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Darren Rovell @darrenrovell

In Phil Knight's book he says LeBron bought him a 1972 Rolex (year Nike made 1st shoe). Was etched: With thanks for taking a chance on me."

Nichols: Rockets are infuriating to watch

From The Jump, Rachel Nichols expresses her frustration with the Rockets due to their lack of effort all season and lackluster play in their do-or-die Game 5 against the Warriors.


Jalen: Shaq was a good leader

Jalen Rose told Dan Le Batard that Shaquille O'Neal did a good job leading the Lakers during the 2000s.


Lowe: Hornets pull out all their tricks

Miami's defense versus Charlotte's offense showed the razor-thin margin between winning and losing. Game 5 tweaks

Justin Verrier ESPN Staff Writer 

Spencer Hawes (right knee sprain) is listed as doubtful for tomorrow's Game 6. Neither Nic Batum nor Cody Zeller appear on the Hornets' injury list.

SportsCenter @sportscenter

James Harden and Dwight Howard may have played their final game together. They weren't always on the same page.


Marc Stein ESPN Senior Writer 

As for Dwight Howard, don't forget that it's his option -- not the team's -- whether he stays or goes this summer and Howard does love the city of Houston. But the overwhelming expectation around the league is that Dwight will bypass his $23.3 million option for next season and opt for free agency in July. As one team source told our own Calvin Watkins this week, Howard's relationship with James Harden is "cordially bad." Meaning that the players aren't openly in battle but the disconnect between them is an undeniable and pressing issue.

Justin Verrier ESPN Staff Writer 

Steve Clifford says he'll stick with same starters for Game 6. Nic Batum (left foot) and Cody Zeller (knee) are both expected to play.

Rivers stays strong in eye of Clippers' storm

When asked who he leans on during tough times, Doc Rivers got emotional reminiscing about his mother who passed away in June. “She was his rock," said Austin Rivers. “My father's a very private person. His life outside of basketball, he doesn't really share it with anybody.” Story

Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports

Marc Stein ESPN Senior Writer 

Roster changes and a coaching change loom in Houston, but the Rockets need a culture change too. Harden's too good not to set a better tone

Royce Young ESPN Staff Writer 

Kevin Durant on why Kawhi Leonard has blossomed so much as an offensive player: "Opportunity."


Marc Stein ESPN Senior Writer 

The optics are bad for a team leader not to ride with his teammates whatever Harden's reasons are. It's likewise on Houston for allowing it.

Marc Stein ESPN Senior Writer 

ESPN sources say Harden, for example, frequently skips the team bus to road games, not just in this series as reported by our Calvin Watkins

Royce Young ESPN Staff Writer 

Steven Adams on why he doesn't trash talk Tim Duncan:


Marc Stein ESPN Senior Writer 

A long summer with lots to contemplate awaits James Harden, who remains a brilliant individual force offensively but must be a better leader