SH Blog: Melo ponders playing for Tom Thibodeau

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Next time I write a blog for Sheridan Hoops, barring unforeseen circumstances, it’ll be the first day of the playoffs. This is what the whole season has been building towards, and it’s always a fun time. Every year has one of those “where were you when” moments. In 2012, I was mowing the lawn when Derrick Rose tore his ACL when he should have been on the bench, and I was debating whether or not to stay for the last set of a weekend-long music festival when the Heat won the title.

In 2013, I managed to actually be in front of the TV for the big moments, including my fellow Calvert Hall College alum Gary Neal going off in the Finals, and Steph Curry and the Warriors knocking off the Nuggets and kickstarting the Great Denver Exodus.

This year could be just as memorable. The Heat will be gunning for a threepeat, the West will be insane, and the Raptors, Wizards and Bobcats will be there. They might even win a few games. The Knicks, Celtics and Lakers, on the other hand, will be sitting at home. Internet points to anyone who can figure out when the last time that happened was.

Now let’s get to the latest news from around the NBA:

Rookie Rankings, Week 21: Gorgui Dieng’s Late-Season Surge

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Gorgui DiengWe have reached the point of the season where teams that are out of the playoff race start giving more playing time to their younger players to see what they may have.

One of those teams is the Minnesota Timberwolves, who may have something in rookie big man Gorgui Dieng.

New Timberwolves GM Flip Saunders spent the offseason loading his roster with veterans such as Kevin Martin, Corey Brewer and Ronny Turiaf in hope of making the playoffs for the first time since 2004. While Minnesota (35-35) already has surpassed last season’s win total, break-even ball doesn’t get it done in the Western Conference.

While the veterans got most of the minutes, Dieng and fellow rookie Shabazz Muhammad – both acquired in a draff day swap that sent Trey Burke to Utah – mostly sat and watched. Through the first 64 games, Dieng accumulated 22 DNPs as Turiaf backed up Nikola Pekovic in the middle.

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Tweet of the Night: Flip Saunders says Love did not ask to be traded

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Kevin LoveWith the trade deadline less than 24 hours away, there have been some rumors about  the interest in Kevin Love from teams like the Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks. This is no surprise: who wouldn’t want to go after one of the best power forwards in the league?

The real question is, why would a report surface about the desire to go after him if he isn’t available? Are the Minnesota Timberwolves considering the idea of shopping him in fear that Love may eventually leave them due to the lack of improvement of their roster? That can’t be true because the front office has already said a number of times that he isn’t going anywhere. It could be that those teams will try to go to extreme measures and offer up ridiculous assets to try to acquire him, but Flip Saunders has never shown any hint of interest in trading his best player away, and that sentiment continued on Wednesday.

For the time being, Love isn’t going anywhere.

Tweet of the Night: Dion Waiters provides an update on his knee injury after game against 76ers

Tweet of the Day: Pau Gasol Supports Lamar Odom

James Park is the chief blogger of Sheridan Hoops. You can find him on twitter @SheridanBlog.

SH Blog: Pistons fire Cheeks; Stotts hasn’t talked extension yet

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Jennings CheeksHave you ever read something so intensely negative about someone that, regardless of how credible it is, you have a hard time dissociating it from your perception of that person?

I’m not talking George Zimmerman or Woody Allen here, of course. More of a rumor, possibly not even based in fact, that just sticks around in the back of your mind forever.

SH Blog: Bynum market is slow; Aldridge wants to extend in Portland

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noncallAt what point does public acknowledgement of mistakes stop being enough?

It drew a lot of attention when Paul George was fouled on the final shot in a huge Indiana-Miami game and it wasn’t called. The latest one, featuring Monta Ellis grabbing both of Austin Rivers’ arms, was far more egregious, and the NBA has admitted it was the wrong call.