Hornets’ Stojakovic, Daniels out
NEW ORLEANS — Peja Stojakovic sat out his third straight game with back soreness on Tuesday night when the New Orleans Hornets hosted the Los Angeles Lakers. Backup point guard Antonio Daniels, who twisted his knee during the Hornets’ previous game on Saturday, also missed the game.
Hornets coach Byron Scott said Daniels’ swelling has gone down and characterized his status as day-to-day.
Jazz without Okur, Millsap hurt
MILWAUKEE — The short-handed Utah Jazz played without center Mehmet Okur on Tuesday night, then got a major scare when forward Paul Millsap injured his left knee early in the first quarter against the Bucks. Okur, who is averaging 16.6 points and 8.2 rebounds, had back spasms. He had tallied at least 23 points and nine rebounds in each of his last three contests. Okur also missed a game Nov. 17 with back spasms. Millsap was hurt after leaping to block a layup attempt by Michael Redd. He landed awkwardly and stayed on the ground for several minutes before being helped to the locker room, putting no pressure on his left leg. Millsap returned to the bench late in the second quarter with his left knee in a brace. X-rays on the knee were negative.
Rockets’ Alston returns from injury
CLEVELAND — Houston Rockets guard Rafer Alston returned to the starting lineup Tuesday night against Cleveland after missing four games with a strained left hamstring. The Rockets won all four games without Alston, who is averaging 11.7 points and a team-high 5.2 assists.
Warriors’ Crawford out
MIAMI — Jamal Crawford missed the Warriors’ game in Miami on Tuesday night with a strained left groin, adding to the team’s significant injury woes. Golden State has already been without Monta Ellis (ankle), Corey Maggette (hamstring) and Stephen Jackson (left hand). Crawford strained the hamstring Monday in Orlando, but played nonetheless in the Warriors’ loss to the Magic. He was still experiencing pain on Tuesday, prompting the decision to sit out.