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Spoelstra, McHale Coaches of the Month

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The Miami Heat’s Erik Spoelstra and the Houston Rockets’ Kevin McHale today were named the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Coaches of the Month, respectively, for games played in February.

Spoelstra led the Heat to an NBA-best 9-1 (.900) record in February.  The Heat posted a 6-1 mark away from AmericanAirlines Arena, and held opponents under 100 points in seven-of-10 contests.  Miami came out of the All-Star break by sweeping a two-game road trip with wins over the Dallas Mavericks on Feb. 18, and the Oklahoma City Thunder on Feb. 20.  Spoelstra’s club won six straight games to close the month.

McHale guided the Rockets to an 8-2 record in February, and the highest winning percentage (.800) in the Western Conference.  The Rockets opened the month with six consecutive wins, and their average margin of victory in those games was 13.2 points. Houston, which averaged 111.9 points on the month, topped the century mark in each of its eight wins.

Other nominees for Coach of the Month were Brooklyn’s Jason Kidd, Charlotte’s Steve Clifford, Chicago’s Tom Thibodeau, Dallas’ Rick Carlisle, Los Angeles Clippers’ Doc Rivers, San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich and Washington’s Randy Wittman.

via NBA Press Releases

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Bulls Suspend Bobby Portis 8 Games

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The Chicago Bulls have suspended forward Bobby Portis for eight games following his role in a practice altercation that left teammate Nikola Mirotic in the hospital, the team announced Wednesday. Portis will be eligible to return for a Nov. 7 game against Toronto, and will be eligible to practice during his extension.

Source: Chicago Bulls

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Joel Embiid Not Happy With Early Minutes Restriction

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The Philadelphia 76ers will be cautious with Joel Embiid early on this season, and the star center isn’t thrilled with that plan.

Sixers coach Brett Brown, when asked how much Embiid would play in Wednesday’s season opener against the Wizards, told reporters that he didn’t have a set number of minutes in mind before acknowledging “somewhere like in the teens.” “That’s f—ing bulls—. I wish I was playing more minutes,” Embiid told reporters on Tuesday. “I think I’m ready. I think I’m ready for more than whatever number they have. I don’t know. I wish I was playing more, but we’re going to see how that goes.”

Source: ESPN

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Report: Bulls’ Mirotic, Portis Involved in Serious Practice Altercation

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Chicago Bulls forwards Nikola Mirotic and Bobby Portis engaged in a physical altercation in practice Tuesday that resulted in Mirotic being hospitalized and sidelined indefinitely, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

Mirotic was taken to the hospital Tuesday after their shoving altercation during practice ended with an alleged cheap shot from Portis to Mirotic’s face, league sources told The Vertical.

Source: Shams Charania of The Vertical

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