a 108-90 victory over the Toronto Raptors. On April 6, he tallied 23 points, 10 rebounds and four steals in a 104-89 win over the Milwaukee Bucks.

Westbrook led the Thunder to a 3-1 week behind averages of 32.5 points (second in the West), 12.5 rebounds (third) and 10.3 assists (third). On April 9, he recorded his 42nd triple-double with 50 points, 16 rebounds and 10 assists in a 106-105 victory over the Denver Nuggets, breaking Oscar Robertson’s 55-year-old record for most triple-doubles (41) in a season. It also marked the third time Westbrook scored 50 points in a triple-double this season. Westbrook also logged his 19th 40-point game of the season with 45 points in a 103-100 win against the Memphis Grizzlies on April 5.

Here is a recap of the week for George and Westbrook:
 
Paul George, Indiana Pacers 
April 4 vs. Toronto: Recorded 35 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals in a 108-90 victory over the Raptors.
April 6 vs. Milwaukee: Finished with 23 points, 10 rebounds and four steals in a 104-89 win over the Bucks.
April 8 @ Orlando: Poured in 37 points on 14-for-22 shooting to go with seven rebounds and six assists in a 127-112 victory over the Magic.

Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
April 4 vs. Milwaukee: Posted a triple-double with 12 points, 13 rebounds and 13 assists in a 110-79 win over the Bucks.
April 5 @ Memphis: Tallied 45 points, 10 assists, nine rebounds and a season-high four steals in a 103-100 victory over the Grizzlies.
April 7 @ Phoenix: Recorded 23 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists in a 120-99 loss to the Suns.
April 9 @ Denver: Scored 50 points to go with 16 rebounds and 10 assists in a 106-105 win over the Nuggets.
 

Other nominees for the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week were Atlanta’s Tim Hardaway Jr., Brooklyn’s Jeremy Lin, Golden State’s Klay Thompson, Houston’s James Harden, the LA Clippers’ Blake Griffin, Miami’s Hassan Whiteside, Phoenix’s Devin Booker, Portland’s Damian Lillard, and Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan.

NBA TO EXPAND CRITERIA FOR “LAST TWO MINUTES”  OFFICIATING REPORTS DURING 2017 PLAYOFFS

– All Games Within Three Points in Final Two Minutes to Be Included 

NEW YORK, April 7, 2017 – The NBA announced today that the criteria for “Last Two Minutes” officiating reports will expand for the 2017 playoffs, which begin Saturday, April 15.

The NBA will continue to release play-by-play reports of all calls and material non-calls in the last two minutes of the fourth quarter or the last two minutes of any overtime period for all games within five points at the two-minute mark of the relevant period.

In an expansion to the criteria for this year’s playoffs, Last Two Minute Reports will also be issued for all games within three points at any stage in the last two minutes of the fourth quarter or the last two minutes of any overtime period.  The change continues recent efforts to bring additional transparency to the NBA’s officiating program.

Overseen by the NBA’s League Operations senior management team, the Last Two Minute Reports have created a more specific protocol for commenting on the most scrutinized calls in games.  The reports are one of several steps taken by the league to help build greater awareness and understanding of the rules and processes that govern the game.

The 2016-17 season marks the second full season of Last Two Minute Reports.  For qualifying games this season through April 5, NBA referees’ call accuracy is 98 percent and their event accuracy is 91.3 percent in the periods covered by the reports.

Last Two Minute Reports are posted on NBA.com/official by 5 p.m. ET the day after each game.  A complete archive of reports is available at NBA.com/official.
 
RIO GRANDE VALLEY’S ISAIAH TAYLOR NAMED 
NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE PERFORMER OF THE WEEK

NEW YORK, April 3, 2017 – Isaiah Taylor of the Rio Grande Valley Vipers today was named NBA Development League Performer of the Week for games played Monday, March 27 through Sunday, April 2.

Taylor (6-3, Texas) helped Rio Grande Valley earn two wins in the final week of the regular season to secure the number three seed in the Western Conference. He averaged 31.5 points (second in the league) on 61.1 percent shooting to go with 5.0 assists and 2.5 rebound. Taylor connected on 11-for-16 three-point attempts (68.8 percent).

