Kelly Dwyer

  • Phil Jackson: Modern players 'lack the skills to play the triangle'

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 1 hr ago

    It’s not an uncommon refrain, among NBA lifers of a certain age, and they’re not always wrong in cuing up the chorus. The game has evolved, or devolved to certain eyes, and players are capable of as many new things as they aren’t capable of older tenets that were at one time integral to how the game was played in decades past.

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    Rare is the older observer, however, that pins his perception on a single style of play. In this case, as is usually the case, it’s New York Knicks president Phil Jackson. The man that grew up playing under Bill Fitch and Red Holzman’s pass-heavy offenses prior to falling in love with Tex Winter’s triangle offense during the mid-1980s (after being hired to work alongside Winter as a Chicago Bulls assistant coach) doesn’t think modern players are suited for the offense he’d hoped to bring to New York.

    Q – Okay. Let’s turn to the Knicks. There’s been a lot of criticism in the media about how ineffectively the team is running the triangle. Why is this so?

    It’s just more of the same, even as the game changes.

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  • Jimmy Butler doesn't mind being left in the dark with trade rumors

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 3 hrs ago

    On the NBA’s 2016 draft night, for the first hour of the proceedings at least, the name on everyone’s lips was “Jimmy Butler.” Everyone knew Ben Simmons would be taken No. 1 overall by Philadelphia, Woj already had picks 1-through-19 (all 19-year olds, incidentally) tweeted out, but just about every other tweet besides those in the moments leading up to the draft had the Chicago Bulls swingman potentially on his way toward either Boston or, in a new twist, a Minnesota Timberwolves team fronted by ex-Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau.

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    Chicago fans were apoplectic at the thought of dealing a player who averages over 20 points while playing standout defense for a prospect that someday could average over 20 points while playing standout defense, but such is the lack of faith Bulls fans have in their team’s front office that many expected a deal to eventually be agreed upon.

    […]

    “That has nothing to do with me,’’ Butler said on Thursday. “I don’t move guys. Just like I always say – people are going to think what they want to think.’’

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  • LeBron James ordered a pizza with 16 different toppings

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 5 hrs ago

    LeBron James is allowed to eat whatever the heck he wants. He averaged nearly 42 minutes per game during his brilliant MVP turn in last season’s NBA Finals win, he’s already played more minutes than several NBA luminaries that retired in their mid-to-late 30s (LeBron is 31), and he burns more calories before tip-off than most people do all day.

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

    This, however, via his Facebook page (and our pals at Reddit) is something else:

    LeBron’s Facebook caption reminded us to never “order while starving.” He also added a side salad.

    “High-rise dough” and spicy marinara with mozzarella? That’s a typical start to things, a pie usually then topped off with pepperoni and mushroom (or, for the gut-watching NBA player, grilled chicken and spinach) before ending the order.

    Nah. Not for The King. He’s come a long way since asking for well-done steaks, pre-cut for him.

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  • Pat Riley says new addition Dion Waiters is worth more than he signed for

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 1 day ago

    Pat Riley says Dion Waiters is not worth the contract Riley’s Miami Heat just signed Waiters to. We’ll leave it up to you as to whether or not you personally think Waiters is worth less or more than the $2.9 million “room exception” Waiters agreed to earlier this week, but we can tell you that Pat Riley sees Waiters as a player far better than the $2.9 million he’ll play for in 2016-17.

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    Riley said as much recently while introducing his newest swingman, one that will be counted on to help make up for the loss of veterans like Luol Deng and Joe Johnson, alongside the shocking departure of Miami Heat legend Dwyane Wade.

    And Dion? Dion is ready to set sail:

    A photo posted by ???????????????? (@waiters3) on Jul 26, 2016 at 8:43am PDT

    Should they be?

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  • Kings GM Vlade Divac on Rudy Gay: 'He has my number.'

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 1 day ago

    NBA players have to walk a delicate line, just as team executives do. Even the least-committed of end-of-bench players would still like to be in the loop when it comes to the front office’s personnel plans, as even minor moves can cost them playing time, chances at better statistics (and the resulting better contract) or, at worst, removal from the roster.

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

    Then there are the middling players, the near-stars. The guys with trade value that you still wouldn’t mind keeping on the roster. Players like Sacramento’s Rudy Gay, who recently revealed that (like the rest of us) he has “no idea” what is going on with the Kings’ personnel plans moving forward.

    “He has my number.”

    That is to say, “no excuses. Text or call me if you need me, guy.”   Completely understandable, right?

