Andris Biedrins stares icily into the middle distance. (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: Sports Illustrated. "There are few sins in pro sports worse than losing your confidence, but admitting that you have is one of them." Chris Ballard, one of the best people alive at writing these kinds of stories, tells us about what's going on inside the head of Golden State Warriors center Andris Biedrins when he steps to the free throw line and attempts not to fail. It is simple, excellent writing about something that is complicated, chaotic and depressing.
PF: San Antonio Express-News. Our man Mike Monroe uses a great joke by the great @netw3rk as an entry point into a great consideration of former lottery pick Eddy Curry's shot at making the San Antonio Spurs.
SF: The City. We know defense is important; we know defense is hard to analyze. Here's a new way of looking at shot defense that passes the smell test — closing out hard with your hand up matters more than just closing out — and shares some more interesting information on levels of contesting.
SG: At the Hive. Rohan Cruyff blogs not only about the New Orleans Hornets, but about the league at large, and in his advanced-stats travels, he's come across a particularly interesting number. In which category should you want your favorite team to be +6, and why?
PG: New York Times. MarShon Brooks says the tendinitis in his right foot won't keep him out more than two days, but the Brooklyn Nets are taking a longer view that could mean he'll miss the rest of the preseason.
6th: Houston Chronicle. Apparently, the Houston Rockets have four plays. Considering Jeremy Lin's their new franchise point guard, I'm guessing at least three of them are high screen-and-rolls.
7th: South Florida Sun Sentinel. "Chalmers is now to the point where his Twitter page has fans announcing they named their child after him." Wait, MARIO Chalmers?!?!?
8th: Eye on Basketball. We're a couple of days late on this, so forgive us, but Matt Moore's feature on Andre Iguodala — on why he didn't really enjoy basketball his last couple of years with the Philadelphia 76ers, on what kind of opportunity his move to the Denver Nuggets affords, on why a player with a skill-set as hard to grab hold of as Iguodala's ought to matter to us — is worth your time.
9th: Dallas Morning News. As he works his way through knee trouble, Dirk Nowitzki has already had his knee drained twice this preseason, which should give Dallas Mavericks fans simultaneous cases of the heebie-jeebies, willies and oh-dear-god-nos.
10th: Chicago Tribune. Eminently lovable center Kyrylo Fesenko "will never, ever stop joking," which makes me about as happy as humanly possible, but is also serious about making the Chicago Bulls, which should make Chicagoans about as happy as humanly possible.
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