Basketball - National Basketball Association roundup

Dec 23 (The Sports Xchange) - Los Angeles Lakers center Pau Gasol is back in the lineup for Monday night's game at the Phoenix Suns, according to ESPN.

Gasol, who missed one game because of a lingering respiratory issue, will start next to power forward Shawnee Williams with Jordan Hill moving back to the bench.

Spain's Gasol is averaging 15 points and 9.4 rebounds per game this season.

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Charlotte Bobcats forward Jeffery Taylor will be sidelined the rest of the season after having surgery on Monday to repair a ruptured Achilles tendon, the team announced.

Taylor suffered the injury on Friday, and recovery time is typically six to nine months.

The 24-year-old forward played in 26 games this season, including eight starts, and averaged 8.0 points and 2.3 rebounds.

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Guard Jeremy Lin will be back in the Houston Rockets' starting lineup for Monday's game against Dallas, but guard James Harden was expected to absent with an ankle injury, the Houston Chronicle reported.

Lin has missed the past four games because of back spasms. He is averaging 14.3 points and 4.2 assists this season.

Harden has been playing through an ankle problem recently, but decided to take Monday's game off to help recover. He is averaging 23.9 points this season, but had just 12 against the Indiana Pacers on Friday.

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Los Angeles Clippers forward Matt Barnes was fined $25,000 by the NBA for failing to leave the court in a timely manner after being ejected from a game, the league announced Monday.

The incident occurred with 56.8 seconds left in the third quarter of the Clippers' overtime victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday.

Barnes was called for a Flagrant Foul 2 on Kevin Love at the time, but it was later downgraded to a Flagrant Foul 1 upon league office review.

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The NBA is considering a new system for determining its yearly draft order to prevent teams from tanking games to increase their chances of landing the number one pick.

A proposal to use a system called The Wheel is being looked at, according to the sports website

In an alternative to the current lottery system, The Wheel would set the draft order 30 years in advance using a specific numbering system designed to give all teams an equal chance of getting the best prospects.

All teams would draft in all 30 slots over a 30-year period with every team getting a top-12 pick at least once every four years, and a top-five pick once every six years.

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