Utah Jazz vs. Los Angeles Lakers: Live Score, Highlights and Reaction

Gordon Hayward, Derrick Favors and the Utah Jazz will get their second preseason meeting with Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers Sunday in L.A.

The Jazz won the first meeting by a final score of 119-86.


Tipoff: 9:30 p.m. ET

Coverage: TWC SN/Root Sports


Keys to the Game

The Jazz overwhelmed the Lakers with a combination of athleticism and balanced scoring in the first game. Five players reached double figures, and 10 scored at least seven. If they push the pace again, the Lakers defense is likely to look every bit as hapless.

For L.A., this preseason continues to be about how Kobe Bryant looks. He scored 27 in the first meeting against Utah, but it took 23 shots to get there. Age and injuries have clearly taken their toll, so much of this season could be about adjusting for him.

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Dallas Mavericks vs. Cleveland Cavaliers: Live Score, Highlights and Reaction

LeBron James, Kevin Love and the rest of the Cleveland Cavaliers (4-0) continue their preseason tuneup Friday against Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks (1-2).

Both teams have the early part of their rotations more or less set. So, the rest of the preseason will be about fine-tuning and figuring out who can provide depth during the season.


Tipoff7:30 p.m. ET

Coverage: NBATV


Keys to the Game

For both the Mavericks and the Cavaliers, the key to this game is continuing the development of chemistry and continuity among new teammates.

Cleveland is integrating several new faces, including Love and James. Dallas is working on getting Chandler Parsons, Tyson Chandler and plenty of bench players familiar with the system.


For live updates and analysis, stay tuned to Bleacher Report throughout the game.

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Detroit Pistons vs. Washington Wizards Live Blog: Instant Reactions and Analysis

The 2-1 Washington Wizards will host the 2-0 Detroit Pistons in the Verizon Center at 1 p.m. ET Sunday.

The Pistons are coming off of a win against the Milwaukee Bucks that featured a 20-point game from second-year player Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. In just their third game under Stan Van Gundy, the Pistons still have a lot to prove and learn.

The Wizards were defeated by the Charlotte Hornets in their last preseason game, a game that saw Bradley Beal break his wrist. The talented guard will miss up to two months, adding to injury concerns that the Wizards already had.

Check back around 12:30 p.m. ET today for the beginning of coverage.

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Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Miami Heat: Live Score and Highlights from NBA Preseason

LeBron James will square off against his old pals from South Beach when the Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat meet for a preseason clash Saturday in Rio de Janeiro.  

Following a victorious exhibition opener against Maccabi Tel Aviv, the Cavaliers will get a chance to see how their new-look roster performs against premier NBA talent. 

However, Cleveland will be without one key member of its superstar triumvirate. According to Bleacher Report’s Ethan Skolnick, point guard Kyrie Irving will miss Saturday’s contest as he continues to deal with a sprained right ankle. 

As for Miami, head coach Erik Spoelstra’s bunch will continue to work toward implementing an offense that flows primarily through James’ former teammate, Chris Bosh

Two games into the exhibition season, Bosh is averaging 13.5 points in 24 minutes of action per night. Bosh has also been pulling down an average of 7.5 rebounds during that brief span, while Dwyane Wade is coming off of an 11-point performance (5-of-10 shooting) against the Orlando Magic.

You can catch all the action at 5 p.m. ET on ESPNews.

Keep it locked here on Bleacher Report for real-time updates, highlights and analysis of tonight’s preseason festivities from Brazil. 

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UNC Basketball: Will Marcus Paige Live Up to 2014-15 Preseason Hype?

North Carolina’s Marcus Paige is piling up one preseason distinction after another.

It is no surprise. The 6’1″ Marion, Iowa, native is one of the best backcourt players in college basketball.

During the summer, both Sporting News’ Mike DeCourcy and ESPN’s Jeff Goodman (Insider subscription required) named Paige as the nation’s top point guard.

This week, CBSSports.com’s Gary Parrish placed him on his 2014-15 Preseason All-American First Team.

Last year, as a sophomore, Paige emerged as Carolina’s points, assists, FT percentage, three-point percentage and minutes-played leader.

Even though the Tar Heels’ roster is talented and deep, UNC’s ultimate fortune is tied to Paige’s junior-year achievements.

Can he sustain his sophmore success? Will Paige carry the day under the media buildup?

Three qualities of his game suggest that he will more than live up to the hype.


Positional Flexibility

As a freshman, Paige played entirely at one position: point guard.

Last year, because of the Tar Heels’ early-season roster uncertainties, he was forced out of playing only the point.

Paige slid over to the shooting guard position for most of UNC’s first nine games, averaging 19.2 PPG before Leslie McDonald’s return.

For the remaining 25 contests, he moved back and forth in Roy Williams’ backcourt.

Even with numerous skilled perimeter players at his disposal for the upcoming season, Williams can still utilize Paige where he can do the most damage based on the Heels’ opponents.

His ability to switch positions during games and throughout the season will increase Carolina’s chances of improving on its 24-10 2013-14 mark. 


Skills Versatility

Paige is far from a one-dimensional player.

Though he was recruited strictly as a point guard out of high school, Paige demonstrated his scoring skill, according to his UNC bio, when he averaged over 28 PPG as a senior.