On March 30, Taylor tallied 30 points, six assists and three rebounds in a 131-122 victory over the Texas Legends. He followed up with a 33-point performance, including the game-winning three-pointer with 0.4 seconds remaining, in a 118-115 win over the Iowa Energy on April 1.

For the season, Taylor is averaging 21.0 points, 6.0 and 3.0 rebounds. He was recalled to the Houston Rockets on April 2, and scored three points in 15 minutes in his NBA debut.

Other top performers considered were Canton’s John Holland, Grand Rapids’ Lorenzo Brown, Greensboro’s Damien Wilkins, Los Angeles’ Vander Blue, Northern Arizona’s Elijah Millsap, Oklahoma City’s Josh Huestis, Santa Cruz’s Jabari Brown and Texas’ Jameel Warney.

BUCKS’ ANTETOKOUNMPO AND TRAIL BLAZERS’ LILLARD
NAMED KIA NBA PLAYERS OF THE MONTH

NEW YORK, April 3, 2017 – The Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Portland Trail Blazers’ Damian Lillard today were named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month, respectively, for games played in March.

Antetokounmpo helped the Bucks finish an Eastern Conference-best 14-4 in March, the franchise’s first calendar month with at least 14 victories since going 16-2 in February 1971.  The 22-year-old from Greece averaged 22.4 points (ninth in the East), 8.4 rebounds (10th in the East), 4.8 assists, 1.78 blocked shots (fourth in the East) and 1.33 steals in 18 games.  He also shot 51.4 percent from the field, his fifth straight month above 50.0.  Antetokounmpo posted five point-rebound double-doubles during the month, including three that featured more than 30 points each.  The All-Star forward capped the month by recording 28 points, 14 rebounds and nine assists in a 108-105 overtime victory against the Detroit Pistons on March 31.    

Behind Lillard, the Trail Blazers went an NBA-best 13-3 in March to surge into eighth place in the Western Conference.  Lillard ranked third in the NBA in scoring (29.1 ppg) and tied for fourth in three-pointers made (55) to go with 6.0 assists, 4.4 rebounds and 1.44 steals in 16 games.  The 26-year-old guard shot 48.3 percent from the field, 41.7 percent from three-point range and 87.7 percent from the free throw line.  Lillard posted eight games with at least 30 points, including a season-high 49-point performance in a 115-104 road win over the Miami Heat on March 19.  He matched a career high with nine three-pointers and hit 12-of-12 at the free throw line against Miami.  

Here is a recap of March for Antetokounmpo and Lillard:
 
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
March 8 vs. New York: Notched 32 points, 13 rebounds, seven assists and four steals in a 104-93 victory against the Knicks.
March 22 @ Sacramento: Scored 32 points, grabbed 14 rebounds and handed out five assists in a 116-98 win over the Kings.
March 24 vs. Atlanta: Finished with 34 points, 13 rebounds, five assists, three blocks and two steals in a 100-97 win against the Hawks.

Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
March 2 vs. Oklahoma City: Contributed 33 points, five assists and four rebounds in a 114-109 victory over the Thunder.
March 15 @ San Antonio: Scored 36 points and added four assists, three rebounds and two steals in a 110-106 win over the Spurs.
March 30 vs. Houston: Recorded 31 points, 11 assists and four rebounds in a 117-107 win against the Rockets.
 

Other nominees for the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month were Indiana’s Paul George, Golden State’s Stephen Curry, Houston’s James Harden, LA Clippers’ Blake Griffin, Miami’s Hassan Whiteside and Goran Dragic, New Orleans’ Anthony Davis, Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook, Phoenix’s Devin Booker and Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan.
 
PHILADELPHIA’S SARIC AND SACRAMENTO’S HIELD
NAMED KIA NBA ROOKIES OF THE MONTH

 
NEW YORK, April 3, 2017 – The Philadelphia 76ers’ Dario Saric and the Sacramento Kings’ Buddy Hield today were named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month, respectively, for games played in March.

Saric, the 12th pick in NBA Draft 2014 presented by State Farm, earned the Eastern Conference honor for the second month in a row.  In March, Saric led all rookies in scoring (18.4 ppg), field goals made (115) and free throws made (54).  He also ranked second in rebounding (7.0 rpg), third in three-pointers made (28) and fourth in assists (3.4 apg).  The 22-year-old forward from Croatia scored at least 20 points in seven of 17 games and recorded two point-rebound double-doubles.  On March 24, Saric scored a career-high 32 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in Philadelphia’s 117-107 road victory over the Chicago Bulls.

