Ball Don't Lie
- Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie2 hrs ago
As the court battle between Donald Sterling and his wife Shelly Sterling continues, the fate of the Los Angeles Clippers looks increasingly uncertain. Two weeks ago, we saw the beginning of the case to decide control of the Sterling Family Trust — which, for the NBA's purposes, will also decide if Mrs. Sterling can sell the team to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer for a record sum. Over the course of a few days, Donald Sterling confirmed virtually everything negative about his association with the world's largest basketball league, engaging in activities and making comments ranging from the irresponsible to the bizarre to the grotesque.
- Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie6 hrs ago
On Monday night, the Sacramento Kings and Houston Rockets closed out the NBA's summer schedule with the title game of the Las Vegas Summer League. Naturally, though, a league championship is not the primary draw of the NBA's various summer leagues. Instead, it's getting a look at freshly drafted rookies like Cleveland Cavaliers wing Andrew Wiggins and improving youngsters like Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks. In the absence of especially meaningful games, it can be exciting to witness the future of the league.
Yet the Vegas Summer League is not populated only by this minority of notable prospects. The vast majority of participants don't have contracts or a solidified future in the league. For them, these games are an opportunity to show their skills in front of an audience of NBA executives and teams around the globe. The goal is not so much to start their careers as to extend them.
To get insight into the experience of these players, James Herbert of Eye on Basketball spoke to several veterans in Vegas:
- Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie10 hrs ago
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: Truth About It. Kyle Weidie tries to get his arms around the apparently concluded (for now, at least) NBA career of Jan Vesely, whom the Washington Wizards selected with the sixth overall pick in the 2011 NBA draft — ahead of Kemba Walker, Klay Thompson, Kawhi Leonard, Nikola Vucevic, Kenneth Faried, Nikola Mirotic, Reggie Jackson, Jimmy Butler, Chandler Parsons and Isaiah Thomas, among others — and who "sure did mean well," but "was not an NBA man," as it turned out.
- Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie10 hrs ago
The 2013-14 Indiana Pacers should go down as one of the more infamous flameouts in NBA history. The squad didn’t have the indignity of being tossed out of the postseason in the first round as the 1994 Seattle SuperSonics, 1999 Miami Heat or 2007 Dallas Mavericks did, but needing 13 games to dispatch the Atlanta Hawks and Washington Wizards after a 56-win season runs nearly along those upset lines.
Indiana eventually fell to a Miami Heat team in the sixth game of the Eastern Conference finals, a game they more or less expected to lose. It was an embarrassing effort, as the Pacers lost 117-92, and one in line with a months-long swoon that saw the team run up a 33-28 record (postseason included) after a 33-7 start.
It was an ungodly meltdown. The Pacers lost home-court advantage in each of their three playoff series. The team’s defense dipped from the realm of the dominant into the ranks of the mediocre, and both the scout- and stat-test documented an offense that was embarrassing to behold at times. The Pacers were absolutely rudderless, a shocking turn after such a fantastic start to the season.
- Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie12 hrs ago
When the Los Angeles Lakers waived Kendall Marshall last Friday to clear his unguaranteed 2014-15 salary from the books, freeing up cap space with which to complete other signings, they hoped to be able to bring him back into the fold if he cleared waivers. The Milwaukee Bucks, however, had other ideas, swooping in over the weekend to make a waiver claim on the 22-year-old point guard and add him to new head coach Jason Kidd's backcourt mix.
The Bucks had plenty of money to spend, and will remain well under the 2014-15 salary cap of $63.065 million after being awarded Marshall's league-minimum salary; they've essentially bought a $1 scratch-off ticket in the hope of cashing out with some big-time, bargain-priced playmaking.
- Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie12 hrs ago
The Sports Illustrated headline to its post about the Vine that Andre Drummond took of himself at a bowling alley reads “Andre Drummond is having some trouble bowling,” and though we respect the work and tone of the good folks and fine minds over at SI, we could not disagree more.
Andre Drummond is fantastic at bowling. Watch:
Hopefully Sports Illustrated will run a correction to its error in a future publication.
- - - - - - -
- Kelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie13 hrs ago
It was recently revealed that a change is due to the uniforms of the 17 NBA teams that have won an NBA championship in the league’s history. Well, 16 of the 17 teams, but we’ll get to that in a second.
The back of the uniforms will project a gold band signifying the franchise’s championship past and number of titles on the collar of each jersey, with the NBA also tossing its own logo to the back in order to make way for advertisements on the front of the jersey because the NBA values money over aesthetics and don’t ever forget that.
Natalie Nakase ends her first Summer League as an assistant coach, makes a little history along the wayKelly Dwyer at Ball Don't Lie14 hrs ago
Every summer, the NBA’s Summer Leagues allow for various untested coaching types to move a few seats over on the bench, or run a team for the first time. Rookies, like Jason Kidd, Derek Fisher and Steve Kerr get their first run as leading men. Longtime assistants take over as head coaches. Tape operators and advance scouts get to actually sit on the bench and act as assistants. The experience for these hopeful coaches is as significant as the experienced gleaned by the various rookies, young prospects and fringe types that populate Summer League rosters.
Natalie Nakase is no coaching rookie. She was the assistant and then head coach of the Saitama Broncos, a men’s team that plays in the Japanese League. She’s also a “she” and, according to the Los Angeles Clippers, the current Clipper assistant video coordinator is the first female to serve as an assistant coach in any capacity in the NBA’s history. Nakase rounded off head coach Brendan O’Connor’s staff, as veteran Clippers coach Doc Rivers took a deserved summer off following a tumultuous 2013-14 season.
Larry Bird calls Lance Stephenson's exit 'disappointing,' but it's a disappointment of the Pacers' makingDan Devine at Ball Don't Lie14 hrs ago
Lance Stephenson's decision to turn down a five-year, $44 million contract offer from the Indiana Pacers to accept a three-year, $27.4 million deal with the Charlotte Hornets left plenty of people scratching their heads ... including, it seems, Larry Bird.
A very proud LeBron James gets animated watching his son show out in 4th grade AAU tournament (Video)Dan Devine at Ball Don't Lie18 hrs ago
Sure, LeBron James might have taken care of his biggest bit of offseason business by deciding to rejoin the Cleveland Cavaliers in free agency, but that doesn't mean he can just take the rest of the summer off. He's still got plenty to do — crowdsourcing his new jersey number, (reportedly) recruiting new teammates and, perhaps most important of all, taking a front-row seat to watch his son, LeBron Jr., play for the Miami City Ballers in the AAU Fourth Grade Division I national championship tournament, held this past weekend at Kentucky Basketball Academy in Lexington, Ky.