Around the NBA

ROCKETS: Unveiled a bronze monument honoring center Hakeem Olajuwon before Friday's game against Phoenix.

Olajuwon, who retired after the 2001-02 season as the NBA's all-time shot blocker (3,830), led the Rockets to their only two championships, in 1994 and 1995. Olajuwon was selected to the Hall of Fame earlier this week.

BUCKS: Have apparently hired Pistons vice president John Hammond as their new GM, and the news came from an unlikely source.

Celtics coach Doc Rivers revealed the secret before Friday night's game against Milwaukee. Told the Bucks hadn't even made it official yet, Rivers said, "It's official. So, let's make it official."

Bucks spokesman Dan Smyczek said the team had nothing to announce.

BULLS: Forward Drew Gooden will miss the remainder of the season because of a lower abdominal strain, interim coach Jim Boylan said.

Gooden missed his seventh game in a row when the Bulls hosted Cleveland on Friday.

SPURS: A long-running marijuana possession case against guard Damon Stoudamire has been dismissed. Stoudamire's lawyer said all charges have been dismissed with prejudice and cannot be re-filed.



Despite losing to the Celtics twice this season by double digits, the Hawks might be thinking upset tonight.

That's because Boston already has shown a propensity to give its three star players (Kevin Garnett , Paul Pierce and Ray Allen ) plenty of rest heading into the playoffs.

Meanwhile, Atlanta needs this game to keep a leg up on the Indiana Pacers in the race for the final playoff spot in the East. Entering Friday, Atlanta led Indiana by two games.

NEXT: vs. Boston Celtics

WHEN: 7 tonight

TV: FSN South

RECORD: 36-42 (played late Friday at New York Knicks)



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