    Well, Vlade then followed up with this:

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  • George Hill learned about his trade to Utah via a voicemail from Larry Bird

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 11 days ago

    The NBA moves fast. It’s a league dominated by individual players, and the resulting movement. If you’re not up on everything, you’ll fall behind; and Woj and Shams already know what you’re having for dinner. On August 18th.

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

    This is why it’s understandable that Indiana Pacers president Larry Bird left a voicemail for former Pacers guard George Hill to inform him that he’d been dealt away from his hometown team and to the Utah Jazz. If Bird hadn’t left that voicemail, the thinking goes, Hill would have to hear the news via Twitter, website, a TV station’s ticker, or any number of text messages asking “Utah?”

    Via 8 Points, 9 Seconds, here’s Hill’s side of things from a talk with Vigilant Sports:

    […]

    Again, Larry Bird had to say something , right?

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  • Dwight Howard thinks his back woes are over 'for the rest of my career'

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 12 days ago

    Dwight Howard underwent back surgery in 2012, and co-incidentally or not he hasn’t looked like the same player since. Back and knee issues limited him to half a season in 2014-15, his penultimate year with the Houston Rockets, and though Howard only missed 11 games in his final season with Houston in 2015-16, his presence wasn’t enough to pair with James Harden and turn the Rockets into the championship contender they should have been.

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    In response, the Rockets hired former Howard nemesis Mike D’Antoni as coach during the offseason prior to watching Dwight move back home to Atlanta and the Hawks’ offer of a three-year, $70.5 million deal.

    And his back? Dwight doesn’t want to hear about it. He’ll be fine, he says. From Steve Hummer at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

    Will his health hold up, specifically a back that was surgically repaired in 2012 (he also missed 52 games in his first two seasons in Houston with a variety of ailments, mostly knee)?

    Wait, what?

    Indeed.)

  • Pat Riley discusses Miami's 'tough summer,' divorce from Dwyane Wade

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 12 days ago

    Pat Riley says he still has not spoken with Dwyane Wade, a three-time titlist with the Miami Heat that left the team after 13 years to join the Chicago Bulls as a free agent earlier in July. The Heat president, now entering his 22nd season with that title, says he has only begun to draft a long email to his longtime superstar, as yet unsent.

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

    As organizations tend to do while burying the bad news, Riley faced the media on Saturday afternoon for his first official offseason press conference of the free agent season. Unsolicited, Riley dove right into the “great regret” that he has for not doing all he could to keep Wade in Miami, even though such a separation (while unseemly in the interim) might be in Riley’s franchise’s best interests eventually.

    From Barry Jackson at the Miami Herald:

    Wow. That must be some hell of an email to look forward to.

    wade: ill sign w the bucks

    riley: ok

    wade (goes to door): ill do it!

  • Kevin Garnett might not be up to returning for his 22nd season

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 13 days ago

    When the Minnesota Timberwolves dealt for Kevin Garnett back in 2015, it was initially assumed by most that the future Basketball Hall of Famer was taking one last farewell lap around the Target Center. That he would bow out as an active NBA player once his contract ran out following the 2014-15 season. That his time on the court was just about up.

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

    Instead, KG surprised by signing a two-year (!) deal with Minnesota during the offseason, happily taking to a leadership role that would still demand the 2004 NBA MVP would suit up for most contests, even though he could barely get on the court for what turned out to be a cellar-dwelling Timberwolves team down the stretch of 2014-15.

    “I just asked him, ‘Kevin, what are you going to do?’ His answer was, ‘I’d really like to play next year ‘cuz I’d like to go out knowing we got into the playoffs,’ ” Taylor said.

    “Then he said, ‘I don’t know if I can.’

    […]

    Tom Thibodeau can relate.

  • Nate Thurmond, Warriors great, dies at age 74

    Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie 13 days ago

    Basketball Hall of Famer and Golden State Warriors great Nate Thurmond died on Saturday, the seven-time NBA All-Star was 74. Thurmond, who was named to the NBA’s 50 Greatest Players list in 1996, had reportedly been battling leukemia.

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    Thurmond was a burly, all-around center whose work in the middle last through two NBA generations. He entered the NBA in 1963 out of Bowling Green State and immediately made an impact as a power forward on a West-leading San Francisco Warriors team that featured Wilt Chamberlain at center. Thurmond made the NBA’s All-Rookie team as the Warriors made the Finals in 1963-64, and he was pressed into service in the pivot (making the first of his All-Star Game appearances along the way) the next season when Chamberlain was dealt back to Philadelphia.

    “We needed a maturity, a guy that had been down roads that we hadn’t been,” said Fitch, who had a master’s degree in psychology. “We got the whole thing with him. We needed what he gave us on the floor and we needed what he gave us off the floor.”

    Nate Thurmond is survived by his wife, Marci.

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