Hield was also named the Kia NBA Western Conference Player of the Month for December, when he played with the New Orleans Pelicans.  Acquired by Sacramento in a trade with New Orleans on Feb. 20, Hield led West rookies in scoring in March with 14.1 points per game.  The 23-year-old guard from the Bahamas made a rookie-high 37 three-pointers and averaged 4.1 rebounds for the month.  Hield, the sixth pick in NBA Draft 2016 presented by State Farm, shot 48.3 percent from the field, 42.5 percent from three-point range (third among all rookies) and 84.0 percent from the free throw line (second among West rookies).  

Here is a recap of March for Saric and Hield:
 
Dario Saric, Philadelphia 76ers
March 3 vs. New York: Recorded 21 points, 10 rebounds and four assists in a 105-102 win over the Knicks.
March 12 @ L.A. Lakers: Posted 29 points, seven rebounds, five assists and two steals in a 118-116 victory over the Lakers.
March 19 vs. Boston: Finished with 23 points, six rebounds, four assists and two steals in a 105-99 win against the Celtics.

Buddy Hield, Sacramento Kings
March 13 vs. Orlando: Registered 17 points, six rebounds, two assists and two steals in a 120-115 victory against the Magic.
March 24 @ Golden State: Set career highs with 22 points, eight rebounds and seven assists in a 114-100 loss to the Warriors.
March 26 @ LA Clippers: Scored 15 points and grabbed seven rebounds in a 98-97 win over the Clippers.
 
Other nominees for the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month were Boston’s Jaylen Brown, Brooklyn’s Caris LeVert and Isaiah Whitehead, Denver’s Jamal Murray, the Los Angeles Lakers’ Brandon Ingram and Ivica Zubac, Miami’s Rodney McGruder, Milwaukee’s Malcolm Brogdon, New York’s Willy Hernangomez, Phoenix’s Marquese Chriss and Tyler Ulis, and Sacramento’s Skal Labissiere.
 
SANTA CRUZ WARRIORS’ DAMIAN JONES NAMED
NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE PLAYER OF THE MONTH

NEW YORK, April 3, 2017  Santa Cruz Warriors center Damian Jones today was named the NBA Development League Player of the Month for games played in March and April.

Jones (6-10, Vanderbilt) helped Santa Cruz to an 11-2 record in March and April as the Warriors earned the fourth seed in the Western Conference for the 2017 NBA D-League Playoffs, which tip off on Tuesday, April 4.  He appeared in 12 of the team’s 13 games while on assignment from the Golden State Warriors, averaging 17.6 points (on 65 percent shooting from the field) and 7.8 rebounds.

Jones scored in double figures in all 12 games, including a season-high 25 points in a 127-117 win over the Los Angeles D-Fenders on March 31.  During March and April, he recorded three point-rebound double-doubles and grabbed 12 rebounds three times.

Selected in the first round (30th overall) of the 2016 NBA Draft by Golden State, Jones has averaged 11.3 points, 7.2 rebounds and 2.1 blocks in 31 games for Santa Cruz this season.

Other players who received consideration for the monthly award were Canton’s John Holland, Delaware’s Russ Smith, Fort Wayne’s Tyler Hansbrough, Long Island’s Cliff Alexander, Northern Arizona’s Xavier Silas, Oklahoma City’s Daniel Hamilton, Raptors 905’s Brady Heslip, Rio Grande Valley’s Isaiah Taylor, Texas’ Jameel Warney and Windy City’s Wesley Saunders.   

SANTA CRUZ WARRIORS’ CASEY HILL NAMED 
NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE COACH OF THE MONTH
 
NEW YORK, April 3, 2017 – Santa Cruz Warriors head coach Casey Hill today was named NBA Development League Coach of the Month for games played in March and April.

Hill guided the Warriors to an 11-2 record in March and April, including six road wins.  Santa Cruz finished the season on a six-game winning streak to earn the fourth seed in the Western Conference for the 2017 NBA D-League Playoffs, which tip off on Tuesday, April 4.

Under Hill, the Warriors averaged 121.9 points per game during March and April, the third-best mark in the NBA D-League.  They also led the NBA D-League in rebounding with 48.5 per game.

