Kelly Dwyer

  • BDL 25: On LeBron James, 'on deck' for NBA-level old age

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 12 hrs ago

    The NBA offseason has brought many changes to rosters, coaching staffs, and the list of championship contenders. As we draw closer to opening night, it’s time to move our focus from the potential impact of each offseason event and onto the broader issues that figure to define this season. The BDL 25 takes stock of, uh, 25 key storylines to get you up to speed on where the most fascinating teams, players, and people stand on the brink of 2016-17.

    Don’t you worry. LeBron James knows he’s staring it down.

    Entering his 14th season, LBJ is hardly the oldest player working in the league he’s dominated for a decade now. Still, he’s just one of 12 active players from his 2003 draft class still playing, with one fighting for his career, another running the Lakers, and several others hoping for one final contract to line up before retirement hits.

    “On deck” for retirement, however, is apt.

    “That’s just not, that ain’t me.”

    […]

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  • Joakim Noah calls Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf's 'frontline' dig 'a low blow'

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 2 days ago

    Rare is the NBA owner that goes on record to discuss player personnel decisions. Even rarer is the NBA owner that goes on record to justify any transactions, especially to the point of criticizing an ex-player that has since been set free.

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    That sort of precedent didn’t get in the way of Chicago Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf from deciding to label former Bulls center Joakim Noah as “not a frontline guy” while talking to media on the days before his induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Noah, who played for Chicago from 2007 through last season prior to signing a four-year, $72 million deal with his hometown New York Knicks, decided to tactfully and accurately answer to Reinsdorf’s dig on Wednesday:

    “Low blow” will and should make the headlines. “I gave it everything I had” should be the takeaway, here.

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  • Mitch Kupchak says he's 'not really in a position to debate' the future of Jim Buss

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 2 days ago

    If you want to get technical with things – and there are a whole lot of Los Angeles Lakers fans that would love to get harshly pedantic with this sort of “thing” – Lakers president of basketball operations Jim Buss is set to be relieved of his duties this spring of his team fails to make the Western Conference finals.

    Or, the spring of 2018. Or, not at all. Things, as you’d expect, are still somewhat fluid.

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    Speaking to the media at the outset of Laker camp, general manager Mitch Kupchak expectedly shooed away any sort of questions regarding the potential impermanence of his, y’know, boss .

    From the Los Angeles Times:

    “I’m not even sure what was said with certainty,” Kupchak said. “From my point of view, we’ve created a team that has a lot of young talent that can grow into, I believe, really good [players] and hopefully NBA players that can leave an imprint on this league. I think we’ve surrounded them with some older veterans that can help us win games.”

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  • Steve Clifford wants the NBA to change its late-game ball advancement policy

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 3 days ago

    Nothing good happens in an NBA game until the final two minutes, but the final two minutes of an NBA game are too darn long. The league can’t really win with its stereotypes sometimes, but to the NBA’s credit it continually is looking for new ways to balance keeping its teams, players, coaches and advertising partners just as happy as it’s ardent (or otherwise) fans.

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    The league currently has a rule that allows teams to move the ball up to the frontcourt in the final two minutes of a game following the securing of a possession and a timeout. This encourages teams to better set up a play closer to the basket in order to save basketball time, but it extends the game (with the timeout and subsequent TV breaks) in real time.

    Hornets coach Steve Clifford thinks the league should lose the rule, and the timeouts that come with it.

    “The game is at an all-time high in popularity, but a lot of people complain about the last two minutes,” Clifford said. “I think it would add a different dimension but it would also be a good thing in addressing our biggest issue.”

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  • Pat Riley, at age 71, isn't thinking of stepping aside anytime soon

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 3 days ago

    Pat Riley would be forgiven if he decided to step aside.

    [Follow Dunks Don’t Lie on Tumblr: The best slams from all of basketball]

    The man has been a basketball fixture since his time with the Kentucky Wildcats from 1964 to 1967. He enjoyed a nine-year career as an NBA journeyman before latching on with the Los Angeles Lakers as a broadcaster in 1977. From there he became the team’s associate and eventual head coach, leading the squad to four NBA titles before stepping down in 1990. Riley took an entire season “off” in 1990-91 while working as an NBC color commentator before moving on to coach the New York Knicks from 1991 through 1995.

    He became the coach and president of the Miami Heat in 1995, stepping down twice (in 2003 and 2008) as head coach but remaining el jefe throughout. That’s 50-odd years of non-stop hoops and, at age 71, one would think the man would be due for a break.

