NBA notebook: Heat's James wins 4th MVP award
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• LeBron James was the overwhelming choice as the MVP. The Miami Heat star took 120 of 121 first-place votes in this year's balloting, giving him the award for the fourth time. Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant finished second, and the New York Knicks' Carmelo Anthony — who garnered the other first-place vote —was third. James averaged 26.8 points, 8.0 rebounds and 7.3 assists this season, leading Miami to a league-best 66-16 record while shooting a career-high 56 percent. Only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (six), Michael Jordan (five), Bill Russell (five) and Wilt Chamberlain (four) have as many MVP awards. James was the only player in the NBA to lead his team in scoring, rebounding and assists per game this season, and had a record six straight games of scoring at least 30 points while shooting at least 60 percent.
• After spending $350 million to upgrade their roster last summer, the Nets will start looking for a coach. The Nets announced that P.J. Carlesimo wouldn't return, hours after they were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs. Carlesimo helped the Nets finish 49-33 after replacing the fired Avery Johnson in December, earning the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference. But they spotted the Bulls a 17-point halftime lead and lost, 99-93, on Saturday night in Game 7.
• Bulls forward Luol Deng left Rush University Medical Center in Chicago late Saturday afternoon after undergoing a procedure called a “blood patch” to stop spinal fluid leakage, sources familiar with the situation said. Deng had experienced complications from a spinal tap administered Wednesday in a test for viral meningitis, which proved negative. According to two people who spoke to Deng, he was alarmed by the side effects from the spinal tap, including headaches, disorientation and an unsteady gait.
— Wire reports
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