Five Key Stories: 1/19/20 – 1/25/20

If you missed any of this past week’s biggest headlines from around the NBA, we’ve got you covered with our Week in Review. Here are some of the most noteworthy stories from the last seven days:

This season’s most anticipated NBA debut took place Wednesday in New Orleans as No. 1 pick Zion Williamson played in his first regular season game. Williamson was dominant in the preseason before suffering a meniscus injury that required surgery. He admitted that it was frustrating to be sidelined as his recovery time stretched to three months.

Starters were announced for this year’s All-Star game, which will be played February 16 in Chicago. Fans selected Trae YoungKemba WalkerGiannis AntetokounmpoPascal Siakam and Joel Embiid in the East and James HardenLuka DoncicLeBron JamesKawhi Leonard and Anthony Davis in the West. As the top vote-getters in each conference, James and Antetokounmpo will conduct a mock draft.

The Mavericks picked up some frontcourt help by acquiring Willie Cauley-Stein from the Warriors. Golden State received Utah’s 2020 second-round pick in return. Dallas also traded Isaiah Roby to the Thunder for Justin Patton, who was waived to open a roster spot.

Dallas needed another big man because Dwight Powell was lost for the rest of the season with a ruptured right Achilles tendon. The long recovery time associated with the injury could keep Powell sidelined for most of the 2020/21 season as well.

The Warriors may get Stephen Curry back in their lineup by the beginning of March. Curry, who broke his left hand in late October, has set March 1 as a “target date” for a possible return.

Here are 10 more noteworthy headlines from around the basketball world this week:

  • Curry’s former teammate, Kevin Durant, is also showing improvement in rehabbing his injury. Nets coach Kenny Atkinson said Durant is “progressing” after Achilles surgery, but there are still no plans for him to play this season.
  • Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic was a full participant in practice this week for the first time since suffering compound fractures to his left tibia and fibula last March. Nurkic still doesn’t have a timeline to start playing again.
  • The Bulls lost Lauri Markkanen for four to six weeks after an MRI revealed an early stress reaction of his right pelvis. He will be extension-eligible this summer.
  • Andre Iguodala feels healthy and ready to start playing again after sitting out half the season while the Grizzlies try to find a trade partner. Memphis is seeking a first-round pick in return and has been reluctant to talk about a possible buyout.
  • Despite some skirmishes with management and a few displays of frustration with his younger teammates, Kevin Love said he wouldn’t mind staying with the Cavaliers past next month’s trade deadline.
  • The Kings seem determined to hold onto Bogdan Bogdanovic and take their chances with re-signing him as a restricted free agent this summer.
  • The Knicks may have interest in trading for Hornets guard Malik Monk.
  • The Pistons were granted a $9.258MM disabled player exception after Blake Griffin‘s injury. Detroit isn’t expected to sign anyone, but the DPE could be useful on the trade market.
  • The Magic received a $4.629MM DPE for Al-Farouq Aminu‘s injury. Orlando has room under the tax line and may take advantage of the exception before the March 10 deadline.
  • NFL star Larry Fitzgerald purchased an undisclosed share of the Suns. He and managing partner Robert Sarver are long-time friends.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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