Are you ready to get Pabloco? There’s a new unsung backup point guard in New York that’s waiting to take the world by storm, and his name is Pablo Prigioni. The 35-year-old rookie from Argentina — currently below Ray Felton and Jason Kidd on the depth chart — dropped 11 assists in the Knicks’ 97-95 overtime win against the Brooklyn Nets last night, including dimes to Steve Novak on a pair of huge three-pointers in the extra session. (And if you recall, Linsanity was born in a Knicks game against Deron Williams and the Nets.) Novak was the one teammate of Jeremy Lin‘s whose stock skyrocketed the most during Linsanity, but when he didn’t follow Lin to Houston, he seemed destined to fade into oblivion as the kid who got the worst out of the Lin/Knicks divorce. But last night he was right there in crunch time, lighting it up like it was February 2012 all over again … Tyson Chandler injured his knee less than a minute into the game. With Amar’e Stoudemire (knee) already expected to miss a couple of weeks, and with Marcus Camby (calf) and Rasheed Wallace (old) sidelined, New York’s star-studded frontcourt seems more fragile than ever. “It’s frustrating, because like I say I felt great before the game,” Chandler told reporters afterward. “I was excited, team’s looking good and we were up for this game to try to set the tempo moving into the first game of the year. And I mean I look at the stat sheet, I played 44 seconds, so it’s just disappointing to happen at all.” At least Carmelo made it through the evening, finishing with 15 points and nine boards … Another backup point guard stole the show Wednesday when the Clippers beat the Lakers. Chris Paul sat this one out (as did Kobe and Dwight Howard), allowing regular reserve Eric Bledsoe to go nuts, barely missing a triple-double with 22 points, 11 assists and nine steals. We know, we know, it’s just preseason, but is it possible Steve Nash is a defensive downgrade from Derek Fisher? Bledsoe always plays like he was just released from solitary confinement and has a month’s worth of energy to burn, but to see him keep that frenetic pace up for 40-plus minutes last night was kind of amazing … Blake Griffin continues to own Pau Gasol on the highlight reel. This time it was Blake (15 pts, 6 rebs) driving in from the left side, taking off and doing a 360 in mid-air while taking a bump from Pau (17 pts, 8 rebs), then dropping in a short jumper. Blake turned in his more conventional poster dunk off a pick-and-roll in the second half, but Pau decided to stay where he was and let Robert Sacre take the brunt of that one … Watching the Orlando Magic this season is gonna be like watching the Baltimore Ravens play 82 games without Ray Lewis, only we know their superstar ain’t coming back. Orlando’s front line got beasted last night by the Grizzlies: Marc Gasol had 18 points and 13 rebounds, Zach Randolph had 18 points and Marreese Speights chipped in 11 points and eight boards off the bench. And when Orlando did double-team the post, it opened things up for the Grizzlies’ shooters, who connected on 62 percent of their three-point attempts. So ironically enough, the best way to beat the Magic now is to play basically the same style the Magic played during the Dwight and Stan Van Gundy era … Keep reading to hear about Anthony Davis’ big night …
Thanks to the master salesman that is John Calipari, we’re going to start seeing University of Kentucky reunions at least once a week in the NBA. Last night it was Anthony Davis and Terrence Jones sharing the court as the Rockets beat the Hornets. Jones had 15 points and nine boards in the win, while Davis had 13 points, eight boards and three blocks in the loss … Davis beat the first-quarter buzzer by reaching over one guy to rebound a teammate’s missed free throw, then banking in a fadeaway all in one motion. Only a handful of players in the league have the length, leaping ability, agility and instincts to even do that … Lin’s shooting slump continued, as he went 1-for-8 and had six turnovers. But the one shot he made was a crazy circus layup … Samuel L. Jackson was in the New Orleans crowd, and there were so few people at the game that you could hear Sam’s individual conversations through the TV. Actually, you probably could’ve heard Sam talking even if it had been a sold-out playoff game. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Sam at a Hornets game. At some point they need to get him in Nick Fury mode from the Iron Man movies to voiceover the player intros … The night after his disaster of an experience as the Thunder’s go-to guy, James Harden was in his comfort zone again with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook back in action against the Mavs. After shooting 2-for-17 on Tuesday when the Bulls’ defense was focused on him, Harden managed 16 points (6-15 FG) and five assists off the bench against Dallas … And no disrespect to Mavs rookie Jae Crowder, probably the toughest guy on last year’s tough-as-nails Marquette team, but you know it’s preseason (and you know Dallas is racked by injuries) when Crowder is the team’s go-to guy. Crowder had 21 points on 10-of-19 shooting, while Dirk Nowitzki, Vince Carter, Shawn Marion and Chris Kaman all sat out … Other stat lines from Wednesday: Chase Budinger scored 21 and Derrick Williams scored 18 points to lead Minnesota over Detroit; and Martell Webster (thankfully rocking a normal haircut) dropped 23 points in Washington’s win over Miami that was played in Kansas City for some reason … Tracy McGrady arrived in China flocked by fans and media. T-Mac’s season with the Qingdao Double Star Eagles starts in late November, and he’ll wear No. 9 on his jersey. He says his goal is winning a championship. We just want him to finally get past the first round … We’re out like Justin Verlander.
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