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Around The World: April 25

  1. Written by: DHawes22

    April 25 Video: Trail Blazers Copurtside

    Trail Blazers: No New Unis
    "So there you go. If Mr. Allen likes what we already have, you can be sure they ain't changing. Though notice he tweeted no "big" jersey changes, not no changes at all. So for those of you hoping for something different, there's still a chance ..."

    ESPN Insider: Hollinger: Blazers F LaMarcus Aldridge Is "All-NBA Fourth Team"
    "What's amazing is how many good bigs didn't make the cut. While we had exactly three elite point guard seasons and were scrounging for wings to fill out our team, Chandler, Garnett, LaMarcus Aldridge, Dirk Nowitzki, Josh Smith, Marc Gasol and Paul Millsap all had compelling cases to be in this frontcourt. So if I get a "fourth team," I'll fill it all with bigs: Garnett, Chandler, Nowitzki, Aldridge and Smith."

    Sports Illustrated: NBA Poll: Dirtiest Players
    "No. 8, Kurt Thomas of the Portland Trail Blazers."

    CSNNW: The Blazers GM is right in their backyard
    “I do like the situation we're in as far as having the potential to bring in a impact player,” Buchanan said. “But, I couldn't do it all by myself. It's been a team effort with Michael Born, Joe Cronin, Bill Branch, Steve Rosenberry, our stat analysis guy Ben Falk, and scouts Sean Kiely and Jason Filippi. We've all put in countless hours to make sure we put our team in the best possible situation going forward.”

    Ball Don't Lie: Metta World Peace suspended for seven games following his hit on James Harden
    "The terms of the suspension will force Metta World Peace not only to miss the next seven games and the loss of pay, but he won't be allowed in the arena when his Lakers take on the Kings, Nuggets, and possibly the second round opponent. Because the team does boast significant depth at the wing (even if Kobe Bryant, Matt Barnes, and Devin Ebanks are all working through injuries), the group should be able to sustain its winning ways in Metta's absence."

    Ball Don't Lie: For the Miami Heat, Mike Miller and the rest of us, the playoffs can’t get here soon enough
    "Trend all you want. Look at April splits, pay attention to who did what with a zone in a matchup on a Wednesday from the third week in January, and understand that talent will usually out. In the long run, it probably won't matter. The playoff participants you see suiting up on Wednesday and Thursday evening will look absolutely nothing like the ones you'll see take to the court on May 6th. More than any other year — even the 1999 lockout year — the playoffs will be an entirely different ballgame."

    Ball Don't Lie: Ivan Johnson makes amends for his turnover, but Nick Young’s the one who pays for it (VIDEO)
    "I tend to agree with the assessment made a couple months back by Trey Kerby at The Basketball Jones that Ivan Johnson should be one of everybody's favorite players. There's so many reasons to root for Johnson — the novelty of his status as a 28-year-old rookie who appeared on the NBA scene as if from nowhere (perfectly enough) in this weirdo lockout-shortened season; the eccentricity of a legitimate NBA forward who rocks diamond fronts during games and freely admits he doesn't really watch basketball; the underdog narrative of a player who went from overseas-and-D-League journeyman to key frontcourt rotation piece on the playoff-bound Atlanta Hawks this year, pretty much through hard work, toughness and sheer force of will; and so on. It's hard to find reasons to root against a guy like that."

    The Basketball Jones: Video: Warriors discover thrilling new way to lose
    "If you’re going to tank away the end of your season in order to keep your draft pick in a great draft — and that’s what the Warriors are doing, losing nine of their last 10 and 25 of 35 since the All-Star break — then you have to constantly find new ways to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. If you get blown out all the time, David Stern might get suspicious. So kudos to the Warriors for turning a tie game with 12 seconds remaining and the ball in to a 2-point defeat, at home to boot. It’s not easy to lose in that situation, but you can do anything if you put your mind to it."

    DIME: Daily Fantasy Basketball Diagnosis: 4.25
    "Chris Paul finished with 34 points, five rebounds, eight assists, two steals and four three-pointers. He shot 50 percent (10-20) from the floor and 91 percent (10-11) from the charity stripe, and had two turnovers. CP3 has been a top three stud this season, which is about as surprising as Metta World Peace contradicting his surname."

    DIME: Dime Q&A: Kyrie Irving Talks About Moving Past LeBron’s Shadow
    " I feel like I gained the most from the experience, first of all from going through a lockout and a condensed season and playing so many games in so few nights. Playing the best every single night and being prepared for playing against the best on a day-to-day basis. So it’s been an intriguing season for me and my teammates and I’ve learned a lot."

    SLAM: Post Up: Ain't No Sunshine
    "And with that, your Playoff teams are set. Utah clinched the last remaining post-season berth behind—who else?—their big men. Paul Millsap scored a game-high 26 points on 10-18 shooting, grabbed 16 rebounds, plus had 4 assists and 3 steals, Al Jefferson added an 18-16-4 line and the Jazz finished with a +14 rebounding advantage and a +10 margin on points in the paint to get past the Suns, who failed to keep their Playoff hopes within reach. Down 7 at halftime, Phoenix stormed back to take an early fourth-quarter lead, but Utah went on a 26-12 run to end the game. Steve Nash delivered with 14 points and 11 dimes, and Michael Redd and Jared Dudley each added 15 points, but Marcin Gortat shot 1-8 with 2 points (12 rebounds) and the Suns made just 5 of 23 three-pointers. Could this really be the end of the Nash era in Phoenix?"

    SLAM via Atlanta Journal Constitution: Al Horford to Miss First Round of the NBA Playoffs
    “I just spoke with Hawks center Al Horford, who confirmed that he will miss at least the first round of the playoffs. Horford has been rehabbing from left pectoral muscle surgery and said he is just not where he needs to be physically. Horford went through 4-on-4 full-court drills on Monday and was encouraged, prompting him to tell a reporter he was planning to return for the playoffs. However on Tuesday, Horford said he knew he could not play. ‘Yesterday, I realized that I’m not nearly where I need to be or want to be – not even to give the team anything,’ Horford said. ‘That’s when we kind of decided that it was best for me to take some time off, keep working, see how I progress. But we are just not where we need to be yet.’"

    SLAM: Goal Tending
    “I don’t want to just be satisfied with what I’ve done up to this point,” says Hibbert, a cerebral and quirky guy who also enjoys acting and has a growing IMDB résumé. “I want to be mentioned as one of those great centers that Georgetown made. Those guys—Dikembe [Mutombo], Patrick and Alonzo [Mourning]—they were great in college and they were great in the League. That’s what makes them the Mount Rushmore of big men, and I want to be in that lineage.”

    NJ: D'Alessandro: For Nets, a long identity crisis starts with Buck Williams
    “The identity problem has been an issue even since I was playing,” Buck said as we discussed his playing days here (1981-88). “I mean, just think of the name changes the building in the Meadowlands went through. There was always talk from the moment they got there that it wasn’t a good site for NBA basketball, or a welcome place for fans to come. It just never caught a foothold in the market, because it wasn’t associated with a city, just the side of a big highway. Then they were never able to perpetuate the success they did have, like when we made the playoffs five straight years.”

    ESPN: And The Award Winners Are ...
    "It certainly won't be all LeBron's fault if the flaw-filled Heat fall short of the East's best record, of course, but giving the standings that much weight when evaluating his MVP-worthiness is more than just. Two-time MVP Steve Nash illuminated that point for me last Friday, in a conversation in the visitors' locker room in Houston that had absolutely nothing to with LeBron, when Nash said of his scrappy Suns: "We're greater than the sum of our parts. And, as a team, that's all you can ask."

    ESPN: Who should be the All-NBA first team shooting guard?
    "Tony Parker. Going to cheat a bit here and call Tony Parker a shooting guard. What Parker has been able to do for the Spurs helps drive them toward the best record in the league as much as anything Popovich, Manu or Timmy do for San Antonio. He carried them for months before resting up for the playoffs. He should be recognized for his stellar play. (Second: Kobe Bryant; third: Dwyane Wade)"


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