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Kevin Durant Fined $15,000 for Public Criticism of Officiation

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The NBA has fined Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant $15,000 for public criticism of the officiating, the league announced Thursday.

Durant on Tuesday accused official James Williams of targeting him in the second half after the two had a disagreement about a call early in the Warriors’ 123-112 victory over the New York Knicks. But on Wednesday at practice, Durant said:

“I looked at the plays, a couple techs, and I was being an a–h— last night. I was being a jerk.”

The National Basketball Referees Association tweeted Thursday that it had accepted Durant’s apology for accusing an official of targeting him after he was ejected Tuesday night.

Tension between players and officials have been a dominant theme this season, with multiple star players criticizing the manner in which referees have treated them.

Source: ESPN

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Sources: Zhaire Smith Out Indefinitely after Allergic Reaction Complications

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Do not expect to see Zhaire Smith on the basketball court anytime soon, at least not during 2018.

The 76ers are no stranger to rookie injuries, especially ones that keep their rookies sidelined for prolonged amounts of time. The Sixers are also familiar with bizarre injuries and situations that can be categorized as anything but typical. Smith has firmly been added to that list.

On Friday night the Sixers released a medical update on Smith.

“Zhaire Smith is recovering well after receiving additional medical treatment for complications derived from the allergic reaction that initially required a thoracoscopy,” the statement read. “His return to athletic training has yet to be determined and as such, there is no timetable for his return to play.”

According to a team source, the timetable has been pushed into 2019 and even then it’s not certain.

Source: Sarah Todd of The Philadelphia Inquirer

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Report: Timberwolves Trade Jimmy Butler to 76ers

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The Minnesota Timberwolves have reached an agreement to trade disgruntled All-Star forward Jimmy Butler to the Philadelphia 76ers, league sources told ESPN.

The 76ers are trading forwards Robert Covington and Dario Saric, guard Jerryd Bayless, and a 2022 second-round pick for Butler and forward Justin Patton, sources said.

The Sixers and Butler, a four-time All-Star, have every intention of formalizing a long-term agreement this summer, sources said, but nothing is allowed to be negotiated or agreed upon until Butler opts out of the final year of his contract after the season. The Sixers will weigh Butler’s physical condition and how he fits with Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons, but they didn’t give up such significant assets believing that this would be a rental situation.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe of ESPN

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Sources: Timberwolves, Jimmy Butler Agree to ‘scheduled rest’ Plan

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Jimmy Butler is scheduled to play tonight at Sacramento, but league sources say Minnesota will continue to mix in occasional games of “scheduled rest” for Butler as part of a jointly agreed plan coming into the season

Source: Marc Stein on Twitter

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