Exciting and new. (Photos via SLAM Online)
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: SLAM Online. We'd already seen Ray Allen's "J. Shuttlesworth" jersey, and now we get a look at five more of the nickname-bearing "Name Collection" jerseys that the Miami Heat and Brooklyn Nets will wear for several upcoming games, including their Jan. 10 matchup at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. (ESPN New York has a look at the thrilling, exciting "JJ" jersey that Joe Johnson will sport, too.) What say you — yay? Nay? Meh? Whoops? Barf? Splat? Onomatopoeia?
PF: Bright Side of the Sun. Amid discussion of "failed" tanks and potential win-now trades, I enjoyed this Phoenix Suns fan's call to stop, smell the roses and appreciate the moment: "[...] don't prompt me to look elsewhere. It's all here right now. This Suns team is an amazing story."
SF: Denver Post. With Colorado becoming the home of the world's first state-licensed marijuana retailers on Wednesday, Benjamin Hochman caught up with former Indiana Pacers center David Harrison — who received a five-game suspension for marijuana use back in January of 2008 and who hasn't played in an NBA game since the end of the '07-'08 season — about the stigma surrounding athletes and weed: "With me and other athletes caught using drugs, you get labeled as a problem. 'He's crazy. He can't do this or that.'"
SG: Project Spurs. Jesse Blanchard offers a comparison of the two small forwards who'll take the floor when the New York Knicks visit the San Antonio Spurs on Thursday night: "If Carmelo Anthony consumes a vast amount of resources to produce one elite-level skill (scoring), Kawhi Leonard is his opposite. For lack of a better analogy, he’s fuel efficient."
6th: Real GM. Jonathan Tjarks on the razor-thin difference between being on the chopping block and being the Eastern Conference Coach of the Month, and how the Toronto Raptors' recent post-Rudy Gay trade run of success might indicate that Masai Ujiri's rebuilding job might be much further along than anticipated.
7th: Blazersedge. In answering a reader's question about whether he thinks the Portland Trail Blazers' perimeter-heavy attack can win playoff series, Dave Deckard offers what seems to me a very reasonable perspective on the Blazers' chances to run the Western Conference gauntlet: "This isn't a team you'd trust in the post-season, at least not entirely. [...] I don't necessarily subscribe to the Charles Barkley theory that a jump-shooting team can't succeed in the playoffs. I suspect a jump-shooting team that also allows more points in the paint than anybody in the league while scoring few themselves will have a hard time succeeding in the playoffs."
8th: Hickory High. Andrew Johnson digs into the NBA's SportVU player-tracking data in search of a better way of measuring which players are most turnover-prone given how often they actually touch the basketball and their differing offensive roles.
9th: Deadspin. Really hoping this doesn't catch on as a new nickname for Glen Davis.
10th: The 700 Level. Andrew Unterberger examines the All-Star cases of the Philadelphia 76ers, and actually comes away with one he feels like he can argue pretty convincingly.
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