Sorry, Shawn. (Ronald Martinez/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: SB Nation and The Basketball Jones. Jon Bois and Andrew Unterberger commemorate the career of newly retired Tracy McGrady, each in their inimitable ways. The former recalls the time McGrady scored 13 points in 33 seconds to beat the San Antonio Spurs ("one of the great NBA miracles of the 21st century"). The latter takes a trip down T-Mac Memory Lane, recapping his career in 25 YouTube clips worth revisiting.
PF: SB Nation. Tom Ziller looks back on the slings and arrows suffered by T-Mac and fellow recent retiree Allen Iverson and wonders if, to some extent, they caught more crap than the average bear just because they were weirder (in on-court terms, not off-court ones) than the superstars to whom we'd grown accustomed.
SF: Brew Hoop. On one hand, it's kind of nuts that Larry Sanders just got an eight-figure deal despite averaging 12 points per 36 minutes of floor time over three NBA seasons and having only really had one high-impact season. On the other, as Eric Buenning writes, if the 6-foot-11 shot-blocker and rim protector can finally establish an identity for the meandering Milwaukee Bucks, he may well earn that money and then some.
SG: Blog a Bull. Speaking of identity-defining "cultural superstars," Ricky O'Donnell loves him some Joakim Noah, like all right-thinking basketball lovers should, and offers a multifaceted appreciation of the Chicago Bulls' heart and soul that should help sway those whose hearts somehow remain cold.
PG: Grantland. Zach Lowe puts the Portland Trail Blazers under the microscope, taking a closer look at whether Neil Olshey's persistent offseason effort to overhaul his team's horrendous bench will bear fruit, whether sophomore Damian Lillard can take another step toward the ranks of elite point guards, what the future will hold for the likes of LaMarcus Aldridge and Nicolas Batum, and more.
6th: Orlando Pinstriped Post. Orlando Magic fans, meet "the WoNK pick." The acronym might not be quite as exciting as Victor Oladipo or Tobias Harris, but you're probably going to be using it quite a bit as you talk about the future, so it's best to get familiar pronto.
7th: Daily Thunder. Royce Young runs down the 10 best games of the Oklahoma City Thunder's five-year history. Plenty of good YouTubing to be had within, including a game I briefly revisited a couple of weeks back.
9th: Raptors Republic. With the Toronto Raptors' starting five likely entrenched (Jonas Valanciunas, Amir Johnson, Rudy Gay, DeMar DeRozan, Kyle Lowry) and hope for postseason contention bubbling as the summer winds down, Blake Murphy went digging in Synergy Sports Technology's game-charting data in search of what each member of that top unit likes to do, does well and does poorly, aiming to get a handle on what the Raptors' offense might look like come the start of the regular season.
10th: Wages of Wins Journal. "This is the time when everyone goes crazy with predictions," Arturo Galletti writes, and he then proceeds to do so, using his statistical model to project a range of win totals for the 30 NBA teams and identify his picks for the playoffs. The names, orders and who's in/who's out results might surprise you.
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- Sports & Recreation
- Tracy McGrady
- San Antonio Spurs