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Nick Friedell ESPN Staff Writer 

Robin Lopez, on if he's ever had anybody fling his shoe during a game like Celtics swingman Jae Crowder did in Game 4: "Yeah, multiple times," Lopez said. "That's when you do when somebody has a loose shoe, you fling the shoe. That's standard NBA protocol."

Nick Friedell ESPN Staff Writer 

Hoiberg noted before Monday's practice that the reason he didn't give Denzel Valentine any minutes in Game 4 is because he didn't trust Valentine's defense on Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas: "That's what it was about last night," Hoiberg said. "With Rajon going out, obviously he's our point guard so we need somebody who can go out there and compete and try to slow down Isaiah Thomas a little bit as well as he can, which obviously is a very difficult task. We thought Isaiah was as good option with that."

Nick Friedell ESPN Staff Writer 

Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg says he has not heard from the league office in regard to his comments about Isaiah Thomas, and how he feels the Celtics guard is carrying the ball. Hoiberg was asked before Monday's practice if he thought twice about calling out Thomas' play after the emotional week the Celtics guard has been dealing with: "I'm a huge Isaiah Thomas fan," Hoiberg said. "He's as big a competitor as we have in our league. Obviously, he's as tough a guy to guard as we have in our league. I think the world of the kid, especially what he's going through now, how he's fought through that and like I said last night, he's a warrior to go out there and do what he's done so far in this series. He's again, a guy I think a lot of people root for because of the chip on his shoulder he plays with. He was the last pick in the draft and now he's a guy you'd argue could be in the MVP race. So I'm a huge fan of him. I said what I said and I'm done talking about it."

ESPN Stats and Information  

On Tuesday, the Spurs will play their 100th game in the First Round under Gregg Popovich. Only once have they lost 3 or more consecutive games in the First Round (last 3 of 2009 and Game 1 in 2010 - all 4 of those games were vs Mavericks).

Ian Begley ESPN Staff Writer 

Derrick Rose discussed his free agency while attending the Bulls playoff game in Chicago on Sunday. "I'm going into it with an open mind and will listen to everyone," Rose said, via the Chicago Tribune. "Last season sucked losing. But it was a great experience. I loved the guys that I played with and I loved the coaching staff. And who wouldn't like playing in New York? It was great." Rose underwent surgery in April to repair a meniscus injury and expects to be healthy enough to return to the court later this month. The Knicks have expressed interest in re-signing Rose this summer.

Calvin Watkins ESPN Staff Writer 

Rockets center Clint Capela struggled in 17 minutes on Sunday. He's averaged just 4.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in the last two games. The physical nature of the series with the Thunder has been too much for him, which has given Nene more playing time. Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni said this has been a learning experience for Capela.

Russillo @ryenarussillo

So you have Russ, LeBron and Harden all with ads that take on how much they are doubted. Is that accurate or focusing on a minority opinion?

Calvin Watkins ESPN Staff Writer 

Rockets guard James Harden rolled his ankle in Game 3 of the series against the Thunder. Harden said it's been difficult to get a burst on drives to the basket since he hurt the ankle. "Got some treatment and I'll be ready to go tomorrow," Harden said before Monday's practice. "It's the playoffs, everybody is banged up so you just got to find a way to fight through it and find a way to help your teammates win games. For me, it's not necessarily scoring, I don't have to score a certain amount of points as long as I'm making the right plays and guys are getting shots everybody is in a good rhythm that's all that matters."

Calvin Watkins ESPN Staff Writer 

After another lackluster first quarter, the Houston Rockets are still searching for answers against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Will a lineup change be the most effective way to improve the first quarter starts? It seems stunning to even talk about it considering the Rockets lead the series 3-1. But Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni can see keeping the lineup the same. "Yeah, I think so," he said Monday. "We'll see how it goes, the mindset is don't panic, yet. We were one shot away (James Harden miss) from a sweep and probably two shots away from being down 1-3, it depends on how you want to look at it."

Ethan Sherwood Strauss ESPN Staff Writer 

Kevin Durant participated in Warriors shootaround this morning and Steve Kerr was present

espnW @espnW

Russell Westbrook claps back, Serena shares baby joy & a Hall of Famer's unimpressed by Myles Garrett. 20 Questions: es.pn/2oF3Vna

Royce Young ESPN Staff Writer 

Russell Westbrook didn't notice some of the Rockets appearing to mock Andre Roberson as he missed fourth quarter free throws, but has a guess as to which ones it was.

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Royce Young ESPN Staff Writer 

Westbrook on the going-over-the-screen foul thing, a move the Rockets are excellent at (and something Westbrook himself has deployed at times this season), and if he'd like to see a rule change on it.

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Chris Haynes ESPN Staff Writer 

Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant is still listed as questionable for tonight's Game 4 matchup against the Portland Trail Blazers.

Calvin Watkins ESPN Staff Writer 

Nene said he received some text messages from close friends after tying the NBA mark for field goals made without a miss at 12.

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Kevin Pelton ESPN Staff Writer 

At the Portland Trail Blazers' shootaround Monday, guard Damian Lillard described the team's mindset down 3-0 in the series. "You've got to have some pride," Lillard said. "Nobody's ever done it before but from here we've got to do one game at a time. This game is on our home floor, so we've got to win the game, give ourselves the opportunity to get back on that plane. Get into a Game 5, go steal one and come back here and make something out of it. You've got to have some pride. We've been in position to win two of these three games. We've just got to go get one."

Calvin Watkins ESPN Staff Writer 

Rockets CEO Tad Brown said the organization will bring in former player Vernon "Mad Max" Maxwell to pump up the crowd prior to Game 5 against the Thunder.

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