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Monday, August 26, 2013
Monday Bullets

By Ethan Sherwood Strauss

• Not sure how I’m supposed to feel about Dirk Nowitzki hawking season tickets for the team that recently crumbled around him. Sad? Amused? It is a funny takeoff on the Geico ads. The TV spot comes after a season where Dirk aired well-founded pessimism about his Mavs.

• Rob Mahoney of Sports Illustrated deftly weaves through the confusing thickets of Brooklyn Nets draft pick trades.

• Speaking of the Nets, will new coach Jason Kidd be a small-ball kinda' guy?

• Which stats matter? Which are the best in predicting success? That’s the project Ian Levy at Hickory High is invested in right now.

• If people on your team are passing to you, are you more inclined to pass? There is now academic research on this very topic.

• The Suns were able to get value for Luis Scola and the Rockets weren’t. Why? Phoenix was willing to play Scola and give him the ball. Dave Dulberg at Valley of the Suns makes the case for puffing up veteran trade value: “In July 2012, the Suns claimed veteran Luis Scola off amnesty waivers for the price of a rather reasonable three-year contract for $13.5 million. Why were the Rockets so willingly to amnesty a veteran starter? Was he getting old? Was he a problem in the locker room? A year later the Suns turned that pick-up — one filled with many question marks — into a future first-round pick and a former first-round pick. How did they do it? Simple, they featured him.”

• I’d encourage anyone to check out Dave Zirin’s appearance on the B.S. Report. Zirin notes the building awkwardness over how Jason Collins remains unsigned. An initially happy story certainly hasn’t progressed as expected.

• Fun with Clippers similarity scores.