The way the Atlanta Hawks talk about themselves vs. reality.
When Brandon Jennings shoots often and well, the Bucks win. It's almost as simple as that.
Timofey Mozgov on the emotional high that comes from not playing for a month, and then having the game of your life with 20,000 fans chanting your name.
Matt McHale of By the Horns on why the Bulls would really like to beat the Clippers: "The Clips have won nine in a row at home, a streak that includes victories over the Heat, Lakers and Nuggets. The last time the Clippers won 10 straight at home? It was between December 5, 1975 and January 6, 1976. When the franchise was located in Buffalo. And they were called the Braves."
Ron Artest, in a conversation with AOL's Sam Amick, on freedom of expression: "Obviously this world is dangerous, but I think it's important that people learn how to get that communication back. That's where the mental health awareness stuff I've been doing comes into play. It doesn't mean you're crazy. It means coming together and being social. You can't be locked away (psychologically). You should be able to express yourself however you want to express yourself -- your feelings, your emotions. People get locked in and it just causes so much stress. You should try and live in a stress-free environment. That's how I live. That's how I move. Everything I'm doing, for the most part, is being free. Exactly what America is -- free. I think that's very important." He also says he may play Canadian football during the NBA lockout, if it comes to that.
NBA Playbook's Sebastian Pruiti is in breakdown heaven, talking about how Doc Rivers gets Ray Allen open: "Not only is this screen the screener, but it is screen the screener who just came off of a screen."
Kyle Weidie of TruthAboutIt charted the Wizards' defense for an entire game, and Nick Young was the big loser, although Andray Blatche is also credited with providing a lot of the excitement for the best night of Jason Smith's young career.
Aaron Brooks, who started the season miffed about his lack of a contract extension, sure seems to be playing for something beyond just wins. Jacob Mustafa of Red94: "The little guy will fight and scrap and claw and shoot and shoot, waiting for his chance. His chance at a real starting job. At the playoffs. His first real grab at that contract. Or just for some damn respect."
Portland Roundball Society's Andrew Tonry on Gregg Popovich, after Aldridge scored 40 in beating the Spurs: "Pop shook my hand," said Aldridge. "He’s never done that before, so I’m taking that as a good thing."
The Timberwolves hired Mike Miller for his shooting but got assists instead. The Heat hired him for his shooting and are getting rebounds.
Lots of talk about All-Star reserves. I'll leave most of the battling to others. However, I'll say this: Among those on the bubble, Kevin Love is the guy who, to me, simply must make it. Rebounding matters.