Tweet of the Day: Kevin Durant Out For Season

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A few things are certain regarding the Oklahoma City Thunder this season:  First, OKC’s best bet to make the playoffs rests solely on the shoulders of All-Star guard Russell Westbrook. Second, Westbrook’s string of triple-doubles makes him the team’s best candidate for the NBA MVP award, which Kevin Durant won last year. Finally, any success that the Thunder have this season will be without Durant, who will undergo his third foot surgery in less than six months, thus ending his season,

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Bernucca: Gimme Shelter: Fallout from Durant injury will reach Near and Far

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The last 12 months represent by far the least amount of basketball Kevin Durant has played in his eight-year NBA career. In a sadly ironic twist, it also represents a time when he has had more intrigue swirling around him than ever before. In the last year, Durant has won NBA MVP and given a moving acceptance speech; quit as the new face of Team USA; created a bidding war between apparel companies in the mid nine figures; become the beacon of

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Sheridan’s MVP Rankings, Edition XII: What is and isn’t a “procedure”

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There is a procedure for determining the MVP. Ballots are e-mailed to 126 media members who cover the NBA on a regular basis, and they are due back at the league office the day after the season ends. The league then tallies the votes and decides when to announce the winner. That, folks, is a procedure. Which brings us to proper use of the word “procedure,” and how it relates to the media’s coverage of the NBA. Specifically, the Oklahoma City media

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VIDEO: No Smoothing Means $90 Million Cap; Fiscal Insanity?

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Now that the NBA Players union has rejected the league’s “smoothing” proposal to gradually increase the salary cap, we are going to see extraordinary financial changes over the next several years. When the NBA’s new television money kicks in for the 2016-17 season, the salary cap — currently at $64 million — will jump to an estimated $90 million. That means a player like Kevin Durant, who will be eligible for a starting salary worth slightly less than 35 percent of

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Sprung: MVP Candidates Pros and Cons, By the Numbers

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This season’s MVP race is shaping up to be the best one in quite some time. The perceived top five candidates this season – James Harden, Stephen Curry, Anthony Davis, LeBron James and Russell Westbrook – represent the top five in PER, three of the top five in win shares and lead the NBA in nearly two dozen major statistical categories. We’re pretty well covered with MVP rankings on this site with Sheridan’s regular updates, and other staffers have chimed in

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SH Blog: Wade rips Whiteside after latest ejection; Former NBA executive foresees Durant trade

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Monday night represented the second time in four games that Miami big man Hassan Whiteside found himself ejected from a game for an unnecessary cheap shot. On Tuesday, the NBA added to his troubles with a one-game suspension without pay for an “elbow to the back of Kelly Olynyk’s neck”. With Whiteside only playing 22 minutes, the Heat (28-35) lost a game that was, on paper, a very winnable home matchup against the Celtics (26-36). And because of that, the Heat now

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Bernucca: Westbrook is Awesome, But Not Hardenesque in MVP Race

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Let’s get something out of the way here. Russell Westbrook is awesome. Westbrook is one of the game’s top five players, and I’ve felt that way for a couple of years. He may not be a better conventional point guard than Chris Paul or Tony Parker or Stephen Curry. But if any of those guys even dream about being a better player than Westbrook, they better wake up and get back to reality. I also love watching Westbrook play. I cannot recall

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Bernucca: Suns’ Epilogue on Dragic is Self-Serving Spin

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There was a lot of shade in the Valley of the Sun this week. It all started with Goran Dragic, who is far from blameless in this mess. But because the Phoenix Suns sent Dragic packing in a trade, president Lon Babby and GM Ryan McDonough got to write the epilogue and spin it in intelligence-insulting fashion. Dragic is an unrestricted free agent this summer. At 28, it’s his first and last chance at a max contract. And while the idea of

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