In his fourth season as Warriors head coach, Hill has amassed a 114-86 regular-season record while guiding his team to three playoff appearances and the 2015 NBA D-League championship.

Other coaches who received consideration for the monthly award were Northern Arizona’s Ty Ellis, Raptors 905’s Jerry Stackhouse, Rio Grande Valley’s Matt Brase, Texas’ Bob MacKinnon and Windy City’s Nate Loenser.

INDIANA’S GEORGE AND OKLAHOMA CITY’S WESTBROOK NAMED
NBA EASTERN AND WESTERN CONFERENCE PLAYERS OF THE WEEK

 
NEW YORK, April 10, 2017 – The Indiana Pacers’ Paul George and the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook today were named NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for games played Monday, April 3 through Sunday, April 9.

George paced the East in scoring (31.7 ppg) and tied for seventh in rebounding (9.0 rpg) while shooting 57.4 percent from the field as the Pacers went 3-0 for the week to climb into seventh place in the East with two games to play. On April 4, he scored 18 points in the third quarter to helped erase a 19-point deficit before finishing with 35 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals in a 108-90 victory over the Toronto Raptors. On April 6, he tallied 23 points, 10 rebounds and four steals in a 104-89 win over the Milwaukee Bucks.

Westbrook led the Thunder to a 3-1 week behind averages of 32.5 points (second in the West), 12.5 rebounds (third) and 10.3 assists (third). On April 9, he recorded his 42nd triple-double with 50 points, 16 rebounds and 10 assists in a 106-105 victory over the Denver Nuggets, breaking Oscar Robertson’s 55-year-old record for most triple-doubles (41) in a season. It also marked the third time Westbrook scored 50 points in a triple-double this season. Westbrook also logged his 19th 40-point game of the season with 45 points in a 103-100 win against the Memphis Grizzlies on April 5.

Here is a recap of the week for George and Westbrook:
 
Paul George, Indiana Pacers 
April 4 vs. Toronto: Recorded 35 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals in a 108-90 victory over the Raptors.
April 6 vs. Milwaukee: Finished with 23 points, 10 rebounds and four steals in a 104-89 win over the Bucks.
April 8 @ Orlando: Poured in 37 points on 14-for-22 shooting to go with seven rebounds and six assists in a 127-112 victory over the Magic.

Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
April 4 vs. Milwaukee: Posted a triple-double with 12 points, 13 rebounds and 13 assists in a 110-79 win over the Bucks.
April 5 @ Memphis: Tallied 45 points, 10 assists, nine rebounds and a season-high four steals in a 103-100 victory over the Grizzlies.
April 7 @ Phoenix: Recorded 23 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists in a 120-99 loss to the Suns.
April 9 @ Denver: Scored 50 points to go with 16 rebounds and 10 assists in a 106-105 win over the Nuggets.
 

Other nominees for the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week were Atlanta’s Tim Hardaway Jr., Brooklyn’s Jeremy Lin, Golden State’s Klay Thompson, Houston’s James Harden, the LA Clippers’ Blake Griffin, Miami’s Hassan Whiteside, Phoenix’s Devin Booker, Portland’s Damian Lillard, and Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan.

MAINE’S ABDEL NADER NAMED 2016-17 
NBA DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

 
NEW YORK, April 14, 2017 – Maine Red Claws forward Abdel Nader today was named the 2016-17 NBA Development League Rookie of the Year. The award, voted on by the league’s 22 head coaches, recognizes the first-year professional who most significantly contributed to his team’s success during the season.

Nader (6-7, Iowa State) averaged 21.3 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.9 assists in 40 games, propelling the Red Claws to a 29-21 record and the Eastern Conference’s second seed in the 2017 NBA D-League Playoffs. In addition to shooting 44.6 percent from the floor, Nader recorded a team-high 99 three-pointers.

Nader led the Red Claws in scoring 16 times, logged five games with at least 30 points and posted three point-rebound double-doubles to help the Red Claws capture their third consecutive Atlantic Division title.  The 23-year-old tallied 16 points, four rebounds and four assists in this year’s NBA D-League All-Star Game in New Orleans.

