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Scott: Irving, Paul More Mature as Rookies Than Russell

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“I haven’t been the easiest man on him (D’Angelo Russell) in the world,” (Byron) Scott said hours before his Lakers fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers 120-111 at Quicken Loans Arena. “But I always seem to go back to thinking — after I’ve been so hard on him on certain occasions — that he’s 19 years old, and he’s just a kid playing in a man’s world. I know the potential is there. He’s just got to keep working at it. I’m going to stay on him because I think he has a chance to be a very good basketball player.”

Later Wednesday, Scott further critiqued Russell by saying the former Ohio State standout is not as mature as other top-flight rookie point guards Scott coached, such as Kyrie Irving in Cleveland and Chris Paul in New Orleans.

Source: Baxter Holmes of ESPN

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Sources: Bulls Hire Billy Donovan as Head Coach

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The Chicago Bulls have hired former Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Billy Donovan as their new head coach, the team announced Tuesday.

Arturas Karnisovas, the Bulls’ executive vice president of basketball operations, aggressively pursued Donovan after the coach left the Oklahoma City Thunder, sources said, selling Donovan on a partnership and vision for a talented young roster and a chance to lead one of the league’s anchor franchises.

In an official statement, Donovan thanked the team’s ownership “for the opportunity to coach the Chicago Bulls” and said he is looking forward to working with Karnisovas.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN

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Report: Giannis Antetokounmpo Named NBA Most Valuable Player

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Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo has been named the 2019-20 Kia NBA Most Valuable Player, the NBA announced today.

This is the second straight Kia NBA Most Valuable Player Award for Antetokounmpo, who becomes the 12th player to earn the honor in consecutive seasons. A native of Greece, Antetokounmpo is the first player from Europe to be selected as the NBA MVP more than once. Antetokounmpo, 25, also joins Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and LeBron James as the only players to win multiple NBA MVP awards by the age of 25.

Source: NBA

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Report: Nick Nurse, Raptors Agree to Extension

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The Toronto Raptors announced Tuesday they have signed head coach Nick Nurse to a multi-year contract extension. Per team policy, financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. This past season, Nurse guided the Raptors to a 53-19 record during the regular season (second best in the NBA) and set a franchise-record with a .736 winning percentage. Toronto also reached the Eastern Conference Semifinals for the fifth straight year.

Source: Toronto Raptors

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