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: The Classical. Sam Riches on "the dunk of death," Wordsworth, rising and falling actions, and the place Vince Carter occupied (and maybe still occupies) in NBA fans' minds, especially those of fans who grew up north of the border.
PF: The Hook. Ziller on "the stretch four spectrum," and how Ryan Anderson, Kevin Love, LaMarcus Aldridge and many of the other best power forwards in the league are all, to some degree, variations of Dirk Nowitzki. Delightful.
SF: USA TODAY Sports, ESPN Insider ($), Regressing and Bleacher Report. Hey, have you heard that the Eastern Conference is terrible this year? Like, all-time, historically terrible? Well, it is! The Atlantic Division, especially! Here are some articles about that fact.
SG: TrueHoop. Good stuff from Tom Sunnergren offering some specifics on how the Philadelphia 76ers' front-office approach has changed since the hiring of analytics-focused general manager Sam Hinkie, including some insight into how head coach Brett Brown's go-go pace pushing gets supplemented by highly specific, technologically advanced, individualized practice work and dietary plans. No more late-night cheeseburgers for Lavoy Allen, I'm afraid.
PG: The Diss. Kevin Draper's research shows that, across the NBA, starters are averaging about two fewer minutes per game than they did a decade ago; he argues that this is a "revolutionary — not evolutionary — transformation" in how coaches manage the start and end of games that should have a pretty big impact on how we think about players' roles and even how we talk about the game itself.
6th: Daily Thunder. Speaking of the start of games, Royce Young noticed that the Oklahoma City Thunder kind of stink at winning opening tips, and jump balls in general, so he asked head coach Scott Brooks and reserve big man Nick Collison about it. What results is an interesting and illuminating little piece about the kind of thing you might not ever think about unless you're paying close attention to a team night in and night out.
7th: Jody Genessy. The Deseret News' Utah Jazz beat writer tells a heartwarming story about how trundling off to a Thanksgiving Day practice with his kids resulted in a unique glimpse at one Jazz veteran's class and generosity.
8th: Posting and Toasting, Bleacher Report, The Triangle, SBNation and The New York Times. Today in "Yo, the New York Knicks stiiiiiiiiiink" coverage: Seth Rosenthal rounds up all the most recent "who's being fired/who's being traded" chatter. Jim Cavan considers Carmelo Anthony trades. Jared Dubin and Jason Concepcion try to parse all the maddening garbage surrounding the Knicks' 3-13 start. The Knicks in-fighting now extends to pasta shapes, apparently. Beckley Mason on why it's a bummer that the rest of the nation has to be subjected to the Knicks' Thursday intra-city matchup with the also awful (and shorthanded) Brookyn Nets.
9th: Spurs Nation. Dan McCarney shares a pair of quote-of-the-night nominees from Atlanta Hawks head coach (and former San Antonio Spurs assistant) Mike Budenholzer after Tim Duncan turned back the clock to turn away Bud's new team on Monday.
10th: Portland Roundball Society. This all-caps, punctuation-free, expletive-laden post feels like an entirely appropriate burst of excitement following the Portland Trail Blazers' big Monday night win over the Indiana Pacers.
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