    Riley went on to credit his deputy, general manager Andy Elisburg, calling him “the smartest man in the room” and clarifying that “without him, we wouldn’t be anywhere.”

    That’s Riles, for ya!

    For the interim, at least. More on that later.

    […]

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  • BDL 25: On the possibility of another NBA lockout

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 4 days ago

    The NBA offseason has brought many changes to rosters, coaching staffs, and the list of championship contenders. As we draw closer to opening night, it’s time to move our focus from the potential impact of each offseason event and onto the broader issues that figure to define this season. The BDL 25 takes stock of, uh, 25 key storylines to get you up to speed on where the most fascinating teams, players, and people stand on the brink of 2016-17.

    The NBA and the league’s players union will have numerous and substantial reasons to opt out of the current collective bargaining agreement on Dec. 15, when such a decision to opt out or in is due, and there will be an NBA lockout in 2017. That much, barring a lightning-quick series of negotiations, is nearly certain.

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    In both cases, despite the advancements made in the CBA negotiations (for both sides; though mainly for the league and its owners), the work stoppage wasn’t worth the grandstanding. This cannot be argued away, even by David Stern’s most ardent supporters.

    There is a precedent for a quick and tidy end to things.

  • Pat Riley says Chris Bosh's 'Heat career is probably over'

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 4 days ago

    For a condition and crisis that has been in play for over 19 months, this all feels so sadly swift and distressing.

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    Miami Heat president Pat Riley confirmed on Monday morning that Chris Bosh’s career with the Heat, in Riley’s estimation, is likely over. Bosh, who missed the latter half of the last two seasons due to complications stemming from a series of blood clots, failed a physical administered by the Heat last week.

    Though the 32-year old vowed to soldier on despite the setback via social media soon after, the Heat franchise appears to have moved on. From the Sun-Sentinel’s Ira Winderman:

    “ […] we are not working toward his return.

    “We feel that, based on the last exam, that his Heat career is probably over.”

    Asked if he felt Bosh’s NBA career was over, as well, Riley said, “that’s up to him.”

    […]

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  • Fearing Kevin Garnett trash talk, Steven Adams pretended not to know English

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 5 days ago

    Kevin Garnett will leave quite the legacy as he walks away from an ungodly 21-year NBA career. He may very well have been the most versatile player in basketball history, in the discussion for the greatest defensive player of all time, and his ability to leave it all on the court was in place even when the Minnesota Timberwolves giant was a Timberpup, working as a teenager all the way back in 1995.

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    Oklahoma City Thunder big man Steven Adams hadn’t even turned two years old when Garnett was drafted that year, and considering the hundreds upon hundreds of NBA players that KG lined up against prior to Adams’ NBA debut in 2013-14, it’s understandable that Garnett may not have been up on the where the Thunder rookie hailed from upon their first meeting.

    The New Zealand native discussed as much with The Oklahoman’s Erik Horne on Sunday:

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  • Violet Palmer, the NBA's first female referee, retires

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 5 days ago

    Violet Palmer, who in 1997 joined Dee Kantner in becoming the first female referees in major American pro sports history, has worked her final NBA game. The veteran referee will hang it up, following her last turn in 2015-16, due to “injury issues.” Bleacher Report’s Howard Beck was the first to report the news.

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    Though Kantner was eventually dismissed from the league’s cadre of refs, Palmer soldiered on through an 18-season NBA career. She worked postseason and All-Star Games, and in 2014 became the first openly gay NBA ref to come out.

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  • Stephen Jackson takes issue with D'Angelo Russell's video game Luke Walton fandom

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 5 days ago

    The whole point of playing sports-related video games is to put yourself in the action. To strap yourself into a car pushing 200 mph, to stare down a Roger Clemens fastball with a comically ill-shapen bat, or to peer over an offensive line hell-bent on making sure you find the open receiver tagged with the ‘Y’ button.

    [Follow Dunks Don’t Lie on Tumblr: The best slams from all of basketball]

    You get to be who you want to be, be you a superstar or also-ran. Los Angeles Lakers guard D’Angelo Russell, in playing one video game franchise during the 20-year old’s youth, apparently dug running with the also-rans; most notably new Lakers coach and former Laker small forward Luke Walton. From a talk with Kevin Ding at Bleacher Report:

    “I told him I remember playing with him on (NBA) 2K ; I used to always play as him. I’m a fan. I’m definitely a fan. Because he was a point forward.

    “[In] my era, I know he was a point forward.”

    Hey, to each his own.

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