Brian Windhorst tweets a link to a photo of the Heat's bus in Salt Lake City. Amazing. Two looks at how the Jazz beat the Heat last time they played. In video highlights, and Popcorn Machine's telling gameflow. In those highlights, you can see the play Kevin Arnovitz and Tom Haberstroh are talking about on Heat Index: "For Chris Bosh, there's an especially incriminating defensive possession at the 8:50 mark of the first quarter of the Heat's first meeting with the Jazz last month in Miami. Early in the possession, Paul Millsap holds the ball in the high post, passes it back up top, then makes a sharp cut to the basket. Bosh is well-positioned between Millsap and the hoop to defend this dive, but gets bumped out of the lane as Millsap gobbles up the space, catches the ball on the move and finishes with an uncontested layup. It's a perfectly legal move but Bosh puts up precious little resistance, and was generally manhandled by Millsap for the entire game."
Watching Jason Kidd drain a clutch 3 last night, I couldn't help but wonder: What if had figured out a decade ago how to shoot like that? All those defenders who sagged off him to clog things up for his teammates for all those years, and he made the Finals twice anyway. If he had been nailing 3s all along, he'd have had more points for himself, an easier time creating buckets for running mates, and in all likelihood a ring or two.
Jalen Rose is part of a fascinating discussion about whether or not college athletes should be paid. He makes a great point: Athletes can get straight A's and get kicked off the team because the coach changes the style of play. In other words, it's already not about giving students a way to compete. It's about luring elite athletes to campus.
Antoine Walker, attempting a comeback, says he wants to "leave the game on my own merit." Didn't he already to that once?
Walt Frazier, to SLAM's Kyle Stack, on the NBA's dress code: "It was long overdue, man."
The NBA was already covering a decent chunk of the Hornets' losses, so ownership wasn't such a big leap. A commenter on an accounting blog called "Going Concern" questions whether the Hornets can be considered a going concern at all.
Dorell Wright in a Santa hat, asking for all your toys.
Portland has been near the top in NBA attendance for years, but that trend appears to be reversing itself. Last night was billed as a sellout, but there were all kinds of empty seats even in the lower bowl last night, for a game against the Suns who kicked Portland from the playoffs last year, have had historic playoff battles, and play some of the most exciting basketball in the NBA.
Clarkpojo of SLCDunk: "I went to New York City last week. Do celebrities in the city walk around just like any other person would? They would have to. It's pointless to drive in Manhattan. While I was thinking this, I saw three really tall guys walking towards me on 59th street. Those guys are tall. Really tall. As I bumped into one of them, I realized it was Kevin Garnett. Guess that answers that question. But if you are reading my inner thoughts, KG, I was the guy who hit your hip with his shoulder on 59th and Lexington. I just wanted to say that I'm sorry. Didn't mean anything by it."
Ethan Sherwood Strauss evidently is displeased with the amount of hate mail he gets, because he has taken it upon himself to speak for LeBron James' inner-most thoughts at HoopSpeak, and this is what it had to say: "I’m too tired to read every column by a midlife crisis with a laptop. Perhaps that speaks to my lack of effort? Media before me, please chasten LeBron James well. That is what you do, right? You take to the airwaves and Internet, in a grand collective effort to school marm me proper. And thank GOD for that, really. Because while clawing my way out of poverty, I always prayed for the day when comfortable, pot-bellied slobs could regale me with advice on how to be more Jordanish. Go ahead, write that column…tell me what to do…pick apart these words you’re hearing right now. Like a psycho, address it to my person–act like I’m reading. Pretend your journalism platform gives you a direct line–like I’m the Pope and you’re God. Do that, but know: I don’t listen to this stuff because none of you matter. You could all die tomorrow and your newspapers would probably cheer at the savings. Well, that’s if they still exist. More importantly, none of you know what it’s like. You just jealously resent my ability to indulge in what it is. Even less care is reserved for the Cleveland fans. I keep telling these idiots to enjoy what we had and they take it as a license for permanent misery. Sorry I failed as actor in your psychodrama, Steve from Shaker Heights. Sorry your marriage fell apart, I’m sure my continued proximity would have made you whole again. My bad on not winning a shiny ring while rubbing Drew Carey’s belly."
Nene will get in your shirt. Literally.
Watch this video for one minute, agree with me that the Wizards have cornered the market on delightful NBA silliness.
Help me out, if you can: Do players foul out less than they used to? Seems like it used to happen all the time. Now it seems so rare. I can't tell if that's really a trend, or just an artifact of a childhood watching Steve Johnson, king of six fouls.
Patty Mills brought Rudy Fernandez out of a funk by making fun of his poor eyesight.
An assessment of labor talks: It's not about what the players propose, it's about how much pain they're willing to endure.
Don't bring the ball down low where the little guys can swipe it, big man.