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Ball Don't Lie

The 10-man rotation, starring the ghosts in the Toronto Raptors’ machines

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Not sure where the ghost Raptors should be on this drive. (Jeff Siner/Charlotte Observer/MCT via Getty Images)

A look around the league and the Web that covers it. It's also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren't always listed in order of importance. That's for you, dear reader, to figure out.

C: Grantland. You've likely already read Zach Lowe's two-part piece on how the Toronto Raptors are using STATS' SportVU camera system (which I'vewritten about before) to track and analyze what their players do during games, especially on the defensive end, and how the information coming from it is being filtered through the coaching staff and players ... but it's probably worth another read. Definitely, in fact.

For one thing, the amount of work Lowe must have done to get an NBA team to be willing to not only grant him access to this stuff, but share it publicly on a well-trafficked sports website, absolutely had to be astounding; reporting-wise, this was a big, big deal. For another, visualizations and analyses like these are where NBA decision-making is going; whether we think that's a good thing or a bad thing, it's a true thing, and so getting familiar seems like a smart idea. For a third, the questions as to what the heck Toronto could be thinking by publicizing its advancements in this area opens up a whole 'nother can of worms, which is pretty fascinating in and of itself. I think it's pretty awesome that a piece of NBA journalism gives us this much to think about, hash out, bat around and consider.

PF: SB Nation. With March Madness now officially underway, Paul Flannery reminds all of us NBA fans that we don't have to be jerks to NCAA fans. Let people enjoy what they enjoy; there's plenty of room for people liking different things.

SF: NBA Auctions. Hey, remember those rad warm-up jackets from the 2013 NBA All-Star Game with the patches that showcased the players' career accomplishments? Well, you can bid on them — Kobe Bryant's is going for $2,919 right now and LeBron James' is up to $2,019.99, but there are some relative bargains to be had. Bidding goes until 9 p.m. EDT tonight, so get moving if you're into it.

SG: "We'll Always Have Linsanity." A bunch of really great hoops writers — several of the principals behind Knickerblogger and The New York Times' Off the Dribble blog, Seth Rosenthal from Posting and Toasting, Jared Dubin from Hardwood Paroxysm, Jason Concepcion (whom you might know as @netw3rk) and Dan Litvin of the Knicks FanBlog — collaborated on a book about the 2011-12 New York Knicks season, which began with hope for a deep postseason run behind the three-headed monster of Carmelo Anthony, Amar'e Stoudemire and Tyson Chandler, and proceeded to get 100 percent crazy, highlighted (of course) by the emergence, recession and exit of Jeremy Lin. The book finally saw release this week — it's available in print and electronically — and the authors have been doing promotional stuff for it, like this fun podcast with Zach Harper of CBSSports.com. I encourage you to check out an excerpt and, if you dig, think about scooping it.

PG: Game of Thrones on YouTube. Speaking of the Knicks, 'Melo teasing the forthcoming third season of "Game of Thrones," duh.

6th: Magic Basketball. Finally given a chance to get consistent, legitimate minutes after being traded from the Milwaukee Bucks to the Orlando Magic, Tobias Harris is proving that he's actually pretty freakin' good. Jacob Frankel breaks down the Tennessee product's game, development and emergence.

7th: Bucksketball. Speaking of the Bucks, they've been way better offensively and way worse defensively since importing J.J. Redick and running out more three-guard lineups of Redick, Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis. This kind of stands to reason. Still, interim coach Jim Boylan continues to bemoan his team's defensive aptitude and call for more effort, more effort, more effort. Which begs the question: Does Boylan have unrealistic expectations of what his roster can do? If so, what does that mean for the Bucks as presently constituted?

8th: USA TODAY Sports. Sam Amick sits down with Denver Nuggets head coach George Karl for a really good and thoughtful interview about roster turnover, managing players' expectations, the importance of getting past Round 1 and much more.

9th: Hardwood Paroxysm. Michael Hogan of The Basketball Champs Belt writes about the love of the game that characterizes NBA fandom and fans' shared experiences: "In suffering, our love will grow. And in success it will be rewarded. But if that success never comes again, we will at least know that we will have suffered together."

10th: NBA.com's Hang Time Blog. Now that we know Andrew Bynum won't see the floor for the Philadelphia 76ers this season, a handful of our favorite scribes try to answer the two big questions: Will he ever play a second for Philly? And, if not, where will he play next?

Got a link or tip for Ball Don't Lie? Give me a shout at devine (at) yahoo-inc.com, or follow me on Twitter.

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