Born in Alexandria, Egypt, Nader is the first internationally-born player to be named NBA D-League Rookie of the Year and the third Red Claws player to earn the honor. Selected by the Boston Celtics with the 58th overall pick in NBA Draft 2016 presented by State Farm, the Celtics hold Nader’s Draft rights.

Nader will be presented with the 2016-17 NBA D-League Rookie of the Year trophy prior to the Red Claws’ Eastern Conference Finals game against Raptors 905 on Sunday, April 16 at the Portland Exposition Building in Portland, Maine.

All-Time NBA D-League Rookie of the Year winners
2016-17: Abdel Nader, Maine Red Claws
2015-16: Quinn Cook, Canton Charge
2014-15: Tim Frazier, Maine Red Claws
2013-14: Robert Covington, Rio Grande Valley Vipers
2012-13: Tony Mitchell, Fort Wayne Mad Ants
2011-12: Edwin Ubiles, Dakota Wizards
2010-11: DeShawn Sims, Maine Red Claws
2009-10: Alonzo Gee, Austin Toros
2008-09: Othyus Jeffers, Iowa Energy
2007-08: Blake Ahearn, Dakota Wizards
2006-07: Louis Amundson, Colorado 14ers
2005-06: Will Bynum, Roanoke Dazzle
2004-05: James Thomas, Roanoke Dazzle
2003-04: Desmond Penigar, Asheville Altitude
2002-03: Devin Brown, Fayetteville Patriots
2001-02: Fred House, Charleston Lowgators
 
NEW YORK’S HERNANGOMEZ AND PHOENIX’S ULIS
NAMED KIA NBA ROOKIES OF THE MONTH
 
NEW YORK, April 14, 2017 – The New York Knicks’ Willy Hernangomez and the Phoenix Suns’ Tyler Ulis today were named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month, respectively, for games played in April.

Hernangomez, the 35th pick in NBA Draft 2015 presented by State Farm, led all Eastern Conference rookies in rebounding (8.5 rpg) and ranked second in scoring (12.5 ppg).  He was also fourth in assists (3.0 apg), steals (1.17 spg) and field goal percentage (49.2).  The 6-11 center from Spain scored in double figures in four of six games and recorded two double-doubles.  On April 9, Hernangomez matched his career highs with 24 points, five assists and three steals and grabbed 11 rebounds in a 110-97 loss to the Toronto Raptors.

Ulis, the 34th pick in NBA Draft 2016 presented by State Farm, paced all rookies with 20.7 points and 6.8 assists per game.  The 5-10 guard, who shot 48.5 percent from the field for the month, scored at least 20 points in four of six games.  On April 2, he registered the highest-scoring game by a rookie this season, finishing with 34 points to go with nine assists and a career-high nine rebounds in a 123-116 loss to the Houston Rockets.  Ulis also posted 20 points and 10 assists in a 124-111 win over the Dallas Mavericks on April 9.

Here is a recap of April for Hernangomez and Ulis:
 
Willy Hernangomez, New York Knicks
April 4 vs. Chicago: Finished with eight points, nine rebounds and three assists in a 100-91 victory over the Bulls.
April 7 @ Memphis: Contributed 11 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals in a 101-88 loss to the Grizzlies.
April 9 vs. Toronto: Posted 24 points, 11 rebounds, five assists and three steals in a 110-97 loss to the Raptors.

Tyler Ulis, Phoenix Suns
April 2 vs. Houston: Notched a near triple-double with 34 points, nine rebounds and nine assists in a 123-116 loss to the Rockets.
April 9 vs. Dallas: Recorded a double-double of 20 points and 10 assists in a 124-111 victory over the Mavericks.
April 11 @ Sacramento: Registered 27 points, six assists and four rebounds in a 129-104 loss to the Kings.
 
Other nominees for the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month were Brooklyn’s Caris LeVert, Denver’s Jamal Murray, Detroit’s Henry Ellenson, the Los Angeles Lakers’ Brandon Ingram, New Orleans’ Cheick Diallo, Philadelphia’s Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot and Dario Saric, Phoenix’s Marquese Chriss and Sacramento’s Buddy Hield and Skal Labissiere.

PACERS’ McMILLAN AND CLIPPERS’ RIVERS
NAMED NBA COACHES OF THE MONTH

NEW YORK, April 14, 2017 – The Indiana Pacers’ Nate McMillan and the LA Clippers’ Doc Rivers today were named the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Coaches of the Month, respectively, for games played in April.

