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: San Jose Mercury News' Talking Points Blog. Tim Kawakami sat down for a lengthy interview with the Golden State Warriors' Mark Jackson to get his take on the differences between preparing for the playoffs as a coach and a player; how much perceived mismatches matter in the context of a series; what makes his team tick, individually and collectively; and much more. A really great in-depth chat.
PF: St. Paul Pioneer Press. Minnesota Timberwolves president of basketball operations David Kahn on star-crossed shooting guard Brandon Roy, limited by chronic injuries to just five games in the first year of a two-year contract: "You should assume he will not be playing with us next season." If this ain't the end, I'm thinking we can see the end without binoculars, now.
SF: Celtics Blog. Jeff Clark on the difficulty of getting back to the old familiar narratives after what happened Monday: "A day or two ago we were gearing up for a few weeks of 'Melo and the Knicks hate the Celtics' stories. I think that's done now. There's no time for basketball 'hate' right now."
SG: SB Nation. Which NBA reserve you think most deserves to win this year's Sixth Man of the Year Award — Jamal Crawford, J.R. Smith, Jarrett Jack, Andre Miller, Corey Brewer or any of a score of other worthy candidates — says a lot about your personality. Don't believe me? Tom Ziller's got you pegged, which is word to tossed salads, scrambled eggs and Dr. Frasier Crane.
PG: The Brooklyn Game. Reasonable people can differ here, but the Brooklyn Nets' sharp and self-deprecating television announcer, Ian Eagle, might be the best play-by-play man in the business. Fresh off receiving a New York Sports Emmy for his exemplary work, the TBG crew offers an invigorating compilation of some of Eagle's best calls from this past Nets season ... it's a fun way to spend a few minutes.
6th: Heat.com. Danny Martinez introduces "chaos percentage," a stat designed to tell us "just how often teams create live ball changes of possession, through either blocks with retained possession or steals," and shows us how it lines up with a team's defensive efficiency (the number of points allowed per possession). As you might expect, there's a pretty clear and strong relationship; as you might expect, the defending champion Miami Heat fare pretty well in the cool new metric.
7th: D.C. Sports Bog, twice. Two excellent reads from the quintessential Washington, D.C., blog, albeit with somewhat different tones. First, Sarah Kogod gets deep with Martell Webster about his upbringing, his family and his reputation during a pedicure; next, Dan Steinberg reminds everyone getting hyped up about the no-doubt-playoff-bound-next-year Washington Wizards that we've heard this all before. (Like, almost word-for-word. For real.)
8th: Denver Post. With the Denver Nuggets headed for home-court advantage in the first round and their sights set on a deep playoff run, Benjamin Hochman takes a closer look at one of the team's least flashy but most important players — center Kosta Koufos, whose teammates call him solid, whose coach calls him boring and who's proven to be an integral element of the West's third-best team.
9th: Sports Pickle. "Andrew Bynum Posts Late-Night Facebook Rant on His Injury." Perfect.
10th: Grantland. Jonathan Abrams talks with three NBA veterans — Dominique Wilkins, Elton Brand and Chauncey Billups — who have experienced and come back from ruptured Achilles tendons about what Kobe Bryant's facing over the next six to nine months.
(Two more Kobe-flavored pieces to grow on, since we declined to offer a 10-man yesterday: At The Good Point, Mark Milner notes how appropriate it is that Bryant's injury ties him to the mythical Greek hero Achilles, and at TrueHoop, Kevin Arnovitz reviews how the Los Angeles Lakers' offense looked in its first post-Kobe outing.)
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