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Phoenix Suns
vs
Houston Rockets
Today's Featured Sports Pick

Game Date:
04/07/2016
8:05pm EST

Lines:
Phoenix +12.5
Houston -12.5

Total:
Over 212.5 (-109)
Under 212.5 (-101)

Community Picks: Phoenix Suns 29% vs Houston Rockets 71%

Phoenix Suns and Houston Rockets Thread

Team Tweets & News Articles
Phoenix Suns
The Houston Rockets suffered a blow to their playoff hopes but all is not lost. Houston (38-40) fell 88-86 at Dallas on Wednesday, falling two games behind the seventh-place Mavericks and one behind eighth-place Utah in the Western Conference playoff race. James Harden scored 26 and Dwight Howard had 14 and 16 rebounds for his 37th double-double. Continue to Article
April 07, 2016 1:56:am EST
Houston Rockets
The Houston Rockets suffered a blow to their playoff hopes but all is not lost. Houston (38-40) fell 88-86 at Dallas on Wednesday, falling two games behind the seventh-place Mavericks and one behind eighth-place Utah in the Western Conference playoff race. James Harden scored 26 and Dwight Howard had 14 and 16 rebounds for his 37th double-double. Continue to Article
April 07, 2016 1:56:am EST
Houston Rockets
DALLAS (AP) -- J.J. Barea scored 27 points and the Dallas Mavericks kept a slim cushion over Utah and Houston in the race for the last two Western Conference playoff spots with an 88-86 victory over the Rockets on Wednesday night. Continue to Article
April 07, 2016 12:27:am EST
Houston Rockets
Sam Hinkie has stepped down as the Philadelphia 76ers' general manager and president of basketball operations, nearly three years after taking the reins of the organization and embarking on an unprecedented campaign of rebuilding through the NBA draft lottery that, thus far, has produced only one of the worst on-court runs in league history. Under Hinkie's tenure, the 76ers have amassed an NBA-worst record of 47-195 since the 2013-14 season, winning fewer than 20 games in each of his three years on the job. Two seasons ago, the 76ers tied an NBA record for consecutive losses at 26 in a row. This season, the 76ers tied an NBA record for consecutive losses to start a campaign, opening up 0-18. This year's club currently stands at 10-68, with a Tuesday win ensuring that they won't share the 1972-73 Sixers' mark for the worst single-season record in NBA history at 9-73. That surely came as welcome news for Hinkie, who recently told ESPN.com's Zach Lowe  (as transcribed by  Liberty Ballers ) that concerns over setting a new NBA record for losing had taken a significant physical toll on him: Do you care about 9-73? Hinkie: "For sure. I lost 20 pounds from November to January." Lowe: "Did you really? From stress?" Hinkie: "Yes. It's not close. This is serious for our fans, our staff, our players, you want to perform, you want to meet expectations and you want to play well. And you want to deliver and tamp down all the noise that comes with a record or a streak or those kinds of things, because they're not productive to some larger mission." All the losing, and the annual lottery trips that came with it, were part of what has come to be defined (and derided) as "The Process" — an overarching approach to roster-building in which Hinkie prepared the 76ers to lose as many games as possible in an attempt to snag high-upside, cost-controlled young talent at the top of the draft. He favored stockpiling second-round picks and trying to entice them to sign three- and four-year deals at or near the league minimum salary, with the latter seasons unguaranteed, in hopes of finding the next Chandler Parsons. He also liked continually churning through undrafted free agents, D-League players and international prospects, taking as many low-cost shots at finding future contributors as he could. By employing almost exclusively young, inexpensive and inexperienced players, the 76ers maintained one of the league's lowest team salaries. That allowed them to have plenty of cap space to serve as a facilitator in other teams' deals — we'll take on some salary you don't want to carry, so long as you pay us off in future draft considerations — without seriously bolstering the existing roster and endangering the likelihood of losing enough to get the highest possible odds of landing the No. 1 pick in the draft, thus finding the sort of transformational superstar that teams must land to compete for championships. Alas, the 76ers never picked first in Hinkie's tenure. Eventually, all that losing — and the out-in-the-open nature of the whole operation, undertaken without any concern for how it might look, which triggered the great "tanking" panic of recent years — wore thin with the NBA's other 29 owners. They tried (and failed ) to institute lottery reform in the wake of the Sixers' sink to the bottom, and reportedly lobbied NBA Commissioner Adam Silver to "step in with regard to the direction" of the franchise. Last