The scorer still looks back nostalgically on those summer days in suburban Los Angeles when he would lace up his sneakers, put on his Lakers jersey and head out to the park. Adults and kids of the neighborhood would flock to the playground every afternoon to watch the human mirage in action. He stood tall at 6-6 and had confidence and moves that were better suited for the Staples Center’s hardwood than Reseda’s blacktops. From afar, if you didn’t know any better,
Amid its myriad injuries, its dozen teams below .500 and its 44-98 record against the Western Conference, there is a looming question regarding the Eastern Conference: Can the East even field an All-Star team? A year ago, Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo, Luol Deng, Joakim Noah, Tyson Chandler, Kyrie Irving, Brook Lopez and Jrue Holiday were among the East’s All-Stars. You can make the argument – irrefutable in some cases, strong in others – that none of those players should be invited back
With the prospect of a dazzling draft class looming in 2014, the word “tanking” has been as much a part of the NBA lexicon as flopping or fouling. Teams with little to no hope of making the playoffs – let alone doing anything there if they did – should just pack it in now and wait for the lottery in May and the draft in June. That’s where the real bonanza lies this season. Tanking has always been part of the NBA,
(When Kevin Durant switched agents, joining Jay-Z’s Roc Nation and bidding adieu to Rob Pelinka and Landmark Sports, author Brad Graham lost a lifeline for the traditional publication of his 250-page book on Kevin Durant: “The Backpack Baller: The Fantastical Basketball Voyage of Kevin Durant.” Undeterred, Graham, 32, is crowd-funding his book through a Kickstarter campaign that ends Dec. 31. You can show your support by clicking through to the Kickstarter page, or you can simply read on and enjoy.
Can money buy happiness? If you’re the Brooklyn Nets and New York Knicks, the answer is no. The Nets have the league’s highest payroll, while the Knicks rank second. The combined exorbitant payroll has produced a deflating 18-38 record and proven any championship aspirations were merely a pipe dream. Ironically, speaking of the pipe, J.R. Smith was the first Knick to panic back when the team was only 3-8 at the time. Now, it appears Smith’s anxiety was warranted. Thanks to injuries, a lack
Brain-twister for you today, folks. Go back to the start of the 2005-06 regular season, and try to name a superstar player who has represented the Eastern Conference in the NBA Finals. Your answer cannot include LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo or Ray Allen. It’s OK. Keep thinking …
As the NBA tries unsuccessfully to manufacture excitement on Christmas for its slate of games, the real truth is impossible to ignore. The NBA is becoming less compelling to watch because there is no one to hate anymore. Since the 1980s, when the league began expanding from 23 teams to the present 30, the rivalries between teams have been on the slippery slope to insignificance. The league schedule has become just a gigantic list of games with no grudge matches and
What are the Brooklyn Nets right now, other than a pathetic underachieving ballclub? Brook Lopez is not coming back this season after breaking his foot, and the Nets dropped to 2-8 without him after Monday’s 103-86 loss to Indiana. Brooklyn is 9-18, a .333 winning percentage. “It’s certainly a big setback, he’s a great player,” Indiana coach Frank Vogel said. “One of the best centers in the league, so it’s obviously very difficult to replace what he gives on both ends.” What’s worse