NBA players give tickets to young people all the time. But I haven't heard a lot of stories of players having the idea and arranging it themselves via e-mail. Classy Kevin Martin.
Kevin Ding of the Orange County Register: "[Andrew] Bynum, however, oozed petulance when asked by a TV reporter late Thursday night if he liked coming off the bench. He slowly rolled his eyes and then said: 'Not at all.'"
When the Sonic move mess was unfolding in Seattle, there was a lot of talk that losing the Sonics would cost local politicians this November. In reality, it hasn't been part of the campaign conversation. The economic downturn has doubtless weakened the whole "you should have spent taxpayer money on a stadium" argument.
I'll tell you two things I have heard in the last few weeks. When we were down in Florida at the Train Like a Pro camp, at one point David Thorpe delivered a little speech about how fantastic Brandan Wright had been when he had seen him play. I am quite sure Thorpe doesn't know Wright, nor have any connection to him, but he really got me excited. And now we see hear Don Nelson making it sound like the young big man has a lot of work to do before he can see significant playing time.
Mike Dunleavy Jr. apparently had a jacket made out of Jack Ramsay's old pants.
On SLAM's website, John Krolik imagines a small ball debate between Mike D'Antoni, Gregg Popovich, and Don Nelson. Good read. Imaginary D'Antoni makes a killer point, too: "Citizens, a time of change is upon us. In last year's playoffs, Carlos Boozer averaged 16 points on 42 percent shooting. Pau Gasol, 17 points. Tim Duncan got 20 points, but shot 45 percent. Not even Kevin Garnett was able to break 50 percent in the playoffs. Meanwhile, Kobe Bryant averaged 30 points on 48 percent shooting, Chris Paul 24 on 50 percent shooting, Tony Parker 22 on 50 percent shooting, Deron Williams 22 on 50 percent shooting. Scoring, and more than that efficient scoring, is increasingly becoming a small man's game, especially in the playoffs, when it really matters and drives to the basket are the best way to combat the increased defensive intensity. Players like Tony Parker, Dwayne Wade, and Monta Ellis-who regrettably injured himself on a moped-are the future."
For some dumb reason, some talk radio hosts suggest that Magic Johnson faked having HIV. Magic Johnson's response was, not surprisingly, entirely classy.
BlogaBull on Derrick Rose's preseason debut: "Derrick Rose is going to be OK at basketball. I see a future in the league for this kid. He missed his first few jumpers (and was a bit more trigger-happy than I thought he'd be) but he showed what he could do early in the game: not only did he initiate a lob to Tyrus (who whiffed, more on that later) but on a subsequent play he was the recipient of a lob. The point guard! Made some mistakes but also created space for shooters with his penetration. Looked for the ball when initiating the possession, and looked to run once he got it. Was not timid in attacking the basket, moved sharply off-the-ball, and showed off a nice jump-stop in the lane during the 3rd quarter. But what stood out right away is that this is a guard that can play above the rim. That hasn't been a part of this team for a while. So that's good." Another note from the same game: "Wasn't it nice not to see Chris Duhon?"
The Sun Sentinel's Ira Winderman watching the Heat and Nets in Paris: "Michael Beasley had his one-on-one moments upon entering, and later worked well in tandem with Marion. For now, Beasley has defenders backing off, which has allowed him to feature his feathery jumper. So far, most of Beasley's offense has been initiated from the perimeter. ... How exactly did the Nets' Chris Douglas-Roberts fall to the second round? His scoring was effortless at times."
Call it a curse. Bitter Sonic fans notice that Thunder minority owner Aubrey McClendon has apparently lost nearly $2 billion on paper since the team began relocating this summer.
David Berri of the Wages of Wins breaks down the numbers and suggests that giving Amir Johnson Jason Maxiell's minutes last season would have earned the Pistons two additional victories.
Haywoode Workman, former hard-nosed NBA point guard is now Haywoode Workman, newbie hard-nosed NBA referee.
The Salt Lake Tribune's Ross Siler gives us some meaningful insight into Jerry Sloan, courtesy of some talk about Morris Almond: "If you looked at the box score, you'd probably think Almond had a pretty good game. He scored 10 points and hit 5 of 10 shots in 19 minutes. Only Okur and Korver scored more. But Sloan was not happy, judging from his postgame comments. 'Well, he scored points, but I'm disappointed with the way he runs the floor,' Sloan said. 'He looks like he's not concerned about running the floor and helping defensively. We can't afford to have that, especially out of our mid-sized people. I mean, everybody likes to score. But if that's all you're going to do, then it's hard to play to win. Numbers are one thing, but you can win with less numbers and more effort on the other side. He's got to rebound the ball, pass the basketball, learn to do some other things, rather than just being a one-dimensional player.'"
Martell Webster just had a screw surgically inserted into his foot.
Is that optimism among Nugget fans?