McMillan guided the Pacers to a 5-1 record during April, tied for the best mark in the Eastern Conference.  Indiana closed the month and the regular season with five consecutive victories to secure the seventh playoff seed in the East.  For the month, the Pacers ranked third in the NBA in scoring (115.5 ppg) and fourth in field goal percentage (50.1) and point differential (plus-11.7).  Indiana’s only defeat was a 135-130 double-overtime loss to its first-round postseason opponent, the Cleveland Cavaliers.  Game 1 of the series is Saturday, April 15 at 3 p.m. ET on ABC.  

Behind Rivers, the Clippers went 5-0 in April to finish as the NBA’s only undefeated team for the month and extend their regular-season-ending winning streak to seven games.  LA outscored its opponents by a league-best 16.4 points per game and led the NBA in field goal percentage (51.5).  On the final day of the regular season, the Clippers defeated the Sacramento Kings 115-95 to clinch the fourth playoff seed in the Western Conference.  The Clippers will host the Utah Jazz in Game 1 of their first-round series on April 15 at 10:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.    

Other nominees for the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Coaches of the Month were Boston’s Brad Stevens, Chicago’s Fred Hoiberg, Denver’s Michael Malone, Golden State’s Steve Kerr, the Los Angeles Lakers’ Luke Walton, Miami’s Erik Spoelstra, Portland’s Terry Stotts, Toronto’s Dwane Casey and Utah’s Quin Snyder.

PACERS’ GEORGE AND CLIPPERS’ PAUL 
NAMED KIA NBA PLAYERS OF THE MONTH
 
NEW YORK, April 14, 2017 – The Indiana Pacers’ Paul George and the LA Clippers’ Chris Paul today were named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month, respectively, for games played in April.

George averaged an NBA-high 32.8 points and added 8.2 rebounds and 4.5 assists as the Pacers went 5-1 in April to clinch a playoff spot for the sixth time in seven seasons.  He scored at least 30 points in four of six games, including a season-high 43 points in a 135-130 double-overtime loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on April 2.  The 26-year-old forward shot 54.8 percent from the field and 42.4 percent from three-point range for the month.  He also finished third in the NBA in steals with 2.17 per game.  George and the Pacers will visit the Cavaliers on Saturday, April 15 for Game 1 of a first-round postseason series (3 p.m. ET, ABC).  

Paul led the Clippers to a 5-0 month behind averages of 21.2 points, 9.8 assists (fourth in the NBA) and 5.0 rebounds, helping LA clinch the fourth seed in the Western Conference and secure home-court advantage against the Utah Jazz in the first round of the playoffs.  The 31-year-old guard shot 54.4 percent from the field and 52.6 percent from three-point range and went 22-for-22 from the free throw line in April.  He finished with 19 points, eight rebounds and eight assists in a 98-87 road win against the San Antonio Spurs on April 8.  The Clippers, who have made the playoffs a franchise-record six consecutive seasons since acquiring Paul, will host the Jazz in Game 1 on April 15 (10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN).    

Here is a recap of April for George and Paul:
 
Paul George, Indiana Pacers
April 4 vs. Toronto: Notched 35 points, 10 rebounds and three assists in a 108-90 victory against the Raptors.
April 6 vs. Milwaukee: Finished with 23 points, 10 rebounds and five steals in a 104-89 win over the Bucks.
April 12 vs. Atlanta: Made five three-pointers on his way to 32 points and added 11 rebounds in a 104-86 victory over the Hawks.

Chris Paul, LA Clippers
April 1 vs. L.A. Lakers: Recorded 29 points, 12 assists and four rebounds in a 115-104 win against the Lakers.
April 5 vs. Dallas: Registered 22 points, 11 assists and three rebounds in a 112-101 win over the Mavericks. 
April 10 vs. Houston: Contributed 19 points, nine assists, five rebounds and four steals in a 125-96 victory against the Rockets.
 
Other nominees for the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month were Boston’s Isaiah Thomas, Chicago’s Jimmy Butler, Cleveland’s LeBron James, Golden State’s Stephen Curry, Houston’s James Harden, the Clippers’ Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan, Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns, Portland’s Damian Lillard, Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan and Utah’s Gordon Hayward.