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Tuesday Mini-Bullets

  • Dan Steinberg of the D.C. Sports Bog tells of Gilbert Arenas' dad on the D.C.'s 106.7 the Fan. Guest host Brendan Haywood asked Arenas about those who criticize his son for getting injured to much: "'Well, they should talk about that, they should say those things,' said Gilbert Sr., who acknowledged listening to and reading the critics. 'You know, injuries gonna happen. Injuries stopped me from playing sports. You know, they have to understand Gil's heart of the game, [with] how much passion this guy loves the game. It's not about the money for him. ... 'When he told me that he had to go back in to get [the knee] cleaned out, he was hurt. I mean, I had to talk him through some things just to keep his mind away from really just shutting down and going nuts. And I told him it was gonna be ok, he'd have to get back healthy. And nobody really knew about this but me, so I can understand the frustrations from the fans' perspective, because they want winners.'"

  • Tyreke Evans is very strong, in part because he has had a trainer and strength coach since he was 14. Meet LaMont Peterson.

  • The only gangs around where J.R. Smith grew up, says his dad, were gangs of deer.

  • The Heat are talking about developing talent from within. Which is a funny line, really, from a team on rails to import some high-priced talent next summer. (John Hollinger, Insider: "The Heat mostly stood by with their hands in their pockets waiting until next summer, when they'll have enough cap space to add a max-contract free agent and another well-compensated sidekick to run with Dwyane Wade.")

  • Great Gregg Popovich I missed over the weekend. It's about the off-season babying of Tim Duncan's knees, as reported by Johnny Ludden on Yahoo: "My goal is for him to start the season out of shape." What's not in the story, however, is how Duncan has somehow lost a bunch of weight this off-season, while staying off his knees. Diet?

  • A very smart look at Jeff Teague, with rigorous research into how rookie combo guards have done across the NBA recently. My main thought about players like Teague: When Aaron Brooks became so valuable in the playoffs, there was a little more proof of the concept of such players.

  • Bulls rookie James Johnson, breakdancing.

  • Blake Griffin as a higher power. Brandon Jennings, in the same set-up, pleading with one.

  • A characteristic of really smart teams: Letting some non-essential players walk if they get too expensive. The Rockets let Von Wafer go. The Lakers let Trevor Ariza go. The Spurs have let all kinds of players go through the years. In general, if you're going to be efficient, there is no way around relying on good research and scouting to produce a new crop of inexpensive talent to surround the stars.

  • Kobe Bryant's website has a premium section. Is that so wrong? Must rich people give everything away for free?

  • Hollinger (Insider) on the Suns: "Instead of launching a full tear-down operation they extended Steve Nash, signed Channing Frye and re-signed Grant Hill, which means they could still make the playoffs if Amare Stoudemire is healthy. We have no idea how well he'll recover from his eye injury or what the implications are for his game if the eye gives him problems. But if he's not playing to his usual standard the Suns could embark on a long ride down. One quick note to file away if that happens: Oklahoma City has Phoenix's draft pick from the Kurt Thomas salary dump in 2007, and there's no lottery protection whatsoever."