While shouldering a sizable portion of the Heels’ scoring load a year ago, Paige still dished out a team-leading 4.2 APG with a solid 2.0 assist-to-turnover ratio.

Even though he is not known nationally as a lockdown defender, Paige is more than able to be a stopper on the other end of the court.

Inside Carolina’s Dijana Kunovac tweeted Williams comments about Paige’s defensive capabilities: 

J.P. Tokoto may take issue with who’s deemed the top Tar Heel defender.

Regardless, whatever Carolina needs, Paige can deliver.

When the Tar Heels need him to score, he can fill it up. When they have mismatches at other positions, Paige can distribute the ball with the best of them.

If they need a steal, he is able to poach the passing lanes or pick someone’s pocket.

Paige is set up for another super season because he can do so many different things well.


Late-Game Tenacity

Paige became widely known last year as one of the most clutch late-game collegiate scorers.

Not only did he hit his share of game-winners last year, Paige was flat-out money in the second half of numerous UNC games.

The News Observer‘s Luke Decock pulled back the curtain on something that is true:

At least once in every North Carolina practice so far, Roy Williams has turned to his team and pointed at junior guard Marcus Paige.

“This is our best player,” Williams said he told the group. “Don’t anybody forget that.”

Paige does not flinch when the clock is running down, and the game is on the line. He is ready to put his team on his back when necessary.

There is no question as to who will have the ball in his hands at the end.


Looking Ahead

Paige has set lofty team goals for this season.

Carolina Blue’s Brooke Pryor conveyed his mindset:

He isn’t shy about his personal goal for this team — Final Four or bust. No more going home after the first weekend of the NCAA tournament.

“Personally, I’ve set a goal of at least making it to the Final Four,” he said. “That’s something I’ve wanted to do since I got here, haven’t had the chance obviously.

With this as his focus, Paige is determined to get the Heels to Indy in April. 

This will be accomplished as he elevates his performance again this year and lives up to the hype.

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Golden State Warriors vs. Los Angeles Clippers: Live Score and Analysis

The Golden State Warriors visit the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday night as both teams kick off their preseason schedules.

This exhibition tussle won’t just gauge the early results from Chris Paul and Stephen Curry. Winds of change have transformed both franchises, and this game begins the ownership of Steve Ballmer in L.A. and Steve Kerr’s coaching tenure with the Dubs. 

The game tips off at 10:30 p.m. ET. You can watch it unfold on NBA TV. 

Keep it right here for all the action and analysis before, during and after the game. 

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Denver Nuggets vs. Los Angeles Lakers: Live Score and Analysis

Kobe Bryant will make his much-anticipated return to the basketball court when the Los Angeles Lakers host the Denver Nuggets in preseason action at the Staples Center Monday night.

Bryant experienced a tumultuous 2013-14 campaign. Shortly after returning from a ruptured Achilles that kept him out of the 2013 playoffs, the future Hall of Famer fractured his tibia, forcing him to miss the final four months of the season.

Now, Bryant gets his chance to show the world he can still play the game at a high level. It should be very interesting to see how he looks in this exhibition bout against the Nuggets, who will look to bounce back from a disappointing season themselves.

Catch all of the action at 10 p.m. ET on NBATV.

Keep it right here as Bleacher Report provides you with live coverage throughout the game.

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Bulls vs. Wizards: Live Score and Highlights from 2014 NBA Preseason

At long last, the NBA offseason will conclude for the Washington Wizards and Chicago Bulls, two teams eager to start the 2014-15 campaign.

Looking to build on an appearance in the Eastern Conference semifinals, John Wall, Bradley Beal and Marcin Gortat lead a rising Wizards squad that added veteran Paul Pierce to replace Trevor Ariza.

Washington also signed DeJuan Blair, who, despite being undersized for his position, provides a legitimate frontcourt option behind Nene Hilario.

The Bulls managed a fourth-place finish in the East, and three key contributorsJoakim Noah, Taj Gibson and Jimmy Butler—return for Tom Thibodeau’s team.

Point guard Derrick Rose participated in the 2014 FIBA World Cup, but tonight marks the first game action for the explosive offensive weapon on American soil since a season-ending injury last November. Additionally, veteran power forward Pau Gasol and rookie sharpshooter Doug McDermott will make their Chicago debuts.

The preseason matchup tips off at 8 p.m. ET and can be seen on Comcast Sports Net Chicago. Bleacher Report will provide scoring updates and in-game analysis. Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

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NBA Media Day 2014: Live Updates, Photos, Highlights from Monday’s Events

After the Brooklyn Nets, Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, Sacramento Kings and San Antonio Spurs were introduced to the media Friday, the NBA‘s other 25 franchises will kick off their preseasons Monday. 

Things get started at 10:30 a.m. ET with the Charlotte Hornets, followed by the Indiana Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies, Orlando Magic, Philadelphia 76ers, Portland Trail Blazers and Washington Wizards at 11:00 a.m. ET.

A complete list of start times can be found here

Keep it locked on Bleacher Report throughout the day for highlights, photos and more from the festivities across the Association as training camps get underway. 

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Spurs sticking to ‘live in the moment’ philosophy (Yahoo Sports)

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Gregg Popovich has a ”live in the moment” philosophy.

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