December, Sixers managing general partner Josh Harris heeded the call, adding NBA lifer Jerry Colangelo — Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer, longtime former Phoenix Suns executive and owner, and the chairman of USA Basketball — to Philly's front office as "special advisor to the managing general partner and chairman of basketball operations." Colangelo's arrival was widely seen as a move to usurp Hinkie's authority as the franchise's top basketball decision-maker, introducing uncertainty into both the status of Hinkie's "Process" and his position in Philadelphia's hierarchy. This week, it seems, Hinkie came to regard that position as uncertain enough to step down, communicating his feelings in a 13-page letter (yep) of resignation to the Sixers' ownership group, obtained by ESPN.com's Marc Stein : In a 13-page letter to members of the Sixers' ownership group, obtained by ESPN.com, Hinkie wrote: "There has been much criticism of our approach. There will be more. A competitive league like the NBA necessitates a zig while our competitors comfortably zag. We often chose not to defend ourselves against much of the criticism, largely in an effort to stay true to the ideal of having the longest view in the room. "... Given all the changes to our organization, I no longer have the confidence that I can make good decisions on behalf of investors in the Sixers — you. So I should step down. And I have." And in case you were wondering whether the 13-page letter was, um, detailed, here's this: The list of non-basketball people that Sam Hinkie cites/quotes in his 13-page resignation letter obtained by ESPN: pic.twitter.com/QIwF5C7nb3 — Tom Haberstroh (@tomhaberstroh) April 7, 2016 OK, then. "While we are disappointed in Sam's decision, we would like to sincerely thank him for his contributions over the past three seasons." Harris said in a statement . "There is no question that Sam's work has put us in a very strong position to take advantage of numerous opportunities for an exciting future." Bryan Colangelo, former two-time Executive of the Year and son of 76ers chairman Jerry Colangelo, will take over as the Sixers' general manager, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical . Hinkie spent seven years with the Houston Rockets, during which he became the youngest team vice president in NBA history, one of the league's most expert managers of the salary cap and navigators of the collective bargaining agreement, and the chief lieutenant of general manager Daryl Morey, helping popularize the use of advanced analytics in basketball decision-making. He joined the 76ers in May of 2013 , with Philadelphia coming off a disappointing 34-48 campaign, capping a decade in which they won between 33 and 43 games in nine of 10 seasons and never advanced beyond the second round of the playoffs. The Sixers had taken a big swing for the fences, taking part in a four-team deal that sent Dwight Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers, Andre Iguodala to the Denver Nuggets, multiple picks and young players to the Orlando Magic and Andrew Bynum to Philadelphia. That didn't work out so hot for Philly. A new direction was needed. The "private equity princes" who had purchased the Sixers in 2011 for $280 million were looking for a different and better path forward, one that would help them escape the treadmill of mediocrity and move into a future in which the franchise could compete for its first championship since 1983. Hinkie, a product of the Stanford Graduate School of Business and Bain Capital fluent in their language, had just come off helping construct one of the league's longest-term plans to net a star — the Rockets' years-long, transaction-filled collection of the assets necessary to entice the Oklahoma City Thunder into a deal for James Harden, a Sixth Man of the Year who yearned for the opportunity to become a superstar and the maximum-salary paycheck to match. Given the keys to Philly's operation, Hinkie set about duplicating that success by seeking one of the league's rarest and most valuable commodities: a bona fide superstar on a rookie contract. "I think sort of the big message was ... The crops have been eaten," Hinkie told Lowe . "The future ability to nourish yourself was impaired, and so you're a long way away, and how do you do that?" Continue to Article
April 06, 2016 8:20:pm EST
Houston Rockets
The Spurs won again during their best regular season ever, just as Tim Duncan has done 1,000 times in his career. Kawhi Leonard made the go-ahead jumper with 4.9 seconds left and scored 18 points as the Spurs beat the Utah Jazz 88-86 on Tuesday night, giving Duncan a milestone victory. Rodney Hood missed the potential winning 3-pointer at the buzzer as Utah fell a half-game behind Dallas for seventh place in the Western Conference. Continue to Article
April 06, 2016 9:12:am EST
 
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