Lakers star Kobe Bryant is dealing with a couple of injuries, but insists that nothing will slow him down.
He has dealt with a broken index finger on his shooting hand, a strained elbow and several other ailments this season.
“Injuries don’t affect me,” said Bryant, who hasn’t missed a game.
“I’m not going to sit here and say I’ve got a (bad) knee, I’ve got a (bad) finger. I’m fine. I’m more than fine. I always keep playing.”
Some NBA executives believe that the Hornets may not be able to avoid dealing away David West before the February 18 trade deadline.
Trading West would ensure that the Hornets stay under this season’s luxury tax threshold.
The Hornets would likely prefer to move Emeka Okafor, Peja Stojakovic, James Posey, Mo Peterson, Darius Songaila or Julian Wright.
But finding a taker for any of these other players will be more difficult than doing so for West.
The 16 games Jameer Nelson missed with a knee injury were not much of a problem for the Orlando Magic but his return to the lineup could be.
Backup Jason Williams was far more instrumental in the Magic’s 117-92 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday, as Nelson was the only Orlando player with a negative plus/minus at minus-12.
Stan Van Gundy said there were extenuating circumstances behind Wednesday’s performance. Still, the coach sounded frustrated about Nelson’s limited ability to practice after his knee swelled up following the Christmas Day loss to Boston.
Bad news for the NBA…
Rasheed Wallace is getting the Tim Donaghy book.
“I want to check it out and see what’s there,” Wallace said last night.
GM Danny Ainge passed on word to Wallace from the NBA that he should watch his critical statements, but the forward will not bow to the request.
Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge sprained his left ankle in the team’s win over the Clippers on Wednesday night.
Aldridge left the game with 5:40 left in the first quarter.
“This has gone past crazy,” Portland coach Nate McMillan said.
“It’s bad luck, or whatever, to continue to see our guys drop the way that we are. To walk into the locker room and see LaMarcus Aldridge in a boot — not just a swollen ankle — but a boot. It’s a credit to these guys.”
Well, it probably did not go as far as kissing and making up between John Kuester and Charlie Villanueva.
But the Pistons coach and backup power forward did have long a discussion after Wednesday’s practice session.
Kuester gave Villanueva the key to staying on the floor after he expressed frustration over playing only 12 minutes in Tuesday night’s home blowout loss to the Knicks.
As far as NBA players go, Steve Nash qualifies as a senior citizen. Many of the league’s point guards are at least 10 years younger than Nash, who is more hippie than hip-hop.
But nearing his 36th birthday, Nash is showing no signs of decline. In fact, he just might be playing better offensively as any over-35 point guard ever.
“It’s incredible,” said Mark Jackson, who ranks third all-time in assists behind John Stockton and Jason Kidd. “To me, he is in a discussion with any other point guard that has played this game not named Magic.”
Darko Milicic insists that the Pistons lied to him after taking him with the second pick in the 2003 NBA Draft.
“Yes, they did,” Milicic said.
“They lie to everybody. It’s the NBA. The NBA, all around the league, same (garbage). ‘Your chance is going to come.’ All that kind of (garbage). (Forget) that.
“I’ve got enough of that kind of stuff, so I decided I’m going to Europe.”
Milicic announced earlier this season that he plans to return to Europe next summer.
With Tracy McGrady being sent home as the Rockets look to deal him, the Bulls are one of the teams expected to call Houston.
Ten years ago, McGrady chose the Magic when the Bulls had cap room and tried to sign him as a free-agent.
“Whoever gets me is going to get a hungry player,” McGrady said recently.
“I don’t care if I go to the moon. It doesn’t matter.”
The Bulls have expiring contracts in Brad Miller and Jerome James. The team may also want to include John Salmons in a deal for McGrady.
Portland could sign free-agent forward Shavlik Randolph as soon as today, a source told the Oregonian.
Randolph appeared in 10 games for the Trail Blazers last season.
He will be signed to a non-guaranteed contract and will take the place of Anthony Tolliver, who was waived Tuesday.