Bernucca: Skiles Working His Defensive Magic in Orlando

Magic pregame huddle

As an NBA coach, Scott Skiles has always had a definitive modus operandi. In his three previous jobs, Skiles has dramatically improved his team’s defense, in some cases taking it from near the bottom of the league to near the top. That improvement helps the team become an absolute pain in the neck to play and make a quantum leap from the lottery to the playoffs. Then at some point, Skiles and his hypercompetitive nature become a bit overbearing for some players,

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Bernucca: Is NBA Experiencing Parity, or Mediocrity?

Warriors

Is the NBA inching toward parity? Or slowly sinking into mediocrity? Those may seem like strange questions during a season in which the Golden State Warriors have imposed their dominance over the rest of the league in unprecedented fashion. Yes, at 22-0 the Warriors have obliterated the best start in NBA history and have looked downright unbeatable while the clock was ticking during a vast majority of those 22 games. In that sense, they present a very strong argument against the notion

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Tweet of the Night: Dirk Nowitzki throws shade on Pau Gasol’s milestone moment

Pau Gasol

For Chicago big man Pau Gasol, the Bulls’ home matchup with the Charlotte Hornets on Saturday evening represented a unique milestone in the form of his 1,000th career NBA regular-season game. Gasol, now 35 years old, was in a jovial mood on social media as tipoff approached. In fact, the seven-footer even created a special #Pau1000 hashtag to encourage fans to submit videos of their favorite Gasol moments over his first 1,000 games.Today I’ll be playing my 1000 #RegularSeason game & I wanna

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Scotto: NBA Season’s First Quarter Observations

quarterpole1

We’re a quarter of the way through the regular season and the NBA landscape has shifted dramatically. Kobe Bryant is retiring after this season and wants to be remembered as a “talented overachiever” when it’s all said and done. Meanwhile, Bryant’s Los Angeles Lakers (3-15) trail only the Philadelphia 76ers (1-19) for the league’s worst record. With every loss, the Lakers grow closer to keeping their top-three protected draft pick and potentially land top prospect Ben Simmons. On the flip side, the Golden

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Hubbard: Best Bet on Kobe This Season was Not Betting Your Gut

Kobeface

The troubling part of Kobe Bryant’s descent into mediocrity – to be kind and properly deferential – is that the more gullible among us shared his vision of himself. Yes, we were aware of Achilles, knee and shoulder injuries that caused him to miss 123 of 164 games the last two years. But this is basketball’s version of the bionic man. Some of us believed what Lakers coach Byron Scott said after Bryant’s right rotator cuff injury in January. “I think the

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Sheridan: The forgotten Kobe story: He almost became a Bull

Kobeface

We now know for sure that Kobe Bryant will retire as a Laker for life. The farewell tour officially begins tonight in Philadelphia, where he will be booed … most likely. They have booed Kobe in Philly since he was a 17-year-old rookie in the NBA, and Philly fans have a ton of outrage- most of it directed at Sam Hinkie – that they are eager to vent on somebody, anybody. So it will be an interesting start to Bryant’s first

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Sheridan: The Warriors are going to lose, just like ’96 Bulls once did. But without the drama

CineSport

Inevitably, the Golden State Warriors are going to lose a game. Probably more than one game. Perfection is impossible in the NBA, despite what we’ve seen from Stephen Curry and Co. over the first four weeks of the season. The numbers associated with Golden State’s season-opening winning streak are mind-boggling – even more so when we start comparing them to the numbers put up by the Chicago Bulls during the 1995-96 season, when they won an NBA-record 72 games. Golden State is

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Ladewski: Warriors Have What It Takes To Catch 1995-96 Bulls

Jordan-Pippen

For months, the Golden State Warriors heard the taunts of lucky and fluky and worse.  Now, the defending NBA champions have begun to answer their critics as if to say, ‘OK, if we win ’em all, then would that be good enough for you?” The Warriors aren’t quite 82-0 yet — they’re only 10-0 — but their start has been so drop-dead dominant, so utterly impressive that it makes you wonder if theirs can be one of those seasons for the ages. Six of the victories came against playoff

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