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: 8 Points, 9 Seconds. Another day, another look at what's wrong with a suddenly listless contender. Here, Scott Stewart runs through the problems that have had the Indiana Pacers looking so run-down — 7-7 in their last 14 games, losers of four straight, with a positively pedestrian defense (tied for 15th in the league in points allowed per possession since the All-Star break, per NBA.com's stat tool) and a dismal offense (26th among 30 teams over that same stretch, better than only the Orlando Magic, Denver Nuggets, Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers) — over the past couple of weeks.
PF: The Classical. Speaking of those Pacers, here's Steve McPherson on Paul George, who "does amazing things, and will continue to do them," even if he might find his path to all-time greatness impeded by those who've preceded him and those who are on his heels.
SG: Bleacher Report. Howard Beck with a smart suggestion that we all take a deep breath on the "tanking" hysteria: "Tanking exists. It is happening. But it is not an epidemic, and it has not dramatically altered competitive balance."
PG: The Bird Writes. Yes, the New Orleans Pelicans have been decimated by injuries this season, but chalking up their disappointing 26-37 record solely to poor health ignores what Oleh Kosel sees as perhaps the team's most glaring problem: Monty Williams' consistent failings on the bench.
6th: Awful Announcing. Ed Sherman takes us behind the scenes of how Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy and the ABC crew broadcast Sunday's Miami Heat-Chicago Bulls matinee.
7th: Statitudes. Justin Kubatko makes the statistical case for Tim Duncan being "perhaps most consistently great player in NBA history."
8th: The Point Forward. Rob Mahoney on the overall offensive improvement that's made more and more defenders decide to just clock Blake Griffin: "As much as Griffin might grapple and agitate, opponents single him out because there are so few other options in dealing with him."
9th: ESPN Dallas. Monta Ellis is "in a happy place" with the Dallas Mavericks, which is nice.
10th: Boston Globe. Great stuff from Baxter Holmes on Rajon Rondo and challenges — the ones the fiery point guard regularly poses to his opponents, teammates and coaches, the one he faces in his attempt to get back to full speed after losing nearly a year to a torn ACL, and the big one being posed to him amid the Celtics' in-progress rebuild.
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