Nets rookie Caris LeVert participated in his first practice today, writes Cory Wright of NBA.com. LeVert continues to rehab from foot surgery that has kept him off the court since February 13th. Coach Kenny Atkinson plans to bring LeVert along slowly to make sure the foot doesn’t give him any more trouble. LeVert, who has spent his time doing conditioning work and learning the team’s offense, said it felt good to be back on the court. “It’s been a long time since I’ve practiced full go and competed in live drills,” he said, “so it was a great experience for me.”
There’s more news tonight out of New York:
- Marshall Plumlee‘s NBA debut was memorable even before Sunday’s game started, relays Al Iannazzone of Newsday. Plumlee was preparing to play for the Knicks‘ D-League affiliate in Westchester when he was notified that Joakim Noah was sick and the NBA club needed him. Plumlee took a train to Grand Central Station, hailed a cab and paid the driver to run a red light, then got stuck in traffic and sprinted the final few blocks to Madison Square Garden. He got there during the first quarter and wound up playing more than five minutes. “It was crazy,” he said. “I feel like I could write a book about it. Just imagine being woken up, saying like, ‘Hey, we need you to guard Dwight Howard.’”
- Knicks players insist the team meeting they had Saturday wasn’t a revolt against president Phil Jackson or coach Jeff Hornacek, according to Fred Kerber of The New York Post. Some players have complained that Jackson’s triangle offense is outdated and it results in the team not practicing against pick-and-rolls. However, the meeting was described as a productive exchange of ideas about the team’s slow start. Jackson reportedly attended but did not speak. “It was a positive meeting,” said Courtney Lee, one of 10 new players on the Knicks’ roster. “Just everybody voicing their opinion and trying to get on the same page with the coaches and Phil. Guys left in good spirits, and it carried over into the game.”
- Jackson’s “posse” controversy from last week left him appearing out of touch, contends Harvey Araton of The New York Times. Jackson was discussing the many favors the Heat were willing to do for LeBron James, but Araton points out that Jackson has received similar treatment, as did the stars he coached, Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant.