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Anthony, Durant Named NBA Players of Month

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The New York Knicks’ Carmelo Anthony and the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Kevin Durant were today named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month, respectively, for games played in January.

Anthony led the Eastern Conference in scoring (28.7 ppg), ranked ninth in rebounding (9.0 rpg) and third in minutes (37.7 mpg) as he led the Knicks to a 10-6 (.625) record, which included four straight wins to close the month.  He ranked sixth in the league with a .494 shooting percentage from distance, and made 44 made three-point field goals.  Anthony recorded five point-rebound double-doubles, and topped the 25-point mark in 12-of-16 games.  He set a Knicks franchise record, Madison Square Garden single-game record, and now owns the 2013-14 single-game high thanks to his 62-point outburst on Jan. 24, during a 125-96 win over the Charlotte Bobcats.

Durant, who captured his third consecutive Kia NBA Western Conference Player of the Month award, led the NBA in scoring (35.9 ppg), ranked fifth in the conference in minutes (38.3 mpg), tied for eighth in the conference in steals (1.63 spg) and 10th in the conference in field goal percentage (.549) as he helped the Thunder to a 13-4 (.765) record in January.  Durant appeared in 16 of Oklahoma City’s 17 games, and scored 20 or more points each time, 30 or more points 13 times, 40 or more points five times, and 50-plus one time – on Jan. 17, when he set a career high with 54 during a 127-121 win over the Golden State Warriors.

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Sources: Hawks Fire Lloyd Pierce, Nate McMillan to Serve as Interim Head Coach

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Atlanta has dismissed Lloyd Pierce as coach, sources tell ESPN.

ESPN Sources: Nate McMillan has accepted the interim head coaching job with the Hawks. McMillan has a 667-591 (.530) record in 16 seasons as head coach with Seattle, Portland and Indiana.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

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Sources: Joakim Noah to Retire

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13-year NBA center Joakim Noah — a two-time All-Star and former Defensive Player of the Year winner — is effectively retiring from basketball, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium.

Plan is for the longtime Chicago star to eventually retire as a Bull.

Source: Shams Charania on Twitter

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Sources: Victor Oladipo Turned Down Extension from Rockets

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Houston Rockets guard Victor Oladipo recently turned down a two-year, $45.2 million maximum contract extension, the most the franchise could offer him before the end of the regular season, sources told ESPN.

As expected, Oladipo is pursuing a longer-term deal, sources said, something that the collective bargaining agreement doesn’t allow the Rockets to offer him until the offseason.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN

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